Meh, the challenges are miles away! Maybe they’ll never come? :-)

Although the challenges feel like they’re miles away at the moment, I just know that they will be coming at me thick and fast as soon as the 1,000 length swim is near.

Skipped another Insanity last night due to lack of energy but that’ll be due to leaving it late after I went to Cubs and my hour Insanity + shower would have put me past my bedtime. Better being fresh and ready for tomorrow’s, plus I did swim 4 miles on my Insanity day off on Sunday.

One thing I worked out last night, was that the total calories I’ll be burning off for the 1,000 length challenge is the same as what someone would burn off whilst doing the Ironman (8,000 – 10,000 calories – source:[1]

Skipping Insanity Yet Again

So how long has this gone on for? On and off for a month with this bloody illness now. I don’t have enough energy to make it up the stairs. Huge swim Sunday, COME ON BODY! REPAIR YOURSELF! I’ve pushed you hard for 6 weeks now, at least you can get your finger out and destroy this tiny teeny stupid cold (you know you’ve lost your sanity when you’re caught talking to your antibodies).

Second New Insanity Max Plyo Circuit – Done

Last night’s harder Insanity was still so horrible but I was surprised with how many impressive moves I could make. These moves I couldn’t think were possible 6 weeks ago, now I’m thinking at first I’ve no chance I can do them and then surprisingly I could manage them. Hopefully I’ll improve even more and quickly so I can be at the top of my game. Can physically measure and feel now how strong and fit the Insanity Workout is making me.

New Insanity “Max” Interval Workout…. oh god….

So tonight I was supposed to do both a Fitness Test and then right afterwards a Max Interval Workout… but with time very short because of the Cubs session I decided to just do the Max Interval Workout… thinking meh it can’t be that bad, I’m so much stronger and fitter since I started…. I’m ready!

As it started I remembered “Ah yeah it’s an hour long… maybe that’s why it’s got the MAX word in it, for maximum extended workout??? Whatever! I’m ready for this, I can do an hour”…. but then it soon dawned on me after about 5 minutes this is a completely new type of workout. Shaun T is no longer nice to me nor says nice things through the camera. He now says sternly “No messing now, I’m going to hurt you” and “Shaun T is smiling because he likes to hurt people”… WTF? WHY SHAUN T? I THOUGHT WE WERE BUDDIES???

Since 90% of the workout was all new exercises I was learning as I was going, sometimes shaking my head in disgust at what he was asking me to do for 60 seconds…. thinking “not a chance I can do that”.

To be fair, I now look back at my old exercises and think I can do these now without too much of a struggle. That’s why I’ve been given this new horrible workout so I can rise above this one and Not Forgetting that I equally found the old exercises just as impossible when I first did them, eventually getting fitter and stronger.

I think I’ll have to up my calories to 3,000 for this week now and keep an eye on my weight. I want all the energy I can take in, I’m trying to get as much sleep as possible but with mine and Ang’s bad chests it’s making life pretty grim right now.

Insanity Week 6 “Max”ness & Swimming to release Dread

Finished the week of Core Cardio and Balance and about to begin the first of four weeks where every Workout has the word MAX in it. The next one I have to do a fitness test before it then begin the workout! The last time I did the fitness test at the beginning of Insanity I was nearly sick, now I’ve got to improve and do an hour’s Workout afterwards? I’m going to need my energy gels!

Went to the lovely awesome Mark’s 30th last night and being sober I felt like I was taking a lot about the challenges and hated the thought of my over talking it. Worried behind my back people would be like “Will Paul shut up about these bloody challenges” lol. That’s my anxiety for you. Found myself joking with people about some of the things I’m really worried about. They were top though especially Mark with some top advice and some great suggestions. I just wanna get into that pool and swim away the anxieties away!

Need to pick up my energy levels today at I’m feeling quite weak this morning. Hope it’s not another bloody illness!!!

Smashed my Swimming PB tonight with no rest

Bearing in mind the advice of the coach to do more distance swims without breaks, I had an energy bar and energy gel and went for it. Bags of energy and smashed my pace, did 2 miles and all without stopping except for three 3 second gulps of water.

I think I gave a few swimmers lane rage, especially one who refused to wait for my to overtake and took up the whole lane so I couldn’t pass, so I ducked under the lane seperator, flew past in the general pool area and went back into the lane once I passed. Her face was a picture!

Then tonight smashed another Insanity Workout even with sore back and muscles.

HALF WAY THROUGH Insanity now! The real fun and games start next week (worried).

Spoke to Suzy from Serco and Redesigned Swimming Program

Suzy called me today which was spooky as I was about to call her about my training program etc. She spoke to me about that they were a little concerned about me doing the whole challenge in breastroke due to it being so demanding of a stroke. She also spoke about a possibility of me coming down to speak to her and have a 1 to 1 with a swimming coach and perhaps show my swimming technique to see if I could get any last minute free coaching!!! How much kinder can these guys from Serco get? I must remember to thank them somehow once (IF) I get this challenge done.

This is the email I sent to Suzy today:

Hi Suzy

Thanks for checking in on me today about my silly mistype saying March rather than May – if it was March I also would have been worried.

If it is at all possible, please could you forward on the new training programme to the coach? It is a bit technical and only shows the Distance Sessions which I will be attempting on Sundays when I will have the free, uninterrupted time in a lane. I was inspired by and based my programme on the attached Dark 10K training manual which talks about breaking up the distance with certain techniques etc.

I will also be doing a swim on a Wednesday or Thursday for 2 hours. I was thinking of what I could work on for my stroke on this particular day whether it be technique, strength or pure cardio. I would be interested to hear from your coach on this.

Finally, I completely understand your concerns about developing terrible back aches etc doing the challenge in breaststroke rather than front crawl. This is something I have thought of often and I guess this will depend on my technique and doing regular backstrokes to try to help neutralise my aches. My front crawl is just not great due to maximising my swimming time with breaststroke due to its fitness qualities. At this stage I think it might be a little late to start perfecting front crawl as well as trying to get my lengths in which I really need to start doing now. Furthermore, I also think that telling people I’m doing it in breaststroke which you also said is a more energy depleting and muscle/bone bending stroke could help attract a little more donations – because it is ALL about the donations for me at the end of the day, if not just a little bit to see if I can do this.

I am currently midway (5 weeks) through The Insanity Workout programme which works on building core strength and cardio and my swimming has already improved considerably just from doing this workout. I am also clean from beer, additives, pizzas etc since January due to the Insanity Elite Nutrition programme I follow to the letter. The Insanity Workouts also have a variety of sessions which just work on cardio recovery which involves stretching tired muscles which will be beneficial during my training.

For the challenge, I have spoken to a leading sports nutritionist about the energy supplements for the day, including energy gels, energy bars, taking beta analine, endurance and recovery drink supplements. All of these I have invested in (ouch not cheap) and have been using for about 3 weeks.

I’m in the best form of my life at present and really looking forward to the challenge. I would just appreciate if the coach could have a quick look at this email and give back any advice if possible. It would be even better if we could arrange a time to suit YOU when I can come and have a quick chat and perhaps show my challenge technique?

Many Thanks and Kindest Regards,

Paul Carruthers

Here is the training program I recreated today for my Distance Swimming training days.

25Km Swimming Schedule

New Insanity Workout – Core Cardio and Balance

So tonight, with the zero energy and anxiety I’ve had all day I went ahead with the Insanity workout I have to do all week… well kinda. I got the Insanity Ultimate edition which means tonight I should have been doing the hour long Core Cardio and Balance (Max Interval Sports Training) workout – Not A Chance Sir! I instead opted for the standard 40 minute Core Cardio and Balance workout, expecting it to be a bit easier and looking forward to something new to try.

Shaun T explained that we are not going to cane our muscles during the workout as we have been doing that over the last 4 weeks. So at this point I felt good about it, until we were two thirds in…. AARGGHH the pulses! Instead of cardio exhaustion pain, it was muscle pain. A very good workout though! Felt used and abused as usual which normally means it’s done me good. I think I’ll do the same again tomorrow and again Thursday (swim day) and Wednesday, Friday and Saturday I’ll attempt the Core Cardio and Balance (Max Interval Sports Training) workout!!!

SO I had a day off and went on the beers – GUILT

“Have a day off” people said. “Don’t feel guilt” they said… I cannot help it if I’ve become MAJORLY obsessive with everything which is going on.

Anyway, yesterday some awesome friends of ours came round and one beer became seven. Went bed after 1am and today got up with Seb before 7am…. and all day I have been mega busy with a needy Seb. Been quite anxious today meeting up with new friends and keeping Seb quiet at Grandma and Grandad’s house… and when I got home tonight I’m now absolutely shattered!

Skipped Insanity tonight and feel mega guilt for that too! – although Sunday is supposed to be a day off Insanity, but because I missed Monday’s workout from not being well I had a gap to fill. Oh well I start the new type Core Cardio & Balance Insanity workouts for next week which is classed as “rest week” – we shall see.

So I have now pretty much completed the first part of Insanity, apart from the missed 6 days being ill and last Monday. So really I did 3/4 weeks. I still feel a bit stronger, a bit fitter, my swim on Wednesday confirmed that with my renewed strength. I just wonder if this is the RIGHT plan for me at times and if I SHOULD be just concentrating on my swimming training. I reckon I’m just being hard on myself to be honest. It’s just that I can feel the challenge coming fast now, especially with putting it live on Facebook. I will still see this Insanity out, especially now the crazy Insanity part 2 starts after next week where all the workouts have the words “MAX” in them all.

I’m scared haha!