Saturday, October 31, 2009
I was only mildly disappointed to miss out on the gluten free desserts they had available; I had to stick to my plan of no dessert until after the race next week! I'm kind of amazed how it hasn't been too difficult for the most part. Fruit can sure do the trick most of the time! We're flying tomorrow and Melanie at the Gluten Free Specialty Market suggested a St Dalfour Gourmet on the Go salmon meal. She's never steered me wrong yet, so I bought one for each travel day. Can't wait to try it tomorrow! Melanie also donated a fantastic basket of my favorite gluten free foods for the Cooking Spree last night. It was raffled off and raised a bunch more money for the NFCA. I'm so lucky to live near her shop. You can read my reviews of some of the basket items and her shop here.
I had a short 5 mile run today, including 2 tempo miles. I think the taper is going well, as the run felt great. Looking at next week's plan, my workouts are all less than an hour long. I'm going to be rested and ready! I'm thankful for the extra hour tonight due to the clocks changing. I really needed it to pack. I have never brought so much luggage with me on a vacation! Tomorrow we'll be in Florida and the countdown to race day will continue!
Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Over the last week, I have really been all over the board with emotions about November 7. Everything comes in waves. Excited, nervous, scared, worried, excited, calm. I'm packing my training log. I can look at it and know that I've done the training for this. I can't let myself freak out about what could happen on race day. I just need to be prepared for whatever could happen.
Fundraising for the NFCA has really given me something else to focus on other than the race. It's been really great to feel like my race has a purpose - more than just a "I've always wanted to do an Ironman." I'm not just doing this for myself anymore. It's added to my To Do list, but in a good way. I feel like I'm making a difference. I've got lots of people cheering for me, and I know I'll be thinking of them all on race day, wondering if anyone is really tracking me. If you haven't donated yet, now is the time. You can donate here: http://januscharitychallenge.kintera.org/fl09/kendra Donations raised before my race count towards the Janus Charity Challenge total. The higher my total, the more likely the NFCA will get extra money from Janus for my fundraising efforts. Top fundraisers get additional funds for their nonprofit donated by Janus.
My To Do list until I get to Florida.
- Buy Gu Chomps w/ caffeine
- Buy Glutino pretzels
- Buy gluten free chicken broth
- Pack wetsuit, goggles, swimsuit, tri suit, bike clothes, run clothes, run gear, food for race day, plus clothes and food for every other day, etc
- Go to National Foundation for Celiac Awareness' Gluten Free Cooking Spree
- Resist temptation to eat any dessert at the Gluten Free Cooking Spree (dessert free since September 20! Just 9 more days til I can have a sweet!)
- Turn in checks with offline donations to the NFCA.
- Raise more money for the NFCA
- Pack some more
- Write my nutrition plan - make sure I've got everything I need
- Write my race day plan. Maybe a race week plan too.
- Take the doggie to the boarders :( Beg them to post pics of her on their blog regularly.
- CHANGE CLOCKS!
- Thank Artemis profusely for taking us to the airport
Partly Cloudy; High of 77°, Low of 61°, 10% chance of precipitation
30% Chance of showers. High 72F and low 68F. Winds NE at 9 mph.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Swim: 3.4 miles; 130 minutes
Bike: 162.2 miles; 629 minutes
Run: 13 miles; 150 minutes
Total: 909 minutes (15 hours, 9 minutes)
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Yesterday's swim went great. When I went to put it in my training log I realized it was the first time in a looong time that I did my whole swim workout. The water temp in the pool is so much nicer this time of year because they heat it to 82. Perfect for me! I swam 4000 yards which is actually my longest swim workout this year (not counting two 4000 meter swim races).
Today's brick went pretty well. The bike seemed pretty easy. My toes got a little numb after 2 hours or so though. I either managed to ignore it or it went away because I didn't notice it near the end of my ride. My worry on the bike is that I'll get really uncomfortable. I'm sure it'll happen at some point. Just hoping it happens near the very end of the ride instead of mid-day. The run wasn't too bad, although it was pretty hot. I think I managed to do miles 4-5 faster than 1-3, but I'm just guessing as I haven't checked my stats yet.
I'm starting to freak out a little about the race. I think I need to stop reading race reports that I find online. It's a loooooooong race and basically anything can happen, and has happened to someone. Perhaps I should be reassured by the reports that mention repeated vomiting but end with a sub-17 hour finish nonetheless. I've been advised to make sure I have anti-diarrhea medicine, anti-gas medicine, etc, etc, etc. I should probably add crazy pills to that mix, because every so often I think I must be crazy to do this. I had that thought during the first mile of my run off the bike today. It's the first time I've thought that in a long time actually. Maybe it came about now because the race is in TWO WEEKS! So I can't just tell myself "I've got plenty of time to train" anymore. The training is DONE. It's time to taper!
There are a million other things I'd like to blog about right now, but I am super tired and need to get my stuff together for tomorrow's ride. It's my last ride on my race bike until my bike arrives in Florida a few days before the race. I'm dropping off my bike and a gear bag (to be packed still! not sure what to put in it other than bike shoes, helmet, saddle bag) at the bike shop tomorrow after I finish my ride. Sierra is also hoping to go to the city pool's Doggy Splash Day tomorrow. I've got to figure out if I can actually squeeze everything into two suitcases or if I need to mail stuff to myself too. I've been advised that Panama City Beach is not gluten-free-friendly, so I'm not taking any chances and I'm packing a bunch of food. Good thing my husband is a light packer.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
I did my 8 mile run today by running to work. Dave and the dog joined me for the warmup 2 miles which conveniently ended at a dog park where they played for a bit before turning around and running home. I, on the other hand, sped up and ran 4 tempo miles. Felt a little hard near the end. I blame the 2 hills. Sure got my heart rate going! The last 2 miles were the cooldown. I think every time I've run to work has been a Thursday. I always run past the farmers market. I was tempted by the persimmons but I didn't feel like running another mile with a bag of fruit. I love running to work! It's so much fun to get my commute and workout done simultaneously. Same as when I bike commute, but the running version still has the novel factor. I timed the run exactly right - 90 minutes almost on the dot. Gave me time to stretch and still get to work on time. I absolutely love having a locker and shower at work. I left my clothes there yesterday, so I just carried my Camelbak with a few essentials this morning.
Lately I've been looking forward to post-Ironman life. I don't think I'm burnt out. I just want to sleep in for a change! Getting out of bed is the hardest part of my workouts it seems. Except for swimming. Getting in the pool is the hardest part. Ugh. tomorrow's swim... in the morning with the fog? or in the afternoon with the masters swimmers? One way or another it's got to get done!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Thank you to each of you who have generously made a tax-deductible donation to the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness through my Janus Charity Challenge fundraising website. Please help me spread the word to your friends, family, networks, and celiacs you know. Even small donations can make a difference! I've only got about 2 weeks to raise donations so the time is now!If you're trying to decide on the perfect amount to donate, consider $17 since the Ironman time limit is 17 hours and it is exactly 17 days away today! 17 is also the percent of celiac patients who have an immediate family member who also has celiac. Here are some other numbers to consider if you're not in a 17 kind of mood right now:
- 9.00 - hours it'll take the first pro woman to finish the entire race and months I'll be gluten free on race day
- 10.00 - years it takes for the average Celiac to be correctly diagnosed
- 112.00 - miles I'll bike after a 2.4 mile swim
- 26.20 - miles I'll run after that bike ride
- 95.00 - percent of Americans with Celiac disease who are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with other conditions
- 98.60 - millions of dollars that the movie "Iron Man" opened with (no relation to Ironman)
- 370.00 - days I will have been waiting for race day
- 70.30 - miles I traveled in my longest triathlon so far
- 140.60 - miles I'll travel by swimming, biking, and running (and walking) on November 7
- 50.00 - years it's taken for the rate of celiac disease to quadruple (yes, the actual disease, not just diagnosis)
And a few more numbers to add to my training log:
Totals from last week (Mon-Sun):
Swim: 1/2 mile; 20 minutes
Bike: 73.2 miles; 286.5 minutes
Run: 27 miles; 339.5 minutes
Weights: 25 minutes
Total: 671 minutes (11 hours, 11 minutes)
Yesterday's rest day was much appreciated! I spent my usual workout time shopping at Fleet Feet for a different pair of goggles, and picked up a few more Carb Boom gels. Once I got home I practiced changing tired - both the front and the back tires. Glad to know I can do it! I've got a 30 mile ride to do before work now. I just joined twitter too, so you can see more frequent updates there. I'm going to try to convince my husband to tweet on race day about my progress too!
Monday, October 19, 2009
Physically the run was challenging but not too difficult at any particular time. The first 10 miles I felt super strong and was really feeling good about myself. I didn't really have a low point in the run, but the second 10 miles did feel harder. My legs were getting tired near the end, but I managed to run 2 of my fastest miles in the last 3 miles! At some point in the last 5 miles I realized the playlist on my ipod had started over. Guess the playlist is shorter than 4 hours! I decided to use my ipod on this last long run because I thought it would help me run faster which in turn would help me be more prepared for Florida. I'm glad I used it. Madonna's "Like a Prayer" seems to always keep my feet moving.
I got a bit tired of the Carb Boom watermelon gels I was using during this run, but I think I just needed a different flavor. I love the watermelon flavor but I just needed a temporary change. Today I used apple cinnamon gels when I was cycling, and it tasted much better. I'll definitely bring a variety to Florida with me so I can choose from multiple flavors. After the long run yesterday I sat in an ice bath for about 15 or 20 minutes. It was so incredibly cold that I almost cried. But I knew my legs would appreciate it to help reduce inflammation.
Today's workout was a 40 mile bike ride. Since it was rainy I decided to hook my bike up to the stationary trainer so that I could ride indoors instead. I didn't want to use my new tires on the trainer since it can wear them out, so it forced me to change the tire. I'm going to practice changing tires a few more times before the race. I think I'm getting pretty good at it! The bicycling today was tough. It's boring to ride indoors, so I watched some episodes of Felicity on dvd. My legs were definitely feeling tired, but I finished the ride. Then I swam! Now it's time for a lot of stretching. My legs are getting more sore as the day progresses. I bet I'm going to be pretty sore tomorrow - good thing it's a rest day!
Saturday, October 17, 2009
I really need to start going to bed earlier for the next few weeks so that I will be used to waking up super early and more importantly, I'll feel well rested on race day. All summer I was starting my workouts by 8am or 9am, and today I slept in until 8am! I only had to ride 30 miles, so I didn't feel the need to set my alarm. :)
Balancing training with the rest of my life can be tricky sometimes. My husband suggested I use my 30 miles to ride over to Davis where we could go to the farmers' market together. Unfortunately I didn't get started early enough for that to happen, but it did work out to have him meet me there and have lunch together at the gluten free restaurant, Farmer's Kitchen Cafe. We split their bio-regional salad and a curry dish. I feel a little silly getting a salad at a gluten free restaurant, since salad is easy to make gluten free, but this salad is so delicious and packed with lots of awesome fruits and vegetables (all local and organic!)! Strawberries, tomatoes, cantaloupe, oranges, sweet peppers, purple cabbage, breakfast radishes, baby broccoli, steamed green beans, onions, summer squash, baby carrots, pickled beets, and free range hard-boiled eggs! I should really take a photo of it next time. We bought a loaf of their bread too. I'm thinking it's going to sound like the perfect post-long run food tomorrow. Maybe also that frozen Glutino pizza I bought last night. If I can't indulge in bread and pizza after a 20 mile run, when can I?
I feel fortunate to live in such a bicycle friendly area. How many interstate highways have bicycle paths right along side them? I rode next to I-80 for the first time, as I'd never ridden to Davis until today. It sure is loud with all the speeding cars thisclose to me (there is a divider and a fence, so it's not scary just loud), but for some reason I felt like I was riding faster than usual, too. My ride included some intervals too so the workout was interesting and the new route was interesting too. Thanks go to my husband for checking google maps for me when I got lost twice and had to call him at home for help!
Before my husband drove over to meet me for lunch, I spent some time at my favorite bike shop. I've been having problems with my toes going numb and hopefully the adjustments we made to the shoes today will alleviate that. It's too close to the race to try new shoes since I don't have any more long rides to do. I also bought a new piece of equipment that will hold a gel flask on my top tube so that I can have one less thing in my jersey pockets during the race. Since I can't eat the food that will be offered during the race, I am carrying my own. Fuel for 112 miles takes up a lot of space, so the more that I can have be on my bike instead of my person, the better!
Friday, October 16, 2009
I was expecting to get to November without worrying about fog! I like to do my workouts from home (it just seems silly to drive somewhere to run or ride my bike), but if it's foggy tomorrow I'll probably get my cycling done on the bike path instead of the roads. Safety first!
My evening included a massage to loosen up my muscles for Sunday's 20 mile run, and a trip to Gluten Free Specialty. The owner, Melanie, is helping me with my fundraising efforts. I hadn't been in there for a few weeks since I swore off desserts until the race (fruit doesn't count!). The cinnamon rolls she sells from Azna Gluten Free are just amazing and impossible to resist. I guess my mental training this month has paid off as I managed to leave without buying the cinnamon rolls. When I get back from Florida though, they will be the first item on my shopping list!
Thursday, October 15, 2009
350 days ago I registered for Ironman Florida 2009. It'll be my first Ironman triathlon (swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, run 26.2 miles).
260 days ago my doctor told me to go gluten free, based on some blood work that indicated a gluten allergy. I wasn't sure how training for an endurance event could be reconciled with avoiding wheat, rye, and barley. With a lot of research and testing various gluten free sports bars, gels, and drinks, I think I've figured it out.
8 days ago I was officially diagnosed with celiac disease, based on genetic test results coupled with another blood test.
23 days from now I'll be racing Ironman Florida gluten free! I've just been partnered with NFCA a few days, but I can tell the next 23 days are going to be action packed as I work hard to raise funds with NFCA and to complete my last few weeks of training. This weekend's plans include a 20 mile run and spending some time writing out my detailed race day nutrition plan (what and when I'm going to eat). Nutrition is basically the fourth sport in triathlon, and I had to start from scratch figuring out what gluten free options worked for me. I've got a pretty good idea of my plan, but putting it on paper will mean I won't have to think about it anymore! So much to do in the next 23 days!
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
The storm we had was pretty impressive. I rode my bike part way to work this morning, and the bike path was just full of debris. I was glad I rode my hybrid with the thick tires instead of my road bike! The county did a great job cleaning up though - by the time I rode home from work the bike path looked brand new! I didn't see anyone else on the normally busy path today.
We had a breakfast party today at work for people who used alternative transportation to get to work. Usually I just don't eat anything at gatherings that involve food since I can never tell what is gluten free. My coworkers were thoughtful enough to slice the bananas with a clean knife so that I didn't have to worry about bagel crumbs. Yay for gluten-free awareness! Bananas are my favorite post-workout fruit, so it was a great snack after my run and bike commute!
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
I've decided to raise money for the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness. Celiac disease is a genetic autoimmune disease, with which I was recently diagnosed. Celiac disease causes my body to attack itself whenever I consume gluten, which is found in wheat, rye, and barley. When a person with Celiac disease ingests gluten, her immune system responds by damaging the finger-like villi of the small intestine. When the villi become damaged, the body is unable to absorb nutrients into the bloodstream, which can lead to malnourishment. Left untreated, people with Celiac disease can develop further complications such as other autoimmune diseases, osteoporosis, thyroid disease, and cancer. The only treatment for Celiac disease is following a gluten free diet.
About 1 in 133 people have Celiac disease but 95% of those people don't know it yet! Diagnosis takes an average of 11 years. The symptoms vary a lot and some people have no symptoms! My main symptom was an unexplained occasional rash on my elbows for about a year, but I'd had years of unexplained iron-deficiency anemia and elevated liver enzymes. My primary care physician screens all her new patients to see if they have a gluten allergy and that blood test combined with a biopsy of my rash told me back in February that I needed to go gluten free. A recent genetic screen confirmed I have the Celiac genes. I've been gluten free since February.
Post-diagnosis, I've learned how ubiquitous gluten is. It can show up in soy sauce, chicken broth, salad dressing. It's not always easy to spot on an ingredient list. It can be in "natural flavoring" or "modified food starch" or even "caramel color"! It can even be in vitamins or medications. Even foods that don't contain gluten can be problematic due to cross contamination issues. The smallest crumb leftover on a cutting board can contaminate an otherwise gluten free salad, for example. A prepackaged snack that was manufactured on shared equipment with wheat could cause a reaction. You can imagine how difficult eating safely at a restaurant can be! After a few weeks on a gluten free diet, I felt like I had more energy. Within a few months, my asthma also improved and I have normal blood test results for the first time that I can remember.
The most difficult thing about Celiac disease, for me at least, is that gluten is everywhere and there is very little awareness of Celiac disease. My goal is to raise awareness of Celiac disease because I believe awareness is the first step towards increased diagnoses and better quality of life for those diagnosed. It's really been amazing to me to learn about all the health problems that can be related to a Celiac ingesting gluten (for example, infertility, osteoporosis, and autism have all been linked) and yet people don't know about the disease!! You, or someone you know, could be suffering from Celiac's disease without knowing it because of the lack of awareness.
As a participant in the Janus Charity Challenge for Ironman Florida, I'm raising money for the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness. One challenge for me during the actual Ironman race includes having to carry my own food. The bananas provided on the course should be safe, as long as the volunteers who touch them haven't been touching pretzels and used a clean knife and cutting board to slice the bananas instead of the same one that cut the gluten-filled sports bars. On second thought, maybe I'll ask for a whole banana!
Please help me raise funds for the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness. They're educating healthcare professionals to increase the rate of diagnosis and promote appropriate care. They're educating food service professionals to provide safe gluten free options for institutions and individuals. It's really important for celiacs to have an organization like the NFCA working hard to achieve these important goals. I'm hoping that by raising money for the NFCA through my Ironman race, I can help NFCA continue to increase awareness of this disease.
Follow This Link to visit my fundraising web page and help me in my efforts to support the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness!
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Totals from last week (Mon-Sun):
Swim: 0 miles (0 yds); 0 minutes
Bike: 26 miles; 132 minutes
Run: 0 miles; 0 minutes
Weights: 0 min
Abs: 1 min
Total: 133 minutes (2 hours, 13 minutes)
I'm pretty sure that's a record for the year. None of the cycling was what I'd call a workout at all either. Mostly just to get my legs moving a little and to avoid paying for parking at work on Friday. I did one hour on the trainer tonight, which is double what I did yesterday. I think the key right now is not trying to workout outside. Go for a walk outside - breathing goes downhill. Ride for 30 minutes outside yesterday? Come home and suck on the nebulizer for awhile. Sure haven't been feeling like an ironman lately. Three weeks ago I rode 100 miles followed by a 2 mile run. Friday I couldn't decide if I could ride my bike 2.5 miles to work or if 1 mile would be the max I could handle. I went with the 2.5 each way and it worked out okay, minus the fall at the end. I stopped to help a woman with her bike and stood there too long evaluating the situation without unclipping my other shoe, so by the time I went to get off my bike to help her, I'd forgotten I was still clipped in. The time before this that I fell off my bike I ended up with stitches in my knee. This time I have a big scrape in the same area, but luckily it's not very deep. I'm still finding new bruises from the fall but thankfully nothing serious, and it was on my Trek so I'm not too worried about the bent handlebars right now. Just glad I got this year's fall out of the way and now I can move on.
Yesterday was Kona, so Florida is the next Ironman race. It's weird to see Florida at the top of the page on ironman.com. I watched a bit of the Kona event online. It was fun to watch Chrissie Wellington and Craig Alexander win. How can you not like a woman who is kicking serious butt and smiling the whole time? She's awesome. I tend to cheer for Crowie and Macca because they were both so nice when I met them at the St Croix 70.3 race in 2007. It's also heartbreaking to watch or track the people who don't get to finish. Just reminding me that the 17 hour cut off is not the only time cut off out there. I was really hoping Rudy Garcia-Tolson would make it. And I'm always cheering for Sister Madonna too.
It's weird having a week off from workouts. It's something I've been looking forward to every so often - but I didn't want or expect it until November 8. It's actually not as great as I'd imagined. Sleeping past 6am is a treat, and it's nice to enjoy a weekend morning at the farmers market. But sitting around on my butt for days on end is really not as fun as I'd imagined.
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Last week was a recovery week and this week is a different kind of recovery week. But here's last week's totals and the totals for September. Mostly to make me feel better about having 0 minutes of exercise so far this week:
Swim: 0.85 miles (1500 yds); 35 minutes
Bike: 95.5 miles; 388 minutes
Run: 10 miles; 122 minutes
Weights: 45 min
Abs: 10 min
Total: 600 minutes (10 hours)
Totals for September:
Swim: 8.49 miles (1500 yds); 299.5 minutes
Bike: 441.77 miles; 1738.5 minutes
Run: 71.46 miles; 887.5 minutes
Weights: 183 min
Abs: 42 min
Total: 3150.5 minutes (52 hours, 30.5 minutes)
Friday, October 2, 2009
At Fleet Feet I bought some more Carb Boom - vanilla orange in a big jug. The woman started to ask if I needed any help with nutrition, while she was putting things away, but then she looked up and recognized me and said "oh you know what you need" and realized I'm the reason they are out of Watermelon Carb Boom. I did end up chatting with ultramarathoner Justin, who just did IM Wisconsin, a little about protein though. He remembered I'm on a gluten free diet (I guess I really am a regular, or just high maintenance enough to be remembered) and suggested Bonk Breakers, which seemed okay when I looked at the label (well the source of "malt" wasn't listed, but the company already wrote back to my email and said it's rice malt). But when I took another look I saw it has "oats" and I'm avoiding oats per my doctor too right now. Oh and Justin had a good (?) idea for salt intake - mustard packets! I may consider it.
I also ended up buying the AquaSphere Seal goggles which is actually what I'd walked in there looking for. My googling told me they'd be good goggles. (try typing that 5 times fast.) I'll try them out on Sunday. Hopefully I won't feel like I'm snorkeling. This was the first time I ever tried on a pair of goggles dry and had them stick to my face, like how a good fitting goggle is supposed to. So I have high hopes. I also bought a few sample sizes of Body Glide, which I plan to put in the special needs bag or maybe just my transition bag, so I won't need a bunch of full size containers.
I finally signed up with Tri Bike Transport this week and paid the balance for the condo and reserved a rental car. I even gave myself a flat tire to force myself to practice changing one. But I haven't done the changing yet.
Time to finish preparing for tomorrow's brick and get to bed so hopefully my throat will stop hurting and I'll feel healthy again when I wake up. I'm thankful that tomorrow's high is only supposed to be 75, though I'm hoping it's not too chilly in the morning when I get started! Yes, I recognize that I'm picky. You would be too after two years on a tropical island with lows in the mid-70s and highs in the 80s every single day of the year. I guess to really prepare for IMFL I should perhaps take a cold shower and then go for the bike ride and run. Nothing like being wet to create an uncomfortable wind chill.