Burn Baby Burn

As I kick my feet up to rest up for tomorrow, I can’t help but think about the journey that I’ve been on. The blood, sweat, and tears have brought me to the start line of Ironman Mont Tremblant. I have accomplished things I thought were too far out of my reach. I have put a lot of hay in the barn in the last 9 months and I am ready to light the match and let the barn burn to the ground!

Mojo is racked and ready for an epic adventure tomorrow!

Thanks to everyone who has supported me, encouraged me, inspired me, and have cheered for me on this journey! If you wish to track me tomorrow, I am number 699. See you at the finish line!

1 week ’til #IMMT: Northeast + Canada Trication Part 3

Hello race week! Where did you come from?! I Have been awaiting your arrival for so long! Now that you are here, I’m kind of wishing time would slow down a bit so we could savor this a bit longer!

We made it to Mont Tremblant last Monday and have filled our week with tapering workouts, family time, and relaxation.

Swim: 2187 yards

We got to swim in one of the most cleanest, nicest pools ever in Mont Tremblant! Why can’t we have an indoor facility like this in Ames?!

Bike: 31.5 miles

Riding in our condo thanks to the rain outside.
Putting in some work, but alas the storms showed up and cut our work a bit short for this ride!

Run: 14.7 miles

Getting my happy on with my last double digit run done before race day in this beautiful place!
These running/biking trails are spectacular!
Running with my fave for a few miles to shake out the legs post massage.

Strength Training: 10 minutes of core most days

Weekly Totals: 5 hours & 54 minutes

Weekly Positives:

Crossing the border into Canada!
Arriving at our condo…look at this view!
Riding the gondola to the top of the hills to look out over Mont Tremblant!
The top! These views!
This amazing pizza…I’m dreaming about it!
Getting a pre-race massage at our condo. Melanie Jardot did a FANTASTIC job. HIGHLY recommend her for massage if you are in need of one in Mont Tremblant!
My family from California came came for a few days! #happyheart
Love these three monkeys!
Family snuggles
We went to the top on the gondola again!
Getting ready to ride the luge in the summer!
Riding into the village…that is the Ironman tent in the background!
Taking a quick gander at the Ironman Village as it gets set up!
Enjoying a beer by the fire after babysitting the nieces so my sister and brother-in-law could enjoy a date night!

Quote of the Week:

My heart is full of happiness, love, and gratitude!

What’s Up?! – July 2017

How is it already almost the middle of August?! The month of July seems to have flown by MUCH faster than I’d like, but I guess that means I’m having fun! Here is a look at what went down in July:

Training:

Hello Vermont Track Cat Training Camp!

#trackcatstrong

HUGE hugs to Coach Kelly, with Track Cat Fitness, for challenging me on so many levels, pushing me WAY out of my comfort zone, and making me #trackcatstrong this year! I am forever grateful for her guidance + support this year!

Swim Totals: 16.5 miles
Bike Totals: 487 miles
Run Totals: 98.7 miles

Racing:

I raced the Okoboji Triathlon in the middle of the month and got 2nd in my age group and 11th overall female!

2nd place AG at the Okoboji Triathlon!

Reading:

The Brave Athlete: Calm the F*ck Down and Rise to the Occasion by Simon Marshall PhD and Lesley Paterson is a practical guide to help athletes with their mental training. I love that this book gives you “homework” to do to help you improve your mental performance. It isn’t just a book you read, but if you use this amazing tool correctly, it is also a hands-on approach for you to overcome negative thinking, feelings, and acting that have the potential to sabotage your potential and love for sport. This book has helped keep the fun in triathlon!

Mental Training Homework: Two Brain Hacks to Help Embrace the Suck by Carrie Cheadle is a great read! She gives some great tips for overcoming mental obstacles that you may encounter while training or racing.

Mental Training Homework: Increase Confidence with Simulation Training by Carrie Cheadle is another great read! Simulation training helps you stay in the moment when challenges arise!

Studying:

The Ironman Mont Tremblant race course. Thanks to Mary Eggers for her review of the course and to Patrick for his 3 bullet points for race day!

Enjoying:

Our Northeast adventures! We have enjoyed Stowe, Vermont and Lake Placid, New York. We are officially in Canada and ready to enjoy a few more weeks of adventures with a little Ironman race at the end of our adventures!

Looking Forward To:

Ironman Mont Tremblant race day! I can’t believe we are less than 2 weeks away! How did that happen?!?! Eeekkkk! I’m excited to get to spend time with family in Mont Tremblant before the race and really get a feel for the area!

#Fearless check-in:

My intention for 2017 is to become more fearless! So…how have I been doing with this? I’ve continued to make progress on becoming more fearless. I am also really working on not letting others opinions of me bother me and I think I’ve gotten much better at this…hello #sportsbrasquad and wearing bikinis at the pool for lap swimming. Am I comfortable…not completely, but I’m facing the fear head on and getting more comfortable everyday! Since I’m on summer break, work is on the back burner. I will be back at it soon enough! I have made some BIG gains while training this month thanks to the Vermont Training Camp + many solo workouts that have caused me to stare fear in the face and stretch WAY out of my comfort zone! My fear of heights was also challenged as I went to the top of the Olympic Ski Jump in Lake Placid to look out over the surrounding area. Hello queasy stomach!

Overcoming fears and going to the top of the ski jump to look out over Lake Placid and surrounding areas.

While I’ve made progress on becoming more fearless in different parts of my life, I still have a LOT more progress to make, but don’t we all?! I know I’m a continuous work in progress!

How was your month of July? What were your July highlights? What are you looking forward to?

2 weeks ’til #IMMT: Northeast + Canada Trication Part 2

How is it even possible that we are just under 2 weeks away from Ironman Mont Tremblant?!?! We spent this last week in Lake Placid, NY and it was spectacular! The views, the training, the quiet time, the time spent meeting others…all of it was simply spectacular!

Swim: 11,966 yards

First swim in Mirror Lake in Lake Placid with my fave on Tuesday! These views are amazing!
First swim in Mirror Lake…there is a 1.2 mile cable in the water to follow, just like the black line on the bottom of the pool! How awesome!
First swim in Mirror Lake…I just love the underwater cable!
Swimming in Mirror Lake again on Wednesday…this underwater cable is the bomb!
Swimming in Mirror Lake on Friday with my New Wave buoy! I love that there are no motorized boats allowed on this lake!
Sunday morning’s swim in Mirror Lake was a bit chilly as the air temps were 51*F when I started.
Thankfully the sky started to clear up and allow the sun to start to shine through during Sunday’s swim, but it was till only 59*F when I had to strip my wetsuit…brrr!

Bike: 93.8 miles

Easy recovery ride to shed the training camp fatigue
Easy spin on the bike on a rainy day.
Riding the Ironman Lake Placid bike course means a quick stop at the Olympic Bobsled track!
Mojo loves the views of the Ironman Lake Placid bike course!
I also love the views of the Ironman Lake Placid bike course!
After climbing out of Jay, it was time for a little descending.
But we had more climbing (this is looking backwards) back to Lake Placid from Wilmington.
Amazing waterfall views on the way back into Lake Placid!
Beautiful views on the Ironman Lake Placid bike course!

Run: 7.96 miles

Views from my run on River Road (part of the Ironman Lake Placid run course).
Views from my run on River Road (part of the Ironman Lake Placid run course).

I forgot to take pics of my run around Mirror Lake 😦

Strength Training: 10 minutes of core almost daily

Weekly Totals: 12 hours & 13 minutes

Weekly Positives:

Soaking in the beauty of Mirror Lake!

Getting to explore the Olympic venues!

The Ice Hockey venue where Miracle on Ice took place!
Being tourists in Lake Placid
The Ski jump!
Standing on the podium for the ski jump
Overcoming fears and going to the top of the ski jump to look out over Lake Placid and surrounding areas.

Free music on the lake on Tuesday night!

A beautiful night for a free concert on the lake!

Eating at some great places:

Sitting on the deck overlooking the lake at The Cottage
Selfie on the dock at The Cottage
Enjoying a drink at the Blue Line Brewery in Saranac Lake.
Emma’s ice cream (don’t worry…it is dairy free for me)
Big Slide Brewery has some great pizza options and some pretty tasty craft brews also!

Doing laundry…

Meeting Amy Farrell…one of my Coeur Sports teammates!

This lady is AMAZING!

Last day in Lake Placid:

Soaking in the views one last time at Mirror Lake

Quote of the Week:

“The best gifts in the world are not in the material objects one can buy from the store, but in the memories we make with the people we love!” ~Amanda Boyarshinov

Vermont Track Cat Training Camp

Last weekend was spent exploring Stowe, Vermont and surrounding areas thanks to Coach Kelly with Track Cat Fitness. This experience was beyond my wildest expectations! It was challenging, beautiful, full of laughs, and loads of fun!

Thursday:

We arrived in Stowe around 3 pm and unloaded All. The. Gear! It was SO amazing to get to meet Coach Kelly in person and I am so grateful that we all had the opportunity to stay at her house…this allowed for bonding among the athletes that were at camp! After everyone arrived, we had an amazing home cooked meal and Coach Kelly talked bike handling skills + bike technology.

Friday:

We had all of the gear loaded and ready to roll out at 7 am for a long ride followed by a short swim. The Iron Hippie and I had a 5 hour ride and it was FULL of climbing! These views…we have NOTHING like them in Iowa and while it was challenging, it was absolutely stunning! I set new power and heart rate thresholds climbing up Smuggler’s Notch and the descent was just as spectacular! The sag support during this training camp was the best ever! Nick (Coach Kelly’s husband), Dave (Coach Kelly’s father), and Dianne (Coach Kelly’s mother) went above and beyond to make this training camp experience like none other! As athletes, we saw sag support roughly every 3-5 miles. The Iron Hippie and I got lost three times on the ride, but were quickly tracked down by our sag support and set straight on the course again. When we got to the top of Smuggler’s Notch, we had some lunch food, regrouped, and set off for the descent. Instead of ending where we started, the Iron Hippie and I set off for route 12 to add a couple of hours of ride time. At 2 pm, Nick met us and picked us up to take us to the pond for some open water swim skills practice.

Riding in Vermont up to Smuggler’s Notch! Epic climbs and views!
Ready to roll!
Now for the fun part!
Lots of climbing!
We made it to the top of Smuggler’s Notch!
The top of Smuggler’s Notch is beautiful!
Potty break!
Meeting new friends at the top of Smuggler’s Notch!
Getting photo bombed by Coach Kelly!
Figuring out who is going where and doing what for the next couple of hours while the Iron Hippie and I finish our ride.
Beautiful views of Vermont along our ride!

After almost 80 miles of riding LOTS of hills, we hopped in the lake for some skills work! We practiced fast swim starts, swimming without goggles, and getting beat up by others while swimming.

Coach watched us all swim and gave us all suggestions on our form and comfort level in the water!

When we arrived back at Coach Kelly’s house, everyone unloaded all the gear, showered, and re-fueled with an amazing home cooked pasta dinner thanks to Dave and Dianne’s spectacular cooking, we called it a night and slept peacefully after a full day of exercise!

This is what it looks like when 7 athletes dry all their gear after a full day of training!
So grateful for Dave and Dianne! Yummy food and AMAZING sag support!
Yummy home cooked food!

Saturday:

We were ready to roll out for a long endurance swim followed by a shorter (yet equally as challenging) bike ride by 7 am. We arrived at the Waterbury Reservoir, donned our wetsuits and hopped into the water blanketed with a dense layer of fog.

A blanket of fog sat on top of the water at the Waterbury Reservoir.
Open water endurance swim at the Waterbury Reservoir. Thanks to Nick and Dave for kayaking next to us while we swam.

After the swim, we changed clothes, refueled, and loaded up to head to the start of the App Gap climbing day.

Refueling post endurance swim.
Loaded up and ready to get to the start of day 2 climbing.

When we got to the start of the ride, we had a few mechanical issues that needed to be tended to…2 bikes had flat tires that needed to be changed.

The Iron Hippie changed Coach Kelly’s flat tire.
All ready to ride and then…

We were all ready to roll out and I noticed something rubbing on my bike…it was the derailleur. Nick tried to make some adjustments, but the problem was bigger than his scope, so we loaded Mojo onto the back of one of the sag vehicles and Nick drove Mojo and me to Fit Werks in Waitsfield, Vermont to have them take a look at the derailleur. I’m so grateful for their flexibility in getting me in right away, putting a new derailleur on Mojo, adding a link to her chain, and making sure she shifts well before getting dropped off with the rest of our group to ride up App Gap. Nick dropped Mojo and me off at the base of App Gap and Mojo and I began our climb STRAIGHT UP right out of the gate! Immediately after I started, I realized my bike technology wasn’t working…no power, no cadence, no speed, no distance, no heart rate…basically I just had the time it took me to ride the 5 miles up App Gap from where Nick dropped us off. I was bummed that I didn’t have any stats for this ride as I felt it was much harder than Friday’s ride and really wanted stats, but was glad I was able to ride on RPE. If my bike technology doesn’t work on race day, I know I can successfully finish the bike by listening to my body.

So grateful to the men at Fit Werks for fixing Mojo and getting us back out riding!
Climbing App Gap…5 miles of continuous climbing.
Just keep climbing!
Getting to the top of App Gap was tough, but these view were worth the climb!
Views from the top of App Gap!
Refueling at the top of App Gap and chatting with Coach Kelly about the climb.
Meeting new friends at the top of App Gap!

With the steepness of this terrain and the less than ideal road conditions I opted to not descend this road. I didn’t want to risk anything being only 3 weeks out from race day. A few of the campers rode down App Gap and then we all met at a coffee shop to regroup and head back to Coach Kelly’s house.

Regrouping at the coffee shop

After unloading all the gear, showering, and dinner, we were lucky to have Carol do an educational session on orthopedic medicine.

Carol talking knees 😉

We followed this up with s’mores by the campfire before heading to bed.

Sunday:

We woke up with the sun, ate some breakfast, and headed out for our last long run before race day! We ran 2.5 hours along the trail through Stowe along the river. It was a beautiful morning for a run!

Running with my Fave in Stowe!
The trail is beautiful!
Views from our run
That is a wrap!

We met up with the rest of the campers at the local coffee shop and then headed back to Coach Kelly’s to pack up and continue on our NE adventures!

Okoboji Triathlon 2017 Race Report

This is just a few weeks late, but better late than never! I raced the Okoboji Triathlon on July 15 and it was so much fun to go short, fast, hard, and have my family cheering for me on bike and run course! This race has a special place in my heart as I get to go home, home to race! It is unique, because it is between the sprint and Olympic distance.

Who’s ready to race?! We are!

Swim: 960 yards in 17:37 (1:50/100 yards average pace)

The women 40+ were in the last swim wave, so I had lots of people to pass during the entire event. Once I settled into my swim pace, I started pacing many people in the previous waves. This swim was about 1 minute faster than last year without a wetsuit this year.

Gear: Coeur Sports tri kit, Roka Viper Elite swim skin, Roka X1 Light Vermilion goggles, SBR tri slide

T1: 2:57

After exiting the swim, there is about a 200 yard run up to transition. I thought I was being super speedy in transition, but apparently I wasn’t as fast as I thought I was! My transition time was a bit slower than last year.

Bike: 18 miles in 54:10 (19.9 mph average speed)

I quickly settled in on the bike and began to climb right away. I was very aware of surrounding athletes and was SUPER pumped that not one athlete passed me on the bike! The last 6 miles of the bike is full of short, punchy hill climbs, and I was ready to punch back! With about 1.5 miles left to ride, I saw my sisters, nieces, and Dad on the course cheering me on!

Gear: Coeur Sports tri kit, Specialized Transition bike, Specialized Evade bike helmet, Specialized bike shoes

Nutrition: Breakthrough Nutrition – NBS Hydration

T2: 1:11

I quickly racked my bike, changed my shoes, and took off on the run!

Run: 4.5 miles in 38:48 (8:37 min/mile average pace)

I’ve run this course many times and knew there were many rolling hills, so I didn’t push as hard out of T2 as I probably should have and could have. About 1 mile into the run I was passed by the only female who passed me for the entire run (this cost me 1st in my age group and 10th overall female). I should have hung onto her to see what my body was capable of, but I let her go. With about 1.5 miles to the finish line, I again saw my sisters, nieces, and Dad. I was revived with their high-5s and cheers! I allowed that to carry me all the way to the finish line!

Gear:Coeur Sports tri kit, Newton Kismets

Nutrition: Motts fruit snacks

Overall: 1:54:40 2nd age group (F40-49) and 11th overall female finish

2nd place AG at the Okoboji Triathlon!

I am super grateful to my amazing family and husband, to Coach Kelly at Track Cat Fitness for helping be come #trackcatstrong this year, to my sponsors Coeur Sports, Roka Sports, Sound Probiotics, Breakthrough Nutrition, and Kyle’s Bikes, and to Dr. Chris Feil with Team Chiropractic and Nick at Vitality Massage for keeping me healthy! It takes a village and I’m incredibly grateful for mine!

3 weeks ’til #IMMT: Northeast + Canada Trication Part 1

What a week! Full of travel, fun, laughs, training camp, and adventures! Other than traveling over 1500 miles by car, this is brief rundown of my week…

Swim: 6976 yards

Starting the day off right! #swimlove with my fave for some #mondaymotivation
Morning swim in 86*F water in La Porte, Indiana with my fave! #toohotforlapswimming
Open water endurance swim at Track Cat Training Camp!

Bike: 98.4 miles

Last workout in Iowa for a while! #tuesdaytimetrial with my fave!
Long ride in Vermont at the Track Cat Training Camp on Friday up to Smuggler’s Notch! Epic climbs and views!
Climbing my way up App Gap in Vermont at the Track Cat Training Camp on Saturday…That. Was. HARD! So much fun at the top!

Run: 16.7 miles

Last long run before #IMMT in Stowe, Vermont…now it is time to taper and soak up all this training!

Strength Training: 10 minutes of core strength almost daily

Weekly Totals: 12 hours & 46 minutes

Weekly Positives:

I will have a separate post on the Track Cat Training Camp later this week, but it was SO much fun, challenging, beautiful, and a truly amazing experience!

#trackcatstrong

Stopping at Niagara Falls on our way out to Vermont…We have never been here before and it was beautiful!

Riding a ferry across Lake Champlain from Vermont into New York…that was the first time I’ve ever driven a car onto a boat and taken a fairy ride! It felt good to get out and stretch the legs a bit!

Arriving in Lake Placid…This is where we will spend the next week of our trication!

Getting our bib numbers for Ironman Mont Tremblant!! It is getting so close to race day!! I can’t believe it!!

Quote of the Week:

“Blessed are the curious for they shall have adventures!” ~Lovelle Drachman