Sunday, September 25, 2011

I miss running

This surprised me.  Running has always been hard for me and quite frankly I don't love it like I do cycling.  And swimming, well, I still am excited by the fact that I can swim.  So I thought a running break would be no biggie.  In the past 6 weeks I have run a whopping 7 miles.  I have a periformis issue which is really a pain in the butt.  No really, no joke, the periformis is a muscle in your bum, so it is really a pain in the butt and currently my butt.

I finally went to the UK Runners Clinic a couple of weeks ago & was diagnosed with Periformis syndrome.  I was directed to take 2-3 weeks off from running but could continue to cross train.  After my break I was to do a walk test.  If I still had pain I was told the next step would be physical therapy.  Yesterday I did a 4 mile hike at Raven Run with Nina.  Unfortunately I could still feel the pain. The pain isn't terrible by any means but when I run the muscle spasms & my right leg gets pretty weak and I end up limping a little.  It feels similar to sciatica.  Sciatica pain starts in the low back & radiates down the leg.

So this week I make the call to the physical therapist.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Week 3 of Trying to be a Morning Person

For the past 3 weeks I have been getting up at 5:15AM which gets me into the pool by 5:50AM. Prior to 3 weeks ago I always thought swimming at 5:30AM may not be a wise thing for me to do.  Roll out of bed, drive to the gym , jump in the pool & swim.  Not being a morning person or a great swimmer it just seemed.....a little unsafe.

Anyhoo, I made it through the first 2 weeks of without any incident.  This morning was a different story.  I am not sure if it was because of the dreary weather or just because folks are back into their routines but the pool was busy this morning.  Every lane was already taken so I had to share a lane.  As I was finishing up my warmup I managed to get a mouth & goggle full of water from my lane mate.  Usually I can swim through that kind of thing but not this morning...I started choking like crazy.  Nice, not only do I look like a bad swimmer I seem to be drowning as well.  I made it to the wall without having to be rescued & took a breather.  I drained my goggles & noticed I couldn't see.  Great, I thought I lost one of my contacts.  Nope...just managed to slide up in my eyeball.  Love when that happens. 

After a minute or two I started my drill set.  A similar thing happens a few more time but I manage to recover without choking or stopping & my goggles stayed dry.  I am used to swimming with other folks but today the pool just seemed so chaotic.   I wonder if it was just one of those days you can't find your rhythm or what. After about 30 minutes my lane mate was gone & I had the lane to myself. 

I finished my workout without any more incidents & then went to the 7AM Pilates class.  WOW - that class kicks my butt...or should I say my gut?   You think after spending a year swimming, biking & running that you are in good shape.   Maybe good shape for those 3 activities but I have found that I have some serious muscle imbalances that I need to work on.  

Pro's for before work Workouts:

Pool has 4 lap lanes.  After work only 2.
It is done.  After work I can just go home. 
It makes me feel energized until about 2PM.  Then I want to take a nap.
The people in the 6AM & 7AM classes are WAY more chipper & happy than 5:30PM classes.

Con's for before work Workouts:

9PM bedtime
5:15AM alarm
2PM drowsies.  Hopefully, I will get used to that after I adjust to my new schedule.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Swim Baseline

My muscles were so sore today from yesterdays extremely tough Powerhouse class.  I thought an easy swim would help soothe them.  I didn't feel like doing a structured swim workout so I decided to just swim for an hour.  I was curious to know how far I could go.  The last time I did a straight hour swim in a 25 yard pool was in January 2010 which was part of the USMS Postal hour swim.  That time I swam 2100 yards. Don't get me wrong, I have done plenty of hour swims since then but with the exception of open water swims, they are all part of a workout including drills, kicks, pull buoy,etc and not straight swimming.

Thanks to my pool mate I didn't have to count all those dreadful laps and honestly, even after 100 yards I can loose track of how many laps I really have done. 

My plan was to do 3 sets of 20 minutes to see how consistently I could swim each set.  I did a quick stop at the end of 100 yards to re-seat my goggles & to make sure my watch was counting. 

20:30 min = 30 laps or 750 yards - stopped for 15 seconds to readjust my swim cap & for some water
41:10 min = 60 laps or 1500 - stopped for 15 seconds for some water
61:00 min = 88 laps or 2200

I was pleased to see I was pretty much spot on for the first 2 sets.  I had the most trouble in the last set.  During this time I had 2 different lane mates so that was a bit distracting.  The first one was a 25 yard sprinter & a long break taker.  At one point he was doing this weird squat like walk which threw me off for some reason.  After about 10 minutes he was out of my lane.  Not sure if he got out or moved to another free lane.  With about 5 minutes left I had another lane mate who was super speedy.  Before I was done she was also out of my lane.  Not sure if I was difficult to swim with or it was just a coincidence that another lane quickly freed up.

Overall, it was a good baseline swim.  I swam about 50 yards further than the 2010 postal swim.  Improvement no matter how small is still improvement.  I tried to focus on long & strong to keep my swim technique in check.   I wasn't too tired at the end of the set & had no shoulder pain...this is probably because of my right hip/groin/butt issue.  Only one part of my body seems to hurt at one time.  I am sure as soon as that heals up my shoulders will be problematic again. 

One more week of doctor directed no running/cycling.  After 2 weeks of no running/cycling I am supposed to test it out with a speed walk.  If I feel any pain then it is 1 more week of no running/cycling.  If I still have pain after 3 weeks then I am supposed to start PT. 

Don't forgot to enter my Snake Oil giveaway HERE.  I love the stuff & used some today after my swim to help my sore muscles. 

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Snake Oil Giveaway!!!

Back in June I came across some Snake Oil that I decided to try out on my neck & shoulders during my 8 week Olympic distance triathlon training.  I used it for a solid 10 weeks before posting my review.

I shared this review with Pain's All Gone and they graciously shipped me two 4 oz bottles of product as a thank you.

So, here is your chance to win one of these bottles to try out for yourself!  FYI - the second bottle I am saving for a TNT fundraiser early next year.

 Here is how you enter:

  1. Follow my blog (mandatory).  If you already follow leave a comment saying so!
  2. Mention this giveaway on your Blog, facebook or twitter.  Leave a separate comment for each.
  3. Like Bluegrass Tri Chick on Facebook. If you already follow leave a comment saying so!
  4. Follow Bluegrass Tri Chick on Twitter.  If you already follow leave a comment saying so!
Contest ends at midnight October 1st.  The winner will be selected on October 2nd by the random number generator.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

2011 Triathlon Season Recap

This year my triathlon specific training started on April 5th.  I finished the season with Tri for Sight as part of the Tres Chic relay team on September 4th. 

I competed in 5 triathlons but only trained specifically for 2 races, Irongirl Atlanta & Lake Logan International.  I followed the Advanced Sprint plan for the Irongirl & the Beginner Olympic plan for Lake Logan.  Both were from Time Crunched Triathlete.  These plans fit in really well with my schedule.

This years Triathlons:

Irongirl Atlanta - May 15
French Broad Challenge - Won first award ever! - May 28
Markey Sprint - June 26
Lake Logan International - August 6
Tri for Sight - Tres Chic Relay (bike leg) - September 4 - Won 3rd place Female Team

Total Miles - 4/5/11 - 9/4/11

Swim = 29.5 miles
Bike = 754 miles
Run = 175 miles

For a whopping total of 958.5 Miles!  For me that is my biggest total since starting triathlons.  So basically, if I left my house in Lexington, KY & hopped onto I75 South, 958.5 miles later  (well, to be exact 953) I would be at my Aunt Maggi's house in North Ft Myers, FL.  Pretty cool to think about it that way. 

Iron Girl Specific Miles - Training Block 4/5/11 - 5/15/11

Swim (1/3 Mile OWS) = 7.83 Miles
Bike (18 Miles)  = 216.59 Miles
Run (3.1 Miles) = 49.09 Miles

Lake Logan Specific Miles - Training Block 6/14/11 - 8/6/11

Swim (1500m OWS) = 13.82 Miles
Bike (40km) = 355.14 Miles
Run (10k) = 65.34 Miles

After Lake Logan on 8/6 I did not ride on the road until Tri for Sight.  I also did not run the last 2 weeks of August due to an inner groin strain & a sinus infection.  I did get in quite a few swims in August but overall  my August miles were pretty dismal.

In the hopes that my minor ailments do not turn into full blown injuries, I am not riding or running for the next couple of weeks.  I am doing lots of stretches, Pilates, Yoga & Swimming in hopes to be able to ease back into running by October 1st.  I am registered for the Iron Horse half marathon on October 23rd but at this point I doubt that I will be able to run it.  I will finish up the Team Aquaphor season with some local 5K's once I get running again. 

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

TNT "Warrior Wes"

This is what Coach Susan called the final TNT triathlete to finish this years Tri for Sight and after what I witnessed Sunday I completely agree.

Wes' Dad at TNT inspiration dinner
Photo courtesy of David Robertson
Wes was participating in this season's Team in Training Tri for Sight to honor his father who currently in undergoing cancer treatments. No one or thing was going to stop him from finishing this triathlon and let me tell you he was up against a lot of odds.  I am only going to replay what I witnessed Sunday....pure inspiration and well, if I am honest, a little nastiness. 

Wes started off the swim around 8AM and finished in 31m17s.  He made his way to transition & after about 9 minutes he was off on the bike.   I know this because these are the only times officially posted in the results.  One of the TNT mentors mentioned to me around 10:15 to keep an eye out for the police bringing in the last cyclist because she suspected it would be him.  Well, we saw the cops come in but they weren't bringing in Wes.  So we figured we must have missed him & that he was already out on the run.

Sometime around 10:30 I found out Wes was still out on the bike course & now officially disqualified because he didn't finish the bike leg within the allotted time.  At this point all I knew is that he was having serious cramping issues & had to stop every few minutes but would not accept a ride back to transition.  He was determined to get there on his own.  The bike course official removed his timing chip, gave him a bunch of Gatorade and made sure he knew that he now had to follow the rules of the road.  My husband volunteered to go out and find Wes.  Steve and a fellow TNT'er went out to try to talk him into coming back with them.  Again he refused & continued on his incredibly painful & slow journey.  
Steve in the black truck, Wes ever so slowly making it in to transition
Shortly before noon we finally saw Steve driving up Sports Center Drive with a cyclist in tow.  We soon found out what was going on with him.  At around mile 1 of the bike Wes had to stop to throw up.  This continued for the next 18 miles of the bike.  He couldn't keep anything in his stomach.  The dude had the stomach flu or maybe after reading his fundraising blog it was a beaver fever relapse!?!!  He was miserable but oh so determined to finish this race.  Coach Susan was so worried about him.  She asked the paramedics to talk to him & try to convince him to stop.  Nope, not gonna happen.  He was going to walk the 4 miles.

Well, we couldn't let him go do the walk on his own.  So Shannon (Lex TNT coordinator), Nina & I walked with him.  He was sweating buckets, his color was bad but yet he never talked about quitting.  We did our best to keep him going & surprisingly he made it all the way to the Arboretum before having to take his first pit stop.  Every time he drank anything it would just come back up.  Not good.

When we reached the Arbo parking lot Ruth & Audrey joined us.  So now there were 5 of us girls trying to keep Wes going for another 2.5 miles.  Finally we reached the turn around & started our way back to the finish.  Bridget from the Louisville office brought us some water & Gatorade around mile 2.5.  As we were about to leave the Arbo Ruth & Audrey head back to their car.  They followed us along for part of the last mile & eventually went back to the finish to wait.

At about one tenth of a mile to go, we hear words of encouragement for Wes over a loud speaker.  We soon saw this encouragement came from the last Lexington police vehicle left at the finish line.  We make the last turn for what we all know to be the finish.  The official finishers shoot has been taken down but they had some orange ribbon pulled across the way so Wes can cross.  The sight of the orange ribbon brought tears to my eyes.  So many of the TNT'ers were still there waiting for him to cross that finish line. 

Photo courtesy of David Robertson
Photo courtesy of David Robertson
Photo courtesy of David Robertson

He doesn't have an official time but he did earn and I mean earn his TNT finishers medal Sunday.   
Photo courtesy of David Robertson
Lots of people were thinking man, Wes is crazy, why is he putting himself through this?  After some reflection, I completely get it.  As most of you know, I lost my Dad to cancer in 2006.  I didn't find TNT until 2009.  If my Dad was still alive in 2009 & going through his cancer treatments there is no way in hell I would have dropped out of that race.  It is an incredibly emotion experience to do a TNT in honor or memory of someone you love.  Sometimes, you can't put into words what you feel & the only way you can express yourself is in action.  Before Sunday I didn't know Wes but today I have great admiration for him.
Photo courtesy of David Robertson
Coincidentally, @RunningQuotes tweeted this on Sunday "Sometimes the biggest accomplishment is not who finishes first, but who last!"

Way to go Wes!

Want to join the awesome TNT family?  They are currently recruiting nationwide for the winter season. Check out the TNT website HERE.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Tri a Relay!

My first triathlon finish ('09)
The Tri for Sight in 2009 was my very first triathlon.  I became a triathlete thanks to the awesome coaches & support from Team in Training.  Although the first one was hard I knew the moment that I crossed the finish line I was hooked. 

In 2010 I did several sprints including my first open water triathlon.  This year I stepped it up the distance and I completed my first International Triathlon on August 6th.  Since this was my main focus I wanted Tri for Sight to be a fun race not to mention I was a little tired of the pool swim.  I still can't believe in just over 2 years I went from not being able to swim 3 strokes to preferring open water swims!  If I can do it, anyone can!

Nina's first triathlon finish ('10)
So enter the Relay.  After the Markey Tri I mentioned to my friend Nina that I was considering doing the Du this year.  She promptly suggested that we do the relay which I thought was a fabulous idea!  Nina was a competitive swimmer back in the day & completed her first triathlon, the TFS with TNT, in 2010.  I was all set to do the bike leg now we just needed to find a runner.   I immediately thought of Tonya.  She joined TNT in 2010 and completed the Rock n Roll Arizona marathon with Nina who did the half.  Tonya has mentioned several times to me that she wanted to give triathlon a shot but like me she isn't a swimmer.  I thought that this would be the perfect way to introduce her to triathlon without the pressure of actually doing the triathlon.   She immediately agreed to be our runner.  So now we were all set, everyone was going to do their favorite/strongest leg of the 2011 Tri for Sight.

Nina came up with the fabulous team name, Tres Chic.  Get it?  Kinda like Tri Chick!  That is exactly how she said it to me too since I am pretty dense sometimes.
Tres Chic at Packet Pick up
Tres Chic carbo loading, aka Pizza & Beer!
Tres Chic in transition
Since we didn't have much to setup in transition, we decided to meet at the Team in Training tent at 6AM.  We quickly got things setup.   The relay teams were racked right by the Bike In/Bike Out which was great.   We listened to the pre-race talk & then made our way to the pool.  We were number 142 which meant Nina would be the 142nd person into the pool and meant I would be out on the bike really early.  The first year I did this race I was 4th to last in the pool.  Last year was better but I was still pretty far back. 
A happy Nina out of the pool
I watched Nina start her swim & then made the 1/4 mile jog up to transition to get ready for the bike.  Nina completed the 800m swim in 16:57. Pretty darn good considering she hadn't swam in about a month partly due to her 2 week European vacation! We quickly swapped out the timing chip & I was off on the bike. 

I hadn't been on the bike since Lake Logan which was 4 weeks ago due to an groin issue.  I was also a little nervous about how it would ride since I had the cables replaced about 2 weeks ago but hadn't ridden it since getting it back.  I did put it on the trainer briefly Saturday morning to make sure it was shifting OK which it seemed to be doing.  Unfortunately, I didn't think to check out my computer on Saturday.  It was dead for the race so no cadence info for me.  I did remember to start my Garmin so I could at least see my average speed. 

I can't tell you how nice it was to start the bike leg early.  Usually, by the time I get on the bike the entire transition area is empty.  I was able to see all the leaders go by on the bike which was pretty cool.   Since I was out pretty early on the bike there were only a few people I could pass & I was passed by a few people.  There were 2 guys that I exited out of transition with & we passed each other several times on the course.  I could climb better than them but they would pass me back on the flats/down hills.  I think we passed each other at least 5 times.  They came up to me after the race & I found out they were a father/son team which I thought was really cool.
Me coming back in

I started my garmin after I mounted the bike so it is a little short of the actual time.  My official time was 1h4m12s for 18.9 miles although my Garmin said 19.0.  I did it 1.2 mph faster than last year. 

Tonya putting on the chip

I racked my bike & handed off the timing chip to Tonya who was ready to run. 

I wish I could be that happy when I run

In less than a minute Tonya was out on the run course.  We hung out in transition for awhile watching people come & go.  After awhile I decided to go wait for Tonya along the run course. 

Tonya's first Triathlon relay finish '11

After I saw her I headed back to the finish line.  Tonya ran the 4 miles in  41m53s. 

Tres Chic at the finish!
We hung out to watch the remaining athletes cross the finish line as well as hang out with our fellow Team in Training crew.  Somewhere around 10:30 they posted the results.  Our total time was 2h08m39s which was good enough for 3rd place Female Team!!  We were edged out of 2nd place by a fellow TNT female team by a mere 29 seconds but we were still stoked about placing 3rd!
Tres Chic with our 3rd place awards!
Triathlon relays are great way to introduce non-triathlete friends into the world of triathlon so consider signing up your friends to do a relay today! 


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...