There is some thought that two weeks before a race you should be tapering quite a bit. Prior to marathons I always felt that two weekends of tapering before the race weekend was too much, I felt that my body lost sharpness. That could be mental but I always preferred the weekend prior to race weekend to give myself a test but not to the point that it would wreck the following weekend, for example before marathons a 10k race was perfect. It was a 6 mile and a bit run, typically faster than marathon pace so arguably some speed work and it started the race juices flowing.
Before the big day next Sunday, the 70.3 Ironman Dublin, I have taken the same approach, a 24 mile cycle followed swiftly by a parkrun on the Saturday and then a spring triathlon pool based. If I am honest I did not intend doing the parkrun on the Saturday however it worked perfectly especially for speed work as it was at Victoria Park in Belfast, a flat fast course. I completed the parkrun in 18mins 50seconds, a new personal best which left my feeling confident that the hours of training are having the desired effect.
Sunday was the Sprint Triathlon in Lisburn, with a pool based swim. The course is a relatively flat course however there have been a couple of changes to the course meaning the run is now slightly up and down. This would prove perfect for transition preparation and help race day mentality, I wanted to go out and perform well and set myself a benchmark after the Belfast Olympic the week before. I completed in the course in 1hr 15mins 09 seconds, placing 18th and 3rd in my age category. Overall perfect, a 750 metre swim under 14 minutes 30seconds my quickest ever and personal best in a sprint even with a nasty head wind.