Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Girding my loins

Preparing for battle. Putting my game face on. Settling in for the seige.

I have printed out the IMAZ 2010 periodization schedule and official training starts May 24. I had a little heart attack when I read the first date listed was April 26, but they have 4 weeks of "Pre endurance training" as optional. That's more for people starting from scratch. My original plan from Coach Chrissie back in December called for a month off serious training in May after the Galveston half, but I'm finding that difficult. And already I'm negotiating with myself. "I am taking off 2 weeks for the Tasmania trip in June, so I should go ahead and start training" vs "I don't want to burn out" vs "there are still a bunch of things on my to-do list for May I haven't done" vs "my mental health needs more exercise!"

I did read fellow T3er Jane's blog post about preparing- it's actually a facebook post and not on her blog, but I've cut and pasted it below. So I've got a lot of stuff already up and running: Diet Gourmet meals delivered, bills on auto pay. I did go to Sam's and stocked up on toilet paper, granola bars, fruit cups, soap, and tampons. I've done all the gardening I'm going to do aside from mowing. I've done all the home improvements I'm going to do for now. I've visited the family and warned everyone I'm not going to be available like I have been on weekends. All that's left to do is actually start training!

From Jane:
This isn't about training; it's about how to prepare to organize your life to accomodate Ironman training. Having done 2 Ironmans, and having my life become total chaos (I've had my electricity turned off, didn't mop my floor for 6 months, etc), I've learned some things!

1. Put everything on automatic bill pay. Most people already have this, but I didn't so...yeah - thus why my electricity was cut off (also, I'm kinda disorganized about bills anyway, sigh)

2. Get all your routine appointments out of the way: annual medical appointments, dentist, take your dog to see the vet, car inspected. It's going to be hard to find time during training.

3. If you take prescription medications, ask your doctor for a 90 day supply. Saves on pharmacy trips.

4. Get a maid. Or have a nice roommate/spouse to clean for you. Or accept a messy house. Seriously, after a 100 mile bike ride on Saturday and 18 mile run on Sunday, you are not going to want to vacuum.

5. Get 2 or 3 of everything and put extra stuff in your car and at work: gatorade, gus, helmet, sunscreen, tubes, bike shoes, towels, running shoes, chamois butter, etc. Nothing is worse than driving out to a ride and realizing you don't have bike shoes. For work, it's nice to have extra clothes, makeup in your office, especially if you shower there or at the pool. I have a hair dryer and extra set of makeup in my office.

6. Go to Sam's, Walmart, Costco, whatever and buy all nonperishables in huge amounts: toilet paper, laundry detergent, household items, etc.

7. Food - this is a tricky one. You are going to eat a lot. You will always be hungry. But you want to eat fairly healthy. Ideally you can cook yourself, but that takes time (not really the cooking, but shopping and cleanup.) You can eat at Wholefoods all the time (I did this the first year), but it gets kinda expensive. Decide how you are going to eat the next 6 months. If all else fails, you can always have PB&J for dinner.

8. Social life - uh, not sure what the best advice for this, since I have no kids, no husband and a low maintenance dog. And most of my friends are triathletes and "get it." Hmmm, I know Shawnda made it a specific effort to always spend time with her husband while she was training. Ask the married folks on this one. Personally, I found dating near impossible, especially a new person, unless they are training as well. But then again, is 16 mile training run really a "date"?

Okay, hope this helps. Let's see if I can keep my electricity on this season.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Slaughter Creek Trail

On my list of things to do in May was go hiking. The Slaughter Creek Trail is not far from my house and has been on my radar for a couple of months now. So I finally got out there and it's great.

I think the most interesting thing is the attitude change here. At most older parks, it's a "welcome to your park" feeling. Here it is more "watch yourself, this is our park, don't fuck it up!" There are tons of signs about rules, where not to park (though no signs saying park here, which I found confusing), if there is not parking available, please leave and come back later as the park is at capacity. No dogs. No water available. Don't let the gate lock you in as it's on an automatic timer. Trail is closed when wet. Don't leave the trail. And all the rest about leave no trace.

There is only one big loop of a trail and it's about 5 miles. It is really well maintained, well marked, and there are 10+ markers with little snippets of information. Most of them are about how the land was ill used previously- the ranchers' dump, damage to the soil, water use, natural gas pipelines. There were only 2 with references to actual animals or plants, which is what I would have liked to have seen more of. There was a time when I was working at the YO that I knew the names and habits of a lot of plants, animals, and birds. A lot of that information has leaked out of my brain, but I still enjoy learning new things about nature and our environment.

The trail, again, was great. It was a good morning for a walk, and only 2 other people out on the trail the whole time I was there. Lots of wildflowers, birds chirping, and good time to enjoy being outside before the summer hits. It did back up to some subdivisions of Circle C and you could hear the road, construction noises, and some kids yelling. There was one section that was bypassed, so I didn't do the entire 5 miles, but it was a nice 1.5 hour walk. I do really enjoy hiking. And checking this trail off the list makes me want to go to the Greenbelt- all 12 or so miles of it. Of course, the Greenbelt seems like a crowded mall compared to this trail! But it is really nice to have nature so close to urban areas, and people who live in Austin often move here just for parks like this, so it isn't any wonder that they're crowded. I guess I just need to try to go on weekdays and the less popular trail heads to avoid the majority of the crowd. So when can I get in a full day hike in the next two weeks?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Longest ride of May 2008 is recovery ride for May 2010

In preparation for CapTex 2008 with Team in Training, I rode the Old San Antonio road route out to the Valero in Kyle. It took me about 3 hours total, and I was spent, having to nap to recover afterwards. It felt really hard and was a huge accomplishment.

Saturday, trying out the new bike (more to come on that) rode the same route, able to keep up with other T3ers, in about 2 hours, averaging 14.7 mph, even with a strong head wind on the way back. A recovery ride. And it felt good. Not easy, but comfortable. What a difference!