Monday, June 1, 2009

Don't Do Other People's Training

As with most advice, it's much easier to give than to follow. I was invited to do a long ride on Saturday with a former student of mine who I used to coach. He is training for the Death Ride and his buddy is training for Ironman France so they wanted to do a 100+ mile ride. The plan was to do Marshall Wall, a 109 mile ride with over 7000' of climbing. I said yes which makes total sense because I'm only racing olympic distance races this year? I sent Russ an email the day before which read, "There's just something not right when you're sitting here today knowing that this time tomorrow, you'll be bonked and hurtin' and thinking, why the f@#$ am I doing this?" My longest ride this year was 74 miles done once over two months ago. And there was no build-up to this distance either as I've been racing the past month and keeping my bike mileage low (can you tell I'm setting up the scenario here). To add insult to injury, we took a wrong turn and added another 15 miles to our ride. My first bonk surprisingly didn't come until the 75 mile mark but fortunately, within five miles was salvation in the form of the Bovine Bakery in Pt. Reyes. During our food break, I pulled out my ipod which was my way of telling the two of them adios and sayonara, I ain't hanging with you cats no more. As I said goodbye to one train, I saw another train come up, my teammate Greg. He asked me to ride with him saying that he already did his hard effort for the day and was cruzin' home. After 5 miles, Greg dropped me just cruzin'. At 95 miles, I hit the Bolinas-Fairfax climb, 7K from bottom to top with 1600' vertical feet in between. Here are pictures of some good reading along the climb. I was bonked, it was cold and the fog was so thick that water was condensing into rain droplets (setting the scenario again). Normally, I would be focusing on the suffering and asking myself why the F@#$ do I do this? But not this time. In fact, for the upteenth time this season, Charisa popped in my head and reminded me to find the enjoyment in the situation...and I did. I just cruised along happy that I was listening to a good mix on my ipod, not having to chase anybody, and doing one of the most beautiful climbs in Marin. You have to understand, this is a huge turnaround for me as when I'm in this situation, I usually can't see pass the suffering. About 20 miles later and a stop-off at a KFC/Taco Bell (biscuit and bean burrito), I was back at my car, mentally alert and ready for a run. 26 minutes later and 3.5 miles added to the bank, I was off to the pool for a 2000 yard shower. Day done. So what do I do the next day, once again do other people's training. I swam 5000 yards with the crew training for Ironman CDA. Having still not learned my lesson, I went for a 10 mile HILLY run with a guy who will be going to Kona this year. And he convinced me to sit on my trainer for 45 minutes after the run. I gotta learn to take my own advice.


D said...

You're dumb.

Charisa said...

Awesome! Sometimes riding by myself can be so much fun and if it hurts you can just slow down! :)

I want to come ride up there sometime - I bet it is just beautiful!

IAN said...

Dude, this is something I constantly struggle with. Especially since I am the only one of my regular training crew to be doing an IM (actually 3) this year. They always want to do the shorter, faster stuff.

Still, sounds like a great training weekend for you. A little distance never hurt anyone right? There I go rationalizing again.