I won't go so far as to say that I was feeling smug, but I was definitely having mild self-congratulation at having made it through this week of training without any meltdowns or major failures; I couldn't quite get myself out of bed at 7 this morning, reset alarm for 7:30 and then 8 (probably wasn't sleep till 1am, as I spent the evening on the computer filing my taxes), but was on the road by 8:30 for my short recovery ride.
Riding over to Central Park, which I haven't done since last summer, is never my favorite thing, but on a Sunday early morning there are no delivery trucks parked across traffic and fewer buses, it was not bad, I thought about how much progress I have made (psychologically, not in terms of fitness!) re: cycling since last year.
Then I got to the park - it slowly dawned on me after seeing the signs and course marshals and what was initially a suspiciously empty road - THERE WAS A RACE...
To my utter horror, I was approaching the start line just as runners were filling the corrals and getting ready to go. It is truly beyond belief how horribly crowded it was (maybe 8,000 runners?); I had to get off my bike and walk for a bit, as of course late runners are jostling to get to a spot in a corral and not at all looking out for cyclists, and all the normal recreational folks are grumpily trying to get by as well, and cyclists are shouting at pedestrians, and it is altogether horrible.
THERE ARE TOO MANY PEOPLE IN NEW YORK.
Anyway, it was very unpleasant, and I felt extremely and irrationally distressed (and wished for about the five millionth time in my life that I was the type of person to shout a few expletives, shake my fist in the air and move on, instead of feeling outwardly quiet but privately very upset and having to fight a very strong urge to burst into tears!). I rode one loop and then figured I'd better get out while the going was good (the race was run clockwise, so I hadn't yet encountered the front runners). Rode over to the west side path and had a pretty nice quiet ride up to the lighthouse and back; it is about 50, very gray and overcast, so there weren't a ton of people out.
I was supposed to ride for an hour and run for .5hr, but the ride clocked in at 1:24 by the time I got home and I figured I should cut my losses. Meeting my dad for lunch and a play, really I had better get in the shower (I wished I had been wearing "booties" over my shoes this morning, it's much colder down by the water than it is in Central Park, my feet were mildly uncomfortable).
Anyway, no harm done, it is just yet again a reminder of why I find cycling by far the most frazzle-inducing of the three triathlon sports. This week has been a considerable success, more generally. It would be insane to obsess too much about hitting all the workouts, but this week really mattered to me. I was explaining to my dad the other day the principles of progressive overload and periodization (I love this stuff - Soviet sports science!), and the long weekend workouts of the biggest "build" week in each training block (mesocycle) plus the recovery period to absorb them are the single most important aspect of any IM training plan whatsoever. Very relieved to have nailed the workouts pretty much as planned.
This coming week's a bit weird, very very busy at work (including evening obligations on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday) and then flying to South Carolina on Friday for two days. I will take the recovery week aspect seriously and try and stay on an even keel insofar as such a thing is possible (not really, at this time of the school year - frazzle city!). The next block of training is going to be challenging, as the two "build" weeks are probably the two single busiest weeks of my entire school year, but I am absolutely delighted to say that Triathlete Lauren is willing & able to join me for my two long bike rides (4:30 on 4/23, 5:00 on 5/1), which makes me expansively optimistic that I will actually be able to execute them! This is good.
Total training hours for the week: c. 14:20 (YES!)