Monday, January 27, 2014

Race recap: Lifetime Fitness Indoor Triathlon - Orland Park

Lifetime Fitness opened their indoor triathlon racing series over the weekend. The first of 10 races being held around Chicagoland was in Orland Park, IL. I have been eyeballing indoor tris for quite some time. I instead leaped right ahead into outdoor racing. With triathlon season still being a while away, this was the perfect way to get a triathlon fix.

Indoor triathlons are perfect for anyone that may be little tri-curios. Because the time is capped, everyone can go at their own pace and do what they can within 10 minutes for the swim, 30 minutes for the bike, and 20 minutes for the run.

On the way to the club I got lost, ran out of windshield wiper fluid and could barely see the road ahead of me, then crashed my car into pile of snow in an empty parking lot while trying to make a U-turn. So you can probably guess I was late to my wave start. Thankfully there was ONE more wave after mine that I was able to join.

The pool was downstairs and the bikes and treadmills were upstairs. Being spaced out, the set up actually simulated transition in an outdoor tri. There was a 10 minute transition between the swim and bike and a 5 minutes transition between the bike and run.

The swim (10 laps): I was worried because I had not been in the water since August. After a couple of warm-up laps I felt comfortable. The pool being only 4 feet deep helped. I swam freestyle and took rest breaks when needed on the wall. The swim went pretty quickly.

The bike (7.7 miles): This was the longest and most boring part! There’s nothing like riding a bike outdoors with the wind whipping by. The great thing was that music was allowed on the bike and treadmill. So it became a game of pedaling to the beat of each song.

The run (1.60 miles): I started off strong; going hard for the first mile but quickly hit the wall and took two walking breaks before finishing up 20 minutes. The run also seemed to go by in a flash.

Post race there were protein bars, Gatorade and coconut water on hand for replenishment. The staff was great, friendly and helpful. Our wrangler, Coach Julie (I think), guided us through transition and was a great motivator during each discipline. There are zero pictures of myself, but several ladies from my run group completed their first triathlon in an earlier wave and documented the race well!

The indoor tri was a great experience; I hope to complete at least one more before the series ends. If you’re interested in a triathlon but are intimidated, an indoor tri is a great introduction to the sport.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Upcoming race: Life Time Indoor Triathlon + Paleo update

Oh, how I miss summer right about now. Like much of the country, Chicago is in a deep freeze and buried under snow right now. The last thing I should be thinking about is jumping into a 12 feet of water. But it’s indoor triathlon season!

This weekend I will participate in my first indoor triathlon. The Life Time Indoor Tri series is designed to introduce the sport of triathlon to newcomers and provide a challenging training tool for veteran triathlete. Based on that spectrum of triathlon, I give myself veteran status . . .

This weekend’s race consists of a 10-minute swim in an indoor pool, a 10 minute transition, 30 minutes in the cycling studio, a 5 minute transition, and 20 minutes on the treadmill. Sounds fun, and fast!

Today marks the start of week three of Eating Paleo. The latest snack I mastered is kale chips. How yummy are these things?!

Stayed tuned for my first race report of 2014, and my experience with the Life Time Indoor Tri series.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Going Paleo: Week 2

My Paleo diet experiment is still going strong. I did however have one cheat moment over the weekend.

I craved pancakes; and the carb craving is a strong, evil one. Saturday I decided to have pancakes for brunch and it did not dawn on me until I was in route to IHOP that I can’t eat pancakes. Carb craving blocked my rational thinking! I decided rather than deprive myself I would order an omelet and split a short stack. The good thing is that the carb craving was satisfied after just a few bites.

The scale is moving in the right direction. I’m down 2 pounds from day 1. That’s a pound per week average which is a healthy rate. These are a few of my meal and snack choices for the week:

I’m halfway through my 30 day challenge and I feel great!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Going Paleo: Week 1

If I had to choose one word to describe my experience with eating primal so far it would be . . . fantastic! I’ve eaten a Paleo diet for one week now. I can truly say I don’t feel as though I’m being deprived in any way. There are a couple of things I missed; my daily oatmeal breakfast, and beans (not together of course). I had my cheat moments with dairy. Mainly with cheese! Thankfully, the consumption of cheese is a somewhat debated topic amongst practicing Paleos. While I haven’t completely eliminated dairy, I have greatly reduced my intake. I don’t miss bread, or processed sweets (i.e. candy).

It was helpful to start with a thorough grocery list. It’s been easier to create different meal combinations with a nice variety of food. I came up with some pretty interesting plates last week. I discovered spaghetti squash and Paleo banana pancakes. Both are fun to make and pretty tasty!

Some of my typical meals last week were:

Breakfast: Turkey bacon, eggs with spinach, and a side of fruit.
Snacks: raisins, apples with sunflower butter, zucchini ‘fries’, boiled eggs.
Lunch/Dinner: Tuna with avocado; spaghetti squash, baked chicken and red sauce; Sautéed eggplant with tomato and salad.

I haven’t made it to the gym in forever. I jump rope at home to burn calories. My measurements and weight have been logged to gauge how this diet has affected me on day 30. Now at the end of week one, Paleo is so good, so far.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

So you want to go Paleo?

Happy New Year! Let’s talk about the Runners World 30 day challenge. I did not fit in thirty miles in thirty days. Between a sick pup, bitterly cold weather and not being able to make it to the gym regularly I logged a whole 7 miles! I snuck in a few sessions of The 30 Day Shred too. So another 30 day thing may not work well for my lifestyle, but I’m doing one anyway. I’m challenging myself to eat like a Paleolithic.

My diet is not so great. I eat a lot of frozen foods and not very balanced meals. A plate of French fries is a typical evening meal. My goal is that Paleo will encourage me to eat more whole foods and improve my meal-making process.

This was my breakfast this morning, eggs, turkey bacon, half an avocado, and strawberries. Yum! In a nutshell, Paleo is a very low-carb way of eating which encourages your body to burn stored fat.

This is a fantastic blog I found about a 30 day Paleo challenge. It has a lot of useful information, workouts and a grocery list. Here’s to a better outcome than my last challenge!

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