Friday, February 21, 2014

I have been very slack on my blog as I have not been up to much lately! 

Winter arrived in full force and has kept us all training in doors for the most part! The mountain bike trails were full of snow, the roads icy and snowy and the temps frigid! 


 
 Thankfully for Mowgli , he got me outside. He did not seem to mind the cold one bit!


 He would find the biggest piles of snow to jump in and has provided me with many a cold walk, even more cold runs and a lot of laughs!!!


So as you can tell from all the pictures Mowgli was  the sunshine of my winter and the focus pretty much was on him!

 We did manage to get out on the slopes more than normal this year and ski on fresh powder!



A few weeks ago I decided to head down to Miami to do the Miami half marathon! A last minute decision partly as I had a race scheduled, partly as a few days of sun sounded so good! But just as you can imagine it turned out to be 80 degrees, 100% humidity and after a lot of outdoor slow runs or indoor treadmill workouts this race spun out of control pretty quickly for me! With just an afternoon to prepare for the heat I woke race morning sweating well before the race start. I knew I was in trouble! I made sure to take it out slow as I was upfront with the elites and it was easy to get caught up. But slow it stayed until at mile 10 where my legs were in full cramps! I jogged into the finish enjoying the amazing event and was thankful to be there! 



 Two weeks later I was packing up for the QT2 training camp in Clermont Florida! This is the second year training here and I really love this area! Its one time in the year where I can just put my head down and train with no other distractions.  Even though I was tempted to bring my biggest distraction below!!!
The view of the NTC training pool the first day of camp is always a breathe of fresh air! Sun out, long course set up!  A group of 30 or so athletes ready to work hard. I love and appreciate these days so and am very thankful to my family who knows it and lets me go for the 10 days every year!  Camp is a good reality check for me. A place to assess how the winter has gone. For me I am way behind this year but instead of getting down on myself I look at it as a great starting point. I love seeing all our athletes working hard and motivating each other!


Sometimes you have to put your head down and ride! Its been amazing to get some good miles in over the last three days. Roughly around 300 miles!!!


Here the group attentively await the instructions for the main set of our ride. This day it would be 2 x group crit races.

I am on day 8 of camp and have just a few more days here until I head back to the next brewing snow storm in Jersey!!!  I know Coach Jesse has a whole bag full of tricks and those days will hurt!!! 
Can't wait!!!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Life in the slow lane....


I am not sure what it is with planes and blogs. But here I am back on a plane! Traveling again for the first time since my trip to South Africa in August and I finally have nothing to do but put my thoughts onto paper! 

Not sure why I have not blogged in so long! I thought of it a few times but that's as far as it went! Perhaps uninspired by my not racing…perhaps feeling the disappointment of ending my season! But whatever the reason I was inspired to write a blog today as I ran into a friend who told me how much her 11 year old daughters enjoy reading my blog  and I felt like I was letting them down by my absence of recording my life happenings…exciting or not! 
So thank you Anna and Alexis for inspiring this latest blog!

I need to fill you all in with a quick summation of where I ended up my season back in August! I had headed to Mont Tremblant Canada for a last minute decision to race an Ironman a short 3 weeks after IMLP in honor of my dad who had just been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer! 

My race had no purpose but to finish and smile and celebrate the wonderful gift of being fit and being mentally strong! 
The race was tough and my body was tired, mentally and physically, but I was so glad I made the trip to that beautiful part of the world. I finished strong and celebrated the fabulous results of many friends racing that day!  


The morning after the race I made the 10 hour drive back to NJ and then woke the next morning to head to South Africa with my daughter!  Knowing the serious condition my dad is in and not knowing how his treatments would go Coach Jesse and I had decided it was best to end the season right there and take some much needed time to rest and be with  my family in a time of need without any pressure to maintain my fitness! 

Sydney and I heading to Germany



Sydney taking a moment to say a prayer for her pop pop!
Sydney and I on the Bridge of Locks standing over the Rhine river Germany

My travel buddy

Touring Frankfurt!



Onto SA and I was reminded of just how much the sport of triathlon has given me. The tools for enduring an Ironman go hand in hand without the tools you need for fighting just about anything that life throws your way! How you react to the things that might go wrong in an Ironman is how you may react when you have to deal with adversity!  



I had many a conversation with my Dad on how to stay positive through these dark times! 

 It is something that is so difficult to do when you are fighting a terrible disease like cancer but you have no choice but to take it one treatment at a time, one day at a time, one week at a time!  Just as in an Ironman keeping positive goes a long way in how your body responds.  In an Ironman you don't look ahead, you stay in the moment, you pray, you appreciate when you are feeling good and you stay clam and control what you can control! 

I am so thankful for being able to be thereI to support my mom and Dad through this difficult time and I continue to do so from a distance. He is fighting the battle like a champ and his tumor is responding well! I also loved the time I got to hang with my brother and his family!
Sydney hanging with her cousins

Sydney bought this beautiful handmade heart for me! Love her!


Sydney so comfortable in the wild!!!

My mom and her beautiful sister Aunty Barbs!
I will miss those beautiful South African sunrises!

Sydney and I overlooking Durban beachfront

 Our time passed quick and before we knew it Syd and I were headed back to the states. After a flight delay we got to spend a day in Switzerland which was both beautiful and exhausting!




On lake Zurich

Our trip around stunning Lake Zurich with the Alps in the background






On returning to the states I accepted the fact that my season was over but  I will admit it was hard watching all these late season Ironman races going on with no races on my schedule for months. By the time I race again I will have taken 8 months off of racing which is CRAZY long considering my hefty schedule over the last few years! 

This time has been nice though and I have really enjoyed the slower pace of not always rushing trying to fit everything in. I got to sleep in and eat whatever I want and stay up late and watch TV. But you know what I realized… I like to wake up and train early, I really don't enjoy watching TV, I like my busy schedule and I like my daily structure and my healthy eating of four fruits and veggies a day, smoothies and lean proteins!! 
 I just end up taking more stuff on like more time to practice soccer with Sydney and more time to coach the girls out running. Instead of my own blogging I created a Facebook site for their team with all their sponsors! I too got out on the mountain bike before anyone else this year enjoying the warm weather riding in the woods! We have made several trips to NYC to see shows. 


Mountain biking for fun with my good friend Mercedes

Ran a few 5kms with the kids!



But the biggest change to my life has been the addition of this cute puppy whom we call Mowgli to our family! 

This is Mowgli at 6 weeks! His first name was Brayden but he looked more like a Mowgli to us!


Everyone warned me puppies are like babies…but I did not believe until I was holding this fluffy little thing in my arms.  I also did not realize how much time is involved with taking care of a puppy! So much for sleeping in!  Early morning, lunch and evening walks,  puppy baths and feeding and of course plenty of time goes to hugging, puppy belly rubs, puppy games, training…it is never ending! 



Enjoying the fall evenings at my house!

Sydney playing soccer






So now that I am getting back to training and my hours are creeping up over the 20 hour mark I can officially say I am back to being overwhelmingly busy between my training, kids activities , puppy and life itself!!! Just the way I like it!

I will be updating my blog a little more when I can find some quiet time…right now there is none!

What I can tell you is I look forward to my 4th year being coached by Jesse Kropelnicki and racing for QT2 Systems.  I also have made up a tentative early season plan which involves a Feb training camp in Claremont Florida,  a few running races and a April/May Ironman combo!  

and you may want to know where I was headed…..Out to San Francisco to be an Officiant at my cousins wedding and of course I couldn't resist the urge to find a race while out there! Because what better way to see a new place than by running a half marathon through the streets of Berkeley! I was happy to finish second in my age group! 



Love these beautiful ladies!