4:30 or Bust: A Quest for Marathon Mediocrity

Posts Tagged ‘swimming

Starting to taper for New York City Triathlon

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Have started scaling back the bike rides and runs, in preparation for the New York City Triathlon, in 8 days!  I will still be swiming hard over the next week, since my swimming is so bad.  Swam twice this past week, but prior to that, it had been a month since I last swam.  Yesterday morning swam about a half mile, and it really wiped me out.  Made sure several of my laps were side stroke and back stroke, both of which I’ll be using a lot to get through the 1500 meters swim portion next Sunday.  I’ll plan to swim twice again this week, perhaps Monday and Thursday.

This morning, did a 4 mile run down to East River Park and back.   Will run once or twice again this week, but nothing more than 5 miles.  Will probably get 1 easy bike ride in this week as well.

I’m curious to see what the swim is going to be like in the Hudson River.  My assumption was that the river flowed from north to south, but that is not the case.  It is a tidual estuary, which means that it flows both north and south, depending on the tide.  From what I’ve read, the flow is south when between high and low tide, and the flow is north when between low and high tide.  For next Sunday, low tide is 7am, and my start time will be close to 7:30.  So, it will be starting to move to high tide, which I think means I’ll be swimming against a slight current.  The way the staging works, the elites and most of the women start  prior to 7am, and the men have the later start times, mostly after 7am.

Still really nervous about the swim, and how it might then negatively affect the rest of my race, but super excited as well.

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Written by SCL

July 18, 2009 at 9:12 am

Hill Repeats in Central Park

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The twist… on my bike, not on my feet!  First time I’ve done hill repeats on my bike.

I only have 19 days till the New York City Triathlon, and think I need a little more hill work on my bike.  So, last night, biked out to Central Park, did 3 hard repeats of Harlem Hill, and then a full loop of the park, including the hill again.  In all, it was about 17 miles.  Feeling great today, with the exception of my constantly nagging knee and groin.  Good news on the groin is that I found a stretch online that works the exact muscle causing me the most pain.  Trying to do that stretch once a day.  Still keeping it firmly in check.  Tendinitis in my knee is not as bad as it had been, and I’m continuing to ice it, and focus on lower body exercises at the gym.

Had a couple of other good workouts over the last week.

Ran 5.9 miles over the Williamsburg Bridge and back on Sunday morning.  It was a beautiful morning.  About 66 degrees with low humidity.  The sun was strong though, and was tiring on the bridge.  I had to stop at a bodega for water, which would not be necessary in cooler temps.  The bridge was not too crowded, and it was cool to see 3 other runners both times I crossed the bridge.  Guess I wasn’t the only one doing that workout!

On Saturday morning, I did a long bike ride at my house in New Jersey, from Little Silver to downtown Freehold and back.  Came out to about 29 miles.  The return trip was done about 7 minutes faster, I think because of the wind, and also I think the return trip has more downhills.  Length of the bike portion of the olympic distance triathlon (24.4 miles) does not scare me at all anymore!  As I mentioned, I just think I should work on hills a little more.

Also got a run in midweek last week.  It was on Thursday night, when it kept raining on and off.  Rained hard for my first 2 miles, which helped keep me cool in the humidity.  Overall, had a nice 4.6 mile run.

Just trying to keep on keeping on, in spite of the ‘discomfort’ in my knee and groin.  Very excited about the upcoming New York City Triathlon.  Biggest issue for me is swimming.  I have not been in the pool since my last sprint triathlon in Harriman State Park 3 weeks ago, and of course, the pool I go has been closed for the last week for renovations.  It opens tomorrow, so tomorrow, I will need to go swimming!

Written by SCL

July 7, 2009 at 7:58 am

A Race With No (Good) Name

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Most races we run in have nice catchy names, worst case named after city or location (New York City Marathon, Austin Marathon, Brooklyn Half Marathon, etc), and in the best case, a wonderfully creative name (Grandma’s Marathon, Flying Pig Marathon, and my new favorite, Slacker Half Marathon).  A quick check at Daily Mile shows the following races happening on Sunday, all with nice names:

  • Spring Lake 5
  • 9th Annual Delaney Dash
  • 100 Miles of Nowhere
  • Together for Derek 5K
  • Great Hudson River Swim

The names of the races make it real easy to talk about, and to Google Search to see what other people are saying about the race.

I really would like to talk about my upcoming sprint triathlon, organized by New York Triathlon Club, on June 14, but the name is just not one that is easy to type, and it definitely does not roll off the tongue.  I guess what confuses matters is that they run both a triathlon and a biathlon at the same time.  The wonderful name: NY TRI/BI-ATHLON SERIES #1.  Isn’t that just so original!  All kidding aside, NYTC does put on wonderful events.  I’ve twice run their biathlons in Central Park, and would love to do more of their races if I had the time.  One does need to think ahead though, as the best races, especially the ones in Central Park, do sell out early.

Name aside, I’m super excited about the race.  This sprint distance triathlon will be a perfect tune up for the New York City Triathlon in late July – .5 mile swim, 16 mile ride, and then a 3 mile run.  It is in Harriman State Park, which I’m sure will be beautiful at that time of year.  Only problem is that it is a bit of a hike from NYC, starts early on Sunday morning, and I’m committed to picking up my sister-in-law and family at JFK the night before.

With the triathlon in mind, I made it to the gym this morning to swim in the pool.  First morning workout in a long time.  My 7 year old is off from school today and tomorrow, which freed up the time for a morning workout.  And a nice workout it was – actually swam 20 full laps of the pool, which I think is close to the half mile distance of the race.  My swim technique is awful, which, from a glass half full perspective, can only get better!  If I can get to the pool twice per week before the race, then I’ll have a good 5-6 workouts to figure out how to make it work.

Next up though, the Brooklyn Half Marathon, next Saturday, with it’s newly redesigned course.  More on that another time…

Written by SCL

May 21, 2009 at 6:21 pm

Posted in swim, triathlon

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Swimming on the brain

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Made it to the gym tonight to swim.  My wife got home from her work event earlier than expected and I was able to sneak out.  Didn’t have enough time to lift weights first, but that is OK.  It was my first time in the pool in over 2 weeks.  Still very, very shaky, trying to get used to breathing for prolonged periods in the water.  Starting to work in real freestyle stroke while breathing.  I totally lost track of how many laps I did, so we’ll just call it 10 round trips, or 400 yards.

The pool was a bit crowded and my lane was being shared with 2 other people, much faster than me.  Was very disconcerting.  Much better for me when the pool is not crowded!

Signed up for a tune up triathlon, June 14 in Harriman State Park – http://www.nytc.org/dbacceptance.cfm?ID=6.  1/2 mile swim, 16 mile bike, 3 mile run.  Looking forward to it – should be a great tune up for the New York City Triathlon.

Written by SCL

March 30, 2009 at 10:00 pm

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Blogging outdoors!

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It is still kinda cold outside, 40 degrees, but I’ve got spring on the brain and so am walking downtown to pick my 13 year old from dance class.  Stopped off at Madison Square Park to take advantage of the free wi-fi to kill some time.  Funny, last time I did this, I also had weather on the brain.  The answer to the question I posed back then is that the weather in Austin in Feb is wonderful!

On a more serious note, had a visit to my doctor today.  I’m used to dealing with running injuries, but lately having a health issue.  Nothing to be concerned about, and 2-4 weeks of Cipro will hopefully kill the bacterial infection my doctor suspects I have.  We’ll see!

Otherwise, had a great workout lifting weights at the gym last night.  Had another pathetic swim session in the pool, but I can already see some small improvements after 3 visits.  I still have 4+ months to get myself up to swimming a mile before the New York City Triathlon.

Probably will stay inactive tonight, and maybe drag myself out of bed for an early run in the morning.

Written by SCL

March 12, 2009 at 6:04 pm

Getting my bike and swim on

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Time to start focusing on the swim and bike portions of the triathlon as I start training for the New York City Triathlon, coming up late July.

Took a couple of big steps today.  First, took my bike into Metro Bikes to get a tune up.  In addition to basic free tune up I get from purchasing my bike there, I’m also getting the more extensive ‘drivetrain’ tune up.  I want them to do a good cleaning of my chain and a good thorough check of everything else.  I’m also getting the handlebars retaped.  One of these days, it will warm up and I’ll start getting some rides in.  I think we change the clocks next weekend, which means we’ll start getting daylight till 7pm – can’t wait.

I also went to the gym tonight and went in the pool for the first time in about 8 months.  I am a really bad swimmer, and I’m essentially starting from the very beginning.  Did about 18 pool lengths in a variety of bad forms, but trying to work on breathing, which is my big weak spot.

Will be running in the Coogan’s 5k race tomorrow morning.  Forecast is for rain, sleet or snow, so we’ll see what happens.  This is a very fast 5k course due to the hills, especially the downhill in the last half mile.  I’ve set PR’s the last 2 times running the course.  I was hoping for dry conditions so that I can attempt to finish in 25 minutes.  My PR is about 26 minutes.  I just hope the weather is good enough that they don’t turn it into a fun run.  I want to use this to bring down my NYRR corral pace time, which is currently 8:14.

Wow, that session in the pool really wiped me out.  Need to get to bed!

Written by SCL

February 28, 2009 at 10:36 pm

Posted in bike, gym, swim

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