Thursday, August 04, 2011


Note...I am borrowing the phrase "stupid hot" from Susan. Really, there's just no other way to describe what most of the country is experiencing right now!

Monday, August 1 - Rest day
I started to type July and then stopped...holy crap it's already August! Monday was a rest day. And I'll be honest, my legs were pretty sore from the 11-miler the day before - the left quad was feeling tight, the right shin was feeling sore...ugh, and that was only 11 miles. The fun is just starting! :-)

Tuesday, August 2 - Run & Abs
Normally, Tuesday would be my speedwork day, but my legs were still a bit achey and I have a race this weekend, so I decided to just run 3-miles fairly easy. And, for whatever reason I just didn't feeling like running in the dark at stupid-thirty, so I opted to use the indoor track at work during my lunch break.

The track is on the 8th floor of a building in downtown Houston. Yes, the loops are mind numbing, but it's in the a/c and at least I get to look at buildings and the action on the street below. And, this is one of the only times I actually listen to my ipod when I run (well, here and on the dreadmill). It's nice to have options.

Once the kiddos were in bed, I did Ab Ripper X for a core workout. I have done this workout so often, that I can do the entire workout without watching the P90X dvd. So, I did the entire workout while watching The Wonder Years, lol. I forgot how cute that show was.

Wednesday, August 3 - Run and Swim
Instead of pushing my snooze button too many times, I actually forgot to set my alarm clock. Doh! Actually, I did set an alarm, but it wasn't was the Hubby's alarm (we have a clock with dual alarms). Fortunately, I have an internal alarm clock and it woke me up at 4:18 am. Double doh! I knew I wouldn't quite have time for 5 miles, but I decided I'd run as far as I could in the time that I had to work with.

Before I headed out for my run, I let the dog out so he could take care of business. Ugh, I could feel that wave of warm, moist air the minute I opened the back door - YUCK! When I set out on my run, I was trying not to complain, but damn! It was a sauna. I struggled managed through my miles - 4.89...yes, I should have run that last .11, but I was now late getting into the shower and I was already back at my house. It probably didn't help that I stopped for a minute or two to talk to my "friend". He didn't get into Houston for the 1/2 marathon for the 2nd year in a row and was majorly bummed. Prior to the lotto, he had run the marathon once and the 1/2 marathon 6x. So instead, he is doing The Woodlands 1/2 Marathon in March and maybe the USA Fit 1/2. It's good to have a "friend" out there running at stupid-thirty. And, when I made it back home, I learned from the news that it was 82 degrees outside with a "feels like" of 90. At 4:30 am! Anyway, I have got to get better about getting out the door in the mornings in a timely manner. I know as the runs get longer, I will eventually need to split up the mileage, but it does help to get a large chunk of the mileage out of the way early!

After work, I headed to the gym for my swim. The kids have swim lessons on Wednesday nights and I absolutely hate to miss that, but by the time I leave work, take the bus to the Park & Ride and drive the 20 minute drive to swim class, class would almost be over. So...I've deemed this my swim day - I can get in a shorter swim, then make it home a few minutes before the Hubby and kids get there which gives me just enough time to get something going for dinner. My swim - 45 minutes, 1,600 yds.

Tomorrow, I am going to try to set aside some time for a short bike/run brick. I just bought a new pair of tri shorts, so I want to try them out before Sunday's race....nothing new on race day, right?

Speaking of the heat...which do you prefer for running/training - the hot, humid summers, or the icy cold winters?

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Weekend Re-Cap

Saturday, July 30 – Open Water Swim
The hubby and I went to the triathlon clinic held by Onurmark on Saturday. The clinic would not only give us an opportunity to get some good tips about each aspect of the sport, but it would also give us an opportunity to swim the actual race course for the upcoming Bridgeland Triathlon.

The clinic was awesome. I think it gave the Hubby some great first-timer information and it was a good for me to hear all the things I’d heard before, but may have forgotten. Once we signed in, we headed over to the swim start and got some great open water swim tips from local swim guru, TJ Fry. The crowd was mostly first-timers and TJ did a great job of getting a laugh here and there during the clinic, which I think helped get some of the nervousness out. Finally, it was time to swim.

This is where we swam and will swim again at our tri on Sat. Doesn't look too bad, does it?

The the race coordinators asked people to line up and start in waves, which was excellent practice for the real deal. I could tell the hubby was nervous, but after watching the 1st few waves go, he lined up and made his way into the water. I definitely know how he was feeling…even now I get the OWS jitters. But this time I was actually feeling really calm about everything. I was just ready to swim. And for once, I had one of my best open water swims ever!


I forgot to start my watch, so I have no idea of my time…it wasn’t really about that. In fact, my swim felt pretty slow. What was awesome is that I didn’t have any of my typical “freakout”. AT ALL. NONE! I just swam and kept going. And it was almost all freestyle! I did revert back to my side-stroke when I was trying to sight, but it was one stroke and then right back to freestyle. I did get kicked and bumped. A lot. But, I only worried about what I was doing, blocked out everyone else and just kept swimming! For those of you who remember this post, you know that this is a HUGE milestone for me.

While I don’t want to get too happy about this until I’ve done the same thing at a race, I actually feel like I’ve finally gotten over the hump. I can finally swim (not gasp and panic) in open water!
I wish I could say the same thing for the Hubby. What he experienced was a typical newbie thing. He struggled a bit – it sounds like he had a tough time with the breathing (which has always been my problem). Again, I know exactly how he was feeling, because until this swim I was always getting that ows “freakout” – you know, where you just can’t seem to catch your breath and everything you practice in the pool goes completely out the window! But he finished! I was so proud when I saw him coming to shore…he did it!

I was hoping to get in one more swim on the course, but I think the clinic started a little late and by the time we walked around to the start again, the course was closed. Bummer. The woman coordinating the swim did let a couple of us swim out to the 1st buoy and back, which was nice.

Next we headed over to the transition part of the clinic. Again, great information and great tips from On Your Mark. The hubby and I decided that the clinic as definitely worth the $20 we paid and the drive across town! I think we’re pretty much ready for next weekend’s race…well, as ready as we’re gonna be!

Sunday, July 31 – Long run, 11 miles
I actually considered running my long run on Saturday evening, just to get it over with. But, it was dang hot at 7:30 pm and I knew it would be at least 10 degrees cooler in the morning.

Yummy goodness in every box!

For the 1st time, I ate a Pop Tart before my run. Any excuse to eat a sugary sweet Pop Tart is fine with me - I love me some Pop Tarts, but don't eat them because, let's face it, they're crap. And maybe that Pop Tart helped, because I felt fantastic for a majority of my run. My original plan was to head back to “base” (i.e. my house) every 4 - 5 miles where I could re-fill my hand held bottle, grab a Gu or Endurolytes, etc. But, I had some Bee Stinger Chews with me and by mile 5, I still had some Gatorade left in my bottle so I kept going. I didn’t make it back to “base” until mile 7.5, which is when I re-filled, Gu-ed and took 2 more Endurolytes. At that time, my pace was an unimpressive 11:35. But, I swore I would just run what felt comfortable and not stress about those 11’s. At this point, I still felt great and even comptenplated running 12 instead of 11.

I headed back out for my final few miles. The run still felt great, but around mile 10, I just wanted to be done. (Did I really consider doing 12 earlier?) I made it back to my house and looked at my watch...I still had another .20 to do! Ugh, I hate it when that happens...I just wanted to go inside my house and shower! But, I kept going and finally my watch beeped - 11 miles done @ 11:27 pace. Whoot, I'm back in the double digits! And, I was right - the temps were cooler. Only 75 degrees, versus the normal 82.

After showering and having breakfast with the family (thanks to my sweet Hubby), the kiddos and I hung out while the Hubby went out for his 2 1/2 hour bike ride. What do you do when it's going to "feel like" 102 degrees and your kids are bored silly? You build and indoor tent, of course!

I have a feeling we well be getting out our old sheets again this summer. As much as I love to be outdoors and take the kids to the playground, it's just too fricking hot to be out there.

Do you use pop tarts before your long runs or something else? What do you do to beat the heat on your runs? With your kiddos?