Wednesday, September 23, 2009


The quality of my training is dependent on a number of material things that are not sports related. These are random things in no particular order that make me toe curling happy and feel good!

S Pellegrino Water

Sparkling mineral water. I love when they serve it at restaurants, and finally realized one day I could just GET SOME FOR MYSELF (duh). This is my happy soda substitute. A friend of mine has a seltzer maker, maybe one day I will get one of those. Anyway - not for training, but during a good meal and as a treat. It's a good thing!

Flourless, Organic, Complete Protein, and Sprouted Whole Grain. What?

Sprouted bread! Gluten Free! Rich in protein, vitamins, minerals and fiber; very, very tasty - also very expensive, but hey I don't eat bread any more. (Well, most of the time) So; I eat this and it's lovely - especially warm and/or toasted. The cinnamon raisin is a keeper. Oh, and it freezes very well!

I am loving the honey infused lip balm, and the radiance face lotion (SPF 15). The lip balm is a must for me especially with outdoor workouts, and it tastes so good and stays on forever. The radiance face lotion – I have to work it into my skin a bit or the brown looks a lil ashy, but it does make my face more radiant. I have even gotten comments. Positive ones! All natural, and widely available...

Dr Bronners Magic Peppermint soap

The liquid one. All natural. If you ever get bored, read the label. - All One! It comes in tea tree, eucalyptus, unscented, lavender (which I also adore) and citrus….I can shower forever with this. The peppermint soothes and picks me up at the same time.

Say Yes To Carrots Pampering Hair Mud Conditioner

So moisturizing and gives my hair great slip. Ultra conditioning. It is a staple and helps de frizz and de kink my hair after swimming or a really hot day. All Natural! Paraben Free! I love this stuff.

WigWam running socks

Ahhh, the agony of defeet, especially when you are not a runner trying to run! I have worn these at my tri and on my long runs and find them sooo comfy. I do have a small sock fetish – I also like Thorlos and Balega but I reach for my wigwams over and over again.

Oat Bran

I could eat this every day for breakfast and be perfectly happy. Wait – I already do. In fact when I cannot get this I don’t feel quite as good as I usually do. I love oat bran. I prepare it with some apple and banana and cinnamon in it – ambrosial! Very fueling, high fiber, lowers cholesterol, and moves the luggage too!

Amazing Grass superfood –

I like the chocolate flavor. This is a Green Superfood that is packed with antioxidants, a probiotic and enzymatic blend. Great energy boost! It is delicious and has practically no calories. I need never take a wheatgrass shot again! It comes in chocolate which I love mixing with milk or my coffee, but I also use the regular one which has no flavor and I will mix it in my juice (I am not a smoothie person, otherwise I would probably put it into that) Delicious, nutritious, and makes you feel ambitious.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Swimming with the Fishies

They call it Master's Swimming because they work you like a slave!

Don't get me wrong - I am so happy to have found it and joined. I am sure it's good training and that it will pay off big time. It sure is cheaper than the Jack Rabbit classes and meets twice a week instead of once.

But; really. This type of self flagellation....this manifestation of hair shirts....takes some getting used to, and hours of sleep to get over.

I was very sleepy this week. I think it was coming off of the anxiety aboutthe tri , plus the change of temperature. It's pretty chilly in the mornings, and crisp - perfect running weather. Ah, but no - I have taken the week off to sleep a wee bit later in the morning. The 5 am stuff gets played out with me after 6-8 months or so! But I did rush out after work to go to Masters.

I LOVE the water....lakes, oceans, beaches especially, ponds, pools, fishtanks, showers...dosen't matter. During long cold winters I dream repeatedly about swimming, the beach, the ocean. It's my psyche longing for what it loves. However, in swimming I am sloooowwww....I think everyone swims faster than me. I think I love being in the water so much that part of my brain gets distracted. Yeah, thats the ticket - I love the water so much my brain gets distracted.

I am the slowest person in the slow group, LOL. I a trying to soak up the instruction however and even I know I am swimming SO much better. Once in awhile they bump me into the next lane to drill with the faster group that just drills (no instruction) and I can do that just fine - I am just the slower swimmer. Whatever, really. I could sleep for a day afterwards, however.Getting up the next morning is always more of a challenge.

Today I suited up and went to my local parks and rec to swim - I probably did a little over a mile. If my cap and goggles are not giving me a hard time (miraculously today they were NOT) I can swim and swim non stop for about an hour, which I did today. It felt soooooo good. I came home and did 30 minutes on the trainer, and TRIED to run a little on the treadmill, but only got a mile in. My head was really hurting: a combination of sinuses and post pool head, I think.

I have a 5k next week, I am really looking forward to it. I a not concerned about the time at all, this will be a fun run for me. The run traces the path of a Brooklyn firefighter who, when he heard about theWorld Trade Center being attacked, put on his gear and ran from Brooklyn to Manhattan (the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel was closed to traffic by then). He and his entire squad passed that day. The run benefits an important foundation and has a zillion people that participate - its is called the Tunnel to Towers run.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Trek Women's Triathlon NYC Race Report

I must not fear.

Fear is the mind-killer.

Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.

I will face my fear.

I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.

Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.

Only I will remain.

- Bene Gesserit Litany against Fear

I would be remiss if I didn’t admit that up until two days before the race I was seriously considering NOT doing the race. It is so much easier to stay in bed…and I was still upset that I did not do the race in July (what one has to do with the other, who knows. Not me.) In addition I was just plain nervous. A veritable cornucopia of nerves, I was.

I went to the packet pick up the day before, and talked to some vendors and met Sally Edwards again. She and the staff of the race did their best to be friendly and informative and alleviate pre race jitters. I would say that they did a great job. I was thinking of me bouncing around with a bunch of young, zero body fat heifers who used to be professional swimmers, bikers, and have natural running talent that helps them average 6 minute miles. What I did see were regular every day women of all shapes, sizes and abilities and ages. The youngest participant was 17, and the oldest I believe was 72. It calmed me down alot and made me feel that I could actually finish the race.

Why did I not realize this sucker started at 6:30 am – with transition opening at 4:30? Wow. Wow oh wow. Fortunately the weather SUCKED on Saturday, so after the packet pickup I can home and took a nap. Me. Took a nap. That is how nervous I was, I never take a nap over 15 minutes long. Those two hours helped however, as I was not able to go to sleep at 9 or 10…more like 11 pm.

I set out everything I could figure I might need – at the last minute, I decided I would wear my tri shorts over my bathing suit. No one needs to see thing 1 and thing 2 unsheathed, and hopefully it would not add to any drag in the pool. I also packed the sports beans I got that day, mixed an energy drink in a bottle, and froze a water bottle to store on Elphaba for the ride.

I woke all on my own at 3 am. I had some eggs, toast and coffee – yeah I had the nerve to be HUNGRY. We left at 5 am, and got there about 20 minutes later. It was pitch black outside, and as the transition area was not near a parking lot, it was difficult to tell where the heck we were going. I didn’t think to bring a flashlight! I racked my bike – not realizing how very close together these bikes actually are. Wow. I think next year they really need to have more volunteers to point out where you are going on the long walk from parking to transition.

Ditto body marking – get more volunteers, or just make sure it is not some vaguely unpleasant sweaty guy marking your arms and legs while you are in a swimsuit – or just give me the marker, I will mark my own arms and legs. Although I think HE had a really good time, LOL.

The lineup for the swim was kinda funny. We had to line up by number and then stand there while they were making all these announcements – have you ever heard a loudspeaker in a pool? Kinda hard to tell what the heck they are talking about, everything is all echoooooooo…what? huh? We sang the national anthem, and then about 15 minutes off of start time, people started swimming.

The pool was 50 meter lanes, and was in a snake style – swim down one lane before getting to the next, going under the rope, until you have done all 8 lanes and you exit the pool.

For once, my swim cap stayed on. My goggle did fog and I stopped at the end of a lane twice to clear the one that kept fogging up (that anti fog BS is a waste!) I saw women who breaststrokes, sidestrokes, and backstroked. Mostly freestyle however.

Next thing I knew, I was in the pool, and next thing after that, I started the swim. I very quickly was on the heel of the woman in front of me – and at the same time, passed by the woman behind me. I passed two or three more people – the lanes were nice and wide – and after the first few passes there was not anyone even close to me, so the spacing was good.

I was pleased with my swim! Other than the goggles bs, I did well with my slow self. The last time I timed myself, it was 15 minutes. I gave my time as 14:00 for the waves…my time was 12 minutes. I took it just a notch above pretty easy.

Out of the pool, I was SO happy to have the swim go well I dawdled in transition for three whole minutes. I actually dried myself off, sat down and out my shoes on…LOL. The bike was so flat and fast – the most difficult part was at one section of the course, the lanes narrowed greatly and people were not calling left or staying to the right – so I would stay behind whoever I was behind during that part of the loop, but once we were on the open road again, I would take off.

I picked off a lot of people during the bike – at least 20. Only three passed me, and that was during the narrow part of the course I just mentioned. I guess all those hills paid off.

Back into T2, I could NOT make myself run with the bike. I just couldn’t. Then all of a sudden I could not even locate where my bike was supposed to go! Too much adrenaline. I got onto my running shoes pretty quick however and started to run – NOT.

My legs felt like lead pieces.

I should have practiced more bricks.

It was not until mile two that I did NOT feel like absolute crap. By then, I could hear the announcer and cheering so that also helped a lot. The actual finish was wonderful – DH just before the line who I gave a high five, and Sally Edwards who gave me a double high five and a big hug. Right there they took my chip and gave me the neat medal I have.

After, we stayed to cheer on other finishers, took a few pictures, but there was not much to do. I did not realize until I was on the computer later that I placed FIRST in the ATHENA division – the one I competed in . A young lady I met the day before and was encouraging – her first too, and she was nervous about the swim – took SECOND! Additionally, another girl I met on a weekend beach ride - she placed FIRST OVERALL!!

Wow, I am sorry I didn’t get a chance to actually STAND on the podium, but hey I still did it!

Importantly, I felt GREAT after the race, and the next day too. No bashes gashes or soreness. I was even ready to go to the gym with DH later that day, except he didn’t go.

I am so grateful to DH for putting up with me and my crazy shecdule and rantings and soreness. I am grateful for two virtual friends who started online challenges I participated in – Pinkskates and Queeny – that got me in the mode of thinking I could exercise for more than an hour at a time and in different things. I am also so grateful for my virtual friends a BeginnerTriathlete who are so insane and encouraging and of great practical value, LOL!

Enough of the speeches, but I am SO amped, two days later. I have spent so much blogging time complaining, let me have some tiny space to rejoice! I CAN do this!

Now to determine the next race…….

Sunday, September 13, 2009

I did it!

I completed my first Triathlon - the Trek Women's Tri.

I had SO much fun!

All that suffering paid did the newly added Master's swimming... I PLACED FIRST IN MY DIVISION!!

......and yes there was more than me in the Athena division.....

I will post a full race report in the next day or so.