Friday, April 3, 2009

Are We There Yet?

On the way to pick up Brent for another LONG training day. Training in Hawaii would not be complete with out the Spam Musubi!

The past few weeks have felt like a road trip, a really long one across the country. The tank is full of gas, tons of fuel for the adventure, good tunes, everyone is along for the ride and happy to be part of the journey, the clothes are clean, the body feels good, and the conditions are favorable...

In our case, the coaches were the parents & the athletes the kids. After a while there would be no more tunes (I was busted by Coach Dan yesterday trying to sneak my IPOD up Kaloko), we began to wonder how much longer (nearly every training session went beyond the actual plan), much like kids in a car that were told we would be to grandmas in 4 hours, it took more like all day! We were instructed to eat our vegetables (I mean gels), and everything stinks! No more clean clothes, sandy-salty swim towels, socks that won't come clean (in fact, Justin wore the same shirt 9 days in a row and I noticed Brent in the same shorts the past couple days and today I wore the shorts I had on all day yesterday to swimming this morning). That's life on a road trip!

It gets better. After being in the car for hours upon hours (or in our case training hours upon hours) the body gets a little tight, sore, stiff, heavy, and worn down...are we there yet!!?? With great company some how the drive is still fun and the scenery (Queen K, Pacific Ocean, Kaloko, Hawi, Kona Pool, Waikoloa, Mana Road) are still beautiful. As the being stuffed in a car with the same people day after day after day after day, true colors come to surface. Luckily we managed pretty well...

Race day we cheered each other on, up the hills we played games (like Lindsay and I duking it out), and of course we shared (sort of). Lindsay Corbin left a TON of Cliff stuff & Brent McMahon left a ton of Power Bar stuff to Brent Poulsen, who was also left a ton of stuff from Justin, and now I have ALL Brent M., Justin's, Lindsay's, and Brent's stuff!! (thanks gang! No need for a nutrition sponsor, I got my team!) Not to mention Rick gave Kainoa and I a Jamba Card!!!. Oh, it isn't all "sharing and caring", I will leave out names, but we had a towel thief, someone who actually poured Brent's nutrition from his bottle into theirs! We had a car hog, and a few days where the heat & wind made some pretty hilarious tempers flare up! Oh, there is more, like Lavaman Triathlon, a certain someone was trying to steal my feet & completely clobbering me, (I feel the need to rat myself out), and I decided to show her a close up view of the coral...needless to say she never touched me again. And I owe Katya $50. (mom, can I have some money please??)

Ahhh, road trips!

Yesterday morning was another open water swim. We all had different goals, Brent was my partner, my plan was trying to find ways to keep up with Brent and coach had me work on a few different drafting skills and practice different scenarios. Perfect practice for me as I am always in need of a draft...

When all was said and done poor Brent was kicked in the collar bone, had finger nail scratches all over him, was elbowed, and abused. I felt so bad, so so so so so bad for him. Like the trooper he is he just swam harder when I would have shown me a close up of the coral!

During this session we also helped the age groupers with pre-race warm up. Most of them just get to the start of the swim and go. Or they don't really even have an idea what to do for warm up. This Lavacamp has been loads of fun getting to meet & work with so many great athletes (most beginners). I love seeing people start out in sport, it reminds me of my first triathlon where I raced in a bikini because I just didn't know any better...

Okay... here are some notes on the swim-warm-up... Warm up is so important, it wakes up the body, let's it know there is work to be done, and you have less chance of injury when you are properly prepared. (think about swimming with your masters, you never just jump in and go into a main set, you "warm up", the same holds true for race day. It's a misconception that it will use up your energy and take away from the race... it will make you race better!!

  • Warm up about 30 minutes pre-race for about 15 minutes
  • Start with some arm circles on shore while you check out the swim course and look for your lines and locate all the buoys
  • Spend roughly the first 10 minutes doing loose, easy free. Stretch out and get a feel for the water (try not to rush this). Swim out to sea or lake and look into to shore, notice where your swim exit is and find something to sight off.
  • Take about 5 minutes to wake up the other muscles. A little back stroke, some drills, anything to open up the joints in the arms/shoulders and get you feeling water and getting your stroke awake
  • Time for some pick ups! This is a big fear-that going hard or fast in a swim warm up will waist energy you could save for the race... WRONG. You need to get the heart rate up and let the muscles know you have work to do. They don't like surprises!!
  • An idea of pick ups are 30 strokes fast/20 easy 5x through. Get the arms turning over and the legs moving
  • Cool down into shore
  • STAY WARM on shore waiting for your swim wave! Please don't stand there shivering, causing the muscles to tighten. Have a towel or long sleeves with you. If you are at the race alone and don't have anyone to take your towel for you use something old and just leave it on the beach, if it's not there when you are finished racing no biggie.

Sabrina & Lindsay ready to climb...

After the swim we road from Waikoloa to Hina Lani, regrouped, and prepared for Kaloko-round 2. Kriss (Maui girl) and I on the far left of this foto were already cold (it gets cold and rainy at the top, us Hawaii girls were decked out in arm warmers!!) I had one mission, get up it faster this week than last week. Last week I was on the road bike, this week I took the tri bike...

Brent was off in a jiffy as he was on a mission to beat Lance Armstrong's 47min. Kaloko record. (he busted out a 49!) I was getting busted for the IPOD, and started the climb (Hina Lani with Lindsay and Sabrina). Coach told us to warm up that section & Mamalahoa and race the 6.5 of Kaloko...

So, as girls on a mission, we warmed up... poor Sabrina, Lindsay and I were heckling her to move it and stay with us, she had no idea what she was in for (she missed the climb last week). We used the warm up climb to talk about boys... that was fun... about the time Sabrina said the warm was a lot like contractions when giving child birth Lindsay and I were off!

We worked that hill for all it was worth! Nearing the top coach pulled up and coached us through a tough spot. Then he said all the "coachy" things that make you "race" rather than ride and Lindsay and I soon found ourselves racing! She is one of the fastest cyclists Canada ever saw, (Maggs and I nick named her Quadzilla). The race was on, she was yelling up the hill to me and I was yelling back to her...a few cuss words came out too...but they were just to ride harder and cause a laugh...

Once to the top, (Hue Hue St. go left, there is a 1 mile final climb of 18%) legs on fire, lack of oxygen, everything aching, we set new personal bests! I was 2 minutes faster this week on the tri bike and she smashed her time from last week too!

AND yes, I got a ride down the hill! I am a big chicken at down hills, anytime a bike reaches the 60's (mph) I want off that ride! All I could see was falling and getting paralyzed and never being able to hold Kainoa again! (yeah, ugly thought), so I cried like a baby and coach finally let me in the support vehicle after 1 mile of holding my brakes for dear life! Oh don't worry he says, you'll be back and you will learn to ride down hills...
Finally, legs up! It was a long day. A long few weeks. This morning was a swim, chiro/ART (thank you Oden you fixed me! My body was in 13 pieces when I saw him), then a massage (I fell asleep! Snoring involved), then lunch, now more legs up. Laundry is next on the list, then retrieve Kainoa from school! TOMORROW is a DAY OFF! What do I do??

No more "Are we there yet?". A huge chunk of pre-season work has been done! It's in the bank. Now time to recover-rebuild- and do it again!!

To my great coaches, my incredible team, THANK YOU! To my sponsors & manager for supplying everything I need to make this life possible, THANK YOU! To Dawn and Oden for putting my smashed body back together, THANK YOU! To the age group athletes I got to meet during the Lavacamp IT WAS AN HONOR!! Please keep in touch, I hope to see you at the races! To Rick for the Jamba Card THANK YOU! To the children at the Keiki Triathlon, you remind me to LOVE sport and smile, THANK YOU!

Happy Training!



Blogger IronBob (swimming upstream at IMAZ 08) said...

Good write up. I'm not sure of many tris where you need to go 60 down hills (Lanzorate or St. Croix??), so better safe than sorry.
Take it easy on your day off, you deserve it..

April 3, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Blogger Sherry said...

A day off! Yay! Enjoy!

It's interesting that you wrote about the importance of a warm-up. I'm so new at all of this that I'm learning new things nearly daily. Heather asked me to do an 800 yd TT as part of my swim today. I was a wee bit nervous when I saw that the warm-up was a 900! Like most newbies, I was scared that the warm-up would sap my energy and then I would poop out on the TT. Happy to say that wasn't the case at all. Warming up... important stuff! Thanks for the pre-race tips. :o)

April 3, 2009 at 3:19 PM

Blogger t-odd said...

You left out THE single most important part of the swim warm-up - find a nice space clear of others and pee. I mean come on - any chance to skip the port-a-potties and not get busted. Being a former collegiate swimmer, I totally concur with the importance of a swim warm-up. I have seen too many shoulders blown from lack of warm-up. I am going to have to do one of those camps some year - they sound like painfully good fun. Keep having a good time!

April 3, 2009 at 4:32 PM

Blogger Maggs said...

Warm up is the time when you are supposed to look at the fish and turtles. It's my favorite part of the race!

April 3, 2009 at 5:02 PM

Blogger Steve Stenzel said...

Thanks for the swimming warm-up tips! I'll use those Sunday down here at IM NOLA 70.3!!

April 3, 2009 at 5:14 PM

Blogger bart said...

great post! Just one question: Whose are the bendy legs? (Must be all the pavement poundig you people do... ;-)
Thanks for all the tips - nutrition yesterday, warmup today. What's up for tomorrow?? B

April 4, 2009 at 4:54 AM

Blogger LeAnn said...

OMG, I love the picture of the spam musubi!!!

April 4, 2009 at 5:28 AM

Blogger Running~Jordan said...

What is this spam musubi? I'll have to get out the google. I made your recovery cookies today and they are delish! I'm bringing them to swim practice Monday morning :) Thanks!

April 4, 2009 at 3:27 PM

Blogger Bruce Stewart (ブルース・スチュワート) said...

ありがとございます! It's great reading your postings but it makes me feel like I'm training for the centenarians' swim race.
Thanks for the information on warming up. My current workouts tend to be 1,500m of warm up, followed by 2 x 50m where I try to let fly! I'm still very slow, but no shoulder discomfort.

April 4, 2009 at 3:52 PM

Blogger Runner Leana said...

Thanks for those swim warm up tips! I'm pretty nervous for my first OWS tri next month and all these tips are helping so much!!

April 4, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Blogger Go Gammie said...

Thanks for posting the swim warm ups. As I read through I forgot some of them from LAVACAMP already. Now I can turn to your blog for more than just recipes :)
Thanks for all the help at LAVACAMP, it was so much fun to be with such amazing people. Have a great week!!!

April 4, 2009 at 6:00 PM

Blogger Missy said... if I can just get a grip on the cool down part. I'm usually in a hurry to get out or get home. I've got to get a grip on that. Thanks for the tips.

April 5, 2009 at 4:34 AM


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