Tag Archives: Challenged

“You signed up for what?”

Years ago the sport of triathlon was considered a bizarre, over the top, extreme form of fitness. Today, competing in a triathlon event is mainstream. Nevertheless it still remains a rather intimidating sport – especially for beginners, like myself. Each year, thousands of men and women – participate in their first triathlon. I believe anyone can participate in a triathlon, even if you haven’t worked out in years. Although complex and the learning curve is steep for first-timers, patience, determination and (proper) training, are key to a successful finish.

How do I get started, how do I train? … 

  • Begin with an amount of training that is appropriate to your present level of fitness.
  • Plan for 12 weeks to prepare for a sprint triathlon which consists of a half mile swim; a 12 mile bike and a 3.1 mile run
  • Keep the intensity at about a four-to-six, on a scale of 1-to-10 in all of your workouts.

MONTH 1

Monday –  Off
Tuesday –  RUN: 20 minutes
Wednesday –  BIKE: 30 minutes or indoor cycling class
Thursday –  Off
Friday –  RUN: 20 minutes
Saturday –  SWIM: 10 to 16 x 25 meters, rest 20 seconds
Sunday –  BIKE: 30 to 40 minutes or indoor cycling class

SWIM: During weeks 3 and 4, swim 8 to 10 x 50 meters, rest 15 seconds. BIKE/RUN: Increase by five minutes each week.

MONTH 2

Monday –  Off
Tuesday – RUN: 3 to 4 Two-minute intervals
Wednesday –  BIKE: 50 to 60 minutes or indoor cycling class
Thursday –  SWIM: 8 to 10 x 75 meters, rest 15 seconds
Friday –  RUN: 35 to 40 minutes
Saturday –  SWIM: 8 to 10 x 75 meters, rest 15 seconds
¹BRICK: BIKE: 30 minutes steady RUN: 20 to 30 minutes

SWIM: During weeks 3 and 4, swim 5 x 100 meters, rest 15 seconds. BIKE: Increase by five minutes each week. RUN: Begin interval training: Warm up for 15 minutes, then alternate two minutes at a faster pace with two minutes jog/walk. Cool down for 15 minutes; increase by one interval each week.

MONTH 3

Monday –  RUN: 6 to 8 two-minute intervals
Tuesday –  BIKE: 60 to 70 minutes
Wednesday –  SWIM: 800 meters
Thursday –  RUN: 40 minutes
Friday –  SWIM: 800 meters or 30 minutes in open water
¹BRICK: BIKE: 50 minutes steady RUN: 25 to 30 minutes

During weeks 2 and 3, do the brick on Tuesday; on Sunday, do a mini triathlon (15-minute swim, 45-minute bike, 20-minute run). Race week: Revert to month 1, week 1. The day before your race, rest or swim easy for 10 minutes.

¹Back-to-back bike-run training workouts (aka BRICKS) are essential—they’ll teach you to run on legs that feel like jelly after hopping off the bike.

The first mile always feels as if someone else’s legs have been grafted to your body, It’ll feel lousy—but since triathletes prepare themselves with brick workouts, they hit their stride pretty quickly.” – Women’s Health

Start in the second month of training, a bike-run brick every weekend. You’ll discover that it takes about 10 minutes for you to get past the running-through-mud feeling. Plus it will mentally prepare you for day of the race day. Most important is that you’ll know you can push through and finish strong.finish line1

One Day at a Time

I would have to say the most difficult part of my life’s journey has definitely been … “the waiting”

From any early age, of 16, the message was loud and clear – you are on your own!

Little did I know that God’s plan for my life would include a wonderful gift at 21, when he blessed me with this beautiful, loving man whom I would call my husband for 30 years.

… I learned what love was – unconditional love. Anytime I questioned who God was, all I had to do was look beside me.

I learned to embrace this life I had been given, and it was comforting to know that I did not have to “go it alone” anymore.

The years would bring three wonderful children into our lives and I was careful to thank God every day for the blessings in my life.

Life as I knew it, came to an abrupt end on a cold January evening in 2012.

… the message was loud and clear – “you are on your own” once again!

I have struggled to put the pieces of my life back together, from then until now. Admittedly, some days are better then others. I’ve definitely questioned God and without the benefit of being able to look beside me – there are definitely moments when I wonder where He is, in all of this.

I have been so blessed by those three little persons who graced my life and grew into adulthood. My youngest daughter, I call her “my Ruth” and my only son is the living legacy of his Dad. Not anchored by their grief, they are the very example of fortitude and grace. I still thank God every day for the blessing of their lives in mine. 

… perhaps they are God’s reminder of His Goodness and His Grace.

Setbacks are tough but I have to continue to remember that; “when I wait you strengthen my heart” – Psalm 27:14

I would love to count myself among the faithful.

Today however, I write with a weary heart.

I’ve heard it said more times then I care to count, that when plans fail – God is up to something a whole lot bigger!

For now, for today anyway – that will have to be enough …