It has now been a bit over 2 months since the last race of the season, and it seems like full on training has snuck up on me rather quickly. I have always said the best way to improve is to consistently hit workouts day in and day out. This will get you probably 80% of the way and the last 20% comes from doing the "right workouts at the right time." I must admit that since my crash I have been anything but consistent.
In the month after Barrelman I had one focus, getting my left leg back to being 100%. The week after the crash I was having some trouble standing for long periods of time and noticed a large lump on my quad. I decided I should head over to Dr. Lee, the sports med doctor at Waterloo Sports Medicine, because they never really did check my limbs at the hospital, they were more concerned about my head and internal organs. Dr. Lee said I probably tore a small part of the quad and that is what was causing the lump, essentially the lump was some of the muscle fibres that balled up when they tore. He recommended physio, massage, and that I could get back riding and swimming if they weren't causing any pain and then ease into running in a few weeks.
The bike seemed to come back the quickest, and I will admit I probably came back to quick. The two weeks back I put in 17 and 16.5 hours with about 12-14 hours of those being on the bike. Swimming was ok, but having limited range of motion in my leg made flip turns really difficult. Running took the longest to come back from and after some help from @physiodave (Dave Galloway) I was back running at about week 4. Everything sounds good and consistent right?
This is where I think I maybe jumped back into cycling to much. After just a handful of weeks of consistent training I managed to catch the cold that was going around. Ang got it early in the week and I tried doing everything to avoid it but sure enough by the end of the week I was done for. Just as I was starting to find my stroke in the pool and stride running I was out again for about 4 days.
Starting up training for the 2nd time was nearly as painful as after the crash. I always find swimming to be the most difficult to restart in. The stroke feels awful and my arms just spin in circles with no forward improvement. This is why I think it is important for all triathletes to try and get in the pool 3-4 times a week to keep a "feel" for the water so those first 10 minutes you can get straight to work instead of trying to find your feel. I'm sure jumping straight in with the UWaterloo varsity team in the middle of their first block of hard training didn't help, but I'm extremely grateful for the opportunity to swim with them. Last year I really struggled to maintain a high level of swimming on my own, but doing 2 hour workouts 4 times a week with them is awesome.
I thought round 2 was going to be the final start up, and I could start getting in the miles to hopefully kick off the season at Panama 70.3 in January. However, my mtbing skills had another plan. About 3k from my house I have this awesome trail system called the Hydrocut, it is about 25k of trails with features that I would rank as beginner up to high intermediate type riders. I had been looking at this one feature all summer wanting to try it, but knowing the risk reward during the season was to high. The feature is a boulder that is to high for me too bunny hop onto but low enough that you can pop your front wheel up then throw your body forward to get the back up. I drummed up the courage and went for it. I got on top but had no momentum and nose dived off the side of the rock. Throwing me over the bars and landing on my back. Knock on wood, I think I have bones made of metal because once again luckily nothing was broken, but my ribs were bruised. The impact of running and the stretching and flipping of swimming was a no go. Another week off!
I am now on round three of starting up my training for the off season. So far things have been going well. I've now put in 2 weeks at about 20 hours of training, and I only see things going up from here. Since this post is getting a bit lengthy I'll save some of the nitty gritty training details for next week.
While training has been ramping up so has my coaching with Healthy Results. At the start of November I started doing a Sunday morning brick at Come Alive Fitness. We have had consistent numbers that I only expect to grow in the new year. Ang and I helped out in Brantford with their tri group at the Gretzky Centre by doing some stroke corrections and video of the swimmers. My personal coaching has also grown, but you haven't missed out yet I still have a few spots for the 2016 season. If you are interested in getting some help planning your season contact me asap. The Healthy Results winter defrost camps in Vegas are also filling up fast so if you or a friend are interested contact myself or Rich.
Over the Christmas Holidays I hope to get my new website launched. It is 99% of the way there just putting some finishing touches on things so keep your eyes open for that. I also started a Facebook page dedicated to my triathlon adventures. I'm going to try and regularly post updates as well as some of the better and more interesting things I come across. So if you haven't checked that out yet check it out Here.
I hope everyones off-season is going a bit better than mine.