On Sun evening I received an email from Karel...
First sentence, 11 weeks until IMWI
Next part of the email included dates for 3 weeks of build and 1 week recovery.
The next part, 3 more weeks of build, 1 week recovery.
Week 9 - last hard week
Week 10 and 11 - taper
9/12/10 IRONMAN WISCONSIN
So far, so good. Feeling great, no signs of "past injury" and feeling strong. Actually, stronger than ever before.
Wouldn't you agree with me that the human body is amazing. I have always loved the body and the amazing things that it allows us to do on a daily basis but for much of my life, I really took for granted how sensitive the body is to every-day stress and daily habits.
Growing up, I was always active with swim team. When I went to college at Transylvania University in my hometown of Lexington, KY. I majored in Exercise Science. I was president of the Exercise Science club, I was a personal trainer at the YMCA (in the summer) and taught spin classes and personal trained YMCA members. I also taught a few core classes at my school and on the side, I was a student and a competitive college swimmer. I ran cross country my senior year of college because I wanted to try something new and see what it was like to "warm-up a mile". Running a mile to warm-up, always seemed crazy to me.
When I graduated, I moved to Florida (Davie) for graduate school at FAU. My Master program took 1 1/2 years and from Sept 2004 until Dec 2005 I was one stressed out grad student....training for my first marathon and amazed by this thing on TV called the Ironman.
Throughout graduate school, I fell even more in love with the Physiology of the body during Exercise. I had always wanted to be a Strength and Conditioning Coach for professional sport teams but as I neared the end of my intense graduate program, I realized that my passion lied in nutrition as it relates to exercise. Although I need to brush up on my information from my cardio, respiratory and exercise physiology courses, I still find myself using all of the information in my classes to my own training, as well as to my athletes. Although it took a good number of years, I realized that the body loves to be trained and WILL adapt but the process is not quick and can not be rushed.
I find it outstanding that the human body can allow us to run 26.2 miles or even cover 140.3 miles. I find it crazy that the heart can beat so fast for a mile or even more, for 5 hours. It's amazing that the body can lift heavy weight and still get stronger and I love it that the body works harder and becomes more efficient with the right nutrition (and timing of nutrition).
On the flip side, it is sad but still not surprising that if we don't take care of our body or listen to our body, it can rebel. We have all witness or hear of someone losing his/her life in a blink of an eye, without any warning. We know that overweight people can be extremely healthy and lean people can be extremely weak and unhealthy. We have seen people reach personal goals without any training and we have all experienced the up and downs of training for an event and risking injury or fatigue as well as reaching personal goals.
Finding the balance of being a competitive athlete and lover-of-exercise has not been easy. Right now, I feel as if I am in a good place. Still loving the effects of pushing my body but at the same time, not overdoing it with junk-miles or wasteless training. I have remained focused on stretching, strength training and rest/recovery as well as having a purpose for every training session...even if that means playing in the water or taking Campy for an hour walk.
The body can adapt to change, but we must be patient. However, teaching the body to adapt can be a fun process. Whether you are trying to lose weight to reach a realistic and maintainable weight goal, wanting to participate in a sprint or long distance event or wanting to meet a personal racing goal, the process of training of the body is slow but if you do it correctly, you will see progress and the rewards will be well-received.
Weekly training re-cap:
Mon - OFF. I had to do a drug screening for Hospice (as part of my community rotation which starts on the week of the 12th!!!) so I did it first thing in the morning because I knew the day was going to be a busy one. After an hour wait and a 5 sec test, I was done. Karel told me that he was going to the Y for light plyo's, core and a swim so I told him I would join him for a swim in the outdoor YMCA pool. What a relaxing swim. I planned to do nothing but I can't pass an opportunity to swim an easy 1000. Karel swam his first ever 500!
Tues - Under/Over intervals...OUCH!
Well, what started to be a great ride turned into a LONG ride. I must have moved my valve as I was pumping up my tubulars because around mile 8 I noticed that my tire was getting a little low in air. My good friend Katrine lived a mile from where I was at so I called her up and she saved the day! Her hubby was home and let me use their bike pump (didn't want to waste a CO2) so that I could get home. After an hour ride and around 18 miles, I decided to finish my workout on the trainer.
Main set under/over's:
2x's: 4 min below LT watts 170, 1 min above LT watts (I held around 160-165 watts below and around 180-198 above..the above HURT!!!). My focus is on a higher cadence so I was really aware of my cadence for both the under and over.
10 min easy spin
Repeat 2 more times!!!
I didn't get the same power on the last round as the first, but I was giving my best effort and felt really great with my workout. Tired and pooped but that was one quality 2-hr bike ride (despite the first 18 miles and having a leaking tire).
I decided to pass on the post-ride run because my 2 hr workout took about 3 hrs because of my tire and getting myself ready to bike inside.
50 min (5 min walk warm-up, then 10 min jog)
6.3 mile tempo run:
Main set 5x's: 2 min @ 7.8 mph, 1 min @ 8.2mph, 2 min @ 7.5 (all 1% incline)
Swim 4100 yrds:
Main set 2x's (500 pace, 5 x 100's hard)
8 x 50's on 50 sec hard
Strength: light weights, core, hip and back work
20 min Power Test on bike
1 hr warm-up w/ a few pick-ups
20 min all out (173 watts, 23 mph....around 4 watts higher than my last test 3 months ago!!!)
warm-down (w/ Karel after he finished his set)
Total: 2 hrs, 38 miles
Felt amazing!!! 3.3 miles, 24 min
LOTS of stretching and a yummy hemp/whey fruit smoothie after this workout
Yesterday I told Karel that I felt amazing and to NOT let me run, no matter how great I felt, today. Mission accomplished.
30 min strength w/ Karel at the Y (at my parents) w/ emphasis on upper body and core/back.
2000 yrd swim (Karel went to run some errands) - 2 x 1000's (swim, pull by 1000) just zoning out and loving outdoor swimming in the rain.