Sunday, October 21, 2012

And the Training Continues!

Well my 2012 triathlon season is over. I still can't believe I'm going to compete at the World Triathlon Championships in London!

Now time to focus on maintaining and building my fitness over the winter months. My coach gave me a little time off after Pine Pitch but now I'm right back into it. Last week started the preparation period which will last 8 weeks with a field test in the middle at 4 weeks. These two weeks consist of two workouts a day; swimming in the morning, like early, like I'm in the water at 5:30am and run or bike after work and bricks (bike to run) on the weekend.  Let me pause here and fill you in on life .....

For the past few years I've been living in two places; summer cottage at work with views of the Presidential Range, Great Glen Trails biking and running system in my front yard and not having to drive to work. In the winter it's been a cute little place w/ a garage, views of the other side of the Presidentials, very low rent with heat included. Unfortunately Randolph has been rented to another tenant and the summer has ended and I have not found a place for the winter. I was a little busy qualifying for Worlds ;). Luckily I fell into a house sitting job for the month of October. Also very lucky I met a great girl Leah who was living in Littleton and working locally which gave her a very long commute. I invited her to house sit with me to lessen her commute and to give her a chance to look at apartments in the area.  Well we've become pretty good friends and now we are tag teaming apartment viewings! So my days are usually early morning swim workouts, work, look at apartments then train for an or two, eat, sleep..... repeat. Can't wait until we are settled.

Back to training, I found a great deal on a Power Tap and have been training with it. It measures cadence, wattage, HR, torque, speed, distance and all the goodies that a regular computer has. My workouts have been very specific using this device and very different than "just" riding for an hour or climbing hills with my heart rate in different zones.
Example workout: 1 hour EM(Endurance Miles heart rate between 110-156) Warm up 10 min EM then 5 mins at MT (muscle tension building specific strength) I have to be in the hardest gear and not stand up. Cadence between 50-55 keeping wattage steady. Repeat that five times with 5 min recovery (easy spin). Keeping the wattage steady is very hard. It means each pedal stoke is done with the exact amount of pressure EACH time the crank goes around. After I'm done I can download all the data and see how smooth each interval is. The chart below shows my second time doing the above workout. The tops of the yellow lines should not be as varied. That's what training is all about learning new things and I can't wait to compare this chart to a future one.

I've also joined a Masters Swim class taught by Maury McKinney. See one of his many accomplishments here

He has advocated and raised money to have an aquatic center built in North Conway. For now he is teaching all types of swim classes at the White Mountain Aquatic Center from the New England Inn pool. The pool is 40 ft long by 20 ft wide with 3 lanes, but it's beautiful!

Before joining Maury's swim class, I have done most of my swim workouts alone. Now my coach is swimming with me 3 mornings a week and I'm in a class! Swimming is much more exciting and I'm not the fastest in the class which gives me more incentive to swim harder. I can't wait to see how much I progress through the winter. I'm also planning to compete in a few swim meets which will keep me fresh swimming at race pace.

I cannot thank my coach, Steve Vosburgh enough for all his time in planning my weekly workouts and the time he's taken to meet with me for anything; field tests, issues with downloading data, fitting me to my bike, installing my Power Tap. I could not ask for a better coach!