Friday, June 8, 2012

Catching up

After the 10K on Saturday, I was ahead on the run training, but I still needed to get some biking and swimming in. Sunday, we took the kids to Lake of the Woods for a bit and I decided to bring my bike in the van so that I could go on a ride afterwards. My plan called for 97 minutes of riding, so I decided to head roughly south, a ways past our house, and then double back. The SW corner of our subdivision is at the intersection of county roads 700 E and 1400 N (aka Rising and Windsor), so at every intersection I could tell how many miles away I was.

The day was perfect for riding, not too warm, and with only a light breeze. I biked past the corn and soybean fields, seeing the occasional car, cyclist, and one runner, but for the most part being on my own. I ended up riding past the same place where I had seen the cows on my long run in April, and they were out in full force, but I once again didn't have a chance to get a good picture.

I estimated that I'd need to turn around about 6.5 miles south of my subdivision, but decided to go the full 7 miles to 700 N. I figured I was feeling an occasional light breeze so the return trip would be with the wind, so I should go faster. As soon as I turned around, I realized I was wrong, and I was heading into the wind. And the road started sloping uphill to boot! Granted, the climb was very gradual, and the wind was fairly light, but I had already biked one hour and was feeling tired, both from the ride and from the 10K, so I ended up slowing down quite a bit. I also had finished all my water, so around mile 20, I felt like I was ready to quit, but short of asking Lenore to wake up the kids, pack them into the van, and come to rescue me, there wasn't much of an option other than trudging home. I finally arrived home nearly two hours after having started, thirsty and exhausted.

The good news was that I covered 27 miles, which is longer than the Olympic bike distance. The bad news was that I felt like I could hardly walk, let alone run a 10K. I'm definitely going to need some brick practice in the future!

I decided to skip the last swim of the week, convincing myself that I exceeded the total number of training minutes in my plan anyway. This, of course, ignores the fact that I exceeded it mainly on the run, which is currently my strongest discipline, and was heavily behind on the swim, which is my weakest. But I also think my body really needed the rest.

I got back in the saddle on Tuesday; this time, the wind was from the NE, and since going east means heading into the city, I opted to go north instead. My muscles were tired and it was a little slow going, but I made it to the north end of Rising, where it dead-ends into Bloomington road. From there, you can cut east for a short stretch and continue north on Lindsey Rd., which was surprisingly hilly. I made it to the top of a rise and reached my planned 35-minute turnaround time, so I headed home. The way back was much faster, with the wind at my back. Turns out that I also was losing some non-trivial elevation; I discovered later that my ride out was pretty much uphill the whole way, and ended over 100ft higher than it started! Upon further research, it turned out that I was just shy of reaching the highest point in all of Champaign county. I'll have to investigate more closely next time.

With the speedy return, I was home quickly and had to add an extra mile around the subdivision to make my goal of 64 minutes (actually ended up being 68). This ride felt much easier, in part because it was shorter and in part because I managed correctly to make it harder on the way out than back. Did not see any cows, but did pass some horses and a donkey.

Tuesday night, I wanted to fit in a quick swim, so I dashed off to the ARC right after singing the kids a lullaby. I was in the pool by 8:30, but turns out that when they say that the pool closes at 9, they really kick you out by 8:45, so I only managed to get 400 meters in, doing 100 meter repeats with 12 breaths in between. On the plus side, I didn't have too much trouble with breathing on this set, so I'm hoping I can transition to week 2 of 0 to 1650 soon.

Wednesday was our speed work session. The instructions for the day were 5 repeats of 200 "hard" + 400 "pace" on 2 minutes rest, followed by 5 repeats of 400 "pace" + 200 "hard", with a 4-minute rest between the two sets. The other guidance I was given was that "hard" for me should be 62 seconds per 200m, and "pace" was around 2:40 for the 400. I didn't take this guidance to heart, however, and interpreted "hard" as "all out," and "pace" as "pretty hard." My first 200 was finished in 46 seconds, followed by about 2:00 for the following 400, after which I felt like I was going to die! In retrospect, it was probably a bad sign that I passed a few other runners on the 200 stretch.

I spent the next little while trying to find the right pace, and was getting it pretty close by the end of the first set, settling in at the back of the pack. The second set was easier because you got to rest after the 200m sprint, rather than having to run another 400m. I only got my splits at the 200 and 600 points, but I think I was running the 400's a little faster and the 200's a little slower than target, but at least my total time was close to the mark.
By the way, I love how RunKeeper makes it look like I was running some killer hill repeats by stretching out the scale of the elevation graph here!

Thursday was a rest day. I was pretty tired, though my DOMS seems to have peaked last night/this morning, so maybe I should have done some recovery activity. I did notice that Thursday morning I weighed nearly 3 lbs (!) lighter than Wednesday, despite drinking copious amounts of water.

Today I went swimming. The ambitious plan was to wake up early and get to the pool; in reality, I only managed to wake up early-ish, with not enough time to get in a full workout before the end of the morning pool hours at 7:45 (that is if they even let me stay until 7:45!). I "pivoted" and went into the office early instead, and stopped at the pool on my way home. Simple workout, 4x100 followed by 8x50. (Probably should have stuck to the 6x50 of the 0 to 1650 plan, since I ended up being 2 minutes late coming home.) This time, the 12 breaths of rest after each 100 felt like plenty, so I think I'm ready for week 2.

Plan for the weekend: Sat AM: run with Lenore and twins, Sun AM: long bike ride, Sun PM: swim. Seems doable.

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