TDC athlete Peter Stock tells you how he clocked a personal Best time in the Clumber Duathlon this weekend on his way to 3rd Place in his Age group!
As the rest of the country bathed in sunshine, the Clumber Park Duathlon start was delayed by 30minutes due to thick fog! I had timed my preparation perfectly and was racked, ready and warmed up right on time, so the delay was a bit frustrating. It was the same for everyone I suppose, but I was keen to get on with it, as my nerves were jangling. It had been a difficult build up week, and I wasn’t confident. Perry Agass, my coach, had needed to give me a serious talking to on Friday to get my head back in the right place and now I was on a mission. “nail the bike” we’re his instructions, and I wasn’t going to let him down on that one. I lined up for the start in the front row. As a 55-59 age-grouper that is probably a bit of a cheek, but I meant business, and when the hooter went I put in the fastest first kilometre I had in me. The course was two out-and-back laps, so I could gauge my position quite well, and I was trying to keep my pace between 4:00-4:10/km. I got a good rhythm and put in a decent 40:50 for the 10k, got through transition with no problems, and out on the bike.
No tactics here, just go as hard as I can, chanting the mantra: “nail the bike! Nail the bike!” Not many came past me, and I figured I could give those who did about three decades, so I felt good. The course was fairly flat, and I was on the aero bars nearly the whole time. I was also wearing a pointy hat for the first time and was conscious of maximising any benefits I could get. My legs were hurting – a lot – but there was no way I was letting myself get off the pace. Apart from the mantra, I just thought of all those lonely turbo sessions through the winter. “If you can do those you can do this. Don’t be a wimp, drive through, keep it going.” I nailed the bike, beating my PB by 6 minutes, a huge margin and a huge reward for all those turbo sessions. 1:11.
Through transition again, no problems. The first time I did a duathlon I set off for the second run with one bike shoe and one run shoe, so I was happy to be off and running, even though my heart rate was through the roof and my legs belonged to someone else! Only 5K, just give it everything. Ok, “everything” wasn’t amounting to much, but it was all I had, and I put in a time of 21:42.
I finished in 2:15:36. 3rd over 50, and 43rd overall. Not bad for an old man, and not bad considering I’m not a duathlete but a triathlete. All of this is just training, as I will be representing GB at the European Triathlon Championships in April. After many years of DIY training, I set myself a goal of wearing the GB vest about 18 months ago. I qualified last September, and decided my own efforts wouldn’t be good enough at that level so signed up with TDC’s Perry Agass. Since then my training has changed massively, and my results have improved dramatically. True, I have lost all my friends, my mother hates me, my children dont recognise me, and my marriage is hanging by a thread, but the training is going very well!
So a good result at Clumber Park, and a great springboard for next April. I go out to Lanzarotte on a training camp next week, and then it’s tapering for the Euros. Between panic attacks, I can’t wait!