2021 IRONMAN CHATTANOOGA TRAINING
WEEK 22 – August 1, 2021
I saw a post the other day on one of the triathlon groups I follow on Facebook and he asked if anyone else had a “coach wife” and I knew immediately what he was alluding to. And I have the best coach wife in the business.
I’m not sure Kari intended to be a coach wife, she just kind of had the position forced upon her. After watching me train and do races she just kind of learned about running and triathlon from the sidelines. After I crashed and burned in the 2009 Rockford Marathon (3:43), which I ran alone without her or other family being there, it resulted in me taking a trip to the local hospital for an i.v. and a long walk of shame back to where I parked my car. She swore after that happened that I would not be doing these things on my own anymore.
As I train for my fifth Ironman she is inquisitive about what I’m doing, especially on the weekend. The other day she inquired about how long my Saturday bike would be and I said that I thought it was four hours. “Again? You’ve done the four-hour ride the past three weekends.” I admitted that I was using a spreadsheet of the plan that my buddy Jeff shared with me, so I thought it could be a typo, but after checking the plan in the book, sure enough, the plan has three, four-hour rides in a row. It is interesting how she picked up on that and I was just taking it for granted that it was correct.
Kari also began running and biking, and has learned even more about the sports and what they involve. The funny thing is, she never asks about my input.
Last night when I was turning in for the night, I looked at my watch as I laid it on the nightstand and wondered aloud if its 44% battery would be enough to get me through my planned five-hour ride. Coach Kari immediately spoke up and said “Why don’t you just charge it?” knowing full well that my charge cord for it is right there next to the nightstand. I didn’t debate with her or hesitate about it for even a second, I just grabbed the cord and plugged it in.
There are numerous other examples, but in reality, it’s just her way of showing that she cares about me and my dumb adventures. And I’m very glad to have a coach wife – make that the best coach wife ever.
I decided to swap Week 22 of the plan for Week 23 because I am doing the Big Hill Bonk – Last Runner Standing event next weekend and I wanted to take advantage of a taper week that Week 22 had in it.
I started the week off pretty good, doing an open water swim with my coworker buddy Tom in Lake Michigan at Ohio Street Beach, Chicago. It was a well-run event by Lifetime Fitness/Chicago Triathlon. Tom got some great experience in some big, open water and also some well-earned confidence in being able to swim in those kinds of conditions. I made him try my large Xterra wetsuit and I think that was a good experience as well. He may do better in an XL, as he has more muscle than I ever will.
On Thursday I got sick with some sort of stomach bug and it was bad. Kari thinks I am ignoring a bigger GI issue, but it was just a stomach bug. And the two things that come hand in hand with a stomach bug wiped me out. I was not doing well. But it ran its course in about a day, and I used Friday as a rest day to rehydrate and recover. I was concerned that the planned five-hour ride on Saturday would be too much, so I swapped it with Sunday and things worked out well. I’m still needed to stay on top of hydration, but I’m doing better.
On to the Big Hill Bonk and running infinite 4.166-mile loops for as long as I can!
Swims: 1 – 1650 yards
Rides: 3 – 120 miles
Runs: 4 – 28 miles