Monday, May 30, 2011

If I'm wrong I am right, no need to look no further.

After 3 trips back and forth form the East coast to the West coast, I am happy to announce the entire Farrooney clan is finally in CA. Bea was the last one to make the trip after 6 weeks at Nanny's. I knew the whole trip back for be exhausting: running the Brooklyn half, trying to see as many people as I could, sleeping on the floor of my former apartment (don't ask), going to Philly, and finally, shoving my 20lb dog into a bag and under the seat in front of me on the plane. It didn't help that the flight was delayed and we had turbulence for the duration. Bea was high so she didn't care so much. By hour 4 of the flight, my ass was killing me.
That's pretty much when I decided to change the course of my summer.
I'm not going to do the Ironman in July.
There are several reasons for this decision, which because I'm me, took me a while to finalize.
First, I can not deal with flying across the country again (I've done it 3 times since mid march). On top of the flying, there's then the driving to Lake Placid, which is close to no where. Dealing with getting my bike there, covering the 140.2 mile race, then doing all that traveling again.
I was really looking forward to doing this as a celebration of doing my first one with 2 very long time and dear friends of mine but the reality is, my heart isn't in it. I've done 3 other Ironmans, I know what it takes. When I told my friend Claudia who I was going to do this with, she understood and said "your heart needs to be in it or it's just a long painfu day without much of a silver lining".
Yup. It's a long painful day even if you're heart is in it. No getting around that. I have nothing to prove. This is the right decision for me now.
When I talked to Loren about this, she was a little relieved. We live in a new place with new adventures. While she would be totally supportive of me in this, she did say in the back of her mind she wasn't really looking forward to weekends where I couldn't do something because I have to go ride 80 miles. After that, all I kept hearing was "ride 80 miles...ride 80 miles..." who the hell wants to go ride 80 miles? Ok, I love cycling. I'd love to ride 80 miles. If that's all it was. I'm sure there's be a 15 mile run the day before or a 10 mile run right after. No thanks.
With that, I withdrew. And I am relieved.
This of course does not mean I will be totally sitting on my ass. Oh no.
We're planning on going up Rainier this summer (we were planning that anyway) and my focus has shifted to what I need to do to get ready for that.
Oh yea, and there's that sub 1:40 half I'm chasing. I'm looking for a race in the fall/winter. A race that does not require flying! So I'm taking suggestions.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Ahh Brooklyn, Brooklyn take me in

Ahhh The Brooklyn Half. I was curious how may times I've run this race so looked on the NYRR site, this was my 8th time. I think there are few races I've run as many times.
Since just missing hitting sub 1:40 in Asbury Park I figured I'm try again in Brooklyn. Well a lot has happened since that NJ race. For one, I moved across the country. Ok, that's enough of a distraction. I also ran Boston, which shouldn't be that big of a deal, I've come of off Boston and run great halfs. Truth is, the move was (obviously) huge. I have been running, but done no speed work and nothing over 9 miles. I knew it was a long shot but figured I was still going to try. Why not?
My friend Cenk also offered to pace me. I admit I was a little worried about that because I didn't want to go out too fast and was concerned I was biting off more than I could chew.
The morning of the race, it was 55 degrees. Perfect right? Sure, if the humidity wasn't 98%. The first almost 7 miles of this race is in Prospect Park. That weather made it like a rain forrest.
Cenk found me in my corral and I said I wanted to start conservatively. He was cool with that and then pick it open once we got out on to Ocean Parkway.
I pretty much knew right away this was not going to be my day. I've done several races in this park, I have a pretty good idea how I should feel at different parts of the park. I did not feel good.
At mile 4, I told Cenk to go. He said no, it was too soon to make the call. I said, no, I know. Not happening. So he ran with me for a few more minutes and went.
Going up the hill for the 2nd time, my friend HIlary caught me. I though, oh good, I'll run with Hilary, we run together all the time. She went passed me on the uphill and I caught her on the down hill. Well that didn't last. After that, I decided to phone it in and just get the milage in.
I will admit, it kinda sucked. I wasn't disappointed that I wasn't hitting my goal, it just sucked. It was humid. My ITB hurt outa nowhere and I just wanted to be done. 1:48 later, I was.
Oh well.
We all know we have sucky days.
It did make me seriously think about buckling down this fall and, oh, actually TRAINING for just a half. None of this half during marathon training, running them half assed. I want to run a really good half.
CA people, I'm taking suggestions for races.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Just eat it

As I've been ramping up everything for this Ironman, one thing that has really ramped up is my caloric intake. When I look at my week, it doesn't seem like a lot but I can feel my body shifting into the more mode which means the more food mode.
I am not complaining about this.
Let's look at the week shall we?
Run 22.4 miles
Bike 42.4 (this is from actual road bike riding. I'm guessing I also rode 10-15 miles of getting around town riding. While this might not seem like a ton, I ride a fixed gear bike around and every ride home ends with a hill at least a half mile long)
Swim 2.1 miles.

On Thurs, Loren and I took part in Ride your bike to work day. Or in my case, ride someone else to work. There's a ride that was started by some folks at Google that rides down that way several times a week, so we rode with them. While I was bitching last week about group rides, this ride was actually awesome. It was organized and everyone was very nice. The route which was new to us was very well marked. While I'm trying and looking for a job, I hope to do it once or twice a week then take the train back. Perhaps as I get in better shape, ride back as well (although the headwinds coming north can really suck). We're going to do it again tomorrow, taking a different route.

This week, I'm also heading back East to fetch my dog. I can't wait to have Bea out here with us! While I'm there, I'm going to run the Brooklyn Half. I had all these grand plans of going to this race and crushing 1:40. Well...we'll see. I did my longest post Boston run yesterday, a little over 9 miles. I have done no speedwork. I'm still going to go for it but I don't think it's a gimme. While I'm East, my focus will shift back to running since I won't have a bike and swimming might be tough logistically. I forgot how much juggling goes into Ironman training. Who's idea was this?

Monday, May 9, 2011

I'm heading for that golden gate

Getting settled in here on the West Coast. All of our stuff got here this week which was great. Sleeping on an air mattress is fine for a few nights, but for over a week kinda sucked. It was also a bit colder than expected so Loren and I were huddled up with the cats for most of the night. Poor cats. They're not gonna be too happy when the dog gets here.
I was really excited about the bikes showing up. Not so much to get out and go for some long riding (though I was looking forward to that) but mostly to be able to commute around the city on my beater. While I was very use to riding around NYC and all the ups and downs that comes with, San Francisco has a very different culture around commuting by bike. It's much much more common and accepted. Lots of bike lanes and bike racks and places with indoor/covered parking. It's a lovely way to get around this city. Except that hill longer than a half mile I have to ride up to get to my place, but I'm sure I'll get use to that.

It looks like this week marked the actual start of my Ironman training. It's about time. I'm not terrible concerned about my running since I just ran a marathon, I know I can let the running take a bit of a back seat. Honestly, I'm not crazy about that. I've spent the last few years really focusing on my running and I rather enjoy it. I do, however, need to work on the other 2 events. Luckily, I started doing triathlons over a decade ago. Swimming and cycling come back to me very quickly. So here's a run down of what my week looked like:
Tues- swim .9 miles. I planned on swimming a mile but miss counted my laps. Close enough. Honestly, I don't remember the last time I was in the pool.
Wed running 5 miles. I went with my friend Anna and Loren to the Sports Basement fun run. I feel like most of my group run days are behind me. I like to run at my pace and when/where I feel like it. But hey, I'm in a new city and don't know my way around running wise well yet and don't know a lot of runners so what the hell.
Friday swim 1 miles. I must say, I'm really glad I can just get in the pool and swim a mile without any trouble.
Sat run 5.62 miles. Loren and I tried out a new route before coffee club. 20 mile fixie ride. My friend Emily from coffee club wanted to take her bike out for the first time this spring. My fix bike was the only one ready to go. It was actually a really nice ride to the beach.
Sun ride 44 miles ride over the Golden Gate with Loren and Anna. We had planned on going with a local club (see my note about running groups, that's mild compared to how I feel about cycling groups. But again, new city, new people, but sadly, same douchebag attitude coming from other cyclists. That's one I know I won't go back to). The ride itself was beautiful and hilly. It'll take a little trial end error to learn the local routes, but that's also exciting.
This doesn't include what probably amounts to 15 or so miles of incidental riding. I'd say a pretty solid week to start. All my runs since Boston have been under 6 miles, I plan on changing that this week.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

People in motion

A lot has happened in the barely 2 weeks since Boston. A LOT I tells ya!
First, I got a cold. That doesn't really surprise me, I've gotten sick post marathon before. Ye olde immune system really takes a nose dive. Sitting on a sold out Megabus for 4 hours the day after doesn't help either.
Then Loren and I packed up everything and moved to SF. Ok, that was in the works for a while, but the actually happening of it was about a week after Boston. The week of Boston I spent packing up our place while Loren was in CA for work. She came home for the weekend and the mad packing push. I thank Day/Niquil for seeing me through these days. It's a big job to pack up 20+ years of life in one city and move it to the other side of the country. Not to mention 2 cats who had little interest in going anywhere.
Luckily, getting everything out of our place (movers. Young, strong men) was fairly drama free. Much to my surprise, flying with the cats was also fairly drama free. Everything from drugging them, to getting them in their carriers, through security and on the plane went off pretty much without a hitch. Of course Beans is still freaked out here in the new place. (just a side note: yes, my pets have facebook pages. With beans, I do not know who 140 of her 170 fans are. She's taken on a life of her own). Tobias is much better adjusted. He's acting like he's been here his whole life.
Now we're in our new place but our stuff is not. Living like we're camping with an airmatress, a camp towel, 1 take out container as our plate/bowl, and a pot borrowed from a neighbor. Our stuff should be here this week.
As for running, I'm totally ready to get back on the horse. It's also a great way to explore the new 'hood. Yesterday Loren and I did 4 miles before joining an old pal of mine for an established weekly coffee club meeting. That was great, I love the girls who meet and feel like there's an instant posse. The run itself was fairly hilly. That is my new challenge. I don't mind running hills, but some of this stuff up in here is crazy. This morning i went out on my own from another 4 in a different direction. I think exploring all of this will be fun.
I'm looking forward to getting my bikes out here as well. There's a group that bike commutes down to Google. Loren will be working not far from there as well. I'm hoping to hop on the rides once or twice a week as I train for the Ironman (oh yea, that thing). To start I'll ride down and train back and as I get in better shape, ride down and back. I'm so looking forward to that and just having my bike to get around the city.
Well, lots of new adventures to be had out here I'm sure, so stay tuned!