Plug problems and other…

Tough day today.  I awoke to the email announcing my plane tickets.

I did note that I am taking essentially a tour of North America on the way home.

Our trip leader texted me:  “Did you see the tickets”

Me: Yes, I am touring the USA on the way home”

TL:  sorry it was the way the budget did it

Me; It’s ok, it was kind of funny.

TL: It’s just stupid.

ME: well, ok, it is stupid.


I did my regular Wednesday workout.  Swim, run swim, getting out for my second run, I realized I had once again been a late Lucy and didn’t really have time for the run. I devised a plan to do it this afternoon and then ran smack into Coach.

He is all excited about my project.  I am churning through the things to worry about.  He is poo-pooing them all.  And eventually towards the end we actually had an interaction that resembled an argument.  So unpleasant.  He was displeased too that I had failed to execute the workout.

Work went pretty well.  I took care of business.  I was essentially focused on the external business of the trip, but…I did take care of the hospital’s business.

People are really responding with mixed emotions.  Most of them do not really have an understanding of how difficult the work will be, and thus are looking at this as a holiday trip for me or something. So they are either jealous, or just annoyed.  My Boss…really has been wonderful in bending over backwards to get things done for me and allowing me to go.

So I just kind of muddled through the day.

At exactly 5 pm, as I was chatting with the boss, my phone went off.  I had an email from my coach.  he was telling me he was super excited for me.  All the situation of the morning came back and I felt the immediate need to rush over there.  Which is essentially what I did. After stopping for a few things.

When I got there, I rushed into Physical Therapy still in my work clothes.  He looked a bit alarmed, and then immediately cut me the thera bands.


I went and changed and was putting on my shoes when he started to gesture to me.  I walked over and he had 4 sheets of exercises for me.  Yeah..Going to be a fun trip..working out with the therabands.

I told him I needed to run my 2 miles…and he added, “which you failed to do this morning”  and I hit the treadmill. My legs are tired.

After..I went to say goodbye and we both relaxed a bit.  Started to talk and talk about things.  His wife showed up and he and his wife prayed over me.  He was very specific even praying for my QL strain. She prays in a different style, but the gesture was so real and genuine that I appreciated it.  She and I chatted a bit for real for the first time, probably EVER.  She told me that “He can’t shut up about your trip”…I for the first time asked about the upcoming baby.  It was a good moment.

I left the gym and my phone beeped…coach sending me another message.  Good people in ones corner.

As we prayed, I received a message from the foundation’s board president.  The email was so welcoming and loving that I really started to feel good about this trip.

Of course, small problem…

I have not packed yet, and I can’t find my Nigerian plugs.  I really need to get organized, I am probably overrelaxed.


Build Week Wrap Up

I just realized that my coach, even though he sends me a Monday through Sunday plan is actually a Sunday through Saturday type of guy, so my rest week started today.

My build week finished. Whew.

As was expected, I felt pretty tired through the week.

Monday was a longer swim 2500 yards. This is actually starting to be on the shorter side of the swim world.

Tuesday was a tough day.  4 mile tempo run which went pretty well, then work, and then back to the gym for legs and abs and a 2000 yard swim.  I slept like a rock after all that.

Wednesday: Baby Brick. 6281

45 min cycle and 3 mile run.  It went better than I expected, so that was great.

Thursday was the dreaded speedwork. girl-on-treadmill.jpg?w=584

I handled the workout like a total boss, and was thrilled to report it to the coach as such. He seemed as excited as I was, because he replied with a “atta girl”  type message.  Then I had the very unpleasant in home massage.  Hated it.  Massage therapist was a bit of an ass.  I really didn’t want him in my home.  I learned my lesson, I wasn’t relaxed and I feel like he was too busy being nosy.

Unfortunately the later than normal massage made for a later than normal sleep time.  Which cascaded into a difficult wake up the next day, and some lack of organization.  I got started on my huge brick late.  I decided to eat a granola bar while on the cycle.  Yeah..not so great.  My stomach did pretty well at first, but then…it kind of caused me to feel funny.  When I started the run, I was feeling queasy, tired, Hot as heck outside, and so after about a mile, I made an executive decision and turned home and did 4.5 more on the treadmill.  THis was not the 7.5 I needed, but I called it quits.  The rest of the day my hip flexor was aching and I felt awful.  I also had a terrifically challenging day at work.  Eventually I sent the coach a message about it and what I planned to do about it.  Nothing back. Oddly as I was rolling into the gym and feeling utterly tired, one of the 5am regulars came up to me and said, “You’re working so hard these days…and it shows”  which did in fact help me to get going!  Always choose to encourage…Always.

Saturday I made my way to Lucky’s Lake.


At the lake, I took part in a demonstration of the safe swimmer buoy.  So that was different. I then had breakfast with a friend, and eventually made my way to the pool.  My coach was also swimming.  So…we chatted for a few and then I had to start the rest of my swim workout.  He confirmed that there were no issues with Friday.  He agreed that he would always let me know when to worry.  I did forget the pool closes at 4 pm , so I had to really swim fast to make the most of the workout.

Today- the start of my rest week, I ran 5 very hot and sweaty miles.  It was a sweat festival.  So wet…so wet.

I have less than 365 days to prepare for Comrades.  I’m feeling both tired and focused.  We’ll see…..

Wrapping up the week.

This was a pretty interesting week.

We had a lot of change ups in training and also work seemed to demonstrate some changes.

Work first since it pays for all the fun!  On Wednesday we got our “records request”  from the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services.  I spent the day trying to figure out where the second half of the request was.  It was buried in the packet that the manager of “Health Information Management”  had not really looked at.  It took about 6 hours of my 8 hour work day to unravel that, but I did. I was a wee bit annoyed, but really…this is why they pay me- in part- to be sure that stuff gets done correctly.

Oddly.  CMS has asked for 2 charts to review for Surgical Site Infection, and neither of the 2 patients they chose had a surgical site infection.   Both arrived at the hospital with nasty infections due to perforated bowels, both were discharged from the hospital within 5-10 days with no further visits returns or complaints.  So, I’ll be curious as to what the chart reviews of those two cases reveals.  I think it will reveal that their system of using coding to identify things is not very accurate.  (Yes both patients had an “infection related code”  but even the coders clearly noted “Present on admission”).

To add to my anxiety: CMS is validating the Laboratory ID reporting I do to the CDC.  CDC reporting is very focused on Location based lab testing.  CMS is focused on “billing status”  As in:  was the patient considered inpatient, observational, or outpatient.  CDC just cares where the patient was physically in the building.  I have no idea how CMS will judge or validate. I could do very well, if they validate on the CDC standards, or I could fail entirely if they interpret the CDC guidelines differently.

Anyway, the rest of the week, I have been pleasantly surprised at how easy to CDAC (Clinical Data Abstraction Center) has been to work with- in comparison to both CMS and CDC.  I sent them some examples of documentation for validation and they immediately replied that this was the appropriate documentation that they wished to see.  Usually, when dealing with Government I hear…. “We can not tell you what is or is not acceptable, only you can decide what is appropriate”….But CDAC help desk was very forthcoming and honest.  I told the help desk woman in York PA that she was 20 mins from my hometown to which she replied that I should come visit any time I’m back home.  This was much friendlier and I appreciated it.  I will go visit, if only to see the building and people who have caused me such angst.

SO, looks like we will soon have the records copied and sent off, and then I sit and stew until about Mid-July when I receive an arbitrary score…based on…I mean, they are supposed to be checking how accurate I am with my reporting, but they chose 2 patients who did not even have any infections….etc.  I say this because I do feel that the reporting on websites such as “Hospital Compare”   doesn’t actually often reflect anything current or truthful about the quality of care provided at any hospital.  I know they are trying, but…current data on the website is about 1 -2 years old as it is.

So,  I may survive this validation process.  This is the tail end of round one. I have 2 more quarters to go after this.

BUT….What is life without training?  Mine would be kinda empty.

Monday I had off for Memorial Day. THis is a huge change for working out, as loads of people did not work on memorial day.

The gym and pool were closed, so I headed out to Lucky’s Lake.

I was essentially supposed to do the distance that equalled 3 crossings.  I don’t know what got into me, but I just did one.  I was tired.  Plus, I got a lot of water up my nose which gave me quite a bit of pause.    I let coach man know and he didn’t seem to care about the lack of distance. I did not bother him about my amoeba fear, I mean if I get it I’m just gonna pretty much die.  I did have the thought that if I had amoeba, I would not have to worry at all about reporting requirements, ha ha ha I think I’m out of the amoeba window for now.

Tuesday I went back to work and training.

4 mile tempo run which was WOW…really BAD!   I had one mile at projected tempo pace. Mile number 2 I could not hold pace at ALL.  Usually mile 2 is an easy fast mile, but not today.  At the end of mile 2 I regrouped and thought I would “jog home”  but actually Mile 3 ended up being quite fast.  Mile 4 has some rather large hills at the end and so it also ended up being like Mile 2. I hate hated this run.  So frustrating. Post work, I had a legs workout and a swim. The legs workout went pretty well and the swim was awesome…my own lane on a tuesday evening.  My friend was supposed to swim with me but she cancelled, which really didn’t affect me…I’m always going to get my workouts done.

Wednesday I had a Brick.


Unlike many, I like me some brick.  This one was a simple 35 min spin and a 3 mile run.  because of Tuesday’s fail, I felt pretty hesitant.  I saw my friend in the locker room between the bike and run….(so yes transition was extended for shoe change bathroom, and chit chat.  well, I’m not really a triathlete!).  I moaned a bit and one of the professional triathletes grinned madly at me, as I was already pretty sweaty as I said, “I’m a just gonna do a little itty run out there…”  The run turned out FINE.  I think the spin loosened up my hip.  It was more of a tempo run than my tempo run.  I was definitely aware of the hot hot hot and muggy humid conditions, but somehow I just ran through them…Hope this is the start of a summer of just getting through, which would be loads and I mean LOADs better than last summers Moan and Whine festival.

Thursday:  Speed work on the treadmill.  I could have done this outside, but chose the TM for flatness and also for the air conditioning.  (No joke there.)  2 sets of 2 mile repeats.  This is a bit gentler than 800 repeats.  I had a bit of trouble deciding what speed to take them at.  I was afraid to commit to a speed that I “Should” be doing them at, because I wanted to be able to complete the repeats.  So…they may have ended up slower, but that’s what I did.  The 2 mile repeats is really a tricky workout..Start out too fast…and somewhere you fail…start too slow and you feel like a total slug that didn’t push it.  I feel Ok about these, I’m in a build period and still trying to get it together with the speed work.  Whatever.

Thursday Night I did some arms and abs and hung around with the Coach.  We had some good discussion about the repeats, and things in general. He is such a good influence on my life.  I hope we continue in the vein we have been in recently.  Coaching relationships, like any other relationship can have ups and downs and can be quite intense.

Friday I had another Brick.  50 min cycle and 7 mile run.  Yes, that is not a typical brick, but I’m not a triathlete.  The purpose of a brick for me is to get used to running on tired legs.  My legs were tired, but I was so glad to be getting it done on a Friday.  It did make for a bit of a “low motivation” day at work. This was the second switch, it was in order to get me on the run at 6 am rather than at 8 am, makes a big difference right now with the heat.

Saturday was a blast.  because of our switch- I got up late, hung around the house, piddled about…and eventually made my way over to the gym for a long long swim.  2 miles of swimming later, I inhaled some pizza, and rested, still feeling like I had done an easier workout than normal…(I did Friday’s workout, plus a few more yards.)

Today I had the “long” run.  12 miles again.  I tried out Chia seeds in my nutrition, and added in an extra salt stick cap.  I also forced myself to intake more liquid than I wanted.  I think as I get warm, my interest in drinking or eating goes down, but if I decrease my intake, well… It seems to have worked pretty well.  I did not get miserably chilled like last week after, and my run was slightly faster than last week, on the same route despite starting later.

So overall feeling pretty good.  My one current work/life balance obstacle is this exam I am supposed to be studying for.  I take it in July. I periodically pull out index cards, but honestly…I do not want to study.  So lets hope I pass it in July because if I do not, I will be studying until October when I will have to retake it and hopefully pass.

Overall a good training week.  Only 6 more hard days then I get a rest week…which is a diet week, and a study week too.

Today of course is Comrades Marathon day.  So training seems to have taken on a new appeal.


Strangest Build week ever.

This week…I was entirely owned by my emotions.  e5aa5d8f50030ed4be9a8c52025ebf9e

Oh…I sufferred.  It was an amazing drain on my life.  Every time I thought I had “dealt with it” something new aspect that I had not considered would pop into my brain.  I’d be back a square one.

Back to Square One signpost

By the end of the week, I think I had kind of gotten used to this new negative feeling.  Most of the week, I muddled about and made it through work and my workouts.  Thursday though, was speedwork.  Well…. you can’t fake speedwork.  I failed it. I was hoping to do it well, just as a morale booster. But it didn’t work out that way.  In the past, I would have been entirely miserable about it, and while I was immediately aggravated, I also have a bit more perspective. One failed speed work out in the middle of a week of true crisis…seven months away from my marathon…not the end of the world.  The end of the world- well, the melting of the polar ice cap thing is a bit more of a candidate.

Friday I did my Saturday Brick.  We had a mysterious blessing from God.  A COLD FRONT blew into central Florida.  It was 65 degrees.  This is not exactly chilly, but for us it was enough.  Best brick of the month.  I entirely found the urn to be healing.

Saturday, I volunteered for Special Olympics- the summer games down at Disney.  I did it with a friend, and we enjoyed ourselves very much.  We worked with the soccer matches, and didn’t really have a whole lot of interaction with the athletes, which was a little bit disappointing to me, next year I’ll try to do something different!  The weather again was perfect.  We just really enjoyed being outside.

Today I got up and did my longer run. 11 miles of hills.  My legs felt rather fatigued to begin with, but not horrible.  The entire run I was focused on pace, and it did pay off.  My fueling was perfect. The temperature at 64 was wonderful.  I was very happy at my endurance, as I was able to without any little walk breaks for a long long time. I finally had to stop to take in nutrition.  In addition at the turn-around, I find it easier not to try to pivot around on my legs.

Tuesday, I brought my super fabulous coach some blueberries, and he spent some time with me.  It helped, but it wasn’t the healing that sleep and rest and time was.  One thing though that has struck me, as I mulled over our conversation was that moment when I shrugged and said, “It doesn’t matter.”  and he looked at me and said, “Oh it does, it really does, and it’s awful.”  Nice to have someone in your corner.  I’m lucky in that way.  Sometimes I feel unlucky.

oooh, and a very nice man started to talk to me at the gym…I’m not sure why so we’ll see where that goes!!!!

Work is still horrible, but in general I am feeling much better.

As always…the only way out is through.  I sure hope coach man doesn’t give me some watered down sissy week….

This week in training and Life.

It was quite a week for me in training and in life.

Monday was pretty awesome as I just a short swim on the paper.  That didn’t take long, so I got to sleep in a bit.  The pool was chilly and that felt great on my legs which have been feeling a bit sore.

Monday evening I had a massage which was really good and worked out a lot of “stuff” (Aches and pains) and seemed to energize and loosen my legs.

Monday evening I also broke out into a rash on both shoulders.  Not sure if it was from the sheets at the massage place, or a new detergent or new soap, or what.  Anyway, I expected it to go away rapidly. Sometimes the guy uses a powder on the sheets- He has a mobile service so I am sure he washes and then stashes sets of sheets in the car and wants them to always smell nice.

Tuesday was a swim and run.  I swam, then I ran.  All went well.  Tuesday night was weights.  I did a very good focused weights workout, and at the same time felt fat and out of shape.  Stuff that used to be easy for me is now once again challenging.


Still the only way out is through. I worked up a sweat and enjoyed being at the gym.  I know lots of people go to clubs or bars to socialize and relax.  That is the gym for me.  I chatted with some people as I struggled through my weights workout.  It actually made things much better.  Over the last 2 years I have met and sustained some good “gym friendships”.  They don’t go further than the gym, but the support that we give each other is really great.  I’ve shared more with some of my gym friends than with my other friends.

Wednesday: Well.  On Wednesday…a Miracle occurred.

Seriously.   In late April, a cold front blew into Central Florida.  (It blew all over the Northern US as well, and for that I am sorry, but wow..we adored it).

I had a tempo run and the temperature was 48 F.

I thought it was actually 56 or so, but decided to don long sleeves.  By the end of the run my legs, in shorts felt a tiny bit numb.  (The cold wind blowing while running was probably why, not the 48 degrees, which for most is pretty warm.) This run just felt awesome.

love to run

I always need one of these runs every few months, because they just bring me such Joy.

Thursday was Speedwork.  I am OUT of the caffeine product I normally use on Speed workout days (and long run days.)  So I ran without.

Actually went very very well.  There was a moment in the last 800 repeat where I really wanted to shed several tears. I was so tired, and spent.

Friday was a long swim and run- the workout that killed me last week.  This week, it actually went better than expected.  The run felt HORRID.  My legs hurt, my breathing was off, I felt ICK, you name it.  But I just continued to pound away and in the end the time was appropriate and falls into the normal current times of my training bucket.

On friday I also got super annoyed with above mentioned rash, and went to the doctor.  The rash is contact dermatitis, from something (sheets, detergents, etc) but he noted my hair looked really thin and brittle so I have a bucket of lab test to do on Monday.  Which I am excited about, I sure would like my hair quality to improve.

Saturday- Impromptu Triathalon- swam at the Lake, biked and ran.  By 4 pm I could barely stay awake.

Today, I ran the Clay Road here.  It’s kind of a cult thing.  Lots of people run the clay road, but even MORE PEOPLE claim to do it and love it. I always hear how much people love it, and I know they’ve been out on it like 2 times in their lives, or less.  Today, there was one Tri team, 2 “old” guys  and me.  It is hilly.IMG_7347

It just kind of goes up and down and undulates through some beautiful farm areas of Florida- so Citrus and blueberries (we aren’t really corn and wheat kind of people). It was overcast and rainy which is the best way to run the clay as there’s no cover when it’s very sunny.  It was a tough one, but I got through it. Great training, big headwind.

On Facebook I have decided to do 100 happy days challenge. most days it’s easy but another friend of mine is doing it and on some days we have agreed that it’s a bit difficult to find something to be happy about.  I am trying to really LOOK for happiness rather than to post the typical photo of a large coffee.  So far I am not sure it makes me happier, but I do enjoy posting the photos daily.

Other than that, I want to take my certification exam. I am tired of studying even if I don’t know all the answers.  LOL. so going to do a practice exam and if it goes ok I will do some targeted studying and take the thing at the end of May.  Then wheee. I can concentrate on training.


End of week.

Happy Sunday everyone!

How has your week been?  Any awesome training?  Any Awesome events?

I regret to tell you all that my week of training was kind of regular, like always.  No events, Nothing particularly awesome.  I’m fighting a bit of a feeling of despair.


Because I am an adult, I know that this feeling comes and goes.  When smack in the middle of it though, it’s unpleasant and it is hard to believe that it will pass.  Plus, it’s a bit hard for others to understand.  Like, I’m really battling this out, and I come in the gym and my friend is there…she wants to complain about not getting a parking spot close to the door because of a soccer tournament. She is fired up about this, and I am like feeling like I am sinking into a mudpit of misery.  So I kind of kept to myself a lot.


So training.

So I am feeling lousy.  But the week was designed really well.  I could hug my coach (but I probably won’t…) Every time I would think “oh wow, I’m pretty sore, I don’t want to run when I’m this sore”  there was suddenly a swim on the workout.  It was like Ha ha ha, the workout was designed for me…(which duh, it was).

17.5 miles this week.  It seems like nothing but I admit that it has been somewhat draining on me.

2 swim sessions which adds in about 3 miles of swimming

and the Bike… about 54 bike miles total.

So since I am so down on myself…I need to recognize progress:

Tempo run on Wednesday…I know it should be on Tuesday so I can report “tempo tuesdays”  but whatever, my tempo is usually wednesdays.  I did not want to run it and found that I am capable of running below my 5K PR pace…(well for 2 miles).

FIrst speedwork session of the year.



Executed perfectly.  learned some new strength exercises.

Had a bit of fun cycling with a friend.

Hoping my persistent bad mood lifts soon…I have a feeling it may.



Week’s end wrap up

This wasn’t really my best week in training.  In fact, as one point, I actually almost cried a little with my coach.  BUT…I’m going to try to make this as positive and easy to read as possible!

I feel like a New Year’s Resolutioner.

I am so horribly out of shape and a bit over my normal weight, so I fit right in with everyone else who is currently crowding our gym! For the record, I really have no issues with resolutioners. I kind of hope they stick around and learn to love the fitness lifestyle.

I did several swims and you might have noted that even Florida got cold this week.


It was pretty darn cold.  My first swim coincided with the coldest day we’ve had all year, so I plunged into steaming water in 39 degree temps and actually thought I was quite the bad-ass. I swam a fairly fast mile, because there was some guy with flippers on chasing me.  (if you swim with flippers you are automatically gonna be faster than most without).

This was truly the high point of Bad-Assery this week, after my swim it just went down down down hill.

This week saw a return to strength training. This kind of demolished me.  I started with what I thought was kind of a wimpy superset of leg exercises.  I kind of scolded myself for not doing more.  The next day, I found I could barely walk.


I suppose it was a good workout. Sitting and standing were tough for the next 2-3 days.  My officemates are sedentary and think I am insane. Because I still don’t seem to Look like Barbie…they also see no value in what I do.  It’s hard to explain. I don’t even try anymore.  Does anyone else work in an office like that?


Here I am December 1, at the Space Coast Marathon/half, so you see I am indeed NOT Barbie.

Sooo…I went into a bit of a tempo run on Wednesday with some trepidation, and also some joy. I REALLY wanted to run.  I was able to take it slightly faster than my 10K PR pace,and it ended up feeling pretty good, but I knew I was sore.

Thursday I had a swim in the morning.  Wind whipping around, the heating in the pool wasn’t working too well, and I was the only one in the pool.  Something about it just didn’t sit right with me.  I’m a little tired of swimming in the dark.  In addition, legs were still feeling torn up.  All I could think about was sharks.  Ridiculous.  But true.   I confessed this to my coach, and now I’m a bit worried that he will put one of those small mechanical sharks in the pool sometime…. It would be like him, and it WOULD be hilarious, but I am afraid it might also scare me to pieces.

Thursday night we had a weights get together.  I was in my mood and he seemed tired, so it was a fairly focused quiet session. We worked for 30 minutes on technique, and about 30 minutes of trying to get me to learn the Turkish Get up…OMG Try it…you’ll either love it or hate it. I hate it right now, but I’m gonna learn it, then I’ll love it.

I think my coach demonstrates better.  My coach has been doing cross fit for a few months now.  I am starting to see a lot of cross fit style exercises creep into my stuff.  I’m definitely not into Cross-Fit as a “sport” but hopefully he is picking the exercises that make sense for me. We had some deep discussion about coaching there at the end. I really almost quit everything during December, it was so hard, and then I almost changed coaching.  I’m still frustrated at doing what seemed easy just 3 months ago and finding it hard.  But, I can see now why most New Years resolutioners just quit.  I’m pretty lucky to have my coach, even if this week, all the workouts just seem to lack any fun element.

Friday and Saturday ushered in moments of “Garmin Fail”  My garmin tracked my runs, but later when trying to look at the data it told me my last run was Wednesday.  I fiddled with it and finally in desperation deleted all the old data.  After that, my current runs came up, and on Sunday it wasn’t an issue.

Sunday I ran a very short run, and did a spin out on the cycle.

I feel like I put out good effort during the week.  My only wish would be that I would be allowed to sign up for the 10K that I want to do at the very least.