Never Say Never Again. As this training recap will show, the saying is right! I enjoyed doing the Acworth Women’s Sprint Triathlon last year but this year my focus was on getting ready for Ragnar Napa and then the Dopey Challenge. Just on Wednesday night, I was telling a friend how I would NOT do a triathlon this year because I didn’t have time to train for it. And on Thursday, I was offered an entry and I had signed up! So while my training in the beginning of this week was geared towards my Diva Half Marathon goal, the last few days of the week took a different turn.
Started off the week with a run, my favorite way to start the week! 4 miles in humidity and my first time running from home in a long long time. I usually drive to run at the flat, shaded river trails. But it is next to impossible in the sweltering summer to run and then head to work directly from the run. A shower and washing hair is an absolute must that can’t be delayed (I sometimes run and use shower wipes to change in. When I get to work, I sneak back into the shower discreetly.) Also, running from home will get me used to hills again. I also went in for “CrossFit Total”, to find the maximum one-rep weight in back squat, shoulder press and deadlift. I could not have been more proud of my effort – I back squatted the same weight that I deadlifted 4 months ago (You can go higher on weights in deadlift).
Unscheduled rest day. I wish I had gone out to CF, but I had a late night and my body was screaming to sleep.
No matter how slow I go, intervals will be one of my favorite workouts! Its long enough to get me in the zone, but short enough to look forward to being done with. The workout I did was 4 x (400m @ 5k pace, 1min rest, 200m @ 1 mile pace) 3min rest. And my major accomplishment was not puking after the 4th 400m. This workout also brought up a question that has always bothered me –
My 5k pace from a race 3months ago is 11:00. Even my PR 18+ months ago was only 10:28 pace. My mile pace is been 9:55 from 2 weeks ago. Today, I did all 4 sets of 400m between 9:45-9:20 and 200m between 9:05 – 8:30 – way faster than the targeted paces.
Since I missed another part of the Crossfit Total yesterday (Bench Press, Power Clean, 1 mile run), I went in to do the total. It was one of those days which instinctively felt off and I had my first DNF at cross fit. I just didn’t have energy after bench press and I couldn’t even clean what I did last week. I debated pushing through, but took the easy way out by giving body some rest.
Smart or wimp?
This is where my training took a curveball from my lack of focus. I had just declared on Wednesday night at dinner that I was going to be focusing on running for Ragnar Napa and the Dopey Challenge and there would be no triathlons this year for me. The plan was to use swimming and biking as cross training along with CrossFit. All of a sudden, I found myself with a chance to race a Sprint Triathlon next weekend. And I kept thinking 500m swim – it is short enough for me to do that; 16mile bike – hmm … not what I’d want to do with a hilly course, but I’ve been riding and I suppose I *could* take it easy and ride; 3.1 mile run – not a problem even with hills. And I signed up for the Allatoona Sprint Triathlon.
Since the triathlon is next weekend (June 29th) and I had done no open water swims, I cancelled my run/crossfit plans and went swimming. It was a super short swim meant for me to feel a little comfortable in the water. And I was rewarded with some gorgeously peaceful views!
It was a fun long run with the group. When I say ‘with the group’, I mean ‘trying to keep the group in sight while they very graciously go 1min-1:30 slower than their regular pace’. I tried Generation UCan along with a breakfast of protein smoothie (banana, almonds, protein powder) and found that I didn’t need anything else. In fact, I meant to take something about 1-1.5 hrs in and completely forgot. I finished strong and gave a good effort on the final hills.
Since training plans flip-flopped to a triathlon next weekend with a reputedly hilly bike course, I asked my Dopey buddy if he’d ride with me in a hilly course. He agreed to, with the caveat that we do 31 miles instead of the 15miles I had thought of (the routes are loops and so easier to do 15, 31, 66, … than to do 15 miles and go out for a few more). In my runner’s high from Saturday’s run, I agreed. How much bad could 7 more miles be, right? Well … it could be VERY bad if they were hilly 7 extra miles! I had a first 31 mile ride (longest yet), first hilly ride and first fall. Yes, I fell going at 0mph on a hill. But it was a gorgeous day and even though I was very tired, I felt accomplished!
Talk about curveballs and losing focus! My no triathlons in 2014 became a sprint triathlon in less than 10 days. No hard rides became a 31 mile slow hilly ride with a determination to conquer it. And all of a sudden, my smile is wider and I’m excited! Excited about a race that I wasn’t planning on doing and that I haven’t trained properly for? Yes, I am! Maybe my lack of focus is what keeps me going at times.
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