Monday, November 29, 2010


I just feel like writing something tonight, but nothing in particular is coming to mind.  So, I guess you will be stuck with my random thoughts instead.

  • I am so thankful for girlfriends.  I love that I have a circle of friends with whom I can be completely honest, and they will, after rolling their eyes, still love me for who I am.
  • I have a trainer ride scheduled for tomorrow. It will be my first time on Buttercup since Syracuse 70.3, and I'm really looking forward to it.  Sometimes a break does a body good...real good.
  • I made some really, really good brownies today. 
  • I only ate 1 very tiny one, but I might have another.
  • Oh...the crumbs don't count, right?
  • I'm going to do my workout tomorrow after the boys go to bed in the evening.  Even though I know I won't want to, I would rather do that than get up at 5 a.m.
  • Just saying that makes me feel like a fake triathlete.  I mean, it's like the first verse of the triathlon bible that you have to get up before dawn to train!
  • I decided today that I would weigh myself on December 1 for the first time in at least a couple of months.  Now I'm all nervous.  Maybe I won't weigh myself.
  • I'm glad you like the new look of the blog.  I'm really quite fond of it myself.
  • There are way too many I's in this post.  
  • Does anyone want to buy me a TRX?  Feel free to go ahead and indulge your inner philanthropist.  I'll even send you a hand-written thank you note.
I think that is probably enough of my thoughts for one night!!  Have a wonderful evening!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Sunday Report

Do you like the new look?  I was feeling festive after we started putting out our Christmas decorations the other day, so the blog got dressed up too!

I have to be honest and say I'm glad this week is behind me.  I've been in a bit of a funk, but I'm definitely seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.  My training is starting to have a bit more focus again, which helps, and I've embraced forgiveness for the week, which has REALLY helped.  Holding onto hurt definitely does not improve my daily emotional landscape.

Training-wise it was a good week.  Lots and lots of swimming, with a little bike and run and yoga (!) thrown in.  Kel has been taking several yoga classes a week for the last month or so, and we finally found a time that we could take one together yesterday.  It was great, and now I am sore.  I guess I should be doing yoga more often!

Here are the numbers:

Swim:  3h 47m 10550 yds
Run:  40m 3.76 mi
Bike:  2h Spin classes
Aqua-jog:  30m
Yoga:  1h

Total:  7h 57m 7s

With the exception of Thursday and Friday, I have been in the zone when it comes to my nutrition.  Something has really clicked for me in the last few months.  I owe a lot of thanks to HolisticGuru for guiding me to a better relationship with food.  I feel like, for the first time in a long time, I am eating the right foods for the right reasons, and when I do have a treat, or a day of treats, I really enjoy it without guilt.  What a change for the better!!

I am working on some great giveaways I'm going to call "Trimommy's Stocking Stuffers," so be sure to stop by a lot in the next few weeks so you don't miss out!!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Jammies and Christmas Cards and the Pool, maybe

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I've been a little quiet on the blog this week because I've been feeling a little down, and just didn't have much to say.  You guys know what I'm talking about!!

The good news is, I stuffed myself silly yesterday, and wrote in big letters on top of my journal, "Today is a New Day."  I just love that feeling of starting fresh each day.  It makes the day have so much potential.

As far as my day goes, I have very little on tap.  It's almost 11 a.m., and I'm still in my jammies, sipping coffee and relaxing with the boys.  I'm thinking about making some of this. I even have all the ingredients ready. At some point I will probably mosey over to the pool to get my workout in (I'm in a pretty hefty swim block that started this week and am feeling great!)  I'm seriously considering stopping at Target (my favorite money-sucker) on the way home from the gym to pick up a couple of things for Christmas for the boys.  I have a hard time saying no to a good sale, even if it means braving lines.  I'm hoping that if I go in the afternoon it won't be quite so crazy.  Obviously, none of this will happen if I just stay here in my jammies.  I'm still undecided! ;)

One thing I'm definitely getting done today is the making of the Christmas cards.  Every year I make a photo card.  This is last year's:

In the past, I have used Snapfish, but Shutterfly has a blogger special going on right now, so I went to their website to check out what they have.  I fell in love with their Christmas card styles.  They have so many to choose from.  I especially like the foldable ones, but I won't tell you which one because I don't want to spoil it for the people who will receive one!!

Of course, picking out the card is the easy part.  Now I have to choose the pictures!!  Maybe I need some more coffee!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A Case of the Grumpies

I've been in a bad mood for the past 2 weeks.  I've been tired.  I've had little to no patience with my kids. I've been yelling...a lot.

It took me until today to realize what the problem is...I have only run once since my 50k which was over 2 weeks ago.

Yes, I know I am in recovery mode, and that is partly why it didn't cross my mind that my grumpiness was stemming from my lack of running. I am taking my recovery very seriously.  Seriously.  As a coach, I know how important it is, and I have not been fooling around with this one.

BUT, it finally hit me today that I have been missing my time on the trails.  I need to get back to my therapy - trail therapy.

Coach...I hope you are reading this!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Sunday Report

This week was a tough week, and not because of my extensive training schedule!  Ha!!  Actually, I think the past couple of weeks of racing and traveling and performing totally caught up with me this week.  I have been weary right down to my very bones.

I've still been deep into recovery as far as training goes.  I did start back to very clean eating this past Monday, and as much as I thought that would help with my energy, I think the scaled-back calories caught my body by surprise this week and added to my fatigue a bit.

My flute quartet, Dolce Flutes, had a really big concert today, and it went well. My quartet really put a lot of time into this concert, and it paid off.  Just like good training.  Some things really are universal, no?

Here are the numbers:

Swim:  2h 53m 7400 yds
Run:  41m 32s 3.92 mi
Aqua-jog:  30 m

Total:  4h 4m 32s

I'm starting on a swim block, so my pool time will be shooting up.  Thank goodness for TRISWIM!!

Also a big shout-out to my Trakkers team-mates Sonja, Michelle, and Andy for awesome finishes at Ironman Arizona today!  Sonja won her age group, so she will be Kona-bound for sure!!  Michelle finished her first IM 4th in her age group in 11:07 and might get a Kona roll-down (fingers crossed)!!  And Andy finished just before Michelle in 11:07 too!!  Congrats!!

Have a great week!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wonderful You Wednesday: When I Look In the Mirror

Welcome to Wonderful You Wednesday at My Life as a Trimommy.  This is an ongoing series where I will have a post by myself or a guest that focuses on body image and self esteem.

I haven't weighed myself for at least 8 weeks.  That's a very long time for me.  The reason I haven't weighed myself is because of what I saw in my mirror.

One day during my 50k training, I looked in the mirror as I was getting dressed.  Instead of seeing arms that could be more toned, thighs that could be a little smaller and abs that could be a little flatter, all of a sudden I saw myself.  

Now when I look in the mirror, I see

a beautiful, strong runner.

a mother of two kids.

an endurance athlete.

a friend.

a confidante.

a wife.

a musician.

a person who loves life.






What do you see when you look in the mirror?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Aflac Iron Girl Tempe: Thoughts and Pictures

Well, the 2010 Aflac Iron Girl season has come to a close.  What an honor it has been for me to have been such a part of the events this year.  I will never forget the wonderful moments of emotion, inspiration and pure joy I have felt at each and every event.

Do I have a favorite moment?  No, because how could I even begin to pick from all of them?  The balloons at sunrise in Boulder, the chilly temperatures and warm hearts in Racine, all of the mother-daughter teams at the run events, the tears of joy as women who never thought they could do this crossed the finish line, the hugs and smiles and laughter of women exceeding their, I could never pick a favorite.

To each and every woman I met, thank you over and again for sharing your stories with me, for letting all of us have a peak into your heartbreaks and healings, for sharing your joy of living each day to the fullest and for just being you.  You are mothers, daughters and friends. You are heroes.

Enjoy the pictures from Aflac Iron Girl Tempe.  Treasure the memories and come back to make more.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wonderful You Wednesday: Freedom

Welcome to Wonderful You Wednesday at My Life as a Trimommy.  This is an ongoing series where I will have a post by myself or a guest that focuses on body image and self esteem.

As I was thinking about what to write for this week's WYW post, I started reading through some quotes.  I was going to talk about how powerful our words are, but that will have to wait.  Instead I will simply leave you with this.  

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.  Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.  It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most.  We ask ourselves, "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?" Actually, who are you not to be?  You are a child of God.  Your playing small does not serve the world.  There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won't feel insecure around you.  We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.  It's not just in some of us; it's in all of us.  And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.  ~Nelson Mandela in his 1994 inaugural speech

Monday, November 8, 2010

Thoughts on My 50K Training

I hope you guys are not getting tired of my 50K talk.  I still have lots of thoughts swirling around in my noggin about the race, but one of the things I wanted to spend a little bit of time on was my training going into this race.

As you know, I am coached by Coach Mary of Train-This Coaching.  We happened to be racing together on Saturday, me at Mendon Ponds and Mary at Ironman Florida.  Coach had an amazing race despite some less-than-ideal circumstances.  I'm proud to call her coach for so many reasons, but Saturday in Florida and in New York is way up there.

When I told Mary I wanted to give this 50K a go, way back in the planning stages of this season, she said, "Let's do it!"  I was a little concerned about the timing since the 50K was a mere 7 weeks after Syracuse 70.3.  With a week of recovery after the 70.3 and a week of taper before the 50K, that left 5 weeks to ramp up for the 50K. Due to some achilles issues in June, my run volume leading up to Syracuse 70.3 was a little lower than I would have liked in light of the fact that I had a really long race on my schedule.

Just a little bit of history:  I have never run a marathon.  A lot of people asked me why I wanted to "skip over" the marathon straight to an ultra.  I think that is a very interesting question because in my mind there is not really a linear path to an ultra.  What really attracted me to this 50K was the challenge, the trail running, and the ultra mentality, which suits me to a T.  My feeling for the ultra mindset is that a race is not necessarily about going as fast as you can go, but lasting as long as you can last.  That is right up my alley.  I've always said, "I might not be fast, but I can go for a long time."  I also think of myself as being an "outdoor" person, but until now never really felt like the things I was doing supported that label, so to speak.  This 50K was a chance for me to push my endurance limits, test my mental strength, and do it outside on trails that deer run every day.

So anyway, in the lead-up to Syracuse 70.3, I began doing most of my long runs on trails.  My longest run at the start of the 5-week build to the 50k was 13.1 miles.  Clearly, I would not be able to build up in a traditional, marathon training style to that distance.

I was worried.

Coach Mary was not.

We did have discussions about which direction my training should go in order to limit the chance of injury and enhance recovery from long runs.  I had time in my schedule this fall for 2 longish runs per week, so we went with that, plus one long hike per week, and then a few shorter hikes and runs.  Almost all of my training, hiking and running, was on trails.  My longest run leading into the 50k was 2 hours and 45 minutes - 15 miles.

I know.  I didn't really want to talk about it on the blog or around the gym because I felt like people would give me that questioning look.  You know, the one that says, "Your longest training run going into a 31 mile run is 15 miles?  Do you think that is enough?"  I decided to wait until after the race was over to really talk about it.

I would not be honest if I didn't say I was a tiny bit worried.  BUT, one of the things I believe about having a coach is that you must trust your coach.  My job as an athlete is to communicate clearly to my coach how I am feeling, what my concerns are, what my goals are, and to execute the workouts she gives me.  Her job is to make sure I am prepared for the event I am training for.  The key on both sides is trust, and that is something Mary and I have in each other.

Now that I am on the other side of the 50K finish line, I can say Coach Mary's plan was perfect for the time that I had.  I was ready.  The key to the success of the training, I believe, was the combination of the two long-but-not-too-long runs, plus the long hike each week.  During the 5 weeks of heavy training, I ran 137 miles and hiked a little over 30 miles.  That is a lot of time on my feet, and it built my endurance and enabled me to come up with a nutrition plan that I had complete faith in.

Would I have done anything differently?  No.  In the time I had to prepare, the training I did was perfect.  I started the race injury-free, I had a wonderful day with few issues, and I finished strong and running.

If I had had more time, I do think I would have tried to get a few longer runs under my belt.  I don't know that it would have made my race day any different, but I do think that would have prepared my body better for the aftermath of running 50K.  Yeah...I'm really sore.  My quads feel like they are ripped to shreds.  Two days after the race, I'm still not walking normally.  The beauty of it all is, now I do have a long run under my belt, and that is more foundation for me to build upon in upcoming seasons.

And I will do another ultra.  There is no doubt about that.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Mendon Ponds 50K Race Report

Yesterday I ran my first 50K.  Now that is something I will never get the chance to say again.

I have so many thoughts rolling around in my head from the day, I don't even know where to begin.  I think I'll just start with a recap and go from there.

My friend, Ben, who is an ultra veteran with several 50Ks and a couple 50-mile races under his belt, was excited beyond belief when I told him of my plans to run a 50K.  We have done several long runs together leading up to this race, and he has really been a guide to me during this process.  He decided to race with me, and will play a big part in this report, so I would like to tell you a little about Ben.  He is married with two lovely children.  I am close friends with his wife as well, although she would never be caught dead running on a trail or anywhere else for that matter, and for that, I adore her even more.  Ben and his wife are the perfect combination of yin and yang and balance each other just about perfectly.  Ben is a teacher and talks of his job with great passion, which I love.  He also loves endurance running and training, and for him, it is so much more than fitness, it is a true way of life - a way of life that has helped him (and continues to help him) discover his true self.  He is a wonderful father and a great example of how to find balance in life with joyful perspective.


After all the preparations were done, Ben and I met up and were on our way to Mark's house where we were staying the night.  (You might know Mark from his blog, but Mark and I actually go way back to our graduate school days at Ithaca College before either of us even knew what triathlon was.) Mark and his beautiful family welcomed us into their home for an amazing pre-race meal and a place to sleep that was a bit closer to the race that Syracuse.  (Actually, Mark originally told me it was about 15 minutes from the race start.  Later he told me 20 minutes.  Friday night he said we should give ourselves about 25 minutes, and then his wife said we should take at least 30 minutes and my phone indicated 34 minutes.  Either way, it was still closer than the 90 minutes from Syracuse, so I forgive you, Mark. ;) )

Mark and his wife have 5 (yes, FIVE) adorable children, and I got some great snuggle time with the girls before dinner.

 I'm not exactly sure why I was wearing a headlamp, but I didn't really care, because I had two little ballerinas in my lap!

 Ben and Mark

 The pre-race meal Mark's kids made for me.  It was delish.

Alaina's meal was equally amazing.  
Mark's family is so big, I couldn't fit everyone into the picture!


After a pretty restless sleep that involved a dream where Ben and I were magnificently late to the race, I got up before the alarm went off for my usual pre-race breakfast.  I was feeling excited and nervous for the race.  Ben went outside to check the weather - cold and misty, but not snowing - so I got dressed in running tights, a long sleeve shirt, a short sleeve Trakkers shirt over that, and a lightweight running jacket.  I put a fleece on over that, we loaded the car and were on our way by 6:45 a.m.

Once we got to the race site, we parked where the finish line and rest station were being set up and had to walk across the road and up the hill to pick up our packets.  This was a very tense time for me.  Ben mentioned later that I seemed to be very deep in thought during that walk.  I was also very, very cold, which was partly due to the fact that it was very cold outside, and partly due to nerves kicking in.

After we got our numbers and chips, we went back and set up our rest station.  Ben brought two big plastic boxes, one for fuel and the other for clothing and first aid.  I also brought my "You Rock" balloon that the girls from the gym gave me.  The rest station was under a pavilion with some tables which was great because we didn't have to worry about our stuff getting wet.

We snapped a quick pre-race pic and then went to sit in the car for a few minutes to warm up before the race began.

At a few minutes before 8, everyone sort of moseyed on up to the start line and jumped up and down to stay warm until someone yelled "Go,"  and off we went.  My 50K had begun.

During our long runs, Ben and I discussed the matter of whether or not we would run the whole race together.  I felt like I didn't want him to feel like I was holding him back, and he felt like he didn't want me to feel like I had to run with him if I wanted time to myself.  Ultimately, we decided we would run the first two loops together and then just take it from there based on how we were feeling.

The race consisted of 5 10K loops.  The first 1/2 mile or so was on the road, which came to be my least favorite part of the race.  The first time, though, it wasn't bad because we had just started.  As we came to the first intersection I had to laugh when the volunteer there said, "Take it easy.  You've got a long day ahead of you."  Not what I'm used to hearing from spectators, that's for sure!  As we crossed onto some grass that lead to the trail another volunteer said, "Only 49 and a half K left!"  I did not find that helpful. :)

Once we hit the trail, Ben and I were running at a nice easy pace.  After about a mile I started to warm up, but noticed pretty quickly that my feet were already soaking wet.  The course at Mendon Ponds is pretty hilly and the website states: "This is not a PR course."  Our strategy was to walk the hills from the get-go and try to  conserve so we could run for as long as we could.  We were not alone in this strategy and ended up doing the first loop with a guy from New Hampshire named Paul and coming into the finish of the first loop with another group of about 6 people.

One of my favorite moments during the first loop was coming up to the one aid station on the course.  It was Carol's aid station, and as I was thanking her, she shared with me that she did this every year in honor of her late husband who was a runner.  What a tribute!

I was glad to see the rest station ahead and was looking forward to changing my soaked socks.  I changed my socks, refilled my handheld bottle, snapped a picture, grabbed a few Pringles, rang the cowbell (I'm not sure how the other runners felt about that), and we were on our way.

My nutrition plan for the first 4 loops consisted of a 10 oz hand held bottle of EFS Drink that I refilled with water at the one aid station on the course, plus EFS Liquid Shot in a flask with a bit of water.  I had 300 calories in each gel flask, and my goal was to finish one flask every two loops.  I also grabbed a bite or two solid food at the aid station on the course and our rest station.

Loop #1:  1:13:12
T1: 4:12

There was a 5K, 10K and 20K that started a little bit after we were into our second loop.  Just before the fasties started passing us, it started to snow big wet snowflakes.  It was very beautiful.  And then, it was very cold.  My feet felt much better in my new socks, though, so I was really glad I took the time to change them.  We continued our same strategy of walking the hills as the people running the shorter races passed us by.  I unconsciously started to speed up, and then Ben gently reminded me we had a ways to go yet.  Towards the end of the second loop my left ankle started to bother me just a bit, so I made a mental note to put some BioFreeze on it when we got to the rest station.  A little bit before the end of this loop Ben told me that he would like to continue running together if that was okay with me.  And it was.

As I came down the grassy hill towards the rest station I heard a cowbell.  At first I thought maybe someone had felt the intense need to borrow mine, then I realized it was Mark and Alexa , one of my Train-This teammies, with Mark's boys in tow.  My spirits, that were not really low, were lifted even higher by the sight of my friends coming out in the freezing weather to cheer us on.  I came into the rest station and asked Ben to hand me, "you know, the stuff that takes away pain."  I was having a hard time remembering the name of the BioFreeze.  I was feeling good, but a bit chilly, and Mark snapped a quick pick of my cowbell ringing at the end of loop 2.

Loop #2: 1:17:16
T2: 5:35

As we started out on Loop 3, the snow was still coming down.  I very clearly remember thinking several things.  First: I am so blessed to be out here.  Second: When the snow hits my face, it is very cold in a weirdly comforting way.  Third:  I wish it would stop snowing, but I'm going to try not to think about that.  Fourth:  During this loop I will surpass the longest run I have ever done up to this point in my life.

Maybe it was the last thought, but this is when it started to sink in that I was running a really long way in one day.  Duh.  I know that sounds silly, but I think unless you have done it before you can't really wrap your head around it in a way that makes sense.  Kind of like childbirth.

This loop was quiet.  Ben and I were just running and not chatting too much.  There were not very many runners on the course that we saw.  The weather finally started to improve, and I realized that my shirts under my jacket were quite wet.  I was never cold, but I always felt on the verge of being chilled during this loop.  The snow had stopped, and I made the decision that I would change into a new shirt and socks at the rest station. After the midpoint of loop 3 was probably the hardest point of the race for me.  I tweaked my ankle a couple of times and had a couple of almost falls.  My feet were starting to hurt and, although, the thought of quitting never even crossed my mind, I was definitely tiring on this loop.

At the rest station, I changed into a dry long-sleeved shirt and switched out my jacket for a vest.  I also grabbed a dry hat and new socks.  The best thing I did at this point was take two Advil and eat some mini 'Nilla wafers.  Seriously, have you ever had those things?  OMG!!

Loop #3:  1:24:10
T3:  7:30

We started out onto my least favorite part of the course, the road.  Ben mentioned later that I never really talked on this part.  I remember always feeling cold, probably because we had just stopped for a bit, and slow.  My feet always hurt the most on the road too.

The first half of this loop was still sort of quiet for me.  Ben and I were running well together, and seemed to sense each other's needs without much discussion.  The course was marked with orange cones and paper plates on wooden stakes.  As a hill approached one of us would say, "plate" or "tree" which meant that is where we would start walking.  Same thing for when we would start running.  I never felt that either of us wanted to be running when the other wanted to be walking.  We were in sync, and it felt comfortable and very safe for me.

By the fourth loop we each had a definite sense of what was coming.  There was the watertower hill.  There was the steep hill in the woods.  There was the steep hill with gravel that I asked for a rope on starting in the 4th loop.  Ben never came up with one.  There was the really muddy part followed by the strangely dry spot.  There was the spot that Ben forgot about on the 2nd or 3rd loop that I reminded him of everytime thereafter.  There was the part with the little trail leading up to the perfect tree for taking a potty break.  There was the part where we crossed another path that was lined with trees with dark bark and a carpet of yellow leaves, which was definitely one of my favorite parts.  There was the part with the hills that were short enough we didn't have to stop running and that felt so good.

About halfway through the 4th loop, the Advil kicked in.  I also think I might have gotten a little behind on nutrition in the 3rd loop which contributed to the hard patch.  Then I felt like the end was in sight.  Only 15k to go and down from there.  My spirits really picked up and I felt great.  The interesting thing about this loop is that it seemed like we were the only people running the race.  Aside from volunteers, we did not see anyone else on the course.  As we finished our 4th loop, there were a few people there who had just finished their 5th loop.  The race director asked us if we were finished...nope, 1 loop to go!!

I filled up my handheld with coke this time, grabbed a pack of shot blocks and some pringles, rang the cowbell, and we were off again.

Loop #4:  1:25:51
T4:  5:09

Back onto the dreaded road, I was thinking that we might be coming close to a marathon.  I looked at my Garmin, and at that exact moment it said 26.20!!  That was a great moment, although, I have to say, I hope if I ever run a road marathon my time will be a bit faster!

This loop was great.  The end was in sight, the coke and the shot blocks were just what I needed, and I was warm and comfortable.  Even the gravelly steep rope-less hill wasn't that bad.  Especially because I picked up a souvenir plate for a trophy right before we went up.

I do remember thinking my right big toe was hurting, but I was happy and having fun.  We were completely alone, and I kept saying, "Are we the only people in this race?"  I remember feeling so grateful that I had been able to spend the day with Ben, outside in a beautiful place that God had created for us.  Ben and I had both watched that youtube video I put up on my preparations post many times.  Unfortunately, neither of us was very good at singing it, although we did try.  I had my ipod in my pocket, and for a split second I had the great idea that we could both listen to it at the same time.  Before I even finished the thought I realized that was a disaster waiting to happen, so I shut it, but not before Ben intuited what my idea was.  Yeah...I will never live that one down.

About a half mile from the finish, Ben asked me if I wanted to run it in by myself.  Without hesitation, I told him no.  We had run the whole thing together and I wanted to finish it that way.  We came to the grassy hill for the last time, and with smiles and cheers we crossed the finish line and were given our medals.

Loop #5: 1:30:17

Total Time:  7:13:12
Total Distance:  31 miles, although my Garmin said 32.15.  Not sure how I got an extra mile in, but maybe our trips to the rest station, potty breaks and maneuvering around the mud was enough to add up to a mile.

We ended the day with hot soup and bagels in a toasty warm lodge.  We changed in the stinkiest bathrooms ever, and I came through with only 1 tiny, red blister.  We made our way home via the Starbucks at the rest station where we treated ourselves, totally guilt-free. to whatever we wanted.  I chose a Peppermint Mocha, and it was amazing.

In reflecting on this amazing day, I've had many thoughts.  First of all, I am so blessed in my life to be able to take an entire day to run in the woods.  I am very proud of my efforts and very thankful that Ben was there to run with me every step of the way.

I've thought a bit about how it would have been different if I were alone. I still think I would have finished.  I definitely would have relied upon my ipod for those hard patches.  I might have walked a little more.  I think I didn't finish because of Ben, but my race was definitely what it was because of him.  We had a wonderful day of laughs and stories and reflective thought together.  There are very few people who I think I could have run with for that long, and I am so thankful for his support and friendship.

Do I feel any differently today?  Yes and no.  I am surprised that I didn't have an overwhelming sense of emotion at the end of the race.  I think that has to do with the fact that I always expected to finish.  I am very proud.  I have a new appreciation for my own abilities in terms of physical endurance.  I want more.  I want to go longer.  I know I can do it.  I ran a long way yesterday, and I wouldn't change it for the world.

Big thanks to my wonderful husband for making it possible for me to train long and hard for an event like this. He gets me.  Huge thanks to Coach Mary.  Her training was spot-on and is definitely something I will post about later on this week.  Huge thanks to all my friends, Trakkers teammates, and family that cheered me on. I felt that encouragement all day long.  Big thanks to my sponsors, Trakkers, First Endurance, and Saucony.

And, most of all, I thank God for giving me such a beautiful life.

Friday, November 5, 2010


Here it is, the day before my first 50K.  I am feeling excited, nervous and ready to go.  I am almost done with preparations, and then I'll be hitting the road this afternoon around 4:15.

Here is what says for tomorrow: here's the thing.  I will not worry about the weather, because what good will that do, right?  So, in an effort to feel like I am doing everything in my power to not let the weather get to me, I am pretty much bringing every piece of winter run gear I have.

So, maybe not everything, but pretty darn close.  In case you were wondering, that is 1 pair of running tights, 1 pair of capri running tights (I am forever hopeful), 5 shirts of various weights, 5 pairs of socks (3 wool, 1 lightweight, 1 compression), 1 vest, 3 long sleeve pullovers of various weights, 1 wool beanie, 1 visor, 1 pair of running gloves and 2 pairs of shoes, plus my clothes to change into after the race.  Not pictured is a wind jacket, a fleece beanie, another pair of running gloves that I bought last minute today in case it is raining tomorrow and I want to change them and a cowbell (you never know when you might need a little cowbell!).  The run is five 10k loops, so I can change every lap if I so desire.

Weather, hear me now....BRING IT ON!!!

I also had the requisite race dream last night.  The dream race was actually an epic bike race.  In typical dream fashion, I was late, despite the fact that I was late, I stopped into Starbucks to go to the bathroom, when I finally get to the start I realize that instead of my bottle holder cage, I have the baby seat that goes on the back of the bike.  Then I realize I left all of my nutrition back at the hotel.  There was something else involving school buses, but I can't quite remember that part.  Ben was with me every step of the way encouraging me and making the most of the situation - at least there is one part of the dream that I can definitely count on coming true!!

Every day I've been watching this awesome video to get pumped up and excited to race.

The ipod is charged up and ready to go with a specially made play list just for this race.  I might not need to use it, but I am bringing it, just in case.  Here's my playlist - a lot of inspiration, a little bit of motivation.

Clearly, I have broad tastes in music.  I find that when I have to dig deep, only favorites will do.

And, lastly, my friends at the Y surprised me today (and totally made me cry) with a beautiful good luck card and a balloon that will definitely be gracing my rest station tomorrow.

Seriously!!  I am so blessed!  On the bottom of the card it says, "We create our tomorrows with what we dream today."

My goal for tomorrow is to dig deep and to be a light that shines onto the beautiful people that will be with me, both in body and spirit.  Thank you!!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wonderful You Wednesday: Expectations

Welcome to Wonderful You Wednesday at My Life as a Trimommy.  This is an ongoing series where I will have a post by myself or a guest that focuses on body image and self esteem.

Think about expectations you might have of
people around you.  

I expect my kids to listen to me.

I expect people to be polite.

I expect the cashier at the grocery store to bag my groceries just the way I like.

Now think about this:  Do you have any control over these expectations?

Unfortunately, no matter how hard I try, my kids will only listen to me when they choose to.

Let's face it, there are rude people.  Not everyone is going to be nice.

And, the cashier hardly ever bags my groceries the way I like, despite the fact that I bring my own bags and carefully load up the grocery belt with the items in the exact order that they should be put in the bag, so as to best facilitate unloading in a quick orderly manner with avoidance of fruit bruising, bread smashing and olive bar spillage and minimal plastic bag, sorry about that.

On the other hand, what do do you expect of yourself?

Do you expect yourself to not have the willpower to eat the way you know you should?

Do you expect yourself to walk when the running gets hard?

Do you expect yourself to panic in the water while you are swimming?

The interesting thing about expectations is that while we rarely can control how other people act and think, we have complete control over our own actions and thoughts.  We often set ourselves up for destructive behaviors by expecting those behaviors to happen.  

What would happen if we just started expecting great things of ourselves?  If we took all of the negative expectations we might not even realize we have because they have been ingrained in our very souls and turned them into positive expectations, how would we begin to see ourselves?

My challenge to myself and to you this week, is to take just one expectation and change it.  It is as simple as telling yourself in the mirror what you expect.  Let's see what will happen if we begin to expect great things of ourselves.

What expectation will you change?

“Don't lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality.”

Ralph Marston

October in Numbers

This month officially will go down in my book as the month I fell in love with running.  Also, I have not ridden Buttercup since Syracuse 70.3 (over a month ago) and today was the very first day I have missed her.  Time to get back on the bike!!

Swim: 1h 6m 2500 yards
Bike: 4h all spin classes
Run: 22h 55m 48s 129.65 miles
Hike/Walk: 9h 12m 30.12 miles
Strength: 20m (it's better than nothing!!)

Total: 37h 33m 48s