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Home > Mallorca Lifestyle > Fit For A Half Ironman!

Fit For A Half Ironman!

My plan was to develop from a complete beginner Triathlete, to a lean mean fighting machine in just 10 weeks (see last month’s article in the Islander).  I have amassed a team of professionals to support & push me to the start line and over the finish line (see the names below).

So – here is an update on my preparation….


Things have moved forward nicely, though it has to be said that work & children holidays hampered some of my training.  Easter was certainly not a plus point in the healthy living stakes.  The temptation of wine tasting with Jaume from Es Verger (www.esverger.es) and the odd wettie or two with Linus and Namalie at Nama (www.restaurantnama.com) has not helped my cause.  Along with Easter eggs, Easter brings friends from the UK and with them comes Gin & Tonics!!!  I have also had huge lower back pain and a problem with my neck has persisted – this has meant that I have had to use the front-mounted snorkel for most of my swimming.


Overall, I would give myself a 8 out of 10 for training and a 3 out of 10 for healthy lifestyle.  The Portocolom Triathlon (www.triathlonportocolom.net) was a real eye opener and a reality check for me…


So as a general rule, my weekly exercise has been…

  • 2-3 x Swimming – still in the pool, with one lesson with Maria
  • 2 x Running – one lesson at Bicimetrics and one training session
  • 2 x Personal training sessions with Flor
  • 2-3 x Bike session (one long, one with intervals & one turbo)


My best 2km pool swim is just under 41 minutes.  Through Miguel Fernandez Miniño at Bimont, I managed to purchase a wet suit.  I sneezed in a 500m swim in the sea at Portixol prior to the triathlon…  What a different world swimming in the sea is – although you are more buoyant, I could never imagine how much water could possibly go up my nose!


My running has been a bit mixed.  For my first 10km test, I ran from the Palma Tennis Club to Es Molinar and back – I managed to run in just under 54 minutes at a pace of 5:23… I was quite pleased with that!  My second was a disaster – I cramped, it was windy and it was a packed Easter Sunday along the waterfront in Palma.


I have been surprised by my biking – the work that Flor has been doing has improved my power… holing 310W for 10minutes has taken me back towards the power I had when I completed the Haute Route in 2016.  What I am obviously lacking is the stamina due to the reduced amount of riding – I am averaging about 150km a week opposed to my normal 250-300km.


My big learnings from my training have been the planning and the physio.

I have booked in all my physio sessions with Nerea up until May.  She has been incredible.  I had underestimated how important the regular attention is.  Over the week you naturally pick up niggles and having that pre-organised appointment really is the way to go.  She has also really encouraged me to relax in my shoulders more during the  running, swimming and biking.  Planning a weekly running lesson at Bicimetrics has been really useful.  It has been useful to be able to check in and see how my own training has gone and how my new running style is progressing.  The use of my arms and kicking up my heels have been the two big ones I need to constantly be reminded of by Helena.


Portocolom Triathlon 


Portocolom is well known as a secret paradise for triathletes and cyclists all year round.  The picturesque natural harbour of Portocolom is the start & end point for the Triathlon.  The swim start is a water start.  Then the bike course takes you through the idyllic Majorcan hills with the spectacular climb to the monastery of Sant Salvador constantly at the back of your mind.  With a length of 4.6 kilometres and 494 meters of altitude, Sant Salvador is one of the most popular and famous climbs on Mallorca and is valued and feared by cyclists and triathletes alike.  The run goes through the beautiful old town of Portocolom, along beaches and small sandy bays up to the turning point at the lighthouse, a  landmark in Portocolom.  There are two distances 111 & 55.5.  The 55.5 is a 500m swim, 50km loop on the bike (with one summit of San Salvador) and a 5km run.  The 111 is a 1km swim, 100km bike (two 50km loops of the above course) and two 5km loops along the waterfront.


My big learnings from my first triathlon…

Forerunner Garmin – understand how it works on Triathlon mode!

Nutrition – don’t drink too much water less than an hour before the start!!!!

The swim – I need to get in the water and prepare my goggles before the swim starts (my goggles totally fogged up).  I breath to the right, so I have to be positioned on the left of the pack.

The bike – plan my nutrition a bit better and buy some tribars… On the flat, those on the Time Trial bikes go at least 5-8kph faster than us on a standard road bike.  Tri bars will help bridge the gap!!!!

Run – Try and relax and get into a more steady speed – at least pretend that I am enjoying it!


The Plan for the next few weeks

  • At least one sea swim a week
  • 3 run sessions a week
  • One session a week that is a bike session followed by a run session


What I have bought so far!

Sea and Pool swimming goggles, front-mounted snorkel, 2 tennis balls, short fins, tight swimming trunks, all in one tri-suit, wet suit, salt tablets, sun visor and waist band to attach my running number to

Garmin Forerunner


What is still on the shopping list 

Tribars, new trainers, Triathlon Bars or TT bike!


A reminder of the team… 

Jakub Pieniazek – Trainer www.theworkshopalma.cc

Joan Horrach – Cyclist Instagram – liveablock_joanhorrach

Maria Fuster Martinez – Swim Coach mariafustermartinez@gmail.com

Flor Martinez – Fitness Instructor www.flormartinez.com

Sandra Wijkman Donovan – Yoga Instructor www.earthyoga.es

Running School Mallorca at Bicimetrics www.bicimetrics.com

Nerea Alonso – Physio www.letsfisio.com

Joe Arrrindell Jr – Osteopath www.carefourhealth.com