Tri Diva Reunion Event? Hell, yeah!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Workout for 8/26/07 to 9/1/07

Sunday - Hike
Monday - Legs
Tuesday - Taking the bike out in the freaking heat yay! - Shoulders
Wednesday - Running program - Back and Biceps
Thursday - Swim - Triceps and chest
Friday - Total abs!
Saturday - Rest

Monday, August 27, 2007

Breath of Fresh Air?

Alana and I went to the Cedar Ridge Preserve for our weekly hike yesterday. I noticed that the air was a bit thick, but I wasn't too concerned about it. Well, the poor air quality and the heat did a number with my asthma. Oy was definitely a workout and then some.

On a positive note, we took a new trail and it ended up being a nice challenge (wheezing aside...LOL) I'm definitely going to start shopping for hiking shoes. I have a sturdy pair of boots for winter hikes...but let's face it, winter in Texas is basically February. I need something low and light for the warmer months...
My plans this week include a couple of C25K sessions and bike rides. I'm bailing on spin class tonight because I'm crazy sore from yesterday's adventure hike, but I'll make up for it by bringing my road bike out of hibernation. I've been spinning all summer and my poor Trek has been sitting in the closet (on flats, no doubt).

No worries...I'll get it road-ready tonight and hit the park tomorrow after work.

Hope everyone has a great week!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Stormy Weather

Hey all :) Just wanted to say HI since I've been in Galena, IL all week and just got back yesterday. If you didn't see/hear/read about it in the news, the majority of Chicagoland is/was under water. We're all fine... luckily our house didn't flood. But my folks have a huge chunk of siding off the back of the house, torn off down to the insulation. Also, 3 of the 40+ yo pine trees that my grandfather planted when they first bought the house are now laying across the backyard, one of them narrowly missing going through the equally ancient garage. The powerlines are trapped beneath them, but are in tact. So they have power, but can't get anything done/cleared until ComEd comes to hoist the lines back into place. Luckily, no water in the house other than a trickle or two that came in through cracks in the wall.

ANYWAY... training-wise, not much to report. We didn't get out on the bikes last weekend because it rained, didn't get out today because of too much other stuff going on. Tomorrow we'll see if Busse Woods is under water. If not, we'll get on the bikes. My ankle is a little sore, but I think that's from 6 hours of driving (3 monday, 3 yesterday). Oh... and my swimmer's ear wasn't swimmer's ear afterall... No ear infection, I have TMJ issues (jaw joint) which manifests as such fun things as headaches, jaw pain, earaches, migraines, neck pain, toothaches, etc.... LUCKY ME.

Later!!! :)

Had to Squeeze it in

I actually got to squeeze in a 30 minute run on the treadmill today! HOOOORRRRAAAYYYY! I'm planning for next week in the hopes that my plans will work out this time! Hope everyone is having a great weekend.

Plan Your Nutrition Strategy to Avoid a Race-day Bike Bonk

By Nick White
Triathlete magazine

Keeping topped up

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that old adage is never truer than on race day. You burned most of the carbohydrate stores in your liver overnight, and breakfast is your last big chance to pack more carbohydrate into your body. From then on, it's a constant battle between using energy and replacing it.

The body runs on a seemingly flawed system that lets us burn energy faster than it can be replaced; you can easily burn 800 to 1,000 calories per hour, but you can only replace a portion of that. To maximize performance, it's crucial that you start with as much fuel as possible in your body, and that you consume enough calories during the event to maximize the replenishment capacity of the system.

Plan to get up a few hours before the start of the race so you can eat a large breakfast and give it time to digest. For most people, this means sitting down to your final pre-race meal three to four hours before the start. You obviously don't want to go to the swim start with food sitting in your stomach, so practice your race-day plan in training to know exactly what you'll be eating and how much digestion time you'll need to feel comfortable when you start racing.

Before shorter events, like sprint- and Olympic-distance triathlons, you can often get away with a smaller meal about two hours before the race. And for all race distances, it's a good idea to consume a bottle of carbohydrate-rich sports drink in the last hour before the start.

Before you know it, however, the gun goes off, the swim goes by in a blur and you're out of the water, ready to start hammering on the bike. And no matter what you did before the race, you're in a caloric deficit again. Some experts recommend taking 10 to 15 minutes on the bike to get adjusted before you start eating in order to avoid stomach problems, and if you have a finicky gut, this may well be the best tactic for you.

The problem with this approach, however, is that you're already low on calories, and another 10 to 15 minutes just puts you further behind. Thus, if you are able to handle calories immediately after the swim, you may want to double-up on calories at the beginning of the bike leg and then settle into your normal nutrition strategy. Specifically, instead of waiting for that first 20-minute timer to go off, take in your first bottle of sports drink plus a gel or a bar as soon as possible after exiting the water.

If you can handle it, downing a bottle of sports drink in the transition area lets you roll out onto the course a step ahead on nutrition and hydration and with two full water bottles on your bike. Similarly, eating a gel or bar in transition or in the first few minutes out on the course will help replenish energy burned during the swim and put you on the right track to keep the tank as full as possible.

Breaking it down

For most athletes, the bike leg is the easiest time to consume solid food. One good option is to break the food component of your race-day nutrition into more manageable 100- to 150-calorie chunks. That's the equivalent of a gel, half an energy bar or a large banana. Since most athletes find gels to be easier to eat -- and easier on the stomach during the run -- the bike is a good time to focus on solid food.

This is especially important in daylong events like an Ironman, because increasing the variety of foods in your nutrition strategy means you'll be more likely to keep eating frequently. Along with water, drinking a bottle of sports drink during the course of each hour will add about another 100 calories.

The long-course triathlete's plan boils down to this: Make sure you eat as large a breakfast as you can handle, then try to consume about 150 calories as soon as possible after you exit the water. Following that, settle into a normal feeding schedule of 100 to 150 food calories every 20 minutes. Combined with the sports drink, you'll be consuming about 400 to 550 calories per hour, which is about the maximum most people can handle.

It's not complicated, but inserting that carbohydrate-rich feeding before the bike is critical. It fills an important gap in the nutrition strategies of many athletes by replenishing some of the energy burned during the swim. This will lessen the caloric deficit most of your competition will be struggling with.

Nick White is a pro coach for Carmichael Training Systems, Inc. who races Ironman-distance triathlons and guides first-timers and experienced triathletes to their race-day goals. For more info about CTS or to sign up for our free newsletters, visit

Friday, August 24, 2007


It seems like a few of the Danskin Divas had crazy weeks, myself included. I am so glad the weekend is finally here! Work is busy again and triathlon training suffered. I plan to have a relaxing weekend and I promise to kick things up a notch on Sunday. My 30th Birthday Bash is a mere 3 weeks away. I am truly looking forward to partying it up in Vegas with my girls. I'd also like to drop another 5 lbs before then (hence the need to kick my own ass starting Sunday...LOL)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Donna - 8/23 Training Session

  • Barbell Bench Press - 95 lbs. 3 sets of 12
  • Dumbbell Chest Press - 25 lbs. 3 sets of 12
  • Dumbbell - Lateral raises 17.5 lbs. 3 sets of 12
  • Dumbbell - Flys - 25 lbs. 3 sets of 12
  • Leg press - 640 lbs. 3 sets of 12
  • Straight Legged Lunges 3 sets of 12

I did get in the pool on Wednesday for 30 minutes (Yay! Thats twice this week!!) . After my training session last night, my upper body was absolutely wiped. I couldn't believe how quickly I ran out of gas!

I should be thankful though, Jimmy spared me from the 4 point balance on the ball. LOL

Saturday morning I may forgo step class, as I'm contemplating one of the following...

a) Ride my bike to the gym and do 5K on the treadmill.... or
b) Take my bike to the gym, swim then ride -- then drive home.

I want to do it just to get a baseline for brick training.

And for fun, I booked my Vegas trip and spa package at Canyon Ranch. :)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Pressing forward

Hello, ladies. Like my good friend Lynn, I've been swamped, too. I'm also a little under the weather. I can't seem to sleep at night, no matter what I'm doing. Ugh. But I'm getting in good running workouts and my times are improving. I just need to get myself into the pool!

I hope you're all doing great today. :) I'm hanging in there and working hard, but it's hard to keep working when your body isn't getting the rest it needs. It makes training a little difficult, to say the least.

I'll check in soon!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Thinking about investing...

.... in a spin bike. I've wanted one at home for some time and this looks like a good deal and I know they are great spin bikes!

Johnny G Spin

Took the Plunge!

Okay, so I finally got my a$$ into the pool. Yay!

You know what? It really wasn't bad and I didn't feel half as clumsy as I thought I might. My goals were to keep moving and to concentrate on breathing on alternating sides of my stroke.

Anyone know anything about lap swimming etiquette when you are sharing a lane? I need to find some info. :)

I did it! :)

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Donna's Training Log - Week of 8/19

Things are going to be much better for me now, as I'm officially working until 3:30pm. This helps because whether or not I have to pick-up my daughter from work, I have time to do SOMETHING at the gym.

Sunday - Off
Monday - Swim (30 minutes - just keep swimming!)
Tuesday - Resistance Training Session & Cardio
Wednesday - Spin
Thursday - Resistance Training Session & Cardio
Friday - Off
Saturday - Step Aerobics

Day by Day

Sorry for my absenteeism, but volleyball season is 2 weeks in and I have been just trying to make sure I don't where myself down. I was a bit sick last week and lost my appetite. Which I guess should seem like a good thing! However, that didn't help my energy level any. I'm feeling much better now, have energy to get things done now. So right now my training log will be on a day by day basis as I may not get to hit the gym every day.

Today's workout was my weekly kick boxing class. I was really good and I left a puddle of me on the floor. I'll be pushing forward. Only 8 1/2 months left ladies! I'm getting excited.

Courtney's Training Log (8/19 - 8/25)

Hey Divas-

Things continue to go well on the training front. I'm feeling strong and focused these days and it's a beautiful thing. Work is starting to get busy again (corporate travel is only slow during the summer and holiday season), but I'm determined to channel the stress into my workouts. It seems like a much better solution than losing a chunk of hair like I did last year. <=No was my main motivation for getting a cute, graduated bob haircut. LOL

I'm not making any major changes to my workout schedule at this time. I'm hiking, spinning and running each week and the scale is moving in my favor again. I'll incorporate swimming in the late Fall and plan to start brick training in the new year.

8/19 - Hike/Pilates
8/20 - Spin Class/Plyos
8/21 - OFF DAY
8/22 - CT5K/Plyos
8/23 - OFF DAY
8/24 - CT5K
8/25 - Elliptical/Plyos

FYI, has triathlon training videos. Click Me!

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Training Session for 8/17

Got back to "it" today. Took it slow to start... amazing what a week away does!

Leg Press
1 set of 10 @640 lbs.
3 sets of 8 @730 lbs.

Step Ups
1 set of 10 @ 25 lbs.
3 sets of 8 @ 30 lbs.

Barbell Chest Press
4 sets of 8 @ 100 lbs.

Dumbell Chest Press
4 sets of 8 @ 27.5 lbs.

Leg Extensions
4 sets of 10 @ 100 lbs.

Plus 45 mins. of Cardio - Walking/Running intervals

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Guilt Trip: Nike Style

How did they know? I'm convinced this whole ad campaign was created for me. Thanks a lot, Nike. I'm going, I'm going!

Back at it after a hellish week

Hi, ladies. I'm finally making it back to the gym tonight. I have had an astonishingly busy week at work. Huge publication deadlines.

I'll be at the Y tonight, though, ready to lift, then run. I'm also going to start taking advantage of the large amounts of FIRM equipment I have at home when I need to get a weight training workout in and don't have time to make it to the gym.

I am going to start week 2 of C25K. I'm a pretty experienced runner, but I'd like to take it slow since I've not done a competitive 5K in a while, and I don't want soreness or injury to slow the training. No sense in pushing it and getting hurt. :)

You all are very inspirational! I can't wait until this tri!

Have a great Thursday! :)


Courtesy of my blogging "Men in Tights"

Now it's official, the Disco days are over. No sponsor could be found for Tailwind Sports, arguably the greatest team in the modern era, not even Red China could help Bruyneel's men. Now the boys will be getting familiar with the classifieds instead of the Treks as new jobs are required. Johan has stated he will retire, Hincapie is rumoured to be heading to Magenta-Town, and Whitey is off to Slipstream as one of the team's European directors. We may see the exit of one US team with another - Slipstream is building a nice little outfit this year with major signings reminiscent of when Abramovich came to Chelsea (Tinkoff tried but hasn't delivered).
Trek have also lost out, now looking for a new team - at least they haven't had the same history of BMC.

So thank you Tailwind/US Postal/ Discovery for all the joy you brought over the last years, you gave us such names as Boonen, Savodelli, Ekimov, Hincapie, Landis and of course Armstrong. Over the next couple of months don't be surprised to hear Barbara Mason belting from the Disco bus,"(Are you ready?) Yes, I'm ready; (Are you ready?) Yes, I'm ready..."

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Getting fine for the week ending 08/18/07

Sunday - Hike 1 hour

Monday - Legs Step up (bench) - 2 sets - 12 each side Side lunge - 2 sets - 12 each side Squat with dumbbell - 2 sets - 15 lbs, 15 reps Leg press with calf press (machine) - 2 sets - 100 lbs, 15 reps Sitting leg raise (machine) - 2 sets - 25 lbs, 15 reps Lying leg extension (machine) - 2 sets - 1) 12 lbs, 15 reps 2) 25 lbs, 15 reps Abductor/Adductor (machine) - 2 sets - 80 lbs, 15 reps

Tuesday - Running program - Shoulders Flye - 3 sets - 5 lbs, 20 reps Open/Close - 3 sets - 1) 5 lbs, 20 reps 2) 5 lbs, 20 reps 3) 8 lbs, 20 reps Overhead press - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 18 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps Shrugs - 3 sets - 1) 20 lbs, 20 reps 2) 20 lbs, 20 reps 3) 25 lbs, 15 reps One arm lateral raise - 3 sets - 1) 8 lbs, 20 reps each side 2) 8 lbs, 20 reps each side 3) 8 lbs, 12 reps each side Upright rows - 3 sets - 1) 8 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 15 reps

Wednesday - Back and Biceps Pull throughs - 3 sets - 15 lbs, 20 reps Hammer curls - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps Supermans - 3 sets - 20 reps Concentration curls - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps Seated row (machine) - 3 sets - 1) 25 lbs, 20 reps 2) 25 lbs, 15 reps 3) 37.5 lbs, 15 reps Sqaut using balance ball with bicep curl - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps Pull down front (machine) - 3 sets - 1) 25 lbs, 20 reps 2) 25 lbs, 15 reps 3) 37.5 lbs, 15 reps

Thursday - Triceps and chest Pull down (machine) - 3 sets - 25 lbs, 20 reps Chest press - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps Bench dips - 3 sets - 15 reps Pushups - 3 sets - 12 reps Lying dumbbell extensions - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps Dumbbell kickbacks - 3 sets - 1) 10 lbs, 20 reps 2) 10 lbs, 15 reps 3) 10 lbs, 12 reps

Friday - Running program - Total ab workout - I can't freakin' wait!

Saturday - Running program

Good Stuff

Strike While the Iron Is Hot:
7 Proven Steps to Overcome Procrastination

By Dr. Annette Colby, RD or
Copyright 2007, Dr. Annette Colby, all rights reserved.

“I know what I need to do, but I am unable to get started.” Who among us hasn’t been stuck in this scenario before? Momentum is a powerful force but inertia can be more powerful. We know what to do, but we don’t put knowledge into action. The result is the frustration of procrastination and remaining stuck in your current reality even though you do want change.

Inside, it seems one part wants to get started and achieve success. Yet another part wants to stop, give up, or take it easy. An inner tug of war ensues between these two parts. Which side will win? Achieving success depends on not allowing these two parts to maintain a perpetual battle and keep you at a stalemate. Success is realized when you become aware of these two opposing sides and deal with them in productive manner. You always have the choice of which side to nurture, cultivate, and strengthen.

A Native American elder once described his own inner struggles in this manner: “Inside of me there are two dogs. One of the dogs is mean and evil. The other dog is good. The mean dog fights the good dog all the time.” When asked which dog wins he reflected for a moment and replied, “The one I feed the most.”

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Courtney's Training Log (8/12 - 8/18)

I'm glad to be starting a new training week tomorrow. This week has been a struggle! AF paid me a visit and I had a general "icky" feeling for several days. I basically wanted to sleep the week away, but I pushed through my workouts. Hooray for Courtney! Less than 9 months until the triathlon...

8/12 - Nature Center Hike
8/13 - OFF DAY
8/14 - CT5K
8/15 - Spin class/Plyos
8/16 - OFF DAY
8/17 - CT5K
8/18 - CT5K

Hope everyone has a great weekend! Here's a motivating quote for my fellow tri divas:

"Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day; while failure is simply a few errors in judgment, repeated every day."

P.S. I found the Key Lime LaraBar...heaven.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Save Me a Seat on that Short Bus,
Would ya?

Got my implants yesterday.... 6 dental implants. I don't have any working out in my future for the next 10 days.

I can't even walk a straight line across my kitchen floor with the drugs I'm on.

How's that for a slug? Don't feel bad.

OH, and from H-town, humid and hot is the only way we roll in summer, where it is a humid 98 degrees).

Strap on my helmet and put me on the short bus...

Ok... You all are making me feel like such a slacker. I water ran yesterday for about 40 minutes yesterday... I can't swim because I have, go figure, swimmer's ear (outer ear infection basically). It's still bothering me :( But water running felt really good and it's a good substitute for real running since the girls don't like that idea yet. I don't own a decent sports bra anymore since I gained weight and had to get rid of all my old ones...

ANYWAY.... I know the weather is no excuse for not working out... I really need to get cracking. Please pray for a midwest cool down so we can all get out there and MOVE! :)

Hugs to all :)

PS -- special thanks to Donna for putting my ugly mug up so quickly :) YOU ROCK!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Why walk when you can run?

I'm still trying to find the love for running. Does anyone manufacture the beloved "runner's high" that folks just rave about? If so, I'd like to place an order...preferably fruit punch flavored, if they have it. :p

Tonight will start another week of the CT5K program. I'm determined to finish the entire plan...mainly so I can wear this t-shirt and not be a poser...

In nutrition news, I think I found a bar that I love even more than Luna. Some of you may already be hip to Larabars, but I'm going to brag on them anyway. I've seen them for awhile and never picked one up. I guess the whole raw food thing made me cautious. Let's face it...we've all experimented with energy bars and some of them have left us scarred for life. Ugh...Soy Joy comes to mind.

Anyway, a friend of mine wouldn't shut up about the greatness that is Larabar, so I picked up the Apple Pie version yesterday. The ingredient list: Dates, walnuts, unsweetened apples, almonds, raisins and cinnamon. What? No strange chemicals with funky names that I can't pronounce? I opened the wrapper and prepared myself for the worst. I almost held my nose before taking a bite but decided that was inappropriate behavior for an almost 30 diva like myself. The verdict? I am in love! Oh my goodness...what a great bar! It truly does taste like apple pie. It was satisfyingly sweet (but not enough to upset my stomach if consumed during physical activity). I went back to the store and purchased cherry pie, ginger snap and banana cookie for the next round of tests.

Nutrition Facts for the Apple Pie Larabar
Calories 180
Fat 10g (seems high, but it's good fat from the nuts)
Carbs 23g
Fiber 4g

Check out for more information. I'm now on a mission to find the *new* Key Lime flavor.

Hope everyone has a great day!

A Day That Changed Us...

I certainly don't want to alienate any of the newest members of team tri-diva, but I went back to the ol' archives and found the recount of our first tri. I get excited re-reading it!

The Birth of Team "Tri Divas"
Courtney, Alana and I met through Weight Watchers. I suppose by now, it’s over 7 years ago. Each of us have weight-loss goals we have been working towards obtaining, but since losing weight was not our only goal, we wanted to be fit as well, we all started doing different types of physically demanding athletics. Our level of activity was something that we all had in common.

I decided, when my weight loss seemed to slow tremendously, that I needed a different challenge to focus on. I decided on the Danskin Triathlon. This was something even a beginner, who could dedicate at least 6 weeks of training time, could complete – or so the write up implied.

I mentioned the event to Courtney. She thought it was a terrific idea. She and her roommate Alana both decided to dedicate themselves to doing it. Well, as things would turnout, life got in the way. Since training obviously was not a priority for all of us, January became February, and February became March. Time was escaping us, and tensions were high. No one wanted to say that they couldn’t do it.

Courtney came up with the idea for the relay team. I didn’t even know you could do it as a relay team. This would be the perfect answer for us. It would give us a great first-time experience, and allow us to see what it was all about.

So it was decided. The next day, Courtney created and registered, officially, team Tri-Divas. There was no getting out of it now. We were committed.

The Day We’d Been Waiting For...
After getting to bed later than we hoped on Saturday night, we woke at 4:30 am to set-off on our challenge. I was really nervous, as was Courtney and Alana.

We nibbled on some protein bars, just to get something in our stomachs, and headed towards the course. By the time we parked, shuttled, and got to the transition area, there was already a flurry of activity. The sun was just coming up over the lake, and the waters looked calm. It was beautiful at 72 degrees with a slight breeze. We dropped our bags in the transition area and checked out the scene.

I really thought I would stick out like a sore thumb, given my size. Not the case at all. There were women who are larger, smaller, fit and less fit; all kinds were there. Really, the only really "triathlete" looking women were the Elite class, who compete in these things for a living. So, suffice it to say, I became more comfortable with my body, in less time than I thought I would.

Eventually the waves of participants were being launched. We were the second to last wave to go (out of 25 waves, I think). Each wave had 100 women in it, so the water filled with swimmers quickly. The first swimmer exited the water, completing her .75k in about 17 minutes. The support shown by the spectators was so amazing. As mothers finished the swim leg, an exited the lake, their children were rooting them on and their husbands were professing their love, running along side them up the hill to the transition area. When the team Teen Survivors (teenagers surviving breast cancer) started exiting the water I got the chills. Here I was taking on this challenge. Knowing what it meant to me, I couldn’t begin to fathom how they were feeling that moment.

I couldn't watch Alana start the swim, as I had to go get my bike setup. I had yet to pump my tires and get my gear together at the bike rack. My nerves were really bad by this time. They had blocked entry to the transition area (where my bike was) until 8:15, so I couldn't get back in. With Alana launching at 8:25, I was concerned I wasn't going to be ready to make the transition.

Alana completed the swim in less than 40 minutes. A totally amazing feat, as the winds had picked up tremendously and made the water choppy, to the point that it was white-capping. Couple that with the fact she had never swam in open water, let alone in this type of event! As I saw her come into the transition area, my adrenaline was pumping. I was so motivated by her accomplishment.

We exchanged the chip, and I was on my way. I was so worried I was going to do something stupid, like not being able to get clicked into my pedals, while hundreds of people were watching. Thankfully nothing like that happened. Although after I made the first turn from the start line, my athletic bra (a full body tank) rolled up over my stomach and took my jersey with it. An awful site for the spectators, oh well! Needless to say, I noticed the breeze and fixed it. Just my luck to the most loathed part of my body hanging out for the world to see. Ugh!

This ride was the biggest challenge of all my rides. If the high winds weren't coming right at me, they were moving across me. It was difficult to keep a slow, steady pace when folks were passing me right and left. I knew that in order to finish, that was what I was going to have to do, use my energy wisely and conservatively.

While huffing and puffing up a hill, I kept my sense of humor. A volunteer, riding a mountain bike with a fully-loaded backpack of repair gear, seemed to pass me effortlessly. I yelled to him, between breaths, “Do you think you make that look a little more difficult? Just look like you’re struggling, for me? Okay?” He laughed and said while he pointed to the backpack, “but I have all this!” I just shook my head and laughed. It actually helped to get my mind off the current incline I was challenging.

After about 4 or 5 miles into the course, I started passing folks who had previously passed me. Conserving my energy was now paying off, and that started to build my confidence. I had a few moments where I just knew I had used the gears precisely as I should have. It was as if, for a moment, I was an expert rider. I was able to make excellent use of the downhill momentum. It felt so good to get it right. I really felt like an athlete.

At the half-way point, the watering station was asking, "Drink it, or wear it!?" I chose to wear it. The volunteer drenched my chest with a cup filled with cold water. It was so refreshing. I felt amazingly reenergized. I knew at this point I had two large hills ahead of me, before I got to the last, and largest hill of them all. These next two hills had me going speeds of over 30 mph on my practice rides. I knew I would need to maneuver them conservatively in order to have anything left for the big one.

Going down the side of the second of the two, I was now staring at the largest, and last, hill in front of me. I heard the cheers of the 5Kr's, running along the perimeter of the park, rooting me on. I wanted to root for them in return, but I couldn't yell back as I was out of breath, so I left them with a thumbs-up. I was stroking as hard as I could, wishing I could keep my breathing as steady as I was managing to keep cadence. The hill was so steep; I could feel my quads quivering with every stroke. A volunteer began rooting me on, "You're almost there... keep that angry rhythm going!" I was angry and it was obvious. This hill beat me each time in practice runs. I didn't want to get off the bike and walk it. I was grunting and cursing the wind with every pump my legs made. 15 to 20 feet from the top of the hill I had to get off and walk. I was mad, but not nearly as defeated I had felt during my practice rides, because this was the furthest up the hill I had ever made it, and I realized that immediately. Even though I felt that given the challenge the wind presented, this would be my worst time. I was okay with it -- I knew it was the hardest of my previous runs there.

While walking up the hill there was another woman walking feeling about as bad as I was. I yelled to her, “Come on, let’s ride!” We both got on and got back to the business of riding. We made the second-to-last turn into the park together, and were now on what starts out as a flat road. My legs recovered a bit and I was on my way, picking up speed. I felt bad leaving her behind, but knew we helped each other get going again. I made the final turn, and could see the finish line on the top of what is the most deceiving hill of them all. It doesn't look like much, but after doing rest of the course, this hill may as well be as large as the tallest and steepest hill of the course.

I was determined to not get off my bike, as I had in all my practice runs when I’d walk back to my car. Not today, damn it! I was riding right to the dismount line. I grit my teeth and starting grunting again. I came in like I meant it! I got to the dismount line and crossed the finish line, completing the 20k in 1:09. I was crying, trying to drink water and gasping for breath all at the same time. Later I would find out that 1:09 was my best time on the course ever – improving my time by over 20 minutes from my last ride!

Courtney and Alana came running up to me to see if I was okay and to make the transition – good thing too, because I wasn’t even thinking about the chip at that point! I couldn't even talk. I raised my leg and motioned to them to take the timing chip. I told them, "Go, go, go!!!" After they made sure I was okay, they were on their way. As I walked to my bike back to the rack, people were rooting for me, "Good job!" "Great finish!" It felt so good.

Still crying because I couldn’t believe that I finished, I got back my spot, racked my bike and started to recover. Next to my rack sat this seventy-something year old woman. She asked me if I was okay. I told her I was fine, just that I was so happy to have done it. She told me that she had just completed the 5K portion of the tri with her two daughters who were about my age. To top it off, she was a breast cancer survivor. She told me her story. I told her, she was my hero. They had just finished in 2:12. I shared with her our team’s story, how we met, how much weight we lost, and she said, “Now don’t make me cry!” We settled on being each other’s hero for the day.

The sun was getting hotter and hotter and the storm was getting closer to the lake. I drank some water, ate and apple, and recovered. Then I went to find Courtney and Alana on the 5K course. They were moving fast, because I went to one of the checkpoints, where I thought for sure they’d turn up, and they were no where to be found. I knew that Courtney was feeling like she had less of a challenge than Alana and I had, simply because she had done 5K’s before. But the wind, which had picked up even more by now, and the terrain presented just as much of a challenge for her as it did for us. I knew she would take on the challenge, in the exact way she takes on everything! I walked the course backwards from the finish to find them, and I did. They were just coming up the last big hill. We walked the last 1/4 mile together. The closer we got to the finish line, the more cheers were heard from the spectators. They announced our team name, and our individual names, and awarded us medals around our neck. Never did a piece of metal mean so much.

On the back of the medal is an inscription, "The woman who starts the race is not the same woman who finishes the race.", better and truer words could not have been inscribed in its place.

I am not the same woman I was before. I believe fully, we are stronger than we feel, and braver than we ever could imagine we would be. Do not ever underestimate the power of belief.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Hi :)

Hello gals :) I'm trying hard to get the hang of this thing... I can't access blogs at work, unfortunately... ANYWAY... Once I figure out what I'm doing I'll post more... Including a pic :)

Jacque's workout 08/06/07

I jumped back into full-out train mode last night. (I'm getting over mono and some other awesome health problems ... blah!)

I did a full upper body workout, and I'm hurting today, but I'm happy about it. It reminds me that I'm alive and active, and I've not felt that for a while!

Tonight I will run at the Y (it's oppressively hot and humid here) and do a lot of stretching. My lower back's going to be something I have to take very good care of during this training.

I hope you're all having a great Tuesday! I look forward to getting to know all of you. :)

Food Review: Bell Plantation's PB2

Let's just say, that if you are a peanut butter lover, you will love PB2. PB2 is simply peanuts that have had the majority of oil pressed out of them and are then pulverized to a powder consistency. Compared to regular "healthy" peanut butter it has 2/3's fewer calories and fat AND it tastes fantastic.

I use this in vanilla or chocolate protein shakes, I've added it to chocolate pudding, I sprinkle it on sliced bananas, I mix a tiny bit of water with it to make it the consistency of processed peanut butter to make sandwiches or eat with apples. I also like a couple tablespoons mixed with cottage cheese and a packet of Splenda (recipe courtesy of for my evening protein snack. It is really great stuff.

Every person I've shared it with is now hooked! Buy it here at Bell Plantation.

Calories 54.138
Calories from fat 25.44
Total Fat 2.84g
Saturated Fat .55g
Cholesterol 0g
Sodium 94.4mg
Carbs 3.7g
Dietary Fiber .3g
Sugars 1g
Protein 4.3g

Check out this great reference on the nutritional value of peanuts from the Peanut Institute, a non-profit organization.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Crazy Legs...

I am truly exhausted! Run workout on Saturday, hike on Sunday and spin class today.

My legs have not only decided to take some time off, I think they're staging a coup. can say I'm looking forward to my scheduled off day tomorrow. Wednesday will be back to the track for more run fun.

New product alert...

I was in Central Market over the weekend and picked up a few Luna Tea Cakes. I've been hearing good reviews from gym and work folks, so I decided to join in the fun. I haven't tried them yet, but I'll post a little review later. I'm always looking for new snacks that are more interesting than raw fruits/veggies (which I still eat on a daily basis!), but a tad bit healthier than a pop tart. LOL

Well, it's time for me to get some sleep. 5am seems to arrive very quickly.

Hope everyone is having a great week!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Workouts 8/5 to 8/11

I'll be setting goals and getting them posted. In the mean time, here is my workout schedule for the week.

8/5: Punch Class (kickboxing)
8/6: Chest and Triceps
8/7: Cardio-Run
8/8: Legs
8/9: Cardio - Run
8/10: Back and Biceps
8/11: Off

Just Keep Swimming...

I finally decided on a suit. My current one definitely needs to be retired, so in with the new.

Speedo Quantum Splice Flyback Top/Boy Shorts

Lana's Workout for 08-05 to 08-11

08/05 - Hiking
08/06 - Shoulders - Spin Class
08/07 - Legs
08/08 - Back and Biceps - Running program
08/09 - Triceps and Chest
08/10 - Off
08/11 - Running program

I am going to try to throw in some swimming this week on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday.

Will post detailed weight workouts later

Have a good week everyone!

Donna - Training Log - 8/5 - 8/11

8/5 - Swim Workout
8/6 - Lunchtime Cardio - 30 mins. running intervals
8/7 - Resistance Training Session & 40 mins. waling
8/8 - Spin
8/9 - Off: Having dental surgery! 6 implants
8/10 - Off (Depends on recovery... might swim)
8/11 - Resistance Training Session & 40 mins. walking

I have some classwork to get done today, but then I'm off to the pool. I got my gear and I'm ready to go!

The biggest challenge this week will be my implants. I hope the recovery is quick!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Courtney's Training Log (8/5 - 8/11)

Last week's schedule worked well for me and I survived Week 1 of the Couch-to-5K (CT5K) plan. It may not seem like a big deal to Super Runners of the Universe, but I'll let you in on a little secret: I despise running. I've started various plans over the years and always stepped away after a few weeks. I'm not doing the plan to become a runner. I'm a cyclist and that's ok. I see the run as a challenge and I plan to win...and then never run again. LOL

8/05 - Nature Center Hike (2.5 miles)
8/06 - Spin class
8/07 - OFF DAY
8/08 - CT5K/Plyos
8/09 - Kickboxing/Plyos
8/10 - OFF DAY
8/11 - CT5K/Pilates

That's the plan for the coming week. Having this blog has really helped me recommit to my workouts and stay motivated!

Hope everyone has a great week...

Friday, August 3, 2007

Thursday Session

2 words: Today sucked.

I had a 1/2 training session and 1/2 consult (weigh& measure day)

Weight: Same.
Inches: Lost 1/2" on each thigh*

*Didn't lose any muscle mass this month, so that's a plus.

My legs are suffering from DOMS from the combination of legs on Tuesday, then spin on Thursday. It takes a lot to get my legs, but even this morning they still burn!

8/2 - 1/2 Training session:
4 sets of 8 reps - Wide grip lateral pull-down at 100 lbs.
4 sets of 8 reps - Cable row at 90 lbs.
4 sets of 8 reps - Shoulder press at 60 lbs.
3 sets of 45 seconds - 4 point kneeling on balance ball
3 sets of 45 seconds - 2 point kneeling on balance ball (See picture)

2 point kneeling
(Oh, and this is NOT me.)

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Hamhock Legs?

I have a training session tonight, but my legs are like rubber bands today. It takes a lot to make my legs sore, but after Tuesday's session and spin last night (we focused on quads and hams), I can barely walk today -- muscles need recovery! Hopefully we'll do just core, back, chest or shoulders tonight. I swear my hamstring felt hard, like a big ol' hamhock!

My swim stuff shipped... better warn 24 there's a tidal wave on the horizon. :)

I'm posting my weights, because half the time I can't remember -- but that's what the trainer is for! :) Just a comment on the leg press weights. They are heavy -- but here's the deal... if anyone wants to gain weight, keep active and weigh in at 347 lbs, then around with that weight for 15 years, you too would have legs that strong! I knew tap dancing at 300+ lbs. would pay off one day. :)

The sad news is that eventually my strength building will level out. Because of the WLS, my body can only sustain so much growth because it is near impossible to maintain an anabolic state, conducive to muscle growth, because of my calorie restriction. Right now I am building a little muscle, but my strides are mostly neuromuscular, meaning my muscles have the ability, but essentially have to learn to engage.

7/31 Training Session:
4 sets of 8 reps - Leg Press 730 lbs. (Pushin' w/the big boys!)
4 sets of 8 reps - Leg Extensions 70 lbs.
4 sets of 8 reps - ball squats w/30 lb. dumbbells
4 sets of 8 reps - chest press 70 lbs.
4 sets of 8 reps - fly press 50 lbs.
4 sets of 8 reps - cable press triceps 70 lbs.
4 sets of 8 reps - cable-pull biceps 50 lbs.

Traditionally I've always done lighter weight, more reps and fewer sets. However in the last 4 weeks we changed it up, going to failure between 6 to 8 reps but more sets. As soon as we made that one change, the scale started moving again. How strange is that!?!

I get a totally different wiped out feeling after training this way-- like I'm the walking dead, but really want to do more! I find myself grunting without thinking about it. Someone is going to think a wild boar is loose in the gym one day!

Great training girls -- keep it up! :) I like having a place to check-in... this is cool!

On a blog related note, do you all have the ability to veiw the "Layout" of the blog? I added a new object for each of us on the right -- just edit it!

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Triathlon Conversion Calculators

I figured geeky toys might make us a little more motivated! Hope everyone is having a great week.

Triathlon Conversion Calculators
Triathlon Race Calculator/Time Management Tool

Alana's Training Log (7/29 - 8/4)

7/29 - Running program/Pilates

7/30 -Weight Training (Back & Biceps)/Spin class
- Pull through - 15 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- 1/2 Bicep curl standing - 10 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Machine lat pulldown (front) - 37 lbs - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Machine row - 25 lbs - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Hammer curls standing - 5 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Concentration curls standing using tall bench - 5 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Supermans - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- 50 crunches

7/31 - Weight training (Legs)
- Machine leg press with calf press - 100 lbs - 2 sets, 20 reps each
- Machine seated leg extensions - 25 lbs - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Machine hamstring curl - 1 set at 12.5 lbs, 15 reps - 1 set at 25 lbs, 15 reps
- Abductor/adductor machine - 60lbs - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Mountain Climbers - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Pop squats - 2 sets, 15 reps each

8/01- Off Day

8/02 - Running plan/Weight Training (Triceps & Chest)
- Pushups - 2 sets, 10-15 reps each
- Bench dips - 2 sets, 12 reps each
- Laying tricep extension - 10 lb weights -2 sets, 15 reps each
- Machine pushdown - 25 lbs - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Kickbacks - 5 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Dumbell bench press - 10 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each

8/03 - Weight training (shoulders)
- Press - 10 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Shrugs - 20 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Side lateral raise followed by a front raise - 5 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Open/Close - 10 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each
- Upright rows - 10 lb weights - 2 sets, 15 reps each

8/04 - Running plan/Pilates