Sunday, March 29, 2009

IM CDA week 15

Easily convinced...

Guess what yours truly did last week? Got a slot for Ironman St. George! I initially received an email from the IM folks about this inaugural event but didn't give it a second thought. A day or so later, Chris emailed his athletes about this event and said what a great event it would be for AIMP to do. A couple of emails later, I got a slot. Such a sucker! Anyone else inspired enough to get a slot?! :-)

It has been beautiful here in the Bay Area and Saturday was no different. Set out for an early (7am) ride starting from Fairfax with Ted and Caesar. We rode out to Pt. Reyes and came back via Samuel Taylor Park. It was such an awesome day and an awesome ride! I am comfortable in my new bike fit. Feeling a lot more comfortable in aero and I've noticed that my climbing has become a lot smoother and easier as well! Must be all the low cadence stuff coach has us doing in CT class. Let's hope this progression keeps progressing!

So after my near death experience last weekend at Lake San Antonio..okay fine exaggerating a little..after my very scary 50+ minutes in the water last weekend where I coughed and choked, I decided it was imperative that I take a dip in the waters of Aquatic Park to see if it was infact allergies that caused my difficulties in the water. I think it's safe to say that it was. I hopped in with Mary this week for 20 minutes or so and was able to breathe and swim fine. A bit cold for us to swim long but enough for me to notice that I wasn't choking :-). I was getting a bit worried that I might have somehow developed a fear to open water...phew! Coincidentally, I had an appt. with my physician for a physical, she is convinced that my episode last weekend was nothing more than a bronchi..something something. Fancy term for an allergic reaction in the lungs. 

Anyway, leaving for Oceanside 70.3 this Thursday...wish me luck!

Workout Summary-
Swim- 3 hours and 45 minutes
Bike- 7 hours and 15 minutes
Run- 3 hours and 6 minutes
Total Workout- 13 hours and 51 minutes

Sunday, March 22, 2009

IM CDA week 14

What the heck happened?

Alright let's start off by picking up where I left off last week...I was about to take my second LT test. My first test showed that I had a LOT of strength that I needed to build. So...12 weeks we are second LT test. I had no idea what to expect going in..I knew what I was hoping for..just a number higher than last time! Prior to my test, I did a little pre-shopping at
Above Category and if I liked my test, then I was going to buy what I had picked out. Actually, I probably would have bought it regardless :-). Anyway, so my test results came in, a solid 30% increase in power! Score! Chris said he liked the results so if coach ia happy with the results, then I was as well! Oh, forget to mention, my zone 2 heart rate increased by 20 beats. Let's see how my body will adjust to that one! So now higher numbers means a tougher computrainer class. I adjusted quite well on Tuesday and Thursday, well I was just trying to hold on in class as the intervals were tough!! I had never pushed the down button faster than I did that day (down button brings wattage back to 50 for easy warm up/spin)!

Onto the latter part of my week- Wildflower training weekend with the Ironteam! I was really excited about this weekend as I wanted to get an open water swim in me before Oceanside and test out my new heart rate on the bike course with my TT bike. Saturday morning, Dave woke us up at 4:55am with the music of Scottish bag pipes. Seriously, Dave! Imagine the sound of
this at 4:55am!

So, I've swum many times in open water with no issues, ever. I love the open water but somehow on Saturday morning, Lake San Antonio didn't like me. I swum for about 3 minutes before I felt my throat scrunch up and just couldn't breath anymore. It really sucked! After 50+ minutes of trying, hanging onto the kayak (thanks Brian) and hanging onto my friend Hez (she water jogged as I kicked), I decided to ask Brian to bring me back to the dock as I kicked behind the kayak. As I got out of the water, my eyes swelled up as well as my throat. Non-stop coughing for 50+ minutes was pretty darn awful! What did all that mean for my bike? It didn't happen! I biked about 6 miles.. stopping about 5 times since I couldn't catch my breath...bust of a training weekend!!! Highly disappointed and at a lost as to what the heck happened?! So what's next? Well, I am going to have to do the dreaded....jump into the waters of Aquatic Park to see if it was the crap that was in Lake San Antonio that caused my breathing issues or was it my wetsuit or did something mental develop? Did I mention that I had a feeling it wasn't going to be a smooth weekend as Friday was just a mess as I was heading down there. Mess included a street cleaning ticket right before leaving AND locking my keys in my car but luckily I knew where my spare was. Anyway, more to come on my open water mystery!!

In the meantime, check out this picture I took while driving back from Lake San Antonio. Do you see the doggie in the cloud formation?
Workout Summary-
Swim- 3 hours and 9 minutes
Bike- 4 hours and 41 minutes
Run- 3 hours and 50 minutes
Total workout- 11 hours and 2 minutes

Sunday, March 15, 2009

IM CDA week 13

Swim're not even out of breath!

That's what Chris said to me towards the end of my swim training today. To my defense, it was supposed to be an easy swim as I am getting my second lactate test tomorrow! It's difficult to gauge how hard you're supposed to work during a swim. During the bike and runs, it's easy because that's what the heart rate monitor and your training zones are supposed to be for but with the's a bit grey. Regardless, I will swim harder for now on and if I am not out of breath by the end of my set/interval, then that means I an not swimming hard enough...

Speaking of lactate second one comes tomorrow with Craig at Performance Labs. What happens during a test? Basically, I warm up on my bike for about 15 minutes, then Craig will prick my finger for blood and increase my power wattage on the bike by 20 watts every 3 minutes until I can pedal no longer at 80+ rpm. Chris then uses the watts for computrainer class and my heart rate for training zones. Speaking of class, the pain cave has now become the pain dungeon. Halfway through class on Tuesday, fans were shut off..then on Thursday, Chris wouldn't let us turn the fans on at all... what's next? I don't really want to know. So back to test, I have a feeling that Chris has some expectations about this upcoming test. I'm not nervous...I don't feel the pressure...calm as can be! 

Saturday bike ride was windy was h*ll! Kara, Caesar, Michela, Chris H. and I met up at the intersection of Sir Francis & Platform Bridge. Kara and I had a 4 hour ride while Caesar had a 3.5 hour ride. We all stayed together up until we hit the water, that's when we split up according to our heart rate zones. I didn't see Kara again until 3.5 hours into my ride. It was pretty darn windy but scenery out by Pt. Reyes and the oyster farms was just beautiful and calm...almost romantic in a way! I was really looking forward to this ride as I wanted to get used to my new bike position. I had Craig fit me on the TT bike and he changed quite a few things, most telling was the much lower position in the front. The bottom half of my body adjusted well but the shoulders are definitely feeling the much lower adjustment! I was supposed to have zone 3 pick ups during this bike and a 45 minute run as well but got an email from coach Friday evening instructing me to stay strictly in zone 2, cut the run out, easy swim on Sunday (clearly we have different definitions of "very easy"), plenty of rest and recovery for a rockin' test on Monday. 

Who am I kidding? Definitely nervous and feeling the pressure for my test! Wish me luck! Recap of that next week...

Found myself missing Italy this week so I am sharing with you one of my favorite photos that I took while in Venice back in 2004-
Workout Summary-
Swim- 3 hours and 10 minutes
Bike- 7 hours and 0 minutes
Run- 1 hour and 10 minutes
Total workout- 11 hours and 20 minutes

Sunday, March 8, 2009

IM CDA week 12

Just wanted a wireless bike computer with cadence!

In CT class, coach focuses a lot on cadence and since I don't have cadence on my bike computer, I often went by mileage. I decided this after class this week to pick up a new computer with cadence. I don't want to deal with wires so I optimally, I wanted to find a wireless one. I went to
Sports Basement after work, looked at the Cateye V3 which also has heart rate, as well as, the Polar CS200cad. After deciding on the Polar, I asked the bike guys if they can install it. Their answer? "$65/hour." So then after telling me that it wouldn't take a full hour, yet at the same time focusing on how much of a pain in the @ss installing these things are, I caved and said, "Okay..can you guys do it today?" Their response? "No..not today..maybe tomorrow." Maybe?? Uh..nevermind! I use to like the bike guys over at SB. Used to! So I rolled my TT bike out utterly annoyed. Then it dawned on it, Bike Nut! I called the shop, Alex answered, told me they had a Cateye V2C (which is what I originally wanted anyway) and said that they'd install it right there and then, score! I made it to Bike Nut within 5 minutes and within 45 minutes or so, I rolled out my bike with a Cateye V2C nicely installed. Now that's service I would pay extra for! I mean, the last time I checked, we were in a recession and you'd think that more retail stores would be more like Bike Nut and do whatever they need to do for a nice sale, right?!

Jason Mesnick, the Bachelor, you are not worth the words I have for you! Especially, when you wasted three hours of my time on Monday night which caused me to be sleep deprived for CT class on Tuesday AM which caused me to be the popular kid in class as coach kept having to remind me to "cadence up" and "turn it over." Thanks Bachelor for reminding us single ladies why sometimes, it's better that we remain single! Jerk! You don't break up with your fiancee one minute and then the next minute, make out with your #2!

Anyway..moving on..this weekend's training consisted of much time spent in my heart rate Z3. Let me tell ya, Z3 was tough for me to reach! Even when I was climbing on my bike, my heart rate was teetering at 153-155 almost teasing me. I use to be able to hit Z3 and beyond with no problem when climbing. I start Z3 at 156 on the bike. So does this mean that my fitness level has improved? Maybe? One can only hope :-). On the run today was even worse! I had inclines, ran hard against the wind, but still was able to just reach 166 though I hit 170 for a bit. My run Z3 starts at 166. Most of my time was spent in 160-165, again, almost teasing me! Need to talk to coach about what I need to do to bet better at reaching Z3 in a more timely manner!!

I'm starting to feel a tickle in my throat...I best not get sick again! I can't! Must take Tylenol Cold Symptom tonight and go to bed..but not before I take in my Sprinkles Red Velvet cupcake!

Workout Summary-
Swim- 1 hour and 55 minutes
Bike- 8 hours and 30 minutes
Run- 3 hours and 55 minutes
Total workout- 14 hours and 20 minutes

Monday, March 2, 2009

IM CDA week 11

"Put some umph into your pull, Yi!"

Or maybe Coach said, "Put some umph into your stroke, Yi!" I think by umph, he means more strength. Working on it! I was so relieved that weekend IVC swim with Coach didn't turn out to be bootcamp like swim. We didn't do any head up drills (thank goodness) and we didn't do any of those ridiculous "pull ourselves up from the deck that is literally taller then me" drills! It was a rather pleasant swim session, well rain and all. I might have had a breakthrough in my swim stroke this week! Coach gave me a bunch of 50's to do during the week and in doing those 50's, I can tell what I am doing wrong in my stroke and how it feels when I do it right! I think we might be on to something :-). I have to say that I am really enjoying this season so far. The training sessions make sense to me, I am feeling progressive during my trainings week over week. I get LT testing again in two weeks to see that progress in numbers form. Hopefully, we'll see something that means results! 

I have to say, had I known as a kid that triathlons and Ironmans would be my lifestyle and passion as an adult, I would have stuck to swimming from 8th grade on and joined the swim team! Maybe I wouldn't be slower than molasses in the water then?! Oceanside is about 4 weeks away and I am a bit nervous. Actually, a lot nervous but it'll be good to get rid of the race jitters before Ironman CdA. 

Just registered for the Nautica Malibu Triathlon! I had put the race on my 2009 race schedule but wasn't totally sure. All it took was Kara asking, "Wanna go for it?" So we went for it! Kara is registered for both Olympic and Sprint distances. I registered for the Olympic and will be the photographer on Sunday. At $155, it's one of the cheaper races that I've registered for in a long time!

Youtube video of the week-

The Bachelor finale is 15 minutes away...until next week!

Workout Summary-
Swim-3 hours and 26 minutes
Bike- 5 hours and 0 minutes
Run-3 hours and 15 minutes
Total workout- 11 hours and 41 minutes