Sunday, October 26, 2008

congratulations james!


in the islands.....
after 11 months of work, james achieved one of his dreams and won his age group at the xterra world championships in Maui today. He also managed 2nd amateur overall, edged out by a 23-year old frenchie. i had a blast cheering from live feed on my computer back in cali and am very proud of his accomplishment. i can't wait to hug the champ!

okay, i know this is blurry (my iphone sucks with pictures and my real camera battery charger is lost)...but if you look close at the text updates on the right- the bottom says "top amateurs" and mentions James in 2nd on the run.

it's probably pretty clear if you have ever read his blog, but james is razor focused, incredibly hardworking and consistent as they come. this alone is quite good, but what really amazes me, his roommate, is that he sleeps far less than 8 hours, is usually in a good mood, cooks for two, cleans for 4 (i count for 3), excels in his full time geek job, and drinks at least a half bottle of red wine every night. [by the way, i always offer to cook, etc, but he gets home first and likes to eat early. i promise i am no deadbeat girlfriend. besides, if you remember , he thinks i may poison his food with trans fats or HFCS].

back on the mainland...
i had qute a little training fest this weekend all alone. the plan was to go to LA to see the pregnant besty and run a trail half marathon. the night before the race was cancelled due to fire danger. THINK FAST, little runner! I remembered my San Diego Track Club cross country team had a 4-miler and i thought that would be the best option. so i made it down to the race. did a 25 minute warm up and ran my butt off! cross country is hard. i ran 4 miles in 23:15. WOW! 5:48 miles! yeah, tright! i talked to the garmin-ified and found out it the course was just 3.75miles, not four....well, 6:12- that's still fast for me on trails (on anywhere)....the race was a blast and i reconnected with some friends i hadn't seen in a while including shannon and christine... i also met charisa who just did KONA and beat me in the race by 10 seconds. AND i met roo, who had a bum foot and couldn't race. running races are crazy. first of all, there are a lot more fast runners at running races than triathlons. 2nd, this particular start was just as brutal as any triathlon swim i have been in, a TOTAL stampede. i went out way too fast to try to beat the crowd to the singletrack. fun times. i like that XC stuff.

today i got a hall pass from a structured long road run and went on a big old trail run in daley ranch

i had a fun group with me for part of the run and finished solo. it was hilly, sandy, hot, slow, hard, and FUN!

if anyone needs salt for their margarita, please feel free to roll your glass on me after a long run.

when the run was over, i came home and added some icing on the pain cake (sorry, that was lame) by riding the trainer for an hour fifteen and doing core work while hooting and hollering at my computer for the xterra champs.

its been a big day. time to go spike my blood glucose at an inopportune hour with some frozen yogurt right before bedtime. i will get james' favorite flavor (peanut butter) and eat it in his honor, aren't i thoughtful?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Rocktober continues

i would tell you about the minor ankle injury that took me out for a day or so, but i really don't want to be showing any sort of weakness to the "competition" at this late stage in the game. well, that, and it would be boring.

SO, let's talk about how i'm fine now and i'm going to see one of my best friends this weekend up in LA...she is 9 months preggers so it will be a real treat. we are going to have some dinner and an early bedtime because that is my normal friday night bedtime and she is 9 months pregnant so we are finally on the same level.
then i'm going to wake up for a very fun xterra trail race. last year, i ran a bunch of the races and won my age group for the series. the races were a blast- totally home grown and mellow crowd, but you never know who would show up from heather fuhr, to sam mcglone, to conrad stoltz...

so, this saturday i'm racing the Boney Mountain 21k....i told my coach that it's a little hilly...and it DOES have "mountain" in the race name, so i wasn't hiding anything...



so it's not an ideal "race prep" race for my marathon considering the "terrain", but i am really excited to just go out and have fun and a good race experience. also, i'm not complaining that w. the warm up and cool down, it will subsititute for a solo long run. i am sneaky.

the real tune-up road race will be the silver strand half marathon on 11/16.
at the start of '2008, i wrote down just three goals . normally i don't do this kind of thing, but i got a training peaks account and they ask you to do it. these are mine:

1) stay injury free and healthy,
2) run a half marathon under 1:30 and a 10k under 40:00,
3) complete a half ironman and olympic distance triathlon.

we're not going to discuss #1 yet because its (happily) still in good progress. #3 happened- check! as for #2, a marathon wasn't on the list because honestly, at the beginning of the year, there was a big "if" on what the year would hold considering a broken 2007. I tried to accomplish #2 at Carlsbad Half Marathon in January (1:30:13- d'oh!) and the only road 10k I ran this year (St. Patty's Day) was exactly 40:00...so this is a goal in progress. I'm confident I can run under 1:30 in 3 weeks. In January, I trained for the Carlsbad half on a just healed femur, running no more than 4 times per week. I had also never run a half marathon, so I had some pacing "challenges". I'm pretty sure I'm more prepared this time.

other than that, my chicken is heading to Maui and i am really bummed to not be there. next year, we are planning better for sure. it's just not right! i should be there! go JAMES!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

not so fast.

james has lost his mind. he is trying to use the power of blog to get me to do ironman, but not so fast! i see right through him. seriously, i think he is just trying to keep me off a mountain bike because he knows i will TEAR HIM UP. i eat skinny chickens like him for breakfast.

okay, so i don't actually HAVE a mountain bike yet, but i'm saving my little grad school pennies...to pay back student loans....that i will use to buy a mountain bike....for my offroad education.


so no ironman yet....but there is still a lot of 2008 left to decide what will come in 2009. never say never, i guess.

Monday, October 13, 2008

first things first. congratulations to all my real and i wish they were real blog friends who raced at the Ironman World Championships in Kona this past weekend. Paul, Miss Ross (my blog crush- James likes to joke that I want to make out with Rachel Ross, but I told him I don't kiss until I've known someone on the internet at least a year), Maggs, Pat Baldwin, Caroline G., Katya all put on some inspiring performances. JUST as inspiring (and often more amusing) was the awesome race support from the likes of Kerrie, Bree and all the friends and family out there...one day i want to be a part of that celebration!

and another HUGE thing is that Martha, my best-y from college is running her first marathon this weekend in San Francisco! Now, both of my best friends (and derelict counterparts!) from the good ole days will have run 26.2 before me! awesome. i am so proud of her for what she is about to accomplish AND she just bought her first road bike...you know what THAT means. now, all she needs is a blog :). anyhow, GO MARTHA! i sent her "the stick" as a little pre-race surprise last week- i think she's getting into it!

back in cali- i ran 73+ miles last week and did just 4 hours of biking/swimming. that's a LOT of running miles for me. I had a pretty big weekend with a 50 mile hilly windy bike ride with a 6+ mile brick run on saturday and a 3 hour run on sunday. holy crap. i had never run more than 19 miles in one session....the basic prescription for the run was "no paces faster than 8:00"...and i think i did pretty good! i started out a little fast, but had to get the blood flowing. when i finished 23 miles, my garmin said avg. pace was EXACTLY 8:00....here is the graph.
you can see how good i did sticking to the plan until mile 22 (when i decided to bandit run at what i thought was race pace- i was too curious as to what that would feel like (but ended up 15 seconds faster than my race pace- guess i need to "dial it in" a touch more :) ). I was stoked about the run because the pace felt so simple. my avg HR for the run was 143. My heartrate only touched even close to 160 in that last fast mile. What DID NOT feel easy was the pounding pounding pounding (which I'm sure was coach Mr. Miyagi's point of the run anyway). note to self: I found during the run, that I have a major issue with mental pictures of bone degeneration and what could potentially be physiologically occurring in the lower limbs. by the end, i was apologizing with each step to my legs. but my top half felt great!

The best part of my long run was that I didn't have do it alone! I planned a huge loop around mission bay and Mary, training for IMAZ, was the best running partner you could ask for and accompanied me for the middle 17 miles.
We ran a solid pace and she never gave up. I saw the ironman fire in her! Mary is a college swimmer who KILLS it on the bike too. She thinks running is her weakness, but Sunday proved it is not!

Post run, I got home and within ten minutes was out the door (salt crust and all) with james to the gym for a core session- we do a good 15 minute sequence that alternates planks and strength moves and stability ball. It's fun time we get to spend together- I think people think we train together but that is oh so not true. Sometimes we wave to eachother at masters , but we don't even drive there in the same car. So the core sessions are quality, and since we are in a fixed location, he can't drop me, so that's cool. Then we hit the sauna and try to make eachother crack. I've been focusing on core lately becuase I think when you get tired in a race, you need to have confidence that you can "call on your core" to pull you through (or confidence in ANYTHING that you believe will pull you through)...seriously. I know that sounds lame, but it's exactly how i think when i get tired or want to fall apart or lose form...CALL ON YOUR CORE! Oh, AND only james knows this, but the night before a race, I almost always do a really short (probably useless) "core activation :) " routine- purely for mental reasons. yep, i am pretty pretty cool.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

triathlon season 1 ...CHECK!.

first, a huge congratulations to james....my little skinny chicken fought in the cold (and altitude!) and was 2nd in his AG at the Xterra National Championships in Lake Tahoe, CA. this race has historically been his WORST, so this year he decided to suck it up and that he did! i am so proud of his improvement and i know this is a good indicator of what he is capable of at the Xterra World Championships in Maui, HI later this month. Everything that Tahoe is, Maui isn't...which makes it a perfect race for james. Tahoe is altitude, cold, long descents on the bike and a flat run...Maui is heat, hills on the bike, and hills on the run. james territory. too bad i won't be there. actually a touchy subject becuase i want to go BADLY, but spending $1000 on a plane ticket for 3 days in Maui is just a little (lot) much right now. sucks since he is such a great supporter at my races, but mine we DRIVE to.


today i wrapped up the triathlon season with mission bay triathlon. i did a little research and this great article on the history of triathlon came up...super simple read..from mission bay to hawaii to ITU. the race is one of our bigest local sand diego events, selling out months ahead at 2000 people. my AG was the biggest i've seen at any race- 120 age 25-29! my wave started at 6:45 am. seriously? come on, that had to violate some kind of child labor laws as there were tons of high school volunteers out there.


the pre-race was a bit of a cluster since my tri caddy was off racing on his own.... i found that pumping disc wheels (with something called a crack pipe- really) is impossible with one person and what was even more difficult is that i don't know how to use the coffee maker or the alarm clock! now, before you go thinking i am some helpless little thing...i SWEAR he does not let me touch these things. there are certain things that Beth is not allowed to do. they include: set the alarm, make james lunch without 100%supervision, make coffee for the morning (i'm allowed at other times), put away the groceries (we have two fridges and one is for some stuff, one is for other stuff and the appropriate placement is VERY important), grill the meat/fish/chicken, make him water bottles....so it pretty much sounds like he thinks i will poison him or cause him to oversleep. i think he's afraid i will put butter in his water bottles and make him fat.


i'm not complaining. these are all jobs i am very happy that i don't have to think about and i can't tell you how much i appreciate hot coffee every morning. and i'm not calling him a control freak or anything, you can make your own call on that one.


oh look at me, start out all nice "great race, babe!" then i go and throw him under the bus. oh well. sorry, babe. just typing. i told the fingers to stop but they wouldn't. (they don't like you!)


anyhow. i made it to my race (james was surprised) on time for a warm up(even more surprised he was)...

no big race report here. just basics

swim (1/2 K): swam alone behind the front pack. i did kind of feel like a real swimmer (thank you coleen and hux, my masters coaches!) i was definitely more in the faster than slower bunch. and the swim was long for sure.


ride (15k): rode fine, maybe a little flat, nothing blazing. lots of quick turns and puddles. i chose life over aero. good call. there were some spills.

run (5k): ran okay. i think i ran 19-something for the 5k. word on the tri street was this was a tad long too, but who knows.

on mile 2 of the run, i passed a really fast swimmer girl i see at Encinitas YMCA masters swimming (she swims in the fast lanes and didn't know me becuase i'm in the depths of lane 5..i had also met her once on a bike ride, but i was "off the back" as they say so i saw more of her than she did of me). anywho..., i was glad to pass Molly because i know how strong she is.

but even better, we made friends at the finish- Molly is awesome, i can't WAIT to train with her! we ran a 30 minute cool down together and we have a lot in common. me and Molly with our silver and bronze:

i ended up 2nd AG/120, 8th overall female(w/ elites)/800 or so.
w/ coach felipe! team breakaway was in full effect!

the course was such that you never once loop by your competition, so i was clueless as to the standings until they were posted. i talked with the girl who won my AG. this was her first triathlon. granted, she broke swim records in college and has run marathons (oh, yeah, i googled her. so what?), it was still her first triathlon. how annoying for her to be good right off the bat. how could i let her beat me? i said this to james. he said, "how do you think people feel about you when you come in ahead and they've been doing it for years?". he's right. good lesson learned. i am officially stopping the "who? me? oh, i just started running last year! i broke all my bones and look at me! this is so fun!" god, that is so obnoxious.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

ROCKtober 1st

So, I've been junking up the marathon training with triathlons. Last weekend was the OC Tri, and this weekend i have my last race, Mission Bay Triathlon (the first ever triathlon in '78 or something!)....you know what the run master does to little girls who try to junk up the weekend training? THIS:

Wednesday, October 1st
"Special Block" day....
OOOH! Fun! Something special!
well, "Special Block" goes like this:

"AM) Progression run. WU) 3 miles of easy jogging.. relax and slowly build as you loosen. Then run 3 miles at ~7:30-7:45 pace. Then run 5 miles in 35:00-35:50 (7:00-7:10 pace)"

well, i can do that! THEN i see this:
"PM) EXACT same session"
okay, this just got interesting. first of all, i have work. second of all, i've never run more than 19 miles in a day, and this is 22...in the middle of the week! but, honestly, i was kind of excited. i've always been into the "idea" of the double run...lucho warned me i may feel like crap starting #2... but it was actually the opposite! i was ready to go! after run #1, i put on my compression tights under my work clothes (and it was 100 degrees out- God bless A/C!), ate my favorite cereals and went to work. because i'm still paranoid about injury, i decided to do run#2 on the treadmill instead of the road. i put it on .5% incline becuase i was too much of a p*ssy to do 1% like you are supposed to. i thought i might crumble under the pressure and monotony of the tready, but it was the opposite! i felt great and it was fun. i love being able to control my pace and stay efficient on the treadmill- i really surge and slow a lot on the road b/c i'm not too dialed in to my paces yet.....and even better i was at the gym to hit the sauna before i went home.
by the way- i wore my heart rate monitor in the sauna and it went from 85 to 150 in just 15 minutes. crazy...

other than that, there were a couple fun articles from the OC Tri with pictures and "coverage" (if you call the local online news that took quotes from my blog "coverage") of the race. who cares, made my parents proud. they think i'm big time now. and i was just glad they didn't quote me talking smack on fat old guys.
http://missionviejodispatch.com/2008/09/29/mv-triathlon-course-proves-tough-frenchman-wins-overall-sds-gerdes-tops-women/

and

www.amateurendurance.com

the splits from the OC Triathlon were also posted. somehow i had the fastest bike split in my AG(huh? i know people say its all about the "engine", but i've got to admit- i certainly never had the fastest bike split on my Orbea road bike...thanks Hi-Tech Bikes and team Breakaway!) My run was best of all women by a couple minutes i think...i had the 20th run of about 700 including the men, so i was really excited to see that i am making progress and am getting relatively faster!

alright. thanks for listening to me talk about myself. it's BEDTIME! Happy Rocktober to all!

actually, not about me....mr. james is headed to tahoe this weekend for Xterra nationals. i can't go becuase of racing conflicts, but i wish more than anything that i could be there. i LOVE watching his races and this one is really important to him. i can't wait to hear about how he crushes it....i know he will.