Tuesday, January 27, 2009

My Kestrel pimped out with 3T

Yes it's little- a 47 frame! I've gone down a size from my last Airfoil which was a huge 50 frame! This smaller frame gives me more scope for changing my position, and I can use a "normal" size stem, rather than the tiny one I had previously.
Kestrel have made a few changes to this Airfoil edition- it has an aero seat post, it's lighter, stiffer and has been built up around the bottom bracket and around the area where the seat post goes in.(please excuse my non-technical lingo:))
Love my color-coded Zipp 404 training wheels:) When Kristian and I are doing TTs together I really notice the benefit of the race wheels when I catch him up!
I'm running Shimano Dura Ace- smooth as silk.

I chose the 3T Brezza. I find them very comfortable, which is my top priority. When I'm not in the TT position the hand grips are quite substantial- which I like, and the flat section of the bar is narrow enough for me to get my hands around. They have plenty of scope for adjustment, and the arm rests sit nice and low- so that I get a good drop.
Kristian uses the Ventus- 3T's more aggressive bar.
Unfortunately the white gripper tape is already looking a bit grey!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Kristian- The Ladies Man!

Kristian at a BBQ with Amanda Balding, Belinda Granger and Hilary Biscay:)
We didn't want him to miss out, so he came along!

I admit I'm over the independence. The novelty has worn off. I need him to kick me up the butt when I'm feeling tired and give me that pep talk when I need it, especially since I'm in the thick of it for IM NZ- just 6 weeks to go now!

I forgive you Kristian! you can come home now:)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Yesterday I cracked!

I can laugh now, but at the time it was horrible.
I was negative negative negative:)
And I hated myself for giving up.

I was doing session #2 of the day, the brick! Yes this is the same session I wrote about last week being "ugly". I did the first set and was heading out to do my 2nd set of 400m run repeats...I started running, got 50ms and stopped. Big internal battle going on in my head:). I came back to the start, gave myself a thorough talking to, and set off again...Got to pretty much the same 50m mark, and called it a day.

Training plans are not set in stone. Coaches don't always get it 100% right. Sometimes a session is just too much, or rather, not at the right time, and sometimes we have to try things to know.

I didn't just give this session one go and give up. I've tried it over a number of weeks, and it's been a mission every time. It's been "modified" every week. This week I cracked! It's hard to describe the feeling to someone if they haven't felt it. It's mental as much as physical. I just couldn't make myself push any more. There was no energy, and no amount of sugar or caffeine could turn it around. Actually there probably is an amount of caffeine that could turn it around- but that's called "digging a big hole and jumping in feet first" or quite simply "overtraining". You don't want to go there.

This is where COMMUNICATION with your coach is KEY.
I know I live with my coach, so its easier for me, but he's away at the moment. So I sent him an email and told him how I felt. I know myself well enough to know the difference between being soft and when it's just too much, so he trusts my feedback. So moving forward that session will be adjusted or put on a different day.

Today was backed off and I had a lie in. The goal now is to get back to normal levels of fatigue, so that I can get back into my training routine. I'll still train today, but not the amount that I would normally do, and without so much intensity.

Common Mistakes;

1. Not backing off.- The worst thing to do is keep battling on. You will dig that hole deeper and deeper! You must listen to your body. There is a time when you need to push and a time when you shouldn't. If you keep overtraining you'll end up burnt out or sick and having to take a huge chuck of time off- or leaving the sport altogether! It happens a lot! I don't mean to scare you, but don't let it happen to you.

2. Totally stopping.- Active recovery is key. Keep moving, but back off.

3. Not getting enough sleep. The more rest you get the quicker you will return to "normal".

4. Not eating enough. You need to feed the engine. Your appetite will most likely be off the Richter scale. You'll crave junk. Try to be kind to yourself and eat high nutrient foods, but do get the calories in.

I'll be back!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The husband who doesn't answer back!

When Amanda and Luke were taking their gear out of the garage they found the "other" Kristian, and relocated him into the lounge. He's very low maintenance:) I always get my own way, doesn't argue and is always smiling.

Kristian's in San Diego for an ironguides camp and certification course, and Amanda and Luke have now found their own pad for the summer in Sunshine Beach- noice. So I'm all on my lonesome.

I'm getting into my own routine and it's really quite nice to only worry about me, to choose what I feel like eating, to lie diagonally across the bed, to only pick up my own mess...I should stop there!:) I do miss him, but you've gotta look at the positives. I think we'd be described as co-dependent, especially since Kristian is my coach and often my only training partner. It's not very often that I get to fend for myself, and I'm enjoying it. I'm sure Kristian is enjoying some time apart too.

There's a few things I can't do on my own and I find that quite frustrating. I need 2 people to pump my tires- one to pump and one to hold the nossle onto the valve- it's dodgy. And putting sunscreen on my back is a bit of pain in the butt.

I also might need to hire a hubby to tune in our TV. I've survived the last 3 months without it, but now the Tour Down Under and the Australian Open are about to start- it's now an emergency.


Saturday, January 17, 2009

We all suffer...

Even Lance...and it's a good hurt.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Today was UGLY!

I promised to share with you the good, the bad and the ugly.

Today was a perfect example of UGLY!
I woke tired, and took longer than usual to become coherent!

The first session of the day was something new for me, an ocean swim squad at Noosa Main Beach. We started at 5.30am (it gets light here at 4:58am!!), and did a series of short intervals out and around a couple of cans and in again. Doesn't sound too bad?? Throw in the biggest surf they've seen all summer, and its one heck of a grueling, ball breaker session! Also throw in 30 teenage surf clubbies and its a recipe for humble pie!!

I was starting with the faster group (well that's where my friends were...) and coming out at the back each time.- Less because of my swimming, but because I'm a hopeless body surfer! But I also found all the running through knee deep water absolutely exhausting!

I got totally nailed by one wave and ended up a long way down the beach:) I lost all my confidence and was just totally shattered. So called it a day early- after an hour- the session went for 90 punishing mins...

Luke was in his element, and Belinda, Amanda and Kristian all loved it. I watched in admiration. Amanda was worried that I'd not come back next week...I don't give up that easily:) I want to learn to conquer surf swimming, so that I can turn up to any race in any conditions and be prepared. If it doesn't kill me it'll make me one tough cookie.

So home for brekky and I was a total wreck. I have to laugh now, but I was smashed. I had an hour nap, but I reckon I could have slept all day:) I made myself get out of bed and eventually plucked up the courage to embark on session 2 of the day- a bike/run x3 brick!

I felt tired and my splits were way slower than I'm usually able to punch out. I made myself complete it and just tried to detach my emotions from the session. I thought "just do it", remembering how good it feels to finish a session that you "think" you are too tired to do- Without giving in to the emotions of tiredness- if that makes any sense.

Once all done, I felt a thousand times better. Much more energized. It's bonkers I know.

But you know, days like these are when you learn and grow, mentally and physically. If you stick with it and give it your best shot, no matter if is less than on other days- you can still get benefit from the day. You make forward progress. You are nearer your goal, and you reinforced the habit that you NEVER GIVE UP!

Tomorrow is a whole new day.


Friday, January 9, 2009

Pro Athlete House Guests...

We have 2 Pro athlete friends staying with us at the moment...Amanda Balding and Luke McKenzie. I think they're so used to staying with people that they fit right it, make themselves at home and are no trouble at all. Puurrfect! Plus Amanda is a SUPER STAR in the kitchen. You should see what she whips up for lunch- she's putting me to shame. But I love that she's taken over that department:) I'm really enjoying their company and having them to train with. They're happy, fun, positive people.

Although, I blame them for making me stray off my NYs resolutions in my first week! My going to bed and reading every night has been replaced with Californication, absolutely hilarious. I'd never seen or heard of it before this week- now I'm hooked!:) It's just so wrong! It makes me wonder if I've misheard or whether they really did just say that??

Well laughing is very good for the soul and I'm sure I can catch up on my book reading! The resolution to enjoy life more and be happy now, is definitely on track.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Ironman New Zealand

I've decided to race IM New Zealand on March 7th in Taupo.
When I'm out there freezing my wotsits off I might regret this decision:)
But right now, I think its a good one.

Lucky me, I get Kristian to come as my support crew. He won't be racing. So it's all about me! Neither of us have done this race before, so its something different. I like the look of the course, so we shall see...right now it's all about getting fit again, and I have plenty of training partners about at the moment to help me- more about that soon...

Saturday, January 3, 2009

2009, what's on?

What shall I do in 2009?

I'm in the process of putting together my races. It's a tricky process involving timing, emotional ties to certain races, travel logistics and expenses, potential earnings etc.

I've locked in;

Geelong 70.3 8th Feb - I was sick when I raced here last year. I loved the course, and it suits me having lots of laps. I look forward to doing this one healthy! A great kick start to the year, with no pressure. This is unfortunately Australia'a only 70.3 event. This distance has never been my strength, but I plan on changing that this year! If I can get faster over this distance it will benefit my Ironman speed.

Quelle-Challenge Roth 12th July - I really want to hit this race fit this year. I also want to race it in good conditions and experience the real Roth. This is a good opportunity to go sub 9, and tick off that goal. Always a strong field here so I know I will be pushed to my limits to get on the podium.

Hawaii IM 10th October- This is my key race of the year. To many in the industry, nothing else we do in the year matters- just how we perform on this one day on the Big Island. I'm learning to love this event; it's addictive to try and race hard in these conditions and under this kind of pressure.
I want to improve on my 11th spot in 2008 and crack the top 10. To be up on the stage in Hawaii would just be amazing, amazing, amazing!

IM Western Australia 5th December - I want to win this one back. I love this race. It always brings out the best in me. I really want the feeling of winning here again and I want to get back the course record. Its a very special race for me.

There's potential for an IM in the first quarter of the year. But not decided which one yet.
I'd also like to race more 70.3s and shorter races. I've yet to explore the options in Queensland, but would like to get overseas to race too.
So we shall see what fits.

The race I really want to do is IM Canada. The emotional choice! I love the course, it gets great crowds and I have a fantastic home stay there. But the timing is terrible- the end of August. I'd just love to be able to race the Canada course well since it's such a toughy and so honest. Watching Belinda win last year inspired me to train to be able to ride like her. But it looks like it might have to wait for another year...

Thursday, January 1, 2009


"Inspiration starts when you are motivated by dissatisfaction with the way things are"~ Dan Kennedy.

2008 was not the year I intended. I experienced many disappointments. But valuable lessons were learnt, and now 2009 is beckoning with the opportunity of a fresh new start!

Which leads me to setting new goals for 2009.
So I have set myself micro goals.
Why micro? Because micro leads to macro.

"Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day."
~ Jim Rohn

1. Time Management
"Everything counts, it either hurts or it helps, but it all counts"~ Brain Tracy
You are either moving towards your goal or away from it, with every choice and every action you take.
We used to have this message on on our fridge in marker pen, and everyone assumed it related to food. It's everything in life.
Whether we whittle away our precious time on "wastebook", aimlessly surf the internet or make a list of "to do items" and get to work on the most important one.
We all have choices.
Get going, keep moving, take action, DO IT NOW!
I'm going to get into the habit of "doing it now"

2. Write on this blog at least twice a week.
The good, the bad and the ugly! I'm going to let you get to know me, "warts and all".
The more I write the better I'll get, and the better I get, the more I'll write! Until I become...UNSTOPPABLE!

3. Roll with my Trigger Point tools every morning after my first training session.
Yes I should be more like Greg and Laura Bennett and roll BEFORE my first training session...but thats not going to happen!:) I have to be realistic with my goals if I want to last the first month!
This relates back to goal #1 time management...

4. Enjoy my life.
Sometimes I take things too seriously. I need to chill out more. I have definitely got better at this but it goes into the "needs more work" category.
In the past, a bad race result meant that I sacrificed more, tried to become more disciplined, was hard on myself and thought that it would relate to better results. I was so desperate for success. I am now more able to ride the storms of disappointment, and equally to deal with the foreign place called "success".

I'm not talking balance, because I'm not sure you can be balanced if you want to be the best you can be at something- anything.
Lance Armstrong was not balanced, The Tour de France was all consuming, and that's what he had to do to win.

I am living my life "by design", I wouldn't change much if I could. If I won a million dollars I wouldn't quit my job. So this year I will take a little more time to "smell the roses".

5. Read 2 books per month.
I missed this goal by 4 books in 2008, so I'm setting it as a goal again!
I will go to bed earlier and read for 30 mins every night. I love reading, it's my escape. I don't watch TV.
Oh look, this relates back to goal #1 again!

6. Learn to use imovie.
So that I can post video clips all by myself!

"We created our circumstances by our past choices. We have both the ability and responsibility to make better choices beginning today."
I wish I knew where I got this from...

I wish you all every success for 2009.

And I URGE you to...

DO IT NOW!!!!!!