18 weeks ’til #IMLou – Race Week Part 1

Last week was RACE WEEEEEEEKKK…well, kind of!!! Ironman Wisconsin 70.3 was today!! My goal was #sub6orbust and you can read more about how I planned to achieve this goal here. Due to the weather, delays, and my safety, I made the decision to pull out of the race before it started (see the picture below of my fave and the crazy weather we had). Coach Kelly is having me do a solo 70.3 “race” on Tuesday and I’m really excited to do so! The #sub6orbust is still alive, but will hopefully be put to rest (unofficially) soon!! This will be a different kind of 70.3, but since I’m trained, tapered and mentally ready, I am going to give it my ALL and am going to crush the 6 hour time barrier!!

Swim: 5329 yards

Swimming away from the school year and into summer break!! #schoolsoutforsummer
Swimming into #imwi703 race weekend with my fave right beside me in the outdoor 50 meter pool!!
Pre-race swim…check!!

Bike: 32.7 miles

Rollin’ into race week ready to test my endurance and push my limits!!
Starting my last official day of school this year off with my fave doing what I love!
Short brick session for #globalrunningday to prepare the legs for #IMWI703 on Sunday!!
Pre-race bike…check!!

Run: 3.79 miles

Short brick session for #globalrunningday to prepare the legs for #IMWI703 on Sunday!!
Pre-race run…check!!

Strength Training: 30 minutes + 10 minutes of core strength/stretching daily

Short morning strength post bike ride on the last official day of school!!

Weekly Totals: 6 hours & 17 minutes 

Quote of the Week:

“Make and be confident in your own decisions.”

Attitude of Gratitude:

So grateful to Nick, with Vitality Massage for getting me race ready!!
Love these girls!! Grateful I got to spend some time with them at the outdoor aquatic center!!
Ha Ha Ha!! My phone still thinks I’m going to work this morning when I started the car…NOPE!! Grateful for summer break!!
I am so grateful to get to push my limits and test my endurance. I will have a race report later this week on my #sub6orbust race today!! (You are going to have to wait a few extra days for this report since I’ll be doing my solo race on Tuesday!!)
Incredibly grateful to live in a neighborhood that comes together to help each other out. Our neighbor’s tree went down during a storm and everyone came together to help clean it up.
Grateful to have Zealios sunscreen protect me during training and racing!
Love my little helper!! Basil helped me put new tires on Mojo for race day!!
Grateful for the squeeze from my Normatec Recovery boots while I blog!
Grateful to be Madison bound with my fave!!
Turning social friends into real friends!! So grateful to meet Beth in person!!
So grateful to stay with my college friend, Chris, and her girl Gracie while in Madison!!
Mojo is racked and ready to race tomorrow.
So grateful I got to meet up with Steena, my Coeur Sports teammate!! Love this pretty, badass lady!!
So grateful to have my fave by my side and help make tough decisions that are right for us…this was the weather on race morning that influenced our decision to pull out of the race.

How was your week? What are you grateful for this week?! 

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Ironman Wisconsin 70.3 Race Goals

With Ironman Wisconsin 70.3 just a few days away, I decided to take a page from Becca’s book! With the prompting of Coach Kelly, I have come up with outcome and process goals for each discipline of the race and I’ve decided to share my goals and intentions publicly. Becca said it best, “I find that when I say it out loud, it makes it much harder to hide from your goal.” So here is my over arching goal for Sunday’s race:

I REALLY want to see a sub 6 hour finish time for the 70.3 distance! There I said it out loud! I BELIEVE I can achieve this! As Steena says #sub6orbust!!

Here is how I plan to make it happen:

Swim: 37 minutes (1:45/100 yards average pace)
I did this race in 2016 and had a swim time of 41 minutes on this course – this year the swim is a rolling start format instead of age group, so I can seed myself accordingly.
1. Remain calm, strong, and focused. If I feel like I’m anxious, change the channel in my mind (I didn’t do this at the Kansas City Olympic Distance Triathlon last month) to “long, strong, calm” with each stroke. Mentally speaking these words while swimming has helped me in training overcome different obstacles and I know it can help on race day too.
2. Site every 4-6 strokes to swim a straight line and close to the buoys to keep my distance shorter.

Bike: 3:15:00 or faster (17.2 mph average speed)
In 2016 my bike time was 3:25:14 (16.3 mph average) with about 2500 feet of climbing – this year the bike course is slightly different, but still has 2327 feet of climbing over the 56 miles with some BIG climbs…similar to the IMWI course where you can’t always take your momentum with you.
1. Keep my variability index (VI) as close to 1.00 as possible. With all of the hills this could be a challenge, but I am going to do my very best!
2. Keep my power output solidly in Z3 (152-182 watts) for the duration of the bike. Pick it up after the BIG hill climb on Whalen Road (about mile 47) all the way into transition.
3. Remain focused even on the rough road surfaces. There are parts of this course that have REALLY rough road surfaces. I need to keep my focus and continue to push hard through them instead of slowing my pace as I sometimes do without realizing it until I look back at my data.
4. Don’t get frustrated in the first few miles since a good part of it is on a paved path and very crowded.

Run: sub 2 hour run (9:00 min/mile average pace)
In 2016 my run time was 2:45:36 (12:38 min/mile average pace) on a REALLY HOT DAY where the heat index was +/- 100*F – there is a lot of shade early on with some rolling hills as we run around Lake Monona in some neighborhoods, but during the last 5K, I don’t remember much shade.
1. Keep my HR in the 160s for the first 10 miles.
2. During the last 5K, give it all I have…and leave it all out there in the last mile.

Transitions: sub 4 minute T1 and sub 3 minute T2
I remember a long run from the boat ramp to transition. My 2016 T1 time was 5:29 and my 2016 T2 time was 4:06.
1. Be fluid and efficient! Get and Go!
2. Keep HR in check so I don’t start the bike/run with a really spiked HR.

Overall: sub 6 hour race!!
1. Smile! When I smile I push harder and don’t focus on the “pain” as much. It also makes the “pain” much more enjoyable!!
2. Don’t focus on others…focus on ME! What do I need right now? How am I feeling right now?
3. Mantras!! Self-talk!! Focus!! How bad do you want it?!

If you want to follow me on Sunday, I’m number:

19 weeks ’til #IMLou – busy

Last week was busy. SO MUCH GOING ON…last days of school with kids (including posting grades), sitting in on interviews to hire a new colleague, celebrating the end of the 2017-2018 school year with colleagues/friends, cleaning out my classroom for summer school, helping a friend move, running lots of errands, having my twin nieces visit over the weekend, washing the dogs, cleaning bikes, and trying to fit in training where I could. Busy, busy, busy!! Unfortunately I didn’t get as much training in as I’d like, but I did what I could with what I had. Now it is time for RACE WEEEEEEKKKK…Ironman Wisconsin 70.3 is a week away!!

Swim: 0 yards

I’m so bummed I missed swimming this week. My busy week took over and swimming just didn’t happen. 😦

Bike: 10.8 miles

Started my last Tuesday with students this morning off right!! Z3/Z4 intervals for breakfast!!

Run: 7 miles

Today was a double run day. This morning’s run was HOT AF!!
“When you’re going through hell, keep going!” ~Winston Churchill
PM run was also HOT AF!!

Strength Training: 30 minutes + 10 minutes of core strength/stretching 5 days this week

Weekly Totals: 3 hours & 1 minute (so bummed these numbers weren’t higher, but I have the summer to train like a professional triathlete!)

Quote of the Week:

“It’s all about finding the calm in the chaos.” ~Donna Karan

Attitude of Gratitude:

Normatec recovery boots + Spotted Cow is the perfect way to round out a CRAZY day at work!!
SUSHI!! What a great way to celebrate the completion of the work week!
Grateful to have these two monkeys come and visit us this weekend! Life is always better with ice cream!!
A clean bike is a fast bike!! Ready to roll into RACE WEEEEEEEEKKKK!!
The twins are off to swim camp!! Have fun girls and learn lots!! #isuswimcamp #cycloneswimcamp
Washing the dogs!!

How was your week? What are you grateful for this week?! Bring on RACE WEEEEEEEKKK!!! 🙂

What’s Up?! – January 2018

How is the first month of 2018 already in the rearview mirror?! It seems like the start of the new year was just yesterday! Here is a look at what the month had in store for me:

Training:

This month my training was hit or miss thanks to an illness shortly after the start of the year and most recently the inability to turn my head. Thankfully I am back to feeling 100% and am ready to regain consistency in February! I did establish a racing schedule for 2018 that I am SUPER PUMPED about! I’ve let myself fully recover from my 2017 racing season and am SO ready to start rebuilding the engine for a stronger + fun filled 2018!

Celebrating the end of the #batcapchallenge on January 1!
First power test of 2018! Grateful for a healthy body! I’m ready to work hard and rebuild my fitness + surpass 2017!
So grateful to run with my fave + get some fresh air before the freezing temps return!

Swim: 8500 yards
Bike: 127 miles
Run: 24.8 miles
Totals: 20 hours & 53 minutes

Family:

We were so blessed to have our twin nieces (and my sister) come stay with us for a weekend early in January so we could attend their swim meet. The twins convinced the Iron Hippie to make a cake from scratch when they came to visit us. The recipe used was one the twins found on the internet and was a bit dry…it needs some love! We also got to spend some time back home home with family for the Okoboji Winter Games.

The twins are ready for their swim meet!
The cake is done!
Date night! #balance
Me and my fave listening to Damon Dotson!
Snowshoeing adventures with my fam!
Lunch with the twins at their school!
Putting puzzles together with the twins!
Winter wonderland with Dad + my fave!
Catching up with my “baby brother” at home home!

Reading:

My Weight Has Nothing to Do with How Good a Runner I Am by Allie Kieffer is a MUST READ! Wow! Body image plagues society! As an endurance athlete not on the skinny side, I often feel that I should lose weight to perform better…not because I think I am overweight, but because I see + hear what society says about being “skinnier.” I am STRONG! Stronger now than I have ever been…my swim times are dropping, my FTP on the bike is climbing, and my run times have gotten faster during the marathon of my Ironman races. If I were to lose weight, I may perform better, but I may also lose this strength. That is not a risk I am willing to take. It is time for society to change! The negative body image stereotyping MUST go, we need to focus on nutrient dense foods (count the colors not calories people), and we need to be grateful for what our bodies do for us! “As women, we shared more similarities than differences: We are all perseverant, powerful, confident, and healthy. And, dare I say it, strong.” #strongisthenewskinny

2017: A Year of Rediscovering Joy where Amelia shares how she rediscovered joy as she overcame injury. “True joy and true gratitude does not come from the victory – it comes from the pursuit of the achievement.”

The Champion Mindset: An athlete’s Guide to Mental Toughness by Joanna Zeiger is a great read! To race at your best, you have to not only train the body, but also the mind. Zeiger takes you through her “own personal journey from a struggling novice swimmer to Olympian and World Champion.”

Listening to:

The Find Your Awesome Podcast with Olympian Samantha Livingston…WOW!!! I SO connected to what Samantha and Kelsey discussed in this podcast!!! I have SO many perfectionist tendencies that I am trying to shed and leave behind. “Perfection is driven by the fear of what people will think.” I will continue to work to shed these perfectionist tendencies. I don’t want to live in fear of what other people think or what I think that they think!

The Find Your Awesome Podcast with Professional Triathlete Amber Ferreira is a must listen to! Kelsey Abbott interviews Amber and learns more about Amber’s “pro career to date, her love of racing up mountains, her mindset, resiliency and heart. We dig into her current project—recovering from stage 3 adrenal fatigue. Amber Ferreira is a professional triathlete, a physical therapist and a multisport coach. She’s the 2014 Ironman Lake Placid Champion and the two-time US National Snowshoe champion. She’s also a heart-driven, spunky human who loves to dream big and loves to laugh.”

Pumped For:

My 2018 race schedule! I am SO excited to be racing Ironman Wisconsin 70.3, Ironman Ohio 70.3, and Ironman Louisville as my long distance races this year! The Ironman has become my lifestyle! I love the Ironman distance! I love the feels that come with training + racing ALL. DAY. LONG! I love the excitement crossing the Ironman finish line brings so many people! I love the challenges that each new Ironman journey + race brings! I LOVE IRONMAN!

Grateful For:

-My body allowing me to push it to new levels, but also accepting the recovery I give it to perform stronger + better in the future.

-A snow day + a few days with 2 hour delays to start this month at school. I’m not a fan of having to make up the snow days, but it is always nice to have a break from school from time to time. Oh…and the 2 hour delays we don’t have to make up! 🙂

-The most supportive husband ever! I’m so grateful the Iron Hippie is willing to support me on my #IMLou journey! This will be the first Ironman race I participate in with him as sherpa + spectator extraordinaire!

-Dr. Chris Feil with Team Chiropractic for helping me overcome my “whiplash” symptoms from the car accident I was NEVER in. We have no idea how it happened!

-Nick Morton with Vitality Massage for keeping me on the train moving forward thanks to my biweekly massages!

Coach Kelly’s flexibility this month as life threw me a couple of curve balls!

-Being a SBR Sports Inc Ambassador for 2018! I absolutely LOVE the TRISWIM, TRISLIDE and SKINSLICK products to remove chlorine and keep me chafe + blister free during training, racing, and snowshoeing! These products are a dream!

How was your month of January?! What are you pumped up about?! What are you grateful for?!

2018 Race Schedule

“Don’t put your life on hold to watch someone else live their dream. Today is the day to resolve to live your dream.” ~Unknown

Until a few weeks ago, I felt like I was putting my life on “hold” waiting for those changes I hinted at earlier to actually happen (hint: they still haven’t happened). I had hit the “hold” button back in September and was listening to elevator music. It wasn’t very good music either! I came to realize I wasn’t being true to myself. I wasn’t following my heart. I wasn’t allowing myself to experience joy and fun at a level that lights my fire. I decided to hang up on the elevator music and take control of my future. With the help of Coach Kelly + support from the Iron Hippie, I am following my heart and have put together a 2018 race schedule that I am SUPER EXCITED about!!

Friendly Son’s 10K – March 25, 2018

Drake 1/2 Marathon – April 22, 2018

Kansas City Triathlon: Olympic Distance – May 13, 2018

Ironman Wisconsin 70.3 – June 10, 2018

Okoboji Triathlon – July 21, 2018

Ironman Ohio 70.3 – July 29, 2018

Okoboji Point to Point Swim – August 4, 2018

Ironman Louisville – October 14, 2018

I have some BIG goals for this year and am really looking forward to working hard to achieve them!! I wish there was a smiley face emoji with an INCREDIBLY large grin…that could accurately express how pumped I am about 2018!!

Racing with #heartandcourage to become #trackcatstrong in 2018

I have been so blessed + honored to be a part of the Coeur Sports ambassador team for the last 3 years! I am humbled + honored to have this AMAZING company and these empowering ladies by my side for 2018! This sisterhood of women are so strong, supportive, inspirational, #hardcoeur, uplifting, encouraging, kind, and are full of #heartandcourage!

With my 2017 racing season in the rearview mirror, I am looking forward to my 2018 racing season! I have a few races that I’ve already signed up for, a few more I’m planning to sign up for, and then there’s my late season schedule…I’m still debating on that, so that will just have to be a surprise! 😉 I am really excited to continue working with Coach Kelly at Track Cat Fitness to help me get stronger + faster in 2018! #trackcatstrong here I come!

My tentative race plan for 2018 includes:

Drake 1/2 Marathon – April 22, 2018 (already registered for)

Hickory Grove Triathlon – May 20, 2018

Ironman Wisconsin 70.3 – June 10, 2018 (already registered for)

Okoboji Triathlon – July 14, 2018

Ironman Ohio 70.3 – July 29, 2018 (already registered for)

Okoboji 3.5 mile Swim – August 4, 2018

I have some BIG dreams that I am chasing, so I am hopeful that these races (with a few others scattered throughout the year) set me up for an even more amazing 2019 racing season! Look out 2018…I’m comin’ for ya!