Oh where to start? I guess we’ll start with the fear I had pre workout. I pushed myself at the track yesterday. Smart? Not so much, not when I knew I had tempo/speed work planned for today. My abducters/adducters (not sure which one I’m talking about, I’m referring to the quad muscle the runs close to the inner thigh along the quad) were burning from yesterday. Pretty sure that was from my squats during strength training. I was also experiencing mild DOMS on my chest on arms, thinking that was from the weight assisted dips and stabilization work. My energy was high but my muscles didn’t feel at the top of their game and from my convo’s with Coach Mark I’m usually held back from achieving my needed speed work from muscle failure. Plus emotionally I wasn’t feeling so hot since the night prior I allowed the track to defeat me. Mental defeat is not something that I allow or deal with well.
I walk into the gym, take a big breath of air and swallow my fear. I will NOT allow it to me conquered again. I am strong on the bike and I will prevail. Lol, this is actually what I told myself. A little silly? Yea? I think so. Anyway, it works for me, so I’ll roll on with my silly ass. Another reason I thought this was going to be challenging was I that now know my target HR zones for the work that needed to be done. They were a lot higher then what I was accustomed to doing on the bike. The plan was to do a 60 min spin in a moderate zone (HR 160-183) with 4 x 2 min tempos (HR 183-189) thrown in. 183-189 is what scared me. I knew I could hold 165-175 for 60 mins without too much work. The high end aerobic was what was going to hand me my tail. Coach Mark also said that it might take me a while to work up to these zones since I was used to training on over trained muscles, meaning that it would take a few weeks of light workouts for my muscles to repair and for me to be able to sustain the muscular work to push my HR that high. The last week and a half have been a lot lighter to what I am used to and I think tonight the results showed.
I started my spin 20 mins before class started. It took about 4-5 mins for my HR to reach 160. Once it did I did not allow it drop below 160 for another 60 mins. I spun in and out of the saddle with a decent cadence and resistance between 163-170 for the first 15 mins. It took my legs a while to get used to the work, but I managed. 15 mins in I started my first tempo, 2 mins at 184. I watched the clock and I pushed and pushed and pushed. My HR climbed and stayed around 183-185. I made the first 2 mins. Woot! Woot! For Kat, the fear was no longer there. I was breathless at the end but surprisingly enough my recovery was short, I felt good 60 seconds later. For the next 12 mins my HR stayed around 168-173. It was no longer a challenge to keep my HR up. My legs felt light and spins came easier. I think anything feels easier when your heart doesn’t feel like it’s going to explode through your chest. Tempo #2 coming up fast and furious. I hit it again. 183-185. I felt this one a bit more. My lunges started to burn earlier on. But still I stuck it out. Another 12-14 mins at 168-175. Tempo #3 , Oh yea, I’m feeling it now. My quads are starting to sting a bit and my lungs are ignited. Reached and held 188 this time around, Booyah! Thank God for recovery. This time I think it took a good 90 secs to get my breathing and legs under control. One tempo left, that was it. Tempo # 4, again I maintained 185-188 for 2 mins. I felt like a well tuned engine. My legs were pumping up and down like high compression pistons, the air was rushing in through my intake manifold (mouth and throat), swirling around in the combustion chamber (lungs) and igniting in my heart. Fireworks where going off all over my body. I’m guessing this is the endorphin high they speak of when doing speed work. I finished my tempo feeling like I crossed that next challenge. I walked in scared and stared my fear down as if it was a pathetic dog with its tail between its legs. And you know what the best part was? I could have gone for more. I wasn’t done. The workout didn’t work me, I worked it. Tonight I smile and know that one day I will have this feeling at the track….I look forward to it.