It's been quite a while since I last posted. Challenge Atlantic City was a race I focused all my training around from February to June 28th and knowing that I wanted to race 1 more Ironman distance event in the fall I took 2 weeks completely off after that race. I find it difficult to carry good form from spring all the way until fall and still feel fresh on race day. I wanted to peak 2 different times this year, one in late June and one on October 17th for Beach 2 Battleship. While I planned only 2 weeks off the summer months with no school and 2 kids kind of spiraled out of control from a structured training standpoint. I managed to quickly put on 24 lbs. and my fitness went by the wayside. I started to doubt whether or not I could get back into the routine to race a solid Ironman by mid-October. I went through a period where my back was extremely sore and I had to cancel Pigman Long 1/2 Ironman distance in August. I had a blast with the family this summer taking a trip to Colorado, getting to Milwaukee with both kids and no Super Mom for 2 Cubs games, Adventureland, water parks...etc. It was great but training definitely took a back seat. I had to take a long look at this race and make a decision. I was 8 weeks out from the race and looking at the terrible shape I was in. I raced the Du State Duathlon and won the race on August 23rd. My biking power was great which I expected with fresh legs but my running was abysmal. I was able to earn $100.00 for the iHope Foundation for the race win. I have already planned that next year I will not be racing any Ironman distance events. My plan for 2016 is to race shorter and more often in an effort to maximize the money I can win for the iHope Foundation. I have missed training and racing with speed. Breaking 9 hours in an Ironman distance event has been a goal of mine for a long time. The Beach 2 Battleship course is extremely fast and it a venue where it is absolutely possible. My PR of 9 hrs. 4 minutes was set on that course in 2013. The more I considered where I was the more I realized I needed to give it one more go.
I began a 6 week block of training on Monday, August 24th after weighing in at 176. Being back to school has really helped give me structure. I am in my 3rd week of the 6 week block and things are going extremely well. My first weekend I did a long ride of 100 miles and followed it up with a 15.5 mile run the next day. My week 1 totals were 3 swims, 230 bike miles, and 50 run miles. Last week was brutally hot with heat index's near 100 degrees almost daily. I swam 3x, biked 210 miles, and ran 52 with a long ride of 80 miles and a long run of 18. I have dropped weight much quicker than I anticipated with a renewed focus on nutrition. As of this morning I was 163 lbs. My current goals are 50 miles running each week on 5 days of running, at least 220 miles of biking each week on 5 days of riding, and 3 swims per week which will bump to 4 in the next 2 weeks. Running has already gotten a ton easier. Each day the thoughts of a sub-9 are on my mind. I realize if I put in the work through the next 3.5 weeks of this block I will be prepared to execute on race day.
I continue to be inspired by receiving support for the iHope Foundation. Recently we have added Hawkeye Paving to our growing list of foundation supporters. Hawkeye Paving generously sponsored my season by making a contribution at the Platinum level. This is the 7th Platinum level supporter to donate $1,000.00 or more to the foundation this year alone. In total the foundation has received just over $51,000.00 since creation. That is helping us reach a lofty goal of providing 3 students each year with an iPad while in junior high and a $1,000.00 scholarship upon graduation. Hawkeye Paving was the 20th iHope corporate sponsor this year which was a BIG goal I set out to achieve. I'm extremely thankful of all the corporate supporters!! I'm hoping to do my part by bringing home a check from Beach 2 Battleship to end my season. The swim at that race is with a strong ocean current most years so it tends to be very fast. The bike course is flat and fast and the run is 2 loops with a lot of shade and some rolling terrain. I'm using each day to prepare my best for a sub-9 race. If you'd like to support the iHope Foundation you can do so donating through one of the 2 links above on my home page. One link is to donate to the iPad portion of the foundation and the other is to the scholarship portion. Thanks for reading. DREAM BIG!!