Out on a Lark

giant road bike
The weekend is here! I squeezed in 33 miles on my new road bike before the rain. I was going to take Paradise Loop but missed the turn and ended up in Larkspur, which is also a lovely destination. I fell down twice because I am going from commuter bike to the road bike (clipless pedals!) It was a scenic adventure. Bike rides always end up that way!
Alto Bowl
I took a break at the Alto Bowl Trailhead, which looks like a great place for a little run.
On Sunday I did a drizzle run up to Twin Peaks. It is not quite the highest elevation in San Francisco. Check back next week for that one!
Panhandle to Twin Peaks


Runner's Kick

I had a short swim yesterday and a friend to analyze my stroke said that my legs were bending at the knee and sinking too much. Runner's Kick! That is why sometimes I feel like the Bermuda Triangle is following me when I swim. I will try the vertical drills and fins again - stretch those ankles! At least my arm stokes are coming along.

Do you have Runner’s Kick?
Triathlon Kicking Drills

I have a long ride coming up in 6 weeks. 65 miles is a metric century and the training is similar to a regular century:
Training for 100 miles
Beginner Cycling Training Program - Month 1

This is a lot of training to think about but actually, I have a chance to focus on the upcoming event. So instead of doing a 20 mile run on the weekends, I'll do a 10-12 miler to keep the endurance, and do a long bike ride. The swimming is something I can do on alternating days with a brick workout on the bike. 1-2x week I'll do a speed drills and hills. Keep it simple!


Rain Day - Indoor Tri!

What to do when it's raining cats and dogs? Do an indoor triathlon at the gym!

1. SWIM 1/2 mile: 40 minutes

2. BIKE 10 miles: 40 minutes
93% 4min/mile pace 15mph 145 watts 85RPM
GU after 5mi, refill water bottle - after 10 refill with Nuun

3. RUN 3 miles: 26:19 minutes
101% 7mph


Swimming and Heart Rate Training

Earlier I was concerned about a discrepancy in my MHR (maximum heart rate) while swimming as compared to running yet feeling out of breath nonetheless. Well apparently, we have MHRs for different sports. It has to do with the amount of muscle mass being used to propel the body, gravity, buoyancy. In Total Heart Rate Training by Joe Friel, he states that Lactate Threshold is more effective at measuring training zones and not necessarily heart rate. As an athlete gets fitter, their heart rate is lowered as the body becomes more efficient at performing. This is a great reference book.


Building Phase

Slowly ramping up the miles again. This last week and a half has been low energy due to the low-carb diet but managed to shed another 5 lbs. That means happy joints not getting pounded with that extra weight on the trails, easier to pedal up hills and a better form in the swimsuit! Swimming was a struggle this week. I can get a good slice and push through the water but then my pull is weak, and I think I have a "runners kick". The finis paddles are great for making me aware of the stroke mechanics. I alternate 50 meters with them. I'm stoked about the tips that Kevin just posted! I'm going to strech my ankles, keep my knees straight, point my toes, kick from the quads and hips, keep my pull to the outside, keep my head down, slice, rotate, breathe, slice pull, slice, pull, slice, rotate, breathe...

miles and miles...


Recovery Zone

I'm taking it easy this week. I ran faster than I ever ran before for 2 hours straight last weekend so I'm pretty stiff. Day 2 post-race was actually worse than day 1. I don't do the cold ice baths thing - I prefer the contrast shower (hot/cold, hot/cold) and a nice balm. What really helps is last night I did a mild run and a mellow stretch. Today I feel way more flexible. When I'm ready I'll resume speedwork with more focus on race pace and heart rate zones. Seeing the benefits even with a minimal amount of workouts is pretty motivating.

This is also low-carb week. Doing Phase 1 of SBD again as a way to tune-up the eating habits. The Squeeze and I did it last year and dropped 5 lbs instantly which didn't return. It's the only diet I've done where you're not even hungry or craving anything. I've already dropped 7 lbs and it has only been 3 days into it...weird! It's not water weight because now I have a digital scale that measures all that. Perhaps it's an afterburn effect of the thousands of calories burned on race day!


Race Recap

Kaiser Permanente San Francisco Half-Marathon
This year supporting the Koret Family House, The Harbor Light Center for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, and Support for Families of Children with Disabilities.

2009 Kaiser Permanente SF Half-Marathon

5:45am: almost got locked out of my apartment with all my gear inside. Toast and coffee.
7:45 am: The tall-kitchen trash bag and Nike's look hot! Stand in line for 15 minutes to use the portajohns...the time it takes someone to finish the 5k!
8am: 6 minutes walk to the starting line
Mile 1-3: Obstacle course around the walkers
Mile 4 to beach: Wide open and all downhill. Here is where I make tracks. The negative splits might be good for flat courses, but what I've learned is to go with the terrain and adjust to what's there.
Great Highway: Fill the tank - Gu, Nuun, Sport Beans with Caffeine. Hydrate. The inner coach says, "If you are running behind people that can still have breath to chat, then you aren't racing! Get out in front, girl! Push that pace, this is your third one so go for it!"
Mile 9: Aren't we there yet? Stay focused. Where are my toes?
Mile 10: Yes! Sub 2hr here I come!

2009 Kaiser Permanente SF Half-Marathon

Mile 12: Here is that hill I was warning you about...
Mile 12.5: Must...reach...finish...
Mile 13.1: SCREAM!

Mile 14: Yay! sub 2hr finish - now jog three miles to get back to where my bicycle is parked. Dive into some curly fries, wash down with accelerade and nap.

Last Year: 13.1mi / 2:17:33time /10.5 avg pace /HR 169 /rain, no chip timing
This Year: 13.1mi / 1:55:45time /8:50 avg pace /HR 180 /great weather, chip timing

How did I take 20 minutes off my PR? Same weight* both races, but I did speedwork training techniques gleaned from Hal Higdon and Bart Yasso.

*Same weight but different body composition. More muscle, less flab.

May in Pictures

May is a long haul with all the events: Bike to Work Day , the BoMF Gala , the Alcatraz Classic, the art auction I was in for HH , and fina...