Thursday, October 3, 2013

Ironman Training Update

It's been approximately...umm.... a lot of weeks since I last gave an update of my training for Beach2Battleship 140.6.  That was week 18 and I'm not at week 27 of my training.

Overall the training has gone well.  I've had a few a weeks where I've had trouble getting my swims in. I've probably hit about 60% of them but I'm OK with that considering the nature of the swim for B2B (it's with the current, protected from the ocean).  I plan to get all of them in until the race. (3 sessions for at roughly 2 miles each).

I definitely have a lot to improve on with the swim so I plan to take a a Masters Swim class this offseason and into next season.

I've hit pretty much all my planned rides except for when I was racing (Pigman Tri, Disney Dumbo Double Dare... yes, a race report is coming!!) and a weekend family trip to Branson.  I've been concerned about my cycling coming into August but I'm definitely feeling confident now.  I'm reaching 5.5 to 6 hour rides on the weekend and I usually start at 5am.

A couple things about my rides lately:

  • The last two weekends have been really cold.  The air temp is about 50 degrees when I start but the wind chill has been reaching 35 degrees, especially in the foggy sections of my routes.
  • On my ride a few weeks ago I had a little snafu shifting uphill and ended up flipping over my handlebars (Yeah, I'm pretty damn talented) but landed "softly" in the ditch.  My only injury was cutting up my middle finger on my left hand (which contributed to missing a few swim sessions).   I had about 45 minutes left of my ride.  I used my bondiband as a bandage and limped home.    I decided to take the most direct route, which happened to be during the run portion of the Heartland Heat Triathlon!  I had a little fun with that.  ("Pssss... don't tell the race officials", "$100 to borrow my bike!").
  • Nutrition is key on the bike, as I'll talk about in a moment.
  • I had my first century ride last weekend!  Sure, I had only planned a 5.5 hour ride, but I added 20 minutes to just get it!

As I mentioned in my Head For The Cure race report, I have seen some great improvement in my running discipline with all this cross training.  Not only that but throwing down a 19 mile run seems like nothing.  Granted, the 6 hour bike ride the day before makes my 2 hour, 45 minute run so much faster.

As I mentioned above, nutrition is key.  I did a 92 mile bike ride and then followed it up with a 1 hour run.  That particular day I only consumed about half as much on the ride as I had planned and I ended up bonking 3 miles into the run.  Those 3 miles felt great but then I just ran out of energy and walked home.  I almost called TKB to pick me up.

The next week I did 101 miles on the bike while consuming the calories as I had planned and then had one of the best runs ever.  I even hit a 7:01 minute mile during mile 7 and DIDN'T EVEN FEEL LIKE I WAS RUNNING THAT HARD.  I love it!!

This week I managed an 8.15 mile, 1 hour run as well (7:21 pace average).  It felt awesome and so it's hard to not talk about it (it's my blog, so I get to talk about what I want!!)

I haven't come up with my goals for B2B quite yet. I know that simply seeing some great run splits doesn't mean I'm setting any ground records in the 140.6 distance but I do want to be realistic.

Ironman training isn't all fun and games.  It's definitely hard work.  I put in 22 hours of training last week and will do about 23 this week.  This past Sunday I was sitting by my bike at 4:45am eating my breakfast absolutely dreading the next 6.5 hours of training (5.5 hour ride plus 1 hour run).  I didn't like that feeling.  I think it was mostly because it was so cold out and I didn't feel like riding in it.  After 2.5 hours when the sun came up, the whole ride changed.  It also meant I was almost halfway done with my ride!

Because of that, I've decided that my 6 hour ride this weekend will start after the sun is up.  The good part of this is it will be when I'm starting my ride at the race but the bad part is I will be 3 hours after I would normally start, so I'm going to be using up most of the day to complete it.  Sorry TKB!

I've been fortunate that work hasn't impacted my training that much.  There have been many nights where I come home from work, train for 1 to 2 hours, then log into work from home to finish.  The weekend after next (Oct 12) I have to work all Saturday and then I have a 5K race on October 13.  That weekend is going to be either a complete wash in terms of my long ride/run or I get my long ride/run in after the 5k.  After that weekend I start my taper, so maybe I'll just start it a bit earlier.  Another option (which is what I did for the Branson trip) is do my long run on Thursday and this will allow me to do my long ride on Sunday after the race.

Work is about to get A LOT more interesting as well but fortunately that will happen after Beach2Battleship!  Looking forward to change!

Enough rambling!!  Thanks for reading!!

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