I spent the last few years continuously training for an event. Whether it is a full Ironman, a 70.3 or a marathon, I always had a goal that kept me focused. I have been enjoying the process of training and racing but, at the same time, the mental and physical stress that comes with preparing for a race is huge. It impacts all aspects of life. At some point, the body and mind need some break. This year, and for the first time in many years, I didn’t plan any race other than Seville Marathon last February. And as I failed attempt to run a sub 3 hour marathon in Seville, my motivation to train and race dropped significantly. This led to inconsistency in training and some laisser-aller in nutrition which is definitely not a good combination. As a result, I gained some weight and my performances dropped in both speed and endurance…Read More
It’s been more than a year since my last marathon in Frankfurt in 2017. I had initially planned to run Frankfurt Marathon again in October 2018 but I got injured and I had to skip it. After recovering from my injury, I started looking for an early season marathon. With a PB of 3h06, I wanted a flat and fast course with good weather conditions to attempt breaking the sub 3 hour mark. Seville Marathon was the best option. The city is beautiful and the course is known to be totally flat. I was a bit worried about the temperature but I thought there was a very low risk to have a hot day in February, even in Spain…Read More
Ironman Frankfurt has been on my bucket list for many years. This year, I felt my fitness had improved a lot with at least 10 months of consistent training. I was encouraged by my good performance in Ironman 70.3 Mallorca and I thought it was the right time to tick off Ironman Frankfurt on my list. Thanks to my coach Chris and the consistent training, I was on the start line in my best shape…Read More
I have been racing Ironman 70.3 Mallorca since 2013, I had 4 finishes and a very frustrating DNS in 2017. I probably wouldn't have came back if I had finished last year but I couldn't leave this race on a negative note, I had to do it again. As I am familiar with race logistics and I knew the course very well, I was only focused on performing well on race day…Read More
After each training/race, I like to take time to analyze the data and assess my performance. Here is a closer look at my Frankfurt Marathon data.
I decided to run Frankfurt Marathon mid September with the race taking place on the 29th of October. I was already in a decent shape but I was clearly lacking running volume. I had only 6 weeks to get ready. That gives 4 weeks to build up running volume then 2 weeks to taper.
The coach did his magic , I have done the hard work and, at the end of the 4 weeks of training, I felt in a great shape and was definitely ready for the race...Read More
After Firenze Marathon in November 2016, I was in my best running shape and I had some big goals for 2017. Unfortunately, few weeks after the marathon I injured my left hamstring and have been struggling with my running since then. I kept biking and swimming consistently but I had to stop running for some time and lost all the running fitness I worked so hard to gain. I slowly resumed running around the beginning of March. The injury was not healed yet and I was never able to train properly or build up any running volume. It was only around July/August that I started feeling better...Read More
The number of Tunisian athletes racing Ironman and Ironman 70.3 events is slowly increasing. This year, we had 8 Tunisians crossing the finish lines. That is not a lot compared to other countries but it is a big increase from the previous years where we had one or two athletes participating to Ironman races.
Here is the list of all Tunisian athletes who completed an Ironman or Ironman 70.3 event in 2017.Read More
I qualified for the Ironman 70.3 World Championship at Ironman 70.3 Kraichgau which had a massive rolldown for my age group 35-39. Racing at the biggest stage of the Ironman 70.3 was a great opportunity that I couldn't miss! Obviously my goal was not to compete with the best athletes in the world, it was more about enjoying the experience and giving my best on race day...Read More
Challenge Roth is arguably considered as the best triathlon in the world. One year ago, when the registration opened for the 2017 edition, it was sold out in less than a minute. I was one of the lucky athletes who got the so coveted slot. For my first Ironman distance triathlon, there is no better race than Challenge Roth...Read More
Kraichgau is a beautiful region in southwest Germany, known as the land of the thousand hills. As this name may suggest, Ironman 70.3 Kraichgau has a challenging bike course and a really tough run course! It has very good reviews and is well recommended for its top-notch German organisation and the beautiful landscapes on the bike course. This race was on my schedule since the beginning of the year. It takes place just four weeks before my biggest goal of the season, Challenge Roth on July 9th. So it offers a good opportunity to check my fitness level and my race readiness in term of nutrition, equipment and logistics. After my DNS at Ironman 70.3 Mallorca, it really made sense to go to Kraichgau...Read More
In the last four years, during the week after Ironman 70.3 Mallorca, I would be recovering my tired legs and enjoying the good memories from a great race in an amazing location. This year is different, I came back from Mallorca with fresh legs, empty hands and an extreme frustration of not being able to start the race. Friday, the day before the race, on the way to the bike check-in with my wife and the kids, we stopped at a restaurant to have lunch. Suddenly, a strong wind blew up and detached a big umbrella next to our table from its base. My wife courageously put her hand to avoid that the umbrella hits our kids. Luckily they were safe but she had a broken finger. She had to have an operation the same day to fix it. Obviously I am very disappointed but this accident could have been a lot worse.
With my three Ironman 70.3 races in 2016, I earned the Ironman All World Athlete status which rewards the top 10% athletes in their age group. This sounds really good and at this point someone might think that I am in the top 10% of the fastest athletes in my age group but that's not the case (yet) ! :-) In fact, the Ironman AWA is a loyalty program that benefits to frequent racers. The Age Group Ranking System is not about being fast, it is a combination of the performance and the number of races completed in the calendar year. Racing more is the best way to improve the ranking...Read More
December is the best time to assess the work that has been done during the year. The training log is almost full and comparison with the previous years could finally start! It is also the time to review what did work and most importantly, what didn't. Here are my lessons learned in 2016:
1 - Get a coach
I have been self-coached since I started training regularly in 2013. For three years, I have been using free training plans from the internet, plans from running and triathlon books and other resources like triathlon forums and blogs. I have tried many things and I had some success, especially in running. As I progressed in my short triathlon career, my goals shifted from finishing the distance to improving my performance...Read More
My triathlon season was over after Ironman 70.3 Wiesbaden mid-August. Since then, I have been training for Florence Marathon which takes place on the 27th of November. My coach Chris prepared a training plan that was more focused on quality sessions rather than high volume training. I averaged not more than 50 kilometers a week over the last three months leading to the race, my highest weekly volume was 66 kilometers. The running sessions were combined with some swimming and biking. After all, I am a triathlete preparing for a marathon! :-)
I was very excited to run Florence marathon for many reasons. First, I was going to Florence with ten members of my triathlon team, Coaching Zone. Second, I will have the privilege to run with my coach the first part of the race. Not many athletes get the chance to run a competition with their coach! Third, and most importantly, I felt I was in great shape and I thought my previous PR of 3:27:52 won't be hard to beat...Read More