Sunday, April 27, 2008


It's been a week and a half since I last blogged... BAD KAREN!

In summary;

Had a great time in Atlanta.

Discovered the "Cheesecake Factory" whilst there. Couldn't decide what to eat (too much choice), so had a lovely slice of traditional cheesecake... then found out it was approx 600 calories and 59g of fat.. OH MY GOD... that's what like nearly an hours running or something?! Anyhow - I figured I did enough exercise whilst in Atlanta so enjoyed every mouthful of it :o) YUMMY!

Got back to the UK last Sunday to typical gray drizzle... YUK!

Went back to work, having had a lovely week off in Atlanta... enough said about that...

Had a good training week this week... Open water session has started so headed to the lake... 12degrees.... I MEAN 12 blinkin degrees.... it was BLOODY FREEZING! Still I had a wetsuit and some booties........ managed about 45mins before I decided my brain was freezing and became delirious... humm

Today was sportive day - thought it was 110k, but actually was 96k (with 1122m climbing).. .due to technical problems (ran out of inners and gas), cut it short and did something like 74k - a great day... was supposed to run for an hour after but the roast dinner was calling...

OK summary of the week over - sorry it's been a bit of a dull one. Monthly summary appearing somewhere near here soon!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Atlanta and Wes - part deux

Morning/ Evening/ Afternoon fellow bloggers

I've been here over 5 days and I'm still waking up at 5am then again at 6:30 - which has been get up time. Hummm..... Bet I get the right sleep pattern Friday night, would be about right given I'm flying home Saturday!!

Anyhow it's now Thursday afternoon so a couple more days of tri-training in Atlanta to catch up on.

Thanks to Wes I got a swim in these last couple of days at an "Aquatic Center" near Marietta. Wes has been a absolute star with suggestions of places to train, rental places etc. The Aquatic Center is a 10 lane 25yd/ 25m (depending on which way they switch the lanes) quite close to where I'm staying - and it only costs $3 to get in - bargain. A decent pool with a lane to yourself - excellent :o) Managed a swim both yesterday and today, hopefully will again tomorrow too.

Yesterday I headed back over to Silver Comet Trail, rented a bike again and headed out for a 1.5hour session to include 5*2'intervals (3' rest). Did these towards the end of the session (as prescribed) and actually found it quite hard. Think this was partly down to the lovely warm (ie nearly 70 degrees) weather which has now arrived - hurrah for that too! :o)

Today after the swim I headed back to the Chattahoochee River and parked up for a 80min slow easy (HR <148) run. Had outlined plans to meet Wes during the run as he was doing a brick today. I must confess I started both late, it was hot and I didn't feel light on my feet at all, all in all I started out feeling YUK. Think this was partly down to the heat but also down to the fact I was carrying a litre of water on my bum-bag plus trappings of a tourist in it!!! LOL..... Talk about paranoid with all that water - on reflection I should have headed out with my epipen and keys and left the rest behind as I could have had water in a couple of places and did loop back to the lot just after half way. Still I explored a little, up one of the bike trails - up being the operative word here.... phewy! So much for running in zone still I did get to run back down again which was great fun! Managed to get back to the parking lot of 12:30 and there came Wes cycling right by me - I hardly recognised him in his bike helmet!! LOL.... still there's only one Georgia smile like that I reckon. Given I started late I still had nearly 30mins to go - bless the Wesmyster as he accompanied me for the lot of it - I enjoyed the company :o) He was only supposed to be doing a 15min brick so that was really nice of him. We fell into a nice easy pace, then on the way back I'm sure we got faster and faster - will have to look at my Garmin.... I thought it was him speeding up and he thought it was me...LOL..... ! Still I finished feeling a heck of a lot better then I started. Oh and we did see some snakey criter thing in the pathway on the run... eugh! Wasn't very big but still - a SNAKE! Really..... was there any need? Oh and Lisa - we took a picture this time - will be coming on a blog near you sometime soon :o) Tomorrow is my final training day in Atlanta - a swim, 2hr bike and run off..... reckon I need to start as early as possible as it's heating up out here... LOVELY :o) Still hoping to meet the Wes Clan tonight!

Other non-tri-specific ramblings;
1. Incident of the day (other then the snake)... Do not put car keys in the same pocket in your bum back as a pouch of energy powder. This may seem a secure place to put the keys but they come out with a fine sweet dusting!
2. Why do people in Atlanta not indicate when the are driving?
3. Why is it if you're looking to come in a lane on the freeway, on indicating to do so the car (way) behind on the inside lane speeds up and closes the gap?!
4. Why do they have key activated front gates on this apartment building when you can just drive in to the residents car park through the back entrance at the rear of the property during the day (due to construction ongoing)
5. When is the cat going to get over his jetlag?
6. Why does Walmart have so much cereal to choose from but NO MUESLI!?
7. Note to self: Do not have anymore of those lovely fine onion shredded fried things from the Italian - they are delicious but do play havoc with your innerds!

OSN: 2k in 65mins (distance guess, lots of drills, main set 50,100,150,200,250, 300)
OBN: 33.80k in 1hr30mins
OSN: 1.8 in 65mins (distance a complete guess, more drills main 50,100,150,200)
ORN: 11k in 1hr20mins

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Atlanta and all....

So I just wanted to start my post my saying what a lovely guy Wes is! Very surreal meeting a fellow blogger, particularly one that lives such a distance away... and Mum I quite forgot to send on your best wishes to him so hopefully when I see him again later in the week I can do that!

OK so before I get on to Wes let me tell you about my trip thus far.....

Started off great - with a *free* upgrade to British Airways world traveller plus! We were going to buy the upgrade but I dropped the subtle about my Auntie being crew (thanks Auntie A!)... and low and behold when we boarded found we had been booted up a class! Fabulous start!

Having finally arrived at Atlanta airport then came the fun of meeting half dozen large bags, getting through customs only to leave the bags behind to get to the other luggage collection point as we passed through security again. I have to say I just don't get that logic! If only the bags would appear at the other end as swifty as they did first time round too.... humm... still a bit of a wait later we loaded the two trollies and headed for the Hertz bus, where a rather nice gentleman offered a hand loading them on the bus!!! Take what you can get after such a long flight is what I say! Next came the chevy Trailblazer - talk about BIG.... well it did feel big compared to Betty my A4 estate! Finally made it to W suites in one piece around 6:30pm (11:30pm UK time).... didn't bother to unpack other then the basics! Even managed to head out for some food a bit later on, although frankly nearly fell asleep in it!

The main excitement of the next day was me driving.... particularly when I got a little curious about all those buttons in the rear-view mirror...... note to self... do not press the one that looks like an emergency button.... yes it was an emergency button and yes the car did dial out!! OMG! Like a voice came over all the speakers asking me if there was an emergency in the vehicle!! LOL!!.... I just rather embarrassingly told the guy that I'd pressed the wrong button! Oh dear!!

Anyhow, Monday came and it was time to discover the silver comet trail that Wes mentions an awful lot in his posts... so headed down there just after the rush to discover the bike rental place wasn't open till 10am! Oh, there was me there just after 9.... humm... so having observed that most people were dressed up like it was mid-winter I thought I'd try and find a shop to get some extra gear.... Found a walmarts, managed to get a bum bag (v useful for couple of snacks as had forgotten my bento box), and a pair of fishing gloves - these were great actually as they were half rubberised and only cost something like $2..... bargain and they did the job in a cheap and efficient way on the bike.... did I mention is was less then 10degrees ??!!... Which was about 42 in US speak...... begs the question why did I only pack summer biking gear!? LOL! Anyhow, by the time I got back the rental place was open. Got a nice specialized bike and they kindly fitted my pedals, adjusted the seat and I was ready to go - well after buying some knee warmers that is. Set off with as many layers I could muster for a 2-3 hour ride!

Here's the trail map;I guess you can't make out much really... but there's plenty to see around and about, some of it residential, a golf course, a cement type works, some schools, and best of all - plenty of countryside and trees galore!

As for the ride -well I did just short of 60km in just over 2.5hours... and let's just say I cruised out, then it started to rain so I belted it back!!!.... I got cold and I got wet but it was GREAT! Also big shout out to the people at the bike rental place who were fab, extremely helpful, very kind and very welcoming. Going back again later in the week!

On to Tuesday...... So having made email contact with the Wes-man I even managed to text him - took a couple of goes as couldn't figure out what to put in front of the numbers to get it through! Anyhow, he offered to meet me at the Chattahoochee river near where he worked or suggested I could pick him up (VERY brave man!!!).... LOL.... so I opted for the second as it was good of him to be meeting me, having a run with me and showing me his training routes etc.... obviously I navigated with TomTom, although he didn't seem to quite be able to find the address....humm.. still I made it to the office and there was Wes in person! He hoped in the truck and gave me a great big Georgia bear hug (well what could be mustered across the seats!).... he then rapidly strapped himself in - obviously being a woman and driving on the wrong side of the road was a little worrying... well it was for me anyhow ;o) ...LOL!

We set off the half mile to the river - what a lovely place to run! Wes was supposed to be on quarter mile intervals and I was on a fartlek session... in the end I think we pretty much ran a tempo one.... not quite what either of us planned but it worked out that way which was great. I think we pretty much run at the same pace and we nattered, apart from "that" hill... along the way (note this was not an "easy run" and the natter did include the occasional huff and puff along the way!!)

This image is my Garmin sportstrack image;

It was really great meeting up with a fellow blogger! Bit of a surreal experience but a great one! A fabulous run to boot! Hopefully I'm going to be able to meet up with the legendary DeeDee and rest of the Wes-clan Thursday night!!

Now all I need is some of that Atlanta sunshine...

OBN 59.87km in 2hr 36mins (easy pace)
ORN 06.56km in 40mins (steady/ tempo)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Spot the Difference....

Picture the scene...

It's Tuesday morning

It's -2 (YES MINUS 2) outside (WTF!...) and I need to do a 70min hill run (... effort up the hill recovery on flat/ down hills... 2nd WTF of the day...)

What way but to reward oneself with

so can you spot the difference;

Yes there are a few differences; second bagel and second cup of tea for one!! ;o)

Anyhow it did make me feel better given how rough I'd felt on the run - nasty - but I think I got the hill running about right (and I didn't quite barf at the top),

So that was all good really.

Alas, yesterday I had another bagel day of the no-training variety which wasn't so good. So no marmite reward for me then :o(

Still today has started brighter, already got in my swim (which should have been done last night). Followed my work outs in a binder "force" 2500m from 600m warm-up, then 6*150, 6*100, 6*50, 100 warm-down. Good oh!

ORN: 10.38km, 68mins
OSN: 2500, 62mins

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Hungerford Tri: Race Report


...did someone forget it IS SPRING!?

A clap of thunder woke me up..... took a quick look outta the window to see what was going on...

My race start time was 0850... I was still hugging my duvet!!! If I had tried to go I wouldn't have made it very far as at 0730 (which was my latest leaving time) a blizzard was blowing... and we just don't do snow in the Thames Valley. I took a look at the traffic cam by the M4 and only kinda saw one lane of the motorway (not three). Quick call to the club captain to find out even he wasn't going reassured me that the duvet was a perfect plan B!

So I didn't DNF'd nah... a DNS'd!! LOL!

Still it looked kinda pretty when I did get up;
But note I was rudely roused from my bed the second time by some "youths" throwing snowballs at my house... I don't mind that so much but a bit kinda stupid to aiming at the window... Hummm so I gave them a few choice words out of the window which saw the scurrying away!! Sometimes I can just be that "scary lady" at number x....

Why couldn't it have snowed in winter..... I've not seen proper snow here like this morning for quite a few years!

Am I disappointed I didn't race? Well kind of but to be honest I knew last night that the tri gods weren't shining on me anyhow.... Got home to a slow puncture in my rear tire (it's definitely the season for them, I've now had more punctures in the last 3 weeks then all of last year)...Fixed the puncture only for the new inner tube to bulge out ... stupidly I took a close look at the bulge for it to POP right in my face! More of a BANG then a POP I may add... lucky I wear glasses... Anyhow I fixed that new puncture and got to bed at midnight vowing that if the ground was white in the morning then I just wouldn't race.... and so it was.

Instead I've had some zzzz's today then did a 1hour turbo, (15mins warm-up/ down with 10*2'/1' intervals), followed by straight out for nearly 40mins run. Didn't push the run as I actually hadn't taken anywhere like enough food on board this morning or during ride to feel up to it!

Turns out this was a better option then the "race" anyhow.... having looked at the website a short while ago they turned it into a duathlon due to "inclement weather" ...LOL.... 400m swim and 2mile run.... so think it worked out ok in the end didn't it!

......Oh and as for the debate about my swim book;
- The book is "workouts in a binder" and yes comes in special water proof paper
- Drying every page after every swim..... WES you do have OCD ;o) LOL.... If only I had done that I don't think it would smell of gone off shoes as it does now... eugh... I think some detergent will see it right ;o)

OBN 30k 60mins (est turbo - worked quite hard interval session)
ORN 6.5k 38mins

Friday, April 04, 2008

Month Recap

Let's get the dull bit out of the way...

Marmite on bagel today * 2

I'm working from home today so easy access to the Marmite - temptation is just too high. At least I'm not the only one with this problem eh?! (See the comments here and here)

OK - I'm having a slow training week... Week 1 at work tends to start a bit busy then I've had a couple of lengthy days in London..... Still I have a race on Sunday (have you seen the forecast.. WTF!)... and for the record if it is 2 degrees and snowing I will not be racing through transition - no sir... I'm going to take as long as I need to put layers on including my overboots! This after all is a training race not an A race and I'd rather finish it without hypothermia thank you very much!

Anyhow where was I... I was going to blog my 4 week cycle summary.... From Monday 3 March to Sunday 30th was "Pre-Comp 1" not that I'm really following the original programme much anymore - that called for a total of 41hours training... Hummm I think not.. here's the numbers;

SWIM 11.8okm for 6hrs 22mins
BIKE 265.6km for 12hrs 26mins
RUN 32.5km for 3hrs 14mins
OTHER Body Balance 1hr 33mins

I have excluded my weekly 30mins slot with the physio from these numbers (now that would give me an extra couple of hours in total...oh oh plus the hour sports massage).. humm.. Now what did I say last month....:
1. More swimming needed... ok good i did that
2. Lack of running cos of back... Oh I managed to do half as much as when I had a lack of it "gulp" but at least I am running those k's faster (Build average pace 6.22 per km, this time 5.58) so good and bad.
Also similar biking in total but slightly faster...

I *SHOULD* be doing more body balance and more plyometric stuff - which I'm not really recording anyhow as it's the odd hop/skip/jump whenever I fit it in! I'm a bit worried I'm not getting enough time on my feet running - think I may slot in an extra run a week.

I wasn't ill enough at any point to take any "ill time outs" from training but I didn't train 8 days (lazy) during the period. That's double the allowance - but then it was Easter and I was on holiday and did spend like 16hours on a plane (approx 8 hours each way)... so I'm going to kind of let myself off on that one!

OK so then the month ahead, started this week - oh not a great start including a double bagel (no not the marmite but two non-training days already... ok maybe we should call it a double doughnut instead...)... It does include one triathlon (this Sunday) and a 110k Sportive too (27 April). The things to focus on; increasing swim, fitting in a long run, continued focus on run off bike and run pace.... not too much to ask for.. oh and there's that little thing called a HOLIDAY the week after next! :o)

Have a great weekend peeps - I'm praying that they've got the forecast really wrong for sunday!

OSN:.... Oh that reminds me... WES; So i usually take my "swim workouts in a binder" to the pool (excellent), don't always follow the sessions (but I did today endurance 1)... anyhow - I think it's beginning to smell... eugh... was thinking of dunking it in a cleaning solution the somehow drying out.... any suggestions?!?!

OSN: 2550 in 1hour 10mins

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

You either love it or you hate it

I love it

I'm worried I'm getting addicted

I go through this phases ... and I'm certainly in a big phase right now

I can't get enough of it

I managed a couple last week

More at the weekend

And have just gone crazy today, not just at Breakfast but evening tea too

I must stop

..... but I can't

... I want more..... I've already had two rounds this evening and I'm contemplating a third






on toast of course......

... I think I'm going to put another bagel in the toaster for some more marmite on toast - that'll be my third! Not the diet of champions ;o) There must be some vitamin in it that I just can't get anywhere else..... that's my excuse ;o)

Just for the record this week (I've finally succumbed to the Obligatory * Notes system given it's always on the blog in case you lose your diary...)

ORN: 4.92km, 30mins (10w-up, 10min 1'ints, 10min w-dwn)
OSN: 1.5km, 60mins