Friday, October 29, 2010

Maui Xterra and living FREE

We were ready to experience Maui, ready to experience Xterra, and ready to cheer on our friend John . We spent a week in Maui, enjoying life, enjoying a vacation without bikes or racing. No pressure. The week leading up to race day was spent at happy hours, in the sunshine, and at the beach, oh and a ton of sleeping. (laughing so hard it hurt!)

We giggled, laughed, and enjoyed the little things, like water slides and crystal clear water and view....this was so important because lateley things have been stressful.... with the minimal training, the body changing and just the fact that life has been "different". This vacation was exactly what we needed. For the first time in a long time I was able to feel free, able to feel a little more like myself.

(Mark was convinced the fish was trying to eat him!)
The non-racing idea didn't last long once we found out there was a 5k and 10k race on the course. We just HAD to experience the terrain, the course, and the challenges that were to be faced on Sunday. So we signed up. I have not ran a step in over 10 weeks so I just went with walk/jog in mind (against doctors orders...BUT I have been SO SO SO good in listening). Really those climbs were so big that walking was all that needed to be done.

I know you must be thinking that I was pushing it because I got a second place podium for the division...which I am happy about, but truly all these "fasties" were in the 10K. I was beat by TEN kids under the age of 13 (I was racing a kid that came up to my hip).

Mark LOVED the race, and was soaked from running along the shore line. But managed himself a 3rd place division slot. However, he is most proud that he got to share in the spotlight on the podium with Yvonne.

The $25 entry fee was nothing when we look at all the perks that came with this race, we each received:
A race shirt
Box of GU
$25 g.c. to Lulu's (not lululemon ;))
6 pack of Gatorade
Pound of Kona Coffee
Coffee Mug

A huge highlight of the week was meeting up with my long lost pal Tracy! It was like we had seen each other every day for the past two years!

We dined to the nines and failed to skimp even in the slightest at Fairmont thanks to our friends the "Swistaks" (and fab bridesmaid!)
(Beautiful sunset!)
The event Xterra event itself was so low-key, so beautiful, and so fun! John had an amazing race at Xterra (and thank you for the beautiful stay), although we could barely recognize anyone with their faces covered in dirt "masks". He has intrigued us all to participate next year...hmmmm...

To living life and to being "free"!

Sunday, October 10, 2010


So several of you have raced an ironman and I have sat on my boot'ee the entire time......was so intrigued and captivated by your amazing days that I could not even get myself up to eat or go to the bathroom (okay, I did get up but it was fast). Just did not want to miss a moment!!!
However, I did not miss waking up with tan lines like these: (you know each of you have them) Then again that new Scape product could prevent these!

We hurried home from the run clinic and as we pulled in the garage and this conversation happens:

Mark: "Can you imagine if we came home to no internet today?
Me: "Shush, why would you say such a thing?"

As we walk in and rush to get all 3 computers going (Thank you team for the awesome ipad) guess what? Internet and cable are OUT. Yep, OUT! For 45 min and then it magically appeared, then disappeared again around 5pm so we rushed to our favorite Mexican joint that thankfully has internet. Sat there until the computers went dead and came home to internet. Can you say Mark jinxed us!!! Ha!

The race was amazing on all accounts. I had yet to witness a pass in the ironman distance where two athletes hung side by side, stride by stride, it was unbelievable. Witnessing this from a computer, I believe was almost better than being there (although the sun on the back and mai tais were sure missed). I was also busy counting bike and run cadences, analyzing how each athlete raced, how they took fuel, when they were aero, when they stood up, etc, etc. I had a swim coach that made me watch and analyze and it has stuck with me for years. You can learn so much from the sidelines. The online video coverage was amazing and if it was recorded I could continue to watch it over and over and over.

Watching made me think back more and more about racing and the journey. It was a clear reminder that ANYTHING can happen on race day (especially in Kona) and that no matter what every athlete there has a huge amount of support around them from all over the country. The FB posts to all the athletes were amazing to see. Your family and friends just want YOU (the athlete) to enjoy the experience, smile as often as possible and are happy to support you along the way. Times, places, etc, are only a small portion of what racing means to everyone on the outside. We, as athletes are our biggest critics and need to sometimes step back and realize how lucky we actually are...we get to push the limits, test ourselves, and experience the highs of being an athlete. And when we are not 100% satisfied it is important to understand that there are several more races to come and more Kona's too (my day there still awaits...I do believe third time is a charm for this girl!) So many people never take this risk to find out WHO they really are and what talents lie within them. Congratulations to each and everyone of you who raced at Kona, Boston, Chicago, and Victoria. You have inspired so many and I know every one of you will be back for more! Thank you for reminding me of the little things that are truly the big things.

And while yesterday was about sitting, I was exhausted from the emotions.... got myself a nap today, but that was after a 2 hour walk, in the rain! No complaints here though because it was on some amazingly beautiful trails at Cougar Mountain. It was so much fun to be "out and about" and to be with friends. Okay, getting lost for 20 min we could have done without but we managed to navigate our way back to the homeland, soaked, dirty and with numb fingertips.

I decided to log myself back into training peaks since this "walk" was a breakthrough workout. Counting back and it has been 9 full weeks of ZERO exercise (yep, went from 20 to zero hours overnight).

Things continue to look up, but am still under close watch....landed myself in the ER a few weeks ago again and officially am a "frequent flyer" there.....really trying to avoid that place! But the docs and I have come up with a formula for meds (yes, I have to compromise there too, just as I do with the exercise prescriptions) that may be the magic trick going into this next treatment :)

Have a started to lose my mind? Possibly, BUT it is what needs to be done to someday be out there in the races, doing what I love to do. Being sidelined is not "fun" but it is "fun" to see so much from the "other" side. To appreciate racing from a whole other level.

Until next time, the TRX, the bike trainer, and many more walks are lined up and I am STOKED!