Monday, September 5, 2011

Fourth Week Triathlon Training

I am entering the final week of training for my first triathlon ever - sprint distance.   This past fourth week of training marked the beginning of a taper into the event.  I fit in a lot of training on a road trip to Lake Superior.  After a successful 500 yd open water swim I can now say I will be able to complete the swim portion of the course.  Emphasis was placed on rest, running, and swimming.  I did not get the bike out once but did go kayaking.  Run mileage was the highest it has been all year.  This final week I will get plenty of rest, good nutrition, and keep workout intensity low.  Activity for the week of 28 Aug 2011 is shown below:

Sunday:  Rest
Monday:  ½ hour swim 500 yd, 1 ½ hour paddling
Tuesday:  3 hour trail/road run, 16 miles
Wednesday:  Rest 
Thursday:  ½ hour swim 750 yd, 1+ hour 8 mile run hills, speedwork
Friday:  Rest
Saturday:  1+ hour 7 mile run intervals


Swim:  1 hour, 1250 yd + drills
Bike:  none
Run:  5 hours, 31 miles      

When I first began training the swim gave me the most doubt but I feel I have diligently prepared for it.  Race day will certainly have some nuances, such as contact swimming, I could not duplicate in training but such is life.  When I was up camping on Lake Superior I successfully completed a continuous 500 yd open water swim in 11:26 using my new wetsuit.  Two days later I completed the same distance in a pool north of 13 minutes.  Swimming in a wetsuit is far easier.  Now if I can only get my goggles to stop fogging.

The upcoming week will include some recreational and low intensity rides.  Biking is one of my favorite recovery workouts.     

I didn’t have much of a plan for running this week other than to get in some quality intervals and take the long and tempo runs easy.  The long run turned into an unplanned 16 mile trail/road run with my wife at a very comfortable conversation pace.  We took it easy, stopped to take pictures, eat, and take in the scenery.  It was unhurried, simple, and fun.  Running should always be enjoyable and recreational runs are a good way to mix it up. 

My tempo run never materialized but something very different happened.  I got in an easy mile warm-up and then took off to see how fast I could get a mile in.  My time of 5:28 leaves me hungry to try this again and knock it down some.  I continued on taking it easy for a while and then hit the only triple switchback I know of in the area along Lake Michigan’s bluffs for 15 minutes of 100 ft hill repeats.  Once complete I hauled home recovering from the hills on the run and growing stronger each passing mile.  I had some intense focus on the way back as the sun faded away and kept thinking about a nice cool glass of water.   The day was very humid and my lungs were screaming when I finally made my way home.  I had hardly noticed the pain until it was all over.

This particular mile repeat workout is a great example of what going out too fast can do to your interval splits.  In my defense it was raining and I wanted to give my new water proof trail shoes a test drive.  What better way than going fast.  Sandwiched between a 3 mile warm up and 1 mile cool down and separated by a 2 minute rest interval were these splits:

5:30, 5:50, 6:09

1 comment:

  1. You are braver then me my friend! I know that sub 6 miles are in my legs but I always shy away from trying because I know that it will be a desperate recovery for both the lungs and the legs. It has slipped my mind what tri you are doing, could you refresh my memory?

    Looks like you did get in some solid workouts, and are on track for a great performance.