24 September 2018

Ironman Chattanooga in 7 weeks (14 to IMAZ)

13 August 2018 Update

Here is the 9th update on training for Ironman Chattanooga and Ironman Arizona. I was asked about my passion for triathlon and why I do it. I have a long, complicated answer that might put you to sleep so here’s a short answer: 
·       I liked the 5+ years I spent as a teenager being a competitive swimmer; triathlon lets me be an athlete again. 
·       I am motivated and inspired by goals. 
·       Triathlon feels like the Fountain of Youth. I’m nearly 62 years old and I certainly feel much younger than nearly all of my peers (most of the time!) 
·       The people – the athletes I coach and the athletes I count as friends – are generally friendly, supportive, positive, and fun to be with. 
·       Being in good shape will hopefully allow me to do more things as I age – hiking, sports, activities with young people, travel, dancing (oh forget dancing… my problem hasn’t been lack of aerobic capacity.)
·       My brother Scott says I do triathlon because I can’t drink. I haven’t had alcohol since 1999, ever since we equated it with making my ulcerative colitis-type symptoms worse, so in a way he’s right!
·       And finally, besides the well-known benefits of exercise (e.g. reduced risk for heart disease), there are studies that indicate that endurance training can have a positive impact on mental capacity and possibly affect the onset of Alzheimer’s. Given my father’s health decline in his 60s and 70s, I want to try to avoid what he dealt with.
There are now 7 weeks until Ironman Chattanooga and 14 wks to IM Arizona and this was my biggest training week so far. I have started working on my race plan for Chattanooga but it still needs more work. Last week I shared my overriding, big, and maybe a bit audacious, goal: to qualify for the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii by finishing first in my age group of 60-64 year old men. The race plan will reflect that. Looking ahead, this coming Sunday I’m doing a ½ marathon. I’ll work it somewhat hard but also don’t want to come out of it super sore or fatigued because that will negatively affect training the following week.

Thursday my fatigue really showed so I cut my ride short and skipped a run when my heart rate stayed extra low. Friday morning’s open water swim was 4300yd, more than the race distance. Saturday was spent coaching our Team Challenge athletes and then doing things with Marc and Courtney, who were down for a very quick visit. Sunday was a big training day: 113 miles on the bike followed by a 3 mile run. I didn’t feel torn to be riding so long since Linda wasn’t home either. I rode my old bike as the newer bike is in the shop getting it’s gear shifting repaired. When I pick it up I’ll also get it refitted to me to see if I can squeeze out more speed without making me work harder. Any changes will be very minor.

Thank you to all of you who have donated to my fundraising efforts as part of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation’s Team Challenge Iron Team. I am getting close to the $6000 mark! If you ever want to add to it, the link is: online.ccfa.org/goto/skipslade 

This week’s totals: 22hr 37min; 211.6 miles
Swim3hr 46min – 12,205 yds (3 swims) - longest: 4,275 yd
Bike9hr 46min – 167 miles (3 rides) - longest: 113 miles
Run6hr 40min – 37.7 miles (3 runs + 1 short brick run) - longest: 17.3 miles

Strength Training2hr 12min

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