Tuesday, July 5, 2011

What a weekend.

Of fun, laughter, hard work and a little drama.

Saturday morning apart from being one of the hardest swim sessions I have ever done since doing swim squads as a child, it was quite possibly the most fulfilling too. I remember walking in - my usual 15mins early and looking at James as we were standing at the side of the pool and saying "So, what's on the agenda for this morning". To which he quite casually replied " 3 x 1500's". To say that I now have a bruise under my chin because my jaw hit the floor that hard is no word of a lie. Oh ok, well the bruise is, however the look of "What the" quickly followed by "Your kidding right" is no word of a lie. James simply smiled and said "Off you go. 3 x 100's warm up". I was quite possibly staring down the barrel of my first major "fail" in the water. I was scared. But I was here now, and it would look silly and gutless if I said I couldn't do it. So I dove in and got started on the warm up.

First up was a timed 1500m Fr/s. I gulped and thought "oh boy, here we go - this is number one. He wasn't telling a fib at all". So as I set off I tried to just stay focused on form. Not speed or time but my form the whole way. Nice long, slow strokes trying to milk each stroke for what it was worth. I wanted each stroke to have purpose as I have noticed that when I get tired I short change my stroke and start getting very choppy. So whenever I felt myself getting tired and ineffective in the water I went through my own little checklist and corrected that which started to slip. My first 1500m I came in at 23:50. I was happy. Tired, but happy.

Then it was time to put our paddles on. 15 x 100's leaving on 1:45. Five with paddles, 5 without, 5 with paddles. By the time I hit the last 5 with the paddles on - believe me I was in sheer survival mode. I am not even sure my Fr/s looked like Fr/s anymore. I could feel the paddles starting to slip as I was obviously not using them correctly. Nevermind, number 2 was done and I was hoping that with just over 20mins left of the session the third 1500m was not going to happen. WRONG.

The last 1500m's was another timed effort. Oh holy mother of Mary. I was speechless - yep - Barbie was well and truly lost for words. This was news worthy. I had no energy and so when I was asked to set off again I did so expecting a massive flunk in my time. This last set really made me have to did deep. Not just physically but mentally. I was having to pull harder than I ever have and was starting to get very tired. When Kate drew closer to my feet I was happy to let her go past and I hung on for dear life. As I got to the end I looked up at James and he said 23:20. Oh yeah, even though I felt like I was going to die and my heart palps were coming thick and fast I still managed to swim 30 secs faster. WooHoo. With the cool down at the end I swam a whopping 4.9km that morning.

Then Sarah, myself and Louise Mackinley (4 time World Ironman Champion) before heading off for our bike ride sat down for a yummy and well deserved breakfast and delicious Greek coffee.
Sarah, myself and Louise.

Going out for a ride with them was so much fun. The chit chat never really stopped unless we were doing our efforts. And even still there was still a bit of laughter going on. Louise was giving us really good pointers and was telling us great stories - thankyou so much Louise. And thankyou Sarah for another great training ride. You are smokin' the training young lady. With 56km under our belt on the ride it was time to go home and have a rest before heading back out to do a trail run. The trail run was adventurous. There were lots of dogs to be seen but the one's that stopped Sarah and I dead in our tracks were off lead and one was very confrontational. Sarah and I grabbed a stick - I was ready to climb up a tree and Sarah was definitely the braver one shooshing it away in a very brave voice. I on the other hand refused to make eye contact and got ready with my fight or flight response to head up a tree in a split second. Very funny now when I look back.

Sunday was a great day apart from a sore hammie. I have a little tear which should heal but am having 2 days rest at the moment and have had my bars put up on my bike again to take the load off of my hammie - thanks Dave so much doing that for me so quickly. Your the best. The ride was great - I went with Joey, Kristy, Sarah and Louise and enjoyed another morning of laughter and stories. Sorry for some of the stories Joey. Rather girl focused so I hope we didn't scar you too much.
Then yesterday I was treated to some ART therapy. I was seen by Nick from Spectrum Health and had my body moved and rubbed and bent into positions I never thought possible. He was able to feel the small tear and and he worked on releasing all my wonderfully tight muscles in my glutes and hammies. Seems my back and core are still an issue even with all my training. Nevermind. It will come good. I am positive.

So looking forward to my nice easy ride tomorrow - thats if the winds let up. There has been some gail force warnings issued. So, how is everyone?

Your hard work will be rewarded.

"The path to a dream is paved with sacrifices and lined with determination. And though it has many stumbling blocks along the way, and may go in more than one direction, it is travelled by belief and courage and conquered with a willingness to face challenges and take chances" Barbara Cage