Friday, December 18, 2009

Running and running and running

Steve first in his age group (yawn) but getting an award from LaShawn Merritt - now that's cool!

Me running lots lately, recovering well and loving every minute of it. Good to have even alittle bit of that feeling back!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Starting over....again

I won't even talk about promising to blog and then failing to follow through. As has often been my mantra in life - better late than never.
Luray, for the record, totally sucked for me. As it turned out they decided at the last minute to make it a nonwetsuit swim. There was no way I was attempting that swim without my wetsuit floatie. So I wore it and consequently started the bike pretty overheated.
The bike is a pretty darned hilly course. And wouldn't you know that my front derailluer broke about 15 minutes into the first loop. So no big chain ring for me on the significant downhill that made up the backside of the two loop course. But at least I could climb without killing my knees. For some odd reason I decided that a Starbucks double shot on loop two would be a good idea so I had put one in one of my water bottles. I know they say never do anything in a race that you haven't tried in training - but I forgot that they say that. It was really not a very good idea.
When I finished the bike and got off to run my stomach was 'tore up'! My heartrate skyrocketed and I basically walked most of the 10k run.
Horrible day discouraging race. Oh and did I mention the temps got up to about 87 degrees on my second loop of the run.
Supposed to have done Savageman this past weekend to make up for Luray. But I've been sick for two weeks all due to a visit on labor day weekend to the Savageman venue to peruse the bike course in advance.
On my birthday no less, Sept. 5th., I ended up walking up a climb for the first time ever. Apparently at some point during this humiliation a yellowjacket decided to take refuge in my shoe and then decided to sting me. OUCH! I got back on the bike at the top of the hill without even checking for exactly what had bitten/stung me. So it wasn't until about 5 miles later that Steve suggested I stop and see what it was. By then Mr. YJ was squashed.
That night my foot itched so badly I could not sleep. Then I got some sort of flu for about a week - then last week my hands and feet and knee (yes only one) swelled to twice their size.
Steve had a great race at Savageman though, made it up the Westernport Wall and got his brick!
I'm feeling better now - finally! So tomorrow I start my winter plan. The goal of the plan is to figure out just what I have to do to get even one minute faster on a
5k, maybe 7 miutes on a 10k since I'd like to break an hour!
More to come on that. In the meantime - update done - finally. The pic is from our Savageman perusal - I was appalled at the shortness of my shorts in this picture. Steve insists that is is really my legs that are the problem - they're too long. Either way....geez...

Friday, July 24, 2009

Fun - Training - Oxymoron?

Steve and I drove three hours to Waynesboro last Saturday for some serious (Read: bigger than Pungo Ferry Bridge) hill climbing. We didn't leave until noon which means we didn't get there with bikes out, gear on, ready to roll until about 4 p.m. Rather late in the day to get motivated for what was supposed to be a medium-hard brick, especially hard after a 3 hour car ride.

Medium hard means we do our own thing. (Steve's medium hard is my impossible hard). So I started out alone. The first ten miles on the parkway starting at Afton Inn are about nine miles of climbing and one mile of descent. I was working but I was also enjoying it. Something was missing....

I got back to the car and without the usual "ugh, I don't wanna" started my brick despite the fact that the route Steve said he was doing and that I couldn't possibly do due to my 'lack of agility' -therefore guaranteeing this would be my running route- seemed to be three miles of straight up hill. I was definitely working on that run but I was also enjoying it. Something was definitely missing...

The next day we did the old Blue Ridge Extreme metric route - thirty miles of rolling hills leading into a Cat 2 climb called Vesuvius that will forever intimidate me no matter how many times I actually make it to the top and then about thirty miles of parkway riding which means no climb too steep but more than one climb quite long especially on tired legs. I was working and hurting especially by mile 50 but I was also having fun, lots. Again I felt it, elusive but definitely palpable - something was noticeably missing....

As I dragged my tired, stiff and achy bones into the shower I pondered the mystery. Instead of feeling discouraged, I felt satisfied and instead of feeling like the biggest loser (and I'm not talking about weight loss) I felt great, happy, inspired even. Missing, gone and disappeared were the feelings of drudgery, demoralization and discouragement that usually follow my workouts.

I made a decision after Eagleman to stop comparing myself to everyone else. Who cares? I never cared and I realized that for me, caring sucks all the life's blood out of the sport for me. It's amazing. I'm having fun training. Fun training. For me at least no longer an oxymoron.

Sunday, June 28, 2009


Blog posting is not always easy. It's almost like homework - once you get behind it's easy to think of reasons why its better to catch up tomorrow. For me tomorrow turned into six months. Well I'm back. I could say I've got some catchin up to do, but I'm not doing any catchin up. Today is the first day of the rest of my blogging....

I'm supposed to be training for the Luray International Triathlon. For the less obsessed, international refers to the distance of the race not how far athletes come to race it. It is a small race and a good distance for me. After the aqua fiasco at Eagleman; it's time for me to scale back the distance and do some work on speed. Okay do lots of work on speed.

I started running 20 years ago and from the first day the thing that appealed to me was going farther not faster. Somehow I got caught up in the quantity numbers game. In my head I'm still like that. I have to remind myself constantly at the pool that I am there to actually learn how to swim not just to log x number of meters in the water. Same thing on the bike. If I don't ride at least 30 miles I don't feel like it's worth going. Running is really hard for me now but even so my mind says that running anything less than 5 miles is not even worth heading out the door.

So I'm going to fight my distance obsessions and focus on the international distance for the rest of this year. Luray in August and the Savage Man olympic distance at the end of September.

I'm going to really make an effort to become a better swimmer by spending at least 5 hours a week in the pool. I'm going to do speed work on the bike once a week and speedwork at the track once a week.

Steve keeps preaching consistency so I'm going to be consistent. In blogging and in training!

Vacation this week - training starts July 5th!