Thursday, January 12, 2017

End of The Year - Beginning of The Year

How was your 2016? I’ve read a lot of people claiming “good riddance” to the end of last year. Glass half empty people? Of course in every year there will be the good, the bad, and the ugly. Let’s try to concentrate on the good.


I found a fantastic Podcast called “Tower 26 - Be Race Ready”. Gerry Rodriguez has been a swim coach for many years, and coaches a triathlon masters in California. These podcasts are amazing! I listened to them while I was running and then came home and wrote down the “workout of the day” that he outlined. If you’re a triathlete, whether or not you swim with a master’s swim program, do yourself a favor and check it out. A mass of valuable information!

Here is one of my favorite workouts from the Podcasts. I named it the” Foundational Swim” because he outlined it in that particular Phase of the year – here is the main set of the swim, it doesn’t include the warm up, drills, cool down, etc.

                                                EZ      ½ IM      EZ       Fast
                                                100      100       100       100
                                                100      200       100       100   
                                                100      300       100       100
                                                100      400       100       100 

The intervals you want to use for this base from your typical 100. For instance, for me I swim my 100’s on 1:30, this give me anywhere from 5-10 seconds of rest (bringing my 100 in on the 1:20-1:25). The EZ 100s would be your 100 interval plus 20 seconds. Using these numbers, the EZ send offs would be 1:50, and the ½ IM pace and the Fast on 1:30. On round two the ½ IM pace increased to 200 – 3:00. Round three 300 @4:30 etc. If you’re training for an Ironman as the season progresses you could build this to 600. Making the entire main set 3,900.

Okay… next thing that I discovered this past year. This one is very uncomplicated. Blue Dawn dish washing liquid for your hair. WHAT???? Wash my hair in Dawn? Yep… about every 3-4 months I wash my hair in Dawn. It deep cleans your hair, takes out all of the built up product and leaves your hair silky smooth. Of course use your favorite deep conditioner after you wash, leave it on for about 5 minutes. (word of caution for color treated hair – it will lighten your hair).

Speaking of hair, another discovery was TRISWIM shampoo and conditioner. I got some in a race packet and at also at the Masters Coaching Swim Certification that I did a couple months ago. THIS STUFF ROCKS!! If you haven’t tried it you’re missing out. If you’re a Masters Swimmer you get a discount code when you renew or sign up for USMS for the SBR products, which include the TRISWIM shampoo, conditioner, body wash, TRISLIDE, and FOGGIES.

I get a rash on my neck sometimes from the chlorine levels in the pool, and this seems to really help! It detoxifies, hydrates, and nourishes the skin! "Chlorine Out... Nutrients In!"

I mentioned getting my USMS Masters Coaching Certification!  Coaching adults vs. kids – one of pieces of advice that they gave us in the clinic… “Masters swimmers get up in the middle of the night to come and swim, make sure that every day you make a connection with each and every swimmer. It may be a correction in technique, or a simple recognition of a good job, and a Good Morning”. The quickest way to lose adult swimmers is for them to think no one cares that they are there.” Hey… we all need an “at a boy” (or girl). The thing I like the absolute least about a swim coach is when they write a workout on the board and say nothing else during the entire workout. I’m probably on the opposite extreme of this, my swimmers would probably tell me to leave them alone! So whenever the Masters Coach no shows at our practice I get my chance to write the workout! I really miss coaching!! Oh… the other bonus of getting certified is that the folks at TRISWIM reached out to me (as a coach) and asked if I wanted samples for the team!!! Heck yeah! So I was able to get some product for my friends!! BONUS!

ZOGGS Goggles would be on the list of favorite things. I bought two pair, the Athena and the Podium. The Athena is a soft frame, one-piece goggle (meaning the nose piece isn’t adjustable). I didn’t care for these so much, I have a small nose bridge and haven’t had the best of luck with getting a good seal with goggles that don’t come with various nose pieces. I gave them a good try, but they’re living in my swim bag as emergency goggles. But then I tried the Podium goggles!!! They come with 3 nose pieces so you can get the perfect nosebridge width.

These are AWESOME!!! The lenses are super clear (as is with all the Zoggs products – it’s one of the things they’re known for), but the best part is that the nose piece. The ends that snap into the lens are round like a ball, so they swivel almost 180 degrees which means they really contour to the shape of your face. I just love them!


2017 ZOGGS Ambassador!!
So when I saw that ZoggsUSA opened applications for Ambassadors I took a chance and sent it in! And got selected! Sweet!! We haven’t received our Ambassador package yet and they haven’t told us what is expected of us but I am excited to be involved in something related to swim! Ironically, their office is located in Northridge, California. I looked up the address…it is about a mile and a half from our old house in California! We actually used to ride our bikes as kids over to the little strip center where the office is! Go figure!

More good news – I’m back for year 4 with The COBB MOBB!! Most people in the triathlon world have heard of John Cobb and Cobb Cycling. If you’ve followed my blog you’ve seen me post photos at racing in the kit. I refer to him as the GURU of bike aerodynamics! I had the honor of being named The 2016 Cobb Mobb Top Female Performer last year, and I am very excited to be welcomed back for another year with this great team! I got my friend, Jenn to apply and she was selected, too! But… she is moving to Wisconsin this month…. (insert extremely sad face here). So my training partner is gone, this is definitely not good news. I was really looking forward to us representing the Cobb Mobb and representing at the local races.

I’ve ridden on a Cobb saddle from way back in the day when I bought my Javelin bike from him in 1999. Back then he was taking an existing saddle and custom cutting the wings off the back of it, so the hamstrings would not come in contact with the saddle at the back of the pedal stroke. The result was a narrow saddle and you can see it in the original V-Flow. I read people’s questions in tri forums and Facebook pages talking about the width of their sit bones and how they need a wider saddle. In actuality, when you’re in the aero position, your sit bones are not in contact with the saddle – you are rotated forward and you don’t need a wide saddle. In fact, on every pedal revolution if your hamstring at the glute insertion is coming in contact with the saddle it can inflame and irritate the sciatic nerve. Saddle comfort is very individualized, at Cobb Cycling they have a number of different saddles, experts to help you find the best one for you, and a 60 day comfort guarantee.

This past year I finally took the advice and ditched my usual cycling shorts and rode only in my Cobb tri shorts. I’ve suffered with saddle sores for the entire time I’ve been riding, were talking 31 years! Voila, no more saddle sores for me! The bunching of the thick material on regular shorts was the culprit in my case. Cobb Saddle + Cobb Shorts = Pain free riding! If you’re having issues with comfort on your bike you should do yourself a favor and reach out to Cobb Cycling. And if you’re a female they even employ a Women’s Expert so you don’t have to discuss our specific issues with a guy. (903) 253-8555 - ask for Rachel! Check out the website for contact information as well as a lot of great articles about fit and comfort that may help you!

I was also picked to represent HERevolution for 2017. This company has a great backstory. I think Darcy, the owner and founder of HERev says it best:

“Today, HERevolution is solely online offering exclusive HERevolution Apparel. Our focus is to offer you bold, bright designs, maintaining high quality, supporting American made and sizing, while embracing eco friendly choices. Our fabulous partner, Zoca Gear, employs and manufactures here in San Diego, California, uses eco-friendly water base ink, and adheres to true American sizing. This is very important to us at HERevolution. I believe the slight extra cost is worth supporting these ideas.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle is a routine we strive to implement. Every garment is shipped to you in the original packaging from our manufacturer. We use minimal recyclable packaging.

HERevolution celebrates women in sport and every goose bump, tear of joy and adrenaline rush we experience from both our own accomplishments and others. We have a sport that every woman can participate in and it is our heart and soul that brings us together to find camaraderie, friendship, growth and empowerment.

We embrace women sharing the love of our sport, on and off the course. Supporting others' endeavors makes them feel good which makes us feel good. Believe me when I say you will feel “the Love” when you wear HERevolution Gear. So, represent well, and share the love."

#RevItUp Ladies

Major Tom
And last, but not least for 2016… another knee surgery. #groan. In November I sat cross legged painting our deck and the floor of our screened porch. I actually remember thinking that I hadn’t been able to sit like that in a long time. Tiny bit of history – micro-fracture knee surgeries on both knees, the left in 2002, and the right in 2008. I don’t know if I did something to my left knee by sitting like that or not, but the day or so later I felt it buckle, and then swell up. Long story short, the doc found a loose body in my knee, a torn meniscus, and a lot of junk in there from all the years of running and racing. On December 30th I had arthroscopic surgery to debride, do a partial removal of the meniscus, and remove Waldo from my knee. It will be two weeks tomorrow, and I am happy to report that the recovery from this surgery (compared to the micro-fractures) has been a breeze! Hope to be in the pool, and on the bike in the next few days. Running in another week or so! Gotta get ready for the season!!

                           So cheers to 2017! Hope to see you at the races!!

Bye Jenn! :(