Training Log – Week of Oct. 6 (Week 39)

So sorry, so late. So busy spending the weekend cheering on friends who ran the Steamtown Marathon.


So much love for Girls’ Club. Thanks for the photo, Ali!

General training notes: This week’s training was a mixed bag—two good runs, one OK run, and one not-so-great run, plus two killer CompuTrainer classes. And Coach Pat says speedwork is coming soon too! #fireonthetrack

Monday – a.m. run

Easy four miles (plus 5.5 non-training ones with Back on My Feet) and corework

Tuesday – a.m. run and strength train

Easy seven miles, plus upper-body strength training and corework

Wednesday – a.m. CompuTrainer class at Tailwind Endurance

Lots of pain during this power hour class. But lots of threshold and VO2 max efforts and lots of watts, so no complaints.

Thursday – a.m. run

My long run of 10 miles (hey, it’s all relative) started out great: I didn’t go out too fast, paced myself, and felt good. Until I hit the wall at mile 9.5. My energy levels tanked, and even though my legs felt fine, I struggled to turn them over. If I had to run longer, then I would’ve slammed a gel, so I just slugged through the last half mile. On the bright side, I learned mile 9-9.5 is when I need to take nutrition.

Friday – a.m. CompuTrainer class at Tailwind Endurance

In hindsight, a hilly CompuTrainer workout probably wasn’t the best idea after a long run. My legs felt trashed for the first 45 minutes, but I was able to hold a low-threshold wattage for the 90-minute class. It didn’t feel great, but threshold isn’t supposed to be easy.

Saturday – a.m. run

Bad run. Just bad. Two friends and I ran in hilly Pennsylvania, and between the terrain and cold weather (and not wearing enough layers), I felt awful. Running steady wasn’t going to happen (sorry, Coach Pat), but I did what I could: five easy miles is better than zero miles.

Sunday – off

Spent the morning spectating Steamtown—and the afternoon relaxing!

What did you do this weekend?

Training Log – Week of Sept. 29 (Week 38)

So on the non-running/training front, this proved to be a bizarre week. Thankfully, I got an adequate dose of people time on Friday and Saturday—and despite rain, our Four Jacks Run was a success!


That morning, I ran in the rain for forty minutes. I can’t imagine (a) running 20 miles and (b) running 20 miles in the rain. These folks are rockstars! (One of four pace groups I should add; we had so many rockstar runners!)

Even though I had a productive week working from home, I’ve decided to camp out at coffee shops (or diners?) this week. I underestimated how much I enjoy being around people, and I really can’t go too long without talking to someone. It’s important to make this arrangement work too because it sounds like I’ll be working remotely for the next week at least.

General training notes: Overall, nothing too groundbreaking to report. I felt good during my runs and strong during my rides. I’ve also stepped up my corework routine, and I’m really trying to make strength training happen consistently. On an interesting note, I’ve definitely been sleepier this week. (Case in point: daily post-lunch powernaps.) Runners, is this normal when you increase mileage?

Monday – a.m. run

Early and easy five miles with Back on My Feet, plus four on my own after and corework. (BoMF miles will not be counted toward my overall weekly mileage because these runs are extremely easy. To account for this extra time on my feet, however, Coach Pat makes my workout after the shortest of the week.)

Tuesday – a.m. run and strength train

Six easy with strides, plus upper-body strength training and corework

Wednesday – a.m. CompuTrainer class at Tailwind Endurance

The line of this power hour was “Carrie’s over there pushing 4,000 watts.” My numbers were through the roof, and I’m still trying to wrap my head around why. Even the coach asked what I’ve been doing. It’s not like I’ve been biking more—just running all the miles. As per usual, we did lots of threshold and VO2 max intervals, and I was able to hit and hold 300-plus watts for the VO2 sets (#letstalkwatts). Until I do another power test, the plan is to go by effort.

Thursday – a.m. run

Blahhh, messed up this long run big time. I ran my usual route to Central Park and hit the Reservoir, but my Garmin died at 5.65 miles. I totally froze, panicked, and stopped running. In hindsight, I should’ve kept going or even turned around and retraced my steps home so I’d have a ballpark mileage. But a device has never died during a true, structured training run, and I didn’t know what to do. After consulting with Coach Pat, I finished the second half that afternoon for a total of 10 miles. GAWD, I’m such a rookie sometimes.

Friday – a.m. bike

Easy, 50-minute recovery spin on the indoor trainer

Saturday – a.m. run

Finally nailed it! Because of our Four Jacks Run, I woke up early to get after it before heading to the store. And thanks to the wind and rain, I had the entire West Side Highway to myself. Things simply clicked; muscle memory kicked in, my legs turned over, and my brain stayed “off.” I ran a little faster than I should have, but I honestly expected to slow down eventually—but I didn’t. Dare I say progress?

Sunday – a.m. Bike MS NYC


Great cause, great company, great post-ride food. My friends/coworkers and I did the 30-mile route, which circles Manhattan. We thought about doing the 55-mile ride, but that course essentially follows our normal ride over the bridge—and plus, two of them did 70.3 Princeton last week. So we hung out, spun out, and had a leisurely ride.

How did your workouts go this week?

Out of Whack

Helloooo, Friday!

mean-girls-october-3Had to do it #sorryimnotsorry

Even though I’m inclined to say “it’s been one of those weeks,” it really hasn’t. But it kinda has. Let me explain.

Earlier this week, we undertook a renovation project of sorts at work. This meant about 2,000 pairs of running sneakers had to be moved from the shoe room on the ground floor to the basement downstairs. And this relocation displaced our buyers, marketing folks, editorial gurus, etc. Somehow, my workspace became the new garbage location (I don’t ask questions), so I’ve been working remotely.

It’s been a productive, but surreal week. Nearly all of our “downstairs” people have been working from home, so when I stopped in Wednesday afternoon to take care of a few things, it felt like summer camp—a.k.a. hanging out with your friends without adults. (This doesn’t mean people are not responsible adults; the atmosphere was just different because our corporate contingent wasn’t there.)


Action shot from our Marathon FAQ Panel.  See the sneakers on the left?  Direct result of the renovation project.

Working from home has its positives and negatives: Woohoo for wearing glasses, camping out on the couch, and blasting Maroon 5 all day (and OneRepublic and Sara Bareilles too.) Boo for going stir crazy, experiencing Girls’ Club withdrawal, and having no one to talk to. Gotta take the good with the bad, right?

On a related note, I’ve felt totally out of whack this week.

My routine changed because working remotely means I can start doing my thing earlier. This week has actually reminded me of Honors Week during my senior year of college. Basically, students undertaking Honors projects had five days to write at least 50 pages of a dissertation of sorts; and since I’m a morning person, I’d wake up early, crank out words for five hours, and then take a break. There’s no drafting and revising now, but there have been similarities like days blurring together and taking 30-minute power naps.


Also, thank GAWD season six of Parks and Rec is on Netflix Instant

During Honors Week, I shut myself off from everyone, put my blinders on, and basically only did one of three things: wrote, ate, or slept. Thankfully, I lived with my BFF who was also doing Honors, so we felt some solidarity in our zombie statuses: ‘Are you alive? What page are you on? Nice, ready, break!’

That rigid intensity hasn’t been replicated this week, but that sense of distance feels familiar. Since I spent my Honors Week waking hours dialed in, there was virtually no socializing. Granted, it was only five days, but still. Not ideal. This week has felt like that too: It’s tough when you know exactly what’s going on in someone’s life—including the nitty gritty stuff—and then you don’t see or really talk to them for a week. Again, not ideal, but normally, this wouldn’t be an issue; as a type-A person, I’d cling to and find comfort in my routine, but since my day-to-day has changed too, well, it’s been a long week.


Miss you, Zelda!

There’s no concrete end date in sight—just the vague, “sometime next week”—and since we’re in full-fledged marathon season, we can’t let up either. It’s the most wonderful (and crazy and stressful) time of the year!

Speaking of, two quick PSAs: First, for you NYC folks, JackRabbit is holding our Four Jacks Run tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. If you need one last long run (20 miles) before the marathon, then this is perfect!  Second, I’m doing Bike MS Sunday with some coworkers. This has become a personal cause—you may remember I did MuckFest Boston last year with my aunt—and every donation helps.

All right. It’s back to Sara B. until further notice.

What are you up to this weekend?

(Almost) All of The Updates

Sometimes the words come easily, flowing from my fingertips to the keyboard with little thought. This is my favorite part about writing; when the thoughts, sentences, and ideas come together effortlessly.


Obligatory sunset picture because I actually do things after work now. #realgirl

Sometimes the words need coaxing, wanting to come forward and make themselves known, but feeling inhibited. The intention exists, but the execution idles; it needs a spark, a prompt, or a reason to make the words come out.

Can you guess which scenario has been the case for the past month? Yikes, has it really been that long?

Since the end of triathlon season, I’ve embraced “real life,” and it’s completely taken over. There’s so much to share, but I’ve had a hard time articulating everything—and keeping track of it all too. So I’m going with a good ole fashioned list. Type-A personality for the win!

Biking and running have been going very, very well. I hope I don’t jinx myself with that statement. Up until a week ago, the only Full Throttle workouts I attended were the Central Park rides, but thanks to accidents, tickets, and general animosity among runners, pedestrians, and cyclists, I’ve decided to avoid the park until further notice. There’s no reason to put myself in those risky situations, especially since I don’t have any upcoming tris.

No Central Park hammer sessions means plenty of quality time with my people at Tailwind Endurance—and I’m totally psyched. My bike improved tremendously in 2014, and I’m excited to build on the progress.


Finally got my roadie re-fit so legit cyclists don’t make fun of me anymore: raised and moved back the seat; dropped handlebars; cut head tub; installed longer steam. Thanks, Bikeriders NYC!

From now until November, I’ll do one-two CompuTrainer rides per week for “fun.” What? You mean doing VO2 intervals, generating all the watts, and telling your legs to shut up isn’t fun?

Come December, I’ll do another functional threshold power (FTP) test and structure workouts around those values. The Tailwind coaches think raising my FTP by 30-50 watts is doable, but it will take work, obviously. On the bright side, everyone seems to be in agreement that I’m just scratching the surface of my cycling potential.

My run finally seems to be clicking too. Coach Pat has done a great job of structuring my run training and striking a balance between the biking and running. (Still not swimming. Still not caring. #sorryimnotsorry) Honestly, I can’t believe how well my body has responded to the increased frequency and mileage (I’m up to 25 miles per week, which is a lot for me), and I’m also learning a lot about the sport in the process. Dynamic stretches, strides, driving from the elbows, oh my!

I guess this would be a good time to share my next “race.” After talking with Coach Pat, we decided I could run the Philadelphia Half-Marathon as a long—potentially tempo—training run. As a short-course triathlete, I don’t need to be training for and racing 13.1 miles, but I do need to be able to run long as an aerobic workout. And I’m also a runner now.

So why Philly? First, I haven’t been there in forever—we’re talking elementary school Girl Scout days. I remember thinking it was a cool city and would be a great place to live; in fact, it made an impression on me long before NYC. Second, some coworkers plan to do the half and full (if they ever pull the trigger and sign up—c’mon, guys!), so it would be fun to road trip and race together. Three, the timing is perfect. Right now, my long run is 10 miles, so barring a catastrophe, I should be able to run 13 miles by Nov. 23.

I’ve started volunteering with Back on My Feet (BoMF). At JackRabbit, I manage our relationships with clubs, teams, and charities, and when I first met the BoMF representatives last spring, they made a huge impression on me. I immediately wanted to be their BFF, and they spoke about BoMF so passionately; their energy was contagious, and I decided once my triathlon season ended, I wanted to get involved.


#BoMFlove #allthehugs

A little bit about BoMF: It’s a national nonprofit organization that uses running to help those experiencing homelessness change the way they see themselves; ideally, this helps them make real change in their lives that results in employment and independent living.

The NYC chapter has four teams that run Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings, and I’ve committed to one run per week so far. Even though I’m still getting my feet wet, I absolutely love it. The folks I run with—fellow volunteers and residential members (those experiencing homelessness)—are awesome, and it’s inspiring to see and hear how you can make a positive, tangible impact on an individual level. I’m so grateful to be part of BoMF.

This is pretty long, so I’ll wrap it up here.  Maybe there will be another post sometime soon?

What’s new in your life?

Training Log – Week of Sept. 22 (Week 37)

Hello! Just popping in with an all-too-familiar workout recap. Believe it or not, I drafted a post (shocking, I know) so there may be some real world updates to share later this week.


But let’s stick to talking about miles and watts for now, OK?

General training notes: Overall, this ended up being a solid, solid training week. Coach Pat’s running program continues to work, and I made my triumphant (read: painful) return to Tailwind Endurance. It’s time to lay the groundwork for 2015!

Monday – a.m. run

What is going on with the weather? Twenty-four hours ago, I ran through a wall of humidity. This morning, though, it was chilly. No complains, though. Four easy miles, done and done.

Tuesday – a.m. run and strength train

Six awesome and easy miles on the West Side Highway, plus some upper-body strength training and corework.

Wednesday – a.m. CompuTrainer class at Tailwind Endurance

It was good (and painful) to see my people at Tailwind after a multi-month hiatus. Even though it’s been fun riding in Central Park with my team, these morning outings aren’t safe anymore. There have been a few bad accidents, there have been way too many tickets issued to cyclists, and since I don’t have an upcoming race, I can’t justify the risks. So it’s back to the pain cave! Lots of threshold and VO2 max intervals and lots of pain.

Thursday – a.m. run

Fall running is the best—and it’s even better in the rain. Crazy you may say, but here’s the thing: precipitation means fewer runners, so I basically had the West Side Highway and Central Park to myself for 9.5 miles. Rain, neon tanks, and Maroon 5 tunes for the win!

Friday – a.m. CompuTrainer class at Tailwind Endurance

Note to self: do not attempt a threshold CompuTrainer workout the day after a long run. The first five or six intervals felt OK, but my legs eventually gave out and couldn’t generate the watts.

Saturday – off

Sunday – a.m. run

Summer doesn’t want to leave so soon. This steady, 40-minute run packed the humidity. Why do my tougher workouts always seem to take place on the warmer days?

The hunt for October is on—time to keep bringing it!

What’s your favorite part about autumn workouts?

Training Log – Week of Sept. 15 (Week 36)

Hi, hi—I’m Carrie, the girl who used to blog here on a regular basis.


Now I work all the time and run all the (pain- and injury-free) miles and go to the suburbs to watch little kiddos do triathlons.

General training notes: Fall has arrived—and thank GAWD. Even though we had a mild summer, I’m more than ready for cooler temperatures (read: no humidity). I’m definitely a cold-weather athlete, so I’m excited to continue my training with Coach Pat and build some mileage momentum going into … October. Wowza!

Monday – a.m. run and strength train

My signature Nike tanks won’t cut it anymore—I was cold! It took a while for me to warm up, but the four easy miles went by quickly, and I did some upper-body strength training and corework.

Tuesday – a.m. run

Five easy miles in the rain—and no complaints. Sure, wearing a visor would’ve been preferable, but I had the entire West Side Highway to myself.

Wednesday – a.m. bike

Even though I’ve reduced my biking mileage and frequency, I don’t think I’ve ever felt this good in the saddle. My teammates and I logged about 28 miles and shut down the workout before 7 a.m. There have been more accidents in Central Park recently (both cyclist-on-cyclist and cyclist-and-pedestrian crashes) so I wanted to get out of there ASAP.

Thursday – a.m. run

I didn’t have a great long run last week, so I wasn’t sure what to expect this time around—but I felt good. Really good. I forced myself to start out conservatively, and when I hit mile seven, my second wind kicked it; I really wanted to crank it, but it wouldn’t have been a smart move. I stopped at nine miles exactly, chugged a large iced coffee, and got myself to work on time. (Oh, and I foam rolled too.)

Friday – a.m. bike

So … I got promoted to the top group for the ride. Granted, there were only 10 people there, but my coach had me ride with him and another super-speedy teammate. After our warm-up loop, the premise was simple: “Carrie, don’t get dropped.” Aye, aye! Between losing a contact lens and constantly telling my legs to shut up, I had an eventful ride, but managed to hang on. Sweet!

Saturday – off

Road tripped to the ‘burbs to work the Westchester Triathlon Expo

Sunday – a.m. run

Woof. It was only a matter of time before a stinky run worked its way into the mix, but wow, this one was pretty horrible. My legs weren’t totally fresh from being on my feet all day Saturday, and I waited too long to run—and it was humid. The plan called for 40 minutes steady, which I did not execute well. In typical fashion, I started out too fast, hung on for three miles, and then slowed significantly for the second half of the run. Train and learn, right?

What are you looking forward to about the fall?

Training Log – Week of Sept. 8 (Week 35)

Hi, there—yes, I’m alive. And yes, I’m the worst. Work has picked up—woohoo for full-blown marathon season—and the writing juices haven’t been flowing. You win some, you lose some, right?


The calm before the runner/biker/triathlete storm in Central Park

Even though my typical stream-of-consciousness word vomit has been suppressed, my running and biking have been going well. (Let’s not talk about swimming, OK?)

General training notes: Week three of training with Coach Pat saw a semi-important running milestone—strides! These short pickups at the end of runs reintroduce speed and basically remind me what it’s like to run fast. (Remember, the prescribed pace has been easy up until this point.) I’m also knocking on all the wood everywhere because my body has still been responding well—no disconcerting aches and/or pains, and I genuinely look forward to each and every run. That’s what it’s all about! (Also, super congrats to Coach Pat on finishing second overall at the North Face Endurance Challenge: Wisconsin 50-K! #proudathlete)

Monday – a.m. run and strength train

Nothing too exciting to report: an easy 3.5 miles and some strength training. (And a skipped swim workout. #sorryimnotsorry)

Tuesday – a.m. run

I saw Lauren Fleshman! She’s a pro runner for Oiselle, and she was in town for fashion week. She passed me on the West Side Highway (surprise, surprise), and she was heading south as I continued to head north, and I thought, ‘Hey, that looks like Lauren Fleshman.’ Obviously, I tweeted about it. And she responded. And Kara Goucher favored it. #fangirl

Oh, and the five miles went OK too.

Wednesday – a.m. bike

Honestly, I’m shocked how good I feel on the bike for being in the saddle only twice a week. We met in the park well before the crack of dawn and logged a warm-up loop before my coach split us into groups. My attempt to sneak into the boys group failed, but as soon as my girl group started our first hard effort, I flew up Cat Hill and dropped everyone. One of my coaches caught me, and we worked together for two loops. He pushed me big time—it was a tough ride. I was ready to shut it down after 28 miles.

Thursday – a.m. run

My long runs the past two weeks spanned eight miles, and Coach Pat increased it to nine this week. In typical me fashion, I started out too fast (in my defense, the West Side Highway is flat and fast) and paid for it big time once I reached hilly Central Park. Thankfully, I saw one of my Girls’ Club colleagues, which gave me a second wind. Anyway, I felt OK overall, and the miles got done.

Friday – a.m. bike

Guess who got to ride with the boys? This girl! At 40 miles, it ended up being a longer weekday ride, and the guys pushed me too.

Saturday – a.m. run

Steady 40 minutes in Central Park—and it was a great run! Cool, crisp, and good energy thanks to the 5th Ave. Mile. The hills still kicked my butt, but I’m getting better.

Sunday – off

So what’s going on with you? Ready for fall weather—and running?

Training Log – Week of Sept. 1 (Week 34)

Thank GAWD for four-day weeks.


Andy Dwyer anyone?

That is all.

General training notes: Woohoo for week two of base building with Coach Pat! The combo of doing shorter runs more frequently seems to be working because my body has handled the increased mileage pretty well. I’m also being responsible about stretching and foam rolling because I did not take proactive recovery steps during the season.

Monday – off

Travel day back to NYC

Tuesday – a.m. run and strength train

Aside from the oppressive humidity, these four easy miles went pretty well. (Seriously, isn’t fall supposed to be here?) I also attempted pushups and corework.

Wednesday – a.m. bike

Here’s a cycling first: One of my contacts fell out mid-ride. Maybe because I was going so fast? Ha! The group logged four loops, but I shut it down after three; figured I should play it safe since I had only one functioning eye.

Thursday – a.m. run

Full disclosure: I went to a work party, didn’t get home until 2 a.m., and attempted my long run on 4.5 hours of sleep. And it went OK. Sure, I felt like I was going to die the first few miles, but once my body woke and loosened up, I settled into a groove. Take that, eight miles!

Friday – a.m. bike

Like I said last week, the increased running seems to be helping the biking. Sure, I don’t feel as explosive on hills, but I’ve been able to hang with strong cyclists. During this 35-mile ride, I sort of dropped everyone except one guy. So there’s that.

Saturday – p.m. run

Whew, this was a busy day on the workout front. First, I led a JRab/Shake Shack group bike ride. When I started triathlon—and essentially needed to learn how to ride a bike—I went to a bunch of Syracuse Bicycle Women on Wheels rides, so the least I can do now is give back to the sport and pay it forward. I’m happy to report no one crashed, got lost, or sustained a flat. We covered about 20 leisurely miles.

Thinking ahead, I brought my running gear with me and hit Central Park for 40 minutes—after having a coffee shake. The heat and humidity were killer, but it was a good run. I couldn’t tell you the last time I’ve run in the park, and it reminded me how much I miss it.

Finally, I spent a few hours rock climbing later that afternoon. I still have so much to learn, but I’m working on my belay certification so I can scale all the things. And it’s also been incredibly humbling. As far as triathlon goes, I’ve gotten to the point when I know what to do and can put it on autopilot; it’s becoming second-nature. With rock climbing, though, there is so much going through my head, and I obviously do not know what I’m doing in terms of technique yet. It’s fun, it’s challenging, and it’s keeping me on my toes!

Sunday – a.m. run and strength train

Easy 3.5 miles. Upper-body strength training and corework. Brunch. #nailedit

What’s one activity you’ve always wanted to try—but haven’t yet? (Go do it!)

Triathlon Training Log – Week of Aug. 25 (Week 33)

Hello, hello!


I’m back in Upstate New York for a few days. Gotta appreciate the Cuse Nation section in Wegmans!

General training notes: Woohoo for the official start of run training! As I mentioned, Coach Pat has put together my plan, and I’m currently entering phrase one, aka base building. The primary goal centers on (slowly and safely) increasing my mileage. (During the season, I was not running enough.  Period.) It’s been tough to run easy, but I’m keeping the larger goal in mind.

Monday – a.m. swim and run

Still not feeling swimming at all. The only reason I made it to the pool was because I planned to meet a teammate. Nice perk of training with other people, right? I essentially pulled 1,500 yards and then ran an easy 3.5 miles outside.

Tuesday – a.m. run and strength train

Easy four miles outside and some upper-body strength training and corework.

Wednesday – a.m. bike

Our team rides are becoming smaller and smaller, but I still got in a solid 40 mile with some teammates. I’m not sure if it’s because I’ve been running more or biking less, but my legs felt incredibly fresh, and climbing hills seemed easier too. However, I felt much less explosive. Trade-off of running all the miles, probably.

That night, some coworkers and I went to Brooklyn Boulders to scale things.


Bikes, bikes, bikes!

It was awesome, and I can’t wait to climb again!

Thursday – a.m. run

OMG, this was such a great run. Clear skies, no humidity, slightly overcast, upbeat playlist—those eight miles flew by in no time. I felt invincible. I love running!

Friday – a.m. run

I took the train home Thursday afternoon for Labor Day weekend, and since Coach Pat suggested seeking out surfaces other than pavement/concrete, I met up with MB for an easy 40 minutes on the trails at Green Lake State Park. Running on dirt and dodging rocks and roots provided a new challenge to say the least—I’m not quite ready for my XTERRA debut—but it was nice to change it up. MB and I always have a ton to talk about, so it was great to catch up and log some miles.

Saturday – a.m. run

Since all my weekday runs went well—I felt great and followed the distance/pace/time plan—I asked Coach Pat if I could run around the lake, which equates to nine-ish miles. And under two stipulations, he gave me the green light! As per his instructions, I took a gel and 15-minute break halfway through, and I kept the pace extremely easy; if I felt fatigued at any point, I would have to be a responsible athlete and shut it down. Like Thursday’s run, the 9.25 miles passed quickly. And even though the mid-run break was new protocol, it allowed me to break up the outing into two, 4.5-mile shorter runs. For what it’s worth, my second wind kicked at around mile six, and I had to be carefully not to speed up.

Sunday – a.m. run

Easy, 30-minute shakeout on trails. My calves felt a little tight, but that’s probably because I didn’t foam roll the day before. Because I foam roll now because I’m a runner!

In related news, I logged 34 miles this week. That’s a solid start to base building, right?

So what’s going on with you? What did you do for Labor Day? How’s the working out going?

2014 Off-Season Triathlon Goals

So. It’s been a few weeks since my last triathlon of the 2014 season, which has given me time to reflect on my training and performance and develop a game-plan for the off-season.

First, I owe a huge thanks to my family, friends, coaches, teammates, and basically everyone I’ve interacted with these past eight months. There’s no way I would’ve been successful without help. Syracuse Bicycle hooked me up with a sweet Slice, and the guys at Zen Bikes took care of me when it came to maintenance and random questions and concerns. The Tailwind Endurance coaches were instrumental to my improvement on the bike, and obviously my Full Throttle Endurance coaches and teammates motivated and pushed me too. My coworkers and friends were incredibly supportive, and my family was my rock. So thank you, thank you!


From left to right: Getting dialed in at Syracuse Bicycle; pushing all the watts at Tailwind Endurance; hamming it up for the camera with my coaches; trying not to cry after my Girls’ Club colleagues/friends made me a card and t-shirt before Nationals; running a 4th of July 5-K with my dad.

Anyway, let’s talk about what’s going to happen from now until official training starts up in January 2015.

Swimming will become my recovery workout of choice. I’ll still get in the water once or twice each week, but I’m not trying to make gains. My swim improved this season (#wannabeswimmer), so as long as I start 2015 at a better spot than 2014, then I’m OK with backing off the volume. And honestly, those training hours would be better spent on another discipline.

Biking will still be a top priority. It would be crazy to back off the bike now—I’m finally starting to find my cycling legs! Ideally, I’ll get in the saddle three times each week, and as the weather gets colder, I’ll become a regular at Tailwind again. I want more watts!

Strength training will happen on a regular basis. During the winter, I was diligent about strength training thanks to “optional” sessions after our indoor cycling workouts. As the season progressed, though, it became less of a priority; with only so many training hours, something had to give—and it couldn’t be swimming, biking, or running. Anyway, I plan to strength train and do corework at least twice each week. Both will help across the disciplines, especially the corework in terms of the bike.

Running will become a top priority. This requires some explanation.

Last off-season, I focused on the bike, which needed to happen, and I made some serious gains. Case in point: The bike was my weakest discipline at 2013 Nationals; this year, it was my strongest. And this was noticeable during all my races: I’d work the swim and rock the bike—and then try to hang on and not get run down.

During some races, this strategy worked: at SoBe and Stamford, I was able to hold off girls because of my swim-bike combo. However, when I looked at final run times, there was a lot of room for improvement. When I couldn’t run down the second-place female at Hopkins (who beat me by 30 seconds), this further proved my run needed some attention. And at Nationals, I put time into girls and came off the bike 23rd, which was where I needed to be. But then I got run down.

This was a frustrating fact to accept, and one of my first thoughts upon finishing the race was, “My run has to get better.” I needed this wake-up call. I absolutely love biking, and if I didn’t get run down at Nationals, then I would probably spent the off-season pushing all the watts.

But I got run down.

So this brings me to an important announcement: The man, the myth, the legend Coach Pat—who founded Educated Running—will be doing my run programming. He’s a legit runner (he WON the Bear Mountain Half-Marathon this year), he’s an experienced coach, and he isn’t too shabby as a triathlete either. Basically, this is what he does—and I have no idea what I’m doing. (Full disclosure: I’ve know and work with Pat in real life.)


Throwback to our days as models. Pat is on the right.

I’m not sure what is reasonable to expect in terms of progress during the next four months, but I do know it will be—well—four more months of specific, structured run training than I had last off-season. And I’m keeping the big picture in mind, too: This training block will set the tone for 2015—and beyond.

Bottom line, I’m super excited to start training with Coach Pat. Wait, I’m excited to run? Guess I’m making progress already.