Fremont is my new hood.

Fremont is my new hood.

I wanted to write a blog about my lead up to Ironman Arizona. Honestly, we never were building up for Arizona. My coach Nick and I decided to supplement Ironman training with Half Ironman training which we believe I still haven't gotten to my full potential. Or maybe I have if you're a hater.

In this build, we used 1 Olympic distance race (SF Alcatraz), 2 70.3 races (IM Santa Cruz 70.3, and IM Austin 70.3). So basically, we had 4 week block build toward SC 70.3, then another 4 week build toward Austin 70.3, and a maybe a 5-10 day block + taper leading into IM Arizona 3 weeks between Austin 70.3 and Arizona.

As I've decided to start my career in engineering, I had to make sure I can still excel, improve and most importantly stay healthy working 40-50 hours a week while training 18-22 hours a week. After 3 weeks of working pretty fast faced, and stressful environment, I can say that I've achieved the goal. What happens down the road with work load at work is yet to be determined, but I've held it together pretty well.

Here's a weekly schedule of what I do to fit everything in

5:45 am, 1:10 master swim, 3500-4000 yards
7:10 am, 1:05 easy aerobic ride
9-6 (more like 7) work

5:30am, 2:00 trainer bike ride, with about 20-30 min of z4 intervals, 20-30 min z3 effort
7:30am, 20-30min brick run, 5-10min at race pace effort
9-6 (more like 7) work

5:30am, 1:40-2:20 run, 20 miles with intervals, 15-20min at marathon or threshold
9-6 (more like 7) work
8:30pm, 15min tubing, swim strength training

7:00am, 1:30 swim, 5000-6000 yards of endurance swimming
9-6 (more like 7) work
6:30pm, 1:00-1:30 of easy aerobic riding

7:00 am, 1:05 swim, 3500-4000 yards
12pm, 30-45 min easy running
9-6 (more like 7) work

9am (I should probably start earlier), 4-5:30 bike ride, 75-122 miles, with lots of intervals usually 30-45 min z4, and 1-2 hour z3

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Whenever I'm off the bike....20-50min brick run, with efforts in there

7am, 1-1:15 swim, 3000-4000 yards
9:30am, 1:10-1:20 run, speed threshold interval day, 10-12 miles
Whenever, either rest, or 30-60min of easy spinning to flush out the legs

Weekly training time, 17-23 hours excluding taper weeks
Weekly swim mileage, 12000-16000 yards (3-5.5 hours)
Weekly bike mileage,  130-220 miles (8-12 hours)
Weekly run mileage, 20-46 miles  (3-5 hours)

The biggest thing I've changed is taking my easy work outs easier than easy. Which means my heart rate doesn't go above 130-135 for easy runs (where before I'd hit my limit 144 for z2). My heart rate doesn't go above 110 for easy ride (less than 140 watts, sometimes less than 100 watts, for reference I push about 275-290 watts during a half ironman race, and I weigh about 147 pounds(67kg) when I'm fit). 

The other thing I've changed is, making sure I hit my hard days hard. Meaning my main sets of key work outs, I do them 100% as prescribed. With a full time job i sometimes have to cut things short, but at least I make sure to hit the heart rate instead of trying to "get in the work" without actually hitting those heart rate targets and underperforming. 

The result is pretty telling, as in SC 70.3, I basically matched all my best performances across 3 disciplines. Swam 2nd pack, rode okay, and ran basically 1:21, pretty Yu Hsiao peak fitness run speed. With only 3-4 weeks of minimal training. I've stuck by that, and trusted my coach, trusted my training. Before I'd let my insecurities get to me and I'd do extra, and be chronically overtrained. Which is why I think I've been underperforming in races. Or not, if you're a hater.

As for the job, I think it brought balance and stability to my life. It's no secret that I've struggled to find confidence and self esteem racing against the best guys in the world. I improve by a lot but still come home feeling pretty defeated every time. It's hard to feel happy when your whole life is focused on triathlon and it's a struggle. With a job, kinda takes my mind off of triathlon and I actually enjoy my time training. And it's about time that I put my knowledge to good use. Most of all, having some money takes the stress off.

Not that I don't like tutoring, but ....that's for another blog post. 

So Austin 70.3 next week will be interesting. Hopefully the work will pay off, no flats, stay on my bike, and run my ass off.

Wish me luck.

Until then, traffic sucks. And amen to expressos and lungos.


your local struggling pro, Yu signing off.