Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Welcome back fatigue.

Last Friday I did something that I said I would do. I took a day off and I had a workout involving all four disciplines. Swim, Bike, Run...and fuel. With May 5th fast approaching, in addition to the normal, gradual build up in my training tolerance, I am also trying to reacquaint myself and my muscle memory with what a real triathlon is about.

So, what did I do. I got up, had a non-fibre, carb and protein breakfast. Drove to the pool. I swam for just over an hour, or 3,100 metres. This wasn't a race. I wanted to get some time and distance in. As it turned out, it was very busy and I had to change where I was swimming three times (deep tank, to open pool, to designated lanes). This was a great chance to get up, have some water (I usually don't hydrate during the swim if I can help it) and pee a few times (this I usually try to do before the canon goes off -- hard to pee and stroke at the same time).
Following the swim I took my time, washed off the chlorine, had some carb and protein and drove home. Got on my bike in the basement and proceeded to spin (low gear, high cadence - with some harder work variety thrown in) for just over 3 hours or 71kms. I watched The Bourne Identity.  Action Movies work best for mindless circles. I've tried drama...too much concentration required.

I had to change clothing twice, went through six towels and had two bottles of water; one gatorade; one disgustingly sweet, flat soadpop thing in the fridge; one pb&j sandwich; and one cliff bar. I thought about using my race-proven favourite, perpetuem, but I'm saving what I have for later training.

Photo copyright CJ Katz
After I got off the bike, I had a very tough decision to make. Every part of me wanted to just get on the treadmill, make it easy, comfortable. But I knew that getting on the treadmill would give me too many excuses to cut my planned run short.

So I dried off, got indoor run gear on, drank some water, had a banana and drove to the indoor track at the field house.

There began a one hour/10km run that was divided into 4 segments where I switched direction, stretched my foot and drank water. I had a gel at Hammer Gel at 30 minutes.

It was at about 10 minutes into the run that I got "that feeling" back.  Long course triathletes will know of what I speak. You are tired. you are sore. But your legs are working. All that swimming and biking did not limit your ability to move your legs and arms and propel yourself forward. I probably could have run for hours.

This familiar fatigue was the signal that I'm doing something right and that my body is responding well to moving from sport to sport without too much protest. I remember this feeling well as I overcame my intense desire to walk and started running up Main Street at Ironman Canada .

This Epic Training session as it has now come to be known demonstrates that I might just be ready for, at least finishing Ironman St. George in May. 


  1. It seems the ability to run after a loooong bike is what separates the true triathletes from those who just finish. I have a feeling that you will do much better than just finishing this time around. Only another 4 months of this pain though...

  2. Ummm, three months, Voyager. and February, despite being a leap year, is a short month!


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