Winter gains

February 20th, 2017 by


With over half of the winter ticked off now and just 5 weeks till my first race of the year. I thought I’d update you on how things are going and how the season is shaping up.

I’ve just returned from my 3rd trip to Lanzarote this winter staying at my home from home Sands Beach Resort. My aim this winter was to get through as consistent as possible and as far as I’m concerned, just that would already be a big success for me. I’ve always prided myself for being a consistent athlete in training and racing but the the past 5 years not so much at all as every winter has had it’s complications and sometimes that also crept into the season as well. I think February and March are very important preparation months and if you miss half of that with sickness, crashes, injuries, motivation. Whatever it is then you’re paying for it during the season.


The past 3 years I was wintering in South Africa and as much as I think it’s a stunning location and an incredible place to spend time, for me it’s not ideal for training anymore. It’s too hot (in training and also when trying to recover at home) the wind and the hills slowly grind you down and to be honest, quite dangerous and the chances of having something go wrong is high. So I decided now to train most of the winter in Lanzarote. Our team sponsor Sands Beach look after us so well providing us with a warm outdoor pool a pull buoy’s throw away, great accommodation and healthy food that we can grab just moments after training which is perfect for recovery. The temperature is spot on for consistent training during winter at around 20-23’c but it’s also cool enough to sleep like a baby at night. It’s a tough island due to the hills and the wind but equally that makes you strong! As it’s probably the best place in Europe to train in the winter many professional athletes train on the island so you always have someone to train with as well as the local athletes on the island keen to hook up.


As I write this the winter has gone perfectly to plan, my form is slowly moving in the right direction and I’m excited for the first block of racing. So far I’ve planned just the first part of the season as what happens after that will depend on the first races. I’ll go to Puerto Rico 70.3 first up, mostly as a tune up and to blow the cob webs out. Then I’ll take an internal flight to Boulder, Colorado for a block of altitude training where my family will also come and join me. Then after a month there my first big goal, Ironman Texas which is also the American Championships (big points and prize money). My goal is to qualify for Kona again but I only want to go if I know I can be successful. This means qualifying early enough in the year that I’m fresh enough in October to put together a hot and hard Ironman performance but I also need to know my Time Trialling is in place and that’s what I’ve been working on his winter. This is my weakness and it’s something I’ve been working hard to improve. Puerto Rico and Texas will be the first indicators if my biking is ready to play with the big boys.

I hope you all have a successful winter and excited for the Tri season, see you out there!

Photo Credit : Breakthrough media