My longest brick training session ever was last season, a couple weeks prior to the 2009 Rochesterfest Tri. That brick was 2 hours 45 minutes. Yesterday was the start of a steady, but risky increase in not only running distance, but overall workout time. I figured I need to stress my body a little bit prior to getting on the bike, so I ran. This would serve two purposes: 1) warm-up so I could start on the bike a little closer to what it would feel like getting out of the water, 2) add some running mileage/time to the workout..
For the upcoming half iron, I not only have to train to ensure that I can last the duration of the race, but I also have to nail things down from a nutrional standpoint. Here's what I planned on for this workout session:
- about 20 oz of homemade sports drink: 1 part cherry/pomegranate juice, 1 part water, a couple ounces of lemon juice concentrate, little bit of sea salt
- 20 oz bottle of water
- 1 gel flask of homemade energy gel* (agave nectar, dates, zest of lemon, zest of lime, ground dulse)
- two homemade energy bars: blueberry-cocoa*, and mango coconut*
- 7 oz. of homemade sports drink for the second run + about 6 oz of water
- * recipes are from Thrive by Brendan Brazier, but I've linked sites that have them posted
Run 1- 23:38, 3.3 miles (7:09 pace)
I started at about 11:30am. I slathered on some sunscreen (sweatproof, sport-type stuff) just before I headed out because the sun had come out and it was getting hot. Plus, I knew I was going to be out for a couple/few hours so better safe than sorry. It was hot--maybe a little too hot. By the time I was 15 minutes into the run, I was shiny and wet. I ran at a steady, fairly easy pace, 3.3 miles.
Bike- 2 hrs 8 seconds, 39.45 miles (19.7 mph average)
I cruised into Rochester following the main stretch that the MedCity Marathon followed--Co 34. This was a nice smooth road with some gentle rollers and a long descent into Rochester. Once there, I cut over to a bike path to break things up. I drank only the sports drink from the aerobottle on the way, but then had the mango-coconut bar while riding easy on the bike path. My average speed until I hit the path was 23.0 mph. I wasn't working very hard to get to Rochester as I had a tailwind just about all the way there--logging 23 mph while only pushing zone 2 wasn't to difficult. The sweat was just pouring off of me throughout the ride. It would stream right down off my elbows on to my legs/knees, then find its way to my feet. That's a nice feel. I circled thru Roch then found my way back to the same route I followed to get there, minus the bike path. Now I had to climb up the long descent. I finished off the sports drink then emptied the waterbottle into the aerobottle and headed up the climb. I took it fairly easy and it went pretty well. Once at the top I started sucking down the gel. This particular homemade gel is pretty sweet and could have used more zest to tame it down, but it did the job. I never did get to the cocoa-blueberry bar, but should have.
Run 2- 47:21, 6.48 miles (7:18 pace)
I ran the same old trusty route that I knew would get me at least 6 miles: the sunrise-sunset trail that is just out my door (one end of it). I put the bike in the garage and knew the little flask of sports drink wasn't going to cut it on the run so I ran inside and drank about 6 oz of water, then I headed out. The sunrise trail is not the easiest of runs. From my house, you have to follow the road for about 1 mile before you hook up to the far side (the Sunrise section, but the trail ends just a block from my house so it works out nicely for a loop). The first mile and a half is flat. Then you have a couple easy rolling hills, but each brings you further down. Then you run a pretty long descent until you are at the river in Mantorville. Here you are at about 4 miles in. Mantorvilles elevation is 150-200 feet less that Kasson's. So, with that said, I now had to spend 2 miles on rollers--each one going up further than the last. By this time, it was about 90 degrees, sports drink was down to about 2 oz, but I had to press on--what else could I do...? The heat was bearing down, there was no shade, and I could feel that the sunscreens protectional properties were non-existant at this point. Vultures were circling overhead just waiting for me to drop. Briefly, the sun ducked behind the clouds and I swear the temp droppe 10 degrees, but within minutes, the sun was baking me again. Finally, I got to the end of the trail, a block from the air conditioning in my house, and had right around 3 hours 12 minutes on my watch. I figured I could put on 3 more minutes to make it an even 15 minutes. Down the street for a minute or so, then back.
When I was done, I was SPENT! I was just about right on the fueling, but since it was so hot, I lost more water than I planned for. As the runs get longer I'll use a running belt, which I was planning on for the 1/2 iron anyway. Next time I will take down that other bar too. The mix of the energy drink was perfect and the gel sat well too. Hopefully, at a higher intensity it won't cause any GI issues. I have been using homemade sports drink, gels and bars all season without any major issues so I hope that continues. As for the sunscreen--not strong enough for the time I was out, or I should have applied it again before the second run. Now I have a tri-top jersey outline on my back. Very stylish.
As for my big IM WI plans, those may be put on hold. I am barely able to train 9 to 9.5 hours a week--and that's a heavy week. A full IM would mean hitting 15-20 hours a week for a couple months prior to the IM (with some lower R&R weeks in there). Time will tell...