Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Better? Maybe? Not.

I still haven’t gotten a new battery for the bike computer on my road bike.  (Which reminds me, I need to see if I can fix the one on my tri bike, it kind of…came apart…)  I keep forgetting…which means I don’t actually know my speed or anything, real-time.  Lately, this has been a “good” thing, since I know it’s more important to do what my body is happy with, rather than get frustrated and risk hurting myself more by trying to go faster.

Of course, yesterday I was feeling pretty good.  In fact, I felt pretty great for almost the whole time.  My neck wasn’t really bothering me too much, and my legs were finally feeling like they had some life to them.  Allen and I decided to do the 520 trail, which was a nice change of scenery (and I got to take him on it for the first time hehe).  I also hadn’t done that hill in almost a year, and I honestly felt great.  Granted, it’s been so long I can’t exactly remember how it felt the last time I did it, but I was going along thing “gee, I’m sure this is way faster than the last time I did it!  That’s good, at least I’m stronger than I was last year!”

Yeah yeah yeah, famous last words.  According to strava, it was a 3rd best time.  Ugh.  Not like I was pushing it, but..blehhh.  Kind of disappointing, after convincing myself I had probably shaved at least a minute off of my last fastest time, that's how good I felt....  Oh well.  I know it’s not a big deal.  But still.  :-P

Overall though, it was a good ride.  Even if I’m still a slowpoke, I guess it should just be humbling ;) And at least I felt a lot better.  Bright side!

Then I swam this morning.  I hate swimming.  I hate not knowing how I’m doing, whether it’s form or speed or what.  I just feel like I’m splashing along in the water like a cat.  I don’t know, it’s just hard to tell what benefit there is when I feel lost in the water no matter what.

In skin news, this sunburn sucks.  It’s like flakey scabby grossness, on top of already discolored, unhappy new skin.  On the one hand, I know that scars are not the end of the world, and it’s not like I’m vain enough to actually really care or think anyone else will care either… but it’s still kinda disconcerting to think that I could have giant, splotchy patches of scarred skin all over my shoulder/back…  :(  Only time will tell, and it’s too late to do anything about it now so I’m trying to not think about it too much.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Swim, swim, swim!

Yes, swimming.  Yuck, but also yay!  I was happy to get back to the pool today, because it meant my routine was getting back to “normal.”  Even went to the lake yesterday, and as much as it sucked to carefully pull on the wetsuit…it was “good” to be out there again.  I was happy to notice that I didn't deteriorate quite as badly as I had feared, and I kind of felt like I remembered what to do!  I was so worried.  I'm still the slowest swimmer on the planet (I guess when you're that slow, it's hard to slow down even more), but it could have been worse.

The skin is healing very well—I was just a dummy, and managed to sunburn my new skin!  My shoulder is now bright red.  Aside from the fact that now I’ll probably be all scarred for a while, it just plain hurts!  Swimming hurt, just because I could feel the poor skin breaking every time I took a stroke.  Oh well, not much I can do about that (other than obsessively slather every ointment known to man on it).

I also got to bike and run this weekend—both “short” considering they were “long” days, but honestly it was fine.  I am feeling much better on the bike, and a little better running.  My biggest problem on the bike is going to be mental, I know.  Every slight decline is terrifying.  Oh well.  I am also working on getting a chiropractor scheduled this week (need to call again), since my neck still hurts and keeps making weird popping noises.  That plus a massage will hopefully sort out my back, so that I can really get back to running better.

Patience, Rosanne…

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

A rainy day and a gloomy mood

Going for a ride last night was good.  Being with friends was good.  Overall though, it was NOT a particularly enjoyable ride.

I mean, it was ok.  I was alright for a while.  But as soon as there was a slight downhill, I had to coast down (no fast descents for this girl yet, every bump was terrifying enough), which means I was way behind—and I just didn’t have it in me to catch up.  Plus, my shoulders and neck started aching by the end and while it wasn’t exactly a lot of pain, it was enough that I was overall uncomfortable and not willing to push anything at all. Which is fine, I know, just exceedingly frustrating to get dropped wayyyy off the back, regardless of the circumstances.

Plus, now my back hurts more today.  I need a massage.  But I need more skin on my back, first.  It’s way too raw and delicate right now.  Whine, whine, whine.

On top of that, I just looked at the calendar—nationals is in 17 days.  That’s really soon.  I still can’t get in the pool (much less a wetsuit and lake), and I desperately need all the swim practice I can get.  So not only am I missing out on 2 weeks worth of improvement (assuming I can swim again next week), but I am positive I’m going backwards, and will just have to see how terribly slow I am once I can start.

Running and biking is also terribly slow, although I am really hoping that as soon as my back stops hurting, I can bounce back.  But then the question is—when will my back be better?  I am quickly running out of time.  It's not like I will miraculously go back to how I was, overnight.

I never thought I would do particularly well in Milwaukee, but I would have liked to actually race to the best of my ability and feel strong...not to the best of my ability in a painful, just-starting-to-move-again state.  How worth it is it to spend all the time and money to go, if it’ll suck?  Ugh.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Running and back pain

So I ended up running yesterday, instead of biking.  Since my workouts are already a little “off” without the swimming, I figured I may as well swap running and biking days this week.  Allen wanted to go to REI for mountain bike shoes/pedals (yayyy, finally converting him!), and running takes less time.

My back is pretty angry at me for running.  As soon as I started, the lower/side muscles started screaming.  I figured they just needed to loosen up… yeah, I think they loosened up about 50 minutes in to my 60 minute run...and even then, they were not too happy.

On the plus side, my legs and heart were soo happy to be running!  I could feel my legs working, going up a hill, and it felt so amazing to be using them again. 

A nice lady ran past me, smiling, wearing a “Run Happy” shirt.  I glared.  I was definitely NOT running happy.  But I kept reminding myself how happy I am to be alive, and that some back pain meant that I was feeling something which is a lot better than…the alternative.  So that helped.  I was ridiculously slow, really limited by how much impact my back could take (I tried speeding up and it just hurt more, so didn’t push it) but I focused on moving, rather than caring about my speed.  As long as things keep getting better, I’m happy.

18 days until Milwaukee, and counting.  I am stressing myself out thinking about it.  I need to swim!!!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Getting back to normal...

A whole lot of healing has taken place in the last few days!  I went to bed Friday night and woke up Saturday morning with a ton of new skin :) So that was great.

Saturday, I went for a short run.  I stayed in my neighborhood, since I wanted to stay close to the house just in case I needed to stop unexpectedly, and I really had no expectations.  I just wanted to run.  It was super slow (start around 9:00 and ended closer to 9:30)..but at least it was running.  For the most part.  The good news is that the road rash didn’t bother me; I could feel it a little, but it really wasn’t an issue.  The problem was my back!  I don’t know if it’s a delayed onset, or if I really didn’t notice it at all because I was too distracted with my lack of skin, but man..my back/neck/shoulders all hurt like crazy.  Running didn’t help, my lower back kept seizing up, so I just tried to keep it easy and natural.

Still, though, 30 minutes running outside was great for me, mentally!  I also got on the trainer for a few minutes, just to see how it felt—I wasn’t sure if the position would hurt my back, or if the road rash on my leg would be aggravated by pedaling.  I was happy to find that, at least for a few minutes, nothing stood out and things seemed to feel pretty good.

The other awesome part about Saturday was...new (bike) shoes!  My shoes were not only super scuffed up from the crash, but the left clip got complete smashed in, so it actually isn’t functional anymore.  I had to wiggle and squeeze my foot out of my shoe after I crashed, and there was no way I could use that shoe any more.  I had already been planning on getting some tri shoes, but now I needed new shoes ASAP!  I was looking around, and luckily Kyle found a pair of shoes that were exactly my size!  :)  Talk about perfect (I mean, all things considered).  So, I was able to get some really awesome shoes right away and not deal with ordering them, etc.  Sooo lucky.

Naturally, on Sunday, I had to go out and test the shoes!  I also just wanted to be on a bike.  I got Megan and Allen to go with me, and to keep it nice and easy…things seemed fine for a few minutes on the trainer, but I wasn’t sure how it would be for an actual ride.  We stayed on the trail (even though I really, really wanted to keep going once I started), and tried to keep an easy, high cadence.  I did push and get a couple hard efforts in for a minute or two at my favorite spot, which felt great.  Overall, the road rash is fine!  Itchy, but didn’t really affect the biking.  My back was sore, but as long as I was just taking it easy, it’s fine.  I did get out of the saddle a couple of times and tried to kick it up, and that’s when I really noticed my back (couldn’t accelerate too well) but that’s fine.  My legs were stiff and sore, and not exactly in top form, but I can live with that.  Mostly, I’m happy because I think I can at least try to return to my normal training schedule this week (minus the swims for a couple more days).  I know I won’t be fast (especially running) and I won’t push it, but I will at least feel better getting some time and miles in.

And just to be clear: the shoes are amazing.  I am 100% in love with them!  They are ridiculously light compared to my old shimanos, which was obvious as soon as I was carrying both of them to swap the cleats.  Even with the cleats on, they are lighter than the old shoes (without cleats).  I hadn’t really thought about how that would feel on the bike, but as soon as I clipped in and pedaled—wow, my feet were light as air!  What a huge difference.  I had no idea.  And they are so stiff, and comfortable, and and and…I love them.  :) 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Growing Skin

I’m getting antsy!  All the road rash is healing up nicely, and it’s crazy to see the new skin growing in!  I’m still covered in tegaderm, but at least I’m not leaking anymore ;)

For the most part, I have entered the itchy phase, I think.  Driving..me..crazy..

Unfortunately, I still have some areas that are painful, and just walking does hurt.  I can’t really imagine pedaling, or running just yet, which is frustrating because the rest of my body feels relatively “fine” enough to at least start doing some light exercise.  But the painful spots are actually painful and I don’t think it’s worth it.  I had really hoped I would be back to normal (and even swimming) on Monday, but I’m not so sure that will happen now.  Maybe if I’m lucky I can do some light spinning.  Or slow jogging.  For a short time.  :-\

Looking at my training schedule is actually depressing.  A whole week of NOTHING, when I should be getting some good distance in.  I know my bike and run is ok, I mean…I won’t be improving and I won’t be getting faster but at least I know I can do the distance.  But taking the time off of swimming is not good.  :(  As much as I dislike swimming, I know I need to keep at it if I want to improve..and that it is the one area where I really NEED to improve.  A lot.  So not only am I losing time to improve, I’m losing time to maintain at all.

Do I even want to go to Nationals if I’m going to be so slow in the water?  Not that I think I’ll be fast by in any means, in any leg, but at least the bike and run should be decent enough that I won’t look too stupid.  But at this rate, I’ll be the last out of the water.

It’s probably too early to be worrying about this.  I need to heal first.  Hmph.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Road Rash Sucks: How Rosanne Met the Pavement

Sunday morning, the day after the crash.  Gross!  This isn't even all of it, just some of the worst parts...

Well, last weekend was sure..eventful.
I had a 60 mile training ride on the schedule.  Got going in the morning, looking forward to finishing up and spending the rest of the day in Redmond watching Crit racing at Derby Days and Juniors/Masters State Championship Track racing.
I’ll be honest, it was a great ride.  I had some guy give me some great encouragement on East Lake Sammamish (telling me I “hold my speed really well” and that it took him a long time to catch me, etc).  Some good climbs, not too worried about pushing it but feeling strong.  30 miles in, I turned around at the top of Duthie Hill Road, and figured that there was more space for a break at the bottom of the hill.  “I’ll just go down the hill and then text Allen I’m halfway, have a gu, and head home.”
So I sped downhill.  The bike lane is pretty non-existent on the way down, but the curves and speed of the road make it natural to ride in the road anyway.  I was looking far ahead, planning my line around the bends in the road, and feeling good.  I remember seeing one sign that said “Welcome to King County” and thinking “oh, I didn’t realize there was a county line here.   Weird.”
I noticed another sign said the speed limit was 35mph, so I looked down and saw my speed was in the 35-40mph range.  “Good,” I thought.  “It’s fine that I’m in the road because I’m going the speed limit anyway, so I won’t be in the way of any cars.”  In fact, I made sure to keep my speed up, so that I wouldn't hold anyone up; even shifted up and put it in the big gear for the first time ever going downhill, so that I could pedal and keep my speed up there.  Lalala, not a care in the world.  I was a little thirsty, so made a mental note to be sure to drink plenty of water at the bottom of the hill.
Remember how I was looking far ahead?  Yeah, that means that when there’s cracks in the road that run perpendicular to your path, you really can’t see them.  I sure felt it, though.  A sudden, jamming bump (I thought I hit a pothole), and I felt my rear wheel kick up.  That bike is super stiff, and I definitely felt the shock ricocheting though the frame.  I skidded sideways on my front tire, thinking I could save it and be fine, but no—the rear wheel eventually flipped up, and I went flying over and around and slid to a stop.
Mid-slide, I had a flashback to mountain biking.  I was sliding down the road, I could feel my skin scraping off, and all I could think of was that this is a lot more like mountain biking.  I could see the trails in my mind, and felt like I was on the Kona.  Except on the mountain bike, the dirt feels a lot softer, and you can roll down a hill.  This time, I was sliding down pavement, wearing nothing but a tri top.
I came to a stop.  I tried to figure out what was happening.  Did I really just crash on the road?!  Seriously?!  No....  There was a car behind me (I am so, SO thankful that the driver was giving me ample space on the descent AND that he was alert and able to stop behind me in time), and the driver came running out.  He was obviously horrified, and really worried about me.  I realized my right foot was still clipped in (I was laying on my left, with my bike still between my legs), so I got unclipped and managed to stand up.  The driver helped gather my bike, all while asking if I was ok, and if I needed an ambulance.
Adrenaline rushing, I had no idea what had happened or how I felt.  I knew I was beaten up and out of breath, and noticed my elbow was bleeding.  "Must have gotten my elbow scraped up, oh well" I thought.  I leaned up against the barrier on the side of the road, and insisted (repeatedly) that I just needed to take a break and catch my breath.
“Are you…sure?  I mean, really, you look really..like..oh gosh, no, you really need help.”
There were passengers in the car, and they were out by then, also trying to help make sure I was ok.  Many offers to call 911, but I kept saying no, I’m ok, I just need to catch my breath.  I think I told one lady to “please, just wait a minute before you call, I think I’m ok.”  I know they were concerned and wanted to help, but at that moment, I needed to just take a minute to collect myself and not think about anything else or ambulances or anything.  I needed to get myself figured out.
Just a couple minutes after I fell, a police car was driving up the hill the other direction.  The driver of the car flagged down the officer, who obviously stopped and asked what had happened.  She took over, and let the other guy go, as well as directed traffic since I was starting to cause a back-up.
Meanwhile, I tried to collect myself.  I found my waterbottle and saddlebag, as well as my speed sensor that had come off my wheel.  I did a lot focusing on breathing, since I felt so out of breath.  Once traffic was flowing, the officer came to check on me, and said she was calling an aid car whether I wanted it or not.
I knew I needed to contact Allen, but didn’t really know what to say.  I texted him to call me, and left a message with him, briefly explaining I had crashed, and that I was banged up but OK, and told him to call me.
The aid car came, and they loaded me up and moved just a bit further down the road so that we weren’t blocking any more traffic.  A couple more police cars showed up, along with the firetruck that always accompanies the aid car; I think I talked about being embarrassed that I was causing such a big scene, with so many cars and trucks and flashing lights everywhere; I mean, I was just a little biker who had a small tumble, no need for all this!  The firemen gathered my bike and I think even loaded it into their truck, assuring me they could take the bike to their station to keep it safe if I wanted.  Overall, I had a lot of people coming in to tell me my bike was looking ok, aside from a rear flat. :)  I was happy they understood that that was the important thing I was most concerned about, since I myself felt relatively ok and just sore.
The medics looked me over, checking my spine, neck, pelvis, ribs, feet, collarbone (I told them I knew what that felt like, and that it wasn’t broken), lungs, head, and everything else.  They took my pulse and measured the O2 in my bloodstream… “98% and 62bpm…yup, you’re a cyclist!”
After checking for a concussion (I did hit my head, but my helmet definitely did its job!), they wrapped up my arm which was still bleeding a ton.  Unfortunately, the other major areas didn’t lend themselves to wrapping (shoulder/back and upper thigh), so they let them be.  They told me that they always err on the side of caution, and that they would like to take me to the hospital just in case, but that it was my choice.  I said no.  I made sure there wasn’t anything in particular they were concerned about and would have the hospital check, but they said it would be just “in case” something started to go wrong; I took my chances and figured it I started feeling terrible all of a sudden, I would go to the hospital.
One of the police said he would stay with me there, as Allen was on his way to come get me.  He offered to take me to the station to wait, but that was out in Fall City even further, and I had already told Allen where I was and just wanted to keep things easy.  So I was let out of the aid car, thanked everyone profusely for all their help, and sat on the side of the road with my bike.
Plenty of cyclists passed me, heading up the hill: some would turn and stare at me, since I was bloodied up with ripped up clothes, and a police escort; some would very pointedly ignore me and not look at me at all; one asked if I was ok.  I kind of laughed, and said “yeah, I’m fine..” and when he kept looking at me in disbelief, I added “just be carefully coming down hill” he nodded solemnly, and kept going.
I sat and waited.  I stood and waited.  Sitting down meant getting dead grass stuck in my open wounds, but standing up meant my back muscles would seize up.  Everything was starting to hurt, but from what I could tell, it was just muscular soreness from coming to an abrupt stop on pavement; nothing felt particularly out of place, or wrong, and the pain wasn’t sharp or unusual.  I did a few look-overs of my bike, and was relieved that everyone seemed to have been telling the truth: it would need further evaluation, but there was nothing glaringly obvious.  I was sure that the drivetrain would be mangled, but all that had happened was the chain came off (and one of the police or firemen had actually put it back on for me while I was in the aid car, how nice!) and otherwise, not even a scratch on the derailer.  The entire cockpit was jammed down, but that could be adjusted back into place; otherwise, there wasn’t a scratch on the frame itself.
The carbon on the front of the brakes was all scuffed up.  Definitely not aesthetically pleasing, but at first glance, didn’t seem to be too bad or affect function.  The only thing I could see was a slight spot on the front near the scuffed-up brake levers, where it looked like there might be a crack in the carbon.  Or maybe it was the clear overcoat that just was cracked.  Or maybe it was just hairline crack that was nothing to worry about.  Or maybe the entire right side was about so snap off and needed to be replaced and oh gosh, stop looking, Rosanne!  Not much to do about it now.
(I did take another look at my bike last night; I brought the bars back up, and checked the rest of the bike again—not even a scratch on the frame.  Still worried about the potential crack, but will have someone else take a look.  I tried putting some weight on it to see if I could feel any give, but it was kind of hard to tell in my current state.  The only other thing I found was that the rear wheel is all bent.  Not sure if it can be trued, but in any case, that likely contributed to the crash.  I’m guessing that the big bump ended up bending the wheel, which in turn caught the brake and flipped me over.  The tire deflated along the way, so something definitely hit it hard.  Alternatively, it got bend while flipping through the air and crashing to the ground...)
And that’s the story.  Now I’m here, bored, but also beaten up and not able (or really wanting) to do much of anything.  Seafair triathlon next weekend is off.  This is really depressing, and I’m trying not to think about it.  Even Nationals is questionable, but we’ll see how soon I can start swimming again—fingers are crossed.  I hate seeing each day go by, and a big fat “zero” for my training that day.  I need to get my bike fixed, get a new helmet, get new shoes (also destroyed), and new shorts since my favorite pair are now ripped to shreds on the leg.  I also need new skin, please.

The offending crack in the road.  Fix this, King County!

The helmet that saved me.  So thankful it did it's job!!

All jammed down; I have since re-aligned it and looks much happier :)

The most damage on the left side.  I can thank the entire left side of my body for protecting the bike.  Judging by me left leg, it certainly saved a lot.

Potentially the most worrisome, if this is truly a crack, and truly a problem.
Aside from the protential crack issue, this is the worst of the damage.  Not pretty, but so far the brakes appear to work just fine.

3 days later - back

3 days later - arm

3 days later - leg (upper)

3 days later - leg (lower)

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Bike computers and shoes

Yesterday, I got on my bike and—the computer was dead.  Well, the screen was; I think it just needs a new battery?  What I really need to do is just get a new garmin..but whatever.  Anyway, I finally gave up trying to make it come to life, and had to ride without knowing my speed or distance or anything (strava on the phone app in my back pocket doesn’t help much real-time).  I got used to it, of course, but it was still aggravating!  Turns out, I kept a pretty decent pace, so maybe I should intentionally ride “blind” like that more often.  If nothing else, it’s a good confidence booster to know I “can” ride just fine based on feel.

Swimming this morning was…fine.  As fine as it can be, I guess.  I just feel so clunky in the water, especially right when I start.  And then I start to feel like I get into a groove, and then I lose it.  It’s also hard to tell sometimes if I’m actually going faster or I just feel like I am because I am working harder due to terrible form; or if I’m actually swimming more efficiently, or I just feel like I am because I have slowed way down and am hardly moving.  I think I’ll try to get at least one more lesson in before September, but hopefully before August.

It’s also frustrating to not know how fast I “really” am.  So far, I’ve actually swam a lot faster in races than I am at the pool (or lake), which is great!  But, it also means that I get pretty down on myself when I go to the pool and feel like I swam pretty well, and it turns out I was way slower.  Not like my timing mechanism is very accurate in the pool—just using the stopwatch on my watch, and then there’s all the extra time to start/stop it, and turn around at each end, etc etc etc…  I guess it should just be a lesson in not focusing on that so much, and focusing on the actually swimming and getting better.

In other news, I got new shoes today!  My old shoes were starting to feel a little run down, and it was about time to get new ones anyway.  I’ll try to slowly break them in and still use my others for a bit longer, but I want these new ones to be my shoes for August and September. Most importantly, they are BRIGHT PINK!  There’s also some blue, but I wish the blue was a little brighter.  Oh well.  I definitely need to change the laces I think, but we’ll see.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

How I Feel About Swimming

A haiku:

The pool was crowded today
I am slow and sore
Swimming is really stupid

In other news, it looks like it'll be hot this afternoon.  I'm looking forward to a good run, but the heat might make it less-than-fun...

Running was ridiculous. I can't decide if running in the heat is good (it builds character! Just do it!) or just plain dumb. I didn't push it, since I remember very clearly how I crashed and burned last time i tried to push it too fast in the heat..but still. Blehhhh. 65 minutes felt like forever, but I guess my 8:17 average wasn't too terrible, all things considered.

I need to get my running back.  I feel so awkward running these days. :(

Monday, July 7, 2014

A busy weekend

Long weekends are great.  I’d say they are also exhausting, but I like that, so they are still great :)
Friday was a rest day, but I went mountain biking instead.  I guess it counts for the bike ride I didn’t do on Sunday.  It was my favorite kind of day on the bike: cross country and tough work, but also some time with the “fun” stuff, including a new gap jump on HLC for the first time!!!  Probably a lot more exciting than it should be, but that’s ok.  It’s so nice to be getting my confidence back, and being able to attack new features like that (rather than shying away, post-collarbone).
Tried to stay relatively easy on Saturday.  It was a short long run (wait, what?) since it was still recovery week.  I was NOT feeling well.  I wanted to keep it easy, and not worry about pace, but I was really, really dragging.  Finally stopped at the halfway and found a bathroom and gave myself a quick break (and mental pep-talk) and that helped some.  I still kept it easy, except that I decided I needed to really push it for one mile at the end.  So, that was nice—still a nice, easy run, but I did have 7:12 of running hard and pushing myself to go fast.
The other exciting part of Saturday was—adopting a new cat!  She is 2 years old but so tiny!  She is also a polydactyl with way too many toes, so her paws are huge…meaning she just looks like a kitten!  We are still working on the adjustment (Xyla is not amused) but she’s a real sweetheart and I’m really looking forward to getting to know her better.
Sunday was the Vashon Xterra.  What an…experience.  It kind of went like this:

- Swim: SO MANY JELLYFISH.  So many.  Huge jellyfish.  Get away!  Keep swimming, don’t think about the jellyfish, just get through them and don’t freak out.  Oh look, you passed someone.  And he’s still behind you!  No way!  Ok, keep swimming, get through the giant marsh of jellyfish again..and get out of the water!
- Bike:  giant hill.  Can’t even walk up it, much less tote a giant bike.  Find some people, and either chase or lead them.  Don’t slide out on the corners.  Repeat.  Why did I forget a water bottle?  Running does not sound fun, dehydration is setting in…
- Run: get to the end.  Why are you running soooo slow??? This is absurd!  Pass a few people anyway, feeling a lot better towards the end.  Gee, this is a great bike trail, why are we running here instead of mountain biking?  Look at that awesome little jump!

I did alright, I suppose.  I’m happy with the times, I’m just not sure how I feel about the mountain biking part.  I like mountain biking as my fun, no pressure, play on the trails kind of thing.  This was making me think a lot more about who was around me, and going faster, and also trying to save some legs for the run…  Oh well, great experience and it was still a lot of fun.  And as much as those jellyfish scared me, I know it was great experience to get in the water and do it anyway.
Looking forward to ramping training back up this week!  I skipped my swim this morning, mostly because I swam yesterday and I was exhausted…but now I’m glad, because my back is actually really sore.  I guess I was swimming hard (for me, at least).  Back at it tomorrow!  We also have family visiting this week (Tuesday-Tuesday) sooo it will be interesting to see how things go.  I am planning to keeping the same training schedule, but it’ll still be kind of tough to fit in the socializing and the training AND the sleeping…

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Let's go!

Ok, so I’m doing it. I’m starting this silly log. Except I can’t pretend that I think it’s too “silly” because clearly, I’m doing it on my own free will :)

Anyway, we’ll see how this goes. I am a writer who hates to write, if that makes sense. And by that I mean: I talk a lot and think and re-word things in my head; I analyze everything, and pay close attention to details; I “write” plenty in my own head, crafting the best sentences I can to clearly illustrate a point; but I very rarely actually write anything down.

Sometimes, though, it’s good to get things out. Now that I am officially “training” (more on that later), it follows that I spend a lot of time thinking about training. How do I feel? What’s my schedule like this week? How do I feel about that? What do I need to work on? How do I feel about what I need to work on? What do I need to stop obsessing about? How do I feel about thinking that I need to stop feeling like I need to think about how I feel? Calm the heck down, Rosanne!!! Keeping track like this is just an effort to get these things out of my head (and drafted for posterity, great). I will say that my writing is exactly how I think; I have a solid writing background (thanks, ICS!) but I ignore a lot of traditional rules for good writing, because that’s not how it sounds in my head. And I don’t care. (See what I did there? I started a sentence with a conjunction!! The horror.) Deal with it.

Plus, if I write this down somewhere, maybe I’ll stop annoying people with endless rambling about my super exciting run. “Good story, Rosanne. You ran and your knee hurt but then it felt better and now you are happy. Cool.” I know my friends are already sick of me, and it’ll only get worse. Whooops.

Moving on.

Like I said, I am “training.” I STILL cannot for the life of me think of myself as “in training” or as an “athlete,” although I am slowly starting to think that maybe I should. Maybe. In my mind, I’m just a girl who really likes to do stuff and keep moving, and be the best that I can be at something. I’m all about improvement, not just a stagnant mediocrity. I am also really stubborn. Luckily, I have fallen in love with this triathlon business, even though I am still 100% a rookie who has no idea what she is doing. But, hey, it gives me a chance to obsess about THREE different sports!

So here’s the deal: in the next 12 months, I have the following planned…

- July 6: Vashon Xterra (Sprint-ish, I guess)
- July 20: Seafair Triathlon (Olympic)
- August 9: USAT Nationals (Olympic)
- September 13: Black Diamond Triathlon (Endurance-long-distance-whatever…it’s a 70.3)
- September 21: Kirkland Triathlon (Sprint) – tentative, just to compare to last year (which was my first tri ever, aww how adorable)
- October 19: Nike Women’s Half Marathon (San Francisco)
- June 28, 2015: Ironman Couer d’Alene

Wait, what? Yup. Finally doing it. I say “finally” because I feel like I’ve been thinking and planning and obsessing about it in my head for forever. We can just ignore the fact that I’m impatient and am probably just being reckless. Whatever.

Anyway, as you can see, this gives plenty of time for me to get totally in my head and focused on training. My main focus is on Black Diamond and building endurance for that, although Nationals is really on my mind, too—while I know that I am nowhere near fast enough to even come close to being competitive in it, I do know that I want to be as fast as I can just so that I don’t look totally stupid and out of place on the course. So I’m simultaneously trying to focus on speed and endurance. You know, a really smart thing to do because it’s not like that’s physically impossible, or anything ;)

With all that said: this week is a recovery week and as much as I am trying to enjoy it, I am bored out of my mind. Thank goodness for a holiday weekend which means I can spend lots of time “taking it easy” aka mountain biking. My logic is flawless.