Posts Tagged ‘Training’

posted by on Ironman

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Time goes by so quickly.  As I have gotten older, this is more true every year.  There are times of course when the time can’t pass quickly enough….when you are at work on Friday afternoon of an upcoming holiday weekend or when you are pushing through a hard two minute FTP %+++ interval on the bike, but generally speaking, there is not enough of this precious commodity.  We spend day after day balancing out our time between family, work, training, etc. and some days it is way more challenging than others.  This is one reason why I thought long and hard before committing to Ironman #2.

The first time back in 2014, I knew that it would be a huge time commitment.  But, now having that experience, I know even more of what some of those tough days are REALLY like.  It is not just a huge impact on me, but on Tony as well.  He is “in” it with me for the craziness that Ironman training brings to everyday life.  Hopefully, since I have training partners that are racing as well, Tony’s “in” does not equate to as many long bike rides as it did in 2014, but regardless, he knows what this six month training plan means.

The “official” plan began on March 5.With all the upcoming spring and summer training, there will not be too much free time to get out of town for vacations or long weekends.  We will definitely work in lots of together time, but I imagine most of it will be around Raleigh.   Before the plan kicked in, we took an all-inclusive vacation in Mexico to chill, spend time with each other and soak in some sun.  That get-away was a great idea and I am glad we made it happen.  It was just what we needed.

Relaxing in Playa del Carmen

The first (of six) 4-week training blocks is in the books.  I tried to take one workout at a time and that’s my game plan for the next five months as well.  My swim, bike and run plan has been created from a few different sources and I am utilizing Trainer Road for any of the trainer rides on my plan (which have been ALL for this first four weeks).  I am using the specific IM plan in the app to choose the rides.

Since I started using Trainer Road a bit over a year ago, I have been a fan.  Honestly it is a love/hate relationship, because I have had plenty of rides that have kicked my ass, but I know it is good for me in the long haul.  I think it is an excellent tool and will prove very beneficial this year.

The Trainer Road plan was actually 4 weeks longer than the planned 24-week plan.  Therefore, we started a 4-week base plan prior to March 5. lt certainly started off with a bang!  The first workout in the first week was an FTP test on the bike.  I have not taken a FTP test since I was training for Chattanooga 70.3 last spring.  I was very happy that my results put me right where I was half way through that training plan.  I have a lot of time on the bike in front of me and I look forward to the gains I will be making.

Highlights from the month:

*Completing the longest two trainer rides I have ever done!  Due to the aforementioned unpleasant weather, week one had us on the bike for 3 hours 15 minutes.  Prior to that, the longest trainer ride I had completed was 2.5 hours.  Week three had us on the bike for 3.5 hours.  A new record just 2 weeks later!  Luckily, I have training partners and we endured this total of 6.75 hours together!

Our 3 hour 15 minute trainer ride! Thank goodness Bill and April joined in!

3.5 hours on the trainer! Once again, it was bearable with my awesome training partners!

*Hitting 4 rides in week two…the plan calls for 4 rides some weeks and I have not done this in a very long time (I am guessing since 2014)!  Three of them happened during the workweek so it took a bit more mental commitment than even physical, but it will pay off!

*Getting back outside for a long run = Week three’s 8 mile run was back outside.  A dry day allowed me to get off the treadmill and onto the greenway.

*Tony has been able to capture some good video in the pool to allow me to focus on some much needed areas of improvement.

*The time change!  It’s nice to have daylight when I get off work!

*The last Saturday of the month called for a dry day and decent temperatures to get outside for the first time this year and the take my new bike for her inaugural ride!

The Purple Butterfly was ready to hit the road!

Obstacles from the month:

*More cold weather than we should have in NC in March!  Plus it seemed like the rain always waited for the weekends!

*The outside bike ride that I was so excited about lasted about 4 miles until I was standing on the side of the road with a broken chain and front derailleur.  Needless to say, I was MAJORLY bummed!  My ride companions, Bill & Derek, worked to try to fix my chain (before the realization that the front derailleur was toast), and had an amazing effort in doing so.

Bill & Derek working on my bike roadside.

For the first time ever in my experience of riding bikes, I had to call for a ride home.  Since Tony was out of town, our neighbor David came to my rescue.  During all this drama, the help I got to try to repair the chain and the ultimate ride home were indeed highlights and the reminder that I have awesome people in my life!

Not the bike ride I had imagined, but lucky to have a ride home!

*Getting chased by a dog on my brick run.  The drama continued after my bike mishap.  After making it home, I got on the trainer (after figuring out how to change my pedals….Tony is my very relied upon bike mechanic) and got in my ride.  Then I had a 3 mile brick run which I did outside.  I was chased by a little dog on a road that I frequently run.  It was quite the day, and I really felt like the odds were not in my favor, but I got my training in and then spent the next 1.5 hours getting a crazy good massage.   #overcometheobstacles

Month #1 Totals:

Swim: 29,400 yards (16.7 miles)

Bike: 331 miles

Run: 47 miles

Other: Strength, Stair Workouts & Yoga (4.25 hours)

Total Time: 44 hours 24 minutes

 

My Latest

Mar
2016
22

posted by on Triathlon

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TimIt seems like yesterday that it was the new year and now we have already moved up the clocks.  No complaints at all, since I have already taken advantage of the extra time in the evening with after work outdoor rides.  We have been blessed with some beautiful weather for the past couple of weeks which is always welcome.  Being out on the bike without any type of cold weather gear makes this girl happy!

As we started the year, I was excited for the tri season and new adventures.  I have already had a few ups and downs, but am in a good place overall.  Mainly this is related to my running fitness and how I had some forced time off last fall into the winter.  After my leg was better and I started back running, my progression seemed to be very slow.  I certainly did not expect to bounce back to where I was at the end of October (when I was training for the half marathon and was in a good place with my running fitness), but it has been much slower than anticipated.   Besides having a slower pace, I was battling higher heart rate for the efforts I was giving.  I started focusing on my specific HR zones and incorporating some Z1 and Z2 runs to work on my base fitness. 

Run

One of our beautiful run days!

After hanging in and staying determined, I finally feel more like my running self.  While my speed is not what it was (yet), my HR is cooperating better and is more in line with what I expect.  While I am not 100% ache free, it is not anything that prohibits me from running.  I am still having ART on occasion and staying super focused on stretching/yoga and foam rolling.

Bike Fun

Bike fun with the crew!

I pushed the “go button” for Raleigh 70.3, which will take place on June 5.  This will be the third time that I have raced Raleigh and did not originally plan on it for this year.  I was excited about the idea of Chattanooga 70.3, but I missed out on the sign up last fall and it sold out!  I was a bit hesitant to commit to another round at Raleigh, since I knew I would have big goals since there are a few things I had not yet accomplished related to that race.  However, there are lots of people training and I decided to just give it a go and, as always, train hard and do my best.  Even if my run has not gotten back to where I ideally would like, I can’t dwell on the fitness I had.  Working hard is something I am not afraid of doing and that is exactly what I will continue to do in preparation for June 5.

Unstoppable

Biking has been good.  The last couple of weekends have been outdoor rides (one cold ride and the another that started nice but ended up having a small burst of torrential rain after the halfway mark).  On January 30, I took a FTP test, which is the first time I had done so using a power meter.  I plan to repeat the test in the coming weeks to note changes.  I believe this will be a great gauge to monitor improvement! 

FTP Test Photo

The FTP Test!

Swimming….oh where do I start to give an update?  I previously shared here on the blog that I decided when I had to stop my half marathon training last fall that I would have a strong focus on my swim during the winter.  I did just that.   I have been able to generally get in three swims a week.  I had a couple of lessons to provide me guidance on stroke improvement and drills to incorporate.  I have been super focused on my form and maintaining that focus throughout each and every workout.  Some days I feel my off season dedication is paying off, but then some days the frustration level is high.  I have decided to focus on those good days and not let the bad days take over mentally.  I think my stroke has become more efficient and stronger and I will continue to work toward improvement and stay as positive as I can!!

One great thing to report about my swimming is that I have developed regular training buddies at the pool.  Being part of a team and being around people that have similar goals and training habits is great!  Historically, I would always choose to swim in the evenings after work and would generally be solo.  The logistics associated with morning swims and then a long commute to work, was not a task that I could accomplish.  Since changing jobs last year and being 5 minutes from the pool, I have taken to regular morning swims along with others from the tri team.  A few of us are on the same plan, so we have the same workouts to complete, which is very different for me, but I love having training partners!  I have gotten used to morning swims and the occasional evening swim that has to happen when the timing fits best into the plan, almost feels weird!

So, I am starting week 8 of my Raleigh plan.  This week is recovery week.  Here are some of the highlights of my training over the past several weeks:

· Swim = Endurance swim from last Thursday evening.  It was 2600 yards total with the main set being 4×500 (alternating swim/pull).  Being an evening swim at the end of the week, plus the last workout before rest day, I was not sure what to expect.  I could tell fairly early on during the warm-up that it would be a good one.  I was really feeling the water well and felt fluid and smooth.  It makes me wonder why I can’t seem to recreate that for myself more often.  Clearly I have it in me…  (I must add that I did this swim WITHOUT my i-pod.  I realized when I was prepping to get in the water that I failed to charge it after getting the low battery warning at the end of my last swim.  Yay me!!)

· Bike = Two workouts that I can reference…one was my FTP test back on January 30.  This was actually before my Raleigh training plan started and was during some pre-season training.  I felt as if I was able to give an solid effort throughout and did not go out too hard and pay for it at the end.  It can be tough to find that happy medium.  I was pleased with the numbers while knowing that I have lots to work on!  The second I can reference was PART of a workout.  That sounds odd, a couple of Sundays ago, I ventured out on a 40 mile ride with two of my training partners.  It was early afternoon and was a beautiful day.  It was truly one of those days that is awesome to be outside just riding your bike.  That joy was cut a bit short by torrential rain…it didn’t last too long, but we couldn’t find the gas station for shelter quick enough!

· Run = My last few tempo runs I have felt like I was able to give a solid effort, the effort my legs wanted to give, and my heart rate responded better than expected.  While they were not easy runs, by any stretch, it has been the challenge I needed and I felt like I delivered!   

· Yoga/foam rolling = This is a big part of my training and I continue to be dedicated to incorporating appropriately.  I do a better job at scheduling these activities so they don’t get pushed aside or forgotten.  I want to be a healthy triathlete and I am committed to doing my part!

Track

Last week was the first track workout of the season

On a side note, two Sundays ago, I went out to spectate a local marathon called the Tobacco Road Marathon.  Our good friend, Tim, was racing.  He and his wife Nicole were my original partners to race at Kiawah Island last December, but Nicole ended up participating solo when Tim and I had to pull out due to injury.  Since becoming healthy, Tim has trained tremendously hard over the past several months and was hoping to race to a Boston Qualifying time.  Well, he did just that and I was so glad to be there to watch him race and cross that finish line meeting his goal. 

Tim shirt

Way to go Tim!

His emotional reaction was so amazing and very inspiring.  Hard work and dedication are truly rewarding and I could not complete this post without sharing this news.  I am so very happy for him!!        

posted by on Half Marathon

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Today is the race day that did not happen.  My original plan for today included running the Kiawah Island Half Marathon.  This was the first race that I knew I would have on my race schedule for 2015.  It was actually decided in the summer of 2013 (sitting pool side with cocktails)…yeah, a long time ago. 

At the end of my tri season, I had switched to a run focus and had a great plan to follow.  I was working hard and running well overall.  As of my last running update here on the blog, I knew my goal (and stretch goals) were completely attainable.  That is one reason why it is so frustrating.  Despite the best laid plans, they unfortunately have to change sometimes.  To my dismay, I have deferred my race registration to 2016. 

patience 2

About seven weeks ago, I was having some lingering leg pain.  It was originally in my inner thigh where I felt the most.  I finally had the run where I knew I had to stop and give it a break.  I iced, stretched and rested it for a few days.  Then after this initial break, I gave it another go.  I still had the pain.  So, more resting, stretching, icing and ibuprofen.  This time I gave it a week without running in hopes that would be enough.  I was still optimistic that I would be able to race on December 12.

Upon my next try at running, I was not feeling the pain in the inner thigh.  I was able to get a mile, but I gradually felt pain in the upper hamstring/inner abductor.  After that, I gave it one more go, but decided I needed help.  The basics of rest, stretch, ice, ibuprofen was not doing the trick. 

I have read about ART (Active Release Therapy) and my friend Tim was undergoing treatment when I started battling these issues.  He had good luck with the treatment (he was supposed to run the marathon distance at Kiawah Island, but had to defer his registration as well).  I started seeing the same doctor and have had four treatments so far.

My last training run occurred on October 24 and had not tried had a “successful” run since then……..until this past weekend.  After my third treatment, I was given the green light to go for a run.  I was able to get in three miles!!!!  I did not have pain, but still felt tightness in the same area.  I was very excited to get it in and how I felt.  I WILL say that it was surprising how my run fitness has dropped in the weeks that I have had to that this break.  That’s okay though, just happy to run!  Baby steps…..

It seems that the pain problem are weak hips/hip flexors which has caused me to compensate in other areas during my running resulting in the issues I am currently experiencing.  I have added hip strengthening exercises to my regiment as well.  So, when I do get back to a regular running routine, my hips will be ready!

Fortunately, I really wanted to focus on my swim after Kiawah, so I have just pushed that up in the schedule.  On average, I have been able to get to the pool three times a week. Regular swimming during the off season is a goal of mine and I have gotten off to a solid start.  I have also continued to bike on the trainer, which is what I opt for when I need a good sweat session!!  I have incorporated core and lower body work without any pain, so I have plenty that I CAN do!

Patience

This is the first  race of any kind, that I have signed up and was not able to participate.  I know that listening to my body, focusing on treatment and getting my weaknesses stronger, are in my best interest.  It is still a bummer that I had to put it on hold and not go for my open half marathon goal this year.  No worries….I will be healthy and determined when the 2016 race season rolls around!    

My friend Nicole is racing this morning…..she was the last one standing after Tim and I had to defer.  (Tony had considered this race at one time, but never committed.)  Her training has gone really well and I know she was prepared to have a great day.  Sometime soon we will all be able to race together….I guess we can plan this next summer while sipping cocktails by the pool!  

patience 3

posted by on Half Marathon, Triathlon

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Since my last triathlon of the season in September, I knew my focus would immediately turn to running.  Since the summer of 2014, I have had my eye on the Kiawah Island half marathon in December 2015.  That is quite some time ago, and is fairly atypical for me, but that is what happens when you are hanging out with other runners one beautiful day at the pool while having a few cocktails!

In all seriousness, I was totally on board for this race.  I have never raced in an open half marathon (they have all come as part of the 70.3 distance) and I had firm goals in mind.  Our friends that were part of this discussion are Tim and Nicole, who are going for races in all 50 states.  Plus, Tim had his sights set on a race that would be a Boston Qualifier course and Kiawah seemed like a great choice!  So, it was decided back in the summer of 2014, Kiawah Island would be on our calendar for December 2015.

I was looking forward to going into run focused training after the Outer Banks Oly back in September.  At that race, I had a really good run and that gave me a boost of confidence for what I might be able to race for in December.   Tony helped me select a plan and it is a program called “FIRST” (Furman Institute of Running and Scientific Training), which is three runs a week and cross training on other days,  This seemed like an obvious choice in training plans, as I always want to get bike trainer time and need swims as often as I can get them.  The three runs a week include the three biggies…speed work/intervals, tempo and a long run.  I opted for a lighter training week after Outer Banks Oly and then the following week started up with the new training plan. 

Running has been going well.  Unfortunately, at the end of September/beginning of October, we had a TON of rain (something like 14 days in a row), so there was plenty of this:

treadmill

Treadmill TIme!

However, the last two weeks have been more typical fall weather, so running outside has been a treat with pleasant temperatures and just the desire to be outside (I LOVE FALL!)  I have also been hitting the track, which is something I have not done in quite some time.  For the last couple of years, speed work for me has been on the treadmill, which really is a challenge, but there is just something about those track workouts!!!

Since my training is going well, I have begun to adjust my goals, which I will share soon.  I was bummed, as this last weekend’s long run was not good, but I was able to get my mileage of 13 total and add to the pool of mental toughness.  I have not run 13+ miles since Raleigh 70.3 at the end of May, so it was still good to get the mileage tucked away. 

So, other than 13.1 training, a couple of weekends ago, we also participated in the last Tri Throwdown of the season.  If you have not read my prior Throwdown recaps, check them out here (from September and August), since it is a unique race set up.  As I have previously described, there are only three rules, (1). Be Safe (2). Have Fun and (3). Go to the after party.  However, with the rain and cool temperatures that we had been experiencing, wet suit legal was a must for me!  The weather on race day was looking really dismal.  We had finally crept out of the continuous rain period, but it was planned to make a re-appearance for pretty much the entire weekend.  For me and Tony, it would be a race morning decision (a cold and rainy race day would zap a lot of the fun out of the event). I had planned my run training accordingly during the week and moved my long run from Saturday to previous Wednesday and would use my run at Throwdown as my tempo run for the week.

Saturday morning, we woke and checked the weather.  It looked clear up until late-morning!  It was a go for us!  The extra fun thing about Throwdown this go-around was that Tony was racing and the handicap system had me starting 10 minutes before him.  Automatically, that makes me his “rabbit”….essentially his mission was to chase me down and make the pass!  This would be interesting!

Throwdown Wetsuit

Getting Tony all ready to go in his wetsuit!

The swim was cool…temperature wise.  It was around 68 degrees, which is not to my liking (I am a wuss with cold swims!).  Despite this, I had an okay swim (750 meters), but felt chilly most of the time.  I was looking forward to the bike, because I had a new toy to try!  For my birthday, Tony REALLY spoiled me and surprised me with the Garmin Vector 2S (power meter in the pedals). 

Garmin Vector

This was the first ride where I would be using them.  The out and back format allows you to keep an eye on how people are progressing behind you.  So, when I passed Tony on my way back into the T2, I knew that he was making up the time gap. 

 Throwdown Bike

The run is also an out and back and is fun to see everyone else during the 5K.  I also knew where Tony was in his mission to catch me and the last time I saw him, I told him to SLOW DOWN!  I had this strong feeling that I would see him again and it would be as he made the pass! 

Throwdown Run

I was nearing the finish line and as I passed one of my buddies that was volunteering, I asked him if Tony was behind me within sight.  He said “YES”!!!  Our friends that were out racing or volunteering knew of the fun challenge Tony and I had going on, so everyone was cheering for me to run faster because he was really gaining on me!  I was determined to cross the finish line first and I turned it up a notch for the last bit!  I did it and crossed just a few seconds before him!  It was a lot of fun and the friendly challenge between me and my hubbie made it even more fun. 

Throwdown Girls

Three of the ladies of Team Trilife!

After the race, we headed over to the restaurant for the after party and rain started to fall literally as we pulled into the parking lot.  We really got lucky with the weather for the race!  It ended up raining for the rest of the day.  While at the after party, we all ate, drank and started watching the live coverage from Kona of the Ironman World Championships.  Afterwards, we headed home, cleaned up and continued to watch the coverage for the rest of the afternoon.  What a fun day!                                  

posted by on Race Report, Triathlon

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Since I decided on two additional triathlons, one sprint and one olympic, training has picked up during the past few weeks.  While I had stayed active and continued to swim, bike and run throughout July, having the races on the calendar give me more structure to my training sessions. This has been just what I needed to get excited about the coming weeks.

Swim:  I have been able to get in open water swims for the past four weekends.  I have a pair of new swim buddies that are just as anxious to get in time at the lake as I am.  One of them also has a kayak, so his wife provides swim support, which is awesome!  My time at the pool has been pretty typical…but I feel I have had more good days than not.

Bike:  I am still really enjoying the bi-weekly group rides from TriLife.  I try to go on both Tuesday and Thursday, schedule permitting.  These rides continue to challenge me, plus they are fun!

Run:  Tempo runs and intervals have returned in regular rotation.  I have taken a more challenging approach to the speed intervals (from Tony’s suggestion), but I know pushing myself here will yield results.  I also just got in a long run yesterday…a run longer than I have done in a while.

Highlights:  

(1).  A 50 mile ride a few weeks ago where I was really able to push my pace.  A group of us rode from TriLife on a Saturday morning….the group started at around 10 riders and quickly broke down into a couple of smaller groups.  The guys I stuck with were some that I ride with regularly during the week.  I enjoy riding with them as we have similar riding styles.  A solid challenge, but I felt great at the end!

(2).  The second highlight was my open water swim this past Saturday.  The total swim was .75 miles but it was all about how I felt!  Before starting the swim we found two sight points to work with.  The first was only about 200-300 yards out and then we turned and headed further out towards the middle of the lake.  After we swam to the point we wanted, it was just a turn around and swim back to shore.  I was feeling good and decided to push my effort the last few hundred yards or so of the swim back to shore.  I did just what I wanted and was pleased.  I try to finish strong in races, so I really should plan to try to incorporate this approach more in training to better simulate racing!

(3).  The third highlight was yesterday’s long-ish run.  I have not really run anything over the 4 to 5 mile range in a while, so I wanted to go out and tackle 7 miles to get a current gauge.  Tony and I hit the Greenway Sunday morning.  He had 10 miles on his legs from the day before, so he tagged along with me for his recovery run.  Despite having to back off a couple of sections to keep my heart rate from going too high, I was super pleased with my 8:50 pace for distance.  I felt good when we finished and really no complainants overall!  Looking to make steady improvements over the next few weeks! 

(4).  The fourth highlight comes in the form of a “quasi” race report about an event called Throwdown (www.trithrowdown.wordpress.com).  Throwdown is an event, open to all, that is produced by the owner of TriLife, Jon.  It is a “mock race” that is a sprint distance triathlon.  There were 16 participants at the 8/19/15 event and we had a blast!  This is still a relatively new concept and I expect participation will quickly grow. We did not have chips for timing, but Jon utilized a timing system to capture results.

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

Just like any other race, there was a transition area set up with bike racks.  It was great that we could park and then rack our bikes just a few feet away.  I set up my transition area pretty much the way I would for an official race.  Transition is one of the areas that I don’t really practice, so this is a great event to do just that! 

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

The swim did not have inflatable sight buoys this time, but there was one lake buoy we swam around and then out to a dock that served as the turn around.  Going out on the swim the sighting was pretty good, but coming back it was a little more challenging.  The planned distance was 750 meters, but I think we swam closer to 1,000 meters.  I did not lap my time as soon as I got out of the water, which I will definitely do next time.  The official T1 time did not start until we did a short run from the lake to the parking lot.  With the “longer” swim course and me not tripping my time at a good point, I am not sure what true swim pace was.   I felt pretty good on the swim though.  Based on feedback, I think they will try to make the sighting a bit better for the next event.   

Throwdown swim2-Lee

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

The bike was around 12.5 miles and the route included roads that are familiar from the group rides.  I pushed pretty good on the bike and my Garmin had me at an average of 20 mph.   

The 5K run was entirely within the park and only had one incline, right at the beginning.  After running up the hill and trying to settle into a comfortable pace, I felt like I should kick it up a notch.  There was a section of the run that was on gravel and since I don’t frequently run on gravel I was not as comfortable as I was on the pavement, but I maintained well.  The downhill finish was nice and I was pleased to be the “first female finisher” (the only time I have heard those words) out of the four women participating.  I ran an average pace of 8:34 and my total event time was 1:32:05.  Tony also participated in Throwdown and he had as much fun as I did.  He had run 20 miles the day before (he is training for Marine Corp Marathon) and despite this and the very little swimming that he has done lately, he still beat me by 7 minutes!     

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

Photo from trithrowdown.wordpress.com

After the event, we all headed to Panera for lunch.  It was a day of great fun and solid training to boot!  I am already looking forward to the next Throwdown on September 6!     

Low Light:

There was one low light that sticks in my mind.  It was last Tuesday’s group ride.  We all took a chance in deciding to move forward with the ride, and not just jumping on trainers, but we paid the price.  About 20 minutes in, we hit a bad storm with very heavy rain.  We had modified the route “in case” there was rain, but we were a good distance out when it hit.  We were SOAKED to the bone when we got back to the shop.  To me, it was reminiscent of the rain I experienced in Lake Placid last year.  The one good thing that came from it, is that I took a lot of time to really clean my bike over the weekend.  I desperately needed it before it got rain soaked, so this was more incentive to get her in great condition! 

Bike Cleaning

The Cannondale getting some TLC!!!

Training is in a good place for me right now.  I am enjoying it more than I can recently remember and looking forward to my upcoming events!

posted by on Triathlon

6 comments

This covers the last of my Raleigh 70.3 training.  I am pleased with how these last 4 months have gone.  I feel prepared for race day and know that I was committed to my training and gave it my all.  Headed into another race, that is where I like to be.  I never want to have regrets that I did not do enough or feel under prepared.  That is just me and how I like to approach things.  Whatever race day has in store for me will be what it will be but I will give it all I have to give.

Monday:
PM: My focus lately had been on longer sets, whether in the pool or the lake, so I figured I would throw in some variety and mix things up a bit with some shorter sets.  Completed 2500 feeling ok…after a very active weekend, my body was still catching up.

Tuesday:
Since it was Tuesday, it was another group ride with TriLife.  This ride never disappoints and that night was no different.  We had some bad weather move through late in the afternoon, but luckily, the rain was gone by ride time.  We delayed the start by a bit, to allow the roads to dry some.  We hit some wet areas, but overall not too bad.  The weather was SOOOOOO muggy, but we knocked out 25 miles and another fun ride was in the books.

Wednesday:
After fighting commute traffic, I barely made it on time to join in with the group at Falls Lake for the open water swim.  SINCE I did have a frustrating drive, the swim was exactly was I needed.  This swim really showed how important it is put a bad session behind you and just focus on the here and now.  After Sunday’s less than stellar poor OWS, this one was good for the psyche.  I enjoyed being in the lake and it felt good.

Thursday:
AM:  I had another go at my current tempo pace.  I have been working hard to “break through” with this pace and I just keep giving it my best.  This run ended up being very similar to my last few.  I was able to hold the pace for 22 minutes and then had to slow the pace a coupe of times to maintain my heart rate range.  I competed 35 minutes of tempo.  I will continue to work at this as I know that, with time, I can get my goal of an hour at this challenging pace.

PM: There was a very small turn out for the group ride.  Typically, Thursday nights are a smaller crowd, but there were only three of us riding.  I was actually surprised because the temperature was gorgeous.  Upper 60s….what a treat!  One of the guys riding was one I typically pair up with anyway, so the smaller group was not an issue at all.  I was feeling heavy legs on the ride, but none the less, I enjoyed the 22 miles on a beautiful night!

Friday:

Rest Day

Saturday:
41 mile ride.  Two words can describe it…TOUGH DAY!  I can’t remember when I have had such a difficult ride.  My legs never got the memo that they were being summoned to ride well.  I have been riding so well lately and loving every minute of it.  I guess it takes a day like this to keep everything in perspective and despite having gains and making progress, the days that you have to overcome can pop up anytime.  As Tony commented…”better today than race day”…I could not agree more!!

Sunday:  
The last long run of my training plan.  To be completely honest (and that is why I have this blog), I was not excited about this run at all.  I think the ride from Saturday had me doubting that I would have a solid run on Sunday.  The plan was not to push hard, but really go on how I was feeling.  Tony suggested we run in the surrounding neighborhoods which meant a fairly challenging course.   I tried to mentally just push my doubts aside and give it my best.  To sum up this run, I will say that the body can really throw you curve balls.  I had a stellar run and felt on top of the world when I finished.  To add to that, my first mile and last last were my two fastest!  YES!

last long run

Total training time:  8 hours 30 minutes
Swim:  4,665 yards
Bike:  88.3 miles
Run:  13.5 miles

This current week, May 25, is my taper week headed into Sunday’s race.

Monday: 
Since it was Memorial Day, I was able to take advantage of hitting the pool in the afternoon.  After a warm-up, I completed one 1500-yard set, followed by a cool down.  I felt good and smooth in the water.

Tuesday:
40-minute spin on the trainer.  I used the Spinervals DVD called “No Slackers” and it is always a good, solid workout.

On a side note, we have a house guest for the week that is in town for the race.  She is so generous that she offered the use of her recovery boots while she was here.  I have tried these before and they are so awesome that I just HAD to take her up on the offer.  So cool!

boots1

Wednesday:  
I planned to take my 5-mile run outside, but incoming storms prompted me to move to the treadmill.  Once again, I was to run based on how how I felt, which ended up being pretty good.  This was my last run prior to race day!

boots

A second evening in the boots!

Thursday:
AM: 30 minute spin on the trainer.  5 minute warm-up, 20 minute steady, 5 minute cool down.  This was a good last training spin of the week!

PM: 1500-yard swim.  Mixed up some 200, 100 and 25 sets at varying paces.  This was my final workout of my Raleigh 70.3 training plan!!

So, today is Friday and race weekend has begun.

Slide1

Today and tomorrow will consist of packet pick up, getting gear organized and packed, prepping the bike (for Saturday check-in), eating well, HYDRATING and staying off my feet as much as possible.  Overall, I feel ready for my third 70.3/half iron distance race. While I have some solid goals going into race day, ultimately, I want to give it my best, race smart and have fun!  The weather may be one of the biggest challenges of the day, but one that everyone will have to contend with.  At the end of it all, the key is this…

Test Ourselves

 

 

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Monday:
AM: 60 minutes yoga. I somehow convinced Tony to join me for an early morning yoga session. It was nice to have company, but I think he did not actually realize what time the alarm would be going off in order to get up for an hour of yoga! It does us all good so I am glad he followed through!

PM: I would normally swim on Monday evening, but I had a schedule conflict, so the swim did not happen.

Tuesday:
30 mile ride with TriLife. Once again, there was a good turnout for the ride. Three groups were roughly established and the first two groups headed out for warm-up together. Sometimes the “warm-up” disappears and it is “all out” from the beginning. I really prefer at least a bit of time to get the legs moving before kicking it up a big notch. We had a good warm-up this time before really getting the legs going.

After the warm-up, the “A” group gradually separated themselves from us in the “B”. Unfortunately, it did not take long, before the B group broke up due to stop signs and traffic. The one thing about this Tuesday route that I don’t prefer is that there are a lot of left turns. This fact, along with the increased traffic due to it being after work (it seemed even heavier than normal), resulted in a break of the group. I was in the side that got left behind, but luckily, I was with two other guys that I have ridden with numerous times that are strong riders.

After finally rolling again after a very long stop, the three of us got in a really great rhythm and made up a good amount of time that we had lost. We eventually caught back up, which was cool. While I was really working hard, I was having a blast. I noticed numerous times the scent of honeysuckle in the air.  That is something that I always enjoy!

This ended up being an awesome ride with an average speed of 20.5mph.  Excited can not say enough about that!

I rounded out my workout with a 2-mile brick.

Happy Bike

Wednesday:
AM: Tempo run first thing in the morning. I have been working at the current tempo for a couple of weeks and it has been tough. After a very solid bike the previous evening, I was not sure what was in the tank, but as I do, I gave it my best. Unfortunately, I was not able to do as well with this run as I have in the past couple tempos. My heart rate started out fine and remained fine for a while. However, I felt my heavy legs early on. While my stretch goal was 45 minutes, I wanted to hit at least 35 at tempo, since that I what I was able to hit the week before. Unfortunately, at around 20 minutes, I knew that I had to reduce my speed, if there was anyway to make it to the 35-minute mark. I reduced my speed by .2 and was able to maintain for an additional 5 minutes. Then at the 25-minute mark I had to knock it down again by .2 for the remaining 10 minutes. My legs just DID NOT have it that morning. I was able to keep my heart rate within the desired zone, but only because I had reduced my speed. After the 35 minutes, I did not even want to run the 5 minute cool down, but I knew I needed it. While I thought I had emptied the tank last week, this run really did the job!

PM: First open water swim of the season! If memory serves me correctly, I have not swum open water since being in Mirror Lake for IMLP! I was ready to pull on the wet suit, get in the lake and swim somewhere other than the pool! The main goal for this swim, was just to feel the open water again, get comfortable/relaxed and incorporate my sighting again. It went well and it was almost as if it had NOT been 9 months since my last open water!

Once area that I struggle with is swimming straight. While I was sighting, there are really no landmarks or trees to sight to when we swim the direction we did in the lake that evening. I knew I was kind of all over the place (especially on the way back), but with the buoys during a race, I do straighten a bit:).

I completed 1.27 miles at 1:56 avg/yard pace.  I was happy with this swim!!

Thursday:
With a race planned for Saturday, we decided that I would add another easy day to my normal rest day of Friday, to give my legs a bit more rest. Especially, since I had a couple of hard efforts already in the week. I did an hour stretch video and felt really great and loose afterward!

Friday:
Normal rest day

Saturday:
Cary Long Course Duathlon (Race Report)

Sunday:
Today was a planned swim day.  I knew it would be good to meet up with the open water swim group to get in another session.  My opportunities are becoming few before race day!  That morning into the afternoon, Tony and I spent time doing chores.  First we did some work in the yard and then tackled some things around the house.  When we finally finished up around 3:00, I was tired and I totally did not feel like the swim meet up at 5:00.  I relaxed for a bit and felt a smidge better.  I decided to go for it and get in the swim even though my energy level was low.

Just DO It

This swim ended up being less than stellar.  I got in .93 miles and just about every stroke was a struggle.  I was as slow as I have been in forever.   Still, I got it done and sometimes that is enough of a take away for training.

Lake

It was a warm, but a beautiful day to be out at Falls Lake.

Total training time:  9 hours 21 minutes
Swim:  2.2 miles
Bike:  65.84 miles
Run:  17.48 miles

For a second week in a row, I spent a good amount of time on the foam roller.  I focused on the legs, but especially on my right glute where I experience a lot of achiness.  I feel this increased focus with more frequent foam rolling has helped!

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This week ended up being the biggest volume week for me in quite some time.  In hindsight, it was a great week with lots of positive take aways!

Monday:
PM: Another swim to start the week.  With the long sets from last week, I decided on some speed sets for this session.  It was a workout from my Ironman plan that I have used numerous times because it is good.  It is also easy to adjust to go longer or shorter in total yards, so I will share this workout with you all.

2200 Swim:
W/U: 500 easy mix with swim/drills/pull/kick incorporated throughout
Main Set (1500 yds): 10x(100 moderate/:15sec rest/50 FAST), :30sec rest between intervals  [THE NUMBER OF SETS CAN EASILY BE MODIFIED TO FEWER (8) OR MORE 10, 12, ETC]
C/D: 200 easy

As I got into my warm-up, I was starting to feel a little unsure if my good pool feelings from last week would carry over.  Usually, I am very consistent in the pool.  If I am having a “good day” it is generally like that for the entire workout…the same is true for the less than stellar days.  This day was a bit unusual for me.  It started out tough for about half of the main set, but then it kind of turned around with some decent momentum.  The later splits were definitely more of what I expected to see.   It ended on a high note for sure!

So one random note to share about the pool.  Apparently there is a life guard “shortage” in Raleigh, which seems odd to me for this time of year.  Regardless, the net effect is that starting May 4 (which was this day), the pool would start closing to the public at 7pm, instead of 8pm, an hour early, for the month of May.  That means a HUGE time crunch for me!  I typically leave work at 5pm and the drive to the pool with typical commute varies…can be up to 45 minutes.  So on Monday, I flew out the door from work and had my fingers crossed that traffic would cooperate (not typical) and I ended up lucky on this first day of the new schedule.  We shall see what happens as we go forward.  There will be less dilly dallying for me and I will be on a mission to change and get in the pool as soon as I can!  I will start open water swimming one day during the work week, probably next week, so that will help some.  It is frustrating though!

Tuesday:
AM:  One hour yoga…oh so good!

PM: 25 mile ride with the TriLife group.  There was another good turnout for this ride and we were divided three groups…21-22+ pace, 18-20 pace and @16 pace.  I jumped on group #2 and there were 8 of us total (until we somehow picked up two late arrivers, about half way in the ride).  I was fortunate to be able to ride with some strong riders with a few of the guys routinely taking the pull.  It was an awesome ride.  The evening was gorgeous and while I was working hard, it was so enjoyable.  I ended up with an average of 20mph, so I was PUMPED at the end of the ride.  I topped it off with a 2 mile brick.

Has anyone tried Picky Bars?  I had one for the first time before the ride and I enjoyed this flavor.  I really like that they all natural and made by athletes!  Just a random share…

picky bar

Wednesday:
AM: Tempo run at my new pace, established last week.  30 minutes was the total main set time for last week and I had hopes to push the total time with this run.  After the 5 minute warm-up, I pretty quickly realized I was in for a challenge.  I was working hard, but keeping my heart rate reasonable for these tempos.  At the 15 minute mark, I actually jumped to the sides to take a quick breather.  I felt like I was trying to keep up with the pace, if that makes sense at all.  While my heart rate was still yet not a factor as I neared 30 minutes, I knew I did not have much left in the tank.  Instead of option #1 of lowering the pace a bit to get more time, I decided to just empty the tank at the current pace.  I ran an additional 5 minutes by mentally agreeing the the “hurdles” of 2 more minutes, 1 more minute, 2 more minutes, until I had the 5.  My heart rate was up to around the highest I wanted, so I knew I had given what I had.   Five minute cool down and that was a wrap!

PM: I had the pleasure task of repeating my super long set swim from last week.  This session consisted of a 500 warm-up, main set of 1 x 1500, 1 x 1000 and 200 cool down.  To be honest with you, my mind was not in the game for this.  I was fine with swimming, but the idea of those looooog sets again, really numbed my mind.  So, what’s a girl to do?

Suck it up

So, that’s what I did.  I did a good job of hanging in.  All the same thoughts as when I swam the session the prior week of “is this ever going to end…??”, but I knocked it out.  I had to cut out 100 yards of my cool down since the clock was ticking toward the (now earlier) closing time of 7:00pm, so I completed 3100 yards total.  I was again fortunate to have cooperation from traffic on my drive to the pool, so I was able to get in my full working set, which is the most important.

Thursday:
PM: Another group ride from the TriLife shop.  There is always a smaller turn out for the later in the week ride and the route is a bit shorter, but none the less, it was still a great outing!

Friday:

Rest

The weather for the weekend was not originally forecasted to be ideal, but it was not going to be a wash out either. It required trying to figure out the best time to train and work around the rain.

Get in long run

Saturday we decided to roll out around 8:30. We figured this should give us plenty of time to get in the ride and stay dry. We figured it would be overcast and grey the entire ride, but no drops.

Bike Pic

My cycling peeps…Susanne and the hubbie, Tony

60 miles was the plan and we decided to mix things up a bit. While the routes were ones we regularly ride, we switched up the order and direction a bit, to keep some variety. We revisited the newly paved highway (still not fully open to traffic), from our ride a few weeks ago, to take advantage of smoooooth road.

The morning ended up being fairly nice because the sun broke. A few times we had a VERY stiff head wind, but it was one of those days when it was only a head wind at times we were headed in the “wrong” direction. (Not one of those days where it seems like no matter the direction, the wind is against you…).  Overall the ride was good and my legs felt decent at the end.

Sunday: Once again, we were planning our start time based on what it seemed the weather was going to do. We had originally decided to start at 9:30am, but once we were up in the morning and checking the latest forecast, we thought it was wise to move it up 30 minutes. Our friend Tim had committed to join us for the run and he suggested that we take to the Raleigh IM 70.3 course.

Run Pic

Tim and Tony in for the 13.1 with me!

While Tony and Tim are both faster runners than me, they were both ran with me. While this is something Tony does regularly, Tim had just completed a marathon the weekend before, so a run at a slower pace, was a good idea for him. While, I ran this course in 2013, the course changed in 2014. While the changes made it easier overall I was still interested in refreshing my memory of what the run would be like. The changes from the 2013 inaugural year essentially took out the back end of the course that included running on the greenway and around the NC Museum of Art. These sections were hilly and the most challenging. So, with the elimination of this section, it became a 2-loop course. The existing route has some rollers, but not too bad for downtown Raleigh. The biggest challenge with this run course comes with what has historically been very warm temperatures and essentially no shade on the course.

While the temperature was not bad, we quickly noticed within the first couple of miles, how incredible HUMID it was. It was completely overcast, but I was dripping with sweat before we had made it too far along on the course.  We had a bit of a quick rain shower while we were headed back in on the first loop, which felt good, but did not last too long (not long enough…).

If I can pull out this same run on race day, I will be more than thrilled!

Run Garmin

Total training time:  11 hours 34 minutes
Swim:  5,300 yards
Bike:  102.16 miles
Run:  20.57 miles

I took a different focus during this training week and instead of the PT exercises I have been doing regularly, I have spent a good amount of time on the foam roller.  I focused on the legs, but especially on my right glute where I experience a lot of achiness.  I have the “rumble roller” and the various little stubs allows me to really hone in on the knots and very specific areas.  I think this has really helped and now I need to find the balance of the roller and the PT exercises that works for me!

rumble roller

The Rumble Roller!!!

 

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After a much needed recovery week, I was ready for another challenging week. I made some choices this week that involved some shifting of scheduled workouts, but it all seemed to fall into place just fine!

Monday:
PM: Here we go. This was the first of two long set sessions in the pool planned for the week.  I had some “good pool feelings” coming off the prior day’s end of the training week session, so I knew I could make this a good one.  I had not swum 1000 sets in a long time, but I was ready.  My session consisted of a 500 warm-up, main set of 2 x 1000 and 200 cool down.  I was not overly concerned with time.  I just wanted to get in a couple of solid long sets where I felt good and strong.  I was able to do just that.   My “good pool feelings” were still in play after my swim.  Score!!

me and pool

One of the themes for the week

Tuesday:
We had a last minute dinner invitation come up Monday evening for Tuesday and it was with some friends that we don’t see too often, so I told Tony that I would rearrange my training to make it work.  My original plan was to ride with the TriLife group in the evening, so it was an easy adjustment to plan for the trainer in the morning.  60 minutes on the trainer (5 w/u; 3×15 minutes at an effort to “hang onto the draft”, 5 min recovery between).  Tony thought up this session so it was he who told me to maintain an effort as if I were trying to hold onto a pace line.  This obviously equates to a hard effort, but still being able hold the full 15-minute block.  I had a 5-minute recovery between sets.  After the bike, I jumped on the treadmill for a 2 mile brick.  All was good.

Wednesday:
AM: A tempo run was on the plan.  Since my last week prior to recovery I hit the hour mark with the set pace for tempo, it was time to push the pace up again.  I had the same rules to try the new pace…maintain a desired heart rate zone.  Honestly, I was not sure what this would bring.  I was running at a pace on the treadmill that I have not run for tempo efforts.  Therefore, in the end, I was pleased to hit the 30 minute main set goal at this new pace (started with 5 minute warm-up and ended with 5 minute cool down).  It was a challenge, but I was thrilled!

PM:  After Monday’s swim, I was still feeling positive, even though I had another long set planned.  This session consisted of a 500 warm-up, main set of 1 x 1500, 1 x 1000 and 200 cool down.  I knew the 1500 would be tough without wanting to go crazy due to the sheer number of non-stop laps, but I would give it my best.  I remember getting to lap #13 and thinking that I was not even to the halfway mark!!!  This set will never end!  UGH!  But once again, I simply focused on solid efforts where I felt in control of my breathing and form.  After the 1500, I was pleased when my Garmin showed my pace and it was better than the 1000 efforts from Monday.  YES!!  The following 1000 set did not feel too bad in length, considering the comparison.  It was a great swim for me and in hindsight, these two longs sets were really needed.

Thursday:
AM: With another evening of plans, I got my workout completed in the morning.  My plan had me to complete the Spinervals 3.0 DVD (also known as “Suffer-o-Rama”), which includes a bunch of high intensity intervals.  It had been a while since I used this workout, so I did not remember exactly how tough (but GOOD) it was.  This is an old school DVD, but it is 50 minutes of bang for my buck!  No wasted time or effort here.

Friday:

Rest Day

The weekend plans for Saturday and Sunday kept getting shifted back and forth up until late Friday evening. It was a matter of taking advantage of timing and training partners!

Saturday:
14 mile run on the greenway with Tony. We had a beautiful morning as we started around 8:45. The high for the day was forecasted to be in the low 70s, so when we got going, we started with upper 50s.

Long Run

The first part of the run I think I felt better in comparison to my most recent long runs. I was really concentrating on my cadence and trying to maintain as close to 90 as possible. I would allow myself to check my cadence reading on my Garmin, but would try to not look at mileage in between mile splits (when the notification sounds). As we progressed, I started to feel like we would never make it to the turn around point. Then after hitting the half way mark, it was just a matter of ticking the miles off. I would have moments that felt tough and then they would ease up and I felt better. It went back and forth like that for a large part of the second half. The last few miles were just of matter of keeping my head in the game and finishing as strong as possible. Overall, I was pleased with my performance. Ideally, I would have loved a sub 9:00/minute average pace, but 9:02 for 14 miles is solid for me. It keeps me completely on track for the pace I would like to hit come race day.

Long Run Time

I had an early afternoon family activity and then the remainder of the day/evening, we spent relaxing on the couch, taking a couple of cat naps, watching the Derby, cooking dinner and then watching a movie later on. I also spent a good amount of time on the foam roller and stretching, since I knew that would be important for trying to have a productive training session on Sunday!

Sunday:
I met my riding buddy Susanne early afternoon and we planned to ride part of the Raleigh 70.3 course. The bike route is point to point, so the logistics of riding the course are not easy to maneuver. The route has changed this year so I was especially interested in riding the “new” sections of the route. Since I raced in 2013, I know what to expect as far as the majority of the bike route, but certainly did not know anything about the new section. Once I looked closely at the route map, I was surprised at how much has changed. Initially, when I heard about the change, I was expecting more of a minor adjustment, but much of the middle has a new route. I really wanted to take advantage of the course being local and ride it in training.

We did an out and back at a total of 52 miles. Therefore, 26 of the actual course was covered. I am mixed about the new section. Susanne mentioned that she thought it made the overall route easier, but initially I was thinking just the opposite. She seems to have a better memory than me on a lot of other things, so maybe she is right, Regardless, it contains some rollers, which is the tone of the majority of the original course. Nothing too difficult, but smartly working your gears is important. We had a beautiful day to ride and it ended up being probably the warmest day I have ridden this year, but still not hot. My legs held up better than I really thought they would after Saturday’s long run, so bonus there!

Total training time:  9 hours 57 minutes
Swim: 5,900 yards
Bike: 76.66 miles
Run: 20.8 miles

I also incorporate twice daily PT exercises that are meant to strengthen/stretch my glutes, hamstrings and re-align my hips. This probably averages about 25 minutes a day and I have not included that in the above totals. However, this is probably one of the smartest things I am doing daily!

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This week marked another recovery week and I think the timing was perfect. Time to scale back a bit after three solid weeks of quality training.

fatigue

That’s why we have recovery weeks!!!

Monday:
PM: 2700-yard swim was planned. I got through my warm-up and a little over half of the main set, when the lifeguards notified the swimmers that thunder had been heard and the pool would be closing for a minimum of 30 minutes. I thought I was in the clear when I arrived at the pool. We had thunderstorms move through the area a bit earlier.  I called the pool after I left work and the pool was closed to swimming at the time but planned to re-open in 10 minutes. Since it seemed like the main line of storms had already moved through, I thought all would be good to get in my full swim. I was ready to get through this workout so I was bummed that I had to end early.  I was able to complete 1825 yards.

Tuesday:
AM: 1 hour yoga: This session felt especially great this morning. I knew I still had plenty of tightness from the weekend’s training sessions, so my body definitely needed it.

PM: 30 mile ride with the TriLife group. It was a rain and thunderstorm free evening, so I was happy! The weather was beautiful with the temperatures in the low 70s when we clipped in. This group ride had a good turn out and lots of variety in pacing. There was a group tagged to ride 20+, a group to ride under 20 and then a third group to ride around 16. The first two groups rode off together to get in the warm up and would further break up after we got going. It was a quick paced warm-up, but we all hung together. After about 10-15 minutes into the ride, the 20+ small group took off and then the rest of us in the second group were rolling. As we settled in, you see others that are naturally hanging together. I ended up riding with two others and we worked together and alternated taking the lead. As is typical, this was a good, challenging ride and I pushed myself. We ended up with an average pace of 19.1. I will take it!!!

Unfortunately, my right glute and hip were feeling pretty achy that evening afterward. Tony rubbed it out which helped, but I was sore.

Wednesday:
I had planned to run in the morning, but due to my soreness, I decided to pass on the run. I had a PT appointment that evening, so this ended up being a training free day. My PT gave me a couple new drills to work on and he also watched me run on the treadmill. His main feedback for me was that he wants me to work on increasing my cadence. He suggested that if I have “quicker” feet, there would be a lessened impact to my body. I have never really been able to maintain a 90 cadence consistently, usually mid to upper 80s, so this is something I will definitely be focusing on.

Thursday:
PM: 22.5 mile ride from the TriLife store.  There was a smaller turn out for this ride, as compared to Tuesday, but still decent.   The first 3o minutes or so as we headed out were very quick. The pace eased up cosiderably in the miiddle and then back up a bit toward the end.  Tony rode this ride too, so I stuck with him and two other guys for most of the ride.  It was awesome that we had better weather this week and I was able to ride outside twice with the group!

Friday:

Jovi Rest2

Saturday:
8-mile run outside.  The weather for the entire weekend looked gloomy and chilly, so we got out mid-morning with the plan to complete the run before showers moved in.  Tony and I ran from the house throughout the surrounding neighborhoods.  This is a tough route with lots of hills. The exact route we had run a few weeks ago, but just added on an additional mile. I felt pretty good on this run, but did not seem to have an extra gear for my pace, especially early on. I was not really trying to push it too much, but my effort should have dictated a quicker pace. No concerns though, as it was recovery week.  We made it home before the chilly rain, so great timing!

Sunday:
3100-yard swim:  This was a good swim for me. I had not swum anything over 500 yards (in a continuous set) in quite some time and the first set of 600 felt very smooth in the water and my balance and timing were good.  My 300s were very consistent with one another. The 200s were pretty much in line with the fast/moderate/slow efforts I used. The 100s were not as the pace I would have liked, but I was definitely feeling some fatigue and as a result I felt my form compromise a bit, but overall, a lot of good stuff to take away!

I will share this workout with you since I don’t think I have before. I think it is a good one and I encourage you to give it a try!

W/U: 500 easy mix with swim/drills/pull/kick incorporated throughout
Main Set (2400 yds):
-600 easy-to-moderate, 1min rest
-2×300 easy/moderate, :30sec rest between intervals
-3×200 easy/moderate/fast, :30sec rest between intervals
-6×100 build each 100, :30sec rest between intervals
C/D: 200 easy

Later that day…..

MASSAGE!!!!!

…….just what I needed.  It had been entirely too long since my last massage and I am a big proponent of them, especially during training.  I finally got one scheduled and it was awesome!

Total training time:  6 hours 48 minutes
Swim: 4,925 yards
Bike: 52.4 miles
Run: 8 miles
Other: 1 hour

I also incorporate twice daily PT exercises that are meant to strengthen/stretch my glutes, hamstrings and re-align my hips. This probably averages about 25 minutes a day and I have not included that in the above totals. However, this is probably one of the smartest things I am doing daily!