Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Recap and pics

The view at Lake Isabelle.

E did a good job of recapping the weekend, but I think he left out a few things.

Like our romantic Friday night plans of cooking up a yummy dinner together in the kitchen that turned into him watching the debate on TV upstairs and me downstairs nearly cutting my finger off as I prepped pizza toppings.

And he covered many of the Saturday details well, but missed capturing the essence of the day. It went something like this:

6-something a.m. and we realized the power was out. Him: Oh no! The power is out, what should we do, let's get up. Me: The power is out, silly. We can't cook oatmeal. Let's go back to sleep. 7-ish. We are up and at 'em, cooking, eating, prepping for the day. 8:40 in the pool. 10:00 at the running shoe store. 11:07 Rolling out the door on Luci and Thor. 3:17 Heading out the door again, running this time. Turn around was quick between the bike end and the run start. 5:00 Done training for the day. Collapse on living room floor and call it "streaching." Drink Chocolate milk, but somehow I don't really enjoy it, I just do it because I have to start recovery (I was that tired that drinking chocolate milk was work). Shower. Sit in chair and finish the September Better Homes and Gardens. 8:00 What! It's 8! How did that happen? Did we eat any real food yet? We need dinner, but I don't want anything that we have. Actually, all food still seems pretty unappealing. And I still need to bake a pie for tomorrow!

And this was then followed by a yummy dinner of burritos made from leftover Chile Verde (homemade with some garden peppers), pie assembly and baking, and heading off to bed. Where the day went' I'm not sure. But it was a beautiful ride. And the run was challenging, but the data at the end was encouraging (I didn't look at it until Monday, but still, encouraging once I got around to it). Anyways, I'm still not sure I captured how the day just flew by, but it did. And I was soooooooo tired. But in a good way.

Sunday was an entirely different animal. Up early because the legs were so sore from the day before that sleep was impossible after 4:24 a.m. Made church, by bike, AFTER doing a week's worth of dishes (all the pots, pans, knives, and other things that don't go into the dishwasher) and having an awesom E-cooked breakfast of from-scratch hashbrowns, poached eggs, and more Chile Verde. Then up to the high country to hike with Izzy-dog, roommate AL, and E before driving a small chunck of the peak-to-peak highway to see some fall color.

And that brings me to the pics. Enjoy:

E and Izzy-dog in front of Long Lake, just starting out.

Me and Izzy in between Long Lake and Lake Isabelle.

Isabelle the Dog in Isabelle the Lake

E eating an apple and Izzy hoping to get back to that dead squirrel she just found.

Me and AL getting ready to hike back out. Nice view, Eh?

Fall color, CO style. View fromt he peak-to-peak between Ned and Ward.

Goof ball #1, dinner at the Wik and Meyer residence.

Goof Ball #2.

Monday, September 29, 2008

E's Quick Update

A's last post was about what she wanted to do this past weekend to enjoy fall and some of the projects she was hoping we could tackle. On Friday night, we tested out the new bike trailer with a trip to the store while our pizza dough was being made in the bread maker. After that, we ended up making two pizzas . One was comprised of pancetta, pears, Gorgonzola, goat cheese and topped with arugula when it came out of the oven. The other was peperoni, mozzarella, tomato sauce, and olives. Two very different tastes, but both were excellent.

Saturday morning started at bit latter due to a power outage, but we got a good breakfast and then headed to FAC to start our training day. My swim was frustrating as I haven't been getting enough in to match the paces I was swimming all summer. But, got the workout done and headed home to get biking. I came up with a name for the ride during it; the "Double Jimmy" as we headed to to Lefthand Canyon, went up to Jamestown, descended down to 36, did a loop down to Hygiene, back to Lefthand Canyon, went to Jamestown again, back down to Olde Stage and headed home over that. Heading up to Jamestown, we stopped where the pavement turns bad, not the actual town, so A wanted to call the ride the Double Almost Jimmy, but I'm sticking with Double Jimmy. Then we went for a little run of an hour and forty with race pacing. At bit worse for the wear, we ended our training day at five (started at eight thirty). I did find the energy to mow a bit and Amber made a pie, but otherwise we had a relaxed evening.

On Sunday, neither of us could sleep so we got up at 5:30. Pretty wrong if you ask me, but I made a nice breakfast of hash browns, eggs, and pork green chile, while A did the dishes. We biked easy, A went to church, and then we went for a nice hike near Brainerd Lake with our housemate AL. It was Izzy's first trip to Lake Isabelle (not the inspiration for her name, that is Pointe Isabelle back in MI) which she enjoyed tremendously, especially when she found a dead squirrel. We ended the weekend with a nice dinner at Maria and Eric's.

Unfortunately, we didn't get to anything on A's project list, but that's what next weekend if for I guess.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Ahhhhh, Fall!

Fall is here and E and I are gearing up for another fine weekend of training. I am trying to think of fun "date night" ideas for tonight since we have a free day tomorrow and can get started on the training a bit later (i.e. after 7am, when it has warmed up some). So far I have: cook dinner together with my sweety and eat by candle light, sit and chat (by the fire or on our comfy couch) and be happy just to BE, go out for happy hour somewhere..... I am not all that exciting, I know, but some of our best times have been just spending time together, taking the time to do something special, and unwinding for a week of training and work. It is that peacefulness and playfulness that I am hoping to capture tonight. Because it will all change tomorrow when the day gets started.

The main goal of tomorrow is to nail the training. The next two Saturdays have the same kind of format. After a good breakfast (and a little time to enjoy the morning) we'll hit the the pool for a short swim (only 2500 total meters, but some killer splits to try and hit) then do a "hilly" 3-4 hour ride with some good tempo pacing (goal race pace or a little easier), then off to a 90-100 min run with more goal race pacing in the mix.

I am excited for the day to unfold. Weather forecasts are for a beautiful fall day (need to remember sunscreen!). To nail it will take mental focus and good nutrition, but I am excited to get a chance to practice this. I'm also a little nervous, since it is almost like a mini test to see how well we are able to put it all together. These next two Saturdays are like dress rehersals for race day, and I have yet to assemble a half iron-distance race that is even remotely successful. I am ready to see what I can do and have some fun working it and managing the pain and speed that will come with it. I know I can do it, I just haven't yet. On Oct. 18, I'll try again, and after the training we are doing now (and did all summer for IM Canada), I should have a good chance at seeing what my potential is. this past week, my legs and body have been feeling great. The weekday training has been shorter and more intense, but my body is delivering more speed than I have been expecting, and actually feeling "springy" and light.

Anyways, after training is complete, we'll see what we have left for accomplishing projects. It is funny, but every summer since we have been racing Ironmans, we have had to set many things asside. There just hasn't been time around the house to get to everything when we are training the number of hourse that are required during a big month (or more) of training. Somehow, though, now that the training is a bit lighter, I am forgetting all the things that mentally got added to the projects list all summer.

Here is what I remember now: repair the backyard spigot so that it does not leak when on and we can then get the garden drip system on a timer; paint the kitchen and dinning area (one room), insulate the attic with more blown insulation; check the attic for fall nesting activities from any critters, cut dead branches out of the Maple in front; tidy up the shrubs and plants by the sidewalk in front so that it is still passable for the neighbors; any other inside painting: office, loft, guest bedroom, guest bath (this may need more than paint......); get skis ready for winter and racing; organize storage in closets and bathrooms (consolidate, relocate, eliminate, etc.)...... I think we may need to hire some help!

Sunday this week has much lighter training. I'll hit church, we'll knock out our workouts, and then we are hoping to hit the high country and take AL, our roommate, for a hit from Brainard Lake up to Lake Isabelle. It is her last weekend in Boulder before heading back to the midwest, we'll miss her! And the fall colors should be GREAT up there this weekend! Any extra time can be spend on projects (maybe something simpler like muffin baking) and possible getting ready for dinner with Eric, Maria, and little Lucas.

Whew! Should be fun!



Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Weekend Update

A, here. We have been busy, even with the switch from Ironman Training to half Ironman training.

Friday started out with pie and cheesecake baking. Saturday was my company's Summer picnic (just in the nick of time, hello Fall) and there was going to be a bake-off. Staggering the time things needed the oven meant that we were wrapped up in oven/baking activities all night. Then off to bed with thoughts of the early morning ride we had to tackle before getting to eat BBQ.

The bike took E and I over to the mouth of Lefthand Canyon where we started a 16 mile TT up to the hamlet of Ward. We each rode at our own ability levels up the canyon, then regrouped before taking the Peak-to-Peak highway over to highway 7 and descending down into Lyons. Then we rolled along highway 36 down to Jay Road and spun home. We got an early start (see above RE: picnic) and the roads were barren of riders for the first 2+ hours, but then we began to notice many big packs and groups..... with the summer cycling races tapering off, it looks like the big team rides are back.

Interestingly, the last time I did this ride, two months ago, (with coach J because E was getting over being sick) I left the house within 1 minute of when I did this time, covered the same distance, mileage wise (slightly different return route), and was within 1 minute of the total ride time. I still need to look at more data, but it should be a good picture of what I can do on Luci as apposed to the Green Dean Racing Machine (i.e., I rode a different bike) as well as how my legs and heart are doing after more training and racing an Ironman. I already know my average watts were lower for the TT, but I am fearing that my speed was, too.

Once home we changed into run clothes for a quick jog then tidied ourselves up, downed some chocolate milk, and headed for the picnic.

The picnic was fun and low key. The turnout was small, but that meant lots of yummy pork was left for us even though we got there almost an hour after the food service started. My Berry Swirl pie was deemed tops for taste (out of 4) while E's cheesecake didn't place (it was taste or looks.... I think the cheesecake was a winner in both). All in all, it was a good way to visit and recover after a harder morning of training, which was tops on my list for the day's activities since the last time I did this ride I had a miserable long run the next day.

Bake-off Judges and awardee's (last year there was cash involved.....)

Saturday night we kept the mellow theme going and had a nice fire out back on our deck in between bouts of wind. It was good to just chat with each other while watching the flames and just enjoy being (a very nice bottle of red wine nearby helped set the mood, too).

Sunday I was up early for church, then came home to rally the troops (or E, in this case) and head back out for our 2:20 run. This is a standard long run for us (5x20 min at race pace with short rest between) and is one of my favorites. We usually try and run about the same "course" for it to get a measure of our fitness, but that meant using the same roads as the Boulder Marathon, which was being held that very morning. So we revamped and hit Teller Farm trails from the Heatherwood side, with some add-ons (hit the turnaround in the middle of the 2nd interval, ~53 min into the run, so knew we'd be short). The result was something hillier and a tad slower than "normal," but also an excellent change of pace. The hills were more than what I remembered or expected, they were hard, but they were a good, good challenge. And it was a beautiful day to be outside running, and the trails and vistas they offered were worth every sweaty step and labored breath (I actually had a horsewoman tell me that she had heard me coming LONG before I said "on your left." It would have made my college CC coach happy, as it was one of this goals to have all of his athletes huffing and puffing along!). At the end, I knew my legs were going to be sore for a bit and started planning my ice bath before even getting to the car.

Somehow, the ice bath never happened. We got through more chores (and baking of another pie to fill the extra shell I had made Friday before freezing it) to do, as well as a recovery spin on the bike and a trip to Mtn. Sun for dinner yet to get to. And then the day was done, gone the sun, from the hills, from the trees, from the sky. Another good weekend full of really great training (first one like that since Ironman) in the books!


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Rydholm's post-Ironman activities

Two goof balls.

After Ironman Canada, we headed to the Seattle area for a short visit with my grandparents. Both my mom and dad were there the first night, then my dad left to go back to work. The first night we got there, we walked around the gardens and visited a bit.

My grandparents, my mom, and me in front of the blue spruce my grandpa planted years ago.

Me and my mom posing with her black-eyed susan's shirt near the black-eyed susans.

After dinner E and I went up the hill with my dad and picked some black berries. They were very good, and the vines covered everything. I guess this land was bought out by the airport years ago because it is directly beneath most flight patterns and they wanted to get the houses out of there.

It is rumored that some of the black berry vines actually may cover old houses and buildings left behind. They are like weeds, according to the locals. Yummy weeds, according to me! The berries we found had already been well picked over, so they were pretty small and if you weren't careful, still not their sweetest. Again, I just say yum! I wish we had such useful weeds here in Colorado!
The blackberry vines are more than 8 feet tall!

The next day, around lunch time, E, my mom, and I walked down to the sound. My grandparents only live a few blocks away and my grandfather used to walk down to the water nearly every morning.

The beach down at the sound at mid-tide.

We poked around a bit and watched the tide start to come in before heading over to the fishing pier and then on to Anthony's for a Salmon lunch. That was topped off by a 3-way split of their fresh peach cobbler and triple berry cobbler... mmmmm!

Me, picking at rocks. The fishing pier is in the background, and beyond that.....LUNCH!

We visited more the rest of that day, had a nice dinner with my grandparents at their normal table (we had been taking meals with them in the big dinning room at the guest tables), and then left early the next morning to try and beat the traffic before rush hour made the section with construction impassible.

We left early enough to be going through Richland, WA, where my aunt and uncle just build a new house, to stop in and visit for lunch. They have a beautiful new place that is very functional for their active (SCUBA, etc.) lifestyle that was built with many small yet smart details that make it comfortable.
Me (and my aunt) eating more food. Yes, there may be a theme here.....

Then we were back on the road with Boise in sight for our stopping point that night. A little shopping at the Sierra Trading Post labor day sale, a little BBQ ribs for dinner, and we were fast asleep in our comfy hotel bed (we found this new chain (at least new to us) called the Oxford Suites that has been fairly affordable and extremely high quality).

Along the way we saw some beautiful country and strange sites. Like a couple of small grass fires, and canyon walls that looked to be gently graded with something like a large apple peeler (they had stripes going along horizontally on grassy covered slopes, it was strange).

One of the grass fires.

The final day of our trip brought us through Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, and Colorado. We made sandwhiches in the car for lunch from the rest of our supply of fixings in the cooler and stopped in Fort Collins for a tasty supper of artesian pizza and salad. Finally, as the sun was setting, Boulder was in out sites and we cruised home.

Almost home.....

Since then, we have been doing lots of boring things: work, yard projects, house cleaning, getting the brakes fixed on the car, etc. And a few fun things, too, like attending Roller Derby, doing some training with friends as we prepare for the Halfmax USAT half-Ironman distance race near Las Vegas (this is a national championship, wish were were headed out for a certain world championship a week earler, but not this year, sigh), and bike-to-breakfast rides.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A's Ironman Canada race report

I have been fighting with myself over whether I should write more of a factual race report or one based on my thoughts and feelings throughout the day as the race unfolded. I think the latter will be more useful to me in the future, so that is what I’ll strive for. I already wrote a fairly factual report for coach, and may borrow some of that here, but really, what I care about, were my thoughts and feelings and how they influenced my real-time decisions during the race. So, here goes nothing!

It was a calm, beautiful morning for a race. We took care of business quickly: breakfast, dressing, sunscreen, walking to the race, dropping off special needs bags, body marking, avoiding the drunk guys trying to shake every athlete’s hand across the fence as we entered transition, final check on tire pressures, addition of food and drink to the bike, addition of food and drink to the run bag, addition of watch to the bike bag, etc., etc.

Readying the bike

Before I knew it I was in the toilet line for a second time and then body-gliding up and applying the wetsuit. I had ample time to get everything how it needed to be and was now ready to race.

Where we got into our wetsuits, see E’s post for more details.

On Friday, we did a longer swim in the lake and I noticed it took me 5 min or more to warm up, so I wanted a long warmup on race day. Shortly after the cannon fired for the pro’s race, E and I were wading into the water, discussing exit strategy as we avoided the rocks and headed to the sandy section right in the middle of the starting area. A good hard effort straight out towards the fist buoy, and another push back towards the start line, and I was ready to find my position. I settled in right in the middle, where the water line was just at my armpits if I stood on my tippy-toes, straight shot at the first buoys, and with a bunch of fast looking men. And then we waited. And waited. I got chilly. Then chillier. They sang the national anthem (much prettier than ours, and I am picking up some of the words after multiple years, but not the French verse they swapped in this year) and FINALLY the cannon fired.

The start, we are probably at the right side in this picture where it starts to get deep, but that was actually the middle of the field.

Swimming out toward the western bluffs right after the start. The buoys in the back are the return course.

It was, by far, my best starting spot yet at Ironman Canada as I was around some faster folks but the crowd was thinner than last year when we went way to the left. The swim was pretty physical, but nothing scary. People were bumping my legs and feet and hips, but my arms and head were pretty much untouched. After the first start (maybe 50 m in) it got a little congested and people were swimming over people, but much less so than at IM AZ in April. I found feet pretty easily and was able to move through packs as needed to get away from any excessive congestion.

At the first house-boat turn I saw my first scuba diver. They always say that there will be safety support from below for these bigger races, but I have never seen one of them before. At this point, though, you have almost swum up to the shore, and with the lake water being so clear, even in 20 feet of water or so, it was like looking that diver straight in the face. There are two turns in this swim, it is like a big triangle, and the distance between the two turns is the shortest leg, only 400 m or so. After the second turn, it got much rougher for me in terms of contact. And the strangest thing started to happen, the taps to my feet from drafters and nearby swimmers started to make my right hip flexor really sore. I was using a lot of my core musculature to get my feet back up to the surface of the water and renew my optimal body position each time they got tapped. I soon swung away from the buoys (I was nearly in line with them most of the swim to this point) and swam more by myself. I also think I may have slowed down a little bit here as I started to get scared that my day might be done if the hip seized up. Long and steady, I continued my progress toward the beach, trying to reach with each pull to get the hip stretched out. Before I knew it I saw the small, sharp, painful rocks come into view and I knew I needed to keep swimming right over these until I saw sand, then stand and run up from the water to the wetsuit strippers (as an aside, my mom wants to volunteer next year and her dream volunteer job would be as a stripper…..). Official swim time was 1:03:35. If I am able to knock off another 5 minutes, I think I will be in a much better position to draft and relax, less full-contact swimming. Something to shoot for!

In and out through the tent at T1 (nearly forgot my chamois butter, and was adding that on the way to the exit). I also stopped briefly at the bike since I forgot to turn the Garmin on before this and I wanted it to find its satellites, so I stood there and put on my watch and helmet, then ran to the exit with my fast, new bike (Luci, since some of you have asked what the name would be). Total was 4:15.

The bike started well and before I knew it 30 min were gone and we were passing the first aid station at the top of the McClain Creek Road hill. I had been sipping on my front bottle of Gookinade (now they are calling it vitalyte) but decided it was time to take some gel from my gel flask since my goal was to use the beeper on my watch to take in fluids every 15 min (or more frequently) and food every 30 minutes. Nothing came out of the gel flask. I started to suck on the thing, still no luck. I took the top off, took a swig of gel, added some drink to try and thin it out a bit, put the top back on, still no luck. There were 5 gels in this thing, it was most of my calories until special needs…. Eeek! Over the course of the next 3-4 hours, I got most of the gel out of there, (and some on my bike and arm) but I was forced to resort to a “milking” action and lots of patience. Who knew that fuel belt makes bottle tops with the same sized screw-top but different sized tip openings for gel or for drink?

Covering the road to Osoyoos went well. There was a headwind, but that helped keep the speed in check (it is easy to take this part too hard and blow the rest of the race). I did not see too much drafting or packs, and rode much of this by myself intermixed by small sections where I found someone whom I was able to legally use for pacing and mental stimulation. Richter Pass went smoothly (more rolling and less of a straight climb than I remembered), the descent went smoothly, and then on to the rollers. Through this section, I got caught up with a few other racers, mostly men, who were slower than me down the hills but stronger climbing, so we yo-yoed back and forth a bit. As we approached Kereemos, our friend Jim, from Wisconsin, passed me. This surprised me since he usually passes me much earlier and I figured I missed him somewhere when I hadn’t seen him yet. We ended up being back and forth on both the out and backs before I lost him after the special needs pick up. I also saw E in here for the first time. Last year he passed me going up Richter Pass, so this was at least 20 miles later…..I was having a good day!

Then we turned away from Kereemos and started the climb up to Yellow Lake. This is my favorite part of the bike course, and it did not disappoint. I stayed aero as much as possible and kept strong and steady, spinning along at the effort I wanted, and I started to steadily pass people. I saw Jim again and hit the lake feeling good and strong. The hill doesn’t end there, despite what it feels like based on the crowd support right before the lake appears. The last bit of the climb was also smooth, but I cooled it a bit to eat a little. The descent was a bit sketchy this year. I know part of it was the strong crosswinds through the curves, but part was also the new bikes and new wheels, we still need more hours on these fast machines to be fully comfortable with how they handle at higher speeds. All this really means is that I sat up on my hoods a bit through some of the turns, and was mad at myself for “chickening out.”

The drop down into town on the hiway went well. It was fast and felt good. I stretched my legs out a bit and got in a few more calories. My stomach was already feeling a bit gassy. Finished in a strong 5:46:59, which is my best bike split yet (albeit some of my Ironman bike splits have been hindered by a flat and leg cramps). In retrospect, this year’s race has helped shape my goals going forward and I now think a 5:20-5:35 for this course is something to aim for or aim past for me.

End of the bike

T2 was fast and flawless in 2:37. I actually sat on the grass in the tent, dumped my bag, grabbed my number, visor, bottle with powdered gookinade, swapped shoes, and was out of there. All of my “maybe” items were inside another bag that I never opened, since I knew I didn’t need them.

Same corner, start of the run.

The run started out slow and sloshy. My stomach and GI tract were not happy campers, but I found a steady rhythm and started ticking off the miles. At times I felt more like I was plodding than I was running. I heard my parents on this first corner, where they took the picture, then saw Sunny right before mile 2. She wanted a picture but was too busy spectating and almost missed me. She ended up sprinting ~ ½ a block in sandals to get a shot of me hobbling along. I made 2 stops at the porta potties (mile 3 and mile 6 in case you care, then things got a bit better).

This is what running with an upset stomach looks like.

Once through town, you run along the shore of Skaha Lake. There was a fierce wind blowing up from the South off of the lake, so it was tough going (headwind). Finally, near the turnaround, things started to feel better and I was able to run more. I saw E in here, and he passed me a bit later. I kept him in sight for a while before he kicked it up with 6 miles to go. I still had a few small bouts of upset stomach that had me plodding again throughout that section by the lake (these seemed to coincide with any food I took in, but I was still taking gels every 30-45 minutes, which I think was a good thing, in the end), but I was able to pick it up overall (I think a big help was the two nuun tablets I used in my drink bottle. I drank it kinda fizzy still and that got the stomach settled, similar to alka seltzer). With ~4 miles to go, you hit town again, and we also hit rain. It was raining lightly at the runaround, but had then stopped. As had the wind (i.e. we had a headwind out but no tailwind back). My lower legs and feet had started to hurt and I was looking forward to ending my day.

I was also a little sad since the run was too much shuffle for what I had been targeting, I really wanted to run 8:00-8:30 minute miles, but that was not what the body was able to do on this day. The legs were ready, the heart and lungs were ready, the stomach, not so ready.

E (top) and me (bottom) near the finish.

After seeing my parents near the finish area turnaround, I kicked it in and passed a few more racers for a good finish. Run time was 4:00:25, and I ran a negative split at 2:04:53 on the way out and 1:55:32 on the way back. Afterwards I decided should be able to target running under 3:50 here, and that 3:40 or better would be ideal.

Afterwards I headed straight for massage. The back of my left knee had started to tighten during the bike, the right hip flexor was still a tad sore from the swim, and overall leg soreness was present. The next day, my core was so sore. Hurt to laugh, cough, etc, all through the ribs and abs. A walk in the lake, water at mid chest, helped. The lake was still cold.

Us. Afterwards.

This year I met a long-standing goal of mine to break 11 hours. I am happy….. but not satisfied. The bar has been raised and I am ready to go even faster. Unfortunately, I did not sit down and reflect on my race goals from a time-based perspective before the race, so I ended up a little disappointed, unexpectedly. To save time in the future, I think I should state some time-based goals now to at least have as a starting point next year, when we are doing this all over again.

A big “Thanks” to Sunny and my parents for awesome spectating, eating of mini donuts, being agreeable with swapping Theo’s (greek food) for Japanese, standing in the rain, and getting up for breakfast. Based on the photos on my camera, it looks like mom and dad enjoyed their own bike ride up to the vineyards towards Naramantha while we were out there setting the Penticton roads on fire. In the end, good times were had by all!

Official A&E supporter.

The day after.

My parents the day before the race, getting out of the chilly lake.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Yo, random stuff coming your way

Yep, we're still here.

After IM training and racing, there is a natural feeling of "okay, we got through that". We had been hoping that we would be spending some time in Hawaii in October, but when there wasn't any roll down in A's age group and we still felt up for one more tri race this year, we decided to go with plan B and sign up for the Halfmax in Vegas. We still haven't signed up yet, but Jared has scheduled our training around it, so we might as well. A and I both had nearly complete success in Canada except for my flat and her stomach issues at the start of the run, so we're hungry for a good result.

After the race, we drove to Seattle to visit with A's grandparents. We didn't actually make into Seattle as they are a bit south of the city and we weren't motivated enough to do any touristy things. Then, we spent two days driving back to Boulder. Besides stopping in southern Washington to have lunch with A's aunt, the drive was pretty boring.

Since the race, we enjoyed our first and second bike rides with planned stops (ever). The first was to Lyons where we had breakfast at the Stone Cup, with a easy cruise home. The second we stopped for coffee in Niwot near the end of our ride. Unfortunately, our preferred coffee place in Niwot was closed (the Winot), so we went to another coffee shop.

Last weekend was our first real set of workouts and we had a good brick on Saturday and a nice run on the Mesa trail on Sunday (before consuming way too much food at the bunch at the Chautauqua Dining Hall). The first swim since the race this morning was really bad. Actually, I felt okay for the first 1000 or so, but after that it went downhill in a hurry.

Tonight we are meeting with Jared to discuss race plans for this winter and next summer.

We are planning on doing mostly ski marathons this winter with the Mt. Taylor Quad being our "A" race. Last winter we signed up for races as they came which led to me burning out a bit by the end of January. Hopefully, this winter we can get some good results by playing off our strength (that being endurance) more than at the 10 to 20 k's we did last winter. A wants to do the crazy Nighthawk races up at Eldora again, but sprinting through a lot of kids at 10,000 feet in the dark is not my cup of tea.

We did sign up for Canada again, so we know what our summer "A" race is. A has signed up for Lubbock, but I need to figure out my work schedule first. I think St. Croix would be a good option as well.

Okay, enough rambling.


Thursday, September 4, 2008

What I did for my summer (vacation)

So E tells me it is time to write a race report. I think he might have even mentioned it was my duty to sit down and get the thing written. I am not sure why I am dwaddling on this task, but I have just not been in a hurry to fully reflect on the race, yet.

I told him it is because I also want to post pictures, and we still haven't downloaded the camera. Which is true.

And I have been very busy at work this week. Which is also true. And a good thing.

And all last week while still on vacation and traveling, E inadvertently hogged all the computer time. It really wasn't his fault, I just kept falling asleep every time we had any free time to ourselves.

But I also think it is due to a touch of sadness. All summer, we put forth a lot of effort, time, sweat, even some training tears towards this race. And now it is finished. My summer, and my summer vacation (the race trip), is over. I want to let it linger just a little longer.

I did sit down and update my training log for coach for the past 2+ weeks, so I have a skeleton race report from there to work with. It is a start.