Sunday, April 30, 2006

I got kidnapped and force-fed!!

I was supposed to wake up at 8am this morning but failing to hear that alarm, was supposed to wake up at 8:15 with the second alarm. Nope. When I finally heard a faint repetitive beeping drone, I figured out too late that I had heard neither alarm and my fear from last night realised itself and I had slept in. The clock read 9:14am.

I was supposed to meet runners from Coolrunning and from MEETinMTL at 9am. Now you understand my dilemma ...

I bolted from my bed, got dressed, drank a glass of water, jumped into my car, found parking and got to the monument at the bottom of Mont-Royal at 9:30. No one to be found, of course! So I started running up the path and eventually ran into some of the other runners.

Met a new person, Ms. T, a phys ed teacher, really nice, and I think she will end up whupping my ass everytime she comes out with us. Sorry, A. for not making it - happy you had a good run without us anyway ... and thanks RG and Df for turning out and giving me your smiles :-)

So I ran about 12k in all taking a downtown detour with Ms. T. What a kick-start to the cardiovascular system in the morning!

Next on the agenda was lunch with TurtleBoy. What I thought would be a simple get-together in the early afternoon for lunch in Chinatown (wonton soup, salt & pepper pork chops, garlic snow pea leaves) ended up being a 6-hour kidnapping where I was force fed way too much food.

Am I the only one who does this, or do you do this too? Carbo-load for exercise we are *thinking* of doing ... 'cause no one ain't seen me on my road bike this afternoon.

I was supposed to ride for 2 hours and even bought spare tires and other bike stuff this afternoon. I figured I'd tempted fate too often going out with no emergency kit and I was due for something to happen. Now I'm safe. TB picked up something along the way too ... check out this cool cycling jersey ...

It's Curious George!

Check out what's on the sleeves ...

This last pic is just for you, DR ... :-)

Nope, I never got in any cycling 'cause after the shopping, we got hungry again. Forced to eat again ... how horrible!!

We didn't end up going to Krispy Kreme like we had hoped but we did make it to Rockaberry's. Yum, yum ... key lime pie and warm apple crumble with ice cream. Got lots in me to cycle tomorrow 'cause tonight all I'm going to do is take a hot bath and relax in front of Grey's Anatomy (sorry Mr. SB) then zzzzzzz ....

Excuse me, I'm allowed to pass in the centre

I shouldn't have gone swimming today but I felt I had to train. I should have just taken the day off. I got into the community pool nearby and felt even more so the heaviness of my legs. A little while back, I wrote about how some people expend a lot more energy trying not to sink than in going forward. Today I was one of those people.

I tried to find that pivot point needed in the body to keep the legs nice and "buoyant" but it just never felt right. And for some unknown reason, my left shoulder bugged me. Moving forward and finding any sort of rhythm felt impossible.

To top it off, today seemed to be "hang out or swim slow" day. Had someone posted a notice, 'cause I didn't see it.

I got in trouble for banging into someone today accidentally. That happens sometimes, even when all the swimmers are going more or less the same pace. When I had gotten to the end of the pool, there was no one there, so I did a flip turn and shot back out on the other side of the lane. This is where I bumped my arm into his leg. I didn't realise that I could shoot out in a glide faster than he could back stroke. No harm intended!!

He lectured me on how, on days like today, if there are more than 2 or 3 people in the pool, we shouldn't be passing, and also on how everyone is supposed to wait his turn at the ends of the pool. (Does that mean I should wait after the people who socialize 5 min. or more inbetween every lap?)

I told him that pool etiquette dictates that we are allowed to pass in the centre of the lane, at least that's what I've read on the notice boards at every pool. I told him that I don't tell slower swimmers to get out of the way or out of the pool so why should I be told to stay out of their way?

To top things off, his son wanted to come visit him while he was socializing at the end of the lane, so he cut right in front of me as I approached quickly. Lucky no one got hurt.

So that's my gripe. I would have gone to another pool at lunch time to swim lanes, adults only, not family time, but I was too busy wolfing down a yummy tonkinese soup.

Well, bed-time for this droopy-eyed girl who still isn't getting enough sleep.

Friday, April 28, 2006

What to do ... what to do ...

So Metalboy woke me up bright and early this morning to go cycling. I asked him how cold it was outside. He said, "0" (zero). I said, "That's pretty cold." But he convinced me anyway, though I felt like calling him back at 8am after breakfast to change my mind. Good thing my trainer, Dirk, was online. I told him of my cycling plans and how frigid it was outside but how it was supposed to warm up and might be 4-5C by the time we started. He said that made no difference. He recommended wearing four layers, gloves, ear and head covers, and of course, plastic bags over my feet. Good trick, though my feet were sweating, and subsequently cold, by the end. But it did the trick and it helped me make it through.

Thank you Metalboy ... 60k! Cycled almost 2.5 hours (average speed 24.4, a little slower than last week, but heck, I did big hills last night!)

Confession: I didn't go to sleep when I said I would. Felt guilty. Wanted to feel more productive, so I worked on sorting out receipts. Yeah fun stuff ... and to think I chose that over sleep. By the time I needed to sleep, I was overtired, and thus had insomnia. So my lack of sleep is entirely my fault ....

My choices tonight are:
a) swim
b) swing dance
c) swim then go swing dancing
d) watch t.v. and go to sleep early

But as I'm writing this, I realise that yes, part of training is recuperation, and I'm horrible at that. So I will try to be a good girl and choose d). I hope you're reading this Dirk and Metalboy!!

Flash ... there is no early swimming tomorrow morning close by ... agh! Makes me want to go to the pool right now ... No, no, no! S-L-E-E-P !!!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Brrrrrr ...

Today was just a gorgeous day ... just slightly frigid though, can't believe I still have the heating on lest I freeze my buns inside too.

I had to include this gorgeous photo of a cactus bloom, just one day only, then she disappears until next year when she will bloom again. Thank you Mars (aka the Shepherd) who's out in Nevada now. We all miss you!!

It was DA HOOD today, my running group's nickname for the Thurs. hill run that takes us from Villa Maria metro over Queen Mary and then somehow to Parc Ave. where Camilien Houde starts and then climbs steeply (average grade of 9-10% over 1.7 km). Chops and I ran 1:22 about and I think we did about 14k or so. Maybe I'll be able to give the correct stats soon - I've queried Mars who invented this course.

So good run but very tiring. The lack of sleep last night didn't help (computer crash). My legs are still a little heavy, especially since running is no longer my main sport, it's just one of three of them ... argh (what have I gotten myself into?!) I made a nice Chinese supper when I got home a little after 8pm and by the time I had finished eating, decided it wasn't worth rushing to the pool to swim half an hour on a full belly. I figure I'll get wet enough when I take my nice hot bath after writing this blog.

I sat on the couch to watch ER and then .... zzzzzz .... and now here I am. Time for beddy-bye my friends. Metalboy is going to give me an early wake-up time tomorrow. He's going to torture me with another long bike ride.

Sweet dreams everyone!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Back to light and springy!

Today was just one of those days ... was so busy, I didn't even get a chance to eat anything until almost 5pm, which is not good for the metabolism. When I woke up this morning, I wasn't hungry so I just had tea and when I did get hungry, I was too much in a rush to take the necessary 15 min. to gobble something down.

But I sure made up for it tonight ... a friend took me to Kaizen Treehouse. Yum, yum ... I would go back for sure!! Anyone up for it?

This was the BEST miso soup I've ever had!

I tried something new - Lambas Buddha - absolutely scrumptious!

Oh yes, the training ... Went for a very short "tempo" run before heading out for my late supper. (I concentrated on quick turnover and pushed my speed a bit.) Only a quick 25 min. or so, maybe even less ... That's all the time I had! My legs finally felt better, back to "normal". The elephant legs I've been running with the past week are gone! Dirk, my IM trainer, told me that's normal with biking until the legs adjust. Let's hope those elephant legs never come back again!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

It's all about synchronization

Last night, my Coolrunning gang and I met up to celebrate Roly's birthday with cake and also TurtleBoy's fantastic Montreal Half Marathon finish. He thinks he did just "alright" ... we others thought he did GREAT!!

Silly Sally, Mercury, Mr. Lambchops ("Chops"), Roly, and TurtleBoy

You can't see Truxx because he's the one taking the pic and DragonFly had to leave early. Fun evening to be had by all ... cake, beer, and laughs. A friend of mine, GK, who once ran a marathon (that's a special club, you know!) joined us for the evening. TB and Merc had brought medals to show off. Gary hadn't brought his but pulled out something shiny and said, "Oh, look what I have ... a picture of the queen." We looked closer - he had pulled out a loonie. Alright, it was funny at the time - guess you had to be there. Thanks Df for giving me the following to read ... So nice that you're thinking of me, though it made me go to sleep late!

No down to business ... I swam and biked today.

Thought about running to the pool but figured it was wiser to grab a snack if I was going to survive this evening's workout without having eaten supper yet (late lunch). Made it to the pool finally, in my car, and got in a solid 23 minutes of front crawl. I concentrated hard on becoming "taller" or longer in the pool, stretching out as my hand entered the water.

I changed quickly into my cycling gear and hurried to my hour tri group spin class. Eric, my coach, made us do two sets of hills while standing - 5 min. hard + 5 min. harder = 10 min. gruesome, followed by a one minute sprint (120 rpm) on an easier setting, then one minute rest (90 rpm) My legs burnt. I cheated a wee little bit and made the start of my second hill just a little less steep, but the second part was much steeper. [Oh no ... Dirk, are you reading this?]

Then quick change and back into the pool until they closed. Only 15 min., but I worked not only on elongating, but also on synchronizing the turning of my torso with the entry of my hand into the water. I want to become a GREAT swimmer one day ...

Monday, April 24, 2006

Water, water everywhere!

Managed to squeeze in my training today between all the things I had to do, but it required some extra effort. Because of my lack of time, I decided to kill two birds with one stone. "Heck, I'll just run to the pool, and take the long way." And so I did. Then I thought, "Hmmm ... I've got 45 minutes, I wonder if that would be enough time to swim 2km." And so I did, but the life guard wasn't too happy with my stealing a few extra minutes to finish off my laps as he had already closed the pool. Then of course, I had to run back home, and this was actually the hardest part since I was starting to feel tired.

It's funny, my legs usually feel springier and lighter when I run, but I guess it's the lack of recent mileage in my legs or the accumulation of fatigue from my other sports, but today's run in the rain was HARD. My legs felt like lead and I felt really slow. I tried to quicken the pace and imagined running the marathon part of the Ironman praying that I wouldn't feel like this when the time comes ... ugh.

Alright, overall decent training day. Happy I was able to swim the 2km without stopping, except for the occassional equipment adjustment. (Does anyone ever get puffy bathing cap syndrome, where air gets caught at the top of the head and becomes annoying while swimming?) Ended up running 11km in all. I'm happy I didn't run yesterday's Half Marathon as I think I would have D-I-E-D ....

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Is a girl allowed to drool?

What a horrible rainy Sunday. Glad I wasn't registered in the Nike 21kmtl like some of my Coolrunning friends. I would have had to drag my kids out in the rain and ask that someone watch them had I decided to run.

Instead, after brunch, we watched Bend It Like Beckham. I had warned my kids who insisted on watching it while cuddling in bed that I might fall asleep and miss the whole thing, but alas, I ended up drooling too much to to that. The reason? Jonathan Rhys Meyers. I don't ever remember having a coach that looked like that. I don't even have friends that look like that ... drool ... drool ...

Alright, he's a bit young (rowwrr!) but can't a girl dream a little? My kids made fun of me and suggested I look him up on the internet, and so I did, just for them. Alright, if you happen to know a slightly older version of the man above, please send him my way, and make sure he's athletic.

Next ...

Went swimming in the afternoon. Managed 55 min. before they kicked me out of the pool. Worked on forward motion again and concentrated hard on efficiency. Have no clue how many laps I ended up doing, but I started off with 1000 m after a short warm-up and then followed with lots of faster sets that included flip turns ... so maybe close to 2km in all? I tell you, it's real hard to do breast stroke now which makes me feel like I'm gettting no where fast so I end up using it more just to warm-up.

So, Grey's Anatomy is on tonight and it's still raining outside ... I thought about running, but it's horribly cold and miserable outside ... Mr. SB it is. I'm taking a saddle break from Freida, my road bike.

Lazy days are good ...

Meant to get over an hour's swim yesterday, but the kids and I got ... sidetracked. Ended up with only a 25 min. swim at best, but it felt good. Another swimmer that I see regularly at the pool commented on how my technique is coming along.

I read up on how too many times, swimmers struggle to keep afloat, and that's where too much of their energy is going. I'm happy to say that I've gone past that staying afloat thing (I understand that point of balance needed in the body - we're like teeter-totters!) and now am just working on efficient forward thrust ... yay.

Did anyone understand that?

Friday, April 21, 2006

Toe cramps suck

I finally got some decent sleep, and boy do I feel better. The two nights previous to last night I got a grand total of 7.5 hrs sleep. Yay, whoop-di-doo ... don't know how I was even able to train.

Legs felt alright today though a little tight. I thought about running. I thought about swimming. I thought about doing both. I ended up doing neither. So no training today. Too many calls about work, etc. to take care of and I lost a few hours this morning as I elected to nap, still tired from the past days. I try to listen to my body ... sometimes. Anyway, I hadn't had a rest day since last Saturday.

Dirk called me and congratulated me on the public declaration of my needing to adapt more regular sleep habits. He's been saying it for months. I tell you folks, I'm working hard on it, but I remember even in junior high school, I pulled all nighters just to read a book, an entire book. What can I say ... I'm a little extremist :-)

Thursday's training:

Metalboy and I went cycling on the West Island and out on Ile Perrot. He's real cool and my other Ironman friend. I've seen him metamorphose from a 300 lb. once-in-a-whiler gym guy who couldn't run 50m to marathon runner to triathlete to Ironman, and all in a period of about four years. Wow, I'm so proud of him. It's wonderful to have his support, and if he can do it, so can I ... (gulp!)

The ride went pretty smoothly, with the exception of my horrible toe cramp that made us stop for a good 10 minutes or so. Anyone ever get that? Just out of the blue? Metalboy thought it was funny - he could see my second toe seizing up and bending unnaturally because of the muscle spasm. I didn't think it was funny at all but forgave him because he was able to work out the spasm by massaging the muscle just below my toe. Whew! Good thing too that Metalboy is a big guy (6'4") as I was able to draft behind him to catch my breath every once in a while and also get more speed.

So basically, a pretty good ride over all and even a few hills worked into the course. Frankly, I haven't cycled more than 30km, and this rarely, since my fanatic cycling days 13 years ago when I used to pull off 85km easily on my heavy mountain bike. So I guess I'm not doing too badly, and as Metalboy says, we're still early in the season.

He mentioned that we should plan to go cycling around the Jay Mountain area and do the hills there ... ugh ... I agreed.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Four words ...

Exhausted. Sleep. Post tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

It's like they've never seen a skimpily-clad woman before!

What a day! Bright, sunny and "hot"... well not summer hot, but hotter than this particular time of year is supposed to be.

I went for a 12k run on Van Horne and thereabouts. Figured running to the dentist to meet the kids (with their father) was killing two birds with one stone. One major glitch though when I got there ... they had shown up an hour too early and had already left. Great. [this is sarcasm here for those who don't recognize it from me through the internet]

So ... back up and down the Van Horne hills (yes, this is a hillier street than I remembered it to be). What a difficult run.

Not enough sleep last night + tight legs + sudden heat = OUF!!!

Good thing I actually had a singlet on instead of running just in shorts and sports bra as per my usual warm weather fashion. I've never understood that guy-hanging-out-the-car-window thing that men do ... ugh.

Dropped in on some friends on the way back to check out their rooftop terrace on which I've been invited several times to sunbathe nude. They have this great hammock and I will for sure take advantage of their offer to hang out with them this summer and just relax (dressed ... of course! I'm a prude!)

Ran back home from their house after the 15 min. "hello" break and hopped into my car, intent on not being too late for swim practice. I look desperately for parking and settle on a spot with a meter, feed $$ into it and dash off into the YMCA and downstairs to the lockers. I pass by the pool ... where are my teammates? Who are those people jumping up and down doing those silly-looking aerobic moves in water? Doh! I'm early!

I go across the street and happily get a much-needed coffee and yummy almond croissant. Wow, a newspaper ... when was the last time I had time to read a newspaper. But I end up chatting with my triathlon trainer instead who was getting something from the café at the same time. Cool ... he might let me join him for a 180k ride this summer. Wonderful, I'll have someone to draft behind all the way ... ;-) [this is not sarcasm but glee]

So swim practice consisted of:

- 300m front crawl warm-up
- 2 x 200m kick
- 4 x 200m pull-buoy fast
- 200m back crawl

And then I decided to stay a little longer and practise my front crawl. So got in another 500m.

Total swim = 2.2km or 88 laps.

Not bad for a day's training. Tomorrow, cycling ... if I manage to wake up. I really have to get to bed earlier! (Yes, Dirk.) But I still have a ton of things to do ... sigh ...

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Food is forever on my mind

Was lazy yesterday ... only ran about half an hour. My legs didn't feel as heavy as the day before though, but I hadn't cycled before. Went out afterwards and stuffed my face in Chinatown with a friend visiting from Ottawa. It was fun to introduce him to more authentic dishes such as Ma Po Tofu and watercress soup. We also had baby bok choy and crispy chicken. Just love those shrimp chips ... Mmmmmm ....

Today seemed to be "phone day" because it would not stop ringing and even the call waiting was kept busy. Some days, I feel like people have forgotten all about me, well not today! Actually, a quiet phone day would have allowed me more time out in today's magnificent weather, but alas, this busy girl only got in an hour cycling before physio, which went again like this - OUCH! When will I heal!?!?

I had wanted to go to spin class with my tri group tonight, but wussed out. "Saddle problems" so I thought maybe I'd give myself some time off. I went to the pool instead. Only got in 40 min. though because just as I was getting ready, I felt ravenous and had to wolf down a bowl of super sweet and crunchy corn puff cereal. Don't know what got into me to eat kids' cereal, but it was stronger than I was and made me late for the pool. No wonder I'm not trimming down ...

Sunday, April 16, 2006

My first brick

Ohhh, I'm falling behind with these posts!

Alright, I had something really nifty planned out for last Friday's post, but now it almost feels like a moot point. Hmm ... well, I cycled last Friday. Saddle hurt still, but a little less. Managed 35k. Took more time then I wanted but still felt a little wobbly and unsure on Freida, my trusty road bike. Almost got hit by some stupid motorist pulling out from the curb who failed to look at her blind spot. My near blood-curdling scream paralyzed her for a while as she did not move the car for a while even after I passed her ... (I looked back, afraid for everyone else). Then I went for a quick dip in the pool and got in a 40 min. swim. Tiring day, but good overall.

Saturday = read last post

Sunday's training: Cycled just a bit farther today - 40k. I was faster than Friday, that's for sure, but not as fast as I'd like to be! I suppose it will help once I'm not dealing with as much traffic and pedestrians. An open well-paved road would be nice too. Can't believe the condition of some of Montreal's roads! (Actually, I do believe it, been here for 19 years and things haven't changed.) Drafted behind some gentleman for a couple of minutes. Boy, it sure makes things easier, but I felt like I was lazy and cheating, so I passed him and continued on my merry way.

You know, that bike path up by the north shore is actually quite pretty. Did you know there are rapids there? I thought about what it might be like swimming in it if I happened to slip and fall into the water ... Brrrr!!!

Well, I would have loved to have gone swimming after the cycling, and my original plan was to do so, and even run to the pool, but I suppose riding in the rain and cycling farther than I originally planned nixed that idea. I had had enough water for the day and there wasn't much time left before the pool closed, but I thought at least I could still run.

Whose legs were those? I have read that it happens often after cycling, that feeling of not recognizing one's own legs. Now I understand it, and though I felt like my legs were made of lead, managed to pretty well do the same time for the distance. Ran for a half hour.

Yay, I've completed my first brick workout (cycling followed directly by running).

Cool moment of the day:
A young chap all geared up in his team cycling clothes riding his fancy schmancy road bike waved to me as we crossed paths in opposite directions. Did I look like a "real cyclist" all geared-up in my non-team cycling clothes with my less fancy schmancy but well-loved Freida? I hope so! COOL!

My fear:
That I will be found out and people will know that I am a fake runner, fake cyclist, and fake swimmer. I have all the nifty gear and I suppose I "look" the part but sometimes I wonder what the heck I'm doing!

It's 3:25am Sunday morning ..

And do you think I'm going to post something interesting?


But just wanted to fill you in and tell you that I've been having really squished days. These are the sort of days that I need 35 hours if I want to end up getting any decent sleep. No training Saturday, that's for sure, and for Friday, will let you know when I've had some zzzzz's.

Night, y'all ...


Thursday, April 13, 2006

Forgive me, for I have sinned ...

I ate McDonald's tonight. I was in a rush ... it's not something I do habitually! Honest!

What a day! Work and some appointments. And I'm still up working. Alright another confession ... I did some socializing today and dropped in on some friends that I hadn't seen for a while, hence the quick late supper.

And ... ahem ... I was supposed to cycle tonight too, but this horrible computer geek girl started trying to figure out her new account and webpage powers with her new part-time sales consultant position at a really cool company. Life as an actress as so unpredictable so this job is ideal! Am I going to tell you what it is?

Anyway, I did get in a good intense swim today ... besides drills, and warm-up and cool-down, I think I must have swam about 1.5km. Just swam and swam and swam until they took the lanes away ... about 65-70 min. in all. Cool.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Beware of muscle relaxants ...

I took this super duper muscle relaxant last night before heading to bed. These were left over from the prescription that I was given right after the accident. I thought it would help my sore back, and it did ... but it CONKED me out!! And unfortunately also kept me asleep way past my alarm ringing this morning. Ooops! Missed that appointment.

But as I said, my back is better :-)

I started gearing up to go cycling this afternoon but was interrupted by a call from my agent. "Quick, quick, they want to see you at this audition. How fast can you get there?" I got all prettied up and then off I went ... Wish me luck on landing that commercial!

So, no outdoor cycling today, though I plan at least 45 min. with Freida and my windtrainer after I finish writing this. After the audition, I went home and took off the make-up. What a waste again of a good make-up job - no Happy Hour, no supper with a friend, nada. Just a run to the pool, swim with my triathlon group, and then run back home.

Run = 40 min.
Swim = 1 hour, 70 laps, 1.75 km
(4 laps warm-up, 8 laps pull-buoy, 12 laps kickboard, 2 x 20 laps front crawl, 6 laps cool-down)

Alright, I just got off chatting with Dirk, my trainer. No cycling tonight. He told me to get some sleep since I'm still recuperating ... I can cycle in the morning. He's right ... early to bed, early to rise. And he made a very valid point - the Ironman doesn't start in the evening.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

To sleep or not to sleep ...

I actually got 8 hours sleep last night, which may not have been a good thing. I got up and felt all relaxed and then did this really tall "cat stretch" ... OUCH! I felt a knife jab me in the back. Bad move, bad move.

It was an absolutely gorgeous day today, nicest we've had all year and I could not take advantage of it - my back hurt way too much and I didn't want to risk further injury. Good thing I already had an appointment with my massotherapist booked.

Great massage! I think I exhausted him with all the knots in my back. We figure the right side of my back gave out due to compensating so much for the injured left side. I asked him if he could make me well enough to cycle later tonight and he laughed.

Then I went off to eat a scrumptious Indian meal with my good friend B. at one of my all-time fave restaurants - Curry House on Bishop St. Ate way too much ... I'm trying to carbo-load for the entire summer, ya know! My tummy hurt as we walked around afterwards. I almost regretted having eaten so much.

Then off to my tri team meeting to talk about summer races ... I'll let you know when I confirm my first triathlon entry. The meeting went too long to take advantage of the pool afterwards. Drat.

So day off today, no training.

I chatted tonight with one of my best friends:

Sainte: How are ya?

Bonnie: hurt myself this morning stretching, felt something pull

Sainte: not good

Bonnie: day off from training
Bonnie: had a massage and there were so many bloody knots in my back
Bonnie: my right side has been compensating for the left

Sainte: your body's way of telling you to take it easy for a while

Bonnie: yup, for today

Sainte: [rolls eyes]
Sainte: well, sorry about your pulled muscle ... hope it's feeling better soon

Bonnie: it's better, but there are still so many bloody knots
Bonnie: my massotherapist couldn't believe it!

Sainte: you should listen to your body when it talks to you in this fashion

I love my friend!

Monday, April 10, 2006

Step inside my mind ...

The weather was gorgeous today! Stepped outside midday to go for a run and ran into my long-time next door neighbour. He remarked on how good my body looks (fit). In the past, he's also remarked that I look like a young girl. He's not that much older than I am, 10 years max, so his comments always amuse me, though I appreciate them. He's amazed to see me training all the time.

So I went for a 45 min. 7.5km leisurely run around the neighbourhood and through Jarry Park. As I was running back home, I ran past some men doing some work on a house and they commented, "Elle est en santé. Regardez ses cuisses!" [translation: "She's fit. Look at those legs!"] Sort of typical construction worker kind of comments but heck, I was wearing running tights and had a running cap on, not particularly sexy. So their comments were appreciated too.

What a wonderful sunny day to receive morale-boosting compliments for the training-deprived wounded athletic ego!

I sent a letter to my friend and trainer, Dirk:

You'd kill me if I said I wanted to run a marathon at the end of May, wouldn't you ...
Um ... just checking ... how about a half? Gosh, that feels like cheating ...

Then I went off to a painful physio session. Good news is that albeit the pain, I am making progress, so I asked C. when I could start kickboxing again. He told me "not yet but soon", so that gave me hope. Then I asked him when I can start doing push-ups again and he gave me the same answer. Argh, but by the end of the session, he said I could try ... if I was careful ...

Later, I went off to my tri club pool practice. We got to do all sorts of drills with paddles and fins. I love the speed swimming with fins gives you. Wow, I wish I could wear an invisible pair at my Ironman. I learnt something new about technique today so will try to incorporate it. Great, more work ...

Then I went off to meet up with some Montreal Coolrunners for coffee. Roly is planning to do the Jay Mountain Marathon, a 30.5 mile ultra marathon through the woods that starts by climbing 4,000 feet over 9 miles to the summit of Jay Peak. He's never even done a full marathon before, except on the treadmill. Mercury, who is in his 50's, had trained to run a sub-3:00 Boston Marathon but his plans got altered by life-saving emergency surgery. He showed me his 6-inch scar. Question: do I fit in with these lunatics? FOR SURE!!!

In fact, I brought up my desire to run the Ottawa Marathon. Probably the stupidest idea in the world - not only do I lack the training, I also just had a car accident and have not yet even recuperated fully ... DUH! But sometimes, the mind can be a really strong and stubborn thing and sometimes I forget to think about or even ask myself about the physical details involved.

This is how my mind works: I want to do it so I will do it. Plain and simple. Not a "can I do it". And never a "should I do it" because that would almost all the time warrant a "no".

Ironman Canada here I come !!!

A good night's sleep is always wonderful ...

Saturday's training:

I can't really say I did any real training. Dipped in the pool for all of 20 min. Did a bunch of laps and tried to remain conscious of what I was doing underwater ... have to figure out what to change in my technique to get me farther on the same amount of energy.

What a lazy day ... even fell asleep beside my son Toulouse while he was reading and I was cuddling him. Then while I was snoozing, I felt him cosy up to Garnotte, his bear that I was using as a pillow ... the joy of motherhood :-)

The kids and I watched Shrek 2 last night, well more like they watched it, and I "tried" to watch it but I kept falling asleep. After the film, I sent them off to bed, and lay down again on the couch and that was that. I intended to do a spinning session after a short nap but woke up the next morning 9 1/2 hours later. Guess I needed the rest after several days of headache followed by several days of gastro.

Sunday's training, a much better attempt:

40 min. swim. = 6 laps warm-up, 6 laps kick drill, 10 laps pull-buoy, 40 continuous laps front crawl (1 km) = 66 laps ... not bad, not bad. I think the lifeguards were ready to kick me out of the pool as I was the absolute last one in it. Even my sons had gone to shower and change 10 min. earlier.

1.5 hour cycle with Mr. WT and Freida (I'll post a pic soon so you'll know who I'm talking about!) and watched one of my all-time fave movies "Love Actually". I liked this film so much I went to see it twice in the theatre (which I never do) and then bought it. Absolutely delicious blend of sad and happy, hope and romance ... call me a sap or a fool for melancholy ... Mr. SB was sad too tonight because he's been displaced ... sorry!

Confession: I did a little too much sitting straight up on my bike tonight not out of desire but more out of necessity. A cyclist friend told me recently about a problem men have about losing feeling "there". I only wish I had that problem ... OUCH!!

Hey, did you know that one should eat within an hour of working out? There's more to that than I will explain here but maybe in another post ... Anyway, you get the gist. Well, I'm off to munch on a bowl of cereal then soak in the bath.

Friday, April 07, 2006

You better watch it, I hear it's going around ...

Gastro. My tummy hurt yesterday. No training. I lay on my couch and watched CSI and even went to bed "early".

Today's training - Quite another story!

Had an amazing swim. 12 laps warm-up, 8 laps kick, 10 laps arms/pull-buoy, 80 laps front crawl (that's 2km non-stop!), 6 laps cool-down, breast and back stroke. Making a grand total of 116 laps or 2.9 km. Not bad for a recovering girl ... but I really have to work on my traction!

Was supposed to run and even told the CoolRunners I was going to but I wussed out (pouring rain ... phone call, blah, blah, you know). So I dug up my old bike wind trainer from the cellar which I haven't used for 10 years of so. Mr. WT met Freida for a 45-min. encounter, but darn that saddle!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

It's GONE!!!

Well, that was a pretty savage headache. Worse one I've had since that 3-week incessant migraine I had right after the accident. So I'm finally filling in the form for the SAAQ regarding claim for compensation and I take the doctor's report out of the envelope. "Concussion" - oh that would make sense now, the headaches ... wish I had been informed ... guess she didn't want to worry me too much? Argh ...

Training tonight:

Run to the pool, swim, and run back home.
Total running = 40 min., slow 6km
Total swimming = 50 min., sprint night ... agh! I haven't sprinted since before the accident ... ouf!

Sometimes when I'm in pain, I don't know if I can get through this Ironman training ... and times like now, when the pain finally goes away, I'm alright again and almost feel like I never had the accident, except I did, and that will never change. I still see it sometimes, too often in fact, and wish I could finish healing quicker.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Sigh ...

As I'm writing this, believe it or not, I still have the same headache that I've had over the past few days. I took a long nap yesterday and got up to go train with my tri group, but the headache had only gotten worse. Unbearable. I ate a bowl of cereal and took some painkillers, looked at Mr. SB, lay down on my couch and that was that. I woke up in the middle of the night to some infommercials, but was too tired and headachey to turn theT.V. off. Fell back asleep and awoke to some AM news show.


It is my prison right now and I want to scream!

Chronic pain really sucks. Alright, more painkillers this morning. I've had my day off from training ... let's see if I can get in a run and maybe a swim. Hmmm ... decisions, decisions. But it's awfully cold out there. Oh, I was so cosy on my couch last night!

Alright, I think I need some friendly support ... Group hug please ...

Monday, April 03, 2006


Alright, now that I've griped, I feel better now. Well, not really, but at least someone knows. To those who have been following my progress after the accident, well, I have to confess that I still get daily headaches, just in varying intensities and duration ... sigh. And right now I have a doozy. In fact, I've had it since yesterday. Ugh. Sure brings the productivity and creativity level down.

Alright, tonight's training. Easy, since it is a recuperation day. 30 min. visit each with Mr. Pool and Mr. SB. Made them both happy :-) I worked on drills in the pool and finished with a 500m swim. Real gentle cycling afterwards. It still feels like I'm working hills all the time though and wish I had more $$$ to get a real spinner. Mr. WT will be arriving soon though ... who's he? You'll just have to wait and see ...

By the way, no hip pain like after last Thursday's hill run, just some quad soreness from yesterday's run. Hey, I'm not doing too badly!

Sunday, April 02, 2006

It's not the biking that's hard, it's the saddle!

So, good training day today ... YAY!

Planned to meet the Coolrunning gang for a morning run, and of course, my not hearing the alarm go off this morning made me dash out late. I pulled up to the "start point" of the run and saw everyone, amazed that they were all there. I pulled Greta my car up as close as possible so that I could scream at them to wait for me while I parked, but what I thought was a gravel embankment leading up to a curb was preceded by a huge pot-hole into which Greta's wheel went. The bottom part of her bumper (which protruded out from the real bumper) collided with the little bit of curb that was not covered by the gravel. CRACK!!

Well, the ugly noise of plastic breaking certainly got everyone's attention. Grommit passed me the bits of my bumper and I drove off to find parking. Sorry Greta, please forgive me ... I swear, I'll glue you together soon and stick the bumper back in its place. No one will even notice unless they look under you ...

Well, the five of us, Chops, Grommit, Roly, TurtleBoy and I, headed out down the street and into the woods. Alright ... I didn't know we were trail running today ... The trail was horrible and was still icy! TB and I took it conservatively. Ain't no way either of us wanted to worsen our injuries. Ice = walking. The others ran/walked ahead throwing caution to the wind.

TB and I came to a turn ... where did the others go? Long story short, we tried some trails and looked for them, saw some great views, since of course, this was a trail that climbed Mont-Royal, and then concluded we had been ABANDONED. Waah!

Blessing in disguise, blessing in disguise. TB and I made our way through the paths and happily onto pavement where we headed over to St-Joseph's Oratory. What a steep climb behind it! TB poked fun at me when I decided to walk 10 ft. after the steepest part. Hey, I'm not ashamed ... I'm not going to kill myself so soon after starting to run again! Let's wait a week or two ...

We ran Summit Circle + "figure eight" and some other streets - nice $$$ neighbourhood. Wish I had a house there, but I don't think I even earn enough to pay for the real estate taxes. Next year, yeah ...

Made our way down Belvedere to Cote-des-Neiges and crossed over to climb Camilien Houde to the Beaver Lake chalet where we ran into fellow Coolrunners from the super fast Boreal running club. After a short break, off we went around the lake and back down the mountain path. TB dropped me off at my car and headed back to his gym, which was another 4km or so away.

Good run, TB, but I didn't expect to run 2 hours. I think we must have run about 17-18 km. Hills, at that! Way more than I bargained for, but very happy with the return.

Went home, pumped up Freida's tires (she's my racing bike) and took her out for her first ride this year, a 40-min. spin. I would have liked to have gone longer but:

1) the bike saddle was killing me
2) there was broken glass and other junk all over the roads and cycling paths left over from winter still
3) TB and lunch in Chinatown were beckoning
4) the bike saddle was killing me
5) I still had to fit in a shower

Met up with TB and DragonRouges (surprise!) for a scrumptious Chinese lunch ... yum, yum. Though I think I could have wolfed down even more! Guess that's what a long run does to you. Afterwards, I dropped in on some friends and promptly made myself comfy on their couch where I could have slept, and almost did, except they made me get up and do some social dancing.

Then I went to the pool for a half hour dip. Cool ... Nick the lifeguard, who used to be on my tri team commented on my perfectionist swimming technique and how I've improved incredibly from the last time he saw me, which was before the accident. I still have some things to work on but ... Woohoo!!

Now all I want to do the rest of today is vegetate, and lookee here ... Gray's Anatomy is on at 10pm. Sorry, Mr. SB, but you ain't gonna get any action tonight. Freida needed the attention more.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Wouldn't it be nice if work never interfered with training?

Tried to do some work today, but felt more like playing. Met a friend for a late lunch and we feasted on Vietnamese noodles and Chinese egg tarts afterwards. Yummy. I love food. My friend chided me for the half dozen donuts I bought the other day and I explained that I've been having cravings for doughy sweet things during the past few weeks and had to satiate it. Then I told him about the huge zucchini "cake" that I had made recently too.

Alright ... my training today:

Short slow 4k run just to move the legs. I envisioned running the marathon portion of the Ironman and played with the idea of running in one of the Ottawa Race Weekend events.

Swim - well, this was supposed to be a "long swim" in the pool with my tri group this evening, but since the regulars weren't there because of a special swimming event during the day, Erik the coach, opted to work on drills. Cool. I hadn't been doing any really because it was still difficult for my neck. Between warm-up and cool down, drills and regular laps, I figure we covered almost 2k in an hour and 15. Not bad, but I feel tired now ...

Bedtime. I have to try to get into the good habit of hitting the hay early and getting 8 hours sleep. I don't think averaging 3-4 hours/night or less is healthy for anyone, especially for Ironwoman Wannabe's. Anyway, my neck hurts a bit and I have to rest it before tomorrow's morning run. Besides, I'll lose an hour's sleep with setting the clock ahead ... Don't forget now!