Sunday, January 31, 2016


I did make it downtown to swim, and it was good. Slightly complicated during first stretch by a new young swimmer - a former age-group swimmer who wouldn't not wear fins and who didn't have a good feel for how to swim in a lane with others - she was nice, I should add, but it made it much harder for me than it was last week to skip 50s and hop back in at the right moment. Finally there was a crash and a confrontation (I was at the other end of the pool) and I am sorry to say she got out and the three of us had the lane to ourselves for the rest of the workout! Lane dynamics are so complicated....

Anyway I don't think I'll even really log it as I missed so many 50s. Coach said the total workout was 3500 and I will conservatively guess I swam 2800? Certainly that, possibly a bit more. It's not my favorite kind of workout - after some stroke count work (at which I am horrible), the two main sets were structured along these lines (1) 2 x 50 kick, 3 x 100 pull, 2 x 50 kick, 2 x 100 pull, 2 x 50 kick, 100 pull with specific instructions about breathing 3-5-3-7 etc. Then (2) 2 x 50 kick, 200 free (build by 50), 2 x 50 kick, 300 free, 2 x 50 kick, 400 free. Something like that anyway - it's a bit of a blur....

(One very nice bit at the end where I was allowed to put on fins myself - 8 x 25 as fly down free back on :40!)

I think I am going to have a bit of one-on-one coaching for stroke work. Really if I swim regularly three times a week I will get faster! Coach says the Saturday 9am slow lane is quite a bit slower, that's what I heard already from my friend Ellen, but I couldn't get up for it yesterday and don't imagine I will this coming Saturday either as I'm out late Friday and my mother's staying over. Maybe the following week....

1.5hr swim/c. 2800 yards


Ridiculously nice weather today - mid-50s, I was in short sleeves! Schedule said 30min easy (we are trying just to get back some frequency and make things utterly routine and easy to tick off), but I added in an additional segment - easy speed just now is practically a walk, it's good to get faster turnover/high knees/efficient arm movement going!

40min as 15:00 easy, 10 x (:20 great form/harder, :40 walking recovery), 15:00 easy

Saturday, January 30, 2016


Hahahahaha, not what you could call a quality workout (I suspect I was moving slowly enough that gait would have looked more speedwalking and less running to the outside observer!), but there are times when it is a triumph just getting it done! Path is mostly clear, and the weather is actually beautiful - close to 40F, not terribly windy. I enjoyed it, especially the solitary/meditative/being in nature part of it, with the two provisos that (a) my legs felt like blocks of wood (at first just sore quads from Thursday's descending lunges, but even once that loosened up a bit there was just no spring in 'em) and (b) my lower right-hand back was quite sore. Anyway, glad to say I executed it more or less as planned - I am saying "harder" instead of "fast" because I think that's more descriptive!

1.5hr run: 20:00 easy, then 1:00 harder/4:00 easy, 2:00 easy

(Had hoped to get to masters swim this morning, but wasn't asleep early and also had a couple hours of demanding and time-sensitive work to do today, so I turned off the alarm when it went off at 8, woke up properly around 10 and went to the office once I'd eaten some eggs for breakfast, did the work then came home and did the run. This was more realistic, as I also need to head downtown in an hour for family dinner as well.)

Thursday, January 28, 2016


Ah, I was satisfied with it earlier but went straight from the gym to an evening colloquium and dinner and am now just tired in a way that makes me dispirited!

It was fine, we continue to work on my mental block on squatting with bar and weight but I know I can continue to build strength even with very light weights, it's a satisfying workout....

conditioning set: wall throw with soft large ball (6lb) (4 x 10 for chest, overhead, left side, right side), then a seated floor bounce (partner rolls/tosses it back), 3 x 10.

squats warmup 3 x 10 with bar
squats work set 4 x 5 (still just with bar)

weighted eccentric lunges (5 seconds) 3 x 10 (I just had one chain, should really have had two but I felt it was sufficient!)

100 hip thrusts with band

3 x 10 dumbbell hamstring curl (42.5)

1hr lower body

Happy run/skitter!

Strange to say it is actually gorgeous running weather for this time of year - 40F, sunny, mild. But the footing is still quite treacherous - paths mostly clear once you get a little way into the park, but with a lot of puddles some significant subset of which have slick ice in a layer underneath. So it was really a mix of jogging and just picking my way across slippery stretches - work set was supposed to be 10 x (:30 fast, 3:30 easy), but it was as much as I could do just concentrating on staying upright!

1hr very easy

Spring semester schedule

It's a funny one - I have a lot on my plate but very flexible daytime scheduling. With huge proviso that I cannot get up in the morning until I absolutely have to (hard for me to fall asleep before 1am or so), so as the economists say "priors" tell me that exercising before even a mid-morning meeting is not practical.

Here is what I have drafted (I love the glow that emanates from a brand-new aspirational schedule!):

Monday - am run 40-60, pm deadlifts

Tues - am :30 run + midday 1hr masters swim, pm bench

Wednesday - 60-90 run

Thurs. - midday 40-60 run, pm squats

Fri. - pm: second upper body session when possible (masters swim a possibility)

Sat. - 9am 90 masters swim, pm run (short or long)

Sun.- am run (long or short), pm 90 masters swim

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Non-intrepid run-trudge

Hahaha, it's a mess out there, though there was a clearish stretch of path once I got a bit further in....

Dragged heels about getting out the door and as a result only had time for half an hour, frustrated with myself (will see if I can get up in time to run before my 10am meeting tomorrow, but prior experience suggests that may be unrealistic).

:30 slide/trudge/run!

(Good for the soul, I should note, to run in the park rather than indoors.)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016


Ah, I am so happy to be back with my team! This was very good. T. and I worked together and it was super-fun.

Let me see if I can now reconstruct:

5 x 1:00 wall bounce (1:00 rest)

bench: 5 x 2 x 100

circuit x 5:

5 pushups
10 ring rows (substitute for pull-ups)
20 pull-apart (band)
20 shrugs @ 52.5
20 abs

single-arm standing overhead press: 4 x 5 x 22.5

1.25hr upper body


Hoping to do a run-swim combo like this on Tuesdays and Thursdays, though the logistics need some fine-tuning (I dragged my heels about getting out of the house, took a taxi but it was an interminable trip due to combination of regular weekday traffic plus ongoing snow obstruction).

:30 very slow on the track - I really think my fast walk is faster than my jog pace right now! (right groin muscle felt very stiff, more in the way of having been exercised than a pull or tear and it warmed up by the end, but will keep an eye on that)
1hr masters swim

Difficult to count yardage on this as I was slower than lane pace and had to sit things out tactically. I like the coach and there's one of the same lanemates from Sunday which is nice. Workout was more or less as follows:

600 warmup as 100 free, 50 back (I did 450)

6 x 150 on 2:40 (did the first one in full, after that just did 100 as that pace is currently aspirational, and I also missed one hard fifty due to miscounting, either my own or that of lane leader - I am not sure which!) as 100 at 80%, 25 at 90-100%, 25 recovery (so I did I think 600 total)

12 x 75 WITH FINS (glory, glory!!! I was finally able to keep up! I did sit out a few lengths because I had the wrong size fins and had to get out and change them - they were slipping off my feet and giving me a cramp!) odds: 25 fly (love!), 50 back kick; evens: 25 back swim, 50 free swim (maybe I did 800 total?)

Then: 4 x 25 on :40 as breast down, fly back (and the fly felt GREAT, I have to say), 2 x 100 with first one hard, second one easy (300)

1350 yards swim swim plus 800 swim with fins - that sounds about right

Monday, January 25, 2016


So, so happy to be back at it! The break seems to have done no harm, I had a good time with my work set today except that my hands have grown soft with three weeks of no deadlifting...

(Skipped initial prowler bit as it activated my knee noticeably. Swimming tired it out - didn't make everything clench up around it, swimming is just a looser sport than cycling, but the bit on the insight was sore during and after.)

Deadlifts: 8 x 3 x 161

4 x 10 ring row

Incline row: 5 x 10 x 37.5

gunshow (yellow band, neutral grip), 125

1hr deadlifts and auxiliary

Had intended to make myself run now but it is just not going to happen! Couldn't do it this morning due to time and logistics crunch - I did however get to the Columbia gym to register for the semester and sign up for lap swim. I decided to go for TThF11-12 rather than the M-Th9am one, seemed more realistic and also there's a T Th noon masters swim at Chelsea Piers - I am thinking I am making an official commitment to three proper swim workouts per week, four in weeks where I can do it. (Sunday is usually good. There's Saturday 9-10:30am if I can get myself down here and also Friday 6:30-8 as an alternative if I'm more on the late than early vibe, though I'm not crazy about swimming in the evening - had a terrible time falling asleep last night.)

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Happy happy exercise session....

Friday was a disaster due to fatigue, I was in a state of near collapse and felt very discouraged about the prospects for good nutrition and regular exercise now that my semester has started! But I had some decent regrouping yesterday, despite effectively being trapped at home due to the storm, and a good exercise session this evening has somewhat restored my fitness morale.

(Lots of stuff on my mind, including the revolutionary thought that my dislike for cycling may really mean that I should mostly give up triathlon - with the counterintuitive consequence that I can afford to swim a lot more if I am not worrying at all about bike fitness!)

Anyway did .5hr on the track (it's a nice one, quarter of a mile and spacious/with huge high windows out to the river - about 100 times more appealing than the rather dreadful though still convenient Dodge Fitness Center one which is 1/10 mile and underground!) as 10:00 easy and then 10 x (1:00 hard, 1:00 walk), then went to a thoroughly enjoyable masters swim.

I could feel the sore place inside my knee, especially during kick sets, and I also remembered that other time I went to masters swim and then was virtually incapable of executing the next day's powerlifting workout, so I thought I might cap it at an hour or so, but really when I said at that point that I might get out the coach coaxed me into staying, and the second & remaining part of the workout was certainly easier than what we had just done so I felt good about staying in!

(I think I'm going to book a few private sessions with this coach - Brent was recommending some serious drill activity, and it always gets me motivated to work one-on-one. Also it is my theory that this was Oliver Sacks' swim coach!)

Workout as follows.


200 swim
200 kick
200 pull (I missed a 50 - my pull is woefully slow)
200 drill
200 swim choice (I think I skipped a 50 on this too)

IM set (more or less - I love these patterned ones, that was what really snagged me for the second set I think, I couldn't resist the chance to repeat the pattern with variation!):

4 x 25 flutter kick (:5 rest)

3 x 100 IM descending (:10 rest) (I missed a 50 on the first one as gal in front of me had cramps and we stopped to assess)

4 x 25 kick in IM order (:5 rest)

2 x 100 IM descending (:10 rest)

4 x 25 kick choice

100 IM quality effort!

freestyle set:

catch drill - the four lengths are as follows, first one "ET" - i.e. only index finger out, second with two fingers, third as "OK" (outside three fingers), fourth as regular swim feeling the catch

4 x 25 ET drill on :40

3 x 100 free on 2:05

4 x 25 ET drill

2 x 100 free on 2:05

4 x 25 ET drill

100 free quality effort

100 swim down

total yardage 2750 (not bad!)

Hahahaha, I love swimming, don't know why it took a swim FAIL at my event last week to get me so enthusiastically back in the pool!

(It was also a very EXPENSIVE exercise session in that I only got myself to the gym by dint of a daytime taxi and then the taxi home proved too much to resist also - it was worth it in terms of minimizing travel time, but I'd better not get too much in the habit of it!)

Thursday, January 21, 2016


Didn't manage to get out for my "just am" run - it was too cold in the morning when I had the window for it and I used afternoon window for a desperately needed NAP instead. Need to get Columbia gym membership for this semester so that I have track and pool right there for 9am workouts on days when the temperature hasn't gotten above freezing (I like cold weather but the asthma doc rightly says no outside exercise when it's too cold).

Going to powerlifting club was like coming home - I love that group so much! H. and T. only got there at the end (H. was sweating off last few pounds pre-meet in the sauna, T. works later on Thursdays at the gymnastics coaching job), but C. and P. and J. and I were having a LOVELY time with our session - ah, so good....

Josh eased me into things gently - just goblet squats, nothing with the bar....

(1) goblet squats: 4 x 10 x 37.5
(2) lunges x 2 chains, 6 seconds descent (3 x 6)
(3) band hip raise with 5-second isometric hold (3 x 8)
(4) dumbbell hamstring curl (37.5)
(5) 100 abs with band
(6) 100 curls with band

Wednesday, January 20, 2016


Just 30min short and easy (life reentry day is OVERWHELMING). Waited till lunchtime for temperature to warm up, but in theory I have a CUNNING PLAN for this semester that involves always exercising at 9am on Mon-Thurs and swimming if it's below freezing/running if temperature is already into the 30s. Need to get gym membership and lap swim class fees paid though before that's possible, and must do one million more pressing things first!

:30 easy

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Final "spa week" activity

Not exercise as such, but I just had an excellent therapeutic massage at Back to Health Cayman (office at World Gym). I need to find someone that good in NYC! I think the Canadians have a much better culture of massage and physio than the USians....

Last Cayman run for a while!

It is ALMOST what you might call cool - I have been lucky in the weather. Just did 1hr pretty easy (legs are tired and I'm also having some medial soreness again on the left knee, will see if the masseuse can bang it out for me):

(1) 20:00 easy
(2) 10 x 1:00 harder (legs didn't have true "hard" in them!), 1:00 walk
(3) 20:00 easy

Monday, January 18, 2016

Race fail/Monday hot yoga!

It is always potentially hubristic to figure that you don't need much swim training before a tri, and this time (it was more of a calculated risk than a true bit of overconfidence!) it bit me hard. Race director reported 20mph wind coming from the south, and warned that the current on the first leg of the swim was going to be horrible (2 x triangle). This was indeed the case, I was basically working as hard as I could to progress by inches (wasn't sure either time I was actually going to make it around the first buoy!). I didn't look at my watch, but if they'd been enforcing time cut-offs I would have gotten pulled, and I knew it would be touch and go thereafter. I felt truly dreadful for the first 10 miles of the bike - I don't think I've ever felt so bad in a race - was still riding into aforementioned headwind so there was no way to take it easy, my heartrate was at top of Friel zone 3 and I was working very hard and only going about 12mph because of the wind!

I hung in there as long as I could, but I was feeling very sick to my stomach - I made it to the Rum Point turnaround and back past the Frank Sound Road junction, but my stomach and general feeling of wobbliness/shakiness made me decide to stop for a rest to see if I could settle things down. Instead I threw up horribly by the side of the road and basically couldn't even stay standing up - some minutes of sitting by the side of the road and doing self-assessment told me that my day was done! It was around mile 22, I was about 3 hours into my race and the whole thing had just been incredibly too strenuous - I wasn't having overheating as such but the heat really doesn't help.)

(It was about 6 more miles to transition, and if I'd been on my second loop I think I would have decided to ride it in myself, but I was very sure I didn't have another 35 miles in me!)

No regrets on this one. Doing a little more swimming in the last couple weeks wouldn't have helped, I would have needed much deeper swim fitness for it to be OK (I'm a slow swimmer even in good training). I prioritized powerlifting and running in December, hot yoga and running this month, and it was as much as I could do to add in six to eight weeks of adequate bike training - November and December are two of the three busiest months of my work year (the other is April). And I had no second-guessing about the decision to stop - I never have felt so bad before in a race, and I had nothing at stake in terms of finishing!

Note to self: two out of the three times I've done this race, the swim has been really challenging - if I am going to attempt the aquabike again in future, I need to put other things aside and have eight weeks of proper bike AND swim training!

c. 1.5hr very arduous swimming into current (1.2mi only - the "easy" time I did this race my swim was :50, the other "hard" time was 1:10, this wasn't rough water like last time but the current was unbelievable!), c. 1.5hr bike - before I called it a day!

Got a long night of sleep, didn't run but went to 8:45 hot yoga which was great - my favorite teacher, and I finally got a good camel on the second set. Flying home tomorrow but not till mid-afternoon, should have a run first thing and there's a 9am massage appointment too (my knee is worse again today after strenuous exercise yesterday).

Saturday, January 16, 2016


I love this bicycle! It is PERFECT for these conditions...

Confirmed what I knew already, that I would like cycling a lot more if I was always and only on empty country roads - set out around 7:45 from the hotel out on the East End loop where we're staying for race weekend, had no dread (just normal amount of pre-exercise heel-dragging) and enjoyed ride in its entirety. Pretty windy - speeds and effort levels quite variable. Rode the loop in mostly Friel zone 2 (figure I can ride in zone 3 tomorrow, will cap HR around 150).

1:10, 18.66mi, avg 16mph (max 22), avg HR 133 (max 153)

Friday, January 15, 2016

Hot yoga!

That was good. Really it has been the unofficial program of heat acclimation - also has helped a lot with all the tightness in legs and back. I feel a bit sheepish that I did so little real lifting on this trip, but it was a worthwhile tradeoff I think. We'll head to the East End this evening, I'll do a bike ride tomorrow morning and then it's on for Sunday! (Monday I will fit in one more hot yoga and possibly an easy run first thing; Tuesday I have scheduled a massage at the gym for 9am, flight doesn't leave till 3:30pm!)

1hr HOT

Pyramid scheme!

David's instructions said 90 minutes ("90 min easy. Just run/walk, take photos, and relax. Want you rested for the race"), but since I'm doing hot yoga at 8:45 and since my legs really feel tired (plus always that annoying tendinitis-y feeling on right hamstring) I decided an hour would be quite enough. A pyramid scheme!

3 x 20:00 as (1) easy warmup (4:1) (2) UP! 1/1/2/1/3/1/4/1/5/1 (one-minute rest as walk interval) (3) DOWN! 5/1/4/1/3/1/2/1/1/1

1:00 total

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Hot yoga...

GRUESOMELY hot! I was OK for a while, then just felt overwhelmed. TOO DARN HOT! Felt distinctly wobbly in the legs as I walked home, possibly a bit underfueled as well - have just eaten some yogurt and feel a lot more normal. I forgot that the other really bad thing about the 1.25hr class isn't just that it's longer but since there's another hot class in there fifteen minutes following, they don't open the doors towards the end of class, just turn on a dehumidifier....

1.25hr hot yoga


Last-minute choice to go to 6am spin class instead of masters swim - partly I just don't like riding my bike over there (a turn across traffic and a stressful roundabout!), but also it dawned on me that this close to race day I don't really need a hard hour-long swim workout; it is more likely I would prong something in a shoulder or generally tire muscles out excessively than get mental benefits (I have enough swim confidence already!). Will go to hot yoga later in the morning for the heat adaptation benefits - the timing of this has been just right (blood plasma volume!)...

1hr spin

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Hot yoga!

I had a feeling of mild dread when I saw that there was a humidifier pumping out extra steam in the studio - not sure why anybody thought this was necessary! This teacher is less good at time management than the others also; her verbal cues aren't as sharply aligned with when you really should be doing things, and she's got a bad habit of telling you to put your arms up and THEN digressing onto some instructions as muscles rapidly fade...

Anyway it is a good class regardless, and to my HUGE relief she opened the doors after the first camel pose. Only a few more hot yoga on this trip, that makes me sad!

1hr hot yoga


One thing I won't miss about SPA WEEK is the early mornings .... but it's nice getting out there and getting it done. (I decided not to wait and run later with the Wednesday Night Run Club folks, it's just too likely that by then I don't feel like it.)


:50 as 4:1, two for warmup and then with last :30 of each run interval HARD

Tuesday, January 12, 2016


I really like this gym - the people there are extremely nice and it's a genuine weight-lifters' gym, everyone on the floor (pretty much) was doing things what I would call properly! Anyway just did same upper body workout from last week - my legs felt REALLY tired after this morning's spin class, and I think that though on the whole I am "training through" and conceptualizing Sunday as another long training day, it will behoove me to let legs recover a bit between now and then.

.5hr upper body

(1) bench 5 x 6 @ 85
(2) circuit x 4: (a) incline dumbbell bench x 8 @ 25 (that's heavy!) (b) single-arm row x 10 @ 25 (that's not!)
(3) front raise 4 x 10 @ 5
(4) lat pulldown 3 x 10
(5) rope triceps pushdown 5 x 10

I am torn between feeling the love for hot yoga and experiencing an extremely strong desire to be at home again with my powerlifting teammates! Looking forward to this next training cycle - the fall one was great but the November-December felt unfocused due to too many holidays and breaks, this one really should be better....

Gear test

Just a very short swim to make sure it's OK to wear these pants on Sunday. Zoot is a triathlon brand but you never quite know until you tested 'em swimming whether any given pair of shorts is really suitable for the swim as well as the bike. These are the best tri pants ("knickers"!) I have ever had, I am going to order another pair while they are still available....

(It is too late for me to develop swim fitness, I will just have to fall back on the threefold facts that (a) I am strong (b) I have good aerobic fitness just now and (c) I really like swimming!)


That is a very good class. I need to get in the water now for a bit (to test whether these long triathlon pants are really OK for swimming or not - they are marketed as such, but I think it will be a good idea to test that), but drinking a "green machine" smoothie while sitting at the computer in air-conditioning has made me so chilly I might need to have a cup of hot tea first!

1hr spin!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Hot yoga!

Spa week #2 now off to a resoundingly enjoyable start (it is really the hot yoga that is the constitutive element, otherwise it would just be a big training week!). I love the studio here so much - if I could find comparable one-hour hot yoga close to home in NYC, I would do it more often, and I'm even thinking about starting up with the full-on Bikram (I am keen on the Bikram Yoga Harlem studio near where I live too, but I do prefer the 1hr class, less of a commitment, and the Bikram-approved carpet makes things much smellier - that said, they have a dachshund as their mascot which is a huge plus - he has been known to run in and out of the women's locker room looking for treats in people's bags). Anyway, very good class today.

1hr hot yoga


I could feel yesterday's ride in my legs, and also a good deal of tenderness in that right glute-hamstring attachment (which was twanging whenever I rode in aero). However, the only important thing in this case (I am not training for anything endurance-sport-related, other than wanting to be adequately prepared for this weekend's race) is getting out and getting it done! Next up is hot yoga at 8:45. SPA WEEK #2 (this one will end more excitingly with a "staycation" at the Reef Resort and Sunday's Mercuryman aquabike! I am leading a fortunate life indeed....

1hr as 20:00 easy, 10 x (1:00 hard, 2:00 walk), 10:00 easy

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Long ride!

Hahahahaha, strange to say that was a GLORIOUSLY enjoyable ride! I am laughing at myself, I am an idiot - I was CONSUMED with dread again beforehand, but really it's good as soon as I'm actually riding, and this was subjectively more enjoyable than last week. Got to rendezvous point about 20 minutes early, got off bike and took off shoes to give feet some relief from pain and ate a granola bar, then found I did have fortitude to get back on for one more little out and back. (It helped that miles were at 38 point something and I thought I would like it better if I could see a number starting with a four!)

Best sight: a small flock of Cayman parrots flying across the road in front of me....

2:44 (2 breaks off the clock), 42.31mi, 15.4mph avg (windier today I think than last week), 135 HR avg (155 max)

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Upper body/spin!

Upper body workout, just slightly curtailed due to time pressure:

(1) narrow grip bench 10 x 3 @ 65 (:30 rest)
(2) dumbbell floor press 3 x 10 @ 30
(3) 100 face pulls (skipped)
(4) circuit x 4: (a) lateral raise 10 @ 5 (b) shrugs 20 @ 50
(5) 200 125 abs
(6) dumbbell skull-crushers 5 x 10 x ? (did as 2 x 25 x 10s - no medium-weight dumbbells in sight)

1hr spin!


I like masters swim so much! It wasn't perfect, I found the ride over stressful (need to think about whether it is really worth keeping this bike for that purpose or whether I would be better off just hoofing it) and the coach was pretty late - but - glorious! We did mostly drill so I am not sure this is exactly right (sets were assigned as fours but I am slow):

Warmup: 400 swim, 200 kick

Drill set:

3 x 25

3 x 50

3 x 75

50 slow-motion swim in spirit of drill

The kids start practice at 7am sharp so I couldn't stay in for longer. I will definitely go next Thursday morning too, but I might try and get in for Monday or Tuesday evening as well - it felt good to be back in the water properly. More swimming in 2016! (It makes me super-wheezy though! Swimming pool chemicals I think....)

Friday, January 8, 2016

Hot yoga!

Best one yet! It was very hot but I tolerated it better - maybe I am actually getting some heat adaptation....

1hr hot yoga!


Wasn't feeling a lot of vim for it this morning. Very homesick - especially missing the cats and my powerlifting teammates! But I feel OK now it's done.

55min as

15:00 warmup

10 x (:40 hard, :20 walk)
10 x (:30 hard, :30 walk)
10 x (:20 hard, :20 walk)

10:00 cooldown jog

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Sea swim!

Bit of a strange day involving WAY too much napping! However it is the purpose of SPA WEEK(S) to get in good shape for the coming semester, so really that's fine...

... and I did just get out for a short sea swim. It's a particularly beautiful day - often I find it rather too warm and humid here even in January, but it's absolutely gorgeous just now, cooler than usual and with less moisture in the air. (So as to say, 82F and 70% relative humidity rather than mid- to high 80s for both numbers.)

Got a belated but warm email back from the masters swim coach confirming details, so I think I will try and get there on Saturday morning at 6. Could use a few of those sessions as mental preparation for Mercuryman swim (fitness is immaterial as it's not enough time to make much of a difference!).

:25 sea swim!


Not easy getting out of bed this morning - it took me too long to fall asleep last night, and then as I was waking up I was in the thick of an unpleasant dream in which my two cats were somehow downtown at G's apartment rather than at home where they were supposed to be for incoming catsitter C, and one of the carriers I had was missing some pieces and the other one was just a sandwich-sized ziploc bag into which I was trying to fit little cat Mickey! Anyway,

:50 spin

Wednesday, January 6, 2016


Don't have much of a take on swim/bike fitness and heat acclimation this month as opposed to January of 2013 and 2014, but just took a quick look at prior year Aquabike times (I wasn't here for it last year) to get some kind of a sense:

2013: swim 51:03, bike 3:15:04, total race time 4:11:11
2014: swim 1:05:06 (very rough sea that year), bike 3:20:02, total race time 4:30:39

I suspect my bike fitness may be a bit worse but the superior equipment should compensate for that in terms of time on course. A lot of it depends on wind. Will prepare to be out there for 4.5hr total, it would take unusual conditions I think for it to be much longer than that? We will see, anyway!

Hot yoga!

Hot but very enjoyable today, which confirms my feeling that on this particular trip at least I should just stick to the 1hr class. Two things that augmented my enjoyment, one accidental/felicitous and one deliberate: the teacher forgot standing bow-pulling-pose (when I'm not in good hot yoga shape, I can pretty much either do standing head-to-knee or standing bow-pulling but not both!); and she also opened all the doors immediately following camel pose, which is extremely helpful for morale....

I really should swim later, that's the thing I've been deficient in this week. Shooting to go to masters swim tomorrow morning also and I suspect it will be more enjoyable/less onerous to get to if I have a short swim this afternoon first. (Also need to change tube on old bike and sub in the other pedals - it is my theory that I will like using that bike to get around more if I can ride it without being clipped in!)

1hr hot yoga!


Hmmmm, I really hate getting up in the morning so much, but it must be done if I want to run happily rather than unhappily outside here! Just did :40 as that is what I think I would have done if I'd hewed to original plan and gone to Wednesday Night Run Club (it is better to run in the morning, evening running will overheat me in a way that makes it harder to sleep). Anyway:

:40 as :10 easy, 10 x (1:00 hard, 1:00 walk), :10 easy

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Hot hot yoga

As if to compensate for yesterday, hot yoga today was GRUESOMELY hot - the teacher left the heater on even for the second half of class which is not the usual thing here at all, and many of us were basically just flopped on mats! I had to lie down for both sets of the last two standing postures, that's fairly extreme - every time I stood back up to try again I felt extremely lightheaded!

(Factors: (a) just hotter than usual; (b) 1.25hr class rather than 1hr; (c) walked over in a hurry especially once I realized that rather than being fifteen minutes early I had spaced out and forgotten class starts at 10:30 rather than 10:45, I made it only in the nick of time!; (d) already did 2hr exercise.)

Anyway I still felt pretty good - my forearms weren't overheated in the way they feel when it's really really too hot, I think my HR was just jacked up right away due to earlier exercise. Making a note, though, to avoid the 1.25hr classes when possible and also not to think it's a good idea to do strength training earlier in the day and then hot yoga later!

1.25hr hot yoga

Upper body/spin!

Hmmmmm, conditions here are mighty propitious for a good SPA WEEK....

Was a little later getting to the gym than I intended, so had to split the strength workout into two and finish the second bit after spin, but that's fine I think.

1hr spin
.75hr upper body as follows (Josh has given me two upper days this week and only one lower due to high other workload and also the general mess my knee/leg has been in):

(1) 5 x 6 x 85 bench
(2) 4 x 10 lat pulldown
(3) circuit x 4 on 1:00 rest: (a) incline dumbbell bench 8 @ 20 (b) single-arm row 10 @ 25
(4) front raise 4 x 10 @ 8
(5) rope triceps pushdown 5 x 10

Monday, January 4, 2016

Happy hot yoga!

Hahahaha, it was MUCH less hot than it is supposed to be, maybe even only 98 or so - I love it, that's the perfect temperature! I would do hot yoga every day if I could find a heterodox studio where they allowed as how 100F is more appropriate than 105F+ for many. Anyway, great class, I enjoyed every minute of it and didn't have to sit anything out.

Spa week #1 is off to a thoroughly satisfactory start! (Thursday through Sunday were practice days, now I have a full fortnight - have been having slight wish for spa MONTH, but really it is for the best, I am looking forward to the spring semester and I know that by the time it starts I will be impatient again for more stimulation.)

1hr not-so-hot yoga


I was ten minutes short of goal, I turned around ten minutes early and could only eke out ten extra at the end rather than twenty, but it was pretty good otherwise. I HATE GETTING UP EARLY! But it must be done if I want to run outside, and running long on the treadmill is so dreadful (and ALSO very warm). This morning it was actually a relatively humane temperature outside....

1:30 as 20:00 easy, then 10 x (2:00 hard, 2:00 walk), 10 x (1:00 hard, 1:00 walk), 10:00 cooldown

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Longish ride!

Hahahaha, when I haven't done a real outdoor ride for a while (or even when I have) I am consumed with dread leading up to it - I was sleeping very lightly and fitfully, I think I checked the time every ten minutes between three am and six! However as soon as I am actually riding it is not at all bad, and when I am done I am suffused with a sense of satisfaction and enjoyment. That said, I really should have ridden longer - but very tight right lower back and impendingly agonizing left toe pain conspired with my perennial "quit while I'm ahead" mentality re: cycling to call it at 2:30 rather than doing the full projected three hours. (I had reached my pickup point and couldn't quite bring myself to do one more out and back.)

Totals: 2:18:46, 36.62mi, 15.8mph avg. Translated, this means that my 56-mile ride for the aquabike in two weeks is going to be SOMEWHAT horrible - I concluded that I have to ride quite a bit harder so that I'm not on the machine for so long, as the limit has much more to do with mechanical tolerance for body position (feet especially!) than with fitness as such. Will cap at top of Friel zone 3 and expect to ride pretty much fully in that zone.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Hot hot yoga!

Just the 1hr version today, which seemed considerably more manageable (also I think this teacher is a little more humane in the matter of heat in the second half of the class). IT IS GOOD - I forgot how much I like how it makes me feel. Seems especially beneficial right now as I have been ridiculously tight and sore in various spots for last 6 weeks or so - back is always very tight, this sore knee and terribly tight quads etc., so I think it is possibly even more to the point on this trip than keeping up with powerlifting workouts.

1hr hot yoga


I was actually awake really early but I had an aversion to getting up and out of the door! (I piggyback on B.'s early-to-bed schedule when I'm here, it's mighty convenient.) This run was on the training schedule, it is a good one for the warm climate:

:40 as 15:00 easy, then 10 x (:20 hard, :40 walk), then 15:00 easy

Friday, January 1, 2016

Sea swim!

Didn't manage to pick up reassembled bike yesterday before store closed for half-day, and the other bike had a tire that deflated quickly after I pumped it up - not a huge job to replace the tube, but I couldn't quite be bothered, and then not surprisingly I didn't get up early enough to run before it got light!

(We rang in the Irish New Year at Fidel Murphy's and were in bed by 9pm or so, but a fair amount of alcohol was consumed nonetheless and may have impaired sleep quality.)

But I had a very nice swim just now in the sea - there is quite a bit of cloud cover, the water wasn't too hot. I like swimming!

(Swimming is a technique-based sport, but it doesn't hurt to have back/arm/core strength - I am really looking forward to the aquabike thing in two weeks!)

.5hr sea swim!