Thursday, May 29, 2008

Nothing left to do but race....

Wow hard to believe that it is only 3 more days to the "big" day. My mind goes over and over everything that I need to do. I am absolutely beside my self with excitement/nerves.

Lottie has a new rear derailer - have not rode her yet but will do so tonigt - fingers crossed that she is good to go. However I have a back-up just in case - one of the ladies I ride with lent me her old bike - she just upgraded and I must say it is a pretty nice ride and it has an actual Ironman sticker on it - I was pretty in awe when I saw that - wow I rode a bike that actually went to Ironman! It has to be a sign.

Picked up wetsuits, extra tubes, nutrition, waterbottles, sunscreen, and other miscellaneous items today. Will pack it all tonight.

Really it is all a matter of just doing the race now - I don't think I could do anymore training wise. I honestly believe that I have done all that I can do training and equipment wise.

I will report back next week with all the details. Oliver here I come.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Drama queen 101

I am like a long tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs. Still no word on the final prognosis of the bike. I try not to worry but for those that know me I am the world's biggest worrier at the best of times so this is almost unbearable.

Everything hangs in the balance - will I be racing or will I not? It is becoming a real possibility that I may not and that brings me to tears - foolish I know it is only a race but it is so very important to me. I guess I need to work on my priorities.

Questions are constant as I sit by the phone - will they be able to save her (the bike). If so how long will it last? Does she have it in her for one more big ride? Is there time to find a replacement? And where do I find the money? And will the new one be the right one.

I know it is only a bike but this was the bike I used in last year's epic Iron Mountain tri and so I guess I feel it needs to be the one I use in this year's. The emotional attachement is there it has been on a lot of brutal training rides with me and I guess I just want her to feel the taste of a great half Ironman before I retire her.

It really is like a bad soap opera and my worst nightmare. Please, please please fix her - I just need her for one more big ride. Pretty please.....

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Need - one tri bike will return on June 3...

Last night did the last ride up Cypress and it was harder than usual because my *#!&#?# chain kept skipping on the uphills and well for those that don't know Cypress is a friggin mountain. With 9 days to race day this is not good - actually potentially devastating.

So I went to the bike shop this morning they open at 10am and I was there a 9:59. He looked at the chain did a wiggle here a wiggle there and said that may do it. I rode it nope and then he rode it and came back and said yep it is skipping... (thanks sherlock). So then he starts talking about derailers and so on and I start to feel sick as I realize $$$$ and this is just a guesstimate on his part. So I call my father-in-law who gave me the bike - please note last year I wanted to buy myself a new bike but no my hubby and father-in-law came up with the solution that I would take one of his old bikes. More and more i regret getting talked into this...stupid Scottish heritage I should have resisted the idea of a deal.

So he talks to the guy in the shop and they decide new chain and block - whatever the hell that is... hopefully that will sort it out. HOPEFULLY ARE YOU *#&*!^ KIDDING ME! 9 days - did I mention 9 days for the race that I have poured my heart and soul into training for - that my friends have been making massive plans to come and cheer me at - 9 DAYS.

Deep breath - I almost sat down and cried but reigned that in and then I came very close to saying screw it - see that bike up there get it down and prep it - but then I thought - hmmm I do not want to be single anytime soon... So they have ordered the parts they think might work and I will cross my fingers that it will work and start saving for the new bike because I cannot cope with this kind of stress. Next year I am riding in IRonman on a new bike. Plan B - not sure but if I have to as a last resort - make no mistake- I will buy that bike and deal with the bitching later.

I have not worked this hard and come this close to not do this race!

So everybody do the bike prayer please. I am off to the local church.

Shaun

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Taper freakout

I do not know which is worse months of training or the taper period before a race. Honestly it is almost too much... Is my bike in perfect running order? Where is my list of stuff to pack? How much did I drink today - how much did I eat today. Hmm what is that ache - it is new?!? Did someone just cough on me - OMG where is the Cold FX??? And so on and so on - I a am just a smidge anal and slightly more obsessive.

Have been working on visualization techniques imagining my successful completion of each portion of the race. Broken down the race in parts as best I can since I have never even been to Oliver - so I am going in "blind".

Reviewing my training and wondering what I could do in the next 2 weeks that will give me that extra edge without doing anything monumentally stupid - ie tripping and spraining an ankle on a pine cone or pulling a muscle in my shoulder by moving heavy boxes, or.... as you can see I have a history....

So I have started to re-read the Ultra marathon man book - I thought of it a lot last year during the race and am glad I am re-reading. Dean Karnazes is the author and well "Ultra Marathon Man" and to read his exploits puts my little adventure in a more reasonable light. He has some great thoughts - "If it feels good you are not working hard enough - it is supposed to hurt!" I say that to my self when I start to hurt - good job girl - you are doing it right - embrace it and you know he is right - it seems to make me go a little harder.

But by far I love this the best, it was his thoughts just before running his first Western States 100 miler:

" ... it became clear to me that the Western States Endurance Run would be primarily about one thing: not giving up. It really didn't matter how long it took to get the job done; what mattered was getting it done. This was an exploration into the possibilities of self. Being a champion meant not quitting, no matter how tough the situation became, and no matter how badly the odds seemed stacked against you. If you had the courage, stamina and persistence to cross the finish line, you were a champion."

It is something I think about a lot - when I reflect on last year's race and I think of the task at hand in 11 days. It will be about one thing - not giving up. 11 more sleeps....

Friday, May 9, 2008

So many races so little time

Quiet time in the office allows for race searches - just a few selections my fav is the Elephant run - but I'll be honest The Sahara one looks interesting. North pole one - Are you kidding me - no thank you - I have limits -Ice is for drinks....

http://www.extrememarathons.com/addo/
http://www.saharamarathon.co.uk/about.html
http://www.npmarathon.com/

And of course still trying to figure out how I can convince my husband to let me do the Canadian Death race.... http://www.canadiandeathrace.com/

First lets get Ironman over and done with.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Humble pie

Last night we rode up to Cypress again - this time to the second lookout. I ride with 4 other ladies on a regular basis. Karen is quite younger - in her 20's, and is always gone. I have decided that my goal is to catch her or get closer to her every ride. Judith is also a strong rider and usually we play back and forth going up Cypress - always quite close so mentally I have decided that I need to stay ahead of her as a measure of my progress and improvement. No I am not competitive at all (LOL).

Anyways last night we are heading up Cypress and I get to the base of Cypress not far behind Karen and have to wait about 5 minutes for the others. YES - I am getting better. Then we head up Cypress - I keep Karen in my sights until the first look out - albeit it was close to a 1km between us I could still see her jersey. Judith started out in front but I pulled ahead quickly and stayed ahead for the rest of the ride up. I was feeling pretty smug. Now please no this is all mental stuff in my head. So we ride back down and I am feeling pretty good because I stayed with Karen all the way down - usually she would be gone and the others would fly by me. Then on the ride back to the cars I rode beside Karen along the highway. YEAH!!!!

Well we are back at the cars and talking and Judith is like yeah it was not too bad - I rode out to Horseshoe bay first and back so I could go up Cypress with you gals. Gulp.... I said you rode to Horseshoe Bay first today? Yeah she needed to get a 3 hour ride in and she did not want to do it on Thursday. Wow.

Shaun's little pride balloon developed a big leak. OMG - the woman is amazing - I doubt that I could have done that. How the hell am I going to do Ironman next year?!?! She was not that far behind me and I will be honest I was pushing the whole way. Some people have been saying they think I am overtraining and I listen to this lady and from what I can tell I am doing about the right amount and will have to do a hell of a lot more for Ironman. Yikes!

Can I have icecream with my pie please?

S

Monday, May 5, 2008

Doing the ears proud

Yesterday was just a great day. The weather was absolutely perfect to don my pace bunny ears for the Vancouver Half Marathon.

I really do like being a pace bunny, it is just a lot of fun to help people attain their goals and I think most of them got their goals.

I needed to get a training run in and they needed a 2:30 bunny for the half - it was a perfect fit.

Official time 2:28:21 - a bit fast but overall not bad since there were no course markers to help me judge my pace.

Ran into a bunch of the clinic grads and from all respects and quickly perusing official stats everyone seemed to have a great race! Makes a coach proud.

Then I got to watch the full marathoners finish which is always inspiring.

Just a great day all round really rejuvenated my spirit for the final training push to Oliver. Less than 4 weeks to go....