Sunday, February 5, 2012

Month in Review - January (and December 2011)

December 2011
Swim: 11,500 yards
Bike: 400.7 miles
Run: 75 miles
Other: 8.6 miles
Weights/Core: 12 sessions
Total Time: 42 hours 27 minutes

2011 Totals:
Swim: 252,575 yards
Bike: 5316.35 miles
Run: 1105.5 miles
Other: 130.15 miles (walking, hiking)
Weights/Core: ~30 hours
Total Time: 613 hours 32 minutes

January 2012
Swim: 23,425 yards
Bike: 453.25 miles
Run: 73 miles
Other: 32.4 miles (walk, hike, snowshoe - mostly walk)
Weights/Core: 18 sessions, 5 hours
Total Time: 55 hours 7 minutes

Not sure exactly what to say about this prep and semi-structured base period...I like a routine. I like working out a lot. I like having mojo. I like going hard. There has not been very much of any of this. In December I sort of did whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted; but it was not very much. I got in the pool a few times but my swims did not continue to be good (as they had been, surprisingly, after my 2 month layoff). My often grumpy shoulder did its grumpy thing. I did short trainer rides which I enjoyed and allowed me to keep up with various tv shows that are on after my bedtime. I started going to a computrainer class at a local multisport store. I LOVE THE COMPUTRAINER. If I owned a computrainer I don't think I would ever ride outside. (This is not a problem I have to worry about given the cost. But I know the risk would be high given the amount of time I spent on my old run down trainer last summer when the roads were available.) I ran slow and short. I wore a heart rate monitor which continued week after week to tell me that my heart would explode at any pace faster than a walk (sometimes even at a walk). I spent the last week of the year visiting my hub's family and gaining a few last lbs.

On January 2 I started revamping my training and eating. Attention to recovery window refueling. Attention to adding fruits, veggies, colors. Attention to avoiding starches in the evening. The only hard part is what happens after 7pm. Fruits and veggies instead of starches during the day has been easy for me. Cutting out my luna bar + skim milk nightly dessert, difficult. Sometimes, very difficult. As always, easier to put on the weight than take it off, but I think I am on track to be back to my last summer race weight before my first A race in June.

Training itself is going according to plan. Although I haven't been feeling great I think that its to be expected (for me) during early base phase. The stuff that gets me going is the hard stuff. I don't have a lot of hard stuff going on. I was diligent about keeping an honest (read: slow) pace on all runs. I slowly started building back my yardage in the pool. Although its much easier to just hammer out 2 3000 yard swims (and then not have to drag myself back to the pool for a 3 time each week), its not the best for my shoulder or probably for my return to swimming fitness (which I know will return eventually). I got in 11 swims, ideally it would have been 13, but still a move in the right direction. I think I am actually going to go see a physical therapist about my shoulder. I know that once my fitness returns I will want to swim more and at that point the nagging pain will be a barrier - better to take care of it now. Riding has been good overall. Have continued with once a week computrainer class. I did my first ever FTP test (20 minute), which I enjoyed a lot. Finally a hard effort! I don't know what the number means relative to my peers. Regardless of the number, it will get me farther/faster the less I weigh and the better I can handle my bike. I played a bit with the QT2 calculator in terms of bike split predictions based on my FTP and cannot imagine being able to ride that fast (despite my power/weight ratio saying I should be able to). (Note, Rachel, RIDE YOUR BIKE OUTSIDE!!!)  I only did one long ride but was on my bike 18 times. Early in the month during a ride, my saddle went flying back on the rails (screw loose). I fixed it up and kept going but over time have come to realize that I think I didn't put it back in its right place. I developed some increasingly serious foot pain over a 2-3 week period. For a few days I actually got quite worried that I had a fracture in the head of my second metatarsal. At first I thought it was that my kinvaras, which I had been doing all my running in over the past 6 weeks. While those shoes are shot, a week off from running didn't completely fix the problem and the pain seems to get worse in the 6 hours after a ride. I finally moved my saddle and things seem to be improving. Still a work in progress though. I also changed my cycling shoes. For x-mas James got me proper triathlon shoes. Per the cycling shoe guy I went down in size from what I had been wearing - he said they should be snug. I am not sure if perhaps they are a hair too small? It also could be a cleat issue. Gonna have to keep playing with things. Lastly, I have been good (finally) about strength training. I built myself a faux-TRX and have been rotating between it, my kettlebells, and free weights/bosu ball at the gym. Good stuff. I love weights. I wish I were one of those people who had energy to workout in the morning and evening. I would love to hit the weights not immediately after my morning swim or run when I'm already a bit fatigued.

All in all, things are proceeding. My 20 week structured training plan began on January 30 for Patriot HIM on June 18. I did a modified Fitzgerald Level 6 last year - I was just working my way into being able to run 4 days a week last year - this year I am completely ready for it. So although I will again be working on a variant of it, I hope for it to differ because of its increased focus on the run, instead of being a bit short each week. Perhaps I should take a look at level 7 as well.

Onward to February!

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