Thursday, March 23, 2017

Getting smashed...

Smash Campers 
20 years ago getting smashed likely would have been a big night at  local pub on St Patty's day...but now it means going to "camp" with Hillary Biscay and her crew for 5 days of smashing training.   Hillary is a dear friend and a retired pro triathlete who is known for her ability to smash epic training and races and thus she is dubbed the  Smashfest Queen.

I attended "fast" camp which indeed had roster of some really fast (and young) triathletes,  Some pro and some kick ass age groupers.    Camp was in Tucson, where every triathlon camp seems to be in the winter, and goes from Thur- Mon.  I shared a place with the other 2 matriarchs of camp Lynne and Cheryl - who are awesome BTW, but we were the geriatrics of camp for sure.  Our condo looked like  a PT facility with all the recovery tools splayed about.  Keeping up (or trying to keep up) with the millennials is taxing on us aging ladies.

My roommates at camp! 
We started with a shake out run, now my idea of a shake out run is an easy 3 miler on the coast, where as Hillary's is a 6+ miler in 88 degrees and hilly.  The pace was chill but the run was demanding on our winter bodies....as the CA temps have barely been above 60 ... right listen to me complain about the weather at camp on vacation.  Well it's my blog so I am going to :)

Early to bed as we rolled out for a 100 miler to Madera Canyon-instructions were do not use all your tokens on the way out, you don't want to be "that camper" who crushes the first 30 miles and we are waiting for you the last 30 miles.   Mind you my longest ride this year has been 60 miles so I was indeed happy to be conservative.   The climb up Madera was great, watts were there and I was feeling good.  Though the 2nd 1/2 was tough I was holding my own and really happy to log 100 miles!  Even did the geeky triathlon "hot lap" to hit 100  (although I did spend to many tokens but that was not apparent for a few days.)   Rest/recover/eat and then we hit the pool for the "forever" set...and now I get it's name.  OMG sprinting 25's with band only over and over again with a 300/200/100 all out in there.  Here is why I go to camp, after that 100 miler I would NOT have knocked out a swim session like that and definitely NOT with band only.  Look I can hold my own swimming but put a band on me....flailing Dunkle.



amazing views indeed 

More eating and early to bed.  My roomies were laughing at me as I headed to bed at 7.  Up early for another epic Hillary workout 100x100 in the pool- yes indeed that was fun.  And the last 40 with paddle/buoy /band on crushing intervals.  Having good lanemates surely make it go by faster...I crawled out of the pool to WF and was famished (again) and shoveling carrots and guacamole in as fast as possible along with Jason's dark chocolate PB cubs and iced coffee - yes I was that person in line inhaling food and drinks.  Before it seemed possible it was time for a recovery ride up, yes up Gates pass.  Yes it was hot but at this point we were all tired and it was about camaraderie and really I did feel better post ride-    Rolling back to the house it was hard to remember what day it was, if I had showered and when I had last eaten.  Copious amounts of roasted sweet potatoes, chicken, spinach and taro veggie chips all topped off with dark chocolate.   The key to a good camp is #justkeepeating

Could not get to bed early enough as up next was Mt Lemmon but not before a swim.  It was technique day for everyone but the 4 of us, who got to do a 3400k workout in a 86 degree pool that included more band only sprints BUT for kicks and giggles Maik tied a towel on the band... can you say drown me now!   Out of the pool, more food and off to Mt Lemmon.  This was a struggle- I may have used too many tokens on day 1 and my legs were not responding...it was about getting to the top.  I had a raging headache and did not have any IBU so I asked sag if there was any in Hillary's car. He pulls out a bottle of drops for headache/migraine and zero instructions.  I pondered what to do and decided to put 8 drops on my tongue and go for it.  Burning mint and eucalyptus going down my throat was interesting.  I was thinking maybe it's like HotShot where it tricks your system....turns out the directions say drop 8-10 drops on our hands and massage into base of neck and forehead.   LOL...nothing like feeling with essential oils.

With Mt Lemmon there is the top at mile 20 but that's not really the top, you descend and then go back up and down again.  Ugh - time was much slower that last year and watts took a dive.   And I did not want to devour a cookie or was afraid to with my new eating regiment- ugh!  I went for the coke float- huge scoops of ice cream and coke- That was the bomb...sugar and caffeine.  Weather was so warm we did not need jackets or all the usual gear for the descent.   Mt Lemmon descent is the best!! Way less technical than Palomar so you can really haul down - even in aero bars for a lot of it.  With the head it was like descending into a dryer.  97 degrees at the bottom- yowza!

And we still had to run. And this is not just a 4 mile T run, no, you are put in groups and told to run 1 mile ez, pick up the 2nd mile, turn around and it's a race back.  Holy hell...I was running on H's heels and dying, literally gasping, wheezing and falling off and she would point at her heel - as in "heel Julie"  and I would sprint back only to start to die.  It was a killer but I was beyond psyched with the pace I could pull off.  WTH....bike legs are tanked but I can run?  Don't over think it Julie...take it :)

Final day of camp.... while you are SO happy, it's also sad as you have to return to life.   This was long trail run day and I had to opt out due to my foot being agitated from the race.  So I slogged 2 hours in the heat and called it a success!

We stayed another night and went to the JW for drinks and burgers and fries... the reward for hard work- new friends and old friends and it was a total blast!

Going to triathlon camp is as good as it gets at 50!   I'll take the fitness deposit in the bank.