Miles of Life ~ My life as a donut Kylie Donia

Archive for the ‘marky’ Category

too long

Friday, May 29th, 2009

It has been too long since I wrote, and I don’t know where to start. I don’t want to disappoint the 2 people who still read this, so I’ve gotta write something! And yes Gracie, you count in those two 😉

So I have a race tomorrow. My first duathlon! And my next one is in two weeks. Although I have done a number of reverse sprints, so running then biking is familiar, and with the whole tri thing the biking then running thing is familiar, so it will be fun to see how it is to do both in one race.

My taper has taken an interesting approach, called “kick Kylie’s butt into shape” and involves Marky sending me email containing phrases like zone 4 and zone 5 and “just do it!” and “well find a way”. So yesterday I ran in the morning, and then went for a swim. And I did a ride for lunch. And this morning I ran, biked (the long way) to the pool, and then swam. So yes, I have done a tri each of the last two days, and tomorrow I’m racing and I won’t! 🙂 I find that amusing. So yes, getting back into more structured training this month. It’s fun — but Gracie still gets to do my runs with me!

I’m feeling pretty good today — feel like my legs are strong and the biking is getting easier and swimming is feeling more natural. And I”m feeling lighter, and have lost a good bit of the weight I put on since the wedding. I like progress! And cute little mesas… which is all I think about during my intervals on my bike rides — gotta make cute little mesas in the power file!

I’ve been doing some riding lately with a new rider — one of my coworkers, who I actually met through Gracie and her puppyclass, joined the Redlands Spine and Sport run group on Wednesday nights. After chatting with me, and Mike, and Bjorn, she wanted to try a tri. And with the Tinman reverse sprint coming up, she is in! She was a cross country runner in college, and is definitely strong! It will be fun to see how she progresses in the sport!

Ok enough rambling for now, and I will try to be better about this whole updating thing!

Reason #533 I love my coach

Friday, October 31st, 2008

PCF. Patience, consistency, frequency. It’s about getting stronger one day at a time. It’s not about PRs in training and breaking yourself, but about building and progressing to a strong self (and with that PRs at the races). A movement closer to potential.

With that in mind, lets take a look at the swim today. A couple 50s FAST and pushing it, a 100 strong and relaxed as part of recovery, lather, rinse, repeat. Using the clock to make sure I get rest and can do well, and focusing on killing the 50s. Well on those 100s, strong but not feeling like really really crazy pushing it, I was hitting about 1:50.

Now take a step back. To June, actually, and a particular swim workout then. 15×100 on 1:55. I was worried about making it, and thrilled with my 1:51 times. Wait, really? Now that 1:50 is what I expect on strong hundreds. Nice.

Another step back. To January and another particular swim workout. There my cruise pace was 1:55-1:57, and I was thrilled to hit 1:50 on my fast FAST 100s. That was after I first started working with Marky, and he was just giving me tips and not a complete training plan.

The big picture. You know, the one that gets lost in trying to remember the workout scheduled, and working, and making lunch and cleaning the house? The one you ignore because that hard run just sounds good? The one that has you out of the water for months because hey it’s “off season” (whatever that is)? Yeah, that one. He doesn’t forget it — my workouts are moving me in the right direction.

PCF baby! Patience, consistency, frequency. Yeah, I get it. I’m in!

one of my favorite things

Thursday, October 23rd, 2008

October rocks this year. Every day is a run. And not just any run. A run with my husband and my puppy. It’s amazing 🙂 I love it!

Other things are also good — a couple classes just ended at school, and working on putting together a swim clinic for the tri club (with the help of MarkyV). I’ve been enjoying pool time, too. Now to just get pedaling more!

With all that, I’m tiiiiired! So bed time. I promise to try to post more often! Really!

Muskoka 70.3: Racing as a Donia

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

Muskoka 70.3 was the focus race for the year. Mike and I signed up long long ago — in fact, I don’t even remember signing up! It was before we even got engaged. Once we were engaged, we started planning a wedding. And the question of when to have it came up. We knew we didn’t want a bazillion year long engagement, and we like outdoors, so we settled on Fall 2008. We also knew we’d like to have the wedding in California, and then a reception in Canada for the members of Mike’s family that couldn’t make it to California. Well, with the race near his family and in September, it was the perfect timing for a reception — and we didn’t want a reception that far after the wedding, so our race date was set as the weekend before the race. Yes, you do have to sign up for some races farther in advance than you need to plan a wedding…

I was SOOOO GLAD I had Marky helping me get ready for this one. It was definitely a crazy summer. Yes, a wedding to plan. And school to attend, and work to do, and a new city to move to, and a dog to welcome to our family. Plus the training, and I am glad I didn’t have to also think through and plan out each workout! I just had to “get ’em done”. I knew the training and prep was all in place, and with his help, I got to the race confident and excited. Tapered as well, at least from workouts, thanks to a couple weeks of family and wedding and travel and more family 🙂

My goal on arrival was to PR, as it almost always is when I race (now that I train smart). I was thinking I would PR for sure, having had such better prep. My goal was about 7s: swim 37, bike 3:07, and run 1:57. But what I was forgetting was that the race was 4km long on the bike, and that they found the most “fun” (ie fun looking rollercoaster profile) they could for the bike, run, and yes, transitions! So after driving the course, I was no longer sure what would happen (esp on the bike, where I was really hoping to see one), and I was again glad to be racing with power. I knew where I should stay to have a successful race, and I just didn’t worry about it.

The race was taking up all the parking at the resort hosting it. So we had to park on the airstrip about 2 miles away. However, there were shuttles regularly, and we just ran it once just to get a quick leg-shaker in. It was something we were curious to see how it would go, but the race directors did a great job with it.

Registration was easy. The expo disappointing. I mean, it was my honeymoon race. You think I would by *something*. But they had decided to only make men’s jerseys, and the smallest size was a medium that was about right for Mike. When we asked if they had any women’s jerseys, we were told no, and that there were plenty of other clothes to buy and to go pick one. Umm sorry, but a cotton fitted baby shirt and a bike jersey are different. So my credit cards got a break there.

We headed to Mike’s brothers, got the bikes all set up (it’s easy when all you need to do is stick on a couple stickers!) and put our race stuff together. I was really excited about our outfits: bride and groom jerseys, bike shorts with “just married” on the butt, and for the run “just married” visors thanks to Tribabe (mine enhanced with a veil thanks to my sis and Holly). The next day we checked in our bikes and got in a practice swim. We were ready to go. Off to our wedding reception, and then bed time!

I woke up part way into the night to some rain. Ok, not some rain, but sheets and sheets of downpour. I love the sound of rain, so apologised to my bike for leaving it out in that and went back to sleep. Still not sure how the whole shuttles from parking would work on the big day, we arrived at the race nice and early. And it was still raining. Not pouring now, but more a constant drizzle. Other than the electrical tape on our wheelcovers the bikes were just fine. And the tape was just to stop the sound of it rattling on some bumps, so it was no big deal. We set up our bike shoes and helmets, deciding to place glasses nearby but forgo them if it was still that wet when climbing on. Our run shoes and socks were placed in a plastic bag beside the bike stuff. A bottle of carbopro/nuun (600 cal in the bottle) were placed on each bike, and the aerobottles filled with water. We were done, and just had to chat while waiting for the start.

We had met another couple while at the practice swim – he was in Mike’s AG, and she was in mine. They got married at Kona last year. So we chatted a bit with them, maybe too long — or we all forgot how long it took to walk to the swim start. So Mike and Scott got down to the water as their wave was ready to go. Leanne and I had a bit more of a wait, but soon we were also off!

I started to the outside on the swim as our wave had a number of the older and sometimes big and rough guy age groups in it. It was a smart choice, as I had a somewhat clear swim. There were always people right around me, but never much of a washing machine. I even caught a draft for a while, thinking about how Marky had told me to try it and given me some tips. Out of the water in 38:40 for a 2:00/100m pace (as I learned later – I don’t keep race time during races). Good enough for 11 in my AG, which I believe is my best AG swim placing ever.

The run to transition was not short, and not easy. It was a crazy-ass climb, and about 300m long!! An a fairly serious climb. So I took advantage of the wetsuit strippers and just cruised on up, already chanting my T1 mantra. Shoes, helmet, inhaler, blocks. Shoes, helmet, inhaler blocks. At my bike I dropped the wetsuit. The inhaler and blocks in my helmet were put into my pocket, helmet on my head, shoes on my feet and I was off. I had a great rack spot with an easy exit route! T1: 4:21.

(photo by Paul Graham)

I was looking forward to the bike. I knew I could do it, the hills weren’t scaring me, and I had my lovely yellow PowerTap friend smiling up at me. Until one of the many rough spots in the first couple miles, when the back of the craddle broke and my poor little PT CPU went flying. Shit shit shit… do I stop? Go? For a race this distance, and not having another watch to know timing and nutrition, not to mention the cost of that computer, I stopped and grabbed it. Back on the bike, with the PT now in my pocket, all I could think was how Marky said I should ride on feel 🙂 And then wondered if he somehow caused this.

I enjoyed the bike course. Up, down, around, up, up, down, up, over, around, up again… Never a dull moment, and beautiful scenery. But I was good, and only glanced at it out of the corner of my eyes. I felt good on the bike. It was still raining, and then it started raining more seriously. It was like needles on my arms and legs, but it wasn’t cold, so it was actually kind of comfortable. Every now and then I’d pull the PT CPU from my pocket and check what I was at — was about where I wanted in effort, nutrition was on, it was just a slow day for what I had hoped for. But that’s racing: it’s not a course you know, an a know scenario. It’s an experience.

There were a couple pairs of drafters, and people who would try to draft anyone near them and then get dropped. I just don’t get it — especially when you are at a place in the race where it’s not about podium spots. It just gave me a desire to ride clean: I made sure I dropped back before repassing (dudes who pass and then quit pedaling: it’s ok to ride your own race. Please ignore me and let me do the same to you). And to the guy who (I think) made a snarky comment about using a wheel cover: it worked just fine and I had fun, thanks for asking.

Then a big descent, and a guy passing me goes down, HARD. Starts sliding across the pavement, right in front of me, rollling into a ball. I somehow manage to barely miss him and keep on the edge of the road. Hoping Steve is ok (we’d been near each other for a while) I thanked my lucky stars my day wasn’t over and kept going. A right turn, and I was on a fairly rough stretch of road. It was almost like it wasn’t paved, but it was just bumpy and not really pot-holey. About on the home stretch now, and ready to get running. I like biking, but I was tired of being on a bike in the rain, and I love running. Plus the attention-whore in me was ready to have my visor and to run like a bride 😉 Off the bike: 3:26:34 (58.4mi, 16.98mph).

T2 mantra was going: Helmet and shoes off, watch, socks, shoes, visor. Helmet and shoes off, the watchband of my Garmin into my mouth, socks and shoes on, and visor in hand I ran on out. 1:51.

One thing I love is seeing Mike on the course. At IMKY last year, I happened to be right where the loop joins itself as he started his second loop and that was just amazing. We knew it would be close, so for the first mile I focused on not running to hard and watching for him. I never saw him, but we found out later we had just missed. And no matter how easy I made myself go, I was flying! 8:17 for the first mile! And I thought I was going nice and easy. I guess I was more excited than I thought to be off the bike 😉 Like the bike, and T1, there wasn’t much flat about the run.

But I was having fun. I ran with a girl from the area for a while, I ran with a girl in my age group for a bit. Through it all I felt I was going just maybe too hard, but I felt maybe just maybe I could hold it. Along the way many people told me they had seen the groom, and lots loved the outfit. Some asked if I was running to the alter, and I asked if they thought I should turn back. I focused on maintaining on uphills, and cadence on the down. I cursed and thanked Marky both ways as his words on turnover and effort and such rolled through my head. It was again pouring at times, and I just enjoyed the drops on me keeping me nice and cool.

(photo by Paul Graham)

I reached the final 5k and thought I had stepped into an Escher poster. It was on golf course paths, and there were runners everywhere, but you couldn’t tell where they were from or going or how much farther it was. I kept going, knowing it was only a 5k — I can hold this pace that far! I kept telling myself. So I did. I saw Mike, and he encouraged me, and I knew it was only about 3k left. Oh. My. God. Longest 3k ever. I thought my Garmin might have started going backwards. It was hilly and hard and I hurt and just had to keep going. Marky said to neg split, just barely. So I couldn’t slow now — that would be the same as admitting I had gone too hard on the bike! So I didn’t. And somehow my legs listened. And we just kept on going. And going. And finally it was the last turn. Nope, I was wrong. Maybe now? Nope… at least one more… But then it was the last uphill, and the finall slight down right into the finish chute! I relaxed, let the person by me go on and through, and had my own moment at the line. My watch read 1:56:00 (and sportstats matched it) but I’m going with 1:55:59 like the tracking had :). A half marathon PR. And on <a href=”″>that course</a>, and that weather. 4th fastest in my AG.

Total: 06:07:24, and 8/37 in my AG. I think that’s my best placing in a big race so far. Not the sub-6 I was hoping to repeat, but a tougher course and day, and I had a blast and felt I executed really really well. So I’m happy with it. But as Marky said of his last race, it is only going to get better. 🙂

A post-race massage, and then a hunt for warm food and to the awards. And then — a warm shower and REAL FOOD. Ahh it was good 🙂

I will let Mike post his race report in full later — but I’m so proud of him that I’m going to give some of it away! 4th out of the water in his AG, and then he led the AG race through the end of the bike! He ended up in 3rd in his age group and looked stylish doing it 😉

Reason #532 I love my coach

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

You know that little voice in your head? That isn’t negative, but doesn’t always push you as much as it could? That believes in you, but keeps you a bit safe from that edge of failure?

Well, sometimes it has to shut up. Marky recently had me doing 15×100 on 2 min. That is good for me — I had often done on 2:05 or occasionally on 2 min. But never for that many repeats. But I trust him (a requirement for success with a coach) and so I didn’t mention any fear, climbed in the pool, and got it done.

Well this time it was 15×100 on 1:55. I saw that and part of me doubted. But Marky said it, so I got in the pool and that was the goal. So what did i do? Well, came in on 1:47-1:51 for all of them and hit each one. Because that faith in me helped me try pushing that envelop, and it was something I could do. And it felt DAMN GOOD.

*edit 12/16/08* for some reason this post is getting a zillion spam comments so I have had to close comments on it

Marky said….

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

… try to find some hills (for my long run this week). So I said

Happy? I am 🙂

definitely a memoriable memorial weekend

Tuesday, May 27th, 2008

I took full advantage of the 3 day weekend — the first one I’ve had since classes started in January.

Saturday Mike, the mountain bikes and I all climbed our way up the same basic route we did back in December. It was still beautiful and fun. We went a bit farther this time, and made it all the way to the summit of the fire road. And again froze our asses off on the way down. It took forever in warm water in the shower to get my toenails not blue. And I might never listen to Mike about when to bring my cold-weather gloves again. But about 22 miles and 6000 ft of climbing kicked off the weekend right.

Sunday started with a pretty relaxed 30 mile loop on bike paths, basically flat (just under 1000ft of climbing). Then some shopping for a dress for one of my sister’s wedding in a couple weeks. A fun dinner, and then a nice evening 4.5 mi run.

Monday no alarm clocks were allowed. And we relaxed in the morning. But got out the door barely before noon for a great climby loop chasing Mike or sometimes riding with him — 71 miles and a bit under 10,000ft of climbing. Knowing it was going to be a long day of climbing, I just spun up pretty much everything, relaxing and enjoying the gorgeous views from the ridge road and seeing down the valleys. I loved the miles and miles with no cars, since about 20 of the miles each way were on roads that are currently closed to cars (ok currently closed — but lots of bikers still play up there). And the french dip sandwich at the turn around, complete with a fire to dry off and thaw a bit from that last cloud, also rocked. Oh yeah, and on the final stretch, I got a bit playful and I think Mike got tired of me finding sprint points 😉 I just knew I could make it home from there!

And thanks to Marky, a nice little run followed the ride. Just 20 minutes, 2.2 miles, but there weren’t really any completely flat parts.

So I earned my spaghetti! 🙂

Oh and the “song” stuck in my head lately? “It’s too cold for holes in my arse… it’s too cold for holes!!” (inspired by a pair of bike shorts that were torn on a fence).


Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

So Marky told me to zip it about the rain. But it didn’t end there. It poured and then was nice and sunny and warm at lunch and then pooooured this evening. With lightning and thunder! So I ran to the car to leave, of course during one of the strongest downpours of the day, and it wouldn’t unlock. And so I used the key. And it opened and I climbed in. Even the door unlock wouldn’t open the other locks, and I tried to turn on the car. No luck. Well shit. Looks like I left the lights on all day. I blame it on the rain. If it wasn’t raining I wouldn’t have gotten out of the car through the back seat in the morning, and the car would have beeped at me and I would have turned the lights off (I was hunting for my umbrella and crawled through to the back…).

So thanks to the guy in the common area at work who opened the door for me since my badge was in the car, and then had jumper cables and helped me in the rain. Wooo for helpful people!

And then I heard that we had a couple tornados today! Yes, in Southern CA! Craziness! So there, Marky — it was crazy here, too.

But it did mean the pool was closed, so no swim this evening. Just a crazy rainy drive home.

learning the Marky Way

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

More focus this year. Not on just doing, but on improving. On building speed, so that instead of having a long run I have a strong long run. Sometimes it hurts. As I started my run this morning, I really thought just stopping and stretching for the hour would feel so much better. But while visions of coachy-pants danced in my head I kept going. And of course the warm up loosened up my legs, and things fell into place.

After the ultra to kick of the year, it feels odd to have my “long run” day be 8 miles. But the focus this year is on shorter races, so even the long run is shorter, and at a better pace. Today I threw in some intervals, doing a mile hard, 1/2 mile easy, and repeating that 4 times. Then (because Mike was about to catch me and because a certain hill and I fight over who gets to make me hurt more) I added a HARD 1/4 mile on a bit of an uphill to finish off the mainset.

And about that spinny bike ride I did last night? Well it felt awesome — my focus was on a higher cadence to let the legs spin a bit more, but even with keeping the highest cadence I have in a while, the winds made for a bit harder of a ride than I had pictured. Oh and I’m bad at the high cadence game — you’d think that means I’d go into easier gears even for slight hills, but often for me it really means I just push a bazilliondy watts up the hills to keep the cadence up. I can be soooo lazy about shifting.

So my legs are a bit sore, and I can feel it walking today. Man I love that feeling. I wasn’t really getting it the same with the ultra format of training. And it means time to see if my massage girl Brianne has time for me on Friday! Because only this kind of leg feeling makes a massage reward even sweeter.

guess it is time to move

Tuesday, May 6th, 2008

With the rides I do all the time, I love that my Trifuel training log lets me compare my times over each course. I often have goal times for “someday”. Recently, my 20.5 mile mostly flat ride had a goal of 1:10, and my rolly 30.5 mile route had a goal of 2:00.

Well Saturday I climbed on my R3 and headed out on the 20.5 mile course. Nothing too exciting at first, but I was feeling pretty good so starting going a bit harder. I returned home in 1:09:29. That’s 4:22 faster than ever before, and 8:15 faster than my average. Wooo! I’ll take it.

Today I went out on my 30.5 mile route, feeling a bit stiff. My legs were not warming up too well, and seeing my power numbers in the first interval put me in a “get it done” frame of mind (not a “grab that PR” one). But I figured I’d still sticking to my coach’s prescribed 5 min on, 3 min off intervals. At the turn around, I though I might be a couple minutes ahead of whenever I’ve done it before, but I wrote it off to remembering the time wrong, and just kept doing. About 7 miles from the end I could tell another PR was coming, and it was good motivation to hold where I was through the set after the intervals were done. Got home… in 1:53:13!! Yup, a good 7:58 faster than ever before, and 11:16 faster than my average!

I’m pleased, and gave the legs healthy food and the rest of the day off. Time to move and find new routes to set goals for… or to just up those. Did I hear 1:05 and 1:50? 🙂