Castles in the Sand

Every kid knows that you have to get it just right. The sand must be the right consistency, not too dry or too wet. If it is too wet then it flops into a cow paddy, too dry and it does not hold its shape. Just the right combination to bring out the little turrets, towers and walls that elevate this mud cake to something special. Elevate it above mere recreation.

So too with our architecture for an event. Our turrets of Load, Recovery, Nutrition, Sleep, Work etc all need to be in the right balance and position for you to build a higher and higher fortress that holds shape, is supported by each pillar and does not fall over. If you are lucky then you have built above the high water level and your tower survives a few rogue waves. Well maybe not a spring high but race day’s high tide.

M got sick (I don’t blame her one bit) but I do admit that it added to my stress. Trying to stay germ free and getting enough sleep (with a coughing partner) were adding up to dilute my sand sculpture. I was trying to add some harder sessions in order to sharpen up before I taper. The great tired set in pretty fast and hard. What I failed to understand for the last 6 days is that I needed to restore balance. Drastic action was required. I decided to cut my losses and take an extra rest day today instead of the planned long bike ride. Marcel’s Frozen Yoghurt and take away coffee replaced my bike ride. Afternoon snooze replaced bike clean (Bert is still dirty and growling at me). DVD replaced recovery shake.

Tomorrow was a planned rest anyway and I will stick with that. I hope that two days will kick the recharge button.

Some times you have to build a moat rather than extra gun turrets to protect your palace.

Three things I liked about the Argus Cycle Tour Expo:

Every year in March there is a mad frenzy to get everything ready for the Argus Expo. The biggest retail expo in SA and certainly bigger than anything else in the sporting goods market.

Every year I see the same faces. Eddy Cassar and his crew run good operation. This year I was struck by how little innovation there was. However three ideas stood out for me:

I almost missed the Polar V800 multi sport watch. Peter and his crew only had a pre production model which they were guarding with beady eyes. They never let it get too far out of reach just in case I made a runner….. If the V800 lives up to expectations then this will certainly give Garmin and Suunto some real competition. I would say it is a couple of years too late and Polar now has some catching up to do but judging by previous products from them you can expect a solid unit with some real good tech behind it. Check out the DC Rainmaker feature on the unit here. I can’t wait to test one of these!

I like to support South African companies and here are two that impressed me:

I was chatting to Mark from 32Gi. He is always interesting when you can follow all the tech and science he throws at you. He has an interesting recovery drink with pea protein. I have not tested it but sounds interesting. Watch this space as they are developing some cool new products with their new IM athletes! Bring it on I say! This should complete their product offering. And that is all I can say right now.

rebulThen I wondered around and saw the bike box in the picture made by Rebul. It is made entirely of cardboard by a company who seems to have very little to do with bicycles. This idea is so cool that it deserves mention here. Super strong, recycleable, easy to pack flat when not in use. Boxes are custom made to your specs. I love it and certainly will support them going forward when I need to transport my bike to the next event. Oh and they only cost R800!

Two Ocean’s Recovery

In 24h many of us are going to look back on the days events and plan the future. Just caught this article on Dean Karnazes’ blog on Runner’s World US. He talks about recovery.
One of the things mentioned is swimming.
Ah dunking tired legs in icy cold water after a running effort has never sounded very appealing to me but I understand that it works.
So who is going to dash off to the Atlantic tomorrow afternoon for a quick dip? After we have completed the Two Ocean’s Ultra or Half Marathon

I will certainly make an effort. Not sure if the lethargy will win though.