I’ve been feeling like I’m getting to the limits that I can push before I need to back off for a few easy days. We don’t work off a three week on, one week off model. Instead we keep building up until we decide that I’m at the limit of not just what I can do but more importantly what training I can do and absorb and benefit from.
This is always a bit of a balancing act as we are trying to push the body into adaptations but we don’t want to push so far that I get injured or sick. As it is I’ve been carrying a very mild sinus infection for about five weeks. It’s not getting any worse but it’s also not clearing up. I think it’s tied to the allergies I suffered with for most of last year but I seem to be able to manage it and hold it at bay a little better so far this year.
Another important difference this year to last is that I’m already starting to feel the training adaptations and see improvements in my running and biking as I would expect given the current training load. Anyway let’s get on with the weeks training.
If you’ve never experienced one it’s difficult to describe just how hard the two hour turbo class we do on Monday’s are. We had one of the lads lose his lunch about 30 minutes into the session this week. He had to spend five minutes in the toilet but then he came down, got back on the bike and finished out the session.
I was really impressed.
I’ve only puked off the side of the bike a couple of times in my 18 years cycling. Once was during a mountain bike race and once in a road bike race. It’s very unpleasant and it’s hard to come back from but Joe dug in and kept going.
We have a couple of spaces left in the current block of classes if you fancy joining us drop Grace a call in the shop and she will sort you out the number is 01 6201000. All you need is a bike, towels, water and your kit. You can even rent a turbo if you don’t have your own and we will provide the bucket if you can push hard enough that you need one. Just ask Joe.
Anyway let’s get on with the weeks training.
One of the hangovers from my back operation a couple of years ago is that I have some residual nerve damage which affects my left leg and foot.
Mostly it’s a minor discomfort. There’s some numbness in the foot and continuous muscle flickering in the left calf. Occasionally however the constant firing of the muscle in the left calf can cause problems.
When it’s bad the calf looks like there’s a little baby alien crawling around in there trying to get out.
It’s probably a little bit Irish and parochial that I think when I’m writing my weekly blogs that everyone reading knows me, my background and what I’m hoping to achieve. I often think it only Ais, my folks (hi Mam) and a couple of training buddy’s who read this. However this being the internet where we are just as likely to have visitors from Australia as North Dublin I went checking to see where the actual traffic was coming from.
Online everything can be counted and measured and tracked so when I decided to have a look at who’d been along for a visit the biggest surprise was that we’d had people reading from 105 countries.
One of my pet hates is people being late. The unfortunate part of this pet hate is that more often than not that people is me. For the most part I get away with it because I’m the boss but when it comes to training I try to always be early, it’s probably the only area of my life that I do.
I think it probably stems from showing up for group rides where athletes arrived on time but they did so in their car. They would then spend the next ten minutes getting on shoes, overshoes, gloves, helmet and assembling their bike while the rest of us stood around shivering.
As a result I tend to roll out a ride at the exact start time so as to encourage people to be there early and ready to go.
So with that little introduction to this weeks blog I will start at the end of the week, Saturday evening to be exact. Myself and Ais got all of our kit ready for the Sunday mornings run, shorts, t’s, gloves, warm gear for the post run coffee and clothes for work afterwards. While packing my bag I realised that I’d left my running shoes in the van after my last run. I decided I’d grab them in the morning on my way out.
We were up early the following morning and had a coffee before gathering kit bags and started moving towards the door. I went looking for the van keys only to have Ais remind me that we’d left it in work the previous day and had come home in the car.
I felt that horrible sinking feeling in my stomach as I knew I didn’t have time to go get my runners. The fact that we were doing a three hour run also meant that I wouldn’t get away with a pair of racers. My feet would likely be in flitters after three hours of mud and grass in featherweight shoes. I went rooting through the kit room hoping I’d find something suitable and eventually found a really old pair of trainers that I figured would do.
The problem now was that our finely measured schedule had been thrown out of whack and we were going to be late. I rushed back downstairs then rushed out and piled into the car and headed in to meet the lads.
In the end we were about five minutes late and I deservedly came in for some stick as I’m rather fond of warning people to show up on time of the run or ride or we will be gone without them.
Next week I’ll make sure I’m on time again and I might even wait a couple of minutes in case anyone else has lost their runners…
Anyway let’s crack on with this weeks training…
“Everything happens for a reason, sometimes the reason is that you’re stupid and make bad decisions”
Three years ago I had back surgery and spent almost two months in bed. I was horizontal for 23 hours a day. This came at a time when I had been in the best shape I was ever in. I’d just finished my second Kona and was looking towards a third and with the accumulated fitness built over three consistent years of hard training I was starting to think the next step was to aim for a top ten finish in my age group at the Ironman World Champs. All of these plans came to a screeching halt as I faced the reality of a long and frustrating rehab and the resulting total loss of fitness. Two months of complete lack of any activity never mind training meant I wasn’t just coming back from injury. I was starting at a place that I hadn’t been for probably ten years.
It’s sorta hard to get my head around doing what feels like a Spring or Summer type of training session right here at the raggedy edge of winter. It’s almost only the thought that I’m nearly done. That in just a couple of weeks I don’t have to get up at 5am to go out and do another six hour bike ride that’s keeping me going. Anyway that’s enough belly achin, I should be grateful just to be able to swim, ride and run. I know there’s lots of people who would do anything to be able to. So let’s get on with the training week.
After the Dublin marathon at the weekend we took two days off completely. The aim was to run easy enough that we could make a more or less normal return to training by Wednesday. Neither of us had ever done a full marathon as a training run before so weren’t completely sure how this would work out. It turns out we seem to have gotten the effort about right as we were able to be back in the pool on Wednesday morning.
I’m flattened after just three late nights and three days of over eating at the weekend and that’s without any alcohol. I’ve always been a bit of a lightweight when it comes to getting enough sleep. I’m like a 4 year old, I can’t function without my normal 8 hours. Anyway this week will see us hit the city streets to run the Dublin marathon. We will do it as a training run. That will make it by far the longest training run I’ll have ever done. It’ll be interesting to see how we recover after it. The plan is to run between 3:30-3:40 and hopefully that’s easy enough that we’re back training by Tuesday or Wednesday.
Read on to see how it goes.