One of the great things about training for an Ironman is that you never need to spend any time wondering what type of exercise you want to do on a given day. The plan tells you what you're doing. And for how long. And how hard.
This can, of course, also be a huge draw back, if you just don't feellike doing what's on the plan for that day. Or doing it as long as it wants you to do it. Or as hard as it says to do it.
The 30-week plan that I'm following, and followed for IMWI 2009, as well, is pretty straight forward. And, yes, I have the schedule printed out as a graph so it's easy to see what the week holds (I'm not naturally a graph person, unlike many/most IM participants, but the graph was given to me by a friend that followed the same plan, so I'm using it).
A typical week looks like this:
- Monday = rest day (love that the week starts with rest - how can you argue with that?!); - Tuesday = swim/run (distances and times vary as the plan progresses); - Wednesday = bike/run; - Thursday = swim/bike; -Friday = run; - Saturday = bike; - Sunday = run.
I've previously altered this schedule slightly to fit our life schedule, and will likely do the same this time. For example, this week I just biked on Thursday, and swam today instead of running. Because my run is probably my strong suit, and has the greatest chance for injury over the long-term, I will probably do fewer runs than the plan provides and instead put that time toward a strength session and more biking. Drew and I usually ride long on Sundays, and we can run with Cath's marathon training group on Saturdays, so those days usually get reversed. Don Fink, the guy who put this plan together, encourages people to do some measure of strength training each week - mostly core stuff, and nothing too exhausting - and I'm going to try to keep at least one session in each week, which I didn't bother to do the last time we IM trained. We'll see if bringing it back into the fold will make any difference.
Other than that, I plan on trying to keep to the plan pretty vigorously this year. I did well this week - which is probably a good thing, seeing as it was week 1 - and hit each of the workouts, except that run on Friday (which, as mentioned, will probably disappear from my schedule altogether). So far, so good, but it's early still - the hard work is still a ways down the road.