Monday 6 March 2017

2017 ... A year for change

As I am currently ready for my first race this weekend I guess I should take this opportunity to post an update on what I Have been doing since the start of the year and my plan for the rest of 2017.

I am currently on my my second training camp with Origin Performance, this is my new training group overseen by my new Coach Ian O’Brein, but first, I want to give a mention to a few people who have helped me up to this point.

Since I went to University back in 2010 I was coached by Blair Cartmell, he is someone who I can’t thank enough for all the time and effort that he put into me over the years; a friend and a coach, someone I have so much respect for.
A special mention must also go to Triathlon Scotland and everyone involved who welcomed and accommodated me, so much more than any other federation would have. I always felt like part of the team; being invited to training camps, traveling to races and giving me so many more opportunities than I ever would have had staying at home.

A final mention must go to all my friends and training partners in Stirling, I’m not going to name names, but they all know whom they are. I believe that the people you surround yourself with, have a massive impact on you and I couldn’t have asked for a closer nit group of friends who I was able to train and socialise with everyday.

You might be starting to wonder why on earth I decided to move away if everything was so good but some times change is needed to keep things fresh and to avoid becoming stale.
I graduated from University in the summer of 2015 and I decided that I would stay in Stirling for one year after, to train full time and to see if it was good enough even when wasn’t tied down to that location.
As things happened last year I didn’t really spend that much time in Stirling due to being a partner for Aileen and Bryan leading into Rio Olympics; it involved a lot of training and gallivanting around the globe. One draw back to this was that the majority of my flights were being booked from Dublin, resulting in me having to travel home before flights and returning to home afterwards, all these days/weeks either side of training all added up and therefore I wasn’t really in any one place long enough to be settled.

I was lucky enough that the training I was doing was still very good as I was getting hard blocks when away and able to rest and tick over when I wasn’t on camp, although it did lack consistence, something I am striving for this season.

With that year away from Stirling (as much as I love the place and the people), I couldn’t face another long cold winter in Scotland. The appeal of somewhere further afield started to become rather appealing, somewhere new to keep things fresh, as well as being far enough away from home that the desire to pop back so often was no longer there not to mention warmer climates.

I decided to join Origin Performance as I had actually trained with them for a few weeks last summer when Bryan and Aileen went down to Rio (after our training camp in Florida) and I needed a place to stay in America leading into Edmonton WTS. I enjoyed the dynamic of the squad, the different approach to training and exciting prospect of training somewhere new.

I traveled over to Arizona at the start on January to join the team and train out of Tucson, Arizona for the month. Great training in fantastic weather was a perfect combination to build my fitness back up after a long season and a relaxed end to the year. It will take a while to get used to training with a new coach but things have started off well and I am currently happy with my current form and fitness.
As I write this I am currently on my second camp in Gainesville, Florida preparing for my 1st race of the season, which will be a Continental Cup (doubling up as CAMTRI North American Championships) in Sarasota, Florida this weekend. The aim of this race is to start to the season off with a good performance, somewhere that will require little travel and a perfect opportunity to test my fitness early season.

After this race I will continue to build fitness and speed, leading into bigger races at the start of May with Chengdu World Cup and Yokohama WTS. Here I will look to replicate some of the performances I had last year but with much more consistency.

I will soon post here a more in depth plan for the season and a race report on next week but I will end now as I am sure boredom has started to set in reading my ramblings.