Sunday, February 28, 2010

Back in action

It's good to be back! I raced yesterday!!!

I was dreading the race when I woke up at 7 a.m. on a Saturday. But I forged on, and by the time the 25k-ers started, I couldn't stop smiling! It was a race! Race season has arrived! We started about 15 minutes later, and I got nervous right before the gun went off. The race was fairly uneventful. Flat, a bit windy on the "out," but therefore perfect for the "back" part. I stayed steady and didn't struggle much. I watched this one woman run, stop and walk, run, walk, looking very winded each time she walked. That was me last year, when I did my winter 5ks. It was good to see how far I'd come. I sped up as I got close to the end and enjoyed my finish.

-Chip time - 35:14; 7:06 splits.
-71 of 114 women
-7th of 8 in my age group -- not last! Acutally, had I been just 6 months older, I would have ended up 12th of 22 in the next age group.

Better results:
After the race ended, I was sitting down eating my bagels and coffee and this guy I saw a couple times along the race came up to me and told me I'd had a good race. Then, get this, he told me I was his fast pace setter and he wasn't able to keep up! It really made my race to know that I had helped push someone. Basically, it made my race.

With 7:06 splits, it means I've got to knock off just more than a minute per K to come in under 30 minutes by the end of the season. I'll have to find some plan for that...suggestions?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The week before

Did you know it's been almost four months since I raced? Crazy! I'm eager, but nervous for my first race of the season (a 5K this Saturday). I'm nervous because while I'm eager, I'm also kind of dreading it. I'm not really sure why. I'm sure it will be awesome...and I'm hoping it gets me totally stoked for Tri Time!

I ran on the treadmill on Monday. I started off too fast and ended up struggling the whole time. I ran 3.1, but with warm up, cool down and two tiny walking stints, I went almost 3.75 miles. Tough workout...and a bit discouraging. Then Tuesday, I did a bike trainer drill workout. That was tough too! My legs were tired, but it felt really productive, so I was happy about that.

I am supposed to swim today, but I think I'm going to stay home and do pilates. I should get out there, but I'm fairly tired and really want to stay home. I'm starting tri-specific training next week, so I figure this is my last chance to skip a swim guilt-free(ish).

Don't worry. I'm not down on working out/training. It may seem like it, but I think I'm just really tired. Things will get back to normal after this race and this week. And I'll rock the 2010 season!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

I'm official!

I did it! I am officially a USAT member! I just signed up. It's pretty exciting. I appreciate everyone's suggestions when it came to whether I should sign up. It's possible I won't get four races fit in to make up for the cost, but even my super-economically-minded boyfriend said it would be worth it for me. I have to agree. And hopefully, I'll find that fourth race! (But let me tell you, Oklahoma is not a huge triathlon state...I know you probably find that hard to believe...)

Now, I just have to wait until my next paycheck to sign up for my first tri of the season!

In other news, I haven't been stellar with the work outs, especially this week. Did I mentioned February was going to be busy? I'm getting them in when I can (mostly), but it hasn't been regular. I think once March hits and basketball season ends, I should have more time (at least more evening time!) to be more consistent. That's when I plan to start training for the tri, which is scheduled for April.

My first race (5K) is next Saturday. I'm back to the point where I can run three miles, and I know I can push myself, so I'm not real worried about finishing. (Plus, next week is a less busy week...) Nick and I did acquire free Thunder basketball tickets for the night before the race, but I'm not too worried. It's a 9 a.m. start at a lake about 45 minutes away, so it's not like I have to be up super early. I'm using this race as a time trial test. I'm going to try to do the best I can, obviously, and run the whole thing, but this isn't my "let's beat 30 minutes" race. This race will give me an idea of how much work I need to do to get a sub-30 5k, and then I can plan a training schedule accordingly. I'm interested to see where I am, but I don't know that I'm going to like it! ;-p Winter hurts everyone, right?

One last point to make...I'm ready for warmer weather to hit! I'm loving that the days are getting longer, but I'm ready to get back OUTSIDE with my workouts! It makes it more enjoyable for me...even if I wouldn't have said so a year and a half ago!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

USAT and the Devil's work

Those things are separate.

1) Should I get a USAT membership? It's $39. I have three triathlons planned, and a fourth would be great if I could fit it in my schedule and budget. If I do four, it'll save me $1, and I get a quarterly magazine. If I only do three, I'm not sure it's worth it. Thoughts?

2) Goggles were created by the Devil to torture swimmers and triathletes. My left goggle would not fuse to my left eye at all today. I literally couldn't get more than two strokes in before my entire left goggle was full of water! It was horrible. I was so frustrated halfway through because I couldn't get a decent swim in that I was nearly in tears. These are Nike, and I got them for Christmas last year. Can goggles lose their suction after a year of regular use? I feel like this Nike brand should be better quality than that. I was doing everything I could think of and it just wouldn't suction onto my face. Just the left eye. I had few problems on the right side. Thoughts? It's making me dread my next swim.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Oh, the trainer

Kayle is always talking about how much she loves her trainer. And while I love the benefit of it -- time on my bike, not exposed to the elements, freedom to do it anytime -- I can't say I love it. My favorite part about riding my bike is being outside and enjoying the day. And, it's harder to motivate to kill my legs by going really fast if I don't get the benefit of feeling the speed and the wind in my face!

But I came across this article in Triathlete. It was about "loving your trainer." It gave three workouts to do on it. One was a steady ride, which is pretty much what I've been doing. (My general routine has been 1 hour on the trainer once or twice a week.) But the other two -- a drill and an interval -- were new. I heard of similar rides, but I was glad to have that article because I've been wondering what to do with it. I took on the drill ride the other day. After a decent 10-minute or so warm up, you bike with just one leg for 30 seconds (taking the other out of the clips) and then switch, and then a two-minute recovery, repeat four times. I figured it would just work my individual leg more, but I had no idea. It was so hard to concentrate to keep a steady circular motion when I wasn't pressing down on my other foot! It took a lot of brain power and some coordination. I enjoyed the challenge. Then, after that, it's speed drills -- take 15 seconds to reach maximum speed without bouncing around, hold for 15 seconds, recover for two minutes. The interesting thing about this drill was that it wasn't hard during the speed...but it seemed like about a minute later, that's when my legs started hurting and struggling. It was interesting too. Finish with about 10 minutes of lighter cycling as a cool down.

All in all, it broke up the monotony of trainer rides for me, and I really enjoyed it. I don't expect to like the interval ride much because I think it will be really hard, but it's probably another good ride. I expect to rotate through the trainer rides each time I cycle to get a good balance. I may even bump up my "long ride" a bit to get a stronger foundation.

February is here and will be crazy for me at work, I expect. I plan to get as many workouts in as possible, but it may not be as much as I'd like. My first race (a 5k) is at the end of the month! Woo!

On a different note, I made this really yummy soup the other day. It's super lumpy and has a lot of beans in it -- totally not my thing generally -- but it's very good and fairly healthy. Love it.