Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Wow, ok its been 10 days! Warning: this will be a long one! Part 2 or deux (thats for you LaDonna!)

So the last time we left the daring wanna-be triathlete had stricken with a 17 month old that wouldn't sleep and was sorely tired.  Enter Mama to the rescue!  Upon her return a week ago, Noah magically began to sleep again..through the night...now why didn't he do that for me?  Well I was very glad to have the whole family back, and last Tuesday decided to get up and get back on the horse (sea-horse actually) and I went to the gym and practiced all the drills from Master's swim from the previous week, since I hadn't had a chance to get to the gym for the past 5 days and needed to shed my couch potato status.  This came back to bite me later that night (note to self: do not swim 10 laps in the morning, then 12 more at the Master's class. Hint: you will be dead in the water) as I struggled the last 20 minutes of my Masters class.  Maybe those people that can swim wouldn't be so tired, but while I am not thrashing and kicking as much, it still wears me out.  I have trouble with my arms, Teresa, our drill swim instructor, keeps reminding me to bend my arm and keep it up as I continue with my stroke.  Needless to say I need to practice....LOTS of practice.  On Wed last week I had the day off to be with the kids since they had no daycare, and of course we got the damn snow storm.  I managed to get to LTF and Emma was great in helping Noah adjust to the kids center, so I went on a quick run (2.1 miles) and my leg felt great, it was such a great feeling!  That was definitely a high note of the week.  Thursday and Friday weren't too bad, I did some cycling (11 miles in 35 min not bad) and perhaps on Thursday (31st) I will attempt a spin class.  Would it be rude to take pictures with my iphone during the class? Have to sneak them I guess.

This past weekend I decided to take the training wheels off and do a run with the Team.  I was feeling great and that everything was on the mend.  We ran on Gateway Trail in Maplewood (very nice trail if you are looking for something new to run on).  However, again it was very icy and cold (I am officially joining the boycott winter bandwagon).  I started out feeling fine, but after a mile the calf was tight and sore (not the pain whenever my foot strikes, but just a terrible tight sensation 1-2 inches about the achilles tendon.  I stretched and walked to allow it some time to feel better, which it did.  However I was still in some discomfort, and when I finished the 4 miles I could feel my leg which felt not the greatest. :(  So this week I hope I can feel good enough to attempt some more mileage this weekend.  X FINGERS!!!  After the run we had a group Team social at Perkins.  It was pretty fun, and I will post some more photos tomorrow. I need to sleep.....sleeepppp...whahsleep...

Monday, March 28, 2011

Wow, ok its been 10 days! Warning: this will be a long one! Part 1

Since my last post, I have been wearing all kinds of hats:  single parent/Mr. Mom (no fun!), wanna-be couch potato (I'll explain), and my favorite: busy husband/runner/wanna-be swimmer/cyclist.

About a week and half ago, my wife and daughter went to Iowa to help out my mother-in-law who had surgery (she was diagnosed with breast cancer, discovered early, so she had a mastectomy).  That left me and Mini-me (17 month old Noah) on our own for about 5 days.  Call me Mr. Mom! And the return of the couch potato! (Didn't get to the gym at all, and too cold to run with Noah.....) Well, not really according to Noah, he prefers the real Mommy lol.  He's at the stage where he wants Mama all the time, Dad, not so much.  He didn't realize they were gone really until Friday (they left on Wed) and he went to the bedrooms and was just looking to see where they were.  Not finding them he would toddle over to me and make a whahaha?!?!? and point to the empty rooms.  Seeing Mama on Skype made him happy so did having spaghetti for supper:

I got spaghetti in my belly...face...hands...hair...everywhere!
 Mini-Me had a good time over the weekend too, we went to the Children's Museum (where he ruled at the Habitot!)  He loves running down the ramp and also playing with the blocks:

On  your Mark, Get set.....GO!
  Then on Sunday I baked cupcakes with Noah's help of course!  These were for my bake sale at work.  I work for the National Marrow Donor Program, and we are having a 5K to raise money for the Be the Match Foundation, which is responsible for maintaining the National Bone Marrow Registry.  If you need a bone marrow transplant, we help find the correct match for you.  So I was making these delicious cupcakes (filled no less!) and Noah was the taste tester:

They tasted even better than they looked!

Noah agreed too he got to eat one!  The bake sale at work was a success, we ended up making $363.50.  Grand total for my Team is $1948!  Proud to say that my Team is in the #1 spot for funds raised. 
So that was a great achievement a week ago from today, and also Maria and Emma came home!  The house wasn't a mess, I had done the laundry, the only thing that I hadn't got while they were gone was sleep.  Noah didn't like Mama being gone and didn't sleep thru the night the whole time they were gone.  Needless to say very happy to see Mama again! 

Ok that brings me to Part 2 which will be posted tomorrow, more running/swimming/biking hilarity I promise!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Hello Spring and Swim/Run/Bike? Nope, Bike/Swim/Run!

Hello Spring!  The sun is shining today, the birds are chirping, and I can see blue sky!!! I hope winter is at its end, especially because this past Saturday I finally got to run outside with the Team along Shepard Rd.
Or should I say skate?  It was 18 degrees and the trail was iced over, lots of walkers and runners slipping on the ice. Our distance was supposed to be 10 miles, but with recovering the last 2.5 weeks from my Achilles tendonitis, I only did 4 miles.  AND IT FELT GOOD!  I did get a little soreness from my right calf above the tendon, however it didn’t send a sharp spike of pain each time my foot hit.  I walked after 2 miles and stretched it, then proceeded to run the grueling hill and remainder of the trail back…in the 25mph wind!  Call me Chillie Willie, because it was freezing with the wind hitting you on the trail as it overlooked the river.  Luckily I had 5 layers on from the waist down, and 4 from the waist up, nothing got frozen thankfully (though all my male teammates discussed ways of keeping the manbits warm, from the simple “put a sock on it” from Mike, to the application of strategically placed hand warmers, Paul. LOL).
Despite the cold, it felt great to finally run and not experience the debilitating pain I was having.  I am slowly going forward from here, I don’t want to screw it up again, so I will decrease the mileage and speed for now until I feel like I can handle it.  I hope to still run the full Minneapolis marathon, but I may have to drop to the half just because of my training has been delayed.  We will see and I will keep you posted.

It’s the middle of the week and what have I done? I have been training for the triathlon, I actually got in some time to Bike, Swim, and Run (not the typical Swim/Bike/Run) the last 3 days.  After getting some nice cycle shorts (see pic below, they are very comfortable, especially for this novice cyclist I was afraid of neutering myself on those plastic blades they call a seat.)  I did get a pair at Penn Cycle, and got a nice discount because I am LTF member.

Comfortable and padded!

Shorts in hand err on...I have been conquering the bike.  I need to step up my game and try a spin class at LTF, which I think I will do next week.  I feel very hesitant/nervous about that, I am picturing some super tan, muscular, spandex clad foaming at the month instructor screaming at me over techno music so loud it rattles my chest…..ok maybe that’s my imagination running wild, I’ll report back to you next week about my Spin Class experience.  I did do 10.3 miles in 35 minutes, and then did some abwork and stretches to round out my workout.

Tuesday of course is…..Masters Beginners Swim!  But, I have a secret weapon:  Tyr short fins! 

These are amazing!!!!! Can I wear them for the triathlon?

At the suggestion of Teresa, the instructor, I went and purchased a pair at Elsmore Aquatic in Apple Vally:  http://www.elsmoreswim.com/.  They were a nice knowledgeable bunch!  Maybe I will go back and invest in a speedo (not the bikini/banana hammock!) jammer, its like compression shorts and have a 9inch inseam so there not too skimpy, however they leave little to the imagination, nothing says hello like wearing skin tight spandex/neoprene among strangers! Back to the short fins, they work amazingly in helping my kicking (I am slowly getting there to kicking more with my hip, I still got the knee kick going, but working on it!)  They help me so much and I can focus on my form and also technique with my arms.  We had to take them off at the end, and I sorely missed them, and my legs were doing that spastic kick at the knee because I was so used to the fins.  It seems like cheating, but the fins also help build your leg muscles and help in training.  I struggled in the first 2 lessons, mainly because I don’t have a good kick, and I can work on that with a kickboard and these fins.  I am feeling more confident in the water, finally!  We have a lot of drills that focus on how we move the arms, how they enter the water, and how we recover on the stroke.  I am trying to practice at least 2X a week, I should do more, because I need it!

Finally this morning I ran on the treadmill, and did 2.6 miles in 30 min, which of course isn’t the fastest, but the key thing I am doing is just easing back in gradually to my run workouts.  I got to the gym late, so I didn’t have time to do some weights, but did manage to stretch at least.  Noah was up from 1:15 til about 3am, so I got up later than I wanted.  Take the time to train, no matter what, even though sleep sounded much better than going to the gym, I will hopefully reap the rewards come race day for my dedication!

So lets see so far this week: 10.3 miles on the bike, 2.6 mile run, and did maybe 14?15? laps in the pool so maybe .2 miles? Felt like 2 miles by the time we were done. 

The rest of the week my training is still unclear, Maria will be in Iowa the rest of the week with Emma, so it will just be Mini-Me and Me :-)  Maybe I will take him to daycare at LTF (Germ alert!) and I can get a workout in or if its warm, go for a nice fast walk/job with him in the stroller. Have a nice mid-week!


Thursday, March 10, 2011

What has past in the last 2 weeks....Injury.Recovery.Sleep Deprivation.Swimming!!!

OK....whew, where did last week go?  It got sucked down that black hole of sickness, family, work....frankly I finally feel like a normal person!

Last week Noah was sick, he had this horrible cough, and his poor little nose was clogged with snot AND he was teething (with a 100 temp at night!!)...the trifecta!   Poor guy, couldn't sleep at night :-(  Tylenol and Motrin were our friends last week, and they made Noah feel better.  We were worried that he might have a fever and made a trip to the doctor, where he assured us it was just a severe head cold.  Noah, apparently takes after me and has a great memory, because he remembers the doctors office.  As soon as the door opened, he stopped, stared at the nurse that called his name, and these enormous tears welled up and rolled down his fat cheeks......and he ran the other way!!!! I chased him down and took him inside and he screamed and wailed the entire time we waited in the exam room, when the doc came in, and finally stopped as soon as we got into the waiting room.....whew. Maria's turn next time. :-)

Yes this is what Noah looked like for 15 minutes

So for about a week, he didn't sleep because the snot would cause him to choke when he slept.  Maria and I got about 2 hrs of uninterrupted sleep each night...and to be fair Maria less than I because he prefers her to me when he is sick.  She is the best mommy and wife! (next time I think she will just kick me out of the bed and wake me up lol).

I am happy to say he is much better!!! 4 days of sleeping thru the night! Crossing my fingers/hitting my head (knock on wood, right?)

In my training news a big thing has happened!  My Masters Swim!!!!!!
I was really nervous for the first class because I feel like a giant bull trying to swim...

Sadly the Bull looks better in the water than I do!

However, my fears were soon assuaged (a good word isn't it? Thanks word a day calendar!)  Teresa, the instructor, for the Beginners Masters Swim at LTF Eagan, is awesome!!!!  There is only 5 of us in the class and after we did a warm-up swim of 2 laps (I thrashed and kicked 1 lap only) I realized I wasn't that bad (there was one person worse than me, thankfully)  My friend Paul is also taking the class so that helps I know someone too in the class!  Teresa put us through some drills, learning basically balance in the water, how our bodies feel in the water, and trying to be long in the water.  By the end of the first session, I was beat, mostly because I still don't kick correctly (I kick from the knee, not the hip).  But it was a good tired, because I really think this class will help me with technique, form, and most of all the confidence to swim 1/3 mile in open water in July!

Also in the past 2 weeks I have recovered from my Achilles tendonitis...no RUNNING!!!  I did do some cycling on the bike, and of course swam, and practiced that.  It was really depressing that I couldn't run, but I did as the Dr. ordered.  I moped for a week I must say, but now I can start easing back in to running which is nice.  I did a short 5 min out and back last night at our Team workout and the leg felt good!  I will hopefully put up a widget with my mileage soon!

On another note, I am running with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training, as you have noticed.  Raising money to help those who have blood cancers is important to me, I work everyday to help patients find a donor for a bone marrow or stem cell transplant.  LLS is a great organization, and I love Team in Training.  I also run in honor of those who have survived cancer and those undergoing treatment.  Right now, my honoree is Alie, she is 8 years old and just had a cord blood transplant to hopefully cure her leukemia that has returned for the 3rd time.  She is a strong, courageous girl, and I would like to leave you with her CaringBridge site:


Keep her in your thoughts and prayers and she continues to fight for her life.  If you want to help, join the Be the Match Registry and help save a life.  There is a link on my blog, and you can visit www.marrow.org too.   Next update will be this weekend I promise!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

OK OK OK...I am not dead!

For the few who follow my blog, I have not died, even though the last 2 weeks I have almost keeled over from exhaustion.  Noah (my 17 month old) was sick all last week and didnt sleep very well at night, meaning I was a zombie all last week.  I will work on an update on what I have been up to; resting my sore Achilles heel, taking my first Masters Swim Class, the funny process of me finding a pair of cycling shorts (is it a shammy or chamois?) and of course some Team in Training stuff!  All right I need to sleep!!!!  Post will be up tomorrow!