Monday, July 29, 2013

Back to school....

4 days.....40 hours of training and I am excited!! Day 1-2 Natural Running Clinic by Newton Running.  Good stuff..... back to the basics- running is landing on your fore or mid-foot or even your heel- the issue is over striding and landing with your foot in front of you.  Land with your foot under your body and you are golden!  Easy...well yes with some simple drills, feedback and a commitment. guess is over striding.  After fully understanding the bio-mechanics of the body and running it is easy to spot and not all that hard to correct with a motivated subject.  I am sponsored by Zoot and love Zoots...they make some great shoes with minimal heel stack - so you can find "less is more" shoes by other manufacturers....

Shoes.... less is better.  No need to run in Vibrams but really- heel stack, big shoes not helping.  Do your shoes fit?  take out the insole, stand on it and if any part of your foot hangs over- you have a problem.   We learned how to run efficiently, drills to instill
efficient running, how to videotape and critique and ultimately help others.  So much fun..... running is NOT hard okay it can be really hard but done correctly with a good plan, should not be painful.

So next investment..... mini iPad and ready to set up my run assessments!  We practiced on each other then randomly videotaped others to practice. Yeah!!!

I love coaching swimming..... but am super excited to help people with running!!!

I have to take my test, submit a video and then I can add "Certified Natural Running Coach" to my list of training!!! 

Monday, July 22, 2013

I am stuck on band aids....cause

I am uncoordinated.  There is a reason I was a swimmer- swimmers are klutzes, don't need eye-hand or eye-foot coordination (although I did manage to break my heel doing a flip turn- so not sure what coordination that requires)

I cannot remember the last time I did not put on a minimum of one band aid per day.  This leg infection (which is healing) is 3 weeks and running and I took a graceful dive running on the trails last week and that requires 1 big band aid.  I cut my thumb dicing tomatoes and that is one more.

I wish I could sport but band aids but cute does not stay on. As a band aid connoisseur these days I tell you tough strips are the only way to go.  They stay on in the water and for days....although once in the water you have to change it as a wet band aid is breeding ground for bacteria.  But they stay on.  So I have boxes of these of many sizes upstairs, downstairs, in my office, in my car, in my swim bag.

I have band aid tan lines...that tells you how long I have been wearing band aids.

I wish my life was all out band aids but it frankly is shut a sh*t storm right now that band aids are the best thing to focus on!

Well gotta go change my band aids before I get rolling today.....

Friday, July 19, 2013

You just never know....

My race prep for Vineman was different...really different.  Going back to March 17 with a pulled hamstring. No running 6 weeks and then did short and fast but not back to back days  Raced ITU in May and ran a great 10k at 44:51 (which is fast for me)  While I was not running I started Crossfit 3-4 days a week as well as CorePower Yoga. I think the yoga help rehab the hamstring better than anything else.  Soon I was running and riding regularly but was committed to CF and had to sacrifice many bike and run workouts due to serious muscle soreness.

Trying bike intervals following a day at CF of squats to failure does not work.... I had a few rides that my power was low, really low and I just went with what I had for the day.  Once the hamstring was healed I ran a min of 30 min a day for 30 days.  This was interesting as some days I was so smashed and sore from CF that it was hard but I found that with consistency the running on really sore legs became easier.  I ran "long" each weekend in the trails ( when I say long I mean 90min-1:45)  and I did trails because I was sore and did not want to see the horrifically slow pace.  And Mako and John like trails.

I did have a solid month of riding and running 5 weeks out and was feeling better about the race.  3 weeks prior to Vineman I stopped Crossfit entirely.  I really wanted to lay down some solid rides and runs and with Crossfit you just never know what you are going to get.

Pre race dinner- fun to see C from SD 
All was in check until 2 weeks prior when a small precancerous spot that was burned off suddenly swelled up and had a ring the size of an orange.  I went on antibiotics (Cipro) and suffered major leg cramps so the switched me to another killer antibiotic (assuming the infection was MRSA) and that one made me sick. The culture showed staff infection not MRSA so yet another drug and I decided to try the strongest bacitracin and manage it topically.  Meanwhile Mom falls and breaks her hip and my life is upside down. My mouth breaks out in sores and I am going downhill fast.... Taper - you got it.

My taper was 7-9 hours at the hospital with a few hot yoga sessions and few swims. I recall riding and running but don't know what I did the 8 days prior. It is still a blur. Thanks to Billy's daughter coming down we were able to go to Vineman.

We arrived at our VRBO in Sebastopol on Thursday night with Lisa, Kelly and Donne and it was heaven!  Cool temps and we loved our tiny house amongst the apple orchard. Sebastopol is a groovy town with great organic food and definitely a hippy feel.  They even have a Whole Foods..we found great food and the 5 of us were super compatible in the house.   Friday and Saturday we slept in, swam, did a bit of riding and running, registered and had zero stress.  Great friends in a cool place. Love this sport!!! Perfect housemates and it was so enjoyable.

Come race day I was "whatever"  My wave was 8:24 - wave #24 so I had a lot of time to chill in transition and instead of being nervous I had a great time with John and cheering on everyone I knew.

Breakfast 1 and 1/2 pure white bagels (no fiber thank you) toasted with Nuttzo   - 600 calories at 6am +  Osmo Pre- Load (I also had 2 bottles on Saturday- 1 mid day and 1 before bed)

Best award ever! La Crema chardonnay!
Sipped on a bottle of Osmo and Cadence while I waited for my wave.

Finally it was go time!  Did a nice warm up and was ready to go. Gun goes off and I went for it...and within seconds there was a girl sprinting ahead of me and I could not stay on her feet. So I swam my own swim - strong and steady.  27:51 Not bad considering my new swim training. 4 swims per week- 30 min swims.  750 warm up. 250 hard.  10x100 hard.  100 ez 200 hard and out.   2nd out of the swim.

 Bike- this course is rollers and it took me a while to find my groove - lot of traffic of bikes + M30-34 were behind me.  I did not stress, did not really focus on power, just had a good time and made sure my HR was not going crazy. I never felt great but did feel terrible either. I leap frogged with a guy for 30 miles and that is always fun.  Dropped him on Chalk Hill and never saw him again- until the finish and he came up and chatted.  Bike: 2:43- not stellar but decent.  2nd place.  Nutrition: 2x bottles with Osmo, Cadence and Carbo Pro 250C + 2 bite size bonk breakers (250C) + 2 bottles of water.

Run....I took off feeling good, a bit down knowing I was in 2nd and the chances of me catching someone who lead the swim and bike were slim.  Garmin did not ever find Satellites I hate my Garmin 610!  So I was watching HR.  About .5 miles in a guy goes by and says hi.  It is Dr Dave from Scripps Masters and he is coached by KP as well.  We ran along chatting and knocked off the miles.  I was holding 7:40's pretty comfortably which was the goal for a 1:40.  But around mile 9 I started to fatigue and that 1+ mile hill just did me in.   I realized at that point I had only taken 1 gel and a few tiny sips of Gatorade and water.  Calorie deficient for sure. I walked through the next station and drank a full cup of Gatorade and took a gu.  At this point DD was a bit ahead and I just tried to keep him in sight.   I was slowing but doing okay and having a lot of fun.  The last mile is downhill and I was cruising...... I was sure I was in 2nd only to find out I passed 1st somewhere on the run. I was positive someone was on my heels so I sprinted in..... Great to have John there cheering me on and to see so many good friends out there. Run was 1:47. Definitely a bit slow- but  this is not a flat course and well I'll take it.  Cannot complain about an AG win.

Immediately felt great....hoped to break 5:00 but not today. So many fun friends in the finisher's area and it again made me realize that the people and camaraderie is what I really love about this sport. So many cool people - here we are in Wine Country, racing and having fun!!!

So....I took the Vegas slot.  IM 70.3 World Championships here I come. 9/8!
Post race wine tasting!  

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Race gets in the way sometimes

 My bags are not packed, I am not ready to go....and we are leaving 7am tomorrow. Did I mention I am not at home nor will not be home until 6am.  You just never know.  Race week.... pre- race massage - cancelled, ART - cancelled ... life sometimes gets in the way.  On Friday on the way to coach at Ventura Cove my mom called to tell me she was at the Dr with a broken hip....Holy F!  U tun on my way.

I digress.....she did this the previous night at home, crawled around the floor to pull herself up to the rolling office chair and into bed. Took a Vicoden and managed to sleep. Awoke in pain but not enough  to 1- call me, 2- call what does anyone do with a broken hip? She got out Billy's walker, got in the car and had her hair done and THAN went to the Dr.   Where does my will to do Ironman come from?  Gee I wonder.

John and JD beat me to the Dr and suddenly the poor woman who drove herself in had 3 family members. The Dr has asked her if she had anyone local to help her?   argh..... We loaded her up and drove to the hospital and 5+ hours later she was processed and in a room.  Suddenly my open water swim and hot yoga did not matter so much.  After a restless night I was back at 6 to see her in pre-op and met her surgeon who thankfully was terrific and opted for 3 bolts vs a partial replacement-  he said15 minutes and he is done but really it takes a lot longer..... but by 9:20 he was back chatting to me and all went well. Silly me had my bike in the car thinking I'll take a quick spin.... not so much.  I worried and stressed in the surgery waiting room. By 11 she was in her room and doing great - starving in fact!

The next few days are a blur - hospital, home, hospital, a few hot yoga sessions and suddenly Vineman prep was out the window.  I am thankful she rebounded so quickly and thankful to be here- with Billy in a home I am not sure what she would have done.  I also realized I stood around a lot, hospitals are freezing, Kaiser has a Cafe Calabria coffee kiosk and their coffee is really good- and I drank a lot of it!!!   My mouth broke out in stress sores (thank you to my athlete who phone in the script), my infected site on my leg was red and scary (thank you to my mom for prescription topical bacitracin) to avoid the 3rd round of antibiotics and thank you to John for managing the dogs and to my kids for relieving me at the hospital and just listening.

Really it has been 5 days and feels like a long time- I am a wimp I know.... she is home and that is easier on me but not on her. She is interdependent and it is hard to be so with a walker.   I was gone most of today working, getting my car ready etc..... Thankfully Billy's daughter had a trip planned (arriving tomorrow) so we can still go to Vineman!

For now..I wish Mom speedy recovery.  As for Vineman...the race that was in question anyway - why in question

1- I am my own coach. I am confident in my coaching others but me well...not so sure and maybe it is because the coach is the one who is the athletes cheerleader and can remind you why you are ready. Me.... well lets see Crossfit, hot yoga, did I ride enough? was the Coronado 15k smart...who knows and well I really don't care.  My gaol with Vineman was to train differently and not stress!

2- I am exhausted...I fell asleep at the disgusting tire place today in a chair while I thought I was working on my laptop.

3- My legs hurt.... not sure why. Other than a lot of standing, walking and pacing.

4- My great race weight is not so great.... I ate a lot of the wrong foods for the last 6 days-  oh well...

What is good.... I get to reconnect with my husband!  We are going to a part of the state I love.  4 Teammates are racing and 2 of my athletes.  So many San Diego friends are racing... and bottom line this is a vacation with a 5+hour adventure on Sunday.  #nopressureracing

Thursday, July 4, 2013

9 days to Vineman

Tapering is hard for many of us crazy addicted endurance athletes.  Being tired and complaining is easy, pushing the limits is fun but tapering is scary....why?
 1 - OMG I may lose all my fitness in 2 weeks (not), I may gain a lot of weight, I won't see my friends (training is my only social life) ...the list goes on.  I have been managing well, at least I think so, being self coached.  I have backed off when I was not feeling it, taken rest days to recovery and if anything maybe under trained.   But we will see.

I digress..... I raced SDIT 2 weeks prior to Vineman which was a good decision. I raced tired- after a 17+ hour week and managed a good race.  But then I was thinking now what..... its funny I am coaching an athlete who is racing Vineman and did SDIT and I had not problem confidently writing her training plan - so why not mine?   In any case I decided to run the Coronado 15K on July 4, 9 days pre- Vineman and 3 days post SDIT.  In between I was flexible.  Monday I was feeling SDIT so I opted for ez swim only.  Tuesday I did an ez run and felt okay but not great and went to yoga.  Wednesday I planned a 3 hour ride with some intensity but I had to listened to my body- it was not feeling it.  So I backed off, fell off the back and told myself that pushing the efforts would only hurt Vineman.  Then came the 15K today  my legs are stiff and I was not I started running and the PE (perceived effort was high for the pace) so I ran by effort and not pace and it was funny around mile 3 I was feeling better and assumed I was running slowly but quite the opposite I was running 7:00 pace (which is quite good for me) and I was reasonably comfortable so I went with with it.  I began passing people and was really motivated - around mile 6 the little voice in me suggested I back off, save it for Vineman..... so I did.   Hoping the momentum I was feeling today is there next Sunday!  Okay I was 4th by 30 seconds.....argh...coulda, shoulda,.. but did not!

Now....steep taper I believe.  My legs are feeling the run and I need to shed this fatigue.  Friday will be swim, hot yoga.... then active recovery Sat and Sunday -massage and re- asses Monday.  The fitness is in the bank so now it is staying sane and finding some spring in my legs. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Local Racing.....SDIT

Sunday was San Diego International - one of the longest running SD Triathlons.  It seems 90% of the racers were from the Tri Club - such great fun racing with so many friends and acquaintances.
The race itself is an odd distance....short swim 1000 meters not ideal for me,  short bike - 18 miles  not ideal for me  and a 10K run- long in comparison....not not ideal for me.  But I toed the line anyway to race with so many of my team mates and friends.  I got beat by 30 seconds....  if only the swim was longer.   But I digress... even while suffering for 1:50 I did a lot of here it goes.  Please don't take this as arrogance on my part - as a coach and 7 years of racing I have learned a new things and only want to share

- DON'T line up front and center of the swim and look back and say "now you better not swim over me"  WTF  Don't position yourself front and center unless you are fast or don't mind being swum over.  Thank you Liz for speaking your mind!  

- PLEASE have your saddle height checked...I saw 10-20 people looking like Shriners on bikes- knees poking in the air due to the saddle being so low.  You don't have to lay out a lot of money for a bike fit, although I highly recommend everyone have one done, just take the bike to your local bike shop and ask a knowledgeable person in the shop to take a quick look at your position.  Trust me you are losing power and risking injury

- Have someone watch you ride....I see so many people riding with their their legs bowed out. Try to keep your knees in close to your top tube. They should almost brush the top tube and look almost "knock-kneed." Your knees create wind resistance, so keep them in. Watch a slow motion video of the time trials in the Tour de France, and you will see the top cyclists keeping their knees tucked in.

- Power trumps aerodynamics.  This is not Ironman Arizona where you need to race aero the entire time....You actually get the most power sitting up as high as you can.  Come out of your bars and use your power when climbing.

This is a short race- stand if you need to.  We have higher power while standing (you can take advantage of your upper body weight pushing down on the pedals), Note you use 10 to 12% more energy and it is more work for your core and back muscles as you pull up on the unweighted pedal.   Again (this is not a 70.3 or an Ironman) 

- Practice cornering and holding your line.... you should not drift over an entire traffic lane when cornering - chances are many others are cornering as well- if we all hold our line, we an all ride together.  Bike handling skills are important when racing.

- Ride on the right side of the road.  Pass on the left

- When mounting your bike out of T1, try not to stop just over the bike mount line front and center...either jump on and ride or move to the side.  There are others  behind you.  

- If you are going walk from the swim to T1 move to the side, people behind you maybe running. 

Okay I am done.....if anyone has questions or would like some help please contact me directly.....Believe me I am still learning and am open to opinions - these are merely my observations.

It was a fun many Nytro Women racing and we finished off the race with lunch at Stone Brewery in Liberty Station- clearly the place to be.  Massive place, beautiful grounds and lots of outside dining.   Great fun indeed!!!