TBF Trail Racing

TBF Trail Racing

Posted by on Apr 11, 2016 in News, Stephanie's Blog |

At the end of February I agreed to join teammate Erin Wachter at the TBF Racing Lost Trail Half Marathon. Out of shape and lacking trail skills I knew I was in for a challenge but who can pass up an opportunity to race with a friend around Folsom Lake. As expected the race was hard but is it possible to do a race that isn’t hard?  I promised myself that I would run “easier” for the first half and then pick it up if I felt good and I am glad I did. I was able to pick it up to secure second overall. I learned that running the trails is hard – jumping over rocks, run from side to side at times, steep climbs and tricky descents but it was a refreshing change from Ironman training and chasing PRs on the road and a great opportunity to get in long runs with aid station support! Next up was the TBF Racing Chanoko 30k+(plus because it was almost 20 miles). I call this race the Poison Oak 30k because I walked away with enough poison oak for 3-4 people! The race took place the weekend of the big storm in March. Trees had fallen and covered parts of the trail leaving runners no choice but to climb through the bushes. These sections were so thick with foliage that you couldn’t decipher what was poison oak and what was just pretty green plants! This was my longest run ever (outside of the Ironman). I started fading the last few miles but I was happy with my effort, enjoyed being out their with fellow triathlete, Robin Soares, and happy to have got the win! Stay tuned for my report on Inside Trail Racing’s Knickbocker 35k and the Woodside Crossover 35k…   Stephanie...

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Super Sunday 5k

Super Sunday 5k

Posted by on Feb 10, 2016 in News, Stephanie's Blog |

It is the beginning of February and there are a few things I am certain of right now. One -I am getting stronger. I know this not only because I can do more push-ups and bench more than I could last fall but also because I recently put a shirt on for work and it didn’t fit and worse I couldn’t get it off. I contemplated suffering in the uncomfortable shirt all day but instead chose to wake up Sean to ask for help. He looked at me somewhat bleary-eyed and asked what I did to my shirt which of course I replied nothing; my deltoids are to blame! Secondly I am not in 5k shape right now. I was totally fine with this…at least until race morning when I had to figure out how to run 3.1 miles without imploding, suffering and getting beat by my friends’ kids. On the drive to the race start I managed to talk myself out of participating in the event but once I got there and saw my teammates, friends, and the race atmosphere I realized that running with everyone would be way more fun that hanging on the sidelines and it was! I also managed to achieve two of my three goals during the race– I didn’t implode and I minimized the suffering. And while I didn’t get beat by any of my friends’ kids several kids did beat me which made the day all the more fun. How often does a 40 year old get to run to the finish on the heels of a 12 year old boy! In the end I managed to finish 10th and sneak away with an age group win which landed me a huge gold ring and what girl doesn’t enjoy adding a little sparkle to her jewelry...

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The 2016 Season is Here

Posted by on Jan 18, 2016 in Stephanie's Blog |

Year 2 with Team Freeplay is under way and I couldn’t be happier. 2016 looks to be an inspiring, yet busy year for the Freeplay athletes with women competing every month of theyear. Last weekend’s team meeting definitely kicked me back into competitive mode. Listening to everyone’s goals for the season and their dedication to the sport was just what I needed to get me geared up to race again. As team director this season I am looking forward to supporting the 15 women on the team while they set out to reach their goals. While these women have proven themselves as fierce competitors on race day, they are also truly ambassadors for running, cycling, swimming and triathlon. If you haven’t had a chance to read more about them, I urge you to take a moment to view the individual athlete pages on our site. You will not be disappointed! As for my race schedule for the year – If you have been following my athletic endeavors for the past few months you are probably aware that I am shifting my focus from triathlon training to paddle boarding. I have some big goals for myself but I will save those for another time. Right now I am just working on technique, paddle fitness, and upper body strength with the help of Paddle Elite Fitness and The Ranch Athletics. And because sometimes sports are about small victories…I am also looking forward to the day that I can jump on my board and paddle without making my toes falling asleep due to the death grip I have on the board.  ...

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Spartan Sacramento

Posted by on Nov 8, 2015 in Stephanie's Blog |

Just after Ironman Lake Tahoe I started tinkering with the idea of doing the Spartan Super Race in Sacramento but I quickly realized that what I actually wanted was a break. After spending well over a year in triathlon training with no real break I was more than ready to hang up my bike, tuck away my swim gear and bring the run miles way down. I figured after a 1-2 weeks I would be anxious to jump back in but that was not the case. Not only was my body enjoying the lazy days, I was enjoying how many extra hours I had in my day. Needless to say the 1-2 weeks turned into a lot more and that is OK! Because of this I tossed away the idea of doing the Spartan event…that is until about two weeks before when I decided I was going to do it anyway and just have fun! With the race on Sunday I figured Friday night around 10:30pm was a good time to finally do a little recon work to see what I was getting myself in for. And after doing some goggling and searching here is the most important thing I learned: The race was actually Saturday…as in tomorrow…as in race morning is less than 7 hours away!! So recon work was done and mad packing and prep began. Starting the event in panic mode if definitely the best way to set yourself up for success, right?! About the race: 9.1 miles; 29 obstacles, very hilly off-road (no trails) Obstacle break-down: Walls: The places where I could pull myself up just enough to smash my tatas into my rib cage at the top of the wall while I tried to figure out of to swing myself over. Bucket of Rocks: Only fill to the holes not the top. I learned this at the top of the hill when the Spartan worker congratulated me on nice full bucket. At this point I tried to offer my extra rocks to others but oddly enough I got no takers! Barbed Wire: The places where bad words were used. I am fairly certain I still have gravel embedded in my knee caps. Monkey Bars: The things that I thought were so easy and fun as a kid. I also blame my lack of success here on my quads and calves…great for cycling bad for rings and monkey bars! #uselessweight Rope: Did I mention that I have been spending the last 3 weeks learning to paddle board and have to tape my hands because of the blisters? I only ask because my blisters didn’t play well with the rope! But in all fairness I wouldn’t have made it to the bell anyway, but it is much more fun to blame the blisters! Spear Throw: Of course I couldn’t do this but I do consider it...

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Ironman Lake Tahoe

Ironman Lake Tahoe

Posted by on Oct 1, 2015 in Stephanie's Blog |

This is now my 3rd attempt at writing a race report for Ironman Lake Tahoe. On attempt #1 I wrote a detailed account of how I injured my calf pretty bad 9 days out from the race only to make it worse because I was too stubborn to skip my long run two days after the injury. It was only after I reread the first three paragraphs that I realized that I could only hold people’s attention on this topic for about 2-3 sentences max. So I decided to start over. Attempt #2 focused on the race itself – my thoughts, my nutrition, my performance… All the typical things a typical race report encompasses. The problem here was my goal for this race was much different than my normal goal of crossing the finish line in the shortest amount of time possible regardless of how miserable I feel. Ironman Lake Tahoe was about finishing and having fun and in order to do this holding back on the bike was key so there nothing really eventful happened on the bike worthy of writing about. So once again I deleted the report and decided to start over yet again.   So here I go…   When you are out on the race course for 12 hours there is ample opportunity to think about just about everything. Here are the top 10 things that I remember thinking along the way in order from start to finish.   The sleeveless wetsuit was a great idea for about 40 minutes. The last 20 minutes were a bit chilly. There is no such thing as personal space in the water in an Ironman. Don’t forget about your feet when you are layering up on the bike. Cold toes for 40 miles is a less than stellar way to start a long day on the bike. Lobster gloves are great for keeping your fingers warm but challenging for finding food in your back pockets. Holding back on the bike does not mean your legs are going to feel like running 26.2 miles. I remember standing in T2 thinking I can’t move! After being on the course for over 8 hours I found that I totally did not care how slow I was running or what other people thought about my run pace. The one mile distance between each aid station seemed to last forever. Sprinting in an Ironman is slower than my easy run days. Starting a race with a reasonable goal and a positive attitude makes for a very enjoyable day. I will do another Ironman even though I said this was going to be a “One and Done” experience. FAQ: When is your next Ironman? I am not sure. I have some other endurance events I want to focus on for a while before jumping into my next one. I know I want to...

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How I Got My Money’s Worth at the Donner Half

How I Got My Money’s Worth at the Donner Half

Posted by on Aug 5, 2015 in Stephanie's Blog |

The Donner Half was like shopping at Cost-Co…I got more product for my money – more minutes on the race course that is! Based on my average time for this distance I usually pay roughly $0.83/minute but at the Donner Half it was just a mere $0.70/minute! I wish I could say that I convinced the race director to lower the registration fee but my bargain price was simply just the result of being on the course far longer than I had hoped. But instead of saying I went slow I am going to say I got my money’s worth! Here are the top 8 things that made my day far longer than necessary! 1.Lack of coffee! I had no coffee before the race. I have coffee EVERY day. 2.Clothing : I was really worried about being cold especially since I wore a sleeveless wetsuit. I do not handle being cold on the bike well so I decided to swim in a short tri top with the intention of putting on my long Freeplay top and my Freeplay bike jersey in transition. Haha!! I wasn’t even close to getting the long tri top since I was all wet from the swim. After at least two minutes of trying to unwed the clump of material stuck around my shoulders I tossed it on the ground and just wore the jersey. Ultimately I was plenty warm because there was a huge climb right out of transition. 3. The transition was in the dirt so when you run in with wet feet all the rock and dirt and twigs stick to them so when I went to put my socks on there was twigs, rocks and dirt all over my feet! I contemplated cleaning them with my towel but threw my socks on over the mess anyway because I had already spent too much time messing with my kit. This will prove to be a poor decision later. 4. With the plan of getting in more calories I mixed my bottles thicker than I normally do to practice for IM Tahoe. My body did not like this at all. By hour 2 I felt sick. I did 300 calories hour 1 and almost 300 hour two and then felt sick. I grabbed a water at one of the bike aid stations to try to flush the taste out but it didn’t really work. From hour 2:30 to 4:30 of the race I had NOTHING! Finally when my stomach started to settle I nibbled on potato chips at a rate of 2 per aid station. 5/6.  Bike Choice. Last minute I decided to bring my road bike because of the amount of climbing and descending. Two problems here.: I didn’t put aero bars on my bike and it was a compact. The course was up a steep hill, then a more gradual descent on the...

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