Last night, I surrendered. It doesn't come easy to me. This giving up, but that is what I did.
After my race on Saturday, I had a long bike ride on Sunday. Liz said that I could do three hours if I wanted, but 2.5 hours was OK. I wasn't really happy with my long ride from Monday. There to fore, I decided to give the three hours a go and see if I could hit 56 miles again.
On the way out, it was apparent that my legs were less than a hundred percent, which was to be expected. I kept it Zone 1 for a while, crept up into Zone 2, then held it steady there. For a brief period of time, I allowed my HR to creep into Zone 3, and no. That group of triathletes I blew past from the Atlanta Tri Club had nothing to do with it. When I ran out of steam near the turn around, they re-passed me like I was standing still.
The way back was mostly steady Zone 2. I didn't quite negative split the ride, coming in about 3 minutes over, but I was happy with that. I made it to Jimmy's soccer game on time then got to spend dinner with my father and step-mother who were in town for the weekend.
Monday was special. With all the soccer tournaments, I've had to take my rest day on the weekend and use Monday to make it up. Having Monday off this week was just awesome.
I waited until the end of the day Tuesday to do my long run of the week. The plan was to spend the first thirty minutes building from Zone 1 to Zone 2, then 45 minutes building from Zone 2 to Zone 3, then everything I got for the last 15.
Everything was fine through the first part of the workout. I ran down the hill and over to Hobgood Park where its relatively flat. When I started to ramp up in to Zone 3, my legs really started hurting. After four loops of the park, I got really really bored and decided to take a different tack. I ran down to the entrance of my hood, up the hill on the other side and onto the flat mile stretch of road where I do my bike intervals. Was able to hold Zone 3 for the full two miles out and back. By the time I got back, my legs felt like I was at the end of the run in a half Ironman! I still had two miles to get home, and two big hills to tackle to boot.
I held Zone 3 to the base of the hill, about 1.5 miles from home, then used a combination of run/walk to finish up the run. I walked into the house, sat down in my chair, and surrendered. I was a beaten man. These last two to three weeks have really kicked my ass. Taking on soccer matches to ref was probably not a good idea, but a man does what a man has to do.
Physically, my body is exhausted, but I know it will recover strong and be ready for race day. Mentally, I am glad these long training days are a thing of the past. I am ready to get this race done and over with. Not to fear. This is not a negative attitude. Just relief and a sense of "it's time to get on with it".
Bring on the taper. Let's get'er done...