Monday, September 21, 2015

All Aboard...

Technically I've been 'tapering' for a week now but it wasn't until after Sunday's run that I could honestly let myself taper.  This training cycle has been different than the others.  It's been hard, it's traveled with me to multiple states and countries, it's involved friends, sickness, wedding celebrations, and just a short race at 70.3 Worlds just 4 weeks out from race day.

I was able to get in some great training in early and mid-August.  Many of the long rides I was fortunate enough to do with the company of friends.  My mid-week bike workouts I was able to enjoy the company and being pushed by my good friend e.bougie (thank God she's back on the bike).  At times it felt easy, the training didn't feel like work, I couldn't name anything I'd rather do more.  A
Casual spin around the bay in Traverse City, MI
trip to northern Michigan for my brother's wedding was filled with open water swimming (out our back door), long rides along beautiful shoreline and perfect temperatures for long runs.  The wedding came and went, the training all got done, I didn't miss a beat (of the wedding or the training).

Just 11 days after returning to DC, Adam and I were jet-setting to Munich (via Moscow) for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships.  I was diligent about washing my hands, eating 'normal' foods, taking vitamins and getting my training in.  The German and Austria country-sides were breath- takingly beautiful.  We wanted to swim, bike, and run all over the place.  After almost 24 hours of travel time we made it to Munich.  The next morning we ran to a 50 meter outdoor pool and got back into the swing of things.  After our short stay in Munich it was on a train and down to Zell Am See.
Zell Am See-Kaprun, Austria
 We did some easy rides, got lost in the Alps, and some great open water swimming in the Lake Zell.  On Sunday we raced, hard, through the Alps.  It was 91 degrees when I got on the bike and 96 degrees when I got off and started running.  The conditions were rough, to say the least.

We took the day after the race off to explore the glacier nearby town and to then catch an afternoon train to Vienna.  We did an easy ride along the Danube and stopped for just a quick feel of the water.  I had felt something coming on all day Monday and now Tuesday had me struggling just to soft pedal for an hour.  Long story short I came down with some sort of sinus infection accompanied by a horrible cough and fever.  A German pharmacist helped me out as best she could.  Walking to the cafe just to get hot tea or soup felt harder than any workout I'd done over the summer.  I stopped worrying about workouts and did everything I could to get healthy. In the back of my mind wondering if I'd really be ready for an Ironman in just a few weeks.

Getting healthy took a good week and some meds once we were back in the states.  A few easy workouts with that nasty cold sweat feeling and there were soon glimpses of where I was pre-travel
and pre-illness.  I worked long hours and fit in my training that week so we could drive to the finger lakes region of New York for a wonderful wedding.  Another weekend of big training and another wedding.  Short recap..1.5 swim miles, 112 bike miles, 30 run miles.  To top it off the last run on Sunday evening was the best of all.  I'm back.

How does this story end...we'll see one week from today in Chattanooga.  I can say I'm confident I can execute my race plan on Sunday and I'm looking forward to an awesome day accompanied by great family and friends, both racing and supporting.  Here's to having a Fearless Mind, See you in Choo!

Bib #579 (Same as IMLP '14)


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