Thursday, January 10, 2008

Vacation and Austin Marathon

Yes, lack of consistent blogs for awhile on my part. I guess this comes with the holidays and the ‘off season’. I am not sure if triathletes get much of a real ‘off-season’, simply because (I know personally) I enjoy swimming, cycling and running, and well we always have some type of variety in there! Nevertheless, I think it is SO important to force ourselves to have some down-time and simply a change of pace/routine for a good month or two out of the year.

Thus, after finishing with Clearwater 70.3 World Championships, I took some down time. I then made the decision to train for the Austin Marathon (see? we cannot stay away!). I did at least not ‘officially start’ the training until early December, and with the race being February 17th, this is more of a ‘crash training’ effort for the marathon. So I wrote up a decent training plan and have done my best to stick to it. I did a 2-hour run when I was up in Indiana visiting my parents over Christmas, and I then had (after a 3-week build) a recovery week. During this week, before New Years, I decided to kick a 10 lb. dumbell quite hard, either jamming badly or breaking my middle right toe. Stupid, I know, but it happened. I limped around for a weekend which fortunately coincided with our drive to Santa Fe, NM for New Years. Luckily, I was able to ski for 2 days (one day at Taos, one day at Santa Fe) and the toe didn’t hurt too much…plus, would have been pretty painful to run so it all worked out beautifully! We returned from New Mexico on January 2nd, and by Friday amazingly enough, I could run again. How nicely it all worked out! Almost like I ‘intentionally’ hurt my toe so I could enjoy skiing w/o the guilt of not running.

In any case, as I ramble away…the marathon training is going well, as I did my longest run ever this past Sunday of 16.5 miles. Whew~! I even took a gel at the 1:10 mark, and it seriously felt like I was on drugs for about 30 minutes. Those gels raelly work! I am keeping my cycling and swimming to a bare minimum, and even picked up Bikram Yoga (Davenport) here in Austin for a 30-day membership. Great! It is incredibly challenging, but with only running being my ‘key’ workouts right now, I think it is a great compliment to the run training, pounding and aches and pains which seem to crop up.

I’ll try to keep the updates coming a bit more regularly. Getting back to the beginning of this post, while at times I feel ‘guilty’ for the lack of cycling and triathlon preparation, well…’tis a long season, and I am staying fit! Sometimes, it is good to challenge ourselves in a different way. For me, it is a run focus/challenge. And no matter what happens, I will learn about myself, my capabilities, limitations and well…experience some new horizons in the process. Try something a bit different during the off-season! It will refresh and invigorate yourself, your training and I believe lengthen your season. :) Thank you for listening to my rambling!