Brrrrr - weekend training

It's always fun for us to have a friend in town. We absolutely love Greenville and it's special to be able to show off our beautiful area to an out-of-towner.
But when a friend has a similar love for endurance training, it makes for a jam-packed few days, filled with lots of miles, laughs and food.

Not complaining. 

After our friend Lauren and her doggy Jordan arrived from Jacksonville, FL, I made a delicious dinner of lentil soup, roasted potatoes, mixed greens with tzatziki sauce, corn on the cob and protein (tempeh for me, chicken for Karel and Lauren). Dinner was amazing.

Then it was off to watch the documentary Bikes vs Cars at the movie theater, hosted by Bike Walk Greenville

After moving from Jacksonville, FL to Greenville, SC, I can honestly say that I love where we live now....in a very bike friendly community.

 However, after watching the Bikes vs Cars documentary, although it is evident that we are lucky to have so many cycling options as to where to ride (and not to mention the fact that cyclist are respected by cars when asked to share the road), it is acknowledged that we can continue to improve the safety, road conditions, accessibility and awareness for cycling in and around the Greenville community. 

With a large crowd in attendance for the viewing of the documentary (200+ individuals), it is obvious that many people in the community are invested in building an even more bike friendly community.
I'm incredibly thankful for the Bike Walk team for all that they are doing for Greenville, all in an effort to make Greenville a safer, more active and more environmentally healthy community.

After a good night sleep on Thursday evening, it was time to start the training fun with Lauren. 

I woke up at my normal time, 5:45am to get started on some work for the day while waking up my system with water, a cup of coffee and a waffle w/ PB, honey and banana slices (this has been my typical pre-training snack lately).
Around 7;15am, we drove to Furman for our morning swim, which totaled around 4000 yards.

6 x 100's 85% w/ 3-5 sec rest
400 snorkel, band, buoy, 1 min rest
8 x 75's at 85%, 3-5 sec rest
400 snorkel at 80%, 1 min rest
12 x 50's 90% w/ 3-5 sec rest
500 best effort

Whew. That was exhausting. Time to refuel!

I made scrambled eggs with mixed greens and a little cheese and served that with fresh bread (with an assortment of toppings - jam, honey, butter, nut butter). We also had orange and banana slices.

After letting our breakfast digest for 2 hours, we were about to change into our cycling clothes in anticipation for an outside 2 hour ride. 

Well, mother nature had other plans for us. 


So we changed the plans and rode inside for a mid-day trainer ride in our "pain cave."
MS: 4 x 12 minutes w/ 3 min EZ in between
(3 min Z2, 90+ rpm, 1 min Z3+, 65 or less rpm. x 3)

After the trainer ride, it was time to eat....again.
I had a quick glass of milk while preparing lunch and before showering.

I made a large salad with side toppings: chicken, cottage cheese, jasmine rice, quinoa, cheese.
Although a salad wouldn't be my go-to recovery meal, it was nearing 2pm and I was in need of some veggies. Plus, since we went into the bike trainer workout well-fueled, I wasn't too worried about our bodies being completely drained after a 2 hour trainer workout as the workout had a strength endurance focus and it wasn't intense or exhausting.

I was able to get some work done in the afternoon for a few hours and made a quick stop at the grocery store for some food for the weekend. I knew that we would eat the best if food was ready for after our weekend workouts.

We headed to downtown Greenville on Friday evening for dinner and yummed over a delicious dinner from Chicora Alley.
I had the tofu burger which is a marinated slab of tofu on a warm pita, spread with bean hummus.
So good! 

Although the weather was very chilly on Saturday, we were determined to enjoy the Greenville mountains with Lauren. We waited until it warmed-up to the 30's to start the ride so that meant not riding until around 11:30am. 

After waking up without an alarm, around 7am, we felt well rested for an exciting day of exploring.
After a small pre-workout snack (1/2 banana w/ a little smear of PB), we headed out around 8:30am for a 4-mile very easy, conversational pace run around our neighborhood (which is very hilly).
After the run, it was time for a pre-workout meal of eggs, fresh bread and fruit (and some toppings like PB, cheese, butter, etc.). Although the meal was larger than what I would have normally before a long ride, it was very needed considering that we would be out on our bikes all afternoon and our next meal wouldn't come until the evening. 

After letting the meal digest for 2 hours, we bundled up for our ride in 34 degree temps. The sun was shinning which made it much more tolerable. 

We said a quick hello to Mr. Lama and then it was off to Caesar's Head.

Although climbing for 6.5 miles seemed like a great idea while it was happening (as we really warmed up), after taking pictures, we got really cold. Like really, really, really cold.

After a very painfully cold descend, it took a good 20 more minutes of riding to get slightly warm(ish) again.

90 minutes later, we were home after almost 4 hours of riding.

But as cold as we were descending, the views on top of Caesar's head were worth it.
Especially when we could look at our pictures when were nice and warm, sitting by our fire, at home. 

Thanks Clif Bar for fueling our workouts. The mint chocolate bar along with a few Clif gels and water were amazing throughout my ride! 

After the ride, we stuck with our plan to order out at one of my favorite restaurants in Traveler's Rest - Upcounty Provisions. We invited our good friends, Meredith and Lukas over (and their kiddos) and we all enjoyed dinner together (and my mom came over too). It was nice to yum with everyone and not have to go out to eat as we were still warming up from our ride.

Campy was clearly exhausted.
Or drunk.

After an early bedtime, we once again woke-up without an alarm and made it to 7:15am for a great night of sleep. 

After a pre-workout snack of waffle, w/ PB, honey and banana, water and coffee for me, we headed out for a "long" run around 8:45am.

We ran one of my favorite running loops which had no shortage of hills and climbs and great views. It was a great run to share with Lauren and Karel. 9.37 miles later we were home...and with not a peek of the sun, we were still a bit chilly as the temps out were around 23-27 degrees. 

After we came back, Karel was done for the morning and Lauren and I jumped on the trainer for one last bike workout. I only rode an hour and Lauren rode 1 hr and 45 minutes.

Bike trainer workout: 
15 min EZ
Pre set; 4 x 5 minutes Z1/Z2, highest sustainable cadence (~104-108 for me)
4 min EZ
MS: 6xs:
1.5 min build cadence and power from Z2-Z3, 80-100 rpm cadence.
30 sec EZ
Cool down

After our run/bike workout, it was time to eat. Karel made us crepes while we were on the bike trainers so it was nice to walk down to a nice smelling kitchen.
I had Greek yogurt and fruit w/ PB and cacao nib slathered crepes (with cinnamon).

After chillaxing a bit on the couch (while doing work on the computer) and watched Campy destroy his new Valentine's gift (nothing says I love you like ripping the arms and tail off a new bear), around 3pm we headed to the Furman pool for one last workout for the day. 

Swim workout: (2500 yards total)
2 x 25's
3 x 50's
4 x 75's
5 x 100's
4 x 75's
3 x 50's
2 x 25's
(all with buoy and paddle, 70-75% effort)

As much as I was not excited to swim, it felt good to move through the water with this recovery workout.

After the swim, it was time for grilled pizza. Seeing that I had this meal planned since Friday, I was so excited to get this pizza in my belly, all weekend long!

A big thank you to Karel for standing outside in the freezing cold to grill the homemade individual pizzas. 

Although there wasn't a lot of time to rest and relax, we did watch the Marathon Olympic Trials (DVR'd on Sat) and the indoor track championship on Sun (DVR'd).

As if that wasn't enough training over three days, we managed to have good energy for a 3800 yard swim this morning:

4 x 50's  kick with fins
200 swim with fins
4 x 50's buoy
300 buoy/snorkel/paddles
4 x 50's buoy/paddles
400 negative split
4 x 50's buoy recovery

It's a beautiful thing when motivation can stay high with training partners.
Anytime that you ask/want your body to train a lot, train intensely or train at different hours of the day (or two-a-days) you can not neglect proper hydration and fueling (before/during/after workouts).
You can be extremely dedicated to training but if you don't fuel, your body will not reach its full potential.

To think about this another way, wouldn't you like to receive favorable athletic results by doing less work?

Just because a workout is on your schedule, don't assume that just because you check it off your plan for the day that you will gain anything from it.
Proper fueling, hydrating, mobility, sleep, recovery and daily nutrition are essential to maximizing your fitness while helping to keep your body in great health.