Sunday, August 23, 2009

Fair Time!!!

Every year, during the 3rd week of August, Eugene welcomes the Lane County Fair! The fair is something that we've gone to EVERY year as a family for the last 12 years... we LOVE the fair!The fair is our opportunity to spend ridiculous amounts of money, eat "dirty" food, ride questionably safe, rickety rides, and observe the local, cultured clientele with varying numbers of teeth! Yeah. We fit right in. The only difference between yesterday's fair fest and previous year's was that our money... well... it didn't go as far as it did last year. 8 tickets of a single ride???? That's just crazy talk! Anyway... we still managed to have a fantastic time... so enjoy a few pics of the fam!

Looks FUN huh? It was!

Training continues at a subdued level... which fits in just perfectly. My schedule for next year is beginning to solidify... and I'm truly looking forward to hitting it pretty hard starting in Jan of 2010.

Thank you for taking the time to read! Hope you're all happy, healthy, and whole.


Monday, August 17, 2009

Trying to...

keep it close to real.

Ya know... sometimes you just can't write from your heart... but you want to write anyway and you end up editing a whole bunch of CRAP. So here's the thing. This is my happy place. This is where I come to share my experiences in life as they relate to my chosen sport... and that is where it needs to stay. If you've noticed over the last year and a half... the quantity and, in my opinion, quality of my posts have faltered. Ya know... I love writing about what I learn of people, places, and things... as well as myself... while I'm out training and racing. SO... time to refocus!

Take today for example. Here I am trying to figure out how to train... while not really "training"! What the hell is THAT? I don't train to make myself healthy or pretty... I train so that I can race. I train so that I can peel the onion just one more layer. I train b/c I NEED TO! No really... I'm kind of messed up on a daily basis... but if I'm not training.... I'm REALLY messed up. So my quandary is... how do I stay focused if I'm not planning on racing for the remainder of the year? Answer? Next year. Right? I mean... I suppose I could drop all this knowledge my muscles have gained in the last 3 years of participating in this sport right? I could just start over early next year? Does that make ANY sense to anyone? I don't care what's going on in the rest of my life... I'm not starting over. SO... I'm focused on maintaining my base so that when I start into a new cycle early next year... I'll be ready to go. I will take about a month off from anything structured in either November or December... for "deep recovery" as Coach Liz calls it... but other than that... I'm just going to plug along and make it happen as close to 6 days a week as I can. Believe me... everyone will be happy about that.

So today I hit the pool and put in 2,600 meters of quality work. I'm really falling in love with my paddles and leg bands. When I pull with those things... I feel SUPER fast! I'm really enjoying the pool. Kind of like the "padpadpadpad" of my feet when I run... the outside world falls away with each stroke... its calm, fluid, rhythmic, strong, quietquietquietquiet. Ya know... its a common lesson in living meditation... only do exactly what you're doing in that moment. For instance... if you're doing the dishes... ONLY do the dishes. Don't think about what you're going to be doing the second you finish doing the dishes... just do the freakin dishes. So when I'm swimming, biking, or running... that's exactly what I do... I do the dishes. Uh. You know what I mean.

Plans are forming for next year. I'm putting Ironman in my back pocket until 2011. I'll be focusing on short-course in the early season to develop a little more speed. After that I'll have a couple of key 70.3s lined up for late July through August with the ultimate goal of reaching Worlds again... not dislocating my shoulder... and actually being able to truly race it! VERY excited about having a general outline of a plan! Stay tuned... I'll hopefully be traveling for all of this... MN, CA, WA, IL... the list goes on... and I WILL expect free places to stay. Don't worry... I'm skinny and don't take up much space.

That's it for now! Thanks for taking the time to read. Hope you're all happy, healthy, and whole.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Nothing Deep!

Holy CRAP! I just re-read yesterday's post! Heavy huh? Sorry about that. Sometimes you just don't know when its going to hit you... nor do you know exactly what's going to come out. Having said that... I apparently had the need to vent a bit and in the end... writing has helped me find a smidgen of clarity. I'm still not convinced that this was the appropriate forum to do it in... but screw it... its out there... and it is what it is.

ANYWHO! I'm on what one might call, a modified maintenance training regimen. I just made that up. Essentially... I do what I want when I feel like it. I swim, I bike, I run... for no particular reason other than the fact that I enjoy it.... AND... my head will freaking explode if I don't. Now, how long will THAT last? I have no clue... but it's working for me at the moment. Its no secret that working out for, "general health benefits", doesn't float my boat. I wish it did... it would probably simplify my life quite a bit... but its the competition that gets my juices flowing... that's just how I'm wired. SO... while I'm doing the "training"... my mind is racing with different ideas about how I'd like to structure next year's training and racing. LOTS of ideas swirling around in my head... ranging from full IM to 70.3 to focusing on AG nationals as a goal. The Lifetime Fitness series keeps popping into my head too... Mmm Hmm... yeah. I dunno... the possibilities are endless and its really fun for me to think about! Stay tuned...

Today was different. I just ran... empty headed. Had a good quality run! Hopped out of the car somewhere around Rice Valley, stripped down, threw on my shoes, and took off. It was roughly 82 degrees and sunny out... and it was just me... my breathing... and that sound. You know the one... "patpatpatpatpatpatpatpat".... your feet rhythmically tapping the hot asphalt. Nothing in my head... just the task at hand. I was running while I ran... that's all... and it was bliss.

Thanks for taking the time to read. Hope you're all happy, healthy, and whole.


Sunday, August 9, 2009



It's constant right? I mean really... the only thing that you can truly count on in this world is that things will continually adapt, adjust, convert, fluctuate, modulate, transfigure, transmute, vacillate, and metamorphose. (I think my favorite is "metamorphose").

Ok... so... change. You'd think that by the shear nature of its constancy we'd figure it out. You'd think that we'd accept it in its natural course and meet it with open arms. The problem is... not all change is good. Not all change is something that we believe is right. Not all change is right for you or for those around you. AND there are different opinions about what change is good and right and smart... which REALLY throws a hitch in the giddyup! Change is often-times REALLY FREAKIN HARD!!!! Which is why some people are so uncomfortable with it.

So? What do you do when you're met with unwanted change? What do you do when you really truly believe that a particular change is going to be devastating not only to yourself... but also to those that you love and hold closest. Welllllll.... according to that God guy and that Bible book... and a whole bunch of recovering alcoholics... you're supposed to say a prayer that goes a little something like this:

"God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."

POOF! ALL better! Really... what you're doing is giving it up right? The control that you think you have... you're giving it over to God and asking him to grant you acceptance, courage, and wisdom. Asking him to reveal his will... not yours... HIS. Man... I wish it were as easy as saying that little prayer. A very close and dear friend told me the other day that it will reveal itself... with time.

Well... how bout now? No? Now? Nuh uh. Apparently later is better. So I sit, and I fret, and I breathe, and I get angry, and I get sad, and I laugh, and I cry, and I just ride this ride that I'm on attempting to be true to myself. It'll be clear at some point... just not right now. What I do know is that down the road... I'll be able to look back and reflect and know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I have done everything that I could... and that I've handled my business with honor and integrity.

Thanks for taking the time to read. Hope you're all healthy, happy, and whole.