The 1st week: Are my goals realistic?

I have come to the realization that even I, as the epitome of the positive mental attitude, still hear those negative voices in my head.  For all the conversations I have with clients, friends and other athletes about going out and just having fun, I still have grand notions of finishing races with a PR(personal record) and while working out this week those goals seem daunting.

I had three Lactic Threshold tests I had to complete this week; one each for swimming, biking and running.  While just doing these tests I felt like I was really out of shape, and truth be told, I did take an off season for the last couple of months, at least by triathlete standards.  I did complete at least 5 hour long workouts a week with a half-marathon and a 10k thrown in there, and, oh yeah Ragnar, but I wasn’t in “training” mode per say.  This week I started back “in training” and my goals seem so far off and this is only my third day.

Monday, I completed my Bike and Run LT tests which consisted both of a 10 minute warm up, followed by 40 minutes of the event at a pace that burned my legs and put me into a feeling of oxygen deprivation but not so much that I couldn’t complete the full 40 minute main set which was then followed by a 10 minute cool down.  My running LT is 173 and my biking LT is 165.  I looked into my future workouts they are noted with requirements that include the LT.  For instance:  Bike 12×1 minute climbs at LT+10, meaning I should be climbing and my heart rate should be 175.  Sounds like fun doesn’t it?  I know my body will acclimate, hopefully I won’t make a mess before it does.

Tuesday, I completed my first bike workout and strength workout.  The bike was 8-12×1 minute climbs in the saddle at a RPM of 50-60.  Now my normal riding RPM is 85-95, so you can imagine the resistance that had to be on the bike.  I ended up doing it on the spin bikes at LA Fitness, because, well, there are no hills in my general vicinity which is Tampa, Florida.  Nothing but flatland here.  I have to travel 45 miles north to San Antonio to get any resemblance of some hills, and during the week, that just is not happening.  Why?  I have a responsibility to this activity called “work”.  I wish I could sit here, blog and comment all day, but unfortunately I cannot.  I blog in between meetings, lunch and then edit when I can.  This workout while being fun, was what I would call, THE QUAD KILLER.  It was brutal.

Unfortunately, I was late getting to the gym so I was not able to get my strength workout in, so I showered, drove to work and then returned that evening.  Luckily, I always have an extra set of workout clothes in the car. (I think I got that from Ben Mena.  He is notorious for spontaneously telling his girlfriend to just drop him off 10-15 miles from home and after changing into a spare set of shorts and shoes he runs home.)

I haven’t worked out with weights in a while, and I know from my studies of the anatomical makeup of muscles and the neurological systems of the body that there is a “breaking in” period no matter how much experience you have lifting.  In order to activate the pleasure center of my brain instead of the pain center, I had to drop the weight down and do the exercises concentrating on good form.  It was a circuit of 5 supersets and it was not easy, no sir, not easy at all.  Deadlifts, pull-ups, squat to overhead thrusts, medicine ball wood choppers, side planks, cable twists and more.  I felt beat to death afterwards.  Of course, I understand my body enough that I had to stretch very well afterwards or my back would be yelling at me later.

I also learned why I really enjoy working out in the morning.  It was extremely busy at the new South Tampa LAF last night.  I barely got a parking space, and I ended up having to do most of the movements in a tiny little space, while other members were just waiting to pounce.  It was at that point I read myself the riot act and vowed that no matter how much I had to do during the week, I would just wake up early to finish all of my workouts in the mornings.

That vow started this morning as I was up at 4:30 and ready to leave at 5 even though my first workout was track at UT which didn’t start until 6.   That workout was brutal as well;  800-400×3-1mile-400×3, at least this week I didn’t falter until the last 400 and only by a couple of seconds.  As soon as I finished and cooled down I headed to LAF to do my swim T-test.  Basically this is 1000 meters swam as if I was in a race and then the average time of a 100 meters is considered my T-Pace for workouts.  Future workouts for example included “4×100 at T-pace – 10 seconds”.  I have been working really hard on my body position in the water, but I am still really slow. (Notice I am not mentioning what my T-Pace actually is.)  With a pull buoy or fins, I can go forever at 1:50 min per 100m, but without I am…well…a little slower.

After going through all of this, I guess I feel like I should.  There is a long journey ahead.  I might as well enjoy it.

Carpe Viam!!!

Brad Minus

is a certified running coach, triathlon coach, personal trainer and sports nutrition coach who's real passion is to help others enjoy the journey on the way to conquering their goals. He has written many articles and guest posts on the technical, nutritional and psychological aspects of endurance training. He currently lives and trains in Tampa, Florida.

  • I always say: Go big or go home! DOn’t set the bar too low!

    • IronGoof says:

      Thank you. I hear that in my head for every workout Kat, but the saying should be “Go Big and Smart, or go home.” Otherwise, people become prone to injuries. My new saying is “Just Do It Right!”

  • Beka says:

    Agree with Kat! Only place you can go is UP!

  • Run DMT says:

    Wow. I am impressed with your workouts. Way to go!

    I’ve heard that complaint before about gyms in the evening. Several of my friends prefer the morning because it is quieter and less crowded.

    • IronGoof says:

      The difference is remarkable. I did a strength workout this morning and it so much more peaceful than the other night. I also found out the gym actually opens at 5am instead of what I thought was 530a. Yay! More time in the pool if I need it.

  • Jessica says:

    Good job getting back out there! You will back to kick ass mode in no time.

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