Thursday, December 31, 2015

What I Learned from The Sky People

Thinking It's Thursday Workouts

30ish minutes of weights from the Tri-Power book.
30 minutes on the bike - indoor trainer.  And HOW many miles did I cover after I entered the correct wheel size??  About 30% more!  Glad I fixed that little issue.

When I ride and run inside in the winter, I often work my way through a series on Netflix.  Currently, I'm working on Continuum and The 100.  The 100 is a Sci-Fi series that centers around a group of 100 young people that are basically incarcerated on a space station.  The earth has long been abandoned due to radiation contamination.  The elders decide that the earth might be viable again and - to save oxygen on the aging space station - they send the 100 to check it out.

Most of the 100 are ages 15 to 19 (though the beards on some of the boys say they are much older...)  It's been interesting to see how the conflicts and hardships they endure on the earth "age" them.  The main character is a smart, beautiful young woman named Clarke who is supposed to be about 18.

If I squint real hard I could imagine myself to have an 18 year old...oh wait...I almost do. :)

So this begins my transformation in how I look at television.  Where Clarke used to be someone I would look up to, maybe even look to for hair or makeup - possibly clothing - standards, now it's her mother - Abby.  In the series, Abby is the Medical Doctor on the space station.  She is on the ruling counsel and even becomes Chancellor as the series progresses.
"Abby" Paige Turco
"Clarke" Eliza Taylor

I have realized, lately, that I no longer relate with Clarke.  I no longer float in a weird "I have children, but they are little and not like that" gray area.  I, now, fully relate with Abby.  My older children are young adults.  My son will leave in June to pursue his career in the United States Navy.  My oldest daughter looks a whole lot like Clarke.


On the show, today, Abby (the Mom) had a tough decision to make and ultimately went against what the majority of the people thought and sided with Clarke (the teen).  I know, I'm a huge dork, but I got a little misty, a little choked up and a little proud when Abby said "I trust my daughter!"  Did the situation work out?  Yes, and no.  Just like real life.  Except in real life we aren't crash landed on earth and at war with the indigenous people group while 47 of our young people are trapped by psycho hyper-evolved humans who want to drain their bone marrow so that they can live on the surface again.

But almost.

Well, how was that for some rambling, eh?  Hope everyone has a safe New Year.  Try not to do anything you wouldn't normally do, and might regret.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Wednesday and I'm Still a Dork

What, it's Wednesday Already!? Workout

60 mintues on the bike - indoor trainer.  And just how many miles did I cover in that hour?  10.9...what!?  Really, that's it?  Garmin says I burned 525 calories in that hour.  11mph is like la-dee-dah lets go for a nice relaxing bike ride - not a 500 calorie per hour sweatfest!

Why do I tell you this?  Well - I tell you this because I figured out what a huge dork I am and why, after months of consistent workouts and better nutrition, why I am actually getting slower on the bike.


Back in the Fall, I finally got enough saved up for a new Garmin.  I was rocking the 310XT with it's beautiful 1/2" thick orange and gray face and monochrome display for two years.  Two years of a GPS enabled multi-sport watch that you can't wear anywhere else because it's SO DANG BIG.
The 310XT - functional, but huge.

So the lovely day occurred when I got the white faced watch with optional purple strap and I proceeded to configure the data screens and pair the bluetooth equipment and we went out running and swimming and biking and it was lovely.

Shortly after, I got very sick with cellulitis in my leg.  :(  Super Sad Face.  If you don't know what cellulitis is, look it up.  I'm not kidding when I say that I could have died.  It's basically a skin infection that goes septic.  I was on two different antibiotics + pain meds and I didn't work a whole day for 2 weeks.

By the time I got better, it was way time for the bike to be on the trainer for the winter.  I know, I know, there are other people that ride outside all winter.  But that is not me.  I don't like riding in the dark and I don't have the gear for the colder days.  So, I paired up my speed and cadence sensor and away I rode...well, I stayed in one place spinning my back wheel.

I noticed right away that I wasn't getting the mileage out of my effort and I figured it was because I had been sick.  Also, on the trainer, there's no hills to zoom down and it's a leeeeetle boring, so I tend to be slower.  But 50% slower?  Hmm...ok, time to get in shape, right?

Well, time has gone on now, and I have been very consistent with my workouts and *mostly* consistent with my nutrition (we shall go for very consistent after the first of the year).

This morning I figured it out!  OH MY QUAD.

When I configured my new Garmin VivoActive, I didn't put in the wheel size when I paired the speed and cadence sensor!!

Well.  I'm glad I got that figured out.  What a dork.  If all of that means absolutely nothing to you - that's ok.  Just understand that I have been building a tremendous amount of bike fitness with very little encouragement.   Sort of like running on a treadmill that's clocking you a lot slower than you're running so you run harder and harder to try to make it up.

So I fixed it and am anxious to see if it makes any difference, I just slow on the bike trainer!  Either way - I'll be super BikeFit by the time Spring rolls around!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Merry Birthday & Happy Christmas

Terrific Tuesday Workouts

30 minutes of weight training - I began a more assertive program in one of my books.  Tri Power by Paul Frediani & William Smith was included in my registration of a weekend long Triathlon Camp at the local YMCA in 2014.  It's a wonderfully well rounded program that focuses on functional strength, flexibility and injury prevention.
2+ mile run - on the treadmill.  Boo-hoo and wah-wah.  We will all bitch and complain until mid February when the icy tundra of Nebraska recedes again to just "Winter" and not "Holy Crap the Air Hurts to Breathe and My Nose is Now Frozen, HELP!!"

Yesterday I moved my bike and all my weights back into my basement where they are once again nestled lovingly next to the treadmill.  Hate to do it, but gotta get training done in these frigid months.  And I know, I know, there are people in Canada that are outside getting it done in -3 with 40mph winds...but not me, alright.  As an evolved human I've been given free will.  And a brain.

Yesterday was also my 40th Birthday.  Holy shit.  When did that happen?!  I spent the day watching Sci-Fi and eating.  In fact, that's a whole lot like what I did these past 5 or 6 days in a row.  No workouts, lots of sleep and food.  Glorious, sugar laden, fat soaked, nutrient poor, sometimes alcohol laced, FOOD.  It was absolutely wonderful.

Christmas was nice.  Of course, living in a First World country, being a home owner and a double income family there is NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT.  Yeah, my kids didn't get everything they wanted, but that's life.  David loved his new gloves. They are thin, but warm and even have a windproof mitt hidden in a little pocket that he can take out and cover up his fingers if/when running or biking in the cold.  Warm hands can make a sucky workout less so.

I was somewhat productive with my time off.  Another "Big Cook" as I fondly put it, was completed.  Sunday after church we went to the mall and got Susan's ears pierced and then headed on to Aldi for a couple wagonloads worth of groceries.  I made 20 meals that afternoon in 3 hours.  If you've never done a big batch cook before, I recommend using a plan from  Her plans are around $3 and include shopping lists and a step by step.  THREE DOLLARS for the plan and usually about $150 for 20 meals.  We eat them two at a time, sometimes depending on what it is and who is at home - but still, I end up with pre-packaged, ready to throw in the oven or dump in the crokcpot meals for TWO WEEKS that way.
No drama from this girl.  Tough.

I'm using a whole lot of CAPS in this post.  Hmm.

Glad to be somewhat back to a normal schedule.  We are going to see my sister for New Years, so that will be fun.  Our families have both grown so much that she doesn't have a spare room anymore and my kids are way to big to sleep on the floor.  So - we get to rent a hotel room and enjoy free cable and an indoor pool.  Darn.


If only I can make it through another THREE DAY work week... :)

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The Official Declaration

Wonderful Wednesday Workout

- None.  I slept in until the very last possible moment when I could awake.

Somewhere along the line yesterday, I ate something that didn't just disagree with me, it had an all out ugly divorce with my digestive system.  Had a rough night, so figured I'd stay in bed this morning.

I feel so badly when I miss an evening with the kids.  Last night, as I laid in bed, groaning and wishing the vile offender would make its exit, I could hear the fun I was missing.  David even read the book to the kids.
Aren't they cute? :)
We are reading through The Chronicles of Narnia.  If you've never read them, do it!  You've probably heard of some of the movies, or even seen one.  Let me be the first to tell you, the books are even better!

So, not much else to say, today.  I've not felt well at all and have had a few slices of toast and two bananas to eat all day.  The girls bought pizza at work and offered me a slice (they are so sweet, seeing as how I didn't even pitch in!) and even though pizza is probably my 2nd or 3rd favorite food on the planet, I declined.

I tried to eat an apple a little while ago, but I managed to nearly cut my finger off - so that's a bust.  Of course my boss comes around to wish me a Merry Christmas and a Happy Birthday as I'm typing with a makeshift tourniquet on my finger.  It's a good thing that she likes me, I'm often displaying how big of a DORK I am at all the wrong times.
I guess DORK is genetic.
Today is December 23rd.  There are eight days left of the year that includes my birthday, Christmas and New Years Eve.  I think it's time...

"I hereby declare that calories do not exist from this point forward until the stroke of midnight on January 31st.  Go, my friends, and eat and drink what you please.  Do not forsake a cookie or slow down the pour of something delicious.  Go forth and be Merry!!"

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Cold Acclimation

Terrific Tuesday Workouts

- 30 minutes of weight training in the garage while watching Agents of Shield...I'm in the endish of Season 2 and I gotta say that I sure liked the team better in Season 1.  Coulson is so weird now and I'm confused...

- 2.25 mile run in the nice cool 25 degree air.  There was very little wind and a nice covering of frost on the ground, kind of pretty!

This mornings' run in the cold made me realize that I might actually be somewhat cold-acclimated!  I have been a runner for 10 years and I think this is the first winter that I have seriously committed to acclimating to the cold.  

Just like anything that ends up being good for me, the cold acclimation is somewhat out of necessity.  My treadmill is in the basement and our 17 year old son's room is right next to it.  Have you ever tried to sleep while someone is pounding the belt on a treadmill right next to your room?  Not easy.  And...with our relationship not exactly being wonderful right now, I decided to try to run outside unless it's snowy or icy out.

It's paid off - but not without it's annoyances.  In 20's degrees, I usually wear a t-shirt, a long sleeve and a windproof jacket.  On the lower half, I go with tights and sometimes yoga pants over the top if there's wind or if the real feel is teens.  I found a pair of fleece lined undershorts at the Lincoln Running Company yesterday for $10, so those go on too.

All those layers are great - until they need to come off.  Peeling layer after layer of sweat soaked, cold, textile off your warm-on-the-inside cold-on-the-outside, middle aged, slightly squishy, good lord why is spandex so tight, body can qualify for exercise in itself!!  And it's just gross.

Those perils aside, I've noticed that my last two cold weather runs had me thinking "hmm, this isn't too bad!" which makes me think that I'm making progress in the cold.  I don't really pay attention to my pace while wearing all those layers - can't really get to my Garmin - but during this "base building" phase, who cares how fast I run? 

Do you run, walk or bike in the cold?  How cold is your limit?  I think my limit will probably be single digits - or if the wind make the real feel single digits.  

We've had a very mild winter so far - here's to more of that!

Monday, December 21, 2015

2016 Plans in Tri

I just love a new year!  So full of possibilities!  I'm not necessarily a resolution setter, but I am one who likes a fresh start.  2015 was a great year for me personally.  It was really, really, hard, but it was a great and wonderful teacher.  I learned oh, so much about limitations and how those can actually help you grow!  I have long been one to bow up my back against any and all limits, hurdles, or things trying to stop me.  How dare it!  But this year I finally, finally, learned a lesson that God has been trying to teach me for a long time.  Even I have a limit.

Enough of that, let's move on to the new year! On Saturday June 4, 2016 I will go for finish #2 of  IronMorton 70.3!  This is one of my homspun events that satisfies the distance requirement without costing me a small fortune.  A comprable event in Boulder Colorado costs $300 just for the entry fee...not to mention travel, hotel, meals, etc.

Point of information - if you aren't sure what a 70.3 triathlon is, here is some basics:

A triathlon is always in the same order of swim, then bike, and finally run.  There are also duathlons which are simply biking and running and there are aquabikes which, as the name implies are swims followed by bike rides.  But let's not get too far off the path..A 70.3 or Half Iron distance triathlon is this:

Swim = 1.2 miles... which is roughly 1900 meters or 2075 yards of  swimmy goodness.

Bike = 56 miles...beautiful time on the bike to look at the Nebraska countryside!

Run = 13.1 miles...why the point one..??  Well, I guess so it's an official half marathon.

Total = 70.3 miles of AWESOME! :)

Questions you may be wanting to ask include (no, not the one about my sanity) - How long will this take?  I won't go in to how long it takes the pro people...or the fast people...or the skinny people...or the young people...I'm not any of those people.  I am me!  So for ME, this is how it breaks down:

Swim = about 45 - 50 minutes.  This is the first leg of the journey and is essentially the warm up.

Bike = 3:30 to 3:45. All depends on the weather, traffic, how many stops, etc.

Run = 2:45 - this works out to a 12:30 average pace.  I plan to run one mile and walk one minute, rinse and repeat.

Total = 7 to 7.5 hours of triathaFUN!

I plan to train on a 20 week plan which will start on January 17th.  I'm already doing what is called "base building" and involves getting my nutrition reigned in nice and close AND making sure my body is comfortable with minimum safe distances in each discipline before adding more.  I've been base building since November 1st, and I have a pretty good foundation laid so far.

Well, there we go - I think I'm ready to start!

One of my favorite topics is triathlon.  Feel free to ask me any questions!  I also would love for some local folks to come along with me in June and swim, bike or run a bit with me.  Think about it - I could especially use the support on the run.  That's when things get sketchy...

What are your plans for the new year?  If you had all the time and money in the world, what would you do?