Wednesday, December 23, 2009

"I'm Not Sure Whether to Be Frightened by Your Schedule or Impressed by Your Dedication"

That quote came courtesy of Jon, upon realizing I woke up Monday morning at 6am to make it to a 6:30am spin class after going to bed at 1am. Well, Jon, this triathlon's not going to swim, bike, and run itself, and as I've mentioned in previous postings, I tend to revel in the early-morning Rocky-style workouts which, in the last week, have involved trips to Chelsea Piers for which I ran two miles across town before dawn, as well as the aforementioned 6:30 spin class, followed by another 20 minutes on the bike.

The Team In Training runs for the last two weekends have been somewhat intense - not because of the workout, mind you (our coaches have a better sense than I do of how hard we should be pushing at this time), but because of the frigid temps we've been training in. How cold was it? Well, the bike option was cancelled because they don't encourage cycling when it's under 30 degrees outside. Yeah.

The first of the last two Saturday workouts was a 30-minute out-and-back with an extra 10 minutes out-and-back for those crazy long-course Wildflower folks (i.e. me). As we turned to the traverse at 72nd street, the coaches decided to work some stairs into the mix with 5 sets for the group. Then, at each traffic light we passed (there are about 10), we were stopped and required to do a set of squats or lunges. A tough workout by any standards but me being, well, me, I also decided to run home for a total of 7 miles.

The second Saturday, the bike was again cancelled. Brrr. I warmed up on the way to the park with an easy 3-miler, and then joined the group for a 30-minute out-and-back, followed by a bike clinic at a nearby shop where we learned how to change a flat, were taught what to wear on the ride (in case you're wondering what to get me for Hannukah, I need a cycle jacket. Thanks!), and were schooled on the importance of leg warmers (think Lance Armstrong, not Jennifer Beals) for those in-between weather days.

In between, I've been doing my best to work on what I think is the scariest part of the tri: the swimming. With swim practices not starting until January, I have employed the very scientific method of learning by watching YouTube videos, trying to copy the technique of the really good swimmers in the pool with me, and harassing Marissa until she came to the pool with me to critique my style. I'm up to 60 laps with some drills suggested by our coaches. 74 laps = a mile, so I'm on my way!

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