Week #5: SOS + Ironman 70.3 Augusta


If you are reading this post then I guess it’s safe to say that we survived Tropical Storm Cindy, but man … what a mess. We’ve had so. much. rain. It was ridiculous. I spent more time under an umbrella (ella, ella, eh, eh, eh) this week than I have in YEARS!


As usual, I’m in pink and Daniel is in navy.

Monday: 5 miles (8:22 pace)
Monday: 5 miles (8:22 pace)

Starting the week off with a loop has become a fairly standard thing these days. Usually the weekends are pretty run-filled and so it is always nice to have an easy run on Monday to ease back into the next week of workouts.

Tuesday: 7 miles (8:30 pace)
Tuesday: Rest Day

It was back to the whole “we were supposed to do track on Tuesday but got rained out” thing again this week. I begrudgingly got up and did a few miles on the treadmill just in case the RW group run got rained out that evening (which it did). Daniel usually bikes on Tuesday evening, but TS Cindy put a damper on things this week and he took an impromptu rest day.

This is what the radar looked like for 95% of the week …

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Wednesday: 2 mi. WU, 16 X 200 (39, 42, 40, 40, 39, 39, 39, 40, 39, 40, 39, 38, 39, 40, 40, 39), 2 mi. CD
Wednesday: 1 mi. WU, 1200 (4:25), 800 (2:47), 400 (1:17), 400 (1:19), 800 (2:48), 1200 (4:20), 1 mi. CD

We were determined to get our track workout in Wednesday morning regardless of what the weather was doing. Thankfully, we had a tiny break from the heavy rain around 5 a.m. and Daniel and I were able to sneak over to the track and get most of our workout in before the bottom dropped out again. I did 200s and he did a ladder workout.

I felt like I was in uncharted territory with the paces for 200s. My workout was supposed to start at 41-42 seconds and drop down to the 38 – 39 range at the end. Turns out, I have a really hard time distinguishing between what a 41 – 42 second 200 should feel like vs. a 38 – 39 second 200. It all just felt like “run as fast as you possibly can pace.” I haven’t done a lot of speedwork at less than 5K pace, so this was quite a shock to the system! My paces were fairly consistent, but I was gassed after 16 repeats (I was supposed to do 20).

Daniel’s workout went really well! His goal paces per lap were 88 seconds for the 1200s (close to 5K pace), 84 seconds for the 800s and 80 seconds for the 400s. He pretty much nailed it. He was very pleased with his workout and I am giving us each an extra 10 hard-core points for getting out there and getting this done on a soggy track in the middle of a tropical storm.

Thursday: 8 miles (8:13 pace)
Thursday: 5 miles (8:19 pace)

It was back to easy running Thursday morning to recover from #workoutWednesday.

Friday: 2 mi. WU, 4 mile tempo (6:27 pace), 2 mi. CD
Friday: 5 miles (8:20 pace)

I had a tempo run on tap Friday morning. I took this one to the treadmill, which was a nice change of pace. It’s been a while since I have done a tempo workout on the treadmill (I’ve gotten much better about doing my workouts outside these days). If you are going to do a workout on the TM, a tempo is a good one to do (in my opinion). You are working hard, but not so hard that you feel like you might fly off of the machine.

Saturday: 12 miles (8:07 pace)
Saturday: 12 miles (8:04 pace)

Daniel and I got in a long (ish) run Saturday morning. We waited until about 8:30 a.m. to run, which is much later than usual. It rained on us a little bit for the first few miles and then the rain dried out and it got HOT.

Sunday: 10 miles (8:43 pace)
Sunday: Rest Day

We weren’t able to run until Sunday afternoon and Daniel decided to take a day off. I decided to brave the heat and ran at 1:30 p.m. (i.e., TOASTY). I had to take a few walk breaks (walk of shame … whatever you want to call it), but I got it done. It’s not always pretty, but as long as you consistently put in the work day in and day out, the results will come.


I hope y’all have a great week!

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for man.
Colossians 3:23

Week #4: SOS + Ironman 70.3 Augusta

Happy Monday!


Our “summer of speed” and Daniel’s Ironman 70.3 Augusta training is plugging right on along. I’m fairly organized at this point in the week (like 5 minutes into things … haha), so we are going to go with a combined recap of our workouts from last week. I’m in pink and Daniel is in navy (so clever … I know :)).

Monday: 5 miles (8:27 pace)
Monday: 5 miles (8:25 pace)

We started the week off with an easy loop Monday morning (Daniel’s watch likes to beat my watch).

Tuesday: 2 mi. WU, 5 X 1200 (4:38, 4:36, 4:32, 4:33, 4:37), 2 mi. CD
Tuesday: 1 mi. WU, 16 X 200 (42, 42, 41, 40, 42, 41, 40, 41, 41, 42, 41, 42, 41, 42, 41, 34), 1 mi. CD

We were *finally* able to get a track workout in on Tuesday this week. Jill, Rebecca and I did some 1200s. I was a little surprised to see a 1200 meter repeat workout on the schedule. I haven’t done 1200s in a really long time (maybe 5 years or more ago). I think I would’ve been slightly dreading this workout had it not been for the mile and a half repeats that I did last week on the track. I did 6 laps around the track for the mile and a half repeats and a 1200 is *only* 3 laps. Granted it is 3 laps that are run at a decent clip faster than the mile and a half repeats … but still. I was trying to focus on the positive.

The 1200s were supposed to be run at close to 5K pace. My times were 4:38, 4:36, 4:32, 4:33, 4:37 (the paces ranged from just over 6:00 to close to 6:10). It was hot and humid during this workout (I know that’s pretty much a given at this point, but for some reason it still makes me feel better to go ahead and type it out) and I was really working to hold the pace during the last 1200. I was happy with the workout and definitely felt like effort-wise, I was right where I was supposed to be. I didn’t know it at the time, but those paces ended up being spot on with my 5K race pace on Saturday.

They guys went a classic race-week staple workout … 200 meter repeats. They did 16 X 200 and crushed it. They were really moving on that last one! Holy smokes.

Wednesday: 8 miles (8:27 pace)
Wednesday: 21 mile bike (20.2 mph)

Wednesday morning I ran some easy miles with Young Daniel and Cody while Daniel biked. Everyone’s legs were definitely feeling the workout from the day before.

Thursday AM: 8 miles (8:29 pace) + 4 miles (9:08 pace)
Thursday: BRICK! 40 minutes of biking on the trainer + 5 miles (8:17 pace)

It was souper humid (translates loosely to: feels like running through a bowl of soup) Thursday morning. Young Daniel and I did 3 miles while Daniel biked and then we met back at the house and all ran 5 miles together. Daniel had a work function to go to Thursday evening, so I decided to do a few treadmill miles while he was gone. Two of my favorite podcasters were on a show together! I geeked out over it.

Friday: 5 miles (8:23 pace)
Friday: Rest Day

I ran 5 miles with Young Daniel Friday morning. We saw a tortoise and a hare (or you know … a turtle and a rabbit) right beside each other during the last mile of the run. It was almost as if they were racing or something. That’s gotta be some sort of sign right?!


Saturday: Hot Trot 5K (19:01)
Saturday: Hot Trok 5K (18:43)

We both did Hot Trot Saturday morning!


You can read all about my race in the recap above. Daniel’s splits were 6:02, 5:58, 6:00, 0:43 for a time of 18:43. It seems like the biking he has been doing has helped him aerobically. He’s running great!

Sunday: 13 miles (8:46 pace) + 5 miles (7:55 pace)
Sunday: BRICK! 50 mile bike (19.4 mph) + 5 mile run (7:52 pace)

Our group met for our weekly long run and coffee conversations Sunday morning this week, as pretty much everyone raced on Saturday. We survived a solid, soggy 13 miles. Daniel left the house super early and rode 50 miles on his bike and met us at Warehouse afterwards. His goal in his race is to average above 18.6 mph for the bike portion, so he definitely did that today. Boom! He wanted to do a brick workout and he somehow convinced me to join him for a 5 mile loop once we got home (hashtag bad decisions).

That’s it for now. I hope you all have a wonderful day and a great week ahead!


Race Recap: Hot Trot 5K

Hello, hello!

Coming at you today with a recap of the LuLu’s Hot Trot 5K!

This is one of my favorite races of the year! Yes. I have a few favorite races, but this one is definitely one of the best. I have done it 5 times now and I plan to keep doing it as long as I am able to. You need to do it too! As long as you manage the expectations about the fact that it will be unbelievably hot (it is mid-June in Alabama after all) and embrace it for what it is, then everything else about the race will be amazing!

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The race starts at 7:30 a.m. at LuLu’s in Gulf Shores, AL. We left the house around 5:45 a.m. in order to make it to LuLu’s close to 6:30 a.m. to get our packets and have time to warm up and do our typical pre-race stuff. We made it right on time and were able to easily find parking, get our packets and go to the bathroom (nice, indoor bathrooms at that … it’s definitely a nice plus when you don’t have to do the pre-race porta potty thing in my opinion).

We ran the course before the race as our warm up. The course is as flat as any course could possibly be. It is essentially an out and back course, but there is a little side loop that is added on the way back. My coach didn’t really give me a specific time goal for this race, but I knew that I wanted to be somewhere in the low 6:00 range. I also knew that the heat and humidity would make it tough, so I was going to be okay with whatever the day gave me.


Side note: I’m not sure what in the world is going on with my face in the above picture. Looks like I was preparing to ride the pain train! Haha. I was able to convince our friend Bowie into pacing me during the race. He was there to run, but not race and my race pace wasn’t all that difficult for him so that worked out really well!

We started out at 6:10 pace, which felt pretty comfortable. I had a girl to chase during the first mile and I ended up passing her right at the one mile mark. My watched clicked over the first mile in exactly 6:10 and I surged a little just to make sure that the pass was somewhat decisive (a move that I learned from Daniel). Just after the one mile mark we came to the turnaround point. As you approach the turnaround, you get to see how the race in unfolding in front of you. We had several friends racing and it was fun to be able to see and cheer for everyone as we passed.

After the turnaround I didn’t have anyone else right around me (other than Bowie who was doing a wonderful job of keeping me on track). My Daniel and Young Daniel were the two runners closest in front of me, so I just kept my focus on them. A dog tried to come out and run part of the course with us around a mile and half in, which was pretty funny! I think that dog was faster than anyone at the race by far. He trotted along with us for a minute or so until he found something more interesting to go do.

My split for the second mile was 6:11. I felt like I had maybe sped up a little bit during the second mile, but apparently I didn’t. Sad. Don’t get me wrong … I was pleased with the pace, but also just felt like I was working harder than I was during the first mile. Effort-wise, I know that my heart rate was definitely higher! Bowie helped me stay focused during the last mile. I probably would’ve been content to keep it right where I was or I might’ve even been a little more content to slow down a touch, but he wasn’t having it. He told me that “this is what I train for … this is why I run all of the miles … keep pushing and give it your all.” I was very appreciative for the extra motivation and his encouragement helped me to keep the voices in my head in check (you know … the ones that like to tell you it’s okay to slow down a little bit because we are getting really uncomfortable up in here).

We finished mile three in 6:00 flat and the last 0.1 was 0:39 for a total time of 19:01. Whew. I was hopeful that I could squeak in under 19:00, but I didn’t quite make it. I am very happy with my time though. This was the fastest that I have run at this race. Only by a few seconds, but I’ll definitely take it! We all ran the course again after the race to get in some cool down miles. With the warm up and cool down, the 5K turned into a 15K of total running. I like it.

Shout-out to the Warehouse Grinders who got it done yesterday!


Left to right: Young Daniel: 18:54, Kenny: 18:09, (me), My Daniel: 18:43, Steve: 18:29, Cody: 17:48, Brandon: 18:19 and Sasser: 19:58.

Also shout-out to my girls who run the world {Beyoncé reference}!


Left to right: Jill: 19:41 (2nd overall), Jessica: our cheerleader extraordinaire (and soon-to-be momma :)), (me) and Lizzie: 21:29 (4th overall).

It was such a fun race! The only sad thing was that this year there were no coffee mug awards. I always really look forward to my annual Hot Trot coffee mug (because it holds LOTS of coffee). This year everyone got a finishers medal and the age group winners got an additional medal. The medals are hand-made (similar to the First Light ones) and I definitely like them. The coffee mug was just a very unique award and I tend to prefer unique awards over medals (but that’s probably just me … and it’s definitely impossible to please everyone).

We finished off a fun morning off with an afternoon at the beach. It was a wonderful day!

Daniel’s Ironman 70.3 Augusta Training Log (Week #2 (of Blog Documentation))

Hi friends! Happy Monday!

Here is Daniel’s Ironman 70.3 Augusta training weekly recap. He has been training since the beginning of May (i.e., that’s when he started biking), but we just started “officially” documenting it here last week. He had a solid running base when he started, so adding in a few rides each week has really been the only difference so far. He has done one triathlon before (a sprint tri) and this will be his first half Ironman.

Monday: 5 mile run (7:56 pace)

Tuesday: 5 mile run (8:05 pace)

Wednesday: 1 mi. WU, 8 X 400 w/ 200 float, 1 mi. CD

This is Daniel’s favorite track workout! However, we just discovered this week that he has neglected to properly count the distance to make the workout a 5K instead of just 3 miles. I won’t say that we had a heated discussion about this at 5 a.m. Wednesday morning, but we definitely had a discussion (he also gave me permission to include this in the recap in case you were wondering :)). Haha.

He crushed me on the 200 splits (which I mentioned in my previous post). Here is the data from his workout:

400 splits were 1:28, 1:26, 1:26, 1:26, 1:27, 1:26, 1:26, 1:26
200 splits were 51, 53, 52, 49, 51, 50, 50, 45

The 400s are supposed to be run at close to 5K goal pace and the 200s are supposed to be run at about 1 minute over 5K goal pace. He finished with 18:00 for 3 miles. The workout is supposed to be a 5K, but we were still negotiating this by the time he finished up his run.

Thursday: 5 mile run (8:45 pace)

Thursday was supposed to be a brick day, but after Wednesday’s track workout, a few extra minutes of sleep won over getting up earlier than usual to bike.

Friday: Brick Workout! 19 mile bike (19.0 mph) + 3.5 mile run (7:35 pace)

Friday morning we had a cooler morning, which made for an enjoyable ride (per Daniel). He then met us at the track to get a few miles in with us as we finished up our workouts.

Saturday: 14 mile run (7:35 pace)

Saturday was the typical long run + breakfast combo. They kept the pace pretty consistent throughout the run and it got a little toasty towards the end.

Sunday: Brick Workout! 36 mile bike (19.9 mph) + 5 mile run (7:19 pace)

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Daniel met with a new group Sunday morning to ride (photo cred: Mary Trufant). He enjoyed the company! The group did close to 50 miles total. Daniel did 36 miles with them and got a run in afterwards to finish out the week with a strong brick workout.

His race is September 24th! So only 9,158,400 seconds, 152,640 minutes, 2544 hours, 106 days, 15 weeks or 3.5 months away!


SOS: Week #3

Week #3 of speed training is in the books. The sun came back from its hiatus towards the end of the week, which made things much more pleasant. Rainy weather makes me feel gloomy, so I’d definitely rather have sunny and hot over rain any day!

Monday AM: 5 miles (8:37 pace)

I started the week off with an easy treadmill recovery run.

Monday PM: 5 miles (8:01 pace)

Daniel was ready to do a loop Monday afternoon after work, so of course I decided to tag along.

Tuesday PM: 5 miles (8:21 pace)

The rainy saga continues … track got rained Tuesday morning again this week. We slept in and did a loop that evening. For whatever reason, I was majorly on the struggle bus for this run and even had to stop and walk for a little bit during the last mile. Eek!

Wednesday AM: 1 mi. WU, 8 X 400 w/ 200 float, 3 mi. CD

We woke up to more rain Wednesday morning, which was a major bummer. I had another workout planned for the week in addition to the 400s, so I couldn’t push the workout back another day without getting to the end of the week and having back to back to back hard runs (I used to be really, really bad about doing that to myself). Daniel and I ended up at the track by ourselves Wednesday morning. We get major hardcore points for doing a track workout in the rain!

The track was very soggy, which makes sense after 10+ days of rain. Argh. I wouldn’t say that either of us were thrilled to be out there in the beginning, but once we got into the workout were done, we were definitely happy! My workout was supposed to be a 2 mile warm up, 12 X 400 and a 2 mile cool down, but I modified that slightly in order to do the same workout that Daniel was doing. He and his buddies have done this same workout a few times and I hadn’t ever done it, so I kind of wanted to see what it was all about.

The workout is basically just 400 repeats w/ a 200 recovery except for that you don’t truly get a recovery. You are supposed to keep the pace for the 200s at close to 1 minute per mile over your 400 pace. As an example, my typical recovery between intervals would be close to 8:30 or 9:00 pace, but for this workout the “float” pace was close to 7:00 pace (which means you still have to push). It was very difficult to get into the mindset of continuing to push through the 200s, since I am so used to completing an interval and having a recovery period.

Daniel and I started the workout together, but he got ahead of me during the first 200 float (since my body was still like “what in the world are we doing “) and he steadily got farther ahead as the workout went along. The funny this is that our 400 splits were almost identical even though we didn’t run any of them exactly together except for the first one. He crushed me on the 200s though! Haha. My 400 splits were 1:28, 1:26, 1:28, 1:27, 1:27, 1:26, 1:26, 1:26. I finished with a 5K of 18:54 (give or take for Garmin accuracy issues when running on the track).

Wednesday PM: 4.5 miles (9:01 pace)

The rain FINALLY cleared out Wednesday afternoon (for good!) and Rebecca, Savannah and I were able to celebrate National Running Day with an easy run that evening.


Thursday AM: 7.5 miles (8:34 pace)

It felt amazing out Thursday morning! It was so nice that I found myself wishing I had a workout so that I could capitalize on the cooler weather. You know you’re a runner when you think of cool weather in terms of how much better your paces would be that day. But alas, I had to put an easy day in between my workouts and so Thursday morning was just a nice easy run with the Daniels.

Thursday PM: OTF Class (3.7 miles @ 7:15 avg.)

Thursday’s class was intense! It was “power day” at OTF, which is apparently one of their tougher classes (this was my first experience with it). I actually had intentions of taking it kind of easy, but there was a competition going on between all of the classes that day to see which class could earn the most splat points (i.e., minutes in the orange or red heart rate zone) and I just couldn’t let my class down. My competitive nature got the best of me and I pushed a little harder than I was planning, but oh well. I had fun and got a great workout in. Win, win!

Friday: 2 mi. WU, 4 X 1.5 mile (9:45, 9:41, 9:41, 9:41), 2 mi. CD

Friday morning it was time to tackle the second workout of the week. This one was a bit longer than anything I have done in several weeks, which was a tad intimidating. I decided to hit the track for this one (have I mentioned how much I am loving the track recently?!) and thankfully, I had some good company.

The goal range was 6:20 to 6:30 pace for the repeats and I stayed right within that range, so I’m very pleased with how that went. I didn’t realize it until I looked at my splits after the fact, but the last three repeats were all the exact same. I couldn’t do that again if I tried! My mile and half mile splits within those three are all slightly different, so it’s crazy that the sum was exactly 9:41 on all three. I really felt like I was fading on the last repeat, so it was great to see that I held it together. Definitely goes to show that sometimes our perception doesn’t line up with reality. Even if you feel like you are struggling late in a race, just keep pushing and you might surprise yourself!

Saturday: 7.5 miles (8:50 pace)

After Friday’s workout, I wanted to take it fairly easy on Saturday. Rebecca pushed Savannah in the stroller, which definitely helps to keep our pace honest, but I don’t know how much of an “easy” run it truly is when you are pushing a 30 (ish) pound toddler. I offered to push her up one of the hills and goodness gracious … that is tough! I don’t know how she does it. At one point the front wheel almost came off of the stroller, which was no bueno. The official diagnosis is that one of the thingys came loose from the other thingy. Amazingly enough, we managed to fix it ourselves, which was good because the guys left us in the dust long before this little mishap.

Sunday: 10 miles (8:04 pace)

Sunday was supposed to be long run day, but I decided to call it at 10. Physically I felt fine, but for whatever reason, I just didn’t feel like running any farther. I am more focused on my speed workouts than distance workouts at this point, so I had no qualms about cutting it short. The Hot Trot 5K is coming up next weekend and I want to be relatively fresh for the race. It is definitely one of my favorite races of the year!

Gotta run! I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

SOS: Week #2

Hello and Happy Monday!

Here’s a run down of the second week of the “summer of speed.” It was a rainy week on the Gulf Coast. I’m pretty sure it rained at least once each day. Several of our runs were delayed or otherwise rearranged due to the soggy weather.

Monday AM: 6 easy (9:00 pace)

Monday I got the chance to participate in the Memorial Day Flag Relay. In honor of the brave men and women who gave their lives for our country and its citizens, runners from across the area teammed up to carry the American Flag and the Armed Forces Flag from downtown Mobile, AL to the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, FL.


We woke up to a monsoon Monday morning. Rebecca and I had planned to do a few miles that morning before the relay, but we had to take it to the treadmills to ride out the storms. I ran 4 miles beforehand and then Rebecca, Savannah and I had a 2 mile stretch of the relay that ran down Hwy 59 in Robertsdale. The sun came out just in time for us to run!


Monday PM: 5 easy w/ Daniel (8:08 pace)

Daniel had to work Monday and he wanted to do a loop when he got home. I was happy to tag along. Keep reading for more on Daniel’s training (which is way more interesting than mine these days) …

Tuesday: RW Group Run (9:10 pace)

I was originally supposed to do a track workout Tuesday morning, but there was more rain! I had a race Saturday, but I figured I could get away with pushing the workout back a day and still have plenty of time to recover for the race. It seems like it has been so long since we have made it to a group run on Tuesday evening. I was more than ready to get out and run Tuesday evening and so were a lot of other people too it seems, because there was a really big group at the store. Everyone must’ve been going stir crazy from all the rain.

Wednesday: 4 easy (8:25 pace)

Wednesday morning we woke up to … you guessed it! More rain. Ugh. I couldn’t bear the thought of doing 800 meter repeats on the treadmill and so I slept in (again) and told myself that it was no big deal, I would just do my track workout Wednesday evening after work. Yeah. Nope! Not happening. I have a really difficult time making myself do workouts in the evenings. I definitely don’t mind doing an easy run in the evening every now and then, but a track workout is a whole different can of worms.

Daniel is the total opposite and would rather do a workout in the evening than in the morning. He claims that his legs are warmer in the evening, but I just think there is something wrong with him. Since he decided to go ahead and do his workout Wedneday evening, I tried to be a super supportive spouse and decided to go over to the track to watch him do his workout while I ran easy, listened to a podcast and cheered for him each time he blew by.

Thursday: 2 mi. WU, 6 X 800 (3:01, 2:58, 2:54, 2:53, 2:54, 2:54), 2 mi. CD

I finally got my speedwork in Thursday morning. The weather was still a tad iffy, but thankfully the rain held off long enough for us to get our workout in. Sasser and I did 6 X 800. My workout was supposed to be 8 X 800, but was also supposed to be done on Tuesday (and then Wednesday). By the time we got to Thursday, the 5K was just one day away and I decided to shorten the workout to 6 X 800.

My goal range for the 800s was 2:50 to 2:55. It took me two repeats to settle into the pace, but eventually I got there and the last 4 were all right within the range. I had to work pretty hard to hit those paces, but I was definitely pleased with my effort overall.

Friday: 8 easy w/ Rebecca (7:57 pace)

Rebecca and I got in a nice 8 miler Friday morning. She is finally out of school for the summer! Woo hoo. 8 miles has been our go-to running distance over the years and this run just felt just like old times. It was definitely just what I needed Friday morning!

Saturday: Grandman Tri Relay

I wrote a whole post about this one, so check it out if you haven’t!

Sunday: 9.7 easy w/ Rebecca & Jill (8:07 pace)

I ended the week with a medium-long run with Rebecca and Jill. Jessica met us and got her walk on! My legs were definitely feeling fatigued from the 5K (the hills plus the lack of a proper cool down really didn’t do me any favors). We still had a good run with even better coffee + conversation time afterwards!

That’s it for my week. I didn’t do anything too exciting workout wise. No classes or anything, just running. Like I mentioned earlier, Daniel’s training is definitely more interesting than mine these days since he is training for a half ironman (1.2 mile swim + 56 mile bike + 13.1 mile run)! I tried to get him to write a weekly recap, but he wasn’t really feeling that so I am going to do a little mini recap for him. If I was training for my first half Ironman, I would have no clue where to start and I would definitely enjoy reading about someone else’s training.

Monday: 5 mile run (8:08 pace)

He ran with me (see above). Haha.

Tuesday: 25 mile bike (averaged 21.7 mph)

He’s been riding with the Pro Cycle group on Tuesday evenings. It is what they call a “drop ride,” where each rider basically tries to leave the other riders in the dust (that’s my interpretation at least). I think this was a bit intimidating at first, but Daniel seems to have settled right in and is enjoying the group rides.

Wednesday: 1 mi. WU, 6 X 800 (2:52, 2:51, 2:52, 2:53, 2:53, 2:50), 1 mi. CD

I seriously don’t understand how he found the motivation to do this workout after work Wednesday evening. He crushed it!

Thursday: Brick workout! 15 mile bike (19.1 mph) + 2 mile run (6:28 pace)

I think this was his first official “brick” workout of the training cycle, but I might be wrong about that. I took his running shoes to the track with me Thursday morning and he stopped by the track to run a few miles after his ride. I had no clue that he was going to run so fast! I thought it was just going to be an easy run off of the bike, but I was definitely mistaken. Sasser and I were still in the middle of our 800s when Daniel got back from his ride and he started FLYING around the track! We were impressed.

Friday: [Much Deserved] Rest Day

Saturday: 13.1 mile run (7:29 pace)

The guys always like to push the pace a little bit on Saturday morning. I think it is physically impossible for a group of guys to run together and not push the pace.

Sunday: 52 mile bike (averaged 18.9 mph)


Whew. I think I wore myself out just by typing all of this up. I need more coffee stat! I hope you have a wonderful week!

Race Recap: Grandman Tri Relay

Hey friends! I’ve got a fun race recap to share today!

Saturday morning I did the Grandman Triathlon Relay in Fairhope as part of a two-woman team. My teammate, Kristan, swam and biked and all I had to do was run (which definitely worked out well because that’s all I am good for anyway). Kristan is an amazing triathlete! She is currently on mend from a partially torn hamstring (ouch!) and she just needed someone to do the run for her. She asked me if I would be interested in competing with her … uh yeah! Of course I was. I got to be an honorary member of her tri team, the Zarzaur Law Triathlon Team (aka “The Gavels”), for the day and we had a blast!


Let me just start by saying, holy moses … there is A LOT of planning and logistics that goes into triathloning … it definitely makes running seem very simple. You show up with your shoes and maybe a watch (but that’s not really necessary at all) and you just run. Triathlons are much different!

The race started at 7 a.m. at the Fairhope Pier. Kristan told me that I probably needed to be there close to 6 to get “marked,” but that she would be there even earlier to set up her transitions. I woke up around 5, got myself ready, made some coffee and headed down to the race. Once I found a parking spot and walked down the hill (you know … the HUGE hill that I would have to run up during the race … that one), I was greeted by volunteers with sharpies who were eager to write our team number all over me. Seriously. Both arms, both legs and a calf. I’m sure there is some sort of secret to removing permanent marker from your body, but regular soap and water didn’t exactly cut it. Most of it washed away, but the remnants are definitely still visible a day later.

I will never forget the first and only other time I did this race (also part of a relay) was the year that Daniel and I were engaged. I had a dress fitting the next day (or maybe two days later (it doesn’t make sense that it would’ve been on a Sunday)) and I remember standing in this fancy dress shop in Birmingham, feeling like a silly goose for trying on my wedding dress with sharpie all over my arms. But I digress, sorry.

Once I got to the pier I found Kristan pretty easily and also met up with my friend Jill who was also doing the race as part of a relay team. We were able to warm up together and hang out during the swim and bike portions. It was definitely nice to have a fellow runner there to hang with!


Our teams were basically neck and neck the whole race. That’s the other thing about triathlons that is super confusing. You don’t really know exactly where you stand against the competition until the race is over. The swimmers all start at different times. This race had a staggered start with about 20 seconds in between each athlete. It seemed like it was close to an hour before everyone was in the water. Jill and I hung out on the pier, watched our swimmers take the plunge into the bay and then headed out to do our warm up.

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We planned to do a three mile warm up, but only really ended up getting in just over two miles because we were both so nervous that we might somehow miss our teammates coming back into the transition on their bikes. They biked 18 (ish) miles and it definitely didn’t take them very long to do that. Kristan averaged 22 mph on the bike. She was smoking!

The transition area is a little hectic with all of the bikers zooming in, racking their bikes, changing shoes, etc. and heading out to run. I had to wait in the transition area for Kristan to come in and I was mainly just trying to stay out of everyone else’s way and cheer for the other racers as they came through. Once she got there, she had to rack her bike, take the timing chip off and give it to me before I could take off.

You climb from 1 ft (we are talking literally at sea level here) to 80 ft in the first tenth of a mile into the run. I don’t know if that sounds bad or not, but just trust me … it is TOUGH!

Up the hill I went (clearly I am thrilled) …


I knew that the hill was going to be the biggest obstacle of my race and I told myself over and over (and over) again that I would NOT try to run up that thing too quickly. The plan was to take it easy up the hill and then start to push. Theoretically this sounds wonderful, but it is incredibly difficult not to get caught up in the heat of the moment during a race (and especially in a relay when you know your teammate just busted her hiney and is counting on you to do the same :)).

To make matters worse (or better), there are tons of spectators out on the hill cheering like crazy for you. Daniel and his buddies had run that morning and were standing at the top of the hill cheering. I got caught up in the moment and took off up the hill much faster than I planned to. Oops! Once you get up the hill the course flattens out a little bit, but there are still some gentle rollers to deal with. Somehow I had completely blocked all of the other smaller hills from my mind before the race.

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I came through the first mile in 6:15. I expected that mile to be a little slower, so I was definitely happy with the split. I was steadily catching people and picking people off throughout the run, which is usually pretty fun, but I honestly kind of felt bad passing people, knowing that they had to both swim and bike before they ran. On the other hand, I was fresh as a daisy and just out for a nice little 5K. I’ve got mad respect for you triathletes! I cannot even imagine having to run that course after swimming and biking. Y’all are all rockstars!

The first two miles of the course are an out and back, so as much as I’ve complained about the hill, it isn’t really all that bad because you do at least get to come back down. You can get a decent amount of momentum going down that thing and I kind of had to reign it in (for fear of getting completely out of control and busting my face). I came through the second mile in 6:10.

The last mile is a loop around the duck pond at the pier. I knew that I just had to keep pushing for one. more. mile. The last mile of a 5K can be really tough and yesterday was no exception. My legs and lungs were screaming at me and I was just so ready to be done! I came through the third mile in 6:15.

After the third mile split you have to do a little “off roading,” through some sand and grass before making your way onto the sidewalk and around to the finish line. Daniel was waiting down near the finish and got another picture of me. Again, I am not looking super thrilled …


I crossed the 5K in 19:29 (according to Strava), but the course was 3.2 miles, so my official time was 19:54. For 80 degrees, 90 percent humidity and a hilly course, I will definitely take it! I really think that is one of the toughest 5K courses around here.

I was planning to get in a two or three mile cool down after the race, but that definitely didn’t happen. I got in one mile, but that was it. I was over it. I was ready to just be hanging out, chatting with friends while we waited on the results. I also got to hang out with the most adorable golden retriever puppy ever (besides Brooks (obviously)). I may have tried to steal him from his owner and take him home with me, but Daniel wasn’t really as into it as I was (c’mon Daniel … pretty please … Brooksy NEEDS a little friend).

We waited on the results for a little while and we honestly had no clue how our team had done. We knew that we were pretty evenly matched with one of the other teams and that it could’ve gone either way as far as who came out on top (not that it even matters … we all had fun and THAT is what matters). There was definitely some [mostly] friendly competition going on though, so when we found out that we were the first place relay team (out of women, men and co-ed), we were pretty excited!

Lot of hugs …


Grandman is such a wonderful event. The location, the organization, the volunteers … everything is great. In all fairness, I don’t have much to compare it to, but I feel fairly certain that it is considered to be a top-notch event in the triathlon community. I’m not saying that I am ready to cross over into the multi-sport world by any means, but if I did, Grandman would definitely be the race that I’d want to do.

Participating in any event as part of a relay is always so much fun! As much as I enjoy individual sports like running and tennis, I can’t deny that there is just something about being part of a team that makes a sport feel more meaningful. I am so glad that Kristan asked me to do this event with her. It was a great experience and I really hope we get to do it again sometime!



Congrats to all of the athletes that competed yesterday! I am amazed by all of you!