Running, on the other hand, has not been as consistent as I had hoped. My plan for the prep phase of Ironman training was to do regular 10- to 20-minute runs after every bike ride. I have been struggling with lack of motivation to run in (and on) snow and ice at 9 pm in temperatures in the teens and 20s after getting off the bike soaked in sweat. I keep telling myself I have plenty of time to get used to the transition, but I'm disappointed in myself nonetheless. To combat the mental block, I bought new trail shoes. Thanks to the Borders Rewards Perks program, I got a pair of New Balance 840s for under $50. They fit perfectly and have monster treads that give a little grip on snow. Sometimes, I just need to jump-start the desire, and it already got me out the door for two runs of 1:15 this week.
And finally, I'm back in the water, swimming at least three times a week. After almost two months off, I'm concentrating on building strength in the water using a pair of old-style rectangular Speedo paddles. I know I'm getting stronger because my arms have that old familiar soreness.
The last component I have yet to add to my training program is the weights. I still don't know how and where it will fit into my schedule, and I'm fighting an irrational fear of weight rooms. Not the weights themselves, but the self-consciousness I feel when I'm using the equipment: Am I doing it right? Is someone going to yell at me? Are people staring at me? I think it stems from my childhood when my swim coach sent us to a Nautilus facility (when Nautilus was "new"). We were "whipped" into submission by muscle-bound arrogant weight-room Nazis who probably polished the equipment after each person used it. The whole trip there, I would cry in the car knowing my every move was going to be scrutinized by a macho mimbo who had nothing better to do than to wield his attitude over a 14-year-old girl. People don't learn by being punished and forced to do three more sets of reps. It made me hate the weight room.