Sunday, September 27, 2009


One thing about training for an Ironman - I think I've learned to start listening to my body. Thursday morning I did my bike ride with intervals and felt fine. But shortly after lunch something wasn't right. I still can't quite pinpoint it, but I felt like some sort of illness was upon me. I got really tired all of a sudden - not just the "oh it's after lunch, I could go for a nap" but "I can't think straight and really need to just put my head down asap." I'm running short on vacation days with all my days off for the race and various events this year, so I really wanted my body to just push through a few more days - had to get through the weekend's workouts and then I could recover next week - during rest/recovery week! But after a quick chat with Artemis, who is much wiser than me, I realized the prudent thing was to call it a day and let my body get the rest it wanted. One perk of riding my bike to work regularly is that I am eligible for an emergency ride home when needed - so I got a free taxi ride home - my bike fit in the backseat (not the trunk though!). Less than an hour after I left work I was sound asleep. Slept til dinner time then went back to sleep for the night. I didn't feel a heck of a lot better in the morning, but I was still convinced I just needed a little more rest and then I'd be perfectly well again. Missing work Friday was kind of like missing the third day of work after my illness in early August - I felt like I could've made it through the day at work, but wasn't sure what kind of shape I'd be in at the end of the day. Since we're getting so close to IM, I selfishly decided to stay home Friday too. I just can't afford to end up sick at this point. Coach had me skip Friday's workout and we stayed in touch to decide about Saturday's run. I was extremely disappointed when I didn't feel 100% by Friday afternoon, but I woke up Saturday morning feeling totally better! Guess all I needed was about 24 hours of sleep in those 40 hours!

Saturday's long run was another LRE (longest run ever - Lauren's new acronym) - 17 miles on the schedule. I just got a new HRM/bike computer, but I didn't feel up to RTFM or going to the bike shop to have them set it up on my bike, so I didn't get to use the new tech on Saturday. Predicted high was over 100. I used a stretch of the river trail recommended by Jennifer. Wow, there were so many people out running and cycling at 8:30am on Saturday. It was awesome. The runners were all correctly facing bike traffic. The cyclists shouted "runners up" to their friends behind them so they'd all be aware of impending runners. The dirt section next to the paved bike path was wide enough and flat enough to run on. Oh, it was marvelous. I'm going to use this stretch on my future long runs, too. I used my new IT Band wrap for the first time, and ran on the dirt whenever possible. I had NO IT band pain!!!!! It was awesome. I ended up running 17.3 because it felt so good. I had a great time. Oh, and I used my ipod on a run for the first time in a long time. That may have helped a bit. Thank you Madonna, ABBA, The Eagles, and Bob Marley for creating songs worth repeating a few times in a row.

The first few miles of the run were a little rough mentally. I think that's always the case for me though. (Must remember this for Florida.) I look at my watch and feel like I've been running for so long but it's only been a mile or two. But after five or six miles the miles seem to fly by. (I think "Just Like a Prayer" is what really got me going. Please let the run aid stations play good music in Florida!) It also helped mentally that I ended up doing an out-and-back instead of having to run around in circles at the end to finish my mileage. (Although I did a little bit to try to stay in the shade.) I probably had fewer water stops than in my previous long runs because I used two new 10.5-oz bottles on my Amphipod in place of one 8 oz bottle. The extra weight didn't bother me. I didn't pause my watch for my bathroom/water stops. I usually do, but I've finally realized that's just stupid because time doesn't stop during the race. (Although I will be able to keep moving when I need water thanks to volunteers.) So with all those things factored in, my average pace was 13:08 min miles. So, yes, I stayed home from work on Friday because I wasn't feeling well, and then I went out and ran for almost 4 hours on Saturday morning. I'm a jerk, what can I say? I skipped everything else on my to-do list for Saturday though, including a friend's bbq. I figured I probably needed to just stay home and rest for the day.

This morning I did my ride - short and sweet. Just 42 miles, with the middle 20 at half iron race pace. This time I rode 18.6mph for that stretch. I used my new Rudy Project sunglasses for the first time, which meant using my contacts for the first time in a few years. That felt a little trippy but after about 20 minutes I was really enjoying the extra peripheral vision and the extra coverage the Rudy Project sunglasses give me compared to my prescription sunglasses. The whole ride felt good, although I wished I'd had the energy yesterday to get my bike to the bike shop. I need to have them unsqueeze my saddle. They pinched the front ends together when I complained it was a little wide (only noticeable for the first mile of a brick workout). I've been missing the cutout in the front and I think I'd rather be comfortable on the bike for a few extra hours and be mildly uncomfortable for the first mile of the run feeling like I just got off a horse.

So I'm still listening to my body. I have tomorrow as a vacation day - my husband's new work schedule gives him Monday and Tuesday's off, so I wanted to hang out with him. I kind of want to go to work tomorrow since I don't like being short on vacation days and hadn't planned on using a day on Friday. But I still have all these things to do - bike shop trip, plus Dr appt, etc - and I can't figure out how else to get them done. I guess it's kind of like sticking to the coach's workout plans. I stopped running at 17.3 because I wanted to follow the plan more than I wanted to see how far I could run. Today I felt mildly tempted to run after my bike, but a brick wasn't on the schedule. I can't just go around doing more than is planned because eventually it's going to catch up to me.


  1. Gotta listen to that body. Mine has been acting up lately too, plus all kinds of gunk going around.

  2. Glad you are feeling better. Sounds like you had an awesome run too - congrats on your LRE!

  3. Thanks Anne! Bob, you just reminded me - I need to get my flu shot this week. Since it's a recovery week I can afford to deal with any side effects.