Sunday, January 31, 2010


Some weeks are just about getting through and doing what needs to be done.  Between work, appointments, life commitments, and training, this was one of them. 


Meetings meetings meetings.  Kicking off new projects.  Meeting many deadlines.  Trying to finish up my self-assessment for 2009 on time.  Oh yes, it’s performance review time.  Ick.


2 hard bike trainer sessions.  I felt strong on them, I think this means all the high wattage workouts are paying off.  2 hard runs, one with increasing speeds over a certain distance, one running hilly loops at increasing HR zones.  These should pay off in my coming running races.  3 days at masters swim.  And at the end of Saturday’s workout, we did a timed 100 and I swam my fastest 100 ever.  It’s SO close to a barrier that has previously felt impossible for me, just a few seconds away.  A few seconds, my friends and coach were quick to point out, that I could easily gain with a dive off the blocks and flip-turns.  Oh, did I mention I committed to doing my first swim meet in March?  Oy.  Time to work on those turns and learn how to dive.


Saw my dentist this week.  As always, I’m maintaining, fighting the good fight against a doomed set of gums, but things were looking OK. 

Hit a few yoga classes for some deep stretching.  Lunges and squats have got my hamstrings and thigh muscles so tight I was cringing when walking for a few days. 

Introduced my mother to Lululemon.  She’s doomed.  Also informed her she’ll be doing the 5K race with me in March. *snicker*

Saw the Sharks crush the Wild last night.  That was nice.

Worked hard to exhaust the dogs after being trapped in the house through over a week of rain.  Took Stanley along for the first 2 warmup miles of my hilly Saturday run.  Took everyone to the park for several fetch sessions.  Walked a few miles on the Los Gatos Creek Trail this morning, including two stops at the fenced dogpark so they could run around like wild things.  Baths for muddy icky smelly dogs after all that.  They are finally tired.




Training totals for January 25-31:
Swim: 5400 yards
Bike: 50.4 miles
Run: 16.9 miles
Strength: 0.5 hour
Total time: 9.25 hours

A hard 3-week block is over and it’s finally time for a lighter week!  My body will appreciate the rest.

Off to spend some quality time with my foam roller…

January Totals:
Swim: 18,460 yards
Bike: 194 miles
Run: 66.4 miles
Strength: 3 hours

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

In Need Of A Name

In May, I have two race weekends back-to-back (Olympic-long sprint).  The Olympic is an A race for me, the sprint is for-fun since it’s a local favorite.  In the end, I decided to do it as a relay with two of my favorite guys, Jeff and Nigel.

But, dear Internets, we need a team name.  Suggestions being thrown around right now include things like  “Friends With Benefits” (WTF?), “The Bald and The Beautiful,” “Chest Nuts,” and “I’ve Got a Rash.”  Suffice it to say, I suggested that my lovely bloggy peeps could provide more ideas…

And so here are the teammates, that you must manage to somehow typecast into one title…

The Swimmer:


Nigel.  Swims like a fish, bikes like a sweaty Englishman, runs like…wait, I’ve never actually seen Nigel run.  Wants the swim leg of the relay so he can start drinking earlier than the rest of us.  Prone to embarrassing outbursts in quiet restaurants and owner of a shamelessly unfiltered mouth.

The Cyclist:


Jeff.  Swims like a wounded buffalo, bikes like a mountain goat, runs like a cheetah (fast, for short distances).  Wants the bike leg because he once spent 20 minutes swimming the 400 yards of his only sprint triathlon.  No, really, because he doesn’t want Nigel to be too many beers ahead of him.  Prone to dropping his wife on steep climbs and making good use of pace booty on the run.

The Runner:

2009_Apr11 031-1

The resident Ironman.  Loves to run.  Still thinks the marathon part of Arizona was the fun part.  Wants to run because…likes to run!  And because the boys are so cute when they are drunk.  Prone to inappropriate public display of hot pink compression socks.

I know you’re all very creative, let us have it!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Numbers

I’m a triathlete.  I exercise a lot.  I’m an Ironman.  My body is strong.  Sometimes, it’s even a little bit fast.

I admit it.  I still get happy when I see a smaller number on the scale and less happy when I see a bigger number.  I shouldn’t care.  But I do.  I suppose this is just part of being a woman – regardless of what we do and what we’re capable of, we still let that number influence us a little bit.  I KNOW I shouldn’t care, and it doesn’t influence my eating choices, but yes, when I see a number I like, I do a little happy dance inside.

I made a purchase this week that feeds my inner data geek. 

It doesn’t just measure weight.  You get % body fat, % body water, muscle mass, BMR, metabolic age, and bone mass. 

You see where I’m going with this…

Numbers.  More numbers.  More data to track!

Don’t worry, I’m not letting it take me over.  I’m actually finding it very interesting. 

The new scale says I am 2 pounds heavier than the old scale.  OK, I can deal with it.  It says my % body fat is within the healthy range.  I’m not too surprised by that.  Body water, muscle mass, bone mass…yeah, all OK. 

BMR, the number of calories needed to maintain my current weight: 1199.  Um, WHAT???  I think I would starve on that # of calories.  Clearly it is slightly mistaken here, even when I account for my calories burned working out.

Metabolic age: 19.  I’ll take it :)

The interesting part has been figuring out the right time of day to weigh in.  In the past, I’d always gotten on the scale first thing in the morning, after using the restroom and before eating or drinking anything.  In other words, the lightest possible time I could get.

For accurate readings on this scale, it says that’s not really the best time.  Your body water is lower and so your body fat reads higher.  It’s a tradeoff – weigh later in the day when you are hydrated and get a correct body fat % but a higher weight, or weigh early in the day and get the opposite.  Today, I have weighed in at several times of day to just get a sense of the variation.  Surprisingly, it’s not as big as I thought it would be.

I really wish I’d had this scale last year so I could see the huge changes that took place in my body during IM training, the muscle mass added.  But still, I will enjoy tracking – in a non-obsessive way, I promise – my numbers as I get back into shape this year and have some idea of what my “norm” is.  At the very least, I should have a better understanding of some of my good and bad training days if I see any correlation with hydration levels and weight.

Other than that, I promise not to let the numbers make or break my day.  I won’t obsess.  Any more than any other woman, anyway :)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Doing The Funny Walk

Yesterday I had another hard bike workout – more tough intervals on the trainer.  It’s possible my coach is a closet sadist (who am I kidding? she doesn’t even try to hide it!), but I will sure be in amazing bike shape this year if she keeps this up.  I may or may not have walked a little funny for the rest of the day.  Ow.

We actually got to see the sun for brief periods this weekend!  More rain starts tonight but only for a couple days and then it looks like we will revert to normal winter weather – some sun, some clouds, and days in the high 50s.  It would be nice if the rain stopped so we could have agility class again before the next trial.  Also, my dogs are really tired of getting their legs hosed off after every run on the field.

Nothing really exciting to report beyond this… I’ve been planning on going to 5:30am masters on Monday but it just occurred to me that if it’s raining, we won’t have agility class and I can go to 7:30pm masters.  That sounds much better.

Training totals for January 18-24:
Swim: 2900 yards (should have been longer but no masters)
Bike: 53.4 miles
Run: 15.1 miles
Strength: 1 hour
Total time: ~8 hours

Friday, January 22, 2010


Jenn and I went on what we hoped would be a fun little adventure today.  We stood in line for 2 hours to see our favorite Sharks player, Doug Murray, in the hopes of getting a picture with him.


It was light when we started in line, 90 minutes before the signing was to begin.


And getting dark out by the time we got to the front, though we were 136th in line.


Sadly we were quite disappointed to be told no photography was allowed, not even no-flash, not even through the store windows from outside, or people would be thrown out.  Bah!  I would much rather have a photo than an autograph!  At least Jenn was able to evoke an actual response from him by thanking him in Swedish.


Oh well, thanks to the miracle of photo editing software, we can still have what we hoped to have!  :)


Agility Trial Report

It’s taken a few days to get the photos and videos from the vendors, but here is our report from last weekend!

First, some photos from Dog Gone Digital.






I bought this one of Max from Doghouse Arts.  I LOVE his face. I hope they don’t mind if I steal the Facebook version while waiting for my photo to arrive :)


And videos from 4 Legged Flix.  A brief explanation of the difference between the classes my dogs compete at: Max is at the highest level, Excellent, and no mistakes are allowed; Stanley is at the beginner level, Novice, and *some* types of mistakes are allowed.

Max had a fantastic qualifying run in Excellent B Standard on Saturday for 10 more MACH points!

Stanley would have qualified in Novice Jumpers with Weaves (JWW) on Saturday if he had not knocked a bar.

Max had a great qualifying run in Excellent JWW on Sunday for 9 more points!

Max did not qualify on Sunday’s standard course – oh what a mistake I did not expect! - but it was SUCH a beautiful run!

Stanley qualified in JWW on Sunday for the 2nd leg towards his title and a 4th place in the class!

Stanley only ran Standard on Saturday.  It was a funny run, with some high points (contacts! weave poles! table!), some moments of bad handling (it was late in the day and I was tired.  I should never be tired when handling Stan), and some silly ones (teeter? what teeter?).  But I’m going to post it anyway so we can look back later and see our progress!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Damn Double Dam Run

So it’s monsooning rain and it’s apparently Long Run Thursday and I need to go run a hilly course.  Normal street routes wouldn’t be safe (no shoulder in the hills) and the wilderness trails are too muddy and churned up, so the Los Gatos Creek Trail it was! Part paved, part gravel, all safe and empty!

I parked out by the Vasona Dam and headed uphill from there to Lexington Dam.  Hence, the Damn Double Dam run.

Vasona Lake is not normally this nice brown color but 4 days of runoff has done its part to muck up the water.  No wonder my pool was closed.


Winding along the paved along Los Gatos Creek


And onto gravel as I went further into the hills


This was always my least favorite mountain biking hill (it’s steeper than it looks) and it’s not a favorite while running either.  Hello, Zone 5c!


The end destination: Lexington Dam.  That’s the trail that cuts across the middle continuing up to the top.


Amusing underpass mural art


Back at Vasona and yes, that’s snow on the mountains.  It’s been a very chilly rainstorm!


I think this run proved my legs are finally back.  I’m quite pleased with how it felt and what my pace was like, even up and down the hills.  Just in time, too, with my 1st race of 2010 in 2 weeks!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Drip Drip Drip

Thankfully the overhyped wave-after-wave-after-wave of storms did not arrive until I was done with the agility trial over the weekend (it would have made the 100-mile drive back and forth from the trial site extra-miserable).  But finally, several days behind schedule, the rain began early Monday.  Many people are not happy that we’ve had 3 straight days of heavy rain, but I love this sort of weather.  Our too-low reservoirs need the resupply and our hills and forests need a good drenching to lower the danger once fire season hits.  And I’d rather get it all in one big burst than experience the dark winter of 2005-2006 again, where it rained nonstop from November to May.

The view from my home office looked like this today.  And yesterday.  And Monday.


It’s hard work drying off and warming up after you get drenched.


The main room in our house has a vaulted ceiling and is made up of large beams of wood.  Occasionally in strong windy storms, the flashing near the skylights leaks small drips of water into the house, so we’ve got towels scattered about to catch the puddles.  Around the time Max turned 4 years old, he decided quite suddenly that all the fancy dogbeds I’d bought him had a purpose and he began to sleep on them, as well as rugs, the bathmat, etc.  So today’s drip towels = Max’s bed for the day.


The only real casualty of the storm thus far has been a portion of our lemon tree.  In this case, it’s good to have friends who come by and take your lemons home with them.


For the most part, the weather has not impeded training.  Jenn wrote about our swim in the rain on Monday.  My bike rides have been all intervals holding various wattages, which is best suited for the trainer anyway.  Sadly, today the streak broke and I missed masters due to the pool being closed – when I arrived to swim, the wind was blowing at 40+mph with pouring rain and I’m pretty sure through the gate I saw whitecaps on the pool.  Three days of rainwater has led to murky and possibly unclean water; hopefully they’ll get it all fixed up soon. 

Without the swim, I still had to get in a short ride, made harder by tired legs from yesterday’s bike/run brick.  Thank you, Rocky IV (25 years since that one came out and WOW I never realized how bad it was when I was little) for keeping me pushing through the workout.  My brother posted this Youtube video the other day on FB and I HAD to Netlfix Rocky IV after that.  Besides just having a good soundtrack and motivating training scenes, it’s a bit amusing to watch and realize how sometimes we get a bit caught up in the numbers, our gadgets, and the high tech part of training (who, me?) and that getting back to basics isn’t a bad thing.   :-)

*splish*splash*  That’s all that’s going on around here.  My masters are summoning me to walk them.  Better go find the galoshes.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Back in the saddle again

It’s starting to come together again…Max and I are getting the hang of competing as partners, I’m getting back into training…and I’m learning how to work with Stanley, who is a whole different kind of dog to run!

My boys were very good at the trial this weekend.  VERY very good.  Even if every run didn’t count as a qualifying leg, they worked so hard for me.  Video to come in a few days (whenever it is delivered by the video company), and then you will see.

In the midst of long days of trialing, I wrapped up what is really my first big week of training since AZ.  I did my Saturday hard bike trainer workout after 8pm, shortly after getting back from the show.  I did my long run on Sunday in between Max’s two runs.  The agility people already think I’m weird after I once did a 15-mile marathon training run in circles around the fairgrounds while waiting for Max’s turn to run.  Someone suggested I could have brought my trainer and done my ride there yesterday, but I don’t need them thinking I’m any weirder. 

One thing I did notice at the trial…a lot of those people could use some run drills/training.  I’m lucky to be a strong runner to keep up with my dogs, but some people don’t even know HOW to run.  As a result, they can’t get where they need to be on course to direct their dogs through the course.  Gee, maybe there is a market there for whipping agility handlers into shape?

I don’t get the day off work tomorrow – we get less paid holidays at my company but it’s made up for with the nice holiday shutdown between Christmas and New Years.  So I will be in the pool dark and early, followed by morning meetings!  Enjoy the week, everyone!

Training totals for January 11-17:
Swim: 5200 yards
Bike: 51.2 miles
Run: 15.3 miles
Strength: 1/2 hour
Total time: ~9 hours

Friday, January 15, 2010

ISO: One pair of legs

If found, please return to Molly M, TooTired-ToRemember-HerOwnAddress, California.


This week is kicking my ass, in the best possible way.  I can’t believe how heavy my legs and tight my hamstrings feel, all from relatively short distance workouts.  I always had assumed that recovery work like massage, use of the foam roller, etc was more critical for Iron-distance training.  I am wondering though…not even a week into this build, I’ve felt the need for them more than in my last few long weeks of Ironman training!  My hours of training aren’t all that different than they were for most of last year (but for the last couple months before AZ of course) but the work is already higher intensity lately.  I’m very grateful today for yoga class, my TP ball, and my new TP foam roller (with ridges for extra digging into the muscles!).

I’m feeling the full weight of my post-race deconditioning when it comes to running right now.  I’ve been feeling slow and sluggish and like my legs are just dragging (and yet, my legs wanted to go faster than my prescribed heart rate zones for Wednesday’s run).  I think the snickering coming from the general direction of Chicago is my coach laughing at me for being frustrated with being out of shape, but I do have the experience to know at this point that it will come back fast.  I have a 10K in 3 weeks, it’d better come back fast!!! [Funny how as soon as I finished IM AZ, I was excited for doing some short distance running races and the first one of 2010 felt like a MILLION YEARS AWAY.  Time flies!]

Yesterday was the dreaded bike strength workout, one that burned a spot in my memory last winter.  This time around though, I’m training with watts, which makes it even more painful.  Imagine riding the trainer, pushing hard watts, then immediately jumping off and doing lunges and squats, then back onto the bike to push more high watts.  Rinse, repeat, repeat.  *sob*


I’m on a self-imposed ban from buying any more lululemon clothes for the rest of January.  This after I found myself driving 30 minutes each way in rush hour traffic to check out a store location I hadn’t been to before (and yes, buying more clothes).  My ban does not, however, apply if they finally upload the Olympic cheer gear on their website as promised sometime in January.  I want one of those hockey helmet hats. 

And…oh shit, that just ended when they put bras on the Loot section for $5 tonight.  Bugger. 


The mutts and I are off to an agility trial all weekend.  I really really really hope it’s not another wet muddy miserable rainy affair.  And I really hope Stanley remembers how to weave.


I was tagged by Kelly to list 10 simple things that make me happy.  Easy!

  1. Jeff
  2. Max
  3. Stanley
  4. Cujo
  5. Hot chocolate
  6. Feeling strong
  7. Lululemon
  8. Feeling fast
  9. Making visible training progress with my dogs
  10. Sleep


Finally, a rave for my mom.  She took bikram yoga class with me in mid-December and nearly passed out.  I went off to Hawaii and she, determined to get the hang of it, went back 4x a week.  She just told me last week that she’s getting the unlimited classes per month membership.

She’s also been doing the Couch to 5K program to build up slowly and do the Silicon Valley Turkey Trot 10K in November.  She keeps saying she is doing one and only one event and that’s it and only because she got talked to it by family at Thanksgiving last year.

Guess who just signed up for the 3K division of the Superbowl Sunday race I am doing?  *snicker*

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


It’s only Tuesday and my butt has already been kicked this way and that.  I love this!  I will sleep well tonight.

Swim: I started swimming with a new masters group this week.  Don’t get me wrong, I liked my old group but…I just wasn’t feeling like I would be getting more improvement there.  The city was limiting the coach’s hours, so he would be replaced by assistants frequently, and I was paying $50/month for 3 masters swims per week.  At the new pool, I pay about the same for 3 swims per DAY (let’s give a big HELL YES! to a 9am masters swim option).  It was a very friendly group of people, I was not in the slowest lane, they all hung out in the HOT TUB afterwards (do you know how long I’ve longed for a hot tub after a hard swim?), they have a wine tasting event next week (social people!), and most importantly the coach was all over me with swim form correction, which is what I need most.  This is going to hurt.  And be wonderful!

Strength: I began the new training cycle yesterday with a whole new strength training routine designed to be done on the stability ball.  My abs are still screaming today from that plank with arm movement on the ball.  I’ll do it as often as necessary if it gives me the abs of my dreams, but I’m glad I don’t have to do it again till next week, when I get to do it TWICE.

Run: The nice thing about a heavy overnight rain with more threatening this morning is that the track was completely empty.  When you are doing run drills, it’s generally best to not have an audience.  Trust me.  The stares and laughter from the few middle schoolers that walked by was bad enough.

Stretch: I went to the nice gentle yin yoga class with my mom at lunch today.  Mom has become quite the yoga addict and is going to bikram (hot) yoga classes like 4 times a week.  I fell asleep in the middle of several poses today.

Bike: Tonight I had a bike trainer workout, the first of many in the next couple weeks.  Power intervals are my new torture.  I have a big bike focus this cycle and am going to get my ass handed to me, but it will make me stronger.  I anticipate a few bouts with tears (of joy, when the workout is over) in the coming days.

Sleep: Me, any minute now.  And it’s only 7pm.  Trying to stay awake for hockey…  Speaking of which, the most lovely gift arrived for me from Canada today!  Luluemon’s Cheer Gear (Olympic hockey focused) is not sold in the States yet but a very sweet, smart and beautiful Ironman went and found some for me.


I have been drinking hot chocolate fairly often lately (every couple days), anywhere I can get it (though Peets is the preferred spot as theirs is much better than Starbucks).  If the first 2 days of this week are any indication, I shouldn’t have to worry about those calories too much.  Now if only it would help keep me awake.  Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

It’s All Uphill From Here

Test week is over (as well as my rest week).  Phew! I’m glad to have some good hard work ahead before I have to do that all again!  I finished the tests off Saturday morning on the track with my run test.  Not my fastest ever but not my slowest either – I know it won’t take too long to get my running back where I want it and then even faster. 

After the test, it was time for some FUN!!!  We loaded up the dogs and hit the road, stopping to meet up with Eileen, Reid and Belle to caravan into the Sierras for a romp in the snow.


Our dogs are weirdos.



The only time you will ever see me neck-in-neck racing Eileen! And as she pointed out the dogs totally kicked both of our butts.


Training totals for January 4-10:
Swim: 3650 yards
Bike: 25.3 miles
Run: 10.8 miles
Strength: 1/2 hour
Total time: 5.6 hours

Friday, January 8, 2010


I hope everyone on Facebook who was sooooo concerned about cancer awareness yesterday went and donated $$ to research.  And I mean research, not some *cough*pink*cough* awareness group that uses the majority of the money for their own self-promotion (Tasha points it quite well here).

What Color Bra Are You Wearing?

Thursday, January 7, 2010


Coach’s email regarding today’s swim test (1000 yds):


When we first tested you back in September '08 you came in over XX minutes.  You have dropped over 5 minutes in less than 18 months!  [16 months actually] THAT IS AWESOME!!!!

I think a year of growing real arm, shoulder and back muscles, for the first time ever, is finally starting to pay off and will hopefully lead to bigger swim gains as I have the muscle to work harder in the pool.  At least, based on the pain emitting from those general regions right now, I should still have muscles next time I try to use them.  Holy crap, my arms are sore.  Thank the heavens tomorrow is a rest day.

Two tests down, one to go.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens


I keep meaning to write a blog post about all the things that got me through training and racing last year and are expected to get me through another year.  Especially as I’ve been chatting with Jenn about what she will need for racing, the thoughts have come up.  So…today’s as good a day as any other!

In no particular order…


Aquaphor: My anti-chafing lube of choice.  Non-water-soluble, so it worked with wetsuits and swimsuits, during races, before/during bike rides, and anytime I had a sore spot that needed tending.  A sample size tube of this stuff stashed in my special needs bag saved the last 50 miles of my Ironman bike from being truly miserable.


Lululemon: I know, it’s no shock I’m addicted to their clothes.  But this is about…their running clothes!  So stinkin cute you can’t help but want to wear them all the time, but also wonderfully functional and comfortable! 


Roman Paradigm Massage: Regular deep tissue sports massages kept me on top of my game all year.  As I’ve often joked, NOT the fluffy relaxing type of massage but exactly what I needed to work out every potential issue in my muscles.


Asics running shoes: Keeping my feet, joints and muscles happy and healthy since 2008!


Foam Roller: Love it, hate it, hate it some more.  But it helped loosen up tight painful muscles and keep me injury-free.  Too bad mine is still in Arizona somewhere (long story), I’ll have to get a new one.  But maybe not just yet…


Recovery Sock: I LOVE these socks.  I really believe wearing them after tough workouts helped my legs recover quicker.  And they even come in pink!


Splish: The ultimate in cute swimsuits and the custom ones are even more fun.  Eat your heart out, Charisa Wernick, I have a gnome suit!



Rocktape: When I was getting ART last fall trying to keep myself from developing an injury, Rocktape provided excellent support to healing muscles so I could keep running.  AND it stayed on through swimming for a whole week, biking, and everything else!  Great little local company!

Infinit: It took a lot of experimentation last year before I landed on Infinit.  I was very happy I finally found the product that would allow me to take in all the necessary calories on long bike rides in a concentrated form without taking up too much space.  Completely customizable to your needs and taste!

Trolli Sour Brite Gummy Worms: Best addition to bike nutrition, ever.  I couldn’t stomach chocolate on the bike but gummy worms were just right for a taste of “something different” from my other nutrition products.


Willow Glen Bicycles: No matter what my emergency, the guys at WG Bikes were always there to help me out.  They’ve saved my butt pre-race, pre-bike test, pre-120-mile-ride more times than I can count.  Great bike selection, awesome service, and a knowledgeable staff – what more could you want?  At this point, they are family.


Elizabeth Waterstraat/Multisport Mastery: Last but certainly not least, there’s no way I would have survived the year I planned, trained or not, without the experience and guidance of my wonderful coach!  She kept me focused, neither undertrained nor overtrained, uninjured (!!!), entertained, and confident that I could accomplish my goals.  I’m so excited to be working with her for yet another season!

That’s all for now…my bike test provided a good starting point for the year and tomorrow? Aaaggghhhh! The dreaded swim test.

Monday, January 4, 2010

A Case of the Mondays

  • I hit the snooze button about 6 times this morning but still made it to the gym for my arm-core strength training.  For some reason, it seems the New Year Resolutionists have not turned up this year (you know, the people that decide they are going to the gym every day starting Jan 1st and are usually gone by February – we’ve all been one at some point!).  I lifted weights Saturday and again today and it’s been extraordinarily quiet in there both times!  Strange, very strange.
  • I am grateful that everyone else at work looked as shell-shocked as I did to be there.  My boss admitted to not getting out of bed before 11am every day of the shutdown.  No wonder she cut our meeting short and sent us all on our merry way.
  • I cleaned out my swim bag yesterday and threw away 15 – FIFTEEN – nose clips.  It’s been well over a year since I was forcibly weaned off of them.  It’s so funny to me because I can’t even imagine wearing one now. 
  • I swam with Jenn today.  She swam hard, I did drills.  Each workout assigned by our coaches.  But after I was done (my workout was shorter than hers and I got in the pool 20 minutes ahead of her), I jumped into Jenn’s lane.  And decided to try to flip-turn.  Please note: I tried flip turns once last year (shortly after ditching the nose clip).  I ended up with massive quantities of water in my lungs.  But I was sure that now that I’m more comfortable with water I should be able to do it.  Jenn gave pointers every time she popped back up at the wall in between her sets.  And gosh darned if I didn’t do a flip turn, swim across the pool, do another, swim back and do one more, before all was said and done.  They still need some work but suffice it to say my ability to do flip turns has gone roughly from Hot Wheels to 15-with-a-learners-permit. 
  • My coach posted some exciting news today. 
  • I’ve had 2 salads a day for, I think, 10 of the last 12 days.  I’m not on a diet, per se, but you know how your eating takes a turn into the calorie-heavy side at the peak of Ironman training when you need oodles and oodles of dense calorie-rich food?  I’m trying to jump-start my fruit and vegetable eating again and this seemed like a good way.  It also keeps me full enough from the salads to avoid some of the unnecessary snacking I am prone to do.
  • I used to have a 2-Cokes-for-breakfast habit.  I gave up soda cold turkey 6 years ago.  I started drinking a little bit of it again last fall during Ironman training – long long bike rides and the transition off the bike to running – Coke was just made for these moments.  I even took a big swig in T2 (3:09, in case anyone had forgotten! Damn, I’m proud of the long run through transition to the changing tent, doing a full clothing change, AND chugging a bottle of Coke in an Ironman race and doing it all in 3 minutes) at IM AZ.  Anyway, I think I’m at the point in my life where I’m capable of moderating my soda habit a bit.  Here I am, admitting in public, I have had 1 Coke and 2 Mr Pibbs in the last couple weeks.  And they were darn good.  Since I seem to be incapable of drinking alcohol without a headache these days, I might as well enjoy something!
  • And that’s all I have for today.  Tomorrow: the dreaded bike test.  Ooooooooo it’s gonna hurt!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Ho Hum

The fun and games are over: tomorrow I go back to work after 2+ weeks off (Hawaiian vacation + corporate holiday shutdown).  For about 2 days now, I’ve had that Sunday night feeling of dread that goes with realizing the weekend is over.  I’m trying, really trying, to work up my enthusiasm for a new year and new projects.  I hope I am able to try harder in the morning :-)

The exciting thing about next week though…it’s test week!  A bike test, a swim test and a run test are on tap for me, scattered throughout the week.  These will set the baseline for my training for the year and be solid benchmarks to compare to my fitness in future months.  While I know from a logical perspective what the purpose is and that they only serve as a starting point for my year, my emotional reactions to each are a bit more like this…


Um.  I am still not very good at hurting on the bike.

SWIM TEST: Run away! Run away!

Anything that actually quantifies the extent of the slowness of my swimming is cause for fear.

RUN TEST: Bring it!

It won’t be as fast as my run test of nearly 11 months ago but I’m happy to work my ass off on the track for 20 minutes of all-out pace.

Clearly, we can see where I’m going to have to work on a more positive attitude this week.  I need to channel some of that gung-ho about running into my other two tests and not be afraid of the pain.  Given the shorter distance races I’m focusing on this year, I suspect putting up with pain will be a central theme, so time to put on my big girl pants and suck it up!


Training totals for December 28-January 3:
Swim: ~5359 yards
Bike: 29.1 miles
Run: 12.8 miles
Strength: 1 hour
Total time: 7.75 hours

Friday, January 1, 2010

Hello, 2010!

It’s fun to read everyone’s year-end posts and see the excitement and anticipation about a new year and all the hope that brings. But really…did today feel any different than yesterday? In my case, the only thing different was that I woke up pissed off after all the neighbors shot off illegal fireworks last night, waking us up and freaking out our dogs. Yes, I was the crazy lady in her bathrobe yelling at people in the driveway at midnight.

Anyway, from my perspective, it’s always exciting to see more friends get into endurance sports and specifically triathlon. You may remember my high school buddy Jenn, who was a great swimming and riding partner this year in my IM training.

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She graduated nursing school this past spring and started work in the ER this fall. With all of that finally set up, Jenn was ready – starting today, she is working with Jen Harrison and training for her first triathlons this year! Yay!

Jenn started a blog (Will Train For Wine And Chocolate) to chronicle her newbie triathlete adventures, so add her to your blog readers and give her a little love and encouragement! She’s going to have an awesome year with some great challenges (for me, the biggest challenge would be combining tri training with working the night shift in the ER!). I can’t wait to see her success out there!