tokyo running days

A marathoner / newbie triathlete's training blog.

Wednesday, June 16

Races in this summer

Due to cancellation of IM Japan, I ended up with entering three tri races. I never really wanted to do this many races.....

June 20, Sakata Oshin Race (Olympice distance)
July 11, Ironman Asia in Jeju (IM Japan replacement)
August 22, Suzu Triathlon (Swim 2km, Bike 100km, Run 23km)

My plan is;
Sakata >> go hard
Jeju >> go all out for Kona slot (prob. first and last chance for me)
Suzu >> fun race using leftover fitness from IM training


Thursday, May 20

2010 Niijima Triathlon

Last Saturday, (May 15, 2010) I went to Niijima Triathlon again and completed the race. Here is the race report I posted to Namban Forum.

Total 2:45:58 (7th women, 103rd overall)

I always like this Island Series tri, and this year, with no exception, I had a very good time with fellow Namban triathletes and supporters.

Swim 30:05 (136th, PB!)
The swim part is always my biggest challenge, especially this one was since I had to get over my trauma from the last year ( see my last year's report at ). The water was cold just like last year and waves were even higher, but I told myself, " After that, I finished 3.8k IM swim, also finished another Olympic distance tri and have been swimming at least 3 times a week since March. I am a better swimmer now, and I have a new wetsuit. I should be fine." Swimming to the first buoy was the hardest. I had to battle with the flashback from last year's bad memories. But after turning the first buoy, it all got easier and better. Just before the 2nd lap, I found Pia, a strong Finnish triathlete woman who sometimes trains with us, just in front of me. I tried to keep up with her and thanks to her, I could keep my concentration on just swimming. I finished my swim part with more than 5 minutes PB time.

Transition 1
I was too happy about my swim and may have lost concentration, but it took sooooo long. I passed Pia by over 1 minutes at the swim part, but she left way earlier than me. Many Namban supporters who witnessed my T1 pointed out if I was having a cup of tea or something....that's the one I should improve for my IM race. No teatime anymore.

Bike 1:27:21 (incl. T1 and T2, 124th)
I tried hard to catch Mary who left T1 about 2 minutes earlier than me, but during the 3-lap course, every time I saw her at the double back part, I had to face the fact that I didn't close any gap. She was so strong and finished the bike leg 3 minutes earlier than me....

Transition 2
I don't remember anything, but I must be, again, very slow....

Run 48:32 (68th)
Super hilly course! I couldn't believe they put a water station in the middle of the steep hill. I wonder who can take water properly since you have to breathe so hard. Anyway, I was still way behind Mary but wasn't giving up. At the turn around point of the first lap, I saw her and realised that it's way to go to reach her. All I could was just keep running, hoping to be able to catch her up. Finally I found her back at the 3k to go area and caught her at the last 2k or so. She made me work so hard!

BTW, I wonder if this was my hallucination, but during the run, I saw Kimm running barefoot and smiling....(he actually ran barefoot and passed some fast guys at the run leg, amazing!)

Special thanks to Phil for arranging the minshuku & karaoke and Leng, Meg, Arnaud, Alex and Gerard F. (all the way from Sydney) for the loud support!

Tuesday, July 14

Kamakura Rough Water Swim 5k




とりあえず岸側の足がつくところまで泳いでいき、足をついてストレッチ、マッサージ。棄権するかどうか迷ったものの、とりあえず痙攣がおさまってきたので泳ぎ続けることに。 この時点で時計を見ると既に1時間25分経過。。。まずい。距離はあと半分残っているのに、タイムアウトまであと1時間5分しかない。。。それでもいけるところまで行って、できればアイアンマンの距離3.8km以上は泳ごうと、沖へ泳ぎだす。



とっくに泳ぎ終わっている仲間が出迎えてくれた。私はVサイン。時計を見たら2時間41分も経ってた。タイムオーバーだけど、やっぱり5km泳ぎ切れたのはうれしい。自信になった。 首の後ろとわきの下はウェットスーツの擦れで大きな擦り傷。手首や足首はクラゲに刺された。なんかもう、満身創痍。ひどく日焼けもしてしまった。

5kmは甘くなかったね。でもでも、これで痙攣もこわくなくなった。いや、こわいけど、DNFしなくても乗り切れることがわかった。 泳ぎきった感触としては、スタミナ的には補給なしで問題なし(その後75分のトレイルランも問題なくこなせた)。だが、やはりもっと速く泳がないといけない。今回、8時間でマラソンを走る人たちの気持ちがちょっとだけわかった。


Wednesday, July 1

Murakami Triathlon, the mission completed

Last Sunday, I went out to Murakami for 51.5k triathlon with Ma to overcome Niijima swim DNF, and the mission was happlily completed. Here is the report I posted to Namban (my running club) list.
2:43:51 71st overall, 1st AG
S 35:59 131st
B 1:21:16 77th
R 46:36 51st
This race wasn't on my annual race calendar until I had a traumatic Niijima experience. I decided to do this because I just couldn't leave it without doing anything. Therefore, my mission for this race was to finish and I am happy to be able to do so this time.
The sea was very calm and flat, and thanks to the Kamakura swim with Jay, David and Ma a week ago, I didn't have fear in the water anymore. I started at the very end of crowd to avoid any brutal battle and made sure to myself to start very, very slowly. About 10 minutes after, I found myself feeling comfortable in the sea, and also picking up the pace a little by little. I comleted 1.5k without problem and even had 4 minute PB.
The course was mostly straight and flat, and all you need to cope with was the wind. I regret that I didn't bring Keren's DH bar that I have been keeping for a long time. But after the turn around point, we had fabulous tail wind all the time. I was also lucky to have a woman company all the time. I had to work hard to keep up with her. Without transition, I think my bike time was about 75minutes. (Need to work more on transition!)
The heat was the factor. Also I was afraid of having a cramp in my leg, but thanks to the electrolyte tab Mary gave me, it didn't happen to me this time. And maybe because of IM training these days, 10km run felt quite short for me, but it doesn't necessarily mean I could run faster, unfortunately.
I won my age group (out of only 5 people) and had 5kg of rice. Nice bonus! I like triathlons because of this! :-D

On the final note, thanks to Ma, Motozo, Meg, Adam, David S., Ben, Tony, Vanessa and Tomoko for sharing a good time there.

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Monday, June 8

Mt. Fuji Hill Climb

Yesterday, I did my first Mt. Fuji Hill Climb race. It's one of the biggest cycling events in Japan and more than 5,000 participants gathered in a park at north foot of Mt. Fuji. The weather turned out to be great and we could see gorgeous Mt. Fuji from the starting area as you see in the pic.

I like the colourfulness of bike races. It's fun to watch colourful bike gear and pricy bikes. Being always minority on the road, it's a nice feeling to see 5,000 cyclists at once and dominate whole road to 5th station of Mt. Fuji.

The course is about 25km all the way uphill to Mt. Fuji 5th station (go-gome), from 1,035m to 2,305m. It may sound tough, but ascent is very mild, there's no more than 8% slope, not like 15 % of Utsukushigahara. Still, you need some work to keep climbing for all the way 25km, but great scenary and cool fresh mountain air helped a lot.

After a 100 minutes of hard work, I finally reached the goal at the 5th station. Hundreds of racers who left me or passed me were already there, celebrating each other, eating, drinking and getting ready for descent.

This descent part is the most fun. I can say I climbed more than 1,000m because of this. You cannot race this part because it's too dangerous (I saw one accident on the way), but 25km all the way down hill with no car was such a thrill! It's the reward only for who complited the race.

My official time was 1:39:50, 14th in 36+ women category (out of 141 finishers, so I was top 10%).

This is highly recommendable bike race for beginners as well as experienced cyclinsts. They also allow flat handlebars and MTB's and I saw many bikes with small wheels. If you feel like doing something different next year, you should count on this.

The post-race udon was delicious!

Tuesday, May 26















Monday, May 25

Bike, swim and run weekend.

Saturday, 107km mountain ride from Sagami-ko to Yamanaka-ko out and back. Lots of hills, mostly ups for outwards and fun down hills for backwards. I saw gorgeous Mt. Fuji in Yamanaka-ko. I love mountain ride. Swam in the evening. 300m x 5 with wetsuit on. Tight, but managable. I haven't decided wheater ro buy new one or not.

Sunday morning, just went out to Yoyogi Park and ran 21k with iPod on. 6m30s/k pace. Took a swimming form lesson with Ma-san in the evening. It was good. I should take it every week from now.