Shall we do some of that retrospection and reflection now that January is done and dusted?
A little scruffy but STILL SPARKLING DANGIT! January did not defeat me!
Let’s start with the general stuff. January life goals were a big HELL YES. Besides completely procrastinating the great car cleanout of 2017, I did a great job at sticking to the things I wanted to get done. I made ZERO progress on my weight, but I am tracking and weighing daily, and I know last time it took me SIX WEEKS to see any change. If I have to choose between losing weight and fueling workouts properly I’ll take the latter, but I’m hoping to accomplish a little of both. I started pretty strong with batch/healthy cooking but I’ve fizzled the last week or two.
I finally broke the cycle of doing moronic things like staying up super late and drinking like a frat boy a little too often (oddly enough, it just took 11+ hours of training per week, duly noted). To do this Ironman training thing, I found I either had to a) prioritize rest and recovery or b) break the eff down. I’m choosing a) for the next few months and I can do idiot things in May if I want.
Obviously, training-wise, the focus in January was cycling-centric and I capped that off with my first 100 mile outdoor ride. I was able to get in 3 runs in the double digit range, but not a whole lot of mid-week volume to back it up. I struggled to build my swim as planned because of allergies, lack of motivation to swim outside in the cold, and the fact that my ass was attached to a bike seat every day, but I got some work done there and reached the 3k/1 hour mark. I did a pretty good job sticking to strength and recovery work, simply because I’ve figured out the most lazy ways to do it so I don’t have excuses.
Ways to make sure you do double digit runs/actually run faster than a slow slog during bike month – sign up for races with friends!
- 53 miles of running (10h)
- 601 miles of cycling (35h)
- 9541m swimming (3h)
- 8 strength sessions (out of 9 planned)
- Average daily intake: 2161 calories, 112g protein, 64g fat, 30g fiber, 256g carbs
- Average daily deficit: -806 calories
- Average January weight: 188.7
- Average weekly beer consumption: 12 beers (1.7 beers per day)
Going into February, I feel a little behind on the bike (I was hoping 100 miles would be more in my comfort zone instead of doing it once and it being REALLY FUCKING HARD), but I’m less worried about it then I was this time last week. I’m ready to shift from all-crotch-smashy-against-my-bike-saddle-all-the-time January to training a little more evenly in February, making my foray into the longer-than-half-marathon runs so I can test the waters in that sport.
I’m planning on this block (and maybe more in the future) of 2 weeks on/1 week off. I think if I have a shorter time to rest week, I can push myself a little harder. Also – last week was rest week and kinda not that restful, so I can definitely see the value having a stepback week sooner than later where we don’t have errands evvvvry day after work and I don’t do a 7+ hour ride.
What, your rest weeks don’t involve riding 100 miles? Pffft. 🙂
Week 1 of block 2 (this week):
- Long run of 2 hours/10 miles. Already done. I hoped to maybe extend it closer to 3/15 miles, but I did it so close to my long ride that 10 miles was super hard enough. Another hour run easy on the plan tomorrow and that’s it for runs.
- 6 hour bike race. I want to get as close to 100 miles as I can. Even if I fall short, I’ll get to spend 6 hours of QT on a closed course with Death Star and notch another solid outdoor long ride. Backing this up with mostly easy, short bikes the rest of the week.
- 3k+ long swim and a lunchtime shorter speedier swim.
- A more balanced week. My bike streak is done, and while I believe it did me lots good, I will be MORE than happy to not hop on my trainer every 12-36 hours and spend some of that time running and swimming.
Week 2 of block 2 (next week):
- Long run of 3-4 hours. At least 15, up to 20 if I’m feeling good. I’m actually blocking my long workout of the week off for this instead of a bike. And, this will be the last big workout before a rest week, so if I feel awesome and go for the 20, I can immediately transition to rest week, I don’t have to *save* anything. I’ll back this up with a *little* more mid-week volume (probably 2×1 hour runs, one slightly faster than slog pace).
- Backing off on the cycling volume for one week. No long ride, but 3-4 hours of quality riding and 1-2 hours recovery happy fun riding throughout the week.
- 3-4k long swim. Race distance would be great, if not, at least an hour session plus a shorter lunch speed session.
I haven’t planned this one out yet, but I’m hoping to spend some good QT in the pool. Swimming is recovery to me. Even a long swim makes me feel awesome the next day. As for the rest of the week, I could approach it with little mid-week volume and a long effort on the weekend, or just a consistent 1-2 hours max daily. It might be nice to just roll through some comfortable sessions and give my mental toughness a week off. I’ll have to see how I feel.
Next block (Feb 20th and beyond):
I’m still struggling with what’s next and to be honest, I think I’ll have to evaluate how this block went and what I need to work on. Do I need more cycling or running work? When should I do my two “big days“? Do I feel like I need more volume or can I back off a little and work more speed? How absolutely BEAT am I? Should I do 2 or 3 weeks on before a rest week? What life stuff do I need to work around?
Only time will tell. But, I definitely have goals. Let’s list them, shall we?
- 20 mile run once, 15+ run at least once
- 4k swim at least twice
- Two outdoor long rides approaching 100 miles. Now that I’ve hit the mark once and have two “long days” planned a bit later in the cycle, I’m not as hyper-focused on triple digits, but the effort should be there.
- 2-3 sessions per week that are harder than an easy slog (cycle class or videos, pool speedwork, some intervals that are faster than 11-12 min/mile run, etc)
- Weights twice a week. Get into the gym at least a couple times to lift the slightly heavier stuff. One non-dozen set each week since it’s kind of getting easy now.
- Continue with the boots, rolling, and/or stretching everyday game. It’s really helping.
And, to round out February, I have some non-triathlon related goals. The big focus of the month is IRONMAN TRAINING. Everything else that needs to fall off to hit that hard? It’s fine. I’ll worry about my to do list and how my house looks in May. But, I would like to accomplish some things, so it’s worth putting them out there.
It was a month of balancing a LOT of the sporty sporty with a little of the beers. February will be much the same.
Healthy Living Stuff:
- Even if the beer-only embargo is lifted, don’t be an ass about drinks.
- Beer on weekdays, other stuff on weekends/special occasions.
- Don’t average more drinks than January. Training hours will be going up. Beer counts should not.
- Continue to track my food and weigh every day and aim for the proper ratios. It will be GREAT to have this data.
- Water. it’s always harder for me in the winter. Most days I’m getting my ~64 oz but I should be drinking more if I’m training. I should be getting that PLUS some during workouts.
- Realize that cooking during the week is probably not going to happen and my limit for batch cooking on the weekends is lower than normal. Put together SUPER easy meals and plan for healthy take out options in between.
- Priorities go in this order: eating good food to fuel my workouts THEN trying to maintain a deficit. Both are good, but the former is more important than the latter.
Life Goals Stuff:
- I feel torn up about what’s going on in the world right now, but for my own good I need to largely ignore it. I don’t have time to give, but I have money I can donate to causes that are fighting all the bullshit and that’s something I can actually do. This month, I need to investigate where to put it and set up some sort of donations.
- Actually clean out the cars. For reals. It’s almost hilarious how long we’ve been procrastinating this.
- Speaking of cars, after cleaning it out, mine is very overdue for it’s 60k mile service. It’s just dropping it off and spending the money.
- Wash and lube the entire bike stable. Evilbike is a dirty girl right now and Death Star is kind of sticky.
- Finish the last 3 triathlon coach chapters this month and start studying for the test.
- Keep making small efforts to pursue my big scary end of the year side hustle goals. Play with my book outline I’ve started. Continue to play with growing followers and social media stuff. Avoid personal facebook because it is a hive of scum and villany.
- Once we get our bonuses, consider what we’d like to apply them to in terms of a housing project (and start researching).
Life goals – to have all Mondays looking and tasting this awesome!
All in all, it feels GREAT to have survived January and actually kicked it’s butt! February is looking promising and then it becomes one of the best times of year… spring!