Journey to 140.6 – Week 8

Week 8 to Ironman Canada

week 8

This week turned out to be a toughie.  It started out great and my energy was high, but by Friday, I was pooped and out of gas.  Thankfully, I still managed to get all my workouts in as planned.

One thing is for sure — my coach, Daryl, is serving me up some hard, but quality, training sessions.  It’s what I asked for, so I’m thankful despite being tired and a wee bit cranky at my legs.

Monday, February 18th – SWIM – 

45:00 – 4321 SWIM: 4×100 Easy, then 400 Steady 3×100 Easy, then 300 Steady 2×100 Easy, then 200 Steady 100 Easy, then 100 Steady All done on 10s rest, paddles/pb. +++ Cool Down

swim tyr

 (Took me 55 minutes to go the 2000 yards.  Used some paddles for some 100’s too.  Felt good!

Tuesday, February 19th – BIKE/RUN –

1:00:00 – 15min WU, then 10x[3min efforts, 1min easy], 5min easy spin. 3min efforts are odds steady, evens tempo.

30:00 – Run Steady effort off the bike – insert 1 minute walking in each 9 minute block.

bike run brick

(The bike session was an awesome sweatfest.  I lost the shirt after 5 minutes or so.  I also missed seeing the tempo and steady sets and ended up doing all efforts at tempo pace … whoops!  Afterwards, I ran 4 miles in 31:15 for an average pace of  7:49.  It felt great and my legs were full of speed tonight.

Wednesday, February 20th – SWIM –

45:00 – 400 WU, 3×400 at CSS pace with 45sec recovery, 400 CD.

bac swim pool

(Hardest swim set to date.  Those 400’s are killers!! I finished 2000 yards in 49 minutes.  For those of you who don’t swim — these are like running mile repeats on the track.  I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather do 400’s or 800’s on a track, as opposed to mile repeats!  So, for swimming …. I like when I have 100 repeats on the schedule, as these 400’s kicked my butt!  Mentally tough!!) 

Thursday, February 21st – BIKE/RUN –

1:00:00 – 10min WU, 3×12/3 minutes continuous as 12 minutes Steady then 3 minutes Mod-hard, 5min easy spin.

30:00 – Run off the bike for 30 minutes Easy and relaxed.


time to bike

coalminer run

(For the sake of ladies night out – I got up at 3:25 am to get this workout in.  Yes, you read that right.  It was still technically the middle of the night.  First came the bike, a complete sweat session as I caught up on the Bachelor, Sean tells all.  Yep, it’s true, I watch trash TV while cycling.  Then it was out the door for a little Coal-Miner run.  Dark and rainy, but it felt great! 3.8 miles in 30 minutes for an average pace of  7:54.  Sweet reward after — coffee! Mmm!)

Friday, February 22nd – LONG RUN –

1:30:00 – 30min easy, 30min steady, 20min tempo, 10min easy.

Pureconnect butterfly 

(This was a treadmill toughie.  I opted for the gym today as it was miserable outside and very windy.  The first 30 minutes were okay, but I was just feeling TIRED.  I went to bump up my speed in the next 30 minutes, but my legs were not having it.  They gave me about 15 minutes before telling me — OH NO YOU DON’T.  So, I listened and backed down a bit, and even… get this … walked a few times.  Yep … I was that pooped today.  Tempo was disappointing — as I know what I am capable of.  But, not today folks.  NO SIR.  NOT HAVING ANY PART OF IT.  Dang it anyhow.  Disappointing, but still happy to have put in the time.  Completed 10.6 miles in 1:30:00 for an average pace of 8:29.)

Saturday, February 23rd – SWIM

30:00 – Swim: 100s easy on 10s rest. Last 25 of even 100s fast.

(Here are those 100’s I love!  YAY!!  Plus, my legs were still upset with me from yesterday’s run … so the swim was a great way to rest them.  I completed 1200 yards in 29:30.)

Sunday, February 24th – LONG BIKE/RUN –

3:00:00 – 1 hour easy WU, On the bike there are two main sets to complete A. (3x) 12 min Steady effort/ 3 min Mod-hard effort – this is a continuous main set that lasts 45 minutes, B. (4x) 5 min Big Gear (70-80 rpm) with Mod-hard effort on 5 min Recovery Both of these main sets should be done in flat, or gently rolling, terrain. Spend as much time on the aerobars as possible. Ensure that you hydrate well; insert 15 minutes between the sets and have a large carbohydrate drink in this break.

30:00 – Run off the bike for 30 minutes Easy and relaxed.

3 hr trainer session bike


(For not feeling up to this — I just took it an hour at a time. I finished the entire enchilada and felt great about my efforts. I even nailed the sets and kept cadence high at all times except for last big gear set.  For that, I pushed about 75 rpms.  Don’t get me wrong — I was still tired as all get out, but I persevered — carried on and kept on pedaling.  I then ran 3.35 miles in 30 minutes for an average pace of 8:57.  Slow and easy on the treadmill.  Left hamstring a bit sore, but not so much I couldn’t run.  Felt great when I finished today.) 


Overall Training Hours completed for Week Eight: 10 hours 15 minutes

21.75 miles of running

90 miles of biking (estimate)

2.95 miles of swimming


Journey to 140.6 – Week 7

Week 7 to Ironman Canada

daily mile week 7

This week was a cut back week with only 6:30 hours of training.  I moved most of my workouts this week to fit in with my hectic schedule (family/work/anniversary/bdays/meetings/friends/out-of-town … just to name a few).  Normally, I’m a stickler for doing the plan given to me AS IS — but this week was shuffled all around.  Good thing for me, my coach is flexible and it was a relatively EASY week (meaning, not as many training hours).

Monday, February 11th – SWIM – 

30:00 – repeat 300 (30s), 200 (20s), 100 (10s) for duration, paddles/pull buoy, easy-steady effort.



Tuesday, February 12th – BIKE –

45:00 – 5×8 continuous, as lap 1 easy, lap 2 and 3 steady, lap 4 and 5 sitting at the top of your mod hard zone, 5min CD.


Wednesday, February 13th – RUN –

30:00 – Easy and relaxed.

early morning run

(This run was intended to be part of the brick last night, but I moved it to the morning to run with the DH.  🙂 Alarm was set for 4:45 am and we headed out the door by 5:00 am.  3.4 miles for an average pace of 8:49 

Thursday, February 14th – LONG RUN –

1:00:00 – Figure out the effort that you want to average (works best if it is a steady effort). Split your session into thirds: (a) under; (b) then at; then (c) slightly over your goal effort. Track pace, or power, across the workout. What you are looking for is the ability to lift pace/power in the final third when effort/HR is lifted. If you find that you are not able to lift pace/power when you lift HR then start with a lower effort benchmark next time.


me and meghan

(I was originally going to do this run on Sunday since I was going to be in Tacoma and I thought it would be easier to run while out-of-town as opposed to taking my bike AND running.  BUT – when Meghan asked what I was doing for my workout, I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to run with her.  It was her birthday after all!! Happy V Day AND Bday to Meghan!!  Dark and rainy — no big deal!  Just a titch over 8 miles in 1:09:00 for an average pace of 8:35.)

Friday, February 15th – LONG RIDE/RUN –

1:30:00 – Progress to Steady Ride:  Based on duration, split the ride into thirds: ***Easy effort for first third ***Steady effort second third ***Hold your Steady pace in final third, effort may increase a bit Always start at an effort that leaves you room to finish strong. This is an endurance session, keep the effort comfortably aerobic at all times.

30:00 – Run Steady effort off the bike – insert 1 minute walking in each 9 minute block, end with 4x30s Strides on 30s walking recovery.



(Picture says it all!! Great workout and a gorgeous day!!  oh, p.s. … I’m not so good at taking those walking breaks …)

Saturday, February 16th – REST

Today, I traveled to Tacoma to visit my mom and grandma — then off to see my daughter compete at the Tacoma Convention Center for Cheer.  I also got a fresh new crop!  I went shorter!!  My daughter and son DO NOT like it.  Daughter, said “well, it’s different.”  Son said, “you look like you’re in grade school.  Too weird mom. You’re supposed to be 40.”   Ummm – thanks??? I’m 41 son.

fresh crop

Sunday, February 17th – SWIM/BIKE/RUN –

45:00  – Swim: 300 WU, 4x(200 then 100) at CSS pace with 10sec recovery, 300 CD.

45:00 – Ride: 3×12/3 minutes continuous as 12 minutes Steady then 3 minutes Mod-hard, ease into the first 12min segment as a WU.

15:00 – Run off the bike for 15 minutes Easy and relaxed.

swim bike run

(I traveled back from Tacoma at around 11:00 today after maybe 5 hours of sleep with teenage girls.  So tired.  I almost passed up the pool altogether, but opted to just give it a whirl.  Even after the first hard set, I almost called it.  I was pooped – and – the sets were hard.  Swimming “fast” for me is HARD.  period.  BUT!!!  I did it — 1800 yards completed – in the allotted time.  wooHOO!  I went home and unpacked, then sat around and thinking about jumping on the bike.  Okay — I can do this.  And I did.  45 minutes went by in a jiffy, although I was sweating like a pig after only a few minutes.  Hard sets and fast.  Topped with a quick run – 2 miles in 15:30 for an average pace of 7:45. Overall – great training today.  I’m ready for bed!)



Overall Training Hours completed for Week Seven: 6 hours 41 minutes

17.3 miles of running

52.1 miles of biking (estimate)

1.9 miles of swimming


Journey to 140.6 – Week 6

Week 6 to Ironman Canada

daily mile week6

Here was my training plan from my awesome coach, Daryl, this week (plus what I actually did):

Monday, February 4th – REST – 

(Since I did my Monday swim on Sunday (see week 5) — I had myself a rest day!! YAY!!  A great night to spend with the family!)

Tuesday, February 5th – BIKE/RUN

1:00:00 Big Gear Bike:  Warm Up with 10 minutes Easy cycling, 5min steady, 5min easy. (5x) 4 min Big Gear (70-80 rpm), Mod-hard effort on 2 min Recovery 10 min Easy.

30:00 Steady Hill Sprint Run:  Steady effort run with 3-4x10sec hill sprints, walk back recoveries. Focus on quick hands an feet, lifting the knees aggressively, not pushing off.

bike run brick

(Great set pushing big gear around 81 RPMs – could have gone to harder gear.  Quick easy run off bike — treadmill.  After 15 min, did 4 x 10 sec hill sprints at 8% incline (about a 7:10 pace). 3.57 miles for an average pace of 8:24)

Wednesday, February 6th – SWIM –

CSS 12 x 100s:  4×100 WU, 12×100 at CSS pace with 10sec recovery, 4×100 CD.


Nothing better than wearing comfy sweats post swim!

(2000 yards — booyah!  Was aiming for 45 minutes, but it took me 49 minutes.  My sets for each 100 were around 2:15-2:20.  Would like to get this down.

Thursday, February 7th – BIKE/RUN –

1:00:00 Bike Ride: 10min WU, 3×12/3 minutes continuous as 12 minutes Steady then 3 minutes Mod-hard, 5min easy spin.

30:00 Steady Transition Run: Run off the bike for 30 minutes Easy and relaxed.

bike run brick

(Great bike workout.  Hard!  I was thoroughly soaked. Quick run off bike – felt good! 3.71 miles for an average pace of 8:05.  A few planks afterwards for dessert!)

Friday, February 8th – LONG RUN –

Progress to Steady 90:00 run:  Based on duration, split the run into thirds: ***Easy effort for first third ***Steady effort second third ***Hold your Steady pace in final third, effort may increase a bit Always start at an effort that leaves you room to finish strong. This is an endurance session, keep the effort comfortably aerobic at all times. Practicing Run:Walk Technique is highly recommended.

F3 shirt


Sporting my F3 tech shirt!  Get one here!




Ran in my new Brooks PureFlows.  Love them!! 

(The best thing about this run was the location!  I love running in Bellingham.  I felt good starting off, but then lost my mojo as I was just pooped — nonetheless, I pushed through.  Two reasons for feeling poopy – not enough pre-run fuel and the brick from yesterday was late at night, so not much rest in between workouts.  Here were my splits:: 8:36, 8:16, 8:13, 8:20, 8:24, 8:11, 8:09, 8:46, 8:14, 8:15, 8:06 — Ended up just a titch long with 1:31:29 – 11.00 miles total for an average pace of 8:19)

Saturday, February 9th – SWIM – WORK!

4×300 on 20s rest. Easy, steady, tempo, easy.

(BOO!! First missed workout!!  I was so looking forward to this swim too!  I got called into work at 3 am and worked ALL day.  Had a two hour nap in the middle of the day, went back to work and came home at 11:45 pm.  Yeah — so literally, no time for swimming.)

Sunday, February 10th – LONG BIKE/RUN –

3:00:00 Strength Ride: Ride as 30min easy, then steady riding with mod hard tempo climbs

30:00 Run: Run off the bike for 30 minutes Easy and relaxed.

me and roxie riding


me and rox riding




protein shake


Post Ride/Run Fuel:  

Chocolate Protein Smoothie ~

two bananas; almond milk; almond butter and Bioplex Chocolate Whey Isolate Protein.  Yummy!

(Awesome outdoor ride with Roxie and her husband Rusty!  I rode to their house, which is a little over 2 miles away from mine and off we went.  It was gorgeous out today, but still rather chilly, so I dressed warm.  We rode 45 miles in 2 hours and 40 min, so I made up the difference by my ride to and from their house.  I went a little longer on my return trip which gave me a total of 50.5 miles overall.  Yippee!  My furtherest ride this year!!  Then off I went for a quick run.  Legs felt a bit heavy and I felt like I was going rather slow, but when I looked down at my watch, I was doing an 8 min pace.  What?  Ok, I’ll take it!  3.8 miles in 30 minutes for an average pace of 7:54.  Splits: 8:03, 7:52, 7:41, 7:38)

Overall Training Hours completed for Week Six: 8 hours 53 minutes

22.08 miles of running

86.5 miles of biking (estimate)

1.13 miles of swimming


Three Things Thursday

1.  The Bachelor.  It’s my guilty pleasure while doing my indoor trainer.

Guilty pleasure - Bachelor

2.  Brooks T7 Racer.  Just tried them yesterday for the first time.  Minimal and very light weight.  I like them!  I think I will use them for my next 5K!!

Brooks T7 racers


3.  Vitamins!!  These are the BEST tasting vitamins of all time.  I seriously love them and look forward to taking them everyday.  And, no … I’m not preggo, but why not?  My good friend, Jess, got me hooked.  And, yes – she’s preggo.



What are your 3 Things Thursday?

Cheers to December

December is my favorite month.

Christmas is my favorite holiday.

Hustle and bustle flow through my veins, with shopping and decorating and cleaning and working and running and baking and parties and planning and wrapping and gifting and … on and on and on …

…. I thrive in this crazy commotion topped with tinsel and bows.  I swoon for all things sparkly and shiny.  I love creating packages filled with love and don’t expect anything in return.  I simply LOVE to give.  Not just presents — but smiles and love and joy and inspiration.  This is what I love about Christmas.  I’m often asked what I ‘want’ for Christmas.  I want to be surrounded by my family and friends, enjoy cheer and make merry.  I love dressing up and I also love bundling up by the fire.  An added bonus is always SNOW.

As I reflect on this December, here are some of my favorite moments::

Half Marathon PR !
Half Marathon PR !
Ladies luncheon at the Bellingham Golf and Country Club
Ladies luncheon at the Bellingham Golf and Country Club
Making cookies with the kids
Making cookies with the kids
Ornament & Cookie Exchange at CJ’s house
annual fireplace photo
Annual Fireplace Photo with my Besties
Brand New Ornaments! This is my favorite -- a gift from CJ!
Brand New Ornaments! This is my favorite — a gift from CJ!
Merry Martini Party at my house with 30 of my best girlies! Here's one of them -- Meghan!
Merry Martini Party at my house with 28 of my best girlies! Here’s one of them — Meghan!
Surprise handmade gifts that come in the mail! Thank you Rebecca!
Surprise handmade gifts that come in the mail! Thank you Rebecca!
New Friends!
New Friends!
Old Friends!
Old Friends!
Sweet Cards that come in the mail!
Sweet Cards that come in the mail!
Hosting Wine Group at our house!
Hosting Wine Group at our house!
Making Party Favors!
Making Party Favors!
Selected for my 5th year as part of the Brooks Inspire Daily Team! Woot!
Selected for my 5th year as part of the Brooks Inspire Daily Team! Woot!
Meeting another triathlete; bee-keeper; musician extraordinaire -- Michael Stribling. Thank you for the comp tickets to The Celts performance at the Mt. Baker Theatre!!
Meeting another triathlete; bee-keeper; musician extraordinaire — Michael Stribling. Thank you for the comp tickets to The Celts performance at the Mt. Baker Theatre!!
So thankful to have Daryl Smith coaching me for 2013 Ironman Canada! Training starts December 31st!
So thankful to have Daryl Smith coaching me for 2013 Ironman Canada! Training starts December 31st!

…. so, Cheers everyone! I raise my glass to you!! xoxo


Las Vegas Rock ‘n Roll Race Report

I flew into Vegas on Friday, December 1st, and promptly checked in to my hotel — The MGM Grand.  I couldn’t wait to get over to the Expo – located at the Sands Convention Center, inside the Venetian, so I unpacked and organized my clothes as quickly and neatly as humanly type A possible, and then made my way to catch a taxi.

I forgot how expensive taxi’s are in Vegas.  Ridiculous!!  At any rate, I made my way over to the Expo and found it to be well organized.  A huge open space to pick up race numbers according to your corral (I was in corral 2), then onto picking up my tech T — by Brooks!  Finally, the swag bag, full of mostly brochures, but I like them empty so I can fill it with goodies from the expo.

check in

Race Bib:

Race Bib

First stop, Brooks Cavalcade of Curiosities!


Have I mentioned how much I love Brooks? I won a t-shirt and tried my hand a new pair of shoes (I didn’t win the shoes).

I made my way through the expo, had a few healthy protein nibbles and was back at the hotel and ready for bed by 8:30 pm.  Exciting for Las Vegas right?! But hey – I had a race to run!!

The next morning, I met my friend from Virginia and we made our way to the Expo so she could get her race packet. I chilled all day in this attire (not very Vegasy, I know):

run happy cupcake

(I love this Brooks Run Happy Cupcake Tech T — so soft and comfortable.  I also wore my CEP compression socks all day!)


So the race didn’t start until 4:30 pm.  I knew I didn’t want to eat much of anything, so my last meal was around 10 am and consisted of eggs, ham, and an english muffin.  Nothing more until after the race.

Brooks race kitRace ready!!

yellow shoesResting my legs before the start.

So … the start::

I almost missed my corral.  I was in the longest porto-potty line EVER! By the time I got out, they had just started Corral 1.  I sprinted nearly 1/2 mile, dodging and weaving and about 100 “excuse me’s” through the masses of other runners and spectators.  By the time I made it to the start, Corral 2 had already taken off and the runners were at least 300 feet down the road …. ACK!!  So, I started … SOLO …. as Corral 3 was still being held back at the start line.  hee hee … 🙂 Why not?

I quickly found my pace and held stead fast.

WHOA — wait …. what’s this?


Sideways, hard, pushing.  UGH.  This is not going to be fun.  Stay focused I told myself.  Get in behind others and keep moving forward.  So, that’s what I did. I felt good during the entire race and enjoyed seeing the STRIP AT NIGHT! At about mile 8, I had 1/2 a gel, and I only took in a few sips of water.  At mile nine, I was coming into the back side of Freemont and saw a spinning stiletto heel.  ….. LOVE!

Turning back towards the Bellagio, total headwind, HARD, for the final 3 + miles.  Everyone I tried to get behind was slowing way down, so I just pushed harder to catch someone else to run behind.  I found a skinny dude and followed him for about 2 miles, until he stopped to walk.  WHAT?! We are almost done!!  I kept at it, pushing, knowing that I would PR.  And, a PR, I did!!


Now for the nitty-gritty:

Yes – I did PR … but, I almost started crying when I finished.  I looked down at my GARMIN, which showed I had an average pace of 7:45 and 13.23 miles in 1:42:44.  How is my time not closer to a 1:40:00 ???  I was shooting for a 1:40:00.  A 7:51 average pace should have given me a 1:40:00.  What the heck?

garmin results

I asked other runners what their Garmin’s read.  Everyone I talked to said their Garmin’s showed 13.2 something.  That’s it — the course was long!

Wait — it could haven’t been another 2 minutes.  Still dumbfounded — I just couldn’t get past why I didn’t come closer to a 1:40:00, especially after running a solid 7:45 average pace.  DANG!

I tried to brush it off as best as I could and feel great about my performance and my PR, but still …..

I met up with my old high school buddy, Eric, and his wife, Sharon, for a night of fun.  Here is our after race photo:

after race photo

It wasn’t until the next day that I found my training mistake ….

For whatever reason, my last few runs were at marathon pace, not at 1/2 marathon pace.  So I had 7:51 stuck in my head, not 7:36 …

This, my friends, is what I call my DUMB ASS training moment #537

Overall — this was a fantastic race and I’m glad it was a solid effort and performance.  No injuries – great running – and awesome friends to train with.

This is what I call SUCCESS!

Three Things Thursday

***ACK!  It’s been a week and I missed my blogging.  To my credit, I was in Vegas Friday through Tuesday and follow that with two 10 hour days of work and you have one tired girl!

Here are my Three Things Thursday to get me back on track:

1.  I ran a race on Sunday!!  Not just any race, I ran the Vegas Rock ‘n Roll 1/2 Marathon!!  A race re-cap will be forthcoming (I promise)!  For now, here’s a sneak-a-peek:


2.  YES! This was a PR (Personal Record) for me!! WOOT!  My previous best was a 1:44:37 in 2008 at the Holualoa Tucson 1/2 Marathon.

ASIDE from the PR, my biggest achievement was coaching two athletes to their very first 1/2 marathon!! One was from Virginia (who I had never met until Saturday) AND the other was a co-worker of the hubs that had no real plan until I sent him one.  BOTH of these athletes did fantastic during their training and nailed the 1/2 marathon on Sunday despite the EPIC headwinds.  I’m so excited for their next races and am grateful to have been a part of their very first 1/2 marathon experience.  Thank you Rebecca and Jeff!

3.  A special shout out to Brooks Running for selecting me the last 4 years to be a part of the Inspire Daily team.  I wore their race kit proudly Sunday!

Brooks race kit

Three Things Thursday

1. I’ve been addicted to Frosty the Finger Puppet since Black Friday. He’s taken over my Instagram and has his own hashtag: #frostythefingerpuppet

I also thought it would be fun to share the love of Frosty with a couple of IG friends. One of which is @emysue — she just got Frosty today and began snapping up her own fun pics!! I love it!

The next person to get Frosty is a surprise! I will let you know soon!

Here one of my favorite Frosty pics from this week:

I called this one: Glamour Shots

2. I leave for Vegas tomorrow!! ACK!! I’m not even packed yet — well, sort of packed. I have my running clothes ready to go, if that counts. I think it does — I mean, really — the most important thing is my race attire, if you ask me. I narrowed it down to four outfits and posted to my IG friends for their input.

Here are the choices:

My IG friends are mostly split between the top RIGHT and the bottom RIGHT.

Do you spy #frostythefingerpuppet in each photo? 😉

ALSO — Which outfit do you like best?

3. I got a package from the Fed-Ex man tonight! Here’s my loot:

3 pairs of Injinji Socks and an assortment of GU Energy Gels and GuBrews!

Where did I get all this cool loot? Well, my Twitter Friend @milelonglegs was having a giveaway on her blog (which I entered and won!)

Thank you @milelonglegs!


ps …. I must to go to bed now … alarm is set for 4:30 am – one more run before I leave for VEGAS! Woot!

pps … What are your Three Things Thursday?