Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Nice Stroke

Tuesday - Run Speedwork Day - One mile super easy, increase treadmill speed by 2 clicks every half mile, one mile super easy.  4 miles total.

Got up and did my run this morning, though, I would have rather not. :)  I got back from the pool about 8:15 last night and it felt like I hadn't really slept yet.  I slept pretty well for once, but bed at 10 -- hubby's alarm at 4 -- mine at 5 -- you know how it goes!

Last night's swim was largely drill and technique work.  I take my 12yo daughter and she kicks like crazy with the kick board and makes me try to keep up!  A family was swimming in the lane next to us, so of course I started talking to the Mom.  She had a beautiful stroke and I figured she was a life long swimmer.  She offered to look at me swim and offered some valuable advice on drills and dry land exercises to help improve my stroke.

She also said I had a "pretty nice stroke".  Boy oh boy did that bolster my self confidence!

Photo from Clifbar.com
This morning, I tried one of the new products I got in my ProBox from The Feed.  Yesterday, I wrote briefly about my home made recovery drink.  Today, I tried one from the makers of Clif Bars.   This reminded me a lot of the Beach Body Recovery Drink.  It's Orange Mango flavor was just right on the sweetness spectrum.

The packet itself had about 170 calories, so I mixed it with water.  It had a little more carbs than I get in my formula, but less protein.  At $2.99/serving, it is most definitely out of budget for a daily supplement, but the individual packet might be nice on the go.

Well, I've got a Kindergartener home, sick, from school today.  Along with my daycare kids, I have to be on top of my game today.

Thankfully, this evening, we don't have anything to do and I don't have a workout scheduled.  I need to clean Cameron's room...ugh...and I told Alahnnah I would help her with some Christmas gifts.  Never a dull moment, that's for sure!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Don't Smash Your Face

Monday - Upper Body Strength Training & Swim Technique Work

I hadn't done P90X Shoulders & Arms for a while.  I love Tony Horton, I think he's really funny and his no-nonsense approach really gets me motivated.  His tip of the day was "breathe" but later in the workout, he joked that it was "don't smash your face."  I made the mistake last week with Legs & Back, thinking that I wasn't working especially hard and paying for it the next day.  And the next day.

After working out with Tony and the fabulous Dreya Weber I made sure to add some BCAA's to my recovery drink.  I have read the ingredients on a lot of recovery formulas and I'm confident that my home spun version is just as good and more easily adjusted to the intensity/duration of the workout I just finished.

Andrea's Recovery Drink
1c. 1% milk (1.5c for men)
1/2 scoop protein powder (1 full scoop for men)
10g of BCAA powder (15g for men)

Shake up and drink as fast as you can...because BCAA powder is incredibly bitter no matter what flavor they tell you it is.  You don't need the BCAA's every day - just after especially long or intense training sessions.

Haven't heard of Branched Chain Amino Acids?  They will totally change the way you recover from hard workouts.  This little supplement reduces the chemicals that are released when your muscles are damaged.  Ever heard of the DOMS?  Delayed onset muscle soreness?  That's the "holy crap I can't sit on the toilet" feeling you get after leg day.  BCAA's help reduce that tremendously by managing the damage you just did.  Damage is good -- actually -- because that's how you build mass and strength, but too much - too sore -  can't work out the next day - not so good.

So, hopefully I will be able to lift my arms to do some swimming later today.  I take my 12 year old daughter with me to help with technique work.  She kicks like crazy with the kick board, so it motivates me to keep up.  I have a pretty weak-sauce kick.

In between that time, just a bunch of laundry and trying to clean a 5 year old's room with a 22 month old's help.  Yep.  Should be a piece of cake.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Fall Time

I haven't written a thing since summer.

I've been going through a "thing" that I haven't been quite willing to share.  I'm getting there.

Oh, wait...more writing after I brush a little girls hair.

No wonder I never write anymore...

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Late June

What a great week!

On Monday, we went to spend some birthday money. Cameron and Susan's birthdays are only six weeks apart, so they both had cash burning a hole in their pockets!  We went to Shopko and spent about an hour looking and looking at clothes, toys and accessories.  Cameron wound up with a game and Susan opted for a PlayDough set that makes ice cream cones!  Neither one spent their whole $15, so we decided to save some for later.

I spent a lot of time training with my kids this past week.  On Wednesday, Alahnnah and I went for a bike ride -- we were shooting for five miles, but she got very hot and light headed so we turned back and got about four miles in.  It was about 90 degrees and terribly windy.  Poor kid.  I dropped her at home to cool off and headed out for an hour on my own.

On Thursday, I did Liam's run workout with him.  He warms up for about 5 minutes and runs sprints back and forth through the park -- sprint one way and turn around and walk the other.  We chatted and had a good workout.  It was pretty warm out yet and 6pm, but we are getting used to training in the heat.

Friday, the kids and I all went to the mall.  We took our little buddy, Luke, with us and spent about 4 hours or so shopping, eating, playing and walking around.  I didn't even buy very much, but we had a nice time.  It was nice to have all of the kids along.  Friday night we swam laps at the Y, and Alahnnah did her swim workout.  After doing what I was telling her to do -- she asked if I wanted to do her workout.  Sure!  We did flips and cartwheels up and down the lap lane twice. :)  I did have to swim my mile, but it was fun to have some FUN beforehand.

Friday evening, we all sat on the front porch and Liam played guitar and the little kids caught fire flies.  We ate a bag of carrots and waited for the storm that never arrived.  Party animals, for sure!

Saturday I slept in waaaaay to late and tried a long run at 11:00am.  Rookie mistake.  Dehydrated from sleeping all night and coffee in the morning.  Running a new route in full sun, no wind and 85 degrees.  Nope.  I had a 7 mile route planned, but cut it short and wound up with five.  Oh well.  That evening we all went to the lake for a bit and Alahnnah got some open water swim practice in.  She will be doing a triathlon with an OWS the end of July.  I don't want her to have a panic attack!

Today has been fun, too!  I spent the morning in the church nursery and went to see my Grandpa in the nursing home after lunch.  For supper, we had Make Your Own Pizza - which is so much fun!  The kids loved it and its certainly something with will try again.  I baked mine up last and headed out for a run while it cooled.  I got a lovely 5 miles in and felt like I could have run forever.  Maybe that's what heaven is like...

Time to get ready for another week!  Not too much planned, but likely will be adding things as they pop up.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Week That Followed

The week following our 70.3 triathlon was quite busy!  We participated with our church's Vacation Bible School program which ran from 6 to 8pm each night Sunday through Friday.  I didn't think we'd survive Sunday evening.  Thankfully, my legs were only sore in my hips -- poor David's feet where really really bothering him.

I was greatly surprised with the recovery after a half ironman.  I am a planner, and making a training plan to stick to is a tri-geek, joy for me.  My planning and training must have been adequate.  I felt tired this past week, but after Sunday's sore hips, I never did feel soreness in my legs or back.  I'm proud of my fitness!  I took the entire week off of any exercise at all and just let my body heal.  Dave has been riding his bike to/from work...glad I work from home!

Yesterday morning was beautiful -- I slept in until 8:00 and went for a run.  I ran a circuitous route that I hadn't done before and enjoyed a slow 5.4 miles in about 59 minutes.   I listened to some 70's classic rock and just cruised...it was nice to sleep in, nice to feel rested(ish) and nice to run without any pacing requirements.  Today, David and I enjoyed a 29 mile bike ride together.  It was awesome!  I didn't push pace or worry that we weren't hitting our numbers.  Just pedaling...as God intended...LOL.

It was awesome until I wrecked...  Have you ever heard of anyone getting stuck in their front wheel?  Yah, me neither.  Oh, but, I did it!  We were going across an intersection in a residential neighborhood and my front tire hit a bad part of the sidewalk.  My cleat popped out of the pedal and my foot bounced forward and caught in my front wheel.  As the wheel continued to turn, my leg was fed up in between the frame and the tire.  I went down relatively softly on my right side.  In the middle of the street, naturally.  Everything is fine -- I will probably have a nice bruise to show for it tomorrow.  In the shape of a 23cm tire...

Glad I was riding with my body guard!

Last week, I went ahead and cut my calories way back.  I was getting around 1850-2000 during HIM training and managed to lose a paltry 6 pounds this year.  I am scaling back to 1550-1700 for the next 5 weeks until double half marathon training begins.  I've been hitting my numbers and seeing results.  Last week I didn't log any extra calories burned through workouts, so I'm hoping to see even better numbers this week.  I'd really like to lose 10 pounds in the next 5 weeks.   Weight loss will slow again during heavier training, so I gotta do it now!

Here's to a new week tomorrow!  I'm taking Liam to get his driver's license in the morning.  Prayers gratefully accepted. :)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

IronMorton 70.3 Race Report

I think I will take a break from feverishly memorizing VBS Drama Skits and write up our experiences from yesterday.  It was a very long day, as anticipated, and I am so grateful it's all over!

We didn't have to get up insanely early -- I had an alarm set for 5:45, but my husbands internal alarm went off much earlier.  He woke me up to tell me it was 5:06, thinking that I had set my alarm for 5:00.  Gratefully, never late.  I had my standard pre-long haul breakfast of half a peanut butter sandwich and a cup of coffee.

It was absolutely pouring rain when we left for the YMCA.  We wore rain ponchos to cover our back-packs and precious contents within.  As far as getting wet -- we were going to jump in the pool anyway.  It's only about a mile or so to the Y from our house, so it was just annoying more than anything.

We had to wait about 10 minutes for the guard to arrive and open the pool.  It was a good time to take a goofy picture or two and nervously side glance each other with thoughts of "gee this seemed like a good idea a few months ago."  I wasn't worried about the swim.  Just wanted to use it as a warm up.  I shed my bike jersey and jumped in wearing my tri-shorts and sports bra.  Nobody around but my hubby -- good for them, ha!

David and I both learned something very important in the first 50 yards.  I learned that my tri-shorts have a drawstring in them...I swam down for my first flip turn and when I pushed off the wall they "slipped."  David learned that he still had his phone in the pocket of his shorts.  Thankfully it was in a plastic zip top bag to avoid wetness from the rain.  THANKFULLY.

The swim was great.  David was done with the 2100 yards about 4 minutes before I was.  I finished and slurped an energy gel.  We got our bike gear back on and headed out to our wet bikes and the wet streets.  It had mostly stopped raining, more like misting, as we left town.  By the time we got to Denton (about 15 miles in) the rain had entirely cleared and if I hadn't been wet from the pool, the weather would have been just right.  The roads were wet and made us a muddy mess, but that's the breaks.

Our halfway stop was about Crete, Nebraska.  I had been consuming calories every 15 minutes during the ride.  I had a bottle of Perpetuem and a bottle of water on my bike.  My Camelbak was loaded with 40 ounces of Cytomax and I had two Clif bars in my pocket.  Throughout the 56 mile bike ride I consumed all of that save some of the water.  Including the gel that I had after the swim, I consumed about 1100 calories on the swim and bike.

We turned north on Highway 77 to come back to Lincoln and the wind was straight out of the north about 25 miles per hour.  It felt like we were barely moving.  We did have a flat tire, but fortunately I ride with the Fastest Tube Changer in the West.  Back on our way, we rode home and were grateful to get off the bikes.

Here's where there is a distinct disadvantage to doing a Homespun event.  We were HOME.  We transitioned in our lovely bedroom with our comfy bed.  I could have laid down and taken a nap!  In fact, I was yawning quite a bit as we changed.  I changed my shirt, hat and shoes and stuffed three gels in my top and we were off on the run.

As we took off, David had some awful stomach pain.  He did his level best to run through it, but we did some walking here and there and finally just walked the last nine miles of the run.  I took gels on my same schedule of 3, 7 and 11 miles and had my hydration belt full of water.  I stopped at a gas station halfway and ate the most delightful bag of plain potato chips under the sun.  I normally don't even like potato chips, but I discovered during Marathon training, the power of having something salty and crunchy late in the miles when all you've had is sweet and squishy all day!  I had 500 calories in the form of gels and chips, on the run.

We finished together and came home for a big glass of BCAA's to combat post event soreness.  David soaked his feet in cold water and I took a full on ice bath.  The kids had made pizza and we spent the evening relaxing.

Today, we are laying around doing nothing.  I don't feel terribly bad.  My hips are pretty sore, probably from all the walking.  Walking uses way different muscles than running does.  David has a couple of blisters, but we are both doing pretty darn good!  We can add a check mark in the box next to this item on our Bucket List.  DONE!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Gearing Up

Today is the day we start Carb Loading for our long course triathlon on Saturday.  It always makes me snicker a bit to even say the words, because it's a greatly mis-understood concept.  I didn't even truly understand the "why" and "how" until I trained for a Marathon.

Unlike Micheal in this clip from "The Office" -- the right time to carb load is NOT right before the start of the race!    With all the Pasta Feeds the night before events, it's commonly thought that a carb rich meal the evening before ought to do it.  In fact, it takes three to seven days of increased carb consumption and decreased activity to glean the benefits of Carbo Loading.

If all that is just making you bored to death -- I'm sorry.  Just know that I will be eating mostly whole grain bagels, bread, crackers and pastas along with drinking juice, chocolate milk and Gatorade while doing less activity than is healthy for my psyche the next few days.

I'm getting nervous, watching the weather and being pretty excited all at once.  I'm trying not to think any further than the event its self, because David and I are doing the drama for VBS starting on Sunday night.  We may not make it to church Sunday morning...I don't like to skip -- but we may need the rest.

I need to quickly consider what we are going to eat on Saturday evening and Sunday.  Other than ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING WE CAN GET OUR HANDS ON.  I don't want to spend a ton of money on take out -- but can't expect myself to cook those two days.  Standing and walking around may be a challenge, in fact.  I also, normally, grocery shop on Saturdays -- but may need to do that Friday evening.

When people at church have babies, we all sign up to bring them meals for two weeks.  Maybe my Sunday School class should bring meals for us for a couple of days!

I also have started a list of things for our back packs.  Unlike our fellow triathletes completing IronMan Kansas 70.3 on Sunday, our event is entirely unsupported.  We will be out on the highways of rural Nebraska for our bike ride with no aid stations and only two available potty/provision stops in those 56 miles.  I've added to the list a couple of times now, and am a little fearful of forgetting something serious -- like sun screen!  But after:

29 miles of swimming
876 miles of biking
257 miles of running this year,

I feel prepared.  I can't believe I feel that way.  A year ago when we hatched this plan, I was a little skeptical that I would feel anywhere near prepared by now.  I have really changed as an athlete and my endurance base is at a level that I am pretty proud of.  Putting in the hard work has paid off.

I have only lost 6 stinking pounds in the last 5 months, but I will take it. I'm still 25 pounds overweight these days.  No skinny triathlete, here!   I have 5 weeks in between the end of 70.3 training and the beginning of Double Half Mary training.  My goal is to lose 10 pounds.  It won't be fun, but it will make all that running much more enjoyable for my joints.

Well, that's it!  My next post will either be a freak out over the pending distance or a Race Report!  We've done the work -- let's enjoy the reward!