Friday, April 30, 2010

IMSG - Pre race

* Just a quick note - this will be long and detailed. I want to remember everything!*
We left Wednesday afternoon and proceeded to make the 4 hour drive to St George in 7 hours. Total blizzard for 75% of the drive. Dark barren roads with no overhead lights + headlights on a car = reflective snow which means visibility is at a zero. We spent our drive behind semi trucks when we could find them, and looking out our side windows other time watching the lines on the road. It was not fun. Thankfully our kids were great! We finally rolled in at midnight and stayed with my great friend Sylvia.

Thursday we headed to the Ironman expo and got all checked in. It's a very official, secured procedure that even my family couldn't join me for.
First up was signing my life away....er, uh, I mean signing more release forms.
Then came the blue security wristband that would be a part of me for the weekend (and still is actually, I'm not ready for it all to be over)
Then the timing chip
Checked out the Ironman store a little then headed to a practice swim with Polly and Mike

Don't let the happy faces fool you, we were still dry at this point :) Getting in the water was cold and I must have stood there chest deep questioning what in the world I was going to do in 2 days. This was freezing. It was actually ok once we got going, but I was never super comfortable and was nervous for 2.4 miles of that cold. The winds and waves picked up heading back into shore which only added a few more nerves.
I wanted to do a short post swim ride but just couldn't warm up. I had been fighting a head/chest cold since early in the week, so decided it smarter to heal than to ride. I was so nervous how I was going to be comfortable on the bike after such a long swim, almost nothing worse than shivering on a bike going 20+mph.

Thursday evening was the pre-race meeting and athlete dinner. Decent food, fun friends, and lots of info about race day getting me more pumped and nervous. I did not sleep well that night. Was up for 1.5 hours coughing badly before I finally fell asleep.

Friday morning was a ride from Sand Hollow. I wanted to practice the first couple hills so just went out and rode easy. It felt nice. That ride is also where I decided against using the front aero wheel I had planned on using. There was just too much push from the winds and I would rather feel confident and in control and in aero, than nervous and out of aero all the time. So glad I decided to bring both sets of wheels down.

Got back and went on a short 15 minute run while my twin sister Stephanie rode her bike next to me. It was SO great having her there! She flew in from Michigan just to come to this race. I felt good on the run and would've loved to run longer than I did.

The rest of the day was so busy, and I will probably do a few things differently in the future so I can spend more down time plotting and planning and thinking like here.
But anyway, she and I stopped at the expo center where the PowerTri boys worked on my bike (thanks guys!!), I got body marked, and felt rushed and stressed about everything left to do.

Next we headed to Sand Hollow to get my bike all checked into transition, along with the T1 bag. Look at all those bikes and bags!


I was hoping for a swim, but yeah, it was crazy windy yet again and time was short. I hooked up with Heath to borrow a neoprene swim cap and we were on our way to T2. Dropped off that bag and headed back to the great house we stayed in for dinner. Packed everyone up yet again and headed back into town for the Ironman kids race. My Mckayla and Talmage did the 1 mile with daddy and I ran the 200 yard run with our newly 2 year old Kaitlyn.

They had a great time and although I was getting tired and my ITBand was tired of all the activity, I'm glad we went.

video

Finally time to head home for the night and settle down. I had to pack my 3 remaining bags (they gave us a morning clothes bag, swim to bike bag, bike special needs bag, bike to run bag, and run special needs bag, it made me giddy seeing all those bags when I checked in). Also had to put extra things in I had forgotten for the T1 and T2 bags. SO much detail going over and over what should go in the bags and making sure it's all there. Next time I definitely need to start sooner. Finally to bed by 11:00pm, and thankfully slept well.

Race Day post next.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

It's kinda like childbirth...

This whole first time Ironman thing. You anticipate getting pregnant excitedly, a little nervous, but mainly excited - and naive. You feel pretty good at first, then as pregnancy gets hard you wonder what you were thinking. Your body is tired and heavy. You think about the baby all the time, wondering what he/she will be like, wondering if you can handle the event that childbirth is. Then in that last week as a birth day looms you're so excited to get on with it, but a little sad to see it over too. Then you're rewarded greatly after much hard work. You forget about all the pain, and eventually do it all over again (and then question again "what was I thinking?!")

And so it is with Ironman. I signed up very excited, nervous of course, and naive. As training was just in base, no really big miles yet, I was feeling good about things. Then as the weekends went from 3 hours of training to 10 hours of training I got tired, a little cranky, and wondered why and how I was doing this, but still held onto that excitement for race day. Now the race is upon us and I can't believe it! I'm so excited to see what the day will hold and what my body can do, but as with the end of pregnancy, I am a little sad to see it this journey end, and (unlike pregnancy) hope this last week doesn't pass over me too quickly without me even realizing it.


Yesterday I spent all morning running the transition area at the Spring Sprint Tri where several friends became triathletes, and others just enjoyed another great race. I enjoyed cheering on others, and even had some people come up to me to wish me luck for this weekend. Thanks!
I've felt a little cheated of the taper mentally because I've been so worried about how I'm going to run. Well, yesterday after the tri, I got to try it. I felt confident enough to put in a couple miles at least, and needed to know at least a little, what running on Saturday was going to feel like. So after a 2 hour ride I pulled on the running shoes and ran 3 miles. I wore a RecoverIce menthol soaked ace wrap, had taken 2 Tylenol in efforts to quickly experiment with pain meds, and while it wasn't pain free for sure, there wasn't a limp. I know I'll finish the race, and I have a fair amount of confidence it could be close to what I wanted.


I've finally finished a couple nagging tasks to get ready for this trip, and am getting excited to go. Still packing and planning left to do, and a busy week with my baby's 2nd birthday, my sister and her husband coming into town, a couple Muscleworks appointments, a few short workouts left, and a couple of days at work (yeah, that's just Monday-Wednesday), then we'll be off Wednesday afternoon.


I'll be updating the blog as much as I can this week as to keep ya'll informed about what's going on, and how this whole Ironman thing works. But for now, here's the deal for those of you not traveling to St George. If you go to IronmanStGeorge.com on Saturday and click on Race Day Coverage (which will take you to Ironman.com), enter my number, 125, you'll be able to track my progress live. They'll show a swim, T1, several bike splits, T2, and a couple run splits as I cross over those mats. You will also be able to watch the finish line via video feed LIVE. Pretty cool!



The photos in this post I had taken for PowerTri in February after the Tuacahn Duathlon. I'm pretty happy with them.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Diez - Dez - Zehn - Dix - Dieci - TEN!

10 Days! Holy Moly!! I. am. excited.

No really, I am :) The leg is feeling maybe 70% of healthy right now. Flip turns didn't hurt this morning (except 1), walking is fine, riding didn't hurt it at all yesterday. I think I may venture out for a 1/2 mile run tonight or tomorrow just to feel things out. I know the 10 seconds I have tried there's still pain. So we will see. I am hopeful.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Dear Karma.....

It's time to pay up


As some of you might know, I injured my right calf somehow last Monday and have been in a lot of pain since then. I haven't run now in 10 days and yes, have been panicked the whole time. It happened during speedwork, I didn't trip, fall, or roll anything, something just got tight and painful. I've been walking without a limp now for 4 days, and that's a big achievement. I've been visiting a sports medicine place to try to work on it, and it's the craziest most painful massage ever. My diagnosis is still kind of a mystery, tight peronials, peronial nerve irritation, micro tears, I don't know, all I know is I can't run.


Like I mentioned earlier, I've been freaking out. Everyone says how there's so much time left, but ya know what? When I can't run 10 seconds without a huge limp and a TON of pain, and have a marathon to run AFTER 112 miles on the bike and 2.4 in the water - 2-3 weeks does not sound like a long time. Sure this could have happened in the middle of training and wrecked it. Yes I'm grateful I got all the long hard stuff done first, but uh, I didn't do all that long hard stuff to walk limping through a 6 hour marathon. Nope, sure didn't.


I've been spending a lot of time on the bike which is good for me. I'm happy there. My swim training has suffered some the last couple weeks as flip turns with one leg are annoying. I was pleased to see some good endurance at my swim on Friday though. I've even done some aqua jogging (Thanks Cindi for reminding me to do what I can, and not worry about what I can't).


There has been some progress made with the leg, but not enough yet. Not enough to run the marathon that I trained for. This next week will be the tell-tell week. If things aren't noticably better by the end of it, drastic measures will be taken - sounds serious huh? :)


I've been a big whiny butt for a while now dealing with this. I'm still pretty pissed, but that's not going to help. The last couple weeks I would keep hoping I'd wake up and have everyone tell me "I told you so" because my leg was all better and I was just paranoid. Unfortunately, that hasn't happened, and I don't plan on being magically better tomorrow anymore. I try to keep my mind off of everything and just do what I can. Today was a great day for that.


I spent the morning out on my bike. 75 miles with a smile on my face. I cheered for so many friends I know - Jonathan, Stacey, Dan, Sarah, Chuck, Steve, April - and so many others I didn't know. Seriously, I think I passed everyone in both the half and full marathon at least once, except the top 5 men and women whom I somehow missed. It was great. The sun was out, I was warm, no stress, roads were closed to traffic, just a great time cheering on all my great friends whom all had great races!
After that I rode up to Davis County to see the ending of the Legacy Duathlon, so fun to see so many people being active. Then I enjoyed the last 25 miles, just by myself, enjoying the legs that I have built, the warm sunshiny world around me that God built, and the lovely green bike that Quintana Roo built :)


While I'm not really superstitous like this, I'll take what I can get right now.


Dear Karma,

I spent the day cheering for all my friends with no ill intentions. No intentions to be out there racing myself, no waa's because I couldn't run, no "I could beat her/him", just some honest support for my friends. I rode around that course for 30 miles with a cowbell in hand cheering for everyone I saw. I went out nice and early as to be home for my family later on, and speaking of family, I even stopped by a lemonade stand and bought a cup from 2 little girls. So if you can find it in you, I could really use some payback now in the form of a healthy leg. Thank you!


~Leslie

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The seeds are sown

Well, finished the last long ride before Ironman, and the farthest I've ever ridden.
110 miles, 6.5 hours, a nice size group, warm-ish weather I could wear shorts in, and good nutrition - yep, sounds good to me!

If you want a little more detail, 6 of us started from the Harmons in Sandy, rode into Downtown SLC, into the Avenues, behind the Capital, then north to about Lagoon. Then we hopped on the Legacy Parkway trail and rode it south to the airport where we did a out and back there, I tried to hang with the boys who pushed me hard (mmmm, a good hard working feeling though), then we eventually made it back to the starting point.
I continued on from there for my last 30 miles alone, south to point of the mountain into a decent headwind I was hoping would return the favor on the way back. And guess what? IT DID! I got to ride a tail wind 15 miles home. Oh it was so great! What a sweet reward after that many miles. It felt so great to be pushing 24mph but not feel like it was really hard. I'm so happy with yesterday's ride. I tried out some new nutrition, First Endurance, and have to say I think I may be in love. My energy levels stayed so steady! I wasn't struggling at the end physically, mentally I wasn't grumpy. I'll write up a better review when I've had a little more experience with it, but lets just say I'm intrigued for sure.
Rob, Bret, Josh, Me
I so could not have done with without the excellent company that came along. We had Sandy and Bret for the first half of the ride - thanks guys! Rob was just full of wise Ironman coaching, Josh was a great pace partner and easy to talk to, Cindi, well, she's just Cindi. What a happy, positive, determined woman she is. I can't wait to see her get her reward at Ironman in 19 short days. You deserve it Cin!

Did I mention I even had a pace car? Yeah, ok, so it was only for 30 seconds, but it was super fun to have my swimming friend Troy pull up along side me. I even rode by my mom who was in the car and waved and smiled big. It's having all the friendly support from everyone that is making this journey SO great! Thank You All!!!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Wind and Trainers and Jellybeans - oh my!

Another week closer. Can't believe we can say Ironman is in 3 weeks and 6 days. 3 WEEKS and !!!! It's funny, sometimes I think I'm doing great mentally and then I start another long workout and think otherwise. Thank goodness for friends and family who offer support and encouragement and for training partners to come along for the ride. THANK YOU ALL!!!

The first order of good news is that my dad is doing better. He is home now and working on getting strong. I'll have to write him his own training plan so he can come down to spectate Ironman :) Thank you all for your concern, I and we really appreciate it!

The weekly work outs get done, aren't super long, so I'll leave those out for now. Friday was long ride day. I needed to fit in the run on Saturday for family timing reasons. Couldn't find anyone to ride with, so I took off on my own. Earlier that morning I went on a walk through the neighborhood with the kids and admired the blue skies and calm conditions. I thought of Steve getting out for his ride and hoped he was enjoying it. I hoped the weather would hang in there for me too. It unfortunately did not. The winds picked up and it was cold. I stayed warm enough, but those winds were brutal. Probably not as brutal as SG a few weeks ago with Sarah, but close. I kept thinking "What the heck!? I've done my time with winds, I've already played in this for 100 miles. UHG!!!". I really tried to make the best of it, but it was so hard mentally. I was averaging 13 mph - that's ridiculous! I needed to get these miles in and was now fighting daylight too. I had to find a way to cope. And here it is
:
Yep, jumped on the trainer for the remaining 2.5 hours. This was no ordinary trainer ride though. My 9 year old basic mag trainer crapped out last month, but I was determined to get this ride in. I asked my sweet husband to drive down to PowerTri and get me a new one. Yeah, he had just driven the 30 minutes home from AF about an hour earlier, but he packed the kids up and headed back down, grabbed this lovely Kurt Kinetic Fluid Road Machine and rescued me. I kept riding and by the time I got back it was set up for me and ready with only about 10 minutes of down time. Thank You, Thank You babe! I will put this thing to good use for sure! It's so smooth and makes getting workouts in so much easier.
So anyway, got my 6 hours in, finishing at 8:30pm, got in a too short 5 minute transition run and was done. Tried to replenish the glycogen stores, hopped in an ice bath with what limited ice was in the ice maker, pulled on the recovery tights (which I am getting better at btw), and went to bed.

Morning came much too soon, but I was up at 5:30am getting ready to get this run over with. 6:15am Jonathan and Karie and I set out. I failed to realize it would still be very dark by that point, so we had to run the streets for a bit, then ran around Daybreak Lake, and ran the canal roads south almost to Camp Williams then back to 13400 S where our cars were. 22 miles in all! First time running 22 for a training run (ran 21 before the Ogden Marathon last year), and probably the last for this year too :)
It wasn't all that bad, just the first 18 miles :) I was just unmotivated, it was cold and windy and I just wanted to be at home with my family eating lots of warm food. Jonathan and Karie were great motivators though and I plugged along. Those last 4 miles from 18-22 actually felt good. I could "see" and end in sight, and although my legs were heavy and a bit tight, I was able to pick up the pace and finish strong. SUCH a great feeling to be done!

That was of course followed by a recovery drink, warm yummy breakfast, and hefty 20 lbs worth of ice bath.
Before

After

And the bane of my Easter existence:

Happy Easter all!
I hope it was spent with your families reflecting on the things that are most important in life. Carry on!