Wednesday, July 14, 2010

2010 Goals - Progress Report

I have been delaying this post because I am nowhere close to meeting most of my goals this year.  It's been a whirlwind of events, busy work schedule, two stress fractures, and so on and so on.  You know, life.

The original plan:
Swim - 250,000 meters
Bike - 4000 miles
Run - 900 miles

What I've done so far:
Swim - 18,016 meters
Bike - 901 miles
Run - 331 miles

Eek.  The swimming is a lost cause.  My swim mojo left town long ago, and I have yet to lure it back.  I could set a new swimming goal, but I'm not going to.  Because I have no interest in forcing myself to do something that I currently detest.  The biking mileage is on the pathetic side, but it's recoverable.  I likely won't hit 4000 miles, but I think with some determination I can come close to last years distance.  I'm actually proud of the running total.  It may look small to many of you, but with two major injuries, this isn't so bad.  It's only a couple hundred short 2009 overall.  And I have at least 2 half marathons, 1 marathon, and 1 ultramarathon left this year.  And a half ironman.
Oh yes, a half ironman.  On Sunday.  If I can get through the swim, then the biggest hurdle of the day will be cleared.  The next big hurdle will be getting to the finish line in under 8 hours.  It's going to be a painful day, but as long as I can go buy the awesome Vineman jersey afterwards, then my goal for the day will be met.  The real reason I'm going down to California -- wine tasting and to pick up my 6 cases of wine that are waiting for me.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

New Gear

The solution to undertraining?  Buy new gear!  Here are some of my new training faves and first impressions.  Full reviews will be written after more rigorous testing.

Shimano Tri Shoes
These aren't actually a new purchase, but rather a result of lazy unmotivation.  They have been sitting in the box in our spin room since December.  So stupid, because after a few rides, I really like them.  Roomy, airy, and most importantly, they smell 1000% better than the old ones (which have often been banned from the house).  I hate the color (shiny white/green, ick) and my feet slide forward when standing to climb.  But since they don't stink, and buying a new pair may take me another 7 months of procrastination, I'll make do.

Cobb Saddles
Saddle #3 just hasn't been doing it for me lately.  Actually, it's been heading towards the junk pile since last November when I ended up with a 2-inch saddle sore after Ironman.  I keep hoping it will become comfortable again, but no.  If a saddle causes pain and injury so severe, that scars are still present 8 months later, it's time to try something else.  After seeing some posts on triathlon forums, adverts in race packets, and mounted on the bikes of pros at a couple of races, I decided to call Cobb Cycling and see if they had something they could recommend.  Oh my, they are AWESOME!  I'll save details for a full review, but I wish I could fly down to Texas and hug them.

I actually received two saddles in the mail: the V-Flow Plus and V-Flow Max.  Each saddle comes with a tool kit, helpful tips, and a DIY video.  Within 5 minutes the Plus was perfectly adjusted on the Cervelo.  My first test ride was a quick hop on the trainer at 9:30pm after a long day at work.  I climbed on, fully expecting to hate it.  After 30 minutes in aero position without any adjustments, it felt like I was riding on a cloud.  I seriously could barely feel where my body met the saddle.  I tried not to get too happy until I was able to take it out on the road, but really, I was about to burst with excitement!

The following night I jumped on the trainer for a measly 20 minutes, just to verify that I wasn't imagining things from the previous night.  Awwww, pure comfort.  But the real test was the 7:30am hangover ride (courtesy of Laura's Ironman party, thanks girlfriend!) this past Saturday morning.  Three days in a row of riding, raging nausea, piss-poor attitude, and a bit more mileage.   The end result = love!  After Vineman 70.3 this coming weekend, I'll swap out and give the Max a test ride and see which one I'm going to end up with.

Luna Sandals
My Luna sandals finally arrived in the mail!  I've been alternating between racing flats, vibram five fingers, and totally barefoot since last December.  I have been eyeing the do-it-yourself sandal kits from Barefoot Ted, which are modeled after the traditional Raramuri huaraches.  But he recently came out with the Luna Sandal company, and I was lucky enough to get my hands on the production model as soon as they started shipping.  They arrive in the mail like this:
Less than five minutes after watching a quick video on different tying techniques, voila:
I couldn't help but take them for a test run immediately.  The plan was to go for a short 1-2 mile run.  Almost 6 miles later, I reluctantly returned home.  Aside from a small blister between my right toes and a little heat on the balls of my feet, I had no pain.  I think these can be resolved with a little body glide.  If the blister is healed by Sunday, there is a good chance that these will be sitting in T2 waiting for a 13-mile trial run.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Awesomeness on a Monday

Mondays are always rough.  Especially when they are coupled with being sick, PMS, and 80+ unanswered emails from the weekend.  Oh, and my thoughts were completely preoccupied with a half ironman in 6 days that I sort of didn't train for.  But you know what makes it easier to swallow?

No no no, that's not what you think it is.  Unless you thought it was a really cool bottle of tequila.  Seriously!  Even better?  The name of it is "AsomBroso".  Awesomeness just seems to keep crossing my path lately.  And even better?
No, I'm not an alcoholic.  (If you have drank with me recently, then you know that I actually very rarely drink and therefore am quite entertaining after only 1 beverage.)  A coworker friend of mine recently made a booze-run to Nevada and let me place a special order before he left.  This will probably keep us tied over for the next several years.

And the best end to my crappy-Monday-turned-awesome-Monday?  A fantastic run in my new running sandals (blog post on that to come soon) and a yummy salmon dinner cooked by The Hubs.  And now off to an early bedtime...

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Fun In Idaho

There were so many great moments while spectating at IMCdA, I can't not do another post about it.  Here are some of the highlights that we managed to capture.

Julie and I leaving Camas, all set to go with our 'ho hats.

Making inspiration signs on Ironman eve.

Taking a break from our ride for a dip in the lake.

Jeff, aka Hoosee, waiting patiently for three girls to get ready.

At Coeur d'Alene Brewery.

Raising our hands for total awesomeness.  And then being even more awesome while practicing cheering at the finish line.  And then getting kicked out.  But making the guard take our picture first.

Spectating is hard work.  Beer break!

Cheering on the hottie pros on the run.  But they didn't compare at all to the 13-14 hour hotties.

Monday, July 5, 2010

More on Perspective

Balance.  I've never been good at it.  Yes, I can take on a multitude of responsibilities, juggle oodles of events, and book my calendar up to the gills.  But that's not balance.  That's frantically running from one end of the teeter-totter to the other with my arms full and trying not to drop anything or fall off the beam.  And some things do get dropped.  And sometimes I fall off the beam flat on my face.  I don't spend enough quality time with my husband.  My well-intentioned training plans get backed up by half-assed execution and my race performances have been lacking.  I successfully lose weight and then unsuccessfully gain most of it back.  I cancel plans because I'm triple-booked.  My flower and veggie gardens die.  I end up overwhelmed, sick, and burned out.  Not healthy.

So starting now, I will be changing things that don't contribute to my overall well-being.  From the big things: eliminating fast food filled with salt and saturated fats, consuming alcohol only in very limited quantities, and getting enough sleep.  To the small things: turning off the television and computer more often, keeping caffeine to a cup or two a day, and actually taking a break or two during the work day.  As well as the really difficult things: letting go of people who bring me down and suck away all of the good energy, saying no to social events when I'm exhausted, and learning a little bit about the word "moderation".