Sunday, June 26, 2011

Weekly Training Recap

Sunday - Rest
Monday - Ran 7 miles
Tuesday - Biked 15 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Wednesday - Ran 4 miles
Thursday - Biked 15 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Friday - Ran 4 miles
Saturday - 30 minutes Abs class, 60 minutes Zumba

I can tell my training is paying off, slowly but surely I am getting faster. I increased both my tempo pace and speed interval pace by .1 mph this week. Not a huge increase, but I am happy with it. Next week I am going to try to increase it another .1 mph. Eventually I would like to improve my half-marathon pace to around 9:10/mile, so far I have gone from a 12:58 pace to a 10:40 pace.

My husband is away for work and has our home laptop so I have had limited access to blogging. I have been reading everyone's, but I'm not really able to comment. Hope everyone is having a great week!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Weekly Training Recap

Sunday - Ran 8 miles
Monday - Biked 25 miles, walked 2 miles
Tuesday - Ran 4 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Wednesday, Biked 12 miles, ran 2 miles (brick)
Thursday - Ran 4 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Friday - 30 minutes Bottoms Up (killer butt class), 20 minutes Elliptical
Saturday - 30 minutes ABSolutely (killer abs class), 60 minutes Zumba

I have been cheating on my tri training with group exercise classes. They are just too much fun! I haven't been doing any weight training so the classes alleviate some of the guilt since they help tone and strengthen.

I can finally see my training paying off! I was able to do both of my 4 mile runs at the pace I wanted, without having to slow down half way through. And that was after starting the week with my long run and long bike.

Exercising has become so much more fun now that I am focusing on doing the workouts I enjoy and not worrying about following a particular plan. I know in the end, no one really cares about the training and races I do but me. I mean, my family and friends support me, but they aren't going to be disappointed in me if I don't do something. I am the only one that will be disappointed. So why do I stress myself out over it so much? Hubby says, if I am feeling better, and I feel in better shape and more healthy and physically fit, that is what matters. Not if I do 10 half-marathons or run a 7-minute mile.

The other thing I have been struggling with is spending so much money on training. Running was expensive to start, getting a Garmin, clothes, gear, etc., but now it is pretty cheap. Just Power Bars and a new pair of shoes every few months. Tri training, however, seems to have a never-ending string of expenses. Swimming suit, bike/tri shorts, bike, helmet, gloves, pedals, shoes, wetsuit rental, gym membership (for pool access), bike tune-up and fitting, goggles, swim cap, and on and on. Not to mention the race fees can be twice as much as a running race. I am finding it hard to rationalize spending so much money on a "hobby." In order for me to do even one race this season, I will have to spend several hundred dollars. Is it worth it? Last year we were able to do any race we wanted, buy any gear we wanted. Now we have a house and a new car, and we have to pick and choose what training and races we can do. Last year I was doing races every week. Now I try to limit it to one race per month. It does make racing a little more special though, since I can't just do it any weekend I want.

These are just the thoughts I've had lately. I have a lot of time to think with all the time I spend on the treadmill and the bike :)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Busting a Rut

While I love the predictability of a routine workout schedule, I have been sliding into a rut lately. Every week I do the same workouts on the same days for the same distances (except for long workouts of course). It was getting old! This week I decided to shake things up.

First I threw caution to the wind and did my long bike on Monday. Why not?

Second I added a mid-week brick to my schedule. Biked 12 miles, ran 2 miles. This means I will run 3 days in a row, which I don't think I've ever done, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

Third, I am taking a class on Friday called Bottoms Up! It's a butt class. I am SO EXCITED. My favorite Zumba instructor is teaching it, and she has a really good butt.

So far I am happy with the changes. Things were just getting too boring.

If you have any other ideas for getting out of a rut, let me know!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Training Week Recap/Helvetia Half-Marathon

Sunday - Walked 6 miles
Monday - Ran 4 miles
Tuesday - Biked 15 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Wednesday - Ran 4 miles
Thursday - Biked 15 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Friday - Rest day
Saturday - Walked 13.1 miles (Helvetia Half-Marathon)

I did absolutely no swimming this week. That is not good. Since hubby came home on Monday night I was trying to spend a little time with him this week after work instead of being at the gym every night. We found out he has to go to a 3-week training course in GA, and then another 2-week training course in CA back to back, so he will be gone from June 20-July 23. So, getting all my workouts in seems a little less important this week and next week.

One good thing is that my mom and I did our first mother-daughter half-marathon on Saturday! It was perfect weather, around 60-65, partly cloudy, and she did awesome! We beat our time goal by 10 minutes. I loved doing this race because there are TONS of walkers. The most I have ever seen for a half-marathon. Over 150 people finished after us, so we didn't feel like we were at the back of the line the whole time. She had a great time too, I think I have convinced her that we should make it an annual event :)

All ready to go!

We made it!

After the race I went home to shower and let the dog out, then after hubby got home from work we met up with my parents for a celebration dinner at our favorite Italian restaurant, Nonna Emilia's. We were celebrating our race, my mom's retirement, and Father's Day, since they will be out of town next weekend. It was a great dinner, I love my family!

I don't have any races on the schedule for the next two months, so I am on the hunt today to find something. Any suggestions?

Friday, June 10, 2011

23-Day Challenge Update

Earlier I had mentioned I was using my alone time while my husband was gone to work on my diet and exercise routine. Then my computer broke so I couldn't write about what happened during my self challenge. But now we have a new computer so I am finally getting to catch up on blogs, etc.

During the 23 days, I worked out 1-2 hours a day (or 3 depending on the workout), 6 days a week, and tried to stick to a diet around 1500 calories. One day a week I would rest and eat over 2000 calories to keep my body from thinking I was starving it.

- Lost 11.6 lbs
- Reduced body fat by 3%
- Lost 2" in my waist
- Lost 1" in my chest
- Lost 1" around my thigh
- Lost 3/4" around my upper arm

I really wish I had taken a before picture so I could compare it with after. I can definitely tell the difference in my legs and mid-section.

The funny (and frustrating) thing is, I lost all the weight in the first 2 weeks, and I didn't lose any after that. But my body fat went down 2% in the last 2 weeks, so I know I must be losing fat and gaining muscle. That is ok by me! But I would like to eventually get back to what I weighed last summer (about 9 lbs less than now). Overall though I am happy with the results!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Tri Training Week 3 Recap

Sunday – Walked 10 miles
Monday – Ran 7 miles, swam 1200 yards
Tuesday – Biked 15 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Wednesday – Ran 4 miles
Thursday – Biked 15 miles, 60 minutes Zumba
Friday – rest day
Saturday – Run for the Roses 5K, biked 25 miles

Running – 14.1 miles
Biking – 55 miles
Swimming – 1200 yards

69.78 miles

As you can tell my training took a hit the day I found out my tri was cancelled (Wednesday). I was also trying to take it a little easy later in the week since I had a race on Saturday, so I skipped a swim on Wednesday and didn’t do my usual long bike and swim on Friday. I had so much free time on Friday, I didn’t know what to do!

I am feeling so relieved since I made the decision to ease up on my training. Slowly the guilt is going away :) I am hypercritical of myself so of course I saw myself as a failure for the first few days because I couldn’t stick with it. But now I am enjoying having the extra time, and not worrying about how to fit in a phone call to my sister in law and a trip to the grocery store between a 30-mile bike ride and 1500-yard swim.

Next weekend I am walking the Helvetia Half-Marathon with my mom. We walked the 10k part of this race last year and had a great time. She is retiring and the day before the race is her last official day with students ever (she teaches 5th grade) so the race will also be a celebration! I can’t wait. She turned 60 in December and I think it is so cool that she is doing her first half-marathon at 60 years old. I hope we do it together every year!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Catching Up

A lot has been going on. Unfortunately last weekend our home computer got a virus and it wiped out our hard drive :( My brother is going to take a look at it and see if he can recover anything. But for now I have limited computer access. I can read blogs on my phone, but I can’t post. So I have to write a giant post now to make up for it!

Several bloggers have written posts this week about how sometimes life gets in the way and you just need a break, and you shouldn’t beat yourself up over missing a workout or eating something you shouldn’t. Boy does that apply to my life right now! By the middle of my third week of training, I wasn’t enjoying it anymore. I was starting to dread my workouts, each one less enjoyable than the last. Then I got an email that the sprint tri I am signed up for on June 26th is cancelled. I was really upset, I have been training for 2 months and I had just paid for my wetsuit rental! But then I thought maybe it is a blessing in disguise. Training was starting to take over my life, and now I can put the breaks on for awhile. Actually spend time with my husband when he gets back from his deployment (2 more days!).

I had hoped that if I got through my 3 week training “boot camp,” I would be able to stick with it for 13 more weeks and do a 70.3 distance in September. (I have high ambitions!) I think physically I am capable of doing it. I have run 4 half-marathons, and right now I can swim a mile and bike 25-30 miles. But I don’t want to spend my entire summer training and having no life. My husband was training for a 70.3 in August, but he may be deploying again around that time so he had to withdraw. Part of the fun of training is doing it together, so losing that aspect would make it even less enjoyable.

I think I will still do a tri in September, but an Olympic distance. I can swim, bike, and run all of the distances individually so I just have to work on putting them together. It will give me a goal to work toward, but I will still get to have a life and enjoy summer. It doesn’t last long in Oregon! And I will only need to train 4-8 hours a week instead of 8-15. This is much more manageable, I am used to training 4-5 hours a week for half-marathons.

In other, more exciting news…I ran a 5k today and got 3rd place in my age group, 20-29! My last 5k was over a year ago when I had just started running, so I knew I could get a good PR. Since then I have cut 13 minutes off my 10k time and 30 minutes off my half-marathon time. My “pie in the sky” goal was a sub-30. It was supposed to be around 60* at the start (high of 84* today, very warm for here this time of year), so I wore a white tank top and black skirt. The race didn’t start until 8:30, and it was already very sunny and warm by then. I was surprised how warm. We had timing chips so I wasn’t worried that I was about 100 people back from the start. Then when we actually started, I saw there weren’t any timing mats at the start, only at the finish. So our times were still gun times. Oh well.

I got stuck behind a few people but was able to weave around and find a good pace. I knew I would need around a 9:40 pace, but I just tried to find a hard-comfortable speed. For some reason the sun always makes me feel nauseas when running, this started about half-way through. The course was described as “mostly flat.” Yeah right! I lost count of the uphills shortly after the 1-mile marker.

Either the course was mis-marked, or my Garmin was off. Either way, I thought I had blown a sub-30 so when I started to feel really sick during the last mile I stopped to walk for a few seconds. Twice. Then all of a sudden we were making the last turn and running into the stadium (it was held at a high school football field). As I entered the finishing shoot these two women were walking side by side and wouldn’t move to let me pass! I had to say “excuse me” a couple times before they let me through. Grr!

Anyway the clock was still at 59 minutes and some seconds when I went over the timing pads (we started 30 minutes after the half-marathon) and I could not believe it. I am suspicious about the course. I may have started my Garmin a little bit after the start line (there was no clear start line), but it only measured 2.97 at the end, 29:22. My official time was 29:30. I figure, even if the course was a little short, I still would have gotten a time in the 30-minute range, which would be a 3+ minute PR. And we all ran the same course, so I was still the 3rd fastest woman age 20-29! The two women in front of me came in around 28:30. My goal for next year, first in age group! It is a small race, so it may be possible. There is also a 10k and half, so a lot of the faster runners do those instead, leaving the 5k to us slower runners :)

Man this is a long post! It was a bad week to not have a computer, with so much to write about. I guess I will wrap it up. Hope everyone has a great weekend!