Sunday, October 09, 2011

Countdown to Ironman, Week 37: Training Buddies and Getting Psyched

What triathlete doesn't feel their blood stir while watching the Kona IM Championships? Even total couch potatoes have been known to rise up like Lazarus swearing "I will do that!" and for some, the Iron Fever is strong enough that they do, transforming their life in the process. For me this year, it's all part of the building excitement of my own coming Ironman. Although I do go through entire days where I don't think about the Ironman (not many, mind you), once you sign up for one it's never far from the front of your mind.

This weekend I got to watch the start of the Kona race down at our local triathlon store, The Multisport Advantage. Just the fact that a town our size (130,000 people) even HAS a triathlon store is a real blessing. But this one has some very cool stuff, including a Computrainer MultiRider setup with eight bikes all connected to one Computrainer screen. While they were having some technical difficulties with the computer on Saturday, I still got a taste of how fun it would be to train all winter with that kind of triathlete fellowship and fun. I already knew several of the folks there from training and racing here, and I think that would be the perfect antidote for trying to train in our cold and rainy winter weather. This photo is from their website so you can see their cool setup:

I'll definitely be hauling my bike down there as often as I can to get in some indoor miles without the typical drudgery of the trainer in my basement. They even have the Ironman Coeur d'Alene course so I can see exactly how much torture I'll be in for ahead of time (and hopefully be adequately prepared).

In other news, my swimming is starting to come back. While even a few weeks ago I found it hard to turn a 100 yards in less than 1:35, we did some sets on Saturday of descending 100's in groups of four, and I posted 1:28, 1:23, 1:20, 1:17 as my splits for each descending set. And that was leaving a full five seconds after my lane mate (even though he has the best draft in the pool, so it's mighty tempting to hug his toes). Toward the end of the workout, my left arm started fatiguing out, especially on the pull sets, but all in all it is holding up better and better each time. There are some days now when I forget it's not fully recovered yet in terms of strength, and those days should get more numerous over the winter, leaving me back to full force by spring.

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