How I'm ending the day is pretty much how I started it. Tired. Lethargic. Ready for bed. At least I can fulfill that desire instead of trudging out for an early morning brick. Stephanie pretty much had to kick me out of bed this morning, literally. She did so successfully, with the promises of making me oatmeal. It helped. My cycling felt about as slow as oatmeal transfers out from the ceramic bowl to the plastic one. Please. Just. Go. A. Little. Faster.
For whatever reason, I just didn't sleep well last night. I was ready to train at 4:30 in the morning, and since Trudy and Bam Bam have been making more regular early morning cameos lately, I figured what's the use of going back to sleep. So I got caught in that "no doze zone" -- somewhere between being awake and drifting off to sleep. It took me about a half-hour of cycling to wash the malaise off my body and generate some pedal power.
The run turned out much better. The breakthrough from last Wednesday's Griffith Park brick with Coach Gerardo and Richard is really paying dividends now. Despite my general tired state, running at tempo pace (heart-rate zone 3) felt surprisingly easy and relaxing. My heart-rate never rose past 157 bpm but I was averaging what felt like an 8:30-mile pace -- and it was fairly effortless. In the past, I would labor a lot more running at tempo. Granted, I only ran a shade under 4.5 miles in just about 40 minutes. But I felt like I could run another 4.5 or more at the same pace if not slightly better. Given my groggy frame of mind, I'll more than take it.
I suppose the real victory today was simply getting out of bed and doing the work. That's all you can do sometimes, as I've said before. It's the difference between coming close to your race day goals and either meeting or exceeding your expectations. You've got to put in the work, the time, the sweat and the effort -- whether you feel like it or not.
That's really all that today was about. And at this point countless other training sessions I've written about. It's probably the theme of my Ironman training: Do the work. Period.
Speaking of, it's back to work tomorrow morning. At 6. In the pool. Track session in the evening too.
Let's do this.
141 days and counting.