Here in the Great State of NJ we are enjoying a very hot and very humid summer. While this is to be expected from time to time, the pattern has been in place for several weeks, with no end in sight. This makes training outside something that has to be planned carefully, and proper recovery is VITAL.
My IMMT training plan called for a 5hr ride/45 min run brick on Saturday, and a split brick, then run workout on Sunday. Because I was to lead the Team NRGY Basebuilders bike ride on Saturday, I decided to switch the workouts.
Saturdays workouts went well. We got a pretty early start, and the weather cooperated with heavy clouds and a bit of light drizzle. Warm, but not too hot. The group seemed to enjoy the country roads and the nice break in the weather. After the group ride, I went out to the Bedminster dirt roads to run my 1:25.
Because I’ve had problems with insufficient recovery from split workouts in the past, I made sure to eat a good meal, and sit in the cool house, wearing my RecoveryPump boots for at least an hour. It didn’t hurt to have the end of stage 15 of the Le Tour on the TV!
I rested and napped until about 4:00pm, then headed out for my 2nd 1:25 run. As I expected, the temperature had increased about 10F, and my pace fell off about 30 sec/mile. But I felt pretty good for the total run.
But Sunday night I blew it. We had plans to go over to a friends house for a big birthday party. I really under ate at the party, despite all the yummy stuff on the table. Even if there wasn’t a big selection of healthy choices, I should have just chowed down. My body needed the calories despite my lack of appetite.
On Sunday, my lack of adequate fueling would catch up with me. I knew the day was going to be brutally hot and humid, so I made a point to get on the road by 6:00am. It was still quite overcast, but much warmer. Within an hour I had sweat & condensation streaming from my helmet & arm rests. By the 2.5hr mark I knew that my lack of fueling the night before was a huge mistake. I had blown through any glycogen in my legs in the hills and I was running on fumes. At this point I had gone through two bottles of hydration and was down to my last 24oz. I stopped to get some more liquids, ate a gel and headed back out. Within a few minutes I realized that I wasn’t going to complete 5 hours of quality training, and any attempt past 3.5 would likely require in much longer recovery. I knew that the following week was going to be another big build week, so I decided to pull the plug when I got home.
As I rode through the swamp and the gel kicked in, I started to feel a bit better, but whenever the road pitched up my legs could not respond. Further my average HR was inching up with the increased heat, and my power numbers were stagnant.
I got home and quickly downed a cold Recoverite, showered and ate lunch. Within a few minutes I was hungry AGAIN, reinforcing the fact that I was seriously under fueled going into the day. I got another full meal down and spent another hour in the RecoveryPump.
Today I’m feeling a good bit better, and the legs seem Pretty well fueled. Today I have a 4k swim and easy recovery run and I’m really looking forward to them both. Once again I’ve learned a great lesson:
Never sacrifice tomorrows workout for today’s workout. Better to adjust the length and/or intensity than to put a big zero in the following day!