Monday, May 31, 2010

A Terrible Run

I went out for my required 3 mile run yesterday.  It was amongst the worst runs I've ever had.  Well, we'll call this one an "energetic shuffle with periods of walking".  I'm being generous.

M thinks that maybe I didn't fuel properly- I hadn't been too hungry so I didn't eat lunch, and it was after church, so I had my smoothie in the morning followed by a piece of angel food cake, a few pieces of cheese, and a piece of olive-oil-dipped bread.   And no lunch. This might have been the problem. I still didn't FEEL hungry, though.  And you shouldn't eat when you aren't hungry, right?  I'm so confused!

I could barely get going in the first place.  After I pushed myself to start the energetic shuffle that I call a run, I found I could sometimes maintain it for a song or two before slowing back into a walk.  By 15 minutes into the run, I found myself fantasizing about tempeh and how I would cook it when I got home.  The weirdest part is that I still DIDN'T FEEL HUNGRY... I just wanted that tempeh and some nice veggies with the single-minded desire of a labrador in pursuit of bacon.

I got home throughly depressed at my uber lack of athletic prowess or capability.  Next time, maybe.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Validation and Swimming

So, today, I had a situation where the only thing I could do was validate the person's parking garage ticket. I went to Officer Joe, one of my favorite officers.  He's a mellow guy who's seen enough in the world that he has nothing to prove and nothing to gain, so he can walk the halls spreading calm and being polite.  Well, polite, and a side of Mighty Muscle, which helps when I need backup.  He's my mellow linebacker.  I asked him if he'd mind validating the parking ticket.

He takes the ticket, and says, "You are a very fine parking ticket.  You are very yellow, and you have the time stamped on you".  That just cracked me up.  Officer Joe doesn't usually validate the very existence of my tickets, so I am taking this one at face value.  Validation rocks. 

After I got home, I had my usual shift at Ten Thousand Villages, where I am currently in love with the new items like snack-size tiffins (which I don't *think* I'll buy because I already have bentos and a tiffin...) and the upcycled items like the folio made out of VHS tape.  It's completely awesome.  You'll see.  And there's these cute little frog toys.  And I can't wait for us to get the paper doll kit- it's a set of wooden tracing pieces to trace doll parts and clothes that you can then decorate and cut out in any style you choose.  How awesome is that?  (Too awesome for words, really). 

And then it was off to swimming practice.  Because I can't do math to save my life, I thought I had to do 1,750 yards, and figured out that was 15 fifty foot laps. When I got home, I realized that I only had to swim 750 yards, and that the pool is measured in yards, not feet.  I did fifteen up-and-down lengths, and got up to three continuous lengths at a time before I had to stop and do the breathing exercise to get my breath back.  But I think the technique is becoming more natural.  A few more workouts for technique and I might be able to start swimming for speed!  All in all, I'm pretty sure I swam about 750 yards, since I lost count a few times and decided to redo laps 10 and 12 to make sure I had gotten them in. 

Tomorrow is a bike candy day, but I'm working 8:30 to 8:30.  I'm not sure I'll be awake to do an early morning ride, although in Arlington, during the smoggy summer, I did used to get up at 530 or 6 to ride.  (Down the bike path, with wildflowers and serenity on all sides...).  I may take tomorrow as my "day off" and do my bike ride on Memorial Day.  I will also be inflicting a crunchy granola salad upon my family at the picnic, and bringing my ice-cream-ball to make ice cream.  It should be fun. 

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A 30 Min. Run

I'm not the only person raising money for cancer research!  Ben is my "honored teammate", meaning he's the one fighting the REAL battle of chemo while I have all the "fun" of running in hot weather.  But because he's awesome and popular, the youth group in his parish is also raising money for cancer patients and research- you know Relay For Life?  Here's their page- Beulah Youth!  
Go, Beulah youth!

Now for the trials of the Out-of-Shape Episcopal Priest Trying Desperately to Do Good Things Because Her Friends Deserve a Life With A Cure.

Day #2 of training indicated a 30 min run or bike.  Since the coaches said I'm a strong biker, I should concentrate on other disciplines, I decided to be a good girl and go do a run.

It was 87 degrees, with 44% humidity.  That means July weather up here.  But I went out anyway.  After all, knowing it was warm and sticky out, I took the opportunity to have a frozen chocolate smoothie for breakfast.  I know when the outdoor thing is going to work in my favor.  When I get chocolate, that's when.

This workout was probably more taxing than yesterday's.  I'm just a not a runner.  I tried the Fat Cyclist's trick of pretending he's on a bike and running in a circular motion.  But you know what?  Poor Fatty.  He's deluded.  Because you can't coast while running, that's why.

So I changed terrain and ran over the field of a local park.  That was fun and I could make believe I was actually running, as opposed to the shuffle-shuffle I was actually doing.  But all too soon, the park ended and it was back onto sidewalk.

Why does CT hate overhanging shade trees so much?  The roads are in bright sunlight, and all the shade concentrated on regulation yards.  It's like... SUBURBIA!!!

Upon getting home, I had the same issues as yesterday: NO appetite at all, so I forced down a glass of water.  Lucky for me, I'm starting to get hungry now.  And the nutrition people said I should be eating a few more points, so I think I'm going to go make myself something carby and delicious involving tofu.

Tomorrow, a swim coach comes over to try and teach me something about swimming.  Pray for his soul.  

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

First work out

(M and me on a tandem in Acadia last summer.  Because bikes are workout candy, that's why.)

I wrote to my coach this morning asking a question about the training schedule.  Most days, there's at least two sports listed, and I wanted to know which one I should choose.  
Ha ha. 
Meet Bricks, the part of the tri world in which you do two sports one right after the other, to acclimate yourself to switching sports.  
Today's weren't so hard PHYSICALLY- a 7.5 mile bike ride, and 9x50 drills in a pool.  I have no idea what 9x50 drills are yet, so I just swam nine laps with a different stroke each time.  Swim clinic is Thursday.  I bet they'll straighten me out.  
I did encounter two issues, however.  The first is a problem I've faced in every endurance event- I totally lose my appetite.  I'm not hungry in the morning, anyway, so I tend to drink smoothies for breakfast.  But about 5 miles into the bike ride, I generally don't want to drink or eat anything.  Since the name of the game in endurance is to fuel while being active so you don't "bonk" (see below), I really, really have to figure out a good way to fuel that won't make me feel sick to my stomach.  Although I understand mid-event puking is sometimes considered a badge of honor, (YOU'RE HARDCORE, BABY!), it just sounds rather unladylike to me.  
The other problem is the transition.  As I pulled myself out of the pool and came into the locker room, I toweled off and met my nemesis: trying to pull spandex bike shorts on over a body that is not totally dry. Should I spare you the details?  Hmmm... hard to tell.  Will you guys donate more or less if I tell you how awkward that little problem is?  Let me know!
Anyway, I got home, forced down the rest of my drink, and washed up, vacuumed the bedroom, made the bed, and washed the dishes... all trying to convince my appetite to come back so I can have lunch.  I'll obviously have to work on this... 
PS- bonk:  bonk is a term in endurance events like marathons or centuries where you suddenly have no energy left.  At all.  You just stop.  You feel like you can't move at all and that death would be too much trouble.  I've never bonked quite that badly, but I've had my moments where I've gotten close.  (My favorite was standing at a rest stop, head on my handlebars while a friend coaxed me to try and drink more stuff and I begged for a nap.  She was right, though, a drink and a snack, and I was good to go.)    The cure to bonking can be a little rest, a stubborn teammate who will force you back on the bike, and immediate ingestion of something high-calorie- gatorade, clif bars, peanut butter... once the energy starts circulating in your body, you can usually move again.  Some people swear by GU or gels, but I find these cake-batter consistency chemical creations to be among the nastier things on earth.  They are what Satan will feed people in Hell.  

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Fundraising page up!

My fundraising page is up!

Bike Priest!!

So, I've been hearing about Team in Training for a year now, after a PA I work with did the Nation's Tri.  I thought she was insane.  Triathlons... you've GOT to be nuts!  Aren't those things about a hundred miles long*?  But she said something about it benefiting leukemia and lymphoma patients, so I thought it could be fun.  After all, my grandfather died from lymphoma...

Fast forward nine months, when I went to an informational meeting for Team in Training.  It was great, and they seemed totally jazzed about their mission.  I decided I'd want to get my family to support me to do something in memory of my grandfather.  Unfortunately, the only events were marathons (not quite) and centuries.  Yes, please, but since I was still doing rehab for my busted hand, a century in four months seemed a little premature.  Not to mention that my family was not all that crazy about the idea of me doing a memory trip.

A few months after that, I got awful news- a good friend- a really great guy who's married to this awesome woman- got the worst news of his life.  He had tumors.  He was diagnosed with advanced lymphoma and the treatment kicked in.

I knew it was time.  I asked him to be my teammate, and he agreed!  So I am doing the Nation's Triathlon in September in honor of my friend Ben.  Because Ben is facing a life where his cancer can't be cured- he will just go from remission to remission to remission.

Wouldn't it be awesome if he could finally achieve a cure, and quit waiting for remission to end?

Over the next few months, I'll chronicle my trials and travails in tri training.  I've never wanted to do a tri in my whole life.  The only sport I am confident in is the biking thing.  The bike leg will be like therapy before the run!  So I'll be learning to run decently, to swim fast, and to wear a wetsuit without dying of self-loathing.

I want to beat my fundraising goal of $2,800 because I want to do MORE than the minimum, so every extra dollar goes to cancer research!  And, as a bonus, I want Ben to hit remission by then.  You know why?  Because he deserves it!  (Though I know I have no control over that.  But it would be awesome if my teammate could be there with his family and friends, and have a chemo-free week ahead of him, would't it?)

*It's the IRONMAN that's a hundred miles long.  I'll be doing an Olympic distance: shorter everything.  I have no plans to do an Ironman, though I'm told that everyone says that in the beginning.
**The picture IS of my bike!  My roadie is on top, my hybrid is in the middle, and Martin's is on the bottom.  He needed a sharp point chiseled off his wheel (and he hasn't had a flat since) and my roadie was brand new.  I was having my stuff (like pedals) switched off my hybrid onto my roadie.  Happy birthday, roadie!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Not exactly a break...

It's not that I haven't had anything to write about.  It's just that between fighting a lovely killer upper respiratory infection and working nights, my brain and body have been fried.

However, I did almost literally drag myself through the Bishop's 5K yesterday.  I was creamed by the clergy who DID get their training in, but I finished in the top half of the field, which is a decent feeling.  I'm in great pain today, but the cause is always worthwhile!