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First Team Meeting: It’s Getting Real

March 24, 2012

Team Rowfit Ironman Arizona, “before” shot. Left to right: Morgan, Eric, Nell, Doug, Dan, me!

We just had our first Ironman team meeting this morning (bright and early, 7 am at the gym on a Saturday!). We talked about training plans, race schedules, gear and equipment, uniforms, travel logistics, and of course, the celebratory brunch on Monday, November 19!

Part of me left this meeting pumped and excited. I’m training with a fantastic group of athletes, we’ve got a strong plan, this year is really going to push me in new directions, and I can do this. And part of me left this screaming “what am I getting myself into?” But I guess all of us who push ourselves at this level sometimes ask ourselves “remind me why I’m doing this.”

For now, we’re doing three team training sessions a week (plus of course individual workouts on our own). Sundays will be long cycling days; Mondays track work with possible swimming after; and Wednesdays swim days. When we pick up the training, we should also expect to do double workouts two or three days a week (totally fair and expected). Most of our long workouts will be on the bike, with runs no more than about 13 miles. I’ve trained for marathons with runs no longer than 8 miles, so I’m fine with that, even if a little nervous. We won’t be doing traditional brick workouts (long cycle followed by long run), but we will do at least a few short runs off the bike, just to get used to the transition from bike to run. But those will be later, when we’re doing rides outdoors in the suburbs, and the runs will only be a couple miles, just to get used to that bike to run transition. For the most part we’re following the philosophy that you train to run faster by running on fresh legs, not by doing brick workouts on tired legs.

In terms of race schedule, right now I’m registered for the Racine half Ironman and the Chicago olympic triathlon (olympic is longer than sprint but shorter than a half IM). Other people from Rowfit are also doing Racine, but most of the group training for the Ironman is doing the Dairyland Udder half Ironman instead. I’m thinking of adding the Udder half IM — I could really use the practice of long swims in a race setting! We’ll probably also add another olympic distance triathlon and maybe a century bike race. You realize the magnitude of what you’re training for when a century bike race, two olympic triathlons, and two half Ironmans are all “training races”!

We also talked about starting to test nutritional strategies now — something I would not have even thought about. Basically the idea is to use long training rides to also test out what nutritional products are going to work best for us. Something I need to add into my nutrition mix is electrolyte replenishment, and especially salt. I sweat a lot! I have some idea of what works for me, after several marathons, but I’ve never systematically tested food to optimize it, so taking that to the next level. Similarly, we need to start testing our clothes. We want to be sure we’re wearing whatever clothes we’ll be most comfortable in! We agreed that once we all have picked our race clothes, we’ll get them printed with a team logo, but that we’ll each pick our own clothes so that we wear what is most comfortable for us.

Long rides start on April 8th. Until then, I need to keep pushing my swimming.

239 days till Ironman Arizona.

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From → races, training

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