Iron Girl Race Day Recap… The Run

As I was saying… the sun was shinning and the wind was at my back. Man-was I pumped. You would think one would be tired after swimming in a typhoon and riding a bike through a wind tunnel! Just kidding, it wasn’t all that bad, it was behind me now. I was smiling, laughing, yes tearing up, and chatting with the ladies along the route.

The route was fast and flat, a small turn around and then head back to the finish!

I have to say, I was pushing it. Didn’t need that Gu I had in my pocket, I was running off of pure excitement, Joy, and adrenaline!

I chatted with one or two ladies who were passing me, we said things like “you are awesome, keep it up!” and “See you at the finish line!”

Before I knew it the run was over! What the heck, the whole race was over! The race that I had prepared for for how many months, swimming many times a week, running, more times a week, and trying to bike as much as mentally possible. It all paid off, can I tell you (you probably already guessed this) but I am tearing up right now! I probably will each and every time I re-read these posts.

The excitement, the exhilaration, the joy of going through the finish line is so amazing, everyone in their life must once feel the feeling of working hard to complete a goal and then completing it, and completing it well. It is a feeling of a life time, it is addicting and it makes you say – I am ready for another!

I finished, man did I finish! I was so pumped with adrenaline I think I talked with over 50 women and met the winner. She was so nice! Competing in a race or sport that you love makes you a happy person. I swear. As Reese Witherspoon’s character ELLE WOODS in Legally Blonde put it “…exercise gives endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t kill their husbands!”

Happy people just don't kill their husbands!

Happy people just don’t kill their husbands!

Up next… my race times and how they compare to my pre race goals!

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Iron Girl 2013 Race Day Recap… The Bike

Jogging out of the transition area, hit the line and jumped on my bike. The gears were too low, so (and here is where my user error occurs) I proceed to ‘cross my chains’ What? YES. Now my pedals would not move forward. Any of you out there that have had a 6 gear Iron Man quality bike know that when your chains cross, you are not going anywhere till you uncrossed them. I am not an experienced rider, if I were I probably could have stayed on the bike and shifted till I was in the clear, but I had to dismount. Not, though, before I gave a big smile to the camera guy and rode past him. Can’t have a bad picture, now can we?

bike pic 2

Dismounted, not many riders passed me, I clicked my gears and hand pedaled my pedals until I was clear to go, I think this took about 6-8 min off my time. Lesson Learned. And off I rode.

The wind was at my face, side, back, and other side, ( that is called ‘coming from all directions’, thank you narrator in my head) and I pushed. The view was so pretty, the Bay on one side and trees on the other, the sun was shining down and the sky was light blue. I was having an experience of a life time! I pretty much passed everyone, all you could hear was “passing on your left” as I passed each Iron girl. I hit the turn around and kept up the pedaling. “Passing on your left” was what I said, and “you go girl!”, “right on sister”, and a few other motivational phrases were yelled back to me. Before I was completed the bike I was passed by probably 3 ladies. I was pleased!bike pic 1

Into the transition I went, quick, quick. Pro-compression visor that matched my Pro-compression socks, CHECK!

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NUUN at the ready, Mike’s recovery drink and a GU and I was running out of the transition area. I waved to my parents and down the road I went.

The wind had died down now and at my back, the sun was shinning and I was pumped for the run!

Running in the heat

AKA: MR. 101As most of you east coast dwelling runners know, the heat, humidity, and almost constant thunder and lightning storms have plagued us for well over a month now. Though these conditions are not prime for getting a great training in, we still need to get out there and get our #’s in before the goal races we have set for ourselves occurs.

Here are some good strategies to help you be smart about protecting yourself in the heat;

Hydrate! Water is the most essential component in the human body. Waters role in the body is to cushion and protect vital organs, aid in digestion, and most importantly while we are out running in the heat – regulated body temperature.

 drink 17-20 oz of fluid 2 hrs before starting
drink 7-10 oz of fluid every 10-20 minutes during exercise
drink 16-24 oz of fluid when you finish, for every lb of body weight you lost during your exercise

*remember: rehydration occurs faster in the presence of Sodium, regardless if it is a sports drink!

Location Pick a shaded trail, be smart, a hot black-top road with no shade what-so-ever is going to be a huge FAIL on a hot and humid day.

Time of day Even though humidity is higher in the morning the temperature is usually lower, make sure you pick a nice shaded course and hit the streets early, before work, to beat the hot temperatures after work. I see those girls out in their bra tops and tiny shorts at 5:30pm in the 88 degree weather and I wonder, are they training for the Badwater UltraMarathon in Death Valley? Doubt it! WHAT ARE THEY THINKING??? (I digress…)

Intensity The intensity at which you complete your run should be lower than on a cool or not humid day. So, take it down a notch or two. You are not going to win or lose an event if you worked out with less intensity for a few work outs.

Temperature Know that various temperatures vs. Humidity will affect your body during hot days. Know that 10% humidity is generally safe up to 90 degrees but 50% humidity is a risk factor when you’re reaching the higher temps. Be smart about your age and physical fitness level when the humidity is high.i'm melting

Fitness Acclimatization, you can acclimatize your body within 14 days by slowly increasing your time exercising in the heat, starting with 15 minute segments a day. This will allow you to feel more comfortable and allow your body to function at a safer level when in the heat.

Clothing Wear sweat wicking, light clothing during hot runs. There are so many different clothing companies now a days that offer the highest tech fabric for any temperature. There is no excuse to have the wrong clothing on a hot day.

REST It is important to know when you need to rest or take your workout inside. When the humidity is high, don’t risk setting yourself back because you decided to hit the trail when the temperature was 85 degrees and the humidity was at 65% and you haven’t worked on your acclimatization.

It must be noted:  Don’t go out for a run AND run straight home when you hear thunder and see lightning!

Be smart and enjoy your runs! dog with fan

Training by the #’s

So this week was not has humid and hot, some nice cool mornings. This was also a week that I like to call a down week. Where my training schedule is less than the 3 other weeks of that 4 week period.

I like to give myself down weeks because it gives my brain and body a rest from all the intense training. I believe it helps me improve, keeps me from over training, and helps me stay motivated.

During this week I also need to watch what I am eating more closely because I am burning WAY fewer calories and if I am not careful could gain some weight and that is not something I want to do because I am not yet at my racing weight (more on that some other day)

So here goes, this week by the numbers…

22 miles run
3 miles walked (I’ll elaborate on this later)
1 hour with the trainer (working on my ULTRA tight Right shoulder, hip, and calf)
1000 meter normal swim
Speed drills in the pool: 10×25, 10×50, and 2×100
40 min. bike (I was able to get a thought other than that I was going to fall off in my head during this ride, Success!)

I still have, a lake swim and bike ride for this week.

Banking, Training, Trainer, and a quick race recap (warning, I complain a little)

Rounding out the week of my 2nd and 3rd weeks of tri-training, I feel like this has been my schedule forever. I am really settling right in and seeing results as I bank training sessions into my bank of ‘TRI-TRUST.’ No, that is not a real bank, but where I put all my training and will withdraw when I complete the Athleta Iron Girl 2013 in September AND when I hit the pavement in Philly for my 5th Marathon.

I also hit up the personal trainer this week and ran a 10k race and scored a PR. (SEE, this is where my bankable training comes in handy)

I banked the following numbers.
Week #2
35 miles ran
2425 meters swam
1 hr and 50 min. bike
Riding (horseback) 1 hr
Turbo Fire 45, HIIT 15 and Tone 30

Week #3 (still in progress, but expected!)
35 miles ran
2750 meters swam
50 min. bike

In other news… I went to see my old friend and Personal Trainer Katie this week. She tested my balance and we found that my whole right side is TIGHT! This includes, my shoulder, my hip, and my calf. So I have been doing all the stretches she suggested and I have already felt differences in my range of motion.

Also, I ran the Good Neighbor Day race on July 4th or (should be better known as) INDEPENDENCE DAY!

The race offers a 5k, 10k, and 15k run and walking and kiddie races. It is a 3 loop course, each loop is a 5k.

I ran the 10k. I have run the 15k a few times but I had 7 miles on my schedule so I chose the 10k and did a 1 mile warm up at or near race pace to get the feel.

So, I’ll cut to the chase. It was 76 degrees, about 98% humidity, which made the race temp feel like 86 degrees. The course is all black-top, no shade to speak of, but they spray water and neighbors put on their hoses and sprinklers which is nice. The police are great and super helpful to anyone in need. There are always plenty of people cheering the runners on, which is also nice.

The race went off late, per usual. All the runners were yelled at and practically got finger wagged by some lady on stage telling us to all stop talking and to listen up. I would understand if the information was important and was goign to save my life on the race course, but it wasn’t! Just unneccesary, really.

OK, I just have to say it, this race is my least favorite race, but it is the ONLY race around on Independence Day and that is why I do it. (sorry)

The race started and we were off. Many ran out too fast. (It is a small town race, so it is a great time to learn your running lessons see https://erintris.wordpress.com/2013/06/28/starting-off-too-fast/.) I kept slowing myself down, telling myself that the heat will kill me on the second lap if I didn’t watch it. 5k was done and I was on my second lap. I waved and said good morning to the Police Chief as he went by and he did the same. (note: my sister’s family are good friends with the Chief and his family, they are good people.)

Second loop and I wanted to push it, I knew there was a slight hill coming up so I waited until I hit the 2nd to last water station, dropped the whole cup of water on my head and ran. I ended up with a negative split! (yes, that is 2 races in a row!) and got a PR 9:02mm. That is unofficial though, cause they chip time, but they chip time by the gun not by the individual. I knew though that it took me 51 seconds to get to the sensors. Am I the only one that bothers? Do I take the time I know I did it in or do I take the gun time?

Anyways, I felt great at the finish, had to walk at least .25 miles (or so it felt) to get to the water. Why would they do that on such a hot day? Everyone was still just standing at the finish line making it a mob scene chit chatting, standing in runners way, and not replying when I asked if they knew where I could get water. They just looked at me like a deer in head lights, anyways… races are fun and I am happy I completed it.

Did you complete in an Independence Day race?