Ok, I am out of my funk and I am attributing it all to a massive drop in serotonin. Nothing that chocolate could not solve. I have lots to post about and lets see if I can get it all done.
Swimming: I have been doing well with keeping up with my workouts. I have enjoyed swimming at my kid’s aquatic center pool. Everything is in long course swimming now and I really like it. It seems that I have to do less counting and that is a good thing. I have been doing some sets with fins and it has been pooping my legs out in a good way, but I feel like I am getting better at using my legs when I am swimming. Buddy has been doing AWESOME with his swimming. Last year he missed qualifying for one of the invitational meets by 2 one hundredths of a second on one of his events. There was only butterfly that he would have been eligible for. This year he has qualified at the higher of the the two qualifying times for freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke, and the 100 IM event. He swims butterfly this weekend to qualify. I am very proud of him and even though he complains about having to swim two-a days right now for Dolphin Swimming and Fleet Swimming, he is smoking fast. Now if I can get him to agree to swim a few of the meets for Fleet which are Jr. Olympic meets. It is a big hurdle, but I am confident that he would do well.
He is in no danger of getting kicked off of Dolphins. Ends up, he was in the wrong place at the wrong time and some kids from the other team fingered him as the candy thief when it was another kid. It is all good. Anyway, the team would really miss him scoring in the top three spots at his events and getting team points.
Milestone: Last Monday was awards night and recognition for the 5th grade class. Bud is not the stelar student, but neither was his mom at that age. He did however get a nice certificate for being on the yearbook staff and for completing the D.A.R.E. program which is a drug and alcohol resistance education program. Someone forgot to turn down the air conditioning in the cafetorium. It was standing room only and way to warm for comfort. The students behaved better than the parents and guests did. Several times the teachers and principals had to ask the audience to please hold their applause and cheering until the end so that each student's name could be heard. The worst offenders??? A Hispanic family who's daughter was one of the straight A students and perfect attendance award winners. This little girl was called up on four different occasions and her family was out of control. Strange how the student with the best grades has a family that cannot follow directions. The extended family was there and all 15 or 20 of them were very obnoxious. Hey, just promoting the stereotype Ese!
Cultural Growth: Last week was the last week of school for Buddy and I took the opportunity of my day off on Thursday to take him to the Houston Museum of Natural Science to go and see the Terra Cotta Warriors of China exhibit. I had seen a great show on the National Geographic channel about the archeological find that was made back in 1974 and the various pits or rooms of the necropolis of the first Emperor of China. It is amazing to see these Terra Cotta Warriors up close. The amount of detail on the statues is really incredible. Shoe laces, strands of hair, and fingernails are intricately detailed on each statue. Some of the statues still have the paint on them. Originally, once the statues were uncovered, the paint dried out and flaked off the warriors. The archeologists have developed a solvent that they apply all over the warriors as they are unearthing them. This solvent saturates the original paint and keeps the moisture in it so that it will not flake off the statue. I was not supposed to take any pictures, but I managed to accidentally hit the button on my camera as I was moving it from one pocket to another.
After seeing the exhibit, we took in the new Ben Stiller movie, Night at the Museum: Battle at the Smithsonian at the HMNS IMAX screen. It is great that the museum was showing a movie about a museum. The movie is great for kids and gives them a little bit of learning as well. After the movie, we went across the street into Herman Park and took a ride on the new Herman Park train. The train has been a popular fixture at Herman Park for many years and about a year and a half ago, the Houston Parks Department started building new tracks and a new depot to go along with a new train. Everything is finished and it is beautiful.
Training: Last Friday as soon as work was over, I packed up the bike and some gear and headed to Austin. The boys were off to go see Indy car racing at the Texas Motor Speedway and I was off to meet Greyhound so we could get some good hot hill training for Buffalo Springs. We were guests of Carrie (Tri to be Funny) and her hubby Shawn. It was so nice to roll out of their drive way and to instantly be on roads that had bike lanes and wide shoulders. We headed across Town Lake and onto Mopac so that we could hop onto Loop 360. It was hills from the get go and the wind was only getting gustier. Since there are no hills in Houston, this was a quad buster of a ride, but it was just what I needed. After crossing over the river again up north, we pedaled a few more miles before turning around and heading back. On the way back Greyhound headed back to the casa to get his run in and I went with Carrie and Shawn out on Bee Caves Rd. for more hills and wind. We were flying! Carrie was riding her new Kestrel Airfoil that she got for being a part of the Erin Baker Breakfast Cookie Team. She was leaving me in the dust and I got behind at some of the stop lights. I think that she has decided to ride the Kestrel for Ironman CdA next weekend. I could tell on the way back to Loop 360 that I was behind in my fluid intake. The inside of my upper lip kept on drying out and getting stuck to my teeth. It hurt to pull it off if I did not use some water. I was using a new aerobottle (post on that later) and it is almost impossible to fill on the fly and I was down to only a bottle of hot Accelerade that smelled yucky. Carrie and Shawn dropped me off at the drive way and took off to get 3-5 more miles in and I switched into run mode.
By this time it was 11:30 and it was HOT. Greyhound was showered and gathering his gear up. I set off for a 45 minute run to see how long I would last before blowing up. I felt good and it was nice to run. Austin provides hills on the run as well and I made my way down to the trails along Town Lake. I was enjoying the patches of shade from some of the trees and trying to keep the hydration up. I got to my turn around time and started heading back. I saw some other hot (sweaty) triathletes out on their run as well. Man, it would be fun to live in Austin for a few weeks and train. On the way back, I was keeping pace with a gal in front of me, but I could feel that my heart rate was starting to elevate. My Polar has a dead battery and I need to send it off FAST to get it repaired before Buffalo Springs. I had to stop and hydrate under the Mopac Bridge and I found myself alternating between walking and running to get back the last 15 minutes. It was after noon and it was so freaking hot and humid by now. I made it back and loaded up my bike, dropped some ice in the bottle of Accelerade and started working on it and hit the showers. Greyhound had to head on back and I followed him back to town as soon as I got cleaned up.
It was a great learning day for Buffalo Springs. Here is what I learned: 1. I CANNOT get behind on my hydration on the bike. 2. I will find something other than Accelerade to drink on the bike. I used Accelerade with good success at Arizona and in the 2007 race year. I was sad when the pre-mixed bottles were pulled off the shelves and it went back to the powder mix. The mix smells putrid. 3. My tummy handled a nut and seed based bar well. This is how I am going to have to get my protein in. 4. It is time to toss the Enduralytes to the back of the training bag and go back to S-caps. They have more sodium and I am a salty sweat monger. 5. Buffalo Springs is not my “A” race and I should not race it. I have to use it as a measurement of my fitness and how well I am hydrating and fueling during a workout.
On the way back home, I had to stop at the new outlet mall and I bought a few items of “Real People” clothing. I don’t do this too often, and it was about time to update a few things in my closet and drawers. I managed to pull out more items than I bought and put in. I stopped by Chipotle and picked up some yummy soft tacos and dropped into Blockbuster for a few movies. Home alone! What a treat.
I slept in and took the day off like my training schedule said to do on Sunday and picked up around the house after Church. It was very relaxing to do absolutely nothing.
The early part of the week is speed work for me so I have put in my track workout in the mid day heat, done my intervals on the trainer ( I need to start moving it out on the driveway), and got my 100 M swim repeats in along with some cross training. Tomorrow is a two hour bike ride. Buddy is participating in a Day Camp up at the pool so it leaves me plenty of time to get my workouts in. He also likes the fact that he does not have to go to work with me on most days.
18 days to Buffalo Springs! I am hoping that sitting out here in the heat at the swim pool while Buddy swims helps a little bit with my heat acclimation.