Leaving the cold and smoggy Shanghai winter into blazingly hot, blue skies and white clouds of Subic Bay in the Philippines is a major transition for the body to make. Luckily I have a week plus before the race. How can you make the transition:
Weather – heat. Stay hydrated, salt tablets and judging electrolytes needed for race. Spending time outside at the same time of day as your race time. Limit it as this can be a really hot time of day. Don’t get sunburnt. Make sure you have a way to cover up during the race. This may be thinking about type of tri suit or Under-armour heat top or calf compression guards.
Food – Seems that fried chicken is the national dish. All the supermarkets have mostly packaged and processed food. Find the fruit stalls, try out the bananas to test for use in race. As I’m going through a lower carbohydrate diet and increasing healthy fats, I found a place to buy coconut cream. Still aware to keep carbohydrate stores topped off and to test race food strategy.
Race – did a recce of the bike course. This is going to be a major challenge as the hills are steep, long and continuous. I’m going to have to adjust my expectations for the race. Previously was looking at around 3hrs on the bike but now it may be closer to 3:30 given that I haven’t ridden long distances at all for a long time. Run also has a lot of elevation although it seems like it’s mostly covered in jungle.
Training – keep the exercise ticking over. Found a 50m pool at WOW World in Subic Bay which was good, outside and not too busy for 220 pesos. Don’t overdo it and remember to rest your body with lots of sleep and keeping off your feet in the days before.
Briefing – Write down where and when to bike check, register and attend briefings. When the carbo parties are and the post race awards. Write down the shuttle bus schedule so you know when / where to be. For example in this race, there is only one bus leaving at 0400 near my hotel to the race venue!
Looking forward to this race although it will likely be the toughest race I’ve ever done. I haven’t raced for 15 months and would like to test out a low fat approach to the race which means less gels and more real food like protein bars and bananas.