July 3, 2008

Mile High

Everyone talks about the runner's high, this great feeling you supposedly get after a long, hard run. I've never quite experienced this given the enormous amount of pain I'm in after most challenging runs, but I experienced a different kind of training high today. I swam my first continuous mile with absolutely no breaks. It took me 38 minutes to cover the 72 pool lengths (1800 yards). That's 38 minutes face down in the water with a lot of time to think. I spent most of the time analyzing different parts of my stroke and running through all of the great tips from my virtual swim coach. I felt relaxed and the only hard part was keeping track of how far I had gone.

Covering this distance has certainly boosted my confidence, but I know I still have a lot of work to do. I've been trying to get a live coach to do a few sessions with me, but given the NYC Tri is two weeks away (gulp) and it's the heart of triathlon season, that has not been an easy task. Maybe next week?

It was another hot day in New York, still 86 degrees for my JackRabbit training run tonight. We ran a total of 5.14 miles consisting of three loops. We were supposed to do the first loop at a slower, warm-up pace, the second at a 5K race pace, and the third at a 10K race pace. I, of course, went out way too fast on the first loop. My fancy new Garmin showed that I was below an 8-minute mile at some points, which is not wise for a warm-up. But I was chatting with our coach Helene about my tri (I just LOVE talking about the tri) and since she was on a bike, I got caught up and wasn't paying attention to pacing. I was starting to get tired on the second loop, when we were supposed to be kicking it into high gear, and ended up with the same split as the first. On the third, I was really dragging, but luckily it was supposed to be a more moderate pace. I need to get more disciplined for intervals. I'm used to the Lazy Marathoner method of run training which generally involves slogging through weekly mileage at whatever pace I can sustain. This year will be different. I promise.

My pool is closed for the holiday weekend so I'm planning an open water swim. I definitely need the practice. I'm sure I'll get out there and end up panicking and struggling after 100 meters, but I just need to keep practicing. I'm determined to beat my fear of hopping into the Hudson River with 3,000 other swimmers. Hmmm.... Ok, I think it will take more than a couple trips to Brighton Beach, but here's hoping.

I'll be riding a lot this weekend as well. I'm in a Tour de France challenge through BeginnerTriathlete.com and I committed to riding 300 miles and at least 10 stages. Unfortunately, my ride tomorrow won't count, but starting Saturday, every ride and mile will go toward my goal. I love a good challenge.

Distance - 2150 yards (1.22 miles) with 1800 continuous
Time - 50:00

Distance - 5.14 miles
Time - 43:21

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