Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Chicago Triathlon Training: Week Four (marathon week 6)

Sorry this is coming to you a bit late...seems like training and work actually have me, like, busy!

To catch you up...if you haven't already, should should probably read my post from Friday about how I felt about last week's training, and my decision to not run for a bit. Basically, I didn't try my hardest last week and I was in a bit of a funk until Thursday.

After adjusting to Hannah going home, I feel like I really slacked. But the good news is that, for my marathon training at least, it was a pull-back I just took that to my triathlon training as well.

Alright, here's the damage this week:

Monday - rest 6 miles
Since I'd already had two rest days in a row, I ellipticalled six miles on Monday  to make up for missing my mileage on Saturday. My leg was not happy afterwards. Neither was I, and on Tuesday I made the decision to stop running for a while.

Tuesday - 3 miles
I was pretty tired on Tuesday and I ended up not doing anything. I was totally riding the slacker train and did not want to get off.

Wednesday - 3 miles weights
Believe it or not, I actually missed getting up at the crack of dawn to go lift, so I made it happen on Wednesday and it felt ahhhmazing (apart from, you know, having to get out of bed at 4:15). Here's what my numbers looked like:

Thursday - 5 miles 1 mile OWS
The only thing I really dislike about Thursday OWS is that it starts at 6. That's so late to me! But oh well, I guess. I got there around 6:15, suited up, and swam my two laps of the course for a distance of 1 mile:
 My average moving pace was 2:09min/100 yards which is pretty solid. I'm really happy with that for this distance.

Preview: I will miss out on OWS this Thursday (the 7th) because it's Cam's birthday. I'm really nervous about this decision because...I have a race this weekend! There's still so much to do...I have to figure out packet pick up and bike drop off and all of that stuff...eek! I'll have to bike up to 20% of the course with cars and stuff...ahhh. Shit's getting real! But at least you'll have a race recap to look forward to!

Friday - 70 min/17 mile bike
I had 70 minutes in the saddle on my schedule for Friday and I didn't really want to do them. I couldn't decide where I wanted to ride, I needed a new bike pump...and I just didn't want to put in the effort. But I stopped and got a pump, then settled on a trail about 15 minutes from work. The only saving grace was that it wasn't balls hot out - it was 75ish with a cool breeze, which I could deal with. It was a loop trail that I knew had some rolling hills (Cam's ridden it before), and when I looked at it online it said it was just about 10 miles. Since rolling hills are a thing I need to work on I figured it would work out perfectly.

I was kind of tired from work, and I ended up being pretty disappointed with my average speed for this ride, but there was a pretty decent headwind for at least half of the trail...and it was the hilly half. Also impacting my speed was the fact that there were about 7 road crossings that I had to dismount at, and I had a significant wait time at a few of them. There's a way to set my Garmin to pause if I'm still for more than 5 seconds or something...I'll probably have to activate that feature soon...

That said...I did meet my mileage goal! Before I started I asked myself how many miles I wanted to cover (17) and didn't stop until I'd bagged each one, only going three minutes over my 70 minute time frame. Here are the stats:
Like I said, nothing to really write home about. But I did get some practice with hills and gear shifting.

Saturday - 12 miles long bike/35 miles
This was a long ride. I wanted to replace my 12 mile training run with a long bike know, rather than doing nothing. I knew a 12 mile run would take me a little less than two and a half hours, so I wanted to aim for 2.5 pedaling instead. My longest rides to date have been about 25 miles and taken a little under two hours, so as I got going I thought about what kind of distance I wanted to cover, and I settled on 35 miles.

I rode on the same trail I've done my other long rides on...but obviously this one was longer.

Well...I made it all 35 miles, but those last 5 were tough. As a matter of fact, I was so zoned out at one point that I almost hit a car. Like...I was in the middle of the road and realized I had to stop before I hit it. It's not a moment I'm proud of, but it really made me realize a few things:
  • As a cyclist, no matter how tired you are you need to be even more alert than you are when driving
  • Don't assume people will stop for you, ever
  • Take those stop signs on bike paths seriously
  • Treat the trail like a road, follow the rules
As soon as I realized what was happening I slammed on my brakes and hopped out of the saddle. The guy driving the car just looked over and stared at me in disbelief, and I felt terrible. I looked him straight in the eye (although I was wearing sunglasses so he probably couldn't tell) and gasped, "I am SO sorry! That was totally my fault!"

Really, I just wanted to make sure he knew that I knew it was my fault, and that I wasn't trying to blame him. I realize that cyclists get a bad rap from a lot of drivers, sometimes for being dicks, but a lot of times it's for biking "defensively" to avoid getting killed. It's so easy to brush a cyclist off as being an asshole, and if you aren't a cyclist it's WAY easier because you don't know what it's like to share the road with vehicles that can easily kill you in an instant when you are legally obligated to be in the road (not on the sidewalk). But right then I knew that I had broken the rules of the road. I wasn't biking defensively, I was tired and wanted to get home, so I made sure that driver knew I wasn't trying to be a jerk...and hopefully he didn't!

Anyways...the last few miles after that were still brutal, but uneventful. As I crested the last hill a quarter mile from my car I wanted to cry because my legs were so tired. But I held it together! And with that, I completed my longest ride to date!
Sunday - weights
Though my legs were fried from Friday and Saturday's rides, I was more than ready for some upper body lifts on Sunday. I was in a terrible mood when I got to the gym, but lifting totally remedied that and I crushed my workout. I worked back, biceps, triceps, and abs: does a body good! I felt pretty fantastic after this workout, and my bad mood seemed to evaporate so that was a bonus!

And that's how last week went. I'm still bummed about not running, but I'm feeling better about cycling just from those two rides this week. My only hope is that it translates well when I get back to running too.

Have a great week!


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