Friday, July 25, 2008

Ironman USA

Tricked ya! This is not a post about signing up for IMUSA. That topic has been covered quite beautifully by Shawnie, Deanna B and Kate. I will say that I LOVED my weekend in Lake Placid. The combo of the gorgeous location + being with my super-cool training buddies made for very good times (despite the ridiculous rain). I am very psyched about that race. My family might even be able to make it! (Cue the tears - I miss my family).

Instead....I'd like to talk about Trigirl blogs.

Okay - Annnn, Margo and Diane crack me up (when they blog...I'm talking to you, Di & Margo). Please check out Margo's picture of a shark with a laser beam. I don't really know what that means, but it makes me laugh.

Speaking of non-blogging bloggers.....we are waiting, Cyndi.....Ironman Brazil is old news, sister. :) The same goes for you, Cathy!

Shawnie wins the award for most consistent blogger. Every Monday (unless she is in.....say....Brazil), she updates her blog with an extremely funny post.

Debbie JO - great blog....keep up the posting, woman.

Favey is quite the picture poster - love that. I need to do that.

Kate O started out slowly (kinda like her early season training), but has totally hit her stride now. Both her blog and her training efforts are impressive.

I love to check in on the thought processes of Kate G, I don't get to catch up with her very often during training (perhaps because she is training for an Ironman - and I'm not).

Bethany is a great writer - although I'm guessing her law practice gets in the way of what she really loves....thinking about triathlons (and Bart, of course).

Allison - your blog is really interesting to look at - technological whiz that you are (not to mention kick-ass swimmer).

Jonah's blog is the original - thoughtful & interesting...just like her.

Kathleen - You are just an inspiration. Plain & simple. I have my fingers crossed for you and the set-up award plan. I like it.

Deanna B's blog contains my all-time favorite post....the one about "Believing." She describes the strides she has made with her swimming - and the belief in her own abilities that has come along in the process. I do re-read that one after a spazz race (don't call them "bad" - just spazzy) or flat workout. It always gives me a boost. Smooch to you!

As for Carm - I miss you & your writing.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I never expected...

that I would switch to the aquabike at Timberman, but that's what I did today.

After chatting with my brother, my sports doctor, my physical therapist, Rick (poor guy - he has listened to my whining for weeks) and the ever-sage Coach Blake, I have decided that it makes a lot of sense to let my foot heal properly.

After much begging and pouting (on my part), my PT reluctantly said it would be okay for me to run one mile on grass yesterday. So, after a morning bike ride at West Creek, I stopped at Bandy Field (near U of R) for a very brief run.

I was so excited to run. Until I actually ran.

I realized after 10 minutes that I was fooling myself. My foot definitely feels much, much better - but it still has some healing to do. You see, I am dealing with tendonitis on both sides of my foot. The peroneal tendonitis (on the outside of the foot) is a secondary injury caused by altering my gait to relieve the pain of my plantar fascitis.

So, it's best for me to rest.

In the meantime, I don't want to hear any complaining from those of you who can run. I promise you that you'll miss it when you can't do it.

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Blue Ridge - revisited

This recap of the weekend's ride will have to be brief as I need to get back to grading.

Anyway, I underestimated the difficulty of Saturday's ride. Since we rode almost 50 miles on the first Blue Ridge ride, I figured this ride (despite the fact that it was a different route) would be about equal in terms of effort.


The first 20 miles was a repeat of two other rides - a fairly long descent followed by a steady climb on the way back. I should've stopped with Shawn, Kate O and Derek to gather some nourishment from the wild blackberries. I definitely needed every calorie by the end of our ride.

After a brief stop, we headed out on the next part of the ride - a 30 miler (out and back). It did seem like we were doing a lot of descending, although there were some climbs mixed in. The road seemed to be in better condition than the first part of the ride, so I began to relax more on the downhills. If I had to hit the breaks, I tried to make it as brief as possible.

We regrouped at mile marker 38 for the long, slow climb home. A huge shout out to new Blue Ridge rider Lisa - she had to deal with a major cleat issue that made it impossible for her to clip out (hence - a wipe out). After that, eyewitness reports stated that her whole shoe separated from her cleat. Essentially, she had to ride the rest of the way almost one-legged.

And I thought my legs were tired!

For the first time in my brief cycling history, I actually found myself hoping for a downhill. Yes - I really was looking for a little help from gravity to get me back home. Despite my fatigue, my increasing comfort level with descents left me feeling kinda happy. I still don't bomb down the hills with the reckless abandon of...Karen...or Ed...or Liz, but it's a step for me. I do believe it was Coach Blake who told me that he learned to ride downhills from time spent on the Blue Ridge. As always, believe Coach B. He is right - darn him.

On a side note, Cyndi, Derek and I did spot some wildlife on our trip. We did not see any goats (sorry Shawn) or bears (sorry Fave), but we did see the craziest looking turkey. Those birds are not graceful. And in our kind & gentle way, we laughed our heads off at the sight of the spazz bird.

Apparently, Mother Nature didn't appreciate that - as we found ourselves parked right next to an active and aggressive bee hive. Both Kate O and Coach Ed were the victims of angry bees.

Moral of the story: Respect the hills...and the turkeys

Thursday, July 10, 2008


First, I really love reading the comments from you all. Thanks!

Today, I visited Jane, my physical therapist. She seemed like a very cool lady (and it's not just because she is a Red Sox fan, although that helps). She "casted" me for my new orthotics. They should provide some much-needed support to my arches - which should help alleviate some of the strain on my tendons.

Next, I met one of her assistants, a PT student from MCV. Her assistant also ran the Boston Marathon this spring, so we had lots to chat about. It turns out that she also helped another crazy Ironman get over some kind of knee injury. She asked me if I knew someone named Greg who had trained for IM New Zealand. I asked her if by Greg, she really meant: "He-who-wears-roach-costumes-and-sperm-helmets-but-was-still-very-fast." She was confused.

Anyway, I received an ultrasound treatment with cortisone cream as well as lots of stretching...and of course, ice.

Jane did a lot of manipulating of my foot - and seemed quite pleased that I did not have nearly as much pain as I had two weeks ago.

I do believe my paw is healing.


p.s Blake - December 7th is on the calendar.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Random update

After a very busy and challenging spring racing season, I am really enjoying my "quieter" summer training period. I am taking a much-needed break from running while keeping up a moderate level of swimming, cycling, strength training (and wine drinking).

And I find myself really, really enjoying every workout.

Don't get me wrong. I really loved my extended intense training period from December, 2006-May, 2008. But, I realize that it is equally as important to fit in "down" times. That doesn't mean that I sit around eating Doritos all day (but I do love Doritos).

But I also don't need to ride 100 miles or run 18 miles every weekend year-round.

So what are my goals right now?

The biggest goal is to heal my right foot completely. I have really pushed it beyond where it should be pushed. I finally realized that I don't need to walk around in pain every day. That actually isn't normal. So, after almost 3 weeks of complete rest from running, I am feeling a big difference. I'm looking forward to running again soon - but I do plan to limit my mileage.

In other words, I am probably not going to run the Richmond marathon. But, I won't rule it out. After all, I signed up for it last year at the last minute. I'm actually intrigued by the Richmond half-marathon. But, we'll see.

Another possibility is to stick to the shorter distances in the fall - lots of 5ks and 8ks.. and trail runs (are you reading this, Blake & Twila?). It will keep my fitness steady, but without some of the pounding of the long runs.

I plan to save my long run training for a different Lake Placid.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

"Do you see this....

very inflamed tendon popping out of the side of your foot?" asked the wise doctor to the triathlete-in-denial (that would be me).

"It's not supposed to look like that?" I countered.

"Not at all," Wise doctor answered, patiently.

Well, now I know why my right paw has been trying to get my attention. It seems that I have a nice little case of tendonitis. The tendon that runs down outside of my right leg and connects to the side of my foot is very unhappy with me (a.k.a the peroneal tendon). I must've aggravated it when I altered my running gait from months of trying to manage plantar fascitis.

Anyway, the good doctor took one look at my foot and pushed it in one place and asked, "Does it hurt right here?"

Oh yes.

He pointed out how my tendon actually stands out from the rest of my foot due to major inflammation.


What does this mean?

No running for awhile. He mentioned at the minimum I needed another 3 weeks of rest.

But, I can bike and swim as much as I'd like (although he did point out that I should not stand up while riding. In other words, I have permission to avoid Reed's Gap for one more trip to the Blue Ridge).

I'm going to be getting some new orthotics (my old ones aren't doing much good anymore). I'll get some PT as well. I am also on some mighty strong prescription anti-inflammatories.

And of course, lots of ice.

It's quite possible that I will be an aqua-biker at Timberman. We'll have to see how the paw heals.

In the meantime, see ya at the pool.