I tell ya, Ironman was the best day of my athletic life, but it sure can do a number on the mind. Seemed like life after Ironman felt like I wasn't training at all, and I'd get down on myself about it. The fact is that Ironman is SO MUCH training and I became accustomed to it. Those 16-20 mile runs, 70-100 mile bike weekends were just a part of life, so when the need wasn't there to train like that I let myself think I wasn't doing anything at all. But I did still train, as disorganized as it may have been (and that's ok, life doesn't always have to be all training), and enjoyed a great full season of racing. I really wasn't super dedicated to training though, didn't even keep a log after Ironman. Anyway, did the Hobblecreek Half Marathon and Utah Half Ironman and got kind of lazy :) I did race the sprint at Kokopelli in September, but that wasn't a big deal. Also ran the Halloween Half Marathon with my hubby, but again, not a huge deal. So knowing we wanted to get pregnant, that I had no intentions of racing in 2011, and the fact that I was taking physiology at school and was just plain busy, I hardly trained at all from September on through the end of the year. Now I advocate taking a break, I didn't get on myself about it, I was busy and pregnant and it was ok to step back. But then after we miscarried and I recouped a little I got the itch to get moving again, but man, it's hard! I don't really have a problem doing hour long workouts, but much more than that and I was getting pooped. Still, I decided several weeks ago to start following my IMSG training plan just for fun, just for something to follow, until we get life figured out around here.
During the week it's doable, 60-75 minute workouts, I can do that, but then looking at my log and my plan and seeing what miles I was already putting in at this point last year?! I felt a wee bit inadequate. So I've changed the long runs for the next 6 weeks or so so that I can ease back into them without getting hurt, and did the same with the bike although I'd like to see myself get back to those 50-80 mile rides sooner than later.
I'm enjoying following a plan again and yes it's bugging me not being able to answer people when they ask "so what are you doing this year?" race wise, but I'm hoping by the end of the month of so I might have an answer. I have had a few humbling moments, and a few good ones this last month.
Good - ran the 5k at BASH, an all snow run. The fog was super heavy and I led the race so it was a huge challenge navigating a windy course when you can't see more than a few feet in front of you and all that's around you is white. It was easily the hardest 5k I've ever done with the hills and the snow, but it was fun! Even that time I fell flat on my face after post-holing :)
Bad....and kind of good - did a 2 hour test ride on the Computrainer at work this week. It wasn't at a hard wattage/power, just a long ride to see what my heart rate would do. I felt like I'd been going a while and looked at the clock...8 minutes. Are you kidding me?? I used to do 2, 3, even a 4 hour trainer ride last year this time! Oh man I wanted to die, the hardest part was just telling my mind to keep going...that and I wore my thinnest tri shorts and not bike shorts like I should have. But I made it through the ride and even felt pretty strong mentally and physically that last 45 minutes or so. Unfortunately for me the computer didn't save my test so I get to do it again....yay.
Good - my husband has been getting out every weekend at least, to be active through runs or snowshoeing. That's great. I'm glad he's healthy now. His hot bod isn't bad either ;)
Bad - ran a 5k last Saturday after myself and the family being sick all week (I know, I know, not the smartest, but I was feeling better that day and being so poor I just can't waste any entry fee I ever pay no matter how cheap, neurotic, I know). Felt HORRIBLE! Seriously, the first mile was fine, was holding like 6:15 avg, but those last 2 miles were just not fun at all. I settled into a just-finish-it pace but it took forever, and even got beat by a short plump girl - dang it! I know I haven't trained much at all, but it was just a 5k! I raced several shorter races like that in the fall 'under trained' or so I thought, but this was bad. Part of it was being sick that week, but part of it I think was just my body saying "look hot shot, you don't train me, I'm not performing, period". The race series has a 10k next Saturday, and a 15k two weeks later. I sure hope they go better because that 5k made me not want to race again at all. yuck.
Good - ran 10 miles today, 10 pleasant miles. I'll being honest here, I haven't run more than 6 miles at any one time since that Halloween Half October 31st. So I ran 8 miles last week, ended with a sharp brain pain that I get from time to time and it worries me, but an MRI 3 years ago says I'm fine. This week though was great. I wasn't looking to push it hard, just run to get the miles, averaged 8:45 or so, and never had those, "are we there yet" thoughts or brain pains. Felt strong at the end too. Gave me a nice boost of "maybe you can do this again", which I know is silly to think I can't, I go through an off season every year, but I still struggle with it.
So there you go, whew! Long post. Sorry, but good for me to document stuff, even if it isn't all that impressive lately. Hope your winter training is going well, that you're healthy, and looking forward to the spring!