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Archive for March, 2009

Moe’s Revenge

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

At Donna’s house they have a lizard name Lester. At our house we also have a lizard, who till this moment was not named. Thanks to Jocelyn he now has a name, Moe.

The other night Moe surprised me when I went to the kitchen, he was hanging out in the middle of the living room, probably trying to figure out how to turn on the television without a remote. Abi, Lucie and I had been struggling with that for weeks. No remote may seem like a minor inconvenience, but sometimes after a super long session, we would sit on the couch dead tired, staring at the TV for half an hour before we realized it was not on. Then we would debate about who’s turn it was to get up and turn it on and switch the channels. Often we just settled for staring at the lovely wallpaper instead.

I think Moe also lost the turning on the TV battle and out of spite pooped on the blue recliner chair in the living room. Gross, I know. I guess those with pets are probably not as grossed out as me, and are used to cleaning up after animals.

Since my roomies had moved I was all alone for a while, and thus had the option of sitting on the couch instead. Hoping Moe didn’t foul on that as well.

Now I have moved downstairs, and acquired new roomies, LC and Donna, and a new Lizard, Lester. And they have a remote control for the TV, yipeee. Let the fun begin.

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Abi trying to work the TV without getting out of the recliner. Unfortunately her legs are just not quite long enough.

A couple of post race pics

Sunday, March 29th, 2009

Lucie is much better at actually making use of a camera, and was kind enough to pass on a couple of photos. Thanks Lucie.

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Blue no more

Friday, March 27th, 2009

I have had some requests for more photos, and also more info about where we are staying while at training camp in the Philippines. We are staying on what used to be the US base here in Subic Bay, on top of a hill of course. It makes the end of bike rides or runs a fun decision, choice A- the not so steep but very bumpy road, choice B- much longer and steeper hill but buttery smooth, and choice C- the longest option but the shortest hill. Of course all the hills have seemed to shrink as our time here goes on, which is a nice thing.

We used to live in a blue house. It was easy to spot, since in the row of houses each one was a different colour, yellow, green, pink, and blue. I am not very good at directions or paying attention so was always grateful for a nice visual cue. But when we returned from the race in Singapore I looked for our blue house, and couldn’t find it. There is a new face-lift operation going on, and our place is being painted! Every morning there are a ton of painters all over the place, on the roof washing it, up the ladders outside our windows, in the stairwells, all very cheery with their “hello m’am”. I was wondering what colour it would end up. They must have heard team TBB was staying there since now it is white with hot pink accents!

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The original look of the houses. Our house is just around the bend, you can see a tiny bit of blue in the left hand corner. That’s how my runs finish, looking for the blue.

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And now it’s pink.

Singapore 70.3+ the almost mile back to the hotel afterwards

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

I had a fun weekend, jet setting across Asia, for a weekend in Singapore. There was a half Ironman there this past weekend, and since now I am starting to look and train a bit more like a real athlete it was time to get in a training race, and shake things up a bit.

Singapore was modern, clean, fun, and not nearly as hot as I had expected. There were thunderstorms each afternoon leading into race day, and carried on through race morning. Luckily enough although the race started off grey and wet, it got clearer and sunnier as the day went.

I was excited to take my new team TBB race suit for an outing. I had an ok swim start, but ok isn’t good enough these days and I ended up swimming completely solo, just behind the front group of men and women.It was a lonely swim, just my new Blue Seventy Speed suit, and some jellyfish to keep me company. Yes, the jellyfish. Part way into the second lap I got a pretty nasty ocean kiss from a jelly fish, right across my cheek and lips. I had never been stung before so wasn’t sure if I was very allergic or not. So I figured I would wait and see, and if my eyes started swelling shut I would know. I powered through the first transition, a couple of people in sight, still able to breathe and see, so I figured it was game on, jellyfish or not. I later found out that pretty much most of the field had some run ins with the stingers, just some got it worse than others. I wonder if Blue Seventy could make me a balaclava for the next jelly fish swim.

The bike was a flat out and back loop, three times. I just put my head down and worked the pedals, trying to dodge others as the course got a bit busier each lap. A flat bike is not really easier than a hilly one. It is so constant, there is no break to coast, or change cadence, and it can be tougher to stay focused. But somehow the 90 km flew by and as I got off the bike I realized I had caught Andrea Hewit who had been riding in the lead with Jodi Swallow most of the race. That was a nice surprise.

The surprise continued when I managed to get into my shoes, and out of transition still within sight of Hewit. And shortly thereafter passed her, running into second place. I felt pretty good, at first anyway. As the 21 km run dragged on however I weakened a bit in the legs, and in the head, and a buffer I had built over third place was gone by the third and final lap. Hewit re-payed my earlier pass and I finished third.

I have never really travelled with a team, or been at a race as part of a group. It was a new way to see things, and pretty interesting to see how people I have been training and hanging out with for weeks turn it on on race day. There was Jocelyn, who is the best team mascot we could ask for. Nobody is friendlier, or willing to dye their hair pink for a race, and nobody looked tougher on the run, other than the Mini Terminator LC. Our new pink race kits were pretty easy to spot, except when LC flew by on the run, it was just a pink blur. Lucie defended our swim lane honor by out-swimming a World Cup swimmer who was a bit too cocky, and then she smiled her way through a tired race. Another smiley face belonged to Cam, who was on sightseeing run duty, on orders to take it easy on his feet that day. The jellyfish must have conspired to really make it tough for our top guns Rebekah and Renaldo, who had a rough go that day. Manny was a machine, although he probably doesn’t remember half the race, I have never seen anyone look like a cadaver while still running, his face was the most bizarre colour of grey-white I have ever seen. He gets the toughing it out award.

Now I am back in Subic, for a few more weeks before the next race adventure in China. The group here is much smaller now, since many are off to go race around the world. I will be cheering for them in two weeks, when there are 3 races and I think 9 people racing. Wow, I hope I have enough energy for cheering and training.

Iron Chef

Monday, March 16th, 2009

I am lucky enough to be staying with 2 super chics here at camp. Lucie, whom I have known forever, and Abi who I just met when she arrived one night with her bike box and a huge knapsack and nothing else. It has been fun getting to know Abi, who was a bit quiet and reserved at first, but now she is a blast, and even funnier when she lets her inner bitch come out a wee bit sometimes.

The first few weeks here she would cook up super healthy feasts each night. Stir fry veggies with tofu, rice, eggs and who knows what else. Meanwhile Lucie and I had already slipped into the opening a can of tuna, or pouring a bowl of cereal dinner mode. Abi still chefs it up once in a while, but definitely has slipped a bit. She has however taught me a couple of new additions to my menu, which I am happy for. I used to cook oats in the morning, plain old oatmeal, with perhaps some raisins, borrrring. Abi starts working on breakfast the night before, when she puts some rolled oats in water or milk and they soak overnight. In the morning after nailing another workout, since she is superhuman here and has yet to show even a slightly off day, she adds everything but the kitchen sink. Her additions are pretty extensive, yogurt, dried fruit, fresh fruit, cereal, coconut, honey and anything else she finds. It often looks better than an ice cream sundae. So after a few experiments I am also on the soak the oats bandwagon, and my favourite combo is adding yogurt, dried cherries and cranberries, some fresh mango and a bit of dry cereal.

The second meal is a simple on, cheese and tomato sandwich with……… Doritos. Not on the side, but in the sandwich. Now, I am not a Doritos fan, so I tried out a few other chips, barbecue, regular, ripple and flat, and nothing was quite right. I finally added the Doritos, and voila… Abi certainly knows what she is doing.

Before you think I am totally incompetent in the kitchen, when at home I am known to whip up some fresh baked yummies, and try almost any new recipe. But when I am away I get quite lazy, and take it like a mini kitchen vacation. So I am happy for some simple new ideas from Abi, the ironwoman chef.

Below is a picture of Lucie on the left, and Abi on the right, modelling the new race gear.

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I love paddles…….

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

I had heard that paddles are a must here at camp. It was one of the few “must have” pieces of equipment that we were told to bring. So I dusted off some paddles I found in my swim bin, from eons ago, and have not take them off since. I have swum more meters with paddles in the past month then I have all my swim career. And although I am an ok triathlon swimmer, once I put on those black pieces of plastic the water seems to turn to quicksand, and my arms into twigs and I start swimming backwards. I get lapped, I get passed, I get my paddles knocked off, I just suck, plain and simple. But it will make me stronger…it will make me faster…..it will give me arms of steel.

There was a swim set a few days ago where I suddenly had a glimpse of hope, I felt strong, there may have even been a wake behind me I felt that quick. I started to hope that maybe I was onto something, that perhaps there was hope for me.

Of course two days later I plummeted to a new low, missing 90% of the pace times in my lane, with the dreaded paddles. Now swimming a 4 km continuously gives you lots of time to think. First comes rage at others… why are they swimming so darn quick? Then rage at myself… why am I swimming so damn slow? Then pity…. I really suck, and am too tired and weak. Then rebellion… I am going to take this pull buoy and toss it in the other lane, then I am going to take the paddles and throw them out of the pool! Of course they will probably boomerang right back to me, knock me in the head and I will get what I deserve. Then comes acceptance…. ok, I will just keep on plugging away, maybe suddenly time will jump ahead an hour and the set will be over.

This brings me back to a reminder about “patience-the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without angry or upset. Ok, so I am delayed on making the pace time with my paddles, I suffer because my arms are weak, and I am in trouble when I lose patience and think that I can fix it in a week. So rather than be angry or upset I will learn to love my paddles……. I will learn to love my paddles…..I just had to write a little blog to remind myself that the workouts that we find the toughest are the best for us. So I must learn to love swimming with paddles.

And I will try to think happy pool thoughts. Notice I am still in the pool, not enough energy to climb out while Rebekah and LC are half way out already.

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All the colours of speed

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009

It is very cool to be on a team that is riding Cervelo bikes. But for me it is not such a new experience. I have been very lucky, and riding Cervelo for a long, long time. Thanks to a hubby that is a “bike maniac” I am working my way through a rainbow of bikes. Before you think that I haven’t loved each one and am too fast to replace them, they each went to a very, very good new home, and got tons of love. Chris won’t ever let one of our bikes be placed on a roof rack, or a bike rack outside the car. His theory is that you don’t strap your kids on top of the roof, so how can you put a bike there. I often sit on half a seat, squeezed in between bike wheels, while the bikes get a nice comfy drive. Here are a few pictures.

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