Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Guest Post: THE John Hirsch of Strong Like Bull Training Camp

Last 2 Spots for SLB

Posted on December 21st, 2010 by John

We are down to 2 spots for SLB. Go to www.stronglikebulltraining.com for all the info. Check out www.ironmanbobby.com for a rad video of the 2010 camp.

The dates are: 2.9.11-2.18.11

The price: $1125 for everything but airfare (food, housing, van support on all training rides, transportation within Spain, guides, coaching, bike mechanic)

15 seriously awesome training partners.

Email: info@stronglikebulltraining.com to get one of the last spots!

So ask yourself... Would you rather train here this winter?



Monday, December 20, 2010

The Story of the Cursed Bad Luck Shirt

It's the shirt I kept as a souvenir when I crashed my first race (Ridgefield Tri).

Then, one day, I decided to wear it for a run. I slipped in icy leaves, smashed my face, and got a nice concussion. That's when I started wondering about the Bad Luck Shirt's powers. This event has left the shirt with permanent dirt mark stains from the fall. You can see them if you look closely at the photo.

This morning, I was in the mood to do the long-sleeved-tee-under-the-short-sleeved-tee thing. Its comfy. I'm still sick. The first shirt I grabbed was the shirt of luck that is bad, not good. I thought for a minute and said "nah, I'm being silly, its just a shirt. It can't have powers". So I wore it.

As I was cooking the Soup of the Sick People, that I blogged about yesterday, I cried so hard over an onion that the tears made me drop my cutting board along with all of the chopped onion. I cleaned it up and didn't even make the connection. THEN, I put some soup in a container to bring with me. Double sized because it would be lunch and dinner. That's when it happened. My soup EXPLODED in my bag while I was on the subway and RUINED the following items:

-a check in a stamped envelope to be mailed out today
-my checkbook
-my hands free headset
-the book I am currently enjoying
-my wallet
-and my ipod got covered too, but I might have saved that

I'm out for the rest of the day, with only this shirt to wear. Please pray to your god(s) for me.
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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Waahhh... I have a cold :O

I haven't been sick with a cold in over a year. I'm always so proud of myself that I make efforts to AVOID getting sick, rather than just treat the sickness when it comes. I've succeeded at that for quite awhile now. But this time I have been defeated. I woke up this morning sneezing, runny nose and with a scratchy throat. I also have the lovely chills and spacey feeling. But whatever, I am gonna punch this cold in the face and kick it where it counts. Here's how:

1) On the first day, with the first signs of a cold, shut life off asap. Go home after work, only do what you have to do, cancel plans with friends (why get them sick too? Unless they're the one who got you sick, then you should make out with them for proper revenge). GO HOME and get your infected butt off the streets. The athletes out there will hate you if you don't go home and get away from them.

2) Take a eucalyptus bath. Make it hot, sweat it out. Suffer. DO NOT take medicine to dry up your sinuses or lower a fever below 100.3. Your body is getting rid of your cold, I don't recommend meddling with that. You can take medicine to get through a night of sleep if you absolutely can't miss work the next day. If you can miss work and shut down, do it! A day of rest now will save you 3 days missing work if this turns into an infection in your lungs. IF you HAVE to go to work, take medicine to get you through. When you are able to shut down, SUFFER. It heals you. Cough, sneeze, snot, fever... They are on your side to get you better.

3) Make soup with the following ingredients:

-chicken or veggie stock or broth
-onions (boiled in the soup, not sauteed)
-as much garlic as you can stand
-leafy greens
-protein optional (try beans, chicken, tempeh, etc)
-grain if you're hungry, though a proper cold will decrease your appetite so that your body isn't focused on digestion while its trying to heal at alarming rates.

4) Sleep is free medicine. Seriously? How many times do I have to tell you that? Stressed? Take a nap. Headache? Take a nap. Sick? Take a nap. Cranky? Go to bed. TIRED? Don't socialize, sleep.

5) Say, I can't do that. My life is too hectic. Then go to step 1 and start over, doing it right this time. All the while, repeating over and over to yourself "she was totally right".

(Photo: We decorated our tree last night with construction paper ornaments!)

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Cross is...

I did my first cyclocross race! I can't believe I forgot to blog about this! AAAAHHHH!!!

When I first got into tri, I hadn't spent any time on a road bike. I had a lot to learn. But I started to put the hours in and the miles underneath me by bringing my bike everywhere I went. One day, I was driving with my dad in Amesbury, MA and I saw the craziest thing! "What the heck ARE THEY DOING???" So we stopped to watch and my dad and I both thought it was totally rad that they were riding all over the grass then picking up their bikes and jumping over things. My dad said "when ya gonna staht doin' that?" (He has a wicked Boston accent). I said "I bet I could do that".

Then, Jamie Bull did one and posted photos on his blog. I was all over him with questions. (Btw, congrats on your engagement, Sam and Jamie! I knew that one was coming). Jamie told me I would totally love cyclocross. And I was all, "yeah, someday... <Sigh>".

And now, John got us a cross bike and we can share it because I'm a tall drink of water. He likes cross for winter training so we registered for a race in RI - Verge Series #10. I showed up with my badass attitude on the morning of the race, John had me practice mounting and dismounting, and I rode a lap of the course. It was just like riding around my neighborhood and in the woods behind my parents house. I was totally amped. It was FREEZING out and John raced first, while I froze one hand off to get photos. He started almost last and still finished in the top 25%. He's so dreamy.

Now for my race! I had a bitch of a time clipping in on the pedals we were using but I didn't care. I was just out there to try it out and have some fun and be able to say I raced cross (\m/).

- I only fell once
- I got to run in the sand carrying a bike (and that was when I passed people)
- I got lots of practice with sharp cornering (which I'm really bad at)
- I looked like I knew what I was doing when I jumped over the thingies
- I got to ride with all the lead, superfast women (when they were on their fifth lap and I was on my fourth)
- I didn't finish last

Overall, a kick ass event! I can't wait to do another one. I hear there's a long one called Ironcross. I already want to do that. The most important thing to take away from this experience... I'm glad I approach triathlon and cycling with fun first and results fourth in importance (second is tri-food and third is tri-make-up). I frigging love this stuff.

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Saturday, December 4, 2010

Life Reckoning and Lentil Burgers

(Red Lentil Burger -recipe below- Photo by @mollybermea)

In order to kick off tri training on the right foot, I've decided to go "iron-monk" as John calls it. This isn't quite iron-monk though. It's more an early base season thingy. It's a reckoning. I started last Sunday by organizing my tri gear and whatnot so that I can get ready for a ride in less than 1 full hour (that's pretty much how long it took last weekend). I'm not really talking about a cleanse here. This is more of an emotional organizing and centering exercise. It's about routine.

For the next 20 days (until Christmas Eve)


- mostly vegan diet, with fish or eggs added, as needed
- one "treat" per day
- mostly tea, occasional coffee


- yoga each morning (of my choice OR the Tibetan Rites)
- light tri training (1-2 bikes per week, 2 or more runs per week)
- weight pile (2x per week)
- core (3x per week)
*This sounds like a lot but most are very short workouts and the routine is the point I want to focus on

Mental cleansing/self-care:

- read 1 book per week (which I love to do, so this is about making the time)
- 1 evening date per week with MYSELF
- cut down on some distractions (blackberry) when I could be quietly reflecting (like when I'm on a bus ride across town)

Its pretty simple and its how I like to live. John is spending December focused on training so he's pleased that my "reckoning" will roll over onto him. And here is a lentil burger recipe I plan to use this weekend:

Red Lentil Burgers

2 cups red lentils, washed and drained
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 cups water
1/4 tbsp dried basil
1/4 tbsp cumin
1/8 tbsp turmeric
1/8 tbsp thyme
2 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
1 tbsp umeboshi vinegar (or rice vinegar)

1. In a pot, sauté the onion, garlic and cilantro. Add lentils and water and bring to a boil. Add basil, cumin, turmeric, thyme, tamari soy sauce and umeboshi vinegar. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
2. Uncover, stir and cover again for 10 mins. Stir and simmer vigorously uncovered for 3 more minutes. It will look mushy because red lentils lose their shape when cooking.
3. Place lentils in a bowl in the fridge to cool.
4. When cool form burgers. Broil, or pan fry to serve.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Healthy(ish) Latkes

(This is John's godson. He will slay you with his cuteness)

I made latkes! And now you can make the same ones I made. It will be like we have a special connection. Because I made the latkes, now you're gonna make 'em, and I'm gonna eat them, and so are you. And maybe, just maybe, we'll be eating them at the same time. It will be like, even though we're far apart, and maybe we've never even met, we're sharing "healthy" greasy food with each other. I love you.

Zucchini and Carrot Fritters with Yogurt-Mint Dip

1 cup flour, more as needed (I use gluten free)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon coriander
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup milk (I use oat milk), more as needed
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 large carrots, grated
1 large zucchini, grated
*I think it would be killer to cut up some spinach super fine and sneak it in here as well
2 scallions, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon chopped mint
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Olive oil or coconut oil for frying.

1. To make the batter for the fritters: in a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, coriander and 1/2 teaspoon salt. In a separate large bowl, whisk together the milk, egg, lemon zest and pepper.

2. Pour dry ingredients into wet; whisk until just blended. Stir in the carrots, zucchini and scallions. Allow to rest for 30 mins.

3. To make the yogurt dip: using a mortar and pestle or the back of a knife, mash together the garlic and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the garlic paste, yogurt, mint and 1 tablespoon extra virgin oil. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

4. Fill a wide saucepan with 1 inch of olive or coconut oil; heat until a small drip of batter browns immediately. Line a cookie sheet with paper towels. Working in batches, drop battered vegetables by the tablespoon into the oil, being sure not to overcrowd the pan. Fry, turning occasionally, until golden all over, about 3-4 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer fritters to the cookie sheet to drain. Transfer fritters to a platter or plate; sprinkle with salt and serve with yogurt dip.
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Sweet Potato Quesadilla (for the fans)

(I stole this photo from @Zentriathlon)

For those of you who went ape-poop over the photo Brett posted about his quesadilla, here is the recipe I originally shared with him. I happen to know he eats it with sweet potato, and sometimes substitutes other main ingredients. I think his tweet was a version with bison meat (which you would just saute to add).

Sweet Potato Quesadilla

2 large sweet potatoes
1 can refried beans
1 can black beans
a jar of your fave salsa
1 pkg corn tortillas

1. Cook the sweet potatoes either in the oven if you have time, or in the microwave. Meanwhile, heat a can of refried beans and a can of black beans in a pan over low heat.

2. When the sweet potatoes are done, do your best not to burn yourself, and scrape the mush out of the skins and into a bowl. Mix with 1/2 cup or more of your favorite fancyish salsa (something with spices, onion, corn and jalapenos can be what makes this dish taste like it was a lot more work than it was).

3. Prepare 2 tortillas by adding a layer of refried beans, a layer of black beans, and a layer of sweet potato deliciousness on 1 of the tortillas, cover with the other. Transfer to an oiled pan and cook for about 4 mins on each side at medium heat. Eat with salsa and guacamole and lettuce. Variations: add a layer of chicken or beef, spinach and cheese.
Garnish with a lime.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Garlic, Grapes (and maybe Thyme)

Here is a recipe I tried yesterday. It's a fun and creative dish, though I would skip the thyme in the future (no, I'm not gonna say "next thyme"). Maybe you can trick your kids (or husband) into eating sprouts if they're mixed with grapes. I don't have kids or a husband so I used this recipe on other peoples kids and husbands, because I'm like that.

Brussels Sprouts with Garlic, Grapes, and Thyme

1 Tbsp olive oil
1-1/2 cups brussels sprouts, ends removed and sliced in half
2 cloves garlic, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup red seedless grapes
1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves (maybe basil would be better)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Meanwhile, heat oil in saute pan and cook, stirring occasionally until they turn bright green and for about 8 minutes.

2. Add the garlic, salt and pepper, grapes, and thyme (or don't) to the pan and mix well.

3. Transfer the ingredients into a baking dish and roast for 30 minutes, giving it a shake every so often to keep it from sticking. Like, you could do one 1-minute plank and then rest for 5 minutes and then shake the pan and then repeat 4-5 times. Or you could prepare your other side dish (maybe delicata squash). Or you could call your mom. Or you could lay on the bed with the dog and pet her. Or you could blog. Or you could go downstairs and do the laundry. Or you could watch a show, though maybe you shouldn't because you might forget to shake the pan. But I guess you could shake the pan when there are commercials. So just make sure you have commercials on your show. Or maybe you could get online and sign up to go train with awesome people in San Diego at ZenTri Camp in January (www.zentriathlon.com) or sign up to go train with awesome people in freakin' Spain in February at Strong Like Bull (www.stronglikebulltraining.com). Or you could do both, like me, and get insanely fit. But you need to be able to tele-web-commute for your job. But anyway, after 30 minutes remove the sprouts from the oven.

4. Serve them hot.

(Recipe adapted from The Putnam County Courier)
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Monday, November 15, 2010

Soup Season

People are starting to get sick. Maybe your coworkers are sniffling, maybe your kids are a snotty mess, and maybe your beloved is a little bit cranky about feeling feverish when you want to spoon all night anyway.

So make some soup. Not just today, but a couple of times a week. This is a link to a past blog post with my favorite soup recipe - which I'm making in about 5 seconds because I have one of the problems listed above... though I won't say which.

Also, I was talking about some yummy, healthy (ish) brownies and people were interested in the recipe, so here is that one as well.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Dose of Straightforwardness from holisticEVIL

I got this question in an email this week and I answered using my alter ego, @holisticEVIL:

Q: "I have a friend who says she's been taking Emergen-C for electrolytes and vitamins. I really don't know why, but that's what she's been doing. She's also been having a really hard time because she's dizzy ALL the time lately. It's been happening for weeks. Today, she researched Emergen-C and found it has MSG in it, so now she's raving about neurotoxins. She asked me "What's that stuff you use that you bought at the running store?". I sent her a link to Heed. I love Heed, but only drink it when I'm working out. She's freaking out about the Heed, too, because it has "natural flavors". I sent her their explanation of natural flavors and she's still freaking out. 
My question to you is this: Do you have ANY idea what I can suggest to her? She's a very close friend, and I love her, but I don't have the patience to watch THAT closely what goes into my body. I've come to accept that unless I were to grow EVERY single thing and monitor my water supply, I will ingest poisons. 
You're the only person I know who would even have a clue about this stuff. Like I said, I don't know why she feels she needs the electrolytes. 
Thank you for your time, Guru. I appreciate all of your awesome advice, whether it's here or on Twitter. :) You're one of a kind!

Love Always,

Your Biggest Fan"

And my answer:

"Dear Biggest Fan,

Is your friend an athlete? I'm not sure why she would need electrolytes either. Has she tried drinking coconut water? What is she worried that she might be missing?

Some people need a serious smack into being a flexitarian... Meaning, that they need to remove the nutrition stick out of their ass and not worry so much about everything. Worrying and being anal retentive about food causes worse damage to your body than a bit of "natural flavors" ever could. She needs to follow the 90/10 rule: 90% of what I eat is healthful, making it so that the other 10% is irrelevant.

For example, I ate an assload of fruit and greens today. Then I ate a rice krispy treat. I'm still healthier than 99% of people in this country.

Thanks for the compliments. I'm always happy to help :)


What do you readers think about this? Is a 100% healthy diet or an 80- 90% flexible healthy diet better in the long run?
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Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Halloween weekend began with a pumpkin carving party on Friday night. We also made candy apples and watched Nightmare Before Christmas. It was tons of fun. Coraline even got her face painted (with washable markers). I never even realized that having an all white doggie would be like having a blank canvas to draw on. Then on Saturday we went to the wedding of 2 triathlon friends, Ken and Aubrey. Aubrey also recently graduated from the Instutute for Integrative Nutrition and is now a health counselor, like me! The wedding was outdoors and perfect and beautiful with all of the fall colors. Saturday night we got home late but still got all dressed up to go to a halloween dance party. I was an evil marionette and John was a puppet master. We looked awesome and had a blast!

Sunday we recovered from Saturday by eating healthy food and resting. Then on Monday morning John took me to the gym with him. I did his strength workout and now I can't walk very well. Its the good kind of pain though... The kind that comes when you're building muscle to ride your bike faster. It also helps to know that many of the CREW will be doing the same thing and we'll all be walking funny!

I'm seriously looking forward to next season. I'm focusing on base training, building strength, getting enough rest, and eating clean to get me through the winter.

(Photo: I was the EVIL marionette - skeery!)
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Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Finally! Crazy season is over. I've spent the last few weeks after Rev3 Cedar Point catching up with non-tri friends, staying out late, dancing, indulging... (And I spent lots of time cooking and working) But I can't live like this! Triathlon keeps me centered and grounded. I NEED my routines to stay on top of my life and to be HAPPY. This past week I really started to come unglued. I got lazy and bratty and started ignoring some responsibilities. I really got a taste for what life could be like without as much structure. Yuck!

Lucky for me, my grandfather taught me "if you want to be fast you gotta sleep with your coach". So this morning I woke up next to mine (www.johnhirsch.org) and he dragged our lazy butts out of bed for a trail run. Man that felt good! I was already on my way to picking up the pieces yesterday by focusing on reorganizing some life and work stuff. I'm so ready to get back into training and living MY life, the way I love it.

I also had an important meeting this morning that will lead to an exciting project on the horizon. I can't announce it yet, but its BIG.

And most importantly, come to Zen Tri Camp with me! There are still spots left and the price was just lowered to $350 for the entire weekend! You'll get training and advice from Brett Blankner, Pro John Hirsch, Pro Jessi Stensland, Ultraman Rich Roll, and myself. How fun would that be?!

Check out: http://www.zentriathlon.com/basecamp/ for details and to sign up. That's where I'll be really kicking it into gear after the holidays.

(Photo: Coraline went apple picking and there was a petting zoo!)
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Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Funnest Thing I've Ever Done

I'm going to write a proper race report tomorrow, but for now, here is a link to Cathy's race report for the Fairfield sprint tri. Yesterday, I was her guide for the race and I had the best time!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Wanna Run the NYC Marathon?

You can still get in AND run with an awesome group of athletes! I've been hanging with Team Continuum a lot lately. You should join me for several reasons:

1. Its super fun to hang with friends while running.
2. Meeting with the group on Wednesday and Saturday (or even not making it and knowing they're out there) will inspire you to get out there and run.
3. You get free coaching, and the coach is DREAMY.
4. You get free giveaways.
5. You raise money to provide practical and personal assistance to cancer patients who are struggling with disruptions to their lives so that they can focus on medical care.

*Team Continuum just lowered the minimum fundraising requirement, so sign up now! See you out there!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Good As New!

Great news! I went to the doctor yesterday and he is says my hand is ready for my cast to come off. Finally I'll be able to do dishes and type and put my hair in a ponytail. I'm thrilled, but it gets even better than that...

I'm racing the HIM at Rev3 Cedar Point! I got back on my trainer last week and had to dust my bike off. Like, for real. I've been running all along but I haven't been swimming and have only been on my bike once since IMLP. My coach/ best boyfriend in the world, John says I can take the next several days as a mini training camp and I'll be all set. He also says I'll get some post IM strength that will be timed perfectly with the race. So I kicked it off with a long run with John last night.

I'll admit, it has been hard to be away from my training for the past few weeks. It was a reminder of how important exercise is to keep me feeling grounded. I'm beside myself with excitement and gratitude that I can jump back in.

Also, I'm even more excited that I'll run through the finish line and, without stopping, continue running back out to the course to cheer for John and watch him finish the full. He's killing it this season and I know he's gonna have another great race. And I get to race and spectate. Its perfect!

(Pic: Me after an awesome group run with Team Continuum)
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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Things Like This

(Pic: Cathy and her doggie on the Jersey Shore)

Make me feel like I've chosen the right work for myself...

Here is a recent blog post from a new client. She used to eat Pop Tarts EVERY morning! She's kicked that habit along with making some other healthy changes.


Thursday, August 12, 2010


(Pic: My cast looks pretty with my skirt and prettier with the skull rug)

So yeah, I finally did my first ironman. As soon as I finished I was starving for the next one. I'm a tough little cookie. I train my ass off. Once I crashed my bike pretty badly and then got up as quickly as possible so that I wouldn't waste my time to flirt with the firemen who came to my rescue (Anna - mmmmm firemen). But apparently I'm not invincible becauser after ironman I came home, unpacked, and did the laundry. THE LAUNDRY. On my way down the stairs, with 2 huge bags of smelly triathlon clothing, I tripped and fell. I broke my right hand. Are you kidding me?! Ugh.

That is the last time I do anything as dangerous as LAUNDRY.

So here I am, in a splint - which is a half cast held on by an ace bandage. At least I can take it off to shower. The bad news is that I have to be disciplined about wearing it all the time. I can't type or use a knife. I can't do the dishes. I'm useless. At least I can still talk on the phone so business isn't entirely put aside.

That said, I'm very positive about this. Imagine if it happened before IMLP? All I can do is laugh at my own crazy clumsiness.

I need to be kept in a bubble.
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Sunday, August 8, 2010

Healthy Snacking

(Pic: wild blackberries picked on Block Island - note the bracelet on my right wrist)

I received a question from a twitter follower last night about healthy snacking and I thought it would make a useful blog post for my adoring fans.

The question:

What are some healthy snacks I can choose when I start to get brain-dead, tired, and restless around 3pm? A piece of fruit doesn't do it for me anymore and I've fallen into the habit of getting an ice cream instead


1) Your lack of energy could be a hydration issue. One of the first things that happens when we start to become dehydrated is a decrease in energy. We don't actually feel thirsty until we're dehydrated so its important to keep drinking water to avoid feeling thirsty. Also, our brains often misinterpret our body thirst signals as food cravings.

Step #1 to wake yourself up at 3pm... "do a little dance and take a sip of water" -Red Hot Chili Peppers

2) Also, when you crave a snack try deconstructing that craving and identifying the specific qualities of the food in mind. Are you craving creamy or cold food when you get ice cream? Can you find something healthier to have instead, like a creamy and cold smoothie? Or a blended frozen banana? Most people tend to crave certain types of foods all the time. Identify the common qualities and come up with a list of snack ideas that have these qualities.

3) Another way to increase your energy in mid-afternoon is to move your body. Try going for a short stroll, doing push ups, a 5-minute core workout or a few yoga stretches. Any yoga pose that inverts your head will refresh your energy. Try a standing forward bend or a few sun salutations.

4) Create your own healthy snack list. Try making a list of healthy snack ideas based on 4 categories: crunchy, creamy, salty, sweet. Here is an example to get you started:


frozen grapes
carrots with hummus
celery with peanut butter


fruit smoothie
frozen, blended banana


peanuts or other nuts
steamed veggies with tamari


wheat grass
baked sweet potato or other root veggie
apple with almond butter
dark chocolate chips

Feel free to leave comments with the snack ideas from your own healthy snack list!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

An Exciting New Adventure (which happens to involve racing)

(Pic: yummy acai bowls with granola, banana, and berries)

I'm very excited to announce that I'm going to be a guide for a triathlon. This is something I've always wanted to do and it recently just fell in my lap. I got an email from an awesome woman interested in health counseling. She is legally blind due to a condition that developed several years ago, called macular degeneration. Health counseling with Cathy will involve some interesting problem solving and I've really been enjoying the process with her already. She's very dedicated to her nutrition goals and she's also a triathlete!

Here is her newly created blog that she has dedicated to her journey. I'm very excited to be a part of it! We've already chosen our race, The Trifitness Fairfield Triathlon in CT on September 25th.

This is gonna be fun!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Block Island Tri

And here's another race report...

Last year I came to BI for the first time to do the BI tri with John. I won my age group and had a blast, especially with the barefoot beach run. It seemed crazy to race only 6 days after IMLP but John had a title to defend and wanted to line up and see what happens. I was more than happy to oblige.

Amazingly, I felt great. We did a warm up ride before the race with some pick ups and I felt strong. I didn't know how, or why, but I was ready to race. I was in the first wave for the choppy ocean swim and got out pretty quickly. It was hard to breathe with the waves so sometimes I just held my breath. I swam hard, wanting to get the hell out of there, and ended up having one of the fastest swims I've ever had. Go figure.

I felt pretty good on the bike. Not great, but not terrible. Honestly, I felt much worse trying to ride a week after Am Zof. I've definitely made huge improvements this year with cycling and its the one area I really want to focus on improving in. This race is hilly and windy. Its also beautiful.

The run was on the beach. The trick is to not wear sneakers. The run here is my favorite part. Its somewhere around 4 miles, who's to say for sure. I was definitely feeling physically exhausted for the run but psyched that nothing hurt too bad from IM. I settled into an almost comfortable but fast-ish pace and was able to pass a few women. At the first turn around I counted 7 women in front of me. I went on to pass 2 more and then in the last half mile was passed by a girl in my age group. After she passed me, I had a crazy spectator running alongside me, screaming "block Island Sport Shop!" "John Hirsch dot org!" "Go Guru!". The crazy guy was James :)

I finished 2nd in my AG and 6th overall woman. Awesome day!
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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

IMLP Race Report

(Pic: Mirror Lake on race morning)

"Soak in every moment. There is no feeling that compares to your first IM" - A DM I got before the race from @HarveyDanger, a man who I have been following and has been an inspiration to me. I made this my main goal of the day.

When I started writing this race report I was sitting in a cafe, wearing my finisher's shirt with an IMLP finisher sticker displayed on the back of my laptop. A man walked over to my table and asked "Did you just run the ironman?" I beamed "YUP". Then he's all "You're my hero". Awesome...

Race morning - Having so much of the CREW with me the morning and day of the race was incredible. IronmanBobby asked John and I what time we would have our alarm set for race morning. He set his for 15 minutes earlier so that our coffee would be ready. John left to walk to the race start early, I followed along with Anna soon after. Anna is amazing. She's done this (IM) 13 times so I just followed her around, imitating everything she did to get ready. I felt relaxed.

Swim - The water was perfect and I couldn't wait to get started. I lined up in the back and danced and rocked out to the music until the cannon went off. I had a pretty bad injury on my hand from the week before and I had to be careful not to reinjure it by getting beat up in the swim. This was nearly impossible in the battle zone that is the swim start at IMLP. So my strategy... I waited a few minutes until everyone swam away and then I swam over to the inside of the buoys and took a super chill pace so that I wouldn't catch the big crowd. Eventually it thinned out more and I passed a bunch of people (swimming wide for plenty of room) and was able to swim the second lap closer to my normal pace. The added benefit of this strategy was that I started a really long and potentially anxiety filled day feeling completely in control of my experience and not overwhelmed by fists to the face. Time: 1:29:36

(Pic: Me and Anna, after she put on her wetsuit and I copied her and did the same)

T1 - With the cut on my hand still delicate from the swim, this had to be done one-handed. The worst part was taking off my wetsuit, it took a long time. A volunteer offered to help but I was doing fine on my own and felt more comfortable doing it myself. Time: 9:36

Bike - As I was mounting my bike, a spectator standing about a foot away said to me "Go out there and enjoy every minute, soak it all in"... coincidence? Thanks for the reminder! Anyway, I hadn't gotten to ride the course since the previous year. I was super excited to ride because I was much stronger and had a faster bike. I focused on "the Strategy" which I had been following thanks to my best bud Phil. I took it really easy on the climbs and still passed a lot of people because I'm a strong climber. Then I allowed myself to push a bit on the descents and flats. In February, at Strong Like Bull, I learned some bike handling tricks that made me much faster (and less nervous) on descents. The first loop came easily and pretty fast for me. At the end of the first loop I started to think "YES! I get to do this again". I was told that the hills get bigger for the second loop of the bike and I found this to be true. Add the wind and I started to find the whole thing a bit tiring. I slowed down a bit, but was no less happy. The second ride over "the bears" was awesome with a gazillion spectators screaming "nice pace" as I passed people with ease, sitting up on my saddle. And then a highlight of my day... I take the right to start my parade through town and I hear "GO GURU" and see Kate and Phil! YAY!!! That filled my energy tank more than any calories ever could. I was fully recharged to kick ass on the run. Time: 7:02:13

T2 - This transition was much faster and unimpeded by my hand injury. Most importantly, I grabbed my lucky Rev3 visor because Phil wore that exact one last year for IMLP and he had a spectacular race. I couldn't wait to get out there and run. Time: 3:45

Run - My legs never felt like jello. They never do anymore. I love running off the bike. The first few miles were mostly downhill and filled with my loved ones, which explains my 8:45 pace over the first 10k. Before I got to the turn onto the out-and-back I got to see John, with only 2 miles left. A perfect start to a marathon. My focus at this point was to chill out and not go out too fast. The songs stopped playing in my head and my thoughts were replaced with numbers and equations, trying to guess at my finishing time. Coming back through town, I got news from my tri-family that John had finished 12th. I was stoked, as this was a huge pro field and he must have had a great race. Moving forward, my body felt surprisingly awesome until about mile 18. At that point I felt the fatigue setting in. This was what people are talking about when they say that your legs keep going because they know what to do, while your brain has checked out. I knew that, no matter what, I was finishing close to 13 hours, and of course played with the idea of breaking 13. Then I thought of the climbing I had ahead of me over the last few miles and decided a more approriate goal would be not to walk. Not even one step. Not at an aid station and not on a hill. Just keep running... and I did. People were screaming at me on the hills because so few people were still running up them. I saw my amazing support team again at the start of the last climb, blew kisses and trudged on. Just before the last little leg out-and-back I heard someone yell "I LOVE YOU CHRISTINE LYNCH" and thought, that could be any one of my fans... but I looked and saw John! He looked so happy, which made me tear up (in the eyes) and then tear up the rest of the run. Coming into the oval I picked up the pace a teensie bit more, which was all I could muster, while I listened for "Christine Lynch of New York, NY... You are an IRONMAN!!!" Time: 4:21:54

Here's the thing... I fully expected to have a day filled with ups and downs. I didn't expect to have a day that was ALL ups. I honestly LOVED every second and never once thought of pulling out or stopping. Even when I stared up a giant hill, about to run it with exhausted and screaming legs, all I could see were my friends, my support, my dedication, the fantastic year of training and racing... and that this was simply my celebration.

And in case this report isn't enough, here are some helpful links to interviews, videos and more pics of ME!!!

Pics from TheyTri.

Video of me finishing.

And the best interview ever from Ironman Bobby.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Ironman Morning

Here I go...
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Saturday, July 24, 2010

Good Luck John!

I just want to give you a giant THANK YOU. You have been by my side through the year as I've gotten myself ready for ironman. I could have done it without you... but not like this. You made this experience so much richer. I've also loved every second of supporting you as you prepared for your IM. I'm honored to share so much with you. I'm proud to be your girlfriend and I'm VERY proud OF you and all the work you've done this year.

Sometimes I think I must be in a dream. Like if I pinch myself I'll wake up. Most importantly, I never thought I would meet a man who would love me so completely and treat me like a princess. You're my best friend. Somehow, we spend a ridiculous amount of time together and we only grow closer and closer (even when we drive each other crazy). In the past year we've travelled so many miles together... West Virginia, Lou, Texas, Spain, Block Island, VT, MA, RI... I'm sure I'm forgetting some. And now we've come full circle in Lake Placid. I remember signing up for IMLP 2010 then getting in the car to drive to VT to have lunch with a new guy I was crushing on.

Now we're here together, surrounded by our new life. We've combined our people, inside jokes and our traditions together to build something new. I look around me in awe. I love my life, OUR life.

When we leave on Tuesday I'll have finished my first ironman, you'll have had one of your best races because your heart is deep in this one. I'll want nothing more than to go back home to our Coraline and continue this dream. I'm looking forward to more.

Good luck tomorrow. You'll be amazing. Your dedicated (and insane) training this year will see you through, along with all of your heart, soul and might.

"I'll eat you up, I love you so"...

IMLP #i8this - Saturday and Sunday

(J made the whole CREW his famous satan-cakes for breakfast)

Here's a backlog of my food log for IMLP #i8this. John warned me that I wouldn't have time for a project like this and he was right. I did jot notes though, so here it is (with less detail of the when/ how):

Saturday: Day before IMLP

breakfast - gf pancakes with maple syrup and 2 scrambled eggs

snack - hemp shake

lunch - organic turkey on gf bagel with spinach and jalapeno mustard

snack - 3 gf cookies, lemonade

dinner - gf baked ziti and spinach

dessert - 1 more gf cookie


And finally, Sunday: Race day!!!

breakfast - 32 oz water, 2 cups coffee, gf bagel with peanut butter and banana

pre swim - more water

bike - 2 bottles heed, 2 bottles perpetuem, 2 bottles water, 2 Nature Valley granola bars (I like them because they're not too sweet), 1 turkey sandwich on gf bread with mustard (the sandwich was key for me because I get soooo hungry), 1 espresso hammer gel

run - 3 gels, 1 Nature Valley granola bar, alternating powerade (course drink) and water at aid stations

post race - water, gf pasta mac and cheese


Stay tuned for a complete post on how to eat in the days after IM to replace calories and promote speedy recovery. It's not as bad as it sounds. I had plenty of treats and "crap" food. I even called the day after IM "melted cheese day".

IMLP #i8this - Friday

(Me in the middle of a John Hirsch sandwich at the pasta dinner)

I woke up early to a quiet house and got to sit for an hour and get caught up with emails of good luck while I sipped some plain hot water (don't knock it till you try it). For breakfast #1 I made a hemp shake with banana, peanut butter and maca. Everyone else was up early for an easy spin to the first big descent on the course. We wanted to ride the descent once to get pumped. We even had our sag wagon meet us at the bottom to escort us back to the house! We came home just as Bill arrived with bagels and I was glad I brought my own gluten free ones.

The rest of the day was pretty chill. John came with me to check in, which was a big deal. It's my first ironman! I even got to sit in on the pro meeting after check in. Lunch back at the house was leftover cobb salad from dinner the night before and then a quick power nap.

We considered cooking a big group dinner but going to check in made me want to soak in more of the IM energy so I wanted to go to the pasta dinner. I went prepared with my own gluten free pasta. The dinner got us completely geeked (John loves it). After dinner we went home and watched Lord of the Rings and ate fruit for dessert.

Overall, it was a nice and relaxing day. Of course I had a couple of unexpected panics but the excitement brewing in this town is completely infectious and overtook any scary feelings.

#i8this Friday:

breakfast - hemp shake, gf bagel with veggie and lox cream cheese

lunch - cobb salad

dinner - gf pasta with sauteed garlic and peas, salad

dessert - cherries and a peach

Friday, July 23, 2010

IMLP #i8this - Travel Day

(Pic: an accidental one taken at Mirror Lake)

This morning began our official IMLP adventure. John has his cheerleader face on, making me feel like every step we take is a giant party. Waking up to start packing the car on travel day came with a party. We played slipknot and jumped around while singing made up songs about ironman. We had a breakfast of herbal tea and hempshakes with banana, peanut butter, and maca. Then we were off to pick up our friend Conner for the drive up.

I did the driving so I brought lunchie road foods that were healthy and I could eat without a mess. At 11 we stopped and I had sliced organic turkey, spinach salad mix (no dressing for less mess), gluten free pretzels and jalapeno hummus. Later in the ride we also snacked on peaches and cherries. You're gonna think this is totally crazy but I got this spinach lettuce mix that tastes amazing. I've been eating it plain. It has all of the small lettuce type greens like mache and arugula which have a nice kick to them. Its something that we never really slow down and taste on its own but I've been snacking on it like its popcorn. I was very happy with my high protein, high fruit/veggie, and low carb lunch for my taper road food.

When we finally arrived in Lake Placid I couldn't wait to get to the house. I've been really excited to have everyone so close to the lake and the center of town. We pulled up, were greeted by Anna, Grant and Kristoph. There was more jumping up and down, and then we suited up for a swimmy in Mirror Lake. I made a quick sandwich of hummus and spinach on gluten free bread to hold me over until dinner and until we could make our grocery store trip. The swim was incredible. I loved being in that lake again. Right before leaving the lake a guy stopped us saying "I recognize you two. You're John and you're the girl from that podcast". It was Charlie, a man behind Rev3. It turns out he watched the Ironmanbobby Podcast round table discussion from post Rev3 Quassy. I seriously can't go anywhere without being recognized these days. I'm gonna start swimming in a floppy hat and sunglasses ;)

After our swim we decided to go into town for dinner because it had gotten so late. I prefer cooking over going out, but I prefer being flexible over all other choices. At dinner I had some nachos that our table shared (salsa, roasted veggies, guacamole and cheese) and I had 1/2 of a cobb salad. Oh and a guinness. I love me a guinness.

This town is buzzing with excitement which makes it hard for me to sleep! I can't wait to get to tomorrow... 2 more days till MY FIRST IRONMAN!!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

IMLP #i8this

(A healthy taper meal: veggie omelet and baked sweet potato)

I've decided to bring back #i8this for my pre-IMLP, race day and post race eating. Any time that I want to be especially diligent about my diet (like during a taper or recovery or if I'm fighting off a cold) I find it helpful to keep a food journal to keep me honest and inspired. With the added challenge of having my food journal kept public, there's no way I'll ruin my race with bad nutrition beforehand. I'm going to show up to the swim start on Sunday with my body feeling 100% ready, inside and out. Also, there may be some fun group cooking and meals at our CREW IMLP house so I'm sure I'll have some yummy meal ideas and photos to post.

If you want to join in with this #i8this challenge, I would be excited to have the company! Seeing others jumping in will make me feel like its a group effort. How fun is that?

Also, John wrote an AWESOME post about his taper diet. He even included tips and meal ideas for you. He's very smart in the brain about nutrition... you'll think so too: www.johnhirsch.org

And lastly,

3 days 21 hours 29 minutes and 24 seconds!!!!!!!!!!!


(July 4th sunset on Block Island)

I wrote this post, but never got to upload it, on July 4th. I decided to do a "thank you" post that day because I already felt so accomplished. It was the last day of my IMLP training. The actual race will be a celebration of the training commitment I made to myself a year ago. Also, I'll probably be too tired after IM to even think straight!

July 4th, 2010

Yesterday I did my last long run of the final push for IMLP. Normally I train with music but I somehow forgot to bring my ipod to Block Island so I went without. I didn't mind because I'm not going to be racing with music so it seemed like a great time to get comfortable with it. So, I was out there with my thoughts. I was stoked to finally have arrived at my last day of training, feeling like I did everything I needed to do... feeling completely prepared. That brought me to a blissful place of gratitude and I ended up passing the time by listing all of the people who contributed in my IM training journey. I'm going to try to remember as much as possible now...

John - for being my partner through all of this and for encouraging me, coaching me, and inviting me into his triathlon world.

Phil and Kate - for being my best training buddies and support for the past couple of years. I could never thank them enough.

Diana - for supporting me and for getting excited about my training and racing with me (and even joining me in some workouts).

The CREW (Grant, Anna, PJ, etc) - for the many training hours, racing days and inside jokes.

Brett - for being a business partner, training partner (in TX), and dear friend.

Javier and Coach Adam - for the beginnings.

And everyone else who has helped me along the way... I'm grateful.


To get myself pumped for IMLP I have been listening to a song that I'll be singing at my spectators when I see them along the course.

Thunder by Matisyahu (click here to listen)

I had to cross the line to leave you behind
With hopes to find some peace of mind
Now I'm looking for your voice through the chitter-chatter
that doesn't matter that's torn and tattered these angels on a ladder
This laughter
Strip away the extra plaster
I'm crashing fast
It's the morning after
Through the hum and the buzz
The thickness and the fuzz
I jump over puddles to stomp through the sludge

Look for me through the wind and rain
Sunshine remember my name
I'll be coming yes I'm running oh I'm on my way
Just stay and I'll be there by the break of day

Look for me through the wind and rain
Thunder remember my name
I'll be coming yes I'm running oh I'm on my way
Just stay and I'll be there by the break of day

I had to evacuate the premises
You're your own nemesis
The premises you're born and blood and leave the world penniless
I had to remember that there's darkness before the exodus
Split the sea
We'll flee to the next
Come and vent with us
I had to send and blend out
Spent it all on sentences fend off the members of relentless pessimists
I had to miss the world
Looking for the core
Cure my heart so I can live more

Look for me through the wind and rain
Sunshine remember my name
I'll be coming yes I'm running oh I'm on my way
Just stay and I'll be there by the break of day

Look for me through the wind and rain
Thunder remember my name
I'll be coming yes I'm running oh I'm on my way
Just stay and I'll be there by the break of day

Remember my name
Remember my name

City lights shine and I'm on my way
This time tomorrow I'll be on my way
At the break of day I look for you at sunrise
When the tide comes in I lose my disguise

Look for me through the wind and rain
Sunshine remember my name
I'll be coming yes I'm running oh I'm on my way
Just stay and I'll be there by the break of day

Look for me through the wind and rain
Thunder remember my name
I'll be coming yes I'm running oh I'm on my way
Just stay and I'll be there by the break of day

You feel it in your chest

You feel it in your chest

Friday, July 2, 2010

Practicing For My Taper

I had a rest day yesterday and decided to log some "triangle bikini" hours. My taper starts on Monday. Starting that day I'll be training less and resting more (but also working more). Actually, J pointed out that its 6 weeks of "resting" with an IM in the middle. Yay!

I actually don't care about being tan as much as I care about what the "triangle tan" represents. It means I've been sitting on a beach, in a park, or by a pool reading a novel and sipping a homemade lemonade. My weekend long training days will become triangle bikini days. I gotta log those hours. They're important! I plan to rope the HFWT mama (aka Mrs. Theytri) into joining me for lots of it.

After I'm recovered from IM its back to training for Rev3 Sandusky/ Ohio/ Cedarpoint. That race will be clutch because CREW is rolling DEEP. After that race I'm hoping to try some cross racing. According to our dear friend Michael Seiler (@bikezen), "cross is boss \mm/". I can't wait to find out!
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Thursday, July 1, 2010

My Last Long Day

(J taking a pic of us riding with Brookey)

Yesterday I completed my last "Death Brick". This one could have been the easiest because I had completed the distance plenty of times before, but the fact that it brought me to 300 bike miles in 6 days made me see stars (and spiders) by the end. I had been looking forward to this workout as a celebration and I had originally planned to do it with the company of 2 CREWmates, PJ and Phil next Saturday. Alas, travel plans change and John and I ended up staying on Block Island through next weekend. I was sad to have to cancel plans with my friends (and especially my sister) so John offered to cheer me up by doing my last ride with me at my pace. The best day for this was Wednesday. Less than a week after my 120 mile ride. The way to prep for the ride was with one word... "DigDeep".

My plan called for a 100 mile ride then an hour run. John planned to add mileage for himself and ended up riding 132 miles (can you say psycho?). There were blustery winds and rolling hills here and there, but not too tough of a ride. Our pace was fun and relaxed and at one point we were joined by our friend Brooke (badass 14 year old Ortel athlete) and we barely noticed the 20 miles we rode with her. Brooke is the coolest and she's my bff on BI. It wasn't until about mile 70 that I started to feel the physical exhaustion seep into my brain. I started to feel that slow decline of cognitive processing and I felt worse than I had on any training ride thus far. To me, this was a goal. If I trained until I couldn't keep going I would know I did all I could. It was awesome because I was feeling a cumulative effect of 2.5 heavy weeks. I was tired and proud.

John noticed me starting to fade mentally and he immediately turned into the Coach/Comedian version of himself. He decided that would be a perfect moment to study for my final exam for my SLB and CREW Coach Certification. He threw me a bunch of multiple choice and fill-in-the-blank questions and I got them all right! It was hysterical. Keep an eye on his blog (www.johnhirsch.org) for a summary of the study session.

Before I knew it I had finished my 100 miles. I LOVE brick runs and normally can't wait to get started. Yesterday was the first time I wasn't sure I could do it. I asked John if an 11 min/mile pace was acceptable for me for that run and he said, no. He said I didn't have to run the full hour but I had to run 15 mins away and then decide whether to turn around or keep going. That seemed reasonable. So I headed out, ready to stumble along. But I wasn't stumbling! I felt amazing and light. I barely noticed the rolling hills and I was loving what I was feeling. First, I thought I had officially gone crazy. Then, I looked down at my watch and saw that I was running the first 3 miles at a sub 7:30 pace. I thought my watch had to be broken. But I pulled back, just in case. I ended the hour run with 7.95 miles. Then I checked on the distance. My watch measured it correctly. I'm a fricking animal.

I feel more than ready for IMLP. Tick, tock, tick, tock...
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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

If You Love Someone...

(Coraline after her run/swim brick workout)

You don't HATE their guts, you Fix their guts.

IM training was taking it's toll on John but luckily I swooped in to save him with the BRATTY Diet. Click here to learn more.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Final push for IMLP - Week #2

Week 2 of our final push brought us to MA to visit SLB Norte and my family. It was awesome to see Sean and Jen AND I got to have a birthday party for my favorite mom. We had less control over our eating for this week because we were visiting people, but we still ate really well. We seem to end up on a Mexican food theme when we're training so much. Breakfasts and lunches were homemade but a few dinners were eaten at restaurants. I was lucky and my healthy Chef Mom cooked me some delicious gluten free meals with lots of veggies. My mom is also a holistic health counselor and it was nice to be taken care of. My favorite meals of hers were:

- grilled portabella, veggie risoto and salad
- brown rice pasta with broccoli, garlic and shrimp

Training continued to rock on. I didn't swim in MA, which was fine because I would be ending my week on an island. Then things started to get challenging... I did my long run once we got to Block Island and my big toe turned blue! It was something that started the week prior during my long run but I tried to ignore it. It's just badly bruised. It kept me from getting in one last ride for the week because I can barely put my foot into a shoe. Boo :(

John made the PERFECT training plan for my final push. It's perfect because its more of a training MENU than a training PLAN. I had a bunch of other responsibilities to tend to during this trip, including: work/clients, my family visit, and supporting John (which I am stoked to be doing). By having a list of things to choose from and being able to arrange and rearrange my schedule in a checklist fashion, I'm more likely to keep plugging away and get things done. When I showed John my blue toe and told him it hurts too much to put a shoe on, he said to skip the ride I had planned yesterday and not to worry because he never expected me to do all of the workouts anyway. That would be crazy. I don't need to train THAT much for the results I want at IMLP :)

Here's the summary of Week 2:

Monday- 3k swim in the lake before leaving VT
Tuesday- 75 min run, 90 min ride
Wednesday- rest and work
Thursday- "Death Brick" 120 mile ride/30 min run
Friday- travel day and work
Saturday- 2.5 hr run (with a 1 hour walk in the middle bc I got lost)
Sunday- 3k swim


swim- 6k
bike- 144 miles
run- 30 miles

total hours = 16 hrs 45 mins (much less than last week - stupid toe)

And now I'm onward with week 3! I'm excited but also starting to get sad to see it end. Training is my favorite part. I'm just gonna have to be like my dear friend and CREWmate Miss Murder and race every weekend so that I can train all the time.

(My blue toe - ouchie)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Protein Question

(High protein saute of soyrizo, black beans, carrots and kale - to fill veggie tacos)

Lately, there seems to be a theme in the questions I'm receiving from clients and through my website. Common questions are: 1) "I'm trying to switch to a vegetarian/vegan diet... why don't I have any energy?" and 2) "Why am I feeling like everything is taking so much more effort?"

It's not always the case, but the answer for several people lately has been protein related. Of course there are a lot of factors that can lead to a "depleted" feeling, including over-training, calorie deficit, adrenal fatigue, stress, lack of sleep, etc.

Macro-nutrients (like carbs and protein) are needed for very specific reasons. Carbs help fuel your body to function, train and race. Protein helps repair and rebuild your muscles to keep them in working order. If you think of it like owning a car, carbs are the gas you put in your tank and protein is the maintenance work, like an oil change. You need both to be in tip top shape. If you aren't getting enough protein you're not going to feel awesome. If you're not getting enough carbs you'll be dragging ass as well.

"Normal" or "average" americans get more than enough of both. As triathletes, we're neither of those things. We're nutso, type-A, health-obsessed freaks. I talk to people all the time who are calorie restricting or eating some type of an "extreme diet". If you think you might not be getting enough of one of these macro-nutrients you should talk to someone who can help. This can be a tough puzzle to solve because there are a lot of pieces to consider. I help my clients figure out their metabolic type and then look at lifestyle, activity level and of course, current diet.

As a general guideline, and as a jumping off point in assessing your needs, you can focus on getting a significant form of protein at each meal (including snacks). I'm talking to the athletes here... especially the vegetarians and vegans.

Vegetarian/vegan protein sources include:

- grains (especially quinoa)
- beans
- soy (including "transition" foods like soy milk, tofu, tempeh)
- nuts
- protein bars
- protein powders
- spirulina

Please feel free to email me for more info at christine@liveandeatbetter.com

Week #1 and VT to MA

Vermont was pure bliss. Everything about it was rejuvenating. Somehow the long hours of training even felt like they built me up on an emotional and spiritual level. I barely feel physically tired after a heavy week of training because life is just SO good. Everything we ate was prepared at home and eaten outside overlooking a gorgeous view. It was sometimes difficult to be disconnected from the outside world without internet, though we did have our bberries, but it was also part of what made it feel so cleansing.

And now we're in MA where its back to balancing work, family and training. Its harder to get the workouts in but also nice to spend time with family. And yes, I have plenty of work to do... but I LOVE the work that I do :)

Here is a quick list of some clean and yummy meals from week 1:


papaya with yogurt and granola

huevos rancheros (eggs, beans, veggies on soft corn tortillas)

gluten free mickey mouse waffles with eggs and fruit


hummus and veggie wraps/ sandwiches
veggie burgers and salad
Hammer nutrition (when we trained through lunch)


gluten free pasta with tomato sauce, veggie meatballs and broccoli
veggie hotdogs with sweet potato wedges and sauteed kale
veggie burgers with arugula salad
tofu sauteed with sesame kale and baked sweet potato
taco night with black beans, soy chorizo, kale and avocado


chocolate hemp shake

And here is a glance of my training from week 1:

Monday- 45 min run, 2.5k swim, 45 min run
Tuesday- "Death Brick" 4 hour ride/ 2 hour run
Wednesday- rest
Thursday- 2.5 hour ride, 2.5k swim, yoga
Friday- 45 min run, 2.5k swim
Saturday- 2.5 hour run (18 miles at an 8:23 pace!)
Sunday- 4 hour mountain ride, 4k swim

(John at the top of one of the climbs)


swim- 11.5k
bike- 140 miles
run- 44 miles

total hours = 21


Monday, June 14, 2010

IMLP Final Push - Clean Eating in VT

One thing that John and I LOVE about training in VT is that its easy to eat super clean. We were here in May and we had a great training camp... partially because its amazingly beautiful, but also because we ate the perfect diet to support our training. Now we're back. Vermont is our first stop for our final push training camp for IMLP. John calls it "Ironmonk", which used to mean:

1) no girls
2) minimal distraction
3) clean eating
4) no girls

I told him if he left me for three weeks I might be married to someone else by the time he gets back, so he decided to invite me along to support him as his "personal assistant". Plus, I'm training a ton. I'm stoked because I love cooking and preparing healthy foods, I love supporting my triathlon man, and I love training. I also get to work from wherever we are. Its perfect, really.

So... what does perfect clean eating for a pro ironman and a holistic health nut look like? It's tons of veggies, clean and minimally processed vegetarian protein, just enough healthy carbs and very low sugar (when not training). The key here is simplicity. We aren't going to put time into making everything from scratch while we're both training so much. Instead, we found a store with a great health food section and we read our labels diligently. The less ingredients, the better. Our shopping list looked something like this:

- bananas, apples, papaya, pears, strawberries, peaches, nectarines, oranges, mango, watermelon
- broccoli, spinach, arugula, kale, beet greens
- cucumbers, carrots, corn, peppers, yams
- veggie burgers, veggie "meatballs", tofu, eggs, beans, tofu dogs, hemp shake, peanut butter
- brown rice, rice and bean pasta, gluten free bread, pumpernickel bread, healthy wraps
- puffins, granola, yogurt, gluten free pancake mix, real maple syrup, oat milk, soy milk, 53x11 coffee
- sesame oil, olive oil, umeboshi vinegar, turbinado sugar

This is everything we're eating. None of our meal prep takes more than 30 mins. I'll be posting some pics and meal ideas in the next few days... stay tuned to see how easy it is to eat healthfully while training yourself half to death :)

(My Loves both icing in the lake after a long trail run)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

More Rev 3 Pics

Me givin' some love to my #1 training bud

Headed out on the bike

Go Team HFWT (and CREW)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Rev3 Weekend of Mayhem

(Me and Phil at White Pond)

I arrived at HFWT on Friday and Phil and I immediately headed to White Pond for a beautiful swim. Then I got in a fight with a dog. The doggie was super cute so I wanted kisses. We were playing and it mouthed at me (in a playful way) but it was a puppy and my lip got cut open. I thought it wasn't a big deal until I talked or smiled and saw that I clearly needed to be stitched up. I got 5 stitches, though the needle to numb it was the worst part. Doctor's orders were "No swimming". But honestly, this weekend for me was about being with my friends and having a great time. That's what triathlon is for me. It's Phil and Kate and the rest of the CREW. I love training and racing, but I love it because of them.

(My pretty lip. Now I'm like Sally from Nightmare Before Xmas)

Then I did the math... a 70.3 minus the swim is a 69.1. I could totally do that! So at race reg I cleared it with the director and was allowed to jump in after the swim for a "catered training day". I actually had a great time! I LOVE spectating and I got to see my friends finish their swim, then I hopped on my bike and went for it. I was already DQ'd so I decided to play with some of my racing strategy. I would normally have a somewhat conservative bike for a good run but I decided to test myself on my bike this time. Who cares if I walk on the run?! It's just a training day. So I employed "The Strategy", which I can't talk about because its top secret. I CAN tell you that the first step to the strategy was to go to Strong Like Bull. I cut 35 minutes off my previous time for that bike course. I felt awesome.

My run started out great. I ran the first 4 miles at an 8 min pace and was holding back. Then I started to get sick from the antibiotic I had to take for my dog fight incident. I had to stop, walk, try to run, walk, dry heave, then run again. I decided to tough it out because I'm sure I'll feel terrible during IM at some point and this would toughen me up. I made it through with the slowest half-marathon time I've ever had... but I'm very happy with it!

(The new CREW kits and gear look super hot on Miss Murder... contact me to order some)

I can't say enough about Rev3. The bike course was gorgeous and the run course was the perfect run for me. I really wish I felt better because its the kind of course where I can fly past people the entire time with the rolling hills. I'm a strong "hill shuffler" and a FAST downhill runner. I can't wait to do the whole race next year! The post race food was impressive too. There were plenty of healthy choices for an almost vegetarian, wheat free athlete like me.

I also want to say congrats to my buddy, Bill Risch. This was his first HIM and also his longest swim (by far) without dying. He killed it! I'm psyched that he's hooked and he'll be joining us for more racing asap.

And lastly, I'd like to thank my sponsors. I couldn't have done this without you... HFWT, CrazyBitchWater and JohnHirsch.org. Love you guys!

I asked for guesses as to why I didn't swim. You guys think I'm such a badass :)

@holisticguru I heard u had swimmies and got caught with one of those hidden motors on the bike. U got away with the robot legs though"

@tallgirlky @holisticguru hmmm, two guesses: You wore a superfast, yet illegal, wetsuit? Your swimsuit was so cute, it was declared illegal!"

@Ironmanjay @holisticguru DQ'd for doping on whole foods and gaining a energy advantage on the compatition. Oh yea, then kicking the head ref u kno where"

@TexasDevin @holisticguru I heard you were DQ'ed because you lost your cool and punched an official in T2. Is this true? :)"

@ dylmcnic @holisticguru my guess is that you have no respect for the courage wolf."

@romsfou @holisticguru That sucks. They did not like your pocahontas look? ;-)"

@bryanhammer @holisticguru some kind of HTFU game gone wrong? wanted to take it easy on the competition and give someone else a chance to win the AG?"

@DollarBillRS @holisticguru you kicked a race official while doing a pas de chat"

@austinslide I'm gonna go with three guesses a) you forgot your wetsuit b) the organizers decided you were too awesome to swim c) you forgot how to swim :)"