March Update

March 2013 has been difficult as far as weather goes. I don’t recall a relatively mild winter lingering this long and its making spring seem like a very dim light at the end of the tunnel. It will happen it is just agonizingly slow getting here.

With all the weather woes, my spin bike has been getting abused quite a bit more than I anticipated, and it has done an admirable job. Granted, spin bike workouts aren’t the same as being on the road, but fitness is fitness regardless of how it comes.

I am trudging through Build 1. Workouts have gotten markedly harder and more pointed toward building sport-specific fitness. Lots of short, high intensity work tempered with longer stretches of almost-high intensity work. The first week of Build 1 was an absolute killer and it couldn’t be over fast enough. Week 2 was laid out the same as week 1, and I went through it without so much distress and I took that as a good sign.

Week 3 means added time and more training stress and so far I am handling it well. The last week of this cycle is next week which culminates in my first race – and first marathon – at Swanson. Remind me after its over that I said here its only a training race. As long as I don’t implode and come away with some decent lap times I’ll be happy.

Lifting has gone well – almost too well. I got into a groove of adding weight to everything but ended up with some very sore shoulders. Fortunately, good sense prevailed and I backed off before I injured something. Squat work is going good but the soreness from multiple sets of heavy-ish weight was lingering too long so I backed up on the weight there too. I’m still doing  many more sets than I have ever done in the past with some moderate weight. My legs look better and feel healthier (even my knees) than they have in years.

The Wednesday runs have become something I look forward to, a little. Boredom is one of the biggest factors now, but I am determined. The three mile goalpost fell a couple weeks back so to keep it interesting, and to add a little speed, I am breaking the distance into .5 mile chunks, trying to run the chunks a little faster than I would the whole distance. Hopefully I can eventually string the chunks back together for a faster overall run.

Weight is still an issue. Legs and arms are thicker and shoulders are more defined. My waist is still the same although my pants fit a little tighter because of some increased hip and thigh thickness. At least that is what I am telling myself. That pesky scale is just not cooperating. I loathe idea of cutting calories again because i have been able to finish all my workouts this spring and I have a hard time with that during times of limited caloric intake.

I compared 2012 and 2013 training hours and intensities and it was almost laughable. I have invested about 30% more time and effort into training this year over last. This year I changed how I calcuated total time and training stress counting only about 25% of all the strength (yoga, tai chi, calisthenics, weights) time I put in into the total equation. Applying the new formula to last year’s log truly was laughable. It is no wonder I honestly thought I was going to die at the first race of the year.

Here’s to the promise of spring, sunshine, and warm weather. See you back here in a month.

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