Friday, July 20, 2012
Read F4 coach/ athlete Kristi Yamasaki's Ironman CDA Report
My Race Report
Morning of: Surprisingly enough I was not that nervous when I woke up. I was ready for this race mentally and was hoping that physically my body would hold up. I ate my usual pre-race/pre-workout breakfast of cheerios and a protein drink.
Swim: The swim start was not as scary as I anticipated. I knew to expect a crazy start with 2500 of my closest friends with the potential for getting kicked, swam over, goggles pulled off, hit with hands, etc....but I was pretty fortunate that I only got an elbow which I can remember. The first loop was pretty straight forward but the second loop felt like I was in a washing machine. The wind started to pick up so the water started to get choppy. Every time my arm went up, sometimes I found water, other times I found air. And I can't tell you how much lake water I drank on Sunday morning. Once I got out of the water an hour and 35 minutes later, I was pretty relieved the swim was over - I made it through...now I can start the fun parts of the triathlon, biking and running which I have been looking forward to.
T1: It was slow and cold. All I wanted to do was get into the tent, change and get onto the bike since I knew I would warm up once riding but my fingers were so numb and teeth chattering, it was difficult to change into dry clothes. I was fortunate that I had planned for any type of weather since I had a dry top to change into. I had other women who didn't plan ahead and was asking around for a dry top.
Bike: Once out of t1, I was on the bike. I was ready to kill the 112 miles. As our coaches say, something will go wrong on race day, and it is how you respond to that event that can make or break your race. Straight out of the shoot, I couldn't clip in...I had left on my protective cleat covers on my bike shoes. You would have thought that I had learned from the Lake to Lake triathlon, but no I forgot to check the bottom of my bike shoes when I dropped off my gear in my swim to bike bag on Saturday.
If that was the worst it was going to get then no big deal. I threw them off to a volunteer - another pair gone (sorry billy, another pair bites the dust). I had my nutrition on the bike and I was getting warm, but the one thing I was not prepared for at all was that I got sea sick from the swim and I drank way too much lake water and air so that my stomach was upset/nauseous. I typically don't get sea sick and I had ear plugs, but today I did get sick. I unanticipatedly threw up directly onto my bike at mile 10. I thought this is definitely not going the way I was hoping...this is going to be a very long and challenging ride if I have nausea the entire ride. I would rather have any type of pain than nausea. The only thing I was worried about is how was I going to get enough nutrition to make up from the swim, get me through the bike and carry me on the run. I had to get in anything into my stomach. I rode on and took sips of my infinit and tried to take in a bee stinger wafer.
I stopped a few more times at the aid stations for a pit stop. I was hoping if I could vomit a couple more times, the nausea would go away...no luck. Fortunately, I was able to get down a full bottle of infinit, some water, salt tabs and a couple of gels. I knew this was not enough nutrition to carry me through the run but I was hoping the extra calories I took in the weeks prior to the race would help me through. Once the most difficult 112 miles I have ever ridden was done, I was relieved and could now focus on the run. If I could get to the first aid station and drink a coke, I was hoping this would settle my nausea.
T2: The volunteers are amazing; they took my bike and handed me my bike to run bag. I changed my shoes, grabbed my visor, got lathered up with sunscreen and then was off. My legs felt great since I never got to push it on the bike. I was hoping for a decent time for 26.2 miles.
Run: For the most part, the run went pretty well. I was able to control the nausea with coke and knowing that the end was near. I was going to be an ironman today even if I had to walk it! I had coke, sips of IM perform, water, and chicken broth. At miles 8 and 18, the chicken broth was heavenly. The salt was awesome and the warm chicken broth was warming when the temperature started dropping. I was reminded how much my IT- band hates downhill. By the time I was on my second loop of 13-miles, my IT-band was screaming at me. It forced me to slow down my pace. I was surprised that I didn't hit 'the dreaded wall' at mile 20 as in a marathon. I learned that by the time you hit mile 20 in an Ironman, you don't think about 6.2 miles left to go, but only 6.2 miles left to go out of 140.6 miles...easy:)
Summary: I think the most important parts of training and doing an Ironman is to thank family and friends for their support and patience, and to have fun!! Training for an Ironman can be a selfish sport because it does take away from work, family and friends, but it doesn't always have to be that selfish. Looking back over the past 6 months, I got to bike from Boulder to Santa Fe and ran in LA to Washington DC with great friends. I created some awesome memories which no one can take away. I also hope that through my dedication to this sport that I have inspired a few to do a triathlon, run, bike, or just be more active. My main goal was to cross the finish line. I not only achieved that goal, but was pretty happy with my time. of 14 hours, 8 minutes and 4 seconds. The feeling is indescribable of being able to show up to the starting line, the incredible support you feel from fellow triathletes, volunteers and crowd, and knowing that as you cross the finish line you are an Ironman. If there is one piece of advice I can give is to enjoy the moment, smile and have fun. Drink in the moment, take in the crowds, listen for your name and go through the chute with a smile. You only get one chance to be a first-time Ironman.
Monday, July 16, 2012
Meet F4 Ironman Athlete Russ Klein
F4 Athlete Profile: Russ Klein
Everyone enjoys hearing a great athlete success story. Year after year, F4 boasts endless great accomplishments by its athletes. One of those inspiring stories is Russ Klein.
Growing up in Brooklyn, NY and Florida, Russ Klein was a self-proclaimed couch potato. He moved to Colorado with his wife, Ashley, in 1999 and is an attorney with the Colorado Attorney General’s office. After suffering a heart attack in 2003, the then 320-pound non-athlete knew that he had to change his lifestyle or he was going to die.
As part of his post-heart attack recovery, Russ set a goal: He would walk or run the 2004 Bolder Boulder. “I was at home a lot basically recovering and getting better,” he shares. “As part of my recovery, I would walk around my neighborhood. I swear that my loop—about 2/10th of a mile—felt like 4 miles!” Russ’ wife Ashley joined to help keep him motivated and moving. “This was really my first endeavor into any kind of fitness,” he says.
In May 2004, Russ finished the 6.2-mile Bolder Boulder course in 70 minutes. “Ashley took a photo of me and, to this day, I refer to that as the best race I ever had,” he says. From that day on, Russ and Ashley committed to continue living an active lifestyle.
The next year, they signed up for the Bolder Boulder training club and met Scott Fliegelman. “We didn’t know what we were getting into, and at the first meeting, it was a little bit intimidating. I felt like I was doing good things, but when I looked around and saw a lot of really fit people, I started asking myself ‘what the heck am I doing here?’” Scott and his supportive group of coaches made the couple feel comfortable and welcome.
Following that Bolder Boulder, Russ ventured into marathoning, finishing both the Dallas White Rock and Boulder Backroads events. “I always thought you had to be insane to run a marathon,” laughs Russ. “Apparently, something was seriously wrong with me.”
When Scott started FastForward Sports, Russ and Ashley joined. His first year Russ signed up for the full 5430 triathlon series. “I went through those races and had some times that were fine, but they are funny to look at now,” says Russ, recalling that his first time in the long course race, he was literally the last person out of the water and was third from last to finish. But he finished the race, and that was a huge accomplishment for this slowly “shrinking” man.
“As Ashley and I got into more regular training, we knew we had to make a lot of changes at home,” explains Russ. So they went through their cupboards and got rid of every bit of junky food. Even family got involved. “Ashley’s mom came to visit and helped go through the cabinets. Christmas dinner became squash and broccoli versus that southern-style green bean casserole.”
Change is never easy, though. “I am still on a lot of medication and eating healthy is really hard sometimes, but I am focused on going full throttle to be healthy. Ashley is going full throttle as well, so she is definitely a partner in the whole deal,” says Russ. Throughout the changes, Russ shares that F4 has been an invaluable tool in his life goals.
“Basically you get friends from where you live, work or from activities. Gaining a bunch of friends who are in a fitness program, if you don’t show up for a couple of weeks, they keep you honest,” says Russ. “I would have never taken on triathlon without F4. I am grateful to my coaches Michael, Philip, Anna and Scott.”
This year, weighing in at a very healthy 191 pounds, Russ is focusing on a return to Ironman Wisconsin after being pulled off the bike course in 2008 close to mile 95 because he didn’t make the time cut. “I will be taking my vengeance on the course,” he says.
Ashley will be there at the finish line cheering him on. “I’ll need someone to help carry me after the finish line,” laughs Russ. Our guess is that he’ll be just fine on his own two feet.
Coach Lynnda Profile
Learn more bout Coach Lynnda Best- Wiss...
Meet an F4 Coach: Lynnda Best-Wiss
At FastForward, we are lucky to have a group of professionally trained coaches with unique backgrounds and experiences that they can share with our array of awesome athletes. One of those coaches is 61-year-old Lynnda Best-Wiss who—even as cliché as it sounds—proves that you’re never too old to be active and learning new things. Coach Lynnda is the current National Duathlon Champion (standard distance) and is leading one of the summer/fall running groups in Boulder.
Lynnda has been an athlete most of her life. She started running seriously at age 14 and ran track in high school. At 15, she held the National Junior Olympic record for the half mile. From ages 14-17, she held several state track and field records. In college in New Mexico, she discovered field hockey. After graduating, she married and continued in sports of some kind. “I had sort of quit running and my first husband was a pro skier, so my life got built around winter activities,” says Lynnda. A school teacher, Lynnda also got to share her love of sports with students by coaching middle school girls in volleyball, basketball, and track and field.
Unfortunately, her first marriage didn’t work out, so Lynnda decided to go back to school and moved to Texas with her son to attend University of Texas at Austin. There, she re-discovered running. “It was fabulous when I started running again,” she says. After graduating, she made her way to Boulder, where she got into running races and started cycling. She also met her current husband.
Over the years, though, Lynnda struggled with injury, mostly dealing with a cranky SI joint. “I went to the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine and they fixed my SI joint,” she says. “They also recommended I try swimming for cross-training.” At age 52, Lynnda took up swimming and then jumped into triathlons the following year. She got hooked on the sport.
But she still struggled with injuries. She’d do a big race and then spend the rest of the year recovering. Lucky for her she discovered Bob Cranny, a physical therapist at Altitude Physical Therapy. “Bob helped me get through a number of races, but his best advice was ‘you need a new coach’,” says Lynnda. That’s when she met Scott Fliegelman in 2010.
“I had been training with a team of women that unfortunately fell apart, so when I met Scott I brought along as many of the women as I could to also join FastForward,” explains Lynnda. “Scott coached me and then he eventually invited me to join F4 as a coach. [Lynnda is a USAT-certified coach.] I started with guiding the holiday running program.”
This summer, Lynnda is leading one of the summer/fall running groups. “Part of my responsibility as a coach is to be a sounding board for my athletes, to provide advice and guidance, and to get them to the start line injury-free. I like to see what I can do to help people have realistic goals and to make sure that they’re not over-reaching or putting too much into their expectations that they might be too disappointed.” Lynnda adds, “I encourage my athletes to have good, realistic goals and explain that if they follow our program and don’t push their limits that they’ll get to the start line and have a great race.”
“I am so happy and grateful to be with F4,” says Lynnda. “Scott has been a fantastic coach and helped me train for the Hawaii Ironman last year. I missed the podium by three minutes, but I had the most wonderful experience. I was physically and mentally ready. The stars were aligned.”
Lynnda acknowledges that as you get older, you need to train smart. “When I was younger, I would run like the wind and my body healed more quickly after an injury. But Scott has trained—and challenged—me that sometimes you have to hold back. I have a 60-year-old body, but I want to go faster!” Lynnda laughs.
What she’s learned over the years and from Scott and fellow F4 coaches, Lynnda shares with her athletes to help them achieve their goals. “You’re never too old to learn,” she says. And she speaks from real-life experience.
Coach Lea on Avoiding Injury
Coach Lea offer some great suggestions for avoiding injury this season...
The following tips come from Boulder-based F4 coach Lea Stenerson. Lea has enjoyed coaching and instructing a variety of sports for over 20 years, and has been working with FastForward Sports since its inception in 2005. She holds a bachelor’s degree in sports medicine and a master’s degree in exercise physiology. In addition to coaching and personal training, Lea teaches anatomy and physiology at Regis University.
Over the next couple of months, our overall training volume will be increasing and our long runs will be jumping up in distance and duration. As such, it’s important to keep the following in mind with regards to injuries, and, more specifically, getting on top of any pain quickly.
Typically, pain in a joint is not "good" pain, but is more likely an injury. Muscle pain is a bit more difficult to distinguish. When we do an activity that our muscles are not specifically conditioned to (e.g., hills, extra speed, extra distance, a new movement, etc,), the muscles undergo micro-tearing, which sometimes causes soreness. You may not experience this discomfort until up to 48 hours post workout (this is called DOMS or delayed onset muscle soreness).
After a workout, there will also be some lactate build-up in the muscles, adding to the feeling of pain and soreness. The muscles will build themselves back up (if given adequate recovery), eventually becoming stronger and allowing us to tolerate the specific activity better.
Since an "injury" (especially an overuse injury) can start off as a sore muscle, it can be difficult to tell initially if it is more serious or just soreness that will resolve. For example, after an initial (or harder) hill workout, it’s more or less expected that you will have some sore calves, hamstrings, glutes and possibly hip flexors too. This may show up in one side of your body more than another due to terrain, muscle imbalances and our individual running biomechanics; we’re not always as symmetrical as we'd like to think! This is normal and is from stressing these muscles with the extra resistance (i.e., hills). It will typically feel like tightness with a little tenderness and will go away within a few days after it starts.
More intense throbbing and/or shooting pain is a warning sign and will require more rest. However, any pain/soreness gone unchecked can turn into something more serious and debilitating.
Following are some things to keep in mind to do as soon as possible to avoid letting a sore muscle or mild pain go too far.
· Light recovery running/walking/cycling/swimming (20-30 min. easy) will help blood circulate to the muscles, encouraging recovery.
· After hard workouts, it's a good idea to ICE massage (i.e., ice in a dixie cup) any sore muscles or painful areas for 10-12 minutes. Regular ice in a bag (or frozen peas/corn/blueberries/cranberries) for 12-15 minutes followed by light massaging will also work. Light stretching and using a foam roller will also be helpful.
· Ibuprofen (600 mg) will assist not only with the pain but also with inflammation and has been suggested by some after tough workouts.
In general, the rule is to ice acute injuries (especially after workouts) with light massage and stretching. If the pain continues, rest will be required. After 72 hours you can start using contrast (heat 5 min., ice 5 min., then repeat 2-3x), or just heat as long as the inflammation is mostly gone. And, finally, but very importantly, seek medical advice from your doctor whenever in doubt!
F4 Bike Decals
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Get a packet of personalized F4 Bike decals for only $6...
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