Mean and ignorant people: why?

June 28, Day 136

Today’s Workouts: 

60 min bike, 15 minutes in Z1, 35 minutes Z2, 10 minutes Z1
1750m swim, 500 yd Z1, 5 x (100 yd Z3/15″ rest) 250 yd Z1, 10 x (25 yd Z5/10″ rest) 250 yd Z1

Yesterday’s workout: 45 min run, HILL REPEATS, 5 minutes Z1, 5 minutes Z2, 10 x (1 minute Z5 uphill/2 minutes Z1) 5 minutes Z1


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There’s an inherent meanness that some people express towards those who are working out I just don’t get.

Anyone who runs or cycles outside for any length of time I am sure has seen it.  While biking on the road I’ve had people lay on their horn right behind me or as they pass me, even when I’m not in their way.  I’ve had people shout names or obscenities.  I’ve been flipped off, cut off, I’ve even had someone cut in front of me and hit the brakes real quick to see if they could make me wreck.  There’s even actually a thing now for “coal rolling” cyclists.  I can sort of get the road rage when there’s no shoulder and I had the audacity to slow you down 2 seconds from your destination, but I’ve had it happen even when there’s plenty of shoulder and no possible way I was in anyone’s way.

For running I haven’t gotten coal rolled or cut off, but I’ve had people cat-call, whistle, honk, etc.  Last Thursday when I was doing the run portion of my brick, I ran across a gas station exit, and a woman in an SUV pulled up to the exit.  She leaned out of her window, yelled something at me, then sped off with a screech to her tires.  I had my music in and didn’t hear what she said, but her expression, tone, and the way she peeled out made me think it probably wasn’t “good morning”.

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Why do people feel the need?  I just don’t get it.  And this is with me being a fairly good size male.  I can’t even imagine how bad it could get for women runners.

Yesterday as I was crushing my hill repeats (and that felt good) I had another common thing for runners happen to me again.  Guy walking his dog along the sidewalk, big dog, way out in front of him, no leash.  Dog comes bounding up to me and he yells “Don’t worry, he won’t bite”.  I have to stop and warily watch the dog until he meanders up and puts the dog on the leash, acting like theres something wrong with me for being nervous.

Grrrrr.

Now keep in mind, I am a dog owner.  I love my dog.  But I do not trust her in ALL situations with ALL people at ALL times.  And I certainly don’t expect a total stranger to be comfortable with her bounding up on them at full speed while they are running.  It’s just plain ignorant to think you can predict your dog “would never”.

'Relax! My dog would never bite you!'

My mother was attacked unprovoked by a dog while running.  She was pretty seriously hurt when the dog knocked her down.  My son was attacked unprovoked by a friend’s dog while at his house.  He had to have some pretty huge stitches to repair multiple bites on his arm.  My dog was attacked (happily not seriously hurt) when walking on the sidewalk when a dog, unleashed, came running out of a garage and went for her.  Guess what the owner said in every single one of those situations?

“That’s the first time that’s ever happened.  Normally my dog WOULD NEVER do something like that”.

Famous last words.  Is it really worth the risk to others?  To your dog?

Anyway, enough ranting.  I’ll just leave it with one more message.  Cheers!

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Dealing with distractions

June 21, Day 129

Thursday’s Workouts: BRICK

60 min bike, 5 minutes Z1, 15 minutes Z2, 20 minutes Z3, 15 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1
30 min run, Z1

Fridays workout: cancelled, OBE

Today’s Workout: Run 10 minutes Z1, 10 minutes Z2, 20 minutes Z3, 10 minutes Z2, 10 minutes Z1


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Life doesn’t always cooperate with the plan.

It’s supposed to get out of the way, you know?  Life is supposed to say “oh hey, big thing you are doing there.  Wanna be supportive, so hey I’ll just sit in the background and not be too demanding whilst you go get ready for that IM. See you in a few months”. Of course, it doesn’t work that way.

Havent blogged as much because I have been really, really busy with other stuff.  There is a lot happening at work right now and a lot happening in general. Some of it is good stuff, some of it stressful, all of it time consuming.  For example, I got approved to take a course I’ve wanted to take for training but it is a lot of extra work and studying to dig into. I wanted to do it last year, but this was the year I got the approval.  So that’s on my plate.

Also, a lot of new stuff.  I did a 45 minute presentation on no less than three new initiatives I’ve rolled out in the last month at last weeks leadership meeting, and I’ve got to do it again for another department soon.  That’s all good, but rolling those things out is a lot of projects at once.

And I just got word there’s going to be a lot more on my plate shortly, potentially.  Not official yet.  More on that later.

Oh, and I just got my car back from the shop after repairing a slight accident.

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So there’s a lot of life going on, and finding time has been difficult,  Especially with training ramping ever upward.  Had my first BRICK (bike + run = ick) Thursday, then got skunked out of swimming Friday and Sunday by the pool being closed both days and there being a big concert out at the lake where I would swim all weekend.

Ugh.

Had a similar run to the one I bonked on 3 weeks ago this morning and did much better.  The training is still on target even with all the distractions.  Hopefully it stays that way.

Have a great weekend. Cheers!

Taking a moment for perspective

June 21, Day 129

Yesterdays Workouts:

45 min run, 5 minutes Z1, 10 minutes Z2, 5 x (2 minute Z4/2 minutes Z1) 10 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1
40 min bike, 5 minutes in Z1, 30 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1

Today’s Workout:

1750 swim, 500 yd Z1, 5 x (100 yd Z3/15″ rest) 250 yd Z1, 5 x (50 yd Z4/20″ rest) 250 yd Z1


IMG_0230So much of this journey is a grind.  It’s obvious, it’s expected.  It’s a very long road to get to Louisville and you aren’t going to finish an IM by taking shortcuts.  That means stuff like yesterday’s run are part of it.  It was 94 degrees when I got out to do the run, and with 5 Z4 repeats in that heat?  Did not manage to hit Z4 for all 5 repeats.  Just too hot.  I did the best I could with what I could do.  Sometimes it is what it is.

That can be frustrating, and if I focus on the frustrations of the journey too much it will drive me nuts.  This is a life experience after all.  It should be one with GOOD experiences.  This post will not talk any more about the grind but instead focus on something cool I never would have seen if I wasn’t doing this.

So Sunday I got up before dawn to do my run.  I was awake, I didn’t want to deal with the heat for a 90 minute 10 miler, and I just felt motivated to do it.  I decided to go ahead and take a selfie of myself before I set out, and demonstrated my complete lack of selfie skill in doing so.

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This….was not supposed to be a body shot.

After failing that effort I set out into the cool(ish) morning air.  I chose a route that goes along the outskirts of town to start, away from too many buildings or streetlights.  That allowed me to enjoy some of the most beautiful morning views of a sunrise I’ve ever seen.  Here’s a shot close to my house.

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Here’s one about a mile away.  As you can see, the sun has come up a BIT more.

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Here’s one as I ran by the K-State football stadium.  The sunrise reflecting in those windows was breathtaking.

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Here’s the last one I took, just before i turned into the city and away from the sunrise.

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This is the sort of stuff that can go unappreciated if you look at the grind too much.  For whatever reason I was feeling philosophical and spiritual Sunday morning and just really enjoyed this morning.  If I wasn’t doing this training, I would have missed it asleep in bed.

What a shame that would have been.

Cheers!

A first time experience

June 17, Day 125

Yesterdays Workouts:

40 min run, Z1
1600y swim, 300 Z1, 1000 Z2, 300 Z1

Today’s Workout:

105 min bike, 5 minutes in Z1, 85 minutes Z2, 15 minutes Z3


So, yeah, that bike today?  Not a typo. It is specifically designed to put the hardest work at the very end to simulate high intensities while in a fatigued state.

My workout plan is trolling me, because I was already in a fatigued state after this week.

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I got Thursdays bike and Wednesdays swim done fine, but the intervals left me exhausted. I actually took a short nap at lunch.  Thankfully Friday’s run was at recovery intensity and that helped.  Last nights swim though I seriously considered skipping and just doing Sunday. Then I realized the pool is closed on the weekends.  All the weekends. All summer.  I guess that’s the fallout from not enough lifeguards. That, folks, is a serious hurdle.  I have Sunday swims all summer long, and Sunday is a big day for recreational use out at the lake.  Fish hooks abound.

One more thing to overcome I guess.

Last night at the pool I had a seriously fun time people watching. No really, it’s kinda boring and what else can you do but notice people around you? There was the 40 something in the Stars and Stripes bikini who spent at least 10 minutes tucking her pigtails into her swim cap before she got in the water.  There was the woman with her boyfriend who left her eyeglasses on while swimming laps. And then here was the young guy next to me playing “beat the swimmer”.

Ive mentioned this before, when someone casual waits for a swimmer to hit the wall then takes off like a banshee for one pool length to try and beat them. It’s an ego thing or something, only this guy could not do it.  He tried 3 times waiting for me to come to the wall and taking off at exactly the same time.  Then he tried a few more times, giving himself a little head start. Then a little more.  Then a little more.  It never worked, because he just wasn’t a very experienced swimmer.

After maybe 6 attempts though, he did something I’ve never seen. I was in lane 6, he in lane 5. He got out of the pool, went down to lane one, and got back in over there.

Dude, it’s ok.  Nothing to be ashamed of.  I’ve been swimming 2-3x a week for years.

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Todays bike will be later than normal because I am at one of the wife’s events again.  I should enjoy this bike, I think it’s the last one I do on this plan sub 2 hours on a weekend. 10 miler running tomorrow morning to follow.  Glutton for punishment that I am, looking forward to it.

Happy Fathers Day to all the Dads. Cheers!

Ebbing, not flowing atm

June 14, Day 122

Yesterdays Workouts:

  • 45 min run, 5 minutes Z1, 5 minutes Z2, 10 x (1 minute Z5 uphill/2 minutes Z1) 5 minutes Z1
  • 50 min bike, 5 minutes in Z1, 40 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1

Today’s Workouts:

  • 50 min bike, 5 minutes in Z1, 40 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1
  • 1750 swim, 500 yd Z1, 5 x (100 yd Z3/15″ rest) 250 yd Z1, 10 x (25 yd Z5/10″ rest) 250 yd Z1

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You may remember how all last week I kept saying how great I felt, how on point my workouts were, how everything was going smoothly.

Yeah.  I need to learn to keep my mouth shut.

It has been hot as I mentioned, and that is making things challenging enough.  However, the way training has stacked up this week isn’t helping.  My first workout contained 10 hill repeats at max effort, one minute each, 2 minutes rest.  I decided to do that one in the morning because it was going to be over 90 by the time I got off work.  Which is never a good thing to run in, especially with 85% humidity.

When I got outside yesterday morning, my first thought was “Seriously?”.  It was already 75 with a temperature index of 82.  There wasn’t a breath of cool air in the breeze either. I gutted it out and did all 10 repeats but it sucked the life out of me, to the point I had a hard time focusing during the day.

Last night I did my bike and then a second one this morning less than 12 hours later.  I felt OK while doing those but when I got to work, every time I moved I let out an involuntary groan of discomfort.  My legs do not want to move, at all, and I am exhausted enough to just want to take a nap.

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Pretty much me, except at a desk and not so contented looking.

Tonight’s swim has 10 max effort sprints in it also.  And tomorrow’s bike is the one with the intervals. It’s not getting any easier.  But then, it’s not going to be any easier in Louisville, so suck it up I shall.

Today was snack attack at work, and I let myself have a cookie.  Probably not a good idea, but I don’t care at this point lol.

Here’s hoping I make it to the weekend without being caught asleep at my desk and still being able to climb stairs.  Hope your weeks are going well.  Cheers!

The heat is on!

June 9, Day 117

Weekend Workouts:

  • 89 min bike, 5 minutes Z1, 15 minutes Z2, 8 x (1 minute Z5 uphill or simulated/2 minutes Z1), 45 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1
  • 80 min run, 5 minutes in Z1, 70 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1
  • 1850y swim, 250 yd Z1, 400 yd Z3, 120″ rest, 200 yd Z3, 120″ rest, 1000 yd Z1

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On to month #2 of the full plan!  I know the distance is going to start ramping up steadily, so I will hold off on declaring too much victory yet, but so far everything has been really solid.  I’m exactly where I think I should be, which probably indicates I don’t understand where I should be more than anything, but you take what you can get.

Friday’s swim, once again, was great.  I’m pushing through the 1000y with no rest just fine, even after 2 hard sets.  This is good because quite frankly it’s my plan to swim Z1 the whole race.  I cannot waste any energy in the water.  Too much other stuff to do.

Saturday it got hot.  Weather was headed to 90 degrees with high humidity.  I went out and got my bike done quickly so as to avoid the worst of it, but still faced 15-20 mph winds most of the bike.  That bike was again hill repeats, but for a full minute and then 2 minutes rest.  I’ve got plenty of power in the legs so far and the hill repeats were no problem.  The problem came at the end of the ride, when I was coming down the home stretch of the final loop.  Suddenly the wind got really, really bad and my allergies started getting the best of me.  They’d been uncomfortable but contained basically the whole ride to that point, but at that point my nose began running freely and my eyes were watering to the point I had to actually close one while riding.  I’m so sweaty at that point I can’t really even wipe them, so it was pretty miserable that last 10 minutes.

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Remember to put tissues in your race bag for the race: got it.

Sunday’s run I actually remembered to take fluids and a salt tablet with me.  I was going to run later in the morning, but at 5:30AM it was already hot and going to get hotter.  I decided to just get up and get it done.  Everything went pretty smooth, except one of my bottles fell  out of my nutrition belt almost immediately and I didn’t notice it was gone until later.  Happily, it was there on the sidewalk near my house still when I got back so I didn’t lose it.

On the way out I saw this thing that looked like a cat on the trail.  Come closer, and it’s an opossum–apparently a really fat one—dead center on the trail.  Get closer still, and I realize there’s probably 6-8 babies staring at me from momma’s back.  She is dead center of the trail and not moving.  It was a little unnerving, because I didn’t have room on the trail to give her more than a couple feet as I went by, but she didn’t do anything but watch.

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Pretty close to what I saw–cute!

Damned cute in retrospect, but I was almost sure I was gonna get bit.

But I didn’t!  And that’s a good thing.  Rabies not what I want to deal with right now.  Not when everything is going fairly smoothly.  Hope you all had a great, productive weekend and are beating the heat.  Cheers!

 

The Tens Digit is Scary

June 8, Day 116

Yesterdays Workouts:

  • 40 min bike, 5 minutes in Z1, 30 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1
  • 1750y swim, 500 yd Z1, 5 x (100 yd Z3/15″ rest) 250 yd Z1, 5 x (50 yd Z4/20″ rest) 250 yd Z1

Today’s Workout:

  • 60 min bike, 5 minutes Z1, 5 minutes Z2, 4 x (5 minutes Z3/3 minutes Z1) 13 minutes Z2, 5 minutes Z1

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I ‘ve been doing this training so long it’s like a way of life.  The event is over 4 months away, and it feels like it’s still sort of in my imagination.  Like it’s not really happening.

And then I had to change the 10s digit on my sign and it’s suddenly like it’s coming way too fast.

I keep this sign on my wall as a reminder to myself to eat right, stay on task, and kind of envision the end goal.  It’s important to enjoy the journey, but it helps keep me focused to remember what the journey is for.  Plus it’s a fun conversation piece and keeps my whiteboard from being really, really dull.

But mostly it’s just kinda there.  I change the last digit every day and think “one day closer” but don’t really think about it all that much.  But somehow today when I had to erase the “3” along with the “0” it caused a flash of minor panic.  Like “whoa, this is just around the corner!”  It’s funny psychologically how even though it’s the same amount of time passing since I last updated the sign (1 day) it FEELS like a bigger milestone.

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I has them

I was really worried headed into this week because I was still pretty wiped out from last week on Monday, but my body has responded just fine.  Workouts have been really good for the most part with the exception of a couple faux pas on my part setting them up.  For example, on Tuesday I was running 1 min hard and 2 min easy for 6 intervals, which I set up on my training app to tell me when to go hard and when to dial back.  However, when I set it up I must have been not paying attention because I set the rest intervals for 2 SECONDS rather than 2 minutes.  I was more than a little shocked at my app when it demanded I go hard again almost immediately after telling me to slow down.

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Anyway, besides stuff like that it’s been an outstanding week.  I hope all of you are doing great.  Cheers!