One thing I have had to get used to this year is not knowing my workouts very far in advance. You know, like it's Friday night before I know what the weekend training will be. I will not lie. This has been a challenge to get used to. BUT, at the same time (I'm being relentlessly positive here) it's pretty fun to log onto TP and read what I get to do the next day. So I get that little surprise, well, every day instead of just once a week.
So I logged on to Training Peaks the other day with all sorts of great anticipation as to what the weekend would hold... and when I saw '4:00-5:00 hour ride' my initial gut reaction was, "sweet!" Then I saw the 40 min run afterward and I was like "even better." You see, I actually love training long. I know some people dread long bike rides like the plague, but I am not one of them. I have loved long bike rides for as along as I can remember. There's always such a sense of accomplishment after you ride long. And I don't know, I just like doing them.
Whenever I'm given a range of times on a workout I pretty much just only see the longer one so "5 hour ride" was what I actually read. My long ride route took 5:12 two weeks ago when I did it so my plan was to do the same ride again. La la la HR range 140-150 is not quite so la la la anymore, but it's still quite comfortable. Anyway, I was like a kid on Christmas Eve last night getting my nutrition ready and setting out everything I would need for the training day. This felt like a real IRONMAN training day and I was stoked to get it done.
And it was a near perfect day to start the ride. I was out the door pedaling at the first sign of light and watched the sun come up over the ocean ~10 min into my ride. It was beautiful and I thought about how much Beth would like to see a picture of it but there was no way I was stopping any more often than the necessary pit stops on this ride so no pictures. Sorry. Just know that it was absolutely stunning. :)
Steady steady steady I rode. Got to Pineapple Hill and of course had to back off a bit to stay in my HR zone. Now it really was rather la la la as I went up up up... but interestingly, there was this guy riding like 100 meters ahead of me... oh boy. All it would have taken would have been one good surge and I would have been on him like white on rice but I was a good girl and did not go get him. I did wonder though if I could get him while also staying in my HR zone? I wasn't sure. We seemed to be riding about the same pace most of the way up. But of course I got him near the top. So as I passed him I looked down and saw my HR right where it should have been and I was so proud of myself but then realized that all I really did was bring on a passenger. But you know what happened next. He was a man after all. As he passed me back and of course wildly picked up the pace all I thought was, my HR is at 150 buddy. And I caught you. Let it go. Anyway, I did the climb nearly 5 minutes faster than I did 2 weeks ago (at the same HR) and now I am not officially the slowest person ever to do the climb.
I felt really strong riding home and was quite happy that I didn't have instructions to do any intervals over HR 150 b/c that actually would have been some hard work today. As it was I was working as hard as I wanted to at HR 148. You'd think maybe I'm just becoming wimpy and stale in zone 2, but in the end the ride was 14 min faster than 2 weeks ago at the same avg HR. So I was within the 4-5 hour range at 4:58. :)
Within a few minutes of finishing the ride I was out running. I won't lie and say it was a fantastic run, but I would say that the reason for that had nothing to do with weakness in my legs. It was more like the monsoon that rolled in just as I was finishing riding made it super tough for me to run uphill with a low HR into such a stuff headwind and driving sideways rain. (Ha! She blamed it on the weather. Classic, huh?) Maybe one of these days I will be fit enough to run solidly off the bike no matter what the weather.
Anyway, it was awesome today. 96 mile ride, 4.5 mile run, no ceilings spinning afterward. In fact, I'm celebrating with some really good Coconut Porter. This training is freaking awesome. I love Ironman.