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All the Bullshit gadgets

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Confessions of a bullshit gadget lover (weapon of choice is a Garmin 310xt – was a 305 forerunner)

  1. I have a data file for every run and ride since 2007 and every swim since 2010
  2. If my Garmin runs out of battery, it is officially no longer a workout so I stop and head for home
  3. I have a single scatter plot graph of every run over 5km since 2008 – av heart rate on the x axis, av pace on the y
  4. Among my offsite backups of family photos and other important files are my Sportracks logbooks
  5. Pinned to my wall at work is a graph of my 1k splits and cumulative average heart rate from my first ironman marathon last year
  6. Framed with my first marathon medal and finishers photo is a graph of my 1k splits.
  7. I set a goal time for each triathlon swim leg into my Garmin. It vibrates in my swim cap to let me know if I made it or not!
  8. I time every 50, 100, 200, 400etc repeat in the pool, then graph it to observe progress
  9. I have got my wife to drop my Garmin to me at work if I have forgotten it If she can’t, I don’t run.
  10. I have run red lights on the bike in order to beat the virtual pacer (I don’t do this anymore)
  11. I have ridden around the school oval with my two little boys writing their names as a GPS trace (hint: make the letters BIG)
  12. When my 305 died, I hung it up with all of my finishers medals
  13. I have contemplated gathering HR data while.......ah-hem...being on the “workbench”
  14. On this year’s Census Form under religion I wrote “Garmin”
  15. I have a man-crush on DC Rainmaker
  16. I am awesome at parties
  17. For some reason my wife won’t let me get a power meter

 

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With my garmin I program workouts such as 6 X (6 X 15s sprints and 45 seated recovery) on MT Cootha here is Brisvegas. .At the end of each split it beeps then I respond accordingly up and sprint or sit and spin. Keeps things nice consistent without the need to look at a watch, do the math whilst the heart rate is screaming.

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It's the skill of the coach - and athlete - to use the correct amount of art and science in sports, which also relates to usage vs reliance on these "gadgets". This is also why great scientists don't always top coaches...and why top coaches don't always listen to great scientists...because of the gulf between their application of their respective knowledge and experience to performance.

 

Which brings me to a principle for using power meters...use them as a tool, and don't be a tool using them.

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It is one of the great ironies of our sport that it tends to be slower people are the more they rely on tech gadgets to tell them how they are going.

 

 

An alternative way of looking at that is the more experienced you are at the sport the less likely you are to need a gadget to tell you how you're going.

 

A bit like all sports really. The longer you're in it, the better you are at performing solely on "feel".

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I don't race or train with power (although I'd probably give it a go if I wasn't a broke student :P )

 

Garmin 310XT is the go for me, love it in training (particularly when running, I'm shocking at judging pace!). For sprint or olympic distance tri's I tend to just go as hard as I can and hope I don't have a meltdown (and also use it to count the 7 laps of the bike course during our club sprint :P). For longer races I find it quite useful in the later stages of the run, when I find it becomes far too easy to slack off the pace. A quick look at the watch tells me I'm bludging and to pull my finger out!

 

As a few others have said, horses for courses. Just go with whatever works best for you.

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Confessions of a bullshit gadget lover (weapon of choice is a Garmin 310xt – was a 305 forerunner)

  1. I have a data file for every run and ride since 2007 and every swim since 2010

     

  2. If my Garmin runs out of battery, it is officially no longer a workout so I stop and head for home

     

  3. I have a single scatter plot graph of every run over 5km since 2008 – av heart rate on the x axis, av pace on the y

     

  4. Among my offsite backups of family photos and other important files are my Sportracks logbooks

     

  5. Pinned to my wall at work is a graph of my 1k splits and cumulative average heart rate from my first ironman marathon last year

     

  6. Framed with my first marathon medal and finishers photo is a graph of my 1k splits.

     

  7. I set a goal time for each triathlon swim leg into my Garmin. It vibrates in my swim cap to let me know if I made it or not!

     

  8. I time every 50, 100, 200, 400etc repeat in the pool, then graph it to observe progress

     

  9. I have got my wife to drop my Garmin to me at work if I have forgotten it If she can’t, I don’t run.

     

  10. I have run red lights on the bike in order to beat the virtual pacer (I don’t do this anymore)

     

  11. I have ridden around the school oval with my two little boys writing their names as a GPS trace (hint: make the letters BIG)

     

  12. When my 305 died, I hung it up with all of my finishers medals

     

  13. I have contemplated gathering HR data while.......ah-hem...being on the “workbench”

     

  14. On this year’s Census Form under religion I wrote “Garmin”

     

  15. I have a man-crush on DC Rainmaker

     

  16. I am awesome at parties

     

  17. For some reason my wife won’t let me get a power meter

     

 

 

 

Gold, but just out of curiosity - are you aware that two of your 17 sentences finish with a full stop, and the other 15 don't?

 

Also point 7 is two sentences, and none of the others are.

 

Does either of these things make you feel... slightly uncomfortable? Even somewhat twitchy perhaps?

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It is one of the great ironies of our sport that it tends to be slower people are the more they rely on tech gadgets to tell them how they are going.

 

Mark Allen famously set a standard by training to HR. He went alright. :shocking:

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I have contemplated gathering HR data while.......ah-hem...being on the “workbench”

 

 

Doesn't work for me. With the lag time the HR doesn't peak until the job's finished. :shy: Haven't worked out how to measure pace or power for this activity......yet.

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Confessions of a bullshit gadget lover (weapon of choice is a Garmin 310xt – was a 305 forerunner)

 

13. I have contemplated gathering HR data while.......ah-hem...being on the “workbench”

 

 

hasn't everyone... :ninja:

 

 

EDIT: damn, beaten to no.13 response...reason: MY GARMIN IS AT HOME NOT WITH ME AT WORK!!

Edited by Timbo

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I swim in a pair of speedos purchased in 83, I like to run in Roman sandals and I ride a Peugot six speed. I also like long walks in the park and believing that I'm better than you.

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Confessions of a bullshit gadget lover (weapon of choice is a Garmin 310xt – was a 305 forerunner)

  1. I have a data file for every run and ride since 2007 and every swim since 2010

     

  2. If my Garmin runs out of battery, it is officially no longer a workout so I stop and head for home

     

  3. I have a single scatter plot graph of every run over 5km since 2008 – av heart rate on the x axis, av pace on the y

     

  4. Among my offsite backups of family photos and other important files are my Sportracks logbooks

     

  5. Pinned to my wall at work is a graph of my 1k splits and cumulative average heart rate from my first ironman marathon last year

     

  6. Framed with my first marathon medal and finishers photo is a graph of my 1k splits.

     

  7. I set a goal time for each triathlon swim leg into my Garmin. It vibrates in my swim cap to let me know if I made it or not!

     

  8. I time every 50, 100, 200, 400etc repeat in the pool, then graph it to observe progress

     

  9. I have got my wife to drop my Garmin to me at work if I have forgotten it If she can’t, I don’t run.

     

  10. I have run red lights on the bike in order to beat the virtual pacer (I don’t do this anymore)

     

  11. I have ridden around the school oval with my two little boys writing their names as a GPS trace (hint: make the letters BIG)

     

  12. When my 305 died, I hung it up with all of my finishers medals

     

  13. I have contemplated gathering HR data while.......ah-hem...being on the “workbench”

     

  14. On this year’s Census Form under religion I wrote “Garmin”

     

  15. I have a man-crush on DC Rainmaker

     

  16. I am awesome at parties

     

  17. For some reason my wife won’t let me get a power meter

     

 

 

 

Rings very true...i have headed home because the Garmin died. I like the scatter plot idea and the GPS name spelling!

 

Just last night I was thinking about buying a Finis Swimsense to get more swim data!

 

I have a 310XT and the 2 main benefits are run pacing, and creating workouts so i don't have to remember them on the road.

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Confessions of a bullshit gadget lover (weapon of choice is a Garmin 310xt – was a 305 forerunner)

  1. I have a data file for every run and ride since 2007 and every swim since 2010

     

  2. If my Garmin runs out of battery, it is officially no longer a workout so I stop and head for home

     

  3. I have a single scatter plot graph of every run over 5km since 2008 – av heart rate on the x axis, av pace on the y

     

  4. Among my offsite backups of family photos and other important files are my Sportracks logbooks

     

  5. Pinned to my wall at work is a graph of my 1k splits and cumulative average heart rate from my first ironman marathon last year

     

  6. Framed with my first marathon medal and finishers photo is a graph of my 1k splits.

     

  7. I set a goal time for each triathlon swim leg into my Garmin. It vibrates in my swim cap to let me know if I made it or not!

     

  8. I time every 50, 100, 200, 400etc repeat in the pool, then graph it to observe progress

     

  9. I have got my wife to drop my Garmin to me at work if I have forgotten it If she can’t, I don’t run.

     

  10. I have run red lights on the bike in order to beat the virtual pacer (I don’t do this anymore)

     

  11. I have ridden around the school oval with my two little boys writing their names as a GPS trace (hint: make the letters BIG)

     

  12. When my 305 died, I hung it up with all of my finishers medals

     

  13. I have contemplated gathering HR data while.......ah-hem...being on the “workbench”

     

  14. On this year’s Census Form under religion I wrote “Garmin”

     

  15. I have a man-crush on DC Rainmaker

     

  16. I am awesome at parties

     

  17. For some reason my wife won’t let me get a power meter

     

 

 

 

 

This is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful things ever written on Transitions.

Edited by Pete
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Guest C.C

Gadgets are good if you don't become a slave to them. Top of my list for cycling improvement is an indoor trainer with power (preferably a PT, SRM etc), and a dirty big (very low tech) industrial fan.

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Doesn't work for me. With the lag time the HR doesn't peak until the job's finished. :shy: Haven't worked out how to measure pace or power for this activity......yet.

 

 

Your work:rest ratio obviously needs work, takes 2 minutes to reach steady state heart rate.

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Your work:rest ratio obviously needs work, takes 2 minutes to reach steady state heart rate.

 

 

Isnt 8 weeks between "efforts" the usual work to rest ratio for the average married man?

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8 weeks! My training partner believes any more than a couple of efforts a year is overdoing it. I think some negotiation is in order (begging, negotiation....same thing isn't it?)

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Mark Allen famously set a standard by training to HR. He went alright. :shocking:

 

yeah and he would be using a power meter if it was available and easy to use at his time too. The majority of pro cyclist and time trialists will be using Power meters ( I guess) so it only makes sense to use it as triathlete to help you train and race well.

 

I know the terms and graphs can be a bit much but you do not have to be a total analyst about it. there is a couple of important things to know and the rest is really more for fun if you enjoy looking at your own data. ( I do)

 

its a hobby guys so if you like to race fast without a watch on steel road bike and beat all those who have power meters and TT bikes and discs go for it if it rocks your boat (just know that you could probably be even faster if you had the gadgets) . I enjoy the gadgets as much as the training and the racing.

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Where gadgets shine is that I can focus on quality rather than quantity. So that when I plan to go hard in training I hit the sweet spot for what I'm working on and get the best out of the session. And when I have an easy session planned I go easy enough. With a PM you will find in reality you will more than likely have been going too hard on the easy days and quite often too easy on the hard days.

 

Yes I like gadgets and enjoy the technical aspect of riding. Would I do okay without the SRM's (road, TT and Track), probably so. But I feel I can train smarter with these by training in the right zones, why shouldn't I use them?

 

I can't take my money with me when I am dead, might as well spend it on stuff I like now... ;)

 

As for the argument that the old guys did okay without these gadgets. Don't you think they would have adopted these tools if they were available? Triathletes were at the forefront of technical advancement such as HRM and aerobars.

 

Serioously focus on your own square meter and let others enjoy using these gadgets if they want. Sounds more like jealously than anything else... :rolleyes:

Edited by Dalai

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I had a bit of a weird year this with preparing for Flanders and then having to pull out of IMR. The only consistent thing I had was the weekly spring and summer 10mile TTs to benchmark, so I concentrated on that. I improved from 29xx to 25:49 and just made it into the top 25%.

 

I found the two major things that contributed to my improvement were:

 

1) Having a good training set on the turbo that was specific to what I was aiming for and getting the sessions in (thanks AP!)

 

2) Competing on the same circuit every week. I thought this would get boring, but it didn't. If anything it got more exciting as the season went on and you could see yourself climbing the ladder. I got to know every little bump and corner over the season and it was this intimacy and regularity with the course that really helped me.

 

I did the TTs with my Timex watch but you hardly have time to look at it anyway over 10 miles.

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if you like to race fast without a watch on steel road bike and beat all those who have power meters and TT bikes and discs go for it if it rocks your boat (just know that you could probably be even faster if you had the gadgets) .

 

Don't confuse gadgets that will help you go faster with gadgets that will often make you go slower.

Edited by niseko

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Don't confuse gadgets that will help you go faster with gadgets that will often make you go slower.

 

 

What are some examples of gadgets that make you go slower? I was thinking of getting a xmas present for Conor.

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What are some examples of gadgets that make you go slower? I was thinking of getting a xmas present for Conor.

 

Surround sound systems aren't very aero!

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I currently own most of the said gadgets ie power meter, garmin, zipps etc....Funny that 15 years ago I could win tris and now I cant finish in the top 300.

 

I like these gadgets however I believe you should be fit and fast and they can help you find the last 5%. I would bet the 99% of people would go the same speed if they just trained on perceved effort instead of watts or HR.

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Where gadgets shine is that I can focus on quality rather than quantity. So that when I plan to go hard in training I hit the sweet spot for what I'm working on and get the best out of the session. And when I have an easy session planned I go easy enough.:

 

The power meter doesn't know how you are feeling on a given day or how much fatigue you are carrying into a workout from the previous few days, or if your sick, hungover or feeling terrific. Which is why 'easy - moderate - hard - all out' may be more beneficial training zones.

 

Having said that I do want a PM, and probably will get one, but am not expecting much difference in my race times.

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Having said that I do want a PM, and probably will get one, but am not expecting much difference in my race times.

 

 

Then you're buying an expensive bike computer.

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Guest C.C

The power meter doesn't know how you are feeling on a given day or how much fatigue you are carrying into a workout from the previous few days, or if your sick, hungover or feeling terrific. Which is why 'easy - moderate - hard - all out' may be more beneficial training zones.

 

Having said that I do want a PM, and probably will get one, but am not expecting much difference in my race times.

 

 

A power meter takes some of the guess work out of the equation. For example you could go out and do the same TT course on a cold crappy day average 35kph and feel fantastic and do the same course on a still, hot day, feel ordinary and average 40kph. Has your fitness/power improved...? How would you know?

Edited by C.C

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The power meter doesn't know how you are feeling on a given day or how much fatigue you are carrying into a workout from the previous few days, or if your sick, hungover or feeling terrific. Which is why 'easy - moderate - hard - all out' may be more beneficial training zones.

 

 

A Watt is a Watt. If say my training session is 2*20 at 90-100% FTP (pushing up my FTP I find means I can train harder more often) and I can't hit my power target due to accumulated fatigue / illness etc. Just going 'hard' I may only be able to manage 75% of FTP - I am therefore not training in the zone I need for a quality FTP interval session. Knowing this means I can evaluate my session and decide perhaps to turn the session into an easier one and reschedule my FTP intervals for a day or two later when I am hopefully feeling better...

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I have all the bullshit gadgets... still working on the bullshit fast part of the equation. :shy:

 

 

I have seen you go bullshit fast........it is when we are on the v/drome and i look at my speedo at 500watts for 3 seconds and 48kmph and you are still accelerating away from me.......

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I guess for athletes who love number crunching you can get a real kick out of a power meter and checking out their graphs and logs but I reckon a Powermeter IS just a glorified bike computer and the best way of knowing if you are getting better or not is your performance on race day. I've got a degree in sports science, physiotherapy and am a tri coach but adjusting every workout according to your FTP leaves me cold. As does racing with one. Everyone knows if they are going easy moderate and hard, even complete novices.

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Everyone knows if they are going easy moderate and hard, even complete novices.

 

 

Given a headwind i doubt even experienced cyclists can say how hard they are going, let alone complete novices. It would probably also surprise them how hard they go to maintain pace through some undulations or keeping up with the rest on a hill. Even on a flat I would doubt many people could predict their actual output within 10 to 20%, yet getting your best in a TT would need you to do this.

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Everyone knows if they are going easy moderate and hard, even complete novices.

 

Pretty naive if that's what you think! Biggest mistake in time trials or intervals is starting too hard. the first few minutes feel easy and it's not uncommon for your power to be 10-20% above threshold - not that easy to judge on perceived effort alone.

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Horses for courses, dude. Whatever works best for you is fine, and doesn't mean you need to be critical of people of do otherwise.

 

not being critical at all, just wondering who really uses what.

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I guess for athletes who love number crunching you can get a real kick out of a power meter and checking out their graphs and logs but I reckon a Powermeter IS just a glorified bike computer and the best way of knowing if you are getting better or not is your performance on race day. I've got a degree in sports science, physiotherapy and am a tri coach but adjusting every workout according to your FTP leaves me cold. As does racing with one. Everyone knows if they are going easy moderate and hard, even complete novices.

 

 

Ddin't you say you don't have one?

 

Strong opinions for a bloke who doesn't have experience with one to really know.

 

I don't have one either...but as an Engineer the idea of having good numbers excites me.

 

As for race day performance being the measure...I would like something I can measure more often than a couple of times a year.

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Minxman, I see where your coming from.

 

I find using power is a great thing during the longer races to help pace yourself. Not that it works too well when I'm unable to bloody control myself.

 

Reviewing the data after the race can help pinpoint what went wrong and then maybe you can change things to prevent it from happening again.

 

Ill be putting my data up soon and am happy to take the criticism that should be directed to me, unlike the critisim that was directed towards CEM and JDE after his great bike time.

 

I wish I had the experience and knowledge of racing long like you have in the sport to know it all and be able to control all variables in a race.

 

Feel free share on your knowledge for others to use.

 

mate i have stuff all experience, only done 3 IM. have some great friends with a lifetime of knowledge though, none of whom use power metres etc, sometimes hr monitors one day a week thats about it. i just think people overcomplicate a simple thing.

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Pretty naive if that's what you think! Biggest mistake in time trials or intervals is starting too hard. the first few minutes feel easy and it's not uncommon for your power to be 10-20% above threshold - not that easy to judge on perceived effort alone.

 

+1

 

Poor pacing is the most common novice mistake.

 

Pithy Power Proverb: "Power calibrates perceived exertion, PE modulates power" - Charles Howe

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touche slice, thing is i felt i was riding slow at busso and was shocked to see the clock coming into t2. I have never looked at the clock coming out of the water or getting off the bike and saw both this time at busso, it annoyed me because the first lap of the run i couldn't stop doing the calculations, so running down the main st past finish line where i knew there would be a clock i put my head down and looked at the ground to make sure i didn't see it on each lap. still went ok but yeah didn't crack3:30 on the run so now i'll have to do port again...

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But a triathlon bike leg is not a TT, it's a race with a variety of things going on that we need to adjust our efforts and speeds for. I think Macca played on this fear of the 'runners' in the race being terrified of riding at too high a wattage for too long which pretty much won him Kona in 2010.

 

I do have a computrainer so am well versed in what a watt is and how to train with it, and will probably get a Powermeter for the hell of it, but I still think easy, moderate and hard are tough to beat as the optimal training zones.

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Here's a $2.75 gadget I got from the vets today, as my Mrs was whinging that the straw on the aerobottle I lent her for Byron is too hard and is going to poke her eye out. Should solve the issue.

 

AeroTeat.jpg

  • Haha 2

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On 15/12/2011 at 11:16 AM, Otter said:

I swim in a pair of speedos purchased in 83, I like to run in Roman sandals and I ride a Peugot six speed. I also like long walks in the park and believing that I'm better than you.

Gadget freak, get a fixie!

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On 6 May 2019 at 7:11 PM, ComfortablyNumb said:

Here's a $2.75 gadget I got from the vets today, as my Mrs was whinging that the straw on the aerobottle I lent her for Byron is too hard and is going to poke her eye out. Should solve the issue.

 

AeroTeat.jpg

Good god man! Are you trying to devalue the sport by finding cheap arsed solutions to "real" problems. You will have no street cred unless you've paid $300 for a drink bottle in the shape of the space shuttle to mount on you $800 aero bars! 

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13 hours ago, Greyman said:

Good god man! Are you trying to devalue the sport by finding cheap arsed solutions to "real" problems. You will have no street cred unless you've paid $300 for a drink bottle in the shape of the space shuttle to mount on you $800 aero bars! 

Did I mention I found this aero-bottle in 2007 the day after doing the Canberra HIM out near the Coppins Crossing?

Damn there was gear strewn all over that bike course.

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10 hours ago, ComfortablyNumb said:

Did I mention I found this aero-bottle in 2007 the day after doing the Canberra HIM out near the Coppins Crossing?

Damn there was gear strewn all over that bike course.

I raced Canberra HIM that year as well and saw all the debris around copping crossing. Couldn't believe it myself. Graham Hannan used to have a box of stuff collected after each of those races. They'd pick the gear up, bring it back to transition, make an announcement and most of it would be gone by the time they packed up transition. The year it bucketed rain (2008 or 09) after the race, from the box Graham produced an unopened bag of jelly beans and packet of tampax and declared "someone had a bad day, that got worse!" 

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10 hours ago, Greyman said:

I raced Canberra HIM that year as well and saw all the debris around copping crossing. Couldn't believe it myself. Graham Hannan used to have a box of stuff collected after each of those races. They'd pick the gear up, bring it back to transition, make an announcement and most of it would be gone by the time they packed up transition. The year it bucketed rain (2008 or 09) after the race, from the box Graham produced an unopened bag of jelly beans and packet of tampax and declared "someone had a bad day, that got worse!" 

It bucketed rain the year I did it. Pretty sure it was 2007, as that  is on the towel I use for the gym & I often look at it and think 'damn that was in another life'.  It was my first ever HIM and I was absolutely wetting myself driving to the start, wondering what the Hell I'd got myself into.  Heaps of punctures and crashes on that steep descent into Coppins including a support motorbike crash.

Also the only time I met FatPom (briefly) in person - slapped him on the arse and said g'day as I passed him up the hill on the run when I saw 'FatPom' on the back of his Trannies cap.

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