Friday, May 16, 2014

Kona Project Update: "Another Two Steps Back"

Unbelievably, one day after I publish a post about feeling good and looking forward to racing Columbia, I wake-up feeling not so good.  I awoke at 4:10 am feeling fatigue and a little achy. I persevered and made my way to the gym for my morning 3500 yd swim.  Although, everything about me was moving more slowly.  I kept second guessing whether I should've have even gotten out of bed.  I did my 800 yd warm-up followed by 4x50 yd intervals.  My stroke felt good, and I thought about continuing.  But, I could feel my body telling me that if I did, I would pay for it later.  So, after 1000 yds, I got out of the pool and went home.

Laura asked why I was back so soon.  I told her I wasn't feeling well.  At this point, it was about 5:50 am and between then and 6:30 I had gotten considerably worse and called off work.  I scheduled a doctor's appointment and went back to sleep.

At the doctor's office, the nurse took my temperature, 101.2.  I expected that based on how I'd been feeling.  The doctor examined me and concluded I probably have pneumonia.  Yep, freakin' pneumonia.  How about that for two steps back!

So, no Columbia this weekend.  I'm already feeling significantly better today.  The fever is gone, but I have to get this taken care of if I want any shot at being my best at Eagleman on June 8.  I'm doing my best to stay positive.  My body has told me once again, that I need more rest.  I will make sure I get it this weekend and then go from there.  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Kona Project Update: "Two Steps forward; One Step Back"

I'm learning the hard way that preparing to qualify for Kona is a "two steps forward; one step back" process.  After a solid beginning to my training last fall, I was forced to pull-back during late December and early January due to some back pain that was most likely a result of increased training and lack of maintenance work such as stretching and strength training.  Again, following several months of solid training and improvement from February through early April, I was forced to pull-back again.  Scheduled recovery from a hard block of training as well as unscheduled recovery from sciatic pain in my right glute/leg, increased fatigue from being sick, and increased asthmatic symptoms forced me to post-pone the final hard training block that leads up to Eagleman.

On Saturday, April 19th, I completed 101.72 miles on the bike with an average normalized power of 252 watts followed by a 3-mile run, on which my legs felt surprisingly good.  Following that workout, I told Laura that I was feeling strong.  Despite having some mild sciatic pain in my right glute and some normal asthmatic coughing while exercising, I could feel the improvement and benefit of all the training. It was very exciting! In the days that followed I had some severe fatigue and wondered if I had come down with mono.  My normal asthmatic coughing increased greatly and left me almost unable to take a deep breath without coughing.  You can imagine trying to train under such symptoms.  Finally, the sciatic pain in my glute prevented me from bending over and touching my toes.  I knew I had to pull-back and get my body right.

Afer talking with Coach Chad about pulling back a little on the training, I scheduled appointments with my asthma doctor and Dr. Brad at DeNovo Pittsburgh Chiropractic.  The increased rest along with a change in asthma medication and Dr. Brad's miraculous Active Release Therapy have me back in full swing and ready for this weekend's Columbia Triathlon, which is now organized and run by the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.  This weekend's race will be a small but important step in my final preparations for Eagleman on June 8.  Look forward to my race report next week to see how I did.