About Me

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Hi, I'm Whitney! I am a middle of the pack runner who discovered the fun of triathlons in 2009. Join me in my adventures in life and training. I run with the Rush Running team and enjoy the fun that comes with such a supportive group of friends who understand what running means to me. I'm newly discovering road biking and the fun that it entails.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Rocking the Workout Ladder

This week has been extra hectic and I barely had any time to get to the pool.  Fast forward to today and I had only swam twice this week.  That just wouldn't do so I headed to the gym after work for a swim.  I haven't been swimming inside since the outdoor pool has been open so it was a little funny to be walking into the gym again.

I had a new swimsuit to wear today. I ordered this suit last week and was really surprised to see all the skulls on it when it arrived.  I still like the design because it's a perfect combo of black and pink! With a suit like this I knew I could handle a tough after work swim.

TYR Female Training Suit - Rockstar TRCB7

I got into the water and the shock of the cool temps was initially surprising.  The outdoor pool is definitely warmer than this!  I got started with my favorite warmup.  It's a 1000 yd ladder that starts with a 400 yd easy swim.  Next is a 300 yd drills section.  I swim the drills section as 25 drill, 25 free, 25 drill x 4 covering each of the four strokes.  For the 200 yd section I will break out my pull buoy and do some pull.  I finish with 100 yd kick set.  I don't worry about the time during any of the warmup.  My goal is just to swim relaxed and focus on doing flip turns throughout the warmup.

Today for my main set I decided to do another ladder.  I wanted to get in around 1000 yds so that I would end up over 2000 yds for the day.  Here's what I came up with:

1 x 200 yd Free
2 x 150 yd Pull
3 x 100 yd (Swim stroke for the interval ie 1st = 25 fly, 75 free, 2nd = 25 free, 25 back, 50 free, 3rd = 50 free, 25 breast, 25 free)
4 x 50 yd (Free/Back)
6 x 25 yd Free

Since I had been out of the pool so much this week I was very generous with the rest times.  I especially gave myself plenty of time on the 25's to recover and it helped so that my final sprints were my fastest.  I ended with another 150 yds for cool down to finish at 2300 yds.

I enjoy doing ladder workouts because I'm able to increase my intensity over the course of the workout.  While the effort increases, the distance is decreasing on each rep so somehow it doesn't feel quite as daunting.  The variety is also fun and it's easy to track my distance.

What do you think about workout ladders?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Congratulations to Debbie from at Healthy Running Mom on winning the Thorlos sock prize pack.

Let's hope that your new Thorlos keep your feet healthy and happy through all your training efforts!

Free Pair Of More Casual Comfort Socks
If you didn't win, visit the Thorlo website for their offer to try a pair of socks.  You just pay for shipping and handling.  Thanks to all for entering!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Tour de Fun

This weekend was the annual Tour de Fun cycling festival to benefit Teen Action and Support Center in Rogers.  TASC is an organization focused on helping teens and the Tour de Fun is their only public fundraisers to support their mission.





The Tour de Fun offers several different distances and each year I have increased my distance so it wasn't a shocker that I was easily talked into signing up for the 100K distance.  I had done some 3 hour and 3 1/2 hour training rides so I figured as long as we took it easy it would be manageable.  The hills were something that I was worried about though! I'm not a fast hill climber and for this ride I didn't need to be fast I just needed to make it up and over quite a few hills! 

The route is in an area that I don't normally ride.  The opening 10 miles or so are on a busy-ish highway that heads out to one of the main marinas on Beaver Lake.  It includes an almost immediate climb...why warmup when you just warmup as you climb a monster of a hill!  I was a little surprised to see a few people stopped and either walking or working on bikes on this hill.  We were maybe 3 miles into the ride and there would be a lot more hills ahead.  

I rode with a group of friends of varying abilities.  It was tough to stay together with all the rollers but we did the best that we could to stay in pairs.  Two friends were doing the 50K which would split off around mile 11 at the first rest stop.  The remaining four (Mark and Pauline and Mandy and I) of us would be in for the full 100K.  We had no time ambitions and just enjoyed ourselves on the ride.  We decided to call ourselves Team MoFo...we had two Moe's since Mark and Pauline's last name shortens down to Moe so then Mandy and I made up the Fo.  We got Mo hills and Fo Sure we got em done!

 Here's some pictures from our day!

Rest stop 1 before splitting into 50K and 100K groups

Rest stop 2

Rest stop 3 in the shade! 
Rest stop 4
Definitely a Tough Chik after finishing! 
Overall, it was a great course...challenging but great.  The roads were fairly safe with most of the traffic providing ample room when passing.  The rest stops were well stocked and all of the volunteers were amazing and so helpful.  The hills were definitely challenging but nothing that couldn't be managed.  I found that the further we got in the distance the sooner I would drop to my granny gear on the climbs.  There was just one hill where I had to say a few choice words as I was ascending.  It was just stifling hot and such a long climb but I made it to the top and then everything was good again.  I rode with Mark for a lot of the ride and after our last climb he pointed out that we just had a few cool down miles to the finish.  Somehow he and I have very different definitions of cool down since he started to hammer out 20mph speeds and I had no choice but to stick to his wheel.  I was shocked to still have some leg speed in me at that point but we were on a nice flat road and it actually felt good to hammer for a little while.  

The race starts and finishes in downtown Rogers which has cobblestone streets.  Not my favorite to ride on but as we finished I just wanted to hit the finish line! After we finished we headed to a local Mexican restaurant and we all were starving.  All in all a great way to spend a Saturday morning! 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Lesson Learned

Last night I learned a very important cycling lesson...always wear your sunglasses!

We headed out on our group ride and it was beautiful and sunny.  Towards the end of the ride though it was getting later in the evening and the shadows were starting to blend into the shade as the sun got closer to setting.  I did something that I've done many times before...I tucked my sunglasses into my jersey so that I could see better in the lower light.

One mile from the finish of our ride, I watched almost in slow motion as a bug flew into my eye (it was the size of a Japanese beetle but I don't know what the bug actually was.)  It hit right on the eye and was a pretty solid hit.  I rubbed my eye slightly and thought nothing more of it.  After we finished up the ride a couple of us headed out for dinner.  My friend looked at me and commented that I had a broken blood vessel in my eye.  I didn't believe her and had to run into the bathroom to check for myself.  Sure enough, the sight below greeted me.

This morning it was even worse.  Luckily there isn't much pain with it just a slightly swollen feeling to my eye. From my research, it seems like it will take a while for it to heal up and go away.  I did call my eye doctor and they said to come in if there is pain associated with the injury.  The doctor's team recommended a warm compress so I'll do that tonight and in the future I'll keep those sunglasses on!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Thorlos Happy Feet / Speedy Feet Giveaway

Recently our local Thorlos sales rep attended one of our Rush Hour track workouts.  They provided many of the runners with a pair of the Experia socks.  The Experia sock has been ranked by Runner's World as a Most Pillowy sock!  Thorlos is an American made brand whose tag line is "Your Feet will feel better."

Disclosure: I received a free pair of Thorlos socks to review and two pairs to give away to my readers.  I have also purchased Thorlos Experia socks myself and all opinions are my own based on my experience with the product.

Thorlos: Beyond Socks-We are foot Protection
The Thorlo Experia sock is "anatomically engineered for aero-dynamic fit and protection without weight."  Thorlos are a different type of sock...they have a padded sock to protect your foot on impact and also prevent the friction that can lead to blisters.  The socks are made with CoolMax material to be moisture wicking.  The Experia is a lighter weight sock that offers a combination of the cushion in the ball of the foot and the heal while offering a light weight snug fit around the rest of the foot.  I really like the fit of these socks, the material really hugs your foot through the arch.  The sock is a micro-mini crew so it just barely peeks out of your shoe.
Obviously I missed my calling as a sock model! 

I originally bought some Experia socks for the fun colors...I had no idea that I was buying a sock that would protect my feet as well.  I wasn't aware that as we age we lose the fatty pads that help protect our feet as we walk and run.  Below illustrates how the Thorlo padding aligns with your natural foot structure to provide cushioning under those fat pads to absorb the impact.  So in addition to all this great benefit to your feet you can also match your running outfits or shoes with the 15 different colors offered! I usually feel feet fatigue after wearing work shoes that have little structure.  I can see how helpful the cushioning is to help reduce that shock and impact and keep my feet happy.  The cushioning is engineered to help transfer the forces as you walk and run from the fat pads of your foot to the tightly knitted loops of the cushion pads.

Happy Feet matter so that you can have Speedy Feet! Our Thorlo rep attended our track session and that night we focused on a true progression workout.  Give this workout a try next time you are looking to build your aerobic capacity and also work progressively harder in order to train your body to function and process through lactic acid buildup. It was a tough workout and looking back through my data file I was very happy to see that I did execute the progressive build on my pace.  I need to push a little harder to differentiate between 1000m and 800m pace though since those intervals were all pretty close.  I tend to keep a little left in the tank just in case and usually my ending intervals are my strongest.

Thorlos Happy Feet Speedy Feet Progression Track Workout
Warm up - 10-20 minutes at easy pace.

Main Set -
2 x 1000
2 x 800
2 x 400
2 x 200

Run each interval at a progressively faster pace.  Take 1 minute rest between each interval.  The 200's at the end should be at or near your all out pace.  If you are like me, you'll finish feeling a little on the pukey side.  That's okay...that means you were working it!

Cool down - 10 minutes at easy pace

And now for the giveaway...no need to complete the workout to enter but bonus points if you do! One reader will receive two pairs of the Experia micro mini crew sock.  Use the Rafflecopter below to enter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway