Sunday, March 25, 2012

Riding Lefthand Canyon

I finally tackled Lefthand Canyon today. If you are from Colorado you have probably heard of Lefthand Canyon, it's a fairly long steady climb. It was suggest by Coach Charley and seemed like a great challenge to take on.

It was a long climb and a long descent.

We rode through Ward which is this crazy little mountain town, I am bummed we don't have any pictures of it. We aren't very good at taking photos while riding.

Lucky for us the weather was nice and mild and the views were beautiful.

On the way down we passed Hall Ranch Trail where we like to run when we need to get in some hills.

It was a challenging climb and I would love to take it on again.

Do you have a favorite ride?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Triple Brick #2

On Saturday Cory and I tackled our second triple brick of the season. This one was longer than our last, with a 20 mile bike ride immediately followed by a three mile run. Repeat that three times and you have a pretty tough workout, especially when the wind really picks up by the third set.

We are lucky that my mom and dad will puppy sit and let Cory and I swim bike and run around their picturesque neighborhood.

It was overcast on Saturday but still in the mid 70s so it was great conditions for a workout (except for that wind)

The first set was fairly easy, it was nice to break up the workout into smaller chunks.

Multiple bricks are a nice way to work on running off the bike. We tried to run hard for the first mile and half off the bike then finish the last mile and a half easy.

Second set was a little harder but I still felt strong.

It was nice to run around a little lake, tempting to try some open water swimming!

Third set was much harder, I need some more TITS (time in the saddle) as I was sore on the bike. I rode my road bike this weekend as riding my tt bike is still very uncomfortable, good thing I have a retul fit on Friday!

I was happy to be done after out third set and even happier to enjoy a BBQ with my family.

Do you do multi-bricks?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Happy last day of Winter

We have been experiencing crazy warm weather lately. I know many people have been getting really weird/horrible weather, and while I have enjoyed our unseasonably warm weather and getting my workouts done outside, I am nervous about what it will mean for our spring/summer.

We are cooling down for a few days but then back to warm, nice weather. And while the warm weather makes training easier it does remind me that we are getting closer to Ironman Coeur d'Alene, just 97 short days away. It makes me nervous, will I be ready in time?!?!? I sure hope so.

In the mean time I am enjoying the spring flowers

and new strappy sandals.

We completed our 20/3 triple brick this weekend and enjoyed catching up sleep, but more on that later. This week has a focus on recovery before we head into a new phase of our training. We are moving from base building phase:

The BASE BUILDING PHASE is used to build the aerobic capacity. Although longer duration workouts at slower pace and intensity are predominant, there will be some training that will test your anaerobic base. Specific emphasis will be placed upon each discipline (swim, bike, or run). Depending upon when you begin your training schedule and your level of fitness, the Base Building Phase generally makes up the bulk of your training schedule

to Capacity Building Phase:

The CAPACITY BUILDING PHASE emphasizes developing your anaerobic capacity and increasing your lactate threshold level. Although you will have long aerobic sessions, speed and intensity will increase. Your weekly training hours will increase and 2 a day workouts will become a daily routine. Bricks and transition workouts will also become a regular part of your training during this phase. Your workouts will be more challenging and focusing on race pace.

So more intensity and time training. Wish us luck! I haven't seen a schedule yet but I am curious for what it will be like.

What is your weather like? Are you looking forward to spring?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Week 19 Ironman Coeur d'Alene Training

Only 104 days until IMCDA! we are getting close to double digit count down, GULP! I am still waiting for my training volume to ramp up, it seems like we have been in a holding pattern for a while now. We are now in the last week of a big block before a recovery week. We then start a new phase of training, Capacity Building Phase. My dogs think we need less training and more couch time!

The plan for this week is:

Monday Hip and core exercises
Tuesday am: 2900 yd swim
pm: track practice: 7-8 miles plus Hip and core exercises
Wednesday am: 75 min spin class
pm: Vinyasa Yoga plus hip and core exercises
Thursday am: 75 min fartlek ladder run
pm: 2850 yd swim plus hip and core exercises
Friday am: 90 min spin class
pm: strength training hip and core exercises
Saturday Triple brick, bike 20 miles quick transition to 3 mile run, repeat 3 times.
Sunday Run 12-16 miles, not sure yet.....
pm: Vinyasa yoga

looks like it should be a good week but I am ready for some longer bike rides!

What does your week look like?

Monday, March 12, 2012

Changing Plans

Unfortunately this weekends plans were thrown off course. Cory and I had planned to drive down to Salida Saturday morning for the Run Through Time Half Marathon Trail Race. I was excited for this race and while I knew it would be hard, I was excited for the challenge and to see how I would do in this type of race.

Friday night we drove up to my parents house to drop our dogs off for some puppy sitting.

Even though we weren't leaving until morning, I don't think my mom and dad would appreciate us dropping off our dogs at 4 am.

After dropping off the "kids" we grabbed some sandwiches from a little shop near my parent's house to eat on the way home. We got home and headed to bed early since we had an early wake up call. I will save you the gory details but Cory spent most of the night up very sick. Poor thing ate something that his body wasn't happy about. We discussed what to do about the race. Cory understandably said he wasn't up for running, while I was fine I didn't want to have to drive six hours by myself to run (or have Cory drive me while sick) after losing a lot of sleep myself. We made the difficult decision to miss the race and DNS. These things happen but it was a bummer. The really sad thing was that by 7am when we got up Cory was feeling completely better but there wasn't enough time to get to Salida for the start.

The good news was Cory was feeling good enough to get some training in and it was BEAUTIFUL out so we grabbed our bikes and rode a nice 60 miles out around Boulder.

On Sunday we made up for missing our half marathon by running 15.5 miles along one of my favorite paths.

I can't wait for the trees to get their leaves, I am ready for spring! The weather has been so warm that I ran in a tank and got a slight sun burn. I would have liked to head to a hillier trail but we were limited on time so kept in simple.

After our run we had a lot of errands to run but an iced coffee made it painless.

Have you had to DNS a race?

How was your weekend?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Getting excited…..for the Run Through Time

Cory and I are trying to finalize our plans for this Saturday’s Half Marathon. We will be running the Run Through Time trail half marathon in Salida, Colorado. In my great planning for this race I didn’t realize it was 150 miles away from Denver, whoops! Looks like we will be taking off on Friday and staying the night in Salida. I am excited though because I have never been there before and it sounds like it’s beautiful.

I am a bit nervous about how difficult the course will be, it’s mostly technical trail, very hilly and sometimes covered in snow. This is my first official trail race as well, I am trying to get used to racing on trails so that I can complete a ultra later this year, but I am just SO SLOW on trails that I am not sure I will make the time cut offs. I am hoping this race will teach me a lot and hopefully build some confidence.
Acording to the race director the trail conditions are:
2 mile course is 100% dry. The half marathon course was 95% dry as of 3/4 a.m. There are some hard packed snowy spots on an uphill in the half marathon from mile 8-8.5. This may be muddy race day. The marathon is ~80% dry as of 3/3. Marathoners will very likely encounter sections of mud and a little hard packed snow and some ice between miles 5-7. Miles 13.5-19 are 60% snow, with some ice spots in the marathon. This snow was ~2” deep untracked on packed tire tracks on 3/3. Marathoners follow the half marathon route to the finish for the last 6.3 miles, so marathoners will encounter a snowy uphill with mud at mile 21-21.5.
We expect a warm week of weather and some of the snow and ice will melt this week.

That doesn’t sound too bad for the half but there is some snow in the forecast. But I figure the more difficult the better, the second half of the ironman marathon won’t be easy!

Have you ever done a long distance trail race? Any advice for a beginner?

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Waterton Canyon Trail 14ish miler

Cory and I were excited to try out the Waterton Canyon Trail. We had heard really good things about it but it's been closed so Denver Water could dredge Strontia Springs Reservoir.

The trail just recently reopened and I was excited to hear that the trail was clear of ice and snow. The trail is flat and easy for about 6 and a half miles up to the reservoir after that it connects up with Colorado Trail so you can make your run as short or as long as you like.

It was sunny and in the thirties when we started but the wind was bitingly cold. It was nice to get into the canyon and have some protection.

It was beautiful and not as packed as I thought it would be, we only saw a few other runners and mountain bikers.

We got to the dam where we were told in the summer big horn sheep gather, and kept heading up the canyon.

Where we ran into this:

And this

And much more of the same. We set out intending to run 16 miles but were walking more than we were running through the snow so decided to cut it a bit short and head back. We made it 14.5 miles and called it a day. I am sore but happy to have gotten some miles in.

Tomorrow has a swim bike brick on the schedule, I hope it won't be too windy!

How was your Saturday?