Sunday, February 24, 2013

In a week....

think on it
A lot can happen in a week. A full week's vacation from work gives me plenty of time to train, but also plenty of time to think, dream, and sit back and actually take in the lovely life around me. I've been so busy this past year just trying to stay afloat that sometimes I lost perspective and forgot to take in the good around me every day. This past week, I couldn't help but smile in just taking an observational eye into the life I get to lead. I don't know what the future holds for me, but for this week, I thoroughly just enjoyed being in my present. My now. It's not perfect. It's not "the end". But on the trail of my life....It's not the summit, it's not the switchbacky descent, nor the easy flowy singletrack...I think it's one of those foot bridges over a tiny stream. Connecting two parts of the trail. One of those spots where people stop and take a picture, or listen to their feet tap tap on the planks as they walk over. It's a nice spot. Eventually I'll move on, but for now, it's a nice spot.

here and now
In the past week....I watched the sunset in the desert, I laughed and reconnected with old friends, I swam in the noon sunshine, I made new friends, I climbed a big mountain on my bicycle, I listened to good music, I talked to my mom, I ran a half marathon and smiled the whole way, I ate 3 for a dollar Mexican pastries with some of my best friends in the middle of nowhere on a 100 mile ride, I ran alone on the beach at the lowest tide I've ever seen, I tried to cheer up a friend, I drank champagne & ate the best ice cream I've ever tasted, I painted my nails red, I signed up for some races, I tried to be a good listener, I sat outside and drank coffee, and I even took a nap or two.
low tide out my front door
celebrating life in Tucson
climbing a mountain on my bicycle
3 for a dollar! only in Mexico San Diego

p.s. If you're here for the training dish, thanks for entertaining this interlude. And for you.....Ironman Cabo training feels solid and strong. Long day in Mexico in less than 3 weeks.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

They call this training? Part 2.

Been thinking on this one lately, Thanks for sharing, Kir! 

It's been a busy couple weeks as I'm in the final push for Ironman Los Cabos (4 weeks to go!), but again, I find myself saying, "They call this training?" I seem to be head down, working hard (on the trainer, at work, in the pool, etc) during the week...not much room to breathe, but making space for some epic weekends.
In the pool, I've been aiming to make each masters session count. On Friday at 6am, I had half of one of these funfetti cupcakes pre-swim and enjoyed one of my speediest, strongest sessions ever... I may be on to some kind of fueling secret...
magic cupcakes?
After the head down/get it done jam packed weeks, I've been enjoying "traincations" each weekend. Last weekend I ended up in Palm Springs with my advisor Mitch, his lovely wife Courtney, and a bunch of their friends who made a trip out from Chicago (Thank you to the Chicago crew for the amazing hospitality!).
You know you're close to Palm Springs when....
We hit long rides both days out there and I'm spending lots of time in the aero bars, something I've kind of slacked on in the past. Joshua Tree national park has perfect roads for this.

Joshua Trees!

Box Canyon ride
From Palm Springs I went seemingly straight to the office to get the other kind of work done all week so that I could enjoy another traincation the following weekend.
So, Friday afternoon (of this current weekend), I headed out to Tucson, AZ to see a bunch of friends who live here to put in another solid 3-day punch for IMLos Cabos. I'm lucky enough to be shacking up chez Samatha McGlone where the good times flow and the espresso never runs dry..

Solo road trip calls for some #selfies, no?

Saturday, Jordan and I joined her coach, Chris Hauth, and his "campers" for a long brick to Patagonia. 100mile ride and a 10k t-run (where I just maybe almost kinda sorta cracked in the last mile). Very windy conditions, but a flawless training day thanks to Chris & SAG Monkey Nick (This SAG Monkey situation is AH-mazing...A professional soigneur for any old Joe ;) . Nick takes care of the bikes, supplies food/water, bakes delicious ride snacks and even has a cooler of beer and comfy chairs at the end. First class support all the way- check him out if you ever need training support)
Riding in style
Riding in style again- on Hauth's wheel ALL DAY. Wind, what wind?

Now, it's only Sunday and I still have 2.5 full days to make the most of this traincation..Will keep you posted...Of for a family run long on the trails of the dirty T!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

They call this training?

Logging some big weeks here, but somehow having more fun than ever (please remind me I wrote this later this afternoon when everyone is watching the Super Bowl and I'm dragging my sorry arse to the pool...but i'll be out in time for the halftime show [balance!])

I feel so incredibly freaking lucky to be in this little North County San Diego bubble where the endurance lifestyle is considered "fun" and my social activities and training blend so seamlessly. Don't get me wrong, there is some serious hard work going on. Strava suffer scores in the "Extreme" range all over the place, lots of yards in the pools and building up my running volume & intensity.

But somehow, half my workouts end up feeling like a cocktail party or special occasion. May help that I know a gazillion people born around this time of year (including me!) so we're doing lots of "birthday workouts"...Which for my birthday on Jan 30th included a 99 mile ride w/ 7500ft of climbing and a hilly 5 mile transition run with some of my closest (crazy) friends..No big deal. All in the name of fun, right? Then, the next day was Keith's birthday so one of the workouts included his favorite #secrettrackworkout and our first real speed session of the year.

I do have a bit of non-endurance fun too and had a happy birthday hour at Beachside bar...Of course it was full of all of my endurance friends- which means party started before 6 and ended by 9...perfect for 8hrs sleep & up in time for 6am swim before work.
 me & katie. not in lycra! 

Legend Mike Rouse, Skinny Pirate, Me, "Birthday Banana" from Jené because she knows how I like my bananas (no green, not too much brown)

Yesterday, The weather was beautiful, so after my morning swim, Courtney & I punched a one-way ticket and rode bikes out east to watch our friends at the Boulevard road race: 7000ft of climbing into a bit of a headwind, big ringing the climbs, 3x10 min TT efforts on the flats...And in between? Girl talk. Ended up in the middle of nowhere with trashed legs, ringing cowbell & hooting and hollering for our bad ass friends.
me, Courtney, Jess...evidently SoCal winter endurance chic = Hat, puffy jacket, sunglasses & leggings (Shout out to Jess who was 3rd in the Pro 1/2 race!) 

Today, I decided to sandwich the local Cardiff Kook 10k in the middle of my Ironman training long run..The plan was for 20 miles total, but we ran into Andy Baldwin's birthday run after the race (36 miles for 36 years, I told you people around here are crazy and no, I did not run 36 miles) so I ended up logging a few bonus miles with their crew along the coast. whoops. But hey, throw a 10k PR of 37:30 in there and I'm a happy camper.

Me, Katie, Katya post- 10k pre- bonus miles

The Dr. Andy Baldwin birthday crew. He was raising money for Got Your Back Network (helps families of fallen soldiers).

So, yeah. I'm training. Training hard. But it seems to be at the intersection of fun & friends. I'll take it.
from ride to Boulevard w/ courtney..the cutout part of the hill is the start of  Mt. Laguna climb.

This post is apt as I just ADD'd out on twitter and saw Katya posted this, "With friends like   , I dunno if I need enemies. No more birthday workouts, please!!;)" .