Tuesday, April 28, 2015

2 months until Challenge AC!!

While out for my run today I realized we are exactly 2 months until I will be toeing the line for my 8th Ironman.  Yesterday also marked 5 years since I had my left Achilles tendon operated on by Dr. Tuvi Mendel from Orthopaedic Specialists.  I am so thankful I decided to have this procedure done by Dr. Mendel.  My Achilles had given me problems off and on for nearly 8 years dating all the way back to my collegiate running.  It had gotten so chronically bad that I could no longer bike or run.  Since the 4 month recovery from the surgery I have not missed a day of training due to Achilles pain.  I have completed 7 Ironman events and logged thousands of miles biking and running.  I am SO thankful for good health!!

The past 2 weeks have been very solid training weeks.  I'm into a great routine of hard days on Tuesdays and Thursdays with long workouts on the weekend and long recovery (easy training) days Monday, Wednesdays, and Fridays.  I'm feeling more fit each week.  I've been very diligent about my nutrition paying attention to how I'm fueling based on the daily workout schedule and I feel that has left me feeling extremely strong on my hard days and recovering quickly on my easy days.  I try to fuel with more carbs on my hard days, especially early in the day and through lunch.  Following my hard workouts and on my easy days my protein consumption is much higher and my carb intake is reduced.  I'm going to get my body fat % tested at Kaminski Pain and Performance Care next Monday and then will retest after my 6 week block of Ironman training that begins on Monday.  Not a lot changes in my training Monday-Friday during the 6 week block.  The big change is on the my long workouts each weekend.  I'll try to get at least 4 rides of 100-120 miles during that time with much of each ride at my Ironman goal wattage for Challenge AC.  On the other weekend day I will run long between 17 and 23 miles. 

For the past 2 weeks I biked 225 and 247 miles, ran 52 and 41 miles, and swam 5,300 and 8,700 yards.  This Friday will be my first lake swim of the year and I'm excited to be back in my Xterra wetsuit.  The last 2 weekends I have raced a 5k.  2 weekends ago I raced a VERY hilly 5k in Davenport and ran 17:00.  This past weekend I won a race in Rock Island in 16:52.  It was cold, raining, and VERY windy.  I earned $150.00 for the iHope Foundation for winning that race.  I don't run many races all out with a busy triathlon schedule but I don't have any early season triathlons or duathlons to work through the initial race soreness and my first race is only 8 days before my Ironman at Challenge AC so I'd like to use these road races to get over that initial soreness so I can recover quickly from the QC Triathlon on June 20th to be prepared for Challenge AC.  Speaking of the iHope Foundation we have received 3 more VERY generous corporate sponsorships.  The first was from First Central State Bank.  They have been a generous supporter for the past 3 years and renewed at a Silver level again!!  The next was a new supporter at a Gold level, Greenwood Cleaning Systems.  I'm very excited about having Greenwood Cleaning Systems on my jersey in 2015!!  The latest was from the Pleasant Valley Girls Basketball program!!  I'm VERY proud to be part of this program in my off-season coaching our 9th grade girls team and I was very humbled by their support of the iHope Foundation.  If you'd like to help out with the foundation to provide iPads and scholarship money to low-income students in our community who display outstanding character and work traits you can click either the link to donate to the iPads or the Scholarships above on my home page. 


This week's off to a GREAT start.  Thursday I'm going to run the Elite Mile with our junior high kids.  All boys who ran under 6:00 in the fall and all girls under 6:30 were invited to run a mile in a competitive heat at 2:45 at our junior high track.  Parents and students are coming out to watch and the PE department invited me to run it also.  I haven't run an all out mile for a LONG time and I'm excited to see where I'm at.  I'm hoping to be somewhere between 4:45 and 4:50 based on my current workouts.  I'm not sure what the time will be but I am SURE that it is going to hurt.  I'm looking forward to that.  This past week a student in my class asked me what made me want to do an Ironman.  I responded, "Because it's hard."  He asked why I would want to do something that is hard.  My response was, "When you complete the greatest challenges you get the greatest satisfaction."  Although I've had more success at the 1/2 Ironman distance I think the incredible challenge of Ironman is what continues to draw me back hoping for more.  I know my best races have not happened and I'm continually looking for that greater satisfaction from conquering that race distance and going under 9 hours.  DREAMING BIG that 2 months from today will be the day!

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