Hey! Still waiting for someone to send some warmer weather. We have been kinda house bound and I am waiting to get some fresh air and try the ski trails out again. On the bright side, I have had lots of time to spend in the pain cave to get some serious running and biking miles in.
I wanted to talk about my training. My year is divided into into blocks; Jan- April, April- Aug, Aug- Dec.
Jan- April is full on training for an event at the end of March/beginning of April. This is usually in a warmer location south. I usually have 1 lead up run prior to the event.
April- Aug is more training for an end of July/beginning of Aug event with usually 2-3 lead up events. I also usually enter another couple of events mid Aug that are close to home and after my second main event.
Aug- Dec has become my "off season" with a lot of spontaneous, flexible training that is inconsistent but led by my desire.
So, I have planned my year to have 2 "A" events with about 2 or 3 lead up"B" events and a couple "C" events.
My training this year is radically different than it was last year (at this time).
Last year's training block from Aug- Dec was spent in Maffetone training. An off season program of keeping my heart rate down while building up miles and a good cardio base was good for the next step- half ironman training from Jan- Mar. My event was the end of March so I had 16 weeks to get long and fast.
My next main event was another half ironman early in July. Interestingly enough, I discovered that the long, cold winter actually works well for training as there is not much else pulling on my time (gardening, yard, school year end). I would have liked my time to have improved the second time but it was almost exactly the same. However, I have participated in enough endurance events to know that comparison is very difficult as each time you race, it is a whole new set of everything.
Overall, though, I was satisfied with the year. Looking to always improve, but as bad as some things seem, it can always be worse. I am thankful.
This year, I have trained pretty hard Nov and Dec with more a speed building off season program. The workouts haven't been long- tops an hour and a half- but they have been very purposeful and intense. I did a 5 km time trial on the treadmill at the beginning of Nov and then repeated it the end of Dec. I also did a time trial on my bike, also at the beginning and end. Interesting enough, I had small improvements number wise. The big improvements were made mentally as I didn't think I could hold a certain pace for a certain length like I was repeatedly doing.
A lot of people will say their purpose for participating in endurance sports is to push themselves to the very limits of what they can do. To see what they are made of. I have been fighting health issues for a couple years and battle each day so the running, biking and swimming is my time AWAY from the discomfort. I push, want to do well, and have drive but didn't want to really suffer. I can see this now as I had to dig really, really deep during most of my workout lately to hit the numbers I wanted to. I have some things figured out health wise and hope I will understand my body's need better in the months ahead. I believe I am working in the right direction and I KNOW that when I have it consistently figured out- I will really be able to fly. I know the biggest decision I am facing right now is will my 2nd "A" event in July be a half ironman or the full? My husband says he knows I can do it but it depends on how much I want to suffer. That is the real issue.
This week (JAN 5-11) I have completed week 1 of half ironman training. I have 11 weeks to go until my event in March- Ironman Oceanside. Yesterday and today's training was full on bike miles and so after spending more time in the saddle than I have for awhile- my butt hurts. Actually, to be more specific, not only do my seat bones hurt but the creases between the groin and trunk hurt. Almost tempted to lose the underwear under my sweats today- haha. Need a little toughening- good.
So this week's training looked like this: Week 1
Mon- core workout, day off
Tues- crappy 3 mile run (sore everything- not off to a good start)
Wed-1 hour 45 min ride 26 miles
Thurs-1 1/2 hour run 8.25 miles
Fri- 50 min swim 2000 m
Sat- 3 hour ride 43 miles, 1/2 hour run 3.25 miles
Sun- 2 hour ride 31 miles
I did 3 days (10 min)of additional strengthening exercises.
Total 115 miles, 11 hours
Have a great sweaty week!