Sunday, October 5, 2014

Half Ironman Training: Final Push

All these vacation posts may have one thinking, "She must have falling off the wagon on that half ironman training!" Not entirely true. However, I will say that week-long trip away did give me a little break from the constant circus of running from the pool, to the pedals, to the road! It was heavenly.

It has also been extremely difficult for me to get back on my bike since we've returned. Those 3-4 hour rides are so mentally difficult for me. Dealing with traffic, stop lights, sharp turns, worry of having to change a all gets me quite worked up. Plus, 4 hours on that tiny, torturous seat becomes barbaric.

I am currently in my final push before the taper. Race day is October 19. I can almost say "I made it!" Which is a pretty cool feeling.

Because I'm working this weekend, my training is a little screwy. I had Wed and Thurs off this week, so should have gotten a 50 mile ride in. But I just didn't have it in me. So here is a sample of my workouts for this final push.

Monday: Masters Swim (sprints) + 30 minute weight training session
Tuesday: Didn't have it in me to get up at 4:30, so had to do my brick workout at 7pm after work. Which was challenging. 1 hour spin class, 4 mile run (in the dark)
Wednesday: Masters swim. 1.7 miles - and our coach had us do the timed mile. Which I finished 1 mile in 30:30 (PR!)! (and that's after going 0.7 miles of warm ups and drills). Followed by a 6 mile run.
Thursday: Supposed to be my 50 mile bike ride. But instead I took advantage of the weather and did a 10 mile hike at a brisk pace. I'm sure it helped in my training?!
Friday: Masters swim - sprint day. (Another PR! My fasted 100m yet - 1:34. Some swimmers probably giggle at time, but I was happy.)
Saturday: 7 mile run (was supposed to do 12...but just didn't have it in me to wake at 4:15 and do it before work).
Sunday: Rest Day.
Monday: Brick day. Masters Swim. 50 mile bike ride. Alone. Gulp. (This is my day off. There's no way I'm doing this before work. That would be insane.)
Tuesday: 12 mile run.

And then the gradual taper begins!

I have found in this training that I really love swimming. Swimming is a sport where the more you do it, the better you get. Fact. There is so much technique and growth one can find in the swim. I originally joined the Masters Swim team with intent to quit after the tri. But I have decided that I'm in it for good (and I got authorization from my CFO. AKA Husband. Yippee!).

Biking is my least favorite sport of the 3. But it's still fun. The wind in your hair, the speed you can get going downhill, the triumph reaching the peak of a hill. But I also feel a great deal of fear and discomfort on the bike. My butt hurts, my thighs chafe, and sometimes I fall over.

And I always feel "home" when my feet hit the ground on the run.

What do I fear most about this race? The heat. That 13.1 mile run will be in Phoenix, AZ around 11am in the morning. It's going to be hot (like 90 degrees F). But with water stations and salt tablets, I will get through it. #littleenginethatcould

When I finish the race - I look forward to lifting weights, hiking, trail running, and just doing what I want to do. It will be a transition. Right now my sense of "Normalcy" is squeezing in 2 hours of exercise/day. So I will need to train my brain to remember, "Hey, Abby, you don't have to do cardio for 3 hours/day anymore! You're not going to turn into a toad."

Next time I talk about this training on my blog, I will most likely be doing a race-recap! Which is a scary and exciting feeling.....


Marlys said...

I truly don't know how you train like this and work full time! I will be happy when this race is finished and I do pray that the weather will be super cool for the race! That kind of heat is not good for doing a half-iron race or marathon so my prayers will be with you! I am so happy that you like swimming as I truly believe it is easier on the body than running for miles!

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

It will be good to have this accomplishment behind you and to do whatever you feel like doing! I thought marathon training was hard but this is a whole other beast! My friend John who has done several IM also liked biking the least. I don't think I'd like having to do those super long training rides. I love biking, but only on biking trails without traffic, and I don't think I could handle clip-in pedals as I'd probably fall all the time!

All that said I know you are going to do great!!!