Training Update

I realized that I haven't updated my training log in over a week! I had to do quite a bit of rearranging and such this week, due to my schedule and the weather (rain, rain go away..). But, I managed to get it done. Not to mention, switching it up a bit is good for your body...keeps it guessing! So, going back to last Friday (the 20th):

Friday: 5:15am boot camp at the park. Mile run in 9:12. Timed push up and sit up test (can't remember my exact #s now). Circuit training and ab work.

Saturday: 20 mile bike ride on the Silver Comet Trail. This was our first time riding here, and definitely will not be our last! So beautiful - and on such a beautiful spring day! This trail actually meets up with another and is a total of over 100 miles one way - going all the way to Anniston, Alabama. This time, we started at the trailhead in Smyrna....did the 10 miles out to Powder Springs and back. The great part about this trail is that there are places to park and pick it up at several points along the way. Next time, we'll start at a different point for new scenery.

While not a "workout," it is Team in Training-related, so I will mention it. On Saturday night, we attended a fundraiser put on by the Georgia Chapter's Spring Tri Team at Fado Irish Pub in Buckhead. My friend (and boot camp coach) Maria is on the Spring team, competing in the St. Anthony's Tri in just 4 weeks! There was a great turnout on a gorgeous night! Hors d'oeuvres, drinks, silent auction, raffles, and good fun. I think the team raised over $8000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society that night!

Sunday: Another beautiful weather day - and with rain in the forecast, I wanted to take advantage of it while I could...(despite the fact that I had chores and errands galore to take care of!) Did a 2.5 mile run at Sims Lake Park in 26:31.

Monday: Workout #1 - 5:15am boot camp! Workout #2 - 1 hour swim after work. I'm no longer doing drills at all, and am working on perfecting my form and building my endurance for continuous swim.

Tuesday: my rest day for the week.

Wednesday: TEAM swim after work. This week marked our first "benchmark swim." We all (40+ of us) started in one lane of the pool, and swam (up one lane, down the next) continuously for a timed 10 minutes. We will do this again every couple of weeks to measure our endurance progress. My first benchmark? 325 yards in 10 minutes. After that, we tackled the "pyramid drill" (see below for explanation.)

Thursday: 5:15am boot camp.

Friday: 5:15am boot camp.

Saturday: Plans changed several times for Saturday's workout. TEAM workout was supposed to be a brick (ride, then run) at Stone Mountain. But, I had already committed to run a 5K for the Fallen Heroes of Georgia. Then, the weather forecast was looking even nastier, so TEAM rescheduled the Stone Mountain brick and changed the workout to an indoor spin class (which I was happy about, because I really didn't want to miss the ride at Stone Mountain). Woke up Saturday morning to really bad weather, and decided to donate the money to Fallen Heroes of Georgia charity, and swim at the gym instead! Swam for over an hour, and did the "pyramid drill," where you swim laps, increasing the yards each time up to the "top" of the pyramid, and then back down. You take a 30-60 second break in between each set. So, I did: 50-100-150-200-150-100-50. Felt great afterwards - hungry and ready for nap ;-)

That brings us to today... was hoping for a run outside, but it looks pretty cold and windy. Since I haven't been on my bike in over a week, I'm thinking maybe a bike and run at the gym this afternoon...we'll see if it warms up, because I'd MUCH rather be outside!

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives...want to help?


FAQ's, Part 2

Yesterday, I was reminded that I forgot to answer one of the most important FAQ's that I've received...

"I really wish I could donate more - what else can I do to help support your cause?" First, let me just say that any/all support I have received is appreciated so much! I couldn't ask for a better group of family, friends, co-workers, and acquaintances! But, since you asked... here are some ways that you can continue to contribute in a non-cash way:
  • Word of mouth always makes the biggest impact... tell at least 1 person a day about what I'm doing for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I could never have imagined how many people I would encounter who have personal experience with blood cancers.

  • Do you blog? Ideas dried up? Blog about what I'm doing and link up to my blog and/or fundraising site.

  • Do you Facebook, MySpace, etc? Post a quick note and link to my site(s) on your page(s).

  • Copy the newsletter I sent you and pass it on to someone you think might want to read it.

  • Forward my "Alise is "TRI"-ing to Find A Cure!" email to anyone who you think might be interested.

  • Do you work somewhere that can donate something (a gift card, service, etc.) that I can include in a raffle or a silent auction at an upcoming event?

  • Have a special talent? Bake cupcakes to sell at work for a donation.

Thank you all for your support!

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives...want to help?




Some of the questions I've fielded over the past week or so as the topic of my upcoming triathlon has come up in conversation:

"What exactly is a triathlon?" A triathlon is an athletic endurance event consisting of three disciplines: swimming, biking, and running. The three disciplines are completed back-to-back-to-back to comprise a single event. My event is considered a Sprint distance, which equals a 1/3 mile open water swim, an 18 mile bike ride, and a 3.1 mile run.

"Can you post some pictures of you training?" Maybe you don't really believe I am doing all of this? Above is a picture of me during my 20 mile ride on the Silver Comet Trail this past Saturday. I'll try to do better and remember to get more photo ops of my training. But I can't promise that they'll be pretty to look at! ;-)

"What's your favorite sport of the 3 so far?" Lucky for me, I really enjoy all 3 - just differently. Swimming has been exhilarating, because I've learned so much and improved so much in such a short time...it truly has opened up a "whole new world" of working out for me. And, as an added benefit, I sleep like a rock after I swim! Biking, well - I've always loved riding my bike, whether it be mountain biking and now road biking. I just love the distance you can travel on a bike, and all the scenery you can take in during a ride. Finally, running... I do really enjoy running once I get going. The first 1/2 mile or so is always tough for me, but once I get past that point, I relax. I either get into my music, or a conversation with my running mates, or sometimes just my own thoughts. I always feel amazing after a good run.

"Why are you doing this?" What began as somewhat of a personal challenge has become much bigger. I am doing this to challenge myself to make a difference in the lives of others. Everyone has the opportunity to give back to society in countless ways. Today, this is my way.

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives... want to help? http://pages.teamintraining.org/ga/IronGirl09/alisejackson



OK, so just like last time around, I want to share with you who the amazing folks are who have now brought my donations up past the $1000 mark! I'm also including the state they sent me their donation from, and how long I've known them. These are listed in alphabetical order by first name - based on the newest donations posted to my TNT website as of today:

Denese A (California): Denese and Lars have been friends of my family since I'd guess 1985. Their daughter and my sister went to preschool together, and were eventual college roommates. I used to babysit for all 4 of their kids. And 2 of their sons now play in a band with my brother.

Heather S (Georgia): Another one of my fellow "boot campers" who's working out at the park with me at 5:15 am! I've known Heather for about a year, and she is the sweetest girl and so fun to hang out with. Can't wait for us all to go to Florida together in a few weeks!
James B (California): My Dad, whom I've known since my birth ;-). I have the best Dad in the world! I'm so proud of him for how much he's been working out these past several years; he could totally train for a tri (or at least a 5K run)...I AM going to get him to do some event with me, he just doesn't know it yet. I love you, Dad. (If you're wondering why I'm not giving credit to both my Mom & Dad for this donation, it's because my Mom has made it abundantly clear to me that this was my Dad's donation, and that she is going to make "her own." OK. 10-4, Mom.) ;-) Yeah, my parents rock!
Victoria B (California): My Aunt Vicki, whom I've also known since my birth. She is my Mom's sister, and the 3rd-born daughter of my grandmother Vera (my personal honored hero for this journey). Aunt Vicki also lost her husband (Uncle Bob) to cancer 9 years ago, so she has seen more than her fair share of devastation from the disease. She is so sweet and selfless, and life has blessed her with a family that she adores. I love watching her and my Mom together - they are the best of friends.

THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH FOR YOUR LOVE AND SUPPORT!!! It means the world to me and I couldn't do any of this without you!



100 Days To Go...

According to my countdown clock, my triathlon is 100 days away! Wow, time is flying by so fast! Even though I've made so much progress, 100 days feels like it will be here before I know it! So what have I been up to this week?

Monday: Workout #1 - 5:15am boot camp. The infamous "Par" workout! It's actually one of my favorites, but totally kicks my butt! One minute each of about 12 different exercises, trying to do as many as you can in 60 seconds. Short run after every 2 sets - the run is actually intended to lower your heart rate. And when you're finished? Do it all over again! Workout #2 - 1 hour swim at the gym. After 4 laps of warm-up, I spent the rest of the hour practicing my freestyle swim.

Tuesday: My Tuesday night running group kind of fell apart this week (maybe due to the fact that it was St. Patty's Day), so I just ran at Sims Lake Park. Got a bit of a late start, so did 2 miles in 20:59 before it started to get dark.

Wednesday: Workout #1 - 5:15am boot camp. Circut training; suicide sprints; lots of crunches and other ab work. Workout #2 - TEAM swim. I promoted myself up a lane, and swam freestyle the entire hour!

Today: my rest day (which only means rest from workout - as it is my evening to try to catch up on the rest of my life!

Upcoming... Friday morning boot camp, and a Saturday bike ride on the Silver Comet Trail that I'm really looking forward to!

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives! Want to help? http://pages.teamintraining.org/ga/IronGirl09/alisejackson


Donation Map

I thought it would be fun to show a map of where my donations have come in from... here are the 8 states that have supported me so far! Considering I have only lived in 2 of these states, I find this pretty impressive... :-) In my last blog, I gave thanks to my first group of supporters - now you can see them lit up in purple on the map! (Some donations are still "in transit", so if you see a state without a corresponding name yet, that's why.. ) I will do my next round of "thank you" tributes to my newest donors in a week or so - so stay tuned!

On the training front...

Tuesday: Met 2 of my TEAMmates after work for a 3 mile run. My stopwatch stopped somewhere along the way, but I estimate we ran for about 35-40 minutes.

Wednesday: Workout #1 - 5:15am boot camp - circuit training, lunges, running, ab work. Workout #2 - TEAM swim. My first time back in the pool since being sick. Took a few laps to get my breathing back under control and review my drills, but by the end of the night, I was SWIMMING for real! Starting in a couple of weeks, we will start "benchmark swims," which will measure our progress throughout the season.

Thursday: rest day. I had a root canal instead. :-\

Friday: 5:15am boot camp - 15 minutes of running; mostly lower body strength training.

Saturday: TEAM track clinic (in freezing wind and rain). It seems that so far this season, Saturday morning Group Training Sessions are synonymous with bad weather. I can only hope that this is not the case for the next 3.5 months! Ran a total of 15 laps around the track (3.75 miles) at various speeds, from 85% - 110% of "pace." Also learned some good tips from Coach Andrew about proper running technique.

Today: still cold and rainy, but I needed to get a "bike" workout in this weekend, so I opted for the stationary bike at the gym. After a brief warm-up on the treadmill, I rode for 35 minutes at a level 6 resistance, focusing mainly on keeping my cadence up in the 90 rpm range.

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives...want to help?



To The ROCKSTARS That Lifted Me To My First $500…

…and BEYOND! I want to share with you who all my fabulous donors are so far, the state they sent me their donation from, and how long I've known them (hopefully I get the dates all right!) These are listed in alphabetical order by first name - based on donations posted to my TNT website as of today:

Anthony B (Georgia): Co-worker and good friend of my husband's, whom we have known since 2002.

Darcy B (California): My little sister, whom I've known since her birth in 1981. If she still lived in New Mexico, I could add another state to my donation map… ;-)

David G (Georgia): An ex co-worker of mine that I've known since 2003. David is one of the kindest and most loyal individuals I know. Even though it's been more than 5 years since we worked together, he relayed a story to me recently that proved this quality of his.

Doris C (Idaho): An ex co-worker of mine from California that I've known since 1998. Doris retired and moved to Idaho to be near her children and grandchildren. I wish Doris was still at every job I have ever had or will have – she's a hoot!

Glenda C (Texas): An ex co-worker of mine that I've known since 2005. Glenda retired and relocated back to Texas, where she is from. I miss chatting with Glenda on a daily basis about Caribbean cruises and baseball!

Isabella W (Georgia): An ex co-worker of mine that I've known since 2006. Bella was one of the people who inspired me to join Team in Training – you see, she completed a half marathon in Alaska last year through TNT. And she is a cancer SURVIVOR herself!

James P (Georgia): My ex boss from Penske in Georgia, whom I've known since 1999. Jim and his family invited me to Easter dinner at their home when I first moved to Georgia in 2000, since I didn't have any family here to spend the day with. Jim lost his beautiful wife Karen to cancer this past September, so I know he wishes for a cure to save others from going through what his family has gone through.

Linda H (Georgia): One of my crazy fellow "boot campers" who is at the park at 5:15am every morning, in every weather imaginable, to work out. I've known Linda for about a year, and she is one of the fittest, toughest Grandmas I know!

Lori R (Georgia): A current co-worker of mine, whom I've known for about 5 months, since I started working for my current employer.

Mary R (Georgia): My current boss, whom I've known for about 5 months also.

Melody M (California): Melody and I have been friends since high school – since at least 1988(?) We still try to get together every few years when I make it out to California for a "leisurely visit." Melody has a personal connection to this cause, as she lost her grandfather to lymphoma.

Michael J (Missouri): Mike & Mary are my father-in-law and mother-in-law, whom I've known since 2002. I have them to thank for their first-born son, who is/has been my biggest supporter in this journey! J

Paula B (Ohio): Paula is the sister of my closest friend David from California. I've had the pleasure of becoming friends with Paula during her visits to California (when I still lived there), and during a shared trip to New York. I'd guess we first met in the 1997-98 time frame.

Raymond D (California): My ex boss from Penske in California, whom I have known since 1998. Ray took a chance and believed in me and gave me one of the first big breaks of my career. And then he sent me away to Georgia… ;-) Now he's retired and loving it!

Shawn L (Iowa): My cousin, who I've known since my birth in 1974. Shawn is among the 11 grandchildren of Vera, who I am completing this race in loving memory of.

Shirley G (California): My high school accounting teacher, whom I've known since 1991. Mrs. G. and her husband travel the world extensively since retiring, and I Iook forward to their photo Christmas cards every year to see them riding elephants, walking with penguins, etc!

Stephanie M (Georgia): Steph was my next door neighbor when I moved into my townhouse in 2001. We became fast friends, and she sang at my wedding. Now we live on opposite sides of town. L Stephanie is also deeply connected to this cause, as she lost her dad to lymphoma when she was only 6 years old.

Vicci B (Georgia): An ex co-worker of mine, whom I have known since 2005. I always looked forward to seeing what new shoes Vicci had on each day!

THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT!!! You are my heroes - you keep me motivated to train each day, and to push myself even farther!!


Back On The Workout Wagon!

I'm finally feeling about 85-90% better and am back on a regular workout schedule after 5 days off in a row :-( Update from the past few days:

Saturday: Workout #1 - Group "brick" at Columns Drive in Marietta. Since this was my first workout back, I trained on the lower end of my level...rode 10 miles, then ran 10 minutes. At that point I just felt lucky to have not coughed up what remained of my lungs (sorry, TMI, I know). Also got to break in my new bike and new bike shoes! Being clipped in to the pedals wasn't nearly as scary as I thought it would be!

Workout #2 - after lunch (and when the sun finally burned away the fog), rode another 6 miles on the Big Creek Greenway.

Sunday: Ran 2.5 miles at Sims Lake Park on a gorgeous 75-degree day! Time for run: 28:42. Very slow, but still trying not to relapse into another bout of illness.

Today: 5:15am bootcamp... 1 mile run in 9:13. Push ups, sit ups, upper body strength training.

Coming up for the rest of the week... running with some of my TEAMmates tomorrow night, boot camp Wednesday morning, TEAM swim Wednesday night, and boot camp Friday morning. Track clinic Saturday morning with TEAM.

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives...want to help?



Shop For A Cause!

For any of you Gap, Banana Republic, and/or Old Navy fans - I'm passing along a great coupon for you - to thank you for supporting me in my fundraising and triathlon training journey! For 4 days only, March 12-15th, the stores mentioned will:

1. Give you 30% off your in-store purchase, AND
2. Donate 5% of your purchase to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).

Everyone wins! To print out this great coupon (which you can use as many times as you want during those 4 days), click here!!!

Thanks for your support - and if you want to pass this coupon along to family/friends/co-workers, please forward my blog link, or link this post to your blog...

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives... want to help?



And The Swim Achievement Award Goes To...

Me! I'm not even kidding.

I've blogged here about my fear of the pool, my lack of swimming foundation, and my total mess of swim technique. I've also mentioned that I've been making great strides in the past 4 weeks, and that I'm getting more and more comfortable. But when my coaches were singing my praises to me privately, I thought "OK sure, they just want to keep me motivated - that's what good coaches do."

So, this morning at our Group Training Session, my swim coach gets up in front of the entire Summer Tri Team and calls me out as the recipient of the first special recognition of the season! For "Swimming Achievement!" From a lane 1 swimmer (beginner) who wouldn't open her eyes underwater to the one demonstrating proper form for the rest of the team! Yeah, she said all that.

So, what does my smokin' hot new bike helmet have to do with swimming? ;-) Well, that's the prize that I got to pick out of the bag of Team in Training loot. Sweet.

I'm "TRI"-ing to save lives! Want to help?


..But This TEAM Member Is Temporarily Knocked Down

OK, so maybe I wasn't completely over being sick. Maybe I shouldn't have run 4 miles in the rain on Saturday. Maybe I didn't need to go out in the snow and spend 2 hours in the pool on Sunday. I know. I am sick as a dog now.

Went to see the doc today and am now armed with meds and an inhaler. I haven't worked out since Sunday, and am missing TEAM swim tonight :-( I feel like I can't miss a workout (especially a group workout), but everyone keeps reminding me that my event is still nearly 4 months away, and that I have plenty of time... so I am just accepting that advice and getting as much rest as I can.

So, I apologize for the lack of exciting training updates this week, but plan to be back at it in time for a group "brick" (ride and run) on Saturday. We are expecting glorious Spring weather over the next week, and I plan to take advantage of it!



TEAM Doesn't Cancel For Snow Either!

(Got out of the pool at noon to see this outside!) Today was my highly anticipated swim clinic - 2 solid hours in the pool with a small group of 15 or so fellow teammates. The best part was that we got to swim in the WARM indoor pool for a change!!

I am feeling really comfortable in the pool and with the swim drills... the progress I am seeing with proper coaching is completely amazing to me!

So, on tonight's agenda? Surfing the internet for cycling shoes!

Please continue to visit (and feel free to pass along) my TNT website: