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Let’s start at the very beginning February 17, 2010

Posted by bettyjoan in Cycling, Mentoring, Running, Swimming.
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We now have two team swims and two Saturday group training sessions (GTS) under our belts – and this weekend was our first weekend “off” (which means that we didn’t work out as a team, but we were still expected to follow the training calendar and get our miles in).  Honestly, the off weekends stress me out, since I tend to do much better when I’m expected to be somewhere.  It’s just too easy to skip a workout when no one is going to mercilessly mock you for it.

Our first GTS was with all of the summer teams (marathon/half marathon, adventure race, cycling, etc).  We met as a huge TNT group, and then we split off to talk about triathlon more specifically and to go around and do introductions.  It was a lot of fun, and we seem to have some really interesting and FUNNY characters on this year’s team.  After we got to know each other, we headed into the cold and rain to run three miles.  Shockingly, I felt great, despite the weather – probably because I remembered that last year, at the very same GTS, I couldn’t complete the workout.  What a difference a year makes!

The first swim, as expected, was interesting.  I mean, it’s an intimidating set-up – it’s cold, it’s loud, it’s everyone’s first time in a bathing suit in a while, you get the drift.  My mentorees were all very nervous, and about half of them made it seem like they were going to sink to the bottom and drown within the first five minutes, but they all did great.  They listened to the feedback from the coaches and worked hard during the whole hour-long practice, which was really awesome to see.  I’m such a proud mama!

The following Saturday, we headed out to Marietta for a shoe clinic and our first “brick” (a bike ride immediately followed by a run).  As usual, the Big Peach presentation was interesting and informative, and I had to stop myself from buying new gear on the spot (it helped that I just recently got a new pair of running shoes from Peachy himself).  As for the workout, it was sparsely attended due to some cold, windy, rainy weather conditions, but I ended up doing 10 miles on the bike and 2 miles running.  Although the course (Columns Drive) was flat, the heavy wind made it feel like a hill workout!  Luckily, after some initial derailleur issues, my bike and I interacted harmoniously and had ourselves a good ol’ time.  AND, because my running is much improved over last season, I was actually able to run and chat with some teammates – bonus!

At swim number two, the participants were placed in their assigned lanes for the first time.  As a mentor, I won’t really be assigned to a lane – for the first few weeks, I’ll be placed where there is a need for assistance, and then after that I’ll just swim wherever I’m comfortable and where I can get the best workout.  I swam in lane three this time, which allowed me to meet a couple of new folks.  We were moving into the more complicated drills, so I hope I was able to demonstrate proper form and at least be moderately helpful.  I couldn’t help but notice – after doing so much actual SWIMMING last season, it was weird to get back to doing drills.  BUT, on that same token, it was a lot easier to see and feel how the drills allow you to develop proper form.

I did okay over the weekend in terms of working out, especially considering how cold and nasty it was, but I will be grateful when I can get back to a team workout (this week I’ll be skipping out on the bike skills clinic to go to Athens).  I’ll also be grateful when Mother Nature warms things up a bit – BRRRRRRR!

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