2/15/08

Race weekend and Ironman is on TV!

Karel has a big race this weekend. The Race for Humanity Road Race and Crit. We are both really excited because this could be a really good weekend for Karel. As for me, I will be cheering while Karel is beating himself to the ground to pull out a good finish. I told him that he knows the race will be hard but the more you want it, the harder you will have to work. Aside from cheering for his team (Linder Capital) I will be practicing my almost perfect feed zone water bottle passes. I think I am 100% accurate but perhaps there were 1 or 2 times at Karel's first race which I watched where I didn't run fast enough as I was passing him the bottle. It's very hard when they are racing for 75-100 miles but I only see him once every 15-20 miles (or every 45 min). That is a lot of pressure. I thought watching the race was stressful but when I see them coming around the corner, I am scared out of my mind that I will mess up and Karel won't be able to grab his Hammer Sports Drink. Oh the pressure!! Just kidding :) I will be at the race most of the day tomorrow. I will start off my day with a 3 hour ride but then I will have to be snappy to take a shower and get in a good breakfast. Karel's race starts at 12:30 and it is 84 miles in the hills of Florida (san antonio). Sunday at 12:15 Karel has the Crit in Dade City which will be super hard and super fast...just like the road race. I will post updates by the end of the weekend. The best of luck to Karel and his team!!!
And since you have nothing else to do, don't forget to watch the Ford Ironman World Championships on NBC at 2 EST on Saturday. If you are missing that push or a little inspiration to step up (or start) your training program, just watch the broadcast and you will be ready to swim, bike and run in no time. And be sure to tape the broadcast. During the last 5 minutes, you will see me cross (be carried away) on the finish line. My head is down, I have my oakley pink sunglasses on and a white Zoot jersey. You can also see my big polar watch. If you don't see me but you see the 80 year olds just skipping across the line like the Ironman was a walk in the park, then you went too far :) Oh the memories of crossing that finish line. It still hurts to think about it but it was so worth it!

2/13/08

What I learned in Biology lab

First to training. After I taught a grueling spin class I jumped on the treadmill for a 7 mile run. The first 40 min. were at an easy pace. I went 10 min at 7 (1% incline), 10 min at 7.2 and repeated that twice. why an easy pace? well, I had my medical terminology text book infront of me and I needed to study and retain information. I have a cardiovascular quiz tonight so where else to study about systemic and pulmonary blood flow than on the treadmill. Honestly, I don't think I could have gotten through graduate school without training for the Miami marathon in 2005. Almost 95% of my runs (with my longest being 3 hours, around 20 miles) on the treadmill I might as well had my laptop with me. When I ran at 24-hour fitness in Davie, Florida everyone knew me and my treadmill was filled with notes. If I am running at a comfortable pace I can read while I run but if I am doing intervals or something fast, there is no way I can focus, let alone think straight when I'm in the zone. so after 40 min. of studying/running, I bumped up the speed and I ran 5 min. at 7.5 mph pace. Not too shabby. decided to take it up a bit and did some intervals of 1 min at 8.1 mph and 30 sec at 7.5 mph. I guess I am slowly getting my speed back. Not trying to think of where I was last summer as I was training for Kona but rather where I want to be in May for IM Florida 70.3
So, now to bio lab. since I am surrounded with teenagers I feel very old in my classes. Yet when I am with my training partners, my age 25 is at least 10 years younger than most of my friends...who are crazy fast. As we were waiting for our lab projects to react, we had a little down time to talk. The 4 guys at the table behind me were looking at an Apple phone (I think that is the kind...the one with the internet and all the gadgets) and they were laughing really loud. I wanted to know what was so funny so they showed me. I thought I would pass along what was entertaining them (and me) in biology class. After you watch the first clip (watch for language!), check out the 2nd and 3rd ones. What a great education I am getting! haha
  • My new hair cut

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  • 2/12/08

    No more excuses...get faster!

    The first week of classes was rough. I couldn't wake up at 4:40am for my 5:30am swim and I was too tired in the afternoon to train after a day of studying and 1-2 classes. After 2 weeks of getting myself on a schedule I'm finally getting into a routine which involves training, studying, class, writing, eating, sleeping and relaxing (in no particular order). I've learned that waking up and thinking if I should or shouldn't train is a sign of being tired..AKA I don't WANT to train. Now I am waking up, jumping right out of bed and looking forward to training. It is much harder to make excuses and wonder when or even if you will work out during the day. I just get it over and if I feel like training in the afternoon, I already have one solid workout knocked out from the am. Also, I find that I am just misserable if I don't do something in the morning. Even if it is just a walk, I just don't like going all day without a good sweat in the morning. If I need a day off to prevent overtraining or burnout I absolutely know when that is needed and I don't think twice about staying in bed or lounging around. But not working out because I made a silly excuse is just a lousy reason to miss a workout. I woke up this morning excited to swim. Of course at 4:40am my excitement is shown by bumping into doors, spilling a little coffee and stumbling as I am putting on my swim suit. Luckily, most days I have Karel to greet me in the morning and it is nice to have both of us up so early in the morning. As for this morning, he has an off day (two days in a row due to his big race weekend coming up!!!). So when I saw karel as I was pouring my coffee, I told him "you don't have to get up this early!" He gave me a kiss on the cheek good-bye and told me "I know, I'm going back to bed!" Oh, so lucky! Swim was good this morning. Lots of people in the pool with barely enough light from the sky to allow us to see the walls. Most of the workout was drills, which are almost as tiring as main sets. I have a feeling thurs will be a little more intense. Like two weeks ago when i had to do 8 x 125 pull on 2 min. Ouch, sore shoulder. During the 2400 swim workout i was thinking about this summer and racing. Now that I am back into a routine of feeling good, I am ready to get faster. I think I lost my fastest for good reason (injury) so I am willing to work hard again and regain some speed. The endurance is coming along nicely but if I want to compete again at Ironman Florida 70.3 (Disney) I will need to keep working at (and above) my lactate threshold. I wasn't really looking forward to a run after the swim since I am usually doing plyo's and lifting with karel on tues. Well, I was solo this morning so I thought about getting faster and i knew the only way that would happen would be to get on the treadmill and run. After 15 min of running I was bumping up the speed for a little interval set. I did 5 x 2 min at 8 mph and I felt pretty solid for those. With 1 min rest at 7.2 mph in between, I finished the run with 6 miles. I jumped off the treadmill and felt fine. I think i will bump up the number of intervals to 6 or 8 next week but not much faster. Once I feel comfortable with the speed and number of intervals, then I will get back to my old running pace of 8.5-9mph. It might take a while to get there but that is the way to do it. Overtime you get faster, it doesn't happen overnight. That is what I love about training...if you don't make excuses you get faster!

    2/10/08

    How do you do it?

    To all the mom's out there. Specifically, Bree Wee, Angela Bancroft and Katie Jongerius...my three mommy-triathletes that I feel I know as friends due to lots of blog reading and emails :) I just don't get it how you get it all done?? I have had the busiest weekend and still smiling cause I know it could be worse. Not that having kids would be worse (I can't wait til I have little Marni/Karel's running around...or riding around in Karel's eyes) but I have been super busy I feel like the weekend was only 1 hour long. And that was the one hour I laid on the couch on friday night and watched part of a movie with Karel. I've been doing great with my training by the way. Getting in two workouts a day on tues and thurs and swimming hard 2 days a week. Last thurs was one of my best swim sets of 4 x (4 x 75) on 1:30, 1:20, 1:10 and 1 min! Thurs and Fri I ran after swim (and fri ran after Karel and I lifted) and I felt just great. I got in an hour run both days and felt just super. I even rode tues, thurs and fri afternoon and felt great on my road bike. I am just so super busy with things that I choose to do to keep me busy. As far as if I had a baby around here, that would be something that was not a choice but rather a priority. I just don't know how you all do it?? Lots of props to the mommies and daddies who train, work, sleep, eat and still have time to relax with friends/families and your significant other. Although Karel and I have different schedules, that is one of the best things about our relationship. We have an equal relationship where we both understand what it takes to be an Elite athlete. But one day when I am ready I will take on that task of being that tri-mommy. But for now, in my baby-free..super busy weekend.
    Friday evening Karel came home around 8pm from his easy spin and I had angel hair pasta, semi-homemade marinara sauce, bread w/ fresh mozzerella and veggies ready for him. Sorry about not having a picture. Karel was sitting at the kitchen table well before I even thought about getting out my camera. Hey, the boy's gotta eat to get ready for his race. Saturday morning the alarm was set for 5:30am. Not for training but for the Gasparilla race. I was working a booth for Race Place from 7am-12 at the Tampa convention center. I thought about signing up for the race but since I wasn't sure if I was ready to "race" yet, I thought helping out would be just as good. I saw many familiar faces which was great for my spirit but the best part was walking to the convention center. I had my running shorts on, my Ironman World Championship Finisher hoodie on (so proud to wear that, I must admit), hair in a high ponytail and I was wearing my new pink mizuno wave rider running shoes. Aside from my hoop earrings, I looked like all the 5K and 15K runners. And not only did I have the look but I had the nerves and excitement as if I would be running the race. Over the past couple of months I wasn't sure if I missed racing. I have been devoting my time off from racing (due to that horrible pre-kona un-diagnosed injury) to my passion of sports nutrition. After walking into that arena as a non-registered athlete, I feel I can 100% equally split my passions of racing and sports nutrition. I love them both and I don't know what I would do if I didn't race and fulfill my dreams and if I didn't help others to fulfil their racing and nutrition dreams. So after 5 hours of standing on my feet, talking to people about signing up for the chilly willy duathlon and the Escape from Ft.desoto tri, I was heading back to my car to head to the Clearwater Y. I really wanted to run on after I worked the expo but I was searching for the strength to actually get to the gym and not just head home. Ever since my injury, I never miss an opportunity to run if I have the motivation and energy to run. Even if it is 7pm or 6am, all I have to do is think about 4 months of no running and being in pain for almost 2 months straight and I have plenty of reasons to get my butt out the door and run. So as I am heading back to Clearwater with my trusty GPS and I zoned out and missed my exit for 60. I didn't dare call Karel and tell him that I am now driving over 30 miles out of my way and heading to new port richey on 275N instead of heading west. Karel got me the GPS so I wouldn't get lost all the time and call him crying that I have no idea where I was heading. Well, I knew where I was heading and I was totally out of luck for turning around and back tracking. I decided to continue to new port richey and run on the suncoast trail and visit my dad afterwards. Now here is where I thought about you mommies out there. It is 12:45pm when I arrive on the trail. I can't remember the last time that I have ran past 8am in the morning. Aside from Kona training when i would run at 1pm after a 100+ mile ride, I don't enjoy running in the afternoon and starting my day with a run is the only way I really know how to have a good run. Well, I pulled out my inner strength and started running when I arrived to the running/cycling trail (paved). With my head phones on and my music going, I was really enjoying my run and I feel I could run at anytime of the day if I just told myself to do it more often. I think nutrition needs to be right on and regular if you choose to run at lunch or mid-day, so with that in mind, bring it on lunchtime run! After 1 hour and 25 minutes, I was finished running and ready for a shower and some food. I visited my dad and we chatted for a bit as I enjoyed a nice cold glass of milk before a late lunch. I finally arrived back in Clearwater at 4pm and crashed on the couch right before Karel came home from work (bummer that he has to work on sat. The life of a cyclist who works at a cycling company - Gearlink.com). After a quick rest on the couch, at 6pm karel and I were out the door for a wine tasting event for a lady who is raising money for Team in Training. I recently did a nutrition consultation for her and we were invited to a wine tasting to raise money for 100 mile ride as a charity ride. Well, since I don't drink I enjoyed the great great great food (bread, nuts, cheese..oh I was super happy!) and karel enjoyed 10 glasses of wine (not full glasses!) for the tasting. He is a big wine drinker and with his European upbringing, I really find joy when Karel and I can be together and he can tell me stories or anything about Czech and his family. In this case, Karel was enjoying every moment with the tasting and he also enjoyed meeting some of my tri friends and learning how to taste wine. No surprise, if food is involved, Karel is a happy man. After an entertaining 3 hours with good food and lots of people, we headed home and were ready to go to bed. Around 9:45 the lights were off and I was almost out. With no TV in our bedroom and only a fishtank, we watched our fishes for a few minutes and then I was fast asleep. So now were are onto sunday. I woke up early and headed out on my bike around 7am. With my super grover jersey on, I felt just great. I think I put a couple smiles on the faces of other riders out on the roads today. After 51 miles, I was back home only to miss Karel who left for Gainsville 5 min. before I arrived. Bummer. No good bye and good luck for him so I had to give him a phone call. He won't talk to me before his race (he gets into his zone and does his thing) so I had one opportunity to wish him good luck and that was 6 hours before his race :) Karel had a race this afternoon and I just received a quick call from him that he was 5th in the field sprint. He said there was a crash right before the finish and that threw him off from the main pack and he had just enough juice to almost catch up with the top guys. In the crit races which Karel loves there is a lot going on in the <1 mile loop. congrats to his team...I am sure I will hear more details later.
    After I got myself cleaned up and had breakfast, I worked on a nutrition plan for someone who is doing an ultra run. I will have to fill you in on more details about this but for now you can visit runfortheinnocent.com . After the nutrition plan, I worked on my biology lab report all afternoon since it is due on tues. Almost finished except for some graphs which I need to do on excel but my brain is in overload right now. At 4pm it was time for grocery shopping but I was not alone on this one. I am mentoring a senior high student (daughter of one of the guys who rides with the Gearlink team) who is doing her senior project on becoming healthier. We spent an hour at the grocery store as I got groceries as taught her about reading labels and looking for affordable and healthy food. With an almost college freshman, this comes at a great time to teach her how to learn how to eat and stay healthy and not develop bad habits in college. After the grocery I stopped at the produce market on my street to get some veggies and fruit (so much cheaper than the grocery) and at 5:30 I was home for the evening. I am now finished with everything and thinking about calling it a night. I will probably fall asleep on the couch and wake up when Karel gets home later this evening. What a weekend. Now I am exhausted and looking forward to filling my brain with information for the next three days in school. Alright moms, what's your secret????

    Good Luck Karel

    I'll post more later today but I wanted to give a good luck shout-out to Karel and the Linder Capital Racing Team today. Karel is heading to gainsville for a Crit race which starts at 4:30pm. I'll be staying here...studying :( Just finished my coffee and toast w/ PB and a few nuts and I'm ready to get on my bike. I'm going to wear my sesame street Super Grover jersey that Karel got me for the holidays. I wonder if I will get more looks by kids on their bikes loving the jersey or adults on their bikes wondering why a kid is riding such an expensive bike!!! Confession: I'm 25 years old and I love grover!!! How could you not? Too cute!