Friday, December 12, 2014

The jumping off point: Not really a training recap

The first week of my official training plan for IMCDA is behind me! The workouts were short and manageable (I'm being lured into a false sense of 'I can handle this!'.) but the week itself was kind of a mess. This post will be kind of a mishmash of what's going on the first week of training, and a brief mention of the actual workouts. I haven't really decided how much detail I want to provide in my recaps of training.

Training this week kicked off with a rest day Monday!! My training weeks are written Mon-Sun and I liked having a rest day. At first I felt a little lame beginning my training with a big fat 0 in the training spreadsheet, and I had considered a short run because this week's workouts, as I said, were short, so rearranging, or throwing in a 20 min run wouldn't have been a huge issue. I ended up having a ton of errands to handle though (including taking my car for emissions and renewing my horribly overdue tabs. Whoops?!) so the rest day stood.
The plan. The food. 

As far as swimming goes, I haven't been in the water since August for my sprint tri, and only about 2-3 swims before that-none longer than about a half mile of swimming. My first lunch swim this week was ROUGH. My shoulders were burning before I made 100 yards, and my splits on my watch weren't exactly promising. I kept reminding myself "what if this was your first run in 4-5 months? what if you had only run 3-4x this year?" which helped me keep my focus in check. That is why the road to ironman is so long. I wish I had been swimming sooner, but it's okay that I wasn't.

The second swim of the week was at Master's swim! That was intimidating as all get out. I emailed the coach beforehand to ask her/reveal my skill level and make sure I wouldn't be a hindrance to the class. She reassured me I would fit right in, so I showed up, nerves and all. There were only a handful of women there, since most athletes are still slowly coming back from off season. This allowed me some extra 1:1 time with the coach though, which I greatly appreciated. She told me she didn't see any major issues with my stroke, and it actually looked "really good" and that she had been under the impression my swim would be a lot worse than it actually was. Turns out though, that I swim flat, and need to work on body rotation. I started working on this and whoa wake up call! It feels so exaggerated and awkward to rotate enough for her to say "that looks right".

On to #bikelove! Since summer, I have been increasing my rides, and simply spending more time in the saddle than ever before. My bike, which is named Baby, as in "Nobody puts Baby in the corner" because she spent a lot of time in corners, has seen more of my butt than in the last 5 years combined. I've LOVED my bike time, other than the saddle! I was battling some numbness this summer when my ironman boyfriend set me up for a bike fit at the shop he goes to. That included testing a couple different saddles, and finally deciding to try the Cobb V Flow Plus. We took our bikes out the next day to ride a portion of the IMCDA course, and by the last 8 or so miles, I was almost in tears from the pain of the saddle. I was miserable for the next few days, we pulled the saddle and tried another, with no luck. Then I tried his saddle with no split in it, and it was worse. I went back to my stock Scott Contessa saddle and it was okay, but I was sitting pretty far back on the seat, and not using my legs and booty to power myself enough (in my opinion, I'm no expert). After chatting with my ironyoda, I went back to the shop and asked to try the Cobb JOF 55. I was prepared to give it a few weeks, and not assess based on one ride. I bought chamois butter and feared the worst for my lady bits. But, I am in love. This saddle is amazing for me!! I definitely have some residual soreness from adjusting to new pressure points, but I am much more forward 'Off the Front' as the saddle promises, and I don't find myself adjusting repeatedly. I have made an effort to sit up and back on the saddle as well since duh, IMCDA boasts some climbing that will require that position as well. Between the saddle and my undying love of Coeur's seamless chamois, I'm a happy camper!
I used a video to check my form and saddle position! And #noangrykitty

Running of course, is my comfort zone. I'm working on adjusting to heart rate training though. *Cough Cough* I'm choking on all the pride I have to swallow to accept the paces I'm running. For now, I am utilizing the MAF 180 formula for my numbers. I keep reminding myself I don't have to be fast right now... and that if I could maintain the pace I'm running now at Ironman, it would be a dream. But, it's also within the realm of possibility. I'm not training at a pace that would be completely out of reach on a perfect race day. That is how I stay patient.

The only messy part was that, in typical Monica form, I fell down the stairs! Thursday morning I was (slowly, cautiously) carrying my cereal and coffee down the stairs and I slipped, landed hard on my back, hit my head AND spilled everything all over the new carpet. Fortunately it wasn't as bad as summer's fall, but still did some damage to my ragdoll neck. Fortunately, I still got in all the workouts without hindrance, but what a way to start!

 My recaps will probably change format without so much 'background' needed (did anybody need it anyway??) but this first week totaled 6 hours of training and a few doubles.

I am ALREADY so grateful for the mentors and role models I have, both close and far, who are going to be seriously invaluable to this journey.

And away we go!

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