July 22, 2014

Weekend Wrap Up: Rice Cake to Nowhere Edition

I could write this entire blog post about how much time & effort went into these rice cakes. I could tell you how many grocery stores I went to, how many times I called Marshall Bassett while standing in the aluminum foil aisle of said grocery stores. I could even tell you how I forgot I don't own a rice cooker. Instead, I'll tell you this, I made rice cakes. No one ate them. The end. You're welcome.

The weather Saturday was not great. Mary Katherine & I had a long bike ride scheduled. Thus the aforementioned rice cakes. It kept raining & we kept pushing the start time back. Finally, it stopped raining & we drove out to Natchez Trace, only to get there & discover the entire Trace was covered in a dense fog. So we took a fog selfie, natch, turned around & drove back home.

Oh, that's right, I have a trainer! So much for getting out of my bike ride. I was pretty sure I wouldn't be able to sit on that thing for 3 hours, but I decided I'd at least have to make it through a movie. Also? I needed to ride long enough to eat one of those damn rice cakes. I watched the Tonya Harding documentary The Price of Gold (yeah, I did!). Thanks to Sarah Allen for the tip. It was only 1:18 long, so I needed to keep going. I made it to 1:40.

I met my lady gang on Sunday morning for run through West End/Vandy. Lana had been slaving away making jam all weekend (Jam On It), so we kindly took that off her hands. I'm real excited to try the peach cardamon!

I know it's July, but I need to practice swimming in my wetsuit. So I did. And I was fast as shit. I'll risk over-heating in Augusta to be able to swim this fast. Thanks, Emma!

I swam a good 45-60 minutes with Karen & Beth. It was a great open water swim practice. John & I spent the rest of the day doing house stuff. We finally gave the middle finger to Comcast, cancelled our cable & returned the DVR. We bought a second Roku & a digital antenna & set all that up on Sunday. Y'all, we're totes fine. Who knew I didn't need cable?! Well, besides my husband.

July 20, 2014

70.3 Training: Week 10

Week 10. Halfway to 20. Holy crap! Here's what my training looked like this week:


60 minute NAC Masters swim
45 minute open water swim (in a wetsuit)


1:03 hour bike ride (14.86 miles)
Avg mph:  14.1
2 mile brick (22:29 minutes)

1:51 hour bike ride (24.70 miles)
Avg mph:  13.3

1:40 hour trainer ride
Avg mph:  15.8
Avg HR:  123 bpm
Max HR:  142 bpm


2.96 mile run (29:45 minutes)
5.15 mile run (1:00 hour)

The weather in Tennessee this week was nuts. We had unusually cool, fall-like mornings & evenings. Like most runners, I'm faster in cooler temps & this week reflects that. My weight also dropped down another notch this week. I'm hovering in between 168-169. The last time I was under 170 was 2005. So... that's insane.

I've been having trouble shifting on my bike, so I dropped it off at Red Kite for a tune-up. The housing for my cables was split & starting to rust, so they replaced all that. The 'ole girl shifts like a dream now. I was also missing an important bolt somewhere integral to me not dying while in motion, so they replaced that, too. And I got a light for my Monday Night Ladies Rides!

I talked to my masters swim coach this week about open water swims. I'm getting faster in the pool, but it's not translating to open water. My endurance is good, but I need to swim faster, so she's going to start giving me 200m drills in the pool to get me faster in open water.

I'm doing Music City Olympic next Sunday, so this will be a taper week. I don't know how to taper for an Olympic while still training for a 70.3, but I guess I'll figure it out? This should be fun.

July 18, 2014

Birchbox Review: June

Caudalie Polyphenol C15 Anti-Wrinkle Defense Serum, $62

I've tried serums off & on, but overall, don't buy into them, a viewpoint my dermatologist shares. I'm just not convinced there's any benefit to using them & they're usually upwards of $60. Meh. But I used this teeny, tiny sample. It felt good on my face, but no idea if it had any benefit. It was only enough product to use 2-3 times.

Dr. Hauschka Body Wash, $22.95

The body wash sample I received is lemon lemongrass scent (yes, double lemon). I like the body wash, but not the scent. It's a personal thing. I don't like lemongrass & lemon reminds me of kitchen cleaning products.

English Laundry Signature for Her, $90

On a scale of hate to HATE, this falls closer to hate. I will say this, it's the closest Birchbox has gotten to actually sending me a scent I'd almost like. It's musky instead of floral, which is a start. It's not for me, but it's not terrible.

Gilchrist & Soames London Collection Body Lotion, $16

I love the scent of this lotion. It's crisp, clean & not heavy. Perfect for spring/summer. I used it initially as a body lotion, but I have dry skin & it wasn't moisturizing enough, but I love it as a hand lotion. I'll probably buy this. Love the scent!

LAQA & Co. Sheer Lip Lube Pencil, $18

I love this brand & am always excited when one of these lip pencils is in my box. The name of this one is weird:  "lip lube pencil"... But I like it. It feels great on - very moisturizing. I got the nude color. My card says Bees Knees, but the website says Boss Lady, so who knows which color I actually got. It's a matte nude, which I like to call 'skin lips'. If you haven't tried LAQA & Co., I recommend them. They're my favorite lip pencils & the bold colors are BOLD.

July 14, 2014

Weekend Wrap Up: What Is My Life Edition

My weekend started EARLY on Saturday. I got up at 4:45 to meet Mary Katherine & Julie for a 45-mile bike ride & 2-mile brick (run). I was back home by 11:00. It's real weird to exercise to that extreme & be back home before lunch, or before your husband is awake. It definitely set off the 'what is my life' mantra that continued throughout the weekend.

Oh yeah, this is my life. Duh.

My bike hasn't been shifting correctly, so I dropped it off at Red Kite for a tune-up & then went to check out the NRC West grand opening. While I was out ignoring the imminent atrophy of my quadriceps, I swung into Walgreens & bought this $5 nail pen. I'm into it. One thing, actually two things. One, put a top coat over it. I didn't & it came off the next day. Two, make sure you have someone around who can do your right (or left) hand.

I've been ignoring the 6:30am open water swim Mary Katherine does every Sunday because - well, it's a 6:30am open water swim on a Sunday. But I decided to try it this week because I am apparently a cyborg who no longer requires sleep on the weekends.

It was a good endurance swim, but I may need to supplement with other open water swims that incorporate speed work & drills. It's great practice if you've got an open water race coming up though, particularly olympic distance or greater.

After the swim, I did a real terrible 6-mile run with Jaime & then went home & transformed from triathlete into wife. Y'all, I have not worn makeup or real pants in like a month. At least. So I put on a dress, & a Tattly, natch, & went to lunch with my husband. We went to this real fancy place close to Vanderbilt. It's called Pizza Perfect. Joie de vivre.

You know our dog's named Linda McCartney, right? So surely you know my husband's love for The Beatles is next level. After lunch, we went over to the Belcourt to see the last showing of A Hard Day's Night. While we were waiting for the movie to start, John told me when this movie came out in 1964, his mom & her friends camped out at the movie theater & watched it over & over. I mean, I camped out for Glitter, but I only watched it once.

July 13, 2014

70.3 Training: Week 9

I read an interesting article this week that says while training for a 70.3, your run volume on a weekly basis should not exceed 20% of your bike volume in miles (article here). Luckily, one person in this house can do math & was available for consultation.

Bike volume:  80.87 miles
Run volume:  13.5 miles

My run volume was 17% of my bike volume this week, not exceeding the 20% rule. Hell, I may be doing this right afterall. Here's what my training looked like this week:


60 minute NAC Masters swim
60 minute open water endurance swim


1:53 hour bike ride (24.73 miles)
Avg mph:  13.1

60 minute bike ride (11.04 miles)
Avg mph:  11.1

3:05 hour bike ride (45.10 miles)
Avg mph:  14.6
2 mile brick (24:28 minutes)

80.87 total miles ridden


4.01 mile run (48:01 minutes)
3.49 mile run (38:15 minutes)
6.00 mile run (1:27 hour)

13.5 total miles ran

If you follow me on Facebook, first of all, I'm sorry, but secondly, you saw the litany of responses to my 'what to eat on a long ride' question. First prize goes to Alexis. That tuna casserole hot pot worked out great on Saturday - thanks! But seriously, HUGE thanks to Marshall for making PB&J rice cakes for me & Mary Katherine to eat during our 3-hour ride on Saturday. A) They were delicious. B) They totally worked! Sold! I'm buying this book.

I'm 11 weeks out from Augusta & this weekend I really started questioning my life choices. The bike ride on Saturday was biblical. My legs were shot. When we started the ride, I didn't think I could do it. I immediately fell back & let Julie & MK drop me. I rode the entire ride alone & honestly felt like it was the slowest I've ever ridden. Turns out, I rode it faster than last week. I don't know what that means, but I'm confident there's a lesson in there somewhere.

Today was stupid. I got up at 5:00am (on a Sunday) (I got up at 4:45am yesterday) to go open water swim with MK. We did an hour long endurance swim, I changed at the marina & then met Jaime for a 6 mile run. So that you accurately feel my pain, these were my splits today:


So yeah, today was stupid.

July 8, 2014

Weekend Wrap Up: 4th of July Edition

Friends who braid together, stay together. I've started copying Mary Katherine's braids for our long rides. I just like the way it looks, but MK says it keeps her from getting ponytail-related helmet-headaches. My favorite part about this picture is the body language of the guy standing in front of us. He told us afterwards that he didn't understand why we turned our backs to the camera. He's so sassily confused.

I snapped this pic mid-ride because I had never ridden this far on Natchez Trace before. I think it's I-840. Saturday was such a gorgeous day for a long Trace ride. It was 56 degrees when we started. We debated wearing arm warmers. In July!

After lunch & a nap, I pulled myself together & met Jaime & Lana at the Belcourt to see Obvious Child. None of us 100% knew what to expect from this movie, but we all liked it. I love Jenny Slate & the character she plays in this movie is hilarious. It's kind of an indie, rom-com, but it works. I liked it!

After the movie, we headed to The Stone Fox for dinner & drinks, except I didn't drink because I was barely awake at this point. Oh, and 'this point' was 7:00pm. Have I mentioned how much fun I am on weekends now?

On Sunday, I met Jaime & Lana for a torturous 6-mile run that I did not enjoy AT ALL. My legs were shot from the day before. Luckily, my body can basically run on auto-pilot at this point.

Most of the organized open water swims (OWS) were cancelled this weekend due to the 4th of July holiday, so when my friends Karen & Paul invited me to meet them at Anderson Road Rec Area on Sunday morning, I jumped at the chance. It was so crowded & choppy, but we got in a 1,000m swim. It was great practice for me because Paul is faster than I am & I could pace myself by trying to stay right behind him. Well, mostly. Thanks, Team Putnam!

July 6, 2014

70.3 Training: Week 8

I talked to a lot of people this week about training & realized the training plan I have been following is "intermediate" & a tad too advanced for me. But the "beginner" plan is too beginner. I'm basically the Goldilocks of free online training plans. So I'm making my own. I'm calling it, "Advanced Beginner".

Here's what my training looked like this week:


70 minute NAC Masters swim
1,000m OWS (open water swim)


90 minute bike class at Red Kite
10 minute brick

60 minute bike ride (12.19 miles)
Avg mph:  12.0

2:39 hour bike ride (37.96 miles)
Avg mph:  14.3
3 mile brick (34:44 minutes)


4.29 mile run (51:31 minutes)
3.17 mile run (36:37 minutes)
6.30 mile run (1:17 hour)

I also did a 45 minute core/strength class.

My bike ride on Saturday is the farthest I've ever ridden (37.96 miles). I rode with Mary Katherine on Natchez Trace. We rode out for 1:15, turned around & rode back for 1:15 (+ 9 minutes). I'm having some shifting issues, mostly that I don't know how to do it, but MK helped me & I got better. I did kind of bonk yesterday. I hit a wall around mile 30 & struggled to keep my speed up those last 8 miles. I only took 2 Huma gels & I needed a third. One day I'll get this nutrition right. One day. How I ran 3 miles after that ride is anyone's guess.

Next week we're scheduled to ride for 2:45. My plan is to wear a necklace of Huma gels with little Capri Sun straws poking out of them.

P.S. If someone can make me that necklace, that would be really great.


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