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My Favorite Fitness YouTube Channels

My Favorite Fitness YouTube Channels

It’s a new year! The gyms are currently flocked with fresh batches of people starting new fitness journeys. Fitness classes, treadmills and weight machines with be packed with people for the next month. If you’re like me, that does not at all sound appetizing. I […]

Couch to 5k Group Run

Couch to 5k Group Run

My first YouTube video! I plan on vlogging my marathon training, which starts next week. Today’s video follows my local Couch to 5k program’s last group run.

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – Finish Line Feels

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – Finish Line Feels

I rounded a corner and there was my coach Sonja. I was the last of her athletes to finish and she was there waiting for me. I ran up to her gave her a big hug and headed off towards the finish line and the familiar voice of Mike Reilly.

I came up on my friends and family, one of whom ran alongside the spectator area of the finish line pushing me in. The crowd was loud and lights were bright, a stark contrast the the lonely trail I was just on. Running down the red carpet and through the finish line was surreal. I crossed the line and heard Mike Reilly call out, “Lindsey you are an Ironman!”


And then it was done! Just like that I had finished my first Ironman. Just like that the pain of the last 16 hours was over. I was handed my medal, my shirt, a finisher’s hat and a water. I stumbled to my friends and family, many of whom had spent all day following me around and thanked them along with my coach Sonja. We took a few pictures, collected my bike (I guess they didn’t burn it, lol) and my gear and headed back to the hotel.

I finished my run in 6:18:02 with a 14:25 pace. That pace definitely holds much to be desired, but I was happy to finish. Happy to cross that line at 16:08:48 and finally hear Mike Reilly call me an Ironman.

During the last 5 miles of the run, I swore to myself that I’d be sticking to halves from then on. A half does not even remotely compare to the pain and effort of a full. After the finish, as I was handed my medal, I thought, “Okay maybe one day I’ll do this again.” As I sit here typing up this race report, I know I will ABSOLUTELY do it again. It’s funny how quickly pain fades and how so many of us are crippled by the fear of it. I won’t be tackling another full for a few years, because let’s face it, 16 hours of forward motion is ROUGH. I want to gain some speed and hopefully upgrade my ride, but I will definitely be back again to hear Mike Reilly call out my name.

There is nothing quite like the high of getting to that finish line. It’s not just the 16 hours that it took to get there that day, but the months of training it took to even toe the line. The early hours in the pool, the late night trainer rides. Giving up vacations and drinking with friends to get my training in. The aches and pains of training, injuries, endless picky bars and gels, non-stop hunger and midday naps. Driving my friends and family insane with non-stop Ironman talk. Spending every waking free minute pouring over training data, schedules, race reports, nutrition and triathlon books, articles and forums. It was all worth it. I’ll never forget my name being called out. If you are debating signing up for one, know that yes, it will hurt. Yes, it is a very big commitment, but that it is so so SO worth it. You are stronger than you think you are and once you get to that finish line, you will be forever changed. Forever an Ironman.

Big thanks to my family and friends for following me around all day in Santa Rosa and listening to months on end of Ironman talk!
Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – The Run

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – The Run

I waddled through a maze of lines, hobbling in my cycling shoes and half blind in my right eye. My right eye was so messed up from the sunscreen that had gotten in it, that it was like looking through milk. I couldn’t see anything […]

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – The Bike

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – The Bike

I busted out of the tent and ran (aka hobbled because really who can run in cycling shoes?) to my bike. I checked my nutrition one last time, stuffed my phone in my back pocket and grabbed my bike. As I grabbed my bike, the […]

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – The Swim

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – The Swim

The bus pulled up into the transition parking lot and out I went. The fact that I had done the half a few months earlier at this same location, with basically the same check-in and race morning protocols really helped my nerves. This was all familiar, I had done it before.

 
I walked quickly over to transition and started getting ready. As I headed down my line news came over the speaker, the water was 76.1, WETSUIT LEGAL! The day was already off to a great start. I loaded my bike up with my hydration, checked my nutrition, stashed my phone in my bento box (for emergencies) and started stuffing myself into my wetsuit.

  

Half dressed I made my way down to the lake and looked for my teammates. There at the beginning of the boat ramp was my teammate Briana and her husband. She and I were going to start in the 1:20 wave, so we stayed together. I was so happy to have her with me. It’s so nice to have someone to talk to, zip you up and keep your mind off of the race. It’s very easy to get swept up in the excitement and let nerves take over. We chatted as the minutes passed and before I knew it the canon had sounded.


We herded ourselves to the water’s edge right by Mike Reilly. I looked at him, hoping I’d see his face again at the end of the day and walked slowly into the water. I had a panic attack during the half here in May and I was determined to have a good swim. The swim is my best event and the most fun for me. I was going to make the most of it.

I glided into the water and set off. No panic, no struggle, just smooth sailing. As I headed out, steam started to come off the water. It was hard to see through it, but also very cool to see. I tried to soak it in. This was my first and I was going to soak up every second of it. My swim went well, I made the decision in the first 100 yards to not use my legs at all. I dragged them through the water or really glided, your wetsuit keeps you in position, using your legs just makes you go faster, but I have a decent pull. I used my legs only at the red turn buoy or when someone decided they wanted to grab on for a ride.

Before I knew it I was done with my first lap, I hopped out of the water, turned the cone and went right back in for a second loop. My first loop took me 39 minutes, the second about 43, all because I decided to swim a bit extra. My sighting was worse during the second loop and I encountered some men that decided swimming like the hulk was a great idea. It’s almost always men too, must be all that testosterone. Hulk SMASH the water! I was punched a few times, had my goggles kicked and grabbed, but it wasn’t bad. I’ve gotten used to it over the past few seasons and learned how to fight for my place in the water. A little soccer elbow here, nice kick there and ta-da clear water.

Towards the end of the swim, I started feeling hunger pains. I thought of my transition bag and the rice krispy treat I had stashed in it just an hour earlier. Mentally patting myself on the back for my good thinking. The last 500 yards were a bit toasty. I started to feel the warmth of the water. I wasn’t uncomfortably warm, but had I had to do another loop, I would have gotten pretty hot.

Soon the last red buoy was in sight. I turned the corner and headed to the exit. Once at the exit, I picked myself up and made my way up the boat ramp. I finished the swim in 1:22:26 at a 1:51/100yd pace with about 250 extra yards. Had I not swam a little extra, I would have actually come in under my predicted swim time. I was pleased with my performance and looking forward to the rest of the race.

“Smile,” I reminded myself. I have a bad habit of not smiling for cameras. This was my first Ironman, I wanted some nice pictures! I headed up the ramp and saw my family. Quick hugs to my mom and a pet to little Momo the teacup yorkie and I was off up the ramp. The ramp to T1 is long and steep. It’s about a 1/4 mile from the water’s edge to the tent and all up hill. I took my time and jogged up to transition.

Happiest I was all race, aside from the finish line. I loved the swim!

As I headed to the tent I called out my number and a volunteer grabbed my bag, handed it to me and ushered me into the women’s tent. I’m not one for nudity, even in a locker room, but I did a full change (except my bra, nobody wants to fight a wet bra on race day) for each leg of the race. Everyone is so pre-occupied with their own stuff no one notices. If you are worried about it, don’t.

I changed into my super awesome Coeur zip bib shorts (AMAZING, I forgot chamois cream and had ZERO issues), tossed my cycling jersey on and downed an applesauce and my rice krispy treat. When I got to my socks, I realized that I had forgotten an extra water bottle to wash the sand off my feet. I rubbed off as much as I could, but that would come back to haunt me later on in the day. Don’t forget this! I popped on another quick layer of sunscreen, got my helmet and glasses on and made my way out of the tent.

Continued on The Bike 

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – Pre-Race & Check-in

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report – Pre-Race & Check-in

I arrived in Santa Rosa on Thursday, got through Athlete check-in, which if you’ve never done it before can be an experience, long lines with a hurry up and wait kinda atmosphere. This was my third Ironman branded event and I could not believe how […]

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report

Ironman Santa Rosa 2017 Race Report

Saturday July 29, 2017, I successfully completed my first full Ironman. The following is my Ironman Santa Rosa race report. Each leg of the race has been given it’s own post to avoid a wall of text. Thank you for following me on my journey. […]

Tri For Fun #1 Race Report

Tri For Fun #1 Race Report

Back in February, I signed up for a 3 part sprint tri race series for the summer with my fiance. A race a month in June, July & August. The biggest determining factor for me registering for these races was, the fact that all three medals are supposed to connect into a giant medal. I’ve always wanted a connecting medal, lol.

 

Saturday was the first of these races. I did this same race last year and didn’t exactly do so well. I placed last in my age group and had a hard time on the “hills.” The bike course is 16 miles and has about 500′ of climbing, all rollers. Definitely not a large amount of climbing, but I hadn’t done any hill work previously, so I had a hard time. This year I was prepared.

My fiance and I arrived 45 minutes prior to race start, got checked in, marked and set up quickly. I forgot how pain free it is to set up for small, non-Ironman branded races. No long drawn out processes and lines, just in and out! Not to mention the space in transition! I was able to lay out a big beach towel!

 

The race is at Rancho Seco Recreational Area, an old nuclear power plant, that has been decommissioned and now serves as a solar farm. It’s super cool to ride right by the silos. The lake is warm 72-76 all summer long. Warm enough to not wear a wetsuit, but I opted to wear mine because it makes me faster and I need all of the wetsuit practice that I can get for Ironman Santa Rosa. I don’t need any panic attack repeats come July.

 

My fiance was in the first wave, so I saw him off. I started in the fourth. All of the women started after the men, which I like. I don’t so much mind having older men start behind me, but the young guys like to clobber you. I got hit hard by the 29 and under men in Arizona. I’d much rather let them go first.

 

The swim went well. Absolutely no panic attacks or uneasy feelings. It was smooth sailing. TBF used orange buoys for sighting and a hundred or so yards behind those were white buoys for turns. The white buoys were VERY hard for me to see. The sun was bright, even with my tinted Roka F2 goggles and it made the white buoys nearly impossible for me to see. After my first turn, I couldn’t see the second buoys to turn and just followed the swimmers around me hoping I was going in the right direction. Luckily I was! I passed a bunch of people in the third and second wave and got out of the water in 16:25 with a pace of 1:48/100yd. Not quite as fast as I had hoped, but so much better than my previous performance. The last year I came out of the water in 19:10.

T1 was quick, no transition run from hell and I was off on the bike. I started out conservatively and worked up the nerve to get my butt into the aero bars. I LOVED it! I really wish I had used my bars during my half next month. I will definitely be using them for the full. I used the bars for about 75% of the bike course, only coming up to climb or maneuver turns. I picked up some speed and maintained a decent pace throughout the bike. My goal was to catch up to my fiance, which I did in the last mile of the bike. He had been teasing me, telling me that he was going to beat my cycling time, so I was determined to run him down, lol. We’re just a little competitive. Overall I kept a pace of 17.4 mph over the 16 miles of rollers, with a time of 54:53. Last year I finished in 1:06:03 with a pace of 14.53 mph.

 

I got through T2 in about 52 seconds and was on the run. I knew I was running, but my legs felt dead. My watch said 9:15 pace, not bad for me, but it felt like I was running through mud. The first half mile felt like a struggle to get my legs to fire, but I managed. The run course is a rocky dirt trail with a few hills. After warming up I felt pretty good, I pushed my way through the looped course, walked to sip a cup of water twice, taking note of all of the women heading back in. I was only passed by a few women on the bike and was surprised at the number of the women heading back in before me on the run. Was I really that slow on the swim? I started to worry that I was further behind in my age group than I thought I was, I had forgotten that the Duathlon started at the same time. Many of the women I saw were duathletes.

I made my way up the final hill and turned onto the grassy finish. Is it just me, or do you feel like you’re running through mud in the grass? I always feel so much slower running through grass (without cleats). I finished my run in 29:27 with a 9:42 pace. Which for me isn’t too bad. My 5k PR is 28:06, so a minute and a half off isn’t so bad, especially since I think I could have pushed harder. My goal for the summer will be to PR on the 5k at one of these sprints, which I think is possible. Last year my 5k time for this sprint was 36:15, so big improvement.

 

My overall time was 1:44:24, a 23 minute PR over my time of 2:07:27 from last year. It’s nice to see actual gains in my fitness. I know I feel fitter, but it’s nice to see it in action. Thank you Rising Tide Coaching! I placed second in my age group. I was 19 minutes slower than first place, but only beat second by 30 seconds. Glad I didn’t slow down, haha.

  

The next installment of this race series is July 15th. I hope to make more speed improvements by then. I could have gone a bit faster on the bike and run. I definitely had quite a bit left in the tank after I finished. I’m so used to racing conservatively for these longer races, it’s hard to make myself go all out. Well that and racing conservatively sure does feel a lot less painful! I need to get used to being uncomfortable in these shorter races. For now, I’m happy with the results, I have a few things to work on and some times to beat! Overall a great race. TBF puts on a nice show, if you’re thinking about doing a race with them, I highly recommend them. Everything is very well organized and all athletes are made to feel welcome.

GEAR LIST

Summer Gardening

Summer Gardening

If you know me, or recently read my 15 Things About Me post, you’ll know that I love to dig in the dirt. I like green things and happily live my life with a small amount of dirt under my fingernails.   I plant a garden […]