Wednesday, August 31, 2011


I am tired of whining. I am tired of crying. I am tired of having no confidence. I am tired of forgetting how much training I did put in. I am tired of the "what if I didn't go to the Dr. 2 weeks ago" game. I am tired of my butt/hip hurting after 40 minutes on the bike around Hains Point. I am tired of it hurting after walking 2 blocks. I am tired of hurting all the time. I am tired of it all. It just sucks.

So, moving on. The Person Cook shared this via his google reader and I died laughing. I am looking forward to the day where this is my biggest problem in regards to my workouts.

Monday, August 29, 2011

I Will Try Almost Anything

At this point, I am very much wanting a magical cure that will fix all my physical issues NOW. However, I know that is not realistic so I am going with Plan B - try whatever my PT suggests. During my session this morning, I explained what happened on the bike and how hills did not go well - and that this is concerning because Wisconsin is a hilly course. She wasn't that concerned, and said I should talk to Coach about having an 'aggressive taper'. Do stuff, but not to the point of pain. Plus, my core work has improved, especially in terms of stabilization. This was good and the progress has been noticeable.

So given all those factors, and 2 weeks to the race, she suggested Dry Needling. I remembered Kelzie having a post about dry needling from SSPT, so I figured why not. I had a bit of a hard time fully relaxing with all the needles in my back, but all seemed to go okay. The back muscles twitched as they were supposed to and I should know in a day or two how successful the treatment went.

And then I went to the pool for my swim - which I was allowed to do. But, dry needling and swimming = a very unhappy back.

Oh well, I will keep trying anything and everything people suggest. And as Dena told me tonight "Things don't often work out as planned, however they always work out as they should".

This Past Weekend

I haven't posted about this past weekend because I don't want to actually write it out. It was supposed to be such a happy day. Karen organized a K-Train Moo Taper ride with a special rest stop. The rest stop idea was scratched due to the weather and a little (let down of a) hurricane that was headed our way. But Bryan, thank you so much for offering up your home, with BACON, and I am so sorry we had to miss out.

Alejandro rode with me for the first part of the ride and it was great to catch up with him. I am SO EXCITED that he will be in Madison to cheer and sherpa and cheer. Karen rode with me the second part of the ride and it was good to hear about some of the off season activities she has planned. Remember, for some reason, a bunch of us do what Karen tells us to do...

Overall, it was about 2 hours and 45 minutes, around 40 miles. The problem? It hurt. It was uncomfortable. Especially on the hills. I kept telling myself they were just momentary moments of discomfort. Cramping, muscle spasms, the pain just sitting on my saddle - they would all just go away. And sometimes they did. Especially after I stretched at the gas station and took some Motrin. And when I stopped riding in aero. But the pain, spasms, and discomfort all came back at different points during the ride. I don't think I went more than 10 minutes where I felt comfortable.

Needless to say, it was a mental blow. I'm having a hard time remembering all the training I have done over the past few months because all I can think about is what I am not doing now.

But all I can say is that on September 11th, I will be in Lake Monona, I will swim 2.4 miles, I will get on my bike, and I will see what happens.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Another Reason I Am Lucky

About 2 weeks ago, I posted about how lucky I am. I had a little mental breakthrough about my ability to swim/bike/run and how no matter what happens, all will be okay. And I am SSSOOO lucky I had that realization when I did - i.e. before my back/butt/hip/SI went all crazy.

Also, I have very supportive friends and family. And I am not just talking about the support they have shown me over the past week. I have been meaning to post about this for awhile, so tonight just seemed to be a good time.

When Sandy and I headed to Lake Placid, I hopped into her car to start our road trip and she handed me a present.I have felt better ever since!

Also at Lake Placid, Karen gave me a little "Congrats on your LP Half" (before she realized I was 1 mile over and 5 miles short).How cute! And I now have my race day socks.

Finally at Lake Placid, I received and AWESOME sherpa present from Alejandro.
He had such an amazing race and I was so happy to be there for his day. And yes, I know it's not a great pic (of me, Alejandro looks great), but I wanted to get the shirt in, and not just my back. Oh well.

Now we get to my family. The best brother in the world sent me a "You will do great" card. Unfortunately (actually, fortunately) the mail system was a tad delayed in getting me the card. So, he sent another card. They arrived the same day. So, fortunately, I got 2 cards :-) Thanks best brother ever!

And my parents. They have sent me inspirational presents every month. Their constant and support and understanding of my choices for these crazy activities is nothing less than amazing. And your humor is spot on. Thank you. And thank you for more than just the presents.

Tomorrow - I get to ride. Hopefully for 2-3 hours, pending any pain and Irene...

Thursday, August 25, 2011



Okay, I know that doesn't sound too good, but trust me, it was. I crawled out of bed at 5:30 to darkness and the sounds of howling wind. However, I needed to know if biking was possible.

To my pleasant surprise, Kimberly and Karen were both at HP for some biking as well. We all started together and Karen quickly start to CRUSH HP for her loops. This gave Kimberly and I some time to catch up. Which was also a very nice distraction from the nausea I kept feeling. I was trying to figure out what was better/worse - areo or sitting up. It was the same nauseous feeling I had last week with the dull pain down my leg. But I wasn't in pain, pain... Well, I was kind of, but I think that was more my undercarriage not being happy about being on a bike again after a week. Same with my legs in general. I think... Anyway, Janie was also out and when she passed she made a very nice comment about how good it was to see me back on the bike - which is exactly how I felt. It was good to be back on the bike.

I stopped after an hour and now have more hope than I did at 6 this morning.

I am going to take tomorrow off, expect for PT. Hopefully I will get some good news and can bike a good 2 hours on Saturday before we get hit with our next natural disaster...

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Thanks Girls At The Gym

(Wednesday's Post)

I feel that not many funny things have happened to me this year. I haven't fallen over as much (thank you Power Balance Band - more on that in a later post). Snot rockets haven't been as needed - Allegra works. And this is really my third year of endurance training. Sometimes I forget that I did 2 aqua velo halves (technically 1, but I still biked in a race 56 miles) and one full AV (2.4 mile swim and 112 mile bike). Yes, they were all flat courses, but still... This training thing has become part of my daily life, not just a fun new challenge.

But, I can always rely on the gym in my building to provide me entertainment. Especially today.

I walked into the locker room to change, it was around noon-thirty, and a woman was BELTING out whatever song was on the musiac. It Mariah Carey or something. Anyway, she could care less that there were about 7 other women changing. She just got her grove on, actually using her brush as a microphone. You Go Girl!

I got onto a treadmill to start my 30 minutes of power walking. Before I knew it, the other 3 were also in use, and there was a name on the board for the next machine. I am very aware of when people are waiting because I HATE it when people take more than their allotted 30 minutes. I could feel the woman glaring at me from the StairMaster, but the moment my time went from 29.59 to 30.00, I hit stop and got off. She promptly got on (before I could wipe it down), took her hair down from a centered ponytail, and put it into a SIDE PONYTAIL! She then proceeded to set the speed at 6.0 mph, run, and try to fix the SIDE PONYTAIL. I don't know why this struck me as so amusing, but it did.

Thank you Mariah Carey singer and side ponytail girl. You made my day.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

That Was Scary

So, in case you were under a rock - a rock that didn't move, we had a little earthquake this afternoon. I have to admit, I did not react well. See my second day of work, when I was 22 and fresh off the boat from the midwest, was September 11, 2001. As a result, my pulse raises a bit when I hear a helicopter, any type of loud bang, and when the windows of in my fourth floor office suite start to rattle. I was very freaked out, thinking it was the worst. We all evacuated the building and it was rumored, and confirmed, it was an earthquake, 5.8. Now I can say I have been through an earthquake. Something I would have been just fine not saying...

After figuring out what to do, a bunch of us just walked around. I eventually made it home and relaxed on the couch. The entire days events shook me (ha) and I just needed to relax. But facebook lightened my mood and if I may quote Sandy without her permission "I don't know how Californians do it. I couldn't remember if I should get into the bathtub or under a table. Instead, I went to secure the wine rack/glasses. I think I need to reevaluate my emergency protocol."

I then realized I needed to tackle my next fear - the bike. I SSSSOOOOO wanted it to feel good, or at least normal. While I can't say that was true, I can say I wasn't in a lot of pain. I have to remember that I couldn't walk on Thursday, my muscles are pretty f'ed up right now, and it's going to take time. And more than 5 days. But hopefully less than 19.

Mental Training

One thing I am really happy about is the fact I kept a blog for my first Ironman. I have the ability to go back and re-read how I was feeling, what I was doing, and how I was reacting during my ignorant bliss phase. I say ignorant bliss because I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I just read August, and man - there are so many differences and so many similarities.

One thing I have going for me this time around is the obvious. I am already an Ironman. Even if I don't finish, no one can take away the fact that I crossed the finish line on September 7, 2008 in 15 hours 41 minutes and 7 seconds.

Knowing that I am already an Ironman also has a downside - I know the work I put in last time and I just don't think I am there. The majority of the rides I did this time were much more challenging. So my speed is actually about the same, or maybe even slower, but on harder routes. However, I don't have those one or two 90+ mile rides I really needed for mental confidence.

And the 'run'. I don't even want to THINK about how unprepared I am to run/walk a marathon. Last time I had many more 2-3 hour runs. This time, just a few, and they didn't go well. But just as I bike harder courses, I have better running technique. And I am trying to remember and focus on that positive point.

So basically, I am all over the place. This stupid SI joint is causing some pain in my right hip and knee and it's keeping me from doing the training I need these last 19 days. Ironman is SUCH a mentally challenging event, and I know how important it is to stay focused. And I am focused. And surprisingly, mostly positive. But also unsure, and that is the scary part for me. I HATE the unknown - it's why I despise haunted houses, you never know when someone is going to pop out and scare you.

Anyway, I just needed to vent some randomness.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Silly Traffic. Silly DC

This morning I had my next SSPT appointment. I am happy to report that my alignment is getting much better. My core is getting stronger. As are my muscles supporting my spine. YAY! I can continue to walk - but not run. I can bike on the trainer - which I will do tomorrow. And I can keep swimming, which I did tonight.

Wilson, my normal pool, is closed this week for maintenance. So, I headed to Hains Point. Which is not accessible via metro. And since I can't bike, I had to drive. Which meant sitting in DC traffic. And I was very close to pulling all my hair. I.Hate.Traffic!

But I got to the pool and it was a beautiful evening. I hopped into Jenny's lane and she told me the pool was only open until 7. However, the Internet (which never lies!) said 8. She informed me that yes, the pool was open until 8, however a master's swim team came in at 7 and we were no longer allowed to circle swim. But the pool stayed open... Yup, that sure makes sense! Even with stupid traffic and silly DC pool information not being 100% correct on the Internet, I managed to swim 2000 meters.

And thanks to Travis for letting me use is FB picture of the pool he took today. He was gracious enough to wave his $350 fee in exchange for my 'sherpatude' at Lake Placid. HA!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

So This Is A Normal Sunday

Not biking for 7 hours today left me a loss of what to do. Especially because I had to spend a lot of time sitting on an ice pack.

I watched a few bad movies.

I looked at all the stuff I should have put away, and didn't.

I thought about cleaning...

But the day started off with my core work. Then to the Dupont farmers market with Diane. Man, that has really grown in size! I came back and rested, then made some lunch. And rested. Then headed to the gym to hop on the treadmill for an hour. Not running, just a nice speed walk. Then more time on the ice pack. And some cooking.

And back to sitting with an ice pack. Is this what non Ironman training people do on the weekend? With the exception of the sitting on an ice pack? I have to admit, it was kind of nice. But I would have rather been on my bike...

Oh, and PT tomorrow morning!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

I Can Still Walk

And that makes me really happy.

And I swam. And stopped after my 2500 meter swim, and didn't do more like I wanted too. Yay will power!

Also, Coach had me look up the Zatopek Effect. Basically how much rest can really benefit an athlete. I don't feel I have fully earned the rest but I am doing my best to stay positive, do what I can, and not overdo.

Friday, August 19, 2011


I walked the 5 blocks from the metro to SSPT, PAIN FREE, so I knew things were going better.

The session went great and I felt very comfortable with my PT. She read my chart, let me tell the long story about what has happened over the past 3 years. She got right to work doing lots of tests and confirmed it was muscle and not a nerve (yay!). AND, she completely understood the need to get me back to training, or at least the start line, by Sept 11. It's like not getting to the start line wasn't an option. WOOT!

Moving forward this weekend - I can do core work. Stretching. AND I CAN SWIM! Maybe even bike on the trainer after my next session.

But I must keep icing, resting, and taking my meds. Not a problem. I will do everything I can (but not more!) to get to the start line. Then I will feel I have a fighting chance to be and Ironman. Again.

AND, when I was leaving PT, I ran into (almost literally, he was on a moped and almost ran me over) SPIKE!
What a difference 36 hours makes! Thanks everyone for the positive thoughts. I know that has helped more than I can express!!!

I Have Never Cried So Much

Last night was awful! Just awful. My ART doctor said I have a very inflamed sacroiliac joint (SI joint) and there isn't much we can other than ice and ibuprofen. He knew right away based on the way I was walking (swinging my leg out because I can't lift my leg) and where the pain was. Oh, and the fact you can feel the heat from the inflamed section of my back. He said that sometimes these things happen, especially if they have been bothering a person for awhile. So he did some electric stimulation and manual manipulation.

After the appointment, I called the Personal Cook immediately after and just started crying. As much as I didn't want him to see me cry and in pain, or ask for help, he met me at my apartment - with fixings for chicken soup. As he was in the kitchen I tossed and turned in on the couch trying to find a position that was as comfortable as I could get. Which just didn't work. I lost it probably about 5 more times. The pain I felt was just off the charts. The chicken soup helped. All the facebook messages helped. But only so much.

Coach called, after I sent him a frantic email, and we are now on an hour by hour, day to day, plan. There is so much unknown right now, and I hate it. I HATE that I don't know what's going to happen and I how I am going to feel in a day in a week in 3 weeks.

I am taking some meds from my back spams and ibuprofen which is how I got some sleep last night. I haven't moved much today and so the pain is more bearable. I have PT in a little over an hour so hopefully that will help too.

I am trying to stay positive and not play the "what if" game. I keep thinking I should have done that extra 12 miles last week or that extra hour on the bike the other day or the extra 1000 meters in the pool or ran a bit harder - anything that would make me feel more comfortable about the fact I can't train right now. Something to hold onto that I can hopefully still Attempt Ironman Wisconsin.

I just don't know. And I hate it.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Getting Worse

I am not one to cry because of pain and I have tears in my eyes. I could be frustration. Anger. Being scared. All reasons I do cry. But this really hurts. Every movement I make hurts. And that is why I am crying.

The Personal Cook and I had lunch plans and we decided to take bikes. I figured this would be a good test to see how bad the leg/butt/hip really was. I actually thought I would be okay.

Not so much.

And when the PC saw my eyes fill up with tears over Mike Isabella's chicken thighs in a pepperoni sauce at Graffiato, he knew they were not tears of joy.

I am trying really REALLY hard not to panic. I have emailed my Coach. I am going back to the ART Dr today at 4. I have an appointment with a PT (my normal PT is on vaca until mid Sept...) tomorrow at 3. I am freezing my butt, literally - I am sitting on an ice pack. And I have taken a few more Motrin. I am also thinking about my LAST long ride/run I am supposed to do this weekend. And really hoping the past 5 months haven't been for nothing.


And It Was Going So Well

I was super tired the past few days, but embracing the fatigue. Yesterday's brick was a slug fest and my legs were not happy to be spinning (nor was my undercarriage happy to be on the bike). However the 4:1 run/walk went surprisingly okay. I was happy knowing that I am breaking down my body one last time so I can rest and taper to peak on Sept 11.

Yesterday afternoon I headed to my second round of Active Release Treatment (ART) for my right side issues. My hip, hamstring, quad, etc all on the right side have been giving me some issues. Not too bad, but not normal. I didn't want to take any chances, so I went to my trusted ART Dr. After my first session, it was painful but in that good way. My right butt (or gluteus maximus if you will) was bruised, but again, it felt better. So, I had high hopes for yesterday's session. I have been stretching, rolling on the foam roller, all the things I should have been doing.
During the session, he hit one spot where a sharp pain went straight through to my right foot. It was the pain I had described at the beginning of my session that I felt the day before when I rotated/turned to the left. You could feel 3 knots in my glut. He worked on them and things felt a lot better when I left his office.

Then later that evening I went to bed.

Then I woke up do to pain down my right side. And it still hurts. It's that type of intense dull pain that almost makes you nauseous. And when I move my right leg, it often becomes an intense sharp pain. And I don't know what to do. I sent an email to the Dr. I have taken Motrin. I am icing. But it hurts. I know it's muscle. And this is not good. I'll take today off from workouts and hope tomorrow feels better. But if anyone has any suggestions, PLEASE let me know.

And if you have voodoo doll of me, please remove all the pins until after IM Moo. PLEASE. Thank you.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I Can Still Have Fun

Even though I am in my last build phase.... SCARY!

Anyway, last night was one of my favorite nights of the summer. It was the evening where my favorite band played at Wolf Trap. An outdoor venue for the performing arts (music, dance, plays, etc.) that has a lot of lawn seating and you can bring your own food and beverages. Yes, that includes wine. :-) So the Personal Cook and I got tickets as soon as they went on sale - when I didn't put 2 and 2 together about timing. But, as I have said before, it's all about choices. And in about the past 8 years, I don't think I have ever missed seeing Guster play at Wolf Trap, and I wasn't about to start now.

It just took some creative scheduling so I can get in all (or at least most) of my workouts done. But I'm not worried. Becuase Coach is not worried. AND, he seemed extremely happy with my weekend. He actually said "I think the weekend went awesomely (is that a word?)".

Yesterday was a run. Which I had to do at lunch. It was hot, but not that hot. This morning I swam and I am splitting my bike between lunch on the stationary bike and after work on trainer before I have another appointment tonight. See, creative scheduling so I can still have fun...

I can sleep in 4 weeks.
But I do need to figure out how to get my laundry done as I am out of sports bras. And bike shorts. And my apartment is really starting to stink...

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I Am Consistent...

Today was my last 'race' before IM Moo. I use the term loosely because it was just a swim. But a 2.4 mile swim. And I was timed. So it counts as a race, right?

It was HarborFest, and I did the DC Tri Club 2.4 mile IronSwim. Kind of a last minute decision, and one I am happy I made. All the swimmers arrived around 7 or 7:30, and the race was supposed to start at 8:15. Mother Nature had another idea and we were delayed about 25 minutes. But, better to be safe. Or, as safe as you can be when swimming in the Potomac... And it gave us a chance to take an IM Moo picture!
(6 of the 15 or so DC Tri club members participating in IM Moo 2011! IN 4 WEEKS!)

We all, tentatively, jumped into the water, and waited for the gun to start us on our 5 lap race. It's always moments like this I am thankful, when you are without a wet suit (water temp was around 82 - so no wet suits) that I can tread water without much effort.

The start and first lap weren't too bad. There were about 40 or 45 people so not too much kicking and fighting for position.
Time - 16.35
Lap 2 I noticed I was 2 other guys pretty close to me. So, I got behind one of them and just drafted. Took it easy, did some breaststroke, tried not to drink the water.
Time - 16.28
Lap 3 I left the 2 guys and took off. Or so I thought I did. I was feeling pretty good, but also noticed I was pulling to the left one side of the course, and to the right the other side of the course. Strange. Also on the way back, I saw my Personal Cook on the dock waving at me. I stopped and said a quick hello, he told me I was looking good, and I said that I had 2 more laps. I had my ear plugs in, so that is what I think we said...
Time - 16.31
Lap 4 is when I realized the buoys were not in a line any more - I wasn't that off on my pulling. The wind really picked up so I am pretty sure that is why. Also, once you were more into the open water, no longer shield by the dock, things were a tad bit rough. It did make sighting a more of a challenge, especially because I was on my own. Another wave to the PC and I was ready for my final loop.
Time - 16.32
Lap 5 was even more choppy, but I just tried to sight the turn buoys and forget the other ones. I did get a bit of a foot cramp, which reminded me that I just don't kick. Ever. But I really tired to push the last length and focus on pulling from my back. PC made the universal "CRUSH IT" pose - which I almost choked on some Potomac water, and I finished.
Time - 16.31.
Total time-ish, 1 hour 22 minutes, 45 seconds. 5th female and 13th overall.

I tend to judge my swims by my placement, not by time. It's really hard to measure a course correctly, and keep it that way for the entire event, so I was very happy with my placement.

As for the time, at IM Moo I will be tapered, there will be more people to draft off of, and I will have a wet suit. So, I am hoping to go 5-7 minutes faster.

But everyone had a great event and hopefully no one gets sick... you never really know about the water quality of, or what is in, the Potomac...

I Ate a Peach

And paid $50 to do so... Oh, and I got some water. And a BUTT kicking cue sheet.

I knew going into Saturday's 'century' ride was going to be tough. In fact, when I told Toby I was planning on doing the ride she made a face. You know, that face that says "Really? Are you sure you want to do that ride? I know you are a bit fragile and questioning your riding, so that might not be best for you" look. So I checked in with Laurel, who also did the ride a few years back and she was nice enough to find me an alternative ride option. AKA, it's a hard ride. But after talking about it with Coach, we decided to treat it more as a mental challenge. Goal 1, don't cry. Goal 2, don't worry about speed and especially speed going up hills.

So I drove up to Westminster, MD, paid my $50, got my cue sheet of 67 miles (there was a 33 mile loop to finish the full century) and headed out with Sandy and Jen. The first 20 miles weren't too bad. I was doing a pretty good job with my hills and focusing on other things than my speed. I got to the rest stop just as Sandy and Jen pulled out, I refilled my water, and headed out myself.
The next 29 were a bit tougher. And not just because it rained. Yes, the temperature was perfect, the overcast was nice, but the rain - not so much. It was good practice, but still... No fun. Another rest stop, more water, and I was off back to the starting point.
The last 20 were more climbing, with one really hard climb (stupid Kate Wagner! That was the name of the road and whoever she was, she hated bikers) 1 mile from the finish. After 2 wrong turns, I finished the first loop around 68 miles.

100 miles was never my plan. 90, if I could make it, 80 would be okay, 67 if my mental game failed me. So, I was feeling okay and went back out for the 12 mile loop. And it rained more. So when I was done, with more hills than I wanted, including Kate Wagner (pictured on the right. It never looks as bad in pictures, but you can't really see the bottom of the hill and you can see a guy walking up the hill), and I was done. And the skies opened up even more so 12 more miles just wasn't worth it. 6 hours, 81 miles. No tears. No being angry at myself about my speed.

And when I got to the post ride food, THEY WERE OUT! All they had was peaches (no peach pie or cobbler, just peaches) and goldfish crackers. I did see a women the size of my thigh with 3 pieces of pizza, however she took the last of it because they were out. I HATE it when races/rides/events run out of food. It feels like a slap in the the face for being slow. But the peaches were pretty good.

I called Karen to let her know she was right and I was fine. I sat in my car and listened to the rain and waited for Jen. When she got back I took off to make sure Sandy was okay. Apparently the sheets of rain didn't hit her so she was fine and also finished the full century.

Overall, I was happy with the ride. I went into it knowing it would be a hard, challenging route. And it was. I would be more comfortable with IM Moo if I was a bit faster. Not a lot, just enough to make me more confident about the bike time cut off. Riding the way I am, it will be close. With a flat, or really bad heat/humidity, or something else - who knows. But I can focus on 1 more build week. And that is what I am planning on doing.


Friday, August 12, 2011


If you read this blog often, you know that calling me moody would be an understatement. Lately, my emotions change as often as a cuckoo clock sounds. I'm in that mental state where I don't think I am doing enough, however I am almost out of time before I start to taper, and I just have to TRUST my coach, and myself - which is just difficult. Every swim, bike, and run just doesn't feel good enough. And that affects my attitude towards pretty much everything else.

But this past week, there have been a few little reminders of how lucky I am.
After an okay 2500 meter swim at Wilson, I heard a very obese woman tell her friend how excited she was that she lost 75 pounds and could now swim 2 lengths of the pool (100 meters) without stopping.
I finished up a ride at Hains Point; which I cut short because I couldn't get moving out of bed and I had to get to work for a meeting, and I was disappointed in myself for not pushing harder after I looked at my very low average HR, knowing I could have done more; and watched a guy get out of van into his wheelchair. He went from his wheelchair to his handcycle, and started his workout.
In the middle of my long, hot, humid run on Monday morning, 4 military gentlemen passed me going the opposite direction, dressed in full fatigues with packs.

I don't know what was going through their minds, their stories, or their reason for doing their activities, but seeing those scenarios this week helped put things back into perspective.

Ironman is just a day. No matter what happens, I have learned a lot more about myself. It would have been nice had I realized this a bit sooner in my training process, but I am lucky I had this moment of enlightenment at all. Most people don't understand what it's like to make your choices for 6+ months for one 17 hour day, when your outcome is uncertain. I may get a rip my tire and not get a new one fast enough, it might be 95 and humid, it might be 55 and rainy - all things pretty much out of my control that would cause me not to finish. But it's just a day.

I am not saying I won't panic a few more times within the next month. I would put a lot of $$ down that I will cry again due to a workout that does not turn out the way I would want. I am sure I will even snip at my friends, Personal Cook, boss, and family because I didn't eat enough.

But I am still lucky I have been able to go on this journey again. I am so lucky that I can swim, I can bike, and I can run. And a part of me is sad that this journey will be over in 30 days. I can only hope my next adventure will lead to more enlightening moments as well. Just maybe with a few less tears.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

One Month

Until I (*hopefully*) get to do this again!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My Undercarriage!

That's what all the cool kids are calling it these days.

Compared to last time, or really the past few years, I actually haven't had many issues in that area during my training. Until this morning. A simple, easy, 2 hour ride this morning turned out to be a bit more painful than it should have been. Especially when I was in aero.
Oh well. They make products to help with the undercarriage, so I just need to restock my supply. I have found Chamois Butt'r is good for short rides. They also have single serving packets that are perfect for a bento box or saddle bag. Just make sure you don't confuse it with a Gu. Yuck!

Assos is my favorite for medium-long rides.

However, for really long rides, I am forever and always a fan of the Bag Balm. As are others...

Undercarriage pain aside, it was a beautiful morning. Not to humid or hot, with a pink/purple/orange sunrise. Not a bad way to start the day. Even if starting the day is at 5:30 am.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I Actually Got Out of Bed

And swam.

After a very long email to Coach about my (triathlon) issues. I told him I didn't expect to be this much of a head case this time around. He responded and said "You are no more a head case than me". And overall that we didn't need a new plan, we just needed to regroup and things will get better. And some other stuff that, of course, made me cry.
One workout at a time. One day at a time.

So this morning, my workout was a swim. So I swam.

Not great, but much better than last week.

Tomorrow morning I bike. Tomorrow night I run.

One workout at a time.

Triathlon Can Be Funny

Thank you to Ray for posting this. Who thanked Adam for posting it.

It's not in Swim/Bike/Run order, but I think that makes it even better.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3 (my favorite)

Energy Supplements

And Wetsuit Removal

Thanks for the laugh Stan!

Monday, August 8, 2011

I Need A Different Attitude

This morning's 'run' did not go as hoped. And I am getting a little tired of my workouts going into the "well, I didn't quit" category. I am out of time for this!!

I wanted to go 2.5 hours and made it 2 hours and 5 minutes. One hour in, I knew 2.5 wasn't going to happen. 1.5 in I just couldn't run any more. I tried to bribe myself, distract myself, do anything I could, but nothing worked. I tried to focus on forum, dropped down to a 1:1 (from a 4:1, that went to a 3:2, that went to a 2:1), but there because a point where my hamstrings said no. And the razor blades inside my stomach didn't help either. I tried to power walk and walk with a purpose, but that failed me as well. I just hobbled back to the office to start my work day.

Realistically, the plan has always been to walk a large part of the marathon. However, I was hoping my long runs would have been a bit more successful than they have been.

I feel like I am out of time, and out if ideas.
Any suggestions?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

5.5 Out of 7 Isn't Too Bad...

As in 5 and a half hours out of 7 that I was supposed to do on the bike today.

But first, let me back track to the past few days.
Thursday I met my Personal Cook in New York City. He was there for work and I was happy to join for a few days. I wish it could have been the entire weekend, but alas, I have that pesky training to do. 5 WEEKS!

Anyway, it was totally worth it as I got to go on the floor of the NYSE!
I also got some training in. I missed my brick (sleep won) but I did manage about an hour 'run'. Running through NYC was kind of like Frogger. Dodge the people, buses, taxis, and bikes. Oh, and try to find my way around. But I managed even if my Garmin couldn't find me - silly skyscrapers. So I wandered around, ran when I could, and found my way to the Brooklyn Bridge. I didn't have a great run - went way to fast when I could run, but I did have a great time.

Saturday was spent walking all around the city. We stumbled upon one of the coolest things, they close down Park Ave for Summer Streets. So we could just walk down the middle of the street! Also, because we were limited on time, we decided not to have meals, but snacks. So we could have bagels with a cream cheese mixing bar, sushi at the Plaza hotel, and a pretzel from a specialty beer bar. Cookies, cannoli, and a mini cheese cake too. We had a great time.

But then today's ride happened. It was a scheduled 7 hour ride. Right away, I knew it was going to be rough. It was already 80 and WAY humid. I kind of had a planned route, but not really because I had 7 hours, and loops don't bother me. Around 2 hours I was out of water and my stomach was massively cramping. On my side trip to the market, I started seeing stars. Not.Good.

So after I wandered around the store in the AC, I called Karen, crying. I was just so frustrated. She offered to pick me up and I just felt like a wimp. Yes my stomach wasn't holding water and I was seeing stars, but I was only 2 and a half hours into my 7 hour ride. She suggested I ride 5 miles, and call (as she was still willing to pick me up). So I rode to the corner. Head towards the car, or to Poolsville.

I chose Poolsville.

5 hours and 40 minutes later. Pain in my foot, a few back twinges, heat rash on my right thigh, and more stomach cramps, I made it back to my car. I also had to stop a few more times to cool down and refuel. I talked to the PC who has a special way of being supportive and making everything black and white. He said do what I need to do to get back, and try again next week. So simple...
Through out the day I tired ginger ale, Starbucks iced coffee, and coke - all to help the stomach and for the caffeine. Accelerade - not so much. Gu - no. Chomps - definitely not. Combos - those were okay. Not a lot to go on, but as Karen reminded me, it was good mentally.

And when I was done, before I put anything in the car or got my flip flops, I just laid down in the grass. Until I heard thunder. It was the first time I couldn't get myself to even walk 20 minutes after a ride. But considering I started crying 2 and a half hours in, I was happy I made it as long as I did. I mean I was so hot I didn't want to be in aero (not just because of my stomach) but because I was closer to the heat coming off of the road. Just.Gross.

So, yeah. The weekend was great. The ride not so much. Tomorrow morning I have a long run which means I need to stop typing and go to bed.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What Happens When You Skip A Workout

I shouldn't say skip, I should say move around.

Anyway, I got up at 5:30 to get in my brick. The weatherman said it would be raining within an hour. So, since I was ridiculously tired, I went back to sleep for 2 more hours figuring I could make up the brick tomorrow morning and do some other workout stuff today, and get into work early.

Good plan.

Which of course went wrong.

I got up at 7:30 and it was dry out. No sign of rain. Oops.

As I was walking out the door, I couldn't find my smart trip card. Not good. It's a huge hassle to report it lost and go through the process of having my transit benefits flipped to a new card. Basically, I am going to have to cover my own commuting costs for the next 2 months (something I have never had to pay for...)

I bought a fare card, only to have it not work and the metro employee lecture me on how to use it. When he tried, his tone shifted and realized I wasn't lying when I said that I just bought the card. I am no longer getting to work early.

I got to work, heated up my breakfast (I am trying to be good and not buy all my meals, and I like the egg muffins!) and as I was walking back into the suite, I dropped my container and egg muffin went everywhere. Including my left pant leg.

All this before 9 am.

I should have bricked this morning.


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Pile It On!

I am in my last, I repeat LAST, major build phase. BAH!

It's a bit scary, but I am feeling okay. Not great, which is no surprise. Most people don't really feel prepared as when they are training, so that is pretty normal.

Sunday was a fun brick. I saw a few people on the bike which was fun and distracting. I then met up with Shannon and Julie for my run. Also, nice and distracting.

Monday I got the day off. I spent yesterday sitting on the metro for over an hour trying to get home. Not the relaxing evening I was hoping for. But, I still managed to get 4 loads of laundry done which is currently all over my living room.

Today was a bike. I went back to Hains Point, where I haven't been in awhile. It was boring, but super good for cadence, which I always need work on.
Tonight was also a swim. Which kind of stunk. Not sure why, the speed was actually right where I should be - not far off from my 'normal' 2000 meter time. But it just felt off and I didn't want to be in the pool. But, I has happy I put in the time.

Tomorrow, another brick.

Yay build phase!