Saturday, March 31, 2012

Just Call Me "Mom" Today

I totally blew off Friday's workout.

Why?

For the love of my youngest son, who I lovingly refer to here, as "Stinky Cheese."

This post is totally NOT about bikes...or running...or swimming...or my IM. It is about me being a woman and a mom, and loving my son...and I really love this kid.

That isn't a "Finish-line Face." I beat his ass there by an hour + though!
If you have been following my blog long enough, you may have caught on to the fact that my family and I went through a pretty huge and devastating change at the end of last summer. I have alluded to this, but never have really been that specific.

I guess now is as good a time as any; 130 miles from the starting line, and just after we had crossed the Canadian boarder, my significant other publicly ended our relationship, and "requested" that I move out. I would like to say that I have handled this in the most stellar of manners, but truth be told, what I actually did was get drunk and sign up for my very first triathlon: IRONMAN Lake Stevens. (and now I am just living my life in continual denial...) *sigh*

Where we live now is really small in comparison to where we were.  Stinky Cheese's room in particular is very tiny; his bed takes up the whole room! I have been wanting to buy him a loft bed forever, and today...I did! (Hurray for tax returns! Hurray for IKEA!) It really is the coolest bed too! It is a loft bed, so under the bed, there is a huge desk and a shelf! Now that he will be going to junior high next year, he will really need this extra space for studying and to stay organized. I also wanted to do something special for him because I wasn't the only one who went though a major loss this year... I want him to know how very special he is; that he special enough to own something new and "expensive." (I think as the younger child, he tends to not get as much new stuff in general...but I suppose we all have our own "birth-order cross" to bear. lol)

We spent the entire evening assembling the thing together. I loved every moment. He did too. I have always loved being a mom.

I don't regret missing a stupid run. Pfft. NOTHING beats quality time spent with my sons. :)

I told him he had to smile like the guy in the picture, or he wasn't following the instructions properly.



Friday, March 30, 2012

Well, This IS Seattle After All!

One of my favorite stickers.

It rained so hard on my ride home today, I almost had to ditch my bike and swim home.

You know who wasn't freezing cold though?? ME! Why you ask? Because of my bitchin' Assos Michael Jackson cycling jacket! Jeez I love that coat! When I wear it, I have to jump over stuff...just cause I can! 1.0 says it makes me cocky. Moi?? *bats eyelashes innocently*

"Anytime I see one of those speed signs while I'm riding, I try to break the law!!!" ~ 1.0

Actually, it was kinda funny yesterday.. I was riding to work, and there is this one spot on the trail where there is this little bridge I have to cross. On either end of the bridge, there is a sucky seam that always jars my brain if I don't at least lift my rear end. I decided that my bada** self, wearing my Michael Jackson coat, was going to jump the seam. Just as I did, my messenger bag shifted, and in that millisecond that I was airborne, disaster almost happened. First off, I almost ate it...big, but luckily with my cat-like reflexes I managed to save the day! Unfortunately for the old lady who was on the other end of the bridge at the time...well, I think I might have given her a mini-stroke, (mostly because it was loud, not because I was going to hit her.)

Have I mentioned that I like my MJ coat?

My dog "Six," recently ate the zipper off my other cycling coat...and 4 of my bras...and my beanie hat. I'm not sure if my heart could handle it if she ate the MJ coat...

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Want It Wednesday ~ Speedfill Hydration System

The Speedfill Hydration System is an "Ooo-La-La" as far as I'm concerned, and I definitely WANT IT

I have been concerned about hydration during the bike leg. I am not super coordinated when it comes to groping around to find my water bottles in their cages, when I am in "hell on wheels mode." I'll actually put off drinking sometimes, just because I am so competitive, that I don't even want someone to pass me on a ride like RSVP or Chilly Hilly! I know, I need professional help.

Obviously hydration is absolutely vital during Ironman, and I can't be an idiot. I won't be using aero bars because of the constant "up and downers," so a bar-mounted bottle isn't going to work. Even though this will likely cost in the neighborhood of $100 USD, *gulp* this puppy looks like it is my best bet. Good thing garage sale season is upon us! There is usually all sorts of things laying around the house that can make extra money for you, if you want it bad enough! :D

I guess this concludes my first Want It Wednesday! A huge THANK YOU to Jez Andrews for including me in the W.i.W. fun! PLEASE check out his bike blog by clicking this link: FOLLOWING THE CHAINLINE




Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Meet Hal

Saturday's sunset was too pretty not to share.
After a lot of agonizing and, let's face it, obsessing, I believe I have tweaked my training schedule just the way I want it. I also believe that I have addressed, and hopefully alleviated, some of the mental roadblocks I was struggling with in regards to my running; which in turn has certainly reduced a great deal of anxiety it seemed to be causing.

So far, I have been using an adapted version of Don Fink's training schedule as outlined in his book beIRONfit. I say "adapted" because his book is meant to prepare you for a full IM, whereas I am only doing a half. Because I had liked the book so much, and because it came so highly recommended by Tri-Guru, I had thought that I could just tinker around with the distance changes myself.

With that said, my little harebrained scheme was to keep the training on the bike pretty much the same, (if not increase it) because I plan on doing other riding events/centuries or double centuries, over the summer, and I need to be prepared for them as well. The swimming hasn't been something I have been terribly concerned about, nor put a whole lot of time fretting over; I could go the full distance from week one. Running on the other hand, I knew would need a lot of tweaking, (since I have no intentions of running any distances over 13.1 miles in 2012! lol)

BUT to be totally honest...the "freedom" I have given myself, makes it all so ambiguous... It just provides me the opportunity to make excuses, or get distracted. Not good.

I am a creature of habit. I like routines and schedules. I love being spontaneous...on days that I have nothing scheduled on; which we all know just means that I scheduled a "Wild Card Day," (I don't really call them that.) Just so you know, I don't think that I am like this (or perhaps as bad) during the "off-season." :D

Actually, I have been very proud of myself this past 15 weeks! In regards to my tight-assedness, inflexibility, and fit throwing, I think that I have shown marked improvement! For instance, I have not flipped out about a missed workout once, (I don't think, but there has been whining). Also, I have been flexible with management, and behaved rationally, when my work hours and days were changed twice! I also went through the trauma of smashing my beloved Cervelo RS! Other than sobbing on the phone with the insurance adjuster like a lunatic, I think I handled that one pretty well!

Anyways, blah blah blah, (jeez, what the hell is this blog even about again??) Oh, right... So me pulling my running schedule out of my ass wasn't working for me, and it was causing this chica a major hitch in her get-a-long. It took me awhile, but a couple weeks ago it dawned on me that there was just too much unknown going on. I have never done a TRI; never done a transition, never bought a tri-suit, never swam in a wetsuit, never worried about drafting rules, never competed in an event this long and hard, can I do it?, will I make the cut-offs?, will there be milfoil that touches my feet?, will I give a crap??, am I going to humiliate myself in front of everyone I know?.... I think you get the picture.

I can't eliminate all of these unknowns, or even most of them for that matter. I can read, talk to people with experience, do a trial tri, and train train train! Another thing I can do is incorporate something familiar into my training schedule; something tried and tested. That brings me to Hal.

"Hal Higdon has contributed to Runner's World for longer than any other writer, an article by him having appeared in that publication's second issue in 1966. Author of 36 books, including a novel, Marathon, and the best-selling Marathon: The Ultimate Training Guide, now in its 4th edition. He ran eight times in the Olympic Trials and won four world masters championships. He has served as training consultant for the Chicago Marathon and Chicago Area Runners Association and also answers questions on his Virtual Training Bulletin Board, offering interactive training programs through TrainingPeaks and apps through Bluefin." ~excerpt from his bio. Click here to read Hal's full bio. 

So what does Hal have to do with me, you ask? Plenty! He wrote the training schedule I used when I trained for my first half marathon! If it worked before, it should work again, right?! *breathing sigh of relief* All I had to do was marry the two training schedules, so that Hal's runs fit in with Don's bricks. It took me a good part of the evening, but I managed it, and I am very pleased with my results! I already feel far less overwhelmed, and that must have translated to my run tonight, because I ran an amazingly enjoyable 4.06 miles. Yippy!

I am trying a new thing... I made a new calendar widget so that I could post my training schedule for the week. It's kinda in "beta" at the moment, so we'll see if it stays or goes. I posted this week's schedule as I have it planned now. I don't know if I will add a note if something changes or is missed etc, or if I should just update it... I have to think and fiddle.

Well, I suppose I have rambled on long enough. Sorry 'bout that...a great run tends to leave me less sleepy than I would like at this hour. lol I hope this post makes sense... I don't feel like proof-reading... I swear, I haven't been drinking!! Runners high!! :)

Half Marathon Training Schedule: Novice 2
Week Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 Rest  3 m run   3 m run  3 m run   Rest   4 m run cross
2 Rest  3 m run  3 m pace  3 m run   Rest   5 m run cross
3 Rest  3 m run   4 m run  3 m run   Rest   6 m run cross
4 Rest  3 m run   4 m pace  3 m run   Rest   7 m run cross
5 Rest  3 m run   4 m run  3 m run   Rest   8 m run cross
6 Rest  3 m run   4 m pace  3 m run   Rest   5-K Race cross
7 Rest  3 m run   5 m run  3 m run   Rest   9 m run cross
8 Rest  3 m run   5 m pace  3 m run   Rest   10 m run cross
9 Rest  3 m run   5 m run  3 m run   Rest   10-K Race cross
10 Rest  3 m run   5 m pace  3 m run   Rest   11 m run cross
11 Rest  3 m run   5 m run  3 m run   Rest   12 m run cross
12 Rest  3 m run   2 m pace  2 m run   Rest   Rest Half Marathon

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Octobike?? Sweeeeet!!

Bitumen Battleground
By Chris Brunner


With the Tour Down Under about to get under way in Adelaide, inspired cyclists are taking to the roads in their hundreds, but the increased presence of cyclists on our roads is no cause for concern if you all just settle down and look at it this way...

To a motorist, cyclists are pests, and every January in Adelaide there’s a plague. The biggest cycling event in the southern hemisphere comes to town and everyone wants to be like Lance.

Motorists, beginning a new year of work or study, find themselves sharing the road with swarms of cyclists.

And they don’t like it.

Well just chill out.

From my perspective there are a few things we all can do to make sure the stress levels remain low, and no one gets killed.

I’m able to make unbiased comment because I’m a bikist.

By this I mean I’m not a cyclist, but I ride a bike.

Bikists are bicycle riding persons in no way connected to the cycling world.

A sure way to spot a bikist is by his clothes.

Unlike a cyclist, lycra-clad and ridiculous looking, the bikist rides his two-wheeled trekking machine with dignity, or at least normal looking clothes.

His general attire is completely unsuitable for the act of riding a bike.

His thongs betray a freshly lacerated big toe, and his pant leg is torn from constantly getting caught in the chain.

Bikists are the middle ground, the neutral territory between the two extreme worlds of cycling and motoring.

Bikists are the key to bridging the chasm of misunderstanding on our roads.

To begin with bikists are, for the most part, solitary creatures.

You will not find them on the road blocking an entire lane or more with their incessant inter-bike chatter.

This is a major point of contention between cyclists and motorists.

Cyclists feel well within their rights to bunch, or ride two-abreast (which is legal); especially in the early morning and even more so on Sundays.

Bikists side with motorists on this one, the road is for travelling on, not for social networking.

Can you picture two motorists in their Honda’s, windows rolled down, having a casual chat at 40km’s per hour?

It’s illegal to even hang your arm out the window let alone discuss which days of the week you can’t use your garden hose.

If you want to ride together get a tandem bike, or better still, an octobike.
I’ve seen these contraptions in Europe.

I MUST find one of these and ride it w/ 7 of my closest friends! ~C.G.
Eight riders sit in a circle facing each other each pedalling for the  collective good, while the octobike travels in the direction dictated by the lead cyclist who controls the steering.

Most of the cyclists can’t even see where they are going.

With these wonderful inventions you can all cycle and chat facing each other, while only taking up the space of less than two bicycles riding side by side. Seven of you can even sip Latt├ęs while the eighth takes care of the handle bars. First problem solved.

Motorists are especially frustrated by cyclists riding on the winding roads of the Adelaide Hills.

Bikists, by their very nature, avoid anything resembling an incline, not to mention large hills and small mountains.

As a bikist, it is beyond my imagination to fathom the motivation that tempts cyclists up these roads.

The scenery I’m sure is not quite so beautiful through sweat stung eyes. Moreover, the motorists enjoying this same scenery suddenly find themselves approaching a group of cyclists on an incline travelling no faster than the evolutionary process, and there are more dangerous encounters still on the descent.

I know in my previous experience as a motorist the smallest and most inconsequential infringements made by a cyclist have been enough to raise me to a completely unreasonable degree of anger and frustration.

Motorists’ biggest grievance with cyclists is not that they shouldn’t be on the road, but that they are able to exploit the road rules in ways which a motorist cannot. Although a cyclist is legally obliged to dismount and walk if he wishes to cross with the pedestrian traffic, we are all aware that in the vast majority of cases they do not.

This gets on the motorists’ collective nerve, like the older child who is told to be sensible while the younger one relishes in the joys of irresponsibility. It’s simply not fair.

A cyclist zipping in amongst the swarm of pedestrians crossing from Rundle Mall over Pultney Street at 30kms an hour is just plain dangerous.

Bikists have been known to be guilty in this regard too, but they tend to take it easy and cruise, even waiting for the people to completely dissipate before venturing out, very timidly, like a possum.

Cyclists are faster, much faster than their bikist counterparts, and dangerously more confident.

I have seen a gang of BMX riders fly through that very intersection scarcely avoiding a multitude of pedestrians. These BMX riders are neither cyclists nor bikists; they are hooligans, and not to be trusted.

As a bikist, I am no more threat to pedestrians than a toddler passing joyfully on his tricycle.

The cyclist who speeds past a strolling pedestrian may have judged his path correctly, but the bewildered pedestrian who perceives that he’s just been narrowly missed by a ‘cocky-lycra-boy’ is filled with fear and rage.

Motorists, this is not your battlefield. Besides how does it affect you?

Other than the cyclist has gotten away with something you could never get away with, but would love to.

When it does affect motorists is when cyclists run red lights and simply merge with the flow of traffic.

Again, a degree of calm needs to be observed.

Try to avoid savagely swerving toward, and attempting to frighten the cyclist into submission.

This is not good for anyone.

If a cyclist does pull an utterly stupid move in your path he deserves nothing less, and nothing more for that matter, than a wee word of caution.

Think of it as an excellent opportunity to test your horn.

It’s easy to divide these two groups, and to stereotype them.

But there are good cyclists who observe the rules, and there are those that don’t. There are reasonable and tolerant motorists, and there are those who are grumpy, impatient, and just plain rude.

The first step people, is not to generalise.

Don’t invent excuses to abuse a cyclist if he or she hasn’t done a thing wrong.

A cyclist in your lane trying to avoid parked cars in the cycle-lane is only doing as he needs to keep getting to where he’s going.

And cyclists, not all motorists are out to monster you.

You take a gamble every time you ride on roads with things much heavier, much faster, and infinitely more powerful than you.

There’s no need to enrage the beast by cutting him off or blocking his path.

The trick, I think, is to be respectful. Cars and bikes are legitimate forms of transport.

In this day and age too, the motorist should consider the environmental benefits of riding a bike.

Perhaps they wouldn’t be so afraid to make the switch if there were less people like themselves ready to provide the cyclists with their standard of three near-death experiences a day.

To reach an understanding, we should all take the view of the bikist.

The bikist represents everyone, and can give a reasonable, unbiased viewpoint on this issue.

So remember, when I swerve out in front of your car, or I narrowly miss you at an intersection and you scream after me, fist pumping in the air – ‘F*#king cyclist!,’ I just keep on riding, it’s like water off a ducks back, I’m a bikist.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Speed Snobs Anonymous

Was the weather just flippin' gorgeous yesterday?? It was in the upper 50s (F)!! I wore bike shorts ffs! I'm pretty sure I blinded people with my white-a** legs. Sorry, Citizens of the Greater Seattle Area! (I'm pretty sure y'all are used to the white reflective skin flashes though.) Spring has sprung!!

My ride..or should I say rides were great!

My first ride was particularly special because it was with a dear old friend from high school; Jess Cutler. (Check out her brand new bike blog!) She is an amazing woman and a kick-a** Cat 1 cyclist. Luckily for me, she is racing today, so she was just needing an "easy ride." We rode for an hour and a half out on the Centennial trail at an average pace of 17.4 mph. There were probably rides that could have been more exciting, but I chose that one because we hadn't seen each other since I worked at the main hospital...in like...2007! lol We had catching up to do, and a bike trail makes for better socializing! :) I look forward to future rides, and hopefully grilling her for more great advice on the bike! (She may lend me her rear disk wheel for my race! O. M. G.)

This is why I ride. Can you blame me for needing a second sesh??
After we parted ways, it was just too pretty out to pack it in, so I decided to have some lunch and then ride out to Redmond and visit 1.0. That ride was nice...it took me about an hour. I admit that I got a wee bit lost when my iPhone died and I was GPS-less. :/ Whoops! I stopped for directions, and luckily I was only 3 blocks away at that point! Yay!

1.0 was working at the bike shop last night (Sammamish Valley Cycle), and since he was close to getting off work, I decided I'd hang around and "let him" drive me back to my car, (or his car actually - since we had traded. That's another story.)


Woodinville: An equal opportunity kind-o-place.
On our way, we saw this interesting sign (as seen to the left.) I am not trying to discriminate, but are there really that many road-wheelchair-ists in Woodenville?? Any shouldn't the pedestrians just use the sidewalk? But hey, I guess everyone should have an equal opportunity to be run over by a car...

I want to ride back there!
1.0 and I have decided that when we are old we are going to become bicycle tourists. We are going to be those old people who live on their bikes and ride for like months at a time.  We will have a ton of gear on our super old steel bikes, and have sh*t-loads of mirrors coming off of our heads and handlebars and wherever else I can think to put them. 1.0 is going to have a wandering eye and I will have long silvery hair, and wear a fanny pack in the front. We will probably read those stupid historical road-side signs and stuff. We will look like rolling hippy commune, and we will smile and wave at everyone we pass, as if we are their real grandparents.

At Whole Foods Market.
Today we took a little bicycle tour of Lynnwood. I know, pretty sexy, right? Actually, we just put my dogs Legolas and Six in the trailer, and rode to the new Whole Foods. It was pretty fun. When we got there, we ate some sushi and strawberry-rhubarb pie. Oh baby!

On our return trip back, we were passed by a couple on the trail... I haven't been passed on the Interurban Train before...especially by "weekend riders!" OMFG... "Ok just breathe," I told myself. "You're on a bike carrying groceries, pulling a trailer, a dog kennel, and two dogs. It is perfectly ok that you are going slow enough for slow people to pass you!" I tried to joke about it a bit w would be passing these guys under normal circumstances...

And then I could take it no longer; "GO! Get them! You have to beat them, Jess! Go pass those people on your single speed! Do it for ME!" He looked at me half like Are you nuts? and half like Hell Yeah! and then tore off down the trail. About a minute later, I happened to see another guy coming up behind me. That was all the motivation I needed; it was time for CG to catch those folks too.

And I did.

Hello. My name is Cervelo Girl, and I am a Speed Snob.




Friday, March 23, 2012

TRIal-run TRI


Issaquah 
Triathlon - Home
June 2, 2012








The Issaquah sprint-distance triathlon is a fun race, perfect for experienced triathletes looking to kick off the season, and short enough for novices who are just starting to get their feet wet on the tri circuit. This sprint-distance event takes place along the pristine and scenic shores of Lake Sammamish. Swim in the clean water, bike along the edge, and enjoy the beautiful, flat terrain within the State Park for the cross-country style run.

  • Swim: 1/4 mile, off Tibbetts Beach in Lake Sammamish (expected temp = 61)
  • Bike: 15 mile out-n-back course, mostly flat with one small hill at about
    the 4 and 9 mile marks
  • Run: 3 mile, "cross-country" style on flat trails with various surfaces

I am certain it could grab my legs while I'm swimming by!!
I just signed up for this race. I am nervous, but excited. I am NOT looking forward to jumping into that nasty lake. Not only is it going to be ridiculous cold, but it is totally gross with milfoil weeds. barf. They terrify me... I'm not kidding... I'm TERRIFIED.

It's funny... I think that a lot of kids who grew up on or around Lake Washington have a certain fear of this icky weed. I do remember hearing a story as a child about someone getting tangled in it and drowning. That was sure as hell enough for me to stay away! lol I have heard other people, especially of my mother's generation, admitting that they had feared the stuff because of that exact "urban legend." Fact or fiction? Hmmmm... I guess only the fishies may know, and they'll never tell. ;)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Back to Bike Commuting!

I biked to work yesterday! Yay! I was a wee bit sore from Tuesday's "fun," but nonetheless, my commute in was very enjoyable, and really didn't take very long at all! I believe it took me 18 minutes to ride in, which isn't too shabby, considering it takes me about 15 minutes to drive. I rode Caprica and she did splendid. I was quite pleased with her performance, and I must say that I thought I looked quite cute and sporty on her as I zipped along. :D Hmmm...I think I might be quite full of myself now, in my new sexy Michael Jackson riding coat...

lol

Today was pool day: 2500 yards. Here is what I did:

300 warm up
8 x 50 @ 10 sec drills
4 x 25 @ 5 sec (sprint speed)
400 @ 30 sec
700 @ 30 sec
8 x 50 @ 10 sec drills
200 cool down

After that, I ran 2 miles. Unfortunately, that's all I had time for this morning. Pretty lame, especially because I was totally into it, and could easily and gladly run longer! (Can you believe I just said that??) I am not liking my new Thursday work schedule... Change is hard for me... *whine*

Tri-Suits: Fashion AND Function Please?

Onto the topic of TRI-SUITS.

I need one.

Is there anything related to this IM that isn't going to cost me a fortune? I don't even know where to begin... I want something that is going to wear well, ie. not chafe, also something that will hopefully be reasonably kind to my "girl parts." I need breath-ability and support. I also want some pockets. I also want something that will make my ass look nice, because let's face it, there are going to be pictures of me in this thing for crying out loud! lol 2XU is a brand that I see a lot of people mention... More research must be done... Here are just 2 that I saw that I liked:


This is the one that I have decided is the "cutest." I have no idea how it rates functionality-wise. lol ($216)
Featuring Pearl Izumi's state-of-the-art In-R-Cool and aerodynamic fabric technology, the lightweight, friction-reducing Women's P.R.O. TRI Speed Suit gets you to the finish in record time.
  • P.R.O. Aero fabric with In-R-Cool provides optimal cooling, UV sun protection and aerodynamics
  • Direct-Vent panels dry fast and produce low wind and water drag
  • Integrated bra top offers maximum support
  • Flatlock seams
  • Streamlined welded hem for comfort
  • One back streamlined easy access envelope pocket
  • Tri quick-dry chamois
  • Sublimated graphics
  • 8" inseam (size medium)
2XU Woman's Elite Trisuit ($190)
Slice through the water in the most intelligently designed triathlon suit on the market.  Via premium gauge knit construction, an optimal balance between speed and breathability is achieved.  With X-Stretch back panel, seamless front and the silicone impregnated fast fibers of 2XU's new Hydrocell Nano and kinetic speed fabrics, the Elite Trisuit will feel effortless on any leg of the race.  SBR Fleece padding repels water to provide comfort on the bike while remaining discreet on the run.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Bike, Swim, Run, Bike, Cuddle Dogs!

With one of my bosses out of town this week, I'm actually only working Wednesday and Thursday. Yeah, yeah, must be rough, eh? Well, after a nice sleep-in, and internet goof-off time, I decided it was time to do some training. When I finally poked my head outside, I saw that the sun was shining brightly, but the wind was also wildly howling and whipping through the trees. I had a brilliant idea; I would ride to the Y!

I packed my messenger bag for my swim and run workout, and dressed for a cold ride. The headwind was insane. The first mile and a half is flat, but the rest is pretty much uphill, but none of it really mattered in the wind, because it all sucked equally. lol At least no one cut me off at that one intersection this time!!

As it turns out, midday is a great time to swim at the Y! The pool was very quiet and I had the lane to myself; my favorite! Yay! I did 2100 yards, which is 400-600 yards less than usual, but I justified that by telling myself that I had ridden to the pool. *shrug* My toes were burning like mad throughout the whole swim, (they had gone numb during the ride.)

After my swim, I headed upstairs for my run. I was dreading it, especially because I had forgotten earphones. Without earphones, it would be harder to watch TV...and without TV, it would be hard not to want to put a gun to my head on the treadmill! (Kidding....) Just as I stepped on the treadmill however, the man on the next one over says, "Wow! Look at you! You don't even change! You just come right up!" Then, after seeing my puzzled face he says, "I was in the pool...in the lane over... You didn't even change out of your suit. Good for you... You just come right up here!" Finally understanding, I told him I was practicing a quick-change. I assumed he knew what I was talking about, considering he himself, appeared to be doing a transition. As it turned out, he very a very nice guy. He and his wife and kids were moving to my area. He wasn't actually training for anything in particular at the moment, but he had done my Ironman several times! How cool!? His name was Josh. I hope to see him again.

After running hard for 30 minutes, I hurried to the locker room and threw on my riding clothes. I knew my boys would be getting home soon and I hate to have them alone any longer than need be. I took a short cut home, and had the wind to my back, but even so, WOW, I could feel the burn in my legs! Now that I am home, I think I'll down a gallon of water, eat some protein, and snuggle with my dogs until bed time! I don't have the energy for anything else!!

Oh, I almost forgot!!!... On my way out of the Y, this guy came up to me and asked if I owned the red bike outside; I said, "yeah..." and he said, "really cool bike!" :D


Monday, March 19, 2012

Run, CG! Run!

Today's run was nice. I really had to drag my butt out there, but once I did, it was lovely! 1.0 and I ran out by his house and at the nearby high school. It was funny running there, as it is right next to the swimming pool I used to train at when I was on the swim team 20 years ago. Am I really that old??... 34 doesn't feel that old!

Anywho, we ran to the track and then around it a dozen or so times. There was track practice going on; they appeared to be from the U.W. We wondered why they would be practicing there and not at the university. *shrug* They were doing sprints and hurtles and stuff. I never did track. It looks...not enjoyable. I like scenery. My knees and back sure liked their nice rubber-ish track though! :)

Running today actually felt like it used to. I almost didn't want to stop... Cool.

This is a picture of me on the crater rim of Mt St Helens, (8365 ft/2550 m) in August of 2009. I make this summit trip annually, and that year, I RAN it!


Me after my very first half marathon! I got a 3rd place ribbon for my division! (There were only 4 of us though! lol)


Me beach running on Kauai, May 2010.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

A Bicycle Built For Two

1.0 says that this is what we are going to look like in 30 years. He is partially right, however the following things things are wrong with this picture:

1. I will be the one riding in front.

2. I will not be getting fat!

3. Hello?! Our bike will be a sweet-ass carbon road tandem with drop bars, and we'll be faster than hell!

Had a nice ride today. It felt great to ride outside. The weather report called for snow. What a laugh. It was beautiful out! Spent a lovely 90 minutes on the Interurban Trail, AND I learned how to jump over stuff! Yup! It's official! I am cool now! :D

video 
Check out my sweet jump at the end, (that's the best one.) Hehehe. ;)

To Spin or Not To Spin

I was thinking about joining a spin class at the Y. I think I need more socialization. Heh... I sound like a toddler. On Thursday, after a nightmare workout in the pool (it isn't that good a story) and a short 2 mile run, I started talking to a guy who was on one of the spin bikes. I noticed that he was wearing cycling shoes. I had thought previously that the pedals only had baskets, which if you are a cyclist, you know completely suck. At first I was a bit excited, but then it dawned on me that the pedals were most likely SPD compatible. My shoes have Keo LOOK cleats. I decided to ask the guy anyway, but he just confirmed my suspicions. Although I do have SPD cleats at home, I would still need to buy new shoes, and even cheap ones...well, is it really worth the expense?

Me on my first road bike, a Specialized Ruby Elite.
Normally I rest on Fridays, but I rested this week on Wednesday. The boys had to take a little class at the Y so that they would be allowed to use the fitness equiptment, so I scheduled that for 5:30, so we could go right when I got home from work. There were not particularly excited about this. SC especially, really drug his feet. I had anticipated this, and issues some good "mom threats" to help motivate him.

After the class, we all got on treadmills next to each other for 30 minutes. I ran, MB ran/walked, and SC... *sigh* I am not even sure that we are related sometimes! (Just kidding.) First, he only wanted to walk at 1 mph... ONE?? I reached over and made him turn it up. He finally turned it up to 2.5 mph. After 15 minutes, he was thirsty. I gave him water, but then insisted he go at 3 mph for the rest of the time. That lasted roughly 5 minutes, and then he moved to the recumbent stationary bike.It was a start I guess. :)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

All Aboard!

Six and Legolas think it's time for a ride!
With my new sweet new fenders on my sexy red bike, she is totally ready for commuting, errands, just about anything! But for big grocery trips, lookie what I have! This super awesome bike trailer actually belongs to 1.0, but sadly he had to sell the bike that he used to tow it with, and can't tow it with the one he rides now. He has offered to let me borrow it until he replaces his mountain bike. :) (I think he just wants me to be the one pulling it when we take it camping this summer! lol Just kidding!)

The rain has been coming down in buckets here lately... I know, it's Seattle. Honestly though, I really hope we can have a longer summer this year with more dry days. Last year was a complete rip off. I need light. I need warmth. I think I'd better go take some vitamin D3. lol

Oh, as I mentioned before, I swam with TriGuru the other night. I told him about the trouble I am having with running and with back pain I am having. He wrote me a very long and thoughtful email with many good and helpful ideas. I am still spinning them all around in my head, and when I have a bit more time (I need to dash to work now), I will blog more about it all.

Have a wonderful day everyone!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

This Little Fishy is Ready For Bed

My work schedule changed this week, and won't be working Tuesdays anymore. This morning that I could use the sleep, so I slept in and went to the Y in the evening. The crowd is totally different in the evening; more kids, and less old ladies. There were 3 lap lanes open, and when I arrived, one of them was empty, so I hopped into that one.  One of the women in the lane over, offered to share her workout sheet with me. That was nice of her, but I declined. I felt like day dreaming.

After awhile a teen girl came and joined me in my lane.  I asked her if she would like to split the lane and she agreed. A swim lane normally works like when driving on a US road; you stay to the right and you basically go in a circle. Most people do this in a lane when they are alone, or there are several people in a lane. However, if there are only 2 people in a lane, you can split the lane and each of you just stay on your own side. That way if you go at a different pace, you do not affect each others workout. This young lady had some trouble with this concept. It took 2 verbal reminders and 3 crashes for her to remember how it worked. Poor thing, I think she was just on autopilot. I was gentle. ;)

After roughly 2600 yards, I was about to get out of the pool, when the same gal from the next lane started up a conversation with me about how her and her friend were training for Alcatraz. I thought that was pretty cool. I used to work with a guy years ago who swam that after he had become partially paralyzed from the waist down, after getting cancer on his spine. Crazy amazing, if you ask me! Anyway, we got to talking, and it turns out that one of them was an Ironman race official! Ha! We ended up chatting about this and that, and the different rules and such for about 15 minutes in the hot tub. It was pretty cool.

Just as I was about to get out, guess who happens to walk out onto the pool deck, but Tri-Guru, himself! It was great to see him! I was supposed to head upstairs for my run, but I couldn't pass up a chance to swim with TG, so I got back in the pool! lol We ended up watching each others stroke and he gave me some tips on new drills to try.  He has a beautiful stroke, and he actually said that mine was very nice as well. :D He did give me some things to think on though. I might be expending too much energy on the recovery part of my stroke... I am going to do more fingertip drag drills. After that, we did laps. All in all, I put in a ton of swim time tonight!

You Know I'm BAD!

Tell me... Do I look like Michael Jackson in this jacket?

It is an Assos winter cycling jacket, that used to retail for $379! I can get it for less than cost...in fact, I did, but I'm having buyers second thoughts.  I actually got the lighter blue one. It has black front panels and black outer arm panels. I liked the one pictured a bit more, but the other one fit a bit better. I don't own anything by this company... Thoughts?
Got my new custom fenders, and no more "unicorn horn!"  Thanks 1.0!!!  Caprica is complete and I am ready to start riding in to work again! (As soon as I get her back from him, that is.) :)

Dear Motorist...

Dear Motorist,

Last Sunday, while I was riding along IN the bike lane, I found it to be rude when you pulled out right in front of me, from the gas station parking lot.  Your actions were not only dangerous and illegal, but they were very rude. You see, when a cyclist is out of their saddle , (as I was) and trying to get up a huge hill and make the green light, it makes their task infinity more difficult when your big stupid ass car pulls out and makes them lose their momentum!!!

Anywhoo, I just wanted to give you the heads up on that one.

Cheers,

CG

As you can see, Sunday's ride wasn't "uneventful." lol In fact, it was a little too eventful to ride much at all!  I gave up after about 6 miles due to dangerously strong winds. It was pretty lame. At least I got to eat a yummy crepe.

Hey I have a question for anyone out there who may have an answer!  My fingers and toes get mad cold in this weather. It really makes me reluctant to go out when the temp drops too much, especially if it is also wet out. I got some sub zero lobster claw gloves with liners, which are really helping...although, now I have trouble shifting! lol My friend suggested "electric socks." Do they have those for cycling? Do they work? Will they cost me a kidney? Does anyone have any other ideas? I have Reynaud's (ok, self-diagnosed, but I would put money on it) so most of the usual tricks are just not enough for me.

They look much better here after the water bath. They were getting purplish. :/
I took this picture 40 minutes post ride. I had been in a warm car and my warm house, so finally I submerged  my hands in a hot water bath for 5-10 mins. As you can imagine, this 'condition' is particularly...painful. I should mention that I did not wear my new sub zero gloves on this ride. :/ (Taken last week.)




Friday, March 9, 2012

Your Hair Looks Great But You Look Like an Idiot

I have been noticing a lot more bike commuters this year. Super cool really. I'd like to think it's because people are realizing all of the amazing health benefits it provides, and they are trying to reduce their 'carbon footprint,' but most likely it's because gas is over $4/gallon and the economy is shit. But for whatever reason, I see a lot more bikes on the road and that is cool.

What is NOT cool however, is the dumb-asses who choose to ride in traffic, busy traffic nonetheless, and NOT WEAR A G-DAMN HELMET!! Ok, maybe they just don't get that the ground is hard. Maybe they think that cars can see them and they'll be safe. Maybe they are just flippin' idiots! Yesterday I say a guy riding down the busy highway with his helmet clipped onto his handlebars... WTF? I actually felt like pulling over and flagging the down, just so I could ask him his reasoning for bringing the damn helmet in the first place!

Here's the thing road cyclists - wear a flippin' helmet. If you ride in the road, it's just a matter of time.. It isn't if you are hit (or run off the road), it's when? I hate to sound so grim folks, but it's true. If you spend enough time in traffic, it's bound to catch up with you. I've had my taste of pavement several times. I was even left in the middle of the street by the driver..unable to use either of my arms, or to even get myself up.

Now don't get your panties in a bunch. I have found forgiveness for this individual. My point is that drivers are not always looking and they can't always see us. Some of them are just dicks. Regardless, you only get one brain! So what if you have helmet hair?! You don't need to spend a fortune on a helmet either, in fact, I wouldn't. Someone once told me never to spend more than $40 on a helmet. They said that a $40 was just as safe as an expensive one, but won't hurt as much when you have to toss it out after an accident. That's right. After a helmet has hit the ground in an accident, it needs to be retired. Seems like a pretty small investment to protect one of your biggest assets, eh?

Ride safe out there.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Get LOST Beard...

Um, gross.
Yesterday, I did just over an hour on the trainer while I watched Lost on Netflix.  I finished Season 3.  The boys are going to kill me for going so far ahead of them. Heh.. :D Jack looks terrible with a beard!  Totally barf. It is weird for me to say that, because I normally have the major hots for beards. The beardier the better! Not in that dude's case though! Blecht!

Jack, you are dead to me until you shave that crap off, and go back to your sexy stubble.

Today, I went to the pool for my usual swim workout.  I normally keep close count of my laps, but today I just felt like swimming and 'not stressing it.' I basically just went for the usual amount of time my workout takes me, and then called it good.  I had a few things bugging me during my swim; for one, I had a headache. Also, my knees and my right shoulder were hurting.  The shoulder thing is new.  I did some stretching, and the discomfort lessened.  It isn't bothering me now at all. The knees were bothering me on the bike last night, so I wasn't too surprised. I'm tight back there. After that, I headed upstairs for my run. The swim did loosen things up with the knees, so they didn't really bother me, which was good.  I am going to do some all over stretching tonight.

I want to climb tonight... I think I have the energy to do it, but I don't feel like driving.  Jeez, that's lame.

Update: The gal at work wants to do "happy hour" with me. I know this makes me sound like a total dipshit, but what does this entail? Do I dress up? Do I wear make-up and stuff? What do you talk about with women at happy hour?? I feel like I'm going on a date! lol

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Water...

Yesterday's swim (2700 yards in the pool), and 40 minute run left me utterly tanked at work.  It was a good thing I was just on phones in triage, because I didn't have the energy to move.  I am pretty sure it was dehydration.  Monday night, I got a wild hair to ride the trainer for a couple hours while I watched 'Lost' on Netflix.  Jeez that show is nuts.  Anyway, I sweat like mad spinning in the house.  I drank some water, but I'm sure that I sweat in my sleep overnight too.  All a set up for a dehydration crash the next day.  I hydrated like mad during my shift, and perked up just about the time I went home. Heh.

I'm in week 12, by the way... I am also freaking out a little...

Monday, March 5, 2012

Caprica's First Ride!

I decided to take my new red bike out for my long ride yesterday.  She rode really well!  I can definitely feel the weight difference between her and my Cervelo, but she rode smooth, and she seems to be fit pretty well.  My saddle is a Specialized Ruby Body Geometry, and it is actually quite comfortable!  It is lighter that the crappy old one on my Cervelo, so I might just switch them out.  I like these pedals more...  Even though they are LOOK Keo, just like my others, I find them much easier to clip into.  They are the cheaper ones, and I think, they too, weigh less! lol  I did notice a little bit of clicking in the gears, but that's just the new cables stretching.  All normal stuff and easy to fix.  The Fulcrum wheels felt great, as did my old carbon bars.  I had missed them.

Matthews Beach, Lake Washington
The ride was really lovely.  I started at Log Boom Park and took the BGT out to (just shy of) Marymoore Park.  Then I headed back the way I came, passed Log Boom, and ended my ride at Matthew's Beach.  I got to see the new section of the trail for the first time, and it was really nice!  Much better than the old horrible bumpy trail from before.  I swear that portion of trail has been in that condition since I used to ride it to my grandparents house with my little brother when we were kids!  Tree root damage...the price you pay for it being so pretty along there.

I am always a sucker for B & W.
When I was in the valley in Woodenville, there was a huge flock of Canadian geese - at least 100, maybe more.  They were flying in this huge formation into the same headwind I was fighting.  It was cool watching them, because they were so close to me.  I was going faster than them, so when I caught up, I slowed my pace a bit and matched them for awhile before heading on my way.  Many others on the trail had stopped to watch them.  I wish I could have gotten a picture, but I would have broken my neck!

People were friendly on the trail yesterday.  It made riding that much more enjoyable.  At one point I stopped to take off a layer and have a drink.  There was a man and his young daughter playing with a RC car.  She was chasing it around and laughing.  I liked that.  It reminded me of when my boys were little.  As I started to leave, an older woman hailed me down.  She said she was with a group of volunteers who were picking up litter, that some of the party had gone down the trail too far, and she didn't have their cell numbers to call and tell them to return.  She asked me if I saw anyone from her group, if I could pass along the message to go back.  I told her that I would be happy to.  It actually made me feel really good to be of some help...even if it was something very small.

Something weird did happened on the ride though.  Somewhere during the ride, I started to have some chest pain.  I don't think that I have mentioned this before on my blog, but I have a fast heart.  I have had what I have always called my "hummingbird heart" for as long as I can remember.  I never gave it much thought until I started becoming more athletic.  A few years ago, I went in to see a nurse practitioner because I had a bad chest cold.  While she was listening to my chest with her stethoscope, she noted my rapid heart rate, but then became alarmed.  She said my heart was "clicking."  This of course led me to go see my PCP.  Although I don't remember him hearing the clicking, I did tell him about how my chest hurt when I ran and my heart rate got really high, and about when I had worn my heart rate monitor to bed once, and that my resting rate was 103!  We decided to do a treadmill stress test/echo (at least that's what I think I remember having!)  The good news is that my heart was healthy and I was in great shape!  He did prescribe me metoprolol, a beta-blocker, that I could take as needed for palpitations...or in other words, when my heart was going to be pushed hard so as to prevent the pain.  I took it for awhile, but eventually I quit...  The bummer of the deal is that I can't seem to figure out how to heart rate train...but that is a whole other can of worms!

Yesterday on the bike, that's sort of how it felt at first - chest pain like I've had in the past that accompanies extreme exertion.  It continued to bother me (mildly) throughout the duration of the ride.  I had lowered my exertion level, but was still pushing myself, so it didn't seem too out of the ordinary.  The discomfort continued however, for the rest of the day.  By last evening, I was really uncomfortable!  The pain had spread to my neck and left shoulder, and my sternum and back hurt when I tried to take a deep breath.  I know, I know, this sounds...bad, lol, but actually, the worse it hurt, the more I could tell that it was all muscle-related.  I could barely move by the time I went to bed, but surprisingly by morning I felt much improved.  I stayed home with a sick kiddo, so I managed to squeeze in a massage today, which also helped.  I am hoping this is just a fluke thing and not related to my bike... 

Tonight I need to do some running.  1.0 is coming over to run with me, so I can do it outside... It snowed today...it didn't stick, BUT STILL! 


Saturday, March 3, 2012

Rad Female Friend Wanted

Taken at Recycled Cycles in Seattle, WA
After my swim on Tuesday, I ran for 30 minutes on the treadmill.  I should have gone for an hour, but I had gotten a late start that morning.  I wasn't too disappointed though.  My knee pain seems to be resolved though.  With the inserts and 1.0's cleat adjustment, I'm right as rain. (What does that expression even mean?) 

On Wednesday I had planned to do a bike/run QC, but when 1.0 got to my house that evening, he had a massive headache.  I decided to extend the ride portion (on the trainer) and skip the run, to let him off the hook.  I suppose I could have driven to the gym for my run since I couldn't run outside alone in the dark, but honestly, I was really exhausted from work and any excuse was enough.

Thursday is supposed to be a swim and bike day, but I figured I should run since I have been such a pussy about runny lately. :/  So after my swim...oh..did I mention that starting this week I have upped my pool workout from 2500 yards to 2700 yards?  I don't think I had.  It's week 11, so I guess I'm in "phase 2."  Ok, so after my swim, I headed upstairs to do an hour on the treadmill.  I am ashamed to report that I only made it 35 minutes.  I don't think that it was really that I couldn't go further, it was that I got so flippin' bored when my TV show ended... Oh my, that's embarrassing!  And, no... I will NEVER admit to what I was watching. (1.0, if you tell...I know where you live...)

Yesterday was my rest day.  I actually considered going climbing despite the fact that I was like the walking dead by the time I left clinic.  On the first Friday of the month, they have a ladies only climbing class at my climbing gym.  This newer gal at work is pretty cool and I thought she might like it.  I invited her to go.  I think she wanted to, but needed to check on some things first and said she would call.  She never did though.  I was a little disappointed.  I don't have female friends that will do the things I like to do...or they do like some of my activities, but are married, or "have kids now" and can never go, or whatever.  I'm not giving up though!  I really want some female friends to do stuff with! (and not lame-a** shopping and mall stuff.  I'm not going out like that.)  Is this too much to ask for?? If I can't have a boyfriend, can't I at least have a cool chick friend to hang with??  I don't don't know why these seem equivalent to me... Ignis fatuus...