It's that time of year. Well, it's actually 'that time of year' all year long, as I never halt consideration for a race schedule. After speaking with Kurt, he asked I get on top of what I plan for my feasible 2011 race schedule. Sorry to disappoint everyone - I ditched a couple 'focus' running races and currently have no Half Ironman distance event on there, as the focus is Olympic Distance. Early season triathlon out in Rochester is a bust...but there are a few duathlons, which I can't complain about as they can actually act as a very good icebreaker for my multisport season. In addition, with being on the cycling team here at the U of R, I will have a rather full schedule of spring cycling races. Such races that could begin as early as March 5th. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that is two weeks from Saturday. Yep...I'm saying holy crap to myself too. I'm keeping the ol' multisport schedule unofficial at the moment - but it'll be posted pretty soon. As a note, I'll likely be making a special section of the blog for my Recent Results/Upcoming Races.
Now that I've got a good chunk of the logistical stuff out of the way, the "goal" race of the season is USAT Age Group (AG) Nationals: August 20th, 2011 in Burlington, VT. This is obviously a qualification based race: either a top 10% AG finish in any USAT Certified Olympic Distance event, or top 33% AG finish in one of two Special Qualifier Races (one in CT - 6/18, one in VT - 8/7).
Monday was a great training day. Despite only getting 5.5 hours of sleep due to a midterm group assignment that we handed in at noon, the training went well. Woke up at 6:15AM and trudged through the fresh snow for the 0.75 mile walk over to the athletic center (no bus before 7:30AM). Hit up the pool and got in a fairly easy 2000yd (1.14mi) swim with some drills thrown into the mix. Finished up the assignment, had a meeting, then hit the gym to run inside - as the footing outside would still be miserable and it was a somewhat hefty training day. On the treadmill did a progression run: one mile @ 8:00, two miles @ 7:30, three miles @ 6:58, then a warm down mile @ 7:15. Felt really sluggish to start (likely due to lack of sleep/energy), but got pretty comfortable as it progressed. Took a 1.5 hour nap to recover from low sleep, then hopped onto the bike after a post nap piece of lasagna! This is where it got good. Over the past 3 days I have raised the seat on my bike about 1.5cm (0.5 inches), almost definitely due to my increased flexibility since I began some Hatha Yoga. Cycling today on the trainer felt orders of magnitude better than it has for weeks despite some minor calf twinges. And the best part was that I finally got my HR up above 140 and into the 150's without my legs feeling fried, which is impressive considering that it was the third workout today.
It's been a bit crazy here at school with a big team project: big paper was due Monday and a bigger presentation Thursday, which still needs some work. So I'm signing out for the night. Tomorrow: going to test how a track workout feels (6x400m @ ~5:00 pace on Active Rest = 2:00, maybe followed by a few 200's) on the huge increase in training volume. As running right now is not a key focus, if I feel like the workout is causing more harm than good I'll make it an easy 7-9 miles instead. But I'm thinking I'll be fine, just more tired than expected.