Friday, December 30, 2011

Hinckley's Gem

I have been staying at my parents in Ohio for the last couple of days and decided it was time to go for a run. I had two options: run on a 50mph road with no side lane or go up to Hinckley Reservation and run around the lake.

I am usually not one to drive somewhere to go run but it wasn't a hard choice and I jumped in my car and drove the whopping 4 miles up to the park. Hinckley Reservation has a nice paved running/bike path that goes all the way around the lake which makes for a very scenic run. When I was young I remember it taking forever in a day to walk around the lake, but in reality it is only a 3 mile loop.

I parked by the dam and made my way up the big hill. Actually the entire loop has lots of hills and you are never really running on a flat. The path was still a little icy and I had to slowly make my way over the ice in some places, but it wasn't too bad.

While I was running I got looped 3 times by a cyclist who was riding the loop on the road with an aero helmet on (tool). But he did make me jealous and I wished I was on my bike. It actually is a much better loop than haines point because there are so many hills and hills are exactly what I need.

I always enjoy running in a new place and it was quite refreshing to run somewhere that didn't have sidewalks and houses. Plus some small snowflakes were coming down which made the run even better. Once I made it around back to my car I tacked on an extra mile making my run a nice enjoyable 4 mile run.

While I was running I thought this would be the perfect spot for a tri with the lake for the swim and a challenging bike and run course. And what do you know? There is actually a Buzzard Day Duathlon held at the lake!!! I was so excited, but of course I have to coach at a meet the weekend it is being held so I can't make the trip home. I'm pretty disappointed about this because I would have loved to do a race in my home town and doing a race on Buzzard day would even be that much better!

Happy Friday all and enjoy your long weekends :)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Fitting in a Workout

When traveling to visit my family it always seems very hard to fit any workouts in because I would rather be visiting with them than working out. Because lets face it, I don't get to see my family very often and I always get to see my workouts.

But, on the other hand I don't want to skip swim, bike, or running all together while I'm in Ohio, so when I looked up what time the Brunswick Rec center opened I was trilled to find out that the pool opened for lap swim at 5am!

dark, cold, and snow but I made it here
This would be the perfect time for me to go swimming without my family even knowing I'm missing. I am jealous and I also wish that my pool would open this early so that I could swim before work.

Anyhow lap swim was from 5-7am and I set my alarm for 5:30am. It was dark out and I had to tear myself out of bed. I was thinking I could be there by 5:45, but little did I forget that I'm Ohio and there is snow on the ground and there was ice on my car. I haven't had to bust out my ice scratcher in I have no clue how long considering it doesn't really snow in DC and I never drive. I also learned that I am scared to drive in the snow after living in DC for almost 9 years and I drove like a grandma to the pool. I am not used to seeing icy parking lots and missed my nice easy 4 block pool commute.

hello ice and snow!
But the good thing was that the pool was not to far away and I made it there by 6.  There was a only a $5 dollar fee to enter. Such a good deal I think.

They only had 3 lap lanes open and I jumped in the last one and split the lane with another guy.

  He was done swimming after my 200 warm up, then I had the whole lane to myself! Score! I swam my little heart out and was expecting to get kicked out the pool per usual because the HS swim team was coming in at 7. But, I finished 2500 yards with 5 minutes to spare before I would have got booted. What good timing :)

When I left the pool it was still dark out and cold. Thank goodness for warm hats!

When I got back home everyone was still sleeping and I crawled back in bed like I was never missing. Swim done = mission accomplished.

How do you fit your workouts in when you are on travel?

Happy Wednesday All :)

Friday, December 23, 2011

5 Things Friday and Happy Holidays!

1. Right now I'm on the up in the air training plan and I don't know what I want to do next week? I will be traveling to Ohio on Tues. to go see my family and I know I will be packing my running shoes and my swim suit, but I'm not sure how often I will get either one in. But the plan is to run 3 times next week and swim at least 2 times. The pool I plan to swim at opens at 5am (yikes I have never swam this early) but I think it will be a good time to go because my family will not even know I'm gone since they will be all warm still in their beds. Jealous.
2. I talked to my sister and said I might also bring my bike and bike trainer home and she laughed at me and thought it was a ridiculous idea. She had a better idea and said that if I'm going to the rec center to swim, that I can just spin on a bike there. Very true, but I still want kindof want to bring my bike even though I have barely been using my trainer. As of matter of fact, I need to come up with some good trainer workouts so I don't die of boredom on the thing. At the very least I am somewhat getting used to riding in the aero position even though I know it won't be so easy to ride outside.
3. I can't wait to eat some Christmas cookies! I actually have not eaten any yet this holiday season which is so sad.
4. I wanted to make up the 12 days of a tri - mas. I thought it would be so cute, however I'm not very creative and couldn't come up with anything witty.
5. Why I am at work today? I want my break to begin now :) 
Happy Holidays Everyone :) I hope you have a great one!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


So, yesterday I didn't feel like doing anything and instead ate some popcorn, pizza, and pop and hung out with Kiwi on the couch all night :)


Happy Wednesday All :)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Lunch Time

Most of the time I work through my lunch time eating at my desk and answering calls with my mouth full of food. Yesterday was crazy busy at my office and I just needed a break and wanted to step away from my desk. So, when Carly tweeted she was going for a lunch run, I jumped at the chance to meet her. I usually like to run once or twice a week during my lunch break, but being able to run with a friend is even better.
We met at 14th and Madison which is about 1.2 miles from my office then we did a nice little loop down to the Capitol and back. I always forget how nice it is to run with someone else as I usually do most of my running by myself. I did not wear a watch on this run and just used map my run to find out that I ran just around 5 miles.  
It was really refreshing to get outside while the sun was shining and get my miles in for the day without really taking time out of my day. For those of you who are wondering... I do not shower after my lunch runs. I simply just splash my face off and change back into my dress clothes a little sweaty and with a red face. I think my co-workers are used to me not looking so great.
Once the new year starts, I think I will mainly start using my lunch time to get in some core and strength training at least 2 x a week. My office has three buildings on the same block with one of them having a gym on the top floor. This will be the perfect time to get in my strength sessions once IM training begins. Why I don't do this now? I guess I have just have been lazy.
How do you spend your lunch break?
Happy Tuesday All  :)

Monday, December 19, 2011

7 Day Swim Challenge

I have been having a really hard getting myself to the pool lately ....

So, I set up a little challenge for myself to help get my booty to the pool. The challenge: swim 7 days in a row! It didn't matter what distance I swam, as long as I got in the water for the day. I was excited to get myself in the water the first day, but some of the days after that, I basically had to force myself to go. I could have easily just skipped a day because honestly who would know? The answer is: no one would know expect me. And I wasn't about to let myself down.

The 7 days went as follows:

12/11 ~ 2200 yards
* 400 warm up then 100-200-300-400-300-200-100 with a 200 cool down
* This was also my first time at Eastern Market pool on a Sunday and it wasn't  very crowded which is good to know

12/12 ~ 1650 meters
* swam this one straight as I only have a half hour in the pool after coaching since Fairland decided it would be a good idea to close their pool at 9 now. I got kicked out of the pool as usual.

12/13 ~ 2400 yards
* 200 warm up with 100-200-400-600-400-200-100 and 200 cool down
* My left shoulder issue started acting up again and my whole arm was numb making this swim a really beast to get through.

12/14 ~ 3000 yards
* 400 warm up then 1 x 1000, 4 x 200, 4 x 100 with a 400 cool down
* This is my longest swim to date :) It also helps that I wasn't held back by the usual pool closing time restrictions I always have to deal with.

12/15 ~ 1600 meters
* back to swimming after coaching so I had to swim this one straight again

12/16 ~ 2400 yards
* 400 w/u then 2 x 500, 5 x 200
* I felt really good during this swim despite not wanting to drag my ass to the pool on a Friday.

12/17 ~ 2200 yards
* 2 x 200, 1 x 1000, 4 x 200
* I actually thought about something else other than trying to remember what lap I was on. This in itself is amazing!

After Saturday's swim session I realized setting up a challenge and having a goal in mind really helped motivate me. With being the off season and no races to be training for this month, having this small little goal/challenge really gave a little bit more of a purpose to my sessions. I also realized that I have no clue what swim workouts should be or are suppose to be. I still label myself as a new swimming and I really have no clue what I'm doing.

Have you ever set yourself up a challenge? Did you stick with it ?

Happy Monday All :)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Year in Race Review

Jan: No Races — Boo!  But this was the first time I had been in the pool since taking swimming lessons when I was 7!

Feb: Yep still no races — more boo! And I can finally make it more than one pool length without dying!

1. National Half Marathon - I was hoping for a PR and had trained really good for this race. Unfortunally I tripped over a side walk running and strained something in my knee. I didn't run for a week before the race and had tears running doing my face for most of the run! I managed to finish in 1:53 which I guess isn't bad with all things considering.
OH and I can actually swim a mile!

2. Cherry Blossom 10 miler - that I had to downgrade to a 5k. My knee was still hurting and I didn't want to waste my money, plus this race is hard to get into. I walk it and made a new friends along the way.

3. My first cycling anything event... the Six Pillars Century (I did the 56 mile course). It was so much fun, but umm...yeah I realized I need some clip shoes. Riding 56 miles with tennis shoes on made me look like a dork.

4. Dead Man's 5k - I was excited about racing a 5k because I never have before and I wanted to see how fast I could go. I was disappointed though because there was no timing chips at the race and I didn't start at the front. I was the 8th women to cross the finish line, but who really knew what place you were officially in without timing chips? Unfair!

Also my first open water swim clinic: I thought I was going to die! I'm never swimming in the Chesapeake bay again! I literally almost died!  

5. Splash N' Dash - a fun little race with a 300 meters swim and a 5k run. Just what I needed before my first tri!

6. DC Tri (Sprint) - My first tri .. EVER!!! I was so excited and nervous at the same time! I was way over trained and should have done the oly distance, but same different I guess... I had the best time ever!!! I am officially hooked on tris!!!

July: No races because I went on the best vacation ever.... a Baltic see cruise! I got to see so many cool places and it was a nice break from training even though I felt sluggish when I got back two weeks later.

7. Du the 2 dualton - another first for me! run 2, bike 26, run 4 ... what is there not to love? Oh I can tell you... racing in August! It was hot as hell and I was over heating again! I need to try to remember this before I go and do anything stupid and register for another race in August....

8. North East Tri (Oly Distance) - There was a major storm and all the distances got cut down except for the run. It was a wet and miserable race, but dare I say it was fun?

9. Nations Tri (OLY) - Something is against me and doesn't want me to do an oly distance! It rained cats and dogs for a week before the race and the swim was canceled! The bike course was crowded and the run was hot. I had the best support team though!

10. Back Roads Century - I was a wimp and only did the 50 mile loop. What is wrong with me? I regret this! I should have rode 100 miles.

11. San Jose RNR Half Marathon - this is the first time I have really traveled for a race, but it was a great excuse to visit and run with one of my best friends. I thought I was going to PR at this race, but I had back/hip problems going into it and took two weeks off from running. This was my first big mistake amoung many smaller mistakes. I still have a blast though!

12. Waterman's HIM Relay - Yet again another first :) Doing a relay was so much fun, although I felt bad running past the other people during the half marathon. They looked so tired when my legs were nice and fresh. I ended up PRing even though I wasn't trying too :)

 13. Baltimore Half Marathon - the last of my string of halfs! And the best part was I was running it with my one and only! Best Race Ever! Someone tell Jason he needs to run more races with me :)

14. Freedom Half marathon - I was suppose to run the Philly Half, but went to a family bday instead. And guess what?!?! This half marathon was so kind to me and I finally got my sub 1:50!!! Actually I had a big PR with a time of 1:44 ... I was so happy!

15. Some 5k Turkey Trot - A fun little turkey trot that I ran with Jason and it gave us a chance to show off our turkey hats :)

16. The hot chcolcate 15k - Well, obviously this was the best ran race ever...NOT!!! Although I still had fun hanging out with Victoria and talking about our great idea for 2012.

Overall I had so much fun racing this year with lots of first time races!! And I can't wait for my 2012 season to begin. IM Louisville.. you are so mine :)

Did you have fun racing this year? What are you your A races for next year?

Happy Thursday All :)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas Spirit

When I moved from Dupont to Capitol Hill two years ago I was a little nervous to leave my beloved Dupont and there may or may not have been some tears. However, I did not realized what a great block we had moved too!!  Everyone is friendly toward each other and we actually know each other. It feels more like a small town than Washington DC. We take turns hosting a happy hour once month, we have block parties, and chili cook-offs and it is no wonder that we were voted the friendliest block on the hill, and last week was no different.

It is tradition that we have a lighting of the Christmas tree ceremony. At first I thought this may be a little cheesy, but it isn't. We all come out and help decorated the giant x-mas tree that is placed in one of our neighbors front yard. It is a great way to bring us all together to do something fun and exciting and the kids really seemed to love it. Plus, there is always plenty of food and drinks to keep everyone happy in the cold.

 The finished result is so pretty and it makes me happy that I was able to take part in something like this.

Lots of yummy food:

And of course I had a beer to help keep me warm...although hot apple cider may have been a better choice..

Now I think the tree looks wonderful and in a small attempt to bring some x-mas cheer to my own house, I put up some lights up about a week or so ago. They are kind of sad looking in comparison to others, but something is better than nothing :) Plus I put a cute reindeer in my yard.

Now, the only thing that is missing from our block is Walter St group runs! Maybe I need to get on that and see how many people I could get to come out at run...
Do you decorate for x-mas?
Happy Wednesday All :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Displaying Medals/Bibs

When I was young I displayed all my trophies and medals I won from gymnastics in my room. Ok, I had them out when I was in highschool as well. It wasn't until college that I took all my trophies down and boxed them up and put them in my closet.

So one would think when it comes to running and triathlons that I would love to display my accomplishments with my medals, but I don't. When I get home from a race I basically through the medal wherever. It might up under the bed, it may end up in my laundry room, or I at the bottom of a closet. Needless to say they are not displayed and I don't even kept them all in once place and for sure have lost most of them. I'm not sure why I don't care about the medals? I don't know if it's because I had medals displayed when I was younger or if crossing the finish line is enough for me.

Either way, if you happen to be someone who loves the race medals and loves to display them, I think that's great!!! You should be proud of yourself :) Plus there is a lot of cool medal displays out there.

In an effort to actually do something with the stuff I get from races, I started (about two months ago) to save my race bibs.  I write the date and my time on the back of each, then bring them into work and put them on my cube wall. This is just incase my co-workers wonder why I always come in wearing spandex and look like crap most of the time....

Anyhow, I wish I had kept all of my bibs from my races so my wall could be filled, but it'll get there I'm sure.

Do you display your medals or bib numbers? Or do they get tossed into a box?

Happy Tues All :)

Monday, December 12, 2011

A weekend filled with Tri-ing...kindof...

What is as exciting as swimming, biking, or running? Spending an entire weeked filled with swim, bike, run, conversations and get togethers!!! 

I love Lauriol Plaza. It's one of my favorite restaurants in the city and they have really good chips/salsa and margaritas!

So, I couldn't think of a better place to go on a Friday night to spent time with some of my favorite other triathletes and help Lauren celebrate her recent ironman finish!!! Now I have a great time working out with these ladies, but having margaritas can be proven to be just as much fun :) There was lots of laughs and chocolate floating around the table after dinner. I had a blast.

Emily, Lauren, Victoria, and Allison:

 Steph and Erin:

Carly, Me, Rachael, and Sarah (my tri twin)

Saturday rolled around and I was one my way to the DC Tri Clubs annual meeting and Kona viewing party! You didn't have to twist my arm to go... all I heard was swag at the door, the possibility of winning zip wheels, and watching Kona....and I was there in a blink of an eye. This year it was being held at the Arlington Rooftop bar and grill. I have never been there before (ok I haven't been to a lot of places in VA). The DC area is filled with triathlon lovers and this was a sold out event with 300 attendees!
but who doesn't love to tri?
It was a great chance to finally meet up with some dailymile friends and twitter friends who I have never met before (in person) and be able to put some faces with the names of people who I chit chat with. I would have loved to walk around more and meet new people, but unfortunately my social skills this day were about a 4 on a scale of 1-10 because I may or may not have been hungover from the night before....

In the end I found a nice comfy table (ok Steph found) and I sat there the rest of the evening. They had lots of great food and it was fun hanging out with Steph and Kristine. We also had all the bike porn magazines one could as for at our table.

Once Kona came on, the club started the pize drawings!!! It was really cute how these did this: When we signed in they gave us bib numbers and took the bottom part of the bib for the drawing. I loved this idea.

Come on lucky number 84!!!
I crossed my fingers that I would win the zip wheels, then I crossed my fingers that I would win a trainer, or a wetsuit. But in the guessed it... I won nothing!!! But I guess I did win spending time with friends :)

I had also dvr-ed  Kona, just in case it would be to hard to watch at the party, so when I got home I dove right into watching the world championships! And they did not disappoint, I had tears rolling down my cheeks...

Sunday was sad, I did not hang out with any triathletes, but I did get to coach at my gymnasts first gymnastics meet of the season!!! They did great!!

How did you spend your weekend? I hope everyone had a great one!

Happy Monday All :)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Friday Random Facts

1. It doesn't feel like x-mas to me this year which is sad
2. I have been a slacker this week, hopefully I can make up for it over the weekend
3. I have only bought two people's x-mas presents
4. I wish I was not such a messy person because I can never find anything
5. I don't like milk, but need to start drinking it
6. I don't like my food to touch other food on my plate
7. I go to the bathroom like 10 times before going on a road trip. I am so scared that I'm going to have to go as soon as I get in the car
8. I haven't rode my new tri bike outside yet .. it is so sad :(
9. I need more bike shorts
10. White Russians used to be one of my favorite drinks, now I love lemon drop martinis
11. I have never used my fireplace in the two years I have lived at my house
12. I want some peppermint bark #yum
13. I used to cry or throw presents I didn't like when I was young .. what a brat!
14. I am the meanest in the world if I am lost while driving
15. I never thought I would live in a city, but I love DC so much!
16. Jason organized a software engineers night out ... what a bunch of nerds :)  
17. I was so excited when they came out with flat screen monitors!
18. I want a kitten for x-mas with a cute red bow on him
19. My teams first gymnastics meet is on this Sunday! Go Fairland!
20. I am excited for tonight :)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

3 Things Thurs - more IM stuff

1. I usually tag along with M to his swim lessons on Wednesdays, but yesterday I just couldn't make myself. I looked out the window and it was still raining and my couch was feeling so comfy. I thought to myself that I miswell take advantage of not having to train for anything right now and allowed myself to skip it. I hate being home by myself and thought I might be bored, but instead spent the hour watching more IM videos. When M got back home he walked into my watching a video of the Louisville bike course that someone had tapped. He simply said: "What a dork." And I guess I am a dork for watching a video of someone filming a road out their car window and finding it entertaining and helpful. I still have not made up my mind if I'm more scared about Louisville or Mooseman. 
2. I heard a knock on my door while I was busy doing my field research and ignored it thinking it was people selling firewood again. When M got home he brought up two Ironman books that I had ordered. I love these books already and reading one of them filled up the rest of my evening. I really think Ironman - Start to Finish: is going to be a very helpful book.
It has what seems to be a very good 24 week training program. I have not had a chance to look at the other book I ordered, but it is filled with several different training plans. I would love to use a coach, but they are pricey and well enough said on that. I think my best course of action at this point is to combine a training program for a HIM with the 24 week IM training plan from this book. I would pick up the IM training plan at week 10, two weeks before my 70.3 which seems to work out perfect. I have never been one to do spread sheets and use different colors, but I am now and it looks so pretty. And of course I will use all my wonderful friends who know what they are doing to help me :)
3. After looking at what is in store for me starting the week of Jan 16th, I am taking it easy for the rest of this month and the beginning of Jan. I know I better enjoy my off time while I can.
Happy Thurs All :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Hot Chocolate Race Pics

So the Hot Chocolate 15k may be known in the runners world as a Epic Fail, but somehow by running in a swiss miss costume I still had fun :)

Hi.. I'm almost finished

And I have no clue what I'm looking at?

playing to the crowd

Darn, I just let that guy pass me...

Amost to the finish

And I'm done with the worst.race.ever
 Happy Wednesday All :)