Three Months Into Training

Yes dear readers, I am still alive. My grand plans of writing an entry every week were clearly unceremoniously scuttled. Over the last three weeks I have been trying to increase the number of hours that I train every week. Along with training and daily errands, I have also been studying for my national exam to complete my registration as a respiratory therapist. I completed this six hour extravaganza of multiple choice questions on Monday. It’s really nice to have one less thing on my plate, and to focus more on training.

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No more studying this summer!

This Sunday (July 7th) was another exciting landmark for me. Passing this date means that I have now been training for three months, and we have seven months to go until the Olympic Games are opened in Sochi!

I have been wearing my Garmin GPS watch for about half of the practices I do over the last three months. It’s satisfying to watch the numbers grow. I have managed to put in 1289km of human powered activity, with 13,227m of elevation gained over the last three months! And the watch produces lovely graphs to boot:

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5x7minutes up Penguin Hill. One of my favourite workouts this month.

Training has been going well over the last three weeks. One of the new experiences for me has been the track running work which I’ve been doing. In late April Petr had me run a 3k on the track as a benchmark to evaluate my fitness.  Since then I’ve been doing weekly workouts on the track which have included 400, 600, 800 and 1000m intervals.  These workouts continue to be the big challenge of the week, especially as the hot and humid weather persists. This week we’re going to test how far I’ve come along. On Wednesday night I’ll be running a 1500m race which the Ottawa Lions are hosting at their Summer Twilight series. If all goes well I’ll follow it up with a 3000m or 5000m the following week.

Since I last wrote I picked up a pair of classic rollerskis. The learning curve has been steep, but nothing like the first time I stepped into skate rollerskis. I’m still working on really committing my weight to the glide ski so that I can control the recovering ski better. Last Friday, I was coming home from a double poling workout (I’m still working on transitioning to a more modern double pole style, increasing the frequency and not bending too far at the waist). on Wolfe Island, but I got to the ferry line late so the ferry was already full. I had a nice hour and a half to visit the local bakery, stretch, nap and generally take a break from my normal hectic pace.

"Old School" double poling at Thea's race this spring.

“Old School” double poling at Thea’s race this spring.

I’ve also been able to join XC Ottawa over the last few Sundays on their rollerski practices. They are a unique team in that they are athlete-run, and have a mix of students, professionals and parents who are all competing at a very high level. I find that there is a significant lack of skiers continuing to ski between the ages of 20 and 30 and they do an amazing job of having a place for them to do that. I am grateful to be able to join them this summer!

I’ve been continuing to ride my mountain bike and last weekend in Gatineau park I saw the largest female moose I have ever seen dash across the trail only 50m in front of me. I’m glad the timing worked out and I didn’t end up like this unfortunate fellow.

I also made a quick trip to visit some friends at their cottage near Bancroft, Ontario. Though Bancroft is geographically still far south, and administratively in central Ontario, things already start to feel quite northern there. I was able to take advantage of the quiet (at 6:30am there are more deer than cars on the road!), hilly highways to get some excellent cycling in. I also did a bit of kayaking on the lakes and worked on fine tuning my kayak roll!

Running, stretching, core and weight workouts, eating and napping have been taking up the rest of my time.  See you at the races!

3 responses to “Three Months Into Training

  1. That dip in your heart rate right before you begin to climb again in your 5 x 7 min on Penguin is interesting! If I remember correctly, heart rates are supposed to rise in anticipation of exertion. It looks like you’re entering a zen state!

  2. You mean I have to leave an actual comment rather than just click “Like” ? Well my comment is keep up the good work! Cheers, Ken.

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