Sunday, June 29, 2008

Can we say PANIC in the water? (Loveland Lake to Lake Triathlon)

Ah, my first triathlon in years. Results:

Race time: 3:26:21

487 out of 595 competetors
41 out of 58 in my age group

1500 meter swim: 41:26
T1: 1:41
30 mile bike: 1:42:16
T2: 2:00
10k run: 58:56

Race report:

Boyfriend and I drove up to Denver to stay with Sister the night before. Sis made some Pad Thai (yum), giggled at a few episodes of Season 2 of Arrested Development. Went to bed fairly early only to wake up at oh-dark-thirty. Drove an hour to Loveland, picked up race packet and set up my transition area.

Walked around a bit, rode bike to make sure it was in an appropriate gear. Walked down to the lake and thought "Good God those buoys are far away." Boyfriend actually said that out loud. Put wetsuit on, waded out into the water.

On to the swim...Can you say PANIC in the water? I have no idea what my problem was. I can swim the distance. I didn't feel like I was going to drown. I just could not get my breathing/HR under control. And I didn't get kicked or punched or jostled much either. All I can tell you is that I would think I had it under control, then I'd put my face underwater and then start hyperventilating. Crazy! I probably spent most of the swim on my back, doing some modified backstroke. At one point I thought that my wetsuit was going to choke me, resulting in even more panicky feeling. Considered swimming to the peeps in the kayaks to quit the race, but then was like "I did not drive 2 hours and pay 80 bucks to f*ing quit!" Honestly though, I had no idea what my time would be, so when I finally came out of the water and saw 37 min on my watch, I was thinking "eh, not too bad!" The time above includes the LONG run up to the transition. Boyfriend was great, cheering and running next to me saying nice things all the way to T1.

Then the bike...I realized that my computer wasn't registering any speed/distance, so I hopped off real quick, and adjusted the sensor. All good from that point on. It took me a bit longer than I thought to calm myself down after the swim... HR was way too high for the first 15 mins or so. Once I settled into a rhythm I was good. Passed a few people on the big steep hill near Horsetooth Resevoir, but then was passed on the downhills. When I'm going 40+ mph, I tend to get scared! The last 10 miles were on a nice, paved road. I was able to get in big gear and average 19+mph.

Finally the run...Coming off the bike, I felt a little shaky but that feeling left after a few hundred meters. I need to get my bike fit checked because my left knee was killing me, though after 1/2 a mile the pain went away. Both feet were numb the first mile or so. I skipped the first water point but then walked through the rest of them. I was feeling great - I could have pushed a lot faster, but just didn't feel like it. I was enjoying the race. I felt strong the entire time. Boyfriend hollered out "You're doing great! Only 400 meters to go!" If I were any closer, I'd have punched him. "only 400 meters" my a**. It felt like 400 miles.

I could easily have taken 15 mins off my swim time had I not completely freaked out. I also had all good intentions of following a training plan specific to this race. That went out the window because I focused more on my prep for my running races. I don't need to run more! I need to swim and bike more!

I really really enjoyed this race (once I was out of the water). Its very very organized, lots and lots of awesome volunteers. Great course. This was a nice "welcome back" race after a few years off due to injury and a deployment. The post race meal was amazing - burritos, brownies yum.

I really did enjoy the race. I know what to do now in training to ensure that the 1/2 Ironman in September goes well. I can only improve on the swim at this point! It was so so great having Carol and JJ there to cheer me on and take pictures and support me. We woke up at 3:30am to make it to the race site by 5 - like I said, they're great and the race would have completely sucked if I didn't have them there to support me.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Starlight Spectacular

Saturday night/Sunday morning a whole bunch of us registered for the Starlight Spectacular. Its a midnight bike ride around town benefiting Trails and Open Spaces here in the county. Woohoo! They had contests for best bike (we saw some really really cool tandem cruisers, bikes tricked out to look like big ole motorcycles, bikes with so many glowsticks they looked like moving Light Brights) and best costume (we saw care bears and lots of other fun get ups). About 1500 bicyclists donned headlamps and rode around town at midnight! We had a great time, cruising down the middle of the street while trying not to let the sea of flashing red taillights give us seizures.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Gold Camp Road


A very nice climb today on the bike. It was windy, like I'd turn around because of the wind - windy, but riding up Gold Camp Road was nice. Couldn't feel the wind except on the exposed parts of the road... I rode until I ran out of pavement :)

Snapped some pics with my camera phone. Here you go :)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Through the Viewfinder

I read about this technique in a magazine, or maybe on the internet. Either way, I found my way to this Flickr group, TtV. Soon, I was bidding on decades old twin lens reflex cameras on ebay. Kodak Duaflex and Brownie Starflex were the two I ended up winning - less than $1!

I threw a 4x close up filter stacked with a 2x close up filter on my 50mm. The closer I can focus my top camera to the viewfinder the less I have to crop. A macro lens would be better, but not in the budget.

Took a few today, played with them in Adobe Lightroom and here you go...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Productive? Who? me?

So, today I was fairly productive. Well, in relation to the past week, today I feel I accomplished quite a bit!

1. Networking meeting at 7am.
2. Bike ride at 9 (before the wind!)
3. Violin lesson at 12.
4. Completed, scanned and submitted application forms for a job I interviewed for last week.

Still to do:

1. Run at least 20 minutes.
2. Return overdue library books.

I've managed to not drive my car today. Actually, I've managed to not drive much the past week or so. I filled up my car last Tuesday and I've only gone through 1/4 of a tank :) I even think I can make it the rest of the day not driving...the library is a mere 1 and a half miles from my house. Boy is cooking me dinner tonight and he just moved closer to me - about 5 miles away. I figure today I've saved about $5!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Why I'm Not Running the Garden of the Gods 10 Miler Next Year.

1. Course is brutal - there's not a flat section in the entire 10 miles. See following elevation profile. (Blue shaded is the elevation, red line is my heart rate and green line is our pace/speed. You can see where we slowed for water with the spikes in green. Yes, I am a nerd. My gps watch/HR monitor along with a 3rd party training program for mac lets me analyze my workouts with a mind boggling amount of data.)

2. Race t-shirts are not only ugly, but they don't fit! Argh.

In all seriousness, I probably won't run it next year. B and I discussed that during the race. We really did chit chat pretty much the entire 10 miles, stopped for a bathroom break around mile 5, stopped at every water point, made conversation with random people around us. It is a beautiful place to run - you'd think after twice weekly training runs along the course for 2 and a half months I'd be sick of the Garden. But no, I went running there yesterday!

Friday, June 6, 2008


I should take a picture of my awesome tan lines and post, but it'd be a bit tricky to do myself. Last Sunday I rode the Elephant Rock Century (that's 100 miles on a bicycle for those not in the know). Um, not really prepared for the ride, as the longest ride up to that point was only 30 miles. I just kept telling myself it was going to be a long ride and just ... went. I don't want to say it went by fast, because it didn't, but it was like "oh, I'm at mile 30 already?" and then "hhmm, mile 50, ok" then "wow, mile 70." Mile 80-90 were screaming downhill - at one point my bike computer told me I was traveling 41.5 mph. But really, 100 miles is a long way. I spent just shy of 7 hours in the saddle but with the rest stops I was out on the course for close to 8 hours. Hence, the funky tan lines. I do enjoy that ride, 7000 cyclists including both my roommates! I thought the rest stops were well stocked and the course was a good one, very pretty. I could have done without the wind, but at least it wasn't cold. I'm still in a sort of shock that I actually rode my bike for 100 miles...

Other big things this week - I had a job interview in Denver on Wednesday which I felt went well. Think the guys I interviewed with thought the same thing as they just called for a 2nd interview!

Sunday B and I are running the Garden of the Gods 10 mile race. Woohoo! No more early Tuesday/Thursday training runs...