Sunday, February 28, 2010

End of the Week!

Today's swim and run went mostly as planned, and although I didn't quite succeed in fulfilling this week's goal to "Gather momentum by completing all workouts as prescribed," I did mostly everything as prescribed and did all but one of the workouts (14 of the 15).

The 2,100 swim today was this:
  • 300 warm up
  • 1500 straight (10:43.88 [pretty sure I added 50 here], 9:51.10, 9:41.12 for 31:16.10 total)
  • 300 cool down
I swam at MFY this morning, which is a 25-meter pool compared to the 25-yard pools at BFY and DHY. It doesn't seem like that big of a deal on the shorter workouts, but when my stroke count and breathing is always off, on every lap, I get a little thrown off. According to onlineconversion.com, my 1,500 meters is the same as if I would have swam 1,640 yards (another 6 lengths of the pool). All races are measured in meters, so I'm glad I will be swimming in a meter pool once a week, but it's kinda depressing to see my times today for 500s when I know I can swim 500 yards under 8 minutes. Oh, well, enough looking back. Time to focus on improving in the future.
Philippians 3:12-14 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
After the swim I did a quick 15-minute run. I had intended to run the requisite 50 but wasn't prepared with enough warm clothes to combat my wet hair. Instead, it was more of a transition run, during which I felt great.

Then I had to do 5 minutes extreme slow. I was plenty warm and worked hard. My HR never got above 115, but that doesn't show how hard my muscles were working!
  • Bench press: 30-lb bar
  • Standing curl: 12-lb bar
  • Seated plate front delt: 5-lb plate
  • Glute ham from top
  • Lunge (stayed at the bottom when I got to the bottom)
  • Zurcher squat: 12-lb bar
The squat was the hardest. Well, they all were hard. Then it was off to the family's house to watch the Olympics. Go USA!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Corn Chips

Yesterday I attempted to make empanadas and failed. I couldn’t get the tortilla base thin enough and thus couldn’t cook them. So I gave up and put the remainder of the dough in the fridge for today. Then I made corn chips.

I baked some and fried some, and some of the fried ones were in oil and some weren’t. The ones in the oil were the crispiest, the ones not in the oil were next best, and the baked ones were pretty soft. I might not have baked them long enough. They all tasted good, though, and I was happy with the way they turned out and my improvisation. I am, however, currently trying to dry them out to see they get a little crispier.

That was just the start of my day, and I felt like I got a lot accomplished. I did a little reading, and then I headed out to run. I had really been hoping to go outside today, even planned to ride with Team Belladium later, but just could not psych myself up enough to brave the sub 40° temps in the early morning and the 45° temps in the early afternoon. So, off to the treadmill I went. The treadmill I ended up on was set in kilometers. I did a little quick math in my head but not much—I wanted to get started and I wanted to think only about running while I was running. So I timed the Ks but wasn’t thinking much about speed or distance.

Again for this run my goal was to get faster on each split (which today was Ks). I actually liked timing Ks because they go by a lot faster than miles! I started the timer a little later, so it doesn’t quite add up to 30 minutes:
  • Totals: 30 minutes, 5.6-or-so K (obviously I was oblivious to my speed since I can run a 22-min 5K and my slowest K today was 6 something), 157 HR avg (179 max) (this also shows that I was running slower than I should have been—earlier this week my HR avg was closer to 170)
  • 1K: 5:56, 140 HR
  • 2K: 5:33, 159 HR
  • 3K: 5:20, 160 HR
  • 4K: 5:04, 165 HR
  • 5K: 4:51, 156 HR
  • 5+K: 2:35, 174 HR
Not the best, not the worst, but since I’m working on running the last part faster than the first part, I was successful and felt good.

Since I was already at the Cabana (which hasn’t been vacuumed since I did it back when Will was still here and now has the benches back—still broken and with bad upholstery), I did my isos: 10×30 seconds manual holds (minus the manual holds—I certainly don’t need them to work hard!
  • Lunge
  • Glute ham with reps to the top
  • Wall squat
  • Push up on knees
  • Altitude drop curl, 10-lb dumbbells (hard with that much weight!)
  • Crate crunch
  • I felt like I worked harder on these than I have before. I don’t know why, but I know it felt good to be working so hard after a good little run!
During church, we studied Genesis 3: God’s cursing of Satan and the ground and His telling Eve the consequences of her sin. Then I went to the BFY for a quick 1:20 ride (not quite the 1:30 I needed, but church ended late and the Y closes fairly early for a Saturday night) on a 20-mile course I’d done before. It is pretty much all uphill for the first 12 miles and then has 6 “jagged peaks” after the descent off the mountain. As much as I wanted to finish it before I got kicked out, I did not succeed. I will be back to conquer it and to beat my previous time (which is 1:24). Fortunately I don’t have to ride tomorrow, because I will be up early to swim at MFY and then hopefully run outside if it’s fairly decent. I’m aiming for an outside run because I don’t think I can stand 50 minutes on the treadmill, but we’ll see how it goes.

Friday, February 26, 2010

SwimBikeRun

Yesterday I remembered how much I enjoy this sport, how much I enjoy doing what God has given me the ability to. Hopefully I can continue to remember, but if I can't I've told two good friends who I know will remind me when I need to hear something positive about the sport and training. I had an awesome time talking with Anna all day and need to remember how much experience she has racing at a high level. She will be a good resource when I need encouragement.

Today was a great training day: Swim, Bike, Run. It was like a race, only at a little lower intensity and all inside.

Swim 2,200:
  • 350 warm up
  • 8×25 drills
  • 8×100@10sec (25 build/25 descend), with times of 1:29.40, 1:33.38, 1:36.14, 1:38.65, 1:38.78, 1:36.20, 1:37.14, 1:40.23
  • 6×50@20sec sprint with times of 38.09, 40.91, 41.13, 41.74, 41.77, 43.01 (I actually did these on 1 minute, so I got less than 20 seconds rest for most but still felt well-enough recovered)
  • 8×25@15sec kick with Leanne! She pushed me to kick fast and hard, neither of us used flippers, and we were typically finishing each in 25 seconds (we did a few in 24 and one in 26)
  • 350 cool down
Ride 1:00. Then it was on to the bike. I took about 10 minutes between swim-bike to change and realized how much I appreciate being able to swim in my bikerun clothes in races! I had intended to bring my bike to the Y and set up my trainer, but I knew they had a few classes going on in the studio so decided to just use one of the spin bikes. It was good because I could watch my cadence.

Run 10-min transition. The final thing on the list was a minute transition run, basically just to make sure you can run after you get off your bike. I felt great! I had to get off the bike and hurry upstairs to the track, which is 18 times around per mile. My first 18 laps were under 8 minutes. I didn't think I felt that good, but evidently I did!

It was great to have the day off and get some stuff done, run lots of errands, make supper, chat with Nancy, and relax. Bible time, blog time, sleep time, I can think of only a few things that would have made this day better.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

CompuTrainer Class: Building Aerobic Capacity III

The only workout I had time for today was my ride, because Anna and I are headed to Atlanta for a conference with Ravi Zacharias later today!

I rode the prescribed 1:15 with the ladies from Team Belladium at Todd's studio. The ride was similar to last week's, with a few 7-minute intervals at 80 RPM, 1-minute intervals at 90-95 RPM, and 7-minute intervals at 110 RPM. Although I still couldn't maintain 110 RPM, I was at between 5-10% better this week than last, actually able to maintain over 105 and reach 110. I felt strong. I have no idea how far or how fast we went or anything like that; the only stats I have are HR and that's in the car. All I know is it was a good ride.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Negative Split Work

Today's swim was not easy. I felt like I was sinking when I started, but I tried to work hard. My legs didn't seem to want to kick hard. But I just kept thinking about how much faster I have to get if I want to be really competitive, dug in, and did all 2,000 yards (with flippers for the cd):
  • 350 wu
  • 8×25 drill
  • 11×100@5sec (1:33.62, 1:40.06, 1:41.55, 1:40.57, 1:41.14, 1:41.51, 1:43.43, 1:41.41, 1:42.27, 1:40.62, 1:39.63 [19:27.52 total]; 1:40.55 average, times rounded up)
  • 350 cd
Yesterday's times (1:35.57 average): 9×100@5sec (1:27.73, 1:34.50, 1:35.64, 1:36.45, 1:36.45, 1:36.51, 1:38.96, 1:37.63, 1:37.94 [15:12.34 total])
Last Wednesday's times (1:46): 10×100@5sec (1:30.88, 1:42.95, 1:48.07, 1:48.92, 1:47.97, 1:46.32, 1:47.42, 1:47.93, 1:52.66, 1:48.92 [18:30.01 total])
Last Tuesday's times (1:39.55): 8×100@5sec (1:35, 1:38.38, 1:40.79, 1:41.15, 1:40.96, 1:39.34, 1:39.02, 1:39.92)

I know I'm not going to drop a lot of time every day, but if I can at least stay consistent from day to day and drop a little at a time, maybe a few seconds every couple weeks, I think I'll be happy.

I had been hoping to run outside but also needed groceries, so I stopped at MFY for a treadmill run. I like my new K-Swiss shoes! I shouldn't have gone 40 minutes for y first run in them, tho, because the final 5-10 minutes were slightly painful (blisters were forming on my heels). But I had a revelation during this run: If I want fulfill my goals, it's not going to cost me nothing. It might hurt, it might be had, but if I'm going to succeed, I'm going to have to get through all that. The goal for today was to run each mile faster than the previous. They weren't fast, and I warmed up for a good 5 minutes, but I achieved my goal!
  1. 9:21, 156 HR
  2. 8:06, 173 HR
  3. 8:03, 176 HR
  4. 7:57, 179 HR
  5. 7:36, 182 HR
I broke this into eight 5-minute intervals and did the first 30 minutes that way. Then I changed to ten 1-minute intervals to finish. It might have been odd, and I was talking to myself the entire time trying to encourage myself to stay strong and run right and have fun so people walking past probably thought it odd, but it worked. Now I just have to continue increasing the pace and I'll be good to go. My average HR was 169, max HR was 188.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Already Behind

I am really trying to figure out how to get in everything that I want to. On Sunday, I planned out a hopefully workable schedule, but it's only one day into my training week and I'm already behind. Here's what I'm hoping to accomplish every week:
  • Monday: rest—This means do something fun, do something with someone, go to the grocery store, rest, take a walk or two, play the piano, read the Bible, basically just don't train and go to bed early.
  • Tuesday: isos in the AM, swim at lunch, ride in the PM
  • Wednesday: swim at lunch, run in the PM
  • Thursday: ride in the AM, isos at lunch, run in the PM (hopefully with Anna)
  • Friday: swim at lunch, ride after (with transition run if required)
  • Saturday: ride in the AM, run right after (especially if it's a brick workout), isos after church
  • Sunday: run in the AM, swim in the later AM, or switch the two around if it will warm up enough to run outside
So I started today by getting up early to do this morning's workout, 3×30sec heavy:
  • Lunge: first rep was 45-lb bar with a 25-lb plate on each side, but I couldn't stand up under it so changed to a 10-lb plate on each side for the remaining 2 sets
  • Glute ham: @60*, with 25-lb plate on chest (during this time Wayne was trying to talk to me—people can't usually tell that I'm working hard, and I don't know if that's a good or bad thing)
  • Glute ham: @bottom, body weight only
  • Standing ham: 25-lb plate. I can do at least 45lb, but it's really awkward to hold.
  • Push up: going to have to save for later
  • Preacher curl: 40-lb bar
  • Scap pull up: going to have to save for later
  • Crate crunch: going to have to save for later
Thus I did not finish everything. The swim went well, though, and I did all 2,000 yds:
  • 350 wu
  • 8×25@10sec drills
  • 9×100@5sec (1:27.73, 1:34.50, 1:35.64, 1:36.45, 1:36.45, 1:36.51, 1:38.96, 1:37.63, 1:37.94 [15:12.34 total]) (last Wednesday's times were 1:30.88, 1:42.95, 1:48.07, 1:48.92, 1:47.97, 1:46.32, 1:47.42, 1:47.93, 1:52.66, 1:48.92 ([18:30.01 total]; last Tuesday's times were 1:35, 1:38.38, 1:40.79, 1:41.15, 1:40.96, 1:39.34, 1:39.02, 1:39.92)
  • 4×25@20sec sprint (19.21, 19.50, 19.06, 18.61) (last Tuesday's times were 18.77, 18.33, 18.69, 19.83)
  • 8×25@15sec kick
  • 350 cd
My hundreds were definitely more where they should have been today, and they (1:35.57 average) were faster than Tuesday (1:39.25 average) by, rounded up, 3 seconds average and faster than Wednesday (1:46 average) by 10 seconds average (but that was when I was contending with 2 other people people in my lane). This is still nowhere near Bree's time of 1:05. I could never do that—I can't even get a 25 under 15 seconds! Even if I quadrupled my shortest 25 time, I would finish in 1:14.44. I guess I still have some work to do to get down to that competitive speed!

If only I can remember how I feel today when I get to Friday's swim and Sunday's swim and am feeling tired. I could use a text every day like I got today that reminded me, "You're strong!" Or I could just remember and quote and believe that "It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of deer and sets me on my high places."

The afternoon ride was also good but happened on the trainer. 1:20 total, with sufficient time to warm up and cool down (30:40 each), and a main set of 8×20sec@2min power, high-gear intervals. Then I did push up, no weight. I did not do scap pull up or crate crunch.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Peanut Butter Bars

Today was a rest day, and although I pretty much rested Sunday as well, I took advantage of not having any training to do by spending some time in the kitchen making peanut butter bars. Now I have a good snack that should last me a while! This recipe came from my mom, and the bars are delicious!
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 and 1/2 cups oats
  • 1/2 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (mini are best) or 1/2 cup mini M&Ms (which don't melt)
  1. Mix honey and peanut butter well, melting over low heat if necessary. Add vanilla and stir well.
  2. Add oats, seeds, and salt to peanut butter mixture.
  3. Spread 3/4 of the mixture in a greased or foil-lined 9×9" pan.
  4. Allow the remainder of the mixture to cool, then mix in chocolate chips. Spread on top of the rest of the mixture in the pan.
  5. Eat and enjoy!
I modified this slightly: I doubled the entire recipe and used a 9×13" pan instead. I didn't have sunflower seeds, so I just eliminated that. I also eliminated the salt, since peanut butter is salty enough. Then I mixed everything together (I hadn't heated the peanut butter and didn't have to worry about the chocolate melting) and spread it all out in the pan at the same time.

They turned out well and I cut them into 45 approximately 1-inch squares. They will stay in the refrigerator and should be a good grab-and-go sort-of-healthy snack for a couple weeks. You can also roll them into balls instead of pressing them into a pan and then they're even easier to grab and go!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Isos only, skipping swimrun

Given the persistent stomachache that I had most of the day, the fact that I completed one-third of today's workout is pretty surprising. I spent about an hour in the hot tub, outside, and that was fabulous. Then it was off to a meeting for B.E.A.T., a new triathlon club in Brentwood. The meeting was at the Y and I took my stuff with me, just in case I started feeling better. I did feel a little better, so I did my isos workout, slightly modified. 10x10seconds manual holds (no manual holds, since my partner Will deserted me for Arizona), 2 sets:
  • Lunge with Russian lunge: I omitted the RL
  • Glute ham with reps to the top
  • Squat with stick: I switched to wall squat
  • Push up on knees
  • Altitude drop curl with light bar
  • Scapular pull up
  • Crate crunch

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Outside!

It has been absolutely beautiful today. It didn't warm up until later, so I rode my 1:15 on the trainer and then headed outside for my 30-min run. I broke the ride into 5 15-minute segments, getting off the bike after each one and doing a 1-min scap pull up. I knew I wouldn't do the entire 5 minutes, and this was a good way to get it done. Plus it got me riding but let me get off my bike. I am looking forward to 2 days in a row not having to sit on my seat.

The run was my 4+ mile out and back from the apt. Total, it took me 43 minutes to do the 4 miles. I ran 30 and an additional 47 seconds to make it back to the corner into the complex. Then I did my 2×20 second strides (which I'm not really sure what they are, but I at least got my legs moving a little faster for 20 seconds). I still felt very tired, but it was so nice going outside! I also did the crate crunch from yesterday, which means I omitted push up (tried and failed), 1-leg squat (tried and failed because I don't have a good bench), and wall squat.

For a fun activity, I joined Anna and Josh at Otter Creek Church for a little dance lesson. We went expecting to learn Swing but ended up on the side of the gym that was learning the Cha Cha. We missed the very beginning and thus the basic steps but tried to pick it up as the instructors went along. This was not easy, as there were 100+ people there and it wasn't as if they could have stopped and waited for each person who didn't get it. Eventually I partnered up with a guy named Mark who actually helps instruct Ballroom dancing. So I did pick up a little, but he was trying to go through about 18 new steps and moves with me and I was becoming increasingly overwhelmed. I didn't stay for the actual open-floor dancing due to an increasing headache and stomachache. Neither did I much mind, since the open dancing was swing and I know so little of that I would have just sat on the side and watched, feeling intimidated.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Two Steps Backward, One Step Forward

Today has not gone much like I'd planned. Thus I've been thinking the following:
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. James 4:13–16
Not that I have any really big plans, even, but life really is just a vapor and any plans we make can change at any time if God has other plans. I worked this morning and then stopped at BFY to swim the following:
  • 350 warmup
  • 8×25 drills
  • 5×150@15sec 50 hard, 25 easy
  • 4×50@20 sprint
  • 8×25 kick
  • 350 cooldown
Unfortunately, I felt awful in the pool. How, I wondered, could I have felt so great the previous couple days, swam so well, ridden well, and then get in the pool the next day and just not have it? I couldn't do nothing, especially since I was already in the pool. I just kept thinking that if anyone were there with me I probably would have done it all, and I know Will would have said, "We're here; you're going to do it." So I didn't do it all (wu, drills, kick only; 750 total), but I did something and worked hard. I also had the following to do (since I couldn't fit it in yesterday); 5 minutes of work:
  • Push up on knees
  • Curl (15-lb bar)
  • Scap pull up
  • Crate crunch
  • Lunge
  • 1-leg squat
  • Standing ham
  • Wall squat
And I thought my arms weren't working in the pool! I couldn't make it more than a minute during the push up, and I absolutely did not want to do it. I just couldn't work hard; I felt like I was pacing myself and hated that, I wanted to be able to work hard, so I decided to postpone that one. I did the curl because it required equipment. Then I stood for about 5 minutes in the sun, just standing there trying to collect myself.

It was so nice out that I went to the car wash. I didn't care that there were 12 cars ahead of me and it would take at least an hour (that was my initial estimate; 1:20 later I was getting my chance for a cleaning). I just needed to do something that wouldn't require thinking. So what did I do as soon as I put my car in park the first of 12 times? I got out and did my 5-minute lunge. Each wash was around 7 minutes, so it was perfect. 5 minutes of work, move my car, 5 minutes of work. I also did the standing ham. Then I spent some time reading. It was probably the most relaxing afternoon ever, and I came back home feeling refreshed.

Team Belladium was supposed to meet to climb tonight and I wanted to visit with Nancy, ride my bike, shower, eat supper, and make it to Nashville by 6. Nancy wasn't home, so I hopped on my bike earlier than I'd planned. I'll be honest: I got on my bike thinking, "I've only done a third of the swimming and a third of the isos, so if I do at least a third or half of this hour I'll be OK." After about 10 minutes, I decided that was an awful thought. Just because I failed to complete the previous two things didn't mean I had to fail at this one too. So I determined to do it. It was only an hour, at moderate aerobic pace, on the trainer, and I did it. One down.

I had yet to shower when 5 o'clock rolled around, Mom called for a quick chat, and I found out most of the other potential climbers wouldn't be able to make it. So no Climb Nashville tonight, and I couldn't be happier. Plus I made one strong mental step forward, even if I made two steps backward. If only I could always remember that this is what God made me for, that this is bringing Him glory, that I really do enjoy training and racing.

I also got some new shoes, and I'm so excited to run in them!

New shoes!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

CompuTrainer Class: Building Aerobic Capacity II

Yum!

The team and their groupies...I'm so glad they've adopted some of us!
Lisa, Todd, Parri, Lisa, Cali, Shelly, Kathy
Anna, Jen, Valerie, me
Lee, Jonell, Chatty, and Lane: missing

Last week I was in the middle of a week of rest and rode so well; I felt great, refreshed, fast, all that good stuff. Today I am in the middle of a week of work and rode terribly. No exaggeration.

Warming up...Chatty, Cali, me, Shelly, Todd, in the front; Anna, Kathy, Lee, Parri, Valerie, Lane in the back

The prescribed workout was the following:
  • 12-minute warm up
  • 7 minutes at 80 RPM
  • 1 minute at 90–95 RPM
  • 7 minutes at 110 RPM
  • 4 minutes rest
  • Repeat the previous 4 for 4 total sets
  • Quick cool down
I managed to maintain 80 RPM for those intervals and 90–95 for those intervals, but I never made it above 109 for the 110 intervals. In fact, I could barely maintain 105 during the first one and was happy to get up to 100 for the remaining few. Just getting up there was a struggle—there was no staying there! I just could not make my legs move fast. I don't know why, because I kept telling myself I could do it. The legs just would not cooperate. My totals, significantly shorter than last week, were 21.5 miles in the first hour, and about 31 total, I think.

We had a full house for our big ride before we celebrated Todd's 40th birthday with delicious breakfast foods and cake. Everyone brought something good, we replenished the calories we'd just spent, and Todd was excited about his present. Lisa had her camera out before and after, and Ashley dropped by and took a group picture also.

The food, the cake, the birthday boy, all the good stuff!
I got in a great 40-minute run after work, outside! I don't have any idea how long it was; all I know is that it was finally nice enough to run outside. My fingers are still freezing and I had to turn my heater on in my apt, but it was outside.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Circle Swimming

Today's swim was a good, hard, eventful one. I had to circle-swim with Bob and another guy (who had never circle-swum before), was faster than both of them, tried my best to take only my allotted 5-seconds rest, was getting scissor-kicked from both sides by a lady in my lane (before she finished and the other guys game) and a man in the lane next to me. I tried to keep my focus and felt like I succeeded. The 1,900 yards looked like this:
  • 350 wu
  • 8×25 drills
  • 10×100@5sec rest: 1:30.88, 1:42.95, 1:48.07, 1:48.92, 1:47.97, 1:46.32, 1:47.42, 1:47.93, 1:52.66, 1:48.92 (18:30.01 total)
  • 350 cd
Due to all the distractions/trying to not run into my lane mates/trying to avoid getting kicked/trying to swim well/trying to get to the wall without hitting anyone and still flip-turn, my hundred times today are slightly slower than my hundred times from yesterday's 8×100@5sec (1:35, 1:38.38, 1:40.79, 1:41.15, 1:40.96, 1:39.34, 1:39.02, 1:39.92).

I ran the prescribed 40 minutes after work. On the treadmill while watching Curling and Women's Hockey in the Olympics. Not my first choice, but I wasn't prepared to run outside in the sub-40-degree weather. I really hope it warms up soon.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Back in Full Swing

Day 1 back into my training went well. Day 2 did not start out so hot, but it definitely ended well. I didn't get up to swim in the morning because of the snow—I looked out my window, wondered whether the Y would even be open, and went back to sleep. But I accomplished it during lunch, all 2,000 yards:
  • 350 warm up
  • 8×25 drills
  • 8×100@5sec (1:35, 1:38.38, 1:40.79, 1:41.15, 1:40.96, 1:39.34, 1:39.02, 1:39.92)
  • 4×25@20sec sprint (18.77, 18.33, 18.69, 19.83)
  • 8×25 kick (no flippers since I left mine at home)
  • 350 cool down
This took me about 40 minutes. Had I gone all out with no rest, I thought it would have taken me about 32 minutes, so this was definitely faster than I'd expected. And I was quite consistent—within 6 seconds for all the hundreds and all right around where I'd been last month (the last time I'd been swimming), and within 1 second on the 25s. These will be good benchmarks for the rest of the training season.

After work, it was off to the trainer for a 1:10 ride. The warm up was one time through my favorite CD, tracks 1-5, 1 minute of quiet time, 7×20 seconds @ 2 minutes rest power intervals (high gear) with no music, one more time through my favorite CD, set on random, 1 minute of quiet time. Supper, trying to figure out how to make my HRM pick up my HR, off to bed!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Quick Workout

I didn't have the most time today, and even though Monday's are supposed to be my days off, I decided to do my first day of workouts from Will. It went well. I worked hard and was happy with how I felt, especially after nearly a week off.

5 on, 5 off, through 40
  • Lunge on crates (I used the aerobic steps, and unfortunately they kept sliding; I might have to try something different next time)
  • 1-leg squat (I have yet to enjoy or appreciate this one, but I did it all)
  • Glute ham
  • Squat with light bar, slightly below parallel (crazy hard!)
  • Push up on knees
  • Preacher curl
  • Scap pull up
  • Crate crunch
I think I was distracted by more people than ever before, which makes me appreciate our non-distracting, Cabana workouts even more. Someone asked me about my shoes. Someone else was trying to recruit people for Pilates Reformer classes. A lady recognized me from volleyball. One of Lauren's friends was there. It's a good thing I was determined to finish everything before we went to supper, and I really had to work hard to keep myself from being even more distracted.

Then it was off to meet Beth, Kristie, Lisa, and Yvonne for dinner at Jasmine Thai in Cool Springs. I doubt I've ever eaten Thai food before, and it was spicy! But then we got some good, sweet dessert: Fried bananas with honey and mango ice cream. Yum.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Olympic-Distance and Half-Iron Distance Training Programs

The first 16 weeks are ready for me to start training. Here is the majority of the training schedule.

16-Week Olympic-Distance Triathlon Training Program
(From "Essential Week-By-Week Training Guide," Fitzgerald)

I plan to work in 3 days of isos with the option for a 4th if I'm so inclined. We'll see how it goes, but I've really missed it this week (although not enough to have called Will and asked for workouts!).

The next 20 weeks, with some overlap, are also ready. It's been a productive weekend!

20-Week Half-Iron-Distance Triathlon Training Program
(From "Essential Week-By-Week Training Guide," Fitzgerald)

Off to sleep then on to work tomorrow.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

CompuTrainer Class: Building Aerobic Capacity

This morning's class was the first in a new session at Endeavor Performance, and it was a fun one. We warmed up for 15 minutes and then got down to business: 5 minutes at 80 RPM, 2 minutes at 95 RPM, 5 minutes at 110 RPM, 5 minutes rest, repeat for 4 total 12-minute work sections and 3 rest sections. We didn't have much cool down since some of us had to go to work, but we definitely worked hard! Thankfully we had some great treats to refuel, since Parri brought delicious blueberry muffins for us all to enjoy.

Considering that this was my first workout of any kind since Saturday morning (unless you count the lunges I did on Sunday) and my first ride since last Thursday's class, I wasn't sure how I'd ride. But I felt great and ended up riding 33.5 miles in the 1:20 we were on the bike, completing 24.75 miles in the first hour! Probably one of the longest distance I've gone in an hour, and that was with a slow cadence for about a third of the time.

When I went to take a shower, a note greeted me from the mirror:

"You are so strong"
Sometimes my little camera takes crappy pictures, and this was one of those times. But I remember what the note said. How cool is that? It likely wasn't written just for me (who knows how many people use that bathroom?), but it made me smile nonetheless And look, I'm enjoying Parri's blueberry muffin!

After work, Valerie, Anna, and I went for a 4-ish-mile run around Centennial Park. The park, like Pinkerton Park, has a 1-mile loop that we went around something like 4 times. We didn't start at the start or end and the end, so it was kind of hard to tell. 7 minutes running, 1 minute walking, 4 times, then Anna and I did another few minutes. She said total it was 40 minutes. I had no agenda, no idea how fast we were running, looked at my watched only a few times, and felt great. I said I could have kept going all night!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Packing

This has been one of the oddest winters for me. Usually I have and Ironman to look forward to and thus am fairly focused on maintaining volume so I don't have to jump into long rides and runs without being prepared. This season I have one half-Ironman race at the very end of the season and the rest of my races are the significantly shorter Olympic-distance races. All that means that the training will be different—it will likely take less time but it will be at higher intensities and higher speeds.

When I told Will I didn't really want to keep up the 10 workouts a week we'd been doing, he said that was fine...as long as I took the same intensity and focus that we had during those workouts and translated it to the road. After looking at the schedule a little, I know I can do it and am glad that we've been working so hard the last 12 weeks. I will be jumping into 4 swims, 4 rides, and 4 runs in the first week!

Today I spent most of the afternoon working through my training schedule, getting 4 full weeks into my spreadsheet on the computer. If I keep that up, I'll finish the first 16-week cycle before the end of the week and have time to start on the second 20-week cycle. I'm excited and sad at the same time—I will miss spending most of my time with Will!

He called me this evening and enlisted me to help him pack. I was shocked and hadn't expected to hear from him, but I was thrilled and went over there. He put me to work cleaning up his computer while he filled suitcases and tried to get rid of stuff. We took one load out, and he called it a day. Hopefully he'll get off early and safely in the morning.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Fangtastic 5K and Predators' Game

The start of the race
This morning's 5K race was one of my favorites: the Predators' Fangtastic 5K. I like it because you get tickets to the game with your race entry fee. It's definitely not the course that I like—downtown Nashville is hilly! Anna asked me yesterday what my goal was, and I said my goals were to run consistent and run the last mile faster than the first. I did not accomplish either. However, I was faster during this race than my previous 5K (Resolution Run) by 58 seconds and was faster than last year's Fangtastic 5K by 51 seconds if my watch is right (it's different from the preliminary results, which have me finishing in 23:12).

Race notes from this year: There were 1,206 finishers (546 males and 660 females); I ended up 3rd in my age group of 174. I was 14th of the 660 females. I was 86th of the 1,206 finishers. Last year I was 3/185 in AG, 39/782 in sex, and 161/1,504 overall. This year's results are slightly better since my time was better (top 7% OA, top 2% female, top 2% AG in 2010 vs. top 11% OA, top 5% female, and top 2% AG).

Trying to stay warm...and loose
My mile times were OK; not the most consistent, but definitely not the worst I've ever run, either. And I really tried to pick it up the last mile to get my pace faster that mile than the first. It helped that a bit of it was downhill and I kept looking at my watching knowing I was close to finishing in the 22 minute somewhere. The preliminary results said my finishing time was 23:12, but my watch says I finished in 22:58.
  • Totals (the satellites weren't picked up until a little after I started, so the total distance and pace are slightly off): 22:58, 2.95 miles, 7:47 pace (3:43 best—prob not quite right!), 367 cal (no HRM)
  • Mile 1: 7:10 (5:17 best)
  • Mile 2: 7:41 (6:03 best)
  • Mile 3.1: 8:06 (7:23 pace, 3:43 best)
This wasn't as consistent as my miles from the Res Run, where there were only 20 seconds between slowest and fastest miles. This time there were 31 seconds, but the first and last miles were significantly faster than last time, which means improvement!

Weather-wise, it was absolutely freezing. I had toe warmers, hand warmers, gloves, a head band, a running thermal and UnderArmor, and fleece tights. The coldest part of me was the tops of my feet. Because of the shoes I was wearing and the toe warmers, I was able to wear only 1 pair of socks, and evidently it was not the warmest pair. They didn't really warm up, but I just kept moving. The rest of my body felt good except my hips—not quite sure why those were sore.

I got hungry again during the race, but I just kept going. For breakfast at 8am (10am start time) I ate a bowl of oatmeal with a banana, blueberries, almonds, and honey. It tasted good but evidently wasn't enough. Around 9:10 I ate two bites of my berry almond Luna Bar and didn't want the rest of it. Then about 1.5 miles in I started feeling hungry. My stomach didn't hurt at all while I was running but as soon as I finished it definitely felt like it usually does after a good hard effort. I tried to walk normally and breathe well but didn't feel good. It's weird because it feels like cramps, but instead of being weakening it's more debilitating. Like all I want to do is lay down and curl up in a ball and make it go away or at least forget about it. It took at least 10 minutes to go away but then I felt great. I wasn't hungry after and only drank some water because I had it (I had taken in 16 oz by noon) and ate a bag of green peppers and half a bagel (the whole thing wouldn't fit in the bag I had to put it in). I was hungry when I got home, though!

Then it was off on a little free adventure to the Country Music Hall of Fame. Today they were offering free admission; I would never pay $20 for a ticket, but I wasn't going to not go since I was already downtown and had paid for parking! It was kind of interesting and I enjoyed admiring Elvis' car that's on display there.

I was also kind of remotely interested in all the gold, silver, and platinum albums that are along many of the walls throughout the museum.

It was definitely worth the free ticket, and I can now say I've done a good tourist activity downtown! Then it was off to the Predators' game later in the afternoon. They lost 3–4, but it was a good game and I was thrilled that Will came with me. Things like that are much more enjoyable with someone, especially with someone with his hockey knowledge! We had fairly decent seats, seemingly better than the $20 I paid for the tickets. I'm thinking they upgraded my tickets after TicketMaster went down and they weren't able to redeem the vouchers when I was in there the other day.

They recognized the Olympians before the game, which was exciting, and I think it made both of us think, "Some day!"

Friday, February 5, 2010

Getting it Right

This morning's workout was very similar to Wednesday morning's (or at least, similar to what I was supposed to have done that I totally misread):
  • Altitude drop legs: 10×6, 5 breaths rest
  • Wall squat: 3×1min, 20 sec rest
  • Altitude drop glute ham: 10×6, 5 breaths rest
  • Standing ham: 3×1min, 20 sec rest
  • Push up on knees: 45-lb bar, 10 deep breaths, 1 rep, 6 breaths, 2 reps, 3 breaths, 3 reps, repeat all
  • Dead lift: 20-lb dumbbells, 10 deep breaths, 1 rep, 6 breaths, 2 reps, 3 breaths, 3 reps, repeat all
  • Curl: 10-lb dumbbells, 10 deep breaths, 1 rep, 6 breaths, 2 reps, 3 breaths, 3 reps, repeat all
I was on my own for the evening workout and was actually happy about that since I wasn't sure when I was going to make the supper I had prepared all afternoon. Some of my favorite pro Ironman triathletes posted recipes recently that I wanted to try. Bree's most recent one is still on my list, but I did make her Coco Caribbean Cookies.


The main dish, however, came from Linsey Corbin: Stuffed Peppers.

Almost done
She's already typed out the recipe, and I pretty much followed it exactly with the exception of a shorter cook time. I must agree: It rocked! However, it took at least 2 hours total, including preparation, which is a lot longer than I usually spend on food all day. Today I had a little extra time (enough even for a 2-hour nap!), so I didn't mind.

The peppers were in the oven while I did lots of phasic exercises that will hopefully help me be fast tomorrow (since they basically make you turn your muscles on and off as quickly as possible). It was the same methodics for all exercises: 10 reps, 3-count rest, 15 reps, 3 rest, 20 reps, 5 rest, 25 reps, 5 rest, 30 reps, 10 rest, 35 rest, 10 rest, 40 reps.
  • Standing front delt
  • Bent over lateral delt
  • Leg curl
  • Leg extension
  • Bent over front delt
  • Biceps curl
  • Hip flexion
  • Hip extension
Will said 1-leg dead lift was also on the plan but that I could skip it. Skipped. We also scratched a few so that it wouldn't take too long. Had I not had food in the oven I would have done them, but I indeed skipped them and the ones I did took around 40 minutes.

Then I got to enjoy the fruit of my kitchen labor.

Stuffed peppers with pita chips and hummus...tasty!
And speaking of fruit I'm reminded of one of my favorite and one of the most challenging chapters in the Bible: Proverbs 31. It's all about a woman of virtue, a woman of valor, "in the sense of all forms of excellence."
She is like the merchant ships, she brings her food from afar. She also rises while it is yet night, and provides food for her household. ... She girds herself with strength, and strengthens her arms. ... Strength and honor are her clothing; she shall rejoice in time to come. She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness. ... Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her the fruit of her hands, and let her own works praise her in the gates.
What an amazing woman, one who I am striving to be!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

CompuTrainer Class: Tough Tempo Ride

We had a fabulous ride this morning. It was approximately 70 minutes of tempo riding, which basically means staying right near the top of your aerobic threshold for the entire time. It was broken up slightly, into six 11-minute intervals with 1 minute between 1 and 2, 4 minutes between 3 and 4, and 1 minute between 5 and 6. In the 84 total minutes of riding, we rode between 30–35 miles, keeping our cadence between 95–100 the entire time.

I enjoyed watching my HR supposedly go up and up—according to the stats, my max was about 213 (every time I took my own HR, it was around 180, so I'm thinking the monitor was a little off). I hit 37 MPH (sometime in the last minute, because during the last 3 minutes I changed gears to make myself work harder) and did 34 miles during that effort (including the warmup). I kept watching Parri, Lisa, and Lee get closer and closer, but thankfully they never caught me. They were riding hard and I was worried, even though their side had started almost 5 miles behind our side!

My legs felt great during the entire ride. I didn't feel like I got tired at all, and I kept my cadence and speed steady the whole time. I actually felt like I was getting stronger as we went along—like right where I was riding, I could have stayed all day. Todd set my wattage based on the results of last week's test, and my threshold was up to 197. I still had a hard time keeping my WPK around 2.0 but definitely worked hard.

Yesterday I said I felt accomplished because I did everything Will had given me to do. Then Bree reminded me of real accomplishment:
Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished! Luke 1:45
The evening workout was a fun one. Will introduced something new: tonic exercises. They're like the phasic exercises only you keep your muscle turned on the whole time and it's smooth. The methodics looked something like this: phasic 20 seconds, tonic 30 seconds, 5 deep breaths rest, phasic 10 seconds (PTP), 3 minute ISO. The exercises looked something like this (may or may not have been in this order, but it was definitely upper body/lower body, lower body/upper body):
  • Bent over front delt PTP
  • Wall squat ISO
  • Bent over lateral delt PTP
  • Wall squat ISO
  • Leg curl PTP
  • Push up ISO
  • Hip flexion PTP
  • Push up ISO
  • Biceps curl PTP
  • Wall squat ISO
  • Bent over triceps extension PTP
  • Wall squat ISO
  • Leg extension (knee bent in front, kicking foot out, keeping knee still) PTP
  • Push up ISO
  • Hip extension PTP
  • Push up ISO

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Accomplished

My 1am text said to do the following (which I accomplished):
  • Altitude drop legs: 10x5, 5 breaths rest
  • Wall squat: 3x1min, 20 sec rest
  • Altitude drop glute ham: 10x5, 5 breaths rest
  • Standing ham: 3x1min, 20 sec rest
  • Bench press: 45-lb bar, 3 deep breaths, 1 rep, 3 breaths, 2 reps, 3 breaths, 3 reps, repeat all
  • Curl: 30-lb bar, 3 deep breaths, 1 rep, 3 breaths, 2 reps, 3 breaths, 3 reps, repeat all
It also said run or have fun tonight. Since it's still snowy/icy, that means I'll probably be making a trip to the grocery store. I heart Publix :-)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Extreme Slows

The morning workout was a tough one:
  • Front delt: 10 min extreme slow, seated by the wall, 1.5-lb dumbbells
  • Zurcher squat: 10 min extreme slow, 25 lb
  • TFL: R, L; this was a very hard 20 minutes. My hips were tired from yesterday, and I was having real trouble lifting my legs after about 2 minutes, much less moving them. I had to stop about every 20 seconds to shake it out.
The afternoon workout was more of the same only solo:
  • Zurcher squat: 5 min extreme slow, 25-lb plate
  • Glute ham: 5 min extreme slow
  • Front delt: 5 min extreme slow, seated by the wall, 1.5-lb dumbbells
  • Curl: 5 min extreme slow, seated on a bench, 5-lb dumbbells
  • Crate crunch: 5 min extreme slow
I will be honest: I was completely exhausted just thinking about having to do the afternoon workout. I wanted to do it and do it well, but my legs were so tired. I turned off the radio and spent the drive from work to the Y talking to God, trying to listen to Him, and praying for strength. Anna and I had a great discussion over the weekend about doing things by God's strength and not our own, and I knew that was what I would have to do tonight. When I ran the marathon last year, I had the following two verses on my mind, and I meditated on these tonight as well:
"If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small."
Proverbs 24:10

"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."
Philippians 4:13
The truth of the second verse helped me overcome the truth of the first verse. If my strength were small, I would fail. But because I have the Holy Spirit in me and Christ giving me strength, I can do all things, things that glorify Him. He has given me the ability and desire to train, and thus it glorifies Him when I do so and use it as a way to let other see God and His love.

Midway through the workout I saw this other verse on the wall and went home and meditated on it as well. God is good and definitely was with me today. I love Him!
"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen."
Ephesians 3:20–21

Monday, February 1, 2010

Sledding at Work

We had a fun, hard workout this morning. The preworkout was kind of amusing, with UJohn calling at 5:50 wondering if he could stay at my apt while we worked out—I said yes and immediately turned the heat on; and with Will not being able to get his car out and thus driving his parents' car while barely being able to see out of the windshield. Thankfully he made it safely and the apt warmed up adequately, so it was all good!
  • 1-arm dead lift: 5×3 each side, 30 lb
  • Glute ham: 5 min iso
  • 1-leg dead lift: 20 each side, repeat, 30 lb
  • Standing ham: 3 min iso
  • 1-arm bench press: 20 each side, 15 lb (yes, I could have done more), 3 breaths at top and bottom
  • Curl: 2×75 seconds, 15-lb dumbbells
Off to work. They have mostly completely plowed the roads, but the highway just north of Old Hickory Blvd was still terrible.

We had a little fun during an impromptu break time at work: Sledding! We have a few little hills around us, and Matt put together a sled with a poster and a cardboard box. Kelly went down and we got video of it:

video
Kelly looking like a pro!

A few others sled down the hill as well, and we're hoping that the snow is still here tomorrow so we can use Kelly's sled, go across the street, and have even more fun!

For the evening workout, we did more of the same from the morning only with added weight:
  • 1-arm bench press: 20 each side, 25 lb, 3 breaths at top and bottom
  • 1-leg dead lift: 20 each side, repeat, 35 lb
  • Standing ham: 3 min iso
We might have done more, but all I wanted to do when I got home was eat supper, read the Word, and go to sleep; I didn't want to remember what we'd done.