Monday, May 13, 2013

An Impromptu Easy Week

I knew this past week was going to be busy.  I had a lot going on at work as well as socially but I was determined to keep on track with my training.  I had planned and organized everything, including my meals.  I started the week off on a good note with a post work ride.  It was short but it was intense.  After that though, things started to fall apart.   Work was super busy and I honestly didn't feel the motivation to actually get out and DO anything.

When that happens, I know it's time for a break.  When I mentally check out, that's the first signal that perhaps I've been doing a bit too much.  So, instead of Thursday night run group, I went out with the old "Tri-girls" gang and stayed out way past my bedtime.  I figured there was no way I was getting my swim in but I didn't really care.  I had a blast on Thursday.  Sometimes a little break in the routine is just what you need.  I slept in on Friday morning and had a nice leisurely paced morning.  No rushing to the pool.  I thought if I had a chance on Friday I'd nip out at lunch for a run, but that didn't happen.  I didn't sweat it.  I knew that this weekend, I'd get back on track.

Sure enough G and I dragged out buts out the door despite the cold grey weather and met our friend Pat out at King & Keele to go for a ride.  I haven't ridden out there in years.  Probably since the last time I did Ironman, which would be 2008.  I can't believe how much it has changed.  Nicely paved roads and a bike lane along Keele which was awesome.  I was ill prepared clothing wise but I sucked it up and rode anyway.  I figured that once we hit the hills along Weston Road I'd warm up.
Cycling capris, & pink argyle compression socks.  Add to that some neoprene booties and voila..instant style.  Had the fashion people seen me I would have been arrested for sure.
 Sure enough by the time I hit the "warm up hills" on Weston Road I had worked up a pretty good sweat.  I still had to climb Strawberry Hill - a three tiered climb that doesn't really look like much when you get up to it but it somehow manages to kick you in the ass every. single. time.  I was gasping for air by the time I got to the top.   I looked back to see if the guys were coming and I didn't see them.  I thought for sure they'd be right behind me.  I sat there for a little while longer.   And then a little while longer.  I crossed to road and contemplated riding back down to see if they were ok.  I instagrammed stuff and contemplated some more.  I really didn't want to have to ride back up that hill.   I could see a couple of guys coming up the hill but they didn't look familiar.  The first guy sees me and as he is gasping for air he says "oh you're the girl with the pink socks...the guys had a flat".  Ah.  That's what I had figured.  So I sat and waited.  Shortly thereafter G comes huffing and puffing up the hill and we start riding towards the descent.

And this is where I just about crapped my pants.

Keep in mind I have crappy gloves on, improper sunglasses (aviators because I was too disorganized to go upstairs and find my proper cycling glasses) and I had been sitting still for a good 15 - 20 minutes.  This descent is pretty much straight down a very steep hill.  My eyes immediately start watering and I start shivering.  All while trying to maintain control of my bike in the wind.  I pumped the brakes as I went down but my heart was in my throat.  Mainly because I couldn't see a damn thing.  Normally I'd get into a tuck and give 'er but not down this hill.  

My legs were jello from squeezing the living daylights out of my top tube.  Just as my heart rate settled down, it was time to climb again.  So I start grinding up this hill and then I realize that G isn't there anymore.  I turn around as I get to the top and he had slowed down and was looking for Pat, who was nowhere to be found.  So we rode easy for a while and then G said he was going back to find him.  That meant climbing UP that horrible descent.


To say that I almost barfed up a lung on that climb would not be an understatement.  But I had to remind myself that like in running, hills are speed work in disguise.   We found Pat, who had gotten another flat, halfway up Strawberry Hill.  With the flat fixed we opted to start heading back to the car as Pat didn't have any spare tubes left.  The ride back was much nicer.  We managed 50km in 2 hours.  Not terribly speedy but that wasn't really the point.

Sunday I actually skipped my morning swim and decided to head out for a long run.  My first long run since Boston and my first in 10 days.  TEN DAYS!! That NEVER happens!! See, I told you I needed a break!  My plan was to run 15km.  It was super windy which made it a little tougher that I would have liked but it really felt good to be back out.  My left glute was still fairly bothersome but I think the massage I had today has helped sort that out.  We'll see how I feel when I head out on Thursday.  I'm going to give myself a couple of days to recover before I start pounding the pavement again as this was a pretty deep and really somewhat painful massage.   I want my legs to be as close to normal as possible (whatever that may be) before I start to beat them up again.  So here's to a few more easy days before the insanity starts all over again.

Do work easy weeks into your training?  

Do you have certain tell tale signs that you're on the verge of overtraining?

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