Wednesday, October 27, 2010
A few things from yesterday...
1. I am now a member of the Capital bike share! Charles got his membership key, and the price goes up after October 31, so I joined too. Even if I don't use it much, I believe in the idea so it was worth the money. The hard part though, is the helmet issue. Sometimes I think it might be easier to hop on a bike and go to my destination, however I don't plan on carrying a helmet with me everywhere I go. This is especially important to me right now as my friend Ryan was hit on Saturday, on MacArthur Blvd, a very bike friendly area we frequent often. No worries, he is okay, just a bit sore and scrapped up.
And there is a large difference between riding and hopping on a capital bike share bike - but there is a common factor, the car. I plan on buying another helmet to keep at work and it may just become part of my work bag. Stylish!!
AND, I kept harping on Charles to get helmet as we debated the pros, cons, data, stats, etc. However, I took a pretty bad tumble a few years back, broke my elbow - after landing on my head. So, it's really a no argument with me. And I am happy to say that Charles is now the proud owner of a nice new blue helmet.
2. Yoga Steve! I am really starting to LOVE Tuesday's. Yoga Steve just puts me in a good mood. I may not be making the progress I would like, but slowly I will get there. After all, what can I really expect since I go once a week.
3. Swimming. Yes I went to yoga, but I also went swimming too. For some reason, I was just in a really good mood - unlike prior swims. The lanes were crowded, due to the Masters team I am apart of but was not swimming with which took up half the pool, but AJ, Toby and I had a really good swim. 3100 meters good!
4. Times, they are changing. I was supposed to go to watch the high heel race, but I knew the week would be busy with little time to workout. And after my wonderful weekend in Minnesota/Wisconsin - I needed the workout. So, I chose to swim instead of drinking, eating and watching the race. Luckily Ang, who was throwing the party, completely understood, as she is also a triathlete and has been super busy too. It really helps when friends are so understanding about skipping things for workouts. Especially because that will start happening more and more as I train.
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
My last run wasn't the greatest, and with the amount of food I ate and beer I drank last weekend, a run was very much needed. I thought I would focus on my cadence, as my next appointment with R on my running is coming up. I think I am doing okay, because it still hurts my legs in different ways when I concentrate on all the things R told me to do. I also decided on the treadmill so I could help control my speed, as I worked on cadence and posture.
Here was the downside I wasn't expecting - it was super hot in the gym. I mean, I walked in and started to sweat. And sweat buckets. BEFORE I even stepped on the treadmill.
And I felt a little like Goldilocks. The first treadmill I stepped on had no power. The second treadmill I stepped on turned on, but had this random clicking noise that just would not do for a jog. The third treadmill was just right.
But then the jog started. It was okay at first, but it just wasn't happening. Or happening well. My guess is all the fried and beer consumed in the weekend started to rebel.
But I went. And I probably lost 5 pounds in water weight. Oh, and I had some nice quality time with the foam roller.
Monday, October 25, 2010
1. There was no race. A fair share of walking, but no race.
2. I had a great time with Erica, her husband Chris, and their dog Jasper. Not Chief - that was their roommate's dog in college. So close!
3. The stadium is beautiful. It was really great to see a college football game in an outdoor stadium. The team on the other hand... well, the stadium was nice. AND, to they had cheese curds! They were listed on the menu as "Minnesota Cheese Curds" (vs. Wisconsin cheese curds), but I ate them anyway and they were delicious! And helped make up for the game I was watching in the wonderful stadium.
4. Big 10 Subs... Oh how I missed you.
5. The sweatshirt was a bit harder to find. I didn't find anything until Sunday when we had some time to kill before my flight - so Erica and I went to this little mall. There I found a nice little yellow Minnesota Golden Gopher Sweatshirt. I did manage to find some mittens and a cute little visor too at the Union. The Union was under construction for 3 of the 4 years I was there, so it was really nice to walk around and see what could have been...
Overall, it was a great weekend. The weather was a bit overcast, but little rain - so I was happy. It would have been great if the Gophers won, but really, that would have been expecting a lot. Hudson has some great food. And beer. And it was just what I needed.
Oh, and of course there was one more picture I needed.
Friday, October 22, 2010
- No RACING!!! This is a pure long weekend vacation.
- I am going to visit my friend Erica, her husband Chris and their dog Chief (I think that's his name)
- We are going to the Minnesota/Penn State game. The Gophers got a new outdoor stadium last year and have really wanted to go back to see a game. They may not be the best football team, especially after firing their coach mid-season, but rumor has it that Penn State isn't too great either. Should be a fun game!
- BIG 10 SUBS!! (Which really, is the number 1 thing I am excited about.) This place started my sandwich obsession. When I was in high school and Arin (my brother) was at the U, I would make him bring me home a sub every time he came back. It's really the reason I went to school there.
- I need a new Minnesota sweatshirt. And hat. And maybe mittens.
I am just really excited to go back, have a relaxing weekend with a great friend, cheer on a horribly team that I love dearly, eat good food I have missed, and have a few drinks.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
To try and get some clarity, I couldn't get to the pool, so I went for a run. I am still trying to work on form, I need to start working on keeping my HR down, and I would like to burn some calories to make up for my poor eating choices lately. Putting all of that together does not equal a great run. But, it didn't suck either and I am glad I went.
Also, it was successful in distracting me from thinking about work, my career, and what I should be doing with my life - even if it was only for 3 miles in under 40 minutes.
Oh, I almost forgot. I totally bailed on swimming last night to start packing for my trip tomorrow. I did get start some packing, but I spent the majority of the evening cooking - so when I get back, I have healthy(ier) food choices.
Using Emily's blog, I made this little number, and this one for a total of 11 meals! The best part, my enchiladas even looked like this picture, so I didn't have to take one of my own! And if I can make it and taste good - so can you. Give it a shot!
But the best part of the night, it is Week o' Bacon at Restaurant 3, in other words, the perfect way to celebrate Jess's birthday. I started off with the Bacon Martini and Charles started with the Bacon on a Stick. Good times.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
I was still pretty sore from Sunday's kick butt hike, but knew I should do something. Running was out. I couldn't drag myself to the pool, and went out with Jess on Monday and had a board meeting on Tuesday. Bike - no, not yet.
Then Charles reminded me that it was Tuesday. Yoga STEVE!! So off to yoga I went.
It was a pretty tough class, but so good. I was dripping sweat within 20 minutes and had some great stretching poses. Yoga Steve kept coming over to fix my poses - aka, made them much harder. But I was really happy because I made progress on one pose - Shoulder stand to plow. My should stand was much higher with straighter legs, and when I moved to plow, my toes were super close to touching the ground!!! Yes, Yoga Steve did come over and help but still - it was progress. My hips and hamstrings still need a lot of work, but I am slowly getting there. Now that I am around more, I will hopefully be able to make this a weekly event again.
And maybe some people (*cough* Charles *cough*) can make it to class with me...
Sunday, October 17, 2010
I was originally scheduled to head back to Cambridge, MD to do a ride with Diane and Mary Elizabeth (and someone else too but she had to work on her new basement). But, I just could not talk myself into hot/flat/windy riding - again. For the one hundred thousandth time. So Diane and Mary Elizabeth let me off so I didn't have to ride in hot/flat/windy again.
Instead, I went hiking. It was the most beautiful (and windy!!) day and it had been awhile since I went for a hike. And the last time I went on a real hike (not the stuff Molly took me on in Colorado or Sarah took me in Atlanta) in the area, I took a bit of a tumble. So, I was ready to go again.
Here is the 'problem'. I went with a bunch of triathletes. I think they thought the first part up the mountain was a race. Seriously - this was no casual hike. I have never passed so many groups, and never NOT been passed before the rock scramble. It got to the point where I just let everyone go and figured I would make it to the top eventually. When I made that decision, I started to enjoy the hike a bit more. There were a few moments when I was completely alone - my friends where too far in front, and the group we passed was too far behind. It was very peaceful.
Eventually, we hit the rocks and everyone was waiting for me - and the fun really started. Here is Sandy crawling up rock.
We had a mini break and checked out this beautiful views, had a Snickers, and had a random puppy come visit from nowhere. We hope he belonged to someone...
Then there was more fun. And by fun, I mean rocks to climb up. And when I say climb up, I mean get a push from Ty. I think some of us would still be stuck on the mountain if Ty wasn't there. And Julia didn't seem to mind (he he he).
Anyway - there was only one point in time where I missed Egypt road. The top of Old Rag never seemed to get any closer.
But, we finally made it to the top, and we sure do know how to celebrate.After a lovely lunch on a mountain, and it was pretty windy up there, we started to make our way back down the mountain. I can't believe I am going to admit this, but at times, we actually all ran down parts of the road. It was actually easier on the knees and quads. Yes, I know that does sound crazy - but it was true.
And of course, because we like to pose for pictures, there was another beautiful opportunity. Notice how we are all standing... Taste the rainbow?
Even though we raced up the first part, and I needed a few pushes up some of the rocks, it was a really great time. Thanks to Ty, Julia, Alejandro, Christian, Carolina and Sandy for a great day.
Oh, and according to my Garmin, which did stop a few times, it was close to 9 miles in 4 and a half hours. All the notes say it closer to a 5 and a half hour hike... Sill fast people!
Friday, October 15, 2010
The conversation to follow went like this:
Emily “It kind of looks like a snot rocket”
Me “Eww, it kind of does. But I don’t snot rocket in that coat”
Emily “I like how you qualify that with not in that coat”
Me “well, it’s true. I don’t snot rocket in that coat”
Emily – slowly shakes her head and walks away.
Oh, and if you didn’t notice the hyperlink on Emily’s name, she has a food blog. It’s really good and she does a great job of explaining the ingredients and directions in terms everyone can understand. She knows I am cooking stupid so when I have made a few recipes, I let her know what I did wrong so she can better explain the instructions. Or just laugh at me. Or be proud when I bring in the left overs and they look like her pictures. It’s a win win for everyone!
Thursday, October 14, 2010
But the best part, swimming gives me a chance to think. Some people clear their heads by going for a run or walk, I often do by swimming. Somewhere during the 6 x 250's I was reminded of the conversation Carolina and I had as we were laying out on the beach this past Saturday. She is one of 8 readers, and a friend, so she knows my ups and downs as of lately. I thought of our conversation and a few things clicked with me.
I have been letting a lot of things that are out of my control get to me. Other peoples successes on the course compared to what I do on the course, responding (or not) to emails/texts/calls, my director saying he trusts in me and my work opinion - most of the time.... Okay, maybe I could work harder on that last one but hopefully you all get my point. I need to find that happiness within my self a bit more than I have lately - and for some reason, tonight it clicked a bit. I was happy with cutting my workout short because I was happy I went in the first place. I had queso for dinner because I like queso.
I am going to take my happy place, hope it sticks around for awhile, stop my rambling blog post, and go to bed.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I ran into Meaghan in the locker room and it was great to catch up with her, even if it put me off my time frame by a few minutes. After some satellite issues with my Garmin (another few minutes off my timeline), I was finally on my run.
My route is pretty standard to The Mall, but it is dependent on the lights. Today, it took me down Constitution Ave, where I saw someone blocking me on the sidewalk. I looked up and it was my friend J!! (And I forgot to ask if I could use her name, so J it is). I stopped my watch, took out my headphones and away we chatted. It was so great to catch up, as I haven't seen her in about 10 months. I found out I have 8 readers because she reads this blog (Hi J!!) and had super exciting news (so happy for you!!). It was a great surprise and did cut my workout back a bit more - but I wouldn't have changed a thing. It also put a little pep in my step.
The rest of the afternoon didn't get much better on the work side, but I was in a much better mood. I even made it to the pool for a short swim. Because I had a (short) wog today, I kept my swim short. I am still a bit sore from Sunday, which I know is a bit sad, but I have a very sore left hamstring and lots of bruises. It was just nice to say hi to everyone, and stretch out for a relaxing swim.
So, I am counting this as half a run and half a swim which equals 1 full workout.
Monday, October 11, 2010
We all woke up casually, had a relaxing and tasty breakfast before Lindsey, Carolina, Sandy and I headed out to Quarryville, PA for our Warrior Dash.
Where to start - I guess with the fact that we were clean, at one point.
Running a tad late, we missed our 2 o'clock wave, and just missed the 2:30 wave. Luckily, the last wave started at 3, so we were good to go. After we checked our gear bags, looked at the costumes, we lined up at the start.
This is when I started to get a bit nervous. These ladies are a bit faster than I am, and even though they said they would stick with me, I still felt bad. Plus, I was surrounded by costumes and I had a strong suspicious that they would be fast than me as well.
But before I knew it, the countdown started, fire went off, and we were on our way. The ladies were great and stuck by my side as we did our first mile before our first obstacle - the "tunnels of terror". Next was the "tanker trouble" where we had to climb over 4 trucks. There was a window to step on and a rope to pull yourself up. And on the first one, as I was figuring it out, Lindsey pushed my a$$ up, which wasn't really needed, but I think she just wanted to grab my a$$ (and I told her I would write that for all the world (or my 7 readers) to see). After the third truck, on the way down, I slipped and fell hard on my butt. Of course to the laughter of others - and myself. I proceeded to fall on the last one too. There was a "hell's hills" and hay bales next. Then the cargo nets! This was fun. Brought back the inner child in all of us.
A water stop (much needed), some wooden planks, a maze to crawl through, some logs to jump over, and another tunnel/trench thing, then came the water and mud - "Breathless bog" is what it was called and it was described as "trudge through waist-deep water over logs". Carolina and I were first through and missed Lindsey sitting on the log, and rolled backwards. Here is Sandy consoling the very wet Lindsey.
By this point, there was TONS of mud so it made the barricades a bit slippery to go over. This was followed by another mud pit - which wasn't as deep as I thought, so when I jumped in, I fell right over. AGAIN. At this point, Carolina pointed out that the holograms weren't working as I kept falling over. But it was all in good fun. The next part was probably the hardest - a vertical climb, totally covered in mud. We would take 1 step, and just slide back down. Somehow we all made it up and all that were left was the "Muddy Mayhem" - scramble through a mud pit under barbed wire and the "Warrior Roast" - a leap over fire.
I don't think words can describe the last two obstacles - so here are some pictures.
But the best is this finish picture. I think Lindsey was just ready to be done.
It was such a great time. There was some blood. Lots of bruises. Piles of mud. And countless laughs.
Oh, and some totally kick a$$ warrior hats.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Friday night, Sandy, Carolina and I headed down to Dewey Beach for some relaxing time. Plenty of fun stories, most not appropriate for the blog, followed by an amazing dinner in Rehobeth. That got us to our house a bit late and it was apparently an early night as the house was silent when we arrived.
After the bikers headed out, it just left Sandy, Carolina and I in the house. We headed out and Sandy and Carolina went for a run, and I went in search of coffee. It was so quiet and peaceful and I just enjoyed strolling around the streets of Dewey. Once I found an iced latte, off to the beach I went.
I took my shoes off, had my coffee, iPod, and just walked. It was wonderful. Watching the waves, dogs play in the water, oh - it was just perfect.
Some time later, Carolina and I met at the house and headed back to the beach as Sandy finished her long run. Caro and I were only out for maybe 90 minutes but I got FRIED on my back. It was Sandy's bday weekend celebration, so we met her back at the house to celebrate in style.
This was followed by a beach style lunch and a few beers. Finally, we headed back to the house and the century riders finally started trickling in. C and R did a great job with the house, BBQ, food picks, and everything else.
Overall, I think everyone had a great ride, run, or relaxing day. And I was very happy to not be on my bike :-)
Friday, October 8, 2010
Last night was going to be my first masters swim practice - which AJ had me join in May, as our CUA club swims would be over. I thought it was a great idea so last night was going to be the night I started. But, Toby and Jen wanted to swim too, and they are not part of the Masters team (which takes up 4 of the 8 lanes at Wilson pool), so we hopped into a different lane and got started.
Right around 7:10, this a-hole guy jumps into the lane and start steam rolling over everyone. And yes, he was wearing a bright pink swim cap (and no, it wasn't Jimmy) and will be called Pink Cap Man (PCM). He just made everyone uneasy and put me in a cranky mood - considering we were having a good time swimming (compared to my attitude on Monday) this pissed me off even more. About 2000 meters in, I got a wicked cramp in my right foot. PCM did another unnecessary splashy flip turn, and that was it. It was either punch him in the face or get out. So I hopped into the hot tub where I ran into a few tri club people.
When Toby, AJ, and Jen joined me in the hot tub, they said that PCM tried to chat them up and be nice. Whatever. PCM, I hope I never see you again!
Now, I am just waiting for the hours to tick away until I can meet up with Sandy and Carolina to head down to Dewey beach. While others are doing a century ride, I will relax and enjoy the beach.
And Sunday, Sandy, Carolina, Lindsey and I are off to nowhere PA for our little 3.15 of "hellis miles". For some reason, back in July, I thought this was a good idea...
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
I didn't have anything long sleeved or pants stashed away in my cube - so when it was time for my wog, the treadmill it was. It's been awhile so I didn't mind it too much. I was bothered by the fact that when I got there they were all full, so put my name on the list, sat on a bike for 10 minutes, and once one opened up, I looked next to me - she had been on there for 50 minutes! RUDE! That is not gym or treadmill etiquette.
Anyway, the wog was rough. I was working on my cadence and body position, but my legs were not having it - especially my hamstrings. I think they need a bit more recovery. And the fact that I am on my 4th Nalgene (32 oz of water each) without frequent ladies room stops, means something.
But overall, I feel better :-)
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Sometimes, being with really REALLY fast, talented, and pretty people - sucks. As much fun as I had this weekend, once I got back, and I saw pictures and results, everything kind of shifted. These people are awesome people. Never make me feel bad about my size or speed. It's all a self confidence thing. And most of the time, I am fine with where I fit into the tri world. But I have never been surrounded by people trying to qualify for worlds, win the overall events, and multiple age group wins. Me, I was last. Sometimes it's just a bit hard.
Last night I went for a swim with Toby (won her age group on Saturday), AJ (just got back from Du worlds and came in 4th overall this weekend) and Jen (former collegiate swimmer, about to start tri's and swims back stroke faster than I swim free). I got all snappy half way through the workout and just couldn't snap out of a bad head space.
Also, how is it October 5th? What happened to summer when I was supposed to lose all my "I injured my back last year" and snowpocalypse weight?
Anyway, it's Tuesday and I did go to yoga Steve for the first time in a month. I managed to make a semi healthy dinner of whole wheat pasta and roasted veggies. I cleaned my kitchen (but not my living or bedroom). That all helped. Typing this out for you 7 readers helps too. I almost want to delete this post, but I also want to remember - that I can feel this way, and move on. Because I will, snap out of this and move on.
Monday, October 4, 2010
Once the race was over, Angela and I headed back to my car to discover a flat rear left tire. Does anyone find the irony in the fact I keep getting flats! If not on my bike, than my car... It had enough air to get to Exxon and fill it up. I was hoping it was just a fluke...
I got to hang out with Karen, her family, and her super cute niece: and if you know me, you know how I really feel about kids, but this one is pretty darn cute.
I got back to my car and the tire did not hold the air. After an hour of sitting in a parking lot, the PSI was back down to 20 - not good.
Cheeseburger in Paradise. This was our celebration destination. It was so much fun to hang out with everyone after the race. And yes, that is me with 2 super fast guys, who are also on the board with me, and a very large tube of beer. Let's just say I was very happy my stomach was better.
We thought we would check out the 'official' post party - which was 5 miles away. Once we got there, it was smoky and no one else was there. Fail.
We had a few drinks at an outside bar and headed to a dance club. Yes, that is correct, we went dancing. And let me just say, triathletes can't dance! But, we had the best time. We formed our own circle, and danced our butts off. How we managed to do that, after being up so early and having a race - I have no idea. But with more than half the board at the club, tons of members, we decided that not only are we the faster club, we are the hotter/most bad a$$ club around.
Of all the guys who offered to change my tire on my car, not one answered my call or text in the morning.
I was driving by myself.
I was caravanning with 2 other cars of people.
Poor Julie. I got a call from Ang, her passenger, saying that an oil light was on. And according to the Audi owner's manual, if that light was to go on, you are to immediately get off the road. We stopped in some small town in NC, Warsaw (?) and started to unload Julie's car into my car, and Abby's car. I don't know what we would have done if we weren't caravanning together. And Julie's car was towed away...
Having company in my car for the rest of the ride. Including a trip to Dairy Queen. And as we were about to pull out, another car of tri club people pulled in. And I guess as they were leaving (after we all left), another car of club people pulled in. Too funny that 4 cars all pulled into the DQ. I think we should approach them as a merchant partner...
It rained the ENTIRE way home. The poor bikes. Especially Blain who was so clean!! But he will be cleaned again soon enough...
I couldn't have asked for a better weekend. Well, I take that back. I did miss Diane's bday girls weekend - all would have been better if they were different weekends. Anyway, even with getting sick, my legs giving out on the bike, the club coming in second, a flat (car) tire, Julie having to leave her car in NC - I had a great time. I met some very awesome people that are a part of our club and I am even more proud to be a member and represent them on the board.
And now, my 'official' season is over. I still have a few events, but no more races. Before I know it, IM Moo will be my number one focus. And that makes me very VERY happy.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
After an early dinner, it was an early bedtime for an early alarm. Transition closed at 7:30 for the Myrtle Beach Triathlon and Half Max, my wave was at 7:33, and there was very limited parking.
Julie, Angela and I got up, had breakfast and were off.
I ran into Brianna right away, which was awesome because she is fun to chat with. We are all setting up our transition areas, trying to get our tent/food down to the finish area, and all the other stuff you do before a race when the race director (RD) called everyone over.
Then he made the dreaded announcement. The swim was cancelled. NNNNOOOO!!!!!!!! It's the one thing in triathlon I really like - and am 'good' at. Because of all the rain, the bacteria in the Inter coastal water way was too high, something about ecoli, so they called off the swim. :-( Yes, it was better for everyone's safety - but still! So, there was a time trial start, with a T1 time.
I was with a bunch of our tri club people, which was the best way to past the time. Once it was my turn, I ran through the transition to the cheers of our club members doing the International and sprint distance courses. I grabbed Blain and headed out onto the first loop of the course (which was shaped like an H so you knew who was behind).
Things started off okay. I had the chance to look for lots of people and towards the end of the first loop I started seeing more and more DC Tri jerseys. It was a lot hotter than I expected. And the wind was not fun - again. I am really tired of flat, windy, and sunny courses!!
Loop two is where things started to go wrong. I had already stopped once to help a guy from the club with a flat (he sent me off as his tire wouldn't hold CO2). On one windy section, I saw 2 DC Tri jerseys, pulled over to see if they needed help (and I wanted the break). They were set and I went on my way. At the turn around, I had a tail wind for awhile and my body just started to not be happy. I checked behind me, there was no one, I got as close to the grass as I could, and littered.
All I kept thinking was to finish. Just finish. I was in a division of 1, and I could do this. That helped and eventually, 3 hours, 26 minutes, and 56 seconds later, I was done. And even with the 2 stops, wind, littering, and my legs rebelling - that is my fastest 56 mile split. I don't know if it really counts because there was no swim, but I will take it anyway.
I stumbled around a bit, grabbed a Sprite, and headed to the ladies room. After I littered a bit more, in the proper place, had the Sprite and a roll, I felt much better. Just in time to celebrate our guys coming in first, second, third and fifth OVERALL for the International race, and Janie coming in second and AJ coming in fifth OVERALL. Oh, and for the sprint, Steve and Toby won their divisions, Angela came in third, and a bunch of other people placed too. I am friends with fast people!
To our sadness, all this fastness wasn't enough to bring home the championship. Stupid Columbia Missouri club won, again. We are calling some shenanigans as the RD sounded like he played some favorites - but we are not sore losers. We did really well and I am so proud of our club.
Friday, October 1, 2010
Ang, Karen and I chatted for a bit until it was time for Ang and I to rack our bikes and head back to our hotel. We had just enough time to meet a few others to hit the beach and go for a nice warm up swim.
Swimming in the ocean - AWESOME! It was perfect. No wetsuit, fun waves, easy sighting, and just felt good. It was pretty great. I didn't swim long, just enough to embarrass myself because of my horrible tan lines from last week, and feel pretty comfortable with my swim.
After that, it was back to our hotel and got ready for dinner. But first, this is the view from our balcony. Pretty nice huh?!?!?!
Tomorrow is race day! Again...