Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Let's Du This (Lake Country Du/Discovery Run - Weeks 1 & 2)

If I want to return to multi sport racing and distance running, I need to train.  I'm usually the queen of setting myself up with a training plan that looks fantastic on paper, but is damn near impossible to execute unless all the stars align - which they rarely seem to do.  So for these 2 races I'm going to try something a little different.  If I miss a workout, it's gone. No going back. No making it up.  Just keep moving forward.  Hopefully this mindset will help with the constant feelings of anxiety I get from missing a workout - and maybe, just maybe, fend off the mid-training cycle meltdown(s)!

Week 1 (August 24th - 29th)
I started this training cycle with a really awesome 4 mile run. The weather was a key factor because for the first time in what feels like forever, it was in the low 60's, overcast, and breezy instead of the hot, humid, sweatbox we've been in for quite a while.  Since Mr. R&R was with me, I deviated from my usual high-traffic road route and was able to take previously unknown to me loop around a large retention pond.  I normally would stay off this loop because it's hidden among lots of tall grass and I wouldn't feel safe venturing off the road alone.  It was relatively flat for awhile and then slowly began gaining elevation as it meandered back toward the road.  If I thought that little hill was tough, there was a long, steep, beast awaiting me.  My pace skyrocketed going up that sucker, but fortunately what goes up, must come down and I was able to do a decent job of fixing my pace on the downhill.  I felt like I was flying.  I ended up finishing about 37 seconds slower than my PR at that distance, so it was a pretty damn good time!

Distance: 4.0 miles
Time: 38:46
Avg. Pace: 9:41/mile

Tuesday was another really good cool weather run.  For as much as I bitch about Wisconsin winters (and they are truly miserable) I really love fall and spring here and I think I'm ready for fall.

Distance: 3.0 miles
Time: 28:33
Avg. Pace: 9:30/mile

Wednesday should have been an easy run, but between work (trying to get ready to be out of the office for a week) and some issues I've been having with my left foot, it was a couch day.

Nothing says fun like an 11 hour day at the office followed by a Groundhog Day workout.  I have a love/hate relationship with running repeats.  They're really f-ing hard, but I feel like they do a lot to make me faster and these repeats weren't the standard 400 meter type.  The training plan called for 4x800.  Oh yeah...800 meters (about a half a mile) of running really fast, followed by a 2 minutes of recovery time.  It was almost completely dark out by the time I finished my warm up, so I ended up doing my intervals by running back and forth down the main drag of a nearby, well-lit, and heavily patrolled office park.  I may have looked ridiculous to the security guys, but I'm pleased to say that I nailed my goal paces for the workout.

Warm Up: .5 miles @ 10:14 pace
Interval 1: .5 miles @ 8:38 pace
Interval 2: .5 miles @ 8:48 pace
Interval 3: .5 miles @ 8:44 pace
Interval 4: .5 miles @ 8:42 pace
Cool Down: .17 miles @ 10:02 pace

Now I need to work on doing the rest periods at a slower run, not a pokey walk!

Friday: 10 hour work day + last minute errands = No Workout

Saturday: It would have been nice to take my new ride out on the road, but the all day mist interspersed with downpours made that impossible.  Mr. R&R and I started our day out with a damp walk through The Zoo for a special behind-the-scenes tour event.  The "special" tours were pretty unimpressive with the exception of the fish/reptile tour.  There's a 55,000 gallon fish tank known as Lake Wisconsin, containing examples of native fish species, in that building and we got to see it from above, which was really crazy looking.  Apparently there's 55,000 gallons of water in the main tank and another 55,000 gallons of Lake Michigan water being tempered for circulation below it - and they get water deliveries daily!  Additionally, some of the fish in that tank would be considered record-sized if they were caught in the wild.

Lake Wisconsin From Above
As unimpressed as we were by most of the tours, there were plenty of other animals willing to ham it up for our amusement; including these bongos who posed for their best impression of American Gothic.

After a few hours of schlepping around in the drizzle, we headed home and Mr. R&R hit The Cave while I hit the couch for a short nap!  Once he finished his workout and headed off to his monthly massage appointment, it was my turn.  I figured out how to get the new bike into the trainer, set myself up with something to watch, and spun in place for the next 45 minutes.  Holy sweatfest.
I rode for 45 minutes and covered about 12.5 miles at a pretty decent speed - the best I've done on the new wheels so far.

I was dripping sweat after the first mile and was pretty sure that I was going to keel over when I climbed off, but I scurried up the stairs and into the rain for a 1 mile transition run. 9:23 average...not bad right off the bike!

Sunday: Gone Camping

Week 1 Totals:
Bike: 12.58 miles
Run: 11.15 miles
Total Miles: 23.73 miles
Total Time: 2:34:10

Week 2 (August 30th - September 6th)
I may have been gone camping, but that doesn't mean that I sat on my ass with a book and a beer the whole time - just most of it. Mr. R&R and I hiked about 5 miles of the Ice Age trail in blistering sun and swarms of mosquitos.  Activity always makes me feel better about my beer consumption!

Tuesday was all about packing up, heading home, and doing the mountain of laundry that results from camping!

I was on vacation all week, so I laced up my shoes and went for a nice 4 mile run around 8:30am.  It was already pretty hot out and I'm happy I got it over with early.  It also did't hurt that it meant not having to ruin my hair right after The Mane Wrangler finished covering up the grays and making it all shiny, straight, and pretty!

I also made a pitstop at Emery's today to pick up an aero bottle which will allow me to drink on the bike without having to come to a complete stop and wiggle a water bottle out of the cage inside my tiny bike frame.  After some installation issues, I hopped on and gave it a try.  I think some fine tuning is going to be required.

I spent 90 minutes auditioning yet another massage therapist.  Ever since my massage guru left the industry at the end of May, I've been working my way through other therapists in the practice trying to find a match.  The first one was a resounding 'No' (The guy left me in pain for 3 days after).  The next two were good, but not as awesome as the therapist I was used to.  I think my search may finally be over - and not a moment too soon.

When Mr. R&R got home for work, we both wanted to ride, but night was fast approaching so we decided to do a quick local loop.  Well...it was a local loop, but it was anything but quick due to too many intersections and a multi-use trail that had us riding the brakes the whole way. 35 minutes to ride just under 7 miles?  Grrrrr.  Additionally, my new aero bottle kept getting out of whack every time I hit a bump - and there were a lot of bumps.  More fine tuning will be required before this thing sees the light of day again.

I swear it was so hot outside you could have fried an egg on my driveway.  I had the urge to do something, but the thought of going outside was just unbearable, so I filled up my aero bottle, plopped myself on the trainer in front of a movie,  blasted a fan in my face, and rode for an hour.  I was up and down from aero about every 5 minutes, but it's getting better.  I seem to be able to stay in aero a little longer every time.  After the ride, I had a text waiting from Maverick telling me to hightail it to the bar because everyone (her, Mr. R&R, Yada Yada, WhoHa, and some other people) was there.  I dove into the shower and was presentable and on my way out the door in 25 minutes!

Mr. R&R and I caught the hiking bug again while we were camping so we set out to finish off the Lapham Peak Segment of the Ice Age Trail.  It was hot, but fun - and hopefully I'll be updating our hiking blog in the relatively near future.

After a 4.5 mile hike in the heat, we headed home so I could clean up and meet my little sister and her friends to go bridesmaid dress shopping.  Yep...Little Sis is getting married next spring!  Mr. R&R and I also spent quality time hacking together a tool to fix my aero bottle problems that night.

And let's not forget the most important part of Saturday...Walter's 6th Birthday!!!!!

Birthday Bunny!!!!

On Friday night, Yada Yada invited us to join him and Texas on a long, slow ride from their house to a little town about 20 miles away for lunch.  We loaded up and headed North to ride "All The Hills".  I'm happy to say that I think I'm finally getting comfortable on the new bike, which we were all jokingly calling 'The High Maintenance Bitch'.  We stopped in the town of Cedarburg for lunch (mmm...salty fries) and to refill our water bottles before reversing our route back to Yada Yada  and Texas' house.

Pretty bikes all in a row on the restaurant patio
When we were done, I had officially logged the longest ride I've ever done: 38.55 miles - and my aero bottle stayed put!

Week 2 Totals:
Bike: 64.27 miles
Run: 4.16 miles
Hiking: 9.49 miles
Total Miles: 77.92 miles
Total Time: 9:05:45

What's the longest bike ride you've ever been on?  Done any hiking lately?

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