Sunday, May 25, 2008

Week of 5/19-5/25 Workouts!

5/19/08: 1 hour swim
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm
Notes: Didn't get a chance to get in my normal 3mile run/1 hour swim brick today, but I am okay with that. After the weekend's activities, my legs felt tired and a little heavy. It felt good to take it easy today:)

5/19/08: 1 hour swim and 3 mile run Brick
total running: about 30 mins
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm
Notes: Felt like I had to get back to the grind today with my workouts. Although this is going to be my only other workout this week, I pushed myself on the run and in the pool. Felt good and it will feel good to take this week easy.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Week of 5/12-5/18 Workouts!

5/12/08: Brick--3M Run and 1 Hour Swim and thinking...

total running: 27 minutes or so
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: cool
Notes: Today was unbelieveably cool, which was a nice change of pace. Of course, this meant that the pool would be cool too. It was a good brick though. I am finally feeling better in the pool. I just need to get swimming more now that I am getting a literal 'good feel' of the water.

Also, i started keeping a food diary. Although I won't be posting it here, I must say I am very happy with my diet since my terrible bought with my sinus infection a little over a month ago. The areas where I am seeing some great consistency and improvements are in my lunches (I always have protein and veggies) and dinner (usually carbs, but always a smalllll meal since I learned not to eat late anymore). Usually I eat 1/2 pita with hummus and some soy milk.

This means two things, I am getting healthier (although I still have a undenying affinity for drinking and *ahem* chocolate or salty snacks. I am gonna blame the Striders for that;)) and that I am actually losing weight! Roughly May 2006 I was sitting at 148. Now, I am happy to report that I am at a healthy 136! More importantly I am losing pant and dress sizes (at least one size on both ends) so I am willing to bet I can buy some new clothes after the summer! My overall weight goal is to stay at 130 year-around. I don't know easy this is going to be during marathon season (tend to eat more, especially carbs) but 130 has been a goal for so long and I am ALMOST there!

I bet I can get there by September 1st! If I can do it...I think I am going to treat myself to a few new cute outfits and new race wheels for my bike! Help keep me accoutable! :)

5/13/08: 3.5 Mile Neighborhood Run
total running: 33:34
ave 9:35/mile
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: humid
Notes: Although the goal was to run 6 miles today (it sure has been a while since I have done 6 as a training run) I had to cut the run short since I had band practice. Ah well. It was a nice run since I did my usual neighborhood route and varied it up with an additional .5 miles of hillwork.

5/14/08: 3 Mile Run and 1 Hour Swim Brick
total runing: ?
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm
Notes: Nothing memorable about this run...was my best swim to date though. I have great confidence going into my tri on Sunday. The only thing I am regretting though is not getting in at least one open water swim.

5/15/08: 15 Mile Bike Ride
ave speed: 15 mph
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm
Notes: I ended up riding by myself today but that was okay because I was able to really push myself. I still regret not riding long this past weekend (was suppose to be 46 miles!) but that's okay. On the actual Veloway I pushed really hard, riding in my aerobars at least 75% of the time, and hammering the downhills as well as the uphills. Then I felt so good I rode down South Mopac for an additional 9 miles. I actually felt really good on that and wanted to do another 3 miles, but decided that 15 miles was a decent ride considering my race Sunday is only 11.1.

Off to the races! Good luck to all this weekend...I will be completing my own 'Jon Walk' style triple:)!

5/17/08: Congress Ave Mile-a new PR!
(read about in a seperate race report)

5/17/08: Lone Star 5000-a new PR!
(read about in a seperate race report)

5/18/08: Skeese Women's Sprint Tri
(read about in a seperate race report)

Total workouts for the week:
5 Runs, 3 Swims, 2 Bikes (awesome!)

(The pic below is what three races of stuff looks like!)

RACE REPORT: Skeese Greets Women’s Tri!
First Tri of the Season-Not bad!

I think it's almost comical that I can bomb a swim portion of a tri and still finish 20th out of 70-odd women in my age-group. However, that being said, had I had a good swim today, I could have possibly been in that illusive top-10 bracket. More later...but time to rest off a good bike and a great run:)


I was so excited about this race as I got up this morning. I have been training ‘relatively’ hard for it the last few months, and I was ready to compete hard and prove to the world I am ready to take on the Austin Tri Scene! :) haha. Turns out that New Bransfuels though was further away than I originally thought. I barely got to the race site with a much time to prep and set up my transition area. It was a ‘every women for herself’ situation. I luckily found a ‘kinda’ space near a huge mylar balloon and very close to the bike exit. One thing that did bother me is people do not know how to set up their transition areas with their bikes, but I guess when it’s a free-for-all, what do you expect?

The swim looked daunting (even for an out and back) and I was in the first wave. Not sure how many women were in the wave, but at least 100. I situated myself in the front, just as Coach Chrissie advised. The second I got in that cold water though and put my face in that disgusting water, I knew the swim would be tough. The gun went off and immediately I got swam over, punched and kicked. Nothing too bad, but it took me a while to feel ‘comfortable.’ I pretty much struggled the first 150 meters along with a few other poor souls. The water was sooo gross, you really have no idea. Almost black (no visability at all), stinky, and ‘things’ were floating in it. By far the worst swim I have EVER EVER EVER done. At the 200 meter marked I got passed by the next wave’s swimmers, oh well.

I managed to struggle in the water for about 10 minutes, only free-styling about half of that. Ughh. I felt right then that I just wasted all that money on my swim program and that I will never amount to anything in triathlons if I can’t handle a ‘short and simple’ swim. Pretty defeating self-talk. But, I’m not a quitter. I shook it off, commented to a spectator about gross water and I ran out to the bike racks, found my Baby Blue and knew I was going to have to pound this bike portion.

I was in a huge group of women going out on their bikes. Pretty much the whole field of competition from 30-39. I immediately pounded and tried to get away from them. Great motivation. The first portion of the bike is kind of scary though since you are riding on the I-35 feeder road and they recently repaved it so it’s pretty bumpy. Ughh. I passed a lot of people though. The first hill got me a little but I don’t think I got passed. I rode aero about 75% of the ride which not only was very comfty but allowed me to drink out of my Aerobottle and really hammer the straight-aways. I did get passed by the age 40+ leaders on their 4k aerobikes though but it happens.

The first part of the bike I averaged 17 mph and then the rolling hills started happening at mile 6 and they were totally kicking my ass. I got passed by a few girls on road bikes and someone on a hybrid bike and then decided to stop messing around and start to hammer the rest of the ride. I picked up the pace, almost drafting off a few gals (there were some really narrow portions of the ride…so it was almost impossible to not draft, to be honest with you). The last 2 miles were downhill and I hit 30+ mph, which helped me complete an average 16.5 mph bike split. Not great, but considering I passed a lot of people on the bike, I wasn’t disappointed with my pace. Plus my legs felt good.

The run! I was so eager to do it and my legs were shot from my two races yesterday and the hammering on the bike hills. Nevertheless, I ran as hard as I could. 8:03 for the first mile and 7:45 for the second (I just wanted to finish!) I did feel really good finishing this race though, I think this is the first tri I have done thus far where ‘overall’ I felt like I had good energy, drive and push the entire race. I need to figure out this swim thing…and if so, maybe I can place in the top 10 in my age group one day! The other positive though is that my transition times are improving with makes me feel good, although I need to continue to bring down those numbers too.

Congrats to all the first-timers (I was the crazy girl in the purple visor cheering everyone on at the finish)! You ladies inspired me with your energy, drive and desire. You ladies help me realize why I love this sport so much! Don’t ever forget if you aren’t having fun while competing, it’s not worth doing!

300m swim, 11.1 mile bike, 2 mile run
1:12.34 total

20th in 25-29 age group (out of 72)

10:46s (70th)
2:06 T1
42:27b (16th)
1:23 T2
15:50r (5th)

Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: nice.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

RACE REPORT: Lone Star 5000!

So I should mention that this race wasn’t chip timed. And that we were racing at 10:30am. Already two strikes against me going for that elusive 5k PR. Then add to the fact I just ran a I really tough mile and PR’ed. Well…challenges. I needed to get over all that quickly.

It was hot. I was wearing all black. I was lined up about 2 seconds back from the front runners. The field couldn’t have been larger then 300 runners. No one looked to be taking this seriously, so maybe this was going to be more of an interesting race than I thought. I did spot one other runner who was wearing two bibs like me (one under another). It felt good to be in the company of others as nutty as me.

The gun went off and off we went. I knew I would just have to pound this out. My legs felt remarkable well for what I did to them in the mile. I was able to run the first mile in 7:13. A little fast, but it felt really good. Mile 2 was the turnaround and I was so thirsty and missed the cups of water. And then we turned into the sun. I slowed down to 7:30. I was passing people like crazy still, but felt aweful for slowing down. The heat was getting to me.

Mile 3 I just bit my lip, put my head down and picked up my legs even more. We were all struggling at this point. I was running side by side by another triathlete and even drafted off another man for a little while. We rounded the corner and I saw 7:44 on my watch. This was it…I was going to PR! Just the straight-away to the finish! .47 seconds! I slowed down a lot here I felt, but I was pretty much giving everything I had left.

I crossed the finish and Ash saw me and was cheering for me. Turns out I was in the top 10 females to finish. Wow, this must have been a small race! I got a baseball hat as my prize and a smile, then a cupcake and an orange slice. Good stuff. Then we went to go eat afterwards and get me out of the sun. Overall, a great race. 23:16. Almost a minute PR over two years ago. Can’t wait to beat that one again though!

23:16 total

7:13, 7:30, 7:44, .47
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: hot. Maybe mid 80s?
RACE REPORT: Congress Mile!
TWO PR'S TODAY! A great day of racing!

6:42 in the mile (yes, my results came up with 'no age group' and 'no name') and unofficially 23:16 in the (HOT!) 5k! More later...but sleep and relaxing to commence!


This is quite possibly the strangest day of racing I have ever done in my life. A race in which there are 3 other events happening almost at the same time and same location. A 3 mile dog walk. A one mile charity walk, a one mile race (this one I am writing about) and the Congress 5000 (5k race immediately after this). It was absolutely nuts, the amount of people in a single-stretch of downtown bridge-area. Not to mention the fact my heat wasn’t even until 8:55am, which allowed me the opportunity to sleep in (but I didn’t, because who can really sleep in on race day?!)

I get there at normal race time (7am) after riding my bike the mile to get there. There is no one there, lol, and the first heat is at 8am. So I just try to either find a place to take a nap or get some caffeine. I actually found both, believe it or not. A couch under the Red Bull tent, and a cold Red Bull to sip while munching on a Clif Bar. I pretty much hung out and took in all of the sights and sounds that were going on at that time. Dogs EVERYWHERE (I mean, literally 5000+ dogs, you have no idea how loud it WASEN’T!), little kids and tons of high schoolers. Kids jogging strollers. It was almost a mad house.

My wave finally came up and I hoped that the Red Bull wasn’t going to adversely affect me. I have drank Monster before a race before and was fine. Red Bull..ehhh? It gives you wings, though, right? Well, it also makes you need to use the restroom! So I ran the mile with my bladder feeling full! However, I ran fine. Our wave was really small. (18 to 39). I think there were only 20 women in it. The first 200 meters were fast. I definitely wasn’t in the front of the pack. About 400 meters in I passed a few girls but slowed(?) into a “comfortable” pace. I was breathing hard.

600 meters to 1000 meters in were the only ‘technical’ parts of the course where we had to make some turns in order to head back on Congress (yes, they changed the course this year, so we didn’t ‘just’ run on Congress Ave.) 1200 meters in I started to throw down the hammer. There was a taller girl in my striking distance and I knew I could get her. 1400 meters in is just the straight away to the finish. At this point I told my legs to sprint and I don’t know that it happened. I heard another girl right behind me at this point. Ouch. Ouch. My breathing was fast but not sporadic.

I crossed the finish line in 6:42, good enough for 4th in my age group. The girl that passed me around 400 meters in beat me and finished her mile at about 6:30. That’s okay. I’ll take 6:42 today considering I haven’t been doing speed work. It’s still a 15 second PR for me, and a PR is a PR!

Now onwards to my next race today:)

1 mile

Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: cool and overcast

Saturday, May 10, 2008

RACE REPORT: Jackrabbit Run 4 Hope 10k!
…a PR, but barely!

A PR is a PR…that’s all I have to remember. It sure wasn’t pretty though. The weather was unbelievably humid. I mean…close to 100% humidity. The temperature was probably mid 80’s, but that didn’t matter. We were swimming through that air, and that’s all I have to say about that…

I mentally had a tough time preparing for this race. Honestly, it’s a tricky course. A first mile gradual uphill climb. Then a second mile 150 foot climb (in two sections…but tough!) Then 3 miles of VERY flat but curvy neighborhood roads. With a turn-around. Not easy, because you see the runners that are in front of you finishing the race. Ughh. Then the fun mile 6 downhill. TOUGH. You have to control your legs running downhill or else…Then the last .5 mile or so is a slight uphill to the finish after just beating my quads to death. Nice.

I thought about halfway through the race ‘there goes my PR.’ I kept passing people though, which gave me a little confidence. Pretty much after the first mile I don’t think I got passed at all, except right at the very end…But right at the turn-around before mile 4, I just felt BAD. Morally I was beat because I didn’t remember a turn-around last time I did this race. Then there was the fact that I was pushing harder then I had planned to and was feeling defeated physically because the humidity.

I saw my dad right before mile 6 and gave him a thumbs up. I don’t remember what he said to me as I had my headphones on but I just put my head down and went for it. I passed a guy who was struggling and when his friends saw me pass him, they started giving him a hard time. In turn, he sped up and I gave chase. I had to remind myself to run my own race though…

I finished strong though and my eyes were glued to that timing clock. Could I have PR’ed? I was close…was I one of the first women to finish? I couldn’t tell, but didn’t see anyone in front of me…After walking off the pain, I went to look for something sharp to use to cut my chip off my shoe. I saw the placings then…5th overall female. 3rd in my age group. 3rd?!!!!! It looks like the two women that beat me were my age.

After sticking around FOREVER for our portion of the awards ceremony (like probably an hour later!) we went up there to get our medals. The women that beat me were amazingly in shape and very nice women. The girl that placed first was wearing a Boston singlet, so I guess I have nothing to complain about:)

A good race overall, looking forward to beating 50 minutes someday…just wasn’t in the cards today. Next time!

6.2 miles

ave 8:14/mile
50:54 total running

8:00, 9:11, 7:58,
8:35, 8:33, 7:13, 1:20
Week of 5/5-5/11 Workouts!

5/5/08: Brick--3M Run and 1 Hour Swim
total running: 28 minutes or so
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: humid
Notes: My elbow is pretty sore after my little tumble on Saturday. (not to mention my black bruise!) However, I taped my elbow up pretty good and was able to swim with no ill affects.

5/6/08: 6.5 Mile HOT run!
total running: about 1:03 or so
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm and VERY humid
Notes: Met up with SoCo Matthew at 6pm on a very WARM day. I actually ran the 1.5 miles to the Lake, which was nice because it’s always nice to feel nice and warmed up before a potentially tough run. Originally the plan was to run only 4 miles or so, but it turned into an additional 1 mile since there was some construction going on (as usual) where we would normally turn around. So I ran a total a total of 6.5 miles and had Matt drop me off since there was no way I was going to run another 1.5 miles, especially when it was probably 95 degrees.

5/7/08: Brick--3M Run and 1 Hour Swim
total runing: about 25 minutes
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm
Notes: I pushed on the run despite being a little tired from yesterday’s efforts. Decided that my shoes HAVE to go (they probably have about 430 miles on them…yikes!!!) so I am eager to break in a new pair:) I got some good advice during the swim which I really feel is starting to make a difference in my form. Finally feel like I am becoming a better swimmer! The plan for the rest of the week is going to be different this week since I am going out of town to run the JackRabbit 10k. I am going out of town tomorrow, with plans to maybe get in an easy run before going for a PR on Saturday!

Have a good weekend of racing!

5/10/08: Jackrabbit Run 4 Hope 10k! A NEW PR!
(read about it in a separate race report!)

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Week of 4/28-5/4 Workouts!

4/28/08: Brick--3M Run and 1 Hour Swim
total running: 28 minutes or so
Heart-rate: n/aWeather: humid
Notes: I was pretty tired today for some reason. My legs just had no get-up and go! I still made it through the work-outs though with a smile on my face.

4/30/08: Brick—3M Run and 1 Hour Swim
total running: about 27 mins.
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warm
Notes: I decided today that combat the ‘tired leg feeling’ and take have a Carbboom before my run and half a Carbboom before the swim. It helped, but my legs still felt ‘dead’ on the swim. I am starting to wonder if maybe my shoes are past their point of being tooooo broken in?

5/2/08: 4 mile run, soooo hot!
total runing: about 40 minutes
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: very humid and hot!
Notes: So today marked another ‘benchmark’ workout that I like to claim ‘makes me tougher,' at my favorite Coach Steeeeeeeeve-ism, 'tough, but doable.' So it’s 90 degrees and 6pm. Sure, a perfect time to get in a run:) Ughh, not really. I probably walked twice during this run. I guess in my defense though, I was running through a pretty hilly neighborhood. Note to self: don’t forget water bottle on next 6pm run. Yikes.

Tomorrow and Sunday will be two bike rides for a total of about 50 miles. I am very excited as it is part of a small tour, so we actually get to ride to the location, camp out, and ride back! Details soon! Should be fun!

5/3/08: 25 Mile Bike Ride out to Manor, TX
total riding: about 2 hours
ave. 13 mph
top 29 mph!
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: decent, sunny but not hot (at noon)
Notes: So my cycling friend Harriett and I decided to do the group ride out to Manor. Other then meeting at noon to ride (but, the weather was nice and almost cool!), day one of cycling was turning out to be great. We were in a group of various ability-level cyclists. Most people were riding modified road bikes/tour bikes and no helmets. Not exactly the safest thing, but at least everyone had a map, and had resolved to stay together. I knew Harriett and I would be at the front of the pack, well mostly. The first 8 miles out of town were slow and leisurely. The traffic at some points really scared me because it was pretty heavy. However, being in the large group made me feel safer--it was so empowering riding in such a large group!

The ride itself was just absolutely gorgeous. The countryside here is so beautiful…miles upon miles of beautiful land. And no chasing dogs! Some great and crazy hills, ala the Creedmoor Cruise, but for the most part, a nice ride. Did get in my aerobars a few time and made up some time then. Didn’t really go faster than 18 mph, but I’ll take that today. The only bad thing about the ride is that I made the mistake of riding my road bike over gravel…DOWNHILL! At the end of the ride…and took a nasty spill! Luckily, I know how to fall and was able to unclip on the left side. So I fell on my right side, caught the ground with my glove, my thigh (ouch-the bruise is out of control!) and my elbow (ripped it up pretty good…) That made for a uncomfortable night of camping…more on day 2…

5/4/08: 25 Mile Bike Ride back to Austin!
total riding: about 2 hours
ave. 14 mph
top 31 mph!
Heart-rate: n/a
Weather: warmer then yesterday
Notes: My elbow got cleaned up well (still sore though!) and my thigh got pretty swollen and black…which meant no aerobars on the way back:( After a good breakfast though (made the mistake of not eating much yesterday, and paid for it with tired legs!) I was ready to ride by 10am. I didn’t get much sleep but that didn’t matter. Too bad we didn’t leave until almost noon though, and the worst part about that today is that it was actually pretty warm.

The ride back was fine, Harriett and I didn’t really wait on the group, so we aggressively (well, I TRIED) attacked the hills and rode pretty hard back. My cadence was much better today and I felt much more confident on the route (just a reverse of that we did yesterday). I wasn’t too sore either after yesterday. Another good thing about where we cycled is that we actually did some of the Danskin route, so that is really going to help me out in a few weeks…yes, ladies, it is a tough bike.

Overall, it was a great weekend of riding. I’m not overally impressed with mph’s but I am proud of myself for riding 50 HILLY miles in 24 hours. Gives me a little taste of what the MS150 will be like next year:) (muahh-haha, yes, I am doing it next year, with the Tough Cookies!) Back to running now…where I KNOW I can aggressively hit the hills!