Monday, June 26, 2006

Training on Vacation

If there's one thing I love, it's training whenever we travel. It's always so cool to go running or swimming someplace new, and on this trip I managed to bring my bike as well, so I got to experience some of Canada's back roads and bike trails.

We took last week and went on vacation up to Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada. Spent several days camping and then a couple of days in Victoria. The weather was beautiful, and apparently Canadian schools let out a week after the U.S. ones, so the campgrounds were empty, and Lake Cowichan was devoid of speedboats and waterskiers. Unfortunately, it was also devoid of enough degrees fahrenheit for me to swim out very far. Near shore, it was just barely warm enough, even with my wetsuit on, for me to stop hyperventilating enough to swim a couple of thousand yards, back and forth along the shore. When I attempted to swim out further (I just can't resist the pull of an empty lake!), my lungs felt like they were being crushed by the cold, and I had to turn around.

Fortunately, my daughter spotted this gigantic crawdad, right before it was about to attack my foot. I swear, this thing was like 8 inches long. Like a little lake lobster or something. I've never seen a crawdad this big - they grow them big up north, I guess!
I got in a nice bike ride on Cowichan River road, although from our campground it was seriously uphill, right off the bat (nothing like a 15 percent grade on legs that aren't even warmed up yet!) and a run on trails by the campground.
In Victoria, I took a run on the Galloping Goose trail, along the riverfront out of town. The dragonboat teams were all practicing, so I got to run to the accompaniement of beating drums and the slap of oars in the water. I also took a really nice bike ride along the waterfront and around the tip of the island. With views like these of the Olympic mountains, the miles just seem to roll on by. I will say though that the drivers were less than bike-friendly. I think I had more near-misses in 25 miles of Victoria's roads than I've had all year here in my bike-friendly town. Still, it was a great vacation and a great opportunity to train in some really beautiful countryside.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

No Acronyms Here

I've been reading other Ironman blogs (suprisingly, there aren't many) in hopes of finding inspiration, humor, etc. in this crazy plan. But everyone else seems so serious, not to mention, so acronym-filled, they're darn near unreadable. Most blogs go something like:

Did 70 km LB today. 5 rps 3 min Z2 with 2 min spin @ 45 min. HR output 125 av. peak 152
Pool intervals 10 x 100 yd @ 1:35, 5 x 250, 20 sec r. Peak HR 160, av. 135

Meanwhile, I'm just going on a bike ride, and maybe a swim. Yeah, I do intervals, and I even bought myself a heart rate monitor, but mostly I train how my body feels and try to just enjoy the experience. My long bike this week was 2:20, but my Ironman race is late in the season (Nov 4), so I've got plenty of time to ramp up those distances. Summer is here and the warm weather feels great for biking.