My Ironman Journey Continues: Gods, Gadget and Oil

ironman-logo-iconThe Greeks probably had a god of triathlon. S/he was probably called Brownlee, Jorgensen or Friel. Whatever the name, s/he spoke to me today in a dream AND answered my one prayer.

The prayer was answered in a single commandment:

Thou Shalt Carry Magnesium Oil and Spread Kindness and Goodness Throughout the Course

A Salutory Tale

I mentioned before that one of my worries of catastrophic failure in ‘the event’ lies in cramp. I get it on the inside of my thigh above the knee. I’d google the correct muscle name to sound really intelligent but we both know better than to be fooled by the pretence of a bit of googling. I’ve suffered from cramp there, and in other places, over the years but after putting in proper training and eating properly and stretching properly it became, mostly, a thing of the past. However moving up to HIM and, by inference, IM has enabled the dreaded demon to resurface.

At my last HIM I managed to finish without cramping only to sit down in transition afterwards to put on some clothing and then roll around the floor screaming in agony whilst people either ignored me or laughed. After about a minute of laughing someone came to help and sprayed the afflicted area with magnesium oil spray. Within a second the pain had gone.

The kind man was called Sammy and, on reflection when I went back to thank, him he had mysteriously disappeared. Also on reflection I thought, “was he Sammy the Triathlon Samaritan?” (Sorry I’m trying to keep the religious theme going, bear with me 🙂 ).

Anyway I’ve been saving up my training to produce a day like today when I knew I was in cramp territory. I bought some magnesium oil  year and today was the day to use it. The cramp didn’t initially come so I started to do a few post-exercise stretches. Voila. There it was. Walked around a bit. Did something else. Stretched again AND WHIPPED OUT THE OIL. Voila…it was gone. Immediamenti.

I don’t care that this oil is supposed to help more elderly people with night-time cramps. I don’t care if I look like an idiot running around Bolton town centre carrying it. I’m going to.

Now, I’ve been thinking.

“Steady on,” you say.

I seem to recall a Brownlee helping another Brownlee during an ITU race recently. Helping a fellow competitor IS legal in IM I believe. The god of triathlon spoke to me to say that I should carry around the aforesaid Magnesium oil and spray the sufferers of Bolton. So if you’ve ever wondered who I am just look out for the idiot being punched by some limping, unfortunate soul who is shouting “Don’t spray me that you weirdo. BDG&$^$F off”

So I guess I am Magnesium-deficient. I thought my diet was good. Maybe not good enough.


In other news

I’ve temporarily stopped using my 920XT.

Shock! Horror!

The Suunto Spartan Ultra is now my main running watch plus STRYD. For a while anyway (Forerunner 935 beckons). If I need more GPS accuracy, for some random testing reason, I’ll whip out the SPARTAN SPORT as that seems to be inexplicably slightly more accurate – CERTAINLY more accurate than almost any Garmin.

Shame about the features

The Edge 820 is staying on the bike and its touchscreen is annoying me less and less recently. I might even soon be at the point where I’d recommend it to a friend. Maybe. Perhaps.

Seamlessly linking the Edge to the cramp occurrence…

Here is the 3+ hours of cramp-inducing, turbo boredom (+little run for cramp inducement at the end) with the Edge+HRM-TRI. Overlaid is a cheap-as-chips Polar M200 with optical HR. Pretty good. Actually it wasn’t too boring as I managed to watch Scotland vs. Wales in the 6 nations Rugby at the same time in the gym. Towards the end I had to go over my LTHR (about 161 when cycling I think) just because I haven’t done for so long and I wanted to make sure the LTHR was still there. It was. Phew.

My Ironman Secret

Each post ends with a secret. I’ve met Stuart Hayes and had a chat. Nice guy. I sometimes am in the same gym as him and even swam in the same lane as him a while back. Now you know. He did pass me a few times, I hasten to add, but not too many as I don’t think he was going that fast. I also once swam in the same lane as some American Olympian runner but I can’t remember his name – he was a really good swimmer … surprisingly; for a runner.

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