Friday, May 23, 2014

I got a "PROMOTION"!!

Well, bike camp was very successful for me b/c Elmar promoted me in the pool!!  (Obviously the swim sessions coached by Paul paid off....)  I have graduated from the 2nd --> 3rd lane (lane #1 = slow, lane #8 = fast).  I'll take that.

Bike camp was hard work, but I really enjoyed it.  6 solid days of riding around Vernon was so nice - country roads with minimal traffic - not quite the same as Spain, but still beautiful. Third time I've been on this Vernon camp with Jack.  First time with Paul coaching too and it was fun.   Focused purpose with each ride, with steady build from day to day and great coaching.

I made it up most of the climbs - occasionally switch-backed up the switch-backs!  Did have 2 climbs where I walked my bike - one just too steep for me.  The other just too fatigued - in the rain, in a headwind, getting cold, on a climb that seemed to go on forever.  My original plan was to climb until I met the rest of the group heading back.  Then I was like - where the #!*k is everyone?   This was on the Friday and we had another long day on Sat, so I pulled the plug and when I saw the truck before the group - I gave the "thumb's down" sign and called it a day.  I think I still had 4'ish km to go, but also wanted to do well on Sat, so I made the right call for me.  The weather overall was warm for the most part - I think we had some sprinkles on Wed and Friday was miserable and wet.

Sat was the ride in and around Penticton. I have good memories of Penticton as we vacationed there a lot when I was a kid.  I visited with my mom (we spread her ashes their after she passed away), so I had a chat with her at Skaha Lake.  The campground we always stayed at is still there - the trees are so BIG - 40 years is a long time ago!!

The other highlight was Jack's brother-in-law, Kelly!!  He's a registered massage therapist and not only did he drive the support truck all week - he did massages in the evening for us.  What a great bonus after a long day in the saddle.

Had a bit of a taper going into camp and a recovery week after camp, so things are ramping up again. Nephew's b'day in Drumheller on Sat, so that's where I'll be riding to.  My previous 2 rides to Drum have been in a headwind for 90 km, so I'm not expecting anything different tomorrow.

Happy training - Ciao, Cindy

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Desperate times lead to desperate measures....

So after dealing with many "broken" things an update....
  • New haircut (meh - it will grow)
  • New Garmin (I can even make it work)
  • New knee (not yet)
  • New & improved, faster run - let's not get carried away
Physio has led to progress; time to heal while minimizing irritation to my knee has been accomplished through water running; ice, as always, is my friend.  Water running more than 45 min is mind numbing, however, I've survived up to 1.5 hours --> really mind numbing!

Plan B - endorsed by the physio and the coach - try an anti-gravity treadmill for running. Enter Footjax and AlterG setup at Winsport Medical Clinic. I've had one trial session and the first of some scheduled sessions.  After the trial session, my quads and hams were a bit sore - like I'd been running! No knee pain!! I've decided to give it a try. Very interesting feeling - you put on a pair of neoprene shorts with a "skirt" attached, similar to a skirt that you'd wear while kayaking. Then you zip yourself into the air bladder of the treadmill, turn it on, it calibrates to your body weight. The air pressure can take up to 80% of your body weight - you can adjust speed, incline, % body weight and walk forward or reverse on the treadmill. We'll see how I feel tomorrow.....

I ran/walked for an hour on the antigravity treadmill and no pain in my knee the next day! I was able to maintain my heart rate in my prescribed zones by adjusting the incline and speed. I kept my body weight at 50% for the hour. I ran as fast as 9 mph (14 kph) - for about 30 seconds....  

I feel the advantage for me over water running (which I will continue) is that you're actually running with foot strike and toe off vs. water running where you can alter your technique quite a bit without realizing it. I do try to pay attention to technique with water running - knee drive and relaxed heel to butt with toe off, foot dorsiflexed as you approach mid-foot stance. The plan with the anti-gravity treadmill is to use it as a rehab tool to gradually increase my volume and the weight I take through my body. Relieving the impact on my knee joint is the key so we'll see how I go.  And.... it continues to be yet another example of how reducing my body weight will do only good things for me. Another challenge for me on the road to Ironman Arizona!

Off to bike camp in Vernon for a week with the Talisman Tri Club and the expert coaching of Jack and Paul.

Happy training - Ciao, Cindy