One month of solid training is officially in the books for me. I somehow managed not to run any races or do anything foolish considering the racing schedule that is ahead of me. Although I feel as though I'm in mediocre shape, I think it is healthy to acknowledge the small achievements so far:
1. Completing two months of swimming lessons without frustration while building additional confidence that my 70.3 goal is more attainable than ever.
2. Taking two weeks OFF. No running, no swimming, no biking. Emotionally, I was a monster, but physically, I am refreshed and ready to get focused on the next six months. I never took a day off after the Chicago marathon and by the middle of December, I was exhausted to say the very least.
3. Cutting my mile time in the pool down to 44 minutes. (Don't laugh!) When this journey started I couldn't dream of swimming that far and halfway through swimming lessons, I was splashing through a mile no faster than 50 minutes.
4. Keeping up with 3 two-a-days per week during the entire month of January (about 9 long workouts per week total).
February promises to be an interesting month of training as I was coaxed (quite easily) into signing up for the New Orleans half marathon this weekend. I haven't ran over 8 miles since October so I am relying solely on my overall fitness. Later on in the month, I'm doing the JCC Indoor Tri, which is a 500 yard swim, 8 mile ride on a spin bike, and 2 mile run on the upstairs track. Coming up is a bit of a rest week after 13.1 and then workouts will get longer leading up to finally being able to get outside to ride during March. (Spring!!!!!!!!)
I suggest reading the last excerpt before continuing. It is now January 7th and my half ironman is 6 months away.
Over two weeks ago, I was feeling extremely fatigued. All of this after running the Chicago marathon and not taking more than one day off in a row. It was time for a break. Luckily, this coincided with the holidays and my road trip to South Dakota and Iowa for friends and family visits. I slept til almost 8am every single day!
So now whether I feel refreshed or not, it's time to get serious about training and start getting on a schedule. After 8 lessons with Ann at the J, I feel like I can get in the pool and not be embarrassed by my lack of understanding any type of stroke. I reached 2000 yards finally before my break so I know that this whole triathlon is possible. I have a borrowed indoor trainer from one of my friends, and I signed up for the New Orleans Rock 'n Roll Marathon on February 2nd.
So that's where I'm at now. I have gotten lots of winter tips from other athletes, like, going outside and laying facedown in the snow to mimic early season open water swimming. I'm still working up the courage to do that, especially since it's been below 0 for the last two weeks. I'm slowly warming up to the indoor cycling thing, but it is about as interesting as the dreadmill. The longest run I've gone for so far leading up to my half marathon is about an hour (and it was not fast).
Week 1 is going well otherwise. I just got done taking down Christmas decorations in my house and stuck my bike where my tree was, got back into the pool, and outside for some cold runs. I am ready!