Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sledpulls, boats and Bike Death

Sled pulls summer 2007-first year on the these involve way more weight and we are doing them indoors on a track.

Hello All!

Half way through our second week in Calgary! Only 10 days till we can go home!! YES!

Things are still going really well here in Calgary as far as training goes. We finished off last week with sledpulls (death by sprinting with sleds stacked with weights). Going in Andrew didn't know if I would be able to do sleds as sprinting with weights was not something that i have even got close to yet in my rehab. I decided to give it a try and just stop if it got too painful. I was able to do the entire thing! GREAT!!! Saturday my knee was stiff and where my staple is hurt but other than that is held up! Just one more step in the right direction! Friday night we went and saw a movie and had a campfire in Steph Irwins backyard (s'mores oh yeah!!), saturday we went boating on ghost lake with Cam Brewington who was on the national team last year and his friend Chris Scheele who is ex-Alberta team. We ended up taking refuge for about 45 minutes under a bridge while a thunder storm passed by! The waiting payed off as afterwards the sun broke out and people were able to wake surf! I have decided to take the summer off water sports just as a precaution. I just don't want to take any chances. Being on the water was great...just being outdoors, listening to music and seeing my friends enjoy and challenge themselves made the experience very worth it! Afterwards we had a bbq on the bank of the lake before heading back into Calgary. Sunday we had an incredible beach volleyball game near the university with Cam, Chris, and my teammates Erik Reid, Kelby Halbert, Steph Irwin, Erin Mielzynski, Britt phelan, Eve Routhier, and Toria Whitney. It was incredibly fun to play volleyball again! I played all throughout highschool and would have loved to go further in that sport! it is definately my favourite sport after skiing (well ones that I have played competitively anyway)!

Monday saw us return to the gym and do lactate testing on the bike. Lactate testing has to do with Lactic Acid not lactating for clarification! We ride a bike starting at 80 watts, every two minutes the watts are increased by 25 watts and a sample of your blood is taken to see how much lactic acid you are producing. yes that means every two minutes your finger is getting pricked by a needle- not good for people who have needle phobia's- like me. You continue to go up watts every two minutes until you hit a lactate of 6 (this would be the equivalent of biking up a VERY steep hill ...6 would be when your legs feel like they are going to fall off...they are no longer able to keep rotating your pedals fast enough to keep your bike upright)...AFTER you hit 6 then they increase the wattage every minute until failure..which usually is only a minute or two after you hit 6. This is when they take your max heartrate...yes you read correctly...MAX heartrate....the fastest your heart can go! Mine maxes out at about 205. To compare...the average humans resting heart rate is about 60 and when running gets to about 150. To get back to what we did on Monday (we only had to go to 6 as this was just a clarification of training zones). My testing showed that I had improved! My heart rates went down in comparison to the amount of lactic acid that I was producing! yes! progress!

Tuesday had us doing a strength workout in the morning and 2 times 15 minute bike sprints in the afternoon ( about 200 watts and heartrate about 175-180). It is a really tough thing to try and distract yourself enough to forget how much these sprints hurt..and for how long you have to keep going! 3 minutes into the workout your mind is pleading at you to stop, your legs are screaming as they are being poisoned by lactic acid and it takes all the mental control you have to stop your hand from pressing the button which will turn down the amount of watts that you are doing. It especially is terrible when your ipod runs out of is the best way to take your mind off of the task at hand!

Today, wednesday, we had to do a 50 km ride. As most of us are pretty tired we decided to try and find a nice flat ride for today. On we found a great looking 50 km loop out inthe foothills. On the map it looked about the shape of BC. Our plan was to ride the top side of the route (yukon/ northwest territories border heading west) then turn down (making the shape of the BC Coast) then riding straight back up (the alberta border) back to our starting point. It would have been the perfect ride-if we had actually followed the correct route! It all started when as a group we passed a fellow roadbiker on highway 22x. I guess getting passed by 4 young women is not something that the average adult make is used to when roadbiking. This particular roadbiker did not like getting passed! He sped up after we passed him and tried to take off. ony we caught him again. This time as we passed he actually reached out and tapped me on the shoulder. I was a little surprised! It turns out he is a retired roadbiking coach...he used to coach our nutritionalist Kelly-Ann (who is one of the most successful Canadian Road Bikers ever)! For the next 15 minutes he rode beside us giving us helpful tips about riding in a "peloton" and how to properly draft and use hand signals for changing leaders and poining out debree etc. It was actually really cool and funny! He couldn't believe what "big" girls we were. After 15 minutes he road off only leaving his name "papa". It was really cool to ride with him but during our little tete-de-tete we missed the exit which would lead us downwards (BC Coast)! We decided to take a parellel route which would take us to the same place. However, this small mis-step at the beginning of our ride led to problems down the line. As we crossed the bottom of our route we misjudged the distance we had gone and missed our upwards exit (Alberta border). We continued further down the road and ended up on a busy highway way past our starting point. By the time we stopped and tried to figure out where we were we had already gone 56 km and were FAR away from our destination. We ended up riding on a busy highway and crossing traffic on an overpass! VERY make matters seem worse there were huge signs along the highway reading DANGEROUS GOODS ROUTE...thats a real feel good sign! In the end we rode for 2 hours and 40 minutes and instead of 50 km's we rode 70 km's! 20 extra kms!!!!! Needless to say we were a grumpy, tired, sore, energy low, hungry group of girls by the end! I really crashed after the ride...I slept in the car ride back home!

Tomorrow we are back in the gym and in the afternoon we are scheduled to go play some squash! Exciting! Friday will entail more sled pulls Yuck!

Until next time!

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