Sunday, September 28, 2008

Welcome to the OC!

Race Report- Orange County International Triathlon

today i race the Orange County International Triathlon in the heart of the OC. the 1500M swim, 40kbike and 10k run started and ended at lake Misssion Viejo- this was exciting! Being on the ocean and all, we rarely get to have a good lake swim, so not dealing with surf entry, chop and salt water was a big treat.
Since it's my first season, I didn't want to burn out and end with ironman, or even another half. So, the OC Triathlon was perfect! AND it was a USAT (USA Triathlon) sanctioned race and most of ours out here aren't (although i'm sure this sanctioning is pretty irrelevant).
anyhow, i didn't have a whole crew of friends and teammates from breakaway training...which made the warm-up/post race so different! i really missed having all my buddies out there cheering eachother on. BUT, i did have my #1 fan, james...and the team work was in full effect....and even though I was there to race, we did get to have a little mini vacation in the O.C.(even if i did make him eat at Wahoos fish tacos for classy!)

we rolled in saturday afternoon and brought the crap up to the room and hit the race expo (which was in the hotel....) rolling your bike around with a race wheel on is SO obnoxious... its all "click click click click look at me i think i'm fast click click click click.."...i was kind of embarassed. it's like when you're wearing heels in a quiet building and the sound of your clicking echoes and feels uncomfortable loud. or like chewing carrots in a movie and everyone can hear you chomp. wait, i am probably the onle one rude enough to bring carrotts to the movie.
rolling in "incognito" :


after getting everything i needed , we headed to Transition 2. The race had 2 transition sites, so i had to drop all my run gear off the night before. this included my race belt, which i had to try on to make sure it was as minimally annoying as possible. james and i agreed that "192" seemed


after getting situated, we headed back to the hotel for some relaxing, an early dinner and a movie in the room...."Forgetting Sarah Marshall"....HILARIOUS...(but very far from PG so watch out)..

race morning came at 4:30 and james was on it with coffee and "computer time" (james' required morning "mission" ....but i'm a girl, so i don't poo....right?)

left for the race a little after 5, this is me waking up the building with my sweet aero wheel click-fest (actually, these are james' wheels but i have permanently borrowed them)

Got to the race quickly (it was only two miles. we saw a couple dumb ninjas charging it on their bikes with NO smart.) after getting transition set up, i set off for my warm-up jog (20 minutes with some good music- easy jogging and 4X20 second pick ups to race pace)...i KNEW it was going to be a great day because a great song came on the ipod, TEN cottontail bunnies ran right across my path (really!), and all of a sudden i had to GO to the bathroom and an open, well-lit, clean bathroom with stalls and mirrors appeared in front of me! this was my lucky day! no 10 minute line for a dark port-o-potty mission for me!

after the run, i headed down to the water. the weather was nice, but the FOG was intense. you couldn't even see the lake! i talked with james a few minutes (procrasinating a real swim warm up) and told him a few times we could just go home, i didn't need to race and i was scared of the hills. i thought i wasn't prepared becuase i hadn't been doing much swimming or biking this month or last- maintenance only. he told me he didn't wake up at 4:30 to watch me warm-up. i gave him the stink eye and zipped up:

so i got in the water and it was actually nice! i thought i would get lost in the fog, but tried to remember we were all in the same boat. unless I was the one that drowned under the boat...


the swim was ALL about the FOG (in more ways than one!)

they delayed the start a bit becuase of the fog. can you see the buoys? ME EITHER!

my wave was huge... all women under 39 and relays so maybe 150?....

and we're off!

the swim was actually a highlight. i'm not sure i've ever said that. but, i started out slow, and got on F.O.G.s (Fat Old Guys) feet. he lined up near the front with no westuit, AND since he was not a woman, he had to be in a relay, which means this is his strong leg, right? he looked just like the many sandbagger F.O.G.s at masters that drop me like its hot.. so, i thought, "F.O.G.+no wetsuit+relay= perfect draft!" WRONG! THIS F.O.G. blew up after 100 yards..and i was in no man's land for a few hundred yards. then, i did something BIG for me. i saw a pack of 4/5 swimmers about 10-15 yrds ahead, put my head down and CHARGED IT until i caught up with them. i bridged the gap- i had no idea i actually had more than one swim gear! so, i caught my pack and hung petered out to me and my "navigator" and i followed her the entire rest of the way. she got me through all sorts of traffic from earlier waved and home to shore safely. THANK YOU, NAVIGATOR!! (i kept chanting, "follow..the...navigator...don' wimp..."

out of the water, up to transition, and on the bike!

wow. holy hills. i haven't been in a race NEARLY this hilly. there were more hills in those 25miles than there were in 56 miles at vineman 70.3...everything, long climbs, short climbs...grind it OUT! the day was completely exceptional weather-wise and i was enjoying it. i had no idea where i was in my age group and never really knew... a couple miles before the bike turnaround, you do this huge loopy thing which makes it impossible to ever glimpse any competition 5-10 minutes ahead or behind of you just GO! i got passed by two girls from my wave on the bike. and passed a few myself. i ended the bike leg with one foot in a bike shoe and one bare traffic hazard at the dismount line (sorry fellow racers!)

off the bike, time to RUN!

i hit T2 and threw on the run shoes. i had been waiting for this! i heard the run course was very tough, but i laughed during the first mile or so...this was tough? yeah right!

okay, i spoke WAY too soon. all of a sudden we were in xterra land with big big climbs, dirt, deep mulch, carnage walking everywhere! i knew i was slowing a lot, but it seemed like others were slowing more. I passed about 4 women from my wave (including the 2 that had passed me on the bike) and kept trucking along. no blazing pace, just kept it rolling. after the nastiness, the last 1.5 miles is out and back past the finish and a "hot corner" soon as i came out, i hear this from james:

if you couldn't play the video (or have better things to do i'm sure!), james tells me i am 30 seconds back from the leader. at this point, i had never even seen this girl in the race!

i thought it was over. my stomach was hurting badly and i was tired! but i kept pusing and closed the gap. i ended up passing her and getting ahead another 30 seconds by the finish!

i crossed in 2:24. i thought this was just an okay time. then i learned that only one dude (the male winner who is the european ITU champ and on his way to race pro at kona) broke two hours (1:58XX) and his competition was 10 minutes behind...

when we checked the results...i had won my age group, and was the overall winner as well! There was one pro/elite woman and i had finished more than three minutes ahead of her..

turns out i picked a GREAT race to do well at...these guys had an actual podium, real trohpies and prizes and things! I got nice sunglasses and some fun tri gear too...all size Mens XL. perfect :)

needless to say, this was a fantastic experience. i went in with few expectations and came out with the best race of my season. i was especially happy to have enjoyed all three portions of the race i just need to get rid of the "i'd rather be spectating" overpowering feelings i get before the start.

of course this all made me think how much i rely on and value all the people who have helped me out. without my fabulous bike and the coaching and teamwork and comraderie from breakaway training, i wouldn't be half as fast or half half as much fun at races. this one was fun, but where were all my friends? can't wait to race in san diego next weekend!!!

i also have new run confidence and speed from my run master, tim luchinske. lucho knows what i need to be fast and healthy...going into the race today i had complete confidence (and was STOKED) for the run. that alone is awesome. i'm excited to see the splits! i think "bob" was with me the whole way.

i also am lucky to have gotten the support of ZOOT over the season. they keep me in good clean running shoes, a fancy wetsuit and all geared out.

and of course, my #1 sponsor....james...

AND he only charged me a dollar for each digital image i used in this posting. thanks for the athlete discount!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

yes, i am aware that i am crazy.

this past weekend, i found out what normal people do on sundays...see, i twisted my ankle on friday and it was kind of swollen and things and a full day off was "recommended". by recommended i mean mandated while i cried (yes, really) about "wasting" a sunday . i tried to negotiate a swim and a ride, just no running, but lucho was not having my bs. he told me and my crazy face to chill out. i swear, james just wanted me to get a coach because of these kinds of days becuase it was officially out of his hands...he LOVED it that i had to listen to someone else and shut up. and it's not even that i mind days off- i welcome them during the week, its just hard when the week is SO PACKED to have empty space that could go to such good use!

i even asked lucho, "what do normal people without kids do on sunday?"
he said, "sleep, drink a beer, watch football, watch movies.."

hmmm....i did sleep in (until 7:25! that was HUGE!). but, i don't really do movies (too much ADD and i have some weird movie narcolepsy), and football=not my thing. in our house, i only really like "watching football" because james and i have a deal that when he watches sports, i get computer amnesty! i love computer time! like right now, the chargers are on Monday Night Football, so i can blog and email and geek out all night long without james giving me a hard time and telling me i like my computer more than i like him...and it's not that i do, its just relaxing to me and i don't like much about tv so its my mindless activity of choice.
like tonight. i got back from work about 5. got on the trainer at 5:30....did a tough 90 minute workout w/ plenty o' intervals, took a shower, made dinner and now i'm sitting at 8pm for the first time not working or working out since 5am (masters swimming this morning and i ventured into new lane territory and swam with some faster kids!)...and bedtime is in one hour...
and if i may continue my digression (i MAY! it is my blog after all) is the trainer workout i just did. my awesome boyfriend put it together just for me with my upcoming race this weekend in mind and wrote it on the whiteboard above the tv/trainer set up for me all ready to go! i LOVE him.

okay, back to sunday...digression OVER! so...on sunday, I had to fill it up with all the empty space...with ankle "friendly"'s how i did it:
  • got a manicure/pedicure (which is not as fun when you have to listen to the vietnamese ladies talk (oh, i KNOW you were talking about me...the pointing gave it away) about how bad your toenails are (look, a black one AND a missing one!)

  • did 3 loads of laundry and ACTUALLY FOLDED IT ON THE SAME DAY (that's a first i think. i am minorly domestically disabled)...
  • caught up on my journal reading for work/school
  • did a little core and arms session in our gym dungeon (i sat on the ball when i did the arm stuff...really!)
  • got the car pretty and shiny! and the wash guys found 2 pairs of my "missing" sunglasses!
  • made 3 batches of granola for james while he was at his race (where he did awesome!)- his favorite pre-ride snack....two new flavors...the best one was chocolate cranberry almond one made with Navitas Natural cocoa powder (some stuff james bought after reading his man crush simon whitfield's blog and he had lots of Navitas stuff)...for this granola, i also used pureed cottage cheese as the "liquid base" with just a little honey...this added lots of protein and reduced fat and sugar as most recipes go for some kind of brown sugar/veggie oil/honey/maple syrup time i want to add a little molasses. i think that would be good.

  • i also went grocery shopping and made a new ceviche recipe....pretty much mexican style ceviche with shrimp and red snapper....this stuff is good - we eat it in butter lettuce cups..

so after my long day of good work for the J&B team, james came home from his race pleasantly surprised...and then quickly said to ignore him when i wake up in the middle of the night and he is twisting my other ankle...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

oh, it's ON!!!!

i was going to wait to bring on the HEAT until a few weeks before the vegas marathon,
but i have been CHALLENGED by a Canadian of all people!!!!

click HERE right now to see what I mean!!! ok, if you didn't click it, you HAVE TO!!! THIS GUY thinks he can take me??? WHAT EVER! I'll show him where he can shove his maple leaf!!! I am going to OWN him. So what if he's done a bunch of marathon's? it's OVER, old man!

well, Fat Dad, i think we're all going to have to come up with a friendly wager...a straight up bet? maybe bet on finishing times? any creative ideas? i know a BUNCH of people doing this race now and i think it would be fun to get people in on it. not sure what the loser will have to do, but it might have something to do with Celine IS vegas after all.

other than that...all quiet here on the western front....nothing new becuase i'm too busy TRAINING MY FACE OFF, FATDAD!!!

no, but for real...over 50 miles running in each of the past two weeks while fitting in the bike and swim...sunday's long run was a 19miler on trails with the last 8 miles all under 7:30....and ran a 12 miler at the track last night....i think i bonked on the way home. it was pretty cool. i came in and started talking like a crazy old lady or one of our "friends" on the street corner pointing at invisible things....james thinks "runner" beth is a wack-job...

Sunday, September 7, 2008

dating, hydrating, and recovering...

going on a date!

you know its been a while since you've gone on a real date or to a party when this happens...

so james made reservations saturday night at a funrestaurant and i tried to look cute- meaning i put on heels and actually dried my hair.

as we sat there over a glass of wine, i got a panic-y look on my face for a second and james asked what happened?...well, i felt something hard pressing against my ribs and thought...."oh no, i wore my heartrate monitor to dinner by accident! i'm such an idiot!"...and then i i just have on a "real" bra for once" with wires and all. that constricting feeling is the feeling of "bra" that many women feel every day! (typically i don't go bra-less or anything. i just wear these little comfortable nothing things that are more appropriate with t-shirts and such, or even more often (and sexy ha ha:)) a sweaty sports bra...

week 2 (13 weeks out) of marathon training while triathlon training went great. more tough runs and a broken 17-miler today. this was the first time i have ever run based on heart rate and it was awesome! i was surprised at the paces i could hold without blowing up :). the only thing i noticed was how incredibly poorly i can hold heartrate going up even the smallest of hills...need to work on this for sure...

running 17 miles solo is interesting. i wish i could have had some buddies to run with, but it sounds kind of awkward to ask someone if they want to come and run at MY heartrate 160-165 for 3 miles, ease off for a few miles, speed back up again, and end with 7:10 pace for two miles.....etc etc... yeah. so i ran with me and my ipod shuffle and a freaking torture device that holds a water bottle. the run went really well and all was said and done in 2hours and 9 minutes.
this was my first attempt at working with (or against!) some kind of water belt and it was NOT cool. i strapped it to my waist, hovering the water holder on my butt like you are supposed to, but the added 2 lbs to my bottom were NOT welcome. you see, for a small-ish girl, i am soooo not lacking in the butt department and i was not interested in anything else dragging me down those (small) hills. so after a couple miles, i switched the thing to the front so it loooked like one of those snuggly baby carriers, except it was a water bottle and i looked like a tool. which was a bummer becuase i had on a really cute zoot outfit (a cute outfit is ALWAYS half the motivation to leave the house and get your run on. AND a bad running outfit can ruin my runs. seriously..whatever works, right? speaking of, did you see rachel & katherine's cute matching bike jerseys? i want one!) . so the papoose was a major disappoinment.

seriously. i need some help. not out of style concerns, but i can't be pregnant with the hydration pack for the next 3 months. you think i'll be better off with a regular fuel belt? the thought of a camelback does not excite me either- hello sweatback! think a regular fuel belt would do the trick? never tried one of those either...this hydration thing is TOTALLY ruining my look. nothin says "running carefree easy breezy" like a tool i mean fuel belt!

post run, the running coach had instructed me to "eat 20g of carbohydrate every 15 minutes for the first hour after the run". he also says that liquids are most readily absorbed at that time. hmmmm....what liquid-ish food do i know and love that has plenty of carbs...and calcium, and even protein and can be easily portioned into little servings???? FROZEN YOGURT of course!'s my recovery lounge today...96g of fro yo= 20grams of carbs and 4grams of protein...i even weighed the little cups!

other than that, i booked our hotel for vegas!!!!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

ah wus runn-ang

my assistant coach, james, came out to the track on tuesday to keep me honest :)

he has never run a marathon and is excited to watch me like a little experiment a-brewing.....he even posts my workouts on the fridge and highlights "important" details...especially those about hydration since i am water-phobic. (just kidding, lucho, i swear, i drink tons of the stuff...drink it till i drown)....

while i like to think he was enthralled by my running in circles... i think he wasmore interested in the practice at one of the top schools in CA. nothing like a little high school football...

and he took some videos....feel free to tell me what i am doing wrong. bring it! i need all the help i can get.

this one is my 3rd 400m in a 200, 200, 400 (repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat....)

looks slow, but if i was running whole miles it would be about 5:40 pace...good thing i was only running quarters!

and 400 #4....8.5 miles into it....TIRED!!!!

Monday, September 1, 2008

call it a comeback (14 weeks out)

unrelated to labor day...

the marathon is the reason i started the whole running thing in january 2007. a simple new years resolution for a girl sick of the bar scene, wanting an excuse to stay home on friday night :)...and to meet some new people ( talk their ears off) early saturday morning for a couple hours. before jan 2007, i jogged up to 5 miles up to maybe 3 times a week for 3 years to get in (mildly acceptable) shape after 4 years of debaucherous (is that a word?) behavior in college. in high school, i played field hockey and lacrosee. they involved running, but not running for the sake of it. like no forest gump runn-ang.

anyhow, once i started and resolved to do it, the marathon training (for June 2007) became an important goal and i thought about it constantly. i followed the plan for our San Diego Track Club training group but added some miles here and there (and everywhere :) ). i overtrained quickly and ended up with a femoral stress fracture and a pair of crutches for 5 months...which evolved into a year ad a half of other injuries (broken arm) and luckily landed in the lap of triathlon- everything DOES happen for a reason -even broken bones. i wouldn't trade those 5 months not walking for anything. for real. my life is different and better becuase of it.

i decided to give the triathlons a real "go" in 2008 as my leg still was needing strength, and the "deal" with james and my family was to see if i could make it through vineman 70.3 injury free and then i could decide to do whatever i wanted....good deal.

guess what "whatever i want" is?....

redemption time! in sin city no less.
I am going to run the Las Vegas marathon on December 7, 2008. and i'm going to run it right. unlike 2007, i now have almost a full year of consistent run, bike, swim training in my legs to make me stronger. my muscles, tendons and BONES are much more used to the kind of beating they will be put through. i am also much more conscious of how my body feels, how to eat, and how to recover!

and most importantly, i have the guidance of LUCHO THE coach who is going to help me reach my goals. breakaway training is still supporting my triathlon training and i am so lucky for that becuase of all the great group workouts and triathlon expertise. now having that, combined with the mind of the man who will run sub 2:30 at the same marathon i am entering is awesome. i'm so lucky that lucho has agreed to help me out and deal with me... (i asked him the other day if diet coke counted in my "rehydration" strategies...(and HE ANSWERED!)). i especially love that i can pretend that he is travelling all the way to my "A" race just for i better race well!

so this past week was week one (14 weeks out) of my training for Vegas. i told Lucho to bring it and he said, "its being broughten". well, gradually :).
my first week was a build in volume and frequency (i'm a girl who has only been running around 25 miles/week) and a test! i love a test. i love to show my teacher that i can do good on the test! i am such a nerd, 28, STILL in grad school, so CLERARLY i love a test. i do NOT love waking up at 4:30 for the test, but that's the life of a working girl :)
my test was a "marathon pace vs. heartrate" one on the track and included 4 miles at 7:10 pace, no faster, no slower (okay, it was supposed to be 7:15-7:20 pace but my average was 7:10 so i told lucho my test was perfect for 7:10 pace so that should be my new marathon pace :) )

heres how the workout went.

3 miles easy jogging warm up into
Mile 4: 7:05/ heartrate 154
Mile 5: 7:14/155
Mile 6: 7:05/158
Mile 7: 7:14/159
1+ mile cool down easy jogging.

the test was fun and running on the track feels like running on air compared to the slow trails i usually run. i thought it would be harder to reach the paces than it was, so that was good! hopefully i'll see some improvement over the coming weeks.

my first week of marathon training (combined with regular bike & swim training (15 hrs for all 3 sports) coincidely nicely :( with my first full week at work.... let's just say i've been burining the glycogen at both ends. i need to make sure i am getting enough sleep. the workouts are manageable and my body feels fine, bit i need to find a way to sleep more. i function quite poorly on less than 7 hours so i need to figure this one out.

other than that...happy labor day!