2018: Training Weeks 6 & 7

Time really got away from me!  I know things have been busy with work, training, and other things in life, but I didn’t realize I was already two weeks behind posts.  Training has been going well- I’m slowly but surely building up a good engine for the 2018 race season, my weight is slowly going down and the speed is going up, all good things!  Ok, a brief summary of the past 2 weeks of training:

Week 6: 2/5 – 2/11 – Total Training Hours: 8:25  This was a step-back/easy week after three weeks of higher intensity and also to ‘save’ my legs for my big final Frostbite race.  It worked, I won my age group with a 7:29 pace for the 3 mile race.  It also earned me 2nd in my Age Group for the race series. 🙂

Week 7: 2/12 – 2/18 – Total Training Hours: 10:35  Back to the grind, the focus is still on building up my run mileage so my coach added on some more miles for a long run of 10 miles with 8 @ 8:49 tempo….which was ALL done on the treadmill thanks to some unexpected snow.  I think the last time I ran that long on the treadmill was before I even did triathlons… maybe 2010?  Regardless, it wasn’t as bad as I remembered.  Now a 20 miler on the treadmill?  No. Thank. You.

Well that’s about it, Happy Monday!

 

 

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2018: Training Week 5

Another week down and it was a busy one as usual!  I can’t believe it’s already February…. so far 2018 seems to be flying.   Work was busy as I had my second re-certification test on Friday, so I was either working, working-out or studying (or eating, ha). I passed the test though so no more studying!  On Saturday JMR and I went to see the Sound of Music, which was his Christmas gift as something for us to do together.  It was nice to do something together on the weekend other than projects around the house (I’d say yardwork, but who am I kidding, I leave the yardwork up to JMR) or going out to dinner which are things we usually do for ‘us’ time.   We did watch the Superbowl with my family, however since I don’t care about football it really was more of a commercial watching/halftime entertainment/eating event for me. I did stay up LATE and watched the new episode of ‘This is Us’ which brough me to tears as usual (it’s such a darn good show).

On a training related note week 5 was the largest week of volume so far for 2018 and also 2017 with the exception of one 12 hour week the week of 2/6.  So hooray for that!  This week is a recovery week as I have my last Frostbite Series race on Saturday and then it’s back to the grind next week.

Week 5: 1/29-2/4

Monday: 2650y swim in the am, followed by Hot Yoga after work

Tuesday: Speedwork – 1mi warmup, 12×100 work up to sprint, 12×200 @5k w/ 1min RI, 1 mi cooldown

Wednesday: 2550y swim in the am, followed by a 70 min trainer ride after work

Thursday: Tempo run – 5 miles w/ 3@ tempo pace with 2min RI

Friday: 2600y swim in the am

Saturday: 8 mi run with 6 @Half-Marathon pace. I’m not where I would like my pace to be, but was able to run around 8:40ish for the 6 so hooray for that!  After the run I headed to the pool to swim 2500y

Sunday: 90 minute trainer ride followed by 10 minutes on the treadmill

Total Training Hours: 10:04

An added bonus is that I felt pretty good Sunday afternoon, my body wasn’t angry and I didn’t need to nap the rest of the afternoon, so it looks like my body is adapting to the slowly increased workload each week 🙂  However I’m definitely ready for an ‘easier’ week this week!  As usual I have no pictures to post, so here’s a picture of Patrick after he got groomed on Thursday:

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Happy Monday!

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2018: Training Week 4

This is just a short update since the past week wasn’t too eventful.  My coach wasn’t kidding when he said at the beginning of January that he wanted me to get several weeks of consistent training completed before switching things up, so week 4 was pretty darn similar to the previous 3 weeks with a few variations in workouts.  However, what has changed is that my time/paces have improved over the course of the four weeks, so he is on to something!

Week 4: 1/22-1/28

Monday: 2225y swim in the am, and 1 hour of hot yoga after work

Tuesday: Speedwork in the am: 1 mi warmup, 2×800, 4×400, 8×200 all @ 5k pace w/ 1 min active RI, 1 mi cooldown

Wednesday: 2550y swim in the am followed by 70 min trainer ride after work

Thursday: 50 min run w/ 6×2 min @ 5k pace

Friday: 2650y in the am.  Main set: 2×15 min- I managed to get in 825 for each interval and that’s fast for me these days!

Saturday: Frostbite series 4mi race.  This went better than expected! I finished with a 7:53avg, which was 20 seconds faster per mile than the 5k I ran two weeks before, so hooray for speedwork and consistency paying off! 🙂

Sunday: 70 min trainer ride followed by 10min run on the treadmill

Total Training Hours: 9:03

Staying consistent by sticking with the theme of ‘no excuses’, so the goal for 2018 is going strong 🙂

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2018: Training Week 3

Hooray, three weeks down of consistent training, and an early swim this morning to start week 4 off on the right foot!  Other than work and training, last week was pretty uneventful as I had a re-certification exam for work on Friday and pretty much spent all of my free time outside of work/training to STUDY.  Ugh. To help keep me awake and help me focus while studying, I have been relying heavily on coffee, thanks to the $50 worth of Starbuck’s gift cards I found buried in a drawer.  I haven’t had coffee (let alone caffeine) since April 2017, and boy did it help, however now I am craving it every morning!  So as a compromise I have been making my own with our Keurig and saving the rest of the Starbuck’s gift card for the next re-certification test I’m taking on 2/2.

Oh I did forget one fun detail from last week…. my car died Tuesday morning.  On the positive side, at least it died in our driveway.  After the tow truck hauled it away that morning (JMR tried to jump it with no luck) the shop called that afternoon with the bad news that it was the alternator that had crapped out, which also fried my battery.  On top of that, the pulley/belt which was causing some weird noises I noticed back in July was finally due to be repaired (I kept putting it off because the noise didn’t sound ‘that’ bad…), so it was a double whammy costing over 1k.  Ugh.  And I just spent a good chunk of $ on new rear brakes three weeks ago, I wish I was more savvy with fixing cars!

Ok, moving on to a more fun subject, week 3’s training!  I also have to apologize for no pictures in this post, I’m really slacking on my picture-taking these days.

Week 3: 1/15-1/21

Monday – 2250y swim in the am, and hot yoga after work

Tuesday – Speedwork: 1mi  warmup, 8×1 min @ 5k pace, 4×2 min @ 10k pace and 1 mi c/d. Note that I somehow misread the 4×2 pace and did that at 5k pace, which seemed odd to me at the time, and now I know why!

Wednesday – 2550y in the am, followed by 68 min trainer ride after work

Thursday – 5 miles with 3 @ tempo pace

Friday – 2275y in the am

Saturday – 6 miles with 4 @ HM pace, followed by a 2150y recovery swim (yes, you read that right… I swam FOUR times last week.  FOUR!!!)

Sunday – 70 min trainer ride, followed by a 10 min run

Total Training Hours: 9:00

Yeah! 9 hours right on the nose!  I did miss strength work this week (and have most weeks) as I’m having trouble fitting that in with everything else going on.  I might just do  core/a few upper body exercises and then my PT exercises for my hips and call it a day as right now I can’t seem to find an extra hour to head to the gym for a second workout most Tues/Thurs.

On that note, Happy Monday 🙂  Even though it’s rainy here this morning, it’s 50 degrees out, so I’m loving the non-tundra temps we are having!

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2018: Training Weeks 1 & 2

Well, after my last post in November, I did a few trainer rides here and there, but mostly focused on running so I wouldn’t die during the St. Jude Half Marathon the first weekend in December.  I didn’t die, but it felt pretty close to it.  It was my slowest half-marathon ever (by mile 6 I was done) but I got it done and was able to hang out in the finisher area and wait for JMR to finish the marathon.  He had yet another PR, finishing 3:27:21.  Damn he’s fast.  He was happy with the time but also pretty bummed he didn’t go sub 3:20 (which was his goal) as he was on pace and feeling great until mile 18 when the wheels fell off.  Despite his disappointment and my ridiculously awful half, we managed to have fun the rest of the afternoon hanging out around Beal street, eating good BBQ and watching a local Christmas parade.  That night we had a fancy dinner at one of out hotel’s restaurants to celebrate JMR’s PR and called it a night around 9p.

After the race, I turned into a slug.  The following three weeks all I did was run one day a week, and that was only because I signed up for the Frostbite Series, a 5-part race series which started on December 16th.  I think I rode my trainer a couple of times, I did zero swimming and then around the last week of December I came down with a stomach bug and was out for the count.  Quite the productive December.

Finally (finally!) the motivation came back around the 29th of December when I ran the 2nd race in the Frostbite series, then that Sunday I rode my trainer for an hour, and on New Years day, I got my butt in the pool and swam for 40 minutes.  Now a little over two weeks later I already feel like I’m getting in a groove, slowly improving with each workout and getting a little bit more in shape.  AND I’ve been swimming 3x a week.

I think what has helped me get into a routine (especially one that has involved many early am workouts, which in the past was a very rare thing) is the mentality of ‘no more excuses’.  It’s not really a 2018 resolution, but just one in general to try to really follow through with what I say I will do, not find excuses and just do it.  Also that ‘goal’ or ‘resolution’ isn’t just regarding workouts, it’s all areas in my life.  I know that things will come up and I won’t be able to do everything all the time that I had planned to do or said I would do, but at least it’s a way to start getting into a better mentality and push the excuses to the side.

IMSG

Another reason or motivation for me getting my workouts in is that my first big race, St. George 70.3, as of today, is 15 weeks away!  So I think that has also helped me focus on my workouts because they are all geared towards getting me ready for that race- the potentially choppy swim, the very hilly bike and also a hilly run.  Not an easy race!

We are also extending the trip to stay a few days after the race to hike in Zion National Park, which I am SO excited to do.  We are still figuring out which hikes we will do as one goes through a ‘lottery system’ since they only allow 80 people per day to go through that specific hike, and the other depends on the weather as they close the trail if rain is the forecast due to possible flash floods.  Regardless, it’s our first real ‘trip’ since our honeymoon three years ago so I think we will have fun however it turns out 🙂

I have declared this year as ‘The Year of 70.3’s’ as I’m going to focus on that distance and maybe consider long course in 2019.  So far the plan is to do St. George on 5/5, Route 66 70.3 on 7/29 and another 70.3 early September (race TBD).  I also have a few half marathons planned and some shorter tri’s, but 70.3’s are the main focus with the goal to finally break 6 hours! 🙂

Ok! On with the past two weeks of training:

Week 1: January 1-7th

Monday: Swam 2025y in the am

Tuesday: Speedwork on the treadmill: 1 mi warmup, 2×800, 4×400, 8×200 w/ 1min RI, 1 mi cooldown

Wednesday: 2550y in the am, 67 min trainer ride after work

Thursday: 5 mi run in the am w/ 6×2 min at 5k pace

Friday: 2400y swim in the am

Saturday: 1 mi warmup, 30 min at marathon pace, 10 min at half-marathon pace, 1 mile cooldown

Sunday: 70 min trainer ride

Total Hours: 7:24

Week 2: January 8-14th

Monday: Swam 2300y in the am, Hot Yoga after work

Tuesday: Speedwork on the treadmill: 1 mi warmup, 4×800, 4×400, w/ 2min RI, 1 mi cooldown,  10 min abs before bed

Wednesday: 2550y in the am, 67 min trainer ride after work

Thursday: 5 mi run in the am w/ 6×2 min at 5k pace

Friday: 2450y swim in the am

Saturday: Frostbite Series race #3: 5k!  I had been using 8:34 as my 5k pace for speedwork since I have lost some speed since early October, but I surprised myself with an 8:14 avg pace for this race!  Hopefully I’m still getting my speed back and the numbers will keep dropping

Sunday: 70 min trainer ride

Total Hours: 8:18

Ok, that’s it for now, Happy Monday 🙂

 

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Slowly Getting the Momentum Back…

Well I took quite the hiatus from my blog after all of the allergy stuff started happening, because well, training wasn’t happening, and that kind of is the focus of this blog.  After many months of trial and error with food…I’m still going through trial and error.  This past weekend I realized soy is a huge nono, so that’s something I need to pay more attention to.  I guess I’m realizing that almost all packaged foods aren’t safe so I’m going to have to get more creative (and busy) in the kitchen.

After many MANY tears, I ended up pulling out of IMWI as my training was nowhere near where it should have been, my energy levels were really low and I was not in a good place mentally either.  After my energy came back a bit and my mood improved, I did manage to do a couple of races this late summer- I did a sprint tri on 9/10 and was 5th OA female and won my age group, and a 5k on 10/1 where I was 7th OA female and also won my age group.  However there is a theme for both of those races, they were SMALL, so not a lot of competition, but hey, I’ll still take the AG wins 🙂

Even with those races, my training was pretty half-assed from July until the end of October.  About a week and a half ago, I finally got bitten by the training bug again.  I realized how much I had missed training, how good it made me feel and the structure it gives me (which translates to other parts of my life as well).  Even if it made my eczema flare up (sweating seems to do that), I still feel better afterwards, regardless of the itching!  So two Saturdays ago I hopped on the trainer for an hour…and then the following Sunday I ran the planned six miles on my schedule…and then that Monday I swam and the momentum kept going, so much so, that I finally had completed all of my workouts for the week, something that I don’t think I’ve done in months (eek).  When I went to bed last night I was very proud of my 7 hours and 13 minutes of training.  Finally, I’m getting back into the swing of things.

After pulling out of IMWI, I was also having trouble figuring out what I wanted 2018 to be, will an IM be part of it?  Will I just stick to Olympics and sprints?  Part of what made the decision hard was that I had already spent so much money this year on medical bills for allll of the different doctors that I had seen, and the thought of traveling far and paying for a pricey IM just did not sound as appealing as it did at the beginning of the year (before all of the allergies flared up).  The original plan was Ironman Whistler.  I knew I wanted to do it well over a year ago (I think a month after I had signed up for IMWI 2017), it looked like a beautiful yet challenging course, and we could also make it into a vacation afterwards.  However that plan got nixed as the travel logistics and costs were causing me stress that far outweighed the idea of that ‘awesome race/trip’.

After giving it a lot of thought, I think I have come up with two main races (my A and B races) for 2018.  I have been toying with the idea of St. George 70.3 in May (my B race) and making it a vacation after the race and going to Zion National park.  I still have my tribike transport slot I paid for in 2013 that I can use (can you believe that? awesome company) and I have credit card points we can use for airfare, so other than renting a car and the inexpensive lodging I found, I think we could pull it off without it hurting our bank account 🙂  I’m also still itching to doing another IM.  However I’ve come to terms with the fact that if I want to do it, it’s going to be on the cheap.  Ironman Louisville in October checks off all of the boxes I needed checked.  Driveable (like, as in less than 6 hours…I don’t do well with much longer than that), inexpensive lodging, and since it’s so close (4 hours away), we can just drive up Friday and drive home Monday, making it only a 3 night hotel stay. Ironman Wisconsin was also on the list, but a lot of the hotels are more expensive (I would want to stay downtown as logistically it makes things so much easier for the athlete and the sherpas/family), it’s a bit longer of a drive and honestly, I’m a little scared to sign up again after a DNS this year.  Maybe in the future though 🙂  I realize those races are far away, but having them planned helps give me motivation to swim and bike during the offseason, when I really only want to be running.

Speaking of running, I do have some of those races coming up!  JMR and I are doing the Quincy 5k Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving, then on 12/2 JMR is doing the St. Jude Marathon and I am doing the half, and of course we are doing the Frostbite short series as usual (a 5 part series that starts in December and ranges from 2miles to a 5k).  I think I’ll be ok doing the 5k coming up but my training is nowhere near where it should be for a half, so that will be interesting.  I hoping to get in at least one long run of 11+ miles before, but we’ll see how my body feels about that.

And since I used to post training for the week, why not, even though I have no specific countdown to a certain race:

Week of 10/30

Monday- 1800y swim

Tuesday- speedwork: warmup, 4×200, 4×400, 4×200, cooldown

Wednesday- 2550y swim in the am, 1 hour trainer ride in the pm

Thursday- 1 hour run, 6 miles

Friday- Rest day/core

Saturday- 1:15 run, 7.75 miles

Sunday- 2 hour trainer ride with main set at 130 watts

Total Training Hours: 7 hours 13 minutes

 

Happy Monday!

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Allergy Update #2/IMWI Training Weeks 21 & 22

Well maybe I should change this to an allergy blog, because lately that’s all that I’ve been dealing with and training has mostly taken a backseat.  Skipping Week 20’s update because it was a dismal 3:06, so not much to report there.

Allergy updates: Two Sunday nights ago I used a product that I didn’t realize had propylene glycol in it and by the next morning the rashes were out of control and itchy (and I also had them down THERE….ants in my pants!).  So I might have hysterically called the Drs. office for something to help with the itching and calm the rash down.  The nurse offered either something topical or something oral, and since the rash was allll over, topical seemed kind of pointless, so I said oral.  Within an hour at I was Walgreens to pick it up, which turned out to be a 12 day round of Prednisone.  I was happy but also a little sad thinking of the potential weight gain that I had during the last two rounds, also coming off of it I found myself anxious and depressed (which is a direct relationship to my lack of desire to train on my ‘bad’ weeks).

However I started it that day and by day 3 my rashes had significantly improved, but my anxiety was through the roof.  I just felt awful..and the thought of feeling that way for 9 more days, plus how awful I have felt coming off of them sounded miserable too.  So I called my dad (who is a retired Dr.) to see if I would have horrible withdrawal from suddenly stopping. He said no since 3 days is such a short-term dosage so I should be fine.  Phew!  However after I stopped I still had the anxiety/depression feelings from stopping and by Sunday I was kind of a mess.  Training was the last thing on my mind.

See, I told you this should be an allergy blog 😉  Ok, on to (what little of there is) Training Updates!

Week 21

Monday-3650 y swim  Overslept and am in the office Monday-Wednesday so I couldn’t fit it in at lunch

Tuesday – Speedwork, it was HOT out: 800 warmup, 2×200, 2×400, 2×800, 800 cooldown

Wednesday – Trainer ride in the am, with a double brick, warmup, 10@ 150w, 8 min run, 10 @150w, 8 min run….that was tougher than I thought it would be!  I fit in a quick swim after work 1500y.

Thursday – Failed Tempo Run. 1 Mile warmup, 4 at 9:30, 1 mile cooldown. I have just been really sucking at these runs.  I live in a pretty hilly area and I think that’s killing me and mentally makes me check out.  I turned around 2.5 miles in and just ran back home, I was feeling so fatigued that I would worry if I did that full loop, I would be crawling home.  So 4.11 miles total.

Friday – Took PTO since I was flying out to Austin at 2p, so I did Saturday’s long swim that morning, 3250y.

Saturday – Woke up around 8:30 and headed out to run…it was looking cloudy out but not terrible.  I was excited to run there because our hotel was right next to a long trail (10 mile loop!) along the CO river.  It was beautiful.  The plan was to do 10 miles, I even brought my handheld and two gels.  I was prepared!  A little tired from not getting back to our room until 3a (aaand too many vodka tonics…I can drink clear liquor, but I think I won’t be doing that again after that weekend) but not terrible. It was going to be a pokey run, but I was determined to get it done.  Two miles into my run lightning struck and it started to pour.  I hid under a bridge hoping for it to clear up, but it didn’t look like it was going to let up anytime soon, so after 15 minutes I headed back to the hotel, which got quiet sketchy at times with so much lightning and thunder.  When I got back to the hotel I hung out at the front, hoping it would let up soon, but it was starting to get close to the time the group was meeting for brunch, so I called it a day with 4 sad miles.

Sunday – Oh boy.  Another night of dancing until 3a with too many vodka tonics (doubles at times to save time from having to wait in the super long lines…in hindsight that was realllly stupid).  I woke up feeling horrible, actually I think most of the girls in the group felt that way.  We headed to a place well-known for their amazing buffet, and it definitely hit the spot!  All I wanted to do was go back to the hotel and sleep, but I had to rally because I had a flight to catch!  By the time I got home at 4:30 I was in no mood (or shape) to ride 2.5 hours.  Although I had big goals of getting up early the next day and doing it.

Total Training hours: 3:44 ….it hurts to type that.

Week 22

Monday – still woke up feeling like crap (combined with the rash was a realllly fun day) so no ride, and also no swim after work.

Tuesday – still feeling off (thanks prednisone!) so I skipped my speedwork…maybe I was coming down with something

Wednesday – Definitely not just the prednisone, definitely was a bug (blaming it on those two waaaay waaaay way to late nights and probably all of the germs on the plane), lots of upset stomach action, so no swim or ride 😦

Thursday – More bug, stopped taking prednisone. No tempo run.

Friday – Off,  training wise and literally since I took the day off from work. I really should have done at least ONE workout that day, but ended up running a bunch of errands I needed to run, so at least it was a productive day.

Saturday – Still more stomach issues, attempted to hop on the trainer but only made it 30 minutes. No swim either.

Sunday – Determined to get in at least one workout, so I set out get in 10 miles…which turned into a little over 4 miles because I felt so crappy.  My legs just felt weak and my head felt dizzy (maybe a combination of prednisone and stomach bug? who the F knows at this point).

Monday (adding this in since it was a long weekend and I technically made up Saturday’s ride that day) – I had a swim planned, but rode for 2 hours instead (from Saturday’s failed ride), I will do Monday’s swim on Friday day am.

Total Training Hours: 2:30.  Oh Hell. IMWI is three months away.  I need to get my chit together…big time.

Tonight I am going to an actual track for speedwork, I think part of what I struggle with is the loop that I use in a nearby park is kind of hilly and maybe speedwork wouldn’t be so awful on a flat track.  I was originally planning on doing Monday’s swim that I swapped with a trainer ride instead this morning, but, because JMR had to pick me up from urgent care after they gave me that anti-anxiety meds, I had to wait until he left for work since the Urgent care was close to his work.  The goal is to get in ALL of my workouts this week, on the days that they are planned (well except the swim).

Happy Tuesday 🙂

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