Sunday, June 24, 2012

This Week - Finding my Current Pace

Week 2 into the training zone and ensure I'm getting a good mix of exercise with yoga, swimming, biking, running, and weights for strength training.

Needed to determine what my baseline measurements were to track and see improvements towards goals.


Conducted a couple of workouts at home - based on power threshold and technique. Then repeated a prior workout in Napa - Silverado Trail. Great place to do a time trial as its non-stop road.

Was impressed at the improvements. And eager to improve!

Comparing the workouts
  • Pace is faster at 17.2 mph vs 17.0 mph (need to now see how much I can click this up in 8 weeks)
  • Heart rate is MUCH lower at 160 bpm vs 171 - meaning I am much more efficient in my production and use of energy. (still have 10 lbs weight to lose to help here....but greats start!)
  • Bike cadence now added to my garmin - and the average of 89 cadence is right on target with my 90 goal.
  • Average Power was 137 watts - first time trying to use this and determine how I stand here. My distribution shows I was using the right zones for the time trial but will need to lower for endurance training rides.


Running is not my favorite thing - mainly because I'm nervous about getting injured here and not being able to compete. I spent a few months last year with little running and focused on biking.

I've done a couple of t-runs from the bike rides of 1-3 miles and pace was decent. But needed to see how the pace would hold up on a longer run.

Golden Gate Park with some friends on a lovely sunny day - nice!

Baseline data was good - average pace at 9:33 min/miles - and avg Heart rate at 162 bpm.

This is definitely promising for me to get to a 9:30 pace for a marathon - with smart training and good nutrition (another area to get going on)

feeling good after this data! 8 more weeks!

IronMan I come!

OMG It's hit me that I have to do another IronMan this year....and it requires training.

I have somehow convinced myself that because I've already done one, that I will just be able to get on a bike and cycle for 112 miles. Or that after cycling 500 miles on the ALC ride, that I can now go at a 17 mph average pace on a long ride.

hmm...yes...I know....but it's now hit me...and the training plan has been created...with goals...charts....and the excitement (and nervousness)

Swim - Bike - Run = IronMan!

So how does IronMan Canada terrain look like?

The swim is in a lake - which is much preferred to the ocean - and many state the "perfect temperature" as in August you've built up some warmth but still tolerable in a wetsuit. Wide beach to spread the swim start out - less washing machine battering each other. And the course is a 1 loop aspect, so no overtaking from the elites.

The bike is NOT easy. That's what I've heard and started to read about. It's a 1 loop course of 112 miles - so no seeing fellow riders. The bike elevation is 5,500 for the ride. Ouch! I can do that, but in a race format to push for speed...and then doing a marathon afterwards. hmmm....not sure on this one

Looking at the above elevation chart identifies a couple of items for my training:
  • Hill training MUST be included (not always my fave)
  • Practice a big hill at the 80% point of the ride to simulate the mile 80 pass
  • Build my power wattage up to be able to gain speed and maximize the use of my legs, ensuring I have enough left for the run
  • **HEAT** training needed as well as the temperature gets to the 90's so being able to get electrolytes and hydrate in is key
I just found out that this is not an easy run. I thought, it must be flat as it runs close to the lake. But alas, the elevation gain is 600 feet. That is easy on a bike, but on a run....after a packed day....hmmm.

The run is an out-n-back - so you can see the mirror elevation in the elevation chart above.
Going to have to practice putting in a hill at the end of a long run of 10 miles for this one. Ouch!
And of course in heat (the summer means more light, but I'll only be getting the last hours, so perhaps cool weather will have settled in)

So that's it - the course!

My Goals for the IronMan

 It is my 2nd IronMan, so I have a sense of the emotional and physical turmoil...and can try and put in a couple of goals for pace and time. Of course, finishing healthy and strong is the main goal. The rest is a bonus.

Staying steady to my prior IronMan pace
Total 14:00 =  Swim 1:45, Bike 7:00, Run 5:00, Transitions 0:15
(this was a flat course, so doing this on a hillacious course and in super heat will be wonderful)

The best I could do (or at least can dream for!)
Total 12:00 = Swim = 1:30, Bike 6:00, Run 4:15, Transitions 0:15
(yes this is crazy, so more of the best ultimate stretch goal)

Paces needed for stretch goals - Bike at 19 mph, Run at 9:30 min/miles - yes a stretch indeed!

ALC Ride Summary

The ALC Ride is complete - I've been back at work now for over a week - and life is settling into the "new normal". Sigh

I'm now in the full training mode after 1 week recovery for IronMan Canada on August 25th. Yep, doing another one. And the ALC ride finally kicked me into training gear.

I do enjoy looking at data and analyzing how it is changing over time (hopefully getting better, but not guaranteed!)

Here is the summary from the ALC rides over 7 days. No Heart rate Monitor used - so just the top-line summary. I will also caveat that there was NOT any satellite available in a few areas - so the data below is under-estimated (e.g. I have 500 miles from my bike monitor total vs the 466 miles here)

My thoughts

I didn't have any time or pace goals for this other than to ride the whole thing. In seeing this data I am in awe of the total elevation gain - I do remember there being hills every day, so glad to see it verified. Speed is not the IronMan pace I'm going for - but something to use as a base in training. And the cadence is also decent - I'll be bringing this up in the training, but again good base.

Well off to start the IronMan Canada Training!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

ALC Day 7: Final ride to LA

The final day of the ALC Ride.

Waking up on the beach was lovely but sad - all the new friends we've made - will soon be over.

Photos galore of the our "tent home" for the week and some of the friends we made.

Nice mellow ride today - dolphin sightings - famous houses at Malibu (FYI Leo DiCaprio is renting his place for $75k per month) - and the LA people running at the beach.

And of course crossing the final few miles were moments to cherish - and smile with the person next to you as you crossed the line.

Thank you everyone for your donation - $12.6M was raised by the riders in total - all the Daddy Browns give you hugs and Scoobie Doo's :)

Friday, June 8, 2012

ALC Ride Day 6: gorgeous love bubble

The last full day of riding - 87 miles - and what a gorgeous day it was!!

Sunny all day and ocean views...saw a pod of dolphins and the joy it brings for the opportunity to Be here in nature.

Now Day 6 means that there are lots of aches and pains...lots of Benjay applied with gloves (pic) and it became normal today to hear shouts of "butt butter here!!"

Took some photos of the bike stops where you see it is easy to lose your bike - but I got a fancy flag to honor Daddy Brown - and life was easier!

And what would an ALC day be without some costumes!! Lucy loved the pink squirrels and Nigel preferred the Mad Max men (hmmm men in leather chaps??)

Happiest moment today eating ice cream in Santa Barbara surrounded by 2000 other riders in our "love bubble"
A moment of community that you don't see in the "real world"

Off for the final night - a candlelight vigil on the beach where we remember our loved ones no longer with us from AIDS...I'll be thinking of Daddy Brown with his crazy spirit and kooky hair.
Love you Daddy Brown.

ALC Ride Day 5: Red Dress Fest

Hooray Day 5 has arrived...lots of people said this is the best day as we all wear a red dress and bike...the streams of red and the switchbacks we do make it look like the AIDS red ribbon.
It's also only 43 miles which is much needed rest on the legs...

So attaching some photos of the lines and sea of red as well as the both of us in our red dress. We were tame compared to many - faves include the Budweiser ladies (pic), and the Baywatch crew. Riding in your swimsuit? Crazy!!!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

ALC Ride Day 4: Hills, Chickens, and 97 miles

Long day on #4. Get to the bikes and a ride sheet (pic) that just makes you weep. Thought Day 3 was the last of the big hills??

So what better outfit than the Ironman Arizona jersey...all those comments from folks saying "this must be easy" making you wince!! LOL
Never ending hills....(pic)

So ate many of THE best food on the trip - the PB&J graham crackers (pic). These things are like crack!

A long day with lots of wind - 15 mph with 25 mph gusts. And when you are leaning sideways to stay up straight and have trailers go past's a white knuckle ride!

But the people here keep this amazing. Chicken outfits that are amazing (pic) - imagine passerbys face on that! Long lines to cross a road (pic) creates instant conversation points.

And the big highlight is HALFWAY TO LA!!!!!! Awesome!!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

ALC Ride Day 3: Birthday Sunshine

It's my birthday on Day 3 and the sunshine came out! A lower mileage day at 66 miles, but includes the legendary "quad buster" hill - 1500 feet incline over 1.5 miles.
On a normal day - fine - but on the 3rd day of cycling and camping - a tough challenge.
Made it!!! And enjoyed the downhill. :)

Ok what else? Sausage at 9am - gorgeous. BBQ cooked by local town. Biking part of the Wildflower course. And stopping at Mission San Miguel for the "best 4 house" (aka rest stop 4)

Photos below of the fun and beauty of the day.

Ended up at Paso Robles - with a luxury hotel stay. Mmmm

And heard so many stories of hope, courage, and victories through HIV. My fave was Louis, a 60 year old female diagnosed 20 years ago.
She's done the ALC ride for 17 years, and has always ridden - even when throwing up on the side of the road from new medications.
On top of that she is also the only female woman to have completed the 700 mile Paris-Brest-Paris ride, a non-stop ride for 90 hours. Not 1x but 5x in her life.
Now that puts life and courage into perspective.

Monday, June 4, 2012

ALC Ride Day 2 - Carnage!!

Oh man...never believe someone when they say 30% chance if rain and light winds.
It means a Cat 4 storm, wind at 20 mph, and 1400 riders trapped at aid stations.

It started with a standard morning (see picture) but rain came in at mile 17 and just got stronger. There was hail further up, thankfully didn't catch that. Route cancelled for most riders.

Did see riders crash on uphills (don't stand up on a wet hill) and skid out on turns, and hundreds of hypothermia cases (see photo 2)

Staff did a great job dealing with us all - and community spirit was a joy to see - everyone helping each other. We sheltered inside of trucks, churches, and schools. Got fed and watered. And got bused 60 miles to camp. (so only 40 miles ridden)

We had 3 hours in the rain, riding and standing, took its toll on us. Not quite hypothermia but chilled to the bone

Looking forward to a new day - especially as my birthday - and warm sunshine :)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

ALC: Day 1 Highlights

Falling asleep right now after 85 are some highlights on Day 1

Lack of caffeine provided on the ride - no soda or coffee and by 10am this is what happened to Lucy...

Nigel in the meantime entertained himself with a new friend...

We did enjoy some sights together...gorgeous ocean for most of the day. Stopped a lot just to admire the views

Arrived at camp, got the tent, got lost in tent city, then put it up, showered in a mobile shower (more another day on that one)

And ate food!!! Lots of it (see it)

Finishing the evening with a full moon at tent city...

Good night! Tomorrow is 109 miles

ALC Ride - it's 5am!!!

OMG it's waaaay too early to be up, and we have to cycle 82 miles today.

The suitcases had to be re-worked a couple of times ...check out a selection of the daily hydration and energy food items.

They say that you burn 3,500 calories a day ...good as I've had a cinnamon bun, ensure, red bull, and banana and it's not even 6am yet!!

Photo this morning of us...we look bad...but likely the best we'll look. Lol!

Okey dokey - saying my prayers this morning for the Daddy Browns of the world. May we find a cure for AIDs.

Ride on!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

ALC Ride: the final prep

Hello everyone - going to be blogging along the way on the ALC ride.
All based on quality of cell coverage - aiming for 1x per day

Day 0
At Cow Palace today going through the various stops...register here, safety video here, drop off bike....

Cow Palace is a historic venue with JFK speaking here to Red Hot Chili though it's just 3,000 bikers and roadies.

I think I should be nervous for the ride (Nigel certainly is, but he does have quite a hangover to get over), but I find I am actually more nervous about the packing...can I get it all in 1 bag?
I'm not really known to be a light packer...

Photos attached of the safety video and the packing....

Going now to eat, pack, eat....sleep!!

Test from phone

Testing app to blog from phone