Dear, Husband-Ironman Boulder

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I am one week out from my third Ironman. I’ve been in Boulder for a week to finish training and have some time to acclimate, as I wasn’t sure how the elevation would effect me. So far so good. After our first training day I text the hubster and said “what elevation?”  I feel so fortunate to have the ability to be here this early and fortunate enough to have my training partner-in-crime, my daughter and hubby alongside me. It’s been a long few months of training starting way back on January 6 of this year and I feel like I need to give a shoutout and some credit where credit is due.

I thought about adding up my total days of training and listing an attribute for each day but in all honesty I don’t even think that would be the icing on the cake…..G and P

Dear Husband,

Three Ironman triathlons and you are still by far my biggest fan.  I have loved the way from day one…during training my first triathlon that you just dove in to learn about this sport that I quickly fell in love with.  You have been by my side for every hard training day, sunburn, muscle cramp, sore IT band, restless night, cry-fest (there have been a few) melt down, and blister. You have cooked countless dinners when either I wasn’t home because of training, or was just simply too tired when I got home.  You have held my hands daily praying with me and for me.  You have maintained my bike as if it were brand new; cleaning, lubing the chain and airing my tires. You have made my nutrition bottles, loaded up coolers of ice for my recovery drinks.  You have done laundry when needed, picked up prescriptions, and played the roll of dad AND mom when needed. You have played race/training support for me on miserable hot training days bringing me ice, water and towels. You’ve rubbed my feet and sore muscles nightly for MONTHS. Your support is limitless and for not only one, but multiple Ironmans! Not to mention the countless other races that happen during the year.

RAINY TRAINING RUN!

RAINY TRAINING RUN!

You never even bat an eye at my crazy schemes, adventures and antics and when I talk about future races, you light up and encourage me onward.  You have traveled countless hours, through innumerable states, getting me from place to place to a myriad of races. Your love, joy and dedication is present to me every day.

Dear Husband,

Count the stars and that doesn’t come close to the adoration, love and respect I have for you.  I hold you in highest esteem for your willingness to encourage me in my passions.

Dear Husband,

How would I EVER do any of this without you?

I just thank you. I thank you for the man that you are, the father that you are and the husband you are to this crazy-mighty chick.

I hope you know how much I appreciate you. How truly grateful I am and how privileged I feel to have such support from you.

You have gone so far beyond Iron-mate for me.  I have learned that racing this distance takes more than just yourself. It’s takes a household.  It takes all hands on deck. It takes communication, determination and encouragement. It takes someone on occasion to kick you in the pants to get you out the door on days when you just do not want to.

Cruisin' around Hoi An, Vietnam

Cruisin’ around Hoi An, Vietnam

Dear Husband,

You bless me daily and I treasure you.

Dr Husband,

I cannot wait to fall into your arms after crossing the finish line on Sunday.

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Enjoying The Journey

It has been months since I posted a blog. It’s always in the back of my mind, with the greatest intentions to do so, and then…life. Gets. Moving.

I have had so much going on and have a lot to catch up on.

I am about 2.5 months out from Ironman Boulder, and while I’m excited for this inaugural event, I have days of feeling like I wish it were over. I think oftentimes when I read training blogs, whether it be for running marathons, or triathlons, Fondos or 5k’s, all I see is the fun side of training, which is awesome. This is not going to be a blog about the happier, fun, excitable part of training. Not this week.

This week I rolled into a rest week, which I was looking forward to but ended up having one of the worst weeks since starting this training. I’m not sure if it’s BECAUSE it’s a rest week, and kind of like a taper that makes you a little “off” but wow!! This week I cannot wait to kiss goodbye.

Vietnam

Vietnam

I just got back from Vietnam a couple of weeks ago (which is a WHOLE other post) just mourned the loss of our beloved Golden Retriever, Tucker and spent this last week with my daughter visiting our son in Los Angeles. It was a blast. Not restful AT ALL, but exactly what this mama was hoping for; a lot of sunshine, shopping, eating, and laughter! My kids are seriously the greatest. It is so exciting and enjoyable to see your kids grow up, get out on their own, and really soar. Our son moved in January and this is the first time I’ve been able to visit. LA is always so fun! I think we slept 10 hours over the period from Thursday-Sunday. And because of the modern miracle of flight, I was able to actually spend Mother’s Day with ALL three of our kids; leaving LA that morning, to come home with our youngest daughter for the afternoon/evening. I can say one thing (well maybe not just one) of my trip; I am SO glad I am in shape!! This thought lingered in my head during this trip. No sleep, over-indulging in food, and literally hitting

Running in Runyon Canyon

Running in Runyon Canyon

the ground running…I kept thinking how grateful I was to be in shape. It’s something I will never take for granted, and never let slip. My kids who are in their early 20’s are…well…. in their early 20’s, which means, we WENT HARD!! I was so thankful that I could easily keep up, as we were up early, and going to bed LATE…as in, some nights, we could’ve just stayed up and went straight to breakfast! We also hiked/ran Runyon which was incredible! And again, I thought….I am so happy to be able to do this!! Moral: Keep it up at any age!! You won’t regret it, but will if you let it go.

My last day with Tucker

My last day with Tucker

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These Kids!!

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Days Like This…Zuma Beach/Malibu, CA

Onto this week. A rest week for training that I was looking forward to. It’s. Been. Hard. It’s interesting how bad workouts can affect you. I called my training partner bawling on Tuesday. I had just come off of a horrible run, and was feeling so defeated.  You know the kind of day you are looking forward to and within minutes, all goes south?  I felt heavy, and like I was a new runner just starting out.  It was an easy run, that was a disaster!  She talked me off of the ledge. Only for me to do the same for her that very evening. At one point I thought, “we shouldn’t be training together (kidding) and good thing we have our breakdowns at different parts of the day or we’d never make it to race day ” I literally said to her “what am I doing? I don’t want to do this Ironman!” Hours later she says, “OK, if you’re out I’m out” Thankfully, my sobbing had subsided and I was back in a normal frame of mind at that point.

And we continued on….

Great training partners are crucial. No matter what! I have days that I am fine doing workouts alone, and even look forward to them. The solitude of a nice long run is indescribable. But some days….you need a partner, or a few. Because some days…you’re gonna fall without them. You’re going to tail spin unless they are there to set you straight. You’re going to sob, and second-guess yourself, and feel inadequate. You’re going to want to throw in the towel and give up. Hang up the wetsuit and running shoes and sell the bike. But then….in steps these “angels” and all is right with the World.

Yesterdays ride made up for my week of sadness and defeat. I met my training partner for a ride. She comes over as I’m preparing my bike with a little gift…Enjoy The Journey. She looks at me and says, “this may suck some days, but darn it, we are going to enjoy the crap out of it!” Greatest words ever spoken after a week like this!

We took off and soon ran into another friend who was out training. We stopped and chatted briefly, and took off on a great ride together! The sun was shining, it was quiet, aside from our chatter, and the woods smelled amazing along our route. We laughed and rode and just had an amazing ride. There is something so magical about training girlfriends. They are invaluable. They are so real. So authentic and solid. They are the ones that know and understand your peril and insecurities. You can be so vulnerable with them, because they GET it! They’ve been there. There’s no judgment. And the frankness you can share is unparalleled. These friends understand your tiredness, moodiness, your aching crotch, your food addictions (eat all the food now!) your blistered feet, your saddle sores, you dilemma with on course nutrition, your fear of open water, your irritability and frustration and they still love you anyway. They help you “embrace the suck.” They make you laugh, hold you up, hold you accountable and hold your bike when you pee. They allow you to wallow…but only for a short time. They allow you to cry it out, then wipe your tears, give you a slap on the butt and get you moving again.

So out of a bad training week, comes the silver lining. Everyone has bad days/weeks. Chose your friends and training partners wisely and it makes all the difference in the world. Because trust me…. they’re going to need you as much as you need them, and for me, I feel like it’s an integral part of my training. Sometimes, you just need loved on and a little reminder to Enjoy the Journey.

Gift From My Training Partner….great reminder!

Gift From My Training Partner….great reminder!

 

Starting to Goal-Dream

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I do not do New Years resolutions.  I just don’t and never have.  I guess maybe I have always missed the point, or have felt like I do not want to set myself up to fail.  Statistics are staggering on how many make resolutions and do not follow through.  The optimist in me, of course, is overjoyed at the ones that do their best at carrying them out and succeed.  I guess it seems silly to me to make these grand decisions instead of micro-decisions throughout the year.  I mean, we all change, everyday….so why not make mini decisions throughout your changing, daily life?  Why not adapt and learn as life carries you?

I do, however, set goals.  This happens year round, so I don’t necessarily feel that it is a “resolution” and being that it is now January 13th, I’ve kind of missed the window of opportunity in making them resolutions.  My goals change.  They change often and they make up a myriad of different situations.  As I sit and assess this coming year race wise, I have no choice but to make goals.  Which races to enter, how to train, do I change running shoes (again) how do I become faster, eat cleaner, and manage my time well during the training season?  Do I get a new bike, or is the one I have going to carry me through this race season (she’s a great bike)Unknown-2

Unknown-1Speaking of training….I am one week out from “officially” starting the training for my third Ironman.  Wow!  It’s exciting!  It makes me get these butterflies in my stomach like I am about to jump off of a cliff.  That feeling of exhilaration and nausea.  The sweaty palms, the tingly fingers.  I will be doing a 27-week training plan for this race.  I am hopeful that the cross-training that a triathlon provides through varying swim, bike and run days, will keep me injury free and not have the situation I was in this summer that took me out of my Fall marathon.  I am happy that I have learned over the years, that less is really more as far as training goes for me.  I mean, I trained for my last Ironman in 9 weeks (not advised) but it worked out, and I have the PR to prove it.  I started a sort of “weening into” training last week.  My coach gave me a 2-week warm up….”OH hello triathlon body…time to wake up!!”  I have to say, it has been nice to be back on a plan.  Not that I have been sitting on the couch for months, but I have definitely been more, shall we say, lenient, in my training.

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I am once again, looking forward to sweaty feet, tired muscles, stinky running shoes, helmet head, a chaffed bottom side (for a while…ok always)  visor hair, living in tri-gear, catching up on every movie on Netflix during trainer rides, napping, falling into bed completely used up physically from a hard training day, blisters, the squeeze of compression socks, a car that looks like I am living out of it, snaps on the head from my swim cap, goggle eyes, the foam roller (ok, that’s a lie) the Stick (ok, that’s an even bigger lie) and the fabulous perfume of chlorine!Unknown