Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Brick + Long Swim

A bit behind, but did my first brick of the year last Friday!  3 hour bike, followed by a 30 minute run.

I just did a couple loops around the lake, plus a little extra on the trail for time, so it was kind of boring…but I really didn’t want to have to think and plan it out to get the timing right, etc etc etc.

First loops, I caught up to some guy at the top of a hill.  He immediately jumped on my wheel (right as we started descending, um, thanks??!!) which is fine I guess, except I would kind of like to know when there is someone 2 inches from my wheel.  Mostly so that I don’t do anything dumb, not knowing there’s someone right there!  Anyway, he eventually got in front of me after some intersections/etc through Issaquah when we were taking it easy on the sidewalks…then as we got back onto east lake Sammamish, and I was “stuck” behind him.  Not that he was super slow, but it was just enough that I wanted to go a bit faster.  We had to stop at another stoplight, and luckily he turned and started chatting, and commented on how strong I was riding etc, and I was able to take that time to hop ahead of him (without looking like a jerk, which is what I’m always afraid of).  This time, he said “I’m gonna jump on your wheel if that’s ok…” to which of course I said “sure!”  As long as I know, buddy.

Anyway, he turned off after a bit, but it was nice to at least have human interaction for a bit ;) The second lap was a little more lonely, but honestly it all went by pretty quickly.  Kind of nice to go somewhere so familiar that you literally don’t have to think or pay too much attention.  Before I knew it, I was back in Redmond and did some quick math to see how much extra to tack on on the trail…and it came out just about perfect!  I am super lucky and have awesome friends ;) so I was able to use Mac and Kyle’s garage for all my stuff…meaning I didn’t have to work out of my car’s trunk, and could instead have a little space to strew my stuff around, etc.

After a quick, 3:57 swap to my run stuff (yes I timed it, but only because Shawn told me to try to keep it under 5 minutes, so of course I had to try to be as precise as possible), it was time to run!  Gosh, I’ve missed that awful, awful feeling of running off the bike ;) My toes were totally numb on both feet, I could barely move my legs..and I was running like a 7:30 but felt like I was standing still.

Since this was NOT a race, I really, really, really knew that there was NO reason to be running that fast.  I kept trying to tell myself that but I’m really not the best at that.  In the end I averaged like a 7:58/mi so I was at least able to slow it down a little..but still feel good about actually being able to run.  Just under 4 miles total, which was pretty great, although I kind of wanted to keep running.  I kept thinking about how I would feel if I DID keep running…for another 20+ miles.  And after double the distance on the bike.  And also a swim.  Kinda scary.

Anyway, legs started feeling alive about 15 minutes in, and finally got blood back in my toes.  I’ve only done up to an Olympic distance, meaning this was by far the longest bike I’ve done prior to a run.  So, it was really good to confirm that I “felt” about the same afterwards—my legs didn’t take any longer to get acclimated, I wasn’t really that much more tired or anything, and I was able to do it just fine.  I did with I had remembered to grab my gu that I had conveniently left with my shoes for that very reason, but somehow I still managed to forget it.  Ah well.  Luckily I was (relatively) good on the bike and had a full bottle of skratch and some chomps, so it wasn’t too bad—just on the verge.

Overall, a very successful day!  I know I need to be fasted on the bike buuuuut that’s for another time.  I was at 54 miles in just over 3 hours, so that doesn’t exactly come up to a less-than-6-hour bike for the full 112 buuuut like I said—there’s still time.  Trying not to stress numbers too much.

Plus, I had the garage with all my stuff waiting, and was able to pack up in much more comfort than if I had been out of my car.  And then Mac texted asking how it was, I said I was trying to put my brain back together, and she told me to grab a coke from the fridge.  And it was the best ever.  So, win!

Aside from that, I did my longest swim yet!  Yesterday I swam 3500 yards.  Yeah yeah, I know.  Only 2 miles.  And way slow..but honestly, it was a little faster than I was expecting.  Mostly I was happy thati was able to hold steady for the first set of 1500 (bleh), and then speed up the second set.  As planned.  Not only that, but the last 500 was at like a 1:55/100yd pace which for ME is amazingly fast, AND I held it for a full 500 yards.  I honestly thought I was going to die by the end, but hey, just being able to actually push it in the water is huge for me!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Days are Getting Longer...

Slowly but surely!
Happily taking advantage of being able to start earlier and go later—thank you, sunlight!
Last weekend, Mac and I got our 3-hour bike ride in early..which was great (get it done so we still had the rest of the day, had daylight, etc etc) but also FREEZING!  We thought the fog would burn off quickly but NOPE, pretty sure it just got colder and colder.  We even had to take a 20 minute stop at a starbucks to try to warm up a bit before heading back, but of course that just made it colder….
Luckily, some hills in the last hour, plus the sun FINALLY coming out, meant that we ended the ride feeling great (and finally with feeling in our hands and faces and feet and—basically everything).  But man, that was COLD.  Unfortunately, I know I need to be ok with cold…  Hopefully it’s warmer in Coeur d’Alene, that’s all I have to say!
Swimming is…going.  Running too.  Finally starting intervals and stuff again which I love because trying to keep my heart rate down is maddening!   I can tell things are ramping up a bit, which is great—but also a liiiiiittle bit intimidating.  First brick of the year is coming up on Friday… 3 hour bike and 30 minute run!  Hah!  Nothing like starting off with a bang, I guess.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Still more swimming...

Since apparently swimming is always on my mind… 3000 yards today.  Which was basically 1000 yards of some random stuff, then..2000 yards straight.  Zzzzzz.  Also, exceptionally slow.  And my shoulders kind of hurt, but it forced me to rotate more in the water because that made it not hurt, so I guess that’s good (also means they probably hurt because of my terrible form).  I really need to get another couple lessons set up.  Busy busy busy!

I’m just trying to tell myself its ok.  I’m not about to win a swim race, and I don’t particularly want to.  The goal is to survive the swim and get onto the bike and be strong.  And while it may feel like forever, that extra time on the swim in an ironman is actually not that long, in the grand scheme of the entire day.  So, there's that.  It's kind of hard to believe that though, when it feels so awful.

Speaking of being strong on the bike after a swim, it’s good to have someone force me on the trainer more!  And have actual workouts, not just spinning idly on the bike.  This has been a pretty light week (makes sense, 6th week in) but overall Shawn is definitely making sure I am working hard.  Which I know is making me stronger, so I love it (while also hating it).  Super looking forward to consistently nicer weather on the weekends too, because riding outside (when it’s usually just a long ride with no set workout) is a million times better.
I feel conflicted sometimes—I love the bike the most, but sometimes I feel it’s out of habit, like I’m trying to convince myself I love it the most.  But that’s on the trainer.  As soon as I’m on the bike outside, there is no question.  :)

Monday, February 9, 2015


I can’t believe it’s been..over a month of “official” training!

Work training took me to San Francisco last week, so there were a few days of weird hotel-training… swimming in a 16-yard pool, core work in the hotel room…and running along the water!  That was really nice, I love SF and it was a great way to see some of my favorite places while also getting my workout done.  Starting from the Ferry terminal, I went northwest up to the maritime museum, and got a gorgeous view of the city at sunset…then running back down to AT&T stadium in the dark.  The nice thing about that path/trail is it is so well lit, and with the bright city on the other side of the street and tourists everywhere, it was a really pleasant night run!

Then I got home and had a swim and then a 2.5 hour trainer ride and I got tired.

Anyway, a fresh week now.  Fresh projects at work, too, so kind of settling into a “new” routine.  I noticed I have some longer swims on my schedule in the next couple weeks, so we’ll see how that goes; I was feeling a little better about swimming and then last week happened and I seem to have lost any and all ability in the pool.  Patience…..

A rest day today is good.  I’ve been blaming “travel” on my slight lethargy and lack of motivation so hopefully today will be good for me and I can hit it hard tomorrow!  138 days, whaaaaat?!