Hiya, friends! Did you enjoy the weekend? I spent the day spectating the NYC Half and celebrating with teammates—congrats to everyone who ran! Watching folks put their training to the test was a nice way to wrap up a crazy week.
General training notes: What a roller coaster of a training week! Every feeling imaginable—inadequacy, self-doubt, frustration, confidence, happiness—came and went. As you know, my training started on a brutally tough note with Trial By Fire, and luckily, my performance improved as the week progressed.
Monday – Trial By Fire
‘Nuff said. On the bright side, we’ll do this infamously brutal race again in May.
Tuesday – a.m. indoor cycle and strength train
With South Beach quickly approaching, we’ve kicked up the cycling intensity. The course will be fast (*knock on wood*) and will contain a few hills in the form of causeways, so our sets have centered on low cadence/strength building. Oh, and in an effort to get used to riding hot and sweating buckets, I wore a baselayer during this ride. Not sure how much it will help, but it can’t totally hurt, right? As per usual, our strength training left me with jello arms: lots of chest and shoulder drills, plus way too many pushups.
Wednesday – a.m. run and swim
Since Monday’s Trial By Fire essentially prescribed five miles of speedwork, my coach forbade me from running fast and banished me to the five steady mile club. I even tried to strike a deal—“what if I do two of the 1200m repeats?”—but he didn’t relent. Well, technically, he let me hop in and do the final 1200m. The pace was hot (for me—5:15), and I definitely felt fatigue kick in during the third lap. I guess he was right about no speedwork.
As usual, the post-run swim focused on hypoxic breathing sets—and I did 5×150 hypoxic five! It’s all about progress!
Thursday – a.m. long-course swim
Taking a minivan to the ‘burbs for a monster swim? Why the heck not. The “classic” distance swim at SoBe measures 800m, so like on the bike, we’re starting to tackle longer sets in the water. Case in point: 1000m with the final 200 building to race pace. I swam with one of the coaches, and we worked well together; we took turns leading/drafting, and she pushed to find that next gear for the final 200. Total yardage clocked in at 3,500. Pretty solid for this #wannabeswimmer.
Friday – a.m. brick (cycle and run)
Finally, finally, I think my run is starting to click. I don’t remember the last time I’ve felt this good running; smooth, strong, efficient, and above all, turning over my legs and keeping a solid cadence. The workout started with a 45-minute warm-up, and then we chipped away at a ladder: five minutes steady on the bike, 400m steady on the track; five minutes steady, 400m steady; five minutes solid, 800m solid, which we repeated twice. Then we repeated the two 400m sets. Coming off the bike, I simply felt great. I’m getting the sense I may be a stronger runner coming off the bike as opposed to running “straight up.” Anyway, nailing this workout instilled a sense of confidence I’ve lacked this week. When I hit a rough patch, I know I can turn off my brain, put my head down, and get it done, which I wasn’t able to do during Trial By Fire. Again, it’s all about personal progress, and my mental game improved.
Saturday – a.m. bike
Not going to lie, taking my tri bike out for its maiden voyage has been hanging over my head. Yes, my cycling abilities and confidence have improved since last year, but it’s still nerve-wrecking to ride a new bike—and riding in a new position. Even though there are a several things related to SoBe that make me anxious, riding my Slice tops toped the list.
I planned to meet two teammates at Central Park who totally went above and beyond. Not only did we meet at an ungodly early hour (I had to be at work by 8 a.m.), but it would also be a slow, touch-and-go outing for me.
Anyway, I woke up before my alarm—think Christmas Day: ‘I get to ride my bike!’—and gave myself plenty of time to get to the park. Immediately, I couldn’t believe my bike’s lightness; I almost expected the wind to blow me over! Once I made it uptown, the guys offered me a few tips, and we got down to business.
So what I thought would happen: having zero control, feeling unstable, and wiping out. What actually happened: being a little twitchy, feeling confident and … natural? I basically spun out for two loops (12 miles) and tried to get used to shifting, which will be a work in progress.
At the very least, I know I can ride my bike somewhat confidently.
Sunday – a.m. CompuTrainer class at Tailwind Endurance
I cut this morning’s ride short—from two to 1.5 hours—so I’d be able to see my teammates run during the race. After an hour warm-up, I rode part of the Escape From Alcatraz course. Holy hills. That is all.
Who raced this weekend? And how did it go?