Friday, September 27, 2013

Random/ Funny Friday

So yeah I don't even want to discuss my weight this week. It's up. Let's just leave it at that and hope next week it's down.

I thought that this photo that Swim Bike Mom posted was a great way to tell the difference between a road bike and a triathlon bike. Really you can use either for triathlons, but triathlon bikes are more aero dynamic and built for speed. Road bikes are better when climbing hills.

Want to laugh? Check out some of these videos! They have all made me smile this week.


And Non Triathlete Related:

 Pretty much love Jimmy Fallon. 

I plan on doing a bike ride tomorrow and I was hoping to try these out...
Look Keo Easy Clipless Pedals!

Sidi T1 Clipless Bike Shoes
But unfortunately I can't get my old pedals off to put the new ones on! They are being stubborn! I'll have to wait until my boyfriend can do it, or just con someone at work to do it for me tomorrow!

Hopefully I won't fall when I do get them on though!

I'll have to do something this weekend after work to enjoy this beautiful weather we've been having!!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Mountaineer Duathlon

Completed my first duathlon! The Mountaineer Triathlon/Duathlon had three distances, Mini, Olympic and the one I did, the Sprint. The Sprint Duathlon is a 5K (3.1 miles), 20K Bike Ride (12.4 miles), and another 5K.  I'm so so glad I didn't do the swim! The week before the race it rained everyday and the day before the race looked like this:

And this is packet pickup by the way. There was no one there! Granted I went late in the day, but I guess this was a sign that this isn't exactly a huge race. I did some pre-race prep the day before. On my way back home it poured rain on my bike, so I dried it off as soon as I could. I tried to dry off the brakes, derailleur, and chain as best I could. Then I took some lube to it and hoped for the best. Then I laid everything out that I would wear, including a change of clothes just in case. I packed my bag with my bike glasses, a towel (in case it rained again), and some Gatorade gel. 

Anyway, on Sunday I woke up at 5:15 5:40am. I had most of everything laid out already, so I had some breakfast of english muffin, egg, and canadian bacon with some water and a bit of tea. My stomach had been out of sorts lately (hmm, perhaps from my horrid food choices?? naaaah), so I was a little wary of how my stomach was going to do! But I went on and pumped up my bike tires. Got everything in my car and made it up to the race without any snags a little after 7am. Even got some free parking, score!

First thing I saw when I walked my bike to the transition area were two expert looking racers with lots of Ironman gear. All I could think was queue the insecurities! Here I am with my hybrid bike, without clipless pedals and just my old race shirt instead of official looking jerseys! But as always, I kept on going, and just concentrated on my race. It's all you can do! So I set my stuff down with my bike at a ground level rack and went to get my numbers marked on my arm and leg and get my timer band that goes around your ankle.

As I was walking back to my bike I recognized a girl from the Transition Workshop. It was her first triathlon and we of course talked about how nervous we were. Unfortunately, she ended up forgetting her running shoes and her helmet!! But luckily her boyfriend was nice enough to go get them for her (twice, when she realized she had forgotten her helmet!) and got there in plenty of time. I admire how calm about it she was. I would have been Freaking out! This is about the time I realized I had put my bike the wrong direction, haha. But I just acted like I didn't have everything ready yet and turned it around and set my water and gel out.

All the duathletes were supposed to start at 8:15 after the mini distance triathletes went. There was a mishap though with the safety boat not being there yet, so the duathletes went first. There weren't very many of us. To start out, we had to go up a ramp and a hill. This was tough! I hate starting out going up steep because the rest of the time I feel like I'm just trying to catch my breath. I felt like it took a while for my legs to get relaxed. I thought the run felt like it was taking forever and all I could think about was that I had to do it all over again after the bike. Ugh! I finally started picking the pace up and the second half felt much better than the first.

One nice note though is that a woman names Suzanne quickly chatted with me while we were waiting for the start. She asked my name and said she would cheer for me. I thought that was nice of her, but kind of forgot about it once we started running. Well when I was kind of close to the 1.5 mile turn around she went by me and yelled out my name and told me to keep up the good work! It was really fun to hear my name and get that encouragement. And from a stranger! She ended up doing this the whole race and I wish she knew how much it really helped me. I tried to find her to say thank you, but didn't see her afterwards.

5K Time: 30.08
Transition 1: 1.09

This is my second fastest 5K time, can't complain about that! Only reason it took a little while in the transition is that I took the time to down my Gatorade gel. I'm not that concerned about time that I feel the need to try to down it while I'm on the bike.

Mounted my bike without falling, yay! 

After I got into the groove in the bike I was feeling pretty good. One girl passed me (she had clipless shoes though!), but then I passed a girl, so I didn't feel so bad! Haha. After a couple of miles of going on the very flat paved trail I knew we had to head to the main street. What I didn't know was that to do that we had to head up a short but slightly steep hill. It was around a corner, so I wasn't in the right gear to go up it. I had to push harder than I normally would have and even told a spectator he might have to push me in a minute, but I made it up without incident! Then it was on to the road. For the main road and bridge, they had the lane blocked off for us. Then we went onto a different road where the lane wasn't blocked off. This was my first experience cycling with cars whizzing by me! Okay most of them slowed down, but some went pretty darn fast. The road was a little bumpy too, I didn't feel it much, but my bike kept rattling. After the race, I realized it was my water bottle holder. (It is now securely screwed in). The whole ride all I could think about were the hills that I was currently going down, I would have to come back up and I was afraid that I wouldn't make it. Worst fear: having to walk my bike during a race! But it actually wasn't that bad. It was a lot less steep than it seemed on the way down. I felt like I did the road portion pretty well, but I may have slowed down some on the returning trail part.

Funny enough, the whole time on the trail, I kept thinking how weird it was that I wasn't seeing any of the triathletes heading towards me on the bike. Turns out that during the first wave for the mini distance, several people had to be pulled out of the river and all of them struggled due to the current. So for the rest of the racers, they changed the course to make it a point to point course (instead of a big square type of course) so that they just had to head downriver and not against the current.

Overall though I felt strong and I know I will have a faster time once I get clipless pedals so that half of my effort isn't a waste.

Bike Time: 47.28
Transition 2: .37

And I could feel that bike ride on the run! It definitely took at least a half mile before my legs felt loose again. But I kept on going. The other participants can make or break a race, seriously. People that encourage you as they pass you or you pass them is so uplifting. I don't know how many times I repeated "just keep moving" because a guy said that as we crossed paths. And someone who smiles at you, automatically makes me smile. Another guy, I saw him in all three legs, had a big smile on his face each time. Loved it!

Run Time: 31.07

Total Time: 1:50.31

 At the race, they posted your overall time. Which, by the way, I could have sworn said 1:40 which made me extra excited, oh well though. But I got a surprise when I saw that I was the first in my age group for females! Woot! And I received this: 
My first plaque for a win!!!

 I may have found out later that I was the only one in my category, but don't tell anyone that. It makes it much less fun!

We were also supposed to get medals, but due to the flooding in Colorado, they were late getting here. So they have to mail them to everyone. No biggie.

Hopefully this race will happen again next year. I heard that Wells Fargo is pulling out as the host/main sponsor. Someone should pick it up, it was a lot of fun!

Unfortunately I went to the race by myself, so I don't have any photos. The race is supposed to have some I think, so I'll try to post them if they did take some.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

My Week of "Vacation"

I had to take my vacation for work before a certain time, so I chose this week at random to take it. With absolutely no plans, I decided to head to my hometown for the week.

Due to me being here and my mother not owning a scale, there probably won't be a weigh in this week or I'll try to post something on Saturday. But here is my week in a nutshell. Note, it does not involve much exercise! :s Also combining my boyfriend's birthday this week, does not add up to excellent eating either. Just what I need the week leading to a race! Uuugh, haha.

Not the actual cupcakes I got my boyfriend, he got a variety. Still haven't had one of these though! Instant Karma Cupcakes.   

A bad day equals a venti chai latte at Starbucks

'Vacation' also includes a meeting for work. Yay taxes! haha

Good thing about my week: lots of family time! Painting pumpkins! At The Pottery Place

Photo session as my mom figures out the camera on my phone. Oh goodness!
 It's been very rainy here, which has putting a bit of a damper on my week and my mood. I haven't even felt like running or biking! And needless to say that my stomach has been upset by the different foods, tmi? haha.

But family and friend time is awesome and it's been nice just to sit back and relax. My ankle is also liking the rest, so perhaps on my race on Sunday I won't have any stiffness or pain! That would be great!

Friday, September 13, 2013

WI #9 and Looking Forward

Another Friday is here! It would be exciting if I didn't have to work tomorrow! As you can see my weight is down to 160. So close to the 150's! So I am down .6 from last week. I'll take anything that is in the downward direction.

I have done more strength training this week than....ever, probably. It's been a little bit of crazy week, so I've done some quick home workouts with strength training. My week looked like this:

Sunday: 6 miles
Monday: Swim 2 feet a little in the river, plus the running around for the transition workshop. Then some arm strength training with light weights and some plank work.
Tuesday: 15 mile bike ride.
Wednesday: Strength training at home which consisted of squats, planks, lunges, and weights for the arms.
Thursday: Strength training at home again sit ups, push ups, squats, and more weights for arm work.
Friday: 1 mile run, 12 miles on the stationary bike, 1.10 mile run. (Small brick workout practicing for next weekend)
Saturday: Some sort of run.

Another point for myself eating wise this week! Skipped out on dessert at a dinner we had at work on Wednesday and just had the fruit I brought to substitute.
 Then tonight I soooo wanted to just pick something up for dinner. But, but, I didn't! I was a good girl and came home to cook an omelet with turkey bacon (my latest kick).

I'm a little tired today. I couldn't sleep last night. So I played on Instagram. Isn't that what you're supposed to do when you can't sleep? No?
Anyway this picture got me thinking...
This is the place of my duathlon next weekend. I sooo want to work towards bigger races, but my swimming really holds me back. So I'm going to get stronger and force myself to practice more. I'm already not looking forward to that part, but I'll have to get through it if I ever want to enter races such as the Savage Man in the far future. This race is very close to where I live and one of the hardest triathlons in the world.
The Infamous Westernport Wall
If you have big desires, you have to put the work in, right? But, I'm still so new to the world of running, triathlons, duathlons, I want to start small and make sure I keep having things to look forward to. Having goals such as races is one of the reasons I'm still keeping on track with my weight loss and I can't let it get boring!

Well that's all I have for this week. I start vacation after Sunday, wish me luck that I don't eat everything in sight at my parents house! Yes, very exciting vacation I know...

Monday, September 9, 2013

Triathlon Transition Workshop

I've been feeling anxious all day. I decided when I got up this morning that I would go to the Morgantown Multisport Transition Workshop they were holding tonight at 6pm. With all things new I, of course, was intimidated. Intimidated by the faster, fitter people. The experienced versus 'the newbie'. And then there was going to be a pre-workshop swim. Dear Lord help me now.

I am not good at swimming. No, I'm not being modest. I have no technique. I get winded quickly and after a certain point in open water I feel like I'm going to drown. If I decide that I really want to continue doing triathlons, then I'll get a wetsuit so that I'll be more buoyant. For now though, I'm just doing a duathlon (run, swim, run).

Anyway, thanks to this little blog and the thought that I should really overcome my doubts, I went. And it was great! Everyone was really nice and I met a couple of people that were completely new to the sport like me!

Transitions, by the way, refer to the time that it takes one to transfer from one event to the next in a triathlon (swim, bike, run). So a first transition (T1) is when you come out of the water cross a mat that records your time, change into your biking gear and then cross another mat with you and your bike. The second transition (T2) is when you come back over that timing mat, get your bike back on the rack, get all of your running stuff on (like changing shoes), then head out back of the transition area (yes, crossing another timing mat) to the run portion of the race. Hope that makes sense.

Even though I'm not doing the swim for the upcoming race that this was kind of a practice for, I decided to get in the water just to get the full experience from the workshop. I didn't go as far as everyone else, it would have taken me way too long.
Thanks to Morgantown Multisport for taking a few pictures!

I'm the one with the green swim cap walking to the water. I just swam a little past that bridge column and back. The rest of the group went to a buoy that was well beyond that column then cut back to one that is straight out from this platform, then back to the shore. Triangle shape, if you will. Most of them were done by the time I got back! haha Oh well, I don't mind. I know my weaknesses and when it comes to this sport, swimming is by far my worst!

After the swim, we walked ran to the transition area that they had set up. Sandy, the leader, explained about various equipment, food, and accessories that we might want on race, depending on what distance we were going. (Mini, Sprint - which I'm doing, or Olympic).

Yup that's me, in all of my white glory with the blue tank top on, on the left.
 I wore a blue tank top that is made out of a quick dry material, that I think I got at Target or somewhere. With a sports bra underneath it and swimsuit bottoms that have gotten way too big! I was afraid they would fall off during the swim, but thankfully they didn't!

Some tips were:

-Start taking your wetsuit off as soon as you get out of the water. Wetsuits are easier to get off while they still have a lot of water on them. Even if you just take them half off while you are running up to the transition area, this will be a lot easier then if you wait until you are at your bike to start taking it off. It'll be 100 times harder because it will stick to you!

-The easiest outfit to wear is a tri suit. That way you don't have to change clothes, you can even swim in them. They include a chamois that is not as thick as actual biking shorts that way it is still comfortable to run in, but thick enough to protect you while you're riding.

-Bring lube, Body Glide or Chamois Butt'r Cream for long distance races so that none of your body parts starting hurting (and yes I mean EVERY part of you!).

-Get a CO cartridge instead of a pump, it isn't as heavy.

-Use shoe laces that you don't have to tie. Like these.
 -Make sure to have your race fuel ready to eat on the bike where it's going to be the easiest to eat. Either get a bag that fits on the front bar of your bike
Kind of like this one.
  Or just duct tape your gels on at the top where you can rip them off to where the top of the gel stays on the bike and it's easy to access. Thought this was a fun idea!
-Make sure all of your equipment is easily accessible and don't get in your neighbor's area. Put your helmet with your sunglasses in it on your handlebars, for example.

-Have your socks rolled down so that it's easier to put them on. Especially when you have wet feet!

-Rack your bike opposite the person's next to you.
      Definitely did not know that one! You should also put your stuff under the rear tire of your neighbor.

-Bring two towels, one to wipe dirt or sand off your feet. Lay it right on the ground to easily step on.

-A bag to put all of your crap equipment is helpful.
Your helmet can go into the mesh part of it. Nifty.
 -Bring a plastic bag of some sort for all of your smelly clothes afterward and bring a change of clothes.

 I'm sure there are a ton more, but those are the main ones that I paid attention to!

So after Sandy went through all the tidbits. We practiced putting our clothes on, any shorts, shirts, socks, shoes with our helmets and anything else we needed, running with the bike to the "mount" start and then getting on the bike. This is usually the way that it is done in a triathlon. You aren't allowed to just hop on your bike. You have to take it to a safe zone where you can mount it and then start your ride. I definitely needed those no tie shoe laces!

Can you see me way in the back with the blue shirt on?

Then we would dismount from the bike, she would start the clock back up and we would run back to the transition area, rack our bikes, get our helmets off, some people would change shoes if they were wearing cycling shoes, and then we would run up a ramp like we were heading for the run portion of the race.

Sadly I was still slower than some, even though I didn't have to change shoes, but I got a little better. We did it three times. The second time we did it, I accidentally hit the bike next to mine when I was putting it on the rack. Oops! It didn't fall off though, haha.

Shew, I still have so much to learn!! Thankfully, I'm starting this process at a relatively young age, so I have plenty of time to develop and to buy all of the fun gadgets!. I'm starting to realize that I don't have to have everything right now, this second. That, hopefully, I still have time to work up to greater distances, to try out new gear, and to spend the crazy amount of money it takes to get set up for triathlons. (Thank you EBay and Amazon, haha).

Afterwards, Sandy the leader of it all, talked a little more to us new girls and gave us some more tips. I learned that it is not my bike that has been acting funny, it's the fact that I've been trying to change gears while going up hills. This apparently is very bad for your bike and could really mess up your gears! Woops! See, still so much to learn!

This made me really excited about the race that's on the 22nd. Honestly I haven't been giving it very much thought, but not I'm pumped and ready for my first duathlon! I won't even really have a transition since I don't change shoes to bike in! (But that might be changing soon, not for this race, but soon).

See you never know what will happen when you try new things and get out of your comfort zone!

P.S. The Monongahela River does not smell too pretty once you're out of it. Yuck.

Friday, September 6, 2013

WI #8, The Scale, And Holding Back

 This shows that I'm up .2 pounds from last week at 160.6. What you don't see is that the first time I got on it showed 161. Then after I got my phone to take a picture and got back on, it showed 161.4. I got back on without my phone...161.4. I was getting mad. So I moved the scale to a different spot. 160.6. By then I realized that maybe my scale is a little messed up. I took the picture after I moved the scale several times and just got over it.

I'm not sure why my weight is up any amount. It might be the after affect of my long bike ride yesterday (2 hours) or a kind of salty snack of peanuts that I had kind of late yesterday evening. I'm not sweating it. My weight has been up and down all week. I have a feeling that tomorrow it will be back down. I was tempted to wait until tomorrow to post to see what the scale said, but I knew I had to stay true to myself and show what was going on. I may try to see if my scale needs re-calibrated or something, I don't know.

Anyway a few weeks ago I was watching an episode of Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition and there was a participant named Cassandra who had a fear of going white water rafting due to the fact that if she fell out, they may not be able to pull her back into the raft due to her weight. Cassandra got passed her fear and did it! But I know exactly what she meant! In fact, it happened to me! One summer I went rafting, except I was in my own inflatable canoe type of raft.

Kind of like this one, except for one person. Anyway, we were going down the New River and I fell out going down some rapids. No biggie, I've done it before, but then I had to get back in my kayak/canoe by myself. There was no way that was happening! So one of the guides came over to help. Well he couldn't lift me up either. So TWO guys had to lift me up and help me scramble on it. I was mortified that I weighed so much and didn't have the strength to do lift myself up. Just another fat girl story! haha

Despite stories like the white water incident, I tried to never let my weight hold me back.

I traveled:
2007 Serbia

2010 Wales  
Met New Friends, England

 Done silly things:
This may or may not be at a Renaissance Fair...
And Fallen in Love, among other things!

But there are some things that I don't/haven't done. Like being too afraid to sleep in the top bunk because I'm afraid I would crush the bottom person! To take a dance class, really regret that. Afraid I wasn't strong enough to go rock climbing. Embarrassed that I'm not fast enough to join in the biking group or swimming group, even now!

How silly it all seems though! No person should be restricted by their fears, no matter what they are! I was afraid to have people see me run, but I did it anyway to get to my goal of running in a race. I've overcome other fears too, such as wearing a dress, fear of major chub rub! And starting this blog sharing my weight, embarrassing stories and secrets!

No matter what size you are, a life lived in fear is no life at all! So try to break through some fear every once in a while. Your life will be fuller for it!

Alright gotta go. Hope everyone experiences something adventurous this weekend! :)

Monday, September 2, 2013

I Resisted

Holy Moly Batman! I actually kept with my plan this weekend!

I didn't indulge in this:


I didn't eat this:
Or this:

And these:

I even lost weight this weekend! (Okay only .2 pounds, but it's still a loss!!!) I did drink my weight in sweet tea this weekend, but what can I say? I can't give up my sweet tea just yet.

No my family and friends aren't sugar addicts. The reason for all the treats were due to a couple of birthdays. Two friends of mine have birthdays this week and my mom's birthday is Wednesday.

I think writing out my goal to show willpower and making small choices that lead to better things really paid off. I kept reminding myself of it all weekend.

The interesting thing is that I realized it's not ALL of my fault that when I go home I overeat. Not only are there temptations just laying around in plain view and for easy grabbing at my parent's home, but people can be pushy when it comes to food! My friends and family kept trying me to eat these desserts, but I remained firm. I stated that I wanted to lose more weight and to do that I couldn't gain five pounds every time I return home. I also planned like I said I would. I took water and either a granola bar or some 'trail mix' that I put together. I put trail mix in quotes since it was really just peanuts and dried cranberries and some raisins. But that mix of salty and sweet absolutely did the trick. I went to three movies this weekend and didn't get popcorn, even though I really really wanted it!! I saw The Big Lebowski at a new movie theater/playhouse that has an old feel, Planes at a Drive-In movie theater, and The World's End. all were great! haha.

I managed to get in one run on Saturday. I met a friend and we did five miles in 58 minutes together. It was so nice to have someone to keep me company and to talk to during the run. It made it go by much faster! I didn't run yesterday though. It was rainy and honestly I was really tired. So I'll either run or bike ride today after work. Yes I have to work on Labor Day!