IMNC Training - 5 Months Out

It's been weeks since I posted any kind of workout update and 3 months since my last Ironman-specific update. I've made it no secret that the past few months have been the busiest and hardest I've ever endured, so hopefully that explains some of why these have been absent.

When I last updated, I hadn't swam at all yet, my cycling was going fine if not a little lax, and I was super on top of my running.

Oh, how times have changed. 

The good news is that I have started swimming again! I started swimming again in the beginning of April, an average of 1-2 times per week (although none this past week because I moved and haven't joined a new pool yet - but I'm planning on checking out the Y around the corner tonight).

I could definitely benefit from more swim instruction and proper form training, but honestly sometimes I wonder what the point is. The IM swim is going to make up like 8% of my day. I'm a pretty solid middle-of-the-pack swimmer and feel like I'd need to do A LOT of work to see any substantial time gain, and I'm just not sure that it's worth it. My current plan has me swimming twice a week with different speed and endurance workouts, and so far that's fine with me.

I've kept up pretty well with my weekday bike rides, the majority of which I do on the trainer with my Peloton app. My IMNC group decided to do a full century (100 mile) ride in mid-May and although I really attempted to get in some longer distance rides, I really didn't do a ton of training for it. I did a 40-miler and a 50-miler, both on the trainer, but that 50 4 weeks before the century was the last time before it that I was in the saddle for more than an hour. I don't recommend that. I have a recap of that ride coming up later this week.

But despite not really riding a lot...I got a new road bike! I still had my first road bike but have really only used it for commuting around town the last couple years. It was a decent but not super bike to begin with, and since I have really kept it up it wasn't ideal for doing actual rides with. So I've been wanting to upgrade it for a while and I decided to use my signing bonus to do just that as a graduation/new job present to myself. I got a good deal on eBay (like 25% off MSRP) on an essentially brand new (< 80 miles) 2016 Cervelo S2. My friend has an S3 that I've ridden and really liked so I was looking for either an S2 or S3 (same bike but the S3 has nicer components).  There's a pretty big price gap between the two, and although it wasn't easy to find deals on either of them, I had an easier time finding an S2 in my size so I went for it. It's so beautiful and I'm really happy with it! And definitely not think I needed to spend the extra money on the S3, so it worked out. I rode my Cervelo all of two times for like 35 miles total before riding it in my first century last weekend!

As for running...a month after that last update, I injured my foot running the Shamrock half marathon. I was able to finish the race (in a respectable 1:50 and change, only a couple minutes off my PR), but my foot was majorly messed up after that. I couldn't even walk on it at first, and I didn't run at all for 4 weeks. One day I managed a random and miraculous 0.8 mile run, then 2 miles a few days later, and then I didn't run for another 3 weeks. After those first couple of false starts, my real comeback (*fingers crossed*) started about 10 days ago, when I was actually ordered by my Raleigh PT (the only Doctor I saw for my injury who knows what she's talking about) to try a 15-minute run. It wasn't totally disastrous, so a few days later I got a wild hair and decided to try 3 miles on the treadmill. After that also wasn't a disaster, I tried 1.5 miles a couple days later and then the same thing the day after that. Saturday was finally my first real run since Shamrock - I ran 4 miles, OUTSIDE, and I actually left my neighborhood this time!

This whole time I've been doing the run part of my training on the elliptical, which isn't the same thing but at least it's allowed me to kind of keep up with training. Now that I've tried running a little bit, I'm getting the confidence to transition more and more of my running from the elliptical to actual running. I've been able to do about 50/50 for a few runs now - hoping I can slowly keep upping that ratio and my running mileage!

I knew when I injured my foot I was probably in for a long recovery, and I was prepared for that. I knew it could and probably would be a couple months. What I wasn't prepared for was that it wouldnt hurt, but it wouldn't get back to normal either. It's hard to explain, but I just have some...discomfort, and just not normal feelings in that foot now. It doesn't really hurt and doesn't impact or affect my running (I've been amazed that my paces have been fairly close to what I was used to pre-injury!) physically, but mentally I'm aware that something is just different. I honestly don't know what's real and what's psychosomatic at this point!

It's been five months since I registered and I really don't feel like I've done a lot since then, so I have a lot of work ahead of me. Our group decided to get custom training plans from a coach, and we're on week 7 of our pre-training training plan. I've tried to follow it the best I can, but honestly I've probably only been 75% on target. I don't want to make excuses, but I REALLY have had a lot going on and it's been hard to juggle everything. I'm hoping things will start to stabilize enough that I can get back to where I want to be, mentally and physically, when the real training starts.



  1. So sorry about the foot, that has to be so frustrating but go you for working on other parts of the IM. Man I wish I wasn't moving, I'd totally bring you to my pool and give you some swim pointers or bring in my collegiate swimmer sister. Curse you moving schedule :(!

  2. Ebay for the win - congrats on a new bike.
    Excited for you to continue on in training & getting through the IM - anyone that tackles these challenges? My heroes!

  3. Your feelings with your foot are almost exactly how I feel about my ankle! It doesn't HURT, but it doesn't really feel right either. I feel like, if I'm not careful, I start to accidentally alter my gait in order to relieve my ankle, which in turn, is harder on my other leg. I don't even MEAN to, but it's as if I'm subconsciously trying to avoid pain. The only time it really bothers me is when I first get out of bed. I limp SO badly for the first minute of everyday because it's SO STIFF. I'm so hoping that we BOTH get back to 100% normal at some point!

  4. Fingers crossed that your running continues to go well!

  5. So exciting you got a new bike!! I can't wait to hear about the century ride, that sounds so intense (in a cool way). But even more exciting is your 4 mile run! While I'm glad it isn't hurting anymore, I know you're ready for it to be 100% back to normal, so hopefully with a few more weeks of lighter(?) runs it will improve.

  6. You can do it lady! Hope your foot continues to heal up well. And yay for getting in the pool again!

  7. First of all, I just need to note that you're coming back from injury and have still run longer than I have at all in the nearly 4 weeks since NJ Half. And my only excuses are bad weather and someone else's wedding, so you get all the high fives and gold stars. I am so proud of you! I knew you'd be back and badder than ever before you knew it.
    As for being 75% on target during finals, graduating college, moving to a new state, starting a new job, acclimating to a new city, and recovering from injury? No excuses necessary; the fact that you're more than like 4% on target for PRE-training training is unbelievable and just speaks to your awesome grit and discipline. I'm seriously in awe of you almost every single day.
    When does your real training start? I want to do my Richmond cycle right, and though it will of COURSE not be anywhere near as intense as your program, I'm hoping we can sync up a bit so some of your kick-ass nature will rub off on me ;)

  8. Yay for running, and a new bike, and progress! Also - 50 miles on your trainer? That's crazycakes girl!

  9. i'm so happy your foot is at least not hurting. i hope it continues to heal and running continues to not hurt! but seriously 75% on target is pretty darn amazing for how busy you've been, or how much you've had going on. and you still have plenty of time and hopefully things will get a bit more... not calm, but settled. i hope you find a good pool! i understand about the swimming, and not training too hard or focusing on it when it doesn't take up that much of your day and you wouldn't get as much out of it as you'd put into it, if that makes sense. can't wait to follow along :)