Friday, August 24, 2007

Stage 7: A New Hope?

First great job to to IM UK folks, like Charlie. Those of you at IM KY or IM Canada, like Mike, kick some butt!

Let me state this now: I do have a passion for my job and my career that I knowingly chose. But I am still adjusting to this new busier, stressful lifestyle of mine. It really has left me with a little less brain power at night, so my blog posts are lacking my creativity. Sorry about that folks. But I do want to continue to be held somewhat accountable for my training and will continue to throw up some ramblings here. This disclaimer is being written because a few days ago while I was watching Star Wars: Episode IV, (yes you read that correctly, I was on the trainer) I had some ideas for a Star-Wars-opening-credits-esque post. But it's Friday morning and I haven't come up with enough material.

So anyway, what did I do last week in terms of my training? Well maybe I am back on track and maybe there is still some hope for me.

Monday: No workouts
Tuesday: No workouts
Wednesday: Run 5 miles - 3 miles of hill intervals
Thursday: Bike 42 miles mostly flat with a good wind. Our group still averaged around 20mph for the entire ride.
Friday: 1.5 mile open water swim
Saturday: 13 mile run. Pace for the first 6 miles were too fast. Ran most of the rest about 30 seconds slower at a more comfortable pace.
Sunday: 30 minute easy trainer ride.

Well I've really followed my marathon plan to a T. HA HA. I'm not even sure I've done any of the recommended workouts on any given day. So here's what I am planning on doing from here on out.

I've basically got about 8 weeks or so. First let's pretty much scrap the speed work. Let's focus on volume and more importantly pace. The weekly run volume will come up, and I'll build up to maybe two or three 20 milers or three hour runs soon. I am going to try to get runs in four times a week. I also want to drill the 7:00 minute pace into my legs, my brain, my lungs. I want that the be almost second nature. My run schedule has changed so that I can have some company on my runs. Thus no more TUE/THU runs. Let's try to run MON/WED/SAT and another day.

So I am still hopeful I can have a successful marathon in October, but it's going to take a lot of focus these next few weeks.

And now, the kicker: I can barely manage training for a marathon and I am strenuously considering IM WI 2008. I have been thinking the last week or so that maybe it is possible to do IM without obscene amounts of volume. Am I out of my mind? It's probably not as far-fetched as I think. I've already got a base, right? Anyone want to join me? Or rather, does anyone want to go to Madison to sign me up? Pretty Please?

Weekly Totals:
  • Swim: 1.5 miles
  • Bike: 50 miles
  • Run: 18 miles

Preview of Stage 8: Back on track?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Stage 6: Crazy

Great seeing all the CTC peeps at the GCT this past weekend.

As for me, what a crazy week....

Monday: No workouts
Tuesday: No workouts
Wednesday: 4 miles easy
Thursday: no workouts
Friday: no workouts
Saturday: no workouts
Sunday: 7 mile trail run

Weekly Totals
  • Swim: 0 meters
  • Bike: 0 miles
  • Run: 11 miles

Uh oh...Is the plane to Boston getting grounded??? Running less than 20 miles a week and still running a marathon. That's crazy....

Preview of Stage 7: A new hope?

Monday, August 06, 2007

Stage 5: Take It Easy

First off, one more thing about the Sweet Corn Challenge. Cliff, I also would love to see a profile of this year's ride as well as previous years' rides. Unfortunately I don't have one. But according to Papa Louie, there was just under 5,000 feet of climbing for his ride. So a fair estimate would be to double that for the 100 mile ride and we get about 10,000 feet of elevation gain. For reference, the famous 120 mile Triple Bypass has 10,310 feet of climbing. Hmmm, who would have thought a ride in NE Ohio could have as much climbing as a ride in Colorado.

In Week 5, I once again fell short on my workouts. I feel really bad about missing my run on Sunday, but hopefully it will help me in October. So last week I sent in my registration for this and then my left shin starts complaining. Now I'm worried about full blown shin splints. I am feeling my way through this, trying to balance not going too hard or too long. I think I have the conditioning, but I need to somehow get that running volume up. My current thought is to try to squeeze in as many short 20-30 minute runs as I can throughout the week. My legs need to get used to 26.2 miles of pounding.

Monday: No workouts
Tuesday: No workouts
Wednesday: 3 x 1200 (4:22/4:33/4:43) w/ RI = 400 jog, 1 X 1600 up tempo (7:24) , 6 miles total
Thursday: 40 miles, avg 23+ mph, 30 minute run off the bike
Friday: 3 mile run easy
Saturday 4 mile run easy
Sunday: No workouts

Weekly Totals
  • Swim: 0 meters
  • Bike: 40 miles
  • Run: 16 miles
I do have several things I would like to write about, but quite frankly I don't have the mental energy tonight.

Preview of Stage 6: Life is a box of chocolate...

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Stage 4: Sweet Corn Challenge

One hundred five miles...

Hill after hill...

The sun and the heat...

The humidity...

The rain and the chill after a passing shower...

The flat tire...

Why was I struggling so much?

Maybe it was the endless hills.
Maybe it was from the tubing and camping the day before.
Maybe it was the fatigue from work.
Maybe it was the lack of conditioning.
Maybe it was my poor preparation and attention to nutrition.
Maybe it was my stubbornness to attack every hill.

Yet my faithful companions (IronSis Cas and no-longer-a-century-virgin Marie) and I...

We kept riding.

Maybe it was the constant barrage of f-bombs from my mouth.
Maybe Ironman really has honed my mental toughness.
Maybe I am in better shape than I believe.
Maybe I drew strength from my fellow riders.
Maybe it was the allure of sweet corn and a hearty meal at the end of the ride.

But in the end...

We made it.

I rolled into the parking lot exhausted.
My legs were spent.
My spirit battered, yet somehow unbroken.
That was one of the hardest rides for me...


And looking back now, all the maybes are irrelevant.
It doesn't matter how or when or what.
All that matters is:

"I did it."


Weekly workout:
  • Monday: 1600 meter swim
  • Tuesday: Off
  • Wednesday: 7.5 miles, hill repeats. ~3:30 up and down intervals
  • Thursday: 7.5 mile trail run
  • Friday: Off
  • Saturday: 2 mile run
  • Sunday: 105 mile bike
Weekly Totals:
  • Swim: 1600 meters
  • Bike: 105 miles
  • Run: 17 miles
Preview of Stage 5: Week 4 was a recovery week of sorts. But going forward, the looming question remains: "Where are the runs?"