Friday, July 30, 2010

I crashed my bike and now I'm a whimp!

Last Saturday I met my friend Nicole for an early a.m. ride. It had rained the night before and the roads were still wet. Now the major irony about this is that when I was a flatlander in Madison, Wi I wouldn't ride in the rain/wet, but now that I'm in the Connecticut Alps why the hell not. Windy curvy roads w/ some wet on them... bring it on.

This is when it first happened.

We rode the course that we normally ride, but rode it backwards. There are some climbs and descents on this course. Namely ONE (usual climb) that is short and windy, but STEEP required out of the saddle the whole time. Well going down this descent on wet roads apparently requires a lot more caution. I hit the pavement going about 30 miles an hour. Not good!

The good news is 1. I didn't hit either of the two trees I was headed straight for, 2. I didn't break anything, 3. my bike still works. It sucked, but it really could have been much much worse.

Basically I was going down the hill went around the first curve of an S curve and when I came around and saw the second part I knew I was going to fast to make the turn. I hit the breaks... too hard and locked up my wheel. I realized this was happening as my back end started to become my front end. I was able to let up on the breaks and correct this, but I was headed straight for two trees and knew I was going too fast to make the bend. I tried pumping the breaks, but it was too late. I held on far enough to clear the trees then just laid her down. No choice really. I'm sitting there at the base of the tree in a daze and my friend came up and asked if I was alright. I told her I needed a minute. My head was spinning a bit and I was a bit dazed. I did a mental scan of the body and all seemed okay. Nicole said, "Uh, you are sitting in a big ant hill." Indeed I was... right at the base of that tree I NEARLY hit. I got up and was moving okay. Brushed all the ants off myself and pulled all the dead leaves and dirt out of my rear break. I looked over my arm and looked at my leg, but opted not to lift my shorts up. I knew I had road rash, but didn't think looking at it would help. We rode for a bit then I stopped again feeling the need to check my leg out to make sure it was at least free of dirt. I opened up my shorts... YUCK. Poured some water down my leg (OUCH), assessed the bike one more time, and contemplated calling for a ride. I decided I didn't want to be a total pansy.. I wasn't broken, the bike wasn't broken. It was time to ride. We rode the 12 miles home.

OMG the shower was almost the most painful part of this whole experience! Water on exposed nerve endings HURTS! I showered, slapped some second skin and guaze on it and hopped in the car to head to Lake Placid to volunteer at Ironman. It was sore, but not too bad.

I had to change the second skin daily and had to tape quaze on the outside to catch all the oozy stuff coming out. I ran on it on Sunday and it was okay ... I was definitely aware of it, but more like a big bad bruise.

The time it hurt the most was the night I tried to 'dry it out'.. I took all the bandages off and let the air hit it.. OMG... exposed nerve endings. It hurt SO bad. I was relieved when I was told to put bacitracin and a bandage on it during the day.

This is after 'drying it out'

Well I'm not quite a week out and I'll be damned if it's not almost healed. I barely have a scab. There are scabs on the areas that were obviously deeper than others. I'm amazed! It's still sensitive and very bruised... though it doesn't look bruised. There are two huge knots under the two main scrapes.

This is yesterday and it looks even better today

So to all the nurses and people I got advice from.. thanks it worked!

Yesterday Nicole and I went out for another ride. We were planning to ride 40 miles, but it started to rain and I bailed at 23 miles or so. There I was looking down a hill and curve very similar to the one I had crashed on ... slick and covered in rain. I couldn't do it. I had to go home. I was a total nancy on every hill on the way home. Breaking and tensing up. I had to keep telling myself to relax. I was so disappointed. I DO NOT want to be a pansy ass, but I knew that if I crashed again yesterday I would have a big mental challenge to get back on the bike. When I came home I asked if Tom had had the same problem when he got back on the bike after a crash he, of course, said no. Which made me feel even more like a pansy. I'm guessing he was in his 20s when this happened so I'm going with that "nothing's gonna get me" attitude of youth.

I was fine on the down hills as long as there were no bends... when it was dry. When it was wet all bets were off. I didn't trust myself or the bike to be able to keep from locking up.

DAMN DAMN DAMN!! Hopefully I'll be back to good as new soon, but I suspect I'll be nervous in the rain for a while.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Shocking realization

So we went to dinner last night... Dad wanted to walk at the mall so we went to Uno's Pizzeria. Granted this is not a place I would normally go ... and Tom certainly wouldn't be excited about it, but it was convenient and air conditioned. (A bit OVER air conditioned, but anyway).

As I was looking at the menu I saw that only two entrees had the nutrition info so that got me curious. I got the handy dandy iPhone out and looked up the nutrition info for the rest of the menu.

I was shocked to discover that all the seafood dishes had WAY MORE fat and calories than both the 8 and 10oz sirloin dishes. Fat AND SATURATED fat. I did a bit more digging b/c I know that the fish itself shouldn't be so damn fatty. My discovery is that chain type placed like this put all sorts of CRAPPY (read trans fat) sauces on their fish dishes and the meat is only meat and some salt. (Barring any sauces that could, I guess, be added to meat dishes as well.) Now I know there are even more issues that crop up w/ the whole meat thing.. like where did it come from, what was it fed... so forth and so on, but really!!!! Next time I'm going for the sirloin man! No sketchy fat (bad fat) laden sauces to just outright RUIN the highly nutritious meal I thought I was having.

Anyway... I know I should have known this to be true... and I'm hopeful that at smaller (read not chains) restaurants they are still using good ol' fashioned butter and lemon not some prepackaged manufactured mystery sauce!

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Results are in...

So it's official I was 3rd in my age group. Who says you don't lose a triathlon in the swim. I TOTALLY lose a triathlon in the swim. Numero uno and I had similar splits on everything else and I beat numero dos in everything but the swim. I realize the number 1s swim was pretty darn quick.. but I could make up time on T1 and the bike and swim.

#1: 52    175 MRS. #1         F  37   1/22   F3539 Superior        CO 1    14:30    1:02   33:17    0:54   24:12 1:13:53
#2: 115   168 MRS. #2         F  36   2/22   F3539 Middlebury      CT 1    17:31    1:38   35:03    1:01   25:43 1:20:53
#3: 147   166 Laura Mount     F  35   3/22   F3539 Bethel          CT 1    23:09    1:53   33:41    0:56   24:38 1:24:15


I am trying this post to your blog from email thing. Is this thing on?

Pat Griskus Sprint Triathlon

Aka.. first triathlon since August 2008. Wow... that shit is hard. Worth it, but hard.

It was a HOT day yesterday so I decided to forgo the wetsuit. Okay, many of you know I am not a stellar swimmer. I'm not trying to be self deprecating here... it's just a fact. I did go out and swim around a bit without it to see how it felt and it felt HOT.. okay, but hot. I decided that anything I would gain from the wet suit would be lost because I would be so damn hot. Not sure if that's true in retrospect, but I'm glad I did it. I showed myself that I can do it ... even though it's harder and slower. the swim course is a bit different... let's see if I can explain it. There are two rows of buoys coming off the beach at an angle meeting at the top of a triangle. Waves start from left and right on each line of buoys. When you hit the top of the triangle you turn and come down the middle of the triangle together w/ your friends from the other line of buoys. Well this is all well and good... except when someone strays from their line of buoys (which we all know happens quite a bit in triathlons) and comes straight at you and hits you in the lip w/ their forehead while you are siting. I got my wits about me and kept going assuming I would have a fat lip. Thankfully it's split, but not fat.

Out in 22 minutes. While the official results aren't out I'm pretty certain I was either last or almost last in my wave. UGH. Must learn to use my legs. I basically pull myself through the race. So for you swimmers.. next time you toe the line use your pull buoy and you'll have a decent idea of how I get through .5 miles of swimming... minus your hips sinking every time you site! I think I spent too much time w/ the pull buoy back in the beginning bc I outright FORGET to kick.

Out of the water and to the bike. My transition was slow b/c I was having some trouble w/ my timing chip. It was coming off and I had to take it off and reposition it w/ my shaky "I just pulled myself for .5 miles" arms.

This course had a couple of technical descents, but I wouldn't say it had a lot of climbing.. more rollers w/ one out of the saddle climb. I felt great on the down hills. Felt strong and confident in my bike handling (I did get the tri bike out for the event), but on the flats (well false flats w/ slight uphill) I felt weak. My quads and hip flexors were NOT loving that. Flats were good. I only got passed by a handful of people on the bike and was frankly embarrassed by how many people I passed from my swim wave. SERIOUSLY! I did want for better mile markers in this race as I need to figure out how to change sports quickly on my Garmin (bc I haven't done a tri since I got it) so I opted not to use it. I felt okay about my bike, but know I could do better. I'm going easy on myself since I haven't spent a ton of time on my bike and haven't spent any time really working on speed.

Transition okay... almost ran out w/ my pump and tube in my shirt so I had to back track a bit to ditch them.

Now my favorite... the run. We ran down a big hill, flat for a bit then turned around to run up the big hill. As I ran out of transition I saw one of Tom's co-workers that was running the race w/ a relay team (aka on fresh legs). I don't know this woman at all really and certainly have no idea what kind of runner she is, but I tried to keep up with her. No dice. I kept her in my sites for most of the run, but lost her on that blasted hill. It took me a mile before I felt like I could breathe (first time the whole race) and then fell into a groove. I was looking to catch my friend Nicole. She is a stellar swimmer and I knew she would have a huge lead on me out of the water (turns out is was about 8 mins.. ugh), but I figured I would run her down on the bike...nope. So now I was really trying to find her. I didn't catch her until the last mile. I saw her at the turn around and tried to pick it up. I didn't think I would catch her if I didn't do it before the big hill. She's got more experience w/ the blasted hills and I thought she would tough it out longer than I did. I finally caught her in the middle of the hill and finished only about a minute or two in front of her. :)

My favorite part of the race was the finish shoot. As we turned the corner to head in a guy passed me ... quite easily I might add ... well I wasn't going to have him pass me right there at the end. I picked it up and pushed as hard as I could. It hurt. Just before the line I let out a grunt and he heard me and picked it up. Someone told me I 'won', but I'm pretty sure we came in together. The guy smiled and patted me on the back. Ah a little friendly competition.

All in all a good time. As always a learning experience. I do think I prefer the long stuff where I can actually have time to catch my breath and get in a groove more. Not big and giving it everything for 1.25 hours... I think that was about my time. Not sure yet. Good news is it's 10 mins faster than both the sprint tris I did back in 2007.