Last weekend we were in DC with my family. It was an awesome trip to celebrate my parents' birthdays and anniversary! The 6 of us went to a baseball game, took a duck boat tour, rode segways, ate way too much, toured all the museums, the Capital, Printing and Engraving, etc. It was so much fun. We got there Friday night and Saturday morning had mapped out a 12 mile run from our hotel. Tom and I were amazed by the number of people running. When we run at home, we see no one. At one point on our 12 miles I said to Tom "do you think there's a race or something going on because I've never seen this many people just out for a run?". It was the best environment ever! Plus running by the monuments, the White House, Watergate, Arlington, Iwo Jima, the Mall, and the Reflecting Pool made it better pretty darn amazing. I just wish that my hamstring hadn't been bothering me. We also probably walked a million miles over the 4 days that we were there! It was kind of a nice change of pace.
We got home on Tuesday to a boat load of work. Tom hadn't gotten his bike back from Atlanta yet on Wednesday when we were supposed to do an 80 mile bike so we moved that to Thursday.
So Thursday comes and the bike started off well. We had a route planned out that would take us to a little town called Utica where there's an ice cream mill. Fitting place to stop and get a "refreshment"! Of course it's August in Delaware, Ohio though and that means chip-n-seal time. On the country roads, instead of paving them when they get bad, they put some tar down and then lay gravel on it. With the heat and whatnot, the cars push the gravel into the tar and a new surface is created. It's a great way to fix the roads, but it absolutely sucks on the bike! So of course we run into that and it throws our whole route off. Then I get stung by a bee. The little bugger was in my shoe and stung my ankle. Then when we were about 35 miles from home, my IT band starts to flare up. I haven't had any problems with it since the Ironman and counted my blessings each time I rode without pain. It reared it's big head in a major way on Thursday. By about mile 55, I didn't know if I could even go on. I stopped and stretched, bitching and moaning the whole way (thanks Brady for being a great hubby and not leaving me on the side of the road to fend for myself, even though that's probably what I deserved) and finally said that I could make it to my mother in laws which would give me 70 miles for the day.
Friday we swam 1.4 miles and I felt great. My darn wetsuit is tearing like crazy though and I keep fixing the holes with wetsuit glue. It's a mess. I'm hoping that it'll make it through the Ironman. It's only a year old. We don't leave it in the sun. We rinse it and hang it inside when we're done swimming. I never wear it in the pool. Anyone have a good recommendation for one that might last longer? Mine's a Vortex 2 and I loved it besides the fact that it's not holding up too well. I should swim without it, but then I'd be super slow...
Yesterday, we ran a half marathon. After my bike ride on Thursday and the 12 that nearly killed my hamstring the previous weekend, I wasn't expecting much. It was humid... upwards of 90% which if you've never had the pleasure of running in that, it's much like a sauna. I struggled to get comfortable all morning, but managed to run 8:43's and finish with my second best time ever for a half - 1:54:06. I was happy with that. Beats where I was last year at this time. I ended up feeling miserable the rest of the day though - maybe the heat, maybe some girl issues, who knows. I feel like it's always something!
This morning we woke up thinking we were going to get 70 more miles in on the bike. I don't know what we were thinking. We got to about mile 38 and I suggested coming home. It was HOT - right now the thermometer reads 97 and not a cloud in the sky. Good news... I didn't have any IT problems (that's probably because I stayed in my small ring all morning, but I may resort to that if I need to). Although I kind of feel like I should have done the whole ride, I think my body will thank me this coming week. We'll do the rest tomorrow which was supposed to be a rest day so that miles won't go unridden!
Sunday is my first half Ironman of the season. Tom's not doing it because he had such a horrible experience at the race last year. I'm a bit scared... I kind of still feel like my training might not be right on target for a 6+ hour race, but I'll give it a shot. No expectations which is probably best. I'm sure a lot of my performance will depend on the weather and how my hammy and IT hold up. Send good vibes my way!