Kinetic Half Ironman Training: ONE WEEK Out!

This was my last full week of training before race week! I wasn't sure exactly how to handle this week, since I haven't been training specifically for this race very long. I wasn't sure the training I've done really warranted a taper, but I also didn't want to do too much before race day. To be honest, I didn't have a solid plan for my training this week, but the Universe kind of stepped in a dictated how much training I did and when, and I think it worked out for the most part.

Rest Day
I did absolutely nothing, not even yoga (which I should have done)...

Strength Training
I had to go into work early this morning, so I missed YTri spin/run again (also missed last week for an appointment). I was planning to make it up after worked, but I was SO tired all day from my weekend activities (and not resting/recovering properly) that all I could bear to do was lift weights at the gym. That's my don't-feel-like-working-out workout - anyone else? Not that it's easy, it's just not intense like swimming/biking/running. I was still super tired but managed to lift for almost an hour.

16.1 mile bike @ 14.4mph + 4 mile run @ 8:38
This morning I was going to go to the pool to do a time trial for the race, since I haven't swam a continuous 1.2 miles, oh, at all yet this training cycle...but I was still SO tired that I felt like I could use the extra sleep.

I was still dreading this brick after work - although I have been absolutely loving my weekend training lately, I'm finding it hard to get excited about or even to do my weekday training. I couldn't give in to yet another blah day, though, so I pushed the dread out of my mind as best as I could and told myself I was going to get this done one way or another. It was a gorgeous, albeit windy, evening out, so Ben decided to join me for a ride at Hains Point! The traffic getting down there was some of the worst I've ever seen, but once we made it it was so nice to just ride! I got my tri bike tuned up this week and this was the first time I'd ridden it in ages (okay, it was like 3 weeks) and it felt awesome. 

After our ride I dropped Ben off at home and headed back out for a run. It was the perfect combination of 60 degree weather, low humidity, and 3 days off from running, because I felt amazing. My legs were so light and I felt like I could run forever. I headed out in a different direction than I normally go and, while I had a general plan for the first mile or so, I mostly meandered for the rest until I made it back home. Amazing run!

3.1 mile YTri run @ 8:30 / 2500yd swim @ 1:47/100yd
Hills for breakfast this morning! We did a total of up and down 5 different hills for just over 3 miles total. This wasn't the easiest run for me, as my legs felt really heavy and I was having a hard time picking them up (combination of squats on Tuesday and the brick last night, I'm guessing), but overall I'm happy with how it went. It was tough but I wasn't gassed at the end.

After work I forced myself to finally get in the pool for a 1.2 mile swim. I really didn't want to (I have a lof of anxiety about swimming in the pool - weird, I know), but I knew I'd feel better with this under my belt. I also decided to fully suit up in my race gear, complete with wetsuit since I hadn't even put it on since October 22, so I could get in a good race simulation. I forgot to factor in putting on my wetsuit as part of my workout - woof! Did that thing shrink 3 sizes while it sat in my tri bag during the off season or what?!

I started with a 300yd warmup and that felt awful, so awful I was considering just getting out. I don't know if it was the wetsuit or what, but I just felt It felt so weird to have the flotation from the wetsuit but to feel so constricted and uncontrolled at the same time. After my warmup I started my 1.2 mile time trial and, I'll be honest, it was a struggle. I definitely haven't swam as much this training cycle as I have in previous training cycles, and even though I've swam 2000-2500yds every week at a fast pace with my swim group, the fact that I haven't been doing longer endurance sets was brutally obvious today. I spent several laps seriously questioning if I had the endurance to make it through all 43. I'm also out of the habit of swimming alone, so that was an additional hurdle to get over, to keep convincing myself to keep going even when I wanted to quit. I really thought I'd be faster, and I was really disappointed not only in my speed but by how much I struggled. It was such a disappointment to go from swimming 2.5 miles straight at this pace at the peak of Ironman training last fall to barely hanging on for half that distance today. I really beat myself up over this, but I looked through my old Garmin data and realized that I couldn't swim this fast a year ago even on a good day. I've also really been working on my bilateral breathing and breathed every other stroke about 95% of the time, so I guess there's been some improvement in there somewhere!

2650yd YTri swim @ 1:46/100yd 
Less than 12 hours after last night's swim, I had to get up for my YTri swim. I was surprisingly mostly awake when my alarm went off, but I went back to sleep after eating breakfast (side note - getting up a little over an hour before my workout, having coffee/light breakfast really quick, then going back to sleep for like 30-45 minutes is my new jam) I did NOT want to get up. YTri swim is really the worst because I am in a group of fast people and I love but also hate it because it is SO hard. I was so intimidated when I heard the workout today: 5x50, 4x100, 3x200, 2x300, 1x400, which doesn't even look that bad written out but it scared me. Usually our coach doesn't even tell us what the workout is and just gives us our sets as we go, and maybe she should keep it that way. But I made it through all of them, even if the fast 200s weren't as fast as they were supposed to be, and even if I only got through 250 of the second 300yd pull buoy set because my pull is SO SLOW. Ultimately this ended up being my longest post-Ironman swim!

8 mile run @ 8:40
This weekend didn't go at all as planned, and I ultimately I found myself back home at my parents' new house (same area, different house) on a Saturday afternoon with 8-10 miles to log - and was lucky enough to find TWO friends to join me! After too many drinks last night, too little sleep, too early of an alarm this morning, and too long of a drive home, I had seriously low expectations and was fully prepared to slog through this any way I could. It went shockingly well and I actually felt really strong! We did 2 loops of and out-and-back across the tallest, steepest bridge in the area (144' high and 1.2 miles long) with some running around the park at the bottom of the bridge. I hadn't run there since a 5k over the bridge that I ran 3.5 years ago, and it was a lot of fun! Hard, but fun. The wind was really blowing - 15mph, with stronger gusts at the top - and of course it was a headwind when we were running up the steeper side of the bridge! But the weather was amazing - cool and cloudy with a little rain, but still warm enough for shorts - especially after last week when it felt like I was running in an oven!

52.23 mile bike @ 14.4mph + 1 mile run @ 9:59
I had planned to ride 30-40 miles then run 3 or so, but like I already said, things just didn't end up as planned this weekend. I did get to ride with my group, and my dad was able to join for the first time since our IMNC training last year, so at least that part went like it was supposed to! Due to some prior commitments we were short on time, so we rode for just under an hour and a half before calling it quits to move on to our respective social engagements. I would have felt better about getting in the full workout I wanted to do, but I know deep down that what I did or didn't do today isn't really going to matter with race day only 6 days away. Like, if I fall apart during the run next week, it's not going to be because I didn't run those 3 miles today, you know? It bums me out to think that way because I strive to be as perfect as I can with my training, but things were just different this time around.

Weekly Mileage
Swim: 5150 yds (2.9 miles)
Bike: 38 miles
Run: 15.1 miles

2017 Miles
Swim: 20.7 miles
Bike: 436.3 miles + 15.5 hours spin
Run: 489.5 miles

Coming up next week:
It's race week!!! It's insane to me to think that two years ago this time I was about to start training for my first half Ironman and scared out of my mind! I trained for 4 solid months with a structured training plan for my first 70.3 and now I'm about to do one as my first race of the season with 4 months of not particularly focusing on racing a 70.3. That's not to say that I haven't been training, just that I started with a strong running focus for the first 2.5 months, then backed off on running and focused a lot on biking for the last 1.5 months, and have swam the bare minimum throughout that time, rather than thoughtfully and consistently building up in each discipline. That's not my preferred method of training, but I did try a lot of new things, learned some more things that work for me and even more that don't, and was able to get in a good amount of training without sacrificing the other important parts of my life (and with Ironman training about to start up again, I really needed that last part while I can get it). And, most importantly, I had fun!

It's a little daunting that this big of a race is my first one of the season, and I hope I remember how to do all of it! I'm nervous about how I'm going to do given that I haven't trained up to my full potential, but I think I've done enough and that race day adrenaline will help carry me through. I'm not expecting it to be my best race ever, for a lot of reasons (and I'll have a post up later this week with my race goals), but I'm looking forward to it anyway!

Linking up with Courtney at Eat, Pray, Run DC!


  1. Congrats on a great week of training! I know the weekend didn't go as planned but at least you will still able to get in some workouts. How exciting that race week is here for you!

  2. Good luck! Have fun - I can't wait to hear about your race. Excited to read your goals as well :)

  3. I can't even imagine doing all that you do - half Ironman training is no joke! I can't wait to hear how the race goes, it sounds like you learned a lot during this training that will serve you well at the big event!

  4. Good luck this weekend!! I can't wait to hear how it goes!

  5. Have a good race this weekend! I look forward to reading your goals and recap (always do).