So here I am again after yet another unforeseen absence. Life has thrown a pretty big curve ball my way recently, but I am not comfortable going into details here [yet] so please bear with me being so cryptic. Let’s just say that things are and will continue to be quite different and difficult. I have an endurance race ahead of me that doesn’t have a finish line or a medal – only “aid stations”, as a dear friend pointed out, in the form of support from our family and friends. Hopefully there will come a time when I can open up in such a public way, but that time is not now and I thank you if you choose to support me and continue reading nonetheless. Another great friend suggested that I might find writing therapeutic, regardless of the topic, so I am attempting to dust off the ol’ blog.
Of course I also have the journey to Ironman Lake Placid ahead of me, for which training began officially on the
1st 2nd of the year. As I’ve mentioned, I am now working with a coach, which simultaneously takes some pressure off and puts more on. I felt a noticeable weight lift off my shoulders in that I no longer have to make decisions or come up with a plan week by week; I simply have to do as I’m told. At the same time there is pressure in knowing that I have someone to report to; every single interval split, stroke count and average heart rate counts for something and it’s not as easy to say “ehhhh I’m not going to do this today.” I suppose that’s what this coaching thing is all about!
Along the way I have decided not to post detailed weekly training summaries as I have for my last few cycles. It’s not that I am trying to keep anything a “secret” (I’m still posting everything on DailyMile), but I found that it was also adding unnecessary pressure – wondering what I was going to say about each workout, worrying what people might think of the stats and trying to remember to take a picture of everything I do. It often felt like a scramble to publish those posts early in the week (and I realize this is only imaginary pressure that I was putting on myself), which – to be honest – not a lot of people were reading anyway.
A few notes on what I’ve been up to:
- I have switched over to time and heart rate based training as opposed to the distance/pace approach that I have used for so many years. It is certainly an adjustment, and a daily struggle to trust the process (and my coach).
- I am so thankful for the Saturday morning group I joined for long trainer rides. We are instructed by a pro triathlete, the 2 hours fly by, there’s great company and it makes hate the trainer much less. This is the only way I will survive this winter!
- I am still suffering through a lot of my runs as I endeavour to get back in shape. Man oh man, did I ever let it slide! (Remind me not to do that again.) Thankfully I am often lucky enough to have a handful of enthusiastic friends ready and willing to join me and make it a whole lot more bearable – such as the 3 awesome ladies who trudged through hill repeats with me this morning at 5am.
- Here is a rough breakdown of how my weeks are shaking out in this initial base-building month of training:
Monday – bike and swim
Tuesday – strength and run
Wednesday – bike and swim
Thursday – strength and run
Friday – rest
Saturday – long bike and short transition run
Sunday – long run
- Friday rest days are also an adjustment since I have typically taken Mondays off after the big weekend workouts. Having four solid days of workouts ahead of me after the long sessions on Saturday and Sunday is grueling – mentally as much as physically. That’s what I signed up for!
With respect to the above alluded-to “curve ball”, it will almost definitely impact my training but to what extent, I am just not sure. The goal right now is not to look too far ahead. I’m taking things one day, one step at a time for now. Training, for the most part, keeps me happy, healthy and grounded – a combination which can only be positive.
Now, bring on my rest day.