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Greenville Triathlon 2011

15 Aug

John, me, Steve, Jessica

I love racing locally–so many familiar faces and no real worries about  travel.What a great race. I learned so much this time around. The more I do this the less nervous/anxious I become and just let loose and have some fun.

I prepped all of my stuff the day before and walked around the house a million times thinking I forgot something. My alarm went off at 5:00 am and we got out of the house around 5:30. Why am I up this early? This repeats through my head several times. We arrived to the race site and we meet Steve and Jessica in the parking lot. Familar faces and I get a little less anxious.  John helps me pump up my tires in the parking lot.  We wander over to the transistion area shortly after which is pitch black. Last year they had huge lights up which was helpful. But luckly I learned my lesson from Tri Latta last year and brought a flash light! Crisis averted.

What follows is the standard race day pattern–I set up my transition spot pretty quickly, get marked with my number/age, get my timing chip and slap it on my ankle, go to the bathroom numerous times.

The swim order is usually determined by submitting a 100 yd time.  I was number 251 and technically this was when I would be starting. Oddly enough, folks starting doing whatever they wanted with the entry time. I thought this was odd and caused more stress. But I can’t complain because I got to start with my buddy Sommer who stuck back with me a bit. Add on top to this a different pool start than last year…and you get some stress. All participants had to dive or jump into the water. I knew this ahead of time and practiced my butt slide into the pool. I didn’t need to break my goggles (which I saw happened to many people) or inhale a bunch of water and freak out. My pool entry was a success.

I have finally learned that triathlon pool racing is more about dodging flaying swimmers than about speed. You can have the swim of your life and quickly come to pool congestion that stops you to a crawl.  Fortunately, I did alot of passing with ease. Regardless of who I passed it boosted my self confidence up quite a bit.  My two favorites where frog kicking guy and back stroke/floating woman.

The bike went fairly well. This course is rolling hills and while I have been biking a bit…not nearly enough to really push this course. So I went at it with a fairly moderate pace knowing I had to leave something for the run.  Unfortunately my nutrition was not working at this point. I was concious of drinking a ton which worked out. But I started getting hungry about 5 miles in..uh oh. I ate a decent breakfast but can never eat a ton because of nerves. Once I get on the bike I guess my belly gets hungry.  So I  just gelled about 3 times with no other good option. I know this was a risk because too much gel causes my belly to gas up.

Transition 2 is also slower for me because I have to put my socks on for the run (don’t like riding with socks..weird I know).  The run began and my legs were mush.  This was a quick reminder that this is not a just a 5k.  As predicted my gels weren’t working and I was burping the whole time. The run course was the same as last year, two loops. I broke it down mentally into these two loops. It went by pretty quick but I was shuffling not really running. My legs were not listening to my mind to pick it up.  I saw some friendly faces on the side lines cheering me on which was great. I had a little left in me for one last sprint to the end and I was toast. I just wanted fooooood!

I  had a great time this year. I learned to not take myself too seriously and not let training control my life. I like having a race as a fitness goal otherwise there isn’t a whole lot of motivation to stay or get into shape. I’m not sure what’s next. I’m looking forward to biking and running for fun during the fall. I would like to start getting stronger for the run. I felt good progress last year but just burned myself out.

P.S. I have to give my friend Jess some props for placing second in the Novice division–she kicked some serious bootie!

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The race is coming..

6 Aug

So, um yeah..I just signed up the Greenville Sprint Triathlon..again. It is next Sunday the 14th. I cannot believe my last tri was 1 year ago…doesn’t feel that long ago. I guess it wasn’t my last race since that was in November of last year..so that makes it better?

I have a new goal for this race. Can I train and not be psycho obsessed with myself and my fitness? I have been semi-training for about 5 weeks or so. I think I have had some limited success. I will be slower than last year, I just have to understand that and deal. Also, I’m not sure my endurance is up to par..so if there is much more walking on the run and slower hill climbs on the bike, I have to be OK with that. I am not setting a new PR. I am dipping my toe in and seeing if this is for me.  Yeah, I keep telling myself that too. Then I stare at last year’s times and obsess over them. I was so disappointed last year at my minimal progress. What?! I was doing great, I just had to see the other side of slow again to notice I guess.

The self doubt and voice creeps in my head says, please just quit. You are going to embarrass yourself on all your lost progress, etc. Why bother, sitting on the couch is so much easier…yes, yes, it is.

Before I committed to do this race mentally I talked it over with John.  We discussed the pre-race nerves and that I hate them. I have all kinds of gastric distress in the morning..can’t sleep the night before. He pretty much said what any good coach would–you will get over it.  You are pretty much going to be doing this rest of your life so you better practice up.  What?!  I love that he doesn’t doubt me like I doubt myself. Will I really be that 60 year old doing a triathlon with grand kids in tow?  Haha…I hope so. I told John that a half Iron Man sounds like a good retirement goal. I think I might have the energy and time then, right?

Last night I went swimming with a friend at the pool where the race will be held. It had been renovated so I wanted to take a look and get a feel. We walked in and I realized how much longer a 50 yd/Olympic size pool is compared to the 25 I’m used to. It’s intimidating and feels like you are staring down a football field of water. Then I noticed that the pool’s shallowest depth is about 6 ft…what?! The mind games started. I didn’t want to get in to even practice. What have I done!?  But I got in and loved it. The pool was sharp–clean lines/new tile, no dirt, crystal clear water, good temp. This is going to be great. My second practice 400 was much faster than the first so, maybe I will surprise myself.

And for all you crafters out there. Here is a taste of what I have been working on. Two sad side tables have been painted grellow (greenish/yellow). Just putting the finishing touches on them.  I will share them soon!

>Spinx Half Marathon & TNT Turkey Trot 5k

14 Oct

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Woooop Woooop! Race day has come and gone. It was a fantastic ride.


I was super excited the night before..just like the last couple of triathlons. It was great because it didn’t start until 8:40 a.m. so I didn’t have to get up at 3:30 a.m.

We got a call night before from a friend who needed help with the clock on mile marker 5. Apparently the guy who was supposed to stand there and turn it on during the race start was sick. So, John kindly offered to volunteer in the morning. This kind of threw my plans off for the morning. I had expected to park, get on the trolley, and talk with John before the start. John had to drop me off and then race over to the 5 mile marker to get there in time. So I was left standing alone…

Did I mention it was freezing? It was probably in the low 40s that morning. Which for this pansy Michigander, is freezing. I didn’t want to wear a jacket or too many layers because I knew as soon as we started I would regret it. It worked out well having john at mile 5 because I just threw him my long sleeve shirt. This would never happen in a triathlon (get a penalty) so I was kind of excited about it.

I decided not to wear my heart rate monitor for the race. It had been messing with my head during training..so I opted to leave it home. I also knew there were going to pace clocks along the course so this would be helpful. The race started and I was moving pretty slow because it was such a large crowd. Once we got off Main street it started to thin out. As far as timing goes I was about a minute faster for the first 3 miles than I had anticipated. Which was not good…I needed to slow my newbie butt down. So I just settled behind some folks and cruised it.

I kindly asked one of the TNT coaches for some private coaching for this race since this was my first attempt at this distance. I didn’t want to be stupid and injure myself. So my wonderful TNT coaches/friends decided to help me out and meet me on the race course. Sarah met me on mile 4. It was a great time to have some morale boost at that mile. She stuck with me the whole way! We met Nicole around mile 9, so now I had a little group to cheer me on! I saw John at the mile 5 clock–which was great! I wanted to slow down to say hello but I couldn’t! After I passed John he quickly hopped in the car to meet me near the finish…it took him about an hour to get back downtown..with all that darn traffic–he is such a trooper.

So I was feeling pretty good for most of the race. I was getting my nutrition in just fine..which has been hit or miss during the longer runs. I wore my fuel belt because I wanted my own nutrition (which was great until about mile 12…more to come about that). It was about mile 10 or so that I was struggling. Thank God for Nicole and Sarah singing and encouraging me all the way to the finish. It’s funny because this race wasn’t really hilly but there are some inclines that are challenging. Around mile 9-13 it is most on an incline. My form (or my attempt at form) started deteriorating around this time..so then my hips started burning!! Lean forward, lean forward!

Around mile 12 I could not take the fuel belt any longer. It was driving me crazy. I was really ready to throw it on the ground and just cut my losses with the darn thing. Nicole kindly carried it for me. I was a bit embarrassed to have her take it…but she offered…so I let her! 🙂 Oh, it was so sweet to have that thing off. It felt like I lost 10 pounds.

I slowly shuffled closer to the finish line. With about .25 of a mile to go…I just sprinted to the end. The race finish was fun because it ran around the Greenville Drive field (minor league baseball team). So I got a chance to run on the field! Super fun. I really didn’t get a chance to take it in because all I could see was that sweet finish line.

My secret goal for finishing was 2:30. I figured that was reasonable for a first half marathon at my pace. I missed my goal..but not by much! I finished in 2:31:32. Not terrible.

Thanks to Nicole and Sarah for being my on course support! Definitely would have been much slower without you. Thanks to my hubster, ole Johnny B! He is the best sideline support a girl could ask for! Although..I think it’s time for us to buy him a cow-bell. hint hint. :p

I also ran a 5k the weekend after the half. I kind of kicked myself for signing up for a race right after a half marathon. But it was only 3.1 miles…suck it up. This race was super fun because it was very family oriented and not very competitive. Which is a great way to remind myself that this is supposed to be fun! I really didn’t have any expectations for this race other than beating by PR from the first 5k I ran in Dec. 2009. I finished that one in 39:46. I wasn’t too worried.
I again opted out of the heart rate monitor…mainly because my plan was to push it. I really haven’t pushed myself too much in the speed department so I thought it would be fun to try. I did my first mile in 9 minutes….what!? I didn’t think I was capable of running that fast..haha. Then I realized I need to slow down or I am going to be walking. So I did and finished in 30:34. About 9 minutes faster than 2009…can you believe that? I was shocked at the progress. It’s hard because everything in endurance sports is so incremental…that I always just feel slow.
I really couldn’t have asked for anything better. Two great weekends of racing and I was feeling great.
Right now I am taking it easy but trying not to lose all of my motivation. I really needed a break physically and mentally. I am not on a schedule right now with my workouts which is a problem. Starting soon I am going to make myself a schedule so I can stay with it. The fun thing in a little down time I have been practicing Bikram (hot yoga) again. A new studio opened in Greenville so I got a great promo deal for a couple of months. I love hot yoga. One more time…I love hot yoga!
Before you knock the yoga my friends…let me just say this. 1.5 hours of yoga in a 100-105 degree room with 47% humidity or so. Your heart rate is elevated just to cool off the body. Also, you are much more flexible in the heat. You sweat and it is amazing…the most purifying sweat you can get. Keeping sweat out of my eyes has been a challenge…maybe I should wear my visor in there? But is is making my legs, core, and arms stronger..so I am digging it.
Other news:
John and I are staying in Greenville for Thanksgiving. We will be hopefully joining another couple and cooking a small dinner. We really need the rest, especially John and his crazy work schedule. I am really looking forward to it.
We also took Rufus on a trail for the first time last weekend. He did great! We let him on the extended leash….which he never gets. But he did great. He stayed right in front of us and kept looking back to make sure we were coming…love it!
Happy Thanksgiving!

>Why are you doing this?

14 Oct

>So, I have been keeping my little running challenge kind of a secret (well I guess posting on facebook isn’t really a secret). But, I really don’t go on about it with friends or colleagues. But when I do mention that I will be running 13.1 miles on Halloween weekend…it usually follows with wow, good god, why!? I mean, uhh that’s great!?

Why do I get up every weekend when we could sleep in? Why do I haul my self to a track/treadmill/gym/pool/bike daily? Do I love every minute of it, no! (I think the moment of enjoying all of my workouts ended in February 2010 right about the time I started the triathlon challenge. ) Do I feel good after every work out? No. Does it make me a better person? I think so.
Why do we want to always make ourselves comfortable? Did we get put here on this earth to just please ourselves? Exercise is a discipline. If I can change my schedule daily to squeeze in a run, then it really does highlight other areas that need discipline as well. But without challenging myself with hard efforts would I be able to see this?
Most athletes know that their sport is mostly the mental game. You train yourself to accept some pain and just do it. I think there is alot to be said in life to. Move on, push strong and you will learn more about yourself than you think. Also, to be fair, I have spent a lot more time with God while out on the trail. It’s just me, him, and that pavement. It really doesn’t get better than that.
I think I am ready for the race. I have ran the course twice now. The second time around was much better. I had to do the walk-run method..but it actually made me faster! So I think I am going to try this for race day as well…we shall see. Right now I am tapering..which is always nice! My goal for finishing is 2.5 hours. I probably shouldn’t have a goal since this is my first half marathon…and finishing should just be enough. But that is not going to happen…so 2.5 it is! I may be disappointed but it’s worth the fun of trying to meet that goal.
I am still learning about my body and it’s nutrition needs. I think triathletes have to have more nutrition while racing than runners. I feel like I could eat a cheeseburger on a bike and be fine on a run. Just running…ehhhh not so much. The last long run my stomach was making a sloshy sloshy sound. I have always heard of the dreaded slosh sound…but never truly got to experience it’s glory. I was eyeballing bushes the entire rest of the route at that point. Once we got to the road..i.e. no bushes, I had to stop all liquids, gels, etc. This method seemed to work. My belly mellowed out and I was fine. Could I truly survive the horror of something going wrong on Augusta Rd.? I hope I don’t have to find out.
So race day is in a week in a half! I am super excited. John is going to come out too! So it will be great to have some support as I cross that finish line.
P.S. I hate to reference a blog within a blog. But our old friend Bret wrote this awesome post to a couple of friends who are doing a marathon. Bret I loved your post. I hope you don’t mind that I will share it here: http://www.eighteenforty.com/1/post/2010/10/an-open-letter-to-erica-froman-and-chris-mathews.html

>I’ve debated that I would like to keep blogging

2 Oct

>Helloooo there–brace yourself for a long post.

I like to read blogs. At one time I had a personal blog that shared our life with friends and family that lived far away. I think the last time I updated that was about 2 years ago… (sorry guys). I miss writing to folks. Specifically, I miss keeping a history of what’s going on in my life. I love reading about what Lynne and John were like 2 years ago.
So, what will this blog include you might say? Well I hope to discuss my ongoing journey into racing and fitness and add in some other happenings along the way. I have learned a ton about myself this year and would like to document that junk.
Hmmm so what has happened since Tri Latta? Well, I did the Greenville Sprint in August. Mom Bosma was in town for the weekend and it so happened that she got to see me race. It was awesome having her and John cheering me on. It was also amazing to race a second time. The nerves were still pretty bad before the swim but, I felt like it was 1000X easier once you know what to expect. It was perfect weather for that race with temps in the 70s and overcast (which was so awesome since it was in the 90s earlier that week). I did well overall. The distance was shorter than the last sprint..but I shaved 45 minutes off my time or so. This just really emphasized how I bombed with hydration the last time.
I also got the pleasure of mentoring the new season of triathletes with TNT. Which I think I learned more from them..then they did from me. 🙂 That was a blast. I continued to train with folks and share my newbie knowledge to help encourage folks. So much fun! They completed their races recently and raised money to fight blood cancer and did an awesome job.
So, this leaves me with the end of my first tri-season. I had a decision to make. Keep going and try another race..or something else. I didn’t want to lose my overall fitness. This is the best shape I have been since highschool. 🙂 And I love endurance sports…in fact I think my body is built for this with extra fat reserves.
So my next challenge is to run the Spinx RunFest half marathon on October 30th. The race will be in Greenville, which is great. There is something to be said for waking up in your own bed and going to a race…wonderful!
Yep, so I have been running alot more. I have a love/hate relationship with running. I love it and have been running on and off since high school. I hate it..because I have always managed to get injured at any given moment. Me and physical therapy have been friends many many times.. My hope is that I will become a better runner if I have to do it more. It remains to be seen if this will actually happen. So far with longer distances…comes slower lynne. If I’m going to run 10 miles I’m not going all out at any point…or I am not going to get it done.
I actually am loving running longer distances. I have never before experienced a longer run until this point. When I am running over an hour a crazy thing happens where my heart rate drops and I am just moving…it’s not hard..or easy.. its just happening. I feel like God has given me this wonderful sport to reflect on him and just enjoy.
Unfortunately, I have been battling some aches and pains. I purchased a new shoe because I was having IT band issues and I needed a new shoe. I did not get fit correctly and have been trying to make these new/sad shoes work. So I have spent countless hours figuring out my shoe dilemma. Fortunately there are some kind professionals in the Greenville community that are steering me toward the shoe for my body. I just bought the Nike TriMax and ran 10.5 miles today. So far so good–I have my fingers crossed.
Speaking of 10.5 miles…that is crazy. I have never ran that long before. It was an interesting experience. The first 3 miles were awful…there were some peaks and dips of energy. I am still working on getting my fuel right. I feel like after 1 hour of exercise my body burns calories at an accelerated pace. I’m usually starving..even after gelling every 45 minutes.
About mile 8 I was hoping one of the cyclists on the trail would get close enough that I could borrow their bike and finish…why on earth was I on my feet this long? There is no way I would walk 10 miles, why would I run? But I got it done..and I can still walk. So progress, right?
Switching gears here. I posted a video from a masters swim clinic. I have lots to work on! First my bottom is too low so I need to push my chest into the water so I am more horizontal. This will save some energy with the kicking and just help my efficiency. I have to work on my stroke too. I should be scooping the water more..like I am pulling over a barrel. Swimming habits are really hard to break..but I will keep at it. I am going to try to start swimming with these folks once a week. One visit and I already got so much feedback. It is super intimidating though because these folks are ex-high school/college swimmers. But I’m not going to get better unless I get out
there.

>Mission Accomplished!

19 Jun

>



Hello there!

Tri Latta tri has come and gone so I thought it was only fair to post my victory blog entry for folks interested in more detail. As most of you know I finished my race!! 28:56 on the swim, T1 3:37, bike 1:04:37, T2 3:14, and run 41:18…hurray! I guess this is a good start to start widdling down my time. 🙂

The TNT experience was wonderful! I meet some great folks and hopefully some lifelong friends! Our little team really stuck together and encouraged one another. I really struggled with open water swimming for about a month but my team helped me push through.

Speaking of open water, I did it! I had a fantastic swim with our team the Tuesday before the race. John also helped me conquer my fears by taking me to the lake and helping me with treading/floating etc. I probably went out there a good 8 times before the race…and all that hard work really paid off.

Alright, here are some details from race day:
The alarm went off at 3:30 am…can you believe this? Honestly, I don’t think I have ever gotten up this early. We headed down to the lobby for a group photo around 4:30am…and off to the race site. The race started at 6:30 a.m.

Once we arrived at the race site I realized I forgot a flashlight (even after Sarah suggested it). So we were wandering around in the dark. Fortunately, we were behind someone who remembered the flashlight. Oh, and the bugs. Seriously, it was like being in a jungle. Now, I know why bug spray was on the packing list (and I forgot that too)….live and learn.

Once we got to the race site I started setting up my transition area. Had to do a few things I should have done the night before (filled gel flask). Then headed to get chipped and markered..and then to the line for the porta-Johns..mmmm.

Seriously, I was so nervous at this point I really thought I was going to throw up. But John helped me calm down. Our coaches had just arrived at this time too. They drove all the way up to help cheer us on! So fun!

Eventually we wandered over to the start area for the swim. The first wave had already gone out. All of a sudden I see all the yellow caps line up (that would be where I should be) and I am not there…. So, I am hustling all the way over (but had to steal a smooch from John first..:) Seriously, I had about 3 minutes before we got in the water. The bonus of this was that I had zero time to think about what I was doing. The horn went off and there we go!

I managed to stay all the way to the right and not really get in anyone’s way on the way out. There was a girl in front of me who was sorta freaking out and rolled over on her back within about 5 minutes. I could not get around her. It was about this time that I started freaking out because I saw her go over to the kayak. I don’t know if I started getting flashbacks to Sarah’s kayak…but I really wanted to get in that kayak! Nope, had to keep going.

So I definitely had to do a little doggie paddle to gain my composure and some floating. I really could not get into a rhythm..felt like I was fighting my way across the water the whole time. I realized that in the pool I am so comfy that I breathe every third stroke..which is great. But, in the open water when I am hustling I need to breathe every other stroke… Well, this is incredibly inefficient to me. But, I just went with it and breathed on the same side the whole time… But, I finally got to the pointy buoy that was the turning point to head back.

Now, somewhere in this turn I got all disoriented. I didn’t swing out all the way to the safe right side…but started meandering over to the left/middle of the chaos. Then I get about 4 minutes into the swim and realize I am headed the wrong way! When I was sighting, apparently I was looking at the buoy on the opposite side that I came from. I wandered half way between the buoys and started to see the on coming swimmers! Fortunately, I figured this out way before I got too close. So when I got back on track I was right in the middle of the chaos. Got pushed, hit, choked with water, trying to fight my way back to the right. I finally just said screw it..I’m out here whatever, go around me.

Fortunately, there was a beautiful sunrise happening at this time to focus on. I finally just pushed through and got to the shore…hallelujah!

The bike was awesome! I felt pretty strong for most of it and passed a bunch of people. I was playing catch up/tag with a few folks…we just started laughing about it on the course. On your left…again…. I almost took out some people that didn’t call out when they passed…I almost said some lovely words to them too…

The course that we were on was extremely narrow. When we would turn corners I was getting stuck in the clog of bikes. I was super excited because I thought I was going to get it done in just under 1 hour.. but the finish area was ridiculous. There was a bunch of people not knowing what they were doing diddling around (not that I’m some expert…but come on folks!). I have to figure out how to avoid this in the future..this whole mess added a good 4 minutes to my time.

The run was rough. I was having some stomach issues…on the bike. I think maybe this was the most gel I had ever consumed in one session. I don’t know what was going on. It was so hot that I didn’t want to drink. I tried..but it didn’t happen. So by time the run was happening I was dehydrated..like I have never been dehydrated in my life. Fortunately there was water on the course that save me. I had to walk and run…ahem I mean, shuffle the course.

The finish line was glorious! I saw John and started crying at the end. He thought there was something wrong. I was just so happy to see him and to have accomplished this goal…what a journey.

After many, many cups of liquid I started feeling better…I was not really with it for a good 20 minutes. We ate some snacks and hit the road.

What a great experience. There has been so much support from friends and family (financially and emotionally). It brought John and I closer (all those years as an athlete payed off for him…so he could push his wife when she was breaking down). Most importantly, it raised funds to help fight blood cancer.

If you are thinking about doing an endurance event I would highly recommend TNT. The staff/coaches are amazing. I could not have done it without my team!

P.S.
For those of you that are asking what’s next?
I’m continuing to volunteer with TNT through this new season. I’m the mentor for the group headed to the Nations Tri in DC (Olympic Distance). We have some really talented and excited folks coming in. I can’t wait to encourage and see these athletes push themselves toward this amazing goal!
Personally, I’m planning on doing the Greenville Sprint in August. And a certain coach is pushing me to do Hickory Knob, an Olympic distance in October…so maybe that will be on the horizon as well. 🙂

thanks for reading!

>Almost there!

21 May

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Sorry it has been awhile…life has been hectic, but good! So much has happened since my last blog post. I will try to fill you in on the details. First and most importantly, I reached my $2500 goal in April!!!! Thank you all for your generous contributions and support! I was so happy that I actually went above my goal. By time I deposit all the contributions I will be near $2800!

Here are a few other highlights:
-I got a road bike! As you can see by the picture..it is awesome! 105 Shimano components…mmm lovely for a starter bike. As you can tell, I have turned into a bike lover.
-I had a nasty bout of tendinitis in my right knee..I was out of commission for a good 2-3 weeks. Unfortunately, it has flared up AGAIN! So, I am out of commission with the running and biking until it feels better. At least I have the meds from the first doctor’s visit
-I am struggling with the open water swim. I had a panic attack during my first open water swim. Well, I wouldn’t call it a swim, more of an attempt to swim. Our poor coach Sarah was being so patient with me…but I freaked out. I eventually had to get out of the water and get in her kayak…sad. It was just too much. The dark yuck water, the depth, and nothing to hold on to in case of emergency. I am still working on this and hope to beat it soon. This is the hardest thing I have ever done…the only thing I am more freighted of is roller coasters.
-Keep posted…I am almost there!!