Wow. It's been nearly a month since I've updated. No excuses, just lazy. I'm getting used to a different kind of training. So far, I'm finding it mentally and physically easier. On the mental side, there's so much variety that there isn't burn out. I'd get up sometimes this summer, ready for a 14 mile run and just dread it. Getting out of the apartment was hard. Running hard six times a week, week in and week out, that's tough. Now, I'm bouncing from different things. It makes each workout seem somewhat new. It helps I'm learning new sports -- and seeing improvement. On the physical side, there's less wear and tear. This is the main reason I'm giving the triathlon a go. My body needs some time off the pounding of the road. Swimming and cycling are exhausting, but there's no lingering aftereffects.
I'm happy with how training has gone so far. I'm doing six workouts a week on average. I do each discipline twice. Maybe I'll increase that as I get really into the training. For now, it works. I can live a semi-normal life and still get in a bunch of workouts. Today I registered for the tri: The New Jersey State Triathlon on July 26. I'm doing the Olympic Distance. That leaves me about 17 weeks or so. Plenty of time. My progress report:
Running: Only going out twice a week is strange. I've definitely lost some running fitness. My body just isn't in a groove. What I noticed about hard training in running is how I'd get my body almost used to the pounding. I'd have some of my best workouts after five straight days running. With only a couple times out there a week, it's more like starting over each time. This week I did 17 miles, a 6 miler and an 11. Last week, I ran 22 miles. As I cycle more, I'm sure I'll start to curtail the long runs. Running won't be my problem in the race. It's the other stuff I need to figure out.
Swimming: Getting back in the pool has been great. I can feel myself getting stronger. The first couple times, I wondered what the hell was going on. Things ached that only got sore when I'd move apartments. As time has gone by, the workouts are more manageable. My latest thing is to swim ladders, starting with a 25, then 50, 75 and so on up to 200, then going back down again. With a 100 warmup and cool down, that's a 2000-yard workout, about right for me at this point. This week I swam 4,000 yards. Last week, I went 4,900. Even my flip turns have improved, thanks in part to some YouTube research.
Cycling: This is the mystery. Cycling is so key to the tri. It's over half the race when you break it down. At this point, I have no idea how I'll be on the bike. I'm riding an exercise bike at the gym while I prepare myself for dropping money on a road bike. After going to the bike shop today, I'm hopeful I can get a decent bike that won't make me poor. My goal is to start riding outdoors next weekend. This week, I put in 41.3 miles on the bike. Last week I covered 37 miles. I've been told time in the saddle and heart rate are most important. After fits and starts, I'm getting my heart rate to a decent level, mostly around the high 120s and spiking to 140 or so when the bike encounters a "hill" in the random setting. Today's ride was 1:18, a decent amoung of time to sit in a YMCA staring a mirror.