Vineman 70.3: Week 1

This week was all about climbing. Metaphorical climbing up the ladder of training (more hours, more distance) but also actual climbing — more than 6,000 feet by foot and by bike on Saturday and Sunday alone.

I’m slightly cursing the way I handled the last couple of weeks of TAG Wildflower training. I know taking a reset week was probably smart long-term, but in the short term, it made this first week a bit of a shock. I wish I’d gotten in a few longer bike rides over the past month, or tossed in an easy morning run back in April like I swore I would but never did. I feel a little like I’m playing from behind. Vineman’s in eight weeks, and that doesn’t seem like much. But then I remember that eight weeks out from my marathon, I hadn’t run more than 14 miles yet. A lot can happen in eight weeks (ahem, self).

A note about how this is all actually happening: I’m training with a group led by the same coach I worked with during TAG. We meet once a week for workouts, and he sketches out a schedule for the rest of the week. But it’s not a Vineman-specific training program, or even a 70.3-specific training program; most people in the group are training for that distance, but there are also people training for century rides, Olympic tris, a couple of Ironman races, etc. I’m using his schedule as an outline but filling in where I need to — especially some extra cycling, if I can handle it, because I know that’s my weakness. In these first couple of weeks, when I’m full of nervous 70.3 anticipation energy, I’m trying to see what it feels like to do extra. If it’s too much, I can always fall back to what’s actually on the schedule.

Anyway. Week one:

Monday: Rest. May eventually want to switch my rest day to Friday, but I haven’t decided yet.

Tuesday: AM: 30-minute easy run + 30 minutes of core/strength work. PM: Drove to my coach’s computrainer studio for my first class — more to come on that, but it was 90 minutes of cycling with a power meter. Others in the class headed out for a transition run after the ride, but I didn’t have my shoes. In retrospect, this was a bit aggressive for training weekday #1, and the drive to and from the class made for a long day.

Wednesday: AM: 2060 yards of swimming, including 3×500. For the second half of the swim, I was in a circle-swim lane with two very fast swimmers, and they pushed me to a 9:35 500, which is the fastest I’ve gone since I started keeping swim data. Too bad I can’t chase them around the pool every workout! (I have no business being in their lane, but the balance in the pool was weird that day, and I was too fast for the slower lanes. I could hold my own for 500 but probably not for much more than that.) PM: First “big-kid” track workout with Golden Gate Triathlon Club group (our TAG workouts were held in parallel but structured separately). The biggest difference to me was the overall distance of the workout, though that may have been a function of the track being closed (we ran on a .7-mile route around the outside). Including my jog to/from the track, I hit 7 miles, including two 1.4-mile segments in 11:28 (8:01/mile pace, way too fast to maintain) and 11:48 (8:29/mile pace and way more legit).

Thursday: Thought about getting up to ride before work; brain heard the alarm clock and said “oh hell no.” Instead, 12 miles of bike commuting at like 4 mph (I have no idea how slow my bike commute is, but that’s what it feels like). Yoga on the way home.

Friday: The first workout of the week that was mentally a struggle and I think why I want to shift my rest days to Friday. 2000 yards of swimming, including some “fast” 40s in a very crowded pool.

Saturday: Dipsea trail run! The race is a classic, and when I hiked this narrow, root-y, rocky (and beautiful) trail a few years ago, I said I didn’t know how anyone ever ran it. I … still don’t. The instructions were to do what we could in about 3 hours; I made it through 10.5 miles in 3:05 with plenty of hiking. Garmin had moving time at 2:39 (FINE, I stopped to take pictures, plus to check the directions at a few points) and elevation gain at 3250′.


Sunday: Between post-Dipsea soreness and an anniversary dinner featuring a lot of food and plenty of wine, my long ride started a bit later than planned. Pete and I escaped Bay to Breakers for the year and took BART to the East Bay to ride a route known as the Three Bears (three hills — Mama, Papa, and Baby, helpfully labeled as such on the pavement, we discovered) and finish off with a loop of the Lafayette-Moraga trail, which I hadn’t visited since my first 16-miler. Newsflash: when you’re used to San Francisco weather, 80 degrees is hot. But Vineman’s going to be hot, so I better get used to it. I’d also forgotten that the trail has stopsigns every quarter-mile (or more), and I never hit any sort of rhythm in the final 10-12 miles. I don’t think I’ll plan any more cycling routes there, though being out of traffic was nice. 2720′ elevation gain over the 40 miles. Plus 6 miles to/from BART and a 10-minute “transition run” after the ride home, though how “transition-y” it was after sitting on a train for a half-hour is surely debatable.

Week One Stats

  • Swimming: 4060 yards
  • Biking: 40 “real miles” + 18 “city miles” + 90-minute computrainer class (?? “miles”)
  • Running: 21 miles (11 on roads and 10 on the Dipsea, if we’re calling that running)
  • Other: One yoga class, one lifting session, not enough foam rolling
  • Most proud of: Not quitting on the long ride when we biked past the train station at mile 20
  • Need to focus on: Not freaking out about not doing enough
  • Can’t wait for: a Seattle adventure this weekend. Fingers crossed for good cycling weather.
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One thought on “Vineman 70.3: Week 1

  1. Looks like a great training week!! Nice job swimming with the fast swimmers. That will definitely make you a better/faster swimmer! My friend lives in the East Bay and she was talking about that ride. So funny!! Sounds like a good one!

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