Training week 30 of 36 had 16 1/2 hours of training in it. I will admit that this week was the toughest training week thus far. It was mentally challenging more than physically challenging. It took a huge effort to get through the smaller mid week workouts. I had a pretty solid training week which ended with a ½ marathon race. Before I get into discussing my week I wanted to blog a little bit about a person who has gone through a life changing transformation.
I signed up for a half marathon to support my neighbor who is currently in training for his first full marathon. I mentioned the race to a friend of mine who I knew had been working his butt off in the gym and had put some miles on the treadmill. I asked him to come out and run a 5k while my neighbor and I ran the half marathon. I knew he could easily do a 10k but, since this would be his first running race I felt he would be more accepting to the idea of running a 5k.
He agreed and come out to run on Sunday and knocked out the 5k. He did a fantastic job finishing 16th over all and 2nd in his age group. Okay I know what most of you may be thinking. So this was a guy who got into the gym trained and did a 5k, big deal.
I did mention life changing transformation, right? Well you see this individual started his transformation back in 2009 and by 2010 he lost 60 pounds. That is an awesome accomplishment. Losing 60 pounds is not an easy task. He kicked up the intensity level and workouts in 2011. Nine months later he had knocked out an additional 160 pounds! Yes, that’s right he’s dropped a total of 200 pounds in less than 3 years with most of them happening in 9 months.
I think it’s safe to say that this person has been through a life changing transformation. I’m very proud of his accomplishment and have encouraged him to continue on with his amazing journey. I think he is well on his way to maintaining. I can see him already making that crossover to living a healthy life style and not considering what he is doing dieting. I’m not a fan of “dieting” it’s a word that is frowned upon by many. There is a cloud of negativity which surrounds that word when it is used.
For those of us who want to loose a few pounds and live a healthier life. It is possible no matter how far from your goal you may be. I hope you can take my friend’s experience and use it as motivation to reach your own accomplishments. I know I will.
Here’s a little wrap up of my week.
As I mentioned it was hard for me to get it done during the week. I spoke with a couple of friends who were experiencing a similar week. I had another high volume weekend coming and I had signed up for a half marathon. At this point of my IM training I think the time on the bike is meant to get me mentally ready for the race.
I had the half marathon in the back of my mind on Friday. I was faced with a dilemma. I wanted to get a solid workout in on Saturday but, I also wanted to have a solid training race on Sunday. I felt my conditioning was very good and that I could make it work. I put in a 4 hour computrainer ride, 50 minute run and 30 minute recovery swim on Saturday. I made it a point to start at 5 a.m. to be able to have as much recovery time as possible for the next day’s hard training run.
I had a couple of goals for Sunday’s half marathon. I wanted to make sure I pushed myself beyond my IM marathon pace, I wanted to finish either at or faster than a 1 hour 30 minute time and I want to make sure my neighbor completed his run. This was my neighbor’s first half marathon. We spoke about the run and came up with a strategy. It was a chance for him to work on his nutrition and liquid intake.
Right before the race started I made my way to the front of the pack. I wanted to latch on to a faster runner to help me push. I also did not want to burn out so I placed a 6 minute mile pace limit on myself. The gun went off and immediately a runner bolted away from the pack. I decided to stick with him for as long as I could. We hit the one mile mark and had put in a 5:36 mile. It was way to fast for what I wanted to do. I slowed it down and tried to stick to my plan.
I knew I had a long workout the day before and I wanted to get through this race without killing myself. As the race went on I stuck to a pace and ended up really enjoying the run. I was presently surprised that I was not suffering or wishing it was over. It was a bit hot and humid but, nothing compared to the 100 plus degree weather I ran in earlier in the summer so I was perfectly fine with the conditions.
I was coming up on mile 10 and I was approaching an aid station. I yelled for water because the volunteers were not looking at runners heading back towards the finish. When I called out for water my right calf started to cramp up. It wasn’t bad but, I felt it warm up and knew bad was coming. As I grabbed a cup of water I noticed a police motorcycle pulled out in front of me. It appeared that he was slowing down and looking back waiting for something. Man did I feel like a goof. I finally realized he was looking for me. I was sitting in 2nd place overall and had a police motorcycle escort with less than 3 miles to the finish.
I thought that was way cool but, at the same time I knew I was on the verge of cramping. I thought to myself this may be the one and only time I get an escort in a race do not mess it up. It was gut check time and I just could not let this slip away. My calf muscles did cramp up at mile 11 and 12 but, I worked through them. I did slow down a bit for the last couple of miles but, I tried not to slow down to much. I had no idea how far back 3rd place was.
I was about a fourth of a mile away from the finish and I heard another police motorcycle pull up behind me. I though I was getting passed by 3rd place. I turned for the home stretch and kicked it up a notch. Right before the finish line I cramped up one last time. I was laughing inside at that point. I was just happy to have crossed the line with goals accomplished.
After the lady removed the chip from my shoe I went back for my neighbor. I found him and jogged back to the finish line with him. He did really well considering the warmer condition and though his ham cramped up with less than a fourth mile to go he was able to work it out and jog it through the finish line.
accomplished for him. Mission
I ended up finishing 2nd overall in half marathon. I also walk way with a PR of 1 hour 22 minutes. After this weekend I’m confident that my endurance is where it needs to be. I have three more events before IM Florida. All of which I am using as part of my training. I will continue to stay on course with my workouts and not taper for any of these smaller events. I think it’s working for me thus far.
The human will is very powerful and when used to its fullest potential miraculous things can happen. I feel very blessed and fortunate to know of individuals who take that will and just simply get it done.
As always feel free to email me of you have any questions, comments or random thoughts. If you have a story to share I’d love to hear about it.