Sunday, August 29, 2010


Provactive title, no? Well, at least I hooked you for a moment. Until I tell you this isn't about booze, it's about being tired. Okay, half of you, see you later!

For the rest of you...

I’m not the hardest working athlete out there. Far from it. And I’m not here to convince you otherwise. Wouldn’t matter anyway. Endurance athletics – the running, the swimming, the biking, the hours, the miles … all of it, are personal. Incomparable to others on many levels, despite the numerous times we reveal our race finishes.

Anyway, I start this post with that caveat because I’m tired. Exhausted, actually. My hip is sore when I press on it. My legs don’t really want to run. And my brain is tired of staring at my Garmin.

Why? Because for the last eight days, I have pushed myself. “Crash Training” sort of. Not volume for me, but for pace. I’ve pushed my limits a bit this week with the aim of making pace/speed gains in the coming weeks. I don't have a defined goal in mind, but it would be nice to hold a 7:40/mile pace for 10 miles. Abstact maybe, but I think it is attainable.

It started with the Cool Breeze Century, and finishes with today’s run. Sure, I didn’t put in huge distances (no run over 13, no bike over 50 post-Century). But the little pushes, little forces, add up over the week’s end.

And at the end, I’m feeling it.

So I offer to you a peek at the past week’s work – a summary of the eight days that have brought on this mini-exhaustion. What my life is like outside of the moments you see me, work with me, or read my tweets. Emily-on-the-daily.

My drive home. The daily commute

Granted, my day job (approx 10 hrs/day) has not been crazy. And our West Side Team in Training team has settled into a nice rhythm. So I’ve been able to fit this all in without sacrifice.


Saturday 8/21 – Cool Breeze Century

Bike: 101.3 mile / 6:10:20 /16.4 mph with about 5000ft gain

Sunday 8/22 – Long Training Day
Ran 12.2 miles / 1hr 55 mins
Walk 4.2 miles / 1hr 17 mins
Swim .9 miles/ 30mins

Monday 8/23 – Recovery Run
Ran 3.6 miles / 30 mins / 7.2 mph

Tuesday 8/24 – Brick Workout

Bike 22 miles / 77 mins / 18.1 mph / 4 hill repeats
Ran 2.5 miles/ 20 mins / 7.5 mph

Wednesday 8/25 – 800 Meter Repeats
Ran 5.1 miles / 44 mins / 7.5mph

Thursday 8/26 – Two-a-day Recovery Session (AM/PM)
Ran 3.25 miles / 30 mins / 6.5mph
Biked 11.1 miles / 40 mins / 16.6mph / two hills loops

Friday 8/27 – Tempo Run
Ran 8 miles / 1hr 3mins / 7.6mph

Saturday 8/28 – Long Training Workout

Bike 46.14miles/ 2.6hrs / 17.9mph with about 2500ft gain
Ran 8 miles / 1hr 6 mins / 7.2mph

Sunday 8/29 – Team in Training Practice and Lactic Acid Workout
Ran/Coached 2.5 miles / 25 mins / 6 mph
Ran 9.55 miles / 90 mins / 6.5 mph
Walked 3.3 miles / 56 mins / 3.5mph
Swim 2000 yard / 40 mins

Time: 22 hours
Distance: 244 miles
Calories: 5.6 lbs

Looking at these totals and at the summary of the week (by the way, I never analyze it in this form…), I think my sleep and nutrition are the culprits of my exhaustion. I haven’t tweaked my food or sleep in any meaningful way, and I should have. When you push more, you require more – more of everything.


My breakfast has been cereal, coffee and a bagel thin (those skinny bagels) since work has limited scrambled eggs to once a week. (Note: my work provides me free breakfast. It is where I make up a lot of my paycheck, usually in the eggy form.)

My view from breakfast

My lunch is the same every day, in a compulsive kind of way: Cucumber, tomato, cheese, mustard and arugula on two pieces of pretzel bread, and a Caesar salad.

My dinner varied, but mostly revolved around lettuce and Paul Newman’s delicious salad dressing.

I snack throughout the day, as our PA can tell you. I eat nuts, crackers, trail mix, fruit and the occassional piece of chocolate.


I sleep 5-6 hours a night, depending on the day. Sometimes 4 (if work is busy) and sometimes 7 if I miss my alarm.

Clearly I am no model of perfection-as-an-athlete. Maybe there isn't such a thing for us amateurs and age groupers. I'm not paid to compete. I do it for ... well, "fun" is not the right word. But I'm sure many of you know what the actually means.

But I also recognize that I’ve got work to do if I want to be a great athlete. So going into this upcoming week, it’s my goal to get some more protein into my diet. Drink more water. And when I return to CT for a 6-day vacation over labor day, sleep is a huge priority. As is spending time with my parents, of course.

Until the next lightning stroke of inspiration has me writing up a storm, may your workouts bring you happiness.

Final Thought:“Sometimes the most urgent thing you can possibly do is take a complete rest” - Ashleigh Brilliant

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