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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The problem with apps

Forget all I wrote about in the last blog post about my speed according to the Runtastic app. I now know the thing is completely unreliable.

Unless I really can run 18.8 mph....

Which would be awesome!

(BTW - my legs look exactly like that when I run)

I used it again last night on the group run and it had my max speed as 18.8 which is just ridiculous. The overall time was 35 minutes and it says I went 3.59 miles but I think it was closer to 3.2 miles. Even with the correct data I had a decent run. Though I learned an important and valuable lesson (which should have been obvious).

Never, ever, eat Burger King onion rings 5 minutes before a run. Especially when it's still over 90's degrees out.

I won't disgust you with the results of my error in judgement.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Weekly Results 8/21-27

One week left until the Star Triathlon. The first part of these results will be long so I can document the brick. The rest as you'll see will go pretty quickly. My husband is out of town and we're about to start classes at the Uni so there hasn't been a lot of focus on working out this week.

Sunday 8/21 - Second group brick. Went MUCH better than the first brick. Same distance on the bike and run (just under 9 miles bike and 1.5 mile run). The heat was a bit better. I used my gears more effectively. I didn't try to keep up with the road bikes which killed my heart rate before. I used Nuun and Chomps during the ride to keep energy levels up. I tested out the Runtastic app on my BB and while it was a bit cumbersome to get set up while I was biking and then switch it to running it was the first time I could get real stats on my ride.
Bike - Mileage 8.85 (but I missed a couple hundred feet while trying to get it started), time 37 m 38s, Avg speed 14.1, & Max speed 19.2. It didn't give me a mean speed but on the chart I spent the majority of my time between 14 and 18 except for the hill (small but deadly especially after 5 loops) which dropped me down below 10. Finally I feel confident enough to say my goal of 14 mph on the race is realistic and could be a bit faster with a flat course and no wind.
Run - Mileage 1.37 (once again it took me a bit to get it started), time 15:38, Avg speed 5.3 mph, & max speed 6.7 mph. I had two short walking breaks on this run but overall felt much better about it than the previous week where I couldn't run at all.
Monday 8/22 - Should have been swim but I didn't get to it.
Tuesday 8/23 - Group run - intervals. Ended up going a little over a 5k for distance. Used my app again:
3.21 mi, Time 35:47, Avg speed 5.4 mph, max speed 11.5 mph (I have a very hard time believing that one - it might have been while I was going down a hill) I think my real max speed was about 8 mph. The intervals were 1 min fast run and 2 min recovery. In the end my recovery times were walks.
Wednesday 8/24 -Group swim. Did a time trial. I struggled, and I mean struggled, through the 200 yards and had a time of 4:43. So I wasn't far off with my swim goal of 5-6 minutes. I don't plan on going faster than 4:30 for the race.
Thursday 8/25 - So tired. Nothing.
Friday 8/26 - Another busy day. Nada again.
Saturday 8/27 - Cleaned my house - does that count?
Weight - only God knows.

Song of the week: This week's mental cadence song for our brick. I don't remember this video from the 80's but like most videos from the 80's it has very little to do with the actual song...

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Darn you GroupOn and your low, low, prices!

Just added a fall race (for 1/2 the price of regular registration fees):

After this one I just may be tempted to drink beer in the morning...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Weekly Results 8/14-20

Another week closer to the tri.

Sunday 8/14 - 16.4 mile bike ride with a couple of "real" hills. Had good company with one of my group mates that made the ride very enjoyable. The temps were awesome. Growing realization that I do not want a mountain bike or even a hybrid.
Monday 8/15 - Swim drills. Epic fail at flip turns. Felt like the first time in the water. Somewhere around 600-700 yds.
Tuesday 8/16 - 35 min run. Back to miserable hot weather. Ran at even 11 mm splits. Enjoyed my music since I was on my own for the run (people either faster or slower than me).
Wednesday 8/17 - Group swim. First time to swim 200 yards in one try. Felt a bit scared. Wasn't as bad as Monday's swim. Survived and even survived when she made us do it again. Still planning on taking this part as slow as I can (6'ish minutes for the swim).
Thursday 8/18 - Felt wiped out so I didn't bother to wake up early for a bike ride. Kind of planned to bike after work but then the time was spent buying things at Fleet Feet to use my 10% tri discount and then at B&N with my husband. Didn't feel too bad about an extra rest day when all was said and done.
Friday 8/19 - Regular rest day. Thought about a workout but wanted fresh legs for the 5k
Saturday 8/20 - 5k race. 75F with about a 10 degree increase with the heat index even at 7 am. Lots of fun though. Good route (out and back along a flat, mostly shady road). 1st mile was 10:30, 2nd mile was 10:32, didn't have a marker for the 3rd mile but knew I would have 10:30 splits. Finished at 32:30. Though it was slower than previous 5k's I was still happy with my time given my current fitness level and the heat. However, I was so sweaty my earbuds wouldn't stay in my ears - kept sliding out at the end of the race.
Weight loss - about 1 pound but I'm not being good about my diet. Don't have enough time between work and home to track my calories.

Song of the week:
I know I've posted this video on here before (maybe a year or so ago) but I love it and I used it for this week's mind cadence for our brick since I don't use music while on the bike.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Friday, August 19, 2011

So I won't be doing flip turns...

My attempts at flip turns were comical. I'd get upside down and be completely confused as to which direction I was supposed to go. After a few tries I stopped and went back to drills (which were also awful). The pic to the side is not my own but yet another stolen image: http://triandfinish.blogspot.com/2011/01/flippin-flip-turns.html kind of funny that they also stole it. We discussed flip turns at the group swim on Wednesday. We have a couple of really good swimmers in our group and I made the comment that I kept waiting for the girl in my lane who used to competitively swim do some flip turns. She and the coach agreed that Tri's are no place for flip turns since you're most likely going to run into someone since everyone is sharing lanes.
So there you go. I got a nose full of water and some humiliation (as I'm sure I entertained the lifeguards) all for nothing. Or maybe I was just mad because drills on Monday did feel so awkward and awful. It was as if it was my first time in the pool. I didn't look forward to Wednesday very much.

Tuesday night was the group run. Hot again but not as hot as it has been.Solid 11 mm for 35 minutes. Ran by myself this time as I was slower than the the 3 or 4 people in front of me but faster than the 3 people behind me. All the time thinking - these slow pokes better show up to the brick on Sunday so I'm not coming in last again. My pride can't take flip turns and coming in last all in the same week.

On Wednesday we were informed that we would be going the distance that night - 200 yards at once. I was terrified. It wasn't fun, it wasn't smooth but I did survive. Then we had to repeat it. And actually the second time was a bit better than the first. When given the choice to finish with another 200 or 100 if we felt tired I wussed out and took the 100. I was tired.

I end every single swim with a massive craving for a strawberry shake. I haven't given in yet but it sounds so yummy.

Tomorrow is my first race since last Thanksgiving and that ended up being a 4 mile walk since I woke up fighting a stomach bug. It's a local 5k and I have no plans for time. I'm treating it as a training run - just with a lot of other people. I'll keep my 11 mm pace and have fun. This is also a test for the new bungee ties I got for my shoes. I seriously need to make a post to highlight all the crap I've bought in order to do a tri. One day - one day I'll get to it...

Monday, August 15, 2011

In case you were wondering...

This is what I'll be working on in the pool today:

I have not yet even attempted a push turn. It may mean I come up choking on water for the first few times.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Bienvenido a la jungla

I did all my workouts this week and had good intentions of updating the blog but I never got the time between work and home. So here's everything in an extended weekly review.

Sunday 8/7 - First Brick. 10'ish miles bike and 1.5 mile run. 30000 degrees F with 4209644.25% humidity.
The day started off a little stressful. I spent the morning working on a project for a graduate class and my husband and brother in law (who's visiting) were trying to help by getting the kids out of the house. Unfortunately they took both cars and neither had plans to be back by the time I needed to leave to meet the group. Thankfully I was able to track down my husband at Gold's Gym and told him to get home "right now". Unfortunately (again) the car he had was not the one with the bike rack and the trunk was full of kids' toys and junk we're eventually going to get rid of. I didn't have a lot of time so there was a lot of throwing things around and muttered curses as I cleared the trunk and back seat (so it could fold down) to get the bike in the back of it.
I made it on time and we started our loops. It's a good road with no really big hills but steady inclines and declines. The loop is almost 2 miles around and we did 5 loops. Then we started on the run. I've never done a "real" brick before. The closest has been 10 miles on a stationary bike at the gym and then a 5k afterwards. I would have called that a real brick before last Sunday but I now know that your muscles do NOT get the same workout on a stationary bike (no matter what kind of hills and level you put on it). Suffice to say my legs were like jello when I started my run - which quickly turned into a walk. For the first half I walked/ran but then I just got too hot and walked the rest back. I wish I could have pushed through it but I knew I was overheated. Unfortunately NONE of the slow runners in our group showed up to the brick so I was the only one walking that much. Misery does love company after all.
Monday 8/8 - Swim drills on my own. 600 yards. Found out I can do one length (25 yds) in 30 seconds but that I can't do more than 6 lengths at a time right now (actually I learned that on Wednesday). I'm really working on finding a slow pace that will keep me steady through 8 lengths (200 yds, race distance). I don't care what my time is - I'd rather get through without feeling like death. I still estimate 5-6 mins for the swim.
Tuesday 8/9 - Group run, 30 mins about 2.75 miles. Not too many showed up for the group run on Saturday. I ended up running with the coach - who's nursing an injury so she was fine with going "slow". Her "slow" kind of pushed my "comfortable but not slow" pace. But it was good to be pushed. Still hot but not miserable. Also I got my tri clothes!! So I ran in those - tri shorts and shirt (tank with zipper). I'll get a pic and review of them up sometime next week.
Wednesday 8/10 - Group swim. I think around 600 yards (I lost count). I did well and continue to improve each week. Too bad I need another 2 months before the tri instead of 3 weeks. We did some ab work afterwards and my underused muscles are still sore...
Thursday 8/11 - Bike on my own. 7.14 miles at 36 min. This one was tough. I started off and it felt like going through sludge. My legs were so not into it (I actually had planned a blog post titled: "She's not that into you."). Eventually I felt more warmed up but I never did go "fast" on the ride. I thought I was over 8 miles (didn't really pre-plan the ride) so I was disappointed to learn it was just barely over 7. I did an out and back route that will probably become my norm - just that I'll go farther out. It was the first time to test it and while it's on a busier road it does have wide shoulders so I don't feel close to traffic. If I get out before 7 the traffic isn't too bad. The road will be very much like what I'll ride for the tri so it's good practice.
Friday 8/12 - Rest day, hooray!! And I dared to weigh myself and found that I was down 1 pound.
Saturday 8/13 - Run on my own. The training plan was for 35 min (EZ) but since I now have a 1/2 marathon coming up in mid-October I knew I needed to start looking at long runs. So today was 5 miles. I purposely kept it slow - 12 mm. Forcing myself to slow down on pace. Taking walking breaks when I found myself reaching a mile before the 12 min mark. I didn't want to crash at the end. Even so the last 1/2 mile was hard to keep going but I ended at 58 min. I did stop the timer when I was blocked by a train. I ended up having to crawl under a bridge to get past it because it stopped and there was no other way to get around. I've done it before but it kind of creeps me out (bugs, animals, weirdos hiding out - there was none of that in reality but my imagination runs wild).

So a good week but I keep wondering if it's enough to get through the tri. The brick was disappointing when the run was so hard. Forget what I said about times in last weeks posts. I'm back to just wanting to get through all three portions without too much walking at the end. In any of the three areas I'm not the slowest one (of our group) but once you combine everything I'll be at the bottom of the finishers. However, I love this training. It's so much more interesting than just logging miles every week. I'm happy to be attempting a new kind of race because the excitement of just being able to finish something that I once thought impossible still motivates me more than trying to beat a PR. I definitely will do more tri's in the spring and next summer.

And here's the song of the week. Brought to you by Pandora who thought I needed a little bit of 80's awesomeness on my run today:

This one was the first one I found that I could embed - plus I knew you always wanted to know how to sing this song in Spanish.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Weekly Results 7/31-8/6

I'm still trying to recover from our first brick today but I'll save the agony of that story for a future post.

Sunday - 10 mile group bike ride. Still forgot to bring a watch so I don't know the time but it was a good ride. My legs/arse was quite numb at the end and it was super hot again. Afterwards I felt okay enough to go to Zumba
Monday - 600 yard swim, drills. Felt pretty good about it.
Tuesday - 8 mile bike ride. Did remember a watch so I was able to calculate a pace at the end. Turned about to be 12 mph once you counted all the stops and such (was mostly in neighborhoods so there were stop signs, turning, lights, etc.). The nice thing about that ride was that the air was actually cool. I felt chilly when I started. Delightful!
Wednesday - supposed to be group swim night but a major thunder storm rolled through and we got 40 min of spin. Good workout. Diet had completely crashed by this point in the week.
Thursday - morning run, 3 miles, about 11 mm. There was a group run that evening but temps were going to be high and I'm over this heat.
Friday - rest and margaritas (it was just that kind of week)
Saturday - tried to walk/run outside but more rain. Did walk 2 miles then got to the gym were I ran another 2 miles with intervals = .25 mile at 5.0 and .25 at 6.0 for two miles.
Weight Loss: not looking at the scale, if anything it will go up this week.

This week's music selection might not be in your normal running mix but I happened to listen to it earlier today and it stayed through my mind on the bike ride. Good cadence for a bike ride...

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Everyday I'm shuffling...

If I hear that song it never gets out of my head. And I heard it about an hour ago. Should make falling asleep especially annoying tonight.

But I shuffled along this morning for my run. There was a group run at 6 pm tonight but there was still a chance of a heat index around 100 so I bowed out and did my run at 6:30 am instead which was only 74 degrees but very humid. I had to change my route mid-run due to a very large dog that scared the crap out of me. I had planned to go 4 miles but ended up getting 3 miles in with 11 mm averages. My legs were shot from doing spin the night before.

Usually Wednesday nights are swim nights but we got a decent thunderstorm in our area that started right at the same time our swim practice did. So everybody got kicked out of the pool. Since we swim at the Y and our coach also teaches spin at the Y our backup plan has always been to bring stuff for spin in case we can't swim. And thus last night we did a 40 min spin class instead of 600 yards of swim. It was a good workout. I definitely needed the cardio burn since I've completely gone off the wagon with my diet.

I had planned to get some laps in this afternoon after work but I ended up working until 6 pm (August is the worst month to work at a university) so that didn't give me enough time to get a swim in before getting home to the family. Tomorrow is my son's first day of 1st grade so it was definitely more important to be at home. I've thought about getting some laps in on Friday or Saturday but we'll see how that works out. Saturday will be an EZ run and Sunday is our first brick workout.

Why the diet has failed this week.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The time has come...

The Walrus said - to talk of splits and goals.

I really haven't timed myself in the swim or bike yet so these are very rough estimations based on what I've done on a stationary bike and how people did last year at the same triathlon. You know, a "scientific way" of figuring it out...

Swim - last year the winner completed the swim in 2:15 and the slowest person was 8:20. My brain is telling me that my pace will be around 6 minutes but who knows. We'll do a time trial at some point. Then again, I haven't been able to complete more than 50 yards in one stretch yet so I might be over 8:20...

Bike - My goal is for sub 60 which is only 15 mph. If it is a fairly flat course (which is how it's advertised but they are probably liars) I may be able to go faster than that but at this point in training I feel comfortable in saying 15 mph.

Run - Sub 35 (11 min/mile). Yes, I used to run much faster than that but I haven't really been able to go much faster recently and after the swim/bike portion I don't see myself surging at a faster pace.

Not counting transition times this puts me at just over 1:36 for a finish time. I'll come back to revisit this calculation after our brick next week. Maybe I'll finally remember to bring a watch so I can time the bike portion (I'm still GPS free on my rides/runs).

Monday, August 1, 2011

Fortune Cookie Says...

Ok, it really said something about my "life affecting many others" but I thought the "B" side was more appropriate for the weekend.

Sunday's group bike ride was 12 miles on a more hilly road. They weren't really hills but it was some rolling terrain - at least more "rolling" than I've been on thus far. I felt like I did well. Not fast but I stayed in the middle of the pack. But it was nasty hot again and most of it was in the sun. Sweat poured off of me. I was once again thankful for Nuun. There was some roadkill along the way and the vultures were out en masse. It wasn't really a place you wanted to stop at for long. Unless you felt up to joining a nice barbershop quartet.