Chasing a Dream

Chasing a Dream
John and I with our LP finishers medals

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Last week's training, 21 day cleanse, and family things...

I feel like my fitness is about where it should be at this time of the year.  Here is my week of training last week:

Run 5 miles along with some pullups, kettlebell swings, squats and upper body lifting.  I have not done a ton of strength training lately and the squats left me very sore for the next few days.

Bike workout, which included 15 minute warmup and then 6 by 4 minutes (with 45 seconds rest) at 100-105% LThr   This is a tough workout.  Sweat is flying and I have to talk to myself to get through the last two sets while still pushing hard.

Also on Tuesday, we do our 100 pushup challenge sets of pushups.  I do this with my husband, 17 yo daughter and 11 yo daughter.  We are on week 6 day 1 and the workout was 45/55/35/30/Max all with 60 seconds rest between sets.

3 mile run (sore legs from bike workout)

Pushups 22/22/30/30/24/24/18/18/MAX  on 45 seconds rest.
We have come a long was since October 24th when we started this pushup challenge.  On the first day we did 10/12/7/7/MAX.  That seems like SO LITTLE at this point!!  I am so proud of my two daughters for working so hard on this CHALLENGE!!!

Bike workout, 10 minute warmup and then 40 minutes (start at 77% of LThr and every 5 minutes increase effort 5%, start again when you reach 100%)

Swam with the high school kids I coach.  I did their first 2600 meters with them and got in a pretty good swim workout.

Then in the afternoon I ran outside (sunny but about 22 degrees) 9 miles with about a 9:25 pace.  I was happy with that after having swam for over an hour this morning.

Bike workout, 15 minute warmup then 3 by 8 minutes at 92% LThr with 2 minutes ez between sets.
Also, that evening we did the last day of our pushup challenge
26/ 26/ 33/ 33/ 26/ 26/ 22/ 22/ Max = 60  for a total of 274 pushups with 45 seconds rest between sets.

We have decided to attempt our 100 straight pushups this Wednesday evening!!!  We may not all get to 100 but we will all get pretty close.  When we started my max was probably about 20 good full pushups.

Approximate totals:
Run 17 miles / 2:45 HRS
Bike 2:45 HRS
Swim 2600 meters/1:20 HRS
Strength work 1 hour
Total time : about 8 hours

*On another note, after a lot of thought and reading I have decided to do another 21 day cleanse starting December 26th.  Last year on Feb. 1st I did the Quantum Wellness 21 day cleanse and have been a vegetarian/almost vegan ever since.  It helped me see food in a different way!

It is time to go through this process again.  This time I am using the book CLEAN by Junger.  It calls for a smoothie or juice for breakfast and dinner and a solid meal for lunch.  NO alcohol, caffeine, dairy, sugar, gluten.  I am actually looking forward to it and will try to blog daily about how it is going.  When I did my last cleanse, it really helped to know that I was going to 'report' on it daily to 'the world'.  It helped keep me focused on the task.

I went back and forth on whether to start on Jan. 3rd or on December 26.  I think it will be good to not have to teach and coach and have all the craziness that is my life for the first week.  So although there will be quite a few social functions during the first week, I will plan ahead and make it through.
It does allow you to occasionally have your solid meal at dinner if you have a social function to go to.  I will miss my wine on New Year's Eve.   I am hoping for a little weight loss (my goal is a total of 15 in then next few months), better sleep, and just in general more energy and the feeling of control over my nutrition.

There will be much more to come on this!!

Family things:

Enjoy this last week before Christmas!!  I am so looking forward to Christmas morning.  It is always a huge bonding time for my family!!
Last year we all prepared for the morning by writing down 100 things we were grateful for and then shared them as we opened presents.
This year we are preparing for the morning by writing 10 things we love about each person in the family and we will share them as we open presents.

As my two oldest get to the point where they are going to be away more and more, I am trying to cherish every moment that we can all be together!!

Speaking of that, Lizzie has officially been told that she has her congressional nomination and her appointment to West Point.  She also has 'officially' told me that she is going to accept the appointment.  So my girl is going to West Point!!  I am excited for all the opportunities that will be given to her, but also worried as a mother of course.  I do think that it is a good place for her.  She is smart, athletic and loves a challenge.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Volunteering at Lake Placid 2011

Yesterday was the day.  Early morning John and I signed up to volunteer at LP 2011 Ironman.  The plan is to stand in line the next morning and register for LP 2012.  The date will be July 22, 2012.
I am excited, and on July 25th 2011 when I hand over a huge amount of money for the priviledge of putting it all on the line in 2012, I will be properly scared.

This will be our first attempt at full ironman distance.  We are looking into hiring a coach as we look ahead to 140.6 miles.  It is so hard to know who you will work best with.  There are very few coaches in NEOhio!!  So we will probably be working with someone totally through email/phone.

But I am getting ahead of myself...having not blogged for one full month let's get caught up on what is going on...

*John and I are religiously following Jorge's 14 week cycling plan.  We used it last year and found some good gains on the bike over the off season.  We both love having a very structured plan to follow.

*I am trying to build up a good running base so that I can dive into 'official' Boston marathon training after the first of the year.

*Trying to get in good workouts while teaching and coaching swimming takes planning and discipline.

*The family is in week 6 (after repeating week 4 and 5) of the 100 pushup challenge.    We will be attempting the 100 pushups just before Christmas.

*We have decided to race Syracuse 70.3 on September 18, 2011 and are also going to try to fit in more Olympic distance races this summer.

**I have had two snow days.  Living in NEOhio brings on Lake Erie lake effect snow!!

**I seem to be having so many conversations with my son and husband about what 'gadgets' are wanted/needed for triathlon at the stage I am in.  Should I get a aerohelmet?   Would I ever get a tri bike?  Do I need a power meter?  Should I look into a computrainer?  I am in general happy to stay away from the majority of the gadgets and just train hard and race hard.  But should I be looking for some more efficient ways to train, and some 'free' speed?  I think this is in need of a post all itself.

As I posted on my fb status on Saturday after a good run...Time to start paying the price for a good race, good races don't come cheap!!!

Heading down to the 'pain cave'/basement to do 6 by 4 minute intervals at 100-105% LT with 45 seconds rest on the bike trainer.  with 15 minute warmup and 10 minute cool down.

Stay warm!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

coach swimming, teach, workout, make dinner, repeat....


I can't seem to find time to get this blog updated more than once a month or so.  Right now life is very full, this is how I like it most days.  My mornings start with the alarm going off at 4:30am.  I shower, put on sweats and sweatshirt, make a smoothie, pour my coffee and gather my lunch and such and out the door by 5:05am.  I then coach the high school swim team until 6:40.  I change into 'teaching' clothes in the locker room, drink my smoothie on the way to school where I arrive by 7:20.  I then teach a full day of algebra 1, geometry, and honors algebra 2.  I try to fit in a workout after school every day, try to make dinner, then clean up, get things packed up for the next day and it is about time for sleep.


My workout plan these days includes three days of bike workouts on the trainer.  They are posted by Jorge at PBM Coaching.  My husband and I both did the 12 week plan last winter, and felt like it gave us some good structure to our winter workouts.  They are all hr based.  I would love to get a power meter, but have not invested in one yet.  I love the structure of these workouts.  Just put your head down and work hard.  They vary from 30 seconds on/30 seconds recovery to 15 minutes on/ 2 minutes recovery.  They are typically about 50 minutes - one hour long including warmup and cool down.

100 Pushup Challenge
The whole family is also doing the 100 pushup challenge.  Husband, and 17 year old and 11 year old daughters do the workouts together three times a week.  We started week 4 today.  It is supposed to be 6 weeks long, but we may do week 5 twice.  The goal is to do 100 by Christmas.

I have Boston in my long term thoughts right now, so I am trying to run three times a week.  At this time between 15 and 20 miles per week.  About the middle of January I will start 'official' training for Boston and drop one of the bike workouts and bump the running up to four times per week.

I am at the pool 5-6 times a week.  But only get in for a workout 1-2 times per week.  I have 15 new swimmers that I work with on most days.  They need a lot of instruction, some days the head coach works with the new kids and I get in and workout with the 'veterans'.

I love working with the new swimmers every year.  They start the year not knowing what a '25' is, not knowing the swim circles in their lane, not knowing how to breathe properly, do breastroke, or fly.  And before you know it they are doing great things!!!

Matt's bike crash:
My 19 year old son, Matt, who is attending Ohio State, was hit by a car on his bike two weeks ago.  A young woman turning left, did not see him and ran right into him.  This is NOT a call that you want to get as a mother.  I literally felt like I was going to throw up until I knew exactly what was going on.

They told us he had 'facial trauma' but was speaking and at first they didn't think we needed to come down to Columbus.  We were at Lizzie's cross country meet about three hours away.  As soon as the girls ran, John headed to Cbus, and spent the night with him at the hospital.  He had a broken nose, chipped tooth, road rash on his face, and his top lip was as swollen as I have ever seen on anyone.  John sent me a picture when he got there and I was shocked.
I would have also gone, but Lizzie was scheduled for  an overnight at Westpoint the next night and so we were scheduled to leave at noon.

I saw Matt one week later when we went to Columbus for the State Cross Country meet.  He had healed amazingly fast.  There was just a little bruising on his nose still.  At that point he also still felt just sore all over and had not worked out much all week.

This weekend I was back in Columbus because Lizzie had an interview with Senator Voinovich, trying to get her nomination to Westpoint.  We saw Matt for lunch and he looked totally healed.  He was back on the bike (his tri bike and not his road bike as it was totalled in the crash) mid-week.  Thank goodness, it could have been so much worse!

Now we are just dealing with the insurance...the bike is totalled, sunglasses broken, winter biking clothes cut off him, phone damaged beyond repair.  Things are moving slowly!!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Columbus Half Marathon and Registering for Boston Marathon

Columbus Marathon Sunday, October 17th

Last Saturday afternoon my husband and I headed down to Columbus, picked up my 19 year old son Matt who attends The Ohio State University.  We went to the race expo, which was pretty lame.  Although after going to the Boston marathon race expo twice, I think any other race expo is going to be pretty weak.

We had our fill of some pasta, and settled into our hotel to watch the Buckeyes get killed by Wisconsin.

We all had pretty big goals for the next day.  My husband was trying to go for a sub-3 hour marathon for the second year in a row.  This year he had his sights on going 2:57.

My son and I were doing the half.  Matt had set his goal at 1:20.  With a pretty busy quarter and a sore ankle for the last two weeks, he wasn't sure how the day would go.  I have a half marathon pr of 1:53.?? that was set quite a few years ago.  I was hoping to go sub 1:50.  I had spent the last 8 weeks or so doing cross fit strength workouts, and cf endurance running workouts that call for lots of speed and not a ton of miles.  So I was totally unsure of what the day would bring.  I knew I was more comfortable running faster.  But I felt like the last three miles were going to be a question mark.

At the start I lined up with the 3:40 marathon pace group (a 1:50 half time) and vowed to stay with them until I felt like they were going to make me 'blow up' out there.  This worked for about 7 miles.  Our pace setter was well ahead of the 8:25 per mile pace necessary.  We were throwing out quite a few 8:10 or so miles.  Around 7-8 I felt like I needed to back off a little.  If I stayed at about 8:30 for the rest of the race, I knew I would meet my goal.

The day was beautiful.  Sunny, about 50 degrees.  This is a big race.  10,000 in the half marathon and 5,000 in the full marathon.  They all start together and then the half runners, just turn off at about 13 miles for the final stretch.  LOTS of crowd support, flat.  All in all, a great race.  I have run the marathon there the last two years.  I was always jealous of the people that got to turn off at 13, so this year it was nice to know I was the one.

With 5K left, I knew I was going to be very close to my 1:50 goal.  I felt pretty spent by then, but tried to push the pace as much as I could.  Crossing the line with a 1:50:30.   This is about a three minute pr for me, and so I am very happy with that.  Officially it is 8:27 miles.  But on my Garmin it is over 13.1 miles, of course, and so it had me at 8:25 miles.

My smokin' fast boys had an amazing day!!!

John ran a 2:57.32 marathon.  Finishing 98th out of the 5,000 runners and 9th in his AG.
Matt ran a 1:20:01 half finishing 58th out of the 10,000 runners and 2nd in his AG.

I am always amazed at how fast they can run.  All three of us are pretty well recovered.  I actually felt great,even the rest of the day.  Matt was more nauseous than he has ever been, but he has not run that distance much at all.  He is an Oly distance triathlete.  John had some trouble with stairs for  a few days, but is on the mend.

I have taken this week as a total rest week.  I am looking forward to getting out for a 5-6 mile run tomorrow morning, and then back into it next week.

My plans until January are 3 GOOD sessions on the bike trainer (interval training) with a specific workout planned for each day.  and 3 GOOD sessions of running per week (one distance, one speed)

I start coaching high school swimming in two weeks.  I will get in the pool sporadically during the season and it will be really hard trying to fit everything in...but I will!!

Boston Registration:

John and I have been planning on registering for months.  We have our hotel.  We had the 18th on the calender to remind us to register.  Starting at 9am, John spent hours at work on and off trying to register us.  The computer kept throwing him out.  About noon he finally got in.  He registered ME.  Thinking he would get in again soon.  He was never able to get in again.  He got CLOSED OUT!!  What the heck!

I am in, John is not!  and I am not happy about this.

When he told me that evening I was heartbroken.  The whole fun is that we are in it together.  I will be at Athlete's Village that morning without him :(

He seems to be fine with it.  He will find another marathon to train for, and be my support crew for Boston.  But I am still BUMMED!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

6 week update on Crossfit and other ramblings

It has been a while since my last post.  I am back at school, teaching algebra 1/geometry and honors algebra 2.  And my girls are both running cross country, which takes up many nights per week.

I will try to briefly catch up with everyone on how things are going.

Workouts (just a sampling of a typical week):
My goals are 4 runs / 4 crossfit WOD strength workouts/ 1 bike per week.  I consider this my off season, although I am running the Columbus HALF marathon on October 16th.  This has broken down into a typical week like last week:

MondayAM: 5 rounds for time of 20 pushups/20meter Farmers Carry of 25lb dumbells/15 squats holding 25lb dumbells/20m Farmer Carry back to start  Total time 11:43

Monday PM: Run wu one mile then 3 by 3 minutes intervals with 3 minute recovery then cool down- total 2.5 miles

Tuesday AM: 5 rounds for time of 8 pullups/ 16 dips/10 overhead squats with 15lb dumbells/10 toes to bar total time 19:43

Wednesday AM: 5K for time on the treadmill in 24:50

Thursday: Run Warmup then 4min/5min/6min/5min/4min hard run with 2 minutes easy run between  total of 4 miles

FridayAM: 3 rounds for time of 400meter run/ 21 Kettlebell Swings/12 pullups

SaturdayAM: 12 mile run (not too happy with my pace because I am having problems with a sore hamstring that has lasted FOREVER)  pace was 9:37 after the last two weeks I ran 12 miles and 13 miles with my pace at about 9:10

Sunday: 5 rounds of 30 secON/30secOFF of pushups/situps/lunges

Was planning on biking on Wednesday afternoon, but didn't!  So 4 strength workouts/4 running workouts

I am getting more comfortable with running faster on this program.  I can run around 9:00 pace comfortably for long runs and it feels about the same as what I would feel at 9:30 pace.  I am also feeling some of my strength coming back.  After doing p90x and other programs I could push out 25 pushups no problem.  After NOT doing any strength work for months, 10 pushups were hard.  I can now easily get 20 out without pausing.

My 9 mile race on September 11th I did 8:25 pace.  On October 16th for my half marathon my B goal is to PR by going sub-1:53 and my A goal is sub-1:50 which means I need to go near 8:20 pace.  One of the keys is to get my hamstring feeling healed!  I am trying to do lots of stretching and some icing, and using my trigger point ball to massage the area!

I continue to eat as close to Vegan as possible.  I seem to allow some dairy pretty frequently.  Creamer in my coffee, and cheese here and there, especially when eating out.  I am not too picky on bread and so there are egg and dairy in many of them.

I do NOT miss meat at all, and I have NO wish to eat meat.  My new favorite food blog is Fat Free Vegan with lots of good recipes.  I made yellow split pea soup with sweet potatos and kale last night, along with the asparagus chickpea casserole.  Thanks to Michelle for suggesting it.

I continue to work on losing this last 10-15 pounds to no avail.  I know why.  I can't get the evil thing out of my diet-->SUGAR!!!

My most prized possession. 

Matt is back to Ohio State.  He went to Age Group Nationals and competed in the under 19 division in Alabama a few weeks ago.  He had a pr with a 2:07 for an OLY tri and came in 6th.  He continues to be a leader of the Ohio State Triathlon Club, serving as their running coach as only a sophomore.   He is very involved with them, as he keeps up his work in Honors Engineering. 
I totally!!!!! miss having him home to ride with me and help me with my bike.  Which is one of the reasons I haven't ridden much since he went back to school.  I will see him when we go down to run Columbus.  He is also running the half marathon 'with' me (but far ahead of me).

Lizzie is having a successful Cross Country season having run a 21:52 5K  last weekend.  She is in the process of applying to WestPoint for and it is looking like she should receive an appointment there.  I will miss her terribly wherever she ends up next year, as she leaved high school and makes her way in this world.  She is an amazing person!!!

Megan, my little one, is running cross country for the first time.  She is involved in so many athletics, she will have to make decisions soon.  It has been a pleasure watching her and her group of 3 friends do workouts and begin to understand how to run!  She is only in 6th grade, and becoming a wonderful young woman.

John, my awesome husband, is going to be running the Columbus full marathon.  He has been training SUPER hard for this one.  He never seems to take an 'off season'.  He is going for a second year of sub-3 hour Columbus marathon.  Last year was a 2:59!!  It all comes from hard work for him.

For all of you out in the blog world, I have been reading all your blogs and loving them.  Just not posting too many comments!  You are all so inspiring!!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Crossfit workouts...Success, Cleanse...NOT!!

I have finished up my third week of using the Crossfit Endurance info to guide my workouts.  I am enjoying my early morning crossfit strength workouts.  Many mornings I go outside and do them in the moonlight.  To give you an idea of what these workouts are like, last Friday I did 5 rounds for time of 5 Jerks/5 front squats/12 later jumps over a bar/12 pushups.  These 5 rounds took me 13:29.  On other days I am jumproping, doing lunges, power cleans, pullups, rows with dumbells, burpees, and one morning they had me do 30 front squats and then run a mile for time.

Then in the afternoons, about four days a week, I am focusing on my running.  Shorter and faster workouts!!  Doing a lot of tempo work and interval work.  I seem to be making some progress on my running...

Yesterday I went out for a 10 mile run and felt GREAT!!  I picked a hilly route.  It was a beautiful morning, cool and breezy.  And I just felt like with an effort just above easy, the miles were flying by.  Most of them were sub-9 minute pace.  My longer runs usually are at close to 9:30 pace.  I ended up with 9:09 average pace, with mile 2 being at 10:05 because you climb the entire mile.  And I didn't feel totally spent at the end of the run.  I am very happy with how the run is beginning to feel.

We have our local 9 mile race this Saturday.  I am hoping to be able to run at 8:20 pace.  It is fairly hilly, so that is a pretty hard goal for me to reach.  Hopefully the weather will cooperate.

This is constantly a work in progress for me.  My kids think I eat the healthiest of anyone around.  And for the most part I do.  But as far as having a perfect 21 day cleanse, that is NOT going well.  In fact I have started it twice, on August 16th and then again on September 1st and both times fallen off quickly.

I have decided that I will eat as clean as possible. But getting the gluten, caffeine, and an occasional glass or wine or bottle of beer out of my diet is not going to happen.

On a more positive note, my husband had his yearly physical last week and his cholesterol was about the best the doctor has seen.  He also has cut down his blood pressure medicine to 1/4 of what it was a year ago.  I credit this to the changes that we have slowly made over the past few years.  He takes salads for lunch everyday rather than lunch meat sandwiches.  He is almost vegetarian, with meat at 2-3 meals per week.  He makes a fruit smoothie almost every morning after his morning run.  And in general makes much better food choices.

I made an "Indian Feast" for my family last week, which consisted of Indian Red Dahl (Lentils), Coconut Rice, Mango Salsa, and Tofu Saag.  All the recipes were out of the 30 Minute Vegan Cookbook.  It was delicious.

Last night I made Vegan Meatloaf and it was delicious.  My entire family loved it.   Here is the recipe:


1 pkg. Tofu (crush with fork)
1 pkg. (12 oz) of Smart Crumbles Vegetable protein
1.25 cups of instant oatmeal

2 celery stalks and 1 small onion diced and microwaved for 1.5 minutes

1/2 t. rosemary, sage and thyme
1/4 cup of chopped walnuts
3T of soysauce
2T of ketchup
1T of brown mustard

Mix it all together VERY well, put it in a meatloaf pan, and put some more ketchup on top.  Cook for one hour at 375 degrees.

It tastes very much like meatloaf without all the grease.

I am having trouble finding time to post.  I am back at school teaching and Megan and Lizzie are in cross country.  Matt hasn't gone back to Ohio State yet.

My goals for the week:
-Keep the SUGAR low
-Stretch every night
-Drink more water every day
-DON'T EAT WHILE PREPARING DINNER (this is my downfall)
-Blog more than once every two weeks!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Crossfit Endurance and Cleanse...the first week!

There have been some Ups and Downs this week.  Some days and workouts that I am proud of and some that I wish I could have back.

We will start with Crossfit Endurance. 
Basically, for six mornings per week I kill myself doing functional strength work for what comes out to be approximately 15-20 minutes.  Then in the afternoons 3-4 times a week I am focusing on a run workout and 1-2 times a week a bike workout.

I was skeptical about whether this morning workout could possibly be hard enough with it being that short.  After all, I have been through numerous rounds of p90x and p90x+ and Chalean Extreme.  That was skepticism was quickly over after my Monday morning workout left me sore for two days.  As an example of this morning workout here is what I did last Monday....3 rounds for time of 15 kettlebell swings, 15 ring rows (I don't have rings so I did dumbell rows), 15 Power Snatches (which I had to look up how to do on the internet) and 15 toes to bar (I did the best I could and ended up with hand blisters by the end even with gloves).  It took me 15:30 to do.

Other things that have shown up in my morning routines include: Power Cleans, Pullups, Pushups, Deadlifts, Double Unders with the jump rope (which I can't do but am working on), box jumps, Good Mornings, Press, Wall balls, Lunges  All in one week. 

These are tough workouts, but I feel like it is a great way to start the day and I have loved the variety and loved trying out new moves.  I can't testify to how it may or may not improve my performance or overall strength, but I plan on giving it quite a bit of time so that I can give it a good review.  (Looking at doing it mid-August through mid- November)

In the afternoon for my run workouts, which can be swim/bike/run/ or row workouts I have done... 
*a 60 minute tempo run,
*2 by 5 minutes with 2 minutes recovery and then 5 by 1 minute with 30 seconds recovery,
*a mile run time trial (it was a total of 3 miles with warmup and cooldown)  I ran a 7:05.11 and hope to get under 7 minutes next time and that HURT!!
*10 by 30 second hill repeats

*bike workout of 22 miles (I added extra miles from the given workout)  with 6 by 3minute pickups in it.

I do have a longer run on tap for this week.  I was a little sore at the beginning of the week from my Sunday OLY race and so did not feel great for the early runs, but with a little extra rest I felt very good for my mile time trial last weekend.

The 21 day Cleanse
I am on my second round of my 21 day cleanse after doing the first round in February.  I am to eliminate animal products, alcohol, gluten, added sugar, and caffeine.
I am struggling more this round than I did the first round.  I think in February going meatless and all the different foods that came into my life were so new that I really embraced it more fully.
I did very well through the week last week.  Stuck to my plan, didn't have any of the eliminated foods and actually dropped quite a few pounds.  Then the weekend struck.... and this was NOT good.

I won't say I fell off the wagon, but I Lizzie had a cross country sleepover on Saturday and 9 pizzas were ordered, and I was hungry and did not take time to prepare myself a meal.  So 3 pieces of olive pizza later, I was not very proud of myself.

There were also snickerdoodle cookies in the kitchen on Saturday and Sunday...need I say more (although it was only 2-3 cookies).

Other than that, it has gone pretty well.  Meg had a softball picnic yesterday, so I packed my own food to take so that I could avoid the cupcakes, pizza and chips.
We had a birthday party on Friday and so I packed my own food because chicken was served. 

My day usually consists of:
Breakfast: steel cut oats/blueberries/ground flax/sliced almonds/low sodium V8
snack: almonds/cashews/dried apricots
lunch: big salad with lots of veggies
snack: Larabar
dinner: see below

Two dinners that were very tasty and followed the cleanse are pictures below:

quinoa with sun dried tomatoes (Tosca Reno's clean eating) sauted vegetables with beans, and peaches from the local orchard

cauliflower with tomatoes, apple salad, scrambled tofu

One of the keys to being ready for the week is preparing my salads for the week on Sunday.  I also try to plan the meals for the week and then go grocery shopping.

I am hoping to have a great week this week, and then at the end of the 21 days I won't be changing much.  I miss bread, and I miss the occassional glass of wine. 

Congratulations to Jon, Mandy and Mary who all raced at Timberman this weekend!!  All bloggers that I follow.

I have officially signed up for the Columbus HALF marathon on October 17th.  John is doing the Full and Matt is also doing the Half.  I am glad to NOT be training for a fall marathon after running one in 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2009.  I WILL be training this winter for Boston marathon 2011, which I am already qualified for!!  We booked our Boston hotel this weekend.

How is your nutrition plan going?  Are you at a place that you feel comfortable?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Vermilion OLY tri race report

Last Sunday I did my last tri of the season.  After having flatted at Steelhead, I signed up for this race wanting to get in a 'clean' race for the season.  My son, Matt, also did the Olympic distance and my daughter, Lizzie, did the Sprint distance.

We spent all of FRI night into Saturday noon driving home from Maine--> 16 hours overnight.  And training was totally off as we spent the week hiking in Acadia and riding my hybrid around on the carriage trails.

The race didn't start until 8am, and we are about an hour away and so left at 5:30am, which is a VERY reasonable start for a triathlon race morning.  We had a big crowd of spectators, my husband and youngest daughter, my mom, my sister, and my brother and his wife and two kids.  It was GREAT to have all the support.

Everything went smoothly to start.  Lizzie was in the earliest wave, starting at 8:13.  Matt was to start at 8:25 and I was at 8:33.  So I got to see Lizzie start and get out of the water after her 750meter swim. 

Matt and I before the race

The Swim:
I felt very relaxed at the start.  I was in the wave of 40 and older women for the Oly, and it was only 15-20 women.  I started front and center as this was a local race and I felt like I could swim with anyone in my wave.  We ran a little ways on the beach, took a few dolphin dives and then started swimming.  We did two laps of the 750meters rectangle.  I didn't have too much trouble sighting and got into a pretty good rhythm quickly.  There was not much traffic and I was swimming right next to another girl for most of the first lap.  As I was finishing the first lap I felt this RUSH of guys swimming past me, and I realized that some of the guys in Matt's wave were finishing up their second lap and getting to their finish.
On the second lap, the only traffic I had were guys were doing breastroke/backstroke and other very slow swims. 

Time for the swim: 28:35 4th out of 7 in my Age group but only 20 seconds behind first in my AG

T1: time 1:55
We had a pretty long run up from the beach.  I had a little trouble getting one of my legs out of my wetsuit, then helmet, shoes, grabbed my bike and made a long run to where we could mount our bikes.

Matt did this race last year and told me that it had some tough hills in it.  Short, but steep.  He was not lying.  I also felt like there was some wind, and slight incline on the way out.  I was having trouble staying close to 20 mph for the first half.  There were some climbs, and the downhills had some gravel and turns so you had to use the brakes.  One woman passed me on the bike, we went back and forth for a while and then I lost her.  I passed quite a few men and women.  On the second half of the bike I felt a lot stronger and felt the wind disappear and could keep my speed consistently above 20 mph.

After doing 56 miles at Steelhead, 25 miles felt like it was over very quickly.  I drank on bottle of Accelerade and tried to get a few shot bloks down.

Bike time:  25.6 miles 1:21.43 18.8mph average  3rd in my age group only 40 seconds behind first

very determined look coming off the bike :)

T2: 2:05

Had a little trouble putting my Garmin strap on the right way, other than that no problem.

I was really hoping to run sub-9min miles.  My running is my weakness and has not been great this summer.  I felt great right off the bike.  My first mile was an 8:23 and I felt like I wasn't pushing that hard.  And then the heat and humidity started closing in on me.  I drank at every water stop and poured cold water over me.  The rest of the miles were pretty consistent, but at about 9:30 pace.  There were a lot of people walking, and one guy with less than a half mile left was down and they called the squad.  But I gave it all I could, just not quite where I wanted to be.

Run time:  58:17  9:15 pace  5th in my age group and 12 minutes behind 1st place.  HERE is where I lost all the time on the winner of my AG.  aaaaahhhhhhhh!!!!!! I need to improve my RUNNING!!!

Overall:  2:52.37                3rd in my AG out of 7
11th female overall out of 33

So, overall a pretty mediocre race for me.  My goals were 26 minute swim, 20mph+ average on the bike and sub-9 minute pace on the run.  Hit NONE of these goals.

Lizzie came in 2nd in her AG and 8th female overall in the Sprint race

Matt came in 1st in his AG and 10th male overal in the Olympic race

Tomorrow I will give a post updating my first week on my 21 day cleanse and doing the crossfit endurance workouts...

Monday, August 16, 2010

What is next...the next 90 days???

I have been training with focus since February.  First, for my first Boston marathon in April and then right into my HIM training for Steelhead.  So what comes next?

I took a week of recovery after Steelhead and then spent last week in Acadia National Park where I didn't do too many 'workouts'  but hiked and biked all over the park so was worn out every night.  But we had an awesome time there climbing LOTS of mountains.

hiking in Acadia fun,fun fun!!!

I did an Olympic Tri yesterday (along with Matt and Liz (sprint tri)  and I will give a race report about it as soon as the results are up.  I will just say I was moderately happy with my race. 

So now my focus for the next 90 days is NUTRITION, STRENGTH, RUNNING.

I had been planning on getting back into the strength training.  After doing p90x starting in Spring 2007 and assorted other beachbody programs, I really gained a lot of strength.  But over the last few year or so my strength workouts have been sporadic.  I have done fairly well this summer, but am looking forward to FOCUS on strength.

I have decided to give crossfitendurance a try.  It incorporates strength and either swim/bike/run or a combination of the three.  You do 4-6 strength workouts, they call these the anaerobic endurance workout of the day per week.  You second workout of the day you choose either s, b or run and so interval type workouts, time trials, tempos, etc...

I am going to focus on the run for these workouts.  I feel like I have a lot of room to improve on my run.  I haven't felt strong on my run for a while.  I am planning on running Boston marathon again next April, and I want to break 4 hours to get my Boston Qualifier for the next year.

I will still ride with our Wednesday night bike group and probably another long ride on Sundays.

I did my first strength workout this morning.  3 rounds of 15 kettlebell swings/15 rows/15 power snatches/15 toes to bar.  I couldn't get my toes to the bar but did the best I could.  You were to do this for time and I did it in 15:30 and was shaking by the end.

I had to look on youtube to find out what power snatches were, and I could only use the 45 pound bar to do them.

On the nutrition front, I am doing round two of my 21 day cleanse.  I have had a summer full of vacations and have not been too bad on the eating, but it is not nearly as clean as I would like it to be.  I did this back on February 1st and after the first round of this cleanse, decided to be as Vegan in my eating as possible.

So for this cleanse there is NO alcohol, caffeine, gluten, added sugar, or animal products.  Day one is today.  During the first round I blogged daily.  That was motivation for me to be successful, so I will try to do that again.  For me this cleanse is like hitting the reset button on my nutrition plan.

So in conclusion, I am hoping to become LEANER, STRONGER, and FASTER!!!

I do have two races coming up both of them runs.  Our local 9 miler in early September and I am going to do the Columbus HALF marathon on October 19th.  John will do the FULL and Matt is also planning on doing the HALF.

Anyone out there want to join me on all or some of this 21 day cleanse?

Monday, August 2, 2010

Steelhead Race Report and the Cyman triathlon at our house the next day:)

Not the race I was hoping for but I think there are some things I will take from this race.
Warning: This is long!

We got into Benton Harbor on Friday and went straight to the Expo at 12:30, hoping to get there early and beat the crowds.  One of my only complaints about this race is how the registration was set up.  The line was already out the door and winding down the hall and around the corner.  You then proceeded to wait in at least 5 lines to get checked off, get your waiver, sign your waiver, turn in your waiver, finally get a nice spike bag with your number, cap, etc... then check your timing chip.  The whole process did not get complete until over an hour later.

We then hopped into anothe line for free food from Pizza Hut (pasta and salad) and then heard the pre-race talk about rules, the course, etc...

We bought a few things from the ironman shop.  I got two shirts short sleeve and long sleeve and John got a short sleeve and a pair of biking shorts.   They hadn't given us a shirt at registration, but we found out later we would get one at the finish.  I'm sure I had read that somewhere earlier, but had forgotten.

We finally got out of there well after 3:00.  Headed a few miles away to the transition area on Lake Michigan.  We took the bikes out for a short spin just to make sure everything was working after the trip.  We put the bikes in transition and covered the drive train and handle bars with plastic, then took a short swim in Lake Michigan.  It was a pleasant surprise.  Very clear, clean, with nothing growing in it and no smell at all.  It was a beautiful beach, with awesome, clean sand.

We headed to the hotel and it was much later than planned.  We got directions to a nice restaurant, had to wait a while to be seated and ended up eating much later than I would have liked.  We didn't get back to the room until 9:00.  Packed up and organized our transition bags, made out bottles and tried to get some sleep.
Race morning
We got up at 4:10.  I had some oatmeal and a little coffee and we headed out before 5:00.  It was just beginning to rain as we pulled into parking about a mile from the start.  We took a shuttle to the transition area.  By then the rain was pretty steady.  We set up our transition area and put plastic over as much as possible and then hung out in a tented area for about a half hour.
We finalized tranisition, put on wetsuits and cap which were much appreciated in the rain.  By then I was pretty much soaked through.  I put my Garmin into multi sport mode, left in on my bike and left the plastic bag on my handle bars.
We began the one mile walk down the beach by 6:40 to make my 7:18 wave.  At 7:00, I ate a Hammer Gel.  It looked like a herd of ants, all in our wetsuits walking down the beach.  The going was slower than I expected and we got there just as the wave 6 minutes before mine was taking off.  I felt very calm, and ready to go.

It was a beach start.  We all crossed over the timing mat and then stood right at the edge of the water.  I stood in the front row on the outside.  The announcer finally counted down for us and we were off.  I ran a little way in the water and as soon as it was deep enough did about three dolphin dives to get going.  I was on the outside and felt like I was swimming toward the inside, but still went wide around the turn bouy.  I had very little contact with anyone on the swim.  We swam out about 30 yards, then parallel to the beach past orange buoys, then red buoys, green buoys and then looking for a final orange buoy that we did a 90 degree right turn around to head back toward the beach.

I felt fairly strong on the swim, sighting easily, bilateral breathing, and keeping my heart rate low.  I was worried that I had taken the swim way too easily and I really do feel like I should be pushing my swim a little harder.  It is just so hard to know how to pace when you have a long day ahead.  I swam at a pace I could have kept up for a long time.  My only issue was I could feel a bad rash developing on my neck from my wetsuit even though I had applied body glide. 

Before half way we were running into the guys in white caps in the wave that had gone 6 minutes before us, and then not long after we began running into guys in yellow caps from the wave 12 minutes before us. That led to a little traffic here and there.

It went by fast and before I knew it I was swimming for shore and kept swimming until I no longer could.  As I exited the water, my watch said 33:xx and we had about a 100 yards UPHILL through the sand to get to the timing mat, so my official time was 34:41 which was 13/82 in my Age Group of F 40-44

The transition are was LONG (very long) and thin so it was a very long way to run to my area, tear off the plastic, wetsuit halfway off while running, rest of the way off, socks on, biking shoes on, number on, helmet on, decided not to put sunglasses on because it was sprinkling.  Then run all the way down the line to BIKE OUT.  It seemed to take forever!! and it did my time was 4:29.  Need to get that down.

I love the bike leg!!  It was barely raining at this point and it stopped soon after I started.  The sun was actually out for much of this leg.

I got right down into aero position and started passing people.  I felt great right from the beginning.  I spent the first 20 miles keeping an eye on my heartrate, and holding myself back because I felt so good on the bike.  I was passed by a total of two women during the entire 20 miles and I passed more men and women than I could keep track of.  I hit the 20 mile mark at 58 minutes, and I really felt like I was not hammering.  At this point I felt like I was in a great spot.  I had an early wave and had passed a lot of the weaker bikers in the earlier waves.  I knew that there would be some stud guys starting to pass me soon.  But for the most part I was out of the traffic and had a open path in front of me.  I knew that a good bike was going to happen today and then it mile 22.5
my front tire went flat....
Looking back, I am actually totally surprised at how calm I stayed.  I have changed a tire by myself all of ONCE.  I was out in the middle of a bunch of fields, and actually pulled over into a driveway where a bunch of immigrant workers were sitting on their front porch, watching the bikers go by.
I pulled everything out of my seat pack.  Used my tire iron to get my tire off, pulled out the bad tube and felt around to see the cause.  A piece of glass stuck in my tire.  I couldn't pull it out with my (then filthy) hand, I had no pliers, so...I used my teeth!   I didn't really even think about it, I just wanted it OUT of my tire.  I put the tube in, and pretty easily got the tire back in.  Got my CO2 tube and ready and filled it, to have it immediately go flat again...I was feeling defeated.  I didn't have another tube...
Here is the part I am so sorry to admit...I look down on the ground and there sits my new tube.  I cannot believe I did it...but I put my old tube back in...DUH!!!!!!

Calm...Deep Breaths.....I now put go through the whole thing again with the new tube.  Thinking just wait until I tell Matt (my son who works in a bike shop and changes tubes all day long) this story.  At this point I wasn't sure I would have enough air left in my Co2.  So I say a prayer and fill this tube...and a little 'bubble' of tube pops out right at my valve.  Now I begin to think I am going to have a DNF.  I DO NOT WANT A DNF!!!!!!

So I let out a little air, and stuff the 'bubble' back in as best I can.  I know I don't have enough air to let it all out and refill.  So I put the wheel back on my bike, ask the guys on the porch to throw away my old tube for me, and try to head out.  At this point I am filthy all over.  My legs, my arms, my fingernails....YUCK!

There is an aid station at mile 25 and by then I am hearing funny things from my front tire.  I stop and see that the bubble is back and so it was rubbing my brake with every turn of the wheel.  I ask if they have air and they say 'NO', but two guys there tell me I what I already know.  I need to let all the air out, tuck it all in, and MAYBE it will hold.  So I do that, and am about to start asking passing riders for air, when I decide to look in my bike pack and see that I DO have another Co2.  So I fill up the tire and hope it holds.

and to make a long, long story just a long does hold.  I feel absolutely great on the rest of the ride.  I now have hoards of people that I have to pass and a few that pass me.  My Garmin has 'auto pause' and so I know what my ride "would have been".  I stayed above 20mph average for the entire ride.  and when I came into transiton my Garmin said 2:46, which is 20.2 mph average.  Unfortunately, the race clock said it took me 3:06.  So the piece of glass, my stupid wrong tube change, and my weak tire caused my to give up 20 minutes!!

Of course my kids at home tracking me, wondered 'What happened to mom on the bike?"  They knew I wouldn't be averaging 17.99mph unless I was hurting or some other mishap.

Final numbers for the bike  3:06   41/82  and I will say that I am proud of myself for getting through these obstacles, changing the flat (twice) and not giving up.

Again longer than it should have been, someone had put their bike in my space, so I had to move things over.  Change shoes.  At this point it was sunny and I which I had sun glasses to put on, but I had put my clear lenses in for the bike when it was raining earlier.  So throw on the hat and get out of there in 4:20.  Yikes, I know transition was a long run but I need to not give up so many minutes here!!

John said he could not wait to get off the bike and start the run.  I felt the opposite.  I'd rather do the bike over again than do the run.
I really never felt good on the run, on the other hand I never really felt bad either.  I experienced not cramps, no severe pain anywhere.  I just felt like there were way too many people who just run faster than I do.  We did a lollipop type run, with two laps on the circle part of it.  Most of it was on the Whirlpool campus, some of it on asphalt trails.  Lots of aid stations, the volunteers were great.

There were three STEEP, but not too long hills. One at the beginning which I ran, and one on the loop which you did twice and I walked (along with many of the people around me) both times.  I also walked through some of the aid stations and drank water and gatorade.

My pace stayed pretty even.  My first mile was pretty fast (a little under 9:00) but then I stayed right around 9:30 pace for the whole run.  I like that my pace was even, I would just like it to stay around 9:00 or faster.  Looking back, I don't know if I might have had a better run IF I hadn't flatted and known my time was shot already.  I just don't know.  At the time I felt like I was doing the best I could.

I need to improve my run!!  By doing two things, losing 10-15 pounds and running more and faster.  If I want to get anywhere close to where I want to place in these races, my run needs to be well below 2 hours!

The temperature was a little warm out there.  But really conditions were very good today. 

The last mile seemed to take forever, but then we got back to transition and the crowds were great at the end, and I was smiling and couldn't wait to hit the finish.  And John was there waiting for me.

He showed me his watch for his race 4:59.22!!! He broke 5 hours, woohoo!!!! He had a great race.  Good swim, great bike and awesome run!!

Final run stats 2:05
and overall 35/82 in my age group with a total time of 5:55.24
even with my 20 minutes back I would have been 24/82.  there were A LOT of fast women in my age group at this race.  Quite a few UNDER 5 hours.  YIKES!!

congratulations to John for breaking 5 hours!!

The shower afterward never felt so good.  We had an awesome pizza dinner in St. Joseph's, which is a beautiful town.

We drove back on Sunday, and Matt put on a little sprint triathlon at our house.  We actually had more spectators than participants, but it was a lot of fun.  Matt and Liz had good workouts, and Megan (my 11 year old) did about half of it with John.  Then we had a picnic and corn hole games afterward.

Matt made a special trophy to give the 'winner'.  (He won, so he gave it to the guy who was second who has to bring it back next year to pass on)

for the winner of the "CYMAN triathlon" the M looks like the M dot of IRONMAN and it is an old bike frame he got from the bike store

getting ready to start...swimming in our pond

On a final note:
I signed up for an OLY triathlon on August 15th.  Matt and Lizzie (doing the sprint) were already planning on it.  Because of my flat and not getting a 'clean' race on Saturday I decided to sign up.  It has a challenging bike portion.  I haven't done an Olympic distance tri since 2008 so I am looking forward to it.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Heading out to Steelhead 70.3...feeling race-ready!

Tomorrow morning we are heading to Michigan.  I am fairly packed.  We will get the bikes loaded tonight and make the 5 hour trek to Benton Harbor.
Right now it looks like a close call as to whether the race will be wetsuit legal or not.  Lake Michigan is warmer than ever and it seems to be hovering right at 78 degrees.  I so wish I had a sleeveless wetsuit if it IS wetsuit legal.   I feel comfortable not swimming in the wetsuit, but I think John would not be very happy at all.

I love RACE EXPOS...I am so looking forward to hanging around at the expo.  I hope it is fairly large, although not sure how it will be.  I am also hoping to snatch some nice clothes.  We shall see.

So onto the race...if anyone is interested we can be tracked at  You can search by last name 'Cymanski' 

And I am going to post my secret goals, although I have gone back and forth on putting these in writing.

I raced a 5:39 at Timberman last year.  I was very happy with my swim 34:59 and my bike 2:50, not so happy with my run 2:08.  My goal at Timberman was to break 6 hours, so I was very happy with my overall time.

My ultimate goal at Steelhead would be to break 5:30, and I will be happy with a PR.

I would like to equal my Tman swim.  I haven't worked as hard on the swim this summer as last and so will be happy if the time is close.  Steelhead is in Lake Michigan, so it seems like conditions could be much harder than swimming in the calm lake we had in Timberman.

I am hoping to beat my bike time from Tman, although I was shocked that I averaged 19.3 on the bike last year.  Tman has some hills to contend with.  Steelhead seems to be relatively flat.  But with the wind off the lake you never know about head winds.  I secretly hope to average over 20mph, but I have no idea if that is at all possible.
Mainly, I am praying for no bike malfunctions!!!!!!!

I REALLY want to beat my 2:08 on my run from Tman.  I will be REALLY happy with a 2:00 run, and I should be running UNDER 2 hours.  I have run a 3:51 marathon and qualified for Boston for goodness sake.  I have just not felt great on my runs most of the summer.  Hoping that my hamstrings cooperate.

My wave goes off at 7:18 and John's is off at 8:00.

John did a 5:16 last year at Timberman.  His swim was 38/bike was 2:46/and run was 1:47.  He was also not at all happy with his run last year.  He has run a sub-3 marathon and is looking to improve the bike and run leg at Steelhead.

John and I are going alone to Steelhead.  Last year we had our three kids there to cheer us on.  I am going to miss seeing them.  Lizzie is at Cross Country camp, Matt has to work at the bike store and Megan can't go without Matt or Liz going.  :(

I am feeling antsy from the taper.  Ready to race.  I have put in the workouts and want to see what I can do!

last year after timberman

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Mom Pride...a recap of Lizzie's Sprint and Matt's Olympic Tri

I don't get to see my kids race their triathlons very often because usually I am racing it with them.  So it was such fun to get to spectate at the Miltonman Triathlon where my 16 year old daughter, Lizzie,  was doing the Sprint distance and my 19 year old son, Matt, was doing the Olympic distance.

While the kids were getting body marked and setting up transition areas, John and I did a quick 20 minute open water swim in Lake Milton. 

Lizzie woke up looking ready to race, she was relaxed and confident.  This is not always the case with her.  Sometimes she wakes up super grouchy and looking like she wants to do anything BUT race on race day.  Matt was his usual quiet self.  Getting the race face on, and concentrating on his race.

This is a small triathlon of about 150 people altogether in the Sprint and Oly divisions.  Men's Oly had 60 guys and Female Sprint had 30+ women.

Matt's Race

Matt's wave went off first and he had to do two loops of the 750meter course.  He had a good swim for him, the swim is definitely his weakest link and he came out of the water 9th place with a 25 minute swim.

coming around the halfway buoy
He had a little trouble mounting the bike, but still passed two guys during T1 transition. 
Because the Sprint and Oly guys ended up all mixed together at this point it was hard to tell what place he was after the bike.  We are pretty sure he was 6th place overall after the bike.  He had an 'OK' bike averaging around 22mph. 

A speedy T2 and he was out to finish with a 10K.

He was really hoping to have a good run, as he feels like he hasn't had a good run in a triathlon for quite a while. 
On his watch he ended up with around a 38 minute run, which he was happy with.  On the final results they had him at a 36:36 run time, even better!
He finished with a 2:12.52 and 5th place overall.  He won the 19-24 age group. 
He lost some of his big toenail on the failed bike mount and there was a LOT of blood on his bike shoes and his new racing flats.  OUCH!!

Lizzie's Race

Lizzie was planning on getting out fast in the swim and trying to find some feet to drag behind.  Well...she went out fast and there was noone there with her.  She led the way through the swim.  Finished the 750meters in 13:04 and came out of the water with a smile on her face.

those are guys from the oly swim in the background

She had a good transition and was out on her new road bike.  This is the first race she has had clip in shoes.

She had a pretty good bike and finished first off the bike, with a 19.1 average.  After a really fast T2, she was off to run her 5K.  She is a cross country runner, but really struggles to get in a good 5K in her triathlons.  She usually dies on the run.

But...she had a great run with a 23:52 and WON the FEMALE SPRINT race!!  She was so excited.  And this is such a good confidence builder for her going into her senior year of cross country season.

She finished with a 1:26.48. 

Here they are with their hardware, after we patched up Matt's toe.  Thanks to my mom and sister for coming to add to the support crew...

They are doing one more summer triathlon on August 15th and Lizzie is trying to decide whether to do the sprint or oly distance.  She would like to try the oly because she wants to compete at the college level next year and wants to see what she can do....but she is a little intimidated by the distance.

It was great fun seeing them race, and seeing them do so well.

On a side note:
We are 3 days out from Steelhead.  I will give a final post tomorrow on my last minute thoughts.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Four things necessary for a good race...

As I am about a week out from my A race for the year, I was thinking about my race as I was riding my bike yesterday for the first of three workouts for the day.   I came up with four things that are necessary for a good race on race day.  Some of them are totally in my control, and some are not. 

#1 (and by far the most important)  A good training plan, and executing the plan
This is a minimum of 12 weeks (if you are already at the point of having good fitness).  For me this has meant at my peak training,  per week:
3+ hours in the pool or open water swimming

100+ miles on the bike, including a long ride of 50+ miles and a speed work/interval day

20+ miles running, again which includes a long run of 9-13 miles and a speed work day.  For me speed work is either on the track usually doing 800m repeats with 400m recovery (6-10 of these) or a tempo run with 1 mile warmup, 3-5 miles at tempo pace and then 1 mile cool down.

I also do strength training 2-3 times per week and abs/core workout three times per week.

My time given to training is somewhere around 12 hours per week.  Some weeks a little higher and some weeks a little lower.

#2 GOOD Race Day Attitude
Now that the training is done.  Race day it is so important to be smart, get your race face on, and put yourself out there on the line.  In triathlon, this takes some experience.  You need to be able to really push on the bike and yet have some left for the run.  You need to be able to trust in your training and go for it, but not push yourself past that fine line that will leave you walking the last 4 miles.

I feel like I have to keep telling myself as I prepare to race, "YOU ARE AN ATHLETE!"  You need some attitude on race day.  You gotta believe!!

You also need to be able to dig deep during the second half of the run and beat back the demons that keep telling you to slow down.

love Chissie Wellington, I need her attitude!!
I don't know if everyone realizes how important it is on race day to have a nutrition plan, AND TO STICK TO IT as much as you can. 
I would like to stress, once you get behind on your nutrition YOU CANNOT GET CAUGHT BACK UP.  And it all goes downhill from there.  Your training and race day attitude cannot fix a race where you do not have any energy left in the tank.

My plan (which is still in the making for Steelhead)
Wake up and have bagel with peanut butter and banana.

15 minutes before my swim wave, I have a GU.

Out of the water in T1, I have another GU.

On the bike, I have a "disposable" bottle in my first water cage filled with 2 scoops of Accelerade.  Finish it before half way, ditch it at an aid station, drink my second prepared bottle of Accelerade by mile 45 or so, take a bottle of gatorade from an aid station to put in my now empty cage and drink it before the end of the bike leg.  I also have sport jelly beans in a baggie in the bento box on my bike and eat 2-3 of these every so often.

In T2, I pee as I change my shoes.  (If you don't do triathlons you may think that is gross, sorry)  and I have a disposable bottle of Accelerade that I grab as I run out.  I put ice in it, so that hopefully it is still cold.

On the run, I ditch the bottle as soon as I can get done drinking it.  And I take water and gatorade from the aid stations.  I usually will also eat the oranges they are usually handing out.  And if it is hot, I am doing everything I can to keep cool.  Pouring water of my head, sticking ice in my top, etc....

I am no expert at this, but I can say that when you are out on the bike you can get caught up in riding, and not 'feel like' drinking.  BAD MISTAKE!  You need to force yourself to take in nutrition on the bike even though you may feel like it is slowing you down or you don't feel hungry or thirsty.

#4 Outside conditions being in your favor
This is the one you have little control over and yet they can totally affect your race.  These are the variables that most scare me because, as anyone who knows me knows, I like to have total control over things :)

These include:
(my biggest fear) bike malfunction-such  as flat tire or other miscellaneous problem 

choppy water - Steelhead swim is in Lake Michigan and could be very choppy.  I feel like I am a strong swimmer but this could take a lot out of me

head wind - Yikes!!  I hate it.  I tend to think of the wind as a person when I ride and get very annoyed that the wind is slowing me down.  I know that is totally irrational, but wind just plain sucks for me.

sucky roads - almost as bad or sometimes even worse than a head wind are roads that are bumpy or just rough.  It is not comfortable for the seat, but it just sucks the speed right out of your wheels. 
A section of road near my house was just paved this Summer.  I am in HEAVEN when riding on this 'smooth as a baby's bottom' road!

hopefully no roads that look like this

body malfunction - I know this is a function of good training, and so therefore I have some control over it, BUT...I also fear being sick that day, a calf cramp, twisting my ankle, or any other way my body can play traitor to me.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Past, Present, Future-Fitness, Nutrition, Life

I seem to have a month between posts these days.  I have all sorts of posts go through my mind daily, but here is just a catch up post.  I hope to make some more 'informational' soon.
Past-I feel like it has been a long haul of having very structured workout plans.  In February, I started my official training for the Boston Marathon.  After racing it in April, and about a week or so of recovery I went straight into my workout plan for Steelhead half ironman on July 31st. 

Present-I have made it to the two week taper for Steelhead. 

After a late start on the swim fitness, I am feeling ready for the swim.  I had a lot of open water swims on our vacation in Canada, and have been going to the Hiram pool three times a week since school was out.

I feel VERY ready for the bike leg at Steelhead.  I have done many 50+ mile rides, many of them with a group that was pushing the pace.  I feel comfortable in aero position.  As always, my biggest worry is some sort of malfunction during the race.  For example, two weeks ago the seat bolt broke on my bike during a group ride.  My seat went flying off the bike with no warning.  Luckily, I didn't crash, but it was close. 
I am 'secretly' hoping for a 20mph avg. during the race.  I was at 19.3 last year at Timberman on a very hilly course.  But I will need to find the 'zone' and not have a huge headwind.

Liz and I after her first 30+ mile ride

The leg I am feeling the least comfortable with is the run portion.  I want to run under a 2 hour half marathon, but am having some hamstring/hip issues.  I am just not totally comfortable with my running right now.  I have had some very promising track workouts, and some days feel good.  But there are some days that a four mile run seems hard.  Hoping that this two week taper will help everything feel good going into race day.

Hoping for a great race on July 31st.  I really want to break 5:30, but it will depend on conditions at the race.

Then, I am planning on two weeks of recovery which will include our vacation in Maine.  I MAY do an Olympic distance triathlon on August 15th with Matt and Liz depending on how the half IM goes.

Then I am looking at keeping things pretty UNstructured for the Fall.  I am going to focus on getting my strength back, using P90x,  P90x+, and other beachbody products that I have.  I will lift heavy a minimum of three days a week.  I will continue to run three days a week and bike at least once a week while the weather is nice.  But I look forward to not training for anything big (unless by chance I make it to Clearwater World Championships in November, which means I have a REALLY good race at Steelhead)

Past- I have been vegetarian and 'almost' vegan since February 1st, when I did a 21 day cleanse that is well documented in this blog.  In these six months I feel like I flucuate from eating very clean, to having way too much processed food and sugar in my diet.  There are many things I need to overcome.

Present- As the workouts this summer have really ramped up, I feel like the clean eating has gone DOWNHILL.   Too much sugar, too much processed foods such as bread, pretzels, crackers and too much caffeine in the mornings with my coffee to start the day.

Future- I am planning another 21 day cleanse that will begin late in August, after our trip to Maine.  I am not sure if it will be exactly like my February cleanse, or a little more structured following The Swiss Detox.  But it will include NO caffeine, added sugar, alcohol and of course no meat or dairy.  It will include LOTS of fruits and vegetables. 

I have 10-15 pounds on my body that are totally unnecessary and need to go!!

Past- This has been a great Summer so far.  It is so nice to have Matt home and so my whole family sitting down to dinner many nights.  It started off with the century bike ride which I got to share with Matt and John.  Then went on to my trip to Punta Cana with John which was very restful and fun.  About a week later the family went to our favorite place on earth with friends.  The cabin in Canada. 

the cabin

Megan just finished up a very successful fastpitch softball season.  She is a lefty pitcher and had a great year.
Megan pitching

I love so much about my life.

Present-Lizzie is going into her senior year and so is making decisions for post-high school.  She is seriously thinking about Westpoint.  She had her senior pictures taken last week and they are amazing.  Matt and Liz are competing in their first summer triathlon this Sunday.  

We are heading to Michigan for Steelhead, and then about a week later we are off to Acadia National Park in Maine.  This may be our last full family summer vacation :(  Matt will soon be doing summer internships and Lizzie may be only off a few weeks in summer if she is at Westpoint.

School starts back up early this year--August 19th officially!