The twins are rapidly approaching (many would say are probably already there) potty training age. Me, the one who swore up and town she was potty training early, has been lazy. Clearly, dealing with diapers is less annoying than dealing with all of the fun early potty training brings, like wondering if I should even bother leaving the house because one will be bound to say he has to use the potty as we turn out of the neighborhood.
Still, I don’t want the twins to be the only untrained ones in their daycare class, and while we were “trapped” in the house this weekend I thought we might give the”run around naked watch like a hawk and carry to potty when someone starts to pee” method.
Saturday, after my run, I thought.
No, after nap.
I meant Monday.
Monday I really did finally rip a diaper off Abby and proceed to stare at my 2 year olds butt more than I ever stared before. Ironically, it was then that Miles decided he, too, needed his diaper off. He actually sat on the potty a couple of times but of course nothing happened.
All day long I said the word potty more than I ever cared to. Bryan found potty songs on you tube, and we played them until I heard this:
I feel it, I feel it, I feel it. I know what to do when I have to poop. I go to the potty, pull my underwear down then I sit & wait sit & wait sit & wait till the poop plops down. Then I wipe & wipe till brown leaves town, put it in the toilet & flush it down. Bye, bye poop. Bye bye poop. Then I pull up my pants wash my hands wash my hands & do the potty dance (instumentla)) I DID IT !
I’m sorry, but till the brown leaves town? No. NO NO NO.
I never realized how much time my kid spent sitting on the couch until I found myself hoping she wouldn’t pee on it. It was after the millionth “no pee on potty!” exclamation that I put a diaper back on her before I left town (ha).
Abby peed a total of three times during my experiment. The first time, it was turing the 2 minutes I spent cleaning up lunch, when Miles announced “Abby pee on floor!” The second time was during nap (diaper on, thank you), and the third time was in the high chair.
they I am not ready for this.
Universe: 3 Me: 0
It’s still early, but so far I think I like the Run Less Run Faster plan. I like having a goal for each run and a sense of achievement when things feel tedious.
Monday – Run 7 miles tempo. 1 mile easy/5 miles @ 8:35/1 mile easy. It’s almost October, but is still humid like August. At least the temperature is 77 and not 95, so that’s something. I struggled a little with this one because of the humidity but my overall pace for all 7 miles was around 8:36. One of my biggest issues is consistency mile to mile. Sometimes I jump all over the place. 8:34, 8:27, 8:21, 8:27, 8:20 for the tempo portion isn’t horrible, but I’m really trying to stay within 3-5 seconds.
I had my massage Monday and my piriformis was so tight the girl spent the entire hour on it and the back of my legs. Ugh. It felt better but still not gone.
Tuesday: swim 1350 yards. Last day pool within walking distance is open :( Boo.
Wednesday: run 4.5 miles. Speed work day. Workout 3×1200 with 400 meter recovery, straight through. My goal time for 1200’s is 5:18, but with the stroller I used a slower pace goal and was shooting for 5:46. I was actually super consistent with this one – 5:47, 5:47, 5:48.
Thursday: Cross training. 45 minutes of yoga and 25 minutes of weights. I haven’t picked up a weight in MONTHS but told myself I was going to start adding it in again. I took it easy and added in some butt/hip exercises to hopefully help this piriformis issue I’m having. The twins kept themselves entertained
Friday: REST DAY
Saturday: Long Run. Plan called for 15 miles but since I hadn’t gotten my longest run up above 6 miles I’m starting a little slower. 12 miles @ 9:20 was goal pace. Charleston has gotten INSANE amounts of rain this weekend and Saturday was day 2 of the madness. This meant I had to suffer through 12 miles on a treadmill. I did enlist some company though and that made all the difference.
I’m getting through each run but still having to stop and stretch. I’m foam rolling, icing, stretching, going to the chiropractor and I’m still feeling some discomfort. I feel like I am getting through ok because of the recovery days between but am not sure at this point that I’d be able to make 26 miles. If I can’t get this figured out soon, it might call for some total rest days. ugh.
It’s been raining in Charleston.
I mean RAINING. This probably isn’t news to anyone who watches the news – but the city has essentially been shut down and many of the cities nearby are experiencing flooding too. This is one time I’m glad we live further away and “up on higher ground” so to speak, because although we are likely going to be trapped at home for the weekend, we should be safe and dry.
This weekend was my second long run in my plan, and since its done nothing but rain (with some lightning) that means I had to get it done on the……dun dun dun.
Hamster wheel of doom.
My longest run on a treadmill so far was 8 miles. When I was training for Myrtle Beach last year and Bryan was working I split my long run into 3 segments, one of which was 8 miles on the treadmill. Even with Gilmore Girls streaming on Netflix, it was horribly mind numbing and I stopped every two miles because I was so bored. When Bryan got home I couldn’t fly out of the house quickly enough.
This time I enlisted company.
I almost hate to say it, but it really wasn’t that bad. I had anticipated a weather check every 30 seconds out of boredom, but while I did stop to stretch a couple of times, and refill water, all in all it was a pretty nice run. The company makes a HUGE difference.
But I’d really rather not do it again.
One race right into another.
I’d really like to improve my speed in the marathon and even qualify for Boston one day, but with my hip/butt issue I really try to keep my running down to 3 days a week. That plan worked well for me last year and I was able to PR by pacing myself well, but in order to really decrease my time I need more focus.
For this race I’m using the “Run Less, Run Faster” plan. It includes three “quality runs” and two days of of cross training. The quality runs are one tempo run (longer run at a set pace faster than goal but slower than speed work), a speed work run and a long run. Each run has specific pace goals and supposedly, if you follow it, you can meet your time goals.
To qualify for Boston I’d need to run in 3 hours and 35 minutes, or 27 minutes faster than my current fastest. Per my most recent 5k times, the book suggests I can shoot for a 3:45, so that’s my goal. If I can do that, next year’s focus will be a BQ.
Since it was the week right after the triathlon I followed the plan more loosely, only doing 2 of the 3 recommended runs.
Monday: rest day
Tuesday: 45 minutes of yoga. My muscles tend to be tight anyway but extra bad during races, and my nagging hamstring was still nagging, so I was hoping to loosen up a little.
Wednesday: 4.5 miles – usually speed work Wednesday, this week we took to some hills. Luckily, a couple guys offered to push the stroller up a couple of them so I didn’t have to do them all. The steep ones were killer and I had to stop and walk a bit at the top.
Thursday: swim 1200 yards. I’m planning to keep swimming over the winter once a week as it is by far my weakest area in triathlons. Hoping I can gain some speed.
Friday run 4 miles (8:28 pace). I cheated on the long run a bit (and will probably for a few weeks) and split it. The last time I tried to jump too much in the milage I ended up with this hamstring issue and I’d really prefer it go away, not get worse. I was supposed to run 13 miles with a goal pace of 9:05. Obviously I didn’t do great following that here.
Saturday: 9 miles (9:01 pace). The second half of my long run. I had planned to run solo but Miles woke up screaming at 6am so I just fed them breakfast and pushed them. I doubted they’d make it the whole way without getting irritated but they did – making this my longest stroller run. I meant to get a picture, but I forgot. Fail.
Sunday: 50 minutes of yoga/swim 1400 yards. I did a ladder working on speed this time. So 1 lap fast/1 slow, 2 laps fast/ 2 slow, 3 fast/3 slow, 4 fast/4slow and back down again, with 400 yard warm up and 200 yard cool down.
It’s funny how an incident can change what ends up on your bucket list. For years, I was a runner. I ran 4-5 days a week. Sometimes I pulled on my rollerblades (yes, I still own rollerblades) or took a yoga class but the majority of the time I was lacing up my running shoes.
Then, after the twins were born, I likely made the mistake of jumping back in too quickly (ha), and injured myself. Like, I was limping around just walking, panicked I had broken or torn something and I’d have to give up running. When the chiropractor suggested I started biking (ok….), and then swimming (omg) I initially laughed. Biking was ok – Bryan had gotten me a hybrid for my birthday and I enjoyed the occasional ride, but swimming? I can’t swim! I could dog paddle to the end of the pool, but any considerable distance? No way. Still, I wanted to be able to keep running, so I reluctantly tried it.
Today, I started looking at half ironman training plans.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
I wanted a bigger challenge than the sprints this year, but wasn’t sure about the swimming or training time commitment with two toddlers for a half ironman, so I met in the middle and chose an Olympic Distance. Interestingly, Olympic distance races can still vary some in the specific lengths of each sport (which makes no sense to me), and Kiawah was a .7 mile (1125 meter) swim, 25 mile bike ride and an almost 10k (6.1 miles).
Race day began early…..really early. My alarm went off at 4am. Luckily, even though the majority of the group was training for the Augusta Half Ironman the next weekend, there was another person racing Kiawah, and he so graciously allowed me to ride along. I was at his house by 4:30 am and we were on our way by 4:45.
I didn’t even know what 4:45 looked like before Sunday.
Anyway, the first stop was packet pickup and number marking.
Then setting up the transition area.
And of course take a pre race picture.
The walk to the race start was about 10 minutes or so – across a road, down a boardwalk and .7 miles down the beach, since the swim was a straight shot end to end. As luck would have it, we were walking towards the beach just as the sun was coming up.
The swim start was in waves. The first group started at 7:30 and each subsequent group in 3 minute increments. I was in the 3rd group slated to start at 7:36. By the time the groups started going I was just ready to go.
Distance: .7 miles (or 1125 meters)
Goal time: under 30 minutes
This race was unlike the sprints in that the swim didn’t start in the water. Not only that but you had to “run” to a point where the water was deep enough to actually start swimming….. with 62 of your closest friends all trying to do the same. I settled myself near the end because I knew I’d be slower and wanted to be kicked as little as possible. Luckily, once that horn went off my competitive mode set in and killed any and all nerves I had at the start. I was SO glad I had done that one ocean practice swim, because the conditions of the water then made this seem like a breeze, relatively speaking. I ran into probably 3 people and ran directly into one buoy (oops), but other than that the swim went pretty smoothly. I concentrated on getting form buoy to buoy and tried not to worry about anything else. There was a bit of a current too so that helped. I actually finished swimming in 27 minutes and some change, but getting out of the water was another challenge, and the transition mat was actually up the beach by the boardwalk, which added another couple minutes.
Actual time: 30:06
Goal time: just don’t fall
Typically people in triathlons are selfless, but the dude in the transition area next to me was not. By the time I got to my transition, my bike was on top of (instead of next to) my stuff. Luckily, the guy on my left had already gone, so I just used his space. Also, it was the LONGEST.RUN.EVER from the transition mat to the actual transition area. Socks on, shoes on, helmet on, applesauce (yes I fuel with squeeze applesauce) in pockets, sunglasses on, inhaler at the ready and I was off.
Actual time: 2:11
Distance: 25 miles
Goal time: under 1 hour 20 minutes
For a 1 hour 20 minute finish time, I needed to maintain a 19 mph average. I’d tried to do this at the last few group rides by going off on my own more and had been mostly successful, but tired. Race day can be a different environment for sure, but I didn’t expect any drastic difference. Boy was I wrong, and in a good way. A fellow triathlete and friend told me once during my last sprint that I was “mashing”. Basically, that means I was pedaling too hard and likely wearing my legs out more than I needed to. The problem always was I wasn’t sure how to spin enough on a lower gear and keep my speed up. Well, something clicked and I figured it out. The race course itself was nice – though I could have done without the traffic that just wasn’t sure how to handle the fact that there were bikers on the road. I finished the first 15 miles at a great pace, and was starting to tire a little when a group caught up to me. My competitive side kicked in and I wanted to keep up with them, and so that gave me the boost I needed.
Actual time: 1 hour, 13 minutes, 9 seconds (!!!)
Goal time: I really didn’t have one. I had no idea what to expect.
So, remember the mystery dude who stuck my bike on top of my stuff in transition 1? Well, this time he stuck HIS bike on top of my stuff, leaving no room for my bike. Bad form, mystery dude (or dudette I suppose). So, I had to MOVE his bike in order to make room for mine, and I just stood there for probably 15 seconds feeling like I had forgotten something before I actually moved.
Actual time: 2:01
Goal time: under 50 minutes
Charleston isn’t Charleston without its oppressive heat and humidity, which has FINALLY started breaking the week before. Unluckily, the temperature decided to creep back up over the weekend with a high of 90. So, by the time the run started, it was warm. The first few miles weren’t so bad because it was shaded. Around mile 4 the run took us down the beach. It was BEAUTIFUL, but WARM, and it slowed my pace down significantly. In the end my run time was a little over what I’d hoped for but all in all I couldn’t complain.
Actual time: 50:44
And just like that, it was over. Amazing how something you train so hard for for so long is over in just a few hours. I stopped my watch, glanced down, and realized I had beat my goal time by 7 minutes!
Goal time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Actual time: 2 hours 38 minutes 8 seconds
Overall Female: 24/120
Age Group: 6/22
Bike: 20/120 (!)
Is it time for next season yet?
Taper time! Already….?
Sunday: Run 41 minutes (5 miles)/swim 35 minutes (1,400 yards). I had planned to try out another ocean swim, but with an hour drive one way and a friend who backed out I decided to stay home. Whether or not that was a good decision for race day is yet to be determined but it was COOL outside and so I was able to push the stroller at an 8:12/mile pace!
Monday: Swim 40 minutes (1700 meters). Swam 1100 meters straight (race is 1125) and then did some drills. I’m still slow but I honestly feel like my form is getting better.
Tuesday: Ride 51 minutes (16 miles). I joined the group ride and cut out early.
Wednesday: Run 24 minutes (3 miles). It was a local running store’s first Pub Run. Usually Wednesday is speed work day but as a group we decided to participate in this instead. Of course, the twins came along. It was a 3 mile run around downtown Summerville, followed by a drink. Who can say no to that?
Thursday: Swim 25 minutes (1250 yards). My official final training workout. It felt a little weird to complete, to be honest.
Friday: Rest day
Saturday: Rest day (walk with twins)
The nice thing about taper week is it freed up more time in my schedule to start taking the twins for walks again (the cooler weather helped too). The walking also helped tamper the “taper crazies” by allowing me to move without fatiguing my muscles too much.
So, for real now, training is officially over, and race day is TOMORROW.
I think I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.
Swim: 62 minutes/ (100 minutes)
Ride: 125 minutes/ (51 minutes)
Run: 23 minutes/ (65 minutes)
210 minutes/ (216 minutes)
Race day is one week away. I am beginning to feel this mixture of excitement and nerves.
Thanks to steroids and antibiotics, I was FINALLY able to get over that cough I had for a week and a half. Unfortunately, Bryan is still fighting it, and Miles appears to be sick too. Ugh. This happened the last time I had a big race coming up, the Myrtle Beach Marathon. There, I was able to avoid the stomach bug Miles had for the race, and promptly came down with it the day after. Here’s hoping I’ve already had my turn this time.
Sunday: ride 2 hours 8 minutes (40 miles)/run 15:30 (2 miles). One last long group ride. This ride wasn’t my strongest but it went fairly well. I ended up doing half as a group and half solo, so I could try to gauge how fast I’d be able to go on race day. Afterwards I made a last minute decision to lace up my shoes and run a couple miles, and I was really glad I did. I ran two really strong miles that were both under an 8 minute mile pace!
Monday: run 30 minutes (3.25 miles)/swim 35 minutes (1200 yards). I took Chance on the run with me – one downside of fall coming is its still dark at 6:30, and then dropped him back home and swam some laps, still working on my overall form and bilateral breathing.
Tuesday: run 40 minutes (4.6 miles)/swim 20 minutes (900 yards). I did this workout in the evening. It was humid, but it must be getting a little better weather wise because I’m starting to see an decrease in my overall average pace FINALLY! I thought the day would never come.
Wednesday: run 45 minutes (4.8 miles and a walk cool down). Speed work day! There was a middle school football scrimmage game at the track so we had to change the work out and take it to the road next to the track. This road has a hill. We did 8×600 with 1:30 rest in between. A couple friends traded off pushing the stroller for me this time, which I appreciated in particular because of this hill. My pace was kinda everywhere because of it but I had one solo segment at a 6:55 average.
Thursday: ride 50 minutes (16 miles)/swim 30 minutes (1300 yards). I had originally planned to join the group ride but had the time in the morning to do the workout solo so I did that instead so I could be home after work. Plus, I needed a scenery change ride wise.
Friday: REST DAY
Saturday: run 45 minutes (5.5 miles). I was finally able to exchange the birthday shoes I got (they were giving me a blister :( ) and decided to try a pair of Mizuno’s, which I got to take on a test run. Good news – no blisters, and a 8:17/mile average! Double win!
Swim: 109 minutes/ (81 minutes)
Ride: 158 minutes/ (180 minutes)
Run: 180 minutes/ (175 minutes)
The final week is taper week. In my opinion, for all intents and purposes, my training is over – this last week coming up is mostly maintenance.
The big day is soon!
This week was supposed to be my peak training week, but instead I’m renaming it fail week.
Sunday – unplanned rest day. I woke up at 3am with a stomachache that hung around all day. I never actually got sick but I sure didn’t feel well. I did watch quite a few episodes of Parenthood, so there’s that.
Monday – ride 30 minutes. I actually still felt cruddy and ended up taking the day off. By the end of the day I had started to feel like myself again so I did an easy trainer ride for a half hour. I watched a lot more Parenthood.
Tuesday – run 49 minutes (5.8 miles)/ride 80 minutes (24 miles). I got up and took chance for a run in the morning (hamstring felt ok yay!) and then joined the group ride in the evening. I’m trying to gauge how fast I’m going to be able to go solo on race day so tried not to draft for most of the ride. Man, drafting is so much easier. I’m coughing but I figure its just an allergy flare up.
Wednesday – swim 35 minutes (1250 yards) run 43 minutes (4.8 miles). Speed work day! Today’s run was 3 sets of 4×400 with 1 minute rest between each 400 and 3 minutes between each set. I managed a 7:30-7:50 average pushing the stroller and I was more than happy with that, but my hamstring started acting up towards the end (ugh). Still coughing.
Thursday yoga 60 minutes/swim 38 minutes (1400yards). By this point the sinuses and coughing I’d been fighting all week has started to feel worse. Coughing all week and an upset hamstring made me think I should try to get some yoga in even though it’s not part of my swim/bike/run plan. Oh man I could tell I hadn’t done yoga in awhile. The evening was a big one : my first ocean swim. I wanted to get some pictures but didn’t want my phone stolen and left it in the car. Luckily, the guy I swam with was super patient as ocean swimming so SO MUCH different – especially because the water was pretty choppy and had pretty consistent rolling waves. At some points I felt like I was trying to swim in a bounce castle. I gulped a few mouthfuls of salt water (ugh) and stopped to tread water a few times the first half while I was trying to get my bearings, not lose the other swimmer and make sure I wasn’t going too far offshore. The second half went more smoothly but overall it was still SLOW. Luckily, I’ve been told that the likelihood of Kiawah being that choppy is slim, so here’s hoping it’ll be a little easier. Still, I think I’m going to have to lower my swim time expectation a little. BUT I’M ALIVE!
Friday: swim 35 minutes (1250 yards). Still trying to figure out this whole bilateral breathing thing. Still sucking at it. Still coughing.
Saturday: yoga 35 minutes. By the time we put the twins to bed Friday I had a low grade fever. After hacking and coughing for a week (worse at night than the day luckily) that was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I had hoped to fit a long run in but I spent the morning at Doctors Care instead. A steroid shot and some scripts later, here’s hoping I’m finally back on the path to health. I did some easy yoga for runners to try to work on the tight muscles from all the coughing.
Swim: 128 minutes/(108 minutes)
Ride: 248 minutes/(110 minutes)
Run: 180 minutes/(95 minutes)
+ 95 minutes yoga
556 minutes/(408 minutes)
And I survived an ocean swim!!!
10 tips for your next run with twins.
Tip #1: Pack Snacks
Don’t be stingy either. Pack more snacks than you think you’d ever need. When I take them to speed work, I take an entire (albeit small) cooler. Don’t just pack what they’ve liked for the last week because when you’re on mile 3 is when they’ll decide that they no longer accept crackers. Case in point, both Miles and Abby love dum dum suckers (aka P Pops), but I gave them one last night and Miles, who is always the one that is SUPER excited, randomly declares “all done p pop”. Of course. You might also want to try to pack things you’d find mentally acceptable for an entire meal, because that’s generally what it becomes. Let’s not talk about the time dinner was an entire roll of Ritz crackers….not that last night was much better (veggie straws, almonds and squeeze applesauce).
Tip #2: Run a Little Faster
Built in intervals. When a toddler starts to whine, just push faster! This will usually elicit a “weeeee!” Sometimes it works to just stop for a sec until they whine and then go again, because moving is faster than not moving.
Tip #3: Fast Reflexes
Drinks are great to occupy toddlers, but I’ve found that when they are done with them, they were done, like, yesterday. So figure out how to maneuver to the side, WHILE RUNNING, and grab said cup before the sixth chorus of “all done” and the cup is released to the ground. Not a huge deal if you’re running solo and wanted a break anyway. A bigger deal if you’re running in a group, someone trips over said cup and you’re banned from then forward.
Tip #4: Steering
This one is more for group runs, but make sure you know how to steer the stroller, and don’t get lazy about it. Friends don’t like it when you clip their heels or nearly run them off the track. (Sorry Lisa!)
Tip #5: Prepare for Pictures
Aka: make sure the visors are up for group pictures so your toddlers don’t look headless.Tip #6: Music
Really you should just have music with or without toddlers, but it is pretty entertaining to hear “Abby! Dance!” and watch feet bob up and down.
Tip #7: Be Prepared to Quit Early, or Endure the Wrath
Always always go into a stroller run with the mindset that you might not get to finish what you set out to finish. I’ve been lucky, particularly with speed work that they start to melt down right around the time we are finishing up, but I’ve had runs where total meltdowns happened. Usually then I’m at a point where its closer for me to finish the run than it is to turn around, so I just get to listen to screaming with my music and pretend we are at a rock concert or something. WOOOOOOOOO!!
Tip #8: Shoes
Not your toes – the toddlers shoes. Make sure they aren’t easy to take off. See “fast reflexes”
Tip #9: Avoid Hills
Seriously, just don’t do it. Weight of toddlers + weight of stroller + hill? No.
Tip #10: Smile
Because people will stare at you like you’re nuts. It’s ok though, because you can probably outrun them. :)
Just one more heavier week and then things start to relax a bit. Except with this tropical storm there is an 80% chance of rain, and therefore super boring indoor workouts, for the next 4 days. Ugh. This is a really bad time to have hamstring issues.
Sunday: Run 122 minutes (12 miles). I decided to do a long run instead of the usual long ride. It was humid, and my left hamstring started to tighten up around mile 9, causing me to stop and stretch a few times after that. I think I maybe added too many miles onto my current longest run, but thought I’d be ok if I took it slow. Maybe not.
Monday: Trainer ride 40 minutes and 41 minute swim (1700 meters). I don’t trust drivers and school traffic so I read a book while I rode. For the swim I did 1200 meters at what I’d consider a comfortable pace to see how long it would take me (the race swim is 1126 meters), and finished in 28 minutes and some change. I worked on my bilateral breathing after that.
Tuesday: Hamstring is still tight so got up so swam 23 minutes (900 yards) and then joined the group ride which lasted 85 minutes (25 miles). Skipped the run.
Wednesday: Usually speed work day but skipped it because I didn’t want to risk injuring my hamstring. Swam 33 minutes (1250 yards) in the morning and rode on the trainer for 40 minutes after work, but the twins and I still crashed the after party :)
Thursday: Group ride 70 minutes (23 miles). Joined the group doing the trail this time and tried to stay out front or alone as much as I could to judge how well I could do. You’re not allowed to draft on race day and group rides usually involve quite a bit of drafting.
Friday: REST DAY! Bryan and I spend a night downtown for our anniversary (celebrating a bit early because the weekend of our actual anniversary is pretty busy) and have dinner at California Dreaming, where he proposed to me 5 years ago :)
Saturday: Run 42 minutes (4.5 miles). Ugh. Hamstring still doesn’t feel right. I stopped every mile to judge how it was doing and ultimately cut it a bit short (was shooting for 50-55 minutes), iced and KT taped it when I got back. I have been stretching all week and this is just getting frustrating. It isn’t causing a lot of pain, it kind of….aches? But the last thing I need is a torn hamstring causing me to have to drop out of this race, so I’m trying not to overdo it. I did get some nice pictures to share with my IRun4 buddy though.