Wednesday, May 28, 2008

500th Post: me me me me

Thanks for the feedback on potentially changing my blog a little, you guys are so nice. :) I changed my template and added a couple new pictures, whopee. I lack the technical knowledge to do anything cooler. And I think I'll slightly alter the way I post my workouts but I'll still post them and talk about them. I think I'll just try to not talk so much about the boring ones.

So I'll start all that with my next post because this (doo doo doooo!) 500TH (cue confetti, streamers) post is all about meeeeeeeeeeeee. Not just triathlete/runner me, but real me! Surprisingly, I have other stuff going on in my life! Let's get to it.

100 things about me

10 things about my past:

- I was born on September 10, 1980.
- I spent the first 21 years of my life in Montana.
- I am still best friends with girls I met at ages 4 and 10.
- I danced in the Pro Bowl halftime show in 1997 with some of the dance team I was on in high school. The main act was Montel Jordan singing "This is how we do it" Aww ya.
- I was kicked off the dance team for, um, breaking the law.
- I was kind of a bad kid in high school.
- I feel really bad about the way I treated my parents and brother in high school.
- I turned out allright though, and graduated college with honors with a degree in Geography.
- I was voted "Most Changed in 4 Years" by my senior classmates. My brother earned the same distinction when he graduated high school.
- I suffered with depression for a few years in high school/college and was on an anti-depressant for some time.

10 things about my personality:

- I think I'm hilarious.
- I think I'm gorgeous.
- I have a really fragile ego.
- I'm a whiny bratty baby.
- I'm bossy.
- I'm really generous and love helping people.
- I'm obsessively organized/particular.
- I cry really easily and often.
- I'm annoyingly positive.
- I love to talk.

10 random things I love:

- trivia games
- comedies
- lists
- salt
- running
- singing
- my brother's sense of humor
- being alone in the outdoors
- jazz music
- booze

10 things I dislike/pet-peeves

- when people say "give 110%" or any figure over 100%. It only goes to 100. (also: giving things an 11 on a scale of 1-10)
- the phrase "know-how"
- people who interrupt
- exceedingly hot weather
- traffic
- talking about politics
- working
- bad customer service
- being told what to do
- swallowing large pills

10 cool places I've been:

- Yellowstone National Park
- California Redwood forests
- New York City
- Boston
- Seattle
- Beach cities of southern California
- Hawaii
- British Columbia
- Arizona desert
- Las Vegas

10 dreams/goals:

- Ironman
- spend time in Europe (more than a couple weeks)
- live in another city
- be in a local play
- place well in my hometown marathon
- have a baby/babies
- live in a secluded rural place and be semi self sufficient.
- have a nice home and work with my two best friends who are architects/designers to make it beautiful.
- start a business with Zach doing something we enjoy
- space travel

10 "favorites":

- favorite movie: The Jerk
- favorite food: fried stuff
- favorite drink: three way tie between Moose Drool beer, Riesling wine, and Grey Goose Martini. In the non-alcoholic category: Chocolate milkshakes.
- favorite color: blue
- favorite number: 4
- favorite season: fall
- favorite smell: lavender
- favorite cookie: double chocolate chip
- favorite clothing item: comfy pants
- favorite animal: gotta go with bunny

10 things I'm proud of doing:

- completing 6 marathons
- getting through all the rough times with Zach
- quitting smoking/drugs
- having been at my job 5 years
- trying new things when they seem scary
- travelling alone for work a lot
- continuing to learn and challenge myself when stuff interests me
- being a good wife, daughter, friend, sister
- having a blog that people actually read!
- being healthy

Um, this is getting hard. Maybe I should just do 80 things about me...

Oh I know!

10 pictures I love:

and we'll end with something useful for the folks at home:
10 fun websites:
- everyone's blog (see sidebar)
Allright, so, this post took a looooong time and started feeling disgustingly self-indulgent. But isn't that pretty much what having a blog is all about?
That's all for me! Thank you and good night!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Long weekend wrap up

Saturday 29.5 miles bike/1:59:26/14.7 MPH- group ride to top of Caleveras Rd.

+ run 3.0 miles/21:57/7:19 average pace- flew on my run for no particular reason. I just went out at a good pace and was surprised at the first mile split. So I kept it going- it got hard but I was really happy with my time.

Sunday run 8.0 miles/1:13:55/9:15 average pace- skipped my open water swim again, but decided to get in a long run instead. I ran on the Stevens Creek trail down by my brother's house. Sister-in-law is doing good, by the way! She's glad to be home from the hospital and to start healing up. :)

TOTALS for last week: 19 miles Run, 71.1 miles Bike, 4450 Swim

total training time: 9 hrs 15 minutes (recovery week)

Monday swim 2400 y/55:30- morning Master's class

Monday run 6.0 miles/53:01/8:50 average pace- after swim class and a bagel breakfast we drove to the Hayward Regional Shoreline for a run along the bay. It was cool and cloudy- perfect running weather.

So in addition to all that training stuff, we did lots of fun stuff: bowling, watched hockey, I hung out with my brother and sister-in-law, went to a bbq party, and enjoyed some adult beverages. I also slept a LOT (due to the training and partially to the adult beverage enjoyment). I slept for about 2 hours Saturday afternoon after my brick workout, and I slept for about 2 hours yesterday after getting home from the bbq. That's in addition to sleeping like a rock for 8-10 hours every night.

Well this is my 499th blog post, and I think I might make some changes to my posting format or something starting with the big 5-0-0. To be honest, I feel like my blog is getting boring. :( All it is is training updates, which is of course the whole purpose of the blog, but it's just so redundant. I don't know what I'll do but I'd like to switch things up a little. Nothing major. Any ideas?

Friday, May 23, 2008

Holiday Weekend Plans

Well the holiday weekend is here and guess what I'm doing? That's right, a sh1tload of training!! Weeeee!

But first, here's Thursday for ya:

Thursday am bike: 21.0 miles/1 :20:02/15.7 MPH- This is the first time I ever got up and rode my bike in the morning and it was awesome! It gets light here at like 5:45 so we were out by 6:00. And way less traffic = way faster Jen. Zach and I rode a 14 mile loop together, then he went off to do a brick run and I added a few miles to the bike. The only bad thing about biking in the morning is that it takes a long time and makes you late for work. Oops!

Thursday pm swim: 2450 y/54:59- Ya, so Wednesday night I played the "recovery week" card again and skipped my swim class. And when I skip a workout, I do it right- I ate half a pizza and didn't leave the couch all night. It was fabulous! But it wasn't really a skip after all, because I made it up by shuffling my Thursday workouts around. The class last night was very fun, we did drills, kick sets, and easy swimming to warm up. Our main set was really fun- we did 50s as a group on 2 minutes. The coach would start the clock and we went in little waves and then recovered until the next interval. We did a variety of strokes and my lane (the slow lane) was having a little competition with the next-to-slow lane (which didn't include Zach, did I mention he's now two lanes over! And to think I knew him when). Of course we were slower but not by much, and I annihilated my competition in the breastroke one time! He was a freakishly slow breaststroker, but still. Fun stuff. We also talked about an upcoming Open Water Swim event next weekend that TVM is putting on. I'm doing it! I'm doing the 3/4 mile race (ha ha, race!). This is real swimming too- NO wetsuits people! Should be interesting. This is a really fun group so I'm looking forward to it. There's a bbq after and goodie bags and everything. :)

So back to the 3 day weekend. Lots of training and a few fun things going on. First, tonight after work we are going to Sports Basement in Walnut Creek to pick up a few new tri and bike things. Tomorrow I'm doing the group ride (30 miles ish) and then a brick run (3 miles). Zach will be going to the morning master's class but we're meeting after for some farmer's market-ing and breakfast in Pleasanton. Then we're going into San Francisco to hang out, maybe go to the beach, and get dinner.

Sunday we're going to do an OWS without wetsuits to prepare for next weekend. Then I'm going down to visit my sister-in-law who is in the hospital recovering from major back surgery. She's had a degenerated disc problem for a long time now and had a whole reconstruction thing done involving screws and bone grafts. This girl has been through a lot of pain but has been hangin' tough (haha). I'm so glad she's finally on her way to recovery and will finally get her life back. She told me she has so much pent up energy from being basically on bed rest for months now that she just wants to get out and run. Hehe... well probably not run, but I'm going to hold her to that! A few months from now when she is fully recovered we're going to do something really cool like a big hike or bike ride or something. I can't wait. :)

Monday we're going to a special-edition master's class from 8:00-9:30, then we are going to do a trail run somewhere cool (I have 6 miles on the schedule). Then I think we're going to a bbq party with a coworker of Zach's.

Unfortunately, it's not really that warm here, but I think we'll manage. There's plenty of 100+ days coming up this summer so might as well enjoy the mild temps while they are here. Hope everyone has a fun and safe holiday weekend!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Turns out this is actually a recovery week for me. At first I didn't really see the point since it's only the 4th week of my training, but now I'm so glad! I've been feeling kinda run down and just generally wiped out this week so I'm glad the workouts are a smidge easier. Here's the latest swim, bike, run update:

Tuesday am: swim 2000 y/44:02- I didn't make it to Master's on Monday night. My main excuse is that Zach had to work late and I wasn't motivated to go on my own. I was also tired as previously mentioned. So instead of swimming I watched back to back to back episodes of the Real World and snacked mindlessly. BUT, I redeemed myself by rising at 5:45 the next morning and driving up to the gym and doing my longest ever SOLO swim workout. Go me! I did a warm up, some drills, a main set including intervals, and some kicking. Just like Master's only a little shorter and not as fun. Not bad though! I did 100 y intervals in about 1:50 which is not very fast but good for me. It will be cool to see how I improve over the next couple months.

Tuesday pm: bike 20.6 miles/1:30:00/13.7 MPH- Zach took me on a new route that happened to include a lot of hills. Including short steep ones after sudden turns that he didn't warn me about, resulting in me being seriously ill-geared and nearly toppling over. Luckily (for him) I remained upright. It was also super windy. Kinda scary actually, a few rogue cross winds nearly blew me over!

Wednesday am: run 4.0 miles/33:26/8:22 average pace- despite the fact that I was deep in REM sleep and could have continued sleeping for several more hours, I got out of bed for my run and actually had a lot of energy. I did the first 2 miles with Zach, then turned back while he did an extra couple miles. My last two miles were 8:06 and 7:55! Didn't even feel that hard.

Well tonight it is back to Master's and then American Idol results show (go David Cook!).

Monday, May 19, 2008

Tri Practice

Lots of catching up as usual!

Wednesday Swim (Master's Class) 2800 yards in approximately 1 hour (forgot watch). I won't list the sets but it included some kicking, some pulling, and a long set where I just worked on my technique. Specifically, she had me focus on rolling my body and high elbows. It went allright, I haven't had the "aha" moment everyone talks about with swimming, but it'll happen.

Thursday Bike 24.6 miles/1:56:55/12.6 MPH- It was super hot, about 100, so I convinced Zach to join me on the Iron Horse for a leisurely ride. We got the miles in, so I'm happy with it.

Friday: Off

Saturday Run 7.0 miles/1:02:58/9:00 average pace- I was supposed to do 8 miles but we had a Tri Skills clinic at 9:00 and didn't get going early enough, so we cut it short. We ran the first 3.5 together, then Zach went on ahead and I finished at my own pace. It was already very warm out, about 80 degrees. We had about 5 minutes to change into our tri clothes, grab our stuff, load up our bikes, and eat something. I made a chocolate protein shake while Zach did the bikes and we shared it onto the way to the Tri clinic.

The triathlon skills class was lead by Kate Samuelson and Lee Canon from the Forward Motion Elite team. It was pretty beginner-oriented, but I'm pretty much a beginner, so it was ok. I did pick up a few good tips and got a good review of what I already knew. The first half was the discussion/lecture. Then we spent about an hour doing some open water swimming drills and practicing transitions. We swam about 600 yards (yes, I'm logging it!) while working on drafting, sighting, mass starts, and beach starts. Then, after the last practice start, we basically did a mini practice triathlon. We ran out of the water to our transition stations (which we set up before the swim) and went through T1 then out for a little bike loop (1/2 mile maybe), then a quick T2 and a short run (same loop). Pretty fun. :)
Here's a pic from the FMRC website: Zach is the giant tall dude in the dead center and I'm off to the far left with my hand on my hip. Ain't I spunky!

Sunday Bike 40.4 miles/2:56:57/13.6 MPH. This was my first time with the Sunday group, which is noticeably more serious than the Saturday newbie ride. I had Zach with me so I knew I wouldn't end up totally alone. The group quickly left me (us, although Zach could have easily kept up) in the dust, but the group split up after a few miles and we found ourselves a nice pack of similar-paced riders. We went out Caleveras Road and paused at about 12.5 miles, which was where I turned around at my first group ride a couple weeks ago. Not this time though, this time we were going on. This time we were climbing. It was about 3 mile climb and I wish I knew how much elevation we gained.. I'll estimate 15,000 feet (hehe). Actually, it wasn't that bad. Sure, we were going about 8 MPH for most of it, but we were keeping up with the group and it never felt too hard. Once at the top, we decided to go on a few more miles and that included quite bit more climbing. It was so worth it though- the views of Caleveras Reservoir and the golden hills were amazing! Zach and I turned around at the 20 mile mark and made our way back. I found the descending to be pretty scary at first, but I think even by the bottom of the hill I'd gotten a little better. It occurred to me during this ride that it's really more of a Practice then a Training ride. My focus is on the skills and techniques that are involved with cycling, and the actual physical conditioning is kind of secondary. Unlike running, in which the skills are pretty non-existent and it's all about the physical conditioning. I thought that was interesting. I'm sure I'll start pushing myself more and improving my cycling strength and endurance, but I have to master a lot of skills before I can do that.

Big week for me!
TOTAL distance covered: 18 miles run, 82 miles bike, and 6100 yards swim
TOTAL training time: 10.5 hours.

This morning I got up and ran. Here is that workout and the rest of the week schedule:

Monday Run 4.0 miles/35:33/8:54 average pace
Monday pm: Master's Class

Tuesday: 20 miles bike

Wednesday am: 6 miles run
Wednesday pm: Master's Class

Thursday: 20 miles bike

Friday: off

Saturday: 30 miles bike + 3 miles brick run

Sunday: Open Water Swim + 2 miles brick run

Hope everyone had a good weekend! :)

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

swim bike run, repeat

My last three workouts actually happened in that order:

Monday swim- Master's class: 2700 yards total in 58:34

I understood the instructions a lot better this time, and I think that freed up a little more energy for actual swimming. Plus, we had a different coach this week and the workout was quite a bit harder. Another difference was that there were 5 (6?) people in our lane! Zach was the fastest and I was the slowest and we all just swam in long circles one after another. It was weird but it helped push me along.

Here is the workout we did:

warm up: 400 yards free on my own

warm up set: 10 x 75 first 25 6 kick, switch (every other time: 3 kick, switch), then 50 free

8 x 50 build

main set: 3 x [4 x 100] with a drill in there somewhere focusing on the "finish" and some of this set was non-free (breaststroke for me, although I did try one lap backstroke and proceeded to swim directly into an oncoming swimmer, then switched back to breaststroke)

cool down: 100 on my own, focus on rolling and high elbows

The reason that doesn't add up exactly is that there were a few sets where I skipped out on the last 50 because I was behind the group and wanted to keep up with what they were doing.

Yay! Another master's class complete and it was another fun time. I met a really nice girl who is training for her first marathon and lives right nearby me. :)

Tuesday: bike 17.2 miles/1:05:15/15.8 MPH

I rode solo on the Iron Horse Trail because I had a work thing at 5:00 that kept me from the planned 6:00 group ride. Zach did make it, though, and he had a blast. Turns out the pace was rather fast so I'm glad I didn't go. I'll work up to it, but it might have been too much for me. However, Zach did meet some new people including a couple women who ride/coach Team Luna Chix and apparently he told them all about me (*blush*) and they had all kinds of encouragement for him to pass on to me. :) They do a few events each year and the next one is a century ride, and I can go train with them and do the century! There are a bunch of girls who are new-ish cyclists who are looking for more girls to ride with so I'm definitely looking into this. Yay new people!! This tri thing is turning out to be quite the social jackpot.

Oh ya, my ride. It was good. :) I had a good pace going and am getting more comfortable in my gearing and handling. Clipping into my pedals is getting easier too. Next lesson: drinking while riding. I reached for my water bottle once and immediately put both hands back on my handlebars. I need to work on my balance. I've never been able to ride no-hands on ANY bike (in fact I have a small scar on my chin from a no-hands ride gone wrong circa 1990) which most people can do. I need to at least be able to ride with ONE hand so I can freaking hydrate. I'm not planning on stopping during my race to drink water!!

Which brings us to this fine California day:

Wednesday run: 6.0 miles/50:06/8:21 average pace

Zach, with his fancy-schmancy running schedule, had a tempo run planned for today. I am still well within the window of using Boston as an excuse to avoid such torture, but I HTFU and did it anyway (btw, there's going to be a lot of H-ingTFU going on around here, so prepare to hear the term a lot). Technically, he can run a lot faster than me, but he's terrible at pacing so we ran this together. Basically, I ran as fast as I could without collapsing and he ran along beside me looking disgustingly fresh. Here's how it went:

2 miles warm up around 9:15 pace

2 miles Tempo Pace: 7:34, 7:38

Then I really felt on the brink of death, so I encouraged Zach to finish up with 2 more miles on that pace (which he did beautifully) and I would do an easy pace and see him at home. But after less than a mile I felt better and figured I could try for one more mile at Tempo pace. I did that one in 7:39, not bad! Then I shuffled on home for some well-deserved fiber cereal (that's sarcasm, I deserved a gooey cinnamon roll!).

Tonight is another Master's class (already!?) and enchiladas. This tri schedule is keeping me wicked busy but I like it. I am handling the training well so far, but then again it is only week 2 (or 3, something like that). I think because it's such a variety and there's not as much running, which is what causes the most soreness/tiredness. Although Zach seems to think the swimming is terribly draining, insisting on eating double portions and sleeping a few extra hours the night after... I guess it doesn't have the same effect on me? I guess I'm just a little more hard core, hehe... kidding! We're equally hard core, just in different ways. *remembers crying on last bike ride cause I was scurred to go fast* Ok, nevermind, he's way more hard core. :)

Monday, May 12, 2008

Brick Weekend

Finishing off last week's workout report:

Thursday BIKE 24.4 miles/1:44:27/14 MPH
Zach and I did a loop around our area: Dublin, San Ramon, Danville. There were nice bike lanes most of the way, but the traffic made me nervous anyway. I was even more nervous on the descents... to be honest, I was kind of a baby about it. I am thinking of getting a mirror because part of the anxiety is not knowing where the cars are behind me. But mostly, I need to keep getting out there and generally HTFU.

Friday I took completely off. Ahhhh.

Saturday I went back to the group ride at Cyclepath and this time Zach joined me. We rode a much flatter and more bike-friendly route this time. This route, plus having Zach with me, lead to a fun and comfortable ride. I was cruising too! I kind of lead the way back and we were doing 18-20 MPH for long stretches. We met a few more new people including a girl who also ran Boston and is thinking of doing her first tri this summer. :) Here's the stats: Saturday BIKE 28.8 miles/1:51:34/15.4 MPH

Then it was brick time. I quickly changed shoes and put on a hat and headed out. Zach took care of loading my bike up on the car which was nice. I didn't bring my GPS (plus it would have taken a few minutes to locate a signal anyway) and just ran for time. I think I was robbed though because I estimated 9:00 miles and I know I was running faster than that! I felt pretty good- legs were strong and not too wobbly/crampy or anything from the bike. I did get hot because I was wearing black capri-length bike pants. Next time I'm going with my tri shorts. Here's the run stats: Brick 3.0 miles/27:00/9:00 (estimate)

Right after finishing we walked through the Pleasanton Farmer's Market and I scored a free orange. It was just like the finish area of a race! First brick workout is in the books and it was a success.

Sunday's swim/run brick, however, I kinda blew off. Well, I blew off the swim. It was cloudy and windy when we got up, and I was NOT feeling the open water swim (yes, yes, HTFU... I'm working on it.). I did some errands and hoped it would warm up, but by the time it was warm I wasn't motivated. I did get out for my run though, and I did a little extra to make up for the non-swim. I listened to Steve Runner's latest podcast and heard my Boston race report! Awesome!! It was interesting to hear others' reports too. It made me feel better about my time hearing how hard everyone thought it was (which it obviously was!). Run stats: Sunday 4.0 miles/35:37/8:55 average pace

Zach made steaks on the grill and we caught up on a few episodes of Jeopardy, then went to bed early. Here's the summary of my week:

18.15 miles RUN

63.2 miles BIKE
3250 yards SWIM

TOTAL training time: approximately 8 hours


This morning Zach and I got up for the first workout of the week:

Monday 5.0 miles/43:34/8:43 average pace

I would have totally phoned this one in with 9:00+ recovery pace but Zach was all "Let's pick it up for the last miles!" Ugh. I wanted to strangle him at the time (Pick it up? At 6:30 am on a freaking Monday? Please.) but I'm glad he pushed me. I'm not going to get faster running slow. Did the last two miles in 8:25 and 8:02.

Here's the rest of the week's schedule:

Monday am: run 5 (done)
Monday pm: Master's Swim Class (yay!)

Tuesday: bike 25 miles - we're trying a new group ride nearby. We're such group people lately!

Wednesday am: run 6 miles with 4 @ tempo pace
Wednesday pm: Master's

Thursday: bike 25 miles (solo, Zach has to do a hard ride and I don't want to hold him back)

Friday: rest, sweet rest

Saturday: Triathlon Skills Clinic in the morning out at Shadow Cliffs Lake
followed immediately by: run 8 miles Long Run

Sunday: 40+ miles group ride- first time with the Sunday group, should be interesting. The Saturday ride I've been doing is a "beginner's" ride. :O

One final note: CONGRATULATIONS to Francis for his Boston Qualifying marathon this weekend!! He's worked hard for this and deserves a big shout out. Well done my friend!!

Thursday, May 08, 2008

First Masters Swim Class

Last night Zach and I attended our first every Master's swim class in Pleasanton (Tri Valley Masters). It was awesome! The best part was the people were so friendly and welcoming. The coach, Kelley, was really nice and patient with all my questions. There were about 10 people there and I wasn't even the slowest person, I was second-slowest. :) There were at least a few triathletes in the group. Most people are regulars which is nice because we can get used to the same faces and will feel welcome.

It was so fun swimming in outdoor pool with the sun shining, and then setting in plain view. Beautiful!

I cannot believe that I swam for so long. The class started just after 6:30 pm and ended at 8:00. I wore my watch and had it running while I swam (stopped it during rests) and I swam for a total of 59 minutes! :O That's almost twice as long as I've EVER been swimming at one time and three times as long as I normally swim. It went by so fast though because the sets were all short and different so it was broken up into manageable bits.

I found the most challenging thing to be understanding and remembering the sets. It was crazy how she would say "Ok you're going to do 8 50's alternating, odds are free and evens are non-free with drills." Or "Next set is going to be 3 75's of kick, swim, kick, then two 150's descending, and finish with 300 strong but negative split." And that was without her even telling us rest times. Good lord I was confused. She basically had to repeat everything two or three times to me. "Um, so, alternating what?" "Oh ok, and what's a non-free drill?" "Oh ok, gotcha. How many are we doing?" Oh man. She was really patient and helpful though. I thanked her after and told her that I know I"ll start to understand better with some experience. Zach was in the next faster lane over and would just listen once and then pretty much follow what the others were doing- he picked it up really quick.

I never felt too tired or wore out, and I'm not even sore today. I think I was going pretty easy because I was so mentally overwhelmed with all the numbers. Once I get that down, I will have to spend less time concentrating and can put more effort into the actual swimming!

She did give me one good tip about my stroke- to keep my elbows high (which I've heard but never really made sense). I'm sure I"ll get more tips over time- plus it's probably better to hear one thing at a time and practice it.

Well here's the workout, as best remembered in the car right afterwards. I think I ended up with 2500 yards total. :O (the farthest I've ever gone in one session is 1750).

warm up on my own: 400 yards free

warm up set: 3 x 75 kick swim kick (kicking without board, that was weird)

8 x 50 drills, alternating free and non-free

main set: 4 x 75 descending (each 75 is faster than the last)

2 x 150 building (getting faster within each 150)

1 x 300 hard, negative split

pulling with paddles (my first time using them) and pull buoy

4 x 25

2 x 50

1 x 100

kicking (with board) (realized I have a very strong kick!)

6 x 25

cool down on my own: 150 (decided to stop when I got a foot/toe cramp and was almost done anyway)

wow. that is a crazy amount of information to see it written there. It really felt confusing during the workout but I know I will start getting used to the terms and numbers and what not. I know there's a whole system of shorthand for writing it down but I'm cant worry about that yet.

So, this was our "trial" session (free) but we're definitely going to sign up. We're probably going to go on Monday and Wednesday nights but there are lots of practices we could attend. Who knows, maybe I will add a day!

Another really cool thing about the team is there are several open water events they all do. Zach and I are considering doing a couple of them. It would be a great way to get some open water experience, which is one of my biggest hang-ups when it comes to racing in a triathlon. There is even one in July in the Russian River, which is exactly where my Half Ironman race is!

Well that was a really long post but dangit it was a really long workout! :D Actually I just wanted to give all the details in case anyone out there was considering joining a master's swim class. I obviously would recommend it! I was really nervous and intimidated but now I can't wait to go back. If I can do it, anyone can. :)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Triathlon Season is here!

Last weekend we drove up to Napa for Zach's first triathlon of the year, the Napa Valley Sprint Triathlon put on by Envirosports. I spectated with his mom and step dad and had a blast. The event took place at scenic Lake Berryessa. Check out his race report on his blog- he did great! He has several pictures on his blog so I'll just put one here- this is right after he finished:

After returning home on Sunday I went for a bike ride- my first time out solo on my new bike. I stuck to the Iron Horse trail but had a good pace going: 11.3 miles/43:10/15.7 MPH

So that gave me the following TOTALS for Week 1 of my HIM training:
10 miles run (good recovery week)
2000 m swim
70 miles bike (yay!)
Total training time: 7 hours (approx.)
(est. 9:00 run pace, 15 MPH bike pace, and two 22 minute swims... in the future I'll actually add up the time in my log)

So Week 2 is already underway and here's what I've done so far:

Was going to swim Monday morning (solo at the gym, Zach was taking a rest day so Master's class will have to wait) but I was up LATE watching the final game of the San Jose Shark's season. Well into the FOURTH OVERTIME Dallas scored and ended what seemed to be a never-ending game. I'm bummed the Sharks are out of the playoffs but did they ever go down fighting.

Monday 5.15 miles/45:54/8:55 average pace- Solo run after work. Listened to Steve's Boston Marathon Race on Pheddipidations. Favorite quote: "Brain off. Legs on."

Tuesday am: make-up swim: 750 m in 16:11. Zach was taking it easy since he's only two days out from his race and I was feeling lazy. I am really looking forward to the Master's class because as you can see, I am horrible at pushing myself in swimming. And I'm slow.

Tuesday pm: 30 minute ride on the trainer. I was going to skip the ride altogether (I know, I'm really slacking this week so far) because I was feeling very tired and lazy. My in-laws left this morning and it was kind of nice to just veg out after the busy weekend. I did a little cleaning, ate some potato chips, and watched The Hills. I guess a couple hours of lounging was all I needed because I was suddenly motivated and set up the trainer for a abbreviated workout. This was the first time I've used the bike trainer and WOW. It is a lot harder than I thought. The 30 minute ride was harder then any ride I've done so far, even the 1 hour and 45 minute group ride. Because there is no stopping for stoplights, no coasting, no drafting. Just cranking away the whole time. I was dripping sweat and just counting down the minutes. I have a whole new respect for Michele and others who ride for 2+ hours on the trainer... that is incredible.

Hang in there, we're almost done!

Wednesday am 6.0 miles/54:38/9:06 average pace- It was really windy but not too cold this morning, about 50 degrees. Zach ran 2 miles with me then turned around to finish with 4 miles and I did the rest solo. I listened to one of my many back logged podcasts and took the pace easy. I have a feeling that the runs will be my little safe space during tri training. The cycling and the swimming are so new and difficult and scary, but running is familiar and easy and fun. It will be a good balance.

Speaking of new and difficult and scary, we're going to our first Master's swim class tonight at 6:30. I hope it's fun. I'm pretty nervous that I"ll be really slow and not understand the drills but I'm going to do my best and I'm not afraid to ask questions. I know I need this class and I'm willing to put in the work. I'll report back tomorrow- I'm going to start updating my blog more then twice a week, these posts are getting too dang long!

Friday, May 02, 2008

Moving on

I miss Boston. :( I miss talking about it and wearing my medal around the house and I miss being sore. Let's be honest, I miss the attention. I hope some of you can relate... I mean, we train our asses off 365 days a year and on 1 or 2 of those days people actually give a crap. I know you all give craps year round, and that's why I love you, but it is so neat to get emails from family and friends and all that. Sigh. I swear I'm not bitter, I'm just rambling here. I actually forget about the "glory" for most of the year and then as I approach the finish line at that goal race it all comes rushing back to me and I am on top of the world for about a week. But life goes on. The un-supported, solo, spectator-less 6am morning runs are really what it's all about, and I love it. I love the alone time, the solitude, challenging myself knowing no one will know about it besides the 12 people that read my blog. Anyway, that's what's going through my post-Boston brain these days.

Also taking up space in my head: TRIATHLON!!!! Bike bike bike bike. Did I mention my sweet new bike?

I've set up my training schedule for my Half Ironman race on August 2nd, which is just over 13 weeks away. I'll be on that bike a lot. Here's the basic foundation of my schedule, feel free to comment:

Monday am: run 6 ish

Monday pm: Masters swim class (scary!)

Tuesday: bike 20-30 miles

(only workout scheduled for that day, gives me some wiggle room to move workouts around or do strength training or add workouts)

Wednesday: same as Monday

Thursday: same as Tuesday

Friday: rest

Alternating weekend schedules:

(Endurance Weekend)

Saturday: Long run (8-12 miles)

Sunday: Long bike with group (40-60 miles)

(Brick Weekend)

Saturday: Bike 30-40 miles plus 3-6 mile run

Sunday: Open Water Swim plus short 2-3 mile run

It all looks more organized on paper. I based the schedule kind of on one I found on and I got the alternating endurance/brick weekend idea from some article I read but can't remember where.

I have three races taking place between now and August. Two are sprint tris and one half marathon (see side bar for specifics). The tris take place on Brick Weekends and the half marathon takes place on an Endurance Weekend so it works out perfectly. I would do an Olympic distance tri but couldn't find one that fit my schedule.

The schedule technically began this week but I have just been doing my own thing since I'm still recovering from Boston and Zach has a tri this weekend. He's doing the next sprint tri with me and also the half marathon, so our schedules will kind of overlap (like master's class and group rides). We'll really get on the schedule next week.

Well, here's what I've been doing this week. I certainly haven't been lazy but it's nothing crazy.

Starting last weekend- on Saturday we went for our first open water swim of the year. Only about 300 yards but it was nice to try out our wetsuits and get those first open water heebie jeebies out of our systems. Sunday I rode my old bike 19 miles which I mentioned in my last post, and then got my new bike. :)

Monday: 17 miles on new bike! AWESOME.

Turns out I totally over-thought the clipping out thing. It wasn't hard at all. In fact, clipping out of the pedals is the easy part. It's getting clipped IN that's hard! The bike felt comfortable and smooth. The only place I felt discomfort was my forearms from the new handlebar position. Everything else was great. Our time was 1:14:40 which is 13.6 MPH but that includes my clipping in/out practice. I got one of those wireless digital bike speedometer thingies which is great for tracking speed and distance, but the timer is a little annoying because it basically keeps running when you stop. Well, it pauses eventually, but it captures a lot of that stopped time which f's up my average pace. I guess it's no big deal but it bugs me. Anyway, YAY bike!

Tuesday am: swim 1000 m (250 crawl, 250 backstroke, 500 crawl)

Tuesday pm: 3 miles/27:41/9:13 average pace Easy run with Zach after dinner (we were bored).

Wednesday pm: 4 miles/36:14/9:03 average pace Another easy run with Zach after work.

Thursday am: swim 1000 m

Thursday pm: bike 17 miles/1:06:00/15 MPH (approx) We've been riding on the Iron Horse Trail until I'm comfortable enough to go on the roads, which will be soon I'm sure. Again, I think the average speed is misleading because we were doing about 15 MPH on the way up into a headwind, and more like 18-20 MPH on the way back. It was a very fun ride. I feel so cool when I'm on my bike. :) I was even singing a song about "how cool am I" until I realized that singing a dorky song significantly reduces my coolness. My compromise: humming!

Friday 3.0 miles/26:09/8:43 average pace Finally getting a little speed back! Ran this morning before work with Zach. We're leaving tomorrow to drive up to Napa with his parents. We'll stay at a hotel and then his race is on Sunday. I will take a lot of pictures and cheer him on, it will be so fun. He's definitely ready to race. Which is amazing because he just had surgery 2 months ago and was completely out of commission for a few weeks after that. What a comeback! GOOD LUCK ZACH!

Last but not least, big shout out to my MOM who is officially retired!! Congratulations Mom! Wish we could be there for your big dinner tonight. Love you!

Have a great weekend everyone, thanks for reading this super long post.