Adjusted Reality

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

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Losing the blues.

I’m done with the Ironman blues.  Hello from the other side!

Finally this week I came out of the fog.  I remember what it was like to be doing all that training, but it doesn’t feel wrong to *not* do it.  I still get to ride my bike.  We hit the pool once and that made me a happy fishie.  I laced up my hokas this morning for their intended purpose, and it wasn’t far and it wasn’t fast and it was kinda hot but it felt good.  I’m going to try to keep it to 5 hours a week, give or take, but I think both my body and brain are ready to be a super casual recreational triathlete.

It’s a good thing too, because I signed up for a race!

We do this one every year.  Last year I was about 3 months into offseason, I just bought my new bike that week, and I was just a minute and a half off my PR and my second best showing ever.  This year… I’m going to go in again with no expectations and see what I can do.  Go play triathlon hard that morning.  Maybe not even with a watch. All hippie-like without data (but I like looking at it later so maybe not).

So, this week I start with the swim/bike/run – yes all 3 of them in one week.  Here’s the plan.  It’s super detailed.

  • Monday – ran 2.68 miles
  • Tuesday – ride TT bikes at the Circuit of the Americas track for ~2 hours
  • Wednesday – ride bikes with the BSS crew
  • Thursday – probably be dead from all the exertion plus I have gaming so *priorities*
  • Friday – swimming, maybe in the lake
  • Saturday – short brick at Lake Pflugerville (probably 10-15 miles on the TT bike + once around the lake)
  • Sunday – go die somewhere because obviously I’ll be worn the eff out

After these two weeks I may just hang my TT bike and hokas back up for a while again, or I may continue to play triathlon at this low level for the summer.  I haven’t decided yet.  I should probably lift some heavy things soon (like at least my own bodyweight) so we’ll see how I want to prioritize everything.

Last week I was about 2 for 3.  I actually did 4 things (3 bikes, 1 swim).  I got 10k steps on my fitbit every day (technically minus Saturday, because it counted steps for a 2 hour bike ride, and I only really *walked* 7k but details…).  I did not wake up and do stuff because a) my back really wasn’t ready and b) I realized waking up in the morning and going cold to do some stretching without a warmup was probably not the finest idea ever.

I assure you that the second panel did not turn into the third, although I have threatened before.

My adventures in nutrition can be summarized thusly – I did really well all week.  Then I went and rode bikes for 2 hours kinda hard on Saturday and hosted a party with lots of food so I ate and drank a lot.  Then I resumed normality on Sunday and here we are.

This week’s tally:

  • Weight: 187.4 (-1.6) lbs
  • Avg cal per day: 1732 (+17) calories
  • Avg deficit per day: -838 (+35) calories
  • Macros: 56 (+2)g fat, 164 (-12)g carbs, 93 (+3)g protein, 23 (+1)g fiber

So, besides a little extra fat (still within the acceptable range), everything is going the right way regardless.

Last week’s goals:

Continue with Week one goals.  Track and maintain a deficit.  Water.  Try to keep the alcohol consumption to reasonable levels. – Check.  Saturday was a little out of hand but in the grand scheme of the week it all normalized.

Fruits and veggies. – Check.  I went back and could count at least 5 fruits and veggies every day.  Thursday was pushing it a *little* bit including celery from the wings we split but if you’re counting 5 average per day over the whole week?  Nailed it.

Protein.  – Better, but not quite 100g.  I went up to 93g from 90.  When I eat more, this is effortless.  With smaller calorie counts, this takes some planning and perhaps a snack with protein because I’m just not making it some days.

This week’s goals:

Continue with previous goals.  Track and maintain a deficit.  Water.  Try to keep the alcohol consumption to reasonable levels.  Five fruits and veggies per day.  This is a reminder to not regress.

Protein.  I need to watch this carefully.  On nights where I’m having some adult beverages I should skew towards things that are carb-light, and have quality protein and fiber instead to make my macros.

The tally.  Now that my appetite is back to mortal levels and I’m used to not having a food orgy every day, it’s time to START working on my diet quality (the word of this season is baby steps).  Not doing anything this week, except trying to make good choices.  Next Monday, I’ll add up my DQ score and see where it’s at in comparison to where I was a few years ago.

I did some things besides swim/bike/run/eat!  #offseason is glorious.

It’s so weird.  During periods of heavy training, I’m like, what the heck do I fill my life with on the weekends if it’s not either riding bikes for 6 hours or running 20 miles and then laying exhausted on the couch watching Netflix?  Just laying on the couch watching Netflix sounds rather dull without the bikes to tire me out first.

Then, I remember how awesome it is to have some spare mental and physical energy on the weekends.  It’s the worst when you’re recovering because you feel tired without the fun and endorphins, but then once that breaks… HALLELUJAH!

Here are the things I did this weekend:

  • Had two glasses of wine on Friday because I had calories left and I could.
  • Rode my bike with friends for 2 hours.
  • Went out to lunch.
  • Actually died on the couch for a while watching all the 2017 IMTexas videos to try to catch ourselves in them.
  • Picked up the house and prepped for the party.
  • Hosted 11 people and had a fantastic time.
  • Read a few chapters in the Big Yellow Book and finish section 1/3 (and some in my fiction book as well).
  • Did laundry and actually put it away the same day.
  • Cooked a BUNCH of batch meals – curry turkey with brown basamati rice and veggies, shepard’s pie, chili.
  • Went for a walk.
  • Watched a movie.
  • Painted some minis.

…and I was still in bed early enough Sunday night to wake up and run this morning and I feel refreshed and happy instead of overwhelmed.  Glorious!

My goals were:

Find a non-fiction book. – Check.  However, I had just started the new Argonauts book and I’m into it so I’m waiting until I finish it (certainly this week) to start reading How to Win Friends and Influence People (in the Digital Age) – figured I’d start with a(n updated version of a) classic.

Find office chairs.  Check.  600 bucks later, we both have seats we’re happy with that we can sit in for a while.  They’re worth it.  I sat in it to paint for about 2 hours and I didn’t want to die like I do in any other non-couch chair in the house.

Host people without stressing out. Check.  We spent maybe 2 hours cleaning and prepping simply because we effed up with the timing and didn’t schedule this on a cleaning service week, so next time should be even simpler.  There was plenty of food and drink without me going overboard.  We all had a blast playing games.  This will happen again soon.

Life goals, super check.  This week has a few more extra curricular activities, so I am picking one thing that will be a time commitment (Sunday), and the rest should be low hanging fruit.

Find a doctor and schedule a check up.  I have no idea why I’m putting this off.  Actually, yes I do.  This is definitely the year to get my blood drawn and I probably need to recover my account info for the login and the UHC website is confusing and blah blah blah.  Get over yourself and DO EITTT, woman.

Dance dance.  While the next two weeks I’ll probably err on the side of spending my energy doing triathlon stuff, I purchased a DDR pad a few weeks ago and I’d like to get it set up and working BEFORE I really want to use it (and get frustrated that I’m spending my play time getting it set up).

The Office, round 2.  Zliten thinks we can get at least through Step 3 this coming weekend in a few hours.  I’m cautiously optimistic.

And on that note, off to do all the things I can do with a brand new week!




October Recap, November Goals

Oh man, October was crazy!  Let’s get on with it…

1. Train smart.  Do your 5-6 runs per week and check the boxes.  Easy on the easy days.  Speedwork on the speedwork days.  Go into tempo days and focused long run days with a plan in mind and communicate that to Zliten ahead of time to not disrupt marital bliss.  If things start to fall apart, first drop back to easy, then drop mileage, then miss runs.  Missing runs = more bike, not buttsitting, unless the only option is buttsitting.

October was a great training month.  It was LOVELY not to race and know I don’t race for a month.  I missed a few miles either due to time constraints or body starting to show wear, but maintaining almost 40 miles two weeks in a row + a 32 and a 28… very happy.  October was my highest mileage month EVER at 123, and November isn’t going to be too shabby either.

2. No getting sucked into racing anything this month. Use the money and the time to plan for next year’s race schedule.  Keep adding to the list of ALL THE RACES and try to consider what my goals are before signing up for a bunch of races that I have to try and train around.

Check on the no racing, but I haven’t really had much time to work on next year’s race plan, except that I am really considering chasing some scary running goals early in the year, depending on how I feel about a month from now.

3. Eat what fitbit tells me to.  It’s actually pretty magical, fitbit tracks my steps/activity, and translates that into calories.  I set my weight loss goals to the “pretty hard” setting (-750 calories per day, losing 1.5 lbs per week), and it changes my food goals throughout the day depending on my activity.  It has more than once made me get off my ass so I can eat more.   So, that being said… the goal would be at this point to get back into the low 170s by the end of the month.  I’ll be more specific next month.

Check on generally eating what fitbit says to, but my weight doesn’t seem to be going down.  Low of 174.8 this month.

4.  Also track food quality as a secondary measurement.  While keeping calories in check is what makes me lose weight (and I will overeat whether you give me carrots or chocolate after running, I have talent), keeping that DQ score up will make me feel better.

I have not done well at this.  I have been skipping the apple for the fun size candy bar of the same calories.  I need to get back to this next month.

5.  Get the Halloween costume settled (almost there).  Sew the patch on the shirt.  Since you have to sew the patch on the shirt, also mend the items piling up on that table.

Halloween costume rocked, but I didn’t sew anything.  Hoping to fix that soon.

6. Probiotics and digestive enzymes for the rest of the month starting today.

Meh, about half the time.  I need to get back on at least the digestive enzymes (not sure that the probiotics are doing all that much for me).

7. Finish this book, start the next.

I suck at reading lately.  Next.

8. Stressing recovery.  Ice baths every week after 15+ miles.  Compression sox/sleeves the day before and after long runs if not during.  Stretching after weights sessions and after long run.  Shockies and foam rolling as necessary.

I have been rocking this.  If I can keep this up next month, I may get out of marathon training uninjured…

9.  Make progress on the story I’m supposed to be writing for our gaming session next month.   I’m going to run a game for the first time for people sometime soon and it’s scary!  I love telling stories for people in text, but I’m terrified (in a good way) of doing one interactively.

Nope.  Crazy life has been crazy.  Next.

10.  Write stuff on the blog that’s not a status report.  I’ve found lately that I’ve thought of nifty things to write about and by the time I get to do them, I squeeze them into these long posts and don’t give the thoughts the time the deserve.  I still feel like it’s important for me to catalogue my weeks of training and eating for posterity, but I also feel like maybe I should spend some more time refinding my writing voice.  I used to be a decent writer!

I did some of this, and I want to do more.  I’m liking doing the “status report” type posts two weeks at a time so I can write other stuff more often.  I hope to keep not sucking at this!

11.  Quarterly maintenance – nails, toes, and brows.  I’m getting scruffy and since I live in Texas, sandal season doesn’t end for another month or two.  On the upside, my nails are in lovely shape since I cut them all down to nubs for wetsuit ease a few weeks ago, so they’re mostly all the same size (minus the index… always the index).

Done!  My nails are already getting a little raggedy again, but that’s easy to fix.

12.  While I’m not confident I’ll actually settle on a theme for my blog this month (and who knows, maybe I’ll keep switching it around!), I want to update my pages, especially my RACE RESULTS page, I haven’t done that since tri season.

Total oops.

13. Make some sort of healthy pumpkin spice desert thing.  Tis the season.  If I make it at home I’ll be less tempted to eat the pumpkin everything out there in the world.

I made some pumpkin spice protein cookies and they were delicious!

Well, I didn’t do so great in October, but let’s see what I can do with November’s 30 days…

1. Keep up the awesome training momentum.  Hit the last high mileage week.  Taper well.  Recovery is key.

2. Eat the number of calories fitbit says to eat, and track diet quality.  Try to lay off the sweets and eat lots of nutritious foods.  If I can lose 1 lb per week, I can run this marathon close to 170, that would be nice.  Take my digestive enzymes.

3. Sew something.  Anything.

4. Finish the current book, start another.  This should be a done deal since I’m traveling.

5. Frame some of the art that’s sitting in the tube in the closet.

6. Go through my cold weather clothes and put away/give away the stuff I don’t like.  Hit up the thrift store and get some stuff I like better.

7. Writing: work on my savage worlds story, and write non-status report blog posts.

8. Get my hair trimmed/layers redid.  Cut Zliten’s hair, it’s a mess!

9. Swim at least once, I shouldn’t go two months without hitting the pool.

10.  Try to use up the food that’s already here instead of buying stuff.  My fridge and freezer are bursting with stuff and I keep going out and buying new stuff to cook.

11.  It’s almost vacation time!  Get together a list of stuff for Florida (restaurants, things to do, packing list, etc).

12.  Drink more water.  I’m not as good about this in the colder months, and if I forget about it too much, I get chapped lips.

13.  Between more work deadlines and family obligations, make sure to take enough time to relax and destress.  Don’t let shit get to ya, woman.

August Recap, September Goals

August was a rough month mentally and physically, but I’m here at the other end of it and hoping September will treat me a little better.  Let’s get on with this…

1. Jack’s Generic Triathlon – August 4th.  This one, I really want to push into the pain zone.  I want to break 18mph on an Olympic.  I want to break an hour on the run.  I want to sub-3.  I know I have this in my legs (as long as the right legs show up) if my brain will just shut up and let go.  Yeah, it’s going to be hot as balls and I’ll have to triathlon my ass off to get there, but I really want to push myself.

Great swim, great bike, broke on the run due to heat.  3:11.

2. All boxes green, or good reasons why.  I’ve got a great training plan with some pretty epic weeks with some more feats of strength to tackle this month.  This being said, monitor the body for utter and complete burnout and stay attentive as August will be three weeks of peak training unlike what I’ve done yet this year.

Training has been going great, minus last week’s stomach bug issues where I did what I could without risking getting sicker.  Other than that, I’ve been training as expected and doing the work without too many mental breakdown issues.

3. Obviously, I need to eat.  I need to eat more, and I need to eat clean.   The goal this month is a) 100% bite tracking – two m and ms get tracked as 2 m and ms, and count for -2 DQ as a sweet, and b) adhering to the 90/10 rule.  I should have less than 10% of my calories or DQ score as negative foods (booze, sweets, white bread, etc).  This will be calculated by week, so if I want to save it all up and fuck up on Saturday, I have to be an angel all week (my guess is that the total negative per week can be 17-20).

I never made it to 10%, but I stayed between 14-17% (when I wasn’t sick).  I’ll call that a win.  It’s really, really hard to stay at 10% calories from junk, but under 20% is no problem.

4.  Let’s see if this can nip that no-progress-0n-the-scale thing in the bud.  If I truly keep my food choices good, my calories will naturally be lower with more filling-ness, satiety, nutrients, etc.  Since 176-178 is still the norm, let’s keep 172-174 as my goal for end of August.

Thank you stomach flu – I’m hovering around 174-176 (with a low of 173.0) now even after reintroducing real food back to my diet.  Oddly enough though, I’m finding that weight loss has nothing to do with quality of food though – it’s simply the amount of calories.  I feel better and train better when I eat better, but I lose weight when I eat less.  Hrmph.

5.  Minimize spending as much as possible.  We still have some loose ends to tie up with all the crap that went sideways in July, and I haven’t really missed buying somewhat useless crap that I don’t really need.  I do have 75$ in amazon gift cards I saved from my birthday and Christmas to buy myself something over the summer, buy something for myself this month instead of letting them collect dust.

We didn’t do *quite* as good here as previous months, but we’re still trying to be conscious of not buying useless crap.  I did not spend my 75$ in frivoulous money (why is it so hard for me to online shop? :P), but we did order our wetsuits, so that has nothing to do with this goal at all but happy and noteworthy!

6. Now that we’ve got into our goal marathon in Dec by the skin of our teeth (thank you kind race director), we need to book that trip and get that all arranged.  I’m sooooo excited for this one and so is Zliten.

Everything is arranged but our accommodations for after the race in Key Largo.  We’re doing a condo instead of a hotel, so we’ve picked out about 10 that will work in the area we want. I’ve emailed our top choice and we’ll work our way down if it’s not available.

7.  Figure out general plan for next year.  How long is offseason, what is our first race of 2014, what are our goals in 2014, etc.

We’ve briefly discussed our general plan of attack for 2014, but nothing concrete.  This one will go into next month, and probably not make any decisions until Kerrville is done because my mindset right now is not in the right place to think about it (I’m thinking about some drastic changes but it’s probably because August was a rough month).

8.  Buy cabinet.  Finish workout room.  Clean out and organize kitchen.  This one is not going to go away until we do it.

No, no, and sort of (we cleaned out half the pantry).  Next month!

9.  Do some sewing OR gaming OR necklace making.  Up to me, but something hobby-ish or craft-ish must happen this month.  Gold star for 2 things.  Super gold star for all 3.

I gamed a decent amount (my game, Singstar, Disney Infinity, etc).  No sewing or crafting though so no gold stars.

10. Finish book.  Start next one.  Gold star for finishing the next one.

I finished book 4, finished book 5, and almost done with book 6!  Gold star for me!

11.  This is the maintenance shout out.  Continue stretching, icing, foam rolling.  Continue batch cooking.  Don’t wear the same shoes every day even if they are the most comfy.

Sort of.  Chiro said I didn’t really need to keep on it, so I’ve been icing and rolling as necessary.  I stretch twice a week so that’s good.  Batch cooking has happened some of the time but some weeks we haven’t done so good.  I’ve been working my way through my shoe closet, so there is that!

12.  Work stuff: log at least 5 hours of my game per week, and at least 2 hours of forum reading per week.  Now that (knock on wood) things seem to be settling into the normal crazy instead of crazy crazy, I want to try to get back into this habit.

I’ve been doing well at this!  I think I need this as a goal for a few months to be a habit though…

13.  Have one desert that is something that is my choice, that I pick out, and I pick when I want to eat it, not just because someone else ordered it or is offering me bites.

I bought it, but I have yet to consume it.  I was just so sugared out after a week of easily digestible foods, I’m waiting til it actually sounds good.

Ok, its September, let’s do this.  Two more weeks of training, two weeks of taper, and the big A race, Kerrville 70.3.  A deadline at work.  Lotsa birthdays.  At least I’m not going on vacation during this time this year!

1. Shake off all the cobwebs in my brain.  Focus on the next two weeks of training, getting solid work done, and then let it go and taper and don’t get tempted to squeeze more in.  As of Sept 14, the hay is in the barn, and wherever I am, I am (and wherever that is, it’s WAY better off than I was going into BSLT in June).

2. Race Kerrville the way it deserves to be raced.  Rock the swim and the bike with the new abilities you have gained this year, and draw strength of will from your running past and the longer runs you have completed in August and will in September.  Find your edge and keep going until you fall off.  Persevere.  Your body can keep going on that run as long as your brain can.  Kerrville is the race where I get comfy in the pain cave and either end up at the finish line or the med tent.

3. Eat good food.  Eat enough to fuel the training, but not any more.  Realize that taper the second two weeks of the month means less calories needed.  Make good choices, but allow some times to go out to eat or eat cake pops and stuff.  Pie in the sky: weigh 169.something before Kerrville.  Realistic: maintain 173-176.  Do something between that.  Also, don’t stress too much about food this month beyond making sure the calories are in line – trying to get bad calories down to 10% made me a bitchy bitch.

4. Buy myself something with those 75$ gift certs so Zliten stops telling me useful things I can use them on.  Try not to buy a bunch of junk otherwise.

5.  Clean out rest of pantry.  Gold star if we go through and reorganize the tupperware section so we can fit all of it into the cabinet instead of it spilling out onto the counter.

6. Continue working on 2014 plan for races.  Nothing needs to be decided this month, but work on getting ideas.

7. Finish book.  Start another.

8.  Make a new music playlist on the zune or 3.  Marathon training is coming up, which means lots of quality hours with the zune, unlike now, when it’s a treat the few hours a week I get to listen to the same playlist I’ve been using for 6 months.  That will get old if I don’t change it up.

9. I’m trying out probiotics and digestive enzymes on the recommendation of some research I’ve been doing.  My most recent “cleanse” (stomach flu) coupled with the fact that it’s one possible reason I might be holding onto some weight, and the fact that the vitamin store had a buy one get one half off sale makes me feel like I don’t have much to lose.  Keep on these for the 15 day supply you have, and if it’s awesome, go get more.  If it makes me ill, stop it.

10.  Lots of sleep.  Lots of relaxing.  If something is stressful, avoid if at all possible. I have no race in October so I can go be a spaz then if I have the energy to do so with marathon training.

11.  Gaming!  Gaming is high quality relaxing feet up type activity.  Let’s make some more progress in my game, play some Disney Infinity, etc etc.

12.  Sometime before the end of the month, pull all the summer shirts/tech tees I haven’t worn lately and box them up or donate them (if I love but they don’t fit, box them up, if I just don’t love, send them onto someone who will love them).  Also, since I’ve lost about 15 lbs this year (yeah yeah yeah YEAH!), try on some of the stuff I have boxed up to see if I have gained more wardrobe!

13.  Find a day that I can justify the calories and eat the damn desert I got in August. 🙂


Jack’s Generic Tri + Week 30

Jack’s Generic Intermediate Distance Tri:

2013-08-04 06.39.44

While I’ve loved the TX Tri series the last two years, I think I’m going to have to cut the ties next year.  It was a cool, fun goal to finish 6 triathlons in a season, but I really don’t need the motivation to finish that many (this year, we were/are signed up for TEN).  Also, at first, I thought it pushed me to do some races that are outside my comfort zone, and that’s cool and all, but I’ve decided that there’s outside your comfort zone, and there’s shit you really just don’t want to do.

Racing an Olympic distance tri on August 4th in balls hot weather starting after 8am?  Put this on the latter list after last weekend.  It’s not that it was all bad, but the memory of that run will haunt my dreams for a long, long time.


  • Shakeout bike that AM, easy 35 min spin trying out our new speedfill aero bottles
  • Food the day before: pasta w/meat sauce + salad + bread, and a random smattering of snacks like brie and pita later.
  • Spent time with my parents, and had a mostly relaxing day and evening
  • Got TONS of sleep, at least 7 hours where I didn’t budge.  Felt super rested in the AM
  • Thought I was getting sick, but ended up just being allergies from them burning shit in Mexico.  Stupid people burning shit, but thank the dear fluffy lord of triathlon that it wasn’t actual illness!
  • Had an oatmega bar, and about half of a starbucks mocha.  Tummy was a little off but settled quickly.
  • Got there early-ish (6:15?), but not early enough to get a prime spot (it was totally fine though, Pflug transitions are great).
  • Got a warmup run and legs felt decent, hung out with Zliten and B and B’s mom and then got a warmup swim.
  • Ate my fruit punch sports beans and then it was time to get this show on the road (I was in wave 4).


This was going to be a different experience.  First of all, they started all 89 ladies in one wave, in a tiny narrow corral, and it was a beach run start.  The horn went off, I ended up towards the middle/back and inside, and we ran towards the water and the ladies in front of me kinda stopped and walked.  Fuck this, it’s a race, I thought, and I high-kneed my way around them until I got into deep enough water to dive in and start swimming.  Then, I ran into more ladies swimming slowly, and I shoved and kicked and fought my way to a patch of clear water just to find my goggles weren’t sealed super well and I had a decent amount of water in the left one.

The word on my brain at this point was: SHITSHOW.  I was not happy at the beginning of that swim, it was pretty high-combat.  On the way back to the beach I finally got my stride, but was dreading that stupid beach run.  It was about 100m across a pebbly, rocky beach, and I decided to brave it barefoot (that was me putting on my big girl panties about my princess feet).  I swam until I touched rocks with my hands, got up and out and started the run.  Oddly enough, it wasn’t that bad!  I went fast enough to pass people, but people passed me too.  I ran into the water, stepped on a rock, said “OW FUCK” loud enough I think some people giggled, and I dived in again for lap 2.

This one was great.  I was regularly passing caps in waves before me, the water had thinned out because the sprint waves hadn’t started yet, and I just generally felt calm, peaceful, productive, and fast in the water.  I think I came out wearing some weeds but otherwise emerged pretty happy with my effort.  Definitely better than expected, and ABSOLUTELY better than I expected about 100m in.

Swim Time: 23:47 for 1000m with 100m beach run.


My sandals were nowhere to be found, so this was another moment of Quix’s big girl panties on display here, as I ran to T1 just fine in bare feet.  Note to self – I’m much less tenderfooted during a race than I expect with the adrenaline going.  All went as expected, and it was REALLY REALLY nice to not have to worry about putting on the camelback.

T1 Time: 2:43 (10 seconds faster than Pflugerville – yay!)


Got out on the bike, had troubles clipping in like a noob, and found my bike in trainer gear (all the way hardest big and little) going up an incline.  Ooops.  Noob, noob, noob mistake.  After costing myself about a minute being dumb, I got going and drank and ate.  I looked at time of day and it was two minutes earlier than expected.  Splendid.  Legs felt good, I felt speedy without my camelback and my nice aero bottle, and though the zipp wheelie boys were blowing by me, I was passing people too.

Figured out early on my garmin was off again (it must not like tracking distance at Pflug), and just turned it back to HR and time of day screen and worked on ticking off the miles as quickly as possible.  I stayed in aero a LOT (the bottle helped), and climbed the modest hills pretty well, mostly, and I kept pretty close to my goal of 18mph.  I completed the first lap in about 42-ish mins and figured if I could hold on and do another 42-3 I’d hit an hour 25 which would blow my anticipated pace out of the water, and I usually get better on lap 2 so I started that one really excited.

Everything was going well and then… I hit a wall of wind on the south section of the course (the longest straightaway, of course).  It was BRUTAL.  There was enough wind to notice the first lap and have to fight a little harder, but it REALLY picked up on lap 2.  I kept losing time and losing time and then all of a sudden, I was coming in and it was later than I wanted.  I lost all that time I banked on the swim and more.  I had another noob moment dismounting my bike on the wrong side, but got it together quickly and over the line and into transition.

Bike Time: 1:31:06 (17.0 mph.  Not what I wanted, but pretty decent considering the wind…)


Went as expected.  Last time it wasn’t hot enough to need a handheld though, and this time it was, so I dealt with that.

T2 time: 1:29 (Pflug was 1:19 – so there’s that 10 seconds I gained not tinkering with the camelback here – tinkering with my handheld.  So, total t1 and t2 time – exactly the same… hah!)


On the bike, as I kept losing seconds, I reminded myself I still had a shot at a sub-3, but I would have to push the run as hard as I could.  That wind dissapated, the clouds burned off, and it was just me vs THAT RUN.  The feels like was already in the 90s, and this course has ZERO shade.  I had yet to see either Zliten or B, but on the first stretch, Brian blew right past me.  In a different universe, I would have tried to hang on and go with him, but he’s definitely a faster runner than I any day of the week and it was early, so I kept clicking along.

I stayed on time of day because I knew it was hot enough that pace would piss me off.  My handheld melted, I saw Zliten, I passed Zliten, I hung on, and kept clipping away around 11 min miles.  Something happened though, once I passed the finish line for the second lap, I broke.  It was so FUCKING HOT and I wasn’t quite doing what I needed to do to hit my sub 3 (I needed to be more like 10:20s), and I could barely keep pace, let alone speed it up.  I told myself to get it together, but it didn’t work.  I then decided that if I didn’t feel better by the bridge, I was going to walk.

Dumbest decision ever, because OF COURSE I wasn’t going to feel better, so I “broke the seal”.  I walked.  And from there, all I could manage was powerwalking to a point, then running.  Drinking at aide stations until I felt nauseous, running until I felt overwhelmed and light headed.  Powerwalking, then running.  I couldn’t find a sustainable pace at all.  Zliten passed me again clipping along sloooooowly, and I may have given up and just walked the damn thing in except I decided that he wasn’t going to finish before me.  So I’d run to catch him, then walk.  Run, then walk.

The last aide station had ICE (glorious ice) and I drank a bunch and it lowered my core temp enough to give me some oomph, I walked until my tummy settled, and then I ran the last half-ish mile.  I blew by Zliten, I passed other people, and kept going, and suddenly there was the finish line.

Run: 1:12:20 (12:03 pace – UGH JUST UGH)

Total Time: 3:11:28

Post race:

Once I was through it and they gave me water and I turned around and Zliten was there right behind me and I said “lake” and he said “med tent” (just for ice) and we did those respective things.  We sat in the lake with B and his mom, we ate pizza, and we kinda just ranted about the heat.  I won the swim, Zliten won the bike, B won the run (as normal).  B finished about 6 mins before me, and I finished 6 mins before Zliten.

I wish I had more on that run.  61 mins for the 5.8 miles I tracked is TOTALLY doable for me in a race situation, and that would have gotten me in at 3 hours.  66 mins which should be a WALK IN THE PARK for me would have beat B.  Instead, I just gave up and thank goodness Zliten was there to be my rabbit or I might have done worse.

However, it’s about letting go and moving on.  At Tri Rock in a month, I’ll have lots more experience hanging tough running in the August heat, and there IS actually some shade on that course, so we’ll see.  I have a 3:25 to beat, which shouldn’t be a problem.


I felt off this week.  Not injured, not sick, but just generally off.  What must be allergies, because it hasn’t gotten better or worse, gave me a scratchy throat, hoarse voice, post nasal drip, and at time general achiness and ickiness to the point I almost went home from work sick on Friday.  I’m still dealing with it, but now that I know its not going to smack me down with the plague hammer, I’m ok with it.  I was TERRIFIED I was going to come down with something that would make me DNS last weekend but I didn’t, so all is well and training can continue as normal.  Hooray!

I skipped Thursday’s run in feels like 100 temps because I didn’t want to exacerbate the issue (if there was an issue), and never made it up so I could rest.  I’m pretty sure that it didn’t hurt me in the grand sceme of things, but man, it sucked turning that box red (workout completely skipped) when I had just put up a post talking about how excited I was that I was turning all the boxes in my spreadsheet green as planned.  Oh well.

The only real highlight of the week was a good hot tempo run on Tuesday, and getting in our 45 miles after work on the trainer on Tuesday watching Green Lantern.  The rest was just time in the pool or saddle.  No breakthroughs (nor should there be the week of a race).

Monday: off
Tuesday: Run: Tempo Lunch Run at the Center… 3.1 mi 00:32 10:24 pace, Bike: Evening Trainer + Green Hornet 45.02 mi 01:51 24.3mph pace
Wednesday: Swim: Laps 1500 m 00:32
Thursday: off (skipped run)
Friday: off
Saturday: Bike: Quick Shakeout 12.31 mi 00:35 21.1mph pace
Sunday: Swim: 1000m Swim w/100m beach run 1000 m 00:24 38:18 pace, Bike: 2 Laps Around Pfluger – (Jack… 25.9 mi 01:31 17.1mph pace, Run: 2 Loops Around Lake PF – Jack… 6 mi 01:12 12:03 pace

Total time: About 6.5 hours total (7 planned)

After last week’s respite, this week goes back up to crazypants hours, and Saturday will cap it off with another “feat of strength”.  Stay tuned for details on that…


This week, it really became apparent to me that:

  1. Without careful scrutiny – I can really blow it.  Sunday’s 1360 calorie sandwich shows that – I didn’t look at the calorie counts first.  Since I raced an Olympic it wasn’t completely tragic (especially because I had half for lunch and half for dinner), but if I ate that on a normal day, I would have been PISSED at ingesting that much calories and fat, because, while it was good, it wasn’t THAT good.
  2. I always say that I eat 90 healthy and 10 other – when I actually quantify that in DQ (diet quality) points… not so much.  Definitely more than 10% “other” lately, and that’s not working for me, so I need to be careful.
  3. I’ve also forgotten that some things besides booze, sweets, and refined grains are negative DQ points (fatty meat, high-cal sauces, fried foods, chips, etc).
  4. I want to buy a new bike next year and I do not want to be that girl with snazzy new wheels that obviously should have worked on the “engine” first.  Because, yeah, I do not need to spend 2-3k$ when I have TONS of “free speed” from losing fat.

This initiates the new and improved weight loss motivation – called the “buy a bike” clause.  If I say it on the internet, I’ll be accountable, right?  I’m not buying a new bike until I am 150-something lbs.  When people offer me crap, I have a reason to say no, it’s now, “no thanks, I want to buy a bike”.  Over the holidays?  No fruitcake for me, I want to buy a bike.  Now, this doesn’t mean I won’t indulge when I really want to, because I don’t believe in that at all.  However, the random stuff that floats past my nose that I eat just because it’s there or offered to me?  Do I want that more than I want a bike?  Hell no.  So, let’s get on with this buying a bike shit, right?

How I’m going to do this and not crash and burn my training: getting back to really and truly 90/10 eating.  Specifically – track every morsel that goes in my mouth (I’ve gotten lax about, oh, I had two m and ms, that’s not worth tracking).  Add up the DQ score.  The negative points need to be one tenth of the positive points (I know the math isn’t quite exactly 90/10, but it’s close enough to keep track of at a glance).  Starting next week I’ll track positive and negative DQ points instead of just overall.

For example, I’m looking at about 180 DQ points of good food next week.  That means I can have about 18 points of negative stuff.  Considering that’s only 9 drinks or 8 drinks and one desert or 7 drinks, a desert, and some fried food, I had best spend those points wisely and not on crap I don’t want or need.

Here’s last week’s not-s0-90/10-ness:

Monday: 1493 calories, 27 DQ
Tuesday: 1832 calories, 31 DQ
Wednesday: 1493 calories, 27 DQ
Thursday: 1443 calories, 26 DQ
Friday: 1887 calories, 23 DQ
Saturday: 1590 calories, 12 DQ
Sunday: 3246 calories, -6 DQ

Averages: 1854 calories, 20 DQ (for example, this week would have had 164 good DQ points, and 24 bad = 14.6% bad points – and this is only because I counted carb-loading points on Saturday as neither negative nor positive, otherwise it would have been a lot worse).

Weight: Low – 177.2, High – 182.2.  Both up.  No bueno.

All one can do is move forward, with renewed purpose and motivation, and that’s what I’m doing.

Not much else to say this week, it was either resting, racing, or being terrified I was getting sick.

Week 27 and 28: Hungry Robots and Real Clothes

Not having a working laptop is both terrible and wonderful.  Terrible, because I am going to type up a really quick post here and not spend much time on it because I can’t do it at home, and I really wanted to play my game this weekend (probably ONLY because I couldn’t, but still).  Wonderful, because I have unplugged a little bit since it’s annoying to do all that much from my tablet internet-wise, and I played a lot of other people’s games this weekend.

However, I’ve got two weeks to recap, so let’s git.


Week 27 was the pre-week kick off for training block #2 this year.  It was more of a gentle return to routine – I didn’t want to hit it 100% hard after the two extremes of BSLT racing, and then a full week completely off, doing no more cardio than thrift shopping.  I did a little bit of biking on the trainer, which felt good, especially because we have our new resistance controls that make adjustment ON THE BIKE possible (I know, should have spent that money 2 years ago, but better late than never).  I did (really light – less than half of 1 rep max) weights once.  I ran a pretty solid 5 mile run in clouds and drizzles that felt magical.  I swam really fast.  It’s amazing what happens when your body is completely rested.

I even think being that rested helped me race better at Couples.  I was able to keep my brain positive, and it wasn’t worn out from suffering through a lot of hard workouts, it was like, ok, we can do this.  My FITNESS was pretty low but my brain was into it.

Monday: off
Tuesday: Bike: Trainer Hill Workout + Starga… 22 mi 01:00
Wednesday: Weights: gym weights + stretching 00:45, Swim: Pool laps 1650 m 00:33
Thursday: Run: Neighborhood Loops 5 mi 00:56
Friday: off
Saturday: Bike: easy spin + quicksilver 16 mi 00:45
Sunday: Swim: Couples Tri Swim 800 m 00:19, Bike: Couples Tri Bike 11.2 mi 00:42, Couples Tri Run 3.1 mi 00:34

5.5 hours total, 49 miles biked, 8 miles ran, 2450m swam, 1 weights session

Week 28 was about 80% of insan-o levels.  Two weights sessions, slowly working my way back from barbie weights to real heavy things.  On the bike, we did a 45 miler trainer (aiming to start the process of a long bike ride most weeks so a 56 mile tour de Kerrville is not such a shock to the system), and two short, speedy 10 milers for double bricks the next day (followed by a 1 mile run).  Looking at last year’s bike mileage, I did not ride nearly enough, inside or outside, so I’m hoping to change that with quite a few 100 mile+ weeks and lots of 45+ days.

I got a little bit of my run mojo back.  The double brick 1 milers conjured up some speed I didn’t know I had – the first was 9 minutes flat, the second was 8:40.  I’m not entirely sure I’ve run an 8:40 mile at any time this year, but certainly not after 20 miles of hard riding and a pretty fast first mile.  The next day, I ran 7 – it was hot, my legs were tired, and I had to run slower than I wanted to keep my heart rate from blowing up, but I got through it, and it was a good easy run, staying in zone 2.  After the epic swim on Saturday, I did a 5k in the 90 degree mid-day heat in no shade, and while I didn’t track HR, I felt pretty strong even in the heat and on tired legs.

Swam twice this week, meant to swim 3 times but this was the one session I missed.  Oh well.  The weekday swim was uneventful, but the weekend swim at Pflugerville was definitely of note – it was my first Iron distance swim (2.45 miles to be exact – so .05 more) and I did it in under 2 hours!  This was 10 laps around the Lake Pflugerville buoys.  The first four laps were uneventful.  Lap 5 and 6 were a little soul sucking, because it was that no mans land where I’m swimming further than normal, but I still have a lot to go.  I got a little brain foggy then, lost my form, got sloooow, and got a little down.

Then, lap 7, I picked it up because “I only had an Olympic swim to go”.  I build speed again, had better form, and rounded the last buoy of lap 9 and headed out to shore.  I waited a bit for Zliten, I chilled, and then when I saw him go for another lap, I got my garmin out of my waterproof safe swimmer – I still had .3 of a mile to go!  D’oh!  I made quick work of that one and ended up with 2.45 miles in 1:58.  While I still certainly need to get better at that, pretty impressed that I’m 22 mins under the Ironman cutoff (you have to complete your swim in 2 hours and 20 mins) without any training!

Monday: Weights: Weights + Stretch 00:45
Tuesday: Bike: Trainer + Star Wars Episode V… 45 mi 02:01
Wednesday: Bike: Double Brick: Bike 19.18 mi 40min, Run: Double Brick: Run 2 mi 17:40min, Weights: The ush… 01:00, Swim: Gym laps 1080 m 00:22
Thursday: Slow + Steady + Strong 7 mi 01:22
Friday: off
Saturday: Swim: Iron Distance at Lake Pf 3950 m 01:58, Sweaty 5k at Lake Pf 3.1 mi 36min
Sunday: off

9 hours total, 65 miles biked, 12 miles ran, 5000m swam, 2 weights sessions


July is frustrating, but I did it to myself.  June’s 3 races of carb-loading (and probably subsequent body abuse) and a little less attention to detail in this area, and then a week off + less quality food while family was in town = back to what seems to be a setpoint for me at 177-178.  See, I now KNOW that it takes my body 3-4 weeks to respond to what I’m doing to it once it gets in a state of confusion (read: hungry ALL THE TIME), and it just takes patience.  Still doesn’t make it any better when I’m going to bed hungry and the scale doesn’t change.

Again, disclaimer for the people who may be happening upon this without a lot of background – don’t try this at home.  My body is not your body.  For most people, 90% healthy food consumed to their appetite works to effortlessly bring them down to a healthy, optimal weight.  Not me.  Once I get the weight loss going, it seems to be that way, but once I get stuck, I really, really have to get to the point where I’m angry-hungry for a few weeks until the lbs start rolling off, and then I can resume being a human for a while.

I tried giving up grains, I tried low carb, I tried low salt (probably the worst I’ve felt in a long time), I’ve tried super protein… all these things make me feel is heavy and gross and weak and angry and tired.  I worked with a nutritionist for a year who I love for introducing me to the concept of quality food (organics, etc), but she cycled through all these types of things and I ended up putting weight ON.  My body seems to thrive on a super healthy vegetarian’s diet who eats meat once a day (or twice in smaller quantities).  Chicken and a salad shuts my brain off and my tummy feels heavy all day.  A salad with a small bit of chicken, beans, cheese, and veggies rolled up in a whole grain wrap with more veggies on the side?  Brain up, awake, and body feels light and happy.

Even with this diatribe, my calorie counts are not super low for the amount of activity.  This week though, I’ll be training full capacity and attempting to not increase calories at all (of course, there is a level of hunger that is stupid, and I’ll go eat something healthy to shut my stomach up, and I will not be skimping on calories before, during, and after workouts), and keep that DQ score through the roof.  Hopefully this is the jump start needed to get on with my 15 lbs to Kerrville initiative.

Week 27:

Monday: 1887 calories, 16 DQ
Tuesday: 1654 calories, 29 DQ
Wednesday: 1442 calories, 26 DQ
Thursday: 2107 calories, 26 DQ
Friday: 1622 calories, 25 DQ
Saturday: oops.  Guessing about 1700 calories, ~15 DQ
Sunday: oops.  Guessing about 2500 calories, ~3 DQ

Averages: 1844 calories, 20 DQ

Weight: Low – 177.4, High – 179.4

Week 28:

Monday: 1685 calories, 28 DQ
Tuesday: 1781 calories, 28 DQ
Wednesday: 1890 calories, 25 DQ
Thursday: 2281 calories, 18 DQ
Friday: 1724 calories, 22 DQ
Saturday: 2336 calories, 4 DQ
Sunday: 1440 calories, 25 DQ

Averages: 1876 calories, 21.5 DQ

Weight: Low – 175.8, High – 179.2

The low weight is moving, but the bounce back is about the same.  Bugger.  This week, I’ll add 2 more hours of training, and attempt to keep the calories around 1800 average.  Stay tuned!

Other stuff:

We went out, with people, to a brew pub and had dinner and beers.  I wore clothes – a dress even – and makeup and such.  It was a lot of fun to catch up with some of our friends.  I need to remember that we need some outside social interaction and not just drink on the patio (or at the very least, invite friends over to drink on the patio) and wear real clothes on a Saturday night (not pajamas or spandex) every once in a while.

As I eluded to above, my laptop keyboard is toast.  The shift key on the left won’t unstick, so it’s stuck on.  This sounds less tragic than it is, as I can’t make numbers, periods, or anything, so I’ve just been using my tablet while it gets fixed.  It IS under warranty through American Express (yay), so it shouldn’t cost anything, but I’m waiting right now for the approval and the parts to come in.  We took it first to Best Buy as we weren’t sure if we got the insurance on it (we didn’t), and they said they’d charge a 35$ non refundable fee before it even gets looked at, and they had to ship it off to another state, and it would be minimum 2-3 weeks.  We then went to the shop down the street, they said it would be ~50$ in labor, part at cost, and it would take an hour or two once they had the part.  We will be going with the local shop. 🙂

If you are into that type of thing (big giant robot smash crazy alien monsters) – GO SEE PACIFIC RIM.  It was a lot of fun, thoroughly mesmerizing, and made me smile on the edge of my seat the whole time.  First movie in a long long long time I’ve seen on opening weekend and it was totally worth it.

We did get to game not last Thursday, but the one before.  We took over a pirate ship and found ourselves 400+years in the past and snuck past creepy fish monsters chanting in an uber creepy basement. There was one super spooky part where our GM reached out and touched my arm to demonstrate something and it made me shriek and jump.  Fun stuff.

Other gaming related stuff – I’m really making progress getting further along in my own game.  I also spent a lot of the weekend playing Secret of Monkey Island (the Telltale Adventure Game).  It’s cute, it’s fun, it takes no reflexes, and it’s my kind of game right now.  I got through episode 2, 3, and most (I think) of 4 until I started getting crabby and realized I had played for 9 hours already.  Next on the docket is the Telltale Walking Dead games, which are supposed to be AWESOME but much less fun and cute.  We’ll see when I feel like I’m ready for those.  This gaming was at the cost of getting any sewing done, but I’m going to haul out my table to the front room this week so I can sew and TV (at least listen) at the same time.

I’m pretty sure everyone has seen this, but if you haven’t… well… lots of this.  The Oatmeal – Why I Run.

And with that, I’m out.

Question: what’s the last movie you saw in the theatre?

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