Sunday, January 07, 2007

Day 6- Is the Cleanse Good for Your Workouts ?

I went into the weekend thinking that the long bike ride Saturday would be the harder of the two workouts because of its length. I was still thinking that until about five minutes after I started running today.

Having said that, yes, I think that one of the the things the cleanse is good for, at least for me, is my workouts. Don't get me wrong, I don't think this is a performance nutrition plan. I won't be doing a two-week cleanse ending the day of an Ironman, although a short mini-cleanse within a few weeks of a big race might not be a bad idea...

There's a reason the cleanse comes in January. Well, there are several reasons, and that's for EH to say, not me. But I know for me, I'm in a re-building period. I've taken my two weeks off, I've started up my workouts again and I'm certainly behind the curve a little bit relative to where I was and where I want to be.

Which is OK, and which is the point as well.

I have some good training habits and some bad training habits. One of the bad habits I've developed on the bike is knowing what speed I can ride at what heart rate on a good day. My heart rate on the bike tends to be lower and I can push harder for longer and stay in a particular zone. The problem is that every day is not a good day, or at least the same day, and getting fixated on speed is counter-productive. Nevertheless, there are days I come back from a ride and look at the computer and-

Yesterday was not going to be one of those days. That's not to say that I was planning to dog the ride and use the cleanse as an excuse. But it was my first outdoor ride in about two weeks, I was supposed to be doing a steady ride in B, and that's what I went out and did. There was no stress about the fact that I was riding the route a good two miles an hour slower than normal.

I went out today with lowered expectations. My legs were a little tired, it was kind of a late start. But again, I didn't stress about it. I just did my run. I use out and back loops when I am training for an Ironman. There's no question you're going to be doing at a multi-loop course at an ironman, and I find the out and back's comparative monotony to a single loop actually helps prepare for that repetition. I can't say the run felt good- and there are days that they do. I anticipated falling far short of how far I ran last time I did the run, which was about 10 days ago.

I didn't run as far today as I'd run last week, but I did run far enough that I could see where I'd run to last time- a few hundred yards difference over 45 minutes. And while I didn't push as hard as I'd had last time on the way back, I still managed a decent negative split of over a minute.

I was tired when I got done, no doubt. I didn't feel all that great. But I'd had a good solid run, close to what I'd done last time. If the cleanse had done anything, it had just been to control me a little bit, and keep me in the workout. As EH says, we are not starving, after all. There's no reason for our workouts to fall off the cliff.

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