Sunday, 17 August 2008

No Races in Sight...

That is a self-portrait I took while waiting to start the Anchorage half-marathon .  It was so cold and pouring rain.  I had this on my phone and forgot all about it until a day or so ago while I was going through the pics on my phone and ran into this one...

I am having a hard time staying motivated.  Once you get in the habit of having a huge race/challenge ahead, it is hard to get out and run a measly 3 miles with no big goal in mind.  I thought perhaps running shorter distances on a frequent basis would be a good thing to do.  So that is what I am trying to do.

I have had a bit of set back in that my back is hurting.  I went to the doc 2 weeks ago and had a CT scan last week.  I should find out tomorrow what the result of that is.  I had an ACDF (Anterior Cervical Discectomy and Fusion of C5-6, and C6-7) in 1999 and my doc was afraid that I did something to all the stuff in my neck - and that they would have to "go back in" and get it fixed.  Oh my.  I SO don't want anyone going back "into" my cervical spine.  

So I am still running.  I really want to run the Boulder Back Roads (half) marathon on Sept. 21 - but I better find out what is going on with my back.

Oh, and on the weight loss front... I am down 6.6 lbs.  That may not sound like a lot to anyone but me, but I know my body and 6.6 is a lot for me to lose.  I am a slow loser!  I feel like I am on a good slow steady progression.  And after watching the Olympic Marathon last night, I realized that I would rather look like a runner than a shotput!

Friday, 8 August 2008


There's me, finishing the triathlon last Sunday.  And that is the first race photo I have purchased since 2004.  I love the photo for a couple of reasons.  The first reason is that I was finishing a triathlon with energy left.  What a fabulous feeling!  The second reason I probably shouldn't share, but I will.  I think I look good.  There!  I said it!

I had a bit of a revelation during the race.  I got to stand around with women of my own age as we prepared for the race, as we participated in it, and as we finished up and headed for home.  Somehow I have this idea that if I were thin enough or in better shape, I would look like a 20 year old model.  Here were these women, within a few years of my age, in swimming suits, wet suits, running clothes and bike clothes.  This stuff doesn't hide anything.  No one looks like a 20 year old model.  But they are beautiful athletic women!  And none of them look 20 years old. By the time we are post 55 years old, we all have something going on.  Bellies, arm flab, dimpled legs and bottoms.

BUT WE ARE BEAUTIFUL!  I am so glad to say this.  It probably sounds wacky to those of you still in your 20s or 30s.  But it is a revelation to me.  A happy revelation.

There is other stuff going on, but I am just so dang happy to say, I am a fit, happy, and dare I say beautiful? woman!  Happy, I tell you!

Sunday, 3 August 2008

Tri for the Cure, 2008

It was a wonderful day at the triathlon.  The times have not been posted yet.  I had problems in almost everything... but still, it was great.

I got to the park at 5:15, and joined the line of women with backpacks and bikes... walking... walking... into the park.  Then the frantic rush to set up your transition area.  Knowing full well that it will be squished into non-existence before the swim start.  It was 70º already at 5 a.m., and the water was a very comfortable 74º.  

The swim was different in that I never found a spot to swim without being kicked and elbowed.  I was constantly being mowed over.  It was uncomfortable.  I could not see the buoys either, so I felt like I was swimming blind.  I ended up doing the breast stroke a lot - just so I could see what was ahead.  The first stretch of the swim, we were heading straight east - into the rising sun.  It was blinding.  My goggles added to the problem.  I had to stop at a swim angel, hang on a noodle and lick the lenses of my goggles.  Thank you Swim Angel!  My time for the swim was (estimate) 28 some minutes.

I have no idea how long the T1 took.  It didn't seem long. I hopped on my bike, surprised that my legs seemed to not be wobbly like I think they will be when I am done swimming.  I headed out and enjoyed the ride - until I made the mistake of gearing into granny gear on a big hill.  When I tried to take it out of granny gear, the chain fell off.  I quickly hopped off the bike, turned it over, and then the ty-rap holding my computer broke.  So after I got the chain back on, I held the computer in my hand for the rest of the ride.  I think I did the ride in about 48 minutes.  Not sure though.

T2 wasn't as bad as I expected either.  I grabbed my garmin, a gu, my iPod, and headed out.  I was quickly told, in no uncertain terms, that iPods were banned from the race.  I headed back to my transition area to put my iPod back in my backpack.  You know, I was really P.O.'d about that (because I think that should have been posted on the website or in their info, since they have always allowed them before) - but I didn't miss it at all.  

I started walking, and realized that I was walking pretty fast.  I decided to run.  I was running OK.  I probably ran about half of the 5K.  I enjoyed myself.  It was getting really hot by then - thank God I am over 55 and was in the 4th wave.  There were still people swimming when I was running... I felt bad for them because the day just kept getting hotter.  

Some lady in front of me kept yelling what I guess she thought was encouragement - "think of a cold margarita!  A cold beer!  A cold martini!"  over and over and over again.  I finally shouted, "think of an air conditioned AA meeting!"  I don't think she liked that, but holy crap, not everyone is motivated by alcoholic beverages!  


I got back to the transition area with my buds - I SO love being with women my own age!  I was dancing, and they were wondering what was wrong with me.  Heck, I still felt good.  

But you know, compared with a half-marathon, running a 5K is really pretty quickly over.  

So, I had a good day.  I am glad.  I needed one.  I am sure my times were not good, but I enjoyed myself, and isn't that what this is about?

And, on a serious note:  when my mother was my age nearly exactly, she had just been diagnosed with cancer and had just undergone a surgery to remove a kidney... which proved futile, she was dead 6 months later.  I kept thinking about her as I swam, biked, and ran.  I am grateful that I get to be an alive person, healthy, and happy.  This one's for you Mom.