July Reviewed

 

Wow, where did July go!?  Time seems to be passing by so quickly now, as another month of training has been and gone.  Here's July's training by numbers:
Swim: 50,300m
Bike: 1598.8 TSS (training stress score)
Run: 191.15 miles
Drills: 1h40m
Stretching: 4h30m
Total: 75h42m
At first glance, total training hours are a couple less than in May and June, however, that doesn't quite tell the whole story.  In the middle of the month I took a weeks rest in an effort to freshen up and get set for the final run in to October. The last two weeks have both been 20+hr training weeks.  I managed to scrape in another 50k swimming month - my third in a row!  In the last few weeks I've managed to get back in the pool and have a coach look at my technique.  This has been a real eye opener and I can already feel the benefit of a few fundamental changes.
Bike TSS is down as well, mainly as I didn't cycle at all during my rest week as I didn't have access to my bike.  I was feeling that in recent weeks that my FTP (functional threshold power) on the bike was starting to stagnate, but last week I set a new PB for a set of 2x 20's.  This as well as a few other high quality sessions has given me a real confidence boost that my riding, which is my strength, is still improving.
Running volume is a little higher than past weeks, and the goal is for this trend to continue into August.  It's here where the bulk of my energy needs to be focussed, as this is where I potentially have the most time to improve.  Long runs have been full of quality running at open half-marathon pace and marathon pace; short runs have been either hard or easy; and the mid-length runs have generally been steady. Looking ahead to this month, I should be getting in 200-220 miles in total, trying to build durability for the Ironman run.
July was a great month.  If you go by training hours you'd think I'd stagnated, but hours don't really tell you a whole lot.  They're simply an easy way for people to relate to the amount of training you're doing, but hours alone give no indication as to the quality of that work.  I could noodle around for 30-40 hours a week at an easy pace if I wanted, and those training hours may impress people, but that's not the point of training.  After July, confidence is high.