Sunday, March 2, 2014
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
Saturday, January 18, 2014
So...fish. I did a swim test the other day and I swam the fastest I have ever swum! How exciting is that???????? My fastest swimming speed ever!
Both 50 and 200 were PRs, 1000 was ....hm, let's go with I didn't drown.
But that 50, I felt so fast:-) I think I swam 1:10ish for 100 once with fins so that doesn't really count.
I can't understand how some people can knock off 100s in one minute like nothing.
Saturday, January 4, 2014
2014 is here!!!!
I made a promise to myself that my work is not going to ruin my "athletic career" (I am using that term looselly)! So if I start bitching about having to work 80 h a week someone remind me about this promise ( if the writing on my bathroom mirror is not reminding enough)
I have nothing exciting to report training wise (let's keep our fingers crossed that it will change soon. See the paragraph above) so I will at least tell you what I want to do in 2014.
Half-ironman in Mallorca (May), ITU Chicago Olympic distance,(June) ITU Olympic distance age group world champs in Canada (August) and half-ironman in Brasil(December). How freaking awesome is 2014 going to be, right?!?
Half-iron worlds are not on the list because I don't think I can qualify and I don't have that much desire to qualify anyway. Hm, maybe I don't think I can qualify because I don't have enough desire to qualify? Or maybe I don't have the desire to qualify because I don't think I can? And it is one week after oly worlds and in the middle of one of the busiest week of the year at work...Anyway....maybe if I can start training soon and can see that I might be able to get into a necessary shape I will put it on my list.
So wish me luck and stay tuned.
Sunday, October 6, 2013
So I did some swims (and managed to injure my shoulder last Wednesday. Hopefully it is already gone and I can swim again) and those swims felt very good. I was not fast but I felt fast, and smooth and efficient.
I did a few bike rides. They were effort based, I am too scared to use my powermeter (plus it is out of batteries). Some rides were on a trainer and I was kind of treading them at first. But it turned out that I just totally forgot how much I like trainer workouts. So it is all good.
And runs. I did two track workouts this week! Awesome. I am pretty sure that the last time I did something faster than 8min pace was in early July. On Tuesday I did 8x400m with 2min rest. I started at 1:38 pace. Wow. But I did not cry:) I did 1:38s, then 1:36, 1:35, 1:30, 1:30. I do not know how I did it:)
And today...I did a workout off the bike. 3k sub-tempo (I did 4:24, 4:19, 4:15, nothing extraordinary but better than expected!!!), 5min rest and 4x800. Those were horrible. 3:05, 3:08, 3:09, 3:15 (but still better than expected). The rest was only 90sec and it was not enough. At the start of each one I was still huffing and puffing from the previous one. And I totally died on the last one.
It can get only better from here, right?
Sunday, September 22, 2013
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Ok, it is 11pm, I just came home from work and I should be sleeping but I cannot fall asleep yet because there is so much on my mind. Maybe putting it down on "paper" will help.
I do not have much positive to say. I have been working 73hours/week on average in the last ~6 week culminating with 85-hour week two weeks ago that included being at work from 6:30am Thursday to 9:30pm Friday....
So I did not train much and most of my training was happening at 4am after 6hours of sleep. I really tried to make peace with not being able to train like I want to, and some days I was successful, some not so much.
Last week and this week so far have been the worst and a lot of tears were shed.
I am super stressed from race and work and I am not even packed yet and my car broke down today and now I do not know how I am going to get to airport since the only friend I have here cannot give me a ride.
Deep breaths, deep breaths......I can do this.
I am a realist but I guess that each of us has that unrealistic part, and that small part of me was still hoping that I can pull it off, that I can have a good race. But then something happened today (I am not going into details here but someone told me something) and that little hope was crushed. So now I am going into the race without any hope and totally scared.I am 99% certain that I will cry at the start line.
I know it is horrible attitude and therefore my goal for this weekend is to behave in such a way that my negativity wont affect anyone. And another goal is not to cry at the start line...crying into goggles sucks, I have done that twice in the last week.
I really want it to be over and then I will start thinking about what to do next because I am not going to have another summer like this. It was awfull!
Tuesday, August 6, 2013
I spent the weekend at Lake Michigan with some friends. My friend has a house there, right on a beach and it was awesome!
I ran 12 miles on a beach on Sunday and I wish I could do it every day. It was amazing.
I went there mostly to cheer on friends racing Steelhead and as I did it I had zero desire to race myself. You know how my original plan was 1, to race Steelhead to try to qualify to Vegas if I do not qualify at BSL, 2, to race Steelhead to get more experience for Vegas if I qualify at BSL. Well, all that went out the window after I actually experienced what it is like to race halfironman. No thank you.
It was great to spend time with similarly minded friends. Since I do not have any friends here and even less someone to train with having people to chat and laugh and bike with was a real highlight of a trip.
I need training partners. It is so much easier to get motivated when someone is with you. Training always alone is starting to get non-motivational. Unfortunatelly closest bigger city that has a club is an hour drive so that's not gonna happen.
I was at work for 12+ hours yesterday, 12 hours today and will be back tomorrow at 5am. I told my boss I cannot and will not stay really late tomorrow to which he responded "wanna bet?"....
I will probably go home for a week in November, which will be fun. I am preparing a list of my favorite meals that my grandma is going to cook for me:)
Saturday, July 20, 2013
Thursday, July 11, 2013
The week after Buffalo Springs Lake was super recovery. Pretty much sitting on my butt for 5 days. Both because I had zero motivation to do something and because I was at work from dusk to dawn every day including 12h on July 4!
Michelle said that sitting on my butt for 5 days might kill me but I like taking risks:)
ITB is good. It hurt evening after the race and during the night but I made sure not to bend my knee unless necessary and that helped I think and it felt good again on Tuesday already.
So Vegas.....I am not excited for the race. It seems that I was either excited by the idea of qualifying but not actually racing it, or I am not excited because I am scared. Like really scared. By the run.
But I was running today (another horrible run) and I have made a decision to try an experiment. And a huge weight lifted of my chest. Here is what I want to do. I am a decent runner. I can run ~42 10k in an Olympic distance triathlon without too much training. But as I was training for the half-marathon something happened. Pretty much every run workout in the two months leading to BSL ended in frustration and occasional tears. And it continues. I do not know whether it is because of the HM training but in my mind it is. So what I would like to do is to train as if I was training for a 10k (no half-marathon effort thrown in a middle of a long run and stuff like that) but with one looong run (well, loooong meaning 10-11miles). And then see whether I can pull of a half-marathon.
I of course need to run this idea by PPC first but you would not believe how relieved I was immediately after I thought of this.
Maybe it will not work out and I will die slow and painful death in Vegas but at least I hope I will not go through the run training I went through in May and June and it will be better for my confidence and stress levels.
I am excited by the idea!
I will make a decision whether I will continue with halfs after Vegas. I will definitely let you know!
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
And now I know that I am never (NEVER) going to do a full Ironman because it must be at least twice as
horrible as a half-ironman.
To sum it up: It was hard! I did not really enjoy it that much and I am scared to do another one. But I get to do it all over again in September…. I hope that by then I will forget about the misery I went through on Sunday and it will be all good.
So the race. We (my cousin and I) drove 7h to Tulsa on Thursday, spent the night and then drove 7h to Lubbock. It was pretty good, we did not fight too much and he almost convinced me to buy a Camaro.
Got to the hotel, registered, jogged for 7min around the parking lot and went to sleep.
Saturday was supposed to be shake out bike and swim but we had a pretty big storm with lightning and everything so I did not swim and I biked for around 15min just to check that my new wheel actually turn.
I also went to a store and bough Vittoria Pit Stop that I forgot in a car where it exploded once it got 100+
degrees in a car and went through the plastic that cover a door and got stuck there.
Sunday I woke up at 3:30, ate two blueberry bagels and one caramel Milka chocolate and drank some
I set up my transition, kept it very simple, jogged for a bit, put on my wetsuit (Amanda Stevens was right to me putting her wetsuit on. Good omen.), said bye to my cousin, swam for around 200m. Then I got quite nervous and started wondering how in the world a few months ago could I have thought that doing a HIM was a good idea.
And soon we were off. It was a beach start so I sprinted, then did 2 dolphin dives (or something like
that since I have never practices it) and start swimming. I think that I had a pretty good start. I decided to gamble and did not wear contacts which pretty much means that there was a possibility that I might not be able to see the buoys very well. But I did see them and I was following people so no issue. I found some feet to draft off but then lost them soon and then I spend most of the swim trying to catch those feet. So swim went by quite fast. I was working pretty hard because I was panting. And although water was 74degrees I was not overheated. I slowed down towards the end though because I was getting tired.
I got out water, checked my watch (30:06 official time – means swim was short), got my bike, put on socks, shoes, helmet and biked out.
Bike was very windy, but mostly flat with 7 hills, the first one being right from the transition. I took the
hills very easy, just spinning because I was terrified by the run to come and did not want to kill my poor legs. I yelled once at one guy to get off my wheel, other than that it was good. Bunch of men passed me, plus
2 women but I was mostly passing people. I did not wear a bike computer or powermeter so I just went
by feel trying to go strong. I think that I went quite hard but my time was only 2:43 so I am blaming a challenging course for that slow time. I ate 3 gels and drank 1.5 bottles of Gatorade (or Powerade, dang it, I never know which one I buy, they are the same), took water at each aid station, drank some and poured some over me. I knew that I was at the pointy end of the race because I did not see a lot of women on the out and back sections (but that might have been because I did not have contacts or glasses so I could not really see that much) but I did not know which position I was. There were some rougher roads at miles 30ish to 45ish and I did not enjoy that at all and wanted to get off that stupid bike. But then I remembered that I have to run 13.1 miles so I changed my mind and did not want to get off the bike anymore.
Run….my longest run since November 7 2009! If you can call it a run. But woo-hoo anyway! Course is
pretty much flat with 3 quite long and steep hills. And I walked every single one of those hills. I also
walked every single aid station. And I am not exaggerating. I walked every single hill, seriously! My poor
legs were not in shape to run 13 miles and there are no hills around here. It was a shuffle from the beginning. I did not wear Garmin so I do not know my exact paces but I ran 7:30ish pace for the first 3 (flat) miles (including walking through the aid stations), then the hills started and with all that walking my pace for middle 6 miles was 8:30, and then 7:40ish for the last 3 miles. It
was horrible. Two women passed me but they were not in my age group and I passed a few. I saw some
women behind me at the turn around but I was confident enough that if they try to pass me I am not going to let them. I just had zero mental power to try to catch someone in front of me. The last 2 miles were struggle. I was still passing some people but I was dying. I passed one guy at aid station 12, but then I walked the aid station, so he re-passed me and it took me half a mile to pass him again. And as I passed him he told me that that in front of us is a girl and I should go get her. I know it is mean to pass a person with 200m to go in a 70.3 mile race but well….I passed her.
I drank some water, coke, Gatorade at aid stations (it was hot and they had ice in everything and I hate ice in drinks, even when it is 100 degrees out so I did not enjoy it that much), dump ice down my shorts and my bra to stay cool. I did not eat any gels because I did not feel like I was bonking, I had all the energy I needed, I just did not have leg power to keep moving. I was just going from one aid station to another looking forward to being able to walk and I did take my sweet time there. I finished in 1:46:41, which is embarrassingly slow but well, I should not have walked up those hills and aid stations.
Total time 5:04:32. (Oh well, that challenging bike and my dillydallying on a run killed my hopes to go under 5h. Even that short swim did not help).
As soon as I met with my cousin (who by the way took 1 (ONE!) picture of me racing (at the beginning of a bike) but we have dozens of pictures of cacti and different rocks because as he told me I was too slow and he got bored waiting for me and went hiking in a canyon.
But I somehow won my age group, which is really what I went there for. So I decided to suck it up and took the Vegas slot. Good thing I won because there was only one for my AG.
5:04:32, 1AG, 19th women (incl pros)
I am never doing an Ironman.
I need to run more. Especially longer runs. But cannot. So I guess HIM will always be a misery.
My ITB started to hurt at around mile 10 and I started praying. It hurt afterwards, but I taped it, rolled it and did my best not to bend that knee for the rest of the day. I felt it during the night a few times, not it was ok on Monday and it is ok now so I hope it has calmed down. But I am not going to run at least until Thursday to make sure it is ok.
I need to find a hill and do my runs up and down that sucker to get ready for Vegas.
I am never doing a full ironman.
Saturday, May 25, 2013
It is the same tri I did as my first tri two years ago. I was pretty excited about doing this tri to see my progress.
It did not go as planned. I know I am a better swimmer and much stronger on a bike now than I was before, and run, I do not think that I have improved.
I do not know what was wrong today, maybe that I was at work for 14h on Th, then drove 8+ hours yesterday from IL to MI, maybe because of cold weather, maybe because I have zero fire in me.
Ok, so the race.
The day started with scrapping frost of my car windshield. Good, isn't it?
Swim: 26:18 Hell yeah!!! They postponed the start by ~20' which gave me time to warm up, which was good I think. I felt strong, smooth, efficient. Just great! I swam alone for most of the swim. I was trying to draft off one gal but I kept loosing her feet and then we ran inti men from previous wave and sprint race waves and it become a mayhem. But anyway, I am very hapoy about the swim.
T1: I have not tried a flying mount since September and I chickened out. Embarassing.
Bike: 1:11 Which is time I rode in that first tri on a road bike in running shoes...I felt good at first but I think that I must have gotten too cold. Or maybe I need to ride the TT bike outside more (well, today was the second time I rode it outside since October) because my position is different outside and I felt uncomfortable.
By the end of the ride my hands and feet were so cold that I had hard time shifting. And I drank one small sip of gatorade the whole race because I just could not hold a bottle in my frozen hands or open a gel.
T2: Had trouble unbuckling the helmet because of the frozen fingers and had hard time putting the shoes on for the same reason.
Run: High 41 Embarassing but I am progressing. I think that I can run close to 40 off the bike by this fall if I can run.
I had no idea what position I was in I saw some women on an out and back section and I passed the last one with 1.5 miles to go.
I felt good the whole time, except for two miles that are run on a grass (that was not cut!!!) and I was tripping over my own legs. But my running just sucks. Plain and simple.
Total time: 2:23 (I went 2:27 and 2:21 on this course before)
I am disappointed because I know I can ride and run better but I do not know why I did not. Geez, I need to get over this by June 30!!!
I was pretty confident I won but then I saw the results and I was second. So I drove 8+ hours to be second?!? Grrr. However after the initial disappointment when I was able to think clearly I realized something was not right. According to the results the first women swam 30, rode 59, ran 40. And she was 44. If there is a gal who can TT 40km (this course is accurate) under 60' AND run 40' 10k afterwards I want to see her. Is it possible? Even female TT specialists cannot easily ride 40k under an hour. So I went back to check what the first man rode to compare. And then I saw that they updated the results and I was first. So I feel better now:)
Oh, and I got a parking ticket at the race. What a stupid day!
Any advice how to get my fire back?
Friday, May 17, 2013
Common sense tells me that I should not do that but it is hard to fit all the workouts in and then I end up never running on fresh legs. But of course on the other hand it is good I guess because I will get used to pushing through the fatique.
This is the first time I am training for a half-marathon. Well, I already trained once for a HM, in 2010, but I think that that lasted 2 weeks and then my ITB has flared up. So it is kind of new to me. All those long workouts, wow. Totally something I have not really done before.
For example I did 7x1k @ 10k pace w/ 2min jog recovery today. It was easy-peasy but sooo long. 7x1k is a lot for me. It went pretty well, I was not sure how fast to run it so I started conservatively and then see how it goes. 4:04, 4:04, 4:02, 4:00, 3:58, :58, 3:56.
I kind of feel that I am not running my intervals fast enough. I do not know.
I also do long runs with running at HM pace embedded in them. Like for example 2x15min, or 25min. That is also completely new to me. Sometimes it goes well, sometimes it does not. I kind of arbitrary chose my HM pace to be somewhere around 4:25 pace (4:25/km, not mile....but I wish:)) but how fast I run really depends on a day. For example two weeks ago I ran 25min at 4:13 pace because I felt good, but this week I tried but my legs just would not go.
I also have this one workout that I do every two weeks so I can kind of gauge my progress (1k @5k, mile @10k, 3k @HM, mile @10k, 1k @5k). Problem is that sometimes I do it after work, sometimes in the morning and last time I did it off the bike so I cannot really compare. The one off the bike was interesting.I normally do 1k in 3:50-4:00, miles @ 4:05-10, 3k @ 4:20-25. But last Sunday I did a 3h30min bike and then then did this workout. I felt awesome at the beginning and ran 1k in 3:55, mile @ 4:04 pace and 3k @ 4:14 pace, which I knew might have been little too fast but I decided to see whether I can pull it off. Turns out I could not because then I ran mile @ 4:10 pace and 1k in 4:15 or something like that. Wheels came off and I think that I might have bonked too.
I do 3-4 runs a week (depends on my work schedule): 2 interval runs (one long intervals, one short intervals), 1 long run and 1 easy short run if I do 4 runs. Overall the running is going well. ITB seems to be doing fine, it does not bother me at all. I still go to the PT every 3 weeks and I tried to run with a good form that I know helps to prevent ITB flare ups. So hopefully it will all be good. Although I can tell that it is not 100%, I can feel that there is something wrong in that right ITB in the knee area.
I am doing an Oly tri on May 25 in Michigan and it is the one I did in 2011 as my first triathlon. It is the same course and everything and I think that it will be super cool to see how I have improved in last two years. I do not expect any improvement on my run because I have not trained enough in those two years but swim should have improved and so should have my bike.
Sunday, May 12, 2013
And the struggle continues...
You know what the last thing I want to do when I get home after getting up at 5am, doing a workout, and then going go!go!go! 12 hours at work is? It is biking.
Actually all I want to do is do nothing, just sit and give my brain a rest, get a mental break. I am a vegetable by the time I get home from work and my poor brain is fried but I can usually force myself into running or swimming, but biking....not so much. You see, my bike workouts are hard and they require a lot of focus and concentration. (Swim and run are also hard but they do not require that much concentration and thus are not as mentally taxing as bike is for me) and I just do not have energy to focus.
I have had a little meltdown 3 weeks ago. I skipped 2 bikes, 1 swim and 1 run that week. It was the same week my boss told me I cannot have vacation in August to go to Hawaii for training camp and that we shall see about vacation in September for Vegas.... NOT a coincidence. (Ok, I have not qualified for Vegas yet but you must believe in yourself)
I somehow recovered, did a few "do not care about pace/time/power" workouts and I have been alright for the last 2 weeks but I know that the tension is building again and in a couple weeks I will have another meltdown if I have to continue working 10-12hours a day.
I also have no fire in me any more. I was excited for Buffalo Springs Lake but not anymore. I am not excited for anything. I only go through motions.
I will do my best to manage everything until June 30 and try not to blow up before that.
I originally wanted to write more about my training in the last two weeks because there were some good days but I do not want to do it anymore. Zero motivation.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
This workout is a staple. And a good benchmark by which I can judge how I am doing. And I kind of like it.
I am writing about it so I can come back to this later and compare when I was and where I am.
But firstly, I did an 80 mile relay race on Saturday. One team lost a runner, somebody saw me by a pool with a bike on a car, they tracked me down and voila, I was doing a race. 8 people, each doing 3 legs, thus each of us ran around 10miles (my legs were 3.8, 2.5, 3.8) It was a great fun BUT once you were done with your leg you had no time to cool down or stretch. You hoped into a van to ride to the next switch point. And this constant hard running, sitting for ~3h, hard running, sitting etc killed my legs. I tried to walk as much as possible during those three hours while waiting till it was my turn again but it didn't help much. I felt my legs getting tighter and tighter. I was super sore on Sunday (and my 3.5h bike ride did not really help things) and I did a harder bike ride yesterday and an easy run and ouch! That run hurt.
I am still sore today but now I can at least walk down the stairs almost normally.
So the workout. At first the warm up was ok but then my legs, mostly right calf and right quad, started protesting to the point that I started contemplating not doing the workout because I might injure myself. But then decided to give it a try, take it easy and if I feel that it is too much I stop. Turns out that my muscles hurt only when I run slowly and I do not feel any pain when I run faster, intetesting.
5x1k at 5k pace with 2' jog. Yes, I jogged, transition period is over, real running beggings.
3:54, 3:54, 3:52, 3:50, 3:48. And it was easy-peasy. Ok, the last 200 was faster because I went through 800 in 3:05 and I wanted to get under 3:50. But the rest was effortless.
If 3:50-55 is my taking it easier, effortless pace on sore legs I will take it, no complains:)
I stopped after the last interval to take a sip of water and as I started running again to cool down those first steps were horrible. Ouch. My poor legs. And I am back to not being able to walk down the stairs normally. So it was probably quite stupid to do the workout but I am just so happy to be able to run that I don't want not to run.
PS: I might or might not have eaten half a cheesecake today. So I was high on sugar and that's probably one of reasons why the workout was ok. I always have a great run when I eat cookies/cake/other junk for lunch.