My training program has hit that section where I start knocking off some of the BIG volume, and start upping the intensities. Early in the week the bike efforts were ok, and the runs were actually pretty good. I ran some repeats on Tuesday and each one got progressively faster and faster. That, I thought, was a good sign. Thursday night brought a tempo run that I was NOT looking forward to after a rough morning on the bike. A friend of mine, John Megeff, who is fresh off competing in the Wild West Relay and the GoreTex Trans Rockies Run ( 2 person team runs the whole 120mi in 6 days across the Rockies and each person runs every bit of it!!) decided he wanted to join in the pain. Fortunately it went much better than expected, in large part due to John's help pacing. With that, the attempt at garnering some speed seemed to be moving along. Then Saturday came.
With fellow T3er, Bill, we met up with Jason May (another wicked fast local guy fresh off an Overall win at Malibu Oly) for some hard bricks. To say these were tough efforts is a drastic understatement. As usual, Bill brought the hammer down on the bike and sooner that I would like to admit, I was off the back. Jason stuck with me, but I think that was only out of pity. The run was nothing spectacular but I was able to stay on pace. Round #2 brought even further degradation. My heart rate was like a high schooler refusing to get out of bed in the morning. No matter how hard I tried I couldn't get it out of bed. Saved by the bell, we all headed out on the run together and I honestly thought about sitting down on the grass and calling it a day. But my ego got the better of me and I pushed through and actually felt halfway decent on the last mile. The rest of the day consisted of some painful legs, a mediocre ocean swim, and a fun BBQ for my buddy Craig's birthday.
Sunday was my last big brick. To be honest, on Saturday night and even Sunday morning, I thought there was NO WAY I was going to be able to do it. I even went back to bed after eating breakfast. But after 9.5hrs of sleep, I awoke feeling surprisingly improved, got my ass in gear and headed out on the bike. 5.5hrs, 95mi and a bunch of climbing, and I was off on my run. About 20mins in I felt a bonk coming on hard and fast, but I scaled back the pace, focused on my breathing, and kept the heart rate in the "fat burning" (GOD I hope so!!) zone. I thought I could actually feel my body switch over at the lower pace. I was glad to have it done. I was glad I did it in the heat of the day and didn't have any mental or physical issues like the day before.
Today is mellow but the rest of the week continues the speed switch with the OC International Tri this Sunday. I am looking forward to dialing in all my Kona gear and getting that one last race effort. Hopefully it will be a confidence booster and send me off to Kona content, confident, healthy and smiling.