Experience is a great teacher and, while it can't compete with talent, it can certainly trump youth.
So, you would think after competing in several triathlons (about 15 so far) and training seasons that I wouldn't make the mistakes I make; especially ones I've made before. I've ignored signals from my body and ended up with injuries, I've ignored training guidelines for proper progression and have ended up with injuries, and I've toted insufficient amounts of fluids and flirted with dehydration. Whether I ignore the rules on purpose or accidentally overlook important details, the consequences are the same.
Today was yet another lesson learned the hard way though, fortunately, without serious consequences.
I thought I'd thought of everything as I packed my bag for swimming, followed by running, followed by a shower and a third change of clothes. I remembered the bathing suit, the goggles, the iPod, the running shoes, even the GPS watch. It wasn't until about the mid point of my run that I remembered hydration. And fuel.
I drink water before and after I swim but not during; I want to make it through the practice without a bathroom break. So I went about the morning's swim as usual, though I added an extra 700 or so meters to the workout to end up with a cool 3000, (swim workout to follow), which is almost 2 miles in the water or about 120 lengths of the pool. (I found a calculator that came up with a rough estimate of about 866 calories burned/hour for a swim at my pace.)
After the swim, which was about 70 mins in the water, I did a quick change, drank about 11 oz of water, and hit the road for a 5-mile run.
It was about 80 degrees outside, sunny and humid. When I hit the 2.5-mile mark, you could have heard the energy sputter out of me like a car running out of gas. Not only was I way-short on adequate hydration (I've learned that I need about 22oz/hour on an average temp day, but today I tempted to operate on 11 0z of water for a 2-hour workout) but I also completely forgot about fuel! Which is crazy because I am always thinking about food!!
For workouts of 90 minutes or more, I usually need to replenish my energy stores every 45-60 minutes. At about 11 AM and 100 minutes into the workout, I recalled the whole wheat English Muffin with almond butter and honey I'd had for breakfast--at 8:15 AM; 3 hours earlier. That muffin was probably long gone before I even left the pool.
I literally ran out of fuel. Hit the wall. (By August I will be focused on "The Wall," but, for now, I'm simply focused on the wall.) I convinced myself that there was no shame in walking a few tenths up a particularly challenging hill. My pace was so slow by then that it really didn't matter. A Hammer Gel really would have come in handy; visions of Montana Huckleberry packets danced in my head.
Lesson learned: Forget the iPod; don't forget the fuel.
*3000-meter swim (approx 866 cal)
*5-mile mostly run (590 cal)
(My iPod was a trip today--fav fun run tracks included some catchy tunes from Beasties, Limp Biskit, Godsmack, Run DMC and good 'ol MJ.)
*20-mile bike (1160 cal; Max speed: 38 mph)
B:The little English Muffin that could (n't)
L: Stir-fry veggies w/tofu, strawberries, chai tea with soy milk
D: Homemade Mac-n-cheese, salad, grapes (My family was happy to see some good 'ol comfort food on their plates tonight. Recipe will be posted on facebook.com/triathlonmama)
T: Ice cream
Do you think all of this equaled 2616 calories?
Swim Workout #8 (3000)
Warm Up (200)
200 Free, easy
Set 1 (600)
Set 2 (800/Interval)
4 x 50 Fly down, Fly kick back @ 1 min
4 x 50 Backstroke down, Backstroke kick back @ 1 min
4 x 50 Breaststroke down, Breaststroke kick back @ 1 min
4 x 50 Free down, rest 5 sec, sprint Free back @ 1 min
Set 3 (700)
200 Kick (IM order)
Set 4 (500)
500 Free, sprint every 4th length
Cool down (200)
IM order down, Free back