Thursday, January 28, 2016

a decent swim and a podium dq

i pretty much suck at open water swimming.  i am pathetic and i think i have made that quite clear through previous posts.  i think i have had like three swims that i was happy with and this was one of them.  i have always promised myself that one day i would grow a pair of balls and get out there amongst it.  sadly this wasnt going to be one of those times.  i have swam at sorrento three or four times and have always enjoyed it.  i love the australia day swim as they get such a great crowd and the weather is always stinking hot.  quite a few people were swimming from squads so it had a real friendly atmosphere about it.  

i found cobie who swims in the same lane with me at squads.  while cobie was putting tubes of sunscreen all over herself i got my wetsuit on. the stingers have been extremely bad this year with people having to pull out of some events so i was feeling pretty good about having the wettie. they had various distances swimming and our all female 2.5k wave was one of the last to go.  the water was crystal clear and perfect temp.  we swam out to the start buoys and i was right behind cobie but then she moved forward and i stayed at the back of the pack because i am weak and have no balls.  
then we were off.  i started okay and didnt feel too bad but then i went through the normal this is too fucking hard, i am tired and why do i put myself through  this phase.   i kept going as usual and was just hoping to get to the first turn around pretty quick.  i got caught up with some people at the first buoy where we turn and head out to sea for a further 50 metres.  it was about here that i got stung a few times on the chin and face.  didnt hurt too much so i kept going.  the current kept pushing me further out so i had to constantly correct and head back in.  about half way along here i got  stung pretty bad.  one got me on the mouth and the lip and then another wrapped itself around my neck. that stung.  one of the guys on the surf skis saw me and came over and i had a little chat and relaxed for a bit and then went back to swimming. 

i got a little excited when i saw some buoys as i thought these were the turn around buoys to head back closer to shore and i actually turned before realising it was too soon and i had further to go.    so off i went in the right direction.  by this time my stings had settled down and i was feeling pretty good swimming.  i then began to notice i was passing people and was swimming past some of the male 2.5k swimmers who had started in the wave ahead of me.  i thought fuck they must be slow.

then i was at the turn around and not far to go until the final turn and straight back into shore.  i was using a pretty decent kick by now and going with the wind so it felt quick.  finally crawled out of the water and up the beach to cross the finish line.

got back to our spot and cobie had just come in ahead of me.  i was feeling the neck sting by now and cobie had been attacked in quite a few places.  we decided we wouldnt hang around as cobie was an invited vip to the wa swimming tent and i was her vip guest and we could have stayed for a feed.  we told a few people we saw on our way out that they could collect our medals but only as a joke.  it wasnt until later in the day i looked at the results and cobie had come in second in our age group and i was right behind her in third. and yes there was more than three swimmers.    mine doesnt count because of the wetsuit but considering i basically swam right through the whole pack and had a little rest on the way then i did okay.  this was a huge pb for me and just shows you what consistent swimming can do for you.  last year i swam 51.48 in a wetsuit but the conditions were a lot more lumpy.  this year i swam 45.59.  that is almost six minutes quicker and at 1.50 per/100m pace.  now if i could only get my shit together at the start !

Thursday, January 21, 2016

it is a new year and i am back

it has taken me a long time but i think i am back on track.  tomorrow could be different though and that is the struggle.  maintaining focus and consistency on the bad days.  

my christmas and new year was not great.  to be honest it basically sucked.  dad went into hospital on christmas day with a chest infection otherwise known as pneumonia.  and we all know what that means in older people.  that night we got a call from the hospital and the doctor was wanting to know what our wishes were regarding advanced health directives.  WTF.  meaning how far did we want them to go in order to save dad.  that freaked me out.  my sister and i had already decided we were going to pack up and go back to perth early.  i think it was boxing day that my mum decided to break her hip. and i mean that.  so both parents were in hospital.  the doctors told us that dad had a 50/50 chance but it was now no longer the chest infection but the fact that he wouldnt wake up.  long story short they took him off some drugs he should never have been on and he woke up and it was like old dad and he was back for the day.  i was very happy for my sister who was leaving that night to go back to the states and got to really talk to dad.  mum has since had surgery and been back to hospital twice. once for another fall and again to have her head stitched after falling again.  the woman is crazy.  dad has since settled down really well and is doing okay.

so now it is time again to focus on me and my sporting endeavours.  i did the hillaries sprint triathlon and always wanted to do a short race without fatigued ironman legs but this turned out badly anyway. the swim was okay although i was really tired and it was a real effort to finish.  onto the bike and while i wasnt super fast i was okay and it felt good.  however it was the run that really sucked.  i couldnt breathe and i could only run 200 metres before having to take a walk break.  it was really pitiful and by the time i got to the turnaround i realised that something was wrong and it was more than just not being fit enough.  as it turns out my sister had bought a nasty bug on the plane with her and had given it to me and the next few days i was pretty sick.  at least i knew what went wrong on the run and probably the swim.

so since then i have struggled for motivation and any type of consistency.  i have struggled with the distractions of work and aging parents.  the stress.  i know exercise is meant to be good for stress but it is hard to exercise when you are stressed.  like a catch 22 situation.  anyway my swimming has still remained constant but the running and bike are only now just coming together.  in many ways i have had to re-discover my love for triathlon.  and for training.  i am using every tool i know to make myself get out of bed and into training.  i have four days off and it is just going to be about the training.  tonight i have a hill repeats run.  tomorrow i have a brick session and then a swim session.  sunday i have a 4 hour bike ride followed by a visit to the gym.  at least to check out the place and see what is available.  monday i will go for a recovery ride and then some yoga later in the day.  tuesday i am doing the australia day 2.5k swim down at sorrento.  this will be alot of fun as most of the crew from swim squad are doing it.  surely i can find someone to draft off.  i will then run later in the day.  amongst all this i hope to finish tidying up the house and culling the amount of crap i have. i will also visit dad on saturday.  the last few weeks i have taken jingley cat to see him and then casey dog.

last weekend i was meant to ride saturday morning and then swim squad in the afternoon.  sunday i had the choice of doing the first of the five trail series runs or the rockingham sprint triathlon.  i signed up for the triathlon before the perth trail series races of which there are five.  i am hoping this is going to make me a stronger runner.  but i didnt do any of it and i am not quite sure why.  instead i went nowhere and saw no one.  may be that is what i needed.  time out.  it certainly feels like that is what i am looking for over the next four days.  time out to just worry about me.  not me and everyone else and work and not training and ned the missing cat and casey the old dog blah blah.  i am going to train and eat less. i am officially fat after i got on the scales the other day.  i have given away most of my chocolate stash from christmas and eaten most of the icecreams.  no more excuses.  i am also going to watch everest the movie and mad max fury road.  i have had that movie for months and instead of watching it i just have re-runs of csi on all the time.  i dont know why.  

anyway 14 weeks till ironman australia and if things are going to change they have to change now.