Saturday, July 31, 2010

No Passing People!

This morning Drew was going to head off to his trainer, Billy's, boot-camp Park class. I decided that I'd go with Drew to drop him off at the class, but that I didn't want to participate. I'd really rather just go running instead and do my own Ab Challenge!

Drew and I ran most of the way up to the meeting spot where he'd meet everyone else. I had to stop to adjust my laces a couple of times. I finally am forcing myself to wear my new shoes and to get the speed laces adjusted properly so it'll be smooth sailing from here on out. I actually had to throw my old shoes away (I know, I should have recycled them), but I knew if I kept them lying around, I'd be too tempted to keep wearing them.

After I left Drew, I did some more fine tuning on the laces and I think now I've got it "just right". Hopefully they'll be all set now for many miles to come! Today's weather was much nicer than it had been recently, but, I have to say, it's still hot out there when you're running. At least it doesn't feel like you're running through water, but it's definitely not cool. I'm wondering if I'm more of a cold weather runner? Maybe I should become a warm-weather biker?

I started my run off by running one loop around the Reservoir. I tried to keep it slow and "conversational", which isn't all that easy when you're running by yourself. I just kept checking my heart rate and tried to keep it under 180. The easiest way to keep things conversational is to have a song stuck in your head, I think.

Before we left this morning, we were watching "Jersey Shore" (embarrassing fact #1). They played the smallest clip of Enrique Iglesias' new song "I Like It", which promptly got stuck in my head for the rest of the day and in order to get it out, I had to download it when I got home (embarrassing fact #2). Also, is it just me, or does Enrique look younger now than he did before?

When I wasn't repeating the lyrics to "I Like It" in my head, I kept telling myself not to pass people, which turns out was harder than I thought it would be. I don't really think that I'm all that competitive, but it was easy to pick people off, especially on the Reservoir Path. I just kept thinking that I was normally a faster runner than the people that were passing me.

The only great thing about this slow heart rate running? I honestly felt like I could run forever. Maybe my new shoes had something to do with that too, but I felt awesome. After running around the Reservoir, I ran back South to Columbus Circle along the East Side. I saw Drew and Billy's class doing their normal warm-up stuff. Billy saw me and waved, but Drew wasn't paying attention, I guess! They were doing squats when I ran past. Which didn't really seem like all that much fun. I have to say that I wasn't all that sorry that I missed the class!

After I got home, I watched some TV and was really hungry (but was waiting for Drew to get home with groceries) so I fell asleep on the couch until he got home. Once we had eaten, then I got my act together and did today's Ab Challenge. I did 15 minutes of exercises, including some new ones (to me). I put a yoga mat down on the rug today and it was a lot easier to do everything since it wasn't as slippery as the rug has been!

Time: 53:42
Distance: 5.10 miles
Pace: 10:31/mile

Friday, July 30, 2010

Making Time

This morning I had set my alarm for 5:30, but I didn't feel like getting up and doing anything. It was only after that I realized that I should have gotten up and fiddled with my new shoes to get the laces all properly set-up. So, since I didn't go to the gym, I still had to stick with the Ab Challenge. I got up about 25 minutes earlier than I would have otherwise in order to do the exercises. This is the book I'm using, in case you're curious:

And this is the awesome price tag:

I pretty much did the exact same exercises as yesterday since I didn't have time to read about a lot of new exercises and I'm definitely still in the "beginner/intermediate" phase of this book. I'm hoping that by the end of this, I'll get better at stability and will be able to do some of the advanced exercises. I tried to do an intermediate/advanced exercise today and that was pretty much a failure. I will say, however, that I think if I'd had a yoga mat underneath me, I might have been okay. The rug we have is pretty slippery and I just needed a little extra leverage for my feet!

I ended up doing exactly 15 minutes worth of exercises today, which I'm very proud of. We're going to a concert in Prospect Park tonight and I knew I wouldn't want to do the exercises when we got home, so I'm glad I'm sticking to the challenge so far. I'd hate to give up on Day 2!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

An Early Ride, A Late Ride and A Challenge

This morning I was the alternate Watchdog for the Terrier brick workout. About two weeks ago, they had sent out an e-mail saying that they needed someone to volunteer to watchdog this week and I wrote back saying that since I was the alternate, I was planning on being there anyway. So, I woke up at 4:30, ate, pumped up my bike tires, and headed to the Park.

Except it turned out that they didn't need me. Both of the original people who were assigned showed up and one of the original people had brought a friend. I figured that meant I could go ahead and leave since I was just the alternate, so that's what I did. I actually called Drew as well since we had talked about riding bikes after I was done with my Watchdog duties, I thought I'd see if he wanted to bike earlier. He was working on some work stuff when I called, so I ended up just going back home, which was fine with me. I was a little annoyed that I got up so early to ride 3 miles, but it was fine. We ended up watching some TV and falling back to sleep on the couch for a couple of hours before heading to work.

Since neither of us got a workout in today, we thought that maybe we should do something after work. I suggested that we go for a ride on the Westside Path since we didn't go biking this morning. It was my first time riding up the new and improved portion of the Path (so you don't have to actually enter Riverside Park anymore). It might have actually been just as crowded as the Park part was and going this way means you miss a hill, but it was nice to ride on that newly paved path!

Somewhere along the way, we passed a guy with a hard plastic cast over his left leg, who had a bike helmet, but it was just attached to the front handlebars. He didn't think he needed it on his head, I guess. This cast guy apparently was not happy that we passed him, because for the next few miles, we played cat and mouse with him. Every time we passed him, he'd speed up and pass us back. It was all pretty ridiculous if you asked me. Finally, we ended up making a silly little three-some of Drew, crazy cast guy and me bringing up the back. I actually was a little afraid a couple of times that he'd brake suddenly and I'd go flying, but it ended up being fine.

I almost had a heart attack going up the big hill by the bridge. I made it up to the top just as some other girl was getting on her bike and she sort-of darted out and almost blocked the whole path. My heart was already beating pretty fast from the effort of climbing up the hill and when she darted out, I just got really startled, which didn't help any. Shortly after that, we decided to just turn around and head home and not go the extra mile or so to the end of the path.

I spent a lot of time biking behind Drew and at some point I became convinced he was wearing my socks. Not that it's a big deal, I just thought it was funny. When I mentioned it to him, he looked down at his feet and rode his bike off the edge of the Path into the grass. It's not that big of a deal, it's probably about an inch drop, but in that split second where he was swerving and weaving, I thought for sure he'd wipe out. Luckily, he's a pretty good biker and was able to get back on the Path without any bumps or bruises. I felt pretty bad about making him lose his concentration.

I tend to do a lot of thinking on the bike. Today I realized that I'm not too worried about my own biking abilities or biking in a straight line or all that, but I am concerned about everyone else. I guess it's not unlike driving a car. I know I'm a decent driver, but everyone else on the road is crazy. And there were definitely some crazy bikers out there today!

The other thing I thought about on the bike today was doing an Ab Challenge. I've been thinking about doing this for a while now. To be honest, I think I gained a couple of pounds when I broke my arm and while I know you can't spot treat pounds or fat, I figured that doing some ab work would help me overall with swimming, biking and running. I also really liked doing Pilates with Nicole last year, but it's not really an expense I can afford right now to have private lessons, so I figured I could do some things by myself.

So, since I had been thinking about this for a while, I knew that I wanted to make the Challenge realistic. I didn't want to start it and then not be able to finish it for various reasons, so I thought that I should challenge myself to do 15 minutes of core work every day for two weeks. And on the bike, I realized, what am I really waiting for? If I'm going to do this for two weeks, I don't need to start on a Sunday. I can start tonight!

So, when we got home, we made dinner and then I (with Drew's help) pumped up my Swiss ball, got out my $2.00 Swiss ball exercise book that I got at TJMaxx and started reading. I actually really like the book. There are lots of exercises and they fully explain them all with beginner, intermediate and advanced variations. Then, at the back of the book, there are little workout plans. Not a bad value for $2.99. For two weeks of workouts, that's only $0.21 per workout! Hard to beat that!

These are the exercises I did with the ball tonight:

Sitting Balance - sit, lift one foot off the floor for a count of 5
Abdominals - sit, lean back slightly, hold for count of 5, roll back to seated
Toe Taps - sit, tap toes on one foot 10 times
Back Extensions - sit, roll forward on ball, rock back and forth for count of ten (ball on lower back)
Hip Circles - sit, swivel each way 5 times
Hamstring Stretch
Gluteal Stretch
Cat Stretch (like yoga, hands on ball)
The Swan - lie on ball, push pelvis into ball and lift head slightly
Bottom Toner (intermediate) - lie on ball, lift both legs while clenching butt!
Basic Crunches - lie on floor, legs on ball

This ball thing reminds me a lot of pilates and how you keep your own stomach muscles clenched while doing other exercises. I really enjoyed it and think that this could be a good challenge for me. I think that I spent about 20 minutes doing these exercises and I did them all while watching TV! I asked Drew if he wanted to join the challenge and he said that he didn't really want to but he thought he could probably benefit from some more core exercises. But, then he didn't do anything, so when I've got a 6 pack in 14 days (ha ha!) he can just be jealous!

Time: 1:11:30
Distance: 14.85 miles
Pace: 12.46 MPH

Total biking for the day: 17.86 miles

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

You're Both Wearing Black Swimsuits

This morning Laura and I met for a swim at Manhattan Plaza Health Club because what we were really interested in was getting in the hot tub after the swimming was done. I had even planned out what I would do in the pool last night. This is what I was supposed to do:

8 x 75 (swim/drill/kick)
300 kick (alternate 50 on stomach / 50 on back)
Main Set
300 (every 3rd length backstroke) / Rest 0:30
200 (odds fisting drill / evens swim) / Rest 0:20
200 (middle 100 catch-up drill) / Rest 0:20
10 x 25 on the 0:45 (adjust so there is no more than 0:15 rest)
2 x 100
Total: 2050 yards / 1.16 miles

Except that's not what I did. I'm always forgetting how crazy crowded this pool is, so when I first got in, all I could do was just some straight swimming. Not that there is anything wrong with that, it just wasn't quite what I was planning on. This is what I ended up doing:

800 swim
200 kick
200 drill (odds fisting drill / even swim)
200 kick
100 swim (50 fast in 0:41)
Total: 1500 yards / 0.85 miles

After doing the 800 in the Fast Lane, I moved over to the Slow Lane because instead of having to share the lane with 4 other people, moving to the slow lane meant sharing with one other person. Which is why I decided to use the kick board and do some drills. Eventually, the other person in the Slow Lane got out of the pool and Laura moved over so we were able to share the lane, which was nice.

I'm not exactly sure when this happened, but it must have been while I was doing the 200 drill, a guy in the Fast Lane stopped at the end of the pool to talk to us. He said that since we were both wearing black bathing suits, he wasn't sure which one of us it was that was doing things wrong, but one of us wasn't finishing our stroke all the way. Frankly, I'm not sure it wasn't me, but it certainly made me think about it for the rest of the morning.

So, I'm not really sure how I felt about this guy giving us unsolicited advice like that. It's like a lot of athletic things. I know that there are people out there who could give me pointers, but I'm not sure I want them if they're not solicited. I should mention that this guy is a really awesome puller. I remember him from the other times we were there and he's quite fast, but he never ever kicks and I'm not sure that makes him an expert on swimming overall if he doesn't ever do the whole shebang.

The hot tub at the end was really hot. Shouldn't they adjust that for summer? I think I could have stayed in longer if it had only been a couple of degrees cooler, but as it was, I felt a little gypped on the whole thing. We've now used up our two passes to this Club this year, so we'll have to find other pools if we're in need of a hot tub fix later this year!

Time: 34:36
Distance: 1500 yards / 0.85 miles
Pace: 40:54/mile

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Message Received

First, a little background. I bought myself new running shoes over a month ago. I've used them once since then, just before the NYC Triathlon. It didn't go all that well. I kept having issues with my orthotics sliding around and the laces being too tight. Based on that, I decided to just keep wearing my old shoes. I wore them for the Triathlon and I've been wearing them since then.

Today was the day where the old shoes decided to send me a message. The message? Retire us! Now! Drew and I went to the Park together this morning (he had a plan of running 4 miles around the Park and to the gym and then doing some lifting) and I was heading to the Terrier run. We parted ways at the bottom of the Park and I headed up the West side while he went East. I'm still not really sure why we didn't run together, but I'm assuming that Drew wanted to just run at his own pace instead my slow pace.

I knew almost instantly that my shins were not going to be happy with me today. I ran the few minutes up to the meeting spot for practice and already my shins were hurting. Mostly my left one. It was actually feeling okay while we did the strides and drills like normal, but I wasn't sure it was the best idea to attempt the entire workout today.

The planned workout was a 5 mile tempo run. Which sounded a bit like torture with old shoes and an aching shin. I decided to nix that idea and do a three mile run, including running home. I thought that seemed like quite enough. The temperature was actually bearable this morning, which was a nice change and made me wish I had been wearing my new shoes as it would have been nice to run for a longer time.

Those shoes have now done their duty and will be retired properly. Time to get out the new shoes. It's one of those things where I've just been avoiding fussing over getting the speed laces just right. I sort-of feel like Goldilocks with those speed laces. I wish there was a way to make them perfect on the first try. Instead, right now, they're too tight on my foot, but if they're not that tight the orthotics were slipping all around. But, now that I know I'm stuck wearing these new shoes, I'll be forced to get it right.

I haven't really been timing myself while running recently. Or looking at my heart rate or calories or any of that other fancy data. What I do know is that I started running somewhere around 6:25 and I got home just before 7:00, so doing the math, it seems like it was 3 miles in about 30:00 minutes. Sounds like a good day to me.

Time: ~30:00
Distance: 3.00 miles
Pace: 10:00/mile

Saturday, July 24, 2010

If You Were Children or Animals...

That's pretty much how my first workout since the triathlon started (yes, I've been lazy all week). Drew and I went to his trainer, Billy's, bootcamp class in the Park this morning in the 90+ degree heat and Billy said, "If you were children or animals, this would be cruelty. Instead, you're adults, so it's okay." Um, yeah, I'm not sure if it was. It was bloody hot out there.

Drew and I walked to the Upper East Side meeting spot like usual. I think I normally would have jogged and Drew did suggest it, but I knew I'd be too hot and grumpy if we did that. Once we got there and met up with the few other people who braved the heat, we got right into it. We started off with 100 jumping jacks and didn't really slow down from there.

We did some jump lunges, squats, push-ups, etc. And then we did them again. After that, Billy had us do an Indian Run down to the Fountain. He gave me a hard time about not sprinting fast enough when it was my turn to run to the front of the line, but I wasn't too worried about it. By the time we got to the Fountain, I definitely already had the onset of a headache and was feeling really hot. The whole time today, I really couldn't believe that I had done a triathlon in this heat a week ago. I guess it was a couple of degrees cooler last week, but maybe it was the adrenaline that made the difference as well?

Once we got to the Fountain, we did some jumping around up the stairs, lunging around, more push-ups, a couple of quick short runs and then we did that again and again. After each round, everyone was stopping to get water and take a quick rest break in whatever shade we could find. There were lots of tourists walking/sitting around looking at us like we were crazy. I think we were.

The jumping on the stairs is really hard for me. Somehow I'm totally inept at jumping with two feet at the same time. I'm a great one leg jumper, but I think I'm missing the gene for two-legged jumping. Drew always tries to help me and I think I actually did a better job today than I've done in the past, but it's pretty sad to watch me versus everyone else. The best I can do is to try to swing my arms and gain some momentum from that to propel both of my legs at the same time. I've resigned myself to being a bad jumper. Luckily, there aren't a lot of situations in my daily life where this is critical.

I was worried about my elbow since Billy generally makes people do a lot of push-ups, but it held up okay today. There was a part where he wanted people to do one-armed reaches (in a plank position and then lift one arm up and reach behind you, then switch arms). I opted to just do straight push-ups during that part since I already know that doing one-armed stuff on my left arm does not make it happy. Especially in the humidity of today. It sort-of throbs just walking around in this crazy humidity and I'm trying to keep it as happy as possible.

After we finished up doing exercises all around the Fountain, we ran back to the UES through the Ramble. Well, truthfully, it was more of a half jog/half walk. Once we got back to 86th Street, Billy had us do a sprint to end class. Billy said that it was about 300 meters, but I think that might have been a little bit long for where we started from. But, that's roughly right. Somewhere in the 0.17-0.18 miles category.

The boys took off way ahead of the girls, but I was determined to leave it all out there. I knew if I started really pushing too early, I'd never make it, but I think I did a good job of pushing it just enough and then really starting to kick toward the end. There were two other girls doing the sprint and they were both ahead of me when we started until about half-way. Then I started gaining on them and ended up passing both of them at the end. I did the sprint in 1:00 exactly, which if I could really sustain that would be less than a 6 minute mile (ha ha ha!). I'm still pretty proud of that. Although I was done at the end of that and was ready to walk myself home and to the grocery store for some breakfast supplies!

All in all, not a bad workout for my first one back after the triathlon. I'm not going to be as lazy going forward as I was this week. Although I know myself and without anything to really look forward to, it's not going to be easy to motivate myself to get up in the morning and get out and workout. Good thing Drew and I signed up for a duathlon ... in October. I'm sure that's enough to get me up and out the door every once in a while!

In totally unrelated news, I found a picture of the actual log that I ran into in the Hudson River last Sunday while I was swimming. It just so happens that one of my Terrier teammates that wasn't racing took a photo. So, without further ado, here it is:

Doesn't look so scary there, I'll admit. But you try running into it when you're swimming in a dark river known for having bodies floating around in it!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

New York City Triathlon

I got up this morning around 4, ate a Clif bar, drank some Gatorade, got dressed and jumped into a cab to get to transition. I got to transition around 5 and snapped this photo of how crazy and crowded our (yellow) transition area was. There are two transition areas, so this is only about half of the participants in the race.

I had to drop my bike off on Saturday and knew that transition was really crowded, so I packed really light for transition. That meant that I was able to set-up really quickly. I had also remembered that I hadn't put my bike in an easy gear, which they recommend for the bike out since there is a steep hill almost right away. Luckily, since your back wheel is hanging up in the air, it was really easy for me to spin my tires and change gears so I'd be all set for T1.

I wanted to take a picture of my transition area so that I could show you the girl next to me on the left. When I was setting up, I thought that maybe she was doing an Iron-distance race instead of an Olympic. It just seemed like an awful lot of bananas and Gu-related items for a total of 32 miles. Not to mention how much space she was taking up, which somehow only expanded over the course of the race. I'm sure she smelled good with her deodorant there, though!

After setting up, I found Laura and we chatted for a bit. We snapped this picture, where I think that I look totally asleep still. I'm not sure I was quite ready to do a triathlon quite yet!

Laura and I met up with Bruce, who was in the red transition area and the three of us walked the mile to the swim start. By the time we got there, I was ready for a bathroom break, so I went to find the port-a-potties and waited in line. Right after that, I heard the National Anthem, so I knew the race was just about to start. I was able to watch the pros and elites start their races. It was really awesome to see the pro men all swim together. They sort-of all formed a pack behind the leader (sort of like geese flying together).

After that, it was time to get my wetsuit on. I had worn some $2.50 flip-flops up to the race start, so I was able to just throw them away. Otherwise I would have had to collect my stuff at the end of the race and after San Francisco, I really wasn't in the mood for that. Once I had my suit on, I was almost regretting the fact that I had decided to wear one. The water was 76 degrees and it was at least that warm out of the water as well. As soon as I put the suit on, I was really hot and I couldn't wait to get into the water.

We were all lined up along the water's edge and moved up as the waves in front of us started their waves. There was a rope in the water that people were holding onto, while other people were sitting on the barge edge and jumped in once the gun went off. I saw that people who weren't holding onto the rope at the start were having trouble getting past the rope once they started. They sort-of got stuck in between the barge and the rope. Because the current was pretty strong, the people holding onto the rope were being pulled out pretty far into the water.

That meant that when I got out onto the barge for my wave, I was looking for the rope about a foot to two feet out in the water. Except that it was right against the barge. It was just the current that was pulling it out so far. One girl jumped in right away and did not hold onto the rope. She really had to struggle to get back to the barge and hold onto the rope. That seemed like a good sign for the swim downstream! I really made sure to grab onto the rope before I jumped into the water. I didn't want to be swept downstream too soon! This is my swim wave, I'm somewhere in the middle here, but you can see how far the current was pulling us away from the barge.

Pretty soon, the horn sounded and we were off. I thought the swim just went okay. Even though it's just a straight shot, there wasn't really anything to sight, so I had trouble with that. I felt like I was weaving a bit, but I finally was able to find a line and just stuck to that. About half-way through the swim, I felt my fingers on my left hand dig into something (non-human) in the river. I freaked out for about 5 seconds, stopped, and realized that it was a huge stick floating in the water. I mean, I was swimming in the Hudson River. I wasn't really scared, but I was hoping it wouldn't be anything too gross!

I felt good during the swim. I had passed a couple of the people in the wave ahead of me, so that felt like it was a good sign. When I got out of the water, I looked down at my watch and realized that I had pressed the wrong button at the start and had not started my watch. Oops. That was going to make it a more interesting day. Here's me looking at my watch realizing that nothing had happened.

When I got up to the path to T1, I took off my swim caps and wiped off my mouth right away. Last year, there were lots of people with black icky stuff from the River all over their faces and I didn't want that to be in all my pictures. So, here's a picture of me wiping my face:

Drew, Ann and Eric were all waiting there to cheer me onto T1. The run to T1 really wasn't that bad. It's about 720 meters from the swim exit to T1, and I was worried that the concrete would hurt my feet, but I really didn't notice it at all.

T1 was fine. I took my wetsuit off the rest of the way and then put my helmet on right away. Then I put on some sunscreen. Drew was nice enough to get my the spray kind, so I sort-of sprayed and hoped for the best. I put on socks, shoes, sunglasses, grabbed my bike and was off.

I was glad that my bike was in the easier gear on the hill up to the road for the bike ride. There were definitely some people having trouble in front of me, but I didn't have any issues. I saw my Terrier coach, Robert, right after getting out of T1 and also our friend Matt. That Robert yelled at me to make sure I was smiling and that was a good reminder to just have fun out there.

The bike ride was fine. I didn't know what to expect, but it was mostly rollers. It actually was nice that it was an out and back course so you knew where the uphills would be on the way back. I got up to 32.4 MPH as my max speed and I definitely got close to that a couple of other times as well. The rollers made for really good downhills and long uphills. Even though I went really fast a few times, I spent a lot of time going a lot slower than that, too!

The course was really crowded. There was one lane for each direction and it was packed. I felt like I was drafting the entire ride, but so was everyone else. I wasn't worried about getting a penalty, because it seemed like I wasn't the only person out there having this problem. Maybe the pros had a clear field, but us middle-of-the-packers certainly did not!

Somewhere around Mile 12 I realized that I had perhaps over-hydrated for the race and I really had to pee. I really had to think about peeing on the bike, but decided against it. I really, really thought about it. If only I didn't have a white bike seat, I think I probably would have. That's probably a good reason to keep the white seat.

It was somewhere around Mile 18 that I was about ready to be off the bike. I haven't ridden 25 miles in quite a while and I was realizing that it's longer than you think it is (it might be bad to realize that in the middle of a triathlon!). The bike course wasn't the most exciting and it's usually on the bike that I wonder why in the heck I sign up for these types of these things. I was really surprised to see Drew and Eric as I was heading back on the bike. It was somewhere around 79th Street (before the turn-around at 57th Street). I was really excited to see them there as it was a total surprise.

When I got to the turn-around point, which the guy at the meeting had said was about a mile from transition, I was getting really annoyed. I realized that I was almost to 25 miles and that I think the bike course was long. Plus, by this point, I really had to pee.

When I got back to transition, my bike computer said 25.95 miles, so almost a mile long. I changed shoes, grabbed my hat and race belt, re-applied sunscreen and ran out. Or, almost out. I ran past the port-a-potties thinking I could hold it, but then decided that was a bad idea. I looked in two port-a-potties before realizing that none of them had toilet paper and since I had already peed in my wetsuit this morning what was going to be the difference now if I didn't use TP? (Oh the rationality of a triathlete).

Upon exiting T2, I grabbed a cup of Cytomax and headed out for the run. There was a big group of Terriers (not racing) at the run start on 72nd Street, which was awesome to have my team mates cheering for me! These are the pictures they snapped of me just starting the run.

The run was hot. I had noticed at some point on the bike that all of sudden it just got a lot hotter outside and I wasn't looking forward to the run in the heat. Right as I entered the Park on 72nd Street, I saw Ann and then not long after that, I saw Drew and Eric.

Right after seeing them, I saw Aaron Scheidies (a blind triathlete). I had seen him pass me on the bike and when I saw him on the run course, he was walking with his guide after finishing the race. I told him that he had a great race and we ended up chatting for a minute. He's an MSU grad (like me!) and he wished me well. I think that it's amazing that these athletes with disabilities have overcome so much and also do triathlons. Super inspirational. Especially when they beat you in the race!

After that, I just concentrated on executing my run plan. I walked through every single aid station and took a cup of water at each one. It was hot and I was running slow, but I was doing the best I could under the conditions. I was talking to Drew about it after the fact and I admitted that I did have to take a couple of walking breaks (mostly 5-20 seconds), so I feel like I went with my original plan and with the heat, I'm not sure I could have pushed myself much more. The main thing that I really concentrated on was to keep swinging my arms. I learned when I was doing all my power walking that if I swing my arms, I'm more likely to start running than if I just stop and walk regularly, so I don't think I lost that much ground by taking my walking breaks.

The biggest problem with the run was that by mile 1.5, I was chafing from my tri top. This happened to me at Westchester too, and I knew that I wasn't in the mood for it today. I ended up just taking off my top and running in my sports bra, not really caring how I looked. The only problem with that? No one really cheers for you when you're the girl in the pink sports bra (that totally clashes with your red running hat and fancy red manicure!).

I think that in miles 2-6, I really realized how nice it is to be a part of a team. Especially a NYC based team. Because I was getting a lot more cheers and encouragement when I appeared to be a part of Terrier. I have to say, though, that I ended up with nickel-sized circles (from the chafing) under my arms. I don't know that I could have stood anything more for a few more cheers here and there. I ended up seeing Ann and then Drew and Eric again almost at the finish line.

And before I knew it, I was done! I thought I might have finished in under 3:30, but I couldn't be sure because I hadn't started my watch at the swim and when I got to the finish line, the clock was broken (you can see them fixing it with the ladder in the photos below). That made it a lot harder to know my final time. I had to wait for the results to be posted online.

And I did it! I freaking did it! My total time: 3:22:00! Whoo hoo! I know I could have had a shorter T2 if I hadn't had to pee and if it had been 10 degrees cooler, I bet I could have had a faster run, but you know what? It doesn't matter! I totally smashed my goal. Plus, it's a PR! I know that I was pretty wishy-washy about whether or not I should do this race this year and I have no regrets. I'm so happy I did it. It was a blast. It's nice to not have to travel at all for a race.

I know that some people might say that it wasn't a real PR because the current in the Hudson is so helpful, but you know what? That's the race course. Every race is different and every year is different. I don't think that the fast swim takes away anything from my race. I finished smiling with no broken bones, so I think all of that makes it a huge success!

After the race, I met Drew and Eric at the family waiting area, ate my bagel and orange and then we headed out of the Park.

Drew and I headed back to transition, but I realized when we got there that we got there too early. Transition didn't open until 11 (because there were still people out on the course). We definitely saw a couple of people just entering transition (T2) while we were waiting. I know I was glad to be done and not starting the run around 11! Whew. That just sounds hot.

All in all, so happy to have done the race. I'm not really sure what the rest of the summer holds for me now that Timberman is out of the picture, but I've got some ideas up my sleeve! Plus, I'll be planning 2011 soon, I'm sure!

The official results:
Time: 19:25
Distance: 0.90 miles
Pace: 1:10/100
Time: 1:44:29
Distance: 25.0(+) miles
Pace: 14.3 MPH
Time: 1:06:16
Distance: 6.20 miles
Pace: 10:41/mile
Total Time

Friday, July 16, 2010

Getting My Legs Ready To Execute The Plan

I have today and Monday off work since my best friend, Ann, is visiting for the weekend. I wanted to go for a quick run this morning and she was more than game. We ended up heading outside around 8:45, which I realized later is about the same time I'll be running on Sunday, so it was a good realization of how hot it'll be!

We were thinking something in the 3-mile range for today. Just enough to get my legs out there and moving, but not enough to tire them out. Plus, I had a feeling we'd be doing a lot of walking around later on doing some shopping/touristy stuff!

We walked to the Park, headed north up the east side, cut across the Great Lawn Loop and then back down the west side. Whew. It was hot. I made us take a couple of walking breaks. I felt okay about that today. My legs were a little testy and I didn't want to make them mad at me! It was nice to get out and have a quick run with Ann while we could catch up on some gossip. I don't normally love running with other people, but she's a pretty good one to have around. Plus, she never complains that we're going slower than her normal (fast) pace!

We ended up going exactly three miles, so success on that front! Just a nice little fun run! Today starts the getting organized for the triathlon day, so here's the rough outline of my plan:
  • Friday: Attend mandatory pre-race meeting, pick up packet and race number, look around the Expo. And, possibly most importantly, get mani/pedis with Ann and Laura!
  • Saturday: Drop off my bike. Mandatory to do this on Saturday. No bike drop off on Sunday.
  • Sunday: Race Day! Transition opens at 4:30. I think I'll get there around 5:00. My swim wave is at 6:20. That should be plenty of time to set-up and walk the mile + to swim start.
  • SWIM: I'm still not sure what wetsuit to wear. The water temperature is really warm. I'd like to keep more of the Hudson off me, but I think I might wear sleeveless so I don't overheat. My plan for the swim is to find a rhythm, but get out of the Hudson as quickly as possible!
  • BIKE: Be careful getting up to the course from transition and from there, just have fun. I'm never going to be a fast biker, or at least not for this particular race, so I might as well just enjoy it. I've heard that there is a lot of broken glass really far to the right, so I'm going to be conscious of the road conditions and the technical turns on the course. Oh, and try to not break my arm before the race even starts.
  • RUN: I really want to run this race. I know that the crowd support is amazing (from my own experience last year) and I want to really have fun and enjoy that. My plan is to get into the Park, up to the East side of Harlem Hill and just keep running from there. I will not penalize myself for walking through aid stations. With the heat, I know I'll need the hydration and it's more important. But, I don't want to take other walking breaks. When I turn the corner on the 72nd Street transverse, I want to have something left in the tank so that I can hopefully pass a couple of people since I know where the finish is (this is my backyard after all!).
All in all, I'm just hoping to have a great race. I know that because I was out for such a long time with my broken arm, this might not be my best triathlon ever ability-wise, but I think it will still be a blast! I'm so excited to do this race. I'm really glad that I didn't defer. I'm trying desperately to not have a time goal for this race. In truth, I'd be disappointed if it took me more than 4 hours. I'd love to make it under 3:30:00, but I'm not going to be upset one bit if I'm not. Now it's just time to rest up, hydrate, and execute the plan!

Time: 30:27
Distance: 3.00 miles
Pace: 10:02/mile

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Quick Brick

I decided to take Wednesday as a rest day. I am supposed to be tapering, after all. My legs were a little tired after running Monday night and Tuesday morning and Wednesday off was exactly what they needed. Robert gave us a more specific workout for the brick this morning, but I went off the rough estimates of that workout and made my own.

I decided that I'd just really take it easy today. Not push myself on the bike. The difference between 15 MPH and 14 MPH really isn't that much in the scheme of things and I want to keep my legs moving, but also fresh for Sunday. Mostly what I worried about on the bike was using my new water cage. Since one of mine fell off in San Francisco and I got a new cage last Sunday, I wanted to make sure I was comfortable using it before the race. In the interest of nothing new on race day and all that. I know I'll need both water bottles for the race and this new one seems to actually be easier to get the bottle in and out than the old one.

I got off my bike after doing not quite two full loops of the Park. I was just going by the time (45-50 minutes) rather than miles, which was actually a nice change. I wish I could just stop riding after 1:30:00 on Sunday! I got off the bike and changed shoes as quickly as possible. And then started running.

I felt like I was going really slowly. But, I told myself to just keep swinging my arms and my legs would keep moving. It's crazy how such a small thing can be so helpful. I knew that the run for today wasn't very long, so I just wanted to concentrate on keeping myself moving on tired legs off the bike. It was easier than I had thought it would be.

Part of what motivated me was that when I made the turn to go back down the east side of the Park, there were two or three girls behind me who just kept talking about what they were going to do on Sunday (at the race) and this that and the other thing. I sort of wanted to turn around and punch one of them since they were really annoying, but instead I just concentrated on my running and staying ahead of them. It would have been more annoying to be passed by them!

They actually stopped running on the 72nd Street transverse near the fountain. They're part of another tri club that does their brick workouts near where we do them. I have to say that in that moment, I was really glad that Robert makes us run the finish of the race. It's probably about another half-mile from where they stopped to the actual finish line and I can imagine that since I'm all prepared for that, that I have a slight edge over them mentally. And this is all a mental sport sometimes, right?

Maybe it was good those annoying girls were on my tail since it turned out to be a pretty good (short) run for me! I was a little worried after my slow pace on Monday, but this seems back to normal!

Time: 49:03
Distance: 11.65 miles (14.70 total)
Pace: 14.25 MPH

Time: 24:07
Distance: 2.60 miles
Pace: 9:16/mile

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

No Watches, Just Smiles

This morning I got up and went to the Terrier run practice. I knew that it would be a really short and quick speed workout, which I thought would be exactly what my legs needed after last night's run with Drew. We did our normal strides, which I thought took longer than usual. I think we definitely did more of them than normal!

After that, we took the short-cut through Sheep's Meadow and ran to the S. The taper workout for NYC was 8 x 200 meters. Easy-peasy. Before we started, Spencer said that he didn't want to see any watches today. No one was to look at their times. We should all just go out and take it easy today. And, most importantly, we should be smiling at all times!

I was fine with this no watch plan, since that was pretty much my plan anyway. I just wanted to get my legs moving. The 8 x 200 went by pretty quickly (we did 200 meter recovery jogs in between), so it was a quick two miles in total.

After everyone was done with the workout, Robert and Spencer called everyone over for a meeting about the race. Mainly the running portion. Spencer told us that he thinks that we're the best trained tri group in the city, and that's not just his ego talking. He knows how hard we all work, even when we're not at the group workouts. Then he gave us a great pep-talk about the run for the triathlon. He said that we're all more than capable of running the entire 10K. We all know the Park like the back of hands. This is our backyard and we can stay strong. We just need to remember to keep swinging our arms. As long as we do that, our legs will follow.

The other thing that Spencer really stressed is that we need to have a plan. He said that he hates when people are just "trying to survive" the run. He said that we should really think about what we're doing and then go execute the plan. Our legs will be tired, but we can do it and finish strong (while smiling, of course!).

Now I just have to figure out exactly what the plan is...

Time: ?
Distance: ~ 4.00 miles

Monday, July 12, 2010

Let's Go For A Run

I had been thinking and thinking about the fact that I really wanted to run part of the NYC Triathlon course (essentially miles 1-4), which gets you from transition to the top of the Harlem Hill on the East Side. I know that if I can make it that far in the race, I should be good to go.

Drew really wanted to go for a run after work today, so he humored me in my quest to try out the route. Even though I've done it lots of times on my own, I've never run from the West Side Highway and 72nd Street, which changes everything!

We walked to 72nd Street and into Riverside Park. From there, we scoped out the transition area and then we were off. The first uphill is going to suck. It sucked today. It'll suck when I'm on rubbery legs off the bike. You should not have to run uphill immediately. That should be outlawed!

We actually got really lucky with the stoplights on 72nd Street (which obviously won't be a factor on race day), but we made all the lights going into the Park, so we didn't have to stop, which was really nice. I see now, looking at the map, that we made a mistake in the route, so we added in a little bit of extra mileage by not heading North right away on that driveway. Oh well. I guess that'll make the miles go by that much faster on Sunday!

I tried to keep track of the miles by hitting the lap button on my old watch (not a HR monitor) and this is what I came up with:

Mile 1: 10:45
Mile 2: 11:41
Mile 3: 12:43
Mile 4: 8:54

I know that Mile 3 was long and believe me, it felt like it at the time, too! Running up the first half of Harlem Hill was okay. Running down was better. And then I don't know what happens to me. I think the anticipation of that long uphill just gets to me. I made it up the second side of the hill (by Lasker Pool) and then I was just done. I wanted to be done running. So, we walked for a few seconds, ran for another minute or so and then that was that.

I had completed my goal and I was on a mission to get myself some Gatorade. That was all I wanted. Except all the vendors in the Park had packed up for the night and gone home. Don't they know that's not allowed? After walking for a while, Drew said that he was starving, so we decided to run the last mile back to the bottom of the Park to get ourselves some dinner.

We went to Whole Foods for dinner and spent a ridiculous amount of money on food. They don't sell Gatorade, but they do sell Vitamin Water (on sale 5 for $5) and I sucked down two of them faster than you can imagine! Totally worth it.

I will say that I was a little concerned that I was so slow today, but I'm trying to remember that this race on Sunday is supposed to be fun!

Running #1
Time: 44:03
Distance: 4.00 miles
Pace: 11:02/mile

Running #2
Time: 11:09
Distance: 1.00 miles
Pace: 11:09/mile

Volunteering, Biking and Swimming

Saturday morning found me up early to complete my final task in order to qualify for entrance into the New York 2011 Marathon (gulp!). I've already run the 9 NYRR races, but I needed to do my part and volunteer for a race. My friend, Lisa, suggested that being a bike marshal was the best way to go. I signed up for Saturday's Dash & Splash 10K race (with the splash being in Lasker Pool after the race was over).

Of course, in typical fashion, I was worried that I wouldn't be able to bike quickly enough and the lead runner would pass me by, so I did some research on the fastest 10K times and quickly realized that I should have no trouble at all finishing ahead of the runners. Which is good, because I know that some people are really fast runners, but I'd be a little embarrassed if they could run faster than I could bike.

It ended up that there were 5 of us bike riders on Saturday morning. We went out in teams of two ahead of the lead truck (which stayed in front of the lead male runner). I was in the second wave of bikers. We were given whistles and told to clear all runners/walkers/etc. from the course in advance of the race. I have to tell you, it's not that easy to whistle and yell at people while riding your bike and trying to pay attention to everything else.

However, I had a ton of fun! Something about blowing a whistle and waving frantically at someone and telling (okay, I was yelling!) them to move out of the way was really fun. It was crazy to me how oblivious people are while wearing their headphones. Of course, some people were a little bit nasty when I was asking them to move out of the way, but I guess that's to be expected.

After finishing up with the volunteering, I did some more biking in the Park. I hadn't started my watch for the race and since I had such a nice time, I decided to just do the same thing for the rest of my ride and not be worried about anything other than spending some time on the bike. I ended up doing about 20 miles total, which I think seems like an okay number for the day.

Sunday I finally made it to the Terrier swim practice. I haven't been "real" swimming in a really long time. I figured maybe I should get one good swim in before the triathlon this coming weekend. I actually dropped my bike off at Toga to have them give it a tune up and also put a second bottle cage on (since mine fell off in San Francisco) and picked it up after practice, so it was really a two-for one kind of afternoon.

I got to practice a little bit early and was worried that I was going to end up with no coach. I knew that I'd get in and swim either way, but I was glad when Julia showed up a couple of minutes late and gave us a pretty good workout! Here's what we did:

300 Swim Warm-Up
2 x 150 Kick / Drill / Swim (50 of each)
2 x 50 Build

450 (Done as 9 x 50 with bilateral breathing on the 3-5-7, no rest in between 50s)
8 x 25 Breath control 2 x 4-3-2-1
4 x 200 race pace (:20 rest)

100 Swim Cool-Down

The 450 set wasn't easy. I sort-of hate bilateral breathing as a general rule, so I wasn't overly excited to do it today. I know that it's good race practice, but it doesn't mean I have to like it. On the last 50 where were were supposed to be breathing every 7 strokes, I definitely had to cut it short twice and only go 5 strokes. Oh well. Not the end of the world. I still took my breath on the left!

On the last 25, Julia told us that if someone could make it with taking no breaths, we could skip the 4 x 50s fast that she had written into the workout. I have to tell you that I was fine with sacrificing that 200 yards for the one 25. There actually only ended up being 4 of us at practice (it was during the World Cup game) and three of the four of us made it without taking a breath. Thank goodness!

I actually did the same thing that I did yesterday at the bike ride and didn't turn on my watch. Since we started a little late and ended about 2 minutes early, I'd guess that we were probably only swimming about 50 minutes today. Still, it felt great to get back into the pool and I'm glad that I got one good swim workout in before the race.

Distance: ~ 20.00 miles

Time: 50:00
Distance: 2350 yards = 1.33 miles
Pace: 37:35/mile

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Expect This And Worse

Although this morning wasn't quite as hot as the past few days (it was only 76 at 5:30), when Robert got to practice this morning, he said, "Expect this and worse for race day." Golly, that makes me feel great about doing NYC. I'm trying to remember why I thought doing a triathlon in the middle of July was a good idea?

I didn't pay attention to the workout today. Well, I did a little bit. We were supposed to bike for 50 minutes and run for 30 minutes. The biking part involved a lot of percentages (like 10 minutes at 75% then 5 minutes at 80% then five minutes at 90% ... blah blah blah). I figured I'd just go out there and do my best. I always sort of think that those five minute increments take care of themselves in the Park between the hills and the recovery down hill.

The bike ride went really well, I thought. I'm still somehow on this kick of averaging over 15 MPH, which is crazy and awesome. I don't, however, have too high of hopes for the triathlon. I actually don't really know what the course is like when you head north out of the city. I know that going south will be fast and flat, but I'm fine with the element of surprise.

For today's run, we were supposed to head north from 72nd Street up to the Reservoir, then head back south back to 72nd Street, run around Cherry Hill fountain and then to Dead Road. All of this is a mini simulation of the NYC Triathlon run course. I actually would like to run the whole course before the race, if possible. Maybe Friday or Sunday?

I actually felt pretty good on the run today. My shins were a little tired during the first mile or so, but then started to feel just fine. I was wondering if that was the first indication that my running shoes are biting the dust and I should switch to the new shoes that I bought but haven't used yet. I guess I probably should decide that this week so I'm not using brand new shoes for the first time during the race. Hopefully I can take the new ones for a test drive this weekend.

After I was done with today's run, I was so happy to get back on the bike. It was so much cooler on the bike than on the run! Of course, I didn't notice that while I was actually biking. When I left the Park at 7:00, the temperature had crept up to 80, so it's good to know that it can go up so quickly that early in the morning. Right now the 15 day forecast says that the high on July 18 is 90, so I guess this is all good training for race day.

Time: 48:20
Distance: 12.50 miles (15.65 miles total)
Pace: 15.52 MPH
Calories: 406
Maximum HR: 173 (82%)
Average HR: 160 (75%)

Time: 26:28
Distance: 2.75 miles
Pace: 9:37/mile
Calories: 258
Maximum HR: 195 (92%)
Average HR: 175 (83%)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

It's Too Hot To Be A Triathlete

Yesterday's heat made me skip the Terrier run and made me question whether or not I really should be doing this triathlon in 11 days. When I woke up this morning and it was still in the record-breaking heat category, I still wasn't sure about doing the triathlon. I figured that if I stayed in bed today, that would be the sign of whether or not I would actually do the triathlon. I decided not to go outside, but to go to the gym instead. Might be wimpy, but I figured an indoor workout is better than no workout at all.

I started out by running 2 miles on the treadmill. Nothing earth shattering and sort-of boring, like most treadmill runs. But, I felt good while I was doing it and I watched some Sports Center on ESPN. I figured I'd do a bit of a duathlon today, just to see how I'd feel running/biking/running. I knew that if I could have a good workout today, I could talk myself back into doing the NYC triathlon.

After running 2 miles, I went and hopped on the spin bike. Which takes a lot longer than hopping on my real bike in a triathlon since there is a lot of adjusting that needs to be done. I will say that I know I didn't push myself as much as I could have on the bike. I was more concerned with reading my book than having a super awesome spin workout. Instead, I read my book and had a decent spin workout. After 10 miles on the spin bike, I headed back over to the treadmill.

Here is where I wasn't sure how much I should do. After a half-mile, my legs did feel a tiny bit tired, so I decided to just run quick mile and call it a day. I think it ended up being a really great workout today. I did about half the distances of the triathlon and I felt great at the end. Lots of gas left in the tank, which makes me think that I shouldn't have any issues getting to the finish line on July 18!

After today's workout, I think it's funny that I even had doubts. I'm not really sure why I did. I've been working out about the same number of hours per week that I did before Westchester last year and Alcatraz earlier this year. I actually don't have any doubts about my ability to finish the race, so I'm sure sure what the reasoning was behind my doubt. Probably just nerves.
Time: 19:32
Distance: 2.00 miles
Pace: 9:46/mile
Calories: 183
Maximum HR: 184 (87%)
Average HR: 171 (81%)
Spin Bike
Time: 30:08
Distance: 10.00 miles
Pace: 19.91 MPH
Calories: 226
Maximum HR: 171 (81%)
Average HR: 150 (71%)

Time: 8:39
Distance: 1.00 mile
Pace: 8:39/mile
Calories: 74
Maximum HR: 186 (88%)
Average HR: 164 (77%)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Weekend Update

Saturday started out my birthday with a great yoga class in Wisconsin at the Yoga One studio in Cedarburg. I was a little unsure of how I would do with my left arm in class, but I also knew that I wasn't going to be ashamed or embarrassed if I couldn't do everything. I definitely noticed after about 5 minutes that keeping my elbow straight for such a long time was making it a little bit sore. And once we started the vinyasas, I definitely noticed that putting lots of body weight on my straight arm wasn't the best.

I did the best I could and hung in there for most of the class. I couldn't do a couple of things and I chose not to do some other poses (like crow, for instance), but I was really glad that I went. Overall, I felt a lot better after class, even if I did leave with a sore elbow. It reminded me that I wish I was going more in my regular life and that perhaps after the NYC Triathlon training is done and over with, maybe I should incorporate more yoga in my life. I'll have no excuse not to!
The rest of Saturday was spent eating and shopping and getting a mani/pedi and eating some more. Not the worst way to spend a birthday! We got to bed at a reasonable time on Saturday night because there was a very big race to race on Sunday morning! Drew's sister, Kara, had mentioned a few months ago that she wanted to start running. I had e-mailed her some tips and things and she had started a run/walk plan. I suggested that she might enjoy having a goal in mind and I found the Dennis Krzykowski Memorial 5K which was taking place on July 4, when I knew we'd be in town. I thought it would be fun for all of us to run together.

It ended up that Kara's friend, Mara, and our friend, Eric, also decided to do the race, so there was a team of 5 of us participating. Drew's parents came out to cheer for us. Kara had come up with the great team name of "Mom's French Toast Brigade". Drew's mom makes the best French toast and we were all looking forward to breakfast after the race! Drew's mom is also an expert seamstress and made all of us some very fancy shirts to wear with our team name:

Drew & I pre-race:

We all walked over to the race start together to pick our packets and t-shirts and pinned our numbers on:

Pretty soon, it was time for the race to start. I figured that I'd carry my camera along with us for the race. Kara kept saying over and over again that this was a "fun run", so I thought that it'd be pretty fun to have some photos during the race! Here we are starting out:

And then Drew took the camera so that I could be in a shot:

These were both taken in the first mile. There were water stations at both the first and second mile marker, which was nice. I actually didn't look at my watch when we got to the first mile marker, so I don't know how long it was taking us, but I will say that I was having fun, so maybe that was the point!

Drew also took this video of us running towards him on our way to the first mile marker:

Somewhere between the first and second miles, we split off into two groups. Eric needed a bit of a walking break, so Kara, Mara and I ended up running ahead of Drew and Eric. We ended up running all the way to the second mile marker, but from there we ended up taking two short walking breaks along the way. The course itself was actually pretty challenging. There were definitely some good-sized hills that we had to run up, but it seemed to me like we never really got to run down any hills. I'm convinced that race directors do this on purpose.

It was pretty hot the whole time we were running and I was a sweaty mess after not too long. Luckily, a couple of really nice people had their sprinklers out so that runners could run through them if they chose. I definitely made that choice the two times it was an option! Funnily enough, one of the people who had their sprinkler out for the racers was an overweight man who was standing there smoking a cigarette while watching all the runners come by. To each his own, I suppose.

After Kara, Mara and I crossed the finish line, I had a couple sips of water and then ran back to look for Drew and Eric. I was able to snap this photo as they were heading towards the finish line:

I was so proud of Kara for saying that she wanted to start running then actually waking up early to go running before work and then doing and finishing the race! It even seemed to me that she sort-of likes running and that she might stick with it now that the race is over. I'm hoping that we can make this race a 4th of July tradition as I really did have fun!

Here's our whole group post race (this is a test -- these pictures are actually different. How many differences can you see?)

I thought that this was a great way to start the 4th of July and of course, after showering and cleaning ourselves up, we all had a wonderful breakfast of French Toast! I can't find any "official" results on the internet quite yet and I'm not really sure they'll ever appear, so I'll be fine going with my watch time! Drew and Eric finished a couple of minutes after the girls. I hope that everyone had as much fun as I did during the "fun run!"

Time: 34:39
Distance: 3.10 miles
Pace: 11:10/mile
Calories: 338
Maximum HR: 191 (90%)
Average HR: 175 (83%)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Cycling Is Hungry Work

Yesterday I really had every intention on going out for a ride. But then I didn't want to wake up. Which was okay, because I could go after work. Except I ended up having to stay late at work. So, the bike ride didn't happen. Oh well. I realize that maybe I should be taking this triathlon that I have in, um, 18 days, more seriously, but I've come to the realization that I'm doing this for fun. Get it people? No super secret time goals. Nothing. Just fun.

I've especially decided to embrace the fun aspect of doing the NYC triathlon this year since it looks like they'll be going to a lottery next year and that's no fun at all. If this is my one shot for a while, I might as well enjoy myself!

With that in mind, I know that I still need to keep up the workouts so that I can finish with a smile on my face. We'll be away for the long weekend in Wisconsin, so I won't be able to bike or swim there, so I figure I should get in some decent rides before we leave. This morning I headed out for some loops in the Park.

Again, I didn't want to kill my legs all in one go, so I figured I'd just do one loop and then try to keep it consistent from there. I think I finished the first loop in just under 24 minutes and then tried to not have that increase. Nothing too notable about the ride this morning. I think I had my shoes too tight because after doing the second loop, both of my feet felt like they were non-existent from being numb, so I stopped quickly and loosened the straps on my shoes and headed off for the third loop. So much better! I'm going to have to remember this on race day as I'm sure I have the tendency to over, rather than under, tighten.

My feet weren't the only thing on my mind this morning, though. Even though I ate about 200 calories before I left for my ride, I was starving about 40 minutes into it. Why is it that biking makes me so hungry? Is it because while I'm running my stomach is bouncing around a lot more and I don't notice if I'm hungry? Whatever it is, I was ready to gnaw my arm off by the time I got home today. As luck would have it, Drew was home from his workout earlier than usual and was in the midst of making breakfast when I walked in the door!

I ended up doing three loops this morning, which felt really good. I'm hoping to do the same tomorrow morning before we head off for the weekend. I'm pretty happy that I've consistently been at 15 MPH or over the last few rides. I understand this is a small victory for a lot of people, but it's nice to see that I'm slowly gaining ground on the bike. I had hoped that I would have spent a lot more time on the bike this year by now, but I figure that after NYC is over, I can just do whatever I want and get in some really good long rides and not have to worry about anything!

Time: 1:13:26
Distance: 18.45 miles (20.30 miles total)
Pace: 15.07 MPH
Calories: 596
Maximum HR: 171 (81%)
Average HR: 154 (73%)