The first (and the second) of the month slipped by without a proper April review. Life got a little busy and the little free time that I was on the computer was spent on trying to convince my Garmin FR 305 to finally upload my workouts. What a pain that was, but it's finally fixed now... Well partially, but it was time to move on.
Overall, April was a great month. After all, I raced my first half ironman... I sipped on the long distance koolaid and signed up for my second half ironman not even a week after the first one was in the books.
Between training and taper and racing and recovery and being out of town the last weekend in April, the volumes stayed fairly consistant overall, but shifted in between the swim, bike and run portion. I almost cracked the 100 miles of running per month in April... I wonder, if I ever had a 100+ mile running month... Gotta check into that.... Okay, checked into that and no. I never had a 100 mile running month. The highest running mileage so far was 97.58 miles in October of 2010 and I assume that was in preparation for the my very first half marathon. Gotta love having a log to keep up with this kind of useless information! ;-)
The 5 hours of hiking this month was all done on the Appalachian Trail on one day and it made me more sore than my half ironman. Sad but true. For days my calves and butt hurt like CRAZY. Finally, just in time for Sunday sprint race, things have calm down now. Phew!
The walking is as usual our doggy walk time. Karma acts like a spoiled brat, if we don't take her for a walk, because she has gotten so used to it.
To reflect a little on the whole half ironman training and trying to compare it with Mitchell training last year, I have to say that my head is in a completely different zip code right now or maybe the euphoria hasn't quite worn off yet. I do remember a time right after Mitchell, when I thought I would do it all over and more in a heart beat, but never followed through on it.
Mitchell training left me exhausted and a little burned out and made me really scared of tackling another big project like for example a half ironman. While I eventually came around and signed up for this race, I was dreading the amount of time I would have to put into the training. I am not so sure, what exactly is the difference between the two cycles, but I think, I can narrow it down on a couple of components:
- Last year when training for Mitchell, I was at the same time trying to keep up somewhat of a swimming and running regiment, because I was scheduled to jump into try season right after the bike race. This year my focus has been triathlons all along, which made the training more balanced and not as high in volume or at least it didn't feel as much.
- Even though I had been running all along through Mitchell training, my running suffered. It is the area, that I still need to improve most in order to play with the faster age group girls and it was dishearting to have to build up again instead of being able to continue improving.
- Mitchell training consisted of months and months being gone for at least one day out of the weekend and I felt so much pressure at missing out at home and not "pulling my weight". Terry and I talked a lot about this and this was certainly something, that I created more in my head than anything else, but at the time it was just adding stress. For the half, we've done all of our long rides and bricks together and that made a world of difference for me. I always said, that we shouldn't be preparing for a big races at the same time, so one of us can hold down the fort. I completely changed my mind on the matter and am now a true believer, that sharing this journey is much more valuable than keeping a clean house.