Blue skies. Yes, its a miracle. Two weekend days in a row with blue skies and sunshine. This was the blue we had yesterday, that crystal clear blue we see so seldom in West Michigan. (Something about those wonderful Great Lakes causes us to be the third cloudiest spot in the nation!)
Cold though, almost frost Friday and Saturday nights, but so pretty. A nice change from the last 3 weekends when we had beautiful weather on Saturdays and rain, clouds, wind, etc. on Sundays. Glad to have the cycle broken.
Yesterday I did 7+ miles on the river trail again. I have been much encouraged with my running, but still can't seem to run within myself using the new method. So it was basically another stop and start run, but overall I was okay with that. I'm still learning and trying not to get ahead of myself. I went out too fast and paid the price coming back, but even adding another mile to my distance from last week and doing tons of walking it seemed, I still only added 4 minutes to my overall time.
To better describe this ChiRunning method, other than getting technical, I relate it to using a heart rate monitor. I need to get my rhythm before I can run without stopping it seems.
But here's what I notice as a good thing: no stiff hip flexors--I can now do a hamstring stretch the right way instead of a modified way, I can squat down and pick something up and get back up again, I can sit without feeling crippled when rising; no sore feet--I used to feel as if an elephant had crushed my feet when I'd get done running and hobbled around the rest of the day; no real soreness generally. I'm becoming a firm believer.
After my run, I headed to the pool. I met up with a few of the IM crowd after one of their workouts--7 miles at 7 am (7 at 7), bike 30, run 7, then swim. These guys are really tough. I don't think I am ready for their dedication yet, but maybe that's what happens when you sign up for something like an IM. You do the training regardless. Maybe that's what I need after all.
The swim went great. I remembered my form, and I'm telling you I swam almost 1000 yards before I even realized what was going on. Just this free floating body it felt like, that belonged in the water all the time. Just zip down the lane, turn, and zip back. More like relaxing than anything else. I was not winded, my shoulders did not ache, nothing. A mile done in no time it seemed.
This week I will attempt to get a bike ride in before work at least twice a week so I can run after work. It gets light out by 6:30 am, and the river trail is only 2 miles from work, and less from the Y, so I am hoping for warmer mornings and no rain in the early a.m. at least. That way I have more time to swim also. I pretty much refuse to swim evenings at the Y. It is just a joke. You almost need to make an appointment to get a lane. Mornings are at least tolerable and it is such a pleasant way to start the day. I just realized I only have 6 weeks before my first tri, and while my swim is okay and I can get by on the run, my biking is seriously lacking. I've put in a lot of easy, flat miles, but nothing hilly or serious. I am planning on at least a 20 miler today, but again it will be easy and flat. The bike portion of the tri is hilly so I need to get some more serious training in there. I am waiting for a traffic light to be installed so I can actually enjoy my hilly route soon. You have to cross one of those major highways with no traffic light anywhere near, and I am not brave enough to attempt it on my own or even with a group.
So, once I get out of work today, I will be off on the bike, enjoying the blue skies.