Friday, December 28, 2007

Getting Serious - Xterra Training

It's time. The holiday food is just about gone and the Christmas rush is over. The time has come to get serious about the upcoming season. Ricky's contemplating his "focus" for next year with the kayaks -- a perfect combat roll. And my focus continues (gee, it didn't change from last week -- what a switch!) to be multi sport. In fact, Xterra is SO on my mind these days all I think of is improving my two weak sports - running and swimming. Not that my bike is exactly strong, but it certainly is better than the run and swim. The running isn't as much of problem as the swim. Swimming is SO technical and precise and when in the water, you have to continually think of all the positions and exact movements to be in to get the smoothest, most efficient stroke each time. Its an art. I discovered last week a bad habit I hadn't realized I had, and is likely the cause of my slowness... I was lifting my head to breath. Rather than simply rolling and breathing in my armpit, I was rolling and lifting; thus, slowing up the stroke with shoulder/neck drag. Bad news. So I have 4 days off for the New Year, and 3 of them will be spent in the pool coupled with a bike and/or run. The pool is my focus right now with perfect swim form. Training will be 5-6 days a week in the aerobic zone. Tuesdays and Thursdays are gym nights -- treadmill for 30-40 minutes, bike for 15 minutes, then weights. Monday is ez spin or off depending how I feel, Wednesday is 2 hr spin on trainer, Friday will be off, and Saturday/Sundays will be 3 hr sessions each day of swims, and long run with an ez ride, and a long ride with an ez run. Multi-sport training should nearly always be two sports in one session. It not only builds the endurance, but trains your muscles to be ready to go from swim to bike to run. Its truly a full-body workout. Weights will be limited this winter 'cause I want to spend my time in the three sports. Leg weights will be non-existent -- all leg training will be on the trainer pushing big gears. I pulled my training schedule and log from 2005 when I won the Xterra Regional Championship - my hopes are to recreate that year and win the championship again. So my "peak" will be June 15. Its really nice to know I can train hard this year and actually stand a chance at getting on the podium! I LIKE age group racing!

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