Ironman Build Week One Recap


Last week was my first build week for Ironman Lake Placid! T-5 weeks to ago till the big day! The reality of the event is starting to kick in. On July 28th I will be embarking on a 140.6 mile journey of swimming, biking, and running in order to hear Mike Reilly tell me I’m an Ironman!

This past week was a big week for me and overall it went well. My swimming is coming together nicely. My yardage has increased and I’m feeling stronger than ever in the water. However, I have noticed that my left arm is weaker than my right when pulling. Something to work on in the off-season I suppose. I just hope this new strength and speed will translate to the open water. I was supposed to swim in the lake on Sunday, but severe thunderstorms changed that plan. I’m hoping the weather will be a bit more cooperative this week.

Quality time in the pool!

Quality time in the pool!

My bike fitness has seemed to have suffered over my Fall injury break from running and cycling. I feel good on the bike and my handling skills have definitely improved, but I lost a lot of power. I know this is my first Ironman and I shouldn’t get too caught up in finishing in x amount of hours, but in my head I have this time frame for the bike and I know that I’m not going to head it. The best I can do right now is to believe in my coach’s plan and follow the pacing. I had a good lesson on Saturday’s 90 mile ride on pacing. The first 21 miles of my route hit some pretty big hills and I trashed my legs a bit pedalling up them. It showed me the importance of pacing, especially at the beginning. 112 miles is a long way

Okay, not from my rides this week... but from the Patriot Hald Aquabike

Okay, not from my rides this week… but from the Patriot Hald Aquabike

My running is so/so at the moment, which is a total bummer. Last year I improved leaps and bounds in my running capability and I was hoping that it would translate over to this year. I took all Fall off from running to heal my hip and plantar fasciitis issues to come back with more hip and this time IT band issues. I guess it’s my body’s way of telling me next year is going to be an “off-year” to fix my muscle imbalance and build aerobic endurance.

I ran twice this week. Wednesday I did 45 minutes of zone 2 running. The first 20 minutes were relatively pain-free and then the IT Band issues started to flare up a bit. However, I can run through it at this point. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing remains to be the question. Thursday I had a 30 minute T-run off the bike and had an awesome run! No pain and I was actually able to run a sub-10 minute mile in zone 2 and pain-free. Still way slower than I should be, but it’s a victory none the less.

Friday night dinner!

Friday night dinner!

One thing that I have noticed is my appetite has picked up. My lunches have now turned into 5-course meals. So much so that my supervisor had to comment about it. However, despite the fact that I want to eat everything in sight, I have managed to lose several pounds. Yay! This coming week is sure to be a big week in terms of running and cycling. Thursday night I have a 4 hour brick workout. I just hope the weather is good because I certainly don’t want to be stuck riding in the middle of a thunderstorm! I also  have a 2 hour run on Saturday. That will be the real test…

Weekly Totals:

Swim: 2:10 (6943 yards)

Bike: 8:25 (120 miles)

Run: 1:50 (9.41 miles)

Strength, Core & Yoga: 1 hour

~ Happy Training!

90 Mile Solo Ride


This past week was week one of my Ironman build to Lake Placid. Holy crap this little thing called an Ironman is happening in almost a month! This past weekend was my first BIG ride of the year. My coach gave me the workout as 6:15 or 110 miles, which ever comes first. I laughed when I first read this in TrainingPeaks because I knew 6:15 would hit on my Garmin before I hit 110 miles. The only way I would hit 110 miles with my current bike fitness is if I rode a pancake flat course with little to no headwind. Since Lake Placid is a pretty hilly course I knew I wanted to mimic the course the best I could and thus ride the North Raymond hills…

Ride Nutrition

Ride Nutrition

Originally my ride was scheduled for Sunday, but I had to work in the lab on Sunday for a few hours and I moved it to Saturday. Thank goodness I did because we got some pretty bad thunderstorms on Sunday afternoon! I wanted to time my ride on Saturday to start around a similar time I would start riding during IMLP. I started around 8:30ish, which give or take 10 minutes or so should be my tentative ETA on the bike at LP.

I headed up towards Raymond and hit Route 85. All I have to say about that road is the road conditions suck! The town did some road repair, which probably made the road worst than it was. The shoulder was full of pot holes and sand. I had about 4 inches on the white line to ride on and even there was pretty bad. Needless to say, I took my time on this road not wanting to get hit by speeding cars and/or get lost in a giant pothole.

A view from the top of Valley Road

A view from the top of Valley Road

Finally I climbed my way up Route 85 to Valley Road. This is where the real fun happens. I took Valley Road to Spiller Hill Road to Mountain Road to Route 11. I hit up at least 4-5 cat 5 climbs. My quads were quite trashed going into this ride and those hills did not help one bit. I took my time and spun up each hill, but I still spiked my power quite high. Not good. Around mile 21 I came close to a mental breakdown. My quads hurt. My bike fitness sucks. I can barely run. How the hell am I suppose to do an Ironman in 5 weeks? Not to mention a tough and hilly bike course Ironman?! Why didn’t I sign up for Ironman Florida? All these thoughts went through my head as I climbed, climbed, climbed. Once I got to Mountain Road I stopped for a few minutes to check where I was and also to calm down a bit. I can do this. 

I rode LP last year and thought the course wasn’t that bad. Yes, I believe my bike fitness was a lot better last year, but I know I can handle LP. Once I figured out where I was, I was back on course. Well, actually by this point I nixed my original planned route. I initially was going to ride around Sebago Lake and then head up and over Douglass Mountain. Yeah, I was being a bit ambitious…

Instead, I decided to head up Route 302 to Bridgeton and then go from there. The sun was out and the route had very little shade. I was starting to get hot, but I was being good with my nutrition. Around the 3 hour mark I turned into the Dunkin’ Donuts in Bridgeton to refill my now gone water bottles. I was feeling a little dizzy at this point even though I was taking salt pills and my gels. I sat down for a bit and had a couple of bits of my Bonk Breaker. I’ve been testing out solids on the bike because around the 11:30-1pm mark I get hungry and my body wants food. I could only get two bites because I wanted to puke it up. Hmmm… back to the drawing board?

Finally I hopped back onto my bike and headed towards Shawnee Peak, where I worked as a ski instructor and ski patroller during my high school and college days. Oh the memories… I forgot how long it takes from downtown Bridgeton to the mountain it takes. At this point the clouds where rolling in and I thought I was going to get poured on. I was a bit nervous at this point. The roads were mostly flat at this point, but the wind picked up and mentally I was fading a bit. Are we there yet?

A view of Shawnee Peak (and some lovely clouds) from the Causeway

A view of Shawnee Peak (and some lovely clouds) from the Causeway

Last year my first ever triple digit ride was done at LP where some of my fellow triathletes. Long rides are definitely way more fun with other people. However, doing these long rides solo is probably good for me mentally. If I can handle the distance all by my lonesome then I’ll be fine on race day!

Finally I hit Shawnee Peak around the half-way point. I headed home the back way through Denmark, Sebago, and Standish. I started to rally around this point knowing I was heading home. Most of the way home was all rollers that weaved through some of the lakes in the area. It’s pretty and the roads are quiet and in good condition. At one point I came across a black lab in the road. He scared the crap out of me at first because I thought he was a black panther! Obviously, we have black panthers in Maine! Duh! Then his friend cross the street and for a split second I thought about stopping and playing with the doggies. Way more fun then a long ride.

Where I spent a lot of my time during high school and college winters..

Where I spent a lot of my time during high school and college winters..

The rest of the ride was rather uneventful. My neck was getting sore from being in aero. I got off to pee and stretch out at one point. I ate the rest of my bonk breaker at this point. It actually tasted good. Hmmm… Back on the bike and almost home. I knew I was going to run out of time, but I really wanted to hit at least 90 miles so I had to get a bit creative in my route. I did an out and back lap on Route 114 and then rode a couple of side roads around my house through a housing development to finally hit that magic even number of 90!

Off the bike and a quick 30 t-run! And then an ICE BATH!

Ice Bath!

Ice Bath!

And for comparison…

My 90 Mile Route on Saturday!

My 90 Mile Route on Saturday!

Lake Placid Bike Course! Yikes!

Lake Placid Bike Course! Yikes!

~ Happy Training!


Holiday Weekend Wrap-up


The weather for the holiday weekend wasn’t the greatest in Maine, but it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. At least we didn’t get 3 feet of snow like Lake Placid! Saturday was a bit of a wash-out. However, I had an extremely productive day and got a lot of things checked off of my to-do list. Some of those things included changes to this website! 🙂

The biggest part of my Saturday was my first official run in the past couple of weeks. As I mentioned yesterday that I was able to run/walk 3.2 miles relatively pain-free. The first mile was good, but I got a few aches and pains afterwards that caused me to take walk breaks. But… it was a huge improvement from the past couple of weeks so I took it!

Sunday’s weather was much better. Very little rain so I hit the road for my 2:20 ride. It was definitely early spring riding weather. I had to break out the gloves, toe warmers, and knee warmers for the ride and my toes were still frozen when I got home. The skies were overcast and it sprinkled a bit. There was definitely a bit of a headwind, but nothing compared to Monday’s ride! I decided to take one of my normal routes, since I knew it would have me ending around the 2:30 mark. However, with the wind I was a bit slower than predicted. Oh well!

Some interesting things I saw on my ride:

1. A most likely drunk redneck attempting to burnout in his crappy truck in the middle of Route 25 and failing. His drunk redneck friends were in the front yard laughing at him.

2. I saw long-haired, long-horned cows in a pasture. They made me giggle.

3. I saw multiple dead snakes on the side of the road, including a giant water snake. I squealed every time I saw a dead snake even though I knew they were dead.

Funny cows!

Funny cows!

Monday’s weather was a thousand times better! Although I still wore knee warmers, arm warmers, and toe warmers. I was supposed to do a 4-hour ride on Saturday, but decided that there was no way I could sit my ass down for 4-hours on the trainer. Thus, I moved my long ride to Monday so I could ride outside. It was a good decision. Minus the hellish headwind. The wind was pretty nasty. There were times when I was pushing a ton of watts and only moving about 10 miles per hour on the FLATS! It was mentally daunting at times and a few times I considered throwing in the towel. But, I kept moving forward.

I decided to ride up route 113 towards Fryeburg. My goal is to ride all the way to the New Hampshire border as my ride times progress over the next 6 weeks or so. The roads are pretty good for a majority of the way and the traffic is relatively low. The route is similar to Lake Placid although not as nearly as hilly. One of my coworkers lives in the area and told me about a really hilly route from Brownfield to Denmark that I can take to simulate some Lake Placid hills.

Welcome to Western Maine!

Welcome to Western Maine!

The ride went well. My Ironman fueling plan thus far is working well. I’ve been using Ironman Perform for my drink of choice because that’s what is served on the course. I’m not the biggest fan of it, but so far my tummy is handling it well. I’d rather not have to worry about carrying 10 bottles of fuel with me during the race. I was definitely well hydrated for this ride. I stopped twice to find a bush 🙂

I felt good off the bike so I decided to attempt my 25 minute T-run. I was hesitate at first, but wanted to give it a go. Originally I planned just to do 10 minutes. However, my knee felt great. Or as good as off-the-bike run could be. I focused on keeping my strides short and quick. It worked because I had no knee pain! I continued for the full 25 minutes. It was no where a speedy run, but I was a happy girl!

Happy Memorial Day!

Happy Memorial Day!

Overall, a good long weekend of training! I got a good 100 miles in over a 24 hours period. My tushy is a bit sore now. Welcome to Ironman training!

~ Happy Training! 

First Ride of the Season!

Yesterday, Azul and I embarked on our first outside ride of 2013! I decided to drive out to Cape Elizabeth and ride out there instead of my house because the roads are much wider and cleaner than the little country roads out in the boonies where I live. I bundled up in all my winter riding clothes including my booties and headed up for Prout’s Neck. The high was right around the mid-40s with a lovely headwind of 21 mph. I was supposed to ride 1:50, but ended up cutting it short at 1:30 due to the fact my feet were getting cold (I later finished the day off with a 20 min spin on the trainer). Since I had severe frostbite 2 years old on my foot I have to be careful with my feet to ensure I get to keep all 10 little piggies I currently have. Last thing I need is for one of them to get lost at the market and become bacon…

Azul is ready for her first ride of 2013!

Azul is ready for her first ride of 2013!

I was surprisingly confident hoping on my bike and pedaling away into the sunset! Ha! I didn’t expect much from my first outside ride. I just wanted to get my bearings back before I start concentrating on power-specific workouts outside. I spent most of the time riding avoiding potholes and sandy shoulders. Actually the roads out in the area weren’t bad. However, the roads by my house right now are a death trap. Please send the street sweeper out soon!

A view looking across to Scarborough Beach from Prout's Neck

A view looking across to Scarborough Beach from Prout’s Neck

My ride was rather uneventful. Hills were tough. My heart rate was higher than it should be. My cadence was lower than average. There was lots of other cyclists out there. My transition run sucked. My legs wouldn’t turn over. They felt like lead. But gosh darn it, it felt great to be outside! Spring is here! 🙂

My ride by the numbers:


Temperature: 46 degrees

Average wind speed: 21 mph

Total miles: 22.22 miles

Average cadence: 76 rpm (suckerfest!)

Power VI: 1.21 (total embarrassment! My goal this year is to work on my perfect VI. Looks like I have a lot of work to do.)

Number of snot rockets: 27

Number of loogies spit: 12

Number of cyclists seen out on the road: 37

Number of cyclist seen out on the road without a helmet: 6 (and boy did I want to slap them across the face for that! Wear your helmet!!)

~ Happy Training!

The Ups and Downs of January


Today marks the beginning of the 4th week of January and luckily January has 5 weeks this year. Okay, maybe I’m just excited that January is a 3 paycheck month at work. 🙂 So far January has had some ups and downs. Trying to balance Ironman base training plus 3-jobs and attempting to have a social life has been a bit tricky. But I’m managing, or at least trying to figure it all out by trial and error.


Let’s discuss the downs first:


Down#1: Sickness. Yup, most of you know (unless you live in a bubble and if you do may I please move in too?) that it is cold and flu season. And this year the flu has been the worst in a while. This does have a bit of an upswing for me in a way because the biotech company I work for produces a quality control for a flu assay that most hospitals have been using and it has been flying off the shelf this year! Yay for sick people! But, boo for me for catching a cold this past week. I’ve been a bit stressed this past week due to the weather changes (hot, cold, make up your damn mind Mother Nature!) and the fact we were just informed at work that we would be having a surprise FDA audit at work tomorrow! Thursday I had a half-way decent run on the treadmill followed by a quality strength training workout with a couple of the boys at the gym. That night I woke up sweating and then I would get the chills and then I felt nausea. I had a feeling that it may be the flu. SHIT! But, it just turned out to be a nasty little cold. Of course, Friday I had to work a 15-hour day too. Go figure. I ended up taking rest days both Friday and Saturday to kick the cold. I managed to survive and have a solid bike workout Sunday night. I still have a bit of the sniffles, but I’m starting to feel better already. (Knock on wood)

This how I felt Friday minus the whole birthday thing...

This how I felt Friday minus the whole birthday thing…


Down#2: I’m pretty sure that I have over-powered my trainer. Obviously I’m a total badass because of this! Ha! Either that or my Functional Threshold Power (FTP) dropped like 40-50 watts. Last year I did a power test on a computrainer (if you ever have a chance to ride one… take it! It’s such a glorious experience!) so I know where my FTP should be. I know it probably has gone down some due to my mini 3 month vacation from my bicycle this fall, but I know my fitness isn’t THAT bad… Earlier last week I was supposed to do intervals in my lowest gear, which would put me in my zone 4 power range. However, I maxed out in my upper zone 3 range in my lowest gear with the highest cadence I could maintain for the 2.5 minutes. Now, if I was on the road then I know I could have hit my zones. That’s why I’m thinking I need a new trainer. It doesn’t really surprise me because my trainer isn’t the best out there and it only cost me $50 on Craigslist three years ago so I’m thinking I got my moneys worth. I just don’t really want to go out and drop $400 for a new one. I was kind of hoping to save some money and eventually afford a computrainer. Who am I kidding, I have student loans to be pay off…


Down#3: Working a billion hours a week! I’ve always been pretty darn good at time management, but this month has definitely put my mad skills to the test and I must say, I think I give myself a C+ for effort. I’ve missed a few of my workouts and I’m not happy about it. I know my big hours don’t start till later in the spring, but I know I can manage the 8-9 hours a week of base training at the moment! The biggest problem I have is finding pool time that fits within my schedule. Of course, pool time is rather limited at the moment due to high school swim season, but I’m going to make it work! Tomorrow night I have clients till 7pm and then a large gap till the next one at 8:30 pm so I’m going to bring in my bike and trainer and face the wall for an hour to get my workout in! The past couple of weeks I have been really good about preparing food on Sunday afternoons for the week. That has certainly helped with time management and also I have lost about 1-1.5 pounds so my journey to race weight begins!


Down#4: Operation 6-pack has completely dropped off the planet the past couple of months, but have no fear she is back with a vengeance! Now that swim, bike, run has once again returned to the forefront of my life, strength training and yoga has taken a bit of the backseat, but I’m going to make them a priority again. Saturday mornings I’m going to teach a core fitness class at the gym, targeting core strength, mobility and flexibility and then at least 2-3 strength workouts a week varying from a quickie (15-minutes max) to 45-minutes with the boys.

winter one


Now for the ups:


Up#1: I got into the USAT Level 1 coaching course in NJ in April!! Yay! I’ve been trying to get into one of the triathlon coaching courses to become a certified coach, but I must say they are tough to get into. I tried last fall to get into the Providence course, but I was not quick enough and it sold out as I was typing in my credit card information. The USAT has since changed its application process so now it is an actual application you must submit to get into a course now making it more fair.

Coming April 2013!!

Coming April 2013!!


Up#2: I made my own bike thong! Instead of paying $25+ for a piece of cloth to cover up my bike to protect it from my buckets of sweat produced while on the trainer, I decided to rummaged through my mom’s old sewing room for supplies and make my own. It’s not the prettiest thing and doesn’t have the fancy remote holder, but it gets the job done and it’s FREE!

My masterpiece!

My masterpiece!


Up#3: I was feeling better yesterday so I took my dog with me to the gym while I worked with a client and then hit up Scarborough beach for a run. I didn’t run, but Reagan sure as hell did. Thank God she didn’t try to go swimming! She did enjoy chasing a few seagulls and get some energy out. Hopefully in the spring I can do some more beach running and actually take her running with me because she loves it.

Happy puppy!

Happy puppy!


Up#4: For the past couple of weeks I have been doing one of my strength workouts with another trainer at the gym and one of the other guys. I’ve been using them both as guinea pigs to try out some new exercises. Both of them are pretty fit, one more than the other, and my main goal is to make them puke. My fellow trainer doesn’t think I can, but he hasn’t since nothing yet. 🙂 Just wait till the snow melts and we can work out outside. (Insert evil laugh) I’ve been doing a circuit style workout involving my TRX and other mainly bodyweight exercises. It’s been effective thus far, but I don’t think any of us have been super sore from it so I need to step up my game this week!


Up#5: I’m writing a bunch of blog posts today to be posted in the next couple of weeks. I have this HUGE list of blog post ideas, but I just haven’t gotten them written down yet. Half of them are all written in my head, but of course, I just can’t just transfer the data from my head to my computer. Wouldn’t that be cool though if I could just hook a USB cable to my brain and transfer it to my computer? Ok, maybe I’m a little weird…

~ Happy Training!













My 2013 Goals


Yesterday’s post was all about how to set attainable goals. I’ve always been a very goal-oriented person. If I don’t have a goal then I get lazy. Setting goals is really how I got into triathlons. During th summer of 2009 I decided I wanted to be a cyclist on a whim. I would see cyclists ride their bikes by my house all the time and one day I decided that looked fun, plus cyclists seemed to be skinny (an added bonus). So I adventured out to a couple of local bike shops to look at bikes. Holy crap I was sticker shocked! I had no clue how expensive bicycles cost! My first bike was an entry-level road bike costing $900. Now, my tri bike costs more than my car! (Not that my car is worth much, except $1500 to fix it…)

So I started riding my bike, but I had no real goals. Then I heard about the Maine Tri for a Cure. Of course the 2009 race had passed by the time I heard about it so I decided 2010 would be the year I would become a triathlete. And the rest is history…

So here are my goals:

1. Become an Ironman! I don’t think I have to explain this one, but if I have to crawl my way to the finish line then I will!

2. Learn to piss on my bicycle! I just couldn’t get it done last year, but with 112 miles of cycling during Lake Placid then it needs to happen. I know I’m not racing my first Ironman for time or place, but I do have a time goal in mind so bathroom breaks will have to be limited unless necessary. Plus, I know you are all tired about hearing about it!

3. Increase my bike fitness and finally achieve the perfect VI so I can get an A from my coach! This past year I felt like my bike fitness lacked, but I really think I just got a reality check with my powermeter. However, I did learn how to ride my bicycle, aka spinning at a higher cadence in a lower gear and not grinding gears like I used to the previous year. My bike handling skills also need some improvement so I plan to work on those. Ideally, if I have some extra money then I would get a cross of mountain bike, but I’m not sure that’s going to happen any time soon. Also, I want to learn how to clean and tune my own bike (did you hear that Allspeed boys?!)

4. Focus on doing at least 10-15 minutes a day dedicated to mobility, soft tissue work, and core strength. Because I have issues with my hip and feet I need to focus on stretching out my tight calves and increase mobility in my hips and ankle. Foam rolling will also be a key player in keeping my muscles happy.

5. Continue learning and seeking out knowledge and advice from the leading health and fitness professionals so I can continue helping my clients and athletes reach their health and athletic goals. I absolutely love working as a personal trainer and coach. It’s a very rewarding experience.

6. Continue working on achieving a healthy body composition through proper nutrition and training.

So far 2013 has started off on a good foot, minus the fact that my Garmin Edge 800 cycling computer has died and won’t recharge. Hopefully the Garmin Customer Service people will have some good news for me because riding “naked” is no fun. I need my data!

~ Happy Training!

Tri for the Y Race Report

As previously mentioned, I decided to forgo my graduation ceremony this past Saturday in order to race the 2nd annual Tri for the Y in Freeport. It’s a small race and apparently smaller than the previous year. The race is a 325 yard pool swim, 13 mile bike, and a 5k run. Much of the bike course follows the Lobsterman bike course except you veer left up Pleasant hill instead of veering right onto Flying Point Rd. It was a beautiful day. Sunny and low 70s! The race started at 9am, but my swim wave didn’t start till 10am.

Normally I would have gotten my race packet the night before, but Friday was a bit hectic and I was driving all over the place so I decided to get it race morning. I’ve always been a bit of a nervous nellie race mornings. My worst fear is being late for a race! However, I wasn’t really nervous about the race as I was just anxious to get it over with. I chose to do this race as my season oper just as a run through for Mooseman and I’m glad I did. I definitely had some cobwebs to get rid of, especially involving my transitions, which were quite pitiful.

I went into the race with very high expectations for myself. I wanted to win my age group and place top 10 women overall. Was it out of the realm of possibility? No, I don’t think so. Was it a bit of a stretch? Yes. I severely underestimated the number of fast women runners, since that’s where I lost yet again! Race morning was different then all my other races previously because a) I picked up my race packet the day of the race, b) didn’t have a wetsuit with me so I kept thinking I was missing important items, and c) had a late start. My coach had me do a quick 10 minute warm-up on the bike, followed by another quick jog, and a few laps in the pool. My warm up was complete by 8:30am. I’m glad I took Azul for a quick ride because my front derailleur was acting up and having a hard time shifting from my small ring to the big one. I played around with it for a bit and got it working, but she was still making a few funny noises and start to make me nervous. There was bike support pre-race, but I’m not a fan of their shop and I only let a few select, trusted people touch my bike. I would have used them if I felt that something was really wrong with my bike though.

Since this race was a pool swim only 12 people could swim at a time. People were put into waves based on their projected time for completing a a 325 yard swim. I gave the time of 6 minutes knowing that I should in reality finish much closer to 5 minutes. When submitting our times we were informed that if we swam over our projected times then we were in danger of being pulled from the pool and thus I decided I’d rather be safe than sorry. The first wave started at 9am. My wave started at 10am.

The Swim

The first wave of swimmers were people who predicted to take 15 minutes to finish. I ended up watching most of the first wave because it was rather inspiring. A majority of the swimmers were either obese and/or over the age of 65. The best part was watching all their faces as they finished their swims. It was a huge accomplishment for many of them. Personally, for me finishing a 325 yd swim is not even a warm up. Last night I swam a tough 3200 yd swim and still could have handled more. It reminded me that sometimes not everyone’s goal is to win. Sometimes just finishing it enough!

In a nut shell, I had a horrible swim. I’m the type of swimmer that takes a while to warm up. I usually don’t feel good in a swim till after the 1000 yard mark. I’ve discovered that I am either a sprinter (and can sprint up to 150 yards good) or swim distance (0.5 to 1.2 mile) strong. I did a 200 yard warm up around 8:15 and then either sat around or walked around aimlessly till my 10am start (or in the bathroom with some gastro issues, urgh!). By this time I was cooled down. I shared a lane with a tall, first-time triathlete. He asked me before we started what time I aiming for. I told him around 5:15ish. Soon it was time to start. I took off and instantly knew this was going to be a bad swim. I couldn’t find my groove quickly. The guy kept crossing the black line and swimming into me. It was annoying, but I can deal with it since this is what happens in OWS. Just as soon as it was started, it was over. 325 yards goes quickly when you normally swim anywhere between 2500-3200 yards at a time during training. My average pace was 1:45 yd/min, which is absolutely horrible for me. I know a lot of women I have swam with would kill for that average, but I should have been more like a 1:25-1:30 yd/min. I’m still upset with myself about my swim performance. Grr..

Swim time: 5:40          Pace: 1:45 yd/min        Swim Overall Place: 26/123

The Bike

The bike course follows most of the beginning parts of the Lobsterman course. It’s a rolling hill course with a lovely climb up Pleasant Hill, around a neighborhood and back down and head back towards the Y. My coach told me to hammer it. My legs felt pretty good coming out of the swim. My transition time wasn’t bad. I didn’t have to worry about a wetsuit. However, my bike got stuck on one of the old-school road bikes in my rack so I had to untangle her to get her out. Once out of transition I put Azul in her big ring and went for it. I’ve been working on my cadence so I concentrated on spinning my legs compared to mashing the pedals. I passed one women who was doing exactly that and burning herself out. I yelled at her to just spin her legs, but I have no clue if she even heard me or just said “screw you lady” under her breathe. She never passed me. I was only passed by a couple of people on the course. I passed a few of course too. The course was pretty empty due to the small size of the race. I averaged 18.3mph on the bike. I was really hoping to be closer to 19.5mph, which indicated to me that I’m not exactly where I want and feel I should be bike fitness wise. However, I did have a few good things occur during my ride: a) I pushed it on the downhill parts and stayed in aero position without wanting to cry or piss myself, and b) I cornered in aero position on several occasions again without wanting to cry or piss myself. Azul kept making a weird “rubbing” noise during my ride so I was slightly worried that sometime might happen, but I was pretty confident that she would be fine. At one point a boat with boat trailer pulled out as I was descending a hill near the boat yard and made me a bit nervous due to the fact he was hugging the white line, but I survived!

Bike Time: 42:42       Pace: 18.3 mph         Bike Overall Place: 30/123

The Run

My transition from bike to run was dreadfully horrible and this is clearly where I lost third place. Bike went into the rack no problem. Bike shoes off and running shoes on, no problem. Garmin watch on, big problem. I was stupid and couldn’t get my watch on and stood there for about a good 45 seconds trying to latch my watch on my wrist. STUPID MISTAKE! Should have grabbed the watch and run. The only watch that matters is the official time clock! Grr… legs felt great coming out of T2! I quickly was able to find my pace. My garmin was telling me I was running about my 5k pace, but I felt like I was running sooo slow. I saw bike shop boy out on the course and he yelled at me to run faster. Typical. I just kept moving forward. The first aid station came after mile 1. I grabbed some water and ran through the station. I was able to throw a few drops down my throat, half of it up my nose, and then the rest over my head. It was starting to get a bit hot on the course. Then came the hill. It was a gradual incline for about 0.25 mile, turn around, and then back down. I passed a few people on the hill and was passed by a couple fast running men. I passed at least one girl in my age group! I was starting to slow at this point due to the climb, but I made sure to push it on the downhill to make up some time. Then it was a right hand turn down a small incline to the turn around and then up a slight incline and about a mile to go to the finish. I passed a few people here, but I was starting to slow a bit, but still sub-9:00/mile according to the Garmin. Once I could see the finish I picked up my speed to finish strong. I had a very good run, but I do believe that I could (and should have) pushed it more. And, the awesome announcer guy called me Catherine. Sorry buddy, not quite!

Run Time: 27:24       Pace: 9:08/mile         Run Overall Place: 46/123

Total Time: 1:19:43    Overall Place: 35/123   Women Place: 16/80   AG (W20-29): 4/12

Was it a bad race? No. But I’m still disappointed. I realized several things from the race though:

  • Pool races are really not great for me due to the fact I need more time to warm up for swimming. Will I do another? Most likely. It was fun.
  • Don’t dick around in transition! Grab the watch and run!
  • I don’t like not knowing who was in my age group. In most triathlons you start your swim wave in your age group. In a pool swim you usually don’t due to the swim times. I had no clue who was in my age group really even though we all had our ages on our legs. I’m very competitive so I need a target to really bring out my inner speed demon!
  • My run has become much stronger and hiring a coach was the best decision I have made in regards to all my training.
  • I’m still not happy with my bike fitness at the moment but I know it will come and I will be a much stronger and more efficient rider. Two good things about my bike leg occured: I pushed it hard on the downhills and also cornered in aero position!

Mooseman is in 10 days. I got my race plan from my coach earlier this week and got strangely excited about it. Race season has officially begun!

Happy Training!