By now, I think it’s safe to say that we are deep into the Lake Stevens 70.3 training. Week 7? Week 16?
Honestly, I’ve lost track as it’s been a blur of trying to balance work, training, traveling back and forth between Oregon and California to see my husband, and you know…life (and I’m just too lazy to go back and count the weeks).
From the library of…”Selfies to communicate with my husband and this ridiculous long distance relationship we have.”
What I can tell you is that the past few weeks have been a steady build of me trying to get all of my Training Peak boxes to turn green and 9, 13, 15 and now 18 hour training weeks.
But it hasn’t been without a fair share of hiccups.
This training cycle has been much different than the past as I am working with Sonja and focused on MAF training. MAF training is “Maximum Aerobic Function” training and focuses on developing your aerobic foundation, which is especially important in endurance events.
You do this by a variety of ways, but the first is by using the 180 formula to find your MAF number. Training and various workouts are then developed around your individual MAF number and let me tell you…it is frustrating.
In order to hit your MAF you have to slow down…I mean really slow down. According to Sonja, I was running around town with an extremely high heart-rate, and not taking the time to build a machine that would last.
Over the past three months, MAF has caused me a good share of self-imposed distress. Why weren’t my MAF times improving? Why do I feel like I’m getting slower? Why does it spike past the 200s and then back down? What the hell is wrong? Sonja maaaay have even received an email, complete with multiple F-bombs and me ready to throw MAF out the window.
Her response? I’ve been building a tall house, with a little foundation in San Francisco, but what I really need to do is build a one-story house, with a wide foundation in Texas. Check. Got it. But why are my heart-rate numbers still not making sense?
Then Sonja finally asked me one overlooked question, “How old is your heart-rate monitor?”
“Uhhh, probably 5 or 6 years old. I got it with my 305,” I replied.
I can imagine Sonja’s jaw was either on the ground or her head was just shaking in her hands. Apparently, heart-rate monitors only last 1-2 years!
Why hasn’t anyone told me this?! It’s like the covert technology hardware industry secret that along with your computers, Blue-Ray players and cell phones, your heart-rate monitor kicks the bucket after a couple years.
Sure you can change the battery and do some of the maintenance tricks of the trade, but it was time to upgrade. So I headed over to Amazon and I bought the Garmin premium heart rate monitor (soft strap).
Waiting two days for Amazon Prime felt like an eternity (#firstworldproblems), but as soon as I got it and was able to head out for a run, it was like a heavy burden had been lifted off of my shoulders.
Finally, my numbers are starting to make sense. Not only were the spikes gone, but my perceived effort matched and my sanity is starting to come back. I still have much more hard work ahead of me, but at least I can take the worry and confusion off of my plate around the outlandish numbers. Control what you can, let go of the rest. I’m working on it…
So it’s time for another friendly PSA: fitness technology isn’t indestructible and sometimes, it isn’t you. Make sure you’ve updated the technology, replaced the batteries and taken care of your toys.
Oh and another PSA: make sure your fix-a-flat kit actually has some tubes.