Well… I didn’t really meet the 2012 goals I set out in last year’s non-New Year’s resolution post, partly due to work/life factors, and partly because I didn’t follow my own advice of setting small, weekly goals for yourself as you work towards your larger goals.
I didn’t end up competing in any triathlons in 2012 because I was crazy busy organizing the majority of the triathlons I probably would have participated in. I did get back in the pool for a little bit, but was sick of everything triathlon by the end of summer and lost my passion for it slightly. I didn’t do a marathon in 2012 so I didn’t get my sub 4-hour PB, but I did manage a super fast half marathon time, beating my previous best by five minutes. With all things considered, I still had a great 2012 fitness-wise. And I know 2013 is going to be even better. (more…)
On a Mill Hill trail run with running buddy Debbie… clearly out of shape.
First of all, apologies for not blogging about what it’s like to work “behind the scenes” of an endurance event. To be honest, I was just so incredibly busy. I barely had time to run, let alone blog. I also didn’t have any training updates for you, as I wasn’t really training or racing. I managed to do a bit of trail running here and there, but no swimming or biking 🙁
But enough with the excuses. After a summer being the communications coordinator for four triathlons, I have a new appreciation for everything that goes into running safe and fun events. In about a year I went from being a total tri newb (what the hell is a bike bib?? How do I transition??) to knowing every little detail about the event, down to how many tins of Gatorade we’d need to prepare at each aid station on the course to provide for 800 competitors. (more…)
Me in Maui after finishing the Maui Oceanfront Half Marathon. Has nothing really to do with this post. I just thought it’d be more interesting than a stock photo of ‘Happy New Year’ text with squiggles and sparkles.
I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions. Mainly because I’m always thinking about, planning and refining my goals — personal, fitness and otherwise — throughout the year. But January 1st is a good time to reflect on the highs and lows of the previous year and how they changed you, as well as look forward to and plan what you want to achieve in the year to come.
And by planning what you want to achieve, I don’t mean the lose-30-pounds-and-make-time-to-read-more-books type of plan (otherwise known as the ‘New Year’s Resolution’) — I mean actually writing down your goals, and considering what it is you actually need to do to reach them.
For me, I knew 2011 was going to be the year I completed my first triathlon. Not only did I have no idea what I was doing or where to even start, but also I didn’t even know how to swim. With my target goal in sight (meaning I signed up for the triathlon before I even had a bike or knew how to swim), I wrote down all of the steps I needed to take in order to get there — the first being to get a good triathlon coach, which helped take all the guesswork out of the rest of the steps! (more…)
Only in Metchosin would you get a second-place squash
So I meant be more consistent with my blog posts throughout August and September, but it was hard to find time to blog in between road trips to the Okanagan, camping, barbeques, and other more social activities that kept me outside and away from the computer.
Now that the typical west coast weather has returned to the island (sad face), I’ll probably get back to blogging weekly.
Since my first triathlon at the end of July, I’ve completed a few more races and blog-worthy runs and events, including another triathlon (a sprint distance at the Sooke International Triathlon during the first week of August), a local 5km race (where I came second in my age group and won a squash), and two epic trail runs with Hagen (one that I ran without proper trail shoes, also hungover from a wedding the night before; and one where I learned gels made of 100% agave do not agree with me), and a BC Cancer fundraiser initiative called “Van Isle Runners for Cancer”, which consisted of a calendar photoshoot (where I confirmed the fact that I take bad action shots; every race photo of me is horrible. I wouldn’t be surprised if they decide not to use my photos — Runner’s World cover model I am not). (more…)
“Looking good! Less than a kilometre to the finish line!” shouted a runner passing by me going the opposite way.
A year ago today, that other runner was me, cheering on the last of the Self Transcendence triathlon participants finishing up the run portion around Elk Lake.
I was out for a long run at Elk Lake, my 2010 summer Sunday ritual as I geared up for my first full marathon that fall, when I decided I would do this very same race next year. I was inspired by those triathletes, and thought the event looked like fun. So what if I couldn’t swim? I have a year to train. I can do this.
One year later, there I was, finishing up the last few kilometres of the 10 km run portion of an Olympic triathlon, with other runners cheering me on.
I haven’t heard anything yet about what will happen… whether the organizers will move the swim portion to a different beach at Elk Lake, or? If anybody knows, please comment!
At least there are a few other triathlons I can do before the season ends. I think I’ll sign up for the sprint distance at the Subaru Sooke International Triathlon on August 7th, regardless. After all this training, I feel like I should do at least two this summer before marathon training starts! (more…)
My tri group had our first race simulation of the season this morning out at Thetis Lake, where we got to practice our swim-to-bike and bike-to-run transitions, as well as doing all three sports back-to-back.
The day before, however, I decided to see what my legs felt like on the run after a 35 km ride (the Olympic triathlon bike distance is 40 km).
I had a great ride out to Sooke, despite getting a bee in my helmet. (more…)
Discovered a new hangover cure this morning: open water swimming.
After a late night at a friend’s wedding (too much wine and dancing in heels… ouch my calves this morning), I surprised myself by making it to my tri group’s first open water swim session on time.
The last thing I wanted to do was stuff myself into a wetsuit and jump in a lake.
Getting the wetsuit on was a bit easier this time, though. Noa gave me a few pointers, such as to use BodyGlide around the parts your suit gets stuck, like your wrists, ankles, behind the knees, etc., and to cut off any extra suit length near your feet and hands if it’s too long.
While the majority of the group did laps around the small islands in the middle of Thetis Lake, I stuck near the shore with a few others and practiced swimming out and counting strokes, and running in and out of the water.
By the end of the swim I wasn’t feeling the effects of last night at all — in fact, I felt great! I felt I could have kept going, but we still had a run to do.
My Achilles was bugging me during the slow but hilly hour-long trail run around Thetis with the group — I’ve never had pain or tightness there before, but I have a feeling it may have been caused by me trying to do the LMFAO shuffle dance last night on the dancefloor at the wedding in heels… not from running 🙂
Oh! I also got my tri team cycling kit (cycling kit = a bike bib and jersey with my tri group logo on it) AND bought some new kicks!
Officially one of those spandexed riders I used to make fun of on the Goose. Woo hoo!
I’ve been running in Mizuno Wave Inspires for about 6 months, and they’ve been great. I tried on the same shoe in the newer version and wasn’t really in love with them. Not sure what they changed… but they definitely weren’t as comfy. I think they are a bit higher around the ankle than last year’s model.
It was a toss-up between Saucony ProGrid Guide 4 (which had a bit of a higher heel to make you run more on your forefoot) and the Saucony ProGrid Hurricane. The Hurricane felt most like my current shoe, so I decided to play it safe and get them instead of the Guides.
Saucony ProGrid Hurricanes. Will now run at a hurricane-force pace!
(I actually don’t need new shoes right now, but I got a gift card as a grad present… it was burning a hole in my purse.)
Oh, and I also bought some swimming goodies.
BodyGlide, new goggles, a new swim cap in white and chocolate & espresso gels for fuel.
I’m still on the hunt for a new swim suit and a tri suit… and hopefully that will be it for triathlon gear spending for this season.
(How many times have a said that in one of these posts? Still hoping…)
I am finally in possession of the last expensive piece of triathlon gear I need: the wetsuit.
(Huge thanks to Dave at Pen Run in downtown Victoria for hooking me up with a sweet deal on a brand new wetsuit, just in time for my first open water swimming session!)
Since most of my tri training group were racing today at the Subaru Victoria Triathlon (congrats to Adam and Leif by the way — first and second place overall! Amazing!) and I couldn’t get a ride out to Elk Lake to watch, I walked down to Langford Lake to test out the new wetsuit and go for a swim.
I struggled to get into the suit for about half an hour. You have to be careful not to puncture the rubber with your nails; even with gloves on AND cut nails I think I still managed to put holes in it. I managed to get it a bit further on than I did with the help of Dave in the store, so I’m hoping next time I’ll be able to have it fitting properly. Getting your legs in is definitely the trickiest part — after it’s pulled up to a certain point you just pull your arms in, put your shoulder blades together and have someone zip you up, then you can kind of wiggle yourself in more by putting your arms over your head and bending at the hips, and doing high steps and squats.
Once I got in the water it was awesome. I was nice and warm, and the wetsuit makes you super buoyant. The hardest part for me once I started swimming was trying to blow bubbles in cold water (the cold temperature makes it harder to breathe at first) and being freaked out by seeing a dark, murky abyss instead of the bottom of a pool. I had to stop and pop my head up often to make sure I wasn’t swimming off into the weeds and that I could still see the shore. I think next time when I’m with a group and not alone in the water I’ll feel more comfortable.
But yay! My first open water swim! All that’s left of unchartered tri territory now is the transition.