8/18/07

My legs are trashed...

Good thing I just got my Starbucks tall carmel frapachino light or else I'd be fast asleep right now. Yesterday I rode with Karel as he was spinning his legs for an easy hour on the bike. I was going to do an hour with him and continue for a 2 hour ride but what a bummer, I got a flat. I'm always thankful when Karel is there cause he is changes flat tires faster than it takes me to pump up my tires! I was totally bummed about my tire because this was the 3rd flat I have gotten in 3 days of riding Seduza. Karel even put new tires and tubes on my bike but with bad luck following me I have had several opportunities to practice changing flats. I was so bothered by the flat tire that I decided to head home with Karel and go for a nice run. A longer run than I had planned but I was listening to my music and the time was passing by. I ended up with 10 miles of running and I was happy with my pace. I got a haircut on Friday and I must feel a lb. lighter and less hot because of my short haircut. I just love it! Last night karel took me out to an Italian restaurant and I had a yummy vegetarian pizza to get me carbo-loaded for a good weekend of training. This morning I was thankful that I had my buddy to join me for coffee at 5:30am as karel and I both got ready for a good morning of training. Karel joined some of the Gearlink guys for bridge repeaters and I was out for a solo 2:50 run. My legs felt tired at the beginning but around 45 minutes I was in my zone just feeling my music. The weather wasn't too bad even though I started my run around 6:45am. At around 2 1/2 hours, my legs were starting to hurt. No signs of bonking and again I kept my fuel belt filled with fluids, but my legs were getting tired. I kept my pace but all my weekly running really catches up to me on the weekends. After 19 miles of running, I jumped on my road bike and went for a nice 20 mile spin. I can run 19 miles and it goes by rather quickly but I'll tell ya..that 20 mile bike seems to take forever!! Maybe it is my 16 mph pace as I nicely spin my legs but when I get home after the ride I'm thankful that I recovered my legs. After my smoothie (thank you Karel!) I made myself a yummy breakfast w/ a slice of leftover pizza and an hour or so later it was time for Starbucks! A quick stop to see Karel at work and give him his mocha Frapachino and now I am home ready to crash.
I want to wish the Iron Girl competitors good luck this weekend in Columbia, MD and a special good luck to Angela (from BT) at the Tiberland 70.3 triathlon who I have been helping with her nutrition.
Have a great weekend everyone!

8/17/07

It's all coming together..

Last week was big and I anticipate that I have bigger weeks to come. With around 8000 meters of swimming, 287 miles of cycling and 46 miles of running I deserved my day off on monday. Tuesday, wed and thursday were normally training days and I have been searching the web for as much information on the Ironman World Championships. Whereas I didn't let myself google competitors, look at course maps (in detail) and check out anything Kona-Ironman related, I am now devouring myself in everything Kona-Ironman related. I can tell I'm getting stronger and everything is coming together nicely. I don't just want to go to Kona and participate, I want to race. I want to give it my all and leave everything out on the big Island. I have the 70.3 clearwater world championships to have fun and participate but there is nothing "fun" about Kona. I am going there and staying focused when I am there. OK-so I am sure I will have a blast talking to people, taking a billion pictures and writing on my blog 10 times a day but come October 13th I am all about racing 140.6 miles as fast and effecient as I can.
I'm looking forward to this weekend 'cause my parents are coming over to Karel and I's place on Sunday. Karel bought a new Plasma 42" Elite TV a couple weeks ago and my dad and him have an overdo "TV date". As for my mom and me, I'm sure we will just laugh at the boys being boys. I'm always excited to see my parents. More so, I will have my weekend training finished and I can enjoy the little bit of normalcy I welcome into my life on sunday afternoon.
This weekend is the Publix Triathlon and I will have to pass on participating. Good luck to everyone racing.

8/13/07

Drive 100 miles or Ride 100 miles????

For me..I'd rather ride 100 miles and that is what I did on sunday.
As part of my Kona training last year, 100 miles was my biggest training ride and I did it 4 times prior to IMFL. Now I am 8 weeks away from the World Championships and I have been feeling a little unprepared for the long workouts. Mostly because my long rides have been around 60 miles with the Gearlink guys. So, although I have been pushing myself for 40 mile workouts and tough interval training sessions I had no idea how I would feel for 100 or more miles at my own pace (whatever that may be). The goal of Sunday's workout was to practice my nutrition (fluids, gels and bars) and to stay within 120-130 HR zone. Last summer I could barely get my HR up to 120 without feeling the burn due to my inexperience on the bike and a tendency to create lactic at a low percentage of my max heart rate. My HR is much lower on the bike than for running but that is expected. When I started my ride I could barely get above 17 mph. What a bummer to start my workout. I must have stopped 3 or 4 times and checked my wheels for flats or my brakes for rubbing. I guess I can't always blame mechanics it was simply me going slow. After around 45 min. I decided to give a little more power to my pedal stroke and my HR was in around 125. For the wed. night rides I am absolutely at my max and my HR is usually around 150 or so. I checked the speed at my 125 HR and I was cruisin at around 20 mph. Nice! I just focused on my HR and ignored my speed but whenever I checked out my odometer.....20mph!!!! After a couple hours, I was still feeling good. I checked my average speed and it went from 17 to 18 to 18.5 in a matter of a couple hours. Woah baby...I averaged 18 at IMFL and I am pushing 20 mph in a training ride! What a confidence booster! After 4 water bottles of fluids, a couple gels, 1/2 power bar and a few sport beans and cliff blocks I noticed that I was approaching my last 20 miles on the bike. The weather was getting warm since I started at 6:30am and I was getting pretty hot out there. I tried pooring water over my head (which helped) but I could tell that my head was playing a few games on me around miles 80-90. I had one little cramp in my right calf (which has never happened) and after I stopped at the 7/11 for a cold gatorade I felt a lot better. It is good to mistakes in training rides to prevent them from happening in a race. I always do the same things in training that I would in a race so I am physically and mentally prepared. After 5 hours and 29 minutes I was home with 101 miles. Because of my sloooooowwww first hour on the bike, I ended up averaging around 18.5 mph for my ride. I felt really good and I never once felt like the ride was taking forever. I was all alone and I was in my zone. As much as I love training with others, I really enjoy my Ironman training because I can do my own thing and be in my own zone. Those sprint distance tri's are just awful...you have to go fast and you have no option but to push at your max. OUCH!!! :)
After the ride the running shoes (new ones which I bought on friday!!! NICE!) were on my feet and I was out the door for a 20 min. run. It is never a thought to skip the run after a bike. It doesn't matter if it is 2 miles or 6 miles off the bike but I am running. After all that work on the bike it only makes me stronger to give my legs a little taste of what's to come in the Ironman when I hope to run 8 min. miles for 26.2 miles after I have biked 112 miles. Gotta toughen up those legs!!! I had a couple stomach pains around my HR monitor chest strap but it was relieved when I drank water as I was running. Again, probably dehydration. In all, what a great day. And to make things better, Karel finished his race in Georgia and he may have enough points to upgrade from Pro 2 to Pro 1. It is now Monday and I am enjoying my day off from training. Legs are a little sore. Not as sore as my first time riding with the Gearlink guys last summer (I couldn't walk for a week and I only made 2 loops of warm-up on a wed. night ride!!!) but I can tell I need this day off to recover and get strong. I'll finish this day off with a good night of rest, going to bed at my normal time of 9:30 waking up at 4:40am. Seduza is resting and I have no intention of riding her or Blue. I will enjoy my time off today, eat some ice cream later tonight (Yumo!) and get myself ready for another great week of training. As I mentioned before, 100 miles was my longest distance on the bike last summer. So, in an effort to step things up this summer I hope to get in many more long bike rides of more than 100 miles. Thanks for the support everyone....Kona will be here before I know it!

8/12/07

Doing it solo ....

After Friday's workout, I was looking forward to a BIG weekend of training. I was a little nervous because my long training sessions are very indicative of how my weekly training is going. Since Karel was off in Georgia, I enjoyed my Friday evening watching TV and catching up on emails. Friday is my favorite night with karel 'cause we don't have to train in the evening and we are getting ourselves ready for lots of weekend training. Saturday morning I woke up early to start my long run by 6:30 am and I wanted to be sure I had enough time to get myself cleaned up with food in my stomach before a YMCA meeting at noon. The run went really well and I didn't have any bad moments. I did get new shoes on Friday so my feet were really happy! I saw a couple of my friends as I was running (jennifer, Gay and Tony) so that really makes a long run more entertaining. I ended up with 2 hours and 30 minutes of running with lots of fluids to help myself stay hydrated. I wear my fuel belt and listen to my sony radioshack radio (I have a nano, but I love my old school radio!) and I was very conscious of refilling my fuel belt flasks. I also enjoy my hammer gels (vanilla is my favorite!) and I am really into sport beans and Clif blocks when the gels start getting boring. After almost 17 miles of running, I was ready to hop on my bike for a nice spin. I always like to bike my run route to see exactly how far I ran. For some reason, the bike afterwards seems to take forever!!! Seriously, I complain about a 17 mile bike ride and I just ran 17 miles!!! Silly me. I was doing well for time but all of a sudden...FLAT!! I stayed calm and told myself that I know how to change flats (thanks to Karel, over and over and over again making me change tires before IMFL). In record time, I changed the flat in 8 minutes. I always struggle with putting the tire on the wheel after I put in the new tube. My 650 wheels don't make it very easy and I always end up with blisters on my small hands. I pedalled home for the last 4 miles after my flat and quickly mixed up a smoothie, jumped in the shower, prepared a piece of toast and headed off for my meeting. I barely made it in time but I guess accidents happen and I couldn't control the flat. Oh well. The meeting was good and I headed home to spend the day with my mom. She loved her presents for her b-day and my mom, dad and I spent some of the afternoon just talking. Of course I miss my brother but I love being around my mom and dad. In the early evening I was back to Dunedin to feed the cat and get myself ready for Sunday....the big day!! A century.....I'll let you know how that went in a bit :)
Congrats to Karel!!! With an ok performance in the TT he did AWESOME in the circuit race. The Georgia Cup race in Dahlonega was ridiculously difficult with mega climbing (7-20% grades) and some of the best riders around the area. Karel really wanted to do well at this National Cycling Calendar race so that he could get enough points to move up to Category 1 (the highest category). He was 10th in the circuit race and I think that is just amazing. Today he was 20th in the 160K Road race where him and Anthony worked together to get themselves over 7 huge gaps and 2 loops of really hard climbs. Congrats karel and anthony!!