In high school and college, DOUBLES were a way of life.
And by doubles I mean two swim practices a day. During high school I would arrive at school before the sun was up several mornings a week and not leave until after sunset. I had a severe vitamin D deficiency. In college on days where we had double practices, my hair would not dry. I'd throw it into a ponytail after morning practice and it would still be wet when I went to put on my cap for afternoon practice.
Doubles are hard. Getting up at 5am to practice only to return to the pool six or seven hours later to practice AGAIN is crazy. And I think I was crazy because I did doubles for eight years.
When I finished swimming in college, I swore off double practices.
I was fine with getting up early to exercise before work or school OR working out at the end of the day. BUT NOT BOTH.
This all changed when I trained for my first triathlon. I trained with Team In Training and the workout schedule was intense. In order to get into triathlon shape, I did doubles a couple of times a week. I'd scoot off to the gym at 5:30am and then go out for a run with a co-worker at the end of the day. It was intense, but I was single, lived 15 minutes from work, didn't have homework or a dissertation, didn't have a baby, and had nice salary (so I could join the gym close to work).
Now-a-days double workouts seem out of the question. I feel like I'm juggling too many things as it is. I've said "no" to several people recently who wanted me to do this or help out with that. How on earth could I fit in a double?
Well, yesterday I did just that. My father asked if I wanted to do a morning bike ride. It sounded like a good idea. And I knew we'd have a good time together. I also knew that I had an 8 mile training run to fit in. And I want to stick to my training schedule as much as possible.
So I did the 10 miles on the bike with my dad in the morning. Then before dinner time I went out for a 4+ mile run. The second practice on a double day is always hard. My muscles were sore; I was tired; and it would have been easy enough to sit at home and do nothing. But I knew I needed to run.
So I downed 15 ounces of water, strapped on my new iPod armband (thank you, Dad) and hit the road. Four miles later I was done with my first double in nearly six years. Today I am sore. I skipped my recovery run and instead went for a walk with K and then walked to the grocery store.
Tomorrow I run hills.
Saturday I have a 14 miler planned.
After a successful double yesterday, I feel confident about both.
I'm also feeling confident about my sub-4 hour marathon goal.