Category Archives: Transition

TriAddict on pre-race examination…

It happened: I went out for my run. So I went on and… as promised had a look at Challenge Roth swim exit…

Ok, maybe too cold for Challenge right now… then again here we have the bike transition zone:

So on I ran towards the area of Rothsee Triathlon Festival. Rothsee is still covered with thin ice – almost looks like my cold experience on the sprint race last year.

Looking straight forward I look at the bike transition of the Olympic distance race and along the run course:

Returning back to Hilpoltstein I had some interesting talks, met Coach Ralf and his wife afterwards and had a chat with Claudi in the “Zwinger” – if you ever come to Challenge Roth: go there for dinner, have a beer and tell her, where you learnt about her.

And for the Americans looking for medieval flair:

Or some seats for guests:

After all I had nothing to eat today and so I made sure to leave fully sated. Anyway my training today hurt me, but I am happy I finished it nonetheless. What a grand day.



TriAddict – Last impact week – tapering phase inc.

@Michael – On a short sidenote beforehand after our talk in the lake: drop me a note if you like to since I got a suggestion for your issue.

So tapering phase is incoming for me. It is a weird feeling – the fitness of my lifetime and I am hungry for more, much much more. Yet before elaborating on my current status I received an Email… (translation below for the English only readers):

Hallo Martin,

Deine Teilnahme an der Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman Championship 2012 ist hiermit bestätigt.

Veranstaltung: Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship (de) 2012
Datum: 08.07.2012 – 00:00


Dear Martin,

we herby confirm your application to Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman Championship 2012.

event: Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championship (de) 2012
date: 08.07.2012 – 00:00

So it is done, no turning back. 8th of July 2012 it is. I am not sure yet if I should be happy or cry. Cry simply because I am aware of all the pain to follow in the year to come. Others train 16+ years for this and I try to do it after 2 years and still after my first year I feel like a newbie. Well actually I am a newbie still.

Anyways taper phase is incoming. I am happy for taper phase because I feel my legs need rest to regenerate. Especially the pain in my thighs on the backside faded for my left leg but increased for my right leg – ouch. Interval running training has its issues and drawbacks for sure in my weight class. While at it:

  1. Right now my weight drops like ice melting in the sunshine. Since I got a scale here at home now I can verify that I lose almost 1.5 kg (app 3lbs.) per day. I blame mostly my running training, which is high impact. Yes I love it.
  2. As mentioned above my right thigh is painful, while my left thigh now is ok – the same pain in my left thigh left me 2 days ago and now it feel just grand.
  3. Today I was swimming in the lake where my next competition is. I tried to swim approximately the course for race day. First turn wasn’t good I had to stop freestyle and continue breast stroke for 3-8 strokes about 5 times since I am not used yet to a race rhythm. On second turn suddenly it was ok and I could quite easily swim the whole race distance in freestyle. Also I learned that my muscles easily do the distance, taking breath is still a major issue – were it better I could swim a lot faster. Overall I blame my past as a heavy chain smoker. It becomes drastically better, almost day by day but its far away from perfect.
  4. Running – wow that discipline almost frightened me until a few weeks ago, then it became hard work and now… I feel like I can fly. Depending on the time of day, overall fitness etc. I can make tempo runs. I also learned to play with my tempo and my pulse and feel the power surging through my legs. It feels incredible. By now I am aware that running is my major issue on race day, but… I am much more curious on Ironman next year. If my improvements in running go on like this, it might be a blast doing the marathon next year.
  5. Ohh well, biking – let us be frank I am not much on my bike. In everyday life I do everything on my bike and this for sure ensures that I keep my fitness. Swimming and running are more important and that’s right now exactly the way of my training plan.
  6. Transition – so far I did not care much for transition, but it seems I have to. In the next few days I am training a lot, like leading my bike by saddle, jumping on bike eventually with shoes in cleats, bike to run,… Swim to bike I actually trained the swim exit part – I believe to be really good in getting my wetsuit off, keeping goggles and cap in the wetsuit. Onto bike is my issue. We will see on the rest and decide 4 days before race day what I will do: conservative or feeling comfortable with those optimizations.
  7. Did I tell my right thigh hurts? Right in this second while typing – grrr cant await tapering.

So Coach keeps telling me: all I want you is to finish, forget about your wager. Well I do believe I will win my wager 1st turn, but it is actually not only for that. The better I am on race day, the more I can say thank you to all involved. And maybe deep down I need the pressure to give the last quantum I need to be good for my weight class and situation. I am quite sure to finish, but I hope I can finish in a way that I feel like crawling once I pass the finish line. Not before, but directly when I pass it.

That’s what I truly hope: knowing and feeling I gave everything I could – never less.



Challenge Roth exhibition: fatsmoker2ironman finally got it by 2XU Europe

You know all my issues on my neoprene suit? Weight still dropping but… my lower legs are plain too massive. So?  What did  I do?

Challenge Roth 10th anniversary band

Challenge Roth 10th anniversary band

Correct! I went to the Challenge Roth exhibition where all those high end manufacturers got their stuff and tell what they can do (or might try to do).

So word is: I directly went for 2XU and – lucky me – CEO of European marketing partner was there too. Frankly I was almost sure they  can’t help. Now here is what happened:

  1. fatsmoker: I need a Neoprene suit!
  2. 2XU: Sure we got!
  3. fatsmoker: Ooook even for my lower legs?
  4. 2XU: Gooosh — those aren’t  thighs but lower legs? Never saw that!
  5. (I see those daily).
  6. 2XU: Let me look, try this one…
2XU R:1 Race Neoprene

2XU R:1 Race Neoprene

Holy… Moly! That beast was tough to put on, but it fit! Minutes later I am in the pool swimming and it fits like a second skin – perfect. And to top it off: superb discount on Challenge exhibition. Putting it of for transition was a matter of seconds.

I admit I am a believer now. Thank you Matthias for that pricing and to Oliver Herzig, who helped me to find the correct one, to put it on and who accepted to be wet from the guy in the wetsuit, who jumped into the wet water (or something along that line). Thank you both of you!



fatsmoker2ironman – “test race day” coming up

This Saturday is my first test race. It is just a sprint distance triathlon (750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run). Main purpose is to get a feel for a race.

Rothsee Triathlon Logo

Rothsee Triathlon Logo

The past few days were full with ups and downs considering where I am coming from. Let us start with the downs:

  • Swimming: I am far behind  my personal goal in swimming. Considering my start, most people say: “Shut up, you are good!”. Truth be told: I know I can be good enough to swim much faster, but I lack the time to do so today. It is impossbile to train more often than once or twice a day and basically doesn’t make sense either. So I have to accept my current swim performance.
  • Swimming: My neoprene suit doesn’t fit me properly yet. I can almost put it on by now, still my lower legs are too huge still. Race day will be in a Triathlon short only.
  • Bicycle: I can not put my carbon wheels on my bike. My weight still doesn’t allow me to.
  • Running: My running sucks still. I am now exactly at 7 min/km – I would almost like to cry for running that slow.
  • There are more severe downs, which I can’t and won’t list for now here. Simply since those are too frustrating and i didn’t get over those yet.

Now for the ups:

  • Medical/doctor: More by chance this happened… I felt my spine not being 100% in order, so I went to a chiro practician. Someone a good friend recommended to me. Turned out that I know that doctor very well and that he is an expert! Expert like athlete himself (one of the best Karateka in Germany, well-trained for years), specialized in chiro practice and consultant for a lot of high-end athletes, especially Triathletes. So I met him and he gave me the super-special-treatment, when we recognized each other. Despite other patients he took the time and simply removed all my major and minor issues with muscles, movement, bones, spine, joints,… My whole movement, muscle coordination,… drastically improved since then. Incredible! Unbelievable what an expert can do. It’s too much to list – issues he completely removed.
  • Swimming: I made it! Not only can I swim the distance, but I can swim even more by now. Even 2 km shouldn’t be an issue. Difficult yes, but doable.
  • Swimming: Each time I swim, my PR improves a lot. Almost 10% each time. Yes that is temporary and due to daily swim training. Yet it is extremely cool!
  • Swimming: I am calm in swimming and very confident in my technique. The training with Coach X pays 1,000 %. That combo of Coach Ralf and Coach X paired with my doctors is probably one of my best choices ever!
  • Bicycle: Today I made a test run on the race course for Saturday. 34:40 is the best from last year winner for three times that course total. My test run – while I felt bad overall today – for one time the course finished at 12:07. That time today includes front winds, crosswinds, some pedestrians and other people stopping me from being faster. Assuming I can enter at that rhythm – then I can rock the bike part. Am content when I am in the middle of pack, but I do believe I might be able to make TOP 5 in bike time. At least I will try.
  • Bicycle: I love my TT helmet 😀
  • Running: Yes, my running sucks as mentioned in the downs.  But I feel better and more confident than ever when running. It is now easy to run in higher pulse, while being faster. I can control it without feeling bad – feels more like a drug.

That being said: Saturday is a test. My race strategy will be:

  1. Swimming: Considering my improvements the past few weeks, i will start slow and increase pace starting at app. 100m. When 50% of those 750m are done, I check my remaining power. If ok, I will try to rock the swim. Am content finishing with 18 minutes (no improvement), I would love to finish slightly below 16 minutes. I think I could do that, but I will not push my luck.
  2. Transition: Since I am swimming in my running shorts… This will simply be a put-my shirt, helmet and glasses on and run off with my bike. Nothing fancy.
  3. Bicycle: Due to my training I know that I can regenerate fast – extremely fast. Also I don’t use my legs really in swimming, so I figure I start the bike part already fit and powerful. If I am right then I will explode – speedwise. If not then I will be middle of pack. We shall see. Point is: I will be racing on my bike as if it is the last discipline – every shot of power I got into the bike-part. Actually I am racing in training like that too, even if I run afterwards.
  4. Transition 2: I trained it a lot at home. Can put shoes off on the bike and enter finish line that way. No issue – easy-going.
  5. Running: Mentally I am prepared to crawl on all fours through the finish line. Practically  I assume to be running in slow motion. Pointless to save power for running. I can run 7:10 min a km anytime even exhausted, but never was faster than 7:00 min/km. So it is pointless to care about it. My running plain sucks big time. Nuff said!

I am still preparing my pre-race strategy: Most points are already known and planned, but eg. I am not sure on what I eat the day before as well as on race day. Got an idea but not decided yet.

Should I finish below 1:30 hours, then you will see me surprised BIG TIME! Should I make some high-end bike time, then you won’t be able to carve the smile off my face for days or weeks even.

Yet I hope to have fun.

Yours truly


Crawling – I did it again…

Yikes! The tough schedule already pays for me! I get my work done and go for training.

Today: almost 5 hours training in a row. I feel like crawling! Coach Ralf prepared it the tough way and I …? Complied and added to it. Almost 2 hours on my bike, running directly afterwards and off to swim with some more biking later on.

Am I crazy? Actually I feel only exhausted! Plan for tomorrow and the day after looks mind-boggling. Let’s see how I do.

Improvements? There are SOME!

  1. Running directly after biking is a lot better now. When I am running directly after hours on the bike I am as fast as I am in base endurance training (which is 10% slower).
  2. Swimming my worst enemy seems to be close to surrender 😀 I am away from my goal to make it perfect, but accept for now that I am – for now – a left side breather. Instead of perfection I am hitting distances, distances, distances. This abides very well. I am confident to report 1km+ swim soon (TM) !
  3. Truth be told: my belly gets smaller – I can really see it. Figure today’s workout frightened my belly so it had to take cover 😀

Totally exhausted but in a good mood – tomorrow we go for the rough part, which Coach Ralf prepared – let’s see.

Yours truly


Show must go on!

That’s the tune, which is in my head right now. My workload the past few days (weeks) was ridiculously heavy. As a reader you will always realize this, when I post way less. So I didn’t post several days – guess you can imagine now.

When working that much, my amount of training units drop naturally, but the few moments I do… At those times I push the limit. By then training is there to clear my head and get rid of any other thought. Eg. Sunday: 1h bike and 30 minutes run, directly after each other. I had to take it slow but didn’t. Instead I made it a PR. The bike tour, which takes me normally 1:20 – 1:30 hours including traffic lights… that one took me 1:03 on Sunday including traffic – let’s say I pushed it a little bit… Within 1:40 minutes after the bike tour was done, I already was outside running (same enthusiasm, but without a stop watch).

I wanted to crawl once I returned home. I didn’t, but instead I was happy.


Transition #1

Today my first transition ever, but…!?!


Ok so I was on my tour with my bike and for today was my first training unit which included a “transition bike to run”: a full unit on bike, fast transition to run and 5-10 minutes running. Now that’s easy, a walk in the park (or so I thought)…


My bike unit I did in all patience. After about 1:30 hours I was close to home, so

  1. I opened my bike shoes,
  2. slipped out of my shoes,
  3. placed my feet on my shoes to pedal the last few meters,
  4. in front of the house I jumped off my bike,
  5. ran barefoot (ok with socks) to the entrance of the house with my bike,
  6. jumped into my apartment,
  7. put running shoes on and
  8. went off running!

What a cool and fast transition! Wait?!? What is that on my head? It is… my bike helmet…. ohhh my god… back home, bike helmet into the apartment and again off we go…


Hopefully there is another day.




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