I feel like mother nature decided to take part in April Fools by pretending that spring was right around the corner only to say no thank you I’m gonna stay cold, windy, and slightly grey. This made for some interesting training adventures and with March clocking in as huge training volume we had to get creative and willing to head out at the last minute.
March started out with the second half of our trip to Arizona, a trip that the husband and I booked in January one cold and dark evening where we were craving some sunshine. This trip was immediately followed up by a quick jaunt to Denver, Colorado to visit my sister and her boyfriend prior to them jetting off to Thailand. Check out my sister’s blog The Lo Down to see more about their adventure across the pond. In typical Lloyd family fashion we all signed up for a 10k on Saturday for a little bit of fun. Let me tell you elevation is no joke and it hit me as I rounded the turn for the second 5k loop, these legs just would not go any faster.
10k PR = 40 mins 15 seconds
I would also like to note that the weekend was secured with a lively competition, by lively I mean serious as everything in my family is a competition ;), of corn hole in which I surprised everyone with my skill at.
The adventure continued when two weeks ago I was staring at the business end of a 100 miler with an 8 mile run off the bike and a weather app that was calling for a snow day, two items that do not mix well. Rather than face it on the trainer, which did not sound fun to me but I would have gotten it done, the husband suggested we head down to Walla Walla, Washington where a mere 3 hours south of Spokane it wasn’t supposed to be snowing. I would be able to ride in the sunshine and the husband could golf. So that is what we did, Brandon called my parents who were up for an adventure as well and drove out to meet Brandon in Walla Walla to all golf together.
We got up fairly early, low and behold we woke up to a couple of inches of snow on the ground, so that we could be on the road by 7:30 am. It was pretty amazing as we headed south there was a serious break of snow covered skies to blue sky; one second we were blanketed with snow and one second the skies parted and the sun came out. As we pulled away from the house that morning I was taken back to the times my dad and I would hop in the car and head out on our trips to chase the snow, this time though we were chasing sun, golfing, and some time spent on two weeks.
Brandon dropped me off in Touchet at a gas station that was on the corner of North Touchet Road and Highway 12 so that I could get started and finish in time to meet everyone for dinner.
While not particularly warm up it was still nice to see the sunshine for a change and I was beyond grateful to be biking outside rather than stuck in the trainer. I love biking in Walla Walla through wine country and farm fields, and despite the unbelievably strong head winds it was a super fun day to be biking.
Bike: 97.5 miles 5 hrs 19 mins
Run: 8.69 miles 1 hr 6 mins
After my ride and run I met up with my mom, dad, and husband who had finished golfing for some dinner in Walla Walla. While I did not get to spend the day with them it was really fun to meet up with them for dinner, they also had a 3 hour drive from Hood River to Walla Walla. Was it necessary for us to head down to Walla Walla just to golf and bike? Probably not, but was it a spur of the moment adventure that brought the family together and that made it totally worth it!
Walla Walla wasn’t the last adventure of March, I finished it out with a 116 mile bike ride through the wheat fields of Spokane. If you follow me long enough you’ll find that is where I spend most of my time and its the best place for riding.
My ride took me from North Spokane out to Sprague, WA and back. Again it was as though mother nature wanted to throw a bit of a loop into things with cooler temps than anticipated, the temp dropped about 5-10 degrees when I got out into the wheat fields, and just strong enough of a head wind (a bikers worst nightmare) to really make you hate life a bit.
116 miles is a long time to spend on two wheels by yourself and I had to do it self supported, for the most part. Brandon met me out at hour four with a refuel of water and infinite as well as a few other items just in case I was having a tough day.
Here is what I consumed on this ride:
3 full bottles of my custom blend of Infinite Nutrition
4 bottles of water
3 Organic Energy Squeezes from Cliff bar
Here is what I also brought/had Brandon bring as back up just in case:
2 Almond Butter Filled cliff bars
1 coca cola
1 extra random power bar we had at the house
A pair of gloves – which I gratefully took because my hands were so cold they were swollen.
While it was not my best ride metrically, I could not maintain the watts or the speed, it was a good ride from a mental standpoint and endurance quality standpoint. During the last two 100 milers I was feeling pretty trashed right at about 80 miles and it took a lot of talking to myself to get through the next 10-20 miles, however this weekend I did not hit that point until about 106 miles. I have definitely gained a lot of strength and endurance on the bike, now lets just hope that translates to speed four weeks from now.
Having officially entered into four (4) weeks out from Ironman Texas this week launches the last BIG week of training before we begin bringing it down and then tapering. I woke up this morning ready to tackle it and excited to bring it home. These last five months of training have been pretty spectacular and I love how my body has responded to the big load we put on it this time around. I am ready to race and ready to get the season officially started.
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