Lance . . .
Lance is not my name pick. Lance is, er was, Lala's bike. She is a Lance fan.
Lala called this morning and told me to come pick him up. Pop bought Lala Lance a few years ago. Lala has osteoarthritis in her neck. Apparently this makes Lance painful for her to ride. While we were at the beach she told me I could have Lance. I didn't take her too seriously as I didn't think Pop would at all go for that. Pop is pretty possessive about his things and while he bought Lance for Lala it still falls under the category of Pop's things.
See, Pop is a man who firmly believes in the adage of whoever has the most toys when he dies wins. He has a tool museum (cement mixer anyone? double edge miter saw? framing nail gun? pressure washer?), a couple of cars ( okay just 3 now but when I was selling my Jeep he considered buying it from me because he hated to see it go but I said no. Just seemed wrong to sell a man a car he bought in the first place. As it ended up I sold it to my cousin and the fact that it remained in the family was good enough for Pop).
Pop likes to own things and lots of things he does have: boats, computers, camping and fishing gear etc etc. In our family there is a saying and it goes like this:
Why buy what you can borrow from Beau?
But lest you get any ideas about stealing from Pop I should warn you that not only is he a black belt in karate but he also takes very seriously his right to bear arms. I've only seen them a few times and only one time all at once when he had them laid on the kitchen table admiring? cleaning? I don't know, but I do know that he has a safe taller and three times wider and deeper than me full of guns of all calibers and gauges.
When I began thinking about doing a triathlon I really wasn't too worried about the fact that I do not own a bike because I knew that Pop has at least 4 maybe as many as 6 Trek bikes--definitely 2 mountain bikes and 3 or so road bikes. (If nothing else Pop is brand loyal.) Pop does ride regularly and has for as long as I can remember; but does not ride as frequently as the number of bikes he has suggests. And I figured surely he can spare one of his bikes for his oldest and favorite child (Sorry Pookie, Justin.)
I definitely did not have my eye on Lance since I thought no way would Pop be ready for Lance to go. And I can't say for certain that Pop actually knows that Lala said I could have Lance nor that she called me and told me to come and take him. See, while Pop is a toy hoarder-- Lala, on the other hand, is happy to let any of it go and actually tries to get rid of as much stuff as she can get away with. If you want something Pop has it is always best to ask Lala for it.
So the short of this long is that now I have a bike; well, yeah, sort of. It is a Trek and has the number 1200 on it. What this means? I have no idea and Lala didn't either as she was not at all helpful on instructions on how the gears work or anything else other than that there were extra brakes and it is silver, like a rocket. This means that I am going to have to ask Pop about Lance's specs and that is going to be a pretty painful experience where I get way more information that I ever will need. I will probably walk away from that conversation knowing how to build a Trek bike. This is what happens when half your relatives are engineers.
But in truth I could probably use the advice. So far my future with Lance is not too promising. First, after I went and fetched Lance, I came back in the front of my parent's house to find my children leaping over the sprinkler, fully clothed. Oh well. Lala bought me a box of Allen wrenches and I worked on lowering the seat (I'm shorter than Lala). I thought I had it about right and climbed on: only to immediately topple sideways over into the mud.
Told you I was an idiot on the bike. Ryan thinks I am sandbagging about my specialness on the bike because I occasionally do a spin class and one time I rode from Roswell to Atlanta on a mountain bike. But in spin class the bike is bolted to the floor and it is just a miracle I didn't get killed on that ride downtown.
After some further adjustments to the seat and my pride, I finally managed to get on the bike and took Lance for a test ride on the street--just 2 miles--2 miles during which I could not figure out the gears at all but otherwise it felt fine enough. With "fine" being based on nothing. I have no idea what I am talking about.Whatsoever.
When Lance and I returned from our spin I found my kids completely naked and leaping over the sprinkler. I thanked Lala for her generous gift and crammed Lance into the back of the Explorer and strapped wet naked kids in car seats and drove home thinking that I most certainly would get pulled over for something random and dumb--because usually that is how things work for me. But I didn't and I am grateful that I didn't have to explain to a police officer why I had naked kids in my car. Small favors.
I know I didn't post much last week. I have been running. Boring. Same old same old: Running. Little cross training, some walks, little weight lifting--nothing new. I think I did 45 or so miles last week. I am trying to organize some sort of training program for the summer. I think I am going to have to cut the mileage if I want to incorporate the biking and swimming. And it is hard for me to give up the running. It is my security blanket. I feel like nothing is as hard as running or keeps me in as good of shape. I know that this probably isn't true so I am trying to wrap my mind around that and trade a few running workouts for a swim and a bike workout. So far that hasn't happened. I just run before the other workout.
I ran 10 miles yesterday--easy. This afternoon I ran 4 miles on the treadmill in under 30 minutes and then hopped in the pool for a workout. And I learned some things.
First the pool at the gym isn't a 25yd pool like I thought but is a 25 meter pool this is per the gentlemen in the lane next to mine that I pestered. So that mile I swam 2 weeks ago in 30 minutes? It was actually more than a mile. Pats self on back. Second, I am pretty certain that I was a faster swimmer when I was 10 than I am now at 35. I can't remember my times for the 100 but I think it was faster than what I did today. I definitely remember it being much more effortless.
My original plan today after my run was to just do a 400yd swim and see how long that took--just to get an idea of where I was starting and what I needed to work towards. After a warm-up I changed my mind and decided to test out my speed at 100 meters--especially since the pool is meters not yards and I don't know how many laps I needed to do. I asked nice guy next to me but he didn't know. This whole meter/yard/mile/lap thing is confusing. I am having to do more figuring and math than I generally like to do.
I warmed up with an easy 100m.
Then I did 100m x 4 with about a minute rest between each 100m. Please note that I was not scientific with the rest whatsoever. Mostly, I spent the rest time asking the nice man in the lane next to me a bunch of questions and had him doing my math for me. Not sure what sort of workout he was doing but he was standing there every time I finished a 100.
I borrowed Beau's stop watch (my Beau, not Pop. I should also tell you that I am wearing his goggles too--again the 3 year old's not the 56 year old's. They are Nike though. And they totally suck.)
Here are my results--again not scientific since I had the watch sitting on the pool edge and to manually paw wet handed over the pool's edge to stop it:
The first 100m came in at 1:30
The second 100m came in at 1:25
The third was 1:28
The last was 1:29
Really this workout was harder than I thought it would be and brought back memories of the time clock and pyramid intervals and the chaos of diving swimmers and the muted echoes of coaches screaming go!go!go! I wished today I had had someone to yell at me when to go. It is hard to push yourself in the quiet and calmness of the gym pool. Especially with polite man in the next lane who patiently answers all of your annoying questions.
I cooled down for 200m and called it a workout.
So now I have a starting point and I think a reasonable goal is to get 100m below 1:25 and shoot for 6-7 minutes for the 400m. I don't know how lap swimming translates to the open water. I am assuming you are slower in the open water but then again you don't lose time for flip turns and you've got that race day magic going on. There is race day magic in triathlons too, right?
Okay, so I guess I am tri-ing. On to the bike. So nervous. . .