Week after week I've been saying the workouts get harder… but this week there was a new kind of challenge that wasn't imposed by more reps or longer laps. Weighted shorts: these were my nemesis, pulling me back and slowing me down. Lisa made me wear them for the duration of my workout, to simulate the weight of sand and water that will plaque me on race day.

She did at one point say that much of my training will feel more difficult than most of the race itself, but the point is to push myself as hard as I can leading up to the race, so on September 7th It'll feel like a piece of cake! Not really, but it will be easier if I'm used to being in a lot of pain.

You can how well I made this fashion statement in the slideshow. The weights clipped around the waist, and the legs hold ten pounds. It doesn't sound like a lot, but it makes every action much more difficult and more frustrating.

One of the keys to making it through the race is to not get frustrated, and all in all I think I've been doing a pretty decent job of staying positive through everything Lisa throws at me. This extra weight took extra mental strength, though.

The heat was another factor working against me during this week's session. It was at least eighty degrees as ran, shuffled and crawled through the sand. I kept my Powerade close at hand- it's very very important to stay hydrated during physical exertion, and on race day several water stations will be set up to keep competitors cool.

Oh, and while I'm on the subject of race day, I should mention that a little birdy told me it's actually going to be longer that 12 miles. The team is thinking of officially upping the course to sixteen miles, which I'm going to say right now I don't think I'll be able to do… I'm just being realistic! I'll see how I feel on race day, but right now my knee and hip are still being rehabbed.

Anyway, back to training. I was relieved when we moved inside for the end of the workout (I've never been so grateful for air conditioning!) I did some ab work and arm work to finish up the day.

You'll see a variety of exercises in the slideshow, some old and some new, and some old moves with new twists.

Here's what I have to look forward to next week: the weighted vest! As if the weighted shorts weren't enough… I have to complete the outfit. But it doesn't stop there. In the coming weeks Lisa said I'll add ankle weights and wrist weights, as well. Should be a good look for me! Keep checking back for weekly updates, and as always, email me with any comments or questions at ewelsh@wicu.com. Happy training!