2 Brief Days of Spring

Bright and sunshiny day

100000000000000000% better than the trainer

I had a smashing training week last week. And then I got tired. Very tired. Sleeping for 12 hours kind of tired. So I had a bit of rest Thursday and Friday and then went back at it on the weekend.

Saturday Bike Ride in RCP

On Saturday I woke up to sunny skies, 65F weather, and moderate winds, which meant one thing and one thing only: biking outside. The Coach has been pretty insistent on this whole riding the bike multiple times week, and this conviction doesn’t seem to waver even when the weather is crappy. Much to my dismay. This unfortunate quality results in a lot of situations similar to the one below.

Pain cave

Lucifer is unimpressed with my whining.

I don’t know what it is about the trainer, but it remains one of the most boring, frustrating and painful bits of triathlon training. Anything over an hour is basically torture, even with music/magazines/Netflix/Twitter to distract me the entire time.

Cat being strong

Comeuppance for all those photos she takes of me.

So getting outside this weekend was glorious. I met Cat down in Rock Creek Park and we did a long skinny loop of RCP/Beach Drive. Given the time of day and the weather, trying to maintain any sort of speed in RCP around all the walkers, joggers, and rollerskaters was hell, but once we got out into Maryland and onto Beach Drive, it was lovely. It was good to get out and stretch on the bike and remember how it all works. I ended up with the most leisurely of 30 mile rides (complete with 30 minute stops to chat) and I regret nothing.

Rock Creek in all its glory

Snow! Water! Sun! Potholes! (Annoying people not pictured)

Sad Loss of Garden Bees

I also had a chance to check out the bees in my garden on Saturday morning. I knew when I saw no one out flying that they hadn’t made it through that last polar vortex. We opened them up and sure enough, the hive was dead. My hive autopsy skills leave a bit to be desired but as best as I can tell they died of cold. The queen probably failed (there were no brood anywhere) and hive was probably too small to keep warm (they had plenty of food). I will try again this Spring with a new package. The good news is that with the failure being cold rather than disease, it should be ok to reuse the comb. This will give the new bees a head start.

Sad, empty combs

Sad, empty combs

Sunday Running

Despite some equally warm temperatures on Sunday, I did my Sunday run on the treadmill with a friend. It was what I consider a pretty easy run – 30 minutes Z2, and then a building time of on/off intervals at 5K pace plus a cool down. I misunderstood the treadmill’s math and thought a 10 min/mi was a 12 min/mi, so my 5K pace was a wee bit faster than I planned. But when the longest interval is only a minute and a half, a 10:30 pace is completely survivable if not quite honest in what I could sustain for a 5K.

Treadmill log

No, really, that is me getting faster. I swear.

Despite the fact that I am feeling tight and creak-y and only running 2x a week, my run speed is slowly getting faster. Also helpful: I am probably the best at executing run workouts whereas biking is still an all over mess and swimming is…well, I can execute the sets if not the speeds (I have two swim speeds: leisurely and sprinting). But with running I have a better sense of how my paces match up with my heart rate and how hard I need to work in order to switch from one HR zone to another. This makes pacing intervals immensely easier.

For the time being, I am still enjoying training and building my base back up. Hopefully it will continue to be a joy once the winter finally melts away and we get some consistently decent weather (it’s snow again today). My spring calendar has been getting a bit of a workout already. Seems like every weekend is starting to fill with races, rides, gardening classes, and bees. I’ll share my schedule once I’ve firmed up the plans a bit.

Happy Tuesday!

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