Sunday, September 28, 2008

Osceola Duathlon

After my bad experience with the tri last month, I decided that I wanted to try a duathlon. We looked and this was the only one that fit my schedule, Matt decided to do it too. We stupidly went into this with little actual duathlon training, we can both run and bike, but have little experience at doing both back to back. The race was a 5K run/22 mile bike/1 mile run.

Another early morning as we got up to make the 1 hour drive to the race, the fog was terrible on the drive so it took a little extra time. We got our packets and chips and waited in line for the one working bathroom. Then quickly set up our transition area and headed to the start with about 10 minutes to spare. We were in Wave 4, the waves started every minute.

Matt and I just before the start of the first run.

It was our turn to start, so we headed to the start line and we were off. The run was a pretty flat course. I looked down at about the 1 mile mark and realized my watch hadn't started. I was trying to not go out too hard so I could still feel good on the bike, but was still feeling good seeing that I was passing people who had started in wave 2 & 3.

Early in the first run.

1st Run: 22:18 (7:12 pace) A 5K PR 10/82 Women
T1 1:33 67/82

Before the race started I was talking to this guy who was saying that the course was rolling hills. Looking at the elevation map, it had looked more then that, but maybe he knew better. The first stretch was along an open road and the wind was gusting, I was having a tough time staying in a straight line and felt a few times that I was going to get blown off my bike. Then came the first hill at mile 2, uh not rolling, but steep and long. Then the next big hill at mile 5, the entire course continued this way with steep hill after steep hill with only small downhills. The final big hill came at mile 15 and then it was what I would consider rolling hills. This was getting tiring, I realized I need to ride more big hills. Considering all this I still had a decent bike time and loved the huge downhills that finally came. Coming into transition was tough, it took me a minute after I stopped to actually get my leg lifted over the bike. There was no way I was going to fall right there.

Just out of transition, still having some issues with my shoe.

Bike: 1:21:07 (16.27 mph) 44/82
T2: 1:25 71/82

The final run was only 1 mile, jacket off, shoes changed and I was running. Yikes my legs were tired at this point. Once again a nice flat run. I could see 4 people in front of me as I was coming into the final turn, I made it my goal to pass them and I did.

Almost to the finish line, legs are feeling pretty good.

2nd Run: 7:13 4/82
Final time: 1:53:38 10/20AG 37/82 Women I was hoping for 1:45, but I can't complain after those hills. I was in the top half of the women. Matt finished about 3 minutes after me.

I waited and watched Matt finish and then we grabbed the post race food. OMG, they were serving pancakes hot off the griddle! I think this was the best race food I have ever had. We ate our pancakes, OJ and fresh fruit and headed home. We stopped for coffee at a little coffee house on the way home, which took about 30 minutes for them to make fresh coffee for Matt, tell me they were out of soy milk and try to exchange skim milk in its place and make my Bill's drink. I really enjoyed the duathlon and plan to work on the biking and transitions. I think I may stick to these for awhile as I mentally recover from the bad tri I had.

Matt and I after finishing and eating the great post race food.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Minneapolis Bike Tour

Okay so this is a little late, but things have been crazy. Last weekend started out with a long run for both Matt and I, 20 miles at the Bear Water Run for him and 23 miles with my team for me, so this will be more of a food report then anything else.

We decided it would be a fun thing to do since we have started biking more, the course was 37 (ended up being 38.5 miles). I guess it was the weekend of bonus miles. We did it as a family event, my parents rode the 14 mile route and Matt's dad rode the longer route. The weather was perfect, maybe even a little cold for me at the start, but quickly got nice.

We started a little around 7:45 with a lot of other people so had a difficult time getting any speed for the first few miles due to crowds and a big hill right away. Then the first stop came at about mile 6. Bruegger's Pumpkin bagels, yum. We ate and headed out past the lakes.

Now we come to stop 2 at Nokomis with granola bars, fruit, and potato chips, okay so not as good as the first, but there are still two more food stops. Now the ride takes up along the river and my least favorite part of TCM. We are now in downtown, but not before riding under the new 35W bridge, kind of strange, everyone slowed down. There was some rough terrain before crossing the stone arch bridge and a guy crashed right in front of me, luckily a medic happened to be there.

We now hit the 3rd stop and I have discovered a new favorite, premade graham cracker a peanut butter sandwhiches. I think they had animal crackers too. We now comae to a part of the course riding along the shoulder of a road with cars, so we once again lost speed. At about mile 30 we passed a cop who informed up there was beer at the next stop. A few miles later we hit the next stop only to find out there wasn't any beer, but there was Salted Nut Rolls and Oatmeal cookies.

A few miles to go and we reach the end just in time to finish before the rain hits. More food and coffee at the end, this time a comination of all the stops. I really never figured out why one person needed so much food for this distance of a ride, but the day after a long run, it was perfect.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Ready to Rock 10K

On Teusday I decided to sign up for a 10K that was this morning, I haven't raced much this summer, my team runs tomorrow and Matt is gone so why not. The 10K is run with a 20 mile race and about 3/4 of the people run the 20 miler. When I registered I looked at last year's results and saw that the 1st woman finished in 44:xx, so not really attracting the elites. In the back of my head I thought maybe I'd have a chance of placing. Last night as I was figruing out where the race started, I notice 2 different start times listed (8 and 8:30) I figured I better get there before 8 to be safe.

Got to the race area about 7:40, picked up my packet and oversized shirt, they didn't order enough smalls. I guess this is okay since they are kind of ugly anyways. The RD decided to start the race at 8:15 due to the time discrepencies. The race was iPod leagal, so last night I made a 10K playlist with all the songs that get me running faster. The weather was perfect, 50* with just a slight breeze an sunny.

I get to the start and the 10K lines up infront of the 20 miler, but I noticed something strange, no one wanted to be in front. I'm thinking there has to be some fast people. It wasn't chip timed, so why not I'll get in front. I ended up in front with another girl (ponytail girl) and a few guys. I looked around scoping out the other runners and realizing how many people were talking about this being their first 10K. We started and I ran with ponytail girl and the guys for a short time then she took off. About 1 mile in another woman caught me and passed. I just kept what felt like a good pace and concentrated on my running, trying really hard not to try to keep up with others. Soon the fast 20 milers caught up and I ran with a group of them for a while, but then split off to head to the finish. I was now running all by myself with no one to race towards. I then saw the last turn and pushed harder, then the finish line was in sight.
Mile 1: 6:59 (A little too fast)
Mile 2: 7:18
Mile 3: 7:39
Mile 4: 7:33
Mile 5: 7:38
Mile 6: 7:33
Mile 6.2: 0:45 (6:35 pace)
Final: 45:27 New PR by 2 min 30 sec. 7:20 pace
2nd place AG finish to ponytail girl who was 1st Woman in 39:xx, good thing I didn't try to keep up with her. 4th Woman and 13th OA.
I ended up getting a GC to a running store for AG place, this makes up for the crappy t-shirt. The ankle felt great the entire race. The race director was an old TNT coach, so when I went up for my award he made a plug for TNT.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Running in the rain

I love running in the rain, well at least on days like today when it is still warm and the rain just adds a cooling aspect to a run. This morning's run got a little interseting, it was sprinkling when I started running but within a few minutes it was pouring and the lightening started. I decided to head home and finsih my run on the treadmill. After 3 attempts to run on the treadmill resulting in 3 error messages and the belt stopping, I gave up figuring my run would be stopped at 1 mile.

15 minutes later the skies were clearing so I headed back out. It was still raining lightly, but I was still in my wet running clothes, so why not. I added on another 3.5 miles in the windy drizzle at a pretty good pace.
4.5 miles total in 35:10 7:49 average pace. I am finally startig to feel like I can get back to where I want to be with my running. I think that keeping my mileage low for almost 10 months now has really helped. I'm hoping to come back even stronger and faster then I was prior to my injury.