97 days: In the double digits

I have a plan to raise $10,000 for some awesome organizations by Sept. 22, 2013 – the day I run in Ironman Lake Tahoe. Under 15 weeks away! Raised so far: $5,997! Want to increase this total? Chip in a few bucks to one of our causes here, or participate in one of our upcoming fundraising events.

Suzanne and Tawnya are on the march! Follow along as they trek the Camino de Santiago de Compostela, “The Way of St James” – a 500 mile pilgrimage starting in southern France and across northern Spain. Can you believe it’s been five weeks since they departed for their journey and they have less than one week of walking left!? They have posted several interesting updates to their blog – fascinating reading!

In honor of reaching the 100 days to go milestone last Friday, I kicked off a new fundraising challenge! Every day for the last 100 days before Ironman Lake Tahoe, I’ll be picking out a motivational winner that earns $5 to the TFAC cause of their choice. How do you win? Go find out the details here.

In the Double Digits

The number of remaining training days are now down into the double digits. Realizing this has sent me into a panic! Am I going to be ready? Am I going to be strong enough? Fast enough? Can I stay injury free?

Well, the answer to the last question is troubling… I made the mistake of posting the following sentence in last Monday’s blog post: “I’m logging good miles, increasing my volume at a healthy pace, maintaining good speed, and have avoided injury.”

Focus on the bold underlined part in that sentence for a second. Dammit! That was the kiss of death! The very next day I went out on what was planned to be an “easy 6-mile run” according to my training plan. It turned into a beautiful, relaxed, ridiculously effortless 6-mile run at a 6:14/mile pace. I wasn’t even trying to push the pace; it just happened. It was easily the best run of this training cycle.

Until I was done, and a calf muscle tightened up.

Yes. I had cursed myself by my brazen blog post the day before. After several swear words directed at myself, the application of some Mission Athletecare Max Muscle Rehab Gel (with a couple of gel migration issues to areas that we shan’t discuss here… it burnses Master Frodo!), and some compression/massage/ice therapy, I felt pretty good. Until I full on tweaked that calf muscle two days later, 2.5 miles away from home. I had to dial back the pace to about 7:20/mile just so I could make it home without further injury.

And now we let it heal. I can swim. I can bike (as long as I don’t go too crazy on the hills). And with Ragnar NW Passage only a month away, I am being super cautious… there will be no running until I am 99.3% confident the calf can handle it… And, you never know, maybe this could be a mixed blessing. This will give me more time to focus on the swim and to log extra workouts in the pool – this is by far my weakest triathlon leg. Plus, I’ve also been known to return from a brief rest from running with fast legs… so this might be a good thing.

With less than 100 days to go, every day counts. So I’m going to work with this little blip and make the best out of it.

Monday Training Check-In

So, considering this minor setback, how did the training week go? Remember, I’m doing weekly updates of my training progress to stay honest with the “Commit” part of my TFAC process.

  • Monday:
    Plan – Rest
    Actual – Rest
  • Tuesday:
    Plan – Easy 6mi run
    Actual – Run 6 miles @ 6:13/mile.
    The run itself felt fantastic. The calf issue afterward wasn’t so great.
  • Wednseday:
    Plan – Swim 1600m with 8x50m and 8x25m intervals; Bike 45min with 8x1min hill repeat intervals.
    Actual – Swim 1600m with 8x50m and 8x25m intervals; Bike 16.3miles with 8x1min hill repeats.
    The swim felt really pretty good. The bike hill repeats were brutal – they weren’t long, but I pushed them quite hard. Ouch.
  • Thursday:
    Plan – 45min tempo run
    Actual – 5 mile run, including 2.5 miles jogging home after the calf tweak. Average pace 7:19/mile.
    Yep, this is the run where the tweak went from mild to ‘stop the train!’ Now we reconfigure and recover.
  • Friday:
    Plan – Swim 1600m with 4x200m intervals; Bike 45min easy
    Actual – Swim 1600m with 4x200m intervals; Bike 37min easy.
    The swim was vicious. Longer interval sets are brutal in the pool… I hate 200m intervals more than anything. I went straight from the pool to LAX to pick up our buddy Steph to hang with us for the weekend (we had a ton o’ fun!) and while she and Lauren hung out, I went out for a quick spin.
  • Saturday:
    Plan – Swim 1800m; Run 10 miles
    Actual – Bike 45 miles (the workout planned for Sunday)
    As the leg wasn’t ready to run, I swapped the weekend workouts around to give the leg an extra day. The ride was great!
  • Sunday:
    Plan – Bike 45 miles
    Actual – Rest
    As the leg hadn’t healed, and I didn’t get up early enough to hit the pool before our brunch reservation, I called an audible and pushed the swim workout planned for Saturday to Monday. Don’t worry… I got it done today.

So, this week started off wonderfully! A few small adjustments have been required in order to help the leg heal, but it was still a solid week. 85.3 miles in the water and on the roads. 6,572 calories burned. I can’t complain…

I think I’ll be able to get in some running miles again this week, and will be ready to blast Ragnar next month. Optimism reigns supreme!

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