Adjusted Reality

“Reality can be beaten with enough imagination.” – Mark Twain

The magical growing shirts from last August

Last August, I went thrift store shopping and bought a bunch of shirts.  Like, a metric boatload.  It’s REALLY fun to do that when they all cost, like, 3 bucks.  I was super excited to be able to refresh my closet.  Some of the shirts went beyond the typical ironic or triathlon related t-shirts I typically wear, and made me look a little more (just a little bit) like a grown up.  Not that I need that on a daily basis, but it’s kind of nice to be able to wake up and decide if I want to look 12 or more than 12.

Aug18-1

One of said new-not-new shirts.

Sadly, due to the great nutrition experiment failure of 2015, most of those shirts had shrank so much that I couldn’t comfortably wear them by mid-September.  It was pretty crazy depressing to have gained that much in a month.  So, for almost a whole year, I have been staring at a bunch of shirts that didn’t quite fit that I’ve never worn.

Zliten, who has also lost a bunch of weight, decided to start wearing his size Large shirts after I continued to tease him about how his XL shirts were looking like tents.  Or mumus.  Or mumu printed tents.  Now, he is at the point where he’s just a few lbs away from his goal.  I am… somewhere in the middle of this process.  I’ve got a long way to go to get to the same point.  However, I figured I owed it to myself to try the same.

Oddly enough, those shirts have sat there long enough that they have grown again to their previous size.  Who knew that 5 months of working on weight loss would have that effect?

I still am cranky that it has taken me 5 months to undo this.  I still am cranky that the numbers say I should be losing about 8 lbs a month and I’m losing 2-3.  However, seeing the pictures I don’t hate, seeing myself in the mirror with a smile and not a grimace, seeing the progress even if it’s slow?  It’s worth it.

Mar7-3

Feeling a lot different than this girl from March even if it’s only ~15 lbs or so difference.

I’ve accepted a lot of things in this process.

For some reason, I’m always going to need to stick to the -1000 calories to make any sort of progress.  My body just seems to process calories differently than the fitbit thinks, the nutritionist thinks, that logic dictates.  I’ve read some studies about losing a bunch of weight, and how your body actually burns less calories overall.  While my nutritionist told me that was bull honkey, I think that math seems to back it up in my case.

I’ve accepted that I will probably be at this for a long time, and I should just stay the course because it takes so long to get rolling once I stop.  While I’d love to have been able to diet for 4 months of offseason and have gotten to race weight, it’s just not how it goes for me.  I have to track my food.  I have to maintain a deficit that is small enough to still train but large enough to make a difference.  I have to be patient, persistent, and relentless.

I’m going to probably not be able to come up to 100% form this year.  Last year, I felt a big change between maintaining a deficit and eating enough, or more calories than I needed.  I don’t feel very different right now, but that’s because I’ve been doing this for months.  I *know* that once I’m done with the weight loss, and I bring my calories up, my performance will increase a bit automatically.  I have to be kind to myself when I fail to hit run paces I think should be easy, because they will come easier when it’s time.

I need to remember that the time to skimp on food is NOT before, during, or after a workout.  Yeah, it’s more fun to eat pizza than it is to eat cyborg boob milk gels, but unless I can either eat the pizza as pre- or mid-ride fuel, or consume that pizza within an hour of my workouts, it’s not doing me much good.  My workout sucks, and instead of being able to use that fuel to power a workout, it powers it’s way to my adipose.

Aug2-3

This would have gone straight to the thighs… except it was at hour 2 of a 5 hour bike ride.  So it actually went straight to the quads (in a good way).

I also need to realize that I’m in the danger zone right about now.  This is what always happens.  I make some progress, I’m feeling good about myself.  I want to lose more weight, but I no longer hate the mirror, some of my clothes fit… and I loosen up on tracking.  I can see it starting already.  I haven’t tracked since yesterday afternoon.  I’ve totally been busy, but obviously not so busy as I’m writing this blog.  This is the way that progress ends.  Not with a bang, but a whimper.

On that note, off to track, off to be persistent, patient, and relentless, and maybe I’ll be able to find that the next size down shirts have also magically grown again.

Rolling heads and the finite amount of give-a-shit.

Last week was one where all the wheels kind of fell off.  And you know what?  It’s ok.  It’s easy to start freaking out when your routine gets ripped to shreds and your brain feels like jello, but sometimes you just have to roll with the tide until it’s calmer.

Aug15-1

Or roll like heads?  As seen in the parking garage where I work. #domainthings

Thing #1 that broke routine: The Olympics.

My DVR is worthless and rarely can pick up more than a day of Olympic coverage, and randomly decides to not record segments.  So, that means to stay on top of it, I’ve been staying up wayyyyy too late a lot of nights binge watching so I have enough room for the next day’s content.

I’ve been joking that it’s super hard to be an athlete in training when the Olympics are on, but it’s SO TRUE.

Thing #2: Game Jam.

Our workplace does this AWESOME thing every year – they let us break up into small teams, and take our own game ideas from concept to completion.  It’s a super fun and exciting time, but it’s also a super stressful and hectic time trying to learn new things and ship a completed game in the span of a week.  I normally have ebb and flow at work, and it was all flow last week, all the time, including one day where I didn’t leave until after midnight.

Thing #3: the Personal Fitness Trainer exam.

I had been studying for this exam by rolling through the practice test over and over.  Then, the day before, we did a little research online and found out that it was supposed to be MUCH HARDER than that.  UGH.  So instead of the hour or two we planned to do review and prep on Monday, we crammed for about 5 hours, leaving about 6.5 hours of sleep.

The good news is that we passed!  I got a 95% (and you only needed 69).  The bad news is we had to go into work late because of it, which meant we needed to work late.  This meant a super late dinner, then we celebrated with some beverages and the Olympics… and then it was wayyyy later than reasonable on a weekday.  Oops.  So, the test and our reaction to the test killed about 2 full days this week.

Aug15-2

That happy but slightly crazed expression after passing the exam?  Sorta sums up last week…

Three awesome, fun things, that combined into the perfect storm of tossing my life into chaos last week.  What did that mean for my day to day?  Less than optimal rest, shady nutrition, less intensity and volume in training than expected, and feeling crazy overwhelmed.  I didn’t track, I didn’t get my fruits and veggies, I definitely went over calories some day, I didn’t take my vitamins, and I missed some workouts and cut some short.

I have learned over the years that stress, is stress, is stress.  Doesn’t matter which type.  You have a finite amount of Give-a-Shit, and while you can borrow from said Give-a-Shit, you always have to pay it back (and if you don’t… hello Burnout).  So, instead of getting down on myself, or rallying and trying to fit everything in a crazy week, I let some things slide.

The great news is the stressors ALL were temporary.  I’m taking time off before I start on my next course.  Maybe I’ll start this week, but probably when I get back from vacation.  Either way, it’s back to reading and studying at my own pace instead of cramming for a scheduled and proctored test.  The Olympics are ending this weekend.  Game Jam is over.  Life is returning to normal.

The other great news is that my weight didn’t take a beating.  I weighed in this morning and it was actually way better than expected.  Whew!  I know I can’t get away with this for much longer, so back to the wagon, on the straight and narrow, and all the other euphemisms for picking myself up, dusting myself off, and doing better this week.

So, back to it.  Let’s roll.

Workouts: the goal this week is to hit the gist of them.  It’s rainy and cooler, so some bike miles might move to the trainer, or they might convert to run miles since OMG it’s in the 70s!!!

  • Monday: 3+ mile run, weights
  • Tuesday: 1500m swim, endurance cycle
  • Wednesday: plan is ~3 hours of riding including commuting and recovery ride.  We’ll see how this goes.
  • Thursday: weights, 1500m swim (OWS if I can, pool if not)
  • Friday: off
  • Saturday: shorty 3-ish mile run
  • Sunday: 8 mile trail run, short bike ride

This should be 10 hours, give or take.  I’m actually feeling pretty darn rested right now, so this shouldn’t be a problem barring extenuating circumstances.

Aug15-3

Lots of takeout last week.  At least I tried to make with the healthy options (most of the time).

Eating: get back to the good stuff and a normal routine.  Please?

  • No takeout until either: a) Friday night or b)I have exhausted all leftovers and sandwich fixins.  I think Friday night will come first.  I’ve got a lot in my freezer.
  • Take my vitamins every day.
  • Track my food, stay -1000 under my burn.
  • Drink 4 of my 24 oz bottles of water per day independent of exercise hydration.
  • Fruits and veggies.  Eat them.  Five a day.

Life: calm my shit.  And do the normal things.

  • Do not stay up until I can count the hours until work on one hand.  In fact, if I need three hands to count the amount of hours I can sleep, I’m doing it right.
  • School is last priority this week.  If I have motivation and nothing else I need to do, go for it.  If not, I’m going to take the week to relax and let the noodles in my head firm up.
  • Get things ready for vacation.

And with that… rainy wet (but cooler, yayayayay) Monday ENGAGE!

Baywatch, flat tire ghosts, and run sex – the Jack’s Generic Triathlon race report.

It’s been a very good (busy, but good) week.  I’ll get to the rest of what’s going on soon, but it’s time for an overdue race report.

jacks4

Spoiler alert: I finished.

A week ago, I raced Jack’s Generic Triathlon (the sprint version).  I’ve done this the last three years.  2013 I raced the Intermediate distance and realized that a longer triathlon ending with a 6 mile run with no shade in August is not exactly my cup of tea.  So, we race the sprint version now, typically to kick off the end of offseason.  This year, I’m about 6 weeks into a very gradual build (but still a build), which means I’m going in with more fitness but also more fatigue.  What condition would win?

Turns out, the fitness.  Who knew, right?

I tried a new thing with recovery week on race week – I split it over two actual weeks (Thursday – Wednesday).  Due to life getting in the way, I ended up taking this whole week lighter, but on a normal week, I can see how it would work out better.  Physically, I think it was perfect for a B race and I’ll do it again.  Mentally, it was a little weird not having a Mon-Sun week of recovery, but I’m looking forward to giving it another go for the next B race.

The swim challenge ended up falling the day before the race, so I swam 5 easy laps (3750m) in open water less than 24 hours before toeing the line.  That’s not actually something I would have chosen to do, but I think it might have actually worked out.  Between the long swim and the few days of recovery before, I think I came to form on the right day.  Instead of being twitchy or oddly fatigued the day before, I had this nice tiredness about me that made sense, and it meant I stayed calmer than normal and actually slept really well.

jacks3

Before caffeine sleepy “why am I up so early” smile.

The morning of, I had one of those new cliff nut butter bars and it was a perfect breakfast.  Pure carbs seem to make my stomach icky in the morning, but carb + fat is the best combo.  Plus, it’s a bar, takes no preparation, and I can easily pack it for an out of town race.  Three more nutrition successes: I had a caffeinated gel about 45 minutes before the race, I brought a water bottle to continue to drink up until the race start, and I took two electrolye caps.  I think all three did good things for me.

I was in the last wave, so I had a lot of waiting around (female triathletes end up having to wait… a lot… so I’m used to it).  Finally, once it was time to go, I got *kind of* in the right position and the volunteer that was manning the time trial start told me to run like Baywatch, so I did my best impression on the way to the water.  I hope there aren’t are pictures. :)

Swim:

The long swim the day before was either going to make this awesome, or suck.  I started out paddling my way through loose hydrilla (which thankfully they had spent the week cutting and harvesting, the swim course was REALLY NICE compared to the grabby plant monsters that normally are around in August), and just worked the swim course.

I have zero bad things to say about this swim.  I feel like I nailed the pace right away and kept my effort strong but not over the line.  I got out of the water feeling like I had done some work but not shelled.  I don’t think I got passed once and I passed a lot of people.  I clocked my best time on this course I’ve been swimming in races since 2011.  If I had to throw out a negative, I placed further down in my age group than normal, but we ended up having some fasties, so it had nothing to do with my performance.

Swim time: 10:59 for 500m.  8/29 AG.

T1:

Not much to note here, except I ended up having to race incredibly close to swim in, which is my least favorite.  And… I still beat Zliten, who was racked right in front (jerk! :D).  It was my worst T1 in years, but I don’t think I’ve ever had to rack this far back.

T1 time: 3:01

jacks2

Working with the pictures I have of this race.  So you get a lot of selfies.  That’s why you’re here, right?

Bike:

I’m definitely still getting used to this bike, so it’s a little awkward, but it rides like butter. Awkward butter? I mounted and got going without incident since I actually remembered to put myself in the right gear.  I pushed the effort really hard on the first half of the course and when I took a gel I checked my garmin.  I was at 20.6 mph average! RAD! Then we hit a bunch of hills into the wind and my happy little balloon deflated.

After that, I let off the gas a little because I was really ripping my legs off keeping that pace. One of these days I’ll have the confidence just to go all out on the bike and see what happens on the run.  Practice might be a good place to do that, but I’ve just never been able to simulate that high of an effort not in a race.  I almost ALWAYS run very well off the bike in training and it’s a toss up in racing. *shrug* If I had it figured out completely it wouldn’t be any fun, right?

During a portion of chipseal uphill into the wind, I was convinced my tire was flat. I actually asked the guy next to me and he told me it wasn’t. Brain ghosts. Weird. Thankful it wasn’t, but again, still getting used to the feel of the Death Star.  On the way back in, I ping ponged back and forth between some dudes and had to do a whole lot of “on your left” and probably had to double pass about 20 times and hop the yellow line at least 10 because of course crowding. #lastwaveprobs

While I have some improvements to make, I’m pretty happy with how I rode at this point in time.  I was almost going to get grumpy about not being able to hold 19 mph, let alone 20, but this is my best bike split here by far, by almost 1 mph.  Some (maybe all) of this is purchased speed. I think I’m still ok with that. The awesome thing is this stuff will be even speedier once I really learn how to ride this bike and get comfortable with the new position.

Bike time: 41:34 for 13 miles. 5/29 AG.

T2:

Again, nothing really to note but my terrible rack position.  My time was pretty average.  I made the choice, as I typically do in August, to run with a frozen hand held that I stored in a cooler, so that took an extra second or two to navigate.

T2 time: 1:31

Run:

After a pretty great swim and bike, I get onto the run course and ugghhhhh my legs.  They did not want to turn over quickly AT ALL.  I’m looking at my garmin seeing 11 minute miles, which felt like 9 minute miles.  No bueno.  I’m starting to see people pass me who I passed on the bike and I’m like… no no no no… crap… not this again.

A few dudes passed me, girls not in my age group, girls in my age group but doing the intermediate distance, and then finally, a girl with a 35 on her leg and a race number close to mine ran past.  This was my cue to go, since that was the plan.

It’s easy to say sitting in the chair in front of my computer that my goal is to try to go with anyone who passed me.  Of course you want to do that.  But in the moment, when you’re sweaty, hot, tired, sore… and then someone changes the pace on you?  Your mind fucking rebels.  But my goal was to run down third.  In my head, she was third and I told myself to remember her race number, if she came in third and I was fourth (not how it went down, but whatevs), I would remember this moment where I let it go and I’d have to face that.

I couldn’t get my legs to speed up enough yet to match her pace, but I put a big freakin’ bullseye on her back and kept her in my sights and tried to find another gear I could maintain.  I don’t really remember much of the first two miles except sticking to her like glue, reeling her in, and then finally at the last water stop, I passed her.  Decisively.  And I ran for my life for about a quarter of a mile until I realized she wasn’t trying to pass me back.

The last half mile, I was running about the same pace as a guy who was breathing about as heavy as I was.  More random race thoughts: if someone just heard our soundtrack, they would think we were having very vigorous sex.  I saw the end, found another gear to kick and pass one more person right near the finish, and I crossed the line feeling strong and happy.

Run: 29:21 for 3 miles, 12/29 AG.

jacks1

Team Tri – Zliten atop the podium because he kicked some serious ass and had a 6 minute PR.

Total time: 1:26:33.  6/29 AG.

Let’s talk about outcome goals first, since this year I’m really trying to figure out how to start placing in my age group (or at least finishing closer to the top).  Cycling really pays off.  You wouldn’t normally put together an 8th, a 4th, and a 12th and get a 6th… unless that 4th is on the bike.  I beat girlfriend that I passed on the run by over 2 minutes.  I needed 1.5 minutes (which would have been possible, if I had a real banner day) to move into 5th.  I needed 5 more minutes to move into 4th and almost 8 more to move into 3rd.  I don’t have that yet – but considering my first Jack’s Generic Sprint was 1:40-something, it’s not to say I can’t keep improving and get there.  But on August 7th 2016, ranking almost top 20% of my age group, top 15% of my gender, and alllllmost top 33% overall is a pretty good place to start to trying to chase down a podium.

In terms of process – I swam better than expected, faltered a little on the end of the bike but still did pretty well, and took some rough feeling legs through a fairly strong run for me, especially at this point in training, and my transitions were solid.

You can’t ask for much more six weeks away from a long offseason.  I now have six solid weeks of training ahead of me, wherein the weather should transition at some point from scortching to almost pleasant, before my next race.  It’s an Olympic.  The times from last year are pretty fast, so I don’t love my chances at getting on the podium, but after seeing how it affected both the outcome of my run and my self talk during it, I think I’ll continue with the goal to run down third even if I’m actually running down, like, eighth.

jacks5

Also, can we talk about how I look slightly less ridiculous in wet spandex at this point in time?  I’ve still got some work to do, but this picture summarizes how I feel about progress.

Shattering plates and chasing down third.

I’m in a state of OVERWHELM right now.  I’m simultaneously juggling 4 milestones at work without any help anymore, plus an extra pet project, plus trying to wrap up this Personal Trainer thing and pass the test, plus I’ve got about 3000000 other things I want to work on and learn as personal projects, plus getting ready for vacation, plus social commitments, plus, OH RIGHT, I’m training for a half ironman about 10 hours a week.  And probably some other shit I’ve forgotten.

Jul18-1

#ifeellikedis

There are a lot of plates spinning, and some of them are inevitably going to drop.  I’m ok with this.  You can’t produce games for as many years as I have without just expecting for a certain amount of breakage.  However, there is a lot more than normal going on in a lot more areas than I normally have to focus on.  Some of the plates are going to shatter and I’ll have to pick up the pieces later.  My goal is to make it the least important ones, and the easiest ones to glue together.

So, I race Sunday.  It’s a sprint, admist a larger training block for a longer race, so it’s a B race at best, probably B-.  Right now, I’m beat down and tired, but I’ve got a slightly lighter training load than normal from now until Sunday, so hopefully that will make me springy (or at least less draggy) again.  I have some of my best workouts when I think I’m too tired to even THINK about going fast, so there is the possibility for that to work in my favor.

I kind of raced Lake Pflugerville where I normally am at for this race (fresh off time off, springy, wide-eyed).  Now I’m about 6-ish weeks into training and feeling both more competent but also more fatigued.

Jun17-2

Splat.  Not quite here but we’ll see what the next few days deal me.

How I’m getting ready:

  • Today: off. studying. sleep.
  • Friday: 3 mile easy run with strides.  packet pickup. sleep.
  • Saturday: 3750m swim.  lunch and games with parents. sleep.

Saturday is not my traditional race prep, but I don’t think a long swim the day before a race (with a 500m swim) is going to kill me.  It’s the second to last swim challenge, so if it’s a bad idea, I’ll just not do it again.

Saturday’s nutrition plan is some sort of breakfast (muffin, bar, shake, something), snack after swimming (probably something similar to breakfast), a lean steak or chicken with veggies, salad, and bread, and then a turkey sandwich and fruit for dinner.

Sunday, I’ll probably stick with my belvitas + nut butter, caff chews, and I’m BRINGING A DISPOSABLE water bottle with me so I can stay hydrated while I wait 1 hour and 22 minutes after transition closing for my wave (the last one of the day) to start.  Since my shoes are pretty new, I’d like to get a warmup run on the trail this time.

Jun22-1

I’m actually rather excited to see another sunrise over expensive bikes.

Swim Goals:

I want to seed myself where I expect to finish in my wave (about 5th) instead of close to last like I usually do because I’m spacing out.  Once I get in the water, I want to hurt myself just a little.  I’m missing that top swim speed because I’ve just been working on getting back into it, and that is what it is, but I’d like to see if I can pull out just a little more than I did at Lake Pflugerville Tri.

Bike Goals:

If I were smart, I’d be quoting power numbers and cadence and specific strategy.  I’m not.  I want to ride my bike hard, I want to stay in aero, I want to pass people, and not give an inch.  I want to hit 20 mph average.  If I’m in the right mindset, feeling good, have the right legs… I might could do that.  I want to come off the bike in 4th or better.  I want to ride aggressively and stay in the moment and think “this is where I’m suffering right now” and I’ll get to the run when I get to the run.

Run Goals:

My goal on the run is simply to run down 3rd.  Now, this is kind of a stupid goal for a few different reasons.  It’s outcome based, not process based.  If a bunch of fast people show up, I have NO chance at succeeding.  I am probably not going to know what place I’m in besides a vague idea of how many bikes are in.  However, it’s MY dumb goal and it’s time to try something new.  I’m going to fly off the bike and move my feet as fast as I can with form as proper as possible.  I want to run like everyone has a target on their back and reel everyone in one by one.  And if I see someone with my age group on their calf pass me, I’m going to try go with them and try to pass them back.  Why not, right? Three miles is short.  Maybe I can do it.

Pfluger15

Goal – try to look at least this happy at the finish.

Race day nutrition plan:

I’m really going to try to push more nutrition than normal me here and try a few new things.

  • Belvita with almond butter around 5am ~200 calories
  • Caff chews slowly from about 6:30-8am ~160 calories
  • Pop an electrolyte cap with my disposable water bottle around 8am.
  • Skratch or gu on the bike, 1 caff gel as soon as I’m on the bike and going ~170 cal
  • Potential second gel at the end of the bike or start of the run ~100 cal
  • Skratch or gu in a handheld on the run ~70 calories

My head may be a little scattered right now, but I’m hoping I’ll get it together by Sunday morning.  I think I have a chance to do really well.  It’s always scary fun to put yourself on the line to be tested, and I think it’s about time to see how employing some different training and racing strategies are working out.

The mystery of the quickly evaporating weekend.

It’s really time for vacation, folks.  My last one got a little interrupted and the last half was kinda ruined with crappy work news, so I just decided that I’m going to remove facebook (and maybe twitter) from my phone during our Colorado trip.  I don’t even want the temptation.  I’m pretty sure I’ll have more interesting things to look at than the millionth political update about Bill Clinton’s love of balloons while hanging out in pretty places.

I’ll still have my Instagram and Pokemon GO.  I’m not going 1991 or anything, just wanting to keep my reality in a bubble for a while.

Aug2-1

Wandering to pretty places on the bike helps. 

But yes, it’s time.  I’m feeling that sweet, sweet burnout with a huge side of wanderlust.  I may have stayed up a little a lot too late Sunday because I needed another weekend day.  It couldn’t possibly have been time to start another one of these week things when I’d just barely finished my to do list around 10:30pm.  I need another weekend day now that I’ve started training, or a little less ambition on the life front.  One of the two.  Sadly, I foresee neither.

Dissecting the issue of the quickly evaporating weekend is tough, because it actually was a pretty perfect one from start to *almost* finish.  Saturday morning, we woke up, and joined about 100 of our closest friends at Bicycle Sport Shop to ride 60+ miles around Austin and collect cards from every BSS store to form a poker hand.

The ride was absolutely the most fun on a bike I’ve had in a while until about mile 55 with the heat and the tireds.  The thing I wanted to do most with every little beat of my heart is just get to the fucking finish already, but with a group, it’s about pacing, patience, and a dash of not falling off your bike into traffic.  Considering my previous longest outdoor ride in nine months since Kerrville was 22 miles a few weeks ago (and my two longest indoor rides were 3 hours and 1.5 hours), I’m going to call finishing 64 miles in under 5 hours and feeling pretty much *just fine* for most of it a huge win.

Aug2-2

From our first stop at the new store, 13 miles into the day.

The best part?  I’ve been dreaming of the next time I get to take a long ride like that, and what routes I can go play bikes on for 60, 70, 100 miles.  I also know that given another month and a half, it won’t be so deathly hot (one of our temperature readings was 112 at some point – probably a little inflated, like a car sitting in the sun reads a little hot, but not too far off from the feels like at the end…), and I can go ride my bike all day and it will be awesome.  This is a good place to be.

After the ride, we pretty much just vegged on the couch and ate all the food.  I did laundry and stretched a little, but I forgot the rule about long workout Saturdays – they take up the whole day.  Not due to the actual workouts, but the fact that you’re so incredibly zonked after.

Then, Sunday.  It started so promising.  I went to bed early (for a Saturday) and my eyes just opened at 9am feeling rested.  I finished my book, painted my toenails, plucked my brows, started with finally processing and editing the fish pictures from vacation.  Then, once Zliten got up, it became a day of happy things for me, as we ate mongolian grill for lunch, hit the wah pah lazy river for an hour, and then rode bikes all over our hood to do errands and go terrorize some pokemans.

May31-5

My summer happy place.

Then somehow it was 6pm.  And I hadn’t batch cooked yet.  And I had a LOT of batch cooking to do.  Fuuuuuu!  I like cooking and all, but it took about 4 hours total of prep and cooking and cooling to make ham, cheddar, and broccoli breakfast oatmeal muffins (yes, they are as weird and amazing as they sound), a giant pan of meat and veggie lasagna, and a slightly less giant but still large pan of lightened up chicken cordon bleu rice casserole (which is also as weird and wonderful as it sounds).  I didn’t even get to the potato leek soup but I did get to real life leekspin, and sing the song, so it wasn’t a total loss.

I was able to get my vacation photos done and uploaded during the cooking process too, but once I finished, it was 10pm, I felt like I didn’t get any time to relax, so I poured a glass of wine.

Unfortunately, somehow this lead to us talking work, business, our future, and watching weight loss stories on You Tube at 3am instead of sleeping like we should have.    This is a good lesson for me.  I may be megamaniacal and can get through the to do list no matter what if that’s what it takes, but fucked if I’m not going to rebel after it’s done and self destruct, ruining the next day.

If I go into business with myself as the boss someday, I will need to set up some strict rules with myself.  Not about being productive, though I’m sure I’ll have to monitor that too.  I’ll also have to keep myself from being TOO productive.  I know there would be a huge temptation to work 24/7 when I have the freedom, the flexibility, and my livelihood on the line solely based on how much I hustle.  I’ll need weekly to do lists not just to be productive but to save me from myself.

It’s probably a good lesson to learn about myself when the only thing I’ve sacrificed a little sleep and will have to scramble to reswizzle this week’s workouts while still keeping the rest element to the latter part of the week.  Duly noted, subconscious.

And, since you’ve made it this far into my tale of woe and enlightenment, I’ll try wrap up the details quickly and move on.

Training:

Aug2-4

If I didn’t take a bike selfie, training didn’t actually occur.  This is my theory.

Last week was week 2 of the second training block.  Focus was mostly pushing that 10+ hours per week volume, lots of bike volume specifically, and figuring out where my edges are.  I broke on Wednesday (my legs were not my own after two hard workouts) and had to lighten up the mid-week a little, I ditched a 4 mile run and took my weekday brick easy instead of speedy.  However, I got a lot of butt-in-saddle time, I even rode all 3 of my bikes, and there’s plenty of time to get that run fitness back, right?

  • Monday: weights + 1 hour trainer workout (40 mins of alternating huge resistance and high cadence, oof)
  • Tuesday: 1500m pool swim (just continuous), 6 mile treadmill long run (which I actually cooked pretty hard)
  • Wednesday: 1500m pool swim with toys (pull, kick, paddles, fins, fulcrum), home weights
  • Thursday: easy 30 min trainer on TT, easy 2 mile run
  • Friday: off
  • Saturday: El Diablo Poker Ride – 64 miles in about 4:45 on Evilbike.
  • Sunday: 5.5 mile recovery ride on the cruisers.

This week is one of those split recovery weeks, so somewhere about Wednesday afternoon things will start to get pretty chill around here resting up for the race this weekend.

  • Monday: off
  • Tuesday: 5 mile run, endurance cycle
  • Wednesday: weights, and either the recovery ride, brick taken a little easier than normal, or some other non-killer riding
  • Thursday: off
  • Friday: 3 mile run, home weights
  • Saturday: 3750m swim (the swim challenge… not necessarily my normal race prep)
  • Sunday: RACE! 500m swim, 12 mile bike, 3 mile run.

Food:

Aug2-3

Normally, this is junk food.  On the bike, it’s wonderful energy that got me through the middle miles of my 5 hour ride without being cyborg boob milk.

I tracked well, I ate well, I maintained -1000 calorie balance for 6 days out of the week (Mon-Sat).  Then Sunday happened and I totally failed to track and drank too much booze.  I completely erased my debt of -1000 that day.  That’s the bad news.  The good news is that even with that failure, I had a weekly debt of -5800.  That doesn’t suck.

I did much better with my 5 fruit and veggies goal, I hit it all the weekdays (and even ate more than normal during the weekend, baby steps).  At this point, I think these are pretty good weekly goals, so I’ll stick with them. Five fruits and veggies a day.  As close to -1000 deficit as I can stand while training.  Eat mostly home food, since I stressed myself out cooking all the foods, I may as well benefit from it.

Next week, I will have a lot of leftovers and I hopefully should not have to cook at all.  I’m going to have to pull out the easier recipes for a while after this week.  I’m thinking one thing from scratch as a more interesting meal per week instead of a bunch of things.

My weight has been holding at 183 (on mean white scale) average for 2 weeks, but I still think it’s progress.  Two weeks ago I skipped a few days of weighing because I felt like my weight was up.  Last week I hit every day between 181-184.  My body fat has also come down about 1% in the last week.  This feels like that period of time where I stabilize and then drop a little more soon (after this week, because TOM).  I’m ready for the 170s, bring ’em on!  I start feeling like I’m looking good and then I’ll see myself in a non-flattering photo or video and go, YEP, I look better but there’s still some work to do.  That’s ok.  I’m doing the work.  The payoff will come.

Life:

Aug2-5

Just, y’know, hanging out with a giant watermelon popsicle.  As you do.

Let’s just say it was the best of times, and the worst of times.  I also noticed I didn’t make a goals list last week, so I just tried to do errrrrrrrything.  Also noted.  I’ll try not to do that again.

Things I accomplished last week of note:

  • Took two practice tests for the Personal Trainer stuff.  Found out I remember everything else besides the actual anatomy part (shoulder and hips are HARD, yo).
  • Finally gave myself a pedicure and painted my toenails.  Fun fact: I’ve never had one in a salon.  For some reason, feels like a weird thing to pay for.  I haven’t touched them since May, so it was totally time.
  • Did more girly stuff and plucked my brows.  After seeing this picture from last week, it needed to happen.
  • Yet MORE girly stuff – bought some new jeans for Colorado (I won’t be wearing jeans here until October/November, probably…).  Ladies, can we just agree that low rise skinny jeans are the worst and boycott them?  They just don’t look good on anyone except models.  Boot cut mid rise for life.
  • Like I mentioned… finally uploaded my diving and snorkeling pictures.  Had some flashbacks about how horribly hung over and angry I was that day (snorkeling was one day after we found out about the layoffs).  However, I got some really nice shots both days, so it was worth it!
  • Bought my new Hoka Cliftons.  Come on 3s, you have to be so much better than the 2s.  I’m excited to get some miles in them on the treadmill to see if I need to return them or not.
  • Gaming!  We said bon voyage to a friend that’s moving and welcomed another person into our little group.  Sunrise, sunset.

This week, here’s my list:

  • More practice tests and scheduling our actual exam sometime before vacation.
  • Booking December vacation.  I don’t want to lose the perfect condo on the right day…
  • Progress on my super secret plan long term plan for world domination through exploring basic marketing principles.
  • Clean out the leezard’s cage area and get her a new light.
  • Get good sleep and prioritize recovery chill vibes to inspire excellent racing on Sunday!

And on that last kinda sounds-like-Bill-and-Ted’s-excellent-adventure bullet point?  I’m out.  Be excellent to each other.

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