Tuesday, June 26, 2007

IM CDA 2007

Picture 1: Me before the swim start. I was shivering in my wetsuit so I put on my gloves and kept on my shoes until the last possible minute.

Picture 2: Here I am running towards the finish line. Yes, it's true... I was actually running at mile 26 of the Ironman run.

Picture 3: The water before the swim start. If you look closely you might spot Joe, Ali, and Kelly at the front right side of the swimmers.

Picture 4: the super secret power food. Thanks to Meredith for the idea to make these. After a few iterations I found the perfect combo. It's a darn good thing b/c those tortilla's were about the only thing I was in the mood to eat on Sunday.


IM CDA: June 24th 2007
My first IM was CDA 2004, this year I returned to CDA for my 6th IM. Six Ironman in 3 years. I'm not the only person I know to has done that many but maybe for me that was one too many, who knows.
This one was definitely the toughest for me, mentally and physically. No need to share too many details but there are a few things worth mentioning, just in case they might help some others in the future. After all, "those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it."
As I mentioned, this race was tough for me and I think a lot of that has to do with what I was feeling on race day. It seemed like my entire body hurt and I was in a rut for about 90% of the race. That's a long time and although I did eventually get through it and enjoy the run it was taxing. I was not enjoying the day and that's what made it hard.
The days following the race were even harder for me. I guess you'd call it post-race depression. It's supposedly normal but nothing I've experienced after past races has felt as horrific as this.
I mention this because I think it's something many people might face at one point or another. The disappointment in not achieving a goal which you've focused on for a long time is hard to handle. So when you're setting goals and trying to accomplish them be sure to keep things in perspective. Try not to pressure yourself too much or you might not enjoy the journey as much.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Getting Ready

Michael packed up the Griffen last night while I worked on Dynamics HW. Tonight we finished putting all the piles into bags. Michael seemed in a bit of disbelief when he thought his pile of clothes was bigger than mine. Who knows... maybe he had a harder time deciding which IM, Marathon, or Jack and Adam's shirts were the ones to pack.

My excitement of today came from buying myself a nice sky blue J&A baseball cap. It should match the Glacier Blue CRV very well (we'll be getting that the day we return). Maybe it'll be good luck... or maybe the new L.U.C.K. rag shirt will be good luck. It's a vintage Sutherland HS powder puff t-shirt from my senior year of HS. I'll let you imagine what that could possibly stand for.

I also got to eat lunch with Colin (he had orientation today) and got a massage from Kevin this afternoon. All-in-all it was a pretty relaxing day.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Rain is back

I spoke too soon when I said the rainy season had passed. We got another burst of precipitation today. Impending doom was looming over head just as the Texas Iron run workout was leaving from J&A at 6:30 tonight. After a quick check of the radar (okay, multiple checks) it was decided that run practice was still on but it was going to be fast.
I set out with a goal of getting my fartlek run completed before the storm hit. Yippee, I met my goal and had fun doing it.
Overall, today's workouts seemed to be a lot of fun to me. At masters this morning Whitney assigned us 6x500 as snake. The pool is set up for long course so we got to swim up 50m, go under the lane line, then back in the next lane. It was super fun, especially when I got to do 500 pull as the second one. My goal was to finish my 4x500 (only 4 since I'm tapering) without being lapped by Amy. Didn't quite make it, she passed me at the final flags. But... she did have a head start so maybe that counts for something ;) Either way... there are some really speedy swimmers out there who seem to make it look so easy.
10 days left... trying hard to make it to the start line in good shape... so far I'm at 2 days w/o chocolate (excluding mint chocolate cliff bars). It might be hard to continue through tomorrow, it is Friday and Whole Foods bark is very hard to resist.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Time Management

I've always prided myself in being well organized and ahead of schedule for things that need to get done. In high school and undergrad I was the dork that had the assignments done days before they were due. I was the one who'd be in the library first thing in the morning on the weekends to be sure I'd get to bed early every night.
Things are a bit different now. It's 10pm on Sunday and I'm sitting down with my Dynamics homework, feeling behind schedule b/c I wanted to work on it yesterday but felt too tired from the brick workout. Of course, this homework isn't actually due until Thursday but in my mind I'm behind. Things just seem a lot different during this round of school. I'm trying to work, train for a triathlon, and go to school at the same time. No complaints here b/c I knowingly signed myself up to all this. Yet, I'm still looking forward to starting my taper tomorrow so I can have a bit more time to get back on top of my lab work and studies.
A big thanks to Michael for cooking dinner, going to HEB, and running all the other errands today. He also got some help from Joe when we realized our microwave bit the dust. It's 56lb and hangs above the level of my head so I wasn't going to be much help getting the old one down. (hm.... secretly I wonder if I could say that in this case it was an advantage to be short b/c I was just too darn small to help)

Being there for others

The following stories were forwarded to me and I thought I'd share them...

There are some important lessons to learn or remind ourselves of from stories from others. The lesson is written in the last line of each.


#1 - forwarded from Michael

A woman was flying from Seattle to San Francisco. Unexpectedly, the plane was diverted to Sacramento along the way. The flight attendant explained that there would be a delay, and if the passengers wanted to get off the aircraft the plane would re-board in 50 minutes.

Everybody got off the plane except one lady who was blind. The man had noticed her as he walked by and could tell the lady was blind because her Seeing Eye dog lay quietly underneath the seats in front of her throughout the entire flight.

He could also tell she had flown this very flight before because the pilot approached her, and calling her by name, said, "Kathy, we are in Sacramento for almost an hour. Would you like to get off and stretch your legs?" The blind lady replied, "No thanks, but maybe my dog would like to stretch his legs."

Picture this:
All the people in the gate area came to a complete standstill when they looked up and saw the pilot walk off the plane with a Seeing Eye dog! The pilot was even wearing sunglasses. People scattered. They not only tried to change planes, but they were trying to change airlines!
True story.... Have a great day and remember... Things are not always as they appear


#2 - forwarded from Teana

Some people understand life better. And they call some of these people "retarded".

At the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100 yard dash.

At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win.All, that is, except for one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times, and began to cry. The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed down and looked back. Then they all turned around and went back...every one of them.

One girl with Down syndrome bent down and kissed him and said, "This will make it better."
Then all nine linked arms and walked together to the finish line. Everyone in the stadium stood, the cheering went on for several minutes.

People who were there are still telling the story...Why? Because deep down we know this one thing: What matters in this life is more than winning for ourselves. What matters in this life is helping others win, even if it means slowing down and changing our course.

"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle."

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Bam... it's hot in Texas

A few years back I made the comment to some co-workers that Austin has a few distinct seasons. The rainy cold marathon training season (aka winter), which leads to the windy/ flower-filled season (aka spring), and the hot season (aka summer & fall). This year the rainy season seemed to last a bit longer and the flowers were out in full force. The flowers are always pleasant to see while riding and the crazy amount of rain we've had has been quite comical while we've had only 1 car.

Unfortunately, it appears the seasons shifted mid week and it has become brutally hot and humid this week. When I first moved to Austin in late may of 2000, I went for a run at lunch time and called Michael to tell him I didn't think I'd survive the summer. Over the past 7 years I've become more acclimated to the heat and I can now say with pride that I can still run well off the bike, even when it's hot out.

Today was my last longish brick before CDA... 4:20 ride + 1:00 run. It was blazing hot when we finished riding at noon and I was a wee bit less than excited about the run in the sun. But a scarfed down a banana and a bit of dark chocolate in transition and was off. To my delight it went well and I had one of my fastest times for my 'park loop.' As I was running along I told myself that I was out there 'getting it done.' Today's brick was good, it reminded me that I can run off the bike well no matter what the weather, confidence is always a good thing.

When I got home Michael had chopped up a water melon for me (yum) and was kind enough to show off his cell phone's abilities by shooting some pictures of me with my bright red face (see picture attached)

I think we've got 15 days until CDA... hopefully that will be enough time for someone to figure out a way to get me some chilled dark chocolate in T2... ;)

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Colin is growing up

When the phone rang the other night my brother had some great news to share; he got his acceptance letter from UT. He'll be transferring into the Civ-E department this fall.

As I walked down the hall of Belmont today I was thinking of how strange this is. 10 years after graduating from high school (in rochester NY) my brother and I will both be atteding the same university, UT. If you don't know us you might not be so suprised but there is a lot of irony in the fact that he'll be in the engineering department while I'm in the kinesiology department.

It made me realize that you never know where you'll be in 10 years time. In my wildest dreams I don't think I would've guessed Colin and I would be where we are. So, if you don't know what your future will hold the best idea is to enjoy every minute of the journey and hope for great suprises along the way.


Michael & I are very proud of your hard work in school.

Note: the attached picture was taken at the Dash for Downs last year. My brother was nice enough to volunteer. Of course, we had a hard time getting him away from the moon walk.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Don't try anything "new"

After my nice crash in P-ville my bars were a wee bit messed up. So, I left the Griffen at the shop earlier in the week and picked it up when I worked yesterday. It has some nice new bar tape on the new-ish handle bars and it looks sweet.

Yesterday, I took a couple of minutes to set it up on the bike stand to check the adjustment of the new bars. Zane was nice enough to help me out and he also mentioned a couple of other things he'd noticed. One was the angle of my saddle, it was pointed down ~7 degrees. This is mainly due to some issues I've had in the past but after a few minutes of chatting I was starting to get concerned that I had something set up wrong. So I asked to point it up a bit, he agreed to put it to -3.5 degrees.

That was a very very very bad idea! My ride today was one of the most painful rides I've ever head. My ishial tuberosity was in such pain that I wanted to get off the bike more than I ever have in a ride. So, I took a detour from my route and went over to J&A to put the saddle back. It was a lot better on the ride home... I definitely learned my lesson