Tuesday, July 26, 2011

New Jersey State Tri Race Report

This past weekend was the NJ State Olympic Triathlon with the current heatwave, I was not sure how to feel about this one. I took it easy on Friday night and then woke up nice and early on Saturday to begin eating and to set out on 5 hours worth of errands. Once I was done running around, I continued to eat and get all of my gear ready. As I mentioned this was the first race I was going to have to go to alone, well it turns out I have one of the best support systems out there. As soon as my best friend heard I would be going alone, she decided she had a hankering to drive down to Princeton, sleep in a hotel and get up an an ungodly hour to hang out. She would be my athletic supporter for the day and I couldn't have been more grateful.

We headed down to Princeton, ate at the hotel restaurant and then got to bed nice and early. And that was when I realized I had no race plan. Nothing to go by tomorrow when I got out of the water. Well after thinking about it and receiving some positive reinforcement for another fantastic friend and triathlete, I just said fuck it and went to bed. I mean with the 95 degree weather to worry about, who really cares about a race plan? Right?

We got up nice and early and drove over to the course, only to get lost 3 times and almost take down Bambi along the way. Once there, I got my race packet and headed to transition. So here is where the game changers came into play. As I was setting up my neighbor let me know not to unpack my wetsuit, the lake was 88 degrees, so we wouldn't be using them. I mean 88 degrees, that is actually disgusting! Oh well, nothing I could do about that one, so I continued to get ready. After my transition area was set, I put on my Garmin and even though it was at 100% battery life this morning, it was now dead. Ok, so no Garmin another thing I could do nothing about. So there it was, I was racing, no wetsuit for the first time, no Garmin for the first time and no race plan for the first time. And that is when it hit me, no restrictions meant I could just have fun! And so it was off to the start.

We got in the water and it was definitely 88 degrees, no lying there. It was so hot it made wearing a bathing cap uncomfy. As we swam you would hit incredibly cold spots and then really hot spots in the water. So it made for an interesting swim. Once out of the water, I started to think it might have been better to stay in, the humidity was out of control, it was like you ran up the dock and hit a wall of heat. Oh well, into T1 and get on that bike before it gets too hot!

The bike course was nice and flat. It had a few tiny climbs but nothing too bad. With no Garmin I just kept an eye on my speed the entire time and made sure to keep a high cadence and went by how I felt. By the time I hit the end of our second lap, I felt like I could ride forever. I headed back into the park with what looked like a negative split and was happy about my ride.

I got off the bike and my legs felt fantastic. I ran into T2 switched shoes and then it was off to run. By this time the temp had risen about 10 degrees and humidity was noticeably worse. I just told myself I would run based on how I felt, no walking, but I could slow down if need be. I started out at a decent pace, but by mile one the stomach cramps were back, oh well, I thought, just deal it is only 6.2 miles. By mile 3 I was feeling better, both physically and mentally, but also ready to get going because the sun was coming out and it wasn't being shy. I hit the 4 mile turn around and I felt great, then it was just a quick 2 miles to the finish. Around 5.5 miles I passed a guy and he muttered "take me home" as I ran by, so I said sure let's go and now I had a running buddy. Once we hit the finishing chute this guy seemed to be on fire, and then he pulled me the last .2 and there it was, we were done. Just as the temperature began to climb through the 90's I could change and get into the air conditioning!

Once changed, I checked my time, it certainly wasn't my best, but it was good enough for me:

Swim 30:36 (only 2 min off my last Olympic with a wet suit, so not so bad)
T1: 2:26 (not bad considering it included a decent run)
Bike: 1:20:56 average speed of 18.9 (I'll take it!)
T2: 1:52
Run: 55:25 8:56 pace (this is where I lost it a little, but hey it was hot, so I dealt)


Like I said not my best time, but with all the things going against me I am very happy with it. And I had a great time.

Now I have a few things I need to sit down and think about in terms of triathlon, along with finding another race or two for this year, I mean it can't be over yet!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Holy Heat Wave!

Seriously how hot and humid can it get? Ok maybe that was a bad question to ask, since I think it is only going to get worse. But jesus cristo! I am not a huge fan of working out in the heat and with my race only a few days away it needs to cool down a bit. And by a bit I mean preferably like 20 degrees, although that most likely will not happen, so maybe 10 or so I could deal with.

For example, I just got back from a 20 min ZR T run, and you would think that should have been easy. Holy crap it was not. I am soaked with sweat, and for the first time this season I brought the walk/run back. My heart rate was soaring and all I could was walk to get it down. So that is just what I did. Only to return to find out I average 11:10 min/miles. Easy there speedy!!

I am mentally preparing for my race this weekend. It should be a fun time, but it is the first race this season I am going to by myself. And we all know what happened the last time I went to a race by myself! Ok I won't go there, but I can't say it isn't in the back of my mind. (I hope I didn't just jinx myself!) I think I am going to go head down on Saturday night and stay at a local hotel. I just really like not having to travel in the morning and the race is about 1:20 away from home. It is only an Olympic tri so while it will be challenging it shouldn't be too hard. And get this, for the first time I think I actually may have picked a flat course! Unheard of for me, I know, but I think I did it. But I did pick, what people say is the one of the hottest tri's around here. Oh well, can't win them all.

So this week has so far been filled with spin classes and some recovery rides and runs. I am interested to see with over a month from my last race, how I do at this one. Tonight I am going to head to the pool for my Mini Monster set and then hide in the house away from the heat.

Other than that, life is just the same old shit! Well stay cool and I will be back again tomorrow hopefully with faster run times and lower temperatures to report.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Are We There Yet?

That seems to have been all that has been running through my head this week. Just trying to get to Friday. Then I remembered that I had committed to subbing a 6am Spin class this morning, doh! Oh well, it got me up and doing things nice and early.

I got in a 45 spin, some swimming and grocery shopping all before 9am. I just finished breakfast and I am about to head back to the gym for a 1 hour Z1 run. I seem to be at a bit of a plateau with my Z1 pace. I am hovering in between 9:15 and 9:27 min miles and I am not sure why I can't get any faster. I feel like in the beginning of my training my pace got a lot faster in a short period of time, and now I am at a bit of a standstill. We will see what today will bring.

As for the weekend, I have a long ride and T run tomorrow followed by a bridal shower for a friend of mine. Then on Sunday a quick ride and then 1:15 Z1 run, engagement photos and then the final World Cup game! This weekend is all about athletics. Next week I head out for my last scheduled tri of the season. I still want to attempt to squeeze in one more sprint and one my half ironman, but with all of the weddings and wedding planning we have, I am starting to think I may not be able to do it. I would really like to do the half in September in Atlantic City, so that is my goal.

Now I just need to get in this last run for the week so I can relax a bit. Have a great weekend everyone!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I Feel Refreshed, Although Not Totally Refocused

After a weekend of hanging out with 3 amazing women and acting more like men than women, I am feeling totally refreshed. Sometimes you just need a little time around those who remind you of who you are and make you feel at home. I am not saying that I don't have wonderful friends in my current city but sometimes it is nice to hang out with old friends, people that have known you for longer than your tenure in your current town. Now, in looking at how we entertained ourselves all weekend it maybe wasn't the best thing for my body, while feeling refreshed, I now need to refocus.

Sunday after everyone left I took the day to relax and watch some TV. When it came to Sunday night I figured I would just pass out, but in came the insomnia I usually face on Sunday night. I woke up on Monday at 5:20am to teach class and felt anything but refreshed. I taught class and managed to get in a decent ride on Monday, only to be faced with the same insomnia on Monday night. It seems the stress of not being able to focus on my fitness, my job and my upcoming wedding may be effecting my sleep patterns.

Today I decided to let myself sleep in and to push the morning workout until later in the day. Sleeping in was great, but as I got on my bike for my 2 hour Z1 ride, I again lacked all motivation. But I forced myself to finish coming in at the top of Z1 as prescribed. But really I hate those kind of workouts, because all I seem to be able to focus on is getting off the bike and being done. But I did it, so at least it is done!

Tonight I have to teach and then I am hoping to finally get a good night's sleep. Tomorrow I have a 45 min swim and a 1 hour Zone 1 run so I will need to feel at least a little rested.

So now that I had my dose of fun for the month it is time to start focusing on the New Jersey Tri I will be racing in 2 weeks. Off to rest before class!

Friday, July 8, 2011

I Made It!

And by that I mean I made it to Friday and managed to also finish up all my workouts! After I went into the office on Thursday I came home for a 55 min Z1 run. Now I was supposed to do this on Wednesday, but my stomach did not agree with my plans. I was so sick all day on Wednesday that I managed to spend the entire second half of the day in bed with my lap top. I got to bed early and slept through my normal morning work out time and figured I would play catch up when I felt better.

After a day at the office on Thursday, I figured I would give it a try. Well having been sick on Wednesday, I was very dehydrated and you could see it in my pace. I was averaging 9:40 min/miles and feeling overheated and tired. When I got home I refueled and then forced myself to get on my bike for a 1:45 Z1 trainer ride. Now I am not sure if it was better because I was sitting down but this half of the work out was bearable. After the bike, I sat down for a fresh tomato and cucumber salad and some chicken sausage then passed out.

When I got up this morning I was a little skeptical about my 55 min Z1 run since yesterdays was a bit of a fluke. But I was back today. I ran 55 min at 9:15 min/miles and I felt great. I then came home and got to work and then hit the pool for an 800 TT on my lunch break. I swam a 15:13 800 and then headed back to the house to get back to work.

Now I am just finishing up my work day and anticipating my night. I am heading to the train station to pick up Kim tonight and then heading to our friend Beth's for some cocktails before we head out to Grand Central Oyster Bar for some seafood and drinks! This weekend couldn't have come at a better time for everyone! We are all ready to get out and have some fun. Oh, and also work out in the mornings before the fun, of course!

I hope everyone has a great weekend! And if you are located in or around New York City, look out for us!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

All Worked Out

That is exactly how I feel, just all worked out. Man I have hit my workout slump and it is hitting me hard! I mean I can still get myself to get on on my bike on my trainer and ride my prescribed times, but when it comes to things like T runs and swimming, I am just lacking the motivation. Not saying that they don't happen, it just takes a ton of effort. And then when I start things like runs, my brain starts to negotiate the amount of time I actually have to do in order to feel like I completed the work out. Uh, maybe the entire time? Yes, that is obvious once I do it, but when I start my brain starts looking for my body's way out!

Does this ever happen to anyone else? I fell like it is usually right around 7 months into training that it starts and I need to find a way out of my funk before it takes over! Maybe my race in two weeks will do it? Who knows!

In terms of work outs, this week I have done a 1:40 ZR/Z1 ride, which I think ended up mostly in Z1 because my heart rate was off most likely due to dehydration from this weekend's activities (hey you gotta have a little fun with this stuff!). Then I got in the pool before class for 2 x 800s on TT+10 pace, and those, while doable, did end up hurting a bit. Then I did a quick 45 min class and came home and crashed. Today I believe calls for another Z1 bike ride and a Z1 55min run which I think I have Nick convinced to do with me, so that should keep me going.

One thing I am looking forward to is this weekend. This weekend we have a fun-filled girl's weekend planned. I will be hanging with 3 fantastic people with whom I always end up having a great time. Now I just need to work my way to the weekend and get these workouts done! I CAN DOOOOO IIIIIT!