2021 week 41: flexible

If you remember from week 40, I ended the week sleeping on the couch with Jersey right off the bike…I needed sleep. Well, that carried over to start the week last week. I needed sleep, so I took some time off work early in the week and slept (nearly 12 hours on Monday night and nearly 11 hours on Tuesday night), which set me up great for workouts later in the week. I know that if I continue to push myself instead of rest + sleep, I am setting myself up for failure (injury, not hitting intervals, risking over training, etc.), so I almost always listen to my body and give it the sleep it craves. I decided to be flexible in my process and re work my plan for the week to give my body the rest it was craving.

Quote of the week:

“Be clear about your goal, but be flexible about the process of achieving it.”

~Brian Tracy

Swim: 11,000 yards

Friday I had a GREAT swim after work! Not only did I put up some AMAZING paces, but I also took time to play in the water (which is something I haven’t done nearly enough of lately).

  • Warm up:
    • 200 swim
    • 200 drills
    • 4×50 descending (10 sec rest)
  • Main Set:
    • 3 times through (start hard and make each set harder/faster/stronger than the last set)
      • 100 (10 sec rest)
      • 200 (15 sec rest)
      • 300 (20 sec rest)
    • 100 kick (with fins)
    • 300 pull (with buoy, paddles, and ankle band)
  • Cool Down:
    • 200 any stroke
Lately my swims have been all business, so it was WAY past time to bring the fun factor back! Oh don’t worry…I took care of business before playing Friday! ⚡️🔥

Bike: 48.9 miles

I stayed on the trainer last week for all of my bike workouts. I nailed some workouts and struggled with others, but I showed up, gave my best, and learned along the way.

Endurance efforts with surges in power to wake the legs up and fatigue them a bit before a 10 mile run off the bike! ⚡️

Run: 33.5 miles

Being just under 5 weeks to race day, I am ramping up the mileage and had some great runs last week. Some solo, some with my #1, and some with my favorite girls.

I GET to challenge myself and push my limits as I enter into peak training! Enjoying the process and excited to see what I can do on race day! #LFG ⚡️⚡️⚡️

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 14 hours & 7 minutes
2×30 minutes of full body strength training
30 minutes of yoga

Attitude of Gratitude:

Petting horses after running…Why not?!
Getting all the sleep!
“Mom, make room for me!” ~Jersey
Jersey loves the Normatec Recovery boots
Doing my civic duty by voting for city council + school board at a satellite site.
I have been at a loss for words on how to accurately describe how grateful I am to represent Coeur Sports for year 8 in 2022. This is more than a team. It’s a family! 🥰
Getting to swim/bike/run all in one day… #happyheart 🥰
So grateful that Basil loves to run and shared a few miles with me Saturday! 🐶🥰
So grateful that Jersey loves to run and shared a few miles with me Saturday! 🐶🥰
#SundayFunday included a farm ninja obstacle course, zip lines, hay rides, a corn maze, and quality time with some of my favorite peeps! 💙💛
The farm ninja obstacle course was a fun challenge on Sunday!

What were your highlights from week 41 of 2021?! When you find yourself exhausted, do you give your body the sleep, rest, and recovery it needs?!

2021 week 36: bittersweet

Last week we prepped for nearly 2 weeks off from work and had loads of fun in Madison, Wisconsin around Ironman Wisconsin race weekend. Since 2010, we have been in Madison the weekend after Labor Day every year (minus last year…hello Covid) for Ironman Wisconsin. We have volunteered, raced, spectated, cheered, supported, and loved every minute of what feels like a hometown race. We are sad to see the race date change to June starting in 2022 as we will no longer be surrounded by the IMWI experience. With the Ames Triathlon on the same weekend in June, our priorities will be elsewhere. Leaving Madison this time was bittersweet. Here is a flavor of week 36!

Quote of the week:

“Life can be bittersweet, but only you control the sugar.”

~Michelle Parsons

Swim: 0 yards

Sadly I didn’t get any swimming in last week. The timing of life and the pool schedule just didn’t mix.

Bike: 109 miles

Friday we got to ride on the Ironman Wisconsin bike course. I didn’t have working batteries, so I don’t have data to show for our ride, but sometimes those are the best rides! Ride free! We had to take a detour in the first 5 miles as part of the bike course is being resurfaced. This allowed us to climb new peaks and descend into new valleys. It was a fun new challenge! Oh…and that hill climb on Kollath made Barlow feel like a vacation for those of you familiar with the Barlow climb. 😳

Challenge yourself! The more fires you experience, the more fireproof you become! 🔥

Run: 24.8 miles

Saturday morning we ran on a large part of the IMWI run course. This is such a fun course. Running down State Street and along Lake Mendota…so many wonderful memories from racing here in years past.

“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” ~George Bernard Shaw

Creating calm, peace, gratitude, and joy along Lake Mendota Saturday morning with my fav before the excitement and whirlwind of volunteering/spectating at IMWI.

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 12 hours & 40 minutes
30 minutes of yoga

Attitude of Gratitude:

“As you have bigger goals, you have to be willing to expand on your belief for the next future version. Be clear about who you are, what you want to be, who the future you is. How does that future person act, think, feel?! PRACTICE that over and over and over!” ~ Vanessa Faye Foerster

Grateful for more miles to PRACTICE how my future self acts, thinks, and feels on race day! ⚡️⚡️⚡️#LFG #fun #gratitude #joy
Squeeze me! Squeeze me! Normatec Recovery
Thank you Nick for working out the kinks so I can take time off work to play! Vitality Massage Ames
Getting to drink Karma Kombucha…OMG! YAAASSSSSS!!
So many shenanigans with my fav on the IMWI bike course.
Meeting up with my Coeur Sports sisters!
I have been in the change tent at Ironman Wisconsin since 2010 except for years I raced (2011, 2014, and 2016) and last year (hello Covid). See ya later Ironman Wisconsin! 🐮 ❤️
Ian’s pizza is a MUST when in Madison!
Sunday was bittersweet as it marks the end of a chapter. With the race moving to June in 2022, it is time to pass the Captain badge off to the next amazing Women’s Change Tent Captain. 🐮 ❤️

What were your highlights from week 36 of 2021?!

2021 week 32: challenge yourself

Last week I got to challenge myself in a whole new way with some back to back racing over the weekend. I raced a local sprint triathlon on Saturday and followed it up with a local Olympic-distance triathlon on Sunday. I pushed hard in both races. Saturday I finished 1st overall female (with only 5 men finishing before me) and Sunday I finished 2nd overall female (with the only female finishing before me being a professional triathlete). I will have race reports up soon, so stay tuned!

Key takeaways:
-I GET to do this sport
-I GET to decide how I show up
-I set goals on purpose and with purpose
-I LOVE a good challenge
-I am incredibly grateful that my body allows me to do this
-smile and ALWAYS have fun
⚡️⚡️⚡️

Quote of the week:

“Challenge yourself; it’s the only path that leads to growth.”

~Morgan Freeman

Swim: 2506 yards

The only swimming I did last week was while racing.

SOOOO ready! LFG ⚡️

Bike: 37.2 miles

The only biking I did last week was while racing. Saturday’s race was super flat, but Sunday I got to climb Twister Hill (where the movie Twister was filmed) twice. Anyone who thinks Iowa is flat should come climb Twister Hill with me! 🤪

LFG! ⚡️
Photo credit: Dave Mable

Run: 15.5 miles

I did do a hill repeat run on Monday last week, but then didn’t run again until race weekend. It was good to save the legs a bit to see just how hard I could push them. Saturday’s race was super flat, but Sunday I got to climb a big hill twice. It was good physical and mental training for Ironman 70.3 Worlds coming up next month!

So much heart and courage running into that 2nd place finish!
Photo credit: Dave Mable

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 7 hours & 16 minutes
30 minutes of full body strength training

Attitude of Gratitude:

I love all the snuggles! 🥰🐶
So grateful to Nick with Vitality Massage for getting me race ready!
Look at this gorgeous sunrise that greeted us on Saturday morning.
This was my first time stepping up on the top step of a podium to take the overall female win!
Photo credit: The Iron Hippie
Taking 1st at the Twin Lakes Sprint Triathlon on Saturday! 🥳
Getting to squeeze and race with my Coeur Sports sistas!
That 2nd place medal at Bluff Creek
Photo credit: The Iron Hippie
Taking 2nd at the Bluff Creek Olympic-distance Triathlon on Sunday! 🥳
Thanks to the ISU Physics club for volunteering at the Bluff Creek Triathlon on Sunday!
Photo credit: The Iron Hippie

What were your highlights from week 32 of 2021?! Have you ever raced back to back?! If so, what did you learn?!

2021 week 31: seek challenges

Last week I got back into structured training as I build into these next 5 weeks toward Ironman 70.3 World Championships and 14 weeks to Ironman Arizona. It feels good to be pushing my limits again and challenging myself in new ways.

Quote of the week:

“Only when we seek challenges can we hope to find the best in ourselves.”

~Robert Rodriguez

Swim: 8796 yards

Thursday when I got in the water to complete my swim, I felt so sluggish and had thoughts that this swim was not going to go as planned. I decided to change my focus to my effort and form because I set goals on purpose and with purpose. I will always fight until I achieve my goals. Thursday required a little more fight and a lot more focus, but it totally paid off with each set faster than the last.

“Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” ~Harriet Beecher Stowe ⚡️🔥
  • Warm up:
    • 200 swim
    • 200 drills
  • Main Set:
    • 4×50 descending (10 sec rest)
    • 3x[100 (10 sec rest), 200 (15 sec rest), 300 (20 sec rest)] Descending sets (each set should be faster than the previous set
    • 100 kick
    • 300 pull
  • Cool Down:
    • 200 any stroke

Bike: 166 miles

Saturday and Sunday I rode on the trainer to climb ALL of the HILLS! Saturday I rode 70 miles and covered just over 5500 feet of elevation gain on The Mega Pretzel route on Zwift. Sunday I rode 68 miles and covered just over 4500 feet of elevation gain on The Pretzel route on Zwift. That is 10,000+ feet of climbing in 118 miles and buckets of sweat in 2 days. What a great way to prep for Ironman 70.3 World Championships!

I’d have to ride only hill repeats for days to get that kind of elevation gain here! 🤣

Run: 24.9 miles

Monday I ran hill repeats. I was going to do this before work, but with the poor air quality due to the smoke in the air from the Canadian wildfires, I decided that doing it after noon (when the air quality was to improve a bit) would be a wiser option. Bonus…it would also be a bit warmer and a gorgeous afternoon…nothing like the heat we had last week! There was still smoke in the air, so I probably should have done the hill repeats on the treadmill, but I just couldn’t resist the beautiful afternoon weather!

Hill repeats are in the training calendar on repeat for the next 6 weeks in preparation for all the hills in St. George at the Ironman 70.3 World Championships. I love a challenge! #LFG ⚡️🔥

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily

Weekly Totals: 21 hours & 15 minutes
3×30 minutes of full body strength training
2×30 minutes of yoga

Attitude of Gratitude:

So grateful that we don’t have the wildfires here, but the smoke from those fires in our area sure make for some beautiful sunrises.
So grateful I got to spend some time with my Coeur Sports sister, Courtney, and her husband Ron while they were visiting from DC!
Thank you Nick with Vitality Massage Ames for keeping me healthy and active!
Thanks Sim for my wonderful surprise!
Cupping…ouch! Grateful it helps and gets me back on track!
Any day I GET to swim/bike/run in the same day is a great day!
Getting to run with friends in cleanish air is always better!
Getting my Normatec Recovery squeeze on with all the snuggles! 🥰🐶
My little snuggle bug! 🥰🐶

What were your highlights from week 31 of 2021?! How do you challenge yourself?!

2021 week 30: take a break

Last week I stepped away from structured training to give my body, mind, and soul a break before pushing on to Ironman 70.3 World Championships in just under 7 weeks and then on to Ironman Arizona in 16 weeks. My body, mind, and soul were approaching “e” after Ironman 70.3 Ohio and needed to be refueled. Sleep was a priority last week and now I am feeling really ready and excited for the build to my coming races.

Quote of the week:

“Take a break and give your soul what it needs.”

~Audrey Kithcing

Swim: 0 yards

Bike: 0 miles

Run: 0 miles

SUP: 1.76 miles

So grateful for any amount of time I get to spend on the water! Friday morning we paddled before work. It wasn’t long due to the smoke from the Canadian wildfires infiltrating our area, but anything is better than nothing.

Early morning paddle before work is a great way to start the day!

Strength Training: 15 minutes of core strength daily except Monday

Weekly Totals: 2 hours & 14 minutes

Attitude of Gratitude:

Snuggles are my fave!!
“Look Mama! I found a treasure!” ~Jersey
Getting my morning bath from Jersey. #wetdog
Hugs and kisses!

What were your highlights from week 30 of 2021?!

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?