Wednesday, April 30, 2008

UR's Julie Rechel on her Future as a Triathlete

This is a cross post with my other blog, the Near West End News.

I was lucky to talk briefly with Julie Rechel, the Richmonder who won the Twenty-12 Talent Identification Triathlon in Tuscaloosa, AL, last week. I asked her if she had any idea, going into this race, that she might win it. “I had no idea!” she said. “I looked up all my competition — and I was going to be so excited if I was in the first half (of the finishers). It really took me by surprise.”
Rechel is a distance runner at UR who is described on the UR website as a three sport athlete. The three sports? Swimming, running, tennis. Since this was a talent competition to scout for potential triathletes for the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, you’d think that it would drastically change her plans. But it hasn’t. “Right now the only thing it changes is that I’ll now race U23 Elite.” She says if the Olympics are in her future, it is far in the future.
Rechel is both talented and humble. “I’m not particularly outstanding at any one (event) but I”m good at them all. I can can improve in each, but there is not one that stands out as my weakness.” In training she said she’s been focusing on the bike leg, biking mostly on Old Gun Road and Riverside Drive, and she’s glad she spent so much time on the bike because that is what ended up winning it for her. It didn’t hurt that she had a personal best on the run either.“I had a phenomenal run. I dropped 1 minute off the best run of my life.” Previously, at a 5K that was not part of a triathlon, her best time was 18.52 but in this race even after the swim and pushing herself on the bike, she came in at 18.39.
“I love this sport of triathlon. I love the training. I love the athletes”

Monday, April 28, 2008

National Duathlon Festival Comes to Richmond

I just want to say it is a sad, sad thing when you have National Championships in a city and the local newspaper just barely covers the event -- burying the news in the middle or back of the sports section.
I mean first I looked to see if there was any coverage on the front page of Sunday's paper. Nope. Then, I looked on the front page of the sports section. Nope. I never did find the coverage from Saturday's off road race at the National Duathlon Festival, until I looked it up online. And today, the coverage for the National's road race was buried in the back of the sports section.
Meanwhile, at Inside Triathlon online, they are also covering the winners. I guess it is just one more reason why I'm not a fan of the local paper.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Shark Kills Triathlete in Ocean Swim

My deepest sympathy goes out the the family of Dave Martin tonight, a retired vetrinarian and traithlete who was killed by a shark yesterday in off of the coast of California.

SOLANA BEACH, Calif. - It was a perfect spring morning for an ocean
With the sun shining in a clear blue sky, Dave Martin and his triathlon
training group swam past the surfers at Tide Beach on their regular Friday
course through cool glassy waters about 150 yards out.
Somewhere below, a
shark — presumed to be a great white — was lurking, possibly on the hurt for a
seal or sea lion. It struck around 7 a.m., charging at Martin from below and
lifting him vertically out of the water, both legs in its jaws, its serrated
teeth slicing deep, fatal gashes.
"They saw him come up out of the water, scream 'shark,' flail his arms and
go back under," said Rob Hill, a member of the Triathlon Club of San Diego, who
was running along the beach when the attack happened.
Martin, 66, was rescued
by two swimmers who had been 20 yards ahead. They raced back and dragged him to
shore in a little cove shielded by 50-foot bluffs. A lifeguard truck took Martin
up to a lifeguard station on the bluff where he was pronounced dead at 7:49
A terrifying but rare attackMartin, a retired veterinarian, was the
victim of a terrifying but exceptionally rare attack. Only person worldwide died
in a confirmed, unprovoked shark attack last year, though the annual average in
recent years is about four, according to the University of Florida's
International Shark Attack File.

Friday, April 25, 2008

USAT Duathlon National Championships in Richmond this Weekend

Note: This is a cross post from my other blog, the Near West End News.

I'm hoping that Redfish and Daisy want to go see the USAT Duathlon National Championships this weekend. If I can convince them, I have a hunch we will all come home inspired!

The USA Triathlon Duathlon National Championships come to Richmond this weekend. If you are not racing, consider volunteering or being a spectator. This is a huge two-day format featuring off-road events on Saturday and on-road events on Sunday. The National Duathlon Festival has attracted a broad range of athletes from far and wide plus the opportunity to watch the winner of national championships cross the finish line. Here is the official schedule and the all important road closures.

Official Schedule
Saturday, April 26, 2008
7:30 a.m. Off-Road Youth Age Group Races (7-8, 9-10, 11-12) –1k run, 4k bike, 1k run 8:30 a.m. Off-Road Junior Age Group Races (13-15, 16-19) — 5k run, 10k bike, 2.5k runSport Race (non-championship) — 5k run, 10k bike, 2.5k run 10:30 a.m. Off-Road Championships –10k run, 30k bike, 5k run
Sunday, April 27, 2008
7 a.m. Age Group Races — 10k run, 40k bike, 5k run 9:30 a.m. Elite Races –10k run, 40k bike, 5k run - Draft Legal 11:30 a.m. Youth Nationals (7-8, 9-10 and 11-12) — 1k run, 5k bike, 1k run 12 Noon Junior Nationals (13-15 and 16-19) — 5k run, 20k bike, 2.5k run - Draft Legal 1 p.m. Sport Race (non-championship) –5k run, 20k bike, 2.5k run

Road Closures for Friday, April 25th
2nd Street from Byrd Street to Lee Bridge closed – 7:00 p.m. Friday through 1:00 p.m. Sunday

Road Closures for Saturday, April 26th
2nd Street from Byrd Street to Lee Bridge closed – all day.Byrd Street between 2nd Street and 3rd Streets closed – all day.
Road Closures for Sunday, April 27th
2nd Street from Byrd Street to Lee Bridge closed – Until 1:00 p.m.Byrd Street between 2nd Street and 3rd Streets closed – Until 1:00 p.m.The curb lane of the Lee Bridge closed in both directions — 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Riverside Drive closed from Lee Bridge access ramps to 42nd Street — 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.42nd Street from Riverside Drive to Springhill Avenue partially closed, police present to monitor and control — 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Parking on both sides of 42nd Street prohibited — 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Running, Change up the Speed. Variety is the Key.

Verticle Man, over at Life is a TRI, linked to this great article in the NY Times about runner, and Olympic hopeful Sara Hall and how she is breaking into new territory with her training. I will never be a fast runner, and seriously wonder if any of the drills she offers will help me as long as I continue to use the Galloway Method of combining running and walking, but still, the information, especially the video, was very informative.
Most of all, I just love to watch her run. She is beautiful, like a gazelle. And you can tell she is a runner, just by looking at her walk. She covers everything from form, to ice baths, to distances and why she runs differently and different speeds on different days. Check it out.
Last month they featured another great article on swim form and training that was also hugely helpful to me.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Local Athlete Wins Twenty -12 Talent Identification Triathlon

Congratulations to local University of Richmond student, and Olympic hopefu Julie Rechel, who placed first (female) in the Twenty-12 Talent Identification Triathlon in Tuscaloosa, this weekend. Luckily, I get to cover it on both my blogs!

Julie Rechel, age 20, of the University of Richmond, finished as the first place female at the Twenty-12 Talent Identification Triathlon in Tuscaloosa, Alabama this weekend. She won the race with at time of 1:06:57.Sunday’s race was a chance for USA Triathlon or USAT officials to scout and develop talent for the Olympic Games in 2012 or 2016.
Rechel, a student at the University of Richmond, said she didn’t expect to be out front on the bike in the women’s race. “I just held on and brought it home on the run,” she said.

Swimming, It's Over Already?

Good news: After last night's workout, I was sad it was over. It seemed to short (although it was an hour), and I was ready for more. That is a really good sign, since I need to get used to swimming 2 plus hours often. I just love the University of Richmond pool. It is so deep and so clear! The workout just flew by.
I swam with a speedy group of TRIgirls: Karen B. and Shelly, and coach G. It was perfect. Karen challenged us to go faster but, I wasn't lagging behind either. Last season, I had trouble keeping up with Karen and Shelly, so I see this as a good sign. I really didn't feel fast at all. Funny how who you swim (or bike, or run) with changes your perspective on how fast you are! Last Thursday at Masters, I probably swam slower but felt faster as I kept lapping the boys in my lane. Last night, I was faster, but felt slower, as I was challenge to keep up.

Thursday night, Trigirl 40 and I are aiming for 4 miles....including Masters and then staying late to complete the rest. This will be a new distance PR, so I'm excited to see how I'll manage.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Bay Swim in the Pool, I'm Getting Dizzy

I am having my own internal battles with the Chesapeake Bay swim. Things are coming along. The date is fast approaching. Mentally, the training in the pool is tough. I can't wash the clorine away. I'm getting good a flip turns though! But feeling dizzy from so many.

Ironwoman Canada, is giving me lots of good Mojo. I think, slowly, I am earning her respect. It means alot to me. Swam masters on Thursday, then swam another hour straight. Still no training schedule. Decided I don't really need one. I'll manage.
I'll try to squeeze in nearly 4 miles this Thursday. A solid 4 next week. Then 4.5 then 5. Then taper.
Friday nights in May will now all be spent swimming in the James River. Still need to figure out if I can manage in a wetsuit, or if I'll go without.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Riding Through the Storm

It's true. I've been in a bit of a rut.
Which is why riding at Pony Pasture yesterday put me in a good mood. It reminded me of why I ride, and why I love being a team leader for TRIgirls. Riding a 5 mile loop along the river with herons, ducks, geese and kayakers would put anyone in a good mood. Riding with a new team of baby pinks reminds me of my first days of getting into the sport. Where 15 miles seemed like a long ride. Speed wasn't important. Everything seemed new and intriguing. And plenty of smiles were going around just at the sheer joy of being out and about at the beautiful river in perfect weather. Well, it did rain for a few minutes, but no one's complaining.
And, after racing home from my ride to get Daisy to her soccer game on time, only to hear a severe thunderstorm warning on the way, and having the game get called as the lightning started to strike, made me thing of the noble triathletes on my team, who were still out on the road, on Route 5, and in Goochland, biking. And running 16 miles all over Richmond. Getting flats, and getting buzzed by big guys in big trucks with big wheels....all in that same scary thunderstorm. By the way, Daisy and Redfish were cowering in the back seat of my car, holding their fingers to their ears, looking very scared. And THEY were in a CAR! So, this is an ode to those of you who managed to cycle through that storm or run through it. I promise you on race day, nothing will be quite as scary. And now, you are ready for anything!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Technological Doping: What is the Cost?

I recently came across a really interesting article about technological doping, thanks to another local blogger, Jon Becker. Basically, Speedo's new high-tech LZR Racer swimsuit makes swimmers feel like they are swimming downhill. The suit uses NASA technology, and sound comparable to wearing a high end tri-specific wetsuit -- It gives compression, and a bit of buoyancy. So the question is, is it really technological doping if anyone can buy one? Do we want to make swimming about equipment, like so many other sports are? Actually, until now, swimming was the one sport where equipment doesn't matter. Only what Mother Nature gave you and what you do with it matters.
I have an idea. Fair is fair, lets make everyone swim naked.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Why You Shouldn't Store Things in your Bra When You Run

I just g0t back from the doctor. I know, I know. You are saying AGAIN! I'm sure you think I'm a hypochondriac. And, maybe I am. BUT, wait until you hear this story. ANNNN I am talking to you!
Do not put things in your bra while you are running! I repeat, do not! Apparently one doesn't have nerve endings there.....or else I would have realized that I was tearing my skin to little bits with each step of my 10K. Ok, let me back track a little bit.
Based on some advice I received (will not mention names)....but I will say she is the Notorius Bra Stuffer, I put my asthma inhaler in my sports bra during the 10K. I could have put it in my back pocket, but, well, it looked kinda funny back there. Do I have to admit here that Mr. Preschool actually warned me not to do this, for this exact reason! Thank God I have a sense of humor, right. Because when I got home and took a shower, I had the most gory gash. I will not mention any more details. Except to say, that it hurt like crazy when I took a shower. I swear I thought that was vinegar coming out of the showerhead it hurt so much. And, now it is now infected. And, booo hoooo, pity party for me, my doctor says I can not do the open water swim in the James River on Sunday. I am so sad. I've been looking forward to this for weeks. Even took the day off of work to go. On the bright side, at least I have a funny story to tell.
Would you believe me if I told you my (male) doctor told me he did the same thing?! I have his number if you want it. Apparently, either this is a common mistake!?! or my doctor was really going out of his way to make sure I didn't feel bad. And, he threw in a tetnus shot for good measure.
Oh, well. It is what it is.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Monument Avenue 10K Race Results

The TRIgirls ran a soggy Monument Avenue 10K today. Definately not a PR for me, but no surprise there, since I've been sick and still getting over it. Wasn't a huge negative split for me....but almost....more like even splits -- 39 and 39. Well, at least I'm consistant.
Here's my time: 1:18:08
The Half Ironman Dinner was lots of fun....but it is getting late.
Now I think I wanna go to bed. It's been a long day. Maybe a report tomorrow.

The Potomac Videogame-Simulator-Job River

This is the weirdest typo I've ever seen. It came to me in an email from USAT regarding the new partnership between The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Nation's Triathlon that was announced today. Perhaps alluding to bloggers concerns that in it's first year the organizers of the The Nations Triathlon race never intended to really let folks swim in the Potomac River. I have no idea if that is true, but last year, the swim went off without a hitch. Anyway, here it is. All I have to say is WEIRD!
Nation's Triathlon is the premiere Olympic distance triathlon in the United
States. Set against the magnificent and patriotic setting of the nation's
capital and its monuments, participants in the Nation's Triathlon will swim 1.5k
in the Potomac Videogame-Simulator-Job River, a course that will take
them under the Memorial Bridge, bike 40k through downtown D.C. , out onto Clara
Barton Parkway and Rock Creek Park, and run 10k through downtown D.C, past the
White House, Washington Monument, National Mall, finishing on the plaza of the
Navy Memorial on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Congratulations to TriSarahTops Team Evotri's Newest Member

Congratulations to Sarah, who won Evotri's second, Making the Team contest. She had a great idea to help kid connect thru a kids triathlon blog. I know she'll make a great addition to Team Evotri.
On another note, I am happy to say that today I was back in the pool. Yay! I swam for 90 minutes straight, only stopping to fix my goggles and take a sip of water. I felt like I kept a good pace and that I could have gone for alot longer if It was race day. I wasn't really tired when I was done, but just a little water-logged. The Y has a rule you can only use the daycare for 2 hours, so I figured I'd better go get Redfish before they started wondering about me. Also, an official training schedule is coming from Coach G, so soon I'll be able to be more confident that the training I'm doing Is the training I NEED to be doing.
Mostly I'm just happy to say that my Z-Pack is still working. Speaking of which, I need to go grab my pill for today. ON to a WET and soggy, sleety Monument 10K tomorrow. Hmmm, maybe all of this swiming will come in handy.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Spring Break Ick-Sick

Last Thursday, a whole week ago, after the early morning run I felt great. It was Spring Break, and oh so nice to actually be able to get a coffee with the TRIgirls, since I didn't have to rush home. But later in the day I felt bad and had chills and a fever. And by Friday night I was really ill, so much so that I cancelled my date with Mr. Preschool even though we had a free sitter -- my mom.
Friday I felt OK, good enough to help the kids through Stu's World Wide Triathlon. Saturday I felt OK, at least in the morning. Good enough for 2 loops at West Creek in the cold. And luckily, we still had a free sitter in town so I got to ride with Mr. Preschool for the first time in many years! We both agree it was the best part of spring break.
Anyway, I limped through the rest of the week, but by Tuesday night had a full on ear infection, migrane, pink eye, sore throat, cough and general feeling that I'd be lucky if I made it into daylight ever again. A quick trip to the doctor and a Zpak later, I'm feeling much better. All of my aches and pains have been replaced by a stomach ache from the medicine.

So, I think for the Monument Avenue 10K I'll be better enough to race, but not 100 percent. I'm hoping with a few more days and lots of water, I'll be good as new. Then back in the pool!