Friday, July 30, 2010

My Bendy Parts Won't Bend

All I have to say is oooofa! So I did it, I got up and worked out again this morning. So that makes a full week and no playing catch up all week. It honestly feels good to not be as behind as I normally am. What doesn't feel good are the after effects of the sculpting class I took. I got out of bed this morning stiff as a board. But not the normal stiff. My legs work, I can sit on the toilet normally and go up and down stairs. It is my arms that are killing me. My biceps and triceps hurt so much it is crazy. But I guess it goes to show that I haven't worked them hard in a while. I honestly can't wait to go home tonight and lay on the couch and not use my arms.

And here is the best thing that I have heard in a long while...tomorrow I can sleep in! Yup you heard that right kids! Tomorrow I do not have to get up at the ass crack of dawn and eat a powerbar and get on the bike. I can sleep in! And by sleep in, I am sure I will be up at 7am. But I am going to give it the good old college try and see if I can make it until 10! Crazy, I know!

Sunday, well Sunday is another story. I will be up and out of the house by 4:45am. I have to be down in Belmar, New Jersey with enough time to set up my transition area and visit the port-o-johns the usual million times before the 7am race start. The plan for Sunday, as I mentioned earlier in the week is to go all out and to not be afraid that I might fall apart. If I push too hard on the bike and fall apart on the run, then I fall apart. I just need to learn my limits and the only way to do it is to try to push them. So that is the plan.

Everyone have a great weekend and I will be back with hopefully some positive results on Monday.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sleeping My Way Through the Day

So I did it, I got up for the fourth day in a row and worked out. I will say that when the alarm went off at 5:20am I was less than happy to get up and hardly awake for that matter. It took a lot to shove myself out of bed. So before I get into today, I just wanted to mention that I did one of my ZR Runs (formerly known as walks) last night before I met some friends out and what a pleasant surprise. I ran in Zone R at a 10:54 pace. And I ran the entire time. Yes, you heard it right! I ran the entire time! Ok enough patting myself on the back, on to today.

So I got up and headed to the gym where I teach to take that lifting class I mentioned yesterday (part of the ever evolving "get in shape" plan), and it is weird, I feel like sometimes when instructors know there is another instructor in their class they go totally wild. So I have subbed for this instructor before, but I have never actually met her. Of course, I walk in and introduce myself and start talking to a few women who take my spinning class. The the torture begins. Man it was intense! But I have to say that I did really enjoy it (although her regulars seemed like they were dying so I have to think she may have amped it up a bit). So now I have to create a nice habit out of it! How many weeks does it take for something to stick?

After class I headed home with the sinking feeling that I might not be able to use my arms for the rest of the week. Thankfully by around 10am I was feeling a bit better. I headed out at lunchtime for a quick 45 minute Z1 run, only to get to the gym to find out the AC was broken. Considering the downpour outside, I decided to suck it up and sweat it out. Needless to say my HR was all over the place, so I am not really sure how I did, but I did it and it's over with.

Tonight I just have to squeak out a quick 1:30 ZR/Z1 ride and then I have one more day to complete my first full week of early mornings. Fingers crossed that I can do it!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

3 Day Streak

I am on a 3 day streak of getting up early to work out. I just have to get out of bed for 2 more days at 5:30am to make it to my day to sleep in! Very exciting indeed! Tomorrow I am going to go back to strength training. I feel like that is the one thing my work out and my flabby arms are lacking. So I am going to work my way back into it. But as I am sure all of you who are training know, it is so hard to another yet another thing to your workout schedule. I mean, I would love to get back into pilates or try to get into yoga, but when would I do it? So I will just have to settle for a quick 45 min strength training class once a week and then try to get in one more day of weights. Maybe at lunch? Who knows! Buy it has to happen! Maybe that will finally kick start some freakin weight loss here!

So since I am racing this weekend, I don't have a long ride and run on Saturday, which if I could do a back flip, I would. But I do have a race and then a quick run and ride on Sunday. I am considering doing the run and ride on Saturday just to get it out of the way. I figure they are short, so I don't think they will effect my race on Sunday. So then after I am done on Sunday, I can head home, go to brunch (my favorite meal!) and then relax. So the plan is, sleep in then get that hour out of the way on Saturday so I can be lazy after the race on Sunday.

Oh and one last thing...Any thoughts on Spinerval dvds? I am interested in purchasing some, but which ones should I purchase? Thoughts? Any input would be very helpful.

Monday, July 26, 2010

3 Weekends of Racing Coming Up!

So for the next three weekends I am going to do a bit a racing. I have 2 sprints then an Olympic and I must say I am ready for it! I feel like since I have been doing more longer races this year, that I haven't done as many races as I did last year. So now I am going to amp it up for the next couple of weeks in preparation for the last HIM of the season in September.

This weekend I will be racing a Sprint in Belmar, NJ. I haven't done a true sprint yet this season and the plan is to race all out. The problem with me is that once I get on the bike, I get cautious. I tend to always worry that if I push too hard on the bike that I may lose it on the run. And then on the run I am worried that I am going to crash if I push too hard too early. But I need to shake that and just try and go after it this weekend. I mean compared to my other races these distances are nothing. So I need to force myself to keep that in mind the entire race.

So the game plan is to take it easy this week and get myself ready for this weekend. It's time to get that racing confidence back!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Winds of Change

I am feeling good and I am feeling committed (this week!). I have set some goals and now I have to work my ass off to reach them and I have the last half of the season to do it.

This week has been jam packed with workouts. And I have to say I had one of my best runs in a long time yesterday. I ran 45 min in Z1 at a 9:40 pace. And it turns out I Was in the lower half of Z1 so I really could have kicked it up a bit and bettered my pace. Now to some that may not seem that great, but for me it is wonderful! With all of the heat the past few weeks even some of my Zone 1 runs have had to include walking. And there was none of that yesterday! So I am looking forward to taking a stab at it again tonight.

I also figured out the remainder of my schedule and it looks like I will be racing for most of August. Gotta get in as many as I can before I start complaining about it being cold out and prepping for the marathon. Ahh the marathon....yet another goal I have set that I have to reach. But that is a conversation for a different time!

Happy training!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What A Weekend!!

So the reason for my absenteeism is that I finally got to take some days off! Well kind of. We took a long weekend (Friday thru Monday) up in Rochester. It was time spent with the bf's family, but still not time spent at work. We got up there at around midnight on Thursday night and headed straight to bed. Friday, I actually had the day off from training so we set out to do some shopping and then went to a cooking class in Canandaigua at the New York Wine and Culinary Center.

We took class called New York Steakhouse and we learned a ton about choosing and cooking meat, then we put all that knowledge to work. Here is what was on the menu, Marinated Flank Steak with Horseradish Sauce, Pan Roasted Rib Roast with Crispy Mushrooms, Bacon Wrapped Filet Mignon with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Classic Grill New York Strip Steak and The Perfect Burger. Each cooking area had 4 stations and each station cooked one meal with sides, then after everything was complete we sat down and sampled everything. Now I can say this was hardly ok in terms of the Core diet, but I am just going to count this as my cheat meal(s) for the week. We continued to eat and drink until we could do no more then headed home to drop into a nice food coma accompanied by the "meat sweats".

Saturday we got up early and it was time to tackle my 1:55 Z1 run. Since I was in unfamiliar territory, I decided to hop on the trainer. I pedaled and sweated out saturated meat fat for the entire 2 hours while catching up on all the magazines I have neglected for the past 3 weeks, then I set out for a quick 25 out and back Z1 T run. Once I got back it was time to eat again!

The afternoon was filled with graduation parties and picnics and again we hit the hay early for another fun filled day ahead. Sunday brought with it, family brunch a quick 4 mile jog and then family dinner. For dinner we decided that we would control the menu (we being me)and I opted for a dinner a bit lower in calories than the rest of the weekend. We munched on white bean dip, vegetable tart and a nice fresh green salad followed up by a delicious fruit tart.

Monday we attempted to head out on a quick 30 mile ride, but we were quickly sent back home due to the rain. So we decided to hit the road and head back home. By the time we got back I was in no mood to work out so I opted to clean and relax instead. So the rest of the week will be a fantastic game of catch up! That seems to be the on going theme with me as of late. Now it is off to lunch and a quick run!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Today is My Friday

And I couldn't be happier. After a nice night of relaxing trainer rides and sushi, I managed to peel myself out of bed at a decently early time and get in another 1:15 Z1ride on the trainer this morning. And it actually wasn't to painful. I think having a bad run at the last race may have helped me in the movitivation category of training a bit. Now I have something to prove, right? RIGHT! Ok enough of the pep talk.

As I mentioned today is my Friday and I am very excited. Friday and Monday will be my first days off since accepting my new job and let me tell you I am in need. I love my job, don't get me wrong, but it's summer, we all need some time to just relax. And what better time to schedule my relaxation than on a recovery week. Tonight, after work I will head out on a quick 35 min run and then the weekend begins.

Luckly I don't have much going on in terms of work outs. Well at least compared to last week! So I will be fresh and ready to start over on Monday. Well I hope everyone has a great weekend and I will check in again if I have anything noteworthy to talk about. If not, see you on Monday! Happy training!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

It's Time to Get Back On The Horse...Well Maybe the Pony for This Week

So my lazy days are done, I have to get back to training today. Since all I have done is a tiny bit of spinning in the last 2 days, now I have to get back on my bike, chafed ass and all. Tonight I am going to get in a nice 50 min recovery ride. While doing that I need to work on my mental game. I have think I have the remainder of my tri season planned out and now I just need to get my mind back into shape.

It seems that everyone is in a bit of a funk lately, so I don't feel that bad for not wanting to do anything. But I will force my way right back into it all. I am thinking about also adding in some weight lifting classes into my schedule. You know, since I have so much free time! I am thinking twice a week should work. We shall see.

Other than that I am enjoying the last few hours of laziness and then it back into the swing of things.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Race Report - Amica 70.3, Providence, Rhode Island

Friday night we packed up the car with the dog crate, the bike and all of the other gear necessary to spend the weekend away from home. It was the dog's first real road trip and all I could worry about at that point was her puking in the car like she normally does. Needless to say, she didn't!

Once we got up to Seekonk, MA and found our hotel we settled in for some TV watching and passed out shortly after. The alarm went off at 7:30am on Saturday and it was time for some carb loading and race prep. We remembered from last time to get up early because we had a late start to our Saturday in 2009 and we ended up wasting the entire day driving all over RI.

We headed over to the local Friendly's to pick up the super breakfast and after stuffing myself we headed to the expo right when it opened. Once there, we picked up all the necessary items, along with a few unnecessary things as well, which ended up coming in handy in the end, and headed over the T2 to drop off my bag. Now if you aren't familiar with this race, I can explain. The majority of the race happens from Narragansett, RI to Providence. Once you are in Providence, you hit T2 and then run the half marathon. So it is a point to point course.

After dropping off my T2 items we headed back to the hotel to eat more and grab the bike and the dog to head to the beach to set up T1. Once again we got there right when it opened unloaded and then realized, we had the whole day to relax. We headed back to the hotel again, and watched some TV, then headed out to see Despicable Me (in 3D), which was amazing and then off to eat some pasta and chicken.

While out at dinner I got my HR numbers to follow from my coach and we talked a bit about strategy and the things I needed to remember to do. Like for instance, to make sure I peed while on the bike. Now this is an issue for me, while sitting hunched over, I just can't seem to do it, but he reminded me that no matter what it took I had to. He recommended what with the recent heat that I spend the bike in mid Z2 and then take the average of that and add 10 beats for my run pace, also allowing an extra 5 beats for climbing hills.

After dinner we headed back to the hotel and I was out like a light by 9pm. At that point I wasn't feeling nervous. I physically had felt off all day, but my nerves were ok. Actually more ok than they have ever been.

We left for the race on Sunday morning at 4:20 and when we got the beach there was a traffic jam of about 50 cars trying to get into the park. Athletes decided to just get out and walk and meet their drivers somewhere near T1. When I got to T1 to finish set up all I could think about was going to the bathroom and I had to go BAD! So I managed to set everything up and pump my tires in under ten minutes and then it was off to pee and suit up.

Then it was down to the water to get with my wave. As we started to gather I realized that our wave was kind of large. I then found out that they were grouping 30-39 together because they didn't feel as though our waves separately were large enough. Not for nothing, we looked large. Once they called us up, and the gun went off it was time to focus. We charged and began to swim and that was when the race started to fall apart for me.

I was in the thick of a bunch of people when all of a sudden I felt a blow to the side of my head. I lifted my head out of the water and saw stars. I felt like I had no idea where I was and I drank a few mouthfuls of salt water. When I snapped back into it I saw the girl who hit me and she was literally swimming with fists. I mean I get it, this is competitive and all, but swimming with fists and then nailing someone in the head, it's not that competitive.

Needless to say I couldn't quite get my bearings after that and it took me over half the swim to get into a rhythm. I got out of the water in 38:40 and off to T1 for a quick run up the beach and grabbed my bike in 3:07.

Then it was time to bike. I knew the bike route since I did it last year, so off I went. The beginning is relatively flat and I was maintaining a decent speed for the first 20 miles. And not to mention, it is quite scenic. After about 20 miles the climbing began and there went my average. As I began to climb I started to feel a bit fatigued but I kept on pushing. The problem was that at this time, it was hot, and I knew I wasn't going to PR. So what did I do? Well the obvious thing, I started to mentally go after myself. That is the worst! Anyone who knows racing, knows there is such a huge mental aspect that is part of it. And in order to succeed you need to stay positive, but for some reason I just couldn't do it. I began to doubt myself and my ability to finish the race.

Thankfully at around 40 miles, I gave myself a swift kick in the ass and told myself to just shut up and keep moving. The main issue with the bike, besides the internal mental battle was that I could not pee, no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't. I knew I had to, but it wasn't happening. But I also knew that as soon as I got off the bike and stood up I would have to. I pulled into T2 and racked my bike and that is when I remembered I had to pee and now I had to pee badly. I had already ran past all of the port-o-johns so I had to make a decision. Just pee in my pants or run back to the port-o-johns and waste time. So pee in my pants it was! The thought of wasting anymore time and adding on to my final time was just too much, so I said f*ck it and pee I did! I came in from the bike at 3:29:51 and a T2 of 2:43. Again, not happy but with the way I was feeling I could deal.

Run time! The game plan was to run the 13.1 at 10 beats higher than my average bike. So around 180, giving myself some extra for the hills. And by hills I mean mountains (or at least that is what they looked like to me)! I started off feeling great, knowing that this was the leg of the race that I knew best but as soon as the climbing began the high spirits exited the body. Every time I would try to climb I would suddenly feel the urge to vomit. So I decided that in order to survive the run without projectile vomiting everyone that I would just walk the hills.

By the time I hit the end of the first loop, it was all a matter of surviving. I am sure everyone has been there at some point, but this was the first time I ever felt like this while racing. I was literally counting down the miles, forcing myself to keep one foot in front of the other. Here is where the unnecessary purchases came in handy. I always make a deal with myself that if I buy something race related with the race name on it, I can't wear it unless I finish the race. And I had just bought a really nice sweatshirt the day before at the expo, so I knew in order to get any use out of it, I had to keep running.

To be honest, once I hit mile 9 I started to feel normal and no longer needed to walk. I came in from the run at 2:10:18, which was only 2 minutes slower than last year. I ran over the finish line and found the dog and boyfriend and man I was spent. I sat the grass and cried a little out of frustration. My final time was 6:24:38, 20 minutes slower than last year and the first race I haven't improved on. At the time it was a tough pill to swallow, but 2 days later I am over it and ready to move on to the next race!

The last two days have been all about relaxing and strategizing. I am definitely ready to try put this one behind me and try again. I am only going to learn from races like these.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Pre Race Jitters

So with Providence 70.3 two days away, my pre race jitters are at an all time high, while my confidence has swooped to quite a low. I really can’t remember, but I think I was a bit calmer last year at this time, but this year I keep worrying that I am not prepared. In reality I did a race that was a little shorter in length in May and I did fine, so I should really not be worried, but that is easier said than done. But enough on the negative let’s get to the positive!

Today I got up for my swim and was literally half asleep. Have you ever had that happen. I mean I don’t remember eating my breakfast before I left, but I know I did. But once I was in the pool I was feeling pretty good. Then I came home and started packing. I love to do this when no one is around in my house because it require a ton of talking to myself. I set up T1 and T2 in my living room and I walk myself through the race out loud. It goes a little something like, “I get out of the water, I take off my wetsuit, put on my socks, cleats…etc” and as I walk through the steps I point to what I need to put on. Odd? Maybe. Calming? Definitely!

So that is about all for me. I will hit the expo in the morning and then try and catch a movie in the afternoon and the on Sunday, it’s on! Wish me luck!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Countdown to Providence 70.3

Ok so it is a pretty short countdown considering the race is on Sunday! Here's to hoping I don't melt and because part of Brown University's campus streets. Heh! Ok, kidding aside, I really hope the heat dies down a bit.

In preparation for this weekends race I decided to do Saturday's ride and run a bit later to see if I could withstand the heat. Let me tell you, there were a few climbs where I thought I might die and one where I just wanted to get off the bike and take a quick cat nap to regain some energy, but I did it and got a nice sun burn while I was at it. The only thing is due to the heat by Z1/Z2 ride was more like a Z2/Z3/Z4/Z-almost pass out ride. There was no way with that heat that I would have any chance to be in Z1, so I just pushed on through!

After the ride, I stopped at home and threw on my running shorts and a visor and managed to somehow convince my boyfriend to come run with me for 30 minutes in 95 degree weather. As I left my apartment, I heard from the pool, "Wait now you are going running too?" to which I just shook my head and thought "I know, I know, you don't get it. Most people can't wrap their head around it. Sometimes I also fall into that category." and then off we went.

Now the run was supposed to be an easy 30 minute Z1 run. Well within the first few minutes something felt weird. On the bike I had drank 3.5 water bottles of watered down gatorade and I thought I was hydrated, well once I got out on the run, I realized that I didn't really feel like I was. I was slow and heavy and couldn't focus and my heart rate was up in Z3. So we proceed to do a nice 30 min walk/jog/walk pattern and oddly enough even though I felt like I was crawling, I did maintain a 10:10 pace. Which is slow for me in Z1, but still a lot faster than I thought it was.

The rest of weekend went like this: work out, bbq, pool, workout, cocktails, bbq, in bed early. And I have to say it was a great weekend. Then I headed into quite a busy 4 day work week.

I have had two days of non-stop conference calls followed by some late night work outs. I feel like lately with the 102 degree weather, you can only get a decent run in after 9pm so that has been my life. I got up nice and early this morning for a 30 min steady swim, where the first 800 dragged on as if I had never swam before and I had to make sure to pick it up on the 2nd.

Tonight I have a ride and T run and I decided in order to keep myself motivated that I would leave my clothes at the gym. Kinda like dropping an anchor somewhere, so I have to go back and pick it up in order to move onto my work out tomorrow.

Then I begin a bit of a taper and get ready for Providence. I am not quite sure how I feel about the race yet, so I will save those thoughts for tomorrow. Now I am off to eat some cottage cheese and fruit.