It’s amazing what spurs you into action again. The trigger that moves you to drag out your training book and plan to exercise like a crazy person in order to do races again.
I’m not sure if it was flipping through a Triathlete News magazine and seeing ads for races while going through my mail, or seeing the “Welcome Runners” and “Packet Pickup” signs down the street outside a fitness club, but something made me really want to do triathlons again!
Recently, I tried jogging several times a week. It wasn’t enough for me.
It’s just not the same to only jog. I must do triathlons. They’ve completely taken a hold of me, just like the souls in Stephenie Meyer’s The Host. I must swim, bike, run, and lift weights every week. I must have an upcoming race to be proud about, to tell my friends about, to look forward to with every what-am-I-thinking ounce of my slightly overweight body.
Okay, so I’ve got September and October to find races and train for them. I prefer to do races in flatter parts of the state (they require a bit of traveling), so I’ll check in those places, as well as closer to home (hills = not fun). Swimming won’t be a problem (it’s the best part). I know that biking outside on my bike is just not going to happen on a weekly basis. I have a stationary bike. If I have to bike while eating breakfast or dinner, while knitting, while reading a book, then so be it. Yes, I know that everyone will end up passing me on the bike and running portions of my races, but what else is new?
As for training, I know that I will train for a Sprint distance race. For those of you who don’t know about sprints, they usually involve swimming for 300-500 meters, cycling for 10-13 miles, and jogging 2-3 miles. Sometimes, the shorter versions are called Super-Sprints. In my training book (Tom Holland’s “The 12-Week Triathlete”), I have the option of training to finish a race or to improve my performance. The improving performance workouts involve speed work and longer workouts. I know that I can benefit (greatly) from speed work, but I have to consider my dear, sweet back. I think that gentler, shorter workouts (daily) will have a smaller likelihood of re-injuring my back. For those of you who are wondering, last year, I tried to do too much distance and too much speed while jogging. My back protested, and I ended up on prescription anti-inflamatories for my back (1-2 weeks).
My training book has 12-week programs, and I obviously don’t have 12 weeks to train. If I do a September race, we’re looking at 2-3 weeks (you rest the week before). As I did a race in May, and I’ve been doing 1-mile jogs lately, I shouldn’t have much of a problem getting back into racing shape (the slow, but steady, triathlete – that’s me).
I would like to add that part of my motivation for doing more races lies in wanting more race t-shirts! I feel that I got “gypped” in May, because I was given a ladies-fit t-shirt, because it was a ladies triathlon. If you’re overweight, ladies fit t-shirts, even larger sizes, cannot be worn out in public, unless you are in fighting shape. I’m sorry, but I have a gut (everyone always thinks that I’m pregnant, which I’m NOT!). Tight shirts, just don’t work on me. Of course, loose clothes don’t work either, because, as I mentioned before, everyone thinks that I’m expecting, especially if I’m knitting a baby blanket for a friend.
Back to training. The 12-week workouts are broken up into the 4-week base phase, 3-week build phase, 3-week peak phase, and 2-week taper phase. I’ll be doing the build and peak phases. If I don’t do a race until October, then the 7 weeks of training will be just right.
Planned training for the week of September 1 –
Lift Weights & Swim 15 minutes
Swim 15, Bike 30, or Run 15 minutes
Bike 40, then Run 5 minutes
Run 20 minutes
To all of my readers: Please cheer me on and check up on me! I need that “push” to keep it up!!!
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