Life is good but very, very busy. My training is going well and I've had the added bonus of some planning trips up to Pembina for the 24 hour adventure race we are putting on at the end of August. In a sense this is like bonus training, which I am beginning to realize might be pretty valuable. That being said, it's all pretty casual, kind of like an adventure race is for a team that is just out to have a good time. Of course 4 hours on the bike is still four hours on the bike, and i'm learning some valuable lessons.
Yesterday on the four hour ride mentioned above, I squeezed in my fifteen minute training ride by going for broke on a couple of the biggest hills the region has to offer (a monster hill even in Pembina only takes 6-7 minutes to climb when you push hard). Then I rode casually with my co-race planner(Dexter). Then I tore my sidewall beyond repair. I was miles from good roads and going to be very late getting home so my wife could teach her yoga class while I watched the boys. Bummer.
I switched bikes with Dexter and pushed hard again the remaining 10 miles to the car so i could give Tammy time to find someone else to watch the boys. The hour it took killed me. I hand't eaten since before noon (it was about 5 pm), drank my last swallow as i left Dexter, and was apparently pretty dehydrated from the 90 degree day with 80% humidity. I was more broken that i have been since nationals last November.
I felt sick as we started the drive home. I drank three liters of fluids and passed out for 30 minutes. When I woke I felt much better, but didn't have to pee until this morning. Glad to have this wake-up call with still six weeks before Idaho. A few more big missions going over the rest of the course will give me ample opportunity to learn from my mistake.
I had a tough run today. plan was to see where i'm at after all the randomness of the last couple weeks - sioux hustler, then a couple weeks of training/recovery before a 10 day stint of vacation in SD with the family at jason's wedding. I'd sandwich a 4.5 mile tempo run into the middle of an hour outing, aiming for the 9 mph pace (6:40 per mile) - the mythical height of my fitness. At two miles into the tempo run i was slightly behind pace and exhausted and set my sights a smidge lower to 4 miles. I did manage the negative split but was completely spent with the effort and had to walk for a minute before continuing at a slow jog the rest of the way home.
I'm suitably anxious about idaho. I've been here before though - far from where i want to be come race day - and know that there's no real reason to be too alarmed. I just need to find some focus and consistency over the next 8 weeks - the angst will help to ensure that i do.
It's been a month since my last post but i've been plenty busy. two 'vacations' - one of the adventure sort and one of the eat too much sort have been squeezed in with all normal rites of spring (cleaning, gardening, long overdue home repairs, etc). The first, the long awaited (by me at least) sioux hustler trail went off without a hitch - better than expected really on a number of accounts. First of all we got to run some sweet whitewater, a real rarity in the boundary waters i've heard, and second of all the run was rugged enough to be great fun but not so rugged that we got caught by darkness. All in all it took us about 9 hours to run the 34 or so miles.
Then last week I headed out with the family to San Diego for my brother's wedding. It was an awesome time where i caught up with old college friends, got a few precious moments squeezed into neoprene in the pacific ocean, and ate way too much food. I also got a two hour session with an olympic paddle coach and now hopefully have the right wing paddle technique down (fingers crossed) - which will be important for what comes next.
So what comes next? The idaho expedition race - a seven day event that promises to be the biggest AR in the USA this year (because it has the most prize money, of course!) Lots of international teams are flying over, including the powerhouse NZ and french teams. But this is home turf baby, and not some stage race - Yogaslackers has their eye on the prize, or at least the podium. 8 weeks and one taper week between now and then - and three main disciplines to train for - paddling, biking, and running. Fun stuff.