Monday, August 6, 2007

What I Did This Weekend - By Phoenix

Well, sports fans, it was an eventful and mostly great steamy weekend here in the 'lou. I'll start from the very beginning - for its a very good place to start . . .

TI Swim Clinic - Friday

This three hours was packed with information breakthroughs, video taped stroke analysis, blue lips, and drills, not necessarily in that order. This was a special, abridged workshop put on for a small group of "Sally's" triathletes. How lucky am I to be part of that group? "Hap" Gentry is the local coach that teaches Total Immersion and he definitely helped make some things click for me. I'm still not swimming 1:20/100m but I noticed that, while my time on my long swim Saturday stayed the same or improved slightly (by about 10sec/100m), I didn't feel like I was working as hard to maintain the speed. In fact, I felt like I could go a lot faster but everytime I tried to speed up, my form started to fall apart - so more practice doing it right and I think I'll be able to really improve in the water - and speed up considerably. So that, my friends, is all good.

Celebrity Something Meet Up

I got to meet Little Miss Runner Pants!! I tell you what, she is somethin' else - which many of you who've met her already know. She's quick to laugh, totally together, and so darn pretty she looked absolutely adorable for the obligatory pre-run photo, even at seven a.m. I almost wanted to back out of the pic - there I was with my post-swim goggle eyes looking like a drowned rat and she was all cute and stuff. You'll have to check out her sight for the pics - my stepdaughter (Princess) has absconded with our digital (sounds kind of like the dog ate my homework) so I am without proof positive.

After the photo-op, we took off for our run. In my excitement, I started a little quick and, according to my friendly HR Monitor, I needed to slow down (NAZI) so I kept slowing down and LMRP kept slowing down with me. We managed to make it up the monster hill and, while I was gasping, she seemed to be trucking right along. At that point, however, she announced that she needed to go slower and hurried me on my way. Now, the reason she gave for splitting off on her own was that I was "going too fast". I have a suspicion, however, that it had more to do with my mention, earlier in the run, that I was going to lose my shirt and run with just my sports bra (as I've been known to do in steamy conditions such as those that morning) and she really didn't want to run next to half naked me. I can't really blame her for that one. My suspicions were confirmed when she LAPPED ME. I was coming around for my second lap, approaching the evil, long hill that we parted on before - and there she was! Ahead of me - running up the hill like it was cake. We ran side by side for awhile and she said she was turning around at the top of the hill - now by this time, shirt had been dropped off at the car, I was shamelessly running with nearly nothing, dripping sweat and probably stinking to high heaven - lest you imagine a baywatchesque Phoenix trotting through the park, let me assure you, Pamela Anderson I Am Not. Again, who can blame her for wanting to run on her own. So, she ran down, I ran on and we met up again at the end of my second lap, back at the cars. She looked fresh as a daisy, I looked like I'd been dipped in sweat. And she still agreed to go to Starbuck's with me! Even though she doesn't drink coffee. This is one altruistic lady, lemme tell ya.

We had a lovely time at Starbucks chatting and gossiping about all of you (wouldn't you just love to know what we said?) And, even though she's famous, she's completely down to earth and easy to talk to. Thanks, Alej, for sharing your morning with me!


I finally was able to get in a 40 mile ride on Sunday. It seems like each time I try to go for 40, I fall short. And, truth be told, yesterday's ride topped out at 39.8, but I'm calling it good. I got started late, and it was a hot one - though it didn't seem to effect me much on the bike. The run, however, was a different story. A three mile run off the bike was the plan. It was a good plan. If you disregard the fact that it was high noon already when I started and about 94 degrees - with a 98 degree heat index. Oh, and the trail is concrete, with no (almost no) shade. Hell of a plan. The first 1.5 miles were pretty good - I was a little tired and feeling the heat, but I had taken 3 Endurolytes before I started and topped off with some water so I wasn't worried. I should've been, but I wasn't. I jogged 10 min. easy then did four sets of intervals - 30 sec. race pace, 1:00 rest - and that got me to the half way point feeling pretty decent but hot. At the turn around I jogged 5 min. and started back on the intervals. By interval two, I was walking the rest portion. When I was done with that, my plan was to jog to the finish. I was really starting to feel wonky, though, so I decided I'd jog slow for 5 min. then walk it in to cool down. After min. 3, I noticed that I wasn't really sweating anymore. I knew this was not really good, but for some ungodly reason, I was determined to jog the last 2 min. So I did. That was stupid. When I stopped, I was feeling really lightheaded and I had 1/4 of a mile to go. Part of my brain wanted to all out panic, but I knew that would make things much worse, so I just started talking myself through that last little stretch: "Wow, that breeze feels really good. Man, that's great, that's really cooling." "Doing good, lookin' good, you can just slow down a little and just keep putting one foot in front of the other. Awesome,that's just great, just a few more of those and you'll be at the car where there's cold water." It was kind of scary. At the back of my mind was this tiny little voice "What if I pass out? Am I gonna puke? What if I have heat stroke?" on and on - I just didn't let it get louder than a whisper. That last 1/4 mile seemed to take forever but I got back to the car, got some fluids in and turned on the AC. Man, you just can't mess with the heat like that. I should know better but I can handle the heat so much better than last summer, I guess I just got a little cocky. Funny thing is, even with the walking at the end, I averaged 11:30 miles for the three miles. So, I was going at a pretty decent clip even though I felt like I was crawling. I won't be pulling that stunt again anytime soon.

So, it was an action packed weekend full of adventures and lessons learned - some the hard way, some not. Up next: Two weeks of peak and then taper. Lake St. Louis is looming in the distance and I'm going to try to grab this race by the short hairs and . . . um . . . finish. Be careful out there!


Jane said...

You probably did 40 miles b/c those odometer things aren't perfectly accurate. What a weekend! By the way, this person
recently moved to St Louis (Wash U is in st Louis, right), so you might want to contact her. She is a major triathlete (multi-ironmans) but really humble about it. She used to live in Houston.

a.maria said...

wazzup! i will have pics posted tonight, fyi. and it was awesome to meet you!

(holy crap you bricked on sunday.!)

Phoenix said...

More like

Awesome to meet you too! Hope you had a good trip back.

21stCenturyMom said...

That makes me feel much better about tossing my run on Saturday. Head can kill. Glad you made it back.

Vickie said...

Sounds like you got the full workout treatment this weekend. The heat has been really bad lately, hasn't it? (Much as I remember it when I was in St. Louis 2 yrs ago, btw) I would guess that after a 40 mile bike ride in that kind of heat that intervals might not have been the run of choice for the day, but it was probably a good lesson learned anyway! And as long as you survived, it should be good practice for your Oly tri coming up. Just try to pace yourself in the race and not hurt yourself!

Bolder said...

AJ is da best.

really glad you got to meet her!