Well...through the first 12 weeks of training I was able to put in a total of 508 miles running, 900 miles of biking, and 138,050 yards of swimming to go along with 35 trips to the weight room, 24 sessions of plyometrics, as well as lots of speed drills, strides, and core work. In the first 12 weeks my weight went from 182 lbs. to 162. My fitness grew tremendously and I was pretty pleased. I thought it was a perfect time to recharge the batteries. This is what I oftentimes tell my wife when I need an afternoon nap or even an evening nap occasionally. During summer training I'm addicted to naps, sometimes as long as 2 hours. I decided after working out Tuesday I was going to take a 5 day break. The break meant nothing...no running, swimming, biking, or lifting. On Sunday I decided the batteries were charged and I rode my bike for 2 hours on the trainer, my longest ride yet. It was hard for me to justify taking time off but I wasn't recovering as well from workouts and felt like my swimming was at a bit of a plateau. The toughest part for endurance athletes is to back down. As a coach, I was often telling kids they needed a break but for myself I always want to do more. I had to remind myself my big races are not until July and August. I started training on November 3rd and only had one day in the first 12 weeks when I didn't train. I know in the short term I will lose a bit of fitness but I believe the tradeoff will be well worth the long term gains I get from this break. During the 4 days off I was able to lay out a pretty detailed plan for myself for the next 3 months. I have set some monthly benchmark goals for myself. Here are a few of them.
1. Swim 3x 500's on 10:00 holding a 6:45 average by the end of March
2. Ride a 10 mile time trial at 23.5 mph average by the end of March
3. Increase my long run to 15 miles by the end of April
4. Run 16:20 for the 5K or 33:40 for the 10K on the track by the end of April
In my week off I was also able to come home earlier to spend more time with my wife Jen and daughter Payton. As you can see I enjoyed pushing Payton around on the car she got for Christmas and Jen, Payton, and I were able to watch the Superbowl Halftime with our 3D glasses...what fun! I'm looking forward to resuming training this week. I'll be starting over with lots of drills in the pool in improve my technique and will start building my mileage running to 65 a week by April and my cycling mileage to 140 a week by the end of April. I'll be running a couple road races and some collegiate track meets unattached in stay sharp and monitor my improvments in fitness. DREAM BIG!