It was another solid weekend of training and, as of today, I have 3 months exactly until I hit the starting line. In many ways, three months seems like an eternity. In other respects, it feels like every day is slipping away so quickly.
Barton Springs Swim
Because I had skipped my Barton Springs Friday swim, I had to get it in this morning before my ride. Turned out to be a great workout for me and I hit some new best times!!
2 x 600 (12:39, 12:40)
2 x 400 (8:39, 8:25)
2 x 200 (4:14, 4:16)
Technically, the 2nd repeat was supposed to be faster on all of the distances, but I’m just happy to have kept them even especially since the way back in Barton Springs is going against the current. I actually felt a flow in the water! I can definitely feel a huge difference in my endurance and energy levels with my swim. It’s happening…YAY!!!
We were scheduled to ride 50+ miles, which turned out to be the very hilly Bee Caves Loop twice, including a lollipop extension from Escarpment to Mopac on the first loop. Katy and I started and finished together, completing our best ride yet of the training season. Our ride ended up being 56 miles and our average was 16.3 mph overall (3:30). At the beginning of the ride, we questioned whether or not we were feeling stronger. At the end of the ride, we confirmed it. Several of the riders that we train with had cut their rides short and/or decided not to do a second full loop. Believe me, I wasn’t excited about starting loop #2, but I’m glad we dug through it. I believe more than ever that I have to continue to train my mind even more than my body to fight through the low moments…the doubts…the sore legs and the wind. It wasn’t blazing fast, but the course was 3.5 hours of hard work. Aside from the wind (which became more of a factor on loop 2), we were blessed with sunshine and mild temperatures near 60. You can’t ask for anything more in mid-January.
So, on our first loop, Katy and I were on Southwest Parkway and we came to a stop at the bottom of a rather large hill. I clipped out with my left foot like I always do. Unfortunately, the bulk of my weight was still on my right side. I knew it before it even happened. I was tipping over and my bike was at a stand still. It was like watching a drunk person fall over. I couldn’t get my right foot unclipped and just fell straight on my butt. It didn’t really hurt at the time and I was truly more concerned with the bike. Katy was next to me and helped me unclip my foot. All of the sudden, I heard a voice from behind me.
“Carrie?” a male voice questioned?
“Yeah?” I said, still laying by the side of the road hot with embarrassment.
“It’s Jeff,” he said. “Is your bike ok?” He asked jokingy.
“Yeah, I’m fine…new pedals…blah, blah, blah.”
In a moment, the light turned green and he was gone. Well, Jeff is one of my husband’s work colleagues and last time he was at our house, he was admiring my bike and talking about how we should ride together some. Now, he was staring at me as I lay on the side of a busy road having crashed going 0mph! I looked like a little rookie who’s never ridden a bike in their life!
A little embarrassing to say the least. Hardly the behavior of an Ironman in training!
Immediately after our ride, I headed to San Antonio where Shawn and I were spending the weekend at his parent’s house. Being here makes me feel like I’m on vacation. I get to hang out on the couch, read a book, drink wine and not think about all of the things I should be doing!
Exactly three months to Ironman and an 11-mile run was on the agenda this morning. Shawn and I headed out at 8am and mapped out a challenging out and back course near his parent’s house in NW San Antonio. We ran some hills and I was sluggish for this first half. Plus, my butt was sore from the fall the day before. Turns out I have a bruised butt-cheek!! Sweet. I won’t gross anyone out with photos. I’m noticing that it is taking my body longer to warm up and ease into these difficult runs. I suppose it’s natural since I’m going into the these runs on tired legs. Still, at 5 miles, we were averaging a 9:15 pace. After a quick water break at the grocery store, we made our way back and I began to finally find the run. I took a Power Gel and that helped me come alive. I ended with 11.69 miles at an 8:53 overall pace. Again, good for the mind and confidence level.