Sunday, May 30, 2010

Ohhhh, the love that hurts so good

This weekend was jam packed full of BASEBALL, BASEBALL & more BASEBALL.

A two-day tournament that started early on both Saturday & Sunday required an even earlier start because of the long drive.

With 3 games today and a 10 mile run on my schedule, I packed my running gear and thought "5 before the start of the first game. 5 more before the afternoon game." If things got crazy, well, I'll do 5--2 mile runs. Whatever I have to do to get'er done.

At the buttcrack of dawn, we're packing up to head to the game.

We arrive at the field. Jman unpacks his gear, Mr. Tea heads to the bench & I grab my water, garmin....and well just for the heck of it, I'll bring my watch. Yes, it's overkill; I already have my garmin.

As I start running, I feel particularly.....
hmmmm what's the right word?


I don't know why. My love-hate relationship with running is like a reality show. We send each other notes on the sly talking about how great our time will be together once we can sneak away. Yet, it never fails that we're cursing day each other was born at the end of a speed day or long run.

Yet, as soon as I start running. I feel different. Yes, there are hills.  Not like where I live, but they're hills all the same.

Just as I hit a half mile, my garmin dies. Now, I count on my garmin for times like this...I've been known to get lost. Only to flip the switch on the garmin to allow me to track backwards.

The garmin is 8 years old. Mr. Tea bought it for me to replace my even older one. We've had some good runs me and the garmin. I guess, technology doesn't last forever. I've worn out my welcome at the Garmin support desk, even gotten the *restraining* order via certified mail (WHATEVA).

So, when the garmin died. I remembered back to so many years of wonderful runs. I  look at the garmin with it's blank screen....hold my fists up to the air and scream: ARE YOU F*CKING KIDDING ME? YOU HAVE TO DIE NOW YOU LOUSY PIECE OF SH!T?!

Give or take a few expletives, I realized that in some strange twist of fate that I had my watch with me. The sky opened up and the angels came out singing "You can still run 30 out and 30 back and not worry about distance sweetie".

But I don't know WHERE I'M GOING! There are GOATS in the street up ahead. GOATS!

I stand in the middle of the street....yes the middle....what's gonna happen? I'm gonna get run over by a goat?  I look west: ominous.  I look east: definitely my better option.

I squint ahead. I see a dot moving. By george! It's a MAN! And he's RUNNING! Follow that LOCAL!

I see him off in the distance. As previously mentioned, I feel


I have no idea how fast I'm running, but I know it is considerably faster than my normal long run pace. But my heartrate...make that PERCEIVED HEARTRATE thanks to that LOUSY PIECE OF SH!T low.

I follow the local. He weaves in and out of country roads and then turns into suburbia.  I'm slowly catching up to him when I look down at my watch and realize, time's up, time to head back to catch the game.

Of course, that's when I realize that I was so focused on the Man, that I didn't pay attention to how I ended up where I am.

I quickly send a txt msg to Mr. Tea saying "GREAT RUN! On my way back"

No need to worry the poor man.

I look North.....that looks familiar....then South....that looks familiar.

I scratch my head, bite the inside of my cheek. Just then an old light blue Ford pick up truck pulls up. An old man about 130 years old in a red baseball cap rolls down his window and says something that sounds like, "Wharya goan? Ye luk lohst."

I squint at him a moment while my brain attempts to translate this new language. Ah yes, got it. My brain sends down the message: "Young lady. You seemed troubled. Might I assist you in your wanderings?"

"Yes!" I go over to his window and the stench of old tabaccy climbs up my nostrils "I'm looking for Pioneer Park"

"Yerkinder fer from 'neer. yer ned to get yerself t'oldhaer road"

"Toddler Road?" I look at him questioningly.
"TODE lahk frog. TODEHARK road"

Who the hell names a street TOADHAWK?" Aren't those things mutually exclusive? I mean, on the food chain their paths don't even cross.

I step away from the truck, thank the old man.

Good, I think to myself, I just need to get to TODDLER F*CKING ROAD and I would prefer avoiding any type of Deliverance type people while I'm doing it.

Eventually, well 15 minutes later I find myself face to face with the herd of goats, and I know I'm on the right path. Things in the road are starting to look familiar: I remember that beer can, that old tire, the red thong. I'm on my way back.

Just then, I hear a loud crack that seemed to be coming from the trees. I peer through the trees to see a baseball game just starting and a player running to first.


Saturday, May 29, 2010

I'm not Flabby. I'm just Flat.

NOOOOOO!!!! She screamed at me trying to lurch backward and throwing my balance off as we slowly climbed the stairs.

Yes, you need to get outside! I grunted as I grabbed her around the neck and lifted her front end up, avoiding the drag up the stairs.

It's too bright! The sun hurts my eyes. Let me just stay in the basement. We can watch movies. You like watching movies. She started crying.

I hate when she does that to me. All winter we watch movies together, never worrying about the weather outside or what we need to wear.

Finally, we get to the stop of the stairs. Gasping I sit her in the corner staring at her. "We have to do it. You LIKE to do it. You just haven't been outside in 7 months. I bet all your friends are out there. "

No one else has to go outside.Besides, I'm SO outa shape. I'm flabby. Look I need to be cleaned.

I don't care, and I don't want to hear it anymore. We're going no matter what.

I grabbed my garmin edge and snapped it into place.

OWWWW! She howled. Why'd you go and do that?

Because I know how you are. You won't give any effort unless you have a friendly reminder to pick up the pace.

I grabbed the water bottle. She's just being ridiculous, I thought to myself. It's just the first ride of the year. She's acting like I'm making her do a century.

I slammed the water bottle into the holder. Water splashed up all over me.

NOW look what you did! I'm all wet!

For goodness sakes, please shut up! You'll dry the minute we head out.

pfffffffft. pffffffft.

Did you just let the air out of your tires?

No....must have been that burrito I ate last night.

I gently squueze the front tire.  Flat.  I feel the back tire. Flat. Ugh. Wait right here.

I pumped up both tires and turn and look at her. See? You aren't flabby. You just needed air in your tires.

What if I don't remember where to go or how to turn or climb or go fast or deal with traffic.

Now you're just being silly. I responded. You can't forget. It's just like riding a......

Thursday, May 27, 2010


30% off your favorite anti-aging products!

Get your best bikini-bod THIS summer with 40% off all weight loss products!

....the email screamed at me.

Anti-wrinkle formulas--GUARANTEED to eliminate those crow's feet!

Make your skin GLOW!

Take this magic pill and have the flat tummy you've always dreamed of!

Every morning, I wake up to these types of email messages.

I shake my head and hit the DELETE button.

For a few hundred bucks a month, I can have glowing wrinkle free skin, eliminate cellulite, and have my best bikini-bod ever.

All I have to do is "rub the lotion on it's skin".

I got'cher anti-aging kit right here....

You want bright skin?  How about eating fruits and veggies...

You want to less sluggish? How about drinking water instead of soda of any kind...

You want to eliminate the afternoon energy crashes? How about eating meals throughout the day.

You want to shed a few pounds? How about eliminating sugar....

You want to feel more energetic? How about busting your ass with some kind, ANY kind of physical activity....EVERY DAY.

Thank you very much, but I have my own anti-aging program.

And all it costs is my own blood sweat & tears.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Success is in the eye of the beholder

On Tuesday, Helen and I swam together.

During our swim, we started talking about running. Then, out of nowhere, she rips off her goggles, shakes her finger at me and says, "I stopped by that hill you told me to run"

Me, taking a step backward thinking she's about to hit me.

Helen: Yes, I did. You know what I think? I think you're crazy. That hill is huge.

Me: Yes, it's big. But you don't have to run the whole hill. Start at the bottom, run a bit, turn around and walk down. Do it over and over.

Helen: My trainer even said to me, "She wants you to the run THAT hill???"

Me: I know it's big. But you of all people know that you don't know what you can accomplish until you try. I told you that I'd love to run it with you. Do you want me to go?

Helen: Not the first time, let me just go do it the first time by myself.

Me: Ok. Bits and pieces, Helen. Look at your swim. Last week, you swam 9 laps. Today, you did 16.

Two days later, my phone rings. I know the number. It's Helen.

"Tea, it's HELEN"

I ran the hill! I didn't stop! I made it all the way to the top. I did it! I'm so happy. Next time I run it, I want you to go with me.

A smile so big stretched across my face. I yelled out and starting jumping all over the house. I might have even thrown in the cabbage patch dance.

When we both calmed down, I said "You are amazing. Simply.Amazing." I sat there with the phone dangling in my hand, speechless.

Success tends to do that to me. Sometimes the feelings are so overwhelming, I'll break down. Sometimes it is the adventure that stuns me into silence.

As I head out on my run, I thought about Helen. Here is a woman who is quite old by many people's standards who was in a relationship where her husband took care of everything until he passed away.  She never considered running or swimming or biking or setting goals for herself.

Then one day, she drove past the gym and thought, "why couldn't I do that?"

And she did.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

I am the Oak

I am running 4 miles today.

We went right from winter to summer as we had snow last week, and today will be almost 90 degrees.

My concern about today's run isn't the 90 degrees.

It isn't the piercing sun.

It's the wind.

Where the water allows me an escape from the elements, wind is not my friend.

I love running in rain, fog, snow. I've run in hail and thunderstorms. Most of the time, these runs weren't intentional, but I didn't mind it so much when the storm came in.

The wind is altogether different.

When the wind kicks up, I lean into the wind, arming myself as if I were going into battle. I always imagine myself as a jouster, leaning forward, screaming out, attacking the wind....somehow alsways missing my target as the wind spins and jockies to new directions.

As I watch the news, the meterologists talks about record highs and 50mph winds.

I sip my coffee and look out the window.

I stare at the maple tree. I look at the oak tree.

It's so beautiful how the trees can take a stand against the wind.  Their branches hardly move against the solid base. The leaves blow, but the tree remains standing against the wind. Strong yet flexible.

But the tree isn't fighting the wind, like I do. The tree isn't leaning into an attack position. The tree is just standing its ground.

I want to be like the tree, strong base with my hair blowing like leaves on a tree.

I can make my peace with the wind.

I am strong. I am flexible.

I am the oak.

At that moment, a trash can flies through the air, right in front of my window.

I sip my coffee and watch the can crash into the side of the garage.

Maybe I can be the oak tomorrow.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Thurs Swim

There's nothing to see here....simply writing down my workout....move along people.
(oh, but I DO want to thank you for your support)

I was scheduled for 1000m today. When I get to 1000m, my distorted distance perspective has me thinking, "That's not very much. I have 45 minutes dedicated to this swim. Maybe I should just do the 2250 that I had scribbled out."


Of course, I can do more.

That's not the point of this workout. The point of this workout is to start swimming again consistently.

I tuck my ego deep inside my swimcap and decide to finish the 4 sets, which granted does put me over the 1000 by 350m, but I feel good.

Therein lies catch. 1350, I feel great. Jumping into 2250....maybe not....maybe I would have sacrificed form. Maybe I would be too tired for my run later today.

The run.  That's what this is about afterall.

Warm Up:
2 x150 swim
100m kick (I do kicking drills on my back)
50 drill

Do the following 4 times
2x25m catch up (:10)
2x25m underwater recovery (:10)
4x25 Build (:15)

100m backstroke


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

From mermaid to shark

It's no secret that I love swimming.

I love the meditative aspect of swimming in the pool. I love the muted world: the way sounds become muffled. I love the sound of water moving below the surface. I love the blurred vision of seeing others underwater or the fogging glare coming in through my goggles.

Taking swimming outside is even more magical. The sun sparkling off the water, the fish below, the plants floating by, the blue sky above....the clouds.

I've joke about being the mermaid, but that's how it is for me. Sometimes I go underwater and see how long I can hold my breath....I imagine twisting and turning and flipping around underwater.

When I'm in the pool, I see the other people in the lanes as schools of fish, swimming back and forth, all around. We're like one big mer-people family.

Today was a mermaid day in the pool.

Today Helen met me at the pool. The pool was pretty empty when we got there. So, we selected two lanes next to each other.

After we started swimming, I took a break and looked up and noticed a woman standing at the edge of the pool. She looked mighty irritated.

When I asked if she would like to share a lane, she immediately huffed and puffed, gave me her angry eyes and started grumbling about how long she waited.

Then, she turned to me and said, "If you don't mind, I'd like you to stay on your side instead of doing circles. I don't want to be slowed down."

I sort of shake my head in disbelief and think, "Really? You don't want to be slowed down?"

"Wow", I respond, "You must be really fast."

Mean Lady: "yes, I'm a triathlete. I'm training for a half iron race. It's a 1.2 mile swim. It just gets so frustrating to share lanes with people like her." She says as she points to my 80 year old friend Helen, who is training for her 2nd triathlon.

Me: Wow, I will definitely try to stay out of your way. I just have a short workout. I'll be done before you know it.

I watch Helen swim. She's come a long way. I remember we first met in this very pool. She was trying out her wetsuit and didn't even know how to put it on. Now, when I watch her, she looks all-pro to me. Helen's been through a very rough time recently. She's dealing with many family issues, and still makes an effort to workout almost every day.

I look at Mean Lady.

I felt the mermaid take her leave.

I watched mean lady swim. I waited for her to get roughly 3/4 of the way down the lane, and I took off.

Under the water I looked forward and could see her come into view. I went from mermaid to shark in about 2 strokes.

I could feel my speed pick up as I started tracking her. It was like she was bait on the end of a line. I reached her feet. I passed her midsection. Then I hit the wall and passed her full on in the turn.

I don't know why her comments made me so angry. Normally, I will just let those types of things roll off.

Maybe it's because I will always remember what it's like starting out. I'll remember my first days in the pool and struggling with 3:00 100's.

I'll remember not being able to run for a period of time and taking my first steps back to recovery, thinking that a 15:00 mile was next to impossible.

I'll remember getting on my bike and having tears in my eyes when I managed 12 mph climbing.

We all are where we are. Some of us are just starting. Some of us are starting over. Some of us are having our best year ever. That might mean a podium stand or a bottom 50% finish.

The shark knows that. It's not a speed that demands respect.

It's DOING it. It's the committment. It's being in the gym, on the road, in the pool day in and day out.

And dammit all: the little ego queen needs to be taught a lesson.

Back and forth I went, lap after lap, I sliced through the water, lapping her again and again.

At some point, mean lady got out of the pool.

I saw Helen swim over to the stairs and start to climb out. She turned and yelled at me "I didn't drown! I thought I'd only be able to do 5 laps, but I did 9!"

With a huge smile, I said: I know! I watched you swim. You were the best swimmer here today. I can't believe how great you did. You've come a long way.

She walked over to my lane, scrunched up her face and said: by the way, you kicked that girl's ass. And, I know why you did.

Me, smiling: You do, huh? 

Helen winked at me and whispered: Sometimes water is thicker than blood.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Back to being me

This week I go back to my regular training that includes swimming, biking, running, strength training, yoga, and stretching.

I couldn't be happier. I put in alot of running miles over the past 5 months. Running is my focus this year, so I should be running more.

But I was running a SICK amount in order to train for the 50k.

Now, I can step back and incorporate swimming and biking into my training schedule.

I started TODAY with a recovery swim of about 700m. There are few things I enjoy as much as an easy swim after a race. Just LOVE.IT.

Tomorrow I'm doing one-leg drills on the bike and an hour of core work.

That leads me to Elephant Rock. Once again, I'm doing this bike tour, and I will be undertrained. Once again, it will probably hurt.

As long as it hurts less than previous years, I'm good. It's 62 miles. One of those distances where I think to myself "Oh just get through it. It's a couple of hours of nice easy climbs....except for that part where it's hard."


It's the easiest bike tour in the state....I think.

If I can't get through this, then I don't deserve to own my SWEET beast.

I guess this is my way of warning you that I'll be writing a "race" report, but this time, it might be quite enjoyable cuz there WILL BE PICTURES!

This year, I'm actually going to TAKE pictures along the route. The section as we ride up towards Pike Peak as the sun rises is just too beautiful for me to keep to myself. So, I will stop along the route to smell the to speak.

Besides, I have to do it.

The Sunrise Century is in July. and THAT, my friends, is a DOOZY in the most technical of terms.....climbing to 9000ft....with my limited amount of bike time, scares me.

So Elephant Rock is the "Get your butt in the saddle" ride. After which, I WILL get my butt in the saddle, riding up through Boulder to the Peak to Peak Highway, getting ready for Sunrise.

I'm BACK in the saddle people! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

How I got my ass kicked, Part 2

I did not get my course pr. But, I'm not in the least bit upset about it. We can either say it was my 3rd slowest half marathon or my 4th fastest. Either is ok with me.

I knew it was a long shot, but I figured that I'd put a positive spin on it and hope for the best.

Here is the quick synopsis.

It was a beautiful morning. After a week of snow and rain, this morning was perfect. Two days before the race, I'd stopped loading. This morning, I felt great. I'd slept well, etc.

Race start. I met some really great women who were also running solo (no fan club cheering at the finish).

I should probably explain this....Mike and the boys stopped going to my running races a long time ago. It's different than a tri where they can see me throughout the race. As far as I'm concerned, there's no reason for them to wake up early just to sit around for a couple of hours. But that doesn't mean that they don't take an interest (see previous day's post).

Anyhooo, we all chatted, shivering (it was in the 30's).

The race starts. I'm plodding along at my conservative pace. It takes me awhile to warm up, but I'm doing my thing.

Up to 6 miles, I do exactly what I'm supposed to do. I circle around, ready to make my move. (This is where I was supposed to turn it up).

I hit the gas.

The engine didn't do anything.

I tried turning the key again. I got nothing. At mile 7, I think to myself "Well, I guess NOT doing my long runs was a bad idea.'s how it's going to go: this is probably going to hurt but if you can just hold this new improved SLOWER pace for the remaining 5 miles, we'll call it a day. Sound good?"

Of course it sounds good, I mean, it's an out and back half marathon. What else am I going to do?

So, I'm da-dee-da'ing down the course.

I get to mile 10, and it hits me. Call it an epiphany if you like, but IT hit me like a truck!

I am a great swimmer....seriously....I'm THAT good.

I am a really good cyclist....seriously....I should get the most improved award.


And that's ok. Well, maybe it wouldn't be ok if I only ran. But I don't.

I'm a triathlete. A triatlete who is always 1st or 2nd out of the water. A triathlete who can hold her own on the bike. A triathlete who get's passed on the run.

And y'know what? I'm ok with that.

With that thought on my mind, I come up to mile 11. I start chuckling to myself.

2 miles left. I'm slogging along.

Then I see the "street"....the one that once I cross, there's only .5 miles left.

My mind says "Let's KICK IT!"

My body keeps plodding.

I see the camera man. I try really hard to NOT smile and NOT scare the children. Come on, just ONCE can I get a decent race picture? I try to pretend that I don't see him.....and almost run RIGHT into him.

It can't get any better than taking out the camera man.

I run through the finish with whatever I have left. I cross the finish smiling knowing that although I probably would have liked to, I didn't quit.

But that wasn't the best part of the day.

The best part was the BBQ! Mmmm-mmmm-good. I hung out. Watched the men's and women's marathoners finish, listened to the band and decided to head home.

When I got to the car, I looked at my medal. It's really the World's Ugliest Finisher's medal. But I held it up and knew that when I got home I'd write my finish time on it and place it in the carved wooden box that Mike and the boys got for me over 10 years ago.

That's the irony.

I write my finish times down because I rarely remember them. I don't remember swim times, transition times, run times, etc. But I can tell you what I had to overcome just to be standing at the start line.

Crossing the finish line just makes it that much sweeter.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

How I got my ass kicked.

All week, I've been looking forward to Saturday. Then, late last night, Saturday had the potential to become an even BETTER day....when (as much as I love watching Jman play baseball) the baseball tournament was canceled.

I was overjoyed at the thought of sleeping in, hanging out, doing nothing physical....not even thinking of being active.

I'm gonna sit right here in my reading chair and read my book and drink iced tea and do NOTHING.

Yesterday I went to packet pick up.

Saturday is the limbo day. The day of nothing.

Quite satisfied that I was going to be able to veg out, I fell into a deep sleep last night...almost dreamless, except for the one where I got my course pr.

As far as dreams go, I usually dream about not making the start or getting lost in transition, or various race dreams that seem to undo all the good that training has done.

So, I'll take a pr dream. BUT THAT was going to be the last bit of thinking about the race (that I was going to do) until Sunday at the butt crack of dawn when I have to get up.

Saturday morning, arrives.....ahhhhhh.....I awake around 10am; I make coffee, have a wonderful breakfast. No one else is up, so I begin my reading.

Around 11, the rest of the house wakes up. I continue reading as Jman, Googs, and Mr. Tea start making breakfast. I don't think there is a better aroma than the smell of fresh coffee and breakfast cooking.


My ears begin to focus in on the conversation.

I hear "strategy"....."water".....and I realize that the conversation had turned to ME.

That's when I look up to see three pairs of eyes staring at me.

Mr. Tea: So, what's your race day strategy. We really need to talk about this.


Jman: where are the water stations? How much gu are you bringing?

Googs: Do you know how you're running this race?

Me: just want the bbq at the end. I miss it every year.

Mr. Tea: You really need to have your strategy worked out. tomorrow is the race.

Me: yea, well....I haven't really decided if I want to carry my water bottle or not.

JMan: That's something you need to decided. You can't wait until the last minute. How far apart are the stations?

Me: Two miles. But I remember something weird about them last year, like they weren't where they were supposed to be...??

Jman: You need to carry your water bottle. You don't want to be in the situation where you need water and the station is mismarked. Or what if you need an extra gu? Every 3 miles means that you might run out of gas at mile 12. You don't want to run out of gas at mile 12.

Mr. Tea: Ok, that's decided. You're carrying water.

Googs: What's the route like? How are you going to run it. Didn't you go out too hard last year?

Me: yea, I did. It's pretty flat as far as denver goes. But it's 6.5 up and 6.5 down. Last year, I went out too hard with the incline. I should be more conservative this year and be patient. This way on the down, I can really kick it.

Googs: Yea. You definitely want to be conservative. This isn't a 5k.

Mr. Tea: Ok, what else? You're carrying water, gu every 3 miles, go out conservatively.

Me: And I'm getting bbq at the end.

Mr. Tea: And bbq at the end. Now don't you feel better about the race? Now you have a plan.

Me: Yea....

With that, I am now set to enjoy the rest of my day, knowing that everyone feels good about the race and the plan "we" have set.

Really what it comes down to is.....getting to the foodline as fast as possible.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Here we go

Part 1 is here.

I have a half marathon on Sunday. It's my first of 3, and my goal is to have a course PR.

My speed workouts have been excellent.

My distance runs,

I'm excited. I love running half marathons.

13.1 miles of going as hard as I can.

I wish I could say that I am ready to knock that PR out of the park.


I feel strong.

I feel fast.

But am I?

Block out the discomfort.

Keep moving forward.

Don't doubt myself.

Stick to my plan.

Focus on the person in front of me.

Pick them off one at a time.

Until I can't go any faster.

Then, hold that speed.

Running a half marathon is easy, right?

Go as fast as you can for 13.1 miles....

piece o' cake.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Product Review: Recover03

I haven't done a product review in several years. I decided to do one on the new Gatorade Recover 03 for a couple of reasons.

I have tried every product under the sun and have not found a recovery drink that does not upset my stomach. I've always thought it was funny that I can eat/drink anything on the run but as soon as I stop, I bloat up so much that I can almost float off into the sky.

In fact, I have checked content of those pre-mixed drinks, powders, every chocolate milk out there, slimfast, name it-I've tried it...and I have been unable to figure out what is causing this problem.

That means I am always in the market for something new.

We all know that the first 30 minutes after a workout are critical to replacing nutrients.

I've seen the commercials for the Gatorade 1-2-3 products. Heck, if it works for Peyton Manning it should work for me, right?

I went up to the store. All Gatorade products were on sale....I mean really on sale. So, I thought "What the heck? I'll try it".

I checked the content of the Gatorade 01. It's basically a GU in juice form. I didn't bother even buying it because I am very happy with my AccelGel. I don't have any issues with consistency.

As for Gatorade 02: Well, it's Gatorade. You either love it or hate.

Basically, I'm saying do what you will with Gatorade 01 & 02.

However, the Gatorade 03 Recover drink might be something for you to try if you have any of the problems that I've had.

Let me give you the nutritional content first:
Calories: 130 for the 16.9 oz bottle.
Fat: 0
Sodium: 250mg
Potassium: 95mg
Carbs: 14g
Sugars: 12g
Protein: 16 (whey protein)

My first thought was that for an endurance workout, the carbohydrates were a little low. But, if it works, I can have a banana with it.

The first flavor that I tried was Mixed Berry. Now, honestly, I'm not a *berry* person. So, the first swig was a little overwhelming. However, I drank the bottle down in a few minutes. I noticed that I didn't have that bloating feeling. (It normals strikes immediately).

I took the drink after a 7 mile tempo run. It wasn't an extreme distance by any stretch of the imagination, but it was a tough workout.

For me, the experiment was a success. After having the drink, I didn't feel drained or as though I lacked any energy. Once I got home, I followed the drink with a banana to make up for the lack of carbohydrates.

Overall, I was impressed. I am going to use Gatorade Recover 03 again. Even though the Mixed berry was just "ok", not having stomach issues makes it well worth it for me. Next I'll try the lemon-lime.

To balance out my positive review, my son played basketball and had the lemon lime as his post-workout drink. He wasn't all that crazy about it and is going to stick with his drink. Then again, he didn't have the problems his crazy mom has.

Take my review and do with it what you will.

I'm sold and will be buying Gatorade Recover 03 again.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The 5 year plan

It's hard to believe, but I'm in my 3rd year of my 5 year training cycle.

What 5 year plan? You ask.

In 2008, I put alot of thought into how I wanted future races to look. I took a hard look at my strengths and weaknesses.

At that time, I didn't know if I would do another Ironman race, but I knew that 70.3's were something that I enjoyed.

So, my 5 year plan was goal focused and not race focused. This would allow me to do some different things while also working toward my yearly goals.

In 2008, I worked on my swim muscular endurance, or going hard for a long distance.

In 2009, I worked on my bike endurance & climbing.

This year, I am focused on my running speed/endurance at the half marathon distance. That means, no tri's for me this year.

During the past three years, these goals have (obviously) not been worked on exclusively but having a primary goal for a year gave me the ability to focus more on my limiters, than I have in the past.

In 2011, as long as I don't change my mind, I am going to do Ironman Boulder. It's a 70.3 in August and give me the opportunity to race in better weather than I have in previous years. Quite honestly, I am tired of doing half-irons in terrible weather ranging from record cold water and air temps, getting pelted by hail, & fighting 35mph winds.

The 70.3 is hard enough, and I've done 3 of them in horrible conditions. (Yea, remember my HM race reports? Screaming at the sky. I'm sorry for the RD, but I just can't go back. There are too many choices...yea, I know it's in my backyard but that only gets you so much).

But IM Boulder? Did I mention that I can ride the route every weekend?

August is a very nice (albeit hot) month in Colorado. Hot I can handle. Boulder will be almost perfect timing when my training volumes begin to increase Spring snowstorms will be over and fall will be a few weeks away.

Also, I get to take part in the dip n dashes throughout the summer as prep for the race.

Let's review:
1.) Weather
2.) Location
3.) Date
4.) Training races

What's not to love?

Unless of course, I change my mind.

That will be year 4.

Year 5 of my plan (unless I change my mind) means...sigh....another Ironman. Sigh as in I think it's time not as in Everyone's doing it so I have to....

Year 5: 2012....One son in college, one almost done with high school.
That level of responsibility really changes things.

Unless you've been there, it's hard to explain the sacrifice Ironman training takes. Getting up at 3am to do a 4000m swim and 3 hour bike before baseball/basketball/football games, it almost put me over the edge last time. (Not to mention having to go to work). And that was just sacrifice on my side....Mike and the boy's (during Iron weekends) spent the entire weekends only really seeing me for dinner on Saturday & Sunday nights. On non-iron weekends (ie regular training), I was just tired all the time.

Again, it's a timing issue. My 5 year plan peaking with an Ironman race. It wasn't intended, but everything just kinda fell into place.

Those always seem to be the best kinds of plans.

My race of Choice is currently Redman; however Vineman is the close 2nd. A July race versus a September race.

Unless, I change my mind.

Monday, May 3, 2010

The butt of jokes

For years, I was the one who was always the butt of the jokes in the family.

I was the one who brought my own meals to barbeques and holidays, turned down cakes and pies and ice cream and chips and candy and cookies at family events. I come from one of thoe traditional Irish catholic there were ALOT of family events....mostly because there were ALOT of family members. Just in June, we have over 8 birthdays. Just in JUNE. Of course, everyone has to have their own party.

Being the OLDEST of all the first cousins didn't really help matters.

I was the first to leave parties to get up for those silly races.

I brought my own food.

I didn't get drunk with them.

I was the perfect target. The ultimate Goody Two Shoes.

But I took it all in stride. It was all in good fun.

One year, I mentioned that for my birthday I'd like for everyone to do a 5k with me.

You could hear a pin drop.

Before my grandparents died, the Family was on a constant mission to fatten me up.

Over the years, the Family has grown and grown and grown. My 30 first cousins have now an average of 5 kids each. (Them Greeks got nothin' on us). So, the Family has split up into smaller more manageable groupings for birthdays and holidays.

About a week ago, we had a psuedo Family reunion. It was impromptu but every was able to make it. Now, I hadn't seen many of my first cousins for quite a few years. (Barring funerals....but I don't count that because everyone looks like crap at funerals).

Here at the reunion....everyone was having a good time, laughing, drinking, eating, dancing, all the normal stuff.

Then, I mistakenly took one of my first cousins (one of the youngest ones) for her MOTHER. My Aunt.

That's when I started looking around. I realized that everyone looked so old. SO much older than they are.

My *thing* has always been that I don't mind looking my age. I'm 42 and a half. :) I just didn't want to look OLDER than I am.

But looking at everyone that day, I realized how much YOUNGER than everyone I looked.

Younger than the youngest. The cousins close to my age? They looked at least 20 years older.

I don't know if I actually look younger than my age or if they look so much older than their's.

I just know that sometimes being the butt of jokes is a good thing.

If you're reading this, and you know someone like me: *THAT* person...the one always getting up early on Sundays to train for some silly race or the one always watching what they eat or the one people always guess to be younger than they are.....

that can be you too.

Just ask if you can go watch the race.

Ask them what they are training for.

Ask them what they eat.

Then, make the decision to change one thing for that month. Get up in the morning and walk for 20 minutes. Don't run, don't try to go fast....just walk.

But do it every single day.

Commit to it.

Commit for yourself, your family, your friends.

Before you know, you'll be the butt of all the jokes in your family.