Friday, January 11, 2013

2013 Looking Forward

Fast forward a year and I'm training, once again, for the hills of Sylamore.  The story reads  a little different this year.  I'm training for the 50K disnance instead of 25K and I have not had  pneumonia this year.  I'm in excellent running shape and I'm ready to conquer the elevation.  I have ran several training runs over 20 miles.  I must say I'm loving the peace and quiet of the woods.  No music in my ear this year, I'm truly living in each moment.... each footstep. 
I ran the Hill and Dale 8 miler last weekend, 3 times. Yes, a total of 24 miles of hills and switchbacks that will have your hamstrings screaming! I decided, since I drove the 30 minutes to do the race, and I needed a long run....2 birds, enjoy the hill training while I can.  I placed 3rd in age group as a plus.  I can assure you that laps 2 and 3 were in no way worthy of a placement. 
36 days until Sylamore and as much as I love my 25K sweatshirt (Sylamore has a very coveted sweatshirt among runners) I must say, I cannot wait to wear (and earn) my 50K sweatshirt!

Train Hard
Run Happy

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sylamore Trail Run 25K

To catch you up, since IM Florida, I was hospitalized for puemonia about 6 weeks post race.  Obviously, I did not take the post race recovery time seriously enough.  I barely took any time off,  probably not but a few days due to travel.  I did, however,  back down on number of workouts & intensity; still not appropriate recovery for an Iroman.  LESSON LEARNED. 
I, basically, I lost all my fitness durig my illness and had to rebuild once I gained my strength and energy back. At the beginning of 2012, I had to reevaluate my race schedule.  I had previously signed up for Hill and Dale 8 miler that is always one of my favorites.  I had, also, registered for Sylamore Trail Run 50K (to be my longest run) and New Orleans 26.2.  Once I returned to training, I began getting my fitness level back slowly, still not where I was but I'm happy with my progress.  I was really concerned about a relapse and continued to get chest xrays for about 6 weeks.  Finally, doc said chest xray was clear and that "I was ready to conquer the world"!  LOL  So I opted out of Hill and Dale 8 miler(with a green long sleeve Tshirt that I wll wear even though I didn't run the race).  I, also, backed down Sylamore from 50K to 25K and decided on the NOLA half instead of full marathon. 
Soooo, back to Sylamore ( I wish I could go back to Sylamore) the mountain elevation of the run was 3000' which was a rocky, twisty, absolutely beautiful trail.  Loved every step of this run and finished in 3:36. Contemplating doing the 50K in 2013??? 
NOLA half is a week from today, I'm not totally in 'race shape' but I'm totally looking forward to a flat race in such a fun place!!  ' time of my life'


Monday, November 21, 2011

IM FLORIDA 11-5-11

As the sun is rising, I am standing with my toes in the cold sand waiting for the cannon to explode so I can begin my Ironman adventure. Everyone says you should be nervous at this moment.   I checked myself and realized I felt excitement and not nervousness, thankfully.  I think my mind and body was well prepared  and that I knew I was up for the challenge of what the day had to give me. As I headed into the calm water, I was amazed at how quickly I got into a rhythm.  I got kicked in the face at the turn buoy, but other than that is was an enjoyable swim. The jelly fish kept to themselves! 
Swim:  1:32:12
T1: 13:47  long transition time but I'm not sure what I expected.  Everything went as planned.
It was exciting having my bike handed to me!  I clipped in and headed out where the wind immediatlly hit me. So many people around me did not appear to be confident on the bike.  I finally found a guy that was passing people at a good pace so i fell in behind him and stayed there for 35 miles....hence,  the drafing penalty at mile 25 for me! I did 4 minutes in the penatly tent, layed in the grass and got burrs all over me! The nice guys there picked them off of me (they didn't seem to mind very much) lol  Later I realized they missed one under my tri belt & it flet like a pin sticking me...ouch! In retrospect, that was the worst pain of the day so I'm good with that! At some point, a line from a song entered my head.  I kept hearing "I hope you had the time of your life".... over & over & over for miles & miles! I could not remember the artist or any other parts of the song. I stopped once to pee, probably around mile 50, and then again at the halfway point for my special needs bag. So ,with the song in my head and the wind all around me, I pedalled my heart out trying to make sure I saved enough for the run.  I unclipped safely and noticed that my legs felt good.  Okay, so my dismount wasn't anything special....will work on that! 
Bike 6:35:13  
T2: 5:42  much better T time...guess I was ready to run :)
I felt great off the bike, which surprised me.  I got into a nice easy pace and at mile one my calves both cramped.  Never have I had this problem.  Didn't want to overthink it, so I ate a banana, drank gatorade, and took enduralytes (more on nutrition later) I , also, stretched my calves for a minute; which I should have done in transition.  The cramps only lasted a mile or so and  I never had problems with my legs again.  I walked most water stops, stopped at porta potty a few times, bandaged one small blister on my toe; otherwise a pretty uneventful marathon.  (thank goodness). The thought did occur to me at mile 17 of the run that I was going to have a flat on my bike!  I was releived to realize I didn't have to worry about my bike any longer.  That was a sign it was almost time to start drinking Coke!
Run:  4:36:03 2:17/2:20 splits- very pleased with my consistency
My nutrition was what kept me feeling good the entire day.  I really listened to my body and did what was needed at the moment. 
Breakfast:  bagel w/ peanut butter, coffee, banana, Ensure+, power bars, gatorade, sips of water constantly,
Before swim:   about 30 minutes b4 swim Ensure+, 2 enduralytes
T1:  water & enduralytes, pb & honey uncrustable, Ensure+
Bike:  nutter butters, fig newtons, bars, uncrustables,  gummie fruits all broken up in bento box.  I ate a couple bites of something EVERY 5 miles.  I had Hammer Perpetuem mixed with gatorade in my bike bottle which I sipped in between bites.  I got water at every10 mile aid station for my aerobottle and made sure I drank it all every time!  I took enduralytes or salt tabs EVERY hour.  I drank another Ensure+ at the special needs stop which I had frozen in my special needs bag.  Perfect!  I ate 2 gels during the bike, mile 35 and 95. 
T2:  Another Ensure+, water & enduralytes
Run:  banana at mile one,  enduralytes & water every hour, alternated water & gatorade at every water stop,  4 gels during the run, 6. 12, 17, 22,  starting at mile 20, I had coke & water at every water stop.  No other food on the run except for the first banana. 
After the race,  finally sat down at the bar & consumed a burger & fries!
Recovery:   I was surprised at how well I felt, I was more sore after my first marathon.  I ran easy & biked just a few days after.  I really didn't stop completely until day 9, I got a cold/virus/ bronchitis with some nasty fever blisters.  I guess my body was yelling at me to stop.  Well, I've stopped for a week but I'll be back out there after Thanksgiving! 
PS  I could not be an IRONMAN without my family and friends who have made this adventure possible.  Thanks to ALL of you!


Thursday, October 27, 2011


I've always heard that taper is hard, and now that I'm in the middle of it, I understand perfectly.  It's not physically hard, because for the first time in months, I am doing shorter workouts which leaves more free time on my hands.  That free time is what is hard mentally, my mind is very restless.  I am so wired I can't seem to relax!  The mental focus ,though, is not there for mundane tasks around the house, I only want to think about the race.  I really am going to compare this to the excitement & nervousness leading up to my wedding or even the birth of my children.  I know you are saying NO WAY.  I'm NOT saying it is as important as those monumental days, but I have put forth more time and effort on this ironman journy, than on either my wedding or pregnancy.  I guess I'm saying that the focus on every workout is crucial, swimming, biking, runninhg can be dangerous if you lose focus; picking out a wedding dress isn't dangerous and pregnancy pretty much happens without much input from you.  For an Ironman, the daily 'choice' to get the appropriate training in is exhausting, not to mention the workout itself. 
So here I am with the work done, the packing list started, and my excitement soaring, ready to become an Ironman, Ironwoman, Ironmom...whatever you want to call it, it means 140.6 miles!!!
This week I have been advised to have fun with my workouts!  I have swam without counting laps, ran & biked without measuring distance, speed, or pace and enjoyed the beautiful fall weather.  I'm hoping to do the same on November 5th and ENJOY MY IRONMAN JOURNEY!!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Race day 26 days away

Had the longest training weekend of my life this past weekend.  A double brick starting from my driveway Saturday morning at 7 am and finishing at 3:30 pm consisting of 50 mile bike, 14 mile run, 30 mile bike, and a 3 mile run.  The garage functioned as transition area and aid station with food & fluidst was mid 60 temps at start and low 80's by the end, perfect weather!  I felt strong & consistent even on my last run.  I showered, rested, and ate until bedtime- which was 8:15 (I was alseep at 8:30).  I woke up at 6 and ate waffles and went back to sleep itll 8 and ate cereal. I slept close to 12 hours.  Sunday I swam my longest lake swim with a couple of friends & one in a canoe!  I wore race wetsuit & goal was to prepare mentally & test fitness.  I passed!  Swam 2.5 miles in 1:36- goal for Florida is 1:45; feel much more confindent about the swim.  Even got to swim with a Kona qualifier from a few years, I didn't keep up with her! Coaches say I need to take a recovery day today (DONE).  I'm blogging, logging workouts on daily mile, eating, and watching inspirational race videos on YouTube! (what a great day)...I need to clean house too but that's beside the point. ha
I had to cut a bike short last week because I just didn't have it.  After talking it out with Coach Al, looks like I'm not eating enough at dinner. Not a surprise at all in retrospect.  I came home and put together a nutrition schedule/checklist and put alarms in my phone for times to eat and snack! I kow I need fuel but at times it's hard to eat when I'm so tired and have no appetite becasue of fatigue.  My plan is to have meals planned ahead of time so they are ready to eat....seems it takes all my energy to feed the family and then I don't eat. ughhh....lesson learned!
I will share race week plans, etc during taper in a few weeks.

September Totals:
Swim 9m   5'48"
Bike  459 m   28'14"
Run   57m     9'46"
Total:  525m   43 hours 49min

Thursday, September 29, 2011

36 days to go...

Wow, race day is sneaking up on me! Only a few more weeks of high volume training and then it's taper time- decreasing the volume will be welcome. 

August brought a few races for me as well as school schedules for the kids.  The kids love their new schools and teachers- Always a plus when you move just  for that purpose!  My schedule called for a few olympic distance triathlons during late July & early August, but life got in the way of that.  Instead I opted  for a back to back sprint race which added together equaled close to OLY distance.  It was a triathletes weekend dream- Friday was the Sharpshooter "men's only" tri, Saturday was the Annie Oakley "women only" tri, and Sunday was the Showman Shooter tri which was co-ed.  If you participated in two you got a special finishers tee-shirt (and a few more calories burned).   I did the Annie Oakley on Sat and the Showman shooter on Sunday, to my surprise I won first in my age group BOTH days!  woot woot :) 
The other race on my schedule in Augsust was the Rocketman Olympic Tri in Huntsville, Alabama.  We opted to make a family trip out of this and take the kids to the Space Muesum on Saturday and I would do the race on Sunday.  I did the race on tired legs, needless to say, after walking around all day the day before.  I had a good race though, 4th in my age group.  I was really happy with my bike & run feeling really strong with each of those.  My swim was slow, at first I thought wow this feels good- Then I realized it felt good cause I did not push.....It. Was. Slow. I am working on pacing myself in the water. 
My B race of the season was Sept 10, Nashvegas 70.3.  I needed to use this race to gauge my fitness for my Ironman.  It was just the boost that I needed!  I cut off 20 minutes of my Cancun 70.3 time to finish 6:21.  I had a steady swim, felt really strong on the bike & run to pull out a 1st in my age group!  I was really pleased with my bike....especially since it was a hilly course.  The song "Run to the Hills" by Iron Maiden rang in my ears during the bike. I felt so good after this race, I was never sore.  I took only 2 days off to recover and then starting building again.  I did a 50 mile ride the next week and then a 100 mile ride Sat & 15 mile run Sun.  Then Tuesday went to the doctor with a cold!  Luckily I got a sinus cocktail shot and slept tons.  I took 4 days off to rest & hydrate.  Saturday after that, I did an easy 32 bike & Sunday an easy 6 mile run.  Not the numbers I wanted to post but hey, what are ya gonna do?  Lesson Learned.  Recover after a race.  Now, I am upping my vitamins, antioxidents, veggies, water etc.... It will do me no good to get to the start line if I'm sick. Period.  Feeling weak from that cold put a little scare into me.  I'm now on the building, resting , & staying healty training plan.  As I should have been all along.
My numbers for August:
Swim 15miles; 10 hrs, 14 min
Bike  479 miles; 28 hours, 50 min
Run 58 miles; 9 hours, 23 min

Total August Training:  551 miles; 48 hours, 28 minutes

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

IM Florida in 95 days.....

August, really?  We were so busy with our move that June and July flew by!  Moving a family of 5 is tougher than I imagined.  In my mind, I counted some of the move as cross-training workouts!  Lots of strength & cardio workouts carrying boxes up & down stairs! :)  Two weeks after we moved we went on vacation.  Geesh, we really needed it.  I did get an opportunity while at the beach to do 3 open water swims which I loved!  Also, I did my longest bike to date (82 miles) while on vacation and I did it alone.  I picked up a map from the local bike shop and used my gps, it was a good uneventful ride (thank God)!
I was hoping to do an olympic tri a month during June & July, but that didn't happen.  I did manage to do a few sprint triathlons and I have some longer races on my calendar.
 JUNE:  Dragonfly Tri: I think I did the exact same time as last year within seconds.
Swim:  8m  5hours 56 min
Bike:  311m   18hrs 44 min
Run:    59m    9hrs  47 min
June Totals:  379 miles 34 hours 28 min

JULY:  Annie Oakley Super Sprint Tri and Sharpshooter Sprint Tri 
           I did "The Challenge" which is both races the same weekend-one Sat & the other Sun.
           I was super excited to get 1st in my age group in both races! Great awards too :)
Swim:   6m   4hrs 8min
Bike:    312m  18hrs 37min
Run:      51m  8hrs 23min
July Totals:  369miles  31hrs 10min