Monday, March 22, 2010

Is this a bad idea?

Okay peeps, I am trying to figure out my summer schedule. I am signed up already for the Berlin Marathon. And I signed myself up for the Seahawks 12k in April to get my ass running more than 3 or 4 miles at a time.

Here is my current question (and I'm sure I'll have more):

1. Do you think it is a bad idea to sign up for a sprint triathlon (500m/12.4 mi/5k) the weekend before my marathon?

ETA: I already have another question:

2. Would it be a bad idea to sign up for an Oly Tri the weekend after I have a 100 mile ride on my STP training calendar?

ETA AGAIN: One more:

3. What about signing up for a sprint tri (1/2 mi/18 min/3.2 mi) the weekend after I have a 20 mile run on my marathon training calendar?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Seattle to Portland

So my friend Jessica, who I did the Birkie with (and by "with" I mean she did the 55k and I did the 23k and she only took 45 minutes longer than me), has convinced me to do the Seattle to Portland ride in July. I'm so susceptible to peer pressure!

So I wasn't planning on biking this summer, seeing as I have a marathon in September to train for. But now that I have someone who will ride with me... well, it will be fun! Jessica and I will ride bikes, talk about boys, and drink beer afterwards.

So once I started thinking about training for a double century (didn't I mention it was a 200 mile ride over two days?), I realized... this should be the summer I do a Half-IM.

I'll hopefully have my run base up from marathon training and I'll be forced to put in saddle miles to train for this and really, getting in the bike miles is the main reason that I have been hesitant to do a Half-IM.

This race is two weeks after the STP ride. I figure that puts my big ride two weeks out and then I can taper. And then I have August and September to finish marathon training.

What could possibly go wrong? It's not like my knee does start killing me every time I run uphill or anything!

At least the bike ride is apparently pretty flat, for better or worse (no climbing means no coasting). I actually think the days of RAGBRAI that I have done might be hillier than this course.

Hmmm, I wonder if there is pie in every town like on RAGBRAI?

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Long Distance Relay Training

I got this from the MC200 yahoo group, which for some reason I am still on, probably because I feel the need to put my two cents in every once in a while. It is sadly only attributed to someone named "Chris" but I think there are some wise relay training tips to be found.

Long Distance Relay Training
General Training:

1. At least one day a week, live on bagels, bananas, and some form of energy drink.

2. Practice rapidly entering and leaving a van without banging your knee or any other part of your leg or anatomy on the van. Work up to at least 23 of these in a row, one for each exchange. A variation of this would be to jump out of the van while it is moving and run to some imaginary starting point several blocks away. (Make sure the van is not moving too fast and you are not the driver.)

3. Practice bladder control. We will need some semblance of order for this during the race. For the experienced relay runners… practice waiting in line while exercising bladder control at the porta-potty, add some jumping around, fidgeting, and holding yourself while waiting.

4. Learn to live with (while keeping your mouth shut) all forms of discomfort, griping and criticism, especially when you are tired. A possible workout would be get really tired, preferably not running (see Run Training below), then have someone criticize you for being smelly, for failing to pickup stuff that isn't yours, for running too slow, for leaving sweaty cloths around, or needing you to run some more right now, etc. Also have this person consume or hide your favorite food and drink before you get back from the workout. You can vary this workout each week to make sure it has all the elements that piss you off the most. This is probably the most important workout in this training plan so don't skimp on it. NOTE: Married runners should be able to shorten this training.

5. Once or twice, stay up all night and act normally the next day. A variation would be to go to a party in some park on the second day and have a few beers without falling asleep.

6. Sleep without a pillow. You can substitute a roll of toilet paper or a pile of sweaty cloths, preferably a little damp, if needed. Make sure it is on a hard surface where you do not have enough room to stretch out. If you must stretch out, try an asphalt parking lot on a cool humid night. As an add-on, after a sweaty workout try sleeping without changing cloths.

7. Find a traffic jam, or, get a couple of cars running in your driveway and enjoy the gas fumes. You might include this with workout #4 above.

8. Open a can of tuna and keep it within smelling distance for at least 24 hours. This is optional depending on the diet of your fellow runners. You can substitute tuna with other odiferous products. An alternative to add into this workout would be to go to the airport (or other public facility), grab a book and head to the "head". Have a seat and ignore the aroma. Resist asking "Who did it".

Run Training
1. Borrow or buy running shoes and try them on.

2. Find a T-shirt and some shorts you can run in. Cutoff's will work. Get a pair of socks, preferably not black.

3. Get up at 5am every other day, turn on the air conditioning to get the temp down to about 45 degrees and spritz yourself with a cold water spray bottle and run a 4 mile fartlek in pitch dark with several cotton rolls tucked into your cheeks. Throw some dust around and bring in some sound bites of semis and cars honking with flood lights flashing to help make you run a bit faster.

Blogless in Seattle

I always mean to post here, but then I never get around to it. And then it gets all overwhelming when I think about how much I could write about.

So it's been two months...

What have I been up to on the training front? In no particular order:

* Cross-country skiing twice a week in prep for the Korteloppet, a 23k race in Wisconsin. A friend and I leave the city on Wednesday nights and drive an hour west to the mountains where we gallivant around the woods with headlamps on, along with a bunch of people from a local cross-country ski club. Then on Saturdays, we do a longer ski.

* The Korte was two weekends ago. It hurt. There was no blueberry juice like at the Mora. But it was still fun. The hills in Wisconsin never end! Good thing I climbed a lot of mountains in training. Me on one of those mountains:

* I have been learning how to skate ski. It looks so effortless, but dang, it is really hard. I did the Korte, classic style. Skating also involves things like having to wax my skis, so it is a little more work. But it is fun to go fast!

* I took off to Whistler in January on a spur of the moment weekend trip with another postdoc. Literally, we decided on Thursday around noon and got in the car and drove to Vancouver that night. My sister has a sweet hotel hookup at the Westin on the mountain, but to get the cheap rate ($90 for a $300 room), we usually have to book last minute. Fortunately, the postdoc lifestyle is easy peasy and no one cares when I come in, as long as I get stuff done.

* Running has been regular, but low mileage (3-4 times per week, 2-4 miles). I am officially signed up for Berlin! But already the injuries are appearing - the last two times I have run outside, I have gotten a sharp twingey pain in my left knee, especially when running up hill. It hasn't happened on the treadmill, so I am hoping it will go away on its own. But there are lots of hills in Seattle. This picture doesn't do the hill behind my house justice:

* Planning for the Spokane to Sandpoint Relay is underway! Right now I have six definites and nine maybes - I would say my conversion rate on maybes is about 50% so I still need people if anyone wants to join in the fun!

* I still drink too much beer. I blame it on hanging out with Australians. Also, leave it is to a foreigner to carry around $100 bills. That we then deface behind their backs.