For the past few weeks I have had to deal with the fact that here in Winter Park we have snow on the ground. I live at near 9000 feet so that is what I have. I have been traveling to Boulder where it has not been that warm either but at least there is no snow and on my long run yesterday it almost got to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. That is hot for this time of the year here.
Training has been going real well. On SundayI did my longest ride of the year. I did my “gnarly” ride and added a bit extra just to make sure. I left the house at 8:15 AM and I was back at 6:00 PM. Yes we did have to take a few breaks to get warm and drink some coffee. But we totaled about 8+ hours of riding time, 10000 feet of climbing according to Jan and about 120+ miles of riding. I’ll take it. The picture above is at a place called Brainard Lake. When we got to the lake which sits at over 10000 feet of elevation there was a Corvette convention. They were all looking at each others Corvettes and chatting. Couldn’t they find a warmer place to do this?
The two guys with me are Dave on the right who is training for Ironman Florida and Jan on the left who is visiting from South Africa. That picture is a token reminder for Jan of his coldest and highest bike ride ever. Jan is pro I am coaching and I think he is a dark horse for Kona this year. We rode some with him but when he took off he disappeared rather quickly. Not a surprise of course.
So let’s get back to heat training. If you are gearing for a hot race but just don’t live in a location with anything close to what you will encounter the day that counts most, you can still adapt to heat by what you wear in training. A good rule of thumb is to dress on layer more than is really needed to stay warm. So even if it is going to be a 70-degree day, but your race will be in the 90’s, you can add a long sleeve shirt over a short sleeve top as a way to make the microclimate right next to your skin closer to what you will need to be used to on race day. I have 4 layers on the picture above and the top one is really thick. I took it off for the big climbs as it was very hot. I wanted to dump it actually. But I was sure glad I had it for the big downhill rides.
The other thing to do is actually to train indoors. I did some 2 to 3 hour rides on the trainer. My house is about 72 degrees and with a long sleeve top and no wind to cool me off I was sweating bullets. I had to drink a ton. It was also a great opportunity to be on the aero position for an extended time. My last hour of the gnarly ride Sunday was flat and my back felt great.
All my ailments are doing well, my plantar is fine, my calf is better and I feel good. My 2:40 run yesterday went well. I negative split that sucker and had a very low heart rate to boot. My average was about 128. My resting heart rate on a good day has been 38 which is a lifetime record for me. Wow I just realized I have a PR in something. Cool! One the negative side, I am sore from all the volume. I just had a massage and I am hurting. I lost a few pounds but I doubt I can hit the 170’s for race day. That was my goal. I may be racing at 185 which is not great as my Ironman PR was at 163. But what can you do. My motto now is “It is what it is”.
I guess I am officially in taper mode but there is quite a bit of training to be done. I feel fine. I am not burned out and I look forward to getting a bit fitter. That is a good thing. Jan and I are doing a 6000 yard swim session on Friday. I think I can be a much better training partner for him on the swim. That is his weak sport, he is hoping for some good tips from me. I’ll do my best.