6 in @ row@IMUK wk 21/25

Rookie goes for 6 in a row @ Ironman UK week 21/25

Based on a 90 minute swim, 10 minutes in T1 then a 50 minute 12 mile ‘pre loop’ flash to Horwich, (2h 30 total) we are left with 8 hours to complete 3 laps of the main bike circuit…….

Today I did 3 laps in 2:30, 2:32 & 2.50 (7hr 52 total)

Consider this guide the absolute shittest you can be on the bike and still scrape the cut offs by the skin of your teeth……

Before we get cracking, it’s important that I ‘frame’ it…..

I might have done Bolton 5 times in a row but that doesn’t mean i’m any good…..

‘Just’ get round and i’m happy as a pig in shit….

It was an impossible dream in 2017 but I became addicted to the way the wonderful supporters react to you on race day plus I buzz off the way you feel when you dedicate 6 months of your life training for it (like you could fight a lion and win)

Whilst I have been training fairly consistently all year, it’s been a rocky road full of blips – at 5/11 and 14 stone 3, i’m at least 2 stone over ‘peak’.

Today was my first attempt at 3 laps back to back….

Here is what happened…..

Lap 1 – 2 hour 30

Cracking day for it and I felt strong as an ox as I made my way onto Chorley New Road at the junction with Beaumont Road, which is precisely where the main circuit starts on race day…..

One of the biggest pieces of advice the Ironmen gave me was to ‘ride within yourself’ on your first lap…..

This is easier said than done as rider after ride comes stomping past but you must resist and keep yourself ‘under the bridle’ so to speak……

Managed to do it and record 2:30 with no major dramas to report……

Lap 2 – 2h 32

After a 5 minute re-fuel it was on with lap 2…..

I continued to feel strong initially however fairly soon began to roll my eyes at the thought of a further 5 hours in the saddle…..

At the top of Greenmount I asked one of the Ironmen for a tow round to Turton…

‘”No problem” he replied but then proceeded to light his turbos and leave me for dust…..


On the very steep hill up to Edgeworth another lad came flying past me as I grinded it out half way up…..

“What the hell have you had” I shouted but he just laughed it off and showed me how it’s really done……

The legs were starting to feel sore…..

One thing that kept me going was hitting the various checkpoints at an almost identical time to that of the first lap……

Entwistle reservoir 2nd time was much tougher as expected and Smithalls dean was bang out of order, but I was pleased to hit 2:32 all the same……

Lap 3 – 2 hour 50

I was shocked at how good I felt when I started this 3rd lap…..

It was a combination of feeling cocky because I now had 3 hours in the bank (which I hought would be plenty) and, when you are used to being tortured on smithalls dean road, anything that isn’t that feels a relative piece of piss…..

Cruised round to Walshaw feeling pretty smug I did…..

But Let me tell you something…..

The climb from Walshaw to Afetside on lap 3 is where all your problems start my friend…..

The relentless grind literally feels like it goes on forever……

As I trundled along in great pain, I was thinking of a way to describe how lap 3 feels for yer ‘common man’…..

I would describe as follows…….

Imagine, if you will, trying to cycle pissed after first being twatted black and blue with a baseball bat on your neck, shoulders, lower back, arse cheeks and both legs, thigh to calf……

‘limping’ isn’t the word…..

Entwistle res, delph saling club and smithalls dean on lap 3 are enough to send even the toughest of Ironmen over the edge……

7.52 against an 8 hour cut off is sailing far too close to the wind for me……

Speaking of the wind……

Mark my words……

If it’s blowing a gale on race day then 50% of us are fooked……

More work required….

As the masses get smashed for the Queens jubilee, i’ll be back on the circuit having another crack at 3 laps…..

Might even take me TT bike and answer the age old question…..

“TT bike or road bike for Bolton?”

I’ll let you know next week….


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