Monday, January 18, 2016

Muskoka 70.3 base build week 3

Week 3 = peak week! How'd it go?

Monday: rest
Tuesday: TR Hunter (2 hours); 2200m swim
Wednesday: 9k tempo run with 5k @ 5:01/km
Thursday: 1600m swim; TR Cumberland (1:15)
Friday: EZ 7k run; TR Tunnabora (1 hour)
Saturday: 23k long run; 2250m swim
Sunday: TR - Town Hill (2:45); 8.6k brick run

Oh come on, I couldn't have swum or run one minute more?

I'd say that went pretty well. Feeling good, strong, and mostly really really hungry. I seem to have burned quite a few calories.

I did my Tuesday swim at a different pool than usual. I'd always sort of vaguely known that pools can be 'fast' or 'slow' but didn't realize just how big an impact various pool design factors can have. I couldn't quite believe some of my lap times, but a little googling afterwards cleared up the mystery - the Tuesday night pool has gutters, while my usual pool doesn't. Those can make a big difference in how the water gets reflected back at you while you swim. It's nice to know where I can go to feel fast! Even if it does mean having to totally recalculate my paces in a pool-specific way.

Wait, I was doing all those sub 2 minutes? What? Yay for better pool design!
(this also explains why I often felt really slow when swimming in the outdoor pool in the summer - that pool has an extremely shallow shallow end - you can literally scrape your hand on the bottom if you reach a little too deep doing front crawl - which also makes for a 'slow' pool. Obviously it's not that I'm actually a slow swimmer. Clearly it's the pool.)

I was able to convince myself to get back on the foam roller a couple of times last week, which was very good for me. My hips have been a bit cranky while sitting at my desk at work, but the roller is like magic for that. I've learned the key points are really my lower back and my glutes. I do think, however, that I should try and get in some yoga for runners, because that's also really good for my hips. Another thing to find time for! (this longer, deep release version is even better...but, longer.)

Picture time!

5k of tempo, done! Super proud of myself for sticking with that one for the full 5k with no breaks. I think that's the first time I've made it through that one without stopping at 3k.

Safety LED for an early morning run. Lots of reflective stuff on my gear, too. #staysafe

Impromptu strength workout on Friday night helping the kids roll giant snowballs. Those suckers get heavy. Cat for scale. Bear in mind he's a bit of a chunkster, so that is one large snowball.

Back to training on the ATB route! Awesome long run with Sam and Nicole this week.

Hard training = keeping an eye on the resting heart rate. All good.

A couple of things have come up a few times lately, so here's answers to two occasionally asked questions:

1. Are you sure you aren't training for an Ironman?

Yes, I'm sure. No full Ironman for me this year.Yes, the training hours are a little bonkers, but this is all laying groundwork for a) doing some kick ass half irons this summer and b) a full Ironman in the future. But not this year.

2. How do you find the time?!

Now there's a good question, because this time last year I wouldn't have thought I could have found the time for this. But I've been building up to it for a while, and the time has been carved out of my schedule gradually. You don't, generally, just wake up one day and decide 'I'm going to start training 13 hours a week'. It's a process.

Reason #1 I can train is that guy back there.

I'd say for me it largely comes down to three things. 1. A super supportive husband who is easy to negotiate with to free up time for both of us to get our workouts done (colour coded spreadsheets are sometimes involved). 2. I have a short commute to work (15 minutes), so I'm not losing a large part of my week there. 3. My kids are old enough to entertain themselves and not get into trouble while I'm on the bike trainer, and they aren't currently involved in time consuming activities. Right now they are in Girl Guides and swim lessons, which are pretty easy to schedule around.

There's other factors, like we don't have cable so I don't really watch TV (other than Netflix on the trainer), but those three are the big ones.

Now, as much as I enjoyed last week, I'm pretty glad this week is a recovery week. The house pretty much goes straight to hell while the husband and I are both training hard, and a deep clean is desperately needed. Recovery week = time freed up to clean up this dump. Lower standards on some things, like housekeeping, is key to doing a lot of training, really.

What's a recovery week look look right now?

Monday: rest
Tuesday: swim; TR Goddard (60 minutes)
Wednesday: easy run (8k)
Thursday: swim; TR Looking Glass (80 minutes)
Friday: easy run (8k); TR Slide Mountain (60 minutes)
Saturday/Sunday: Long run (16-18k); swim; Trainerroad Pioneer (60 minutes) + 6k brick run

You know. Recovery. Totally. HA.


  1. Amazing work, Emma! That is such a huge load of training in a week. Its a part time job! Also, no wonder you can't keep yourself full with all of those burnt calories. Congrats on making it to recovery week. HAHA.

  2. It's great that you have such a strong support system to help you get your training in. That's awesome. Another great week and enjoy the recovery.