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Saturday, January 12, 2008

Wipe Out

Last Sunday I began my day with an awesome swim! After procrastinating half the morning away, I drug myself to the club to get in my last swim of the week. After a slightly sluggish start, I somehow got into my groove & actually pulled off a mile of swimming in 40 minutes - my fastest time ever. In addition, as part of the total swim I managed to string together a straight 400 freestyle - I was totally pumped!

After coming home & taking a quick shower, I hopped on my bike to head out for a 40 miler. I had decided to ride my bike to a Sunday Louisville Bike Club ride - which Kelly was coming on for the first time! Yeah...Although it had rained all day on Saturday, the weather was decent on Sunday - still overcast but pretty warm with the road only wet in spots (I didn't even have to wear tights).

Out the door I had plenty of time to make it to the park on time. I took a slightly hilly/curvy route & was having a great time. Almost to the park (about 20 mins before the group ride start), I turned onto a side rode with multiple sets of RR tracks. I've ridden over these tracks bunches of times so when I briefly considered walking over the 2nd set (because they were wet) I just called myself a wuss & kept going...Next thing I knew, I was lying on the ground & my bike was lying in the mud on the side of the road.
I briefly remembered watching the tracks seemingly grab my front tire & take it in the opposite direction than what I was going. It was like the rails had turned into some kind of giant hand that picked up my bike while throwing me across the road. OUCH!!! This was nothing like those little clipping out accidents I'd had to date. Somehow I managed to land on my head, shoulder, hip & knee - I would love to see a video of how I managed that.

The first thing I did was to look around to see if anyone was watching. Part of me was wishing someone was so they could just take me home & part of me was desperately hoping that no one had seen my complete humiliation. After determining that there was nobody around, I sat up &
took off my helmet. I had actually seen stars when I hit & my head really hurt so it was no surprise to find out that I had cracked my brand new helmet in 5 places. Bummer...Next, I checked out the visible skin on my legs & arms - skinned my left knee & scraped the part of my left thigh below the shorts but not too bad. I stood up & wow - my left hip was absolutely killing me - quick look under the shorts - it was red but no blood. Then I realized that my left shoulder was killing me. You know, the kind of stinging, burning that happened when you fell & scraped up your hands & knees as a kid. Ouchie:( I looked at my jersey which looked fine so decided not to look under it at my shoulder. I stood up, hobbled over to my bike, picking up my lights, phone, sunglasses, jelly beans & all the other things that had been thrown across the road along with my bike. OMG - I suddenly remembered that I was supposed to be at the park to meet Kelly for the ride. I figured I could stand so I should just go ahead & do the last 30 miles of my ride so I gave Kelly a call & told her I might be a few minutes late but to wait or me.

I picked up my bike (it looked like it was in one piece) & tried to hop right on & go. I immediately noticed that something wasn't right - I had knocked my saddle sideways...After straightening it up I tried again - no go, my chain had come off. It was actually difficult to fix since it had kind of gotten stuck in the front derailleur but I was able to pull it loose & get it back on. Good to go, off I went (now hurrying since I was going to be late). I did make it to the park to meet Kelly almost on t
ime but walked over the rest of the tracks on the way there.

When I got there, Kelly was waiting with Dick (the ride captain). They, of course, wa
nted to see all my injuries so I got my first look at my shoulder - big mistake because once I realized that I had ripped all the skin off of it, it began to hurt more. Dick, being the helpful kind of guy he is offered a tube of antibiotic ointment to Kelly to put on it. I really think she was remembering all the times she thought I might be killing her as she rubbed it into my skinless shoulder - it hurt like a Mother F*&K@#! One day maybe I'll get to repay the favor:)

Anyway, once she had tortured me, we got on our bikes & off we went. I actually tried not to whine too much & successfully made it through the last 30 miles but I was really glad when
I got home. I changed as quickly as I could (no shower that night - I was way too scared of the stinging water) & pretty much collapsed on the chair. Slept like crap because I couldn't really use the left side of my body but made it through.

So now, a week later, I'm pretty much recovered (at least pain wise). I had to skip a couple days of swimming (because I couldn't rotate my arm in a circle & the pool is saltwater) &
running (because every step made my hip hurt) but now I'm back to my regular training plan. I am, of course, using a new helmet but otherwise my bike seems to be fine. My shoulder is slowly healing (one day I may have skin again) & I have a super cool bruise on my hip that gets great comments from people a the gym. Lots of sympathy & stuff! I'm a little skittish on my bike every time I see a track or anything that looks remotely slippery but I'm sure that will pass too. And now, I'm a true believer in bike helmets. I shudder to think what might have happened to my head if that helmet hadn't been there to take the impact. I can send it back for a crash replacement but may keep it just to remind myself (and my children) how useful they really are. Now, if only I can make it through the rest of training in 1 piece!

Saturday, January 5, 2008


Just a quick note about my great run today - woke up feeling much more positive about things & got in an easy 6 miles in the rain...I love to run in the rain. Had some great tunes going on the Ipod, left the Polar Speed Sensor at home & just ran for fun...It was great.

Have a swim & bike on tap for tomorrow. It's supposed to be 60 degrees so I'm hoping it will be great too...

As a follow up to my last post, check out Kelly's take on the Hangover Classic:) Very interesting...

Friday, January 4, 2008

What Was I Thinking???

So I looked at the calendar and realized that there are less than 8 mos until the Ironman - what the f*&% was I thinking? When I actually contemplate what's to come I get this sick feeling in the pit of my stomach - the upside - I've told so many people about the race there's no way I'm backing out - I'm just having some brief panic attacks wondering about my sanity...

I have made some progress (kind of) since my last post...Last Sunday I actually rode 61 miles....yes 61 whole miles...thanks to Brian from Cycler's Cafe' for sticking it out with me. It was a cold and hilly course but I made it without too much problem...I did have to walk up a couple of hills - one because I didn't switch gears right & one because I just couldn't make it up:( Maybe next time. The only downside - I got a terrible blister in a place where people just shouldn't get blisters! I ordered new tights & am contemplating a new saddle. That is once experience I don't want to repeat.

I swam a whole 200 yards today nonstop - yes I know the IM is closer to 4000 but for me this is real progress...I actually swam a total of 1250 yards but took 15-30 second breaks at the end of every 50 yards. For 1 set of 200 yards & a couple sets of 100 yards, I made myself swim without breaks. My goal is to add 100 yards to this non-stop swim each week. This way I should be able to actually complete the distance freestyle...I can swim all day doing breast stroke but seem to have a mental block on freestyle.

I also ran 10 miles this week. This was my longest run since the marathon back in October & was done on a whim. On New Year's Eve I called Kelly to see if I could talk her in to running the Hangover Classic 10 mile race. After some prodding, she relented and agreed to meet me the next morning - and what a cold morning it was! Kelly even sent me a text telling me how cold it was & that she kind of hated me! The temp was in the low 30 & we had 20 mph winds. We were both pretty miserable but finished the race around 1:38. Not too shabby since we agreed to treat it as a training run.

So - I've completed my first week of real training in the new year & now have just shy of 8 mos to go. Hopefully I can keep of the progress without too many more panic attacks. I just have to take a deep breath & remind myself that 2 1/2 years ago I didn't think I'd ever be able to run 26 miles either....