Monday, March 09, 2009


Balance - as a multisport athlete, it's the one thing most of us strive for, but few of us are able to actually pin down. Case in point:

Run too many miles one week, too tired to ride. Ride too many miles, no time or energy to get in solid runs. Try and put too much in one day, knock yourself out for the next couple.

I try and remember this as I go about my seemingly haphazard training, but winter is really tough to perform tasks with consistency. For instance, the beginning of this week was cold and we had a fair bit of snow. By Friday it was over 70. Armed with this information by midweek, I was able to plan the weekend to be big. Not super ambitious, but definitely not easy.

21 hours

Swim: 12,200m
Bike: 170+ miles
Run: 51 miles

I'm pretty pleased with the week's results. 3 solid swims, each session at least 4000m with Friday's extended swim of 3200m going really well. Felt comfortable, negative split each 1000, and only fatigued a little towards the end.

Runs were good - with 3 runs over 12, including 12 on Friday (right before my evening swim) at Patapsco with Kris and Justin. At the end of our run we hit Gun Road and I felt very good, running 6:51 (previous best 7:08) for the uphill mile.

My weekend plans were centered around riding, but I had a desire to run enough to make a 65 mile run week. Those plans were put on hold after my 90+ mile ride of death on Saturday. I rolled out of the house at 7:30 for the 20ish miles up to the Saturday morning ride at TriSpeed. It was comfortably cool out, but was getting warmer. I made it up to Timonium, where I met Stanford and Zero, and a small but competent group of riders made their way out. I felt good for an hour, but then they ratcheted up the pace to beyond what I was comfortable riding at for 6 hours. I wouldn't classify myself as "dead" but rather, "life support" or "coma" or any combination of the words shredded, worked, punched out.

We made it back to TriSpeed after what seemed like an eternity (and it was only 43 miles from the store) and I still had, at minimum, 20 miles to go. I was aided by having a predominantly downhill ride home, but it was into the wind and let's be honest, net downhill still means you have to go up a few. I made it to the Falls Road Running Store and took the opportunity to grab some water and ate a few of Pete's Odwalla bars. That perked me right up and I felt better again - so when I got back into town I rode a few laps in Patterson Park to crank the ride over 90. I got a little color, and I was pretty beat by the time I finally crawled in the door.

I was not going to run then, just didn't seem to be prudent. Sometimes you have to think "is this going to help or hurt me" and I think had I run, I probably wouldn't have gotten out to ride on Sunday.

A moderately late night on Saturday (due in part to the time change) meant I needed to sleep in a little before I could ride. Plus it was dark at 7:30 I think so I wasn't going out. Unfortunately I waited until 11:15 to ride, and I wanted to be back by 4 for the UNC-Duke game. My legs felt better than yesterday, but my taint hurt pretty bad. The temp was good though, and there was no sun to speak of so it was comfortable. I made my way out Route 40 to Edgewood, and then turned up Mountain Rd to Route 1 into Bel Air. I descended into Rocks State Park and then put in an effort climbing out of it, and rolled along that terrible gravity-sucking road for like 16 miles back into Baldwin and Loch Raven Park.

I made it home okay but I was definitely tired, what I thought was a 75 mile ride turned into 82, so the two day total was pretty big. 11 hours on the bike in 2 days accounted for over half my week's hours. My bike also was riding like garbage, I don't know what was up - it was creaking a lot when I was out of the saddle. Maybe it's time to clean it.

Another lesson from this week is to not eat Powerbar Protein bars while riding. Protein is a terrible source of energy, as I've found out, because you can't access it quickly. I knew this, just didn't have anything else to take with me. Not to mention it's chocolate, so it melts. Don't bring things that can melt easily on your rides when it's warm out!

I was glad I got out to ride though, because a lot of times I'm an all-or-nothing rider. Since I had no excuse NOT to ride a lot this weekend, I had to do it. If I didn't plan on riding long, I'm not the type of person to just go out for 2 hours. I don't even know where you can really ride for just 2 hours around here anyway, other than my crappy Gunpowder loop.

So then to cap my week, I ran last night. I love running at night around Baltimore. As potentially dangerous as I'm sure running in any city after dark can be, I have come to enjoy my evening jogs around the Harbor. So much neon it's crazy. Last night was cool and windy, and I ran up to Fed Hill Park. Definitely the best view of Baltimore. I sat and contemplated for a minute before continuing on my way through the Harbor. 10:30 at night and the Harbor is jam packed. On a Sunday. Couldn't figure it out. I slowly crawled through Fells and then onto Boston and through the Square - which also was surprisingly bumping for a Sunday night. I ran crazy slow, but didn't care as I just need to shake the legs out.

Hoping for a good week this week, and now I've got to readjust to running in daylight during our evening runs.

1 comment:

alyssa said...

stopping to sit on a bench during a run is the new black.