Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Lunchtime Run across a piece of Cleveland's History

Many days when I can sneak out at lunch, I take the opportunity to run with a group of guys and ESpeed (when she can get out).  Now these runs are always interesting.  There are few boundaries for where the conversation may go, lots of trash talk and most often the runs have some sort of theme.  There also seems to be a flare for runs surrounding Cleveland history and running in the most ghetto of neighborhoods.  It seems the more uneasy it would make the common person, the more these guys seem to like the route.  They are rather tough looking with their long lean bodies! ;-)  Also, I always try to make sure when I go on these runs that I will be able to keep up with the average pace which will generally range from 7:30-8:10 over the duration of 7-9 miles because I never like the idea of running by myself through most the neighborhoods!

Today's run was a new one for me which I found rather interesting.  We ran out Payne to E70th along some random side streets and made our way to run across the historical League Park.  This was new to me!  The only thing that really remained was the ticket booth.  We stopped for a minute to check out the historical marker.

League Park, located at E66th and Lexington, opened in 1891 and was once home to the Cleveland Spiders which sat 9000 on wooden seats at that time.  The stadium was rebuilt in 1910 and the Cleveland Indians played there until 1947 when they moved to the Cleveland Stadium full-time.  Also of note, Babe Ruth hit his final home run there in 1929!  I learn something new about my city all the time and who knew this would be thanks to one of my lunch runs.  Very cool to run across a piece of history, yet strange to see how it sits vacant in a run-down part of the city.

Who knows what I will discover on my next lunch run...  :-)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The numbers

So after enjoying one solid week post 140.6 of eating and being lazy, last week I started to ease back into some sort of training.  However last week the plan was to still go light on the running and still only do what I felt like.

Monday-60 min performance cycle, 2000 m swam
Tuesday- ??  can't recall so I am guessing I took it off
Wednesday-60 min spin, 2000 m swim, 9 mi run at lunch (8:10 pace)
Thursday- 45 min interval ride, 1 mile run
Friday-2100 m swim
Saturday- 7.5 miles ran (6.3@6:38)
Sunday- 75 miles road with CV & MV

Run-17.5 mi
Biked-127 mi
Swam 6100 meters

This morning I was looking at my garmin data from my relay leg at Akron.
Distance: 6.3 mi
Total Time:  41:48
Avg Pace: 6:38
Average HR 179
Max HR 186
Elevation Gain 112
Elevation Loss 348
Miles:  6:31, 6:10 (big downhill), 6:20, 6:43, 6:57, 7:04 pace for 0.3  - Those last couple miles felt way slower than that.

The plan-I don't really have a set plan for the next couple months which I am excited about!!!  I think I would like to try to work on my running speed a bit and just do some halfs and shorter races.  Then I plan to transition to trail running when temps cool as trails just keep me warmer and will likely plan on Run for Regis 50k as having that on the calendar seems to keep me motivated.  I plan to do more weight training and core work as I always have enjoyed that.  Hopefully I can still ride my mtn bike some but all this stupid rain just has a lot of the trails quite wet at this point.  I also plan to continue to get in a fair amount of riding but there will not be too much structure there until starting in December. Starting soon I plan to really focus on my swimming this winter which is my big goal to work on this winter.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Running the Bird update!

:-(  Monday already!  Fun weekends always go by WAAAY 2 fast and this one was quite fun!

Friday, hit the Akron Marathon expo and the Spaghetti Warehouse for dinner with some family and friends.  We hit the hay and woke up BEFORE the crack of dawn to make our way down to Akron Marathon.  I live nearly an hour away so we left home at 4:50 because I wanted to be parked no later than 6 and road closures and one way streets always make parking where I want interesting!

Before we knew it,we were all meeting up and I was super stoked about the day.  My best friend from high school was running on my sister's relay team so the two of us walked over to the third relay exchange point together.  Good thing I found someone with a map as of course I thought I knew where I was going and realized I was wrong.  It is amazing just how quickly time flew by that morning because by the time I got to the place I needed to be, I was rushing to get in my warm-up as I wanted to be sure I was ready when super star ESpeed came through as she was running our team's First and Second legs.

She came through mile 9.3 around 1:01 even after a stop at a POP!  Super awesome effort given a sour stomach and coming back from injury!   I grabbed our snap bracelet and took off.  I could see one local running star ahead of me and a pink relay team.  I was not really closing the gap much but not losing any ground either.

It has been a long time since I asked my legs to go fast for 6+ miles and was not sure how they would respond after all this long course training.  Yet, as our team tried to figure out best and worst case times, I figured a pretty realistic guess was I would run 6:40's.

My leg had a fair amount of downhill to get going and I was feeling pretty good.  I had opted for headphones and was just zoned into the music and totally zoned out to everything around me.  I would say that within 2 miles I was just hoping I could maintain without blow up.

There was one lady that had passed me within the first half mile.  I kept within a couple steps of her throughout the downhill grade sections.  She was also on a relay team and I was hoping I would not lose us another spot.  As we transitioned onto the towpath which we would run for about 4 miles, I stayed right in behind her.  However, it was not long before I decided I wanted to run my own race and surged ahead of her pretty hard, wondering if I would pay for that later and if she would pass me later.  There were not really many spectators in the towpath area and I was in the abyss of mission keep-it-together.  I was half way done and hurting.  I refused to look at my garmin pretty much the entire race.  I knew with the downhill start, I was likely to go out fast and did not want that pace to scare me and also I did not want to see the slow down once I got on level ground.

Akron really does a nice job  with even the little things.  As I ran along the towpath, there were lots of official motivational signs along the way.  I read them all and looked forward to seeing what the next one would say.  I kept looking around the corners still keeping pink relay girl and local fast chick in sight.  Dang, here I am hurting and local fast chick is running the whole thing at this pace...OUCH!  Finally I saw mile 15 and knew that meant a half a mile left.

At this point, the chick I had passed at the beginning of the towpath surged.  I was sucking air in a major way (and really should have hit my inhaler before the race) and had nothing left to answer back with.  We made a left onto the road and started into an uphill grade.  I was DYING and HURTING very bad and my pace now felt soooo slow!  And out of the abyss, I saw the only spectator of the day in my fog.  I see my friend Amie with her shirt up over her pregnant belly jumping up and down and screaming.  I found a smile and the energy to wave and dragged my weary butt up where I finally saw the relay exchange zone and BH ready to put an end to my misery.  I passed off my bracelet and walked trying to catch my breath!

Ouch, that hurt but tried to push for my teammates.  I ended up running 41:52 for the 6.3 miles which worked out to a 6:38 average.  BH took off for her 2.8 mile leg which is the most uphill leg of the relay.  I lucked out that BH's mom was there and I took her up on a ride back in lieu of running the ~5 miles back.  My toes hurt pretty bad.  It was no surprise to take my left sock off and see that it was all red.  The downhill grade likely contributed to that.

As I got back, I grabbed a change of clothes and headed into the stadium to watch the finishers and grab my food and free beer!  SCORE!  Then I headed down to my normal spectating spot to where all the finishers had to walk by.  It was not long before I saw my teammate Salty, fresh in from her butt kicking relay leg.

Team Four Freaky Fast Females came in 3rd overall women's team (behind 1st 2:51:35 and second 2:53:34) with a time of 2:53:27 averaging 6:38 min miles!  It is super fabulous when 4 of us can all work together to contribute to a very respectable finish!  We even came in ahead of where I thought we would!!!

Then it was time for some fun!  We sat down at the stadium for awhile congratulating friends as we watched them come in before heading over to continue having more fun at a local establishment for some real food.

I was also super excited for my sister and her team.  She shaved 5 minutes off her 7.9 mile relay leg time from last year and their team with my cousin, high school friends, sis and her husband came in with a 3:51:25!  HUGE!

So it was another super fun day hanging with some of my favorite people!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Random Wednesday Thoughts

1.  I am super doooper excited for the weekend.  Team Four Freaky Fast Females will be out partying it up after the Akron Marathon race.  Hard to tell how fast we will go this year.  Needless to say I am assuming we will make up for any speed shortcomings with the fun factor!  This year the line up is ESpeed running legs 1&2, yous truly on leg 3, Perservance tackling Sand Run on leg 4 and then Salty bringing us home!  I am not sure where we will come in at but I am guessing somewhere between 2:55 and 3:10 so say hi if ya see us!

For fun comparisons, here are our past year's results!
2010, 2nd place women's team - 2:52:03
2009, 3rd place women's team -3:06:38
2008, 2nd place women's team - 3:05:30
2007, 2nd place women's team - 3:02:47

Every year, it seems things we girls get switched around a bit based on availability, injury, schedules, etc but it has been an AWESOME TIME every year!

2.  Another reason I am excited for the weekend is my sister is running on a relay team with good friends, Nathan & Lindsay.  Also my sister's husband will also do his first running event with a leg of their relay (I think as poor guy has been sick for a month!).  Rounding it out will be my cousin, ST, doing her first running event!  Oh and I should mention there will be a fun Friday dinner and Saturday party surrounding the fun run with all of us!!!!

3. Feeling really torn on my racing plan for next year at the moment.  Still scratching my head on it.  I always feel like I need to set my plan early.  I also like to keep it fresh.  I don't want to get bored doing all the same things.  Also, likely I will need to keep my travel schedule something reasonable.  Anyone doing anything fun? I thought about some halfs or maybe some xterra tris?  I am still leaning towards TTT and REV3 CP again pretty strongly.  Not signing up for any full official full IMs this year so those are out too for 2012.

4.  A friend just dropped off my winnings from REV3 Cedar Point. I must say I was pretty excited about it!  It included an Avia watebottle, a FuelBelt, TYR goggles and a very nice REV3 award!  Love it!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Recovery Week!

The only caveats to the week post 140.6.

Do only what I want.  No running.

And it was an awesome week!

Monday, I took the day completely off and ate a lot!

Tuesday, 20 min ez spin on stationary bike at gym

Wednesday, off

Thursday, 1000 M Swim

Friday, P90x Chest and Back

Saturday- Rode 14 miles on MTB at West Branch mountain bike trails with ET!

Sunday- P90x, shoulders, bis. tris.  Rode 14 miles very easy with family on Portage Hike and Bike from Ravenna to Kent and back on park bike.

Some notes-
I had met with my coach Wednesday and talked through some stuff.  A lot of emphasis was placed on waiting to run much.  So despite wanting to run over the weekend and not feeling too bad, I decided I would wait to run until something short and easy late this week before I run my lil Akron Mary Relay leg on Saturday.

All and all, I feel pretty good.  Main soreness left Thursday.  My toes on the outsides of my feet seem like they lost a little feeling for now.  My tibial nerve feels a little tingly at times so I have a proactive ART appt set up for Thursday.

I really enjoyed the weekend.  Weather was gorgeous.  I had really missed mtn biking and ET and I had a blast out riding the trails at West Branch.  She was doing a practice ride for the West Branch MTB enduro which was Sunday.  I SOOO wanted to do it too bc WB is my home turf, yet a 4+ hour mtn bike race seemed like it would be a giant middle finger to my legs after last weekend so I behaved :-(  All good, at least ET was female winner!

Sunday, was sooo nice.  My aunt and uncle have really gotten into biking and my mom has been wanting to get riding.  We had got mom's bike all set up last year but she really had not rode much ever.  So we had set Sunday up as the day to show my mom the ropes awhile back.  As luck would have it, Sunday was a gorgeous day to ride.  The 3 of them and my husband and I met up in Ravenna for a roll out to Kent on the Portage Hike and Bike path.  We did a lunch stop at Rays Place in Kent in the middle and I likely consumed more calories than I burned on the ride, but it was a really nice change of pace! Mom did very well and managed just over 14 miles while the husband and I played hooligans on our park bikes throughout the day.  Super fun!

You may note the P90x sessions above.  I have decided to start to re-integrate some weight training back in the program.  I used to do this a lot but haven't lifted AT ALL since my crash.  Probably one of my longest hiatuses in years.  After Friday's session, I did not think I did a very good job as I was not sore....but that all changed Saturday and especially Sunday!  OUCH!  Time to strengthen that core!

Today, I decided to start my return to normalcy with workouts (albeit that they may be a little different) while still taking some caution to allow for recovery.  Can't just keep eating like IM training and not workout!!!  Hit 6AM performance cycle this morning with KM at LFT.  Good stuff and felt great to finally work up my first solid sweat in a week!  Then it was back to 2000 m in the pool.  Actually feeling ready to go today!

Plan for immediate future is Akron Marathon relay (6.3 mi leg) Saturday.  Debating the Border War Sprint Tri for Sunday but not sure I want to do two back to back hard efforts this weekend.  TBD.  Other than that, I had toyed with idea of Towpath Mary if I felt good but it just seems too close and after talking with Coach MG, I have decided to take a pass on that.  I am thinking perhaps some shorter fall running races for fun!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

REV3 Cedar Point Race Report

Where to start?  We will skip right to the race and circle back later with everything else.

Race morning- Woke up at 5AM and started the process.  Make coffee, eat banana, bagel, hard boiled eggs.  Race mornings go by so quickly.  By the time I dropped my bags off, there was not much down time to relax before I made my way down to the swim.

Swim:  Upon getting to the beach around 6:45, I had the opportunity to get into the water which was nice and made me feel more relaxed than last year.  I was also probably feeling more relaxed as I did not the race chip ordeal from the prior year.  The race had a slight delay (about 12 minutes on my watch) as the pro men and pro women got going.  I was thankful for that as my goggles were a bit dark and I had been nervous that it would be too dark to sight well.  (Mental note:  next time bring clear and darker goggles.)

Lake Erie had had pretty rough waters a lot of the week with a lot of storms blowing in which led to a very thick deep sludge which had developed as you entered the water.  It was sticky, slimy and muddy but who cared because race day, that lake was calm!!!  I lined up probably 2/3 of the field back and far left.  I kept saying,"I hate the swim and couldn't wait for it to be over with" to TR between saying sarcastically that "I love the swim".

As the siren went off, I took my time getting going.  No panic attack.  It still feels very chaotic to start with so many people.  I got clobbered pretty good at one point as we made our way out to the far red turn buoy.  He knew he got me good because he apologized as I regrouped.  Then after the first red buoy turn, another guy was swimming alongside me.  He scratched me twice with his finger nails.  (Definitely was not surprised to see my hand bleeding when I got out of the water.)  As we came around for the first loop, I took advantage of the time to walk a bit and conserve my energy before heading back out for loop two.  I would say my swim was so-so.  It was steady, but not a great rhythm and there is always plenty of room for improvement.  I focused only on staying relaxed.  It seemed like I was swimming for an eternity.  Finally, I made my way to the beach!  

Goal time 1:20.  Actual time 1:22:15.  Not bad and I was happy with that.  (Beat last year's time by 5 minutes)  Take that scapula with my subpar swimming efforts this summer.

Transitions:  Both were pretty uneventful.  No clothing changes.  I think I really tried rushing through transitions but did not do that great of a job.  I probably should have taken a little more care to wipe the sand from my feet. 

T1:  3:27
T2:  3:36

Bike:  As I went out on the bike course I thought something was making a strange noise and it had me concerned.  With no clue what it was, I tried to push it out of my head.  It took me a little while to get my heart rate down those first 5 miles or so.  Last year on the bike my HR averaged 150 and when I hit 160 you could tell I backed off the effort.  This year I focused on letting my HR drift up to 163 but always taking care to try to keep in mid 150's.  I watched my HR and speed (trying to stay over 20) like a hawk for pretty much the entire bike.  Every 10 minutes I tried to make sure I was getting in nutrition.  I would say on the bike I was very focused on the task at hand.  

The bike course has a last minute change so I just rolled with it and took comfort that I knew the bulk of the course quite well.  As I was totally focused on the task at hand, the miles clicked by on the bike and I felt very good.  I really just looked forward to the time when I knew I would see the ironfan crew which would be mile 26, 60 and 90ish.  Truly, I looked forward to this more than people may realize.  They were so loud and it just gave me extra strength! 

The wind was not much of a factor on this day although on the bike you do always notice it as some points.  My seat area seemed to fare better than some days and the main issue I was dealing with was that my right ball of my foot felt like there was a hot spot but more than anything my feet were just feeling bruised from pushing down the pedals.  I was really thinking that bruised foot feeling was going to make the run hurt!!!

The other point to note was special needs was at approximately mile 50 and then 80 something. At mile 50 I swapped out my two bottles but one FE EFS bottle was almost entirely full so clearly I was not drinking enough.  I also had a fair amount left on my bike at the end of the day in one of my bottles too.  This would be probably my biggest mistake of the day.  I was taking in a lot of water and finished both liquid shot flasks but apparently I was not drinking enough from my bottles.  (Perhaps next time, clear bottles that are marked with lines??)

So finally, I made my way back into the park.  I was super pleased that I was still on pace to get the sub-11 I was targetting.  

And I got off the bike feeling even better than last year!  I was sore with some tight hammies but moving better through transition than last year!

The volunteer at the changing tent was great.  She put my garmin and race belt on for me and got me moving.

Automatically my little sore legs were turning over sub 8 minute miles and I kept slowing myself down.  I knew if I could just hold under 9 minute mile pace, I would get my goal.  

First 4.4 miles, 8:38 pace.

I passed another lady who let me know I was in second or third place.  I really did not know how that was possible.  I said there must be more up ahead.  It was good to see to SSSMT out on the bike and run course who also encouraged me as I was mentally trying to prepare myself for all the miles ahead.

I was carrying my handheld and a FE Liquid Shot flask.  My handheld somehow had a broken lid which led to me losing a lot of water at some points.  It did not take long, I would say just over 4 miles and I could feel twinges in my legs as if they could cramp at any point.  My left quad felt particularly on edge, but so did my hanstrings and calves.  SOOO NOT GOOD!

I stopped once to take off my shoe and readjust my sock just after 4 miles or so.  I figured it was worth a little time now to avoid horrible pain later.  It still felt like blisters were coming on my poor little feet which hurt pretty good already.  I was just over 4 miles in and already thinking this was going to be a long marathon!  Crap!

But, the fan crew was out there cheering me on so I tried to suck it up for them.  It felt soooo hot and there was very little shade.  I must have repeated, "you are tougher than you think you are and can do more than you think you can" 100 times sandwiched between "one foot in front of the other".  

The day before the race I wrote, "Don't drown, don't crash and don't walk" on my twitter page.  As I slowly jogged along I would not allow myself to walk and just knew it would hurt regardless and might as well get done faster!  There were a couple points when I thought, "oh no the quad is about to seize" but my slow shuffle gate seemed to keep the cramps at bay.  

I was totally kicking myself for not taking in more electrolytes on the bike.  Yet, I have had more issues with tight cramping legs a lot lately.  So maybe it is something more.  Oh and in case anyone wondered, I did pee in my wetsuit right at the start but never went again the entire race until well after at the hotel so apparently, I was quite dehydrated.

The one lady who went on to take first place amateur flew by me on the run.  I had seen her coming for awhile with all the out and backs and u-turns.  She had a good stride and one I could not match on this day.  I just tried to find something steady.  As we came within a little over 2 miles from the finish I saw another lady walk by me at the aid station.  I jogged along ahead of her and then she would run at a good clip and start walking.  We leap frogged a couple times.  Then I hit the little incline on the bridge with 1.5 miles to go and I kept a running gate moving ever sooo slowly.  The quad seized and then the right calf seized.  My leap frog lady rushed over to help me as I almost fell down as I let out a little yelp.  I have never had this happen so badly ever.  I stood up and encouraged her to go on.  I turned around and tried to walk backwards.  I was also trying to focus on my breathing as I got upset when this happened which triggered my asthma.  Thank goodness I was so close to the finish as I just kept telling myself it was only a little bit further.  I turned around and started walking forward as things loosened up a bit.  Then I started jogging again.  Espeed came on me and encouraged me to catch my friend ahead and said I had another female closing in.

I dug deep to keep moving hoping I would not have another terrible cramp.  I passed the lady in front of me who was surprised to see me but seemed set to walk it in.  Then with 0.5 miles to go, another lady passed me.  On this day, I knew I could not ask more of my legs without risking total shutdown so I let her go.  I closed in on one other female to see she was a pro.  There was no sense having to sprint ahead of her at the finish line since she had started way ahead of me so I just made my way into the finish line.

Run time:  4:16:16 (slower than my 2010- 4:15:03).  
Total time:  11:17:27 (clock reflects pro start time)

Overall, I ended up 10th overall female and 3rd overall amateur female.  I did not hit the goal of sub 11 due to my run which I know I should be capable of (which I think was due to my poor nutrition intake).  Next time!  For now, I am very proud to have come back from my bicycle crash 13 weeks ago and to do it with a 140.6 PR of nearly 21 minutes.  

This was only my second 140.6 and the training was FAR from perfect.  As much as I wonder why I do this for fun (as I dig deep on the race course), I just can't help but finish and think what I can do better for next time.  

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Two for Thursday?---

As made popular by the Leadville 100,

"You are tougher than you think you are, and you can do more than you think you can."

When I am tired on Sunday, I will say this to myself and hopefully find a way to dig deep to achieve my goals.

In less than 3 whole days I will be toeing the start line of my second 140.6 race.  Yes, the first one was very special.  I followed coach's plan and I had every confidence in my training that I could do it.  I was incredibly nervous about what if I could feel my tibia stress fracture return on the run.  Yet, everything fell into place and I was stoked to not only finish my first full feeling relatively good, but to break my goal of 12 hours with a 11:38.

This year the ride has been more bumpy.  On 6/14, I had suffered a bad bicycle crash where I fractured my shoulder blade, bruised my ribs badly and had a lot of road rash.  After spending a long night at the hospital, I walked out the door and the tears started falling down my face.

I was heartbroken.  Not only did I physically hurt badly, I was truly upset that I was not sure if there would be any more triathlons for me in 2012.  I love working out.  I did not know when I would be able to resume that which was now such a big part of my life.  I left the hospital to listen to a voicemail that had already come through from coach early that morning who had heard what happened, saying to stay strong and we could work through it.

Those first few days, I avoided some phone calls and was just rather down about it all.  I was dying to get back to it but simple clothing changes and showers were hard enough that first week.  The road rash was painful and required lots of dressing changes.  However, after 9 days I could take no more and I started running slowly on the treadmill, taking great caution not to move my left wing (as that brought on lots of pain.).  I also started riding indoors.

My friend, DM, brought over his computrainer for me to borrow as riding outside would be difficult for awhile.  I started working into some hard efforts on the bike over time with some very uncomfy ribs as I breathed in hard.

Slowly strength started to return to my shoulder and I noticed it start to move freely on its own while I ran.  Then I started back out onto the roads on the bike.  Many of those rides back felt rough, like I had just fell behind while I was down.  It was frustrating to feel like I could not keep up with folks that I was accustomed to riding with.  Yet, what could I do but be thankful I was back riding outside!  :-)

Swimming was the last thing that I was able to do again.  As swimming was never my strong suit, I am not sure I lost too much here despite my VERY limited swim training this summer.

My shoulder still is not right.  I was shocked when I saw my 6 week xray with such a visible separation.  I had been very nervous about it holding up to a 2.4 mi swim but the 1.8 mi open water swim gave me the much needed confidence boost I needed.  It may not be healed and still be sticking out a bit, but I am certain it will be fine for this swim....perhaps not great but like my swim ever is!  (this will be a goal to make this a different story!)

It has been 12 weeks since I crashed and this week I will be lining up to race a 140.6.  The progress has been all that I could hope for.  Frankly, I am just happy to have reached the starting line in this form.  There have been plenty of rough days during this round of IM training.  And just no matter what happens Sunday, I am just thankful to get the opportunity to do REV3 Cedar Point!

A Special Thanks to-
-Coach MG for all the workouts and guidance
-DM for letting me borrow his CT
-My training partners which make all the long days better (Espeed, ET, CV BH and the rest of the BAFF team and sis who was there when I was just finding my run again and LOTS of others!)
-Trakkers/REV3 team for all the connections and wonderful sponsor products
-And especially my husband for all of his support!

Thinking through my nutrition plan out loud!

So tonight I am packing. I always like to pack an entire night before I am set to leave so I can spend the next entire day trying to figure out if I am missing anything.

As most who are probably doing the race, I continue to keep an eye on the weather.  Today it says a low of 64 and a high of 74, with a 8mph south wind, and 40% chance of scattered t-storms.  Temps and wind look favorable so let's hope those two factors hold true and I would prefer to eliminate any chance of storms please!

Regardless, it looks like temps will be favorable to again (like last year) just stay in my Trakkers / REV3 kit for the entire race.  I find it much easier to not have to bother changing!  I had been a bit concerned when the lows looked a little lower but I should be good.  Of course I will pack some warmer clothes for special needs, just in case!

As usual, I am also making my grocery list in addition to my packing list.  Our room at breakers has a coffee maker but I am guessing it is one of those single serving types so I am bringing my coffee maker and my toaster! I really liked knowing last year that my breakfast would be what I wanted.

Every race I sit down and make sure I am clear on the plan so I figured it would be good to jot it down for quick reference for myself and in case anyone was interested.

So the plan is-

Breakfast (as early as I can wake up, ideally 4 am but likely 5) (500 calories):  1 bagel with PB (250 cal), 2 hard boiled egg (150 cal), 1 banana (100 cal), water and coffee.

Between breakfast and race:  Sip on bottle of First Endurance EFS mixed with FE PreRace (200 cal)

Swim:  Nothing


Bike:  Will have water up front in aerobottle and start with two bottle of FE EFS bottles in cages with 2 scoops product in each bottle in cages and one liquid shot flask.  At bike special needs, 2 more efs bottles, 1 liquid shot flask and one snickers bar!!!

Goal on bike is ~300 calories per hour.  Planning on under 6 hours so planning on 1800 calories.
-4 bottles of FE EFS (@200 cal each), 800 cal total
-2 FE liquid shot flasks (@400 cal each). 800 cal total
-1 snickers at half way, 200 cal total

Plan is to settle on bike for first 10 minutes.  Starting at 10 minutes, every 10 minutes alternate 1 sip (2-3 oz) of EFS Drink / 2oz liquid shot followed by water.

Run:  Will run with handheld (I think as it worked great last year to drink when I wanted).  Goal is 150-200 cal per hour.  Goal is under 4 hours so I total need of 800 calories.  So plan is easy.  Water and 2-400 calories liquid shot flasks.  Carry one and then pickup one at half way.  Take in coke on course if desired.

This is pretty much to a tee what I did that last year and it worked well then so I would assume it should work again this year!

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Race Week!

And it is Tuesday  Wednesday already!  Apparently the day got away from me yesterday!

Back to the grind and I have started thinking about all the little things regarding the big race this weekend.

I am back to work after 3 days off work and 3 great workouts.  It seems weird to be in taper and still be working out so much but this week will be very easy.  Planning to swim most days some and I just have one more short brick (20/2) which I will probably do Wednesday.

Saturday was a 36 mile ride with 3x15 min hard intervals.  Luckily, I had BH along for the ride and those miles clicked right by.  Then it was on to 6x1 mile repeats running.  Last week, I fell apart on my repeats as it was soo hot at the track.  This week it was even hotter so I opted to go inside and run them on the treadmill.  I was stoked to run them all at or below desired pace relatively easily.

Sunday, I rode with my coach which was so awesome.  It gives me the chance to pick his brain and he gave me several tips.  Riding with Coach also provides extra motivation to work hard throughout the workout as I want him to see that I have strong work ethic and take his direction seriously. Coach sent me some data after the ride-

"We went just under 45, erred on the side of caution and called it a day a little bit early. We rode the warm-up and main set as follows
37.75 miles
1:53:00  20.0 avg
avg power: 200
NP-236 watts
cool down was almost 7 easy miles so overall our ride avg was just over 19
Power data
We did one out and back interval of ~18 miles. We each took a 1.5 mile pull section up front and switched back and forth.
Time : 48:30
Distance:  just under 18 miles
Avg Speed: 22.0
Avg Power: 236 watts
Max Power: 748 watts
NP: 249 watts
After a brief 4ish mile break we did a ~6 mile out and back with each of us taking a ~3 mile pull.  Data
Coach pull
Dist- 2.9
time- 7:50
avg- 22.7
avg power - 246
max power - 378
np- 252
Janets pull
Dist- 2.8
time- 7:35
avg- 22.5
avg power - 216 watts
max power - 634 watts
np- 225 watts"

So last week wrapped up being pretty solid.  On tap for race week is just a bunch of swimming, one brick and one bike.  I decided since I had some time Monday morning with being off that I would knock out the 30 mile bike.  Day 3 of riding also went pretty well, despite the cool, rain-threatening weather.

One more workout besides swimming!  :-)  I should do it tonight but perhaps it can wait until Thursday morning.  I am getting soooo excited!

Race week is a funny thing.  You start over-analyzing everything.

What will the weather be?
Do I have exactly everything planning nutrition wise?
What was my avg speed, avg HR, max HR last year.  What should I target this year on both bike/run?
What will I order for dinner?
Should I pack my own toaster and coffee maker again?
Oh please let the weather be decent!
What will I want in my cooler post race...besides the obvious ;-)

Ok, only a few more days of this!  Almost time to get packing, but I think first some laundry is in order tonight!

Thursday, September 01, 2011

REV3 - Guess your finishing time and win a bike rack!

If you are signed up for REV3 Cedar Point you likely got an email along these lines this week.

"REV3 Athletes, Yakima is proud and excited to be the official bike rack of the 2011 Revolution3 Triathlon Series.  To show our love for you folks racing in Cedar Point we propose a little "name your time" competition.  The 3 winners will receive a free bike rack."

Now, part of me really hates the idea of holding my goal out there for all to see.  Yet, for some reason I just can't pass up the idea of winning something.  So of course I went over to the Yakima page, liked it and had to put down a time.

The time was sort of hard for me to come up with as of course I want something realistic, something attainable but yet I want to challenge myself to do what I am capable of. 

While I like the idea of giving myself some cushion so I can say I met my goal. Who does that really?  Do I say my goal is 11:15 when in fact it is to break 11 hours.  That seems like I am just setting myself up for not achieving what I really want.  Then there is also the fact that I don't like the idea of holding it out there if it is not realistic because saying you are capable of X doesn't mean much unless you actually do it.  I wanted to be honest as to what my goal actually was.  So my Yakima time is listed as 10:59:00 as breaking 11 hours is what I am going for.

So here is how I am laying it out in my head.

2010 REV3 Total Time:  11:38:16 - Last year was my first 140.6.  My goal obviously was to finish and my A goal was to break 12 hours and I was happy to do so with a nice cushion!  Yet, topping this goal for 2011 is no easy task because 2010 was a pretty solid performance for me in my opinion.  This year is so much harder because now I feel like I have the benchmark to beat!

2010 Swim:  1:27:13 - Had major panic attack.  Went from one side of field to other where there was a kayaker to tread water and convince myself to keep going.  Started breast stroking and finally got going.  Not a strong swim.  Although my swim is still weak and my shoulder, I think if I put together a relaxed swim based on my 1.8 mile swim, I should be able to swim a 1:20.  I think my secret weapon, the new TYR Hurricane wetsuit will seal the deal...seriously, I just feel like this wetsuit makes me faster!  LOVE IT!

2011 Swim Goal: 1:20

2010 T1:  3:14.  Not too shabby.  If I could do that again, I would take it.  But this year we will even have wetsuit strippers!!!  For planning I will say 2011 T1: 5:00 (hopefully a little cushion)

2010 Bike:  5:47:02 (112miles, 19.36 mph)
Last year I think I did a nice job pacing on the bike.  Splits were 20.5mi at 19.5, 37.3mi at 19.78, 54.2mi at 19.03.  Last year I tried to ride a relatively conservative pace.  I had heard of too many people who blow their run on the bike so I tried to think about that as I watched my HR on the bike.  I am hoping to ride a little more aggressively, but pay attention to HR and RPE and hopefully I can stay closer to 20.0 mph/

2011 Bike Goal:  5:35:00 (20.0 avg mph)

2010 T2: 5:42-  I got off the bike and my hamstrings were soo tight.  I was hobbling badly and not sure how I was going to run.  I had had to pee for a long time on the bike and hit the POP in transition before heading out to run.  Hopefully T2 can be around 5:00 this year and my legs don't feel so wonky when I get off the bike!

2010 Run:  4:15:03 (26.2 mi at 9:44 pace)
In 2010, it took a bit to get going and then I had a pretty steady pace.  I stopped at mile 2.5 to take care of business.  Then I had some issues in the middle of it with my asthma, but I hit my inhaler, took pain reliever and just focused on the task at hand.  I think I was running at a pace that I knew I would have no trouble continuing running.  I wanted to make sure I would not blow up and have to walk.  I was tired but not really pushing by any means.  I think there is a lot of room for improvement here.  My running has been going well and my running legs feel stronger this year.  

2011 Goal:  3:50:00 at 8:46 pace

So the goals are-
Swim: 1:20
T1:      :05
Bike:  5:35
T2:      :05
Run:   3:50
That adds up to 10:55, giving me 5 minutes to play with and still get me in under that 11 hr A Goal.

So there it is.  That is what my goal is.  Now I just need to hope I can put it together.  Last year we were treated to pretty favorable weather conditions, which can be such a factor, so hopefully we luck out again!  

Overall, I just want to finish with a smile and not hurt myself.  Beating last years 11:38 time would be great, beating 11 hours would be totally sweet and a 10:59:00 would get me that bike rack!  :-)