Crash, Collarbone, and Coming Back

Crash — check.

Collarbone — broken.

Coming back …. work in progress.

A little over six weeks ago.  The day was Sunday.  The date was July 13th.  It was going to be a long training day with great friends.  We were one week out from Chelanman, an Olympic distance triathlon.  I met Roxie and Rusty at Lake Padden for a swim, which oddly I have no recollection of whatsoever.  I know we swam, I just can’t recall ANY of it, not even driving to the lake or what I ate for breakfast that morning.  But, I know I swam and then we all set out for a long 50+ bike ride with a run to follow.  This date was also going to mark my 54th day of running straight.  My runstreak was going amazing!

I do recall some of my bike ride from Lake Padden to Chuckanut.  I also remember passing a unicyclist and taking a picture of him behind me.

biking cycling unicyclist

I almost hit this weird patch in the pavement along Chuckanut Dr and my heart was racing, thinking I was going to crash.  I didn’t however.  Not then …

biking cycling selfie

As Roxie and I were coming out of Chuckanut Dr and onto the Skagit Flats, Rusty was about 200 feet in front of us.  We were riding comfortably side by side in our aero position.  AND, we just so happened to be talking about how nice it was to be able to ride next to someone and feel completely at ease knowing that neither one of you would make any overt moves to put the other in danger.

and then …

BAM!

Without warning, it was like our front tires were magnetized, as they sucked in with such force and sent both of us flying.  In less than a second, we tasted pavement.  There was no time to react or think in this split second, we were already down before the thought popped in my head.

Our speeds had been between 21 and 24 mph, which propelled the both of so violently that neither of us could do anything to recover or break the fall.  I went down directly on my right shoulder and spun around on my right shoulder-blade.  I could feel the loose gravel below me, hot and burning.  I had no idea where my bike was, but I looked ahead of me and could see Roxie about 15 feet away on her back and looking at me.

I was grabbing my right arm and trying to get up to get to her.  I was kicking my legs and yelling for Roxie, apologizing because I had no idea what had just happened.  Rusty came running back to us and I could hear him telling me to stay still.  I could hear Roxie calling to me and apologizing too and all I wanted to do was get over to her to make sure she was okay.

I was a mess.  Something hurt so incredibly bad, it was a type of pain I had never felt before.  I realized I was grabbing my right upper arm and holding it close with my left hand, but did not know why.  I had never broken a bone in my life … surely this couldn’t be broken.  Just badly bruised I’m sure.  Maybe not … it hurt like hell.  OH DAMN!

I was pissed.  Thoughts of my race the following weekend went through my head.  This could not be happening.  Get me up.  Roxie!  Someone call my husband.  Mother F’er!  Aaaggggghhhhh NOOOOO!

Volunteer firefighters showed up and they were kind.  My RoadID was on my wrist but the older volunteer couldn’t understand to read the number, so I just gave him my husband’s number.  It didn’t matter though because Rusty had already called Dean.  Rusty was taking care of the both of us.  The first ambulance arrived and took Roxie because she hit her head hard and was in and out of consciousness.  I was sick to my stomach.  What the hell just happened?  All I could picture was our wheels coming together and the sound of the metal tangling and throwing us.  I just cried.  BECAUSE I was mad, pissed, confused, hurt, and sad that Roxie had been injured.

The second ambulance came for me and before they even tried to move me, they started an IV and gave me some pain meds.  More flowed in the ambulance and I remember taking one photo …

ambulance ride bike shoes

 

The emergency room was a blur.  I think I was on so many pain meds by this time.  My husband and daughter showed up and I immediately started bawling and apologizing.

bike crash road rash

The x-rays were taken right in my room and showed a broken right collarbone …

broken collarbone

 

I was told that most people don’t have surgery for a broken collarbone and it would possibly heal on its own, but since it was broken in more than one place with fragments in between, I might want to think about seeing an orthopedic surgeon for surgery.  I made my way to Roxie’s room as we were both being discharged at the same time.  Just walking a few feet to her room, I broke out in a sweat and had to sit down.  It was not a pretty site and I felt nauseous.

ER broken collarbone sick

We finally made it out of the hospital and picked up our bikes, which were so graciously taken to the nearby fire hall for safekeeping.  The ride home was a pukefest and I felt horrible for my family having to listen to me.  It hurt so bad to throw up because I didn’t have anything in me to throw up and it was moving my shoulder all around.  UGH!

The next several days were spent high on pain medications because the pain was quite literally, the worst I had ever felt.  It hurt to sleep, to move, and I was a dirty mess!  I was frustrated that I couldn’t get into the orthopedic surgeon until Friday, July 18th, five days after my accident.  However, once I did get in, the doc wanted to get me in for surgery right away to fix my collarbone, which was the first bit relief I had all week.  Finally, someone to fix it!  I offered him all sort of gift cards and incentives to fix it right then and there that day, but he laughed and said he liked my motivation, but suggested Tuesday afternoon.   Tuesday it was!

Surgery day:  July 22nd.  I was excited and nervous.  I just wanted to be fixed and whole again.  Surgery was uneventful for me as I was under a pain/nerve block and anesthesia.  Once the both of those wore off … sometime the next day …

ohhhhhh man …

WORST PAIN EVER!  Even worse than the initial bike crash.  What did I do?  How long will this last?  And, my pain meds weren’t even cutting through the pain.  Thankfully, the worst of the pain was over within 48 hours and I was just really uncomfortable for the next week.  My daughter was magnificent and took such awesome care of me, keeping me on schedule with my pain meds.  The next week was spent in bed, watching a bit (or a lot) of Netflix and sleeping.  I had never slept so much in my life!

Every day was better and better and I went off all my pain meds one week post surgery.  I signed up for another 70.3 (Oceanside) and also planned my first 50K in December.  Hey … I’m an optimist!

But, even optimists have their days of disappointment.  For me, this came 3 weeks post surgery at my first follow-up appointment with my surgeon.  I was ready to start physical therapy and most of all, run again!  I was all smiles while I waited.  I envisioned the doc telling me that I was ahead of most of his patients.  I mean, after all, I was off all my pain meds completely after just one week post surgery and I was starting to feel good.  (confession:  I may have also googled PT exercises post CB surgery and tried doing a couple of them on my own using pain as my guide … I will soon find out that this was NOT a good idea.  A very bad idea in fact).

He had me go take some X-rays and then I waited.

…. then … the worst news:

my collarbone was STILL BROKEN.  What?!!! How can it still be broken?!  I was so dumbfounded and upset.  I was told not to move it AT ALL and keep it in the sling if I wanted it to heal properly.  I told my doctor that I had been doing a couple of very easy exercises and was promptly told to stop doing that.  I was told that I was NOT to use pain as my guide because I had no concept of pain … huh?

The doctor leaned in, looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Gina, you are an Ironman.  You can’t use pain as your guide.  You have no concept of pain.”

Point.  Taken.

 

broken collarbone surgery plate

I left the office feeling an all time low.  What a setback.  More sling life.  BUT!  Two positives:  he told me I could drive and I could cycle on my trainer sitting up and keeping my arm tucked in.  DEAL!

Other stellar positives include my wonderful friends and family who have gone out of their way to make my recovery the best.  I have received the most beautiful flowers, food, magazines, friends spending their time with me, phone calls, and texts.  My heart has been overwhelmed with the support.  One friend even sent me his ultrasound device to heal broken bones.  To those friends and family who have been there for me or have thought about me … I thank you!  It has meant the world to me.

AND … as most of you know, I haven’t been just holed up in my house.  I have been able to get out and about with some help and below are some of my favorite outings:

 

ironman whistler olympic rings

 

fragrance lake hike broken collarbone

 

spirit lake broken collarbone

 

SUP broken collarbone

 

Lake Stevens 70.3 Ironman broken collarbone

 

smokes birthday broken collarbone

 

family broken collarbone

 

driving starbucks broken collarbone

 

cycling trainer broken collarbone

 

One more week and I see the doc again (Sept 5th).  Praying for some good news … like perhaps I can go back to work and also RUN again!

 

 

IM 70.3 St. George Race Report

IM 70.3 St. George (StG) is an EPIC race of GRAND proportions.  And, hopefully, this race report will do it justice and give you just a little taste of what the race was like.  Epic and Grand? Yes, totally! And, during this writing, I might think of some other awesome, stellar, dynamite adjectives to add!

 

IM 70.3 St George

 

Preface:  I have been training for IM 70.3 St. George since January, with IM 70.3 Oceanside as my warm-up.  It was on tap to be my “A” race this year.  My goal was sub 6 and I knew I was capable of that.  In fact, I just hit a new PR in Oceanside just 5 weeks prior and I was (am) in the best racing shape I ever have been in.  I was feeling very strong and confident going into this race.

Pre-Race:

I flew into Las Vegas the Thursday before the race and met up with some great friends.  I rented a van and drove a couple of hours to StG, where I had rented a condo.  This was my first time flying with my bike, so I was nervous as heck that something would not go back together right.  My nerves settled as my friend, Josh, was able to help me put it all back together.  (**A special thank you to Brent for helping me pack my bike and to the Bellingham TRI Club for the bike box loaner).

bike box triathlon travel

 

friends at airport

 

Steph, Josh, Angelina, Me, Ginger, Doug and Stephanie below
Left to Right:  Steph, Josh, Angelina, Stephanie, Me, Ginger, Doug

 

 

On Friday, I did a mini shake-out brick, consisting of a 20 minute bike ride and 10 minute run.  Josh and I did this together near the condo, while our other friends (not racing) were out for a long ride together.  Josh went to meet up with the girls, and I went to the expo.

shake out bike ride triathlon

Expo/Packet Pick-up:

Ironman Village, was located in the Town Square of StG.  It was only a 10 minute drive from my condo.  Plenty of parking and easy access.  The expo had outdoor booths with vendors and the packet pickup had a tent with a long line.  I waited and finally entered the tent.  The day was hot and there was no shade, except for when I was inside the tent.  The packet pick-up was seamless and I was off to see what the Ironman Merchandise tent had.  I bought just a couple of t-shirts and water bottle.

athlete village St George expo

I met up with Josh and the crew sometime after 2 pm and we headed out to check our bikes in at T1 – Sand Hollow Reservoir.  We located the area and took some stunning photos of the water.  It was so hot out and this was the first time I really thought about how the heat (THIS heat) might affect me on race day.  It was dry and HOT.  The temps called for mid 90’s on race day.  It was low 90’s when I checked my bike …. uhhhhh … okay then.  I can do this!  I practiced with heat at home on the trainer.  Long sleeves and a wool cap.  That should be the same.

***(insert wide eyes here optimistic but realistic scared look here)***

Sand Hollow Reservoir Beautiful

Sand Hollow Reservoir
A pano shot of the entire swim course!

Trek Speed Concept racked at St George

Race Morning:

3:45 am wake-up.  A cup of coffee, 1/2 a bagel with peanut butter and a banana.  I got ready and we were all out the door by about 4:30.  We went straight to T2, near the athlete village and dropped our run bags.  We then said our goodbyes to our crew and we boarded the buses to the start.  The drive seemed to take forever.

race crew
Kim and Marco (far left) were also racing!

Once at the T2, I made my way to my bike and filled my tires with air, got my hydration bottles ready and laid out my bike gear.  Two more trips to the porto-potty and I was good to go.

josh and I getting ready

I met up with Ginger, Jazzy, Steph and Angelina for some last photos and before I knew it, I was in the water.

Jazzy and Ginger see me off
Jazzy and Ginger see me off

 

swim start St George 70.3

Another friend from the F3 community was in my wave and it was so nice to have someone there with me.  Thanks Kim!  This was her very first 70.3 and I was so excited for her, that I forgot about my own nerves.

Kim and I talking race.  You've got this!
Kim and I talking race. You’ve got this!

Race:

The swim started in the open water.  I had exactly 3 minutes to get to the red buoys in the water before the air-horn would blow for my start.  From the pictures above, they don’t look at that far away, but they were!  I didn’t even make it to the red buoys before the the air-horn blew.  Dang it.  I’m already behind.  I started my Timex and started my race.

Head down, I told myself to relax and just swim.  I had really worked on my swimming the past 3 months and knew I was capable of sub 48 minutes if I really worked.  I wanted to get 45 or less truth be told.  I held my own and could feel others swimming by me from the wave starts after mine.  I was clawed at, hit, and grabbed.  I maintained my position and kept swimming.  The water started out cold (60 degrees), but I soon warmed up after about 10 minutes.  I was breathing hard, reaching and pulling.  Trying hard to focus on being relaxed and not slowing down.

Before I knew it, I was headed in and hit the mat running.  I looked down and saw a 45 something on my Timex …. WHAT????!!!!! YES!!!!!!  A huge smile formed across my face.  I was so proud of myself.  I did it!!  It was at this very moment, I decided I didn’t care what the rest of my day looked like, I was so happy with this accomplishment.  (If you have followed my triathlon journey, you know I didn’t even know how to swim just a few years ago).

credit: Finisherpix
credit: Finisherpix

Wetsuits strippers peeled my suit and I was running to my bike.

My bike … where was my bike?  I was turned around and it took me a little bit to find it.  Mistake #1, but not a biggie.  I still had a faster transition time than I’ve ever had!  I was off and pedaling.

t1 bike St george

The bike … Oh the awesome, amazing bike!  This truly was the course of all courses for beauty and scenery.  I took it all in because it was breath-taking.  It was also the hardest bike course I’ve ever done.  The hills never seemed to stop and the descents were sparse.  I felt solid on the bike and took in plenty of fuel for the run.

credit: Finisher Pix
credit: Finisherpix

Coming into T2, I could not locate my run bag.  It took me an extra 30-45 seconds.  Mistake #2.  When I finally found my spot, I racked my bike and quickly changed shoes.  I grabbed my run belt with bib, visor and water bottle.  I was off.

Running out of T2
Running out of T2

It was hot out and I pushed it out of my mind for all of about 2 seconds before I thought about it again.  Dang … it’s hot!  Shuffle.  Small steps.  Just keep moving.  My coach, Daryl, told me if I was breathing too hard, to slow down.  Okay then, I was breathing hard and I was in the first mile.  Granted the first 3 miles are all uphill.  Not just little hills, they gradually became bigger by mile 3.  It was about this time, I thought my head just might pop off my body.  My head was seriously throbbing and my face felt hot, like steam was coming out of my ears.  I fueled at every aid station and dumped ice down my top and shorts to cool my body temp.  Nothing seemed to be working.

I will admit at this point, about 3.5 miles in … I thought about stopping at a medical tent and calling it a day.  I had PR’d my swim after all and had an amazing bike ride.  I just could not get the throbbing in my head to stop and I was not sweating.  My clothes were wet from ice, but my skin was bone dry.  I thought I might have a stroke or something my head hurt so badly.  I walked.  I thanked the volunteers.  I tried to stay positive because that is who I am.  I thought about everyone cheering for me and eventually I kept putting one foot in front of the other and kept at it for miles.  So many thoughts swirling in my head: Why did I sign up for this race again?  I am never doing another Ironman.  I think I like sprint TRI’s.  Yeah, those sound nice.  I do not like hot weather for racing.  Me and Heat don’t get along.  Ginger can’t do this race, so buck up and get going!  Mikey would have killed this course.  I loved the Yoga I did last night.  Oh — that’s a cute TRI suit.  Oh, HI! Where are you from? I wonder where Josh is.  Is it almost over?  These volunteers are so friendly.  Oh, see … he’s walking too.  Eek, does he know those black tri shorts are see-thru?  Just say no to crack buddy.  Looking strong Michelle!  Run to that bush.  Where is the shade?  There is no shade here.  Oh, photo op … start running and smile …. the random thoughts go on and on.

The scenery was gorgeous, but to be honest, I had a hard time enjoying it because I was suffering.  I was not cramping however, which is the best news of all.  I continued to jog/run/walk.  In no particular order.  In the last two miles, I put the hammer down and just wanted to be done.

run St George 70.3 Ironman

ironman 70.3 St George finish running

Post Race:

Upon crossing that finish line, I was greeted by the nicest lady who helped me.  I was not feeling well.  At all.  She asked me if I wanted to go to medical, but truth is, I didn’t know what I wanted.  I saw my friends and thanked her for her time.

finish line volunteer St George

As I continued to exit the finishers area to meet my friends, my emotions overcame me and I started to bawl.  Not cry … bawl.  I’m not sure exactly what overcame me in that instant, the heat, the accomplishment of being done, my friends, the fact I didn’t feel well, or all of the above. Thankfully, my friends knew just what I needed … shade.  And ICE.  Angelina ran over to grab some ice from the medics and put some on the back of my neck and head.  This did the trick because in about 10-15 minutes, I felt so much better.

We found Josh and took a few photos and grabbed food.

josh and me St George finishers

It sank in … I finished!  My fifth 70.3 distance.  I was happy and I was not going to be let down by my overall time.  Why should I? There was too much to be thankful for.

Thankful take-a-ways:

*Swim PR (45:51)

*T1 PR

*It was the MOST beautiful course — EVER!

*I finished (and I have the medal to prove it!)

*I had the best friends there for me (Thank you Josh for racing with me; and to Ginger, Jazzy, Stephanie, and Angelina for cheering me on all day.  Also thank you to Doug and Stephanie for meeting me at the airport!)

*I had friends who wanted to race today, who were registered to race, but were not able to.  I thought of them during my race! ❤

Finisher medal St George IM 70.3

A few more Memorables:

1.  I did not wear my Garmin.  The day before the race, I knew I did not want to be dependent on my pace/time.  I needed a stop watch for fueling, so I opted for my simple Timex for time only.  This was a good call.

2.  The volunteers were the best EVER.  Like EVER.  In all the races I’ve ever done … StG volunteers take the cake!  I had all the ice, all the coke, all the love from the run course.  Simply awesome!

3.  Thank you to Gatorade Endurance for my fueling!  The G Endurance Carb Energy Chews are the best!  I am proud to be an ambassador for this company!

4.  The entire race experience was unforgettable.  In every way, even the hot run, I am so thankful for it.  I now know what it feels like to be in an oven (on broil) and trying to run at the same time, up hill.  That is the best analogy I can give you.

5.  I have the best friends.  They came from San Diego, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and San Francisco.  Each one of them inspires me.

swim bike run St George

 

 

Happy One Year Blogiversary to Me!

hooray

It’s hard to believe one year has actually gone by since I started my happyTRIgirl blog!  I have loved sharing my workouts, my goals, my race results (the good and not so … um, stellar), my pictures, and my life.  Sometimes I have wished for more time to spend writing and recapping races, but work and life can get in the way of this hobby.

The best part of blogging?  Meeting and talking with other bloggers!  I have been inspired by so many and am thankful for all the people who follow my blog, through Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram, and email.

I’m heading into 2014 with new training goals and I’d love to keep sharing my journey with you.

Do you have a favorite blog post of mine?  If so, what is it?  I can tell you from the audience stats, this blog had the most views:

Ironman Canada Race Report!

IM Canada medal

This one, I had the most fun writing ….

The Art of Snot Rockets

…. Oh, I can’t forget this little nugget …

New York City Marathon

Looking back over a year of blog posts as I was writing this blog put a smile on my face!  It’s like re-reading a journal, only better because it’s laced with photos and nice comments from my friends (YOU!).  So, with that … here’s to another great year friends!!

xo,

happyTRIgirl

Ironman Canada ~ Whister: Race Report

After 34 weeks of hard training, it was GO time.

alarm

The date:  August 25, 2013.

The place:  Whistler, BC.

It was the 31st anniversary of Subaru Ironman Canada, and the inaugural location of spectacular Whistler.

With the alarm set, I woke up after just a few short hours.  I was as ready as I could be.  Thankfully, I had slept well the night prior (Friday night), so having a shortage of sleep the night before the race was no biggie, in fact, I expected this.  I made my way downstairs and quietly made some coffee, a toasted bagel with peanut butter and had two small bananas.  I got dressed, pulled my bottles from the refrigerator and freezer and left around 4:30 am.  My friend Kari and I decided to meet to take the shuttle over to Rainbow Park, but as it turned out, we missed each other completely at our pre-arranged location.

I didn’t lose focus though and I told myself I would see her when I see her.  I added a hand-held water bottle to my run bag for T2 (transition 2:  the bike to run) and dropped off my special needs bags for the Bike and Run.  All I had left was my morning bag of dry clothes and wetsuit/swim gear.  I got on the bus from the T2 staging area and the driver shuttled a full bus of athletes to Rainbow park.  It was still dark out and the bus was quiet.  Everyone seemed to be focused.

The gentleman next to me tried to make small talk, but the only thing I really heard was that he chose the Whistler course over Challenge Penticton because he doesn’t like descending.  I asked him if he practiced the bike course and he said no.  Hopefully, my face didn’t give away my horror that he had not practiced this bike course.  It was hella hard and he had no idea what he was in for.  I was scared for him!  But, I remained cool and told him he would do well and I wished him a great day.  Secretly, I was so thankful I had the opportunity to practice this bike course two times leading up to the race.  Both times were very challenging and had me questioning what the hell I was doing.  In fact, the second time, I even questioned riding my TRI bike.  I pleaded with my coach to use my road bike for easier climbing gears.  He assured me (and he was right) that I should use my TRI bike.

I arrived at Rainbow park went straight to my bike.  First things first … I needed to pump my tires.  We were told that mechanics would be on hand with bike pumps in the morning, so I didn’t bother to bring mine.  I took my bike and found a long line of other athletes waiting to fill their tires as well.  So, I waited.  About 20 minutes in all.  When it was my turn, the bike mechanic filled my tires to 100 psi per my request.  He even complimented me on my nails … telling me I had the best race nails he has seen.  Why … thank you! 🙂  And, with that, I quickly made my way back to where my bike was to be racked.

(I just so happened to have snapped my friends my race ready nails before leaving for Whistler!)

nails

I filled my aero bottle and placed 3 more bottles on my bike.  I then started filling my GuChomps in my bento box when Kari found me.  She was ready to go.  Holy hell, she’s fast!  I still needed to use the bathroom and the line was horrendous!  Erg.  Why is this always the case?  I also needed to add some socks to my T1 bag (transition 1 – swim to bike).  I did that first, then got in line for the porto-potty.  I waited for what seemed like a long time, but really only took about 15 minutes.  Time to don the wetsuit.

T1 was buzzing with athletes ready to go.

t1 Rainbow park

Kari waited patiently for me as I got into my wetsuit and we made our way over and dropped off our morning bags.

This is it.

I’m doing this.

2.4 miles to start.

140.6 in total.

Today is Ironman time!

Deep breath.  The sun was rising and the clouds cast a haze and a beautiful fog over the water.  It was gorgeous.

alta lake

alta lake swim start

Swimming.  Oh, how I used to dread swimming!  I’m still not great at it, but I practiced swimming much more this year than I did for my previous Ironman.  I knew I was a little faster, so the first goal I set for myself was to do the 2.4 mile swim in under 1:45:00.  That seemed doable, given the fact that two years ago, I did a 1:53:00 something.  My coach had high hopes for a 1:35:00, but I seriously just wanted to get under 1:45:00.  So, there it was …

GOAL #1.  Swim a sub 1:45:00.

The pros started 7 minutes ahead of the age groupers and then it was go time … 7 am.

The course was a two loop swim, counter-clockwise, starting from the water.  Kari and I made our way in and took a few strokes to warm up and make sure our goggles were on right.  I knew I would lose her soon enough in the mass of 2600+ people.

IM Canada swim start

The gun blew and we were off.  I found my stroke and remained calm, even though I was surrounded by hundreds of people.  I kept telling myself to follow the bubbles, get on someones feet and follow them.  Conserve energy and breathe.  Half way through the first loop, some guy was breast stoking and kicked me right in the goggles.  OUCH!  Thankfully, they didn’t come off, they were just shoved deeper in my skull.  Thank you mister, now move outta my way!

mass swim start

The first loop went by in what seemed like no time and I was excited to start my second loop.  I was also very thankful the race directors didn’t make us exit the lake to run ashore and then back in again.  I looked briefly at my watch and noticed it was roughly 47 minutes.  Not fast, but not as slow as last time.  Push!  I wanted to make under 1:45:00.  I focused on my breathing, stroke, reaching, pulling, gliding.  The final stretch, I increased my arm cadence and gave myself a push.  I came out of the water at 1:43:25.  YES!

Goal #1 — accomplished!

swim alta lake exit

I ran up to the wetsuit strippers and was quickly stripped from my BlueSeventy.  Some nice volunteer handed me my swim to bike bag and into the ladies changing tent I went.  I sat and peeled off my compression sleeves.  I contemplated wearing them all day, but I really wanted the full compression sock.  Another nice volunteer assisted me in putting them on and then I was off to find my bike while she put everything away for me (my wetsuit/goggles/cap).  There weren’t many bikes left in transition, which meant one thing … I am still so freaking SLOW at swimming.

My buddy Dave, captured this shot and posted it to Instagram:

T1 exit Rainbow Park

Oh well, I made my goal.  I was smiling and happy to start my bike leg.  112 miles of the toughest riding I have EVER done.  Seriously.

coming out of T1

start of IM bike

leaving rainbow park on bike

I set off easy enough because I knew I would need to have a lot left in my tank to climb the final 20 miles back to Whistler.  The bike course was absolutely stunning and I really loved the fact that Ironman shut down most of the roads, especially the out and back to Pemberton, and it was smooth sailing.  The riding conditions were near perfect.

biking IM Canada

Out and back to Callaghan whizzed by and before I knew it, I was heading back to Whistler.  I knew I would see my family along the course and they caught me riding by!  With a huge smile on my face!

bike

bike IM

I was just over a 1/3 of the way done and I knew I would zip out to Pemberton, which was mostly downhill with one steep climb called Suicide hill on the way.  There is no climbing this hill in anything but the granny ring.  I made it to Pemberton in no time and it was nice the community of Pemberton was out there to cheer us on.  Afterall, Ironman had completely shut down the entire road from Pemberton to Whistler for this race, so they were kinda stuck for several hours.  The special needs station was a lot sooner than I anticipated and I completely went by my bag and stopped about 50 feet away.  No one could find my bag!  I kept yelling “626?” … no one could find it.  After a few minutes, some volunteer realized she had been holding it the entire time.  OOPS.  No biggie.  It’s not like I was going to win this thing.  I quickly grabbed some pretzels and took a swig of a 5 hour energy drink.  (OOPS — something I’ve never done! …. oh well).  I exchanged two of my bike bottles, since I was drinking a mix of OSMO and nothing else.  And, off I went.  Out and back in Pemberton was flat and fast.

bike leg IM Canada

guy got chicked on bike

I passed several people and spoke to a few along the way, asking them about their day.  A few were chatty back, which I love!  Rounding the corner in Pemberton to make my way back to Whistler, I knew I was in for some tough hills.  This was the final push I had been scared of for months.  I knew I would do it, but I was going to be in a pain cave for a bit.  I was not focused on my time, I was only focused on nailing my nutrition.

Goal #2:  Nail my nutrition!  (Because … well, most of you know what happened in IM 70.3 Boise …)

For the bike, this meant drinking at least one bottle of OSMO per hour.  I consumed 2 GuChomps on the 1/2 hour and 4 GuChomps on the full hour.  Once I hit 3 hours, I started eating some pretzels and I ate 1/2 of a Protein bar.  I carried on until all my GuChomps were gone!

The climb back to Whistler went better than expected.  My quads were a little sore, but that was to be expected.  I made conversation with a gal from Michigan and we endured the long climb back together.  Heading into Whistler, there were several turns and tons of spectators cheering as I came into T2.

Photo Credit: John Pratt
Photo Credit: John Pratt

I dismounted and began to move forward, but lost my balance and dropped my bike.  Thankfully, I didn’t go down with it, but I hated dropping my bike nonetheless.

coming into t2

I handed my bike off to the volunteers and ran to grab my T2 bag.  I had legs!! They were moving.  I ran into the changing tent and exchanged my bike shoes for my Brooks Launch running shoes.  Brand new … since I love running in new shoes!  It was go time.  I grabbed my hand-held water bottle with OSMO and I was off.

Whoa – wait — quick stop at the porto-potty.  Ok — now I’m off.

exiting t2

(My friend @trisilk caught this picture and video of me coming out of T2 and posted it to Instagram!! Thanks buddy!)

Ok, nice and easy I told myself.  Break it into 30 minute segments.  I’ve done this a million times off the bike.  I’m the queen of bricks.  I love bricks.  My stomach was queasy and my quads were sore, but I wasn’t cramping!  That was the good thing.  Keep moving forward I told myself … no matter how slow, keep moving.

runIM

I made 3 more porto-potty stops in the first 13.1 miles, thinking I had to pee, when in actuality, I could barely eek out anything.  It was my body yelling, “PSYCH!  GOTCHA!”  Damn … ok, let’s just do this.

IM Run

I kept a steady pace and played leap-frog with several runners on the course.  I’d walk for 30 sec to a minute per aid station, and run the rest.  I was doing my plan!!  I was running more than walking and I couldn’t have been more happy!!  My quads were on fire … FIRE!  But, hey, I just figured they were telling me that I had kicked ass on the bike course and they should be on fire.  So — keep going girl!

run course IM
I loved seeing my Momma!

smile IM run

And – I did.

With an enormous smile on my face.

I loved seeing my family out there and my friends, John and Judy.

run IM Whistler

I saw Kari on an out and back and she was behind me just a bit.  What the heck?  She had been ahead of me.  I later found out that she had a pit stop in T2 that was a bit longer than mine.  We played leap-frog a bit and it was great to see a familiar face.  Towards the end, I saw my buddy Glenn, and he ran with me for a bit, but urged me to carry on without him.

Rounding the final corner to Ironman run course, I saw the time.  I could see it was 12 hours and 53 minutes.  WHAT?!!!!  I hadn’t been paying attention to my overall time, just trying to nail my nutrition and take each leg for what I could do.

IM Canada finish

Goal #3:  complete Ironman Canada in under 14 hours! (My first IM was in 14:06:00).  Read about my IM Canada 2011 experience HERE.

finish medal IM Canada

Accomplished, tackled, nailed, smashed my PR by ONE HOUR and 12 minutes!!!  

Excited beyond belief!  

I PR’d in the swim, the bike and the run!  

Heck yeah!

IM Canada medal

Thank you Ironman Canada for a great race!  

This happyTRIgirl is over the moon!

Journey to 140.6 – the last 14 weeks

In less than a week — my second Ironman will be reality!

Am I nervous?  Hell ya!

Anxious?  Yup.

Scattered? … what was the question?

Am I capable?  Darn tuttin!

I know I have worked my butt off the last 14 weeks — thanks to my awesome coach, Daryl!  So much so, in fact, it has been nearly impossible to keep up with blogging!  Fourteen weeks went by in a hurry and although I made several attempts and drafts for my weekly training reports … well, they just stayed in draft form.  #sorryimnotsorry

In a nut shell — here is what I’ve accomplished the last 14 weeks:

125 hours and 5 minutes of swimming, biking, and running

1512 total miles of swimming, biking, and running. 

101 workouts

I’ve gotta say, after adding those totals … I was pretty pleased.  I’ve trained harder and smarter this year and I’ve been able to ride the Whistler course two times.  I feel prepared in my training and know that I won’t make any physical gains this last week.

Mental preparedness is now my calling.

“Swim to ride, ride to run, run to win,” says my coach.  Cheers to that!

IM run photo

 

IM 70.3 Boise Race Report

boise IM finish

With my race bag packed two days ahead of schedule, I was more than ready to take on IM 70.3 Boise.

5:30 am rolled around the Thursday before, and I said goodbye to the family and drove away.  This would be my first, and hopefully my last, LONG solo driving adventure.  I made six pit-stops along the way before arriving in Boise some 10 hours later.  My child-hood friend, Rae, had invited me to stay with her and her husband, Casey, for the long weekend.  Both being triathletes, and having done Boise in the past, Rae and Casey were a wealth of knowledge and inspiration.

Boise day-of-race, I was told, was a crap-shoot.  The weather often toyed between down-pour rain and freezing temperatures (2012) and soon-to-be, sweltering hot this year.  I was also told the bike course was always windy.  ALWAYS.  So, I’d better hold back on pushing too hard on the bike and save some energy for the run.

Rae chauffeured me around, which I loved because I didn’t have to figure out where to go, when to be there, etc.  We headed for packet pick-up Thursday night.  It was a seamless process and very well-organized with tons of volunteers.  It could have been that I also beat the rush of the crowd that were due to show up on Friday to check-in since race day was Saturday.  In any case, it was super cinchy and I was in and out in no time!  I was also able to add my local TRI team to the IM 70.3 Boise list, The Bellingham TRI Club, at the last-minute.

The expo was pretty non-existent, compared to other events I’ve been to, but what I really cared about was the IM 70.3 Boise gear!  I scored:: new Tri shorts, pint glass, water bottle, t-shirt, M-dot ornament, and cookie cutter.  Cheesy I know, but I like that stuff!

My highlight on Thursday, besides being in Boise for the first time, was meeting Alexander Ford and his family, and other FurtherFasterForever Tri Peeps who I have been following on Instagram.  We met down at a local brewery, called 10 Barrel.

f3 peeps

On Friday, I did a quick shake out bike and run and Rae joined me.  It was already so hot out!

ride/run shake out

We took my bike to check in at T1 at Lucky Peak Reservoir, where the swim was going to be.  Looking out at the water, the first thing I noticed was all the waves and choppiness from the wind.  Oh my.  A bit of panic set in.  I gulped.  Rae asked me if I wanted to get in.  Uh …. no thanks.  I think I’ll wait until tomorrow and wing it.  (and, PRAY that the wind dies down between now and race time).

Not so calm ...
Not so calm …

trek speed concept wsd

Friday night dinner was home-cooked spaghetti with french bread. YUMO! (thanks Rae!)  I prepared my race bags and made my hydration bottles.  On my down tube, I made a mixture of 3 scoops CarboPro with GUbrew electrolytes.  I froze this bottle and intended to sip from it every ten minutes on the bike until it was finished.  My aerobar bottle was water with GUbrew and I packed two more GUbrew electrolyte tabs for replacing the water at the aid stations on the bike course.  With one bottle in the freezer and the other in the refrigerator, I bid everyone goodnight.

Race morning, I slept in a bit.  After all, IM 70.3 Boise is a 12:00 start.  I don’t know any other 70.3 races that have a start time this late, and I’m not a fan.  With the heat of the day ahead, I would have much preferred a morning start time.

pre race breakfast

I had my pre-race breakfast, 1/2 plain bagel with a banana and a cup of coffee.  I can’t eat much before a race and I knew I had been carbo loading and eating and hydrating with electrolytes really well the past few days, so that didn’t worry me.  We left Rae’s house around 9:15 and headed to T2 to drop my run bag.  This race is a clean transition race, meaning EVERYTHING has to be in either the run or bike bag.  No footprint for a transition zone whatsoever at either T1 or T2.  Just your bag.  In fact, the T1 bag had to be hanging from the bikes.  Nothing on the ground.

me and alexander

I met up with Alexander and Rae gave him a ride to Lucky Peak swim start too.  We parked and hiked about 20 minutes to get to the start.  I had to set up my bike bottles and get my tires pumped.  No transition zone to set up, so I just hung my bike bag from my handlebars.

Then the wait for my swim wave.  I was in WAVE 5, which was set for 12:15.  I was relatively calm considering the water was a choppy mess.  This would be my rockiest swim EVER.  And, if you have been following my blog or know me, you know how thrilled I was with this. :/  Nonetheless, it was GO TIME.  Time to conquer this swim.  Goal #1 was a 45 minute swim.  Given that the water was so choppy and everyone was rocking, I told myself I would be happy to finish under an hour.

Deep Water Start
Deep Water Start

The horn blew, and just like that … I was off.  The swim felt remarkably solid for being thrown around like a lonely towel in a washing machine.  I didn’t dare stop for the one time I did, I ended up with a load of water right in my face.  Forge on.  I swam to the outside left, way away from everyone or anyone coming up behind me.  And they came in droves.  I didn’t care if I swam an extra 1/4 mile, just so no one swam over me or kicked me.  I was swimming for what seemed like forever, but all the while, I was very comfortable.  YAY for some progress!  I came out of the swim feeling like a million bucks and prepared to rock the bike course.  Wet suit strippers at the top of the hill skinned this rabbit and I was off to find my bike bag.

swim
I’m on the far left

Slow transitions seem to be my specialty and I need to find another gear to speed up my transition zones.  I dried my feet, put body glide on them, socks, then bike shoes.  Glasses, then helmet and oh yeah …. wetsuit and goggles/cap in the bag cinched up.  Away I went.

The air was warm and dry and I quickly warmed up after the chilly 60 degree swim.  My feet, which are typically frozen for quite some time, liked the ‘warmness’ of the air.  A quick descent right out of T1 and I was on my way.  EASY I told myself.  Hold back.

HOLY WIND …. okay, then …. this makes it easy to hold back.  Sideways, pushing, almost loosing control of my bike a couple of times type side wind.  Headwind on descents made it hard for the so-called easy recoveries.  So, I kicked it down to easy gears and just remembered my quick cadence.  I took a Peanut Butter Gu at 30 minutes in and again at 1:30 and a Roctane GU at 2:30.  I used CarboPro with electrolytes every 10 minutes.  I used salt tablets 3 times on the bike and I consumed water with electrolytes from my aerobar bottle.  I’ve got this.  The miles clicked by and I was passing people in my age group left and right.  How can this be?  I was riding super easy, not pushing it at all.  OH YEAH … I was so looking forward to killing it on the run!

bike
photo credit to: finisherpix.com

The miles seemed effortless on the bike and before I knew it, I was finished!  This time really sped by for me.  The course itself was really nondescript and not the prettiest of courses I’ve ridden, but I didn’t mind it.  A couple of hills, but nothing to write home about either.  The only real killer was the wind and one technical trail – single track – with no passing.  It was downhill at first and I wasn’t prepared to quickly go uphill and I was in my biggest ring.  OUCH!  I had to suffer the mash-fest to get up the hill because I didn’t want to drop my chain or get chain suck from shifting.

bike front
photo credit to: finisherpix.com

Hwy 21 was most remarkable on the bike and a guy standing on the corner made me laugh.  He was holding a big yellow sign that read, “GO RANDOM STRANGER!”  His friend was holding a sign that read, ‘THIS IS A MOTIVATIONAL SIGN.”  For whatever reason, this made me LOL.

Coming into T2 – I knew I was prepared to run.  This was my speciality and I had been practicing bricks for the past 22 weeks.  This run was mine for the taking.  Settle in, steady pace … break it into thirds and race the last third.  I’ve got this.

I quickly racked my bike, changed my shoes, grabbed my hat and race belt and I was off.  One quick stop at the porto-potty.  I tried to pee on the bike, but I just couldn’t do it.  Literally, I couldn’t make myself go.  I tried.  And tried.  And tried.  Seriously.  Couldn’t make it happen.  So, into the porto-potty I go, but I really didn’t have to go … so maybe that was my problem.

The run …

….. oh, this run.

I am a runner.  I’ve got this …

GO

Four minutes in …

UGH, pain tightening in my left quad.  Pain so bad I know I needed to stretch the sucker out.  I moved out of the path and started to lift my left heel to my hand for a good ‘ol quad stretch …

ARRRRGGGHHHHHH!  Charlie horse in my hamstring … opposite side.  F%&* S($# (many expletives I can’t remember here).

I am bent over in excruciating pain.  Unable to move.  After a couple of minutes bent at the waist massaging my leg, I try to walk.  And … I’m limping.  It hurts.  Tears start flowing out my eyes.  I look at my watch and know I will have to walk this 13.1 miles or a majority of it and my goal of sub 6 just went out the window.  I cry harder.

Wiping my tears under my glasses, I continue walking as other athletes are running by me.  It’s such a pretty run course, on a paved trail next to water and trees.  I want to run so bad.  What the heck??  I fueled just right, didn’t I?  I hit mile one in 10 minutes.  Geesh.  This is going to take forever.  First aid station, I down some water and get some ice.  I chew on the ice and the rest goes in my shirt and down my shorts to cool me off.  It was the hottest part of the day and now I was grumpy. Cranky grump.  But, I continued to talk to people and walk with others when I could.  I stopped at every aid station and kept drinking, only now I started drinking coca-cola.  OH, this is good.  I jogged a little, but mostly walked.

run

After a couple of miles, I felt a raw type pain on the back of my left ankle.  What the heck?  I look down and it’s rubbed raw.  UGH.  I stop, pull up my sock over it and carry on. At the next aid station, I get a bandaid for both ankles because it’s rubbing raw on both ankles.  I’ve never had this problem before.  EVER.  I stop again at the next aid station because my first bandaids came off.  That’s when I realize …

hey dumbshit …. you forgot to cinch up your laces.  How could I have forgotten that?  Now I’m angry with myself and tell my ankles to just go ahead and bleed.  I deserve it.  Dummy.

Oh — and for pain’s stake … what’s one more bandaid change?  They’ve come off again and I can’t seem to go any slower anyhow, so I take my time changing them out for the third time.  Swell.

hugging rae

I was just finishing the first loop of the run course when I found Rae and Casey.  I hugged Rae tight and told her what happened and I started crying again.  She gave me a pep talk, but in my moment of delirium, I really don’t know what she said, but I kept moving.  Casey told me to stop with the cola and switch to water.  Good call … I listened.  I started to jog slightly more the second loop and finished with a new PW.  Personal Worst.

Nonetheless, I finished.

And, I finished smiling.

run finish
photo credit to: finisherpix.com

I went straight to medical and told them how bad I was cramping.  Hoping they would give me an IV of fluids to make me feel better, they gave me chicken broth.  In my non-sensical rationale, I told them I had been consuming electrolytes all along and had no idea why I was cramping.

Casey and Rae took care of getting my bike and all my gear bags and helped me to the car.  I took one picture with Alexander, who was waiting at the finish.

finish photo

As I was taking this picture, I just felt sick.  Nauseous.  No sooner did they get me home, and I was throwing up the lame chicken broth.  Oh yuckiness.  I hate throwing up.  I can’t remember the last time that even happened.  Never in a race or after a race.  I still had no idea what was happening.

I didn’t seem to come to my senses until after Rae and Casey fed me dinner at 9 pm that night.  I felt much better, even though I really didn’t want to eat and my throat hurt from throwing up.  I drank a ton of water all through the night and woke up just devastated.  What the heck happened?  I ran through everything in my mind again how I had awesome swim and an awesome bike … what the heck?!

My bike …

I went out to my bike in the garage and pulled my water bottle from the down tube.  It was half full (or half empty at this point in the game).  SHIT.  I thought I had consumed almost all of it.  After all, I was drinking from it every 10 minutes.  I ran inside and asked Casey if he had dumped my aerobar bottle.

Yes.  

How much fluid was still in it?

About half.

CRAPOLA!  Then I replayed the aid stations I went through.  Only two had I grabbed a bottle of water.  I poured half over my head and emptied the rest into my aero bottle before pitching it inside the trash zone.  I knew I had to consume AT LEAST 3 full bottles while on the bike, probably 4 with the heat.  I consumed maybe 1 to 1 1/2 bottles max.

SIGH.  THAT WAS IT. CASE SOLVED.

Time to regroup.

Time to recharge.

I have IM CANADA in 12 weeks and I need serious practice at hydration and fueling.  Obviously.

Lesson learned – but it doesn’t make it any easier in the moment.  I am so glad I finished and I never once thought I wouldn’t – it’s just not in me to quit.  I am most thankful for all the support from my friends and family over Facebook, Twitter and IG.  Thank you!  Truly.

As Casey told me — Boise is DEAD to you.  LOL!  I love this.  I may have to resurrect it next year.

boise medal

Three Things Thursday

Better late than never, here are my three things for this Thursday:

 

1.  I had my first Open Water Swim (OWS) this week!  I had put it off as long as possible and so … it was time.  I am so used to the 80 degree pool at Bellingham Athletic Club, that the 60 degree water of Lake Padden was a bit shocking to my system.  I must make myself get in a few more times before next Saturday.

First OWS

2.  My favorite day at work was yesterday!  It was the Law Enforcement Torch Run for the Special Olympics of Washington.  I run a leg or two of it every year during my work day and I am so thankful I have great bosses who let me take some time to participate in something I love.  Yesterday, I ended up with just about 5.7 miles.  I ran the first leg solo and then picked up my buddy and co-worker, Kyle, for the remaining miles.

Law Enforcement Torch Run

3.  In less than a week now, I will be in Boise, ID!  Race day is Saturday, June 8th. I’m praying for nice weather.

photo

Journey to 140.6 – Week 19


Week 19 to Ironman Canada

week 19

This week was a bust.

And, I was a dud.

Anyone looking at my training for the week might think I had been sick or something.  Nope. Not the case at all.  I was actually at a work conference in Shelton and had taken all my gear to work out!  I even brought my bike and trainer.  The hotel had a pool.  I had no great excuse, other than I didn’t want to miss dinner, which seemed to be an hour after our last class.  So, training was pretty much non-existent.  A mere five hours was all I could conjure up.  Needless to say, I have been cranky with myself and disappointed to lose valuable time.

My coach, Daryl, is ever understanding and accommodating to my crazy work schedule.

Monday, May 6th – SWIM – 

Monday Swim

I started out the day with a raging headache and kink in my neck from sleeping wrong.  I thought a swim might work it out.  Nope.  Not at all.  I gave it a good 30 minutes before calling it.  Disappointed … I left after only completing 1000 yards.  Poo.

Tuesday, May 7th thru Friday, May 10th

Bust!  Bust!  Bust!  I squeaked in 20 minutes of the bike trainer on Wednesday morning, but seriously, this was not enough to even count towards my weekly mileage or time.  Suck.  Major suck.

Saturday, May 11th – RUN & SWIM

brooks pure drift

Since I missed my long run this week, I decided to go run for an hour prior to meeting the TRI group I coach.  This was fabulous as I missed running in the worst way and couldn’t wait to get out there.  I broke out my new Brooks Pure Drifts for the trails around Lake Padden and they were awesome.  I then ran with the TRI group and coached them on running the backside hills.  What a great group of athletes!

athletes I coach

Sunday, May 12th – LONG BIKE –

Mother’s Day!  I spent the day cleaning and catching up on chores.  I didn’t actually get on my bike until around 4:30 pm.  My plan called for 3.5 hours on the bike and a 30 min run.  I completed 2.5 hours on my trainer and called it good.  After all, it was Mother’s Day and the Survivor finale was on.  Plus, I was starving.

bike

So, here’s to a better next week and being back on track.

 ***

Overall Training Hours completed for Week Nineteen: 4 hours and 59 minutes (ACK!)

not enough miles of running

not enough miles of biking 

not enough miles of swimming

 

Journey to 140.6 – Weeks 16, 17, & 18

Well, well, well.  Where have I been?  Obviously not blogging much.  After my last twofer, (blog post for 14 and 15 training weeks), I thought I would have learned my lesson.  I almost had my week 16 post done and ready, but there it sat, in draft form, untouched and waiting for pictures.  Until tonight.  Now I’m trying to catch up on the last THREE weeks.  Geez.

Where has the time gone?  I just don’t know …. it’s … Poof — gone!  Good news is my training is in the books.  More good news is that I have two more races under my belt.  

More training to come, so … Onward!

Here is what my last three weeks looked like.  This will be a very condensed version as bed time is calling (well, weeks 17 and 18 are condensed).  I know you all understand (especially if you are a blogger and this is not your full-time job).


Week 16 to Ironman Canada

week 16 screen shot

Listed below are my workouts from my awesome coach, Daryl.

Monday, April 15th – SWIM – 

30:00 – 200 wu; 2 x 500s with second set faster than the first.  In between 500s – 4 x 50s easy.  2 x 100 cool down.

 (Took me 37 minutes to go 1600 yards tonight.  200 wu- 4:14 — 1st 500 – 10:49 — 4x50s: 1:07, 1:03, 1:05, 1:00 — 2nd 500 – 10:26 2×100 cool down

Tuesday, April 16th – RUN am/BIKE pm –

30:00 – 30min build easy to steady.

1:30:00 – 15min WU, then 3x3min hard on 3min recoveries, then steady riding.

(30 min AM run.  Legs were tired and heavy.  3.6 miles total for an average pace of 8:20.  Evening ride – Didn’t make 90 min. Sun started to go down and I was cramping in my calf. Ouch. Happy with 3 x 3 min efforts and overall pace as I rode 20 miles in 1:08:42.

Wednesday, April 17th – BIKE –

1:30:00 – 10min easy, then push strong steady effort using 9min on, 1min recovery pattern, 5min CD.

(To make up for missing training time last night, I went longer on my trainer this morning.  Completed 10 x 9 minute intervals.  Total time: 1:52:00.

Thursday, April 18th – REST –

30 min run was optional and I decided to rest. 😉

(Travel day to San Diego!  4 am wake-up call and out the door by about 5 am and headed to the airport.  Bellingham to Seattle to Portland to SD.  I arrived to find sunny weather.  Yahoooo!  Hellooooo SUN!)

Friday, April 19th – SWIM –

45:00 – 2×200 WU, 6×200 at CSS pace with 20sec recovery, 2×200 CD.

san diego university pool

(Got to swim in an amazing outdoor pool in San Diego!! Univ of SD!!! Best pool I’ve ever been in. wu: 4:25, 4:21 3:59 4:02 4:02 4:04 4:07 1:56 1:57 did not have time for cool down. Worked on lengthening stride last CSS – so broke it up into 100’s …. think it helped.)

Saturday, April 20th – LONG RUN

1:15:00 – 40min easy/steady, then 5, 4, 3min at HM to 10k effort on equal recoveries.

San Diego

San diego run

(Awesome outdoor run in San Diego. Happy to get this pace with the warm weather and no fuel or water on board. Felt awesome!! Had great intervals at about 7:30 pace or so.  8.8 miles total in 1:13:36 for an average pace of 8:22.)

Sunday, April 21st – BIKE/RUN –

1:00:00 – Spin bike if available. 20min easy, then 5, 4, 3, 2, 1min building mod hard to hard across the set. Equal recoveries. CD.

15:00 – 15min easy run off the bike, if time allows.

run san diego

(If I’m being honest … I didn’t look too hard for a spin bike.  I laced up my shoes and hit the pavement, along the waterfront of San Diego again.  Decided to just take it easy and enjoy the scenery.  I finished 8 miles in an hour, way faster than I intended, but I wasn’t paying attention to pace, just how I felt.  Happy to be running an average 7:45 pace, which felt easier than yesterday’s run.  Woot!!  I finished this session off with 15 minutes of stairs.  The convention center in San Diego has some wicked fun stairs and I decided to work on my quad strength since I haven’t been on my bike in what feels like forever now — okay, Wednesday … but still.  112 stairs up, 100 down on the other side.  Up and over four times.  OUCH fest … it hurt so good.  Did just over a mile of stairs!) 

 ***

Week 17 to Ironman Canada

week 17

Monday:  Play day in San Diego!  I did some major walking!!  And, playing on the beach!

Tuesday:  Last day in San Diego.  Did an easy four miles along the water front.

Wednesday:  TRI group ride.  A little over 16 miles in one hour.

Thursday:  Rest day.

Friday:  30 min run and 30 min swim.

Saturday:  Easy run with TRI group.

Sunday:  Mt Rainier Duathlon!!  Long Course:  5.12 mile run, 28.88 mile bike, 3.79 mile run — Despite the awful weather, this was a great race!  I set out to race smart and complete my second run faster than my first run.  Mission accomplished.  Total time was 2:48:57.  Race report (I know I keep saying this ….) will be forthcoming.

Pictures for the week:

Last run in San Diego
Last run in San Diego
Ran some stairs in San Diego!
Ran some stairs in San Diego!
Biking with the TRI group
Biking with the TRI group
Mt Rainier Duathlon
Mt Rainier Duathlon

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Week 18 to Ironman Canada

week 18

Monday: 30 min swim

Tuesday: rest day

Wednesday: Tri group ride and run

Thursday: 60 min run.  Ran with Amy, who is in our TRI group.  She has a great pace and great attitude.  I just love chatting with her.  We ended up with 7.3 miles in an hour.

Friday: easy 60 min spin

Saturday: Haggen to Haggen 5K.  A PR for me!!  I was trying to break 22 minutes and ended up with 20:49.  Thrilled beyond belief!!  Thanks to my friend, Meghan, for pacing me the entire way.  I didn’t wear a watch and just went for it.

Sunday: Long Bike (3 hours) and Long Run to follow (1 hour).  Bike had 4 x 8 minute intervals within the first and third hours.  Overall, felt good with the bike.  It was a beautiful day!!  Then came the run.  Sufferfest!!  It was so hot outside and my legs were sluggish and heavy.  They barely listened to me telling them to get a move on.  I’m sure people were laughing as I was yelling at them to get going.  I endured and ended up going 7.1 miles in the hour.  Pretty happy with an 8:30 pace given I just raced the day before and rode over 55 miles right before.

Picture of the week:

Haggen to Haggen 5K
Haggen to Haggen 5K