Thursday, May 29, 2014

Catch up Thursday

It's been awhile since I've blogged, so much training and sweating and LIVING this sweet sweaty life going on.  I leave bright and early tomorrow morning for an EPIC 4 day weekend away with 7 other girlfriends and NO HUBS, and NO KIDS!  Oh and I'm running my first Half Marathon of the year at a WINERY!  Going to be good.

So I thought I would do a little catch up post.

While my first half marathon is this weekend, the big heart pumper is that I do my first DUathalon in 3 weeks! On the May long weekend I did a practice mini "OLY" Du to see how it would feel.  I geared up and even put on my new bike jersey, which is really fitted and not like my usual bubble tops I like to work out in.  Looks great standing up, but bent over on a so much.  But hopefully I will be a blur and no one will notice :) I joke but it's a big deal for me to put on something like this and feel fairly confident and you know what I do feel fairly confident.  Do you know why? It's because I feel confident in what my body can do! vs. what it looks like, something I need to embrace more.

I ran 3.2km, biked 44.4,km and ran 6.4km and it was AWESOME!! I almost died on the hills but I did it!  My legs felt like rubber the last km of my run but I did it!  It was important for me to do this workout so I could have a good idea of what the actual Olympic will feel like. I think I'm ready. The best part is that there is no pressure for this race.  It's about getting used to the DU transitions in a race setting and trying something new.  

I'm enjoying biking a lot.  I actually look forward to my bike rides.  I can't say I look forward to a run and yet I love running.  But when running I am looking at my Garmin constantly and worried about my pace and pushing myself.  When I bike, I just ride.  It's freeing and fun, kind of like being a kid again.  Biking is challenging in a different way for me.  It's making me push past my comfort, exploring new routes and not sticking to the same old same old safe things.  Then there are the HILLS!  Biking is challenging me physically.  I get out of breath at the top of the hills gasping for air.  I don't gasp when I run, even when doing speed work (mmm maybe I should lol).  I can't dial my tension back on the hill like I can in a spin class.  I have had moments of panic approaching a hill where I have thought I can't do it, what if I slow down and fall?  I've come close to giving up before I start.  But I have always made it up, and sometimes I have cried after because I DID IT!!  

Beautiful Norland Road 
I'm enjoying life, I love training hard for a goal and I give it my all.  I am loving the time spent with my family and friends.  I'm really quite happy.  Part of that involves eating good food and drinking wine and celebrating with my family and friends.  My husband and I had a chat recently about weight and we both agreed.  We both work out really hard but we also really enjoy our wine and beer.  I know we could have "flatter, tighter" middles if we cleaned up our diet.  (note: we eat very healthy most of the time certainly that 80%) But we are happy and enjoying ourselves and don't want to change things.  We have made that decision.  So why oh why, did I step on the scale recently and and feel so utterly awful over a few pounds difference?  STUPID! 

I got mad at myself for feeling that way!  Just that week I had felt great about my body in my workout clothes, seeing my reflection in the gym mirror.  I have had some great accomplishments of recent in my training.  All that to say that a number on the scale almost crushed that! WHY? You would think I would have learned by now.  So I had a chat with myself.  What is important to me right now?  Training is important, meeting my race goals and enjoying and living my life with my family.  When my body is "less fluffily" and I am more focused on "clean eating" quite frankly I am grumpy, lack patience, much of my thoughts are focused on food.  I don't want that now.  So what if my middle is fluffy.  I'm ok with that.  So there it is, I need to to truly be ok with that and my choices and get back to feeling AWESOME! 

These peeps right here are what matter 
Speaking of awesome, this weekend I'm running my first Half Marathon of the year.  It's in Pelee Island and I am going on a road trip with 7 other girlfriends!!!!  Did I mention the race is being held by a winery???  So what's the plan?  HAVE FUN!  ENJOY myself!  I plan on running my best race that day what ever it may be, and then drinking a boat load of wine and celebrating with my friends.  Two of whom are running their FIRST HM's and two of whom have just run their first FULL marathons.  Plus there's a birthday in there too :)  So friendship, running, and wine :)  BRING IT ON!. 

So on that note I leave you with:

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

70km weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

I found this label in my cycle t-shirt getting dressed Sunday am

I'm still riding the high from Sunday's 70km ride for Cheo.  What an experience!  I am so so so glad that I didn't back out on this.  I had thought about backing out so many times and just riding the 70km on my own here at home.  I was so nervous about driving myself and my bike to the ride (sort of downtown), finding parking, riding in a group, basically all of the unknown new stuff.  I'm a creature of habit with anxiety and new things freak me out.  But I have great friends that talked me off the ledge and helped me come up with a plan.  Friday, my friend Melissa did a little ride with me and showed me lots of stuff about riding in a group.  It's amazing how every time I get on the bike I get so much more confident.  I actually got out of the Haven without getting off my bike to walk across the intersections (still refuse to turn left though lol).  Saturday I drove to the event site with the family and found parking options, which calmed my biggest anxiety.  I also had my friend Kelly meeting me at my house to drive together, so even we got lost or messed up I knew we would be laughing while doing it!

Sunday morning I woke up without any nerves, and was EXCITED to conquer 70KM!  So 70KM let me talk to you about that for a second.  When I signed up for this ride I had no idea how long it would take me to ride that.  I knew that I needed to ride 90km for the half iron in Aug so it seemed like a good idea to do this ride.  I had written up a little plan on my fridge, and on it I had written in a 2, 2.5 and 3 hr training rides.  I only ever biked 2hrs.  I think I was a little overzealous in thinking what I needed to do lol.  My longest training ride was in Norland (hilly) and I did 58km in about 2hrs.  I felt great on the ride (minus the giant hills) which made me feel much more confident about the 70km.  My biggest concern was the group of people and being around so many other riders and the fact that I can't drink or eat on the bike (I can barely wipe the snot from my nose!).  

So Kelly arrived bright an early at 6:30am and we were off with laughter!  Got close to the venue and OH CRAP ROAD CLOSURE!!! Why had I not thought of that and my GPS was in my other car! Cue Panic!  That's when Kelly saw the car in front of us with 2 bikes on the back and said FOLLOW! So the chase began, chase because they were driving so fast! 80 in a 50! I tried to keep up but wasn't going to get in accident doing so.  We lost them but made it and found parking on our own.

We met up with the rest of our awesome team! Muriel, Donna, Josee, Nadia, and Allyson :)  We walked our bikes to the start line and chose to hang back near the back to avoid the crush of people.  Next time I will go closer to the front so I don't have to fight the pack.  We waited a long time to start.  Did I mention it was raining and cold?  I know this was a charity event but standing there listening to "speeches" in the cold drizzle shaking, was really annoying (I'm a horrible person).

Muriel taking Team Selfies while we wait to start :) We look good! 
So the ride starts and it took me a bit to feel ok in the crowd of people, to find my "line".  After a bit, as I gained some confidence I started trying to work my way through the crowd.  I had lost sight of my friend Muriel and wanted to catch up.  My first OOPSIE came at a tight turn, I'm not used to that (this was like my 5-6th time on the bike).  The lady next to me yelled TURN!! I yelled back "sorry I'm a newbie, doing my best."  She was actually pretty nice.  I focused the first half of the ride on trying to catch up, I was pushing hard when I could and trying to get through the pods of people.  I was a mix of to scared to push through the crowds and then would get some balls and call "on your left!" and go!  I played back and forthsies with a few people too.  I missed two of the turns and had to unclip and turn around (go figure me taking a wrong turn lol).  Just over half way I started to worry about the fact that I hadn't had anything to drink yet.  I didn't want to stop, it wasn't hot out.  In fact it was cold and wet.  My feet were ice. But I knew I should at least take the gel or risk hitting a wall in the second half.  So I stopped, unclipped both feet and had a little to drink and a gel.  When I stopped I struggled getting my right foot clipped back in because I put my foot down in the wet mud and my clips were caked with mud.  So I tried to balance and clean it, and almost fell over.  Back on the bike and away I went.

The second part of the ride was my favourite.  I was past the crowds of people for the most part, and we were much more spaced out now.  There were long smooth stretches where my legs felt so fluid and strong.  Mentally I started to think holy crap I still have a long long way to go but I just focused on the bike and the ride and the time passed really quickly.  I had a little nervous moment where I got stuck in a pod of people on the right, I was used to being on the left.  Being a newbie, tired, and a little disoriented from the rain. I edged out to the left without checking a couple times only to quickly realize oh shit NO you can't do that.  I got out of the pod and was back on my own.  There were long moments were I felt totally isolated and on my own, and then for some reason would look back and there would be someone right behind me.  Totally unnerving I tell you.

The turn around was coming into sights, I once again missed the turn and had to unclip and right myself.   I headed back out and into the last stretch I think I had about 16km or something like that to go.  My butt was starting to hurt.  My lady parts were very very sore.  I saw my friend Josee on the turnaround and I yelled out "My ass is killing me!" I actually panicked a little and thought how am I going to make it back this is awful.  I shifted around a little and wouldn't you know the discomfort went away.  I felt good overall, other then my feet feeling ice!  I tried to wiggle my toes but it just made it worse, better for them to be numb.  I also started to get some nerve pain in my hands, I really need to get bike gloves.  I ride with my hands in the down bars as I feel more stable there, but it is a lot of pressure on my hands.  So I again shifted about and tried to get comfy. I was worried my hands would stop "working".  But everything was fine, especially when I rode up behind a lady and heard there were only 8km left.  8km I can do that!  5km I've got this. 2km almost there.  I have to admit the finish line was kind of anti climatic.  I just rode 70 freaking km!!! There was no crossing the Sportsstats Mat.  I got of the bike and was disoriented and cold.  Didn't really know what to do with my bike.  It was really just an odd cold all by myself feeling.  I smartened up though and went back to the car to change out of my soaking wet clothes and ditch my bike. I felt so good in my running shoes and warm sweater.  After that the happy endorphins started to flow, I found my friends and we began celebrating an amazing ride and everyones accomplishments.  Oh boy did we laugh hard celebrating, when out for lunch.

So longest ride to date, 70km and in 2:27! YAHOOOOO!!!