I've decided that I really don't want to run outside in the dark and cold. I've also decided that I have no interest in running on the treadmill. This means, no running during the week. I may occasionally run on the weekends - but only if the weather is good and I'm not up skiing. Skiing is my winter weekend focus this year.
My 1.5 month break has been amazing. Luxuious. Restful. However, not doing much of anything has lead to weight gain - probably 10 lbs. Not cool. Also not surprising.
I've discovered this late summer and fall that if I do not have a plan, I simply won't follow through. I'm generally self-motivated and accountable, but if I don't have a specific something planned on a daily basis, then its way too easy for me to sleep in or bum around on the couch. As much as Will and the cats love me blowing off workouts, my waistline can't take it anymore. So, I'm playing "coach" for myself. Monday, I sat down with a calendar and created my own version of TrainingPeaks (in Word) which lays out a daily plan for the whole month. With specific exercises. A plan.
My focus for this off-season is to gain strength on the bike, so I'm better able to ride up hills, canyons, and maybe even a mountain. I started (and then stopped - but I was sick) lifting weights, earlier in the month with an emphasis on leg strength. Knowing that I needed some sort of cardio to build strength, I found a 16 week free cycling program - "Winter Cycling", which is designed to build critical power. Cool. Most of the workouts are short - usually 45 to 60 min long. I can get by on 2 workouts a week, I could do the 3 short rides, or I could do 4 rides a week (3 short and 1 long). I highly doubt I'll get in the long weekend ride (hello, skiing!) but 2-3 short rides on the trainer are achievable.
I've also joined a new swim team, my 3rd this year. Hopefully this one will stick. I know that the workouts won't completely meet my swim-snobbery standards, but for the time being, just getting in the pool and having friends there with me will be enough. I can always show up early if I want to get more yards in (which I will probably do this spring).
Finally, I registered for the Chilly Cheeks Duathalon series. I have no plans of really racing these. Its more like an excuse to get out there, run at least once a month, and keep my skills sharp. The first one is this Saturday. And we're expected to get 5 inches of snow tonight, and the high temp for the day is 22 degrees. (!!) (the low is 10 degrees and the race is at 10 AM.). My lovely husband, upon hearing that I signed up for the race AND upon hearing the weather report laughed out loud. I told him, just for that reaction, I should make him go to the race and spectate. So, yeah. Snow and cold. Looks like I will be racing with my ski gear. All this so I could get a pair of sweat pants that say "Chilly Cheeks".....
So, my plan, is roughly like this:
Monday - weights at lunch, bike after work
Tuesday - swim team before work
Wednesday - bike after work (or before work if something fun is going on after)
Thursday - weights at lunch, bike after work (depending on how things feel)
Friday - swim team before work
Weekend - ski and maybe run. Tri club has a Sunday run group, so I may join in.
This is my third day on the plan, and my legs are sore. Not dying sore, but more like "hey, what is going on?!?!". Was I sore like this every day during my IM training? I don't remember being sore all the time. Hopefully this is just an effect of being a couch potato. Either way, it feels good to be back and doing something.