Saturday, August 23, 2008

Now What?

Why the Half Marathon of course!!

Well, actually, it's looking more and more like I'm going to have to settle on the 10 km run that day. The way that my legs feel, it's unlikely that I'll be able to build up from my current 10 km to 22 km in 6 weeks. I'm going to try though, and I just my have to do my WWH at the end of October, or even some time in November. Won't that be lonely? :(

Not surprisingly, I've had a pretty lazy 10 days since my race, but things were very busy with my daughter's wedding last weekend, as well as getting back to school to get my classroom ready for start up on September 2nd.

I went out for an easy 28 km ride the day after the triathlon just to loosen things up. That felt really good. Then on Wednesday, I did a 3 km walk/run with Erik as he began his 'Couch to 5 km' training program so he can work towards a triathlon next year! (He's trying to start up the running really slowly so he doesn't have knee problems this time.) We ran 1 minute and walked 3 minutes. My legs definitely did not want to run any more than that, even though it was 3 days after the race.

On Thursday I went to physio and had more acupuncture and was given some strengthening exercises to do. My legs were a little sore the next day from the weight machine 'tests" I did to compare the strength of my right versus my left legs. My left is much stronger than my right by the way, something we're working to correct. It MIGHT be what's causing the shins splints in my right leg.

On Friday, I got an email saying that I had qualified for World's on the Gold Coast of Australia in September 2009!! It obviously wasn't too difficult to do since they had ten spots available in every age group - mostly a matter of doing the right race at the right time. Too bad I can't afford to fly off to Australia for a weekend... Maybe next time - World's 2010 will be in Budapest at the end of August. That would be fun to work into a vacation. It's nice to be live in a city that has the Canadian Championships - great opportunities!

I didn't do much over the weekend because I was too busy being the 'Mother of the Bride'!! Whoo hoo!! Here's a picture of the happy bride and groom.

One down, two to go. :)

On Sunday, we went on a long, hilly ride. It's probably one of the hilliest rides I've done in a long while. We rode all over East Kelowna, mostly along parts of the Sunday Ride route. 63 km and 2600' of climbing over 2-1/2 hours. My legs were tired after that. I was able to keep up with Erik most of the time although he wasn't going too hard. Interestingly, I passed him several times on short steep climbs. That really does seem to be my strength. I think I will start working on doing longer hill repeats so I can extend my endurance on the climbs because I can't seem to maintain that kind of strength for any length of time.

Today, I did my first real run from home since my race. Overall, my legs felt pretty good, especially for the first 3.5 km, then they started to hurt at the 3.7 km mark, so I stopped running and walked home 4.3 km all together. I just want to take it easy

I think I am going to buy the compression sleeves for my shins. If you haven't already voted for the colour, please do so - the poll is at the top right corner of my blog.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Race Report

I made it - what a day! First some videos and pics, then my report. :) :)

Here's a slideshow of the day's highlights.

Quick Clips

Bike Lap Two - (I'm in black, behind girl in purple)

Bike to Run Transition


219 sprint athletes
103 men (7:15 am wave)
113 women (7:25 am wave)

1 was 55/113 overall
I was 4/11 in my age group. 2.5 minutes behind 3rd place.

Goal times:

Overall time: 1:30
Swim: 18:00
T1/T2: 4:00
Bike: 40:00
Run - 28:00

Actual Times (and placement)
Overall Time: 1:30:04 (4/11 AG, 55/113)
Swim: 17:30 (5/11 AG, 73/113)
T1: 3:01 (6/11 AG, 77/113) (after T1 - 71/113)
Bike: 38:18 (3/11 AG, 16/113) (after bike - 42/113 (I passed 29 women and about 15 men)
T2: 1:49 (6/11 AG, 88/113) (after T2 - 47/113 - I got lost...)
Run: 29:45 (7/11 AG, 77/113) (after run - 55/113 8 women passed me)

Overall Stats (men and women)

Overall: 134/219
Swim: 144/219
T1: 154/219
After T1: 141/219
Bike: 67/219
After bike: 97/219
T2: 178/219
After T2: 109/219
Run: 161/219

Thoughts and Feelings
I felt pretty good this morning. I had on ok sleep, went to bed at 9pm, listened to ipod for awhile and finally fell asleep after 10pm. Had a bit of a restless night but got enough sleep. I woke up at 4:30am and felt pretty good. Had a shower, ate a little breakfast and got ready, then left the house at about 5:40 and was at the site before 6am. Did the body marking, then set up transition and chatted with other triathletes until swim warmup time around 6:50 am. I went to the bathroom a bajillion times (3?) then got wet (brrr) and swam about 200m to warm up. Waited with Erik for a few more minutes then one more bathroom trip before it was marshalling time.

It was a very quick time on the beach. I couldn't hear what they were saying because the music was too loud then suddenly the air horn sounded and everyone was rushing into the water. I was positioned to the left, closer to the buoys, so I ran too and just started swimming with the rest of them. It took a bit to find my way through everyone, and I swam fairly confidently the whole time. I wasn't fast but I was steady. I found it a bit of a pain that so many of them swam the breast stroke because it was hard to pass them for fear of being kicked. Once I was past the 2nd buoy, I started to breathe on one side only and felt like I was getting lots of air so I could swim faster. I kept at it steady until I reached the beach in just a bit over 17 minutes. I was very happy with my swim time.

Erik and Carmelle were along the chute, cheering me on as I ran to transition, which made me feel great! It was a looong run to my bike, but I got there as fast as possible, dried off a bit, and put on my bike shorts, then out to the bike course. I forgot to turn on my garmin at first so my data wasn't accurate. No worries, I just went as hard as I could.

I started to pass people almost right away. I was a little cautious at first, then got used to it and just started to hammer. Had a great climb up Knox, passing everyone as I went, men included! I followed my race plan pretty closely, and did really well on the climbs. All the way, I was passing people, which really boosted my confidence. There were a couple of people who were going my speed and we passed each other a number of times along the way. One of them was #727, who was later to beat me in the run and come in 3rd in our age group. Near the end of the bike, I really went hard and passed her, and a whole bunch of other people and had a great time overall of 38:18 with an avg speed of 31.3kmh. Much better than my goal 40 minutes, 30 kmh.

My bike-to-run transition sucked. I missed my row at first and had to back track but only lost a few seconds in that. Then I ran right past my spot and had to go back again. I figure I lost about 30-40 seconds in all. What an idiot! Meanwhile #727 was right behind and she was out on the run just seconds ahead of me. However, she was a stronger runner and ultimately beat me by 2.5 minutes so I couldn't have caught her anyway.

My first kilometer of the run was pretty good, about 5:48 km, but I couldn't hold it. I started to slow although my HR was high, 168/172. I tried to stay steady until the 3rd km then go harder but just didn't have it in me. My last km was my fastest but it wasn't enough to make a big difference and my overall run time was only 29:45.

Still, I had met my goal of 1:30 and was very happy with my bike time. Later, I looked a the men's bike times and saw that I had beaten over half of the men's bike times too. Yeah baby!

Here's a link to my beginner triathlete race report.

Race Report

Erik, Angie, and Jesse were there cheering me on every time I went past the main area and they were there at the end of the race. What a great feeling! I had an awesome time and loved every minute of it, despite my crappy run time. For now, I will focus on the high points (my relatively good swim and my awesome bike time), and I will work on my running over the winter.

Yee haw! What a great day!!!!

We hung around until about noon, watching for Carmelle to come in and hoping to win a door prize (nope), then starving, we headed for Subway and home to nap. Later Erik took me out to the Wild Apple at Manteo for a lovely celebration meal. I feel tired, and elated. What an awesome day!!!

I want to thank everyone who has faithfully been reading my blog over the past few months, and also those who have sent encouraging emails and phone calls. And thanks also to all my Twitter and TE friends. I truly could not have done this without your encouragement and support. Thank you so much for helping me to realize my dreams!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

It's all good

Saturday Morning Update 9:30am
I got up early to go downtown and watch the Try-a-Tri and the Kids of Steel - very exciting down there. No wetsuits allowed today. We also realized that my transition spot is pretty unaccessible for photos during race time - oh well. I took a couple of photos.

On my way home, I stopped at Gyro beach and put on my tri suit (the pink top and shorts) and swam 500m. It was absolutely fine and I swam about the same speed I always do. I got out of the lake feeling more confident than ever. I CAN do this. I really CAN!!!!

Saturday Afternoon Update 3:30pm I swam the tri route in my black speedo in 16:48. Yeah baby, that's much faster than I had hoped. It was really choppy and wavy so I found it tough going. Was off track a few times and stopped once to calm down on my back but still made good time overall.

Saturday Afternoon Update: 6:15 pm Just got home from the pre-race meeting - my swim time is at 7:25am. I have to be out of body marking by 6:30 am and out of the transition area by 7am. Warmup swim in side area then marshall at 7:15.

I can do this!

Still haven't made the final decision on what to wear. I'm now leaning toward my black swim suit and adding my black running shorts for the bike/run. I think I can swim faster in the swimsuit. I dunno.

8:45pm - Heading to bed. I had spaghetti and french bread for supper. No Sangria tonight. Everything's packed up more or less. Bike is locked up safely in transition. I will be posting updates from twitter tomorrow morning so if you can't wait for my blog update, read my twitter posts on the sidebar - over there--------->

Friday, August 15, 2008


The wet suit water temp cutoff is 22C. They never (or rarely) have had no wetsuits for the Apple Triathlon. Yesterday the water temp was 20.9C. It was 37C today (100F) and it's supposed to be hot again tomorrow. The temp for the aquathon this afternoon was 24C. The girl who makes the decisions says it doesn't look good. I will find out at the pre-race meeting tomorrow at 4pm with a final decision made on Sunday morning.

I need to go down and do a lake swim tomorrow in a regular swim suit. I have not done that. I will be ok but it will certainly make a difference to my confidence level in the water.

I can do this, I can do this, I can do this....

Now I have to rethink my T1 routine. It'll be easier with no wetsuit.


I practiced transitions at home this evening (Friday night). I put on my wetsuit and got in the hot tub on the back deck, then I got out and ran down the hill to the front yard and practiced the rest out front, riding one lap around the block. After the first try, I did it a few more times, without the wetsuit part, until I felt I had a it nailed. Some of the neighbours saw me and probably thought I looked pretty weird. Naturally, Erik took pictures. :)

Transition Set Up

Dork in the Hot Tub

Finished the "Swim"

Racing Down the Hill to T1 (Hope the real tri has a better path that this)

Wetsuit Off (I'm so good at this and now I may not need it??!)

Bike Shoes On

Clipping In

On the Bike

Return From the One KM Ride

Getting Ready to Run

Trying to Fix my Darn Ponytail (Got that figured out now)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

My Mantra

I am awesome! I can fly!
I am gonna rock this tri!

I have been feeling like crap most of this week. I've been super tired and really dragged out and just didn't feel up to working out at all. Yesterday was the worst day. I had had a late night the night before and I felt exhausted all day. I was starting to worry that I'd never feel good enough to race on Sunday. Finally, I had a nap in the afternoon and when I got up, I decided to just go for an easy ride to clear my head. Erik and rode down Lakeshore and back and I felt great! My legs felt strong and felt good on the hills. It was a nice 20km ride that totally rejuvenated me.

Then last night I remembered I had a set of Eli Bay relaxation CD's that I bought about 7-8 years ago. I got them mainly for relaxation and help with falling asleep but one of them is about visualization and it's called Maximizing Performance. Given that I'm just a tad prone to nervousness (LOL) I thought it might be helpful to start listening to the CD to help relax me and fill me with positive thoughts. I really enjoyed it and had no trouble falling asleep afterward.

So I had a GREAT sleep last night and woke up feeling better than I've felt in a week. After coffee, Erik and I got on our bikes for a ride before the temps got too hot. We rode easy downtown and then rode one lap of the tri route, with a focus mainly on any smooth shifting and thinking through any trouble spots. I got up Knox in 2 minutes flat without killing myself, and then I rode fairly easy for awhile. I hit the hill on Glenmore hard and kept a pace of about 30-35 kmh the whole way up which was much better than last time. I didn't ride very hard the rest of the route and still managed a time of 22 minutes overall. It'll be so nice to ride that route without the lights and stop signs on Sunday.

On our way home, we stopped at Fresh Air Experience and Chris checked my bike over for me and then we rode home easy. All the way home, I began to chant the mantra above that made me feel strong and empowered. I am going to use it throughout the race I think.

(I was joking with a friend that I had a different swim mantra - "I am not scared. I won't die. I am gonna survive this tri" - haha)

Anyway, as soon as I got home, I ran a one km lap around the block to see how my legs felt. My shins hurt a bit so I didn't push it but they weren't too bad and I did 6:00 km. I can live with that. I won't run again until Sunday. I am just going to stretch and ice and massage as much as I can between now and then. I will go for another swim or two this week but if I ride again, it'll be easy.

From here on, I'll just take it easy, rest, stretch, do yoga, eat well, drink water. Tomorrow I will pick up my race package and Friday we'll go down to the site to see how things looks. Saturday will be pretty busy with the practice swim, the pre-race meeting, and dropping my bike off. I hope to hit the sack by 9pm so I can feel relatively alive in the morning.

The tri top I ordered finally arrived but alas it doesn't fit so I'm going to wear my back up - the pink Sugoi Fizz tank. It's way too girly-pink for me, but what can you do? I have nothing else that comes even close to matching my tri shorts so I'll have to live with people thinking I'm a girly-girl. Haha. Here's what I'm wearing.

Erik's been great this week, keeping me calm and giving me lots of support. The girls are going to come down and watch me on Sunday and I'm hoping that one of them will bring Jesse down too. My mom will be out of town but I'm going to call her as soon as I'm done and let her know how it all turned out. I've had so much support and good wishes from all of my friends, IRL and online, it's made a HUGE difference! Thank you to all of you who have sent emails, posted comments on my blog, (or posted threads on forums - Paul :) ) I could not have done it without all of you encouraging me and telling me I could do it.

I hope I don't let you down on Sunday but I'm sure I am gonna rock this tri!!!


I'll post my race report as soon as I get home on Sunday afternoon but I'll update twitter from the race site so keep any eye on the feed if you want to know sooner. :)

Thanks again everyone!!!!


Thursday morning - just adding a bit more to this post. Here's course info and stats.

This is the 26th Annual Pushor Mitchell Apple Triathlon and it's a

» Qualifier for the 2009 Gold Coast ITU BG World Triathlon Championships in Australia: 10 AG spots in both Sprint and Olympic distances available
National Teams - How to Qualify (English) and National Teams - How to Qualify (Francais)

» Prizes: $25,000 for the Canadian National Championships and $10,000 for the ITU Kelowna Pan American Premium Cup (see Prizes Page for details)

Main Events

- Aquathon - FINA 1.5km open water swim
Saturday - Try-a-Tri, Kids of Steel Triathlon, Junior Elites Triathlon, FINA 5km open water swim
Sunday - Sprint and Olympic distance Age Groupers and later, the Elite race

As of today, there are 963 Sunday participants registered online.

5km Aquathon - 15 swimmers
Olympic tri - 694 athletes
Sprint tri - 232 athletes
Sprint tri - 123 women
Sprint tri -11 women in the 45-49 age group

Here are the race routes.


Bike 2 laps

Elevation Profile in meters (1 meter = 39" or 1 yd + 3")

Run - yay it's flat but watch out for that boardwalk and the stairs...

Stats and Data ('cos I love 'em!)
The range of times for women in the sprint last year were:

There were 70 female entrants in the sprint last year.

1st overall - 1:15:18 - 13:32/37:10/22:11
Last overall - 2:20:26 27:36/52:50/45:11

1/5 in my 45-49 age group was 40th overall - 1:37:09 19:08/43:03/29:16

5th overall last year is in my AG this year (uh/oh)
Her times were: 1:21:55 15:52/37:49/25:26 (wow!!)

My estimated swim time of under 20 minutes would put me about 50/70 for the swim.
My estimated bike time of 40 minutes would put me about 13/70 for the bike.
My overly optimistic run time of 28 minutes would put me about 18/70 for the run.
My estimated T1/2 time of 4 minutes would put me about 18/70 for T1 and T2.

Of course, that was all last year. 2008 is a new year, new people, and more of them.

Interesting to look at the stats though. :)

Monday, August 11, 2008

Obsessively anal or what?

I've read every triathlon book and magazine I can get my hands on, talked to every experienced triathlete who could tolerate my non-stop questions, and read online forums ad nauseum. I really wanted to try to learn from other people's mistakes and have tried to incorporate their advice into my training program and race plan. I don't know what else to do to be ready other than to calm myself down and just do it. I was telling someone the other day that right now the waiting feels like a combination of a dental appointment and Christmas.

So to that point, I've been writing down a list of things I need to take and a plan of what I need to do/think on race day (and the days before.) Yes, I'm anal and obsessive - I know that. :)

So here's my list and my plan so far. I'll probably log back in and tweak it during the week as I think of other things. I really find that having a list helps to get stuff off my mind and keeps me relaxed.

The night before
• high carb, low fat, low fiber meal, water, sleep.
• bag and backpack ready
• clothes laid out
• breakfast food ready
• calm, focussed, relaxed (LOL, yeah right)

My Bike
• on the bike – garmin, bento box, underseat bag, water bottle
• bento box – puffer, shot blox
• underseat bag – tube, 2 CO2, tire levers, contacts case
• helmet – sunglasses, epipen, race belt

What I'll wear

•tri top, shorts, HRM, watch, sandals, track suit if it's cool, hat, ponytail, sunglasses

In my bag
• runners, bike shoes, 2 sox, pink polka dot towel (easier to spot), wet suit, swim cap, goggles, body glide, hand towel, extra water bottles

In backpack with Erik
• extra epipen
• camera
• food
• jacket
• tylenol
• cell phone
• TP or kleenex

Before – T1/2 set up, body mark, warm up, HRM on, body glide, wetsuit, watch, ponytail, swim cap, goggles, leave sandals, turn on garmin.

Just before entering water, start timer on watch. Check it!

T1 set up – pink polka dot towel, helmet w/epipen, garmin, race belt: bike shoes, garmin on, hand towel, water bottle, gatorade bottle

Exiting water
- fill suit with water, peek at watch and memorize time if I can, take off watch, hold in mouth, lift goggles, take off top of wetsuit, put watch back on if I can but don't worry about it too much (all while running). Goal: Anything less than 20 minutes will be great.

At T1 - take off wetsuit, goggles, cap. Put on shoes, helmet, epipen, race belt. Have a drink. Run with bike. Start Garmin. Glance at watch if I can (swim/T1 total). Get on bike, clip in, ride fast.

On Bike
– get HR under control, eat shot blox, drink water, climb hard, push on flats, spin a bit before 2nd climb, lap button on 2nd lap if I can, go hard, drink, eat. Hit lap button at end of bike. Goal: 30 kmh avg, 20 min lap.

T2 set up
- runners, sox ready in runners, hat, extra water/gatorade, shot blox, hand towel, race belt, adjust ponytail

Bike to Run – run with bike, rack it, helmet off, shoes off, sox and runners on. Grab Garmin off bike. Drink. Carry hat, sunglasses, garmin. Starting running – adjust ponytail, hat on, sunglasses on. Lap button at start of run, and each km if I want to.

On Run – steady, HR under control, 6:00 pace – 1st km. Pick it up each km. Goal: 5:30-6:00 km avg? (27-28 minutes)


To Do List

Pick up race package at RAC any time
Thu – 4-8 pm
Fri – 12-8 pm
Sat – 12-8 pm

Bike/helmet inspection (voluntary)
Fri/Sat 12-8 pm

Practice swim
Sat 1:00-1:45 pm

Bike Drop off
Sat 3-8pm

Pre-race meeting
Sat 4:30 pm

Body Marking
Sun 5:30-7:00 am

Opening Ceremony
Sun 7:00 am Tugboat Bay

Race start
Sun 7:15am + be there 30 minutes early

Watch Elite Race
Sun 11:10 male / 11:45 female

Watch Awards
Sun 4:00 pm

Post-Race Social at Beer Gardens
Sun 11:00-6:00 pm

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Quick Update

I did the swim this morning and I felt great! I didn't have any panicky feelings and nothing freaked me out. We swam quite far out and I was lucky that Carmelle's husband Rob Swan and one other guy were swimming with me so I felt more confident. Afterwards, Rob gave me some general advice about the swim and helped me with sighting and I felt so lucky to be able to get some support and advice someone like him.

Anyway, I am totally ready for the tri now. Bring it on!!!!!!!

And on a sidenote, the video below is absolutely hilarious but only if you use twitter...

I'm sorry Mr. Hitler, Sir. Twitter is down again....

PS Britishbulldog is running a contest on his blog. You can have a chance to win Dean Karnazes' new book "Secrets I Learned Running 50 Marathons in 50 Days by clicking here.

Friday, August 8, 2008

The Taper

From what I have read, I should be reducing the amount of training I do this week, but not stopping completely. I don't know if I really need much of a taper given that it's only a sprint triathlon but my main goal will be to get my legs feeling like running again. My shins are still very sore from the PT on Tuesday and I have not been for a run since then. I did one 40 km ride on the flats this week with 1 minute hard intervals and 3 minutes easy spinning. That felt pretty good without beating up my body, but because I've been away on and off the past couple of weeks, it's been more of a rest week than normal anyway. I have been swimming a lot, more to get myself used to lake swimming than anything else, but my running has really suffered and I haven't had a good run since my July 25th brick. Since then I tried running on July 28th and felt crappy, then again on my tri practice on August 3 and felt so-so (and slow). It's almost as if I have to recover from my physio appointments as well as my runs. I am contemplating cancelling my appt next Tuesday and just letting my legs relax. I dunno.

Tomorrow morning is my last big mental OWS challenge. Carmelle has invited me to join her and some other of her triathlete buddies on a practice swim at Tugboat Bay, where the tri will be held. It's a bit of a freaky place to swim (rocky junk, weeds, sharp drop off) and I'd really like to experience it a couple times before the race so I am ready for it. I may do a short run after if my legs feel ok but I probably won't join them for the bike route trip because I want to do that on Sunday or Monday.

My other goal this week is to devise my race plan - I need to make a detailed plan of everything I will be doing on Sunday, as well as the days leading up to race day. The better planned I am, the more relaxed I will feel (I hope). God, you'd think I was going to be in the Olympics... :)

Health and Fitness

Well today I had an interesting appointment with the woman who did my body composition analysis. One year ago, I had my body fat tested and it was at 30%. All my numbers were great and I was definitely in the healthy and fit range, despite having what I consider to be fairly high body fat. So I decided to work hard for one year and then get it tested again to see if there would be changes. Today was the day. My weight is exactly the same as it was a year ago but I really feel like my body has changed a lot. I have way more muscle and feel and look much slimmer than I did a year ago. I even wear at least one size smaller than I did a year ago. And yet every single number came in about the same today! My body fat is still 29.8%, my measurements are about the same (although my chest, at the armpits, is one inch bigger - I think due to more muscle from swimming.) I really can't believe that all the caliper testing was pretty much the same, well only slightly lower in all areas than it was a year ago. Erik was really surprised too. My tanita scale says my body fat is around 25% and the electronic measuring device at the grocery store has shown a steady decline from 30% down to 25% in the past year. I just don't know why the numbers on the caliper test didn't show that today.

At any rate, she said I was in excellent shape for my age and I'm doing all the right things so I guess I won't really care about what the number says. I have been wearing a bikini all summer and that's what really counts right? Haha, oh yeah, and I rock at swimming, biking, and running - LOL...

Well I have to hit the sack so I can get up by 6 and head down to the lake by 7:30am. It's been thundering and raining this evening so it'll be interesting to have to swim in rough weather tomorrow morning. Just another challenge to beat, right?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Two Weeks to go

I'm home from vacation and it's getting close to race day - I can tell because my pulse starts racing every time I think about it. :)

The rest of our week at Shady Lagoon was lovely - lots of laughs, lazy days on the beach, and of course swimming and riding. I gained 1-2 lbs so the good food must have outweighed the riding, sad to say...

Medical Update

My 'procedure' on Wednesday morning went well - pretty simple, not too horrible - if you've been putting off a sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy, don't - it's really not worth the worry. And for you women out there, it's a hell of a lot easier and less invasive than childbirth. :)

The doctor is a marathoner and triathlete so he was familiar with my symptoms. I have nothing to worry about, there was no evidence of any problems of any sort - I'm as healthy as a horse and can continue running without too much worry. He gave me a few suggestions that might lessen the problem and thinks that I'll probably 'outgrow' it - as I slowly continue to increase my running distances. Just as I had suspected... Glad I had it done and ruled out any serious problems. It's well worth it for the peace of mind alone.

Training Update

I took Wednesday off then swam 750m on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday morning before we left. My swim times really suck - I doubt I'm going to be able to do better than 19-20 minutes at the triathlon so I may as well just get used to that.

On Thursday we rode up Richter Pass, part of the IMC route. It wasn't too hard, not a steady uphill - it has several areas that level off. We didn't know where the highest point was so we stopped at about the 11 km mark, at the info sign for Spotted Lake (about 1-2 km past the lake itself.) It was about a 35 km ride all told.

On Friday, Erik, Yogi, and I rode to Oliver for breakfast again. I didn't want to ride hard so I drafted behind the boys the whole way and never got my heart rate up much at all. We met Judy and Jesse at the Cock and Bull for breakfast then we rode back, making even better time than the other day (31 kmh avg.) I was so well rested from drafting that I was able to blast past the boys up Peach Hill - haha...

We got home Saturday afternoon after dropping off Jesse at his dad's and picking up the happy dogs from the kennel. Yogi and Judy arrived a couple hours later and we ordered pizza and sat out on the deck to enjoy the evening. They headed off to the Kootenays this morning.

Three Sport Brick - My Triathlon "Simulation"

This morning, I got my new Sipaway set up on my bike and I think I like the way it works so far. I also took my aerobars off to lighten my bike up since I'm not going to use them at the triathlon. I loaded up all my stuff into the van and drove down to Gyro to do a race simulation. Because it was already noon on a long weekend, I had to park down Swordy Rd and walk across the street to the beach. I swam 750m in about 19 minutes, got half my wet suit off by the time I got to the cross walk, then I stopped my timer while I waited for the light to change, dripping wet, swim cap and goggles in hand. I'm sure people were really wondering what the hell I was doing on a Sunday afternoon.

As soon as the light changed, I ran down the road and started up my timer again as I reached my van. The I found the car lock clicker where I'd hidden it and did a quick transition to bike even putting on my new race belt sans number. I set up a route that had one long climb and the rest was fairly flat so it was fairly close to the race time (42 minutes with traffic lights etc), then I did T2 at the van again and set out for my run. My lower legs felt like crap again and I tried to run through it but by about the 3km mark, they were pretty uncomfortable. It had nothing to do with the biking, it's just my sore shins again. I did a short walk break after 3km but it didn't help so I just ran slowly back to the car. I ended up cutting my run short (4.5 km) because I didn't want to injure myself. I was running at 6-7 min km most of the time - ugh. I hope my legs don't hurt on race day. Crap. On my last long run and my last brick they felt great. I will only run a couple more short runs before the 17th I think and give them a lot of rest and time to heal. I see the PT on Tuesday afternoon so I'll see what he suggests.

Tri practice times

Swim: 19:00
T1: 2:30
Bike: 42:18
T2: 2:00
Run: 29:37

Total: 1:34:25
Est w/ full run: 1:37:25

Not too bad considering I had traffic to dodge, lights, stop signs, getting bike in and out of van, and I didn't go really hard.

Upcoming Week

This week is kind of busy - PT on Tuesday, Wed/Thurs in Vernon with the houseboat girls, then pedicure and body composition test on Friday. (I'm hoping to be down at least 5% from my 30% this time last year.) Anyway, because of all the interruptions, I think I'm just going to start to taper a bit I think. I'll try to swim as many days as I can, and then do mostly easy rides and maybe one more ride on the tri route. I am going to let me running legs rest 3-4 days between runs and do TONS of stretching etc - mostly listening to how they feel when I do run. My goal is to keep them active but fresh.

And here's one funny/dumb story before I sign off. On Saturday morning, I was chatting away with Erik as I was getting ready to swim one last time. I got the wet suit up half way and the one arm in and something just didn't seem quite right. Oops, I had the dang thing on backwards! - what an idiot... It's hard enough to have to put the thing on once, then to have to take it off and put it back on again. D'uh....

I'll post some camping pics after I have a chance to go thru them and see if any turned out. Erik took a video of me swimming - I might post that AVI file if I can figure out how. (OK, I figured it out and it's now been added, as you probably have noticed.)

I'm glad he took this video. It made me notice how much I lift my head when I breathe and especially when I sight. Since then I tried taking a side breath first, then turning my head and taking a glance ahead without having to lift my head so high. When I do that, I don't have to lift my mouth out of the water.