Monday, February 26, 2007

An era on hiatus

So Christine, my ever-faithful tri-buddy, officially announced her intent to sit out spring season on the TNT website today. Poor C...she has been having major GI issues for about 2+ months, and just last week was finally diagnosed, definitively, with Crohn's disease. No doubt she'll be back into the mix before long--there's no keeping that girl down. In the meantime, I'm bummed she won't be around the next couple months. More than anything, I feel bad that she has to sit out so many things that are important to her. Gotta do what you gotta do for your health, though!

Otherwise, training is going pretty well. It's kicking up quick, though--Wildflower is such a tough course that the training is already pretty challenging early in the season.

This past weekend we started hill training on the bike. Eesh...I felt a bit humbled by my performance. I'll have to work in some hill repeats on my own on Valparaiso, and maybe a ride or two up Bernal. My speed on the flats is pretty encouraging, though--I had no problem keeping it up to 19-20mph on Foothill...when I didn't have to stop. Darn those red lights!

Swimming is no problem and never has been. Long Course (the race I'm doing) Pro (more experienced level) workouts are up to about 2400-2500m three days per week.

Running is also going pretty well. I'm glad I spent a little time in the off-season building my fatigue resistance with nice, long, slow runs. Now at the track I'm smokin' it. I think Coach Harold my make me move up to the Pro group soon. Last week we did 3 mile repeats in a row and each one was faster than the one before it! :-) The only problem with tears up my calves, big-time. I need to stretch more, but a little body work from Kristi tomorrow won't hurt either!

Overall...I'm a little nervous at this point...mostly about the bike. The Wildflower course is notorious. It's hilly and exposed...and the worst hill on the ride comes at mile 41! It's called Nasty Grade, and I will get my first introduction to it at Wildflower practice weekend in a bit less than 3 weeks. In the meantime, I'm trying to think good thoughts--and making definite plans to get in a ride up Page Mill to test my mettle...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

can't get enough of that spinning...


Every time I hop on that bike for a spin workout, I never have enough time to get the whole shebang done. Tuesday is spinning day, and my Tuesday is scheduled tight enough to make workouts pretty hard to fit in.

Still, I make it work--yesterday I managed to get all the intervals (4x6' @ L2) done, even if I didn't get all the easy spinning done. 50 minutes overall when it should have been 65.

Monday was great--I squeezed in a 40 minute leg strength-endurance session before my swim.
SL squat w/ 5# DB rotation 15/2x3
Side lunge w/ 15# DB 15/2x3
45# Bar squat 20x3
SL bridge 10/2x3

Swim was:
400 warmup
10x50 drill (15")
10x50 L2
200 cool down

Now, off to do today's swim!

Oh yeah, happy Valentine's day. :-)

Monday, February 12, 2007

Escape from Alcatraz!

I found out I won a slot in Escape from Alcatraz!

So on June 3rd, I will be competing in the most poular triathlon in the world. It'll actually be televised! Exciting. Plus, my mom and dad will be here for it. I can't wait!

training weekend


I got up at 6am and it was POURING in the south bay. I debated whether I should even take my bike with me to practice! I went ahead and put it IN my car, instead of on it. That way it wouldn't be out in the rain.

Headed out to MVHS for team practice. Luckily it wasn't really raining up in Los Altos, just sort of misting heavily. The coaches debated for awhile and then opted to send us out for an easy ride on Foothill instead of our planned marker set. I chose to go with the elite group and sped along pretty fast, catching up to some of the pros. We went out to Alpine and then headed back--maybe 20 miles in all?

Even though it wasn't raining and Foothill is pretty clear of debris, my bike got GRIMY. By the end of the ride, the most awful noises were coming from my rims whenever I braked. I shuddered at the thought of all the junk that must've been getting caught up in my drivetrain.

Anyway, once back at MVHS, I downed some sport beans (yum!) and transitioned into my swim gear. The pool hadn't completely heated up yet, so...brrrrr!!!! Jumped into a pro lane and warmed up for 300. Then we did 8 x 50 drills. After that, 1 more 100 to get blood flowing and then our swim marker set. Last season our swim marker set was always a timed 500, but this year, Alfredo had us do 20 minutes of constant swimming, counting how many laps we could do in the alloted time. I ended up with 44 on the nose--exactly 1100. I was pretty happy with that. As long as my sighting is good, that puts me on track for a much faster swim pace this year.

**Note to self--my leg warmers DO NOT work with tri-shorts on the bike...only with real bike shorts. Either that, or my tri-shorts are just to big and stretched out to do any good helping hold them up any more! My leg warmers kept falling down on the bike, and it was so annoying I eventually had to just stuff them in a jersey pocket.


Opted to skip the buddy run and sleep late. I went out for my own run later on the Los Alamitos Creek Trail, which has usurped the Los Gatos Creek Trail as my favorite site for endurance runs. Mostly flat and not at all crowded. That makes it quiet enough for the occasional sighting of some nifty birds: egrets, herons, mergansers, and of course, mallards and coots. Anyway, kept it up for an hour at L1, so pretty comfy. Endurance steadily building. :-)

Once home, I set about the task of cleaning up my bike. While cleaning the rims and hubs, I discovered that my rear tire had no air at all...and upon further inspection, found a rock lodged through the tire and into the tube. DOH! Headed to the bike shop for a couple new tires (might as well replace them both).

Thursday, February 08, 2007

First 2-mile marker set

Just got home from track practice. It was good to see everyone after having missed Saturday practice for a weekend of volunteering for the Girl Scouts. My non-profits are starting to conflict with one another!

Christine managed to make it by, which was awesome. I've missed her a lot. We got into this whole Team in Training/triathlon thing together, after all. Hopefully she'll be able to get things straightened out and hang with the team for Wildflower. I'm crossing my fingers for her tummy problems to get resolved quickly and smoothly.

Anyway, at track tonight we did our first marker set of the season: a timed 2 mile run. I was pretty happy with my performance. I finished in 17 minutes flat, with splits of 8:20 and 8:40. For comparison, my first marker set last spring was 19:35. So, overall, some pretty significant gains. Hopefully the next one will be under 17 minutes.

Earlier today, I managed to squeeze in an upper body workout. My old power 3 pull-up set. Here's how it goes:

3 max pull-ups
12 DB chest press 60%
rest 1 min.
repeat 3x

3 max pull-ups
12 reverse flies 60%
rest 1 min.
repeat 3x

3 max pull-ups
12 incline press 60%
rest 1 min.
repeat 3x

...and then finish with one last set of 3 pull-ups for a total of 30 max pull-ups.

Oh, yeah, and Wednesday I did the long course pro swim workout--totalled 1700m. Was fairly easy, but had good intervals.

Tuesday, I spun for 45 min with 2x6 and L2 thrown in. Would have done an hour, but had a client, so I did the best I could.

Monday, February 05, 2007

It's time to train for Wildflower!

Long time without blogging... So i'll just jump right in. The first ten or so weeks of my off-season training plan went off without a hitch. Then a 3 week bout of bronchitis, followed closely by the death of a dear family member, pretty much foiled the last 2 weeks of my power phase. I was barely able to hang on to a decent fitness level with about 2 workouts a week, if that, during my sickest days and the days with my gran in the hospital.

Now spring TNT season has officially started. I'm feeling good and ready to roll. I've signed up for long course at Wildflower this year. I know, crazy, right? That would be a 1/2 Ironman, and just about one of the toughest courses out there! For those of you unclear on the distances, a 1/2 Ironman consists of a 1.2 mile swim, a 56 mile bike ride, and a 13.1 mile run.

Today I went for my first swim in about 8 weeks. Phew... swim efficiency goes downhill in a HURRY when you take a little time away! But I managed to make it through the long course pro workout pretty comfortably.

warmup 500m
drill 8x50m (15")
8x50m @ L2 (10")
cool down 200m

Triceps felt a little tight, and gliding got a little harder as a got winded and felt my buoyancy dropping as I had a harder time relaxing and keeping my lungs fulls of air. Shouldn't be a problem to bring it right back together again, though. This weekend at practice we've got a 500m marker set. I'm anxious to see how I do with it--hopefully not too slow!

Might try to fit in a quick strength session in later today--low intensity, high reps. Just enough to wake up a few more muscle fibers that have only been firing sporadically for about a month!