Last week had a theme of “just one more” and was the last week of school with students for the year! Hello summer!
Swim: 6100 yards
Wednesday’s swim = BOOM! I nailed it!
Thursday’s endurance swim was full of quiet + happy!
Bike: 130 miles
Last week started with a RIDICULOUSLY windy, long, solo bike ride (after doing something very similar the day before, it was tough physically, but even more tough mentally. With sustained winds over 20 mph and gusts close to 30 mph, this was a HUGE confidence builder! Just one more…mile!
Since I only had to work until noon on Friday, I rode my 2nd longer bike ride of the week Friday afternoon. It was a great day to be outside on two wheels!
Run: 29.3 miles
Last week also started with a tough run off the bike. The wind was brutal!
Wednesday started with another long run before work! I’m really lovin’ the long run mid week!
Saturday was a short EASY run! Hot + humid = Midwest summer is here!
Sunday I had a double run day…this was a first for me! Until now, I’ve never done a longer run that was split into a morning run and an afternoon run. I ran in the morning with my main squeeze, and then ran in the heat of the day. Hello summer! Our morning run = hot + humid! My afternoon run was very hot, but the humidity had dropped and thankfully didn’t feel nearly as oppressive as the morning run especially since I had intervals during this run…just one more!
Thankfully the month of May flew by and I am only a couple of days away from summer break!! Here’s a look at what I’ve been up to…
This month has been full of ups and downs as it relates to training. The month started off strong, but took a nose dive in the middle. Thankfully I was able to pull myself back out of a mental slump after some life stress and get back on track to finish strong at the end of the month.
I’ve been working on flip turns in the pool, but they aren’t progressing as well as I’d like. Now that school is almost out, I can spend more time at the pool to master this skill.
I’ve gotten outside on two wheels with the wind in my face! I LOVE the open road on two wheels! Over Memorial Day weekend, I had two back-to-back 70 mile training rides in VERY WINDY conditions! I had some choice words for Mother Nature, but I know I will be stronger because of rides like these!
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!
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: 18.4 miles
Bike Totals: 369 miles
Run Totals: 83 miles
Carrie Cheadle’s blog post “How to be Resilient when Sh*t Happens” really makes you think…do you wear “rose-colored glasses,” or “shit-colored” glasses? How do you view your life and the situations that surround you? Do you lift others up, or tear them down? Are you willing to roll with the punches, or do you spread your shit everywhere?
Carrie Cheadle had another GREAT post…Reduce Stress & Recharge! Declutter, unbook yourself, and make a “To Don’t List” to give yourself time to recharge! I LOVE this idea! Carrie even recommends scheduling this down time in your planner/iCalendar to force yourself to take some time to yourself to recharge your batteries!
Marni Sumbal has some great posts! This month, her post “Stop trying to fit in – be YOU!” really hit home with me! I’ve been working to embrace more of who I am and worry less about what others think of me, so this post was spot on!
A podcast on being Resilient with Mallory Weggemann…WOW! This amazing woman has a perspective on life that everyone should have!
Turia Pitt is an amazing individual who has overcome severe burns on 65% of her body that she endured when she got caught in a brush fire during an ultramarathon. Her spirit, determination, and resilience are something we can all learn from! She overcame so many odds to become an Ironman World Champion!
A No Bullsh*t Look at Sports Nutrition with Breakthrough Nutrition is a must listen to if you race and train with sports nutrition. They talk about the doping pandemic that is flooding the triathlon + running racing scene.
How badly do you want it by Kelly Roberts really struck home with me this month! It brought me focus after some life stress this month and grounded me for the coming build into IMWT!
“Women Who Tri” Author Alicia DiFabio didn’t dive headfirst into triathlon, but got into triathlon more as a psychology experiment. She is part of a 900+ women only triathlon club that has taken off, encourages women in sport, and continues to grow!
Look Forward To:
Summer break! With only a couple of days left of my school year (my last day is Monday, June 5), I am looking forward to having time to train, do house chores, and enjoy my time away from work for a few months!
Swimming in the outdoor 50 meter pool! I absolutely love this pool and wish we had an indoor pool just like it!
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. Some areas of my life I’ve made more progress than in others, but that’s part of life. In my personal life, I am still working on facing those things that truly scare me, but with some regression this month, it has slowed to the pace of a three-toed sloth (that can only move with a maximum speed of 0.003 miles per hour). I am NOT giving up and I WILL overcome these scary things! I am also really working on not letting others opinions of me bother me and I think I’ve gotten much better at this in the last month…I’ve even started doing more runs in shorts and a sports bra (when the temperature has been warm enough) and wearing bikinis at the pool for lap swimming. Am I comfortable…not yet, but I’m facing the fear head on! At work, there have been a lot of changes taking place in preparation for next year. Change can be scary, but it can also be a good thing. I am remaining very hopeful that these coming changes lead to great things! 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 been working on flip turns in the pool and I am SO fearful of cracking my heels on the edge of the pool that I’m not getting close enough to the wall to actually push off of it. I have more work to do in this area, but I will get there! I also stared fear in the face by going out for a solo, long ride for the first time ever! In the past I’ve always had company for rides over 2 hours, but after spending 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!
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 May? What were your May highlights? What are you excited for?
Last week was properly coined “scratch” since the whole week seemed to fall apart and not go as planned. During the first part of the week, we spent the majority of our waking hours at work, or cleaning up dog poop because of an anxious dog. Thankfully our vet prescribed some meds to help with this and by Thursday the diarrhea was under control and we were able to do a load of laundry that wasn’t dog blankets covered in poop! This caused for lack of sleep and missing workouts. By Wednesday evening I was ready to do my long run, only to have that put on hold thanks to Mother Nature’s bad attitude! Hello tornado watch and severe thunderstorms! We had 70+ mph hour winds that blew over dumpsters and semi trucks…so much for that long run. By Friday, the exhaustion had really set in. So much so, that the Iron Hippie fell asleep standing up in the check-out line at the store and the cashier started chuckling. When I looked over at him, I chuckled too and then woke him up! I finally felt that I had some energy to workout by Saturday and was looking forward to my first triathlon of the year on Sunday morning, but Mother Nature (combined with my common sense) had other plans. We woke up to windchill temperatures in the low 40s, with the predicted windchill temperature of 36F and 20+ mph winds at the start of the race. WHAT?! It was May 21…I opted for scratching this race. I don’t have enough warm gear to keep a soaking wet me warm on the bike in those conditions nor did I want to risk getting sick at a sprint triathlon when I have a 70.3 race in 3 weeks. So, I crawled back in my warm bed for 3 more hours of sleep and dreamed that I was watching the live stream (not that it exists) of this sprint triathlon with TJ Tollakson (he was officially registered for this event) sliding across the snow covered grass at the finish line in 1st place. Ha! Ha! 🙂 After seeing posts from friends who were volunteering at the event, I’m glad we scratched this race. The windchill was 35F at the start and lots of people had problems with the temperatures on the bike.
Swim: 1000 yards
Saturday I managed to go to the pool and do a short swim. Since I thought I was racing the next day, I didn’t want to overdo anything and make up for lost time from earlier in the week. It was the only swimming I did this week, but it was better than nothing.
Bike: 14.1 miles
Instead of racing on Sunday, Coach Kelly gave me the option of a longer Z2 ride, or a “mock” sprint triathlon. Since I was feeling so defeated by the week, I opted for the “mock” sprint triathlon, which included a 1 hour ride with a 20 minute power test + a 5K TT run. Knowing that I was mentally not in a solid place, I should have gone with the longer Z2 ride, but I didn’t. This was definitely the worst power test I’ve ever done. Not because of the numbers, but because of my lack of consistency, my inability to stay strong, and my inability to stay focused. I struggled BIG time with this entire workout (not just the bike as you’ll see in a bit) and this only further defeated me for the week. Thankfully my mother always reminds me, “That which doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” I know she is right and I know the tough times are what make us stronger! Onward and upward!
Run: 10.1 miles
I ran twice this week…Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, it felt good to just go pound the pavement. I was trying to keep it easy as I was anticipating a triathlon on Sunday morning. Since I didn’t do the sprint triathlon Sunday morning, the “mock” sprint had a 5K TT run off the bike. This was a struggle. I mentally wasn’t in it and forced myself to not look at my Garmin every 10 seconds hoping to be done! I couldn’t find focus, I couldn’t find consistency, and I couldn’t find any kind of rhythm. I was a mess! During the last 0.1 mile, I was sobbing because I was so frustrated and annoyed with where I was mentally and the exhaustion from the week really let me come undone.
Strength Training: 45 minutes + 10 minutes of core every day
Weekly Totals: 4 hours & 42 minutes
We had all kinds of puppy snuggles last week! Love all of these girls SO MUCH!
Coach Kelly was SUPER supportive of my crazy, stressful week. We talked on Tuesday to talk race strategy for my upcoming 70.3 and for the sprint triathlon that I was supposed to do on Sunday. She also changed my plan for me and gave me choices to try to get me back on track after so many scratches this week. I am forever grateful to have her in my tribe! #trackcatstrong
I had date night with the Iron Hippie Friday night (before he fell asleep in the check out line)…sushi was our meal of choice!
Quote of the Week:
“A scratched workout doesn’t mean I’m giving up on my goals and dreams.”
I was recently asked why I went from self coaching for the last couple of years to hiring a coach. The answer is simple…I felt that my training had plateaued and I wanted a coach who could push me to the next level. For the last 5+ months Coach Kelly at Track Cat Fitness has been pushing me and helping me reach this next level! There are so many benefits to having a coach most of which I wasn’t getting when I was self coached. So, what are they?! Let’s dive into each one!
Accountability…I am no longer the only one who knows when I’m not doing the work and giving my all to achieve my goals and dreams! I have to report to someone who actually looks at my post workout reports and gives me feedback. No more slacking off…its time to get to work!!
Focus/Purpose…The last couple of years, my training revolved around fun, fun, and more fun. If the workouts weren’t fun, what was the point?! Sure, I had goals and dreams, but I wasn’t putting them first. I’m not even sure I was putting them 2nd or 3rd. They were just on the back burner, burning a hole in my mind and heart, as I went through the motions. Coach Kelly has created a blueprint to turn my goals and dreams into a reality. My weekly plan has structure + focus and each workout has a purpose. Sure it is going to take time to turn my goals and dreams into a reality, but Rome wasn’t built in a day!
Knowledge + Experience…My job is teaching middle school students, leaving me little time to stay current on all things triathlon and how to make myself the best possible athlete. Coach Kelly’s job is coaching. She stays up to date on current triathlon research and shares this knowledge with me by summarizing the information that will best benefit me. She is data driven and uses this data to help me become the best athlete I can be.
Motivation + Support…When I’m nervous to go out the door to ride my first long ride by myself, I know I can message Coach Kelly for some motivation and support. Not only does she message me back, but she calls and leaves me a voice message as well to encourage me! Telling me I am a strong athlete and she knows I can do this! It’s the little things that matter!
Push me out of my comfort zone…Coach Kelly knows my goals and dreams and she has forced me to make them a priority! She has pushed me WAY out of my comfort zone physically, which has also stretched me mentally. I am pushing watts and paces that always seemed too far out of my reach and I am overcoming mental hurdles to make these physical changes possible. #grateful
Customization/Personalization…There have been a few setbacks in my training (i.e. getting sick, falling and hurting my knees pretty badly while running, work meetings, life stress, sick puppies, etc.) that have required my plan to be modified on the fly. Coach Kelly looks at where I currently am in my training, what I am able to do (depending on the illness/injury/time constraint), and makes modifications to my schedule. This is what customized training is really all about! She personalizes my plan to meet my goals + needs. #grateful
Believing in me…Coach Kelly BELIEVES in ME! She believes in me on days when I am lacking belief in myself. She believes I can achieve my goals. She believes I can achieve my dreams. Coach Kelly BELIEVES in ME!
Investing in me…We have spent many hours on the phone talking through my goals, race strategies, and life. Coach Kelly is determined to make me #trackcatstrong this year so that I am more fit than ever before as I toe the line at Ironman Mont Tremblant this August!
Effectively communicates with me…Through effective and open communication, we work together toward the same goals. Coach Kelly knows my goals and dreams. She has expectations of me as an athlete, and I have expectations of her has a coach. We communicate with each other about aspects of training, racing, and life frequently.
Coach Kelly and I have created a strong coach/athlete relationship built on trust and open communication that will only continue to become stronger with time! I’m super excited to see where we go together in the future!
Do you have a coach? If so, what benefits do you experience in having a coach?
The month of April seemed to drag on forever, but overall, it was a pretty good month!! Here’s a look at what I’ve been up to…
I’ve been working on flip turns in the water to help me be more consistent with my pacing in the water. I’m looking forward to have this flip turning down, so I can really focus on getting faster in the water! May will be the month I master the flip!
I had a BIG month of building strength on the bike, and it REALLY showed on my most recent FTP challenge…hello 16 watt increase and crossing over the 200 watt barrier!! Wahoo!!
I ran my first 1/2 marathon of the year at the Drake Road Relays on Saturday. It was cold + windy, but perfect running weather! I was hoping for a much better outcome to my race, but it just wasn’t in the cards for me on this day. I’m still very happy with my overall finish time and have lots to be thankful for!
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: 13.15 miles
Bike Totals: 226.7 miles
Run Totals: 66.6 miles
After You by Jojo Moyes is an inspiring book for those trying to move on after a loss. “Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. After the transformative six months spent with Will Traynor, she is struggling without him. When an extraordinary accident forces Lou to return home to her family, she can’t help but feel she’s right back where she started. Her body heals, but Lou herself knows that she needs to be kick-started back to life. Which is how she ends up in a church basement with the members of the Moving On support group, who share insights, laughter, frustrations, and terrible cookies. They will also lead her to the strong, capable Sam Fielding—the paramedic, whose business is life and death, and the one man who might be able to understand her. Then a figure from Will’s past appears and hijacks all her plans, propelling her into a very different future. ”
Running Man Charlie Engle is an ultra endurance runner, who has overcome alcohol + cocaine addiction that plagued him in his early 20s. He shares his adventures and accomplishments in life, how he stays motivated, and his upcoming plans of running from the lowest place on Earth (the Dead Sea) to the highest place on Earth (Mt. Everest). Charlie Engle gives a whole new definition to the word CRAZY!
Louis Cole is CRAZY! He gave up a job + living in a house to live an adventurous life. He started filming his adventures and posting them on YouTube. This became his career…doing what he loves and sharing it with others. “Everyone benefits from being put in situations where you are challenged and all of those kinds of things. You don’t get anything from staying in a comfortable bubble.”
Mind Power Training:
I had a 6 week bike block that I was immersed in for most of April. This required a LOT of mental strength and fortitude. During this block, Coach Kelly has also immersed me in a mind power block. The focus of those 6 weeks…to make me #trackcatstrong both physically and mentally this season! I had a homework assignment every day. While I didn’t provide all of the homework assignments I completed, I have laid out the basics of 16 assignments and my responses to these assignments from this block. I feel these 16 assignments were key to helping me build my mind power.
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. Some areas of my life I’ve made more progress than in others, but that’s part of life. In my personal life, I have remained alcohol free in 2017 = WIN! I am still working on facing those things that truly scare me, but this is going at a turtle’s pace…ok…maybe a snail’s pace. I am NOT giving up and I WILL overcome these scary things! I am also really working on not letting others opinions of me bother me and I think I’ve gotten much better at this in the last month. At work, there have been a lot of changes taking place in preparation for next year. Change can be scary, but it can also be a good thing. I am remaining very hopeful that these coming changes lead to great things! 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 been working on flip turns in the pool and I am SO fearful of cracking my heels on the edge of the pool that I’m not getting close enough to the wall to actually push off of it. I have more work to do in this area, but I will get there! I’m determined that the month of May will be full of progress as I learn to flip in the pool so I am able to push off the wall without drowning or ending up in another lane. I also pushed myself HARD during my FTP challenge, while keeping my mental focus STRONG! This was very uncomfortable, but it helped me achieve my goal of reaching the 200+ watt threshold! Getting comfortable with the uncomfortable = progress! My 1/2 marathon road race…SO hard!! From the very beginning, my legs felt as though they had been loaded down with lead. They were SO heavy! (Side Note: I think I got my pre-race massage too close to the actual race. Lesson learned for the future!) At about mile 6, the uphill battle began. I was climbing and climbing and climbing some more! I’m so proud of myself for changing the negative channel in my head and pushing myself hard all the way through the finish chute! I was literally talking to my legs while running… “Come on legs, you can do this! You are light as feathers! Don’t quit on me now legs! Just one more mile! Just one more mile!” People around me probably thought I was going crazy…if they were even listening. 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 April? What were your April highlights? What are you excited for?
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!
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! 🙂
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! 😉
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
We had some special deliveries this week from Sound Probiotics and Barnana…SO awesome to have these amazing sponsors supporting us this year!
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!
I ended the week with puppy snuggles with my favorite girl! She makes the best pillow!
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