Training Week #4 (One month down…five to go!!):


posted by on Ironman

Week Four Recap Pic v2

I will first explain the high level structure of my training plan.  It includes three weeks of building and then a fourth week of lighter volume and training time.  This gives the body a recovery period from the previous three weeks of build and prepares it for the upcoming three-week block.  This is typically how my training plans have been structured…even from my first sprint tri.  It seems to be a good format that by body (generally) responds to well.


PM – Started the training week off with a 60-minute bike trainer workout with hill repeats!!  The main set included three hill repeats at 10 minutes each in length with a combination of seated and standing climbs.  Legs felt a bit fatigued from the bike ride on the previous day, but not too bad.


AM – “Steady” run on the treadmill – 30 minutes at a pace faster that target race pace, but slower than tempo.  I completed 3.49 miles at 8:36 pace.  My quads still felt fatigued, but maintained pace as planned.

PM – Had to shuffle training plan due to a late meeting at work.  Rescheduled swim for Saturday.


AM – 50 minutes on the bike trainer with varying levels of work effort.  Nothing like a morning sweat fest to go the day started!

PM – 2700-yard swim – The main set focused on 4×10 minute steady efforts with 1-minute rest between intervals.  This set was similar to a set I performed in the prior weeks’ plan, but it was 3×10 minute efforts.  I saw some improvement with this 4×10 minute workout.  My sets timed out at 9:50, 9:50, 9:54, and 9:55 for the 500 yard sets.  I was very excited to maintain an overall pace of 1:58 for the 2000 yards total (with very little rest).  The prior weeks’ sets were 9:55, 10:03 and 10:01 with 2:00 overall pace for 1500 yards total.  I love to see progress!


AM – 30-minute recovery run on the treadmill – 3.16 miles with average pace of 9:31, which is on point for this recovery run.  My heart rate averaged 141 and I was happy to keep the HR super low.

PM – The best part about the recovery weeks – MASSAGE!!  I tried a new therapist that was recommended.  I had a great one hour massage and she was able to work out some kinks and soreness.  I find this to be a very important part of training…both physically and mentally!!

Friday:  REST DAY!!!


AM – Swim – This was the swim that had to be rescheduled from earlier in the week due to work conflicts.  This swim focused on drills and form.  It was a total of 2100 yards and I did not even use my Garmin!  (Not using a Garmin is kind of a big deal for me.  I guess I can be called a “data junkie” and like to know my stats.  However, especially in the pool, it is good to have sessions to not think about time/speed and focus on form and breathing.)

PM – BRICK!!  For this workout, Tony joined me and we biked on the trainer for 95 minutes.  There were many different intervals with varying cadences and intensities, which helps the time pass.  Before I started on the bike, I had all my run gear set out, so as soon as I finished the bike, I changed and started out on my 35-minute run at target race pace.  I am usually very consistent.  However, this run was a bit different.  I ran in/around my neighborhood (some rollers) and I averaged 9:10 pace for 3.81 miles.  The inconsistency came in my mile splits.

Mile 1 = 9:34

Mile 2 = 9:30

Mile 3 = 9:10

Mile .81 = 8:22 pace

I was happy to finish strong!  One positive take away to report, was regarding my fueling and how I felt on the run.  In the post from my last brick, I explained how I had not eaten enough on the bike (to sustain the run).  So early on in the run, I felt low on fuel.  I definitely made adjustments for this session and did a much better job! As a result, my average pace for the 35-minute brick run improved from 9:26 to 9:10.  It is all about learning and making adjustments for improvement!


2800 yard endurance swim – The main set of this swim was a challenge.  It included 100/200/300/400/500 easy-to-moderate pace intervals with only 15 seconds of rest between each interval.  I held pretty well, but slowed a bit during the 500 set.  The 15 seconds of rest is what makes this tricky.

The last sets before cool down were 2×300 easy/moderate/fast with 30 seconds rest between intervals.  Despite a good effort, there was not a whole lot of “FAST” going on at that point.  I was really feeling fatigued for these 300 sets, but I just did my best and was happy to reach cool down.

Reflections from the week:

This closes out my first 4-week block of training.  I am very proud of myself that I have not missed any of my scheduled training.  It has been hard at times and I KNOW that it will only get harder as the time passes and the training gets longer and more intense.  With a solid month in, I will just continue forward and do as I have done so far…take one day at a time and do the best I can do!


Time: 8 hours 50 minutes

Swim: 7,600 yards

Bike: 42.43 miles (all on the trainer)

Run: 10.46 miles

Stretching/foam rolling:  Some, but not enough!


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