Thursday, February 25, 2010

Tri Brain

Why are you swimming/biking/running so much?

Because I want to get better.

I'm not one to tally up my hours and distances spent training on all three sports. I love to train, and I like to see my *numbers* in my race results. That said, the program that my coach has me log all my sessions on keeps track of all these automatically.

I still don't pay much attention to the data -- I only view the info as an indicator as to how careful I'll need to be about getting enough sleep and eating properly.

Yesterday, I tried to put the big olive oil jug into the microwave (didn't fit), took out the milk instead of the orange juice, and woke up this morning to find the orange juice I managed to take out of the refrigerator stayed on the counter all night....LOL!!

Last week, was my biggest week yet -- 28:52 of training. :) :) :)

I am FINALLY making swimming headway too!!!! I finally have experienced a breakthrough of sorts -- I know what it feels like to start catching the water. :) :) I have a long way to go still, but I'm finally on the bottom rung of the ladder!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This week I saw my usual swim times for the same workouts drop. Significantly. I couldn't believe my watch and I couldn't believe how I could actually feel the difference in the water.

You always hear people talking about feeling the water -- it is true -- you can! Don't bother asking me what my times are -- homey don't roll like that. Training is training and I'll do my talking on race day. :)

My little hairs on the back of my neck are bleached and wiry, my skin is so dry from the chlorine that my skin hurts when I bend or move. Especially the spot in the middle of my back where I can't reach to apply moisturizer.

And I love every single minute of it. :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Animal Magnet

I always knew I would be a pet owner...But I never thought I would own multiple pets! When I was in my early 20s I got my first dog, Diva. After about a year, I thought it would be a good idea to get another dog as a companion for her. A pet dog for my pet dog if you will.

The next year, following this same logic, I noticed that Diva and Toby were now bored with each other and needed a new pet. This time I adopted a cat -- Mandalay. The novelty lasted a bit longer -- I've heard that the youngest animal in the home has the hardest time adjusting to a new addition, and in Toby's case it was the truth. (Diva was the exception -- she loved Toby the moment I brought her home.)

However, their boredom with each other soon became apparent -- I would have three animals following me around from room to room. Looking at me. Meowing at me. All of them following me, all the time. What do they want????

It took a few more years, but I finally got another cat, Peanut -- I never thought I would own 4 animals at once. Diva passed away a year ago, so I am now back down to three -- but some things never change. They all follow me still. Wherever I go there is at least one animal hot on my heels.

I go downstairs to clean the litter box and Peanut follows, christening the litter as I clean it -- nice. Then trying to jump on my back as I am bent over cleaning. I have to keep standing up whilst waving the pooper scooper at her saying, "NO!"

I go to the bathroom and all three will mess with me:

1. Toby forcefully pushes the door open with her nose and watches me do my business as I say, "Get outta here! Gimme some privacy!" She only goes away after I've pet her bum -- she turns in a circle and looks at me until I do it.

2. Mandalay sees me heading for the bathroom and times her run so that we enter the bathroom at the same time. Often times she is so close underfoot I have *scooped* her accidentally with one of my feet and flung her forwards a bit. (As your foot rises to take a step forward, said cat's belly is caught, lifting and flinging cat ahead. Very disconcerting when this happens.) She sits on the sink and meows at me until I turn the water on for her.

3. Peanut follows me in -- if the door is firmly shut, her paws will inevitably be poking under the door prompting me to play while I am sitting on the throne. There I sit, reaching with my fingertips and tickling her paws while I try to do my business. If the door is open a little bit, she follows me in and meows loudly until I bend over and let her jump on my back. (Both Keith and Susi can bear witness to me emerging from the washroom with The Nut on my back. In fact, Susi has experienced this phenomenon. LOL!)

I'll be making dinner and look down and see three sets of eyes watching me, studying me. Sometimes they meow at me, bark at me.

Even when I do my stretches after a session, they all congregate around the yoga mat. As the mat unrolls, Peanut likes to chase the roll until it is flattened out. Then she claws/attacks the yoga mat, and rubs up against me as I try and stretch. Very gross. Picture orange cat hair plus a sweaty body.

Onto training news...

Yesterday morning, I drove to Pincher only to discover that th
e pool was closed due to mechanical difficulties. (Gee, maybe it has something to do with the pool temperature.) Wish someone had called me...

So, I turned around and headed west, to the long lost Lima Bean Pool of Sparwood. I had two swims plus weights yesterday, so I planned on swimming first, doing weights, and then doing my second swim.

I thought I had packed enough food....In fact I woke up at 4:30 am to prepare more food than usual.

When I got to Sparwood, my best friend's hubby was swimming and I asked him if Charmaine would be coming to the pool later on. Yes she was!! I haven't seen her for a long time, so I was excited!!

I met her in the gym later on and she had packe
d a bunch of food for me "just in case." Thank God for Charmaine!!!

I started to feel a deep hunger about halfway through the weights, but hung on to the end at which point I wolfed down my own food.

We went swimming afterward -- Charmaine left and fortunately left the food bag for me. What happened when I got out of the pool was not a pretty sight. The deep hunger was back --- with a vengeance. I barely made it out of the shower when I had to dive in.

First to hit the belly, was a baggie of small, sweet tomatoes. Oh MY GOD!!! These tasted so good after the swim -- I couldn't believe it. YUM!!!! (I am definitely going to have this again as an after swimming treat!)

Next, were the two hard-boiled eggs. I couldn't peel them fast enough -- my hands were shaking and there were a couple of moments where I seriously contemplated eating around the tiny bits if shell that aggravatingly refused to peel off at first try... A couple of shell bits fell to the floor, missing the garbage can.

Now you would think by this time, the edge would have been taken off the hunger. But no way. The worst was yet to come. I attacked a pear with such vigor that one lady drying her hair close to me, gave me an awkward glance. Did I forget to mention that I was wolfing down this food in my sports bra and underwear in the change room? Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!
It took all my willpower to put on the bare minimum before I started eating food -- hey, even I have standards! Hee-hee!!!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

My Boy's Calves....

Mike is THE perfect example of a mesomorph. The dude is seriously muscular and naturally athletic. Years ago, he ran a 45 minute 10km (which he didn't really train for, see he was into weightlifting back then), and then HAD A CIGARETTE AT THE FINISH. I kid you not.

I got cocky a few years ago and challenged him to a sprint down the block....

Jake (his son) was visiting us that weekend, and he stood at the end of the block with his hands in the air, race-car style. When he dropped his arms, we took off, and Mikey took off like a freaking torpedo. I was laughing so hard, he slowed down and started asking me, "Oh! Do you need me to take it a little easier for you?" Hahahahahahaha!!!!

Yeah, I have the endurance, but Mike is a natural -- you should have seen him swimming/snorkeling in Hawaii. If he ever quits smoking and decides to take up sport ---- EGAD!!!!!!!

These are his calves with him not working out at all......Unbelievable.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lookie what I found in the ditch!


I was headed back from my long run this morning....about 8km left to go when I spied this little treasure on the side of the ditch. The bottom plastic bit is broken, so someone lost their car flag.

Don't worry little car flag -- I was meant to find you!! Hee-hee!!

The weather was turning crappy, and my legs and feet were sore, when I saw this flag...

I didn't even hesitate -- I scooted over, picked it up and ran the rest of the way home along the highway with it. Hahahahahaha!!

It was so awesome -- I had a few cars honk at me and a bunch of people wave. LOL!!!! When someone would wave/honk, I'd raise my flag and wave it around. I didn't mind the wind at all today --- the wind made my little flag blow!!! :) :) :) :) :)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Olympic FEVER!!!!!

I am in my element -- I've been glued to the telly watching the Olympics and all the excitement and drama....

Last night, watching how Canadian Kristi Richards had a terrible fall, then pulled herself together and stared down at the finish line for a few seconds before getting back on her skis and torpedoing down and doing a perfect back flip!!!! WOW!!!!

THIS is sport!!!! Seeing the look of complete focus -- real focus and concentration on these athletes faces inspires me beyond belief. Hearing about the obstacles some have overcome -- some physical (injuries, etc.), some mental (self doubt) and then to see each athlete give it their all -- WOW!!!!!!!!!!!

Watching the women's ski mogul last might was breathtaking -- even watching the women's hockey game was awesome. I am sooooo excited to watch the women's hockey team when they REALLY start to play. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Even the speed skating was taking my breath away -- I love how I am learning so much about these different sports -- and to see these athletes at the top of their form -- REALLY peaking -- unbelievable!

I LOVE THE OLYMPICS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh yeah, and I really, truly don't care if Canada wins a gold medal on home soil or not. Medals are bonuses -- just qualifying for the Olympics is a huge achievement. Harping on about how Canada has never won a medal while hosting the winter Olympics reminds me of all the "first" attempts on Mt. Everest. (Or Chomolungma if you want to split hairs.) It starts bordering on the ridiculous:
  • The "first" Canadian, Korean, South African, whatever to summit Mt. Everest
  • The "first" amputee to summit
  • The "first" double amputee to summit
  • It goes on and on....
I mean, talk about looking at the glass half-empty --- Look at all the strides Canadian winter sport has made -- all the successes, and instead the focus is on some random negative fact. They really had to do the research to get a negative fact to trumpet all throughout the Olympics...

Here are all these amazing athletes, and the headlines read, "Canada is the only country to not win a gold medal while the majority of Canadians were sitting down to dinner, answering the telephone, or while checking their email." GEEESH!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Don't bother trying to reach me -- I'll be busy watching the Olympics!! :) :) :) :) :) :) (And crying at all the corny cheesy Tim Hortons and Canadian Tire commercials. LOVE IT!!!!! LOL!!!!)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

I CAN DO CHIN UPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


It is true!!!! It happened last night at the gym...

I was doing my weight routine, when a thought suddenly popped in my head. Why don't I just try a chin up for the fun of it? I haven't tried in months and even then I could barely lift myself.

The chin up bar faces a big mirror --- I stretched up with my arms and stood on my tip toes to reach the bar and started to pull...

As I pulled myself higher and higher I was staring in surprise at my reflection. The higher I went, the higher my eyebrows rose....the higher I went the more my mouth opened into and "O." By the time I had LIFTED MYSELF UP INTO A CHIN UP I had the most surprised, shocked expression on my face. I lowered myself down and started laughing like a maniac and clapping my hands!!!

Nobody was at the gym -- but I kept looking left and right with this HUGE smile on my face, wanting to hug somebody. LOL!!!!!

I was so excited, I did it again!!! YAHOOO!!!!

Then, I took a little break and decided I was going to try to do 2 chinups in a row. Real ones. Lowering all the way back down without touching the floor and lifting my chin up past the bar again. AND I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Holy crap, I couldn't believe it!!! My arms were shaking for the second one, but I didn't care. :) :)

After that, I took one more break and then did 2 more in a row!!!!

The chin up party is officially at my house folks!!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! All that swimming Sara has me doing has (gasp) made me stronger!! LOL!!!!!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

39 Degrees Celsius Today....

On the pool deck.

Something is screwed up at the Pincher pool (again). For the past two days, the temperature at the pool has been ridiculous. I don't know whether something is broken or what is going on, but leaving the change room to enter the pool deck was like stepping off into the Equator at noon. And humid.

I don't know what the temperature of the water was -- but it was HOT as well.

Yesterday, I wanted to just walk back out of the pool and drive to Sparwood instead. I could taste the chlorine in the air. I knew I was going to have a hell of a time breathing. And the past two days have been so difficult. I'm still trying to sort out this asthma thing, and for the last two days, the heat and chlorine fog has had me wheezing no matter what. I can't wait until the Pass pool opens this spring. Sigh.

Onto today's swim workout...

The lifeguards told me the temperature reading outside the guard room and I just blinked in dumb awe. 39 degrees Celsius. Come on people. For the temperature to be that out of whack, and not be fixed yet? Sigh again.

My lifeguard buddies propped the emergency exit doors open to the -10 degree Celsius winter air -- and OH MY GOD was it ever blissful. When I finished a lap, I would stand up and let the cold air surround me. It felt sooooooooooo good!

You know how when you take a bath and you are all pink and hot from being in the hot water? I swear, I was pink from head to toe and the cold air was the only thing that saved me today -- it enabled me to actually complete my session.

Double swim tomorrow -- I'm thinking I should invest in an ice vest to wear in the pool. What do you think? ;)

Oh yeah, but the way, the pool water temp was 30 degrees Celsius.