Monday, September 3, 2012

Here's hoping this is possible...

Maybe someday I will learn to choose a major race at a different point of the season than "right after the start of the program year".

This month is insanity-spaghetti, topped with crazysauce.  What it means is that I feel a little like I'm failing utterly in training AND in my job AND in my personal life.  Nothing is getting the energy or focus I should be giving to it, and thus I fail humanity, yet again.

I spent most of last week being horrified that September was actually here.  Not to mention that my parents were visiting for their first trip to the Pacific Northwest ever and needed to go to cool places and my M finally got a break from his fellowship to come home for a visit.  And I have just a little more time left to build my fitness so that I don't die at altitude before I go into taper for the race.

Perhaps it's not all that surprising that yesterday was the first day I'd gotten out to the grocery store in about two weeks.  (For the record, my parents went to the store the day they got here, because they feared they were going to starve to death.  When they asked what I had and I pointed out dry beans and rice and a pack of tofu, they high-tailed it to Fred Meyers and came home with things like cereal and yogurt and milk and chicken.  I stuck with the vegetarian thing, except for the time when my mom insisted on the adventure of a trip to Jack in the Box, which I have never been to.  At that location, it was chicken or starve.)

I started soaking beans last night and pressure-cooked three batches of beans and made some rice-and-beans for a nice picnic tonight.  And then I froze the remaining beans for later use.  So now I have lots of rations.  Bonus, our weekly grocery bill for M and me together was $70, mostly veggies.

This week, I hope to take some time to go to Bend to pre-ride the worst of the race course to see exactly what I've gotten myself into, and to knock off my greatest fear: the altitude.  I'm a little afraid... ok, scared spitless... that I will be so badly affected by the altitude that I will run out of air and keel over on an uphill section of the course that has a 24% grade, where I will then suffer from a non-stop bloody nose and get hauled off to the medical tent by kind race officials who will slap me with the dreaded DNF.  (Did not finish).  That would make me cry.

In the meantime, I went to REI to pick up some Hammer nutrition, since I discovered that the aid stations are NOT Clif, like I thought they were, but Hammer.  And considering that Hammer did not make my tummy thrilled at Tri in the Grove, I'd better start working out with Hammer stuff so I'm not surprised on race day.

I've got Perpetum chewables, which look like giant mega-size chewy tablets.  God only knows how I will chomp that sucker down.  Hammer apparently doesn't make gummie chews.

I've got Endurolytes, and I actually look forward to trying those.  Will Endurolytes solve my long-standing leg cramping issues?  (In a related issue, some serious foam rolling seems to help the deep knots in my calves that form during those cramp sessions.)

I have drink mix in two flavors.  I hated HEED previously.  Now I get to find out if it is really that bad or if the volunteers just mixed it poorly.

And I have gels.  My nemesis.  I know gels are one of the fastest ways to get much-needed calories to screaming blood cells.  I just dislike the gooey sweetness.  So I am going to conquer the gels.  Hopefully, I'll find a few flavors that I can live with.

In the meantime, aside from a swim for technique and form, a long run, a short run, and a hard intervals bike ride, here's what else I did last week.  

Crater Lake, which I would seriously love to ride.  (It goes up higher than Bend does, so if I survive Bend, I'll survive Crater Lake.)

The Space Needle!  Ooooo.  Bucket list item=crossed off.

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