Thomas: Going short to go long

The recent weeks have been a balance between high training hours and trying to get the appropriate recovery to continue the building process for my main target of Ironman Wisconsin in September. While most of my training has been long efforts to get my endurance up to spec, I was able to race the national Olympic distance championships this past weekend to work on my speed.

It was great fun! Not only was I able to win with a decent time (by my standards) but it felt really good to open up a bit and really go hard. I was a bit surprised to be able to go so deep considering the type of relatively long, slow training I have done lately. However, I suppose it just proves how despite the significantly higher speeds of Olympic distance, compared to long distance, they are both pure endurance sports where aerobic capacity is still the key to success.

thomasdarby sm 2013The national Olympic distance championships, known as the Kuopio triathlon, are becoming a staple on the domestic triathlon scene with an impressive turnout for this year’s edition with around 700 participants. The multiple lap course organized in the large town of Kuopio was enjoyable as a participant and very well suited to spectators as well. The organizers did a great job of promoting the event with national television doing a fair bit of coverage, which is extremely rare for the sport in Finland.

The great weekend was completed by my wife joining me for the trip as we celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary. I wish she could travel to all my races as I rarely loose a race when she is there supporting me. At least when I race in the US I know my wife is glued to the computer watching split times and being nervous as I pull myself back to the front after my ‘relaxed’ swim starts.

I now have a week of huge training volume left before I begin tapering for Ironman Wisconsin. In 10 days I will do another Olympic distance as my final tune-up for Wisconsin with Rev3 Maine. However, this race will be a non-drafting event so it will be perhaps even better for my abilities and closer effort to long distance than a draft legal race. Either way, I am looking forward to topping off a successful block of training with some fast race in Maine before focusing in on Ironman Wisconsin.

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Darby Thomas


Darby Thomas on Suomessa asuva, mutta Yhdysvalloissa syntynyt triathlonin ammattilainen. Thomaksen blogi julkaistaan englanniksi.
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