Thursday, October 20, 2011

The end of the 2011 season: Deca report

The 2011 season was a good season for me, a return to the world of UltraTriathon. I learned a lot, and more importantly I am energized and charged up for the next part of the journey.

At the end of September we headed to Sicily for the DecaIronman, 10 races in 10 days, and when we arrived I was immediately reminded why I love this sport. It was like a huge sweaty family reunion, and it was awesome being around people who don’t think the things I try to do are abnormal, or insane… because they are the same way. These are “my people” and from the first night’s 25 person wine and food fest at a local restaurant to the smaller dinners towards the end of the trip I had a great time getting to know them. When we left we did not say goodbye, instead it was until we meet again… and we will see most of them again at races in the future.

The swim for the race was at a pool in Enna, about 4 miles from the hotel so each morning we met up in the lobby to shuttle to the pool. It was a nice way to touch base and see how everyone’s race was going each day. The pool was a 25m pool, with high walls (about 2 feet above the surface of the water). I was fortunate to have Tony (from Canada) as my lane-mate since he was just a tad faster than me but stopped frequently, so we would always finish within a lap of each other. The pool was cool, so I was comfortable swimming in tri-shorts, a sports bra (thanks SturdyGirl), and a sleeveless wetsuit. The swim was a nice way to stretch out, but 1:20-1:25 is a lot of time to spend in my head each morning. After the first day Drew started to do a poolside dance every 1000m which really helped break it up for me, and gave me a feel for where I was (I tried lap counting, but 76 laps is a lot to get right). My swims got a bit faster each day… though my arms felt heavier. I really struggled with the turns, since I couldn’t grab onto the wall (TRAINING NOTE 1: Make flip turns a natural part of swimming). The first few days I just stripped the wetsuit, threw on a jersey and headed for the bike after I got out of the water, but after the weather got cooler and my bum got sorer I took the time to change into dry shorts.

After the swim was a nice 4 mile trip to the Pergusa Autodrome. The road had a couple of long climbs that gave me a chance to spin, spin, spin and also to eat a Gu and drink some Clip2. The first day the bike course was on the roads around the track which had a few small hills and pretty sweet surface. This was my favorite day on the bike since the hills gave me a chance to stand up and coast down. After the first day we went in and rode on the race course, which was a 5K loop with a few fun chicanes, some rough surfaces, and a nagging headwind on the backstretch. The biggest problem on the bike was boredom… which allowed time to focus on the pain in my bum, my aching feet, and the odometer. I would settle into my “I can ride this pace forever” pace, and it often seemed to go on forever. Occasionally I would catch up to, or be caught by, another competitor and we would spend a lap or two chatting which was nice. We also passed the crew area every lap where Drew would hand me some food or drink or just a few words… but this was on the tailwind stretch and all too quick. (TRAINING NOTE 2: Need to do some shorter, faster bike rides with intervals and work on getting back some bike speed… TRAINING NOTE 3: Aerobars. Learn to love them. Seat adjustment? Core work? Do what it takes so I can ride them all the time).

The first few days the run course was also around the track, a 2K out and back and then 8 laps. It is amazing how spread out 21 people and their crews can get, it was often a lonely dark place to be. I had Drew run laps 4,6,8 with me which gave me something to look forward to. On Day 4 Giorgio changed the run to be 2 out and backs which helped a lot as it concentrated the runners, let us go by the crew pit twice as often, and helped with the common ankle problem from running a cambered course. I was pleased at how much I “ran” although much of the time my running speed was the same as Drew’s fast’ish walk. TRAINING NOTE 4: Work on run “speed”. 10K’s, half marathons. Build the ability to create a cushion. Love the run.

Day 1: Started really nervous, but had fun. Tried to stay quite relaxed. 15:30

Day 2: First day on the real bike course, no fun. Bum hurt, feet fell asleep. 16:11

Day 3: Felt really happy on the bike, though the winds picked up. Was just a slow day. Did not eat as good as I aught. 16:41

Day 4: Tried to eat better. Started raining with 3 to go on the bike, then hail, then furious downpour. Walked the 2Kn with flipflops on waiting for the rain to stop then got on the run. 17:48

Day 5: Swim was fine, bike was fine except the rain the last couple of hours. Started the run in the rain. The weather made it hard to eat, and I wasn’t too hungry so I did not do a good job of it. Did the first half of the run and then I started to shiver. Badly. Became incoherent and dry heaving. Jan (Wayne’s wife) and Mario (race volunteer) came upon me and walked/carried me back to the crew area where they wrapped me in towels and forced in some electrolytes. I couldn’t stop shaking, and was freezing, though they say my skin was burning up. Sat in a car with the heater at full blast and eventually (maybe an hour all told) got under control. Drew gave me a new set of shoes and socks and when I could control my hands enough I changed, got out of the car, and said I was ready to walk. Giorgio (the RD) made the call that I had to stop. I argued a bit, promised Drew would walk with me and I’d keep a blanket around me, but he was firm and I do understand his decision. I was officially DNF. (TRAINING NOTE 5: Learn to listen better to my body. If I was able to see the signs earlier and correct for them, even if I sat down and rested/ate for awhile, I would have had a slow finish but a finish. I did not get the cues before I was in full implosion).

Day 6: Slept in. Ate a ton. Slept some more. Went out and walked the laps I missed the night before. Felt a lot like I was recovering from a bad illness… just weak and tired.

Day 7/8: Went sightseeing with Drew, and Mary and Steve (a great couple from Canada… he DNFd with ankle issues early on). Had a great time playing tourist.

Day 9: Did the swim, and 30miles on the bike until the weather got unfriendly. Decided I did not need to be out there, so took a shower, cheered folks on, and went out for a great meal with the other DNFers.

Day 10: Cheered on folks at the pool, then on the course. The weather was MISERABLE the whole day, and I was kinda grateful to be on the fun side if things.

It was really a great experience and I learned a ton from my fellow competitors. Each person taught me something, from the other DNFers and their whys and wherefores and what to do now plans, to Kim who averaged under 12 hours to win the race, to the middle of the packers and the pains and tough patches they overcame, to Vincenzo who averaged 20 hours and took a nap each afternoon.

So… there ya go. Once again I did not meet my goal, but I would rather stretch for something just out of my reach than play it safe. With Kari and Steve’s input I put together a great plan for the next two years. Until July I will do shorter and faster workouts, work on bike and run speed. No long slogs. August on I will build back in my endurance and do the Quintuple in Mexico in November. I will state my goal here and now… average UNDER 15 hours for each day of the race. Then in 2013 I plan to challenge for the IUTA World Cup which will entail doing well at a few doubles (including the World Championship), perhaps a triple, and definitely the DecaIroman in the fall.

I’ll end this rather long summary (it was a long race) with some big thank you’s:
Drew, who always believes in me and supports me in any plan I come up with,
Hilary, SturdyGirl Sports, who really does support me (the best bra’s in the world for endowed gals),
Debi, who coached me through this comeback to running and swimming without injury,
Gu, who made Rocktane… ,
The competitors, it is awesome to have found “my people” and be taken in as one of the family,
And, to all of you who believe in me… thank you for reading!

And, the journey continues…

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The end

I just ran out of heart today. Did the swim, but it felt endless. About 20 miles into the bike I called it. No real reason, just could come up with no real reason to be out there.

Next season will be a shorter, work on speed kinda season with only one audacious event (the sup race around key west) and then I plan to come back to the deca in 2013 and make this happen. I have learned alot, and I just love the challenge and the people, but I need some time to prepare for it mentally and physically.

Time for the off season and then back to this journey...

Thank you for your support! I am truly a lucky girl to have my hubby behind me, and all the other blessings in my life that allow me to attempt audacious things!


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Just like mom

Meat, fruit, and mash potatoes all chopped up into little bits and in plastic cups, like mom when you were a kid.

More dryer

The dryer

Leslie about to ride - day 4

From the pool

The transition outside the pool

Outside Enna, Italy


I had a little issue today at 20kon the run course. Got very cold, dizzy, nauseous and generally made a fool of myself as I was carried back, then warmed up.

Giorgio would not let me continue...

So, tomorrow we'll help crew the race and then i'll join back in for days 7-10

Then hail in day 4

Some rain...

The transition area

Leslie on another lap

Enna, italy

Friday, September 30, 2011

And they're off-day 1

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

And they're off-day 1

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Cool old ferarri


Day before the race...

After a long day of flying we arrived in Catania where our friend, and race director, Giorgio picked us up. Got to the hotel which is right next to the race track (we are doing the bike and run on a formula one course in Pergusa). Did not even get to check in before it was time to take pictures. Sarka and I are the only two women racing so they shot pics of us, and then all of the competitors. They should be in the local paper today (need to find one and see). checked in, put Artimous together, and headed out to dinner. Some 20+ people including racers and crews swamped a local eatery where there was wine, tons of food, and great chatter. Finally got to sleep and slept deeply.

This morning was more photos and the prerace meeting. Then I did a lap of the course and a short jog. Day 1 there's a Ferrari club thing at the car track so we'll be biking on the road around it until they are done. There are a few slight hills, but generally it's smooth and fast. I guess there is also some uphill between the swim and the course (around 7k) which will serve as a bike warmup each day.

Resting now then off to the pool for a thing with the mayor and an opportunity to see the how the hills look.

Feeling pretty good. Hoping to stay easy tomorrow and come in around 15hours. Giorgio promises pizza around 9pm each day on the course which will be a great chance to walk a lap and eat well. The racers are all really nice, and the race has the feel of a family reunion with a bit of sweat.

Wish me luck. Drew will be posting pics and tweets from here on out...

Friday, September 23, 2011

Hiding in the weeds.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Getting ready for Sicily!!!

Just a month from now I will be doing the DecaIronman in Sicily: http://www.decaironman.com/
  • Last few weeks of hard training.
  • Crewing for Mary Arnold as she did her first Leadville Trail 100 race and watching her smile through a 29:45 was awesome mental schooling.
  • Watching my lil sister finish her first Ironman in Canada last weekend was another inspirational boost! (Go Christie!)
  • Hanging with Drew after he DNF'd at the same race in Canada due to some schlup putting tacks on the bike course and getting two flats... sad and not cool (no Kona qualifying this year). BUT, he's coming to Italy now to be my support crew... will be so awesome to have him there!
I think I'm ready... but how can one really know until day 9? (If I make it to Day 9, I will crawl all of day 10 if needed!)


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Friday, May 27, 2011

RR: Ohio Triple T

This past weekend was the Ohio TTT race... and I have to say, it was wicked hard, wicked fun, and I definitely want to do it again next year!!!

We arrived in Portsmouth Ohio at 1pm Friday and headed out to Shawnee State park. Unpacked our bikes, and the nice park ranger agreed to store our boxes in his office for the weekend. (2 bikes, 2 boxes, 2 people, 1 rental car, and luggage... too much to tote around!). Walked our bikes down to transition and picked up our singlets and numbers for the weekend. The race gives a singlet the participants are required to wear... fortunately it's pretty nice. (After a serious cleaning I might even wear it later).

The first race was a super sprint, 250m swim, 5 mile bike (was actually shorter than that), 1 mile run at 5pm Friday night. The water was COLD so most folks wore a wetsuit, and those that didn't regretted it. Quick race... cold swim, up a hill and back down on the bike, and the same on the run. I didn't completely embarrass myself, being that I am a turtle in the midst of a pack of jackrabbits, and I'm sure the 15 folks behind me after this one were quaking in fear! Drew had a solid race, finishing 44th overall.

Saturday morning dawned with an Olympic race, and we got a sense of what we were really in for. 1500m 2 lap swim, starting off in bib number every 3 seconds. Then off for a HILLY 25 mile bike. Lots of short steep climbs, but a really gorgeous course. Humid and green, almost jungle like through the forest roads. Then a 6.5 mile run, on a gravel road. Basically uphill for 2.5 miles, then down for 0.7, return. Very challenging course, but with tons of butterfly's cruising around and nice scenery.. I swam okay, found the bike to be fun, and then suffered the run. Ran all the downs, walk/jogged the ups. Was ahead of a couple more people, but I saw the fear in the eyes of others! Drew again had a good race, finishing 30th overall.

We had 3 hours downtime to grab food, and tried to eat and drink as much as possible. Then, time for race 3. This was also an Olympic race but the format was switched. We started on the bike 2by 2 according to bib number 10 seconds or so apart. As bib 381 this took quite awhile, but finally it was time to go. The road was super smooth and nice, or it would have been if it wasn't for all those hills. And the heat and humidity! Brought in the bike quite slowly, and now time to try to shimmy into a wetsuit and hit the water for 1500m. This was actually easier than expected (my wetsuit is nicely roomy) and the water felt great. Cool and refreshing. I got into a nice groove and had clear water, til the last buoy when I got kicked in the ribs by a guy who decided to breaststroke. Ooof... Shake it off, and head in to transition for the final 6.5 mile run (same course as the morning). the coolness of the swim really helped and I felt reasonably good on the run. By race 3 I was recognizing people, and I knew for sure some folks that were ahead of me in race 2 were now behind... All in all a good race though I was not pleased with the bike. Drew was pretty tired at the end of his race, and starting to be concerned about the last day... but still was in the thick of things.

Time to eat again, and take off the smelly singlet and prep for the final day. Sunday morning was a half ironman. Same swim course, but kicked out a little for the 1.2miles. Water was still chilly, but after 3 races I was used to it. Same 3 seconds apart start but the bunnies were not so eager to get going. The swim went okay, out of the water in 44minutes. Then to transition which was pretty amusing. Lots of people taking their time getting to the bike... which was a tough one! 2 laps, 4 "major" hills per lap. Hot and sweaty. I had lots of company on this, and there were folks behind. I "took it easy"... nope. I rode as well as I could on the course and the conditions and came in at a whopping 4:24... Yeah, that's well over an hour slower than an "average" half IM bike split for me. Laughed it off, put on my running shoes and started in on the run... 2 laps of the same run course so I knew I was in for a time. Keeping cool was a big challenge, and the aid stations kept running out of supplies. Got a water bottle after the first lap and filled it with ice and carried it in the belly of my singlet. Was quite the fashion statement! I proudly finished 2nd to last, with a 9 (yes.. .thats right NINE) hour half IM. Many folks DNF'd... so I am sure that I moved up past some bunnies... Drew shut it down on the 2nd bike lap and eased in with a 7:20ish racetime...

All in all a terrific event. Challenging, fun, sweaty, dirty, hilly, and with butterflies. I LOVED it and will have it on my calendar for next year. Anyone want to join me?

Ride long, but do some running and swimming too!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tampa Double IM

First off, I want to thank you guys for your words of encouragement before, during and after the race... and then I want to shout from the rooftops "I am a TRIATHLETE AGAIN!!!" What an amazing weekend... I found a new place deep in the pain cave that I can go, and make stuff happen from.

This was again another race that I could not have done without support, and Linae, her hubby Joe, and my hubby Drew were absolutely great! We also had 2 surprise crew folks, Molly, who came out for the run and made it possible for me to not run a single lap alone, and Rebecca, the angle/demon/drill sergeant who pulled me through the last 2 hours. These guys were just phenomenal... When I say I cannot do it without them, I really mean cannot do it without them. I may put in the miles, but they make it happen and are with me ever stroke, pedal, and step of the way.

7800m, 50m pool. I was worried because there were 5 people sharing a lane, but it was really quite nice. I wore my new Xterra wetsuit, sleeveless, with a little v-cut modification in the neck and it was pretty sweet. There were 2 faster people, myself and Trixie at about the same pace, and one slower guy so I had some nice opportunities to draft and also to distract myself from the monotony. Linae would show me a sign every 1000m so I had a general idea of how far I was. I miscounted the end, thought I had 300 to go and had just gotten onto Trixie's feet when I felt a bottle whack me on the back... guess I was finished! Left Trixie and the guy swimming and exited the water.

Run to the bathroom, quick shower, cram the girls into my new and marvelous Sturdy Girl sports bra, and out to the car. A 30 minute timer started and we drove down to the start of the bike. Had lots of time to sunscreen, eat, stretch, and chat before getting on the bike.

Started with a 2 mile out and back... headed out and Artemous was feeling ready to go. Passed a non-racer on the trail, smiling and ready to jam. Got to the turnaround, started my U and WHAM. Said non-racer turned right from my outside as I was slowing to U-turn and down I went. "I've never seen anyone not turn right here in 20 years" he said as I laid there taking account of my pains. I was pretty lucky, my left hand and hip were bruised and my chain ring sliced my right ankle but all in all nothing that would force a stop. Artemous has some scuffage, and his brakes needed some adjustment, but we were soon up and back to it. At the next turn-around I asked Drew and Linae to find me some bike gloves to cushion my hand and got back to business.

The main course was a nice 8 mile loop, no big turns, rather flat, but QUITE windy. The winds made up for the flatness of the course, adding that nice extra bit of challenge, but also kept us cool. I had an okay bike, nothing special, but about where I expected to be (somewhere around 15mph). I managed to move up to 4th from last (or 13th overall) from last (where I was after the fall). Artemous just got his aerobars a few weeks ago, and I definitely need to spend more time riding there... the girly bits weren't loving the position but I just did what I could and didn't stress. For about 5 laps in the midnight timeframe I rode with Trixie, Giselle (a team competitor from Sweden) and one of the volunteers so I had a good chance to chat it out and not get tired. Around 2 in the morning I was finally done and I was glad to put on my running shoes and get going.

The "RUN":
Linae and I intentionally walked the first lap easing into things. And, the immediate thing we noticed was that everyone was walking. The top place folks were jogging along, but the main body of us were walking. After the run lap we tried to set a 4min run/2min walk as much as possible. This course was also flat, half of it on a nice tree lined path. After daybreak her friend Molly showed up and offered to run some. And so the first marathon passed by, slowly but steadily. The day got hot, my feet hurt, I was tired and well off of my planned pace, but I knew nothing would keep me from this finish. Honestly a lot of this time is a blur, I remember drinking some stuff, eating some stuff, lots of chatting... Trixie dropped out at the marathon mark. After that we had a few bad spots... I got really dizzy a few times and came close to passing out but we came up with a cold towel wrapped around my neck and that helped. I got nauseous a few time, but we worked through that too. The balls of my feet became bruised, and I had to walk almost entirely on my heels which stressed out my left knee (banged up in that fall many hours before). I was moving really slowly... but I was moving.

The feet got to be too much for me, and I sat down and we tried to put them in a bucket of ice water. YIKES! Tears, sobs, new socks, new shoes and now we don't have time to waste so keep moving. 5 laps to go and this gal Rebecca asked if she could run with me. She had run a 100 miler the weekend past and had blister issues and I welcomed the company (and Linae welcomed the chance to sit down for awhile!). She urged me to increase my pace by swinging my arms (remember, this is a heel-stride duck walk), and we chatted the lap away. 40 minutes for the lap, and we found that we had 2:30 left in the race, 4 laps to go, and even in my befuddled state I could calculate that we were in trouble.

She urged me to run 10 steps, walk 100. So I tried and it HURT. Fire in the balls of my feet. But, the second time we did it I decided to just keep running. So... we did. She drill-sergeanted, cajoled, begged, demanded, and basically talked me through every moment of the next 3 laps. When the blisters popped on the balls of both of my feet and I screamed, she just talked louder. There was no more walking to do. We were going to do this. And we did. We pulled down a 28 min lap, a 25 min lap, and a 26 min lap. You could hear us coming a mile away as I moaned every footfall when the balls of my feet hit, and she kept talking. She told Drew to take me through the last lap, and if it was over 30 she would chase him down. And he did.

I crossed the line WELL under the cutoff, and just like the movies the skies opened up and the rain started to fall as what was left of the crowd went wild and I collapsed into a crying puddle in Kirby's arms, then Linae's, and Drew's, and Wayne's, and well... anyone who would help hold me up.

It is a LONG way down the concourse at DIA. I know because my feet hurt and bad. And, I am grateful every step because it reminds me that I went deeper than I have gone before and with the help of my crew, the race volunteers, Kirby, and my fellow competitors I have refound my inner traithlete. And she is strong! And, this season is going to be simply amazing!!! This year we will have the first American staged-Deca Ironman finisher and I look forward to the journey to get to there.

Thank you for reading, and for your support!!!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Pemberton 50K

Weekend before last was the Pemberton Trail 50K, down in Fountain Hills, AZ. I have done this race twice before, back in the days I was doing triathlon (in 8 and 7 hours) so I knew what I was getting into, but this year it was done as a night race staring at 5pm. I have to say that logistically that is SWEET! Flew to Phoenix on a 10am flight with a backpack and a pair of running shoes. Ate lunch, checked into a hotel and changed clothes then went to the race. Crashed for a few hours after the race, then on a plan and back to Denver at 1pm Sunday with plenty of daylight left...

It was lovely warm at the start of the race, but crazy sunny as we started directly into the sunset. I had a strategy of running 5 min, walking 2 and just running my own race. This held pretty well up the long climb to the first aid station (5miles). The sun went down through the technical section after the aid station and I put on a headlamp. BAD idea! Turns out that makes me wicked nauseous. I figured it out and carried the headlamp in my hand. Feet and knees started to hurt from the ups and downs and sand in my shoes. The demons set in after the 2nd aid station (10miles) and I started to walk berating myself for taking 2 years off of running, convinced that I would in no way be able to make my goals this year, wanting desperately to quit. At mile 15.5 we start lap 2 and I am really grateful Drew was not there. I dusted the sand out of my shoes, grabbed a proper flashlight, pulled up my big girl panties, stopped whining and started the second lap.

In the next 4 miles I regained my attitude. Went back to running 5, walking 2. Went back to smiling. Enjoyed the night, and the stars, and the way the half moon lit up the desert. Laughed at the big cacti that looked like giant men, and smiled at the coyotes that were singing and sounding alot like my puppy.

Got to the top of the steeper section of the climb and the monster struck back. I doubled over with stomach cramps, crawled off the trail, and my intestines just exploded. I wasn't quite quick enough with those panties... and lets say the rest of the race was pretty uncomfortable...

Whew. That was ugly. But, back in the game. Continued my walk/jog to the aid station (mile 20) then walked the technical section to mile 23. Decided that once I hit the smoother dirt road I would use the iPod and run one song, walk one song. And I DID! Walked/not-walked (it was more of a shuffle than a true run) the rest of the way in.

Finished in a really miserably slow time (a 20min PW), but I learned some good lessons. And, I regained the confidence that I can push through the bad things on the run and keep on running. I know for sure that I will be able to mentally push to a finish at the Double Ironman in just 1 weeks (yikes), though it will be slow. I have a long tough row to hoe to the finish of the DecaIronman in November, but I believe if I maintain my focus, drop 10 pounds, and keep pushing myself to run I will get there.

Drew said it will be hard for me to be an ultratriathlete again if I hate running, and I think if I had quit at the end of the first lap I may have agreed... But, it came to me in the second lap that I don't hate running... I may not be "good" at it yet, but actually kinda like it!


ps. Drew did the first lap in 1:4X and was in 3rd place. He was strong, and shut it down after that and walked the entire second lap to finish jsut under 6:30 hours. He's been dealing with a calf injury and the first lap was a great test... but we didn't want him running the whole thing and risk reinjuring it.


Friday, February 4, 2011

Snow sucks!

Unless you're Oliver, of course...

For us human folk it means LONG commutes with icy roads, and missed workouts. Facing an 8 hour trainer ride on Sunday....

Come on Springtime!!!


Monday, January 24, 2011

Swimming and puppiness...

I heard about this swim race a few weeks ago, and it was perfect timing. I've been back swimming for 3 months now, and have been building up my yardage, and this race gave me a great opportunity to get an idea where I am.

Compared to the fast swimmers, yeah, I suck. But, compared to where I thought I was, I'm rocking it pretty hard!

Drew and I showed up at the pool at 10am an a real swim meet was in progress. We checked in, heard there were 14 swimmers for the 2.4 mile race and they would be running it in stages (2 people per lane, the middle seed times would go in after the fastest lane finished), and sat back to watch the speedie fish swim. About a half hour later they announced only 12 people had checked in for the IM race, so we'd run 2 people per lane starting at around 11am. Looking at seed times, there were quite a few hour-type swimmers so I planned to swim my own race.

At quarter til we got in and warmed up... a little cool but not bad. Then when the real meet finished we spread out into
our lanes. Shook hands with my lane mate, and asked my lap counter to let me know every 1000 yds. The pool was 25yds, and we were to swim 169 laps for 4225 yds. Ready, go.

Push off the wall and try to swim steady. My plan was to pick it up every 4th length for the first 1000 which I did and which helped my track my laps. My lane-mate was just a hair slower than me, and there were markings on the wall every 5 feet, so I could watch when he came by and see if I put a little on him or he pulled me in. After 1000 I lost count and decided to just swim steady. No flip turns, but focus on clean turns, and steady strokes. There's the kick board signal, I must be at 2000. Starting to get a little tired, and a little bored. Eki
ng up the feet on my lane-mate. Watching the rest of the pool and see the first gal finish... 55 minutes. Yikes! Start seeing other finishers and realize the pool is going to be quiet soon. Where's my 3000 indicator? I have to be at 3000. 1:05 goes by. My counter must have forgot. There's Drew finishing, 1:07... nice! Getting really boring now... Finally a kick board, and she's yelling 200 to go. Pick it up as much as I can, lost all form I had, and finally hit the wall and done! Lane-mate finishes a lap later.

1:27:29. Sweet! If my old rules still apply that'd be under 1:20 open water, and more importantly 3:00 may be realistic at the Double IM in March. That one is in a 50m lap pool...


10th of 12 swimmers.
5 of the 12 went an hour or faster!

"Hey, that's MY toy!"

Maddy and Gretchen have fully accepted little Ollie into the family!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Oliver Holton

Last weekend Drew and I added a new pup to our family, little Oliver. He's a 2 month old White Shepherd/Great Pyranees mix and just the sweetest little boy. He like to follow Gretchen and Maddy around, and tried to play with Maddy's tail... The girls are tolerant of him, and seem a little confused how to play with this little furball.

It's good "sleep training" for me since he needs to get up a few times a night... but when he snuggles up to me I just drink a little coffee and let his puppyness ease the hole that was left when we lost Salida...

I think Ollie will be a great addition to our menagerie, and can't wait to see what he looks like when he grows up...