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Killer Hill Session on Indoor Trainer

It's a great day for a short one hour trainer session and i've put together a workout that really required attention to cadence and heart rate. It's also a peak training week so i wanted to add in a hill session because next week is prep for race week.  I chose a program that would require me to monitor my Garmin closely partially to see if i have the screens set up in a way thats easy to view a interval workout.  In the end i did change the set up on my intercal screen to incluse av cadence, av hr, av speed, and time per interval.  Teh more i use the Garmin 310xt the more i like it.  The download file showed the av/max hr, speed and cadence for each interval. Started with a 10 minute warm up and then the plan is to follow a progression of intervals set at increasingly difficult cadences while maintaining a relatively high HR.  My heart rate goal for the intervals was 153-157bpm or 8-12 beats below lactate threshold.  This is a three part workout.

For the first part i started with a 5 min interval at 60-65cadence followed by a 10 min interval at 50-55reps, followed by an easy 5 minute recovery at about 80rpm and hr av of 139bpm.

The next set is 6x 2-3  minutes at 40-50rpm with a minute rest in-between.  For the rest period my HR dropped only to 145 or so as i retained a fairly low cadence and did not want to take too much time to regain the resistance and pace needed to bring my HR back up to sub lactate level.

The last set i threw in at the last minute.  There was no rest after the last 2 min interval and i reduced the resistance throughout the following progression while keeping my HR at sub lactate level.  2 min at 57rpm, 2 min at 66rpm, 2 min at 79 rpm followed by a 5 min cool down.

This workout kept me interested the whole time.  The next time i will take the second set and add a minute to each interval but keep the rest period at 1 minute.  Great 1 hour session for improving strength and climbing position.  I remained in the aero position thought the workout.

DC Nations Tri- Recovery Week

This week i just took everything as it came and didn't plan a thing.  Overall i trained  only 8hrs 45 minutes and every workout felt good. Monday, the day after the race, was a beautiful fall day.  I had a light client load and just couldn't help but go for a run.  I ran with no plan at all.  Ended up running along the promenade in Brooklyn Heights, into Borough Hall park and then about a third of the way up the bridge before i turned around.  Kept my pace slow at 9.25mm average and low HR throughout.  Don't know when the last time i went for a run less than 45 minutes.  Spent a good 15 minutes stretching after.

On Tuesday i had some time between clients and put in just 20 minutes of weights.  Focused on back and shoulders.  In the evening i rode my bike to prospect park for 3 laps.  I had to meet a client for a training run so went early to get in a short ride.  Total time was one hour.  During the ride i witnessed a cycling accident.  Another cyclist stopped first to assist and then i stopped.  The guy rode right into another cyclist who was intersecting the road and did not look before he crossed.  The injured rider landed on his shoulder and hit his head.  Wasn't wearing a helmet.  When I arrived the other cyclist was asking if he could call an ambulance for him.  He responded negatively.  I stuck around to make sure he was coherent and didn't need immediate First Aid.  After about 5  minutes he started to feel the pain and listened more to our suggestion to get help.  I asked how his shoulder felt as he was becoming aware that the multiple scrapes and slight head injury were not the problem, but that his shoulder was.  I asked if he would show me his shoulder.  He had a bump, just like mine after my accident but not as severe.  Looked to me like he had separated his shoulder.  At that point i really encouraged him to at least allow an ambulance to come and check him out.  That he didn't have to necessarily go to a hospital (i found out that he didn't have insurance) but if the medics suggested it he should not ignore this injury.  I told him a bit about my cycling accident and resulting separated shoulder.  Didn't want to freak him out but could see in his eyes he just didn't want to deal with what was happening.  I really felt for him and understood what was going on in his mind.  Once he agreed to an ambulance i left.  The police had arrived and i had done all i could plus i was late for meeting my client.  Wish i had thought to give him my business card because i know he's going to want someone to talk to once his diagnoses is made.

Wednesday i did a light workout in my gym.  Worked with the trx, cables and free weights.  Mostly back but some shoulders and chest as well.  Spent a good 15 min on abs and started with some shoulder PT work.

Thursday i had time between clients again so did a circuit of back and shoulder work.  5 exercises and 3 sets.  Felt easy which was my plan for the week.  After my clients i went for a run downtown because i wanted to do a flat run.  Included some fartlek work but really felt easy although my average pace was a bit faster than i would have expected for such an easy run.  Pace was 8:52mm and my av hr was only 152.  Usually a flat run at 152bpm is more like a 9:10mm.  Based upon how my legs are feeling and resulting HR my body is recovering really well from the race.  Nice to see.

Friday i took my bike out to prospect park for some laps.  I wanted to use a Garmin feature called mark and lap.  At a given point at the top of the park i set this feature and the GPS is supposed to mark that spot so that each lap starts and finishes at that point and you don't have to manually pres a lap button.  Found that only half of the laps got marked.  Not sure what's up with that but will try this setting again.  I completed 7 laps.  Average HR was 145bpm, speed about 17, cadence about 72.  Cadence was actually faster.  Noticed that when i'm on a steep downhill and don't pedal that the 0 cadence gets averaged in for the ride.  Dont' really like that, but don't think there is a way to adjust that.  The last two laps i took significantly slower than the first 5 (was feeling fatigued).  Took the big hill at a 50-60rpm pace.  Took it easy going home.  Overall rode 1:46min over 27.84 miles.  spent a lot of time looking at the 4 screens i have set up on the garmin to see if i like the way i've programmed the data to appear.  Think it shows everything i want in a good pattern.  Easy to read as long as it's bright.

Saturday was my first run designed to test out a pace for my next race.  The half iron in two weeks ends with a 1/2 marathon.  I have not run a half marathon race in two years so don't have a good  history to judge a pace for this race.  My thought has been that i should be able to manage a pace similar to my last marathon after finishing a 56 mile bike ride.  This of course is dependant on HR as well, but the course is going to be really flat.  So i set out over the Brooklyn bridge to the flat terrain of the west side.  Set my garmin for a new program with a warm up and then two 30 min intervals.  Once i got to the west side and could run without traffic i set the first interval working a little slower 8:25pace  and planned to pick up the pace about 10 sec for the turn around.  After the 30 minutes i took a 30sec break, had a gel and turned around.  The second 30 minute was at 8:19 mm average.  My average HR was 162bpm for both directions (the first half was against the wind).   This was a good test.  For the half iron run i should be able to manage 13plus miles at around 168bpm no problem, so i'm thinking if i start a bit slower (maybe 8:30 pace) and can add a little speed after 3 miles or so and actually exceed my last marathon pace of 8:25.  The real question is how to stay motivated during all that without an Ipod.  I never run without it.  Something i guess i should practice next week.

Sunday i finally fit in a swim.  Since the Riverbank pool is closed for maintenance for the whole month my only training options is with TNYA, my masters swim team.  Often not a real productive workout but today was pretty good.  Trains were messed up.  It took me an hour and a half to get to the pool and changed so i missed the 15 min warm up.  Most of the workout was freestyle intervals.  My stroke was strong and long.  Felt real relaxed until about the last 10 minutes of the 1:05 workout.  Skipped the last set of butterfly intervals.  I don't do butterfly, plus i was freezing.  It's going to be impossible to get in any swims on my own before the half iron so will just focus on getting in a team swim one time each week.  Just can't pull off two swims a week because i won't get home before 10:30pm from the workouts on week days and i have to get up between 5 and 5:30 am to meet clients.  Would like to get in another weekend open water swim but will be out of town next weekend so can't swim with the Brighton swim club.  Today's strong swim made me feel confident that if i do stick to just two more quality swims before the race i'll be in good shape for the 1.2 mile swim.

Nice Hill Workout

Since i'm done with clients early on Friday's I like to enjoy my late mornings with training.  These next few day's just are not exciting me though.  Rain and storms are coming through and i planned three pool sessions and one open water swim for the week.  I figured one of them would get cancelled due to weather, but this week it looks like i may actually only get in one good swim.  It's about 65 degrees out and raining and i just cant force myself to go to the outdoor pool which is my only option due to time.  Tomorrow AM we are expecting thunderstorms so my open water swim is out.  Going to set my head straight and at least get in a great run today. Two weeks ago i did a hill session on the steep side of the Brooklyn Bridge and today i'll take the easier side.  The temperature is fantastic and it's drizzeling out.  After a 15 farily flat warm up I left my bottle at the bottom of the hill so could run with proper balance and avoid any undue stress on my shoulders.  I did 8-60 second sprints up, jogged down and rested a few more seconds for a 2 minute rest total.  The first 4 felt easy, strangely easy, so i picked up the pace for the last 8.  I was able to reach an appropriate interval HR between 172 and 179bpm.    Best pace was 7:50mm and none were below 8.2mm.

I did not eat before the run so had an Isalean shake with a few chunks of frozen banana immediately following.  I'm still contemplating the pool but just can't do it.  Instead i head to the gym in the basement and work on the TRX sustem.  Focusing on rear delts and external rotators.  Had put a new program together for a client and went over some of the movements that were new to me.  Did this for 40 minutes then spent a good 15 on TRX abs exercises that were new to me as well.  Watched a TRX abs video last night and wanted to try some that i was unfamiliar with.  Really effective, short session.  Lots of helpful exercises for swimming in particular.

Today was supposed to be a moderate day and it felt way too easy.  Tomorrow will be easy,  i'll probably get up at 5am and drive to Riverbank for the 6:30-8:30am open lap swim.  Have no idea how crowded it will be but hoping the lanes will be set at 50 meters.  If for some reason i can't rally to get up i will use the bike trainer indoors for a light ride.  Sunday will be hard because i'll ride the 1/2 iron bike course and looks like weather may be ok for that.

Great One Hour Indoor Trainer Set

It's friday and i'm planning this as a moderate training day.  Yesterday was easy and Saturday i would like to do an open water swim but looks like a big storm is coming.  My calendar only allows for an hour ride and it's pointless riding outside for such a short time so i set up the indoor trainer.  Have not done a good indoor workoug in a couple of weeks. This is a great muscular endurance set.  I warmed up only briefly and then got into my sets.  I did 5 sets for 8 minutes working into Zone4 and 5a.  My cadence was between 60-70 trhroughout so it was like climbing long low grade hills.  I stayed at the low end of the HR range.  Set numbers were 141, 153, 155, 154, 155bpm.  Spun lightly for about 5 minutes as a cool down.

This was challenging but not too tough.  Want to keep my legs recovered for the 4 hour bike and 1 hour run planned for Sunday.  May actually move it to Saturday due to the weather forecast.

Light Day, Easy Swim

Today is the start of my race week.  The NYC tri is on Sunday and I just checked my start time, 6:38am.  Brutal.  I'm only training 6.5 hours this week and everything is easy.  Time to watch food intake.  Since the weekend was pretty hard and today is a sunny day will head out to the read hook pool. Want to swim for just an hour.  Start with a quick warm up then set my tempo trainer to a slow 1:20sec stroke rate and swam 2 laps counting strokes and keeping track of time for the 160 meters.  Increase rate to 1:10 and then 1sec.  Best time was  1 sec at  3:36 but felt like i would get sloppy with my form if I continued for a long swim.  Took a short rest and set tempo trainer to 1:10 for my 1500meter swim.  Felt relaxed and think my head position was better than in past although i still need that massage.  Finished in 35:36 with av of 36-38 stokes consistantly per length.  Happy with that.  Next and last swim before the race will try a 1 sec stroke rate.  Finished after 55 min and did a quick cool down.

At home did 10 min of abdominal work.  Plan to keep weight training this week light (no legs) and all short sessions on Tuesday through Friday between clients.

What excellent bars can do for a bike

My training ride today was supposed to be an easy ride up Coney Island Ave to Roy's Sheepshead Cycle to replace my bike's current bars with new carbon Easton Attack TT bars.  I found that the tube I replaced on Saturday had a damaged valve as I suspected and I needed to replace the tube.  Except the only tube I had left was the wrong size.  Oops.  So the bike went onto the car and off I went.  After an hour and a half at the shop I had my new bars and decided to replace the back tire as it was quite worn and had a few significant holes from glass.  What the hell, i'm over budget anyway. Oh, by the way, these bars are normally $600 and i got them for $300.  So call my shop or order on line, they seem to have more stock Now for the test.  I've never ridden in true tri bars so I was feeling a bit out of sorts riding through traffic to prospect park.  Noticed that my shoulder placement was much more narrow and therefore a less solid base of support.  Once in the park I had planned a workout that I did the previous week.  Basically, a tempo ride for muscular endurance combined with  long hills for force.  After one loop of prospect park I was getting a better feeling for the new bars, shifting, weight balance, and relaxing my hands.  Really like my shoulder position, head position and generally more relaxed upper body placement.  I completed 6 laps of the park working around 70 rpm on flats and 60 on hills.  Felt really good!

When I compared results from previous workout I had increased my best lap time by 20 seconds over 3 miles, not bad considering it's like riding on a new bike.   Looking forward to riding this weekend on Long Island.  Feel i'll be adapted to it for my race in 11 days.

Didn't do any weights today.  Will have a chunk of time between clients tomorrow, so will save it for then.

New drills with new tools and an easy swim

Between clients this morning i put in 45 minutes of weight training.  7 shoulder exercises and one chest.  Rep range was varied depending on the movement, but worked from 6 reps to 12. Around noon I jogged to the pool, about 20 minutes.  My purpose today is to get to know and use a couple new training tools.  One is the forearm fulcrum, designed to assist my stroke with elbow placement and the other is the tempo trainer to help maintain a steady stroke.

I did some easy swimming and drills for about 15 minutes and then tried the forearm fulcrum.  Found that my hand was not as relaxed as i would like and that my stoke per length was shortening.  Decided to put that toy asie and check out some videos before using it agein.  The tempo trainer i really liked.  The tempo trainer is like a metronome.  You attach it to your gogggle strap or slid it under your  cap and it provides  an audible tone which you can set for a specific time.  Whenever it beeps, your hand should enter the water.  I started with a setting of 1.25 seconds per stroke and worked the pool a couple laps and then increased the rate slowly to 1 second.  I like that it evens out my stroke, but found that 1 second was a bit rushed for the workout i wanted to continue with.

I left the tempo tainer set at 1.15 seconds, focusing on long strokes and swam 1500 meters.  Each length was about 48-52 strokes and final time was 37:51.  My HR ave was 134.  This speed is pretty typical for my long swims.  Next week i want to do some fast repeats using the tempo trainer and then follow with a long swim at a faster stoke and see how that goes.  The stroke today felt slow and very controlled but i was hoping for a better stroke per length.

The pool deck was chilly as some clouds had arrived.  I wiped off with my cool mini towl that's like a shammy and threw my stuff back into my bag for an easy, refreshing run home.