Friday, August 17, 2007

splash and dash #3

Last night I participated in Splash and Dash 2007 #3 (it's a series of three races; I missed the first two). It's (supposed to be) a 1500m swim in Stevens Creek Reservoir, followed by a 5k trail run around Stevens Canyon Park. It was started by a bunch of local pro triathletes who donate all the proceeds to various charities, and it's a cool concept to have a "tune-up" race on a Thursday night to test your fitness throughout the season.


I emerged from the whole to-do feeling like I'd had a great workout, and above all else, feeling like....I. Suck. Ass.

There are many reasons for this. Some of them were my fault, some of them were not.

My fault:
1) I have been slacking since SJIT. I had not been in the pool for the past month (I swam TODAY!). I've been running maybe twice a week, no more than 45 minutes slow, maybe 30 minutes tempo at a time. No track work.
2) I did not wear a wetsuit (they actually make you swim faster). But then, the water was 78 degress; I might have cooked. Anyway, the drag from my tri-top was definitely noticeable on the second loop.

Not my fault:
1) The swim course was mismarked. Normally I can swim 1500m in 30-35 minutes. This swim took me 43:25. As I exited the water, a race volunteer read me my time and said sorry, the buoys had been blown around by the wind...or something. No biggie--it's pretty much entirely volunteers out there, out of the goodness of their hearts. Besides, I needed the workout.
2) Most people interested in a quickie aquathon on a Thursday night are, um, kind of hardcore. So I was dusted. I"m used to the Everyman crowd...who I usually outswim without even trying. But these peeps? FAST. Every time I tried to draft off somebody, they were just a little bit faster than me. Every time I sighted, I could see the pack ahead of me, just a little further away. Kinda demoralizing for a girl who thinks she's a fast swimmer.

The good things:
1) I had a chance see some old teammates. Mary was there, and Sachin, and of course Trista from the fall team. Also, Christine's friend Sarah--poor girl is terrified of open water!
2) I got a kick-ass workout, for how much I've been slacking. The swim was tiring, and I got to see what an open water swim sans wetsuit feels like. The run was beautiful, and not too tough. I could have gone out harder, but I was enjoyng the twilight and not sure where and when the hills would strike.
3) Knee feels awesome!

Now...time for me schedule some speed work during the week, and some long runs on the weekends. I have officially signed up for the San Jose Rock and Roll Half Marathon, on October 14th!

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

first track practice!


Last night was our first track practice as a team for the fall tri season. It went pretty well; just a light run and some stretching and dynamic flexibility drills. We're hurting for participants, which is a bit disappointing for me. Our goal had been to recruit 50 people and so far we've only got 22. :-( I'm trying to stay optimistic; we've got three more weeks to accept new participants, after all! The staff is a really great crew; a few familiar faces from spring season, including one of my ride buddies, Trista, as a training captain. Awesome.


I've just come off a two-week hiatus from training. I was on vacation in China! I went for one short run, but it was so hot, humid, and smoggy that I was pretty well toasted after about 20 minutes. Other than that, I did LOTS of walking, including quite a few steps hoofing it up and down the Great Wall at Mutianyu. Turns out that a total break was a good thing. The knee is doing a lot better, and I was able to get some good bodywork, including a Shen (Xen?) session and a couple Taiwan style sessions.

Since my return on Monday, I have been trying to get back on the California clock. Last night at practice I ran a pretty easy mile. Today I went for a nice, easy ride--about 24 miles to Calero and back. I went up Bailey--my first sustained climb since Escape from Alcatraz on June 3rd--and the knee felt pretty good! Didn't pinch at all until I only had about 5 miles left...not bad. As I was coming down McKean, Linda Gallo passed me and said hello! Always fun to sight a local pro. :-) If only I could swim like her! Now I'm at home, kicking back with the knee on ice. I'm feeling pretty good. The break did me good, and I don't think I've lost too much fitness.