ironman training update 2 - not going well at all

Sunday, April 10, 2011

IM dream gets further and further in the dream category :(

I push the cycling because I'm not good enough at it. I mean I probably won't make the bike cut-off in July. So I push it and keep getting injuries. Worse and worse injuries.
I had jumpers' knee end of last year and my left knee is hurting ever since.
I know the reason is my low cadences, so I'm working on increasing my average cadence.
I'm just a very weak cyclist, it's hard for me.
So cycling being my priority I have hardly run at all. After a long winter break took it up again
two weeks before my half, actually during most people's taper time...
I'm always doing this undertraining thing. Still managed a PB, but it has been a flat route (Brighton) and my previous PB was on a hilly course. Anyway I was quite surprised.
Then had a hard long ride on Monday and again on Wednesday followed by a run. 23rd of Feb.

I was not supposed to train on the Wed but my hubby came home very early and I went out.
After having my (curry) lunch. HUGE mistake but I havn't known it then.
Maybe it was because of my general tiredness, but I blame that lunch.
I was full, so I havn't eaten my usual gels/sport drinks just water.
And I probably couldn't digest the curry cramped on the bike, so I developed hypoglycaemia.
The thing is I was feeling OK, usually having a high during a long run, I even pushed it.
It happened very fast, only had a minute or so to react. I felt tingling in my hands and feet, then dizzy. I knew I wouldn't get home on my own. No mobile with me, bummer.
I usually go out with it. Only had time to knock on a door and tell my hubby's phone number
and I went down. I was very lucky I was running in urban area and that the man was at home
and remembered the number and dialled it. It must have been a complete schock for him as well as for my hubby. Later I thanked him.
I blacked out completely, pood and peed in, and had intestinal bleeding as well. Most scary.
When I gained back conciousness I was in a severe abdominal pain from ischaemia, low blood flow in the guts. It took several hours getting better and took me two weeks to recover. I couldn't eat well in the week after and was very shaky and even two weeks later I was afraid of running. Or cycling.

I started cycling indoor but had a prescheduled longer ride. Was scared still did it.
It was very hilly, 10+ big hills, 15-20%, some of them quite long.
I got tired, my cadence dropped and on the last hill I felt and heard a click in my bad knee.
It was the medial collateral ligament. Partially torn.
Next day it looked terrible, swollen and bruised and painful.

Two weeks complete rest. Slight improvement. I couldn't swim with it just with a pull buoy -
my legs were floating after me. I still swim that way. Whenever i try to kick my knee flares up.
So I don't. But I'm competitive and a relative good swimmer so I wanted to keep up with the guys in the lane. I did. After a couple of weeks of "pulling sessions" I hurt both shoulders.

Last week I had my longest ride ever. 85miles.
IM is 112 miles-180 km. A lot longer. And a lot lot hillier.
And I'll need to go faster to make it. Is it still possible? I'm not sure.
Could stick with moderately higher cadences in the first part. Around 100km I got tired.
Cadence dropped. Speed dropped. A lot. At least it wasn't hilly this time.
Average speed was 20.6 km/h netto but with the stops (loo, feed and traffic as well)
my overall speed was as low as 19.2 km/h. Very very slow, even for me.
I managed to came in last. I saw the delight in the eyes of those who passed me in the later stages. They must have all thought they had been the last till they passed me.
At least my knee wasn't acting up. I was sure it would
from a ride this long but the lack of hills and the higher cadence done the trick.
I'll try to stick with it from now on.

I the meantime I developed a bone growth on my ankle. It started end of last year.
Was painless at first. But grew bigger and bigger. It's huge now, as a walnut, sticks out a lot.
My shoe's getting ill fitting because of it. I think I'll have to show it to a doc soon.

So lots of injuries. And I had entered a marathon last year.
I've had only four runs in since the half in February - during 8 weeks!!!! Because of the injuries.
Although one of those had been a 20 miler (32k) it's still not enough training for a marathon.
Even I wasn't sure, and I'm completely mad, you know this by now.
Thought I would do only 20miles again and stop. Because injuries are more common when you're tired (as in the last 6miles of a marathon).
It was a huge race (Brighton Marathon). Huge crowds. There was no way I could quit.

Last year I've run my first ever. After very little training, only 9 weeks after a half I've done but I enjoyed that half a lot and decided to run a full that evening. Couldn't find a later marathon. So I've done it and it was a success. Enjoyed every minute of it.
I was a bit undertrained even then although I did a 16 and two 20milers in that 6 week period. And I had two more short runs weekly, too. And then I had a 3 week taper in.
All in all better prepared than this year.
It was a small race, 500- runners. I wasn't prepared for a big city marathon's huge crowd- it propels you forward.

My knee acted up at mile 2!!! Was in pain till mile 14. I really almost quit.
But then the pain has gone. I did it. Even enjoyed it.
No PB this time but quite close. 4.48. Even had two loo brakes in, what a shame I had to.
I shouldn't have drunk in the last hour before the race at all, I have a small bladder.
Next time I'll only drink after 5-6 miles in a race - note to self.
But it has been a hot day today. I did what I thought was best. I drank. Got overhydrated.
Still 10.56 min/m according to my Garmin.
I couldn't pick up the pace the last 4-5 miles as planned, was tired.
In running you can't do better than you've trained for.
Even this was quite good for the training I've put in.
All that cycling must have somehow still helped my running.
Not with the injuries but as cross training.
I still think I could have run a PB this year without the cycling.
Next year I'll concentrate on swimming and running. I'm no cyclist.

I'm at home now icing my knee like crazy after an ice bath.

And watching Ironman South Africa on :)
Oh, the cut off time is an hour longer than in Switzerland.
I'd need that extra hour. At the moment 16hours + are coming in and
they are in much better shape than me, mostly sporty looking young male athletes...
And Switzerland's course is much much hillier.
No undulations, plain big hills.
I'm bad both on hills and downhills :(
What was I thinking entering that???

Tomorrow I'll know if it was very stupid crazy or just simply crazy
to run a marathon on a bad knee.
No more long runs for sure till autumn.
Well, apart from the half ironman in May and the IM CH in July
-if I get to run it at all.

Hubby took these today. Sorry, couldn't turn them.
You see, still overweight
yet looking better than ever, I mean in the last 10 years, after the kids.

Did I mention my absolute non-exceciser hubby took up running.
I'm so very happy about this.
He never ever did any sports apart from PE at school...
His resting HR was over 100 bpm. Most unhealthy.
Now it's 60. Will get even lower for sure.
He started weight lifting and lost weight fast, then took up running as well.
Did his first half three weeks ago. 1.54. (my PB is 2.12.......)
He already plans to PB it because he really didn't push himself.
He didn't see the point in it at the time, just wanted to finish, only once.
Now he wants to get faster. He-he.
And he already entered a marathon. On the 2nd of October. emoticon
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I'm so sorry you've had so much trouble!!!!!!
    Good job sticking with it and not giving up on your goals.
    I hope you are healed by now!

    3669 days ago
    WOW - so sorry about all the injuries! I cannot imagine even attempting to train for an IM - so I commend you just for trying! So cool about getting your husband into fitness! It's great that you can share your passion with him! Oh and 4:48 is an excellent marathon time - especially if you were in pain at mile 2! Huge congrats for pushing on! And I think you look "fit" in your pics! =)
    3759 days ago
    Frustration city, injuries are a pain!!! I feel your pain this year running is not my friend. Hang in there, good to hear hubby got on board with running.
    3759 days ago
    Katie well done on your PB!!!! And considering you hardly trained.
    How you feeling today???? Stiff and sore?

    I don't know what you must do (should do) with your injuries.
    Knee does not sound good, as well as growth on ankle.

    Cycling should be safe for knees - you shouldn't be feeling any pain. Are you sure your bike set up is correct? Maybe that should be looked at. Take it to a good bike shop and ask them to check the fit etc. This is really important - it must be right for your body. Some measurement may be off slightly ie your saddle too high/low or too far back/forward on the rails and getting it correct could make all the difference.

    Also as you know pushing big gears not good too. High cadence definitely way to go. That's what I try on my bike on trainer - keep cadence at least over 90 RPM - and even better over 100. Spinning is really excellent.

    Ironman SA - I didn't even watch it - very bad of me!!!! I watched a bit of the Paris - Roubaix instead.

    I think you must can the Swiss Ironman, and come to SA next year to do the SA Ironman instead! I can be your assistant!

    You are looking great!!! Nice and firm and muscular legs! Well done Katie!
    And on inspiring your husband to run - that's fantastic!
    So maybe you can go running with him in Hungary?

    3759 days ago
    Often the biggest mistake one can make is over-training and not listening to your body. If you are asking the body to do great feats and not giving it time to heal, you will keep hurting yourself.
    If cycling is bothering you knee, I would suggest changing to shorter pedal arms and possibly a different crank as well. My mechanic changed my road bike with a mt. bike crank and pedals and it is alot easier for me to keep a higher cadence while riding. Much easier on the legs and just as fast! Good luck, keep trying, and don't be scared to give yourself a little time to heal.
    3760 days ago
    What can you do but try? And even if you don't qualify, or don't finish, you tried and that's better than most. Keep your chin up and don't give up!!!
    3760 days ago
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