Sunday, March 2, 2008

ironman training interferes with weekend tradition

when preparing for an ironman (especially your first ironman) it’s easy to let the ironman consume so many aspects of your life. when you aren’t training, you are preparing to train. you’ve got to plan your workouts, track your progress, prepare water bottles & nutrition for each workout, pack gym bags, eat right, get to bed early, etc. weekday (mon – fri) training depending on which phase of your training schedule you are in consists of 1 – 3 hours daily. it is those weekend training days when the hours really add up & we refer to these workouts as our “key” workouts.

during these key workouts we are supposed to be ready to perform at our best so it’s imperative that we don’t overdue it during the week. the weekends are our opportunity to log both the long miles & time. we begin to introduce some serious brick (swim + bike or bike + run) workouts into these workouts too. these workouts closely resemble the actual mileage that we’ll have to put in on race day. so for an ironman we are talking 100+ mile bike rides & 20+ mile runs. while we don’t move slow, we don’t hit these workouts at race pace either which means that many of these workouts will consume 6 – 8 hours of our day. since this season’s training has begun i’ve begun to wonder – where did my weekends go?

t3, the training group i’m with, schedules our long rides on saturday & our long runs on sunday. this weekend’s schedule included a 65 mile ride followed by a 30 minute run on saturday & a 15 mile run on sunday followed by a 1 – 2 hour “recovery” ride. we normally kick these workouts off first thing in the morning so we are done by mid afternoon. we of course spend the rest of our day recovering from that morning’s workout & preparing for the next day’s workout – sounds fun huh?

for the past two sundays i’ve been fighting back! while it’s great to meet up with the group prior to each workout i often find myself running by myself at my own pace on long run days so beyond the initial meet up i don’t get much from the group. as a result i’ve taken my sunday morning’s back!

for the past 4 – 5 years kristin & i have gotten into a groove on sunday morning’s. they are our special little time to spend relaxing with one another & enjoying the simplicity of things. we’d wake up around 7:30 AM (what used to seem early to both of us – not early anymore) & make a BIG pot of coffee. when it is cold outside we will bundle up with blankets & when the weather is nice we open the doors & windows & listen to the sweet morning sounds. we’ll go through waves of making the same breakfast dishes weeks on end until we get bored with it & then we’ll repeat this cycle until we begin to get bored with the next meal. some of the longest running dishes included ham, cheese, & mushroom omelets (no ham anymore since kristin is now a vegetarian), whole wheat pancakes, buckwheat buttermilk waffles with peanut butter, even plain ole’ cereal had its run, & now oatmeal is king. by 8:00 AM we’’ll sit down together with our cups of coffee & breakfast & watch the
CBS sunday morning show with charles osgood. the sound of that morning trumpet from abblasen makes me smile from cheek to cheek. CBS sunday morning is such a simple show – mostly just good hearted news with some interesting & fun facts along the way. when the show concluded an hour & a half later (9:30 AM) with nothing but a scene of nature from somewhere beautiful in this world kristin & i were relaxed & looking forward for tackling those remaining weekend to-dos.

since ironman training & beginning to bike in general i’ve missed a many of sunday morning’s with kristin. i am happy that today i was able to steal back another sunday morning during this ironman training & now that i’m up between 5:30 / 6:00 AM i am beginning to enjoy the
texas hill country reporter show that comes on just prior to CBS sunday morning. if you were to ask me what i’m going to enjoy most about not training for an ironman i’m positive i’ll tell you that it’s having my sunday morning’s back with kristin, our BIG cups of coffee, our ritual breakfast meals, & what our friends call our “old people” TV show.

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