Sunday, December 28, 2008

It's Almost...

TIME!  The official end of the off-season starts at 12:01 a.m. on January 1st.  

Mentally... I don't think I've ever been MORE ready to get to work.  Its taken a LOT of self-discipline, a really messed-up shoulder, and the plague to keep me from training over the last two months.  Having said that... I'm really glad to have had the adversity that has kept me from training.  Honestly... it would have been a total mental and physical disaster had I jumped back into training 2 weeks after Clearwater.

Physically, I'm confident that my body will catch-up in good order after a relative 2 month deficit. Or at least that's what I've been told.  This is where having a coach like Liz REALLY pays off.  I know that I won't jump in and overdo it... simply b/c she won't let me.  Which ultimately means that in the long-run... I'll be faster AND injury free!  All good things. Swimming is being put on an indefinite hold.  Turns out that I probably shouldn't have raced in Clearwater... did a little more damage that was prudent and now my recovery time is quite a bit longer.  I'm doing all the right things... 2 different physical therapists with two different approaches... as well as resting and only doing specific exercises that'll get things ship-shape. Liz feels confident that I should be able to put the kind of swim together that I want at Coeur D'Alene despite getting a late start in the pool this year.  Another "blessing" with not being able to swim immediately is that it will give me an opportunity to really focus and strengthen the two other disciplines!

I read something about fear this morning.  "Anyone that stands at the edge of the unknown, fully in the present, without reference point, experiences groundlessness."  Seriously, read that again.

So here's the connection: I'm standing at the edge of training for a full ironman in June.  I have no personal reference point.  I'm completely scared shitless.  But here's the thing...  I.  Don't. Care.  We usually think that bravery is based on being fearless.  The reality is, those that are brave... are intimate with fear.

Let's be brave this season... shall we?


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Gingerbread Houses are for....


Right? RIIIIIIGHT??? I mean REALLY! What is the POINT of decorating a beautiful house MADE of things like gingerbread and frosting and gumdrops and whatever the hell ELSE ya wanna put on the dang thing if you're just going to LOOK at it??? No really. Answer me that.

I'm talkin to you.

Speak up.

Answer me.


Be quiet when I'm talking to you.

OK! SO the point of a gingerbread house is to have FUN with your family while you're putting the thing together... THAT'S the point right? I guess for some it might be to get as anal retentive as possible, placing things just so.... and completely SUCKING the life out of the project... and that's... okay. Whatever floats your boat... but the point is... if it brings you together... and you have fun... then THAT'S the point!

Now THAT is a gingerbread HIZOUSE!

AND... we had a BALL!

I hope everyone is happy and healthy and getting ready to celebrate a fantastic holiday with friends and family! Do some fun stuff! Play Twister... bring your "A" game! Sing some Karaoke... from the top of your freakin lungs... b/c HEY! They're family... and they can't disown ya for that! Hm.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Snow Daze!

Apparently, we Eugeneians don't know how to deal with a little smattering of snow! Once you get an accumulation of any significance... as in 3 inches... the entire city shuts down and calls it good. We are simply NOT prepared like you crazy people in states like... I dunno... MN... where a 13 degree day with freezing rain is "mild". However, Eugene is a city where, on any given cold, rainy day, you'll find 75.2% of the population wearing Birkenstocks with their wool socks. H2O in liquid form... we're solid... but once that stuff even remotely resembles snow... we freak out! As a result, we've had an inordinate amount of no school days! Now, I know that as a loving father I'm supposed to say, "I LOVE snow days! It's just a great opportunity to take time out with the kids, play in the snow, and drink hot cocoa!" This is ALL quite true. However, I have to say, the noise... yeah... the noise of the three adorable, wonderful, fantastic kiddos, who are EXTREMELY excited to NOT have school AND get to play in the snow can be overwhelming at times. I'm good for about 2 full days... then I need a BREAK! No such luck today. No school. Another beautiful layer of the fresh white stuff on the ground! Joy. Rapture. PLUS, starting at 9 am this morning... I enter the realm of single father for the weekend! No rest for the weary... but I think I'm up for it... I've done it a million times before... just not in the snow. This is a perfect opportunity for me to practice... breathing.

In other news, my shoulder is turning out to be a complete A-HOLE! That's RIGHT! That's what I said! Apparently, a dislocated shoulder doesn't simply heal on its own OR within a week after its been injured. I've tried reasoning with it, stretching, massaging, and drugging it into submission... all to no avail. Apparently, what it wants is rest... the little pansy. So that's what I'm giving it! Plus some witch doctor physical therapy that ends up hurting so bad it makes me curl into the fetal position, suck my thumb, and whine like a little baby! BUT, apparently its working... and things are getting better! SO... as my upper body wastes away... I'm doing my best to be patient and keep my legs in some kind of working order so that I wont DIE December 29th when I start my training cycle for IM CdA '09.

Hope you're all happy, healthy, and whole. If you have family coming in for the holidays... remember, they love you and their intentions are ALWAYS the best... even if they're SO annoying you'd rather punch them in the neck. Simply....


Tom! He's dah MAN!

Snow-covered homestead!

View from living room!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Off Season!

I posted this pic on my FB profile.  You'd be surprised by the reaction I got.  People actually made FUN of it!  Really.  I'm not kidding. Personally, I just don't think people understand how truly street I am.

Anywho.  The off season continues.  I took an entire 2 weeks completely off from any sort of physical activity following Clearwater.  I wanted to give my body adequate time to recover from the race as well as make sure that things were kosher with my shoulder.  I started back in the gym after that with some light weights and core work.  I'm actually VERY hungry to train... but my shoulder is having none of that!  I finally went in to see a PT and she worked me over pretty good.  It's going to be a process.  Hopefully one that doesn't last too long.  I told her that I absolutely HAVE to be swimming by January 1st.  I'm being a "good boy" and doing exactly as I'm told and trying to heal up as best I can.  The hardest part is sleeping.  I haven't had a truly good night's sleep since coming back from Florida and its really beginning to get to me.  I just can't find a position that's comfortable and as a result, toss and turn and moan and groan all night long.  NOT my idea of fun.  BUT... it is what it is right?  I'm doing everything I can possibly do to heal properly and in a timely manner.  So... I'm breathing... and I'm attempting to be patient... and attempting to listen.  I'm not perfect... but I'm trying.  Here's the thing about patience though... everyone only has so much.  Right?  I mean, at some point, don't all of us need to blow a gasket.  Throw a little fit?  

Gee.  I guess that's all I got.  It's a beautiful, chilly, sunny Saturday morning.  I am getting a workout today... just nothing involving my shoulder.  Anyone want to come along?  Could use the company...

OH!  I forgot to tell you!  If you want someone else's perspective on my Clearwater trip and all the chaos that ensued... please go visit Liz's blog HERE!   Its a total riot!  Liz writes really well... and to see it through another set of eyes is really fun!

Hope you're all happy, healthy, and whole.  All you couples out there... get out with your partner.  Get a sitter.  Maybe even organize a standing Saturday night date.  I don't care if you're tired... get out there.  Have fun.  Hm.