IRONMAN CHATTANOOGA 2019 TRAINING
WEEK 20 – Monday 7/15/2019 – Sunday 7/21/2019
Week 20 is finally over and two-thirds of the training plan is in the books. This week though – wow did it get warm.
I first noticed the heat on Friday, a 75-minute run. I do my runs smack dab in the middle of the day when I get off from work. I was seeing heat advisory warnings early in the week, and of course, I scoffed at them. The Tues./Wed./Thur. workouts were really the typical summertime heat stuff, but Friday came and I started the run with pretty warm and humid conditions. I felt pretty good for the first three miles and I was thinking I would just do an out and back on the bike trail, but when I got there it offered no shade and I was feeling the heat pretty well. I decided to head to the other forest preserve trail and make it a loop run instead, hoping that the shade would keep me cooler. It did, but the hills and humidity were starting to get to me. I ended up walking quite a bit and kept thinking about getting more water.
I finally got to the park district office and was really feeling the heat at that point. Sort of shuffling along and walking. I went in and basked in the air conditioning in the lobby for about ten minutes and refilled my water bottle with cold water and rehydrated myself. I was about a mile and a half from home and started out with a newer outlook on finishing that portion, but when my watch hit 75 minutes, I decided to walk the remaining 3/4 miles home. Glad I did.
Saturday came with a prescribed 4-hour bike ride followed by a 45-minute run. I was a little concerned about that, and decided to get up at 4:30 and hit the trail by 5:30. After making sure I had all my gels and extra water bottles, I hit the road. The skies were overcast, so I was very grateful for that. But it was still 80 degrees and humid and would get worse as the day went on. Fortunately, on the bike, you get the wind cooling you down, but I was sweating within ten minutes of the start. Two hours into the ride I did the same dumb thing I did last week and went a little bit further so that I would hit 35 miles, making the total trip 70 miles. But I knew I had been riding into the wind, so the little bit of extra riding would equal out in the end.
The tailwind was awesome and the remaining ride home was mostly enjoyable. Somewhere around the 3:15 mark things got interesting, and I was no longer worried about the weather.
First up was a flock of geese crossing the road, and they couldn’t just turn around, no, they had to walk right in front of me.
Next, my chain fell off the big ring and landed on my crank by my right shoe. I was cruising down a hill and had some good speed going, so I just figured that I would coast until I slowed down and then I would stop and fix it. But as I looked down it looked like I could reach down and grab it, so I decided to risk crashing and try to get it back on. I did it! Here’s me celebrating my achievement:
After getting the chain back on I came upon a farm tractor going down the road. Usually, 100% of the time I’m the one getting passed by a vehicle, but not this time! I was catching it and thought I had a chance to pass it. I had to wait for an oncoming car and then I made my move.
As an added bonus, up ahead was a group of cyclists waiting for the light and I could see that it was about to turn green as I approached. When it did turn green, I hit the gas and put the hammer down leaving them in my dust. That was fun!
When I got home I was feeling pretty beat, so I opted for the treadmill in the basement for a 5-mile run. I kind of felt guilty about that, but I think it was a sound decision. I would rather live for another day than suffer through a real feel temperature of 105 degrees after four hours of biking.
I rested up and rehydrated as best as I could on Saturday afternoon because I was volunteering to punch tickets for the Joan Jett and The Blackhearts concert in New Lenox that night. It was hot at the start of the event, but we had water and the temperature did come down a little as the evening progressed.
Sunday was supposed to bring some relief with the temperature but after breakfast and a quick look at the weather to check for possible storms, I headed out the door to find that it was still warm and humid! I planned to run 6.5 miles out for an hour and then turn around. I was sweating like crazy again! I refilled my water bottle at the turnaround and popped a salt capsule to replace the electrolytes, but I was starting to suffer. I think my critical mistake here was the sweat-fest I had the prior two days as well as not rehydrating enough before this run. I dragged my butt back and finished 12.5 miles of the 13.1 I had hoped for. Oh well, live for another day, again.
Looking ahead to the next ten weeks left of training and things are certainly going to heat up, not just with the weather but also with the intensity of the workouts. I am going to have to be more cognizant of the weather as we head into the heat of the summer and the longer bike rides and runs to come. It’s starting to heat up in more ways than one.
WEEK 20 TRAINING TOTALS:
Swims: 2 total, 2,400 total yards
Rides: 3 total, 108 total miles
Runs: 5 total, 36.5 total miles