Tri Training (day 1)

Marla Sarris Elmhurst 4 on the Fourth

Yesterday I ran the Community Bank of Elmhurst 4 on the 4th race with my friend Chrissy and my cousin Michelle and that got me motivated to start training for the triathlon I signed up for (and haven’t yet done anything to prepare for) which seems to be coming up fast, a month from Thursday.

Before the 4 mile run yesterday I hadn’t been running regularly but I wasn’t worried. I had run the race before in 2008 and could visualize the path. This time around it definitely felt easier, even though when I ran it last time I had been running semi-regularly to train for it. I think it was a combination of running the entire race with Chrissy or knowing my family and friends were there cheering me on that kept me going. In the end turns out I ran slower than three years ago, but not by much. 2008’s times were: Final – 44:43, Pace – 11:11/mile and 2011’s times were: Final – 45:02, Pace – 11:16/mile. Not too bad for not having worked out much prior to running this time around.

Last night I felt the motivation to start preparing for the tri so I went to bed fairly early (2am-ish) and set my alarm to be up by 10am so I could be up and ready to go do some laps at the Elmhurst outdoor pool for the first time since we’ve lived in town.

I woke up earlier than I had planned because I heard Alpha making unfamiliar noises, I guess we’ve kept him home alone the last few days without having enough play time that he was not ready to sleep anymore. I fell back asleep and of course woke up later than I wanted to. Immediately got dressed, grabbed my cinch bag, hopped on my bike and rode to the East End pool.

Once I arrived I only had about 10 minutes left during the Adult Swim and when I was about to jump in the lane I asked the lifeguard if the lane lines stayed in longer than 12:30p. Her reply: “they stay in all the time”. That was like a slap in the face! That means for the last month while I’ve thought I could only be swimming during lap swim (5am-8am) or adult swim (11:30am-12:30pm) I really could have been going whenever I wanted to! All I could think was, well now I know.

Well I quickly got over that and jumped right in. I started with a 250 (for you non-swimmer people that means 10 laps freestyle – and yes with flip turns) and that’s the exact distance I’ll need to swim for the tri. But, if you are a swimmer you know that’s nothing. That’s more of a warm-up than anything. Well after not having swam in FOREVER that 250 seemed to last a lot longer than I expected. When I finished I decided I’d stay a bit longer, since I could, and swim some more. I then swam 5 IM’s with 20-25 seconds rest in between each. IM stands for Individual Medley and is a combination of all the strokes. One lap butterfly, one lap backstroke, one lap breast stroke and one lap freestyle = IM. When I finished those I figured I’d do another 250 free and immediately get out and transition to ride my bike home.

I expected to feel pretty tired, considering I haven’t swam in a long time and that first 250 felt so slow to me, but the ride home felt pretty much the same as the ride there. I took my route home through Beren’s Park and considered locking up my bike and doing a couple mile run but once I got there I didn’t feel like stopping so I just headed home.

Once I got home I made breakfast: onion, red & green pepper, spinach, avocado and parmesan cheese omelet with bacon and fresh cherries and Jeff woke up just in time to join me for a nice breakfast on the patio.

My plan is do some kettlebell swings and a short weight workout later today and to ride to the pool again tomorrow and get a good swim in for a little longer than today, weather permitting of course. If this beautiful weather continues my plan is to make this a daily routine everyday this week (and hopefully the rest of the month).

I’ll be posting updates of my daily activity to finally make myself accountable for training for this triathlon. My end goal is to feel pretty comfortable by race day: August 7th at the Oswegoland Park District. If you’re free that day and feel like coming to cheer me on, it’s an 8am start and I’d love to see you there! :)

Have you completed a triathlon before? Do you have any tips for me? My ears are open to any suggestions you may have. Let me know in the comments, on Twitter, Facebook or Google+ :)