Big Dirtbag Fitness weekend. Bigger than planned, actually. You see, I planned on swimming Friday but things got in the way and I had to push it back to Saturday morning, pushing my run back to Saturday afternoon, which I think may have contributed to total run fail. Anyway, my swim was pretty stellar. I think having a goal like my upcoming Popo'ia Swim is helping immensely with workout motivation and focus in the water. And I'm laying down some solid splits. Swimming is fun.
Running, however, seems to suck right now for some reason. I don't know why, but for the second weekend run in a row my stomach cramped up and screwed up the second half of my run. I was feeling strong, setting a good pace, and being all kind of positive, when suddenly I was cramping and slowing. Never stopped, but I did slow way down. It turned into a trail run for a while there because I wanted to be off the road in case stopping was required. I've looked at what I was eating before the runs, looked at my hydration during the runs, and I'm really not sure what's causing the problems. I only shut down once in my entire training cycle leading up to the Honolulu Tri and now it's happened twice in two weeks. Frustrating.
Running on the trail also meant that I would encounter wildlife. Not big, exciting wildlife like a pig or a...well, we don't really have big exciting wildlife. However, I did run through a nearly-invisible cloud of gnats hovering mindlessly in the middle of my path. And I destroyed them. Dirtbag Fitness Fun Fact #1: Gnats will stick to sweat.
Dirtbag Fitness Fun Fact #2: When you arrive home from a gnat-filled run, the Super Awesome Wife will make a face, take a picture with a camera that magically appears in her hands, then demand you take a shower immediately if not sooner. *the above picture does not do this justice. I had gnats across my shoulders, down to my waist, and in my hair. Billions of the little bastards. It was a massacre. I'm on trial for war crimes by the Gnat Council.
Sunday was a long ride day. The thing about long rides on the bike is, you really ought to start early. Before the sun gets too high in the sky and temperatures start rising. OR, you could be up late hanging out with friends after spending most of the night battling a severely upset stomach that carried over from the ruined run the day before, causing you to sleep in and not leave on your ride until 11am. It's an option.
But, even with leaving much later than I planned, it was still a good ride. Got really hot a few times, but I also got poured on for about ten minutes. Weather God balance, I guess. I'm pretty happy with how it went. I didn't bonk nearly as bad as I did last week during my 50 miler. Part of that was probably the brutal wind last week as compared to yesterday. I finished in 3 hours 4 minutes, a respectable time. Especially with the climb up Pineapple Hill (which I felt went well and I did in 35 minutes) and the long, shallower but still difficult climb back from Kunia at the end of the ride. I really was gunning for three hours flat and just missed it. Maybe next weekend. I don't know that I like being out on the bike for three hours, but I do like that it makes me feel strong. I'm looking at a century in September so I need to be feeling good after 50. Mileage building. Grind it out and make it smooth.
This was also my first ride with my new saddle and so far I'm very happy. I will write a full review after a few more times out to be sure my posterior has had ample opportunity to form an opinion.