Friday, June 09, 2006

Learning how to dial it down

I think things are getting back on track. I've been pretty productive at work, despite the fact that I'm in the middle of starting up a bunch of projects and sitting back and waiting for them to come to fruition. I'm watching mice breed and other mice get fat. Yup. It's kind of like watching paint dry. I'm reading papers, going to seminars, and I even signed up for a much-needed Biostats course for the summer. I'm trying to be professional. Even though I still feel like a kid.

Training is going pretty well. Except I feel like I should be farther along by now. I guess my expectations are a little unrealistic. The San Diego International Tri is 2 weeks away, and I'm terrified. It's a short International--only 1000m swim, 23 mi bike, and 6 mi run. I know I can do all the distances separately, but I freak out about wondering if my body can do them all together. I'm just going to take it slow and focus on having a good time and finishing.

I went on a bike ride last night. I didn't feel very into it. Biking is hard for me because I have difficulty relaxing. Cars everywhere, bumps in the road, and I never quite know where I'm going. I think I need more group rides when I don't have to worry as much about all that stuff. Especially about getting lost or thinking about where to go. All you have to do is show up. I started out yesterday around 6:30 and decided to go exploring. It was kind of fun. I headed south by the coast, instead of north and ended up going around La Jolla Shores, the Cove, and Wind and Sea. I followed the bike route signs to Pacific Beach. Then to Mission Beach. I decided to loop around Mission Bay and take the Rose Canyon Bike Path home so as to avoid the gruesome, all uphill battle on the way back.

I had the hardest time finding it because I normally ride the Bay on the east side. I was all turned around. I finally figured it out and got home. By that time, my "easy" ride had turned into a very stressful 26 mile, 2 hour ride, where I ended up riding the last leg in the dark (w/o lights). I was exhasuted when I got home. That stressed me out even more b/c I need to be able to go that distance and still have enough left for a 6 mile run afterwards in only 2 weeks! Why was I so exhausted? I hope it was because I hadn't planned on going that far and was stressed out the whole time. I really could have used a granola bar towards the end too b/c I was starving! So much to think about (worry about).

After taking care of the buns, showering, and having a much-needed enchilada, topped off with some chocolate, cookies, and milk, I was ready for bed. Then, I couldn't sleep. What the f*#k? Funny thing is, this has happened to me before. Often, in fact. I feel completely wiped after a long ride, run, or race, and all I want to do is nap. I get all ready and lay down, and my mind starts racing while my body aches. Then, I feel wired. It's this weird, automatic, chemical thing. Does physical exhaustion ever cause your mind to race? Has this happened to any of you? This seems very counter-intuitive to me.

I wish I was in better shape. I just feel like every workout exhasuts me. I haven't figured out how to have an easy workout yet. I know you're supposed to mix hard and easy but I just tend to go all out, all the time. It feels so good. I love the speed, the intensity, pouring every inch of you out there until there is nothing left. It's the ultimate escape from the stress of daily life. But I know this is not good for training.

Maybe I should start wearing a heart-rate monitor and be more disciplined. Argh. I hate those things. Plus, mine interferes with my wireless bike computer. I've been contemplating purchasing a GPS for running, and then I can set my pace very accurately.

Another thing I have been missing is the group workouts offered by the club. It's such a great opportunity to meet people. Of course, I end up pushing myself even more b/c the workouts are tough (for me). I guess I need to pick which workouts are going to be hard (and with the group) and which will be easier (and solo). I want to be able to train 10 hours a week without being exhausted all the time. I want to do 2 workouts a day. My goal is to bike 4x/week (trainer--tempo sets/drills; long ride; hill ride; tempo ride), run 3x/week (long, track, tempo), swim 3x/week (masters, sets in pool, open water), and do weights 2x/week. Oh, and I want to take 1 day off a week. Hmmm. I think I need more time.


Cliff said...

I just read your comment on JP about sleeping in the library....good stuff i wish i can do that but there ain't no library in my company nuts. :)

I am doing a long course tri next Sunday and to prepare for that (mentally), I am going to do a trial tri this Sunday. Before Church, swim 1 km, bike 30 km and run 8 km. Should be about 2 hr. This is good to get me focus and give me the confident before actual race. Maybe u can do something liek that....dont' have to use the exact distance.

Don't worry about the bike ride. I get freak out when I am not training in 'comfort' enviornmnet. Yes there are times when I can't sleep. Especialyl during periods when I dont' train as much. *quite ironic*

Anonymous said...

I do all my weekly training at night. I don't even get out of the pool until around 8:30 or 9pm and I've done some long runs until 11pm. By the time I eat, tivo, etc., it could be almost midnight and I'm still kind of energized. Need sleep so I can't get up at 5am to do a workout before work. No showers at work so lunchtime workouts are out as well. After work, it's swim, bike, or run and the cycle continues until the weekend :-(

jessie_tri_mn said...

Looks like you have 12 sessions to put into 6 days of training. Perfect!

I have the luxury of getting workouts in at lunch. So back when I was doing doubles, I did plenty of morning/lunch sessions.

I have no idea how people train at night! After dark I turn into a sloth.

And yes, physical exhaustion causes me all sorts of insomnia. Beware of overtraining, this might be an early warning sign (sually is for me)

Jenö said...

Gotta watch that overtraining thing. I know I am over-tired when I can't focus and my mind goes a mile a minute. I wouldn't let the bike ride get to you, though... it's the sucky ones that help the really good ones feel "really good".

Tammy said...

Here's to hoping you always feel like a kid!

I'm reading a lot of research lately for a BioMechanics final paper. We got to chose the topic (yeah!), so I'm reading about the cycle/run transition in triathlons. This is work?? hehe.

JeffM said...

I get tired, but wired after an intense workout, especially since I take power bar gel with caffine.

Ken Schulz said...

Good luck in San Diego! Just remember all you need to do is have fun!!!

As for the too wired to sleep feeling I used to get that after an evening race. My body just felt hot like it was still going at full speed. Caffine may also have an impact.

Thanks for the link to my blog! Keep up the great training!

Habeela said...

I was in the same boat last week. If you can do all the things separately and you've done any kind of brick workout ever, you'll be just fine. Just expect the first couple of miles out of transition to be a little hard. Don't try to push it, just try to warm up and get into a rhythm. Once you get your rhythm you can take off.

Jack said...

I'm usually physically tired at night after a workout, but wired and have trouble gettting to sleep. My solution has been to start work early (6:45 a.m.) so I get home earlier and can do my workouts around 4:30 p.m. - then I have a few hours to unwind before I try to sleep. I also have cut out caffine and sweets after noontime.