Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Coming home...

Nothing beats coming home. With the craziness and destruction of Hurricane Sandy on the east coast, I felt even luckier to return (on time) home to north county San Diego. Too bad my poor Dad wasn't so lucky and his flight back to Philadelphia was (obviously) cancelled. He got to enjoy a little bit more of Austin, but I wish I could have stayed with him.

I flew home Monday afternoon in time for a sunset spin on the coast to clear my mind and my legs.

home


Tuesday morning I woke up at 5am to head to masters swim. I was feeling kind of lame & unmotivated  since I swam so poorly in Austin, but my favorite lane mates (John & Kiernan) were wasting time waiting on deck and made me feel not so bad about myself. They're not triathletes, John & Kiernan are swimmer swimmers. Very good ones. They only swim in lane 2 (1:20) base (as opposed to 1:15 base lane 1) because they are lazy and just trying to keep in shape and they like to sit on the wall for 20 seconds every interval.. Haha...I hope they read this. Anyway, I'm the opposite and I only swim in lane 2 because I'm desperately trying to fake that I'm a fast swimmer and hope it rubs off one day. When, truth be told, I belong in lane 3. But, so long as I'm eeking out the intervals and they let me stay, I'll stay. No matter if John & Kiernan are hanging out on the wall for 45 seconds after a 400, I'll get there in time for the next sendoff. Anyway, they (and everyone else at the pool) are one of the reasons I love coming home. Not because they congratulate me on my races (even when there is not so much to congratulate), but because day in and day out they are there and they don't seem to mind that I am just always hanging off the back and squeaking by. When the interval is tight, they let me start right on their toes so I kind of get a "free" 25 until we flip turn and they get oh, about 10 yards on me in 5 seconds since my flip turns look like what happens when you get tumbled by a wave in the ocean. Anyway, I don't think they (or coach Patty or coach Hux or Jane or Susan or any of the other people I love to see at the pool) realize how much they help me just keep swimming along and dragging my butt out of bed every day.

Anyhow, this was all just to say that its not all about the sunshine and sunsets around here. There is so much more that always reminds me that there's no place like home.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Austin 70.3

Let's do this a little differently.


Results: 10th of 20 pro women. 4 hours 34 minutes. Results here

The Good
  • My nutrition was perfect! Bike: 3/4 bottle Skratchlabs (60 cal) [Just drank water otherwise], one Bonk Breaker (250), One pack of Gu Chomps (190), 2 Gus (200) (I go for 1 Jet Blackberry, 1 Peanut Butter...like a PB&J ;) ...Total: About 700 calories. Run: 1/2 pack Gu Chomps (90), 1 Gu (100), some coke... Maybe 400 calories. So basically, I load up on the bike and then ease up on the run
  • I ran a 1:22 which was the fastest female run split of the day. The run is good to go. I feel like I have my run training dialed and it's not too complicated or crazy. Just maintain until IM Cozumel. 
  • Me & Princess Jess at the finish (you finish inside a Rodeo barn which is interesting! ) 
  • Since the pro field was stacked, this meant seeing A LOT more friends out on the run course. I loved cheering for some of my favorite girls: Beth Shutt, Jess Smith, Charisa Wernick, Rachel Challis, Elizabeth Lyles... 
  • And Keith Butsko, my go to training partner at home cruised in for a cool 4:04 and 7th overall/top amateur. It's pro card time, Butsko!
Keith & I at the finish. Hey Keith- I think you owe your run coach a beer . 
  • Lap 1 of the run I ran "ok". Lap 2, Ian Mikelson & Thomas Gerlach blazed by me all of a sudden. I had a choice and decided to take a risk. They were running 5:55 - 6:00 miles and I decided to join them for a mile, then 2....then 4. It. was. awesome. Ian cruised in for his finish and I started lap 3 alone. They definitely gave me a huge boost and remind me how much running "tactics" can matter. 
  • The water was warm and a nice temperature. 
  • my DAD, the one & only Dr. G, was there to cheer me on and I got to spend some quality time with him this weekend. I love my Dad more than possibly anyone in the world and whenever I'm around him (and also when I'm not, I guess), I constantly think how lucky I am to have such a cool, fun, easygoing and supportive father. I'm his #1 fan although sometimes in my pre-race stress I forget to show it. 
Post race dinner date at Lambert's with Dr. G. Had to replenish my electorlytes/salt stores 
The Bad (going to keep these to a minimum because I'm not interested in wah wah wah-ing myself through this race report but I do want to keep my learning experiences so eventually hopefully I may learn from them.)
  • Oh dear. My bike ride was not impressive. Just didn't have it today. Started out ok, but with temperatures in the low 40s all morning, despite taking time for arm warmers & gloves, I was still cold and for some reason have trouble keeping my heart rate and effort level up when that happens. I started w/ my HR in the 160s and after 20 miles could barely keep it in the 140s...
  • Made some dumb mistakes in the swim. Put my googgles over my cap and I guess they didn't seal properly because one eye was over the plastic of the cap on my forehead (you following me here?). Anyway. They filled up with water, oh, about 20 times. Good times. And I wore a pair I had never openwater swum (?) with and had some crazy fog/lenses too dark and couldn't even see the feet or caps less than 2 feet away from me let alone the buoys. Total rookie mistake. Not happening again. I was about 30-45 seconds behind a solid pack of girls. Need to stay with them. 
Pro swim start in Lake Walter E. Long
  • Dear Austin, WARM UP! That is all. Low 40s on race day made 

The Takeaways 
  • My run is there. Time for some #headdownwattsup the next 3 weeks for Ironman Cozumel. The thing about my riding is that sometimes it's there, or closer at least. I have ridden well in some races this year (Hawaii 70.3, Timberman 70.3, Ironman Wisconsin)...just haven't figured out exactly what makes some good days and some "off" days. I'm going to work on this. And try to consult with some folks about an approach until Cozumel. 
  • Even more motivated now for a seriously winter cycling focus and to finally (after what will be 8 months self-coached) work with someone I believe can help me become a cyclist. I have 2 people in mind and I'm hoping one of them will be up for a "challenge" ;). 
  • Practice open water swimming with your race goggles. Seriously. 
  • I'd say that I need to do some more open water swimming, but with the recent shark attacks in SoCal and the really cold water in the Pacific, this is just not going to happen in November in Cali. But, I'm not giving up on the pool. You hear me? Even though it seems I'm not getting any better, I'm still going to put in the yards six days a week and I know that one day it will come together. 
  • No matter what, even on a bad day, I love being out on the run course and cheering for  friends (even when they are beating me). I love talking to people after the race and hearing about their highs and lows. I love feeling like I gave what I had on that day, even when what I had wasn't awesome or what I had hoped for. I love looking on the bright side and planning how to be better and believing I can get there. I know I'm such a geek for triathlon, but if you don't love it, why do it? #Livewhatyoulove , right? 
Thank you to all of my supporters and sponsors. Rehab United was integral in making my Austin trip happen so a big super thank you to Bryan, my friend and supporter- THANK YOU!
2012 isn't wrapped up yet and I'm looking forward to a fun finish, Mexico style! 
Thank you to Zoot for taking on the local girl and supplying the best gear & shoes out there. Raced for the first time in the Ovwa 2.0s and they carried me to another fastest ladies run split- couldn't do it without the shoes. seriosuly.  Cannondale- my Slice is the perfect ride decked in SRAM, & Race Day Wheels ,and my SRM powermeter.. Thanks to Nytro for keeping it all in working, blinging' order (Russ, Chris & Matt are my heroes... Thank you to them for being my "bike fairy", I know I'm high maintenance. Thanks to Studeo DNA for my bike fit & so much more. Thanks to Sonja at Zipp for the whomp whomp Super 9! Thank you to Tri Bike Transport for getting my bike here so nice and easy and for taking it off my hands right after the race- no better feeling!!! 
*Thank you to  Dan SelstadRehab United, & MRM for helping me build my chassis, recover quickly and stay healthy-.I use so many MRM products, but I couldn't function without my Hydration Factor & Reload. Rehab United- functional strength 2x/ week, ART with Selstad every other week...the secret sauce! 
*Many gracias also to ISM saddlesBetty Designs, & Beaker Concepts  for making sure I'm comfortable, stylish & fast. I never race without my Adamo racing 2, my betty designs wrist band or my Beaker Concepts Blaze. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Stormy


I started this post last Monday.....hmmmm...and now its Saturday. Busy week, I guess...

saw (& loved) this on TJs instagram. Sums up how I've been feeling lately. 
Well, we're getting nailed over here in SoCal for constantly posting Instagram photos of sunny skies, palm trees, bikinis, and sunsets. This weekend was gloomy at best and stormy at worst, but we keep on keepin' on. Sometimes it makes me feel like a real cyclist to tough it out in the rain, so Saturday my 90 miles + 5 mile brick run had me feeling gritty (figuratively and literally as I was covered in dirt by the end).
Dirty bikes, thanks for the pic, Courtney!
Courtney & John through the drizzle. 
Things ended up clearing up by mid-week, but fall is definitely in the air. Cool, dark mornings are making it tough to listen to that 5am alarm and get my butt to the pool. But the afternoons are sunshiny, so long as you get your ride done before dark...
"Fall" in SoCal

Now it's Saturday, I'm in Austin for the 70.3 this weekend. So far it's, well...Let's just say I need to explore the town more because all I've seen so far is highways, lots of traffic, a bit of farm land and it is REALLY COLD! I did not pack appropriately for this weather, so time to get creative on the race day kit today. The start list is massive. I'll have my work cut out for me!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Kona 2012 short & sweet

Note to self: 4 days in Hawaii is not enough! In case you were busy, over the first two days, we had a fine time at the underpants run and then rode the entire Ironman course to Hawi. I felt like the whole trip was kind of difficult to balance training with all of the spectating and hanging out with the folks I only get to see at races. Being 6 weeks out from Ironman Cozumel, I knew I had to log some training miles & be serious, but wanted to also maximize the non-training good times. Basically, I don't think I ever really sat down unless it was to eat (and the eating was GOOD! Poke, acai bowls, sushi, Lava Java coffee & oat bran muffins, fish tacos, and maybe a Pina Colada "lunch" or two).

Saturday was the big show. I can't tell you how excited I was to finally spectate the World Champs. And it completely lived up to expectations.
Ironman swim start. Nothing like it. Photo by Thierry Sourbier
I stayed in town for the most part- watched the swim, went on a 2:30 run - Did the first half with Amanda and then swapped 'er out for the Cannondale guys. Lots of miles hoofed on Ali'i drive that day while the bike portion of the Ironman was underway.
Lonely road to Hawi- Photo by Thierry Sourbier
Later on, I took my (well, Cody's) bike out to the Queen K to watch the suffering in person during the back half of the marathon. It's amazingly quiet out there and I got a chance to see and cheer for many of my faves- Sarah P., Linsey, Reilly, Kelly, Jen S. and others as they climbed out of the energy lab and started the final 10k trek back down to Ali'i drive. The race was a tough, hot day with a super windy bike and it was truly impressive just to witness the fitness.
Female Ironman (AND 70.3) World Champ 2012: Leanda Cave

Although I want to race there next year, it looked so tough that I certainly didn't have any race envy watching them the last hour of that thing. Wow. And the midnight finish...spectacular. Nothing like it.

The rest of the weekend is kind of a blur. I managed to meet up with a bunch of friends but still there were a few more I really wanted to see but saw hardly at all (Kerrie, Sue & Chloe, Hailey, Sarah), making me wish for even just one more on the island. Sunday night, we met up with Hillary & Samantha for a final dinner and it was such a buzzkill to tear myself away from the margs and head to the airport for the long red eye back to Monday morning work. I'm already looking forward to my next Hawaiian adventure which will hopefully be at Honu 70.3 in June.

A big thanks to Cody for not only putting me up for the weekend in his beautiful house, but for loaning me his bike to cruise around and for helping me out in every way possible (and you too, Tati!) . I feel so fortunate to have met you!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Monkeying around in #KONA



I was lucky enough to make my way to the Big Island for som big spectating at the Superbowl of triathlon this weekend- the Ironman World Championships. Next year, I'll be on the start line (explicit use of The Secret, exhibit A), but this year I'm happy to cheer, train, and do all of the things you can't do when you're racing this Ironman thing.

So far, it's been a lot of catching up with friends, some solid training, and of course, the Underpants run. This year, our "Team" raised money for Hawaiian charities by charging folks $ to take a photo with us. Is that so wrong?

Thursday started with the Underpants run....


Kristin, Angi, Rachel, Caleigh, Me, Laura, Donna
Then a quick ride and done in time for coffee catch up (ok gossip & scone eating session) with Hillary and Rachel - two of my favorite reasons I love going to races (because I get to see them!)

Parking lot documentation of H&R rendezvous. 

And finished with a Zoot photo shoot out in the Energy Lab


Friday, Tatiana and I headed out to ride the Ironman course. The first 90 miles were awesome. The last 20, not so much. A borrowed road bike that doesn't quite fit, a flat tire, and a stiff headwind are not ideal in hour #6 of a ride. But onwards we rode.




Hawaiian #ridesnack Tempura shrimp handroll at mile 85
 Tomorrow is the BIG DAY! I can't wait to watch my friends shine and am hoping especially for an amazing day from my favorite American girls Linsey, Meredith, Sarah P., Hailey, and Kelly. I am getting 3rd party butterflies just typing this! (Edit: And Kerrie! How could I forget that lady? She's unforgettable! watch out for her pac-man-ing ladies on the run)...oh, and sonja and michelle, and everyone else I forgot....oh jeez.)


Saturday, October 6, 2012

Superfrog Triathlon 2012 race report

Ok, let's make this quick....
Sand running at high tide. loads of fun. 
It was a half iron distance. Lance showed up and raced in a speedo and broke the course record. I forgot to get a winners pic of us together. The run is abnormally hard, and I almost drowned in the swim. That 'bout sums it up!

For the longer version- check out an interview they did with me at Slowtwitch:

I cut and pasted the race recap portion below but the full interview gives a lot more insight into my mindset, my fear or the ocean, and other things going on this season & next:


ST: Take us through your race if you could.

Beth: Honestly, it felt like a very uncomfortable training day as I was still feeling some heavy legs from Wisconsin. The swim was harsh with some pretty big surf, and with 2 loops, you had to make it out past the overhead waves 2 times. Not my fave, but I kept reminding myself to be professional and do my job. I must admit, I went into survival mode trying to navigate the waves and the current. The bike is flat and pretty fast. So flat that I ran a Zipp disc (which I hardly ever do) on my Slice. I didn’t have too much sparkle but I tried to keep my feet on the gas and make it to the run. The run is one of the hardest 13.1 miles I’ve ever done and the times reflect that. About 6 miles of the Superfrog run was in soft sand along the beach at high tide. It was not normal! I knew during the run that I was the lead woman and I didn’t see any girls chasing me down. I ran comfortably hard and told myself that if anyone happened to run up, I would take ‘em on. It was nice to be able to cheer on the service men out there representing our Armed forces and thank the volunteers. 


Look at that sweet winners paddle! 

I can't thank my sponsors enough for everything they do to get and keep me race ready. A huge special shoutout to Sonja from Zipp for getting me a disc last minute so I could get all whomp whomp on the Silver Strand.

Thanks to all below who made this happen- a no excuses setup for sure. 




Thank you to 
Zoot for taking on the local girl and supplying the best gear & shoes out there. My Ultra TT 5.0s carried me to another fastest ladies run split- couldn't do it without the shoes. seriosuly. 
Cannondale- my Slice is the perfect ride decked in SRAM, & Race Day Wheels  and my SRM powermeter.. Thanks to Nytro for keeping it all in working, blinging' order and Studeo DNA for my bike fit & so much more. 
*Thank you to  Dan SelstadRehab United, & MRM for helping me build my chassis, recover quickly and stay healthy-.I use so many MRM products, but I couldn't function without my Hydration Factor & Reload. Rehab United- functional strength 2x/ week, ART with Selstad every other week...the secret sauce! 
*Many gracias also to ISM saddlesBetty Designs, & Beaker Concepts  for making sure I'm comfortable, stylish & fast. I never race without my Adamo racing 2, my betty designs wrist band or my Beaker Concepts Blaze.