12 days and counting.
Swim – 2:30:00 (p) – 2:10:00 (a) – 5950m
Bike – 5:45:00 (p) – 4:24:23 (a) – 120.08km
Run – 3:00:00 (p) – 2:45:01 (a) – 33.11km
Race – 1:10:00 (p) – 1:13:34 (a) – 25.75km
Total – 11:15 (p) – 10:32:58 (a)
This week was my highest training volume, probably not the best week to schedule a sprint distance triathlon, but hey, who doesn’t like to race?
I really suck at changing my training schedule to fit in a unscheduled event. I get stuck on “things have to go where they have to go” so this week threw a wrench into my plans. No worries though, I was able to get in the bulk of my training sessions, the prescribed intervals, and still have a great race.
Again, don’t fret, the race report is on the way.
Taking down a 1:15 Negative Split and both 1:20 and 1:30 with Fartlek Intervals (5x3min) after my Friday morning swims has given me a lot of confidence. This is one place in my training that I lack, confidence on the run. Am I ready for a Ironman 70.3? Sure. Am I ready to push hard at an Ironman 70.3? Not even close.
I can hang with the power bikers; you know the guys, all quads and calves. Put my next to a runner and I don’t stand a chance. Well I think some of that is changing as I came away with the second fastest run on the day yesterday.
With less than 2 weeks now until Escape From Alcatraz, my first race is under my belt, I am feeling pretty relaxed.
The only concern I have is water temperature. I like to get in the water, warm up (literally and figuratively), the get prepared to do battle. In Alcatraz, no such thing as a warm up. It is just off the boat and swim like you stole something.
So this week I am going to grab my wetsuit, head down to the river, and go for a swim. The water temperature may be colder than the bay but I reckon it can’t hurt.
Think of it as a swimming treadmill.
Question: Have you tried swimming in a river? Any thoughts.
I throw my hands in the air in surrender.
Swim – 0:00:00 – 0km
Bike – 1:01:20 – 36.8km
Run – 1:02:35 – 12.5km
Total – 2:03:55
Travelling for business is starting to really suck. I spent 5 days on a drilling rig in the middle of nowhere this week. Pretty sure you could tell something was up by the training volume, hey? I don’t like spending time away from my family; partly because when I get home my daughter has taken my spot in the bed, the furniture is never in the same spot as when I left, and the dog has gone pretty much bonkers. More than all of that, I miss the girls.
Being woken up in the morning with a body slam on Saturday or eating breakfast on the couch watching cartoons is all I want to do these days. Being a grown up isn’t all it’s advertised.
I was able to get back to training Friday evening on my bike, opting to take it somewhat easy as I was planning to head outside for the first time on Sunday afternoon. Yeah, the weekend in Calgary was that warm. Alas it was not in destiny and I opted to hang with the girls instead.
I have always joked around with my fellow swim club members that a swim lane is like a peloton; everyone needs to take their turn at the front. This morning I took my turn at the front, and like a rider who made a failed attempt at a break away, I was slowly caught and spit out the back with nothing but regret to keep me company.
When Michael Gustafson tweeted “taking a day off from the pool, you might as well retire” I didn’t really believe it. Well, now I do.
I missed the St Patrick’s Day 10k road race this past Sunday, and judging by the number of race recaps on WordPress, I am the only one in North America who did. Everyone has that race, the one you always want to run, but something short of a miracle will keep you from lining up at the start line. This seems to be mine.
Not that I really want to run a 10k race these days. It seems silly to me to pay a race entry fee, typically $30-$50, drive half away across town, line up with a bunch of runners (sorry runners, I prefer triathletes), and drive home all sweaty when I could hammer a quick 10k from the house and be done is less than an hour.
Question: Have you taken a significant time away from training? Did you see a drop in fitness?
As a triathlete you know what “two-a-days” are.
Swim – 3:00:00 – 9600m
Bike – 2:28:47 – 86.7km
Run – 1:30:24 – 18.0km
Strength – 0:45:00
Total – 7:44:11
Not only do you know what they are, but you live and breathe them in the winter season. Well, at least I have since November. The only problem I have with training in the morning and again at lunch is the time; it takes a lot out of my day. A 45 minute run at lunch, or “runch” as we call it, can take almost double that time to walk to the gym, change, run, shower, change, and walk back to the office. Not the most efficient use of time.
To increase my efficiency, I have opted for a mini-brick after my swim sessions on Monday/Friday, hitting the treadmill right after I get out of the pool. Sure after a session of sprints it can be tough but I chalk it up to training my body to run on tired legs. I still split my workouts on Wednesday so I can get a long run in on fresh legs. Once I get in the thick of things in spring, I will drop my swim on Wednesday and push the run even longer.
Speaking of the treadmill, I have been reserved to running indoors over the past week as the temperature in Calgary has been a balmy -25 degrees Celsius (-40 degrees with the wind). Now I am no wimp, but when the wind picks up and I can freeze my skin in less time than I spend in T1, time to hit the treadmill.
I cut my run short on Monday because my left shin was starting to hurt about 12 minutes in. I cursed the treadmill, walked it loose, and headed for the showers. Why does it hurt indoors but no issue outside? I always set the treadmill on an incline (1-1.5 percent) to keep the noise to a minimum. Not that I am loud when I run, quite the opposite, but with repeated beatings the treadmills at the local YMCA have seen better days. If I leave it a 0 the screws and bolts sound like they are gonna bail at any moment.
So the same thing started to happen on Friday, pain in my left shin. As an experiment, I lowered the incline to 0.5 percent and after a couple of minutes, wouldn’t you know it, the pain went away and I enjoyed a decent 35 minute run.
It my my daughters birthday on Wednesday. That kid is getting old, fast, and I don’t like it.
To make the day special I am going to play hookie from swim club on cook her favourite breakfast, pannekoek. Dutch pancakes are the house favourite and when asked the question “what do you want for breakfast?” her answer is always pancakes. I am going to try and wake up early, sneak downstairs, and have everything ready for her when she wakes up. Seeing as I am as graceful as a bull in a china shop, I am gonna need all the luck I can get.
Wish me luck.
Question: Have you started introducing ‘bricks’ into your training yet?
Oh, I wish that I was a professional triathlete.
Swim – 2:00:00 – 6300m
Bike – 0:00:00 – 0km
Run – 0:30:07 – 5.63km
Strength – 1:30:00
Total – 4:00:07
I have a pretty delicate balance when it comes to fitting training into my daily life. One missed day can really mess a guy up. Take this week for example; day trip to Edmonton Tuesday killed my bike and run, and leaving Friday for a drilling rig killed the rest of the week and the beginning of this week. Not to mention I spent my birthday away from the girls. Boo.
Looking on the positive side, the workouts I did get in the week were awesome; I don’t think that I have swam that hard for a long time. Our workouts on Monday and Wednesday both featured my favourite training tool, fins. Here is our set from Monday.
400m Swim / 200m Kick / 400m Drill
4x100m Swim on 1:45
2x200m Swim on 3:30
4x100m Swim on 2:00
1x400m Swim on 7:00
4x100m Swim on 2:00
2x200m Swim on 3:45
100m Swim – Easy
Needless to say I pretty much ate everything I saw for the next 2 days. Our coach, while we resting between the last 2x200m set told us to focus on a hard kick with a good long reach off the wall. The sentiment from the lane, “we are just trying to stay alive.” Enough said.
I squeezed in a run on the treadmill Wednesday night, making up for Tuesday. Intervals were on the menu as my time was limited due to a late bed time for the little one. No matter, the less time I spend there the better.
The sidewalks, pathways, and roads here in Calgary have turned into pure ice. Not the “oops it is a little slippery” kinda ice, I mean the “holy crap I just surfed for 10 feet” kinda ice. I guess this is what we get for having above zero temperatures in January. I chose the treadmill on Wednesday purely for that reason; I didn’t want to go for a ride.
Running in the winter can be treacherous, especially here in Canada. Cold weather, wind, and dark can make for some scary situations. I have compiled a list of do’s and don’ts for winter running in Canada. Stay tuned for that piece of wisdom…..
I mentioned that I spent the last 4 days in the field, missing not only my birthday, but spending a lot of time away from the girls. Not something that I want to do on a regular basis, but sometimes it comes with the territory. By territory I mean running my own product line with an international company. Not to make myself sound important or anything.
Being away from the normal day-to-day can be refreshing at times, heading into the middle of nowhere in -20 degree weather is not one of those times. I am glad to be back home safe and sound and ready to spend some quality time with my daughter. Strengthening our connection is going to be my top priority over the next 30 days.
So back to normal for the next couple of weeks. As normal as my family is.
Question: Any tips from you on running in the winter?
Race week. My favorite kind of week.
Swim – 1:13:37 – 3440m
Bike – 2:18:53 – 65.15km
Run – 1:26:42 – 17.81km
Race – 2:23:23 – 51.5km
Total – 7:22:34
I have been kicking around the idea of a weekly recap for a while now. Like I mentioned a couple of posts ago, I am not sure if my life is interesting enough to fill an entire post each week, but I reckon it is worth a go.
My triathlon season came to a close this past weekend with a great race for both me and my daughter in Lake Chaparral. I didn’t hit my goal of sub 2:15:00, but with the slight issue I had on the run, I am happy with my result. I may have gone too hard on the bike, or I may have slacked a bit on my run training the month previous. Vacation can do that to you. I still improved on my time from last year by a full 8 minutes and placed in the top 10.
Monday was a holiday, so I used the day off to head for a long bike ride. To sum it up in one word, wind. It was a slow ride out at 25km/hr, but with the wind at my back coming home, it was much better. I averaged 55km/hr peaking at 62km/hr heading into Calgary. Had a great time. Run Tuesday with 3x3min Fartlek intervals. I had a hard time jogging between the intervals and ended up walking between 2 and 3 for about 2 minutes. This was my first indication that my run fitness may not be as good as I had planned. No matter, I finished the run strong and chalked it up to a rough day.
Began my taper on Thursday with a short run to loosen up my legs and started to get ready mentally for my upcoming race.
Race weekend started on Saturday with the Kids of Steel for my daughter. We had a great time even though she didn’t rush too much. Hey, if it isn’t fun for a 6 year old, why even do it. Right? After her race, I slung the wetsuit on for a quick swim around the course to get my sighting targets and take my equipment for a test run. All good. Race went decent on Sunday morning, even though some kids (I assumed kids) knocked over the portable toilets and smelled up transition. Placed 8th overall with a decent swim and great bike. Mentioned my run fitness, yeah, I struggled there.
So that is the end of my 2013 Triathlon race season. I had a good year racing, with decent performances in all of my races. I still have a bunch of run races scheduled for the remainder of the year, including my attempt at a 10k PR in early September. We are heading out for a well deserved vacation in the coming weeks and this time I am going to leave the bike and shoes at home. I think I earned the upcoming days off.
I have read a lot about the Whole 30 program over the past 6 months. It makes a ton of sense, but while I was training hard, I shied away from it as I was concerned about the restrictiveness of the program. I have hit the non optimal foods pretty hard over the past months as mainly my will power has lacked along with my planning. I think it is about time to hit the ‘reset’ button and give the Whole 30 a rip, so starting September 1, I am in.
I will create a separate page dedicated to my challenge, charting my progress and some of my meals along the way. You all helped me complete the 21 Day No Sugar Detox, so I am calling on you again to help me this time around.
Top Posts for the Week
Hotels, Family, and Training
Calvin and Hobbes
Seems to be a pattern over the past 3-4 months. Ironman must be in full swing as that post has been top spot for a long time now. Congratulations if you became and ‘Ironman’ over the past year; I can’t imagine doing it myself right now. Possibly in the future.