Month: August 2016

Week 2 of 16 Ironman Arizona Training – Size does matter


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Week 2 is in the books! Unfortunately it ended on a bad note.  Overall I managed the training fairly well. I found myself exhausted on Wednesday so instead of driving into Santa Monica for a Tower 26 swim, I slept in. Until 7:30!! That is unheard of. My body needed sleep and I listened. After that little blip, the rest of the week went well.


I took the Garmin Virb to the pool for a little fun! I also finally made an effort to learn how to use the tempo trainer in the pool. Wow! That little beep can really kick your ass! I used the stroke rate setting (#3) to work on varying stroke rates with pulling. What was fascinating to notice was how much harder swimming with paddles is when you are maintaining the same stroke rate. It was also interesting to see at what point in an interval it gets hard to maintain the same stroke rate. I know I need to work on my stroke rate so this tool will be used much more often!


Saturday night Stuart and I got to dress up in something besides Lycra and spend time with some friends to celebrate a wedding! Love this guy so much!

But Sunday was when things got bad. I headed out for a 4 hour ride to be followed by a 30 minute run. About 1 hour into the ride my knee started hurting. My knee has NEVER hurt while riding my bike.  Ever. It got so bad that every single revolution hurt. Problem was I was 25 miles from home and Stuart was out riding as well. I finally called a very sweet friend who drove out and collected me and my bike. Later that day I was trying to figure out what the heck is going on. I thought maybe it is the bike. Maybe my road bike won’t hurt. So I took it out and as soon as I got out of the saddle for a little rise the pain was back. I went home and decided to test running. No issue running. At all!


The pain is very much like an IT Band problem I have in the past. I have just never had the pain on the bike; it always shows up when running. Racking my brain today trying to figure out why this is happening I figured something out. I recently switched running shoes plus I have been running a lot!. I am trying to run in shoes that have a 4mm drop as opposed to the 8mm drop I have been running in for the last 3-4 three years. Last time I tried to switch shoes like this and work on my running form, my IT band gave me trouble for months. So my non-expert analysis is that the shoes are the culprit. Size does matter! Even if it is just 4mm!

So I have ordered new shoes with an 8mm drop and I am going to do all the exercises and stretches that are good for IT bands and HOPE that is sorts itself out.

Week 1 of 16 Ironman Arizona Training – we aren’t messing around this time!

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Here we go again. Training for Ironman #4 is underway. As you can tell by the totals for week 1, we are not messing around!

I was pretty bummed about my performance (specifically on the bike) at Vineman 70.3. I have said stated that I want to qualify for Kona by the time I am 45 (4 years left). That will never happen if I can’t get faster on the bike. It is really that simple. After Vineman I took a couple of weeks off from structured training and wallowed in my own pity for a bit. After talking about it with a several people in my life who have experience with getting to Kona, the drive to make it happen started to grow again. I am kind of looking at Arizona this year as a test to see if I can get to Kona one day. If I can make some decent gains this year over my 2014 performance, I will keep pushing full steam ahead. If I don’t makes the gains I want, I think I will take a year of full Ironmans and try some other endurance adventures.

With all that being said, I have never started training for an Ironman feeling this fabulous! The first week was a challenge but I really enjoyed every minute of training! A few notable things from the week. First,   I got to try a nice long brick in the new Zele kit by Coeur Sports. Kit was great! Held up well for a 4 hour ride and 30 minute run on a very hot and sunny day.



I also finally tried to make Hailey’s Salty Balls. I am always looking for the perfect ride nutrition. I found them just a bit dry but if you take small bites the are amazing!!!


And while Stuart and I were out riding Sunday we meet the sweetest girl, Bella, who has been riding her bike in North America for 3.5 months! How cool is that!IMG_1986.JPG

Thanks for following along!

2016 Dwight Crum Pier to Pier Race Report


I did this race once before in 2012. The timing worked out to do it this year and I am so glad I did. The real race here is in the non-wetsuit division so I think I will do that one next year. But since I am training for a wetsuit swim at Arizona so I need to practice in a wetsuit!

I had hopes of swimming the race in under an hour. But I forgot about one small issue, the current! I got out pretty quickly and had no issue with the waves. I tend to swim wide to avoid congestion. I do better with clean water and less people. I truly think I swim faster that way even if it might add a couple of yards.

I also lucked out this year because a paddle border ended up paddling next to me for almost the entire race. Every time I took a breath to my left he was there! The swim felt great the whole time. It feel like it takes forever to get to the Manhattan Pier. The last 1/4 of the swim it got really choppy. I am so glad I didn’t look at my watch during the swim because I would have been very disappointed. There was a fairly strong negative current and I ended up averaging 1:53/100 yrds. That is almost 20 seconds slower that I usually swim!


I got to the finish and ran as fast as I could though the finish line. When I looked at my watch I was bummed, 1:07. (Garmin data is here) But once I talked to my friends I heard it was slow for everybody and I felt a bit better about my swim. I waited for the results and saw I got 4th…I hate 4th!! But after seeing I was 5th woman overall (for the wetsuits) I changed my tune a bit! I missed 3rd by 20 seconds. In open water swimming you can’t easily see your competition so I really don’t think there was much I could have done to get that 20 seconds.

I also went back and checked out my data in Strava. Cool thing about Strava is it shows you the data for the other people who swam at the same time. Of the 14 others who logged it in Strava, only 4 people swam a better line than me (as in they swam less yards). At least I know I didn’t over swim it!

A couple of thanks for this one! SBR Sports has been taking care of me for almost three years now! I am so thankful for the support pf their amazing products! Like I tell my friends, My hair isn’t green, my swim suits last forever and I don;t stink like chlorine! And I never chafe in my wetsuit!

Week 0/17 Ironman Arizona Training


Well, here we go again. Just about to start my Ironman specific training for my 4th Ironman. I am very excited to train for this one. I have done Arizona before so this will be my first repeat performance on an Ironman distance course. I hope that works in my favor!

I have had high hopes about someday punching my ticket to Kona. To be honest, lately I have been feeling that may be out of my reach. I do think that I could do it, physically. BUT, I am not sure I have the mental drive to be that focused or the time in my life to give it all the attention it will require. I plan on training my absolute best for Arizona this year. I have pretty aggressive (for me) time goals.

  • Swim – 1:05
  • Bike – Sub 6:00
  • Run – Sub 4:00
  • Total – 11:15

But to be competitive to get into Kona I need to take an additional 30-45 minutes off my goal time. I am not totally sure I have the time to make that happen. I am looking ahead to next year and I may even take a bit of a break from Ironman. The cost and time requirements are making it hard to keep working on the goal. It may be time to take a year to do more stuff that is local and has a lower financial investment. Plus I really want to set a new marathon PR at Boston! 3:30 baby!!!

Anyway, watch this space for training updates as I prepare for Arizona. Thanks, as always, for your following and support!