Sunday, August 7, 2011

Why HELLO Ironman Training!

Wow, I don't even know where to begin.  The last two weeks have been peak training weeks with all the exhaustion and raw emotion that goes with them.  It's funny....until last week I was thinking how manageable this whole Ironman training thing was.  Sure, it was pretty time-consuming, and I've given up a lot, but it really was not THAT hard to balance it all.  I had always heard how you get to this point in training where you can barely form coherent thoughts, you no longer care about getting ready for work and you just want to eat all the time.  After these last two weeks I can definitely say that it's all true.  Here are some of my highlights:

Thursday, July 28...Run 2:30:49, 13.4 miles:
The pre-work long run. This was tough. I'm so sick of this crazy high humidity....I can't breathe in it! First six miles I was feeling sooooo nauseous, but I'm still not sure why. Finally went away and then the legs started to hurt. Really bad. I don't think I have ever run on legs that hurt this bad before. I was trying my hardest to pick them up and move them forward, but they just.would.not.go. They hurt so bad they were almost numb. Very weird. I did pull down the pace from 11:21 to 11:14 in the last 45 minutes though, so I definitely kept pushing. This was an emotionally exhausting run. Then I got home, did a 10 minute ice bath and immediately had to get ready and go to work. Made for a really long day.

Sunday, July 31...Bike 6:43:30, 105 miles with Run 24:28, 2.19 miles:
Really, really long, tough day today.  I wanted to stay local since we've been traveling so much, so ended up doing the majority of this workout alone (although my super duper IronSpouse did join me for about three hours of the ride!  he's the best!).  Riding long around here is just draining.  SO much traffic.  SO much stop-and-go.  Just not very enjoyable at all.  And it wore on me.  And when will this heat and humidity break just even a little bit?!!!  I was so disgustingly full of sweat, sunscreen and bugs when I got home I could barely stand to be around myself!  Proud of myself for getting this done, but also completely freaked out that (1) I have another GIANT week next week, including a seven hour ride in Madison! and (2) that the race is so much longer than what I did today.  I'm definitely getting scared.  Like really, really, really scared.  Let's just hope we don't have a repeat of today's weather six weeks from now!!!  Now I must go eat.  I'm about to pass out.  My body is all out of whack and I've got injuries popping up all over the place. 

Thursday, Aug. 4....Run 2:51:40, 15.4 miles:
I am SO exhausted.  After getting up at 4am, running for almost three hours, sitting in meetings all day, then a work happy hour and a late arrival back home, I just can't keep my eyes open one more minute.  I feel like I am on the verge of a breakdown (both physically and mentally!).

Saturday, Aug. 6....Swim 1:24:20, 3700 meters:
And finally...a good workout! This was great. Just straight swimming. I didn't care about pace or time (although I was shooting for as close to 1:30 as possible)....I just swam. It was so nice to not have to deal with pain every step or pedal body was so happy. My L shoulder did start hurting around 3000, but that's not terribly surprising. Needs ice and ibuprofen. All in all a really good morning at the pool. Yay!

Next week is a recovery week (YIPPEEEEE!!!) and well-timed since my family is coming to visit.  I can not even express how nice it will be to actually feel like I have a life outside of Ironman training!  Then one week of final build and we go into a three week taper.  I am definitely somewhere in between "this can't be over quickly enough" and "holy crap, I'm not ready....I don't want to do this!!!"  But whether I like it or not, Sept. 11 is on its way.  All I can do is follow (and trust!) the plan and take really good care of myself for the next five weeks.  I can't believe it's almost time.

- Her

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