2021 week 29: race week

Last week was race week for Ironman 70.3 Ohio. I will get a full race report put together, but for now, my race was not what I had trained for, but it was the race I was given. I am incredibly grateful that I got to cross another finish line and had the privilege of racing.

Quote of the week:

“There will come a day when I can’t do this. Today is not that day.”

~Unknown

Swim: 6509 yards

Raise your hand if you’re ready to race this weekend!

Bike: 95.3 miles

So grateful to get to spend time with my Coeur Sports teammate, Akira, on Saturday before the race.

Run: 18.0 miles

Running with my fave in Springfield, OH was one of my favorite runs last week.

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily (except race day)

Weekly Totals: 12 hours & 31 minutes

Attitude of Gratitude:

Thank you Vanessa for these beauties!
Thank you Nick, with Vitality Massage, for getting me race ready!
Good race juju from Coeur Sports.
My cup runneth over! So many hugs from my Coeur Sports sisters on race weekend!
Thank you to our support system! You all are the BEST…and make me smile!
We have the BEST home stay in Ohio! Thank you so much Kimra!

What were your highlights from week 29 of 2021?!

2021 week 28: no place like home

Last week I put some finishing touches on my training before Ironman 70.3 Ohio. But the highlight was that we got to go back home home to visit my parents for the first time since September 2019! So grateful for the opportunity to be back at home!

Quote of the week:

“There’s no place like home.”

~Dorthy from the Wizard of Oz

Swim: 11,180 yards

My favorite swim last week was on Saturday morning. Dad took us out on the lake and boated beside us while we swam nearly 3 miles along the shores of West Lake Okoboji. Thank you Dad! You’re the best!

Seize the opportunity!

So grateful for nearly 3 peaceful miles of #swimlove at home home in Okoboji. ⚡️🔥

Bike: 79.8 miles

Wednesday was my last big workout before beginning the taper for Ironman 70.3 Ohio. I had a triple brick on the schedule. Thanks to thunderstorms, I completed this entire workout on the trainer/treadmill.

That glow and glistening look comes with hard work and committing to the discomfort as I put some finishing touches on this bold journey to the Ohio 70.3 finish line. The hay is in the barn and I’m ready to light a massive fire this weekend! #LFG ⚡️🔥

Run: 28.0 miles

Monday I had 14 miles after work. It was humid, but thankfully not blazing hot or sunny. After a 3 mile warm up, it was time to start picking up the effort. This increase in effort led to some paces I’m very proud of! 🔥 I didn’t want to go out the door for this run…my mind just wasn’t in it. Thankfully during the warm up I was able to redirect my thinking to my intentional thoughts and ended up with a great + solid run!

“I set goals on purpose and with purpose.” ⚡️🔥

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 15 hours & 19 minutes
30 minutes of full body strength training
2×30 minutes of yoga

Attitude of Gratitude:

All the snuggles! 🥰
Grateful that my body allows me to do this! Triple brick in the bank! ⚡️🔥
Getting my squeeze on post triple brick. Thank you Normatec Recovery!
More snuggles! 🥰
WUT?! I got a rolldown slot to Ironman 70.3 World Championships! #soexcited 🥳
Happy early birthday to the Iron Hippie! 🥳 #firealarmwentoff
Thank you Dad for boating next to us for safety! 💙#happyheart
Being on the water is my happy place! Love, love, LOVE! 🥰
My heart is full!

Morning swim with my niece, Isabella, and the Iron Hippie in West Lake Okoboji. 💙💛
Some family miles by the lake in Okoboji before heading back home. 💙💛

What were your highlights from week 28 of 2021?!

2021 week 27: build

Last week was focused on continuing to build my engine so it is primed and ready for Ironman 70.3 Ohio in just 2 weeks! Eeeekkk…how are we only 2 weeks away from race day?!

Quote of the week:

“Today is your opportunity to build the tomorrow you want.”

~Ken Poirot

Swim: 8615 yards

Tuesday I had a rock solid swim! I was consistent, I was confident, I played chase in the water…it was SO, SO awesome!

  • Warm up:
    • 300 kick with fins (20 seconds rest)
    • 300 pull (20 seconds rest)
    • 300 swim (20 seconds rest)
    • 4×100 descending paces/increasing effort (20 seconds rest)
  • Main Set:
    • 2×800 Z4 effort (30 seconds rest)
    • 400 Z4 effort (30 seconds rest)
  • Cool down:
    • 100 any
How long do you let yourself stay in the discomfort?

The discomfort is part of the journey. It opens the door to new possibilities and adventures. The discomfort is where the growth + magic happens. Don’t shy away from the discomfort. Chase it! Embrace it! Own it! #LFG ⚡️🔥

Bike: 141 miles

Thursday we rode our first century of 2021! It was such a great day! The weather was perfect, the roads were open, and the heart was full!

What a great day to be on 2 wheels! Live life out loud and to the fullest! The open roads make me feel alive! I’m so grateful to get to feel alive for 100 miles Thursday! ⚡️🔥

Run: 19.4 miles

Friday was a double run day! We haven’t had much rain this year and are in a drought, so the 2+ inches of rain we got Thursday evening through Saturday morning were much needed. BUT these storms put me on the treadmill for both my 7 mile am run and my 8 mile pm run.

Same effort + same average HR for both runs = well oiled Diesel engine ⚡️🔥

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 16 hours & 13 minutes
2×30 minutes of full body strength training

Attitude of Gratitude:

Thank you to Nick, with Vitality Massage Ames for keeping me healthy and active!
#1stCenturyOf2021
All the snuggles…she can’t keep her eyes open and refuses to lay her head down. #puresweetness
Sunday I got to cheer the Iron Hippie on to a 3rd place podium finish at the Iowa Games Sprint Triathlon. Boom!

What were your highlights from week 26 of 2021?!

2021 week 26: fire in my heart

Last week I started my last build into Ironman 70.3 Ohio, which I am SUPER excited about. Ironman 70.3 Des Moines lit a fire in my heart and I am ready to buckle down and excited to put it all out there in 3 weeks!

Quote of the week:

“Each one of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It’s our goal in life to find it and keep it lit.”

~Mary Lou Retton

Swim: 8418 yards

Thursday morning I swam Ironman 800s in the 50 meter pool and crushed this swim! My first 800 was 16:21.7 (2:03/100 m average pace). My second 800 was 16:06.1 (2:01/100 m average pace). My last 800 was 15:41.0 (1:58/100 m average pace). I feel really good about this swim as my average pace for my 1.2 mile swim at IM “70.3” DSM was 2:12/100 m. Time to translate this swim to my next race!

  • Warm up:
    • 200 swim
    • 200 kick
    • 200 drills
    • 200 pull
    • 200 swim
  • Main Set:
    • 3×800 descending (1 min rest)
#intentionalthinking REALLY works! 3×800 m descendings today…when you start strong, it’s important to keep the focus so you can improve with each one. My last 800 meters was 40 seconds faster than my first this morning. ⚡️🔥 #LFG

Bike: 198 miles

Saturday and Sunday we rode 71.3 miles each day! We chose to ride the same route both days to compare effort (power output). We had more wind on Sunday, but were done well before noon.

Saturday’s 71.3 miles on the open roads!
Sunday’s 71.3 miles on the open roads!

Run: 21.0 miles

Wednesday was a double run day! My 7 morning endurance miles were a struggle, but I was so grateful to have help from friends in very soupy conditions. My 3 afternoon solo miles at a 🔥 pace in the heat of the day were AMAZING. Moral…don’t allow one “bad” workout alter your plans…you just never know what’s around the next corner!

#intentionalthinking works! #LFG ⚡️

SUP: 0.96 miles

So grateful for any amount of time I get to spend on the water!

#happyheart

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 21 hours & 5 minutes
2×30 minutes of full body strength training
2×30 minutes of yoga

Attitude of Gratitude:

Grateful to have qualified for Age Group National Championships! (No…I won’t be racing as there are no slots open.)
Getting to swim, bike, and run in one day… #happyheart
Thank you Robin for running some miles with me!
Getting my squeeze on in my Normatec boots while getting all of the snuggles from our baby girl!

What were your highlights from week 26 of 2021?! What lights the fire in your heart?!

2021 week 25: race week

Last week was race week of a different sort. As race organizers for the Ames Triathlon, we were in the finishing stages last week as we kicked off the race on Sunday morning.

Quote of the week:

“OMG! OMG! It’s race week.”

~ME

Swim: 2953 yards

Saturday morning we got to swim in the 50m pool with my Coeur Sports sister, Sarah, who came to stay with us for the weekend. I love the 50m pool!

  • Warm up:
    • 300 easy swim
    • 4×50 drills
    • 200 swim
    • 100 kick
  • Main Set:
    • 4×100 easy (20 sec rest)
    • 4×100 moderate (20 sec rest)
    • 4×100 fast (20 sec rest)
    • 500 pull
  • Cool Down:
    • 200 any stroke
Playtime with friends in the 50m pool!

Bike: 0 miles

Mojo didn’t get any love last week as all of the last minute race prep took precedence.

Run: 3.01 miles

Wednesday I ran home from work in the heat of the day to continue acclimating to the warmer temps. It was toasty, but I kept the run short and my pace easy + steady.

Heat acclimation run!

SUP: 1.89 miles

Spent some time on the water Tuesday before the storms rolled in. It is so peaceful and calming to be on the water!

Pure joy! 🥰🐶

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 3 hours & 57 minutes

Attitude of Gratitude:

Getting the post race tightness/soreness worked out by Nick with Vitality Massage Ames.
This sweet thing loves to ride on my board with me! Thank you Ruffwear for making it so easy for her to get on after she swims! 🥰🐶
This little nugget is the snuggliest thing! Love her SO much! 🥰🐶
More cuddle time with our baby girl! 🥰🐶
Testing out the podium for Sunday! 🥰🐶
Getting transition set so athletes can fill it in just a few minutes!
Who’s ready to race?! We are ready to get the Ames Triathlon party started!
Photo credit: Dave Mable

What were your highlights from week 25 of 2021?

privilege

“Racing is a privilege and nothing is guaranteed. Putting myself in discomfort is a privilege.”

~ME

Cliff Notes Version: I GOT to race Ironman “70.3” Des Moines IN REAL LIFE on Sunday, June 20! 💙💛

  • logistically, things were spread WAY OUT and there was a LOT of walking before and after the race
  • athletes had to park about 1.5 miles from transition area and walk in
  • there was nearly a 3 hour delay from the original start time due to storms (with thunder and lightening)
  • the swim was 1.2 miles, the bike was 27.1 miles, and the run was 13.1 miles (the bike was shortened due to road closure permits not being able to be extended)
  • transition opened at 8:45 am and was spaced out normally (pre-Covid)
  • by 9:00 am they were already walking athletes down to Gray’s Lake
  • the walk from transition to the swim start was about 1 mile
  • the water temp was 78.3 (wetsuit optional…I wore my Roka swimskin)
  • the swim start was self seeded with 3 athletes sent off every 3 seconds
  • the swim was cloudy, but not rainy
  • it was 0.58 miles from the swim exit to T1
  • the roads for the 27.1 mile bike were smooth with rolling bumps (hills)
  • there was one water/aid station on the bike somewhere between mile 15 and 20
  • the run was HOT AF with full sun and SO HUMID after the morning rains…felt like we were running on the surface of the sun
  • there were aid stations on the run nearly every mile with water, gatorade, gels, ice, bananas, cookies, etc.
  • there was a buffet line with burgers, hot dogs, veggie burgers, chips, bananas, and lots of beverage options at the finish
  • there was a 2 mile walk (or shuttles would take masked athletes only…no spectators/volunteers) back to transition to get gear and then another 1.5 mile walk back to the parking lot
Stepping onto the red carpet was a privilege! ⚡️
Photo credit: FinisherPix

Longer Version: I GOT to race my first “70.3” distance race since July 2018.

Saturday night we got notification that the race start would be delayed one hour due to the strong possibility of thunderstorms, so we got to sleep in an extra hour on race morning. Since we live about 40 miles from the race, we stayed at home. Sleeping in your own bed before a big race (and crazy day) is priceless! We were up by 4 am and on the road by 5 am. At about 5:15 am as we were driving south and watching the MAGNIFICENT lightening show, we received notification that we were further delayed, to stay in a sheltered location, and to wait for further updates to come by 7:30 am.

Once we arrived at the parking lot, we listened to music, danced a little (as much as you can in a car), and chilled listening to the rain + thunder as we continued to watch an amazing lightening show. We joked that we haven’t had rain in over month and Mother Nature chose race day to finally bless us with a little rain (not nearly enough to even turn the grass from brown to green, but hey…we’ll take what we can get). As we were waiting in the Volunteer parking lot (the Iron Hippie was kayak support again for this race), a volunteer came by in the pouring rain and gave him a breakfast sandwich. Such a great way to take care of the volunteers.

Here we wait! So grateful for the amazing communication from the race committee as they prioritized safety while trying to get as much of the race in as possible.

We eventually left the parking lot and headed to a gas station to use the restrooms and then decided to park in the athlete parking lot (as it was paved…not gravel…and was a closer walk to transition).

At 7:23 am we received notification that transition would open at 8:45 am and the race would start at 9:30 am for the professional athletes with the age group athletes starting at 9:40 am. The Iron Hippie had to be to the water by 8:00 am, so he headed out shortly after this announcement. I did some last minute fueling and race prep before making my way to transition. I was incredibly conscious of not getting sucked into the mind drama of the surrounding athletes…so much complaining about things out of our control. Hey folks…we GET to race today! Privilege! ⚡️ I put everything inside of the garbage bag so that it would stay mostly dry until I was ready for it at my transition location.

Garbage bags to keep things as dry as possible.

I hit the Kybo one more time, donned my Roka swimskin, and made my way to the swim line up in transition. There was about a one mile walk from transition to the swim start during which time it quit raining. Once we were at the swim start, I used the Kybo one last time and then got in line for the swim start.

Swim: (42:25 for 1.2 miles at 2:12/100 m average pace…58/168 F40-44, 225/828 F, 875/2352 overall)

After the National Anthem, the professional men were off, followed by the professional women 5 minutes later. When the age group athletes started at 9:40 am, athletes were sent off every 3 seconds. I felt strong and confident in the water, passing lots of green swim caps along the way. I didn’t have much congestion in the water, which made me feel good about where I had self seeded. As we made our way around the last swim buoy, the chop on the water was very noticeable! I think the winds had picked up quite a bit. It was great to plant my feet on the ground and make the long trek to Mojo.

I felt strong in the water as I passed lots of green swim caps. Privilege! ⚡️
Photo credit: FinisherPix

T1: (7:06)

T1 was 0.58 miles long…hence the LONG transition time! As I exited the swim, and ran up onto the trail toward transition, I got my swimskin off just below my hips as I was running, stopped quick to strip it all the way off so I didn’t have to run in it, and removed my goggles + swim cap while I continued running to my transition spot. I put on my socks + bike shoes, donned my helmet and clear glasses, threw my run nutrition in my (wrong) pockets, grabbed Mojo, and off we went!

Let’s do this! ⚡️
Photo Credit: Elaina Wild

Bike: (1:21:36 for 27.1 miles at 20.19 mph average speed…46/168 F40-44, 204/828 F, 1065/2352 overall)

The sky was a bit ominous at the start of the bike, but the clouds parted and really heated things up.
Photo credit: Ruth Rickey

After crossing the mount line and getting on Mojo, we cruised our way out of Water Works. The majority of the road surfaces were SO smooth! Shortly after starting the ride, the clouds separated and the sun came out. I wished I would have put my Roka SL-1X sunnies out in transition instead of my clears, but I couldn’t change it, so I went with it. I saw about 5 people riding who had forgotten to take their swimskin all the way off in T1. I also passed a lady on a B cycle bike cruising along. She was killing it!

Enjoying the privilege of racing! ⚡️
Photo Credit: FinisherPix

It was an out and back course that was shortened to 27.1 due to the delayed start and not being able to extend road closure permits. Being an out and back course was a great way to cheer on friends who were also racing. I didn’t look at my power output/speed/cadence at all during this ride. I was so grateful to be racing that I only focused on playing and having fun. As I played chase trying to catch different people in front of me, I kept asking myself if I could go just a little bit harder in that moment. I felt SO strong on this bike ride, which put me in a great mental state heading back into T2.

This was a super fast and fun ride where I really pushed myself! Privilege! ⚡️
Photo credit: FinisherPix

T2: (2:49)

I quickly racked my bike, changed into my Newton running shoes, grabbed my visor + race belt + hand-held water bottle, and exited T2.

Run: (2:11:10 for 13.1 miles at 10:01/mile average pace…45/168 F40-44, 212/828 F, 857/2352 overall)

As I exited T2, I knew I would have to be smart about my pacing and monitor my HR as it was HOT + HUMID…Like running on the surface of the sun HOT!

This run was a 2 loop course. Shortly after leaving Water Works and entering the trails around Gray’s Lake, I saw the Iron Hippie. He had just finished up with swim support and was going to load the kayak onto the car. It was nice to see him as I started the run. After seeing him, I was adjusting my tri top + race belt when I noticed that I didn’t have any of my run nutrition with me. I had put 3 gels in my tri top pocket in T1 before heading out on the bike. (I always take my run nutrition with me on the bike so that I can’t accidentally forget it in T2 when my brain becomes more foggy.) I know not to put my gels in my tri top pockets because they are not snug enough to hold them safely, but for whatever reason I didn’t put them in my tri shorts while in T1 and I lost all of them somewhere out on the bike course without my knowing. So here I am out on the run course with no run nutrition while running on the surface of the sun. Oh…and those Roka sunnies I wished I’d had on the bike, now I was really wishing I’d had them on the run! I knew there was nothing I could do to change the fact that I had no run nutrition nor Roka sunnies, so I let those negative thoughts go and reminded myself that I GET to race today. When I approached the first aid station, I looked to see what was offered so I could problem solve before needing nutrition at mile 3.5/4…bananas…that became my fuel for the rest of the day. Thank you Ironman for providing fuel out on the run course!

Here we go! ⚡️
Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

It was fun to see other athletes and cheer them on. After I turned around the first cone, I saw a Coeur Sports teammate, Michelle, making her way out to the first turn around. “Love you Michelle!” Shortly after mile 2, I saw another one of my Coeur Sports teammates, Jess (also a pro triathlete). She was on her second loop and running for a top 10 finish amongst the pro women. It was great to cheer for her! I continued to race from a place of fun + gratitude and reminded myself that it was a privilege to GET to race today. I took in water at every aid station and sipped from my water bottle throughout the run to stay hydrated. At mile 4 I took in about 3/4 of a banana (that was all I could get down the hatch before having entering the last trash zone). This is where Jess passed me as she was at mile 11. GO JESS GO!

There wasn’t much shade on this run course. As I was climbing up over the bridge by MLK Parkway heading toward downtown, I could feel my HR really climbing. When I looked down at my HR, it was nearing 170 bpm. My goal was to keep my HR between 155-165 for the duration of the run, so I knew I needed to take a quick walking break to let my HR come back down just a bit.

Downtown felt like a sauna, but there were so many cheers downtown from people I knew and strangers I didn’t. What a great distraction from that heat! After turning around the cone downtown to head back out for loop #2, I saw a sign that made me giggle… “Dig deeper than a kid going for boogers.” Thank you random stranger for that boost!

Run felt like we were running on the surface of the sun, so I raced smart and got it done. Privilege! ⚡️
Photo credit: FinisherPix

At about mile 7, I hammered down another 3/4 of a banana to get in the calories. It was shortly after this that I needed to let my HR come down a bit, so I walked and helped a fellow athlete by carrying her water bottle while she adjusted her onesie. I trudged on and eventually saw the Iron Hippie again before briefly walking with another friend on the bridge of Gray’s Lake to encourage and support her for just a minute before continuing on. The second half of the run had more walk breaks, but I kept them short as I reminded myself often that I am here to do my best. I have goals, which I set on purpose and with purpose.

At mile 10, I took in another 3/4 of a banana and continued to mostly run with short walking stints toward the finish. Making the last turn toward the finish chute was the best feeling in the world! I tried to pick up my pace just a bit as I hit the red carpet, but my legs immediately cramped and said, “Nope! We’ll get you across the finish at this pace, but don’t you dare try to go any faster!”

I GOT the privilege of racing and stepping onto that red carpet for the first time in 23 months! ⚡️

Overall: (4:25:05…34/168 F40-44, 156/828 F, 773/2352 overall)

I am incredibly grateful that I had the privilege to race on Sunday! I am super happy with how the day unfolded, the adjustments I made throughout the day to get to that red carpet, and the challenges I overcame to get to this finish line. I have some things to improve on before the next one, but this experience at Ironman “70.3” Des Moines lit a fire under my ass. The fires are burning HOT inside of me for what is to come!

I’m so grateful for races, finish lines, friends, and the privilege we were given on Sunday! ⚡️
Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

Gear: Coeur Sports triathlon shorts, Coeur Sports triathlon tank with shelf bra, Roka X-1 Goggles, Roka Women’s Viper Swimskin, Specialized Transition tri bike, Specialized S-works Evade helmet, Specialized Torch 2.0 Road Shoes, Coeur Sports visor, Newton Kismet running shoes, Orange Mud hand held water bottle

2021 week 24: race week

Last week was race week and it FLEW by!

Quote of the week:

“OMG! OMG! It’s race week.”

~ME

Swim: 7448 yards

Thursday I had a race prep swim!

  • Warm up:
    • 300 easy with fins
    • 10×50 drills
    • 4×50 descending times (increasing effort) (20 sec rest between each)
  • Main Set:
    • 4 times through:
      • 50 Z5 effort (10 sec rest)
      • 150 Z4 effort (30 sec rest)
  • Cool Down:
    • 200 any stroke
Race Prep! #LFG ⚡️

Bike: 82.9 miles

Saturday we got to ride a part of the IM 70.3 Des Moines bike route with Coeur Sports teammates and friends. It was SO MUCH FUN! We definitely need to do more bike meet ups!

Two wheels with friends on roads as smooth as butter…YEEESSSSS PLEASE!!!

Run: 21.4 miles

Friday morning I GOT to run with Robin! Thanks to Covid, it has been far too long since we were last able to run together! So grateful for her and our runs together!

Running with friends is ALWAYS best!

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily
2×30 minutes of yoga

Weekly Totals: 13 hours & 19 minutes

Attitude of Gratitude:

Always ready…just incase! 🥰
So grateful for all of the snuggles this little sweet pea dishes out! 🥰
Mojo is getting all shiny for race day!
Kyle with Kyle’s Bikes gave Mojo his pre-race blessing!
Getting my pre-race Normatec Recovery squeeze on and snuggles!
Meeting up with Coeur Sports sisters is always a race weekend highlight!
Mojo got to hang out with all of her friends in transition!
I GOT the privilege of racing and stepping onto that red carpet for the first time in 23 months!

What were your highlights from week 24 of 2021?!

2021 week 23: crank up the furnace

Last week summer really arrived and cranked the furnace way up! There were a lot of opportunities to acclimate to this warmer weather, so I took advantage of it.

Quote of the week:

“A woman is like a tea bag – you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water.”

~Eleanor Roosevelt

Swim: 9724 yards

Saturday morning I got to swim outdoors in the 50 m pool and it was MAGNIFICENT! Our outdoor pool wasn’t open last summer, (#covid) so it has been just shy of 2 years since I have gotten to swim outdoors on the 50 m distance.

  • Warm up:
    • 300 kick with fins
    • 300 pull
    • 300 swim
    • 4×100 descending times (increasing effort) (20 sec rest between each)
  • Main Set:
    • 2×800 Z4 effort (30 sec rest)
    • 400 Z4 effort (30 sec rest)
  • Cool Down:
    • 100 any stroke
I’m SO grateful the 50 m outdoor pool is open this summer!!

Bike: 98.3 miles

I got some good outdoor riding in last week. It was a really warm week, which was good for acclimating for race season!

The heat was cranked up this afternoon, so Coeur Sports fire in the sky was a fitting choice to help acclimate to this heat! 🔥

Run: 14.5 miles

I didn’t get one picture of any running last week…SLACKER in the social media avenue, but I had some really good runs. One 8 mile run outside after work was a bit of a sweat fest, but it was a great acclimation workout!

SUP: 3.88 miles

We got out a few times on the water, which TOTALLY filled my heart and soul.

Gratitude overload for the peace the water brings me!

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily
2×30 minutes of strength
30 minutes of yoga

Weekly Totals: 16 hours & 9 minutes

Attitude of Gratitude:

Thank you Nick at Vitality Massage Ames for keeping me healthy and active!!
This girl is SUCH a snuggler! 🥰
Thank you Normatec Recovery for helping me stay healthy and active!
My happy place!

What were your highlights from week 23 of 2021?! When the furnace gets cranked up do you prefer working out inside or outside?! Why?!

#LFG

“Racing teaches us to challenge ourselves. It teaches us to push beyond where we thought we could go. It helps us to find out what we are made of. This is what we do. This is what it’s all about.”

~PattiSue Plumer

Cliff Notes Version: I GOT to race the Pigman Olympic distance triathlon IN REAL LIFE Sunday, June 6! 💙💛

  • it was hot…the air temp by the end of the race was in the upper 80s with mostly sunny skies and pretty gusty winds
  • the swim start was a self seeded rolling start
  • transition was spaced out normally (pre-Covid)
  • there was no water/aid station on the bike (as is pretty typical for shorter distance triathlons)
  • there were two self-serve aid stations on the run (volunteers were filling cups, but not handing them out)
  • we were given disposable timing chips
  • there was a buffet line with pasta, bread, chips, bananas, and lots of beverage options
  • there was an award ceremony with people getting to stand on “podiums” again
  • there were lots of door prizes that were given away

Longer Version: I GOT to race two weekends in a row! Since racing from a place of fun + gratitude served me so well last week, I opted to race with this same focus for this Oly.

We were able to park right next to the transition area, which was super convenient. I went to packet pick-up (by transition), saw my Coeur sister Sarah, got checked-in, then walked back to the car to get all of the stickers on the bikes, helmets, etc. The Iron Hippie wasn’t racing this event, but instead volunteering as kayak support in the water, so I was on my own to get everything all ready to race.

I got to set up a transition area again! Oh…and how lucky am I that I was right on the end of our transition row?!

As we were setting up our transition area, they made the announcement that the water temp was 70*F so it would be a wetsuit legal swim. After hugging friends I haven’t seen in person since before the pandemic, setting up my transition area, doing the neoprene shimmy in my Roka wetsuit, and taking in a gel, I was ready for a practice swim. The water in this lake was much warmer than last week. It was nice to get a little warm up swim done. While we were at the practice swim, Sarah and I met a new friend…Natasha.

Meeting new friends is THE BEST!! Photo credit: Dave Mable

Swim: (33:34 for 1500 m at 2:14/100 m average pace…3/10 F40-44, 18/53 F, 62/157 overall)

After the National Anthem, I lined up toward the front of the rolling start as I knew that’s where I belonged and wanted to get going to beat as much heat as possible. I entered the water confident and immediately started bilateral breathing (so I didn’t have a panic attack like last week). Making our way to the first turn buoy was DIRECTLY into the sun, so sighting was a real challenge. When I got to the first turn buoy, I saw the Iron Hippie in his kayak, so without altering my swim stroke, I waved as I swam around the buoy. The swim was pretty uneventful for me until I got back toward the swim exit where the sprint triathlon swimmers were REALLY congested, but I just fought my way through all the way to the swim exit.

Swim exit focus! Photo credit: Dave Mable

T1: (2:47…5/10 F40-44, 30/53 F, 83/157 overall)

As I exited the swim, and ran up the beach, I saw our friend Nancy who came out to cheer me on. It was SO nice to see her! I got my wetsuit off just below my hips and removed my goggles + swim cap as I was running to my transition spot so that when I arrived to my bike, I could quickly get my legs out of my wetsuit. I put on my socks + bike shoes, donned my helmet and Roka sunnies, grabbed Mojo, and off we went!

Bike: (1:16:47 for 24.8 miles at 19.4 mph average speed…2/10 F40-44, 8/53 F, 63/157 overall)

After crossing the mount line and getting on Mojo, we cruised our way out of Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area. This course was the opposite of last week with lots of rolling hills, which I LOVE! It was an out and back course that was done twice, so we got to see a lot of other athletes. It was great to cheer on friends who were also racing. I didn’t look at my power output/speed/cadence at all during this ride. I was so grateful to be racing that I only focused on playing and having fun. As I played chase trying to catch different people in front of me, I kept asking myself if I could go just a little bit harder in that moment.

There was a bit of headwind as we headed back toward Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area, but thankfully the bluff blocked a fair amount of it and it was early enough in the morning that the winds weren’t too strong…yet.

T2: (1:19…2/10 F40-44, 6/53 F, 26/157 overall)

I quickly racked my bike, changed into my Newton running shoes, grabbed my visor + race belt + hand-held water bottle, and exited T2.

Run: (54:40 for 6.2 miles at 8:49/mile average pace…3/10 F40-44, 15/53 F, 73/157 overall)

As I exited T2, I knew this run would be a bit different from last week’s race as it was HOT. Thankfully those winds that the bluff blocked on the bike were out in full force on the run, so we had a built in air conditioning of sorts.

Running is a gift. A gift that has gotten me through many lows and brought me many highs. A gift I will continue to give myself for as long as I physically can. A gift that gives way more than it takes. 💙💛 Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

This run was a 3 loop course. It was fun to see other athletes and cheer them on. During the run, I continued to race from a place of fun + gratitude even as the temps climbed. I kept reminding myself to take it easy for the first loop, build in the second loop, and finish strong in the third loop. I took in water at the aid station and sipped from my water bottle throughout the run to stay hydrated. I also consumed one gel at about mile 2 to give me the energy to stay strong to the end.

Home stretch…right after my spill. Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

As I was running into the finish, I tripped over a cone about 100 m from the finish line. Why?! Well…I was looking backward and talking to a friend who was spectating…basically not looking where I was going. I went down hard, but popped right back up and ran into the finish shoot. Thankfully I only ended up with some minor scrapes and bruising, but that little blunder cost me. While I set another new bike split PR for the Oly distance, I missed an overall Oly distance PR by 4 seconds. That spill…yep…more than a 4 second blunder. Oh…and I missed 1st place by 24 seconds. I have been trying to catch Laura (who got 1st place) for years. I am getting much closer and it won’t be long before I’m on that top step. Laura, I’m coming for ya!

SO MUCH JOY for racing again, finish lines, and pushing my limits! Photo credit: Dave Mable

Overall: (2:49:07…2/10 F40-44, 12/53 F, 60/157 overall)

I raced with a focus on fun + gratitude at the Pigman Olympic Distance Triathlon on Sunday and as a result I got to kiss a pig (my 2nd place AG award was a piggy bank). Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

After the awards ceremony, Sarah and I went out to find Natasha who was struggling to support her to the finish line, which was by far one major highlight to my day!

The best parts of race day were hugging Sarah + meeting Natasha and helping her cross the finish line when the day gave her many challenges. She was the true winner of this race! I love this sport! ⚡️💙💛 Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

Gear: Coeur Sports triathlon shorts, Coeur Sports triathlon tank with shelf bra, Roka X-1 Goggles, Roka Women’s Maverick X Wetsuit, Specialized Transition tri bike, Specialized S-works Evade helmet, Specialized Torch 2.0 Road Shoes, Coeur Sports visor, Newton Kismet running shoes, Roka SL-1X sunnies, Orange Mud hand held water bottle

pumped!

“Racing teaches us to challenge ourselves. It teaches us to push beyond where we thought we could go. It helps us to find out what we are made of. This is what we do. This is what it’s all about.”

~PattiSue Plumer

Cliff Notes Version: I GOT to race Tri Clear Lake Olympic distance triathlon IN REAL LIFE Saturday, May 29! 💙💛

  • the start of the race was delayed an hour due to the cold air temps (we were notified of this change on Friday, so we could sleep in an extra hour)
  • the air temp at the race start was about ~40*F with full sun and light winds
  • the swim was cut from 1500 m to 500 m for the Olympic distance race due to the 62F water temps
  • the swim start was a wave start
  • transition was spaced out normally (pre-Covid)
  • there was no water/aid station on the bike (as is pretty typical for shorter distance triathlons)
  • there were two self-serve aid stations on the run (volunteers were filling cups, but not handing them out)
  • volunteers took our timing chips off of us after we crossed the finish line and put medals around our necks
  • there were little insulated bags with deli sandwiches, chips, grapes, and a granola bar for each athlete
  • there were individually wrapped cookies to select from for each athlete
  • there was plenty of beverage options (water, different flavors of soda, and beer)
  • there was an award ceremony with people getting to stand on podiums again
  • there were lots of door prizes that were given away

Longer Version: I was SO freaking pumped because I GOT to cross a start line and a finish line of an IRL triathlon race on Saturday, May 29! We parked about 2 blocks from the transition area, which was super convenient. We walked to packet pick-up (by transition), got checked-in, picked up our timing chips, then walked back to the car to get all of the stickers on the bikes, helmets, etc. As we were walking to the transition area, there were plenty of people talking about the cold temps, but I didn’t let myself get sucked into that mind drama. I always responded with, “At least it isn’t raining, the sun is shining, and the winds are light.” I was just so pumped to get to race!

I’m glad I remember how to set up a transition area after 21 months away from Tri racing!

As we were setting up our transition area, they made the announcement that the water temp was 62*F and that all athletes would be swimming the 500 meter distance. I will admit I was a bit bummed by this as the longer we were in the water, the more time there was for the air temps to rise, but I immediately decided I was here to have fun and race with gratitude, so I let go of the things that were out of my control. After hugging friends I haven’t seen in person since before the pandemic, setting up my transition area, doing the neoprene shimmy in my Roka wetsuit, and taking in a gel, I was ready for a practice swim. Easing my way down the boat ramp (swim exit) and into the water was a bit shocking, but not nearly as shocking as putting my face in the water. Hello brain freeze! I did a few short out and backs before heading over to the start area for the National Anthem and the start of the race.

Getting to see friends, hug, high-five, and race was such a joy!

Swim: (11:36 for 500 m at 2:19/100 m average pace…6/11 F40-44, 27/66 F, 102/193 overall)

I lined up at the front of our swim wave as I knew that’s where I belonged. As we were sent out into the water, I almost forgot to start my Garmin, but remembered at the last second. I was SO PUMPED to be racing, that the first ~100 meters I was swimming while breathing right side only every stroke (which I NEVER do…I’m a bilateral swimmer/breather). This was a HUGE mistake that caused a panic attack in the water. As I was swimming, I figured out what was causing the panic attack (hello…I wasn’t exhaling enough CO2 while breathing every stroke) and immediately corrected my stroke. This made the panic attack go away and made the last ~400 meters MUCH better! I guess taking almost 2 years off from racing made me a bit rusty, but I didn’t even care because I was SO pumped to be racing a triathlon again! As I was swimming those last 400 meters to the swim exit, I did have thoughts that I wished we were doing the full 1500 meters as I was ready and confident. This is a good sign for the coming races.

Getting to race again and squeeze into the Roka wetsuit…oh how I’ve missed doing the neoprene shimmy!

T1: (2:59…4/11 F40-44, 28/66 F, 96/193 overall)

As I exited the swim, the boat ramp was VERY slick with algae growing on it, so I cautiously walked up out of the water. I got my wetsuit off just below my hips and removed my goggles + swim cap as I was running to my transition spot so that when I arrived to my bike, I could quickly get my legs out of my wetsuit. As I was putting on my socks + bike shoes, I debated putting on my long sleeved jersey, but quickly opted to forgo that and only wear my gloves. It was chilly, but NOTHING like Ironman Louisville 2018, so I was confident with this decision. I donned my helmet and Roka sunnies, grabbed Mojo, and off we went!

Bike: (1:17:30 for 24.8 miles at 19.2 mph average speed…2/11 F40-44, 11/66 F, 87/193 overall)

After crossing the mount line and getting on Mojo, we cruised our way out of town (with some turns here and turns there). This course was a relatively flat course, so I just put the hammer down and went. I didn’t look at my power output/speed/cadence at all during this ride. I was so grateful to be racing that I only focused on playing and having fun. As I played chase trying to catch different people in front of me, I kept asking myself if I could go just a little bit harder in that moment.

I did some yo-yoing with another athlete as he was faster on the descents, but I was stronger on the climbs (not that there were many of either these). We did talk a little bit as we yo-yoed with each other. It was fun to encourage other athletes and cheer them on in a race setting again! Racing from a place of gratitude and fun removed all of the pressure, which set me up for success as I cruised into T2.

T2: (1:25…1/11 F40-44, 7/66 F, 44/193 overall)

I quickly racked my bike, changed into my running shoes, grabbed my visor + race belt, and exited T2.

Run: (50:14 for 6.2 miles at 8:06/mile average pace…2/11 F40-44, 12/66 F, 74/193 overall)

As I exited T2, I knew my feet were hitting the pavement because I wasn’t falling over while running, but my feet were SO cold and numb that I couldn’t feel them. I decided not to focus on them, but instead be grateful that I couldn’t feel them…if I was getting blisters (which doesn’t often happen), I couldn’t feel them, so numb feet was a good thing right?! 🤣

This run was 1.5ish miles out and back twice. It was fun to see other athletes and cheer them on. During the run, I continued to race from a place of fun + gratitude. I kept asking myself if I could go just a little bit harder. Since it was still cool, it was perfect for running. At one point, I passed another athlete who asked me what pace I’m trying to keep. I quickly responded with, “I am trying to keep a pace that is fun and full of gratitude.” I honestly didn’t look at my pace or metrics once during my run. This method served me well!

Overall: (2:23:46…1/11 F40-44, 11/66 F, 77/193 overall)

I was SO PUMPED to get to cross a finish line at a triathlon that I was grinning from ear to ear! Oh…and the icing on the cake…I set a new bike split PR and run split PR for the Oly distance! #LFG

1st place AG with a bike split PR + run split PR for the Oly distance! #LFG ⚡️

Gear: Coeur Sports triathlon shorts, Coeur Sports triathlon tank with shelf bra, Roka X-1 Goggles, Roka Women’s Maverick X Wetsuit, Specialized Transition tri bike, Specialized S-works Evade helmet, Specialized Torch 2.0 Road Shoes, Coeur Sports visor, Newton Kismet running shoes, Roka SL-1X sunnies