Thursday, April 26, 2012

Walk your dog ...not your bike

Thank you KA for that wonderful quote....and oh so true.  I have heard about people walking their bikes due to steep climbs- Ha....really? I have done the Death Ride 129 miles, 15,000 feet of climbing I did not walk my bike!  

So Saturday we rolled out on the Mt Laguna Classic which  features 101 miles with 10,000 feet of climbing and three different ascents of San Diego County's Mount Laguna! We climbed to San Diego's highest point via Sunrise Hwy from the north, via the fabled and car-free Kitchen Creek from the south-east, and via the little-known and truly epic Pine Creek drainage from the west....which is 20-22% grade at times... Let me digress.  I am in terrific biking shape and 100 mile ride should not be an issue.   I have done 1- 5 hour ride since October so I knew it would be a long day.   And long it was....close to 7 hours!

Waking up at 3:45am was a bit like Ironman, Very dark and chilly walk with the doggies and we were rolling by 4:15 to pick up Liz and head to Pine Valley.   Registered in the dark and missed the first group but rolled out at 6:10,

It was chilly indeed but soon were were climbing and the sun was out.  Our goal was zero lactic acid on the 1st climb - I watched my power and keep my HR low-  long climb but nothing brutal and we regrouped at the aid station. Definitely a warm day and we ditched our vests, arm warmers and left it piled up on top.   No need to carry extra weight.   20 minutes and we are down at the bottom and heading out to Kitchen Creek.

KC is one of my favorite climbs...steeper than Sunrise Highway but with the road closed to cars and trees all about it is so scenic. This is a part of San Diego you must see.   I was feeling good and the 2nd half of the climb picked it up a bit and was having fun pedaling past some that were seemingly slowing with every mile.  I was sooo happy to be on my road bike with a 12-28- used that 28 frequently.  I am not one to "save an extra gear" I use it early and often.  I was also paying special attention to fueling and calories...220-250/hour with cliff bars and pb/j sandwiches.  Lots of water with NUUN and Enduralytes.  2nd climb done and feeling good!  2 down 1 to go.

This time we go back to Pine Valley, where we started and checked in with John who was not doing the ride...he climbed Pine Creek, had breakfast, took a nap and was hanging out enjoying the scene.   Off we went to the "dreaded 20%" climb.  We are now at mile 82, my legs are feeling the 7000 feet of climbing, 5+ hours riding and it is hot.  We are chatting it up and the road is filled with potholes and sand "nice" and it begins to climb.  I am thinking is this, let me tell you, 20% is when you are saying " Oh F I may fall off my bike"  20% is HR 195 (new max for me on the bike) Power is over 400 Watts and Cadence is 38- that is 20%.  I am following some guy who is doing the "mailman" crisscrossing along the steep road and I am counting to 10 and starting over...I can do this, I can do this.... I see a turn ahead and what I am sure it is a leveling out but no only to round the corner and see up, up , up..... the guy in front of me clips out and is walking.  My morale is crushed.... I am following him, how can he be walking.... I take about 4 pedal strokes and am in fear of a heart attack, pulled muscle or rolling downhill and having to ride back up.  I do the dreaded unclip and start walking my bike....really I am pushing my bike up the hill.  

I am demoralized, only until I round a bend that allows me to look back and see 10+ people all the way down the valley pushing their bikes.  Misery loves company....1 guy passed me riding- I snarled at him but did say "good job"   Finally there was a small level and I got back on and mashed it for a while until I saw a short downhill and then another major climb and an oasis... a white tent!!! I was almost to the tent a truck is on my as% literally and there is not shoulder, no bike lane and they are now honking.....really, are you serious!  For fear of getting run over I had to stop and let them go.  Starting again...ha....rolling back down no way as the road was too steep and narrow but turn around- somehow I managed to get riding again and make it to the tent! 

Found a few weary riders and ice and water.  I am not feeling great and realize that I did not eat or drink the last hour of hell...... and I am feeling it now.  Refueled and forced down some calories and was told 5 more miles....3 miles to Sunrise Hwy and then the top.  I followed another guy and hung back a few bike lengths and just matched his pace and cadence and suffered the rest of the way.... Finally back to Sunrise Highway and then a few miles to the top!  I was very done. Grabbed my gear and headed down.

6:45 minutes in the saddle- YOWZA and a great day!!  Been there, done year?  too soon..... I am still reeling that I had to walk my bike- and now I need new cleats, thank you very much!!

This is a great event....well run!  They start you in small groups so no mass start which can be dangerous. All aid stations well stocked and very helpful volunteers.  

Saturday, April 14, 2012


This is a very complicated joint.....
The Anterior tibiafibular ligament is causing me MUCHO problems-
Why they grumbly title...Why you ask? guess, just take a guess?  Give up...okay- I am NOT running!   I was running, sort of, a little and was happy ok not really happy  with 20 minutes of running every other day.  I got to warm up on the elliptical for 10, run 20 and then do the elliptial for 30.  Yeah 1 hour of not running but sort of running simulated running.  It was great for 3 times and then I made the error of going from the TM to the StairMaster to avoid the mind numbing boredom of the elliptical because my friend Amy is on there due to her broken collarbone and rib fractures.  We chatted non stop, the time flew by and upon completion my ankle was sore...not a little sore but more sore than from running sore- F'ing kidding me. No worries, lots of ice and compression and I am sure I will be fine.  That was Tuesday....NOT fine!   Really, how is this Ironman thing going to work.  Seriously if Lake Placid offered I would be in the money! 

I can swim which is my least favorite of the 3 and the one I don't like to do., ride my bike pain free - which I am VERY happy to be doing and the ol running is the challenge....and since the run is my challenge at every Ironman- I am patiently waiting for my ankle to be ready freaking out on a daily basis.....

So lets talk about what is FUN!   GWL + Pine Valley on Saturday when it was close to 90 degree!  New chic joined us and she fit right ride where we lost a few (their choice to turn around early) and jumped on the wheel of a roadie coming back from Descanso.  Dude says about 15 min later after we are in a serious pace line with a major head wind- do you mind another body?  Headwind,  uh no, welcome aboard!!  It was great until he blew up....okay one more boy to pull along.   We had great fun and welcomed a new "chick" to the group. 

Fun was riding GWL again on Thursday with Maureen....chilly, chilly day but riding out there is always a treat! 

And then there is the rest of life, work, coaching (more on that as I have exciting news) but am off to the gym for some elliptical fun!   Wimpy me bailed on riding today due to high winds and rain.  Tomorrow looks that sounds like more fun. And my riding partners seemed happy with the 5:30am call to stay in bed :)

Ok this is fun talented "pointer"   Here is Mako pointing the birds...

"mom,  see the bird, see him, see him....come on shoot him. I'm doing my job you do yours! "

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

I survived

Oceanside 70.3 is over and I survived the weekend..... I know, stop b*&tching Julie but this was the 1st time in 6 years, since I started in Triathlon that I did not race O'side.   It was my 1st 70.3, my 3rd triathlon ever, it is in my home town....the list goes on!  

But I did go and cheer and that was a lot of fun!  Amy and I joined forces and cheered on so many friends...It was great to see so many familiar faces out there laying it on the line.  With the course change we had a great spot where we saw so many people 2 or 3 times.   Nytro girls rocked it!  Loved seeing our kits out there and am eager to get mine out racing as well!

I got up early Saturday AM and was on my bike by 6am alone with my iPod and did some damage..I took on Highland Valley Road and went hard- I needed to hurt and be humbled before heading up to the race.  It was humbling as the power is still low in regards to the effort...but that will come.   

My sis and family were in town so that was a great distraction....lots of food and wine and fun! 

Hoping to be running this week....10 min every other day, starting over with baby steps and not overdoing it.  Rehab United is continuing to kick my arse but adding flexibility each time and the ankle is stable. Had a particularly hard session last night and ankle and fracture was really sore...Bryan was not worried, ice, sleep and all should be okay.  I was not believing it - but I woke up today and while the stabilizing muscles and my glutes are on fire- the ankle and fracture are not sore.  Good news!

Spring break for the big plans around here -after going to AU for winter break we are sticking close to home and both kids are busy with lacrosse, golf and JD is working.  More relaxing around here without the stress of homework for a week!  

I have been really busy with swimming lessons....after O'side seems many are eager to step up their swim for the next big race or they have time to focus between races.  I think the #1 feedback I heard from my athletes who raced is they need more OW swimming!  Good news is that the water is getting warmer.  OW is very different than the pool...not only due to swells, currents and all the people but the continuous swimming is MUCH tougher than having a wall every 25 or 50M.  I am going to challenge my clients to get in the OW and do OW races... a 1 mile OW race is great prep for a 70.3.  Swim with others, race hard, practice sighting....There is a 1 mile OW swim on May 20- Encinitas - if you are racing in June- sign up and do it!.   Make it a good training weekend.... Saturday Encinitas Century Ride and Sunday 1 mile swim - add a long run in there and that is a solid weekend!  Who wants to play??? 

Well....what can I say

I started this last week...never finished it!  Going to finish now and get back at it.....

My dad recently asked me if my blog was still active....yes and no. I find I blog a lot when all is going great!  I like to share all the good happenings and they are fun to write about, but when life is not all peachy I notice I stop blogging and stop posting on FB.   Okay I do write when things are really crappy too...(sometimes)  Despite what some have said, my entire life is NOT on FB or in my blog.  Sort of simply my life would be. 
Nothing tragic, life threatening or devastating...just ho hum.  Really just life.... I thought I had a major breakthrough last week- as I was chasing Mako I noticed no pain during my little jog.  So I did a 10 minute run as authorized but the Ortho- a little stiff but no pain.  Sweet!  Next day another 10 and then 15 and then 15 and then whamo....swollen, painful and back to square 1.  More pain than when the boot came off.... really? Panic sets in, I re broke my leg?  No, really don't think so but fear those sprained tendons and ligaments that are locked up were not too happy about being unlocked with pounding force is a strong word when I was running 10+ minute miles.   Arrgh...... more rehab, more elliptical and now a recovery week. 

Recovery from what you say....riding, riding and elliptical.  Coach pointed out I took 3 weeks off, yeah vacation that it was with my spiffy boot, 1 week real vacation in Australia and then started riding....1 hour a day followed by a 12+ hour week on the bike, along with swim and elliptical.  The hours added up but I felt good.....ez miles with low effort. So we rolled that into the next week and the next....and now well I am tired, legs are sore and I am "resting"  I  know necessary evil- good ol recovery.  

This week is historically (for the last 5 years) one of anxiety, anticipation and bundled energy.   Why.....I  am racing O'side or historically have raced O'side.  5 years ago it was sheer anxiety of finishing the race and then it was goal of a PR and then hunting a Kona Slot....This year there are no Kona slots but there are Vegas slots.  (for those who have no idea what I mean- Kona slot is a qualification for Ironman World Championships in October in Kona and Vegas is a slot to the 70.3- 1/2 Ironman World Championships in Vegas) And it is the 1st big race of the year.   I am usually paranoid about getting sick, questioning my training and analyzing who is racing in my age group.

Not this year.....but I have decided to participate (not race) the swim/bike portion.  Why? I paid $285 and there are no refunds, I have 2 athletes that I coach who are racing and I want to support them and ALL of my friends (except 1) will be I want to be out there cheering them on.   I was going to ride up and cheer but coach suggested I recover this week and then go and swim/bike.  It's not like I am tempted to run because I CAN'T.  So I will go and "play for the day"   After my killer session at Rehab United today...not sure how fresh I will be- something about 60+ squats and lunges- but I digress. Update....I DID not do the  Slammed on Friday working and it was 6:00 and I had to walk the dogs, pick up Riley, get to my moms for dinner, eat dinner and I had done zero for the "race" I was totally stressed about my getting my race gear together etc and the idea of waking up at 3:45 to "race"  So I bailed out... had a nice long walk with the dogs, relaxing night with my family and got up early and did a killer bike ride and headed up to O'side to cheer!