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Riding the FART

October 19, 2011 Friends, Fun 1 Comment

 

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People Helping People

October 17, 2011 Friends No Comments

Everyone has a dream. It doesn’t have to be big or extravagant, but it is something you’ve always wanted to do or achieve or be or accomplish. You know, things like:

Walk on the moon.

Get out of the po-dunk town you grew up in.

Become an Ironman.

Speak Italian with the locals in Venice.

Grow tomatoes.

I’m working on making my Ironman dream come true. It’s something that will take a lot of hard work and sacrifices on my part, and on the part of all of you who are supporting me. People who offer encouraging words during the long training period and during the race. Friends who will understand when I say no to fun plans because my budget is tapped. Saints who let me eat the last slice of pizza after a hard training day. Children who miss nap time to cheer a girl on.

My friend Phil has a dream. He wants to be a film director. After high school, he achieved his degree in Film & Video Prodcution at CSU Long Beach (yep – the same place Steven Spielberg got his degree). His senior project won awards and got him interviews at the top studios in LA. But he needed a screenplay before they’d even consider him. Phil is a director, not a writer.

Alas, his dreams were put on hold. Phil found work that would support him and pay off his school loans. Life happened and, in seemingly no time, he was 40 and working as an IT manager instead of a film director.

Until now.

Earlier this year, Phil put up his own money to hire and direct a film crew for a documentary. Imminent Threat is a film about the emotional journey of a single SWAT team as they participate in an international training competition for emergency response services. Check out the trailer!

The entire film has already been shot. Phil’s next step is to hire the post-production professionals — editors, sound engineers, special effects — who will work with him to shape the 70+ hours of footage into the story he envisioned from the very beginning. THIS TAKES MONEY!

He’s working with Kickstarter* to raise the money. I’d like to ask you, my faithful readers, to help a guy see his dreams come true. It doesn’t take much — the difference in forgoing that Starbucks run tomorrow, bringing your own lunch to the office, or buying the cheap bottle of wine at Trader Joe’s. Each individual’s small contribution will add up to something big. Big = this guy’s dream.

$5. Seriously.

His goal is to raise $30,000 in the next 9 days. You guys know how I love a challenge. Let’s do this! Think of your own dream and how it would be so great to enlist the help of everyone you know and everyone I know and everyone the Internet knows to make it come true.

Ready? Set? Go!

Click here to learn more about Phil, this project, and Kickstarter — and to donate! Feeling even more generous? Tell all your friends!

* NOTE ABOUT KICKSTARTER: If he doesn’t reach his goal, you aren’t charged.

 

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Insignificant Kindnesses

September 26, 2011 Friends, Fun 3 Comments

When I talk with my girlfriends, each of us knows it’s a safe environment to be honest. And while we don’t let it turn into a total bitch-fest, we certainly welcome the opportunity to vent about the goings-on in our lives. We’ll hit the high and low points on work, lament at our failure to stop eating carbs, and then the talk inevitably turns to all the wrong-doings our respective husbands/boyfriends/lovers have committed.

Can you BELIEVE he rinsed his dish and then left it in the sink?!? I mean, the dishwasher is RIGHT THERE. It’s like he’s TRYING to pick a fight!

(The above example is for dramatization purposes only and nothing I would ever think or say, GREG.)

Sometimes, depending on the infraction, we skip over the work drivel and get right to the guy stuff. In these cases, it isn’t things like a dirty dish left in the sink. It’s things like … well … bigger than that. Remember the “safe environment” I talked about? I’m not going to sell anyone out!

In all honesty, venting is important. And in many cases, venting to friends just to get validation is exactly what we SHOULD do. But it’s a slippery slope. Next thing you know, the ventee chimes in and then a third bottle of wine is opened and everyone thinks of more wrong-doings just to one-up the other on how horrible her significant other is. It’s a slippery slope indeed.

Here’s what rarely never happens: recounting the nice things our guys do.

Why not? Is it because Misery loves company and Happiness is a bitch who is destined to a life of solitude? Is that true??

The worst of it is that it’s like we’re all on the lookout for someone to be mean to us. Like we are just dying to tell our friends how some asshole went first at the 4-way stop even though it was clearly my turn and I got home 5 seconds later as a result. OH THE HUMANITY!

I am starting a movement. Something that celebrates the insignificant kindnesses we impart on one another. We all have the opportunity — nay, RESPONSIBILITY — to not only do kind things to and for one another, but to tell other people about them.

Think about it. If we spent the same amount of time talking about the nice things that our loved ones are doing for us — seemingly insignificant things! — rather than bitching about the infractions (which are often unintended or misinterpreted), we would be much happier people individually and collectively.

Taking it one step further, what if we spent our time looking for the good?!

Let me give you some examples from my life — things Greg has done for me that I have noticed but didn’t give him proper credit for:

  • Cleaned my bike chain. He didn’t tell me he was going to do it or had done it. I just got on to ride the next time and it was squeaky clean and well-oiled.
  • Unloaded the dishwasher. I hate this task. He did it while I was sleeping, without waking me up with the clanking of the dishes.
  • He used my car for a small errand and filled it with gas before bringing it back.

See? Insignificant things. Household things. Things that would not make or break any relationship. Except, each one gave me pause and I was grateful. I thanked him for these things, but they’re not the kinds of things I would bring up to girlfriends in a vent-fest. AND YET THEY SHOULD BE. If I’m going to bitch about dirty dishes in the sink, I should rave about clean bike chains.

I leave it to you, dear readers, to look for the good in those around you. And beyond that, look for reasons to be insignificantly kind. This just might catch on.

I would love to hear of the insignificant kindnesses you have overlooked and/or those that you have imparted on others. My biggest wish is that you SPREAD THE WORD.

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Retirement Planning Fail

September 3, 2011 Friends, Fun 4 Comments

I fell in love with Ashland when I was there a couple of weeks ago. The community is small enough to be quaint and large enough to have the amenities I’ve become accustomed to (though, sadly, the nearest Trader Joe’s is an hour away). All of us girls fell in love with it, actually, and we began making plans to retire there when the time comes. It just seems like the perfect place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the Bay Area without losing the culture and recreation.

Drinking wine = Recreation + Culture

Southern Oregon is an up-and-coming wine region and we sampled the wares at a few Rogue Valley wineries on Sunday. Much to our delight, the chardonnays in Oregon are not oak-y and buttery like the ones from California. The pinot noirs are also fuller and richer. We were in heaven!

As we chatted with the winemakers during our tastings, I began to rethink the retirement strategy. You see, these fine people had the same idea we had: they came to Ashland to retire. But the land they bought came with grape vines. Or they fell in love with the area and wanted to be part of the culture. Or someone gave them some grapes and they figured they’d try their hand at winemaking. Or whatever. And here they are, pouring wine for strangers on weekends and otherwise working their asses off year-round to produce good wine. I realize there is a truth in “do what you love and it isn’t work,” but I’m pretty sure the only people I want to pour wine for on weekends are myself and my friends.

I need to find a new place to retire to. What’s your plan?

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Girls Gone Wild

August 23, 2011 Friends, Fun 4 Comments

I visited Ashland, Oregon over the weekend. It was me and three of my girlfriends having a wonderful time. We ate too much. We drank too much. We developed crushes on a very young man.

Said young man was guiding us in a raft down the Rogue River. He was so professional in handling the reservations and safety talk and transportation. He was so knowledgeable about the river and wildlife and how to guide a boat. He was so adorable as he smiled but did not engage in the jokes we were making about my poor swimming suit choice, which is evidenced in this photo:

You can either call me Mrs. Robinson or Tits Malone.

 

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Barb’s Race Recap – Run

August 7, 2011 Fitness, Friends, Fun 2 Comments

This is the finale in a 4-part series. I’m glad you’re still with me!

Part 1 – Pre-race + Nutrition
Part 2 – Swim + T1
Part 3  – Bike + T2

I kept the title of this post simple, but considered several alternatives as I was writing it:

Welcome to My Pain Cave
When A Plan Falls Apart
Kill Me Now
WTF Happened?

After a surprisingly good swim and stellar bike, I just needed to tough it out for ~2 more hours and I’d have this race in the bag. I was easily on track to meet my stretch goal of finishing in 5:45 and I was ready to get it over with. I hoped my legs would to spring to life for the run as they had for the bike, but I had my doubts.

The run course is an out-and-back with a dirty trick thrown in. We ran out 4.35 miles and then had to run all the way back through the transition area only to turn around and go back out on the same course for 2.2 more miles. That turnaround was at the top of the first big hill, naturally. We covered the same ground four times before finally crossing the damn finish line. It seems very hilly when you’re running it, but my Garmin data says it has only 338 feet of elevation gain. By contrast, the Wildflower 10K course has 556 feet of elevation gain in half the distance.

I suppose the run setup is good from a spectator’s standpoint because they get to see us run by so many times. For the athletes, it is mentally defeating. In fact, I will never do Barb’s Race again for this very reason. I will do Vineman 70.3 instead because that run course is one big loop.

My legs were cramping from the get-go. I’ve never had my quads cramp like that and it concerned me. My stomach was also cramping and I hoped the PREV I chugged in T2 would kick in (it did). I stopped to use the bathroom at Mile 2 just to make sure my cramps weren’t going to produce anything, and to pee. It was touch and go on if my legs would work after sitting down… I lost 90 seconds there, but the peace of mind was worth it.

Smiling for the camera

I walked a lot. I’m actually surprised my average pace (10:35) is not slower because I walked so much. I obviously don’t know how to pace myself. When I was running, I was running fast. Too fast. So then I’d have to walk more. There were a lot of people walking and that “everyone’s doing it” dynamic is dangerous. When you get to this part of the race, the mental game really begins. Your body will do what you need it to do, but your mind has to go there first.

Because we were going back and forth so many times, it did give me an opportunity to see Caryn a few times. I kept hoping she’d catch me on the run so we could commiserate on how horribly it was going… But she was 12 minutes behind me out of the water and 10 minutes behind me on the bike, so running/walking together was not going to happen.

The volunteers at the water stations were fantastic. Everyone was very encouraging and we were best friends by the time I passed by the fourth time… I kept my sense of humor and made jokes about walking and asking if anyone had beer instead of Gatorade. I had a couple of glasses of Coke on my last loop through and it tasted surprisingly good. Usually it’s too sweet for me, but the carbonation and sugar hit the spot.

I got to 12.1 miles and looked at my Timex. If I could run ONE WHOLE MILE in 12 minutes, I could finish the race in under 6 hours. I knew my cheering section was right around the corner. Right around the corner from them was the finish line.

Welcome to my pain cave

I finished in 6:02:15.

WTF happened?? I mentally broke down. That’s all there is to it. My usual run pace is somewhere in the 8:30 range and I couldn’t even shuffle at 12 minute pace for one mile?! This is infuriating to me and explains the overall race disappointment that I have felt all week. My official run time was 2:22:01. *sigh*

Greg ran alongside me for the last quarter-mile or so and was with me at the finish line. What a guy! Immediately after crossing the finish line, my left foot and toes cramped up with charlie horses and I hobbled over to a shady area to sit down. I took my shoes off and have vowed to never wear them for anything longer than a 10K. In addition to the cramping, the bottoms of my feet were burning for the last half of the run and the tops felt like they were bruising.

My cheering section and coach came over to congratulate me. I shed a few tears about Argus and made for the food tent. It wasn’t long before Caryn was crossing the finish line and we could compare notes.

All in all, I raced well. There were a lot of lessons that I learned and will apply to my training for next year. In the meantime, I’m basking in the off-season and not feeling even the least bit guilty!

I’ve posted all pictures on my Flickr site. Thanks for coming along on the journey!

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Barb’s Race Recap – Bike + T2

August 7, 2011 Fitness, Friends, Fun No Comments

This is Part 3 in a 4-part series.

Part 1 – Pre-race + Nutrition
Part 2 – Swim + T1

BIKE
The bike course is a 56-mile loop that winds through three famous wine regions in Sonoma County — Russian River Valley, Dry Creek Valley, and Alexander Valley. The scenery is just stunning. I had to keep reminding myself to look around and enjoy it rather than just looking at the pavement a few feet in front of me.

Caryn and I pre-rode the bike course in June and that provided a lot of insight. There are a couple of tight turns to navigate and I was able to set my expectations on the terrain. The first five miles are flat getting out of Guerneville, but the rest of the route is rolling. There is one big climb (Chalk Hill) that happens at Mile 45, so you’ve got to save your legs for that. The roads are pitted with potholes and I adjusted my tire pressure to offset this. When we rode it in June, there was a lot of broken glass and loose gravel on the roads, but they thankfully had them swept before the race. There is on-course support at Miles 18, 28, and 40 — water, Gatorade, and bananas are offered.

I was able to settle into my aero bars and keep a steady pace until turning onto Chalk Hill Road at Mile 41. My average speed never dropped below 19 mph until the climb at Mile 45. My race goal for the bike was to average 18 mph and finish in 3:05, so I felt really confident the entire time I was out there. My heart rate was under control and my legs had a lot of fire in them. I ended up averaging 18.8 mph overall and finishing in 3:00:12.

Greg and Jeff parked at a friend’s house at Mile 38 to spectate. I saw the van and gave a holler to let them know I was coming. I knew I was ahead of schedule and they’d miss me otherwise… Greg’s poor spectating skills are often joked about (as is my modesty in cheering for them to cheer for me). Paula and Kevin came down in time to see Caryn go by. They made signs!

I knew I was going to be somewhere around 10 minutes ahead of Caryn out of the water. But she’s a faster cyclist than I am and I knew she’d be chasing me down. When my average speed started to drop climbing Chalk Hill, I knew she’d catch me. I kept waiting for her to catch me. She never did!

I was prepared to pee on the bike if I needed to, but the urge wasn’t there. I did start to have stomach cramps around Mile 20, which concerned me. I was able to go to the bathroom early that morning, but it wasn’t what I’d call “normal” and I had a feeling things were going to be off because I had eaten dinner so late… I had a plan. I had packed a vial of PREV with my run gear at T2 and I willed myself to remember to drink it as soon as I got off the bike. I hoped it would kick in fast enough to thwart any GI issues that were brewing.

Ryan turned me on to PREV and I am forever grateful. I used it once before when my stomach started to revolt after a hot and hilly training session. It worked within minutes to quell my upset stomach that day, and I was glad I had planned ahead to bring it on race day.

There were tons of spectators on Windsor Road watching the bikers come in and the runners go out. My cheering section was there — Tara, Addison, Mike, and Tiff — and it felt great knowing they were there for me. The tri club was situated nearby and the two groups joined forces as I came through the chute to the dismount area.

The clouds were just beginning to break up, but it wasn’t unbearably hot. In fact, race conditions were perfect!

T2
My Timex watch was tracking overall race time and I felt great looking down to see 3:37 coming into T2. I knew I had bought myself a lot of time for the run and the minute I took those first steps off my bike, I knew I’d need it.

The distance between the bike dismount and our transition area was far! My legs didn’t want to work and I felt like I was going to fall running on the pavement in my cycling shoes. Also, there were surprisingly few people spectating in the transition area. The whole thing was kind of surreal. Since Caryn didn’t catch me on the bike, I kept looking around for her in the transition area. I really wanted to run with her!

Official T2 time: 4:25

Click here for the gritty run details!

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Barb’s Race Recap – Swim + T1

August 7, 2011 Fitness, Friends, Fun 2 Comments

This is Part 2 in a 4-part series.

You can read Part 1 here.

SWIM
The swim and T1 take place at Johnson’s Beach in Guerneville. Caryn and I got there with plenty of time to set up for our 8:14 AM start time. I think we arrived somewhere around 7:30. Of note, they do not assign you a transition spot on the rack by number (as many races do). This is a first come, first served situation. In general, I feel like the triathlete community is very accommodating of one another, but elbow room in the transition area can be a bit touchy (literally).

The water temperature was 72* — warmer than the outdoor temperature, so it was nice getting in! This race had an in-water start, which was a first for me. Once our wave (purple swim caps) was invited into the water, the mass of us plunged in and got in a few strokes to warm up. I adjusted my goggles and made my way to the far right. My tendency is to drift left as I swim, so I wanted to be as far right as possible.

We were swimming in the Russian River, which does have a slight current. I can’t say that I actually felt it as I was swimming against it, but it was there mentally. Knowing that I’d be swimming with the current at the turnaround kept me going hard. I would love to see a GPS diagram of the course I took on this swim because I was all over the place! The worst of it was that the waves were not started far enough apart (in my opinion), so I was swimming into athletes from the three waves ahead of me.

I refused to look at my watch until the turnaround. I knew it was more than halfway from the finish and I didn’t want to psych myself out before that. As I rounded the second buoy, I looked and my time was 17:57. I was so stoked! I knew I’d finish in less than 35 minutes at that pace! The traffic thinned out and I could swim longer between needing to sight the buoys and other swimmers.

As I was crossing under the pedestrian bridge, I purposely looked up to see if Jeff and Greg were there. Yep! Spectating a swim race is very difficult, so I thought I’d make it easier for them — I hollered and waved! That way I knew they’d get good pictures of me (and know when I came out of the water). Can someone tell me how horrible my form is (and how to correct it)? I’m on the left.

I was so thrilled when I stepped up on the ramp and looked down at my watch. 32:35! (Official time is 32:43) I honestly couldn’t believe I swam that fast, especially considering my shoulder injury and being unable to swim for 6 weeks during my training. I was ecstatic, and my coach was there at the swim exit yelling my name. Loved it!

T1
Barb’s Race was running simultaneously to the Full Vineman Ironman. The benefit of this was wetsuit strippers! I haven’t ever taken part in this before, so we walked over to see it happening prior to our race start so we’d know what to do. Basically:

  1. Come out of the water and make your way up the ramp. For me, I got my wetsuit unzipped and off my arms, down to waist level.
  2. Make eye contact with a stripper (!!).
  3. Lay down on your back and throw your legs in the air. Your stripper will yank your wetsuit off your legs and hand it to you.

As I ran to my transition area, I rolled my wetsuit up, tucking my swim cap, goggles, and ear plugs into it. Everything had to be stuffed back into the T1 Transport Bag, so I wanted to be efficient. The transition area is a gravel parking lot. Fortunately, the aisles along side the racks were carpeted. The areas in between the racks were not, so it was critical to have a towel for brushing off your feet before stuffing them into your shoes.

I quickly got into my socks and shoes, sprayed a liberal amount of sunscreen on my face, and got my helmet and sunglasses on. There is a steep-ish hill coming out of the transition area onto the street, so I was sure I had my bike in its lowest gear as to not drop my chain or fall over within the first few yards of the bike portion.

Official T1 time: 2:54

Jeff was there snapping photos and it felt great to be on the bike. Best of all, the skies were still overcast!

Click here for Part 3!

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Barb’s Race Recap – Part 1

August 7, 2011 Fitness, Friends, Fun 3 Comments

Rather than drag one post out, I’m going to break it up into sections and provide a little more detail with each — learnings, interesting tidbits about the course, and the like.

Overall, Barb’s Race was a success. I spent the week with a black cloud hanging over the whole race because I missed my goal time by 2 minutes. Oh, and because my dog died. I appreciate everyone who came to watch me race, everyone who has asked me about it, and everyone who has congratulated me on a job well-done. I am a well-supported athlete!

Everyone (including the baby) was sporting a 'Team Molly' shirt.

I have several explanations excuses for missing my goal time. One of them is that I chose to use a porta-potty rather than gut it out (or worse) once I started running. But the bottom line is that my legs weren’t cooperating on the run and my mind wasn’t strong enough to get a compelling message to them.

Triathlon is a mental game. I have known this all along, but it has never been so in-my-face as it was last Saturday afternoon.

PRE-RACE
The packet pick-up process was a little cumbersome, but maybe that’s because we were there early. The race organizers set up a mandatory orientation meeting for all participants. This lasted roughly 30 minutes and was only marginally helpful. It was probably more helpful for first-time triathletes, but I honestly think it was a tactic to offset having a zillion people in the packet pick-up room at once. This was also ineffective. The meetings ended at 12:30 and packet pick-up didn’t open until 1 PM. Most people didn’t go to the expo to buy stuff, they stood in a long line for 30 minutes and tapped away on their phones…

Once we got back to our house, I went to work getting everything ready for the race. This was uncanny behavior for me. I usually screw around and/or socialize and/or have a glass of wine . But for some reason, I wanted everything done ahead of time while it was fresh in my mind. And thank goodness, given how the night was hijacked! I was so thankful I had done everything with a clear head and knew I had what I needed!

Race number: sticker for bike, sticker for helmet, sticker for T1 transport bag, bib for race belt
Nutrition: see below
Gear: tri top + shorts, HR monitor, timing chip, flip flops, Wet Ones, wetsuit, goggles, Body Glide, ear plugs, swim cap, Timex watch (for overall timekeeping), transition towel, sunscreen, race belt, bike, helmet, sunglasses, socks, cycling shoes, Garmin FR405 (for bike + run splits)

Argus got sick around 6:30 PM and died around 7:30, I think. I’m not really sure what time it all happened; time seemed to stop. We left Monte Rio to take him to an emergency vet clinic in Santa Rosa just as it was getting dark and arrived back at the house around 10 PM. Greg and I mindlessly ate dinner (I was nervous how this would affect my bathroom abilities at 6 AM, but needed to eat) and went to bed. I slept restlessly all night.

NUTRITION
I changed my race day nutrition from what I did at Wildflower. I know that using gels (like GU, ClifShot, AccelGel) are effective during a race, but they really upset my stomach. Therefore, I never train with them. I decided to use “real food” nutrition during this race, similar to what I do during my long training sessions.

Pre-race Dinner: Homemade chicken parmesan + whole wheat pasta and sauce + red wine. I ate smaller portions than I would have earlier in the night, given I was eating so late. Some people are real sticklers about drinking booze during training and especially before a race. I’m just not that hard core. I train with wine. I race with wine. (See also: my dog just died.)
Breakfast:
Leftover pasta + sauce, Chobani lowfat yogurt cup, 12 oz. low-cal FRS
Pre-swim: 5-Hour Energy shot. This was a race day gamble; I’ve never taken one of these before. It’s mostly B-vitamins and some caffeine and the packaging promises it won’t cause a crash at 5:01. Living on the wild side!
Bike: I brought two hydration bottles, one with plain water and one with full-calorie FRS. I train with this and like it. I purposely used two throw-away bottles in case I needed to swap one out at the on-course water stations. I ended up drinking most of my FRS and about half of my water. For food, I packed one-half PB+banana sandwich and four almond butter-filled dates. These were packed in separate snack-size Ziploc bags and stored in my bento box. I tried eating half of the sandwich around Mile 18, but I struggled to chew it and get it down so ended up throwing it out. I relied on three of the dates (Mile 19, Mile 38, Mile 51) and believe they did the job for me — protein + carbs and easy-ish to eat. They were a little messy getting them out of their baggy, but I think I can rig something better next time.


Run: I brought a handheld water bottle with Nuun with me and this helped tremendously to replace much-needed electrolytes. On the course, I took water at almost every station on the way out and none on the way back (first lap). On the second lap, I drank two cups of full-calorie Coke and loved it. This was a pleasant surprise. I also had a couple of cups of ice. I was having some GI issues, so the only thing I ate was peach slice someone gave me at the turnaround point. It was delicious.
Post-race: I was surprisingly hungry after the race — something that never happens because my stomach is usually so upset. I had none of that this time!!  They had good food at the finish line. The pasta salad would have been inedibly salty had I not just finished a race, but it was pretty good because I was salt-deprived. I ate a few bites of grilled chicken breast and four pieces of fresh melon. I snagged cookies for my cheering section. Cocktails followed a few hours later.

Click here for Part 2 (where I actually talk about the race)! Thanks for reading!

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Barb’s Race – Goal Setting

July 29, 2011 Fitness, Friends, Fun 2 Comments

Greetings from Sonoma County! We arrived yesterday and enjoyed some of the wares this valley has to offer. That’s definitely one benefit of choosing this destination for our “race-cation!” We rented a house with Jeff and Caryn and are staying three nights. It’s set in the woods along a small creek and it’s a very tranquil setting to contemplate what’s ahead of us.

It’s time to set some race goals:

I’LL BE SATISFIED: Finish under 6 hours
I’LL BE ECSTATIC: Finish in 5:45

Here’s how that’s going to break down:

SWIM: Finish in 35 minutes.
Last year’s 1.2 mile swim time was 36:39, so I would like to meet/beat that.

BIKE: Average 18 mph and finish in 3:05
This is a tough bike course and it’s going to be hot tomorrow, so this is a stretch goal.

RUN: I’m giving myself 2 hours on the run (average pace 9:16 m/m)
We drove the run course today and it’s hilly. I am planning on dying on the run, so I hope this is conservative enough. I don’t want to sandbag it… but I want to give myself some leeway to totally suck.

TRANSITIONS: These will have to be under 5 minutes for me to reach my goal.
T1 may take a bit longer than in other races because we have to stuff all of our stuff (including wetsuit) into a plastic bag that will be transported over to the race finish. T2 should be quick.

It’s going to be a tight race with those splits. Greg put new tires on my bike and my legs are definitely fresh. Every workout this week has left me wanting more. I’ll give it my best!

Here we are after setting up our running stuff in T2:

I think we look ready, don’t you? Immediately after this was taken, we stood in ridiculous lines to get our packets, timing chips, and shirts. This gave me ample opportunity to people-watch. At events like this, most people are wearing gear from past event that indicate to other competitors they are badasses. In one case, a portly fellow was wearing full-length compression tights with a billowy shirt over it. In a word, he looked ridiculous. But I bet his legs will feel great tomorrow and it will all be worth it…

Back at the cabin now, I’ve got my gear all ready to go for tomorrow. My nutrition is packed, my gear is laid out, and dinner will be early. I’m enjoying a glass of wine on the deck as I write this. Ahhhh. This is how a race-cation should be!

Thanks to everyone for the well-wishes along the way. I hope to make us all proud with my performance tomorrow!

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