Thursday, June 28, 2012

Let Me Know if Coconut Oil Goes on Sale!

I need coconut oil to go on sale.
 I have been spooning coconut oil into my mouth daily to get it all of its health benefits.

 Now I've learned that it isn't just good for internal use.

It's good for external use also.

This from the Ironman Training Website:


Three reasons triathletes should add this oil to their regimen

(FYI - since I have already talked about all the great things coconut oil does for your insides in an earlier blog - March 2, 2012, I have only included the portions of the article that deal with the EXTERNAL wonders)

Coconut extracted from grated, pressed coconut meat, or "copra," coconut oil is one of the most popular coconut products among healthy enthusiasts for both is high nutrient content and a wide range of applications.

Coconuts continue to drop into the nutritional spotlight......
Skin health: Hours spent training outdoors means prolonged sun exposure, which can lead to discoloration, wrinkles or overly dry skin. Coconut oil’s soothing properties and antioxidant powers make it an ideal ingredient in homemade skincare solutions. Mix it into your sunblock for added protection on long rides and runs. Post-workout, add it to your bath, or apply directly to clean, dry skin. It also works exceptionally well as a glide or lube for under the wetsuit or bike chamois.
Hair protection: Chlorine, swim caps and helmets can contribute to broken, straw-like strands. To nourish and repair, use coconut oil as a leave-in conditioner, applying about a teaspoon to washed, towel-dried hair. Its natural fatty acids will help lock in moisture to keep hair healthy before, during and post-race.

So if I start smelling like a BIG coconut, you know why....I am now taking for my insides AND putting on my outside.

You can see what is important in my extinguisher, coconut oil, red wine and coffee.

All the fruits and veggies are in the fridge...maybe I'll show you sometime.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tinman Recap

Short and Sweet, and not so Sweet.
I finished Tinman 1 minute faster than I did last year.
Since the reverse triathlon is not a sanctioned event, I don't know how it took me to run, or T1, or bike, or T2 swim....I only know my entire tag time

And it was shorter than last years.

My goal is to continue to age every year (I mean, that's all our goal, right?), while maintaining my fitness.
Well, to improve from last year makes me very happy.
I've read lots of studies about women and fitness and how every year women can expect to lose a certain percentage of muscle mass and fitness.
I am expecting to be the exception to those studies' findings.

That's the short and sweet.

The not sweet - my knee is jacked.
My kneecap is throbbing and aching.

I've iced it.
I've taped it.
I've rubbed goop into it.
I have popped numerous pills into my mouth.
All to no avail.

Tomorrow I am seeing the doctor.
 I know what he is going to say - RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevate).
I can live with that advice, though I will probably ignore it.
I just want to make sure nothing is torn, ripped or ?

I need to have my knee is good shape so I can train-n-tri.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Twinge, Tape and Race!

I picked up my race number for tomorrow's Tinman.

I raced (well, in my case, evented) this reverse sprint triathlon last year. I am a tri-nerd and I do keep track of my times for "events", so I pulled out my notebook and took a peek at what I did last year.....

This event is not sanctioned - it is a "fun"raiser for the San Bernardino Rotary. I support the Rotary because years ago another chapter sent me to India for a month on a work exchange program. I was a reporter then and while I was in India I was inside only one newspaper. The rest of the time I was shuttled from one "event" to another. And the events then did not involved swimming, biking and running. The events I attended in India involved weddings, parties, visiting families, touring factories, riding elephants, watching tigers and learning to eat with my hands while drinking awesome Indian beer.
I did write a newspaper story about my experience when I got back, so some reporting was involved.

But since tomorrow's event is not "sanctioned" by the USAT, they don't have to keep track of times for the run, T1, bike, T2 and the swim. It is just ONE BIG FAT TIME!

Last year - 1:13:04.8

Before some people gasp about my time for this 5k run, 9 mile bike, 100 yard swim in a pool, I want to let you know that last year running was NOT my strong suit and riding bikes up hills with 7 to 11 percent grades was NOT my strong suit and swimming was NOT my strong suit.
And to be honest, getting through transition quickly was NOT my strong suit.

What was my strong suit?
Loving Triathlon!!!

During the past year I have worked on all this....and I have hope (I mean I have a year's worth of training behind me) that at tomorrow's TINMAN I can better my time.
I do have hope (saying a prayer) that I can better my time without causing further injury to my right knee.

I am pretty sure that I can bike and swim faster than I did last year. Darn sure I can make it through transitions tomorrow cleaner and faster.

We will see.

If you had asked me 2 weeks ago, I would have said, YES....faster and stronger.

But that was before.
Before I tried to carry a stack of clean towels into a yelling clean, but naked, teenage boy in the bathroom who forgot to look if there were any clean towels BEFORE he took a shower.

Long story short - I carried towels, walked into brick fireplace, fell down, threw towels, cried and swore. Then naked teenage boy had to run out, grab a towel, then wait on me the rest of the night.
This is not me, but you get the idea. I had to miss my scheduled bike ride and sit in front of the TV (torture for me) with ice on my knee for 4 hours while my boy brought me aspirin and beer and called and ordered pizza.

I thought my knee was getting better.

I have had a couple of runs since then - a 2.5 mile walk/run and my knee was okay, just a little stiff and sore; a 6.36 run, my knee was okay, but I did ice it afterward; and a 4.91 mile walk/run yesterday. It was a walk/run because every once in a while my knee would get a weird shooting, tingling pain on the outside.

I have also been bike riding since my laundry accident. Six rides to be exact and my knee did not hurt until Tuesday when I rode the Tinman course with my triathlon club for a pre-course ride. The bike ride has a nice little hill called "Devil's Canyon." According to my Garmin, the hill goes a little something like this for the grade  - 4, 5, 4, 5, 6, 5, 6, 5, 7, 6, 7, 6, 8, 7, 6, 9, 8,10, 11....and that's when I stopped looking at my Garmin and calling out the grade to a friend and started focusing on my pedaling....pull with hamstrings, don't push with KNEE!!!!

I walked away without a limp, but I had a twinge.

Then I mountain biked the other day and I still could feel a twinge. It's hard to describe a twinge unless you have had a twinge. But it was definitely a twinge.
Okay, this guy knows what a twinge is.

At the Triathlon Connection meeting the other night I raised my hand high when the local chiropractor was looking for a guinea pig to get a KNEE taped, but someone else got picked. Drat!

I looked at my knee today and it has green bruises on it.
It might be a little hard to tell, but I have bruising on the top right of my knee and on the side of my knee. But the good news is that my cut is scabbed up and healing. It must be the coconut oil I take everyday.

No worries about my knee, though, because I have tape and directions.
I also watched a couple of videos.

I hope I did this right.
Do they do knee lifts? There was a lot of EXTRA skin on my knee after I taped it.

Goal for Tinman  - Finish!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sunscreen and the Triathlete

I spent a lot of time outside this weekend - cycling, running and gardening.

I am diligent about putting on sunscreen, except during a triathlon.

This month several magazines I get lectured about the importance of sunscreen.

From one magazine - A shot glass's worth of sunscreen is enough to cover your whole body, but dermatologists say you may want to add a second coat to your nose, lips, hands, ears and the tops of your feet.

I am well acquainted with the shot glass. I use several of them every morning when I take my vitamins.

What's another shot glass to my regimen. I just hope I don't get my shot glass full of sunscreen confused with my shot glass of Kefir. I may need several cups of coffee before I start this regimen.

One magazine recommended running in the morning because a study from the University of North Carolina found that a protein responsible for DNA repair is more active in the a.m., which may mean morning sun is less likely to damage your skin.
It would be great if I could get my run done in the morning every time, but sometimes it just doesn't work out that way for me. Sometimes I have to run in the afternoon, or at noon. Yikes. I guess I will be applying more sunscreen for those after a.m. runs.

Another magazine recommended using a minimum of SPF 30, water resistant and broad-spectrum formula.
I actually have a couple of tubes of sunscreen in my bathroom that are SPF 70 and SPF 95. At what point do the numbers not make that much difference?

From what I read, SPF 30 products block about 97% of UVB rays and SPF 45 products block about 98% or the sun's rays. After that, well, the amount of ray's block is not that significantly more, the products just cost more.
There is NOTHING that blocks 100 Percent of the sun's rays.

One doctor quoted in a magazine (see if I put it that way I don't have to make a bunch of notes or asterisks or underlines) staid that SPF 30 products are find as long as people apply sunscreen as heavily (think of my shot glass) or as often (that 2 hour limit) as they should.

It is also recommended that you wear a hat or use sunscreen on your part or your entire scalp if your hair is thin.
Nice hat!

While some companies, such as Paul Mitchell Sun Shield Conditioning Spray, are making sprays for your hair, they don't replace the hat and the sunscreen.

Think you can't get cancer on your scalp, even when it is covered by hair? Think again.
It happened to me. I thought I had a wart on my head, but it turned out to be basal cell carcinoma and the doc took a big chunk out of the side of the head and stitched up the gap. No worries, he left all the important stuff inside, I think.

I am saving you all by not posting any picture here. But if you aren't putting sunscreen on your scalp and ears, well, just goggle "images of cancer on scalp" and it will make you sick enough to hopefully run and get sunscreen and cover you matter how greasy it makes your hair look.

Put your sunscreen on 20 minutes before you go out in the sun UNLESS it has titanium dioxide in it or zinc oxide.

I think maybe for for next triathlon I will apply zinc oxide as warpaint on my face. It even comes in colors - RED, WHITE and BLUE - that would cover me for Team Aquaphor and Triathlon Connection.

Here's the advice that has me in a conundrum - all the magazines said you can go 2 hours without reapplying if you are NOT sweating or in the water.

Well, I start sweating as soon as I lace up my running shoes, or as soon as I zip up my wetsuit.
I can get through a sprint triathlon in less than 2 hours, but I am not fast enough to make it through an Olympic Distance in that time. I have my first half Ironman on my calendar for October, and I KNOW it is going to take me 2 hours TIMES ??? to finish it.

So, do I take time during transition to reapply sunscreen? Will the other athletes in the transition area frown on me if I grab an aerosol bottle of sunscreen and start spraying?

Maybe I could get help?

Just when I thought I had the whole triathlon transition thing figured out, this sunscreen issue pops up.

I foresee my transition time suffering because my skin will not.

Does anyone have a sunscreen they love? That stays on? That keeps you from getting burned? What do you do in a triathlon to make sure your skin is staying safe from the sun's rays?

Let me know so I can train-n-tri without getting burned.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

I Now Measure My Swim in Miles

Swimming and I are finally becoming friends.
Even Open Water Swimming and I are becoming friends.

Starting in 2010, when I began to swim, my swim efforts have been logged in my training book by yards, until this month.
I measured my swim in 2011 by yards.
And I started out 2012 by measuring my swim by yards.

JUNE, I am swimming a new tune!
I noticed beginning this month I have been logging my swim in MILES.

A mile equals 5280 feet.

A mile equals 160,934.4 centimeters.
A mile equals 1609.34 meters.
A mile equals 1760 yards.

And today after my guy and I rode 30 miles on the Plain Wrap Ride, a local charity ride that raised money for The Kevin Unck Foundation (relief for injured cyclists), Cycling Connection's Kid's Bike Give-Away and Ride of Silence, a swim mile was entered into the calculation of how long it would take us to get to a restaurant to eat.

This is my usual - bacon and eggs, fruit instead of has browns and dry whole wheat toast, which I slather with strawberry jam.

We had just biked and we were hungry and what did we think of? Swimming.

Robert was in charge of the GPS while I drove. He was searching for a place for us to go eat breakfast.

"Uh, there is a Mimi's in .8 of a mile," he said. "The GPS says we will be there at 11:06." (For the record my digital clock in my SUV said 11:05.)
"I guess I better really drive," I said.
"You know, if I was swimming it would take us 28 minutes," he said.
"And me longer," I shot back.

Yes, the day before when we swam at Lake Perris we swam .8 miles together and it took us about 40 minutes. My knee was bothering me and we still had a mountain bike ride to do, so I was done. Robert said he wanted to make another lap. I said I would time him. He took off and 28 minutes later he was back.

Now if I could just learn to draft off of him.


FYI - we were eating about .4 swimming miles later.

Just going to train-n-tri.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Mixed Bag - Aquaphor and Lance

Today I got my "starter pack" of Team Aquaphor.
I was worried at first because other Team Aquaphor teammates had posted pictures of themselves on facebook in their Aquaphor tech tshirts and said, "Oh, this is me in my LARGE shirt," and I was thinking "Oh, Oh, I put small for mine." 

Thank you God for not making me have to worry too much because the FedEx guy came to the door with my shipment and I promptly tried mine on and it fit. PERFECTLY.
Yeah!!!! and double YEAH!!!!

So I am all happy sitting at home with my big box of Aquaphor samples and my awesome fitting Aquaphor tech tshirt and my new Aquaphor visor and I have finished editing my required pages of the slutty romance novel I am working on and I put a couple of items on eBay and I am waiting for my guy to get home from work so we can go swim (I know this is a really long run-on sentence...but my morning was a really long run-on morning).....

Then I come across this:

Oh, not so Yeah!

Gist is, the USADA is charging Lance with all the stuff he has been charged with before by them and the Federal Government, but this time the charges will keep him from competing in his pursuit of the Ironman World Championship Title.

Wait, that doesn't seem fair.
500 urine samples while competing in CYCLING and never proven guilty.

But now Lance is competing in Triathlon.

The USADA never could get Lance while he was competing in cycling, so now they are going to try to punish him while he is competing in Triathlon.

I say, leave the guy alone.....unless the USADA can find an issue with his blood tests NOW while he is competing in triathlon, they should just let it rest. And to WTC, who is the corporation that oversees Ironman, I say this - if Lance has not been charged or being investigated with doping while competing in Triathlon, then you should let him compete.
Macca says let him compete.
I agree!

Okay, I am off my soapbox now. I guess you know how I feel.
The rest of my day was GREAT!
I wore my fabulously fitting Aquaphor tech shirt to my Thursday evening Triathlon Connection Mountain Bike ride. Tonight there were only three of us. We just took it easy, which I was really grateful for. My knee was still sore from my laundry accident on Tuesday event.
This is what happened when I tried to carry a stack of 9 folded towels to a naked yelling teenage boy in a bathroom who just hopped out of the shower and finds there are no towels. I could not see where I was going and ran my leg into the corner of the fireplace bricks and went down on my face, towels strewn across the floor. Somehow the naked yelling teenager boy managed to find clothes and help me to the sofa and then put ice on my knee. I missed my Tuesday night road bike ride, but I did get waited one hand and foot by a dressed quiet teenage boy. Almost made the whole ordeal worth it.

Tonight's ride was great! The ride was nice! The company was fabulous! The food was wonderful! The wine was tasty!
Yeah! That's the kind of triathlon club mountain bike riding I do. You should come out and join us sometime.
Lance, you are more than welcome to join us. And we promise there will be no drug testing after the ride. I'll even give you some samples of Aquaphor.

Tomorrow is more train-n-tri.
I may be slow, but I go!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

First Olympic Distance Triathlon

Los Angeles Triathlon Series 3 (June 10, 2012)

I completed my first Olympic Distance Triathlon today.

I did compete at the Desert Triathlon earlier this year - but it has been pointed out to me that the Desert Tri WAS NOT an Olympic Distance, it was an International Distance, which really means the swim was shorter.

Today's triathlon was number 3 in the Championship Series. I competed in all three events. The first event in April started with a 500m swim, a 14.5 mile bike and a 3.1 mile run.
Short and sweet and I was happy just to make it through the open water swim.

After the first event, I looked at my times and set my goals for the next two triathlons.
My goals were to have a calm, enjoyable swim and think about my technique during the swim. I was NOT going to be focused on speed. I was going to focus on sighting so I would not swim zig-zaggy. I wanted to enjoy my swims and gain some open water swimming confidence while at the same time increasing my swimming endurance.

I also wanted to cut down my time in transition.

The second event in May was a 1000m swim, a 16.7 mile bike and a 5.5 mile run.
I DID have a calm, enjoyable swim. I DID focus on my technique and sighting and I did NOT worry about speed in the swim.
I also cut down my time in T1 and T2.

Today's event was a .93 mile (1500m) swim, a 24.5 mile bike and a 6.2 mile run.

I Did have a calm, enjoyable swim - after I had a tense, unenjoyable start. The gun went off and I forgot about my goal and I went out too fast, and I got out of breath and I tensed up. I actually took a short breather hanging on to the lifeguard's paddleboard. She asked me if I was going to be okay and I said yes, I just needed to slow down and enjoy myself. She laughed and I swam on, and on, and on and on. But the rest of my swim was calm and enjoyable.

I did even manage to cut some time off my T1 time, even though I pulled a SWIMBIKEMOM. In her blog a while ago, SWIMBIKEMOM wrote how during a triathlon she had to go to the bathroom, but there was no porta-potties around, so she just said down on some grass and went.

I thought of SWIMBIKEMOM today when in T1 I was sitting on my towel, having just pulled off my wetsuit, and I knew that it was now or having to pull my bike over to the side of the road somewhere. Good news is that I can multi-task - pee while sitting on a towel while putting on my socks and bike shoes.

FYI - If there had been one of these in transition I would have used it instead.

The rest of my race was uneventful as I plodded along on the bike and the run, hoping to make it through without re-injuring my knee. Good News - no stiffness or pain at all!

My goal now is to train to get stronger and increase my endurance. I am going to work on my swim speed, while staying calm and having fun.

I am the one with the pink cap.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Rest Day?

I opened up my workoutlog email Friday evening and found this:

Your PLANNED workouts:
Saturday, 06/09/2012
Day Off

Sunday, 06/10/2012
Swim 0.9 mi

Bike 24.0 mi

Run 6.1 m

Saturday - Day Off!

No running. No biking. No swimming. No strength training. No yoga.

It's hard to have a day off from training.

Especially when it's not REALLY a day off.

A REAL day off would look something like this -

Here's what my DAY OFF was like:
6 a.m. -get up and make coffee, then feed cats and dog.
Unload dishwasher and load pile of dishes in sink into dishwasher.

Fold a load of clean towels, put clothes from washing machine into dryer and start another load of towels.

It would have been easier and more fun to run a 5k - but NO, my coach said to take the DAY OFF!

8 a.m. - show up at the Riverside Bicycle Rodeo where I teamed up with fellow Riverside Bicycle Club member Marty and trained kids on proper arm signaling, how to properly stop at stop signs, and how to ride in a figure 8.

We made it simple for the kids - point the way you want to turn. We trained 41 kids and gave away 38 free helmets!

Not too hard, but not a day at the park. Oh wait, we were at a park...but I didn't sit down once.

Noon - Stopped by Trader Joe's and Von's and picked up groceries for my family. We did not have much left in the house. My list was long.


Buying the food was the easy part. Then I had to unload the bags from the car and put the stuff away. The putting away involved cleaning out the refrigerator to make room for the new stuff. The dog was really happy no one had eaten the piece of boneless chicken that was pushed all the way to the back bottom shelf.

I ended up with a bag full of leftover rice, a couple of old pears, some uneaten asparagus, stale bread, wilted (and slimy) lettuce and sorry looking strawberries no one was ever going to eat.

3 p.mish - I took the bag of food out to my composting bins, where I added the stuff in and turned two of the bins.
Turning involves using a pitchfork and a shovel and some back, arm and core muscles.

4:30 p.m. - grabbed a beer and the hose and watered some plants.

5:30 p.m. - Made enchiladas and popped them in oven, then continued watering plants. Cut back a couple of bushes.


6:30 p.m. - Ate dinner and cleaned dishes.

7:15 p.m. - packed triathlon bag for race tomorrow.

I am so looking forward to tomorrow. A .9 mile swim in a lake, a 24-mile hilly bike ride and a 6.2 mile hilly run.

It will be like a day off!