Workout Wednesday – 249 Days to Go

Workout WednesdayMarch – the month of much more momentum- marches on, and I with it. I’m trying not to freak out that there are less than 250 days left until this IRONMAN happens. In the meantime, here are this week’s workouts:



Bike speedwork

I now have a heart rate monitor, so one more number to obsess about (and one more electronic to forget to charge.)

I went out too hard, then the wind picked up toward the end and I was hurting.

This ride was oddly uncomfortable – my wrists hurt, my tailbone hurt and by the end of the second loop it was clear that I had missed a couple spots with the aquaphor (I told my coach that if my heart rate seemed high during my break it was because it was my first attempt at discreetly applying aquaphor in public.)

I’m really having issues with cramping. I had to slow way down near the end of this ride because my feet, calves, and quads were cramping and I was coasting to try to work it out.


Sweet merciful day off!


Long walk

Sometimes I’m slower than expected and I don’t know why.  Today I know exactly why.  First of all, I’ve been struggling with sleep (I have insomnia sometimes and it’s been kicking my ass this week) I laid down at 10pm last night so I could get 8 hours of sleep but only got about two to three hours total sleep.  I was also in pain the entire way – usually I have pain/tightness in the side of my calves that goes away after the first mile but even though I kept stopping and stretching it just stayed the whole time and then lower back pain kicked in so every stride would have two sharp pains attached.  It was delightful. Every time I would try to push faster everything would tighten up and I would have to slow down. In the last two miles I actually felt like I might fall asleep standing up.  It sucked, but I finished it.


Bike speedwork

I felt like this went pretty well, the wind wasn’t as bad as last week until it kicked up a bit at the end. I replaced my leaking hydration backpack and got properly hydrated so I didn’t have the cramping issues that I’ve been having.

Open water class – postponed again, stupid water quality rating.


Swimming Long Sets

These went fine, speed is still good, this went by really fast, itchiness is still annoying but the special lotion makes it a bit better during the swim and the vitamin C rinse makes it all better immediately after. Still looking forward to open water.  Another swim in the training bank.


I was supposed to focus on drinking every 10 minutes and eating every 30 on this ride. I did hydrate every 10 minutes which meant that I didn’t have any cramping which was a relief. The eating didn’t go so well.  The first chew didn’t settle, the subsequent peanut butter and rice ball made it worse.  I threw up at the first turnaround and did the rest on water only (or as my cyclist friend said “Pan y agua senza pan”).  I felt tired from the beginning and the wind shifted so that I went out with a head wind and finished with a headwind which should be illegal.


Strength Work

I love strength workouts so much I want to marry them and have their tiny strength workout babies.

Speedwalk Speedwork

This went pretty well. Focus continues to be an issue – I’ll realize that my mind wandered and that I slowed down.  This was the fastest I’ve been – maybe ever – but at least in the last few months. I remembered something from dance that helped me.  My knees hyper-extend naturally and so I have a tendency to keep them straight (which feels bent to me because they aren’t hyper-extended.)  My dance coach noticed that when I didn’t have my knees bent enough I had less power because I was using smaller muscles as the primary movers and because I wasn’t able to properly use my core.  I started to wonder if I was having that same issue with my speedwalking and so tonight I focused on keeping my knees bent and it definitely helped, though it felt super weird which indicates to me that it’s been an issue for a while.

I feel like I may have made this “discovery” in the past and forgotten.  I need to keep this top of mind because it makes a massive difference.  There was definitely something going wrong with my Garmin.  The miles weren’t correct – the first was short and the third was long  (I know because this is the loop I usually do)  Also, on mile one there was a period when the Garmin said that I was doing 4 minute miles which, let’s be honest, I couldn’t do if I had a rocket pack strapped to my ass. Still, I’m happy with this workout and with March, the month of much more momentum!

Like this blog?  Here’s more cool stuff!

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About danceswithfat

Hi, I’m Ragen Chastain. Speaker, Writer, Dancer, Choreographer, Marathoner, Soon to be IRONMAN, Activist, Fat Person.
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8 Responses to Workout Wednesday – 249 Days to Go

  1. gsantollo says:

    Hey check out for pains. I use it less frequently now but a few years ago I used it on some muscle/tendon or whatever “pains” all season, be it knee or shoulder

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! I’ve definitely used it for other injuries and it worked well, but we can’t seem to find a way that it can support me with this – the problem is that the underlying muscles tighten up and then I have to stop and rest to get them to let go. After I do that once it usually solves the problem, but the times when it doesn’t are pure hell.


      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m a big fan of KT tape too, except I find it doesn’t stick very well to my skin (I’ve used it on and off for Achilles tendinitis and plantar fasciitis).

    I’m always intrigued to read about your training and how you’re being coached to understand the hydration and nutrition tips during a race. I stick to smaller distance races (for many reasons, but one of which is) because I have no clue how to eat and drink properly for race day when the event is more than two hours of exertion. It’s very interesting to me to read about your (and others’) experiences with the body-in-motion rejecting food. I also find it extremely difficult to hydrate on my bike unless I am completely stopped. Road bike is easier to hydrate on but race bike? Forget it.

    Lastly, I think it’s a huge strength that you know your body so well and that you’re able to analyze your performance on a run/walk and figure out that your ability to hyperextend is causing you issues when you engage in an activity that isn’t dance. Super interesting and a salient point toward body awareness.


    • Thanks Amy,

      First, I realized that I made a typo (I know, I’ll give you a minute to get over your shock 🙂 I was actually intended to eat every 30 minutes, not every 20. Either way, I’m listening to a book by Dean Karnazes and he talks about eating a Large Hawaiian style pizza with extra everything and an entire cheesecake without stopping on a 100+ mile run and all I could think was “Who the fuck can eat pineapple and dairy and then run?”

      As far as hydrating on the bike, I took it in stages. Reaching for bottles doesn’t work for me so initially I would make stops to drink, but I didn’t like to stop more than once per ride so I would get super dehydrated. So I went to the hydration backpack which has worked great, I can now even continue to pedal while drinking (not an accomplishment for a lot of people, but an accomplishment for me.) Are you in aero on your race bike? That people can drink through that straw seems like magic to me!



  3. My mom keeps trying to get me into this racewalking stuff:
    I’m skeptical, but have you tried it? Or is this what you already do?


  4. lsstrout says:

    I never thought about hyperextension causing problems like this! You never know what someone else’s body is doing.


  5. karenashg says:

    Oh my gosh, the direction-switching wind… That is so awful and unfair. Not only should it be illegal, I’m pretty sure it’s prohibited by the Geneva Convention.

    Re: riding and eating–that is yet another element of training. Unless you have an iron gut, part of what you’re doing is training your stomach to digest on the go. It does get better! Pay attention to what sounds good to you–myself, I start gagging on sweet stuff pretty soon, but can do salty/savory for a lot longer. Fritos are one of my bike power foods, as well as Costco trail mix. Or anything that is fresh fruit (unfortunately, watermelon slices don’t fit in my jersey pockets very well…)


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