FORGING IRON | WEEK 08

My first triathlon is coming up in two weeks, and let's just say I'm a little nervous.

MONDAY

Kicked off the week with upper body training with David.

I've definitely gained more muscle in my back and shoulders since I started training with him, which should help me a lot when swimming. This week we worked on chest, doing movements like incline bench presses, front raises, and so many damn push-ups.

TUESDAY

As usual, Tuesday was spent being tortured by Jahmale.

We started the workout with a superset of squat jumps using the cable machine for resistance and straight leg deficit deadlifts. Ouch. From there we moved to a superset weighted box step-ups and weighted box lunges. And just in case I had any strength left in my legs, we finished the day with a superset of weighted roll backs followed by box jump-overs.

I haven't done cardio yet this week and I really need to run. Because, you know, there might be some running involved in a triathlon. If I can feel my legs, I will run tomorrow morning.

WEDNESDAY

Well I can feel my legs but I'm exhausted, so I'm taking this morning off. I haven't gotten much sleep recently, and the sleep that I have gotten hasn't been all that great. But, tired me is not a very fun version of me to deal with, so sleep it is.

THURSDAY

Oh the pain. You don't really start feeling the effects of a tough workout until two days after it happens, which is affectionately called the DOMS, or delayed onset muscle soreness. It's one of those things that leads you into a false sense of security before smacking you back to reality. Leg days are the worst for this, because the level of soreness in your legs makes it really REALLY difficult to walk, let alone run.

So yeah, I didn't run today either.

And I didn't get time to work upper body this afternoon either, because of other circumstances at work. Which means I took two days off in a row. Not cool.

FRIDAY

Finally, cardio! I went for a run this afternoon in the brutal heat, and my pace was terrible, but I don't even care. It felt so good to get back out and running, not only because of my triathlon coming up but also because my training plan for the Chicago Marathon starts this week so it's good to not get behind.

I took a quick shower then headed to the gym to work with Deano on core. I should have went running earlier than I did, because I only had an hour between when I finished my run and when we started training which wasn't enough at all. Still, I was able to make it through this workout too and I feel good.

All this working out has me exhausted by 9:00pm though. Is this what being an old man is like?

SATURDAY

I slept in today and it was everything I could have ever dreamed of.

After I enjoyed every last moment of being lazy, it was time to head to the bike trail for a long workout of cycling and running. I felt great on the bike, gutting out 30 miles and averaging around 18mph. I did run out of water 10 miles from the end so I had to make a couple stops to fill up. It was so hot, with the heat index easily clearing 100, and of course the first two water stations I stopped at were completely dry. Not fun.

I got back to my car, secured my bike, changed shoes, and took a couple minutes to re-hydrate and rest before I started on the run. Thankfully there was some bad weather nearby so there was a lot of cloud cover and some cooler winds. I ran so much easier and smoother than I have in a very long time because of this. Florida summers make it so difficult to breathe properly thanks to the humidity and scorching heat, but the afternoon storms help ease that pain a little bit. I was able to run almost 3 miles non-stop, which is really good for me considering I had just done 30 on the bike. I finished 3 more miles for a total of 6 miles of running, and then headed home for a long shower and relaxing night with my couch and a movie.

SUNDAY

Today was awful. Really horrible.

I drove down to Siesta Key Beach, which is where my first triathlon is being held in two weeks. I needed to get some more time swimming in the open water, and then run on the sand because whoever the genius is that is organizing this race thought it would be a great idea to have people run a 10k on sand. Seriously, what the hell?

The water was really, really rough today. My Garmin says I swam almost 1,000 yards but I'm sure it was less than that in actual distance because I was dealing with 2-3 foot swells at times. I swam parallel to shore, which means the waves were hitting the side of my body with full force. So many times I would turn my head to breathe and catch a mouthful of salt water. This makes me really nervous for the race itself. I probably swam on a day that was too rough even for experienced swimmers, but still. You always want to feel strong and totally prepared when a race is less than a month out, and this experience really brought me back down to earth.

After I finished the swim and crawled back to dry land, I ran down the beach and back for a total run of 3.7 miles. I tried to stick to the firm and compacted sand as much as possible because it seriously is impossible to run on soft sand. There were times I couldn't avoid it, though, as the water had washed away the shore at spots and left only the loose sand.

I need to do this same workout again next weekend, but hopefully the water isn't as rough. This was really discouraging.

WEEK 08 SUMMARY

Not as much race-specific training as I would have liked this week, so week 9 will need to be much better as I get closer to my first triathlon. Two weeks...