When your training week comes with a warning from your coach, you should probably pay attention. When I looked at my week ahead on Training Peaks, I found this note of caution: “This looks like an easy week, but it’s not. It has fewer workouts, but the intensity is high so take your easy days, easy.” Two years ago I would have shrugged that off and gone hard no matter what. Now? I know better. Let’s see how it turned out…

 

WEEK OF JANUARY 16, 2017

 

RUNNING

There were definitely some super intense runs, including this incline with speed work I did on the treadmill:

Warm up: 10 minutes easy

Main Set:

6 x

2x[30 seconds at 2%, then 30 seconds rest]

2x[30 seconds at 4%, then 30 seconds rest]

2x[30 seconds at 0%, then 30 seconds rest]

I was able to maintain a 6:30 pace but just barely, by the fourth set. I was told to just jump off the tread during the 30 seconds of rest otherwise it would be ridiculous. Let me tell you, it was ridiculous anyway.

This was taken before I started. Obviously.

Other runs included:

Friday: long aerobic run | 8 miles | 8:15 pace

Sunday: threshold intervals | 2 x 15 minutes at 6:40 pace/4 min recovery in between | 7 miles

Total = 20

CYCLING

I had some great (high intensity!) rides on the trainer and, as I posted to Instagram, I absolutely did not want to do the one on MLK. I had just driven home after a weekend of snowboarding, my kids were stir crazy from being in the house for 15 minutes, I was tired, I had piles of laundry and, my husband was working in the basement so I had to lug my bike and trainer to the first floor. But I sucked it up and planted my ass on the bike and rode!

However, this was not even close to the hardest workout I did for the week. This was:

6 x 6 min hard Z3 (high heart rate!)/3 min Z2/5 min recovery

This lasted1 hour and 20 minutes and I was in the pain cave, dripping sweat for the majority of that time. My watch told me I needed 27 hours of recovery time, but I felt invincible! I also started listening to yet another mental training book* on Audible. *see reading below

Then Sunday, after my intense run, I did some isolated leg training moves which I used to think were worthless but actually improve pedaling efficiency and make the pain cave a tad less painful.

Total mileage on the bike = 42

SWIMMING

Mercy was shown in my pool workouts but I also saw how the intensity of the week reflected in my 25 meter times.

First I had a big day of strength training and 2500 meters in the pool. For whatever reason, I get super intimidated when I have to do 3 x 500s. 500 meters is 20 laps or 1 mile. I do this in addition to warm-ups and cool downs and I have only 1 minute of recovery in between. It’s a total mind-f**k but I was super consistent this week, doing each 500 within 3 seconds of each.

Needless to say, by the end of the week and after my long run, I had sets of 25 meters. You may recall I broke 19 seconds just two weeks ago. Last Friday? I had to struggle to get 21 seconds. #Intense

Total meters = 3400

FUEL

I randomly was given a PR Bar, which I had never heard of, and it was delicious! The best part is that it has 15 grams of protein and some great ingredients. Other good news? They are gluten free and don’t taste like cardboard. Bonus!

I like to switch up my bars a lot. Although VEGA peanut butter/chocolate remains a staple for me, I do get sick of them every once and a while. Options are good…

 

THINGS I LOVE

This article on Zelle/Runner’s World from Kelly Coffey (originally for Men’s Health) about the first minute of your day. It’s powerful and probably pretty useful if you have a teenager (or someone who just acts like one) in your house. I don’t like that they titled it as a “motivational trick” but, that’s just me:

This Motivational Trick Is Incredibly Powerful | Kelly Coffey

The author was talking to 17 year-old girls about the importance of taking care of your body in college. You can imagine how well that was received, and was reflected in the following question from what was no doubt a captivated audience member – –  “Since we’re all going to die, what’s the point of being well?”

Coffey’s answer made most of them cry. As they should.

THINGS I DON’T LOVE AS MUCH

Speaking of Zelle, they have announced via email that the weekly newsletter will now be called the RW Rundown. Hmmm. Wherever did they come up with that name? Next they will be telling you to train for life! Pffffff.

READING

I should probably title this “listening” since I’m doing so much of that lately. Since I’m meditating like a boss (and loving it) this book was an obvious choice as it marries mindfulness and intense training in the best way possible:

The Mindful Athlete by George Mumford

Since Michael Jordan credits the author with “transforming his on court leadership of the Bulls,” I felt it was worth a listen. I was right, natch.

THIS is how athletes are made!

And, although I have been MIA at the last few book clubs, I’m hopeful to make it to the next one to talk about Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah. It’s a tad cheeseball in some parts, but overall it’s a very interesting story about the lives of best friends from elementary school though…um, I’m not sure since I’m still reading.

RANDOM PICTURE OF THE WEEK

This is my son

in a bar

with a camo hat on backwards

holding a purple stuffed animal

ah 7…

How was your week?

What have you done lately that was intense?