Sunday, January 3, 2010

Random January 2010 updates

This is my current cycling setup...yes, in the bedroom. (It made sense at the time.) I never would have imagined what a good workout you could get on a stationary trainer, using just the gears to change resistance. I'm getting a bit spoiled by technology. I load the workout onto a Garmin, strap on a heart rate monitor, put my computer on the dresser, load a movie from Netflix, put on headphones, grab a towel, fill the water bottle...and OFF I go.

The cycle workouts I'm given really appeal to me. They are usually about hitting certain cadences or heart rate zones and aside from a stretch of 10-15 minutes to warmup, I'm usually not doing anyone one thing for more than five minutes. It becomes a game to see how close to a prescribed cadence I can stay, how high I can get my heart rate, or how quickly I can recover. Getting that instantaneous feedback from the Garmin Edge really motivates me.

So I'm logging miles, but going NOWHERE! The only evidence of the journey is a red face and nice puddle of sweat on the yoga mat below. The aero bars are new and I LOVE them, very comfy, and they sure beat trying to go aero using the brake hoods.

Looking at this picture, I'm wondering if the seat can come up some and the handlebars can come down some?

Today I found out that my bodyfat has dropped a couple of percent since the last time it was measured (late summer, I think) but my weight is pretty much at the top of my good range. Time to tighten up the discipline in the nutrition department. It'll help when school starts again and breakfast is automatic and all my meals up until dinner are packed so there's no deviating. My trainer is incredibly disciplined, probably more so than anyone I have ever known ever. When I need the accountability he's willing to step in and help, but I know what I need to do and just need to commit and do it.

The training program stayed pretty rigorous and fun through the holidays, so my cardio level has been good. I've been doing short-distance speed workouts on the track and my time on 220s is improving. The last speed workout was on the high school track because VT's was still covered in snow. It turned out to be pretty fun because a contingent of the BHS track team was out there which probably helped me push a little bit harder. I'm not seeing that speed translate yet into road runs. It may be the cold weather, I'm not sure, but I've been feeling kind of sloggy out there. I know spring will give my runs a much needed pick-me-up. For now, I still see every run as money in the bank and a key component to stress management. I just do my best and have faith that in the long run the effort is paying off.

One fun running change-up was that I did my longest run (15+ mi) since Richmond on New Year's Day at 5:30 am with friends Michaela and Shannon. We chatted the whole time, kept a conservative 9'ish pace, and ran down the middle of deserted roads around town. It was a lot of fun! Shannon is a 2:50 marathoner who is training for three 100-mile races this year. He is just a machine when he runs, I really don't know how he does what he does, but it's inspiring to watch. And Michaela is seasoned, solid, and confident. She teaches many of the group fitness classes and is in outrageous good shape.

I've been nursing a minor shoulder issue for a couple of weeks. When anything is wrong I find it very distracting. I've had this sort of thing before and shoulder stuff seems to be notorious for taking their time to clear.

I'm taking a few down days this week (does learning to snowboard count?) and heading to Pittsburgh, then more training fun for winter races. Then in 4-5 months the triathlons will start and I'll be ready. I'm also ready for these temperatures in the teens and low 20's to moderate.