Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Pure Endurance 1st Annual Training Camp

Just a little more than three weeks since I did the Blue Lake Triathlon.

And yes, I am still smiling about how that went!  Twelve minutes!!  😀

A few weeks ago was the last week of school so there was lots to do.  End of the year projects, final tests, Spartan Olympics (think giant field day!) and the last day of school.

Before I talk about training camp I want to brag on my students.

My homeroom class is who I hang out with for the Spartan Olympics.  Last year my homeroom joined up with the basic skills class and we had the best time.  It was so fun that I decided that I would make it a yearly tradition.  The basic skills class is students with disabilities of varying degrees that make it difficult for them to be in the regular classroom.  Some participate in a class here and there but for the most part they stay in their classroom with their teacher and amazing teaching assistants.

I told my class of 6th graders that our goal for the day was to make sure those kids had the best day EVER.

Mission accomplished!!!!

In every event we participated in my kiddos made sure that our new teammates were involved, cheered for, supported and loved on.  It was a day full of laughter and cheering!  I was so proud of my students and how they worked with these students that are so different from themselves and really, not so very different at all.  I loved seeing the students from the basic skills class have the biggest smiles, give high fives and love on their new friends.

What an amazing way to teach young people empathy.  The teacher for the basic skills class and I talked after school and have decided that we should do some activities together throughout the school year so that we really feel like one team by the time Spartan Olympics come around.  I'm very excited about making that happen and giving my students an opportunity to see how amazing and strong these young people are.

The last day of school was full of goodbyes and hugs.  There were students that I was pretty sure hated me that gave me huge hugs and said I was their favorite teacher!  What?!!  lol  Evidently I do a few things right!

Because we were heading to Sunriver for our First Annual Pure Endurance Training Camp right after work on Friday I had to have all my stuff packed on Thursday night.  Joe came home from work and took me to work.  That way he could load up the car and then pick me up after work and we could head straight for Sunriver.  After a long day with our Spartan Olympics and then getting everything ready for our trip I was pretty much wiped out by the time I got to bed.

Joe was waiting for me after school and we started our drive to Sunriver.  I always enjoy road trips with my husband.  We talk about all kinds of things, listen to music and I just love the time to be together.  We drove the Olympic Tri route for the Pacific Crest event because the plan was to do that for part of our training camp the next day.  I always do better if I have an idea of what's coming.  It looked doable, difficult but doable.  Maybe.  lol

The weather wasn't what we were hoping for.  Central Oregon weather can change on a dime.  It had been in the upper 70's all week before training camp and suddenly the weekend called for cold, wet and rainy.  Oh well.  You never know what you are going to get for weather conditions on race day so might as well suck it up and practice.

The house we stayed in was awesome!  And big!  Which was good since there was eight of the Pure Endurance athletes there for the training weekend, plus our coach.

The original plan was to get up Saturday morning and head for Lake Wickiup for an open water swim. After the swim we would divide into two groups.  One group was going to do the Pacific Crest Half Ironman distance bike course and the other group would do the Olympic distance.

We took two cars, Jon's truck and our Yukon.  Our car was filled to the max!  Which was fun, it's one of the reasons we still like having such a big rig.

On the way to the lake there was an interesting weather development.

It started to snow.

It started to snow and to stick!  What the heck?
Snow in June!
Luckily we have a coach who puts his athletes safety first.  He changed the plan.  The new plan was still to do our swim but then to head back to the house and do a ride in the afternoon from Sunriver once the weather had (hopefully) warmed up a bit.

Lucky for the coach he has a group of athletes that were willing to be flexible.

So we got into our wetsuits.  While it was snowing.  The thought that I must be a little crazy crossed my mind several times.  The comforting part was that I wasn't the only one that was crazy so it wasn't all bad.

It wasn't too long and we were in the lake and swimming.  The water was 57 degrees.  This was much warmer than our group swim up at Foster Lake in April and it was definitely warmer than the air temperature.  It was also just enough warmer that it didn't make my face hurt when I put it in the water.  Cold but bearable, especially once we got moving.
This is when we were done.  Not sure if we are smiling because we kicked butt or because we are done!
I spent the majority of the swim trying to keep up with Melissa!  She is so stinking fast!  I figured if it was a training weekend then I was going to push things a little and just see how I did.  It was hard work keeping up with Melissa but she never got to far ahead of me.  Every once in a while I would see Jon come cruising along side me in his kayak to check on how we were doing.

Next challenge.  Changing out of our wetsuits and getting warm dry clothes on.  It's a process getting a wetsuit off in decent conditions.  Trying to do it and get dried off and into warm clothes without getting everything wet while in a parking lot that it has snowed, hailed and rained on during the morning isn't easy.  But there was an actual bathroom at the park and also a shed for cleaning fish that no one was using so many of use used those to change.  It was so nice to get warm clothes on!  I was also glad that we were going to be waiting a bit to go for a bike ride.

We made it back to the house and had an early lunch.  I was able to get a tiny nap of about 25 minutes before it was time to start getting ready for our afternoon bike ride.  I didn't really sleep but it was nice to just lay down and close my eyes for a while.  The last week of school takes a lot of energy and then going straight to a training camp was already bringing me to the edge of what I could handle.

We gathered up all our warm clothes and got bundled up for our ride.  It was so much fun starting out together.  It took a while to make our way out of Sunriver on the bike paths but eventually we made it.  Joe, Ron, Mike and James all took off for a longer, harder ride.  Melissa, Marcus, Kathy, Jon and I did a flat long ride.

My goal for the day was to once again keep up with Melissa.  The woman is seriously speedy!  I know she has been dealing with a lot of health issues that have kept her from competing.  But also know that the work she has been putting in, in spite of not being able to race has kept her fitter than she gives herself credit for.
The Booth Bunch-Ready to ride!!
Cruising through Sunriver.  There was some blue sky once in a while.  
The weather turned out to not be terrible during the ride.  It didn't rain on us, the wind wasn't blowing hard and with all the layers we were wearing we didn't get cold.

I kept up pretty well with Marcus and Melissa the entire time.  Jon and Kathy continued on for a bit longer ride while Marcus, Melissa and I headed back to the house.  We had some adventures navigating our way through Sunriver.  Those bike paths can be confusing.  😆  Eventually we made it!  It was so nice to take a hot shower and get into comfy clothes.
I have some pretty great teammates and friends!!
Once everyone was back to the house and cleaned up we had dinner.  Our coach had brought everything for our lunches and dinners. It was so good!  He definitely took good care of us all weekend long!

After dinner he had a presentation for us about how to use our bike skills better so that we don't burn all of our matches at the beginning of a ride.  (I have thoughts on this subject for another blog.)  😉

It was cool to be able to hear what Jon had to share, how it applied to all of us even with the wide variety of skill levels and to hear what other people had to say or what questions they asked.

Sunday morning I had an easy bike ride to do but then it was going to be followed by a 10k run.  I was a little worried about this because I was already pretty tired.

But that's what training camp is for, right?  Pushing you hard.  Making you tired.  Working on tired legs.  Mentally getting stronger.

One big bonus was that Joe had an easy ride to do as well so we went on ride together.  That doesn't happen very often.  Usually he has his thing he has to accomplish and I have mine.  I can't keep up with him anyway so most of the time we don't ride together.  So this was a big treat for me.

We ended up riding all the way around Sunriver.  My favorite part was along the Deschutes River.  We saw a deer across the river and then startled a Bald Eagle out of a tree.  It was so cool to see the massive wings as he headed across the water!!

Most of all I loved hanging out with my guy doing something active.  This was probably the biggest motivation for me to get off the couch in the first place and work at becoming an active person.  Still gets me out the door a lot of days where I'm not feeling it.  I want to be able to hang out with my guy doing something active or supporting each other during activities.

No rain again and even a little bit of blue sky.
We got back to the house and Joe took off pretty quick for his run.  It took me a little longer to get situated.  I wasn't too sure how a 10k was going to go on already tired legs and I also knew my energy levels were reaching the beyond empty levels.  At one point Jon did give me the option of not going quite as far but I was determined because the trail we were running on had a waterfall at the end.  I told Jon if I was going for a run I wasn't going to stop short of the waterfall and turn around.

The goal for the run was to run ten minutes and walk two minutes.  I did pretty good all the way out to the waterfall.  Wasn't going terrible fast but it was decent all things considered.  Glad I stuck it out and made it to the waterfall.  It was beautiful!

I was even able to run all the way back up the hill on the path I had gone down to get my pictures of the waterfall.

On the way back with about 1.5 miles to go I started to really struggle.  I just ran out of steam.  I tried to push through it and be mentally tough but once I got off the trail and back onto the path  in Sunriver I walked the rest of the way back to the house.

I was done.

It has been a long time since I have had a tired episode like this.  Which was a good reminder that I do a much better job of managing my energy then I used to.

Originally I had planned on taking a solid nap on Saturday after the swim and bike ride.  That would help me catch up a bit from the week and the morning activities.  But with the weather and the change in the schedule I didn't really get a nap.

By the time I got to the end of my run, after a long exhausting week of teaching and two days of solid hard workouts I ran out of steam.  The   hard part is trying to do what I still need to do without becoming a weepy hot mess in front of a bunch of people.

It's hard to explain what it's like.

I didn't feel good.  It's like suddenly I am sick.  I know I should eat but nothing sounds good.  I get really quiet, mostly because I'm just trying to rest and talking and interacting with people takes a lot more energy then you would think.  I start thinking about whatever I might have to do later in the day and worrying about how I'm going to manage it.  In this case I was supposed to drive home because I had to be at work the next day.  The stress of knowing there is a 2.5 hour car ride ahead of me and that I will be alone adds to the not feeling good.

I know it's bad when people are asking me if I'm okay because I'm being so quiet.

Jon had a debrief while everyone was eating lunch to go over what went well for the training weekend and what could be better next time.  I didn't even have the energy to go sit with everyone else.  I just sat in my comfy chair and listened.

I decided to pack up my stuff and then take a shower.  After the shower I was going to take a nap and then I would see how I felt when I woke up.

I took a three hour nap.  And I mean a solid nap.  I was OUT!  Pretty sure I was drooling on the pillow!  It was wonderful!

That put a big dent in my tiredness.

The second thing that happens is that because I didn't feel good, and I didn't eat after a couple hours of exercise and then I took a three hour nap was that my blood sugar got really low.  Not scary low for most people but for me it definitely is too low.  I've learned that every person who checks their blood sugar has to figure out what is normal for them and when they need to start doing something to fix it.  The chart I was shown says that 80-120 is normal.  I know that when I get into the low 80's I can already tell that I'm off.  If I'm in the 75-80 range I'm not feeling great and anything below 75 and I am probably shaking.  I know other people it has to get much lower before they start feeling it.  Everyone is different!  My blood sugar was at 69 so I definitely was feeling it.

I dug through the refrigerator and got myself some lunch.  Between the nap and the food I was feeling so much better.  Not looking forward to the long drive home but no longer having a mini melt-down over the thought of doing it.

Made it home and took a short walk to stretch out my legs (coaches orders) and then unloaded the car.  Got a load of laundry going and then went to bed.  Morning came all too soon and it was time to head out for my last day of work before my summer break began!

I loved being able to spend the weekend hanging out with some pretty fabulous people and getting to know them better.  There was lots of joking around and fun.  Coach fed us well, everyone worked together on getting things organized and making plans work.  Coach also was great about having some time to chat with each of us about our individual workouts.  The weather wasn't what we had been hoping for but it was still a lot of fun.  I enjoyed the new adventure!

It was also fun to watch Jon sitting with his laptop out and one by one each of us kind of migrated that way and had a chit chat with him about whatever needed to be discussed.  It wasn't formal and seemed to happen rather organically.  I like watching my coach be all coachy with other people besides myself.  😊

I also really enjoyed spending the weekend with a bunch of great people who are all working hard at different things but are having a lot of fun along the way.  I appreciate having a coach that has created a culture of support and encouragement.  It was a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to the 2nd Annual Pure Endurance Training Camp already.

While having a tired episode really sucked there was something that came from it that was good.  I really realized that I have done a much better job this past year managing my energy (and my stress) so that I don't get to this point.  I used to have days like this once a month or more.  I don't think I have had a day this bad since last fall.  That is a good thing!!  This helps me remember that I need to keep working at all aspects of my health and that managing my energy is an important part of that.

The first official day of my summer vacation I met up with my coach for the first of our summer bike rides together.  It was a little cold and rainy but we didn't care.  It was an easy ride so we could chat.  Great way to start my break, even with the rain.  😀

Since then I have had lots of workouts and lots of naps.  I really really like naps!

One of my favorite parts of being active is getting to do things with my husband.  My second favorite part of being active is being included in things with awesome people.  My third favorite thing is being about to go out and have some alone time and get some recharge time in the beautiful world we live in.

Here are some pictures from doing all of those favorite things that all happened in the last three days:

Saturday:  Open water swim, bike and run with Rebecca and Joe.
Foster Lake
Beautiful day for a ride!
Also a great day for a run! 
Rebecca, Joe and I.  Workouts for the day done and we beat the heat (100 degrees that day!)
Sunday: Solo run/walk on Bald Hill.
View at the top of Bald hill looking towards Mary's Peak. 

Monday:  Fun hike with my hubby with a spectacular view at the top.

New puppy is coming on Saturday, more about that in a future blog, and the next triathlon already looming in the not too distant future.  Other changes and challenges coming.  Some known, some unexpected.  But I will continue to look at the challenges as ways to grow and focus on the things that bring me joy.

I'm certainly learning to enjoy and appreciate the journey better.

**Photo credit on most of the Team pictures to Jon Booth.  😀






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