Ramping it Up

Winter is always such a bad time for me, I don't like the cold very much, yet I live in the coldest part of Utah, some friends even call it the Utah Tundra. It is January and I know that we still have three long months of Winter and then our Spring is never really Spring, we still get snow til mid June, it makes for gorgeous green mountains all around but it makes for a very sad Isela. I grew up in the coast where the sun was out everyday and the scent of the ocean came to me with the breeze of the wind. I need the sun to survive, I need the sun to be able to run faster, to tan my skin, yep, I already look pale and although to many I am still a nice chocolate color, I can see my "chocolaty" appearance fading. Winter sees me pulling out books from the bookshelf and cozying up to the couch and reading for very long hours, in a way, I am like a bear going dormant for the Winter. But, I don't want to be dormant, I want to feel alive!

I have found a way to feel alive during the Winter months. I have found that if I go to the gym and put it more time in there my seasonal depression stays at bay. Yes, I am still crabby but not as crabby as I usually get during the Winter. I have found two extra classes at the gym that I love, Turbo Kick and Body Pump.

My first time at Turbo Kick, I wanted to die. I thought I was in shape. I mean I had just ran a marathon just a month or two before and I was still running at least four times a week, cycling and swimming. Boy! I was so wrong. The class is 1 hour long, just 60 minutes. Well, 20 minutes into it, my heart wanted to get out of my chest, 30 minutes into it, I stopped for a drink and looked at the clock and I thought I was about to pass out. I still had 30 minutes left. Punching, kicking, jumping, and finally abs. Sweat dripping down my back, down my elbows, my chin, I made it, 60 minutes and stronger for it. As the class ended and I went to the corner to talk and joke around with my friend, I realized that I was definitely coming back to the class. A workout like this one cannot be passed out, nope, not by me. It has been now three weeks since that first class. I am getting the choreography down and now I am able to follow more of the moves. My legs have gotten stronger, I have felt my waistline tightened up, and my arms are getting a bit more defined. A success in my book. Here is a little preview of the class.

Body Pump was another humbling experience, I have lifted weights on my own for over a year. I don't do barbie weights either, so I thought, yeah, I can do the class. I will be good at it. Not much weight is put on the bar so I thought, heck I can do it. Did I take a piece of humble pie the afternoon after my class. During the class, I was great, I was packing the iron and learning the format and the proper technique. Again with sweat dripping down my elbows, the middle of my back, down my chest, I knew this class was just for me. I loved it. I love the pain that comes when I am doing lunges and the shaking on my leg that tells me that I am working those muscles. The feel when doing the bicep work out to the tune of New Divide by Linkin' Park and how that last rep is pure pain yet as you look at yourself in the mirror and you see the slight appearance of the bicep muscle is enough to push through to the end of the song. Amazing! I love how the body responds to what you dish it. Body Pump has been changing my body, reshaping it into a tight little bundle. I am looking forward to one year from now and what my body may look like as I continue with all the different workouts.

Last years totals are in and the info is pumping me up to ramp up my mileage and numbers for 2010.

The first half of the year was tracked with Buckeye Outdoors.

Firsthalfreport

The second half of the year was recorded with DailyMile.com

Yearreport

It is so neat to see everything in one spot, makes me want to keep working out just so those numbers go up higher and higher.


Dreams of 2010

Tri12
A day doesn't go by when I don't think about my race goals for the next year. The past two years have been spectacular and I have accomplished so much that I never thought I could. I have become a runner, a slow one, but I am to the point where I consider myself a runner and friends and family come to me and ask me  advice on different subjects on running. I love being a runner. I love the feel of my body being exerted, the way my foot strikes the ground, the thoughts that swirl in my head as the time progresses and I just keep on running. I love the solitude of my training days, especially my long runs of three hours or more. Those long run days are not just a day to hit and go but a day of meditation, a day to look within myself and reach for everything I have and leave it out there on the road. Whenever I run, I can't help but think of an advertisement by Pearl Izumi running shoes that said something along the lines that you can't call it a run unless you have left everything behind on the road. The Ad depicts a runner who is sitting down at the end of a run and has blood dripping down on one leg. That is what I want to be, without the blood of course, but I want to give it all I have while I am out there. It may not look it as I am slow as a turtle but I give it all I have in my heart.

With thoughts like these, my tentative 2010 schedule has been formulated. Once again, I will focus on running but will cross-train with two goals in my agenda: a PR on my 2nd marathon and would love to get a 70.3 completed.

Ogden Marathon: Saturday, May 16, 2010

Boise 70.3: June 12, 2010**

Cache Valley Classic Triathlon: Olympic Distance: June 12, 2010 (Alternate to Boise 70.3)

Wasatch Back-Ragnar Relay: June 18-19

Spudman Triathlon: July 31, 2010*

Park City Marathon: Saturday, Aug. 21, 2010

Top of Utah Marathon: Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010

St. George Marathon: Saturday, Oct. 2nd, 2010

*It is by lottery so chances are I won't get in :(

**Haven't registered yet for 2 reasons. 1)It is quite early in the cycling season. We have snow here in town til June! It would be nice to find another later in the season but the only one that I can see is Texas in October. 2) The fee is quite out there. If I register, I will have to drop 2 marathons if not 3. 

Dreaming and planning is grand!


Running Goals

Catyawning

Every time I finish a big "race" event, I get a little sad and depressed as the enthusiasm of the race wears off and I am left with nothing to train for or to look forward to. I have to admit that I love training. Working towards something makes my day and it gives meaning to my otherwise meaningless life. I heard this from a movie recently--"I did it to feel alive!". It is not that I don't feel alive but in truth running, cycling, swimming and participating in these events gives my Type A personality something to work on.

With that in mind, I have started looking for my next big race. At first, I thought it was going to be the St. George Marathon as my neighbor told me that she had a great connection and could get me in this late in the game (it is in about a week). Unfortunately, after she made her phone calls, the answer was no. I am feeling a bit devastated and sorry for myself at the moment. I know, I should feel happy that I am given the extra time to just chill and get my feet back from my first marathon, but I am on fire! I feel on fire and I feel that I have already done the training so I might as well just get it done, but I can't. I have to suck it up and look for another event to participate in.

Consequently, I went online and that is usually a bad sign. I get looking at stuff and next thing I know I am registering and putting things down on my planner. So, what do you think I found? You know me, it has to be something crazy and completely loony toon.

The Grand Slam!

No, it is not the Grand Slam from the Dennis menu nor the Wimbledon one. It is the Utah marathon running

Grandslam

one. Yes, I am going to sign up for the Grand Slam, 4 marathons in 2010. I never thought I would sign up for 4 marathons all in one year, but I figured since I will be already training for one, I might as well register for others and get them all in. There are 5 to choose from and I think I have narrowed them down to these four: Ogden Marathon (May), Park City Marathon (August), Top of Utah Marathon(Sept), and St. George Marathon (Oct).

To prepare me for these marathons: I want to do the Canyonlands Half Marathon on March 20th and the TOU 1/2 Marathon on August 2010. 

Also, let's not forget about my other great goal: Ironman 70.3 (shooting for the Boise Ironman in June).

Everything seems to fit perfectly with the dates. What do you think of the goals?


The day is upon!

My very first marathon in less than a day!!! The big day is upon me! 22 hrs left. I have to admit: I am freaking out!!! Had an awful night with dreams about the marathon and seriously every bad scenario came to the dream from a blister, collapsed arches, to falling down! Today, I get to pick up my packet. I will have a little steak, a little rice (I don't like pasta very much), lots of water and hopefully the nerves will allow me to go to sleep around 8pm. If you see me today and I am not in the best of moods is because I am just freaking out and having a heck of a time controlling my nerves and fighting the "I am a failure thoughts".

Pre-Marathon Manifesto

Just thinking about this coming Saturday and its grueling event sends shivers down my spine and questions start popping in my head. Do I have what it takes? Am I going to start crying at mile 22? Am I going to give up at mile 23 and say no more! As I tell my friends that I am doing this event this coming weekend, thought first thought that comes to my mind--are you freaking crazy Isela! Second, you actually paid to be a part of an event that may make you cry Mommy!

The past month's runs have been packed with thoughts of of insecurities and of lack of self-confidence. Worst Each time I reach my house which just happens to be the marker for mile 21 of the TOU marathon, I try to visualize race day. I try to pump myself up and I keep repeating in my head "girl, you can do this!" The trick with it all, is that I have to believe it. I have to believe in myself. The popular cliche is so true "man is his own worst enemy". I can bring myself down before I have even started. Thus, I have decided to have a pre-marathon manifesto to help me during the marathon. 

1. I will rest the recommended number of days before my race day. Yes. This means no lifting. No swimming. No active taper days. It is going to drive me insane, I know.

2. I will drink at least 8 cups of water a day before race day and at least 6 each day prior.

3. I will not eat too much sugar in the 5 days prior race day.

4. I will try to fill my thoughts with me crossing the finish line.

5. I will not be sad because my hubby cannot be there that day.

6. I WILL stop and walk while getting a drink at the aid stations.

7. I will start slow and not kill my legs on the first 13 downhill miles.

8. When I reach mile 21 and I see my friends there, I won't cry Momma, instead I will smile and keep going.

9. When I feel that my legs are about to give up and my heart is about to fall, I will command my brain to push me forward, walking is better than giving up. Life has thrown worst things my way, a few miles of running should not defeat me. Friends, if you see me and I am ready to give up. Please, I beg you to push me forward. Do not let me defeat myself.

10. No matter my finish time, I will rejoice and pat myself on the back for accomplishing this one dream. I may never be able to fulfill my dream of visiting Scotland but by golly I should be able to finish a marathon in my own backyard.


Retouch me to Perfection

I came across this video on youTube about Photoshop enhancement/retouching. The model already looks fantastic and I would say that digital retouch is not necessary but our media believes otherwise. The video is about 5minutes long but it is worth watching. I bust my butt each day exercising and I do it not only to look good but to feel good. I have come to the realization that I feel much better after I have burned a few hundred calories and my adrenaline is pumping through my system. However, even if I spent all day long working out and eating properly (which I don't because I love carbs and I love protein and I occasionally indulge in eating pastries and cakes) I don't think I would ever achieve the smooth look that magazines portray, but I am okay with that. I have finally realized that photos in mags are not real--maybe just the ones the Enquirer prints (ha!). Enjoy the video and pass it along, our youth needs it.


Week's Training

Fell off the wagon at the beginning of the week. It happens to me each time after my Mom leaves. I was quite depressed on Monday about her leaving and coupled with life's worries, my life just wanted to shut down. So I let Monday just be an off day and I cleaned the house and putter along the house.

Tuesday, I got off my duff and decided to go out for a run. With the Marathon around the corner, training cannot be put off for long. I went out for run and ended up running 8.5 miles. It felt fabulous to be out there by myself. Sometimes I think that I have decided to take up running just to run away from home and have a place of my own to think, to work things out in my head before I explode. 

IMG_0363 217Wednesday, I hit the gym and the weights. Working the Dino arms is a constant struggle. I don't want Dino arms and I definitely do not want the jiggles. I kept to the routine and changed a couple of exercises. I saw that I was a bit stronger in some exercises such as the Shoulder Press so I made a note of that for the next time. Here is a picture of my Dino arms...see how much my Mom is laughing about them, yeah, you can laugh too :)

In addition to lifting some iron, I had a dip in the pool. It has been 3 weeks since I last swam and I knew that coming back to it was going to be painful. 2000 yards and I was done for! Swimming is not a forgiving sport, you leave it for a week and you have to work from the start again.

Thursday, I hit the road again and ran 7 miles. These 7 miles were my very first where I used my Garmin to track mile by mile. It was great to see my performance mile by mile and where I can improve the most. I want to train so that my body gets used to running the last mile the fastest of them all and having my Garmin programmed to track mile by mile allows me to see if I am accomplishing this task.

Friday, I hit the gym again for the Dino arms workout. This particular workout was a bit gruesome, not on my part but the other gym members. I forgot my iPod, therefore, I was able to hear everything and anything the monkeys at the gym did. A group of them in particular kept grunting and talking quite loudly as they did each rep. Seriously, I was afraid to go near them in fear that they would drop the weight on my foot! I can see grunting a bit at the end of a set but if you are grunting from the beginning then maybe a lower weight is better. Anyways, I will make sure that I don't forget my iPod from now on as I don't want a repeat of this again. Also, I was the only gal using the free weights during this time. I felt awkward as if I was intruding in an all "manly club". They had weights all over the place, benches all occupied and when finally I saw one empty I went to it only to find it dripping with sweat--yuck! Clean up after yourselves monkeys!  

After the weights, I went for a quick swim, 1200 yards. It felt good to be back in the water. On this particular day, the water was superb. The temperature was great, the pool was empty, except for two kids who kept climbing over the lap dividers. At one point, they crossed my lane and I almost hit one of them, lucky him that I was able to stop in time before I hit him. The parents were nowhere around and no lifeguard so I gave them my stern-mom-look and told them to be careful and not to cross the lane I was using. They were good kiddos and stayed on the other side of the pool.

Today was a short 5 mile run. I was supposed to run 14miles but with the TOU 1/2 being next week, I improvised and lessened the mileage. It was a terrific run that saw my last mile at a 7:34 pace. My fastest mile yet. I was impressed and love my Garmin even more than ever.

Next week is looking bright and I am looking forward to training and the TOU 1/2!


2010 Plans

Never been one to make plans too ahead of time, however, things may start changing soon. I want to participate in a few events next year that require me to sign up as soon as possible. One of the events is a stepping stone to one of my personal goals, a full Ironman. The event in question for 2010 is the Ironman 70.3 Boise

IronmanBoise

Although, I know that if I register I will commit and not turn back, my misconceptions lie on being fast enough to be part of it. Will I be the last one out of the water? Be the last one on the bike (most likely result)? Not finish the entire thing in the alloted time? Will I look completely stupid if I stop during the bike to take a little rest and a little drink--remember, I still don't know how to take a drink while riding. 

What should I do? Register and just give training my all and hope for the best...or wait until I am a year older and slower.

Yes, this is the point where I wish I had mentors to help me, to show me if I am doing wrong or if I should jump and test all that I am.


Registered

There is no turning back now. Eeek! Am I ready?

The goal is lofty. I want to come in at 4hrs, but I would be very happy with a 4:30 too, but a 4hr marathon would just rock my world. There is a lot of training ahead, many hours running solo. Many GUs will have to be ingested. Many songs will go through my iPod. All for one goal: to test the moxie I have. Can the Chubbette conquer this next goal?

Should the registration confirmation read: "Condolences, You are now registered for one of the most grueling events known to man. Only 10% of the world's population attempt it and although they all say they enjoyed the challenge, many of them are unable to move the next day or the next week following the event...Are you ready for the pain?"

Registration  


May's Training Totals

May seemed to have been overtaken by the Ogden Half Marathon event. As I look over the numbers, swimming took a complete back step, not a good thing for the upcoming triathlons (4 miles compared to the usual 11 or 12). I will have to fix that this month, hopefully my right arm will start healing soon.

MayReport

Running: 69.5 miles over the entire month
Pace: An average of 9:07minutes per mile
Feelings: I feel like I need to run a few more days a week, but cycling is taking a big chunk of time.

Swimming: 7050 yds.
Feelings: Pathetic in this department, it is the lowest I have swam in months. I am disappointed in myself and the lack of discipline I had this past month. I didn't wake up at 4:30am all month, so I had to skip swimming.

Cycling: 119.5 miles
Feelings: finally the weather got a little better in northern UT and we were able to get out a few times. I would like to average 100 miles each week over the next three months or so.

Spinning:
23 miles
Feelings: I am okay with a low number here as I was able to go out and actually bike rather than spinning in one spot.

Weight Training: 14 workouts. Average of 1 hr and 15minutes each.
Feelings: I am rocking the upper body weight training, I am excited about them and feel that they are definitely helping me tone up the chubs I have. I have incorporated sets of push ups in my workouts (3-5 sets of 20 push ups each). The best part, I feel that finally my arms are not just sticks poking out of my body.

I track my workouts through Buckeye Outdoors. Check out Buckeye Outdoors and sign up for a free account. You can track all your workouts in one place and then have a nifty table like the one above.


An Action Shot

Momruns2 Me wearing my sweet, hot, tights!!! Alright, so not really hot, but it is of me during the half marathon, an action shot! This picture was taken by the area where my right quad was complaining, I was probably concentrating on not crying or probably thinking, "crap, I should stop and sit down".

Wardrobe talk:planning for a race is an important part of my pre-run preparation. I have to pack everything in advance to make sure I don't  forget something important. A brief on my favorites.

Tights: I do love my tights. They are CW-X Stabilyx tights. They are snug, really snug. I have found that compression tights provides my legs with enough support and after the run my legs do not feel as tired (compared to when I run with regular running shorts). They are flashy looking but the stability they provide my lower back and around my knees make me forget completely about how tight they are and how "exposed" I may look with them on. Definitely, my favorite pair of running tights. Tip: commando is the word. 

Ball cap: my new hat made by Under Armour. I have a small head, it measures a little over 18 inches in circumference and finding a hat that fits me properly is a difficult task. I had another one that I liked but the fit was not right, I had to secure the strap at the back with a few bobby pins. A few days before the Ogden Half, I stopped by a local sports store and I decided to look at the caps. I tried a few and even at their smallest setting, they were too big. I grabbed the Under Armour one and set it to the smallest it could go, it fit! Not only that, I could wear it and the strap would stay secure in the small opening at the back of the cap. Why a ball cap? It keeps the sun from my eyes. The band around the head keeps the sweat away from my eyes and face. When running long distances, I take a sip of water and then dump a bit of water on my head soaking my hat. By soaking the hat, I stay cooler longer.

Socks Socks: I have a problem with my smallest toes, they are very close together and when running long distances, they rub, sometimes the rub is so bad that I end up with blisters. I used to have to wear moleskin to keep them from rubbing but it was uncomfortable. Then, I found the pair socks for me, Injinji socks. I love them. If I could have a pair for each day of the week, I would be a happy camper. They keep my toes separated and provide me with a blister free run. They also have no seams...anywhere! They are truly the most comfortable socks I have ever worn while running.

Shirt: just a nice tech shirt. No cotton shirts for my running. Also, I have learned that a bit of Glide on the back/inside triceps aka chubs on my arms keeps me from rubbing them row against my shirt. I prefer to use a shirt with no sleeves and with very nice sewn seams--the smaller and neater the better to avoid any chaffing.

Sports Bra: The wrong one can provide you with the worst running experience ever. No one likes anythingMomruns bouncing around. Being in the C/D of the spectrum, it is difficult to find a supportive bra, however, I have found a great supportive bra in the Fiona by Moving Comfort brand. Great support, breathable, and soft fabric that does not chaff anywhere. Tip: if you sweat copiously, I suggest putting a little dab of Glide on the n!pples to prevent chaffing.

Shoes: my shoes are the first to be packed. I am an overpronator and I have found my perfect pair of shoes in the Mizuno Wave. They provide me with a comfortable ride and with enough stability. They have now over 500 miles on them and they are looking a bit sad. I have a new pair of Brooks and a new pair of Mizunos that I have to break in and mold to my feet. Note: don't wear new shoes when doing a race/event, break them in first on a shorter runs. 

Glide: I have mentioned it a couple of times. What is it? Glide is a lubricant that prevents chaffing. It is my miracle on a stick. Let me tell you a little story, last year, when I was a *ahem* a bit chubby (okay, shut up, a lot chubby), I went out for a run in the middle of a summer day. I was happily running a 10 miler. I was wearing a sleeveless shirt, my arms kept rubbing my sides and I didn't think much of it. At mile 8, I noticed a burning on my inside arm chubs, I stopped and inspected closely, the sweat and the motion of my arms swinging were rubbing me raw. It hurt, especially with my sweat. I got home and I started searching for a way to prevent this, one way was to *ahem* lose the chub, another way was to wear a lubricant. I didn't want to wear vaseline as the stuff is a little messy and sticky and get all over the clothing, then I found Glide. I love the stuff. It works wonders. I wear it when I bike, when I run, and when I do triathlons. It is not messy, not sticky and it doesn't go all over the clothes. Perfect stuff.

Garmin Forerunner 305 or short Mr. G: It is my pace keeper, my trainer-on-demand who is always there to go with me on a run. I love seeing my performance on the go and being able to see my previous workouts.

Well, these are my favorites and what I usually pack in my running bag. What's in your running bag?


A Great Run

Today's run was phenomenal! It started as a 5 mile run but once I got to the 2.5 mile, I didn't feel like turning around. I kept going and going and finished with an 8 miler. I stopped only because I had to get home to pick up Nyah from school. It was a good day to be out there. The weather was a bit crazy but it was warm enough that I had to shed my long sleeve shirt. I came home and I even had a Garmin tan line--so cool! I have decided to make 8miles my new base run. Yes, by writing it here, I have committed to running 8 miles as my new base. It takes me about 70minutes...one day I would love to bring that down to 60minutes.

Runlog

Thoughts: I am still wondering if I have what it takes to run my first marathon this September. I know I can run 13, 14, but do I have it in me to run 26.2. Can I mentally handle the whole 26. There will be a lot of training and a lot of tears as I will have to train all alone. So far, I have run 2 hrs all by myself, but this time I would have to run 3 hrs if not more all alone while training.

The Ogden Half is in less than two weeks. I feel prepared, both mentally and physically. Right now, I am just hoping that we have good weather--I don't mind a little rain, but I do not want it too be too cold. I perform best when temperatures are a little warmer.

As a side note: yesterday while we were driving back from Choir, Nyah asked me, why I exercised. I took a moment to answer and said. Because, it is good for the body and I want to be healthy and I want to be able to run far and fast. She thought about my answer and she replied: Daddy is not healthy. He doesn't run like you do. He doesn't bike either. Is he sick Mom?


Monthly Totals: April

The end of the month arrived...way too soon. I wasn't expecting it. I am not ready for May to be here, for my Half Marathon to be here!!! I have been a slacker and haven't been training as hard as I should. I have been a wimp and stayed away from running because of the cold weather. I am going to pay for it the day after the Half, I am sure of it. The quick look for the month (as always, if you want a closer view, click on the picture to enlarge).
Aprilreport  

The numbers:

Run: 78.5 miles
Bike&Spin: 81
Swim: 20987 yds = 11.9244 mi
Strength training: mainly upper body: 17hrs 15 min
Total workout hrs: 24:11:14

Thoughts: I have picked up a few more miles running and dropped on the spinning/cycling. I am concentrating on the upcoming half and my legs need to get acquainted with the road again.
May will see more cycling as the weather starts cooperating a bit more with sunshine.

Sam and I started the 100 push up challenge this last week and so far we have week 1 behind (he is on week 3 as he was able to do more push ups than me). I was able to do 20 push ups consecutively at the end of one of the sessions (that was after doing: 10, 12, 8, 8) I felt great about that one. Unfortunately, the next day I was super sore, I guess I pushed it a bit too hard with 20 in a row but it felt great to do that. 

Another great accomplishment for the month: 8 pull ups with only 24 lbs of assisted weight! I am getting closer and closer to my goal of doing 3 pull ups without any assisted weight. Super stoked about this one also!

Overall, I am satisfied with the effort I put in during the month of April.

PS: I use Buckeye Outdoors to track my workouts. It is an easy way to track your workouts and you are able to see your work all in one table.


March Monthly Totals

Runner copy  Woosh! March went by so fast. I think it is the pressing Ogden Half Marathon that makes the days just disappear. As each day passes, I realize that my sorry butt is not ready for the upcoming "race". I want to run outside, I really do, but our weather here in Northern Utah has been the pits! Beautiful sunshine one day and the very next day 10 inches of snow. Maybe if I were a kid, in northern NY, I would be happy for the white fluffy stuff (in NY it seems they cancel school if they get one inch of snow, here, we can be drowning in it and they still expect the kids to show up to school), however, as an adult that needs to drive around and get errands done, the white fluffy stuff gets tiresome after a month or so. Not to mention, I am not hardcore enough to brave the elements while kicking asphalt.

(picture: last year's Ogden Half--my very first half marathon)

Despite the terrible weather, the monthly totals are not completely pathetic. Here is the monthly shot:
Marchtotals
It looks quite full each day--except for Sundays which is my rest day. The actual numbers:
Marchtotals2

I swam a little bit over 15 miles! Quite happy with that number. April won't be as high as I have to dedicate more time to running though.

Spinning and cycling: 140 miles or so. Not bad. If the weather cooperates, this number will start getting higher and higher as our group starts doing Saturday rides.

Running: not good at all. Just 36 miles...what I consider the minimum to keep my legs moving. Again, when the weather starts warming up, this number will increase a little bit.

Weight training: although the numbers report doesn't show this, the monthly does. I did 14 days of strength workouts. I am very pleased about this and I feel the difference. I can see changes happening. The body definitely shows changes faster when weights are involved. Again, I am eager to see what a year of weight training will do to my body.


First Ride of the Year

Moxie  The sun was shinning and mother nature was gifting us with great 60 degree weather, she threw us a little bit of wind our way to test our moxie, but we still went out. Eight of us. All happy Mammas, sporting our spandex shorts and bright jerseys. Laughter and jokes going all around. Hubby pumping air into the tires (all the bikes--he is so great!), us fixing our hair and fancy eyewear, doing last minute water preparations. A 3pm start ended up leaving closer to 4pm--that's what happens when you get eight moxie babes on their first ride of the season. We went out without a clear route, wanting to avoid the wind, we figure we could decide as we rode. Around 4pm, we rolled out, waved goodbye to the kiddos and hubbies, and went for our first cycling adventure of the year.

We decided to go up Blacksmith Fork Canyon--uphill for the first half, but sweet, joyous downhill for the Moxie2 last half. You never realize how out of shape you really are until you are going up the gradient...your lungs burn, your legs scream (specially if you did Leg workouts the day before), and you wish with every ounce of your being that you had not eaten that last cinnamon roll. But even feeling all the burn, it is not enough to discourage anyone from pedaling up the hills. You keep an eye for your friend up front and you pedal trying to catch her, trying to support her and to find support back. When she sees you or you see her and share smiles or a "hey, I am here"...your soul fills with strength, just that little extra that you needed to pedal past the next little hill.

Moxie4 Finally, at the 10 mile marker up the canyon, we congregate again, we laugh, we talk about our their pale legs, our chubs, the ins/outs of our lives, our desires for the up coming season--and in all we bond again! Roadies, friends, sisters!  The winter season may have separated us however the road and our bikes bring us back together each Spring. I love my group. Each one of these moxie gals brings joy to my life and offers me support. I say, it is a great start to another cycling season.

Sam


Spring has arrived!

The weather has turned to beautiful sunshine and toasty days. I so love Spring and Summer. I was raised in the coast of Mexico and cold weather has never really been my forte. I tend to be okay for the first month of Fall and then my seasonal depression sets in and I have good and bad days, more of the latter. I try to keep myself occupied with different activities: knitting, loom knitting (you have probably seen an increase of patterns during the Winter, yeah, it is due to me trying to keep busy), and the anti-chub pursuits aka exercise, but sometimes they are not enough. Some days I am just crabby and hubby knows to just leave me alone and he takes over the house for the day. Usually, a shopping trip makes me feel better but it is short lived. I need the sun to function. I need the heat to feel alive. I sometimes think that I am like a crocodile--need the warmth to be able to get energy to move.

The sun has been gracing us all week and temperatures have been around 40-50 degrees and it has helped me considerably. I was even able to go out for a run twice this week and tomorrow, Saturday, I will be going on my first bike ride of the season. I will most likely have to wear a jacket but the sunshine is beckoning me to jump on my bike.

On the knitting front: I have received the first 25 pages from my manuscript and I need to revise it and edit what needs edited. So far, I am very pleased with the illustrations. Also, I have been cleaning my little "hole" downstairs and have gone through most of my yarn and I am setting some aside to be donated to the local thrift store and some other that will go to a certain friend. No worries, I still have about 6 huge plastic bins...I have enough yarn probably to last me 5 years and enough sock yarn to make about 100 pairs of socks. Oh yeah, and I also have started working on the Spring issue of LKC.

Exercise this week was phenomenal! I put in about 6000 yards at the pool, lifted weights 3 times: 2 days for my upper body, 1 day for my legs, and I still have tomorrow with my Personal Trainer. I ran 12 miles--outside--so wonderful. Also I did my regular routine with the spinning class.

Tomorrow promises to be a full day starting with a session with the Personal Trainer, swimming, running, and then in the afternoon a short 15-20 mile bike ride. I love the hot weather--it allows me to do so much.

In other less important to the world news but important to me: for the first time in many, many years (about 7 to be exact) I am liking what the mirror is reflecting. I am transforming my body into what I have always wanted, not skinny-fat that weighs as much as a feather but someone with definition and muscles. I am looking forward to a year from now and see the impact weight lifting will have on my body....perhaps even some abs will start showing instead of rolls.

MarchLog

 

Spring is Around the Corner

The sun is shinning, the snow is almost all melted, and even the birds are coming back and gracing us with their lovely chirping every morning. It is getting warm enough to go out for a nice run...sans gloves! It gets me excited for all the upcoming activities: cycling, triathlons, half marathons, running and even camping!

LiftLast week's workouts rocked! Even though I was down with a cold for 2 days, the other days saw me giving it 100 percent of everything I had. I increased my swimming by 250 yards (5 extra laps) for each day, which meant that cumulative, I added about 1,000 yards to the week's totals, definitely stoked about this change!

Another huge change: my meetings with a personal trainer. He is helping me get proper posture while lifting and by pushing the weight a little higher. He showed me how to use some of the machines that I didn't know how to use, one of them, the Barbell Squat machine. Since I usually have to lift the barbell to place it on my shoulders, I lifted only 40 or 50 lbs, but since I don't have to lift the one on the machine, I was able to squat with 75lbs!!! I am so excited about this change and the way it will improve my leg strength. Another push came in the Dumbell Rows, all along I have been doing them with 15lbs and the trainer gave me a 20lbs dumbell, at first I laughed and said I couldn't do it. He said to try. I did, I had done 15reps and I wasn't tired so he suggested going up to 25lbs. I was able to complete 3sets of 12 reps with 25lbs!!! Stoked for sure! Of course there were other places where I sucked terribly such as the Australian Pull Up--couldn't do more than 8! I have to work on those a bit to bring them up to at least 12.

My weekly totals:

Swimming for this week:
8,000 yards

Run:
7 miles

Spin:
2 hrs

Weight Lifting:
4hrs (both upper and lower)

I am hoping that this next week brings sunshine so I can run outside, health so that I don't have to miss any days at the gym and I can get 10,000 yards of swimming, and lastly fast recuperation so that I can lift weights and start shedding some of the lbs so my cycling goes smoother this season.

In knitting news: I am still on break from both loom knitting and needle knitting. My hands still hurt from the sock knitting I had to do. I figure another week or so of no knitting will help my wrists. However, I am conducing a Sock Loom a Long if you want to join us. We are working on one design for the entire month so you can still join us.

Gotta jet for now but I'll come back and share with you my adventure in Bowling!


Fitness Friday

Weightlifter-woman What a week! Going back to the gym after being sick for an entire week and limping for the previous one has had an impact. You'd think that a little bit of a break wouldn't affect you much but the truth is that the body needs activity every day to keep up.

I started training this week for the Ogden Half and so far it has gone well. My legs have kept up with the training and I haven't felt totally drained of energy. Of course, I did sleep 12 hours on Wednesday night and oh it felt so good! I am excited and pumped about this half marathon--it is coming up soon and I know that it will be here in the blink of an eye. Training must continue and I have high hopes of being able to reduce my time by a few seconds even minutes.

I started using a new way to track my training it is a neat website called Buckeye Outdoors. It is a free service and you go in there and put in your workouts and it keeps track of it all. It is easier than me writing it all down (of course, I am still a dork and I still write it down on my notebook).

The weekly totals are as follows:
Run: 2 miles (3x a week) for total of 6 miles. Starting next week it will be 2, 3, 4....the weather better start getting better so I can run outside. I can't stand more than 2 miles on the dreadmill.
Spin: 45min (3x a week) I figure about 40 miles total
Swim: 5150 yards
Strength training: only 40 minutes this week--was running short on time and work had to get done at home.

Tip of the week: I picked this up from MizFitOnline. It is called the 21s. Check out her video and see how you too can apply this to your biceps workout and bring a little change to the routine. I am planning on doing this at least once a week to change things a bit.

Hope you had a good week, see you next week with another report.