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