Monday, May 19, 2014

A Week In The Life... (May 12-18, 2014)

Welcome back!  This was a really great (albeit busy) week for me both in and out of the training sphere.  I had some great workouts, got to do some travelling and finished off the week by getting to cheer on my friends and Rocky Top Multisport Club-mates racing in Sunday's Rev3 Knoxville Triathlon!

Training Log:
I'm going to try a little different format for my training log and chronicle it by day to see how that works out.  Let's get right to it and start with...

I started this week off with a nice easy run in the new Hoka Conquests.  I was still fighting a little nagging pain the left ankle so I didn't want to overdo it, just get the legs loosened up after all the bike miles last weekend.  Weather was nice at 5:45am, just cool enough to make it pleasant running weather.  It's also starting to get lighter now, which is nice.  I set out on my run and immediately felt my pace was good.  The Conquests felt much better than Bondi's that I had before.  To me, the Conquests feel a little more like a regular shoe, just with a lot more cushion.  I felt like the Bondi's tried to change my form a bit too much. My normal morning run route is a 1 mile (almost exactly) lap around my neighborhood.  It's a good little course with around 100ft elevation gain per lap.  I completed two circuits relatively pain free and decided to call it a morning.  

After work, I met up with the Rocky Top Multisport Club for their weekly swim at the lake.  This time I remembered my Garmin.  I got there a little late but still got in just under 1100 meters before we called it a night.  I had hoped to get in a bit more but it was still a great night in the water.  The water temp is coming up nicely and the wetsuit was almost unnecessary.  Even after only a few weeks, I'm feeling quite a bit more comfortable in the open water now.  I still feel like the swim is my weakest link and there's a lot more work to be done before XTERRA.

After a great swim Monday night, I was back up early for my Tuesday morning pool session.  I felt a little slow but my times weren't too bad.  I put in 1600m in 32:26 with an average pace of 2:01/100m.

Wednesday was another double day for me.  Kicked it off with some strength and conditioning circuits with my training buddy David.  I really feel that strength training is a vital ingredient in my training plan.  I don't do any heavy lifting but focus on plyometrics and  body weight exercises with some light weights thrown in for good measure.

Wednesday afternoon I headed to the Urban Wilderness trails for a preview of the XTERRA Knoxville run course.  I had run most of the trails that make up this course except one and it is a monster.  The course is listed at 4.1 miles but clocked in on my Garmin 910XT at 4.43 miles.  Total elevation gain on the course is just under 500ft with 200 of those feet coming in the last 1.5 miles.  In fact, last trail gains all of those 200 ft in just over .5 miles.  Needless to say, it's steep.  I cranked out a decent time though completing the whole course in 44:26.  Ankle felt much better on this run as well.  I was wearing a compression sleeve and only had a slight bit of pain about halfway through the run which went away after a short stop to stretch.

Thursday morning was another early pool day for me.  Workout for the day called for increase in total distance to 1650m and increase in long set to 1200m.  Pace felt good through the 1200 but I held back a little.  I picked up the pace during the 100's and then spent everything I had left in the 50's .  My third set I turned in my fastest 50m split to date at :43.7.  

Friday morning was another circuit workout with David.  Maybe in another post I will go into my strength training philosophy a little more (Note to self), but for now suffice it to say pushups were done as were situps and squats.  I also picked up and put down some metal a bunch of times.  What more could you ask for?

Saturday I joined the Knoxville Bicycle Company for their group road ride. The route followed a lot of the same roads as the Thursday evening rides but with some more added in.  After passing the Dam, we split off into two groups.  I followed the 40 mile group while the others went for a planned 60 mile route.  We finished the day at 38.79 miles (a new distance record for me).  What's better is that I came in feeling like I had more in the tank...

Since I felt like I had more in the tank, I went back for round two of the XTERRA course that afternoon.  I was planning for a slower run but the pace was still pretty good.  Finished off the course in 47:33 with no ankle pain at all.  I'm pretty stoked about that.  I also confirmed yet again that the final climb is a beast.  I really think that will be the point at which XTERRA Knoxville will be won (or lost).

While Sunday is normally my rest day, Cedar Bluff Cycles was having their Trek Bikes demo day at Concord Park... so I met David out there and we toodled around a bit.  I took a Boone 9 cyclocross bike out on the trails while he played on a Remedy 9 29er.  Then we hopped on some new Domane road bikes and spun around for a bit.  It was a nice fun little afternoon.  I have no idea how far we rode, I didn't even turn on the Garmin.

Other Exciting Things From The Week:
As I mentioned earlier, there was a lot going on this week outside of training as well.  Friday I took a little trip to Helen,GA with some guys from work to help set up for the Southern Worthersee.  The SoWo, as it's called, is a European Car meet with Volkswagens, Audis, BMW's and the like coming from all over to hang out and talk cars.  Helen, GA is a quaint little Baviarian styled town in the mountains of North Georgia.  This means, to get there, you must drive some of the best twisty mountain roads in the country.  Beautiful scenery, twisty roads and all wheel drive = not a bad way to spend a day.

Sunday was the Rev3 Knoxville Triathlon.  I spent the morning standing on the side of the road on the biggest climb on the bike route dressed in a morph suit cheering on the racers holding a sign that said "Smile if you pee'd yourself!".  I wasn't alone though.... oh no, I had help.

Nothing to see here officers....

It was a lot of fun.  Several of our club members placed and everyone raced their hearts out.  I'm really proud to call myself a member of Rocky Top Multisport.

Final Thoughts:
Whew, another crazy week in the books.  I made some good progress in my training and I'm feeling stronger each day.  XTERRA looms on the horizon and I'm really looking forward to it.  This week I'm off work and headed for some relaxation on the beach.  Not taking the bike so this week will a be a run/swim week for the most part.  Could be worse though!  

Final totals for the week: Swim - 4312m, Bike - 39mi, Run - 11mi, Total Time: 5.55 hours.

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