Sunday, January 27, 2008

Wow, this is gonna be HARD!

OK, I am going to admit, this week was really hard.

I did my really hard run on Monday and really hard bike on Tuesday. Then Wednesday was a really long day at work and when I got home I was spent. By the time I had walked Maddie and eaten it was 8:30pm. I went directly to bed and slept for 9 hours. So- rest day #1 since December 7th. Then the next day was a call day (rest day #2). I am really fortunate that I was able to sleep from 2-6am. Sleeping on call is not the best quality sleep in the world. Basically we cruise the hospital to find a free call room. They tend not to be the quietest rooms in the hospital and you sleep with your pager in your hand so that you can be ready at a moment's notice to head back to the ICU. But 4 hours of sleep is still such a blessing. I left call on Friday and went to a meeting and then to the gym for a 60 minute hill repeat running workout, went out to dinner at Lanny and Kathy's, and then went directly to sleep for 10 hours!

Yesterday I had my most difficult long run ever. Using Daniel's formula my running paces are way more challenging. It was 30 minutes at 9:13 miles (a bit slower than it should be, but I put the grade on the t-mill up), then 15 minutes at 8:00, 5 at 9:13, 15 at 8:06, and 15 at 9:13. So it was 9.1 miles in 1:20. I went directly to the pool for 4000 yards, and that was a wonderful long run recovery! The water was super cold. Perfect!

Working in the PICU was really tough. Kids aren't supposed to be that sick. We had a 15 year old with a devastating brain injury from riding in a car without a seatbelt. Her family was just destroyed. It was really difficult to watch her lay there in a coma knowing that if she survived she would be hooked to a vent in a nursing home for the rest of her life. So just as a PSA, take some time to let your loved ones know what you would want if you were ever in that situation. Would you want to have everything done? Would you want to donate your organs? It's really unfair to put the burden of those decisions on someone else. And for God's sake- wear your seatbelt! (rant off...)

I am afraid that the next 6 weeks I'm going to get totally out of shape. After the next 2 weeks of inpatient Pediatrics I go right into a week of 14 hour OB night shift (5pm-7am). I can guarantee that I will not train for at least 4 days that week. I will be so screwed up. And then right when this monster block of school is over I have to go straight to camp. That will be interesting....

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Welcome to Build

Well, my training just took a big 180. No more 2 a days. No more easy runs. No more master's swim during the week. This is partially because of my schedule (currently working in the pediatric ICU), and partially because it's time to move away from base, and towards some workouts that are going to make me faster. For the most part this will be just one key workout per day.

A little birdie landed on my shoulder and gave me the workouts to put in my back pocket from now until camp, in 7 weeks. When I saw the first one, my jaw dropped

30 min Zone 2
20 min Zone 4
10 min Zone 2

So, using my best 5k time (21:50), and Daniel's running formula I got my paces:
Zone 2- 8:58
Zone 3- 8:00
Zone 4- 7:30

I told the little birdie- there is no way I can run on a treadmill for 20 minutes at 7:30 pace!

He said- Yeah you will

Let me tell you. Those were the hardest 20 minutes of run training in my life. By 4 minutes into the interval, my heart rate had hit its plateau of 192 bpm. By 15 minutes I started looking around for a place to vomit. At 18 minutes, I glanced behind me to see what I was going to hit when I went flying off the back of the treadmill. But I made it!

Then today the schedule had me doing 8 x 4 minute zone 4 intervals on the trainer.

Me, to little birdie: I can't do zone 4 on the trainer!

Little birdie: You'll find a way

I can assure you that it was painful, but I somehow managed to keep my HR at 180 for all 32 minutes of the intervals. Thanks in part to my ipod and some really corny dance mix songs...

But on Thursday I get what I haven't had in about 8 weeks. A rest day! Granted, I have to work from 7am Thursday to 1pm Friday, then go to a meeting from 2-3, then do a trainer ride. I call it active recovery!

And some great news! My Mom had her surgery today. It went great, the surgeon was very pleased with the margins of the resection of the cancer, and he sent her home already tonight! Yay Mom!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Stress and training

This week was really stressful for my family. My mom got her very first mammogram at 63 years old and was diagnosed with Ductal Cell Carcinoma of the breast. She also has a mass in her lung, which is likely her sarcoidosis, but still worries me since I just have seen way too much in the last few years. So she is scheduled for a full body CT scan Monday and surgery on Tuesday. It really sucks to not be able to take time off to go there for the surgery, but she's one of the strongest ladies I know. She'll be back to being the world's greatest Grandma to my nephews and niece in no time!

In training news, I bagged a ride this week. I had homework that I had to do, so instead of getting on my bike at 4:45 am, I got on my computer and studied about babies. My week was in the newborn nursery. It was a great experience and I learned a ton. Next week is off to the pediatric ICU. I will be on call once per week, so it will be a forced rest day. That will be a little sad because my running consistency has been great. I have run 45 of the last 51 days and it has really become a wonderful habit for me and the Mad Dog. I have run so much that I ran right through the soles of my shoes! I had bought a pair of Newtons, which arrived the day after I broke my kneecap last spring. Great timing... Anyway, the uber expensive shoes didn't last too long and are completely DONE right now. I don't regret buying them since they have been wonderful for my rehab. Any time I tried to swap in one of my other pairs of shoes my knee would start hurting. But NEVER with the Newtons. I have been running in my trail shoes lately because the road shoes were so worn out. Well today I went over to my friends at Second Sole and picked up a brand new pair of shoes. And they are Adidas! I was looking for a cheaper shoe that would approximate the weight and support of the Newtons. So I ended up with basically a racing flat. I can't wait to try them out tomorrow.

This morning I confirmed my entry into the realm of the insane by getting up at 5:30am on my day off to go for a long trail run with my buddies in some SERIOUSLY cold conditions. The only real problem with running in the severe cold is that the trails turn into ice chutes. Many of us ended up looking like this:

My Triple T teammate and I ended up with about 8.5 miles on the trails and it was great. We're getting together for a trainer ride tomorrow morning. I am really looking forward to the race weekend. I think that my parents are going to make the trip down to cheer us on. It will be like a CdA reunion. Maybe I can get Paulo to join us too!

Time for me to go to bed. I'm exhausted. For the past 5 weeks or so I've been having very vivid dreams and nightmares. I'm a very type B laid back person, so my stress is always manifested in weird ways. Lately it has been in my sleep! I'm hoping for a totally dream-free night!

Sorry my posts have been so boring and un-funny lately. Hopefully I find something entertaining and fun to talk about soon!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Goodbye training block

Hello Pediatrics and OB/GYN

I will be starting my 8 week block of OB/GYN and Peds on Monday. Start time will be likely 6:30am for Peds and 5:30am for OB, with one week of night shift. That means 5 workouts per week will be gone, including all my swims. Hopefully I'll be able to sneak in some weekend swims to maintain some of what I worked so hard for last month. We'll see. I'm definitely looking forward to this block for school, though, so it's a fair trade-off. And right after this is done.... TRAINING CAMP! I can't wait. I miss my camp buddies so much!

Had a nice day today despite being tired from call on Thursday and this morning. I sped right from work to the hairdresser to get my hair hacked and colored again.

I was told I look tired in this pic. Talk about an understatement!

When I was driving back from my appointment the sun was shining. Sometimes in Cleveland winters you cease to realize how cloudy it is every single day. I think it is self preservation. But then you get one sunny day, and it is absolutely glorious. I ran home, grabbed Maddie, and we ran 10k together. It was the kind of day that just makes your whole body and soul smile. Sunny, not too cold, people out everywhere. We ran past 2 lakes in nice paved trails near our house (we ran there). She made it the whole way! I think she was sad she didn't get to wear her new cool vest though...

Then I got home, made a wonderful recovery shake and watched the second quarter of the Packer game (YAY PACK!). Then hopped on the trainer for a tough Paulo special workout. Then I ended up looking even MORE tired! I call this sweaty look- Goth by Jodi

More tomorrow- now I'm going to go pass out for a couple or 14 hours....

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Training Update

I haven't really been talking about my training much lately so I thought I would put up a summary December It was a big block for me with 2 full weeks off of work. Because I never know what my schedule will allow in the future, I need to take full advantage of time off, or rotations that are light.

- I ran 29/31 days in December for a total of about 124 miles and 19 hours, 15 minutes. Average pace 9:17. Paulo told me that frequency was the best thing for my knee and he has surely been right. It hasn't hurt a bit. And I've gotten a whole lot faster. My treadmill base speed has gone up 0.5mph and I'm doing intervals at 8.5mph without any problems. Most of my running is still slow zone 2, though.

- I put in 25 hours on the trainer. NO JUNK MILES. That is my new mantra. I don't slog away in zone 2 anymore. My zone 2 riding is all warm up and recovery between intervals. I've had to put the bike in harder and harder gears to maintain my HR/RPE, so I think it's working.

- I swam 52,200 yards accounting for 18 hours 40 minutes of training for the month. Definitely helped get back my feel for the water.

Total for December: 61 workouts in just under 63 hours (I think there is a cross training session in there. I included one of my shoveling workouts!). Not too shabby!

Now I want to go take a nap! But I have another ride on tap for this afternoon...

Thursday, January 03, 2008

My birthday presents...

Again, only in Wisconsin....

I also got some hot new Rudy project sunglasses! I'm going to be styling this year!


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Epic Swim Report

So why on earth would I do 100 x 100 yard swim intervals on my birthday? Well, other than the fact that I am f------ nuts... (As I am told on a weekly basis by training buddy Lanny)

I've always prided myself on not giving up. If I take on a challenge or task, I will never admit that it's too hard or I'm over my head. I guess you could call me stubborn in that regard. Well I can clearly remember one time when I gave up. It was my senior year in high school. I had been on the varsity diving team for three years and switched to swimming for my last year. I had swam varsity while I dove because of my background, but I hadn't attended a true swim practice since I was 11. So I restarted my swim career with the dreaded double practice. One in the morning, then a break for lunch, and one in the afternoon.

The first morning coach Gus started us out with a main set of 20 x 100, 10 on 2:00, 10 on 1:45. Now this might seem like nothing, but to a girl who hadn't swam at all in almost a year, and not on a swim team since gradeschool, it was more than daunting. When I got to number 8 I just couldn't do it anymore. I made up some excuse about my asthma and left for 10 minutes to regroup. Of all the experiences I have had in my life, this one just refuses to leave my memory. The day I gave up. From that point until yesterday, every single time I looked on the board and saw a set of hundreds I remembered giving up. I guess I just felt it was time to overcome that. I needed a new memory to replace that one.

On to 100 x 100

I woke up in the morning to the smell of hot chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven. Dad made me a dozen for me to bring to the gym. I packed a ton of gatorade, energy drinks, GU, and bars in a cooler, ate a big bowl of cereal, and headed to the gym. I got there very early because I wanted to run first. Wasn't sure how much energy I would have when we were done, so I did a nice slow 3.5 miler on the treadmill. Right when I hit 35 minutes I saw Joel walk up. Uh oh. It's go time.

I don't know why, but all morning I had been nervous to the point of being giddy. And let me tell ya, adding a red bull on top of the nervous energy that I already had was not a great idea. I was shaking when I was putting on my brand new reversible swimming suit (chose electric blue instead of stealth black for this workout).

When we got to the pool all the lanes were taken. Not a problem. We decided to split a lane with an older lady. We had done this before and it was actually quite entertaining. For 1500 yards I had to tightly draft Joel so that when he flip turned he could dive under me as I was coming to the wall. Became a bit tricky in the shallow end, but what the hell- live dangerously! After we finished the warm up set, we decided to do it again. So we had 40 done before we finished the warm up. And I felt like had only done 10. It was starting pretty well.

Jeff showed up at 43 and was up for 50 with us. We didn't follow my plan completely and did a little picking and choosing. I did force them to do the dolphin and upside down dolphin kick set. If looks could kill... let me tell ya. I wouldn't be writing this! (sorry guys) I think I got equally icy looks from the guys when I did #'s 60-65 as 100IM. Most triathletes aren't so fond of strokes. But as a former IMer as a kid, I really like them. Plus, you're not badass if you don't do any butterfly in your 100 x 100 set.

We all had overactive bladders and had several potty breaks (no we don't pee in the pool!). Adding on the 2 GU/cookie breaks, and the break to put all of our food away when the old ladies started complaining that we were breaking pool rules- and we had run a little bit late. The facility was due to close at 2pm. At 12:50 I think we had about 3000 yards left to swim. We did 15 more 100's at a moderate pace. Then I was getting nervous that they would close the pool 10-15 minutes early, so Joel and I looked at each other, put on our fins, and started to swim our hearts out. At the end of each 100, we stopped for a couple seconds, caught our breath, and kicked off again. When we had 3 left, Jeff got out of the water to "guard" us against anyone attempting to kick us out. No way on earth anyone was going to stop us now!

When we finished the last 100, we shared high fives all around. We did it!

Then Jeff took us both out to dinner and beer at Champps. It was a wonderful ending to a morning and afternoon spent tackling the impossible.

I can't take for granted how great these two training buddies have been to me. I had never met them before June, when they both bent over backwards to help me in my taper for IMCdA. And now when I come home they are always around for training and friendly conversation. This sport is really full of the most fabulous people! Here is a pic from back in June (since Jeff didn't pose for any pics with us yesterday!). From left to right- Jeff, Joel, Me, and Will, who is in Boulder now.

Some notes on the swim set:

- It was a lot easier than I had expected. When I was finished my shoulders weren't that sore, but the pic above did make my arm shake something fierce!

- It really helped me get my feel back for the water. By the end, the swimming actually felt effortless. I never felt like my form fell apart.

- 100's will never scare me again. Bring them on!