Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Balancing Triathlon and Life and Weekly Training Update

A lot of posts from a variety of triathletes have been dedicated to maintaining a proper balance between triathlon training/racing and the rest of your life.  Especially for those new to the sport(such as myself) this can be a difficult thing.

You easily become paranoid when a workout does not go as planned.  You fear that every missed or bad workout will cause you to lose every ounce of fitness that you have worked so hard to earn over the last days, weeks, months, etc.  I personally was a victim to this especially early in my triathlon transition.  I feel that I have already been able to grow so much, and I am still in my first season of triathlon.

I still have so far to go.

However, I feel that this past week was again another step towards maturity for me with the balance of this awesome sport and the rest of my life.

This past weekend, my college roommate of 5 years decided to go and throw his life away though the sacrament of marriage(I am totally kidding).  Just look how happy he is, and his wife is amazing as well.  That being said, with his wedding and the 4th of July, this week of training was already going to be hectic.  As it turned out, this week turned out to be full of surprises both good and bad which made for a very interesting week.

Here is the breakdown:

Monday- This is actually a day that seemed to go exactly as planned.  I have been able to get into a good routine of doing a Master's Swim technique session in the morning on Mondays and an open water swim in the night.  Both seemed to go as planned and the technique sessions have seemed to have helped me to significantly speed up my times in recent weeks.

Tuesday-  Another day that went as planned.  I wanted to get a good bike ride in the morning because my buddy Ryan was coming into town that night and we were planning on doing another ride Wednesday morning and I wanted to see how hard I could push on tired legs.  The second session of the day was an endurance swim consisting of longer sets totaling 4000 yards.

I know your pain...
Wednesday-  I was so excited to take Ryan out for a nice flat ride that I have done a dozen times over the last month and really utilize him to push myself and gauge my fitness.  The ride started off as planned and we were pushing a nice pace.  Two miles into the ride.  FLAT!  "Well this sucks," I thought, "but Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome."  We fixed the flat and after a few minutes we were up and riding again.  Two miles down the road.  FLAT NUMBER 2!!!  Didn't have another tube.  Called for a ride and told Ryan that he could go on.  Being the great friend that he is, he said that he would stick around and ride later.  As it turned out, about 5 minutes later, it started to storm terribly.

Now that the bike for the day was ruined, I went home, ate, and slept.  About an hour later, I decided that I would go for a run.  I don't know if it was because I was upset over the flat or the easy bike loosened up my legs for the day, but I had my best run of my life.

10 miles in 57:52 (for a pace of 5:48 per mile).

Ryan and I did a recovery swim in the afternoon which I think I barely did a mile.  Legs did feel a bit better afterwards.

Thursday- Seeing that I had run 10 miles the day before hard, I had no expectations about today's race.  I was very happy with my time and place, and you can read about the race and the afternoon swim in the previous blog post.

Friday- Had to travel to Dubuque, Iowa for the wedding rehearsal.  Woke up and did 9 miles because my bike was in the shop getting repaired.

9 miles- 54:38(6:05 per mile)

The rest of Friday consisted of delicious catered food, lots of good beer, and many reunions with close friends.  It was a great start to the weekend.

Saturday- First full rest day that I had taken in a long time.  Contemplated getting up and trying to run or swim, but instead opted to to go buy eggs, ham, and cheese and make omelets for the rest of the wedding party.

The wedding and reception were unbelievable.  I have never seen either of them so happy, and we had such a great time on the party bus.  I won't go too into detail to spare boredom, but it was overall one of the best weekends of my life.

Sunday- Woke up bright and early to get to Rockford, Illinois to recruit.  This was a rough drive, and I definitely needed some sleep after.  I went and picked up my bike from the store and knew that despite how tired I was that I needed to get in my last hard BRICK two weekends out from Ironman Racine 70.3.

I think Eric and EndureIt may have put NAS on the back of my bike(he replaced the tire), because I have never ridden better in my life.  Granted there were some favorable winds for a large part of the ride, but I was able to complete:

55.04 miles in 2:34:37(Average of 21.4 MPH)

What I felt like after the ride
After the bike, I ran into my house and quickly changed into my running clothes.  My nutrition on the bike has been going really well recently, but I was hungry before this transition run and a bit dehydrated.  So being the genius that I am, I decided to go against all the training that I had done so far and eat a quick yogurt and chug some carbonated water.  BIG MISTAKE.  Going out I had planned on running 4 miles and trying to push my legs a bit.  I'll let you judge how it went.

Mile 1- 6:01
Mile 2- 6:05
Mile 3- 6:15
Mile 4- 6:25

What I felt like after the run...
About mile 2.5, I got the worst side stitch of my life.  If I had to run another 9 miles that day, I might have died.  I could not have been happier to reach my driveway.  It was a brutal way to end an overall great workout.

However, it was awesome to go at this pace for the day.  Really felt good to see what the hard work has enabled me to do over the past few months in all three disciplines.  I am excited to use the next two weeks to rest up and prepare for my second 70.3.

I am hoping to drop significant time, but we will have to see...

Thanks for following and keep on keeping on.

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