Days 6 & 7: Our Last Days :(

We both wanted to make the most of our last full day, so we had an early night after making only the 2nd round of the pool competition the previous evening against prepubescent rich kids

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(I blame the cheap sangria)

We got up early; Kyle for his long run and me for my long cycle BUT I never realised everyone had the same idea and I never thought to reserve a bike.

Absolutely gutted (I was REALLY looking forward to a 4-5 hour bad boy), I ran back to the room hoping Kyle had not left yet, and I joined him for his long run. I only managed to keep up for about 4 miles before he bolted off. I managed 12.5 (with 8 at a steady state pace of around 7min mile in sand, and 1 up the ridge again – I wanted to see the pretty views!) and he did 15.5 – he only arrived back at the flat about 10 mins after me!

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I went to the pool to do a straight 1.9km swim (the half iron distance) to see what kinda time I’d get – just under 28 so I was happy with that!

We got changed and rode up to Tinajo for some tapas (one of the best tapas we have ever had!) and THEN SOMETHING BIG HAPPENED. Kyle taught me how to drink while riding my bike!!!!!!!! Half an hour was all I needed!! I was so so happy!

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(Scott you better be proud of me!)

No time for sunbathing and before we knew it, it was time for the sunset (after another body bike class of course!)!

We just picked at some nibbles and wine from the shop, got packed up and headed to bed early – our flight left at 7am the next day and we decided (perhaps stupidly) that we would get up at 4.30am for our last run around the lagoon!

…no pics of course – I wouldn’t know how to work a phone at that time in the morning! I believe we did 2.5 miles at around 8.40 pace – look out Bolt! It did make us feel better and more awake for our flight!

It was 16.5 degrees during our run that morning.

When we landed in Edinburgh, it was 1 degree.

I was freeeeeeezing! The plan was to head to Glasgow to try their Christmas market, and we stopped at Strathclyde Country Park to do another 6 miles because the weather was so crisp and refreshing we couldn’t resist!

The markets were actually pretty pathetic, so we headed to Hard Rock Cafe and did some Christmas shopping instead!

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Back on the road, we got home around 7 – enough time to sort out washing and get back to reality 😦

It was an AMAZING HOLIDAY!!


Questions for you:

Ever been on a training holiday/camp? Where? How was it?

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Day 5: Broken again

As predicted, I woke up in more pain than the rest of the week – we had both slept in until 11am!!!! I NEVER sleep past 8! Clearly we needed it!

After taking a while to get breakfast and sorting ourselves out, we did a ridge run; one of the most beautiful runs I have ever done!

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Because we set off at the hottest point of the day, I was desperate to go swimming afterwards!

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(muuuuuch better!)

I went to a body bike class in the evening while Kyle rocked a 10km – he won in 33 mins after eating a massive “Ironman” sandwich from the restaurant and then we watched the sunset with some sangria!

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Day 4: Long Cycle, Swim, Run Sesh & Golf

I struggled to get out of bed again on the Friday – I think my body was just telling me with all the training I need the recovery! But I forced myself up to get my cycle out of the way, using sunbathing in the afternoon as an incentive!

I looked at the Ironman map and chose to head to the south of the island for a change, heading past the volcano, over to Yaiza, and a loop through El Golfo.

What a ride!! It wasn’t really that mentally tough because I was taking everything in, but physically it was so hard! The map I was looking at didn’t show the hills!! Kudos to all you Lanza Ironman finishers!!!

I went through Timanfaya National Park

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Then up to the volcano (a long, steep, climb), followed by a steep descent.

Yaiza was nice – they have an aloe vera museum there which I thought was pretty cool (sad, I know)

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When I headed to El Golfo, it was on a road that followed the beach and the waves crashing again the cliffs were stunning! I loved every second of it!

Once I finished my loop, I headed to  Playa Blanca and en route there was a newly wed couple getting wedding photos done on the cliffs! I would have taken a pic but I thought that would be creepy. However, that does show how pretty it was!

Back to Yaiza was a long, slow slog. The wind was in my face the whole way and the road quality was awful – it HURT. I took a gel there and checked my average speed and it was 28km/h! Yay me!! With the wind and hills I was pretty pleased with that on a borrowed bike.

I’m glad I took the gel when I did because I had to go back up the hill I powered down, which took ages!! I did overtake quite a few people though and when I got to the top I HAD to take a pic of the dozens of camels I saw together!

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I am pleased to say I hit no wall and my speed was faster than on other long rides!

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When I got back, I went straight to the track for 2 miles at a comfortable pace, and Kyle spots me and joins me! I felt great! Managed about 7 minute pace so I’ll take that.

Then we had a nice big lunch and hit the sun loungers for some book time and sunbathing!

Kyle had a sesh to do in the afternoon so, being the crazy person I am, I wanted to partake in this sesh! His set was 8x1km @ 10km pace with 2 mins rest. I opted to do 800s instead of 1km so we finished around the same time. His 1st 2 were done in 3 minutes; mine is 2.56ish. Wowsers he is fast. We realised we both went out too fast so decided to do 6 reps and try and maintain the speed. He rocked it! He was so tired at the end of it, I ran to the shop to get him some chocolate milk and water. He couldn’t move!

He met me at the pool, where he watched me do 1,400m easy with a few sprints around the time of the sunset!

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I felt great!

We then went straight to the golf area to perfect our swings!

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(safe to say I’ll never be a golfer)

After such a productive day for the two of us (Kyle managed 17 miles total that day!), we went to the gym to foam roll/stretch, then watched a movie in bed (A Million Ways to Die in the West – highly recommended!) – I knew I would be sore in the morning!

Day 3: Broken athletes and facing open water fear

On Thursday we both woke up broken…. we were so so tired and our muscles were so fatigued. The problem was we both knew an easy run/walk would help us but we didn’t have the mindset to do it! After crawling out of bed and taking approximately 7 minutes to put on one pair of shorts (oh, the pain!), we headed out towards the beach for an easy-on-the-mind out and back run on the sand trails.

We were flying barely making it under 9 minute miles, but we felt SO MUCH BETTER afterwards! Glad we forced ourselves out the door for 8.5 miles 🙂

We then went straight to the pool where I played pacemaker for Kyle’s sprint set I gave him (he was buzzing after winning the triathlon so wanted a swim set to get him faster!) 10×50 as fast as maintainable with 30 secs rest. I put in my pullbuoy and paced him to make them all under 42. Bearing in mind this was long course, I was so surprised at how amazing he did!! His last one was a 39!! So much for being a broken man that morning! I need to watch my back!

In exchange for pacing him, he agreed to go in a kayak while I attempted open water swimming in the lagoon straight afterwards. I HATE open water. I have done it once in my life and this was captured beforehand:

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(a picture is worth a thousand words)

The above race didn’t go so well – I swam the wrong way and ended up in the reeds. I couldn’t see a thing! Luckily, I ended up 3rd overall out the water and 1st female, but it was ~6mins of sheer fear and pain!

Anyway, this open water swim was neither in a freezing Scottish loch nor at night in the dark:

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(blame K for the blurriness)

The visibility still wasn’t great (about as great as that picture up there) but I practiced lifting my head out of the water to see the buoys to aim for and that seemed to work. I did the half ironman course (untimed) but the wind made me feel invincible on the way out but the way back I swallowed soooooooo much water from the waves!

We chilled by the pool after lunch, but the sun got a bit too much for the pale skinned Kylie boy:

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(a jacket covering his face with sunglasses for good measure…amn’t I a lucky girl?)

When it got cooler, we hired bikes and did a really easy cycle to explore!

Then we ended up having dinner at a very posh restaurant in La Santa itself10859759_10154938515735644_1600495680_n

I wish we took pictures of all the food we got! Mixed fish platter with all the fish local to the area (sardines, amberjack, calamari and something that looked like mackerel), beetroot risotto, falafel, eton mess and some tasty sangria! We were so full afterwards we took a walk around the harbour

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Then we got chased by a stray rat dog so that ended that.

Day 2: Overtaken with 2km to go, by my own BF nonetheless. CLS Triathlon.

Another early start to Tuesday (attempted to get up at 7am, however it was nearer 7.30 again) for the Club La Santa Triathlon. The race consisted of a 400m swim in one of their new long course pool (they now have 3!), a 15.5km cycle to Tinajo (where we cycled yesterday), around the town’s roundabout, back down the hill, and a 4.6km run back along a similar route as the previous day’s half marathon.

After assessing the distances, we knew it would be close between us, so Kyle and I placed a bet! Whoever lost had to take a dip in the freezing sea at night! The race was ON!

It was so well organised! The timing mats were so quick to set up and there was so much support along the way!

There were quite a lot of people who had entered, which I found quite intimidating to begin with as Club La Santa does specialise in triathlete training/workshops and facilities for the pros, but then again do you know that phrase all the gear, no idea? Well that’s what I was hoping for, along with assuming the pros were all doing actual real hardcore training around the island. I was just using it as a fun race to see where I was at with other triathletes, and also from a cycling perspective how I would cope with racing UPHILL for nearly 8km!

Anyway, on to the race. We got to choose our own lanes but based on time. Kyle is a pretty decent swimmer for a skinny guy ( 😉 ) so I dragged him into my lane, and another girl joined us. I chose the lane at the side so we were closer to transition. We all set off at once and I sprinted the 1st length to try and get a lead. I led the whole way through the swim (even beating the relay swimmers!) and as soon as I touched I jumped out the pool and ran towards transition while taking off my cap, goggles and tri suit (don’t worry people I had clothes on underneath). I stepped on my hoody to dry my feet (forgot a towel – oops), put on my helmet and cycle shoes, took my borrowed bike off the rack and ran to the car park to mount.

Swim time: 5.58 (Kyle’s time 7.19)

It was weird being in the lead by so much (noone was even in transition by the time I left for the car park), but I do better as a chaser as opposed to chasee so I just tried to keep my head down and turn the pedals fast. There was a downhill for the 1st km so I used that for momentum into the next 7km hill up to the roundabout. I even attempted standing up on my bike at some points! My aim was to not be overtaken on the uphill and hold on for the downhill! I succeeded! I was cautious going round the roundabout (still working on dem skillz, bruv) and about a quarter mile down the hill I see Kylie Babez! From the previous day’s cycle, I knew I could beat him on the descent, however he caught up A LOT on the uphill (I nearly lapped him in the swim!), so I just kept my position low and pedalled like a crazy person! I didn’t even smile for the photographer – that’s when you know I’m in the zone!

Uphill to the car park to demount and back to transition I ran! Non-tie laces are definitely the way forward as it took me ages to tie my running shoes (I have weird thumbs so that doesn’t help either…)

Ran through the timing mats and it was on to the run.

Cycle time: 28.51 (Kyle’s time 28.48…booooo!!!)

Just passing through the car park, I see Kyle pulling in. Nooooo!!! It took me approximately 2.7 seconds to calculate that there was no way I could maintain my lead (he must have been around 2 mins behind me) – he is a sub-15 5ker and I haven’t broken 18 yet! Unless he absolutely died, I knew I had lost the bet! Immediately I shouted “AWWWW CRAAAAP”, he heard me and laughed! He thought I’d forgot to take my helmet off or something (he knows what I’m like) but it was because I knew I was the loser!

I wasn’t really a loser, though. I mean I was winning the race by quite a margin OVERALL after only around half an hour or so of racing! I reassessed my goal to not be overtaken by him until at least the turnaround point.

My legs were a little tired from pushing the uphill, so I just focussed on upping my cadence. There were more spectators at this race compared with the half marathon, so that kept me going!

And guess what? I made the turnaround and he was about a metre behind me!

But that’s not the best part – the photographer was right at the turnaround point and captured us running together!!

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(notice no one is to be seen! we were leading by lots TOGETHER! Yay!)

We agreed we should probably stop talking and push the last 2km of the race, so he flew off as if I was standing still and I just played chaser again! The race, again, ends on the track, so as I was about to enter the track, he was crossing the line! Lots of people were there cheering him on, which encouraged me to really nail the last 400m!

When I finished, people were surprised I was so close to the winner and congratulated me but I announced that I was disappointed because I lost to – this time only (!) – the better half, so they all laughed! Kyle I will get you next time!

Run time: 17.47 (Kyle’s time 14.54…….boooooooooo again!)

Overall times:

Kyle – 51.01

Deb – 52.36

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I won the ladies’ race by TWENTY TWO MINUTES!!!! Kyle won by 3.5mins which is still amazeballs for someone who never swims or cycles!

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He beat me fair and square 😦

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(told you I had weird thumbs. see above)

Day 1: the Half Asleep Half Marathon

After we arrived in the evening, we unpacked and did a quick run around the lagoon (or at least, that’s what I was told. It was pitch black). We then hit the salad bar and watched some of the entertainment, while getting slightly carried away on the local wine we were recommended:

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Their local wine is made completely differently to other countries in that it is all made by hand and the grape grows in the volcanic ash. It leaves a zingy kind of bubbly taste in your mouth – we were addicted and must have gone through 5 or 6 bottles throughout the week (#realathletes). It was around 8 Euro in the local market, but was nearly 20 Euro in Duty Free, but I have paid more for less – it was delicious! The white was our favourite but they did red and rose too!

We got to sleep around midnight and our alarms were set for 7am to get ready for their half marathon (the run course of Lanzarote’s Half Ironman) which started at 7.45. Unfortunately, my phone – much like myself – was confused and didn’t know where it was or what time zone it was in, so my alarm went off at 6am. Kyle double checked, called me a douchebag, and we fell back asleep only to wake up about 90 minutes later – uh oh!

No time for breakfast, forgetting about water, and toothpaste still on my face, we got changed and headed to the track. Luckily, they were still handing out chips! I couldn’t believe what I had just signed up for – I was sooooo tired! I was a mess (Kyle can confirm this) and people there were all in the race gear warming up on the track, and we were standing like zombies!

The race is 3 laps, running to the town of La Santa and back. Pretty monotonous route, but I like mentally ticking distances off so it didn’t bother me too much!

The gun went off, and Kyle and I just laughed at how ridiculously tired we were, ran together for about a mile (barely getting under 7 minutes), then he decided he should probably go a bit faster, and I tried to follow suit. He went flying ahead and by the 3rd mile was in the lead. I was just happy to be alive, and anyone I passed was a bonus.

My first lap of 3 was my slowest, but then I woke up a bit, started to have fun (some of the runners were cheering and we were high fiving as we passed them on the out and back route), and thought I would try for my FIRST EVER NEGATIVE SPLIT RACE. The rest of the miles were under 6.30 so I’ll take that.

Kyle opted to stop after 2 laps (he didn’t want to push himself too hard on the first day considering his recent injuries) so he played spectator (after beasting a 5.47 per mile average!). I didn’t really pay attention to my splits, so thought anything around the 90 minute mark would be good. That meant I had plenty time to stop for water, run over to Kyle and throw it in his face before continuing on to the final lap. Maybe I should have pushed it a bit harder, huh?

Little did I know I would finish with an 85 minute half (I was trying to catch up with the 1st female on the last lap who was flying in 83 minutes!) – Average of 6.33 per mile.

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(Proof of my first ever negative split!)

Afterwards, we had breakfast, went for a wee swim then chilled by the pool until about 5pm! We went for an easy cycle in the evening, uphill all the way to Tinajo, taking a backpack so we could stop at a supermarket on the way home (the on site market was nearly double the price!). We totalled about 20km with quite a fast average speed (Kyle nailed the uphill – and beat me – so I nailed him on the descent until we got to the market!)

First day complete!