How is it already July?! The month of June seems to have flown by MUCH faster than I’d like, but I guess that means I’m having fun! Here is a look at what I’ve been up to:
Hello outdoor swimming in the 50 meter pool! I sure have missed you and am glad we’ve gotten to spend some time together! I have found that I am becoming a stronger swimmer…putting up swim times that I didn’t think were possible + reflecting on the progress I’ve made! Serious #swimlove
Hello first century ride of 2017 + a new 100 mile PR! It was an AMAZING day on 2 wheels and the open roads (with some trail riding)! I felt incredibly strong and felt like I could have easily continued to ride! Serious #bikelove
Coach Kelly has moved my long run to the middle of the week, and I love it! I’m so glad to have made this switch…sometimes change is good! Another thing I’m loving is the split long run! I have found that splitting my long run into an AM and PM run allows me to recover a bit between the two runs and I’m able to run both of these distances at a faster pace. Don’t worry…I’m also getting some long runs in that are done all at once as well…they aren’t always pretty, but I’m doing the work! 😉
HUGE hugs to Coach Kelly, with Track Cat Fitness, for challenging me on so many levels, pushing me WAY out of my comfort zone, and making me #trackcatstrong this year! I am forever grateful for her guidance + support this year!
Swim Totals: 16.7 miles
Bike Totals: 392 miles
Run Totals: 94 miles
I did the Liberty Triathlon early in the month, but it didn’t exactly go as planned and wasn’t something I care to repeat. I finished, but not the distance I had trained for.
This Road I Ride: Sometimes it Takes Losing Everything to Find Yourself by Juliana Buhring is an amazing ride…errrr…read! Juliana lost the love of her life and decided to cycle around the world having never seriously ridden a bicycle before. Over 152 days, Juliana’s ride spanned four continents and 18,060 miles. She became the fastest woman to cycle the world and beat prior men’s records as well! This inspirational story takes you through her trials and tribulations as she accomplishes a goal she once thought was impossible.
The Brave Athlete: Calm the F*ck Down and Rise to the Occasion by Simon Marshall PhD and Lesley Paterson is a practical guide to help athletes with their mental training. I love that this book gives you “homework” to do to help you improve your mental performance. It isn’t just a book you read, but if you use this amazing tool correctly, it is also a hands-on approach for you to overcome negative thinking, feelings, and acting that have the potential to sabotage your potential and love for sport. This book has helped keep the fun in triathlon!
Re-Defining Our “Weaknesses” by Kara LaPoint is spot on! “In sport, as in life, it’s good to identify our weaknesses; to know them and confront them. But it’s not so good to continually identify ourselves by those weaknesses…” She has changed her mindset…”I now see my “weaknesses” merely as opportunities to become stronger.” We should all view our weaknesses as an opportunity to become stronger!
The Brave Athlete with Dr. Simon Marshall and Lesley Paterson is also one of the books I am currently reading. For most athletes, the “textbook” approaches to mental performance may not work as advertised. Dr. Simon Marshall provides performance psychology support for the BMC Pro Cycling Team. When you combine his knowledge with Lesley Paterson’s impressive triathlon record (hello three-time off road triathlon champion + Ironman champion + coach), you get a dynamic duo who share some of their unique approaches to improve mental performance in athletes.
Triathlete Turned Marathon Swimmer Jamie Ann Phillips is currently training for a 28.5 mile open water swim around New York City known as the 20 Bridges Swim. Her commitment and dedication to swimming this race has her currently swimming 37,000 yards (just over 21 miles) each week in preparation for this event. Become inspired by Jamie Ann Phillips and cheer her on as she swims one of the “Triple Crown” open water swim events this August!
Time with family + friends! We’ve been so lucky to have our twin nieces come visit us and spend some time with friends!
Sarah Cooper and Janie Hayes! These two women are strong, inspirational, and amazing! Sarah finished 1st woman in the individual Race Across America (RAAM) in 11 hours 18 hours 56 minutes. When asked “Why?” her response, “Why not?!” Janie finished 1st woman and 3rd overall in the Trans Am bike self supported bike race across America in 19 days 7 hours 50 minutes. This was Janie’s 2nd time doing this race!
Looking Forward To:
Our 4 week vacation in Vermont, New York, and Canada! While I don’t want to wish summer away (and we’ll be back to work the day we return from our vacation), I am looking forward to exploring new territory, connecting with family + friends, training on new terrain, relaxing, and racing Ironman Mont Tremblant!
My intention for 2017 is to become more fearless! So…how have I been doing with this? I’ve continued to make progress on becoming more fearless. I am also really working on not letting others opinions of me bother me and I think I’ve gotten much better at this…hello #sportsbrasquad and wearing bikinis at the pool for lap swimming. Am I comfortable…not yet, but I’m facing the fear head on! Since I’m on summer break, work is on the back burner. I will be back at it soon enough! I have made some BIG gains while training this month! This has caused me to have to stare fear in the face and stretch WAY out of my comfort zone! I have stared fear in the face by going out for many solo, long rides! In the past I’ve always had company for rides over 2 hours, but after spending multiple 4+ solo hours in the saddle on the open roads, I’m happy to say that I’m getting more comfortable with the uncomfortable = progress! I have also learned which roads I prefer to ride on by myself and which ones to completely avoid!
While I’ve made some progress on becoming more fearless in different parts of my life, I still have a LOT more progress to make, but don’t we all?! I’m a continuous work in progress!
How was your month of June? What were your June highlights? What are you looking forward to?
December has been a great month, full of lots of fun and changes as I prepare for 2017! Here is what I’ve been up to:
The first month of training with Coach Kelly at Track Cat Fitness is in the books. It has been AWESOME! I have already seen improvements in my fitness in just one month! Granted…after taking about 9 weeks off after Ironman Wisconsin, I was hoping to see my fitness start to bounce back quickly and it has. I’m grateful that my body is responding so well to the time off and my month back to training!
Winter break! I have had the opportunity to read, exercise, help friends, spend time with family and friends, and relax…it has been GREAT! While I’m enjoying the time away from school over the winter break, I am looking forward to getting back to school and starting semester #2!
Not only has Coach Kelly challenged me to be a stronger athlete, but she has also challenged me in other aspects of my life as well (probably without even knowing it). By coming up with my focus word for 2017, I was inspired to step COMPLETELY out of my comfort zone and climb to new heights…literally! When you are afraid of heights, this is a HUGE deal!
How was your month of December? What were your highlights? Who’s ready for 2017?!
I wrapped up last week with a run test, but that wasn’t the end of my testing…hello FTP test on the bike and swim time trial.
I had planned to get up early to complete my run and strength training before work so that I could have a free evening, but sleep took precedence. When I woke up at 4 am and knew that I could complete both workouts after work in plenty of time, I decided to go back to sleep for 2 more hours. After a full day of work, I went home, ran and completed my strength training.
I had a FTP test on the bike to start my Tuesday! I was very excited, yet nervous to see how much bike fitness I’d lost since Ironman Wisconsin. The bad news…I lost more bike fitness than I’d hoped. The good news…I didn’t lose as much bike fitness as I thought I had. The even better news…Coach Kelly says that my power results for my 5 minute and 20 minute tests indicate that I am “well balanced in your abilities. This balance you already have is good news in my opinion! : )”
After a full day of work, I met with a friend who is signing up for her first Ironman in 2017. She picked my brain about all things Ironman from a first timer’s perspective and it was so much fun! I’m super excited for her and her 2017 journey! It is so fun to share my passion with others!
I started my day with some #swimlove. I love chlorine therapy in the morning! It is the perfect way to wake up 🙂
After a full day of work and running a few errands on my way home, I hopped on the bike for an easy recovery ride!
Good morning run on our first frigid morning of the season…hello -8F windchill! I think this means treadmill time!
After a full day of work, I worked with two personal training clients and then taught TRX before eating dinner and crawling into bed for the last day of my work week.
Good morning #chlorinetherapy on this cold morning (-3F windchill)! I really wanted to pull the covers up over my head when the alarm went off and stay in bed with my dreams, but I decided to get up and work hard during my swim time trial to turn my dreams into a reality instead!
After a run test last Saturday + bike test Tuesday + swim test this morning, I had a much needed massage after work! OUCH!
I woke up to an endurance ride and strength session in my Coeur Sports Kona kit…after all, #IMKona is going to air on NBC this afternoon. #dreambelieveachieve
After getting a Karma Kombucha delivery (12 cases) to our house, I went for a 25 minute run in my new Hoka One One Claytons in the snow. I think I’ll be a Clifton girl as I felt some rubbing in the arches of both feet during such a short time. I’ve heard this is a common problem with this model.
I spent the afternoon watching #IMKona on NBC and then traveling to Kyle’s Bikes to pick up the Iron Hippie’s bike that was getting some TLC! We spent the evening relaxing and enjoying quality family time.
I woke up so grateful for a good night’s sleep and warm enough temps that I could run outside again today. After running to the grocery store before all the post church goers, I went to the pool and had a much better swim than I expected! It was fun to play in the pool afterwards also…this is what I do to keep my swims fun!
After swimming, I came home with swim brain…yep, I tried to fill my water bottle with the lid still on it. It didn’t work very well! I ate a granola bar, changed clothes, and went out for my run. With the snow we’ve gotten in the last couple of days, I decided to take my run to the golf course to prevent slipping and to have fun running with my girl and our friends’ dog (the Golden).
After running, it was time to Eat. All. The. Food. I was so hungry!! I enjoyed some quiet, relaxing time most of the afternoon as the Iron Hippie went to an ISU basketball game with a friend. At 4 pm, I joined my Coeur Sports Ambassadors for a conference call. These amazing women are so inspirational and enCOEURaging!! I’m so pumped for 2017!! After my conference call, we prepped food for the coming week and relaxed before bed.
Week 2 with Coach Kelly is in the books and a success!!
Weekly Totals: 10 hours & 16 minutes
Swim: 6700 yards Bike: 42.9 miles Run: 14.6 miles Strength Training: 1 hour & 55 minutes + 10 minutes of core work daily
Quote of the Week:
“Small daily – seemingly insignificant – improvements and innovations lead to staggering achievements over time.” ~ Robin Sharma
After Ironman Wisconsin (9/11/16), I took a lot of time off…both physically and mentally. During this time I decided to hire Kelly as my coach to help me achieve big goals at Ironman Mont Tremblant in 2017. This was week 1 of a new chapter in my book as I started training with Coach Kelly!! After having my training train derailed for the last couple of months, it felt great to have the train stop, pick me up, get back on its tracks, and move in the forward direction. The best part…having someone else tell me what to do!! Thanks Coach!! So what did my first week of this new chapter look like?! Here’s a snapshot of my week…
I had every intention of getting up and working out Monday morning, but I had a Thanksgiving hangover, and I don’t mean from alcohol…it was a family hang over. I LOVE my family and am SO grateful and happy they came to visit us over Thanksgiving break, but I was exhausted on Monday morning. As a result, Monday morning was a sleep in. After a full day of work, I hit the gym for my strength training session.
The day started with morning miles with my girl! I love running with her and am so lucky to have an early morning running partner who is reliable, dependable, and keeps me safe! When we got home, I quickly vacuumed the house before getting ready for work. After a full day of teaching, I hit the pool for some chlorine therapy.
The Iron Hippie and I both had swims, so we decided to go in the morning and see just how busy the pool is on a Wednesday morning. Surprisingly, it wasn’t as busy as we thought it would be 🙂 After a full day of teaching, I came home to intervals on Mojo! This was the first time I’ve REALLY ridden her since Ironman Wisconsin and it took a lot of self talk…#courageovercomfort and #nevergiveup!!
It was another early morning run with my girl! I’m so grateful to have her to keep me company, push me to run faster, and keep me safe! After we returned home, I vacuumed the house before getting ready for a full day of science education meetings with my colleagues. My brain was complete MUSH by the end of the day! I met with two different personal training clients after work and then rounded out my day with teaching TRX.
Today was a rest day! After yesterday’s brain mushing session, I needed this rest day today! After a full day of teaching, I ran a couple of errands, prepared dinner, and cleaned fresh produce for the coming week. After dinner and cleaning up the kitchen, I was in bed reading by 7:30 pm with lights out at 8:15 pm. I was exhausted!
I was so tired that I slept until 6:10 am! I guess my body needed it 😉 After eating a quick snack I went to the Iowa State outdoor track for my 2 mile time trial run. I have a mental block when I am at the track…it is a GREAT facility, but this is where I ran for week after week after week after week about 2 years ago when I was injured. After running circles with the white line between my feet for about 2 months, this beautiful track left a negative taste in my mouth. Today I had doubts in my head, but I immediately went into self talk mode…courage over comfort! Never give up! I am strong! I am tough! I am FAST! So the best part about this run?! I had the track to myself for the entire hour I was there! Ha ha! I know what you’re thinking…NO, it didn’t take me an hour to run 2 miles! I was hoping to run each mile at 8:00/mile or faster, but I’m just not quite there yet and that’s OK! I’m happy to be where I’m at! After all, I’ve taken nearly 3 months off of training. After a 20 minute warm up, my first mile was at 8:10/mile and my second mile was 8:05/mile. Hello negative splits!! After cooling down until I had ran an hour, I went to the gym for some strength training. After eating all the food I could find (not really…just muesli) when I got home, we did some house work before I went to the gym for some chlorine therapy! Guess what?! I had the pool to myself for my entire swim! I think that was the theme of the day…first the track to myself, then the pool to myself (no…I didn’t have the gym to myself for strength training, but the room I was in I had to myself for a good portion of my workout). After eating all the food I could find (this time, it was true!), we spent the evening relaxing with friends.
We woke up to snow…on the ground…for the first time this season! Thankfully the ground was still warm enough that the roads and sidewalks weren’t ice covered…just slushy. After an easy 75 minute ride, I ate some food, got ready for the coming week, chatted with Coach Kelly on the phone for almost an hour, and then went for a short and easy afternoon run in our winter wonderland. I rounded out the week with an epsom salt soak, laundry, and relaxing to soak up all of my hard work this week and get ready for more testing this coming week…bike FTP and swim tests are scheduled for the coming week…eek! I’m so happy and grateful to have Coach Kelly write this new chapter with me!
Weekly Totals: 9 hours & 25 minutes
Swim: 5100 yards Bike: 31.5 miles Run: 17.1 miles Strength Training: 2 hours & 30 minutes + 10 minutes of core work daily
Quote of the Week:
“Today I close the door on the past, open the door to the future, take a deep breath, step on through and start a new chapter in my life.” ~Anonymous
The theme for this week was…juggling our schedule around to get workouts in thanks to Mother Nature, visitors, and other scheduling conflicts.
Following the 4 am alarm clock was a 90 minute run! It was a beautiful morning for a run, and I was so happy to be pounding the pavement. I was even more happy to know that my run was a negative split run, which I found out after my run 😉 I followed this up with making homemade spaghetti sauce, making 6.5 dozen zucchini muffins, cleaning up the kitchen, doing some laundry, and mowing the lawn. When the Iron Hippie came home from work, we hopped on the bike for a 60 minute ride that included a 20 minute time trial. I was dreading this FTP test…I don’t know why, but I was. I had to remind myself of “courage over comfort” and “go for the gold; don’t settle for silver” (inspired by the Olympics) multiple times throughout the test, but it worked! I was able to put out a normalized power of 194 watts. This is 6 watts higher than my last FTP test and it gets me a little closer to my goal…200 watts. #progress I am not trying to get there before IMWI, but it would be nice to see a normalized power of 200 watts before 2017! 😉
We started the day with 2400 meters (2625 yards) of #swimlove with the sunrise. I could definitely feel the fatigue in my arms from the Okoboji 3.5 mile open water swim last Saturday, but it also felt good to get moving again. When I got home after swimming, I took the dogs for a walk, and did some strength training before lunch. After lunch, I cleaned up the house, did some laundry (this is NEVER. ENDING!) and cleaned some produce from our friend’s garden (she is on vacation for a week). I met a personal training client at 3 pm, picked up our CSA, and made homemade sweet potato and kale pizza for dinner with our neighbors.
This morning’s swim was a bit of a struggle. My arms were tired, so I finished 2800 meters (3062 yards) of swimming a bit slower than normal, but I pushed through and finished. After refueling, I took the dogs for a walk, cleaned up, ran to the grocery store, I finished the homemade spaghetti sauce by browning burger for each container before freezing them, made homemade beet pesto, cleaned all of the produce from yesterday’s CSA, made an Oriental cabbage salad for dinner, cleaned up the kitchen. It was a very busy day! Since school starts back up next week and the tropical weather has descended upon us yet again this summer, I am trying to get things done around the house so we are ready for the new school year…lots of food prep, deep clean the house, and make sure the cupboards are stocked with household essentials so we don’t have to go to the store for a while. When the Iron Hippie came home from work, we spent 90 minutes on the trainer for some really tough bike intervals before eating dinner, cleaning up, and preparing for the rest of the week.
We woke up early, went to the gym for an hour of strength training before the Iron Hippie had to go to work. I followed this up with eating everything in sight, puppy snuggles, and a morning nap. When I woke up, it was time for laundry and running LOTS of errands…time to stock up on all of our goods and supplies before going back to school! This meant 2 trips to Sam’s Club, one trip to Target, one trip to Walmart, and LOTS of putting away of items! When the Iron Hippie came home from work, we did a lot of food prep for the freezer. It was nice to have an evening with no workout to get stuff done at home and start to prepare for reality to set in!
We woke up to swim, but there were severe storms that had passed through the area over night producing high winds and 4+ inches of rain in Ames. We opted for more sleep and not play the game of “will the pool be open, or won’t it?!” After the Iron Hippie went to work, I went to school for about an hour to start putting my classroom back together for the coming school year. After my eyebrow wax, I went home, snarfed down food for lunch, loaded the car, and met the Iron Hippie across town for our 5 hour ride followed by 30 minute run. When we finished, I ate all the food I could find, took an epsom salt bath, and showered before my sister and the twins showed up to spend some time with us since they are in town with friends. When they left, it was bedtime!
We woke up at 5 am for our 18 mile run. It was VERY humid (97% humidity), but thankfully there were others who were able to join us for most of the run…we only had to run ~4 miles just the two of us. After the run, it was time for refueling, legs up the wall, and an epsom salt bath. We went to our friends’ house for brunch, took an afternoon nap, and then relaxed a bit while watching the Olympics. After dinner we got some froyo and then were in bed by 7:30…so tired!
We started the day with a ride that was supposed to be 3 hours, but due to timing with family events, it was cut just a little short. We immediately came home and refueled just in enough time for my sister and the twins to come over. We went to the aquatic center and spent the afternoon playing on the slide, tube slide, lazy river, diving board, and just soaking up the fun. At 3 pm the Iron Hippie and I came home to quickly clean up before his parents arrived to our house. We unloaded pork meat from coolers into our freezer and then took the twins to Orange Leaf for some froyo…Isabella has been talking about this for a full year! After froyo, my sister and the twins left for home, the Iron Hippie, his parents, and I went to dinner. It was good food and good conversation. When his parents finally left, we were so exhausted that we just kind of fell in bed and melted into the sheets.
Weekly Totals: 19 hours & 30 minutes
Swim: 5687 yards Bike: 166 miles Run: 20.7 miles Strength Training: 2 hours + 10 minutes of core everyday
Quote of the Week:
“I want to get more comfortable being uncomfortable. I want to get more confident being uncertain. I don’t want to shrink back just because something isn’t easy. I want to push back, and make more room in the area between I can and I can’t.” ~Kristin Armstrong