Sunday, April 7, 2013

Tonsillectomy Tuesday

Tonsillectomy = not awesome. Gross details ahead but I'll spare you from the pictures.

Day 1: 7:30am checkin. First iv line blown and it took a while to find another. Tonsils were taken out with a machete. Recovery room was horrible pain and they wouldn't let me lay on my side. I felt like puking, but being in so much pain, I had to keep the barf down with sheer force. Second recovery area was much more pleasant. 2 popsicles. 1 lap walking around the track. Was cleared for departure.

Day 2: Night one was horrible. Up every 30-40min. Car alarm in the alley didn't help the cause. Day 2 wasn't bad though. I thought I was home free. I {slowly} ate some mac and cheese! Was trying to go 6 hours between pain meds. No such luck.

Day 3: Death by sleeping. Slept more, set my alarm for 4 hour increments to make sure to wake up for the pain meds. Helped. Woke up and felt like a monster was sleeping in my throat and I woke him up. Ate chicken broth, water, apple juice.
google image search is awesome.
exactly how i feel
Day 4: Woke up in tears. I now dread sleeping. Daytime is much easier. Pain meds are very cyclical. Take it, feel crappy for 20 min, feel awesome at 45 min, good for 2 hours, and then pray that the rest of the time up to 4 hours hurries by because I'm in so much pain. Eating happens in the afternoon hours. Sherbet, chicken broth, ice chips, pudding.

Day 5: Missed my am pain meds and woke up alone {Kyle went to look at cars} and in horrible pain. Mornings bring dagger pain and a stiff neck. Once the medication gets back into my system things get better. Took a ride in Kyle's new {1968} VW Beetle! Ate angel hair pasta and scrambled eggs, more pudding, hard-boiled egg whites.

i can't believe we own a bug!
Day 6: Alarms worked, but still woke up with the worst pain yet. Stayed in bed longer than usual. Accomplished my goals of taking a shower and cleaning the bathroom/bedroom. More pasta and mashed potatoes. Surviving. However, I think the scabs are starting to fall off. The shedding is more disgusting more than painful; but I've learned to expect that the pain will come.

With all this lazing around, I really need to start stretching and rolling. My legs were sore from Oceanside until Wednesday, but that was the least of my pain concerns. I think I actually recovered quicker than usual. I ran as fast as I could on the day, and while it wasn't fast or "hard" it was still time spent pounding on cement. Heel isn't hurting nearly as bad, so I'm optimistic for training again, once my throat allows.
i know how you feel buddy; okay maybe not.
I watched Paris-Roubaix today. Great race. I don't think my heart rate has been that high since the surgery! Go Fabian!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

2013 Oceanside 70.3

leisure pace. trying to smile + stay positive.
So after 5 years of living in So Cal I finally raced Oceanside half ironman. It's a hometown race and it's pegged as one of those races where you freeze at. Okay, so after the Panama 70.3 humidity disaster of last year, sign me up! For racing, I embrace the cold! I know my body doesn't perform well in the heat and sun, so I begged for rain and cloud cover and freezing ocean temps. I swim in the cove {almost} year round and while, yeah, it's freezing, I'm used to it. And I know most of my competitors aren't.

You can't always get what you want.

After a crappy night sleep experiencing some wicked lower back pain from standing at the expo for the past 2 days and the Crohn's flare, race morning came early. Kyle and I picked up Noko at 4:30am and we made the trek up to north county. Managed to scarf down an entire bowl of Malt-O-Meal {with heaping spoonfuls of brown sugar} and I made sure to drink plenty of fluids on the drive up. Kyle dropped us off at T2 and we situated our run stuff and rode the bikes over to T1. Got set up and then saw Kyle where we watched the Pro's swim through the harbor so I could take a better look at the overview of the buoys. Put myself into the {cattle} corral and waited until our group was the next released into the {62 degree WARM, what?!} water.

okay! made it to the start liine. ready for the long day ahead.
Swim: 24:16, 1st 30-34 AG, fastest amateur female, 5th overall
Wave 17 {lucky number, lucky swim} 7:30am, 50 min after the pro's and the gun goes off, and there we go. It was a pretty uneventful swim. Goggles performed beautifully {no fogging/cracking issues}. I drafted for a while, then I took the lead for a while, then the girl started tapping my feet like we were pacelining, so I flipped over, adjusted a goggle, took a few backstrokes, let her pass me and I stayed on her side for a while. I didn't like her line going into the turnaround so I took a shorter line. Ended up emerging after the turn pretty close to her so I started drafting again. Saw the husband at his post, I waved and yelled "Hi!" as I knew he'd get a chuckle from that. I gave one final push to try and drop the girl, but knew it was pointless, so I let up and coasted into the turn, where I had the inside line and took a wide corner to the chute and hopped out of the water before her. Success!

Bike: 2:54:13, 12th AG, 47th amateur
Took some time in transition and got out onto Kermit and his new wheels and started off pretty easy. Lisa passed me just as we passed onto the base at Camp Pendelton. After the first climb I realized my HR monitor wasn't working so I started playing with my Garmin and I was becoming quickly frustrated so I quit that. Christine passed me and from then on it was a race. And it was fun. I knew I didn't have a shot at hell in placing in my AG, but I sure as heck wanted her and Lisa to do well, so I kept up the pace and kept them motivated to keep the first girl in sight {B+L kit?}. We were swapping leads through the base and into San Onofre and back onto the base. I felt pretty good going into the first hill and unfortunately let her and Lisa slip away, and I never saw them again. I hit a LOW point after the downhill. The winds started to pick up and I felt like I was going no where in my small ring. It was almost a bonk, except I was eating enough. I had enough caffeine. I just chalked it up to not enough training and a crappy, exhausting week. It started to get scary when my eyes started drying up and they kept involuntarily closing. I really thought I was going to end up in the ditch or crashing. Those were not good moments for me. I didn't think I'd be able to finish the bike, much less run. I caught some legal drafts back to T2 and walked my bike to my rack. It's a race for goodness sake, and I'm walking. Think angry cat face. I dump Kermit and thank him for a job well done for getting be back safely. The new Zipp Firecrest 404 650s were amazing and I feel bad I couldn't do them justice. I walk to the "run out" exit and see Julie who is yelling at me to start running. So I started running.

go Kermit!
ramps of death
Run: 2:17:05, 57th AG {not kidding}
And that was the run. I "ran" the entire run besides the ridiculous ramps/and steep hill jaunts that make the course a crazy rat race. I ran through the aid stations. And I ran to the finish. I was so glad to have so many people out there I knew. It was a mental game for me to attempt to enjoy this experience. My ankle/foot hurt with every step. My quads and hamstrings were steps away from cramps but the salt tabs, coke, and ice were doing their magic. My lower back was less barky than I thought it would be. I wished I had a visor. Yet, my smile worked. It was infectious. There was no use grimacing through the race. After mile 4, I asked Brian what my swim time was, I almost had a heart attack. I almost tripped on my face. I almost started crying. But what I did do was smile. Seriously, I did not believe him. Good thing the race wasn't on April 1. I knew that no matter how I finished, I would always have that swim. And so I smiled.

finish chute. yes i did look back and check for girls.

OA: 5:41:22
I ended up 25th in my ridiculously stacked "new" age group. Even though this was my slowest half ironman to date, even though it wasn't my hardest earned finish, this race will still hold a different place in my heart. I overcame obstacles and kept a mostly positive attitude. I will get my revenge for this race, maybe not at this race, but I wish to fully conquer the 70.3 distance in a way I know I'm fully capable of.

phew. filled with positive emotion and some tears.
I'm a tactical racer. I hate running. It's not about tactics, it's about laying it all out there. And I'm no good at that. Swimming is tactics and technique, course corrections and effort management. Cycling is very much about race planning, strategy, nutrition, pacing, course knowledge. Running is about pain and frustration and just isn't fun. I really really need to get stronger and much more efficient with this running game and I know I can enjoy it. But the journey getting there is tough.

thank you sherpa kyle.
P.S. I would pay good money to start with the male pro's and get the hole shot behind Andy Potts. I really really would like to know if I could hang with them and what I'm capable of without having to swim over and around the masses.


Monday, April 1, 2013

Tape {Errr}

5:41 (50min after pro start). Slowest half to date.

I'm not really sure where to start with this Oceanside 70.3 race report, so here it goes. I finished. With a smile on my face. My journey to that finish line was one I wouldn't like to repeat, and it's not necessarily about lessons learned this time.

I suppose I'll start with this. I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in college. I'll spare the details, but it wasn't pretty. Scopes, colonoscopies, and too many visits to the gastroenterologist, I was finally able to move past the pain and flares and learn how to control the frequency. There is no exact cause or cure, so no use worrying about that stuff. It came down to stress, spicy foods, and Crystal Light.

Fast forward to two weeks ago. I had ZERO energy. I couldn't motivate myself to get out of bed to ride, run or swim. I had less of an appetite. I couldn't focus. Work has been super busy, so all my energy and focus has been diverted to making it through the day and being as productive as possible. I knew I wasn't over trained as I hadn't been reaching my potential with weekly mileage/time and running was severely cut since Carlsbad half. And then I remembered all these feelings and this pain.

And I knew it was back.

Last Monday I had a pre-op appointment for the tonsils. All the useless paperwork signing for anesthesia. I felt like crap when I woke up. I couldn't eat. I went home after that appointment and had to take a nap. I emailed my doctor and they called 40 min later and told me to go to the ER to see the gastro. I was in quite a bit of pain, so I went. And I sat and waited. And was there for 8 hours. Got some pain medication, which I don't like and I hate doing. I wasn't asked to give a stool sample when I got there or at any point until the end of the evening, after the pain meds which make me not able to go. I left with a fever and walking out I puked up the half of banana and apple juice in the parking lot. I slept like crap. I was angry at the system and mad at myself for taking the medication. Tuesday I went to the gastro and got a scope and they told me it takes 1-2 weeks to get the results.

Wednesday I was back to work and had a full schedule with three bike fit appointments and there were only 2 of us at the shop. Thursday and Friday were spent standing at the Oceanside expo for work in the Zipp booth for 10+ hour days.

Yeah, the taper wasn't looking so hot.

Since my body wasn't interested in me getting to the finish line, I knew my mind was going to have to work overtime. Race report to follow...

{tonsillectomy tomorrow, so it may be a minute for the RR}

Endless thanks to my husband {sherpa} for his love and care through all this crap. He has made getting through this much easier. Sometimes I give him a hard time {okay, a lot of time} but I truly couldn't do this without him. {even if I did call him the worst sherpa ever for posting himself at the bottom of a hill on the bike to take pics...seriously?}

why are you here and not there? :) #hungoversherpa