Friday, January 30, 2009

Five Days of Work...

...One whole day to play, come on every body wear your roller skates today...Saturday it's Saturday, Satuday it's Saturday, Saturday it's Satur-daay--ayyy...! You know I live my life as a soundtrack and this is my song du jour! refer to minute 1:35 of the De La Soul song.

Ok, so it's Friday...but tomorrow's Saturday and I have miraculously molded my calendar to make Saturday my complete rest day. This was an easy feat since this was my "rest focus" week. Every week of my training in the month is dedicated to one of the four (some say there are five... #5 being "transitions"...more to come on those) disciplines of triathlon. Rest is key to improving your have to rest in order for your muscles to repair and build stronger. Janurary's week #4 had rest as the discipline of focus.

So, I get to sleep in tomorrow, lounge around and spend the day checking off all my "to do's" (maybe some people will finally get their birthday gifts purchased! know who you are!). My house may ("may" being the operative word) get cleaned and my laundry folded (living alone affords you the luxury of picking your clothes out of the dryer without having to fold and put them is so proud at the moment!). As my friend Pete would say, I get to bulldog around all day. He often refers to me as a bulldog because they will go-go-go and then crash for a nice long snooze. Since I love to push myself and love my sleep, I always have to laugh and agree. The hilarious part is, the famous bulldog that rides the's name it Tillman...oh the irony! So after a week of go-go-going I am going to crash and have a nice long snooze and day of rest!...a good bulldog day!

"Go Tillman, Go!!!" the little guy has a good nap after all that skatin'

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Hey Baby, Lookin' for a Ride?

After the gorge session on Saturday morning at Fido, my friend Kevin and I went shopping for bikes.  "A new bike?" ask.  "I thought you had a bike, a fairly new one in fact" exclaim.  Ah, yes, I do have a bike, my Orbea (or Orby as I call her)...alas Orby is a road bike and I am now in the market for a tri bike.  The geometry of a tri bike keeps you in a more aerodynamic position and keeps your legs in a position that utilizes the quads more than the hamstrings, thus helping to keep your legs fresh for the run.  The word "fresh" is to be taken can your legs feel the least bit fresh after a 112 mile bike and ready to rock a marathon?  I guess we'll have to wait and see.  

Kevin and I went to the local tri store, ACME Multisport, and tried (no pun intended) a few bikes out...we were both tired from our morning workouts and felt completely lame when we got tired testing out the bikes on the trainer for a total of five minutes!  The bike pictured below is a nice little Cervelo that I really liked.  I have a few more stores I am going to check out before making any decisions...but I have a feeling Velly (that will be her name) will soon be finding a spot in my living room where a couch should be.  Of course the bikes I tried that felt right were the 2009 models that were not on sale...naturally.  

This is Bill lowering my seat to accommodate my short, not so long 'n lean, legs!  I was too afraid to take the bike for a spin outside...for fear I would fall over since my legs were so tired.  "You break, you buy!"

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it's off to Fido we go!

The reason I love my Saturday morning workouts is not so much because of the workout but for the brunch that follows after!  My friends and I will convene at one of our favorite restaurants, Fido, after a long run, ride, swim or sleeping in.  We sometimes all do different activities but we synchronize our swatches and meet to enjoy some good food and great laughs!  

Today, after a 2.5 hours indoor bike class with Todd I was starving, so I went with my go-to big girls breakfast...the steak scramble.  Delish, huh?  It's a great little mixture for the athlete in all of us.  Egg whites for great protein without the fat and cholesterol.  Steak for iron to get your red blood cells pumping and carrying your much needed oxygen.  Spinach (see Popeye the Sailor Man!) for iron and muscle repair.  Potatoes to replenish your carbohydrates stores.  Salt it all up since you sweat HARD for 2.5 hours.  Lastly, bread...cause it's good for the soul!  Top it all off with a latte so you can stay awake for the rest of the day and voila...PERFECTION on a plate!

Okay, so it may be a little over indulgent but I don't have to eat until dinner after eating this.  Dinner typically comes at 6:00 when we all meet up again for a few adult beverages at our other go-to, 12 South Tap's to Saturday!

Hello lover!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Enjoy Feb...March gets Ugly!!!!

That's right, "ugly" with four exclamation points!  This is how Richard/Triswami/Coach, signed off on his email to me last night.  I received my February training plan yesterday and that's how he ended his email.  Ugly, hmmm...what does that mean?  Unattractive, not pretty, appalling, uninviting?  I am picturing the calendar with February having little rainbows and unicorns flying fun, weee!  Then, flip the page and devils and fire and Triswami laughing maniacally.

I also had my first night of having to "just say no" to my friends and the allure of Friday happy hour.  I resisted the urge and ran the 6 miles that was on my training calendar...all after staying at work until 5:30 on a Friday...put that on my review!! 

So, I had a happy hour of my own...a beer and some blogging...oh no, I'm a HUGE LOSER! ;)


Sunday, January 18, 2009

My Stomach Just Dropped!

I was checking out the CDA IM's website and decided to look at the photos from last years race...gulp!  These are the pictures from the start of the race, look at all those people...I am surely going to be kicked in the head (now I'll never be a teen model!).  My stomach literally dropped when I saw these.  Now, I have done some open water swims before, but NOTHING like this.  Didn't help that on a hike with my friend today he mentioned that he thought someone died in the swim last year...awesome.  

And they're off!  
The swim course is actually two loops, so you swim 1.2 miles and get out on the shore run over the timing mat and then swim 1.2 again.  I think that will be a nice advantage so you can rest a bit, take a Gu and some water and go again...much better than 2.4 completely non-stop.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Woe is Wednesday

I know no one in this picture, but this is a shot of what Wednesday morning looks like!

Wednesdays always prove to be somewhat of a challenging day. I have Todd's indoor computrainer bike class in the morning from 5:30-7:00 (yet another pre 5:00am wake up call, ugh!) and then swim practice that night from 6:15-8:00, double ugh. Come Thursday I am pooped, tired, wiped, done, sleepy, finished...but still have to get up for a run or some other type of exercise, triple ugh! (whatever, you know I love it!)

Todd's class, although extremely early, is extremely fun. Below is a picture of the screen that he projects up on the wall. You are assigned a position (1-8) and a corresponding color. Your little biker guy is shown moving across the course (the course is the brown/blue on top, showing the hills) and you can see what position you are in compared to the other riders in the class. Todd has specific things we focus on during our 6 week training sessions, like strength, aerobic capacity, cadence, etc. but no matter how hard you try to focus on your personal level you always want to try and race everyone else in the you are completely drained come 7am!

There are a lot of other nuggets of information on the screen that you can focus on as well (which makes the time go by a lot faster)...such as MPH, distance traveled, heart rate, watts generated, cadence (pedal speed), etc. You have certain zones based on your "test" you do at the begining of the session (test = ride as hard/fast as you can for 7.25 miles = death). So you are constantly trying to keep your cadence at a specific number, while maintaining a certain level of power output (watts) and still trying to kick your neighbors butt...b/c you don't want to be the last little square biker guy to finish! Fun stuff!!...are you confused?, welcome to my world!

Todd will be on my speed dial for the next 6 months to keep me challenged and motivated to ride my bike (my weakest and least desireable of the three sports). Why does the longest (yes, 112 miles) of the three have to be my least favorite?, oh why?

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Little Humor to Lighten Your Training Day

I had a friend send me this list of "You Know You're Obsessed with Triathlons When..." and I had forgotten about it until I recently saw it on another blog.  I read it, had a good chuckle, and then took around and assessed my own situation....yikes!  According to this list, I may be on the road to obsession!  Look at the pics and note numbers 44 and 15...hmmm.  

Also threw in a pic of my training partner (posing by the permanent bike fixture in my living room) who forces me to get out there and run on the days my motivation is low...he also dutifully watches as I log hours on the bike.  I often get scared he's going to stick his nose in the back wheel while he's sniffing around and checking to make sure all my connections are tight!

50. You are over 30 and there is still someone in your life that you refer
to as "coach".
49. Your last bike cost more than your first car.
48. You have peed outdoors more times in the last year than you did in your
first year of university.
47. You think of mowing the lawn as a form of cross-training.
46. You've worn a heart-rate monitor to bed.
45. And it wasn't when you were sleeping.
44. You refer to the front hall of your house as the "transition area".
43. When you get home from a training session at the pool, the newspaper is
just being delivered to your house.
42. You have changed more flat tires this year than light bulbs.
41. The most frequently used software program on your computer is the one
that keeps track of your workouts.
40. You have no idea why they call Cal Ripken Jr. "Iron Man" when, after
all, he was a baseball player.
39. The first three items on your grocery list are Gatorade, power bars, and
38. When you floss at night, it's to get the bugs out of your teeth.
37. Your legs move in a cycling motion while you are asleep.
36. When you see a drop of blood, your first reaction is that you spilled
some red Gatorade.
35. You know how far you biked and ran last year, to one-tenth of a
34. You think the ultimate form of wallpaper is about 64 racing bibs.
33. A 19-year old kid who works in a bicycle shop know more about you than
your next-door neighbor.
32. Your children are more likely to recognize you if you put your bicycle
31. You have a vanity license plate with the work "Kona" in it.
30. About half the shirts you own have at least a dozen logos on the back of
29. You don't find the word "Fartlek" in the least bit amusing.
28. When you refer to your "partner", you mean neither your spouse nor the
co-owner of your business but the person you run or bike with three times a
27. You shave your legs more often than your wife.
26. The closest you came to punching somebody was when they disagreed with
your position on whether wearing a wetsuit amounts to cheating.
25. It doesn't feel right that you can't "clip " in and out of the pedals in
your car.
24. There is a group of people in your life about whom you are more likely
to know how fast they can swim 100 meters than their surnames or
23. Some of the shorts you wear today are tighter than the ones you wore in
high school.
22. You are frustrated with the latest Garmin Forerunner because its live
readings have a margin of error of approximately three per cent.
21. There's a separate load of laundry every week that is just your workout
20. One of your goals this year is to be faster at getting out of your
19. You failed high school chemistry but you could teach a course on lactic
18. All you want for Christmas is something called a carbon crank set.
17. You wore a digital watch to your wedding.
16. You have to have completely separate meals from your spouse because he
or she is on a low-carb diet.
15. Your bicycle is in your living room.
14. You have stocked up on a brand of cereal because it has a coupon that
will save you money on your next two pairs of running shoes.
13. In order to establish a new personal best, you considered peeing without
getting off your bike.
12. One of your proudest moments is when you lost a toenail.
11. When a car follows too closely behind you, you accuse the driver of
10. When you went for a job interview, you wrote your social insurance
number on your arm in black marker.
9. Your spouse cried during Terms of Endearment; you cried during the
television coverage of the Hawaii Ironman.
8. You are comfortable discussing the sensitivity of your nipples with other
7. Your spouse is looking forward to the day when you will slow down and
just run marathons.
6. You have paused in front of the mirror in your wetsuit and thought, "Hey,
I look like Spiderman.
5. You see no issue with talking about treatments for chafing or saddle rash
at the dinner table.
4. You recently asked your spouse out for dinner by asking if he or she
wanted to "fuel up" together.
3. For you, "bonking" no longer has a sexual connotation.
2. The magazine secretly tucked under your mattress has pictures of really
expensive bicycles in it.
And the No 1 sign you're obsessed:
1. Most of this list doesn't seem like a joke to you.


Need a Little Motivation?

Check out this little YouTube clip of the Kona Ironman. 

 I have watched this 1:12 video at least 20 times now.  If you have never watched the TV coverage of the Kona Ironman you have been missing out.  Regardless of your level of fitness you will be mesmerized by the event.  This is the best of the best in the world of endurance sports.  When I first watched the coverage my roommate at the time walked in and saw me sitting on the couch bawling my eyes out.  What the f@#*?...she exclaimed to me.  She didn't quite understand why I would cry watching people swim, bike and run.  She quickly learned about my obsession with exercise and healthy living (I took a small hiatus when I first moved to Nashville and moved in with her so she didn't quite know what she was in for) and quickly caught on to understanding my obsession, the lingo and became a huge cheerleader, making sure to always wish me luck, ask about my races, etc.  A few years later she again saw me on the couch watching the coverage of Kona, this time she was ready to sit down and watch.  At the end of the hour we both looked at each other with tears in our eyes, in awe of the athletes and the coverage of the special interest athletes, whom against all forces against them, complete an Ironman.  She knew then that I had the Ironman in my sight and it was only a matter of time before I decided to take the plunge!

I know I will watch this clip 20 more times, if not 1,000.  When I am having a bad day, waking up and walking into swim practice like a zombie, or when I fear I will fall off my bike with exhaustion, I will come back to videos like this and recharge my motivation to complete my goal of becoming an Iron(wo)man.  If this doesn't motivate you to get off the couch and at least walk the dog around the block, then I don't know what will!  You don't have to "go big," you just have to go!

Sunday Sunday Swim Day!

Sunday used to be a day of relaxation, no showers, leisurely brunches and maybe some afternoon beverages....that is no longer the case.  Now Sunday is Swim day with Excel!  We had our first practice of the new year last week and everyone had to come to re-register with the group.  There were over 80 people at practice with only 4 lanes assigned to Excel swimmers...needless to say, it was chaos!  It's hard to stop and catch your breath, wipe the snot out of your nose or try not to choke on the water when there is a line of 10 people behind you!  No Pressure!

Today marks the end of the first official week of training.  So far there hasn't been anything too different or challenging compared to normal.  The next two months will be building my base training with a big focus on strength training, swimming and biking.  Oh yeah, and I have to run too...basically, focus on everything with the exception of sleeping.  4:30 wake up calls will become the norm, so if you are reading this be sure not to call me after 9:00pm! ;)