Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Lake Hayes Christmas Triathlon, in a few words.

There's always very little to say about a Sprint triathlon: I went as hard as I could given my fatigue levels, I improved on last year's time, and I got 9th female in the open category. Some of New Zealand's top guns came out, including pros Nikki Samuels, Jamie Whyte, etc. Sweeeeet.

The swim was a touch choppy, the winds had picked up. The bike was windy as all hell. Power numbers were embarrassingly low due to....
1. Some big training last week, culminating on a Christmas Day "breakdown session", where I ended up off the bike with nothing left, realizing I still had a 10k brick run to... well, "run". I distinctly remember running into friends on the trails and waving my arms about, saying I had no idea how I was going to make it home and they replied: "What? Your home is just 2k away..." Yes, I was done.
2. Half the time, in the crosswinds, I'd have to get out of the aerobars and physically push my bike into the ground to prevent being sideswept.
And the run... I ran it. Far below LTHR, but with good form. That's what is most important to me right now. Loved the heat, saw people wilting and crushed them. As usual, no girls passed me on the run and I passed quite a few.

So... all in all... about a 5 minute improvement over last year's time, in tougher (windier, hotter) conditions and with lower HR averages (as a result of increasing fatigue from training). Cool beans. It'll get there. I'm entered in the Outside Sports Ultimate Tri Series, mainly with the intention of learning how to "go hard".

Jan 14: Jack's Point Tri. 500m swim, 20k road bike, 5k off-road run
Feb 19: Paradise/Glenorchy triathlon. 750m swim, 18k mtb, 6k run
Mar 17: Moke Lake tri. 750m swim, 20k mtb, 6k run
Apr 6: Lake Hayes Easter tri. 750 swim, 20k road bike, 5k off-road run

The boy toy was my sherpa for the day. He did a greaaaat job.  
Pre-race... Einstein is READY FOR THIS SHIT. 
And we go... 
Been working on run form... now just need to keep building
strength in the new positioning. 
After the race, we made out way to Queenstown for the obligatory post-race Fergburgers, where we accidentally got 3 instead of 2, back to Lake Hayes for the prize-giving, to the QT pool for a 1.5hr swim session, and back home to relax and eat delicious fruit salad as the sun set over our mountains. It's been a goooood Christmas week.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Pretty Photos 009 - A new view

I've seen Stevenson's Arm, The Peninsula and down the Clutha River a million times, but sometimes you stumble upon a new view of the things you see every day and you have to look twice, take a photo or two, because hot damn it's even more beautiful today than all previous days, combined.

Who's excited for Christmas?? We're going to have perfect days up until next Sunday: fine, light winds, sunny, around 26-27C. 

My plan for Christmas Day: 
- Race simulation of the Challenge Wanaka half bike course (90k), and transition run. Should give me an idea of what I can put together next month for the half-iron. Everyone is going to be huuuuung over from the previous eve; roads should be empty. Damn, can't wait!!!
- Leg soak in the lake, river or creek post-ride/run
- Spend the rest of the day recovering, opening presents, making fabulous food and eating it with the boy toy. I think we're shooting a rabbit for dinner! Jetboating?

Two days later I've got the Lake Hayes Christmas Sprint triathlon, one of the oldest triathlons in New Zealand (1982 or '83?), sweeeeeet. Did it last year in downpour conditions, legendary.

Oh, and apparently I twitter now (tweetered?): @krystynag47
Not sure how to use it though.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Now sponsored by: TRAINING PEAKS, baby!!

I am excited to shout that, for the next year, I am sponsored by the one, the only: TrainingPeaks!

I am part of their 2012 Athlete Ambassador program! Boom, baby!! The team was announced today, link here.

I've been training using the TrainingPeaks software for going on almost two years now (Feb 2012 will be my two year anniversary, celebration time!!!). Sometimes I forget that there are athletes out there that don't use TrainingPeaks to analyze their day-to-day workouts, their week-to-week training and their month-to-month and season-to-season progression.

I remember starting out as a triathlete (i.e. I flopped around in the pool year-round, only biking and running in the 3 months that Canadians call spring-summer-fall), and I used BeginnerTriathlete to log my workouts. For a beginner, the website is totally awesome and I still do love browsing the forums for some laughs, some knowledge, and the sexy sexy classifieds. But, there came a point when:

1. I needed a way of analyzing more than just week-to-week volume. I needed to see what had to be done in the future, record what I had just completed, and analyze what had been achieved in the past. KEY TO SUCCESS!
2. I needed a way of communicating with a coach, without him crying his eyes out because I was calling him daily. ENTER TRAINING PEAKS.

Anyway, long story dramatically cut short, I already knew 2012 was going to be awesome because:
- I am loving being back training and racing in New Zealand
- I am going to travel throughout the United States yet again in their summer, and experience the joy of the Whole Foods parking lot once more
- Many many 70.3s and 1 full IM of racing, yay!

And now...
- Representing Training Peaks, hoping to improve their software via personal-use feedback

Monday, December 12, 2011

Pretty Photos 008 - Lakeside running

We've got some massive lakes on the South Island, and I'm just beginning to explore outside of the Wanaka region. Undulating trail running along the edge of Lake Hawea., represent!!

Silver Island!

Rather wide 4WD-type tracks. I much prefer narrower mtb
tracks but the views alone are to die for! 


Monday, December 5, 2011

Sometimes, it's not about "training"

Sometimes it's about being stuck indoors working all day, rushing home from work and NEEDING to go for a bike ride because the day was so perfect, you couldn't experience it, so here's your last chance before it ends.

Ended work at 6pm, out riding at 6:30pm for just shy of 2 hours on empty Sunday roads (maybe 5 cars passed me?), and we still had another hour and a bit of daylight after that. Although I do love mornings, the way that the setting sun hits the mountains, leaving some ridges in darkness and others in blinding light, well that's just heaven.

Rest week is done -- time to go up up up until Lake Wanaka half-iron taper, then race baby race January 21st!