The base goal for January served to ease my body back into the habits of scheduled training. At the end of last year I reduced my workout efforts, continuing to train but without a scheduled dependency. With the new year comes a new focus. Unlike last year, where I worked to evenly improve in all three aspects of triathlon evenly, my primary goal for 2014 is to improve on the run. With that focus I established a run heavy training program with limited focused workouts in the swim and bike. Unlike previous month review I think I am going to break this down by its current components.
As the run is my primary goal for the year I wanted to get things going on the right foot. In December 2013 I had ran the most miles ever for a month at 37 miles. This month I wanted to aim for 20-30 miles a week, roughly 80 miles a month. For January I figured I would ease myself into the mileage and I set my goal for around 60 miles. I blew this estimate out of the water with a total of 90 miles of total running (this includes the first weekend of February as my workout weeks start with Monday). Better yet, I put in a good mix of quality run workouts, mixing in two speed workouts and one long workout each week. In January I also added trail running into my mix of training and even finished off my first trail race. I dropped the 15k as it did not fit into my budget or workout plans.
Looking at the numbers I think I way overestimated my weekly workouts. As running is the primary focus I am shooting for two swim sessions a week. When I set January’s goals I think I figured I would find a way to get three swims in a week, which I ended up with two on average. The swim workouts I did complete were good quality swim workouts that I feel will get me ready for race day.
Due to weather and limited budget my bike is still in storage. So I have been focusing time on good quality spin workouts, with at least one long session a week. Unlike last year I am calculating mileage for spin based off of my 13 mile per hour pace for last year. In some spin classes I calculate higher based on perceived effort of the class.
Besides the base three triathlon focused disciplines, two additional goals for January focused on renewed efforts in Pilates and strength training. Unlike previous efforts I began to focus on heavy lifting with a reduction in set number. I managed to consistently attend pilates, but the biggest surprise for January came in the form of strength training. Last year I did very little strength training and my bench press max hovered around 120 pounds. This month I was able to push my bench press over 200 pounds and my leg presses are now over 810 pounds.
February is going to be a bit difficult as I tend to shut down due to the Olympics. Besides the Olympics I also have now added a trail half marathon a week after my road half marathon. I know this will effect my swimming and spin numbers as I will have to plan my taper and recovery very carefully between each race. Otherwise my goals are pretty similar to last month. While I missed my swim volume last month, I am keeping the number a bit high as this months workouts up the weekly volume from a low 1500-2000 to 2400-3000 per workout.
January was a good month with my personal all time best running mileage. While I still do not see much improvement in my run I know I am putting in the work, getting the workouts completed and building a consistency in monthly and weekly volume. If I can maintain this volume of work I should be ready for better performance in my triathlons this year as well as my major races. Til next time.