As of Saturday only 9 weeks remain until my final race of the year which also has been the race I've looked forward to peaking at during the 2013 race season. That race is the Beach 2 Battleship Ironman distance race in Wilmington, North Carolina on October 26th. I spent this past week getting recovered from my first and only 1/2 Ironman distance race of the year. I wanted to make sure I took the week easy and let myself enjoy some of the foods I will now put on the shelf until October 27th. I was pretty sore on Monday and Tuesday. Those two days I swam and biked easy. Mostly my calves and groin muscles were really tight. I started feeling better on Tuesday evening and had a nice tempo run with our high school team on Wednesday. Saturday I rode 53 miles. I attended class at Barre563 on Thursday and Sunday. I will continue to attend classes twice weekly until my race in 9 weeks. I'm so excited about the strength and flexibility I've gained from these classes and know it will put me in a good spot when race day arrives. Now that the easy rest week is complete I will begin a good 7 week stretch with the biggest emphasis being on my running. My goal is to build my run mileage to 60-65 miles a week over the next 5 weeks. I will stay in that 60 mile range through week 7 when I will begin to cut back. On the bike my emphasis will be on interval training with a weekly long ride thrown in the mix. I plan to only ride 4-5 times a week during this training schedule. For swimming I will only swim three times a week until about 3 weeks before the race when I will begin to increase the number of days I'm getting in the water. I will continue getting an open water long swim for as long as the water stays bearable. Right now due to our warm temperatures the water is too warm so I'll stay in the pool until we get some cooler weather which hopefully will be by next week. This race is known for a notoriously fast swim because they swim it with the current in a bay of the ocean. I have heard rumors that the tide won't be near as much to our advantage this year and swim times may be even slower than they were in 2011 when they only cut about 5 minutes off the average swimmer's Ironman distance swim time. Last year they were about 15 minutes faster. I was banking on a strong current so that I could get by with less time in the pool. Whether we have the big current or a small one I will still not put in the pool time I was a year ago. Things are much busier than they used to be for me with the kids getting older and involved in more things. It's hard for me to believe my daughter is in Kindergarten!
I've never done this race so I can't get real specific on my goals. I know the bike is flat but I heard there are sections where speeds are pretty low when crossing over a bridge with a rough road surface. I've heard there are other spots on the roads where the surface is not real fast. Bike times from last year were not very fast so there must be something because the course is almost entirely at sea level. I would guess it can get windy near the ocean. I have a goal of breaking 9 hours for the race. I'd also like to run a new Ironman PR for the marathon which would mean sub 3 hours 10 minutes. If I can do those things I should be somewhere near the front of the race. I've learned that anything can happen so I'm not putting a big goal out there for overall place. It would be a bonus if I could bring some money home for iHope. Speaking of iHope, I owe a HUGE thanks to Erik and Monica Belby, Phil Pancrazio, and Barre563 for generous contributions to the foundation this week. Barre563 has become the 9th local business to support the iHope Foundation. If you would like to give Barre563 a try they offer new clients a chance to check it out with a 15 day unlimited trial for only $20.00. Find that deal and get to know more about Barre563 at www.barre563.com If you'd like to help with the iHope mission of providing low-income students who display outstanding character and work traits with technology click here and you can make a tax deductible contribution. A contribution of ANY amount is greatly appreciated. We are looking forward to providing more iHope gifts to students this year. We believe that the gift of an iPad for these students can potentially be life-changing by giving them a resource to help with school and help bring them hope to see an educational future beyond high school. All of the students presented with an iHope gift are given a letter encouraging them to one day pay it forward by making a positive difference for others in their community. Thanks for reading! DREAM BIG!!