Swim: 0 m/0 m
Bike: 6.35 miles/6.35 miles
Run: 2.4 miles/2.4 miles
My first official workout of my triathlon training, and, coincidentally, of the year, was a good one. Taking a cue from my almost-3-year-old daughter, who was riding her new tricycle in the driveway when she suddenly dismounted and began sprinting back and forth, I decided on a “brick” workout. (A brick workout involves training on two disciplines in the same session.)
I began with a moderate ride around my hilly neighborhood and, upon returning to my house, ditched the bike, helmet and gloves and immediately took off on a run. I felt like I was wearing sandbags around my legs, with each plodding step taking twice the effort of a normal run. I was timing this segment of the workout, and I knew it would be dreadful. Only later did my calculations show that I had hit a 7:42 pace for the run, which is pretty close to my normal around-the-neighborhood pace.
Does that mean that biking, while making my legs feel heavy and tight, doesn’t necessarily affect my running pace? Or would I have run the course faster if I had not biked immediately beforehand? It’s impossible to tell, but I have a feeling that I will have much to relearn about how my body handles training in this new world of triathlon.
Everything about running – my physical and mental response to almost every running situation – has become almost instinctual after years of training. Running is my comfort zone, where I can let down my guard because I know what has to be done and how it’s going to get done. I know when I need to push and I know when I need to let up. I don’t encounter too many questions about what my body is feeling or what I am capable of at any given time.
It seems as if that’s about to change. I’m essentially starting over.