Monday, October 3, 2011

Ironman Training, Day 3

So, I'm signed up for Ironman Canada on August 26th, 2012! After spending September doing not much other than loafing around and eating (a.k.a. recovering from Paris-Brest-Paris), Saturday October 1st was the my first "official" day of training for Ironman Canada.

Ironman is one of those "bucket list" things that up until last year I doubted I would ever accomplish. But after putting in the time and training to do the half-iron distance event at Pacific Crest in June 2010, I realized I could train for and complete an Ironman if I really wanted to.

I've spent 2011 mostly on my bike, preparing for Paris-Brest-Paris. After the Canby Gator Grinder Triathlon in May, I completely quit swimming. In June, with some tendonitis developing in my ankles, I decided to quit running as well. That left me with plenty of time to train on my bike. By July 31st, I'd logged 5220 miles, and by the end of August, post PBP, I was well over 6000.

Taking September as a recovery month was something I'd planned on. But ultimately, I was forced to do it. PBP did a number on my knees. I've never had knee trouble before, but the combination of the big miles I've ridden all year, the SIR 1000K in June, as well as PBP in August ultimately proved too much on my formerly healthy knees. I'm fighting some kind of tendonitis in my left knee and rehabbing it needs to be a top priority.

My goals during training are as follows:

1) Start off easily, to allow my knee to continue to recover.
2) Shed some weight. I'm starting at 145 (how embarrassing!) and want to get back to 130 by May (130 was my original WW goal, which I achieved in June 2009) and 125 by August (I was 126.5 in the summer of 2009. Lean but not skinny.) This will require a fair bit more discipline on my part than I've displayed this year.
3) Work on swimming. Swimming is my weakest link. My technique is poor, and I've never swum more than 3000 meters in one go. Plus, I tend to panic in cold water. So, lots of pool time is going to be necessary. I'll start with 2 days a week this month, but need to build to 3-4 days per week fairly soon. I may look into a swim coach.
4) Build power on the bike. 2011 was all about endurance. 2012 needs to be about building power and speed. Current threshold power is 181 watts. Would love to build that to over 200 by race day.
5) Run faster. I did lots of distance training in 2010 training for the half. Got my LSD runs up to 15 miles last year. And though I got faster, I didn't get *much* faster. I'll need to focus more on speed work in 2012.

I hope to use this blog to record my training and keep myself accountable. I'll also share what I learn along the way.

Day 1: Saturday, October 1st. - Easy 20 mile bike ride. Left knee felt OK. Not great, but OK.
Day 2: Sunday, October 2nd. - Easy run - R3 W2 x10 plus warmup and cool down. 54 minutes, 4.4 miles. Left knee felt OK. Felt some pain over the patella, but it faded during the workout. No post-workout knee pain or visible swelling.

Day 3: Today - One hour cycling class at C-Velo. Threshold Power testing. Avg 220 watts in 5min TT, 191 watts in 20min TT. --> Threshold Power = 181 watts. ZERO knee pain! I attribute that to concentrating on maintaining a high cadence, instead of powering through, which is what I usually do.

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