Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Things I Know for Sure about my Life

There are a few things in life that I know to be fact:

1.) The St. Louis Cardinals will be playing in the world series. The first game is tonight and I will be cheering them on. They will be taking that stupid rally squirrel with them. Most of you will have no idea what I am talking about when I mention their rally squirrel, consider yourselves lucky, although he is kind of cute.

2.) Fall is here and my favorite holidays are approaching. I've been busy making treat bags and planning on how I will scare unsuspecting trick or treaters.

3.) Fall is also my favorite time to go mountain biking, which is perfect because it is also my off season. I love riding in the crisp air and seeing the gorgeous fall color change of the Aspens.

I know for a fact that my daughter is beautiful and my puppy is adorable.

4.) I know that while I have enjoyed racing triathlons, I am ready to do some running races again, so I have signed up for an out of town half marathon and have even booked the flight.

Now, those of you who have been following me for awhile know that I do not have a good track record for out of town races. It seems as though once I finally manage to drag the ole credit card out and schedule a flight, something happens.

Examples: Two years ago, I booked a flight to San Antonio for the Rock and Rock Marathon. The very next day, I went and had a pulmonary embolism and couldn't run the race the following month.

Last year, I was a month out from the Chicago Marathon, so I figured I better book a flight, so I did. The next weekend, I ran my last 20 miler and hurt my ass muscle and my SI joint came out. Then it all went downhill from there. I won't bore you with the details, but I couldn't run that out of town marathon either.

So now, it is the day after I have booked my flight and I am dreaming up all kinds of horrible things that could happen in the next week. I am even thinking of purchasing some bubble wrap and wearing a helmet.

Surely, SURELY karma won't come back to bite me again. RIGHT? Please tell me it won't......

I also know for sure that I am behind in reading posts (as usual), so I'll see you soon

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A Day in the Life.....

Beth over at the Shut up and Run blog is having a contest where you can be entered to win a free shirt or free visor and to be entered to win, you have to blog about a day in your life. Now, let's face it, I'll do just about anything (I said almost anything people) for free stuff, so I'm in.

Before I begin, I would just like to apologize for my boring life.

My day begins anywhere between the hours of 5:00 to 6:30 in the morning, just depending on how many glasses of wine I have had the night before. I head downstairs and begin the task of showering and getting ready. I work as a Senior Accountant at a corporate headquarters for a company here in Denver, so I must look presentable on a daily basis.

Let me tell you, it's not easy to look presentable, I mean, look at this hair:

It usually takes me about an hour, but somehow I manage to pull myself together and head into the office around 7:30 to 8:00

Even if I'm not quite awake when I get there, I am usually shocked awake by the view outside my office. It's ok to be a little jealous; there's not many of you out there who get to look at a big ass blue and yellow sign outside the office window all day (what mountains?). That sign is 92 feet tall and I am sure you can probably see it from outer space. Thank goodness we are moving to a new building in the next couple of weeks.

Once at work, I work for the next 8 hours, or at least pretend to look like I know what's going on. Today, I am working on calculating revenue for our centers and booking the reserve on one of our biggest exposures that we have: our AR.

From 9:00-10:00, we have a meeting to go over this information. You awake out there? Me either.

I do a lot more then just work for 8 hours. I am in here for a good portion of the day.

because I try and drink about 3-4 of these every single day. Don't you wish you knew for sure what was in the bottle?

Today's lunch will be a bowl of Miso soup with tofu and some wheat crackers and I will get out the fart machine to play tricks on some poor unsuspecting person walking by my cube. This is a premium fart machine as it has up to 8 different fart sounds and a remote control.

After lunch, I book our bad debt expense and then start calculating our MSA payments. I yell and curse a little in frustration and then before I know it, it is time to go home.

Tonight I had a Brick on my schedule, so I did 45 minutes on the trainer and then a 20 minute run. All at easy pace.

Next up will be the dinner and wine and then off to bed in order to start the madness all over again tomorrow.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Molly's Virtual Fall 5K Race Recap

First and foremost, Happy Birthday to my sweet Mother!

This weekend I raced for not one, but two great fundraisers. Molly's Virtual 5K to benefit the Children's Tumor Foundation and The Band on the Run 2 Miler, which benefited the Smokey Hill High School Band.

I ran both because I wanted to support two of my friends from the blog world. Molly is hosting the virtual 5K and is running the New York City Marathon in five weeks (OMG Molly!) and my good friend Jill's son is a member of the H.S. Band.

OK, I'll make these race reports short. I know how you people hate for me to drone on and on.

Saturday was the run for the band and I awoke to 38 degree temps and snow. WHOOT! To me, this is perfect racing temps. I met Jill at the high school and we literally ran over to the start, so I could register and be ready for the 9:00 start time. She wasn't racing because she was running the Denver R&R half marathon the following day, which, I might add, she totally kicked booty in with a 1:52 time!

When the "gun" went off, I was gone. I was a very intrigued by this race because I haven't done any type of real speed work since I came back from my knee surgery in May, so I had no clue what I could do pace wise in a pure running event. Questions about what pace I should run flowed heavily through my mind; being injured can be a total confidence sucker and my ego has taken a total downward spiral lately. However, since the race was only 2 miles, I was like "meh, let's just go for it". The first mile split was at a 7:52 pace and the second was at a 7:37 pace, with an overall time of 15:29 and a 7:44 pace. Good enough for 1st place in my age group and the best thing is that it succeeded in making a HUGE boost in my running confidence. Might I add that this race was VERY small, hence the age group placing.

At home, after the race, all smiles.

Sunday, with a renewed sense of confidence in my running abilities, I ran Molly's Virtual 5K. You know, sometimes, all it takes is just a little thread of hope and everything seems to just falls into place. At the end of my 2 mile race yesterday, I felt amazing, like I could keep on running, so I mirrored the 5k after my race the previous day.

PIC: starting off on my 5K in my prize from the "Band on the Run" 1st in AG Prize! A reminder that "Yes, I can do it!"

PIC: 1st in AG prize from the front.

Like I said, I mirrored my 5K like the 2 mile race the day before. The first mile, I started out at a bit of a downhill and had to actually hold the pace back a little to a 7:50 pace. It was once again a sunny, yet crisp, cool 38 degrees and my absolute favorite running temperature. I am a Colorado girl at heart!!

The second mile was at a slight uphill pace, but I KNEW I could still negative split from the first mile, so I held fast at a 7:39 pace. This one was a little tough due to the uphill, so I had to pull out all the stops and use LMFAO's "Sexy and I Know It". Yeah, worked.

I wanted to negative split that last mile down from the 7:39 pace, so that last mile was tough for me. I was on the verge of puking my Wheaties Fuel and stopping, so I thought about all of my friends who were racing the Denver Half Marathon and the Chicago Marathon at that very moment and I knew that they were probably struggling, so they were my inspiration to keep moving forward. I also thought about my triathlon coach and the fact that she kicked some total ass at the Kona Ironman National Championships the day before with a 10:22:xx overall time and a 10 minute PR. Total badass.

I thought of how great these women were and what I wanted to accomplish next year and all of my goals for the 2012 year exploded in clarity in my head and I pulled out the last mile in a 7:10 pace.

Ummm, goals were set aside when I realized that I was in a world of hurt and ran the last .2 at a 7.43 pace.

AND DONE. Ok, it looks like I was a little overzealous on the course (probably while I was dreaming about running a 3:30 marathon) and ran 3.20 miles instead of a typical 5K of 3.1. OOPS. 3.20 in 24.20 is a 7:36 pace, so a typical 3.1 5K course would have taken me a time of :


Not a 5K PR, but shit, I will take it!!!! I haven't seen those numbers IN A LONG TIME. Whoot, two races in two days with paces in the 7 minute mile range. Ok, time to run slow again for the next few weeks.

Congratulations to all of you who ran the Denver half or Chicago Marathon and were my heroes yesterday. You know you who are! You guys are my total inspiration to dig deep inside of me next year and be the athlete that I know I can be.

And to Molly who is dedicating her NYC Marathon to help children with cancer; kudos to you, thank you for hosting this 5K race!

Have a great week my friends!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Crescent Moon Sprint Triathlon Race Report

A few weeks ago, I raced my second sprint triathlon. Everyone has had one of those races that they would just like to erase from their minds, well, this was mine. It was even worse then my marathon last year where I puked all over the side of the road at mile 2. For every one thing that went right in my first triathlon, two things went wrong at this one.

Race Morning
After only three hours of sleep, I stumbled out of bed and got dressed. My brain was just a foggy mess from lack of sleep and I even forgot to put on my usual race mascara. Gasp. I scarfed down a banana and half a peanut butter bagel and then I was off to the race site.

Once there, I quickly hit up registration, set up my bike in transition, and went to check out the swim course. The temperature that day was supposed to be 85 degrees, but the morning was cool and foggy and steam rose up from the lake. I shivered and stared at the lake. The buoys were spread out and the swim looked long. I have only swam in open water twice before, so I told myself that I had swam this distance many times in the pool, but in my mind, it looked like it was a 20 mile swim and my confidence tanked right then and there and of course, my stomach dropped.

The Swim
I lined up in the back, which is quickly becoming my favorite starting place for the swim, and tried not to puke in the sand or crap my wetsuit. When the gun sounded, I bounded into the water and EOWWEE almost ran back out. The water temps were in the 60's and it was cold. I gingerly pushed forward and started swimming. Once I put my head under, the cold water shocked my system and my head flew back out. I started gasping for breath, but couldn't get any air. Someone whacked my head from behind and I started panicking. This is the sort of freak out that figured I would do in my first tri, but I never did, I was relaxed the whole swim, so here it was, the great freak out in my second triathlon. You would have thought I was being attacked by man-eating fish out there, the way I was thrashing around.

By this time, people were swimming over me, so I had to get out of the way. I looked to the shore and told myself to just end it right now. GET OUT. I thought about it, but something in me just told me to "KEEP MOVING", so I did. With my head out of the water. I wasn't going to put my head back in that cold ass lake. I swam free stroke until my right arm came out of the water and someone whacked me from behind again. DAMMIT people. I felt something click in my chest and my chest and back started to hurt. Well crap. The first thing I thought of was that I had another pulmonary embolism. OMG, OMG! It hurt to swim freestyle, so I resorted to the breast stroke. Yep, breast stroked most of my second triathlon.

To make a long story short, I finally made it out of the water and started making my way up to transition. I sat down on one of the steps and gasped for breath and told myself to just turn in my chip and go home and get some sleep. But that stupid, little perky irritating other voice told me to get the hell up. I can make up the time on the bike and run.

Swim time plus run (OK, I walked it) up to transition. 24 minutes. Felt like the LONGEST SWIM EVER.

Not much going on in there. And I do mean not much, I think I was the only person in there since I took so long to swim. Time: 1:33

The Bike
The bike course was a mix of hills and flat, but I had ridden the course the previous weekend at a 19.3 MPH pace and I was confident that I could make up some time from that lousy swim.


Once on my bike, I noticed that my chest was still hurting and I couldn't get down into the aero bike position. WTH was going on!* So much for purchasing the aero bars. At least I have a picture of me with them...sorta in aero.

*The following Monday, I went to the doctor and discovered that I had strained my intercostal muscle. YAY ME! I am probably the only person on the face of this earth who has strained a rib muscle while swimming.

I settled into a nice ride until the first hill came up and I pushed both gears for my chain rings at the same time and started up the hill. I pedaled and nothing happened, I spun and spun and spun, but nothing happened. I finally got off my bike and looked. I had dropped my chain. And it was stuck behind the chain ring and the chain stay and I couldn't for the life of me, get it released. I laughed. Then I cried. I glad I wasn't wearing my race mascara.

Finally, one of the dudes on the course ran over and yanked the chain out, spun my tires, and declared me good to go. I looked at him as he ran back to the course and thought "I'm not sure I want to go." I dried my tears and wiped the snot off my nose and got back out there and finished that thing.

Bike Time: My bike computer said 18.1 MPH, but my official time (because on race day, it doesn't matter what your computer says because it doesn't stop when you have chain issues) was 16.6 MPH, which means I dorked around with my chain for about 3 minutes.

I wish you had skillz like me.

Went in, couldn't find my towel, scowled at all of the elites who were done and standing around, finally found my towel and left. Yep, I left through the bike entrance and almost got myself plowed by a rider. It might actually have been good to put me out of my misery at that point.

Time: 1:19

The Run
By this time, I was like "Meh, who cares what my time is, let's just get this thing done." The first half mile was uphill. I don't know why I look like such a funktard in this next running picture. I guess that is just what I look like while I am running uphill with a bad rib muscle.

Note to self, fix running gait while running uphill

Like I said, the first 1/2 mile was uphill and after that it was a mix of gently rolling hills. Once I was on the run course, my legs just seemed to take over and knew what to do. I am a runner at heart. I suck at swimming, tolerate biking, but I absolutely love to run. This was the only part of the tri where I felt relaxed and comfortable. Probably because I didn't give a shit anymore.

Run Pace: 8:34

AND DONE. Total time was 1:35, which is actually 3 minutes faster then my first triathlon.

I was so very happy to see my friend Jill (who took this picture), my husband (not sure why his hat is like that), and my sweet puppy Piper!

Thanks for coming out and cheering me on Jill! I sure appreciated the support!