1.23.2015

Ironman Training Glitches continued…

So much for beginning week 2 of IMLP training without glitches. Last week I forgot my swim bottoms so I actually swam one hour in yoga pants. Today I decided to wear my swimwear under my pants and this time I forgot my underwear and a bra for after. This is not cute.

Last season a number of funny and weird things happened throughout training. I wish I had blogged them so I could remember them all. Maybe one day I’ll share the story of when I woke up one day exhausted and confused about why a handful of chocolate chips melted and spread all over my bed sheets…

Do you have any fun stories from training to share? I’d love to start a collection of stories so please send them over!

1.23.2015

Ironman Training Glitches Week 1

Ironman Lake Placid Team for Cures MMRf

Week 1 training for Ironman Lake Placid is already finished, and so far so good! That’s not to say that I didn’t run into a few glitches but I’ll get to that in a moment.  My week only consisted of 11 hours and 5 minutes of training…and that included strength training. The first week pretty much eases you into things and it’s allowed me to focus a lot of energy on mental strength, focusing on each day at a time while getting my mind prepared for what’s ahead. I’ve also focused on my much needed dietary plans and ate really well. My body feels great and of course it’s too soon for any aches. I can’t wait to step it up a little as week two begins tomorrow. So onto the training glitches….

Glitches. Like I said, week 1 was basic so I don’t have much to share. Instead, I’ll let you in on the glitches that came up for me. Have you ever stopped to think about how we create many of the glitches and issues we encounter in our lives?  I pretty much created everything that came up over my first week and while they were minor and silly they all could have been avoided with better preparation.

Day 1.  Attending a funeral on day 1 wasn’t exactly ideal. There will be days ahead where I will have things come up and I knew finding just 1 hour to get started would make me feel happier. Plus, I heard her voice in my mind, flashed back to our final rides together which led up to my first Ironman and knew EXACTLY what she would have said to me on my first day of training.  The people who I’ve recently lost were people who inspired me. Their voices and things they said to me in the past went through my mind on my first run.

Day 2.  Super pissed. First swim of week 1 and I arrive the gym without my swim bottoms. If I go home I won’t come back. I figured my only choice was to destroy one of my favorite pair of yoga pants again. I did this once last year by ripping off the legs so this time I decided to just swim in my pants. Ah, 60 minutes swimming in yoga pants! Hot. Of course I ran into someone I know in the next lane while I looked like a fool. “Bad Brad” laughed at me but I wasn’t making excuses not to swim. Keep it movin’…  It also occurred to me that hopping into the water just after sweaty hot yoga did not feel right. Better reverse this next time. Swim first. Hot Yoga after.

Day 3.  This day started awesome, practicing yoga with triathlete friends. I’m grateful that many of them have practiced with me lately. But then what do you do when it’s 9:00pm, day 3 of Ironman Lake Placid training, and you still haven’t trained today? Suck it up, sweetheart. You still have 3 hours left in the day. Lace up and hit the road. No one made you sign up for this. This was your choice… Here’s what happened on day 3.

Day 4. My swim was great, my bike was great, and hot yoga….. ohhhhh sooooo great that I stayed for a back to back double of 2 1/2 hours of ah-MA-zing challenging sweaty yoga. I left yoga feeling so damn strong and gooooooood. Okay, so no glitches on day 4. Actually, no glitches on day 5 either. Yay!  Let’s skip ahead to day 6.

Day 6.  Am I waking up tired from training on day 6 already? Snooze. Snooze. Snooze. Wait no, it’s not the training. I went out way too late on a Tuesday night. At least it was fun and worth it. I was dragging most of the the day although training was fine and followed by the sweatiest hot yoga class ever last night. I was drenched and felt like I had just finished a swim. I found myself in an elevator with an attractive man on my way home, held my breath and crossed my fingers that my scent would not make this hottie vomit.

Day 7. I opened work emails in the morning and got sucked into them preventing my morning run. Big mistake. At 10:45am I had just enough time to squeeze it in before my noon client call. Unnecessary pressure, however, to race back home to work. I raced out the door so quickly and left very underdressed. Three quarters of a mile into my run I passed my gym and almost went in to run the track. I didn’t want to give in and depend on the indoor track due to my own poor planning so I just kept going. I also had to go to the bathroom minutes after leaving the house and wonder how one forgets to do this before running? Next my battery died and I had no music to push me through the second half. Didn’t this happen on day 3 too? One should learn. I kept reminding myself that it’s just 60 minutes and there is an end point. My mantra was something like it was on day 2. Keep it movin’ Peach, keep it movin’. KEEP. IT. MOVIN’!  Brrrrrrrr… Even through all of that the run actually went by quick and I felt great the rest of the day.  Squeezed in an extra day of hot yoga tonight too which wasn’t on the plan. Ahhhh….but it feels so good.

So there you have it. Week 1 of my IMLP training brings you nothing interesting. A little boring, I know. At the end of the day what’s most important is that I got it all done. I learned a lot from these tiny glitches and this first week reminded me how important it is to prepare and plan. Just a few minutes of preparation could make all the difference in each day of training ahead. Ready for week 2…

1.19.2015

Yoga with triathlon buddies

yoga for triathletes

This stuff excites me! Over the past few weeks nine friends have joined me for yoga and six of them are from triathlon club. It makes me so happy to have these friends practice with me and share something that’s made such a different for me. It also makes me happy to see people open to trying something new and perhaps something a little outside their comfort zone. I wanted to share this recent message from a triathlon club friend that made me smile. Remember that there’s so many different kinds of yoga so if you’re considering it you will likely have to try a few to find which yoga fits your goals. I always tell people try four or five classes before making any judgements. And for the record…I didn’t feel a darn thing until I took my 5th yoga class. In fact, I disliked yoga when I first tried it. And now?  Who would have guessed that I’d become a yoga instructor. Tah dah…. yoga is my passion. I love this stuff. Swim, bike, run, YOGA, baby…. 

“Keli, Thanks again for inviting me to the class. I was kind of put-off by yoga because I signed up for several classes at work a few years ago and didn’t feel like I got anything out of it. I definitely felt some benefits yesterday and would like to try and work it into my weekly workout routines. Anything I can do to help my hamstrings is needed.” 

Funny this photo of me was taken by Art+ Life before I even owned a bike.

1.19.2015

Ironman Lake Placid Training Day 3

Ironman Lake Placid training plan

What do you do when it’s 9:00pm, day 3 of Ironman Lake Placid training, and you still haven’t trained today? Suck it up, sweetheart. You still have 3 hours left in the day. Lace up and hit the road. No one made you sign up for this. This was your choice…

If I planned my day better I would have ran before meeting friends for yoga this morning or at least before studying. 8:45pm rolled around, I was tired, and debated making excuses. Instead, I headed downstairs to hop on the treadmill but darn it…the gym in my building now closes Sundays at 8:00pm.  No choice now but to run at night in the wet chilly weather.  I guess it could be worse than 30 degrees and raining, right? Three blocks into my run I started envisioning the 15 mile runs that are in my near future and wondering how I did this last year. “Focus on today,”  I kept reminding myself. Ten blocks later my battery died leaving me without music. How will I run one hour without stopping when I have no music? Oh please… if I can run 26.2 miles without music in the past I can certainly run a pathetic 60 minutes without it tonight. I kept telling myself  ”Get your mind right!” and eventually 20 minutes in I knew this tiny goal would be no problem. 10:00pm and mission accomplished.  Clearly I didn’t plan well today and ran into some unnecessary glitches. There were glitches yesterday too. Looks like I’ve learned a few lessons already over the past three days of very basic training. Ready to rock it tomorrow.

1.18.2015

Childbirth Education Instructor Study Day

Hypnobabies childbirth education instructor

One of these books is not like the others, one of these books just doesn’t belong, can you tell which book is not like the others by the time I finish my song? I can’t help but laugh as I have that song from Sesame Street in my mind looking at this picture. Which one is it? I snuck in an Ironman book incase I need to take a break.

How did I think starting Ironman Lake Placid training and Hypnobabies Childbirth Education Instructor training in the same week was a good idea? I’m equally excited about both and have promised myself not to get overwhelmed or stressed over two things I’m extremely passionate about.  I haven’t quite figured out when I will work, when I will train and when I will study but it’ll come together. I haven’t studied in years and I’m pretty sure the last course I studied for was my DONA birth doula training. Alright, time to focus and hit the books on this rainy Sunday afternoon.

1.17.2015

Ironman Lake Placid 2015 Day 1 Training

Ironman Lake Placid 2015 MMRF Team for Cures

My first Ironman had me floating for weeks. It was my one and only, although after such an incredible experience I just had to do one more now that I understood what I was getting myself into. But then my second and last Ironman hadn’t even arrived before saying what the heck… I’ve got to commit to Ironman Lake Placid 2015, my third and NO LONGER FINAL Ironman,  IMLP is the first Ironman of the US aside from Kona, of course, and I’m so thrilled to have a chance to participate in this race. Let me tell you, Ironman is one of those experiences that screams, “Keep going!” I simply can’t remember any experience in my life that resembles Ironman. It’s been beautiful, challenging, motivating, humorous, inspirational, and oh so much more than just a race. Nearly every day of training offers a surprise or lesson. Sometimes good and sometimes not so good but when you put it all together at the end of the days it’s all part of one very incredible life experience.  I volunteered the finish line at Ironman Lake Placid 2014 and remember how inspired I felt and the feeling of those chills that ran down my body as I visualized myself crossing that same finish line one day. The very next day I learned that the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation is the official IMLP charity partner and I was in!  

Day 1 is here!  Ironman Lake Placid 2015 training officially started today. I am so excited for this next year of triathlon and to begin training for Ironman on the Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Team For Cures.  I am extremely grateful for all of the support and encouragement I received throughout my first year of triathlon in 2014 and look forward to sharing this next experience with many of you. I have so many new goals and know that I have a ton ahead to learn. I also know that the journey will be both exciting and challenging. I do not think that just because I’ve finished two Ironmans that I can just get out there and finish a third. It doesn’t work like that. I have to make a choice to commit to training. It takes dedication, determination, passion and I have to want it. I have to believe in myself. I have to be prepared for the unknown and the obstacles which will occur over the next 6 months. Obstacles in life are inevitable though. No one trains without “stuff” coming up along the way. The key is to just keep going, do the very best I can and to enjoy the process as much as possible. I know some training days may seem like a struggle but there won’t be a single day ahead that I don’t remind myself that this experience is filled with so much opportunity. We choose what to focus our energy on. I will chose to focus my energy on the opportunity this experience offers. Success is a mindset within us.  So many things that seem impossible are actually within our reach. Isn’t that their slogan by the way? “Ironman: Anything is possible.”

Day 1 Training. Today was perhaps not an ideal or easy day to begin training. I know that there will be plenty of days ahead where I will have opportunities and reasons to make excuses or skip training. Training is simply another part of my life now for the next six months so I was not going to make an excuse to push back my first day. Plus, I heard her voice in my mind, flashed back to our final rides together which led up to my first Ironman and know EXACTLY what she’d say to me today if she was here. The first week of training is light and just easing into things. Phew, because I must confess that these past three months my workouts have been nothing compared what I put into my training last year.  I think getting the mind right is one of the most important things to focus on over week one. My mindset while training felt really strong today even though the plan only had me run 40 minutes, bike 45 minutes, and hot vinyasa yoga 75 minutes which I added to the plan.  And by the way, yes–it looks like I’m finally following my first triathlon training plan (within reason) which I’m really looking forward to. It doesn’t surprise me that the first song on my playlist had me take off a bit too fast on my run because it’s from one of my favorite Ironman videos.  And yup, I visualized it. And then visualized myself racing IMLP. So anyways…in addition to the training plan nutrition is one of the things I need to better educate myself on. Believe it or not I packed on 10 pounds over the course of my first year in triathlon. Yup. I’d like to work on losing 10% of my current body weight by the time race day arrives.

I’ve focused 2660 minutes on my yoga mat in the past 30 days in preparation for Ironman training. I’ve become very aware of the tremendous growth and strength physically and mentally over these 44 hours of consistent yoga practice. I’ve also noticed “bad habits” dissolve on my mat and grace develop gradually. The past 30 days have definitely played a positive roll in preparing my body and mind for the six months ahead. I’m committed to incorporating at least 3 hours of yoga into my training plan each week, even if that means I miss a few miles of a run from time to time just to squeeze it in. Yoga is an essential part of my training plan and perhaps just as important as swim, bike and run.

The goals ahead of me? Train for 6 months, improve my nutrition, keep consistent with yoga, and then swim 2.4 miles, bike 112 miles, and run 26.2 miles and raise at least $5,000 for the MMRF.  So why is this Ironman so incredibly important to me?  One of my family members lives with Multiple Myeloma and I will race with the MMRF team for her and everyone who is faced with the challenges of MM. I will also race in memory of a good friend who very recently passed away from a different form of cancer. Multiple Myeloma is the second most common form of blood cancer and has one of the lowest five-year relative survival rates of all cancers. While there is no cure, great progress is being made. My commitment is to increase awareness and raise funds to help find a cure. I feel really fortunate to be able to take the next step pursuing something I have fallen in love with to make a difference and race on the MMRF Team for Cures.

I know that I can not do this alone and so here it goes…I’m about to ask you for your help.  I am asking family, friends, readers, and everyone in the yoga and triathlon community to please support my participation in the 2015 IRONMAN Lake Placid benefiting the MMRF. Your donation is tax-deductible and will go directly toward the research and development of a cure for cancer. I realize and understand we all have charities we are passionate about so keeping that in mind I just want to mention that any amount, even $5, adds up.  And think about this… if every friend I have on Facebook donated $10 think about how much we would contribute to the MMRF through just one person’s efforts. I appreciate your help to get there.  Contributions can be made here. Thank you for your support and generosity and many thanks to everyone who already supported my efforts before my training even kicked off. I am so incredibly grateful and excited to be part of the Ironman Lake Placid MMRF team! I will continue to update my training and fundraising progress on my blog and appreciate everyone’s feedback and support. See you in 189 days at 140.6.

Love, Keli  ”The most effective way to do it, is to do it..” Amelia Earhart.

 

1.16.2015

Here one day. Gone the next.

Here one day. Gone the next.  It seems like there’s been too many of these lately. Funerals. An event that none of us wish to be attending.  Each of them recently have left far too early.  I think it’s important to feel and acknowledge the pain and sorrow of death which we all experience as part of life. Running away from the pain and refusing to talk about it to numb the pain only makes it grow deeper. Life, at times, can take you so far out of your comfort zone that there is nothing you can do or say to make things better. You simply just be with it for some time. I’ve responded differently to each of the recent passings, all of whom have left far too young. I’m writing this in the moments following today’s funeral of a friend who died suddenly this week and while I don’t have much to say I feel like I should be saying something. Because I care.

Life is truly fragile and short. Everybody experiences loss at some time in their life. Loss is an inevitable part of life, but that doesn’t make it easy. To those who are experiencing the loss and grief of family or friends at this time I wish you lots of love and I hope you will feel the strength and love from many people around you who care about you.

To the ones who have left…Thank you for who you were and are to me. I will always remember each one of you.

With love and light,

Keli

1.16.2015

Doula Days. Happy Birthday.

Philadelphia doulas

“I think my water just broke.”  I remember the call and her first words so clearly at 9:30pm on January 14 a few years ago. Today brings back lots of memories from the first birth I attended as a birth doula.  Just shy of two weeks to her estimated due date I received my first call from a laboring mama and soon enough we were off to the birth centerSunrise Baby Boy was born the following morning on January 15, naturally, 7 pounds 7 ounces, just before sunrise at 5:51am. And so began my doula days. I worked my very first birth as a volunteer and remember the details like it was yesterday. Mama and her son will always be very special to me and I’m happy we’ve stayed in touch.

Working as birth doula requires being on call, sometimes leaving the house in a matter of minutes, and often very long hours (think 20-30+ straight hours) although it’s just full of wonder and miracles to me. I take a few births a year on a volunteer or sliding scale basis for special circumstances and those who truly desire the support of a birth doula. This evening I received a request from another doula looking for a volunteer for a birth this spring. I only heard the first sentence and agreed to be her doula if she feels comfortable with me.  It makes me happy to accept a volunteer birth on the anniversary of my very first birth. Later this evening I worked a prenatal with my newest (and super cool) doula clients who are expecting any day now. They are having their baby girl at the same location as the first birth I attended too which I think is pretty cool. This mama plans to share a little about her birth experience with us in just a few weeks.

My doula days this week have felt extra meaningful.  I’ve also had the opportunity to work nights as a postpartum doula reconnecting with another very special birth doula client and sweet baby boy born almost 6 months ago. As I held him last night he grabbed my hand and held it taking my memory back to the day he was born. I still shake my head some days finding it hard to believe I am fortunate to work in a field I am so passionate about. Working as a birth professional is by far one of the most fulfilling things I have done with my life and I am still amazed every single time I see a baby take his or her first breath. Thank you to all of you who have given me the opportunity to work with you as your birth doula. And happy birthday,  T.J.

 

1.14.2015

Banana-Walnut Yogurt Muffins

 

healthy banana walnut muffins

I made these Banana-Walnut Yogurt Muffins last night around midnight. I’m working nights this week and really enjoying the opportunity. This recipe adapted from Women’s Health is quick to put together and turned out pretty tasty. These muffins are nutritious and great for breakfast. You can always add a handful of chocolate chips if you prefer a more dessert-like muffin.  I usually have a thing for bananas with chocolate chip when it comes to baking but I actually like this recipe without the chocolate. I’m thinking about doing a similar recipe this week with raspberries and blueberries. Hope you enjoy these midnight muffins. It’s 6:30am so good‪ morning and good night. I’m off to sleep.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 C oatmeal
  • 1/2 C brown or white rice flour
  • 1/4 C ground flaxseed
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 C plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 medium ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/4 C honey
  • 1/4 C pure maple
  • 1/3 C coconut oil
  • 1/4 C walnut pieces
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  • Optional: add 1/4 cup chocolate chips

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • In a large bowl, whisk together oatmeal, flour, flaxseed, baking powder, and baking soda.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs and combine with yogurt, bananas, honey, and oil.
  • Add flour mixture and fold in walnuts.
  • Divide batter into paper-lined muffin cups
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly touched
  • Cool on a wire rack.

Makes 12 muffins

1.13.2015

It’s been awhile.

Philadelphia Triathlon

I’ve been dreading my first swim in a long time since it’s so cold outside. Getting into the water, even though it’s indoors, doesn’t excite me when it’s chilly out there. But what a great surprise today. The water at Sporting Club Bellevue almost felt warm for my first swim in um…I can’t confess how long only because John, a Philly tri friend, is probably reading this ;)

My decision to finally hop back into the pool today was a combination of two things.  This week I’m working nights 9:00pm-5:00am so I figured diving back into the water before heading to work would make me really alert. I also swam because Ironman Lake Placid training starts this Friday. My swim was short today but productive. I just wanted to get myself back in there with no pressure so I did not keep track of what I accomplished in my 40 minute swim. I did what I felt like doing and visualized a lot. Visualizing my training ahead…my goals…my hopes…you know…. I am just as excited to start training as I was for family vacations as child. See you in three days when things start to get more serious… “If you have a lane you have a chance” Unknown

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