Monday, January 25, 2010

GWL on a Monday....

2 weeks and I have been missing my favorite ride. So we hit it today....Sun was shining, was chilly at the start but warmed up and the sky was sensational and the company was smashing. So JN ran Carlsbad 1/2 yesterday and did pretty darn well, she agrees to ride with a disclaimer she will be really slow... blah, blah, blah. E and I have no excuse, well compared to JN we have age as an excuse. So we roll out and it has been a few weeks so there is non stop talking going on and a lot of chatter about teenagers, how will we survive! My phone is buzzing, we stop to make sure no kid or work emergency, J keeps riding. We catch up. Have to pee, so E and I stop and J will roll along slowly. Well 90 minutes later she circles back to make sure we are alive. UH the wonder of youth and well being a stud as well. Very impressive. I think our cadence was low, pace was off, but our caloric burn was up as we yammered the entire way. Kids, kids, oh kids. Finally discussed books, world peace and that was pretty much it. We forgot the recipes and men conversation.....well there is always next week. What would I do without my girlfriends on the bike. And we parked at the old spot so our transition run was across the parking lot to Starbucks.

No better way to start the week! Well maybe a few, but this is a G, okay PG, well mostly PG rated blog.

What dog is losing it and I am very sad. His eye sight is going and it is crushing to see him crash into things and then he gets so disoriented. He was walking into a corner last night, poor puppy. I wonder when John and I will move downstairs to sleep with him or install and elevator for him to come up. He will not let us carry him any more, hurts too much. more cannot think about him, well moving on.

Going to masters swim tomorrow and I am scared.... I will have to move down many lanes. Goal is do not look at the clock all week- just increase yardage and be happy about swimming.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The sun is shining.....

Finally!!! Between travel and the torrential downpour this week I was not on my bike all week. Ouch! Mega week last week and minor week this week. Plans to roll at 8 and at 7:30 it was pouring but there was blue sky West and East....just rainfall on my hood. Texting C- are we good to go? Decide to reconfirm at 8, by 7:50 blue sky and no clouds in sight. Bundled up as it was chilly, 47 to be exact so not exactly freezing but not balmy. Tunes in my ears and it was great to be riding again. Me C and J on El Apajo and we were rolling. Chilly and some ominous clouds but we were hopeful. Up Del Dios and Lake Hodges looked like a massive mud pit. Roads are filled with debris, bike line is often non ridable and we have lovely mud skid marks up our backs and rears, but we are happy to be riding. We are heading East to Lake Wolford and there are lots of happy peeps on their bikes. Few cloud scares but all in all it was awesome! Well until I picked up a massive nail coming back into Escondido....big flat, filthy bike, malfunctioned valve, 3 CO2's but it was all good and were rolling soon, well not really, but eventually.

So the company was great, the ride was good but I really don't like all the traffic (scary) and the spot lights. When I first met my good friend E and she took me to GWL I remember her saying, "riding out here is like being on crack, it is so addictive" I had not ideal what the heck she meant but now I totally know. East County- whether it is GWL, Kitchen Creek, Sunrise never or maybe only 1 time have to stop and unclip. We ride for hours and miles and don't stop and there is VERY little traffic. So driving 30-40 min to ride is 1- not very environmental 2-takes a lot of time....but is a huge amount of fun! So there you have it. The bonus is we have choices and we can do them all.

Health update.....success in the swim department- 3 days and up to 2100 yards pain free. yee haw. Looks like Masters is on the agenda for next week! ( I hope anyway) Running- had a great week of consistent running- 30 minutes a day and NO hip pain when running. Some aching after but with good stretching and ice - it goes away. Thursday my shin flared up! What the H? I have not had shin splints in years....come on people - let me train! I ran Friday and minimal pain when running but sore after- so I have a new spot for ice, heat and treatment. Poor KP- I went for ART and he asked now which hip, where is the new pain, how much time to you have? All I can say.... being young is a blessing- is you are under 40 relish it, appreciate it and know that with each year...well enough said. Back to being happy!

Tough week as a parent- really it is not easy and not a picnic! Enough said.

Family in town - Awesome. Bro, sis-in-law and niece/nephew from down under are in San Diego for 2 weeks. Terrific reuniting dinner on Friday in their rented (very cool) pad in Bird Rock. Mom and B there and it was good fun, good fun and of course a lot of hide and seek. H.S with a 2 and 4 year old it quite funny....where ever you hide, they hide there for their turn. If you don't find them immediately they start shouting "over here" And with the beauty of kids...the game can go on and on and on. It is just so fun to run around and play with them again!

Tomorrow is all about lacrosse...Riley in the morning 2 games and JD 2 in the afternoon and then to Mom's for another big family dinner!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Rain, rain, rain.....

Holy cow! Talk about weather. Thank goodness this is not my week for bike volume. I would be in a coma from boredom on the trainer. This is not, get a little wet and be careful rain, this is put on foul weather gear to walk the dogs rain. Rocky walks outside, pees and turns around and goes back in. Turns around looks at us... "really? you want me to go out in that? no thanks" He goes in and takes a nap and Zen and I traipse through puddles and get soaking wet. What a site I am in Riley's swim parka, shorts (otherwise my pants are soaked) and flip flops, mind you it is 50 degrees. But I don't have rain boots so whatever I wear gets soaked, may as well be freezing but not have wet clothes and be freezing.

So I did a swim test on Monday.... my shoulder was feeling a lot better and I figured why not. Either shooting pains or maybe it would be okay. 1st few laps were stiff and as I swam it felt better. Now the bigger issue was swimming in the 24 hour fitness pool. 1st- pool is 20 yards, 2nd- indoor, 3rd water is 85 degrees and lastly most of the people in the pool are walking and running. We are not talking about injured runners or triatheletes, we are talking about older women and most large in ballooning swim contraptions who yammer and walk up and down the pool. Now with 5 or 6 coming at me from the other directions it simulates swimming through the break in the ocean. There are lane lines, sort of, but the bow out so much that they nearly touch and these women are fierce. People complain about cyclists riding 2 deep, really come and check this out. It was scary. Thus after 800 yards I got out. But, but the good news is my shoulder felt good. My stroke terrible and no feel for the water but no pain. Yee haw!

I was so excited I got dressed and stepped on the is the run test. Ugh stiff legs, start running slowly, pain? no pain?, nope no pain....really no pain. So excited I think I can run forever and am already reminding myself coach said max 20 minutes, do not go backwards. Well as luck would have it, by 20 minutes I am tired, my legs are tired so I step off. Holy cow swim and run and no pain. I hope on the Elliptical for a bit of time and start to giggle... I am so excited and realize I swam an 800 and ran a little over 2 miles. That is a long, long way from IM. But at least I am closer than I was yesterday.

Tuesday wake up and asses the body...not residual pain. Good think I did the Yoga for Inflexible Peeps DVD last night to work out any issues. So like a little kid so excited I head for the gym. Different one this time....real swimming pool with real swimmers. I swim 1200 and all is good. Run 25 minutes and all is good! yes, we are taking baby steps.

Torrential rain and a trip to Palm Springs halted any plans for riding. Had to work for a few days to keep feeding this expensive addiction I have called triathlon. Snuck in a stunning run this AM. Woke up in Palm Springs to crystal clear skies, snow capped mountains and treated myself to a 30 minute run before the work day started. It was golden.

Not going to be a week of record training hours or volume but a week of easing back into the normal routine of swim/bike/run!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Has been a week....

Can you tell training is not stellar....can you tell all is not great!!! Don't we just love to blog and talk and write when all is wonderful. Nothing better than posting about awesome rides and tremendous runs and how tired but how great we feel.

I know, I winging. But well, it's my blog and this is the one place I can really winge. My friends are awesome and so supportive but let's face it, after a few weeks of injury depression, you have to button it up or risk losing your training partners. Since I am only riding these days, I need my buddies and need companionship on some of the rides. I do love riding solo some times. Well me and the iPod. Jamming to tunes, reflecting on what is going is great, but after 3 hours, hello, I need someone to yammer on with.

Quick health swimming or running this week. But, I did see my GP, Sports Med Dr and Orthopedic, had ART and Acupuncture. Working at this from all angles indeed. The good, no great news is that my shoulder has the first signs of relief since the injury. I can move it most of the time without pain! The Sports Dr fears the shoulder has a labral tear which would prevent me from racing anytime soon but since it I can move it some, I don't think this is the case. Moving without pain is major, usually lifting or certain ROM would send shooting pains down my arm. I have an MRI next week but do hope that by the time I have it I will have been able to swim a bit. I have PT scheduled as well and will surely stick with that. So blah, blah, blah.....

The good news is I can ride....and boy did I ride. I logged a lot of miles on the bike this week. Amazing how easy it can be when all I am doing is riding, yoga and strength training. So the bike fitness is good. I know it does not transfer to run and and swim and that will be a slow process. But I am hoping to test the waters soon.

Long weekend.....yee haw! Started with a great ride on Saturday. Rode with a big group- too big for my taste actually. A lot of waiting and when are we leaving etc.... although once we rolled it was great. Group split up and Kitchen Creek is always a favorite for me. We skipped Julian which was a bummer but that means we also missed Engineers Road which was a good thing- did not feel like crawling up that again. Beautiful weather and fun day indeed.

We made a major furniture purchase....big deal in our household- happens about once a decade. Very, very cool couch- big and sooo comfy. Zen is NOT allowed and he is a bit disgruntled. Rocky cannot get up so he does not even try. Finally a space our family can hang out. It's not like we are piled in front of the TV ever night, in fact we do not own one. But we do like to watch movies on the weekends on the big flat screen monitor and now it is process...drag the futon in from my office, get settled etc. Now we can all pile in together! Well that is the idea anyway. Maybe with all this rain, we will have an excuse to watch some movies.

Sunday I snuck in an early ride, knowing the rain was coming and I wanted to ride when I could. And then it was JD's lacrosse - pounded 1 game and won the other. That rolled into a Chargers Party, not that I am big or even a small football fan, but it is a great excuse to hang with good friends and enjoy the afternoon. Braman was not up to par so he stayed home and the kids and I hung at the party.....met some cool people, good food and fun.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Getting a little perspective....

1- Triathlon is for fun
2- This is not how I earn a living
3- My family is far more important than
4- I am grateful for overall health, no major illnesses in my or my loved ones....

Okay that being said....I am still not happy out being injured. But in the big really is not a big deal. We could have life or death issues at hand, we could be in a financial crisis....instead we just returned from 2 glorious weeks in Australia and it is 75 degrees outside in January.

What is on my plate is riding and lots of it. The one thing I can do pain free!! Hooray, but the downside is that I have to back off the power and ride very moderately. Even though there is no pain when I ride hard, KP has convinced me the beating and wear on the tendons and muscles must be manifesting in my hip. Riding hard MAY be delaying or prohibiting the healing of my hip. So I tried it my way and hip is not I will be riding alone for the most part to ensure I am going easy enough. I simply cannot ride behind my buddies and stick to my power plan- I know it, so why risk it. John and I had a great ride on Saturday....he dropped me on the climbs. And well, it totally sucked. I kept telling myself I am sticking to my plan, I could ride harder and faster....then about 30+ people rode by me at various time going up Del Dios. The mantra in my head was so loud surely they could hear me. I was not wearing Since everyone was dropping me. I was totally in control until the final climb when I came across 2 guys and they were huffing and puffing and asked if they could sit on my wheel. I say sure and the manged to spike the power and finish the climb. I soon recognized my erroneous ways and corrected the effort.

As we hit the coast Braman says this is usually the point in the ride when I am hanging on and can only think about getting home and I feel great. Between his new compact crank and the reduced efforts he was full of energy and wanted to keep going. Nope, I resisted and we headed home.

It was great to be out there and nice to have the option to be riding.

Showered and changed and then off for a massage. Now this is how to spend a Saturday! It only got better from there with 2 sets of good friends coming for dinner. So good to catch up and some stimulating conversation as well. Kids + parents and it was great fun. So, so appreciative for the very cool people in our life.

Rode again today....alone as Braman was moving very slowly and I wanted to get in a short ride before Yoga. Yoga stretch, no Bikram today. I love this Sun AM class, a bit of work, but a lot of long stretches that are mildly uncomfortable but very necessary.

So the plan is.....ride, ride, yoga, ride. Volume of riding but low efforts. Not going to try and run for a week. Dr appt Wed and hope they will do an MRI of my shoulder and hip. Hip feels good until I take a few steps running. Shoulder hurts with certain movements. Hoping they are both close to healing.....will see. Have panicked and re planned my race season 4-5 times. No decisions have to be made now or even in the next few weeks. The good news is it is January and I have options.....not having to race in 90 days takes a lot of the stress off. As much as I love Oceanside, there are other races and Oceanside will be there next year as well. Good perspective, my goal is to keep it in focus.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Yoga is not the end all cure...

So I have done yoga 2 times this week and am off to my 3rd (not bikram today) The reason for doing yoga is to cure my hip. Come on 2x it is not healed.....impatient? Maybe just a tad.

Aggravated, impatient, frustrated....pretty much all the feelings that roll around my head when I am injured. It has been so long, I have gladly forgotten what it feels like. I see people running and immediately analyze them- they should be smiling, thankful they are running as far as they like, take the grimace off the face and be happy dammit!! So yes, I can run 20 minutes - woohoo! Well not even 20 minutes - today it was 10. Going to be pretty darn hard if not impossible to do an IM in May if I cannot run. Right or swim- shoulder is another issue. The swimming I am less stressed about and that will come around faster, but running a marathon. It looks like IMSG is 50/50 and possibly even Oceanside.

Arghhhh.....namaste off to yoga :)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


Well I did it! I ventured out to Bikram Yoga despite all the naysayers, warnings and negativity. So I went in expecting the absolute worst. And sometimes that is a good way to approach things. So Bikram is hot yoga...I walk in and holy cow, it was fricking hot and humid. Would have been great training for Kona.

Maybe this will be me soon......

The teacher is a fellow triathlete and she is great. I settle in and we begin. First 30 min was not too bad and I am getting the hang of it. I take a little break and drink, guzzle water...Wendy reminds the group and the new comers of Bikram etiquette, only water breaks when the teacher offers, otherwise "we" break rhythm. I am thinking, would you rather me break rhythm or flat out die lady? But I smile and continue. The website says do not eat 2 hours prior. So I did not eat. Well this is a morning class and 1 hour into the class I am starving, seeing stars and seriously thinking of passing out. Gee, wonder how it would go over if I had whipped out a Power Bar and noisily opened the wrapper and started noshing down....not good I imagine. Just when I think I am doing pretty well I hear- "look in the mirror and you should see your feet creeping over your head....right! " And then she says, and "Julie try to get those feet off the ground, there you go, one inch at a time" So the bendable buddy next to me has her feet creeping over her head, I can see them in the mirror and mine are mere inches off the floor, sweat pouring off of me and I am far from smiling. Holy was hot, I did get an amazing stretch and I did it!

As we are leaving she says see you tomorrow....over my dead body. I will be gladly riding Great Western Loop and NOT complaining.

So I leave Yoga guzzling every liquid I can find in my car, head to Costco and eat every possible sample and still have to open the dried fruit in the car. Once I recovered, around dinner time, I did feel noticeably better, looser and glad I went.

So today I happily got up, nearly slept all night- only 1 hour of sleeplessness- jet lag is nearly gone, and headed to East County. We did a little pre-ride with R on the flats and picked up B for the loop. The plan was to head to Descanso but nearing the top of Lyons Valley I knew that was not going to be happening for me. The 3 week sabbatical from training + the increase in cookies and wine and then the 80 mile welcome home ride were all piled on my back and in my legs. So J and I gladly turned left and descended. Why- because we could! Coach had 3 hour ride today and I was sticking to that plan. It will be soon enough that I see the 5-6 hour ride and then I don't have a choice. So we rode back and saved what energy was left.

Thank goodness for the organic peanut butter/chocolate chip cookies I had made and brought with me. Something about iced coffee and cookies- really way to make things all better. I had a conference call, so I pulled under a shady tree with my feet out the window and conversed for an hour before heading home to do some more work. Really- could my job be any worse??

And now it is 6:20, John is in bed. Jet lag is killing him, he was up at midnight and decided to go to work at 1am and came home at noon. He stayed up until 5 or so and could not manage. He says to wake him at 7, will see how that goes. Especially because I am planning to walk the dogs and be in bed by 7. You would think I had a big training day of a 6 hour ride + a run. Ironman is a long way away....

Monday, January 4, 2010

Reality hits hard....

Back from vacation and it really is a bummer....depressed household last night as the kids prepped for school and we did out 100th load of laundry, cleaned up and the house is still a mess. Ugh, would rather be on the boat and hanging with the family.

Flight home was painful....leaving at 11am vs 10pm (which we did when we flew over) makes it hard to get good sleep. Thanks to on demand movies and TV we were all in a hypnotized state of media. I start with the more intellectual movies, check out a few documentaries and then as I get tired the intellectual content of the films go down rapidly and I find myself watching 500 Days of Summer. All About Steve and digressing to TV shows. We did have the fortune of having 2 New Years Eve's. The first on one OZ we slept through but shortly after we crossed the Intl Date Line we gained a day back and did the countdown on the plane. No champagne but many of the flight attendants were sporting NY's hats and blinking tiara's and headbands. Quite festive actually.

We landed at LAX 6am and bleary eyed....managed customs and baggage- all the bags arrived and out good natured gate agent in Sydney kindly did not charge us the $300 for John's bike. So it was not at $600 venture for the bike, only $300. Which is good since the epic riding he had hoped for did not come to fruition.

We are rolling at 7:30 on empty freeways and in serious search of a Starbucks. Caffeine in hand off we went and were home to see the puppies by 10am. They were soooo happy to see us and no attitude for being gone so long. Other than needing a serious bath- they were perfect.

Going through the mail and all the Christmas cards was fun and a great way to delay the inevitable. Riley went straight to bed, soon followed by JD. I was feeling good and started cleaning, went for a short run- which was derailed due to my deteriorating body - painful hip, and did some food shopping. The usually overflowing food source was barren. At the tail end of shopping I bonked, hit the wall and barely made it home and headed to bed. Ah glorious sleep.

The gallon of water I drank after the flight caught up with me and I woke up 90 minutes later out of a drooling, REM dead sleep. I forced myself to get up and try to get back on CA time.

Saturday morning we were up and out the door by 7:15 to meet some friends in Pine Valley for a ride to Julian. No better way to shake jet lag than a long hilly ride. It was sensational- sunny, clear and beautiful. From Mt Laguna (6000ft) we could see downtown, Catalina Island and Pt Loma. Never seen it so clear. The ride was great, pie in Julian well earned and my legs felt terrific. Nothing like a taper for a big ride - or that is how it felt anyway.

Fully expected to crash hard Sat night but no....body was on Ozzie time and I was wide awake at 11, 12, 1am....caved and took a Tylenol PM and crashed hard then. Dragged myself up at 7am to try and get on schedule. NY Resolution- Yoga. So I went at 10:30- a perfect class for me- Yoga Stretch- not too complicated or fast moving and was what I needed. KP did some major work on my shoulder and hip and made some progress- finally! He was able to manipulate the shoulder and I had full ROM pain free which means it must be muscle/tendon related vs joint and that we can work with, same for the hip.

By last night I was feeling noticeable relief in both I am feeling a bit more optimistic, Riding on Saturday I was thinking I may have to bail on IMSG - if I cannot run or swim at all now and who knows for how long, how can I be fit and ready to race May 1. KP talked me down off my panic ledge and we are taking this one week at a time. If I can slowly, SLOWLY, is the key word (or so I am told) get back in water and running next week and SLOWLY build up, all will be fine. So I am listening to KP 100% and trusting his guidance to get me back on track and training again full time soon!

As for work....yes my turn to face reality as well. Time to get back at it again to support this crazy addiction called Triathlon.