Monday, July 27, 2009

Spudman 2009 Race Report

Friday morning (after my dad picked up my kids) I rushed to the finish line of the marathon with my friend's kids to watch her and her husband come in. When I got there, they were already sitting there stretching. They did an awesome job, even in the heat!

That afternoon, Pete and I packed up and headed to Burley, Idaho. It's about 3 1/2 hours north of here. I was only expecting only 2 hours for some reason so we got there later than we had hoped. We needed to get there early because, in putting our names in the lottery, I accidentally signed us up as a relay team, and we needed to change that. Luckily we were able to get everything figured out, so both of us could race! It would have been sad if we had to do the relay, we were fighting over who would get to do the swim. :)

The course is right on a golf course, and they just have everyone park on the driving range where a lot of people end up staying all night. Some people set up tents or had camping trailers, but some people just made themselves beds on the ground or in their cars - that's what we did. We brought the memory foam padding off our bed, then folded all the back seats in the Jeep down to make nice little bed. Pete had to run to the store before bed, though, for mosquito repellant since it was too hot to leave the windows up, and being right on the river meant a lot of mosquitos. 

It was really cool to wake up and already be at the race! The only problem was that we still needed to drop our water bottles and bike stuff off at T1 which was down-stream about a mile. Well, we thought this would be no big deal, but it ended up taking us forever to get back because that's what everyone was doing. It would have been better to walk. We got back to the start, just before Pete's wave was about to start, and we still hadn't put our run gear in T2. I told him to go ahead, and that I would just put his stuff in transition for him, and he made it to the water right as the gun went off.

I headed over to T2 to set up our stuff, and it turned out that the spots weren't numbered or anything so I just had to pick somewhere and hope Pete would be able to find it. All the good spots were taken of course, so after a lot of deliberation, I put it in the closest/best place I thought he'd look. I tried to make it as visible as possible, but there wasn't much I could do.

My wave didn't start until, I think, 35 minutes after Pete's so I had plenty of time to get my wetsuit on, then get in the water and swim against the current to warm up. 

This is  a big river (at least according to my standards. We don't have rivers like this in Utah), and it doesn't look like it has much of a current, but as soon as you get in, you're moving. I was excited to see how fast I could do it! The only problem was that they didn't have any buoys so there wasn't anything to site off of, and there was also no way of knowing how far you've gone or where you were going to get out. I pretty much just watched the people in front of me.

When I got out of the water, I looked at my watch and it said 18 something! Wow, that's almost 15 minutes off my last olympic distance time in a lake! I decided to shoot for a total time of 2:45 since that would be 15 minutes off my total time at BAM.

I got on the bike, and really pushed it. I was shooting for an average time of 20 mph so I was watching my speed a lot. I had my heart-rate monitor on, but I just didn't worry about the fact that it was between 165 and 170 the whole time. I wasn't able to get going faster than 23mph, but I never went slower than 17 either. It's a really fast, flat course!

There was a big group of women that I passed pretty quick, but then they passed me right back up. This went on the whole time. I would pass them, then they would all show back up, but then they'd get in front of me and slow down. Some of them were very obviously drafting (which is not allowed) and that made me mad, and even more determined to get away from them. At one point, as I broke away from them again, I said, "Come on, this isn't the Tour de France!" Later, someone who passed me said, "1427, you're not allowed to draft!" I was happy someone voiced the same thoughts I was having.

I kept telling myself that I was hard core, I was an Ironman, I could beat these girls! It was hard work, and I'm actually glad they were there because I probably pushed myself more than normal because of them. They stayed pretty close to me the whole time, but I finished the bike before all but 2 or 3 of them.

Of course, all of them, and many more, passed me on the run. 

The run was nice and flat, but I was tired from pushing it so hard on the bike, and it was really hot by now. It was nice that a lot of people were out with their hoses the spray us, and I would dump the water from the aid stations on my head. I don't think I've ever done that before, but boy did it feel good! I was able to keep a nice steady 10-minute mile pace for the whole 10k, and I was happy with that, and happy my knee didn't hurt at all. I did feel really slow with so many people passing me, though.

Pete was there waiting for me when I crossed the finish line. I was so happy that I forgot to look at my watch for a minute, but when I looked it said 2:43!

It was a great race, and I went and jumped in the river while Pete waited in the long line for fruit. It felt so good! After we ate and stretched, Pete and I both jumped in and played around like a couple of kids. Having that river to jump in afterwards is one of my favorite things about this race. There are a lot of things I like, though.

Here are my times:

Total time 2:42:14Behind leader 27:27Swim 18:16T1 time 3:50Bike 1:13:19T2 time 3:58Run 01:02:49

I was 23 out of 77 in my age group, but only 12 people beat my time on the bike, and only 12 on the swim! Having 29 people beat me on the run split clearly indicates where I have some work to do.

Pete ended up looking around for his running stuff for about 10 minutes so we learned our lesson there, not that there was much we could do at the time. Here are his times:

Total time  
Behind leader
T2 (ouch)

Pete says that when I get to where I can average 22 mph on the bike, he'll buy me a P2! :) I don't know if I'd dare ride such an expensive bike, though.

Thursday, July 23, 2009


This morning I got up early to go running. I thought that if I just took it easy, my knee wouldn't hurt. Well, I felt good for the first 3 miles or so, but then on the way home it did start hurting. I walked the last 3 or 4 blocks feeling very disappointed. Maybe Spudman will be harder for me than I thought. It's weird that 6 miles used to be my shortest run, and now I can't even do it. I don't know what happened. Pete thinks I might need to go see a physical therapist. We'll see how Saturday goes.

When I got home, the kids were all sitting downstairs watching TV. Ethan says, "We're watching a Toby movie!" I thought he meant some cartoon, but when I went down to look, I saw that they were watching an infomercial for The Tobi! I immediately changed it to some cartoons for them, then went up to stretch and get ready for the day.

Two hours later, on the way to swimming lessons, Ethan asked us what dust mites are. We explained to him that they were little bugs that live in your pillow that eat dead skin. Then he informed us that The Tobi kills dust mites. He told me I should get one someday. I was like, "Oh really?" and he says, "Then you wouldn't have to struggle with the buttons!" 

I couldn't help it. I just burst out laughing. He didn't mind the fact that I was laughing, though. He continued to tell me, very excitedly, that The Tobi goes right over buttons! I laughed almost the whole way to swimming lessons.

I'm going to have to be more careful about what those kids watch. The other day they watched one about a blender, and now there is just no end to him telling me all about what we can make in a blender. "You put in something that you don't like, and it comes out as something you like!" 

Ah, TV!

Tonight my old roommate, her husband and two kids from San Francisco are spending the night at our house. What an exciting night it has been too! I sure hope they're able to get their kids to sleep soon because they've got to get up at 3 am for the marathon they're doing tomorrow. We're going to keep their kids while they run, then my dad is going to come pick our kids up for the weekend so we can head up to Burley for Spudman. It should be a fun morning for everyone! I'm sure glad I'm not doing a marathon tomorrow, though. :)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What now?

I've been pretty much computer-less since mine got stolen. Now I have to sneak time on Pete's, and I don't ever want to take too much time to write in my blog. Not that there's much to write about right now. We got some curtains and put them up. They are really nice, and make our house feel more cozy, plus they make us feel more secure. I'd put a picture up, but alas, no camera. There are two layers, white semi-sheer and dark green.

The best part about not having a computer or worrying about writing on my blog every night, training hard every day and running people around, is that the house is actually pretty clean now! It's awesome. I have a nice house (It's easy to forget when it's covered in clutter).

I haven't been running in a week because last Wednesday I went out for a 6-mile temp run and practically walked the whole way home because my knee was hurting so bad. Where did that come from? I haven't really had any problems with my running in forever. I'm so glad I didn't have any problems training for Ironman, though! Whew! I think it was just hurting because of all the speed work I've suddenly introduced so I decided to take it easy since I've got Spudman on Saturday. I think I'll go for a nice, easy, hour-long run in the morning, though.

I did get out on my bike this Saturday for a nice 3-hour long ride. I went up to Friut Heights, which I've never been to before, and I've always thought it was "Fru Heights" by the way I've heard it pronounced. It's really pretty up there, and it was fun to get into a little bit of new territory. It did bring my average speed down a bit, though, since I had to go up a long hill to get there. I did 46 miles in 3 hours, with my average speed at 15.6 (If I remember correctly). I was going over 20 mph for a lot of it, though. It was fun! 

So you can see that I haven't been totally slacking in my training, but it's not like I'm even close to doing something every day like I was back in my old Ironman training days. I kind of have this feeling like "what's the point of even getting up in the morning?" or something. I can't explain it. After all that build up and hard work to get to Ironman, and now it's just over. It's really weird. Pete said he felt like that too. 

I have Spudman coming up, and I'm trying to just be really excited about that, but it's not like I'm worried I won't be able to do it or anything. I've lost that fear that makes triathlon so fun! What should I do now? (Ok, it's not like I'm going to give up triathlon or anything because that's just crazy, but I need something.)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Joys of City Life

Today, after church, we did our usual have lunch then make the kids play downstairs so we could take a nap. I only laid down for about an hour 1:30-2:30, then I got up and went to get on my computer. Well, the laptop was gone. The first thing I thought was that Pete just moved it, even though I couldn't think of when he would have done that since he laid down before. I didn't worry too much about it, and just went about my day making snacks and cleaning up the kitchen.

When Pete got up he said, "Where's your computer?" and I said, "That's what I was wondering." So, it wasn't him who had moved it. I had already asked the kids and they didn't know anything about it. They never move the computers so I never really thought it was them. Then I noticed there was this gas station fountain drink cup sitting on the desk where the laptop should have been.


It was getting water on the papers on the desk so, without thinking, I just took it too the sink and dumped it out. Pete said, "You might not want to touch that very much." I was like, "Oh, right." and put it down. I felt so dumb, like one of those people in the movies who come onto a crime scene, see a knife and pick it up. Hello!

Anyway, Pete called the police and they came and looked around, got all the info, took pictures and dusted for prints. It was not easy to keep the kids from touching everything. Our house was crime scene! The crime lab lady said she got a pretty good print off one of the cords that was plugged into the laptop.

Oh, and they took Pete's laptop bag.

Oh, and they took my camera that was sitting right on top of the laptop because I had just imported all Min's birthday photos onto the computer. I'm so sad that I won't have a picture of the pretty barbie cake I made for her! We're hoping it got backed up automatically onto our other hard drive before it got stolen, but it would have been asleep so I don't know if it does it when it's asleep. We'll see.

Right now I just feel really . . . I don't know the emotion. Violated. Shocked. Scared. I can't believe they just came into our house in the middle of the day while we were there! I'm just so glad it wasn't someone wanting to take or hurt the kids. The policeman said that kids have been taken in the middle of the day while their parents are napping like that. So scary. So, yeah, I'm not loving our hose here in the city right now. I miss Heber.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Operation Jack & Bad Math

I feel I must do my duty as a runner :) and try to encourage all of you to run as well. Actually, I just wanted to get the word out about Operation Jack. I just learned about this yesterday and this guy, Sam, has an amazing goal! He has a little boy who was diagnosed with autism at age 3, and now Sam is planning to do 60 marathons in one year to raise money for Train 4 Autism. If you want to be part of this, you can sign up for one of the 60 races he's doing. He's doing them all over the country throughout the year so there's a good chance that there will be one close to you, and you don't even have to do a marathon. If there's a 5k associated with the race, you can do that or whatever distance you want. He's doing two of his marathons within half an hour from here (Provo and Park City) so it's got me thinking about doing one myself.

Just think about it.

Today I was supposed to do a 4 mile temp run at 9:45 minute-mile pace. I didn't trust google maps after our last encounter so I thought I'd just go for 40 minutes. But then, I got thinking that if I was really doing 9:45 minute-miles then I wouldn't need to go for 40 minutes. (Uh, I'd just need to go for 39 minutes.) Of course, I wasn't thinking and didn't do that math in my head while I was running so I ended up cutting off a lot more than one minute. I turned around after only 15 minutes, and got home after 31:57. I was hoping I had done 4 miles, but there's no way I could have done 4 in that time. What am I, crazy? It was just a really hard run. I was really pushing it so I had my fingers crossed that I really was going fast and not just hurting.

Anyway, the kids and I rode our bikes to the library later, and we took the same route I did my run on so I could measure it, and it turns out I only did 3.2 miles. I'm such a dork sometimes. I just don't think about things clearly when I'm running. 

Still, I guess that is almost as fast as I was supposed to be going, I just needed to stick it out for one more mile. Or, actually .8 miles. Next run I will map out before I go.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Let the Speed Work Begin!

I got an email today saying that Against Malaria has just reached 1 MILLION nets! Here's what the email said:
Thank you for helping us reach 1 million nets which, once they are all delivered, will mean 2 million (mainly) children protected. We hope to achieve the next million nets even faster.

Your nets

Over 97% of donations have already been allocated to specific distributions, many with pictures and video. You can see where the nets you funded have gone/are going by visiting your page. If they haven't been allocated yet, they will be soon!
Reading this email made me realized that I never really announced on here how many nets we ended up getting! Sorry about that. We raised enough money for 93 nets! Not quite my goal, but it's still an impressive number right!? Thank you to all of you who helped me out with this! Make sure you go check out where your nets are going! If you didn't get a chance to donate before the Ironman, you can still do it now. I'll still let ya. :) Just go to to donate. Maybe more people will want to donate now that they know I've actually done it. I don't know.

On with this post.....

This morning when my alarm went off at 5:30, I was surprised that Pete wasn't in bed. I found him in the living room with his computer. He said he couldn't sleep. He had been taking Excedrin for his sore jaw after getting cavities in his wisdom teeth filled yesterday. Well, it turns out that Excedrin is great for Ironman, but not so good for bedtime pain. Each pill has almost as much caffeine as a Red Bull! Yikes! So, he ended up with only 2 hours of sleep last night. Poor thing. He's sleeping now and I'm afraid I won't be able to get him up for dinner. . .

Anyway, I told my very pro-sleep husband that I was tired and didn't want to go running. He advised me to go back to bed, just like I knew he would. He's always there to remind me to listen to my body. If it says I need sleep, then I need sleep.

I went back to bed, but didn't get too much sleep because I felt guilty about it. Later in the morning, I decided I could go do my run at the gym and just fork out the money to put all 3 kids in the daycare. I was planning on doing a track workout anyway.

When I dropped the kids off, I had exactly an hour and 2 minutes until the daycare closed so I hurried up to the track to get started.

I ran around for about 10 minutes to get warmed up (it was supposed to be 20, but I was in a hurry), then I started in on my 4 x 800s.

800 m is half a mile (right??) so I just did 4.5 laps on my 1/9 mile track. It was fun to only have to count up to 4!

According to how fast I did my (fake) 10k this weekend, my goal time for the 800s was going to be 4:23 each. (See this article) I did the first one in 4:20, and that didn't even feel hard enough. I ran easy for 2:00 between sets, then I did the next one in 4:10! I had knocked 10 seconds off! Two more minutes of recovery and I was ready to go again. This time I did it in exactly 4:00! (That's 8-minute mile pace folks!!) 

I thought it would be cool to knock another 10 seconds off for my last set, but I was happy with finishing it at 3:57. (Sub 8-minute mile pace baby!) I ended my workout with a 10-minute easy cool-down run. Then I stretched in the climbing cave while the kids played around in there.

Going into my first real speed workout, I thought it would be hard and miserable, but it ended up being really fun! It reminded me of the speed work I've done with swimming, and that's encouraging because I've gotten much faster at swimming! I also like doing speed work on the track because I know how far I've gone and how far I have to go, plus I get to pass people left and right! It just makes me feel fast. 

Monday, July 6, 2009

Real Quick

This is one of those, "I was going to wake up early today to do my ride, but I just couldn't get out of bed" posts. It's ok, though because I got to do it in the evening after Pete got back from running. I did a nice flat 31.4 miles with my average speed ending up being 16.4 mph. 

I thought this was pretty good since it started out at around 13. I wanted to ride the 10k route that I did on Saturday to measure the distance so I did that first. Pete was saying that he didn't trust google maps so it was making me doubt my distance. Unfortunately, he was right to doubt google because it was off. Dang it! 

I started right on the line I turned around at, then rode back to the house. I was trying to be as accurate as possible by even riding my bike on the sidewalk where I ran. This made me feel really self-conscious and I worried about getting a flat the whole time. That's why I was going so slow. Once I was almost home, though, I got sick of the sidewalk and just got onto the road. I figured it's not that far off the course anyway. 

When I got to the house it said 2.9 miles! What? That means I only did 5.8 miles instead of 6.2 so I wasn't really faster than last year at all. That means I was killing myself to do 10 minute miles! I can't help but be a little depressed about that with all the running I've been doing! Of course, I have to remind myself that I haven't really done any speed work. I've just gotten really good at running really slow for a really, really long time. 

I feel like I have gotten faster on the bike, though. Almost the whole way home from my ride I was able to keep at around 19-20 mph and it was cool to be able to push that average speed up like that.

I rode past a couple out on their bikes and it looked like the guy was teaching his wife how to shift. This made me think about when Pete took me out to a bike path in St. George and I tried out his road bike for the first time. I was so nervous on that thing! That was probably 5 years ago. I soon learned to really love the road bike only to trade it for Pete's tri bike this year. Now I was all nervous again, and I thought I'd want to trade back as SOON as Ironman was over, but I don't. I love my tri bike! Even when we were out on our cruisers the other night, after about half an hour, I started wanting my areo bars. :) Funny how things can change like that.

Maybe it's time to find something to get me out of my comfort zone again. Or maybe I should just work on getting faster at running. . . .

Sunday, July 5, 2009

What Have I Been Up To?

It's really weird to be done with my Ironman. 

I am kind of having a hard time not having anything to be training for. At least not anything that takes like 12-14 hours a week. I am training for an olympic distance tri in Burley, ID in about 3 weeks, but I haven't taken it too seriously yet. The swim will be down-stream and the bike and run are both really flat. Pete and I did this tri 2 years ago, and it was so much fun! The only draw-back was that Elle was still nursing, and we had left her with my dad 3 hours away. I was pretty uncomfortable by the end! This year we're leaving the kids with my dad again, but I won't have the same problem. I'm excited to see how fast I can do it too!

I haven't been training for an Ironman anymore, but here's what I've been doing:

Last Saturday:

I was itching to go running by Friday, and I even woke up without an alarm at 5:30 all excited to go. (yeah, it was a little weird) I got up, then decided that I wasn't actually feeling very well. I thought I might have been getting sick or something so I decided to go back to bed and take one more recovery day.

Well, I wasn't getting sick. I was fine. I was kind of sad that I didn't go because I didn't have another chance for the rest of the day.

Saturday we went up to Heber to hang out with my family because my sister had just gotten home from 6-months teaching English in China! It is so good to have her home!!

Her she is with our niece, Aria.

While we were up there, Pete and I headed up to Dutch Hollow to do a little trail running. 

We did a 1.8 mile loop, and it took us about 20 minutes. (Looking back, we should have warmed up a little on flat ground first.) Then I went again by myself and did it in 15 minutes. It was really fun. It's so much nicer running up in the mountains on trails where you feel more adventurous because you've got to be careful not to step anywhere funny and twist your ankle. Also, there are the animal sounds you hear as you pass the bushes, and you have to hope it's not going to be a moose or anything. The trees are great for running in the summer too. It was much cooler up there than it would have been out on the street somewhere.


I spent the morning doing yard work. I weeded the garden and found about 50 snails that have been eating up my vegetables. I had the kids come get them, and they entertained themselves with the little "snail school" they started for quite a while. I got the lawn all mowed and they were all just happy to be playing with their snails. It was cute, they were telling them stories about snails and everything.

This is towards the beginning of the snail school, when there were only about 10 students.

We put the snails in a box with a plastic lid so they wouldn't get out and get back in the garden, and we put them in  a nice shady spot when we headed to the library. We ended up being gone for a couple hours. Sadly, by the time we got back, the sun had moved, putting the snails in full sunlight. Yep, they were all dead.

Luckily the kids weren't too heartbroken about it. It's sad, but I guess it helped take care of my snail problem. I'm sure I'll be able to find them more sometime. I couldn't believe how many there were!

I think I went running on Tuesday? Yeah, that's what I did. . . Maybe for an hour? How can I be expected to remember back that far anyway?


I woke up early and went for my favorite bike ride through the city, and up past the zoo. It was the perfect weather, and the perfect amount of traffic. It was so much fun coming back down, like usual. I got going 40 mph down that crazy hill where you can't see the bottom when you first go over. Even the car in front of me was pushing on its breaks, which, of course, made me more nervous, but we made it!

It took me an hour and a half, and I almost felt like it wasn't a real bike ride because it was so short, but it was fun.


I ran hills! Since I decided to enjoy sleeping in instead of going running before Pete went to work, I had to figure out how to do my workout with the kids. I took them to the Lindsey Gardens park which is up in the Avenues (in the middle of a big hill).

Here's the hill above the playground that I ran up. It looks like nothing in this picture.

When we first got there, we found a path that went into the trees so we went on a little "adventure" through there before we went to the playground. It was really fun, and Ethan was already begging to go "exploring" again by the time we left. We'll have to do it again sometime.

Here are Elle and Mindy in the "forest," Ethan had gone ahead scouting out the trails.

The playground at this park is awesome! It has one of those old merry-go-rounds that they've taken out of most of the parks these days. Probably because they're so dangerous. That's also probably why it was my favorite thing at the park when I was a kid.

You can't really tell in this picture, but the merry-go-round is actully moving, Elle's holding on for dear life, Ethan's crying because he just got hurt, and Mindy's trying to stop it so he can get off. (What a good mother I am that I just stand by and take pictures at moments like these.) Like I said, THE FUNNEST THING IN THE PLAYGROUND!

I got the kids playing and started running around the playground to warm up. Then I would run up the grassy hill above the playground which would shoot my heart-rate up into the 170s. Then I would run down and run around the playground a few more times until my heart-rate was back under 150, giving Elle a push in her swing every couple of laps. Then I would hit the hills again. 

Elle took these pictures for me. I think she did a pretty good job! This is the hill below the playground. I traded off doing both.

I kept doing this for half an hour. It was a pretty short workout, but it was hard in the heat and with the hills. Also, the kids were getting tired of waiting for me so I decided that was long enough.


I kind of took Friday off, though I did take the kids to Target then to the swimming pool with my sister. That was a lot of fun. Then in the evening Pete and I hooked the bike trailers up to our cruisers (He just got a new city bike, it's sweet!) and rode to the gateway where the kids played in the fountain. Then we went to dinner before riding around for another half an hour. Elle was asleep by the time we got home. It was a really fun evening. We're planning on doing this more often. Who needs a car when you can do this? Plus, with a bike, you don't have to worry about parking. It's awesome.


The training plan that I'm going to start following is for a half marathon, and to figure out how fast to do all your workouts, you have to know how fast your 5k or 10k is. Since I haven't done just a run race for a while, I wanted to figure out how fast I could do a 10k so I mapped out my own little course, and did that.

For the first half, I kept my heart-rate at around 165 because I know I can keep it that high for at least a couple hours. I got the the turn-around spot in 29 minutes so I made it my goal to get back by 58:00 and I started pushing a little harder. My heart-rate was in the low 170s for most of the way back except when I got to the last block when I really sprinted, and it shot up to almost 180. It was so fun running that fast, though! I wish I could do that all the time! How would that be? Of course, my "fast" is probably like 8 minute miles or something.

I finished in 58:43 so I didn't quite make my goal, but at least it was under 59, and I'm pretty sure that's faster than the last 10k I did which was right around 1 hour. Of course, I don't know how accurate my little course was either. I just figured it out with google maps. I should go ride it and see what my bike computer says before I get too excited.

While I was running, songs kept coming on that I would think, "This seems fitting for the 4th of July!" I also felt like being out running was the perfect thing to be doing on this holiday. There were a lot more people out then usual, and I almost felt like I was running a real 10k with some of them even cheering me on.

We did fireworks with some friends in the evening and it was really fun, though it didn't help to get the kids back on a good sleep schedule. 

I'm so grateful to be living in this country, and for the freedom and safety we enjoy here. I'm grateful for our forefathers who sacrificed much so that we could have these freedoms. It is such a beautiful land with so much diversity and I just love it. God bless the USA!