Pedal it out!

Monday morning was rough.  But one of the things I learned on the TransAm with Bike the US for MS was that it only takes about 12 miles to ride out whatever is ailing you.  I’m not sure this works for actual illness but if you are just having a slow start, if you drank a little too much the night before, if you have a lot on your mind or if you just can’t find the motivation to do anything, my advice is get over it.  Get on the bike.  Put the running shoes on.  Put the leash on the dog.  Grab your swimsuit.  No matter what the activity is that you choose to do, get your act together and start.  Commit to a shorter ride, walk, run or swim.  I can not start to count the number of times that I have been in the laziest mood ever, jumped on the bike and my day was transformed.

Monday morning my ride was scheduled for 10:30am.  At 8:44am, I sent a text:  “Sorry.  There is no way I can ride today.”  At 8:56am:  “Maybe I can ride.  I’ll check back in with you at 9:45.” At 9:48am:  “See you at 10:30 or 10:45.  Getting ready” At 10:27am:  “I’m on my way”

What happened in between all those texts?  An all-out civil war in my brain.  But I knew that the moment I started riding, I’d feel fine.  I knew that it was a beautiful day outside, not too cold, not hot at all and not too windy outside.  The world set up a perfect day of riding.  All it took was a short walk with Toby to see how great it was outside.

Christy and I rode 23 miles with two stops that day.  Stop 1 was at the Valley Cafe for coffee (my one requirement for this ride to happen).  Stop number 2 was at the Suisun Valley Wine Co-Op.

After that ride, I was ready to crush the rest of the day.  Stopped by In-Shape for a great workout and recovery in the sauna.

Yet another example of my bike turning my day around.

Suisun Valley Wine Ride ????

Swim Drills 0-1650 Week 3

You might be wondering why we are at Week 3 still.  During week 2 of the training, I started dry land workouts, mostly lifting weights.  Since I’ve never really done any of that before, I have been having a lot of soreness.  A lot.  Some days I could barely move my arms, and others I could barely squat on the toilet (TMI?).  This is getting better, but I focused on recovery and adapting to the new stress that I am putting on my body, so in an effort to help my body adapt, I’ve been backing off my time in the pool.  This week I am back, balancing 4 days of swimming with 3 days of hard workouts.

My week now looks like this:  M Th Fundie Drills, T Fr 0-1650 drills

WEEK three:
400 yards…rest for 12 breaths
200 yards…rest for 10 breaths
4 x 100 yards…rest for 8 breaths
between 100s
4 x 50 yards…rest for 4 breaths 
between 50s
total: 1200 yards

Swim Drills 0-1650 Week 2

Week one was great!  Started out challenging but I settled into a groove.  M W F is spent doing the training plan drills and T Th is spent swimming drills that encourages good fundamentals and form.  It’s a good balance and I’m excited to see where it takes me!

WEEK two:
200 yards…rest for 12 breaths
4 x 100 yards…rest for 10 breaths 
between 100s
4 x 50 yards…rest for 6 breaths 
between 50s
4 x 25 yards…rest for 4 breaths 
between 25s
total: 900 yards

Swim Drills 0-1650 Week 1

This is the zero to one mile training plan for freestyle swimming.  Found online, it’s a progressive training plan to increases the number of laps you swim each week.

I am a beginner and will focusing on form throughout this training program.  I care not about speed, I just want to swim effortlessly and enjoy the entire time in the pool.

Starts out easy, but the trick is the small rest periods in between each lap.


WEEK one (Three Days):
4 x 100 yards (or meters)…rest for 12 breaths between 100s
4 x 50 yards…rest for 8 breaths between 50s
4 x 25 yards…rest for 4 breaths between 25s 

total: 700 yards

Toby & Matthew hike the Cataract Falls Trail!

Toby and I went camping this weekend!  Since it’s summer time, it’s pretty impossible to get a campsite anywhere in the state without a reservation.  Most campsites fill up months before summer even gets here, but thankfully there are a handful of campgrounds available on a first-come, first-served basis.  Two of them are right here, just a little over an hour away from my house on Mt. Tam:  Pantoll Campground and Boonjack Campground are both dog-friendly and offer picnic tables, boxes, water and restrooms (no showers!).   It’s the perfect getaway and offers a TON of hikes right in the area.  Unfortunately the trails that go right through our campground are not dog friendly, so we had to drive a bit to get to the Marin Municipal Water District Land, which allows dogs on leash.

But first, coffee!

The drive should have only been about 20 minutes, but we encountered a road that was closed and didn’t open until 9am, so instead of waiting 90 minutes for it to open, I took a different route, which made the drive about 45 minutes.  We started above the clouds, ended up inside the clouds and then it cleared up for our hike!

Above the clouds!

In the clouds

Toby is ready to hike (Alpine Lake)

The Cataract Falls hike offers a lot of different trails.  To keep it simple, I opted for the almost four mile out and back.  There was a lot of elevation in this hike and since Toby and I haven’t hiked in a while, I thought I’d just stick to this one trail.  The halfway point offers a nice little picnic area with tables and trash cans.  If you want, you can make it a giant loop by adding three other trails that all connect.  We will come back again and add some miles to the hike to see more of the area.  This was a great beginner hike, despite the 1000 feet of elevation.  It was well-maintained with stairs and even rails in some parts.

Also, despite the water levels being pretty tame since it hasn’t rained in a while, the creek and the trickling falls were awesome.  This hike was really calming and was the perfect “reset” that I was looking for!

After our hike, we headed over to Bolinas to check out the very dog-friendly beach.  Bolinas beach is a pretty well kept secret that the locals in Bolinas want to keep that way.  They have a reputation for being not very welcoming to outsiders, but Toby and I had a great time.  This is a beach where dogs can be off-leash, so Toby got to run and play with a few new friends.

It’s a very popular surf spot, in addition to the regulars there were a bunch of kids learning how to surf.  Definitely a sport I’d like to get into in the future.

We chilled on the beach, people watching and playing with other dogs — just a really relaxed, awesome day!  The sun finally came out after noon and then we headed to Stinson Beach for lunch before heading back to camp.

Already planning our next camping getaway!   Have dog, will travel!


Annual PT Test!

Well, tomorrow is the day.  My annual PT test for the Air Force.  I can’t figure out exactly why I get so worked up over this test, which really is a pretty simple test.  Waist measurement, situps, pushups and a 1.5 mile run.  I know I am not alone in the “worry” part of this test even though I really don’t have a reason to be worried.   I think it’s because the AF puts a lot of pressure on folks passing their tests.  People have been kicked out of the Air Force for not meeting the fitness requirements.  And although most of my fitness tends to be cardio based, it still takes a lot of me to run a 10:00 minute or less mile and a half.  That’s pretty fast, for me at least.

So, tomorrow I will wake up and feel nervous and worried because of what “could” happen instead of being confident about a simple test that I really have no problem completing.  If I score a 90+ then I don’t have to test for a year.  If I’m under 90 (which happened to me one time with an 89) then I test in 6 months.

Last year’s score = 99

So, I’m making pasta for the carbs and going to bed early.  Tomorrow is going to be a fun day!

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