Building Progress– IMTX Training Week 9

Anyone else working on their bike shorts tan like I am?  Love that it is finally spring!


First, a few “fun” things-

I changed my rear bike set up a little thanks to Karel’s recommendation: Xlab Turbo wing and a sonic nut for the CO2 cartridges, with two tubes and tire levers neatly tucked under.  Bento box in the front for a few snacks, and my tool (& and during training, my workout written on a post-it in case I forget Smile ). I LOVE a simple and clean bike set up. 


{ did this myself – getting good with a ratchet! }

I splurged and bought some Oakley Radar Edge sunglasses (pink lava) which I’ve been wanting for 2+ years!! (and after trying them out at TriMarni Camp).  I love, love, love them!  My old sunglasses had splotches all over the lenses and were not very dark, so I’d get headaches after sunny rides.  These are so nice and dark and no obstructions.  Sidenote: Ladies, I also got the Oakley Women’s Continuance Seamless Sports Bra and it is UH-mazing!!  I wore it all day yesterday because it just felt so great.  I will be asking for more for my birthday – highly recommend them.


{ yay new gear }

As for training, the weeks are flying by, and while most workouts and days are good, some are better than others.  I do have some off days, but those are the times when I learn patience.  If it were easy, it wouldn’t be worth it, right? 

After some pretty strong weeks/weekends of training, I had a couple pretty challenging workouts this week.  I don’t know why, but I think my expectations were pretty high that I’d be able to push bike wattage higher than normal and I’d be running off the bike easier than what it felt like.  I didn’t miss any workouts and I nailed all my zones, but for some reason I thought things would feel easier than they did?  I had plenty of sleep and my nutrition was pretty spot on, so I was sort of perplexed.

Luckily my coach, Marni, was there to reassure me that these were all normal feelings, and that the intervals I’m doing now were a lot longer, yet still fairly intense, so it makes sense that my body was a little tired.  She reinforced that the performance gains will be made when I recover from the hard work and reminded me to focus on building progress in each workout.  Progress, not perfection.  Hopefully she doesn’t mind me sharing, but I love what she said about the ironman distance:

“104.6 isn’t a normal distance and it’s best to accept the progress that is natural and not rushed”

So true – the distance is no small task and takes time for the body to adapt.  But it’s pretty cool to see the adaptions as they happen.


{ Random: the cutest mini-raisin packs work really well for my work-day pre-ride snack, and feeling ready for food & rest after Thursday “Happy Hour[s]” on the bike }

After my few challenging workouts, the weekend came, and on Friday I had one of those “confidence-builder” swims.  The pool was switched long-course (50m) due to spring break, and I had a main set of 300’s broken (fun distance!).  I didn’t worry much about my times, but I can say I felt strong and was able to descend on the second 150; I felt like a machine!  Do you ever have those days were you feel sort of robotic in the water and can just move?


Then Saturday I just had fun on the bike – I did a ride hosted by one of the local tri clubs, but rode solo and enjoyed the hills.  I remembered “your race, your pace” – there were quite a few long pacelines passing me or guys that would simply not allow a girl to pass them, even though I was doing my own thing.  It’s mildly amusing, and is directly correlated to how much pink I wear Smile  Anyway, I enjoyed this bike workout as it had me in intervals most of the time, so it was over before I knew it!

Saturday Brick: 3:30 Bike + 0:30 Run

  • WU: 45min mostly steady with some short harder efforts to open up the legs follow by EZ recovery pace with stretches.
  • MS1 : 2×8’ @ high Z3, 2’ EZ
    2x 12’ @ high Z3, 2’ EZ
    2x 16’ @ mid Z3, 2 EZ
    focus on same steady effort.  
  • 10’ EZ steady ride
  • MS2: 3x 20’ steady low Z3, w/4’ EZ between
  • Rest of the ride is just steady SESP
  • Run: Steady at IM Pace interval.  Run a little under your IM pace then walk the rest (I ran 8-8:15 min/mi then walked until 8:45 or 9:00 mins)


Phew my quads felt it after this!  On my weekend rides lately, I’ve been thinking “oh I’ve only been doing 3.5 hour rides, they aren’t so bad” – then I realized, wait a second, I’m getting 60-70 miles on these rides, that’s pretty solid.  No complaints here.


{ Post-long run Ezekiel French Toast + Eggs over kale }

I ended the weekend with a running-on-tired-legs long run with David & my friend Amanda.  Funny thing is that we ran for 1:45, a little over 12 miles, maybe an 8:40ish pace with some walks, sort of a social endurance run – and had I ran 1 more mile I would have had my half marathon PR!  Now THAT is progress. What started out as a questionable week turned into a pretty solid weekend of workouts.

So generally – training is good – no major aches/pains, just the muscle fatigue that you’d expect with all this volume.  Mentally, yes, I have to admit I’m growing a little anxiety over the event now that it’s becoming “real”.  But, I’m trying not to worry about uncontrollables – weather, equipment failure, etc.  I need to just focus on the things I CAN control – my attitude, my pace, my gear and my nutrition.  Still, to be honest I have [small] concerns about getting my pacing right on the swim (going too fast or slow for such a long distance), getting in a mechanical issue situation on the bike, and being overheated on the run.  I know it’s early to even worry about these things, but they definitely go through my head.  Trust me, I have a lot of time to think during these longer miles! 

But I calm my mind by thinking about all my confidence-builder good workouts, how far I’ve come, and that I know I can do this and am privileged to be able to do this.  And I still love Dr. G’s “two positive thoughts for every one negative” whenever I get down or am having a tough workout.  What are your tricks?  I would love to be able to sleep well the night before a race, but I’m always so jittery!

3 thoughts on “Building Progress– IMTX Training Week 9

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