Tuesday, January 31, 2012

January Stats & February Goals

Although the calendar says January it sure didn't feel like it.  Very mild, hardly any snow, I love it!

January Stats:

Pilates Reformer (N2U CT Challenge) = 4
Pilates Ball (N2U CT Challenge) = 3
Spin = 4 / 64 miles
Swim = 13 / 12 miles
Yoga = 3
P90X = 3 (Chest & Back (1), Shoulders & Arms (1), Legs & Back (1), Abs (2))

Total Miles = 78
Total Time = 31.5 Hours

2012 Nike Go the Distance Total / Goal = 12 miles / 200 miles

I am bummed that I ended up with a nasty head cold the last 3 days of the month.  I was hoping to make it through the winter without getting sick.  No such luck. 

I was signed up for a Foam Roller class but it was cancelled because they only had 3 people signed up for it. So in lieu of that I decided to spend more time in the pool working on form.  

Injury status - Bleh.  Still injured & not running.   I started ART on the 24th.  So far I have gone 3 times.   He said if I didn't have a 50% improvement in 5 weeks he will refer me to another specialist.   Until I get through the 5 weeks I am reserving judgement.  I will do a more detailed post on this later.

Favorite Gear - SwiMP3 - This was a Christmas gift from Steve.  It has come in handy since I have been upping my time in the pool.  I plan to do a review on this in the near future.

Weight - This month I lost 5 of the 8 pounds I gained post injury.   I am pretty happy about that.

February Exercise Goals

Swim - 18 miles
Pilates Reformer - 5
Pilates Ball - 3
Yoga - 4
P90X - 8 (The new videos will be used for the N2U CT Challenge)

The last spin class I took aggravated my injury so I am taking some time off from spin again...grrr. 

I am seriously considering signing up for a Total Immersion workshop in February.

February plans for addressing the injury

ART - 4 more weeks
Acupuncture - 3 sessions

Thursday, January 26, 2012

BGTC's 11

I was tagged by these three fabulous bloggers - Journey of a Canuck Mom on the Run, You Just have to Tri! & Thats Just How I Roll.  Go check them out!

So here are the rules - you probably already know them since this has been flying around the blogs this week.

1. Post these rules.
2. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
3. Answer the questions set for you in their post.
4. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer.
5. Go to their blog and tell them you've tagged them.
6. No stuff in the tagging section about you are tagged if you are reading this. You legitimately have to tag 11 people.

Here are the BGTC's 11:
  1. I went to New Zealand & Australia the summer I graduated college.  It was awesome.
  2. I graduated after my Junior year of High School. 
  3. My first car was a '67 Baracuda.  The boys loved it & I always had willing volunteers to work on it.
  4. I had mono when I was 39.  
  5. When I was 17 I thought my career would be in graphic design.  I graduated College of Engineering 10 years later.
  6. My favorite color is blue.
  7. My first cat was named Zsa Zsa.  It was a male cat.  I was 5 when I named him.  
  8. I have worn glasses since I was in 2nd grade & contacts since 7th grade. 
  9. My favorite food is Italian.  Really good Italian.  Not the crap we have in Lexington.
  10. I have good skin but I am about 50% grey.  Thank goodness for hair color!
  11. I used to perm my hair from my early teens to mid-20's.  I never knew I had naturally curly hair.  I just thougth it was frizzy without the perms.  I finally figured out how to style my naturally curly hair in my late 20's.  duh.

1.  Did you have a childhood nickname?  What was it?  Yep, Andi
2.  What is the weirdest thing you have ever done while driving?  Can't think of any weird stuff just naughty which I will keep to myself thank you very much.
3.  Do you have any strange phobias? What are they?  I hate spiders - not sure if that is considered strange though.
4.  If you could travel to anyplace right now without worrying about finances or how long you are gone, where would you go? Why?  Europe - I have only been to Rome & Belgium and loved both and I know there is so much more to see.
5.  What was the last movie you saw in the theater?   The Hangover 2 - so not worth the money. 
6.  What song always makes you happy when you hear it?  Why?  Bob Marley's Three Little Birds 
7.  If you had to move to another state right now, where would you move and why? North Carolina - Centrally located to Mountains, Ocean, family & friends
8.  Salty or sweet?  What is your favorite?  Sweet.  Cookies.  All cookies
9.  Do you have any pets?  What are they are?  Yep, Karma the Beagle
10.  Snow or rain?  Pick your poison.  Rain.  I had plenty of snow to last my lifetime living in Chicago.
11.  Name someone you would love to meet right now, who is currently living?  Why would you like to meet them?  I think it would be really cool to meet Michelle Obama.  I love strong, driven, successful women. 
Questions from You Just have to Tri!

1.      Name 1 blogger would like to meet.  Swim Bike Mom
2.      Do you log your workouts? If so where or how?  Yep, lately on daily mile but when I am not injured & running & riding a lot I log it on Garmin connect.
3.      What is your favorite thing to do on a Friday or Saturday night?  Friday Dinner & a drink or two with hubs & friends
4.      What are you addicted to?  Coffee
5.      Do you share your blog with everyone?  Nope
6.      Tell me one way you are different then you were 10 years ago.  I am now a triathlete
7.      Hot, medium, or mild, how spicy do you like your food?  HOT
8.      I’ve met people who barley break a bead when they workout and I’m always amazed at
this! Which are you sweater or not?  Sweater
9.      I’m thinking of doing a marathon, tell me which one you would do if you were going to do one and why? Or tell me about your favorite one you have done.  Chicago.  My Dad ran Chicago a few times in the 80s & it will be my first to honor his memory.  
10.     Music or no music when you work out?  Depends on my mood
11.     I need a book for my trip to Mexico to read on the beach. What would you suggest?  The Hunger Games series

Questions from Thats Just How I Roll

1. If you only had one show on the TV to watch for eternity, what would it be?  Twilight Zone
2. Dogs or cats? Explain.  Dogs - they make me feel like they appreciate me so much more than my cats ever did.
3. Pasta or rice for your carb loading?  Pasta
4. Can you live without facebook?  Yep
5. Does your house cleaning suffer for your sport?  It suffers regardless
6. Do you log your training like an obsessive compulsive squirrel on PCP?  Kind of but my husband is worse
7. Ladies - Heels of flats? Men - Boxers or briefs?  Flats
8. Does anyone else ALWAYS wear a singlet under their normal clothes? Or am I the only mad one?  Nope I don't do that
9. If money was no object, what bit of sporting equipment would you buy first?  Endless Pool
10. Have you chucked a sickie to train?  Nope
11. Sleeveless or sleeved wetsuit?  Sleeveless
Questions for the Tagged
  1. Morning or Evening Workouts?
  2. Vanilla or Chocolate?
  3. Dogs or Cats?
  4. Summer or Winter?
  5. Pool or Open Water Swim?
  6. Drive or Fly?
  7. Magazines or Books?
  8. Fiction or Non-Fiction?
  9. Comedy or Drama?
  10. Mountains or Beach?
  11. Racer or Cheerleader?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Total Immersion Lesson 4 and a New Baseline

When I originally started the Total Immersion plan on December 4th I thought I would wait until I was done with all 8 lessons before re-timing my 500 yard baseline.    I also initially thought I would spend 1 week on each lesson.  That was true for lesson 1 & lesson 2 but lesson 3 I spent 4 weeks on before moving to lesson 4.  I decided that it may be good to see how (or if) I was progressing after 6 weeks of drills.

I was a little worried that all this drilling was going to be a big waste of time.  My workouts for the past 4 weeks have gone something like this:  200 yard WU, 600-1200 yard TI drills, 200 WD.  I have done NO speed work during this time & haven't swam more than 200 yards straight in the last month.

This morning I decided to do another 500 yard baseline.  Here is how today's swim went:  150 WU, 500 Baseline, 50 yard recovery, 200 TI drills, 1000 yard free.

On December 4th my 500 yard time was - 13m15s
Today my 500 yard time was - 12m20s

55 seconds faster!  I was seriously stoked.  6.9% improvement doing drills only!  No speed work.  Shoot, I haven't even done any endurance swims for awhile.  My target for these baselines is to swim as hard as I can yet keep breathing every 3rd breath.  So I feel pretty confident I was pushing just as hard on December 4th as I was today.

Although I am really happy with the improvement I know I still have lots of room for improvement.  There is a TI workshop in February in Cincinnati that I am now seriously considering taking.  I have read all sorts of reviews both for & against the workshops.

From what I can gather the majority of cons are from folks that are already really good & fast swimmers.  Their complaints are around the time it takes to do the drills & the fact that their endurance decreases due to the time spent on drills.  Some stated that their times did not improve.  I have also read that the workshops are intense & they cover a lot of material so it is tough if you are going in cold.

Some of the pros - Some said that although their times did not improve they felt refreshed & ready for the bike.  They did not expend as much energy during the swim.   There were folks that said their stroke count reduced considerably.  FYI - mine seems to have dropped by about 4 strokes per 25 yards.  Embarrassedly it is still 26 per 25 yards.  Again - I have lots of room for improvement.

So in a nutshell, I think this workshop has the potential to really help me.   Since I have already been doing the drills for several weeks I am hoping it will be more refinement than having to learn a bunch of new drills.  The instructors work with you in the water while videotaping your stroke above & below water.  Over the 2 days there are several hours in the pool in addition to classroom work which from the reviews is spent reviewing your videos.  I am going to wait a couple more weeks before I decide whether or not I am going to sign up.

Tomorrow I start Lesson 4 which includes the following drills:

Zipper Skate
Zipper Switch
Double Zipper Switch
Triple Zipper Switch

2012 Nike GTD Swim Total = 9.74 miles

Thursday, January 19, 2012

January N2U CT Challenge - Pilates & More Pilates

Kim over at (Just) Trying is for Little Girls is the host of the '2012 New to You' Cross Training Challenge.  This is the first of 12 New to Me Cross Training Challenge posts. 

I actually have 2 new to me classes that I am taking this month but they are both sorta related.  One is the Pilates reformer & the other is Pilates Ball.  The reformer class is a 12 week session every Monday night over at the Beaumont Y.  The Pilates Ball class is a drop in class at High Street Y every Wednesday night.  

Back in August when I first joined the Y I started taking Alicia's 7AM Pilates Mat class.  Wow is she a killer...er...I mean her class is a killer!  Every time I take that class I feel like I have no abs.  Her strength is amazing!   I went pretty regularly from August to December.  Since I am swimming most mornings now I haven't made it to the 7AM class since before Christmas. 

The Reformer class was recommended by my PT.  I must admit that after taking Alicia's class the Reformer & the ball seem like child's play.    Since this is my first Reformer class I have to start out in the beginners class.  In the beginners class they teach you how to use the equipment & do the exercises properly.  I really like that they focus on correct form.  In the mat class I regularly felt like my form was bad.   I also like how you get a good stretch & strength workout during the class.  I have only been to a three classes & so far it hasn't been too challenging.  I suspect that will change as the session goes on.  At least I hope so.   I will wait until the session is close to over to make my final verdict.  

They look a bit like torture devices, don't they?

The Pilates Ball class is...well...a ball!  Josette is an awesome instructor.  She teaches a lot of the Yoga classes at High Street & Beaumont.   This is a pretty unique class as far I as am I concerned.  I have been to a lot of gyms in town & have never seen a similar class.  We do a little cardio, a little upper body weights, some balance work (think squat on top of ball & balance) and of course lots of core work.  I am digging this class.  Josette gives us different options depending on our experience levels.  This class is definitely a keeper!

Just one of the many poses we do

Monday, January 16, 2012

2012 Nike Go the Distance

I saw on one of my fellow Team Tough Chik's blogs a post about signing up for the 2012 Nike Go the Distance via US Masters Swim.  Although I am not currently swimming with our local US Masters swim team I did renew my annual USMS membership.  Considering I am in a very swim focused period & may be for a while, I figured why not sign up.

So sign up I did.  My goal is to swim 200 miles this year.  That is quite a stretch for me but hey, it's not like I can run so I might as well swim until my arms fall off.  As of today I have swam 7.64 miles.  Yep, I got quite a ways to go.

After setting this goal I figured I better stock up on my swim shampoo, conditioner & lotion.   By joining USMS I received discount codes for several on-line swim stores.  One was for my favorite TriSwim products.  I bought the 64 ounce jugs of shampoo, conditioner & lotion.  Thanks to the 30% discount I saved around $75.  Never mind that I spent $190 on product.  I do think everyone I work with will appreciate the fact that I don't reek of chlorine every morning!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Good Karma - 1Q12 Edition

I am really excited to announce the first Good Karma agency for 2012.  I introduced the Good Karma feature back in October after attending the local CASA 5K/10K.   When I saw Paula's post on Facebook earlier this week introducing the revamped website I immediately knew that I wanted to highlight Tri 4 Freedom for this quarters Good Karma agency.  
I first met Paula on a midnight run last summer.   She was completing her first 27 hour triathlon to raise awareness for human trafficking.  Why 27 hours?  To bring awareness to the 27 million people enslaved in the world.  Tri 4 Freedom's mission is committed to raising awareness about the global extent of human exploitation and empowering survivors of human trafficking and marginalized communities by producing sustainable triathlon clothing.

Tri 4 Freedom is currently planning this years 27 hour triathlon.  The 27 hours will be broken up into 2.5-hour swim, 12.5-hour bike, and 12-hour run.  Last year only Paula did the entire 27 hours with tons of people coming out to ride & run with her throughout the day & night. This year a few more people are participating.  You can read Paula's 2011 27 Hour recap HERE.     

Like I said in the original Tri 4 Freedom post, there are endless causes to get involved in and they all need your support.  Pick one that is meaningful to you & get involved.  You won't regret it!!! 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

'New to You' Cross Training Challenge

I have been reading lots of posts this week about 2012 race schedules.  Although I love reading about different races it is making me a little sad since I am still not running.   The only race I am registered for is the Iron Girl Atlanta in May.  I signed up for this one in early November back when I really had no idea how long this injury would take to heal, well, I still don't.  So when I read Kim's post today on (Just) Trying is for Little Girls about the '2012 New to You' Cross Training Challenge I thought it sounded really  cool & signed up.   The challenge is really simple - try a new cross training workout every month.

So instead of planning out races for the next 12 months I will be researching different cross training activities to do.  Seriously, this is exactly what I need right now.   Yay!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

LexRunLadies - Resolution Runners

Krissie has created this fabulous running group in Lexington.  It is for the ladies & catered to all paces.  The group is called LexRunLadies.  She started a Resolution Runners C25K on January 1st.  With the overwhelming response she is kicking off another Resolution Runners C25K on January 15th.

Interested? Check out Resolution Runners HERE

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Team Donner

This is a little late but since we were on vacation & held our mail I just received the last card yesterday.    Kim at (Just) Trying is for Little Girls hosted a Holiday card exchange.

Team Donner included the following blogs.  Go check out these awesome ladies!

Hannah at  Hannahviolin 
Cassandra at  Running for Three
Emily at Travel with Emily
Erica at I Run Because...I Can 
XLMIC at Taking It On
and me at Bluegrass Tri Chick
My favorite card was the surfing Santa which makes sense since Cassandra is from Hawaii....lucky girl!

Thanks to Kim for hosting!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Total Immersion Lesson 3

I started lesson 3 the week before vacation but I didn't feel like I had a good handle on the drills so I am repeating the lesson this week.

Lesson 3 (Swim with your Body) includes the following drills:

Spear Switch
Two Pause Switch
One Pause Switch
One Arm Switch
Rhythmic Switching & Breathing

When I bought the DVD I also purchased the Total Immersion book.  I have been watching the DVD but have only managed to read about half of the book.  Monday night I was reading through one of the chapters & came across a section about kicking.  The section started off with the question 'why do I go backwards when kicking & drilling?'   That caught my eye since that is exactly what was happening to me when doing these drills.  I read further & they said the main reason for this is inflexible ankles &  the 'adult onset' swimmer followed by lack of coordination.   I am pretty sure I suffer from all of those issues!

The book recommended trying fins for drills in lesson 2 & on.  I brought my fins to the pool this morning.  They made a big difference!  I did a gentle kick just to keep forward momentum.  They allowed me to really focus on the drills.

At this rate it will be around middle of February before I get through all the lessons.  I am really trying to give this an honest effort & today was the first day that things started to click.  I am going to try to get in the pool 3-4 days a week before work.

I am using the below lamp to help me get up these cold dark mornings.  It is a sunrise lamp.  About 15 minutes before the alarm is set to go off it gradually gets brighter & brighter.  I have had it for years but haven't used it since moving to Lexington.  I pulled it out on Monday & have been using it since.  It also helps that I have to get out of bed to turn it off!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Team Tough Chik

I joined the 2012 Team Tough Chik a few weeks ago.  As of yesterday they had 99 team but I imagine they have topped 100 by now.  So far I am amazed at the camaraderie I have seen with this group of ladies.  Shannon has created a private Team TC Facebook page for all the teammates to connect.  Many on the team are also bloggers.  There are tons of running/tri/cycling events on the calendar so it will be easy to meet up with fellow TC'ers.   My google reader has blown up over the past few days due to all the new blogs I am following.

I was a part of Team Aquaphor last year & it was amazing.  You don't realize how much being on a team will push your limits.  You train & race harder.  Period.

If you have ever wondered what it would be like to race on a team I suggest joining this one.   You don't have to be an elite athlete to join either.  The only requirement is that you are female, purchase one of the kits (you know you will purchase running/tri kit this year anyway so you might as well get it at a discount) & commit to 1 race.  That is it.  Easy peasy.

The deadline to join has been extended to January 7th.   I am hoping some other Kentucky peeps will join!

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Years in North Ft Myers

We spent the second half of our vacation visiting my aunt in North Ft Myers.   
Steve geochaching & Karma supervising
Found it! 
Found another one
We ate cake...chocolate ganache to be exact 
while Karma watched
We went to Sanibel Island
where Steve found another geocache
We walked along the beach & wondered why all the dead fish?
We later found out they had a red tide
The sunset was beautiful though
Sanibel sunset picture
We went to Eco Preserve
where Steve found another geochache

4 Mile Cove
No alligators were seen
We checked out Ft Myers beach - beautiful sand!
Fun sand gator
and sand crab
Me & my aunt on NYE
Me & Steve
We had a fabulous NYE dinner with my aunt & a few of her friends.  We were home & in bed by 11PM.  Not real exciting but we were planning to get up at 5AM for the long drive home.

Vacation was awesome but in typical fashion it was too short.   We drove home yesterday in 14 hours which was shocking since it took over 16 hours to get to St. Pete.  We were happy to be home by 8PM on Sunday although not so happy with the temperature.  It is ccccold.  We even had snow today.  

We plan to take a few extra days next Christmas so we have more time there.  

A few things we would like to do next year - 

Kayak around Sanibel - hopefully there will be no red tide.  

Bring our bikes to Sanibel too.   There are bike paths all over the island. 

Bike more of the Pinellas Trail.  

Check out Edison & Ford Winter Estates


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