GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — One week of Grand Rapids Triathlon training is done! Laura and Shanna will take on the GR sprint triathlon in June and are sharing their thoughts along the way.
Laura starts with how the first week of training went:
"I was so excited to get into the training schedule. At this point in time, we have been doing triathlon segments for about six weeks and planning for this series started even earlier! I wanted to hit the ground running on training (literally and figuratively!).
"I've been going to the pool regularly for four weeks now and you could say my swimming is coming along swimmingly. While it takes time to drive to the pool, change, swim, change again, then head home, I'm starting to really enjoy time in the pool. It's usually quite and peaceful. A tip for beginner swimmers: ask those around you for feedback or advice. I almost always ask the lifeguard on duty about my technique.
"Running has gone well too. I love Kari's training plan methodology - running for time rather than distance. With a busy and every-changing schedule, I really appreciate this!
"I actually thought the biking would be the simplest discipline to train for, and boy was I wrong! Kari also schedules bike workouts in time rather than distance, but even 20 minutes on the bike trainer feels like forever! I've been saving the new season of Queer Eye for my bike days because I need to take all my focus away from the timer. In Kari's bike tips segment, she tells us to aim for 90 rpm. I'm so grateful (and slightly annoyed) at my husband for getting out his metronome and continuously correcting my pace while lying on the floor watching television. Love ya, babe!
"Looking at how much more training there is before race day is daunting but I feel so good. The training plan is manageable and not set in stone - work with it to make those workouts fit in your schedule! For now, enjoy the 'easy' workouts while I go find some triathlon shorts (that bike seat is FAR from comfy!)."
"Ah, first week of training in the books. I'll have to admit, I was intimidated by the 6-day-a-week-get-my-butt-into-shape-plan. But, it hasn't been bad -- starting is the hardest part. Now that I'm exercising more, I feel healthier in general, with more energy and motivation during the day (coffee can only do so much).
"Swimming is the biggest pain to schedule in your week (unless you have a pool at your house, and if you do I'm all-around jealous), but it's well worth it. It's the skill that takes time to develop, and each time I hit the local high school pool, I feel noticeable improvement. I definitely agree with Laura, swimming is surprisingly calming, and I enjoy it a lot more than I anticipated (knowing it was my weakest area). It doesn't hurt that the weather is beginning to warm up, too!
"For me, and probably for most, the running training has been the most straightforward. But I am excited to get off the treadmill and run outside as we start seeing those spring-like temps. I also realize the importance of having a good pair of running shoes... not only for "tri day," but for training all throughout. After a week of running with old tennies, it's time for me to hit the store and invest in a better pair (probably not from a consignment store this time around HA!)
"I grew up biking around my neighborhood with my brother chasing me... so it couldn't be that hard right? Well, considering my childhood was about the last time I've been on one, it hasn't been easy. Which, I'll admit was a bit of a surprise. For one, I am riding a type of bike I have never experienced before, which takes time to get used to (they don't make road bike seats comfy, do they?) And maintaining a decent pace is not easy for 30-45 minutes at a time. But I have faith once I start building some muscle and stamina, it will begin to get easier and easier.
"After this first week of training, I am definitely sore (caught my self stretching in commercial breaks during the morning show today), but I couldn't be happier about my decision to do the GR Tri. It's not only making me physically healthier, it's also improving my mindset in my day to day life."
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