Tuesday, August 10, 2010

I'm floating again! The last time I had a chance to update my blog was when I floated too.

It's hard to believe that it mid August! Ironman is coming up fast! I have spent the past couple of weeks traveling back and forth to Madison for training. I'm feeling much confident with my training and tackling the ironman course on September 12th. I now have had the chance to ride the full ironman course twice, increased my running, and swimming. I spent the past weekend in Madison training with Cindy where we had our share of ups and downs!

Thursday, I competed in my first Aquathon which consisted of a 1000 meter swim in Warner Lake and a 5k to follow. Upon pulling up to the race site, Cindy and I noticed the incredibly large waves out in the lake which led to the first great debate of the weekend-should we do the race or should we watch. Cindy made the call since she took the day off work and we drove to Madison a day specifically for the race-we were going to do the race! So even though I was totally intimated, I got registered and set up in the transition area. I started in the way back of the pack since I figured the field of athletes were really strong swimmers. Once the gun went off and the pack took off, I passed a few people but didn't struggle too much to find a clear pathway for me to swim. As stated earlier, the water was really wavy-not white cap wavy but big deep waves and because I was wearing my wetsuit I was up and down to the point that it was hard to spot the buoys. Once I finished the swim portion I was relieved to be out the water and eager to start the run. I didn't push too hard on either portion of the race since I knew that I had a big training weekend ahead of me. The run went pretty smooth. I passed a few people on the run even though I wasn't pushing myself too hard. My time was not stellar by any means, but had a great time! I would love it if we has an Aquathon series in Minneapolis!

Friday, Cindy and I headed to Devil's Lake for a beach to beach swim-the beaches are located across the lake from each other. the swim went pretty well. I felt pretty strong in the water, much stronger than the last time I swam at Devil's Lake. Following the swim Cindy and I ate some lunch and then went for a run/hike.

Saturday, was the biggest training of the weekend. Cindy and I left Monona Terrace early to get started on the 112 mile bike ride of the Ironman course. On the way out to the loop we ran into a group of riders that were there from Minneapolis as well. We had a quick chat with the group at Fireman's Park and then met up with a friend who was going to ride a loop with us. As we entered the loop of the bike course we took a right onto Valley Rd-which was a complete gravel pit! The township of Verona decided to lay rock down the day before. Trying to prevent ourselves from falling we started on the road really slow-but it didn't take long for the first mishap of the bike ride. Cindy got a rock stuck in her chain causing the bike to lock up and her to tumble to the ground. Luckily a group of guys were behind us and helped get Cindy's bike working enough to make it to a bike store along the route. Once we hit the bike store in Cross Plains, Cindy got her bike fixed completely and we loaded up on the freebie treats that were left out for the riders that day. We made it through the rest of the first loop without anymore glitches. At the end of the first loop we looked over a map to find an alternate route to get around the road with the rocks as we didn't want to risk falling or messing up ours bikes again. As I started the second loop, I was starting to feel a lack of energy and crabbiness coming on. I needed some more fuel and the sweet crap was not cutting it, so we stopped in Mount Horeb and I consumed a bag of potato chips and a can of coke. After the refueling I felt a ton better! During the second loop it was pretty uneventful except for the fact that we fought gale force winds.

Once we returned to Monona Terrrace we grabbed a bite to eat with Jake and his friend on State St. Then returned back to the hotel, had a beer and went to bed since Sunday was going to be another longer training session.

Sunday, I woke up pretty early, well I guess it wasn't that early but it was really dark since storms had rolled in. Not knowing how long the storms were going to last Cindy and I packed up our stuff, checked out of the hotel, and made our way into Madison for the run. We started the run off in the rain, but the skies quickly cleared up and the sun came out making it pretty steamy outside. In our lack off preparedness neither Cindy or I printed up a map of the run route which made for an interesting run! We added and deleted streets in hopes that we would get to the places that we needed to be. We took the run pretty easy which was good considering my legs were tight from the previous days workouts. We ended up getting in a total of 13 miles. After the run we grabbed a quick lunch and headed back to the cities.

On the way back, we ended up running head on into some really strong storms outside of Riverfalls causing us to pull off the interstate for about 30 minutes. We sat in a parking lot since there were not any buildings close by to take cover. Cindy and I kept dialing into the weather radars on our phones to watch where the thunderstorm was going. I later had heard that the winds were blowing 60 mph, which explained why the small trees were bent in half! Once the storm let up we got back on the interstate and hoped that we would bypass the rest of the storms coming through.

Overall we lucked out with the weather and completed all the training that we wanted to get in!

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