It’s that time of year when I look around me and see others posting their weekend long ride or run mileage and notice how much more they are doing than I am. Even my Facebook memories showed me that I biked six more miles on my long ride this time last year. Eeeek!
For my long ride, John and I had this “brilliant” idea of starting our Ironman WI loops in Mt Horeb so we could visit the Grumpy Troll brew pub after. We planned to ride one loop together, and then I would go solo for the second one while he did a brick run. The first loop went well, I made it up Barlow Road, I felt relatively strong. We finished 42 miles in 2:45, which was 15 minutes slower than anticipated. It made me nervous about my second loop on my own, and I chickened out a bit. Plus, the idea of the trek from Verona to Mt Horeb being the last hour of my long ride was too much for me. Instead I had John pick me up at an intersection in between Verona and Mt. Horeb, which was less daunting in my mind.
If you haven’t noticed, I’m training for a fourth Ironman, and yes, these long distances are still scary and daunting.
I ended my long bike ride with 73.75 miles at 15.1 mph. I’m not sure where this stacks up in previous years bike rides, but I’m comfortable with this for a training pace. Of course I want to improve, but anything over 15 mph in training is decent for me.
After the ride, we didn’t even visit Grumpy Troll because John didn’t pack a change of clothes, and he was drenched in sweat from the humidity. I wasn’t disappointed because the idea of having a filling lunch there and then driving back to Madison from Mt. Horeb wasn’t appealing after all.
Saturday night I ended up in bed by 9pm, willingly. I was so wiped out from that bike ride and had a 2.5 hour run to look forward to Sunday morning. On Sunday morning I felt doubt and uncertainty with the start of the run. Of course my legs were tired, I biked for nearly 5 hours on Saturday. At the perfect moment, I saw my acquaintance Bob crossing the street heading my way. Bob is in his 70s, runs marathons and does triathlons. I met him a few years ago when I was a bank teller, he always came to my window. I detoured from my planned route and ran a mile with him to catch up.
That detour saved my run! I felt so much better after that mile with Bob. Doubt was lifted, I was moving and enjoying the scenes of downtown Madison. When I took walk breaks, I didn’t hit stop on my Garmin because I’m at that point in training that every step counts. I ended my run with 15 miles at a 10:13 average, including my walk breaks!
This is the point in training when there is no room for doubt. I just need to keep plugging away at the miles, let it be hard, and show up.