Saturday, September 28, 2013

A New Direction

I've been tossing the idea of an Ironman around for a while, but haven't actually mentioned it a lot on here (more so on Twitter).  After my hundred mile bike ride a couple weeks ago, the idea has really solidified for me.  I can do it.  I want to do it.  I am going to do it.  Since my blog has been less about running recently anyway, I decided to really commit and CHANGE MY BLOG TITLE.  I like to live dangerously.

So yeah, I'm serious now.

JUST KIDDING!!  I didn't actually register for it.  I did consider it though.  Ultimately I decided to play it smart and have time to ramp up safely, given my ongoing IT band trouble.  Thank god for that, because if I was 100% healthy right now I probably would have pulled the trigger on that registration and I don't think that would have been that wise.  (On the other hand, if I hadn't had knee trouble I wouldn't be biking or swimming in the first place...)

So here's my current "big picture" plan:

  • Now: Skill and strength.  
  • 2014: Half Ironman (Steelhead 70.3 in August)
  • 2015: Full Ironman!!  (Wisconsin 140.6 in September) 
  • 2016: I have a thought on this but better not write it here because I'll probably change my mind anyway.   

It's a really zoomed out view.  :)

Here's a little more detail on the "now".  I'm continuing to lift regularly to build strength to help support my IT band/knee and help cushion against new injuries later, when my training volume increases.  Running has been improving.  I'm really focusing on my form while running.  Specifically, I'm trying to land my feet under my center of mass (no more overstriding!) and increase my cadence.  It seems to be helping.   I am up to a 7 mile long run and an 18 mile week.  That's huge, compared to where I've been recently. I'm in a swim class to work on my technique and increase my comfort level.  I'm biking twice a week, getting to know Robin a little better, but not really focusing on speed at all.  I plan to do some spinning classes over the winter.

Bike grease.  I don't really know how it got there.  Lifting the bike up onto the car I guess.  Yes, I'm flexing my quads for the photo.  Sue me.  
The swim class is really interesting.  I've never really done drills before.  At first I likened them to some kind of torture, a la water-boarding.  It seemed like each of them was some sort of ploy to get me to sink and/or suck water.  Use only one arm while breathing to the opposite side only??  Breathe every 7 strokes??  But, I'm getting the hang of it now. I've only been to one class and done one workout on my own so far, but already I can tell a difference in my breathing and my form.  I guess the drills work!  Plus it makes a pool workout so much more interesting than just swimming back and forth.  Below are some of the workouts the instructor wrote down for us.  I did the one on the bottom right today.  It's like learning a new language!!  I shall call it Swimmese.
The instructor is 22 but looks like she's 12.  She seems good though.  I just don't understand why she didn't type up the stinking workouts??  I'm going to have to transcribe them into my computer myself.  I guess maybe she did them while sitting in the lifeguard chair or something.  Whatever.

I meant to swim yesterday but got stuck in front of the TV instead and couldn't seem to pull myself away.  So today I did my 7 mile run (8am) then went straight to the gym, lifted for 45 minutes, did a 30 min abs class (10:30am), and then swam for 45 minutes.  Saturdays are awesome.  I love working out, and that's part of the reason I'm not worried about training for an Ironman.  I'm sure I'll have weeks where I feel burned out, but overall, I think I'll like it.  I like to go long, but not super intense.  A match made in heaven. :)  The only thing I'm worried about is my work schedule, since this 40 hrs/week day shift thing hasn't been ideal for my workouts.  Evenings might work better, so I might ask to go to that.  I would ask for 32 hrs/week in the 6 months leading up to the race, but apparently they haven't been approving those requests on my current unit.  We'll see.

I've been trolling the interwebs for everything from tattoos to hotels to coaching.  I booked a hotel for 2014 IM Wisconsin to go out and volunteer for it.  It's a great year to volunteer because I know 5 people doing the race that i can cheer for!  Perfect.

I saw the blue one on the left and loved it at first.  I like the blue coloring and shading on the M-dot, but then decided it was a little too cluttered for me.  I think I'll probably move the activity icons to the periphery, kind of like the one on the bottom right (the layout, not the design of the icons), and ditch the flowery squiggle things completely.  I also have to figure out a way to make the bike wheels NOT look like boobs.  I also might add a "140.6".  Okay how about this: Blue shady Mdot, swimmer on left shoulder, biker underneath,  runner on right shoulder, "140.6" across his chest.  Somebody artsy sketch it up for me.  :)  And tell me where on my body to put it!   
I actually read somewhere about someone who got the tattoo before they even did the Ironman, as a way to hold themselves accountable and make sure they actually did it!  Crazy!  I'm not that brave!  Especially since my track record for meeting goals recently isn't so hot.  We all know how that "13x13.1 in '13" thing went!  (Hint: I've been stuck at 5 since June).  

Oh, here are my two favorite running tunes right now, in case you needed some songspiration! 

One Republic : Counting Stars

Awolnation: Wake Up 
(You have to ride this one out to the chorus).  

Time to get some sleep.  Group bike ride tomorrow!


  1. I think if you take the hub out of the bike wheel or add spokes, and complete the circle, you'd lose the resemblance to breasts.

  2. I'm glad you figured out a creative title that covers everything. It's good to hear that the running has been going better, and it sounds like you're on a roll with swimming. If I can start putting good time in on the bike over the winter, maybe I'll consider a half Ironman. No real ambitions for it yet though. I'm curious to watch how it all comes together for you!

  3. Awesome! Volunteering is the way to go because you can sign up for it before it opens to the public. I am glad you are doing it. I used the plans from Gale Bernhardt's book Training Plans for Multisport Athletes for both half IMs and the full I did. I really recommend it. I can't wait to hear about your training.


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