Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Been awhile!

Life got in the way there for a bit...but it was for the greater good...and while super...super...super busy it was all for an amazing event in the end. So that was good.

Now I have to deal with the reality that my kettlebell gym closed at the beginning of Oct...but I have discovered an awesome Kettlbell program that I could do at my YMCA since I have a few kettlebells there. Or i've even toyed with buying my own so that people stop STARING at me when I swing kettlebells around. Or walking in my way. Um...HELLO...swinging a 25-35 pound object around. Sometimes above my head. Please don't walk in my swinging path. The one thing I can't really get around are the staring when I'm deadlifting/squating/pressing. I just need a new gym and while there are more 'lifting centric' gyms in this area...they have their own host of weirdness.

So...i have an adventure I think brewing. I'm excited and do now have plans and time to be back in this area of bloggy land so maybe i will be around a bit more these days.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

And the final numbers...

Max lifts on lifts I cared about:
220lbs Deadlift
145lbs Front Squat
and what impressed me the most this week...
175lbs (rock bottom...ATG)Back Squat...a 36 pound improvement over Sept 08! And to think that I was down 2 pounds of lean body mass over April 2009 when I started this lifting plan due to being sick this spring.

Gym is still closing next week, but I have about 4 different possible plans that might come to fruition, I'll know more by next Friday.

One thing I have learned about triathlon is that I like training plans and I like training goals. But right now...I don't really like triathlon. So...i'm swimming in a sea of 'what's next'? The thing that has been hard is that finding a road race or a triathlon or something that is semi related to swim-bike-run is EASY. Finding something that looks interesting to me that doesn't include 'endurance' training or is related to swimming biking or running is hard to find...I'm trying to sort through that right now.

I'm kind of going through a "What is out there?" moment. Could I pick up a new sport? If I ever find the time in the next few weeks I'm going to try out Netball. Funny sport similar to ultimate frisbee with a ball...but funnily enough is British in origin, yet I never played it in the UK or NZ when I lived there. Of course that would so be ME to pick that game up now that I don't live there...it was like the fact I picked up the american sport of Ultimate frisbee when I lived in the UK. I never do things the 'normal' way...do i?

But over the past few days a few thoughts have come to mind and I've started researching a 'what's next'...and it is not related to swim-bike-run in any form. I'm kind of excited about it...but it will be awhile til I declare it. ;-)

til then...it's finally summer here. Just in time for fall.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Weight max week and what next?

This week is our max test week. I'm a big nerd and have been really excited about it. Why? Because I want to know how I have improved over my Sept 08 max from when I was doing Crossfit. At that time my Deadlift max was 210# and my backsquat was 139#. Monday I broke my DL max @220#. I still think there was a little more in me, but my nervous system was a little fried. And today I front squatted 145#. I don't have a max really for that because I have never tried to figure it out. I also was throwing around 20kg for cleans and jerks with the kettlebell which sort of surprised me a little bit. So that was fun. I also had a good laugh over my instructor telling me to do my general kettlebell swings with heavier weights because I tend to cheat and just 'muscle' the lighter weights (16kg and below)on my swings. I found this comment pretty funny.

Last week I broke my backsquat PR with 145# x 3 reps so Friday when I test my backsquat it will be fun to see what I can do beyond 145#.

So what's next? I have some random things I might be interested in working towards, but the verdict is out on what's next. I had flirted with doing Carlsbad half marathon in January...and then my affection grew a little cold. It'll probably sell out before I can make a decision. Some days I like to run, and some days I don't.

But the major bummer of what is next is...my gym is closing. :-( They were only open in this small format for a short while and due to some administrative issues the whole thing is being closed...like at the end of next week! I'm sad. I'm cooking up some options for myself, but at the end of the day...i'm sad. I was so happy there. I enjoy my instructor. I'm learning lots and finally starting to feel healthy again. I'm still far from the level of fitness I would like to get to...but it is such a difference from this spring! Something will work out. And until then...sniff.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

7 weeks down and living in week 8

I think some days everyone wonders about their blog...why they do it? Who really cares? Why do other people read it? And one thing I sometimes wonder is why is blogging any better than me just writing all this down in my own journal somewhere squirreled away where no one has to read my blathering. I don't know...maybe because at least saying things 'outloud' with a random audience whether or not they say anything in return feels better than just talking to myself. And considering how often I talk to myself...maybe it just signals a way that I'm getting out of my thinking head and onto 'paper'. Been thinking about that a lot. What purpose does this serve? But strangely even though I thought blogging was the weirdest thing ever back when I started it...and the two people who got me into this crazy endeavor have stopped blogging...I enjoy it. So somehow it helps me process.

Lately things have been...um...chaos. I'm SUPER busy while concurrently being emotionally on two ends of the spectrum which makes things a bit hard as well as hard to stay focused, but that is life at times. Kettlebell class is going great. Next week marks the end of our first set of programs...which means next week = max lift testing. I'm pretty excited...strangely...but still excited.

Today I am pretty sure I PRd my front squat...granted, I used to RARELY front squat so I don't think that really counts. I don't know my front squat max...but I did squat 130lbs today and it was HEAVY. I almost pschyed myself out before hand until I thought: what's the worst that will happen? You have to dump it?

At my gym it's acceptable to dump weight on the floor so it really wasn't a big deal. AND i didn't have to. It was mighty heavy though. Deadlifts came in this week at 180...but we have been progressing SLOOOOOWLY. I should have pushed it awhile back. The last few weeks I've just been loading them up. Sept 2008 max DL = 215...goal next week...to meet or break that. I think I should be able to break that, but I do have a weaker grip now than I did then.

Backsquat...2008 max 140...donno. Friday is backsquat day and due to some scheduling stuff I actually haven't backsquated in over 2 weeks. So who knows.

But I must go to bed now...because I'm going now on off days and doing body weight stuff/active recovery which is super fun. But has reminded me that I need to continue to work on pushups. I did 75 Bosu ball pushups (not consecutively...but 5x15 within a big set of other stuff)...and I'm a bit sore today. I also did some wacky medicine ball pushups where you hold the medicine ball with one hand, lift your opposite leg (or same leg if you wish) and do a push up. I think those were around 3x3. Then there were the fun ones I could only hold where you put your foot on a medicine ball, lift the other one and then do a push up. I just held that since I started to fall on my face every time I tried to do those. But pretty fun. Sometimes I feel like we are attempting circus tricks on some of this body weight stuff, but hey it's pretty cool.

Monday, September 06, 2010

6 weeks down

Another week in the books for kettlebell training and another week where I'm feeling 'normal'. Energy is good and all is well and almost to the point where this spring feels like a dream. Was I really that sick? Did that really happen? It's weird to first have your body completely freak out on you, have doctors not know what is *really* wrong with you, then start to figure out how to fix yourself and then get to a point where you are healthy and full of energy where you can take care of your life and everything around you and it almost feels like it was all a dream. That is actually dangerous.

But as I feel better physically some rough stuff has taken place the past week or so. Since I'm not much of an over-sharer in my 'offline' life...that's about all I'll say on my blog. But I managed to get out of town this weekend, see some old friends from NZ, and get away and gain a bit of perspective on life. It's been good all around.

I did discover this weekend that I might actually sign up for a half marathon in January and even with the intent of really training for it. Goal time and everything. That thought came out of the blue after seeing a bunch of half marathoners at Disneyland this weekend. So we will see how long that thought lasts. I'm barely getting past that feeling of "why do people run this sucks" feeling of being out of shape. I have had a few brief moments of runners 'bliss' or that feeling where your legs are just under you and the breathing and legs just feel together and linked. But they have been fleeting thoughts...but I do know that they come about more regularly with more running. So...we will see. I'm still giving myself space on the topic of endurance sports.

Life is getting really busy with some chaos with a job this fall...and it is good. I'm excited.

So...definitely round a bend. Just don't know what this road has to offer me at the moment. Guess we will see.

Monday, August 30, 2010

5 weeks down

Ok...at some point I will stop counting, but maybe after the 3 month mark. So 5 weeks of kettlebells and powerlifting/strength and I feel...well pretty darn strong. I actually made it through my 3x10 sets of burpees this morning and didn't have to stop to rest quite so much. Oye the first week I had to do those it was like do 3 burpees, stop, do 3 more...stop...finish the final four and want to lie on the floor. Now I can get through the full set of 10...even if I start to falter a little at the end I'm still able to do all 10. So yes, i'm getting my fitness back which is soooooo nice. Interesting observation was with hanging leg raises today...where I hang on some rings and lift my legs up...4 weeks ago...could barely do 5. Today..12 wasn't so hard (ok a little at the end...but these are not sissy exercises).

And good new...Fatigue is still at bay...so I really do think I"m on the mend. And I'm more and more thinking Magnesium did have something to do with it. Been running a bit...still pretty laborious...how did we ever get into running? Those first few weeks of running...SUCK. But I did have a fun end of a run the other day where my friend and i pushed it at the end of the run and it felt good. I'm almost to venturing past the 40 minute mark. I know...sounds so short.

And I wont' be doing the half mary i was contemplating in November. Too much chaos in Oct to deal with. One insanity at a time please. Maybe carlsbad half in January? Donno.

But all in all its good. Checked my body comp this weekend, body fat is down, % bf is down and I have regained the lean body mass I lost this spring which is also a good thing. Side comment on body composition though...who says you can't spot reduce? Seriously...I wouldn't believe it except if you have the YEARS of trends with how your body loses weight...what you are doing *does* influence where you lose more fat. I'm so not kidding. The first time I went in to see my nutritionist over 2 years ago we would notice I would lose weight from some parts faster than others and she would comment: are you doing more XYZ? And I would blow off the comment as I didn't believe in the idea that doing something that used a section of your body would cause more fat to disproportionately leave that area. I just figured 'that's my genetics'.

Ok...i'm now super suspicious. Last time I was working with her back from 2007-spring 2009...i tended to equally (and these two spots I would lose the most body fat from)...lose from my quads and my waist. This time? My quads alone DROPPED a disproportionally greater amount than ANYWHERE else. She asked: are you doing lots of squats?

Well...yes I am...but why would that cause me to drop MORE fat from my quads?

Last time I was working with her I was doing swim-bike-run plus some crossfit. This time i'm doing kettlbells/powerlifting, running and vinyasa yoga. It's kind of bizarre. So maybe you *can* do some spot reduction. But I think if you that is all you do you won't lose anything...you do lose fat all over the body, but it does come off not at the same rate from the same places. That's kinda weird too.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Three weeks down

Three weeks down with my strength/conditioning kettlebell class and all is going well with the class. I love the class. To the point that I am sad on the days I don't get to go and excited on the days that I do...Waking up at 5am doesn't even bother me and that is SAYIN' something considering I am no early bird. It's interesting because the program is periodized and so we have had 3 heavy weeks progressively getting heavier weights and then decreasing number of sets...so for example the first three weeks for my deadlifts looked like this: 5x3, 4x3, 3x3. Next week it is 2x3, but also a decrease in weight on all lifts. I had gotten up to 135 on the DL last week which is progress...i was doing 3x5 @ 145-150lbs in January. So the strength is coming back. I probably could pull that right now, but I wanted to start conservative considering I'm getting back onto the training wagon at the moment. But good news...energy is high and spirits are too.

It was interesting last week because I was in a discussion about a random supplement that is making its way into the trimarket...what's new there? But it got me thinking about how I feel like I have 'rounded the bend' almost fully on a few different spectrums in the last 3 weeks which had me thinking: is it just that I can train again? Taking a fair amount of starchy carbs out of my diet unless prepping or recovering from training (similar to Paleo for Athletes), or is it the fact that I decided to see if some Mg supplementation might be beneficial?? I am a data point of one, but I might be leaning toward that I may have been Mg deficient. I have been reading a lot of both endurance athletes as well as the impact Mg has on mood and it makes me wonder...its not too out of the realm of possibility more out of the fact that I have come up short on so many other things this spring that I tend to wonder what else I might be missing. I eat a pretty heathy well rounded diet, but things have pointed to that I don't efficiently absorb the nutrients in food. Either way, I'll probably take it more out of insurance than anything. After this spring's issues and how so much has surfaced with deficiencies...i'm pro-multivitamin and pro-multimineral now.

On the endurance front I am considering a half marathon in November, more out of the fact it would be a way on my off training days to continue to burn high amounts of calories. And while I truly believe calorie in- calorie out = weight change, I can't help but be annoyed that while I have been extremely diligent tracking calories and exercise in training peaks...and I have been running a deficit very consistently for over 2 weeks...the scale has decided not to be a pal and reflect this hard work. It actually is saying i'm heavier at the moment. In two weeks I will know better with a bf test...the pants do fit a little less snug, so I have to go with that. I have been known to lose fat as quickly as I gain lean body mass...and considering I've been doing more weights/week than I ever have over the past few years, who knows how my body will freak out. Granted one goal was to gain back the 2 pounds of lean body mass I had lost since last year, I think I'm there.

More fun to come I'm sure.


Monday, August 02, 2010

One week down

Week one of kettlebells/powerlifting has gone really well. I'm sore. I knew I would be. But not too sore and the type of soreness is not related to how I used to get sore when all the overtraining syndrome started...so maybe I'm heading out of the woods. I still need naps it seems on the weekends and I will be honest...if I could nap around 3pm in the afternoon I would do it. That would have been good today, but I will make this short and head to bed early.

But the best thing is that it just feeeeeels good. So many months of barely getting my HR up and finally being able to be out of breath during a workout just gives that great rush of endorphin high that is so wonderful. I heart endorphins. In all honesty I'm more surprised that I'm not MORE sore. I mean, don't get me wrong...friday's squat fest (a zillion and two lateral squats combined with a bunch of back squats made me barely able to move around this weekend) put me in a sorry state, but really not a severe degree. Soon enough I will be moving beyond that initial 'owchie i haven't lifted in a while soreness' to the different type of soreness that comes with just moving new heavier weights. The later hurts a little less.

But most of all...i'm enjoying it and having fun. And really that is the most important.

But again it has me thinking...will I *ever* come back to triathlon? I know I don't have to. And I won't until I think i will love the multisport schedule, but it is just so weird to think that I may not come back. I am having a day where I'm really not sure if I ever will return. But then again...tomorrow I might think differently. I would say I'm about 50:50 split at the moment...so it depends on when you catch me.

In the meantime...I'm learning to master that kettlebell swing.

Monday, July 26, 2010

On an edge...but it's all good

That fear sits in the back of my brain as I start embarking on training. And in all honesty...it's hard to manage because it isn't like fear of a race: Can I do this? Can I do the training? Will I get through the race? Will I over heat? ect. Those sorts of fears I somehow am able to 'think' through them and manage them. This fear of the bottom falling out without warning, there is no 'crisis' management since my only option if the bottom falls out is starting back at square one and waiting until the body decides it is healthy enough to deal with the situation.

Reintroducing 'training', 'exercise', whatever you want to call it right now is one of those weird things at the moment. I'm gun shy to be honest. I'm scared of doing too much, but i HAVE to do something. I was telling a friend that my main motivation to lose the 10 pounds I have gained this spring has little do to with 'oh i need to lose weight because of XYZ reason' and more to do with the economics of the situation and the fact i hate shopping: I don't want to buy new pants.

So...i need some exercise that is a little bit more aerobic than yoga. Granted vinysa yoga does make you sweat a bit and gets the heart rate up...but not quite like other things. But my kettlebell class officially began this week...and that will definitely get the HR up. And I have been biking on the weekends a bit. But here was the situation this weekend. I rode 35 miles, they were hilly but I did not go out and smash myself. Then I came home and need an hour and a half nap. That is kind of frustrating. I had done the same route the week before and no napping was needed. So it is that sneaky thoughts of doubt that creep in and then say: are you doing too much? Are you trying to train too much right now? What if your body gives up again like it did back in March?

So managing the sneaky thoughts is much harder than I would have thought. But alas...one must manage them. But I have to say getting back into something with some intensity where i'm sweating and HR is high feels SOOOOOOO good. Ok, the being sore that it hurts to cough isn't super fun, but I miss the feeling post intensity exercise. I am sure in a week or so I won't be so sore anymore.

Granted on Tuesday I was most annoyed that my soreness was all due to body weight exercises, evil burpees, pushups, one legged pistol squats. Seriously? I didn't even need a barbell to make myself hurt like this? Well one thing I do miss are my deltoids so I guess those will come back in a hurry.

So it is good...i'm enjoying this and starting to think about more exercise on my off days (tues-thurs-sunday), but I'm also trying to make sure my body is ok and recovering well this first week. I'm also starting to look into other sports. Maybe venture back to Ultimate Frisbee? Or stand up paddleboarding looks kind of fun too. New adventures!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Overtraining Syndrome Part 1

I had a comment a few days ago from Ruby Dragon asking about my experience with overtraining syndrome (OTS) since it seems she is going through the same thing. There is information out on the web, but not a lot of accounts of what happens during overtraining syndrome. This is a long post and many may or may not find it useful...but hopefully it might help someone who is going through it. OTS is hard because it just levels you after being so active.


Last year in May I got a little over trained. Classic HR too high when it shouldn't be and too low when it should be high. I remember being on a run where I couldn't keep my HR over 120bpm...and I was running at a good clip. And I was tired. And I was cranky. And I was in the middle of training for Vineman 70.3 and we realized I need to back off. So I did for a little bit. Few extra days of rest. Fluids. Good healthy eating and I was right as rain. All was well. That is sorta the 'normal' situation when us triathletes get a 'little' overtrained. But it does happen...the super chronic form of OTS

  • Washed-out feeling, tired, drained, lack of energy
  • Mild leg soreness, general aches and pains
  • Pain in muscles and joints
  • Sudden drop in performance
  • Insomnia
  • Headaches
  • Decreased immunity (increased number of colds, and sore throats)
  • Decrease in training capacity / intensity
  • Moodiness and irritability
  • Depression
  • Loss of enthusiasm for the sport
  • Decreased appetite
  • Increased incidence of injuries.
  • A compulsive need to exercise
But most people don't really talk about it. Even doctors. They don't really know what it is or why it happens. Hormone imbalance? Cortisol too high or something like that? No one knows. Some people their training will put them into a state of OTS because the body has just had ENOUGH. They have been pushing without enough eating/fluids or recovery to support the training. In my case I think it was a combination of SUPER high stress (ie cortisol) for a NUMBER of years combined with poor digestion which resulted in some nutritional deficiencies (folic acid, ferrtin, Vit D...) mix in 8-12 hours of consistent training and the body will say enough at some point.

Last season I noticed I don't recover well from training (probably due to the bad digestion thing)...but then in january it just went down hill. These things are actually hard to notice until the bottom just falls out. It's that whole fable that if you were to throw a frog into boiling hot water he would jump out, but if you put him in a pot of water and slowly heat the water you can boil the frog without him noticing it or jumping out. OTS I think is a culmination of things and it is hard to detect. Sneaky, sneaky. Especially with us type A's who think we need to push the envelope in every training session and that we can go go go and when we are utterly exhausted we just rest a wee little bit, maybe one nap and all is right again.

The reality is that consistently cutting corners on the nutrition, sleep, too much caffine, too much refined carbs, will lead to an erosion of health and one day you will wake up to find yourself at a bottom of a canyon. Filling that back up...takes time and patience and a lot of sleep.


Here was my progression. I found this in my training comments. This is why taking notes for training can be important. I kept a weekly journal for my coach at the time and so this isn't how i felt ALL week, just on one or two particular days within a week.


Week of Jan 18th Slept in a long time. Very 'heavy' when I woke up. Slightly dehydrated so I ate breakfast and drank a bit of fluids hoping my body would respond so i could run ok. Warmed up for 10 minutes, got through my running drills and was utterly exhausted. Ended up walking back to the car and not running any more.”


Week Feb 1st “body wasn't feeling much more than an aerobic pace, but speed was very encouraging for going aerobic/not really feeling it pace.”


Week of Feb 8th I was swimming like a rock still after the weekend when I felt like lead all weekend.


Week of Feb 15th Sunday: woke up feeling sick...not a cold, just upset stomach, low energy.

...did see the stress 'show up' on Tuesday when I was running and running REALLY SLOW. Last week stress + less sleep + poor nutrition the night before = slow.


Week of Feb 22nd woke up EXHAUSTED...got a 4 mile run mixed with some walking in, but was supposed to do 75mins but couldn't drag myself out of bed early enough due to my exhuastion. My level of exhuastion on Sunday was actually concerning.


I may have a few clues to my lack of recovery that i'm trying to square away but this has been happening more frequently than it ever did before. For some reason


I'm a bit frustrated at the moment because it seems that when my energy levels are good...things are starting to 'click' and come together but I have been having an equally hard time recovering from some of my long rides but it doesn't feel like my muscles are pushed and are exhausted...i am just tired. Like i might wake up from 8-9 hours of sleep but i feel exhuasted and drained. I am sure it is a combination of many things... work, travel and training... But the weird part is one day I have a ton of energy and the next i won't. Sunday i felt miserable all day long, tired, headachy, horrible. But this morning I woke up with a ton of energy bouncing off the walls. I seem to be either full of energy or not and it is pretty extreme on both sides.


Week of March 1st...Raced this week and it was sort of the beginning of the end

had major energy melt down last week. I'm sure everything else that is going on in my life with work and travel isn't helping...but i think there is possibly something else going on. Underlyingly i feel like i have a lot of energy...my body is not tired from training...i'm just exhusted in general. If that makes sense. I have the energy underlyingly to do everything, but i am battling with a desire to sleep all the time.


Week of March 8th

Considering how I felt all week I hope the tests show something conclusive because I was dragging and extremely exhausted and generally feeling rotten, much worse than the week before.


I did half of my TT on Wed only to be so completely exhausted on Thursday (even with 9 hours of sleep) that I had to come home early and take a nap.


Week of March 29th

This week was marginal. Traveling on top of this fatigue i think really wore me out. In some aspects I am feeling better. My biggest problem with all this fatigue is that it is a HUGE paradigm shift for me to have to focus on not having a go-go-go mentality. Which is hard for me. I'm doing ok...and trying to be ok with it all...but it's not mentally easy either.


Week of April 5th First D.N.S

Sunday: I woke up, got ready, ate and was getting ready to pack my car when I could tell that if I raced i was going to dig myself a HUGE hole that would take a LONG time to get out of. It was a really hard decision not to race this morning, but after I went back to bed and woke up 4.5 hours later, still very tired, I knew I had made the right choice. I had wanted to come down and cheer everyone on, but was still really exhausted when I woke up.


April 12

Still pretty lethargic which makes me less motivated since it takes so much emotional energy to do much of anything


April 26th


sports medicine doctor thinks it is 'over-training syndrome' and I'm to check back with him in a month and keep my activity 'in check' in the meantime basically meaning if it makes me too tired it was too much.


still fatigued and pretty apathetic towards training most of the time still...but that seems to be a negative feedback loop of being fatigued and being frustrated that i'm tired and then just not wanting to do anything because it usually makes me pretty tired.


That night...Went to the ER...couldn't stop throwing up for no real reason at all. Took DAYS to recover from. Not really related to OTS, but showed how fragile my body was...it was just freaking out all the time.


May: The pit of despair.

Basically in May, I cancelled a lot of bike ride. I slept in a lot. I was unmotivated a lot. And I tried to just focus on other things a lot. I tried not to let the nagging thoughts of 'will I ever'...what if and all of that eat me alive. It was hard to tell people over and over: I just can't. My body just can't.


It hurt. Recovering from 2 hour bike rides required equally long naps. I wanted to sleep all the time. I probably still didn't sleep enough. More out of apathy than out of not doing it.


June

First bike ride that didn’t wipe me out

Consistency starting to come back...key...not to push.



July

Kettlebell classes have started and 3 weeks of learning.

Trying not to drink coffee anymore.

Realized coffee basically makes me 'high'...talk about a norepinephirine rush. No wonder my poor adreanals hate me.


Next week...first week of some actual consistent higher heart rates.


So while I am slowly on the mend, I also know I'm not totally out of the woods either. I'll admit it. I'm gun shy at the moment. I'm about to start kettle bell training in more 'full effect' and have a nagging worry that I'll stop recovering again. But...i have to try.


I say this as 'part 1'...as I think i have some other thoughts on the topic. But..well...i'm tired. Maybe later.



Saturday, July 17, 2010

Discoveries

As I have been talking about in my past few posts, i'm finally finding something I enjoy again and being active is about finding things you enjoy. Someone was asking me about what do I 'do' to be fit and active because they wanted to take some 'tips' from me. My first answer to that question always is: what do YOU enjoy doing? Being fit and active needs to come from enjoyment. Sure there are times when I'm in a training plan and I'm not enjoying how I'm tired or that a particular workout is killing me, but underneath it I enjoy it. Hence why for awhile I am putting multisport training away. I know many people claim they don't like to do anything active, but I think some of that 'aversion' is born out of fear. Fear of learning something new. Fear of worrying what other people will think. Fear of being bad at something new. We all like the comfort of the familiar, but sometimes we all need to branch out and grow and try to figure out what it is we like. I usually feel like i'm making a total ass out of myself when I'm first learning something and in truth... typically I AM...so I've learned to laugh at myself too. But I have found that with practice that awkwardness and self conscienceness does goes away...i promise.

After my foray into cross fit I discovered: I like lifting heavy weights. Give me a heavy deadlift and I am a happy camper. I think this kettlebell thing I'm doing now which will also incorporate some powerlifting and olympic lifting in a setting that is designed more to what I need as an athlete might be the perfect fit for me. Although I'm sure the first few weeks might be a lot of complaining about how sore I am. After all I'm really out of shape right now.

And as of late my biggest concern with my lack of activities has been more around my pants becoming too snug. So I made a date with my sports nutritionist and got my %bf tested. The good news, compared to March of 2009, my lean body mass has only gone down 2lbs. Not bad considering how horrible a spring and how inactive I have been (and for me putting on LBS is easy...so I actually wouldn't be surprised to see those 2lbs back on me pretty quickly). I know I had lost some strength, although this is a comparison from over a year ago. I kinda wish I knew what my LBM was in January...although that might depress me. So let's pretend that Jan 2010 I wasn't that much different fitness levels than March 2010. Granted I was, but I think if I knew I had lost much more LBS i'd be depressed so let's just leave them as close to being equal. And then the truth of the %bf. Looks like i have 10 pounds to drop to get to March 2009 levels. So let's start there.

My nutritionist and I discussed finding activities I might like and that it doesn't have to be swim bike run. It's nice to be reminded I SHOULDN'T swim bike run unless I WANT to. I know this, but it makes my aversion to running and swimming of late almost a relief. Wanna know a secret: i still pack my running stuff and swimming stuff hoping that if the urge to run or swim overcomes me I am ready. I guess i'm not ready yet. ;-) And yes running with friends and swimming with friends I will go and do...but it's being able to enjoy it on my own that I am waiting to come back to me. I still believe that one day it will. I ran 2 miles on my own a few weeks ago, and every part of that run was wonderful...but it was born out of a desire to run and I'm still waiting for it to return. Until then I will try to be 'ready'.

I know there are times to push through some things, but right now is not one of those times. I know that if I am too harsh on myself or force my self into any swim-bike-run that I'm not keen to do the long term consequence of the short term calorie burn isn't a good trade off. But I'm not going to lie when I say I might push a wee little bit and try one swim and one short run this week. There are also realities in life like those 10 pounds that I really would like to go away so that my jeans aren't so snug.

Another discovery I made today was white flour. I know it's not good for you. I know stay away from it. I know...I know...but sometimes we don't always do what we know is best for ourselves. I had some pancakes at lunch...and an hour and a half later I could barely keep my eyes open. A solid 1.5 hour nap later I'm finally awake. And the crazy part? I have dramatically cut back on coffee to the point that a cup of coffee makes me super alert these days and I EVEN had a cup of coffee during my drowsy period before I succumbed to the nap and it did NOTHING. So...bye bye pancakes. I heart you, but you don't heart me. I might actually try this experiment with wheat pancakes and see if it is wheat causing the power nap desire. I did have the pancakes with protein and some fat to try to slow the insulin spiking, but apparently not enough.

So...lots of discoveries made today a bit of a rambling post, but I think right now I'm trying to sort through some stuff in my head that I haven't been able to for the past few months. If I have the energy I hope to be here a bit more in the future.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Power

Power = is the rate at which work is performed

Work = is the amount of energy transferred by a force acting through a distance. W = F d

Force = m(ass) a(cceleration)

So...if you have a heavy mass, accelerate it quickly you have a high force. If you then move that object a specific distance you have how much work is done and power is related to the time of that work performed. So...if you lift a heavy object and accelerate it quickly over a great distance in a short amount of time there is a large amount of power generated.

Returning to doing some weight lifting, particularly olympic weight lifting which a given lift you have to have large amounts of power makes me think of physics a lot. I'm weird like that.

Recently I am discovering that for whatever strange reason, i'm quite physically strong for a woman. Even in my out of shape and undertrained state I still have a reasonable about of strength and it more gets me thinking where it comes from and why does it stick around. Also makes me think about the reality that I can gain strength rather quickly from lifting as well as pretty rapidly gain lean body mass from minimal lifting. I know it's all about genetics, but sometimes I wonder how far away from the norm I really am. People like to talk about women and how they don't want to lift because they are afraid of gaining too much muscle. Most weight lifting coaches laugh at this 'concern' and say 'women won't bulk up'...bla, bla, bla. I'm not really concerned about this as much as much as this is just reality for me. Last spring, not even in the fittest condition I have been in over the past year and change, I more realized that compared to other women my height I have as much lean body mass as I am supposed to weigh according to height/weight charts. I don't really bother with those and more am concerned about %bf...but it does make me pause a bit. I mean...that's a bit nuts if you think about it.

Today we started playing with olympic lifts. I like those for the most part but I will admit they can be scary because there is quite a lot of 'throwing' the bar and having to 'get under it'. But with practice they can be fun. Today we did practice some snatches, but the 45 pound bar intimidated me more out of 'feel 'than I think I can do strength wise. I'd like to wait until we have a lighter bar to play with before trying this.




I am looking forward to start really training in just over a week. Right now we are just learning lifts. But it brings me to questions like: what are my goals? Where do I want to go with this? I don't really know. Being 'strong' is just such an ambiguous thing. Even "doing one pull up" is a bit random and ambiguous. It's not like with triathlon where one thinks: I want to do this race. It is just different to contemplate.

So time will tell.

But best thing: i am enjoying it a lot...and really that is all that matters.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Like a kid at Christmas

Well my excitement has shown to be justified. I went to my strength training thing 3 times this week and every time...i was soooooo wicked excited to go. Yesterday it was almost funny because as the time approached about 9pm all i could think was: you HAVE to go to bed NOW because you are getting up at 5am. In the end I got to bed at 10pm, but then proceeded to wake up a few times during the night because i was SO FREAKIN EXCITED and didn't want to miss my alarm. Yes...I'm a nerd...and this is news?

And so far the excitement is super justifiable. I leave my classes excited about the next one. And that is HUGE for me these days. I mean excited about something active?? Phew...maybe aliens didn't take my body after all!

We have been working on a few things, standard lifts like the deadlift and squat as well as power lift, jerk press. And then today was all about body weight. Pushups...pullups...one legged pistol squats. There are a whole range of them all. I think what is cool about the pushups is that we will be doing a strength progression to get us to a point of doing one armed pushups. Now that's pretty awesome. Granted with all the push up stuff...i can tell my arms are going to be sore tomorrow. Hopefully not too bad.

I did try to run or swim this week...and really didn't get far. Sigh. I think triathlon will be on super hold for awhile. I'm ok with that, but it's sorta weird to realize that I need to find other ways to become healthy and fit that are not triathlon. It's a new chapter...and while I say it's a new chapter it doesn't mean that triathlon won't ever be revisited, but i'm pretty sure i'm not going to flirt with it (much) for at LEAST the next 6 months. The 'plan' at the moment is to work on my strength and flexibility so that if I decide to ever come back to triathlon I will have a good base to work from. I will get some runs in and hopefully not completely lose my feel for the water, but at the same time I'm not going to push that anymore. This spring I had more than one occasion where I would just SIT in the car and negotiate about swimming for almost 45 minutes. I remember thinking: if i had just not negotiated I would be DONE by now. When every workout becomes a negotiation it becomes a reality check into whether or not an activity is a good thing to be doing.

I still love reading about everyone's ventures. And there is still a part of me who enjoys the races and such, but I have come to realize that maybe right now...i really don't need to be triathlete-rific. And that's ok.

So...i have created 'schedules' that range from ONLY doing my strength stuff + something on the weekend to mixing into it all some swim-bike-run in reasonable quantities. Basically I have told myself that my basic commitment per week will be about 5 hours (3 weights + 2 hours on the weekend...bike riding or whatever)...but I have created bigger schedules (like i outlined in the last blog) about doing yoga and some swim-bike-run on the off days. Here is my thought: if all that happens great...but if not...my first commitment is to my strength classes.

And yes...i'm quite excited about all of this when I realized today that it was definitely the weekend and while i am excited about the weekend...i also was a little sad when I realized it would be two whole days before I went back to class. I guess i'll survive. :-)

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Excited that I'm excited

I do hope that I've made a turn. It seems I might have. Fingers crossed. Toes crossed...all that can be crossed is crossed. So what's the turn? I actually think i might be on the mend. Seriously. But...oh...yea...i'm also seriously out of shape.

And in all honesty...it's kinda funny. I went and was throwing a frisbee around the beach for awhile last week...now keep in mind I used to actually play ultimate frisbee...competitively. (I know, many people don't know about the secret frisbee leagues and how competitive a game like Ultimate can get...but it can get ugly.) So I was actually throw-throwing the disc around and lunging like one does when they do throw the disc...not like one is just tossing the disc on the beach kind of throwing...but *throwing* the disc. Anyway...what's my point? Felt a wee little bit of soreness the next day in my throwing arm and opposite pivoting leg. So not impressed.

So...what's the excitement about? I'm starting a strength conditioning thing on Monday! It's almost like private strength training without the cost of it. Small classes with planned out training. I'm excited. And I"m excited to be excited.

Of course me being...me...has scheduled myself to death and it looks a bit like this:

Monday: Strength AM Yoga-PM
Tuesday: either bike to work or run or swim
Wed: Same and Monday
Thursday: Same as Tuesday
Friday Same as Monday and Wed.

The bike to work thing...well i don't live quite close enough to bike from my house so that it isn't a HUGE trek everyday, but there is a park-n-ride that is about 10 miles from my work...so i'm going to start trying to actually bike to work for part. I'm excited.

And yes...i'm excited that i'm excited because that is the biggest thing to me.

That and making sure those jeans of mine don't stop fitting. Oye vey...yes it is time.

I have also realized that really my life in blog land will still be sparse until late Oct. It's just the truth. Too much going on. So...i'll try to keep posting occasionally. I am still reading blogs, I just fail to comment on them. Blame Google Reader. Wrong email logged in. Anyway...that's just an excuse I need to stop having.

Until next time...

Saturday, June 05, 2010

I am a triathlete*

Here is an interesting experiment...i just got an ipad...so let's see how this turns out. I had some trouble with a different blogging situation with my ipad so maybe this will work. Granted I can't find how to actually link to anything at the moment, so we will see.

The point of this post has nothing to do with the ipad though. It's that weird dilemma I am in right now with my 'training' or just in general because I am...well...not training. I'm doing a whole lotta yoga...but that's about it. I didn't really write about it, but about 6 weeks ago I had a sports med doctor give me the 'overtraining syndrome' diagnosis...which doesn't make any sense in the grand scope of things. At the same time I have spent a lot of time this spring educating the medical community in my life about how to treat me.

For some reason i get a little irked when I am TELLING my doctor what is wrong with me. Donno...i'm a doctor but not THAT kind. I mean...seriously. Why did my insurance just pay you 200 dollars for me to both educate you as well as tell me what I thought you were going to tell me: a whole lotta BS or a crap diagnosis of a way to say: we don't know what the eff is wrong with you. Sorry.

My other diagnosis is around fluid in my ears and allergies. That...after too many blood tests to count and even a chest x-ray in there for fun. To say I'm less than impressed with doctors at the moment would be a gross understatement.

Truly this whole 'overtraining syndrome' diagnosis/allergies is its own post in itself. So back to regularly scheduled blog post.

I was talking to someone last week in yoga about how stiff in general I am and I said something weird like: um...cuz i'm a triathlete. In my head I'm thinking really? I feel like it needs an asterisk next to it explaining: yea i'm not 100% healthy right now...no i'm not training for anything...yea nothing is on the books. I don't really feel like a triathlete right now. I see people post pictures of triathlons and talk about their up and coming race and I sit and reflect on my season and well I just sold my SDIT bib and have no other triathlons on the book for the season. In all honesty I don't know how to *feel* about it.

Some people think that as long as you have done one triathlon for the season then you can call yourself a triathlete. Well...i've done ONE and then DNS another one. So I've *paid* for 2...actually if you count how little I got back from IMCDA i've paid mostly for 3 and oh yea, and I have 50% of Wildflower waiting for me for next year too...so as far as my pocket book cares I am a triathlete but this is sort of weird territory for the moment.

Last weekend I went for a GREAT bike ride with Lisa where for once I didn't feel like for once I was going to die on a 2 hour bike ride. And I had a reasonable week, but then I woke up on Friday feeling ROTTEN. Two steps forward...one step back it seems like at the moment.

"Well life is both a major and a minor key" --Travis

The funny thing about this whole 'overtraining syndrome' is that there is a huge mental component to it where I have a bad case of the 'i don't wannas'. So the reality is I have to just...wait. Wait until I WANT the schedule and the training. I don't love yoga...see my previous posts on that one, but I'm learning to just *do* it and fortunately I have a friend who does keep me reasonably accountable to doing it so that is helpful.

But most of all i get the feeling this summer will be a lot about just discovering new stuff about myself and myself as an athlete. What does it mean to not be a triathlete but do other things? How do I stay 'healthy' when I'm not trying to train 10 hours a week? Will I ever find that shift in myself again where I will thrive on the schedule like I used to? Will my body ever come back to the middle where i will stop worrying about it freaking out on me over nothing? (like me getting sick this week was possibly related to eating pizza.) I feel like I have an overly sensitive system at the moment and well...i have no choice but to listen because when I don't I end up very unhappy.

So...learning to have patience and just *be*. Easy to say and some days easy to do. This week was filled with days that were not easy. Hopefully next week will be easier to embrace.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

I.HATE.YOGA

Really...i do. Ok...HATE might be a strong word. Ok...i've learned to like it in my training days as it does help keep me out of PT. But as a prime exercise modality. NOT my favorite. AT. ALL!

But...we suck it up when we have to. And I"m having to suck it up right now. I'm having to let go of a training season I was all excited about. I'm having to let go of training...period. I'm having to let. go. Not easy for a dopamine dominate/type A/overachiever like me to do. And yet, so much of my body is just sorta freaking out right now. My mental focus has sucked the past 2 months. THIS is concerning. My drive for general things in life (not including triathlon) is just not there. I used to joke in grad school that I lost my 5th gear because all the stress wore it out...and that I tend to live my life in 5th gear...just goooooooooo. But I'm now down to a few more gears and left mainly with first and second gear. It's a little freaky to be honest. I miss my old self, but I've been consulted that I dug myself into a big hole and now I have to figure out how to get myself out of it. And it involves a lot of...nothing.

sigh

I've taken up yoga seriously. Ok. i'm not sure I can say 'seriously' when i' just signed up and SAID that's what i was going to do. I've only gone to this particular studio 1x. The goal is 6-7 times a week for the next month. and then do the same the month after...and...

ugh

Fortunately I have a yogi friend who won't let me get away with being slackster about it or talking trash about it either.

Really all this lack of training has just made me Ms Cranky Pants. She's not very much fun in my opinion. I've already had to apologize for her recently.

And for all of those interested...what's the root cause? NO ONE KNOWS. I've been given the ambigous BS answer of 'overtraining syndrome'. In reality it probably is a malabsorption issue that the training then exacerbated. Funny...when you don't get enough vitamins you don't get what you need to function properly.

so...until later

namaste

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

SuperSeal: D.N.S

Things are...uh...interesting around here at the moment. Had my first D.N.S. for a race (did not start) this weekend. Well I guess I will have a few others this season too, Wildflower and Ironman CDA, but I actually have planned not to race those races at this point...Super Seal I had planned to race until 6am that morning.

Let me back up. Pretty much since the week before Desert Triathlon I have dealt with unexplained fatigue. Still waiting on 3 more tests this week but so far all i have been told is that i have low-ish ferritin levels and low-ish Vit D levels (not anemic, thyroid is completely normal). Nothing that would explain drawn out fatigue for now...uh...two months. And this is: i'm unmotivated to get out of bed type of fatigue/unmotiviated to get my work done type of fatigue. I stopped worry about my training and just started worrying about my job. And I do have to say things have gotten a little better with a few supplements to help boost motivation levels...but the fatigue has stayed with me.

On Saturday I made it to packet pickup just before they closed and was able to catch up with fellow TNS peep who was racing the next day too. We chatted and said our 'see ya laters' and parted ways. I FULLY expected to race the next day. But...i did have a nagging thought of: is this really that smart?

I had a friend of mine email me earlier in the week and say: really...you are going to race because you don't want to take a hit on the race entry? That doesn't sound like the smart girl you are.

But i ignored that thought.

And then it gnawed at me.

And then I woke up race morning and thought about that thought and realized: hmmmm if I have to dig myself out of another massive fatigue hole like I had to after Desert tri (two FULL weeks of barely getting out of bed...and now just general mailase) so..not...worth it. So after getting up, eating, packing and gettting ready to leave the house I decided the trade off would just be not worth it. Spending another who knows how long being extremely fatigued was so not worth it when i'm finally at the level of *just* that constant moderately fatigued. (i'm being sarcastic...it's pretty ridiculous actually...18 mile bike ride 2 weeks ago almost left me in bed for the afternoon)...so i decided i would then just take a short nap and then go spectate for the race.

FOUR AND A HALF HOURS LATER...i groggily woke up and could barely pull myself together. No spectating for me. I was a bit of a disaster on Sunday but considering how LONG i slept after I went back to sleep I KNOW i made the right decision and i have NO regrets (aside from wasting money).

So for right now i'm dealing with the fact I want to exercise more but I don't really know how much is too much. I have a holistic nutritionist trying to help me through this as well as my doctor although my nutritionist is scaring me to death at the moment and has all kinds of not too fun thoughts of what might be going on. But for the moment i'm waiting for a cortisol test, mono test and a lupus test. If nothing comes back conclusive...i'm totally out of ideas.

In the meantime I have cleared my plate of triathlon. I take long walks along the beach now. I ride my bike as much as it will let me before i get fatigued. I do run a little here and there and try to do minimal training. The goals these days is: stay active. A little yoga, a little weight lifting...and a whole lotta: whatever keeps you being active is good enough.

Well it is mid april and i hate to say it...but it seems my season is over for a little while. That's kinda weird to realize. But the great part: some wonderful beaches and wonderful walks and sunsets and making new friends and enjoying what I can and mainly not focusing on what I can't do, but what I still can.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

errr..yea...


A LOT of stuff is Long over due...particularly: one race report from Desert Tri. Here is the quick version of that one: IT.WAS.COLD...IT WAS WET...but hey I stayed upright and even got to meet a newly minted pro! Charisa and I have managed to be at 4+ events, but never have managed to actually meet. So this was a long overdue hello.

The race itself was pretty uneventful aside from the rain that started coming down when I got to t2 and never let up. My swim...was awesome. I took 13 seconds/100y off of my Malibu swim time and 18 seconds/100y off of my Vineman 70.3 pace. Those ridiculous drills all winter have paid off HUGE. The bike went ok considering i was FREEZING. Avg pace decent and I really just cared about staying upright and not getting too cold. The run...i couldn't feel my feet for the first loop which was tough and my pace showed. A bit slower than I had hoped, but reasonable for me ~8:30mpm.

Overall it was an alright race. I came into somewhat...fatigued and was happy that I did well with it. The problem...that fatigue has gone from 'somewhat fatigue' to 6 weeks later I can barely get out of bed kind of fatigue. The week after the race was horrendous and now i'm ok except post any sort of effort the next day I am peeling myself off the floor. It's not good.

And I've seen the doctor and they bled me...good news: i'm pretty darn healthy. not so good news: um...maybe lowish ferritin levels? So my doctor: we are going to refer you to a sports medicine doctor. Maybe you are over trained?

um...ok...no...i'm not over trained. And considering how much non-training I have done in the past month I am REALLY not over trained and now i don't get to see the doctor for another month. By that point I'll be as non-overtrained as possible and i'm not thinking this is going away any time soon.

really...miss optimist is at it again. Actually it might be more like 'miss realist'.

Actually miss optimist is wondering if her triathlon season is actually more likely to be over in exactly 12 days...post Super Seal.

Wildflower Long Course is off the table due to a few things...mainly though: i can't get past this fatigue.

I'm not doing Ironman (see the last post)

Here's the thing...my normal doctor doesn't know what's wrong. My nutritionist is starting to suspect I put myself on the brink of adrenal exhaustion during graduate school and the fact I do endurance activities is exacerbating an underlying issue. The problem with this suspicion is...what IS adrenal exhaustion?

Here is where mainstream medicine frustrates me. With the adrenals...you are either healthy or you have Addision's disease where the adrenals have completely stopped working. I don't have that...all my blood work looks great. But this other possibility is just so...vague and well not well studied. But that being said it was through this holistic pathway that we found out that some health concerns that have plagued me in the past 7 years are due to a simple folic acid/b12 issue. No one in mainstream medicine took the time to test me for that...which quite simply makes me pretty mad and skeptical.

But while my skeptic is fighting with this one thing I do know: i'm tired and no one can tell me why. My training in the past 5 weeks has wrecked havoc on my body after any effort and more importantly...PAST all of this triathlon stuff...i'm way more worried about the fact I can barely peel myself out of bed for work. Screw triathlon...that's a hobby. I have bigger fish to fry in this whole issue.

And this is where i almost wish I had a tangible injury. THAT at least you can go to the PT and it doesn't impact your daily life...it might make training a drag for awhile, but THIS...ohhhh..THIS is no good. No answers.

So...what does this mean? I don't know. But I took that picture above on my slow bike ride on Saturday to remind me: I'm still a lucky girl.

Or the whale watching excursion where I got to see a bajillion dolphins and share a beautiful day with a friend...I'm a lucky girl.

Or spending the afternoon shopping and hanging out with a good friend of mine I've known since elementary school and now lives in San Diego...I'm a lucky girl.

I have a lot of things that are really great in my life right now. I am a bit frustrated with my current state of training and the reality my body might be asking me to: slow down. Time will tell.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

ironman...we are breaking up (for the time being)

Ironman...it is with great sadness that I have to say: we are breaking up. I know you will always be there and I will revisit this relationship in the future, but for the time being I have to tell you good-bye. Upon embarking upon this demanding relationship I knew there would be hurdles and sacrifices and when I pushed the button for IMCDA last year I embraced your demanding needs and accepted the high attention you would require. I had sequestered the time in my life necessary for you. As with many new relationships it is easy to give that time up when everything is new and shiny.

And currently I still feel like our relationship is a little 'new and shiny' but ironman...you do not play well with others it seems. You are an awfully jealous partner and can cause one's anxiety to run high when the demands of the training are high. And to be honest, I knew this going into the relationship. I accepted your needs and was willing to meet them.

But then...then...then...yes my heart did wander. I could not help it. An opportunity of a lifetime that is my dream came along...but in truth my heart did not wander...my heart was always with my dream, just laying dormant until that dream became a tangible reality. I somehow thought that since on paper it was possible to share my time between you and my dream I could do it. But alas the sleep you need, you were not getting, the attention you need you were not getting, and then there was that pesky job of mine sending me all over the place that you did not like.

sigh

So...ironman...for the time being we are breaking up...and I am sad. But I know it is the right decision. Until I can give you the time that you deserve, you can find me in cahoots with your less demanding relatives half-iron and oly. And while it is with great sadness that we are breaking up, I know you will always be there. And don't be surprised if in the future I start flirting with you again...when my time and heart are not so divided. I do not know if that will be next year or down the road. Much depends upon the opportunity with the dream and what happens this year with that.

Granted it does mean that the velodrome and I can be much closer friends. I was going to have to break up with the velodrome for 2 months...for YOU!! Don't you see the kind of sacrifice i was willing to give you??? But i know...i know...working 60+ hours a week and traveling and my heart and focus being with my dream doesn't really mix with what you need. Until that time in the future...good bye ironman.

Friday, February 26, 2010

15 seconds

I need more time...about 4 more hours per day please. Does any one know where I can find that? I'm having a massive scheduling issue in my life...mainly stemming from the fact that i am a)trying to do this ironman thingy at the moment b)have a job that this year likes to stress me out and make me travel a lot which = lots of work c)have another job that i love and want to pour my time into but it doesn't pay the bills d)friends/family/appointments I can't seem to keep up with. I feel like i'm falling off the back of a treadmill at the moment. One of my biggest faults? I have this ridiculous mindset that somewhere in my little brain I do believe I can do it all. It doesn't mean I *should* do everything...but as a friend of mine put it the other week: you love to be at your wits end tearing your hear out about to lose your mind. You love that space.

sigh

I'm trying to balance stuff...we will see how that turns out.

But today was a weird day. I just got back from TX for work last night and was EXHAUSTED. Pushed my AM swim to afterwork and had decided to leave work a little early to get the swim in but mid way through the day that just turned into: leave work early to power nap. I knew i'd sink like a rock if i attempted to swim so i went home and took a little nap.

FINALLY got my sorry state out of bed and headed to the pool. I was tired and kept telling myself: just be less tired please? Apparently you can't will yourself to be less tired...i tried real hard though. But I hopped in the pool and somehow found the concentration to focus on the drills at hand.

head down...arms wide...left hand entry....quick arm recovery...tight core...rotate...rotate...left hand (what the heck is that arm doing?)... arm recovery...arm recovery...arm recovery

It wasn't anything to write about...so why am i writing about it? I don't know. But at the end of the set i have a 4x100 cool down. K...just relax...cool down but keep it easy just focus on form with out the paddles and buoy.

TEN...TWELVE...FIFTEEN SECONDS!

That was the amount of time off of an 'easy' 100 from what I was swiming last year. FIFTEEN SECONDS! Last year an easy cool down hundred was typically 2:00/100yards. Today...1:45/100y

not.even.sprinting.

That's CRAZY in my book...but totally lovin in.

And NEXT week...we get to test and see if these little improvements pay off when it counts. Desert Tri....bring it on!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A lot of things running around up there

I've got a lot on my mind these days...and not a lot of time. I do find that I am more and more using this blog as a place to just get stuff flushed out of my little pea brain...but it still keeps running around. sigh

One exciting endeavor appears that i have will have the term 'writer' involved in part of one of my job descriptions. I know i sorta blather on with this here blog with fragments and run on sentences...but partly due to my over thinking personality I need some place where I can just go ON...where if people don't like my blathering or disjointed writing style they will just use that little 'x' in the corner and move on. I think I need that right now.But i'm kinda excited about this other prospect and have been enjoying this recently.

What is strange is I think i've always wanted to 'be' a writer but didn't really know what that meant. I went to some writing camps as a kid...but that being said even though I was a pretty good student in high school and college, english writing class was typically the class would get B's in. Give me a chemistry equation and i'd be golden...but literary analysis...um...not so much. I think it is the fact that I'm not the type of writer that will ever write the great american novel, but I have come to realize I do have a few writing skills. I just usually need to get through at least 1 or 2 or 10 drafts first. Any writers out there (and i know there are a few)...any words of wisdom are appreciated. So I will soon get to flex those skills in a more focused environment and see what happens. I'm actually a little nervous, but also really excited.

I think i need a miracle right now. i mean...who doesn't...but either I need some extra hours in the day or something dramatic needs to happen on the job front. So i'm currently praying for a miracle.

Folic acid is good stuff...and if you don't have enough of it...you won't feel very good. Trust me on this.

oh...i had another six degrees of separation or chance encounter or whatever you want to call it. This is the FIFTH time in San Diego i have run into someone I know from my past and the THIRD time it is someone from my undergrad...i went to a TINY undergrad near Seattle...not here. This.is.so.weird.

Training...i'm SUPER excited about Desert tri in 2.5 weeks. I'm currently doing the 'number' crunch in my head of benchmarks, goals, reach goals...ect. So...i'm going to put them down right now just to put them down. These are 'reach' goals...none of them may happen, one of them might happen...i don't know right now. Swim: sub 32, Bike sub 1:18 (i actually don't have a true grasp on this one) and Run for 6 miles (it's not a 10k...it's only 6 miles)...sub 48mins. Things are coming together, but everything seems to be coming ALL together and I don't know what that really means...or if it is just in my head? Or it IS coming together? My coach did tell me that he has seen many improvements in my training...i just don't know how that translates into times. I'm not so tied up in my times...i'm actually really excited to see how it DOES come together. But anyway...it's all pretty awesome.

ohhhh and i think something i'm going to get that will help...a tiny bit...with time: race wheels and race tires. Yes...i'm going to not race on my big ol FATTY tires. I kinda find them funny but i SOOOOOOOOO don't want to change a tire in a race...but well...rolling resistance...i might as well have added glue to my tires their rolling resistance is so fantastic. As in...they suck for racing. I've had mechanics laugh at me when they find out that I race in them. Sure...train heavy...but race at least a *little* lighter. There still is part of me that goes: but if i have to change a tire...its not worth the possible time 'savings'...there is no savings in that. I can change a tire in less than 5 mins flat, but that's still a lot of time. So...advice on tires/wheels? I don't want rims any larger than zipp 404's but i am exploring other companies besides zip.

That's enough out of me for awhile. Ohhh totally disjointed and all of that, but i'm just trying to write more and practice writing even if it is possible jibberish mainly because then i can hone my skills where they need to be honed and worked on over in that other space.

until i have something else to blather on about...

oh...but i do...next up...trigger point therapy stuff...or as i have been calling it around these parts: the box of evil.

until next time...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Not too bad!

San Diguito Half Marathon...unofficial time...2:02:30

Official response to the day...great training run.

Official feeling about the race...it went pretty well.

Ways to make it better next year?
1) Show up an hour and a half before the race starts. Even though it is a stand alone running race and you don't have to set anything up...being stuck in traffic for 40 minutes from the off ramp to the race is one sure fire way to miss the official start.

2) Don't take the Lomas Santa Fe exit....use a map and take the exit before. That alone would have gotten me to the the start line with enough time to spare to use the bathroom.

3)hill training...yes..those bumpy things that go up and down....they are good if you have plans to do a hilly half marathon.

4)mileage...mileage would be good. While I have been doing that ironman training thingy...my coach hasn't built my volume excessively in the running due to my hip. We have only begun a phase where I will start seeing more appreciative volume...so while I have the endurance to complete a half marathon... running further than 8 miles leading up to the race might have been helpful...but this was a training run and really it was more of a 'test' in my book. And in my book...i totally passed.

5)Shoes with less miles on them feel better in a race especially on a hilly course.

There were a few hiccups...missed the offical start...figured that since i wasn't trying to PR and i'm not in the market for any bling during this life time...stopping early on to use the bathroom that I didn't have a chance to do since I was STUCK IN TRAFFIC...i just decided to be comfortable and stop early. I'm glad i did. Sometimes you just gotta race your own race.

A few weeks ago I actually told my coach that maybe i should skip this race. He told me...no...just do the race and use it as a training run. I aint going to lie...there was a little grumbling on my side of things under my breath. But I decided just to see how things are going. Last week I discovered i'm in 10K PR shape...like possibly-beat- my-10K-PR-from-november-by-something-like-5-minute- kind of shape. I didn't know how that would translate into a hilly half marathon that I haven't been training volume or hills for. Much to my surprise...not too bad.

And then i did a super crazy thing...and went to Sea World for the rest of the day. Oye vey!! I think my legs offically hate me at the moment...but hey...that's how it goes.