Jack v Sarcoma Ironman Blog – Week 17 (03/06/19 – 09/06/19)

Monday – Strength Session, Nutritionist Meeting

In light of previous revelations regarding my “weak trunk”, the strength sessions two times a week will mainly focus on legs and controlling my core during various movements. I’m feeling more solid already.

I also met with nutritionist Rebecca Hay during my lunch break to discuss plans to sort out my diet. Whilst we will need to fine tune it once I’ve locked in a new plan with my conditioning coach (next week). The general improvement points revolved around more rapid consumption of proteins and carbs immediately after a session, as well as consuming a small breakfast before my morning workouts. She also gave me a few meal prep ideas to make for work lunches which will certainly replace the chicken and rice combo I’ve had going the past few weeks…

Tuesday – 1:00 Swim, 0:45 Run (Z2) with 4 x 2min Z4 sprints @ 1min

The plan was for the above session. However following a rubbish day at work I stopped early in the swim (15mins) with my mind all over the place and not focussed on the new technique movements I’d been working on. I genuinely stopped mid-lap and just had no motivation to keep pushing through which was extremely frustrating.

Smashed out a run/sprint back home through the rain which helped bury some of the frustrations. Ran some solid time for the nearly 5km run (4:10min/km) but still disappointed I couldn’t get through the swimming session.

Wednesday – 0:45 Bike into 0:30 Run (Z2), Strength Session

Massive session, took ages. Started with weights just because I saw a rare moment that the squat rack wasn’t occupied by some massive Bulgarian dude. Have found that chucking small plates under my heels during the squats has massively increased my range of motion which will no doubt be beneficial.

Rode hard in Z3 for the majority of the time with 4 intervals of 1min all out thrown in to test myself. Was definitely sweating more than normal today which was gross. Quickly rotated out of the indoor bike and on to the treadmill for a solid run at 3% gradient. Was also sitting in the Z3 lactate threshold throughout. Felt great afterwards and tried to incorporate the nutritionist’s advice by having a protein smoothie thing (YoPro, yes I’m open for sponsorship) immediately after while waiting on the bus. Vanilla is always the best flavour of anything…

Thursday – 1:00 Swim, 1:15 Bike (100rpm+) (Z2), Running Analysis Session

Completed a running analysis with Robert Mullard. Similar to the swim, great to get some personalised advice as to what I can improve upon. He gave me a few drills to work on and will touch base with my strength coach to try and incorporate some routines in there to help with my running. The main takeaways for my running technique included:

  • Moving my arms from my shoulders rather than by just rotating my torso side to side.
  • Running with more of a forward slant/tilt in my upper body, which will in turn get my foot plant much more below my centre of gravity and allow me to run on the balls of my feet more easily as well.

Really put in a good swim session to make up for my rubbish one on Tuesday. Felt great throughout and my watch’s efficiency measure (called SWOLF or something funny like that) has recorded notable improvements since the lesson a couple a weeks ago which is awesome. The lower the SWOLF, the more efficient the stroke (i.e. if you take less strokes per lap, but with a really fast time, you’ll have a lower SWOLF score thingy because your swimming action is more efficient).

Following the debacle of Sunday’s “dooring” by the mother of two in Willoughby, I slumped back to the safety of the Iron Bay loop. It was bloody freezing but the arm-warmers from Tyron’s collection were sufficient to get me through it.

Friday – 1:00 Run (Z2)

Ripped around Pyrmont and Wentworth Park for a couple of loops. The main objective was to work on the running technique tips from yesterday’s session. My pace on the run was significantly better for this run, with my heart rate still staying at a solid level (averaged 155bpm) throughout.

Writing this now on Saturday, I’ve also definitely noticed less soreness in my back after the run, which is often a slight issue just due to the nature of running on concrete. Happy with the changes I made thus far

Saturday – 2:00 Cycle (Z2)

Used the Garmin “routes” app for the first time to give me a route to cycle up near Palm Beach. I input the start/finish point, how far I want to go (50km) and which direction I want to travel (any) and it spits out a cycle-able route which I can then read off on my watch as I’m cycling.

This was a ripper ride and far better than my Willoughby experience last week. The drivers up and around this area also seemed less pissed off with me than those around Northbridge which made cycling on the main road more enjoyable. The hills up and around the back of Bilgola were nasty. I don’t really know what elevations and hills are considered relatively “difficult” in the cycling world but I’m pretty sure that this was as difficult (and probably more difficult) that the hills those Tour de France chumps do.

All in all, no major crashes and heavy sweating = good workout

Sunday –1:30 Run (Z2-Z3)

Went on a long run up and around the hills near Mackerel Beach. Tried to really push myself throughout whilst incorporating the techniques from the analysis. Found that I ran at a great tempo, with a dip in the pace during a big section of walking trail running, where I was running around rocks and plants. Looked a great area for a cycle if I could be bothered driving up the coast to get to the start point.

23 weeks until game day! This week I’ve got a conditioning meeting with endurance specialist Hamish Gorman to change up the workouts I’ve been doing for the next couple of months. Thus far I’ve mainly been focussing on longer, endurance-based sessions, trying to stay in that Z2 heart rate and essentially just improve my ability to use my legs for a long time. I suspect Hamish will look to introduce a lot more interval-based sessions to more effectively boost my fitness levels, whilst using the weekends to fit in these long, steadier heart rate sessions to ensure I’m still ticking that box. Hopefully I can share this new program on the blog next week for y’all to take a look at.

 

As always, if you have any suggestions or ideas to help raise awareness for sarcoma research and/or the work CRBF do, please shoot me a message on social media or via email (jack.racklyeft@gmail.com). Please share this, or any information from my donation page below to anyone and everyone you can. I have no doubt that slowly but surely, we will start to raise awareness and to make a truly positive change:

https://donorbox.org/jack-s-ironman-for-sarcoma

Jack v Sarcoma Ironman Blog – Week 16 (27/05/19 – 02/06/19)

Monday – REST

Tuesday – 1:00 Swim, 1:00 Run (Z2) with 4 x 2min Z4 sprints @ 1min

First swimming session after the lesson on Sunday. Just did 20 x 100m sets, focussing on:

  1. Breathing earlier in my stroke
  2. Not diving my hands too deep into the water with each stroke (i.e. allowing me to “catch” more water, higher on each stroke)

My technique got exponentially better as the session went on and I could really feel a big difference when everything was falling into place with the adjustments. The run was solid and ran some good times at a good HR.

Wednesday – 0:45 Bike into 0:30 Run (Z2)

Nothing interesting to report. Slowly picking up speed on the bike

Thursday – 1:00 Swim, 1:15 Bike (100rpm+) (Z2)

The swim was tonnes better than Tuesday’s. Felt like I was far more efficient throughout the whole session which is a great outcome. I’m finding that my muscles are taking some time to adjust to the more elevated catch, but they were certainly less fatigued then they were on Tuesday.

It was a cold evening but had a great cycle around Iron Cove. Work colleague Tyron has gifted me about 4-5 sets of his cycling gear and it makes a big difference, particularly in the cold where the arm warmers do wonders. Cheers mate!

Friday – 0:45 Run (Z2)

Had a football game this evening which meant I had to scrap one of the sessions. Chose the swimming session and used the run as a good warmup for the football game. Knocked the top off of my knee wound again. The constant dressing of it to avoid ruining every set of pants I wear to work moves into its third week…

Saturday – 1:30 Run (Z1 – Z2)

Completed an early morning 1hr run before a boxing class which went well, and the remaining 30 mins in the afternoon with my mate who’s training for the City2Surf, having never done any long distance running. Seems to be ticking along well.

Sunday –2:00 Cycle (Z2)

The plan was to ride from Annandale out to Belrose to meet up with Lexie, her brother and his wife + baby. I feel like people cycle this route a bit, but I hated it. So much traffic and so much that could potentially go wrong. Speaking of which, got clattered by a lady opening her back right passenger door as I cycled past going up towards Boundary Rd around Willoughby.

She opened without looking from her parked car and I slammed into the door and flew off to the right onto the active traffic lane. Thankfully, as I tumbled onto the road there were no cars behind me so I managed to not get run over today. Pretty traumatising experience to be honest and I suspect I’ll be sticking to the safety and security of the usual Iron Cove loop from now on… Finished the ride cautiously…

To round it all off, as I was arriving home a spoke on my rear tyre broke so I’ll have to look around for some new ones in the coming days.

25 weeks until game day! Next week I’ve got a nutritionist appointment lined up to help shred some poundage and improve what I’m eating before the long rides/runs. Social media competition coming in hot also!

 

As always, if you have any suggestions or ideas to help raise awareness for sarcoma research and/or the work CRBF do, please shoot me a message on social media or via email (jack.racklyeft@gmail.com). Please share this, or any information from my donation page below to anyone and everyone you can. I have no doubt that slowly but surely, we will start to raise awareness and to make a truly positive change:

https://donorbox.org/jack-s-ironman-for-sarcoma

Jack v Sarcoma Ironman Blog – Week 15 (20/05/19 – 26/05/19)

Monday – REST

Tuesday – 1:00 Swim, 1:00 Run (Z2) with 4 x 2min Z4 sprints @ 1min

The swim distance has ramped up to about 2.5km’s per session, and I’ve also introduced a third session per week. I think if I’m going to actually do alright in one of the components then it’ll be the swim. I’ve also added some intervals mid-run to start to build my anaerobic capacity and to try and better control my heartrate.

I didn’t eat enough during the day and mid-swim/throughout the run I wasn’t in a great state. Packed a Gatorade which saved me.

Wednesday – 0:45 Bike into 0:30 Run (Z2)

Completed the components of the bike over a few sessions. Going to the gym for boxing, to and from work. Finally managed to borrow an old pair of bib knicks and a jersey. It looks so bad. Also took a tumble as I emerged from the car park before the ride to the gym. Some tradies in traffic behind me loved it.

Thursday – 1:00 Swim, 1:15 Bike (100rpm+) (Z1)

The swim felt good. Have locked in a swim analysis session on Sunday which should really get my technique fully up to scratch. Cycling is going well, loving being outdoors rather than inside on the indoor trainer

Friday – 1:00 Swim, 1:00 Run (Z2)

Visited an exercise physiologist out at Olympic Park to get some ideas on how I was tracking with strength and conditioning. Key items to come out of the visit were:

  • Flexibility is not good
  • My right leg is significantly weaker than my left
  • ‘Trunk’ needs work

He’s sent through a strength and mobility program to incorporate into the training twice a week. Fingers crossed my right ass can improve over the coming months.

Saturday – 1:30 Run (Z1 – Z2)

Felt good despite playing some extremely bad golf in the morning.

Sunday – 1:00 Technique Swim, 2:00 Cycle (Z2)

Rode to and from the swim session with the coach (Adam). It was fantastic and I came away with lots of different things to work on in the coming month’s training (breathing earlier, catching the water higher than I am currently). I’ll certainly head back for a refresh in 4-5 weeks time.

Came off the bike again on the way back from the swimming lesson out at Auburn. It was bleeding everywhere but a lovely lady in a car next to where I fell offered me her Dettol wipes and large band-aids which she seemingly keeps in the car for these extraordinarily unique occasions.

 

This week was a really good one exercise-wise. Started slow and sluggish but finished strong. These consultations with the physiologist and swimming coach will make a huge difference in the long run too. Monday will represent 26 weeks til game day.

As always, if you have any suggestions or ideas to help raise awareness for sarcoma research and/or the work CRBF do, please shoot me a message on social media or via email (jack.racklyeft@gmail.com). Please share this, or any information from my donation page below to anyone and everyone you can. I have no doubt that slowly but surely, we will start to raise awareness and to make a truly positive change:

https://donorbox.org/jack-s-ironman-for-sarcoma

Week 2

Monday – REST

Tuesday – 1:00 Swim, 1:00 Run (Z2)

These sessions seem to be going quite well. The swimming stroke is getting more efficient with each passing session and the runs are probably my favourite training efforts at this stage.

Wednesday – 0:45 Bike into 0:30 Run (Z2)
Today was my first time ever riding with cleats, and first outdoors training cycle of the campaign. I was warned about the difficulties of twisting out of the cleats to stop and balance myself and as such, completed about 15 minutes of practice in our downstairs garage area before venturing out into the real world. I felt like an 8 year old learning to ride again and hit the deck at about the same rate. I assume this is what all professionals do regularly.

As part of a CRBF challenge, I sent out the challenge for supporters to bump the fundraising total up from $6.2k to $6.5k in a couple of hours. In exchange for this, I’d shave my hair into a Mohawk and sport it during the whole of Anzac Day. $300 worth of donations later and I looked maybe as
unattractive as I ever have in my life (and that’s saying something). Thank you once again for all your tremendous support! Keep telling your friends and family about the amazing cause!

Thursday – 1:00 Swim, 1:15 Bike (100rpm+) (Z1)
The swim was boring but relaxing. Completed this cycle indoors after the trials and tribulations of the inaugural outdoors cycle yesterday, but also because the Manchester Derby was on and I had to watch. Time flew by with that on… 2 – 0 to Man City. I’m pretty sure Bernardo Silva is not of this
world but I will continue to investigate.

Friday – 1:00 Run (Z2)
This was my first run with a shaved head following the success of the donations over the past week. I realised that I really must wear a cap for every run whilst in this state for a couple of reasons:
a) Sunburn prevention
b) My head gets too cold
If those two concerns don’t convince you that I’m Ironman material, then nothing ever will…

Saturday – 3:00 Cycle (Z2)
Nothing too interesting to report. Handlebars got a little loose and started to droop forward/down near the end of the ride which made things interesting/extremely dangerous.

Sunday – 1:30 Run (Z1 – Z2)
This was my longest week of work, hours-wise so far. I’m feeling great and the ratio/breakdown of training days for each discipline and the Monday rest days in my training plan seem perfect at the moment. Definitely need to do more stretching though. The coming week has 12 hours of training in
store and Monday will represent 31 weeks til game day.

If you have any suggestions or ideas to help raise awareness for sarcoma research and/or the work CRBF do, please shoot me a message on social media or via email (jack.racklyeft@gmail.com).

Please share this, or any information from my donation page below to anyone and everyone you can. I have no doubt that slowly but surely, we will start to raise awareness and to make a truly positive change:

https://donorbox.org/jack-s-ironman-for-sarcoma

Week One

As a method of better engaging with all those interested in my Ironman and fundraising journey throughout the year, I’ll be looking to whip up a weekly recap of the week that has been. Depending on feedback I receive back from my loyal followers (i.e. just my mum, potentially my girlfriend…) I’ll add more, shorten, or change the content I’m putting out.

Monday – REST

So far so good

Tuesday – 1:00 Swim, 1:00 Run (Z2)

For future reference, whenever I’m mentioning Z’s (Z1, Z2, Z3 or Z4) it’s in reference to my heart rate for the activity, with Z1 being a light workout and Z4 being unsustainable for more than 5-10 minutes. Given my lack of cardio ability in these early stages, the general gist for my workouts is to build my base aerobic capacity, which means staying in this Z1-Z2 zone.

Wednesday – 0:45 Bike into 0:15 Run (Z2)

These kinds of sessions start to build my tolerance during the final transition of the Ironman. The general consensus I’m getting about Ironman’s is that this transition from the 6.5hr cycle into the marathon run is the most difficult part of the race so it will understandably make up a lot of my sessions over these 30 or so weeks

Thursday – 1:00 Bike (100rpm+) (Z1)

Currently the most boring sessions I’m doing, mainly because I’m stuck on the indoor bike at the moment watching tedious amounts of classic English Premier League matches (Newcastle vs Arsenal 2010/11 was a ripper game to be fair…)

I also met with Tania Rice-Brading (co-founder of CRBF) for the first time. It was incredible to get a sense of her story and the trials and tribulations that her and her family have had to go through as a result of sarcoma. I’ve never met anyone who has truly made me feel so welcome and comfortable so quickly and I can’t wait to learn more about the foundation and its plans going forward!

Friday – 1:00 Run (Z2)

Knowing I had to leave at 6am to drive to Albury (6hrs) for the Easter Weekend, this run started at 4:30am. This run sucked.

Saturday – 1:00 Run (Z2)

Suspecting a potential sesh that evening, I tried to achieve a significant calorie deficit to make myself feel better about what was about to come. Ultimately, I was unsuccessful

Sunday – Not Alive (Z0)

Hungover, no movement detected…

 

This week’s work was solid, despite the disruption from the Easter Long Weekend. Missing out on the key long cycle on Sunday was the only major disruption. Next week has 11 hours of training in store and Monday will represent 32 weeks til game day.

As I will continue to ask during the coming weeks, if you have any suggestions or ideas to help raise awareness for sarcoma research and/or the work CRBF do, please shoot me a message on social media or via email (jack.racklyeft@gmail.com). Please share this, or any information from my donation page below to anyone and everyone you can. I have no doubt that slowly but surely, we will start to raise awareness and to make a truly positive change.

https://donorbox.org/jack-s-ironman-for-sarcoma

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