I'm having a great time hanging out with fellow bloggers and athletes at the 3rd Annual Wisconsin Brick Adventure. It's pretty incredible to meet so many of the people I've gotten to know online. Simply Stu, Rural Girl, Steve in a Speedo and his wife Pharmie, Wil, TriSaraTops, xt4...these are just a few of the awesome people I have now officially met. I love reading and following their journeys and seeing them in-person has been icing on the cake. Plus I got to have dinner with new friends like Amy, Debbie, and Alan from Cleveland.
This morning we started with a swim in Lake Mendota. The IM is in Lake Monona, but news of a sewage spillage put a damper on plans to swim there. I don't even want to think about that right now and I'm not sure how I'll mentally get past that when they tell us "it's open" again. I will, somehow, but really - when it comes to things like micro-organisms in my water, bacteria in my food, and sewage in my lakes I'm more in the "don't ask, don't tell" camp. I know this stuff is out there and we subject ourselves to a lot worse without knowing it, but when I get in Lake Monona and inadvertently drink half of it in a stroke/breath mishap or swish a lot of it around in my mouth because I have a tendency to do that to entertain myself, I don't want to be thinking about poop. Sorry. TMI.
At any rate, Lake Mendota is supposed to have 3 unrecovered bodies in it but that somehow still ranks higher than sewage in my book so I went for it. It was a good experience. Nice chop, which is something I could use more experience with. Simply Stu said swimming in Mendota once a week or so during training would make excellent prep for the swim in Monona, which is a bit calmer. I think this sounds like a good plan.
After the swim, the large group headed out onto the bike course where we met our share of wind followed by some stormy rain. And it was great! OK, I exaggerate just a tad. My legs were heavy and my quads felt like overstretched rubber bands. I'm still recovering from High Cliff but I didn't want to miss this chance to hit the course with my new friends. I did 1 loop and hit 65 miles. On tired legs I averaged 14.2 mph. This is when I did my calculation...
If I can ride at that pace with super tired legs and if I kept that pace up for 112 miles, I could finish the bike in 8 hours.
If I could hit 15mph with fresh, recovered legs, I could give myself a decent buffer before the cut-off time.
Yes, there are a few "ifs" in these calculations but since the bike is my weakest event, I stay awake at night worrying about making the cut-off. My goal in the next training phase is to kick that pace up to between 15-16mph consistently. If I can do that, then I can stay awake at night thinking about how to manage the pain on the run.
This is progress for IronMin. Serious progress.
Great day, great new friends, and training progress - nothing can spoil that. Not sewage, or floaters, thunderstorms, or gusts of wind.