Thursday, June 22, 2006

Summer is Here

Man is it HOT outside. The heat index is at 100. But it is the humidity that gets you. I can't tell you how hot is was this morning at 6 a.m. when we were running, but I can say that I was dripping with sweat before the first mile. When I got home, after 4 miles and Mr. Preschool said I didn't have time for a shower, that just about ruined my day. Bless him for changing his mind and sending me upstairs to rinse off.
Today is Daisyhead Maisy's first day with no school. Change is in store for all of us. I'm used to droping her off at school and then running a few miles on the way to the pool with Redfish. Now, I'll have to get all my workouts in without kids, since I 86ed the double jogger (I can only deal with two whiney voices at a time when I'm running, mine and one kid.)
Daisyhead was such a mess yesterday. She couldn't stop obsessing over a plastic gem she had glued to her cubby and wouldn't come home until we dislodged it from what seemed like crazy glue. When we got home she went to her room and played with it for several hours. She came out complaining that she had a headache from concentraiting too hard on playing. Transitions have always been especially hard for her and leaving Pre-K is a big tranistion. Saying good-bye is always tough, but more so when you are 5. Her best friend from class won't be coming back to her school again, so I think she was really sad about that.
Saturday is a big workout day for us. Deposit day. Pay now, or pay later. 24 miles (mine will be reinforced with extra hills) and then run 3. Sunday we'll run 3, then swim for an hour, then go eat as a team and discuss our goals for the year.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Not Enough Time to Get Where I Want to Go

I still haven't signed up for a race. I don't know what it is. Maybe I know better than signing up for 2 races in 2 weeks. IronGirl is 8/27/06 in Columbia, MD. Sandman is 9-17-06 in Virginia Beach and is a personal goal for me to complete this race, ever since I had to give up on it back in 2002 when they delayed it due to the huricane and I couldn't make the make up date.
I'm just a novice, and just doing these for fun. But also, I know most of the triathletes designate A B and C races.
I guess 3Sports/Shady Grove on 7/23/06 (my birthday) is my C race
IronGirl is my A race (but I wish I had more time to train for it)
and Sandman is my B race, that I'm doing just cause I have to, for me.
But the schedule doesn't really make any sense. I'm fighting some demons, and I know me, I'm looking for an excuse.
Yesterday was a great workout, 22 miles on the bike and 1 mile running, but also, it was the kind of workout that made me realize how far I have to go. Up on the Capital One extention at West Creek, I bottomed out on the hill at 8.8 mph. I know if I'm going to do IronGirl it needs to be 11 mph, not 8. And, on the 1 mile run, I had to take a break and walk for a while after 1/2 mile. I want to/need to do the things that will make me prepared for the IronGirl race. I'm just scared, and worried that there is not enough time.
But you know what? This is a process. And completing the IronGirl can be a goal for this year, and getting a great time and running 3 miles straight after that extrememly challenging technical bike can be a goal for next year too.
Mr. Preschool was so sweet yesterday. He told me that I had inspired him to bike and get fit. I think he sensed that I really could use some encouragement. He said he had never been more fit in his life, and I helped him do it. He said that he never thought he could be the type who was really strong or physically fit at something. I'm so proud of him, now that he is. He has been biking to work every day. His 40 mile Father's Day ride today, makes my 22 look like a cakewalk. I guess that explains why he is crashed on the couch sleeping while I'm up writing this.
We both mentioned not having examples in our parents for physical fitness. And how much harder that made things for us as kids. Especially when it came time for the Presidential Fitness test, which wrecked havoc in our school years.
Redfish is inspired too. He got so excited on Friday when I pulled up at a light next to a cyclist, It made his entire day, when the guy pulled up his shades, turned around and said "hi" to him.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

I Belong

Something that has really inspired me recently is reading this blog Run Big, by Nancy Toby. Not only did she just finish Eagleman, beating her old time by an hour, but she just has the greatest attitude. Each of us has our own struggles as a triathlete, and I guess I identify with her becuase some of her struggles are the same as mine.
Just before her race, she wrote an entry about preparing for her Half Ironman race. So, the thing that stuck me is that she says to herself, I belong. I Belong here. When you don't look like everyone else, and you don't feel like everyone else and maybe you're even here for a different reason, it is so, so important to remember, I belong here. Because really anyone who can and wants to do the race belongs.
But, when your whole team orders race jerseys that match, and you just can't buy one because it would never fit, then, you feel like you don't belong. To fit the largest size tri top that Sugoi offers, a large, I would have to have a 30-32 in waist and be a 34C or 36B. Maybe if i quit breastfeeding Redfish and loose 50 lbs. ....
There is nothing like that to make you feel like you don't belong even if maybe you were feeling pretty good because you sucked it up and woke up at 5 am to run 5 miles this morning. Even if you did have to get there 15 minutes early so that you could finish in the same time.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Choosing My Race

I've been thinking alot lately. Trying to decide where I want to go with this triathlon thing -- what i want from it. I guess it's not surprising that i still haven't figured it out. I have a friend who used to always say she'd never do an Ironman, or half Ironman or even an Olympic distance race becuase that was just to extreme for her. She wanted balance in her life, and training for a sprint triathlon was just right for her life. Even though she won 1st place in her age group, she was satisfied with that and nothing more.
Now me, I'm not competative like that -- meaning I'll never come in first, but I'm not sure that i'll be satisfied with sprint triathlons forever. Balance in my life? There is hardly any balance when you have a toddler. You can try your best and that is all you can do. Between training for a sprint and working part time and trying to be a good partner as a wife, balance happens somedays and it doesn't others. Training for a longer race might just mean a different kind of balance.
I thought I was going to try the Naylor's Beach Olympic distance Aquabike, even said it was made for me, but I don't like the idea of not running at all. Plus, I can't get any details on it. The race director won't email me back.
And ever since I found out about the Ryka IronGirl race I've been thinking now that will be one cool race. It is all women. God bless all 1,600 of them! that is 4 times as many folks as i've raced with before. And, it also sounds like a race created just for me because it is a longer than a sprint race. A long swim (1000 M), a long bike (30K) and a short run (5K). It is a premier race, attracting women from all over the U.S. and it is being put on by the same folks as Eagleman. Plus they are doing the same race in several cities all across the U.S., it's creating a buzz.
So, I'm supposed to decide by today. Naylor's price increase is tomorrow. This is really hard...most of my team is doing Naylor's, but I know from friends that it is not the best run race. Paritcipants told me that last year the swim was almost twice as long as it was supposed to be., when you are looking at your watch and freaking out becuase you've never swum that slow in all your life, you'll be panicing to say the least. Several friends will be racing at IronGirl, but I'll have to drive out of town (Columbia, Md.) and stay with my in-laws if i do it. Both races are the same exact day August 27, 2006.
You know what, it is great to only have this question as a concern tonight. Redfish had been so sick yesterday and last night with a fever of 104 degrees, I didn't even get to work out. Or stop worrying about him for 5 minutes. Or sleep for longer than 45 minutes at a stretch for that matter.
I guess it doesn't really matter at all.

Choosing My Race

I've been thinking alot lately. Trying to decide where I want to go with this triathlon thing -- what i want from it. I guess it's not surprising that i still haven't figured it out. I have a friend who used to always say she'd never do an Ironman, or half Ironman or even an Olympic distance race becuase that was just to extreme for her. She wanted balance in her life, and training for a sprint triathlon was just right for her life. Even though she won 1st place in her age group, she was satisfied with that and nothing more.
Now me, I'm not competative like that -- meaning I'll never come in first, but I'm not sure that i'll be satisfied with sprint triathlons forever. Balance in my life? There is hardly any balance when you have a toddler. You can try your best and that is all you can do. Between training for a sprint and working part time and trying to be a good partner as a wife, balance happens somedays and it doesn't others. Training for a longer race might just mean a different kind of balance.
I thought I was going to try the Naylor's Beach Olympic distance Aquabike, even said it was made for me, but I don't like the idea of not running at all. Plus, I can't get any details on it. The race director won't email me back.
And ever since I found out about the Ryka IronGirl race I've been thinking now that will be one cool race. It is all women. God bless all 1,600 of them! that is 4 times as many folks as i've raced with before. And, it also sounds like a race created just for me because it is a longer than a sprint race. A long swim (1000 M), a long bike (30K) and a short run (5K). It is a premier race, attracting women from all over the U.S. and it is being put on by the same folks as Eagleman. Plus they are doing the same race in several cities all across the U.S., it's creating a buzz.
So, I'm supposed to decide by today. Naylor's price increase is tomorrow. This is really hard...most of my team is doing Naylor's, but I know from friends that it is not the best run race. Paritcipants told me that last year the swim was almost twice as long as it was supposed to be., when you are looking at your watch and freaking out becuase you've never swum that slow in all your life, you'll be panicing to say the least. Several friends will be racing at IronGirl, but I'll have to drive out of town (Columbia, Md.) and stay with my in-laws if i do it. Both races are the same exact day August 27, 2006.
You know what, it is great to only have this question as a concern tonight. Redfish had been so sick yesterday and last night with a fever of 104 degrees, I didn't even get to work out. Or stop worrying about him for 5 minutes. Or sleep for longer than 45 minutes at a stretch for that matter.
I guess it doesn't really matter at all.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Chaos

This morning was total chaos.
Maybe that is what made me run upstair and change into my running clothes on my way out the door. Yes it added to the chaos temporarily, but gave me a release in the end.
Redfish, bless him, let me run. I drove Mr. Preschool's SUV to the Vita Course because the giant jogging stroller won't fit in my subcompact. It was a beautiful day, but I still couldn't believe how many folks were out walking. There were groups of 60- and 70-year-old African American men walking 8 across. A woman, who looked to be in her late 50's with an oxygen tank and a walker.

Redfish ate animal crackers. I ran. Redfish ate Letter Cookies. I ran. Redfish drank juice. I ran. He was done after 2 miles. But I wasn't going to let that be it. I had an idea to run the next 1/2 mile, go over to the park at the Carilon and let him play then run back and finish my last 1/2 mile. Only one problem, OK, two problems. I forgot his shoes and I forgot my water.
So, I let him play barefoot. And I had his last swig of backwashed warm juice as my water.
When we got to the playground the SEAL Team was jumping in and out of the fenced play area. I watched in amazement. One of the women said, you know you want to do it, go ahead. Most of them had gloves on to keep from tearing their flesh on any loose wire fragments of the fence top fringe.
Yeah, she was right, I wanted to do it. So, I did. It was fun. But Redfish loved it! Loved watching Mama jump. He cheered me on. He tried to climb the fence. He was so excited I did it 5 more times just for him. Each time was harder though, and by number 8, I was done. Now my knees are kiling me. What was I thinking? So much for the Seal team. I think I'll stick with triathlons.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

One Stroke at a Time

I'm feeling really good. I showed up for the Richmond Tri Club coached swim this morning at the ACAC on Southside. I was pretty nervous, since i'd only been once before and it is always a killer work out. We did 3300 meters (just over 2 miles) total -- the main set was 5 X 400.

Since we were swiming in a 50 meter pool, that was alot less flip turns, alot less rest.
I just wish I hadn't whined so much when he announced our main set. I was visibly freaked when he told us we were to do them on the 8 and if we did we'd earn 60 seconds rest before the next one. The first one came in at 8:29, which was fine with me. I got to rest for 31 seconds and then kick out another 400 meters. Only problem was we kept getting a few seconds slower and by the time we were on no. 4, we had like 5 seconds rest before we started the last one.
But, I did it. And, it felt good. Yes, it was hard, but it will be easier next time.
And, maybe next time I'll have the courage to go on the 30 mile bike ride that follows.
One step at a time. One stroke at a time. I'm starting to get the hang of this. The more I do, the more I want to do. Maybe that is how we ended up with an Ironman.

Friday, June 02, 2006

The Visitation

Going to Margie's visitation was really strange. It was like stepping back in time 10 years, when I used to work at Style. No one really looked like they had aged, everyone looked the same even though I hadn't seen them in 10 years. Only one person looked different, and she was 4 the last time I saw her.
I felt bad I couldn't stay for the funeral, since I only had someone watching Redfish for 30 minutes, but seeing that it was standing room only made me feel like I made the right decision. I wasn't close to Margie and there were so many people who were. Just being there was really moving, especially seeing all those folks who had only one thing in common -- that they loved her.
When I go, if people come together to remember me....make sure it is outside near nature. I've never been an inside kind of person.