Monday, February 06, 2012

On (to) Wisconsin -- Adapt and Focus

Sometimes your workouts don't go the way you want, but if you stick with it there's always an opportunity to get something positive out of it.

Case in point was my Sunday run. I'd had a solid week of training, and was really starting to feel some positive energy and improved fitness coming out of this base-building period. But as I started the run -- an easy-paced 10 miler -- something just didn't feel right. My form felt clumsy, my heart rate was way over target, and I just couldn't get into a smooth rhythm.

I tried pulling back on the speed and settling down, but after 3 miles I felt gassed, wobbly and worn out. I considered turning it around and calling it a day, but then I started thinking to myself -- in a long race there are going to be some tough patches to go through -- try to work through this one.

Time for a change in strategy. First get the heart rate down, second break the remaining 7 miles up into easy chunks. Get through this. I shifted into a run/walk mode with a 1-minute walk at the start of every mile. On the runs I counted steps to 50, then checked my heart rate to make sure I was keeping it easy.

It worked -- after a couple of miles I was into a good, smooth running rhythm and was still holding 9-minute/mile pace -- plenty fast enough on an easy day. And I got home satisfied -- I'd stuck to it; my 10 miles was in the bag, and I'd taught myself a valuable lesson in adapting and staying focused on the goal.

Weekly Totals:

Swim -- 2:10, 5950 yards
Bike --- 3:45, 65 miles
Run ---- 3:19, 23 miles
Strength/Core --- 1:20

30 weeks to go.

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