Welcome to 2019

There were a couple of things I wanted to be very intentional about going into 2019. I wanted my first morning to start slowly with coffee and a new devotional book. I wanted to listen to “Come Alive” from The Greatest Showman soundtrack. And I wanted to go for a run. That last one was not because it’s January 1st but because it’s the 6 month anniversary of hurting my hip.

The morning was lovely and almost exactly what I wanted. I just listened to my song. But I did not run. My hip has been aching since yesterday and today moved up that scale to actual pain a few times. Given how poorly I felt my last two workouts, coupled with the ouchies and the fact that we were pretty occupied cleaning out/packing up a house most of the day, I decided not to force the issue for the sake of such an anniversary.

I have a rough outline of some 2019 events. Lots of concerts, two races that are paid for and at least one or two more that I want to get on the calendar. I don’t make resolutions (they just cause me to feel guilty) and I’m not setting a “word for the year”. But I do want to continue working on being present in the moment/situation, being intentional in relationships and continuing to chase a few goals. None of that is new. Those are areas I will probably be working on the rest of my life. But it’s nice to take a deep breath on the 1st day of the year and remind yourself that every day (hour…minute…) is a new opportunity.

2018 Review

This week between Christmas and New Years is odd. It doesn’t quite feel like 2018 anymore but it’s not quite 2019 and it’s like this black hole of the year. It’s not BAD. It just is.

I decided instead of a (late) week in review post about a week that had almost nothing to report, I would just do my year in review. This one is mostly for me. I’ll be impressed if you make it through all. the. words.

January 2018

Because of work schedules etc, we started the New Year having our family Christmas. I thought maybe having to be available at 8am would help curb the older boys partying. What ACTUALLY happened was Hubs and I were at a friends’ house until after midnight and *I* nearly died at the 8am start time I scheduled. (I laugh about it. Now.) We spent the rest of the first day with our Good Friends, watching an Indiana Jones marathon. It was a fun way to kick off the new year. I signed up for an indoor mini tri later in the year. And those same friends we started the year with? Well the husband has a January birthday and so does my hubby so we celebrated together with a big meal out.

February 2018

Game night with Good Friends. Winter Olympics. I did my first (and last) tri of the year…a mini indoor. Signed up for my first half marathon later in the year (spoiler: I was not able to do it)

March 2018

Hubs and I made an EPIC road trip to Indianapolis for a friend’s wedding. There is a whole HILARIOUS hotel story that I might have to tell you sometime but will probably rank as one of our funniest, and most disturbing, memories ever. He surprised me on the way home by stopping to visit one of my oldest and best friends. Then Hubs went on his first Africa trip of the year.

April 2018

Started with Easter service with my son and then taking Grandma to her church & lunch. Locked my youngest out of the house. (It was an ACCIDENT.) The youngest was awarded “Student of the Month” – an achievement still memorialized on the refrigerator. I bought new running shoes that I was able to put very few miles on. I went to our work women’s retreat. And it snowed. 

May 2018

We celebrated 9 years of marriage! I attended the first annual Treasure Valley Mission Conference and started to get an inkling of what God wanted me to do locally (it had nothing to do with “missions”). About a week later, God very clearly informed me I should be working with our church’s youth group program…specifically 6th grade girls. Despite my protests that I’m not a “kid person”, I volunteered and promptly started praying for my then unknown co-leaders. (They are AMAZING) I bought a wetsuit in anticipation of ALL THE RACES I had planned. (ha) I did a 10k race with a friend. I was under trained and under fueled and it was much hotter than I expected. But I ran with a wonderful woman who made it incredibly fun. The leg/foot cramps afterwards were NOT fun but I discovered pickle juice works miracles. We saw the Glitch Mob with friends and a middle school play that Good Friends’ daughter was in (that was surprisingly hilarious and entertaining!). My middle son turned 20 and my oldest 21 (what?). 

June 2018

Celebrated our Good Friends’ OTHER daughter graduate high school…and cried more than when my older boys graduated. I participated in my first Color Wars with our youth group (like dodgeball but with socks filled with that colored powder). Freaked a barista out after because the colored powdered mixed just right to look like I had major bruising down one side of my face/neck. Nice. Left the same day for the first camp with my youth group girls where we walked approximately 8 miles a day, with hills, did zip lines and bb gun shooting and rock climbing, had wonderful God times, and (mostly) enjoyed being together. Went on a hike I haven’t done in years with my friend Kim and her husband and son. My mother had major oral surgery and a few days later my father had a heart attack. Thankfully he had nitroglycerin and was able to mitigate the damage so we get to have him around awhile longer. 

July 2018

The Amani Children’s Choir from Uganda were in town and led our church worship at a service in the park. I danced enthusiastically with my oldest and tore a muscle in my hip. I was on crutches for 3 weeks, in physical therapy for longer than that and out of all races planned for the year. We worked a fire works stand on the 4th. My husband made the biggest sales of the year wearing a god-awful patriotic cat suit. We went to a party at our Good Friends house later. We attended the wedding of friends from work (same woman I ran the 10k with). I was part of the crew that helped him pull off a pretty sweet proposal but I didn’t document when that happened.

August 2018

My parents came to visit for my birthday. I invited a bunch of friends over to spend the evening on my patio just hanging out and it was wonderful. My youngest started high school. I cried. A lot. No really. A LOT. (But he is THRIVING at this school.) I got back in the pool for the first time since my injury. We went to the hot air balloon festival with friends. 

September 2018

The youth group did our annual “Slip & Slime”. But this year we used foam, not the green slime and chocolate syrup of years past. It was so much fun and the blue dye washed right off. I was so excited to be able to participate a little because I was still barely walking without crutches. I got to take pictures of my oldest and his wonderful girlfriend. We had a President and Board Summit at work – a major event that happens every other year. I had the opportunity to fly on a float plane and land on the river before the event started. I got to go to one of my 6th grade girls cross country meet (SO much fun). 

October 2018

Our former roommate (“foster adult”) got married. It was beautiful. They are LSU fans and I love them enough that I wore a purple dress and gold jewelry to the wedding. No seriously. That is LOVE. (wooo pig sooie) My wonderful husband bought me a ticket to go see the Mixtape Tour (New Kids on the Block, etc)  next year with friends. I may have jumped up and down. My friend Kim invited me to go to the Casting Crowns concert with her. It turned out to be one of the best concert I’ve ever attended. I went to Leader Retreat for our youth group leaders at the same camp where we went with the kids that summer. I attempted the “high v” with another leader. It was terrifying and exhilarating. But mostly terrifying. It snowed. We celebrated the birthday of the wife portion of the Good Friends. My husband left for his second Africa trip of the year…and his longest trip to date. I got to spend Halloween going to dinner and a movie with my youngest.

November 2018

The youngest and I continued our November 5th tradition of watching “V for Vendetta” even though we were the only ones home. My husband came home from Africa. We had a memorable Thanksgiving. The Hubs 102 year old grandmother decided it was time to move to assisted living.

December 2018

I signed up for my first half-Iron distance triathlon to be done in September 2019. We had our first snow of the season and it was on a Sunday so I got to stay inside all day. My great-aunt (my grandmother’s twin) passed away. The Hubs surprised me with tickets to go see Hugh Jackman on tour next year with friends. Grandma moved into assisted living.  Christmas was nice, quiet and somewhat relaxing. I RAN FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE JUNE. (Yes. I am yelling. It is warranted). (That is possibly worth it’s own post.) And we’re only a few days away from 2019.

Are you still here? Wow. I went through a bunch of pictures from 2018 with the intention of one big picture post. That’s not going to happen primarily because the pictures mostly feature other people. I had a lot more thoughts on this year and one word that kept coming to mind as I was reviewing Facebook posts and pictures and texts. But as I started typing, I found I don’t really want to get into it any further publicly. Not now anyway. The year was not bad but in some ways it was “second hand hard”. Very little in my immediate life was negative but there was a lot hard stuff surrounding us. There was a lot of good too though. That’s life though, yes?

December 16 Week in review

My family is facing a couple of pretty major changes in the next few weeks. It’s not BAD but change can be hard. This is harder on some than others and my husband is actually doing most of the heavy lifting…physically and emotionally.  Things will start to settle in the next 6 weeks but in the meantime, if Hubs says “I need you available all day on Saturday.” my response is not “Sure. Except I have <insert workout> scheduled. Otherwise I’m free.” Nope. The answer is just “Sure.” I don’t think missing one or two workouts a week will seriously damage my race performance next September. And my family is going to be around a lot longer than I will be racing. At least that’s what I want. I think balancing priorities are difficult for most, if not all, triathletes. I’ve heard it argued that balance is actually impossible but constantly shifting priorities up and down the scale is what happens. That’s probably closer to reality. 

I was at 66% of workouts this week. 

  • Monday: Strength training at home. It’s always fun when a workout you design for yourself nearly does you in.
  • Tuesday AM: spin class
  • Tuesday PM: drills & skills in the pool. I swam with a woman for the first time who SMOKED me. I felt like I was swimming through setting concrete. By the time I had two 100s left, I was talking out loud to myself at the wall, convincing myself I could do “one more”. When I leaning on the wall at the end, a guy on the pool deck asked if I was done. I was like “Oh I am SO DONE.” And then I couldn’t pull myself out of the pool for a few minutes.
  • Wednesday: I killed myself Tuesday night. Dead. I did not get up. I was supposed to do strength.
  • Thursday: scheduled spin class. That did not happen.
  • Friday: I made up the bike time I missed on Thursday. So the workout happened. Just not as originally planned.
  • Saturday: Scheduled swim but family priorities!

The schedule this week is similar except instead of making up a workout on Friday, I plan to try to run. My last run was June 28. I injured myself July 1. I intend to hop on a treadmill and do some very short, easy running intervals to see how my hip holds up. And how I feel the next day. It’s an exciting prospect.

December 9 week in review

I am so tired right now I can barely keep my eyes open, much less write. My husband was away last night to take care of a family member. I had dinner delivered and had a comfy lazy evening. When my food was delivered, I had the thought that the delivery guy looked a bit sketchy but it was a fleeting thought and I went on with my evening. When I got ready to go to bed though, my cat didn’t come with me. She always curls up against my legs but I had no idea where she was. My imagination kicked into overdrive. My brain told me the “sketchy” dude (who is probably extremely nice) had realized I was home alone and come back. He had broken into the house while I was in the shower, killed my cat and was waiting for me to either come looking for her or go to sleep. I almost never am afraid to be alone. It’s not my preference but not because of fear. But I totally freaked myself out last night. I turned the living room lights back on (from an app on my phone so I didn’t have to leave the “safety” of my bed). I considered texting my 21 year old son and asking if he could come spend the night. I got mad at myself for being ridiculous but still couldn’t sleep. The cat finally came in after midnight and as soon as she laid down next to me, I passed out. Silliness.

I tried to swim today but thanks to my middle of the night mental antics, I was too tired and cut it short. I’ll be going to bed early tonight.

Okay. Workouts. I was at 50% compliance again:

  • Monday – nothing scheduled
  • Tuesday – spin class – done. I realized not every workout has to be super hard and kinda took it easy.
  • Wednesday – I had a swim planned. It did not happen. I was also going to strength training. That did not happen either
  • Thursday – Spin class was scheduled.. I did not go to spin but I did half an hour on the bike after I “made up” the weight training from Wednesday.
  • Friday – Strength training was scheduled but since I did it on Thursday, I did nothing.
  • Saturday – swim drills – nope. Tried to swim today instead.

Nutrition numbers were worse this week. I was playing with more carbs but I didn’t have the activity level to support those so I had a few hyper readings.

That’s about all I have to report this week. I’m still taking the “off” part of “off season” a little too seriously I think! 

2019 Race Plan

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that this past weekend I signed up for my first 70.3 in September 2019. For those who don’t know, that’s commonly know as a “half iron distance”. And that sentence clarifies exactly…nothing. So. A full iron distance triathlon consists of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and 26.2 mile run or 140.6 miles of race. Ergo a “half iron distance” is a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run or 70.3 miles of race. (Ironman® is a specific company that puts on races. The race I am doing is *not* an “Ironman® branded” race. However, they established the format so those distances are commonly referred to as “iron distances”) There are other, shorter distances in triathlon, commonly referred to as “sprints” (shortest) or the “Olympic distance” (medium distance). Those distances tend to vary from race to race. To date, I have only done sprint distances. The 70.3 will be my “A” race, and the last one of the year.  

I’m not sure about my first race of the season yet. Ideally I would do the YMCA Sprint Spring that is in April to shake the cobwebs off. It’s an indoor swim on Friday and bike/run outside on Saturday morning. However The Hubby and I are going to a concert that Friday night so I don’t know if I want to toss a race in there too. I’ll take a look at my fitness and decide in a few months. It’s a sprint and just a shake out but I still don’t want to do it exhausted. I have deferred registration to the PacCrest triathlon at the end of June in Sun River, OR. I plan to do the sprint there. So if I don’t do the Y Spring Sprint, that will be my first race of the season.

The Y Not Tri is a fun, laid back local race in early August. I enjoy that one so if my personal life schedule allows, I’ll toss that in as a fun training run through. I’ll do their middle distance which is a short sprint (400 yd swim, 6 mile bike, 2 mile run). And then I’m looking for a good local Olympic distance somewhere in mid July – mid August. There’s one a couple of hours away the first weekend of August that’s a possibility. I just don’t want another one where I have to spend a night away but given my location, I will probably have to. Any suggestions for the Boise ID area are welcome. Or if someone wants to fly me (& my husband) to a really cool race and pay for my lodging…I mean…I would be open to discussion. 😛 

I will start my official 70.3 specific training about 6 months out so I still have a few more months of strength/base building before the year gets really focused. But I have to start looking at these things now to make sure I have places to stay and a spot in the events. 

December 2, 2018 -week in review

I realized as I sat down to write that since I am in my “off season”, I don’t have a lot of content as a “type 2 triathlete”. I’m still training but the sessions are relatively short and easy so fueling is a non-issue at this point. Also, my TrainingPeaks compliance last week was about 50% so fueling REALLY was not an issue. 😛 . I slept in. A lot.

I am “self-coached”. And I use that phrase loosely. Part of me would LOVE to have someone setting my workouts and checking in. But I am a middle of the pack age grouper with goals to “complete not compete”. Would I benefit from a coach? Absolutely! Is it high enough priority to impact my family’s finances? No. There are a couple of more experienced triathletes in my life who answer questions and help with training simply because they love the sport. I do not pay them and they prefer that they not be called “coaches”. They don’t write most of my workouts or my training plans. They don’t check my TrainingPeaks. But they are a fantastic resource.If you are in the Boise, ID area and are looking for a small group to train with, let me know.

I’m not even going to speak on my nutrition last week. My app that I use to track carbs and blood sugar readings sends me a weekly comparison report. It says my Blood Glucose trend was up 10 points, I have 2 more hyper readings and my carbs/day were up 19 grams. However. I also started testing 3-4 times a day instead of 1-2 and actually logging (almost) every bite. So without comparable data sets, I don’t know how accurate that is. Next week will give me a better idea of how I’m doing. 

Workouts planned last week were: 

  • Monday: Strength training – 33 minutes of full body done at home
  • Tuesday: Spin class (5:30am) – first class since this past spring and it was brutal but it got done. Bike computer died so no data.
  • Wednesday: Swim drills – slept in, did not get done.
  • Thursday: Spin class – Did not do. Horrible headache and woozy every time I stood up. Opted to sleep in.
  • Friday: Strength training – nope.
  • Saturday: Swim drills – I did not do the workout as written. I ended up doing two sets of short ladders with 50 yards of sculling and 50 yards of kicking at the end of each for 1,000 yards total. I SUCK at sculling so I’m always chanting “Sculling makes me stronger” to get through it. It does. I’m noticing an improvement. It’s still not my favorite.
  • Sunday/today: rest day – I don’t really NEED a rest day given how little I did this week. But we just got our first snow and it’s just a lazy, cozy day. 

R2D2 vs C3PO

My husband and youngest son have been watching “Clone Wars” on Netflix. It’s a Star Wars animated series. I don’t know the timing within the Star Wars universe (after Anakin is a Jedi, before he’s not) or if it’s considered canon (probably?). It’s not something I really watch although I’ll tune in occasionally. But they usually watch if I go to bed early or am busy elsewhere.

The other night I was in the kitchen while it was on. It was an episode that featured R2D2 and C3PO. And I realized…C3PO irritates me. Or at least he did that episode. But I had a certain admiration for R2D2. C3PO was whiny and immobilized by fear. R2D2 took action. C3PO criticized and was sort of buffeted along by events. R2D2 made solutions happen.

Of course that’s a quick impression based on the few minutes that I was listening. I have seen the movies though and would say overall that’s their “personalities”.

Maybe I wouldn’t like R2D2 if I understood his beeps and whirrs. But in that moment, I realized that although I might resemble R2D2 more physically (short and round), my natural tendency is to react more like C3PO in stressful situations. I can get whiny and want to just curl up under a blanket. But my desire is to consistently be like R2D2 in all respects. I despise the idea of being controlled by fear (or discomfort). I would rather take action through fear or stress. I would rather take the initiative. It takes being conscious of reactions (or lack thereof). It takes practice.

There’s the quote “Courage is not the absence of fear. It is the ability to act in the presence of fear.” (I did not a quick search to credit someone and found a range of similar statements credited to a plethora of people). I don’t think we can live our lives with the purpose God intended if we cannot act in the face of fear. I’m regularly wrestling with staying in a safe, comfortable zone and stepping out to push limits or take action. I just thought it odd that Star Wars could bring that thought process to the forefront again. To R2D2 – may we all be more like him. Except with more clear communication.