Saturday, January 11, 2014

Week 30 Update: First week back from Portland - college football bowl games and a Wednesday to remember.

Week 30 Update: posted on Jan 11, 2014 but for the week beginning on Dec 29th, 2013

My first week back from Portland was a blast. I had a ton of work to catch up on but I focused on getting back into my hypoxic training, lifting, and swimming routines now that my back pain subsided. Here are a few things I thought about during the week:

  • The combination of hypoxic training and hypoxic sleeping interferes with my aerobic conditioning. The higher I train and sleep, the lower my workload and the higher the likelihood of detraining during this period. I decided after careful deliberation to mix in normoxia training along with hypoxic training to ensure I remain fit.
  • Climbing with Patrick (my son) really stood out as the highlight of my Portland trip. He climbed so well and I look forward to more days out with him in the future.
  • Watching college football while training makes the boring training routine go by much faster. Movies occupy my attention but not as much as sports. We have a few exciting months ahead with the NFL playoffs, winter Olympic games, and then the NCAA basketball tournament (not my favorite) to keep me entertained.

Workout Progress

Got back to Virginia and got back on the horse. As you will see, I broke my tradition of resting on Wednesdays but I had to workout on New Year's Day during all those college football games. It was a great day of training and I was happy to get back to training after the time away in Portland.

plot of chunk WeekEx

See my only deviation from my restful Wednesdays? It was a great day and I was so happy I could watch about 5 games and chip away at my training goals. The week started out easy but ended with a bang. Also, while in Portland, I chose not to swim to allow my back to fully recover. Getting back into the pool felt great. I think I might start taking a few days off here and there to keep me fresh in the pool. Too many long days combined with long swim practices make me rather stale and unmotivated (ask my lane mates about my attitude these days - not good to say the least). Sorry Bob and Elaina for being so grumpy.

plot of chunk DailyWL

Week 30 lead me to almost eclipsing the 500 hour mark. By the middle of next week, I will be over that mark and creeping ever closer to both my training goals and departure date. Only 15 weeks to go before I leave for Nepal. Whew! It feels like time is flying by now.

plot of chunk CumWL

Weekly Summary

The return home was sweet. We arrived home to two happy puppies (not really puppies but they will always be our puppies) fully refreshed from 10 days away. Immediately, we slept at 8,000 feet and I began my hypoxic training in earnest again. As I indicated in my previous post, I mixed both hypoxic training and normoxia training to ensure I would not lose my training base before I leave. Too many hours of hypoxic training really lowers my workload. Running and swimming are the only things I do these days that will never be hypoxic - except when coach Cheryl has us swim underwater or hypoxic drills. Believe it or not, I do not fare well in those drills. I used to be able to swim the length or two underwater but these days I struggle to make it a single length. I try but I'm not good. Strange since I spend so many hours these days in a hypoxic environment. You would think I could hold my breath but I think there is a huge difference between holding my breath and breathing less oxygen-rich air. I like breathing. Air is my friend.


Just as I noted in my last post, the figure below includes all the current (Jan 2014) data so you can see that from early December to late December, I was on a good trajectory for all measures except for soreness.

plot of chunk Mood

Hypoxic Training

Like the figure above, my hypoxic figure below includes all the most recent data. My recovered body endured more hypoxia this week. I responded well and shortly I will start posting my training response to hypoxia. The data are quite compelling but I will refrain from describing the results until I gather sufficient data. Suffice it to say that I can now train at 12,000 feet at the same workload as I did before at sea-level. My pulse oximetry data indicate that I can handle that altitude (and even higher to 15,000 feet) without too much of a workload hit. I am really getting excited by this whole process.

plot of chunk Hypoxia

Recovery (Restwise Data)

Here is my full Restwise data all the way to the present (Jan 11th, 2014). I started entering data again during this week (beginning on December 31st when we returned to VA).

plot of chunk RestwiseData

Updates for the week

As promised, my second post of the day and the new year. I have one more to go to be fully caught up. Stay tuned for one more update post and then a full post on my Rainier climb with my son.

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