Sunday, May 31, 2009

Building some awesome tan lines

After over a week of nothing but sunny sunny weather here in the PacNW, I have built quite the set of tanlines. I'm going to have the most f'd up looking back in my wedding dress. I've put up quite the fight against Mr. Sunshine, what with the SPF 50-75 going on every 45 minutes or so. But to no avail. I have no less than 5 different sets of tri-top lines on my back/shoulders. And about 3-4 sets of shorts lines on my thighs. Thankfully, I've altered my HR monitor between the right and left wrist, so that's still good. Oh, and it's still only May!

Onto more important issues, like our fabulous open water swim and run this morning:

Swim: 10:00am, 00:38:43, 1500m (estimate)
Fun open water swim at Klineline north of Vancouver. There were maybe 10 of us. It was pretty warm and I ended up taking my wetsuit off and going back in in just my swimsuit. The best part of the workout was the handstand contest and somersaults. I could play in the water all day long!
A few of the crew getting out of the water and ready for the run.

Run: 11:00am, 01:00:05, 5 miles
Nadine and I ran together along the trail next to the lake and Salmon Creek. It was HOT! We took 2 walking breaks to get down gels and water, but pushed through the rest of it. It's going to take a few workouts to get used to summer training again.

Nadine and I after the run.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Week 5 Update

One more day until another rest day! Although, this week I'm not really feeling like I need it. Maybe it's because I missed a couple of workouts... Which were replaced with an awesome long ride today. I'm at 9.95 hours of the training for the week and still have an OWS (open water swim) and 1-hour run tomorrow. Here's what the rest of my week has looked like since the last post:

Swim: 12:30pm, 00:31:35, 1500m
Straight through swimming. 02:07/100m. Not bad for hardly any swimming, but definitely not where I should be right now.

Bike1: 5:30pm, 00:50:53, 11.50 miles
Ride to and from the VBC time trial.

Bike2: 6:00pm, 00:30:08, 10.00 miles
Another go at the Vancouver Bike Club time trial. The first time I posted a 19.82 mph average. The second time I posted 20.35 mph. This time I did 19.91 mph. But if you subtract the 20 second or so that I had to STOP and UNCLIP at the turnaround to allow a car go by (grrrr), then I probably averaged around 20.13 mph. Either way, it was much windier this week. I even puked in my mouth a little bit. Bleh.

Run: 6:30pm, 00:32:23, 2.5 miles
Not even worth writing about. Hot temps, high HR, lots of sweat. Crap-ass run. On the upside, I didn't even come close to pooping myself.

Bike: 7:45am, 04:35:51, 70.36 miles
I had never been (or biked) to Crown Point in the Columbia River Gorge, so I was excited when my Saturday riding partner, Jenn, was game for giving it a try. And even better than that, it was sunny! And I got to ride with 4 other lovely ladies! The last 10 miles or so back to the gym were a little rough, but I think that's more of a "time in the saddle" sort of issue. I'm really happy with being able to ramp up the mileage on the bike without too much discomfort. Yay!

Me at Women's Forum. You can see the sunny gorge, as well as Crown Point, in the background.

Our all-women's crew at Crown Point: Jan, Sondra, Julie, me, and Jenn.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Week 5 Plan

Week 5, Base Phase

Monday: Rest Day (I hiked this day)

Tuesday: Swim 2500m, Run 0:45 Z2 (however, travel day = rest day)

Wednesday: Bike 0:30 Z2, quick transition, Run 0:15 Z2 (I swam 1300m, biked 59min, ran 20min)

Thursday: swim 2500m, Bike 0:45 Z1 100+ rpm

Friday: Run 1:00 Z2

Saturday: Bike 1:45 Z2

Sunday: Run 1:00 Z1-Z2

TOTAL: 8 hours

lnto Week 5

Progress photos and measurements are a bit late this week due to the vacation. Unfortunately, I gained weight and some inches back. Apparantly the formula is: long weekend + copious amounts of vodka + no exercise = fat. Oh well, back on the wagon heading into week 5.
Weight - up 3.25 lb for the week (down 0.5 lb overall)
Stomach - up 0.5" for the week (no change overall)
Hips - up 0.5" for the week (down 0.5" overall)
Thigh - no change (down 0.5" overall)
Bicep - no change (down 0.25" overall)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Week 4 Recap

As much as I try, things do not always go as planned. Week 4 of training was a disaster, as far as training is concerned. As far as life is concerned, it was mostly quite wonderful. The first half of the week was filled with long hours at work and a coporate/third party audit. Major yucky. The second half of the week was spent prepping for our annual pilgrimage to the Lochsa River in Idaho...and then the actual mini-vacation itself. More on that later, but I will note that I did not realize how close to a crazy stressful meltdown I was until I put myself in some of the most beautiful country in the northwest and let my body decompress a bit. Training was not the most important thing on my schedule this week.

The recap:
Swim - 0.44 hours (1200 meters)
Bike - 1.58 hours (23.06 miles)
Run - 0.72 hours (3.75 miles)
Transitions & hiking - 1.08 hours
TOTAL = 3.83 hours

Yikes, that's a far cry from my plan of 7 hours. I hope week 5 will be better.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Week 4 Plan

Week 4, Base Phase

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: Swim 2500m, Run 0:30 Z2

Wednesday: Bike 0:30 Z2, quick transition, Run 0:15 Z2

Thursday: Swim 2500m, Bike 0:30 Z1 100+ rpm

Friday: Run 0:45 Z2

Saturday: Bike 1:30 Z2

Sunday: Run 1:00 Z1-Z2

TOTAL: 7 hours

Sort of a "recovery" week of sorts. Saturday & Sunday I'll be camping out of town, but plan to bring the bike, trainer, and running shoes.

End of Week 3

Woot! Only 27 more weeks! This week was generally good. I had a couple of rough days and got a little freaked out. Like "it's way too early to be this tired". But I suppose that's how IM training goes. As long as the good days outweigh the difficult ones, then I'm doing okay. This weeks plan was for 8 hours and I logged over 10. Ahead of schedule, but not overdoing it.

The Stats:
Swim - 1.17 hours (3300 meters)
Bike - 5.56 hours (80.41 miles)
Run - 3.53 hours (16.36 miles)
Transitions - 2 mins
TOTAL = 10.30 hours

Weight/Body Progress:

Weight - down 3.75 pounds for the week (3.5 pounds total)
Stomach - down 0.5 inch for the week (0.5 inch overall)
Hips - down 1.0 inch for the week (1.0 inch overall)
Thigh - no change (down 0.5 inch overall)
Bicep - down 0.25 inch (down 0.25 inch overall)

Okay, yay, finally some measurable progress!

Last Day of Week 3

About midway through Week 3 I was exhausted and couldn't WAIT for a rest day. Then suprisingly I felt pretty good after the long Saturday ride. It's amazing what a little vitamin D will do for ya. Sunday morning I planned on a LSD run (Long Slow Distance...not acid...although that would probably make for a more entertaining run) with Jessica. I always have a fun time running with her. We're a good pace for each other and because we want to actually talk, it keeps our HR in check.

Run: 9:00am, 00:51:39, 4.05 miles
Despite the early hour (for a Sunday), it was quite hot out, especially in the full sun. As much as I'm looking forward to more of this weather, it does take a bit of adjustment for training. Fun run.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Sunshine and Good Friends

Sunshine and good friends are a cure-all. Today was 100% better than yesterday. I'm exhausted, yes, but my attitude was much more positive than yesterday. Jenn and I did the RACC route through Clark County -- I rode a little over 50 miles, she continued on to do the full 65 (and maybe more). It was gorgeous! Then I got my fuzz threaded (I'm on Accutane and can't get brow waxes -- threading turns out to be a great alternative), dropped off the bike for a tune-up at a really awesome shop (Veloce Bikes), a pedicure with my woman of honor Desi, and now some quality couch time. I have my long run tomorrow and then a REST DAY!!!!

Bike: 7:45am, 03:50:44, 53.83 miles
The hills weren't as hard as a couple of weeks ago, although I think I complained a little more than last time. The sun/temperature was amazing and not too much traffic. The only bummer was that I had a minor crash coming to a stop sign (me and my rockin rookie skillz) and banged up my wrist and knee pretty good. Jenn must of thought it looked super cool and did basically the same thing a handful of miles later. But she drew more blood. We're okay, the bikes are okay, and we moved on with our egos mostly okay. About a mile from my house (where I was stopping) Jenn got a flat. On the rear tire of course. But she changed it like a pro. Despite the few random incidents, I had such a fun ride!

Sights on a Rest Day

Only a couple more workouts until a rest day. Based on how I felt after today's run, it can't come soon enough.

Swim: 11:30am, 00:32:53, 1500 meters
300m WU
8 x 50m drills
7 x 100m @ 20sec rest
100m CD
I modified my original 2500m workout b/c this is all that I could get in at lunch. I used fins during the drills -- what a difference! And all of my 100's were under a 2:00 pace. Even though I'm not swimming quite as much as I should, I'm still making some progress and gettin' my swim groove back.

Run: 5:30pm, 00:41:09, 3.18 miles
I made it about 1/3 into the run and was done. I'm starting to get shin splints (or something painful) on the insides of shins and my achilles are acting up. Probably a simple case of "too much too soon". I was also in a crummy mood from a long week at work. So I had two options: 1) call it a day and walk home and enjoy the sunshine or 2) crank the music to full volume, suck it up, and run home. I reasoned that running would get me home sooner than walking, so I blasted the music and gritted my teeth. Unfortunately, 3 high-school wannabe skater boys insisted on hogging the sidewalk and refused to give me an inch of room to get by. Did I mention that I was in a really crummy mood? I plowed on through with a sarcastic "pardon me boys". Good thing I have bigger shoulders than them. Also a good thing that I didn't get my ass kicked. I'll have to work on reigning in the temper.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


I rode out to the Port of Vancouver for another shot at the 10-mile time trial put on by the Vancouver Bike Club. Sunny. Yay! Windy. Booo... The way out to Frenchman's Bar was rough. I was going as hard as I can and could barely make 17mph. But at the turnaround it was AWESOME! 23mph spinning out. Wooooooo!!!!!!

I ended up with a time of 29min 23sec for an average of 20.35 mph. This was almost a minute faster than last time in worse conditions. Improvement is what keeps me going, so this was a huge boost.

Note: I did not get my swim in (again) this morning. :-( Hoping to get my heiny out of bed in tomorrow and get it done.

Bike 1: 5:30pm, 00:43:33, 9.38 miles
Commute to the time trial and rolling around the parking lot over and over again to stay warm.

Bike 2: 6:30pm, 00:22933, 10 miles
Last time = 19.82 mph
This time = 20.35 mph

Just Another Brick in the Wall...

Day 3 of Week 3 Base Phase

Wednesdays are my short workout days as far as time goes. But they are also my brick days. Bricks are hard. Until about week 15 or so when Saturdays become the big brick days and Wednesdays are the weenie brick days.

Bike: 5:30pm, 00:30:00, 7.20 miles
Trainer ride.

Transition to run: 00:02:00

Run: 6:02pm, 00:15:00, 1.25 miles
POURING rain outside. It was awesome.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Day 2 of Week 3 Base Phase

I slept in my calf compression sleeves last night. I think it helped.

Swim: 12:30pm, 00:37:09, 1800 meters
Straight through. 02:04/100m pace. Was supposed to be 2500m, but I had a doc appt to get to. I'm just happy it isn't the 2:10-2:15 pace from a couple of weeks ago. Gettin' my swim groove back...

Run: 5:30pm, 00:39:52, 2.94 miles
I need to get these GI issues back under control. Clean eating is in my near future if I plan on doing any sort of distance running...
Day 1 of Week 3 Base Phase

This was supposed to be a rest day. But having missed my long run on Sunday, and it being sunny and delicious outside, I couldn't take the rest day. I know. You're not supposed to make up workouts. Just move on. But when the mood to run strikes, I need to take it.

My IM plan has me training by HR and I have had a very difficult time staying in my HR zones on the runs. It sky rockets and stays there. The good news is that as soon as I stop working out, it recovers quickly. I've made a deal with myself to try and stay in my zones for the first month of training and then re-evaluate. The hope is that I can build my aerobic base enough to get my pace up to what it normally is when I'm borderline anaerobic.

Today's plan: 60 minutes of Z2. Since this had a few hills, my plan was to keep the average below 160. My other goal was to not walk. This meant that I had to pay close attention to my monitor and slow to the slowest trot ever at times. The end result was that I was able to keep my HR down...and I had a really nice time. Slow, yes, but nice.

Run: 5:30pm, 01:04:16, 4.94 miles

Monday, May 11, 2009

Week 3 Plan

Week 3, Base Phase

Monday: Rest Day *or* Run 1:00 Z1-Z2 (to make up for Sunday's missed run)

Tuesday: Swim 2500m, Run 0:45 Z2

Wednesday: Bike 0:30 Z2, quick transition, Run 0:15 Z2

Thursday: Swim 2500m, Bike 0:45 Z1 100+ rpm

Friday: Run 1:00 Z2

Saturday: Bike 1:45 Z2

Sunday: Run 1:00 Z2

TOTAL: 8 hours

End of Week 2

Okay, week 2 is done. The good news is that I still feel fantastic and my body is not complaining. I'm tired, yes, but not hurting. The bad news is that I missed 2 workouts: a 2500m swim and a 60min run. However, I have made up the 60min run, so the net result is a missed swim. The plan was for 7 hours and I logged almost 6.5. Not ideal, but not terrible.

The Stats:
Swim - 0.81 hours (2100 meters)
Bike - 4.08 hours (57.81 miles)
Run - 1.51 hours (7.62 miles)
Other - 1min 46sec (transition practice)
TOTAL = 6.43 hours

Weight/Body Progress:

Weight - no change (but after 6 days of period hell, I'm surprised that I'm not up)
Stomach - no change
Hips - no change
Thigh - down another 0.25" (total loss - 0.5")
Bicep - no change

Note: how can I lose 1/2 inch off my thigh and nothing anywhere else? I'm trying to be careful with the tape measure to avoid too much error. Hmm...
Days 5-7 of Week 2 Base Phase

Run: 5:30pm, 00:45:00, 3.6 miles
Nice and easy...and enjoyable!

Bike: 8:00am, 03:05:00, 43.80 miles
Another awesome ride with Jenn. We rode with Nadine around Lacamas Lake and then picked up Nikki and did the bridges loop (over I-205 into Portland, along Marine Dr, over I-5 back to Vancouver, and then back to Camas) with a sunny cookie stop at the Farmer's Market. These Saturday rides are becoming my favorite day that I look forward to all week.

I was supposed to do a 60min run, but life got in the way. Errands, housework, and then of course, Mother's Day. So, it became an unscheduled rest day. But not much rest.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Days 2-4 of Week 2 Base Phase

I woke up late and had to swim at lunch. Only to discover that I had forgotten my swimsuit. So I swapped the Tuesday and Thursday workouts...which means that I have to swim on Friday to avoid having 2 long swim sessions in a row.

Bike: 6:15pm, 00:30:00, 7.20 miles
Trainer ride.

Transition to run: 00:01:46

Run: 6:17pm, 00:13:56, 1.20 miles
This felt really great. Until about 1 mile into it and I almost pooped myself. Whoa! Mad dash back to the house (thank goodness I was running loops around the neighborhood). Apparently peanut M&Ms are not a good fueling strategy for me.


Early morning workouts.

Swim: 5:15am, 00:48:41, 2100 meters
300m WU
8 x 50m drills
16 x 25m @ 10sec rest
1 x 400m @ 20sec rest
16 x 25m @ 10sec rest
200m CD
Total = 2100m
I cut out a set of "8 x 50m drills" due to time. Those take so stinkin long.

Run: 06:30am, 00:31:37, 2.82 miles
Jon's girlfriend, Jessica, joined me for the run this morning. I had a really great time. "Great" and "run" are rarely used in the same discussion for me, so this made me happy.


Too many margaritas and too little sleep last night. Ugh.

Bike: 7:30pm, 00:30:00, 6.81 miles
High rpm session on the trainer. Keeping it above 100rpm is really difficult, but I kept it above 95rpm for most of the time.

Monday, May 4, 2009

End of Week 1

The first week of training is done and I feel fantastic! The plan called for 6 hours (2hr swimming, 2hr biking, and 2hr running), but with the Ride Around Clark County my hours bumped up to 11. No aches, pains, creaks, or complaints so far!

The Stats:
Swim - 2.11 hours (5500 meters)
Bike - 6.57 hours (92.83 miles)
Run (mostly walking this week) - 2.28 hours (9.67 miles)
Other - 0.03 hours
TOTAL = 11.00 hours

Weight/Body Progress:

Weight - no change
Stomach - no change
Hips - no change
Thigh - down 0.25"
Bicep - no change

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Day 7

On tap for the day was a 45min Z2 run. I decided to swim a bit with Jon, a fellow IMAZer this year. Well, I didn't really swim with him, but in one lane over... Then Nadine met me for a run/walk. It was a great recovery day after RACC.

Swim: 11:15am, 00:17:00, 800 meters
I just swam and rested and chit-chatted as I felt like it. No plan.

Run: 12:00pm, 00:48:11, 3.55 miles

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Ride Around Clark County - 65 Miler

Location: begins and ends at Clark College in Vancouver, WA. Heads east to Camas, up north and then west through beautiful farmland and quiet neighborhoods of Hockinson, Battleground, Ridgefield, and Felida. Then back south to Vancouver.
Distance: 65 miles
Time: 04:45:00 (just under 14mph pace)

My friend Jenn is training for the Livestrong Ride in Seattle next month (a century ride to raise money and awareness in the fight against cancer...drop into the link and donate a few dollars to the cause if you are able). We've been riding together for a few weeks, but our long Saturday rides have been derailed by tired legs and/or rainy weather. We really needed to get the full 65 miles in today. Imagine our disappointment when it began POURING rain last night. The alarm went off around 5am and the rain was still coming down. I could hear puddles splashing every time a car drove by outside the house. The gutters were dripping. The vents were rattling. Ugh.

After some texts, we decided we still wanted to ride. At least start out and see how we ended up feeling. 15 miles into it, we diverted to the gym to get Nadine. Then off around Lacamas Lake and onto the main rest stop at Day Break park in Battleground. The rain kept coming, but it was more of a drizzle and the air temps weren't too cold. By the time we got to the stop, the rain was gone and the sun was trying to peek out from the clouds. It turned into a gorgeous day with really awesome scenery and good friends. Times like these that make life incredible.
(Photo 1 = Jenn & Nadine at Day Break Park rest stop; Photo 2 = me after Felida hill)

I don't need to go into detail about the hills in Felida. If you've been there, you know they suck. But they weren't as bad as last year. And everyone was smiling and laughing, which made it seem not so terrible. Time flew and pretty soon we were rolling into Vancouver and hanging out on the porch with post-ride beverages (mmmm...IPA...). Fantastic day!

(Photo 1: Jenn at my place enjoying a hard-earned recovery drink; Photo 2: me also enjoying a lovely recovery beverage -- the goofy face is because I thought Jenn's pants fell down, but it was just her jacket falling off her waist)

Couple of other notes:
We played a couple of games that I pulled from my Don Fink book --
*every time someone said something negative about themselves, they had to then say something positive outloud...5 times.
*each time we complained, we then had to say something that we are thankful for.

This put a positive spin on the day and I only got caught once! To continue with the good vibes, for the last 20 miles we each said something that we liked in life every time we hit another mile. Some of what we came up with (in no particular order): Mathew McConaughey, peanut M&Ms, good hair days, cute shoes, pasta, our families, the first cup of coffee in the morning, bloody marys. I also spent each mile thinking of someone I know who has battled or is battling cancer. I got this idea from Jenn. And when I ran out of names, I thought about people who have been affected by other illnesses, injuries, or who for various reasons are not fortunate enough to be doing what we take for granted each day. So, yeah, today was a good day.

Day 5
Not much to say here. I ate pretty clean today. I'm tired from the TT.

Instead of a 30min Z2 run, I went for a 45min Z2 walk with Ken. We walked the same loop that I would have ran. I thought it best to save my legs for the 65 miler tomorrow.