Sunday, March 27, 2011

Beyond Gorgeous.

Rarely running super early in the morning I was missing our breath-taking view in our backyard. Friday I snuck in an early run before Remicade treatment knowing the television would be programmed to Sex and the City re-runs all weekend (NO complaining here) and my booty super-glued to the couch (complaining here). While running, a camera was the only thing missing to capture this amazing view. Unknown to me, a teammate (thanks Genevieve) captured this beautiful picture the following day. Same time, same place, beautiful skyline! If you ever visit Seattle please arise early and take on this Alki scenary. Just may even just roll out of bed and run with you!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Mercer Island 5K

A lesson was learned at the Desert Tri 10K that I was NOT ready for that distance. So I plopped myself into a race half the distance instead. Over 20 TNM athletes were racing between the Half marathon, the 10K and the 5K, so it would just be "too" much fun to pass up. AND with a tempo run on my schedule it fit perfectly.

Race morning was the deceptive "sunny". While glancing outside you think tank and shorts but in reality its a much needed pants, gloves, and a hat kind of day. Luckily the 5K didn't take off until 9:30 when the temps were rising.

Zero expectations means pure enjoyment. The course is downhill'ish for the first mile and then you climb a summit for the last two. Reminder: you need MUSCLE to climb, mine have all disappeared, so these climbs were a strenuous dig-deep effort coming from the bone. My heart was left beating outside of my chest and by breathe sounding like a smoker. Enjoyment?! Yes, indeed! As for results: Luckily all the "real" runners were in the "longer" events I was able to win the age group and place fourth overall.

(Yes, that is a kid behind me!)

In other training notes, the sun has squeaked out here in Seattle. Old training buddies (and new, thanks Libby for the hook-up!) and the sparkly Specialized bike got out for an inaugural ride. Had to break the reflectors off to eliminate any harassing by the teammates! ;)

This day was a reminder of how much I LOVE this sport and the friendships. 28 miles blew by with humor, hard work, and the sun at our backs. Also happy to report there is no longer confusion when glancing at cadence and power numbers on the Cyclops Joule (it was a sad sight for awhile), feeling a little more robust each week.

We have successfully made it to the next Remicade treatment in superb health. Sitting here being pumped with more drugs and preparing for the next few days of rest I am thankful and happy with the way things are progressing.

The wishes of a solid training block are within days of reach!

Enjoy the sunshine, the races, and the friendships this upcoming weekend and beyond.

Friday, March 18, 2011


This boomerang is on the way back!

I am one week from my next treatment and am perplexed by this turnaround. A number of things have changed in a few (not-so-short) weeks.

*vicoden-be-gone (yep, was taking 2+ a day, eventually you stop counting)
*meds cut in half (my face may be returning to normal size now)
*eating fruit and veggies (those got knixed on day one of the hospital)
*sleeping through the night (10+ bathroom trips a night became the "norm")
*sleeping on tummy or any other comfy position my heart desires
*running (or any exercise) without emergency restroom (or non-restroom breaks...oops ;))

Unbelievable how things are turning around (insert happy girl here). Living so much in the moment, I had not realized how gloomy my health had become. There was an acceptance of a "new-normal", a different way of life. Now that I am returning to the "real-normal" I forgot how it feels to be unconfined. Much more appreciation for everything now.

And why, you may ask, did I post the angry bird picture? While away on this hiatus I became addicted to the game (thanks team for the ipad) and (confession!) passed every level. Is that something to be proud of? If you haven't played, I warn you, "don't start"!

But this lil' bird does the "boomrang" and he has to turn-around at the "perfect" time in order to "win". Knew he came into my life for a reason!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Desert Tri

Yep, this was a couple weekends ago, my excuse: I felt like I ran an entire marathon. Recovery has been brutal!

A few weeks ago (or a month...who's counting...its snow, its rain, its minus 40 degrees out!) we froze and froze and needed a sunshiny place to hang our hats. Nothing better than going to visit three of our favorite girlfriends, Tracy, Heather, and Ashlea, all whom have lived in Seattle and were "smart" and made the move to Sunny California.

Mark had some miles upon miles to put in. I, on the other hand, had some tanning and friend time to be had. It's a tough act balancing sleeping in, waiting for the Havianas store to open, and getting in pool time, but somehow we managed.

Luckily there was a race in Palm Spring to add to the top of this Sunday or Sundae! A few of us are just getting back into the racing front. Thankfully TYR suited us up in their new competitor gear and sent us out to see what we were made of! 1st place!

Heather started us out with her fastest swim to date (was not a surprise seeing her improvements in the pool). If you can check out her FB video you can see!

Mega-Meg busted out a bike split that HAD to have made the men's (and womens) jaws drop as she zoomed by!

And I ran a marathon (okay, 6.1 miles) or so it felt! My goal was to break a: 48 since my training included the following:
Leading up to race week 20-30 minute runs- VERY frequently, VERY easy.
Monday leading up to the race: 4.5 miles non-stop
And two 20' runs all at 8:30's or slower.
Sunday RACE DAY!

I was incredibly happy running a 44ish and a 7:24 pace. Yes, I needed a gu and the last 2 miles were miserably painful....but I wouldn't change it for anything. Hard to believe I could run this pace in a half ironman just less than a year ago. I will be back, time will tell soon and I can't wait!

Mark did phenomenal with his first race of the season. He has been focusing on pacing and running off the bike and he nailed it!

Luckily we will be back in just a few short weeks, this time with my bike and with more miles to conquer.

Missing the ladies already, can't wait for more outings!

Monday, March 07, 2011

Swim meet.

When was the last time you did something for the first time? This was the motto of my first triathlon ever. The Seattle Danskin. It has stuck.

In getting back into things, it truly feels like everything is "new". A little scary, a ton of unknowns, followed up with a small sense of accomplishment. Attempting to find a routine normalcy, different from what I have become accustomed to the last 7 months. Finding myself feeling like the ugly duckling going into anything, a little awkward, a little gun shy, a little insecure.

With the help of some friends I went back to my roots to get going. Okay, swim meets are not new, but it has been 10 years since doing a swim meet. I figured "muscle memory" would take over...boy was I wrong!

Started with the 100 free, and luckily my swim buddy was in my wave, whom led me through Fat Salmon in July. Ironically we got the exact same time, however, he paced it WAY better than myself. Where I faded by 4 seconds in the second 50....oops.

Then it was the 2011 200 freestyle relay (video) of the yah! Mark lead us off (no blocks for this guy because those goggles were going to stay on!) His FIRST swim meet ever. Then two law students, Megan and Brent (check out the air-kick that has us crying and laughing in synch). I anchored and the speed off the blocks has gone bye-bye!

50 butterfly was just minutes later and was my favorite event of the day. Then the 100 back. Using the wisdom I acquired from the 100 free earlier in the day, the second 50 was nearly the same as the first. Success!

By my last event, the 50 free, I was TOAST. Slower than the relay, slower than the first 50 of the 100 free performed earlier that was time to call it a wrap!

Thanks to TYR for goggles that stayed on, the suit that let me play, and the bag that carries all the goods!

So much fun to be racing, diving off blocks and laughing with friends again. Forgot how freezing it is getting in and out of the water and having a gazillion towels weighing 100 lbs each after the meet. The good ole' days were celebrated, but it will be another year or ten before you see me doing this again (then again nationals is in April....tempting!)

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

TYR Kinetic.

It has arrived!
TYR Kinetic

My girlfriend Heather has been raving about this stuff and I have been eyeing it for months! I was ecstatic to be able to order nearly the entire line (can't wait for the shorts to arrive!). As many of you know my shopping habits mimic my training habits and so I jumped on the Kinect bandwagon like jumping on a brand new bike or any bike for that matter!

What do I love about the gear?

#1 The shirts/tops are LONG...yes, cover your tummy, over the waistband of your shorts, comforted bliss.

#2 HELLO PINK (need I say more!)......and BLUE is following closely behind!!!!!

(cycle short and run capri and kitty)

#3 Thumbholes and/or longer sleeves to keep the paws warm. Warm hands,warm heart!

#4 Matchy, matchy....yep, you gotta order it all to match it all up.....they are still working on the scunchies :)!

TYR did a number on this line with their creativity, design, and providing the athlete with the necessities of looking good and feeling good! The sizing is spot on too. Tops fit perfect to size and bottoms too (but if in between sizes on bottoms I suggest sizing down).

Next week I will be modeling in Palm Springs rather than these fine plastic hangers.

I put the stamp of approval that this stuff will stay!
PS. NO, I did not only get four pieces! Not shown: short sleeved top, tank top, sport top and duplicates :)