Base training is over, and the build period has begun. From now on, we have 2 build weeks, followed by a recovery week for our bodies to recover. This past weekend was a pretty big one, as it was a test of endurance balancing work, social life and IronTEAM life.
Coming off a pretty busy work schedule, we had our usual Friday Happy Hour at the office. I had to resist the drinks a little because I planned to go to Equinox after work to do my swimset, which was:
1 x 500 Any Stroke – Warmup
6 x 50 @ 1/2 Interval, rest :30
1 x 400 Easy, rest :30
10 x 100 Start @ 1:45 (it was more like 2:00 for me), rest :30
1 x 400 Easy, rest :30
3 x 200, start at 4:00, rest :30
1 x 200 Cooldown, long & lean
3,400 yards! whew! That was a long Friday night! The night wasn’t over, immediately after I went to my friend Jesyka’s birthday masquerade party in Santa Monica. I had to hold back though and be sober in prep for a long weekend. I also went home at midnight, right before my carriage turned back into a pumpkin.
Saturday was supposed to be our first big brick in Westlake. I was pretty excited the night before, but the morning of, we were faced with some pretty hard rain on the way to practice. Coach said it didn’t rain enough to wash away all the oil slick on the roads, so safety first, the brick was postponed, and we ran 8 miles instead. At first it was rainy and cold, but it eventually got warm. I dunno what it is, but I always seem to have bad runs in Westlake, and it was no different – yes, I struggled. What gives? The other week, I was out partying all day/night, and had the best run of the season. Last night I had the perfect amount of sleep, no alcohol, ate healthy food… but the run was rough! You never know sometimes! We did loops around West Lake, so the first loop was challenging, but I was into the groove the second time around. Looked like everyone had a great run though, and after, we (Iron + Tri teams) had post-run eats at The Counter Burger down the street. Since we were the first guests, we took over the whole restaurant:
Saturday was another busy day as at night, went to have dinner & light drinks for my friend Kristi’s birthday in Venice. It was expected to be a crazy night, but again, had to hold back because of the long brick ahead. I pinky promised to have 2 drinks max, but ended up doing 3 (2 at the bar though). Left early, slept early, woke up early. No prob!
Last year, I’ve always thought the hardest workouts are when we did a run on Saturday, then brick the next day, for whatever reason, and today was one of those. I was glad I held back the night before too because I was up for a doozy. For the team, we were to ride north on PCH to John Tyler Rd in Pepperdine and back. For alumni, especially IM Canada teammates, we had to turn into Temescal Canyon, do a mile climb up, then back to PCH. Once we hit John Tyler, instead of turning around, we were to climb up campus to what I thought was (and still is) the hardest hill we’ll encounter during an IronTEAM practice. It isn’t that long, but it’s pretty steep. Some people had to unclip and walk their bikes up. I did a zig-zag motion up, and was very… very slow. On my way down though, my left brake loosened and scared me, but I pulled over and noticed it was still braking correctly, but wasn’t springing back to place. I just needed to survive the ride back and take it easy. Already spent from that tough climb, the heat was coming in. Once on the run, we had to do a 4 mile somewhat hilly “Troll Bridge” run. It was a tough one, but was still able to pull off a pretty decent run pace, much better than at Westlake the previous morning.
Although, by the end of this my body felt defeated, I actually felt great for accomplishing the first big build of the season. I wanted to push myself a little bit more, so I definitely taxed my body trying to go in the 17-22 mph range (with a bit of tailwind on one direction). It’s these hard workouts that make us stronger, and I always have to remind myself, it’s all about the journey, not the race. It’s about our LLS Heroes and teammates why we swim/bike/run.