Sunday, April 22, 2012

Training and Ingredients

It has been a great couple of weeks on the training front. I've had some really strong training days, with Tuesday of this past week being the best. It's been awhile since I've had a 2 hour training day and finally I got my butt out of bed early enough to get it done. Did an hour bike, 30 minute run and 30 minute lift, it was FABULOUS! Even though I'm not training for anything in particular right now, it's so nice to get a strong workout in for my mental state. I'm a better mom, wife, friend and worker when I have those days. It still amazes me that people don't work out purely for the emotional lift. Sure there are days I don't feel like getting up and working out but I know I'll feel so much better. I've been continuing to explore additional plant based recipes and snacks and really believe that the key to my strength has been my nutritional changes.

Banana Blueberry Bread
Steel Cut Oats with Rice Milk, Chia, Flax and Fruit
Tofu Scramble
Brown Rice Stir Fry

 This week was a big week for the team. We did a simulated race day swim in the 50meter pool by pulling out the lane lines and sinking some buoys. First they had to swim counter clockwise for 20 minutes, then clockwise for 5 minutes and then split into teams to do a relay race. As a Coach, it was really amazing to watch the team go through the spectrum of emotions from panic, tears, to strong swimming and much more confidence. We even moved the buoys during their swim so they had to continually sight as the buoy may have moved. I had a really nice surprise when Nan made me a CD. I had been posting a bunch of music on FB (Musiq Soulchild and some 80s stuff) and she sent me Anthony Hamilton on Itunes and then made me a CD. Love all of the new music, THANKS Nan!! Team's first race is coming up soon and I can't wait to watch them all shine!

Today I watched the Documentary, Ingredients:

Really another great movie that provides some insight into farming and our food supply. Seriously the best quote ever from the movie:

"You shouldn't be buying garlic shipped in holds of ships from thousands of miles away, between sex toys and flip flops."

--Carol Boutard in the film Ingredient

 I still get a lot of question about where I find the recipes I try. Here are a few of my online 'go to' spots.

Vegan recipe links:
Vegan Zombie

Happy Earth Day, I hope it was a super green day for everyone!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Synchronicity and the 3 Second Shoe Tie

- The Police Synchronicity I

Not only on my playlist but also a fairly good description of my week. This week was pretty well lined up with getting my workouts in and getting work done. Had a fairly low stress week at work which was a complete switch from how the year has been so far. A little breathing room is a good thing. Workouts went well - just had to adjust a little given IronSherpa had some work commitments which then impacted my workouts. He's going to be traveling this week so my week should be sufficiently thrown in a blender and chopped up. 

This work thing is really getting in the way of my workouts and exploration of vegan cooking. I keep waiting for the day that one of these awesome triathlon gear companies calls and offers me the mid 40s, mom, middle of the pack triathlete sponsorship. IronSherpa can quit his job and just follow me around with my favorite music pumping out of his car, wheels on the back in case I flat out while I ride at my blistering 17-18 mph pace, mini me can set up a hydration table for me on my runs. I'll do my open water swims while mini me and IronSherpa play on the beach or ride next to me on a kayak. Okay, back to reality.

Here's how last week shook out on workouts:
Monday: run 3 miles, lift 20 minutes
Tuesday: Ride 60, run 2
Wednesday: Swim 1800
Thursday: off
Friday: Run 3, lift 30
Saturday: Helped lead a run clinic at Piedmont Park for the team. Very fun - did a quick lecture, learned that my Newly Appointed "Niece" (to be called NAN from now on) can not only drink on the bike now, but she can also tie her shoe laces in about 3 seconds. Check out Nan's video below and make sure you tip her on her fundraising page for the invaluable lesson she provides. Could save you some time on your T2, minimally it'll give you a laugh:

How to tie your shoe lace in 3 seconds without elastic laces and lace locks. 

Team then hit the drills with some dynamic stretches, stride counting and breathing patterns. Breakfast with the team afterwards. Always a fun time and crazy. It's amazing how running/triathlon draws such a funny group of people. Not funny in a strange way but funny in a borderline inappropriate, improv way. It's a good thing, you spend so much time together that there better be some comic relief.

 Coach Jo leading the Team through Dynamic Stretching

Got home and took Brooke back to Piedmont Park after our Team breakfast and played, played, played. The park was packed - we played soccer, did the swing sets, slides, etc. It's amazing to me how many parents just chill out and never play or interact with their kids. I sit on the bench now and again too but it's definitely not for the entire time that mini me is playing. We walked back home and had a great night going to see "Mirror Mirror", the Snow White movie with Julia Roberts at Atlantic Station. Good times!

Sunday: Run 4. So beautiful out with the weather a little cooler. I've had about 2 weeks in my new KSwiss K-Ona R shoes and they've been working pretty well. Very light, just haven't decided if they're too light though. The pollen got to me by the end of the run but still managed to get a good four in and then take Brooke back to the Park again after we did some Easter Egg hunting. The rest of the day I spent cooking and baking. Made Tofu scramble with red peppers, spinach and green onions and had a chia fresca. Had Ezekiel bread, hummus and the rest of the red peppers, spinach and green onions and smashed it in the panini press for lunch. Made banana and blueberry bread, pita chips and cookies in the afternoon. Dinner was veggie tacos with veggie grounds, baby spinach, tomatoes, rice, black beans and hot sauce. Below is a bit from my week:

 Banana Blueberry Bread                    Tofu Scramble
 Stir Fry Veggies and Brown Rice                   Cookies!

This week may be a little challenging. Some work constraints, IronSherpa traveling. Going to give it my best shot at getting all of my workouts in, we'll see how it goes!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Ironman 2013, Playlist and Getting More Greens

Big announcement a couple of weeks ago from Team in Training. Georgia will be doing the 2013 Coeur D'Alene Ironman. Immediately after the announcement, the emails started flying around about who from our 2011 IMAZ team would be joining again in 2013. I just so happen to be volunteering this year for IMCDA so I can cheer for my friend Paige, who will be racing this year. On one hand it seems a little bit like it's meant to be. I'm volunteering in 2012 for the race that is the 2013 choice, I'll be able to have first dibs on sign up the day after the race, preview the course, etc. On the other hand, training would start around September of this year and I'm just not sure that I'm ready to undertake that volume of training again. Maybe if it was IMAZ again and training started in 2013 vs. 2012 I would jump in a little easier. 

IronSherpa is not so pleased but is trying to still be supportive. When I talked to him in 2010 about signing up for 2011 IMAZ, he was on board but really, he had NO idea what his role would be for the 10 months of training and race day. I feel like I 'got away with it' once because he didn't fully understand the strain it would be for him too. His exact words to me upon entry into the 2013 Ironman negotiations were, "What happened to the girl who crossed the finish line and said I'm happy I did it once, but I'll never do it again?" Well, yep, he's got me there. I absolutely said that and absolutely meant it but I kind of feel like I have unfinished business out there. My stomach completely screwed my run up so I feel like I could've finished so much faster if I had gotten my nutrition right. Lots to think about. My next IM I really want to do both with the Team but also with one of my besties here in GA, Paige so there's a lot of figuring out to get this deal done. In the meantime, I'm trying to figure out my stakeholder (IronSherpa) and my next move in the negotiation process.

Training has been just okay. I've had some pretty puny workouts as far as endurance. This past week I got in a couple of swims, bikes and runs but none felt super strong. My best workout was on Saturday with the team. Just 20 miles out at Cartersville but I got to ride with one of our newer members to the summer tri team and she was doing great. It was fun to see her get more confident with shifting, hills and drinking while riding. Yes, you do have to drink while the bike is moving, Joy! 

I've been messing with my playlist lately. I listen to music whenever I workout indoors (never outdoors) so I get bored with it pretty quickly. I had a blend this week of classic/80s rock, hip hop, I don't know, just about everything really. I'm strange with music, I admit it. Here's a taste (no particular order - I shuffle songs):

Paul Revere - Beastie Boys
Ah Leah - Donny Iris
Universal Mind Control - Common
When it's Over - Loverboy
Abacab - Genesis
On the Loose - Saga
Look at Me Now - Chris Brown - Lil' Wayne
My Philosophy - BDP
Lips Like Sugar - Echo and the Bunnymen
Strictly Business - EPMD
Bleed it Out - Linkin Park
Solsbury Hill - Peter Gabriel
Electric Relaxation- Tribe Called Quest

On the vegan side, I've been trying to get away from the vegan cheeses and convenience foods. I looked at what I was eating and while yes, it was all vegan, it really didn't get me that many greens so I went back to the drawing board to try and make more things myself vs. buy the pre-made things. I also tried to get more greens in and really branch out. It's been a couple of months I think so I'm ready to explore.

Here are a few pictures from this week - Hummus


Ezekiel Bread, Hummus, baby spinach, mushrooms and cilantro and the Panini is done!! 

Thanks for checking out my blog! Let me know any songs you think I'll like - always looking to add different music to my workouts! If you've got some great vegan recipes with lots of greens, please send those my way too.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Old Lady Spine and My Fav Documentaries

It was kind of a slow week in training. You know you're an old lady when you pull your back doing a plank and then can't work out for a few days from pain. I got in a good swim Monday, did a ride/run brick Tuesday and ran, lifted Wednesday which was when I tweaked something. Coached Wednesday night swim with some pain and then nothing until my ride Saturday with the team. I didn't do too much on the bike with miles or speed, just tried to circulate throughout the team and make sure everybody was feeling good. Such strong athletes, they're doing so well! Love, love, love to see them growing in their confidence on their workouts. GO TEAM!

I've been able to catch some documentaries now that my Ironman training has ended and left me with some actual free time. One thing to know about me is I absolutely love documentaries. I thought I'd put some of my favorites in here so if you've got some time, you can check them out. Most are on Netflix so they're free if you've got an account, woohoo!
Hope you see some that may interest you. Next week I'll put in some books that are pretty incredible on food, running and triathlon. 

I'm at 3 weeks of being 'Plant Strong' and feeling great! It hasn't been easy, but it's been a great adventure so far. I had Broadway Cafe and Green Sprout again this past week. We had a family breakthrough when IronSherpa asked for Green Sprout on Friday night. Couldn't believe my husband asked for vegetarian, pretty cool I must say.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Plant Powered Coach


Since my last update, I was honored to be asked to be a Triathlon Coach for Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Georgia Team in Training Summer Team. I'm so thrilled - having coached for TNT in TN in 2009 and just finished Ironman 2011 raising money for LLS it's great to be coaching for GA. As most people know, this is a volunteer position so I'm balancing my full time job, family and coaching. It's been great. It's so thrilling to watch people you coach make strides! I helped coach a swim clinic Tuesday night and to watch the group from the beginning of the clinic and see their improvements by the end of the 3 hour clinic, it was amazing. I was jumping up and down on the side of the pool with joy!

My workouts have been going well. I was wondering how my nutrition changes would impact my training and so far, no problem. I've felt better than normal and have been sleeping great. What have I been eating? Tons of vegetables as you would think. Mostly mixed with brown rice and some sauce. I have made some energy bars with beans, agave nectar, peanut butter and oats and that's what I've had when I'm in a pinch for time. Still mainly steel cut oats for breakfast, lunch is usually a veggie burger with roasted vegetables on top and dinner has been a variety of things really, udon noodles, rices, tempeh and/or faux meat.

 Picture is my Dinner tonight: Trader Joe (TJ) Brown Rice, TJ Stir Fry Veggies, Field Roast Grain Mexican Chipotle crumbled. Cheap, easy, delicious and FAST!

I've eaten at a few restaurants here that have been vegan friendly. By my work there is Broadway Cafe and that is REALLY good. I've also tried the tofu scramble with mushrooms and peppers at Flying Biscuit and then last night we had dinner at Green Sprout and I had Kung Pao "Chicken'". Green Sprout is Vegetarian so they have almost every Chinese type dish just made with soy 'meat' or Tofu. Brad has been a trouper, he tried the General Tso "Chicken" and seemed to like it. The last time that I had been to Green Sprout I was with my friend Paige and we had made a pact that we were going to sign up for Ironman Arizona. That was our serious lunch where we were doing all of the pros/cons of signing up and deciding if we were serious or not about doing the race. I'd say we were - I did IMAZ in 2011, Paige didn't get in as she kept getting bumped out of the sign up and it closed in 10 minutes. Not one to let that stop her, she signed up for Ironman CDA 2012 which is in June (I'm volunteering for the race so I can help cheer her on up close). 

This week I'm looking forward to keeping the intensity up on workouts and exploring more vegan options for food! My workout song last week that kept me pumped was Usher, You Don't Have to Call. I hadn't listened to it in ages and it really got me pumped up for a few runs so we'll see what I dig up from the past this week. I'm still on Chris Brown's Beautiful People too.