Saturday, July 25, 2015

Summer in the Mountains

I've been in Boulder now for almost 6 weeks, and training has been going great so far. I switched coaches this year to be coached by Julie Dibens, and it's been great to be back in a group environment having regular contact with a coach and training with other athletes who are working hard day in and day out.

A couple of weeks ago, I did the 5km Carter Lake Crossing and came 4th in the women - one place out of winning money, but a great swim workout. Swimming 5k in a pool with regular breaks is really different than swimming open water in a race and always hoping that the other side of the lake is not tooooo far off!

The bike training in Boulder is also amazing. There are no shortage of open roads or long mountain climbs, and I love heading off on my bike knowing that I can do a 4 or 5 hour ride and not have any traffic lights. Riding up on the Peak to Peak Highway at 10,000 ft of elevation or climbing up to Estes Park at 7,500 ft are two rides that I'll never get tired of.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Boulder Bound

I've just arrived in Boulder for another summer of training, my third summer in a row here. The quiet roads leading out of town, the long mountain climbs and the endless running trails make it my absolute favorite place to train in the summer. It's become a sort of second home to me with lots of great friends and training partners, and a pretty fun place to be in the summer.

I had a great last three month training block in San Diego with my bff Rebecca Preston who came over from Australia to get ready for IM Texas. We did a lot of great bike training in those three months which made up for my low run mileage due to a hamstring strain. Thankfully, my hamstring has now come around again, and I'm back to building up my run base to catch up with my bike fitness.

First up on my agenda upon arriving in Boulder today was to get my bike fit checked by Mat Steinmetz on my new Cervelo P3. I also switched saddles this year to the ISM Attack which I love, and so a bit of fine tuning to my bike fit was due. Also in the photos below is my new training/race kit for 2015. Thanks Wattie Ink!

I'm excited for a great summer of training in Boulder and the start of my race season next month. More to come on that soon!

Monday, February 23, 2015


This past week, I tried out a new form of recovery called cryotherapy. Well, new for me, but it's actually been around for over 30 years, first developed in Japan to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis and then spreading to Europe to help Olympic athletes recover faster.

Anyone who knows me knows that I detest cold weather and would much rather bake in the sun than go anywhere that even remotely resembles winter. Yes, I know, I grew up in eastern Canada, but I grew up in very toasty indoor temps. Anyway, I had the opportunity this past week to try out a new cryotherapy clinic in town called Chiltonic. The treatment involves spending 3min in a cold chamber cooled by nitrogen vapor to an average of -150 degrees Celcius. The cooling effect on the body helps reduce inflammation, pain and soreness associated with training and injury, and helps promote recovery after a hard workout.

I actually, believe it or not, enjoyed the cryotherapy and did not offer all of my life's savings in exchange for an early exit. What really surprised me most was how good my legs felt the next day. I had purposely timed my session after a hard 4hr ride, and the next day I had none of my usual post ride leg fatigue and soreness. If anything, I felt like I had come off a day of recovery. Definitely a great way to chill and recover after a hard day of training!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

HAPPY 2015!

Since January is just about to come to an end, I'm squeezing in a first blog for 2015 before the calendar switches to February!

As 2014 was coming to a close, I decided in early December to head to Arizona to do a 6 week block of training and some strengthening/PT at Endurance Rehab in Scottsdale to get ready for the 2015 race season. After being in the sport for over 15 years, I've learned how important it is to get back in the gym in the off season, get treatment for any lingering injuries, and take the time to build up a good training base. For the last month and a half, I spent three afternoons a week at Endurance Rehab doing core and strength exercises, I had some awesome swim training with the Phoenix Swim Club, some great base building rides north of Scottsdale and some great runs along the Phoenix Canal. Outside of San Diego and Boulder, Phoenix is definitely one of my favorite places in the US to train. Not to mention that it's warm in winter!:)

I drove back to San Diego a couple of days ago, ready for some good winter training and to start gearing up for some early spring races. Happy 2015!


Monday, November 10, 2014

Florida Rev 3 Half Ironman

Yesterday I raced the Rev 3 Florida Half Ironman, my first long distance race for this year. My race season didn't exactly go as planned but I was happy to squeeze in the last North American Half Ironman of the year. Following my foot surgery at the end of March (for removal of a large neuroma and repair of a torn plantar plate ligament), I had a few months of rehab, and then in an over ambitious attempt to get back to racing, I strained my hamstring at the Boulder Peak 5150 in July. To make a long story short, I had another couple of months of rehabbing my hamstring, and finally got going again with my run training in late September. Phew, just in time before the 2014 race season came to an end!

The Rev 3 Florida Half Ironman was an age group race with a prize purse for the top 5 men and women overall. The swim was one of the roughest swim conditions that I've ever swum in. It was a point to point swim against a strong current, and the general consensus from talking to athletes after the race was that swim times were about 4-5min slower than normal. I came out of the water in 29 minutes, slow for me but about 3 minutes ahead of the next female. It had been raining through the night and early morning, but thankfully the rain stopped halfway through the bike, which made cornering on the "etch a sketch" bike course much easier than the first half of the ride. I entered T2 with a 5 and a half minute lead on the second place female, and then head out on the 2 loop 1/2 marathon run course. Although fading on the second half with limited run mileage in my legs leading up to the race, I extended my lead by the end to finish 7 minutes ahead of second place and 12 minutes ahead of third.

So now it's time for a little bit of an off season break before I start gearing up for next year. What started with a question mark racing season after my surgery in March finished on a good note, and I'm happy that I could squeeze in this late season race. Now it's time for a vacation day in Florida before heading back to San Diego tomorrow. Onwards and upwards!

Friday, August 15, 2014

How Do Skratch Labs and Osmo Stack Up Against EFS?

Recently, First Endurance was called to stack up its own EFS electrolyte hydration mix against the low calorie offerings from Skratch Labs and Osmo. What came from it was very interesting: by cutting the serving in half, you can get more electrolyes from EFS, with less sugar and more amino acids than either Skratch or Osmo.

Check out the data below. Pretty impressive!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Boulder Peak 5150

Last Sunday was my return to racing for the 2014 season with the Boulder Peak 5150 (5150 race series meaning the total miles in an Olympic distance triathlon). It was a bit of a last minute decision to enter the race as I had been rehabbing since late March from my foot surgery (neurmoma removal and plantar plate ligament repair). My training had been going well since I came to Boulder the end of May, and a local race seemed like a good chance to get back in the race of things.

After focusing on 70.3 and Ironman racing for the last 6 years, I went into this race thinking it would be a walk in the park, but I was quickly proven wrong! I realized about 200m into the swim that a 1500m all out swim is a whole other world of hurt compared to a 4km Ironman swim. And a 40km bike timetrial followed by a fast 10km run? I would have to say that most days I would pick the 180km bike and 42km run of an Ironman!

Anyway, back to the race. Despite having to wear running shoes for both transitions (running barefoot is still yet to be checked off the rehab list), I was happy to finish 10th in the pro women. With the 10km run being my longest in 10months, I'm sure it didn't look pretty, and I'll likely be recovering for another couple of days yet!;) As happy as I was to finish top 10, I was even happier to be back racing again, and to have a happy right foot for the first time in almost a year. So it's back to training now and back to planning the rest of my season. Onwards and upwards!:)