Surviving my first Triathlon

Lets start from the beginning, shall we? I have this friend, sometimes we are more like twins, and she is also my training partner. She convinces me to do these crazy things – like sign up for Triathlons. Well, now I can’t thank her enough. If it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t have made it through training. But when I start something, I finish it. When the buzzer went off and I pushed off the wall to start my 500 yard swim, the same thing went through my mind during lap 2 – when I panicked.

Yes, my worst nightmare (next to drowning, of course) happened. The adrenaline of race day, the swishing of all of the people in the water (mind you this swim took place in a pool), and the fact that there were 4 people to a lane circle swimming hit me all at once. I can’t even tell you what exactly happened, but I no longer was able to breathe under water as I took each stroke. I tried and tried, even stopped 3 times during the swim, but once the anxiety hit me, that seemed to be it. I talked myself down, I tried to calm my breathing, but nothing worked. SO, I tried my backup – the breast-stroke. I still couldn’t get my breathing rhythm under control. So I just swam with the crawl stroke – without my face in the water, and it was exhausting. But I finished my laps, ran to my bike, and shook it off.

I cut 20+ minutes off my bike time from training and ran hard to SOMEHOW crush my goal time of 2:00 hours. I finished my first Sprint TRI in 1:56:42. I conquered those killer hills, had my transitions set up great for successful and smooth transition times and ran to the finish line to find my huge support system cheering me on and as tired as I was, I couldn’t help but sprint it to the finish. It was amazing and despite the swim, I am hooked on Triathlons. I know with different training, I’ll rid myself of that swim anxiety on race day and go on to set and crush more goals.

So, if you’ve ever thought about doing a TRI, DO IT. You can do it. I promise you. I trained hard for all parts of it and do you know what got me through that killer swim? My training and endurance. Surprisingly, my 8-week training (btw – I totally suggest Triathlons for Women by Sally Edwards) was a lot of fun. I didn’t have to find other things to do, because (duh) there is built-in cross-training! What’s better than that?

Set goal. Work hard. Crush goal. Repeat. #fearless2014  

 

Self-Care During Training

self-careI am less than 2 weeks from my first TRI and yesterday, I did my first swim/bike transition workout – finally I got my bike off the trainer and on the road! Today, I’ll be doing a dry run of my TRI and after yesterday’s workout I feel completely confident for the first time in my training that I CAN do this. Last week, I had hit a wall in my training. I wasn’t paying attention to how I was eating and I was overwhelmed with everything else going on. By the way, training gluten free is not an easy task to overcome, but you can do it! Life gets away from us. Don’t let it. I just spent an amazing weekend in the city (Anchorage) regrouping and regaining energy. Even though I was still training there, I was relaxed and taking time for myself. Shopping, eating out on my own and without the stress of someone else’s schedule and then I spent a couple days with a friend hiking in the mountains. Without a weekend away, I would still be hitting my head on the wall.

So to everyone out there (my readers and friends) that are in training, providing direct-services to clients/consumers, those traveling and always on the go, I am telling you to TAKE TIME TO TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.

Feeding my TRIathlon training

It’s hard to believe that I just finished week 3 of my Triathlon training, which means 5 weeks from tomorrow I’ll be competing in my first TRI. The encouragement of my good friend (great, actually) April is probably the whole reason I signed up. Swimming is not my strong point and I hear her yelling in my ear to just do, jump in, swim your laps and “I promise, it’ll be easier and you’ll feel more confident.” This week, I hit that point in my swimming. She also gave me this awesome book:

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Adding in training for the first time this year also means finding a balance in fitting everything in. Today, I sat debating on doing a 15k or so XC ski with some friends or using a rest day wisely so I could go on a leisurely ski tomorrow with my friend April. I have always been an advocate of rest days, but now, they are becoming much more restful and around the house. My body sure knows how to tell me how to spend my days. So I started off the day right with some oat pancakes (see recipe: https://akgirlruns.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/gluten-free-oat-waffles-one-awesome-accident/).

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Why not enjoy a homemade paleo latte?

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Paleo blender latte

2-3 cups organic coffee, brewed (I like dark roast)
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 tbsp coconut oil
dash of vanilla extract & cinnamon (optional)

Blend all ingredients in high speed blender for about 30 seconds. Pour in your favorite mug and add dash of cinnamon. Mmm! Coffee Tip: If you use a Keurig (like I do), I use a reusable filter and brew my own coffee as a small cup, and run it through twice (so, run two small cups). It makes the coffee stronger.