Lifetime Fitness Indoor Tri:
Just goes to show you how big/prestigious a race is has nothing on my excitement level. 3M and Austin halfs, huge, well supported races with stars and amazing runners? Sounds like a lovely training run with a few thousand of my bestest buddies. 49 people sign up to do a triathlon inside at a gym? OMFG I AM SO EXCITED LET ME AT IT ROAR!!!! *bouncy bouncy bounce*
So, I suppose it’s less than fair. I haven’t had an opportunity to really open up and RACE anything since November, when ye olde body was starting to fall apart. I have loved training and racing with Zliten this winter, but while running someone else’s pace and Dance Party USA to amuse/annoy/torture them and providing motivational support was a very worthwhile endeavor for both of us, I felt like a puppy that just got let off the leash for the first time in months. I felt all…
I haven’t trained a lot of speed. In any of the 3 disciplines. For running, I pretty much stopped speedwork once I decided to not do the marathon, and it had been a half-hearted attempt up until then. I am a killer hill cyclist, but when I get to a certain cadence, my feet just get confused. I’ve trained hills at least once a week all winter so evilbike doesn’t laugh at me next week when I start riding again, but I am no spin cycle speed demon. Swimming is probably the worst – again, I’ve trained about once a week so I don’t lose my base of ~1 mile, but it’s certainly not at any pace that I’m really pushing myself. So I was really going into this one, 7 days from ending my half marathon season, just seeing what I could do, and seeing if just mebbe I could place.
The week before I did very great race prep. I did heavy weights twice and barre class, ran a few miles outside, swam once for about 25 mins, and spun for about 25 mins total. The first attempt was, um, not so good. My ladybits did not so much like the spin bike seats without padding. I tried again Saturday with my nice sugoi padded bike shorts and was much more successful. That day I also did a 10 min shakeout run with my new shoes. My legs and lungs really just wanted to open up and I had to keep convincing myself today is not the day.
The day of we woke up around 7:30am. We signed up for the latest wave possible (9:20), and it was NICE not to have to set the alarm for 4am. We had a leisurely getting ready, and pulled up to this crazy mega gym about 30 mins early. This was about the size of a MALL. My gym would fit in it’s lobby. It had a restaurant and a waterslide. I am not even kidding.
So, we got our locker keys and I set up my “transition” and headed to the pool. Zliten and I were sharing a swim lane, so I got my swim cap and got in and took a few practice laps to warm up. It was really nice to be able to start a tri by watching the seconds count down, give each other a good luck kiss, and then take off swimming.
Let me interject with how this one worked, because it wasn’t a normal tri at all. Besides the fact that it was indoor, it was scored differently. You had 10 minutes to complete your swim, and they recorded your distance. You then had 10 minutes to change and get to the cycle studio. You had 30 minutes on a spin bike with a computer attached to track your distance. Then, you had 5 minutes to get to the treadmills, and 20 minutes to go as far as you possibly could on the ‘mill. Boom done! Then, they take the distances and rank them. There were 49 people participating, so the person that got the furthest swimming got a 49, and the person that went the least distance got a 1. Same with the bike and the swim. You add up those three number and you get a score and a ranking. AGs were not the norm, just M/F and under/over 40.
My goal for the swim was 20 laps. To do that, I would have to swim 100m every 2 minutes. I made the first one, I fell a little behind on the second 2 minutes, and I realized while I wanted to give it a good hard effort, I didn’t want to kill myself in the water (even though on this tri, it actually counted as 1/3 of the score). I also lost my swim cap which slowed me down a little during the process (while I was trying to keep it on, I pushed off less on the walls). When the 10 minute whistle went off I had just touched for lap 18, so that would have to do it. 450m in 10 mins.
EDIT: Zliten thinks that it was an olympic sized swimming pool, which is 50m each way. In which case I swam 900m in 10 mins. I’m not sure if that’s even humanly possible. I guess we’ll never know.
T1 was actually challenging – since you usually just rock a tri completely dripping and air dry, it was weird to have to wriggle wet body into dry clothes. I got to the studio with about 90 seconds to spare and adjusted the bike and got my music ready and took off when they said GO!
The bike was my least favorite part. I may have had a little swim cap snafu, but it was nothing on that stupid effing spin bike. First of all, I realized I forgot my water. They were nice enough to bring me one, but a screw cap water on the bike going as fast as possible didn’t work (but I was glad for it after). Then, they counted down and told everyone to stop and me going as fast as possible, I wasn’t paying attention to the fact that the only people stopping were the folks in the PREVIOUS wave (duh). That cost me at least 30 seconds, I had stopped and unstrapped my feet, d’oh!
So for the ride, I was trying to stay at 32 MPH. That sounds impressive, but because the computer was calibrated for a normal bike, and the spin bike wheels are WAY smaller, it certainly wasn’t that far. Partway through, I had a great song going and decided to try and push a little harder and build. Sadly, when I hit 37 MPH my feet flew out and I almost broke my ankle! I had started trying for 18 miles total. Then 16. I only got to 15.5 and was frankly a little pissed about it. I thought I could do better.
Then, to add insult to the fact I wasn’t happy, I looked over at Zliten’s and it read TWENTY TWO POINT FREAKING TWO. I have no idea how he pulled that off, but he’s certainly going to have to teach me…
I was sure I BOMBED the bike compared to my AG so I wanted to make it up on the run. I figured perhaps being pissed off at the bike might help me stomp the treaddy a little harder. My goal was at least 2.3, but I was thinking maybe I could tackle 2.5 if I really had it in me. I started at 6.0 (10s), then went to 6.5 (about 9:15s), and then 7.0, and kept it steady around there (about 8:35s). I tried to push it up closer to 7.5 and that was just more than I had in me that day, so I completed the first mile right around 9 minutes, and took it down to 6.0 to get my heart rate down a little, then ramped it back up to low 7s. I can do just about anything for 5 minutes, so at 15 mins elapsed I started really going for it. I ended at 8.5 (wicked fast) and with 2.33 miles complete (about an 8:35 overall pace).
I thought I might have had more in me, but I definitely felt the awesome/terrible 5k-wanna-hurl feeling so I used up most of my juice.
The funny thing is, I felt like I did pretty great in the run, I did fairly well in the swim, and sucked up the bike. Results came in yesterday. I placed FIRST by far in the bike in my AG, tied for 5th in the swim, and placed 6th on the run. The points were overall, so I got 34/49 points for the swim, 34/49 points for the bike, and 32/49 for the run, for 100 total points, and SECOND in my Age Group out of 14 people! Solidly second, the 1st place under 40 femme got 14 points more than me, and 3rd was 9 points under me. For my gender I placed 4th out of 23 people, and overall I got 15/49.
I’m pretty excited for these results, and feel sort of sheepish about how grumpy I was about my bike (GAH I PLACED FIRST I SUCK WAH WAH). It shows that even if I feel like I suck on the bike, I’m really a fairly balanced triathlete. It shows that I will give Zliten NO QUARTER on the bike this year. No slowing down on our long rides. Do you hear this? Significantly trouncing me has it’s consequences during future trainings… you think it’s all thumbs up now…
It also shows that if I can get through almost 2.5 miles at about an 8:30 pace after a hard swim and bike, I can suck it up and figure out how to run better 5ks this year. Maybe I need to learn how to break it up better mentally in my head, but there is just a despair point during 5ks, right around mile 1.5-2 when it’s too far from the finish to push into pukeworthy territory, and far enough in to feel really fatigued. If anyone has 5k pacing advice, I’d love to hear it. What do you do with that sucky middle mile to keep yourself going?
Anyhoo, this was an awesome event!! We would do them all the time if they were monthly, especially during tri off season! We’re trying to talk our gym into hosting one! BRING ON TRI SEASON!!!
You Never Know…
So, I can’t lie, I was feeling a little down late last week.
I may be making progress, but that stupid number on the scale being stupid is just… STUPID.
Also, I went through what I can only equate to somewhat similar to Charlotte’s metabolic reactions. I WANTED TO EAT EVERYTHING all week. I was craving healthy food too so it was definitely hunger and my body craving nutrients, but I could not get full and I ate a meal that would normally fill me up and was like, seconds please! And I mean that as in I could have eaten a whole ‘nother serving.
Also, the TIREDS. I slept 10.5 hours on Thursday night and Friday night (and I have been getting my normal 8, so it’s nothing I’m making up for). I wanted to do nothing but eat nutritious food and sleep. So much sleep and laying down my back is stiff for no good reason. I got over it in time to feel much better Saturday and awesome Sunday but still – so weird. I did so little cardio last week it felt super weird to be so fucking HANGRY. I guess it’s fairly normal after reading up on weight training/hunger on the interwebz so all I can do is make sure if I get all crazy like that again I just stuff my face with milk and broccoli and fish and stuff and get lots of sleep.
However, I’m glad my nutritionist inadvertently has helped my husband lose weight. Seriously. He’s down about ~7 lbs depending on the day from the first of the year and kinda lookin’ even hotter than normal, which is challenging because, I’m mean, look at this sexah beast.
It makes it all the more frustrating though that my body is not responding as well.
However, I just need to remember that:
a. This is going to be a long, twisted, and frustrating process, and consistent weight training is producing SOME sort of results, which is better than, oh, anything I’ve tried in 8 months at least.
b. Even though I feel like I deserve it by putting in all this work that’s really not done anything, I’m not going to get to my goal weight/size/fitness level tomorrow.
c. No matter what, I need to earn my right to run with weight training. I owe back taxes for really slacking on it for so many years.
Of course, I did NOT measure myself this week (I swear it’s on my to-do list), but I should really do that. So I can see some progress. At least for the last 3 days, I saw myself back in the 177’s again finally. The clothes I’m wearing today, a month ago, I would have been a little wary about belly/back bulge but they look pretty darn good.
It’s the little things. I need to get the measuring tape out so I have something tangible to see. Advice on 5k pacing or keeping the hangries at bay welcome below!