I have two posts to write - one is a weekend/week recap, and the other is all about MONDAY - one of the best days of the year so far. I'll write about that later because there are brilliant pictures to append with it (hint: the Fitness Journal/WC Velo crew got on the road early on Monday and rode the 1st stage of the Tour of California 4 hours before the pros did! IT ROCKED!!!).
After I posted last week, I decided to make Friday a rest day. It meant that in the end, I only logged 11 hours last week (should have logged 12), but I think it all worked out well. Saturday Jessica and I rode an easy 80 miles through some of the most gorgeous parts of Sonoma County. We rode out west along Hwy 12 to Forestville, then back-tracked to Graton and from there went north out over Vine Hill to Trenton where we got onto River Road for a bit (going west again) and hooked up to Wohler Rd and finally onto Westside Road. Once on Westside, we basically did the Vineman bike route out to Windsor. Along the way we stopped in Geyserville at a great mini-mart where we refueled on a burrito and a popsicle. It was awesome. From Windsor we came back into Santa Rosa via Old Redwood Hwy, which on a Saturday wasn't too bad. I posted the route below. It really is such an amazing and GORGEOUS ride! I feel so lucky to live here!
The great thing about that ride was that we took it nice and slow and by the end, I felt great.
Sunday I squeezed in a run before heading out for dinner that evening. It was much colder than I expected it would be and I only had on knee-length tights and a running shirt. I could've used a pull-over as well, especially as it drew toward 5:00 p.m. Brrrr. Still, it was a really great run from my house out to Montgomery Drive and up to Summerfield to reach Howarth Park/Spring Lake, where I did a loop of Spring Lake and back home.* It ended up being about 8.5 miles and I ran for just under 1:10 - which put me at an 8:08 pace. The cool thing was that my heart rate average was still around 158, and I felt great. Legs were a little tired from the long ride, but I maintained a strong, steady pace without feeling like I was putting forth too much effort. The end was tough because it was cold and my stomach was somewhat upset from something I had eaten earlier (not sure what it was, but Costco sushi may have been the culprit. Blech.), but it was good to know I could run that well under so much discomfort!
*This amazing picture of Spring Lake was taken earlier this month by a Flickr user, Brian Dean Bollman. He's got a whole set of Spring Lake photos. Great pictures, Brian!
All in all, good stuff.
I also managed to get my training plan set out in front of me for the remaining 6 (now just about 5) weeks before the big race. I've got a couple more weeks of Build 2, then I go into two weeks of Peak phase, with Race week after that. I made a table up for it all, but I have a couple more things to fill in. I'll post it here in a couple of days.
Some other notable things happened this week:
1) I was telling Pat about the possibility of overtraining in regard to the heart rate thing. His response: "Have you considered the idea that maybe you've just really adapted well with your training and that your body is ready to push a higher pace?"
Oh. Well...hmmm...yeah...I suppose that's a possibility. Through Base and Build I, I honestly had just been so focused on not trying to push the pace I thought I was supposed to be running at and just paying attention to my heart rate that I didn't realize how well my body had taken to training the right way. I took my ego and threw it out the window, stepped on that treadmill and set it at a pace of 6.0 (10:00/mile) in the beginning when I would warm up, and my heart rate would be in the 150s. Now even at a 9:30 pace my heart rate doesn't go up past the high 140s. I really focused so hard on staying within myself that I didn't really notice how great all of this running has been for my speed.
So...the only way to get better is to push through that comfort zone. Wednesday I had my hard run scheduled and I decided to see where I'm really at. I warmed up for about 8 minutes, and began to turn up the pace. 9:00/mile...8:40/mile...8:20/mile...8:08/mile...7:52...7:44...7:30. Finally, at a 7:30/mile pace, I settled in to a near-lactate threshold heart rate (upper 160s) and held it there for a good 30 minutes. Cooled down at about an 8:20-8:40/mile pace.
I write about this because I'm genuinely amazed at how far my running has come. Last year (and years before), I'd try to push the pace at what I thought I was 'supposed' to do without regard for my poor heart and a 7:30 pace meant completely anerobic levels in the 180s. Not sustainable.
My big resolve, as I wrote about a couple of months ago, was to work with my main limiter, which was my running. I wanted to train right and I wanted to really make an improvement there. I wrote down those goals and now it really looks like I'm on track to meet them. I love how that works!
2) I began teaching spinning at the Santa Rosa YMCA!! My official start was to be next Monday, but one of the instructors was ill and called me Wednesday to see if I would sub for her on Thursday morning at 6 a.m. I happily accepted and put my class together Wednesday night. It was a small turnout - only about 7 people were there, so my goal now is to get people excited about spinning, talk to other people and boost those numbers. It was a nice group and I'm looking forward to getting to know them.
I had no idea when I did that Embarcadero Y Treasure Island Swim 2 years ago that I would become such a huge fan of the YMCA. It's an amazing community of people and I really support their mission. Those Village People really knew what they were talking about! ;)
3) The GREAT NEWS!
I almost forgot - I was selected to be part of Team Aquaphor again!! The link is to the team page from last year; I don't think they've got this year's website up yet. I'm really excited because I think Aquaphor is an outstanding product (no really, I do), for the general population and especially for cancer patients undergoing radiation and incur some burn to their skin. It's a really soothing product and I totally stand by it. I'd like to do more to represent the team this year, especially since I won't be part of Lombardi this year (I decided to leave due to distance).
So that's the week recap (save for Monday - that requires its own post).
What's on the agenda for the weekend?
Saturday: Easy bike, longish run
Sunday: Sprint Triathlon in Davis, CA!! 750 yd swim (in a pool), 18 mile bike, 4 mile run. Goal: 1:30 and KICK SOME BUTT!!!!
Have a great weekend!!