Today, I swam pain free and was able to up the pace to tempo/zone 3 and flip turns were OK, although I’m taking that first pull with the other arm now.  I concentrated and stay focused on my form: high elbow, following all the way through to finish that stroke and turning those hips.  I have a tendency to swim like there is a surfboard under me.  Muscle memory is a powerful thing and I grew up surfing with my dad.  He was one of the first to bring the trend of surfing into the state of Maine.  Now, its grown very popular up that way, but back in the 80’s often times there were barely any surfers on the beach, even when the surf was up.  I digress, I have joked that I need to channel my inner “Shakira” and really use my hips.  I know swimming is a full body effort.  Perhaps this little flare up was a nice reminder to stay true to the form and swim with my core as well as my arms.  I’m happy it was only a minor annoyance and not a full fledged injury.


There is a disc wheel cover on my Zipp right now from wheelbuilder.com.  This is allegedly just as aero and fast as a true disc wheel and much less expensive.  Pretty much everyone I go to around here for bike advice concur including Dane & Kyle of Endorphin Fitness and Dave Luscan of DL Multisports, so I’m going with it.  I bought a used wheel cover off local pro cyclist Dan King.  

Upon selling it, he says “Now you can Win”  I love that mentality, and it sure will inspire me to push really hard, but this is a ironman branded, competitive 70.3 so I’m gunning for a PR (sub 5:25:50) or faster.. Hopefully much faster.  : ) 
I should note that Firecrest Zipps have been giving me a headache since I bought them with brake rub issues.  The integrated Felt DA4 brake does not have a lot of clearance and it may not be enough with the Firecrests being the widest wheel on the market.  I’ve had issues since I bought the Zipps.  I do think that riding with the brake all the way open has left enough room that it will stop rubbing and there’s still plenty of braking power. 

 If I had to do it all over, I would have gone with a wheelset that has thinner width due to the DA brake and maybe even an aluminum braking surface so that I don’t have to change the brake pads each time I switch wheels.  I wind up training on the race wheels 100% of the time out of lack of time to change out the pads etc and fear that adjusting the brake to fit the training wheels will mean brake rub issues on race day.  Just a thought in case anyone is contemplating race wheels.  Most (myself included) do not have the funds to run carbon fiber training and carbon racing wheels.  I also didn’t know the brake pads would need to be changed each time.   Having the same rim width from training to racing wheels also could help as that means you don’t need professional bike shop help on the brake adjustment just to change the wheel.  Hopefully, it will work out at FL with no rubbing.  I’ll take her outside this weekend to test her out.  I’ll be looking all silly going easy with a disc.  


I’ve taken to the track now.  Michael, my coach introduced intensity and hill work last block and now we are moving to the track.  Last week, I saw his goals for me written in my plan and I was floored.  It looked too fast.  I texted him right before the workout and asked if there was a typo.  I figured if he did not write back in time, I’d just add 30 (yes 3-0) seconds to the goal time, assuming it was a mistake.  I was actually a bit aggravated that he’d put some insane paces in there as it looked unrealistic.  I wondered if he gave me someone else’s workout.  Yet, he wrote back immediately with a text that was all upbeat and positive.  He said it wasn’t a typo and referenced prior training runs that indicated the pace was correct.   “Believe,”he said.  Well, I was skeptical, but I wasn’t too far off his pace at all.  It was really exciting.  Yesterday, one week later when I saw the times for the track sesh, I decided to tackle them with confidence and give it my all.  I came in just under his goals for me on each one.  After breaking my foot last year 2 weeks before the half iron and doing all kinds of aerobic work to build back, it felt incredible to be flying and even more exciting to see the times.  All the consistency and PATIENCE of rehabbing the injury(ies?!) and building back strong has paid off.  When we added some intensity back in March, I admit, I panicked.  Now, Im really happy to see how it is all unfolding.  I feel so grateful.  I did get a little teary eyed during my cool down thinking of how far I have come and how lucky I am to have the health to make this kind of progress.