Monday, February 22, 2016

Training Log: 2/15 - 2/21 (Week 3)

This was a tough week.  My long run is up to a distance of six-and-a-half miles, my daughter Hannah and I did a session of Mossa Group Power with my wife on Saturday, and we had decent weather, so I got back on the bike this week as part of my commute.  
Swim, Bike, Run
That stuff was all good, but Group Power really wiped me out, leaving Sunday's long run a significant mental and emotional challenge.

I swam Monday and Saturday, with neither session involving particularly interesting or creative workouts.  I only went Monday because I had President's Day off.  That was nice, and it allowed me to get some yardage early in the week, but I wasn't looking to break any records in the pool this week.  That's just not where my focus has been.

Monday's workout is the only one that even might be worth writing up, and even then, it's debatable.

5 x 200 @ 2:50 aerobic pace
100 warm down

I did 1400 worth of easy 100s on Saturday and got out early.  No big deal.

I've been using the swims lately to make up for lost mileage on the bike, and this week was no different except that I had to "make up" in the other direction.  With three rides during the week, I cut back my swim yardage to keep my overall aerobic point total under 120.  I'll let the totals go higher later in the season, but given what I've done lately, 120 seemed a reasonable ceiling now.

Swimming Total: 2 x swims (2100, 1400); 35 pts

Decent week on the bike.  I won't say that I necessarily enjoyed it out there every minute, but the weather was a bit warmer, and as a result, I was able to ride my commute three times.  It was weird at first because it had been weeks since I'd been on the bike, but you know, it's like riding a bike.  I was stiff and slow on Wednesday, my first day out, but I managed.

Things improved over the week, and as I've said before, this training plan is a lot easier to manage when I can get in some cycling miles as part of my overall work week.

Cycling Total: 3 x commute rides (32.1 miles) 32.1 pts

I've been run-focused lately, and this week was no different.  I ran Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, with Sunday being my long run day.  Wednesday and Friday were both lunchtime runs from the office, both totalling about 2.5 miles.  Friday in particular was good because I started slow and picked it up to a light tempo pace, maybe 8:30/mile overall with my last half-mile at something like 7:30/mile pace.  I felt like Rocky running back from Central Park.

I started Sunday's run with my daughter Hannah, doing a bit more than 3/4 of a mile in about 11:30.  We ran a bout 3:00 easy before transitioning to intervals of :45 run / :15 walk.  She did well.  Like me, Hannah's not a great natural runner, but she improved as she warmed up.  At this point that's all we're looking to achieve.  Hannah says she wants to do a triathlon later this season, but running is by far her weakest discipline.  We're working on it.

I went almost six more miles after dropping Hannah off, averaging between 9:15/mile until mile 5, which was 9:30.  I got mile 6 back down to 9:15, though, and I felt good doing it.  Overall, I went a touch more than 6.5 miles total in an hour and three minutes.  I was tired afterwards, but that was the best I've run in quite some time.  My half-marathon goals feel doable for the first time in a long time.

Running Total: 3 x runs (2.6, 2.5, 6.64); 46.96 pts

Aerobic Total: 114.1 pts

My goal this week was 115 points, so this was right where I wanted to be overall.

Hannah and I lifted together on Tuesday, and as I wrote on Saturday, we did yoga, swimming, and Group Power on Saturday morning.  Man, Saturday was tough!

Tuesday: Warm-Up
Arm Circles
3 x Sunrise Salutes
Neck Circles
General Stretching

Tuesday: Main Sets
4 x DB Military Press / Forward Lunge Walks
3 x Push-Ups / Tuck-Ups
3 x Front Raises / Goblet Squats
3 x French Curls

Tuesday went quick.  We were running late, so we had to get in, work, and get out.

Saturday was a longer day--and much more of a full-body effort--and it left me sore in pretty much all the places that you don't work when you swim.  So biceps, quads, and especially butt.  Most people find the Chest and Shoulders portions of Mossa Group Power to be the most challenging, but it was all the lunges and squats that killed me.  The Chest session was tough, sure, but I finished it no problem.  It didn't leave me sore or anything.  It's my butt that's sore--and maybe a little around my neck, upper back, and shoulders.  I could've swam on Sunday, though.  It was running that hurt.

I feel like lifting legs and core has been helping my running, but it's also been a tough transition.  My core strength is okay, but I've never done much legs, and it shows.  I'm looking forward to getting over the hump, but I suppose I'll never have the kind of leg-strength and comfort that I have in my upper body from all the years of swimming.

Looking Forward
This is a Rest Week, thank God.  I badly need it.

The challenge of being an athlete in your 40s is letting your body recover enough that you improve and don't risk injury.  It's easy to forget, but recovery is a critical component of athletic improvement.  With that in mind, I usually work three weeks hard, one week easy.  This keeps me healthy and motivated, and at the end of the day, that's all I'm trying to achieve.

The challenge this week is figuring out how to keep Hannah working while I bring it down a little.  Tuesday's trip to the gym in particular ought to be interesting.  At 12, Hannah needs less than half the recovery time I do, but she's got further to go to reach her goals.  Bottom line, she needs to keep pushing while I need to find a way to back it down.

I'll let you know how it goes.

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