Summer 2011: Day 5

June 10th, 2011

Sexy hot super duper fast 808 race wheels on the Bacon bike for the Liberty 1/2 iron race tomorrow.  Thanks Urban Tri.

Deliciously Untethered

April 16th, 2011

Adam and I flew into Boston last night and had a wonderful dinner with Anne Marie to kick off our Boston weekend.

Today has consisted of watching TV, eating breakfast at 12:30pm, walking through the Public Garden, picking up my race packet and then taking a nap.

I have not done so little with a day and been so happy about doing so little with a day, in years.

As I lay in bed typing I wonder, how long does it take for bed sores to set in?


Boston Bound!

April 15th, 2011

If you want to check in on how the race is progressing:


Live local coverage on WBZ-TV, or

Live national coverage on Universal Sports Television Network

Live online streaming on

Live web coverage on

My lucky bib # is 16101.

It will be written

April 15th, 2011

In good trashy fashion, I prefer to write my race strategy on my arm before races.  Why not?  It gives me something to do and once I start running, I REALLY can’t do math, so if I have it written down where I can’t lose it, that is perfect.

The photo link above was the pacing it took to get to Boston.

Here is what Welle has teed up for Boston (goal time 3:30)

Miles 1-5: Pace 8:05

Miles 6-10: Pace 7:55

Miles 11-16: 7:45

Miles 17-21: 8:05 (we get to catch a break with Heartbreak Hill at mile 19)

Miles 22-26.2: 7:45

Let it be so!




One week to go

April 11th, 2011

I have always loved “last of the last” sort of things.  Those are the what are you going to do the last day before school gets out or what are you going to do the last week of summer vacation, types of things.  It’s a strange way of eking every last second out of what is left.

This is my last week of training before Boston, which falls right in line with my “last of the last” thinking.  It is pretty unconventional with all the biking, but really, we are already behind on all that business (no need to worry about that until next Tuesday morning) so why not tie it into a taper?


  • 10-20 mile bike, mostly flat. Yes, you can do the greenway if you want to stay in your comfort zone.
  • 30 minute clearance run afterwards


  • Track work. Likely about 10-15 x 120 on the turf with full recoveries and some dynamic stretching.
  • Easy clearance swim.


  • 10-20 mile bike, mostly flat.
  • Good day for yoga or a massage.


  • 5 mile EASY Foundation run with 8 strides at the end. Also any form running drills you want. Stretch WELL.
  • Easy clearance swim.


  • 30 minute clearance run. Optional strides at the end. No more than 4 strides.


  • OFF. Drink a ton of water and keep your feet up, as much as possible.


  • 20 minute clearance run, a few form running drills. Do strides until you feel loose and fast.


  • 26.2 miles. I’d like you to choose a fairly hill course, preferably somewhere in the northeast. I’ve heard Boston is nice this time of year.


A marathon, a sherpa, a gun, a hit-n-run, TACO the dead dog and off to Boston we go!

October 10th, 2010

What a day, what a race, what a way to end the season!

3:40:31 and 1st in my age group!

The late TACO, my race inspiration.

The finish line.

Here are the rest of the photos.

Thanks to Adam for all the support you ALWAYS give me, to Erika for being there all the way to the finish line, to Welle for helping me turn the wheels over yet again, to all my friends, team mates and family who have cheered me on ALL season long.

Couldn’t do it without all the love!

Alright…let’s do this

October 8th, 2010

I am off to Ashland, WI to face the demons.  Or maybe we should spin that a little differently…crush them!

Armed with my new compressions socks (which make me feel like a very naughty Catholic school girl when worn with a running skirt), Welle’s pacing (which will be written all over my arms) and my ladybird Erika (seriously, who doesn’t want her around?) for ground support, this should be one heck of a ride.

Totally ready for the challenge…bring it on!

If I can actually follow the pacing, here is how it should go:

Miles 1-8: 8:45min/miles

Miles 8-13: 8:15min/miles

Miles 13-20: 8:00min/miles

Miles 20-23: 8:15min/miles

Miles 23-26.2: How much heart do you have????


10k: 54:30, 8 mile: 1:10:00, 13.1 mile: 1:52:30, 20 mile: 2:48:30, 23 mile: 3:13:45

I’ll keep you posted and have photos on my return.

Good luck to Vicki, Scott (and Scott’s brother) who are running Chicago this weekend and to jMatt who is racing KONA!

One last gasp

October 4th, 2010

The week before the ironman, I came home from a run with such exhilaration for completing the workout so perfectly, that Adam looked at me and said, “Why don’t you run another marathon and qualify for Boston?”

That’s all I needed to stoke that flame.  A quick email to Scott wondering if this was a bad idea or worse yet a HORRIBLE idea went off.  He suggested waiting until after the ironman was done and then decide.

So while Adam and I were driving home from the ironman, I flipped open the computer, Adam handed me a credit card and said, “Sign Up!”

Here is the email thread that transpired next:

Me: I want to go to Boston.  Whislestop…Oct 9.  Get me there.

Scott: Done.

So this Saturday, I will be attempting, yet again, to qualify for Boston.  Since I am now 40 the cushion is a bit thicker, I need to finish in 3:50.

I will see if the gamble of riding this wave of fitness will pay off or if it will all come crashing down.

Bets start at $1.


September 22nd, 2010

Who knew this would take me this long to get this out.  I got a little side tracked organizing SurlyFest on my return.  Which, by the way, was an absolute blast and went off without a hitch, thank you very much.

But…I am sure what you really want to hear about is if I actually made it out of Madison in one piece, right?  So buckle up or get a cup of coffee or maybe a bottle of wine, this might take a while.

I wish I could have had a recorder, taping my thoughts throughout the entire race, so I could download all the “crazy” that went on in my head for 11 hours and 35 minutes because really, if you didn’t know it already, there is lots-o-crazy in there.  And being so very social, like I can’t seem to keep my mouth shut, my coach as well as my friends were a little worried that I might self implode with all that silence.

As far as the race, I did a pretty good job following the plan my coach and I talked about.  With the exception of the run, it gets so dark in there in my head when I run.  That said, I also may have biked a little too fast to get the speed that I really wanted on the run.  Oh well, rookie mistake, even though we talked about it at great length and I knew better.  What can I say, I had Jon’s race helmet and some speedy race wheels, it’s like wearing a sexy dress or f*&% me boots, you just feel so good, so invincible.  I couldn’t help myself.

I knew this was going to be an emotional day and I was bound and determined to just have the best day possible, no matter what was thrown my way. So instead of giving you a play by play, I’ll give you some of the emotional highlights.

The swim, with about 2.500 people treading water while the national anthem was being sung, was amazing. I do usually cry at national anthems, but not today.  My coach and I went out by the buoys and tried to file in according to our race pace, it was nice having someone there I knew, at least for that fleeting moment.

Then the cannon went off, it was like being in a cage match with a bunch of seals.  I was expecting rough waters but it was even more physical than I ever imagined.  I had arms on my back, shoulders, legs and people simply trying to pull past me.  It had to do in large part with where I started, which I knew, but why not go into the eye of the storm?  I swam next to my coach for the first leg and then just found a nice pace and kept moving forward.

At the second turn, my dad showed up.  I had the same feeling a while back and the flood of emotion made me start to weep into my goggles.  I knew he would show up at some point, he would have so been there to see this.  When I started training back in January, he was still here and while training continued on, he died.  So I knew that the culmination of this race would bring with it thoughts of my dad, of loss and simply, a lot of emotion.  And as quickly as it came, it was gone.  As was the swim.  2.4 seemed to fly by and off I went out onto my bike.

I swear, every time I was out on a training ride my friend Ellen would call.  It became our joke and I always answered the phone with a, “SERIOUSLY, I am biking!” and then I would burst out laughing.  So on the course, somewhere in the distance, I kept hearing a very Pavlovian bell, which immediately made me think of Ellen, which made me think of the fact that she was at home thinking of me, which made me start to weep, yet again.  Which then lead me to think about how lucky I am to have such an amazing group of friends and family that supported me through this entire endeavor , it was almost too much to take. The tears would come and as quickly as they came, they were gone.

When thinking about how emotional this race was going to be, I always saw myself breaking down at the finish line, not breaking down during the race.  I found myself amazed by the surge of emotion and when it would come, I simply tried to let it wash over me and move on.

I was biking pretty hard but feeling really good, so I was just going to keep going.  At mile 40 I bumped into Jeff Steel and talked so much I ran my bike off the road, that could have been disastrous.  He suggested I move on as to not hurt myself.  At mile 60, as I was descending a hill at 40 miles per hour, I knew I had fallen pretty head over heels in love with this race and I knew right then and there that this was not going to be my last ironman. At mile 80 I could no longer get down my cliff bars and started dry heaving over my handle bars. At mile 82 I realized I was tired for the first time.  At mile 104 I hit a bump so hard that my handle bars fell down at least three inches, good thing there was only 8 miles left.  For those of you dying to know if I peed on my bike…YES, three times.

So with a few miles left, doing better than I ever imagined on that hilly of a course, I finished up, handed my bike to the volunteers and headed into the transition area, where I change one last time and gather everything I need for a 26.2 mile run.

The plan, 9:45-10:00 min mile pace for the first 6 miles then drop to 9:00 for the rest of the race.  Well, I kept looking at my watch and it said 7:45 min miles, so not ok.  So I spent the next three miles trying to figure out how to lumber along to get to the slow speed I was suppose to be going.  It’s hard with people yelling and cheering and all the excitement and you’re just so damn glad to be off your bike seat and onto the next event.

I honestly couldn’t believe how fast everything was going.  I kept looking at my watch throughout the day and the hours kept ticking by, now here I was, running.  Already, running.

The high points of the run: I finally got to talk with people and I saw almost everyone I knew once or twice, including all the people that came to cheer (thank you for being there!), yeah that was the best part.

The low points:  I felt like I was going to shit my shorts for about 26 miles, one of my toes felt like it got a shiv stuck in it and then hot liquid shot out around mile 19, which caused a bit of a problem with my form.

Then the little nice voice in my head showed up.  I had 6 miles of the run left.  I knew if  I only ran 10 minute miles I could still be under 12 hours.  Remember the goal pace?  It was not 10 minute miles.  So that sweet little voice, that normally is not sweet at all but nasty, is telling me I am doing such a great job that I don’t have to go any faster.  That I have worked hard enough and I will still do better than I thought.  Who was this devil in sheep’s clothing?  He was totally right, but still, I knew it in my core there was more to give but wanted to listen to that little voice so much more than push harder.

The end of the run is up State Street, which is a slight incline and if you look up you see the Capital in all its glory.  You hear thousands of people cheering, there is no way you can’t smile while you take it in.  There is one last water stop right at the base of the Capital, I wasn’t going to stop, I was so close to the finish line.  But in the blink of an eye, I realized my race was going to be over in a few minutes.

As that realization hit me, I stopped running.  I stood there, looked at the Capital, the sun shining down, the beautiful day, I turned and looked at all the people, thanked the volunteers and soaked every last ounce of my first ironman experience up.

Then I threw my cup on the ground and finished the race.

I ran through that shoot with more energy than I ever thought I would have for spending the entire day swimming, biking and running.

What a day, what an experience.

I have so many people to thank.  Without all of you and your support I could not have crossed that finish line.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.

Here are all the photos!

I love Penn Cycle

September 8th, 2010

I’m going to say it again…I LOVE PENN CYCLE!

I’m sorry Gear West, you don’t really care about me and I have moved on.  Ok, unless you have what I need and then I guess I need to go back to you but I try really hard not to need you.

Sounds like a bad relationship doesn’t it?  Or maybe the realationship I had with my bike that didn’t fit that I bought there.  ANYWAY…

This is Rich, he’s the manager over at Penn Cycle.  I bought my new-wonderful-amazing-fast-hot bike at Penn Cycle AND they fit me on the right size, imagine that!

Rich is holding up race wheels.  Those race wheels are now on my bike for the big race, for free.  Those wheels cost more than my bike, I better not mess them up.  The one draw back, if I flat, there really isn’t a way to fix it. I know, I can feel your worry.  Don’t, I’m trying not to.

How did I get these you ask?  Cute, fast (in a racing way), funny, chatty, hot Di was at Penn getting new bike shoes and told Rich I needed some for race day. Sure enough, he told Di to have me give him a call.  So I did.  And while I was one the phone with him, I told him that I was pretty sure that if I had just walked in and talked to him, he would have NEVER handed me a pair of very pricey racing wheels.

That kinda stuff just doesn’t happen to me.  I mean don’t get me wrong, I’m funny and I have a great personality, but I don’t get free shit from boys.  I am at least glad he found that conversation funny because it could have been very weird and awkward.

Of course, I also found out he liked Surly, so I felt that the least I could do to repay the favor was to pay him off with beer.  I’ve never seen a bigger smile on someones face than when I walked in with a bunch of Surly under my arm and handed it over, along with my bike.

Thanks Penn, may these wheels make my travels very fast.