Monday, July 23, 2007

New Toys

I walk into Sports Authority to buy goggles. Fifteen minutes later, I walk out with all this:


A heart rate monitor (upon the recommendation of my new personal trainer), a kickboard, and a pull buoy (keeps your legs afloat while you stroke with your arms, the opposite of a kickboard). Oh yes, and the goggles. They're great. I can get out of the pool and not have big circles around my eyes for the next few hours. Nice soft gaskets.

Tri training is coming along. In anticipation of the olympic distance triathlon in September, I've ramped up my training a bit. I have a personal trainer who I meet with three days a week at 5:30 am. In addition to this, I'm trying to run 3 times, bike 2 times, and swim 2 times each week. Oh yeah, and did I mention I have a job?

Last week, though, I think I really pushed it. It was my first full week of the new personal trainer, who is pretty tough. Then on Saturday, I rode my bike for 27 miles up some seriously killer hills (the most I've been doing is 45-minute to 1 hour spin classes) and on Sunday morning I swam a mile at Manhattan Beach, which is the longest open water swim that I've done yet. When Sunday afternoon came around and I was going to do an easy, 60-minute run, I ran out of steam a little more than halfway through and had to bail. Today I feel better, though.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Mexican Lasagna

I stole this idea from Mary Ruth, my brother's fiancee. Layer tortillas with various toppings -- refried beans, corn, mushrooms, salsa, peppers -- anything! Then bake in the oven. Serve with salsa. My brother was convinced that you can't do this without cheese to help everything stick together, but the refried beans are sufficient to make it work.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Tri'ing in LA

This town is awesome for triathletes!!!

I joined the LA Tri Club. At 1,450 members, they are one of the nation's largest triathlon clubs. They have multiple workouts every day for all levels of triathletes. It's also a great way to meet people. The day after I landed in LA, before I had even moved into my apartment, I swam in the ocean with the group. This morning I biked with the "beginner" cycling group. We traveled 27 miles, up two huge hills, one of which was five miles long. My legs are hurting big time!

People here are more active than anywhere else I've lived. At the beach, it's not just loafing people eating hot dogs. Groups of cyclists gather for rides along the ocean. Runners are everywhere. And under a tree, you might see someone doing push-ups or sit-ups. It's inspiring.

My next race is August 9, an evening Playa Del Run -- 1 kilometer swim and 5k run. After that is the Camp Pendleton sprint triathlon on August 11. Then, I'm doing my FIRST OLYMPIC DISTANCE TRI -- the Los Angeles Triathlon, on September 9.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Today in Cardiology

My blog got a mention in this month's issue of Today in Cardiology!

And here's tonight's dinner: A Garden- burger Breaded Chik'n patty on whole wheat bread, with lettuce and organic Vegenaise (that's an eggless mayonaise -- no cholesterol!)

Cardiologists, any words of wisdom for a just-graduated cardiologist?

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Aversion Therapy

I am terrified of open water swims. Especially those with lots of waves. Like the ocean. And, let's just say there's a lot of ocean here in Southern California.

Now, somehow swimming is my best of the three triathlon events (swim, bike, and run). But still I can't keep from panicking. This caused me some serious trouble in the Hyannis Sprint when my panic triggered an asthma attack.

What better way to get used to swimming in the ocean than by throwing myself into the midst of a race? One with big waves and lots of flailing limbs? There's a race series called the Playa Del Run which takes place on several Thursdays. You can swim the one kilometer and then run five kilometers, or you can just swim or just run. As I've never swam a kilometer in open water, let alone a raging ocean, I did only the swim portion.

I lined up with about 120 people to run into the ocean. Off we went with the gun. The waves were BIG!!! I saw people dive right in, under big waves -- which is what you're supposed to do. I still turn myself sideways and hope it doesn't knock me over. After some breaststroke, I start to ease into freestyle. But every time someone knocks me, I get annoyed, look up, and go back into breaststroke.

But, I didn't panic! I just let the crazy people go ahead, and once it was more clear, I eased back into freestyle. Once we were around the first buoy, people spread out, and there were few limbs to crash into. From what I'm told, it was a really choppy day, but I felt okay.

I came out of the water a little tired, though pleased with finishing that distance of a swim, and watched as people ran ahead of me to the transition area for the 5K run.

That day, I couldn't imagine doing a 5K after the swim. I do feel proud of myself that I could not only swim that distance in the open water, but that I was able to do it calmly. My time was okay too.

Next time, I'll swim AND run!!!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Unsettled

Technically, I'm homeless.

I moved out of my Boston apartment over a week ago. My belongings are in a Bekins truck driven by a guy named Buck from Buffalo.

It's been a relaxing week, seeing my parents in Michigan. Now I'm loafing around in California. I should be studying for my radiation and fluoroscopy license exam. But I'm not.

More posts and stuff when I am moved in.... and I can download pics from my camera.