Week twenty-nine to thirty-seven. July 14-September 14, 2014 – I am ready for Maryland

It has been 8 weeks since my last blog post. Wow how time flies when you are having fun. So what have I been doing since my DNF you ask? Well I went to the Bahamas on a 14 day sailing trip (fun as hell),

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went to NYC for a triathlon (and it was a blast of a race),

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It’s all about the medal

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Leo and me

went back to the Bahamas for work, then I went to NJ for a wedding of my very good friend Shefalee (best time ever and even met a triathlete)

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The beautiful bride Shefalee and me

and have been training for Ironman Maryland.   The training has been hard since I have been traveling and my CDA training buddies (Joe, Leo and Kristin) are on the “I do not want to wake up early” mode. Seriously I do not blame them but I will say that they have been really good about at least meeting me for part of my bike and run. In addition to them trying to meet me, Joe sent me a very frank pep talk email where he basically told me that I needed to get my shit together on the bike if I wanted to finish IM Maryland. I had been pretty much riding alone and wasn’t making any progress so the last few weeks I have been riding with some other Aliens and that has actually been great. David, Efrain, Joaquin, Ernesto and Otto have pushed the hell out of me and in 3 weeks I went from an average speed of 14.5mph to 16.89mph. That is some serious improvement. Also for some reason my running has been great. I even ran a 7:40 mile on test day. I have never done that. I have also been in regular contact with coach Andy. Here are some of his messages.

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Until today he has been more confident   about me finishing than me. It feels good to finally agree with him.

I have also been working on getting my business off the ground. I had not been too organized in my accounting so one day I sat down and caught up. The bad news is that I had a lot of money out there. The good news is that I am on target to meet my goal for my first year. My goal was to make a certain amount and then have enough money in the bank to cover 3 months of the company expenses. I have the 3 months covered so now I just have to generate enough revenue to meet the amount. I am more than half way there and things are picking up so I am very happy about that.

The other project I have been up to is getting ready for the floor replacement. Total pain in the butt and I am going to have to move out. So I have been avoiding that like the plague. I cannot wait until that is done. I have scheduled the work after IM Maryland for obvious reasons.

Between all that I have been getting to know some IM Maryland athletes through Facebook. It is nice to know you are not alone in the fears that come with taking on such a challenge. It is also nice to know that there are people out there who are just as crazy and to find people who are just plain funny. One of the girls made up some temporary tattoos and I can’t wait to see people out on the course with them. It is our special group.

Ironman Maryland will not be the same as CDA; I saw so many teammates on the course. There is only one other team member racing IMMD so it will feel very lonely on the course. I am going to have to dig deep to keep moving forward. I am going to have to remember all the words that my teammates have said to me the last 2 months. They want this for me as much as I want it so I am going to think of them when the course gets tough. I am also going to think about my family that will be there to watch me. It is a long day for them as well and I certainly do not want to come up short. My Mom said tonight “I am not coming to any more races so you better finish”. Ok that is some kind of motivation.

Quote for the week is exactly right on. It’s funny when I go look for my quotes I always end up on different web pages and no matter what the right one just shows up. It is the quickest part of my blog.

“You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.”Margaret Thatcher

Week 26-28. June 23-July 14, 2014 -The journey continues

I went to Coeure d’Alene (CDA) to become an Ironman and I had all the confidence in the world that I would have done that but it was not meant to be. I have avoided blogging about my experience because I wanted to get to the point where my post would be a positive one. It has taken 3 weeks to get there and the reason for my delayed post. But I am there now so here it goes…………

I did the training and the hard work. I showed up, got my package and was ready to go. We did a quick run that first day and it felt great. The weather was perfect for a fast run. That was also the day I met Bear. He is an old friend of Andy’s and let me tell you what a great addition to the team. His attitude and humor was refreshing. Seriously do not now how I did not pee in my pants from laughing so hard on that run.

The next morning we got up for a swim. I knew the water was going to be cold so we had additional gear (neoprene cap and socks) that we needed to try out.  Here we are looking all goofy with all that extra stuff.

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Kristin and me

Really in Miami we do not need that sort of stuff. We all got ready and it was time to go in. I screamed that water was so cold but after a few minutes it felt great. Coach Andy had us swim in the direction of the race so we could get a feel of the current. We did that a few times and then we just hung out in the water just to get used to it. After we got out we went for a run. On the way back I remember seeing people just floating around with rafts and floaties and I thought, OMG these people are just swimming for enjoyment. We came to the conclusion they must be from CDA. But regardless it was funny to see.

That night we had a team meeting. Andy gave us the low down on what we should expect and what we needed to do. Then he asked Stephanie and I to stand up. I was like ok but wasn’t sure why. He proceeded to tell us that as a group of 18 we had lost the weight of two people (Steph and I) in our journey to CDA. That was quite astonishing really. I knew people were loosing weight but to loose 258 pounds as a group was remarkable. Leo lost the most with a whopping 40 pounds then Alan, Andy’s twin lost 35. He went down the line then asked whom we all thought lost the most for the girls. Yeah it was me with a loss of 27 pounds.

The next morning it was time for our pre-race brick. Back to the water we went. Some people were trying to figure out weather or not to wear the neoprene caps and socks. I was already decided but everyone was trying out different things. The only thing I tried was one sock over the wetsuit and one under. In the end everyone concluded that they were definitely wearing the cap and socks and I decided on under the wetsuit so that when the wetsuit strippers pulled my wetsuit off I could still run in my socks. It was going to be cold and I needed that protection.

So on to the bike we went. We were doing the first loop of the ride. As usual I got left behind while maneuvering through the city streets but Elizabeth slowed down and waited for me so I wouldn’t get lost. Once we got through the city the climbing started. I was freaking out. I knew I was going to have to come back down. The group stopped and waited for me and when I pulled up Derek yells “what you were doing 10 mph on the downhill.” I was like no 16. It was a pretty funny moment. Andy then told us where the special needs bags were going to be and we headed back for a short run. After the ride Bear tells me “you know you should just not use the breaks, it really just slows you down”. That humor just never stopped.

Later we went drove the rest of the bike course and it really did not seem all that bad so I was feeling pretty good about the whole thing. After the ride it was time to drop off the bikes and gear bags. I later met my family for dinner and went back to the hotel so that I could try and get some sleep.

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My wonderful family

When we got back to the room Steve showed me cards his nieces and nephews had made for me.  It was so awesome to see that.  Here is a picture of some of them.

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Mitch, Andrew, Becky

Race day started early. Alarm was set for 3:30am so I could eat breakfast, try to go to the bathroom and get to transition to check my bike and drop off my special needs bags. Steve put on the weather channel and they said it was going to be a great day with no wind. A soon as we got outside I was like why are the trees moving so much. So much for no wind. Steve dropped me off as close as he could to transition. I dropped of my bags, filled my tires with air and headed out to look for my teammates. At this point I was pretty calm since there was nothing else I could do. The work was done, the bike was ready and all my gear was waiting for me. It was time to just go for it. Most of our team ended up meeting up and we were just what I thought hanging out but really we all individually were freaking out. But I was glad to be surrounded by my training buddies.

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(Front) Eduardo, Joe, Me, Leo, Kristin, (Back) Ashley, Robert, Liz

The swim start was 6:45 and as time approached we all started getting ready. It was time to put the wetsuits on and drop off the morning clothes bag. I wanted to go to the bathroom and the lines were crazy so I went into transition thinking that would be better. It was not. So I just put on my wetsuit and headed out. I called Steve to find out where he was. He was nowhere near me and that is when I totally flipped out. I didn’t think he was going to find me and I had my phone that I needed to give to him. It all worked out in the end and we ran into each other on a very crowded sidewalk.

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We said our good byes, he wished me luck and I headed to the swim start where I ran into some of my teammates. Andy had told us that when we got to this part of our journey we would look out and feel a calm. I never believed him but he was right. I was calm. It was seriously weird to feel that way after just freaking out but in reality there was nothing left to do but swim 2.4 miles, ride 112 miles and run 26.2 miles. I was ready.

We then got in the water for a warm up and to get used to the cold water and well to pee like a crazy person. So we hung out for a bit and then they started calling out for us to get in line. It was a self-seed start and I was going out at the back of the 1:15 group since I thought I would finish at 1:30. The time had come to start my race. Two minutes into the swim my goggles were filling up with water so I headed for the first kayak to get that sorted. I did not panic I just fixed the problem and I took off. The lake was clear but it was wavy. It was hard to sight but I just decided it wasn’t going to bother me. I finished the first loop and the cheering from the crowd was amazing. I took it all in and went in for the second loop. I did great on the swim. 1:34 just 4 minutes more than my goal. As I headed to my gear bag I saw my brother Robert so I went and got a hug and then headed to transition to change.

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As I got into the tent I saw Liz and it was so nice to see a teammate. The time went by so fast and before I knew it I was running out on the bike. That is when I saw my sister Elena, Steve and my Mom. Seeing them made all the training worthwhile.

I took off on the bike and managed that first loop without too much problem. Then I got to the big climbing portion and that is when I realized holy crap it is windy. I powered through it when all of a sudden I hear Elizabeth say great job on the swim. I was shocked that she was behind me but we pedaled along until we got to the top. I told her have fun on the way down and I’ll see you on the run. You see she loves the down hills and I hate them. But to my complete surprise the down hills were almost as tough as the climbs. The wind was so strong that I had to use my easiest gear to go down. I kept pedaling then my stomach started cramping. I was like let me stop and just finally go to the bathroom. I stopped 3 times and nothing. At this point I was like well let me make sure I just make the cut off times.

I got to mile 56 and was so happy I did not get stopped. Then the volunteers said you have 1 hour to get back so I went like a crazy woman and did manage to get back before the cut off. Then came the big climbs. I was tired and somewhere along the route I stopped just to get some bacon and take my salt tabs. The bike tech support guy stopped to see if I was ok. I said yep just needed some food. He then told me I had 30 minutes to get to the turn around. I had no idea how far that was so I asked him. He thought it was about 20 miles and told me just to keep moving. By this point the wind was stronger and then I started to do the math. There was no way I would make it but I decided that just maybe they would change the cutoff since on the way back it would be faster with the wind on our backs. I started passing people and I thought ok I could do this. I’m not sure at what point but Andy was on his way back and he yelled “Espe you got this just keep pedaling”. I already knew I wasn’t going to make it but I kept going and sure enough when I approached mile 92 (yes mile 92-20 miles short), the turn around, they stopped me and asked me for my timing chip. My smart ass self said “if you want it you need to get it. I am not giving it to you” so they did come take it from my leg. As we headed back to transition there were still plenty of people behind me and as I looked out of the truck I thought well at least I did not walk like they are.

When I got back I dropped my bike off and wondered how the hell am I going to find Steve? Well he and Robert found me thank god. I was so disappointed but they were great. They acted like I had actually finished. I cried but they told me don’t worry you are an ironman in our eyes. All I remember is saying, “ I am not doing the same thing I did with my Landscape architecture test. ” They laughed and said yeah you will”.   Here is what Robert posted–Check out that water.  Still as can be which means the wind finally let up a little too late:

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We then went to look for my mom, Elena, Miriam and Skip. We found them and they were all like its ok just sign up for another one. Seriously my family is crazier than me. Elena, as usual, had a bottle of champagne, which we proceeded to drink.

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At this point everyone was texting my family to find out where I was so I had to post that I had not finished. It was a hard post but the support I received was overwhelming. I was no way near ready to hear it but they just kept coming. I actually stopped going on Facebook because it was just way too hard.  Here are the messages and I just want all of you to know that even though I could not handle it at the time these messages helped me get to the point to sign up for another ironman.  Your support was amazing and I hope you know that.

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While we where on the streets we saw Andy run by and he came by to give me a hug. He had already heard I did not make the cutoff. After we saw him I was like I need to eat so we headed to a restaurant that was by the finish line ate and proceeded to drink myself silly. I stayed there until all my teammates passed by and then told Steve I need to get out of here. I cannot listen to Mike Reilly say “so and so you are an ironman” anymore. So we left.

Looking back at it now I cannot believe I actually was able to stay there that long but I am glad I did. Not only did I see all my teammates finish I was also able to see Leo propose to his wife. He had told us early on in the training that he wanted to do something special for his wife. They never really got engaged and they had just gone to the courthouse to get married and since she was so supportive of his training he wanted to do this. I loved the idea but didn’t think I would be there to see it. It was the high light of my DNF.

The next day proved to be much tougher. Everyone was posting on Facebook and it was hard to take. In addition, Leo, Joe Kristin and I have an ongoing text feed and they were texting like crazy. Since I was in no condition to deal with that I asked them to exclude me until I was ready to face the world. They did that for me. Now that is a true sign of great friends.

I had to take Steve to the airport and I pretty much cried the entire way especially when Katcat called me.  She thinks I am a hero but at that moment I was still a failure. Kat, I thank you for that call I just wasn’t ready for it.

I was headed to Seattle and I really didn’t want to go anymore but it was too late to change the plans. So after awhile I headed off with Liz. Before we left I saw Joe and Kristin and they were all dressed with their medals and I just couldn’t deal. I was pretty rude really but that is how I was feeling.  Sorry guys.

On the way to Seattle Steve called and said ‘hey Maryland is not sold out and its flat you should go for it. I laughed. My family the night before had told me why not sign up for another one. You are already in shape. My Mom’s only request was that it was closer to home. I never said anything but I wanted to yell “ really do you think its that easy” but I didn’t. Anyway I started texting Andy and as I was approaching Seattle I registered for Maryland.

That night there were a few teammates in town and they had decided to stay in the same hotel as me which was great because it had a nice roof top and you could see the sunset and for the first time since I got taken off the course I felt ok, not great but ok. I posted some pictures and then I got the best text ever from Joe. He basically said: Espe is celebrating on the rooftop which means she is feeling better and ready to face the world and with that I was included in the text feed once again. I loved the fact that they gave me the space to cry over my DNF.

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I ended up having a great time in Seattle and very happy that I did not go home. I even got to see an old high school friend who I haven’t seen in 30 years. I think I needed that time to reflect on the race and move on. I am still freaking out about my next ironman but I am not one to quit. Hell it took me 20 years to pass my Landscape Architecture license exam but I finally did it.

There is so much more that I felt and experienced but I have left it out because like I said before I wanted this to be a positive blog not only for you but also for me. Along with the negative things I experienced I also experienced a lot of positive things and that is what I want to focus on. Here are some of the few since I started my training:

  • I became a way better cyclist (at least 5 mph faster)
  • I rode 97 miles for the first time
  • I made it to mile 92 on a very grueling bike ride on race day
  • I had a great time-check out theses pictures

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  • I made it down Sugarloaf in Clermont on many occasions and way faster than 3 mph ok like 5.
  • I now only hate downhill not despise them
  • I have actually ridden 35 MPH (not exactly sure for how long but I hit it and that is huge for me)
  • I took 1.5-2 minutes off of my run pace
  • I transformed my body
  • I gained some terrific friends (you know who you are)
  • I inspired one of my cousins to get in shape
  • I inspired my brother in law to attempt a triathlon
  • I am going to jump out of an airplane to help me conquer my fears about going downhill fast
  • I had the guts to sign up for another Ironman thanks to all of my family and friends who sent me the most amazing words of encouragement.
  • I confirmed that I am insane, nuts, crazy, mad and every other word that describe who I am.

So I am not going to post my training stats but I will end it with a quote as usual.  This quote was posted on Facebook today by a dear friend who I met while at NC State,  Thank you Wendy for posting this today.  It is the perfect quote for my blog today and I love it because it comes from our coach when we where in college.  A man who was a terricfic coach but also a fun guy and a real motivator.  Thank you Jimmy Valvano.  And hell its perfect for my journey.

dont give up Jimmy V

 

Week twenty-two. May 26-June 1, 2014-Getting better

This week started with a 3-hour run that I did not manage to get in last week because of the tenting.  It was Memorial Day and it was not easy to get up but I did and managed 12 miles so the week started off great.  I proceeded to get all my workouts in but I was worried about the weekend.  We had a 6 hour ride and although I had done one already I was still freaking but also excited to see what I could do.

This week I also got my test results that were done to try to figure out what was going on with my stomach. It was confirmed that the abuse I am putting on my body is taking a toll on my intestines. It is not what I wanted to hear but it is what it is. My friend Karen came up with a plan to get me through the race before we start real treatment after I am done. I am confident with this plan and I know this issue will not interfere with the race.

On Saturday we had a 1 hour 10 minute swim scheduled to be followed by a 2 hour and 30 minute run.  Joe from the team suggested we start at 5am for the run and follow it by the swim so we could get finished early.  I agreed although I hate getting up so early.  I know my teammates that are married and have kids are at a point where they need to do everything to keep peace at home.  It has been a long 6 months and I can only imagine the flack they are getting from their spouses and kids.  I am lucky I do not have to contend with that so I go along to support and well I like training with them.  I figured I would just go back to sleep when I get done.

We (Leo, Joe, Liz and Eduardo) took off on the run.  Eduardo took off like a jack rabbit as usual but the rest of us hung tight as a group.  We really did have the best time.  I will not go into the details of our conversations but just know it was worth getting up that early for the conversation.  We followed up with the swim.  Let me tell you that I now know why the swim is first.  My legs and actually my feet were cramping up the entire time.  Seriously, I never knew the bottom of my feet could cramp up.  But the water was cool and felt great so I kept swimming and managed 1.7 miles.  Really the best part was being done by 9:30am.  I had the entire day ahead of me.

We had all decided that we would meet up on Sunday and leave Joe’s house at 5am for our 6-hour ride and then our 1-hour run.  It’s a great place to start and ride south which is a very safe place to ride and we have plenty of options to add mileage.

The day was great.  I got some errand done and before I knew it the time had come to get to bed for another early wake up call.  At around 8:30 pm I get a text message telling me to look on our Facebook page where we got these messages from our coach:

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Oh my, really.  First of all I was on my way to bed and second of all the nerve.  Well there was no way I was going to Shark Valley.  It is an hour drive and well you know how much I just love the alligators so off to Joe’s house I went.  We took it easy to Black Point Marina since it was dark and it had poured so the roads were wet.  I was a little freaked out that my brakes were not working but I powered through it.  After Black Point Joe slowed down to tell me about their route which was different than I what I usually take.  He mentioned that the last turn was not signed which worried me so we ended up deciding that they would go their way and Liz and I would go the way I knew and hook up at Starbucks to hit the bathroom and fill up on water. Before we took off Joe said to me, “just work on being in aero and do what you can do.  I know you can do this.”  I love him for his encouragement and how he makes sure I am ok.

I wanted to stay with the guys to see what I could do but I was scared of missing the turn so our decision was good.  I rode like a crazy person and basically rode in aero the entire time and to my surprise I got to Robert is Here 13 minutes faster than I have ever done before.  I was so excited.  I told Liz let’s just keep going and then head back since the guys would not be at Starbucks for another 30 minutes or so.  We ended up running into them, which was perfect.  At this point they decided we would head out to Everglades National park, which was 5 miles from Robert is Here.  I was like ok great we can add some mileage.  As we took the turn we ran into Derek and Elizabeth so they ended up joining us.  I was determined to draft behind them and keep up.  Well it only lasted for about 3 miles but I was happy because for those 3 miles I was riding in aero and at 20 MPH.   After that 10-mile loop we met up at Starbucks.  I knew I could not keep up so they went their way and Liz and I went my way and we met up at his house for the 1 hour run.

When I got back to his house I was like OMG I did an additional 17 miles since the last 6 hour ride just 3 weeks before.  I would say that is a huge improvement.  I was so happy that even though it was like a million degrees out and we were totally over heating on the run I was happy.  He are some of us after the run.  Eduardo is always out and back and misses the pictures.

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Yes we were hot and sweaty but Joe’s pool was the perfect way to cool off afterwards.  Joe you really are the best for letting us crash your house.

When I got home I posted this and the encouragement I got was priceless.

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This week I managed 90% of training time.  I am happy with this since Monday I was making up a workout from last week and is not included in this weeks stats.

▪   Planned workout duration:  15:40

▪   Actual workout duration: 14:10

What I learned this week is that sticking to the workouts is apparently working. I have been working super hard on the bike since it is my weakest sport and for the first time since January I do feel like I can actually do this.

What was reaffirmed this week is I have great teammates and friends. They have followed me through this journey and they are behind me 100%. I can’t thank them enough. I really do appreciate your patience and your encouragement. It has made this journey worthwhile.

What I have noticed this week is that I am missing some of my teammates that started the journey with me but have been missing the last few weeks.  Where are you Christy and Robert?  I miss you.

Quote for this week is mine and for the first time since I started I actually believe it.

I got this-Espe Suarez Kelly

Week twenty and twenty-one. May 12-25, 2014-From a relaxing vacation to a stress filled training week

Week twenty I was in Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic to celebrate my cousin John Michael’s 50th birthday.  He invited some of his family and his closest friends for a fun filled week on the beach.  I was one of the lucky ones that were invited.  The week came in the mist of some heavy training but there was no way I was going to miss it.  I planned my flights so I could get the major workouts in before I left and after I returned.  The workouts during the week were not too bad and I managed to get some of them in.  I know I could have done more but sleeping in always seemed like a better option.  As it turns out this trip, although not good for my training, was good for my body.  It was the first week in maybe 6-7 weeks that my stomach did not bother me.  I think I really needed to rest and relax and that I did.

I want to take a moment and say thank you to John Michael and Richard for inviting me.  I truly enjoyed spending time with my family and with your beautiful friends.  The food was incredible, the beach was beautiful, the drinks were plentiful and the company was amazing.  I feel completely blessed to be your cousin.  I went back home completely relaxed and re-energized. Here are some pictures from the week:

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Birthday boy and me on the beach

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View from my living room

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The beach with sand so soft it felt like flour

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The finest Rose

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Table setting elegant each and every night

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Lobster, ceviche and fish snack on the boat

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John Michael with his favorite sister Ana Maria after the boat ride

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Lobster dinner OMG so good

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Drinks by the pool with the most beautiful moon

Week twenty-one is another story.  It started out with a 4.5-hour ride on the windiest day I have ever ridden in.  I had just gotten new Zipp wheels, which made my bike super light.  That made for a very unsteady ride and it was a bit scary for the first time out with the new wheels but I managed to hang on and finish 62 miles.  I will have to admit there was a time when we did not think we would make it back but we just kept at it and we finally made it home.  I was never so happy to see my house.

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I survived

That was followed by an email from our coach that basically said that some of us were being complacent and we needed to get our butts in gear.  The email went to an undisclosed list of people and the way it was written it seemed like he was just talking to me.  I was most upset because I have been working really hard.  This really stressed me out and I started having nightmares about not finishing the race, which kept me from getting any sleep.  I was determined to get every workout in this week and I did all but one. Not only did I do them but I did really good. I attribute that to the week’s rest and the fact that I am feeling so much better.

This week also included tenting our house for termites. This was just one big pain in the butt.  We had to take all the food out and then move out for a few days.  We stayed at our friend’s house, which was fun but well you do not have all your stuff so it can be tricky.  For instance, we had to move out on Thursday and I was supposed to do a 3-hour run.  When I went to get ready for the run I realized I had no running shoes so I had to scrap that.  Not really an ideal situation but I knew I had a day off on Monday so I decided not to worry and just do it then. Then Friday I got ready to go to my computrainer class when I realized I had no flip-flops so I had to head out in my nice sandals. That was kind of funny. They went really good with my workout clothes.

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Fancy Sandals with bike shorts. Classic

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The house under tent

That night we decided to stop by Happy Hour since Steve hadn’t seen the happy hour crew in awhile. After a couple of drinks I announced to Steve “I need to go I am feeling like I am getting drunk.” He was shocked and responded by saying “I never though I would here you say that.” One of the guys followed up by saying “you must be taking this Ironman thing serious”. It was really funny because it’s true. I even shocked myself when I said that. So we left, grabbed some food at Whole Foods and had dinner with our friends at their house.   It was probably one of the earliest night I have had in a really long time.

Saturday morning we had a swim and bike workout. We had to swim for 1:hour and 15 minutes and then ride for 2.5 hours. The water felt good and I was swimming great. Ended up swimming 1.8 miles. I was pleased with the effort. When we got out of the water the guys told me they were doing Sunday’s 4.5 hour ride and then do the 2.5 on Sunday since it was a holiday weekend. I wasn’t prepared for that so I couldn’t go with them. Since no one was left I decided to head back and do the ride later in the day.  We finally got back into the house at 12:30 and I just started cleaning out the fridge and started washing dishes since I wanted to get my kitchen back in order. Before I knew it, it was 7:00pm and I was starving. So needless to say I missed the ride.

I had made plans with Liz for Sunday’s ride so she met us at my house and we took off at 7am as planned. The ride started out good. I took the lead and basically pulled until Black point Marina. Then Steve took the lead until Robert is Here (a great local fruit stand that has bathrooms and a good stopping point). We took a short break, refilled our water bottles and took off. Well I should have known the wind was going to be in our face on the way back since we rode so fast on the way out.   For some reason I always forget. Anyway on the way back I decided to get into my aero bars and see what I could do. Much to my surprise (and Steve and Liz’s surprise) I kicked butt. I was pulling at 19.5 MPH on a straightaway that was about 3 miles long. Now this may not sound fast but the head winds were strong and I usually do about 12 MPH on the way back so that is huge. Then when we turned and I thought let me really see what I can do in the aero bars so I sort of took off thinking Steve and Liz were right behind me. I later found out they couldn’t keep up. Steve told me he could not believe I was riding that fast. I pretty much took the lead all the way home. We ended up doing 68 miles in the same time we had done 62 miles the week before. I felt great. I was already thinking about the next long ride and how I could possibly keep up with the boys if I drafted. I really cannot wait to see how I do. During this ride not only was I going faster but I was also more confident generally so I was taking off quicker at lights and actually drinking while pedaling. Again this may sound like nothing but for me it’s huge because that is one of the reasons I always get dropped.

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Steve and I after the ride.

After the ride Steve was telling me how him and Liz were talking about how confident I looked on the bike and how amazed they were at my riding. The bike has always been my weak sport and given that it is the longest portion of the Ironman it has been freaking me out. I am super excited at my progress. As Steve said, “you have come along way since you started. Thank God because it was so frustrating riding with you but today every time I looked back you were right on my tail”. That was awesome to hear.

So after the ride I stated seeing Facebook posts about our team mates racing Ironman Brazil. These guys were hauling ass and at the end of the day when everyone was finished I got really scared. They all did so well and some even placed in their age groups.

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Iron Alines Ironman Brazil group: Stephanie, Ralph, Hans (double fisting 🙂 ), Silvana, Ale, Angelo, Mike and Dario

I was thinking man I don’t know if I can do this. Then came another post from my infamous coach Andy.

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Andy’s post. He is killing me.

Gotta love this guy.

This week I managed 86% of training time.  Man I only missed one workout and the percentage was not as good as I had hoped.

▪   Planned workout duration:  18:15

▪   Actual workout duration: 15:45

What I learned this week is that I am stronger than I think. That is really a good thing. I think I needed to learn that. I am glad I was able to figure that out with Steve. His encouragement this week was exactly what I needed to get me across the finish line on June 29.

This week’s quote is really about what happened to me.  I finally set myself on fire. It only took 21 weeks but hey better late than never right?

Success isn’t a result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire. ~Arnold H. Glasow

Week nineteen. May 5-11, 2014 – No gears oh no

This past week was all about the big 7-hour workout on Sunday.  I stressed all week because of it.  Six hours on the bike and 1 hour run immediately after.  I have never ridden for 6 hour so it seemed huge.  I started the week following most of the workouts and just kept thinking about Sunday.

As it turns out Sunday was Mother’s day and Joe from our team posted the following:

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Coach suggested I do it on Saturday with the group since I was travelling on Sunday and he didn’t want anything to get in the way so after some back and forth I agreed.  I was most concerned about getting dropped so I made Leo promise he wouldn’t drop me until we reached Blackpoint Marina (about 1 hour from our starting point) or until it was light.

Saturday came and we were planning on leaving at 5am.  I was already to keep up with the boys.  Shortly after take off I realized I could not change gears.  I was ‘Leo my gears will not change”.  He asked if I had charged the battery.  I said no but battery should be working.  He rode up ahead to tell the others.  We stopped for a brief moment and battery was working since I was able to change from big gear to small gear but the back cassette was stuck in the easiest gear.  That was not a good thing.  We finally made it to Blackpoint and I called Steve to meet me to see if he could figure out what was going on.  As we were about to leave I noticed a loose wire so Leo was nice enough to push it back in to the derailleur and boom the gears started working.  The guys went ahead and we planed to meet at the Starbucks.

I made it to Starbucks and they showed up with a few other teammates.

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The group. Evan, Joe, Stephanie, Angelo, Leo, Me, Eduardo and Sylvana

After a short stop to refill bottles we took off.  Oh man the wind was ridiculous so I just pedaled and hoped I could make it back in time for the run.  In the end I had gotten back to Blackpoint 1 hour sooner than I had thought so I circled back to make up that hour.  So far the ride was good except for the few times when the wind almost took me down ( I must be getting better at my handling skills since I always kept control of the bike).  I used this time alone to practice riding in the aero bars.  I definitely went faster but I freaked if the wind got too strong.  So I just kept practicing.

Somehow I had not calculated my water and soon after I left Blackpoint I ran out.  I spotted a fire station and thought I should stop and ask them to fill my bottles but I didn’t want to stop and figured the Farm Store is not that far.  Well it was further than I remembered but I finally made it and refilled.  I finally made it back to our starting point and was a little short on time when I saw Leo.  He said he was at 99.3 miles and wanted to make it to 100.  I was like hey I’m at 79.3 so I definitely want to make 80 so we took off on a loop, which brought him to 100 and me to 80.  I was very excited about 80 miles.  I had never ridden that far.  So I took a photo of my Garmin to post on Facebook.  Typical response from coach:

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After Joe got back we all changed to running shoes and took off on our run.  We were all pretty beat from the bike so it was a pretty funny conversation.  First we were like ok I am walking for the hour, then we went to lets run/walk then we finally made it to we will take a walk break at every mile.  So were moving at a pretty good pace when Leo starts with the “I want to be an Ironman” video.  We were cracking up and I said oh I am going to watch that for some inspiration.  Here it is:

We ended up running 5 miles at 12-minute mile pace.  We all thought it was pretty good.  When we finished Joe starts yelling “It’s over”.  Yes it was so we did what we always do and that is take a picture.  He we are after the workout.

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“It’s over” Leo, me and Joe

Joe and I planned to meet Sunday for the open water swim.  Thank God he agreed to go because I was so tired I know had he not gone I would have skipped it.  It was really a great swim and the farthest either one of us had swam.  We made 1.77 miles in 1 hour 10 minutes.

This week I managed 89% of training time.  Not bad.

▪   Planned workout duration:  18:10

▪   Actual workout duration: 16:12

What I learned this week is that I can do these long workouts and not completely die ( I was super tired and ended up passing out before 10pm but not dead) and that I need to learn more about how things work on my bike.  Like check wires if gears do not change.  That trip to Blackpoint would have been much faster had I looked for something so simple.  But I suppose that is what training is for.

Quote for the week is a reminder that if I just keep up with the workouts I will make it across the finish line.  It is ok to have thoughts about quitting one week as long as I do not act on the thought.

Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out. – Robert Collier

 

 

 

Week eighteen. April 28-May 4, 2014-Giving up crossed my mind

Week eighteen was hard. Steve arrived back home so that usually turns into a lets go out kind of a week. It was no different this time. My workouts were going good but I kept trying to avoid them. I just felt like why bother.  Then Thursday morning when my alarm went off and I was tired Steve says just stay in bed. Which I did. That was not cool. He is supposed to be supporting me and forcing me to get up when I do not want to. I missed a great swim workout. Then of course I missed my run later in the day. It is so easy to get lazy and then blame someone else. But that is how I felt when I finally did wake up.

Friday was a day off and we were heading to Clermont for training. The weather was not good so coach changed the run and the bike workouts. We usually do the big ride on Saturday and run on Sunday but we ended up running on Saturday.

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The group before the run

The clay trail was wet so we basically were running in mud. At first I was dodging the mud so my shoes wouldn’t get dirty. After about 5 miles I ended up stepping into what I thought was a dry spot. Well it turned out to be squishy mud so I sank. Shook the mud off and kept going. At this point I didn’t care about the shoes anymore so I just started running through puddles and mud without a care in the world. At around mile eight I realized that I could beat my 10-mile time again so I picked up the pace. I flew past Steve and ended up running it in the same time as last time I was in Clermont so I was happy with that. I still had 5 more miles to go so I started the second loop. Given that we are in the middle of nowhere coach brings water and waits for us every few miles. I was out of water and thought coach would be waiting but he wasn’t there. No biggie he will be at mile 1. Nope and well I ended up running the last 5 miles without water. I was not a happy camper and when I finished I just lost it. After a few minutes of yelling I turned around and told my teammates to just go ahead and give me the Beeker Award. I mean no one was going to top that breakdown.

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After my meltdown: Me, Eduardo, Rachel and Liz

The next day was the Sunday ride which was a 92 mile loop. I had the course loaded and ready to go on my Garmin. But of course it did not work again.   Not happy with my Garmin products right now. Anyway I just started riding hoping to keep up with the group but ended up loosing them in about 8 minutes but I wasn’t worried since Steve was with me. We studied the directions that coach had typed out for us and proceeded on the ride.   We were cruising pretty good and got to an intersection that’s said turn right on Buckhill. The road did not say Buckhill but it seemed like the correct road so we just kept going and following the turns as written in the directions. Then all of a sudden about 12 miles later we thought “haven’t we already been here”. Yep we were almost where we started. Ok so we missed something. We figured we would try again. Then we found ourselves at that intersection that was supposed to be Buckhill. We googled, we looked at the map coach had given us and we just couldn’t make any sense of it. So when a car pulled up I went over and asked where the damn road was. “It’s just about 2 blocks straight ahead”. We did not take that road before because it said Turnpike so we did not think that was the road we should take. Sure enough there was Buckhill. Buckhill is pretty much how it sounds. There were 3 hills and I mean big ones. We started and really they looked worse than they actually were. Actually that 12-mile loop that we did was worse. We finished the second hill and Steve stopped. He was getting tired and wanted to head back. So we were like do we head back or continue and do the 12-mile loop again. I chose the 12-mile loop. For some reason it seemed like a safer option.

At this point I realized I was not going to get 92 miles in so I needed to use this 12 miles to my advantage. I kept hearing in my head coach telling me that I needed to let go on the hills so I thought ok this is what I will do for the next 12 miles. I will try not to brake on the way down. I did pretty well. I even pedaled on the way down. I even had to scream at Steve to keep going because he was slowing down and I was speeding up. I cruised past him on the up hills a few times. I was actually getting less tired as we powered through the 12-mile loop. We ended up doing 52 miles of hills. That was a good workout and should help me for my race. When we got back I saved my ride since I wanted to look at my stats when I got home. Steve and I were done with the weekend so we quickly packed up and headed home. It was a long drive.

As soon as we got home I was dying to see my stats so I plugged in my Garmin but guess what. The ride did not save. Again, I had a meltdown. At a minimum I wanted to see how fast I was going down the hills.

Steve was trying everything to figure out how to use the stupid computer but nothing. We were both getting mad. After awhile we gave up since we had to wait until Monday to call Garmin. Anyway, Steve later told me I was at least doing 25mph. That is like a record for me. Check out coach’s response.

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This week I managed 78% of training time.  I am not happy with that. Not at this stage of the game.

▪   Planned workout duration:  14:25

▪   Actual workout duration: 11:15

What I learned this week is that I am getting a little tired and somewhat bored with this whole thing. There was even a few days that I thought really I do not need to do this? Really what do I have to prove? That is not a very good way to be feeling 2 months before the big race. So I did what any good Suarez would do.  I grabbed a bottle of wine and proceeded to drink it until my thought turned to “tomorrow is a new day”.

Quote for this week says it all:

You cry and you scream and you stomp your feet and you shout.  You say, “You know what? I’m giving up, I don’t care.” ANd then you go to bed and you wake up and it’s a brand new day, and you pick yourself back up again.  Nicole Scherzinger

 

Week sixteen and seventeen. April 14-27, 2014-The self doubt continues.

Week 16 was about getting over my race.  I needed to shake off the bad run and move on.  I did most of my workouts during the week and then headed to Clermont for the weekend.  Clermont started out horrible.  My group dropped me before I even got on the bike.  I finally ran into a few of them and they were lost and apparently so was I.    I had passed them and stopped to look to see where we were supposed to be.  I was at a curve so I do not think they saw me stop so I went back.  At this point they were taking off and I yelled to wait for me.  I followed but lost them and never saw them again.  I was so upset and so alone.  I had not signed up for this.  Riding alone in Clermont was not my plan. At this point I somehow ended up on a trail.  I was like crap what do I do.  I knew I was not going to get 80 miles in by myself.  So I stopped and checked Training Peaks.  Four hours is all I really had to do.  So since I was by myself and lost I decided to take it.  It was really pretty cool even though I was alone and crying.  I did actually enjoy it.  It had hills and it was shady and well there were no cars.  I even rode with some really cool people during some of it.   I took it for 25 miles.  At this point I decided to head back and then I was packing up and heading back home.  I was so upset.  During the ride I was like really why am I part of this team.  I know I would have never left anyone behind.  No one even bothered to check.  So I called Steve. He told me to just keep going and at least get my workout in.  So I decided I might as well do that.  Really an Ironman is done alone anyway so it is good mental training.

We were supposed to do a 3-mile run after the ride so I ended up doing that.  I killed the run and thought might as well go eat.  After I totally inhaled a steak sandwich I decided well let me take a nap.  Then it all of a sudden it was time for the Sugarloaf hill repeats.  I figured might as well get those done since I really need to get down the damn hills faster.  I was still mad so I just took off.  The first uphill about killed me but I got up pretty fast.  Then down I went and I was still slow but way faster than the last time.  I stopped to talk to Andy and I asked where everyone was.  He said a few people had left and I told him I almost left myself.  He asked why and I told him and he basically said well everyone pretty much had gotten lost.  He told me to go back up and at least let go of the brakes at the end.  I said I had done that the last time and he did say that yeah he noticed I had come down faster.   So I went back up the hill and came down even faster the second time.  I was starting to feel better about everything and figured might as well stay for the clay trail run on Sunday.

The next morning we headed to the trail and the weather was just perfect.  In the 60’s and overcast and a little drizzle.  I took off and decided I needed to take advantage of the cool weather.  As I was approaching mile 8 I saw that I could beat my 10 mile time and went for it.  At some point Derek caught up to me and said that I was running at a pretty good pace.  I told him I wanted to beat my 10 mile time and he paced me and I did end up beating my time.  So I thank him for that.  It felt good and I am happy I did get that run in.  I actually got some confidence back.  I know the run is what is going to get me across the finish line before the cutoff time in Coeur D’Alene.

This week I managed 86% of training time.  I am happy with that considering I am in such a doubtful state.

▪   Planned workout duration:  16:40

▪   Actual workout duration: 14:20

What I learned this week is that if I am going to get this done I really just need to depend on myself.  16-17 hours is a long time and I need to get used to it.  The swim you are alone.  The bike you are alone.  The only part to talk to people is the run.  So for the first 9.5 hours it will be my conversation and me.  This weekend was a good training session for that.

The best part of this week was getting a Facebook message from Susan from Sarasota. She said she had stumbled across my blog on Facebook and was inspired about what I am doing. She is about to start her Ironman training and thought what I had done at Florida 70.3 was incredible. This is great motivation for me. I can’t let people down right?

Week 17 is testing week but I decided it was also going to be about reconnecting with the team.  That really did not happen.  First our swim coach was out of town so not many people showed up for the swim.  Then it just went down hill from there.  I ended up doing my workouts alone, which was fine, but I could not wait for the weekend to reconnect.  Saturday came and Andy wasn’t there.  I found out he had gone to Sarasota.  There was a race and he has a group there.  I usually know about these things but since we have cut out my weight training sessions with him I do not get the updates anymore.  I hate that but I did have to cut that out of my schedule.

So Saturday was a swim test, a hill run and an easy ride.  I was so excited for this.  Did the swim test.  2000 meters at 42 minutes.  Not bad.  Could have been better.  Then to the bridge repeats.  Started out great.  Killed the first 2.  Joe even ran up to me and told me damn Espe you are really getting fast.  I explained that 20 pounds really makes a difference.  But then all of a sudden everything started breaking down.  My stomach started hurting, I was over heating and I was sweating like Leo (OMG he sweats).  I started with the chills and I thought no not again.  I managed the 5 repeats and had to walk all the way back and I decided to skip the ride. I got home took a shower and proceeded to sleep for 6 hours.  I was shocked.  I texted Andy to see if I should skip the 2 hour ride and concentrate on the 4 hour ride on Sunday and this what he said.

Andy mess

But he has no compassion. So I ended up getting up and doing the 2 hours.  Then I went back to bed for 11 hours of sleep.  When I woke up it was the first time since training started that I realized I forgot what it felt like to not be tired.  So I posted on Facebook.  This what my friends say as opposed to what Andy says.

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Love my friends.

This week I managed 82% of training time.  I really wanted to get 100% but well I just did not manage that.

▪   Planned workout duration:  16:00

▪   Actual workout duration: 13:50

 

Since it was a testing week I decided I want to check my weight loss results. I was blown away. I know I have lost weight but I measured today and I feel good about what I have accomplished. Results:

Start Weight 145 pounds. Current weight 125 pounds.

Measurements: Bust from 36.0″ to 33.0” Waist from 32.5″ to 30.0” Hips from to 37.0″ to 35.0” Gut (or what I call my keg) from 35.5″ to 31.0” (yeah keg is gone-sort of sad really). So total 20 pounds lost and 12 inches lost.

This week what I learned is that I really have not gotten my sleep in order.  I need to work on that. Seriously need to work on that. But I did say in my second week that I was struggling with that. Apparently hasn’t changed. Ok I will work on it.

Quote of the week is about taking each step as a goal. I chose this because it is true. I sometimes look at the big goal and forget that all the little goals to get there are just as important.

It is not enough to take steps which may some day lead to a goal; each step must be itself a goal and a step likewise.
–Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

 

 

 

Week nine. February 24-March 2, 2014-And the high continues

This week was really all over the place for me but it ended incredibly so I am going with that.  During the week I had a personal meltdown which really affected me.  That in turn affected some of my workouts but it also fueled some of them so a meltdown can be good sometimes.  It is amazing what anger can do on the bridge repeats.  I not only killed them I found the anger was gone.

As is turns out I was not the only one in meltdown.  On Saturday we did a swim test and a run test.  As we were coming out of the water we saw Kristen standing there ready to run but it was obvious that she did not do the swim.  We asked her why and she just said she didn’t feel like it.  She really did not act like herself so I went back to talk to her after I got ready for the run.  She told me that she wanted me to know that she read my blog because she needed to get inspired.  She told me she was having a personal breakdown and she was even checking to see which race she could defer to.  First the fact that she went to my blog for inspiration floored me.  This blog is for me to share my journey and so that when I am done it is all collected in one place.  Having a team mate read it for inspiration is unexpected and really almost brought me to tears.  Second Kristen there is no way in hell that you are switching races.  We are all in this together.

Off we went to the track for the run test.  As we were running people started commenting things like Espe you are getting skinnier, Espe you are running really good, Espe you are doing good and so on.  I seriously do not know what happened during the run but I just kept going faster and faster and when I finished I knew I had done well since the comments kept coming.

Earlier in the morning Christy asked if anyone wanted to go to breakfast and some of us said sure so while at breakfast I checked my watch to see the run test results.

run test

Proof

I ended up taking off 1 minute and 22 seconds off per mile since the first run test.  It really felt so good.  I can’t believe I did that in 2 months.  Later I went to Ultrabike to get my brakes adjusted.  I was telling Andreas that I had completed my run test and that I ran 8:53 minute miles for 3.38 miles and he was like damn that was fast.  Anything with an 8 in front of it is good.  Again it felt so good.  After I left I thought was it really 8:53 or was it really 9:53.  When I got home I checked it really was 8:53.  Again it felt so good.

When I got home I had to change the back tire.  It had a slow leak and did not want a flat on Sunday and it was good practice right.  While putting the tire back on I messed up the brakes and didn’t know what to do.  I called Steve but he couldn’t help me so I reached out to the coach.  I asked him to help me in the morning.  He said he would.  It ended up being that they needed to be moved.  I was too scared to put too much force for fear of making it worse.  It all worked out.

We had a 3 hour ride so we headed to Deerfield Beach.  It is a great place to ride.  It is a straight shot to Palm Beach and then back.  Only problem is the headwinds.  You get them in both directions.  It was a great ride and Christy and I managed more than 15mph average speed in Zone 2.

We all wanted to eat before heading back so Christy and Robert went to look for a place when they got back they found us sitting on this bench.  It was cold and felt so good.

group on cold bench

Leo, Joe, Me and Kristen

We ended up at Offerdahl’s Cafe and Grill and it was pretty good.  It is always nice to hang out with the team mates after a big workout.

Later that night I was texting with Andy about this week since I am going to have to miss a few workouts and in the mist of the conversation I got this response.

andy message

That last text is why I am still on a high.

SInce this was testing week and since everyone keeps telling me that I look skinnier I decided to compare the stats.  In my head I had only lost 3 pounds.  It is what the scale says so I decided to measure and look at the difference.  Boy I am glad that I did.

This is where I started

  • Weight 142 pounds
  • Bust 36.0″ Waist 32.5″ Hips  37.0″ Gut (or what I call my keg) 35.5″

This is where I am today

  • Weight 137 pounds
  • Bust 35.0″ Waist 32.5″ Hips  36.5″ Gut (or what I call my keg) 34.5″
  • And I had to put a belt on to keep my shorts up yesterday.

For a total loss of 5 pounds and 2.5 inches.  This is not bad considering I am still struggling with the nutrition.

This week I managed 84% of training time.

  • Planned workout duration:  10:40
  • Actual workout duration: 8:55

What I learned this week is that I am actually good at this.  I just need to stop being a lazy triathlete. I am working on that.

I am including two quotes today.  The first one for Kristen and the second one for Christy.

“Between you and every goal that you wish to achieve, there is a series of obstacles, and the bigger the goal, the bigger the obstacles. Your decision to be, have and do something out of the ordinary entails facing difficulties and challenges that are out of the ordinary as well. Sometimes your greatest asset is simply your ability to stay with it longer than anyone else.” ~ Brian Tracy

“It does not matter how slowly you go so long as you do not stop. ” ~ Confucius

Week six. February 3-10, 2014 Recovery week

Recovery week is not really recovery at all.  It really is less hours but higher intensity.  We do some testing during this week so you really do push yourself.  It started out good but then I got the dreaded stomach virus that has been going around.  I was out and seriously could not leave the house.  Thursday’s swim was hilarious.  I could not keep up at all.  Coach Aaron was like did you eat breakfast?  I had but there was nothing in my system from Wednesday.  Three quarters into the work out I told Aaron i am done.  He said no just stay you already did most of the work and I am going to give you guys fins.  I can kick some but with the fins on so I stayed.  So we had to do 6-50’s.  I took off on the first one and when I got back to the wall Ralf says to me “did you put a rocket up you a$%”.  I laughed so hard because I get that every time I put my fins on.  It was a great way to finish that workout because I really did not think I was going to finish.

I normally weight train right after the swim but Andy cancelled on me since he was now sick so I ended up doing the run with Christy.  We had to do what we call strides and then hop, which strengthens the legs.  So when doing stride we count to 30 on each foot.  First one we take off.  When we got to the end Christy was like man you are fast.  I am fast but I am lazy so I mostly do not run fast although it certainly feels better when I do.  It was great to have finished these two works outs after feeling so horrible.

I started feeling better towards the end of the week and was able to make the 5k race which was a fundraiser for Chapman Partnership.  They “empower homeless men, women and children to build a positive future by providing the resources and assistance critical to growth and independence”.  We run this race becasue Even Reese, one or team mates, is on the board and we always support our team mates charities.

The race was at the zoo and these sort of races usually are hard to do your best but I have no idea what happened but I raced my best 5k ever and ended up 5th in my age group.  I am normally way into the middle.

Just because we raced did not mean we could skip our work outs.  Saturday was an hour run and a 40 minute open water swim.  We were testing and had specific things we had to do.  Our 5k race time was the results for the run test and for the swim we needed to time 1000 meters.  Coach told us to run for 30 to warm up before the race and then swim after the race.  So that’s what we did.  The swim was interesting.  The ocean was full of man o war so we were told to go swim in a pool.  Long story short we ended up at LA Fitness pool.  Heater was broken and we had to wait for a lane.  So it was cold and we were tired and hungry.  Not looking good at all.  We finally got in but we did not test.  This pool was not the ideal place for that.  Really it was good that we got the 40 minutes in.

Sunday’s ride was even funnier.  It was a little cold so I took my brand new wind breaker.  It was a little (well a lot) big and that is not good in heavy winds.  It was like a parachute and it made it super hard to keep up but my team mates were great.  They pushed me the entire way.  Even Joe who had just finished Ragnar (the 200 mile relay race from Miami to key West).  Yeah that was pretty impressive to see him show up at 7am sharp.  We turned around at a Starbuck where we stopped to use the bathroom and Leo decided to get a shot of espresso.  There were some other Ragnar vans there and they overheard us talking about the race.  They came out and were shocked that Joe was riding with us.  But hey that is how an IronAlien rolls.  Word of advice to all Aliens.  Do not let Leo have an espresso on the ride.  He took off like he had a rocket up his well you know what.

This week I only made 80% of my workouts.

  • Planned workout duration:  10:25
  • Actual workout duration: 8:25

Best part of the week was Friday.  REST DAY.  Some people got up to ride.  No way I will ever miss a rest day.

Today’s quote is all about not stopping to get the workouts in.  This is for Christy who kept us going on Saturday and made me do the swim.

“The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra.” – Jimmy Johnson

Week Five. January 27-February 2, 2013- Freaking awesome week

I do not know how long this will last but this was a great week.  I made it to most of my work outs, I actually rode with the group (and kept up for 30 minutes and they were going about 20-25 mph) in Key Biscayne (I hate that place) and I ran my best half marathon in the last 3 years.  So it was a great week.

Here is proof that I was at the group work out on Saturday.  Here we are for our open water swim before our 3 hour ride.

group pic

So on Sunday was the Miami Marathon.  I had originally signed up for the full because my friend Josh was doing his 100th marathon on that day and i was going to run with him but I changed plans when I signed up for the ironman.  I ended up doing the half which ended up being part of my training for the weekend.  I ran with Christy and we did great.  Turns out it was my best time in the last 3 years.  It was great running with her because we pushed each other when we needed to be pushed.  Here we are almost at the end.

espe

After the race I lost Christy so I moved on to the Footworks tent where I met Sue and Carlos.  These are the guys I usually run with.  I also wanted a massage, food and mimosas which were plentiful at the Footworks tent.  Best place to be after the race.

Carlos sue espe

I pretty much stayed there until Josh came in.  It was great.  There was a banner for him to cross and everyone was cheering him on.  I will have to say doing 100 marathons by the time you are 40 is one serious accomplishment.

You go Josh.

espe sue josh

It really was a good day but when I finally got around to doing the Restwise and ending up with a 100% score that was really the high point of my training so far.  Ever since I started I was getting 40-70% and it was telling me to take it easy.  Getting 100% means I am finally getting into shape.

100%

I do not have the workout stats for this week.  I really do not care because really I know I had a great week and I am just gonna stick to that.  All I know is that if most of my weeks can be like this then I will become an Ironman on June 29th.