On January 2 I went for my first bike-run training day. I used a free app called Map My Ride to track miles and speed, which was kind of cool. My biking circuit is 3.5 miles, and I did it twice in just over half an hour, which was my target training time. The split time tracker makes it look like I was really slow at the beginning, but really I didn't know how to use the app very well and so part of that was me dinking around in the driveway. Then, early in the ride as I adjusted the volume on Pandora, I knocked my phone out of its holster and it fell on the ground. I was lucky it didn't get run over by the car that was coming through right after! I'll use the extra security bands for future rides.
Once my ride was done, I stripped off my outer jacket and helmet but kept my knit hat and gloves for the 10 minute run, which was about 1.25 miles (one time around my running circuit.) My legs were a little janky-feeling at first, but they sorted themselves out. I kept a slow and steady pace, pleased that I didn't feel like I needed to drop to a walk at any point. I did get passed by a lady pushing a double stroller. Show-off.
Yesterday was a run-only day for 25 minutes. I did two times around my circuit plus some extra to get to the right time. The weather out was near 30 degrees, but after the first lap I was pretty warm.
Today I was scheduled for a 30 minute bike ride. It's rainy miserable out, so I tried out my new set-up in the basement, which is a craft room, laundry repository, random item collection site, occasional office, now a workout space. I have an old 10-speed that has a similar saddle feel as the bike I think I'll be using for the duathlon on a Crescendo Fitness trainer for days when I can't ride outside. When I have bike-run days when the weather is crappy, I'll head to Planet Fitness. Today was bike-only, so I gave my home rig a try. I watched last night's episode of the Rachel Maddow Show, and the time flew by.
Those are the highlights from the last couple of days. I'm a little sore but not too sore. I'm still encouraged and enthusiastic. On to week two!
Yesterday I made my first appearance at Planet Fitness in awhile. They played it cool -- no one acted super surprised to see that I am moving from the "donor" role to the "fee for service" customer. Good for them! Of course, it is the new year, so probably lots of people with good intentions are showing up about now. I know enough about resolutions and goal-setting to know that I need a plan and some structure.
Being the good researcher that I am, I turned to the internet for books, blogs and more. Regarding duathlon specifically, there's really not that much. I suppose the triathlon people think I can just do that but take out the swimming part. But logically, it seems like the training would be different. So I kept looking. I found a beginner's training schedule, but it doesn't really define what kind of duathlon. The one I've signed up for is 2-mile run, 10-mile bike, 3.1 mile run, which I think is on the easier side, as these things go. And, I've got more than 10 weeks to prepare, so I think if use this one as a guide, I probably can't go too wrong.
So yesterday I went to Planet Fitness and rode a stationary bike for the prescribed 30 minutes. It really wasn't too much like riding the bike I think I will be riding in the duathlon, so I'm musing on how to set up my at home trainer and suitable bike.
Today I went for a run for 15 minutes. I have a circuit that is 1.25 miles that at my current pace was just about 15 minutes, so that will work on days that aren't too cold or wet. And when they are, I have the treadmill at Planet Fitness. Tomorrow I'm supposed to bike 30 minutes and run 15 minutes. I have the day off from work and the weather forecast looks okay, so I'm going to attempt an outside session. I think I need to figure out a biking circuit to match my running circuit so that I can just have my 30-minute ride ready to go. The more time I give myself to overthink things, the more likely I am to not get it done! So, While the weather is okay today, I'll map a route that looks pretty safe even at dawn and time it tomorrow, then adjust from there.
Other interesting resources I've found, if you are also looking for duathlon resources and you found me instead :-) --
Mostly though, I figure if I can train with elements that include: run some, bike some, then run-bike, then run-bike-run, I'll be able to do this.
* I'm not sponsored in any way, but always open to offers!
Extra disclaimer: blogging takes time. Since I have a full time job and NOW I'm training for a duathlon, not sure how often I'll be able to update. But, my intention is to check in at least weekly.
Yesterday I turned 55. Today I signed up for a duathlon. I've been contemplating doing one for awhile. The only thing that's kept me from it is the actual training that it will require. :-)
Y'all get to go on the journey with me. Today I ordered new sneakers. I found a training program on line. There is suprisingly little about duathlon-only event training. Next:
1. Figure out which bike I should use
2. Scout the course -- hilly? (I don't think so)
3. Schedule my workouts. This will mean reacquainting those people at Planet Fitness with my visage.
I shall document my prep. I hope I will enjoy the journey!
If you've done a duathlon and have types or resources, please share!
It's been awhile since I've posted, but rest assured I'm still around. I spend most of my creative energy regarding celiac disease and happy, healthy gluten-free living at my Day Job as Director of Communications and New Media for Beyond Celiac, a leading patient advocacy organization driving research for treatments beyond the gluten-free diet, and ultimately a cure altogether. One of the cooler projects we've worked on lately is Gut Reaction: How Celiac Disease is Triggered and Might Be Treated. I narrate the video version (though you can just download the slides), so it's almost like having me explain the physical mechanics of celiac disease to you in person. A treat!
Working on it was actually a big help to me. I, like many of us with celiac disease, knew the mechanics to the level of "gluten sets off an autoimmune reaction causing damage to the lining of your small intestine and interfering with absorption." In my mind, I'd pictured gluten as a giant sheet of sandpaper buffing my villi to a glossy sheen, like a ski slope. (I was supposed to go skiing today, but I had some minor surgery on my back, which is keeping me on unslick surfaces. However, I do like a chance to post good snow pics, especially since I've been glued to the Winter Olympics!*)
There's way more to what's going on in our bodies than that! And, Gut Reaction gave me a peek into how the treatments in the research pipeline might stop this damage. I'm definitely in the camps of either the "break down the gluten before the damage can happen" or the "tighten my cellular junctions before gluten can get through" approach. Definitely worth checking out.
* And speaking of the Winter Olympics, keep an eye on Resi Steigler. She's a downhill Olympic skier from Jackson Hole WY and she has celiac disease. This is her third trip to the Olympics. Let's cheer her to victory!
I don't do too many product reviews here any more. There are just too many products out there. But after enjoying a Beast Burger, I knew I had to write it up.
Before my celiac disease diagnosis, I probably ate 1-2 vegan Boca Burgers a week. I liked Boca best because they tasted rather meaty, held together well, and their texture was somewhat like what I remember of meat burgers back in 1992 when I still ate them. Bocas are essentially just wheat gluten, so clearly they have been off-limits for the last 6 years. I've tried numerous other gluten-free veggie burger brands and even tried to make my own, but usually the taste or texture was just wrong. I especially hate that most of them are so mushy. One bite through a (usually dense) gluten-free bun and a typical GF veggie burger oozes out the sides like the ice cream in a Chipwich on a warm summer day.
I'd seen the Beast Burger in the frozen case at Martindale's Natural Foods. They are more expensive -- somewhere around $6 for a two-pack. All of the gluten-free veggie burgers look good and claim to be delicious on the packaging, so I had worked my way through the less expensive ones and not found my new favorite. The Beast Burger does look pretty meaty, sturdy, burgery and flavorful on the box, so recently when I had a few extra bucks, I picked some up.
Total home run. These dudes are da bomb. Big, good texture, delicious flame-broiled tastiness. I ate them on a chunk of a Taffets* bagette with lettuce, tomato and mustard (mocked up for this photo, since I ate the burgers withouth taking a pic). Really awesome.
Preparation: No microwaving. Sad. I did mine in a non-stick pan with a little olive oil, 3-ish minutes a side and standing right over it so I didn't burn it. Perfect.
Obligatory nutrition facts: First I have to say that I haven't paid much attention to calories and fat in a regular hamburger for a long time, and Beast Burgers are very comparable. They make a huge deal about the 23 grams of protein on the package. As a (mostly) vegan, I appreciate a load of protein. That's kinda where the nutrition bonuses stop for me, since I'm not a skinny person training for a marathon. 260 calories from the patty alone. Add that to any readily available gluten-free bun with toppings, and you are looking at upwards of 500 calories and 21 grams of fat. I may have to start training for a marathon so that I can eat these more often.
Bottom line: Delicious. Sturdy. Burger-like. Vegan. Gluten-free. My quest is over.
* Taffets is a 100% gluten-free bread bakery in Philadelphia and their stuff is really splurge-worthy. They ship to any location where FedEx says they can get it to you within 48 hours. I can personally vouch for the challah, bagettes, and various sandwich breads. Fortunately, Martindales carries a supply from them too, so I can stay in Springfield and get the best bread without trying to find parking in the Italian Market.