Pre-IM Muskoka 70.3 Update

Pre-IM Muskoka 70.3 Update

Well, I’m starting to feel good. Starting to get excited for IM Muskoka 70.3 this weekend. The race is Sunday, and the forecast looks great.

The last two weeks have been somewhat of a blur. Flying by, lots going on both in my triathlon life and in my not-triathlon life.

Personal stuff aside, recovery from Guelph took longer than I expected. I wasn’t really feeling back to my normal self again for 8-10 days following the race. My legs were in rough shape, and I very likely tried to get back on the bike and work again too soon.

Over the last week I’ve had some good training though. Last year in the lead up to the Barrelman, my ‘A’ race, I did a full three week taper. I could tell on race day that it was overkill. For Guelph, a ‘B’ race, I didn’t really taper and just did a few light days ahead of the race. I could tell during the race that I was feeling slightly worse than I’d hoped, but still good and strong.

So my strategy this time around is to split the difference. Taper starts today, Tuesday, for a Sunday race. That’s still very short by endurance standards, but I can make it work. Tonight will be probably a 60 to 90 minute ride with a few blocks of race-pace effort. I’ll scale down duration of the rest of this week leading to a day off Friday. Travel Saturday with a bit of exercise to keep things flowing. Race Sunday.

I’m finding expectations tough to set for this race too. This being only my second 70.3, and the first being Barrelman (FLAT), I don’t really have much to compare this to.

On the swim, I expect to swim faster than at Barrelman. Ideally I’ll put in a 1:35m/100 or better (if I can catch a draft). That’s about 11 seconds per 100 better than Barrelman, which means roughly 2 minute improvement over 2 km.

On the bike, the Muskoka course has a ton of elevation change. I will go slower, most likely, than I did at Barrelman despite being a much better cyclist than I was. I don’t have any clue what a target time for this even should be. Given the info I currently have, if I’m under 3 hours, I’ll be ecstatic. I’ll know more once I’ve had a chance to check out the course though.

On the run, things here should go better than Barrelman. At Barrelman, I definitely overbiked and as a result the run course was punishing in its elevation changes. My cycling is quite a bit stronger than last year, meaning my legs should have more pep off the bike than last year. I don’t think I’m capable of sub-5 min kms through 21 as I did in Guelph through 10, but I should be able to beat my disappointing 6:12/km at Barrelman last year.

Add it all up and I think I’ll come out with a fairly close overall time year-over-year. 5:35. If I can put together a decent run, I’ll come in faster. On a tougher course, I don’t think I can ask for much more.

Really, my expectation is to enjoy this event. This will be my first Ironman branded event as well, and I’m looking forward to see what all the fuss is about.

Then it’s holidays! I’ll try to post here following the race before I’m off the grid for a week.

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