Wednesday, January 30, 2008

OOPS - retraction

AK does 20 minutes of core and stretching 7 days a week for a TOTAL OF 2:20 A WEEK.
A bit of the reaction from my guess work....

Sunday, January 27, 2008

All about timing!

Yesterday I just finished my first brick of the year and it started to snow the second I got back home. It was a great finish to a week that felt a little weak in training. I took 2 days off in a row one scheduled and one work just got in the way of and I couldn’t find or wanted to find the time to reschedule. However, today was a great payoff, felt steady on both the swim and the run.

The swim, after warmup laps I wanted to do 75% for 22 laps and 90% for 2, then back to 75% effort for the last 10 minutes. I felt great and was trying to lap the guy swimming next to me, which you shouldn’t do! But he was young and well built so I couldn’t help it : ) At lap 23 I jumped up to 90% and could really feel the core training from the last month pay off. Felt like work, but when I went back down in pace recovering was quick and I didn’t feel like I pulled more out of the bank than I had.

Time from swim to run was about 8-10 minutes, ran out from the gym to Golden Gardens. Running out that way is pretty flat and I usually use for tempo runs or quick easy run days. Today I was looking for a good pace, steady, but not fast. Half marathon speed plus 15-20 seconds a mile. Out and back is a good solid 6 miles.

I tell you what I like on a good run in bad weather, seeing other runners wave or give the “California head nod”. That split second of passing by each other that says: “Like a little snow was suppose to stop us.”, “It’ll have to rain harder than this”, “ We’re both surviving”, “This isn’t the first or the last”. Be which ever applies at the time, it’s always great to train in sweet fine gorgeous weather. However, there’s nothing like being out in the worst storm of the month or year and looking over at a passing car or coffee store window and seeing people shaking their head at you, with the same thought pouring from their eyes,” YOU’RE FREAK’IN NUTS!” Something about that???

Total week’s totals…..

3 runs 16.22 miles 2.02 hours
3 swims 1.78 miles 1.25 hours
1* bike 14 miles 59 minutes
1 other – core and upper body 30 minutes
8 workouts in 7 days 4.75 hours

AK’s running week
5 runs 16 miles
5 core/stretching 1:30 hours

*SO about a week ago I finally got the new road bike that I’ve been wanting for this next years races. With the weather we’ve been having it’s been a little hard to get out and give it a really good road test. On Monday I got home early from work and took it for a spin. The first thing that came to mind was ‘ damn I’m out of shape’ and the second thing was ‘I can’t be on this bike and be out of shape’ so I’ll park her or him until the end of February when I can bring the right level of fitness and respect to a carbon bike. And believe me it will be so worth it…..

This morning it's sunny and mostly clear and AK and I headed out for a quick run to Carkeek Park and back. Sunny, but frozen in some parts. Kind of how I felt after yesterdays brick : )

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Turning point..

I was thinking the other day, actually during the Nookachamps race, when the course ran between two cattle barns, how I got to this point. The smell of wet manure and tractor exhaust filling the lungs, always takes me right back to the ranch I grow up on. I started thinking of how far from there the roads have reached and all that’s happened since growing up there. I was mostly thinking of this because it was the crest of the first big hill and I needed to cover the thought of ‘just walk, just walk, just walk’. I guess it goes back to AK running Kona, way back in the day and I tagged along just to keep her company. Our first couple of runs from the house to the local PCC and back, I think that was a round trip of 2.2 miles. Along that time we raced in our first event at a YMCA 5K that TK and Shell belonged to. I think I did 29:58, dying and out of breath. I believe also that was when I realized I had asthma, funny how that just jumped up out of nowhere.

That was 5(?) years ago maybe? Hard to tell, I guess I could dig through old run journals or better yet look through the pile of race shirts. I really can’t imagine what road I’d be on or how much more of the couch I’d take up if AK wasn’t brave enough to take the first steps to Kona way back when. It’s funny how the smallest gestures or decisions can completely change your course and reinvent what you thought you could do.

This year my goals are just out of reach from last years goals and that’s the thing that keeps me moving from one workout to the next. Just like my first time snowboarding. I had such a blast because I had this mantra in my head of ‘ I’m not suppose to be good at this ‘, and I have to keep that mantra to some extent this season in training. I’m not use to this extra 25%-30% increase in workouts, but then again I’m not suppose to be, but I will. I read on another blog this girl said about herself, ’I was in amazing shape last season, but that shape won’t survive this years races’. And I couldn’t agree with her more…..

This weeks totals…

3 runs – 11.05 miles
3 swims – 1.94 miles
1 core – 30 mintues

Was feeling a bit run down and with everyone at work dropping like flies I took it a little easy.

5 runs – 16 miles (sweet!)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

What are you thinking?

So I was looking around online at upcoming races and came across the Austin 70.3 Ironman. How cool would that be? The date is Oct. 5, so it comes right at the end of this years tri season for myself. My goal for next year was to be ready for a 70.3 at Lake Stevens, but you know, this would be cool too! I'd be up to racing at Olympic distance at least twice by then (hopefully)! I'd have Black Hills and Kirkland back to back weekends then three weeks for the Austin race. SO tempting!!! What to do, what to do. I guess this would be as good as any time to do it.

Back to this weeks training. AK is tearing up her weekly runs and pounding out 5 nights of running a week. I'm impressed, and trying to keep up! It's so much easier though with knowing that when you feel like bagging on a workout, that there's someone to help kick you out of the house and push you down the road. I got in a few really good runs and workouts, but I'm really happy with 2 strong swims I've had this week. No biking yet, George still has a flat that I need to get to. Which reminds me, our friend Eileen said she was signing up for the STP (Seattle to Portland ) sweet! That would be a great ride to do some year and of course give a holler when you get to your training rides.

Also, the Tour of California just posted it's roster for the upcoming race. Still time to get some time off work, rent a RV and camp out in the Altamont Pass and run with riders ....
So I'll be thinking about Austin and trying to figure it out by the end of next week or before it sells out.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Team Cannoli at Nookachamps

With ribbons in hand, Team Cannoli walks away with two podium finishes from Saturdays Nookachamps race. AK and Lil'K showed up not just to watch the swans, but to throw the hammer down..... grr arg

Monday, January 14, 2008

First race of 08......

OK, running a race and running in a race are two very different things. Saturday was Nookachamps up in Mount Vernon, a really cool no frills race. We got a change to see our good friend Earl - “Hey Earl” AK, Shell and Lil’K ran the 5k: AK placing 4th in her age group and Lil’K placing 2nd in her age group! Way to go!!! TK ran the half marathon in 1:29:52 and I ran the 10k in 44:48. The weather held out great for us and just got a little windy at the end of the half marathon. Lots of birds over head and cows along the course.
Always good to see cows.....

Now about the running “a” race and running “in” a race. Saturday I should have been running in a race and not running a race. I was suppose to use Saturday as more of a tune up and run it some what easy. Instead, I ran too fast with the pack the first two miles, didn’t adjust for the upcoming hills and faded fast with a half mile to go. I knew this might happen about 5 minutes into the race, but didn’t go with my first thought of slowing down. This is something that, besides this last Saturday, I think I’ve really improved on. Especially for the tri’s, pacing has been the overall focus of every workout and race start.

Saturday was an important lesson in that I know the things that I didn’t do that could of made for a really fun race.
1. Know what your running for: Fun/Tune up/PR
2. Know your pace time that you should be running at.
This is where I did the most damage in the race, for the time I wanted I just needed to run at a 6:58 pace. In training runs of 7 and 8 miles I’ve averaged 7:10, so 6:58 should have been pretty easy for 6.2 miles. However, my first mile was around 6:38 and second about 6:42, much too fast for a 10K for myself. I finished at 7:12 ave.
3. Pack all your race gear and check it off the list. I forgot my Gu packet. A little thing about the size of a ketchup packet that holds about 100 calories that you take before and/or during a race for a little shot of energy.

All in all it could have been worse, but it was a great reminder of how import game plans are for all races. And that I can’t just show up at a race and run at my limit and be happy with the out come. If I’d of paid attention in the early part of the race on Saturday I never would have had to run at my limit for almost half the race and could of saved it for the last half mile. And most likely would have had a better time, on the course and on the time clock.

Last weeks numbers…

Six workouts in 7 days
3 Runs – 13.53 miles / 1.73Hrs
1 Swim - .62 miles / 30 Min
2 Other – 1.08 hours: core workouts

Down from last week, but work really got in the way last week a lot. Should be better about leaving work at work this week. Also, I’ll try to post some photos from Nookachamps tonight and a quick shout out to Spangler, ‘ Hey girl, AK and I were running out at Discovery yesterday and waved over to you. Hopefully you were out on your bike somewhere……..

Thursday, January 10, 2008

It's only Thrusday.....

This week of training has gone pretty well. A great swim on Wednesday morning and a cool run with AK in the PM after work with just the right speed for the week. On Monday I went to Discovery Park during lunch and had a really good run in some actual sun! And rain. And wind. And sun again!?! OK, it is Seattle... I forget how lucky I am sometimes that I can knock off 4.5 miles at a park like Discovery and be back at my desk in under an hour.

AK is out in the night right now putting in another 3-4 miles on Phinney Ridge. Team Cannoli, our NW group of west and east side family, have Nookachamps race coming up this weekend. TK doing the half marathon, I'm doing the 10k and AK and Lil'K doing the 5k. Should be a fun run for us all.

This week with work has seemed to go on forever and I can't believe it's only Thursday, I'm sure there's some reason I need to work from home tomorrow!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

One week down.....

First week of training out of the way and in the books. Sunday night is a good night for looking back on the weeks goals and seeing what needs to be worked, what worked well and what was accomplished. That lasts about 30 minutes and then you have to start sizing up the next weeks schedule.

This weeks numbers:

2 core workouts 50 -60 minutes on upper body and core
2 runs - 10.75 (one tempo and one run)
1 Half mile swim - freezing water
1 spin class - first and maybe last of the year. Inside RT knee still sore from

Total: 6 workouts in seven days.

The goal will be to hit 7-8 steady workouts a week and stay steady on weight and energy. This year I'm heading into training at my best weight in the last 3 years, six pounds down from last years start. This will help in the bike for sure.

Speaking of the bike. I've been looking into getting a new bike to replace George as my race bike. I'll still have George as my commuter bike and general use backup. However, I had been test riding this little Kuota Karma at Speedy Reedy , really nice bike. And that was feeling like the next ride, but then I stopped by Gregg's Cycle and hopped on a new Trek. From a fun bike to improve on to a tool that demands improvement. The only downside was the 5 month wait for the back order that I figured was OK because I would receive a week before my first tri this year. I was ready for that, no questions asked, then I get a call saying it will be closer to 4 weeks. SWEET! This means I have about three weeks to get back in shape for the bike.
It's always about incentive......

Friday, January 4, 2008

Back on track...

After some weeks of base training the last 4 weeks, even with the holidays, I feel like I'm back on track and ready with a full training schedule ahead. This weeks workouts I'll post on Sunday night. However, 5 workouts with 2 more scheduled seems like I am getting back up to speed alright.

First swim yesterday after 4 weeks off. Everything felt great except the water was a cool 64-68 degrees. First two laps felt like my arms were on fire??? Crazy! I stayed in long enough to hit a half mile and I had to get out. All the brain freeze with no ice cream. I sat in the hot tub for about 3 minutes thinking that was cold to0, it was 115, I just couldn't feel it.

Swimming is my main focus this year, hence starting training in January instead of March like last year. I figure if you come out of the water feeling like you just survived, the bike will just take your legs from you and the run will punish you. So for Olympic distance I have to be at the point were I come out of the water feeling like I just got out of bed and jumped on my bike. Well close too anyway.

So swimming yesterday and a cycling class after work. Knee started hurting during the class and I should of stopped because it still has a ache to it today. I have to mention my run on Wednesday night. AK and I headed out around 6pm up Phinney Ridge and it was just coming down in buckets. The kind were you stop avoiding puddles and just push up your sleeves and run hard into the darkness. It was great! You feel like you've survived something afterwards. I had a scheduled tempo run and just felt destroyed when I got back to the house, might have been my AM core workout talking, but it was fun!

So all in all back on track...

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Be the engine....

So I took yesterday to think about the events that will be “A’s” and “B’s”, it was a little harder than I thought it would be. Especially for the Federal Way Tri, Sprint or 1st Olympic Distance? I placed 11th last year and placing top 10 would totally ROCK!, but it also seems like the best and safest Oly to do as my 1st at that distance. I came away with listing it as my 1st Oly, because I figured this year is about pushing farther into the Olympic mind frame. It’d be great to place top 10 in the sprint, but not at the loss of missing the experience of the Olympic distance before the Black Hills Tri, which will be my “A” race.

“A” races:
Mercer Island Half
SuperJock n Jill 4 mile
SeaFair Half Marathon
Black Hills Tri Olympic
Victoria Half Marathon

Issaquah Triathlon
Seafair Triathlon
Federal Escape Triathlon
Beaver Lake Triathlon ( Yes, back to the Beaver and the little hill at mile 8 )
Kirkland Triathlon

Today I was cleaning up my desktop and found a letter from AK’s aunt that talked about her grandmother that just past away this last month. I was lucky enough to have met her twice and share stories with her, most recently this past summer in Chicago. In the letter she says that a saying her mother said and lived by was “Be the engine, not the caboose”. I think that’s a great mantra for this upcoming season. “Be the engine, not the caboose”

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

HELLO 2008!!!!!!

We've been waiting for 2008 to get here and get 2007 over with and out of our system. We both finished up last year with 400 miles ea, down a bit from last year and the year before. AK due to injury and myself due to focusing on the bike and swim more. Also, leading into 2007 I completely burned myself out on running, at the worst possible time. 5 weeks before the Phoenix RNR Marathon. I only ran my long runs and one three mile run in between each week. Crossing the 25 mile mark I had the mantra "1.2 and no running for 2 " (months) I lasted about 6 weeks and got back up and running when I needed to start training for the up coming tri's. Last years events rocked, I placed higher than the year before and could see and feel the training pay off. I placed 11th overall in the Federal Way sprint and nailed the Kirkland tri course. Kirkland was my "A" race and I hit my goal of placing in the top 100 and doing the bike course in under 40 minutes - "SWEET!" I had AK there cheering me on through T1 and T2. The bike leg was probably the highlight of my 2007 events. "George and I (my bike) threw everything we had at it and geared perfectly through all the turns and grades, just about redlining to the crest of every hill then cranking it up for the big downhills, no rest, tuck and pedal. Had to be the best ever so far....

The goals for this year are pretty simple:
  • Be a better runner instead of a lazy one
  • Train and make it through two Olympic distance triathlons
  • Really enjoy the local support of the running and triathlon community
  • Push past all the standards I've set for myself
Well gotta run, can't start off this new year sitting around in my PJ's till noon. Oops, well then at least not until one......