Monday, September 18, 2017

Baby pics

Tri the Illini Race Report

I was sitting on a couch a month ago while A was sleeping and I felt like I needed to do some races. Now! And that's how I ended up racing 2 sprints the last two weekends.

This race was in Champign, IL organized by University of Illinois and it is a 2h15m drive. In an effort to save some money we decided to drive up in the morning which meant getting up at 3 to allow enough time for 1 feeding before we hit the road and a feeding and pumping before the start. Goid thing A is an efficient eater and always gets done to business and is done in 15-20min!

After last weekend's tri I felt like a pro packing which turned out to lead to underpacking....I didnt bring anything to keep me warm in the morning and I didnt bring a swim cap. I didnt realize that they do not give you swim caps in races that have swims in a pool. But it makes sense because they dont need to have different swim caps colours to distinguish waves. Thankfully some friends from work were racing and one had an extra cap. So I was sporting South Africa championship cap with some south african beach sand in it for good luck:)

Pre race was uneventfull, as uneventfull as it can be with a 10 week old baby that needs to be fed and breasts that need to be emptied...... I didnt have time to warm up at all because no matter how much extra time I thought I had, it was somehow spend on things other than warm up. I need to remember this for next year when I am actually racing.

Swim: 300m zig-zag style in an outdoor 50m pool. I have never done swim like that and I didnt like it because I was stuck behind people, other people were stuck behind me and I was slow! 6:30, which is really slow and I was disappointed. I cannot blame it entirely on the swim format but I am sure it contributed to it.

Long run to transition, put my socks, shoes, helmet, race belt on, check with Nathan on baby status (sleeping in babybjorn)...I am not breaking records in transitions and even Nathan told me I need to be faster:) I know, I know. Next year.

Bike: 14 miles. I biked 43:30, which was slower than last week but I know that no two triathlons are comparable so it is ok. I felt little slower than last week, probably because there were some inclines and I dont do those well. I need to start working on my climbing for Madison 70.3!!! Flats and downhills no problem though. I mentally stayed in the game the whole time, being focused and only positive talk.

Transition was not that great again....

Run: 5k around U of I campus. I felt good, stronger than last week, ran 24:45, so faster than last week. I realize that I take these tiny little steps, which leads to shuffling rather than running and I need to open my stride and run! But it hurts when I run! I need to work on being ok with being uncomfortable. One girl passed me (dang it!), but then I passed her back, she passed me again and then I passed her back for good at around 1.5miles. But another girl passed me and she was not running super fast but faster than me and for a second I contempkated trying t stay with her but then I did not..... I need to work on my racing game.
With about 400m to go a girl came up by me. I was like what? Where did you come from? And she looked good and fresh! I stayed with her for 50m and then we got to the intersection and I went right and she went left! She was not in the race. She was just someone out for a Sunday jog:))) It was a relief, I had to interest in sprint finish!

I ended up 3rd in my age group. I cant find results so dont know how many people were in my age group but they said the race had over 400 people! That's quite a lot. It is probably a season closer (is that a word? Since season opener is a word) for many.

Overall I am happy again with how I am progressing. I am glad my body is doing well, adjusting to training and allowing me to have fun!
These two races allowed me to see where the biggest gaps are (bike climbing, transitions) that I need to really work on.

Up next is just training, training, training and more training with a few 5k with Nathan thrown in.

In other news, Nathan took Alex to visit his mom on Saturday afternoon and although I love them both I was so excited they were both gone! I was finally able to vacuum the whole house, organize A closet and my closet and clean the living room. It was awesome!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Attempt #2 at mile repeats

I failed my 3x1 mile workout last week so I gave it another try today. I did it in the morning on TM while A was still sleeping so it was way less stressful than last week! I took yesterday off to recover from my Sunday effort (haha!) and was ready to get back at it today but I was dreading it! I went back and forth betweek doing mile repeats today and bike intervals tomorrow and bike today and run tomorrow just to give me one more day without that mile repeat workout. But my BOB car seat adapter is arriving today (I bought BOB Ironman stroller off craigslist on Sunday for a great price) and I will not be able to test it till tomorrow and if I did run intervals tomorrow I would have to wait until Thursday to test it (because no double runs for me yet, I am worried about injury) but if I did bike tomorrow I can run with BOB later that day. So yeah, at the end I sucked it up and did mile repeats today.
Rationally I should not be worried because I knew I should be able to do them no problem but I was still nervous.
And really, I did them no problem. 3x1 mile at 8' pace at 0 incline with 4' walk btw 1 and 2, and 3' walk btw 2 and 3.
Half mile into the first one I could tell my legs felt tired and I started getting worried about two more but it was probably only in my head because I had no problem finishing the 1st one and then 2 more.
I was briefly contemplating doing one more repeat but then decided not to. Next week.

I would like to get to 4 miles of intervals at 8' pace in the next 2 weeks (3.5 miles next week and 4 the week after) and then keep 3-4 miles but start dropping the pace.

I am thinking that I will continue doing faster intervals and hill intervals once a week through November in order to get stronger and then take Dec and Jan to build some base and then start again with intervals in Feb to get some speed into the legs for HIM in June. I will not have many hours to train with baby and a new job starting Nov 1 so I need to make every session count!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Litchfield Sprint Triathlon RR

It was awesome to be out there and racing again!!! I am so happy I did it.
I went in with zero expectations, just do a triathlon and enjoy being out there.

First challenge came when deciding what to wear since I am 40 pounds over the weight I was when all my tri cloths were bought. But surprising I was able to squeeze into my old trisuit although I looked like a sausage. Sigh...Swim was wetsuit legal but there was no way I could put on my i just somehow squeezed into my swimskin to stay warmer. That made me look even more like a sausage.
Next challenge was logistics. I totally forgot that I would have to nurse and pump before the start until Nathan reminded me to allocate extra time for that:) I usually do not stress too much about race prep and I did not this time but I can imagine that I would be super stressed if I cared about the race and about warming up or about being completely emptied before the start.

Drive was 1h50m so we got up at 4, I brushed my teeth, hanged diapers to dry, ete 2 english muffins with peanut butter, nursed the baby and we were off by 4:45. Thankfully A went to bed at 9pm and didnt wake up until I woke her up to eat. Goooooood baby.
The race had sprint, oly and half so quiet a lot of people racing (~70 in half, 110 in Oly and 130 in spri t) but they were super organized with parking so no issue there.
I racked my bike, set up my shoes etc in transition, nursed A and pumped but didnt have time to get all of milk out but I figured it will be fine since my trisuit was so tight that it was going to provide more than enough support:))

Swim: 0.3 mile. All sprint racing people started together and it was a beach start. I have not swam since mid-June and even before I swam 3 times in 6 months or so. But that was not really an issue I think. I just was not aggressive enough. Normally I am not scared to get punched or kicked but this time I was scared to get punched so when I found myself near someone huge I would stop and let me get ahead. And that happened a lot in the first 0.1 miles since it was crowded! I swam right around 11min and I did not look behind me but I was sure I was somewhere towards the end.

T1: Then quite a long run to transition, up the stairs and to my bike. It was very easy to spot it because Nathan was standing by my row and he was carrying A in a baby bjorn and she was wearing very bright red PJs and I was bright little arms and legs to know where to go. I took my sweet time because I was not racing, I was participating. Nathan told me with a surprised face that he only saw a few women go by. I did not really believe him. I was in that transition for 2.5min. The fastest transition was 46sec by some guy, so you can see that I was in no hurry. I put my bike shoes on and tip toed out of there.

Bike: 14 miles and it took me somewhere around 40min, with 19.2 mph. Nothing to write home about but I will take it. Now that I think about it, this was the 2nd time I was riding my P3 outside, ever. The first time was the day before to make sure I still know how to do it. I thought I was going at a good clip and I was passing quite a lot of people early on. That was because I was far behind and it is always easy to pass people when there is a lot of them in front of you. Nice confidence booster:)  At one point I pass a gal and then jumped onto my wheel. Grrr. I did not say anything but in the next turn I accelerated out of the turn in order to loose her and I did although she stayed close behind.

T2: I was looking for my bright PJ'd baby but did not see them anywhere.My T2 was way better than T1, although it did not matter at all. I will get to it in a second. Rack the bike, helmet off, shoes on and out.

Run: We started into a pretty big 1/4mile uphill. We also biked that way but it did not seem that steep or long on a bike. I was taking tiny little steps and running at what felt like 20min miles. But I was not running that slowly, I was reeling some people in. I passed two gals in the first mile and I saw 8:30ish at the first mile marker. Wow, I have not run 9 in training runs yet (other then in intervals). Also 2nd mile was in that range! Sweet. I was moving way faster than I expected. I expected 10min miles because that's what I do in my easy runs in training. My final time was 26ish minute, so 8:20 avearge. Again, nowhere near where I used to run but faster than expected. And I crossed the line the 3rd female.

Nathan and A were waiting at the finish. A slept the whole time:) Tired baby.

So as I said I was very happy with the race. It went better than expected it would 9 weeks after having a baby and it was awesome to be out there swimming-biking-running!
I am doing one more race next Sunday. I hope it is also this much fun.

About the results. The event was organized very well, top notch. However, the last splits captured were the end of the bike. Nobody from sprint race had their T2 and run times. And therefore the standings after the bike are the official results...... Remember how I smoked T2 and passed 2 ladies on the run? Did not matter because the official results has me as 5th female. I asked the organizer about it and he said he knew results were wrong but that there is nothing he can do. They did not make any official announcement or explanation or apology for what happened. I do not feel they handled that very well and I think that they had a lot of complaints. Not that I care about the results but it is a principle.....if you mess up like that, you explain to people instead of let people find out when results are posted.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Week 1

Since my "official", or we can also call it less luckluster more scheduled, training started on Monday, let's see how it is going. Not very well I must admit.
I did an easy 4 miler on Monday night in a storm stopping by the house every mile because A was screaming her lungs out if she was not outside listening to evening sounds and I felt bad leaving Nathan with her alone. But they were fine.
Tuesday I decided to do 3x mile on a track. I love track and I was excited and confident but it turned out to be a big fat fail:( I was going to go there after Nathan comes from work and then he was going to meet me there to perform a baby hand over so he can go to his evening class. Well, he got home 20' later than expected, my wedding dress arrived so of course I had to try it and then I suddently had 40 min before he needed to go to his class and it is 20min drive to the track. I decided to still try it, speeding and pumping while driving.... My warm up was a 2.5min jogfrom the parking lot to the track and then started my first mile. 7:57, right where I wanted to be and it felt good. Then my stop watch died! My favorite watch!!!! I have had it for almost 18 years. I got it for my 15th birthday and I loved it! I am going to try to put a new battery in and see whether I can get a few more years out of it. Anyway, 2nd mile and I died. I dont know what pace I was running but I think it was 9+. And I only did 1200m and had to stop because Nathan arrived with the baby. I still had one mile to go and A was sleeping in her stroller so I figured I can run it since I will see her from anywhere on the track and I would be coming around every few minutes to check whether she is still sleeping. And yes, she slept right through it and also through a few strengthening exercises I did after. And that last mile? It was a dead march, probably 11 min pace. I almost cried! I know know why I fell apart. Maybe all the stress leading up to the workout?
Wednesday I did muscular endurance (big gear) ride on a trainer (5x6 min) and either my powermeter pedals are not calibrated or I should just forget this whole triathlon thing and start competitive eating instead....even on ME pieces my power was 90-95 watts. I am 99% sure it is the powermeter but there is still that 1% that makes me quite worried.
Thursday (today) was a beautiful day, sunny and cool so I decided today is the day. A's first stroller run. I bundled her up so she couldnt move, put her in her carseat and into stroller and off we went. That stroller was heavy! I take her for stroller walks daily but without the infant car seat and adding the car seat and all the blankets I used for padding added quite a weight. We did 4 miles and although it was super slow I was happy with it. She was happy too, slept right through it:) I think I will like running with her for my recovery runs and Nathan will run with her too so I am on look out for a BOB now. Stroller I have is great for walks since I can go with car seat or without and I can turn the stroller seat portion facing out or facing me and I like that variability but it is not great for faster running. I found one on craigslist in St Louis (1.5h drive) and I am going to look at it on Sunday since I will be in St Louis. Then I did 30min easy ride followed by 1mile off the bike at 10pm after A went to bed. Two workouts in a day! Go me!

And why will I be in St Louis on Sumday you ask? I am doing a sprint triathlon. It was an impulse sign up and I am sure I will regret it 25 yards into the swim....Plus, what to wear...what to wear? I am 40 pounds overweight (I havent lost any weight in the last 3 weeks! Very frustrating!) and none of my old tri clothes fit. I have 2 days to figure it out (although I doubt I can figure out wetsuit situation. Obviously I cannot fit into my wetsuit. I will just have to swim very very fast to get out of water asap. Btw, I have not swam for months.)
Oh, and I am doing another sprint triathlon following Sunday too. I am not sure what I was thinking last week signing up for all these races! Im excited to race but I think I will be frustrated with my slowness.

Alexa had her 2 month check up today and she is at 10lbs 10oz (7lbs 2oz at birth) which is 25 percentile and 22 1/4 inch (20inch at birth) which is 50 percentile. She was at 25 percentile for both at 6 week check up so she seems to be growing in height more then in weight. Well, I am 6' so she might take after me. And she got her shots. She cried to 1min and then she was her happy self again looking around and taking the world in.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Group ride

Oh wow, I havent done a ride with a group since last year March/April when I was in Arizona for training camp. I did a few group rides in winter but it was in my boss' basement on trainers so that hardly counts.

When I first came to this little town in southern Illinois I looked for people to train with but no such luck. I found a group of people that rode bikes but I was always training and doing soecific workouts or they were riding too slowly or they were riding like roadies with random attacks and I just did not enjoy it. So I did most of my training alone. 
Until last year when a few people from work dcided to do Hawaii 70.3 and then we had some new people at work come from overseas and they do triathlons so now there is a group of people to train with! Plus a bike shop opened in town and they organize rides. 

Last Saturday I was finally able to join the ride organized by the shop. There was 9 of us, 6 non-Americans (all from work!) and 3 Americans:) I LOVED it. It was awesome to be outside riding. We took a route I never took before and we were rolling at decent but comfortable pace for 1h15m (although once I get fitter it will be too slow).

Then a colleague asked me whether I want to join him and his wife for a ride on Sunday and as soon as we started I realized I might be in trouble because it was little too fast for me right now. I did not do any pulling, just sucking their wheels and trying not to get dropped for 32 miles. I almost managed...but I did get dropped the last 3 miles but they were nice enough to slow down and not leave me behind. I dont ever want to get dropped! Structured training started today and there is indeed a lot of work that needs to be done!

My baby is 2 months old today!!!!!!

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Running progress

after finishing my easy 1h ride at midnight, I dragged myself out of bed at 7 this morning to do my running intervals. I had to get it done before A woke up because we were going to St Louis in the afternoon to get the marriage licence. Woot woot!
I didnt feel stellar during the warm up and A was kind of fussing (I could hear her via baby monitor) and I was nervous she would wake up before I am done. But she slept right through it, and I even had time to make me a recovery drink and shower.
Anyway, the workout. I have been seeing improvements and after 400/800/1200/800/400 ladder last week I decided I need to try to run a mile at 8' pace And then I changed that to 2xmile. With 400 before and after. And I did it! I did 400 at 7:30 pace (felt great to open up my stride and run makes me sad to call 7:30 pace fast but it is what it is. My old coach told me not to worry about paces. Just run consistently and speed will come) and then a mile at 8' pace. I was struggling! But it was all mental. I wanted to quit, I wanted to cut it short but I knew it was all in my head. It was not too hard, my body was handling that pace well, there was no reason to quit!
The second mile went better, I used some tough love on me to help me stay strong.
And then I finished with 7:30 pace 400.

Overall, I am happy. Just 4-5 weeks ago I was struggling holding 8' pace for 4x400. Now I can do mile repeats at that pace. It is true, I just need to run consistently and speed will come. Plus these extra 45 pounds are not helping me be fast either:(
And the mental struggle? I havent done anything that pushed me for 9 months! It is normal that I lost the ability/willingmess to push through uncomfortable workouts. But i know that as I continue doing challenging workouts, the mental toughtness will come back.

Baby update

A is 8 weeks old and growing like a weed. I finally pulled the plug and bagged and put away A's newborn diapers. My baby is growing up. I could hardly fasten them anymore so it was time. I use cloth diapers and love them. Everyone that knows me would not be surprised that I am going cloth route. Disposable diapers create so much waste! I hate disposable things! I hardly ever use paper towels in the kitchen, just use a cloth towel and wash it! We had fight party on Saturday and Nathan's mom asked for a paper plate....just use a regular plate and wash it. I also got cloth wipes and not only I feel better about not creating waste but they work better. And to take cloth diapering/less waste way of doing things I am using diaper inserts that my mom used on me and my sister. And then my aunt on my two cousins. And there are even two inserts that my grandma used for my dad. (Things made in communist countries sure last longer than chinese crap we get now....) Yay for my family for not making diaper waste for over 30 years!

A smiles a lot. She sees me, she smiles. She sees Nathan, she smiles. I make a funny face, she smiles. We love it!

She is also trying very very hard to talk back to me but poor baby doesnt know how to use her vocal organs properly yet. She is going to be a talker.

She loves outdoors. And I mean loves it. She cries, you take her outside and all new sounds and smells and light contrasts make her stop and just look around completely mermetized. I love observing her.

She started sleeping 6-7h at night last week. She goes down anywhere between 10 and 11 and sleeps till 4 or 5. No complains from me. Although I would not mind if she went to sleep earlier, like at 8. That would give Nathan and I some time alone. And I could get done with my workout earlier. It is 11pm and I just started my bike workout:( (easy spin, so I spend it playing on my phone...real work starts next week)

She loves her baths. She is a happy baby sitting in the tub filled with warm water. I cannot wait to take her swimming.

My mom cannot wait to meet her. So far she only saw pictures and videos and camera calls and Oct 19 cannot come soon enough. That's when my mom comes and stays until the end of March. It is a win win. A does not need to go to daycare when she is still so small and my mom gets to spend lot of time with her first grandchild.

And that is it! She is awesome and we love her so much!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Hill repeats

My training for Madison 70.3 officially starts next week (I am not working with a coach as of now because I dont know how this whole new baby/new job/training for half-ironman thing works out snd I do not want to waste someone's time and spend money to prepare my workouts and then not be able to do them) but I have been some real running workouts the last month: some intervals (I almost died the first time I tried to hold 8' pace for 400m but it is getting better every week and I did 400,800,1200,800,400 last week and it felt pretty good! I am planning on doing a few mile repeats this week) and hills.
Today was hills day. Baby A slept from 10ish until 4am and I had to get it done before she woke up for a day since she doesnt nap long and I never know whether her nap will last 10 min (she loves her powernaps) or an hour so I cant get it really done during the day and Nathan has an evening class on Tuesdays.
I really did not want to go run outside because it was still dark and Nathan was sleeping so I did not want to leave without him knowing where I disappeared but then I remembered that I bought a treadmill for this reason. Plus he can sleep through anything so if A was to wake up she would be bawling without nobody comforting her. So off to treadmill taking baby monitor with me I went.
I decided on 6x2' with 1' rest at 10% incline and I think it was a good workout. I was naive and started to fast (10' pace) and had to lower the speed to 12' half way through the 1st interval if I wanted to finish that workout. Baby steps!
I also did little bit of weights afterwards (back, triceps and biceps) so I call it a productive morning!
By the time I was done with it (feeding the baby, pumping the rest, running, weights, recovery drink and shower) it was almost 8 and A woke up again to eat. She ate and then slept until almost 11. Crazy! She has never slept that much. But it was fine with me and I took a full advantage of it and took a nap myself:)

Sunday, August 27, 2017

New start

I have not blogged for over 3 years but I have decided to give it a go again so i can look back at this time in my life in a few years.
It seems that not much has happened in those 3 years.....that's what happens when you work/live in small town in rural Illinois. But there has been some changes so let's recap the last few months.
I bought a house in 2015- I never lived in a house, my parents and I and my sister lived in an apartment but my grandparents lived in houses and I always prefered that. I live living in a house although it is a lot of work. Because I dont want to put too much money into this house be ause I know I will move eventually (3-4 years) I (yes, I me myself) sanded and refinished and stained my hardwood floors, took one wall down, repainted and rearranged the kitchen caninets (well, my sister helped when she came visit on Christmas), build a deck, build a fence (again my sis and a cousin helped me with this). I am impressed by myself:)))
I found a wonderful guy who moved in with me in summer 2016
I was supposed to go on a work assignment in India starting in 2018 so we decided to start a family before we go.
We found out I was pregnant in November, due July 2017
Everybody told me not to go to India with a tiny little baby so we decided not to go. Instead, I decided to change jobs. I have worked as a plant controller for a tire manufacturing company the last 3 years and I decided that it was time to try something different and I have been playing with the idea to move closer to production process. Everybody has been very supportive and when I go back to work after the maternity leave (November 1) I will be going into Industrial Engineering. I am super excited!
Baby girl Alexa was born on July 4. My firecracker baby! She is adorable and we cannot get enough of her!
I signed up for Madison 70.3 in 2018.

And this is where this starts. I would like to document my journey about getting back to training and racing  (I did stay active during pregnancy but not as much as I would have liked , esp first 6 months when I was puking my brains out daily, even ended up in ER one night on IV for fluids), losing weight (I gain weight very easily and I gained close to 50 pounds), while raising my sweet little girl and working a new job.

I started running 2 weeks after giving birth and saying that it was horrible is an understatement. I did not have any physical birth-related pain (well, it was as painless as it can be after birth and episiotomy). Finally after 3 weeks I started feeling little better and i could actually use my core while running! I ran 6 miles today and it has been my longest run since....forever. I ran at 10' pace these day and my interval workouts (I did 400,800,1200,800,400) are at 8' pace. It makes me super sad and mad how slow I am but I think that after I loose more of this baby weight (I was at 215-220 pregnant and am down to 193, still loooooot of pounds to loose to get to 150ish) and am consistent with running it will come back.
Because of the episiotomy I was very cautious about biking and I started after 4 weeks and no pain at all. I have mostly been doing easy peasy pedaling. I need to start some real biking.
I have not swam yet......I swim at college that is 20' drive and their summer pool hours suck, they are only open in the morning and Nathan (my soon to be husband:)) goes to work before 6 so I have noone to watch Alexa. But now summer is over and school started so I need to find out new hours.

And on a baby front....Alexa is a happy easy going baby. She is super alert and moving all the time. She smiles a lot, especially at her dad, and she gets frustrated when I talk to her and she is not able to talk back. She tries very hard! She changes very fast. Every day we discover that she does something new!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Training in Paradise! (Arizona Training Camp)

I have spent 10 awesome days in Arizona. Loved every second of it. And I am going back next year!:)

Krista and Kelly (Thank you Krista and Kelly!!! You did a great job!!!) of BSC were organizing the first edition of Scottsdale Training Camp but I figured if I was going to go to Arizona I better spent more than five days there.
So I got hooked up with a lovely Christie who let me stay at her house in Tucson area for a few days (Thanks Christie!) before the official camp began.

I pretty much spent my days riding my bike on nice wide "shouldered" roads (ok, not all roads in Tucson are smooth, some are really crappy but most are nicer than here in IL), running through the deserts (sooooo beautiful! I love cacti!) and swimming in outdoor pools (outdoor pool! I have not swum in one since Hannover)!

I so loved doing nothing just training and relaxing the whole days. Dreamy. Since I cannot write about every single awesomeness here are some highlights:

I got sunburnt the very first day on my 4h ride....And then little bit more the second day.

Mt Lemmon - or rather the cookie. You know how they say that those cookies from the Cookie Cabin are huge and you cannot eat one all myself. Well, I did not believe that. Challenge??? Mt Lemmon was not really in my plan for pre-official camp because we were going to ride up as part of the camp too but you see, I was going to try to eat that damn cookie all by myself but I was slightly embarrassed to do it in front of all other campers so I had to go up alone. I shot a text to Michelle begging her to let me go up. And she did:) I took my sweet time going up because I did not know what to expect, just steady pedaling up up UP! and at around mile 20 I was ready to throw the bike off the nearest cliff and hitch the ride to the Cookie Cabin. But I eventually made it after 3h5min and got my cookie! Chocolate Chip with ice cream, caramel, nuts and whipped cream. It took me 30 minutes to eat that thing:)

Running through the desert is awesome. Sooo pretty. Dry, but pretty.

Christie has a grapefruit tree in her backyard and I love grapefruits! One of my favorite fruits. And fresh grapefuits are so yummy. I had a fresh grapefruit every day and even took some with me home. 

I spent five glorious days in Tucson and then moved to Scottsdale to continue with the fun!

It was super fun. I train alone all the time therefore I LOVED riding, running and swimming with other people.

Special surprise - Michelle came for the camp!!! I had no idea she was coming. She just showed up on one of our bike rides... Funny thing that I was not wearing my glasses so I did not really recognize her:) We would rip each other legs off on our bikes if we were training together! Sucking her bike wheel was one of the best times I had at the camp.

Mt Lemmon - the second time felt shorter/easier. I took me 10min less and I think that it was easier because I knew what was coming. The week before I only went to the Cookie Cabin but this time I decided to go all the way up to the Summit. It was all good until the Ski Valley but then the "fun" part began with the steeper hills. Descend is super fun. The week before I could not fully enjoy it because I was stopping like every 5min to take pictures and I got stuck behind this very slow car. But not this time, I stayed in aerobar 99% of the descend and it was great!

I rode with some awesome ladies. They were in 40+ age group and they could kick any 20-year old a$$. I want to be like them when I grow up!

Until next year!!!

Riding to the Mt Lemmon summit. There was snow. Brrrr!

Isn't this pretty? I can get used to riding here!

Running in the desert. Loved it! 

Swimming here makes early morning wake up calls easier... 

Grapefruits. Yum! 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

1k under 4 minutes

I am not sure what it says about how things are going if I'm excited about running one 1k repeat in 3:56. It probably means I need to put my sh*t together and do something about my running fitness (stop running intervals by feel, start using your watch!!!). But I can't help it. I am pretty stocked about that <4 min:-="" nbsp="" p="">
Actually I ran 3 of them (after an easy 5mile warm up, for 8.5miles total run). They were 4:04, then I decided that the wind was too strong so I changed the start so I ran the tailwind stretch 3 times and headwind stretch only 2 times, 4:00, 3:56. And I jogged/walked 800-1000m in between so my rest was like 7-8min.
My legs hurt already after 800 m of the 1st interval. I could still feel my right hip flexor little bit as I opened my stride, but most of the pain was just not being used to faster running and the permanent tired state my legs are in. I guess that's what 70.3 training does to you.

I don't remember the last time I ran fast intervals. I think that it was couple months ago (I tried last Friday but that didn't work out very well so I'm obviously not counting that). Let me brainstorm: I trained for BSL all last spring with long intervals at HM pace, then my training went downhill when I was working 80-90h weeks all summer and all I could master were 1h easy runs at 4am before the daily hell started, then after Vegas I had enough and spent the fall eating peanut butter out of the jar using chocolate bars as a spoon. So really I have no idea when I did something fast but it was a long time ago.

So eventough it was slow by my standards and it hurt more than I would have liked, it still felt awesome because we all know how much I love track workouts. I wish I could do only those!
Oh yeah, and it was like 70 degrees and I was in shorts and sports bra! I'm solar powered. (Unless it is 100 degrees because my 6 feet and 140 pounds body doesn't deal that well with that.)

I just got a confirmation yesterday that I can race AG ITU Olympic distance World Championship in Edmonton at the end of August, so once I'm done with my Mallorca vacation I am hopefull that I will do more of these faster efforts:-)

Sunday, March 9, 2014

7 days later

and I am still sore from that spin bike ride I did as part of the indoor tri. Can you believe that?
I tried to open my stride during a 1k repeats workout on Friday but it hurt too much and I was worried that I might tear something in the psoas/grouch/hip flexors/inner thighs area.
Although I must say that today it feels much better than on Friday so hopefully my poor legs will be fully recovered by Tuesday.

On a different note. I finally bought my plane ticket to Mallorca (doing Mallorca 70.3 on May 10). My sister, mom, cousin and grandfather are coming too. We arrive Thursday, I race Saturday and then we stay exploring the island until Tuesday, and then I go to Slovakia to visit the rest of the fam until Sunday. So it is really not my "A" race, more like a vacation. And let me say that if Andreas Raelert doesn't race I would be really mad because he was the number one item on my "why do Mallorca race" list.

I checked the participant list and there is 113 women in my AG. Interesting. Could be worse, there is over 400 men in 30-34... Around 3000 athletes total. Yeah, everybody (meaning German and British speedsters) is going to be there. Highly popular race. With 1 slot to Mt Tremblant for each women's AG... Good thing I am not after any slots. But one day I will be back to win that race!!!:-)

Since I'm doing the race for fun (at least as much fun as one can have doing a HIM) I am not bringing my bike. Too much hassle. Mallorca is a very popular training spot so there are tons of bike shops offering bike rentals.  So I figured I can just rent a bike. But 5 hours and multiple emails later I found ONE tri bike for rent on the whole island....OK, I found 3 - but one is unavailable, the second one is too small, so that left me with one, which was labeled as testing bike. I reserved it but haven't received any confirmation so who knows what the deal is.
If worse come to worse I will race on a road bike. It is for fun anyway, right? ( just remind me about this when I'm super pissed about everyone kicking my butt on a bike portion after the race). And there is a 13mile climb in the middle of the bike so maybe I will be OK.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Indoor triathlon RR

You would be surprised what a supposedly short and sweet triathlon could do to you...I can't lift my legs and am likely skipping all the workouts planned for today just to recover from this 45 min long triathlon. I spent a few minutes at 2am on a foam roller today trying to limit the damage. True story.

I figured that swimming 10 min in a pool, riding 20 min on stationary bike and running 15 min on an indoor track would be a nice change from sitting on my trainer for 3-4h every weekend.

Swim was great, we were in multiple waves so each participant had her own lane. I swam exactly 700yards in 10 min. That's is around 1:25 pace and it didn't even felt hard. (I probably shouldn't admit that I didn't go as hard as I should have but just trying to be honest)
I swam around 14:45 for 1000 yards a few weeks ago and it definite was harder than yesterday's effort. It either means that my swimming is coming along nicely or it proves my theory that the pool I swim in is slow. Seriously, I went to visit my sis for the past two Xmases and I swam in pool there and both times when I got back to my pool I was like whoa, do they pour oil into this thing????

Then you had 10 min to transition. I changed to my tri shorts, drank water, chatted with a few people....

Bike is what has caused my very achy legs. You see, they had those spinning bikes and the way they function is the faster you spin the further you go. Therefore that was a torture for someone like me who usually bikes at low 80s cadence....So I spinned and spinned and spinned my brain out and my hip flexors got tighter and tighter and tighter.
You can totally tell who spends their free time in spin classes. We were all smoked by this 45years old lady. Next year I doing some spin classes with her if I'm doing this race again.
So I got off the bike and holy shi*!!!, my hip flexors! And they got only worse from there, not I can't lift either of my legs without using my arms to pull my leg up (how is that for explanation?). And those muscles behing the knees aren't thrilled with me either. I seriously think that if I try to bike today I'm going to injure myself.

Then another 10min transition that I spent...correct, stretching my hip flexors.

Run was alright. I started well, then it got harder, I was able to hold the pace for a little while but then I slowed down. I ran 3 600 m, which is 4:10 pace I believe. Hm, thinking of that, not too bad.

And that was it. 45min of SBR, 20min transitions, pure fun.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

I am ready

Thank you Continental!!!!

Well, partly ready. I still need to train.