Thursday, September 29, 2011

I'm Officially Half an Ironman!

Saturday was my big debut at the Half Ironman distance during the Redman Triathlon in Oklahoma City!

More details to come as I continue to decompress from the race.  It wasn't nearly as miserable as I thought it would be and the course is a great beginner friendly course.  The volunteers and spectators were awesome!

I finished 4th in the Athena division and approx. 128 out of 168 women. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

50 Miles with the ladies

A few weeks ago on September 11th I had my final big training ride before my half ironman.  I met up with the Team HCWDI crew.  HCWDI stands for Holy Crap We Did It! and is a great group of friends that I sometimes train with. 

On this weekend, we ran into storm chances on Saturday that led to postponing the brick workout until Sunday.  I was travelling on Sunday and had time constraints which meant I could only fit in the bike ride.  The group was made up of Mark and Cord and then for the ladies it was Pauline, Kayle and myself.  Mandy was going to ride with us but she was sick and had to skip out. 

The ladies were ready to go before the guys so we headed out.  Our plan was to do a couple out and backs to hit 3 1/2 hours on the bike.  The route we selected was fairly flat like we would get on our goal race.  The morning was a little chilly but was gorgeous and sunny.  Our turnaround spot was at 16 miles so we headed back and stopped at a gas station for a potty stop.  While we were at the gas station I made a dumb move and walked my bike backwards.  The clips on my pedals swung up and sliced up my leg.  All of a sudden, my leg was bleeding pretty badly.  I went into the gas station and got some gauze and the ever helpful duct tape to craft a makeshift bandage.  We still had 30 miles to go after all!

Impromptu bandage!
Wounded at mile 22 and still bleeding after 30 more miles
The guys caught up to us while we are the gas station tending to my wound.  We were still waiting for the bathroom to free up which had us extremely worried.  No one likes to use a restroom after someone has been in it for a long time! After a few more minutes, we finally were all able to get my leg wrapped in duct tape so that the bandage would stay on for my ride.  I thanked the gas station attendant for the help and made sure to make a purchase on our next stop there an hour later. 

For the remainder of our ride, we picked some out and back additions so that we would hit our time goals.  I ended up with 52 miles in just under 3 1/2 hours and was pretty pleased with the ride.  I didn't have any time to run after and instead had to rush home to get ready for my work trip. 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

It's Been A While

Hey blog friends! It's been a few weeks since my last post.  I had a crazy busy week after labor day and then spent most of last week on a trip for work.  I'm slowly catching up on my blog reading and I'm going to try to get back to posting on a regular basis.

This weekend was very rainy which required some changes to my training plan.  I'm one week out from my half Ironman and in the midst of taper down for the race.  I wanted to get a good bike ride in this weekend but the rain got in the way of that.  I instead got my bike on by using the indoor trainer for 2 hours.  I'm so lucky to have won a CycleOps Jet Fluid Pro Trainer from Steve in a Speedo a few months ago.  That trainer makes all the difference in being able to do longer trainer rides. 

I found a movie on the Lifetime Movie Network that was interesting enough but didn't require much thought to follow along.  I took it easy for the majority of the ride but used the commercial breaks to go into a harder gear for seated climbs.  Just before the hour mark on the bike my lawn care guy showed up out of the blue.  I missed the guys the last time they were at the house but mainly he was stopping by to see how fast the grass was growing now that the temps are cooling off.  I was planning a stop at the hour so it was perfect timing.

While I was off the bike, I took the time to fill up a glass with some water since I was thirsty and then I headed back to the bike.  I had stocked a bar stool next to the bike with the TV remote, my cell phone, drinks, and snacks.  I got a little bored and texted a friend of mine who is also doing the same half ironman next week.  I asked her how long she did her trainer ride and had a nice text chat for a few minutes.  She mentioned that she was doing a brick and provided me with the motivation to do a brick too.  I've been slacking in the bricks this training cycle and it was good to get a reminder on how important they are.

I finished up with 2 hours on the bike and then headed out for a short run.  I purposely left my Garmin at home and just ran by feel.  I wasn't planning for the run so I had to throw on a more supportive sports bra on top of my comfy tank with a non-supportive shelf bra.  My run route had some fun hills but luckily I got more downhill than uphill.  I also managed to beat the rain for most of the run but wouldn't you know it really started to come down right when I got to my street and had the 1/3 mile hill from h*ll to finish.  I won't lie I just can't manage this hill so I considered it a cooldown and walked it in!

Sunday was back to the indoor pool for the Sunday Swim Crew! I love my swim crew and today was another fun workout.  I modified the workout slightly so that it wasn't quite as long and was more taper like.  Our main set was supposed to be 6 x 375 which went  like this 100, 25, 100, 25, 100, 25.  Sets 1 and 4 were stroke on the 25s, 2 and 5 were kick, and 3 and 6 were pull.  I did the first 3 sets complete and then switched to 275's for the final 3 with 200 free and 75 stroke, kick, pull.  We finished this off with 2 x 50 sprints.  My goal was to hit 52 sec on the 50's and I surprised myself by hitting right around 40 sec.  Not bad!!! We finished off the workout by hanging out in the hot tub for a few minutes. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Weekend Recap

I hope you all had a great Labor Day weekend.  I took a few days to go visit my sister and her family.  My sister and brother-in-law are training for their first sprint triathlon.  They are doing the Tie Dye Tri which I have done the past two years.  Instead of racing that this year, I am doing the Redman Half Iron distance race.  It works out great since my race is on Saturday and their race is on Sunday so we can have a family triathlon race weekend! Only 3 weeks to go and I think we are all feeling a little nervous!

This trip, I took my bike with me so that we could get some training in together.  I had a 50 mile ride on deck for Saturday.  Lindsey investigated local bike routes and she and I headed out at 7AM to do a 23 mile loop.  The route was really pretty with rolling hills.  We saw a couple of small groups but for the most part had the area to ourselves.  When we got back, I refilled my water bottles and changed partners.  Next up was Tim's turn to ride with me.

Tim and I headed out to do the same course in reverse.  We hit our first red light and Tim asked if we could run it...I of course said no (law abiding citizen award for me!) We hit the next major light and out of nowhere we were surrounded by a group of 15-20 cyclists.  It was super funny and we ended up on the same route as the group for the first 8 miles or so.  That ended up as an aggressive and hilly 8 miles that tuckered me out for the next 8.  I paid for those aggressive hills with a couple of lackluster miles until a pit stop for some Gatorade.  I had to teach my brother in law another important lesson...always fill up your bottles if you can at a gas station.  You never know if you'll make a wrong turn...don't worry we didn't make any wrong turns!

Tim and I added on a couple of miles so that I hit 48 miles total. He was able to get me to run a red light on campus that was at a stop walk with no pedestrians anywhere near (law breaking citizen award, boo!)  I thought 48 hilly miles was equal to 50 flat so I called it good for the day.  Sadly, I didn't have any motivation to run off the bike so I called it a day.  Bad triathlete...hopefully I'll make up for that with some shorter bricks over the next few weeks.

Sunday morning I headed out with Lindsey to do a long run.  We met up with her running buddies on campus.  We did about 8 miles together on one of their routes.  One of Lindsey's buddies usually runs the last few miles with her dog Dandy.  Lindsey and I ran Pennie home to pick up Dandy and then they came back to campus with us to hit 12 miles.  We were going to walk the mile home but I got to thinking about chocolate milk during mile 12 and couldn't imagine how long it would take to walk mile 13.  We ended up doing a 2 min run/walk combo over that mile.  This got us to just over a half marathon for the day! It was more than I had planned to run but definitely will help boost my confidence over the next few weeks. 

It's so fun to see Lindsey and Tim train for their first triathlon.  I am so lucky that they have been part of my cheering squad for the last 3 seasons and I can't wait to pay them back by cheering for their first one!