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Knee Pain, No Gain

Greetings from the land of tropical Montana. That’s right, tropical. I don’t know what we did to appease the weather gods, but Montana has been experiencing record high temps for this time of year. Today, mid 40s and sunny. Sure, we have enough wind to host the world’s greatest….or most dangerous…. kite flying contest (I’m talking 60mph gusts), but usually we have that plus 4 feet of snow and -10 temps. I guess I shouldn’t complain. If I know mother nature, we will be suffering for this with blizzards in June. In the meantime, maybe I will get an outside ride in this weekend. You know, like with two wheels on asphalt and actual wind on my face.

Training has been slow but hard through the holidays. I basically have been running less but faster every time. I am really focusing on getting more “slow burn” tempo runs in. Prior to this, I was doing a lot of 7:10 pace miles with breaks between. If not that, usually a lot of 9:20 pace long runs. I want to cut the difference some and put more 7:30ish multi-milers in. I’m hoping that doing so will give me more speed and endurance with the Ironman runs. So far, things are going pretty well.

While I am surprised how much I can do just by telling myself to go faster, my left knee is especially not pleased. I have had intermittent knee pain with long runs in the past, but this is different. It is lingering worse than a post all-you-can-eat-Taco-Bell-coupon flatus. It is especially killing me when I keep my knee extended or when I try to pull my foot out of my shoe. The doctor in me thinks it’s just a minor sprain. Some rest and Ibuprofen and I will be back to normal. The triathlete in me says this:

It’s true, doctors make the worse patients. Seriously, we do. Using the second best lesson I’ve learned from marriage, compromise, I shunned the running shoes for a ride today. (the best lesson of marriage is that she is always right). Since I took yesterday off due to the knee, I figured it was as good as time as any to do a new functional threshold test. Here’s the dirty pic:

Despite feeling like someone had replaced my knee’s synovial fluid with molasses for the first part of the ride, I was able to crank out a 2.4% increase in my FTP. And, if I remember correctly (which is always a big if), I am heading into the off season training at my previous all-time high for FTP. With my weight at 140, this puts me at 3.32 w/kg. Good place to be at the start of some hardcore training.

Speaking of the off season, the party starts up next week. My training buddies and I have some serious work planned and we hope to get some more virtual group training rides in. For now, I guess will allow a few more Christmas cookies through the door before its eviction time.

In the spirit of working out and the soon to be declared New Year’s resolutions, I had presented this LMFAO video. I had heard this song many times before, but I had never actually seen the video. Hilarious, but unfortunately, YouTube took it off their site. Chalk up another victory for censorship….


Hump Day Ride

Hit the trainer for this evening. My boys and I are attempting to organize some virtual trainer group rides. Update on that next week. Here’s tonight’s work. Short and hard.

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