Wednesday, June 30, 2010

ONE MONTH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Holy wow... one month until the race. One month to fully prepare myself mentally and physically for the "big day." One month to be all that I can be, train as hard as I can train...and try to break down the mental walls that seem to be conquering me harder than the physical challenges of this training.

I really need to start meditating again, practicing visualization techniques and self-motivation. I need to drop the negative self talk and replace it with only positivity. I need to truly BELIEVE that I can accomplish all that I set out to do. I suppose I just sound like I need to convince MYSELF, right? I just need to accept the fact that I can, in fact, actually embrace the term "athlete" and allow myself to fall under that category... I AM an athlete, right?? I mean, some days I definitely do not feel like one... I feel like a wannabe... a fake... a phoney...I feel like I have the drive and desire but lack the physical prowess to back it up.

But you know what... I can do this. I CAN do this. I WILL do this. I am GOING to do this. I am ABLE to do this.

Tonight, Randi and I swam 3300 yards...It was supposed to be 3000... but I get so wrapped up on my music and start jamming out... next thing I know, 3000 turns into 3300...and I'm flying (well, not really) down the lanes, oblivious to the world around me. Bobbie also gave us some pointers and a lesson on reaching and pulling... now, in the words of Randi "If only I can implement it..." But it's getting better.

In any case, I am excited for the weekend.... I can't wait to get back to Mission Trails with Jackie and explore the "finer" parts of San Diego via bicycle... Tomorrow = bike, run, swim... Friday = my birthday fun... and then... then comes the glorious weekend...

I WILL DO THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

a summer cold?

So I woke up this morning extremely sore... and with a head cold. AWESOME. So I popped a couple tylonol and am now chugging a large batch of Emergen-C. Not happy. I have way too much to accomplish the rest of this week and this weekend. Tonight, I have a swim session with Bobbie because I think my technique has gone to hell and is ineffective... and I have to somehow pull out this fantastic 3000m swim workout... complete with sprints and progressive 100s. Should be a good time, especially for a slow swimmer like myself. Lets just hope that it doesn't take 2 hours.

As a kid, I'd frequently injure (strain/sprain/whatever) my neck and lately, I've been having incredibly annoying shoulder/neck problems. I noticed last night, around 9pm, that my left shoulder and side of my neck was extremely uncomfortable. I struggled to find a decent position to sleep in, knowing that if I slept on my right side, my shoulder nerve impingement would get aggrivated.... so I ended up sleeping on my stomach, as usual, but with my hands shoved under the pillow in a position that is tolerable to my ailments... (See, I told you guys that I'm getting old!!!) And so today I'm sitting at my desk with one of those heat patches on my shoulders... ugh... totally NOT the way I wanted to start my day...

... and to top it all off... my 8 year old SIM card in my new phone (been with Tmobile for 8 years, haven't ever had to replace the card) died and my phone isn't working... so off to the tmobile store I will go during "lunch."

Good times... NOT a good way to approach a Wednesday.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

the wheels on the bike go round and round

Fabulous workout today... Thank you, Randi!! 20 mile ride, 5 mile run... great company. I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Felt so refreshing to ride around lake miramar (albeit frustrating with all of the pedestrian and casual bike traffic) but the wind (and there was a stiff wind) in my hair, the overcast sky allowing me to wear a sweatshirt, and a good friend at my side... I felt so good. Even the run... In fact, I really do love running - just not a fast pace. At a 9:25/mile, I am super happy...relaxed... my HR gets high - but I can breathe easily, talk to friends, enjoy my surroundings. (Maybe this is because my AT is 166!!! and my LT is 197!)

I'm getting pretty excited for this race... this weekend requires some high mileage...and I'm excited for it. Friday is my 29th birthday - and to commemorate it, we are swimming 2 miles, then running for 9... followed by dinner in La Jolla... anyone is welcome to join for some or all of it. Should be a good time :)

So finally... I've found the love again... I'm smiling through my workouts... I feel alive... I've felt strong on my last two runs... Perhaps the training is working afterall, right?

Bring it ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

flirting with disaster?

So those of you who know me well... you know I'm not a sprinter... I'm not "fast twitch" inclined. When it comes to my approach to sports, I live for LSD (no, no.... nothing illegal... LONG, SLOW DISTANCE) And for quite some time now, I've had this recurring dream (literally, at night... sleeping...a dream) about doing an ultra marathon. And after a lot of thought, I've decided that doing one is going to be my next endeavor for next year.

So I'm sitting here looking at and wondering... which one will I do? Definitely not a 100 miler... maybe a 50 miler... but I'm thinking that starting with 50k might be the most intelligent choice of the three. I wonder if there are any NOT on that list that might be worth doing. I don't see Oriflamme on there... sounds like fun, but it's up in Sacramento and in April... though the benefits to that would be that it's a bit cooler... though I think I'm looking for something in the Fall of 2011...

Now this is all just thoughts in my head for right now... I just think it's funny that Jax goal is to BQ next year (because she's fast) and I just want to go long and slow... (well... because I'm not fast) -- but she's definitely more of a sprinter (and more of an athlete) than I will ever be. (Maybe if I were to lose the boobs... I'd be a faster runner... HAHA!!)

In any case... I always need to have a new goal, a new plan... This half ironman training has been awesome - I just now know that I'm going to have to wait until the kids are a bit older to really even start considering doing a full ironman. Jax and I said by 2018... so I guess we'll see what happens in the future. But it's nice to be excited about the future...and finding new limits to push, new goals to achieve...

For now, I'm going to enjoy my training, my family, my friends... and see what I'm truly made out of. I woke up this morning a bit sore from class but with a renewed focus and love for all of this craziness.

...Barb's Race (1/2 Iron) ; Malibu (Oly) and then... La Piece de La Resistance... the RnR Half... where I hope to go sub-2 hours ... which would mean crushing my recently achieved PR by 12 minutes... Can I do it??? I'm sure as hell going to try.

Can't wait for this weekend - lots of miles and fun to be shared along the pavement and on the trails with some of my best friends... and lots of time to be spent with the family.

Monday, June 28, 2010

i found the love

Funny how a great class can do wonders for me... today was the Monday night class at Rehab United and it was awesome. I had such a great time - all 60 muscle burning, sweat dripping, body pumping moments of it. It was truly awesome. Not only was the company great but the workout itself was a lot of fun. With Jax as my partner as usual, we had a blast. I even enjoyed the crazy ab workout that we did. So thank you to everyone who was there, and most importantly - to Bryan and Lesley - for leading a phenomenal workout!!

Today was overall a good day... got a decent swim in at the Y before the RU class... had a great workout with my friends... got home feeling somewhat Zen about everything... Looking forward to this weekend's workouts...which will include TRAIL RUNNING with Jackie... I can't wait to get back to Mission Trails... I've missed them so much... And can't wait to embark upon my ULTRA training... must do at least 30 for my 30th next year... and we'll go from there. But all in all, I've found the excitement and spark again... and I'm super excited for what the future holds, in so many aspects of my life.

Right now, I'm feeling very focused... very relaxed...and very excited. Out here, triathlon really isn't a "hobby" it's an entire lifestyle, a way of life... you eat, live, breathe, sleep, incorporate your family into it... it consumes you... in a good way... but really - the community out here is fantastic... the support system - incredible... and I couldn't ask for a better journey to have embarked upon in my life.


After yesterday's wonderful experience at SDIT (thank you, RANDI!!) I am feeling good...A new training week…. And I am excited for it. I am ready to rock and roll…. Feeling quite renewed from the weekend. (Now ask me again next Monday, and the tune might change… but for now, I am going to approach this week with a smile and eager excitement… )

Today will be a swim followed by the Rehab United Tri-Strength with Jax and some of my favorite friends and training buddies. Should be a good workout among good company. Tomorrow is slated for a 2 hour ride and a 30-40 minute… Wednesday is a killer 3000m swim… Thursday is ride/run followed by helping the beginners at the De Anza Cove swim… Friday is my 29th birthday – and we are celebrating by swimming 2 miles and then running 9… and a nice, conversational, fun 9. Nothing crazy… just good company… good conversation…. And then the weekend. Currently on the schedule for Saturday is a 60 mile ride, followed by an 8 mile run…and Sunday has us down for a 10k run followed by 40-50 on the bike… Holy crap. We’ll see how that fits into my life and schedule, but I do know that I’ll get it done to the best of my ability…but am also going to be mindful that we have a nice, long weekend ahead of us and spending time with friends and family is definitely high on the priority list as well).

I keep having this dream (every night for the past few nights) about doing an ultra… in the dream, I’m flying (well, those of you who know how I run know that I most certainly do not “fly”) along the trails, past some of the most amazing scenery I’ve ever seen…. Well, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about it – and I think I want to make this happen next year. I’ve always said I wanted to run 30 for my 30th… and I am going to make it happen…

I won’t be doing another half iron for awhile. I just don’t have the time between family, work, and soon GRAD SCHOOL to devote the time to the brick workouts and the long hours of training… so next year, I will be running-focused with cross training in swimming and biking… doing a few Olys and sprints here and there… but really focusing on the Rs in my life: relationships (family/friends), running, reading (school) and relaxation  I have a few running goals that I want to accomplish… and will attack those with tenacity… and excitement.

SO I challenge myself to attack this week’s training with a renewed energy and excitement…. To push myself as hard as I can… and to accomplish the goals that I’ve set out to accomplish… and to do them in good company, with a good attitude…and look towards the future with a smile  It WILL be good. Oh yes… so much to come… so much potential… so many opportunities to explore and situations to pursue that might just be coming out of the woodwork.

Lets DO THIS!!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

trying to deconstruct the mental wall

I found it.
I found it.
I found it.

Today... I swim buddied for 2 waves... and then ran the 10k portion of the triathlon with my good buddy, Randi... I loved every step of that run. It wasn't blisteringly wasn't slow... it was just PERFECT. The weather was amazing... the conversation and company was awesome... I was reminded of why I loved triathlon - the community... the races... the scenery (in more ways than one!!) and just being around other athletically driven people.

The smell of the bay air... the hot pavement under my feet... the light breeze in my hair... the beat of my heart and rhythm of my breathing... I was hypnotized with every step that we took, smiling the entire way...

I have no doubt in my mind that come race day, I will push myself to new limits..I will bring my "A" Game and aim for the best race that I can put on... I will push myself through these next few weeks, giving it my all...and come race day - I will attack the course with all of my physical and mental being. I can't wait for that moment... the sounding of the gun... the swell of the water as the wave starts... the rush of adrenaline and that moment when you realize "holy shit, I'm RACING!!" And most importantly - I can't wait for that magical moment when my feet hit the timing mat and my race ends... and I can collapse into the arms of friends and family, having accomplished what I once would have thought was a very lofty goal.

I only started doing triathlon last season. (Actually, I started running last season too - my first half marathon eve being Carlsbad 2009)... April 2009 was my first triathlon...and I was hooked. But had you even mentioned to me 3 years ago that I would have run 2 full marathons, ten half marathons, dozens of 5ks and 10ks... olympic and sprint tris... I would have laughed at you. I played sports in high school but I was not athletic. i was overweight... I was very slow (not that I'm fast now LOL) but I really didn't consider myself to be an athlete, even at the varsity level... and I think I still struggle with that today - calling myself a true "athlete."

I think so much of the time, I still really do view myself as that sluggish fat girl in high school. I look in the mirror and can't get past that sometimes. Again, it's always my own head that seems to be my biggest enemy. I really need to get past the mental blocks that I set within myself - I would probably accomplish so more... not only as an "athlete" but as a person as well.

I get going, I start to give it my all... and then... SLAM... right into the mental wall of "Well, I won't be able to do as well as I want to anyway... so why keep pushing!!" Or "Well, I'm not as good as ______ and never will be... so why bother?" I don't know what it is - but I just seem to be my biggest challenge. Now if only I can just break through the mental wall...

Slowly... ever so slowly... I am starting to chip away at this wall...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

not a quitter

On Thursday night - this weekend's plans changed significantly. My best friend and training partner, Jackie, experienced something that no parent ever wants to experience. Her son, Shanne, fractured his skull and got a bad concussion. We were supposed to race SDIT this weekend as a relay with her mom, Bobbie... but we didn't feel that it was karmically right for us to do the race under the circumstances and that Jackie needed to focus on her son and her family, at this time. Thankfully, after a night in the hospital and a lot of sleep, he is doing better...recovering still...but doing better... which is a true relief to all of us.

So today... I rode my bike from my house to the expo, where I had decided to volunteer regardless of extenuating circumstances. I had a fantastic ride from South Bay to Spanish Landing park... getting to view from my bike, some of the (less) finer parts of San Diego. I had a blast!! I was reminded of why I enjoyed riding so much - the ability to explore new places, see new things...from the seat of my beloved Rocket.

This is why I need to keep reminding myself that it's back to basics. Back to exploring. back to incorporating enjoyment into training. Back to training hard, but training for the right reasons - for me, for accomplishment... for enjoyment. But after a week of inner turmoil, I am ready to resume a new training week.

Tomorrow I am going to swim buddy at the race...and then run with a friend for the 10k portion. I might even ride part of the course. But I am going to enjoy it, help others, and immerse myself in the community that I have grown to love.

I have, however, re-evaluated my bucket list. I had initially thought I might want to set my sights on some larger races... additional 70.3s in the future... but I am not ready. Next year, I want to focus on my running... which is truly my achilles heel in triathlon... I plan to do a couple marathons...and honestly, I would really like to do an ultra. I turn 30 next year, so I think that I am going to make it my goal to run 30 for my 30th.

I think that after that, I am going to stick with olympic distances and a few sprints to keep it fun... but I am not going to devote my life to training. I have a few running goals that I want to achieve... but I don't think they will require the type of training that we have been doing now... and I look forward to seeing what some focused training on a sport-specific race will be able to do for me. I, of course, plan to cross train in the other disciplines (how could I give up my beloved biking? or the relaxation I find in swimming?) But things will be different.

I've been thinking about ultras more and more lately. It seems so much more up my alley... longer, slower, back to nature. I love the feel of dirt and gravel beneath my feet... the way I feel on the trails... the freedom that nature affords me. I think I am going to throw this into the "less distant future" list... and less in the back of my mind than I've put it in the past. You can learn so much about yourself, about your running partners... about life...nature...passion... on the trails...and I look forward to getting to embrace that.

Back to nature... Zen... peace... bring it on!!

(But for now, I am ready to embrace a new training week... gotta finish what I started and finish strong...I've gotta lose the negative attitude and the "cannot do" thoughts that I've been having...and bring back the push, the pain, the drive... and kick this back into high gear...I'm NOT a quitter)

Friday, June 25, 2010

the wheels in my head

So I’ve decided to put the “fun” back in racing and training. For the last few months, my life has been consumed by pressure, by failure, by self-defeat and negative self-talk. But you know what? I’m done with all that. I race not because I think I have a snowball’s chance in hell of placing… I race because I love the sport(s)… I race because I love the sense of accomplishment and pride that I get when my feet hit the finishing mat… I love the feeling of the cold finisher’s medal against my sweaty, hot skin as I proceed down the finish chute to find my friends and family. I love the look of amazement on my children’s faces when I tell them how long the race was… “Wow, mommy, that is FAR” (which I get from every distance from 5k to 26.2 LOL) but I also love how my involvement in triathlon makes my kids want to participate too.

And with that – I am going back to basics. I am going to enjoy my training. I am going to push myself to my limits on race day and see how far these legs and arms can take me. But I am not going to hate myself if I fail to set a specific time goal. When I originally set out to do this half ironman, I said “I just want to finish.” That turned into “I want to finish sub 7 hours…” which turned into other goals that I think are nearly impossible. I simply just can’t go THAT fast. Sure, I’m an athlete. But to what degree? My brain is far less of an athlete than my lungs, arms, and legs…and on the bike, even my legs can’t keep up with what my heart and lungs could accomplish.

I am going to strive to be better…faster…stronger…. But I am going to enjoy it too. I am going to stop riding loops around fiesta to get “more mileage” for my time… and I am going to head up Soledad…Cabrillo…the Coast… up to UCSD and around La Jolla/Del Mar… I am going to see as much of San Diego as I can on my two wheels, two feet, or swim wherever my arms can carry me. I am going to leave the pool as often as possible in favor of the Cove, the Shores, or even De Nasty. I am going to run in new places whenever possible… and I am going to have fun with my training partners.

I have to do this for ME again. I have to remember WHY I do this.

I finished my bike ride yesterday in tears. And for those of you who know me, know how much I love riding over all else. Yesterday, I just didn’t want to be there. I didn’t want to run… or swim… or bike for that matter. But I did… begrudgingly. In the water, I was frustrated with my wetsuit because it takes on so much water and I felt like the floating Michelin Tire Woman… I was loping along until I heard Jax’s voice next to me “Let do this!!” And we were off. Now, even without her wetsuit it was a struggle to stay at her side… but just that short burst of united energy was enough to motivate me to pick up the pace. If only my own voices in my head could be so motivating.

I really need to learn to get outside my head when I’m training. To disconnect mind and body and just perform, much like a machine. Sure, I’ve made great improvement in my mental toughness… but I’ve got a long ways to go when it comes to overcoming the mental walls. The other day I told Jax… “I think my motivation bonked…and that my whole body is flat… not my tires…my whole body. I’m done!” And it was.

I’m racing this weekend… sort of. Well, rather, Jax, Bobbie and I are doing SDIT as a relay. We did it last year and came in 3rd. We are hoping to do better this year. But I’m scared. Scared that with how I’ve been feeling, I won’t be able to perform as well as I want to… but you know what – we do relays because they are fun, because we can do well with combining our strengths… and I need to remember that… remember it, enjoy it, and make my legs scream in pain as I push up Cabrillo.

And after all, as one of my friends told me yesterday “Tomorrow is a new run day.” And it is…. And a new swim and bike day as well.

See you all at the Cove tonight 

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

the tale of the pink trek

So I was looking at my results for the last year… and as it turns out… my PR for RnR was a 4 minute PR… nothing huge but still… I suppose I should try to look at the small accomplishments instead of simply aiming for the one huge one.

Last night, I was struggling around Fiesta Island... struggling mentally, not physically. For those of you who haev ridden with me before, you know I hate being passed. Someone passes me, and I try my hardest to "get them" -- an unfortunate habit that has gotten me into trouble several times before. As I cruised at 25.25 mph, a tiny man on a bright pink Trek plowed by me... staring my direction as he wizzed by, almost taunting me with his eyes...he was doing it on purpose. He has been on the island every time that I've TT'd around it, for the last few months... and he's always behind me... until that one part of fiesta that goes downhill... he then plows down at lightning speed... and passes me. One of my loops, I was determined to not let him pass me... I pushed as hard as I could... I thought I had him... Then... I heard it... the sound of someone behind me... I tried to hold on, but he was just too fast. That tiny man, on the bright pink bike... passed me... yet again... Moments later, I was engulfed in the peleton that is the Tues/Thursday "world cup" ride or something. I was so scared, I nearly fell off my bike...but tried to hang on to the wheel of the last rider for a few... I could not. But I tried.

I felt my motivation coming back last night... I'll get there again... but for now, I've got a date with 2800 in the pool.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Today it feels like this blog should be more like "learning to fall" because that's how I feel lately.

Training has seemingly consumed my life, and I am too far in to give up or back out now. This weekend called for entirely too many hours of training...and I was not emotionally ready for it... I don't think... I mean physically, I was fine... but loping up torrey to the trails, I broke down into tears...

Monday, June 14, 2010


Tonight, I broke down during my weekly class at Rehab United. I cried. Now, did I cry in front of anyone? Well, not really. But the bathroom door shielded me from watchful eyes. I really don't think the workout was to blame... just ultra sensitive tonight...

I've been having a lot of doubts lately... will I be able to perform on race day? I've set expectations for myself... others have most likely done the same for me since they see me putting in the hours... but what if I fail? What if I don't come close to my goals? What if I'm aiming too high? I don't feel like I'm getting better. Some days, I feel stronger... but most days, I see those around me improving and I put in the time... and don't feel like I'm accomplishing anything major. I don't know what it is... but I cannot get past my own fears, my own walls...

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Goal Setting

Last night, Jax and I stayed behind after our Tri Strength class to talk with Bryan about our goals. It was extremely motivating and I realized that I was selling myself short with some of my goals.

I've always had a "problem" with believing in myself, especially as an athlete. I've never really considered myself an athlete, and even 2 full marathons and 9 half marathons (not to mention the countless 5ks, 10ks, training runs, etc) that I've accomplished, I still do not really feel like I can call myself a runner. Perhaps it just comes with the lifelong lack of self-esteem that I've had, or perhaps since I've just never set goals for myself before, I've never had a true measurement of achievement.

I was "the fat kid" growing up. I played as a young kid, then field hockey and lacrosse at the varsity level in high school... but I was overweight, and have always had self-image problems because of it. I still see myself as the "fat kid," the "slow one," the "non-athlete" and I think that's the barrier that I really need to work on breaking down. I'm imperfect... and I need to come to terms with the fact that it's okay to not fit into a particular mold... that I need to be happier with myself, and see the accomplishments that I have achieved, instead of focusing on the failures. I'm just hoping that this comes sooner rather than later, because self-disappointment is an unhappy place to be.

The past 6 months have been a whirlwind of training and racing. However, it has been in the last month or so when I had the realization that I need to really take myself seriously as an "athlete" - dare I actually call myself an athlete? I've always just thought of athletes as tiny, muscular, fast... three things which I am not... but participate in the athletic events - that I do. And I love it. I often joke that I'm a triathlete, because I'm "trying to be an athlete" but really, my secret (and now not-so-secret) desire is that I continue to improve and can just blow my old times and goals out of the water.

I am not fast. I don't have a particular sport of the three that I truly excel at. I'm a decent biker, and alright swimmer...and well, I can run...sort of. But I do love the rush of the adrenaline, the excitement, the lifestyle that is associated with racing and the triathlon community... so I keep trucking.

My goals are to be faster, stronger, better - in all three disciplines. And I know I can do it, I just need to get everything dialed in... I need to learn how to get out of my own head and push myself as hard as possible. I need to find confidence in myself and my own abilities, and not allow for my insecurities to get in my way.

I am my own worst enemy. In sports, my head reigns over my heart. My heart is fully comitted, fully in the race, but smoetimes my head is not. I need to learn to get over the voices in my head telling me to slow down or stop or "it hurts." I need to learn to trust in my own abilities...

Now I'm not going to publish my time goals just yet... but I have some very lofty ones that I'm trying to achieve. I just worry that I will fail, and disappoint myself. And others. Two of my biggest fears in life - failure and disappointment.

I know the next 7 weeks of training are going to hurt... they are going to rule my life...and I am probably going to cry at some points. But they will all be worth it in the end - as I cross that finish line... hopefully, at some time around __:__ (to be shared later)

And to Jax, Bryan, my husband (and my other friends/supporters) - thank you for pushing me, for encouraging me, for believing in me... even when I have a hard time doing that myself.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Rock and Roll Half....

Well... I picked a goal. (A very lofty one at that) and failed. But, I think I'm okay with this failure. I had picked a goal that would have required that I shave 13 minutes off of my previous PR for a half marathon....and nearly 17 minutes off of my last half marathon, which was Carlsbad, in January....

So I suppose I should be thrilled with 2:11:06... (my time at Carlsbad was 2:15:52) and I should keep pushing myself to achieve a sub-2 hour half marathon... which I really do hope I can achieve in December, at the Rock and Roll Las Vegas 1/2 Marathon.

Race day was far from what I had hoped or planned. The horn sounded, signaling that we begin running... my feet felt light, I was off to a good start. My goal was to maintain a 9:05 for the entire race and I was comfortably running 8:45 or less. I thought "wow, maybe I can do this!!" My husband at my side, good music in my ears... I was unstoppable. Around mile 2.5, Jason backed off (he hadn't trained enough and didn't want to try to keep pushing his pace... but I am so proud of him for doing it and trying!!)

The race course was different this year, and we circled around (and up and down) Balboa Park... Okay, not what I was expecting, but whatever... then we hit the 163 prior to going into downtown... Oh crap... this means they added more of the crazy angled 163...not fun. I tried to maintain my pace through the sideways road and up and down the hills. My heart rate shot up, though I didn't have it as a field on my monitor, but I could feel it - I thought it was going to explode!! SO I slowed down a bit, regulated my breathing, tried to will my heartrate to slow itself down... I finally got to the top of what I thought would be the last "hill" and saw some handcyclists flying down the hill, yelling "watch out" and then it happened - one of the cyclists slipped and skidded and ran right into a runner. He went flying, and crumpled on the ground, dazed and bleeding... right in front of me!! I started to tear up, but kept running.

My pace settled around 9:10, but I figured that I would probably be okay since I had been running faster at the beginning... and then it happened - I realized I really needed to use the restroom. I tried to ignore it, to will it away, but I had no choice but to stop. Dripping with sweat and my heart beating in my chest, I found a bathroom (right before the off-ramp onto Friar's road) and after I was finished, got really nauseous and proceeded to puke. Not sure if it was my heartrate, or the awful smell of that porta-potty that did it... or that I had just been pushing myself... Me? Running until I puked? Wow...

So the race continued, and I realized that ther was absolutely no way that I was going to be able to achieve my goal time, but knew that I absolutely had to (for myself) beat my current PR (which, by the way, was held at AFC half marathon, at which the first 4 or so miles are downhill) and so I continued a steady pace, trying to re-hydrate, re-fuel, and get back into the groove.

Jax had made us a "get moving" playlist, and I tried to just settle into the music and ignore everything around me. Funny thing looking back - I don't remember most of the race. I mean, had I been running with my eyes closed? Perhaps.

Running up and down Morena Blvd was awful. I really hated that part of the course.... though was extremely excited to hit Tecolote, and just SEE the finish line. I looked down at my Garmin and panicked... my feet started pounding the pavement, my heart beating in my chest... I push through until the finish chute and just sprint as fast as I could (per my garmin, my max pace was 5:23, and I'm assuming this occurred at the finish line) until I hit the mat. Success!! Well, sort of... my final time was 2:11:06 and my garmin said I had run 13.34 miles... which averages to 9:56/mile, which I should be happy with.

I stumble down the finish chute and there's Jax!! She gives me a hug, shows me her watch - 1:49 -- she DID IT!!! So proud of her!! I look at my own garmin and realize my average heart rate was 184 with a max of 238!! No wondeer I had felt like crap. We grabbed our stuff and waited for the rest of our friends/family to finish.

So many people PR'd today!! I am so proud of all of them... especially Jax for hitting her goal time ON THE MONEY... she has always been such a source of inspiration and support for me, and I would not be where I am today without her constant encouragement and help!! I am also very proud of my husband for completing his third official half marathon and not feeling horrible at the end...and Bobbie for hitting a new PR as well... and Nathan... for doing an insane brick on Saturday then ROCKING the run on Sunday... and Katie...and Randi... and everyone else who did it - you guys are all amazing.

I would also like to thank my coach, Bryan, for daring me to set goals and to push for them.

Am I bummed out - kind of. Am I horribly discouraged - not really. I supposed I hadn't exactly thought through the magnitude of cutting about a minute per mile off of my run time... and considering that when I started running in October 2008, I ran 13 or 14 minute miles, for SHORT runs, I'll settle a sub-10 minute per mile half marathon. But I'll get you yet, sub-2 hours... oh yes, I'll get you yet.

Friday, June 4, 2010

goal setting

I have always been afraid to set goals for myself... simply because of the fact that I fear failure... so here I am... 2 nights before the half marathon, and I'm terrified. Not because I think that I will fail at the race, terrified because I'm not sure if I will be able to accomplish it....but you know what - I am going to dare to achieve something....

Do you want to know what my half marathon goal time is?

Well... do you?



Should I?

Can I?

If I can't do it, are you going to laugh at me?

I'm going to try....................

Ok here goes....


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

miles to go before I sleep

My best friend, Jax, made a blog today.... and much like me, we both seem to seek the same thing in writing these blogs... perhaps self discovery... realizations, actualizations, etc... I think that writing is one of the best forms of release and understanding... and maybe, just maybe.... we will find the answers we are looking for.

I was originally going to write my blog about triathlons and training (since that seems to be 95% of what I spend my time doing these days... but Jax reminded me that we are far more complex than just our passion for triathlon and athleticism... so here goes nothing... a journal about me, myself, and I... my life, my fears, and my accomplishments...and hopefully - self discovery.