Plugging Away- an Update Post
The last time I had a blog I felt the need to always have beautifully crafted clever posts with nice pictures. This became overwhelming to me and I just stopped posting entirely. I wish I had kept up with that blog to have an even better record of my progress, but I don’t.
That’s what has happened for me here too. I want all of my posts to be awesome and in proper chronological order. But, I don’t have time for that. So instead of just posting what I can here and there, I haven’t been posting at all. I have this long list of posts I want to sit down and write, but it just isn’t going to happen.
So, in order to get myself caught up to where I can post about my somewhat mundane day to day life and training, here’s a dump of what we’ve been up to over the past couple of months:
Cade paced my sister for 38 miles at the Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run. Kerrie didn’t have the day she was hoping for (ankle injury early on slowed her down), but she still finished in under 24 hours. Awesome stuff.
We went for a trail run at my favorite place in the area- Hitchcock Nature Center. I forget I’m in Nebraska when I’m running out there. The trails are very challenging and very well maintained. It’s a great place to lose myself in nature and suffer while running (ok, hiking) up some super steep hills. I need more Hitchcock in my life.
We raced the Omaha Triathlon. Well, I raced the Omaha Triathlon. Cade and I are in charge of setting up the swim course before the race. We got to the race venue at o’dark thirty and put the buoys out with plenty of time to set up transition. One problem: Cade only had one cycling shoe in his transition bag. I was amused. He was not. I convinced him to do the swim anyway for practice. He swam and then ran all over the run course cheering and motivating our friends in the heat of the day. I had a pretty good race myself. I was pleased with my swim, surprised by my bike, and felt good about the run. I’m always slow on that course compared to other olympic distance races. It’s tough and hilly. I walked all of the hills on the run, but I was able to keep a better pace on the run overall. Progress. I didn’t quite beat last year’s time, but that’s ok.
We did a triple. Well, it was supposed to be a triple. A triple in our circle of triathlon friends is a bike run bike run bike run combo workout. I ended up doing a long kind of duathlon type thing- 48 miles on the bike, 13.1 miles running, and 22 miles on the bike. It was super duper windy and hot that day. That last 22 miles seemed like it took forever, but I did it and I’m stronger for it.
We traveled to Boulder, CO and raced the Boulder 70.3. The swim start was great. They are doing a rolling start now instead of just a mass start. This means that racers line up in order based upon their estimated swim time. I lined up in the 42-44 minute area. Cade lined up with me even though he thought he would be faster. It’s always nice to start races together. Our group went under the start line and as we were wading out into the water before the first dive and stroke, Cade said “Hey Molls, want to go for a swim?” I said “Hell yeah!” and off we went.
My swim was good. I felt comfortable the whole time and was just rocking along in my little rhythm. I was not stressed and not really putting out too much effort. I swam reasonably straight and didn’t have too much trouble with sighting or traffic. I looked at my watch as I ran over the timing mat and was pleased to see 40:30. Not too shabby! I went in knowing I would be happy with 45:00.
T1 was uneventful. I took a little bit of time to settle, get my shoes on, get my helmet, my sunglasses, my bike, and set off for the bike course.
At the beginning of the bike course I was wondering what the heck I was doing out there. I felt like I was riding through mud. It was a slight uphill until about mile 8 or so and I just could not get my legs. I decided not to push for fear of blowing myself up so I just slogged my way up the hill.
About mile 6 or so I got passed by my friend Michelle. She complimented me on my fast swim time and blew by me. She’s amazing on the bike.
About mile 7 I heard “MOLLSSSS!” It was Cade, behind me??!! That meant I beat him in the swim. That’s never happened before! He, too, complimented me on my swim, asked me how I was doing, and blew by me. Seeing him out on the course is one of my favorite things about racing.
After mile 9 or so the bike course got FUN. We had a sweet long winding downhill where I was averaging around 26 miles per hour. I finally got my legs back and was cranking away. The course was so beautiful and the terrain was just perfect- rolling hills. I loved it. I got three compliments from fellow racers on my bike- one from a dude. Yeah, my bike is pretty awesome.
The last 3 or 4 miles of the bike course were rough. There was a headwind and my low back was starting to bug me a bit pushing into the wind. I backed off my effort level and just rolled back to the park. I still managed to average around 18 mph for the 56 miles.
T2 was also uneventful. I grabbed my water bottle, got sunscreened by a volunteer, and set out on the run course.
Almost immediately my legs started cramping up. My right calf was a little crampy on the bike, but it was no big deal. On the run it became a big deal. My calves cramped. My quads cramped. My hamstrings cramped. My shins cramped. I took salt tabs, I ate salty food, I drank water, I drank coke. Nothing was helping. I knew it was going to be a rough 13.1 miles. I roasted in the sun, but kept putting one foot in front of the other. I ran when I could and walked when I couldn’t. I put ice in my bra and in my hat to stay cool. I was so happy to see my sister on the dam. I told her about my cramping and she told me to drink more and maybe try taking a couple of gels. I did and I felt better for a while. Then the cramps came back full force. At one point both of my legs seized up from the knee down and I couldn’t move. My friend Polly happened to be right there and she rubbed the cramps out so I could keep moving. I started counting steps to take my mind off the cramping- run 100 steps, walk 100 steps, run 100 steps, walk 100 steps. That worked for a while and got me closer to the finish line. I was not about to walk down the finish chute, so I ran and my legs started to seize up so I finished by doing a little limp shuffle run don’t fall down don’t stop move. It worked. I finished in 7:15. I was happy with that- especially since my run was not exactly stellar. Oh well, live to race another day.
Cade had trouble on the run too. It was really hot. He had a pretty good time overall though. Next time we can both do better. It’s a little hard to believe that was the first half ironman for both of us. We just went straight to the full ironman last year. We intended to do a half, but with Lucy being sick it just didn’t happen. Now we both have baseline times to strive to beat next time.
Boulder is an awesome venue for a race. I’ll definitely go back.
Which leads me to… We signed up for Boulder Ironman 2014. Yep, there’s another full ironman on the calendar. I’m super excited. Two full ironman races in less than one year? Yes, sir. I’m in.
We rode 61.5 miles with great friends on a Saturday. It was my friend Erin’s longest ride to date. She did awesome.
I did a night trail run. Cade was out of town. The Greater Omaha Area Trailrunnerz (GOATz) had an informal night trail run at Schramm Park. I went out for two loops for around 7 miles. It’s amazing how different the woods look by headlamp in the pitch dark night. I need a few more night runs to prep me for Run Rabbit Run.
I ran a loop at lake Cunningham. Lake Cunningham has some great horse trails that are also excellent running trails. I ran a loop with friends last weekend. Cade was still out of town. We ended up with about 8 miles on the trails.
We ran 9.6 miles on Tranquility Park Trails. We ran almost the entire tranquility trail system. There are two little loops in the middle of the park that we did not do. But, Cade ran with me the entire time and I was going fast enough that he wasn’t just bored to tears. That’s progress, folks.
I started eating Paleo again. I admit that I’m not 100% compliant. If I get too caught up with being compliant all the time it stresses me out. But, I know I feel much better if I eat paleo, so I’m making an effort to do it as much as I can. I’m feeling pretty good. I can tell I’m getting some good fat burning workouts in (as opposed to carb burning) and am seeing some changes in my body composition already.
I had an asthma attack. Well, I think so at least. I’ve been coughing all. the. time. lately. It’s not a productive cough or a normal allergy type cough- just a cough- and once it starts, I can’t stop. One night I was coughing and wheezing in between and just could not make it stop. I found the rescue inhaler I got a couple years ago and took two puffs. That ended the coughing. I went to see my Dr. friend the next day and he gave me a daily inhaler to test out for a couple of months. I’ve been on it for a week now and it seems to be helping. It tastes super nasty though. I don’t think I’m supposed to taste it. Perhaps I’m doing it wrong.
I built my bike! We broke our bikes down and packed them in Ruster Sports Hen House cases to go to Boulder. I finally built my bike after being home for two weeks. For shame. But it’s done now.
I’m running as much as I can. Run Rabbit Run 50 is coming up quick. Last year I dropped at Dumont Aid Station (2). This year I really want to finish. I have a plan. I’m going to run a minimum of 2 miles every day until close to the race. On top of that I’m going to run as much trail as I possibly can. I am going to do a long run each weekend that will be done by time on my feet. I don’t care how far I go or how fast I go or if I run or walk- I just have to keep going. This weekend I’m going to shoot for 4 hours. I’ll also throw in some hill repeats on trail on Sundays. I’ve already done more than I did to prepare for Run Rabbit last year (clearly a couple of 10K runs in triathlons were not enough…) so I think with this regime I should be able to muscle my way through the race. I want that finish line!!
I signed up for the GOATz 50K. The GOATz (irunwithgoats.com) host a 50K at lake cunningham. This will be the second year for the race. I was out of town for the race last year so didn’t get to experience it. This year, I’m in and I’m running. Yes, sir.
Whew. Ok, I’m sure there are some things that I’ve missed in there, but I think I got the highlights.
Here’s what I’ve done so far this week:
Sunday: 6.5 miles on trail at Cunningham. Soccer game.
Monday: Run 1 mile, core work on TRX, run 1 mile. Spin class + core. Softball game.
Tuesday: Spin class. Swim 3000 yards. (plan to trail run after work).