6/17/18

2 weeks out from Ironman Austria!


Whew. It was a HOT weekend of training.

This past week started off a little light with cycling and running but my swimming regime didn't change. I swam five times this week and it felt good to keep my feel of the water with a few moderate distance swims, a long swim and a few easy swims. I had an interval run on Wednesday that had me feeling so-so - not bad, not great but still a good run on legs that were still repairing from the damage that occurred from the last week/weekend of training. Thursday morning was a solid longer brick workout and Friday was a long, tough swim. I sprinkled in a few EZ rides on the road bike which was nice to loosen out the legs. I've been most pleased with my running fitness and being able to hold good form when tired but Karel keeps telling me that I am stronger, faster and fitter than ever before - which is boosting my confidence going into Ironman Austria. I've had a sign in my workout room since the winter reading "9:57 and 3:35" as my two stretch goals for Ironman Austria. 9:57 being my goal of breaking 10-hours and 3:35 being my marathon goal off the bike.

Physically, I do feel like I am in the best shape of my life and I am constantly reminding myself of how far I have come this season and the work I put in for this race. It's been a fun journey with no health-related setbacks which is always my main goal when training for an Ironman. No sickness, no injuries and no feelings of burnout. Every week was new and different for me and it was a neat experience to feel stronger with every week of training (some weeks were a bit plateau-ish but that's to be expected).

With only six days until we leave for Europe, it's time to get my mind into a good place as I not only have the stress of traveling to deal with but also the mental place I need to put myself in to embrace the hurt that comes with Ironman distance racing. I've done the physical work but now is to create an optimal level of mental readiness for race day, such as being processed-driven, being ok with weather changes, working my mind with my body and overcoming any setbacks that come my way, while remaining present and grateful. With this being my 13th Ironman (10th for Karel), I have several race day mantras that I often rely on to help me when I get to the dark, uncomfortable moments when racing for 140.6 miles. At this point, less is more and I am not over-thinking any part of my race day strategy (ex. gear, pacing, nutrition) for I have prepared to the best of my ability and matched several long training sessions to similar scenarios for race day. The unique part of my race day experience is my decision to race against the clock instead of against the competition for a Kona slot or podium placement. I won't get too stuck on times as I will need to stay in the moment and take care of the present instead of chasing an outcome but it's nice to have that carrot hanging in front of me when times get tough (which they will on race day). While I do want to get on the podium again at Ironman Austria (only top 3 AG makes the podium), I know the competition on race day will help me bring out the best in me. I've thought about this race for the past two years and I love, love, love this race venue and everything about Ironman Austria. I'm so excited to share the course with Karel and to have two of our athletes (Natalie and Justine) joining us for this incredible race day experience.

Here's the weekend recap:

Friday AM: 5300 yard swim

700 warm-up
400 with fins as (50 kick, 25 backstroke, 25 free)
6 x 200's w/ fins and snorkel (single arm drill)

MS:
100 w/ paddles, smooth
200 swim 80%
200 w/ paddles, smooth
400 swim 85%
200 w/ paddles, smooth
600 swim 90%
200 w/ paddles, smooth
400 swim 85%
200 w/ paddles, smooth
200 swim 80%
200 w/ paddles, smooth
All with 15 sec rest

Post Set:
600 buoy/snorkel
My speedy swimming partner Kristin was unable to join me so I had to do this one solo.

Friday PM: 
~80-minute EZ spin on the road bike w/ Karel, mostly on the Swamp Rabbit Trail

Saturday AM: 3 hour bike (59.9 miles) + 40-50 min run
(
We did our workout at Donaldson to help us focus on the execution of the main set)

WU: ~90 minutes on the "country loop" - rolling hills
Pre set: 2 x 6 minutes build to strong w/ 4 minutes EZ (on the perimeter loop, just over 7 miles)
MS: 2 x 20 minutes as (15 min sustainable strong, 5 min build to very strong) w/ 10 min steady effort still pushing (SESP) recovery
CD: EZ spin

Brick run: (50 minutes for Karel, 41 minutes for me)
WU: 4 minute build to IM effort, 2 min form focused running (we call this fatigue based running form, FBRF)
MS:
3 min moderate strong
2 min FBRF
3 min strong
2 min FBRF
3 min very strong
2 min FBRF
3 min strong
2 min FBRF
3 min moderate strong
2 min FBRF
10 min Ironman effort
(Karel finished with 10 min EZ running)

Sunday AM: Marni: 63 minute form focused running w/ a 30 second walk after each mile.
Karel: ~90 spin on his Ventum tri bike

Sunday PM: Swim

600 warm-up
Pre set:
12 x 50's kick with fins
MS: 4x's
200 steady w/ paddles and snorkel
100 build to strong
50 fast
All with 10 sec rest