Friday, December 28, 2007

100 x 100

My 2 weeks off has been wonderful so far. I got some of the best gifts ever! I am so set for winter running, got a set of speakers for my ipod, some great work clothes, and the cutest new cycling jersey from my biker buddies Lanny and Kathy:

Training has been great. I've been able to structure my vacation around my workouts and I feel like it has done wonders for my fitness. Now the Christmas cookies.... not so much.

My birthday is coming up on Monday and to celebrate I'm doing something that I've wanted to do for a long time. The dreaded 100 x 100 swim set! (yes, I am one sick individual). I'm thinking of breaking it down like this:

Warm up- 2000 yards
10 x 100 free
5 x 100 pull
5 x 100 kick with fins

5 x 100 25 free 50 stroke 25 free
5 x 100 25 right arm/25 left arm/ 25 catch up/ 25 free
5 x 100 Fast/EZ by 25 (free)
5 x 100 kick (25 butterfly/ 25 upside down butterfly)*2 with fins
5 x 100 Free- Fast with flippers
5 x 100 IM (with or without flippers, with or without fly)

5-10 minute break for refueling

5 x 100 25 underwater-no breaths, 25 swim- breathe freely, 25 3 breaths, 25 breathe freely
5 x 100 stroke
5 x 100 build (start very slowly, build to 80-90%)
5 x 100 pull easy- focus on form
5 x 100 kick with fins
5 x 100 swim fast with fins
5 x 100 25 free/25 stroke x 2

Last 15 x 100 will be made up by all those that attend (might be a good sized group!). I'm thinking maybe some corkscrew races, follow the leader, team swimming. Anything to keep it fun and doable.

Wish me luck!

And here is a pic of New Year's in Wisconsin. A sight that would have terrified me before I got my brand new GoodYear Triple Tred Tires yesterday!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

I hope Santa was nice to all of you!


Saturday, December 22, 2007

You know you're in Wisconsin when...

-You press scan on your receiver and the first station that comes in is playing polka

-You think everyone is dressed for the holiday season, but they are really just wearing Packer and Badger gear

-There is a new food group on the pyramid and its name is "fried"

-The biggest outrage of the year is the NFL network stealing football games that people without Dish can't access

-People are so nice you wonder if they have mistaken you for someone important

Yes, I'm at home, sweet home. The drive here was smooth and well aided by the wonder of Red Bull. In my caffeine Naive body, one can of red bull lasts me about 10 hours of complete and total wakefulness. I'm crashing pretty hard now, though.

I should probably do some shopping tomorrow, but since the Packers play, that will probably not happen... Thanks to I have most of my presents here already.

My training load is really high right now. For some reason, I found it necessary to sign up for 4 different training challenges. So between logging all of my miles every day and actually doing the training, my day is pretty booked up. Tomorrow I have the trainer workout from hell again with a 30+ minute run. Should be fun in the blizzard that should be hitting any time now. I am already getting a tad bit tired of the dreadmill.

Ok, I'm spent and getting a bit curious about what on earth my mom is watching on her computer across the room. I keep hearing really loud fart noises and my mom giggling away. I'll leave you with some pics of the dogs. Christmas came early for them this year..

Maddie got a sweater from Matt. It has a big pic of Sponge Bob on the back. She is horrified by it, and that just makes that much more funny...

I didn't want Murphy to feel left out so here he is in his hew antlers...

And another present for Maddie. As you can see, she is delighted...

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Teamwork... and the mystery race

This morning I got on the bike trainer with the intention of doing a 1:15 ride. I put in tape #2 of the 2002 TdF and started my ride. The third stage of the tape was the first mountain stage. I was absolutely mesmerized by what I saw. And ended up riding an extra 10 minutes...

I have listened to a lot of TdF commentary on the internet and read a lot of news stories, but since I don't have the cable network that televises the TdF, I have never really SEEN it. What I saw this morning was the most pure example of teamwork and selflessness I have ever seen in competition. The USPS team was just absolutely amazing. With all the other teams spread out across the peleton, all 9 members of USPS are up front pulling Lance through the stage. The weaker cyclists took the early pulls and just gave that race all they had and then fell, exhausted to the back. One by one, each team member took their turns pulling their leader through the course until there was just one left. The last man standing was a really strong mountain climber. He pulled Lance right up to the end, where there was <400 meters left. Then Lance, with unmatchable power, just left everyone in his dust and won the stage, taking the yellow jersey. It was really something to see!

What on earth does this have to do with the mystery race? Well I am not doing this race solo, that's what. I have entered the DeSoto American Triple T with one of the guys that gave up 6 weekends last spring to get me through century rides. Who swam with me for 10 months leading up to the race. Who hopped off his bike and ran me through some brutal bricks in May. It's time for Tony and I to race together as we work towards his goal of a PB at IMLP in 2008. I'm not sure if I can can be quite what the USPS team was to Lance, but I'll give it all I've got. Here we are together before I left for CdA last year (he's the tall one)

The DeSoto Triple T is one of the most Unique weekends in our sport. You can do it solo, or in 2 person teams. It is a 4 event, 3 day race:

The super sprint on Friday night is an individual race.

The First Olympic distance race on Saturday is an individual time trial.

The Second OD race on Saturday is a team time trial. You start the race on the bike and it is draft legal within the team. Then you hop off for the swim, then out of the water running. The time of the slowest member is the time for your team.

Sunday is a Half Iron distance race. Teammates MUST finish TOGETHER! (again, draft legal with your teammate)

Here is some more info. Did I mention that the courses are friggin insanely difficult?

Race 1: Prologue

Friday, May 23, 5:00 PM
250m Swim - 5 mi Bike - 1 mi Run

RACE RULES: All individual times count towards the team time. Any individual (solo and team) finishing in the top five overall will receive team bonus time. Drafting is not allowed.

SWIM: The 250 meter swim is a counter clockwise loop course in Turkey Creek with participants starting in a time trial start every 5-seconds. Swim start is a dry land running start. Wetsuits allowed.

BIKE: The 5 mile bike course is a challenging loop course to the top of the resort and back. Bring your climbing gears.

RUN: The 1 mile run course is an out and back course on park roads within the park.

Race 2: Individual Time Trial

Saturday, May 24, 7:30 AM
1500m Swim - 24.8 mi Bike - 6.55 mi Run

RACE RULES: All individual times count towards the team time. Any individual (solo and team) finishing in the top five overall will receive team bonus time. Drafting is not allowed.

SWIM: The 1500 meter swim is a counter clockwise loop course in Turkey Creek with participants starting in a time trial start every 5-seconds. Swim start is a dry land running start. Wetsuits allowed.

BIKE: The 24.8 mile bike course is a challenging loop course on park fire roads within the park and state routes outside the park. Bring your climbing gears.

RUN: The 6.55 mile run course is an out and back course on park fire roads within the park. This is a tough course.

Race 3: Team Triathlon

Saturday, May 24, 3:00pm Start
24.8 mi Bike - 1500mi Swim - 6.55 mi Run

RACE RULES: Your last teammate across the finish line counts towards the team time. This unique triathlon format starts on the bike in a time trial start with teams starting every 30 seconds followed by solos. Up next is a 1500 meter swim, followed by a 6.55 mile run. Drafting is allowed only within teams. No drafting is allowed otherwise.

BIKE: The 24.8 mile bike course is a challenging loop course on state routes surrounding the park. Bring your climbing gears.

SWIM: The 1500 meter swim is a counter clockwise loop course in Turkey Creek with participants starting after the completion of the bike. Swim start is a dry land running start. Wetsuits allowed.

RUN: The 6.55 mile run course is an and back course on park fire roads within the park. This is a tough course. Same as morning run course.

Bike Course Profile

Race 4: Team Time Trial

Sunday, May 25, 7:00am Start
1.2 mi Swim - 55.5 mi Bike - 13.1 mi Run

RACE RULES: All teams must start and finish together. The top five teams will start in order of current place in the overall standing with the wave interval being the time differential between the teams. All other teams will start every 15 seconds there after.

SWIM: The 1.2 mile swim is a counter clockwise loop course in Turkey Creek with participants coming out of the water briefly after lap one. Swim start is a dry land running start. Wetsuits allowed.

BIKE: The 55.5 mile bike course is a VERY challenging loop course on state routes outside the park. Bring your climbing gears.

RUN: The 13.1 mile run course is a double out and back course on park fire roads within the park. This is a tough course.
1 Lap of the Bike Course Profile

General Race Rules

These rules apply for the duration of the event.

1) All participants will be issued a customized logoed and numbered Desoto American Triple-T racing singlet. Participants MUST wear their DeSoto American Triple-T singlet on the outer most layer at all times.

2) Altering of the racing singlet in anyway is not allowed.

3) All participants are required to where black tri/bike shorts or black speedo. Sponsor logos and team names are allowed on shorts or speedo. If you don't have anything black go to and order the Tri Short. This is a great fitting padded tri short, which is perfect for swimming, biking, and running.

4) Sportsmanship will be imperative during this long hard weekend. You'll be racing side-by-side folks in formats that many participants may have not raced in. Be careful and be a good sport. Unsportsmanlike conduct towards other participants, volunteers, race officials, or local authorities will not be tolerated and will result in a DQ, loss of all race entry funds, and prize eligibilty.


Game on

Oh, and in case you're wondering... We are racing under team name: Undermedicated

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Hardest Trainer Workout EVER

I've been trying to do at least one long (>1:30) trainer ride every weekend, but coming up with workouts to keep my interest has been tough. So lately I've been begging Paulo to give me workouts. I think he's officially tired of my asking, so he gave me the most evil workout I've ever done. But since I'm such a glutton for punishment, I loved it.

2 hours, with 5 x 10 minute big ring on front / 12 on the back (biggest gear).

Sounds easy, until you try to survive the first 10 minutes. You are quickly engulfed in sweat. To get through the pain, I put on volume 1 of the 2002 Tour. It covered stages 1-9 and it was pretty awesome. I'm looking forward to some mountain stages for next week's ride!

So.... I know that I said that I was going to get serious about cutting down to race weight. It hasn't gone too well. I've lost about 3 pounds, getting down to 124, but there is still work to do. But I've been given a bit of a kick start by Stacy at Ohio Sports and Fitness magazine. She has asked me to be one of the athletes on the cover of her winter sports issue. The shoot is this Wednesday! Now I'm really wishing I would have gotten serious about my weight back in October. But better late than never! I went to the store today before the blizzard hit and got lots of veggies for my week. It's go time.

Friday, December 14, 2007

What have I done???

-OK, not quite sure what kind of drugs I was taking tonight, but I just registered for 2 races for 2008 that make my hands shake. One is Steelhead and it scares the crap out of me because it is my "A" race for the year. The other one will remain unnamed for now, but I think it officially qualifies me for admission to the psych ward where I will be working next week. Lets just say, when I'm done with it I think that I'll look back on CdA as the easy days. More later when I move on in my stages of coping. I'm enjoying denial at the moment. But anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance are soon to come...

-My life has been very busy lately. I've been trying to fit in training at every possible juncture. Because of that, my 2 weeks off will have to be packed full of the studying I have been avoiding. Well, that and more training! I'll be home with my training buddy, Dad, so it should be fun!

-The Holidays... Working on a Psychiatry service during the holiday season really gives an entirely different perspective to the season. Christmas was always such a happy and long anticipated holiday with my family. Dad has played Santa on Christmas Eve for little kids all over since before I was born. He puts up a Christmas light display that puts Clark Griswald to shame. He actually upgraded his electrical service in the house so that he could get more power! And mom, Mrs. Claus as I like to call her, decorates the inside of the house like the north pole. Santas and snowmans everywhere. 2 Christmas trees, red bows all throughout the house, and the constant smell of cinnamon and pine. We eat my favorite junk food all night, which always includes Ruffles and French Onion Dip (the only day in the whole year that I eat chips). I drive Santa to the kids houses, and we open presents by the tree. With the addition of the nephews and niece, it's just so much more special now!

But this week alone I cared for 2 people who attempted suicide. The holidays are a brutal reminder for many people of a life lost. The death of loved ones, the loss of family and spouses because of drug and alcohol abuse, financial hardship. It really makes me appreciate my wonderful and loving family so much more. Can't wait to go home!

-OK, on a silly note, here are some pictures from last weekend when Paulo was in town visiting. We were playing around with my Mac's built-in camera. Fun!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

I went to the Orchestra and saw...

The conductor was amazing!

And the pieces were fabulous!

Seriously, watching Looney Tunes and listening to the world famous Cleveland Orchestra play the score was just so amazingly fun. I felt like a kid again. And it helped that Severance hall was full of them! Makes me look forward to spending some quality time with my nephew. Then we headed over to Lolita, one of Iron Chef Symon's Cleveland restaurants. It was superb!

In training news...

-For some great swimming articles head over to Paulo's blog this week

- I've been trying to be more consistent with my running lately. Joined a running challenge on ST, so I have to do at least 100 runs in 130 days. I'm not looking forward to going out in the weather today, though. Yuck!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

My Hero!

My first exposure to triathlon was when I was a little girl. My dad did a sprint triathlon and I was just so proud and amazed by his achievement. To this day I wonder if I would have ever gotten into the sport if it wasn't for him.

Then when I began training and competing he was my number one fan (and mom, of course). When I would go home he would ride and run with me. I bought him a trainer last Christmas and we would spin and watch movies. He never lets me go to a race without a support crew.

He went to California for my first 70.3

And of course, he and mom made the trip out to CdA. He even warmed up my wetsuit in the morning!

Last year we were going to do the Vegas Half marathon together... until he broke his ankle into many pieces and needed surgery. He still went out there and we did the Santa Claus 5k the day before the race.

Well, not to be beaten by an injury, my dad trained through the summer to do his first half marathon down in Vegas this year. At 61 years old, he did a half marathon in 2:05:25 taking 27/105 in his age group. Just a tad over 9:30 miles. What an amazing race!

Dad, I'm so proud of you!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Now I kinda feel like a runner...

Reindeer Run 5k Race Report

I caught the running bug as soon as my knee started feeling better last month. I had to force myself to take rest days this week. I've just been enjoying it so much. So after the PR (23:31) at the Pigskin Classic, I signed up for another race. This is the last of about 60 local races run by Hermes. I was told that it was completely flat and a great course for a PR. I got excited to break through the 23 minutes barrier and was thinking about it all week. I was able to talk Colleen and my friend Vikas into coming down with me. It was Vikas' first 5k since high school, so it was tons of fun heading down. He also called in a prescription for an albuterol inhaler for me. Mine was expired and I felt like I really needed it at the last race. My lungs had never hurt that bad in my life.

We showed up a little late, so by the time we had our race numbers, chips, and had our stuff tucked away in the car it was 5 minutes to race time. Oops! I guess no warm up today! I took a puff of the inhaler, ran in place a bit and jogged to the starting line. I decided to start farther back today. I started right up front last time and it was so defeating to be passed the whole time!

Soon after we hit the starting area the race began. I realized the bad part of starting to the back right away! It was really tough to get going. Very congested. But then we turned a corner onto the road and I was able to run on the outside. It was actually pretty fun to pass people for a change.

The first mile seemed like it was taking forever. I was worried that with the congested start it would be a really slow mile 1. When I saw the marker and looked down I was very pleasantly surprised.

Mile 1 7:05

I was feeling much better than at this point in the last race so I tried to just hold steady. I kept passing people and soon saw the leading man coming back. He was smoking fast! As I came across the turnaround I saw my friends Liz and Janet cruising the other way. They looked amazing. I can't wait until the day I can even keep up to those chicas in training!

After the turnaround I felt like I was fading a little but kept telling myself to suck it up- it's a short race- I can withstand pain for 3 miles. When I got to mile 2, I was also really surprised

Mile 2 7:07

I was too tired to calculate how fast I had to go to break 23 minutes so I just tried my best to hold steady. One thing that was really obvious about my running was that I could actually breathe! So I guess I have to just pony up to the fact that I have asthma. Denial is painful!

The last mile was really tough, but about 1/2 mile from the end I could see the 3 mile marker. I didn't look at the my watch when I hit mile 3, I just tried to run my fastest that last 0.1. As I looked down at my watch as I crossed the finish line I couldn't believe my eyes


I didn't just break 23, I broke 22! Woooohoooooo!

I never thought that I would place in my age group in a 5k. I never felt like I was a runner. But for some reason, this race changed that. I got third in my age group and now all I can think about is my next run. Bring it on!

A HUGE kudos to a couple of my favorite tri-chicks Elizabeth and Janet. Both had incredible PRs and won their age groups. Some day I'll feel fast enough to run with you guys on your easy days