Monday, May 24, 2010

Round, Round, Get Around, I Get Around....

Just a quick update to tell you I've been out and about on the internets this week.

First off - I was interviewed this week, by my friend, Ian Chitson, from Daily Mile, for his blog Running OK in the UK. Check out his blog, he's got some interesting stuff there! Thanks Ian!

Second - the amazing Colin Hayes (resurrectedrunr) asked me to collaborate with him on one of his famous parody songs for the Run Run Live Podcast. We did our rendition of Elton John and Kiki Dee's song "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" ~ "Don't You Break My PR". What makes it truly amazing, is that we can do a duet, having never met in real life. How cool is that? Check out Chris Russell's podcast episode #122 to hear the song. I also plan to play it on my next episode (#65) as well.

Third - while we're on the topic of Run Run Live, this is the last week to add your miles to the Podcaster's Challenge on Buckeye Outdoors. There are only two Podcasts left - "Running Stupid" and "Run Run Live". If you are so inclined, please join Chris's team and add your miles - he needs every mile you can spare since the RS team is known for adding their miles at the last moment. (I have absolutely nothing against the other team - I just don't know them and haven't heard their podcast, and Chris is the man who gave me my start into podcasting so I am partial to his show :)

Finally - training is going well. I recovered quickly from my sprint race and was right back into training the next day. On Saturday I had my last hard brick - 90 minute Zone 2-3 ride and 60 minute Zone 2-3 run. I got through it fine although I was tired and sore by the end of the run and happy that I didn't have to keep on running another 11km. I think I went a little too hard (about 6 min / km), and I suspect I should probably stick with a 7 min/km for the Half Iron and if I'm feeling good, I can speed up a little for the second half. Somehow I doubt I'll be feeling good for the second half though. LOL...

My ankles and feet (arches, PTT etc) continue to be a bit twingey. I'm not sure what to expect or how to proceed so I will continue to be cautious and just try to rest them as much as I can before the race.

Take care everyone. Happy training!!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Short video after the race

OK, so right after the race, I stood in the lake to cool my legs a bit. I had my blackberry and I was sending my coach a message to let him know how I had done on the race. While I was there, Erik came up with the camera and said told me he'd already seen the results sheet and that I'd come in first of ten in my age group. I was happy but I continued emailing my coach to let him know and I didn't know Erik was actually video taping me to see my response to his news. He laughed because I was too busy texting to "respond" the way he had wanted. :)

video

Monday, May 17, 2010

The Good, the Bad, and the Awesome

The Oliver Wine Capital of Canada Sprint Triathlon Race Report

I'll try to keep this relatively short. Tee hee, yeah right.

Saturday

We had to drop the dogs at the kennel before 10am so we were off early. We stopped in to Penticton and checked out the Peach City Runners store (very nice) and then went to White Spot for lunch. We still had some time to kill so we headed over to Township Seven Winery, met the Bradinator and bought a couple of bottles of his awesome Black Cloud Pinot Noir (now wishing I'd bought more...) At that point, Erik jumped on his bike and I drove to Oliver where I hung out on the beach watching the swimmers while I waited for Erik to join me so I could do a quick, chilly swim in the lake. As usual, the lake water took my breath away at first but once I got over my anxiety, I swam a few hundred metres and knew I'd be fine in the water the next day. It was hot, about 30C and I got some some sun on my shoulders.

We headed down to Osoyoos and checked into the Watermark Resort, a beautiful one bedroom suite with full kitchen (great price through Hotwire), then picked up some beer and pop and I had a 30 minute nap. We went back to Oliver for the race meeting, picked up some chicken and rice for dinner, and spent the rest of the evening in our suite, relaxing and getting organized. I was tired and was asleep before 10pm, with a little help from my friend Mr. Ativan.

Sunday

We were up at 5:45 and I was nervous and couldn't eat but forced myself to swallow a few spoons of yogurt then left for Oliver around 6:35. It was overcast and threatening showers but there was no wind. It was about 11C when we arrived and about 16C at race time.

I was amazed that I had the same race number as last year (#103) and I quickly got set up in transition and said hello to some of my race mates. Most of them seemed to be first timers or relatively inexperienced so I was able to answer a few questions and have some relaxed conversation.

The Olympic wave set off at 8:30 and we were to go about 9am. I went into the water for a quick "get used to the water" swim and it seemed much colder than the day before. Since we still had 15 minutes to wait, I got out of the water and huddled with Erik for awhile. Soon enough it was time to go so I seeded myself in the front third. I was hoping to be behind the fast swimmers and ahead of the breast strokers and I think I ended up with a pretty good spot over all. I only got hit a few times, nothing serious.

When the horn went, I started in pretty fast and of course, totally forgot to hit the start button on my watch until I'd swum 2-3 minutes so my time was off the entire race. Bozo. I tried to draft when I could but there always seemed to be someone in my way who was not quite as fast as I liked. By the time we got around the end buoy, I had more open water. I didn't feel very fast in the water and despite my efforts, I could only manage to breathe one side. It's so hard to tell how hard you are swimming in the lake when there are no landmarks to judge your speed. With anxiety taking a role, I don't know if I was swimming fast or just nervous.

Anyway, the swim was uneventful and was soon back on the beach, trying to unzip my wetsuit as I ran. This year, it turned that there were some people training to be wetsuit strippers so they quickly grabbed me sleeves, pulled them down, ordered me to the ground and had that thing off and me back up in a flash. I thanked them and ran to T1.

I figure the wetsuit stripping added a few seconds onto my swim time (timing mat was after) so I'm content with my swim time of 16:19. However, I am still a little frustrated that I have spent SO much time in the pool and had pretty well the exact same swim time as last year. Ugh.

Swim time: 16:19 (goal 16:00, last year 16:26) 50/120 people, 23/67 women, 2/10 AG

Onto the bike. I didn't practice transitions this year and I didn't go super fast but it didn't take long to get my bike shoes, helmet, and sunglasses on and head out on the bike. This year there were no timing mats on the bike out so my bike time included both transitions. That kinda sucks. Neither Erik nor I were able to get an accurate read on my T1 time but we're guessing it was around 1:30.

I felt good on the bike and for the most part, I was able to keep my HR around 160 and my average speed around 30 kmh. Idiot that I am, I also forgot to start my Garmin until I'd ridden about 200m. I hit the first hill and climbed well, passing several people on my way up. I was even able to point out to a girl that her laces were untied on my way up the hill. A few hard core men on tri bikes passed me and I passed a few people but for the most part, I was on my own. I think only two women passed me and I passed one of them back later.

Halfway through the bike ride, it started to sprinkle down rain and the road got wet. I was a little more cautious on the downhills and the corners at that point. I had to slow down and go around and irate young man on a mountain bike who was caught doing his grocery shopping. He called me an effing idiot when I swerved around as he meandering in the middle of the road.

Just as I made the turn to head back into transition, an SUV slowed to turn right in front of me. The traffic controllers screamed at him to get out of the way as he rolled into the bike lane in front of me and the crowd groaned as they saw me forced to slow to almost stop from a high speed aero position. I figured I lost at least 30 seconds there as well.

I made it back into transition and after pulled off my soaking wet bike shoes, had a little trouble putting on my socks and tying my Newtons. I hadn't been using speed laces so didn't want to add anything new to the mix. I only lost a few seconds but Erik felt I was a bit slow in T2.

T1/Bike/T2 time 39:38 (goal 38-39 min, last year 39-40 min) 43/120 people, 13/67 women, 1/10 AG

AGAIN, I forgot to hit the lap button as I left T2 for my run. I ran about 100m and remembered. I ran up the steep hill and stopped for a cup of water at the first aid station, then headed out. My legs felt pretty good and were fairly loose almost immediately. I had my Garmin set to autolap every km and I ran the first km conservatively, then sped up a little after that. I was feeling strong so decided to try to negative split the run. I had my Garmin set to show me my running pace for the first time so I wasnt sure if I should believe it when it said I was running 5:00-5:30 most of the time. I slowed to a 6:00 min km up the hills but other than that, I was pretty darn fast. Here are my splits.

5:40
5:28
5:30
5:27
5:05 (8 min mile)

(I really ran hard the last km and managed to stay ahead of the girl who was in the lead for the 45-49 AG although I didn't know it at the time.)

Run time: 27:35 (goal 30:00, last year 32:09) 69/120 people, 31/67 women, 4/10 AG

This was by far the fastest I've ever run a 5k in a triathlon before. My previous best time was 29:45 in my first tri and I was dying. This time I felt good for the whole thing! My left ankle/heel was a bit sore but more ignore-able.

Overall time 1:23:31 (goal 1:25 last year 1:28) 51/120 people, 20/67 women, 1/10 AG

So I am content although a bit disappointed by my swim, happy that I managed a decent bike with a considerably lower heart rate than last year, and ecstatic with my run! I did well in my age group, having a 5 min lead on the girl in second but to be honest, most of them were first timers so you can't really compare.

I have a little more to say, but I'm tired. Must go to bed now. May add some more tomorrow. There are some pictures on my blog and I have a funny video to post as soon as I have a chance.

Thanks for reading!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Optimism

My first race is in 2 days and naturally, there's a potential problem. :0

A week ago, I ran on Wednesday morning with tired legs. I didn't have time to do my usual, and clearly very important, stretch and ice routine after my run. I ended up with a sore PTT and arch on my right foot for close to a week and I didn't do my Sunday long run.

This Tuesday past, my PTT and arch was finally feeling ok again so I went out for my early morning 45 minute run - first run in a week. I was to do a few medium speed intervals in prep for this week's race. We decided that I should wear my orthotics in my Newtons for the time being, to give me some extra support the arch and avoid any further problems.

As soon as I started running, the outsides of my heels hurt quite a bit. This was not at the bottom of the heel, it was the sides. Maybe it's called the lower ankle, I'm not sure. The pain basically wrapped around the back and sides of both heels, so if it was related to the achilles, then it was only at the attachment part, not on the tendon itself.

Anyway, I did my walk run warm up for 10 mins and it hurt every time I ran. However once I started running steady, it lessened quite a bit and didn't really hurt much. I did my first 5 min interval at a slow pace and did my next 2 at a fast pace. All was well. I stretched and iced after.

Thursday morning, I had a 30 min run to do so I went thru the same thing. Pain at first and throughout the warm up, then it lessened a bit after I started running steady. But this time it only lessened a bit and did not subside to the point that I could run faster for my intervals. In fact, by the 25 minute mark, it was starting to increase again so I stopped and walked home.

I don't know what the problem is. It's in both ankles equally. I was assuming it was stiffness from taking a week off but I'm worried that it's not going to be gone by Sunday. It doesn't hurt at all when I'm walking or climbing stairs at work. It only hurts when I run. In fact, it's hard to isolate because it doesn't hurt when I press on the area so I can't even figure out exactly where it's hurting. It feels more like the bone or maybe the tendon attachment than anything else. It doesn't hurt on the bottom of my foot at all.

So now I know what you're thinking, you're thinking that maybe it's from putting the orthotics in my shoes, and yes, I think that does make sense. I'm not positive but I think it was already hurting before I put the orthotics in on Tuesday. On Sunday and Monday, I ran on the spot for a minute to see how my shins and arch felt and I seem to remember my heels hurting a bit then, but since I wasn't looking for it, I didn't pay much attention to it and I can't say for sure.

Anyway, I've googled the pain and can't really find anything that sounds like the issue other than achilles tendonitis. But again, it's only the attachment not the tendon itself so that may not be it.

I am thinking I won't do my easy brick tomorrow (20 min easy bike, 15 min easy run) just to be on the safe side and rest my legs. I'll ice them again tonight, as I did last night. And I'll stretch every day.

On Sunday, I'm just gonna run and see what happens. If it hurts a lot, it'll slow me down for sure and I'll be pissed off but I'll go for it anyway. After the race, if need be, I'll take a week or so off from running and do pool running before my Half Iron. But who knows, maybe this will disappear again as suddenly appeared?

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Taper Week

Well I'm one week out of my first triathlon of the season and I thought I'd better make sure I'm organized and ready to race next Sunday. I went back into the archives to cut and paste the following plan, and with a little tweaking, it's ready to go. I noticed that a week before the race, the lake was only 16-17C and this year it is 15C. The forecast this week is for temps 20-24C (low 70's) so hopefully the lake will once again warm up to 19C or so.

So here's the plan.

Transition:
Towel
Bike Shoes (worn barefoot)
Running Shoes with
Socks rolled half way down, tucked into each running shoe
Sunglasses
Helmet
Hat
Race belt with number
Full water bottle - to wash feet if needed
Hand held bottle of Nuun/Carbo Pro - quick sip or maybe on run if I'm super thirsty.
Small hand towel
Puffer - 2 puffs right before swim and then put in bento box
Hammer gel in gel flask
Jersey? (jacket or vest or knee warmers ??)

It'll look more or less like this pic (from 2 years ago) although I'll be wearing my Newtons, and I'll take two bottles I think. I won't have the epipen either.



On Bike
Bento box - puffer
Garmin on bike - power on before the swim
Aerobottle full

Underseat Bag
2 spare tubes
Tire levers
2 gas cartridges
Bike tool

Wear
Sugoi Brand Champion tank top
Tri shorts
Flip flops ?

Wet suit
Goggles
Swim cap(s)
Track suit if cold

In Back Pack (with Erik)
Chocolate milk (for after)
Camera
Recorder
Blackberry
Sun screen
Body Glide - for under wetsuit, calves, wrists, neck etc.
Extra goggles

Pack in car for the trip

All of the above PLUS:

Bike
Floor pump
Extra set of clothes in case

Dinner food - chicken, rice, bananas
Snack food
Breakfast food - yogurt, oatmeal, banana

Ice packs?

Alarm clock
iPod
BC Triathlon Membership Card

OK, that's all I can think of right now. I will be adding more as I remember things.

Goal Times?:

Swim: 16 minutes

T1: <2 Minutes

Bike: 35-36 min (it's actually only 18k)

T2: 1 minute

Run: tough to guess. Under 30 minutes. Maybe only barely tho.

16+2+36+1+30 = 1:25?

Time last year was 1:28 because of my poor run and windy bike.

But who really knows? If it's windy, forget it. It took me 45 minutes to do that bike route in a strong wind last year.

Here's a link to the race:

Oliver Sprint (and Olympic) Triathlon

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Yowza

Oh my, I've really been neglecting my blog.

I've been so busy with work, family, and training, that it's been tough to find the time and energy to post anything here.

I am just over a week away from the Oliver Sprint Triathlon and more than a little worried about the swim. A few days ago, my friend Paul emailed me to say that the current water temperature is only 15C (59F). Since then, then weather has continued cool and showery and although warmer weather is supposed to be on its way, it's not likely going to increase the water temperature enough to make me any less anxious. With predicted highs only around 70F max mid week next week, it's not going to make a lot of difference. Brrrrrrrr....... you all know how I HATE to get into the pool. Can't even fathom 60F water.

My training and long runs have been going well over all. I've been without shin pain for quite a while now and my longest two runs have been over 15 and 18 kms. For the most part, I feel tired and sore during the week but I'm usually fresh and raring to go for my longer workouts on the weekends.

For the past 3 weeks, I've done my mid-week run in the morning before work. It means getting up at 5am and being out the door by 5:30. It feels pretty good to run at that time of day, much better than after work on tired legs, but the down side is that I'm in a rush to get ready for work afterwards. It takes me a little while to cool down before I can shower and yesterday, I didn't have time to do my ritualistic post-run stretch and ice right after and today I'm feeling the effects. My Posterior Tibial Tendon (PTT) is VERY sore near the ankle today and it hurt quite a bit at work all day. I iced it at noon and this evening and I'm optimistic that it'll be feeling better by my long run Sunday. Keeping everything crossed until then.

Today I missed my swim workout as the forces conspired against me and I just couldn't fit it in. The upside is that I also had the opportunity to spend some quality time with my son and I really enjoyed his company and that is so much more important than a 45 min swim in my opinion.

Well that's all for now folks. I am wiped and heading to bed. Tomorrow is Friday and I have a busy work day ahead. Then I have to get my overdue allergy shot and probably go back to the school for Family Fun Night. Saturday, I have to ride for 2 1/2 hours and then we may head down to Penticton to watch the Barebones Duathlon. At this point, Erik's hamstring and groin pull are bothering him enough that he's decided not to race. I think it's probably the smartest thing to do.

See you later, thanks for reading. :)