UPCOMING EVENTS for 2015: (Under consideration) BigHorn 50K, North Carolina/DC Marathon Doulbe, TURNING 50 (not in that exact order).

It's never too late to be what you might have been. --George Eliot

Athena is the Goddess of wisdom and war. In 2005, I declared war on my own bad tendencies: sloth, being fat, compacency, and being too old for adventure.
This is the story of how I went from being someone who never stood when she could sit, to being an ultrarunner, marathoner, triathlete, and *sigh* student.
"You're never too old to be what you might have been" --George Eliot

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Product Review: The Moving Comfort Lila C/D Bra.

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in, forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day, you shall begin it well and serenely. --Ralph Waldo Emerson

The two products I'm going to review today are idea for big-chested athletes: an athletic bra and a full-length wetsuit.

Moving Comfort Bra: Lila C/D, in color "Ocean"
I got an email nearly a month ago from this guy at Moving Comfort asking me if I'd like to review one of their products. I mentioned this earlier.


I wore this bra at the "Run the Caldera" mountain marathon in May, and at Ironman Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3 in June. I was allowed to pick whichever one I wanted, and I picked this one because I'd been seriously jonesing for a bra that was a racerback pullover, with no underwire. If you're a little shier than I, they also make a Lila C/D support tank.

So, now this bra has swam, biked, and ran, hiked up and down a mountain or two. It's been cold. It's been hot. It's been rained on. It's been sweated on. Probably some spit and tears and snot found its way on there, too.

And it has PASSED the most important test of all: I didn't notice it. No chafing, it wasn't too tight, it held the girls without making them all squeezy. I had room in my cleavage for a generous handful of ice. It wasn't too hot.

When I wear a bra that is not supportive enough, or too restricting, the result is often the same: I wake up the next day with a sore chest. I didn't have that at the mountain marathon or the 70.3 triathlon. And, it was pretty.

See? Pretty! Right to the finish line. Moving Comfort Lila C/D Bra Link.


=========================
XTerra Vendetta Wetsuit

This was not free. It was on sale for about half off, though, and I have DP to thank for notifying me of that. I think she subscribes to about a million email alerts for sales and such.

I ordered a women's XTERRA XL Vector Pro2 Fullsuit, and here's some good news: THEY RENT. So, you can try it before you buy it. We paid extra to overnight it. They were out after the order was placed, upgraded me for free to the Vendetta, and slipped a little note in the box to let me know what they did. The wetsuit arrived Friday, the day before we were to leave for Buffalo Springs 70.3.

I've had a horrible time with wetsuits. They are, on the whole, not something you want so spent a LOT of time in. There are some parts of me that compress more easily than others and, well, let's just say that I think they like to assume that athletic women have no chest at all. So there's that. And then there's the neck - I always had to cut little notches in it so I don't choke to death. It's nice to be able to breathe, and that I can't do. I've always trimmed the ankles and wrists out, so that they come off easier, too

Not with this one. It reviews as one of the most boyant wetsuits out there, but it was super flexible, too, and it fit my 5'6" 175-pound frame right out of the box. When I held it up, I was looking at a wetsuit that actually had thighs and a chest, like me. It went on, and came off easily, and it's super flexible. I could do squats and windmills in this thing.

I only wished I had it at Ironman Couer D'Alene last year; I think I would have had a much better swim than the one I had in my teenage son's too-big wetsuit. I was able to extend my stroke fully, and in truth in the 74 degree water it kept me a bit TOO warm. I'm going to keep an eye on these guys and pick up a sleeveless as soon as one comes on sale.

===================================

(PS: I have 2 old wetsuits for sale, if anyone is interested: #1) Blue seventy women's fullsuit with ankles and wrists trimmed and the neck notched. Otherwise in great shape, no holes. #2) Men's large QR wetsuit, in good shape, used 3-4 times. No holes. Make me an offer; we'll work out something through PayPal. )

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Ironman Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3

Done.

Holy crap that was hard. This was one of the hardest races I've ever done. This seems to be my theme for this spring: Super Hard Races I Am In No Way Qualified For And Should Never Attempt At This Weight.

I don't know why I keep doing these super hard races so ill prepared. Maybe I'm hoping that somebody, somewhere, is saying, Hey, that Misty chick has got some stones. In any case, it's a very challenging course, but so well run--I can never get over how well run it is. Every aid station is stocked, to the very end, every volunteer is friendly and supportive and runs to get you stuff.

(There is at least one race that I like to joke is a do-it-yourself race --You know what you triathletes are? you're SPOILED. You with your ice and your well-marked courses. Snort!). Every year I hear the same thing from people who have done it, that nothing ever changes. )

But this race just outside of Lubbuck, however, is definitely not one of them. Mike and Marti care about athletes. They do triathlon themselves, and I think that makes a difference.

I finished in 8:43, not my best work, but considering the preparation I put into it, not my worst, either.

THE SWIM
The only complaint I have about this race: they send out Athenas and Clydesdals last. I'm pretty tired of being in the "leftover" group, and you should not send out your heaviest racers on a hot day last. I have it on good authority that even the pros found this to be a bad idea. I wore my new Vendetta wetsuit on the swim. This suit was a dream. Super flexible; I was doing squats and windmills in this one. Perfect. Fit. I did get a little warm on the swim, as the water was 74 degrees. I recommend a sleeveless for this race. I'd only been in the pool about 4 times this spring so my swim was apallingly slow, 59 minutes.



As a reward, each time I passed a buoy, I would pull out the neck a little and let colder water flood into the suit. The lake was calm and smooth and all I had to do was peek up to site on the buoys. The suit fit me perfectly, and wasn't too tight around the neck, as other suits have been. I heart this suit. I'll be wearing it at Redman for sure. It came off easily too.

I came into T1 and sat down. I had decided to try something new: I had prepared everything I needed for the run and the bike and put them into ziplock bags, which I thrust into my back pocket, so that I could just take off and go. I load everything into my bike shoes and helmet so it's not forgotten. I pulled out my Garmin, turned it on, and set it next to me. I pulled out my bike socks, the ziplock baggy, sunglasses, gel gloves, and helmet, and then stood up. I was ready.

THE BIKE
Okay. So. In a nutshell, 56 miles, roads can be a bit rought (velcro that aerobottle on TIGHT), 8 hills, 99% humidity mixed with mist and rain throughout most of the course.

I had two problems.





1) after FINALLY geting bike shorts over a wet skinsuit, I stood up and they were on BACKWARD. I let it go. What the hell. Maybe that's where the padding needed to be.

However, the back (front) of the shorts elastic rode down under the zip lock baggy that I'd put into my back pocket. It had an inhaler, some e-caps, and a PayDay bar, and squeezed it up and out of the back pocket. Last I saw it was sailing toward the side of the road as I headed down the first hill. I never saw it again.

2) My feet hurt like hell. Yes, on the bike. More on this later.
I've done parts of this course in other races, so I flew down the 2nd hill into Yellow Horse Canyon about 34 mph. The course was mostly flat, with steep climbs into and out of canyons. You really don't get enough momentum built up to carry you back out; they're large canyons. I'm very proud that never walked up any hill; only toward the end, at hill #8, did I stop for a moment and put a foot down on the ground, and catch my breath. I even climbed hill #5 that they call "the staircase," and passed people walking their bikes.

My total bike time: 4:15 or so. Certainly much more than I wanted to, but considering my lack of training, I'll take it. My bike worked perfectly. I love my new bike mechanic. I've had some shifting problems in the past, but not here, not at this race.

Heading back into town I depleted what was left of my legs, and my left foot HURT like crazy. My foot foot was numb in the middle. This has been a reocurring problem that I haven't mentioned much before.
So I came into T2, racked my bike, and then
AND THEN stared down at my soaking wet, mud-splattered gear. Crap. it had not occured to me to cover it in case of rain. Socks, shoes, towels, everything: soaked. So now I get to run 13.1 miles in wet socks and shoes. Joy.

THE RUN
In the past, any aches and pains that presented themselves usually went away when I started running, but my legs were just spent. Plus, it was humidity in the 90s, it was about 12:30 pm, and it was HOT. It was an out-and-back run with hills and turns; a challenging run course. On the way out I passed: Sweet Baboo, SW Tri Gal, her husband, and other people I knew - everyone deviated and ran toward me and wanted to slap hands and "high five," but I was almost too exhausted at this point to do that. Mostly, I just dramatically stumbled up to people and said, "I'm not doing so well."

The run has 2 large hills going out to the turnaround, and 1 large hill coming back. I was whooped. I stopped several times on the 2nd hill because my legs just didn't take it. On the way up the 2nd hill out, I saw Crazy Jane, who looked pretty fresh and perky, and also by Cindy, who gave me a salt tablet. Up at the top of the hill, there is this 4-mile out-and-back called the Energy Lab. The sun came out as I was climbing up toward it and stayed out and it was hot, and humid, and I soaked. I'm pretty sure at this point that I didn't resemble the sex, sweaty woman of many a dream, but more so the sexy, sweaty horse that just ran the track a few times. SNORT.
Somewhere around the turnaround, though, I took 2 EnerG Ease caplets, a couple of tylenol, and a vitamin B and washed it down with coke-cola. By then, the pain in my foot had subsided somewhat. Most of the people AFTER my at the turnaround were pulled. I would LOVE to do a race at some point where it's not that close! I passed about 4 people on the way back in, including what I later found out was the #2 master's athena.

2 miles out from the finish, an ambulance went screaming by the lake, and I thought, oh, boy. Baboo will freak out. Sure enough, half mile later here he came, walking and smiling, and saying, "there's my baby." He walked with me for a while, and stayed a little ways behind me so that he couldn't be accused of pacing. I alternately walked, and ran, and then finally I finished. I almost cried I was so happy to be done. I don't do a lot of half marathons, but the last time I did my PR was 2:59. I was hoping for that on this one, for some strange reason, but I wound up with 3:16 as my time. I think I negative-splitted it because I felt so much better on the way back and was able to run most of it.

Then I walked about 30 feet to the boat ramp, and into the water where I floated on my back for a while, despite my fat butt's attempts to flip me over to my stomach.

When I got out of the lake, OW. There was my foot again. This time, I could barely walk on it, and I noticed a swelling above the painful area. At first, I thought it was broken, but I went to see a sports medicine podiatrist and he x-rayed it and said no, I just need orthotics in my cycling shoes. He gave me a cortisone shot, taped it, and gave me an ugly boot to wear. Maybe Wednesday I can swim, and maybe this weekend I can ride a bike, but no running this week. Crap. At least now I've finally solved the mystery of why biking hurts my feet so much. I am already finding that I have to work half as hard because of the limping and the boot. Hmm. How to make the best of this...

I found out that I got 1st Master's Athena, and 3rd Athena overall

Tomorrow I'll do my product review for the bra Moving Comfort sent me.

So. To wrap up. What worked, what didn't work:

Worked:
  • My nutrition. For breakfast, I had a small, flat-bread wrap with veggie protein, some lettuce and tomatoes for breakfast, and some fig Newtons. On the bike, I had a power bar that THEY NEED TO MAKE EASIER TO OPEN - HEY, POWER BAR COMPANY, ARE YOU LISTENING?
  • Hydration. I drank gallons of gatorade. When it's that hot and humid, I don't stop drinking.
  • Sweet Baboo. He did this 3 hours faster than I did it. Yup, I married a big ole' STUD.

  • The bike. It's in great shape - glad I took it to Matt Caruso.

  • Taking my wedding rings off. Usually I perseverate the entire swim on the prospect of losing these.

Didn't work:

  • Well, for one, I could have TRAINED for this race. Duh. The overall Athena winner had a slower swim and slower run, but creamed me on the bike. Could there be a connection between how little time I spend on the bike and how slow I finish these races? Hmm. Maybe..
  • Wetsuit should have been sleeveless. To warm.

  • Putting my bike shorts on backwards. Going to not do that next time.

  • Trying to put on soaking wet injinji socks. next time, I'll put things in plastic bags. Of course this morning I checked my email to find this message from SW Tri Gal that she sent me the night before the race. Apparently, her husband:
    ...had a brilliant suggestion to bring plastic bags to put our running shoes in in case it rains while we are biking..Just a thought! See you all in the AM :)

    ...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bleh.

BIB NUMBERS: 1032 (me) and 1043 (Sweet Baboo). You can track us HERE


From the website: Bike course: 8 challenging hills, ranging from 2.9% - 8.9% grade and a quarter of a mile to 1.2 miles in length.

Run: 3 challenging hills, ranging from 10-14% (not the same hills as found on the bike course) grade. The hills are approximately 300 yards to 880 yards in length.

I just can't seem to do a flat race to save my life. :-( It's going to be HOT, too. Wait--can I just have one more month to train? The course cutoff time is 8 hours, which is my PR for a flat half iron. Eep. Other bloggers doing this race: Greyhound - Crazy Jane - SW Tri Gal - Sweet Baboo.

I'm still heavy, not an ounce down since January. I'm getting pretty depressed about my weight; I'm 20 pounds heavier than I was this time last year, and 175 is a lot to haul around a long course with hills. I'm eating about 1500 calories a day and training. This used to work for me. No more. I don't know where to go from here. If eating less, and moving more, doesn't work - then what does?

=============================

I lost my keys again. DAMMIT!! The last time I lost them, about a year ago, they were found outside, behind the air conditioning unit, 3 months later. I have no idea how they got there. My keys are definitely in my home, somewhere, and I've had enough of this $hit.

Last time, I bought one of Sharper Image's "now-you-can-find-it" things which isn't made any more, and good thing, too, because it was utter crap. You had to be within 2-3 feet and pointing it straight a the lost object, and there could be nothing covering the lost object, not a sheet of paper, item of clothing, nothing. I think it's safe to say that everything I have ever bought from SI has been utter crap.

I've ordered one of these: Find-One-Find-All and this time, I'm keeping the receipt.

====================
Yes, I have pre-race cranky craziness. You got a problem with that?


...

Thursday Thirteen


1. I had a spinach feta wrap on Tuesday from STARBUCKS. If this keeps up, I'll have to start forwarding my mail there. Food, they have there now.

2. I can share a bit about my job at the VA, but just a little: one of my duties is to recruit patients for research studies. One of the studies specifically requires subjects have an existing psychotic disorder. So here's the scenerio, and I'll let you guess how it often ends: Good morning, Mr. ___. I'm from the government, and we want to study you.

3. I bought a Finis Tempo Trainer. I became interested in them Momo used one last year at IMCDA. I've been testing it out all this week. I like it. I tend to dilly-dally in the pool, mosy-ing a long, getting slower and slower - this keeps me focused on moving forward.

4. Since I've had to rethink my eating due to the thyroid thing, I am now trying to eat a tiny bit every hour most of the day, lots of fruits and veggies included. I stay around 1500 calories on training days. When I have longer events or workouts, I drink or eat extra calories.

5. The forecast for this Sunday at BSLT is 92. yay. I loves me some heat. Time to get out my "cool off bandana" I used this on the 96-degree run at Barb's Race last summer, and it rocks.

6. Sweet Baboo has nearly finished all his interviews for the job he wants. YES, this has been going on since December. So far, he's gotten good feedback.

7. I eat a hard-boiled egg every morning, peeling it into my trash can. I'm eating 2 cups of mixed vegetables every day with my lunch, which I heat in the microwave. This week, my mixed veggies are cauliflour, brocolli, carrots, and squash. Guess what my office smells like by noon?

8. I've accepted that this is a year of adjustment, and I'll be slower as I work on on how to train while working a regular 40-hour job, dealing with the thyroid stuff, et cetera. Next year will be a better year.

9. I talked to my Endocrinologist this week, and he agreed that we should up my medication. He didn't chide me or make me feel like a silly little girl, as I feared. I don't know why I feared that. But I did.

10. I'll be giving my bra from Moving Comfort its final test this weekend. It will get the "Lubbuck, in June" test. Then, I'll write my review.

11. I've lost my keys. Yes, again. Shut up.

12. Distances so far this month: 190 Mi Bike, 40.2 Mi Run, 9700 m. Swim. Kinda puny, but whaddaya want. I'm planning for this to double in July to get ready for the REDMAN Iron Distance.

13. Never forget that sometimes, when you attempt to do extraordinary things, you will fail. But then you'll pick yourself, and learn what you need to to know to go on and do other, extraordinary things.

...
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Sunday, June 21, 2009

We interrupt our programming...

Go here, and cheer for bib #74 here.


Swim baby swim!!

Pedal baby pedal!!

Run baby run!!

...



In which charity has it's limits, and I'm a big whiney baby.


So, we headed out, the small group, on the 50-mile ride for AIDS. It involves a 25-mile out-and-back, with a climb up Tramway towards the turnaround.

As I usually find on "rides", most of the participants hauled ass, zooming away. I soon fell behind and settled into a nice, relaxing pace. I was doing about 16-17 mph on the fist part of the ride, which was mostly flat.

The climb up Tramway is substantial. Leaving the valley and going up into the foothills involves a 1000-foot (308 m.) gain in altitude over about 6 or 7 miles. On our weekly commute, the climb after work is a bear. I've been deliberately doing it on my heaviest bike, both because it's set up for commuting with various things that hold my stuff and a triple chain ring, and also because that will make riding my Danger Kitty that much more awesome in a race. The climb is a bear. I know it will make me stronger, but for some reason I continue to be much weaker than I was last year, with respect to cycling.

It might, just MIGHT, have something to do with the fact that I hate it so much. Bad things always happen to me while cycling. I fall over. I can't keep up with the group and get left behind. I have an end-over. I have a horrible flat that can't be fixed, or it can be fixed but I've got my tubulars and it sucks up most of my training time for that day. I'm harassed by drivers. It just sucks, sucks, sucks, and I resent the hell out of the fact that few multisport events don't include it.

And every time I get back on the bike, I lift my chin and say, "this will be different. I will have a nice ride today.)

So. Yesterday. As I reached the top of the climb, it started raining. Oh, YAY. Why not add RAIN to make the day complete? As I headed out from the turnaround, it started raining harder.

I called SW Tri Gal, who lives close by. No answer.

CRAP I hate cycling. It's such an encumbrance. I mean, in situations like this, if you're running, most of the time you can do something to keep yourself warm. But on a bike, you have this constant air flow going by you, cooling you off. Because, when you're 6000 feet above sea level, and it's raining, what you really want is to be is cooled off. And, you can't just find a local store or eatery to go hang out in to wait it out, because you have this giant 2-wheeled encumbrance that you don't have your lock for.

POS, I muttered. I hate cycling.

Soon enough, DP and her beloved zoomed up alongside me. I could see out over the city, and it appeared that the rainiest areas were concentrated down in the valley. I announced at that point, let's see, I think it was something like, 'f*ck this shi*t', I'm going home. I just couldn't get excited about zooming down a 6-mile hill in the rain, when I was already soaked and shivering. I figured that in the end, I'd have about 30 miles in, including a substantial climb. Time to call it a day.

DP immediately started telling me why I should go back down the hill. Her beloved said in his wonderful Scottish accents, "Yep, it's going to be a soaker." I decided he was my authority for this situation, both because he was saying something I already believed and because, I mean, he's Scottish. Scotts knows them some rain.

So then I turned around and went back about 5 miles, and of course, the aid station was gone. So, I just continued on rain dripping from my helmet, shivering, until I got home, where a hot shower and fuzzy pink robe awaited. Ahhhh. Later, I rewarded myself for the unpleasantness with dark chocolate, friends, and wine.

I hate cycling.

...

Friday, June 19, 2009

Down time.



As I was shooing the world's sweetest cat away from the baby scorpion on my kitchen floor, it occured to me that sometimes, it's good to have someone in your life to keep your ass from getting stung when you're too stupid to use common sense.

There's no real life analogy to that.
I let it stand, just as it is, for anyone to reflect upon and apply to any area of their life that they find meaningful.

So. the thyroid thing. Well, it's been nearly 3 months. I'm still tired a lot, but it's not as bad as before. I tried a b complex, and it seems to give me a boost for a few hours in the morning after I take it.

I was visiting with a colleague who is an MD, on another matter, and she happened to ask after my hypothyroid condition. What's your TSH? She queried.

4.2, I responded. My endocrinologist seemed satisfied with that number.

She frowned. Someone as active as you should really be in the low end of normal, (between 1 and 2) she said.

I confessed to my doc friend I experimented by upping my dose one day and felt good all day but and slept normally that night. She nodded. No surprise. I mentioned that I was running 20+ miles a week and cycling 60+ miles a week, no weight loss yet. She snorted.

You need to ask your doctor to up your dose.

Okay, uh I will, I promised.

Except...

Except that I'm still intimidated by white-haired guys with MDs. Me, overeducated, Iron me. I'm intimidated by the white-haired guy in the lab coat. He's perfectly nice, and yes, I know that he poops just like everyone else, but I have a hard time asserting myself .

Maybe it's the whole dad thing. I have dad issues. Don't go there. Just know that I do. My dad's untimely death left the whole thing unresolved, too, so it just kinda floats in my mind, like a preserved specimen in formadehyde.

So.

I'm guessing we're not going
swimming tonight, Baboo and I. Apparently, he fell asleep while doing some armshair research on "exhaustion" on the Internet.

That's fine. I can stand an evening of down time.


I'll stare at the baby scorpion in the jar and draw some more simple analogies.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Thursday Thirteen: Mostly eating and training stuff.

1. That hippie sprouted hemp bread I've become addicted to is a superfood. It's by "French Meadow" and it's wildly expensive, but now that the super-eating teenage boy is no longer lurking about, I can get it. Each tiny slice has 5 grams of fiber and 7 grams of protein.

2. And then there's Tostitos salsa con queso, in a jar. It's not a superfood. But it's gooooooood. Zero transfats. It's one of my daily indulgences. I put bits of it on my veggies and my boca burger.

3. I have this fantasy that when I go to see the endocrinologist for my update in a few months he'll gasp and say something like, my god, i think you're the healthiest, most compliant patient i've ever had! then he'll ask if he can call his endocrinologist friends in to see how healthy I am.

4. I'm cycling to work with Sweet Baboo twice a week now. The ride in is mostly downhill for the first 9 or so miles, and then flattish/uphill the other six. The ride home is, UGH, hard. But it's good for me; when I first started I was afraid to go downhill fast, and now I'm used to it.
Sometimes, as I struggle uphill, Sweet Baboo is ahead of me, whistling, hands off the handlebars and behind his head, making it all look sooooo easy. Luckly for him, I can't reach for things to throw at him while I'm down in my bars, trying to keep moving.

My bike parked in my office -->
5. I've discovered I have PLENTY of time for ironman training and a regular, full time job! So long as I have no children, an automatic cat feeder, an automatic pet waterer, automatic sprinklers, and I never, ever clean house.

6. Mini-baboo is now in boot camp. No cell phone or Internet for 8 weeks and that will be worse than the yelling. His last week home, we worked him hard in the yard and tightened down on the bedtime. Boy, did he bitch about all that. It's hot. Why do you make me do this? Why can't I stay up? I hate this city; it's too big. Etc. Then, he left for boot camp. In Chigaco, in June.

Go ahead. You can laugh. I did.

7. I'm peeling.

8. I've taking B vitamins now, because I don't think I was getting enough, and I was a bit tired. They seem to help.

9. With Baboo's help, I've finally started sticking to a real training plan for the first time. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we swim before work and run after work. On Wednesdays and Fridays, we bike to and from work. Weekends are for long runs/long bikes/long swims.

10. I feel like I'm just swallowing fistsful of vitamins and supplements to prevent my body from completely breaking down. Why do I feel this way? I'm only 44. On the other hand, I have hope; my friends are knee-deep in children, while I feel like I get to act like a teenager again, except this time, I'll have a driver's license and more money.

11. My other fantasy is that one day I'll show up at a triathlon where a lot of my friends are, and they'll gasp at how fast I suddenly became. Yeah. I've had that one, oh, about four years now. No gasping yet.

12. Another fantasy is that I'll show up to the Redman Iron Distance Triathlon in September and they'll be all, "oh, sorry, you're far, far too light to be an Athena."

13. I feel smaller. I don't look smaller. But I feel it.
...

Monday, June 15, 2009

Streamlining for workouts.


I was at my stylist's last Friday waiting for my appointment and saw this picture in people magazine.

I don't really know who she is, and just in case you do, I don't care who she is. I don't watch anything these days but Netflix movies and comedy central. I DO like that haircut, though, so I asked my stylist if I could wear something like that, and he was all OMG, you could TOTALLY wear that! And I could do it!

I told him that I tried a cute cut last year, but it just never stood up to my lifestyle. It looked fine as lone as I sat still and stayed out of the wind. I told him that and and he flipped a towel at me. That's because you didn't have ME for your stylist.
It was the day before the annual Pride parade, and he was all full of pride, a day early, and I told him so. But, I believed him, and I even let him take me darker, which he swore would make me look younger. I'm not convinced. I've been a bottle blonde too long, I guess. But I do like the cut.
It's passed several important tests, in which it still looked decent after the following:

1) The, I-just-ran-a-mountain-trail-marathon-wearing-a-visor-sweating-profusely test (Saturday afternoon).

2) The bicycle-helmet-for-30-miles test (Sunday morning).

3) The, I-ran-a-marathon-and-my-bike-30-miles-the-next-day-and-so-badly-sunburned-I-still-haven't-taken-a-shower (Phewwww, Sunday night) test.

Fabulous.

Meanwhile, the BRA arrived, shipped to me from Moving Comfort to review. I wore it to the trail marathon on Saturday. It passed a couple of very important tests:

1) I forgot I was wearing it.

2) It held the girls in place without being too restrictive.

3) I didn't wear any body glide, and even when I wore it alone as a top I had no chaffing

4) I was able to drop a handful of ice in my cleavage, and it stayed (meaning that there was good, "separation" which is a bra-specific term, guys.

The final test for the bra will be IM 70.3 Buffalo Springs Lake. Then I'll write my review.

...

Saturday, June 13, 2009

My tiny friends have nothing on me and I'll prove it. A race report.

SOOO, I was sitting on the toilet this morning (you're welcome for that visual) and it occured to me that, well, my feet were just too pretty. I have all my toenails.


Time for another marathon.

If you read this all the way through, there's a bonus at the end: I will scientifically prove why I am more of a studette than my tiny friends who finished this crazy marathon long before I did.

From left to right: Me, Sweet Baboo, DP, Mo, Bones, and Wiz.

So.

The "Run the Caldera" marathon at Valles Caldera wildlife preserve is an evil, evil course. Well-supported, of course. Friendly people. Well-marked. But still. E. VIL.

There was aid stations were every 3 miles like clockwork, and had HEED, pretzles, chips, and water and cookies.

At 7:30 am I, in my cute new haircut, and new bra from Moving Comfort took off running. The beginning altitude was 8400 feet. I ran for a
ways, and then started my very slow, patented run the flats and downhills, and walk the uphills. Of course, after mile 3, you start going uphill...and uphill...and uphill...until you peak out at 10,000 feet.
It occurs to me that races like this are born after the jeep has thrown a connector rod trying to get up the hill. While walking back down in search of help, one must think, "this would make a good marathon course."

Mile (about 6) OMG, what is that smell? elk manure? broken sewer lines, GAWD, what is that smell? I finally figured out that it was natural springs and sulphur. Yay. Imagine, if you will, beginning what you know to be a 2000 foot climb, with the first mile of the climb smelling like farts.

UP, up, up...Never was I so happy at the moment I reached the 10K mark, because I believed, knew, that my climbing was over. Except that I had been warned that there was a "bit of a climb" in at mile 19. Um, yeah.

So, the downhill was pretty doable, except for large parts where the road was a bit uneven and had angular cobbles and boulders on it. I had to follow the rule of "head up, eyes down" so probably missed a lot of cool scenery. I did see a lot of rocks, though. Cool rocks. I gave in and picked up a piece of obsidian as a souvenire, but left everything else because as much of a rock hound as I am, I did not have the time.

Then it was mostly flat for a while, couple of small rollers, but then mile 20 was where the bit of a climb was.
it sucked the life and joy right out of me. The temperature was in the 70s, and the sun was shining brightly, and was still up at 9000 feet.

I made little deals with myself, climbing from shady spot to another, until cresting, starting downhill....to get to ANOTHER climb at mile 23!! WTF???
I swore openly, and loudly, but since I was 4th from last and nobody was around to hear me. I made it up the hill and over, but it took the last of what I had. There was not much running going on after that. At best, there was a slow, shuffle-jog and walking.

Sweet Baboo walked about a mile out and went in with me. (I know: AWWWWWWW.) Once thing that kept me going was the big LIE that everyone told me about cold trough full of water to put my legs in. There was no cold trough of water, and the camp was a ghost town when I finished. I thought of nothing but that cold water all the way from mile 21. Fuckers.

We headed back to Albuquerque, and bought pizzas at Dions, and then I got the idea to sit in the waterfall of the new pond that Baboo just build, and dangle my legs in the coooolld water. Ahhhhh.

My goal time: 7:30. My actual finish time: 7:15. Baboo finished in 5:22.

Now. I promised a science bonus that you can use to prove that you are a better, stronger athlete than your tiny friends, and here it is: This is the equation for "work," which is a specific term in physics that is MASS x DISTANCE (or HEIGHT x GRAVITY) = WORK.

Now, for me and my slender, fit friends we can assume for purposes of this race that altitude, gravity, distance were constants and just focus on mass (weight). I weigh 175 pounds, or 79 kg. Dread Pirate weighs about 61 kg (135 lbs) at most. Bones weighs about 70 kg, I think, and I'm betting Mo weighs around 59 kg at most. AT MOST.

What matters here is not speed, because all that means is that they spent less time on the course. What matters is total WORK done. So. I hauled 175 pounds over 26.2 miles, more weight than my tiny bird-like friends hauled. Therefore, I did more work.
They may be faster, but I win; I'm a studette. SUCK IT.

You can just file that away in your "favorite excuses for big athletes" by your Aunt Misty. (I have to mention that Mo took first in her age group, so grudgingly, I'll admit that she is faster than me. But I'll still the bigger studette.)

Of course Sweet Baboo hauled 220 pounds over the same distance, so he's still a super stud.

...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Thursday Thirteen.

Miscellaneous stuff. I tried to shorten this, to no avail.

1) There are two things about my new house I don't like. One is the roaring canyon wind that blasts everything in its path occasionally. At 18% humidity, it's a dry, 35 mph wind blowing across new plants we're trying to grow.

2) the other thing is the panhandlers at the nearest grocery story. Hey, BEARDY. I'm not a SUCKER.

3) Mini-baboo is here for one last week before boot camp (4 days to go) and I've already reverted to "crazy insane Mom". I can't find my keys, and I'm slamming kitching implements on the counter top as I screetch why is there lettuce all over the counter, when I haven't eaten any today? And what happened to all the bread? I refuse to do any housework or visit the grocery store until he's gone. What's the point?

4) In my self-imposed experiment of how-far-can-I-go-before-getting-my-roots-touched-up I have determined that tomorrow is at least one week too long. oh, Don't look at me...I'm hideous...

5) Along my commute there is a BIKE BOULEVARD, and it is awesome. Speed limit for cars is 18 mph, and you feel all empowered and stuff, staring drivers down. YOU WILL YIELD TO ME. YOU WILL. YOU MUST!

6) The Navy says if Mini-Baboo doesn't lose 5 pounds by the 15th, they'll test his bodyfat, which must be below 25%. I am wholly confident a 190-pound, 5'11" 18-year-old is below 25% bodyfat, but just in case...guess who's on a 1-week crash diet now? and when did the Navy get THAT picky? UPDATE: Using a hip-to-weight ratio (a bit less unreliable than the weight/height calculation), the Navy has determined his BMI to be 23%.

6) My automatic cat feeder is the shiz. The cats, up to an hour before a scheduled feeding, will all be standing or lying down, facing the machine. I think they've formed a religion. The machine will give you food, if you only pray hard enough. If not, then you haven't prayed hard enough or you were wicked. Hey, Whitney! Quit licking yourself and pray!

7) For the first time in my life, I'm mostly kinda sorta sticking to a training plan.

8) My tubular blew on a training ride last week, and I changed it myself MYSELF all by myself. A guy offered to help and I was all, no, I have to do this myself.
Good thing, too, because when I took the glue strip out, he said, "what is that?" Dude. If you point to something that goes on my bike and say, "what is that?" then just step away. Step away from the bike.

9) My thyroid thing: I guess I'm one of the 'sensitive' ones that can't eat or take vitamins within 4 hours of taking my meds, and I've had to give up soy every day. My lattes are made from almond milk now.

10) Not having my 2-cup soy latte every morning means my body was bursting into flames every couple hours. I solved this by taking black cohosh every day.

11) We found a new bike mechanic. He was recommended by three of our friends, and his shop/house is--get this--1/5 of a mile from our house.

12) My increased training means, of course, insane hunger has returned.
This is the kind of hunger I only experience while training for and immediately after an Ironman. My body screams for food that makes NO sense. i want ice cream! and spaghetti! at the same time! put some hot sauce on that! and get me some almond butter! WHERE ARE MY EGGS?
Here we see Baboo trying desperately to satiate me -->

13) I'm not sure I'm in good enough shape to finish the Valles Caldera Marathon (8-hour cutoff) in 2 days.
I am in good enough shape to start it, though. See you at the finish line. Eventually.
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...

In which being a blabbermouth has its benefits.

Pretty soon, I'll be doing a bra review.

I'll be reviewing this one -->
It is the Lila C/D in "Ocean".

I <3 Moving Comfort. As the plus-sized endurance athlete, I have to say that everything I've ever bought from them has been very comfortable. Their compression running shorts are the bomb.

A pullover-type bra can be cumbersome if you change it in transition, because you're all wet and/or sweaty, and it rolls up, but I don't change it. Since pullover types feel better to me, I aim for one I can wear all day: swim, bike, run or crazy 10-hour trail ultra. They are, paradoxically, cheaper than a tri top in a lot of venues.

I need something that is heavy-duty since I am now apparently carb-loading with my new favorite carb-loading food,

Pasta. In a bread bowl.

I had decided that I wanted to make a goal of doing Ironman Utah in a 2-piece set without embarassing myself. But then, I thought, screw. it. If someone doesn't like the way I look, then look away. Buffalo Springs Lake 70.3 and the Redman full iron-distance will be H-O-T. Being cool and comfortable trumps "slimming" every time.
Soooooo, I had picked a pretty bra that could be worn as a top, with a racer back and that looked like the front cleavage would hold a handfull of ice.

I was a day or two away from hitting the PAY button last week when...

Moving comfort sent me an email asking me would you like to have one of our bras and write a review about it?

I was like, really? Hmm. um...uh...well...let's see...HELL YES, I'LL TAKE YOUR FREE STUFF!

(especially since I was getting ready to buy one anyway)

Stay tuned for more on this topic.

...

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Milkman 09, the Race Report.

soo...

This is a somewhat crowded little sprint, as it is the USAT "Best of the US" event for New Mexico. It's a lot of fun. It's hot, and windy, but they give you free ice creme from Schwanns at the end, and lots of cold drinks.

I've course, I was fully carb-loaded having had as I did
my dinner, which Baboo ordered without asking me and here it was, are you ready for it?

PASTA in a BREAD BOWL.

How perfect is that for the carb-loading racing individual? I ask you. It can't be more perfect than:

PASTA in a BREAD BOWL.

That's right. a Bowl made of Bread. or more precisely, Pizza dough. Fully of pasta and primavera sauce and--as Baboo discovered--icky vegetables. With melted cheese on top, of course. Otherwise, what would be the point?

It was much better than it sounds. Or as good, depending on what you expect. Delivered to our hotel room, from Dominos. Umm. Like a lot of simple carbs, it was very, very good. Then, I took a Benedryl, which if you save it for special occasions makes a very effective sleep aid. LIGHTS. OUT. I slept like a stone in one position all night.

So, the morning of the sprint, I had a couple of Electrolyte caps, some G2, and a couple of nutrigrain blueberry bars. Yum.

THE SWIM: The lake was 72 degrees, so I eschewed a wetsuit. The lake didn't taste as bad as I remember. Why is it that swims seem to take SOOOOO LONG? I think my swim was only about 12 minutes, but it seemed to take 6 HOURS. I felt pretty good toward the end, though. Stroke, stroke, turn and breathe. Stroke, stroke, turn and breathe. SIGHT. Stroke, stroke, turn and breathe. Stroke, stroke, turn and breathe....

I T1, I glanced at my socks, and decided against it.

THE BIKE: I was hauling ass, relatively speaking, trying to stay ahead of Sarah, who has been closing in on me this year. I beat her by 35 seconds at Jay Benson. I used to beat her pretty easily, but then she went and lost about 25 pounds, dammit, and now I have to WORK harder. CRAP!! Not long after the turnaround, I saw her close behind me. I sipped Heed from my aerobottle whenever I could remember to do it.
You know, each year I'm surprised afresh at the roads. I've formed the opinion that kindergartenders must be given trowels and buckets of blacktop when it's time to pave. They are THAT sloppy.

In T2, I thought about my socks again. And again, decided to skip them.

THE RUN: I grabbed my bottle of HEED, my hat, my racing flats with elastic laces and slid them onto my feet and took off. The run felt better, though. It felt easier. Not faster, but not as labored. Just as hot, though. I realized about 1/2 mile in that I'd forgotten my race belt with my number on it, and spent the rest of the run practicing a lie that nobody ever asked me to tell about why I wasn't wearing my race number. They seemed to be pretty satisfied with the number as it was written on both my arms and the fronts of both my legs.

It was in the upper 90s when I finished, and Sarah finished 8 seconds behind me,
which I figure is about how long it would have taken me to put on my socks.

Total time, about 1:42. Not the fastest I've done it. But not the slowest, either. I was 3rd in 2006, and 1st last year.

The first place awards were pitchers
that stands about 6 inches high.

Meanwhile, Sweet Baboo took first Master's Clydesdale.

Then we headed back to Albuquerque listening to loud 80s music.

video killed the radio star, video killed the radio star...

Soooooo, now we have four of these pitchers in the house. One of them is already in charge of holding all the splenda, and another one sits next to the sink and holds the hand blender we use for our protein shakes.

Any ideas of what to do with these two?

...

Thursday, June 04, 2009

New from Mattel, it's PMS Barbie (R)


I feel heavy.

I feel slow.

I feel tired.

I feel panicky - not ready for the sprint tri I have this weekend, or the marathon 1 week after that, or the half iron 2 weeks after THAT.

I feel bored.


I feel unmotivated.

I feel hungry--for all the wrong foods.

bleh.

...

Monday, June 01, 2009

And then I sipped my wine and laughed.

Saturday evening I got a phone call - right before my phone mysteriously stopped working, but that's another story. So anyway, I got a phone call from my daughter.

Sneaky girl--she used her brother's cell phone. She is programmed into my phone as having a "silent" ring tone, because she calls me with her drama all the time. This way, I don't know she's calling until later when I look at my phone, and by then whatever drama it was that she ABSOLUTELYPOSITIVELYHADTOTALKTOMEABOUTNOW has already blown over.
She's calm, I'm happy, it works for us.

But anyway, so she ABSOLUTELYPOSITIVELYHADTOTALKTOMEABOUT and my son, who is visiting her, ratted me out about the silent ringtone so she grabbed HIS phone to call me (note to self: two youngest children shall now each have silent ring tones) and complain bitterly about a dispute they were having.

My 21-year-old daughter. Called me. To complain about my 18-year-old.

So what do you think I did?

Well, I had them put on the speaker phone. Then I told my son that if she's right, he'll get his butt kicked every day he exists in boot camp.

Then I told my daughter that if he's right she needs to learn to take better care of her things.

Then I told them I didn't care who was right, and to work it out like the adults they were, and leave me out of it, because I'm now officially out of the business of Solving Disputes Among Kids.

Daughter complained bitterly about my failure to react appropriately to her very urgent need to be told that she was right and he was wrong.

I told her I loved her, while she was in the middle of her tirade andheknowsnottodothatItold himoverandoverandhesayshe
didn'tbutIKNOWhedid...

and then I hung up the phone

and then I sat in the sunshine.

...