Monday, September 10, 2012

Increasing mileage again

I spent a couple of weeks focused mostly on running. With the calf issues magically gone I could resume bike and swim training. Late last week I kicked it into the next gear. I had two good long swims on Thursday and Friday. It is so much nicer to be able to relax and still manage to cover some distance in the water. I am still not fast.

We have made tons of progress on the house in the last two weeks. We took some time off between June and August because the work we did in March, April and May sort of burned us out. Plus, we were on the road a tone during this summer.

Saturday was planned as my long ride. I wanted to get between 80 and 100 miles and needed to get some climbing. I left the house at 5:12am according to Senor Garmin. At mile 14 it was just after sun up and a bee found his way into my helmet. Rolling at about 21 mph, I could not stop and pull the helmet off fast enough. He stung me on the right side of my freshly-shaven dome. That slowed me down for a few moments as my head swelled up a little. I decided to ignore it and refocused on the task. I climbed over the ridge into Fountain Hills and down onto the IMAZ bike course. I rode down the Beeline to Gilbert Road - which is really the only part of the course that climbs. At the turn around I grabbed a gel and headed back up the route. The IMAZ bike course stops at Shea Blvd. I kept climbing. I rode out to Bush highway. Parts of this section of the Beeline climbs quite a bit. At mile 62 - I turned around and headed home. I had one more climb which was back over the ridge at Fountain Hills. I had sat back and conserved the whole day trying to simulate Ironman pace. Funny enough - this was probably my fastest and most comfortable 90 mile ride ever. Even with the climbing, stoplights, the bee incident, handing out a tube and a CO2 and stopping for water I averaged over 19 miles per hour. My average heart rate was down around 134 which is L1/Z1 for me. I believe this was my longest ride since IM St. George. This is good! I have built fitness without those long silly 6 hour ride days.

We spent Saturday evening at Tom and Tui Conner's house for Tom's 60th birthday. "Tom Conner" is a guy that I believe is an international double agent. He's such an interesting man - he probably doesn't even drink Dos Equis. Truth be told - Tui runs the show. She gives Tom his mission requirements.

Sunday morning I woke at 4:00am with the intention of getting the run out of the way. The problem was that I was not feeling very "worky outy". I went back to bed. I opted for the evening run. Mile 1 was rough. My quads were tired and I had very little torque. By mile 3 I was rolling again. It is funny how the body adapts once it understands your intentions. Then I got a break ... the clouds moved in and the last 6 miles of the run were much cooler and cloudy. I squeezed out 14 miles with about 1300 feet of hill climbing. I enjoy trail running. The paces are slower - but the terrain keeps me busy.

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