Monday, October 20, 2014

Almost Perfection!

This past week I had an amazing training week.  Quite possibly my best ever.  The main reason behind that is that I only missed one work out, which for me, sadly enough, is huge.  I only missed my swim on Wednesday.  But I don't even care, because I got all 5 strength trainings in, 4 runs, and 2 hard bikes.  And the kicker?  I felt great through all of it!  My body held up well, I felt great physically and mentally I felt like quite the rock star.

If I can keep up this great momentum, I will be ready for IMTX!  I love it when I get into a good groove, and I am determined to keep it going.  I know that the inevitable will happen, that thing called life, but I am thrilled with such a good week. Not only did I do all the work outs, but they went well.  I nailed the intervals on the runs.  I was able to increase the weight on some of the strength exercises that I do.  I was able to nail the intervals and have a solid Zone 2 bike ride and I didn't feel like crawling into a fetal position and dying when I finished a Sufferfest video earlier in the week.  Yes, I call all of those a success!

So, here's to more great training.  I enjoyed my regular Sunday rest day yesterday and I hit the gym again this morning, both for strength and a treadmill run.  Who would have ever thought that I would enjoy treadmill runs?  Ok, maybe enjoy isn't quite the word I am looking for, but I tolerate them.  I have found that by breaking them up with intervals and good music I can handle up to 45 minutes without wanting to hurt anyone.  And, it is nice to get the entire workout done in one shot, strength immediately followed by the cardio.

That's it for this Monday, Happy racing and training all!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

What my off-season really looks like

I had grand plans of running every day, and swimming once a week, and strength training 5 days a week after work.  Well, boy was I stupid to think I could pull all of that off! I mean, it all sounds great, but then I forgot to take several things into consideration.

1) My schedule.  I teach full time and have to be to work by 7 am.  This means that to do morning training I have to do it at 4 am if it means that I can still be done in time to get myself and two kids out the door and be here on time.  And after school is crazy with the kids and their extracurricular activities and still doing all the Mom stuff.  Ken's new assignment has him working a ton more, so he is easily putting in 70 hours a week, so that doesn't give him much of a chance to pitch in either.

2)  My body.  I can keep up that kind of training, but not with the strength.  I have never implemented strength training while tri training, so I have had a hard time finding the sweet spot in doing it with out it effecting my ability to run and bike the way I want.  Any soreness or fatigue from strength training carries over to biking and cycling, so I need to find the way to do it better.  I am not giving up, because I really enjoy the strength training, but I need to work out these kinks.

3)  I hate pool swimming.  And they only have late night hours.  And yes, 9-10 pm is "late night" to someone who is up most days by 4 am.  So, I haven't swam since Age Group Nationals in August.  Luckily for me, swimming is my strong suit, and I can completely neglect it and still do well.  I do plan on swimming tonight though, and have enlisted a friend to meet me there for accountability :)

So what does a typical week training wise look like for me?  I am running about 4 days a week (still way  more than I did all summer) and hit the elliptical a couple times a week, to avoid too much impact.  My IT Band and shin splints can get cranky, so this seems to be working okay.  I also have put my Belle on the trainer, so it is Sufferfest videos or Nashville episodes on the DVR for my bike training.  I am completely ignoring the speed and mileage for these workouts because it simply isn't accurate on the trainer.  I go for time and heart rate.  I forgot how much I love/hate Sufferfest!  It's brutal but no doubt an incredible workout.  I have been doing these workouts 2-3 times a week.

I strength train in that hour between me being done at work and having to pick up my kids.  It usually involves me doing 20-30 minutes of strength and time on the elliptical before I have to get the kids.  I have been following loosely Jamie Easton's beginning Livefit plan off  I thoroughly enjoy this gym time and am starting to see more definition in my arms, shoulders, and abs. 

Pretty much all of this training is happening right after school or later in the evening.  4:00 am sucks.  However, Joshua now has swim practice 3x a week after school and Janae is starting dance, so I will have to suck it up, but for now, it is working and still getting done more days one way or another. 

I am also trying really hard to go easy on myself if I miss a workout or have to cut it short for the time being.  I know that when my official IMTX training plan starts on December 15, I will have to be more disciplined, and I want to for now find a good balance between taking somewhat of a break while still maintaining some fitness and remaining active.  I don't see this being problem as the base expected for the start of the training plan is being able swim 800 yards, bike for 1 hour and run 7 miles without difficulty.  No problem there!  I really want to avoid burning out too, which I have had happen.

So, in the meantime, Happy training and racing all!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Kona Coverage!!

I have never really been into watching any sporting event, other than the Olympics, on TV, until I got into triathlon, and now I anxiously look forward to streaming over 8 hours of the live race from the Ironman World Championships.  The IronSherpa doesn't understand it at all, but he's the one that DVR's at least 3 foot ball games a week and then watches them back to back, so he has no room to talk on this front :)  Anyhow,  I got up and went for an awesome trail run with some friends and was back in plenty of time to stream this on my Ipad during the day as I did my Saturday chores.

I was rooting for Andy Potts or Crowie for the men, and Linsey Corbin or Meredith Kessler for the women.  None of the above podiumed, but who cares? (Well, I am sure they do) It was a great race to watch!!

The thing that made this year different is that Joshua actually has taken an interest in the sport, with completing his first tri in August, and he has also done track and is getting ready to start swim team.  He watched it on and off all day with me, and he really got into it!  He went to the grocery store with me and insisted upon streaming it on my phone so that he wouldn't miss anything.  It was fun to sit in a way too long drive through at Fiiz for a drink and watch parts of the bike portion with him.  It is fun to share this hobby and interest with someone else in my family.  We had some good discussions about nutrition, pacing, etc, and I can't tell you how much I enjoyed that!

Joshua is really excited about me doing IMTX.  He told me that I have to buy a finisher's jacket and wear it EVERYWHERE I go.  Not sure if I want to be that guy, but it is sweet that he is proud of me for doing this and wants his mom to show it off.  Now don't get me wrong, I fully intend on spending probably a ridiculous amount of money on finisher's gear and apparel, but I won't wear it everywhere. But I made sure that in our budget planning for IMTX, there is definitely a good amount allotted to "merchandise".  WTC loves suckers like me!

This morning Joshua is telling me to enter the Kona lottery, because even though he thinks his mom is Superwoman (I'll enjoy this until he turns 15, when I am sure it will change), qualifying isn't going to happen.  Nope, not this year, but wouldn't it be the trip of a lifetime to even go and volunteer?  I would love to be a bike catcher or do whatever, I wouldn't care.  It would be great just to be there!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Race Day Nerves..221 days out?!?!

Ironman Texas is 221 days away.  That is 7.5 months.  Plenty of time, right?  My official training plan doesn't even start for another 8 weeks, and I have had a pretty solid off season, so why am I freaking out already?!?!?!
I think about this race every day.  I imagine different scenarios.  I think about what we'll do with our time in Houston.  I think about what I want to eat after 140.6 miles.  I think about the technicalities of being gone a week...arrangements for the kids, sub plans for work, who will take my kids for the week, which hotel to stay in (I can't make up my mind, so I currently have 2 booked that I can cancel), paying for all of it, etc.  Then I think about the swim and the mass start and how it kinda (no really) scares the crap out of me.  I think about how sore my butt will be for 6+ hours on the bike. I worry about running 26.2 miles after the bike and swim.  I worry about how being from Northern Utah 90% of my bike training will be on the trainer.  I worry about what to wear during the race...race kit the whole time?  Change in each transition?  Yikes!
Then I think of the sheer task of propelling myself for 140.6 miles.  What the crap am I thinking?!?!  When I crunch numbers in my head about how long I think it will take, that is a long freaking day!!
I guess that you could say that the good thing in all of this is that it propels me to train and take it seriously.  I don't want to NOT be prepared for this race.  I have been undertrained for a couple of events I have done and that is NO fun. I have finished those and felt the regret of not being prepared and that SUCKS.  I don't want to be in that position for this race, and I know that I will have a solid base and that I have a good training plan picked out as well.  So, as long as I stick to all of that I will be fine.  But it doesn't keep me from stressing about it and having my stomach turn on occasion when I think about this race!  Someone please tell me this is normal?  I have had race nerves before, but the earliest I have ever had them is just a few days before!  I can't imagine how they will be race week!
So, with all that in mind, it motivates me to start this week and recommit myself every day and do what I know that I need to do to be ready.  Thank heavens for a supportive family and the best support crew ever!
In the meantime, Happy Racing and Training all!