Sunday, January 26, 2014

Comfort Zone - that place where ZZZZZZZs happen.........

Riding the high of a great race finally, I stepped into this week with renewed energy and commitment. Finally, it feels like the drought has broken and while I know there will always be some hurdle to jump, it sure does help when you are walking a little taller.

Monday was rest, swim/stretch and treatment. I caught up with Coach for treatment and as he worked on autopilot on the legs and lower back, I yammered on about race day and ran him through the race by recounting bee stings, murky water, having to work hard to stay in front of Sandra and birthday cakes. We laughed. We also talked about coming back to team run group training. Ok, now I'm worried, but ok, let's give it a crack.

Tuesday, on the wind trainer. The little ride looked so cute sitting up there on his race wheels all sparkly. The legs ticked over for an easy 30min roll. All good.

Wednesday morning and I am up with the sounds of sparrows farting. I packed all my work gear, shower, and personal gear the night before. Talk about practice in visualizing, walking mentally through the day so I didn't forget anything. I rolled up to running group and the gathering of black red and white. Due to my many costume changes on the weekend and the fact I only do a load of washing twice a week, I had no run top clean so I looked like the odd man out. Lesson learned. I did the warm up and then ran with Megz for the first few rounds. I was chatting so much I forgot I was supposed to be walking every 5 mins. oh, well the knee was ok, let's keep going. In the end Coach told me to stop, not the leg. That was so good in my books. Although I had been in comfortable pace the whole time, I had been pushed outside the 'comfort zone'. That place where my mind starts stressing. But I pulled through ok and walked to cool down before a long stretch. After the run, I went back to Coach's place for an update on my strength training sessions. We looked at what I was doing now and he made a few alterations and so now I have new exercises to focus on and again, some renewed energy towards it. I love 1/4 squats - don't you?

Thursday, due to a sewerage pipe leaking into the harbour where we normally swim, yew..... we moved the swim to North Beach. Well, I have to tell you I reckon most of the Crew opted out due to the swim being moved to the surf.

The postcard version of North Gong Beach. Far from actually what it looked like for our session.
There was a big rip in the middle of the swim which swept us out quickly and we had to dive under the waves. Some big sets had me breathing and working hard to get out behind the breakers, but once we were out the back, we bobbed about waiting for the boys to set the buoys. Once set, we swam, headed for the harbour and used the smaller lighthouse as our sighting point. Hard to do when the waves were choppy and I ended up in the troughs. I stuck with Skip, as she and Katie and I were the only girls that had turned up. Megz was waiting on shore for us. We did turns around the buoys and came in and back out 3 times. One of the returns to shore saw me catch a wave and bodysurf a good 20 metres. Another wave picked me up and spear tackled me into the sand and I found myself rolling under the water, holding my breath. I shouldered the sandy bottom, screwed up into a ball and sideways washed up a good 20 metres down again, just not so classy ;) Ha, I hadn't been dumped in years and I always hated it as a kid. Fix the cozzy, pull the sand out of your pants, salt water stinging our eyes. But in a wetsuit and goggles it wasn't as bad as I expected. All good.  On the last time in, I could feel I was getting tired and I really thought Coach would give the girls an 'all done' signal before heading back out one more time with the boys. Nope, he started calling the set and looked at me. We were going in. Dig deep Sammi. I headed out and punched through the waves. Every breath was part salty water, part air. I grabbed at water and pulled hard through it. Skip and I made it back out to the buoys and by crikey we were going to get the set done. Twice round the buoys. Both of which were now drifting as the weights bounced on the sandy bottom. We finally finished and headed back to shore. I knew the waves were settling as the night drew in. They always do. I learned that from my sailing days. So in my head I was battling the exhaustion with calming reassuring thoughts that the sea wasn't as rough as it had been when we first ventured in. It was a good feeling, standing on shore chatting with the boys and Skip and looking out to sea. Sammi once again outside her Comfort Zone, pushing past where any Sammi had been for a long time.

Friday, Swim with Roberto. A great swim and while my shoulders were tired, pool swimming was a breeze compared to what I had done the day before. Bolstered, alive, reassured, confident, HAPPY!

Saturday, I rode with Roberto and The Onion Man. After a false start with a mechanical issue I rejoined the boys and finished with a 60km ride and sat comfortably the whole way with some Time Trials and hill climbs thrown in too. The hardest part of the day was leaving the house for the second time after we had fixed my bike, when all of me wanted to go back to bed with Gaz. Out of my comfort zone again and doing the job.

And today, a 7km run 1hour with a 4min run/30sec walk throughout. I was comfortable and threw a few hills into the course. Hot, happy and content with the itb once again. Toooooooo goood!

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