Tuesday, October 28, 2008
I am ALREADY bored.
My name is Krista & I am addicted to exercise. There you have it. I admit it. It's a problem. It's sometimes healthy, sometimes over the top. It's there and I just can't seem to get rid of it. There are worse things I could obsess over, right?
I am still indifferent about the whole ordeal. Disappointment is probably top of the list. Not in myself, just in general. I know there is absolutely NOTHING I could have done about my situation. That does stop the "what-ifs" though. I look at those race results and see where I could have been. That's probably the hardest, most frustrating part.
My good friend Sara, my medical (NP) expert sent me a very sweet (along with so many other people!!) email that really helped me feel better.. This girl has been around through all of my drama. From IT band injury and surgery to my Spine issues and epidural injections in my neck. Poor thing things she can get away from the office, unfortunately I always seem to reel her back in :-) Anyway - this is what she wrote:
"I know it's got to be so frustrating with what you WANT to do and what your body LETS you...And of course, the thing to remember with something like asthma is that it is absolutely no reflection of how you take care of yourself and how good of shape you're in... Something you just happened to inherit and something you need to medicate so it doesn't keep you from doing the things you want...A lot of times I'll have my asthmatics use their meds from Feb-May and then again from Sept- Nov... but depending on pollution levels (as you well know) you may need it for a week or two here or there throughout the year."
The part is bold is what really hit me. It's so true, and lot of times I take my breathing problems with a grain of salt. I am very regular about one of my medications, but with the others, the ones that really help on a day to day basis, particularly before workouts and in prime allergy/cold/pollution times, I am less than perfect. My only reasoning (or excuse) I suppose, is that you hear about people with problems all the time. Half the people I know use an inhaler for exercise induced asthma. The majority of people I know have a hard time breathing in the crappy AZ air. I guess I forget that I'm not just like them. I have a non-seasonal or subjective problem that I DO have to pay attention to DAILY.
Yes, I am stubborn... Aren't we all though?
With all of that said.... Of course I have a new "Plan B."
I was very uncomfortable on Sunday when I got home from the race. My chest felt like I had a brick sitting on it. It hurt to breath deep. I slept another 10+hours and in the morning got in to see my Dr. We are trying another medication that will help open up my airways. I tried this medicine before, when I got sick from all the dust with the remodel, but I wasn't very good about continuing taking it, as it has a steroid and I thought it was part of my sleeping problem. After talking with my Dr., we decided to try it again, a lower dose this time - and hopefully the sleeping problems were just a reaction to all the crazy amounts of steroids I was put on at the time....
It's been 2 days, and I am already feeling better. My chest doesn't hurt, it's just really tight in the morning, and as the day goes on and I take the second dose of the medicine, I feel even more open.
I was scouring the internet trying to come up with a race(s) to not waste all this fitness I have. Momo and I were IM'ing and I told her I was going to do the Tucson half marathon in Dec, and I guess I just had to let my bike fitness go.... She started asking about any bike races, etc.... And we talked about tour de tucson. Thing is, I can't ride my road bike for that kind of distance. I'm just not comfortable on her for longer than about 2 hours. She's just a little too big, and it starts to take a tole after a lot of miles.
Momo told me to ride HER road bike. At first I was like, NO WAY. She's brand NEW. And, then I looked at the date and saw it was 11/22. IMAZ - so that was OUT! Again, she assured me IM was on SUNDAY not Saturday.... Why was I thinking it was Saturday??? Weird...
Anyhow, so I am going to do it. I'm going to do the El Tour de Tucson on 11/22.
Seriously, how lucky am I? Who would let someone ride their brand new barely used bike? Good friends people.. that's who.
Part 2 of Blan B is The Tucson Half marathon on 12/7. We have a LOT of friends here heading down to do either the Full or the Half, some trying to BQ.
So, there you have it. I'm meeting with a coach (my master's swim coach's husband) on Thursday to make me a 5 week schedule to get me thru those races, the right away.
And, most importantly I'm taking my medicine and getting better and not over-doing it.
And there you have it. Plan B!
Monday, October 27, 2008
Yesterday, it was a real true DNF. I'm still not sure how I feel about it. Frustrated, yes. Sad, yes. I'm not mad or disappointed in myself though. I know my body, and as much as I like to pretend things aren't bad or I'm fine - the reality is that I was not fine. I spent 7 days resting. Loading on vitamins and green tea and supplements. I slept 10+hrs a night and did basically nothing.
Momo had me convinced (kinda) that I was just over-analyzing and being like her! I convinced myself that the pain in my back was a knot from laying around so much, not my lungs. Denial is a very powerful thing you know.
Come race day I was hyper and excited and with so much support and well wishes from so many people, I was sure it would all come together.
My morning went flawlessly. I got to the start of my swim wave. One of the first girls in the water. New goggles worked, I was at the front of the pack and not nervous at all.
There was no anxiety, no swim drama. I did weave back and forth quite a bit, but didn't freak out. I had a lot of trouble seeing the buoys. The water temp was perfect. Wetsuit near perfect.
I hit the last buoy to swim in and looked at my watch for the first time. 35mins. I was a little bummed, as I was hoping to be out of the water UNDER that. I had passed many men that started in front of me.. and only saw 1-2 of the caps from the wave behind me.
I got out of the water, had my wetsuit stripped and actually ran through transition. I got on my bike and that's where everything went wrong. My legs were toast. I was going 15-17 on the flats. 12mph on the smallest inclines. I figured I would eventually loosen up, but it wasn't happening. My lungs were burning and aching. I dropped to my small chainring. My HR was 175+. I was passed by about THIRTY people in the first few miles. I felt like I was going all out and just spinning and getting nowwhere. I was disoriented and my head was throbbing. I ran into a "keep right" traffic sign with my bike. I turned around to make sure the sign didn't tip over and hit someone and almost ran into another bike.
On one of the first out and back small loops (downhill even) I started coughing.... so I pulled over and threw up. I knew it was not going to happen. I would put my health and lungs into some serious jeopardy if I continued. I'm stubborn, but I'm trying not to be so stupid. It was not worth it to me to suffer out there. I trained smart, I trained FAST. I was on my way to a very big PR - a very attainable goal of 5:30. With the times in my training I could have even come just under that.
Unfortunately yesterday was NOT may day. I got on the sidewalk and rode back to transition. I borrowed a cell phone to call Shane. We got my stuff and went home. I showered and put on sweats and snuggled on the couch under a blanket with my dogs on top of me. (mind you it's like 75 degs in my house, but I was cold). My chest felt like it had a huge brick on it. Pain deep into my back when I took a big breath.
I slept another 10hours. My body feels fine today - no aches (besides the rested, tapered, ready to race legs) but my lungs hurt to inhale. I'm heading to the Dr. shortly to see what is going on. I've basically had trouble for over 2 months with my asthma. My airways have been tight, and that's my only reasoning for being sick so much. I hope he can come up with a solution to get my breathing back on track.
I checked the race results this morning. Some people had GREAT days. Cindy & Lisa had fantastic races!!! it was GREAT to meet you both!
Although I was unhappy with my swim time, I noticed most everyone had slow swim times. I was 6/41 in my AG & 38/208 for OA women. After a speedy transition I was in 30th place for the females. Too bad that's as far as I got :-) I'm trying to see the glass half full with that.
Of course I've already been on line looking for a replacement race (assuming my Dr can help me clear up my lungs). Unfortunately AZ is about the only place still warm, and besides Clearwater & Silverman there is nothing!
I'm so sad to see my training just slip away. My swim & bike & run times faster than I've ever seen. I guess this is what happens when you put all your eggs in 1 (or 2 ) baskets. I'm just so thankful this did not happen to me on an Ironman day. It also makes me happy or satisfied with my decision to not race Ironman next year. To do more races. Challenge myself. Get fast.
I want to thank everyone out there that has been so supportive. I felt like I had so man people rooting for me. Shane & Momo & Heather & Sara all there for the swim start. The countless emails of encouragement from so many. My sister & niece and Natalie were all on their way to see my finish. I really feel so lucky to have so many great people in my life! Thanks for all of your emails and facebook posts.
Remember, I'm tough and I've fought all these things that have stacked up against me and won. I'll get my asthma in check and I'll find another race to conquer. I just might be a little sad for now....
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Oh - and I did the funniest (or weirdest) thing a minute ago. I hate goggles fogging up, so I bought a new pair. Then I got sick and haven't used them yet. And I certainly didn't want to chance it and get in Tempe Town Lake today... So, I put my cap on, then my new goggles - filled my bathroom sink with water and stuck my head in it. Shane wasn't watching. I'm sure I would have been laughing under water and choked. Thankfully, I do have a spare pair that I will have in some one's hand just in case they fill up with water or something when I get in. God help me....
Can you tell I'm hyper? I feel so much better today. Not 100% by most of the aches are gone. OH, and I drank about a pitcher of ice tea at lunch. Oops. I wonder if THAT is gonna make me pee all day long tomorrow. Don't worry, I'm so not above peeing myself :-)
Mini-me is already parked in transition. In a crappy T-spot I might add. She's row 7 out of like 12 or something. On the far inside lane. Nothing to remember or mark my row off. Let's just hope I can remember the number (row) 7 after being horizontal for 30+minutes.
OH yah - 30+minutes. We'll see about that. My swims in my mini-me wetsuit have been fast. Effortless fast. So fast that if I swam that pace in the race I would be done in around 32minutes without much effort. My race experience is telling me that is a little far fetched so I'm hoping for under 35mins. It's doable.
The temps are going to be warm. Probably about 85 or so when I finish. If I race my race, and nothing goes wrong.... I could be finishing around 12:30. You do the math. Putting down any more detailed times freaks me out. Cause then it's a real live goal for everyone to see. And, well, that's just not how I roll. I've put out more hints and splits and times then ever in the past so if you have read this blog you can probably figure it out.
So without blabbing any more (again I blame it on the ice tea and lack of training and 10+hrs of sleep per night this week) I'm going to just say that I'm feeling REALLY good. I'm EXCITED (not usually the case for me pre-race). I've told all my friends what they need to do put put the fire in me if I'm slowing down tomorrow. I've thought about it enough that I really think this might be the race it all comes together.
See you on the other side!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
And here we go:
Before - view from our bedroom. The huge double sink vanity with all the wasted space, as well as the mid 80s retro mirrors and lights....
Sideways view of inside the shower. This was a huge bathtub, but no jets.... Oh - and the cracked fiberglass (or whatever it was)... That is what happens when you take 2 LaPans (present one excluded) a case a beer and no plumbing experience. That was day one in the new house...
Another view of the shower door.....
My old sink and tiny closet...
This is the new view from our bedroom - The cabinet was custom built (for sizing) off something I saw at Restoration Hardware. The wood stained an espresso with red hues to match our bedroom furniture. The quality is very very good and the guy added in pull out gliders under the sink. He also built the medicine
This is just a picture inside the shower. By taking out the old tub, we had a lot to work with space-wise, so we added this bench and used extra material from the granite slab. The shelves are shown before they were installed (next picture)
Like I said, the shower is HUGE. We have vaulted ceilings in there, so they took the tile pretty high. The glass doors have the "euro" fixtures that make it look a lot nicer.
And, here is the 2nd bathroom before. Same wood, fixtures and fiberglass shower. Oh, and you can't see the detail of the paint - but it was horrible. When we moved in this bathroom had wallpaper. We removed it, did a horrible job of re-texturing and then tried to do some fancy paint job (Ralph Lauren textures, River Rock I think) It did NOT turn out!
The tile on the floor was installed by an old friend.... not his forte' - it also did not look good at all!
Inside the shower/tub
And the new tile/paint/fixtures!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
I thought I was in the clear... I thought getting sick 6 weeks ago was almost perfect timing so I couldn't get sick for the actual race.
Then damn it all to hell on Saturday I started feeling like crap. I do think a LOT of it has to do with all of the wind and crap in the air.. It's been relentless lately. My lungs are weak, so any change something can get in there and jack them all up, well... it seems to happen.
I used to be able to just drink OJ, overhydrate, Emergency/Airborne and sleep and with in a few days I would be good to go....
So, Saturday I just felt a little tired. Then Sunday I woke up a little achy, mostly in the neck (back & sides). My throat seems fine, not too stuffy. I drank a ton of fluids yesterday and bought some Cold-Eeze and went to bed at 9pm.
I actually woke up feeling MUCH better. I had a 35min low HR run on my schedule so I took the dogs out. Kept my HR around 140-145, didn't seem any higher than normal, but I could tell by the end my neck was starting to ache a bit again. My lungs also burning a bit.
On the bright side my legs feel absolutely FANTASTIC!!! Rested...
So, please send me all your home remedies!!! SO far I have airborne (I found it worked better than Emergen C), Cold-Eeze, and lots of fluid!
Friday, October 17, 2008
Mark Allen's training plan taper mixes things up the last 2 weeks. Instead of doing 2 workouts a day, with only one rest day - you have 2 days with all three sports done. And 2 weeks out is all about speed and tempo. Between those tripple set days are rest days. Wednesday was my first. I started with a speed bike, followed by a speed run, followed by a swim....more on the 3rd in a minute....
Maybe it's because I trained for Ironman 2 years in a row? I forgot what this not so tired, fired up feeling was like? I don't know, this time it feels SO great!
Like, so great that where at the beginning of this training I decided it was "all about the bike" and I completely ignored the swim & the run... I put very challenging goals out there for my bike split. I was less confident in my swimming and my running, but felt strong on the bike.
Well, things seemed to have changed. My running has done a 180! In comparison to my Ironman paces I've dropped ~:40/mile off my long run pace and significantly more off my tempo pace. Most of this happened in the last 2-3weeks! Maybe the less is more is working for me this time? Unfortunately I did not get to test my new-found speed on anything longer than 9 miles due to the IT band, but endurance isn't what I'm worried about next Sunday.
And the swim.... The swim & I have a love hate relationship. I know I have potential, but when it comes down to proving it, I usually come up short. Honestly, I had kinda just given up on my swim speed. After my neck issues and epidural injections last year I had 6 months of no swimming. It took me about 8 months to get back to the speed I was before all of that... and then I was going NO WHERE. I started doing some tough speed sets with my masters coach, which I felt was helping me sustain my "fast" speed, but not really getting me any faster...
Then again, like the running, something happened in the last 2 weeks. My on switch, if you will, finally went ON! I dropped about 5 seconds off both my 200 speed and my 100 speed! And, after some more wetsuit drama, I squeezed my butt into my very first "mini-me" wetsuit from 2003, and bam - TWENTY seconds off of my 200's. TWENTY seconds.... I felt like I was flying!
It's a fantastic wetsuit, the old Ironman Stealth (before Blue Seventy Helix) I bought to do my first colder water triathlon several years ago. I got it on clearance for like $99 or something! I downsized (on the edge of the size chart) to get the deal... and when the next season came around, well needless to say I couldn't really fit in the damn thing anymore! So, I upped a size and wore the same wetsuit, a bigger size for a few more races. In fact, I even posted the mini-me suit on a few websites to try to sell it. It had only been worn once!
It had been a while sine I had raced in a sleeveless wetsuit so I thought I should try it out in the pool. So, last week I brought my wetsuit to the pool and tried it out. I was faster - about 10seconds on my 200's, but when I got out of the pool, I felt the same problem I had in the past with a borrowed wetsuit that was too big. Water gushing down the legs putting me off balance. I had been holding a lot of extra water...
So, freaking out I decided to see if I could squeeze into the smaller suit. I dug it out of the bottom of a storage bin on top of a closet. THAT was a workout. I got in it, but DAMN. Really, it was just in the neck. Like right by your trachea, in the middle of the neck. I decided no way could I swim in that and I put it away. But then at masters someone else was trying out a wetsuit and Anne, our coach was checking the fit. I decided I should tell her about the water filling up & see what she thought...
The next day I was at the pool in the mini-me suit to try it out. She said it was absolutely perfect! I showed her the neck problem, and she said as long as it's not restricting my breathing, and I could tolerate it the rest of the fit was perfect. The test was a set of 200's descending in speed. 2:50,2:48,2:41!! The last one a solid 11seconds faster than my best time in the other wetsuit! I felt like I was gliding across the pool!
Anne told me, if there was any way I could tolerate the neck problem, "I HAD to wear that wetsuit!"
So, now I'm all giddy. I have all these visions of my race. Of having my ONE swim. That one where I push myself, and get out in front and DON'T get off course.... And, I can't gain a freaking lb in the next week or I don't think I'll fit in it! I'll have to swim in it again next week :-)
And the bike... Well, I'm not nearly as confident as I was.... but I've got the heart and the desire & I'm really hoping that carries me!
The run. Wow. I just don't know what to think. I feel SO good right now. I'm faster, more efficient and surprising myself every time I finish. I actually end up looking at my Garmin over and over to see if those times were for real! The heat will be a big factor in my performance.
So for now, I'm going to enjoy being "ON" and hoping more than anything that I can keep on, all or nothing next Sunday. If any of you out there see me next weekend.... If I'm not flying by you - or my HR is not in zone 3. I expect 4 words from you....
SUCK IT UP BUTTERCUP!
btw... being "on" is making me very hungry.... that does not bode well for the min-me wetsuit!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
You all remember my dear friend Tonsa, right? The one who was diagnosed with breast cancer less than 2 years ago while training for the Ragnar Relay?
Well, not only has she been "cancer free" for several months, she has also since celebrated her 50th birthday, ran and placed in her age group in several local races and is currently training to Boston qualify at the Tucson Marathon. And you know it, I will be there to cheer here in!
However, probably one of her most proud moments happened last Sunday at the Komen Race for the Cure. I'll let you read what she sent out!
Dearest Friends ……………………………………………. Howdy and Happy Monday --- here is the Race Report …………………..
Over 34,000 people stepped to the start line on Sunday morning ------ they only gave out three medals to the top three survivor finishers and WE won one of them!!!!
Running for all that each of you have meant to me, running for all those women who fought before me and running for all those who may come after me, I strung together three 8 minute miles to capture third place and one of the coveted medals!!! It will now and forever more be my favorite race medal --
The best moments were seeing Del's astonishment as I was bookin' to the finish (I know I surprised both of us!) and then climbing up on the medal podium and seeing that sea of people there supporting the cause.
The real winner is the Phoenix community we raised over 2 million dollars for Komen!!
Monday, October 13, 2008
Epiphany. RICE works people!!! Oh, and less is more... who would have thought? Not me that's for sure!
I try not to talk about running as much as the cycling cause it's easier for me to put my money where my mouth is when I can actually control my body. I can ride hard if I push it. Running, that all depends on my body. And the stupid weather, I suppose. ON the run, I tend to ugh, give up in races. Get tired, walk. Let people pass me cause "they're just faster!"
Well, since I haven't been running all that much, I decided I could at least push the runs that I have been doing. So, on my long runs for the past month I've been negative splitting the last part. Letting my HR go into zone 3.
I think it's helping. On Saturday, Shane, the dogs & I did a 6mile loop to start. We avg'd 9:10min miles, HR 144. I finished the run by myself pushing it & feeling fantastic 3 miles 8:38 pace, 155 HR. My overall avg was 8:59, 147 HR!
Unfortunately I wasn't able to get my long run any further than 9 miles for this training, so I'll just have to hope that the bike ride loosens up my IT band enough that those last 4 miles aren't horrible.
Then today, I woke up and saw an extra speed run on my schedule! WTF? It wasn't too bad, some "pick-ups" with 2x12mins getting faster ever 3mins.... It was only 53degs outside, and the dogs were following me around like crazy, so I decided since my ITs don't do all that great with the speed work, I'd substitute this first speed run with a "tempo" run & take the dogs.
Wow, temperature shock! 53degs is a far cry from the 75-90deg weather I've been running in. my hands were cold and quads bright red! My HR was 15beats lower, and even when running in the low 8min pace wasn't rising above 153. Whoot! This is gonna be a GREAT run... come on Abby - speed up!
Baxter was in Irondog heaven!
I decided to do a route that is a little over 4 miles, thinking that would about the same time as the speed run. It's up down up down, with one half mile hill. I typically run this route at about a 9:30 pace aerobically.
Today the kids and I were on fire. I never even got to push my HR, my body just felt fantastic. Even up the hill....
The last half mile I was really pushing the pace and finally got my HR into zone 3. Poor Abby was dying, but we all had big smiles on our faces...
4.25miles, 147 HR (171max), 8:28 avg pace!!!!
Now, of course I am on cloud 9 right now... I'm shocked at how well my running is going. I know my IT band is the ruler of all things race wise, but there is also a hint of hope in side me that thinks I might finally have that one good race. Finally have a good run split. Finally have all things fall into place?!?!
I usually don't put all this stuff out there, in fear of being let down if the results don't happen the way they should, so I'm wondering if putting it out there for all to see will help me dig deeper on race day. Even if it's 90 degs out?
Oh, and the swim.... I usually have those BAD dreams. You know, forgot goggles, missed the start, no wetsuit.... got off course. Well, last night I had a dream I was doing a "splash & dash" race. 1.2mile swim. This is the funny part. The winner, Keanu Reeves (WTF - I can't stand him!).... Me, first girl out of the swim in SUB 30mins!
Now I know I'm not going to swim a sub 30min swim, but could a first GOOD swim dream - good swim race? Hmmm.
Progress on the bike. Well, honestly - since I had my legs dead dog tired, ride by myself a few weeks ago where I avg'd 18.3 things haven't gone as well. It's been crazy windy here and momo & I have been getting our asses kicked by the wind, hanging on for dear life.
Shane says it's making us stronger, so let's just hope he's right! I know if it's windy like it has been I won't be able to hit my goal of 20.5mph, but if I can get good weather I know it's doable.
So, here's to 2 more weeks of tapering, resting, not freaking out and praying for good weather!!!!
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Bet Shane read the title and thought I ordered myself something online... again :-)
Anyway, this post is about RUNNING shoes. Boring, I know.. but, probably one of the single most important things to being a successful, injury free runner (you know, cause I'm all of that and all - ha!)....
I've been thru it all. Several running assessments, orthotics, Adidas, Nike, Saucony, Brooks... you name it, I've probably tried it (remember, shoes we are talking about here people). In the past year or so, I've been running in Asics Gel Nimbus. Doesn't hurt that a good friend is a podiatrist and gets them pretty cheap for me. And, so far, they seem to be helping a lot. No more icky blistered callouses. No sore arches, etc.
But, honestly shouldn't a $120 shoe last longer than 200-230miles? I mean COME ON. Thankfully, I've been averaging only about 15miles a week since June, but once again... in the last week or so everything started to feel like it was falling apart... So, I went to my trusty training log, and sure enough - it was getting time to break in a new pair.
I meant to do it last week.... that didn't happen, then I was going to do it Monday - oops, forgot again. Then for SURE on Wed, but then I was trying to sneak out so the dogs didn't see me (like i had em fooled!) cause I was doing speed work, so once again I didn't do it.
Holy Hell people. My legs and knees hurt last night like I had run 20miles. Or a marathon. OR SOMETHING horrible. They were throbbing and achy and oh - just not right. I was sitting on the couch with 2 bags of frozen peas, one each leg. Dude, it was only 6.5miles!!! Ha..
But then I got to thinking. You know how anyone who doesn't run, or thinks you are crazy for running, always says the SAME THING. That one thing that if you heard one more time you could just scream???
"I can't run, my knees are bad."
Yah, that one thing. Well.... Call me a genius, but I figured it out. It's cause they need some new DAMN shoes!!! Duh. I mean if I threw on my old "running shoes" from 1999 and tried to run 2 miles, I'd prolly say the same thing.
Point taken? I'm going to go switch my orthotics into my last pair of new shoes in stock (a la' Krista's closet) so I will have no more complaining to do about not being cut out for running....
I do have one question though.... How long do YOUR shoes last, cause really, I think just over 200miles is a bit ridiculous!
And yes, Molly.... if you are reading this - I was thinking of you while writing this post. NO MORE RUNNING IN YEAR OLD SHOES!
shoot.. now I've got CUTE shoes on my mind. damn it. maybe I should actually try taking a shower and getting out of my workout cloths first... hmmmm
Monday, October 6, 2008
I just hope this fantastic weather can hold up for Soma this year. It's a 50/50 chance. The year I did it, 3 years ago - it was like last year. Blistering hot. I have however trained my body a bit more this year, running and pushing my HR in the heat... Hopefully that helps. I'm trying not to think about it too much.
Anyhoo, enough of that. Maybe I'm just a poor sport for getting my ass kicked. No, drinking scrabble is STUPID. Unless next time we have a category! Yah.. that's a good one.