Dabbling in Some Racing!

06/03/2014

After a 15 month hiatus from triathlon racing, I was able to complete my first two of this year!! I’m so happy to be able to participate again that even when I’m panting, my legs are burning or I’m being drown by another swimmer, I’m still smiling on the inside. That’s was this year is all about!

Inevitably, I’ll give an update on the ol’ foot cause that seems to be what has guided my life for the past year and a half. My heel is good to go…no pain! Though it took significantly longer after surgery to heal than I was told to expect (e.g. ~6 months vs. 2 – 4 weeks), it truly seems to be behind me and it’s a great feeling! However, the whole time my heel was sucking my ankle was also, I just didn’t realize how much because the pain from my heel was so much more dominant. Unfortunately, despite a healed heel :), my ankle continues to be pissed off, swollen and sometimes black and blue after I run. It really doesn’t like right turns, slanted roads or rocks / stumps / roots at all. The upside though (!!) is that if I don’t for ~2 – 3 days after, the pain essentially goes away, much unlike my heel that hurt 24/7 leading up to and after Cabo. So for now, I’m running no more than ~2 days a week and no more than 3-5 miles each time and cross training / doing other stuff the other 5 days. And I’m delighted to be able to do that! I freikin’ HOPE there is a day when I don’t have to deal with pain anywhere, but I’ll take this any day after what my heel presented to me.

Anyway, given my ability to run a little this year, I decided I’d do a few races for fun! I don’t have any sort of “race season” planned out, I’m just doing what feels right at any given moment. I’m also trying to select races and courses I have never done before because I think comparing results to prior years would kind of suck, quite honestly. I’m 100% certain I’m not in the best shape of my life right now so no need to pour any salt on that wound. 🙂

Carolina International:

In early April, I was starting to get the itch to do something competitive. I have been competing in something basically my whole life and last year sucked from that prospective. Racing is fun, it keeps me motivated and it’s a great social outlet. I searched high and low for a sprint so I could ease my way back into racing but unfortunately there weren’t any that fit my schedule. So I quite literally said “screw it” to myself and registered for Carolina International. My sister got married the weekend before so I knew training would be a little lackluster leading up, but I also knew I could (at minimum) complete the race. I had zero expectations on my performance and was just beyond excited to get out there and have some fun. I thought 100 times leading up to the race that worst case scenario, I could walk the run.

The weather was maybe the most perfect weather I’ve ever raced in, the course was great, and it was so nice to have friends and Derek out there supporting. My sister was very bummed she missed my triathlon re-deubt being on her honeymoon, but I knew she was there in spirit! Like pretty much every race I’ve ever done, this race can be summed up as follows: mediocre swim, fast bike, ok run. Some things never change. 🙂 I very purposfully stayed relaxed on the swim as to not overdue it considering I had been questioning if I had enough endurance for a ~3 hour race leading up to the event. I’m naturally a slow swimmer, so a slow swimmer attempting to stay relaxed = really slow swimmer.

The battery in my power meter was dead on my bike so I rode 100% on percieved rate of exertion. I looked at nothing except how many miles I’d gone. It was nice to ride with no pressure, no numbers, no expectations. I just spun up the hills and cruised hard on flats and downhills. And smiled. I set out on the run excited but in question. I literally had no idea how I would feel. Overall, I would say I surpised myself. Don’t get me wrong, I felt like death at variuos points due to the mountain-like hills that we ran up and down, but given my little run training, I was pleased to see miles ticking off in the 7’s. When you are really dialed into training / racing / results / splits, etc you pace yourself, you know HR’s you should / shouldn’t be seeing, and you know what approximate pace you can run x distance. This was the first time I literally had no idea. I likely ran a bit too hard miles 1-3 but I didn’t do a whole lot of “course recon” (read: none) prior to the race so I didn’t realize quite how hilly it would get. I managed a 7:45 ish pace overall for the 10k with some serious positive splits but seems like that was pretty common…those hills were long!

The funniest part about this race was I went to have fun I ended up winning by default because my friend Carrie swam the wrong course. It was my 2nd only ever race win but will always be “*” to me.

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Tomahawk:

My boyfriend has recently gotten into cycling / triathlon training so we have been looking for his first race to do. Post wedding, my sister was also looking for something fun to do. I recommended Tomahawk because I’ve never done the course, it was nearby and it looked pretty fun!

My focus on the weeks leading up to this race was totally on them and making sure they were ready. We did a few open water swims which are always beneficial to do prior to a race, though I’m fairly certain I’m triathlons worst ever open water swimmer. :-/

Anyway, it poured rain most of the drive down to the race and I thought to myself how much I wished it would stop raining for Derek and Dawn’s sake. I knew neither of them had ever ridden in the rain and they would not be comfortable, but also wished it would stop raining for my own sake. 🙂 and it did…at least for long enough for us to set up transition and get in the water.

This swim was a time trial start by order of registration which I liked and was happy that Derek wouldn’t have to deal with the chaos of the open water start at his first race. I’ve also quit racing “open/elite” this year partially because I’m not in good shape, but partially because I hated it. I just prefer blending as an age grouper and I was glad I did so I could time trial start with the age groupers too! Dawn, Derek and I were all seeded one after another and that was comforting to have them around before the start.

The swim was nice, a little choppy and definitely very long, but I actually felt good and swam somewhat harder than I usually do. My watch clocked 0.74 miles which is quite longer than 1000 meters so I felt slightly better about my very lackluster time post race, and overall this was an ok swim. I’m working on not pulling so significantly to the left and this was a better effort, though I have so much work to do if I plan to keep racing.

I could feel the rain pick up for the last 200-300 meters of the swim and by the time we exited the water it was pretty much pouring. It rained nice for the first 5 miles on the bike and then it let up. Overall my ride was ok – I rode a bit timid because of wind and wet roads but rode hard when it made sense. The course was a great mix of rollers and meandered nicely through the countryside. I passed quite a few men and a couple women but mostly just spent the 18 miles alone.

I headed out for the 8k trail run even more skeptical than I was for the Carolina 10k given I have next to zero experience trail running and have a pissy ankle that doesn’t like right turns or uneven surfaces. I made a point to run in a pair of trail shoes I have and was thankful I did. The trail was quite nice but definitely challenging to get any good speed going. I wasn’t sure my Garmin was working because it was telling me my mile splits were 9 min or so but, given my lack of trail experience, I thought that pace could quite possibly be true. Thankfully it was not. The course was an out and back and I hadn’t seen any girls coming towards me for the first 2+ miles. I started to wonder if a) I was still on course and b) if there were any girls ahead of me. A little less than a mile from the turnaround I saw a tall girl running towards me looking a hell of a lot stronger than I felt! I didn’t think anything about her again because I just needed to focus on not killing myself on the trails!

I crossed the finish line around 1:56 and was happy to have another race under my belt! Even more exciting is that apparently I was the fastest girl to show up that day too! I realize that had a whole handful of girls I know decided to race, that the outcome would have been much different but heck, they didn’t. 🙂 The best part was the sweet bag, a hat, a $50 gift card to Inside Out Sports and $300 check that was presented to the winners! I may have to start training specifically for Tomahawk 2015, like, today! And Derek picked up a 3rd place age group and little gift card as well! Serious swag!

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So that’s what I’ve been up to in a nutshell. My focus this year is not on splits or times or anyone else’s splits or times, it’s simply on having fun and doing what my body will allow. Winning has been fun, but I’m honest and realistic enough to realize that I haven’t gotten more fit, just a little more lucky. 🙂 I hope to be able to do a few more races this year but that won’t be decided until I can stop limping from the last one. One day at a time!

Ta-ta for now my friends!


Maya Tulum Yoga Retreat Day 6 and 7

04/11/2014

I didn’t get a chance to update yesterday because life here in Tulum has kinda taken on a very similar pattern as it has at home….on the go! I’ve met some super cool girls so we’ve been coordinating meals and stuff to do during the day, which means coordinating schedules and bouncing from here to there with less downtime. I’m not complaining because the girls are great and I think they will be people I keep in touch with through yoga retreats, email, Facebook and such, but is has definitely taken a toll on my “me time”. One can never have too many friends and connections!

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Anywho, yesterday was a great day. We’ve keep saying that the days have gotten better everyday and yesterday was my favorite! The morning was filled with yoga and breakfast with friends followed by an afternoon on the beach. The weather was the best we’ve had yet. The breeze was constant so there was never a sweating moment while hanging in your lawn chair but there wasn’t a cloud in the sky! Even with my 9,000 lbs of 200 SPF, I still managed to get a nice tan!

5:00 yoga was taught by Sem again and he is great but very intense. He wants every single person in the class in the perfect posture before we move to the next. When there are 10 people in the class, this can take a while! Needless to say, it was a great workout and I left with burning legs and hips! We also worked on lots of arm balances which it’s always fun to challenge yourself to try new and different postures.

I had mentioned I was teetering on doing the 1000 rep workout to my friend Sydney after class and she was all over it. I was excited to have a buddy to do it with! I definitely miss my sissy and Emily this week! Sydney is less into cardio type fitness than I am so we set her a goal to complete 6 rounds while I did 10. She did great and made it through 6 1/2!! She has been “boasting” (jokingly) that she worked out with an ironman and it’s making me laugh. I’ve always liked people who are funny. 🙂

After the workout, we met our little group of friends for an awesome dinner of salad, almond crusted fish, veggies and corn cake for dessert! Yes, corn + cake. Sounds awful, but was seriously the best thing I’ve had since I’ve been here!! The perfect mix of sweet and salty deliciousness.

We ended the night with tons of laughter and lots of fun crazy stories. All of my friends here are from NYC and they are usually unique, deep, interesting people and these 4 define that! It’s been super fun!

This morning started my last full day here. I’m truly sad but all good things must come to an end. 😦 I’m already in a routine here and am bouncing around from place to place so vacation life is almost the same as home life by now (without some people I miss and my sweet puppies) so that really means it’s time to return to reality. The first Monday at work after vacation is always tough.

This morning there was a 7am meditation before our 8:15 practice. I have refused to set an alarm while I’ve been here so I went to sleep last night telling myself I’d go to meditation if I was up in time. Well I woke up right at 7 and was ok with skipping. It was so cool out so I headed out for my last run while here….a 45 min slow-ish run on the great running path. I have enjoyed having no hills for a week. 🙂

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I made it back just in time for 8:15 class which was challenging. It was with Victor again who has been my favorite instructor and we worked lots of tough core poses! I can say with 100% certainty, I am stronger after this week. 2 1/2 hours of yoga a day for 7 consecutive days will definitely do that! It’s a great feeling!

After yoga we soaked up the last few hours of rays this afternoon. I dozed in my chair my fair share and again, I’m not sorry. I’m reading Ariana Huffigton’s book, (founder of The Huffington Post) Thrive, about unplugging, the need for sleep, meditation, yoga and general taking care of our minds. It’s pretty appropriate and kind of ironic that I’m reading it. I knew nothing about it when I downloaded as it was a last minute recommendation from a friend. Very fitting though.

Tonight’s yoga class was Slow Flow and another favorite. It was exactly what my body needed as I am a little sore from my 1000 reps last night. It was truly the perfect way to end the yoga week.

I will update more on my overall thoughts on this trip, what I’ve learned, reflected on, etc when I get back. I sit and wait on my friends for our final dinner together. Funny how you can get to know people so well in just a weeks time. I’m so glad to have met them though…they have made my trip complete.

Dinner tonight will be fish tomales, mashed sweet potatoes, veggies and the most delicious salad I’ve had in a long time. I don’t even know what the lettuce was, different from anything I’ve had, but amazing.

Thanks for everyone checking in! See you in the states!


Maya Tulum Yoga Retreat Day 5

04/09/2014

Writing “day 5” makes me sad cause that means there’s only day 6 and day 7 left. Boo. 😦

But the days here are long. An hour actually feels like an hour, and not 5 min like it does at home when deadlines are pressing, meetings are scheduled, dogs need fed, the cat is screaming (literally), workouts need completing and life is rolling along at 100mph. Here on the beach, life is slow, every moment of life is enjoyed, just how it should be.

Today began with the same smoothie after a great nights sleep. It got waaaayyy cool here last night after the storm we had and the wind is back to a cool ocean breeze. All is right in Tulum. Given the cool temps, I actually slept bundled up under the covers, windows closed and toasty in my bed. It was magical.

This mornings practice incorporated martial arts into our transitions from pose to pose which made it pretty awesome, fun and different. Victor was our teacher again and this was definitely my favorite practice since I’ve been here. We did lots of arm balances and more challenging poses and I left feeling strong and open. I’m looking forward to Victor’s classes again on Friday!

My sunburn is finally manageable, the aloe wrap helped a ton, so I was able to sit out for a little in the shade and read. I took an hour long walk down the beach and saw all the different resorts as well as various topless women and naked men. Yes. Naked men. Laying out. I guess not much isn’t allowed here in Mexico. I’m ok with it but can’t lie that it was startling to glance left and see “all that” when not expecting it. 😉

After my walk I came back for some lunch and caught up with the world before making my way back to my room for a nice nap. There really is nothing like a nap. If you’re not a napper, you’re missing out on something great. 🙂 Post (longer than I planned) nap, I tied on my shoes and yup, went for another run. I’m shocked at how good my foot feels which is leading me to some conclusions that my foot issues are more related to my tight soleus than I thought. More on that later.

I ran 30 min and included 2 x’s (2 min at tempo with 2 min, 90 sec, 1 min and 30 sec recovery). It’s was the perfect workout for what I was feeling and again, I can’t believe how good my legs and body feel. Reason #2,000 why runners should practice yoga!! I got back from my run just in time to rinse off and head over to our 5pm yoga class which was the perfect balance of restorative and challenge. I have never practiced yoga this much consecutively and it’s pretty nice to do your first downward dog and forward fold and not feel like you are literally going to snap in half. I always fear at home that the teacher will assist me during one of our first downward dogs cause everything is so tight I feel like I might break if pushed any deeper. Class wrapped up at 6:15 and I was feeling energetic so I decided to do a quick strength workout after including 50 pushups, 50 squats, 50 donkey kicks on each leg, 50 sit ups and 50 bicycle crunches. Nothing major but a great end to my workout day.

I will admit the most difficult part of this trip for me workout-wise is the inability to switch up my cardio routines. I’m so used to biking, swimming, running, ellipticalling and athletic conditioning throughout the week that having really only the option to run or do burpee/athletic conditioning type workouts is hard for me. I’m also trying to avoid too much other strength stuff so if feel good for yoga so I’m avoiding the a/c type stuff. I rarely ever run two days consecutively at home but I am thankful my body is playing nice and allowing me to do so here. I’d love to go for a swim but the water is definitely too rough and that would just end up being no fun. So running it is and I’m really enjoying it.

Post yoga and mini workout, it was again time to hit the spa. Tonight’s treatment was a Mayan Clay massage which hit the ball out of the park. The freikin cats meow, I tell ya! Mayan Clay is basically a natural cleanser for the skin that removes impurities. They exfoliate your entire body with a sea salt/sand mixture and then lather you up in clay while massaging simultaneously. The Mayans are known for their body treatments including one that involves massage of the abdomen to “rearrange” the internal organs. You can Google it and finds all sorts of neat info. My treatment was a combo and included about 25 min of the abdominal work…score! It was amazing to feel her “work out” all sorts of impurities from within, some I wasn’t even feeling. After your entire body, face and even hair are covered in the clay, they wrap you in a warm towel and you relax while it dries. It feels so wonderful. You then shower to rinse the clay and then get a second shorter full body massage, this time with a complimentary moisturizing oil. The whole process is 90 min long and one of the most relaxing, luxurious things I’ve ever experienced. I even bought some clay for me and some family back home. 🙂 If this treatment is ever available to you, I highly recommend.

My massage didn’t end until 8:30 so I headed for a quick dinner of salad, quinoa topped with roasted veggies and, of course, flan to top it off! No margarita tonight. I think the sour/lime was giving me a little bit of heartburn. 😦 I notified my masseuse about this and she focused the abdominal portion on relieving it. Hokey as it may sound, it’s actually gone! She recommended I avoid guacamole and lime for 24 hours. Boo.

So that about wraps up my day. It’s chilly here again tonight and I’m looking forward to burying in my covers and listening to the ocean while I sleep. Soaking up and enjoying every piece of heaven I can while I’m here!

Until tomorrow! Namaste amigos!


Maya Tulum Yoga Retreat Day 4

04/08/2014

I sit and drink a mango margarita as I type this post. Seems to be a nightly tradition here in Maya Tulum for me. 🙂 I rarely drink at home but it’s been nice to wind down with a cocktail here on vacation.

Today began slightly later than the last 3 as the wind has died down some and my friend Sydney gave me some ear plugs to drown out the screaming birds. This bode well for sleeping. After another quick smoothie, I headed straight to the morning practice. I am seeing the classes get progressively more challenging as the week goes on, but I will say they are a complete breeze compared to what I’m used to at my home studio. Given how frequently I’m practicing though, I’m totally ok with it. I am still getting cardio workouts in during the day and my yoga practice feels wonderful. The class sizes have grown from 4 on day 1 to about 12 this morning due to people trickling in for their vacations. The additional energy from more bodies in the room is awesome. I’m really enjoying the different types of teaching styles and finding new ways to get into poses.

After class, I went straight to my room and put on my running gear. I had plans to do a 1000-rep workout that I like to do, but running was calling my name again. It was overcast and cooler than it’s been which likely pursuaded me. The 1000-rep workout also includes lots of (100) burpees and push ups (100) and squats (100) and I wanted to save my strength for yoga while I’m here. It was a good decision to run. I did a “real” run workout with tempo, threshold and some walking and it’s amazing how open and good my body feels. Typically it takes me 1-2 miles not to feel like absolute ass, but with all this deep yoga, everything is so open and ready. It rained on me lightly for the last 3-4 min and I didn’t complain. It poured 2 min after I got back to my room.

Post yoga run I hit the sheets for a nap since it was raining and I absolutely love a good nap after a hard workout. I came up and had lunch after and just chilled out chatting with some people I’ve met for the afternoon. Yogies are so awesome.

At 4pm I had an Aloe Wrap scheduled at the spa to alleviate the sunburn sting that’s still haunting me. This treatment is not for the modest at heart. You basically strip naked, lay on top of a wet, cold sheet, they slather you in freezing cold fresh aloe (like they squeeze it from the plant in the room) and then you lay there getting a foot massage and facial while the aloe does it’s thing. After, you walked naked to the shower (while your masseuse accompanies you) to rinse off the aloe. Then it’s back to the table, still naked, for your coating of aloe infused oil. It definitely took the sting out of my sunburn though and I couldn’t care less about a 50 something year old Mexican lady seeing me naked, so I thoroughly enjoyed it. I think I’ll be completely mended by tomorrow and maybe brave enough to lay out, with my 9,000 SPF under an umbrella for an hour or two tomorrow. 🙂

Since my wrap went from 4-5:15, I missed the 5pm class tonight. Instead, I went to the studio after and did a self-practice. It was nice to hit all my favorite poses and hold them as long or as little as my heart desired. There was another girl there practicing as well, so we decided to take some photos of each other doing our favorite poses. I’m not much for selfies or anything but I’ve always wanted to capture myself in some of these poses! Here are a few of my favorites.

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After a dinner of almond crusted flounder, I’m heading out to Mateos again for a cocktail with 2 girls I met. Looking forward to getting off campus for a little!!

Until tomorrow friends;


Maya Tulum Yoga Retreat Day 3

04/07/2014

Much like yesterday, today began relatively early after a not so great night of sleep. I will admit, though my room is very charming and very “Mayan”, there is no air conditioning and that is very hard to get used to. I am a very hot natured person as it is and was stupid enough to get sunburned yesterday, which made last night even more toasty. I’m finding the zen and not complaining though…it’s not like I can’t sleep all day if I choose. (My next yoga retreat will be at a resort with air conditioning though). 🙂

Anyway, after a yummy smoothie and some more fresh OJ, I made my way to 8:15 yoga. Today’s practice was Alquimia yoga which is the instructor, Victor Varana’s, personal style of yoga. It was very restorative but also very intense. We held several poses for quite a while and after the hip opening class last night, I was feeling the long holds. I am making lots of minor changes to various poses that I’ve been doing for years to move things more in alignment and be stronger in my practice. Getting “better” at something always feels good.

After yoga, a great girl I’ve met, Sydney, and I walked down to the bike rental shop. She’s an ex-Lehman Bros investment banker and we have lots in common. We rented two (very old, rickety) bikes and peddled our way 5-6 miles down to the Mayan Ruins. There is basically an entire city of ruins and these are one of the few remaining situated on water. The views were amazing, the structures were huge and impressive, though I have to say my appreciation for them as a whole probably could be more. After we had seen 3-4 of the buildings they all started kinda looking the same. 😉 I’m glad I went though.

After the ruins we rode our bikes to the beach and went for a dip to cool off before heading to Mateo’s Mexican Restaurant for, what I’ve heard from no less than 10 people, are the best fish tacos ever! I love fish tacos so had to see for myself. They sure didn’t disappoint and the fresh mango salsa that went on them was the kicker. So very delicious enjoyed with a mango margarita!

Post mid-day margarita I opted for a quick hour nap before my 4pm class. Sadie has invited me to drop into one of her classes whenever so I took the opportunity to do so tonight! Her practice is very focused on core alignment and I really enjoy practicing with her. She’s very insightful with an occasional side of NY f-bomb thrown in, which is right up my alley! Some people might take offense to it but I find it awesome. We had a 30 min group discussion after practice which was neat to expand yoga beyond just warriors and folding.

I’m currently enjoying a huge salad, seafood soup, a spinach and manchenga stuffed zucchini, a little flan, and of course, a margarita. As I said, the food has yet to disappoint! Sydney and I are contemplating taking our bikes into town for a few cocktails tonight but the weather is looking “islandy” and spotty right now so we shall see. Post 1 glass of pure grain liquor margarita I’m pretty worthless.

Namaste my friends. I hope all is well back in the states! 🙂


Maya Tulum Yoga Retreat Day 2

04/06/2014

So day 2 is wrapping up and my words to describe today include relaxing, peaceful and thankful!!

I awoke earlier than I would have liked listening to several (thousand?) birds screaming chirping outside my window and the sound of the waves crashing against the shore. It was a slightly more peaceful way to wake up than with my max volume “horn” of an alarm at home. I laid in bed reading for a little before meandering my way over for breakfast before my 8:15 practice. The food has been wonderful- I had 2 scrambled eggs with manchenga, loads of veggies, a side of gluten free toast and fresh (I mean, fresh) squeezed OJ! It was delicious.

The 8:15 practice was “beginner vinyasa flow” and was the perfect start to my day. The first thing the teacher asked us was to practice like a beginner, even if we weren’t. It was actually pretty neat to focus so meticulously again on poses I have been doing for 7/8 years now. We didn’t do anything out of the ordinary, but to spend more than 15 sec in a pose and actually tweak it to “perfection” was kind of cool. The studio / classes I attend in Charlotte are very high pace and high intensity / energy and I love them, but it was nice to change the pace this morning. I didn’t feel worn out after class, just relaxed and stretched out.

After a 2nd very small sampling of breakfast I made my way to the spa where I would be for the next 2 hours.

It. Was. Magical!

Don’t get me wrong, I have an awesome massage therapist in Charlotte who is truly amazing at body work and I LOVE going to see, but there’s something about hearing the ocean while pampering yourself that takes it to the next level. I felt very fortunate the whole time I laid there and got worked on.

After my massage, I promptly put on my suit and headed to a lawn chair on the beach, lathered in 200 lbs of 9,000 SPF sunscreen, of course! Given my early wake up, I immediately dozed for for a good hour in my chair before making my way in for lunch. The weather is gorgeous with lots of wind which is nice for keeping cool while relaxing and sleeping on the beach. I have thought to myself no less than a dozen times though “I’m sure glad I’m not here for a race”. The wind would be VERY concerning. 🙂

After lunch, I opted for a bit more lawn chair time and again, some more snoozing. In total, I took 3 separate naps today and I’m not sorry. 🙂

By about 3:30 I was feeling like I’d had plenty of sun. As it turns out, a downfall of beach vacations alone is not being able to apply sunscreen adequately to your own back. Holy sunburn! And there’s nothing like zero sun for 6 months and then Mexico…doh!

With my new red back and splotches all over, I made my way back to my room for a run and some downtime before my 5pm hip opener practice. Being a runner/athlete is very counterproductive to open hips so I was really looking forward to this session. I ran 5 very very slow miles and enjoyed the scenery. My ankle wasn’t killing me, for once, after my run yesterday so I was excited to go again today! I didn’t feel like running hard today like I did yesterday, so I didn’t. There is definitely a beauty of being on your own schedule. :).

The minute I walked in door for yoga the instructor asked me what other activities I do because clearly looking like a linebacker doesn’t scream yogie. I’ve been asked this about 5 times in the 2 days I’ve been here further making that point. :-/ Anyway, the instructor was super knowledgable and great with demonstrations to help us get deeper into various hip openers and poses. It was very intense and I’m certain I’m going to feel it tomorrow.

I just ate dinner which included some fresh guacamole, shrimp kabobs and veggies and a little gluten, dairy (taste) free slice of carrot cake (it got the job done at least) and a (really strong) margarita! It was delicious and the perfect ending to my day of activity and relaxation.

I was asleep by 8:40 last night and I’m sure after this margarita (which is basically liquor and 2 fresh squeezed limes) I’ll be asleep at a similar, if not significantly earlier, time tonight.

If you can’t tell from my post that I’m having a great time, then I’ll say it now…I’m so thankful to have this opportunity. This is just what I needed!


Still All Over the Place

03/15/2012

I’ve been avoiding blogging the past couple days simply because there is so much going on I don’t even know how to condense my thoughts and whereabouts into one appropriate blog post.  I reread my last post and I have never read anything more random.  I don’t think this one will prove to be any more focused.

Since my last post, here is an update on the items I’ve received the most questions about:

My new bike was delayed just slightly.  As the build was coming to completion last Thursday, there was a Di2 part  being installed and it turns out it was faulty.  Stu was on the phone getting part replaced and it promptly arrived at his shop in MD the following day.  Unfortunately for me though, Stu had a week long trip to Spain planned leaving Friday morning.  Given Stu is the best of the best at bike fit and high end builds, I agreed to wait for him to return to put his final touches on everything.  I believe I will have my bike no later than next Tuesday…and I’m hoping Monday!  For real this time.

I got to see one of my best friends, and website extraordinaire, again on Tuesday night (I just saw her in February when I I went to MD to get my bike)!  Aubrey is a teacher and had this week off for Spring break.  Since she hadn’t yet had a chance to meet Braxton, so she hopped in the car last minute on Tuesday and spent the day with Emily while I worked.  The three of us met for dinner Tuesday night and ended up being the last people out of the restaurant at 11:30!  Always so fun to be with Emily and Aubrey at one time – two of my very favorite people in this world.  I was hoping to leave work early Wednesday to get to see her one more time before she left on Thursday but just didn’t work out.

As everyone knows, the weather has been so wonderful here and we were able to sit outside at Vapiano’s and kick back after a very stressful few weeks in the office. After the last white wine debacle, I obviously have decided to forego consumption going forward.  I opted old faithful – vodka, cranberry, splash of soda, and a lime (our favorite Jordan!).   I had two very small drinks, and called it a night by about 7:45.   By 8:30, my feet and fingers were swollen to twice their normal size and my feet were bright red and itchy.  Aside from the swelling in my hands, feet, and legs, I felt fine.  Fortunately, I didn’t end up getting sick like the last few times, but there’s certainly something going on that I’ve got to figure out.  I’m not a big drinker by any stretch of the imagination, however, I really can’t imagine my life as a “non-drinker”.  I definitely look forward to a cocktail or two (and sometimes 3 or 4) on occasion and love nothing more than a drink with a friend over dinner.  I don’t drink every night, nor can I really remember the last time I was truly drunk, but I still enjoy drinks a lot!  I don’t want to give them up!  More to come on that.

As I’ve said, I have my first real race of the season on Sunday.  I’m feeling really good this week and despite slightly lower volume trying to rest my legs for the race, I have had some pretty solid workouts.  I did 4-miles of speedwork on Tuesday and though I could feel lingering fatigue in my legs from the weekend I still held a 6:50 pace which I feel good about (on the hilliest course ever).  For me, 6:50 is well below race pace and I’m hoping race pace feels comfortable given some rested legs.  Getting faster is such hard work!

Other fun stuff on the horizon is my first trip to Nashville the last week of March!  One of my great friends Shannon is getting married in April and we’re headed down for her Bachellorette weekend.  Emily and I talked about taking a trip to Nashville since we moved to Charlotte 10 years ago!  We both love our country music and have heard such great things about Nashville; it will be Emily’s first weekend away from Braxton and I’m certain the old Emily will be out in full force.  Most all of my other great friends will be there too and I can’t wait…I’m certain Monday will not be very fun.

On the New Zealand front, Dawn has done a great job planning out our itinerary and it’s starting to feel more real.  We’ve got plans to visit 5 different cities between NZ and Australia!  We have tons of adventures planned, and also some time to chill out.  It’s going to be the trip of a lifetime and I’m beyond appreciative Dawn is coming, most importantly, and also that has spent the time to work out the details!  A HUGE weight off my shoulders.

Going forward, my plan is to not make blogs about 100 different topics.  I try to stay a bit more focused but that hasn’t seemed possible lately.  Be patient with me blogger friends!

Hope everyone has been enjoying this weather as much as I have.  It was ALL I could do to drag myself to work today with the 75 degree temperatures as I headed out my front door.  And it was all I could do to get myself into the pool tonight when all I wanted to do was run.  Must rest!  Hoping this beautiful weather sticks around for race day!