A new Revolution!

I did it!

I just registered for the inaugural Rev3 Half in Knoxville, Tennessee. I haven’t been to Knoxville since my senior year of high school (that’s 9 years ago! Holy cripes). My neighbors growing up in the small town or Erie, Michigan, moved there when I was in elementary school, and my senior spring break was spent in the Smoky Mountains. I loved it there so much that I even considered going to college at the University of Tennessee (Go Vols!). It will be nice to get back.

I also bit the bullet and signed up for the Rev3 Full at Cedar Point. This will be my second iron-distance triathlon, and I am geeked. Oddly enough, I don’t feel nervous, and I know I can do it. Now I just want to race it, fast! What’s super awesome about Rev3 Cedar Point is the venue. And the location is awesome, right on Sandusky Bay in Lake Erie. And the races themselves. Ok, everything is pretty much super awesome. It’s a whole 90min from my parents house (score!), has the world’s best rollercoasters (it IS the rollercoaster capitol of the world after all), and Rev3 is offering full and half iron distance races. Ohmygosh this is going to be awesome! My entire family can come to the race and they don’t even have to be bored waiting for me to bike by. Chances are, they’ll be in line at the Millenium Force when I am crossing the finish line… oh well! I wonder if they can save my spot… (surely cutting in line will be allowed for racers, yeah?).

I’m pretty sure I’ll be at the Rev3 Quassy, too. I haven’t registered yet… but I am working out logistics on flying into Newark, renting a car, and driving up with my friend from Brooklyn. Girls weekend!?  Quassy is two weekends out from the American Triple T, but I’m hoping my body can handle the onslaught of pain that is long course racing.

Want to join me? Register for any (or all!) of these awesome races and get $10 off (each one!) using my code: trakkers118 … Let’s race!

Big Week #1 Recap

This past week was my first of two big weeks before I start a progressive tapering for Ironman Wisconsin. What started out with a post-race rest day ended with a beautiful long run in Madison, Wisconsin.

Going into the training week, I was feeling good but somewhat hesitant as I wasn’t sure how my body would respond to both higher intensity and volume. Luckily, every day I rebounded, only felt marginally run down, and I pulled it all together. I guess that’s what good nutrition, rest, and recovery does!

On Tuesday, I put in a few thousand yards in the pool to work on speed and form. In the evening, I railed on my Jamis Dragon mountain bike for 3.5+ hours. I definitely bonked toward the end of the ride, and unfortunately still had a good distance to get back home and recoup. Sure, I ended up walking my bike up some of the hills in Maasto Hiito. That’s totally acceptable. Especially since my bike is a hard tail, my legs were toast, and I probably would have fallen off my bike had I tried to climb the switchbacks. After three hours, I can do whatever I want!

Wednesday was a recovery day. I went for a quick swim to work on technique with Erik H. in the morning, and in the afternoon squeezed in a 7mile run. Adam and I went to dinner with some friends at the Fitz (Eagle River Inn), my old stomping ground. Follow that with some hand-dipped ice cream and a visit to Caleb’s cabin on Lake Superior, and I’d say it was a well respected recovery day, indeed.

On Thursday, I focused on my one high-intensity workout of the week: 7miles at lactate threshold, 12miles total. Erik and Adam joined me on the Canal for some killer mile repeats. After a 2.5mile warmup, I averaged miles at: 6:58, 6:55, 6:51, 6:43, 6:32, 6:33, 6:27. Not too shabby, especially since I was able to continuously improve my splits. I allowed for ample recovery, too- with around 50% recovery time after each mile. In the past, I had done some 4 and 5 mile LT workouts in one stretch, but I always went out too fast and couldn’t hang on at the end. I hope that I am able to get more out of these workouts by breaking them up and running negative splits. I didn’t feel completely wiped when I was done with #7 either, which is usually a good sign. Now, if only I could run a half marathon at 6:40s… That would be the cat’s pajamas. We followed the repeats up with a swim in the Portage. No better way to cool off, I suppose! After swimming for a few hundred yards, I decided to float around for a bit and wait for the guys to head back toward the beach. We then headed to Andrew J’s for the 250F sauna and barbecue, and it didn’t take long for me to be ready for some sleep. I felt absolutely great afterwards, and never developed delayed onset muscle soreness. What a great effort.

Friday was a travel day for me, and I wasn’t able to get in a workout. Bummer! I had planned a five-mile recovery run, though, so I wasn’t missing too much volume-wise. I drove to Madison, Wisconsin, to visit some friends and join the TriWisconsin club for a course preview. Friday night, Jess, her friend Jamie, and I went to LaBrioche- a delicious and eclectic restaurant about a mile from her apartment. It was the final day of Madison’s Restaurant Week. Perfect timing! We had a very luxurious three-course meal for $25. I had the grapefruit and avo spinach salad, skirt steak, and gelato. Jess ordered Mahi Mahi with coconut bisque and chocolate cake (her first fish in how many years?!), and Jamie also dove into the skirt steak (but went with the chevre puff and arugula salad and cobbler).

Saturday morning, I headed to Olin Turville Park to meet Gigi and the TriWisconsin club for a IMoo preview ride. Gigi directed me to some people she thought I could ride with, and I got to see her at the 30, 60, and 90mile aid stations. Unfortunately for her, she broke her elbow and collarbone five weeks ago in a bike crash. Crossing fingers, she meets with the doc tomorrow to find out if she can start running and maybe even compete in September, too. She’s one tough chick! I ended up starting out with a woman, Ann, who I hung with the whole time.

The ride started out with a nice, refreshing (?) rain. I hadn’t ridden much in the rain before, so I was a little apprehensive. Luckily, it didn’t take long to clear up. We headed out along “the stick” to Verona, where we hopped on “the loop” and hammered our way up the hills. I definitely was a little too ambitious on the first lap, and felt it at the second aid station. Luckily, Gigi brought peanut M&Ms! Savior.

Lots of rollers along the course

I am definitely glad I previewed the course. It was challenging, technical, and some of the roads are in a little rough shape. Notes for the future: No matter what, never EVER go out for a long ride without chamois cream. That was not good.

Ann made for a great training partner!

The course was hilly, but the first loop definitely felt more tough than the second. I need to remember to race my own race at IM, not get caught up in what other racers are doing. I can do it. I am learning as I go through this whole process that I am a strong biker, and a smart racer. I have one more BIG WEEK of training ahead of me, and then I start spending more time focusing and fine-tuning.
Big smiles at the top…

On Sunday, Jess let me tag along on her weekend long run with the Run Club of UW. I got to meet Tien Tien, who will be joining me and Jess for the Ragnar Relay (Great River) in a few weeks. She’s one speedster! I was a little sore and tired at the beginning of the run, but was feeling good (but definitely ready to stop!) but the end of the 15miles. To think, I need to run a marathon after the bike ride?!? Perhaps I should start visualizing now…

Total for the week: 19hours of training

My goal for Big Week #2 is going to be around 22hours. I’m feeling a little sore, but hopefully today’s rest will help me recover. Ah, I LOVE rest days…


Last weekend (wow, its been a week already?!) was the Noquemanon in Marquette. There are many different races. Travis (my roommate) did the classic marathon, as did several Tech alum skiers (Karl W, Dave S, Mik K, Adam A). My boyfriend did the half marathon skate (25K), and I started before him in the 25K classic. It was my first ski race in several years, and I feel like I’ve become a much better skier than when I was thrown into the sport my senior year of college 🙂 Anyway, my time wasn’t phenomenal, but the conditions were slow (it was about 10F when I finished). I won my age group and finished 6th overall for women, and it really got me itchin’ to do a full marathon. Maybe I can classic the Birkie?

I’ve also started my marathon training for Lincoln in May. I’m both excited and nervous about it, because after my first scheduled intensity training day (R intervals on the indoor track), I was sore and … well, sore! I’m hoping its because I did them on the indoor track, didn’t change directions, and haven’t ran hard not-on-a-treadmill in a while. I am excited, though, because I will get to see my old roomie from Bozeman and catch up, as well as tick off Nebraska from my 48 remaining states. I am also hoping that a few of my friends will be able to make it to Nebraska with me… another running reunion perhaps? And of course… I hope for a PR. The course doesn’t appear nearly as demanding as Whidbey was, and with a little experience under my belt, maybe I can break 3:20. My training schedule seems to work out perfectly; after Lincoln, I will have about a week of recovery, and then back into training for Ironman (right on track with the Daniel’s marathon plan). I still plan on training for the marathon throughout Ironman training, but will use my easy days for other things like cycling, swimming, etc. And, of course, I won’t be putting back-to-back high intensity days together. I am excited to see how I can work out hard swimming, cycling, and running workouts in a week’s worth of graduate researcher’s free time.