Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Race Pace swim and a Cup Cake

I think my favorite thing about blogging is that you can take info from other people's blog! I'm a huge fan on Simon Whitfield's training crew under the guidence of Joel. Simon stayed with my family back in 2003 and 2004 and I have been a huge fan of him and his team ever since. I have started to read the blog of Paul Tichelaar's more after all his strong performances so far this year. So the workout today was what Paul had done the other day.

w/u > 200s,100k,200p
main set > x2 (10x100 on 1:40)
Total > 2,500 meters

I was holding 1:10-1:11 the entire time and it felt solid. I find when I try and push the pace harder my form gets sloppy and I end up going slower. So from 14 and on I slowed my stoke count, took two strokes off per length and went faster!

Arrived home to a beautiful chocolate cupcake with cream cheese frosting and sprinkles from my beautiful wife. This will fuel me for my last workout today which will be a race pace brick set that should feel pretty good.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Last Long Run

Wildflower is less then a week away and today was my last solid long run. We were hit this morning with yet another showcase of natures fury. I woke up this morning to a constant flashing light. I rolled over thinking it was my phone only to discover we had another thunderstorm rolling through. We had strong wind gusts, heavy rain, hail, and a beatiful lighnting show all with in the hour! It was awesome. The weather was not ideal for outside so the wife and I headed to Lifetime Fitness for a 60 minute run on the tready. The work out was was to get my body use to the pace I HOPE to run. It felt pretty good today.

w/p > 10 min
set 1 > 20 min at 10.0mph (6min mile)
set 2 > 25 min at 10.7mph (5:40 min mile)
w/d > 05 min

I will confess something here that I'm a little embarrassed to admit. I was listening to the ipod on the run today and there was a song I listened to that I hate to love.
What is it you ask? See you again by.....Miley Cirus! The ipod is my wife's, not mine just to clarify. I can't get the bloody song out of my head.

James' Favorite Meal of the Month

One night I was thinking of way to get rid of the rest of our whole wheat penne pasta and our can of organic vegetarian refried beans. I ended up making a dish that James LOVED and now requests quite often. Of course its Mexican. Its a very healthy Mexican pasta casserole. Here's the recipe.

1. 1 package of whole wheat penne pasta
2. 1 can organic corn, drained.
3. 1 can low fat refried beans
4. couple hand fulls of shredded veggie pepper jack cheese
5. diced tomatoes and green chilies
6. 1/2 package of taco seasoning (medium to spicy)
7. salsa to add on top (after baking)

So basically you cook the pasta then add in the corn, tomatoes, chilies, seasoning,and little bit of cheese. Spread over a casserole dish then spread the refried beans on top and then the rest of the cheese on top. Bake until cheese is melted and corners are browned a little. Maybe 20-30 minutes max at 350 degrees. I just kept checking to see if the dish had set and the cheese wasn't over cooked. Also, you can add in black beans and chicken/lean beef for extra protein and spinach for a little immunity boost! This is a great dish to make in bulk and to snack on through the week. Its light but with the right amount of carbs and protein. Just go easy on the cheese or switch to veggie cheese if you are trying to keep race weight.
Let me know if anyone tries it out!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

The Big One

Catching a Big One!

It's always a nice surprise when you see all your hard work and dedication finally paying off. My dog has looked for several months for this bone and she finally found it last night in our jungle of a backyard. Just look at those eyes, how can one resist to let her have it!
On the other hand, James' hard work has started to progress more as a professional in the triathlon world! He's landed some great new sponsors and is looking and feeling strong for Wild Flower. More to come on this topic later from JP. For now, eat your fruits and veggies!
Signing off,

Friday, April 25, 2008

Solid Swim

Have been working hard on getting my swim up to a higher standard as I have been off my game some the past few seasons. I started off as a triathlete but favored swimming and worked on this discipline the most when I first moved to Hawaii. Ever since I moved away I have not been in the pool nearly as much, but with some help from a buddy in Hawaii I have been putting in 3,500m pretty consistently the past two weeks. It's not much but it sure beats the 1,500m I use to put in two days a week!

Yesterday (25m short course pool)
w/u 500S,200k,300p
set1 5x200 on 2:40 holding 2:30
set2 12x100 (1-4 on 1:20 holding 1:15,5-8 on 1:30 holding 1:09,9-12 on 1:45 whatever was left in the tank
6x50 Hard
100 cool down

after the swim I went into a 1.25hr run on the hills of my neighbourhood.

600 breath every 6th stroke
500 breath every 5th stroke
this went down to 100

The breath control sets have been SO hard but when I go back to my normal pattern of breathing every two strokes I feel like I have so much more oxygen. It is pretty neat when you start feeling stronger and going faster.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Taco Tuesday

This is my husbands favorite day of the week. Not because he has a torteous trainer ride and run but because it is followed up by some good tasting (and healthy) tacos, hence the name TACO TUESDAY. I like to switch things up each week as far as what filling goes in the tacos but for now, here is my base.
1. Spelt, white, or yellow corn tortillas
2. Veggie pepper jack cheese (Whole Foods carry brands that melt well)
3. fresh salsa
4. fresh avocado

Now depending on how James' training is going I will add in different meats. If I see he is tired and needs more Iron then I add some lean sirloin strips or ground meat. If he wants something lighter to keep at race weight I opt for egg whites or grilled chicken. If you really want some good flavor, grill the chicken in balsamic vinegar and light Italian dressing. Tonight I will make breakfast tacos using half brown eggs and egg whites (good source of omega 3's), brown rice (high in manganese which allows energy production from carbohydrate and protein), and some black beans (extra potassium and protein). YUM! I'll try to get some pics of James' scarfing his face, ha!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Yesterday hurt

Yesterday I had a 90 minute run and I decided to throw in a 10 mile tempo section holding 5:50-6:00 minute miles.

I had Lindsay configure the garmin so I could make sure I was not going too fast or too slow. We forgot to turn the audible beep on for in and out of my time zone and that was the first problem. Second problem was that I was not in a great mood. I can't remember why, but i was not happy. I started off under mopac and went in my normal clockwise direction and I went out way too fast for 10 miles. I went out holding a 5:10 pace for the first two miles and had to slow it down. Pretty much after that I knew the run was going to be very difficult. I found a rhythm and just hung on for dear life as my pace was fluctuating between a 5:35 and 6:10 pace. The problem with the garmin is just like the problem you face with heart rate monitors and that is the lag time. I would see 6:10 and I would pick it up and I would see the pace slowly dropping and then all the sudden I'm running 6:10. My pace looked like a profile of a stage in the alps of the Tour. When I had two miles remaining I realized i had to gun it to get under 60 minutes for the ten miles.

There was a Bob Marley concert going on at the shore and the day just happened to be 4/20. Here i am gunning it at 5:20 miles (yes I held them to the end) trying to get as much air into my lungs and all I smell is weed. It was horrible passing my the concert.

I arrived back just in 58 high and was hurting. Happy to go sub 60 with Wildflower coming. Look forward to some nutrition info from Lindsay to come in the near future.

Sunday, April 20, 2008


It's official! I finally get to add my comments to the Cotter Blog. Yes, this is Mrs. Cotter reporting and the newest addition of the blog page. As a devoted wife and Nutritionist to a pro triathlete, I will be posting my nutrition tips and random thoughts on James' triathlon training. Stayed tuned as I might even give out my secret recipes that will help get any triathlete to race weight (in a healthy way) pronto! No worries, they are edible and even quite delicious as James would quote!
Signing out,
L Cotter


Big shout to my training partner Tim Marr who placed third overall in Ironman China. Tim threw down the fastest bike split of the day in 4:45:03

Congrats buddy!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Long Day

Today was my first specific HIM training day leading up to Wildflower as it took a little longer then expected to recover from the past two weeks of training. I have spent every night in bath...with ice and have been on TP massage ball product whenever I can. My knee has been very sore since Dallas. I think the pavement, lack of running miles, and poor flexibility were the culprits for the pain. Been grimacing on the quad roller killing my IT Band hoping to get back into some fast quality runs.

The ride today was 4 hours followed by a 45 minute run. I can't even remember the last time I was on my bike for four hours. I thought it would be nice to start with the ATC ride and just branch off which I did, but man, I had a hard time staying with the pack today. I ended up off the back which was probably a good thing as the ride was supposed to be L2 with a few 30 minute L3 efforts. Once by myself I felt great! Normally I fall off the power after three hours, however, today I held on even after all the climbing I put in. The run was what I was most concerned about as I freak out if I can't run. Felt good the entire way and will be ready to tackle a 90 minute run with a 10 mile tempo performed in the workout tomorrow morning.

Consumption during workout:
x2 Bottles of Accelerade
x2 Sprite
x1 Coke
x1 Gatorade
x3 Accelerade Gel
x1 Slice of Pizza (after completion)

I tend to get rather thirsty when I ride. I also have a high sweat rate.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Weekend Report

Picture is from the pro Q & A. L to R Marsh, myself, Justin

My workhorse, my trusty Toyota has begun to fail on me. Last week I had to put her under the knife for some major brake surgery. The cost of the repair had me looking for last minutes races two days after I arrived home from Hawaii. Turns out Dallas was hosting a race with a 1000 dollar pursue. First takes home a grand and second takes home 700 dollars. I e-mailed the director and secured myself a spot into the race. I thought I was in for the money until I found out Brandon Marsh was also in the race!

Race morning came upon us and i was ready to go. I swam with Marsh, I biked with Marsh and boy did he bike! He is on a Scott Plasma and he looks dialed in. I was just hanging on in his wake. I was clean though and reaping no benefits :) I finally became close enough to take a pull and then Marsh was having none of that and retook the lead! We jumped off the bikes and began the run together. Now my running has been strong and after the first loop I was 100% sure I was going to be able to take him in the sprint to the line. We both knew it was going to come down the sprint. Mile 6 goes by, mile 7 goes by, mile 8 goes by and then it happened around mile 9 or 10. At the aid station I missed the water I desperately needed and had to go back for the water. Marsh saw this and took off. I thought I could catch him, but he was moving! My legs cracked and all I could do was watch him take the victory. Here I was so confident of my victory and it was taken from me. Marsh was the stronger man on the day and I look forward to future battles. Marsh, you have now officially become my new rival. Brandon's wife, Amy, destroyed the woman's field making it the fittest couple award. Congrats to Brandon and Amy!

Justin Daerr was racing in Dallas and i was able to finally meet him. Great guy by the way. What all will proabably never know is that a child ran out in front of Justin aduring the race. Justin stopped made sure the child was okay, then began riding again. He still closed a big gap to a smaller gap after attending to the needs of a child. Top notch guy. Justin had mentioned in the pro q and a was that once you lose focus it can mean the difference between losing and winning. My losing focus from the race caused me lose Marsh. I lost my rhythm and began an onslaught of negative thoughts. Race done. Not taking anything from Marsh, because I couldn't catch him at all. Just a thought on how important it is to stay mentally strong. They say training in 90% physical and 10% mental; however, racing is 90% mental and 10% physical.

Good news is that I made the money to pay for my car. Bad news is that I am about to take an ice bath to recover for the training that comes tomorrow.


Saturday, April 5, 2008

Solid day

Yesterday I had the first race of the season in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. It was the 11th annual Lavaman triathlon and was one of the first triathlons I ever won!
This race has grown from a small local race with 300 athletes to 800 plus this year. It is a beautiful race held up north on the hilton wikola grounds and attracts a quality field of Hawaii's best (Tim Marr, John Flanagan, Bree Wee, Luis D, McCarey) along with strong a Canadian squad with the presence of the Lifesport team.

I had the pleasure of being racked near superstar Bree Wee from Kona, and Tim Marr from Honolulu. Both dominate the Hawaii race scene. Bree just returned from a training camp down in Australia with a bunch of gals from Lifesport and was looking really good and her results showed the form she is in.

The swim was solid, but not fast at all as I sat on Tim's feet and he sat on Jessica Kirkwood's feet. Tim and I were very lazy and this really stood out on the result sheet as we were down by two minutes on John Flangan who had started in a wave five minutes behind us! Once on the bike Tim pushed the pace and I only managed to close the gap up some 5 miles out from the finish. It was the bike were we made up from our less then stellar swim time. Once on the run I started to pull away from Mr. Marr as he has been training for Ironman China which is in two weeks. I was the one with the faster leg turn over on race day and managed to open up a three minute gap and cruise home the last mile to take the win.

Huge thanks to Gerry Rott, Laura D, and Lindsay Cotter for putting on a great race! With all the problems they faced in the days leading up to the race, with ATA (official sponsor) and Aloha going under and numerous other issues, they sure turned problems into success yesterday. I am very glad to be an athlete as being a director takes so much more work then most athletes will realize.

Next up will be the Wildflower triathlon in May. I will have to bump up my biking endurance for this race and I have been having some trouble with rides over two hours!

Off to enjoy my last day in Hawaii before i head back to reality.

Friday, April 4, 2008

The Big Island

There is something very special about the island of Hawaii. Walking off the plane yesterday I was so happy to be back to place I used to call home. There is such a feeling of peace and calm (until you hit the HWY) here and your body rids itself of all the build up stresses from the mainland.

I woke up this morning and jumped in my ride to head down to swim practice. Walked into a pool packed with superstars: Coach Steve, Bree Wee (looking fit as ever after here trip down under), Paul Reginsberg from lifesport, and Mike McCarey. Of course it took me forever to get in the water but ended up swimming a solid 2,000. Makes a world of difference swimming with a squad rather then yourself.

Off to take nap as I am struggling some with the time change.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Getting pumped

Had a 2km swim today that was all easy with except for a solid 3x100m on a 1:15 send off to get the body ready for race pace. Felt really nice and long on the 100s and hope to have 1:15 as my base send off shortly as Wildflower is approaching soon after Lavaman.

Took the dog with me for a solid run around the hilly block this afternoon. Sadie has not been too pleased with me as I have to leave her locked up for long periods of time. When I come home at 21:00 I dont have time to play and she wants to. She was very happy to be running with me today. After a solid 5 miles at 6:30 pace I dropped the dog off for a one mile effort at moderate side of hard. Knocked off a mile time I was very happy with and felt awesome. I really wanted to go back and see how much lower I could make the split but called it and went inside.

Off to Hawaii on Thursday morning.