Sunday, January 31, 2010

a little less grey

I have decided to track my training miles this year for the first time. I'm just using a calendar program on my computer. Nothing fancy, but it easily keeps an accurate record for me to look back at. Today, as I was tallying up my January totals, Matt showed me how to assign a color to each activity to make it easy to read on the calendar. Cool! So of course I spent entirely too much time going back thru January to update my colors! (yes, I'm a nerd that big surprise.) I assigned blue to swim (duh), orange to bike (love orange), green to run (green=outside), red to inten-sati (the color of my face at the end of class), etc. I assigned grey to my days off or missed days because it's a blah/nothing color. I feel good about January. I'm gradually getting back into a good routine. But after looking at the whole month on the page, I decided that my goal for February is to have a few less grey days.

January totals look like this:
Swim= 17miles

Bike= 102miles
Inten-Sati= 4x

Kickboxing= 3x
Yoga= 2x
Strength training= 1x

Just for fun I looked up my USAT ranking from 2009. Not sure that it means much to me. It is what it is. I was #1126 out of a total of 1994 in my age group.

Matt's January workouts and Totals

Jan 1st. 5.5 miles on the original hills loop.
Jan 2nd. 2750m Muscle Builder workout from the book.
Jan 3rd. 2650m workout from the book. 50m short ran out of time.
Jan 4th Yoga
Jan 5th Hockey and Beer
Jan 6th Masters 2200m
Jan 7th 6.25 miles Ballpark loop
Jan 8th Day off
Jan 9th 3200m Force workout from the book.
9 miles on the bike trainer
Jan 10th. 2700m at the pool. Maija’s workout + pushups abs and tricep press
11 miles on the bike trainer
Jan 11th Yoga was canceled. Day off
Jan 12th Bike 9 miles in the morning. Run 4 miles (petsmart loop) 2 easy, 2 hard.
Jan 13th Master Swimming 2750m
Jan 14th 16.5 mile bike in the AM. 6.25 mile run 8:20 avg pace after work.
Jan 15th Day off
Jan 16th 9 miles big hill loop modified to remove big downhills. Then went directly to the pool. 3500m much of that was pull.
Jan 17th 3200m from the book. 20 mile bike Spinervals ~1:15:00
Jan 18th Yoga in the evening
Jan 19th 5 mile ballpark run. New Sole inserts. Legs felt dead. Managed 8:16 avg
Jan 20th Missed Swim had to move stuff for contractor
Jan 21st. Morning swim 2500m, Work on bike shoe adjustment 30 min.
Jan 22nd After work Train Delay kept us from swimming. Ended up in Princeton
Jan 23rd Drive to Fredonia
Jan 24th. Run 4 miles w/ Jim in Warren. Swim 1700m
Jan 25th Swim 2300m Drive back to NJ
Jan 26th Bike 18 miles on trainer. Right shoe cleat still not set properly…
Jan 27th masters swimming 2700m
Jan 28th 17 miles bike trainer w/ Genine. I think I finally got the right cleat set.
Jan 29th Movie Night: Gran Torino
Jan 30th Bike 24 miles on trainer. Swim 3050m
Jan 31st Run 5 miles. 5 loops of the hill + a bit. My lungs fogged over once I stopped running. Hate that. Bike 18 miles on the trainer. Right Cleat still doesn’t feel right.

Totals to Jan 31th
Swim Total: 35,200m or 21.87 miles
Bike Total: 122.5 miles
Run Total: 45 miles
Yoga: 2

Thursday, January 28, 2010

USAT Rankings

Obviously I'm not checking to see if I've attained Elite Status. I was curious to see how they measured my improvement.
These are the unofficial results. The pros are still mixed in with the age groupers so the overall rank is going to change. I don't think that my "points" are going to change though.
2008 I had a score of 70.644.
2009 I had a score of 76.63.
Here is the breakdown of my 4 scored races.

I found it interesting that I ranked so similarly at both Mooseman and the Washington DC race. I would have guessed I would have ranked lower at Mooseman.
Yes, I would have liked to known what my Timberman rank would have been without the 6 minute flat repair.

Here is the link to see how they calculate the rank.
Here is the link to the 2009 Unofficial rankings.

News from WV

I purchased lots of stuff. Timing belt, accessory belts, water pump, thermostat, ignition coils, and a gallon of radiator fluid for a 1999 Toyota Van (boy, I wish it had been recalled).

I did get Perfect Pushup stands. I should be on week 4 of 100 pushups, but car work in the cold derailed me. Still on week 3 this week. Love the stands, easier on wrists.

Bike trainer is my need/want. Haven't plunged due to above items, time more than money. Of course maybe I can upgrade the trainer with the "Dear, look how much I saved doing the car work myself" arguement. Doesn't usually work, even though I try it alot. I alos wished I had paid the extra for someone else to do it, I was bushed after that job.

I did go cross country skiing with the kids a week ago Saturday. Had a great day. Kids loved it. It made up for all that shoveling.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Where is the update Craig?

I keep waiting to hear about an equipment purchase Craig. What's the news from WV?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Jim's swim watch

I went to the Warren Y on Monday with Jim's new swim watch. The swimovate, pool-mate swim computer. We had run on Sunday and he was curious to see what the results of the watch would be when I swim. So I had picked out a workout that I thought would be interesting to see the results.
warmup 300m, then paused the watch for 8x75 kick, drill, swim, watch back on for 300m.
4x50 race pace 15 second rest.
600m swim 30 sec rest
4x100 race pace 15 second rest.
Then I got booted out of the pool the next class was starting.
So I went to the locker room. Got the directions out for the watch to see how it did. I did see that it accurately counted the number of laps. Then when I tried to get other information, I ended up deleting the workout.... Maybe I really didn't get the menu structure. If not, it seems to me the design of the software needs to be modified a bit. First off I don't think the Erase workout should be the first menu that shows up when you hit the mode button. Second, how about an "are you sure you want to delete your workout" warning. I may be being too quick to judge here. I'm guessing once you know how to use it, you wouldn't make this mistake.
It's really too bad. I should have stuck with my original plan, which was: Give the watch to Jim with the workout saved and let him tell me the other details. Sorry Jim. It did count the laps perfectly. It also seemed to be doing a good job with stroke count, which is what I was so curious to look at... :-/

Friday, January 22, 2010

Marathon Results

I finished! I ended up running a 4:27:52 to finish 118th of 186. Felt much better than the results, but I was really happy to finish and feel pretty decent.

It did stay dry for the first half of the race and then like a switch, rained almost the entire last 13.1 miles. I wanted to changed to a lighter shirt at the halfway point and was unable. About 2 miles later I was very thankful I hadn't but also wish I had a jacket. I ran 1:52 for the first half marathon and shortly thereafter began my mental struggles. As a result, I had several thoughts of quittting ( mostly fears from the last marathon re-surfacing). Then I'd convince myslef I was in good shape and I'd run 8:30 for a mile. I ran the 19th mile in 8:15 and felt great physically. But, I would still have to alternate running/walking the rest of the way in because of the head games I was playing.

So, ultimately I'm very happy to have made this step and did it while feeling pretty good. I ran 2 miles 2 days later and felt a little heavy but ran about 8:30 per mile. This made my 17th completed marathon in 13 states!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Bike Gear

Picked up my new bike shoes on Saturday. 2009 Specialized Trivents size 44. I didn't order from this place. I bought them at Wheel Life Cycle on US 206. They are light. The person that sold them to me said when he took the box off the shelf, he actually looked inside to make sure there were 2 shoes in the box. :-)
I was able to remove the old pedals easily enough. Saved me from buying a pedal wrench. I now have the Shimano PD 6700 Ultegra SPD-SL pedals and SM-SH11 Clips. I've got to mess with the clip placement on the shoe. I did 20 miles on them last night and my right ankle wasn't very happy about it. I'll make sure I spend some time adjusting before starting another training ride.

It was a good weekend of workouts. 6700m swimming. 9 miles of hill running. 20 miles on the bike trainer.
Looking at my swimming progress, basically I'm finally going the same speed with or without my pull buoy. Which means the next step seems clear to me. I need to work on creating a propulsive kick. I'll probably go back and get a few lessons from Coach Q and see what he thinks.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Off Topic.

I’ve been reading Steven Erikson’s “The Malazan Book of the Fallen” Series. It’s definitely Epic Fantasy. I believe it’s going to be a 10 book series each being around 800 pages.
As I read through the second book I dog-eared pages when I came across something worth revisiting. I’m not sure how well they will read out of context but here they are.

“Strange how the mind’s eye can travel so far and so fast, yet return in an instant.
With that eye you might explore the entire world. With that eye you might escape it.”

Regarding your personal memories
“You dream that with memories will come knowledge, and from knowledge, understanding. But for every answer you find a thousand new questions arise. All that we were has led us to where we are, but tells us little of where we’re going. Memories are a weight you can never shrug off.”

Talking about the comfort of familiarity and reluctance to change.
“The tracks we have walked in for so long become our lives, in themselves a prison.”

Talking about your place in the universe.
“We are lone souls. It pays to know humility, lest the delusion of control, of mastery overwhelms. And indeed, we seem a species prone to that delusion, again and ever again…”

There you have it. I've really enjoyed the first two books. I'm glad I have 8 more ahead of me. It may take me through all of 2010.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Run Course

If I run from my house, I really only run variations in distance on the same 3.1 mile out and back. I'm sure many people would find running the same road over and over incredibly boring. Yes, it can be but has been a very safe run route for me. I thought tonight was going to be the end of that streak. About a half mile from the house, a dog started barking and running right for me. It was dark and I couldn't see the dog very well. The owner was yelling to me "she doesn't bite!!" It was a sizable dog headed my way. I decide I'd better stop running and get ready to tell the dog to "go home!". I wonder if I would have had the nerve to do that had it been light out and had seen that it was a pit bull headed my way. Fortunately the dog stopped in it's tracks when I shouted "go home" at it. The owner grabbed the dog and I headed off. I think the owner lucked out, if I had reacted differently towards the dog, that could have been a bad situation. I think Craig wrote on this blog about the yelling "go home" at the dog trick. Thanks for that Craig.
Oddly enough 2 miles later. I'm running across the vacant ballpark parking lot and a fox goes running along "beside me" 30-40 yards away.
Then another mile later I just about jumped out of my shoes when I hear an explosion behind me. I was about 300 or so yards away from Interstate 287's overpass when a tire blew out on a tractor trailer. I wish I had my software setup to download my HR data from my watch. I'm sure you'd be able to spot exactly when it happened.
Other than the bit of adventure on what is typically my boring run course, it was a great night for a run. It was 28 degrees with zero wind.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Haven't had much time

Here is what's been going on.

Jan 1st. 5.5 miles on the original hills loop. 5 loops was 1 too many.

Jan 2nd. 2750m Muscle Builder workout from the book.

Jan 3rd. 2650m workout from the book. 50m short ran out of time.

Jan 4th Yoga

Jan 5th Hockey and Beer

Jan 6th Masters 2200m

Jan 7th 6.25 miles Ballpark loop nice easy run

Jan 8th Day off

Jan 9th 3200m Force workout from the book.

9 miles on the bike trainer. Wow my bike legs are gone.

Jan 10th. 2700m at the pool. Maija’s workout + pushups abs and tricep press

11 miles on the bike trainer

Jan 11th Yoga was canceled. Day off :-(

Jan 12th Bike 9 miles in the morning. Run 4 miles (petsmart loop) 2 easy, 2 fast.

Jan 13th Master Swimming 2750m. Last set was 5x100 20 sec rest. 1:39, 1:39, 1:38, 1:38, 1:37. I think that's a first for me, all 5 being under 1:40. I wasn't too far behind Bob. I think I may have benefited from a bit of his wake.

I'm really light on the run miles. Maybe it's good that the Half Marathon I wanted to do on the 24th is sold out.
I am doing better about waking up at 5AM for morning workouts. Also the eating plan is starting to feel like it's on track.

I need this house project to be done and out of the way. I think their job will be done in 4-5 weeks. Then it's up to us to paint and stain.
I'd like to plan some different fundraising events this year. I need to get to work on that soon. More about those ideas later.

Go Jim Go!

Countdown is on!

Well, three days until my marathon. I'm excited and nervous. The DNF in Delaware 1.5 years ago still leaves trepidation for this. I know I'm in shape for it, just bad memories at this distance.

Well, hopefully I'll post good news after Saturday. It is a small marathon, so I do not believe they have an athlete tracking available.

In separate news, ...I've been swimming. 700 meters yesterday which is good for me. I bought a new "swim watch" which I haven't received yet but might keep me excited enough to swim. It is the Swimovate Pool-mate. I hope it works like it says!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Anything is Possible

Rather than decide upon resolutions that most often end up being broken thus resulting in disappointment, I've decided to adopt this mode of thinking for 2010. After all, it's really true. I honestly believe that the only thing stopping us short of achieving our dreams is ourselves. If you want something...REALLY want something and pursue it with passion anything is possible. I mean who would have thought that I could ever swim a mile in a lake?! But I wanted to race Mooseman bad enough to overcome my fear of swimming and pain from running to make it across the finish line last June. So now I'm thinking to myself, "What are my dreams for 2010?"..."What do I REALLY want?"..."What is possible?"

Aside from the goals I have for home & work (which are many), I have a few racing goals that are running through my mind. The one race I know for certain, of course, is Mooseman. I am already registered. I need to look at my results from last year to see what I will set my goal times at. I'm looking forward to improved swim & run times for certain. Tango is also on the calendar, I'm just not sure what legs I will be doing. More to come on that.

Ok, if you are not already, now is a good time to sit down. I am about to make public my crazy, "out there" dream for 2010......... Timberman Half-Iron. What?!?! (I told you it was crazy!) I am confident that I can do the swim and the bike. Yes, I just stated that I believe I can swim 1.2 miles. That alone is amazing to me. I've already done the bike course with Matt last year and loved it (which is the catalyst behind this whole thought process for me). It all comes down to the run....hmmmm. I can say that I made significant improvements on my run throughout the season last year. But enough to complete 13 miles...after 56 miles on the bike? Can I train wisely enough over the next 8 months to build my distance without breaking my hips? Can this dream become a reality? I would like to think that I can. After all, anything is possible.....if I really want it. Right???

Friday, January 1, 2010

Pareto principle

Ah the new year. Time for goals and resolutions and reflecting on the year or decade past.
2009 was an enlightening year for me. I read some really good stuff which really helped me learn about myself. In some there were suggestions as to how to improve yourself. (can't say I was too successful at making those changes, ah well...)
Well I came across this article the other day. Jack of all trades. That is definitely where I live, so I found the article to be really interesting. Of course, I think part of my job requires me to do a ton of stuff well. I can't just do one thing perfectly and that's it. Anyhow, I was thinking about how this could apply to our training as well.
Give it a read. Let me know what you think.