After a 3 hour ride on the trainer, I hopped off to do my brick run. The plan was to go 1 hour or 8 miles, with 5 miles at "dream" half-ironman pace. The first two miles were 6:45 and 6:42, whew! Starting number 3, I felt a bit low nutritionally but I just didn't want to stop to take my gel and water, so I soldiered on - until I felt my right hammie twitch. Still, I didn't want to stop. All of a sudden, I got this overwhelming feeling of being the biggest hypocrite. How many countless times have I preached about the importance of nutrition. As a coach, I've stressed many times that nutrition trumps holding pace. If you don't take care of the nutrition, you won't be able to hold the pace. And here I am, not following my own advice. This isn't the first time I've acted in a hypocritical manner, in fact, looking back, I've often abandoned my own advice and forsaken my race or that important workout. But as I stated several months ago, this year feels different. And maybe this is one of those differences...I'm evolving, I'm listening to my own advice. Whatever the case, I actually stopped to take some water. And that mile, a 6:47, only two seconds slower. What I lost in two seconds, I gained in having the energy to run the next mile in 6:38. During my last mile, I felt great and thought about adding another mile.
Like many athletes, I equate a good workout with being absolutely smashed. In my head, if you're not thrashed, you didn't work hard enough. But as a coach, I've always defined a good workout as when you've executed near perfectly what you're supposed to do, and you hit all of your numbers and goals, how you feel after is irrelevant. If you feel great, great, if not, so what, did you execute and did you hit your numbers? And in this different year, during that fifth and final mile, I decided that it would indeed be my final "dream" pace mile. I jogged it on home knowing that I had a good workout because I executed the plan, hit my numbers, and the icing was that I felt great afterwards. Cheers to a different year.
On another note, I found this video on Simon Whitfield's blog. Courtney Atkinson put a camera on his bike and now we all get to experience what it's like to race in an ITU World Cup...absolutely brilliant!
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