Sunday, May 29, 2011

BRATS Salute to the Military Sprint Triathlon

Race: BRATS Salute to the Military Triathlon
Date: May 29, 2011
Location: Vint Hill, VA
Race Type: Sprint: 300 meter pool swim, 11.75 mi bike, 3.1 mi run
Division: Age Group 45-49
Time: 1:20:58
Place: 3rd in Age Group

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Race Report:

Swim (300 Meters): 7:08 - 2nd in age group
When I picked up my race packet the lady told me "Wow, you must be a fast swimmer" (because my race number was 32). I looked at her and said " must have lied when I registered!" I had estimated my time at 6 minutes and was pretty sure I would swim a little faster than that. But, I was seeded in front of people who were obviously faster than me and I had to stop at the wall four times to allow swimmers to pass.I lost a little bit of time in the pool but I'm never too speedy there anyway and knew I could make up the time on the bike.
T1: 1:33 - 1st in age group
I'm always pretty quick in transition and T1 was no exception. I felt pretty good coming out of the water (guess waiting at the wall for people to pass helped me slow down a little) and we had a nice little jog of about 25 yards over to the transition area to our bikes. A quick little change and I was outta there!

Bike (11.75 mi): 41:51 @ 16.8 mph - 1st in age group

I was a little disappointed in this result. I felt I was doing the best I could on the bike although there were points where I felt I was losing ground going up the hills. When I raced my last 70.3 I kept a pace of over 18 mph on the course. Of course, it was a pancake flat course but, it was also 56 miles. So, I was hoping to have a pace of around 19-20 mph on this course. The hills were rolling but my pace was anywhere from 11 mph to 30 mph so I was hoping for a better average! What I think happened is that every time I had a good pace going I had to slow to turn. There were 3 U-turns and several other turns throughout this course so I'm blaming it on that!

T2: 0:49:05 - 2nd place in age group
As typical, T2 transition didn't go as smoothly as T1. But, I was in and out in less than a minute so I was satisfied with my time.
Run (3.1 miles): 29:37:65 (9:33 min/mile pace) - 4th place in age group

Although I was VERY pleased with my personal result, this is what stopped me from winning first place in my age group. Today's race was the first time ever I have posted under a 10:00 min/mile pace in ANY triathlon. Typically I kill myself so much in the bike that I'm totally wiped by the time I get to the run and my pace is way off from what I can typically race if I was just doing a run. In other words, my current 5K pace is right around 9:00 min/mile but to run that pace in the run portion of a triathlon never happens for me. So, I was very proud of my time today but it just wasn't enough to cut it for a higher ranking. 

Summary and lessons learned 

This is the second time I have raced this course. The first time I raced was in 2009 and I ended up coming in 3rd place in my age group. So, I had something to prove. I wanted to show myself that I could give it all I had and win that first place award. I knew I had improved over the last two years and this would be a nice way to start out the tri season. I was pretty pleased with my time since it was a 17 minute personal record on a sprint course but I walked away with another 3rd place award. What I came to find out later is that I was only 19 seconds...19 seconds...away from grabbing that first place trophy! Oh the things that go through my mind...I shouldn't have let that swimmer pass me...I shouldn't have unclipped on that last U-turn...I should have kept my head up and stayed focused during the run...I shouldn't have grabbed water from the Boy Scouts...EVERY LITTLE SECOND COUNTS! That was my biggest lesson learned today. You can do all you can to prepare for race day but unless you leave it ALL out there (which I don't really think I did today...) then you have nobody to blame but yourself. Lesson learned!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Can a mom eat a Mother's Day buffet and still lose weight?

I haven't been a fan of buffets most of my life and even less so when I'm trying to watch what I eat. So, when it was suggested we go to a Korean buffet for Mother's Day I decided to give it a try. Obviously, if you're going to pick a buffet to go to you want it to be a relatively healthy one. I mean, have you ever been to Captain George's Seafood Buffet in Virginia Beach? Well, don't let the word "seafood" confuse you. Every imaginable fried fish, tons of yummy fat-loaded desserts (heck, I could make a whole meal off the dessert bar!), lots of buttery and cheesy get the point. So, going to a mostly healthy Korean food buffet wasn't near as bad.

When I arrived, I immediately headed to the salad bar section first. They had much more than yucky iceberg lettuce and your typical salad bar condiments. I filled about three fourths of my plate with salad. Then I got some additional veggies on the side. Of course, when you are at a Korean BBQ buffet you MUST eat some bulgogi (ie meat). So, I got my required 5-8 oz of meat, had a yummy salad, some extra veggies and a small dessert. Now, if you have ever eaten at a Korean restaurant you know their desserts aren't the same as American desserts. So, this two bite-sized piece of "cake" was a way for me to celebrate being a mother and still not go far off my weight loss journey.

Although I wasn't totally unhappy with my choices at the buffet there is always the thought in the back of my head wondering exactly how the food was prepared. There might be hidden calories in the food that could sabotage my weight loss. Thankfully that didn't seem to be the case this week but it's something I must continually try to observe as I go along this process. I don't eat out often but when I do I want to make the most healthy choices possible.

Here are the stats:
This week:
4.5 lb weight loss
0.5 inch in waist
0.01% body fat loss

Total since March 31st
21.5 lbs weight loss
0.5 inch from my chest
7 inches from my waist
4 inches from my hips
1.5 inch from my arm
1.5 inches from my thigh
3% of my total body fat
No significant lean body mass loss

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Learning who are my dieting "friends"

This week I have come to learn who it is that really cares about me - who are my dieting friends. I can tell you for sure that my friends have been broccoli, lettuce, bell peppers, protein, etc. I have also come to learn who are NOT my dieting friends: tortilla chips, jellybean and emotional sabotage.

This past week I found myself cheating, once again. I know I told you in this blog I wouldn't but, to be honest...I'm weak! That's right...weak! There is good news and bad news to my weakness. The bad news: a 2 lb weight gain. The good news: another lesson learned.

Let me break it down for you...

Throughout the week I ended up having little bites of food here and there (that cheater in me!). I would see tortilla chips sitting on the counter and, knowing my husband's homemade salsa was in the fridge it was just too much of a temptation for me. His homemade salsa only comes around once in a while so when it's here I feel I need to grab it. I started out eating the salsa with chips but, over a few days, I ended up just eating it by the spoonful instead. What I found out is I didn't really need the chips. Tomatoes are on the restricted list of foods I can only eat twice a week so I was careful not to eat too much salsa, though.

Jellybeans. HA! I've not even been a fan of jellybeans most of my life (except the black ones!). I don't know what convinced me to even buy the bag (yes I was on sale!). So, I bought a bag and left it in my car so when I was on the road I would reach for a handful...or two. I told my doctor I felt the jellybeans were a better option for me than chocolate. Not from a nutritional standpoint (because dark chocolate isn't as bad as you might think) but I didn't eat as many jellybeans as I would have eaten chocolate had chocolate been my craving at the time. I wouldn't have stopped at just one "handful" and might have blown my diet all together. The good news is - they were in my Dr. Wichin suggested I bring them into his office and throw them away. It was the start of a new day for me and I'm ready to move again in a forward motion.

As I mentioned before, I have a tendency to sabotage myself when I get to a certain weight/size. Well, I currently weigh less than I have at those times in the past and I'm currently in a smaller size than before. But, I wonder if subconsciously I'm trying to sabotage myself again. I need to keep a focused effort on that during the next week.

My workouts have increased both in time and effort so I'm feeling more hunger than I have before. I had a pretty good run this week which is the first one in a while. I had energy during the run but I had also had a handful of jelly beans just before I stepped out the door. So, I'm interested to see how I do this week without the jellybeans. I just need to remain focused on the goal rather than the immediate pleasure.

So, what role did this play during my weigh-in this week? Well, I'm still a little unsure. Obviously, the cheating wasn't healthy for me. This journey isn't just about weight loss to me but also about being healthier. I gained two pounds this week but it's also "that" time of the month so the gain (and the cravings) might also be associated with that. The good thing is I didn't gain any body fat this week. As a matter of fact, my body fat percentage dropped by 0.7%. So, all the weight I did gain is water weight.

Here are the stats:
This week:
2 lb weight gain
0.5 inches in chest
0.5 inch in hips
0.5 inches in arm
0.70% body fat lost

Total since March 31st
17 lbs weight loss
0.5 inch from my chest
6.5 inches from my waist
4 inches from my hips
1.5 inch from my arm
1.5 inches from my thigh
2.99% of my total body fat
No significant lean body mass loss

Now a question for you: At any point during a weight loss journey (or a new workout plan) do you find yourself or others sabotaging your efforts? If so, what do you do about it to gain control again?