I think I need to get a Master Female coach. After spending some time on the phone yesterday with one of Carmichael's coaches whom specializes in Women Master Athletes, Tracy Drews, I come to realize I'm just fooling myself and maybe, just maybe Ricky Brown is right -- I'm doing too much and not paying attention to my aging body. Tracy was incredibly helpful. After asking many, many lifestyle questions such as stress at work/home, family medical history, my training/nutrition patterns, sleep, etc. she started narrowing down potential sources of my fatique and how to combat them. The one point I found most interesting is lack of sleep and getting up at 3:30-4:00 am every morning. For aging women, 8-10 hours of sleep is recommended - and that's for a non-athletic woman. I sleep about 6.5-7 hours and sometimes that's not sound. Another interesting fact was the most recovery in sleep occurs between 3:00 and 5:00 am. Well I'm waking up in the middle of recovery! She mentioned something else I'm just kidding myself about all the time - my days off. I always thought my Mondays and Fridays off were "off." But just because I don't swim/bike/run on those "off" days, its really not off. You see, I fill my "off" days with kayaking with Ricky, gardening, maybe ez road riding with Ricky, or doing trail work cutting down trees. Well, that's not actually taking off. I'm still doing activities -- even though I think its not much, it is (yes, even active recovery can be harmful in this case) and its affecting my ability to recovery properly. I'm an idiot. Tracy also mentioned hormone levels and getting them checked. Obviously an imbalance in hormones can have many physical effects, thus, enhance the aging issues. So I have some work to do... can the budget afford a professional training plan? The benefit of it would be if I'm paying for it, I'll use it -- not to mention I might just being doing something right then!