14 Week’s ’til #IMMT: fun in the pain

Last week was full of fun, but there was also some pain involved!

Swim: 11,200 yards

I had 4 swims last week, making this week my largest swim week in 2017! I’m still working on my flip turns, but have a LONG way to go for consistent results…sometimes I push off the wall, sometimes I miss, and I’m almost always off center and rotated when I flip! I’m not going to give up though…just keep swimming + practicing!

Soaring into the new week with 3800 yards of #swimlove on this #motivationalmonday
Starting #workforitwednesday off with a splash!
Friday night #swimlove is my fave!
Finishing off the week with 3600 yards of #swimlove and staring at this line!

Bike: 104 miles

I gained a LOT of self confidence last week on the bike! On Tuesday morning, I had some intervals that pushed me WAY out of my comfort zone…since I am pushing higher watts at my FTP, I have to work SO MUCH HARDER! It will definitely be worth it on race day! Saturday’s long solo ride, was my first ever long solo ride. I was nervous about going out by myself on the open roads, but I chose safe roads, and had a great ride despite my stomach acting up! I synced my phone up with¬†the Iron Hippie’s phone before I left, so he was tracking my every move…safety first!

Overcoming self doubt + working WAY out of my comfort zone = HUGE confidence booster on this #timetrialtuesday
Some #bikelove on this #workforitwednesday
First long solo ride on Saturday! HUGE confidence builder!
What goes down, must come up!

Run: 23.1 miles

Last week the temperatures started to feel more like late spring, early summer here in central Iowa. This made for some heat acclimation this week! Little by little, I will acclimate to the hot, humid summers that engulf us here in the Midwest!

Oh…and a smokin’ fast brick run with the sunrise Tuesday morning made me giddy!
Hill repeats with the sunrise is a perfect way to start the day! #rememberingTRJ
Brick run to follow Saturday’s long ride!
Sunday run day! #courageovercomfort

Strength Training: 1 hour & 50 minutes + 10 minutes of core strength daily

I had good variety in my strength training this last week. Tuesday’s strength session left me with some DOMS that stuck around longer than normal, but Nick with Vitality Massage got me back on track just in time for the weekend’s longer workouts!

Weekly Totals: 16 hours & 17 minutes

Weekly Positives:

I decided to throw my comfort to the wind this weekend and run in just a sports bra and shorts. This is a HUGE step for me as I am very self conscious, but am working to become more self confident!

Nick worked all the kinks out of my legs Friday night and then I headed to the pool to see if some active recovery would help me bounce back from my massage quicker.

Working out the kinks!

We have two of our favorite fur friends staying with us this week, which means 4 big dogs with LOTS of lovin’!!

Puppy play time!

I love my evening snuggles with Basil! She is so calming and relaxing!

Snuggles with my favorite girl!

Quote of the Week:

“Have fun in the pain!” ~Kelly Roberts

16 weeks ’til #IMMT: lesson learned

Last week was an easy week in preparation for my 1/2 marathon on Saturday.

Swim: 4950 yards

I had 2 swims last week where I spent some time working on my flip turns. They are far more complicated than I think they should be! My goal is to get them mostly under control this month so I can use them more frequently when we get outside in the 50 meter pool!

Going in for the flip…and I missed the wall. Guess I have more practicing to do!
Flippin’ Friday night!

Bike: 27.1 miles

I had some good bike rides last week, but nothing with a lot of intensity as I was preparing for the Drake 1/2 Marathon on Saturday. I even had a scheduled run off the bike this week! First brick of the season! ūüôā

Why the big grin?! 15 minutes of Z3 work today was above my threshold watts going into Ironman Wisconsin 7 months ago and it felt easy!! Thanks to Coach Kelly for helping me get stronger on the bike this year!!
#workforitwednesday + #bikelove with my fave!
First scheduled brick of the season done and dusted!!

Run: 15.9 miles

I had a short run off the bike on Thursday to shake out the legs before Saturday’s race. My race didn’t go quite as planned, but I’m still very happy with my official finish time of 1:51:43 on a VERY hilly course! Lesson learned: I think my pre-race massage on Wednesday was too close to my race. My legs felt like lead…even during my shake out run for about¬†10 minutes on my way to the race start. Unfortunately that lead feeling didn’t go away once¬†the race started. I started off at a pace that I wanted to maintain for the entire race, but at about mile 6, the wheels fell off. I kept talking out loud to my legs hoping they would start to feel light as feathers, but they just wouldn’t listen to all the self talk in the world! I kept pushing as hard as I could throughout the entire race and finished about 3 minutes faster than last year…positive! The rain also held off until after we were done…another positive! While it wasn’t the race I was hoping for, there are still¬†positives and lessons learned for the future. I have already scheduled my pre-race massage for my 70.3 a full week out from the race…lesson learned! ūüėČ

Not quite the race I was hoping for, but I pushed as hard as I could all the way through! Grateful the rain held off until after I finished! Another Drake 1/2 is in the books!

Strength Training: 1 hour & 15 minutes + 10 minutes of core daily

I had a couple of good strength training sessions this week. I really want to get back to yoga, but my left knee is still deeply bruised from my fall a couple of weeks ago. It isn’t ready for me to kneel on it yet!

Weekly Totals: 7 hours & 4 minutes

Weekly Positives:

We had some special deliveries this week from Sound Probiotics and Barnana…SO awesome to have these amazing sponsors supporting us this year!

Special delivery from Sound Probiotics to keep our guts healthy!
Someone is eyeing all of our Barnana goodness that arrived this week!

I had a pre-race massage this week and Nick really worked out some tension from my tight muscles! While it was a little too close to my race, it was a lesson learned and I’ve scheduled my next pre-race massage to hopefully avoid the same outcome!

Pre-race massage at Vitality Massage!

I ended the week with puppy snuggles with my favorite girl! She makes the best pillow!

Sunday snuggles with my girl!

Quote of the Week:

“Never regret anything that has happened in your life, it cannot be changed, undone, or forgotten. So take it as a lesson learned and move on.” ~Author Unknown

18 weeks ’til #IMMT: get back up

Last week took a downhill turn on Wednesday morning when I tripped on some concrete while running. It wasn’t really the week I was hoping for, but I’m choosing to focus on the positives of the week.

Swim: 3600 yards

I only had one swim last week. After my spill Wednesday morning, I didn’t want to get in the water Thursday morning and risk infection in my knees. I was looking forward to my Sunday swim, when I realized it was Easter Sunday and the gym was closed…bummed, but it gave my knees an extra day to heal before submerging myself for some chlorine therapy. I’m grateful for the swim I did have and looking forward to LOTS of chlorine therapy this week!

#findfaster with every stroke…even when the arms don’t want to turn over, I keep pushing!

Bike: 57 miles

One of the hardest bike workouts I had two weeks ago reappeared on my schedule this last week…AGAIN. It was a workout that filled me with doubt both times, but I CRUSHED it both times! I have become SO much stronger on the bike and have really learned to embrace courage over comfort. This week, I get to see just how much stronger I’ve become!

#tearsofjoy for finding a gear in my legs I didn’t think I had on this #timetrialtuesday
Easy recovery ride with my skinned knees
Putting more hay in the barn to make an explosion on race day!

Run: 11.8 miles

Wednesday morning I ran with the Iron Hippie and my favorite girl. Unfortunately I tripped on some raised concrete while running and went down HARD about 1.5 miles into my run, but I still managed to finish my 5 mile run at a pretty speedy pace! My only other run was Sunday with an hour run off the bike. After a pretty tough bike ride, I still managed to find some speed in my legs. My bike fitness is definitely translating nicely to my run as well! I’m excited to test this at my upcoming 1/2 marathon in a couple of weeks!

Sometimes you fall, but when you get up and keep moving, you get closer to achieving your dreams!
Some days you have it and some days you fight for every step! Fight for your dreams!

Strength Training: 30 minutes + 10 minutes of core most days (I did miss a couple of days this week)

I only completed one strength training session this week. Thanks to my tore up and bruised knees, I had a couple more rest days than planned this week, but that allowed me to recover properly and set me up nicely for what’s to come!

Weekly Totals: 8 hours

Weekly Positives:

Chatting with Coach Kelly! I am grateful that she takes time to chat with me on the phone. I’m excited that she has given me something to work on in the pool…FLIP TURNS! I’m nervous, scared, and super excited! Time to overcome some fears and play a little more in the water! I’m always striving to be #trackcatstrong as I work on #courageovercomfort!

Nick with Vitality Massage complimented me during my massage! He can tell I’m getting stronger because my muscles are more dense! I’m excited to see just how strong I’ve gotten…FTP test is coming up this week!

“I can tell you are getting stronger. Your muscles are much more dense.” So grateful my massage therapist knows my muscles so well and complimented my strength too!

Quote of the Week:

“It’s OK if you fall down and lose your spark. Just make sure that when you get back up, you rise as the whole damn fire.” ~Colette Werden

20 weeks ’til #IMMT: chasing dreams

This week…was all about chasing dreams! Putting in the work both physically and mentally to turn my dreams into a reality. My dreams won’t come true if I don’t do the work to get there, so this is what the work looked like:

Swim: 9100 yards

I had some challenging swims this week…they challenged me to try to keep a consistent pace, which is something I REALLY struggle with. Thanks to Coach Kelly for continually pushing me to swim at a more consistent pace!

You can sleep with your dreams or get up and work hard to turn them into reality. I really wanted to keep sleeping with my dreams Tuesday morning, but hard work won!
Sometimes I look faster than I really am!
Working to #findfaster with every stroke in the pool thanks to Roka!

Bike: 58.8 miles

I had a couple of key workouts this week on the bike to help me build my bike strength and push my threshold farther and farther from my comfort zone. I must say…I love the challenge! I love the feeling of success after pushing myself WAY out of my comfort zone! I love to push my limits and find that they are not the limits they once were! I love to find that what was once hard is now easy! Hard work is definitely paying off and I’m super excited about it! Thanks to Coach Kelly with Track Cat Fitness for making me #trackcatstrong this year!

Tears of joy as I pushed out of my comfort zone on so many levels during my #timetrialtuesday ride!
Work for it Wednesday is always better with friends!
Chasing dreams requires you to put your head down and do the work!

Run: 14.9 miles

I only had a couple of runs this week, but I was super lucky to get to run with a girlfriend on Friday morning! I was also SUPER lucky to have such an amazing outdoor run on Sunday morning in the misty cool weather!

Getting my #runlove on the treadmill on Wednesday because it sucked outside!
Morning miles with friends is best!
#runlove in the misty rain! Perfect running weather!

Strength Training: 2 hours & 15 minutes + 10 minutes of core strength daily

I had some good strength sessions this week! Box jumps definitely scare me, but I’m working to overcome my fear and become more #fearless. While I’m afraid of missing the box, I know I’m getting stronger by incorporating them into my schedule. Thanks Coach Kelly for pushing me out of my comfort zone! I also had an amazing home yoga session thanks to Amy’s yoga download suggestion. It was the most perfect yoga session for me! Thanks Amy!

Lots more core work this week!
Legs up a wall post Sunday run.

Weekly Totals: 12 hours & 22 minutes

Weekly Positives:

I had a massage on Friday…OUCH! After all of the hard work I’ve put my body through in the last couple of weeks, it was much needed! Thanks to Nick with Vitality Massage for keeping my body happy and healthy as I push it to new levels!

Because #recoveryisimportant and it always feels better afterwards!

I received my belated birthday present in the mail from my tri sis from down under! I can’t wait to read these two books!

I received the best belated birthday present in the mail from my tri sis from down under! Can’t wait to start reading!

Breakthrough Nutrition‘s Goodnight formula is the best! It helps me sleep and I don’t wake up groggy in the morning. This is the perfect #huginamug for recovery + sleep! Take advantage of a 10% discount by using code¬†WELOVESNBS at checkout!

#huginamug with Breakthrough Nutrition in my fave Sound Probiotics mug!

Quote of the Week:

“To accomplish great things, we must not only dream but also act, must not only plan but also believe.” ~¬†Anatole France

21 weeks ’til #IMMT: come back stronger

Such a good week to test my fitness in all three disciplines…swim + bike + run = fun!!

Swim: 5300 yards

Tuesday I had a CSS (critical swim speed) test. I was so excited to beat my goal time for the 200 yard swim (after already completing a 400 yard TT) by just over 3 seconds! Saturday’s swim was super challenging! I created a lot of training stress with my¬†bike workouts last week and it showed in Saturday’s swim. While I wanted to throw my tempo trainer on the deck at the end of the pool and call it quits, I am a fighter. So instead, I kept pushing hard, trying to meet my goal swim times, and I didn’t quit!

That moment when you look up at the clock and realize you’ve beat your goal 200 yard time trial time by just over 3 seconds!
Sometimes you have to fight through the challenging workouts to achieve your dreams. This was one of those workouts!

Bike: 73.5 miles

I had 2 rides this week that took me WAY out of my comfort zone. And. It. Was. AWESOME! There were a few times when it was super tough and¬†my mind ventured to the negative side, but I immediately changed the channel back to positive thoughts. I also had a couple of easier rides as well…one ride was in zone 1 and the second was in zone 2.

Incredibly grateful + lucky to have my sole sister pushing me through high intensity intervals even when she isn’t right beside me!
Bored on my recovery ride, but grateful for an easy spin on the bike!
“A ship in harbor is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.” ~John A. Shedd
Took my ship WAY out of the harbor and into uncharted waters!
Steady zone 2 ride!

Run: 11.1 miles

I had an amazing run on Wednesday followed by a 10K road race on Sunday. On Sunday I did an easy warm up for about 1.4 miles and then decided to see what my body was capable of despite having gone hard this week on the bike. I decided on my way to the race that I was hoping for a sub 52 minute 10K with a secret goal of sub 50 minutes. This wouldn’t quite give me a PR (and even on the same course), but I have been in the middle of a bike block, so running hasn’t been the focus lately. I didn’t quite hit my secret goal, but I’ll definitely take 50:32 on a hilly course!

Grateful to feel like I was running on borrowed legs! Feeling light + fast = #runlove
Ran my way to 3rd on a hilly 10K course with a finish time of 50:32…only 1:41 off my PR (on the same course)! Love, Love, LOVE the new Coeur Sports kit! ūüôā #heartandcourage
My first ever trophy (when I’ve placed on the podium before, I’ve always earned a medal)! Thanks Coach Kelly for pushing me + believing in me! #trackcatstrong

Strength Training: 1 hour & 55 minutes + 10 minutes of core daily

I had some good variety in strength training throughout the week. My highlight though was doing yoga at home for the first time ever! I had some help…er…watchful eyes thanks to the dogs!

Yoga at home for the first time ever…the dogs are sleeping on the couch!

Weekly Totals: 10 hours & 59 minutes

Weekly Positives:

  1. I set a new CSS for my swim!
  2. I pushed myself WAY out of my comfort zone on the bike and met the goals of each workout!
  3. I crushed my 10K without resting for it and was only 1:41 off my 10K PR pace!
  4. My body worked so hard this week and allowed me to push it to new levels!
  5. I did yoga without going to a class! This is progress people!

Quote of the Week:

“How could you think you are weak, when every time you break, you come back stronger than before?” ~r.m. drake

22 weeks ’til #IMMT: Spring Break

This week I was on spring break! That means only 11 more weeks until summer break…but who’s counting?! I had a lot of training + life balance + no stress this week. And. It. Was. SUPER FANTABULOUS!

Swim: 6200 yards

Monday I had a long swim and I was intimidated by it. Not only was it a long workout, but there was a lot of intensity built into it. I had self-doubt before the swim, but I stood at the edge of the pool and washed the self-doubt away. I changed the negative thoughts into positive ones. I went faster than expected, and CRUSHED this workout!

Erasing self-doubt before + during my swim!

Wednesday I had a tough swim. 3 x (8 x 50) with a goal speed of 46 seconds/50 and 23 seconds rest between. I hit my target for¬†the first 2 x (8 x 50), but started to fall off during the last set. The 1st 50 of the 3rd set was slower than 46 seconds, but I nailed the 2nd one. 3 & 4 were slower than 46 seconds, so I swam the last 4 at a comfortable pace. After my power test on Tuesday, I was super happy to be¬†able to hold onto the 46 second pace for as long as I could. Coach Kelly was happy too! “Wow! Oh, you’re going to crush that swim CSS test coming up. Wow!”

Pesky little tempo trainer!

Bike: 75.5 miles

WOW! I don’t even know how to describe how happy I am about the progress I have made on the bike and this week proved it! #TimeTrialTuesday proved to be a day of HUGE gains for me on the bike! I had an FTP challenge and I CRUSHED it! Going into the first 5 minute all out session, I was hoping to hold my power at or above 215 watts (this is the top end of my z5). I surpassed my expectations by holding 222 watts during that first 5 minutes. After a 10 minute easy spin, I then had a 20 minute FTP, where I was hoping to maintain 195 watts. I ended up pushing 197 watts for the duration and was so excited! This was the first time that I can truly say I left everything I had on the bike…so much so that when I was done, my legs were trashed! I worked so hard! I overcame self-doubt, the “pain” in my legs, and the negative thoughts that would creep into my mind. And. It. Feels. SUPER FANTABULOUS!

#TimeTrialTuesday resulted in a 10 watt improvement in my FTP!

I had an easy ride on Wednesday and followed this up with a high intensity ride on Thursday. Since I was working off of my new power numbers, this was a tough ride, but I successfully achieved each of my interval goals and that is something to smile about!

When your power numbers improve, it means you have to lower your head and work harder than you’re used to!

Saturday I had a 2 hour ride with a variety of pace changes throughout. And. It. Was. Tough! With an increase in my FTP earlier this week, it meant I had to work even harder. My mind was all in, but my legs just wouldn’t turn over and it didn’t matter how much I tried to convince them otherwise. I am INCREDIBLY¬†grateful to Coach Kelly for understanding me, challenging me, supporting me, believing in me, and reminding me of the following: “You WILL inevitably “fail” some sessions. ¬†You must. ¬†If you don’t, you won’t know your limits. ¬†What you can handle…and then go to them to expand them out further. I take your long term goals seriously, so expect to be pushed. ¬†You’re going to need a series of mini breakthroughs to progress to high levels. Part of that will be days like this. If I give you an easier program you’ll feel good all the time for sure “crushing” every session…but as I once said to a coach… “I want to BE better, not feel better!” ¬†:-)” I agree with Coach Kelly! I don’t want the¬†easy road! I WANT to be challenged! I WANT to be pushed out of my comfort zone! I WANT to push my limits to find new ones! I expect to fail…that is part of the learning + growing process! I want to BE better, not just feel better!

Sometimes you ride the struggle bus, but you always grow, learn, and get stronger in the process!

Run: 18.8 miles

I am have been working on increasing my run volume this week, by running 5 days this week. Nothing super long, but running more to increase my run volume. The week started with some really cold temperatures, but thankfully warmed up a bit by the weekend! From snow on Monday to shorts and a tank top on Sunday??? Yep! Welcome to Iowa! ūüėČ

Found the worlds smallest snowman while running Tuesday!
Running with the sunrise on Wednesday morning…so cold my eyelashes froze!
This was one of my longest run in a while!
New Newton Kismets! YES! Like butter on my feet!
Trying to get some color on this pasty white body + soak up some vitamin D!

Strength Training: 2 hours & 45 minutes + 10 minutes of core strength daily

I had some good variety in strength training this week. Tuesday was mostly core work after my FTP challenge, Thursday was full body strength and core while I taught TRX and Sunday I reconnected with my mat at yoga…MUCH NEEDED!

Reconnecting with my mat was MUCH NEEDED!

Weekly Totals: 13 hours & 36 minutes

Weekly Positives:

It was spring break week, so I got to load up on the training, get some appointments taken care of, take the occasional afternoon nap, and enjoy some downtime.

Thanks to Coach Kelly’s guidance, I have made some HUGE mental gains this week in overcoming self-doubt, changing the negative channel in my head¬†to a positive one, and that has translated quite well to my training…HELLO 10 watt increase in my FTP + swim gains!!

This is my vision for Ironman Mont Tremblant!

Sushi with friends = perfection!

I had some amazing deliveries this week! Thanks to Breakthrough Nutrition, Karma Kombucha, and Sound Probiotics for keeping us happy + healthy!

Breakthrough Nutrition FTW!
Sound Probiotics = FTW DOUBLE WIN!

I had a massage! Thanks Nick at Vitality Massage for keeping my muscles happy + healthy!

When your massage therapist says, “You have dense muscles, which is awesome! That means you’re strong!” Thanks Nick for making a girl feel good!

Mom and Dad came to visit for the weekend. The four of us enjoyed Jersey Boys…such an AMAZING¬†show!

Quote of the Week:

“You WILL inevitably “fail” some sessions. ¬†You must. ¬†If you don’t, you won’t know your limits.” ~Coach Kelly Hadiaris

24 weeks ’til #IMMT: Focusing on the Positives

I had a full week that included¬†workouts in all areas…swim, bike, run, and strength training! Wahoo!

Swim: 6600 yards

I had a couple of good swims this week, but the best one was on Saturday. I was swimming faster than expected. And. It. Was. AWESOME! I felt fluid in the water and amazing!

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Swimming with Maggie is always a great way to start the week!
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Follow the path that your heart leads you on! Share your passion with others! Stay true to yourself! Believe in you!
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Doing a little dance in the pool post swimming to celebrate going faster than expected!

Bike: 50.1 miles

I finally got a good sweat in on the bike this week! Due to my back injury, I hadn’t been able to go hard on the bike for a while, but that all changed this week! After Saturday’s ride, I actually saw pools of sweat on the floor under Mojo again! YIPPEE!!

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So grateful to get to go harder on the bike without pain! THANK YOU BODY!
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Doing that thing I love!
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Gettin’ my sweat on!

Run: 11.6 miles

Not only was I able to sweat it out more on the bike this week, but I was also able to eventually take my run outside! Hello SERIOUS #runlove + fresh air does the body and soul good! I even got to enjoy one run in shorts…in March! Wahoo!

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Starting the week still on the treadmill.
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Getting to finally run outside in the fresh air wtih Basil = bliss!
Running in shorts in March!
Running in shorts in March!

Strength Training: 1 hour & 50 minutes + 10 minutes of core strength daily

I’m back into strength training and daily core strength too! I had to start off easy with the weights and am still not back up to the weight I was at before my injury, but I’m rebuilding my strength in a progressive way that will hopefully keep my healthy and injury free!

Weekly Totals: 10 hours & 14 minutes

Weekly Positives:

Because I have been adding some intensity to my workouts and have been running outside again, I decided I need to spend more time on recovery. This week, I spent a lot of time stretching post workouts to make sure that my body stays healthy and fit! Multiple epsom salt + lavender soaks has also helped with my recovery this week!

Legs up a wall post bike workout
Legs up a wall post bike workout

I got to run outside with my sole sister! It is been far too long since we have last run together…hopefully this is something we get to do much more frequently in the future!

#solesister + #runlove = #happyheart
#solesister + #runlove = #happyheart

Quote of the Week:

“Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you’ll start having positive results.” ~Willie Nelson