Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year! Plus HBBC Week 6

Happy New Year from Captiva Island, FL!! 

I have posts in the works for a 2012 recap & my goals for 2013 but those can wait while we continue enjoying our vacation.   Although, since it starts tomorrow, I will say my January goal is THIS.

It looks like this:
Week 6 HBBC Recap:

Monday:  Run 2 miles (Day 33 #RWRunStreak), Walk 0.4 miles - 2.4 points
Tuesday: Bike 24 miles, Run 1.1 mile (Day 34 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 10.1 points
Wednesday: Run 3 miles (Day 35 #RWRunStreak), Walk 1 mile, Freggies - 5 points
Thursday: Bike 40 miles, Run 1.1 miles (Day 36 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 15.1 points
Friday: Run 1.1 miles (Day 37 #RWRunStreak), 1 hour Stand Up Paddleboard, Bike 4 miles, , Freggies - 6.44 points
Saturday: Run 1.38 mile (Day 38 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 2.38 points
Sunday: Run 3 mile (Day 39 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 4 points

Bonus Points: 7 - Daily FB check-in

Week 6 Total:  52.42
HBBC Total:  232.86

Friday, December 28, 2012

N2U CT Challenge - Stand Up Paddleboard Plus N2U Recap

Today was the 4th N2U CT Challenge of the month.  It drove me nuts that I skipped September through October so I decided I would do 4 in the month of December to make 12 N2U CT Challenges for 2012.  Whew!  The 4th challenge was Stand Up Paddleboard or SUP.   This is something I have wanted to try for over a year but never have had the chance.

According to the Sail Honeymoon brochure, SUP is the 'next wave in paddling fun!'   The brochure also says 'Just a few minutes to get the feel.  Enjoy the view or 'pump it up' for a great core workout!'  Sounded like a good N2U CT Challenge to me!

We found the place yesterday along the route on our bike ride to Honeymoon Island.  It is along the protected waters between Dunedin & Honeymoon Island.   The weather in Florida has been chilly since we have arrived (OK chilly is relative - it has been in the low to upper 60's this week).  I contemplated putting on my wetsuit for warmth just in case I fell off the board.  The water temperature was only 61 degrees. I read somewhere that 9 / 10 SUP'ers stay upright but that meant 10% get wet.  In the end, I skipped the wetsuit & wore my board shorts, rashie & my PFD.

The rental was $25 for an hour.  Perfect.  Steve put his kayak in to paddle around with me.  After an oh so brief explanation on how to get on the board & how to paddle along with a quick mention if you fall off there with be laughter from the rental shack I was off.

The dude put the SUP on the beach next to the water but I was responsible for picking it up & getting it into the water.  Once in the water, about knee deep, I knelt onto the board to get a feel of it.

Steve didn't get any of photos of my not so graceful way of standing up.  Think being on hands & knees, then something like a down dog position then slowly lifting hands with a lot of wobbling & whoa's going on!   I managed to get upright & stay dry.

After about 5 minutes I had the hang of it.  I figured out how to turn around - just like in a kayak.  I started with my feet side by side but then moved them to a staggered position.   Both positions felt about the same.  I was worried about moving my feet though - I never did figure out how to move them without feeling like I was rocking the board too much.

We paddled out to one of the buoys.  The boats came pretty close to the buoys so I get to paddle around in the waves.  Trying to paddle into the wave was much harder than paddling away from them. A few times I started to loose my balance but each time I recovered.  It really wouldn't have been a big deal if I fell off the board - mostly my pride would have been wounded.  There were a lot of folks hanging out on the shore watching.

We paddled up & down the shore for the hour.  I really felt my legs working.  My right foot had a bit of a cramp from trying to keep my balance.  My core was engaged the entire time but it never felt tired.  After I got the hang of paddling it was really relaxing.  I found the experience very enjoyable.  I am looking forward to Spring when our local paddle shop, Canoe Kentucky, starts offering SUP.

I would like to thank Kim at (Just) Trying is for Little Girls for hosting this challenge.  It was so good to get out of the comfort zone & try some new activities.  A lot of them will continue to stay in the rotation in 2013.  I can't believe they year is over!

Now for the N2U CT Challenge Year in Review:

January - Pilates Reformer & Pilates Ball
February - P90X
March - Barre Amped
April - Kickboxing
May - Zumba Tone
June - Jump & Pump
July - Laurel Lake Paddlepalooza
August - High 30 Xtreme
December - R.I.P.P.E.D, CycleYou, TRX, SUP

The ones that will stay in the rotation are Pilates, High 30 Xtreme, CycleYou, TRX & SUP.  I have never been much for home videos but if I were P90X would be in the rotation as well.

My challenge for 2013 is 13 in 2013.  13 running events in 2013.  Any distance race 5K to marathon counts as does the run portion of a triathlon.   You can sign up for free through 12/31/12 HERE.  There are well over 300 people participating with lots of great prizes.  My first race is the Hair of the Dog Virtual 5K on New Years Day - it benefits an animal shelter in Washington.

Next stop - North Ft. Myers.....

Sunday, December 23, 2012

N2U CT Challenge - TRX Plus HBBC Week 5

Last Tuesday I completed my 3rd N2U Challenge for the month.  I finally got around to using the free TRX session pass offered by Swim Bike Run of KY that we all received in our Markey Tri goodie bags.  I arrived at SBR-KY a little early so I could knock out Day 27 of the #RWRunStreak.  

The TRX classes are in the same area as the CycleYou classes.   I was surprised but excited to see Marcus was teaching the class.  He taught the High 30 Xtreme class I took in August.  He mentioned he just started teaching at SBR about 3 weeks ago.

The TRX straps hang from the ceiling & basically you use your body weight to get an amazing workout.  Marcus started with arms, shoulders & back.  We then did a bunch of leg work followed by abs.  We did 45 seconds per set, 3 sets of each exercise.  All the exercises were very challenging but the one that was near impossible for me was the pike - in the photo above the pike exercise is the one with the girls butt in the air.  Let me tell you, I looked nothing like that!  I really wonder if I will ever be able to do a pike.  That is just the hardest exercise!  

TRX is a great workout.  My arms & abs were sore for days!!  Another great workout to add to the rotation.

Week 5 HBBC Recap:

Monday:  Run 3.22 miles (Day 26 #RWRunStreak) - 3.22 points
Tuesday: Run 1.2 miles (Day 27 #RWRunStreak), TRX 60 minutes - 4.2 points
Wednesday: Swim 40 minutes, Run 1.1 mile (Day 28 #RWRunStreak) - 5.1 points
Thursday: Run 1 mile (Day 29 #RWRunStreak) - 1 points
Friday: Run 1 mile (Day 30 #RWRunStreak) - 1 points
Saturday: Run 3.4 miles (Day 31 #RWRunStreak) - 3.4 points
Sunday: Run 2 miles (Day 32 #RWRunStreak) - 2 points

Bonus Points: 7 - Daily FB check-in

Week 5 Total:  26.92

HBBC Total: 180.44

I complain about all the crap we take with us but it is pretty cool to be able to blog from the passenger seat on I-75S.  Using my phone (on right armrest) as a local hotspot & Steve's new solar power charger (on left of laptop) I am able to upload photos, post on the HBBC Facebook page & publish this post.  Pretty nifty, huh?    

I would like to take a moment to give a huge shout out to Amanda at Run to the Finish.  She is the host of the HBBC.  She has done a ton of work to make this challenge fun & motivating for us all.  Thank you Amanda!! 

Finally, I would like to wish you & yours a very Merry Christmas!  May Santa be good to y'all!

Saturday, December 22, 2012


My 42nd birthday started off with a very cold run to the Arboretum with Steve followed by a few hours of packing up the Pathfinder to head South for the holidays.  The one bad thing about being into lots of different activities is there is a TON of crap to pack.  We loaded up our kayaks, bikes, running gear & all of our gadgets.   

Around 10:30 this morning I received a text from a co-worker.  I initially figured it was a Happy B-day text but nope.  He saw my picture in the local paper & was teasing me.  Yesterday while walking downtown to get my license plates renewed I saw out of the corner of my eye a photographer.  It was c-c-c-c-old & windy yesterday so I was dressed as Nanook of the North.  The photographer stopped me & told me he was from the Herald Leader.  I busted out laughing.  I knew he was trying to capture the perfect photo depicting how frigid the weather was & when he showed me the picture he took I was confident he got what he was looking for.  I made a mental note to check the website but with all we had going on getting this morning I had completely forgotten - that is until I received Gary’s text.  Not only did I make the paper - I made the front page - on my Birthday!!  What are the odds of that?!

We finally hit the road around 1PM.  Our first stop was at the Jellico, TN welcome center.  To my heart’s delight what did I see?  Santa in a sleigh!!  Pictures were a must!

Around 7pm we finally made it to our first stop.  Birthday with my friend Kara & her family.  Kara & I go waaaay back.  We have known each other since high school.  Her husband Larry made his famous Chicago deep dish pizza.  Afterwards their girls played some Christmas songs for us.   We then had cake!  Kara made an awesome chocolate peanut butter cake.   My tummy was about to burst but it was so worth it!

All in all it was a fabulous birthday!  Next stop...St. Pete!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

N2U CT Challenge - CycleYOU Plus HBBC Week 4

CycleYOU is my 2nd N2U CT Challenge of the month.  CycleYOU is new to Lexington & opened this past week for introductory rides.  It is housed in the same space as Swim Bike Run of Kentucky.   Noelle is the master mind of this new class.  You can read more about her & how it started on the CycleYOU website.

Since I have taken Spin for years, used the SBR CompuTrainers several times & spend the summers road cycling I was very curious to see how CycleYOU would be different.

I got there a little early to sign in & get my bike setup.  The space is pretty cool - inspirational messages on the walls, super sweet spin bikes, even candles to set the mood.  Melissa, the instructor, was walking around introducing herself.  I realized I had taken her spin class a few times last winter over at the Y.  She mentioned several times to keep an open mind while taking the class.

The bikes were similar to a traditional spin bike but there were some big differences.  First off, it is the smoothest & quietest indoor bike I have every ridden!  At one point the instructor turned down the music & even though everyone was spinning the room was silent.  Another really cool thing about the bikes is the gear shifter.  No more turning a knob to adjust the tension & guessing what the tension level is.   These bikes have a shifter that you move either up or down and the display tells you which gear you are in.  The gear settings are 0 - 24.  In addition to the gear setting, the display tells you cadence, power, heart rate (I suspect via an ANT+ strap although I didn't confirm), time & distance.  Hands down the BEST stationary bike I have ever ridden.   The website mentions using the best equipment & they definitely delivered.

Red lever in center of pic is the shifter
The class started off with a easy spin warm up.  I can't remember the order of the class but we did a jump set.  These jumps were not like normal jumps in spin.  Instead of sitting back in the saddle you hover over the saddle & which you will feel in your legs for sure.  There was an interval speed set & a hill climb, both seated & standing.  We did an ab set which included front & side cruches while still spinning.

We also did a set of pushups & a set of arms moves with hand weights all while spinning.  The pushups were straight forward as were the arm moves.  I used 2 pound weights which doesn't sound like much but believe me after 8 minutes of holding these they feel like 20 pounds!  The arm moves included lots of pulses, tricep & bicep exercises & a few others that I am surely forgetting before beginning the cool down.

The music was great!  Most of the moves are to the beat of the music & the moves are supposed flow from one to another - very yoga like.   By the end of class I was soaked.  It was definitely a great workout.

Going into the class I wasn't sure what to expect.  I am already a member of the city Y's plus Sunday master's swim practice.  I didn't think I would want to pay for another membership especially since spin classes are offered at the Y.  The going rates are in line with the yoga studio's in town.  Not cheap but for the quality of the equipment it is fair.   The class & the bikes impressed me.  On my way out I picked up a 10 pass class card.  I think it will be my new go to spin class this winter.

Melissa, me & Noelle
Week 4 HBBC Recap:

Monday:  Run 3.22 miles (Day 19 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 4.22 points

Tuesday: Run 1 mile (Day 20 #RWRunStreak) - 1 points
Wednesday: Run 3.22 mile (Day 21 #RWRunStreak) - 3.22 points
Thursday: Run 1 mile (Day 22 #RWRunStreak), 35 minute Swim - 4.5 points
Friday: Run 1 mile (Day 23 #RWRunStreak) - 1 points
Saturday: Run 3.6 mile (Day 24 #RWRunStreak), 60 minutes Yoga - 6.6 points
Sunday:  Swim 60 minutes, Run 1 mile (Day 25 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 8 points

Bonus Points: 8 - Daily FB check-in & WoW

Week Total: 36.54
HBBC Total: 153.52

Sunday, December 9, 2012

N2U CT Challenge - R.I.P.P.E.D Plus HBBC Week 3

One of my December goals is to complete 4 New 2U CT challenges since I have been such a slug the past few months.   In reality, I have been a little absorbed in my new job & just couldn't muster the motivation to get my bum to try a new class.  

The first New 2U CT challenge this month is R.I.P.P.E.D.    It stands for Resistance, Intervals, Power, Plyometrics, Endurance, and Diet.  It is offered at High Street Y 3 days a week.  There were only 3 participants on this particular day so it was almost like a personal training session. 

Whit was the instructor who was subbing for the usual Thursday night instructor.  He normally teaches Tuesday night along with the Thursday Powerhouse.  The dude is one tough instructor.  He is big on telling you to make the commitment to yourself to do the moves correctly.  He repeatedly said anyone can get through a workout by half a$$ing (OK he didn't say half a$$ing - that's me paraphrasing) the moves but you have to really challenge yourself to see improvements in yourself.  

This class reminded me of a melding of a lot of the P90X videos I took earlier this year.   It also reminded me of High 30 Extreme that I took in August at Northside Y.   There were some hand weight exercises, some body weight exercises, a section for power moves, some kickboxing & some intense intervals to get your heart pumping & the sweat pouring.  

This particular class didn't talk about diet at all.  Not sure why - I didn't ask since at the time I didn't know what the D stood for.  Maybe they covered diet when they first offered the class in September.  Who knows.  

It was a good class.  I was certainly sore the next day - particularly in my upper back & arms.  It won't be a regular to my routine but I would definitely take it again.

Week 3 HBBC Recap:

Monday:  Run 1 mile (Day 12 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 2 points
Tuesday: Swim 45 minutes, Run 1 mile (Day 13 #RWRunStreak) - 5.5 points
Wednesday: Run 2 mile (Day 14 #RWRunStreak), Freggies - 3 points
Thursday: Run 1 mile (Day 15 #RWRunStreak), 60 minutes R.I.P.P.E.D - 5 points
Friday: Run 1 mile (Day 16 #RWRunStreak) - 1 point
Saturday: CycleYou 60 minutes, Run 1 mile (Day 17 #RWRunStreak) - 7 points
Sunday: Run 1 mile (Day 17 #RWRunStreak) - 1 point

Bonus Points: 6 - Daily FB check-in

Week Total: 30.5
HBBC Total: 119

I skipped Sunday Masters swim practice this week.  Starting Saturday afternoon I was feeling really tired / run down & continued to feel that way on Sunday.  I think it is a combination of things but regardless I decided skip the workout.  I still did my run since I hated to break the streak.  

I did marginally better on the freggies this week but still have work to do.  My goal for the upcoming week is to continue to improve on the freggies plus do the WOW (workout of the week) since I have yet to get that in since the challenge has started. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

November Stats & December Goals Plus HBBC Week 2

The only thing that went really well this week was keeping the #RWRunStreak alive.  Keep in mind when looking at the weekly recap below, the rules say a 'minimum' of 1 mile run counts to keep the streak going.  

My stated goal for this week was to get my 5-7 freggies in everyday.  Well, I am sad to say I fell short on that one almost every stinking day.  I blame Trader Joe's & my lack of self restraint for this.  I did manage to get 4 servings in everyday but at the end of the day when I should have been reaching for that 5th serving I was pounding down these bad boys.  mmmm, cookies.

Both Thursday & Friday morning I skipped my AM workout.  I just couldn't pry myself out of bed.

Yet for some reason on Saturday when I can sleep in, I wake up at 5:30am.  What is up with that?!  

Week 2 HBBC Recap:

Monday:  Run 1 mile (Day 5 #RWRunStreak), Walked 1 mile, 15 minutes of weights - 3 points
Tuesday: Run 2 miles (Day 6 #RWRunStreak) - 2 points
Wednesday: Swim 35 minutes (1050 yards), Run 1 mile (Day 7 #RWRunStreak) - 4.5 points
Thursday: Run 1 mile (Day 8 #RWRunStreak) - 1 point
Friday: Run 1 mile (Day 9 #RWRunStreak) - 1 point
Saturday: Run 3.55 miles (Day 10 #RWRunStreak), 60 minutes Yoga - 6.55 points
Sunday: Swim 70 minutes, Run 1 mile (Day 11 #RWRunStreak) - 8 points

Bonus Points: 6 - Daily FB check-in

I did buy a bunch of fruits & veggies at the store today so hopefully I will be able to meet my 5-7 freggie goal this week!  

Now on to the monthly goal recap.  Overall, November was an improvement from October.  Some really nice days over the Thanksgiving week helped get me out on the road to meet my bike miles. The Sunday Masters swim practice helped me finally meet my swim goal this month as well.  

Like I mentioned earlier, I haven't bailed on the #RWRunStreak yet.  My hip is feeling surprisingly good.  I was worried that the daily run would aggravate it but I think the fact that I am only running 1 mile most days helps.  I did a couple virtual 5Ks & a Glow in the Night 5K this month.  I even got a medal in the mail for the Thanksgiving Virtual 5K to benefit LLS.  I mentioned in another post but the Virtual races are all the rage these days.  Check out the Virtual Runs FB page for a large listing of runs - most of them benefit charity.

Here is how November went:
  • Swim (Goal/Actual) - 8 / 8 miles
  • Spin / Road (Goal/Actual) - 60 / 78 miles
  • Run (Goal/Actual) - 40 / 34 miles
  • Pilates Reformer (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 2 - uh yeah, 6AM Thursday class is not working for me lately. 
  • Yoga (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 5
  • Xtreme 30 (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 1 - Oopsie - I forgot I made this a goal in November.
  • November N2U CT Challenge - Nada - I really fell off the wagon on this challenge.  
  • Races - 3 - #Run4NYC Virtual 5K, Leukemia & Lymphoma Thanksgiving Virtual 5K & the Glow in the Night 5K
  • Rest Days - 4 but some days were only 1 mile runs.  Those probably should be counted as rest days. 

Total Miles = 125
Total Time = 29.1 hours

2012 Nike Go the Distance Challenge (Goal / Actual) - 200 miles / 99.82 miles - UGH!  Had I only been paying attention I would have swam a few extra laps on Wednesday to hit the 100 mile mark.  

Now on to my December goals.  This month I am going to make it easy.  

December goals: 
  • Follow through with the HBBC Challenge
  • Keep the #RWRunStreak alive provided it doesn't aggravate my hip
  • Do 4 New to Me Challenges to make up for the past few months
  • Start thinking about what fitness goals I want to accomplish in 2013
Happy December y'all!  

Sunday, November 25, 2012

HBBC Week 1

This week started the HBBC Holiday Challenge.  The challenge runs through January 3rd.  I signed up in hopes to keep myself motivated over the holidays & not pile on the pounds.

The other thing that I started was Runners World #RWRunStreak.  Run at least 1 mile every day starting Thanksgiving through New Years.  Most days I will stick to 1 - 2 miles to see how I feel & hopefully it doesn't aggravate my hip.

Monday: 60 minute Spin class - 6 points, 7 Freggies (Fruits & Veggies - saw this on a HBBC post & thought it was a prefect abbreviation!  Of course I can't remember who so I can't give proper credit) - 1 point
Tuesday: 60 minute Swim - 6 points
Wednesday: 25 Mile bike ride w/Steve who happened to fix my flat at 5 mile along with my rear derailleur that we messed up when we re-installed the rear tire.  Fun times. - 8.33 points
Steve fixing my bike
Thursday: 3.5 mile run - Virtual Run for TNT (#RWRunStreak Day 1) - 3.5 points, 1.5 mile hike w/Steve in Red River Gorge - 1.5 points
Always too close to the edge
Friday: 1.05 mile run (#RWRunStreak Day 2) - 1 point , 75 minutes Yoga - 3.75 points
Saturday: 1.35 mile run (#RWRunStreak Day 3) - 1.35 point , 60 minutes Yoga - 3 points, 5 freggies - 1 point
Sunday: 2.5 mile run (#RWRunStreak Day 4) - 2.5 points, 55 minute swim - 5.5 points, 5 freggies - 1 point

Bonus Points:  HBBC Badge on Blog (2), Daily Facebook Check-in (7), family activity on Thanksgiving (2)

Week 1 Total Points = 56.43

My goal for next week is to eat 5-7 servings of fruit & vegetables daily.  In the winter it just isn't my go to food.  I much prefer heavier snacks this time of year.

In other holiday news - Courtney over at Third Time's a Charm is hosting the 2nd Annual Secret Santa Sock Swap.  I participated in it last year & was spoiled by my Secret Santa!  Check out my post HERE.  Looking forward to participating again this year!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Run4NYC & Glow in the Night 5K Reports

I have participated in two 5Ks over the past couple of weeks.  First was the Run4NYC virtual 5K.   This one came about at the time the New York marathon was cancelled.  A website was setup to run a virtual marathon, half marathon or 5K to raise money for Sandy victims.   I mentioned it on Facebook to see if anyone wanted to join me for a weekday evening 5K through downtown Lex.   It never ceases to amaze me that there are always people ready & willing to go for a run.  We picked a day, time & location to meet.  I then plotted the 5K loop from John's Run/Walk shop.

Gotta love the LexRunLadies & dudes!
It was a perfect evening to run & the company was great.   We ran an easy pace through town & was back to the shop before we knew it.  That is one cool thing about running with a group.  Time flies on the run.

Virtual runs are getting pretty popular.  It is a great fundraiser & a lot of them have medals.   There is even a Facebook page you can join that is dedicated to virtual runs.  

Run4NYC 5K Time - 35m28s

The second 5K I ran this month was the Glow in the Night 5K.  I ran this one with a few of my TNT peeps.  This run is very similar to a Color Run except you run in the dark.   These runs are not for speed.  In fact, they didn't even have a timer setup.  Basically you wear a white shirt, some glow sticks & you get color thrown on you.  Then you stand next to some black lights & marvel at how crazy you look.  Sound like fun?  We thought so - it's one of those things that make you feel like a kid again which is exactly what I needed.

Ann-Maria, Audrey, Ruth & me - Before the run
All the color in the air
Ruth, Me, Audrey & Ann-Maria - After the run

Audrey throwing all of her green color in the air

Sunday, November 4, 2012

October Excuses / November Goals

Oh October, you do it to me every year.  Shorter days, allergies that almost always leads to a sinus infection, a need for an excessive amount of sleep - it all leads to a major lack of motivation.  I have been unmotivated to blog.  My first age group win didn't even motivate me to write a race report!  

The other issue this month is that my right hip started bugging me.  This is how my last injury started so I decided to back off spin & to stick to short runs only.  So far that is keeping the pain at bay.  Maybe I will never be able to go long again.  That thought bums me out too.  

This is also the second month in a row that I didn't get a N2U challenge in.  I just couldn't get motivated for this one either.  I think the reasoning for this is because my new job is pretty much wiping me out - there is so much new stuff to learn & people to work with that at the end of the day I need to decompress.  I need activities that I can do on autopilot.  I don't have the mental bandwidth or desire to learn a new activity.  I realized this the last time I went to the West Sixth Run club.  I usually love running in groups because of the social aspect.  All I wanted to do was run on my own.  So instead of the beer run I have been hitting the Arboretum on my way home to get in a solo run after work. 

The Run to Remember kicked off Firefighters week in Lexington.  This run was 4.03 miles honoring the 403 New York civil servants that lost their lives on 9/11.   I never saw my official time since the results were never posted but my Garmin time was 38m06s.  Below is a picture of me coming into the finish.  I was more thrilled that Steve got a picture of me that looked like I was really running as opposed to walking than winning 1st in my age group.

Run to Remember - 1st AG

I did start back up with Masters Swim in October.  I joined Sundays only for now.  It is so nice swimming in the UK pool again.  It is great having someone watch me swim & giving feedback for improvements.  I have been swimming alone for over a year now & although I have made good speed improvements on my own I need additional coaching to get me to the next level.  What that level is I have no idea but I know I can't get there without help.

Below are the numbers for October.  They aren't terrible but not great either.

October Stats:

  • Swim (Goal/Actual) - 8 / 7 miles
  • Spin / Road (Goal/Actual) - 100 / 32 miles
  • Run (Goal/Actual) - 40 / 36 miles
  • Pilates Reformer (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 3
  • Yoga (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 4 
  • Xtreme 30 (Goal/Actual) - 0 / 2
  • October N2U CT Challenge - Nada 
  • Races (Goal/Actual) - 1 / 1 - Run to Remember 4.03 miles - 1st in Age Group!
  • Rest Days (Goal/Actual) - 4-6 / 8  

Total Miles = 75
Total Time = 22.5 hours

2012 Nike Go the Distance Challenge (Goal / Actual) - 200 miles / 92 miles - At this point I will be thrilled to hit 100 miles in the pool!

In order for me not to get too out of control this holiday season I decided to join the 2012 Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge.   I saw a lot of bloggers participate in this last year & thought it would help me with getting / staying motivated throughout the holidays.

Here are my November goals:
  • Swim - 8 miles
  • Spin / Road - 60 miles
  • Run - 40 miles
  • Pilates Reformer - 4
  • Yoga - 4
  • Xtreme 30 - 4
  • November N2U CT Challenge - Who knows?
  • Races - 1 - Probably a Thanksgiving 5K
  • Rest Days - 4-6
Have a great November, a Happy Thanksgiving and Remember - 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

September Stats / October Goals

September was a fun / crazy month.  I did a couple races, was the Van 2 navigator for the Chase the Cure Bourbon Chase team, not to mention work has been pretty intense.  I managed to get most of my workouts in although my main focus was to get all my runs in which I did.  

September Stats:
  • Swim (Goal/Actual) - 8 / 6 miles
  • Spin / Road (Goal/Actual) - 100 / 102 miles
  • Run (Goal/Actual) - 30 / 38 miles
  • Pilates Reformer (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 4
  • Yoga (Goal/Actual) - 4 / 1 
  • September N2U CT Challenge - Does the Bourbon Chase count?  I tried to take a new yoga class but the instructor was a no show then I ran out of time.  
  • Races (Goal/Actual) - 2 / 2 - Fight the Fight 5K & Tri for Sight
  • Rest Days (Goal/Actual) - 4-6 / 12!  This shocks me.  I took 12 rest days but still hit most of my mileage goals.  This was actually my highest mileage month this year.  
Total Miles = 146
Total Time = 23 hours

2012 Nike Go the Distance Challenge (Goal / Actual) - 200 miles / 85 miles 

Mary & Me at Fight the Fight 5K - She won her age group!
Steve won 2nd in Age Group!
Steve w/his Bourbon Chase Medal
Chase the Cure - Team 666
Steve & I took Joel from TriFatty to Cave Run Lake for his first open water swim to help him prepare for his first triathlon in Tennessee.  If you ever sign up for an open water swim triathlon, please, please do a practice open water swim first!!  Even if you are a strong swimmer - still get to the lake before your first race.  There is a huge difference between swimming in a clear pool following a black line versus swimming in dark murky open water.  Not to mention, 25 yards does not look intimidating but 1/2 mile in open water does.  Please trust me on this!!!  Joel ending up doing great.  Read about his open water swim HERE.  His race report should be up soon too.
Me & Joel post swim
I plan to start swimming with the local Masters Swim team on Sundays this month. This should help kickstart my swimming again. I am really looking forward to swimming at the UK pool again!

Here are my October goals:
  • Swim - 8 miles
  • Spin / Road - 100 miles
  • Run - 40 miles
  • Pilates Reformer - 4
  • Yoga - 4
  • October N2U CT Challenge - I hope to get 2 in this month since I missed September
  • Races - 1 - 5K not for sure which one but I am thinking the Black Cat Chase.  I will also be volunteering with Team in Training at the Iron Horse
  • Rest Days - 4-6
Happy October!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

A First Timer's Tri For Sight Race Report

I first met Leah at the inaugural LexRunLadies run in October of last year.

First LexRunLadies Run - Photo from Krissie B
A few months later Leah joined me on one of the 2 relay teams I formed for the indoor tri to benefit Tri 4 Freedom.  I think this is where she may have picked up the Tri bug.
Leah was one of our spinners for the Indoor Tri
Fast forward a few more months & it was Tri for Sight time.  I saw Leah's Facebook post having a slight freak out after driving the bike course.  For those that don't know, Tri for Sight is a long Sprint & a pretty tough first timers race.  It was my first tri in 2009 so I knew Leah could do it!  I loved being a part of her first triathlon experience!

Enough babbling from me - Here is Leah's Tri for Sight Race Report

Last year I decided that I needed to make some changes and get healthy. I'd spent way too much time being lazy and unmotivated. So I joined a gym and hooked up with a great group of ladies, the LexRunLadies. I met so many awesome people who provided motivation and inspiration and before I knew it, I was running more than I ever thought I could.

And then I hurt my knee. Luckily, it wasn't serious, but a couple of months off from running was a serious blow to my motivation. I needed a goal. A big one.

So one day I decided I was going to do a triathlon.

I told people about my goal, and I could tell they thought I was crazy. I thought I was crazy. But I was also committed. So I joined the YMCA and took swimming lessons. I bought a bike off Craigslist. I scoured the Internet and found a good beginner training plan. I swam a little, I ran a little, and I rode my bike on occasion.

Fast forward to the day of the triathlon. It was here and I knew I'd have to trust my training. But if I were being honest, I can tell you that I didn't train enough. I was terrified, but luckily I had some awesome friends there to support me. I had no idea how this would play out, but I knew I wanted to finish. I didn't want to set a time goal since this was my first race, so my goal was just to finish and not be last.

Me, Toa & Leah in Transition
Ready to Swim!
The time came for me to line up and go down to the pool. I watched the other participants for a while since I had over an hour to wait before it was my turn and it helped to ease my nerves a little. But the only thing I could think was "Don't get sick in the pool. There are people watching and this is a really nice pool." Before I knew it, it was time for me to get in the pool. I had to wait 15 seconds before I could start but that time went by in the blink of an eye. And then I was off. I hadn't swam in a 50 meter pool before and I knew it would be tough to swim in a pool that is twice as long as I'm used to swimming in. And it was tough. But I took it slow and steady and didn't get stressed if people passed me (and they did). I rested at the end of the pool when I needed to and flipped over on my back once or twice. The best part of the swim (other than finishing it, obviously) was passing someone! I didn't expect that to happen and it made me feel kind of awesome to be able to do it. Final swim time: 31:53. And not last.

I stumbled out of the pool, lightheaded, knowing I needed to get across the street and into the transition area. But it was cold, I was tired from the swim, and there were small rocks that were rough on the feet. I took my time getting to my bike and getting my shoes on. I put my helmet on and shoved some Shot Blocks down my top (I wanted to take in quite a bit of nutrition while on the bike). Transition 1 time: 7:26.

Heading out on the Bike
I took off on the bike. I was really worried about the bike course since I knew it was really hilly (I'm new to bike riding (cycling?), so all hills are really big to me). The ride was mostly uneventful. I smelled a skunk at one point, which was really uncool since I was already sucking in air, trying to not die. The hills seemed endless, but I finally came upon a sign with my name on it. I thought it was really awesome that there was another Leah participating. And I was going to pretend it was for me and speed up. Turns out, that sign was for me. Remember those awesome ladies from the LexRunLadies that I mentioned earlier? They do awesome stuff like that. It reminded me that I need to pay it forward sometime soon.

The bike portion went by much quicker than I anticipated, although the hills didn't let up. I didn't get lost and I even passed one person! And then she passed me back. I knew I wasn't last but I also knew there wasn't too many people behind me. And then the motorcycle cops started riding behind me. I instinctively sped up and eventually passed the woman I had passed earlier. She later thanked me for pacing her, but really, I was thankful for her pacing me and keeping me motivated. Final bike time: 1:34:53. I didn't think there was any way I could finish the bike anywhere near 1.5 hours. Also? Wasn't last.

This transition was pretty uneventful, other than nearly falling off my bike on the dismount. My legs were pretty much jello at this point. I pushed my bike over to the rack but couldn't get it on the rack by myself. Some kind volunteer put the bike up for me and I was off. Transition 2 time: 1:58.

Here's where things got really tough. When I got back from the bike, half of the participants had already packed their stuff and left. I knew that most of these people had started almost an hour and a half before me. And a lot of them are triathlete rockstars. But it was still really disheartening. And I was getting tired, my legs hurt, I had a cramp in my back that started in the pool and only got worse on the bike. And I was done, mentally and physically.

But I wasn't done. Four miles stood between me and the finish line. I'd crawl if I had to. And I practically did. There were more hills (we ran in the Arboretum), and there weren't many runners left. At one point, I hadn't seen anyone for a while and started to wonder if I was lost. Luckily, I wasn't lost and I was almost finished. I hobbled along at barely a walk, knowing it was almost over. And then I saw Andrea. She ran up to meet me and offer some much needed encouragement. I hit the final stretch and Andrea headed off to the finish line to meet me there. I kind of ran towards the finish line, saw my awesome friends with their awesome signs, and heard Sam Dick say "Leah, you are a triathlete!" I crossed the finish line and couldn't decide whether I wanted to cry or throw up. I ended up not doing either one. Final run time: 59:14. Surprisingly, not last. 

Leah Finishing Strong!
I finished my first triathlon in 3:15:25. I wasn't last, although I was pretty darn close to the end. But you know what? I had never felt like such a bad ass and I didn't care if it took me all day to finish. I had just done something I never thought I'd be able to do. I just know I'll need to train better for the next one!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Bourbon Chase - The Good, the Bad and the Tragic

Readers Advisory - No joke - the tragic part is just that.  If you are an animal/dog person you may want to skip this section.  I will give you ample warning before getting to the tragic part so you can read the Good & the Bad then bail.  

2012 Bourbon Chase - 'The Bourbon Chase celebrates the best of Kentucky.  It is a 200-mile journey across the Bluegrass State – through our historic bourbon distilleries, across our majestic horse country, and into our enchanting small towns.'

250 Teams make up the Bourbon Chase.  Each team has 12 runners per team, 2 vans (6 runners in each) and 2 drivers. Some teams even have navigators.  Registration starts in January & sells out extremely in a day or something. 

The Bourbon Chase consists of 36 legs, each runner completes 3 legs each.  Basically, each runner on our team ran ~10K every 10 hours or so.  Some runners ran a little more, some a little less depending on the legs.  Van 1 runs legs 1-6, 13-18 & 25-30 and Van 2 to run legs 7-12, 19-24, 31-36.  

Last year, Steve mentioned wanting to do the Bourbon Chase as a bucket list item.  So in August when the local Team in Training BC team needed another runner for an injured teammate he stepped up to the plate.  The team was planning to have navigators which I volunteered to do. 

This is how we ended up on Chase the Cure - Team #666 - One of 250 Teams running the 2012 Bourbon Chase on September 28-29th.  

At the first Van transition - Everyone looking fresh at the start!
The Good

1.  Van #2 - OK I may be biased but our van rocked!  We all got along well & despite spending 30 hours together we had minimal conflict.  These events have a ton of things going on & there are a lot of details to pay attention to.  If you ever want to do one of these relays you have to be pretty organized but be willing to adjust if things don't go quite as expected.  

For example, the packets don't include addresses for the transitions.  I have no idea why but maybe the organizers consider it to be part of the relay 'experience'.   Coming out of Makers Mark the volunteer pointed us in the wrong direction so we had to do a little extra navigating.  We still beat our runner (who happened to be Steve & was pissed because we never passed him so he assumed we were lost) but it did cause us a little extra stress.   After the first couple of transitions we found our groove though.

Van 2 awesomeness!
Chase the Cure - The team raised over $12,000 for LLS!
2.  The volunteers were outstanding!  Putting on an event as large as the Bourbon Chase is no small feat.  200 miles across Central Kentucky & going through so many towns - it is impressive to me how well things were run.

3.  The Hotel Rooms.  If you do this race (or similar) get a couple hotel rooms.  You won't spend a ton of time here but each team will get ~ 3-4 hours between each van transition.  For us that meant ~10PM-2AM & ~8:30AM-Noon.  That is enough time for everyone to shower & catch a couple hours of sleep.  Even if you don't sleep well at least you can stretch out & get clean.  I can't imagine passing the time any other way.  I am old.  I need some comfort!

4.  Watching all 6 runners in our van finishing their legs.  This race is tough.  Witnessing all these folks accomplish something that very few have was pretty damn cool.  I was grateful to be a part of it.

5.  Yelling 6-6-6 at every transition.  Some on our team did not like getting this number & it is understandable but I had fun with it.   I yelled it loud & proud.  Why not?

6.  Seeing lots of friends at various transition points.  When my phone had service I was able to see so many of my Facebook friends Bourbon Chase updates.  Some of them I knew were close so when I finally saw them it was cool!

Beth looking adorable going out on her first run!

Finally caught with Coy at Exhange 32 or was it 33?
7.  The finish line celebration in downtown Lexington.   Although by the time we got to the finish line I really wasn't much interested in eating & drinking but I was impressed with the setup.  It was a quite the street party.

The Bad

1.  The blow up doll team.  Not kidding.  There was one team that carried 2 blow up dolls the entire race.  At the Danville transition I witnessed one of the guys doing what I hope was a simulated sex scene with full blow orgasm sounds.  Seriously made me want to vomit.  

Blow up doll Team - Photo from Bre
There were girls on the Blowup Doll Team too. Photo from Bre
2.  Mean spirited guy.  There was one guy on Nita's first leg that was not nice.  When she passed him she gave him some encouragement.  He responded with a big fat F-U.  Not cool dude.  On leg 1?  Really?  Stay home next time.  

3.  The excessive amount of emails the week leading up to the event.  I get so many at work & was extremely overwhelmed that my personal account blowing up like that.  There is so much information that goes out in the last week it was hard to keep up.  In fact, I couldn't & some things I missed like the fact the estimated start times changed in the last few days.  I was looking at an older version & got some of my estimated finish times buggered up.  Not too big of a deal but there were a couple of transitions we weren't fully ready for. 

In summary, this is a fun event!  At the finish line I wasn't so sure if I would ever want to do another one but after a full nights sleep I think I would be open to it.  Although, if I do ever decide to do it I will pick up a team closer to the event.  I wouldn't want to spend months planning for it.  There is no shortage of teams looking for runners a month prior to the event.  Heck even the week of the event some teams were looking for people due to runners dropping out at the last minute.

Here are a few pictures from our 33 hours of fun!

Steve before his first leg
After Van 2's second leg - At smelly Four Roses

Checking off #3!
Ready to be done!   
Bre excited to get to the finish!
Tonya is done!  Love the face!

Van 1 runners after their final legs at Woodford Reserve
Having fun waiting for Steve to finish his 3rd leg
Louis finishing his last leg
Matt checking off #3!

Remember the Readers Advisor?  STOP READING HERE otherwise keep scrolling down

The Tragic

Some folks will wonder why I am writing about this.  For me, it is how I heal & get past things.  I need to talk about it & express myself.  Some folks get over things like this by never talking about them again.  I can't do that.  It will eat me up inside.  It will give me nightmares.  That is why I am writing about this.

While Louis, runner 9, was running his first leg the rest of us were heading to Springfield for the next transition.  There was a long line of Vans making their way down to transition to downtown Springfield.  It was about 6PM & there were quite a few spectators along the sidewalks.

There was a couple of people with their dog walking on the sidewalk.  I didn't even notice them at first.  I was watching ahead for runners & other vans.   All of a sudden I saw their dog ran out into the road & was hit by the van in front of us.  Very badly hit.  It happened so stinking fast.  I am not sure how long I screamed.  Maybe it was just in my head.  I felt like I was screaming.  Once you see something like this you can never un-see it.  You can never forget it.  It was horrible.  We stopped.  We didn't know what to do.  We just sat there in shock watching the agony of the owner watch her dog die in the street.   After some unknown amount of time - honestly it may have only be a couple of minutes but it felt like an eternity - the other person started waving all the vans to go on.  

We drove past & parked.  I felt nauseous.  I felt terrible for the van driver that hit the dog.   They were just at the wrong place at the wrong time.  If we got there 15 seconds earlier our van would have hit the dog.  

I got mad.  Why the hell was the dog off leash?  Who knows.  Springfield is a super small community.  Maybe they didn't realize there would be so much traffic.  Maybe they just hopped out of their car & the dog took off before they could get the leash on him.  Then I felt horrible for the owner.  Watching their agony as they try to comfort their dog in his final moments was gut wrenching.  

Finally, I felt grateful that the dog did not suffer long.  From the looks of it, the dog was gone by the time we passed them.  

During our first rest at the hotel it was all I could see when I shut my eyes.  Instead of dwelling on it, every time the memory popped into my head I took a deep breathe & sent some comforting thoughts & prayers to the owner.  I said another for the driver of the van to give them comfort too. 

Bad things happen sometimes and it sucks.  All I could do was send those folks some healing thoughts & prayers.  I continue to do so.

Later at the 2nd to last exchange I saw a women playing with her dog off leash.  They were playing in the field where all the vans were parking next to the road.  I walked over to her & told her that she really needed to put her dog on a leash.  We already witnessed one dog get run over & killed I didn't want to see another one.  Her response was 'he stays with me & never runs away'.  My response?  I am sure that is what the other owner would have said before her dog was run over & I walked away.  I later saw her holding the dog close to her which made me feel better.  Maybe not the kindest thing I have ever done but I was NOT going to witness another dog get run over.  


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