Sunday, June 30, 2013

Riding the Prairie

Today we decided to go ride the prairie of Colorado, parking our car at the entrance of Aurora Reservoir where we do our open-water swims, and hopping on the bikes.  Riding the prairie gives you a lot of different ride conditions.  It's hot, there's very little shade, generally breezy, rolling hills, and little traffic.  There's also very little bike congestion, allowing you to stay in a groove.  It's a great place to train...and also very taxing mentally.

When you're riding away from the Rocky Mountains, Colorado is actually a very bland/blah state.  People think of Colorado as all pretty and scenic.  Yeah, go 15 miles east of Denver and it's as boring as Nebraska/Iowa/Kansas/most of Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.  Mile after mile, the road just stretches.  It's very tough mentally.  And solitary.

Let me just say that while I'm progressing nicely as an athlete right now, I still have a loooooooong way to go.  The rollers were very difficult today, my climbing was inefficient and my mental capacity broke down.  From what I hear, the IMAZ course is pretty boring, so to have to do that 3 times will be an extreme challenge mentally.  I know I'm up to the task, but I have to train my mind.  It's easy to do the Platte River Trail, where there's a lot of people and things to see.  The prairie?  Not so much.  So I think you know where I need to be. :-)

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Week Twenty-Five: 6/17-6/23

In which we make mistakes ... but as long as we learn from them, it's all good, right?

Monday, June 17: Stretching: 15:00
- getting out post-tri soreness
- shoulders, hip flexors, butt, calves
- Out of all the stretching I've done, this has felt some of the most rewarding. Still so, so sore, though.

Tuesday, June 18: Run: 3.37 mi in 31:48.81 - 9:26/mi
- Run CO pub run
- WINDY
- Had a recovery trainer session scheduled as well, but was way too exhausted to think about it when I got home from a long day at work. Got the run in and I'm happy. ALSO: new watch, as my Timex died. Again.

Wednesday, June 19: Swim: 400 yds in 7:21:46 - 1:50/100 yds
- two loops at Aurora
- cold made it a bit tricky
- second loop better than the first
- Was going to ride as well, but we decided to hold off with the heat and wind. So we grabbed lunch ... and lunch killed us ... felt nauseous and awful the rest of the day. Lesson ... learned.

Thursday, June 20: Bike: 13.39 mi in 40:13; avg cad 91; 19.98 mph
- 37.4 mph max
- MX12 over-unders set
- handled it this time ...
- Moved around my workouts and decided on this rather than Troy - glad I did. Lasered in my focus and killed the session.

Friday, June 21: Swim: 1600m in 36:10.72 - 2:15/100m
- 100m, 200m, 300m, 400m, 500m, 100m
- snack of marble loaf beforehand
- paused after 50m in the 500m set due to mucus
Run: 1.69 mi in 20:00 - 11:49/mi
- aborted MX12 roly-polies set
- hills, they kill me
- someday i'll be able to make it through this set ...
- Disappointed I didn't get a full run in, but I'm learning and exposing weaknesses in my failure which is always a good thing. Not a good thing - getting food anxiety again. I think as I'm starting to make gains in my physical appearance, my brain starts going haywire ... which is NOT good.

Saturday, June 22: Bike: 16.28 mi in 1:00:03; avg cad 86; 16.27 mph
- 25.7 mph max
- part of the Spinervals Tempe ride DVD
- hot; struggled
- The stale air and heat factor hurt a lot. This is mentally tough and I realized the only time I've made it through the entire way was when Brandon was around. Can't do this one alone, unfortunately.

Sunday, June 23: Run: 3.95 mi in 38:00.49 - 9:37/mi
- amended out-and-back
- hot; waited too long to run
- bad upper ab cramp made me stop
- Would have liked to do more, but not to be. That run was horribly painful and miserable. Wanted to puke for most of that run.

Oh the learning experiences of this week. What did T learn this week, class? Here's the rundown:
- Golden Corral is ALWAYS a bad idea. NEVER a good one.
- stretching is the most wonderful thing on the planet.
- cold open water swims are best approached with low expectations. What I didn't mention in the workout log is that my lips actually turned slightly blue in the water.
- I need a LOT more hill training in my running. Not necessarily for IMAZ, but because it'll make me a stronger runner.
- While I still get food anxiety, I can at least notice it and recognize it ... combating it is still tricky though, unfortunately.
- I shouldn't do the Tempe ride DVD alone because I'm never going to be alone on that course. I should also probably get a fan/open the patio door for that one ...
- It's summer. I need to hydrate more. DUH. Probably most of my issues ...

Weekly training time: 4:08:39
Weekly training mileage: 39.89 mi
Yearly training time: 101:37:20
Yearly training mileage: 728.82 mi

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Race #3 of the Season: Boulder Sprint Triathlon

Formerly known as the 5430 Sprint Triathlon, of course.

I'm not sure even how I want to write this recap; I feel like I've recapped SO. MANY. RACES. by now, that you all essentially already know how this goes for me. Still, there might be new readers (*waves*), so I'll do this.

On Saturday, we headed up to Boulder for the race expo and packet pick-up. We also wanted to hop in the res for our first open water swim of the year and wanted to hear a bit more about the new swim start. The OWS went well and regarding the swim start, we learned that we'd essentially figure it out best the next morning. So be it. However, we unfortunately learned that due to construction on the Diagonal Highway and Jay Road (the usual turn back into the res on the bike course), the bike was being shortened from 17.2 miles to 15 and there was a short section we'd have to ride on carpet/rubber mats. Greeeat.

The course shortening also proved how anal we can sometimes be as triathletes, knowing that we can't quite compare our times to the previous years properly. Stupid shortened bike.

Race Day

Thanks to the BolderBOULDER mishap, we knew we wanted to wake up with plenty of time to get to Boulder and into transition. Trans opened at 5am and if we got into the parking lot by 4:45, all the better. That meant, of course, a 3am wake-up call. Seeing as we packed 95% of our stuff into the car the night before, though, there wasn't much to do - get dressed, eat, prep water bottles. We got on the road and made it in time for both of us to do a Boulder Tri Series first - first on our racks in transition.
 photo boulder_sprint2_zps52a359c9.jpg
 photo boulder_sprint3_zpsb6f3d8b9.jpg
Oh it's nice to be early ...

We set everything up, did our pre-race business, Brandon took a short spin on the bike, I ate my sandwich ... and we left a little early to get in some more swimming as a warm-up. I did three loops of the warm-up area, which might be my biggest ever. I felt really comfortable by that third loop, though, so it was well worth it.

The Swim:

As I mentioned earlier, they changed the swim wave start this year. Instead of going by age group, you would self-seed yourself based on your (fastest?) 100 yd time. I went conservative and plopped myself in the 1:50-2:00 group ... which was fairly accurate. I probably could have seeded myself in the 1:40-1:50 group, but meh.

What I didn't like was that instead of an in-water start, your time started as soon as you crossed under the arch so any time you spent acclimating yourself to the water was added to your time. For someone like me ... that sucks. That being said, I know quite a few tris are like that, so I really shouldn't complain. I've been spoiled with my in-water starts ... and quite happy that way.

Anyway, the new swim waves were frustrating in that you could never get open space. I felt I was always within reach of at least one other swimmer and many times, I had to thread my way through groups of three or four other swimmers. I felt like I got slowed down a lot to that as it forced me to constantly sight and re-sight.

Besides, that, though, I felt like I was swimming pretty well. I got as close to the shore as I could before waddling out and up through the arch.

Time: 20:07 (rate: 2:31; rank: 865th overall; 65th division)

T1:

As opposed to years past, I was actually in a better position in terms of the bike out, which I think actually helped this time be speedier as opposed to years past. I still always feel like I'm fumbling around, though ...

Time: 2:39 (rank: 270th; 22nd)

The Bike:

I was really happy we got up here a week or so beforehand to pre-ride the course. It helped me come up with a race strategy which I think really helped.

I pushed it slightly on 51st (leaving the res) until the main ascent started and then shifted into a relatively easy gear and bumped my cadence up into the 90s and stayed there for pretty much the first five miles. This allowed me to keep a steady pace on Jay and the first, crappy part of 36. Then, when the downhill came, I could open it up and kept it pretty much open until the turn on 63rd.

The only problem I ran into was with shifting while making the transition from downhill to uphill. I was not as smooth as I could have/should have been as a few times, I shifted too early which caused my legs to go herky jerky. This stretched out an ... adductor? part of my groin? which hurt a bit after the race, but it was nothing that a night of compression tights couldn't fix. This is something definitely to work on for the future.

63rd is the rollers. They sucked a bit more in the race than they did on our training ride, but not much worse. They definitely felt like they went by quicker. Then on to the Diagonal for barely any time at all (yay) and the turn off to the rubber mats (boo). Speed dropped way down on those and I unfortunately got a bit clumped up with some other riders (the other unintended consequence of the swim start - lots of people out on the bike course at the same time, leading to (illegal) draft packs) and could never regain any speed.

The new rerouted course took us past part of the run course and I could just see Brandon and yelled at him, but he was a bit too far gone to actually see/acknowledge me.

I obviously took it slower as we were riding past the runners, but the people around me acted like they were the only ones there, as a woman in front of me took a wide turn into the dismount area, making me very glad I was aware of her to the point where I DIDN'T crash into her. *sigh* Off the bike and back into trans.

Time: 48:56 (rate: 18.4 mph; rank: 806th; 45th)

T2:

This time, unfortunately, was slower due to being further away from the bike in/run out than in years past. Dangit. Also: may not want to BodyGlide feet for 5Ks and would like to experiment using TriSlide instead for other distances, as I feel it may be quicker.

Time: 2:12 (rank: 831st; 55th)

The Run:

I ran out of transition and a good bit of the run before needing to walk. The whole run was a general run/walk pattern. My legs felt a little leaden for probably about the first mile and my lungs didn't really want to come around. I saw Brandon about 3/4 of the way through the first mile and said hi as he was on his way back.

I stopped at the first water station to walk some and get water. I don't believe I drank any; it pretty much all went over my head.

The second mile went slightly better as I tried to run when as I could. I decided to take in my gel as I entered back through the aid station (better to take it when water is around) which I don't think ended up being a good idea. It helped a bit immediately, but I think it also helped contribute to me wanting to puke near the end.

My legs felt stronger as the run went on - I regret being a moron and stopping my watch after the swim instead of just taking a split  so I could have at least guessed my mile splits (not that it mattered; my watch died as it was) - and I'm pretty sure I may have neg-split it, but alas, I know not for sure. There were a few people who I was going back and forth with near the end of the run including some old guy in Hokas - he tried passing me but I surged ahead of him with a vengeance as we reached the turn to the finish, sprinting past him and about four other people in the chute. I crossed the line, about wanting to die.

Time: 30:45 (rate: 9:56/mi; rank: 800th; 55th)

Overall Stats:
Time: 1:44:39
50/87 division (F30-34)
240/416 female
783/1073 overall

This is all confirming me as a bottom quarter racer. Woo. In terms of my rankings last year, I did move up slightly in the overall standings, though, so yay for that.

 photo boulder_sprint4_zpse054ecc3.jpg
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Rocking our new MX12 kits!

And, since we did it last year, let's play the comparison game!

This year:
Swim: 20:07; 2:31/100m
T1: 2:39
Bike: 48:56; 18.4mph
T2: 2:12
Run: 30:45; 9:56/mi
Overall Time: 1:44:39

2012:
Swim: 21:11; 2:39/100m
T1: 3:09
Bike: 59:22; 17.4mph
T2: 2:03
Run: 31:15; 10:05/mi
Overall Time: 1:57:00

2011:
Swim: 21:32; 2:53/100m
T1: 3:10
Bike: 1:00:42; 17.0mph
T2: 2:01
Run: 31:14; 10:04/mi
Overall Time: 1:58:39

My swim continues to get better which is GOOD because I have put a lot of work into improving the damn thing.

T1 I think we can put on transition location.

The bike is skewed due to the shorter length, but I do believe my average speed wouldn't have dropped a whole mile per hour over the two miles that got chopped off, so we'll just say that's improving too. I mostly thank the new bike for this.

T2: see my note for T1.

What's funny is I keep wanting a faster run ... and I chopped off a whole 30 seconds this year which is actually quite significant if you think about it. Improvement is happening; I just have to put it into perspective.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Week Twenty-Four: 6/10-6/16

Week 24, in which my body revolts.

Monday, June 10: Stretching: 15:00
- neck, shoulders, calves and butt the tightest
- seriously, neck
- I love having my "off days" be stretch days. I don't know how much I'm going to repeat myself with this, either, but OMG STRETCHING I LOVE YOU.

Tuesday, June 11: Run: 2.9 mi in 28:31.20 - 9:49/mi
- Run CO pub run
- in a grass skirt and leis in 90+ degree weather
- this hurt. a lot.
- tried adidas boost shoes - BAD IDEA. feet KILLED
- Very fun run, but conditions (and tester shoes) made it utterly miserable. Also tried to nap beforehand - not a good idea. Also attempted and OWS at Aurora - still a bit too chilly ...

Wednesday, June 12: Off: exhausted
- Horrible, horrible day at work left me physically and emotionally drained. Tried to muster up energy and motivation, but failed horribly.

Thursday, June 13: Off: exhausted
- This week is not only making me hate my job, it's also showing me how beat up and broken I truly am. I can't get enough sleep and can't find energy.

Friday, June 14: Walking: 25:00
- to and from dinner
- woo, activity
- SO GLAD this was my last day of work this week. It's been a horrible week, but it's also been a fantastic learning experience of what I need to try to avoid happening later this summer as IM training truly ramps up ... because if how I handled this/how my body reacted is an indication of things to come, I'm in for a loooong summer/fall.

Saturday, June 15: Swim: 500 yds in 7:27.31 - 1:39/100yds
- two OW swim loops at Boulder
Bike: 1.6 mi in 7:01; avg cad 56, 13.68 mph
- 26.9 mph max
- quick loop around the block
Run: .24 mi in 2:11.96 - 9:10/mi
- shake out run
- Workouts to get the blood pumping, try out open water and test out our new MX12 kits!

Sunday, June 16: Triathlon: Boulder Sprint Tri in 1:44:39
- .5 mi swim in 20:07 - 2:30/100m
- 15 mi bike in 48:56 - 18.39 mph, avg cad 85; 33.1 mph max
- 3.1 mi run in 30:45 - 9:53/mi
- T1 in 2:39, T2 in 2:12
- A race that was better once I put it into perspective. Wasn't the biggest fan of the new swim start and made some stupid mistakes on the bike with shifting. Still, a technical race PR, so I'll take it.

This week was frustrating in that I took most of it off ... like I usually do the week before a race. I know it was an "easy" week, but I did NOT want to take that much time off. Still, as I had in my Friday notes, it was a great learning experience for me, and that is valuable. I'll also go more into detail about the race here shortly ...

Weekly training time: 3:04:59
Weekly training mileage: 23.6 mi
Yearly training time: 97:28:43
Yearly training mileage: 688.93 mi

First Triathlon of the Season: Boulder Sprint Triathlon

Sunday marked the first tri of the season.  A tri I've done numerous times before.  It marked my first time tri-ing with the new bike, and would hopefully show the hard work I've put in thus far.

Earlier in the week, we received our new kits from MaccaX, our triathlon group.  We ordered these kits much earlier in the year through MX12, and while Champion Systems jerked around the group quite a bit, they finally arrived.  We tried them on, and we were both pretty impressed with the fit.  I'm not going to lie, it's pretty cool to have a triathlon kit and be part of a team.  We both were looking forward to representing our new team properly up in Boulder.

The day before the race, we checked in and did packet pick-up.  Due to construction, they would have to shorten the race by 2 miles on the bike.  This meant we wouldn't be able to actually get our proper numbers and compare them to the previous two years.  While we were doing the same race, we weren't doing the same distance.  Total bummer.  Also, the swim start was changing due to USAT attempting to make swimming safer for everyone and to make it more appealing to newbies.  Instead of just going in waves decided by your age group, they now seed you based on your best 100 yard swim time.  So in other words, you put yourself where you feel you should be.  Both T and I had no idea where we should put ourselves...we don't swim in a yard pool, we swim in a meter pool.  We haven't done any open water this year, so how do we know?  We decided to see what the waves would be the following morning and go from there.

Later that day, we tested out the kits by doing a very short spin and a very short run.  Capped off the night by eating our usual pre-race meal of breakfast food.  We came back home, packed up all our stuff, and then grabbed a bit of sleep.

Race Morning
I swear every race we do the same thing.  Wake up and wonder why we're doing this.  We did our usual breakfast ritual and got out of the house about 4:10 am, with the goal to get up to Boulder right when transition opened.  With traffic light and good weather, we hit it no problem.

Pumped up the bike tires, grabbed our trans bags, and headed up to transition.  It was just opened and due to that, we both secured GREAT spots on the bike rack.  My new Adamo bike saddle allows it to be hung by the back of the seat, which is just cool!  Yes, I'm a nerd.


I got my trans area set up and did my usual pre-race ritual of killing time.  I also took my bike out for a very short spin, as I wanted to make 1 million percent sure that my cadence was actually going to work.  T and I both wanted to get in the water a bit earlier to get a bigger open water warm up than we usually do, so we hopped in our wetsuits earlier than normal.

We walked down to the water and waited a few more minutes before hopping in, so we wouldn't risk getting too could before the race.  Hopping in the water with a few others, we got in a loop.  I could tell T was struggling with her breathing, but being that we have VERY little open-water experience this year, it was to be expected.  As for me, I was feeling pretty good.  We got in two more loops and called it a solid warm-up.  T said she was feeling a lot better and the longer warm-up did her some good.  Then came time to figure out where we were going to swim.

See, I swim in a metered pool.  And to ask someone to line themselves up in their fastest open-water 100 yard time...well that's just tricky.  I mean, I never am sprinting 100 yards in the open water.  I use open-water swims to test my endurance.  Not my speed.  So, being that it was the first race of the season, and a whole new format, we opted to do the conservative thing and go a bit slower.  T hopped in the 1:50-2 minute corral and I went for the 1:40-1:50 corral.

The National Anthem played and then the corrals started filtering into the water.  Soon my corral went, and after stepping on the timing mat, I went under the arch, hit the water, and my race began.

The Swim
I haven't done a start like this, from the beach, in a long time.  I'm so used to the shallow water/deep water start, it took me for a bit of a surprise.  Instead of doing the standard dolphin dive, I more or less waded until the water was chest deep and then took off in a crawl.

Right away, I could tell that I was faster than a lot of people in my wave.  I spent the first 100-200 of the swim just finding some open space, which was nearly impossible.  The swimmers were too clustered together.  Although I never got hit or punched, I definitely was on top of some people.  Strangely enough, my swim got disrupted by this.  I'd come right on top of someone backstroking or resting, have to nearly come to a stop, and pick it back up.  Not a fun way to swim.

When I made the turn back to shore, I thought I'd finally get a free space.  I was wrong.  There was still no open water space, and I was still swimming over people.  I realized that they had released the waves too close together and unless you were in one of the first two waves, there was just no chance for that open space.  I didn't care at this point; the shoreline was in sight and I was nearly done.  I knew I had held back quite a bit in the water, but I didn't stress over it.

I climbed out of the water, ran under the arch, and made my way back to transition.  Looked down at my watch, was not surprised at the time, but not thrilled with it either.  I'd say over a minute of it can be blamed purely on the swim start.

Swim time - 16:54 (2:06 per 100)

T1
I felt like I was moving really slow in T1.  Methodical, I guess would be the better way to put it.  But I didn't forget anything, had my breath under me, and was ready to head out on the bike.

T1 time - 2:48

The Bike
This was my first race with the new bike, and let's just say it did not disappoint.  Of course, you can ask the question "did the bike do it or did you?"  I'd honestly say it was a bit of both.  Having the new bike has made me want to work harder on bike training...but the new bike is obviously faster...chicken meet egg?

Anyway, coming out of the res, you deal with some rollers for the first mile and a half.  If you aren't anticipating them, you'll get out of breath real quick and have to deal with that for the next 5 miles.  So instead of attacking these rollers, it's best to spin in a high cadence, get some hydration in, and not worry about speed yet.  That's the theory, anyway.

And I stuck to it.  And guess what?  It worked!  I passed a lot of people leaving the res, made the turn onto J road, and continued to climb.  Like I think I've mentioned before, the first 4 miles of this ride are all solid elevation gain, about 300 total feet.  You have to keep your cadence high to deal with it.  I was maintaining a cadence in the high 80's-low 90's, and while I was no longer passing a lot of riders, I was feeling good.  

When I started the descent, I threw it into one of my lowest gears and got ready to settle in for some consistent speed.  My legs were responding, my lungs were responding, and I wasn't even thinking about anything.  I just rode.  I just pedaled.  Maintaining a speed of 27-28 mph for at least 4 miles, I threw down the gauntlet and just flew down the road.  It was awesome.  Just awesome.  I knew I was having a good bike; I didn't know HOW good yet but was quite frankly excited to see the results.

Turning back onto the diagonal road, just short of the res, I saw the turn where the course was shortened.  Carpet/rubber mats were thrown down over the gravel, for about 800 feet.  It was, more or less, not fun to ride on.  Furthermore, it made drafting/safe riding nearly impossible.  I was clustered with about 5 other dudes, and had we not coordinated, we might have had an accident.  Boo.

I spun my legs out for the last 1/2 mile, just feeling awesome.  Ran back into transition and got ready to run.

Bike time - 45:02 (20.0 mph)

T2
T2 was simple, and again, methodical.  It took me awhile to put on my socks; I have no idea why.

T2 time - 2:01

The Run
I ran out of transition and felt okay, but not great.  I sure didn't feel spry like I was hoping.  But I kept putting one foot in front of the other.

This run at Boulder is a grind.  You run out from transition for about 1/2 mile, then out on this dirt dusty road next to the res.  You see the entire line of runners in front of you nearly all the way to the turn around point.  And being that it's a straight up out and back, you keep looking for the turn around point, but it never quite seems to get there.  So it's a grind on you mentally.  There's also 0 shade on the run, which 2 years ago resulted in me getting 2nd degree sunburn in the 1/2 Ironman...

Anyway, I kept moving steadily.  I knew I wasn't moving all that fast, but it was steady.  I hit the mile point and started to feel pretty good, yet hesitated to pick it up.  There was still quite a bit to go, and my legs just weren't really responding to speedier work in the run.  

I hit the turn around point and felt happy, knowing that every step I took was a step towards the finish.  Again, I attempted to pick it up, but my legs just were not responding.  I wondered if I went too hard on the bike, but I didn't think so.  Instead, I chalked it up to lack of brick training this year, which is not really THAT big of deal, yet.  Something to think about for my next race.  

Coming back in, I saw T running out.  The kit definitely makes us stand out.  I shouted some encouragement to her and realized she wasn't too far behind me, so I knew she was having a good race too.  A girl and I were chatting briefly coming back in, and then I left her behind and was finally able to pick it up.

I hit the finish line, breathed a big sigh of relief, and got my medal, towel, and some water.  First race in the books. :-)

Run time - 30:02 (9:40 per mile)

Post-Race
We grabbed some oranges and pretzels and waited to see our results.  I knew I beat last year's time, but it's not quite accurate due to the bike being shorter.  Regardless, my time was pretty good (1:36:47).  Aside from the swim, I improved in all the other disciplines in terms of speed from last year.  

There are a lot of things to work on, and there's a long way to go until Ironman.  But there's a lot of positivity to take away from this race.  I'm very optimistic about the rest of the season. :-)

Monday, June 10, 2013

Week Twenty-Three: 6/3-6/9

Another week down, and another good week. Had to shift a few things around and adjust (as you'll see), but I got everything in, and that's what matters.

Monday, June 3: Stretching: 17:00
- oh god i hurt
- this felt really, really, REALLY good
- These stretching sessions show how beat up I am, but they also are truly restorative. I'm glad these are being scheduled in regularly - at least twice a week.

Tuesday, June 4: Bike: 17.18 mi in 57:32; avg cad 78; 17.92 mph
- 32.3 mph max
- 5430 course pre-ride
- first five miles still suck ass
Run: 3.37 mi in 31:43.41 - 9:24/mi
- Run CO pub run
- new route again
- tried my hardest to keep it "easy"
- First triathlete tramp stamp sunburn from the bike. Not as initially long as we would have liked, but great to figure out shifting and gearing for our race. Run ... is about standard right now.

Wednesday, June 5: Lift: 34:00
- 3/20 ball extensions; 3/10/10 back extensions; 3/10 captain's chair; 1,2/10/60,70 lat pulldowns; 2,1/10/10,12 incline db flies; 3/10 tricep dips; 1,2/10/120, 140 rotary calf; 3/10/90 angled leg press
- decent lift
- foam-rolled beforehand
- Original plan was to get in our first OWS of the season, but temps in the low-50s and rain aren't really wise to swim in ... especially because the water at Aurora is generally cold. So this was a good alternative.

Thursday, June 6: Run: 5.43 mi in 48:55 - 9:00/mi
- MX12 treadmill set - intermediate
- a lot more difficult today
- Was supposed to do the recovery trainer set, too, but time was NOT on my side. I figure I got in the more important workout, though, and am okay with that. Besides, I can fit that trainer set in later this week.

Friday, June 7: Swim: 800m in 17:05.08 - 2:08/100m
- 8x100m
- this was rough
- Slipped on the plan today. Plan was to do 1600 (now doing that Sunday), but I got home from work and just zoned. I can't even describe it - it's like I lost time. Might be a sign I need sleep and rest and a lot of it ...

Saturday, June 8: Run: 6 mi in 1:02:12 - 10:22/mi
- kinda Run CO Saturday AM run
- took it easy
Bike: 8.12 mi in 33:16; avg cad 74; 14.65 mph
- 26.0 mph max; 153 max cad
- Spinervals 23.0 Time Saver I: workout A: technique
- legs hurt
- Another good, solid day. Cranky a little that it wasn't just a run/stretch day, but meh. Wore compression tights at work this evening.

Sunday, June 9: Swim: 1600m in 36:12.86 - 2:15/100m
- 100m, 200m, 300m, 400m, 300m, 200m, 100m
- arms did not start feeling good until 500m in and then started dying at 1300m
Bike: 17.34 mi in 1:04:54; avg cad 61; 16.03 mph
- 29.2 mph max
- gym, 470 trail, CC trail, back
- actually took a ride easy for once!
Stretching: 13:00
- That was another huge training day - I think the tights helped a lot. That being said, the stretching was my favorite part of the day.

This upcoming week gets to be marginally easier, mostly because we have our first race of the season (5430 Sprint) on Sunday. Yay.

Weekly training time: 6:55:50
Weekly training mileage: 58.93 mi
Yearly training time: 94:23:44
Yearly training mileage: 665.33 mi

3 weeks in and all is well

We're 3 weeks into IM training.  Things are good.

While the numbers are not huge in terms of volume yet, we're not looking for giant numbers at this time.  Consistency is key.  We need to be hitting our workout goals but not be worried about putting in the volume yet.  Trust me, that will come.  I promise you.  For now, the base needs to be built, and we have 3 weeks left in that before our 20 week plan kicks in.

Over these last 3 weeks, I have yet to miss a scheduled workout.  I have only shifted things around once or twice, and still have haven't missed anything.  Consistency.

The big thing I'm noticing is my attitude shift.  Normally, I'd be patting myself on the back, taking some rest, and probably rewarding myself.  No, not this time around.  I'm proud of what I've done so far, but there is a long long long way to go.  Complacency will crush you in this game.  

Stay tuned; our first tri of the season is coming up this weekend. :-)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Week Twenty-Two: 5/27-6/2

Week two of IM training brought another decent week. Started with a race and went from there. There was one thing I would have changed, but I'll get to that.

Monday, May 27: Run: BolderBOULDER - 10K in 59:12 - 9:32/mi
- this hurt a lot
- gastro hell
Stretching: 10:00
- oh god this felt good
- Well, didn't get sub-59:00 in BB which was my goal, but I left everything out there. Also, my butt is still unhappy and has been since this AM. Not that I want to make excuses, but when the butt ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.

Tuesday, May 28: Run: 3.18 mi in 29:59 - 9:25/mi
- Run CO pub run
- oh god this hurt
- wasn't as bad as i feared, but i think i'd still like to avoid running consecutive days in a row
- Run notes sum it up well. This hurt, but it was a good lesson to learn that if necessary, I can run back-to-back days. Still rather not, though.

Wednesday, May 29: Bike: 21.01 mi in 1:20:57; avg cad 68; 15.57 mph
- 29.4 mph max
- CCSP to Cherry Creek trail
- avoided the rain!
- Been raining off and on all day, so was hoping we didn't have to trainer it. Luckily, we hit a pocket of clear weather and only got sprinkled on a little. Legs were definitely a bit sore, but overall, good ride today.

Thursday, May 30: Lift: 30:00
- 3/20 ball crunches; 3/10/10 back extensions; 3/10/120 w.a. dips; 3/10/75 leg curl; 3/10 captain's chair; 3/10/5 lat db raises; 3/10/10 bosu goblet squats
- yay, "off day"
- gym a little more busy than I'd like
- Little bored with this today; heart not truly in this. That being said, glad I still got it in.

Friday, May 31: Swim: 1200m in 27:12.09 - 2:16/100m
- 2x100m, 800m, 2x100m
- shoulders a bit sore
- kind of forced the longer distance; didn't feel good until it was almost done
- Getting to the point where I'm generally a bit sore every day. Not debilitating by any means, just ... sore. I think this means I'm back in the swing of things ...

Saturday, June 1: Run: 5.41 mi in 48:55 - 9:02/mi
- MX12 treadmill set - intermediate
- stepped it up finally - woo!
Stretching: 10:00
- i needed this
- This workout was a little later than I would have liked, but hey, I got it in. Also bumped up the difficulty, which makes me happy.

Sunday, June 2: Swim: 900m in 19:56.34 - 2:12/100m
- 100m, 200m, 300m, 200m, 100m
- this felt slow
Bike: 22.47 mi in 1:23:53; avg cad 84; 16.07 mph
- 27.5 mph max
- Spinervals 22.0 - Timetrialpalooza
- wanted to vomit at one point
- legs took a long while to get going
- Long, solid day. Regret waiting until so late in the afternoon, though, because now I seriously don't want to cook. Also, dead.

Mileage-wise, this was a bigger week, but time-wise, it was just under last week which in theory, should not have happened since IM plans are typically a three-week build and then a one week rest. Therefore, this week should have been bigger than last. Since we know this, we're going to make sure this upcoming week is bigger than both weeks.

Weekly training time: 6:40:04
Weekly training mileage: 59.57 mi
Yearly training time: 87:27:54
Yearly training mileage: 596.40 mi

Monday, June 3, 2013

May Round-Up

This month could have been so so so so sosososososo much better. That being said, it was salvaged nicely. Read on ...

Running: 34.25 mi
Swimming: 8000m (4.97 mi)
Cycling: 121.93 mi
Lifting: five sessions
Other: a lot of walking, quite a bit of stretching, a tiny bit of basketball and a chunk of yard work

My running numbers could have been a lot higher and should have been ... if only I hadn't spent half the month running only 3 miles a week. *shakes head*

That being said, I'm pretty happy with my swimming and I'm starting to build up bike mileage again, which is GOOD. I didn't lift as much as I would have liked, but I'm scheduling at least a lift a week into our training because I know it's good for us. I'm also happy there was some more general non-tri related activity. That's going to be a trend that'll be tough to continue, but I'm hoping we can. June, for example, should have some dancing in it thanks to a wedding we'll be attending.

Keep following along for June's training craziness ...

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Race #2 of the Season: BolderBOULDER

Haven't wanted to write this recap for whatever reason, but since I now need to also do the May round-up as well as the week 22 recap shortly ... I figured I best get on this chronologically.

This was the fourth year in a row running the BolderBOULDER. Every year I'd gotten a PR. I was hoping for one this year, too.

As Brandon mentioned in his recap, we left a little later in the morning than we should have (though we thought we were fine. by now, you'd think we'd know what time to leave for boulder, but apparently not) and it was a little stressful parking and getting to the Starbucks in the Twenty-Ninth Street shopping center. However, I've come a long way in learning to control the things I can, and letting go of the things I can't. I knew we'd still get parking in time to go off for our wave and drop off everything at the FedEx Mobile Locker. If we missed Starbucks, we missed Starbucks.

It turned out, obviously, that we had plenty of time to do everything. I should mention at this point that something seemed to be slightly off in the gastrointestinal system. I have a nervous colon as it is on race morning, but this? This wasn't good. I pooped (once or twice; can't remember) before I left the house, pooped again at Starbucks and my stomach still didn't seem to be happy after that. I finished about 2/3rds of my tall iced coffee and probably less than half of my multigrain bagel.

We dropped off our stuff at the FedEx Mobile Lockers (SO glad they kept those, even in the aftermath of Boston) and got in our wave with plenty of time. I sort of felt like I needed to poop again, but at that point, there was no time - we were off.

(though i didn't stop, i will say that the first bank of porta-potties we passed were very tempting, but the competitor in me said screw it. thankfully, i didn't come to regret that.)

Mile one felt good, but it ended up being way too fast. The first K was hit in 5:11; yeah, no way can I run a 51:00 10K these days. Or ever. Noticing that time, we slowed it down and hit the mile marker point in 8:49.55.

Mile two was slower, but we were still managing okay. I still hadn't found my legs, either, which was frustrating. 9:24.73 as we hit the mat.

Mile three is the shitty mile. I say this in every BB10K recap because it's TRUE every year. Also fairly typical is that it was our only mile that wasn't sub-10: 10:10.63. Some year I'll shrink that down ...

Mile four has the highest point in the course but is otherwise unremarkable. I was walking more and overheating (and starting to take in a bit of water, but mostly on my head), but I was keeping a close on eye on our K splits and we were still on pace for sub-60:00, which at this point, was all I cared about. We brought the pace back down, though - 9:33.25.

Mile five saw Brandon with another shoulder issue. He had one about this point last year - right before we made the turn on to Pearl and did again this year, but with a different shoulder. We slowed down a bit and I got behind him to try and work it out. I like to think I was successful enough to help get him through the race. For me, it was all about grinding it out - 9:37.02.

Mile six (and i'm guessing the .2 as well) is Folsom up to the finish. Brandon wanted to run it all - I couldn't breathe well enough to do it. I felt like this entire last mile was me just trying to stave off an asthma attack, running at the limits of my lungs. I managed to run up Folsom, slowing down on the descent into the stadium to try and breathe and then just forced it into Folsom Field. It was a reversal of roles in that Brandon took off and I couldn't catch him. I ran as hard as I could and once again, almost puked. I crossed the line with my final split as 9:55.71. My watch said 59:15, which would have been a one second PR if it held true. Luckily, the official time gave me a bit of a cushion.

We left the stadium hurting, got our little commemorative lunch bags of snacks, picked up our stuff from the mobile locker (changing into glorious flip-flops), checked out the expo, stopped for more coffee and went home.

Final Stats:
Time: 59:12.87
Pace: 9:31/mi
Overall Rank: 11372/43500 (top 26%)
Gender Rank: 3757/23293 (top 16%)
Division Rank: 147/611 (F29)(top 24%)

Although I PRed, I was not happy with this. I felt like I could have done a lot better. I missed the goal I had set for myself this year (sub-59) and I think maybe I could have done that. I know that the potential was definitely there. I'm not sure if I should sign up for another stand-alone 10K to try to hit it, either. I also have to tell myself that in the grand scheme of things, this was actually an early season race for me. My main race this year is in mid-November - I haven't come close to peaking and when I think of it that way, I guess I have to be happy with this result.