Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tour to Tucson and Sponsor Pics

Lately I have been starting to feel really good! My leg has not bothered me in a couple weeks and I am starting to pick up the training and get in Ironman mindset! HOWEVER, last weekend I decided to ride 118 miles from Phoenix to Tucson with a group of about 30 people. Some I knew and some I didn't, but I figured what the heck, it's an adventure and it'll be fun right. WELLLLL, yes and no. Overall I had a great time. It was H-O-T, but there was good company and we were all suffering together. The course started at Lifetime Fitness in Tempe and was broken into 5 legs, which makes for 4 stops along the way to rest, potty, eat or whatever else you need to do to get your mind back in the game. The only unfortunate insident of course involved me. About 22 miles into the ride, after our first stop in Queen Creek, the person drafting me from behind was riding with his front wheel next to my back wheel. DRAFTING RULE #1 DONT DO THIS!!! Anyway, I reached down to get my water bottle and the guy clipped my wheel and I went crashing down at 21 mph. It was not fun. I was scraped up and in shock. Initially I was freaked out because I really just didn't want to get injured again... I mean come on I just got back into it from an injury!!! So I kept my cool when I got up until I got in the car with our SAG guy who drove me to WAL-MART and I kind of broke down a tad. Not much though. At Wal-Mart everyone was checking out my bike to make sure it was ok. My wheel was bent and spinning very wobbly, but I decided I was going to tough it out and push that thing all the way to Tucson like my life depended on it. There was no way I was going to sit in the car for another 6 hours while everyone else got to bike! AND I didnt have any broken bones right!!! So it took a lot of energy, probably twice as much energy, to push a bike that wanted to wobble side to side straight to Tucson. Man on man was it tough, and at times people were passing me not even pedaling, but I made it and even did a 10 minute run when we got to the Westin La Paloma in Tucson. I felt great, exept my scrapes hurt really bad! The next morning I woke up and felt like I got hit by a truck. I had whiplash and the left side of my body was throbbing, but I got up and ran 90 minutes anyway... and I had a GREAT run... go figure. I'm still confused. This week has been great though, since it is a recovery week thank God! I've stayed out of the pool until today in order to let my skin heal a bit and have been doing light biking and running, but I feel really great! I know... what the heck?!?!?!

So if you're looking for a great ride from Phoenix to Tucson, here's the course in detail

This weekend I'm going to Flagstaff to train and get out of the heat. I can't wait!



Saturday, June 13, 2009

Endurance Princess on the Move

Yep, it's been a while since my last post, but I promise I have lots of acceptable excuses :)

First off, I am back in Arizona and loving the heat and sunshine like I've never seen the sun or felt the heat before! It's amazing, when I look at the weather each morning the five day forcast shows the same little cartoon picture of a sun every day with temps differing from maybe 1 or 2 degrees. What?! No rain, no isolated t-storms, no windy, nothing but sun and more sun. Which seriously is fine by me for, um, eternity! After last winter I'm down for living in Pleasantville for a loooooong time!

That being said about the weather, training has been going great here so far. The best part is that I don't have to freak out about if it is going to be tornado-ing on Saturday and having to move my long ride to another day and mess up my entire week of workouts! I am a woman of routine... and I like it that way! I've been covering the hills of Ahwatukee at least three times a week in the early morning on my bike, running my old favorite courses and swimming OUTDOORS (can you tell I'm super excited about that!) at Lifetime on my own and with a masters group in the early AM. The only thing that sucks is that I have to wake up super early, I'm talking 4 a.m., in order to get my entire workout done before I start to bake in the sun. In reality, I'm always finishing my workouts baking, but in my mind all I think about are those horrible -20 degree temps of Chicago winters, and the hives I would get from running 10 minutes out there, and I fully embrace the desert heat and let myself cook. Last weekend I rode 72 miles around Ahwatukee and ran 40 minutes on Saturday, then ran 90 minutes on Sunday. Today I rode 77 miles with a group around South Mountain to San Juan trail and ran 40 minutes. Tomorrow I'm meeting a group at, you guessed it, 5 a.m. for a 100 minute run. My legs are feeling the increased training, but I LOVE IT.

As athletes we are always looking for the next new thing that will give us an edge, whether it is a new toy, like a new garmin or ipod, a new bike, race wheels, cycling or running shoes, it's always something. I think that mentality gets even worse when you have an injury. At least with me, I find myself willing to try anything and everything in order to keep myself healthy now and never have to deal with what I went though the first half of this year EVER AGAIN. So, I've been seeing more and more people with compression socks at races and on their blogs and I finally broke down and decided to give them a try. So Friday after work I stopped by Sole Sports in Chandler and picked up a pair of running 02 compression sportsocks. Now, I have no idea when or how long I am supposed to wear these things, I just have it in my head that these magic socks will help me stay healthy. So, basically I've been living in the things since I bought them, exept for when I work out because they would leave some nasty tan lines! The package did not come with any "instructions" as to when to wear them, so I will have to do more research on that. For now though, I will let the magic feed my mentality at least :)~

I started work at Fitness Factory Arizona in Gilbert on Thursday, and I see a lot of potential in what I can do there and offer them. I will write more about all this (exciting!!!) when I figure things out more, but everything is in the works and I am getting really excited about all the possibilities. I can say, though, that this facility is much better then I ever imagined! I mean, all the machines are brand spankin' new. The treadmills have ipod docs with mini screens so you can watch movies or videos or whatever's on your ipod while you work out. They also have usb ports where you can plug your usb drive in and the treadmill will put the info from your workout onto your usb drive and then you can update your workouts on your computer at home! Wow, talk about technology. I haven't seen treadmills like this before, but I am really excited about them even though I hardly ever run indoors. Anyway, I will be personal training and teaching group exercise classes like spinning and boot camp (and more) and I also plan on starting group runs, group rides and even possibly a triathlon training program for an upcoming Olympic or sprint distance race. The possibilities are endless, as are my ideas and motivation. Very, VERY excited!

Since I've been in AZ I've been embracing things about living here that I have missed sooooo dearly! Here are a few examples of my favorite things:

1) Whole Foods gives you free bags of ice to keep frozen products cold on your drive home. SWEEEEEEEET. By the way, Stonybrook Farm frozen yogurt, minty chocolate chip and cookies and cream... Awesome.

2)Qdoba is wonderful. Grilled veggie naked burrito with lots of guacamole. Heaven!

3) Jumping in the pool after a hot run is amazing.

4) Golden Spoon frozen yogurt, nothing beats that once a week.

5) Seeing everyone I know outside working out at 5 a.m. along with me... you just don't get that anywhere else. I swear I see pretty close to 30 people, if not more, that I know each morning out there enjoying the outdoors and embracing a healthy lifestyle.

6) No bugs. I dont have smashed bugs down my sports bra after I get home from biking. Nice!

7) Bikes shops on every corner, running and tri stores galore! In IL I had to drive 45 minutes to the closest tri shop, and I only found one in the whole Chicago area that was really any good.

8) NO POT HOLES!!!!!!

There's so much more, but honestly I have to get to bed so I can get up at 4 for my long run tomorrow. It sounds crazy, but I'd rather have a yummy dinner and be going to bed at 9 and getting up for a nice long run friends with then doing anything else in the world with my Saturday night.

Party on... well in my dreams!