Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Pre-Triathlon Training Week 2

Lets see, this whole triathlon talk started a mere two weeks ago and I am already fully immersed!! I have gone from a sprint length tri in September to an Olympic length in May, (thanks to Adams confidence in me); I picked up my “real” bike on Sunday (thanks to Laura and Rose) and I will have my official race program design at the start of the year (thanks to Joby).

I keep waiting for that “oh shit” feeling to hit me but it hasn’t yet. So far I am just super excited and I am having a ton of fun doing new workouts!

This is where I was going to update how great this week was compared to last. Yet I realized distance, volume, speed...it really doesn’t matter. Yes, I have improved since last week. Yes, my workouts have doubled, speed and intensity have increased..yadda yadda yadda...

But then again.. its really not about the race. It’s not about the date or the time or the mileage. I am not a pro triathlete so it’s not like I am going to even come close to standing on the podium. To which my husband responds. "So why are you doing this? If you can’t win what’s the point?"

Shrug I don’t know...good question. What is the point?

I have watched my sister and her husband battle through injuries, weather, personal obstacles, two jobs etc and yet they still train. At times, I have looked at them and thought the same thing, “What is the point?”

I started out thinking I was just going to do this as a way to mix things up, find new motivation and lose that last stubborn 5 lbs! (I mean who wants to train with an out of shape trainer, right?!) Yet it in the back of my mind I already knew it goes much further beyond that.

There is all of a sudden this driving force inside me that keeps saying, “You are on the right path, this is where you need to be, go here.”

As the saying goes it’s not about the destination but the journey. As far as what’s the point, I have no idea. I’m listening to the voices inside my head (yes, I hear them and yes, I do what they say!). Point or no point, I am running in the rain, swimming on windy days and pushing myself further.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Pre-Triathlon Training Week 1

Technically, I am only in my pre-training section of my triathlon training. I am mostly just getting a feel for being in the water (since swimming is a weak point) and running (also a weak point). I'm also starting to combine swimming and biking or biking and running together.

Bike to run: According to my sister the hardest transition is the bike to run. So I started there first. I decided to do a 60 minute spin class and then one mile on the treadmill. I haven’t been to a spin class for oh about 6 months so it was intense but manageable.

The run however was a different story. It started out ok. I remember thinking I got this! No biggy! Triathlon smathlon! But then….. (insert dramatic music here) my left IT band started cramping up 5 minutes into my light jog. I slowed it down a bit and the pain eased up. Two minutes later my hands feel like they are going numb. Ok I am going to walk it out. I am looking at my mileage I have only gone a half mile! Urgh this is terrible!

I heard Roses voice in my head reminding me I just need an easy pace and that triathlons are about being efficient. In karate Mr. White would call that effortless power. It apparently will come in time. I remind myself this is day one. Chill!

I step off the treadmill and every noise in the gym fades to an almost silent. Panic!!! I am going to pass out in the gym. Oh No this can’t happen! I am a personal trainer for gods sake!!! Alas, I don’t pass out, I don’t have a heart attack and I am not even sore the next day. Off to the pool I go the next morning.

Swim Day: I have been advised by my coach, aka Rose that I need to be in the water at least two days a week. I swam a few times with Rose and Adam this past year so I already know that even though I thought I was an Olympic swimmer…ahem, I am apparently not.

I am equipped with my swim board, goggles, ear plugs, cap, fins, hand paddles and that floaty thing that goes between your legs AND a custom workout from my coach! Lap one:  wow I am doing pretty good! Lap 5: I think I have drunk half the pool. Lap 10: hand fins keep flying of or alternatively rolling me onto my back like a turtle!

Note to self: Need at least 2 days in the pool – if not more!

 Run Day: Currently I run 1-2 days, about 2 miles in the (dry) sand. So when Rose told me to run as a warm up before my regular weight workouts I thought shrug, no big deal. I know, you would have thought I learned my lesson on underestimating back on the bike /  run day but nope!

I hopped out on the gym track and busted out a relatively easy mile. I figured I would run a mile, lift weights and then run another mile. The first ½ mile pretty easy. The second ½ mile was boring and I started getting uncomfortable. I tell my clients all the time to switch up their cardio because your body gets used to what you do all the time. Here I was discovering my own advice is pretty good. Having run in the sand for the last 2 years vs. never running on a track I started to utilize the same muscles but in very different ways. Fatigue started creeping in my ankles, knees, hips, low back. I thought, ok I will go lift weights and come back to this.

A few walking lunges, squats and burpies later I am back on the track. Lap one of eight: no way am I going to make it around 8 more times!!! I call it a day on lap 4. I roll, stretch and go home.

I wake up the next morning and can hardly walk. Thinking back on it I should never have combined walking lunges and running in the same day, at least not to start. I end up taking the next two days off and just do yoga.

I think this experience will be a lot like when I first started hiking long distances in a single day. It was a lot of trial and error and making all those small adjustments. Thankfully, Rose and Adam have already gone down this path so I get to pick up a lot of little tips from them! I have already learned so much this week I know that next week is bound to be more successful!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

TRX Suspension Training Course Review

I bought a TRX Suspension Trainer when I first started training myself. I was tired of working out in the gym and the TRX suspension trainer seemed like a great way to take my workouts outside. I bought a few of their online videos (which are awesome by the way) and I have been hooked ever since!

I love the TRX so much that I wanted to share the TRX experience with all my clients and to officially do that I needed to get certified.

I am not going to lie when I got the reminder email for this course I thought, Urgh! Why did I sign up for this in the middle of the holiday season?! However, I set my alarm for bright and early on Sunday morning, made my lunch and off I went.

As usual, my obsessive-compulsive self was there 45 minutes early. I was warmly greeted by Jonathan Yu, co owner at Yu Bee Fit and Tahneetra Crosby, TRX instructor.

Right out of the gate I knew that with Tahneetra’s upbeat personality and passion for TRX it was going to be a great day!

The overall layout of the program was very well organized. We reviewed each exercise in great detail, received a terrific user guide that we could make notes in and did lots of hands on work with partners. Of course, if you are ever going to have a room full of trainers try to learn something, you know you are going to have to let them workout at some point if you want them to concentrate!! So halfway through Tahneetra lead us through a kick-ass 15 minute workout!! 15 minutes might not sound like a lot but when you are moving through a TRX workout, using your whole body and “all core all the time” 15 minutes was enough!

It was a great day and I learned a lot. I can’t wait to take everything I learned and share it with my clients! The best part about TRX is that ANYONE can use it, ANYWHERE at ANYTIME!! How great is that??!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

To Tri or Not to Tri? That is the Question

Deep breath in and here it goes…This year I am going to train for a triathlon. There it’s public. No going back now.

My first introduction to triathlons was in massage school. We worked the Pacific Coast Triathlon in Crystal Cove. We provided massages for all the athletes both pre and post race. My general overall impression was that these people are insane!!

Post race massages

My second introduction was watching my sister at the same event in 2010 finish her first triathlon. I had watched her train her heart out, battle fears of swimming in the ocean and see her cross the finish line! I was so proud of her! But generally still over all impression: these people (my sister included – sorry Rose!!) are insane!

Roses "What the *(&^ am I doing here" face!"  Pac Coast Tri 2010

In the last two years I have watched Rose and her husband Adam dive head first into training and triathlon mania. I would list all their races but it would be too long! For something that started out as a, “Hey I am gonna try this” to the full Ironman, it has been fun to watch them grow and change not only as athletes but also as people. This blog post explains it best and brought tears to my eyes.

Rose finishing the Ironman 2012!

 As I tracked them both through the Ironman in Arizona the idea of doing a triathlon myself started creeping in. My first thought was, “Uh oh”. Knowing the way my brain works if something starts popping in it’s not likely to just go away.

I tossed the idea around in my brain over the Thanksgiving holiday figuring it would disappear as soon as I got back to the hustle of regular life. But it didn't. Still there in the back of my brain was a little voice that said, “Uh helloo? I’m still here! Helllooo?”

So I thought, “Ok I will just casually ask Rose about training for a triathlon”. You know hypothetically speaking of course. Well two hours later I had two complete triathlon training workouts in my inbox. Again I thought, “Uh Oh”.

I shrugged it off and told myself that I would just do the workouts and train like a triathlete. I could get all the benefits of doubling up on workouts as well as mix up my current conditioning and then just skip out of the actual race.  I felt reassured with my new decision, “Yeah I will just train like a triathlete and not actually do one, that will work. Phew!”

I printed out my new training schedule from my sister and off I went. In the back of my mind though I already knew that there was no way I was going to train and NOT do the race. Yet the first time I said it aloud my first reaction was WHAT did I just say??!!

This brings me to this blog post. Say it aloud and make it public. Here we go. Pacific Coast Triathlon or bust!!!!

My third triathlon experience will most assuredly be different as I will be a participant. Hey wait does that make me insane?! Probably!