Sunday, August 26, 2007

What was I thinking?

It's hard to believe it was just last Sunday I was doing my triathlon. It's funny - all this hard work and training and then it's all over with - a bit anticlimactic. I was a little stiff the day after - especially in my shoulders. Yesterday I went for my massage - my reward for finishing. Just what I needed!!

In the glow of finishing of feeling impressed with myself I signed up for another one!! I had been toying with the idea of signing up for it and after once again experiencing that great feeling of crossing the finish line I went ahead and signed up. Besides I've already trained and it's now only 2 weeks away. I decided to do the supersprint category this time which is shorter - 1/4 mile swim, 8 mile bike, 2 mile run. Now, I am not athletically inclined at all so for me to do not one, but two triathlons in the space of a couple weeks is amazing!!

Of course, this morning when I had to actually get back on a bike I was rethinking my whole decision to do this second triathlon. 12 miles later they were really wondering why we were doing it again!! But as they say no pain, no gain!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Triathlon Report

Saturday was beautiful! I picked up my race material and racked my bike. As I drove by the swim area and saw the buoys doubt started creeping in - could I really swim that far? Have I trained enough? And what about those hills? Yes, I told myself, I did it last year - I can do it again this year. And it seems like all I've done for the past weeks is train - I am ready.

I didn't sleep too well Saturday night and was basically awake from 3 a.m. on listening to the rain. Rain? What is this? Why didn't we get Saturday's weather? The weather report said showers in the evening, not the morning. I tried to go back to sleep but finally gave it up and got out of bed. My dad dropped me off at Qwest Field and I caught the shuttle (school bus) to Genesee Park. I laid out my transition area and then put everything into the Target bag I had brought to try and protect my shirt and towel from the rain.

I made my way down to the swim start. The butterflies were pretty strong by this point. I huddled together with my fellow pink swim caps and then it was time. We made our way into the water. The best part about the weather being yucky was that it made the water seem warm. Well, maybe not warm, but not freezing! Sally Edwards came out and pumped us up and gave us our "magic" word to get us through. My group was "brilliant"! Before I knew it they were counting us down. 3 - 2 -1 - GO! I hung back a little and let everyone else get ahead before I started out. The swim went a lot better than last year. I was able to swim crawl stroke most of the way switching to breaststroke a few times, mainly when another group of swimmers was passing me as I felt I could see better this way. Towards the end of the swim I had to fight a few pieces of lake grass. I got out of water and headed to my bike.

By the time I got on my bike the rain started coming down harder, torrential at times. I played leapfrog with a few people, they would pass me on the way down a hill, I would pass them on the way back up. I was surprised at the number of people I passed going up a hill as I don't think of myself as a good hill person. The bike route is on the freeway express lanes and the tunnels we rode through were a great break from the rain, however it was like a sauna in there. The rain drops at times were pelting and stung my face. I was really happy to reach the end of the bike. It was absolutely miserable with the rain. But the important part is that I did it.

The rain had eased up into a more recognizable Seattle-style mist when I started off on the run. I got into a pattern - run 10 cones, walk 5 and kept it up. My shoes were so waterlogged by that time I could feel the water sloshing around when I stepped down. Seriously, the driest part of the entire race was probably the swim! And I'm not kidding! I made it up the really bad hill and started down the other side towards the finish line. And I broke from my pattern of running followed by walking and ended up running the rest of the way. I was so focused on the finish line I barely saw anything else. And then I was there at the finish line! My second triathlon complete.

It was when I finished and stopped moving I realized exactly how cold I was and how wet. I got home and took an extremely hot shower. Tomorrow I will be calling to set up a massage appointment.

So now for the really important part - my times. Before last week I was hoping to improve on my times, but I hadn't put a number to it. And then I caught a cold and all hopes of improving my time went out the window. I was going to be happy to finsh. I knew if nothing else I would improve my swim time if only because they shortened the course! Ha! :) I was surprised and really pleased when I saw my times - last year I finished in 2 hours 26 minutes and this year I finished in 2 hours 8 minutes!!! I improved the most on the swim - almost 10 minutes (again some of this was due to the course being shortened). In fact, the only times I did not improve were my transition times! But I blame that on the rain.

Thanks to everyone who encouraged me through this process! I couldn't have done it without your support!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


The shoe store near my work has been advertising 20% off already reduced prices. I've been looking for a new pair of shoes but I haven't been quite sure exactly what I wanted. And tonight I found the pair of shoes I wanted! Unfortunately they were out of my size. Isn't that how it goes?

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Training Update - In the Home Stretch

So a recap of all my training this week - Tuesday was a short bike/walk brick, Wednesday was a swim day (but in the pool), and Friday was a swim day (in Lake Washington) which brings us to today which was going to be a swim/bike brick. And then I woke up this morning with a sore throat, which usually means I am getting sick so I've been drinking tea, OJ and sucking on cough drops to ward off the cold. I ended up still doing a brick, but a really short one. My main goal for the brick this morning was one, to transition at least once from swimming to biking, and two, to ride up a couple of the hills that I will need to on the actual triathlon. Mission accomplished!

Now I'll be taking some Sudafed and then it's off to beddy-bye.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Training Update - Almost there!

Tuesday I did my first brick. In triathlon training a “brick” is doing two activities in the same workout. Generally it refers to a bike/run which is what I did, well in my case when I say run what I mean is walk with an occasional burst of jogging. I started off on my bike and when I got to my turn around, my front brake came loose so I rode all the way back with only the back brake intact. For the most part the trail is is gently rolling so I wasn’t too worried about riding with only the back brake operational. I got off my bike and put it back in my car and started back on my walk/jog. The first few steps were hard. My legs felt like bricks (pun intended!). But I pushed through and that feeling passed and then I was done!

Friday was another swim in Lake Washington. I woke up to another gray, rainy morning. The whole Blue Angels flying overhead on Thursday should have clued me in to the fact Seafair was in full swing (for those not from familiar with Seafair - which meant Lake Washington was probably not the best place to swim. However, I didn’t put two and two together until I was at Lake Washington and my normal swim place was blocked off. Still determined to get a swim workout in, I found another place further down. Seafair also means a ton of boats in the water which translated into very rough waters!

Not training related, but I drove my mom’s car on Saturday. Wow – what a difference! Even though I’ve only had my car for about a month I’ve gotten used to sitting up higher. I felt as if I was sinking into the ground. I can finally say without reservation, I really like my new car!

Sunday was another brick day. Transitioning from pedaling to walking is hard. The first 100 yards or so are brutal as my legs feel like lead. But it wears off. I have been trying to do more jogging when I walk and this time I was able to walk for one song and then jog for one song. I kept up that pattern until I finished. And in keeping with the animal theme from last week, this time it was a snake that crossed my path as I was jogging. Yuck! I do not like creepy, crawley animals.

Finally, we got sad news about my Uncle Kobe this past week. He was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. Please keep him and my Aunt Linda in your prayers.