(M and me on a tandem in Acadia last summer. Because bikes are workout candy, that's why.)
I wrote to my coach this morning asking a question about the training schedule. Most days, there's at least two sports listed, and I wanted to know which one I should choose.
Meet Bricks, the part of the tri world in which you do two sports one right after the other, to acclimate yourself to switching sports.
Today's weren't so hard PHYSICALLY- a 7.5 mile bike ride, and 9x50 drills in a pool. I have no idea what 9x50 drills are yet, so I just swam nine laps with a different stroke each time. Swim clinic is Thursday. I bet they'll straighten me out.
I did encounter two issues, however. The first is a problem I've faced in every endurance event- I totally lose my appetite. I'm not hungry in the morning, anyway, so I tend to drink smoothies for breakfast. But about 5 miles into the bike ride, I generally don't want to drink or eat anything. Since the name of the game in endurance is to fuel while being active so you don't "bonk" (see below), I really, really have to figure out a good way to fuel that won't make me feel sick to my stomach. Although I understand mid-event puking is sometimes considered a badge of honor, (YOU'RE HARDCORE, BABY!), it just sounds rather unladylike to me.
The other problem is the transition. As I pulled myself out of the pool and came into the locker room, I toweled off and met my nemesis: trying to pull spandex bike shorts on over a body that is not totally dry. Should I spare you the details? Hmmm... hard to tell. Will you guys donate more or less if I tell you how awkward that little problem is? Let me know!
Anyway, I got home, forced down the rest of my drink, and washed up, vacuumed the bedroom, made the bed, and washed the dishes... all trying to convince my appetite to come back so I can have lunch. I'll obviously have to work on this...
PS- bonk: bonk is a term in endurance events like marathons or centuries where you suddenly have no energy left. At all. You just stop. You feel like you can't move at all and that death would be too much trouble. I've never bonked quite that badly, but I've had my moments where I've gotten close. (My favorite was standing at a rest stop, head on my handlebars while a friend coaxed me to try and drink more stuff and I begged for a nap. She was right, though, a drink and a snack, and I was good to go.) The cure to bonking can be a little rest, a stubborn teammate who will force you back on the bike, and immediate ingestion of something high-calorie- gatorade, clif bars, peanut butter... once the energy starts circulating in your body, you can usually move again. Some people swear by GU or gels, but I find these cake-batter consistency chemical creations to be among the nastier things on earth. They are what Satan will feed people in Hell.