Daily Log 17 June 2011 – Commitment to technical excellence as a way of life

My first time open water swim



OK. After my drama during my swimming session on thursday I’ve had a lot to think about. A few people wrote on my facebook wall that I shouldn’t give up and that I’m actually doing ok. Many many thanks for your encouragement and support. Just to clear away any doubts, I am not going to quit and in fact it has spurred me to find new ways and strategies to do better.

Technique is important not only in sports but in all skills that we want to acquire. When I started training for the triathlon, I said to myself that it doesn’t matter if I’m not be the fastest as long as I’m the one with the best technique. At that time, running was my biggest obstacle and the one with the greatest likelihood of injury especially when I consider that I weighed in at 120kg. That’s a lot of pounding on the knees and ankles so my technique better be good.

Read moreDaily Log 17 June 2011 – Commitment to technical excellence as a way of life

Daily Log 10 April 2011 – Bike and Run

Woo hoo and yee haa. It’s the end of the week and I get to rest tomorrow. This is the week for the bike and I did a lot of cycling this week- 4 work outs.


I pushed hard with the bike today. I created a little programme in my POLAR RS 800:

Phase 1 Warm up 15 minutes
Phase 2 Hard 20km
Phase 3 Warm down 15 minutes

This is significantly a harder workout than I am used to on the bike. Previously I had just cycled for 40 minutes including warm up and warm downs. Warm up and warm downs are extremely important in my workout but should not necessarily factor into my statistics when I want to analyse how I’m doing. The reason is that my warm up and warm down sessions are usually low intensity and factors such as cadence and pace go really out the window. I wanted to determine how long it will take me to bike for 20km at my ‘race pace’.

My POLAR data are as follows:

Read moreDaily Log 10 April 2011 – Bike and Run

Daily Log 2 April 2011 – Swim and Run

My swim coach, Saiful, and me..


I had my third swimming lesson today. The last time I had my swimming lesson was 3 weeks ago and in that lesson we discovered 2 things:

1. That my recovery is sloppy- I lead with my palm instead of my elbow
2. I have to start kicking

So I’ve been going to the pool almost every day for the last 3 weeks doing a lot of drills and a lot of laps. My usual workout consisted of the following:

Superman glide
Slow pace Freestyle
Freestyle with fins
One armed freestyle with fins
Lazy arm
Moderate Freestyle
I’m happy to say that after all those drills, I can now see some results. My recovery is now better and I am leading more with my elbow (not perfect but definitely better).

Read moreDaily Log 2 April 2011 – Swim and Run

Bike setup


Me and my cycling helmet

My cycling is really awkward. My knees will start to bow out after awhile and I am not able to keep it in a smooth motion. Today I decided to look at my bike setup and see if there are any changes I need to make. I am a really big fan of Dr Nicholas Romanov and the POSE Method and have used the POSE Method of running to improve my running technique.

Not many people know but Dr Romanov has developed POSE Method on other disciplines as well including swimming and cycling.

There’s not a lot of resources you can find on the internet regarding POSE Method on swimming and cycling and I haven’t heard of any clinics on either. There’s a book which I intend to order though.

Back to cycling. There’s a really useful video on the POSE Method Youtube Channel regarding setting up the bike which I’ve embedded below. The logic of it stills escapes me but what I do know is that much like POSE running, POSE cycling uses gravity to help us cycle. How? I’m not really sure.

Read moreBike setup

Daily Log 24 March 2011 – Bike and swim


There’s always time to promote myself…

No running today. Today’s focus is on the bike as well as the swimming.


I cycled for 30 minutes on the trainer today, focusing on making each pedal stroke is smooth and keeping my heart rate at a moderate level. A nice gentle warm up for 15 minutes at 65-70% MHR, 10 minutes at 70-75% MHR and spending 5 minutes warming down .

I have to admit that I’m feeling the pressure now. Even the short 10 minutes at 70-75% MHR seemed like an eternity to me and I can feel the onset of fatigue coming on at the end of the 10 minutes getting to the warm down stage felt like paradise. My Polar RS 800 registered just under 8km and an average heart rate at 66% MHR. How on earth am I going to get to 20km and have enough energy to run another 5km?

My cadence averaged at 69 per minute and I know I need to be able to comfortably achieve a cadence of 80-90. I just have to focus on technique and making sure my pedaling is smooth. I need to get the bike refitted I think. I am not feeling too comfortable riding at the moment.

Read moreDaily Log 24 March 2011 – Bike and swim

Training Tip – Warming up and down


My running form..

I’ve made a few changes to my workout routine based on some new stuff I’ve been reading. I’ve read a lot of books in the last few months ranging from traithlons to running to cycling. I’m currently reading ‘The Big Book Of Endurance Training and Racing’ by Dr Phillip Maffetone. There’s a lot of good stuff in there and I like the so called ‘unconventional’ ways of training. This book, along with ‘Brain Training for Runners’ by Matt Fitzgerald as well as Dr Nicholas Romanov’s POSE Method philosophy forms a core part of my own training philosophy. It’s a journey of discovery and there’s always something new to learn and try out.

Read moreTraining Tip – Warming up and down

Daily Log 10 March 2011 – Running drills


How my running changed in 5 months

In 2 days time I will be competing in the FT Day 7km run which is my first running event. I didn’t plan to have any hard runs as I have to rest and taped down to prepare for the event so yesterday I went on the elliptical for some low effort and low impact exercise. Today I decided to go for a gentle easy run and work on some POSE running drills. Technique is all important for me now not only because it reduces the possibility of injury but also because I think improving my running form will give me considerable pace and distance. Besides, I’ve always been envious when I see runners with a smooth and fluid running motion which almost seems effortless. I’m not smooth and look more solid and fluid and definitely you can see the effort written all over my face.

Read moreDaily Log 10 March 2011 – Running drills

Kick kick and more kick then recover


Need air..

I had my second swimming lesson today and the themes were kicking and recovery. I have never been a fan of kicking my legs in the pool. Not because of any technique issues but because its so hard. I find that kicking my legs during swimming is a sure fire way of getting my heart beat up.

Today, my swimming coach, introduced me to the painful world of kicking, specifically kicking while I’m about to glide in the water. I’m a bit clumsy doing it and I’m not able to sustain it for any longer than 25m in the pool. Still, I do know that I am swimming slightly faster because I am kicking.

Read moreKick kick and more kick then recover

Still working on my running technique but there’s some progress…

>Running has always been the one discipline that presents the greatest amount of risk in terms of injury but gives the greatest opportunity for fitness. Ever since I started running about 5 months ago (doesn’t seem so long ago) I’ve taken exceptional care to make sure I run with the proper running technique. I’ve gone to a running clinic, read as many books about it as I can and captured as many pictures and video footages of me running as I can so that improve my running form.

My greatest challenges remains the same as when I first wrote about my running problems. and you can see it in the video below,

You can see the heel strike as well as my legs hitting the ground and my knees hardly bending not to mention my pronating when you see my stride straight on.

Read moreStill working on my running technique but there’s some progress…

Shaping the vessel called Reza


Shameless plug..

Tonight marks the fourth time in as many days that I’ve been to the pool. I think there’s a desperate need for me to have a noticeable improvement in my technique though I don’t think that what I’m doing is of any help. I am swimming at a pace of about 100 secs per 50m and when I get to the end of the length I still find my heart rate to be in the 80% MHR which is still way to high for me to sustain. I really like it to be in the mid 70% MHR then I know I can sustain it for the time that I need to complete the distance.

I still feel the key to all this is to relax. I find myself still tensing up when I swim and the times that I managed to relax, I can feel myself gliding faster.

Read moreShaping the vessel called Reza