Ironman Wisconsin is looming and for the past few weeks I've been doing what I've termed "panic training". What's that you ask? When you are undertrained and/or your training has been non-existent to sub-par so you do a whole bunch of training in the last 2-3 weeks before taper.
As you may surmise, training hasn't gone that well. But looking back at my training from 2014, I seem to be on track for the same amount of training. And I finished fine that year so I am crossing my fingers this year goes okay for me too.
Like 2014, work got busy at the most inopportune times and I've had a lot of work to do the last 3 weeks which resulted in some late nights at the office and way too much stress that I do not handle well. The job pays for my Ironman-habit so work I must!
Two weeks ago was my last big week before taper (yay, taper!). To get some more time on the course, we decided to make a little vacay out of peak weekend and spend it in Madison with Brent and Kelly. I took a vacation day on Friday because I just needed a day to clean my house. Yes that is Ironman training for you. It also gave me some time to get some old errands done like our life insurance physical. #adulting The physical went pretty well and my husband didn't pass out while getting his blood sample taken.
After that we headed to Madison for an open water swim in Lake Monona. We were able to rent a kayak for Matt so he could join in the festivities. The water temperature was in the upper 70s so I skipped the wetsuit. I swam a total of 2.5 miles and felt really good. Definitely a confidence-boosting swim for me as I haven't done much open water swimming this year.
We capped off the night with dinner at the Klassick Tavern in Verona--highly recommended! And got to bed early so Saturday morning could get off to an early start for our bike ride. Our plan was to do 2 loops of the course and then tack on a few extra miles to get to 100. The ride went very well. We walked up the new Barlow hill and took it fairly easy on the first lap. We did encounter a little rain shower on our first loop but it didn't last long.
Our second lap was fueled by bread, peanut butter, and mini Oreos. Everything started out well but soon we were riding into a headwind. Matt was really struggling with a bonk and ended up turning around and heading back towards the hotel. Our group of 3 soldiered on through the second loop. I continued to feel strong and was able to spin up the hills. As we were headed towards the last big hill on the loop - Midtown - a guy rode past us the opposite direction waving and it took a few seconds for me to realize it was Matt! Once he got back to the hotel, he chugged a bunch of water and ate some food and felt better. So he rode the course in reverse until he found us.
Once we were back in Verona we hit up the gas station for more fluids and Snickers bars because #fueling Then we rode around Verona and the Epic campus to get to 100 miles! I bonked a little at the end but overall I felt great. Not sure that I wanted to get off and run a marathon quite yet but I'll get there on race day.
We capped off the night with Pizza Ranch buffet! Nothing like a buffet after a really look bike ride. And honestly, who can say no to Cactus Bread?
It was a pretty early night again so we could recover before our long run Sunday.
The weather was great on Sunday morning. A little bit overcast and nice and cool. We took off from the hotel and ran along the bike path in Verona. I am jealous of all the paths they have to offer in the Madison area. Lake County you need to step up your game even more! Plus they had bathrooms and water fountains. 8 miles to the turnaround and we were all feeling good. Of course my legs were tired and I wasn't moving very fast but I was running! We took maybe 3 walk breaks on the way back but never walked for more than about 1 minute before starting our run again. The end was a little bit of a struggle but we finished 16 miles in under 3 hours! Then we demolished some Holiday Inn breakfast!
After a quick shower we headed back to home base to pick up this pretty girl. She was a little stir-crazy from being at the kennel she we headed to a nearby forest preserve to get some energy out. It was probably good for me to stretch my legs as well!
Overall the weekend was definitely a success. I'm feeling more confident in my ability to finish this race!