Monday May 1, 2017. 5:02 a.m.
Felt like spring out there this weekend. FINALLY!!!!!!
On Saturday we were able to get out on our bikes and get 100 km under our belt followed by a 20 minute run. We did pedal through a few minutes of rain and when the sun went behind the clouds the temperature dropped. It was still cold at times but overall a HUGE improvement weather-wise which led to a huge improvement in our attitudes about the weather😃
This past week’s training went well. My swim times seem to be improving to where I would like them to be on race day. My pace seemed to flatten out for a while but at least during this past week I have seen some improvement again.
On Wednesdays I see my trainer Andy. These past few weeks he has been doing some testing to see where I am at. We do that a few times a year. There as well I have seen strength improvements. Since we were doing that testing we got away from trying to achieve the 8 minute plank. He says that it is back on this week. We got to 6 minutes before we got sidetracked so this week I am told we are back on😩
There is enough to think about when you are preparing to do an IRONMAN and you have all your original parts. I have come to learn that if you are missing a leg like my pal RV, there is even more to think about. Not just the fact that he is missing a leg which poses its own set of challenges but the details within that.
I had coffee with RV last week and I learn some things that RV has to plan out that I would have never thought of. I have known RV for 25 years. I have seen him compete in triathlons, I play hockey with him, I ride bikes with him. There are times where I have forgotten that he is missing a leg. (long story but true, I forgot)
Here are some examples of what RV has to plan for in our IRONMAN this August.
When the horn goes off and we all head to the water, we can start swimming right away. RV has to stop, adjust his swim foot from a walking angle to a swim angle, then RV can start swimming. At this race, you do two loops so at one point you have to get out of the water, run onto the beach and then head back into the water. As RV is swimming in he has to stop, adjust his foot back to a walk angle, walk onto the beach, get back into the water, adjust his foot again to a swim angle and start swimming. All the while the rest of us just get to start swimming.
Also, he can’t run on that prosthetic leg so in transition he has to walk to get his bike gear, he can’t run on it like the rest of us, so that adds time.
His bike prosthetic has no foot to it. It clips right into his pedal. If my bike breaks down and I need some assistance I can keep walking to cover some distance until the support vehicle drives by. RV, not so much. He has no foot on that leg and I believe (I forgot to ask on Saturday) it is shorter in length. He can’t walk on it. RV did say that with a parrot and an eye patch he would look like a pirate though. Also, when he enters transition after the bike he will have to hop to get his run gear, remember he has no foot on his “bike leg” which again will add more time and take more energy.
What really triggered me thinking about all the things that RV has to think about is the run. RV asked me what my strategy on the run was. I said my goal is to run to each aid station and walk through the aid station to eat, drink and regroup. Catch my breath, bring my heart rate down. When I asked him his strategy he said on his running leg (which is a blade foot, see above photo) it is harder to walk on it then jog so walking through an aid station won’t help him to bring his heart rate down. He was thinking he would have to do a “hop” of some type which he felt might help. So, while I can walk to lower my heart rate and rest, RV can’t. He will have to keep jogging/hopping all 42 km!!😳 I ran with him Saturday and even standing on that blade looked uncomfortable.
I guess I never really thought of the details that RV has to go through in his head and also physically try out before race day to make it all work. Which will make this IRONMAN even more special when he crosses that finish line.
I promised JOE, LAZ and RV that I would include this email exchange from last week. This isn’t made up, it really happened. Let me set the scene. We email each other everyday and share what our workouts will be that day. There is always banter and ribbing. Also, we get to see what everyone is doing since we really only meet on Saturdays now to bike. Last week JOE sent out an email that said the following:(I don’t have the exact text in front of me but you will get it)
JOE: Today I am doing one-legged cycling on the trainer.
RV: One legged cycling JOE? I call that cycling.
You may or may not find that funny but knowing JOE and RV like LAZ and I do, we laughed for about 2 days over that. JOE walked right into that one😃😉
Take care. Enjoy the day.