Moving in the Right Direction…and a Quazi Race Report!


Well things are finally looking up! As of my last update, my foot was still quite painful and I was still unable to run, but I’m very happy to report that things seem to be improving! I had a cortisone injection on both sides of my foot about 3 weeks ago and literally woke up pain free the next day for the first time in a year! It is the most wonderful feeling to not hobble out of bed in the morning or to have to take “breaks” when walking for any period of time to rest my hurting foot! I realize that cortisone is not a prolonged treatment method and that there are still underlying “issues” with my foot, but it’s been a huge relief just to be out of pain, even if it is may only be temporary.

That said, I’ve been “cleared” to run so long as it doesn’t hurt! I’ve been very smart (yes, me!) and haven’t run more than 4 miles at a time (once), with most runs of just 2-3 miles. I’ve done some longer walk / jogs but have generally just kept on with my normal “injured” workout schedule. As much as I’d like to get back to racing and full-on training, I’m hesitant to do too much too soon until I see how this cortisone will do in the longer term vs. just a few weeks. Some people get one injection and never deal with the issue again…others have pain return as soon as the cortisone wears off. I’m praying I’m a “one and done” and if so, I’ll be kicking myself for years to come that I didn’t get the injection before Cabo. :-/ What do they say…”hindsight is always 20/20”.

“Training” wise, I’ve been doing a few longer rides on the weekends for fun with good groups of people and it’s been nice to see my fitness on the bike returning much faster than I anticipated. It has been great to just ride and go along with whatever everyone else is doing. I hate being the selfish one who has intervals and such to do as I was in the time leading up to Cabo. During the week, I’ve been sticking with some time on the spin bike, elliptical, stepmill, a swim here and there (not nearly enough), Body Pump / strength workouts, and have recently been back to some more intense workouts like athletic conditioning. All in all, I feel content with my current level of fitness and it’s been a nice break to step away from hard core training, the ups and downs of racing, and the intensity of that lifestyle, and just enjoy an active life!

A few athletes that I coach decided to do Lake Logan Olympic in Canton, NC this past weekend. This is a beautiful, “friendly” course, so I thought it’d be a fun first Olympic distance race for some of my less-experienced clients…including my sister! I had planned all along to go and spectate the event, but had been teetering for a few weeks on whether I wanted to participate in some fashion. I felt very strong last weekend on a ~90 mile ride and decided on Monday that I may as well register for the “Aquabike” event. If I was going to drive up there, get up at 4:30am to be at the race site, and be standing around for ~3+ hours, I might as well get a good workout in and still be done in time to cheer everyone on during the run! Obviously you can make any triathlon into a swim / bike event by just turning in your chip post bike ride, but if you know me, you know that would be really hard for me to do. This was actually a designated Aquabike event so I couldn’t pass it up.

Swim: 26:50 – 28th
Yep, confirmed, still slow but this was actually one of my best Olympic distance swims. Given I’ve swam about 8 times since March, I’m pretty pleased that I felt as good as I did. The water was cold, but actually refreshing and I was even able to do some drafting. I do wish someone could explain to me why I pull left so badly in the open water, but all in all, I did a really good job today of swimming straighter and sighting…my Garmin file didn’t make me cross-eyed and I actually swam up on people AND passed them! 🙂

T1: 1:53 – 4th
It was a pretty long run to T1 – given my lack of run fitness right now, this was probably the hardest part of the race 🙂 I didn’t do anything fancy with shoes or attempt any flying mounts…I just put my shoes and helmet on and ran out. Pretty basic.

Bike: 1:05 – 3rd
I felt very good on my bike, despite panting like a dog the entire ride. My legs had some good snap to them and it was pretty fun to basically ride as hard as I could knowing I didn’t have to run after. Fueling is much less important when you’re only riding 25 miles and don’t have to run so I basically just put my head down and hammered. I may have had a little more in the tank if I was actually competing for something but it’s kinda hard to really bury yourself when there’s really nothing on the line. I started in the last swim wave, so it was fun to pass a lot of people on my bike. It reminded me of racing age group, which I miss from that prospective. Racing “Open” is much more lonely for us weaker swimmers.

And then…my race was over.

Anticlimactic? Yes, very.
Anxious to tear out of transition and run? Yes, very.
Glad to at least be able to swim and ride? Yes, very!

Total time: 1:33 – 1st Aquabike girl or boy 🙂 At least I got a very nice transition mat.

Regardless, it was awesome to be out there and a really fun weekend with friends / clients / family!

The CK Multisport gang!

The CK Multisport gang!

My First 70.3 as a Spectator!


After the debacle of a season I’ve had, it was all I could do to not come home from Eagleman and register immediately for Augusta 70.3 to try and save face on this season.  My level-headed coach, however, advised me that a 70.3 just two weeks before my “A-race”, which happens to be an Olympic distance race on the other side of the world, was not ideal. Boo…but I knew she was right.

From that moment, I knew I wanted to go and watch the race, which I’ve never done!  It’s hard to be a spectator when you’re always racing yourself.  There were tons of people that I knew from Charlotte racing, including 5 athletes that I coach (one that I used to coach) and I was so excited to be a cheerleader!!

I was able to make it to Aiken in time on Saturday after a monster workout (and monster nap of course) to have dinner with three of my friends / athletes.  We ate at a wonderful little Italian place and my choice of sea bass and Pinot Noir did not disappoint!  We had a great time at dinner and everyone seemed to be in good spirits – which was a relief.  I was definitely feeling lots of mixed emotions about not racing.

I got to sleep in a little more than those who were racing – kinda nice – and made my way to the race site with no issues. On my own workout schedule for the day was a lovely little 10 mile run with miles 4-9 at descending intervals starting at marathon pace, essentially, and descending down to an “all out effort” for mile 9. Yowzers.  I parked right near transition / the swim exit and just as I was walking to the site, the Timex race clock was pulling out meaning the lead pro males would be close behind.  I hopped on top of the bridge to watch all of the men roll out and stuck around until my friend and first year pro, Kelly Fillnow, came cruising out not very far behind some pretty big named pros!  This was the first time of many that my eyes welled with tears throughout the day!

Being the multi-tasker I am and given the point to point nature of the swim, I decided to get some of the 4 easy miles out of the way jogging back and forth from where I parked at the exit to the swim start to greet my friends.  I was gladly able to find each athlete before the race, wish them luck and send them on their way.  I then jogged back down to the swim exit where you could see everyone coming out of the water! I love killing two birds with one stone.

Watching the swim exit is a great way to determine the “goals” of each athlete.  MANY-a-people walked out of the water, stopped and kissed their ________ (kid, husband, mom, dad, etc), grabbed a cup of water as they walked by the aid station, heck a few even turned around for a refill, before making their way slowly into transition trying to catch their breath.  Those that are there racing the clock, however, did none of the above.  They flew out of the water with a purpose, tearing at their cap and goggles, ripping their wetsuit down to their waste as fast as possible, blowing by the aid station in a hurry to get on their bikes stat.  I can certainly relate to the later, but it’s nice to be reminded once in a while that it takes all kinds – “different strokes for different folks” is so so true.  Something I remind myself of quite a bit when I wear my coaching hat.

After everyone was off on their bikes, I had a little over an hour before I wanted to be back to transition to see the age groupers out onto the run so I finished up the rest of my 10 miler.  By the last ~3 miles of my own run, the pros were filtering out onto the run course and I stopped and cheered for every one as they came by.  The race is much different as a pro, as I witnessed.  There was hardly anyone on the course cheering, they’re just running on desolate streets, pretty much alone. Much much different than running in the age groups with the crowd support cheering much of the way! I saw Kelly twice in a very deserted part of the course and cheered as loud as I could with some words of encouragement – she said later she was appreciative and that made me happy.  🙂

I finished up my run and was changing by my car just as I saw Sebastian out of the corner of my eye fly around the turn headed into transition.  I hurried up to get back as I knew others would be doing the same very soon!  I saw everyone out onto the run course and positioned myself at mile 1 which is also mile ~7 so I could see everyone!  Specating for one person is hard enough – as my sister/parents often remind me.  Trying to see like 15 people who all started at various times from 7:35am till 9am, is really tough!  Every time I looked down to my Iron Tracker to see when I should be expecting someone, there was someone else coming through!

Being out on the run course was truly awesome!   After I saw my last athlete come through the 1 mile marker, I headed backwards from mile ~7 to miles 6/5/4 in hopes to catch everyone again as they came through on the first, and some 2nd, lap!  It worked!

I got to see Carrie Andrews on one of the less spectator-filled parts of the course and cheered like a lunatic as she started the 2nd lap of a really strong race!  I got to see Sean Doherty coming through on his way to complete his first 70.3 just 6 months after completing his first triathlon (in 5:17!).  I saw Jenny Leiser and have her as much encouragement as I could as she went on to dominate and take the first amateur female title.  I saw TJ Milewski, Julie Kelada, and Mark Hillen all pushing through to put out impressive races!  I got to see Chris Johnson on his way to his best 70.3 performance yet and Sebastian as he flew by me at a pace I might be able to run for 1 mile on his way to a Vegas qualification!  I saw Drew Brashear amidst not such a great day after a sleepless night doing his best to put the sick aside, I saw Gary Pierce casual as ever as if half Ironman was “NDB” to finish with a PR ½ marathon – stand alone and 70.3 included!  I saw Devon Doherty, despite having some hip pain leading up to the race, plugging along finishing 26 minutes faster than her first 70.3 at Eagleman just 3 months prior!  …And I saw countless other people I didn’t know having good and not so good days that I tried to encourage along the way.  I got teary eyed no less than 20 times as people came by and nearly lost it at the finish line as I snapped this photo.

Devon, Mark, Gary and Sean. The best 🙂

I also hadn’t had anything to eat or drink since I ate breakfast at 6:30 am – despite a 10 mile run, 7 hours of spectating, walking, and yelling!  I was famished, dizzy and dehydrated by the time I hit the finish line…and I didn’t even race!  Thank you Sean for saving me!

My takeaways from the race are these:

  1. A LOT of people make it look much easier than it is.
  2. Our sport is really really hard
  3. Spectating is rewarding and really fun!
  4. I’m ready to tackle Ironman Los Cabos training
  5. My friends / clients are inspiring and really really fast.
  6. Do not attempt endurance spectating without food and drink
  7. I am a sap, just like my Daddy.

Congrats again everyone!

It’s all a choice….


“It is all a choice”

I speak a little phrase silently to myself in response to various thoughts that enter my mind throughout the day. It pops into my head when I see a tempo run that I know is going to hurt like hell on the schedule, when I have to jump in the freezing cold swimming pool on a 3o degree day, when I look at my calendar for the next 8 weeks and see I have something scheduled every single weekend…

“It is all a choice”.

There is just something about those words that do the trick for me….they make me commit. Whether it’s commit to the pain of a hard workout, take the plunge into the pool when it’s the last thing I want to do, or uphold every appointment and obligation I’ve made even though all I want to do is go home and put my feet up. I’ve crossed the finish line enough times in this sport to realize that the choice is so worth it…and I’ve come short of crossing the finish line enough to make me respect the hard work and dedication it takes to reach it. I’ve had more bad workouts that I can count on 100 pairs of hands and feet, but I’ve had even more good workouts to make up for all the bad ones. I’ve come across far too many people who don’t understand the meaning of “commitment” to know I never want to be one of them.

“It is all a choice”

As a coach of 17 very, very different athletes from all backgrounds, abilities, goals, and dedication levels, I find myself tempted to utter these same words a lot. Some athletes chose to treat their workout schedule like the Bible, others have chosen to treat it as a “bother” to their busy lives. I am less sympathetic than I probably should be to the “bothered” athletes at times because I know first hand the hoops I jump through nearly everyday to be on point at my real job, get each and every workout done, to keep up with every client almost daily, all while maintaining a life on the side. It all can be done….if you make the choice to do so.

Here are a few recent “complaints” I’ve heard and my staunchly unsympathetic responses. Triathlon is a choice, figure it out 🙂 I never said I wasn’t a hardass.

Athlete: “How am I supposed to swim at night when I can’t predict when I’ll get off work?”

CK: “Was your alarm broken at 5:30 this morning?”

Athlete: “Double workouts? I work full time!”

CK: “You registered for an Ironman. And you paid good money to do so”.

Athlete: “I had to cut my ride short tonight because it got dark”

CK: “The lights in your house are working, right? Your trainer seems like a great place to finish that workout right up”

Athlete: “Work is so busy lately”

CK: “Join the club”.

Athlete: “I’ll be traveling all week, I don’t know if I’ll be able to workout.”

CK: “Bring your running shoes”.

…you get the point. (and I promise I have a soft / understanding / accommodating side too!) 🙂

The moral of the story is, every single day, (almost) every thing you do in life is a choice. You can chose to love what you do, you can chose to hate it, you can chose to procrastinate, or you can chose to take care of it, you can chose to accept it, or you can chose to fight it. Either way, it is a choice.

What will you chose, not just today, but every day?

More Cliff English!


I have been so blog-slack lately that I realized I hadn’t even notified my readers that I’d be in Hilton Head training ALL weekend with the one-and-only Cliff English (again!). Cliff English is a very well-known, likely one of the best, coaches in triathlon. He coaches several well known professional trithletes including Tim O’Donnell, TJ Tollakson, Hunter Kemper (who just qualified to compete for Team USA in his 4th Olympics in London last week) and our very own, Kelly Fillnow (among others)! I was honored to spend a week with him in Tucson this past December and it was such a treat. He hosts several camps in AZ, but last year, he hosted a camp in Hilton Head and when I heard about it, I knew I would do my best to try to go this year – and I am so glad I did.

When I decided to do this camp, I asked one of my friends / athletes that I coach who is also doing Eagleman if she would like to join. I can’t think of a more appropriate Eagelman race setting than Hilton Head. We arrived Friday afternoon, got our stuff settled in my Aunt and Uncle’s condo and headed to the pool for our first meeting with Cliff and first swim of the weekend. The swim session was great. There were only ~10 people at camp including lots of familiar faces from Charlotte (and Tucson!) so there was lots of individual attention, especially in the pool. Cliff is obviously very good at what he does and was a very, very good triathlete himself before he retired in the late 90’s. He’s very laid back and so easy to get along with and is so good at picking up on the “little things” that are lacking in the water. After a ~3000 yard swim, it was time to head home and Devon and I spent the night eating a big yummy dinner, sharing a glass of wine and chatting until much later than we should have given our early alarm on Saturday.

The plan for Saturday was a 3-4 hour ride with a 30 min run off. We rode ~1 hour together as a group to warm up and we ended on a ~5 mile long street with little traffic where we began our “workout”. We were instructed to do 3×10 mile sets with a few min spin in between at descending race efforts. The first was to be Ironman race effort descending to Olympic distance race effort. The road was generally flat, wide open, somewhat windy and PERFECT race like conditions for Eagleman. I felt absolutely great during my intervals and rode very very strong. I opted to only take about 1 min spin in between and remain in aero position so I could simulate how it would feel on race day. I stuck with my exact race day fueling strategy and was pleased with my energy and power output. I basically picked a power number for each lap and aimed to hold it there or slightly increase by the end of each 10 mile loop. My last 10 miles were just under 25mph and I was very pleased with how my legs felt after 80-90 minutes being aero with minimal breaks. No “White Lake phantom leg pain,” just comfortable. Thank god.

The worst part of camp was on the recovery spin back to the parking lot where we started. Kelly and another guy were riding up front, he somehow just swerved wrong, locked handlebars with Kelly and 4 people went down. Luckily no one was too badly injured and everyone got up and walked away, but it surely was scary. One guy has some lasting hip pain that will require a bit of rest, but that was the most serious injury. I was directly behind the guy who went down and I am thankful for my cat-like reflexes (hehe) and being able to get out unscathed. Bike wrecks are NEVER good and they’re always very scary to witness up close and personal.

We spun very easy after the wreck back to the parking lot and prepared for our run, which included a 5 min warm up together with 4×3 minutes building to 10k pace. The first two intervals felt great. I was hitting mid 6’s pace and my legs were feeling fabulous. The last two kinda sucked, not gonna like, and my pace was hovering more in the low 7’s. Nonetheless, I pushed hard for this workout and that’s what counts.

We showered, housed some food back at the condo, and laid on the couch for a few minutes before having to muster up the energy for swim session #2. This swim was much more technique focused and I’m delighted with how good I felt. Considering I was dozing off on the couch 25 minutes before we hopped in the water, I was happy that I actually felt like a swimmer. Cliff corrected two things for me on Friday – my left arm swings when I breath to the right (which I have always been aware of just not sure how to correct) and my left hand enters a bit at an angle – and it seemed as if everything I corrected on Friday really clicked on Saturday. Our set was a bit shorter today and I would be lying if I said I was upset about that. I was ready to be done working out for one day. We scurried back to the condo, showered and met the group at Bonefish Grill for dinner. Phew, long day. We hit the sheets in the 8’oclock hour totally wiped out.

We awoke Sunday morning to overcast skies, which turned into raining skies the minute we stepped out the door for our run. The plan was ~90 minute run starting down by the beach. We got out of the car, chilly, raining and under-dressed, and were less than pumped about our run ahead. Regardless, it was taking place whether we were happy about it or not so I decided to not focus on the misery of the rain, and instead focus on my long term goals. It helped occupy my mind.

Cliff led us through an easy 10 min jog down by the water, followed by some dynamic stretches and some strides, before we regrouped for the start of the run. There is a nice 3+ mile loop that goes around the island and it was perfect for the run today. Obviously there were a wide range of abilities at camp from pro triathletes to people who have been racing about 1 year. There were 2 high school boys, one had never ridden more than 30 miles but can run a 17 min 5k. And another who is running 4 something minute miles. All over the board. The run distance / time was optional up to 3 laps but I planned to run all 3. The goal, which seems consistent with all workouts, was to descend pace from lap 1 to lap 3. I decided to try to run all 3 starting at my 1/2 IM goal pace which is right around 7:35 and then descend slightly. No, not blazing fast but its where I am right now. My other goal was not to let seeing some of the girls take off on their first “easy lap” at 7:15 get in my head. I am proud that I continued to run my pace and never let anyone else bother me, which is one of my biggest weaknesses. I finished the first 2 laps right at, literally, 7:35 pace and the last 3 miles I picked it up ever so slightly to 7:26 pace. I felt good about that. It poured the whole time and I refused to let it bother me. People ran faster than me, and I refused to worry about that. I’m making progress with my mental game. 🙂

We ended camp with a nice 2,000 yard recovery swim to which I also surprising felt good. Cliff said that my left arm and hand entry looked much better which is nice to hear after focusing on something for 3 days. After a quick question and answer session with Cliff, we were on the road by about 2 and heading to Charlotte for the week ahead. Boo.

I am more focused than ever, and truly excited, for Eagleman and this weekend has given me a lot of confidence that I needed to begin to find for the race. I refuse to let my DNF at White Lake hold me back and I’m determined to continue to use it as fuel to hit my goals at Eagleman. Working with Cliff this weekend is such an honor; I learned a lot from him not only as an athlete, but also as a coach and I’m already looking forward to next years’ camp! Thanks Devon for joining me; I couldn’t have enjoyed the company any more! T-3 weeks till our big day!!

Injury Prevention with Dr. Kahn


Post ride today, several of my athletes and I met at the JC Smith track to meet with Dr. Kahn from Greenapple Sports and Wellness and go over some ways to prevent injury in runners and triathletes.  It was so awesome of Dr. Kahn to offer up his time to meet with us.

Devon, CK, Dr. Kahn, Amanda, Nicole, Kendra

We had originally scheduled this for back in February and cancelled because the weather was calling for storms.  It ended up being beautiful that day.  The same thing almost happened again this weekend, but thankfully we decided to keep it scheduled.

Dr. Kahn and my cousin Kristen, who works at Greenapple’s office, took us through a series of 5 progressive exercises to help improve our core, quad, glute strength, both forward and laterally.  As triathletes and runners, we’re constantly moving front to back…very rarely side to side.  Because of this, athletes so often end up out of balance and susceptible to injury.  I had done many of the exercises in my functional assessment with Dr. Greenapple and Dr. Kahn last summer but it was great to go through some new ones and refresh on the old ones.

The progression went something like 10 tuck jumps with a pause in between in the first phase, to 10 double tuck jumps with a pause in between, and by the fifth round, we were doing 10 seconds of double tuck jumps consecutively.  Another example was lateral hops on one foot with a pause in round one and by the fifth phase we progressed to hopping back and forth for 10 seconds without pausing.  It was really great to be there doing the tests/exercises with my athletes for me as an athlete, but also as a coach so I could also see where they need to focus.

Right leg hop, left leg hop, plant.

Dr. Kahn in action.

Between the weather and the company, we really did have a good time and worked pretty hard by the end.  I’ve been receiving “I’m so sore” text messages all day 🙂  Thank you again Dr. Kahn and Kristen for your time yesterday!  If anyone would like to meet to go through some of the movements, please let me know.

All Over the Place


Yes, a very appropriate title for this post. I have been exactly that…all over the place! I left off Wednesday having done a power test and working my tail off. The rest of the week proved to be much of the same work stress but I was able to get in my last long run pre-half marathon on Thursday. I did 11 before work with my sister in tow on her bike for fuel and company. I felt very strong and was able to hit my race pace intervals somewhat easily; I feel ready to race at Wrightsville next weekend. I’m not 100% sure of my exact goal but think I have sub 1:35 in me…I just don’t know how “sub” 1:35 that will be. I’ve run Wrightsville the past 2 years – I raced the full marathon it in 2010 and qualified for Boston and paced my sister last year on the half and I’m excited by now to know the course. I’m hoping for a good race!

After knocking out my last long run Thursday, I was in need of a swim Friday morning. Mission failure. Got in the water and could tell in the first 100 yards I just didn’t have it in me. I graciously accepted this fact and swam a whopping 1000 yards before calling it a day. 1000 is better than 0 I suppose. I ended my week with yoga on Friday night and I can’t think of a better ending to a long stressful week. My hips thanked me afterwards, as did my mind.

Saturday began bright and early with the Corporate Cup! Dawn has been training for the past few months for this race and I wanted to run most of the race with her for support. Given I’m 1-week from my first big “a-race” of the season, I didn’t think running the whole 13.1 with her was appropriate. I saw her off at the start and then drove out to mile 4. It was fun being out there cheering as the front people came through and I saw lots of familiar faces looking very strong! By about mile 8, Dawn was starting to have some knee pain but she continued to run. By mile 10 it was pretty bad and we did a little bit of walking (not much) but she kept on pushing. She feels like she “failed” because she had to walk a few times due to her knee pain, but I am still proud of her for finishing. A LOT of people would have quit.

My friends were in town from Atlanta Saturday so I showered up right after the race and headed to Huntersville where they were staying. We pretty much hung out all day drinking mimosas and playing with Brax and little sweet Sydney! I haven’t seen Syd in probably 3 months and she’s gotten SO big and has developed such a fun-loving personality!

Sydney at 7-months old.

Saturday ended with a baby shower for another good friend of mine, Jordan, who is due with her first little girl in April. Yes, my life is surrounded by babies, if you were wondering. It’s bittersweet. Most importantly, it’s exciting and I’m beyond happy for every single one of them. No doubt about that. I do miss the “old times” though. I’m not sure I’ve seen my good friends in about a year where we haven’t spent 95% of the time talking about first, pregnancy, and now, babies. Given I’m not yet at either of those stages in my life despite my desire to be, it’s definitely an adjustment that takes some getting used to. 🙂 But love those little nuggets to pieces!

Changing gears, I’ve officially decided I’m allergic to white wine. Not only did I get sick after dinner with my parents at Luce after drinking white wine a few weeks ago, I was sick most of the night last night after having 2 glasses at the shower (without even thinking). Its the only “control” in both of the nights I have been sick so it will be eliminated from my life starting today. It’s sad because I love a good glass of Pinot Grigio when the weather is warm but I’ll have to find a replacement drink to crave.

Because of my middle of the night sickness, I decided to sleep in and skip the 8am ride I had originally planned to do. I didn’t get out of bed till 10am, took my dogs for a nice long walk, did a ton of much needed yard work and took an hour long nap before I even thought about riding. Given the clocks pushed back last night, I knew I’d have plenty of daylight even if I started at 2 or 3. I ventured out about 2:45 from my house and knocked out the Spencer / Crammer loop! It was a beautiful day to be on my bike, with no ones pace to ride but my own and no ones thoughts but my own. I spent much of this ride “rehearsing” my discussion with my “big” boss on Tuesday and I feel confident going into the meeting. I got home a little after 6 and did a quick 3 mile t-run- my first one of the season – which ended up feeling okay after the first mile. All in all, a great workout today.

It’s 8pm and I think I’m sitting doing nothing for the first time all weekend. Tomorrow starts with some amazing yoga and a little recovery swim at lunch time. T-3 days until our meeting and T-2 days until I meet with my boss. Back in a flash!

Surviving Saturday


I’m proud to say I survived Saturday with flying colors 🙂

The day started with the Cupids Cup. I had a really great 1.5 mile warm up with some fast-footed strides so I was ready to roll! The course starts up East Blvd at the entrance to Freedom Park….after the huge climb up East, the course is then flat, down a nice long hill on Dillworth Road, up the nice long hill on Romany (I think that’s the street), left on Euclid, left and flat on East for a while and allllll the way down the big hill on East to the finish! I forgot just how steep and long those two hills are on that course though! Throwing your heart rate to threshold within the first 2-3 minutes of a race is never very comfortable!

The good news is I ran 45 seconds faster than last year with a 20:42 (6:40 pace), which is just 2 seconds shy of a PR from White Lake sprint-pancake-flat run last year. I left the race immediately after I caught my breath and headed back up East Blvd to finish my last 5 miles of my day. I didn’t think that anything over 20 minutes would put in in podium-range. Funny timing though, as I was running back down East Blvd to my car and passing by the race site, I hear “now we’ll announce the 30-34 female age group awards.” I took a listen as I ran by and funny enough, heard my name for 2nd place AG. I ran on in to the awards (literally), grabbed my goods, and ran the last mile and a 1/2 of my run. I also realized I got 6th overall female which was great but I’ll leave out the details of the most gratifying part of this race!

It was nice to be done with my long run by 9:15 and I headed home for some belly-nourishment and a shower. I had booked back, to back, to back, to back, to back (yes, 5) private sessions for the day which got started at 11am. Phfew. I kinda failed to remember when I planned my day that a cycling lesson means I actually have to ride my bike too….after a 10+ mile run including an all out 5k. Oops! But whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger…

By the end of my 2nd lesson I was ready to be done moving. I scurried to the MCAC to meet lesson #3, which was a client I had never met in person before that was referred to me from a dear friend. She’s a 2nd time mom with a 4 month old whose husband has been deployed in the Army Reserve for the past several months who was looking to lose some weight. She has run a marathon in the past and wants to get into triathlon once her husband is home and her schedule is a bit more “regular”. We’ve been super creative with her workouts as her time away from her house is limited with the 2 little ones. BUT, the best part of my day was when she told me she’d lost 13 lbs in just a few short weeks we’d been working together! I think I might have clapped and jumped a little when she told me….in true ex-cheerleader fashion.

Its hearing stuff like that which reminds me why I love this crazy-busy life that I’ve chosen. It’s beyond gratifying to me to help people in as many ways as I can….whether its simply providing workouts, providing motivation, friendship, knowledge, “psychologist”…whatever I can do! Every client needs something different, my relationship with every athlete is unique and that’s the coolest thing about coaching to me. I digress.

My final swim lesson had to cancel and though I was looking forward to working with a new client, I can’t say I was too sad. I was able to get home earlier than I planned and grabbed an hour long power nap. I could have slept much much longer.

My evening plans were an absolutely perfect ending to the day I had…in Emily and Scott’s cozy house snuggling with this 4-week old peanut!

It was Emily and Scott’s first night out and he did GREAT! He ate, made dirty diapers, slept and laid in his little blanket like a champ! What more could you ask for from a 4 week old!? He’s changed so much in the 2 weeks since I’ve seen him and I hope I don’t have to go 2 weeks very often without holding him.

All in all, Saturday was a huge success!