Sunday, April 20, 2008

Frisbee Golf and Bocce Ball

So the week has 'come to an end', Sundays are always a bit disappointing because that means Monday is around the corner. But this has been a good week, despite getting a bit 'sick' from Wednesday on. We started it out on Tuesday night with the Jack and Adams inaugural 'Splash and Dash' up at Pure Austin's north Quarry Lake location. It was a fun evening, Derick and I headed up there late afternoon for the 6:00 start for a 750 meter (more or less...probably less) swim followed by a 3k run. They guys at Jack and Adams had a great turnout, 55 people for the first one! This will take place every 3rd Tuesday of the month from now through the majority of the summer. This of course is placed in between the 2nd and 4th Tuesday South Mopac bike Time Trials. Busy summer in Austin! But this is all such fun stuff, great ways to get out and be a 'little' competitive in lieu of a solo workout and track progress. Check out the splash and dash's if you live in Austin here:

So, after a late evening Tuesday night, I started feeling a sore throat coming on. I always 'try' to chalk these up to just allergies, but it got a lot worse on Wednesday, in my head, nose, etc. I think I was able to 'kick this' thanks to a few nights of 10+ hours of sleep, as I still did some workouts but definitely scaled them back significantly. Last year at this time, I got nailed with a sinus infection and that is no fun...took antibiotics to get rid of that. So, I'll head out for a run in a but but I think that this will leave my body soon.

Derick gave a talk at Source on Wednesday night on power training. We do these 'discussions' about once a month at work, usually 6:00 on a Wednesday evening. He did great, the group was small but he is extremely good at presenting information and with his current grad school work, he has learned so much 'more' about how the body works. So, I enjoyed listening to this and reinforcing a lot of things I know but of course picking up some great ideas for training (my athletes, that is). That again was a bit of a 'late night' too, we got home around 8:30 and had yet to have dinner...but, so it goes!

I had really planned to nail a few good run workouts this week, and I got in one on Monday morning (400's on the track which for me are tough, though almost 'too short' to really wear me out!) and had to pretty much nix my Friday Tempo run. But that is OK, if it can allow me to get 100% healthy it is worth it. Derick and I ended the week/started the weekend with a game of Frisbee Golf at Zilker Park. I guess this is becoming our 'regular Friday out', followed by dinner somewhere. What a great way to 'spend time outside' without terribly exerting yourself! We even ride our cruisers around town to play and eat on Friday nights. We hit up El Arroyo on 5th street, hmm...a very sorority-laden restaurant, a decent (albeit $10) margarita and mediocre food. But good service and a good experience. Saturday we rode for about 2-2.5 hours together (which we usually NEVER do!) and then ordered Home Slice Pizza and played Bocce Ball in our yard! Pizza, beer, and bocce...cannot get much better than that!

I also received my new Scott bike and the components! This is very exciting. I am a part of the Zoot Triathlon Team again for '08, last year we were on Orbea and this year it is Scott. This bike is beautiful (though I have to say I get 'attached' to bikes, will be tough to move on from my Orange Ordu!) and I am anxious to get on it. The guys (actually, James the great mechanic) at Jack and Adams are putting it together for me and I will get it later this week. Derick claims he can put the SRM on it, hmm...we'll see about that. I also received my 'gear' being clothing, Cheetah bars, Zoot bag, transition shoes, etc last week. Thanks Zoot, looking forward to another good year!

So that is my week in a peanut-shell. Nothing terribly exciting, the Indianapolis Mini Marathon is in 2 weeks. I am a bit leery of my progress seeing that I had to miss a good week however, with all the racing I have been doing lately, I have to be smart, stay healthy and be sure to be recovering well. I know that I have a run much faster than my current best of 1:18 in me, just have to run a smart race and prepare well the days going into it. And, truly believe that I can run faster. In addition, it will be a great 5 days at home in Indy with my family (and Derick will come too, I think I have talked him into racing!)

Happy Sunday, enjoy the rest of the weekend and have a nice week. And if you have never played Frisbee Golf, I highly recommend it! Though, I am pretty awful at it...but, don't have to be competitive at everything, right?

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


This past weekend, I went to St. Louis for the Go! St. Louis Half Marathon. It was such a nice weekend. I flew out of Austin at 5:00 Friday evening, direct into St. Louis, where my parents met me at the airport. We drove into the 'city' and found a nice little italian joint called "Charlie Gitto's." Very tasty.

Now you may be wondering, 'Why do her parents always come to her races..isn't she, um, married or something?' Well, I am not married but will be in September...however Derick and I don't often go to eachothers races. If we can drive and it is convenient (or we both race) then we go together. But, the one 'limiting' factor is simply expenses. It is expensive enough (especially triathlons!) for one of us to fly to a race, much less the other one to support! It'd be great to have him at my races, but I totally understand our situation and I think the time away is good. Also, being around my mom and dad really relaxes me. They are just the coolest parents, and we can talk about anything...they are very go with the flow (except when we eat at an expensive restaurant, dad...) and understanding of the 'needs' when I race (ie. having to sit around the whole day prior...however, we do always hit up a nice dinner and glass of wine or beer even the night before the race!).

Anyway, moving on...we all got in safely and enjoyed a relaxing Friday night. I actually posted a full race story on my website, so I will let you visit that to find out all about it. In short, I won the race and was very happy with it. My 'goal' was to race this one smart, I have been hauling ass at the start of every race lately and paying for it significantly by mid-race. And it is no fun, because I am gasping for air as well...I know this 'is racing', however I wanted to really control the front end and race within myself this time. I accomplished this, as I ran a 1:20 and felt very good right at/around that 6-min pace. There was some drama that unfolded upon the finish which you can read about in the race story, but there was one very cool thing about this race that happened once I returned home. I received an email from the girl (girl! she is young, only a sopohomore in college! geez do I feel old...) who had gotten second place, in a very respectable time of 1:24. She simply emailed me to say 'Congrats' and ask me a few questions about race recovery. She also happens to be at University of Illinois, my alma mater, which made it a bit more of a common bond. Upon a few emails back and forth, she sounds like a really great girl and a hell of a runner for sure. She ended one email with saying to me, "Women like you inspire me to keep setting higher goals and sticking to it :) Keep on throwin' it down!" That is just so cool to me that I can 'inspire' her like that.

I don't think of myself as much for inspiration, I just go do what I do and work very hard. But I know what it is like to be inspired by something. I think we all are in small ways we may not even realize sometimes...we hear something about someone, we see something in a news report, someone who has raised money for a charity or has started an organization...and without realizing it, any type of 'admiration' is really a form of inspiration. What really struck me in what she said was 'keep setting higher goals'. If there is one single thing that keeps me going, it is just that. Setting higher and higher goals. Will I reach them? I sure hope so. But if they are very high, I may not. I know that. But the process of working towards them sure is amazing. And I have to (we have to) learn to separate our identities from if we do or do not attain these goals. That can be tough...putting it all on the line leaves us vulnerable, open to criticism and of course failure. But without trying, without putting it all on the line, we never know what we are capable of doing.

I could go on forever but in a nutshell, it left me with a great feeling to have 'inspired' this girl. In all reality she should be inspiring me, she is young and extremely talented. And in a way, she does! She has a great attitude towards life and is not afraid to set high 'limits' for herself. The way I see it, we cannot ever achieve great things if we do not risk failing...and failing is really only in the eye of the beholder, because anytime I fail to meet a goal, I use it as a stepping stone towards the next attempt. ...Thanks for reading my rant for today. :) And don't be afraid to get out there and LIVE!