Saturday, April 30, 2011

April Round-Up

Despite how the month started out, April ended up being okay.

The very start of April was the last of the final death plagues and was then spent driving to Minnesota. We managed a few workouts in Minnesota (two runs, a cycle, a lift) and a few after we got back, but it took until the middle of the month to somehow kick-start ourselves and get going.

For me, I think it was my miserable bike commute to work one day. The weekend after we got back from Minnesota, I found out I was filling in at another store. As said store is still a decent haul away (about eight miles), it is nicely accessible off a frontage road and I wouldn't have to get on the interstate like I would if I wanted to bike to my normal store.

Of the three days I filled in, two were commutable. The first got thwarted due to nasty, nasty winds, but I forced myself to do it the other day. It was hard - I hadn't done that ride since last June - and I forgot just quite how bad some of the hills were. Still, I did it.

And from that point on in the month, I was a (relative) machine which is now making me feel pretty good.

Onward to numbers!

Running: 23.31 miles (average went down about eight seconds/mile)
Swimming: 1.86 miles (first recorded mileage! swim times seem kinda fast, but are deceptive as i stop my watch a lot so i can breathe)
Cycling (outside): 71.63 miles (average speed went down about half an mph from feb, but loooook at the miles)
Cycling (trainer): 19.92 miles (including one of the most miserable sessions ever on skippy)
Lifting: five sessions
Other: fail. but that's okay.

For not really doing much the first half of the month, the numbers for April turned out pretty well. May should see those numbers climb a lot higher, as we're three months out from Boulder 70.3.

We do have a few 12-week training programs for the half-IM distance and are considering following them, but I don't know if I feel like they're going to provide enough for me. Swimming twice a week with my craptastic swim right now does NOT feel like enough. That and those seven days a week training plans don't really work all that well with people who have non-traditional jobs (like both of us have). The plans have the off day as Monday ... well, what if Brandon can't work out at ALL on, say, a Wednesday because of a long day of flying? It happens. Then what? Therefore, we're probably going to have to tweak some stuff.

That, and the plans don't account for other races and we've got several (as you can see by the handy dandy sidebar).

Anyway, very glad to have salvaged April and am looking for good things out of May.

Monday, April 25, 2011

B: Tempo/TT

Coach Troy made me cry (as part of an asthma attack) today.

That is all.

In other news, besides the above, training is going well. I think. Hopefully.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Long time no chat

Hi everyone, remember me? The co-creator of this blog? Yeah, I'm still here.

Our sick troubles of February/March are well documented and the effect it had on our workouts for those two months does not need to be rehashed by me. Instead, I want to talk about what I want to do about it, and how I found my new motivation.

As T wrote in her last blog post, we basically were able to BS our way through a 5K in early April after getting very little sleep the night before, having run very very little in the previous month, etc. This should have served as a nice springboard to jumpstart our training and get us ready for the terrible tasks that lie before us in May, June, and July, right? Yeah, well, the excuses kept coming.

She and I were on a bike ride the other day and I expressed my thoughts, that I was thinking of pulling out of Boulder 70.3. Flushing 325 bucks down the drain, money that I saved up for a long time for this event and will clearly be the culmination of my triathlon career thus far. My simple justification for pulling out was that I don't think I can be ready by then and that I refuse to have a DNF on my record.

T and I spent nearly half an hour arguing back and forth, her position being that aside from the endurance right now, which will come back quickly, my body is in excellent physical shape (except the small gut I cannot shake :-() and that I, in no uncertain terms, am a proud, determined, angry son of a bitch who does not back down from a challenge.

I took her words to heart, thinking about it for awhile. Then the best thing that could have possibly happened to me.

I did a two-a-day workout.

On Thursday morning, I spent 30 minutes on the trainer swearing at Coach Troy (I really hate him and look forward to punching him in the face someday, followed by me kissing him for keeping me on my bike when the weather is cold) and then after T came home from doing some community service, we had a few hours to kill before I headed to the airport. So I asked her what she wanted to do, and she said lift. Off we went to the gym to execute the Mark Allen lifting plan, which we last did March 7th (eek!).

I felt alive and amazing.

This week has been my best week of training yet this year. I haven't run much this week (less than 6 miles), only one time cycling outside (stupid weather) and got in the pool once, but you know, the whole thing that is different is my attitude. My focus right now is laser-like. My determination is more then its ever been. Sure, I only have 3 months to get in 1/2 Ironman Shape. And someone one told me you can't will your way through a triathlon.

Bring it. I'm going down swinging. No matter what, I will go down swinging.

The final thing that has motivated me is a new song that is making the rounds on my iPod. It's by one of my favorite bands, Disturbed. It's called Warrior. Look at these lyrics:

I'm one with the warrior inside
My dominance can't be denied
Your entire world will turn
Into a battlefield tonight
As I look upon you
The warrior's eyes now

I can see the fear that will
Ensure my victory this time

Sometimes, the kicks in the ass that we need are unexpected. But dammit, a swift kick has turned this ship around.

As I said...bring it.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Race #1 of the Season: Goldy's Run 5K

This is a race we knew would be going on while we were in Minnesota for the Frozen Four. Kris and Mark were planning on doing the 10-miler and while we knew we were in no way up for that (due to being sick for freaking forever), we figured we could probably b.s. our way through the 5K.

Of course, it being the Frozen Four, I had a crapton of stuff going on that weekend ... including the INCH party on Friday night ... basically an industry party where all us college hockey journalists and other members of the media (and a few coaches and the like) get together in an informal atmosphere and drink for free.

Since this was the last Frozen Four I was going to be working ... ever ... I very well couldn't not drink with my coworkers and peers, could I? And since Brandon was there, the only polite thing for him to do would be to drink as well. However, since we had the race nagging us in the back of our minds, we didn't drink TOO much and got out of the bar relatively early and back to the hotel around midnight.

Kris and Mark called and woke us up at the way too early hour of 6am. We told ourselves it was going to be a game-day decision and I was all for running. Brandon was unsure the night before, but after waking up that early, he wasn't not running.

So, we got dressed, drove over to the UofM campus, grabbed Bruegger's for breakfast and headed over to the stadium to register. We parked and registered for the 5K. Soon after registering, we ran into Kris and Mark (and a few of their friends) and also learned that our friend Lindsey was running the 10-miler as well.

While waiting for the 5K to start, I quick snapped a few photos.

Goldy's Run
Kris and Mark waiting for the 10-miler to start.

Goldy's Run
Mark (red sunglasses; to the right of yellow shirt guy) getting ready to start in his wave.

Goldy's Run
Kris starting her wave.

Goldy's Run
Goldy the Gopher right before the start of our race.

At 8:10 (or whatever), we were off. Our race started a bit back from the 10-mile start so we started our watches late, but added on the 26 seconds or whatever on to the time after we finished.

It was a chilly morning, but we were able to keep a steady pace. The race took us around the University of Minnesota campus which for me, Ms. Tourist, was actually really nice as I got to see pretty much the whole thing. The race was also nice and relatively flat (and close to sea level, comparatively) which was nice for us Coloradoans.

We walked a tad through the water stations, but other than that, were able to push ourselves through - surprising, since neither of us had run much in the last month (as evidenced by the march totals i tallied below).

As we entered TCF Bank Stadium for our finish, I pulled away from Brandon to sprint across the line (as is my wont). As a result, I was able to snap a shot of Brandon finishing.

Goldy's Run
Brandon doing his thing crossing.

As we finished quicker than we thought (sub-30!!!), we had plenty of time to grab food and run to Kris and Mark's car where we stashed our stuff (they parked closer than we did) and to grab their jackets and stuff too before heading back into the stadium.

Goldy's Run
The stadium.

From a post of Kris and Mark's prior to the race, we had a general idea of when they'd be crossing the finish line. So, we positioned ourselves right by the finish line for prime viewing.

Goldy's Run
Mark crossing with a PR!

Goldy's Run
Kris crossing the second batch of timing mats with a PR and, as we found out later, a 3rd place AG finish!

Sooner than we expected, Lindsey also crossed with an AWESOME time though I regretfully don't have any pictures of it. Still, yay Lindsey!

After both Kris and Mark had time to cool off and stretch out a bit (and meet up with some of the 1490743240 people they knew running), we took a few more pictures.

Goldy's Run
The four of us.

Goldy's Run
The speedy couple.

Goldy's Run
Kris and Mark with a friend of theirs (whose name i unfortunately forgot).

From the stadium, we went to Caribou to talk and hang out with them and a friend of theirs, Gilby, before going to hang out with Brandon's old roommate Tim for a bit before heading to the FF final.

Race Thoughts:
I have no stats for this race since unfortunately, the 5K wasn't officially timed - only the 10-mile. So, the times you'll see to the right on the sidebar are from our watches (with the 26 additional seconds from the official start to the timing mats) added on.

Still, it was ultimately nice to know that our fitness level ... despite being sick and inactive for SO LONG ... was enough for us to b.s. our way through a 5K with a time that we're (or at least i'm) not usually able to get until later season.

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Makeovers of Bob and Melon

So ... three weeks ago now, we were back in Minnesota for the Frozen Four. Officially there to watch (and work, in my case) the games and unofficially to get Bob and Melon* (Brandon's bike) fit to us and fit with aeros.

We rolled into town Sunday night but bike time was Tuesday. So, that morning, we woke up and drove over to Gear West (which came highly recommended by many) right as they opened. Since it was slow, we were both able to get our fits done at essentially the same time by the awesome David (actually pro triathlete DKT. look him up.). Both of us needed tweaks, we both got aeros and I ended up needing a new seat stem. Brandon took more pictures than I, but here is what I ended up with:

Gear West Bike Fitting
Bikes in the car before being forever changed.

Gear West Bike Fitting
Brandon and Melon with the new aeros.

Gear West Bike Fitting
Bob being fit with aeros.

Gear West Bike Fitting
Trying out Bob.

Gear West Bike Fitting
All fit to Bob!

We got to test out the bikes on an actual ride with our friends Kris and Mark the next day which was awesome. We also learned that actually riding in aero can be a little scary - we were, as Mark said, "hobbly-wobbly." Something that we'll need to work on, I'm sure ...

4.6.2011 Ride
The four of us after our ride.

* Bob is my bike ... officially B.O.B. for Bucket O' Bolts. Melon is Brandon's ... got dubbed that way because of me. The new handlebar tape he put on was called "melon bubble" so, um, yeah. Bob and Melon.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

March Round-Up

This is definitely late, but better late than never, right?

In this case, never probably would have been better. See for yourself.

Running: 1.92 miles (average went up 16 seconds)(worst mileage total probably since i started running)
Swimming: never made it in the pool.
Cycling (outside): negative.
Cycling (trainer): 10.47 mi
Lifting: two sessions
Other: one run/walk (that is, aborted run that turned into a walk)

I tell myself it's okay, that I was sick for pretty much the whole month. Still, I can't lie to you all and say it still doesn't suck.

As for April, half-way in and the month hasn't been all that great. It's already been a lot better than March (obviously) and I think it's going to end up better than February as well. Lots of time to redeem myself and get a base of training somewhat started.

New post(s) coming soon - I have a race recap (i know!) as well as some pictures from when we did our bike upgrades.