Friday, March 11, 2011

BUSY BEE!!!!!!!!!!

The word “busy” is an understatement.  My days begin with a 4:55 am wake up call, and on most days I I get home between 7 pm at the earliest, and as late as 10 pm if I work out after work  as well.  Somehow manage to fit all my training in, but what is suffering is my sleep and really any other type of quality/chill time. There is just not enough hours in a day!
With that said, I am really enjoying my new job! I like the job itself, I get the flexibility I need, and I really like the people I work with.  I also get to travel quite a bit, which is awesome! I am going to Europe – Germany, Czech Republic, and Sweden next week, and I’ll be there for a total of 11 days. I’ll get to see my family while I am there, which ROCKS!  It really can’t get much better than that.  While I am super excited, I am also a bit uneasy about my training or the lack there of while I will be gone. I will make sure I get my running in, I do plan on swimming at least while I am at home (I should be able to squeeze in 3 swims), but I will NOT have my bike with me, and that freaks me out! My power is just getting to the point of where it was towards the end of the season a year ago, and I am ready to take it beyond that! BUT – 11 days of no bike?  What is going to happen when I get back?  I am not ready to take steps back, but would obviously rather move forward!  Duh! J I really just don’t want to lose the fitness I have gained so far!
There is also a lot more that has happened in the little triathlon world of mine. I will blog about all these in more detail as soon as I get a chance – maybe on the plane to Europe next week?  But for now this is what you have to look forward to:
·         I got a new toy – new super awesome, and super fast bike!  I can’t wait to take it outside! Name is still TBD, and I am taking suggestions …

·         My coach chased me to back to back personal bests in the pool – 1:23 and 1:26 for 100 yards! I know – slow for some of you but super fast for me and especially due to my recent struggles in the pool … my previous pb was 1:29 from back in November …

·         Aaaaaaand I am switching triathlon teams. I have been working with coach Jorge since June last year and have seen tremendous improvements across all three sports. My endurance has come a long way, and it still has a long way to go.  I am sticking with coach Jorge as he is launching his very own triathlon team – E3 Training Solutions.  For more details about the team, Czech out Jorge’s post:

There will be a lot more to come about E3, but here is your chance to jump on board with one of the best! J

·         Non triathlon related – I will also be moving and leaving the city life behind me! It’s been fun, but it’s time to move on. It’s time to move closer to my work so that I can actually have time to sleep and pay attention to other things besides work/triathlon.  I currently spend anywhere around 3+ hours a day commuting, and I don’ t like it! My ass doesn’t like it! I really HATE it! Move should be finalized shortly, and I”ll share pics and info with all of you so you can come visit! I plan on setting up a nice training cave! J
Thanks for reading, and I hope to update you all with some more detail very soon. That plane trip is only 7 days away – just a day after the triathlon expo time trial, where I’ll test my power (bike power) against the best – the likes of Karen Smyers and the list goes on ....

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Quick update and Hyannis 1/2 marathon

It sure has been a while since I last blogged! One main reason being, I now have a job again! The days when I could just fit in 3 workouts a day and still be able to sleep 8+ hours are over! My life of a pro triathlete wanna be is done – at least for now. My mission however continues! J

My new routine that I am trying to get into ROCKS!!!!! Or maybe not so much as 4:55 am alarm clock every morning comes way too fast! I get in either my bike or swim workouts done before I leave for work around 7 am. My commute to and from work can be anywhere from an hour and 15 min to 2 hours depending on the traffic! My bum hurts and my eyes cringe as I am typing the word “traffic”.  Then if I can’t squeeze my run in at lunch, I end up running when I get home which is usually after 7 pm, and the rest is history. Pack the bags for the next day, and do it all over again. Then there are days like today, when you just want to scream!!!!!!! I really just wanted to get to work on time but the idiot with the blue camry had other plans!

Needles to say, I made it to work an hour late after the lady behind me left!

Few things I learned today:

·         Meter maids in Boston only work when they want to! They give tickets 10 minutes after midnight for a registration that just expired on previous day, they will write you a ticket if you are 30 seconds after your meter expired, but when over 50% of the car is parked on a side walk all night and morning, they do not care!

·         A car even though illegally parked cannot be towed without a ticket or else whoever calls to tow the car has to pay $75!!!!!

·         It takes Boston police at least an hour to switch shifts, so if you are up to no good, anytime between 7 am and 8am is the time to do it! Just Czech your nearest Dunking Donuts!

·         Next time – I may not be as patient!!!!!!

·         And finally, I would really LOVE to meet the dumbass that “moved” my car into the SUV behind me even though I had my parking brake on, and then proceeded to back their car into me but still ended up being parked half way on the sidewalk! What was the rational behind their move?

Needles to say, weekends can’t come fast enough, which finally brings me to the Hyannis Half Marathon I ran this past weekend!

It was my first open half marathon ever, and even though I should have been excited to test my running fitness, I really wasn’t all that into it. The timing really just couldn’t be any worse. I had just started my new job 2 weeks ago, travelled much of the 1st week, and spend the rest of the time trying to go to bed at a normal hour so that the 4:55 am (not 5:00 am) wake up call, doesn’t scare the crap out of me too much. I had just finally gotten rid of a cold, and so my energy levels weren’t exactly there. I mean what should I expect after 2 weeks of consistently getting anywhere between 5-6 hours of sleep. The weather forecast wasn’t exactly favorable, and all I wanted to do was sleep in! Not this Sunday.

Good thing was, the 7 am wakeup call actually felt like sleeping in! The weather condition however made me want to go back to bed! It wouldn’t be winter 2011 if we didn’t have another snow storm! In any case, I had my usual breakfast – bagel with almond butter and jelly roughly about 3 hours before the race start and then drove down to the Cape with my friend Rod. We got to Hyannis about an hour before the race, but the last stretch proved to be deadly! We ended up parking almost a mile away from the start so we could even make it to the start line on time. The start was about a mile away.  Minor glitch was – we didn’t have our numbers yet! My friend Jim picked them up for us but we didn’t find him till about 5 min before the race started! Being a rookie, I kept wondering, where the timing chip was, and since I thought they didn’t give us one, I started to think more and more that this race is just going to turn into a training run.

The race had close to 4,500 participants between the 10K, ½ marathon, and full marathon so the start was quite crowded. The weather itself really couldn’t be any better – you guessed it. It snowed, rained, and snowed on and off again pretty much the entire time except for the last 3 or so miles.  You gotta love running with soaking wet feet!!!! Is it spring yet?

None less my competitive drive and adrenalin took over, and off I went. The 1st mile was a mess of dodging people, and puddles! The plan was to run 7:30s or so for the first 3 miles, then drop it down and settle into race pace at 7:15s, and the last 3 miles bring it home! My running inexperience showed through very quickly! In triathlon by the time you get to the run, people are scattered all over the place and you are not being crowded. You don’t have to negotiate your route, or worry about getting tripped or tripping people. You don’t hear other people’s breath trying to either keep up with you or pass you. Since my first mile ended up being an easy 7:40, I decided to speed up … to hell with 7:30’s why not sub 7:10s!!!! Miles 2 through 7 were awesome! I wasn't really pushing the pace (okay – maybe a little bit), I was feeling great and I was running just below my targeted 7:15s. I only looked at my watch when I heard the beep! I kept seeing sub 7:10s and I was still feeling great.  I felt AWESOME and began to have thoughts of actually running sub 1:35!  

Then Mile 8 came, and my legs just decided to quit! I was in the hurt locker for the rest of the day. I was just trying to hold on! When I saw mile 8 click of at 7:30 pace, my positive attitude took turn for the worse! I started to play mind games with myself, and I tried to focus on the positive. I “tried” to follow a girl that went by me or at least keep her in my sights, but that didn’t last long! There were few rollers on the back end of this course – nothing major at all, but those bumps hurt! And no – you really can’t even call them hills! The mind games continued … It was at about mile 11 or so when we went by the BTT tent again, and that is where coach Jorge was! It was the last 3 miles when it was time to suck it up and as he put it go "nuts". He ran with me for a few yards, and yes – that actually gave me a bit of energy to try to go faster, but unfortunately that didn’t last long.  I went "nuts" but my splits didn't quite show it! No excuses, just a statement here – at this point my feet were soaking wet, and frozen, and my legs were hurting! My right quad and left calf felt like they were both about to cramp up, and I really couldn't wait to be done. I tried to keep telling myself that I feel GREAT, but my legs just didn't want to listen. I was pushing hard, but my damn legs were not moving. Totally 100% my fault and looking back at it now – STUPID, STUPID, STUPID mistake, I didn’t take in any nutrition at all. I was running out of energy fast! I was going to take a gel at about the 1 hour mark which is what I normally do on long training runs, but I didn't do my homework and had no idea where the water stops where. The idea of actually spilling any water on my frozen self was enough to make me run the entire race without taking any fuel in! Just call me STUPID!!!!! I could have used the extra kick for the last 3 miles to say the least.

I went through 13.1 miles at 1:35:45, but my official time is 1:36:20 (13.2 miles from my garmin) so roughly around 7:18, 7:17 pace.

Overall, as much as I was dragging the race, and it wasn’t the greatest timing, I am very glad I did it. I learned a few things, and I will never NOT fuel again! I mean I held on to that freaking gel long enough!!!!

I spent the winter really just building up my mileage while running at an EZ (7:45 – 8:00) pace. I have yet to do any speedwork, and last time I ran remotely close to my avg. pace was back in November in Clearwater. I believe as I keep running more and build my mileage, I should be able to keep the sub 7:10 pace for the entire race and one day I will be running sub 7s – I know it!  There is more work to be done folks and I am ready to take my running to the next level. J

As far as my splits go you can see, I hit a wall at mile 8 - gigantic wall, but I am happy that I let my pace slip to 7:20s and 7:30s and not any further. You can also see I kept trying to pick up the pace, but really wasn’t able to hold it for very long hence the toggle between 7:30s and 7:20s. Like I said – I was trying to speed up.
Mile 1: 7:40
Mile 2: 7:10
Mile 3: 7:04
Mile 4: 7:10
Mile 5: 7:09
Mile 6: 7:08
Mile 7: 7:06
Mile 8: 7:30
Mile 9: 7:22
Mile 10: 7:24
Mile 11: 7:30
Mile 12: 7:20
Mile 13: 7:32
Mile 14: 6:32

And how did I compare to the rest of the peeps?

Overall:             246th place out of 2,689 (Top9%)
Females:           60th out of 1,156 (Top 5%)
Females 30-39:  19th out of 456 (Top 4.5%)

And if we went by the triathlon age groups:

Females 30-34: 11th out of 245 (Top 4%)

And because I can, there were 54 30 year old chicks competing and I came in 3rd! J

Sub 1:30 I am gunning for you! For now, I pretend like my legs are fine, when I can barely straighten them! My quads and hammies are garbage and I strongly dislike the foam roller or really anything else that is suppose to help speed up the recovery proces! I am living in the my awesome Zoot Recovery Tights!  Till next time! J