Shani and the kids left on Tuesday to go to California. They are going to LA to visit her brother in Manhattan Beach, then off to Rocklin to visit some of our friends there. They have had a great week so far and I am happy they are getting to have so much fun in California.
So what do I do when they are gone? I work, train, train some more and watch the Tour. I had my first 21 hour training week of the season. With the wife and kids gone, I took advantage of having my evenings free and worked with my coach Dana Lyons to ramp up my volume.
One of the big differences for me this week was my cycling. I tried to get a ride in almost every day, including some fun stuff.
I went out on Thursday evening and rode with the Woodlands Cycling Club. They meet at the Stonebridge Church at 6:15pm and ride for over an hour. The fun part is they do these loops of about 2 miles long and do them really fast. I broke the road bike out and had a blast riding fast in a group and even taking off on some breakaways.
In addition to the frequent short rides, I also did two rides of 100 miles back to back on Saturday and Sunday.
My back to back centuries started on Saturday when I rode for about an hour myself then hooked up with the Woodlands Cycling Club again for their Saturday long ride. There were about 20 of us and again these guys brought the speed. The speed they hold for the 60 mile ride is 24+ the entire time. It was fun just trying to hang on. I took a few pulls on the front, but learned I have a long way to go to do anything substantial with those guys. Cycling training is so much more intense than the long and steady you do while training for an Ironman. After my 60 mile ride with them, I stayed on the roads for another 30 miles to get my 100. Because we rode so fast during the 60, I had done a 100 miles in 4:48, well under 5 hours.
On Sunday it was time to ride again. This time I hooked up with some fellow triathletes, Raul, Steve, Steve and Clint. The idea here was simply to ride another 100 miles and get home. However, I found that after about 30 minutes my legs felt really strong. Instead of sitting in and limping through another 5 hours, I was able to put in some nice steady efforts. I was also surprised how well I felt when I got home. The only thing I can contribute it to is a nice fitness boost from the Buffalo Springs race and my bodies ability to recover from cycling versus running.
In conclusion, the week consisted of 12,000 swim yards, 25 miles of running and 266 miles of cycling with a total workout time of 21 hours. Unlike a pro, I had to do this before or after work, so this kind of volume is always a treat to do during the season.
Hawaii is getting closer, and this week gave me a lot of confidence towards my goal of finishing the big one in Kona.
Shani and the kids get back on Thursday. I am ready for them to come home.