Week 10 – Final Push {Steven’s Ironman Experience}

With the “Big Day” just a little over 3 weeks away, my mind is starting to play tricks with me. I constantly catch myself wondering if I did enough or if there was something I could have done different. Although I know I did everything I was supposed to, I think you are never quite sure until you cross that finish line. I even had my first dream about the race this week. Unfortunately, everything that could have gone wrong did (not the best confidence booster). On the bright side, it made me think of a few things to add to my pre-race checklist.

Going through week 9, I felt like my workouts were slacking off a little bit. I think the main thing that is throwing me off is that my weekday workouts have backed down on time and intensity as I focus on the long workouts on the weekends that it feels like I’m not doing enough during the week. I can also tell that I am starting to get burnt out with the non-stop swimming, biking, and running. Seeing that I needed a little variety, I decided I was going to switch up a workout and go mountain biking. Even with the one fall I had (of course when someone pulled off the trail to let me pass), it was a much needed break from the monotony of road biking. I ended up getting in about 2 hours on the trail and then finished my long day with another 2 hours on my road bike. Sunday brought on an open water swim at the lake followed by a 10 mile run later that afternoon.

This week and next week are the longest weeks of my training plan, with 12 and 13.25 hours of workouts, respectively. After my typical rest day on Monday, I had a 1 hour swim Tuesday. The pool has been getting more and more crowded each week and I am having a harder time getting into a lane. After waiting around for 15-20 minutes, I only got in a little over a mile before my arms starting giving out. My arms were not too appreciative of my decision to go mountain biking. Once those went, my form went with it and I knew that was all I was going to get for the day. Wednesday was a planned 1 hour bike but we had tickets to the FC Dallas game so I had to move it to Friday (see why I am feeling like I am slacking off???). Thursday was a much better day as I finally swam the entire race distance, 2.4 miles, non-stop in just under an hour and 10 minutes. My goal for the race is around 1:15 so hopefully that means I am right where I need to be with my swimming. After dinner, I had an easy 3.5 mile run.

This will be my last full weekend of structured training as next weekend I will be riding in the MS 150. The plan is for a 4.5 hour ride and an hour and a half swim on Saturday followed by a two and a half hour run Sunday. At this point, the time/distance is not that hard. It is more about trying to fight of the boredom of the longer workouts. I just have to keep telling myself that I only have a couple more of these to go and in 3 weeks, it will all be worth it.

Steven Harben
Recreation Programmer
City of Wylie

Course Demo Week {Summer Fun Wylie Recreation}

A little bit Tai Chi.  A little bit Bollywood. A whole lot of, "more, please!"

Course Demo Week starts Monday, April 30, 2012. Click on image for flyer.

Try Tai Chi, Karate, You Can Paint, Ballroom Dance, Hip Hop, Crochet, Step Aerobics, Yoga or Bollywood.

The benefits of recreation are endless, but space is limited! Register at front desk 15 - 20 minutes prior to demo start time.

Recreation Programmer
City of Wylie

Get your Activity Menu! {Summer Fun Wylie Recreation}

Your guide to summer fun is here! 

Flip pages online, browse activities and register online, or pick up a hardcopy, today!

Early Bird Online Registration for most activities begins Monday, April 30, 2012 at 9 am.  Save 15% online through Sunday, May 6 (transaction fee applied to online registrations.)

Standard Registration online or in person begins Monday, May 7, 2012 at 9 am and runs until courses are full.

Recreation Pass Holders save 15% on registration fee for most activities. 

Also, don't miss out on FREE Course Demo week, Monday, April 30 - Friday, May 4, 2012.

Annika Sacco
Recreation Supervisor
City of Wylie


Senior Shenanigans May 2012 {Wylie Senior Activities}

The May edition of Senior Shenanigans and activity calendar for adults age 55+ is available on our City webpage.

Let us know if you have any questions!

Anthony Cook
Recreation Supervisor
City of Wylie

May Gym and Wall Schedules {Wylie Recreation Center}

May Open Gym and Open Climb schedules are available!

Check out Basketball, Volleyball and Toddler Time in the Gym.

We also have Open Climb and Homeschool Climb.

Annika Sacco
Recreation Supervisor
City of Wylie

Weeks 8-9 – 30 Day Countdown {Steven’s Ironman Experience}

I had a rough time getting my workouts in a couple weeks ago, but things really turned around last week. I was able to use the long 3 day Easter weekend to get in a 60 mile bike ride as well as a 16 mile run. Both of those distances are the furthest I have made it so far. I still need to add some mileage on to my bike but I don’t really plan on going too much farther with my run before the actual race. It seems a little weird to say it but at this point there is not really much of a difference in a 16 mile run vs. a 26 mile run.

This past weekend, I started my last recovery week before I go into a taper the last couple of weeks before the race. Saturday was another brick workout with an hour and a half ride followed by a 45 minute run. Every time I do one of these I feel more comfortable running after getting off the bike (hopefully that continues through the race). I actually have to force myself to slow down because my legs want to keep moving at the speed they were on the bike. When I checked what was on the plan for Sunday I was amazed at what I saw. Nothing planned for Sunday or Monday. TWO DAYS IN A ROW OFF!!! I have not had 2 days in a row with absolutely nothing on the schedule since I started this plan 2 months ago. While it was great to get some time to just sit at home and relax, it didn’t last long as I ended up playing volleyball on Monday to fill in with my old team after they lost a player. After being worried the whole time about getting hurt, I decided I was too close to race day and I just couldn’t risk any injuries so I told them I couldn’t finish out the last week of their season with them.

Tuesday, I had a breakthrough in the pool. I finished 2 miles of swimming without any breaks. It may have been slightly longer but somewhere around the 1900 meter mark I was so bored from swimming laps that I lost count. Based on my average speed up to that point I should have at least completed 3200 meters (if I slowed down a bit) and potentially even more. Other than my race a few weeks ago, I had not managed to swim more than about 1000m before I needed to take a break. The last few weeks I had really been struggling with my swimming which had me a little frustrated as the first 5 weeks I felt better every time I got in the pool. I came to two conclusions about what was going wrong. First, I had lost body fat (which is buoyant) and therefore I had to spend more energy staying afloat. Second, since I have lost about 15 pounds since I began my training; my swimsuit has gotten a little baggy and is catching more water and creating drag. I never thought that losing weight would cause my training to become harder.

The rest of the week is pretty easy. 15 minute run on Wednesday followed by a 30 minute bike and 30 minute run on Thursday. Friday I get ANOTHER day off before I head into the weekend with a 4 hour bike ride and an hour of swimming Saturday and then a 2+ hour run on Sunday. I’m not adding a whole lot physically from what I have been doing, but pushing just a little on the weekends while using the rest of the week to recover.

Steven Harben
Recreation Programmer
City of Wylie


Week 7 - Back to the Grind {Steven’s Ironman Experience}

Back to the grind (physically AND mentally)! After really slacking off last week as I recovered after my race, the plan for this week was to get back on track with my training. The weekend started off with a long ride (planned for 3 ½ hours) and an hour of swimming on Saturday followed by a 2 ½ run on Sunday. My times/distances during the week have been kept to about an hour and a half at the most just to keep my fitness up while I build my endurance with the long workouts on the weekends.

My Saturday ride started off great until about mile 25 when I got a flat tire. I’m not really sure what I hit as it was just a slow leak and I didn’t find anything stuck in my tire. After a quick tube change, I was back up and going. At about mile 30 though, the heat started getting to me and I could feel my energy levels continue to fall. I just didn’t eat enough that morning to sustain me for the length of that ride. About mile 35, I ended up having to stop at a store for a Gatorade and some candy just to get some sugar back in my system. That helped a little but I ended up cutting my workout about an hour short. I just wasn’t quite ready to push that hard only 6 days post-race. After the ride and mowing the yard to “recover”, I had nothing left in me to go swim so I decided to put that off to Sunday.

Going off my workout from the previous day, I decided to go a little easier on the run. I planned to add several walking segments in to make sure I didn’t hit the wall again. For my 2 ½ run, the plan was to run for 25 minutes and then walk for 5. I started out around 11am as I am trying to build up my heat tolerance as well. I felt great for the first 6-7 miles but then my legs really started feeling heavy. I kept trying to push through the fatigue to make it to the next walking segment. Finally, I started feeling a little bit of pain in my previously injured ankle. After spending 4 months in physical therapy trying to get my ankle completely healed, I decided that this was not something I wanted to risk running through. I ended up just walking the last hour and finished the day around 13 miles even with the walk breaks mixed in.

At this point, I was a little disappointed that 2 workouts in a row had not gone as planned. I was hoping I could turn it around with an easy swim but no such luck. The pool was packed and there were about 15 people crammed into the 4 swim lanes available for lap swimming. I ended up having to wait around for a space to open up before I could finally get in. By this time, the pool was getting ready to close so I ended up only getting about 30 minutes in. I ended up 0 for 3 for the weekend on hitting my workout goals.

With a planned rest day on Monday, it gave me a chance to really recover from the rough weekend and just sit back and relax. I told myself I would get back on track on Tuesday. Well, Tuesday’s weather ruined my run so Wednesday’s ride turned into a brick workout with a 25 mile bike ride immediately followed by a 5K run. I must have really needed that extra day off because that was the best I ever felt while running after getting off the bike.

Even though my workouts didn’t go exactly as planned, I did what I could. The worst thing at this point would be to try to push myself too hard and end up getting sick/injured. I will gladly take a missed workout on 1 day over being forced to miss a week or more because I tried to do too much. The next few weeks are going to be just as challenging mentally as they are physically because I have no major events to look forward until my race, which is now only 43 days out. Still far enough that I am not nervous about it yet but also close enough that I know I have a lot of work to get done before it gets here.

Steven Harben
Recreation Programmer
City of Wylie


Summer Track Early Bird Online Registration TODAY! {Wylie Recreation}

Wylie Flyers Summer Track Early Bird Online Registration starts today! Register online and save 15%, this week only.

Early Bird Online Registration - 15% off!
Monday, April 2, 2012, 9 a.m. through Sunday, April 8, 2012

Regular Tuition Registration
Monday, April 9, 2012, 9 am until filled
at Wylie Recreation Center and Bart Peddicord Community Center

Shaffer Stadium, 516 Hilltop Lane

Age 7 – 10 (turning age 7 - 10 prior to December 31, 2012)
Tuesday and Thursday
6:00 - 8:00 pm
Starting Monday, May 1, 2012

Ages 11 – 14 (turning age 11 - 14 prior to December 31, 2012)
Monday and Wednesday
6:00 - 8:00 pm
Starting Tuesday, April 30, 2012

Registration fee: $125 per person

Provided by the City of Wylie Parks and Recreation Department in conjunction with the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation (TAAF) Region 7 Summer Circuit Track Season. Registration includes a Wylie Flyers Track Club T-shirt, uniform and local and regional TAAF fees.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Steven Harben
Recreation Programmer
City of Wylie