My final big build for Ironman Boulder arrived much sooner than I anticipated. I had a rest day after Great White North and then it was time for my biggest week of training! I had a couple of long bike rides after work to kick off the week. To maximize training and family time I rode from our new house and explored some “new to me” routes. Unfortunately to get to the best riding routes it involves a steep climb up a hill within the first 5 minutes. Nothing like a big hill climb to try and warm up your legs!
Luckily the scenery was beautiful and the weather was lovely to help keep my mind off the endless hills I was riding on super tired legs.
Just one of the neat things I saw on my new route...
When it came time for my three hour long run my legs were knackered. The first hour of the run was a struggle. It felt like I was shuffling because I was just too tired to properly pick up my feet. I had to really dig deep to stay positive because I just felt so blah. I figured it was good mental training for when those miles on the run at Ironman are going to hurt though. You just have to keep forging on.
As is often the case in Ironman things can turn around and all of a sudden my run felt awesome. It was a good reminder that at Ironman you can be assured that you will have ups and downs on your day…but those downs don’t have to last!
My 180 km ride did not start out on the best foot. I had planned to meet my friends in Canmore for a ride out to Banff and Lake Louise, my favourite route through the mountains. Just outside of town the tire pressure warning light went off on my car. I pulled over as quickly as I could but this was no slow leak. It was Flatty McFlaterson. (And sadly not repairable which on an all wheel drive car sucks because you can’t just replace one tire.) Luckily my friends Kelly and Mitch weren’t too far behind me so they were able to pull over and help change the tire. We had to devise a plan where Neil could come pick up the car (sometimes being a one car family has its disadvantages) and I hopped in the truck with Mitch and Kelly to keep heading towards the mountains. We were well behind schedule and that stress was not ideal to kick off my longest ride and the workout I was worried the most about.
Something managed to click inside me and I was able to move on from the flat tire incident. I had an amazing ride out in Banff and we got our full 180 km in. I was pretty happy with my nutrition on the day too. The only thing was by the end of the ride I was getting very tired of drinking EFS. I think on race day I’ll need to grab some water from the aid stations to supplement my hydration and hopefully fend off flavour fatigue.
So now it is all about the last few taper workouts. The first time I trained for Ironman I was so over training at this point that I think I sat on my butt for most of my taper. I’m so happy to reach this point and not feel completely burned out!