Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Triathlon Training Week 2

Today was week 2 of the Great Beginner Triathlon training program.  I started the day off by meeting Elizabeth and Laurie at the Janesvillle Athletic Club at 5:45 for a swim.  This was Laurie's first swim, and she did great.  She reminded me a lot of myself when I first started swimming; the thought of "what am I doing?!" entered my head several times in my first few swims I'm sure.  I remember training for my first triathlon; I struggled through the swim, but one night it all clicked and I was able to swim the 18 laps at Marshall for the half mile. I enjoy seeing how far I've come, before I struggled to breathe and swim 25 yards, now I have no problem doing sets of 80 or 120 yards. 

After an eventful day of work pre-Holiday, I skipped my last stop to rush home, throw my bike rack on my car, change, grab my bike, and run out of the door.  I was very glad that I had already picked out what I intended to wear to tri class, otherwise I would have been more flustered and late to class!  At practice Kitty talked for a bit, but I was ready to get out there for a bike and run!  We did 2 sets of bike and run brick workouts totally about 3 miles, and then had a bike clinic.  Corey showed us how to change a flat tire, and then it was our turn.  I payed close attention as he was showing us what to do, but it turns out I was not very good at changing my tire!!  I felt like everything I was doing was incorrect and I struggled through.  I did manage to deflate my tire with no problem :)  After that I tried to put my tube in backwards and blow my tire up with the valve closed.  Someone should have been videoing me for comic relief.  Nonetheless, I did manage to change the tire, and if in dire need I bet I could do it again!  I took both the front and back tires off, I sure hope my bike functions alright the next time I go for a ride! 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Neighborhood Meander

Tonight I couldn't decide between a bike ride or run. I wanted to get a bike ride in, but I don't like to bike by myself, and it can be a chore to take the bike downstairs and get everything ready. I also had a pretty long day at work, and wanted to do some sweating, so I decided on a approximately 3 mile run.  I took my usual route to the trail, but then decided I wanted to go run through the neighborhoods along Milwaukee road.  The weather was great, and the houses were beautiful.  I ran up a street, then decided to turn right when I saw a school I recognized that is on the trail, and just kept turning whenever.  I found my obtainable dream house, and also some gorgeous, unobtainable (for now) houses.
It's amazing to me how sometimes awesome places can be so close, yet you've never experienced them before.  It makes me look forward to biking because more ground can be covered more quickly!

Tomorrow I will be covering the swim (at 5:40 am with Laurie and Elizabeth), and the bike and run at Tri practice.  Hopefully I can enjoy all as much as I did my run tonight.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Swim, Swam, Swum

I did my first official swim of the triathlon training tonight. It went really well.  I was supposed to swim 50 yards, and rest 45 seconds to 1 minute based on my ability. Well, I was a bit of an overachiever, I swam 80 yards (2 laps), and then took 30-45 second breaks.  It was nice to get into the pool and swim short bursts with resting time.  I didn't feel as tired or bored as when I go out and just swim for 20-30 minutes.  I think I will modify the swimming plan a little bit to increase distance, and speed. 

As I was swimming I noticed another swimmer that was swimming and then resting, so I asked her if she was also doing the Great Beginner Triathlon training, and she was! I was about done when she was just getting started, but I watched her for a few minutes and was able to let her know that she was bringing her arm all the way around when she was breathing.  We talked a little bit, but then I was done with my swim so I took off. 

I'm pretty optimistic that this triathlon will go MUCH better than my first!  For my first triathlon in 2010 I did the Trek Triathlon Series in Pleasant Prairie and just about quit after being in the water for 10 yards.  I didn't get any open water training in, and freaked out in the water!  I was so excited to get going that I neglected to mentally prepare for my long swim across the lake.  I feel that if I am able to maintain my running from my half marathon I should not have any problem with this triathlon.  I am looking forward to gaining knowledge from coaches Kitty, Cory, and Jessica at SBR Coaching

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Switching gears

Run Kayla, run has officially become swim, bike, run Kayla for the summer. Tonight was the kick-off of the Great Beginner Triathlon 8 week training program put on by SBR coaching in Verona and headed up by the lovely Kitty Cole. Tonight was pretty simple. We began by going over the group training schedule for the next few weeks, and then got the bicycles out. We rode a few laps around and then got some training suggestions based on what the coaches were seeing. Rule #1 I have to work on: look ahead, not at your feet when you take off (no starring at your feet even when clipping in or putting your feet in the cages).  Rule #2 that I struggle with is keeping my shoulders relaxed. How can one really relax their shoulders when crouched over a bike?! Those were my big areas to work on for biking.

Next Kitty discussed road etiquette. Some of the info I was already aware of; always pass on the left and let others know you are coming up on them, and obey traffic rules. I did learn that once stopped at a red light with no traffic, you are free to cross after 45 seconds because you on a bike will [hopefully] not trigger the light sensor. I also learned that you cannot ride your bike in a cross walk, it has to be ridden outside of it or walked.  Next we did a mini running clinic. We ran a third of a mile as the coaches watched. It turns out I don't swing my arms enough. I'm not sure how this happened, but I'll sure be working to fix it! I'm not sure if it's from my previously injured and weaker shoulder or my heart rate monitor rubbing on me. Anyways, good to know. Overall it was a nice class with cooperative weather. I'm hoping to get in full tri swing by swimming tomorrow. Here we go triathlon 2012!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Highs and lows

It's been 2 days since my half marathon, and since I did not get out yesterday for a recovery run, today seemed perfect.  I got off of work early because of a cancelled meeting, got some things done around the apartment, and took off wearing my new Road ID on one wrist and my Garmin as usually on the other.  The run started out great for the first mile, I was pacing faster than I thought I would be able to, and then I started to have pain in my lower leg, so I stopped to stretch. I started runing again, but now much, much slower and not feeling well at all!  All I wanted was to get home, but I decided I would adjust my attitude and do what I set out to do: enjoy the beautiful day with a nice relaxing run.  I struggled through mile 2, and as I was heading back I decided to take a detour down a road I had never been down.  I took a left, started looking around and became distracted looking at houses searching for "my future house".  I saw 3 cute houses for sale, although the caution tape that seemed to be on the ground from one kind of frightened me! I took a right, then another right, then a few more turns. Before I knew it I was at 3.78 miles turning back onto my street. As I ran down the street a little girl on a tricycle asked me "why are you running?" I shouted back to her "because I like to run", apparently my answer was not good enough for her because as I was getting my mail she rode over to me and asked again :o) I told her this time that I loved to accomplish goals, and would have told her all about my half marathon, but I didn't think she could fathom the distance.  So I switched the topic to shoes, and soon after she rode back across the street and I ran towards my building to finish out at 4 miles. It's amazing how one run can go from high to low, to high with the right attitude.  At 1.5 miles I was sure I would be done for in a mile, but I changed my attitude, went further, and enjoyed the run; even if it was slower than normal.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Wisconsin (half) Marathon

I did it! I completed my 2nd half marathon, and felt better than expected.  I enjoyed running the course today, and felt refreshed after the horrendously bad Friday I had!  Almost everything that could go wrong on Friday did, I was super stressed out at work, I didn't get done until after 4:15, and I told Jessica I would pick her up at 3, and then on my way rushing out of my apartment I left my purse.  Luckily Jessica was able to save the day and buy me dinner and my granola bars for pre-race.

This morning I woke up at 5:20 to prepare for the 7am start time, and almost immediately Aaron informed us (Laurie, Jessica, and I) that it was raining outside, so much for a 10% chance of rain.. But after my terrible Friday I set my mind that absolutely nothing was going to ruin my day, and definitely not a little cold and rain.  Around 6:20 left the hotel to head to the race start, and find our fellow ASR friends for a quick picture. 
Before we knew it we were being told to line up.  It was nice how it was set up, you didn't have a specific start corral, but you could start wherever you wanted based on your pace.  I wanted to run between a 9 and 10 minute mile so I started with the 9 minute mile group.  I think next time I would start futher up, I was passing a lot of people at first and had some trouble passing people up the hill on mile 8 or 9.  I started out with a 9:15 min mile, and decided I would try to maintain a pace around there as long as I felt good.  We looped down by the Lake, and then swooped through some really nice neighborhoods before we ran through the downtown (one of my favorite parts!). There were a ton of people lining the streets cheering us on, making the run go by just a little quicker.  That was about mile 4 and I was feeling great so I decided to take my GU to avoid a crash.  The GU must have worked because I ran mile 5 my fastest pace at an 8:47 minute mile.   Soon after that the police escorts came through on their motorcycles with the lead runners starting to loop back around, we all had to then stay to the left of the cones, which caused a little bit of congestion for most of the race remainder.  Running miles 6-8 I was still feeling great, but was having a little trouble passing runners in the narrower lanes.  Right around 8 miles I saw Nathan, Laurie and Aaron, it was nice to see some familiar faces in the mix.  Then as I decended a hill I saw Britten in a zone, but I got her attention.  At the bottom of the hill turning left I saw Tom and shouted out to him and waved.  4 miles to go.  And then I hit a bit of a wall at mile 10.

I told myself it was ok, and I opened my GU Chomps. I had told myself I had a goal of 9:30 minute miles, when in reality I wanted 9:12 (yes, a random number, but that was actually my average pace for a really great 12 mile training run I had a few weeks back), but either way I had a little cushion since I had run an average of about 9:05 thus far.  So I told myself it was ok to slow down, I concentrated on breathing in through my nose, and out through my mouth to try to lower my heart rate, and was able to maintain a an average pace around 9:18 or less.  Mile 11 was a slight uphill through part of the downtown with an out and back turn around at mile 12.  As I ran towards 12 noting that I could possibly finish in less than 2 hours, and working on my pacing plan I saw Jessica run by, then Aaron and Laurie.  I hit mile 12 with just under 10 minutes until the 2 hour mark, so I decided that I was going to start pushing at 12.75 miles and hopefully have enough gas in the tank to make it.  So around then I started to push my legs to move faster, checking my watch every minute to see how close to goal I was.  As I was sprinting in with 40 seconds to go until 2 hours I started counting down, and I knew I had slightly missed my new goal.  I heard my name announced as I was crossing the finish line, and then saw Bruce and Kitty cheering me on at the end.  I immediately stopped my watch at 2:00:30, and noticed that my distance was 13.2, so in fact, I did run a half marathon in under 2 hours, the course is just slightly off, or I did not take every corner hugging the inside.

Mission accomplished! I look forward to seeing the official race results later tonight.  Where's the next half?!

My Half Marathon Splits

WI Marathon by kayj0486 at Garmin Connect - Splits

Thursday, May 3, 2012

T Minus 2 days

As you may have guessed from the title I am 2 days away from my second half marathon!! I am going to be doing Wisconsin Marathon, half marathon.  I'm ready to get out there and see what I can do.  Originally I was hoping for a run like I had a few weeks ago with the ASR (All Season Runner ) crew at an average 9:10 min/mile pace over 12 miles.  Since then I have had a few rough runs, and a few great runs, so now the new goal is under 9:30 min/ mile, which would put me right around the 2 hour mark.  I hope all goes well, and I can meet this goal.  My first half marathon I ran an average of 10 minute miles, and felt pretty tired for half of it.  Either way I'm sure I will have a great time with great friends.  Laurie and Aaron are leaving between 1-2, and then Jessica and I are heading to Kenosha after 3, and meeting them for dinner at HuHot.  It looks fun, it's a Mongolian grill, which I've never been to before.

Alright friends, wish me luck, I must go pack now!