Blog 3 – UltraHumps 3+2+1=Charity

Hi blog followers

Well it has been an interesting week of training and receiving feedback from Coach Ray regarding where I have gone wrong in training and on the same token where I have got it right.

Coach Ray is fully involved with planning the training each week, which he does an excellent job of for all his athletes.  My running and swimming have improved and I haven’t had any running injuries for a long time with Ray’s training.  I do have to put my hand up and note I struggle to maintain the desired levels on the bike.

The feedback I receive is great and keeps me focused.  It does show how important the use of devices such as my Garmin GPS and Heart Rate Monitor are, as they allow a Coach to monitor and provide guidance.  It certainly makes me wonder how I was going when I was ‘self coaching’ using only a stopwatch on my wrist and a speedo on my bike.  It would have been hard for Coach Ray to coach me once he took me on as I didn’t own a Garmin, etc.

The comments from Coach Ray steer me in the right direction and make me want to try harder whilst training.  What I like the most about working with Coach Ray is that he always boosts confidence with his advice about training as he assists all his athletes to achieve their goals.

The major point of interest I had this week was to get an opportunity to talk with the Army Nutritionist, the wonderful Nicola Martin who took time out of her busy schedule and spent an hour and a half if not close to two hours with me.

The reality is, I never really knew much about nutrition and didn’t have a proper grasp or understanding of protein, carbohydrates versus energy, versus my crap diet.  To put it plainly I was eating anything and everything and not necessarily healthy options.  I was smug thinking it didn’t matter as I’ll burn it off anyway.  Well that may be true, but nutrition also goes a long way towards recovery and getting ones self better for their next training session, etc.  Nicola probably thought I was a lost cause after I explained to her what my diet plan was, but whilst this is only my first week following her guidance I feel so much better already.

I guess I have learned from Nicola what I learned from Coach Ray when I first became one of his clients.  With training I just thought it was all about distance.  Under Ray’s training regime I rapidly learned it was about training smarter.

Under Nicola’s guidance its also about eating smarter.  After all, I have often heard that nutrition is the fourth discipline for an endurance sport, along side swimming, cycling and running.

So with six events totalling 1306 kilometres of swimming, cycling and running in the name of charity, this week has been an excellent wake-up call for nutrition towards training.  It was time to clean out the fridge and the food cupboards etc and start afresh with a new focus.  My partner is on board, as is my daughter.  My work colleagues are finding it amusing with the change in the diet they are observing me eat.

I will keep you posted next week on how it all goes with the training and nutrition plan, plus any other information that I receive towards my events.

The enclosed photo brings me to the start of Ultraman Australia, in-line with the start of sorting out my nutrition plan.  This photo shows all athletes under the start/finishers chute at Ultraman Australia and was obviously taken prior to the commencement of Day 1 (yours truly is 2nd to the right about the middle row, leaning forward, ironically the way I looked when I finished the event after three days and 515 kilometres, but for other reasons lol) The start of joining a new family, a family called “Ultraman”.  If there was ever an inspiration of an athlete in this photo, it is of the guy in the front 3rd from left with no legs.  Andre Kajlich was a true inspiration to us all, athletes, support crews, race organisers and the public spectating the event.  He finished after three days, well ahead of me.  What an inspiration!

Regards UltraHumps! (John Humphries)

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