About a year ago I kicked off my training after 2 years completely off. I don't mean off as in triathlete off -- I mean off as in very normal, don't work out for a month at a time, then maybe hit the gym 2 days in a row, then repeat. That kind of off. To give you an idea in terms of endurance performance, at that time, my body tested out to be only 68% as efficient compared to what I was used to operating at for the first 29 years of my life. That's based on my V02 max numbers which, for those of you who are interested were at 48mL/kg/min vs 70+. When I went to run on the treadmill, I swore it felt like Tempe, AZ and San Diego, CA were all of a sudden at 6000 feet altitude. I was outta shape in every way. This year was about climbing back up the mountain and putting all the pieces, big and small, into place so that come Jan 1, 2009 I'd be ready to roll, for real this time. And it was all that and then some...and yet...
...recently I've been feeling behind the 8 ball.
I took a break after the marathon and next thing i knew, it's been almost 2 months. Anyone else have that experience? Yes I've been enjoying epic adventures here and there, as planned, without much rhyme or reason, for the sole purpose of staying fit-ish while having fun, and feeling great about it. But how about those Facebook status updates...seeing "so and so just got back from a 10 mile run and so and so is going out to climb Mt. Tam and so and so just finished 100 x 100 at the pool..." etc. etc. Ah! It's not that I think I should be doing the training they are doing; I can focus on what I need. But it's the whole: someone-somewhere-is-training-when-you're-not-and-when-you-meet-them-they'll-beat-you thing. It can be a little bit intimidating, but definitely more motivating. Everyone's having so much darn fun and energy when talking about their training I can't help but wanna do what I gotta do to have
that same awesome feeling and accomplish what I'd like to!
Today I realized I'm not as far behind the 8 ball as I thought.
I must've been thinking that I was once again as unfit today as I was a year ago. Turns out I'm not! I found that out thanks to an impromptu treadmill session today at the gym. A year ago, it took a lot for me to run at 9 to 10 min/mi pace on the treadmill, and as for intervals, I remember setting the speed to 6min/mi pace just to see what it felt like, and I could barely keep up my leg turnover that fast AND by 30 seconds my heartrate was through the roof. I worked myself up to 3-4min at that pace on the treadmill in my workouts. Amazing to feel my body get more efficient. I love it. Fast forward to today...and after a great movement prep session, I was inspired to hop on the treadmill for some intervals (ESPECIALLY after I found out the gym I'd stopped into here on my holiday travels had Woodways!) I set out to do a set of 10 x (1min @ 10mph + 1min off) yet I got to the first interval at 1min and felt easy! So I ran for 90sec total and instead of needing 60-90 sec of rest (ratio 1:1) I needed only 30sec to recover. Here's how I did the workout (made it up as I went):
10min warm up @ 7-8mph
4 x (90sec @ 10mph + 30sec rest)
4 x (30sec @ 11mph + 15sec rest)
4 x (90sec @ 10mph + 30sec rest)
Pretty typical treadmill session for me: 12-24min worth of work. Goals of the workout: cardio response and leg speed. Over time the goal is to make the hard intervals longer and faster, while maintaining or dropping the rest ratio. Today I hopped off the treadmill for my rest. Next time I might do the same intervals, but try to run easy through the rest (at 6mph for example.)
Still lots of work to do - but this made me happy.
That said, it's midnight here, and I'd like to get another workout in before family festivities get rolling here in the AM...so I'm shutting it
down. Hope you too have had some active adventures admist your holiday celebrations!