Monday, March 30, 2009

The Wheel in the Sky Keeps on Turnin'

Me, Bree, and Katya in our spiffy race suits care of Travis and Splish! Thanks Travis!!

So I found out that when you swim the Ironman course (and then some) and follow that up with some TT & interval bike work, the next day bike a volcano and run 800 intervals after that, follow that up the next day with another hard open water swim session and then run MOST of the Ironman course (30km) that afternoon, then wake up the next day and jump into the early morning masters swim session and go ride 80% of the Ironman bike course (in crazy gusty winds...I have a new respect for the bike course here!), then take one day of 'rest' and do a race on Sunday....your legs won't really like you after!! I had to take a nap mid-way just typing what we have done this week!

After a few monster weeks of training out in Hawaii, the Lifesport crew capped it off with the Lavaman Olympic distance triathlon. I've done this race twice before and it's always a blast. This is by far the most exhausted I've been before a race though! I was a little apprehensive about how I might perform on race day, but decided to embrace it for what it was, a great race, in a great place, and a great opportunity to fine-tune my race skills. Turns out that since I haven't raced since that fateful day in August, I had some kinks to work out!

I'll spare you most of the details but here is a race summary;

  • The game plan: solid fast swim, swim with the boys. Bike moderate but strong, run fast and test the legs off the bike.
  • The actual outcome: Wasn't very alert at the swim start, missed the draft and swam without a draft the whole way, down 1min from where I should have been. Bike, just did what I could do to keep the wheels turning, tried not to be too disappointed when my teammates Magali & Bree (both amazing cyclists!) blew by me and my legs were screaming! The run, actually felt ok, was down about 2 min out of T2, so I had to push hard to pass Bree about 3 miles in. Ran 36.36 on a course that has lava rocks, sharp coral and deep sand for the last 2 miles! Finished off with the win.
  • Overall; considering how tired my entire body is, not a bad day, happy with how my running is progressing and just love this race. How often do you get to finish a race on the beach?

A Lifesport podium sweep!!

After the race was the epic Journey concert!! It turned out to be a fun night and ended at my bedtime...9:30pm!!

Now it's a couple more days in Waikaloa then over to California for the Oceanside 70.3 race on April 4th. Hopefully the legs will be ready to perform by then! As Coach Paul says, "it's overload and then recover".....come on legs, recover!!!



Thursday, March 26, 2009

Kona...Up, Up, & Busted!

Well I made it to Kona on the worlds smallest plane. I didn't see them put my bike onto the plane and was a little concerned when the pilots walked us out onto the tarmac to our plane. Then when we finally landed and I looked at the luggage hatch, I thought for sure they left it on the runway! But to my surprise they managed to wedge it in there! There was some stunning views of Haleakala, I'll have to come back and actually bike it next year!

The pilot walking us to the single prop Cessna! Bridget, I should have gotten you to fly me there!
Goodbye Paia!
Haleakala from the plane.
Ancient lava cool is that!
Hello Big Island!
That's a tight fit!
Once on the Big Island we had a couple 'recovery' days which included a 5500m open water swim set with 3x1k efforts!! Then it was back to business. A climb up Koloko (Lance Armstrong biked it this year). It's one steep hill--some @17-20% grades...nasty!
The start of the climb:
Here's where I got evidence of coach giving me a push! It was the sweetest 3 seconds of the ride! I did witness the pushing of another fellow rider but there is no evidence... Me 'postmaning' it (cutting the slope by going side to side) to make the last final few meters of the climb!
The gang at the top! Not sure, but I think I beat Lance's time up or was very close anyway!
A QUICK descent and then off to the track for a set of 800's...ouch!
The day wasn't complete until we finished with a swim in the dark...I was a bit dazed and confused for this swim!
Today involved another open water session, I love swimming out here, and then a 16-17mile run on the ironman course. Here is my favourite running buddy, Mags, and I hitting the water station on the highway:
Few....that was a long post. I'm exhausted! Or in Dutch..Ik ben doodop! Time for bed. 5 hour ride on the ironman bike course tomorrow but before that a 6am dip in the pool! That should have my legs feeling fresh for the local Lavaman race on the weekend...Love it.
Hope all is well! Miss you all!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Offerings to the Biking Gods....

Where did I leave off? I'm not even sure...let me read...oh yeah, recovery long ago that seems! Here is a pic of our recovery swim that day...all smiles!Me and my bike (yet to be named) are still not getting along all that well. Tuesday was a big set; a hill repeat/TT bike followed by 8x1mile repeats off the bike. I rode the entire ride with a insanely high HR and couldn't seem to get it to settle down. My TT was less than stellar, so I was hoping for a decent run set. To my surprise my legs felt strong on the run set and I had a great set of miles, so the day was not lost. Wednesday was supposed to be a hilly 4 hour ride, I was actually looking forward to this ride. Right from the start my bike started making a noise that was not good and I was forced to detour to the bike shop for a quick fix, leaving me riding solo for 4 hours! It turned out to be good quality time with me and my TT bars...but I still had a noise coming from my bike while I rode. So, I took my bike into the shop AGAIN the next day and found out that my rear quick release was broken (maybe from my fall?) and my wheel was not being held in correctly, rubbing on my brake pads and making the noise! I'm not sure if the Hawaiians have a Goddess of bike (like Pele the Goddess of fire) but I have been giving her offerings and praying to her a lot lately...

There was also a few swims mixed with those above workouts, nothing earth shattering going on in the pool, loving the open water though. Today involved a triple workout. An early morning interval workout that I would like to forget...I nearly tossed my cookies and my legs felt like cement from the first interval--I just toughed this one out, we followed this up with a ride where my HR was way too high in warm up but a humpback whale waved it's fin at me when I rode by...and then a 10x400 pull set in the pool. Good times. Love it.

Nothing like a training camp to kick your butt into gear. I think I'm suffering a bit from the 10-day hitting of the "Wall" (made it to day 11, see my January post on "the wall").

Tomorrow is another day of long riding. Please join me in offering Cadence, the Goddess of the Bike, a little lube or a spare tire. Perhaps she will be in a good mood tomorrow and give me a crash free, mechanical free, strong legs and safe ride!!



Monday, March 16, 2009

Some days are tough, some days make you tough..

It's been a busy week. Getting back into the swing of training camps always takes me a bit of time to adjust. Different schedule, different training grounds, different (but great!) training partners, different weather (-25 to +25 degrees., wind & rain), new bike and actual pavement to ride on, different bed to sleep in, different birds to wake me up....the list goes on! While adjusting to the new surroundings and environments there have been some tough workouts to get through too. As I like to tell myself when the going gets tough in a workout...Love IT!!

Here is our ghetto-fabulous looks worse from the outside, quite cozy on the inside:

Many of our bike/run workouts have been in the rain and wind lately. The picture below pretty much summarizes the weather the last few days (note the bending of the palm trees). I can't complain though, at least I'm not wearing 3 layers of clothing while training!

Saturday had me and Heather G. doing a separate workout from the group (sniff, sniff, but I'm here to train and coach knows best...I think..). We battled the elements on the bike, altering our TT route so that we rode into the gale force wind for a portion of it so we didn't get home in 5mins with the crazy strong tail wind! I thought we might miss the rain but it got us on the last close!! Then we ditched the bike and set off for an hour run at 70.3 pace, we ended up running pretty much the entire thing uphill, into the wind on a dusty gravel road, but miraculously the clouds went away and sun came out to make it just a little tougher! The wind gods were out to get us but I wouldn't give them the satisfaction, they even put in a little extra effort on my last minute of running up a steep hill--I leaned into it and ran a little extra over the top just to show them I won!

The rainbow at end of the day after our swim: Now, Sunday was a different story. It was supposed to be a 4.5hour hilly bike ride. We woke up to pouring rain and of course the wind. Being my usual thorough self, I found a weather radar site for Hawaii and saw that we were just on the edge of the storm and thought if we rode East, we'd be out of it pretty quick. We sucked it up and set out in the drizzle. It was a little slick on the roads, so I was riding pretty slow, then I rounded a corner and came upon a mud-slick and before I knew it, me and my new bike hit the pavement! Ouch! I made Heather turn back and I limped my way home. Here's the aftermath, could have been worse if I had time to put my hands out!Today, we're at Monday, recovery day. It involved a sleep in (7am), a chai tea in Paia, a splash in the ocean, a whole lot of driving around doing errands and a b-day party for Coach Lance's son. Now I am getting the gear ready for tomorrow--we have a couple big days ahead....wish me luck! I'll update if I survive them!! Hopefully I stay upright on my bike!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Made it!

Made it Maui! It's been a bit of a busy week. My Team Timex bike actually beat me here, so I had to put it together and make adjustments to it on Tuesday and then head out for a ride that day.
Here she is; note the beautiful Dutch orange paint job!!
We had a pretty big day yesterday which involved hill repeats and a TT section (race pace stuff) on the bike (3 hour ride total) and followed that by 6x1 mile repeats running off the bike. Ouch! After a sub-par bike performance (I'm blaming the jet-lag!!), I had a little heart-to-heart with myself after the first mile repeat (went something like "suck it up princess") and managed to pull off a good run session and finish with a smile. Oh yeah, then we froze in the pool during a recovery drill workout to finish off the day.
Here's the group before we headed out. I'm on the far right. It was a chilly-wet day to start the ride!!

Today was my first open water swim workout since August! It was pretty choppy out there and sometimes I didn't actually feel like I was swimming--more like windmilling and taking in a bunch of salt water, but I was happy to be out in the Ocean!!

The weekend has a long bike/run (at race efforts) one day and a hilly 4:30 ride the other plus a swim somewhere in there too. I'll let you know how it goes!!

Hope all is well across the Oceans!

Monday, March 9, 2009


After a 1.45 hour delay in Calgary, I've made it Vancouver and currently waiting for my flight to Maui, for a training camp, in the AC lounge. After circumnavigating the world last year, I managed to finally gain 'elite' status with AC, so I'm taking full advantage of it!!

It was -25 in Calgary this morning....I'll report back the temperature in Maui once I get there. should be a good 50 degree swing in temperature in 1 day. I'm looking forward to get back into training, this past week was a recovery week and I ended up getting sick, so my training was pretty minimal. Hopefully I can get back to where I left off before the bug, I hate being sick!!

I'll report back once I get into a routine in Maui!
Stay warm!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Lisa Likes.....

I stole this idea from another Triathletes blog. Apparently it's something that is going around Facebook (I wouldn't know since I don't 'do' Facebook). Since I seem to only know how to post about how much winter sucks, I thought this might be fun instead! You just google your name+likes, ex. Lisa likes... and see what comes up. I didn't click on any of the links though...

First here is an actual list of what 'Lisa likes about winter'...trying to be positive here!!

Lisa likes....(about winter)...

  • crisp, clear blue Alberta skies when I am out running, no lack of sunshine here in the winter!
  • the view of the snow capped mountains to the west during the clear days.
  • Right after a big snowfall when everything is covered in white.
  • kicking off the snowy-slushy-dirty buildup on my car mud flaps (if you live in a cold climate, you know what I mean!)
  • all the winter sports I've put on hold the last few years (so I don't injure myself!), backcountry skiing, downhill, tobogganing, ect.
  • wearing my wool socks and sweaters that were put away last spring
  • that moment when you notice that the days are getting happened to me a few weeks ago after leaving the oval after a run workout. It made me smile!

Now my googled 'Lisa likes....'

  • Lisa likes to woogie
  • Lisa likes Rock N' Roll lyrics
  • Lisa likes Bon Jovi
  • Lisa likes my shovel skills
  • Lisa likes London and lunch and lullabies
  • Lisa likes Blue Duck Tavern
  • Lisa likes to have fun outside (this is true!)
  • Lisa likes the banana pancakes

Not sure what a woogie is and not really a fan of Bon Jovi but I think I like the rest! I'll have to find this Blue Duck Tavern!

Training is going well. I'm onto a recovery week....finally a couple days were I don't have to run!! My legs need a break after 2 big weeks back to back! I officially finished off at NuVista last week, so I guess I'm officially an unemployed triathlete-bum! Excellent!

7 more days (onto single digits now!!)