"Happiness does not come from doing easy work but from the afterglow of satisfaction that comes after the achievement of a difficult task that demanded our best." - Theodore I. Rubin

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Good times :)

AHHHH tonight at midnight I get to see my favorite girls from Sex and the City in their second movie and I am sooooo excited!! I met Kristin Davis in NYC a month ago and she was so nice and great to talk to. She told me all about their appearances and events they had to do for the movie and watching the preview/trailer makes me ecstatic to see it. :) :)

Training has been pretty good and I have been really great with my core and strength work 6 days per week. I love blasting music and getting it done every day for an hour. My body is gonna look amazing when it's time to hit the beach in Cabo in July with my girls!! :) :)

I rode Lemmon for the fourth time this past Sunday and it was great. It was really fun to listen to my music and get up the mountain just as fast as I did the third time, and this time there were BAD winds. On the descent a few times, the wind blew me clear across the lane of traffic and I was kinda scared I might get thrown over the guard rail on the side. Thank goodness I made it down safe and sound :) My Rachel cookie and coffee at the top were the best ever....the cookie was super warm, delicious and fresh. I saved half of it for my drive home. It was colder at the top of the mountain this time around compared to the last time I did it, yet I relaxed on the patio in the sun for a while and managed to stay somewhat warm. I am not sure when I will head to Tucson for the 5th climb, but probably in 2 weeks I'll go for it and try to climb a few minutes faster.

Everything outside of training continues to be fun and entertaining. I have many parties to go to each weekend with great people who are an absolute blast to be around, so that gets me excited. Last weekend I went to a pool party and we had a great time relaxing, drinking and watching beer pong tournaments. Unfortunately Mo Train and I couldn't run the table like we did last time, lol :) His partner was my bro and they lost....twice in a row, HAHA....I love playing....reminds me of all the good times I had at Duke with the incredibly fun student athletes.

2.5 more weeks of nothing but non-stop fun and I'm going to appreciate every day of it. These next few weeks I am also looking at my long range plan and goals for myself and what I truly want to focus on and train for, to be the best athlete I can be....we'll see what I come up with :)

Great quote: "Do one thing every day that scares you"- Eleanor Roosevelt

Friday, May 21, 2010

"Cross training"...

Do I want to bike lately? NO. Do I want to go stare at blue tiles on the bottom of a pool lately? NO. Do I want to blare music and beat the crap out of my brother’s speed bag??? YESSS ☺ This morning I asked him to fix the damn thing (he hit it too hard and for too long recently that he literally ripped part of out of the wall), haha I love it. I’m going to have him teach me how to hit it so that when I am frustrated, stressed or just want to get pumped up, I can go into our workout room and just go to town ☺

I’m almost done with week 3 of no running and I am just mad lately. I’m mad I decided to move a 40 lb. box last May, down the stairs, while barefoot, and proceeded to trip over one of my dogs and fall, landing on my heel. Within 2 weeks I had my injury that I’m currently trying to heal. I’m mad I decided to run the morning after I fell, and after only 5 hours of sleep. I’m mad I moved boxes up and down 3 flights of stairs in Oregon with old running shoes on my precious feet; my precious feet that must stay healthy for me to make a living. I’m mad I didn’t listen to my body the day I had to run almost 2 hours, the afternoon I arrived in Oregon after driving for 24 hours and about 3 of it was sleep. I’m mad and regretful of my stupid mistakes I made exactly one year ago. I wish I could go back and change them. I try to tell myself what my physical therapists at Endurance Rehab tell me…”Your bone spur could have already been there before all of that, and your injury could have happened eventually no matter what” ….I’m not convinced, clearly.

Who wants to hear about sad, depressing complaints though? No one…because truly NO ONE really cares if you are having a bad day, week, month or year. In fact I can think of a lot of people that would probably be happy to hear someone else is unhappy. Misery loves company. In the end, all you have is yourself anyway…it’s up to YOU to determine how your life goes…for the better or for the worse.

Biking doesn’t make me feel better. Swimming doesn’t make me feel better. However blasting my favorite rap music while driving and hopefully soon, hitting a speed bag until my hands ache, will make me feel better ☺ Spending time with fun, positive people always makes me feel better. My dogs that I love more than life itself make me feel better. The beach makes me feel better. Cooking and baking make me feel better. Going out dancing makes me feel better. Good food and good beer make me feel better. For the next 3 weeks and two days, I will be doing all of the above, (maybe some all combined into one trip somewhere) I’ll bike and swim only when I feel like it and when it’s time to put my feet back out on the roads, I know damn well I’ll feel muuuuuch better ☺

Wonderful quote and so applicable right now: “You become what you think about”. Damn straight. ☺

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

On the flip side...

I can’t even express in words how grateful I am to all the people who have supported me in athletics from when I was a tiny little super fast swimmer, short-lived soccer player, triathlete and of course forever a runner ☺ Doing triathlons and running professionally take up most of my time these days and part of my reward is the wonderful feeling of having a support crew (up to 7 of us once going to Cancun☺) sitting next to me on the plane or arriving from other destinations to simply….watch me RACE. Somehow they enjoy getting up early, dealing with me if I am tense and nervous and in a bad mood ;), running around on the course cheering (or hopping on subways all over the 5 boroughs of NYC), standing in the sun (or freeeeezing cold), pouring hurricane rains (Cancun) waiting…and waiting…and waiting…until I am finally done. Ironically, 3 of my biggest career highlights, winning the first ever ACC Women’s Individual title in Cross Country for Duke, winning my first National Championship in 2009 and recently winning the More Fitness Women’s Half Marathon in NYC, none of my family or incredibly special people in my life were there to see any of them. Of course there are great people on the sidelines cheering, friends or acquaintances, etc. yet none of my immediate family or anyone super close to me were there to watch and celebrate. Maybe it allowed me to channel all of my nerves and emotions into the task at hand…go for it, balls to the wall ☺

Not running or racing right now doesn’t fuel that super competitive, fierce desire I have to go out and really make my body hurt. Therefore, going to watch someone race gives me that excitement and I really love it. I got to watch my sister race about a week and a half ago; she had one good race and her second one was really motivating. She raced really strong and made moves when I yelled at her; it got me so pumped up ☺

A quote I saw recently that I really liked…”Winners are too busy to be sad, too positive to be doubtful, too optimistic to be fearful, and too determined to be defeated”

My pic: my awesome support crew from my half Ironman in California.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Almost two weeks down...4 more to go...

Much like dealing with any “stressful” situation in life, there are stages to gradually feeling normal or calm. With these 6 weeks (and hopefully not more) of time off from my running, I am sure I am going to go through a range of emotions. I am on day 11 of no running and once I go past the day 14 mark, it will be the second longest break from running, EVER. IN. MY. LIFE. The last time was over 3 years ago at Duke when I had a stress reaction in my femur and I couldn’t run for 6 weeks. I ended up coming back in time to run a very mediocre 10k at the NCAA championships, and two weeks later the WORST 10k of my life at the USA Track Championships in Indianapolis.

Right now I am in what I will call the “acceptance” phase of my time off, and sprinkle that with a very decreased level of motivation to do anything but have fun, not sleep much, drink a lot of beer and maybe swim and bike whenever I feel like it, HAHA J The only thing I am doing a good job of is my core and strength work about 6 days a week, even if it means waking up at 4:30 to get it done in time to go teach.

After the More Fitness NYC Half Marathon, I decided to go race the Bloomsday 12k in Spokane, Washington. My body was sore and tired every day during the week leading up to the race and I finally felt pretty good on my two mile run + strides the day before the race. During the race, I felt alright, yet it was much colder and windier than in 2009. My time was MUCH slower, 41:56 compared to 40:15 the year prior. I was able to manage 11th place overall and first American, so I was satisfied and I hope next year I can run faster again. It was frustrating to see that if I had run the same time (40:15) this year, I would have been about 5th overall! Haha However I had a great time in Spokane, just like last year. The hotel, hospitality suite, brunch, dinner, course tour and post-race food and drinks were fantastic. I love going to Bloomsday and I look forward to going again next year. J

The last time I was on Mr. Specialized was May 6th, when I went to Tucson again to climb Mt. Lemmon. I did the climb in 2:18 (with a strong headwind for a lot of it) and 1:04 on the descent. I was pretty happy considering the weather and the fact I hadn’t been on my bike in over a week, ha. Last time I swam was this past Monday, in a lap pool at a nice resort in Scottsdale, and then proceeded to relax and people watch afterward….clearly a very serious swim session ;)

Part of the reason I am not stressing too much about my lack of training the past two weeks is because I am teaching almost every day and I am just busy in general. I have not slept more than 6.5 hours the last 8 nights, and quite frankly I just don’t care that much. Now, starting in two weeks when I won’t be working for the summer (at least that’s my plan for now), then heck yes I will be working my booty off J I have written up almost all of my training for the next 21 weeks leading up to Kona and I plan to run in the Women’s USA Marathon Championships in NYC 4 weeks after Kona, so I have to balance everything well, and be ready to go hard again after Kona J Kona marathon goal: 2:50….NYC Marathon goal: 2:29 J I have a feeling after Kona I’ll think running a marathon alone will be easy as pie compared to after running in the lava fields J yet that’s coming from a runner….most triathletes I am sure would disagree with me, haha.

Weather in Phoenix lately has been heavenly!!! I just LOVE LOVE LOVE it….It’s definitely not as hot as last year at this time. Most days are in the 80’s and we had a few last week in the mid to upper 90’s. In the mornings though, it’s cool, in the 60’s, and as soon as teaching is done I can’t wait to get out there and train in the cooler temps J

One of my favorite quotes of all time that I try to live by every single day: "Life is too short to wake up in the morning with regrets. So love the people who treat you right, forget about the ones who don't, and believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it. Nobody said that it'd be easy; they just promised it'd be worth it."