Friday, May 30, 2008

Not Plantars but...

myofascitis An inflammation of the thin layer of fibrous tissue (fascia) that surrounds a muscle and attaches it to the bone.

or rather I have:
myofascial pain A large group of muscle disorders characterised by the presence of hypersensitive points, called trigger points, within one or more muscles and/or the investing connective tissue together with a syndrome of pain, muscle spasm, tenderness, stiffness, limitation of motion, weakness and occasionally autonomic dysfunction.

Yea, that seems about right.

Tuesday afternoon during our warm up run before doing Wilke Hill repeats (yes, running up Wilke...I know...), from my heel through my arch on my right foot started hurting. It started like it was just needing to be stretched or warmed up, so I kept going. But on the 6th time up Wilke (YAY for 6!), the pain had finally bested me. I let Erin go about the cool down while I iced my foot.

That night whilst sleeping, I recall trying to move it and stretch it from time to time only to be rudely awakened by pain shooting from my foot. Owie.

My first thought was, Oh no...PLANTARS! That dreaded injury that has sidelined many of friend for weeks and months. Not now, I though...tri season is just underway! NNNNNOOOOOO!

I sent off a quick, "Help, what should I do?" email to a couple of friends from my iPhone, swung my legs out of bed and did my best impersonation of Uma Thurman in Kill Bill trying to walk after having been in a coma for 4 years....boom, right to the floor.

It was a big time owie. Ended up literally hoping around on one foot getting the boys ready for school. Driving was a nightmare...gave me goosebumps just trying to work the pedals in the car. (really safe...I know...). But Shay was so cute when I hopped upstairs. He asked me what was wrong and I told him I thought I really hurt my foot. He responded by offering me his four foot tall shoulder, "Here, lean on me Mommy." So sweet.

Anywho...I was lucky enough to get a quick appointment with the fantastic folks, specifically Dr. Boub at Performance Wellness (via recommendation from Wiley). And let me tell you something, that Graston technique. OUCH. Basically a metal bar being scraped down your leg in an attempt to dislodge, disintegrate and remove all the adhesions that have nestled themselves into my muscles. ick.

The really humorous part came when the hooked me up to the electrical stimulation on my calf and foot. The tech says, "ok..tell me when it is as much as you can take.." oh jeez, I think. I've had stim before and I remember it being more weird than painful, but I say, "ok." And no sooner than when she turns it on the LOWEST setting, I have a searing pain in my calf that literally lifts me off the table. "That hurts?" she asks... "YES!" I reply through clenched teeth. My god..my calf was on fire...I never remember stim feeling like this. The tech takes off the warmer to look at my calf and it is doing its impersonation of a tennis ball under my skin. A calf cramp like all hell! (Those who remember me at the water stop after the Longhorn...same thing...hmmmm...) She turns it off and we work through the cramp.

"Ok, let's try it again," she says.
"Ok."

Next thing I know...heat...pain..red dots flashing in front of my eyes...OOOOUUUUCCCHHH!

This time she sees it and backs off the stim. "We'll just wait for your next treatment, ok?"

"ok" I agree weekly.

The foot stim went just fine fortunately. And the therapy really worked because the next day my foot was feeling much, much, much better! I was able to ride and even walk without looking like Uncle Fester. YAY!!

I go back on Saturday for another round. I hope my calf cooperates this time. Ugh.

So until I quit limping around, only biking and swimming for me. Boo. That means tomorrow's Adventure Quest is out....and definitely no trail running The Loop race on Sunday either.

Dammit. Grrrrrrr......

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Pictures are worth a 10,000 words

In case my words did not convey my spirit accurately enough, here it is captured by JJ:

But here I am on the bike...don't my new wheels look great!

And here I am running...well jogging...but I'm fired up about how my shoulders look :)



Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Thank you sir! May I have another? (aka CapTex Race Report)

ouch. My psyche hurts. It is very sore from the race this weekend. Surprise! I know.

It is clear now that I am a complete headcase when it comes to CapTex, well really, just swimming in town lake. That damn swim beat me AGAIN this year. Rather, I beat me again this year.

It started out fine enough. The temperature wasn't THAT cold, since I'd been swimming in barton springs. I didn't feel like my wetsuit was choking me, since I'd been swimming in that in barton springs. I found a nice starting spot when my wave (finally) went off. It all seemed to be going swimmingly well actually.

My first panicky moment came after the initial little sprint at the start while everyone was trying to just get started and finding their groove on the swim. My heart rate was a little elevated, but I remained calm, slowed my stroke, rolled a little extra so I could take in some nice, deep breaths and carried on my merry way. I thought to myself...ok, good..was getting a little excited, but I'm ok now...let's just swim. And I did. I was hanging somewhere around the first 10 in my wave, just picking our way through the water and dodging some stragglers from the wave ahead of us.

The next panicky moment came at the turnaround because everybody bunches up at the buouy. I had actually chosen the inside lane because I breathe on the left and I wanted to see everybody while I swam...I didn't want to be surprised by someone pummeling me from my blind side. While this works great in a counter-clockwise swim, CapTex is clockwise...so I'm on the inside at the buouy where EVERYBODY ends up. shit.

I got tagged on the foot, some chick pushed me in the middle of my back, I took in some water during a breath from all the white caps of everyone turning, and started to get excited. There goes my heart rate...yikes!! I quickly swam away from everyone, slowed my stroke, rolled a little extra, took some big, clear breaths and was able to get myself back together. Phew. Disaster avoided, again.

So now I'm thinking...sweet, I think I'm good. I'll just meander down the back stretch, take my time and wrap this thing up. And then as I'm just tooling along, I hear this little raspy rattle in my chest. It is small at first, then it keeps getting bigger and louder. Shit. I'm going to have to cough and get this stuff out of here because I feel like I've got crap in my lungs. wait. crap in my lungs. It's getting harder to breathe. Less oxygen, more crap. shit. shit. shit.

I stop....tread...cough...cough again....can't get it out....my wetsuit is too tight..I can't get a big enough breath...shit...shit..shit...cough dammit...I can't... (heart rate begins to increase)...ok..just swim..you'll be fine...take two strokes...come up coughing...can't breathe...too much water inside..water outside...shit..shit..shit....just keep moving forward...I breast stroke, but come up sputtering everytime I try to take a breathe and put my head under...son of a bitch...I can see the finish...I can hear them calling people's names out of the water....Tracy Lord...shit...Laurie Allen...shit...Stacey Carroll...shit...cough..sputter..cough...cough..I'll never catch them now...hell, I'm gonna die out here I just know it.....Dammit, D! Just freaking Swim!...It's less than 400 meters...put your freakin' face in the water and swim....I can't...do it now D...I CAN'T...DO IT NOW DAMMIT...I CAN'T......I CAN'T...I CAN'T....DAMMIT...DAMMIT..DAMMIT... You SUCK D....I know...What the hell are you doing?...I'm panicking...well, stop panicking...I can't, my heartrate is through the roof, I'm panicking, I'M PANICKING...ok, so you are panicking, fine then just keep moving forward while you panic...ok...I don't care how you do it, just keep moving forward... ok...forward, here we go....I can't put my face in the water...fine, don't...just keep moving forward... ok..forward...forward...forward...I can't believe I can't swim...just shut up and swim....didn't I just swim 2 miles straight the other day...yes...and now I can't swim 1500...yes..I suck...yes, you do, but keep moving...I want to stop...too bad...I want to cry...so what...keep moving and get out of this damn water....ok...forward..forward...forward.

I finally reached the swim exit and the volunteers literally dragged me out of the water. I felt so many things at that moment. Relief to be out, Saddness at my performance, but mostly just plain pissed off that I couldn't talk myself off the ledge of panic that third time. I felt weak. Not so much weak in the body...weak in the head. I couldn't even look at my friends in the face. I felt ashamed..they came out to cheer me on and this is what I do. I was completely defeated. I walked slowly up the stairs making my way to transition. A volunteer nurse came up to me. "Are you ok?" he asked. I'm not sure how I responded. He followed with "I'm a nurse, I can help." Not unless you are a shrink, you aren't going to help me with shit right now. I shook me head, and let out a feeble, "I'm ok."

Erin came up to me next as I was walking. "You ok?"
"Yea, I'm fine."
"You want to stop?"
YES! my mind screamed...but somehow "No" came out of my mouth. I didn't even recognize the voice. I was like, who said that? as I slowly peeled off my wetsuit, dried off my feet, put my socks on, slipped into my bike shoes, put my pink shades on, donned my helmet, buckled up, slid my bike of the rack and slowly walked towards the bike out.

Talk about muscle memory. I really have no clear recollection until I was pedalling over the south first bridge when the mental dialog began again.

Wait..I thought I was quitting....no, there is no quit, just shut up and ride....you have one loop to get your act together....eat, drink, be merry....yea, right...is there any queso in this bento box? I need comfort food...there will be as much queso as you want after....but now, we ride!....yee- mother freakin-haw.....I suck...whatever...this sucks...whatever....you have half a loop left to wallow....dammit, dammit, dammit....ok, I'll ride..but I'm not going balls out because I still have a 10-k....whatever, the run will take care of itself, don't worry about it now...well, I guess I can just walk it like last time....whatever.....

I discussed myself around the four loops and actually jogged back into transition and got ready for the run. I hated seeing all the bikes on the rack in my age group, but oh well..what can you do.

Let's just walk this ok....no....I can't run, I'm not feeling it...I don't care, get moving...ok, I'll run for a little bit....ok, run to the aid station....ok....walk through, get water, get gatorade, throw some water on your head...ok....now, run to the aid station...ok....walk through, get water, get gatorade, throw some water on your head...ok...now, run to the aid station....

That was pretty much how I made it around 6 measely little miles...Boston Qualifier...hah.

I tried to find some humor towards the end when I passed Panther et al saying, "Did I mention how much I hate this race?" with a smile...when I really just wanted to cry.

I managed to run, well jog, across the finish line.

On a cheerier note, I actually PR'd! Can you believe it? (Yes, the last outing was worse than this one!) My time in '06 was 3:59....this year was 3:14!!

Maybe next time I can break 3 hours.....

wait...next time? who the hell said that??

Monday, May 26, 2008

Hello Angels

Kerry, Erin, Kris and I had lunch one afternoon last week and Kerry wanted to show us some shoes she had just gotten. So, we left Doc's and were walking to her car...Kerry was just ahead of us, when she turned around to say something to us and just started cracking up.



We were like, "what what?" And she said we looked like Charlie's Angels walking together. Then she took a photo, naturally.





Do we look tough, or what?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Lulu's Gauntlet

She had to do it. Post her splits from the track workout. You are right E, she is a good rabbit! ;)

The workout was 8-12 x 200 at 5K pace (w/200 recovery) then 4X100 ALL OUT.

Did I mention it was 100 degrees yesterday evening when we ran. Just thought I'd mention that.

I figured 5k pace for the 200 should be about 0:51, right? Checked Lulu's splits. Whew. It was going to be tough. Here we go:

1: 49 (oops, a little too fast)
2: 49 (well, consistent at least)
3: 50
4: 50
5: 50 (I think that is as close to target as its going to get)
6: 51 (wrong! was tired...took a water break..had to drink from the cooler with no cups.)
7: 48 (ahhh...water definitely helped)
8: 48
9: 48
10: 49 (feeling the heat..damn it is tropical today)
11: 48 (c'mon D...pull it together..one more..)
12: 47 (phew!)

All outs:
1: 17
2: 17
3: 17
4: 17

Damn...that was hard and hot. (Yea, yea...that's what she said.)

Ps-> It was awesome to see my old buddy Nick out there! Welcome back NICK! Who, apparently had been kicking serious ass in the 5k/10k PR class by dropping his 10K time by 4 MINUTES and kicking 5k's at 6:48/M.

HELLO! Nice work there Nick!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Reframing

It is the monkey on my back. It is coming. Soon. Very, very soon.

Since the debacle in the water of '06 (exec. summary: some desperate woman unexpectedly tried to use me as a life preserver..needless to say we both went under a few times, ingesting Town Lake in the process. I was thoroughly out of breath, completely horrified and just plain unable to recover..finished the race but WALKED the entire 10k hacking up bits of the lake all the while....big fun.), Town Lake has been a house of horror for me. I know it is all mental...everyone has a bad race..yada, yada, yada. But every time I get in that damn water I think back to that moment of being dragged under, taking in that disgusting water only to surface and breathe in gasoline fumes...ugh...I literally have to forcibly talk myself into that swim.

REFRAME:

CapTexTri is taking place on the fantastic Lady Bird Lake! It's going to be a great time. I'm not racing, but just going to go out, participate and have a good, fun time. The water will be warmer than Barton Springs (which I've been swimming in...in a wetsuit, of course.) and there will be lots of awesome pro athletes out there to watch! YAY!

And this year it is on a Sunday so that means I can actually go out Sunday night and party like the rest of the world for Memorial Day! :)

(psst.....is it working yet??)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Get Back on the Horse

My revised plan was to just take yesterday off. Following my bonk debacle, I really was not looking forward to doing anything....and then I got a message from Wiley..

"You need to run today?"
"Need?"

ugh.

After much back and forth, I finally succumbed and agreed to meet him for a 7-mile loop around Lady Bird Lake at high noon. I said I wanted to go easy...but of course my easy is pretty much walking for Wiley, so he said HE would go easy, I would go MODERATE. 8:15 - 8:30 pace.

Well, shit. Alright. Dammit.

I was really nervous. What if my legs still felt like crap? What if I wasn't feeling it AGAIN? Wiley said bring an extra Gu in case the Bonk Monster shows up. Ugh.

Alright, alright, alright.

And to be sure it wasn't nutrition, I loaded up on 550 calories between breakfast and about an hour before we started. Turns out that might have been a bit too much. Needed emergency pit stop at mile 4.

Other than that, however, the run was great! Hot, Humid....but great! Wiley is an awesome running partner....he talks, sings and raps the whole time! I only needed to chime in every now and then, but he would just keep going for the most part.

Around mile 5 or so, Wiley started looking down at my ankle...and I said, "what is it?" thinking there was some creepy, crawly thing on me. "Nope, not there." "What isn't there?" I asked. "The Bonk Monster." Indeed, he was gone. Good Riddance to you I say!

We ended up at an 8:19/M pace. Precisely where we wanted to be.

Thanks Wiley for dragging me out there. It was good to get back on the horse!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

BONK! Goes the D.

Well, I'm sure it happens to everyone now and then, right?

BONK

Don't know what happened yesterday...

The humidity? - I've run in worse
Tired from the race? - It was saturday, lasted under one hour and I ran 11 miles on Monday just fine
Nutrition? - Had a monster lunch with Erin and Maggie after a (bracing, refreshing -- not) swim in Barton Springs and followed that with a powerbar snack just before workout, so no.
Macro Cycle Overload? - Last week was as easy week, so no.

I dunno.

I just sucked.

Half way into the warm up run I knew it just wasn't going to happen. I really wanted to just stop right then. But managed to muster through the warm up. (Probably because we were passing Texas Iron right then...couldn't possibly stop!)

The revised workout was Zilker cutdowns. Do the zilker 1200 loop at 10-K effort. Each repeat, cut the time by 5 secs. Not ADD 5 seconds, Gina!! And she's responsible for teaching tomorrow's leaders...uh oh! ;) Goal was to do 3-5.

Did the first at something nowhere near 10k effort...more like marathon pace. Wanted to quit.

Did the second five seconds faster...really, really wanted to quit. Walked the recovery. Felt like ass.

Did the third at some abysmal pace..I don't even want to look at my swanky new Garmin and see what it was. Then quit.

Yep..I quit.

Some folks went on and did a 4th easy...I said. No thanks. Me. Saying No thanks.

BONK BONK BONK.

I need a nap and it's only 8:41am.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Racing with the Rear View Mirror (aka The Rookie Race Report)

It's the official start to the 2nd Annual Texas Tri Series hosted by Jack and Adams!

(Please note that the length of the race has no influence on the length of my race report...just warning you.)

The Rookie! A quick 300 meter swim, 11.1 mile bike and a 2-mile run. I'm assuming originally designed for folks to...um...get their feet wet with triathlon. But over the past couple years, it has turned into an all out Fast Fest with some of Austin's best triathletes showing why they kick some serious ass. Amy and Brandon Marsh, Andrea Fisher, Patrick Evoe, Paul Terranova, Kelly Handel, Todd Gerlach...and a bunch of other names most tri folks recognize...all showed up to demonstrate the "sprint" in sprint distance. Holy crap, these folks are fast.

And, as you know by my previous post, I was a little anxious going into the race. I had some expectations for myself and it was making me nervous. No excuse for horsing around this year, you know? Additionally, I've perceived (right or wrong) a friendly rivalry with a fellow age grouper (who I've known since the 8th grade! Boy, is Austin a small town) who I knew would be at the race also. I could be just me whipping up some unnecessary drama, but I just had it in my mind that she's out to get me.

Anytime we've gone head to head, except for once -- last year's Austin Tri, I win...but barely. She's always there breathing down the back of my neck. But you know what...I love it! It's great to have someone pushing you...and good competition can be fun!!

However, I pretty much spent pre-race strategizing and racing thinking about what was going on in my rear view mirror. The race plan from my coach was centered around making sure I finished the race ahead of her. My thoughts during the race were making sure I finished ahead of her.

It wasn't until after the race was over (and I did in fact finish ahead of her) and I was looking at the stats, that I realized I had spent the whole time thinking about what was going on behind me and not what was ahead of me. I missed first place by 36 seconds. 36 SECONDS!!

Had I just ONCE looked ahead at the woman in first place and thought (and known) all I need is to pick up 36 seconds on that chick, I would've hawked her down. But I wasn't looking ahead, I was looking behind...even literally occasionally. During the run, I knew my nemesis wasn't going to catch me, I just needed to hold steady and I would beat her.

And looking at my stats, my run pace was 7:47. 7:47?!?!? Not even close to my PR from last year AND certainly not what I should be capable of. Last month on the same course at Spenco, I ran a 7:16 for a 5K vs. 2 miles. WTF.

See D.
See D run.
See D lollygag.

Dammit.
HOWEVER, it is not all gloom and doom, don't get me wrong. I set out my goals and beat them all.
1. Finish in under 1:00:00
Check. - 0:59:42
2. Beat Ms. Lord
Check.
Me - Second Place
Her - Third Place 1:02:23

I came out of the swim second, which is about normal for me, but out of transition third!! (I think I need to consider going without socks and trying the flying mount thingie).

Really tried to push it hard on the bike. As soon as we got through the first big up hill and were headed into the flats, I nestled in behind the second place cyclist. She seemed like she was going hard and I thought I would just try to hang with her (3 bike lengths back of course). But as I was hanging out back there, I realized, hey -- I'm hanging out..NOT working hard. What am I doing, just waiting here for Tracy to come get me? WTH? I grabbed a bigger gear, stood on my pedals and got my pass on. If she wants me, she's going to have to come and get me. I got back into second position despite the serious head wind on the back side with the rolling hills. (Second on the bike split also.)


I was in and out of transition with no sight of Tracy, however there was another gal on my rack who came in right behind me and I was like whoa - who is that? shit? I'd better giddyap! I started my run with the plan of just shaking out my legs for the first half mile as my calves were feeling a little crampy. Short strides and quick turnover. Quick feet, quick feet -- I kept thinking to myself and I heard this new chick fall in behind me. Crap. No rest for the weary. Let's go. The first half mile was hard, but I remembered a quote JJ told me that Desiree says, "If it's hard for me, it's killing her." I channeled that and kept pushing. I could hear her breaths getting harder and more labored. "hard for me...killing her" Push. Push. And then it was getting quieter behind me. I knew she wasn't able to keep up. Sweet!! I kept it up until I was sure I couldn't hear her anymore and then I relaxed and tried to focus on the finish.

I got to the turn, flipped a U and started scanning the other side for the new chick and Tracy. When I passed Tracy going the other way, I knew I had put enough distance on her...she wasn't going to catch me today. Not today my friend. Locked into cruise control and headed home.

As I was rounding the final corner where all the supporters were I could hear people cheering for some woman behind me, tell her to pick it up, pour it on. Uh Oh! I thought..some woman trying to out kick me? I don't think so. Came out of the turn and poured it on. Shorey and JJ yelling: "Kick now! Go D!" Spectators were cheering hard. Crap! A sprint off at the finish! Go, D, GO! Passed the T3 tent and got LOTS of cheers from my new T3 friends: "Go Dionn! Nice Stride! Big Finish!" Came charging down the finish, even had the J&A banner to run through at the finish line! YAY!!!

Checked the watch...just under 1 hour. Sweet. A look behind me. No Ms. Lord in sight. Phew. Turns out the woman behind me, Tiffany, was in the age group below me. She must've racked on the wrong rack!

Met my age group winner, Shelly, and we congratulated each other on a good, hard race. Tracy came up and we high fived each other for a good race as well. Me, her rabbit, she for pushing me. All in all, a good outing.
Official Stats:
Chip Time: 0:59:42
AG Place: 2nd
Gender Place: 13th
Overall Place: 80th


Today's lesson - don't spend all your time looking in the rear view mirror about what MIGHT be happening because sometimes you might miss the opportunity right in front of you that SHOULD be happening.

OH!! (before I get a nasty note from Wiley) -- here's a picture of my hardware!
There's actually a set of four of those discs..I think they are coasters!! Who wants to join me for some celebratory bevies??

ps.-> Greg B. of T3, I now own the Scenic Brook neighborhood bragging rights. Better bring your "A" game to CapTex my friend.



Friday, May 9, 2008

Performance Anxiety

It's weird....I've been a performer ALL my life..and I do mean all, yet it has only been recently that I get nervous about performing.

Dance in front of a packed stadium or arena? No problem.
Dance half-naked on national tv while the partners of your consulting firm look on? No problem.
Sing to a full house? No problem.
Piano recital? No problem.
Argue information systems strategy with Andy Grove in front of Stanford's best and brightest? No problem.
IPO presentation on sales and marketing strategy to investment bankers? No problem.

So, what's the freakin' deal with getting all anxious over racing? I mean really, WTH?

I noticed it significantly just prior to the marathon in Feb. And I'm really feeling it again now.

I didn't feel it before Spenco, but the Rookie has me all a twitter. I'm thinking about the goals I've set, but mostly I think it's about my perceived level of expectation from family, friends, my coach, etc. And I think I don't want to disappoint anyone...or myself.

I've focused on my run all winter, so I SHOULD be faster on the run.
Jack pimped by ride, so I SHOULD be faster on the bike.
I've been training hard, so I SHOULD be faster overall.
I SHOULD be ready to kick some ass. I SHOULD do better than last year.
I SHOULD, I SHOULD, I SHOULD.

What if I don't?

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

No...

I don't find it "refreshing" or "invigorating" or "rejuvenating".

I find it "bracing" and just plain ol' "take my breath away, cold!"

Why O WHY did I let Erin convince me to swim in Barton Springs today?

I know I need to get acclimated to cold water as the freakin' debacle otherwise known as CapTex is right around the corner..

But that doesn't mean I have to like it.

I didn't really need a swim workout on top of my quality run today, but I know I needed to get my head straight around the frigid temps. So I agreed to get in and swim for a couple of laps.

Yes, I wore my wetsuit. (I will for CapTex..and as Mark likes to say, practice as you Tri!) It was still cold.

Yes, I breathed every left stroke. It was all I could do to keep my heartrate under control between the temps and all the floating icky things above the water and the swimming icky things below the water.

Yes, I felt like my wetsuit was strangling me at times. But I kept on swimming...knowing all of this stupid shit is in my head.

I have issues. I know. I'm owning it. Working on it. Bear with me. Sigh.

I seriously don't know how you people do it. More power to you, I say.

Monday, May 5, 2008

The MAZE -- My first Trail Race Race Report!

Amazing. That was a complete blast people. I can see how you trail-er trash get hooked. SO MUCH FUN!! Of course, I only did the 10k...the 30k might not have been nearly as much fun.

Nonetheless, I had an absolutely wonderful experience!

Erin and I decided that we would just run easy...being that this was our first trail race and all. And considering our trail running experience is limited at best.

It was a gun start, so all the big kids lined up at the front and E and I placed ourselves somewhere respectably in the middle. But as the race began, we both realized that we could easily go quicker than the pace we were currently going.

The trouble with trail running is that, well, you are on a trail. Mostly single file. So in order to pass, you have to be very strategic, be willing to take on some shrubbery, and do some interval work.

So I dodged and weaved my way through some traffic until I came upon a couple whose pace looked good to me and I just glommed on to them. The looked like veteran trail runners, so I figured I'd just do what they did. When they passed folks, I passed folks. When they slowed down on the uphills, I slowed down too.

I followed them for probably the first couple of miles...which I'm finding is about how long it takes me to warm up. So at this time I felt like I had more get up and go, so I went. I found an opportunity on an uphill and went for it.

Now, if you've ever run with me, you know I have a long, loping, high stride...which seems pretty suited to trails apparently since I'm pretty much to bounding over rocks, roots and stuff with my natural stride. Go figure. So on this one up hill the couple started picking their way up the right side by stepping on several rocks that were jutting out here and there. I, on the other hand, went up the left side..planting my left foot once, leaping half way up the hill to land on my right, bounding off that one and BOOM left foot on the top of the hill..the couple still lightly stepping there way up the right hand side. Buh-bye.

And just ahead I saw Bill Carroll and Amy...both who also appeared to me to be veterans at this trail running thing. Glom opportunity #2!! I settled in behind Bill who was behind Amy. Where he stepped, I stepped. I know I was supposed to be watching the trail markings, signs and flags to make sure I didn't get lost, but I figured those two know what the hell they are doing and so what if I get lost...that'd make for a great story anyway.

I followed Bill all the way to the midway aid station. They stopped and had water. I did the same. I told Bill I was just hanging on to their heels and I hoped they didn't mind. He said not at all, but as soon as we began, he turned and said to me, "I'm slowing down...just follow Amy."

"Uh...ok" I thought to myself. oh shit, what have I gotten myself into because as I turned to look for Amy, she was bombing down a hill already. CRAP! "Easier said than done!" I shouted over my shoulder to Bill as I sprinted to catch up to her.

She literally flew down this first hill, seemingly to only use her steps to guide her body in the right direction as she free falled to the bottom. I just put my feet where I saw hers were and caught up to her. We must've passed 5 or 6 people on that single hill who were gingerly picking their way down. I thought wow..I think I just took the express elevator....that was kinda fun!

She kept a good pace and at one point we found ourselves alone for awhile. We even chatted for a bit. She offered encouragement, saying I was doing great for my first trail race. I listened vaguely as my focus was solely on the trail and what her feet were doing. Here's a pic of me (gratis Glenda) following Amy.


As we rounded the corner and headed into the finishing stretch, I could hear a woman coming up behind us. "Amy, we can't let her get us...she's coming!"

"Go ahead!" Amy replied.

I felt like I still had plenty of gas left, so I put my foot on the accelerator and charged. I could feel the other woman pouring it on as well...but I'm a kicker and I'll be damned if you catch me from behind in the last 100 meters! I'll die first.

I came in at 0:59:04.5 gun time (57:57 my watch time). She (Gayle Williams) came in at 0:59:05.4. Amy was right behind her at 0:59:06.2.

That..people...was a blast.

Followed that with cheering and libations as we watched our 30k friends finish (including Lulu and Wiley) and spent the afternoon chillin in the park, having bevies and gnoshing on snacks. What an awesome day.
Special thanks, of course, to our friends who came out to cheer us on and take pics! Y'all rock! :)

Thanks Austin.




Friday, May 2, 2008

Maiden Voyage

So, I couldn't stand it. I had to take it out for a test ride. My new Garmin of course.

HOW MUCH FUN!!

It tracked extremley closely to my bike computer (within .01 miles), so I'm guessing that it works! Then when I got back, I linked it up to my computer (course all I had to do was walk in the office and it started transmitting..YAY!) and uploaded to the training center.

Here's a chart of my ride:

I'm really looking forward to a long run with it so I can dial in on some paces!

Word has it that the Rogue Store is having their inventory shipped to them on May 7th. I'm not saying, I'm just saying....

But if you can't wait...I got mine from REI.com and used my dividend! They come in black or green. (But no pink..wth?)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

It's Here, IT'S HERE!!


I'm SOOOOOO Excited!! But how frustrating that I have to wait at least 3 hours for it to charge. GRRRRRR!!!!
Call me a geek, dork, nerd or whatever. But I can't wait to play with my new toy. YAY for ME!