Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Happy 60th Birthday, Mom

Yesterday I was putting a few things on my calendar and that's when I realized what today was.  April 16th, my mom's birthday.  My mom's 60th birthday.  It's still so unreal to me that she's gone.  That just before her 58th birthday she left us.  That's SO young.  Today I rode my bike for 3 hours with my FIFTY year old friend.  I look at her sometimes in awe.  When you take care of your health and live life to the fullest, it's never ending what the possibilities are.

When I think about this sadness, it really just fuels my fire to keep dreaming, keep pushing and keep reaching to do things I never thought possible.  Of the many things you did teach me, mom, these are the lessons I will take with me every day.  Every day when things seem hard and I'm tired, or grumpy or feeling lazy.  I'm doing what I love because, I can.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Marquee Olympic

Once I recovered (mentally and physically) from camp, I was feeling awesome!  My weekend workouts were stellar and I was full of energy.  With an Olympic (ish, long bike) distance race on tap I was really excited to see where my fitness was.  Perfect taper for a marathon, right?  2.5hr all out race!  Of course it is when you are BSC!  The bonus would be that I did this race last year after only 4 weeks of triathlon focused training (coming off my marathon focus) and this year I have been solely focused on my Ironman CDA training since January.

All week long I was hyper.  My workouts were short and zippy with a lot of fast swimming trying to force a good swim split out of me.  I was calm and excited, not even remotely stressed or worried about splits.  I was just ready to go out there and go HARD.  This is a new found confidence when it comes to racing, and I'm not gonna lie, I like it.  It sure beats worried about the outcome.  When you follow your training plan, eat well, and most importantly NAIL your recovery, then come race day you get to showcase it all.  There are things we can control (attitude, pacing, nutrition and grit), the rest is not up to us.

Friday and Saturday leading up to the race I began feeling lethargic, crampy and waking up with massive headaches (the hangover with out the booze!).  This all came to light when I woke up Sunday at 4am with (sorry guys!) some girl issues.  The rest of the morning I was really uncomfortable, my body temperature was off and my stomach was a mess.  This is not something that happens very often to me, but boy was it kicking me in the ass today!

I had a pretty good swim.  I gave up looking at swim times in this lake a long time ago, so when I saw a 2+ minute improvement over last year when I got out of the water I was happy.  

On the bike which is where I was expecting to see the most improvement over last year, I was just FLAT.  My first loop I had NOTHING and was really struggling to push hard.  Thankfully, experience and a really smart coach have taught me that when it happens to be a "girls issue" kinda day... extra calories can be needed so I immediately popped a gel.  Sure enough it worked and I was able to pick up the pace a bit on the second lap.

I rushed out of T-2 and headed out on the run.  I spent the first mile laughing that no matter how hard I felt like I was running my pace wasn't even close to my half marathon pace.  I spent 3 miles trying to get comfortable but I was still just FLAT.  I wasn't hot like I should be, my legs weren't on fire.  I just had no gas.  My stomach was throbbing and I just wanted to lie down.  At mile 4 a guy on my team came by and told me to hop on like I'm on my aerobars.  I pulled in behind him and tried to stay with him, but just had no other gears.  He did lift my spirits though and I kept him in sight telling myself in 16 minutes it will all be over!  At mile 5 my nausea got the best of me and I threw up in my mouth.  Less than 10 minutes I said!  

I saw a girl on an out and back that beat me last year in the last 1/4 mile and took 1st place by :08.  I gutted it out just waiting to be passed, knowing I had nothing to respond with, but thankfully crossed the finish line before anyone else behind me, but still having no idea (or care!) where I landed.  

It was such a weird feeling.  My legs weren't tired, I wasn't gasping for air, I was just DONE, and so happy to not be out there anymore.  While some may disagree with me because I did end up with an age group award, this race was not a good day for me.  I did everything I could with what I had yesterday, but it was not fun, not comfortable, and most importantly I KNOW that it was not an indicator of where I am and what I'm capable of.  It's been a long time since I've had a race when my body just didn't show up to perform, and I know that it happens.  I know that it wasn't in my control.  I'm just really really REALLY grateful this wasn't June 29th :)

I stuck around all afternoon hanging out with my friends and teammates at the awards.  Our team did amazing and cleaned house!  Most importantly, my athlete and friend Sippy, had a fantastic day out there, nailed her pacing had a GREAT race.

I have to admit it's a really good place to be in when you can move on and not worry about what happened.  Yesterday was just a little piece of the puzzle I'm building, and I'm confident that my body was just not up for giving it all and I'm perfectly ok and respect that!  I feel a whole lot better today, but still really tired so I'm just taking it easy.

Next up, the Boston Marathon.  I actually (finally) started to get REALLY excited about the trip today ;)

And, of course, it wouldn't be a good, or a less than good race without some bling for my dogs :)

Monday, April 7, 2014

Coaching! Inspired by "Pay it Forward"

A couple of years ago I read this post by Jen Harrison. I thought it was the COOLEST thing ever.  Each year at the beginning of the year, she offers up coaching services in an effort to "pay it forward," providing coaching services to someone with hardship or other motivating factor.

Inspired by her generosity, combined with my love of coaching and helping athletes, I've decided to open up my coaching services in a similar way. I would like to offer my TeamBSC coaching services which include weekly personalized training schedules, and unlimited email contact. The coaching services will start May 1st and go through the end of your "A" race for 2014.

I'm looking for a very highly motivated athlete that is willing to be open minded to a new training plan, and willing to provide feedback and upload workout data so I can best help him/her achieve their goal!

If you are interested in getting more out of your racing season, or looking for a change, please send me a note with some personal information:

1) Why you are looking for a coach/change in training
2) Why you deserve this opportunity (what motivates you,  financial hardship, etc.)
3) Social media platforms - the athlete chosen will be asked to blog, post (facebook, twitter, etc) about their experiences, training highs and lows, race reports, progress, etc.)
4) Your race schedule, including A race (required!!)
5) Something interesting about yourself!!

Feel free to contact me via personal message on Facebook, comment on this blog, or send an email to knlapan @

I will take inquiries/applications starting today through April 19th and the new plan will begin on Monday, May 5th (or whatever works best for athlete/coaching schedule in May).

I'm really looking forward to helping someone through their 2014 season!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

TeamBSC Scottsdale Training Camp

I'm not even sure where to begin with this post, but I figured I should write it while everything is fresh on my mind, my legs feel the work and my heart is so super happy.  This whole camp idea started as an invite from me to my friend and fellow TeamBSC coach Kelly to come join me for a huge training block in prep for my Ironman CDA build.  I knew I was going to have some time off from training at the end of April pre and post the Boston Marathon so I wanted to bank some training.  Kelly was all in and that's where this all started.

Michelle actually brought up the idea of making this an official training camp.  I thought about it for a few weeks deciding if I wanted this to be something I just focused on for myself, or if the idea of running a training camp was really something I wanted to do.

In all honesty, it didn't take long for me to make the decision.  For years I have planned workouts and crazy training adventures for myself and whomever else I could get to tag along.  This time though, I would be taking on a much greater responsibility and leading the "Camp" as the coach.  Since I started coaching a few athletes this year, I've realized how much I love it.  I love sharing knowledge and pushing others (and myself) to new limits.

While recovering from Ironman AZ and sipping cervesas in Mexico over the hoidays, I started writing out the camp itinerary.  That was the easy part.  We have so many amazing bike routes in Scottsdale, and I also wanted to add in a day trip to do the Epic Mnt Lemmon Climb.  We made the big announcement of the new TeamBSC all over social media and in conjunction announced that Kelly & I would be putting on the early season camp in Scottsdale.  I was overwhelmed with the response and before we knew it out camp was pretty much full with a good mix of locals as well as out of town athletes.

This morning I woke up with such a sense of satisfaction at how everything went.  I met some awesome new people over the weekend and still can't stop smiling knowing how well everything went.  It also goes without saying that everything is a learning experience and we've already been given some great feedback.  My mind is racing thinking about some improvements that could be made to make it even better.  I sent out out this email to all the campers this am, and hopefully it gets across how happy I was with everyones heart and grit that went into all the big training days:

Good morning!

I hope everyone got a good nights' sleep and had some time to reflect on the weekend maddness.  Every one of you should be super proud of what you accomplished at camp - from putting together 4+ solid days and pulling something out of yourself that you might not normally do.  When I put together the schedule for this camp I was thinking BIG.  I personally wanted a big training block in prep for Ironman CDA, but I didn't want it to be just a normal weekend grind.  Getting out of your comfort zone and rising to the challenge is, in my opinion, one of the best things about being an endurance athlete.  There are always new and crazy adventures to be had, and why not just go for it and give it your all.  Climbing a mountain after ~13 hours of training the days leading up to it is not an easy task and everyone just killed it.

TeamBSC training camps are about getting together with some amazing athletes and pushing limits or even finding new ones. This was the first big camp in Scottsdale, and while we will always learn from the experience, I'm really happy and proud of how everything went.  We couldn't have asked for a better group, and just wanted you all to know that you made this weekend exactly what I was hoping it would be.  My mind is already racing with ideas for next year.

Rest up, hydrate, eat your greens and thrive on what you accomplished this weekend.  Feel free to contact me with any questions or comments!

We could not have done this camp or had things run so smoothly without the help of my husband who was SAG extraordinaire, and a few of my amazing local friends!!

As much as I would love to go on and on about every detail about camp, I'm pretty I would lose anyone reading in about 10 minutes so I'll go ahead and do a short bullet overview/picture recap of each day!

Day -1 Thursday PM social run.  We met at my house (camp central) Thursday evening for a nice easy run through one of my favorite neighborhoods.  It was a great way to meet (those that could attend), shake out the legs and also put together SAG stuff for the Epic Friday ride/OWS

Day 1 - Friday ~85mile bike ride (5k of climbing total) and OWS with big 14 mile climb.  This is a BIG first day, but part of the route we were doing gets busy with weekend boat traffic so I felt it would be safer to do on Friday.  The morning started out by surprising everyone with our little secret guest's arrival.  The Queen BSC had a huge case of FOMO and called me Monday night asking if she could come to camp.  Well, DUH, of course!!!  So, she hopped on a plane and got here late Thursday night.  It's amazing how our desire to do something comes into play and you just make things happen!  How cool to have all three TeamBSC coaches together at once!

The ride from my house was about 30 miles of gradual climbing with a regroup before descending down to a lake where we would do an OWS.  We had perfect weather and the group did amazing.  We also had a nice little Rinny & Tim O'Donnell sighting as we were climbing out of the lake.  Totally planned, of course.

We only had a couple hours to clean up and "recover" before an amazing virtual presentation (LOVE TECHNOLOGY) by Jenne Fromm.  It was inspiring, thought provoking and just awesome.  I went and picked up dinner from Pita Jungle and we all sat around my living room taking it all in.

Day 2 - Saturday 50+ mile bike ride including 9 mile hill, 4 mile negative split brick and a 3k pool swim workout.  This day was just fun.  Again, we had awesome weather, figured out the regrouping and riding together logistics and it went flawless.  Below is the only picture I got of EVERYONE.  What a stellar group of athletes!!  Seriously, the talent, experience, heart and grit in this group is just amazing.

I got a chance to chase Michelle and another TeamBSC athlete through the 8 mile section of rollers out in Rio Verde.  It felt awesome to push like that behind two super power cyclists.  When we regrouped and headed up 9 mile hill I was in my element.  I love this climb, and my favorite thing to do is negative split the effort.  I didn't go too crazy because I wanted to set an example with my athletes and all campers of how to execute camp by not burning too many matches on just one given day.  A successful camp is stringing together all days being consistent and happy.  I did however head out on the brick run returning with my last mile at half marathon pace wondering if I had maybe gone a little bit too hard...  But, I found out later in the pool when I hopped over a lane at the end to chase the speedy fish that I indeed have a pretty big fitness bank to pull from.  YES!

Day 3 - Sunday Mount Lemmon Climb.  60 miles round trip with over 6k ft of climbing.  A couple of the local athletes helped transport people and bikes which was a HUGE help, and Shane played SAG extraordinaire again going up and down the mountain making sure we were all ok and taking photos.  We had water, extra food, and layers available (such a bonus I've never experienced during this climb).  I got a little emotional at the end of the descent.  This is such a BIG day and in the end EVERY single athlete from camp made it up the climb as well as DOWN.  Many first timers, including my athlete Jen (aka Sippy) who rode on a poorly fitted bike, was less than comfortable, had been out at a wedding late the night before and made a wrong turn and almost headed up to the summit.  Her face when walking into the cookie cabin was priceless and all I could do was laugh and smile with excitement for her.  She is going to have an amazing day at IMCDA this year!!!

It was a late night for Kelly and I.  As soon as we got home from Tucson, we headed out to mark the run course.  I chose a pretty complicated course and for anyone not local, it would be confusing, yet totally worth it because of the beautiful homes and mountain views.  We finally got home and made dinner around 8:30 pm and after finalizing logistics weren't in bed until after 11pm.

Day 4 - Monday Long run and flush swim.  We had several different running abilities, paces and preferred distances, but in the end it all worked out.  I was the only one that needed to do a 20 miler (hello Boston Marathon!), so I actually did 7 miles from my house and met up with the group in Paradise Valley.  Again, super impressed with everyone today.  Several people did their longest run of the season at just over 15 miles including some climbing.  This is not an easy task after the huge days we had prior and everyone just killed it.  We had Shane on his mountain bike and a good local friend out there making sure we were all safe and on course.  It was awesome!  

Camp officially ended after a flush swim at one of our public pools.  The out of town folks had travel to get back home, but a few of us locals were able to get together for some much deserved cocktails and delicious food.  

Again, HUGE thanks to our sponsors Recovery E21, Planet Sun Hawaii, all campers, Michelle's surprise visit, my amazing sherpa husband and friends June and Theresa for all the help and last but certainly not least, Coach Kelly!  The only thing that would have made this camp better would have been not putting you on a plane to go home today!