Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Lessons Learned

Today I learned something important about my training abilities. Because I got to bed late last night, I chose to sleep to my normal non-training time and double up in the evening. I didnt think it would be too big a deal, my swim was an easy set totaling 2100M. My run was only supposed to be 50 minutes followed by 6 20sec strides. I figured ok, no big deal.

The swim went well with no issues. I got home from the gym and put dinner together real quick so I wouldnt have to eat too late and then headed out for my run. Right away, I knew it wouldnt be a good one. It was almost 90 and humid. I struggled through it and stopped myself at 30 minutes. I just had no energy and my legs felt like lead weights. If for some reason I ever have to double up like this again, I know I need to run before the swim.

While I have a training plan that is on paper and have been doing fairly well at executing the planned workouts, there are certain things not part of the plan that are almost as important that I have so far struggled with.

I need to make the effort to get to bed much earlier during the week (as I write this at 10:15 and really should be in bed). This way it will be easier for me to wake up early to get my scheduled training in.

I also need to schedule my weekday runs for the AM through most of this plan. It was 88 Degrees around 7PM this evening. I may also need to push some of the swims to the AM. The longest workouts during the week are my bike rides. The problem is that other then Friday, I leave for work at 6:30 AM and usually get up at 5:30. This would mean that I would often have to be up around 3AM if I needed to ride in the AM!! Knowing how it can be difficult for me to fall asleep, this is really not a preferred option. The one issue I may run into is I may end up some weeks doing rides 3 nights in a row from Wed-Fri. I know this wont be too bad. I would just need to strategically shuffle my rides around so that my easier bike is the middle day of that set.

The other big thing I know I need to be doing better at though I cant seem to get right is my diet. I need to at least lose the 20 pounds I put on over the winter. I dont eat too bad, but it is really difficult for me to lose weight so I need to be super careful what I eat. I have been reading the Paleo Diet for Athletes book. It is a really interesting read. Overall, it isnt too bad, but I just dont know if I could give up everything they consider to be unhealthy. The toughest thing is that it recommends to give up what most consider "healthy" carbs such as whole grains and beans. It does make the exception before/during/after training that you can eat the carbs.. This could possibly make it doable. I did a search on BT and found that those who did it struggled for a little bit, but felt so much better after that.

Finally, I need to make more time for some sort of functional/core strength training as well as yoga/trigger point/roller. These things are super important to keep me strong, flexible, and injury free. The other thing I am doing to try to stay injury free is changing the way I run. I have reread the important chapters of Chi Running and have begun to try and implement their method. I have noticed when I am in the groove and in the right position, running definitely feels easier and I dont get any aches in my knee. I find myself while I am running visualizing the three parts to the correct form and have to pull myself back into proper form. The problem has been holding the position. I know that will get easier with time, especially as I lose more weight.

Well, let me head off to bed before it is too too late


Shannon said...

Sounds like you've learned a lot.

I whither in the heat as well.

D10 said...

I like how your say 2100m was an easy set. I would be jumping up and down if I could nail a 2100m swim! Nice job.

Do you think your struggled during the run because you need better fueling before? I have been using NUUN and really like it.

Kevin said...

I actually use Nuun for most swims because i had found i would cramp up in my calves toward the end of my swims otherwise. I had a cliff mojo bar immediately following my swim so i think it may have been the temps and tired legs.

I also wondered if residual chlorine may have effected how i sweat, making it harder to control my body's temp? I noticed that the sweat was kinda like droplets rather then my usual soaking

Wes said...

I just went back and checked my training plan from last year to see what coach was prescribing for me on double days. There were no patters. Some days were swim, run, others swim, bike, and then a few were bike run.

What I did notice was that the runs on double days were in the 35-45 minute range.

Training for an Ironman is hard when you are an age grouper! Keep plugging away at it!

Jess said...

In my opinion, the best way to tweak dietary changes is to incorporate one or two small changes at a time. trying to do a complete overhaul all at once usually doens't seem to work.

Best of luck in the heat! At least the water's warm.

ShirleyPerly said...

Yep, running in sweltering heat is TOUGH. Even after 2-3 weeks of acclimating, it's still not easy...

I like how you're approaching your training as being more than just the swim-bike-run workouts. I agree that those other things can make or break a lot of us.

Steph Bachman said...

Hi Kevin - Feel free to check out Doug's logs on BT for workout scheduling ideas. He does a 1 hour bike from 6:30-7:30am some days, but schedules his long bikes for Saturdays.

Chad in the AZ Desert said...

I always struggle when I do my runs at the end of the day, especially if I'm trying to do anything hard (tempo, intervals, etc) I can't imagine trying to do it right after swimming. At least you learned something from it.

teacherwoman said...

Training is definitely full of lessons like this. And juggling the workouts, especially as they get longer, can be quite the challenge. Sounds like you know what kind of tweaks you need to make, just don't make too many changes at once! Baby steps!

And, I have to throw in a plug for "TriPower". I know I keep talking about how wonderful it is, but its TRUE! It might have the supplemental stuff you are looking for... ie. core, strengthening, endurance, flexibility, etc. It's wonderful. And once you get a routine down with it, it makes a world of a difference. I think even if you start with 2-4 sessions a week, it helps! Check it out!

You're doing awesome, Kevin! Keep up the great work!

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

great learnings! as you figure out what works best for you and adjust accordingly, I'm sure your training will fall into place. :-)

Jon Gilchrist said...

I'm out here in Houston and have a hard time in the heat as well. And as a clydesdale, I'm trying to lean down while still keeping my clydesdale status. I also have a hard time getting enough rest between work, MBA program, and tri training. So, please keep ti may help me keep better informed. Good luck!!

sRod said...

Man, I struggle with the diet too. Especially when you're training hard and all you want is big ass hamburger and a milkshake--but you know it's in your best interest to get the salad instead.

Nitmos said...

Chi Running was an interesting read. It messed with my head (and stride) for a bit but I was over thinking the technique. I ended up getting more aches and pains while trying there technique. But I'm sure I was doing it wrong.