As usual, i’m playing catch-up with blog updates…but not to fret! I am SO TIRED right now. Next week is a taper week, but i’m seriously considering starting my taper NOW. Why? Well, as you can see from my dry-erase board pic to the left, this has been a hellacious week of training, on top of my busy work week (which includes getting up around 4:30am every weekday).
Add to this the fact that I had quite a bit of drama in the wee hours of Sunday morning. I had an amazing long brick workout Saturday and spent the rest of the day relaxing with friends, then taking a nap so that I could go out later that evening. I don’t go out much right now, so I was excited to get out and see people and have a good time! It was a crazy, wacky night, and there was no drama involved UNTIL I got home. You see, I had my friend and her sister follow me to my house because they live outside of Baton Rouge, and I didn’t want them to have to drive home. We got to my house, came in, and I ran upstairs…then I hear, “Sarah, your dog just got out!”
My natural reaction to this “event” is to sprint…and I did. I ran downstairs and sprinted out the door, leaving my friend and her sister there. Come to find out my friend called another one of our friends to say “we can’t find Sarah!”
Biskit has gotten out SO many times, and he always runs like the wind. He’s a Parson Russell Terrier…it’s their nature to haul as*! He’s given me SO many scares, it’s not even funny. I have chased after that little streak of white so many times, I can’t even begin to count. I have sprinted after him with a broken foot. I have sprinted after him in traffic. I have sprinted after him across people’s backyards, through ditches, and in the rain. Biskit has been my “child” for seven years, and has been one of the main “constants” in my life. Any dog lover will tell you that the unconditional love provided by a dog is priceless…and they are right. Biskit has “been there” for me through some hard times, and I dote on him like any mommy would with a child. He is a precious, friendly, loving little bundle of energy, and makes me smile each and every day.
So…after a few hours of driving around in the dark trying to find him, my friend and her sister had to leave. What did I do? Got in my car and continued to search. Around 6:00am, two other friends came and picked me up, gave me coffee, and we continued to search. After a while, they brought me home and told me to make 20 signs, which we could put up on telephone poles. Come to find out they did this because they were worried we would find him in the street, and they didn’t want me to freak out.
As I was printing out the last of the signs, I got a call that they found him! One of my friends got a “feeling” that he was near her house, so she drove down a nearby street and lo and behold…Biskit was sitting in someone’s yard! He saw her car and started running towards it…she opened the door and called him, and he jumped in! He had been missing for six hours!
Can you say RELIEVED?
Just got a bath...you can tell he's sleepy!
They brought him to me, and he had apparently rolled in something (as usual). I gave him a bath and we took a six-hour nap on the couch! I was SO emotionally drained, my eyes were swollen, and on top of it my body was tired. I had a swim workout lined up for Sunday, but that obviously didn’t happen. Instead, Sunday was spent relaxing in the pool and cooking food for the next couple of days.
All of this started to take a toll on me Tuesday. You’ll read about my workouts in a second, but Tuesday’s brick was awesome. I felt great during and after it, came home, worked on my computer a little, and then it hit me. I was SO EXHAUSTED! I made myself stop and take a nap from noon-1:00. Actually, I had set my alarm for 12:30 but no way a half-hour nap was gonna cut it! I slept like a log for an entire hour and woke up and was starving! Called in a chicken schwarma plate with extra Grecian sauce and Haloomi cheese, and it was DEVINE! Even the fact that I was burping garlic for the rest of the day was fine…oh, and I ate leftovers for dinner!
Anyway, the fatigue started on Tuesday. Wednesday, I got up to train my 5:15am client and was fine…but somewhere in the gap between 6:15 and 7:15 I became very emotional. I was driving to train my 7:15am client and thinking about my upcoming swim workout that morning, and was dreading it. The physical, mental, and emotional fatigue was kicking me in the butt! I texted a few of my friends to let them know I was thankful for their love and support, and I think part of me wanted someone to tell me to take the day off from my workout. Part of me, on the other hand, realized that I tend to make the swim into this horrific, terrible thing, and in doing so, i’m letting it “win.” I refuse to let it beat me! So, I talked to my friend/client Leslie and she agreed to meet me to swim! I got there before she did, and tackled the warm-up and open water drills, along with the first set of 600 continuous yards. The workout went swimmingly, lol. See, it always happens this way…I get going and i’m FINE…and usually have a better workout than expected.
It’s all in the mind.
Thursday was worse…I was even more emotionally and physically drained…and today I am MAKING myself take the day off. Right now it’s 10:30 and i’m drinking coffee and my legs are sore, tight, and DEAD. I feel like I need a nap already.
Friday August 21, 2009 = Swimmin’ before my fan club showed up!
2000 yd / 00:51
Warm-Up: 200 yards (4:53)
40 min nonstop (1600 / 40:15)
Heads-Up Drill 4 x 25 (rest 20 sec; ea took 30 sec, and took 3 min total)
Sigting 4 x 25 (rest 20 sec; ea took 30 sec, and took 3 min total)
Swim felt pretty good! My ADD gets me…swimming endless laps sucks, lol. I alternated 100 yards without buoy with 100 yards with buoy. I really focused on stretching out, keeping my kicking in synch, and pacing myself. Taking a breath every 4 strokes feels the best now. Taking one every 3 strokes (bilateral) seems to wear me out and I feel rushed. Let me tell ya, the open water drills at the end kicked my ass! Anyone who wants to swim with their head out of the water can be my guest…it’s obvious that when you do so, your legs sink. It’s a necessary thing, though…
Saturday August 22, 2009 = BRICK
Opted for new scenery for brick workout, and it was great!
Plan called for 15 mi ride/30 min run x 2-3. It also said to do 12-15 mph. I don’t do 12 mph! 😀 Top speed 20.2.
Part I: 15.07 mi 00:5416.7mph pace
Transition took 3:23 because I had to take front wheel off bike and put all in trunk! Wasn’t lollygaggin’ but obviously won’t have to do this in race!
Part II: 2.87 mi / 00:3411:48 pace
Ran in shady, pretty neighborhood wearing new Zoot Ultra Race shoes. They rock! Fastest pace 9:22
Transition took 3:57 because had to take bike out of trunk and put front wheel on…again, obviously this won’t happen in race!
Part III: 15.26 mi / 00:5716.1mph pace
Opted to change up the route a bit, and found it to be a good ride! Lots of hills and shade!
Transition took 3:13 because had to take front wheel off bike and put all in trunk, yet again, this isn’t something i’ll have to do in the race!
Part IV: 2.98 mi / 00:3009:56 pace
Tired, but still felt good! No side stitches or anything! Paced myself! Fastest pace 8:13.
Monday August 24, 2009 = Felt like I could run forever!
7 mi / 01:1110:12 pace
Great run! I had to stop to pee twice, tho…lol…fortunately there’s a restroom at a nearby park! I felt like I was going soooo slow at first but it worked out. I had a
weekend that should have been more restful, but alas…Biskit was missing or 6 hours Sunday morning and I didn’t get a lot of “down time.” My body was so happy to run and it felt great, though! Also, it was cooler and not humid this morning, so I wanted to take advantage of it! Training plan called for a swim yesterday (that couldn’t have happened, considering the Biskit fiasco), so I thought i’d swim today…decided to knock out Thursday’s run today b/c of the nice morning weather. Will swim tomorrow and have a brick Wed.
Tuesday August 25, 2009 = Brick
Part I 17.99 mi / 01:0217.4mph pace
Prior to this workout, my mentality was “this will be a piece of cake!” I was thinking back to Saturday’s 15 mi ride/30 min run x 2 brick and today’s workout seemed like nothing.
I was wrong! It wasn’t easy! I ran 7 miles yesterday and have switched up my workouts this week a bit. Instead of swimming today, I did the brick (because I knew i’d have free time this morning before it got hot). My legs weren’t “dead,” but they were complaining the entire ride. My quads were burning and I refused to ease up too much (typical me). As usual, there were some winds and I seemed to be riding into a strong headwind towards the end of the ride. I chalked this up to additional work, as I had thrown in a few sprints throughout the hour.
Fastest speed = 20.4mph.
Part II 1.99 mi / 00:1808:47 pace
I hopped off my bike, took front wheel off, put everything in my trunk, changed shoes, etc…and decided I had to pee…but where? I squatted…yes, I squatted next to my car…I HAD to…there was NO way i’d have been able to run if I didn’t!
Run went great! I ran a mile out and turned around. On the way back, it was one of those “you can do it!” moments. Stevie Nicks started singin’ on my iPod and I picked up the pace. I felt great! I was breathing, nothing hurt, and nothing felt labored. I only had to do 2 miles, and I feel I pretty much showed ’em who’s boss!
Wednesday August 26, 2009 =Dreaded this swim…but turned out to be a good one!
2200 yd / 00:60
I was mentally and physically exhausted this morning…dreaded my swim. I realized that I had no choice, of course, and I chinned up and did it. I got to the pool and there were like 10 little old people in there! It was a party! That made me smile. I got in and did the 200 yard warmup in 4:55. Used the buoy for half of it. I didn’t rush to get through the drills (Heads-up 4 x 25, rest 20; Sighting 4 x 25, rest 20), and when I ended with those, my watch said “13:15.” Included in my total time is my “lollygag” time, even though I didn’t lollygag TOO bad. 🙂
Continuous Swim (any style/stroke) was on the agenda: 3-4 sets of 600 yards, resting 45 sec after each. I did 3 sets of 600 (15:35, 15:30, and 15:10). Towards the middle of the second set, I realized that freestyle is the most efficient, easiest stroke, so I tried to maximize usage of it for the rest of the workout. I threw in some breaststroke (which made my adductors sore next day) and a few sidestroke laps in addition to using the buoy. My realization that my freestyle is much better made the entire workout earn 5 stars in my book, as well as the fact that I was consistent with breathing every 4 strokes each and every time! I didn’t feel rushed and my heart wasn’t jumping through my chest. YAY for swimming, and yay for just doing it, because I know i’ve built a ton of character in the past 12ish weeks of training for this race. It’s changed me for the better!
Thursday August 27, 2009 = BRICK
Part I 13.46 mi / 00:4816.9mph pace
Felt tired and legs didn’t seem to have the “go” in ’em, but got it done! Focused on keeping a steady cadence.
Part II 2.99 mi / 00:2709:01 pace
No complaints about the run…legs just seemed to be on autopilot and I picked up the pace on mile 3. With half a mile to go, I stepped it up even further. Fastest pace was 7:23.
To sum things up, I want to share one of my favorite poems, “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley.
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.
This poem pretty much sums up my feelings on my personal struggles throughout the years.