Monday, February 28, 2011

Forgive me...

Ya know, if I seem more out of it than normal. It was a big weekend. And I'm exhausted. I may have blacked out while sitting at my desk today...

Saturday was the Frosty 14 mile trail race. I was really nervous because I haven't run a trail since tecumseh Trail marathon in early December...and my runs haven't been overly long. And I was coming off the second of three hard training weeks. I went out and just decided to stay on the heels of the girl who won Tecumseh. There was a whole line of folks behind us. I stayed with her until about the six mile mark, when I got impatient and went for a pass on an uphill. And I ran scared for the next eight miles. One other guy and i were going back and forth for a bit...and wouldn't ya know, dude outsprinted me in the last 5 meters. I couldn't hear him coming (or my heavy breathing the whole race) because I had some Kanye blasting in my ears.

I ended up 2nd female. And I was really happy with it. It was sooo muddy! It had rained the week leading up to and the course was out and back, so it was slippy, slidey, grab some trees to get up hills kinda running.

And then I went to work at the shop for a few hours.

And Sunday was a nice long ride in preparation for HOS, the crazy 200 miler next month. I set out from home and got in almost 20 miles before meeting up with the Bishops crew for a about 52 miles...and lots of climbs. I'm racing for these guys this year, so it was nice to get out and ride with them. Then, Ack and I went out and did another 20 something miles...before we got dumped on with some big ass rain drops.

Luckily, he has a very awesome wife who came and picked our wet asses up. And I got home, only to devour some food and get some sleep.

More storms ensued in the night and I was awoken by tornado sirens at 5am...

So, yes, I'm tired. And I'm taking the evening off because there are 21 hours on the schedule this week. And I can't wait!

Friday, February 25, 2011

It's all good...i think

So, my little tiny Clubber appears to be doing well. We had blood drawn at the vet on Monday and the results all came back fine. She's been full of spunk and vigor. She gets a little sketchy at night. I think she knows that what occurred wasn't normal and might be a little frightened...dogs are way smarter than we tend to give credit. My senses are also on high alert, so when she awakes every hour and sits up on the edge of the bed, I awake. Sleep has been a bit rough this week...

But training has been pretty fabulous. I even got outside for a 90 minute ride on Wednesday after work with Ack! My dumbass didn't bring shoe covers...and when it's cold enough to wear full-fingered gloves, it's probably cold enough to, at least have toe covers. It was great to be outside though. Because every other day, we've had some torrential downpours. And this morning, it snowed! blah.

Thursday morning, swim practice was lacking some of the super fast guys, so I moved up to a fast lane. And, wow, I love it up there. I get a challenge and I have fun. There were some pulls sets, some fin sets, some kick sets, some fast swimming and all in all, 3700.

Runs have also been going quite well. Last night, I ran straight through the production crew for Clooney's new movie The Ides of March, that they're filming here. I almost stopped and asked one of the security guys why all the trailers and pretty people standing about smoking cigarettes... Glad I didn't because it occurred to me what it was while I was out there.

Tomorrow is the Frosty 14 trail race. And a bunch of my buddies are down the USVI for 8 Tuff miles, which is some insane hill race in paradise. Should be fun for all!

Monday, February 21, 2011

I am not prepared

This blog has always contained a little bit of life and a little bit of training, a lot vulnerability and possibly too much detail.

And this post is none different.

This last week was INCREDIBLE! We, in the Midwest, got a tease of Spring. On Sunday, I got out for close to 70 miles on the bike. It was a ride full of hills and speed and wind. And me sucking the wheel of very strong male rider. Afterward, I was toast! In a really good way. The remainder of the week contained track work and crazy swim sessions and a couple trainer rides. And then came Friday...

I awoke at 2:30am to pee. After tossing and turning for an hour and a half, I just decided to get up and do my long run instead of trying to cram it in before going to the shop on Saturday. Two hours of night running in shorts and a sports bra, watching the city wake up and seeing another freak or two out running in the dark as well. It was the perfect start to a Friday prior to a nice long three day weekend. I rode my bike into work and at 5pm, I was on my way out the door for an hour and a half of daylight riding!

Saturday was at the shop. Everyone gets excited about riding again when it gets nice out, so there wasn't much down time. Clubber and Sid (my dog and Tom;s, the manager, dog) got to hang out all day, greeting customers.
And then I went to pick up the paperwork for the team I'm joining. Yes, I'm racing bikes for a team this year. There are nine of us girls and I'm really excited about the opportunity!

I woke yesterday to ice rain. Ugh. The cold came back. Trainer ride, weights, swim. And then hit the sack early...

when I was awoken by Clubber kicking my head. She likes to overtake my pillows at night. At first, I just thought she was having a dream (sometimes, she runs in her dreams), but when I moved her and realized she was awake, I knew that wasn't the case at all. The actual events that occurred next are blurry. I know I turned on the light. I must've set her down on the middle of the bed because I later realized she urinated right in the middle of it. She was convulsing, legs rigid, kicking, squirning. Immediately, I picked her up and tried to calm her. I took her downstairs, unsure yet what was happening. Her breathing was shallow and rapid. I felt like she was fighting me, so I set her on the floor. She felt over legs sprawled out, tensed up. It was the most horrific scene... I was screaming and crying and holding her as tightly as i could. What seemed like forever, but was likely no more than five minutes, the spasms continued. And I realized what I was witnessing was a seizure.

When it ended, I took her back to bed and did some research on the 'nets on my phone as she snored next to me. It appears to be one of two things: PDE (Pug dog encephalitis) or epilepsy. If it's the first, she doesn't have much time.

I was supposed to have a massage today. And I was so excited about it. But I can't bear to leave her sight. She's been sleeping on my lap all morning.

This is the one little thing that has been a constant in my last eight years. So much has happened in that time. I've been married and divorced, quit a job, got a new job, moved all over the place, bought and sold houses, had roommates, lived alone, trained for IM, run marathons, stumbles, got back up, laughed, cried, hurt, and loved. And she's been there through it all, to help comfort me, sometimes, just to be the reason I get out of bed.

To have a dog is a selfish thing. I realize that. And I've lost a lot of things in this life. And I'm just not prepared to lose this one. And I guess I never thought that day would come.And I'm not saying it has now, but the very thought that it may has me scared.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Broccoli for breakfast

Whoa! What a week! Last Saturday was a six hour ROGAINE with my buddy. For those of you who don't know what this's an orienteering race. Basically, you get a topography map at 1/24,000 to scale, plotted with checkpoints that you must hit to gain points. The faster you make the course and the more checkpoints you hit (or the more you hit with higher points, the higher the points, the more difficult they are to get to) the better off you are. Some trails are marked, some roads are marked, but not all are. And many times, you have to bushwhack.

We had fun! It was wet and cold and we got rain, ice, sleet AND snow throughout the day.
Unfortunately, all that fun bushwhacking through briar patches left me with some not so pretty legs...

Guess it's a good thing that it's winter and mighty cold in these parts so they weren't on for show!

It also just so happened that I had a scheduled recovery week... that means only 11 training hours scheduled! And I needed that because it was also a week of Super Bowl parties, corporate sales meetings and a need a to take some time off the legs after 3 full weeks of pretty intense training.

But....just my luck, my legs were aching the couple days post race (my buddy is a sub-3 hour Pig marathoner, so we were SPRINTINg those last few miles)...and we had a major kick set at swim practice on Tuesday morning. I suck at kicking and I kinda hate it already, so 1k of kicking is brutal, even without the pain setting in. The first few times through the set, I took it easy. Then I realized it was kinda loosening me up (I am ALL endurance, so this shouldn't strike me as odd, but it always does) so for the last couple, I was right there. I just put my head down, kicked and got on.

The next few days are somewhat of a blur. I did train every day. But I also had two work dinners, Wednesday and Thursday evenings. And the start of dinner was close to my typical bedtime on Thursday, so I was out til midnight. Ugh!

After a cleanse, things like NY strip, beer, red wine, creamed spinach, cheesecake, well, let's just say they feel like poison to the body. Friday wasn't the best day I've had. But the good thing about having days where you binge on things you don't typically do, you regain some focus. And you re-ignite a fire for those things that are healthy. And you want to get fitter and faster. Not fatter.

So today, it was an early run, followed by broccoli for breakfast (see! I'm finally tying it in:)) And then oatmeal for lunch (instead of pizza that they ordered at the shop).  Backward? Maybe. But veggies tend to fill me up with the fiber, so I kinda like them in the morn!

And even though I'm working 6 days a week. And I feel INCREDIBLY guilty for leaving Clubby lots of times, I did find that the bike shop work was very gratifying today. I love the people I work with there. And I met lots of new people. Conversed with old friends. And people I didn't even know had an interest told me they're fans of the blog.

So, thanks for reading.

And,'s still like 40 degrees outside. Time for an awesome four hour ride tomorrow!!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Yep, that's right. I'm stylish...

Mike tagged me with a Stylish blogger award. Go visit him. And now, you guys get to learn a little about me (as if I didn't already give you it all). Because of him.
The award involves doing the following:

1. Make a post and link back to the person who tagged you with the award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Award to 7 great bloggers.
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them they've won.

So, yeah, about me:
1. I LOVE to read. Love it. Always have. Memoirs are my fave.
2. I am divorced. I got married very young. And I learned that marriage doesn't fix problems. In fact, it may enhance them.
3. I need alone time. Absolutely NEED it. I mean, if I don't get some every day, I start to flake out and get irritable and crazy. Between working full time at the bank, on Saturdays at the shop, training and a bit of a social life, I don't mind spending weekend nights alone.
4. I like to do crossword puzzles.
5. I haven't been to a salon in over three years. But I love to paint my fingernails, pluck my eyebrows, wear heels and get dolled up.
6. I make cards. I don't know how to describe it, but I paint them. If you want one, send me your address and you will see.
7. I have been to Italy, Belize, Mexico, Canada, Australia...and I'm kinda thinking I'm saving up for Ireland.
And I'm also very behind on blog reading, so if you guys have been tagged, forgive me, but here you are...
Big Daddy Diesel
Matty O
Carolina John
and, last, but certainly not least... Zen (come on, Zen, give us something, ya know, besides half naked chicks:))

Dear PMS,

There are things I enjoy much more than you. I will not allow you to interfere with my race today, as much as you may try to take from my experience of running through the woods. I will do my best to not allow you to interfere with my judgment and get all pissy with my teammate when he gets lost. And I will not succumb to your your whining, driveling ways. My pain tolerance will not be lessened. After that six hours of racing, I will let you win and I will give my body a nice long sleep and not wake it for the purpose of training in the morning.

Many thanks,