Tri Diva Reunion Event? Hell, yeah!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!!

Twas the day before Christmas, and Jenn was at home
Beginning vacation by writing this poem
Still in her pajamas and typing away
She tried to think of the right words to say

The gals on this blog are a strong group of women
Who spend their time run/walking, biking, and swimmin'
So what can she say that hasn't been said?
What can she type that hasn't been read?

Donna went solo, our brave pioneer
It's gonna be great to Tri with her this year!

Lynn walked the walk, though her knee, it resisted
Yet with a smile, through the pain she persisted

As Lesli cried "MOMMY!!!!" we laughed and we cried
Her joy, and her parents', was quite hard to hide

There's more than one reason Alana was glowing
A triple triathlete without even knowing!

Every step Courtney took felt like walking on nails
But she came with a mission, and she refused to fail

Jenn smiled as the memories came flooding back,
And can't wait for Austin -- TriDivas Attack!!!!

So she screamed from the rooftops for all y'all to hear,
Merry Christmas, TriDivas! Let's kick ass this year! :)

Sunday, December 7, 2008

How Many Miles Per Gallon Does Your Body Get?


Got Time? The Balancing Act

Got Time? The Balancing Act
Few of us have the luxury of training for triathlon on a full time basis. Most of us must learn to balance our training and racing with our daily responsibilities.

Gail Leveque - AZ Coaching

Got Time?

It’s a fact..........spending your hard-earned cash and hiring a qualified coach who writes you a technologically advanced, scientifically proven training program, is going to do nothing to improve your race times if you don’t have the time to do the workouts.

While a few lucky people may have the time and flexibility to train at high volume, it is much more common to find triathletes of all levels scrounging to fit the bare minimum of workouts into a crazy schedule. Life does get in the way!

Worrying about the lack of available training time does nothing about it.........finding ways to maximize the productivity of the time you do have does.

What I suggest to my athletes is that they first sit down and take a realistic look at their weekly, family obligations, sleep, and the like. From there, make decisions about how much time you have to spend training. Be sure to take into consideration travel and shower time and the like. Be creative about ways to sneak a workout in........look outside the box, so to speak. There is often much more time available than may appear at first glance. Only when you have a realistic idea of how much time you have, can you even start to think about designing an appropriate training schedule.

Once you have a weekly schedule of available training time, then it is time to build a plan that fits. If you have 8 hours a week, then write workouts that total 8 hours a week! Seems obvious, but one of the quickest ways to get discouraged about your training is to consistently fall short of your training goals. Better to plan 2 workouts a week in each discipline and actually do them, than to plan for 3 and beat yourself up because you can’t get them done..

So you have a plan now, what’s next ? Follow it! It is preferable to have a 6 workout per week plan and follow it, than the 10 or 12 workout plan that never gets done. You can make steady progress on 2 sessions a week in each sport if you are dedicated about getting those workouts in. If you are able to throw in an additional workout in your weakest much the better.

One good way to maximize limited training time is to work on a basic 2x per week schedule with a rotating extra workout every week. For example, week 1 you do 2x swim, 2x bike and 3x run, week #2 you do 2x swim, 2x run and 3x bike, and week #3 would be 2x bike, 2x run and 3x swim. I find that this is great for athletes who are fairly balanced in all disciplines..

If you are not so balanced, it is important to train your weaknesses. It is all too easy for someone with limited training time, or anyone for that matter, to get seduced into spending large chunks of time on the sport they are best at...........and generally enjoy the most. Much better to invest time, especially in the early season, in the areas that have the opportunity for the most improvement. You’re not going to improve your slug-like swim split if you don’t get yourself to the pool as often as possible!

Ok, so now you have designed a plan that fits the time you have available, does it match your goals? Nothing wrong with lofty goals, we all have them, but it’s also a good idea to have some less challenging goals that are in synch with your training level. Not saying you need to accept less than your "best", just that what constitutes your "best" needs to take into account just how much training you are able to do.

While everyone has to deal with issue of missed workouts occasionally, it is best to make an honest effort to get those workouts in. The fewer workouts on your schedule, the more critical each workout becomes. The best way to triathlon success with limited training time is to do every workout with purpose..........there are no workouts to waste. Communicate with family and friends about your training schedule in advance to lessen the chance of avoidable conflict. Every workout you complete successfully brings you one step closer to meeting your goals.

While training more may often be a good thing, training smarter is always better! Do your research........or find someone to do it for you. Finding out the methods and training principles that work best for you, your goals and your situation and then using them to make the time you spend training as focused and productive as possible will pay huge dividends come race day. Make every minute count

and you will be well on your way to a successful season!

Gail Leveque is a member of AZ Coaching out of Scottsdale, AZ Gail is a 9 year veteran of multi-sport training and racing. She is a two-time USAT All American, USAT Southwest Regional W45-49 Champion in '02 & '03 and is the current USAT Southeast Regional Masters Champion. She also placed Top Ten in her age group at the 2004 Ironman Triathlon World Championships.

How to Use a Triathlon Training Program to Lose Weight

How to Use a Triathlon Training Program to Lose Weight
By Bob Cotter

Many people who wish to lose weight don't realize that a triathlon training program is one of the best ways to help themselves with that.

If you enter a triathlon, you will need to compete in a back-to-back-to-back swim, bicycle, and run. As you might imagine, to get in shape for this amazing athletic event requires a very intense and extensive triathlon training program. It requires that you use all muscle groups, and thus train all muscle groups. The upper body, the tops of the legs, and the back of the legs all must be thoroughly worked out and made strong and efficient, and the cardiovascular system has to be made very strong.

All of these factors add up to a tremendous weight loss program. Clearly, making your muscles this strong and efficient means they are burning up more calories even at rest than the average person's muscles are. The only way to lose weight is to burn more calories than you take in--if you don't do this, you cannot lose weight no matter what you do. So a workout regimen that causes your muscles to become super efficient caloric burners and causes your metabolism to rise with your increased cardiovascular power is a workout that is ideal for losing weight.

But the weight loss advantages of a triathlon training program go beyond those basic qualities.

A triathlon training program requires that you eat foods that will give you a great deal of energy. This energy has to last a long time, too. And, you'll need to eat foods that help you rebuild your sore, taxed muscles. It so happens that all such kinds of foods are the kind that don't put on a lot of extra weight. Although you might eat a lot of carbohydrates such as pasta, you'll be burning off those calories from those carbs--that's why you're eating that kind of food in the first place. But "empty calories" like white breads will not be eaten that much; they don't provide you with enough energy. You will also end up cutting out a great deal of refined sugars as part of your triathlon training.

Refined sugars fool the body into believing that it has more energy than it actually does; so, you really won't want them. As you cut them out to further your training, you will naturally start losing your taste for sugary foods. You'll find yourself wanting more substantial sweet foods like fruits. And, you'll find yourself wanting to eat more protein. The more you fill up on protein, the less room you'll have in your appetite for things like jelly doughnuts!

Of course, all of these dietary changes are exactly the kind that so many people try to "force themselves" into and can't sustain. For those people who desire to lose weight, there need to be stronger incentives to keep the dieting and exercising going. These things need to be more fun and more interesting than they usually are for people. A triathlon training program fits the bill perfectly.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope all of the Tri Divas had a wonderful holiday. I feel a little out of the loop since I'm not training, but I suppose preparing for the birth of twins is the ultimate duathlon!

My parents are getting me a snazzy bike trailer for Christmas, so I hope to be able to log some decent miles when the Wonder Twins are ready to face the elements. I am determined to do the Danskin (or Trek) event with all of you. I won't have very much time to train, but I'm hoping having one sprint triathlon under my belt will help. I am also familiar with the swim/bike course in Austin.

Preggo details - I'll be 28 weeks on Sunday and things continue to go well. I get tired very easily these days, but no major complaints. My doctor would like to get me to 37 weeks and I think the time will continue to fly. Then the real fun begins. LOL

Sunday, November 23, 2008

1000 Challenge

Yes, I'm on a roll today...LOL

A fellow blogger suggested doing a "1000 day plan" in the hopes of shaking things up a bit. I basically need to determine where I'd like to be in 1000 days with my journey. I can also pick check points along the way for progress reports and divide the time frame into smaller chunks, if necessary. I love the idea! I'm going to apply it to a few other aspects in my life (financial, education, family elements) that will remain private. However, you'll be privy to the fitness focus...lucky, lucky folks.

100 Day Goal (end date: March 9, 2009)
-Lose 25 lbs
-Help my BFF create her "Baby Weight Blaster" program and follow it like I have my own baby weight to lose. I technically baby just wasn't of the human persuasion. LOL

250 Day Goal (end date: July 31, 2009)
-Lose 50 lbs
-Complete 101 running class and 2 sprint triathlons

1000 Days Goal (end date: August 20, 2011)

-I'd like to be maintaining at goal weight
-Complete a Half Ironman event (I originally wanted to accomplish this goal by my 35th birthday, so this challenge will hopefully make that happen a year early).

I'll be updating with progress and additional goals. If anyone is interested in doing something similar, please let me know. FYI, I used this handy calculator to determine my dates.


I occasionally give shout-outs to various folks that inspire me, but I think official recognition is in order. There are several people who have helped me tremendously...whether it be encouraging words, leading by example, amazing feats of fitness prowess or just a wicked sense of humor. I'm going to share the wealth and hope you'll do the same.

Better Day

I'm feeling like my usual positive self again, so that means another plan of attack. I've lost 200 lbs over the years and I've allowed myself to get too comfortable because of it. I can't continue to tell myself that I'm fine with the place I am now simply because I eliminated the possibility of death by obesity. There are other tasks that I'd like to complete and reaching the finish line with my weight loss is a major requirement.

I'll celebrate my 8th year of this journey in March. That's a long time to be focused on the scale, measuring food and counting points. I know I need more structure, but I'm not willing to be a Weight Watchers Points Nazi again. That mindset helped me remove a great deal of weight from my frame without drastic measures, but it also ended up taking over my life. I can't allow that again. I simply want to lead a healthy life and reach my goals in a reasonable amount of time. Sounds easy, eh?

I've also decided to reach out to my fellow weight loss veterans for motivation. There are a few people that have been in this journey as long as I have (and longer) and I'm hoping to improve my accountability by interacting with them. We're an exclusive club...why not help each other get to the final destination after all this time?

And because one bad ride doesn't make or break me, I reviewed my 2009 schedule and made some changes:

Butterfly Boogie 5K - March 28, 2009
The Space Race (Houston) - April 5, 2009
Rotary Sprint Triathlon - May 17, 2009
Danskin Women's Triathlon (Austin) - June 7, 2009
Benbrook Women's Triathlon - October 4, 2009
Komen Dallas Race for the Cure - October 17, 2009
LiveStrong Challenge (Austin) - October 23-25, 2009

2008 Turkey Roll - Flash Forzen for Freshness

I left Houston on Friday afternoon for a leisurely drive to Dallas. It's about 4 hours from city-to-city and then another hour or so to Denton, TX where the Turkey Roll was to be held

I stopped by my old office and shared coffee with a couple of long-time friends who are former co-workers at the compay that laid me off a few years ago. Our meeting must have been destined though, as minutes before we met one of them he found out that the board had just voted out the CIO who was responsible for orchestrating projects, which led to significant losses, which led to layoffs for IT.

Anyway... moving on...

Feeling how cold it was I knew I needed some gloves for the ride on Saturday. I had forgotten how cold my ears got too, so I made 2 trips to Richardson Bike Mart. Met up with the Cycling Chick Extraordinaire, Coco and WonderTwin Mama Alana and had some dinner and headed to the hotel Got my gear... I was good to go

I knew there was a possibility it would be cold... but I had no idea it would be as cold as it was. I rode in the Frost 50 last year, and I don't think it was this cold. Let's just say that by noon it was a balmy 44 degrees, according to my car -- it was easily 30-something (I heard 34) at 9am, the ride start

Let me be clear. There is nothing fun about riding in cold weather. NOTHING

It could have been a nice ride, but it went sh*tty only because of the weather. We cut our distance short to 23 miles; a lot of folks were too. No sense it turning something you enjoy doing into something you hate -- there's nothing to prove. It's all in fun.

On the upside, I got to see Courtney, see Corinna do her first ride and met Larry, the grumpy the Kiwanas information man. LOL

Here are some pics... and yes, it was as cold as it looked! My face is wind-burned today:
Me & Courtney

Courtney and Corinna

Friday, November 21, 2008

You Never Lose the Cheapos! Right?

I keep buying $10 cheapos when it comes to sunglasses for bicycling, because in my haste I always misplace them. The problem is they're not the best for your eyes. There are usually "waves" in the plastic that your eyes (and mind) have to adjust to, in order to see properly out of them.

I refuse to spend $200 on a pair of Oakley's, just so I can either lose them or have my pre-schooler take them, thinking they are a dress-up accessory.

Last weekend I stopped at Sun and Ski to get tubes for my bike. I also took a look at the sunglasses. I got to talking to one of the salespeople about this Serfas brand I found. I was surprised because they were jut $50, and came with 4 sets of lenses! That's a pretty good value.

Of course the skeptic in me had to ask questions about the quality. The salesperson said she'll never spend a ton for glasses again. She uses the Serfas brand herself and found them to be the most comfortable, helmet friendly brand yet.

They're a smaller company in California... you know how passionate those tree-huggin' hippies get when they really like something. LOL In short, they make a ton of bike stuff and claim their "passion" through all of it.

Check them out at or for just to see their sunglasses checkout

I got the KForce frames in I guess what they're calling pink, but they're no where near as pink as the picture they have on their site. Mine are more of a pearly-whiteish-pink... barely pink. I really wanted a regular color, but they were out and I needed some for the ride this weekend.

So they were $50 -- not cheap but not overboard... maybe I have a shot at keeping them! LOL

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The end of the Tri as we know it...

Ok girls, so I found out something very interesting this week at the HeartZones conference...

The Danskin as we know it is over. Maggie and Sally have jumped ship over to Trek. Apparently, Danskin is still going to attempt to have a triathlon series of their own, but it won't be the same. I'm sure Danskin will still have a following because of name recognition, but the Trek will be the "Sally Edwards" experience.

Very weird, but very interesting. It'll be cool to see what happens.

More later.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Looking Ahead...

Well, well...a new month has arrived! Fresh start, anyone?

I've decided to take a page out of Sarah's book and start planning out my '09 race schedule. Everything is tentative at this point (except Danskin, of course), but I'm almost certain this is how things will play out:

Butterfly Boogie 5K - March 28, 2009
Tour Dallas - April 4, 2009
Rotary Sprint Triathlon - May 17, 2009
Danskin Women's Triathlon (Austin) - June 7, 2009
Benbrook Women's Triathlon - October 4, 2009
LiveStrong Challenge (Austin) - October 23-25, 2009
Denton Turkey Roll - November 21, 2009

Noticeably missing from the lineup is the MS150. I've decided to put it off for another year. With the chaos that will enter my life in the 1Q 2009, I can't commit to the training schedule required for such a major event. Also, this was an event that I planned to do with Alana and since she's birthin' twin boys sometime in February, I'm almost certain that will knock her out of the April ride. It wouldn't be the same without her. *sniff*

I've decided to go kicking and screaming embrace my inner runner (I know the chick is in there somewhere) and start a running class. I'm going to do the spring session 4/13 - 5/21.

So, that's my plan for the new year. I'm feeling positive right now (with the exception of the damn tooth issue...but the dentist is going to bring the pain on Tuesday and I'm hoping for relief shortly after). I am going to ride this little wave and do some damage in November. I will return to the gym 5X week, I will give my liver a bit of a break, I will log some outdoor miles (Denton Turkey Ride is 3 weeks away) and I'll stop indulging in those blasted Fiber One Poptarts...freaking candy with fiber!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Official Ride Results!

You can click on the results to see it larger.

So remember how I was beating myself up? After receiving the ride results today, it is clear I definitely was not the only one having a hard time! There is no way that out of nearly 500 riders, that I finshed as well as I did.

Just some confirmation that this course was challenging for everyone. :)

All in all a great experience (except for the road conditions of the course -- still hated that). Should have the official race pictures next week!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Flipping Out!

HAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I learned how to do flip turns today!

Yes... probably something I should have learned a long time ago... but today was actually the first time it really came up in the training session with Olga. She said, "Can you do flip turns?" I said, "No." She said, "I'll teach you today!" I said, "Ok."

It started with jumping with my knees coming up to my chest. Next was a somersault in the water. Next was somersault with a twist. Next was take a few strokes, somersault, twist and kick out and try to touch the wall. Next was get closer, try again until you make contact with your feet on the wall to push off. Next was contact and going sideways instead of forward. HAHA. Next was my first successful flip turn. And now, after just the one lesson it feels so natural. I LOVE FLIP TURNS!

I am cold though. They had the pool at like 87° but it still felt relatively chilly. And now that I'm sitting at home happily pinching myself because I can't believe I learned flip turns so fast, I'm realizing I'm quite cold.

FLIP TURNS! *doing a little flip turn jig* I feel like I'm really getting somewhere with this!

Go in peace and love... I LOVE FLIPS TURNS! I honestly feel like this might be one of the biggest boosts to my training ever. There is so much more power in flip turn. Now if I could get my breathing worked out.

Monday, October 27, 2008

LiveSTRONG Ride Race Report

Last night I sat down to the computer and started writing a blog entry that pretty much found more failure on my behalf than success this weekend. The things I said about myself I would never have said to a friend. On the ride home, after talking about the weekend, several things occurred to me.

This weekend is not about me and my accomplishments. I mean, it is to some degree, but that's the least of it in the big picture. The weekend was about everyone challenging themselves by doing what others cannot, while raising money and awareness for Cancer... all kinds of Cancer.

Darren reminded me of what one of the announcers said, "This weekend is about giving YOUR 100%" And that 1 person's 100% might not be the same as someone else, so there is no reason to feel badly about what I did or did not accomplish.

I did the 5K at a 12.2 pace -- that's phenominal for me. The ride, well, that was a different story. I registered for the 65 miles and decided to do the 45 mile ride and it turned into 30 miles.

I started the ride and was quickly separated from my friends once we hit the hills. 2 of them were new to biking and through no fault of their own, they were going to be slower just because they were on mountain bikes. I felt badly, but there was little I could do except sit on the roadside and wait. I took liberty meeting some of the folks who were on the roadside cheering everyone on to show appreciation (and to give my friends a chance to catch-up). The cheerleaders along the course are so inspiring... just when you think you have nothing left, they just talk you through it. We had cattle ranchers, cowbells, marching bands and just good ol' fashion lawnchair observers watching us do our thing.

The ride started out fun, but I knew immediately the 5K took a ton out of my legs. I didn't want to admit it. I thought that if I just kept spinning I would get my legs back.

The course was immediately challenging. Keep in mind (I didn't know this before I started) these are the same roads Lance rides on routinely. The climbs were steep and the downhills were freakin' scary -- even with a head-wind, imagine 30+ mph, downhill, on a bike! I passed up the first rest-stop at just 4 miles in (it was BUSY!) and went on to the 2nd.

Things quickly went downhill (no pun intended). I got 2 flat tires before the 10 mile mark. Ugh! I changed one, then a mile up the road got another (the tube was bad). Had 1 tube left... if it went I would get a DNF, as the SAG wagon didn't stock tubes with the extra-long valve.

I got back on the bike and my legs and hips were just tired. No burning no anything, just tired... like I had no juice. I had to get off my bike several times to make it to the top of a couple climbs. I even called my friend Courtney for some inspirational speech on my cell phone -- or to at least let someone know that if I didn't return to send out the search parties. Seriously, at one point we were joking as the raven's were circling over our heads. LOL I was feeling pretty badly physically and was beating myself up pretty good mentally. I just couldn't understand why I didn't have it in me... I mean, I did the MS150... never had to dismount my bike once! I thought about all the things I had managed to do, but couldn't see why this was such a problem -- I thought, "It's just another challenge."

I got to the second rest stop and I took a long break, ate and hydrated. Went potty and checked out the map. At just 15 miles in, the thought of SAGging back crossed my mind briefly as my hips and legs were killing me. I realized that people were cutting their distance down by re-entering the ride at a different spot.

So after much argument with myself, I decided I would do the same -- at least I wouldn't be SAGging, and 30 miles in these hills was still a huge challenge. By the time I allowed myself to take the shortcut they were packing up the rest-stop -- that's how far behind I was. As I headed up the road I came across my friends. They were plodding along trying to make it to the stop to get some food and hydration. I stopped them and told them they were packing up, but a SAG wagon came by and gave them some food and drink. I told them my plan, and they were for it too. They were giving it their 100% -- we all were. It was just hard!

We re-entered the ride, and thankfully had tail-winds. I needed every bit of help. The chip-gravel, bumpy roads were causing my elbows to ache. Everytime I rode over a set of cattle grates I prayed I wouldn't wipe out. Cattle grates are almost like shallow ditches with pipes spaced out across them to keep the cattle from going up the road. They're hard on the bike. In fact, I think that's how I got my first pinch flat.

I can say this though... I was ahead of Lance on the course! That is until he passed me! LOL He was doing the 90 mile route. I had hit about 23 miles and a cop car came up behind me. The SWOOOOSH, like a swarm of bees, Lance and his guys zipped past me. Then, a couple minutes later, the group of guys that he dropped s. It was kind of wild to know that I just rode next to Lance, even if it was for a nano second. LOL

Word on the course was that some woman beat Lance's time by 5 minutes... evidently she hangs out at Mellow Johnny's, Lance's bike shop in Austin. Don't know if it's true, but that was the word.

The last coule miles were a welcomed change from the chip-gravel country roads. We were on the regular pavement and with no hills and a tailwind I was actually going 23 mph!

I crossed the Finish and felt a little defeated. But I'm not going to focus on that. Because having done the 5K the day before and riding the following day is something new for me and my body. Just because I can ride 2 days back-to-back, doesn't mean I can just waltz in and over-achieve.

I have every reason to feel good. I did give this MY 100%, and I do.


Saturday, October 25, 2008


Forgot my jacket...

Forgot my water bottles...

Probably would have forgotten my head if it weren't attached to my shoulders!

It was beautiful weather here in Austin. I really like this city. I don't know what it is, but there is such a laid-back feeling about it. Even the downtown hustle and bustle is low-key. This morning it looked like cyclists and runners run everything in this town. LOL

It was nice and cool, not too cold. By the time we made it to the Start area Starbucks had opened just in time (pure joy!) for both potty and coffee! I had a part of a banana muffin, part of a banana and about a 1/2 cup of yogurt fruit and granola, compliments of the Texas Culinary Institute.

Lance was not present at the festivities, but Evan Handler, from Sex and the City, was there in his place. I didn't know he was a Leukemia survivor.

It started and I heard my Daughter, "Go Mommy, go! go Mommy, go!" I makes me smile that she loves to cheer me on! She said it's Okay if I don't win, because I'll have more fun than all the other Mommies. :)

Anyway, I worked most of the run in 5 minute intervals, running 3 to 4 minutes of each interval (where I could). Although I think San Francisco lost a couple hills to Austin's downtown area, but I trekked up those hills like I meant it. On my "rests" I couldn't get my heart rate lower than 154 (that I saw anyway) after the first mile. Most of the time my heart rate was around 165 to 170!

I started my heart rate monitor as I crossed the start, and in the end I finished in an unofficial 38 minutes - that's a 12.2 minute pace. That was waaaaay better than I ever would have expected. I did have a timing chip, so I'll get the official results soon.

I grabbed a LiveStrong Pompom from a volunteer for my biggest cheerleaders who greeted me at the Finish.

We headed to iHop and talked about how Cassie and Daddy would start practicing with Mommy and we can all run a 5K together! Incidentally, there were a bunch of little ones there... not much older than Cass!

We stopped at the LiveSTRONG Village where Mommy scored another free water bottle (water bottle problem solved), Cassie scored a free tot-sized LiveSTRONG tee (probably because she's too cute! I can say that, I'm here Mom). We had silly magazine cover pictures taken in an effort to win a Nissan Maxima or a Trek bike or some other prizes. Last, I bought an awesome LiveSTRONG jacket .

More later, including pictures -- can't upload this super-duper memory card to the laptop. We're headed out to the Austin State Fair.

Tomorrow, the LiveStrong Ride. :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

2009 MS150

I can't believe it. I did it. I signed up for the MS150 Houston to Austin again.

Registration for the event opened at 10:15 yesterday and by 1:52 pm it was over 80% full. 13,000 slots goes pretty fast!

It's also the 25th anniversary for the event, so hopefully it will be one to remember. I'll be riding with Team Mission Control. :)

Training for the MS150 will be good for me, partnered with the training for the 2009 Danskin. I have to figure out a new workout schedule, but I definitely need to dedicate at least 1 day to the swimming pool.

The Cadence function on my bike computer is already proving to make a difference in my riding. It kind of opens my eyes to how I utilize my energy. Hopefully this will make me more efficient and make my training more productive.

Just a couple weeks until the LiveSTRONG 5K and ride. I'm looking forward to the event. I'm sure Lance will remember me from the raffle drawing in 2003. LOL

Happy training girls!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Tri Mama?!?

I guess I'm officially in the off-season. :) I am 21 weeks pregnant with twin boys! I'm so excited about this new chapter in my life. While I'm obviously going to be taking a baby time-out, I am still 100% committed to the Danskin Austin in June. My due date is 2/22 and I look forward to returning to my training in a reasonable amount of time.

Looks like we'll have two more fans in the Tri Divas entourage next year!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Danskin Dreams

Danskin Austin is 8 months away, but the event is already taking up a nice chunk of real estate in my head. I plan to do at least one other sprint triathlon before Danskin in June, but I can't help but focus on the Austin event. I feel the purpose of this year's tri was simply to prove to myself that I could do it. I wasn't focused on individual discipline/transition times. I just wanted to cross the finish line without having my gimpy foot in a ziplock freezer bag. Mission accomplished.

For Danskin '09, I have a few elements I'd like to improve before Sally does her warm-up cheer...

Put in serious pool time: I made no secret of my aversion to swim training and while it didn't take me 2 days to finish the 1/2 mile swim, 29 minutes is nothing to truly celebrate. Austin *must* be different. I may always view the swim as the necessary evil in triathlon, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't improve on my weakest event. The Austin course has a turn and depending on who you talk to, this may/may not add a degree of difficulty. I actually appreciated the Chicagoland swim because it was straight across the lake. It was nice to be able to look up and see the finish (an integral part of the swim mind games I was playing LOL).

Transitions: Ok, I know this year's Danskin wasn't a time issue for us, but we spent a HUGE amount of time in the transition areas. Seriously, we did everything but pull out a grill and make paninis. My goal for Austin is to keep it short and sweet. The "team togetherness" element will be removed (we've all pretty much agreed that we'll be sappy before and after the race...the middle part? every woman for herself), so I'm going to treat T1/T2 like my tri idols do.

Bike: My best event and the chance to make up the most time. The Austin course is hilly and I plan to train accordingly. I did part of the Danskin route during Ride for the Roses and I remember a few crazy hills and one ridiculous downhill that has a sharp turn at the end. Umm...why?

Run: I *have* to change my mindset about running. It's no secret that I despise it. People tell me I'll love it once I really get into it. Doubtful. If I do end up becoming a runner by the time this is all over, I'll eat a running shoe. Seriously. It will be a hit on youtube. Anyway, it is pointless for me to work so hard improving my other times, only to finish by walking the 5K portion. Even a steady jog would be better than walking, eh?

Losing Poundage: The more I lose, the less I have to haul on the course. I'd also like to look better overall. Tri suits are unforgiving and I want less rolls in the bakery for '09. I'll even do a side-by-side comparison. If y'all don't see a major improvement between 2008/2009, you can let me have it, mmmkay? If I don't get serious about getting the rest of this weight off, it will be here forever. I'd also like to get my beloved D&B bag before it's officially out of style.

So, that's my focus right now. Boring entry for those not interested in training, but after the shock/excitement/chaos that's entered my life lately, I need something to encourage discipline/structure/sanity.

Have a great week!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

What's the Plan Stan?

Okay, 21 days until the LiveSTRONG. That's a 5K on Saturday and *cough* 62 miles on the bike Sunday. Yeah, I wussed. I changed from the 90+ to the 62. I just haven't been on the bike enough and that's just the flat-out truth.

The Bike Around the Bay was cancelled due to Ike. :( Kinda bummed about that, but there are other rides.

November 2nd is the Tour de Donut. Donuts at every rest-stop; as many as you can eat. For every one you consume, you get a 5 second finish credit. LOL You can finish before you even start if you eat enough!

November 19th is a new ride in Wallis, TX. The Independence Ride. Benefits civil servants who fight the "global war on terror". I think I'm going to do this one. :)

I would love to get to Dallas to roll with y'all for the Turkey ride, whateve that was. I'm thinking about how that could work out. Just don't know if my family will be here yet.

MS150 registration is open on October 15th. I believe I am going to move forward with it. This will be a challenge for me, doing it on my own. My secondary goal is to be more *social* and make friends... I just don't do that well in real life *sigh*

Already know the first ride in 2009 will be the Frost 50. April will be right around the corner and that's the MS150. I'll need every ride I can get.

Oh... and don't think I'm not thinking about the Danskin Austin. I'm there... like white on rice. :)

A Finisher's Towel?

I finished! I finished! I finished! I finished! I finished! I finished!

2 Hours, 27 minutes, 23 seconds.

I beat my goal! I beat my goal! I beat my goal! I beat my goal!

I was going in with a plan of 2 and a half hours and I beat it!

Play by play!

5:00 am Up to eat a peanut butter, banana and honey toasted sandwich. Wanted to make sure everything would digest before I got caught out in the middle of nowhere without a bathroom.

5:30 am Dressed, writing down directions to Claremore Rec Center. Loading my bike. Double checking my sock sitaution.

5:40 am. Leaving the house. STOP! Don't have my sunglasses. They're kind of hard to remember when it's pitch black outside.

5:42 am On the road again.

6:20-ish Arrive at Claremore Rec Center... put bike together, gather belongings, whimper in fear, head to check in and transition area setup.

Then I stood around for a long time. Had to pee... a lot. Fear pee. You know. Adreneline pee. A little chit chat, I recognized a few people I've done Running 101 with... mostly just pacing back and forth to keep from unracking my bike, taking my toys and going home.

7:30 am Time to line up numerically to get in the pool. It was a time trial, a person going in the pool every ten seconds. I was 112... and there were maybe 15 people set to jump in after me... they weren't slower, they just signed up later than I did.

I have no idea what time I went in the pool... I didn't have a watch... I didn't have my Garmin (not waterproof)... and I really missed it... but I think it would have messed with my head, honestly.

The swim was ... scary. I started out too fast and I could immediately feel it. It's so hard to slow yourself down when you've got people swimming on top of you though. People could pass but it was nerve jangling to say the least. The first lane was one way only, then all the middle lanes were up and back, the last lane was one way only and make your way around a corner to the walk out. I had a few people pass me and almost kick me in the face and I passed one person. I made it out of the pool.

Then it was about 100 yards to the transition area. I was a little fearful of this part... it was barefoot transition and I was terrified I would step on something. Before everything started, it hadn't been swept up all that great... but I didn't notice walking over anything on the way out... so either everyone else had stepped on it first, or it had been cleared.

Swim cap off, goggles off, dry feet off very quickly, sit down, socks on, shoes on, stand up, sunglasses on, helmet on, gloves on, walk the bike to the mounting area... and we're off on the bike.

I was led to believe (meaning I will be doing my own research from here on out thank you very much) that the bike portion was a big hill at the beginning, then flat out and back and a downhill finish. It was not that. And at this point... I was sucking air pretty bad... I didn't slow down enough in the swim to really catch a breath break (best swim time yet though!) and so I hit the first hill and started wanting to vomit. I hit the second hill... and horror of horrors, I was about to start going backwards. I stumbled off my bike and walked up the hill. I am not ashamed of it (or at least now I'm not)... I was freaking out... walking up a hill! Like not even a mile out of the bike gate! But I think walking that hill gave me a chance to get my breath back, calm down a little, take stock of how I was doing and just get on with it.

Then I hit the rolling hills on what was supposed to be (because someone told me and I didn't do my own research) a flat course. I can tell you now that the curses were flying out of my mouth. It was NOT ladylike. But I wonder sometimes if I am even ladylike... so who cares, the f-bombs were flying.

As I mentioned, I didn't have my Garmin (for one, I had semi-decided that it would take too much time to get it started in the transition area since I couldn't wear it in the pool... I hadn't thought about just turning it on and leaving it there ready to go, but all I was thinking about was that sometimes it takes some time to "locate the satellite"... I didn't want to wait. Oh and yeah, I forgot to even bring it with me)... so not knowing what the mileage was was kind of driving me crazy... but in another sense, not know how much further I had to go was ok too... I was terrified of more rolling hills... it did flatten out about mile 5 if my mental calculations are right... but coming back from the turnaround, I'd lost momentum... which made the flats coming back really hard too... and then I knew what I would be facing with the rolling hills too. Coming back... I almost called it quits. I'm serious. I almost just threw in the towel, said this is a crazy thing to do, I quit.

Then my chain slipped. And I really thought I was having a serious enough equipment malfunction to validate my thoughts about quitting. I once again stumbled off my bike (with a big hill right in front of me, GOD!), got down on my hands and knees to look at the chain, fumbled with it for what felt like an eternity, pulled this, pushed that, finally figured out how to get it slipped back into place (not broken, luckily!) ... stood there for a second contemplating waiting for the race official to call me in as a DNF... got on my bike, rode up the damn hill... and kept going. Over what felt like hill after hill after hill.

At one point, the race official (on a motorcylce) was riding right behind me (there was only one other biker behind me at this point, and I honestly thought she took herself out at the turnaround and that he was right behind me because I was very, dead, last.)... but he was the nicest guy... he kept saying you only have one more hill to make it up... I'm going to ride ahead and tell them you are on your way, speed it up on this downhill so you can make it up that last hill. You can do it!

And I did. I stumbled into the transition area again. Changed into my running shoes. Had to retie one of the shoes because it was falling off ... my hands were shaking at this point and I wasn't breathing very well again... and then I realized that my ass was broken. My right ass to be specific. It still hurts and I suspect tomorrow will be worse. So I kind of lumbered across the run start line.

Let me stop here and say something... those other people, other competitors, and all the event volunteers were just AWESOME! On the bike when I passed someone who had already turned... they were so nice! DOING GREAT! JUST UP AHEAD! AWESOME JOB! They were so supportive, I almost started bawling my fool head off. And the run was the same way. Everyone I passed was just so kind! You're doing great! Keep it up! It gets easier once you're up the hill!

Now onto the run. I had nothing left. I tried. I really, really tried. But I came to the physical point where all I could do was put one foot in front of the other walking. So I walked it. And there was a BIG hill to climb. And once again, I really wished I'd had my Garmin with me... because I just kept walking, and walking and walking... I really thought I'd missed the turnaround... I was this close to turning back around to see if I'd missed it somewhere, when I sighted the cone. I'm really glad I didn't turn around... I would have hated to get all the way through to the halfway point of the run and get disqualified because I got off the route.

The guy at the turnaround was also awesome. I still can't tell you how nice these people were and how encouraging and how wonderful they were. At this point I really thought I was the very last one and I was touched at how much encouraging energy they had left for the last participant. But they were awesome.

I turned around... and headed back. I tried to run a little, but I still just didn't have it. My legs were just too heavy. And strangely, I had NO cramps in my legs, but my ARMS (forearms) were starting to draw up. It was the weirdest sensation. That's when I passed the last girl who I thought had DNF'ed at the bike turnaround. I was so happy to see her! She was just as determined as me to finish! I whooped at her and she yelled for me. It was so awesome to see such determination on her face. I can only wish that other people were as proud of me as I was of her.

I rounded the next few corners... finish line in sight... still didn't run until I got to a place I knew I could sustain a run over the finish line... one of the volunteers came out to meet me, she said, RUN NOW! I'll pace you in! So I ran into the chute... Smiling the goofiest smile I've ever smiled as they took my picture coming over the finish line.... and then they gave me a finishers towel.

I'll admit, I was sad it wasn't a medal... but I got a towel... And I'm going to sleep with that towel tonight and don't think I'm in any way kind of kidding.

Go in peace and love... But for now, I'm going to lay down, take a nap and relish in the sense of accomplishment I had. I could have quit. I wanted to quit. But I didn't. I finished my first triathlon today. And I even beat my own goal in the process.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I just looked at the race map for Sunday.

Hill. BIG hill. During the run. A hill that runs up and around a circular drive for one of the local universities... AND! It's out and back... meaning hill. BIG hill. Twice.

Oh well, ya know? I'm in it hill or no.

I finally did manage to make to make it back to the gym and do a mini tri with my trainer last night... full swim, transition to spin bike, transition to indoor track. I only biked about 20 minutes and ran about a mile... but the transitions are strange. Especially that one from biking to running. Oh well, it's all strange actually.

I had my shirt half on, half off, running through the gym in my socks, trying to pull my tech shirt over my wet bathing suit, dripping puddles of water as I went. Let me tell you, the looks you get... people think I'm being tortured to death.

A little old lady stopped me last week after watching me in the pool area... and she said "What on earth are you doing, darlin'? You're too old for the Olympics!"

I just laughed and said "I'm training for a triathlon."

"Oh, well, good luck with that!"

It was just funny... too old for the Olympics... I guess she didn't watch Dana Torres kicking butt and taking names... or any other of the countless athletes in their 30's also kicking butt and taking names.

I'm getting so excited. I'm pumped up. I can't wait to cross my first finish line.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

One Week

My first event is one week from today. It's been one of those weekends too that I haven't done anything that I should be doing.
  • I haven't been on my bike in a week
  • I haven't been in the pool since Wednesday
  • I haven't run since Wednesday
  • I haven't done anything since Wednesday

Life kind of took a higher priority this week and I let training move to the backseat.

I don't regret my decision to spend time with family and put triathlons and athleticism on the backburner... and I can't say that the thought of not even competing in this event hasn't crossed my mind... and honestly, I can still back out, probably with no refund, but whatever.

But somewhere deep inside, I know I can do this. I can finish this. I can do this event, even if I haven't been as dedicated in the last week as I needed to be. Because I have been dedicated up until this point...

And the good thing about the whole deal is since it's my first event, I won't have any idea if my time is way off... because it will be my first time. My first finish.

Please, please, please don't let me DNF.

Motivation from an unlikely source...

Alana and I went to the Kids Playtri Triathlon to cheer on Corina's ironkids yesterday. It was a GREAT event (and her kids did a fabulous job). I'd never been to a kiddie triathlon and it was a sight to behold. All of the children (age 7-14) seemed so focused on their disciplines, you couldn't help but take a little motivation home. I didn't have my own athlete competing (although C's kids have adopted us as their new Aunts), but I was truly proud of the little triathletes. In a world that seems to think children are doomed because of inactivity and rising obesity rates, it was nice to see a group that had taken school's general physical fitness message and applied it to the sport of triathlon. These kids have found something beyond the video games and junk food...and they actually enjoy it. What a concept. As an adult (and budding triathlete), I must say it was a strong dose of reality to see a 7-year old on a fancy road bike with aero bars. Good grief. Yes, it's time for Coco to get her azz in gear. Again.

As I've mentioned, I knew some of my intensity would disappear once Danskin was over. I focused on the event for so long, I was a bit deflated and unmotivated once it was in the rearview mirror. I was so happy (fractured foot issues aside) when I was in training. I need to feel that again. It's time to focus on my diet, get back to the gym 5x week and curb the social libations. While I didn't go completely cold turkey, I ate 95% clean while training, kicked my own azz in the gym and reduced the cocktails to bi-weekly. Guess what happened? I felt great, lost some poundage and didn't feel deprived! Yeah...please give that back to me now.

Today was my first day of diet cleanup (eating has been a little atrocious since my birthday) and I did a short bike ride with some of the Tri-Divas. Tomorrow, I will eat clean and take spin class. One day at a time, eh? Once the stupid carb cravings disappear and the workouts increase, all will be right in my world again. I have some serious work to do. As you know, I was already in the process of losing my little rebound gain. Well, I'm 10 lbs heavier than I was at Danskin (I got on the evil box because I needed a starting point) and that's just unacceptable. I want to truly change my body before Danskin 2009 and that means the work starts now. There's also a chance that I'll attend Phat Camp with Lynn and Alana in Hawaii next year. Hello, motivation.

And for good measure, next month I'll be registering for the MS150 Houston to Austin ride. The event fills up fast, so I'll jump on it once registration opens and be fully committed after paying money. Y'all know how I am with ca$h. :) I'm doing this crazy ass inspiring challenge with Donna and Alana and they make me feel confident and relaxed. In return, I will provide comic relief with inappropriate commentary and bizarre road observations. Sounds like a win/win, eh?

Hope you all have a great week...

Monday, September 22, 2008

And I ran... I ran so far away...

Ok, so I wogged. And I didn't really go anywhere cuz I was on the treadmill. BUT -- I did a 5 min walk warm up, then a 20 minute wog without stopping or resorting to a walk, and then a slow cooldown on the highest possible incline to give my shins a good stretch.


Seriously though, it felt good to check off the first box on my training schedule. As much as I'm freaking out about it being a 10k, I'm glad I did it because it will give me more motivation for the training :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

New Stupidity

So, my TDWT group coach Susan sends out this email about the Frank Lloyd Wright races on October 26th, hoping as many of the girls from the group could go as possible to do either the 5k or 10k.

So I signed up. For the 10K. ACK!!!!!! So now, I have 5 weeks to train for a freaking 10k. I'm really hating myself right now, but I'm too stubborn to ask them to change it. Luckily, at the end of October in Chicago, it should be relatively cooler than it is now. I freaking hope so.


Sunday, September 14, 2008

Jennifer Lopez Completes Malibu Triathlon

Jennifer Lopez participated in the Nautica Malibu Triathlon at Zuma Beach in Malibu, Calif., early Sunday morning. She completed the half-mile ocean swim, 18 mile out-and-back bike course, and 4-mile out-and-back run course in successfully competed in 2:23:28 minutes. Matthew McConaughey also completed the course with a finishing time of 1:30:44.

The competition, which was presented by Toyota, helped raise money for their charity partner, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. For more information on the triathlon, visit


I forget where along the gulf is is that Donna lives... Is she ok? I'm worried about her being in Ike's path. I know that CoCo and Alana are further inland, but if I remember correctly, Donna is right along the coast somewhere.

Let me know!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

A Good Day to Wipe Out!

I have been training hard on my new road bike. It's nothing fancy by any means, but it's my first brand new bike since I was a wee one. I have now built up to an average of 14 miles a day. At first, I dreaded the biking segment of the triathlon. Swimming is not a problem for me...and the run, well I figure I can always put one foot in front of the other and make that to the finish line. But in the beginning, when I first agreed to complete my first tri, it was the cycling that frightened me.

Being me...I dove in head first and made very fast progress in just three months. Now, the bike is what I look forward to everyday. I hate even taking a day off...feeling that I may miss something. Miss that ME time that the bike fulfills and helps work out all daily problems in my head.

I was told...if you haven't wiped out will eventually. Well, yesterday was destined to be my first, and with my luck, I'm sure it's not my last.
Right away...I felt something about the day was off. Like a Friday the 13th for some...Hump day was not kind, or perhaps it was my luckiest day yet. Whichever it is....Nature tried to warn me. First off, a truck ran right out in front of me and I braked okay for that to slow myself and let him pass on by without casualty. I thought to myself...Jerk...I know you just saw me. The nerve of some people. Well, I shook it off and realized every cyclist has this happen at one time or another and that I should leave it behind me...just let it go. Can you tell I'm completely over it? :-)

Later on, I would realize this little speed bump in my workout would only be the beginning, a warm up for what was to come.

I decided to do my normal route in reverse, meaning I went the opposite way around. I'm one that gets tired of the same old thing, so I thought I'd switch it up. Maybe I disturbed the planets alinement or it could have been the whole big bang experiment they conducted yesterday. Whatever it was...mother nature did not like.

After working my way up a monster of a hill, a boxer came out of nowhere and started chasing me down. I didn't have a can of halt, but I wasn't going to let the demon know I was frightened of him. Momma don't play tag!

I reached for my water bottle and squirted him right in the face. He was so stunned...he stop chasing and just gazed in disbelief as I peddled safely away. I giggled to myself...and rejoiced in my cleverness.

Before long...two little possessed, heal bitters came out of nowhere....nipping at my feet. I reached for the water bottle a second time. What worked once was sure to work again.

However, these mutts had a one tracked mind. The water did not distract them in the least. All that I could do was pick up speed and out run them....escaping yet again without harm.

I stopped to look at a house that was for lease, then called my husband and left the call back number with him. I happily rode away, talking on the phone about how nice the house was and yadda yadda. I had just told him good bye...ready to end our conversation... as I knew not to be on the phone while riding. It could be I've heard.

Before I hung up..A crazy ass dog ran OUT OF NOWHERE and stopped dead in front of my bike. I reached my free hand for the brake....but it wasn't slowing me fast enough. I put my right foot down hoping a little drag would slow me down even faster. Mind ya...this was on a down hill...

That was it, once my foot hit the ground...the bike just kept on going full speed. I flew off the bike...the dog yelped, as I slide across the asphalt off into a ditch.

The first thing I remember hearing my husband yelling from my phone, “What happened?”

I grabbed the phone and told him I had crashed my bike.

“Are you alright,” he asked?

Grumbling about not knowing until I got up off the ground....I slowly picked myself up. Once I double checked for protruding bone injuries...thank God there were none....I looked around for the dog.

He was GONE! My husband had heard the poor dog yelp over the phone during the crash and so he asked me, “Did your wheel run over him?”

I thought to myself...Damn, I forgot to look as I was flying through the air and hitting asphalt at twenty miles an hour, head first, IF I ran completely over the freaking dog.

In the end, my war wounds are not near as bad as they could have been. I feel extremely blessed that road rash on my knee and upper right arm is the most serious of all my injuries. I have bumps and bruises from my face on down, but nothing that will not heal completely up and have me back on my bike in just a few days time.

My bike also came through with just a few scrapes and a loose brake handle. My helmet wears the scrapes and gashed that could have been my head if not protected. Always wear one that is certified!!!
After a quick visit to the doctor for a tetanus shot and cleansing of my wounds...I'm safely back home recouping.

Looking back on it....It was a Good Day for a Wipe Out :-)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Knew It Wouldn't Be Long Before...

Armstrong to return, ride in '09 Tour

7-time winner to come out of retirement and race for Astana, sources say

Lance Armstrong will come out of retirement and race in the Tour de France next year, sources close to the situation have told Velo News.

Armstrong, who will turn 37 years old this month, would race with Astana, the sources said.

The seven-time Tour de France winner will race in the Amgen Tour of California, Paris-Nice, the Tour de Georgia, the Dauphine-Libere and the Tour de France — for no salary or bonuses.

Armstrong's manager, Mark Higgins, did not answer questions.

An article about Armstrong's comeback will be published in the upcoming issue of Vanity Fair, Velo News said.

Armstrong reportedly will reunite with his former team manager Johan Bruyneel, who guided Armstrong and his teams Motorola and U.S. Postal Service to seven straight Tour de France titles.

Sources also told Velo News that Armstrong will post all of his internally tested blood work online to prove that he's clean.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Hills Are Alive... Corina's neighborhood! Alana and I headed to C's house this morning for a ride. I am so jealous of all the natural riches that are practically in her backyard. Great riding roads (with limited traffic), beautiful scenery (with cornfields!) and a large lake. She could easily have a triathlon in the area. I told her to find some sponsors and make it happen. :)

We did 15 miles this morning and they flew by. We stopped near the end of the route and enjoyed the lake for a bit. I saw the biggest carp I've ever laid eyes on. I'm mad that I didn't have a camera with me. Corina laughed at my enthusiasm, but I'm a city girl...big fish are just amusing to me. LOL

About the hills, we did several rolling hills and a couple of big inclines on our ride. The famous "monster hill" that she talks about is NO joke. The incline is so steep that I'm almost positive you'd roll backwards and suffer a gnarly crash if you didn't keep pushing forward. We didn't tackle THE HILL today, but it's on my Bucket List!

Alana and I plan to ride at Corina's a few more times this fall while training for the Denton Turkey Roll Ride in November. Julie (also a fellow Tri Diva!) is coming from OK to join us for the event. We're doing the 35-mile course, so it should be a nice ride in the cool weather. Hooray!

Hope you all have a great weekend,

Friday, September 5, 2008

Road ID

A friend bought this. It's a velcro strap that goes on your wrist or ankle. On the strap are 7 lines of text that you customize. Perfect for those of us that faceplant on the Austin hills!

Road ID


My first triathlon is scheduled to be completed by me one month from today.

I feel like I have a lot to do in the next month... like learn how to do all this, ha!

The most important thing might be to learn how to relax and just enjoy it for what it is. *snort* Yeah, I'll try.

It would be safe to say that I'm am scared.


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

I'm crazy

I'm crazy to think I can be ready for Austin. I'm absolutely terrified of the hills. There aren't enough hills in Illinois to make me feel ready for Austin. What was I thinking to consider Austin??

The fun. The excitement. The adrenaline. Oh yeah. Ok, now I remember.

I'm still crazy.

p.s. I still haven't made it to my one-month-o-pool-workouts. I'm a bad triathlete.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

New Wheels!

Hey Girls-

My "window shopping" trip to Richardson Bike Mart ended up being a purchase. Isn't that how it always happens? I knew that it was time to get a new baby. I'd been having wheel problems with my current bike. The last ride that Courtney and I did ended up with me having to bail at the halfway point. Courtney did the turnaround and rode back to the car, loaded her own bike and came back to pick me up. I never mentioned it here, but FedEx Ground wasn't too kind with my bike. Peter had to true the wheel before the Danskin. It performed fine during the tri, but I had a battle with a rock (and lost) a few weeks ago and the wheel was pretty much done.

I purchased the bike used (from Donna!) a few years ago and it served me well....but it was time for something new. I ended up going with the Trek 1.2 and I'm already in love. As usual, RBM took the time to make sure everything was adjusted properly and sent me on my way. Court and I will be heading out for a long ride tomorrow morning and I'll let you know how things go.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Fatlete To Athlete

Fear makes the wolf bigger than he is."
---- German Proverb

Been thinking on some things lately... mainly my quest... my deepest desire... to be an athlete. And it scares me. There are those of you who would say but you already are an athlete... but somewhere, deep inside I think... No, I'm not, I'm a fatlete... I'm a pretender, a poser, an imposter.

The simple fact is that there is a disconnect going on here in my brain. I can't quite put my finger on it, but because I can't run a whole 5k, that somehow diminishes the fact that I finished a 5k. I keep trying to tell myself a finish is a win! And I'm starting to believe it, but damn is it hard to break bad habits. The bad habits be self doubt and negative talk.

I'm also scared that I've backed myself into a triangle shaped corner... swimming, biking, running heading up each sharp point and each sharp point poised to poke me someplace tender... a stitch in the side, a twinge in the knee, burning lungs, sore feet... what kind of crazy person embarks on a journey they know will more than likely cause physical pain and at the very least an extremely deep physical fatigue? Crazy people, that's the negative talk in my head. That's the fatlete talking... the girl who so desires to be strong and physical and accomplished...

The athlete inside me is no girl... she's a woman who knows her strengths, knows already that I am strong, I am physical, I am accomplished. The athlete within knows that I have pushed myself to lengths I didn't know I had inside of me in the last few years. The athlete inside of me gets up off the couch and goes for a bike ride or a run or a walk at the very least. The athlete inside of me is the clear winner when I struggle, and I mean struggle deep within my soul about making myself go to the gym and then I actually end up in the gym.

The secret is though... that once I'm there, I'm kind of happy to be there. I feel a sense of accomplishment, I feel good, I like it... but the fatlete, that cynical bitch... seriously, I can talk myself down from a good workout high like you wouldn't believe. I walk away from the gym and I'm all happy and endorphiny and as I walk to my car, I feel the fatigue start to set in, and suddenly my shoulders are drooping, and my gym bag weighs a ton, and putting one foot in front of another seems so laborious... I just start thinking negative thoughts about why can't I just take this in stride, why does it wear me out so deeply, why do I want to give up my social life for this, why do I want a life where I go to bed at 9:00 because I'm so deeply tired.

I want the negative talk gone... it's doing me no good, it does nothing but cause me discomfort, distress, self doubt. It's so easy to get lost in that awful vortex, swimming against currents, riding uphill, running out of breath. When you talk yourself out of doing an event or even just out of going to a spin class... because you think you can't. But most times you can.

It's my inner athlete giving me this big pep talk... talking me up and making me excited about training for something... it's the fatlete that keeps telling me you're not ready, you can't do that, you'll fall on your face, you'll hurt yourself.

There is a triathlon in Claremore, Oklahoma... in October. Logically, I'm not ready. Mentally, I'm scared to death. Physically, I could keep moving, but it won't be fast. At what point do I just take the plunge... I'm never going to be 100% ready to barrell down this path... There will always be an event I'm scared of... a marathon, an Iron Man, an ultramarathon, a 100 mile ride... and yeah, maybe I'll never do those things... but I'll never know what I can do until I just get out there and try (or maybe I should say tri).

Time to banish the fatlete... no more inner athlete... just all over athlete... I believe in consistency, I believe in strength, I believe in power, I believe in me.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

More Oly Inspiration...

Hey Divas-

I ran across this story today and thought I'd share. Who doesn't love inspirational stories?!? I hope you all have a great weekend!

Natalie du Toit

Monday, August 18, 2008

Welcome New Meat!

Hey there "New Meat" --- Hope you don't mind, but I'll call you Julie. We no longer Haze our new members of team Tri Diva.

About firsts... I'll share. Oh, wait. Not those firsts! ;)

Olga is right... you're not a cyclist until your first fall! I like to think I did mine right. I fell gracefully, at a stop sign with a pickup truck of high school kids right next to me. How's that for embarrassing?

Anyway, just wanted to say "welcome" to the team!

As of everything else, I've been in Alabama at my mother-in-laws for the last 4 days, where everything is centered around food. We eat breakfast, and no sooner do we finish the last bite, she's talking about lunch. I can't really do a lot of sugar, but I've been testing the waters... I feel like I've been on a sugar high for the last 2 days. My detox will start the moment we pull out of this driveway.

I've been watching the Olympics (In fact the tri is on in the background). After interviews with Dara Torres, I swear I feel that at almost 41 myself, that anything is possible. I'm not saying I'm going to be an Olympic athlete, but it is inspiring nonetheless.

I look forward to getting home and hitting my training. Still up in the air about Benbrook. I want to do it -- I haven't given up on it totally yet. The big deal is that I have to take a day off of work since the Tri is on Sunday -- Otherwise I'll have to drive 6 hours back to Houston, just me and the Cassinator, AFTER the tri... so I'm still thinking about logistics... I know. Time is running out. *sigh*

I reached my minimum fundraising goal for the LiveSTRONG challenge and if any of Team Tri Diva is interested in Riding the end of October, I'm still up for having company. :)

Take care... I'll be back to my regularly scheduled posting by Wednesday!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

New Blood

Well... crazy as it may be... I'm really jealous I missed out on the Danskin with you ladies this year... I read about Lesli and Courtney both making their decisions to enter the event, the jitters and the questions, injuries, fear... and I thought for some reason... I really want to do that.

But I was too scared to commit so soon... so here I am... standing on the brink... and training for my very own first spring tri in April of 2009 so that I can join you all at the finish line for Danskin Austin '09... and I have to admit, while I'm so excited about that... I could throw up too.

Let me also mention... I just bought my first road bike on Thursday night... so exciting and cute bike shop boys, oh yeah!

Olga(my trainer, yes, her name is Olga)... jinxed me the other day... she said you're not a bike rider until you take your first fall... and when you fall, get up, dust yourself off, get back on your bike and go... But if I'm admitting the truth, I was kind of hoping that all those falls I took as a kid on my bike would, you know... COUNT. I was laughing with my mom the other day about how it should be the older you get the harder you fall... she just laughed and said, yeah, and I've got 20 years on you... she doesn't do stupid things like go out on bikes though. She's a little more careful with her body... I don't know if I'll ever learn that.

So you should know that on my second ride, I took the first spill in many years... which was of course witnessed by the pedestrian I was trying to avoid... and who thought I was crazy when I pumped my arms in the air (after I laid on the ground for a second and took a mental inventory to see if anything was broken...) and yelled "THAT WAS MY FIRST FALL!" I feel like I joined a club or something...

But hey! I did... tri-divas! So... from a new member... I'm excited to train along with you all, mention my silly mistakes, learn from you all (especially about transitions!) and I look so forward to meeting all of you in Austin '09. (except Lesli!, I look forward to seeing you again, if not before!)

Here's to the ladies who Tri.


Jersey Girls?

Good Morning Divas!

Donna mentioned the idea of a Team Tri Divas jersey. We could use a color scheme/font similar to the blog logo. They'll look great at Danskin Austin next year and we'll be able to rep the group in the individual events we do throughout the year. Hooray for team spirit! :) What do you think?

Hope you're all having a great weekend. To Phelpsie, go 'head with your bad self! 8 is GREAT!

Monday, August 11, 2008

I wanna be like Mike

Michael Phelps eats between 8 and 10 THOUSAND calories a day. Then again, he pretty much eats, sleeps, and swims. Still, I wanna be like Mike. *grins*

Ok, so, I probably will never be able to eat 8,000 calories a day -- can you imagine the amount of food?!?! -- I can still swim until I'm ready to eat my own arm off.

Today was my first time in the pool since my last training day before the Danskin. I can tell I've lost a little from not swimming for nearly a month. Now that I've gotten back in the pool, I've promised myself a month of daily pool workouts. I feel like I don't know how to get daily workouts back into my schedule. I did it for nearly 6 months -- why am I suddenly having problems?!?

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Melon Patch Tour

Another ride in the books. The weather was very hot and humid, so we dropped down to the 29-mile route (which was actually 30.17 miles according to the bike 'puter). Alana and I finished in 2:08...14.14 mph pace. Not speedy, but decent considering the heat. Oy, the heat. There was a nice breeze during the first 20 minutes and then the wench disappeared! We hit the first rest stop and grabbed bananas and pickles (this combination would only be acceptable in the cycling world or weird prego craving). I took 4 endurolytes during the ride and they worked like a charm! My muscle cramps in the heat are usually pretty bad and I had NO pain on the course. Hooray for Coco! I also drank H20 and Luna splash like a crazy woman.

Quote of the Day: "We must be on the verge of death...there are flies everywhere." - Alana, Melon Patch Tour 2008.

All in all, a good ride...the heat has me on the fence about doing it again next year. We did Melon Patch in 2004 and the weather was superb. High 70s/low 80s and overcast. That was 4 years ago...we've had accelerated global warming and the re-election of Bush...things were bound to change. LOL

Hope everyone is having a great weekend. Go Team USA!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Naked Ambition

These pictures are amazing! The swimmer's picture is my favorite, though I do appreciate them all.

From Mail Online
Naked ambition: Britain's Olympians strip down as they prepare to make history in Beijing
By Arthur Martin

"The images will be used as part of an advertising campaign for Powerade, the official sports drink of the Beijing Games."

"'Nadav [the photographer] made us all feel really comfortable, and we had a lot of fun. The Inner Gear for an athlete - how we train, what we eat, drink and when we sleep - is as important as what we wear, and it's great that a campaign like this brings it to life.'"

"Cathryn Sleight, marketing director for Coca-Cola Great Britain which produces Powerade, added: 'Everyone is used to seeing athletes in competition or winning, but we wanted to give people the chance to see the real make-up of an athlete and their muscle and power, celebrating the body and spirit and the hard work that goes into training for all athletes whatever your level.'"

Easy rider: Rower-turned-cyclist hRebecca Romero shows
off her enviable physique on her bike

The naked truth: Triple jumper Phillips Idowu shows off his
toned body in all its glory

Making waves: Swimmer Gregor Tait goes for a skinny dip

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Flip-flops, Altoids and Other Things That Smell: Amusements From My First Tri

This is a great read...enjoy! :)

Flip-flops, Altoids and Other Things That Smell: Amusements From My First Tri
Do you see the bladder as half-full or half-empty? In this instance, it really doesn't matter how you look at it... you'd just better go.

By: Meg Lentz

Ten years ago, I said that I wanted to do a triathlon. Ten months ago, I started training. Ten weeks ago, I thought I’d never make it across the finish line. And ten days ago, I did it!

Ten hours ago, I went for a ride. Ten minutes ago, I returned from a run. Why? Because in ten months, I’m doing another one.

Until then, here’s a list of things to remember for next time:

1. Don’t try to hold it. Do you see the bladder as half-full or half-empty? In this instance, it really doesn’t matter how you look at it… you’d just better go.

Prior to the race, I was in the transition area thinking:

  • Should I wear flip-flops over to the start area? I kind-of have to go to the bathroom.

  • I don’t want to cut my foot on the way. Those lines are pretty long.

  • How will I find my flip-flops after the race? I don’t have to go that bad.

  • Are my feet going to burn on the blacktop after I get out of the water? I can just hold it till the race is over.

Somehow the flip-flops took care of themselves, but the issue of the bathroom…that was something that needed addressing.

There were 4,500 athletes racing with me, and judging by the lines for the port-a-potty, they all agreed.

2. Not everyone knows where they’re going. A show of hands would tell you that about half of the athletes racing in my event were new to the sport of triathlon. On the one hand, it was comforting to know that I was not alone. But on the other hand, if you followed half of the people there… you could end up in the wrong place.

Be careful of who you follow… it could be someone like me.

3. Not everyone knows what they’re doing. Before the race, I was walking with a girl in my age group, and she asked me a question about the transition. “I don’t know,” I said, “this is my first race.” Then she asked the girl next to me. She didn’t know either. So, then she yelled at the top of her lungs, “Does anybody here know what they’re doing?!”

Apparently, we were swimming in sea of clueless people, because no one said a thing.

4. Transitions aren’t for changing costumes. I should have incorporated a lot more “transition” into my workouts. I spent a solid-year training for the swim… training for the bike… training for the run. And then, what do I do on race day? Seven minutes of changing into the “right” tank top! Who knew? Next time, I’ll try not to get stuck in my garments… or better yet (and this is a novel idea), wear the same thing for all three events!

5. Take candy from strangers. My husband caught me passing out Altoids to the girls around me during T2. I couldn’t help myself… they were there… and candy is for sharing! Besides, someone told me that they help keep your nose clear while you run. I didn’t want to selfishly hoard that priceless information.

I told the girl next to me that it would make her go faster. She took one.

6. Make use of the people who plan ahead. Despite the number of newbies at the race, there were still a couple thousand people who knew what they were doing. Among them were people with balloons, whirly-gigs, brightly colored duct tape and sidewalk chalk.

The day before the race, I parked my bike next to a girl with a whirly-gig. I followed her because I knew that I did not have a whirly-gig.

I paid her back in Altoids during transition.

7. When setting up your transition area, take note of things that won’t blow away. There was a lady making giant arrows with duct tape, so I asked her if I could use some of her tape. Not wanting to be greedy, I took five inches of tape, thinking surely I’ll see this piece of duct tape when I finish the swim.

Needless to say, I got lost amidst the thousands of bikes parked in the conglomerate bike rack. I stood frozen, surveying the scene for a small whirly-gig and five inches of duct tape. One helpful lady said, “Did you lose your spot? How many racks in are you?”

“Um… I’m near a pinwheel-thing, some duct tape and two other blue bikes.”

I should have used more tape.

8. Nobody’s hitting on you… they’re just swimming. There were about two hundred people in my wave of swimmers. That seemed like a large number for one lane, but what did I know? I guess I was expecting a smooth sail across the lake, but I couldn’t help but tread and glare every time I got kicked.

My apologies to anyone I hit, kicked or swam over… I didn’t know what I was doing… I just didn’t want to die.

9. Gasping for air is not a crime. Sometimes, when you’ve been riding your bike for what feels like forever…and it’s a windy, 95-degree day, breathing can be difficult.

There’s no shame in doing whatever it takes to get oxygen to the lungs. The last mile of my ride was really hard. It was mostly uphill, and I couldn’t inhale. Exhaling wasn’t a problem at all.

I am particularly proud of the moment that I rode into the crowd of people, forcing a smile so that I looked like I could breathe. I exhaled slowly while grinning at the cameraman, and then, unable to manage any longer, I inhaled and a deep-throated, gasp came forth from my face. All the beluga whales present understood.

The Doppler Effect carried my groan past the crowd, making it impossible to blend in.

10. The human spirit is stronger than iron. There were so many people who conquered so much just to be there. A wave of two hundred cancer survivors started our race. And my husband saw a woman who had a crowd cheering her on everywhere she went. She was blind.

After the race, I met a lady on my way to use the restroom (yes…again). We exchanged congratulations and began sharing war stories from the race. We both agreed that it was really hard, and I was feeling proud of the accomplishment.

Then she turned, congratulated me again, and walked away. That’s when I noticed her prosthetic arm.

Clearly, this is a sport for everyone.