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Monday, March 29, 2010

"WeeMart Route"

The Weekend Wrap-up

Saturday morning was a 1:45 run at Seabrook trails. Not sure why I never noticed it before, but this made me laugh... and run faster. :)

Later that day we celebrated Hub's birthday.  I love this time of year, he's only a *year* younger than me, until my birthday in November.  Cookout, cake, ice cream and friends.  Good times.

Sunday was my long ride... 25 mph gusts.  Went out with one of my tri club friends and got my 3:30 of riding in. :)  I did take a spill on my bike, but I'm fine.  It was due.  I had not fallen on my new bike yet, so at least it is done and out of the way!

I made this Quinoa Primavera with Chicken.  It was good.  I cooked the Quinoa in Chicken broth.  Would be good with some Lemon and fresh Parmesean too!


26 days until Lonestar. 



Do something nice...

Please vote for one of my favorite bloggin' peeps, Michelle (aka Eggface).  She entered a contest via Progresso Soups for a makeover and all expense paid trip to NYC and she's one of the 10 finalists!

Vote for her today...and everyday, until she wins!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Hyperprolactinaemia

I don't even want to imagine what kind of weight I could be gaining if I wasn't training like I am!

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Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 1998 May;48(5):547-53.

Increased body weight associated with prolactin secreting pituitary adenomas:
weight loss with normalization of prolactin levels.

Greenman Y, Tordjman K, Stern N.
Institute of Endocrinology, Tel Aviv-Elias Sourasky Medical Center, Israel.
Comment in:  Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 1999 Feb;50(2):271.

OBJECTIVE: Hyperprolactinaemia in humans may be associated with a high prevalence of obesity but the nature of this link is poorly defined. The aim of this study was to establish the relationship between hyperprolactinaemia and body weight in patients with prolactin-secreting pituitary tumours. DESIGN: We conducted a retrospective study of prolactinoma patients treated at the Endocrine Institute of the Tel Aviv Medical Center, Israel, during the period 1989-1996. Patients with clinically non-functioning pituitary macroadenomas (NFA) served as the control group. Data on demographic parameters, body weight before and during treatment, clinical presentation including history of weight fluctuations, tumour size as measured by computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging, modalities and response to treatment, and pituitary function before and during treatment were recorded from medical files. PATIENTS: Forty-two patients with prolactinomas (PR) and 36 patients with clinically non-functioning macroadenomas (NFA) comprised the study population. RESULTS: Mean weight was 93 +/- 3.4 kg and 78 +/- 2.7 kg in male patients with PR and NFA respectively (P = 0.0007). Recent weight gain (8 to 22 kg) was a presenting symptom in 13 PR patients, whereas only one NFA patient had this clinical presentation (P = 0.001). Seventeen PR patients lost weight (mean change -8.3 +/- 1.5 kg, range -2-28 kg), during prolactin lowering therapy, 11 of whom had entirely normalized prolactin levels. Fourteen of the 18 patients who did not lose weight still had elevated prolactin levels (P = 0.01). Weight loss in patients with PR could not be attributed to altered pituitary function nor to compression of the third ventricle. In contrast to PR, no significant weight loss was observed in NFA patients. CONCLUSION: Weight gain and elevated body weight are frequently associated with prolactinomas regardless of a mass effect on the hypothalamus or pituitary function. In this series, weight loss was recorded in 70% of prolactinomas patients and in 90% of male patients who normalized their prolactin levels. We propose the inclusion of hyperprolactinaemia in the differential diagnosis of endocrine obesity and weight gain.

Blah, Blah, Blah...

29 Days until Lonestar.  Less than a month.  I am excited, but also looking forward to slowing down for a little while after.  Having started training the week of Christmas, it's been a long haul not just for me, but for my family as well. 

In the midst of all the training, of course I'm still dealing with the medical stuff.  I had a visit with the doc yesterday and got some new info.  So, my thyroid has actually been good for about 12 weeks now!  That was great news.  Unfortunately though I still feel like kah-kah. 

So, as it turns out, there is a reason.  When I first went to the doc, my prolactin levels were high. Often that's associated with the thyroid issues.  So in order to determine why the Prolactin was high, he had to get my thyroid function right.  So, now that the thyroid is right, he knows something is up with my Prolactin.  We took blood yesterday and if my Estrogen is low and Prolactin is high, I'll probably have to go for an Ultrasound on my pituitary glad.  30% of elevated Prolactin levels are as a result of a benign tumor on the gland.

Having elevated Prolactin levels is like living with PMS everyday.  So not only am I fatigued and stressed with work and training, but I am also experiencing a general yucky-funk day in and day out.  Nice, huh?

The good thing is, we know it's not my Thyroid, and that's how I'm choosing to look at it.  :)

Training has been a particular challenge this week with scheduling, weather, work... and all-around logistical nightmare. 

I also had another sensitive situation to deal with and for a day it just made me sick to my stomach.  I had to give some bad news/constructive criticism to a friend.  It's a shame I had to do it, but it was for both our best interests... I'm only concerned it wasn't taken personally.  Ugh.

That's about it.  Open Water Swim with my stuffed-like-a-sausage wetsuit, run/swim tomorrow and bike and Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday... busy weekend.  Somehow, between it all, laundry and domestic goddessing has to get done!

Friday Fill Ins

 And...here we go!

1. The right word often escapes me.
2. I'm trying to nap... go downstairs and shut the door quietly, please.
3. Up YOURS! (I know.. but it's what came to mind first)
4. These days, swimming, biking or running is where you'll find me.
5. Ooh! What is that, something sparkly?
6. Well, at first we thought it a good idea.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to finishing an open-water swim, tomorrow my plans include running and swimming (what else?) and Sunday, I want to take Cassie to an Easter Egg Hunt!

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Join in the fun!  Do your own Friday Fill♥In!

Thursday ♥ Thirteen


  

13 Truisms about training

1) Sometimes you find yourself defending your training efforts to others. Sometimes it's annoying... "But you're only doing on Olympic, why are you [insert sport here] so long?" It's not just physical training, it's mental training too.

2) "Buttsy" still said it best... 100% effort is relative. 100% today, may not be 100% after a few days rest. I always remember it.

3) The power of positive thinking is not malarchy. It's working.

4) If you put in the time, you will see results. This is fact.

5) Having that stupid little box on my schedule telling me what I need to do training-wise for a given day, has more power over me than Blue Bell Ice Cream. If I don't complete what's in that box, I feel less than successful.

6) I've learned hate failure, not fear it.

7) The only way to perform consistently is to be plan and be prepared. This is not only for training though -- I find this to be true of many facets of life.

8) Just because someone is educated and experienced, doesn't mean their way is the only way. It's okay to try new approaches. Everyone's needs are different.

9) Wetsuits are the bomb-diggity. I love how bouyant I feel! LOL

10) Learning to love the wind, while harder to do than hating it, pays off. Try bike training on the Gulf Coast someday... No matter which way you turn, there it is... the wind.

11) "Swimming is like vegetables... you can never do too much." SSSC

12) Being as much as 3% to 5% dehydrated can affect performance as much as 15%. I had no clue!

13) There is always something to be learned from even the worst of workouts.

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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

I Made It: Roasted Stuffed Salmon



It looks good and smells good.  The stuffing tastes good! I'l have to report back tonight, but some friends didn't believe I was so Betty Crockeresque! 

Serves 6 to 8
Salmon fillet stuffed with spinach, ricotta and feta cheese and flavored with Dijon mustard, fresh dill and oregano makes for a scrumptious holiday meal and impressive presentation. For seafood lovers, this savory roast promises to be the start of a new holiday tradition.

Ingredients
1 (2-pound) center-cut boneless, skinless salmon fillet
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 cup packed baby spinach, divided
Extra virgin olive oil
Chopped dill
Chopped oregano

Method
Preheat oven to 450°F.

Butterfly salmon fillet through the center so that it lays open flat in one large piece like a book. Turn salmon over so gray underside is facing up and arrange on a clean work surface. In a bowl, mash together ricotta and feta until well blended then season with salt and pepper.

Season salmon with salt and pepper then spread fillet with mustard and arrange half of the spinach over the top, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Evenly spread cheese mixture on top of spinach then top with remaining spinach. Starting from one of the long sides, gently roll up salmon and tie snugly with cooking twine at 1-inch intervals.

Gently transfer salmon to a greased baking sheet then brush top and sides with oil and season outside with salt and pepper. Scatter dill and oregano over the top and sides and roast until just cooked through, about 20 minutes. Set aside to let rest for 5 minutes then carefully transfer to a serving platter, remove and discard twine and serve.

Nutrition
Per serving (about 6oz/180g-wt.): 340 calories (180 from fat), 20g total fat, 8g saturated fat, 120mg cholesterol, 560mg sodium, 3g total carbohydrate (0g dietary fiber, 1g sugar), 36g protein

I Made It! Beef and Quinoa Meatballs


Found this recipe at Whole Foods dot com.  I've been looking for recipes to integrate Quinoa, an awesome complex carb great for fueling activity!  I have been meaning to make this and did today, so we'd have them for the week.  The meatballs get approval from both me and Hubs!

I made the recipe and it made 24 LARGE meatballs -- could have easily made 30 - 35 smaller ones.

Next time I will try using ground turkey, or even ground chicken. 

Ingredients
Nonstick cooking spray
1 pound (95-percent) lean ground beef
3/4 cup cooked quinoa
1/4 cup finely chopped onions
1/4 cup grated carrots
1/4 cup grated zucchini
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 egg


Method
Preheat oven to 500°F. Line a large baking sheet with foil then grease with cooking spray; set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together beef, quinoa, onions, carrots, zucchini, ketchup, garlic, soy sauce, pepper, salt, oregano, thyme and egg until well combined. Shape beef mixture into 16 balls and transfer to prepared baking sheet. Roast until cooked through and golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Serve hot.

(Note: To cook quinoa, bring 1 cup water to a boil in a small pot. Pour in ½ cup quinoa, cover and simmer until water is absorbed, 10 to 12 minutes. Set aside off of the heat for 10 minutes then fluff with a fork. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.)

Nutrition
Per serving (about 4oz/113g-wt.): 150 calories (45 from fat), 5g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 75mg cholesterol, 470mg sodium, 8g total carbohydrate (1g dietary fiber, 2g sugar), 17g protein

"Crazy Brick" Training Survived!

On Friday I had a "crazy brick" training session scehduled.  It was a recovery week for me, so I was supposed to be rested. This "sim" is supposed to give some indication of what you'll do race day. Race day. is about 6 weeks away.

It covers everything from A to Z.  You have to plan your strategy and nutrition.  I did both.  Managed to drink 240 calories an hour and kept my heartrate in my target ranges. 

I departed from my ride from the High School's track, since that's where I had to be immediately following the ride.

It started with a 1:30 bike ride at a Half Ironman pace, then :30 at my Olympic pace.  There was tons of wind -- my overall average was 16.4.  I had a nice tailwind (finally!) the last  couple miles in and was able to average 17 mph the last 30 minutes, which helped to  bring up my windy 15.9 mph average  for the first 1:30.  I felt good and strong in the wind.  I am still surprised at how differently I feel on the bike.  It's a good feeling to know that the effort I'm putting in is paying off.

Once the ride was done it was a quick transition to running and I hit the track with 1 mile repeats.  I was tired, but pulled them out.  Not real fast times for seasoned runners, but 13:22, 13:40 and 13:09, after the bike, for me is progress.  I'm completely happy with that as I think that with tapering I could keep it around 13:00.  Would love to see sub 13:00 -- but who knows?

In any case, I was happy I felt "spent" (because that was the idea) and happy that I was done!  I had a great day... 70 degrees and sunny with some windy gusts up to 15 mph.

What I didn't mention, the source of some after-brick "excitement", was the night before I was distracted while taking my meds and giving my Daughter a shower.  Instead of taking a prescription allergy pill, I accientally took anothger 100 mcg of Levoxyl, my thyroid med that I take once a day in the AM.  So I double-dosed. I just wasn't paying attention.  I have no real good excuse.

By the time I realized what I had done the pill was in my throat and it was too late,  Shit!

I tried not to worry too much and went to bed.  I woke up fine the next day and of course skipped my morning dose, consdiering what I had done the night before.  I paid attention to my body and everything seemed fine, so I decided to to my brick anyway.  After all, I had taken a vacation day from work to get it all in!

I was completely fine the entire ride and run.  After I finished the run, I walked about 50 meters and headed back to my coach and friends who were there rooting me on and said, "I'm running to the car, be right back."

I got about 50 meters away and my heart was in my throat... as in crazy beating.  Max heart rate for my age is 177.  I looked at my Garmin and it was 213!  I couldn't inhale!  I couldn't talk.  I was a little worried.  I tried to calm down and thought, "I can walk to my car and fall-out there where no one can see me, or I can go back to where they are."

I went back to them, but couldn't talk.  I repeatedly pointed to the heart rate on my watch and then to my heart.  I tried walking slowly just to get it down.  Finally after sitting for about 10 minutes it came back down, but it gave everyone a scare.

Ironically enough when I left to ride that morning I took my license, debit card AND my health insurance card!

This happened only one time before, when I first went on the meds and we were trying to regulate them, but it's so strange how it happened AFTER everything, and not during.  Exciting, huh?

Anyway, I had to rearrange my schedule bunches this week to get everything in, so today my co-athletes (the others being trained by the same coaches are doing their brick today).  It's 37 degrees out with 25 mph gusts of wind.  I'm soooooo glad I got mine done.  I even got sunburned!  LOL  If they're still going to do theirs, I'm going to head out to the track and support them.  :)

Open Water Swim *eeek*

On Thursday morning I had an open water swim on my schedule 3 laps... slow, medium and fast.  I've been to this lake before; swam there countless times this last Summer.  I have no idea why I was so nervous getting in.  It took me 15 minutes to get up the courage to take the plunge. 

I finally did.   :)

Lap times were so-so, but I was having some problems stretching out my stroke.  I don't think I had my wetsuit up all the way, where it needed to be, on my shoulders.  I was warm and bouyant though, so the wetsuit did it's part!  So bouyant that I barely kicked the first lap!  Each subsequent lap decreased and I'm sure I'll get better over time. 

Something about not being able to see through the water freaks me out a little bit and I have to practice resisting the urge to come up out of the water, other than to sight, so much. 

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Great Escape Ride Report

I'm a little late with posting this ride report, but really it wasn't much.  That kind of makes me laugh because it was a marker of progress for me in so many ways.

It was a nice day... a little windy, but not terrible, and cool enough to be comfortable.  We had about a half dozen BAM! members show up for the ride too, so it was nice to have other folks there.

The ride was pretty uneventful, other than the super  porta-potty lines at stop 2 (I always pass the first stop).  I felt really good during the ride.  I ate and hydrated as needed and everything *worked*.

We had about a half dozen club members there, so it was nice to see everyone and ride with them, even if just for a short time. 

So the marker of progress for me is this:  Last year I did the 62 mile route of the Space Race.  It started at 8am and took me until nearly 2pm to finish.  This year I did 55.8 miles in 3:18 -- I was done before Noon and averaged 17 mph!  Huge, huge, huge improvement for me!

Winter mad spin paid off for me!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Bizzy, Bizzy, Bizzy...

Things are rolling a long. Been been busy with training work and home. 

On the training front 2 things happened this week.  We've shortened my swim intervals for my 100's (a sign that I'm getting faster or that we grossly miscalculated my itnerval time in the beginning) and I had my 2nd bike time trial this week and improved my average speed by 2 mph (doing 18.7), while dropping my average heart-rate (a sign of improved fitness) and increasing the ability to work harder, as evidenced by my max heart rate.  In any case, all good news.  There's really about 4 weeks more left of training then the tapering begins!  :)

Work is work.  I'm so disenchanted with IT after 20 years.  I know it's not a newsflash. 

My BFF did the sweetest thing for me this week.  She knows how I loves all things leather metallic and my friends at Coach came out with a new bag that I totally ♥.  Anyway, BFF went totally overboard and bought me the matching wallet.  She said she wanted "to add a little bling to my life."  It was such a sweet and thoughtful surprise. : )  I gotz me some good frendz!

Tonight Hubs and I are headed to the Rodeo -- we're going to see Toby Keith. 

Tomorrow I have a long run 2:15, and a swim clinic.  I get to be video'd and everyone gets to watch my sloppy stroke!  LOL

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Thursday ♦ Thirteen


My Thursday 13 -- Prompted by a book I just received and started reading called "The Mind Gym" An Athlete's Guide to Inner Excellence and to promote from within the fact that I don't suck, am not weak, and have the wherewithall to achieve my goals, here's 13 things I need to keep in my noggin' during training and racing.

1) I am strong.
2) I am effin' fit!
3) I always "Finish" what I start
4) I am committed to my training; I am improving everyday.
5) Keep focus on the current task; be present. Don't let negative thoughts enter your mind.
6) Recall successes and remember how success feels.
7) I trust my training will prepare me for reaching my goals.
8) "Enthusiasm and mental edge are the keys to winning."
9) "Under pressure you can perform 15% better or 15% worse"
10)"When you have fun it changes all the pressure into pleausre"
11)"Learn to view pressure as a challenge to meet rather than a threat of defeat"
12) I cannot be afraid to fail, just as I cannot be afraid to succeed.
13)"You cannot outperform your self image"
  
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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Weekend

This past weekend was a great weekend of training.  :)

My long run on Satuday was 1:45.  I realized towards the end of the run that I might make 8 miles and I got excited.  So the last 1.5 miles of my run were a little harder than a "long slow" pace, but whatever, I needed to have a small victory.  So, 8.01 miles in 1:45 for a 13:04 pace. 

Not only that but I felt good.  I didn't feel that good during the half marathon.  I really felt like I had moments where I was just in a groove and that it was almost effortless.  Of course it wasn't, but at times felt, dare I say, comfortable.

Anway, a good run!

On Sunday we had a 3 hour spin class.  I felt like I did well, consdiering my run the day before and was strong the whole class.  We headed to the pool right after and it hit me.  I had nothing left.  It was so surprising to me how I came off the bike feeling so strong, but when I hit the water for some intervals, I felt more like the water punched me back!  Let's just say I'm grateful my pain and suffering only lasted :45 minutes.  :)

I was supposed to be off yesterday, but my legs were still super sore.  I decided to go for an easy recovery swim because I really needed it. 

Today I'm taking off though -- going to the Rodeo with my family to a concert tonight.  I am having to completely rearrange my schedule to fit everything in, so it will be a challenging week.

8 weeks until Lonestar! 

"I really suck at __________."

I was blog surfing this morning and came across this.  I'm so guilty of habit. 

"I'm not good at ________"
"I really suck at __________"
"I'd do well if I were only better at ________"

The truth is that yes, some people are really gifted and talented and don't have to work hard for some things, but the majority of us have to work hard for what we want. To be successful at anything, the most important thing you will ever train is your mind. Here's a great place to start:

Instead of saying, "I'm not good at swimming (running, golfing, biking, etc)."

Say: "I haven't reached my potential yet." or "I'm on the way to reaching my potential."

Doesn't it sound much more positive and empowering?