Ironman Training Week 1 Beep! Beep! Beep!

So it has begun.  My personal quest for Ironman began this week with a fresh training plan from Coach M.  Here’s how it all came together over 6 days of training.

Swim:  8050 meters
Bike:  70.75 miles
Run:  19.94 miles
Total Training Time:  10 hours 50 minutes

This week was the longest mileage I’ve ever logged in the pool.  What was even more amazing was that while I was plugging away at the mileage, it wasn’t so bad.  I actually didn’t feel like I was doing too much.  I couldn’t believe the totals.  I really was feeling GREAT!

We are in what Coach M lovingly refers to as “Base Training”.  This is when she straps you down with a heart rate monitor and tells you to go slow and not get bored.  Let me recount for you my first heart rate-based running workout…….

It started as any other run.  I was excited to get to go in the afternoon when Jake was down for a nap and Syd was still at school.  The sun was shining, Adam was home and I was out the door.  I planned a 7 mile loop for the hour of running Coach wanted me to accomplish.  I had freshened up the batteries in my heart rate monitor earlier in the day and was kind of excited for the workout (I had a nice long 2 week break……that makes us CRAZIES very excited to workout for hours at a time).  Off I went.


“The heart rate monitor was working.”

Beep.  Beep.

“I need to bump the heart rate up just a bit and settle into the prescribed 130-140 zone of the day”.

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

“Okay.  That must be the signal that my heart rate is out of range.  I’ll back off a bit.  I’m sure I will get a bit more comfortable in just a few minutes once I warm up.”

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

“Crap!  Still too high.  I’m barely moving?  Okay.  I’ll slow down a bit more.”

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

“Really!?!?!?  I’m going downhill!  I’ll take some deep breaths.  I just need to warm up.”

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

You’ve got to be kidding me!  This is going to be the longest run of MY ENTIRE LIFE.  I don’t think I can run slower…..Great…..  There is a little rise in the road…….this thing is going to explode on my arm.

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.
Beep.  Beep.  Beep.
Beep.  Beep.  Beep.
Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

This three beep choir continued for what seemed like forever.  When I finally would drop into the range where it wouldn’t beep I would have to step up on a curb (raising my heart rate) and the thing would go nuts.  I really shouldn’t have left my IPod at home for this run.  I needed a distraction and if I turned the beeping sounds off midrun I would lose all my data (now that would be a tragedy!)  All I could think was at this rate, I wouldn’t make it home in time to pick up Sydney from school.  I was determined to hit the numbers, but it was killing me.

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.
Beep.  Beep.  Beep.
Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

Finally, I fell into a “rhythm” ……. If you can call it that.  I was running so slowly that I was certain that if anyone was driving down the street and saw me, they would think I was walking.  I just kept reminding myself that Coach PROMISES that these workouts will make me faster in the long run……pun intended.

Beep.  Beep.  Beep.
Beep.  Beep.  Beep.

I finally got home, almost 11 minutes over the hour I was suppose to be out.  I had averaged a 9:40 pace and did not do a very good job at keeping my heart rate where it was suppose to be.  Wow!  This base training stuff was going to be a challenge that I didn’t expect.

Coach M assured me that all was well and that I was doing the workout CORRECTLY!  I decided then and there that I would never put the alerts to sound again and I was going to figure this out and reap the benefits.  Luckily, my next heart rate-based run was far better (I had an IPod, no alerts and an EVEN SLOWER PACE).  I guess for now my base training stands around a 10:00 minute mile.  Ho-Hum….

All I can think is how great it will be to train my body to run faster at these low heart rates.  Imagine if your 8:00 pace keeps you at this “minimal” heart rate.  Just imagine where your threshold would be?!?!  You’d be flying and not even cracking a sweat.  That’s what I’m shooting for.  With every beep of that DANG monitor, I will think of the Spring when my legs will be crying for mercy and enjoy these lazy slow moments while I have them.

On to Week 2………..

3 Comments to Ironman Training Week 1 Beep! Beep! Beep!

  1. You crack me up and have me laughing out loud which hardly ever happens! Love your writing style. So entertaining! I feel for you. Same plan for me. WE BELIEVE IN THE PLAN! Just repeat it over and over again :-) Can’t wait for January!

  2. I was also thinking on my “run” yesterday: I am going to just only have 2 fields on the Garmin: HR and time. That way I don’t even know what the mileage is or the pace. Because neither matters at this point. Out of sight, out of mind, right? Just running for the love of running :-)

    • admin

      I was thinking the same thing! If I couldn’t figure out how to do it on the screen, I’m going to use electrical tape to cover up the numbers I don’t want to see :) We are weirdos!!!!! BUT…..We believe in the plan :)

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