Showing posts from 2016

DWS Triathlon Series Race 2

Sprint Distance 
Started the day with a bad swim. I forgot how to swim in a wetsuit since it was my first wetsuit swim since April. I also had major sighting problem and ended swimming 200m longer than I should.  My pace was 2:12/100m. I knew the swim was bad but I didn't expect it to be that horrible. As a comparison I swam much faster in Oman and the last DWS Triathlon. Both sub 2:00 and non wetsuit.
I was beaten by pretty much everyone including those who usually swim much slower than me. 

I tried to recover on the bike but I can't seem to produce enough power to ride close to my FTP especially in headwinds.  I guess my race was over 10 km into the bike. There's no point pushing myself to the limit and risk getting injured one week before IM70.3 Bahrain. I backed off and continued the race without any urgency and just enjoying what's left of the race.

The run was just a protocol. I took the opportunity to focus on correcting my form foot strike. I hope I can replicate t…

Rasen Sports Individual Time Trial #1

25 November 2016

It was my first ITT of the season. My cycling fitness is no doubt improving but I am still sluggish to even compete for podium in my category (Men C category) which is the slowest category in Qatar Chain Reaction racing handicap ranking.

The ITT took place around Lusail Sports Arena on a two laps of 11.5km course. My target was to maintain around 160watt which is marginally higher than my current FTP of 156watt for the whole 23km ride. It was quite windy and I was struggling to put on a consistent effort. I only managed 39:27.7 for an average of 158W for 34.8kmh speed. I believe my biggest mistake of the day was I started the race without a proper warm up. I only did a short 5km warm up which was not nearly enough.

In the end I was still happy to finish the race in 5th position in Men C category, 2:41 behind the category winner.

Results HERE

Distance: 22.9km
Time: 39:27.7
Rank Category: 5 of 36
Rank Overall: 58 of 113

Hips dont lie

It's all in the hips. I recognize that all my running related injuries came from as a result of my weak hips.

Here are some exercise to strengthen the hips

Stretch excercices for runners

I have not been running very often nowadays. Last night I ran 18km (the longest in 3 months) I had this pain at the top of my inner thigh. It's likely a groin pull after I forced the adductor muscles to work hard after slacking for a long time and my bad running form off course. Its time for hamstring pull and groin stretch. Hope the pain will go away as I have a 10k race in a 50km relay team in a week time.

Here are some useful stretches for runners I found

Carbo Pro; a revolution in sports nutrition

I have been struggling to find a good energy drink for race day and training after my bad experience in South Africa last April. I really hate the gels in long races and I the thought of having another gel after 7/8 hours of racing is enough to make me puke. I have tried few brands. Some are better than others but I really couldn't stand the taste and the sweetness that are all too common in most products. Then I started taking Carbo Pro products the last couple of months after I heard about it from Malaysia's top triathlete, Rupert Chen and Malaysia's ultra running icon Razif. I simply love it. It's tasteless. Well not as tasteless as pure H2O. I has just a tinge of sweetness and the mixture is light and easy on the stomach. I have also started using other products like Metasalt, Recovery Amino and VO2 Max Endurance. I really hope I found the last piece of the missing puzzle in triathlon racing; the nutrition.

More info can be found HERE

Standard Bank IRONMAN African Championship Teaser

After a rather disappointing first IM last April, I think it is make sense to go back to South Africa and do it again hopefully with better preparation and without the dramas.

QA_TRI Triathlon Squad

It pains me to leave QA_TRI triathlon squad. I love the brotherhood and bond among the lads in the squad but I have to make this important decision early before we go too far in the season. This is not good bye. We are going to see each other a lot and like my mate Dave said, 'We are buddies before QA_TRI and we will still be team mates in TriClub Doha'. I would like to thank coach Ryan and my team mates for everything they have done and accepted me for who I am being the slowest in the squad. Well I am may be no longer part of the squad, but I will still attend the swim sessions with them. So this is not good bye.

D3 Triathlon Resources

I found this website very useful. Plenty of videos and articles on triathlon trainings

Dukhan Triathlon Series 2016/2017 (Race 1)

(Super Sprint)

Dukhan Triathlon has traditionally been a season opener for triathlon in Qatar. Every triathletes in the land will converge to Dukhan on Qatar's west coast to see how they fare against their peers after a long summer (off season for us here desert dwellings). With just about everyone turn up you bet it will be very competitive.

The swim was really fun. The water was quite choppy for Qatar's standard but was really clean and crystal clear. Having used to rolling start in triathlon races, the mass start for this short 570m swim provided us with a rare opportunity of the chaos associated with the swim start of the good old days in triathlon.

The beach was quite shallow for good 50m. I started with running high knees then did a good 6-7 dolphin dives and managed to latched on Francis's (one of my QA_TRI's team mate) feet. I knew if I can draft on him then I will have a good chance to clock a good swim. I did exactly just that! The swim was so crowded. …

Millenium Hotel Triathlon, Mussanah, Oman

7 October 2016

(Olympic Distance)

I love travelling and discover new places, but having a big family and getting involve in the money sucking sports like triathlon it just becoming too expensive. Therefore, I like the idea of  'Race_cation' , racing at new places and have a little vacation as a reward after. I have never been to Oman so this race was a perfect opportunity for me to have a little racecation early in the season.

Reading from the description, the race was promoted as a fast one. Flat run and bike courses with the swim in a calm waters of a marina. Perfect for setting new personal records. Well what they didn't tell you was that the course was not accurately measured. The bike was 1.6 km over, the run was 100m and the swim was more than 200m longer. I don't mind about the bike and run over distance that much but the swim? Being a weaker swimmer that will cost me dearly.

The race has only about 80 starters so the mass start was not too intimidating. I …

2016 Summer Duathlon Series; Most Improved Athlete Award

29 September 2016

Doha, Qatar: Last night was the first race of the new 2016/17 Duathlon series. There was a prize giving ceremony held after the race to present the award to the last Triclub Doha's 2016 Summer Duathlon Series winners. I came out 4th in the Male Open category and thought I have missed it by a whisker. To my surprise, Triclub Doha has been so generous and recognized my efforts by awarding me with the 'Most Improved Award'. I was so humbled by this accord and promise to work even harder this season. Thank you TriclubDoha.

Mohd Syafei

Tri Club Duathlon 9

Lusail, Doha, Qatar
16 May 2016

5km Run - 20km Bike 2.5km Run

Finally I've made it into the top 10 in the Tri Club Doha Duathlon series. It was a hot and humid evening at Lusail. I knew pacing will be the key in this race in this kind of weather. I let the others sprinted the first run while I was plodding at around 4:45 min/km pace. I completed the first run in18th. I knew I could catch some of the guys on the bike so I pushed hard but still within 160-170 bpm heart rate. I was pleased with my average speed of 33.5 km/hr pace (improved from 32.7km/hr pace at Duathlon 7 in March).

Like Duathlon #7, I gave it all out in the second run, but the heat and humidity really made it hard for me to run faster. I only managed an average of  4:24 min/km pace. The pacing strategy was spot on  as I finished the race stronger while others were fading. My time for the second run was the fifth fastest. How I wish the second run was longer. Anyway I was so happy with the result as I was hoping for a…

Triclub Doha Aquathlon 8

Nikki Beach, The Pearl Qatar
23 April 2016

My post Ironman blues was so severe after South Africa. I already did two mini races in less than two weeks, the Aspire Aquathlon and TriClub Duathlon. Now is the third. It is the 8th and second last aquathlon of the season by TriClub Doha. I just could not say no to it, plus it was a farewell race to one of our good friends at the tri club, John Denning.

Swim (1000 m)

The water has warmed up in Doha so it was a non wetsuit race. Being a leg sinker, I was struggling to keep up with the others to draft on and found myself in a no man's territory. I was being lapped by most people and was among the last exited the water (22nd of 29 starters). I completed the 1000m in 20:51 (2:05 min/100m). I was quite happy to be honest since it was my first non-wetsuit open water swim in a while.

Run (5 km)

The run was simply too short for me to bridge the gap. It was pointless for me to sprint all out and risk being injured or prolong my recovery. I just ran…

Aspire Aquathon 2015/2016 Race 3

Aspire Zone, Doha Qatar
16 April 2016

I took part in the Aspire Aquathon (500m swim + 5km run) just six days after my Ironman. It's funny how your body and brain has short term memories of the pain and sufferings it endured just few days ago. I was not supposed to do any hard effort trainings let alone racing within the three weeks after an Ironman, but being stubborn, I regarded this race as part of my active recovery.

I was given a hero welcome by my fellow Doha triathletes. Everyone seems to know my name. Syafei the Ironman. People I have not spoken to, came and shook my hand. I felt like a celebrity. It was a good feeling. Few of them were even inspired to do an Ironman race themselves. To me that was the real meaning of my Ironman journey. To inspire others to pursue their dreams, no matter how impossible it may seem in the beginning.

Swim Though I was not feeling tired, I found the swim was really tough. I felt lethargic and could not increase my stroke rate. I did not dare t…

Ironman South Africa 2016

Ironman South Africa 2016 Race Report.
Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Intro I still cannot believe that that I did it. The Ironman! A 3.8km swim, 180km bike and 42.2km run all in one day. Who would have thought? I could barely swim a lap in a 25m pool and have never ridden a bicycle of anykind for 20 years when I started triathlon two years ago after getting fed upwith the lack of progress in my running.
It was a long journey. I have progressed from Super Sprint to Ironman distance in those two years. The swimming, cycling and running has quicklybecoming a lifestyle and not just trainings. Be warn that this is a long post.Go get yourself a cup of coffee.

Training The training for Ironman is hard but it is not impossible. I almost quit triathlon last year when the stress of long triathlon training taken its toll on me, a father of three children (I now have four, busy I know) with a full time job. All you need is a little bit of creativity on your time management, sacrifice your social calenda…