Sunday, July 7, 2013

Carp TriTraining - 8 wk update

Training for my first tri. The Carpinteria Triathlon on Sep 29th. (And concurrently the Nov 9 SB Marathon)

Started unofficially on May 11th with a 21.1 mile ride.

The first three weeks after the long bike ride I did two activities every single day: biking, running, swimming.

The next five weeks I've followed a schedule from

In total since May I have spent 40 hours either biking or running and logged 305 bike miles and 102 running miles. (Not including the YTD 102 Jan-Apr Miles).

Riding a bike (a mountain bike) has been a lot of fun. This has been the biggest surprise because I have never before enjoyed bike riding - much. I rode the entire course (almost) still gotta get up the entire Ortega Ridge and Toro Canyon. (.5 mile ride is a killer at the end). At least there are little surprises left. (I hope). I'm going to borrow a road bike. I'm excited that Michelle R. responded to my post today when I finally set out to ask to borrow one. I hear that a road bike it's much better for a tri but I'm a bit concerned about making the transition to a different bike - only cause it's different.

Running has not yet been too challenging because they've been 3 and 5 milers. Yesterday I had a surprisingly good 5 miler - which leads to the second part of WHY I would do this. (The first part, because a tri is on the bucket list.) The second, because a tri is excellent cross training especially leading to a full. I don't think I could do a full training alone - my left knee definitely feels worn a bit when I push it too much. (eek).

I've switched out the olympic tri training schedule run part for an 18 week marathon plan beginning last week which should fall nicely into the other schedule except for the two weeks leading up to the tri which include the 18 and 20 milers. Oops. I'll cross that bridge when I get there is kind of my thought for now. I did get to run with dolphins one day! They were at very close distance from shore maybe 20 feet?

The five miler days takes me on a trip above the Carp bluffs overlooking the rookery.

I've had a chance to do only one track work out - because I'd rather work out in the morning than at night.  (Especially on run days only which are one workout days by design). There's something about being on the track that makes it impossible to do an easy workout on it. I really ought to plan at least one track day a week.

Swimming has been probably the least fun. I've done it for the most part at 24 hour fitness. The upside - now : One more foursquare Mayorship.
I did go for one ocean swim - and that was not very cold! The seaweed grossed me out a little and it took me a while to get past the feeling like I was going nowhere, fast - and get a rhythm of sorts down.

Swimming is hard because it is boring and when it is not boring, I find it hard to control my mind for so long (up to an hour at a time). One more sucky part: No opportunity for pictures! Also, I will have to figure out the wetsuit part...eek.

All in all, the first 8 weeks have been fun. Accident and injury free so far - knock on wood. I am 12 weeks out from race day - so I'm sure I'll have plenty of time to master a road bike, Toro Canyon, Ortega Ridge, cold water and faster 10ks. I've double checked my calendar that I did not double book a wedding on race weekend (as has happened before - doh). This race training comes at a good time when I have very little else imposing a routine or balance in my life - so I'm thankful everyday to work toward something.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Pre Tri Training: Week 2

Week 2 luckily was again painless. I'm greatly enjoying switching things up. Below is last weeks activity log. This next week through Friday is another happy go lucky - pre training week and then come Sat the 1st I will begin my first official week of #triTraining. The goal for this upcoming week in addition to not missing a work out is to drink more water at least 2 water bottles per day. 

Mon 5.20
Bike | 9.4 mi | 53:18min | 427 cals | Avg HR 145 |Max HR 177 | IZ 39:53 | Above 3:16 | Below 10:09
Swim | x (about 1k) | 30:04min | 211 cals | Avg HR 135 |Max HR 145 | IZ 3:41 | Above x | Below 26:23

Tue 5.21
Run | 2.9mi. | 37:31min | 296 cals | Avg HR 143 |Max HR 175 | IZ 18:27 | Above 3:49 | Below 13:43
Swim | x (about 1k) | 30:17min | 221 cals | Avg HR 138 |Max HR 155 | IZ 10:14 | Above x | Below 20:09

Wed 5.22
Bike | 12.8 mi | 1:11:24min | 526 cals | Avg HR 145 |Max HR 203 | IZ 38:59 | Above 3:25 | Below 29:00

Thu 5.23
Swim | x (about 1.5k) | 45:23min | 274 cals | Avg HR 127 |Max HR 152 | IZ 8:49 | Above x | Below 36:34

Fri 5.24
Bike | 9.4 mi | 55:40min | 428 cals | Avg HR 141 |Max HR 171 | IZ 25:36 | Above 1:07 | Below 28:57
Swim | x (about 1k) | 28:06min | 193 cals | Avg HR 135 |Max HR 145 | IZ 2:44 | Above x | Below 25:22

Sat 5.25
Run | 2.9mi. | 38:49min | 315 cals | Avg HR 145 |Max HR 179 | IZ 17:23 | Above 7:16 | Below 14:10
Bike | 3.6 mi | 19:49min | 136 cals | Avg HR 133 |Max HR 165 | IZ 5:35 | Above x | Below 14:14

Sun 5.26
Run | 2.9mi. | 37:29min | 277 cals | Avg HR 142 |Max HR 202 | IZ 19:19 | Above 2:14 | Below 15:56 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Tri Dilemma...

A tri is on my bucket list (which is probably why this blog's name ends with "and other...").  I'm ready for a couple of big athletic accomplishments in part because the achievement is something you claim forever - yet the training process always makes you better. 

Here's the dilemma. Nov 3rd I'll run the Santa Barbara International Marathon (my 3rd), however, I will also be training for the Carpinteria Triathlon which takes place Sep 29th. The only question that remains is, which distance should I train for? 
Sprint Tri: .5K Swim | 15K Bike | 5K RunOlympic Course: 1.5K Swim | 40K Bike | 10K Run
A couple of weeks ago after I had decided to shoot for the short race I went out on a bike ride to see where my biking fitness level was at. I put in an enjoyable 21 miles. Late that night, I looked up the race distance only to find that the Sprint Course is only about 9 miles. A few days later I did the 9 mile course (the exact course) and although I can improve my time, there was little insurmountable about it.
My plan for May 13 - June 10th is to just put in time doing all three exercises - not too much or too little, but an enjoyable amount. From there I will begin a 16 week tri training and during week 5 I will switch out the running component for the 16 week marathon training plan. The main challenges about any size tri is that I train in a pool not in open water - but I'll try a few night moves (short summer swim/run events) to get ready. The pool I use is at my gym and it's only 50ft so needless to say I have to keep my mind engaged in completing the repetitive laps. Another challenge is my chunky mountain bike - I know it's good enough for the sprint, I don't know if that's also the case for the Olympic distance but I presume it might be - since I rode 20 mi. with no problems. Lastly, I have never done the 3 events together - obviously. Oh and here's the magical thing, I found my dead heart rate monitor and just happened to have a new battery the right size for it, so I was able to record and observe my times from the get go!

Week one was good and below is a log (mainly for myself) and any other interested party. 
Every work out will be listed as follows:

Exercise | Distance | Time | Cals | Avg Heart Rate | Max Heart Rate | In Zone | Above Zone | Below Zone

Mon 5.13
Swim | x (about 1k) | 33:00 min | 201 cals | 
Run | 2.6 mi. | 28:03 | 305 cals | Avg HR 172 |Max HR 187 | IZ 3:16 

Tue 5.14
Bike | 7 mi | 42:25 min | 333 cals | Avg HR 140 |Max HR 174 | IZ 8:49 | Above 1:40 | Below 33:14 
Swim | x (about 1k) | 30:14 min | 206 cals | Avg HR 134 |Max HR 159 | IZ 7:28 | Above x | Below 22.46 

Wed 5.15
Run | 2.9 mi. | 34:50 | 335 cals | Avg HR 160 |Max HR 186 | IZ 10:19 | Above 17:10 | Below 7:21 
Swim | x | 30:44 min | 248 cals | Avg HR 147 |Max HR 158 | IZ 17:30 | Above x | Below 13:14

Thu 5.16
Swim | x (about 1k) | 30:18 min | 216 cals | Avg HR 136 |Max HR 151 | IZ 9:42 | Above x | Below 20:36

Fri 5.17
Run | 2.9 mi. | 37:31 | 333 cals | Avg HR 141 |Max HR 174 | IZ 17:49 | Above 2:13 | Below 12:50 

Sat 5.18
Bike | 9.4 mi | 56:10 min | 444 cals | Avg HR 143 |Max HR 172 | IZ 42:12 | Above 5:20 | Below 8:38
Swim | x (about 1k) | 30:14 min | 208 cals | Avg HR 134 |Max HR 149 | IZ 16:45 | Above x | Below 13:29

Sun 5.19
Run | 2.9 mi. | 36:05 | 289 cals | Avg HR 144 |Max HR 176 | IZ 14:28 | Above 10:30 | Below 11:07

I want a challenge and not be bored but I also love to push my which should I train for?

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Post Boston

I saw the first post about the Boston (Marathon) attack on Facebook and was confused. I immediately tuned into the streaming radio coverage from Boston on my iPad.

First I worried about folks I knew that were out there. Next, I worried about the people affected. Lastly and in the most common way in which we experience empathy, I imagined what it would be like to be there.

The first explosion happened 4:09:52 after the start of the race - had I for some reason been running Boston I thought, I'd be an hour or more from the finish line - but my mom -who is my biggest support in the sport - would just be arriving at the finish line, as she has in each of my last 9 big races.

I couldn't correctly begin to imagine the chaos and fear of being there. Unlike in many other instances of national tragedies, where I can feel complex feelings, in this case, I only felt sad for the entire occurrence - and perhaps it's because I could imagine being there so much more than other situations.

During the day I wondered if the perpetrator was maybe a runner or close to the running community? Who else but a runner - even a bad runner like myself - would know what Boston means to the sport?! Heck, when a runner speaks the word 'Boston' s/he only refers to The Marathon most of the time. Boston to any serious runner (in commitment not necessarily in achievement) at some point has set their sight on qualifying for Boston.

This morning I went for my first run in a couple of weeks.

(My last run was a sunrise run in Maui)

While I was on my run today I thought about the people there. Starting with runners - although we're not all of a same mold, marathoners have characteristics we share and these include:

Passion: Something drives us. Whatever it is, we have an endless supply of it.
Determination: Defeat is unacceptable to us
Realism and Optimism: We know how to gauge danger in a way, but hope to push the limits to the very edge.
We know what it's like to be alone. In order to race a marathon you needed to have trained for miles and miles alone. This means, that marathoners, I believe are thinkers because with or without music at some point you're alone with your thoughts and they carry you for hours.

Each one of us, then has these fascinating traits - mind you, I have learned that your biggest strengths, when magnified is your biggest weakness so at often we're seen as obstinate, dangerous and relentless - but hey! Additionally many of us have either willingly garnered support of friends and family, or reluctantly, but they - them - those around us that come to watch, are lit and somehow energized by any of those components. All of these thoughts compounded means that the area was and was looked upon as full of excitement, hope enthusiasm, passion, determination, optimism, and profoundness and suddenly it was blown away.

I really enjoyed this blog post that talked about the spectators. It's conclusion was right on the money: "One of the many puzzling aspects of yesterday's attacks was the question of what, exactly, the perpetrators thought they'd accomplish by targeting what basically amounts to a celebration of human tenacity. If anything, the tragedy in Boston will further solidify the bond between runner and spectator. And when the Chicago marathon happens this October, I'll show up to run harder, and they'll show up to cheer louder. If anyone thought this attack would discourage the runners or the watchers, they've clearly never been to a marathon."

To best encapsulate my reflections on this event, the articles, news and posts that I have seen, this nails it: "If you're trying to defeat the human spirit, marathoners are the wrong group to target."

Monday, September 3, 2012

Pier to Peak: ✔

Spent 75 real training miles in August, 52 base building miles in July and 27 'getting into some sort of routine' miles in June. A total of 154 miles later I was 'ready' for Pier to Peak in Santa Barbara. In June and up through mid-July, I was still doubting I'd sign up or that I'd be able to train. By mid-July, I said, what the heck and just signed up. 

The race was good, ended up doing quite a bit of walking up there. Kudos to Jake Clinton, race organizer. Some miles were grueling...I'm thinking numbers #9 and #10. In mile 12 I posted my 5th fastest mile of this race...go figure! 

Finished the 2 water bottles I carried w/half gatorade, half water, and got one refilled with water once for a total of a lot of water! (3 Liters)

The race itself was very well organized. I'd like to complain that I never understood the course map...but the truth is, I think I never wanted to understand how exactly it would all work out, I knew the basics; Sterns Wharf to La Cumbre Peak. 4000 feet elevation gain and 13.1 miles was enough knowledge, no need to know the hill grades or elevation gains per mile. To be honest, I didn't look at the temperature either. I was concerned when there was no marine layer to be found at the start, so I never checked the weather. There was plenty of food and drink at the end and I met some great folks along the way. I wouldn't recommend this as a first ever race, but I think it's challenging enough for the spirit. Some races are made for the legs, this one is far more for the heart; not the beating one, but the motivational one. 

After having finished this race I'm left with one lesson: maybe you don't train perfectly for everything, some things you just have to do 'em and get them done. As a perfectionist control freak, this is a tough lesson, but almost liberating. What other mountain do I have to conquer without a memorized course map? 

The more dangerous and almost impossible byproduct of this race is this question: If I can finish this race, what other race can I do that I've been afraid of? 

(DailyMile Training Log:

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Just doing it - why not? Pier to Peak

Four years ago I learned of the Pier to Peak half marathon that takes place on Labor Day weekend in Santa Barbara, that gains 3996 feet in elevation, starting at the dolphins by the beach and ending at La Cumbre Peak. Because of my political involvment,one of the highlights of Labor Day is that it marks the unofficial beginning to campaign season. While this tough race seemed appealing it looked as if though it required a lot of heavy training, so I put it on the list of races to run in future years.

Two summers later, I began training for the race for a couple of weeks. One day I asked a friend to drive the course with me just to check it out. The road was never ending and we don't in fact know if we ever reached the top or not. I psyched out and scratched it off the list of races to run.

The next summer I vacillated a serious consideration of the race. It was a campaign season, and interesting one since I didn't work on a campaign in the same capacity as previous years, but training would've been hard. I figured I'd make a decision within the first week of August. The decision was simple and it was a definitive NO - since I fractured my shoulder on August 1st. That would leave training and all running out of the question.

This year I posted on Facebook that I was thinking about doing it...Ms. Kristiana said something to the effect of - just do it. I considered it a little longer and on July 29th I finally signed up. While I had spent most of July building a base mileage I started 'training' at the beginning of August. I'll be able to get up to an 11 mile run in by the week before the race, but I don't know where I can work on hills... 

Jude, a friend told me that her and her then- boyfriend ran it and were almost crawling toward the end. But recommended it as worthwhile. A couple of friends mentioned on Facebook that they're doing it for a second, and some even a third time. While it sounds like a grueling race, it must also be rewarding one to finish.

This is the course map:

And here's a video of the race last year.

If it goes well - meaning that I finish, I think I'll be in good timing to train for the SB full in November. The first 2 loops (10 miles) of the full is the same loop that I ran daily for YEARS! The second half of that race is the 'SB half marathon' which I've already run before, so I'd have home court advantage to finally PR.

P2P will be my 7th half marathon, and one that will be plenty challenging, I am anticipating. I'm still really excited about it - it's my nerdy way of celebrating my 28th year. This upcoming year will be one of just doing things! Not in a wreckless manner, but with just enough caution to not be deemed wreckless, but not as measured as my M.O. We'll see how this approach goes.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Runners don't always like to go run...

Let me clear up a misconception. For as excited and disciplined of a crowd as we are - Recreational Runners - we don't always like to go run.

Case in point. My 5:30AM alarm went off, my skylight was pitch dark. My 6:00AM alarm went off and I managed to turn it off. At 7:30AM my sister Facetimed my iPad, and I pretended not to hear it, so she Facetimed my iPhone.

Okay, I was up and contemplated staying in the flannel sheets a little longer on this average winter day. But finally after much consideration, I got my butt in running pants, grabbed a sweatshirt from the clean laundry got my shoes on, and was grudgingly out the door.

Because it was late, I could only do a short run, which means it had to be faster than a longer leisurely run...

It is true that runners love running but the act of having to go on a run: getting out of bed, getting dressed and out the door is a whole different story from time to time. Or am I wrong?