Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Race Report-Chisago Lakes

A week ago Monday, I got out and rode the Chisago Lakes long course with Cindy since I needed to get in my missed long bike ride and run on Sunday. My legs felt crappy and not too far into the bike course (I think about 10 miles), I just yelled out "I hate this course!" The fact is that I struggle on flat courses! I feel that I cannot find the "right" gear-one is too easy and the next one is too hard. Along with gearing not being as comfortable as liked I focused in on every little thing that made me unhappy about biking. A while back I started having some problems with my seat chafing, being uncofortable, etc, so my seat became the focus of my biking problem of the day. I got off my bike numerous times to adjust the seat a million times-I though Cindy was going to leave me behind:) Anyways, I waited for the hills to come (which is about 20 miles into the ride) and then I started to feel okay with the course. I need to work on riding some flat courses because the constant spinning wears on the legs. I followed up my workouts with a strength session at Discover Strength and a 4 mile run with run club.

For the rest of the week, I really took it easy!
Tuesday, I swam at Lifetime and ran 2.5 miles.
Wednesday, I rested.
Thursday, I biked 45 minutes and ran 30 minutes at Lake of the Isles with P2.
Friday, I rested
Saturday, I biked 45 miles and swam 15 minutes at the race site.

Race Report:
The morning started early with a 3:45 am wake-up. I quickly fed the dogs (I was watching my parents dog too), took them for a quick walk, and then packed up the car with my race gear before heading to the gas station to fill up my car and grab some gatorade. While at the gas station two men came in raiding the place for food and just being obnoxious-talking about that they need to ride really slow on the way back because they needed to drink their waterbottles, wink wink...........these guys were still up from partying all night!

I ended up making it to the race site at about 5:20 and was surprised by the number of people already there, especially since there were assigned spots on the racks. I wasn't looking forward to racing Chisago, which is probably more related to the feeling that I needed to do well since I had raced crappy this year so far. As I made my way to my assigned spot I was greeted by a ton of people that I know-its really nice to see so many familiar faces at races! The transtion area before the races has now become a big social event!

The swim: Last year the swim was extremely short! This year it was much longer and maybe even long for a 1/2 iron distance course. I was positioned in the 3rd wave based off of when I registered. The waves were mixed men and women, which sometimes can be rough as the men push you around a bit. I borrowed Cindy's sleeveless wetsuit since, I always feel so restricted in my long sleeve. I thought by going sleeveless will allow for less arm fatigue and better stroke effiency.

As I dove into the water when the wave started, I got kicked in the face knocking my left goggle off, making me have to tread water and reposition my goggle back on my eye. I started up the swim trying to stay close to the bouys, which was probably a mistake as I didn't have anyone to draft off of and swimmers from the previous heats kept crossing over the center causing me to get hit a couple of times. The swim was difficult for me-I don't know if it was related to the wetsuit or lack of swim training but man it was hard! As I rounded the corner and was heading back into shore a man crossed over the center and hit me head on! Nailed me!!!!! Shortly after than I started to feel naseau and then vomited twice. I finished the swim, hit the wetsuit strippers, and ran to my transition spot to get my bike. As I approached my spot two guys were there waiting for their relay mate, they asked me how the swim went-I responded with I puked twice probably not a good sign huh. They were so sweet! They gave me a little pep talk about that I would feel better once I got on the bike and that I was going to do awesome.....so sweet!

The bike: As explained ealier, the bike course is really flat for about the first 20 miles, then gets a bit rolly, and finishes up flat. In training for Madison, I train on so many hills that flat courses are really hard for me. I started off the bike at a pretty good pace (I believe somewhere in the 20's) but couldn't hold it for long since my right thigh was really cramped up. I tried to massage the tightness as I pedeled but it really didn't help that much. About ten miles into the course the bike route splits with the long course going to the left and the short course going to the right. Shortly, after the split Jake came flying by me, I tried to pick up my pace a bit but couldn't hold it. I thought to myself that I will catch him on the hilly part where most of people struggled on the course. As I biked longer, I continued to dry heave. I finally started to vomit after the hilly part, but right in front of a camera man! I tried to hurry up and get it done before the camera man started taking pictures. With about 15 miles left of the bike, I had made the decision that I was going to take the DNF as everything was hurting, I had been puking/dry heaving for several hours, and I was totally spent!

I finally made it back to the transition area and the relay guys were waiting for their teammate to come in from the bike. They asked how the bike went and if I was feeling better. I told them that I was done and that the puking hadn't stopped. They again gave a pep talk as I stood with my head between my legs in the transition area. I put on my running shoes as I had NO energy to find my flip flops. I walked my way out of the transition area and started to jog slowly to see if it would trigger me to vomit again. I thought to myself that if I end up vomitting within the first mile I would turn around. I did end up dry heaving a couple time during the first couple of miles causing me to walk. Christina's boyfriend saw me on the route, pulled over to the side of the road in his car and offered me a ride back to the start, but I waved him off since I was now determined to finish the race (he first had me mixed up with Christina because of the uniform, but shortly realized it was me instead). As the run continued on the my nausea started to get better. I took a little gatorade and some candy at a waterstop located 6 miles into the run. The candy was a lifesaver!!!! I love tootsie rolls!!!! I started feeling stronger and stonger as the run continued and ended up meeting up with Jake. I ran with Jake for a few miles and then finished up on my own.

Time: 5:52
The slowest swim I have ever had in a race!
Bike was close one of my fastest on a long course bike split! What?!
Run was pretty close to other 1/2 marathons in my long course events! Again what?! Even with all the walking!

Even though I had hoped for a better race, I made it and that is all that matters:)

Friday, July 16, 2010

I am feeling a little less fatigued making my workouts over the past couple of days much more enjoyable! Since last weekend I have really focused on getting enough rest-something that I haven't focused on in at least the past four years!

Wednesday, it was miserable, disgusting, swampy gross weather! When watching the news that night the weatherman stated it felt like 106 degrees-the hottest in 5 years! Along with heat was the unpredictability in the storm radar! So not wanting to chance getting caught in some severe weather I ended up biking inside for a hour and then following my workout up with a 75 minute swim. I felt strong! Yay! A guy in the lane next to even commented on my strong swimming!

Thursday, I met Kouba for the double combo. The double combo consist of a 45 minute tempo with 15 minute run at race pace (yeah you were thinking the double combo was some fast food dinner!) I felt great! Woohoo back in the swing of things! The first temp ride ended up being a little longer than expected so we made the second one a bit shorter but all in all we got in the time. This was probably the best run that I have had in weeks! Following the workout Kouba and I spent some time out on the boat relaxing before Irondaddy's big send off party for Lake Placid.

Today, I met Carla for a ride at the Dam. She had asked for some advice on biking. We ended up riding for two hours and I got a chance to share what I have learned over the past couple of years throughout my training for Ironman. Following the bike ride, I headed out for a 10 mile run. The run went pretty well even though it was really hot! My right calf was a bit crampy in the beginning but loosen up about 3 miles into the run. Towards the end of the run my legs did become a bit stiff and heavy, probably related to being depleted of electrolytes. I do have a funny story though.........during the run a woman stopped me and asked me why I was out running. I responded with "why." She the stated that I shouldn't be out running because it was 91 degrees and I should be taking it easy! I told her I was taking it easy so she didn't continue to jump down my back.........my mom once told me when I was little that the heat brings out the crazy people-I think that she was right:)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Time goes by so fast! I can't believe Ironman Wisconsin is only 60 days away!!!!! My training has been coming along except for the little bit of fatigue that I have felt over the past couple of days. I was hoping that I would get caught up on R & R over past week since I was off of work for seven days. My vacation ended up being quite a bit more eventful than expected. Monday (July 5th), I had my typical strength session scheduled at Discover Strength, which turned into a less than typical session when a man that was working out on the machine next to me became unconscious and gasping for air. We called 911 immediately and my emergent medical skills were quickly administered. I later found out that the man had a stroke and that if I wouldn't had been there to help him, he would had died! The man is doing well and is continously making progress! Thank god!

Tuesday I left for a quick trip to North Dakota (I will explain the reason for the trip at another time). Anyways returned back to the cities on Thursday evening after a long eight and a half hour drive.

Friday, I spent the day running around getting ready to race Lifetime on Saturday.

Saturday turned into an interesting day as I race both the short course relay and the short course individual triathlon. When I decided to sign up for the short individual, I explained to race director my plan to race the relay and the sprint course and he was fine with it. Well, I messed up the race results since according to the people that work for the timing chip company, their system cannot support a person doing two races.........what? I was like what if you have two people with the same name racing........doesn't make any sense! Anyways, when it came to the award ceronmy they had announce me getting 3rd place but once they got all the results worked out I ended up with 2nd place.........do you think that they will send me my 2nd place trophy? Overall the race went pretty well. When comparing my results to the last time that I had race Lifetime my time was about a minute faster this year.

Sunday, I met Margarita for a ride on the Chisago Lakes course. I had intended on doing 112 however I was so exhausted from the weeks festivities that I only ended up getting in 62 miles.

I spent the past couple day trying to get caught up on my rest so that I can continue to train for ironman effectively.

Monday, I got in a short swim at Lifetime and then headed to Discover Strength for my strength session with Mo. I then ended my day with 5.25 mile run with Run Club.

Tuesday, still feeling fatigued (or Margarita would put it "bonked"). I just did an easy 75 minute run with P2.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Well my triathlon season has officially started.....well lets say it started a month ago. I still am finding myself pulled in a million directions making it hard to get everything done! I have been happy with the consistency of my training since school has been out! Yeah! Since I did have to take so much time off during the spring, I have found myself struggling a little more with each workout but its coming along. I can at least that I'm feeling slightly ahead in my biking when comparing my last couple of years of training for Ironman. I have completed a 72 mile killer ride in Riverfalls, 76 mile ride in Stillwater, and have been out to Madison twice to ride. I really need to start focusing on my swim and run though!

As for my racing:
Over Memorial weekend, I ran the Madison half marathon. I was a little disappointed with my less than stellar performance. I haven't ran over a two hour half since 2007-just a little frustrated!:( Not that I have any excuses but the day was really hot (where they shut the course down early due to the heat) and we had rode the loop the day prior to the race.

Liberty 1/2 was mid June and again, I had a less than stellar performance there as well:( Liberty was the extreme opposite in weather from the Madison half-cold, wet, and windy. I had a really hard time warming up! My legs felt like logs on the bike and I shivered throughout the run. Can you wear your wetsuit for a whole triathlon? The swim was the best part except that it was measured a bit long, so I had a disappointing swim time (along with everyone else). The one good thing that came out of the day was knowing that I have mental strength to get myself through a long race day in crappy weather like that.

My next race will be Lifetime. I am signed up for the corporate challenge relay racing for Optum Health (I'm doing the swim) and then I will be racing the sprint course. I'm looking forward to Lifetime since its such a great event! I can't wait to see all the pro's!

What else....
I do have some exciting news! I along with 30+ of my friends/training partners will be heading to Coeur D'Alene Idaho next June to race Ironman! I need to start practicing in the cold! Check out this article:http://www.active.com/triathlon/Articles/Ironman-Coeur-dAlene-Preview.htm?cmp=306&memberid=45963124&lyrisid=20755646