Apr 27, 2008

a 4 sport weekend

I started out the weekend the best possible way - for me - I went skiing at Alpental with my brother Kelly. There is soo much snow it blows me away. I have skied at Alpental for a long time and know all the details of the mountain but shoots are filled in, runs are less steep, the entrance to International is a breeze. But even with all the snow I felt completely at home on the mountain. I took a bunch of photos and video just to capture everything so I could take it home with me. Especially the little things like the sound of the chair lift and the amount of snow covering a band of cliffs on a run. Kelly was nice enough to take a video of me skiing :)

We skied half the day and really the only reason I left was so I had something left in my legs to run later in the day. I hope some day I feel the same way about swimming, biking and running but at the same time maybe I never will. There is just something about skiing and everything related that is so special to me.

Okay enough about how much I love skiing lol. In the evening after a bit of rest and refueling Kyle had to take his bike into Speedy Reedy so I talked him into running a 7 mile loop around greenlake - well a 6 mile lop with an added mile. It worked out really well he went easy and I went moderate to keep up with him. I love it when I get a chance to train with him - our athletic interests is what brought us together in the first place. In all we ran the 7 miles in 56 min and I felt really strong even though I had skied earlier and my legs were a bit tired to start. My calves were a bit tight so I wore compression calves to bed which seemed to help a lot because they were not as sore in the morning.

This morning while Kyle played with bikes some more I went for a swim - I was just happy it was only 2500 yds and not another crazy 2700 to 3000 one. Otherwise the swim just felt okay nothing really special just got it done.

Next up was a bike ride - again it was just Kyle and I. I did not really want to do 2:30 bike ride by my self so I sort of had to tag along with Kyle and his work out. He compromised and assured me he would go easy on me and not completely run me into the ground or leave me. We decided to ride out to Snoqualmie falls but to cut miles just ride out on Hwy 202 and skip going over the plateau and going through Carnation. He wanted to try and get 60 on his new bike and I knew that was not going to happen for me so depending on how he felt he could always add on miles at the end.
First off super bad timing going through Marymoor Park - traffic was horrible because Corteo Cirque du Soleil is in town and we were going through the park as people were coming for the midday show. It took forever and was kind of sketchy with all the cars. Once on 202 I just hung on to Kyle's wheel figuring it was safer for us to be together. It was relatively flat with only a few little rollers. It gave me a great opportunity to spend some time down in my aero bars and just spun - which my legs appreciated. We did not really have to climb until we got to the bottom of Snoqualmie falls. The climb was great - my legs were warmed up and just cruised up - even passed a guy :) I pushed my self a little harder than I expected but my legs felt so good. We stopped at the top and looked at the falls and all that.

Both Kyle and I were hungry so we decided to ride up to Snoqualmie ridge to get lunch and some coffee. I took this second climb nice and easy just spun the entire way. We stopped first at Starbucks then I was craving french fries so we went to a burger joint up there - took almost an hour lunch. Then headed back down. We planned on just going back the way we came but some bug got into me and I decided I wanted to go up the stair step hill instead. No clue why but I did and of course Kyle was game. He cruised up it crazy fast and I just took my time and did not push it to much. The rest of the ride home was uneventful -except that of course it had to start raining the last 5 miles.
I knew I was way over my scheduled time but I figured that in the end it would be good training for Hawaii.. I also knew I would get a reprimand from Coach at some point (and already did) but I was was enjoying being on my bike. I spend lots of time running and never feel like I get enough time on my bike especially since every time I ride I feel stronger. Yes I know I have a half marathon next weekend but in reality Hawaii 70.3 is important to and I will be good the rest of the week - I promise. Lots of healthy food, rest and mental training this week to get ready to race. In the end it was 55ish miles in 3:33 ride time and great confidence builder for me. I started strong and ended strong - and did not feel like I over did it.
I took an ice bath as soon as I got home, then a hot shower, put on my compression calves on again, and took a little nap. Had a good dinner, put my feet up for a little while and now off to bed to get some recovery sleep and dream of skiing ;)

Apr 25, 2008


It was just sort of an ok week nothing special - I got all my training in and everything but never really felt stellar. Just sort of got it done kind of week I guess. One of the goals was to get 3 work outs for each sport - so far I have 2 done sp I just have to get a swim, bike and run in this weekend.
Let see Monday I had off as a rest day. tuesday I ran at lunch and the swam 3000 yds - by the end I was a complete prune and was exhausted. Wednesday I rode to and from work - 5 min faster on the way in than the last time and 5 min slower on the way home because of baseball traffic. Thursday morning I had pilates with lots of jumping and worked on rotation a lot. In the evening I ran with 2 min hill repeated 4 times - I choose a good long hill for the repeats but the rest of my route was also hilly and shorter than I expected so I had to run in circles a bit to get the full 5 miles. I was so beat I could have drank a gallon of chocolate milk afterwards. Tonight I swam again - not quite as far but for the first time Coach had me do intervals - 200 in 3:45 and I could just not do it - I was 3 seconds over both times and I was going at full effort. I was just not really feeling it tonight.

Now what I am excited about is tomorrow I'm going skiing at Alpental with my brother. Alpental has always been my winter home away from home. I just love the place. It is where I always feel myself, I spent a lot of time with my Dad there, I met Kyle there, it has a very special place in my heart. And I have not gotten in very many days of skiing this year - of all years when they had amazing snow all winter. It may not be the best timing for my other training but I feel the need to go up and be in the snow.

Other thoughts these days is that Vancouver Half Marathon is next weekend and Hawaii 70.3 is a MONTH away.. Only a month!! I feel like I need more time to be more prepared. I don't feel ready even though I am way stronger than I was last year at this time but still.. Now I can't wait to go to Hawaii and spend some time in the warm sunny weather but I don't exactly feel ready to race. I want to be faster - way faster than last year. I was injured last year and had to walk almost the entire half marathon - so I feel like I need to prove something this year. So I have a month to get my head ready to race. I know my body is in way better shape and I can do it. I just need to get my head screwed on right.
The mental game is defiantly my greatest weakness - I have gotten better at staying confident during training but the stress and expectations of racing still messes with me. Vancouver will be a good test not only for my legs but also for my head. I know I can run faster I just have to believe it, stick to it and not give up mid-race.

Okay with that I'm off to get my ski and run stuff together for tomorrow. How does a ski to run brick sound :)

Apr 20, 2008

snow... again

It is the middle of April and since Friday snow has been in the forecast... it is so messed up this is Seattle. Rain yes - snow no - only in the mountains not in town and not in April.

Friday night I swam a strong 2700 yrds - it was a crazy workout based on 300s with a mix of intervals. I felt pretty good and even on the last hard sets I stayed strong and kept my pace up. When I left of course it was snowing... there was about an quarter of an inch on the grass by the time I got home. Luckily nothing was sticking to the roads.

Saturday I had a 12 mile run as my last longer run before Vancouver Half Marathon in 2 weeks. Lucky for me Steph and Kyle (who are both doing Vancouver) also wanted to go long. After confirming in the morning that there was not to much snow we headed out to the Carnation to run on the Snoqualmie Valley Trail. The temperature on the drive out was 37°F - but it was not really raining or anything. My goal was 12 miles at 8:30 pace or less but once I got started I remembered that the entire way out was a gradual uphill. The first mile or two I paced off of Kyle and never really let him get to far in front of me so it was really strange when my garmin said my first mile was over a 9 min pace - Kyle never runs that slow.. and the second mile was even slower. I just kind of assumed that my swim the night before and that I was running on trail was effecting my times and did not really stress to much about it just kept pushing. I heard Kyles garmin at mile 1 and mine did not go off for quite a while later.
I ate a gel at mile 2 and my stomach was really unhappy - I just tried to breath deep and get past the upset feeling. Which worked till I needed to eat again at mile 4ish and 7 when I had to do it all over again - but I know well enough I need to eat or I crash so I forced it down. I drank cytomax between eating which helped settle my stomach but it was never really happy.
I kept my effort level in between moderate and hard but my garmin said my pace was still rather slow. I never really let it get to me though even though the miles seemed to last forever at times.
I saw Kyle and he was surprised to see me so soon and cheered me on saying great job sort of stuff. My garmin said I was only at mile 5 so I thought he had 2 miles on me but that is not unusual. I ran out till about what i thought was 5.75ish miles - I was tired of running uphill and wanted to start back - I figured I could run a bit past where we started and still get my milage. Now last year we ran the same trail a couple of times and turned around after one of the bridges but I could not rember how far we were running - I went way past that bridge... I don't know if you can tell in the picture but it was snowing.. When I turned around I realized I actually have never been so far out on the trail. Steph waited for me at the bridge not wanting me to be out there all alone. It was so wonderful to be running downhill my legs were so happy - finally I had a sub 8 min mile. I wanted to be able to get back to an average of an 8:30 min pace so I picked it up a bit and took advantage of the downhill as much as I could.
I had planned on eating again at mile 10 but my stomach did not feel good at all so I just kept drinking cytomax and gave up on gel for the last couple of miles. I knew I was going to be over the planned time of 1:42 so the last 2 miles I really tried too pick it up and just be done with it. When I got to where we started my garmin said I was only at 11.5 so I ran out and back and then down a side road to get that last .5 mile.
Now after I got home and talked to Kyle and how surprised he was that I was so close to him at the turn around and then that I finished so much later than him.. He said he turned around at the bridge at 6 miles... the bridge that I ran way past.. So I'm not sure what happened to my garmin but I mapped it out on Gmaps Pedometer which said I ran 13.5 miles not 12.. So instead of my run being slow - I actually ran a PR of 13.5 miles in 1:50:00 (8:12 average pace) in the cold, on trail - go figure.

Sunday the weather was much the same - snow and rain in the morning - so we slept in and ate breakfast then went over to greenlake area for Kyle to get some bike part, and we went to Speedy Reedy to get a few small things... including a new addition to our household. No it is not for me (I wish) it is Kyle's he got a P2C frameset so that he could build it up as a TT bike so that his R3 could go back to being a road bike since he wants to do some road races. That brings our road bike family up to 7 (5 for Kyle and 2 for me). lol He loves his bikes. The hard part for him is that he is actually stripping the R3 of all the components and putting them on the P2C till he can get SRAM Red components for the R3 (I told him he has to wait till next month).
Anyway the weather dried out a bit and while he went to an acupuncture appointment I got on my bike and went for a ride around Lake Sammamish. My legs felt sore and heavy but it felt so good to be outside on my bike. I kept my speed around 18 mph and did not push to hard or go to easy. Most important I worked on getting more comfortable with my bar end shifters and being down in my aero bars. I actually got really hot and had to take both my hat and eventually my gloves off - other cyclists were looking at me like I was nuts. We had planned that Kyle would meet me when he was done and we would ride the lake again but it was getting colder and he did not care so we rode back out a while, got some coffee and then headed home. Which includes a hill no matter which way you go. It was good that I was already warmed up because just to stay near Kyle my legs were screaming. The climb was hard but I know that it always is and every time I do it - it will get easier (I learned that last year). Of course it started raining the last mile or two back to the house. So even with the crazy weather I managed to get a 2:15 hour ride in - which is way more fun than sitting on the trainer.

With that I'm very happy that tomorrow is a rest day - no work out except fallowing Coach Colleen online in the Boston Marathon :)

Apr 18, 2008

"working mom takes on the trials"

I found this video very inspiring - I think mostly because she had not been a runner till she was adult and even though she is juggling a job, kids and a life she is reaching her goals and is just crazy fast. Runners world has a bunch more really good videos on their site - completely distracting.

Apr 15, 2008

feeling strong

I had another good weekend of training. Started it off on Friday with a swim test 10x100 with 10 second rests - I managed to go sub 20 min which brought my average pace around 1:50 for 100 yrds. A 10 second improvement from a couple months ago which makes me feel good about all the time I have been spending in chlorine.
Saturday I got another swim in before picking up my bike from Speedy Reedy - I had the handle bars cut a bit shorter, had the derailed adjusted (I sort of messed it up when I crashed the other week), and new brake pads. As always they did a wonderful job with it - esp the derailed was so much smoother and did not slip when I climbed. Monique met met at the shop and we headed out for a nice easy ride to Seward park. It was crazy warm - for the first time this year I did not have to wear booties, legs or any of my cold weather gear. it was wonderful. We chatted the entire way and the ride flew by. Since the weather was so nice I was really bummed when I was done and wished i could keep riding. Anything to stay outside and continue playing in the sun.
Sunday morning I went with Kyle to watch a bike crit race at Recycle cycles - which really made me realize yes I may like my bike but I am a triathlete and bike racing would not really be my thing especially crits. lol During the cat 5 guys there was crash and a guy pretty much landed on the ground in front of me, then on the next lap a guy went down and got scraped up really bad enough to have to take a ride. The rest of the races were not as bad but still. Had fun watching but not my cup of tea to participate.
I had to get in a 6 mile run - I went rather flat since as coach Col put it I had done hills already this week so I did not need any more. Which I was perfectly ok with. Kyle was not sure how far he wanted to run somewhere between 6 and 8 or something. My goal was not not let him get to far out in front of me - I have been working on not giving up and having the confidence to keep my pace up. We ran and an out and back route - I hit almost every single stop light and Kyle got through them of course so he got away from me but I was ok with it. I just kept my pace up and ran on how I was feeling. I felt great. At a little over 3 miles I turned around and Kyle had kept going - I had no idea how far so my new goal was that I would keep my pace up and try and stay ahead of him. He caught me with in a mile of course but never got as far out in front of me so my new goal became to beat him back to the house. He took the long way back for more milage and I went the shorter way because I had gone out a bit further. I picked up the pace and I did it I beat him back! He ran 7 miles and I ran 6 but still I beat him back lol - I stuck with it and never went negative and gave up - it was awesome I was so proud of myself. I ran 6 miles in 46 min - that is a 7:43 pace and I felt great. I never had to dig to deep - it was just awesome.
Monday was a much needed rest day and I loved every minute of it - slept in a bit, payed taxes (not so fun but had to be done), ate dinner at a normal time, took care of some loose ends. Then tonight I had a brick work out with Col - ride 90 minutes and then run 2 miles. We wound up riding on trainers in her garage because the roads were wet and it was on and off rain. I was not really full of energy during the day but once I got on my bike and warmed up I felt pretty good and enjoyed the hour of intervals + 30 min of spinning. The best part was the run we did a fast transition and my legs felt really really good. I just let my legs go and went out pretty hard for the 1st mile and then eased up for the 2nd mile. I was shocked at how good my legs felt running off the bike - we did the first mile in 7:25! Haha that is awesome.
And with that I'm going to crash so I can be rested for tomorrows work out :)

Apr 9, 2008

love recovery weeks

I ended last week with a great weekend of training - 3 hour ride on saturday and a 10 mile run on Sunday. I felt great doing both and now I'm enjoying a much needed recovery week. I had Monday completely off from training - which was great but always feels weird. I started Tuesday with pilates with Col and then in the evening Coach Col kicked my ass with hill repeats times 6 - as with recovery weeks I did not have much pep in me but I muscled my way though it. Of course I managed to forget my garmin :( I think my brain sort of shuts down to help recovery or something.

This morning I had planned to ride in to work (or at least half way in) but I woke up late and just could not get out of the house in time so I drove my bike to work. The weather was amazing on the way in and I sort of wished I had ridden in but oh well. Instead of riding home - since I don't have overnight parking at work I drove to Mercer Island and rode the island loop and out on to the bridge (to get some side wind training) and back to get about an hour+ ride in on my single. I had to ride with no socks because I seemed to have forgoten them durring my morning rush out of the house. Luckily even though the sky looked stormy at times I managed to stay dry and it was even sunny part of the time. I love getting out on my single it is great for base training and keeps me honest - no cheating with those gears. I had to take a picture it was so pretty - just before sunset. And yes I'm a dork for taking a seft portrait but hey I was having fun. lol

Apr 4, 2008

made my day

I felt so good during my swim tonight - I let all the stress of a frustrating day go and just focused completely on my work out. It was awesome. I felt like I was gliding through the water - not muscling it. It was the longest swim I have done in a while at 2700 yds but I felt like I could just keep swimming and I was sort of bummed when I was done. The best part was that I swam my fastest 150 yds at 2:45 and I repeated it 3 time through out the work out - even after swimming almost 2500 yds. Even at a moderate effort my times were faster than normal.
It was the perfect end to a very hard day - now I am ready for a full weekend of training.

Portland's Bike Boxes

I saw this and was so impressed with the bold use of color and clean and simple design. It would be great if more areas would be so bike friendly.

For a full coverage of Portland's new bike boxes, check out BikePortland.org. Also, check out the City of Portland's brochure explaining the bike box. The youtube video is very very cheesy but does explain how it should work.

Apr 3, 2008

midday run

I got my 4 mile or 32 min run done. I ran from work down the Seattle water front. I was sort of annoyed because my garmin can not seem to get a signal near my building so it took almost half a mile before I had distance. So i sort of ran on time out and then used the lap function to get the milage on the way back and it was just over 2 miles so I may have went over my 4 miles but oh well. I ran for 34 min. At least the weather was LOVELY - 43 degrees and sunny, not much wind. I ran in a tank top and shorts and it felt so nice not to have a million layers.
Now back to work... and horrible posture at my desk that would make my pilates instructor cringe...

Apr 2, 2008

ride home

Went much better. Kyle was still way out in front but good for him :) I ate all day so I at least was not low on calories. The weather was warmer and very sunny and I dress accordingly. Though I did take off my gloves about a third of the way. I figured out since I'm not riding in daily I will bring my work clothes in the day before and take them home the day after I ride so that I can ride with a smaller bag or no bag at all. I don't like how the bag messes with my balance to much. I think this weekend I may spend some time in a parking lot with some cones to work on my bike handling skills just to get some confidence back - I was super cautious around corners and just felt a tiny bit wary of everything.
All in all I got in 2:30 of riding today and finally rode in and back from work. yeah I saved gas money lol. Every time I ride in it will get easier and a smoother process (hopefully faster to). Here is to the start of getting my bike training in during the week.

ride to work

This morning I rode into work with Kyle - or more correctly I fallowed Kyle into work. I did not feel 100% and Kyle seemed disappointed I was riding so slow but I did the best I could. About half way I had to stop and have a gel and some cytomax. My balance felt off since I'm not used to riding with a pack and I still feel a bit off from my crash - I was very cautious around corners lol. Other than me being a bit off or slow or whatever - the ride was gorgeous - it was sunny a bit crisp to start but with all the hills I warmed up.
Since it was my first time riding into work I learned quite a few lessons. To start eat a full dinner the night before - a bowl of cereal and a recovery drink will not cut it (a good thing to remember in general now that training has picked up again). Also unless Col tells me to make my work outs a brick don't - last night I ran then swam because I did not get up early enough to get to the pool before work but that effected how much energy I had today.. Eat breakfast or at least something - a cliff bar, a gel what ever - eat before riding. The route is very hilly I will warm up so don't need to wear so much clothing. Pack light! - I was smart enough to leave my laptop at home which I could not even imagine riding with now. I may want a smaller pack eventually - the one I rode with fit everything but it pulled on my shoulder and was not super comfortable. The last thing is that Kyle will kick my ass no matter what bikes we are on - he rode his single and I rode my cervelo and we were never together - and that is ok I'm happy with my training and I'm not Kyle and don't feel the ned to be.
All in all I'm proud of my self for riding into work and will defiantly make it part of my training this year. Now I have to eat some more so I will have energy to ride home.

Apr 1, 2008

feeling better

The sun is out and I feel a lot better today. Yesterday I napped and rested and generally let my body recover some more. I did not mange to get up early and swim like I was supposed to but I will get it in after I run with Col tonight.