When I have trained for triathlons previously my brick workouts were usually an easy ride followed by 30 minutes running off the bike. That is no longer the case. Now they are 2 + hour rides followed by running at race pace. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger right?
Sorry I have been quiet lately but life has been busy. I hope to blog more this week to fill you in. But in the mean time, I just heard that TrainerRoad is doing an 8 day challenge in honor of the Amgen Tour of California. This is a great opportunity to jump start your cycling fitness while virtually working out with hundreds (hopefully thousands) of people. Head on over to TrainerRoad and check it out. Leave a comment on this post and I will enter you in a drawing to win a month of Training from TrainerRoad. Winner announced Saturday May 3, 2014!
OK, I feel a trend of posts coming now that I am using a coach. I made the decision back in January to work with Jen M. from One 10 Performance and Nutrition and I couldn’t be happier with it! I have really enjoyed not having to figure out what to do everyday and the variety and challenges she presents me with are really working. I have seen gains in all three sports and I am excited to see what happen at Ironman Arizona in November.
Last night I had to run to a specific heart rate for two 15 minute segments. I was to run just below threshold and see how far I could run. It was so much fun! It was nice not to be focused on distance or pace but just my hear rate. I found that actually made the running easier. I have been doing the same on the bike and what amazes me that even though I am holding back on my HR (trying not to go anaerobic) I am still PRing on Strava segments! Just more proof the training is working.
March was a good month overall. I ran the Great Race Chesebro Half Marathon and did much better than I expected. I would say that having a coach is really paying off! Below are the numbers from my SportTracks account (you should check them out as a good place to store all your data).
April will be a busy month. I am doing the L’Etape du California on April 6. 80+ miles with 8,800 ft of gain. It will be a doozy! Then I have having my wedding!!!! Other than those two events it is business as usual. I would like to improve my consistency at doing my core work. I am pretty awful when it comes to getting it done and I know it helps. I need to just STFU and do it…
I was very lucky to have a pair of Saucony ProGrid Guide 7’s sent to me from Saucony to try out. I was very successful in the Guide 6′s so I was excited to try the 7’s. I had bought the Triumph 11’s and ran in them for a short period of time so this review is a little bit of a comparison.
Like I said in my previous review of the 6’s I was very happy with what the Guide shoe had to offer. When I went to the local running store to get a new pair of shoes I thought it was an opportunity to try something new. You never know what magic shoe might be out there. I tried the Triumph and the Cortana (Saucony shoes work for me so that is where I started). I felt like the Cortana was a little too minimalist for me. My foot felt like it was working too hard to land properly. It was a very fast light shoe but I have found that I do better in a stability shoe. I liked the Triumph because it felt like a very well constructed shoe that had stability characteristics but was helping me work towards a more natural/less assisted run. I took home the Triumph and ran in then for about a month. I had two small issues. First the height of the shoe on the inside of my ankle felt too low so my ankles got tired easily. Second, the combination of a more flexible upper and the super cool stretchy laces made finding the right tension/tightness difficult.
Now, there was nothing wrong with these shoes. I really like them other than the fact that they weren’t the right shoes for my feet and running style. Luckily, Saucony sent me the right pair, the Guide 7s.
Once I got into the Guide 7’s I had a better understanding of what my foot need and that is what Saucony calls a guidance shoe. When I ran I could feel the shoe guiding my foot to the proper placement (more midfoot than heel strike) when it landed and supporting it through the whole motion. It had just a touch more stability of the Triumph, and I needed that. It also supported me better in my ankle and immediately I could feel the difference.
Here is the description from the Saucony website,
“The Guide 7 is the ultimate training partner, providing stability with flexibility in a lightweight package. PowerGrid provides responsive cushioning from heel to toe. A fully decoupled SRC crashpad minimizes impact, and the redesigned medial support system creates a smooth transition to midfoot. A flared forefoot design adds support during toe-off allowing the runner to spring forward efficiently and powerfully. Added flex grooves ensure the shoe moves with the runner with comfort and responsiveness. All hail Guide 7! Weight: 8.6oz./244 g (Size 8)”
In my opinion, the Guide 7 is more of a classic running shoe. Less frills for simple straight forward running. The upper is made of a couple different materials so that keeps the shoe from being too stretchy. It maintains it’s form well and encases my foot without being too tight or loosing up as I run. Like the name implies and I said before, it guides my to a proper midfoot landing and an efficient take off as well. It is the shoe my running and my feet needed.
I wanted to take this opportunity to fess up to the fact that I am not doing my core exercises that my coach has put on my plan. She knows this but I thought if I fessed up to it maybe I would become more accountable for this. I know it works. I can feel it the next day/week and I think that is one of the reasons for the improvement in the pool I have seen recently. I just wanted to take this opportunity to come clean. Thanks.
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