With the end of my 15th week of training I am closing the 1st training cycle of the year. I have not had a day off training since November 21 and I will be taking the next 3-4 days off completely to let my body rest and adapt to this first phase of training. Tomorrow morning Jen will be induced with our second child. I can't wait to meet Owen and have the new addition to the team! I'll post some pictures as soon as possible. I'm excited to watch Jen begin training herself after she recovers from the pregnancy and birth. I'm betting she gets back into great shape quickly and you'll see her racing soon.
This week was much less training than last week as planned. I set out my training goals every week and in most cases I surpass the goals I lay out. This week I wanted to make sure I did not do any extra since I was coming off a huge week last week. It was important for me to let my body recover from the big week. For the week my total training time was 19.75 hours. I biked 120 miles, ran 46 miles, and swam 12,000 yards. In addition to those totals I lifted weights three times, did plyometrices twice, lunges three times, speed drills and strides three times, core work nine times, and added in a jump rope session. Since the volume was down I had some good quality this week. I did a 6 mile progressive tempo run on Wednesday in which my mile splits were 6:05, 5:57, 5:52, 5:47, 5:39, and 5:24 to close it out for a total time of 34:47. On Friday I did a very tough hill workout with 8x 400 meter hills and 4x 200 meter hills. Sunday's long run was 14.5 miles in which I did 30 minutes in the middle at goal marathon pace (6:13). I was aiming to run that at 6:30 pace but my first 25 minutes easy ended up being 6:30 pace so I dropped down a bit.
Coming to the end of my first long training block gives me a chance to reflect on where I'm at in terms of hitting my season goals. I had hoped to increase my bike mileage over last year by 10% and I'm currently way ahead of that goal up 74% over last year's bike mileage through 15 weeks. I guess you could say I've really bonded with my trainer this winter. In the water I'm up 35% compared to last year. Running I'm down 12% mostly due to the achilles injury I had for 6 weeks. Despite less miles I'm running much faster than I was a year ago. I stepped on the scale on Monday and weighed in at 153 which is my lowest to date over the past 8 years and 11 lbs. less than what I raced at last year. One of my goals was to reduce my body fat percentage from 13 last year to 9 this year. I believe I'm getting close to that. Another big goal was to increase my leg weights in the weight room by 20%. I've already surpassed that goal on 6 of my 8 leg lifts. I'm proud of the fact that over 15 weeks I didn't miss a single session in the weight room. I have lifted 45 times (3 times every week). Another goal was to "eat to perform" as opposed to "performing to eat". I have eaten more healthy over the past 15 weeks than ever in my life and that is probably reflected in my weight. I'm stronger than I have ever been while losing weight. Another goal was to build my long run to 2 hours by May. I'm only 20 minutes away from that after getting off to a slow start running with the injury. I'm well on my way to meeting that goal. Another goal was to work on swimming more efficiently. By learning to breath on both sides and get my elbow high out of the water I feel like I'm making good progress towards that goal. Another goal was to run a 5k under 16:00 by the end of March. I'll be running in a track meet at Augustana in late March and I feel I'm in shape to run well under 16:00. My last goal was to believe I belong in the race with the professionals in the 1/2 Ironman distance. Through the training I've done and the workouts I've completed in these first 15 weeks I couldn't be more confident in my abilities to perform well at the professional level. I know I'm a much different athlete than I was a year ago. It was a great move to go to Austin last October to earn my pro license before the year ended because it forces me to think about the guys I'll be racing this summer. During nearly every workout I imagine myself on the same starting line as guys like Andy Potts, Matt Reed, Jordan Rapp, Craig Alexander, TJ Tollakson, and many others. I'm confident I belong on the same starting line and that I will be able to hold my own...as long as I can get through the swim without too much damage done. Thanks for following. DREAM BIG!