Saturday, July 31, 2010

July Totals

Wow! It was a big month! July was pretty much eat, swim, bike, run, sleep with little else. I tried my best to get to every workout and I think I only missed one key one: a 6-1/2 hour bike ride that I was just too tired to even attempt. I'm getting more anxious and scared as the race comes closer and closer, but with the major mileage I put in this month, I'm also feeling a lot more comfortable about the race.

Swim = 25,250 meters (That's 15.78 miles!!!!)

Bike = 397.77 miles (And my very first flat tire!)

Run = 92.49 miles (Finally, marathon training numbers!)

One big week to go and then it's taper time. Oh. My. Stars.

Friday, July 30, 2010

I've Flipped my Lid

I don't know if it's the heat or how deep I am in my training, but I have lost my patience with the gym. I belong to Lifetime Fitness and it's the quintessential gym. You've got your meatheads, you've got your fashionistas who care more about how they look than getting in a workout, and sprinkled in there you've got people who are there to really exercise. What bothers me, though, is watching people workout and see everything they're doing wrong or not doing anything at all. It bothers me so badly to see people leaning on the treadmills and elliptical machines. Dude, you're not working anything!

For the last 9 months I have spent the majority of my time at the gym in the pool. I have seen all kinds of things happen in the pool and most of them do not involve actual swimming. Look, I have no problem if you're in the lap pool and you're doing something productive. If you are walking, walk and make it aerobic. If you are swimming, thank you! If you can share a lane, god bless you.

Yesterday two teenage boys were in the lane beside me. I should say, one teenage boy was in the lane and the other was on the deck. The one in the pool was diving to the bottom, a whopping 4 feet below, while the other one counted how long he could hold his breath. Turns out a whole 16 seconds. You're awesome! (sarcasm implied) When the other lane beside me, to my left, opened up, the yahoo on the deck jumped in that lane. So now the teenagers are in both lanes beside me. They're mirroring each other as they dive to the bottom. Me, I continue my workout. At one point, the kid on the right dives down, under the lane line, and runs into me as I swim. And it's hard enough that I cannot brush it off and continue as if nothing happens. I yell at both of them. I told them that these lanes were for swimming and if they wanted to horseplay (yeah I said that) they should be in the other pool. I continued with my set and when I came to the end of the wall they were waiting for me. Good grief. The one of my left, not the one who actually hit me, apologized for the other kid and tried to explain the situation and that they were lifeguard trained (yeah right). I told them I didn't care and that they needed to be in the other pool. I stopped listening and talking and finished my swim.

Here's the thing,'s gotten out of control in the lap pool and you're lifeguards and the swim director are too chicken to do anything about it. Here's what I suggest, with five lanes you designate one for walking (the one with the stairs), one for slow swimming, two for medium swimming, and one for fast swimming. People then have to seed themselves. And if you're walking in a lane designated for swimming and a swimmer needs that lane, you need to move over to the walking lane. I've seen this done at a community pool nearby and it's really not that hard!

Part of me is really ready for the Ironman to be over because I think I'm going to get involved with the master's swimming at the high school so I can swim with real swimmers.

Happy swimming!!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Product Review: Saucony Sports Bra

Disclaimer: Yes, I am sponsored by Saucony and receive a discount on their merchandise, however, I write reviews based on my experience and not on loyalty.

It's hot outside. Seriously hot. I don't ever remember a summer this hot. Then again, I've never trained for a race in the middle of the summer. I keep thinking it's not going to get any hotter, but then I remember how hot it was in Louisville during the 2008 IM and it very well could get hotter. So, I've been thinking about what I will wear during the race to minimize the hotness (enter joke here).

I've been thinking that during the run portion of the race I will wear my favorite run shorts and a sports bra. To stay true to my sponsors, it needs to be a Saucony sports bra so I purchased two of these: a black one and a pink one. The pink one is like Barbie Doll pink, but at least it matches my Trakkers hat.

I wore the black one during a short 45 minute run last week. I didn't use any skin protectant (ie, Body Glide) and didn't wear a shirt on top of it. Here's what I noticed about this sports bra: I think it might be made for more well-endowed girls than me. :) It's very full coverage: it's pretty high in the front and covers well in the back. Although I'm far from full-figured, I actually really like the coverage. There's no back fat and no side boob. By the end of the run I did notice a little bit of rubbing in the armpit area.

I wore the pink one on my long 2 hour 45 minute run last Friday. It was a scorcher last Friday (hottest day of the summer) so I suited up in what would be my trail run for Ironman. I wore Body Glide in the armpits and underarm area, under the bust line and a little at the top of the sports bra. By the end of mile 1 I was already drenched in sweat. This was a good day to test this out.

Overall, I really liked the sports bra and think it will work for Ironman. I like how the back and the front have the Saucony logo which is reflective which will work great if I wind up finishing in the dark. The pink one matches my Trakkers hat and will be easy to spot for my family. The only thing I noticed was a little chafing in an unexpected area. You see, these bras have an inner lining that protects the essentials. :) My Trakkers uniform has the same protectors. These are great, however, after 18 of the sweatiest miles ever, that inner lining chafed me on my chest. So, next time I run in it I will have to lube up there too.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Countdown

I have to admit, I didn't think training for Ironman would be a huge stretch from training for a marathon. I was wrong. REALLY. WRONG. It is way, way much more training and much, much harder mentally, physically, and emotionally to deal with. This week was my second-to-last big week before the race (YIKES!!!). This week I biked 150 miles, ran 31 miles, and swam nearly 5 miles. I have had super-highs, and the lowest of lows. I rode my first century and changed my first flat tire. I've shed tears of exhaustion, tears of happiness, and tears of nervousness. I can't believe it's all coming to an end and yet it seems there is so much more training I have and need to do. My dreams are colliding with reality. In five weeks I'll toe that line and find out what I'm made of. In five weeks I will become an Ironman.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Thursday Thoughts

This summer one of my shows of obsession is Man vs. Food. The host Adam Richman travels to different cities and samples some of the best food joints and takes on a food "challenge" usually ranging from very large portions (last week it was over 9 pounds of food in 40 minutes) or something insane like hot, hot, hot wings. I was lucky enough to catch the one in Columbus in rerun and was surprised that I had been to two of the three restaurants.

So, what's the best restaurant in your town and what is the best thing to eat there?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

My Destiny

Between photo boothing and the weather my workout schedule has gotten a little off. I was supposed to do a 6-1/2 ride followed by a 45 minute run over the weekend, but I just couldn't get it done. So, I had planned on doing it on Monday and pushing things back and shuffle things around for the next week. But looming in the next week was a 7-1/2 hour ride shooting for 112-120 miles. Early into the ride I decided I was just going to give the full thing a-go.

I had decided since I was doing the ride by myself that I'd ride to my sister's house and back twice and then throw in a little extra at the end of the ride. This way I was close to home in case something happened and also to make it easier to refill the bike with nutrition. The first trip out to my sister's house was interrupted with a short jaunt to my parents' to empty my bladder. I was seven miles into the was going to be one of those days. :) But, this added a few miles so I decided to keep the trek to my parents' house on the agenda for both ways. This would mean that finishing two loops would come up to 94 miles. The first 47 were pretty uneventful. I found some roads out by my sister's house were in the process of being chip sealed (gravel and then asphalt--yeah, she lives in the country) so I decided not to take those roads a second time.

The second time I got to my sister's house (around 70 miles) I was starting to feel bad. My shoulders were super-sore, my knees were achy, I was tired of being on my bike. I had a hard time taking a bathroom break and wanting to get started again. If she didn't have a million kids around, I might have asked her for a ride home. The workout description said "don't quit," so I wasn't going to. Around 77 miles I was starting to lose it mentally. The wind was in my face and I realized I still had somewhere between 35 and 40 miles left for this ride. That's still a lot more miles! Eighty miles into it, I was arguing with myself. Out loud. "Come on, Meredith. You're the strongest person I know mentally." "No, I'm not." "You can do this." "No I can't!" By the time I made it back to the house at 94 miles, I was toast.

I called Dave and he gave me a little pep talk. He told me to just take the next 18 miles in smaller steps: get to the end of the street, make it into New Albany, try to ride out to Abercrombie. Okay, I could do that. I started out again and I was actually feeling better. My knees and shoulders weren't hurting as much and I felt like I had a second wind. Yes, I could do this.

And then I got to thinking. Last night I was watching Holly's World. Shut up! You know you watch it too! She said in the episode that having big boobs was her destiny. He he he! But in all seriousness it got me thinking. Becoming an Ironman is my destiny. I have wanted to achieve this goal for as long as I can remember. When I was little I used to watch the Hawaii Ironman, sobbing, telling my dad that I was going to do that some day. It's been the number one goal on my Life List since it existed. This is my destiny.

At 100 miles I cheered out loud. Around 104 miles I was brought back down to reality. Something was squishy, and it happened to be my back tire. Crap! I've never had a flat tire. EVER! So I found some shade and called Dave. He talked me through changing it while on the phone. And I totally did it by myself. I wish I had pictures to prove it. Sure it might have taken me a half hour, but I had that back tire on in no time. :) I was riding again and I was going to finish this b!tch! Except a few miles later I was squishy again. Gosh darn it! I must have done something wrong. I had one more CO2 cartridge but not another tube. At 107.5 miles, I was done. I had to call Dave to come pick me up.

As it turns out, I didn't do anything wrong. There was a stone stuck in the tire that had punctured both my tubes. I probably got it at that newly chip sealed road 80 miles prior and it just took that long to actually puncture the tire. So, now I know how to change a tire and I know that I can do it successfully, albeit slowly.

Although I didn't get the full 112 miles in, I know I can finish the ride. I had some dark miles late in the ride, but from everyone I've heard from that's pretty common. One more big ride left before the big day....

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Shadow Dancing

I kid you not...this is what I saw in the pool this weekend:

Yes, there were two men, facing each other, in TWO LANES, "shadow dancing". Or at least, that's what I like to call it. And they were making aerobic faces at each other. You know what I'm talking about..."oooohhh", "aaahhhh." The best part was the lifeguard came over and told them they had to stop. He he he!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Foto Friday

This is a bike heavy week for me. And a run heavy week. And a swim heavy week. Oh yeah, we're only a few weeks from Ironman. :) Yesterday's ride was not designed to be difficult but I was suffering through it nonetheless. My legs were tired and I had trouble getting my RPMs up. So I would switch gears to get into the correct RPM and then my heart rate would drop. The wind was in my face which made me going like 14 mph in zone 2. I was really suffering. Within a few miles from home I dropped my chain and struggled to get it back on. Dave can do his, somehow, without even touching it. Me, I'm a grease monster:

As adventurous as my ride was, though, it was nothing compared to Dave's. We rode together for a majority of the ride, but his was an hour longer so he turned off at one point. When I got home and showered I noticed a missed call from Dave. I called him back and he answered with this..."Don't worry. I'm okay." YIKES! Turns out he was 100 feet away when a car swerved to avoid a dog, hit the ditch and flipped the car over. RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIM!!! He said the girl jumped out of the car about as quickly as he could get to the accident. She was fine with only a few minor scratches. The dog was fine too, I guess. Dave said he never saw a dog. He waited around for the police and ambulance to show up and had to give a report. Scary stuff!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thursday Thoughts

With only a few weeks left until the big race, I've started to notice a theme in questioning...

"What are you going to do after Ironman?"

I have no freakin' idea! I do have one race on the schedule in October, but after that __________ (crickets chirping). I'm a little worried about post-race depression, to be honest. I've run Boston. I'll have completed an Ironman. Really, what is there left to do? How can anything top those?

So, what should I do after Ironman?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Product Review: FuelBelt FuelBox

The bike rides are getting longer which means it's getting more and more difficult to carry everything that is needed--gels, salt tabs, phone, identification, kitchen sink, etc. I used to use a Bento Box (pictured below), but I hated that thing because it always folded to one side and scraped up my legs. (My bike fit is really tight and my knees nearly touch the elbow pads of my aero bars.)

Dave's Bento Box on Charlie Brown.

Recently I purchased a FuelBelt FuelBox (large) to try out and see if it was any better than my Bento Box.

Hello beautiful bike.

I used it on my long ride and put my EFS gel flash, a little tube of sunscreen, chapstick, salt tabs, and driver's license. On this ride I liked the new fuel box. It held all my stuff. It didn't chafe my legs. I liked the zipper. And because it has an inner plastic liner, it was easy to clean up from all the goopy gel.

But then I used it on a ride on Tuesday and that day I did not like it so much. Tuesday I was carrying three gels, a key, a driver's license, and my iPhone. It all came down to the phone. My tiny, tiny phone, I guess, weighs too much and is a little too wide. Because it was on it's side and leaning one direction that meant that the whole fuel box leaned in one direction. And therefore chafed my knee. Halfway through the ride I got fed up and took my phone and jammed it as best I could to lay flat on the bottom of the box. It didn't quite fit, but the box was no longer leaning to one side. In addition, I tightened up the velcro pieces around the handlebars.

Overall, I like the FuelBox a lot better than the Bento Box. My only wish for something they could change is I'd like to see one with a zipper going the other direction. For me, I'd rather have the box sit at the back of my top tube along the seat post. But because the zipper goes the wrong direction I think it would be hard to open and close.

The Saucony sports bra review has been delayed as the size I got was just a little too small (hard to believe, eh?). So I sent it back and ordered a size bigger. Hopefully there will be a review next week.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Full Moon (NSFW)


The long bike ride for the weekend was six hours. I was so ready for this ride. And I so rocked this ride.

We rode from our house and did our hour long warm up. We then stopped at my parents' house and dropped off all our extra stuff we were carrying (sunscreen, nutrition, etc.). We would be using their house as our base camp, if you will. We then headed off on our 20 mile interval with 5 miles of recovery. The first one was pretty uneventful. We tried to hit our heart rate zones, did our climbs in the saddle, and stuck to a reasonable pace. We returned to my parents' house, took a bathroom break, resprayed the sunscreen, and refueled. Then it was out again. For me, this was the darkest part of the ride. I didn't feel bad, necessarily, but I knew we were not halfway through and there was still a long way to go. I was nutritioning (yes it's a word) the hell out of this ride, though, and continued throughout. One bottle of Gatorade per hour, gel every 40 minutes, salt tabs on the hour, and water when I needed it. My stomach was feeling good and I was feeling well hydrated.

The next time we returned to my parents house something happened. I unclipped my right foot, the natural one for me, and the bike leaned left. I tried to catch myself against the garage door as I was close enough, but I couldn't quite handle it. Now, though, I was too close to the garage and I was worried I was going to hit it on the way down. So I kinda scooched closer to the bike. This was a mistake. The bike seat got me HARD in the butt and my gears dug into my right leg. I crashed onto my left side. Dave couldn't get close enough to help me. This is the fourth time I've crashed like this in the last year and it was the one that hurt the most. I got up, close to tears, and walked it off. While we restocked our bikes, I put a small ice pack on the butt and kept on moving. We continued with our ride.

Despite the crash I had a great ride. We finished off 90 miles just over 6 hours. I was really tempted to turn the bike around and continue on for another ten miles and finish my first century. There was running to do, though, and I couldn't skip another run off the bike.

Here's the good stuff. That crash? Well, it was awesome. Checking a little later in the day, Dave discovered my butt was bruising and quickly. I iced it that evening and slept very uncomfortably. The next day it was starting to look and feel bad. Warning, full moon ahead:

One day after the crash.

Two days after the crash and the bruise is now very colorful and growing (although feeling a lot better):

I can't believe I just showed you all pictures of my butt!!!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Chasing Bourbon

They suckered me in again.

I have done Reach the Beach five times: 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008. (I can't find a race report for 2007). Last year the team took a year off as babies were born, people moved, lives changed, etc. I swore I would not do another relay race as the last one just about broke me.

For 2010 the gang decided to try a different type of relay race, The Bourbon Chase. Initially I threw my hat in the ring, but decided to back out because of a lot of reasons: there was a huge waitlist and it was time to give someone else an opportunity; I really wanted (and still want to) qualify for the Halfmax Championships and it was only two weeks before; I am not in fast running shape as I've been training for Ironman exclusively; I had a falling out with a friend on the team; I have a wedding scheduled that weekend....excuses, excuses, excuses. Dave and my dad had already paid their deposits but I told our team captain I didn't want to do it.

Fast forward SEVERAL months and I'm having dinner with my parents last week. Dad mentioned the relay teams still needed another person. Really? What about the waitlist? Gone. Crap! Being that I haven't qualified for Halfmax and now have two weddings that weekend, that excuse is gone. There are still going to be people on the team slower than me. Excuse gone. Falling out with the friend...well, we'll deal with that later. And then the wedding. What to do about the wedding? I only had one scheduled that weekend so I started checking with my employees and they covered it. Excuse gone.

And now, I'm on the relay team again. I'm serious this time. This is my LAST TIME!!!!

Friday, July 09, 2010

Foto Friday

Because I love this photo so much. This is of my dad after he fell when we were running together in the winter. I have tried to find the blog post that goes with this, but I can't seem to find it. I'm going to use this as my dad's ringtone picture on my iPhone. :)

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Thursday Thoughts

Dave and I received a class action lawsuit the other day for something and I noted to him how often I get noticed about class action lawsuits for my VW Beetle. This was my first new car I bought myself after college. I thought I would love that thing. I absolutely HATED IT!!! I had problem after problem, got ridiculed by the maintenance department at the dealership, and even got hung-up on by a manager. I turned that sucker in as soon as my lease was up. I will NEVER buy another Volkswagen and I will NEVER shop at Hatfield again.

That being said, Dave and I bought ourselves two new cars following the VW--a 2004 Toyota Prius and a 2004 Honda Element. These cars are AWESOME!
My Stars! Look how skinny Dave was back in the day!

In the 6 and 5 years we've owned the cars, respectively, we've only had one emergency service on the Prius. We have both cars payed off. We use the Element for carrying the photo booths and our bikes. It's like the best truck ever. I hope these cars last FOREVER!!!

So, if you were buying a new car right now, what would you buy and why?

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

In Memoriam

In loving memory of my dear
iPod who passed away July 5th, 2010.
Thou art gone, dear iPod,
Gone beyond the world of excessive running and riding,
But the memory of you will ever linger
Through the passing years.

Lovingly, Meredith

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

A Short Review

Fashion is not really my thing. I remember when I was in my high school my sister, the pretty one, would be all like, "why can't you wear anything besides a t-shirt and jeans." Yep that's just me, a t-shirt and jeans girl. Nothing has really changed as I've gotten older and probably has gotten a bit worse this year with Ironman training. I swear I am living in workout clothes and IT AIN'T PRETTY!!! When I workout, I'm lucky if I come close to matching. I usually don't put much thought into my gear. I just want it to fit and not chafe.

Alright I'm going to preface this review. Yes, I receive a discount from Saucony because they are one of my sponsors. No, I would not give a good review if I did not believe in the product. Okay, here we go...

Earlier this summer I bought a pair of shorts from Saucony because I needed a pair to compliment the rest of the gear I've received from Saucony and Trakkers. I didn't put a lot of thought into what pair I wanted. I just wasn't going to spend a lot of money and I wanted them to be black to match the rest of my gear. So I ordered this pair. I was a little nervous about them being big and bulky because I ordered a size bigger than the rest of my gear, but the rest of my gear is a little snug. They arrived and the first run I put them through was in the rain. You never know what chafing and bunching will occur in the rain. And you know what, I loved these shorts in the rain. They were light. They didn't chafe. I barely noticed they were there.

Last week I was running on the trails wearing a pair of Nike shorts that I've run in a million times. But it was the first time I noticed how bunched up they get in my hoochie coochie and how scratchy they were. When I planned my long run this week, I made sure my Saucony running shorts were clean. Despite everything else falling apart on my run, the shorts were perfect.

I've been thinking a lot about what I will wear in Ironman. Will I wear my biking shorts underneath my swimming speed suit? (Probably, I'm not very open about my naked self in the changing tent.) Will I change into my tri shorts for the marathon? Do I want to wear running shorts instead of tri shorts for the marathon? Is it going to be too hot to wear the tri top on the run? All I know right now is that I'm leaning towards changing into these new running shorts for the run. They are perfect for a marathon run.

I just purchased a sports bra from Saucony. Maybe another good review coming?

Monday, July 05, 2010

So Hot It Melts Your Popsicle

Look, I'm no dummy. Ironman is going to be hard. And most likely HOT! Three of the four times Ironman Louisville has happened has been HOT! Like, melt your face off, hot. When I went to watch it two years ago it was 97 degrees. This summer is turning out to be a scorcher. Dave and I had a conversation at dinner the other night. I said I didn't remember ever training in weather this hot. He reminded me that I've never run a marathon that was prior to October so I would only be starting my training now.

Today was a long run -- 2-1/2 hours. I got started a little later than I wanted, but getting up early is not so easy when you work at a wedding the night before and don't get home until 11:00 or after. This run was designed to be a trial run for Ironman. I was supposed to realistically run at Iron pace. In my head, I'm thinking....this is easy! Iron pace is nearly one minute slower than marathon pace. Sure easy. :)

I started off with an hour warm up. I was barely 10 minutes in and it was already hot. Sweat was starting to roll off my nose and my skin was starting to feel like my clothing was melting into it. Maybe 2 miles into the run I realize I didn't bring any salt tabs. No biggie. I've done years of marathon training without salt. Not even five miles into it I was halfway through my water. It was going to be a long day.

After an hour I got to do 45 minutes at Ironman pace. I had set my Garmin between 8:30s and 9:00s hoping to stay close to 9:00s. This was the best part of the workout for me. I didn't have to worry about heart rate and could just run. It was very hot, but there was a bit of a breeze in my face and I was going downhill. I arrived at my car 10 miles into the run and restocked the water, grabbed another gel and headed out to finish up the last hour plus of the run.

The next phase of the run was to go faster than race pace. I thought, sure this will be easy. I only need to go under 8:45s. I was just fried, though, and things were starting to unravel. I couldn't believe how HOT I was. I was playing mind games with myself: just run to the wooden part of the path, make it to the underpass, let's make it 100 steps and then you get a break. My Garmin wouldn't stop beeping at me. I was literally yelling at it to SHUT UP!!! I was drinking my water every 2-1/2 minutes. I would stop every time I could find shade. My legs and head were saying no more. But my heart told me to keep going. I was worried I was ruining my insides. Seriously, I was a mess.

With 29 minutes left in the run I found myself sitting on the ground. I don't know how I got there. I don't know how long I stayed there. Reality hit me. I always wondered how people were passed out and looked like hell on the side of the road in races. And here I was sitting on the path less than 3 miles from my house. I picked myself up and ran some more. I stopped again not even five minutes later and a couple on bikes passed me. They didn't say anything to me, but I must have looked bad to them because I saw them again a few minutes later. They were waiting on me to make sure I was okay. Man, I must be looking bad.

Finally I made it to the cool down and I shuffled back to the car. I ran into Grace, who I've run many marathons with and she was just heading out on her run. I told her to be careful. It was HOT! I finished my run, finally: 15.85 miles in 2-1/2 hours. It wasn't pretty, it wasn't fast, but it was done.

I'm starting to learn that Ironman training is a lot like therapy. Yep, I'm seen a head shrinker. And I hated it. They cut you down and make you feel like crap and then build you back up to a new person. Ironman training is the same way. You have to be broken mentally and physically to learn how to deal with all situations on race day. This run really shook me, but Coach thinks it was a positive experience. All I know is, I think there's only one long run left....

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Independence Triathlon 2010--Spectator Report

A few weeks ago, Dave signed up for a sprint triathlon on July 4th that was really close to our house and would be on roads we normally ride. Coach asked if I wanted to sign up. I said no because (a) we had a wedding the night before and we would be getting home until after midnight and (b) what purpose would a sprint triathlon do me when I'm training for Ironman. As time approached, however, I really wanted to do this race. I wanted to use it as my bike test. Plus it had sweet age group awards and I really felt like I had a chance to place in my age group. I went to sign up and wouldn't you know that bugger was sold out?! Dang it! So, I went to the race as a supportive wife.

This race was a little different in that it was a swim in the pool, serpentine style. The athletes seeded themselves based on their expected 300 yard time and then jumped in every few seconds and swam up and back in the same lane before switching lanes. Mostly this style works except those people who don't seed very well or who can't hug the lane line so others can pass. Dave seeded himself well and swam mostly by himself until at least half way in the swim. Check out this baby I created...

From the swim there was a LONG run to transition over grass, rocks, etc. Dave had stashed his shoes by the pool and put them on to run to transition. Smart man I married. :) I didn't make it over to transition to see him leave onto the bike, but from his race report it seems like he had really fast transitions.

The bike was a 12 mile loop starting and ending on the gravel driveway of the park. Yikes! The best part was, though, all 12 of those miles Dave and I ride on almost a weekly basis. My parents live right on this race course and we do many of our rides starting from their house. Dave knew these roads like the back of his hand and it showed. He rocked the bike! Myself, I hung out and met a woman named Meg. She was cheering on her friend who was doing her first triathlon. Rock on, sister! It was great to meet you.

Dave made it back to transition so quickly I almost missed him. His transition was 28 seconds! Is he a freakin' pro?! He was out on that run course and looking good.

It was starting to get hot and Dave doesn't do very well in the heat. He was having such a great race and I was just hoping he could finish it strong. Before I knew it, he was back and dashing to the finish line. He was hoping to place in his age group. He's not quite there yet, but he did have the best race he's ever had and finished really fast for a dude training for iron-distance.

Watching the race unfold, I totally could have rocked this race. My friend, Colleen, finished second in our age group and third overall. I think I would have been right there with her. I think I would have had a little faster swim and run, but she would have beaten me on the bike. We could have come in hand-in-hand. Ahhh! He he he! Just kidding!

We didn't stick around very long because it was getting HOT and we had a wedding later in the day we needed to prepare for. Too bad. I guess we missed meeting Tri Diesel. I guess he saw us before the race but didn't want to interrupt our pre-race rituals. Dude, we have no rituals, plus I wasn't even racing. Next time say hi!!! We'll see you at the next race.

Which is in 7 weeks if you're counting!!!!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Bike Test

Every few weeks/months, Coach likes to do "tests" to see where my fitness currently falls and if my heart rate zones have changed. Unlike Dave, it seems I have somehow escaped doing many of these tests. In fact, the last time I had a bike test was two years ago, July 2008. At that time I didn't bike AT ALL!!! Doing that bike test was pure torture. I thought I was going to die. Today I had just my second bike test on the schedule and I was determined to do well at it. After a long warmup, it was go time. I started off conservatively keeping my cadence high and building speed in five minute intervals. I kept a sticker over my bike computer so as not to see how good or poorly I was doing. Every once in a while I would look at my heart rate just to see where I was at and was really surprised to see how low it was. Was I not working hard enough? Was I worn out and the heart rate was not going to climb at all?

After 20 minutes I had gone just 5.63 miles with an average pace of 16.8 mph and a maximum pace of 21.9 mph. Did I mention this was on the trainer? Yeah, so the speeds were slower than if it had been outside. My heart rate maxed at 178 and recovered at 137.

So what does all this mean? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!! Eight months focusing on cycling and my heart rate zones are staying exactly the same. What?! I guess this boils down to my aerobic fitness being spot on. I haven't been working on speed. My goal for Ironman is to ride in zone 2 the entire ride. The paces I have planned fall into zone 2.

I hope it's another two years before my next bike test.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Foto Friday

Dave and I had the opportunity to bring our photo booths to Red, White, and Boom and sell sessions inside the booth to families at the KidsLinked Children's Park. Was it successful? We're not sure. But, it was an opportunity to get our name out there and we had fantastic seats for the fireworks display.

Could we look a little more haggard? At least the sunset behind us is pretty.

Ooohhh!!! Aaaahhhh!!!

I hope all of you have a safe and fantastic holiday weekend. Me, I'll be working all weekend. :)

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Thursday Thoughts

This Thursday Thoughts is brought to you, in part, by my mom. Yes, she reads my blog. :)

My dad has run the Boston Marathon several times but not since The Boston Athletic Association made some changes like splitting the start in two, moving the start time to 10:00am, and doing away with the Freedom Run. He thinks it's a travesty. I have run Boston in both eras and don't really think anything of the changes. I kind of like the two stage start. For me it has allowed me to run in the front corral several times. And I kind of like the 10:00am start. You don't have to sit around for hours and your nutrition is more like a "normal" marathon. Dad has said that if he ever qualifies he's not sure he'd run it again. He likes tradition.

Last night at dinner mom mentioned that one of the neighboring communities has decided to do away with it's Fourth of July fireworks display after this year. Considering I'm working this year and don't really enjoy fireworks, this doesn't really bother me. She thinks it's awful.

So, what traditions have gone away that you wish hadn't?