Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Be Still My Beating Heart...

Valentine's Day approaches but hearts take on a different meaning now. Where once they signified purely love and happiness, they now bring images of toil and labour under the increasingly warm skies. Beat beat beat beat... it's all become about training this largest of muscles to perform well under pressure.
And it seems still to be going well, although I'm now having to take a week off running due to an extremely virulent blister on the heel of my left foot which is (I think) becoming infected. But it was the result of a great cross country run I did with Ironmen Colin, Alex and Simon, plus new running mates Don and Paul. We ran over Ivinghoe Beacon on Saturday, completing 14 miles and over 2,500 feet of ascent. I managed 1 hr 56 at an average heart rate of 85%. Pleased with this... it was a tough old run.

Anyway, here's the week that was:

Monday: 85 mins cross country run. New running shoes - I've moved to Brooks from Asics. I'll keep you posted on how they go! 45 mins weights/core/strength/stretch

Tuesday: 45 mins return to swimming. Slow and easy trying to counter a pain in my right shoulder. 60 mins recovery bike ride. Nice and easy on the roads in lovely weather. 55 mins running - did 10 mins ironman pace (sub 9') 35 mins marathon pace (approx 7'40) 10 mins ironman pace. felt very good and very strong. Avg 8'03 per mile, avg 136 bpm (79.5%)

Wednesday: 45 mins 2km pool swim. Nice and easy. Shoulder feeling better. 65 mins bike 18 miles at 16.5mph. Avg 118bpm. Mainly big ring. Bison Hill included. 70 mins long slow run with Tring Running Club. 8 miles at avg 126 bpm (73.68%). Avg pace 8'53 per mile. Getting used to running this slow.

Thursday: 45 mins 2km pool swim. Again, nice and easy. Getting technique back and getting shoulders used to swimming again after such a long time away. 60 mins bike turbo session. Did the increasing pyramid session with 2 minute bursts x 4 (75%, 80%, 85%, 90% of MHR). Did 5 sets. Fantastic session. Hardest bike session i've ever done. Really pushed myself. Very pleased.

Friday: Complete rest day.

Saturday: 2 hour cross country run. See above.

Sunday: 1 hour recovery bike. Another bloody puncture. Two in two weeks. Someone's giving me practice I think.

Total time training this week 12.58 hours.

Feels great to be back swimming, lovely to be out in the sunshine on the bike. A drag that my run resulted in such a bad blister (not from new shoes note... wore my flyroc trail shoes - probably not enough cushioning).

Congratulations to Mark Kleanthous on his great article this month in 220 Magazine. Top Tips indeed, Mark.

Finally, happy Valentines Day to my four Valentines ... in no particular order - my mum, Sadie, wife Fiona, daughters Erin and Alice.

Happy training everyone.

Keep those hearts beating.

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