Monday, May 25, 2009

A Great Weekend

Last week was a busy week with soccer, choir concerts, more soccer and just end of the school year stuff. The kids have 8 days left of school and are anxiously counting down.

Saturday my TNT cycling team had our last long ride before Tahoe. And boy was it a tough one. The ride was out in Blanco and we started at 7:00. Because of that, I spent the night with one of my teammates who lives only 30 minutes from Blanco. She also hosted a pasta dinner Friday night for anyone who wanted to come and we had a decent turnout. It all made Saturday morning much more tolerable.

Most of the team was able to make it out for the ride, so we had lots of riders. We started off in 3 big groups, but the ride is FULL of hills, so once we started hitting those, the groups divided out a little more. I settled in with the same group of riders I've ridden with most of the season. We ride really well together - same pace and good company. The morning was a little overcast, but very humid. I had a hard time breathing on a couple of the hills due to the humidity, but managed to work through it. The sun came out for a little while and I thought it was going to get really hot, but the cloud cover came back toward the end. The fun part of the ride was heading out to Luckenbach. Everyone wanted to sing the song!

After the ride was over we had a nice treat. One of our teammates has a son who is in massage school. As part of their training, they have to do massages outside of the school. For free. And they were waiting at the end of the ride for us. SWEET!!!!! After the massage we headed to one of the local restaurants for some more socializing before heading back home.

As soon as I got home I had to shower and get ready for an event we had to go to for my husband's job. His boss (who is also a client of mine) is heading off for a six week bike ride to Canada. I'm very jealous! How fun would that be?

Sunday we slept in a little and went to the late service at church. Madison had been wanting to go shopping for a long time, so I took the kids and got them some new clothes. Sunday night was an Aztex soccer game. It got a little sloppy thanks to the rain that came during the game.

This morning I got up early and headed downtown to spectate at the local tri. I had some friends and TNT buddies doing the tri and wanted to cheer them on. I'm really glad I went. It felt weird not participating, but it was fun cheering for everyone. After the race the kids and I headed out to my parents to relax around the pool for a while. I like when we get to do that.

And so another long weekend comes to an end. Luckily for me it's a 4 day work week this week and a 3 day work week the two weeks after that (due to my trip to Tahoe).

I also want to say thanks to all the men and women who are in the military and put their lives on the line each and every day so that we can have the freedom we have.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A New Running PR and a Great Ride With Teammates

Got up this morning to temps in the mid-60s. Awesome! Much better running weather than 80 degrees. Ate my breakfast and headed down to the start line. Got a nice little warm up jog on the way there. Talked to a couple of friends before lining up.

According to my garmin, we started right on time. I know the course well and run much of it in my daily runs, so I knew what to expect and I could visualize the whole course. When we reached the first mile marker I hit my split button and saw 8:00. Usually I'm at 8:30. But I felt good and kept going. Mile 2 was 8:14 and mile 3 was 8:12. The last .1 was :45. Total time: 25:10, which is a new PR for me. I keep hoping that I'll be able to place in these smaller races, but I ended up 4th in my age group. I'm very happy with my time.

After the run, I walked home, changed into cycling clothes and headed off to meet a couple of guys from my TNT team. We headed north into the headwind at the start of the ride, rode out about 20 miles and turned and came back. Total miles today on the bike: 43:78. Mentally, I needed that today. Wind and hills only make you stronger. Plus, I got to ride with some of my favorite riding buddies.

Tonight: relaxing in the recliner watching the season finale of Survivor!!!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

What a Week

Tuesday night was kick-off for the next Team in Training season. I'm going to be a captain with the run team this season, so off to kick-off I went. It was great to see so many people come out and want to raise money despite the lovely economic situation our country is in. And you know it's a small world when one of the people signed up for your team actually went to high school with you. Wow! It's going to be an interesting season.

Wednesday night I headed out to hill repeats. I got there before anyone else so I figured I would go ahead and start and see how many hills I could get in. I headed up the hill feeling good, cooled off in the cul-de-sac at the top of the hill like we normally do, and then started my decent. You can build up a lot of speed if you want to, but still being a little cautious on the bike, I feathered the brakes more than normal on the way down. And it's a good thing I did. As I got near the bottom something felt "off" to me. I slowed down even more with the intent of maybe stopping and that's when I heard it. Pssssssstttttttt. The front tire was flat. I couldn't get stopped and clipped out quick enough and down I went. This time on the left side. Some minor road rash on the left elbow and a big bruise behind my right knee from where my leg hit the bike frame. I'm starting to feel a little jinxed on the bike. I was so mad that I went home and ran 4 miles.

Thursday after work I headed out for a run. I was hoping to get 4 in, but running at 5pm in the lovely heat and humidity is not something I'm use to at this point in the year. I got 3 in and called it quits.

Friday was a "get things done" day. We took Tank back to the vet for a check-up and to get his heartworm medication, I registered for Sunday's local 5k, clothes got washed and my road bike got yet another new tire and tube put on. I also caught up on some tv watching that got missed this week.

This morning I woke up early, loaded my cycling gear, and headed of to meet the run team. Since this was the first group practice I wanted to be there at the start. As soon as the instructions were given and the runners took off, I took off to meet the cycle team. When we headed out, I was very nervous. I was afraid of getting another flat and crashing yet again. After about 10 miles I started to relax just a little bit. We had a great group of us riding together that stayed together until our first stop around 20 miles. From there we took off and ended up in a couple of groups, but still close enough we could see each other. The group of us together decided to do the extra 5 mile loop. As we were heading west on that loop, a cold front hit. One moment we were hot and going with very little wind and the next moment we were chilly and fighting a huge head wind. It was that quick. As we turned the corner to head north, I got nervous again. You could tell that it had rained there because the streets were slick and the crosswind was VERY strong. At one point I felt like it might blow me off the road. I didn't want anyone near me and got very close to calling the sag vehichle to come get me. But I kept going. We somehow managed to dodge the rain until we got close to the end of the ride. And it didn't start raining hard until we got back to the starting point and were loading our bikes. Then the team went to eat together like we normally do. I ended up with 51.9 miles.

When I got home, I took a long shower and then tried to take a nap in the recliner. I never did fall asleep, but it felt good to just lay there. Then I had to take Madison to volleyball practice.

Tomorrows plan assuming the weather cooperates: 5k in the morning followed by another bike ride!

Monday, May 11, 2009

I'M BACK!!!!!

...on the bike, that is.

Last week's workouts were a little less than stellar. After my "big" 10 mile ride outside on Monday, I attempted to do yoga on Tuesday. I say attempted, because I couldn't do half the moves. It was very frustrating. I can do a one -arm downward dog, but you don't want to see my attempt at a one-arm push-up. Not pretty. Then Wednesday I did a very slow 3 mile run on the treadmill to see if running would hurt the shoulder. I don't think it did, but either I was wrong or I slept weird Wednesday night, because I woke up Thursday morning and my whole upper back/neck/shoulder area was TIGHT. It was so tight that I called a couple of places Thursday to see if I could get in for a massage over my lunch hour. It didn't happen. I decided that my body may be telling me I was trying to do too much too fast, so I didn't work out Thursday night.

Friday night was spent running all over town like a chicken with my head cut off. My husband had to go out of town, so I got to be single mom all weekend. Madison had volleyball practice Friday night and we found out Thursday night that I needed to be at a parent meeting for Dalton's soccer Friday night as well. Both at the same time. Yeah, that would work if I could clone myself. Fortunately, we know some of the parents from Madison's volleyball team so I asked one if they could take Madison and bring her home. That was taken care of, so off Dalton and I went to soccer. After that meeting I ran him back home, got him some dinner, made sure he was packed and took him to one of his teammates house so he could spend the night and ride with them to his game in San Antonio the next morning while I would be out for my long bike ride. After dropping him off, I headed to the store to get gatorade and goodies for my ride and then headed to Taco Bell for my dinner and finally got home around 9:00. I ate and got my things ready and then soaked in a hot bath for a bit hoping that would relax my shoulder a little.

Saturday morning I woke up early and headed north for the Armadillo Hill Country Classic. This is one of the events some of our teammates fundraised for, so that meant we had some who would be doing the 105 mile route. Several teammates were planning on 80 and others were doing 60. I had originally been asked to do the 80 mile route with one of my teammates who also happens to be a survivor and is the honored hero for this season. He is an awesome guy with a great attitude, so I had no problem agreeing to this. But when I got there Saturday morning, coach had a different plan. He asked if I would be willing to get sagged forward a little bit so that I could meet up with one of the teammates doing the 105 route and have fresh legs to help bring him in. He told me I could ride the first 20 miles until I got to the third rest stop and then sag forward a bit and ride the rest of the route. So, that's what I did.

I tried to stay with Mike (the honored hero) at first, but he was just so dang excited, he took off. So I just kind of did my own thing, riding with teammates when I could find them, until I got further down the road. I do have to say that I was a little jittery in the beginning. When someone would get too close or cut in front of me I would put my hands very close to those brakes. But, I made it to the rest stop just fine. No so for Patrick. He popped a spoke about mile 19. But, he has done that before, so he was prepared and had extra spokes in his seat post. There were mechanics at the third rest stop, so he got it fixed and sagged forward with me. When Terry, Mike, Shelly and John came through the rest stop we were at, we joined them and headed off to finish the ride with them. And let me just say that neither Terry nor Mike needed my "fresh legs". Those guys were riding like they could go all day. It was wonderful to see their excitement. As for me, the heat started getting me latter in the ride, so at the aid stations I would stop and pour ice water over my head. When I stopped at the last one about 5 miles out Terry kept riding and said he wasn't stopping. Mike followed right behind him. I hurried up and dumped the water on my head and then told Patrick we needed to catch them. It took a little bit, but we did catch them. And it was awesome to be just right behind them as they crossed the "finish line". I checked my bike computer and I had gotten in 85 miles! Not bad for the second outside ride after a crash, huh?

I had planned ahead for the heat and packed a coke in my cooler, so I never made it to the proverbial "TNT finish line". When I got to my car, I stopped, got off my bike, grabbed my coke, and headed over to the curb to sit down and drink it. And then I lay there with an ice cold rag on my head and got water dumped on me. It felt good.

After I was finally cooled off a bit, I changed clothes and waited for our other 105 mile rider to come in. After she came in, I headed home to shower and headed to the victory party. There wasn't too great of a turnout since it's a local event, but Patrick, Mike and Terry were there, so that it was worth it. After that I headed home, had a glass of wine, and went to bed.

Sunday morning we slept in a bit (by that I mean that I didn't get out of bed until 7:30). Madison and Dalton made their own breakfast AND washed dishes, so that was great. I had my normal shake and we headed off to Sunday school and church. After church we headed home and put on our swimsuits so we could head out to my parents and spend the day by the pool. My parents were still out of town as well so it was just the three of us. The kids had fun swimming and playing in the pool and I just enjoyed laying in the lounge chair relaxing. I was in the sun for a little bit, but pulled the chair on the patio in the shade and took a nap for a while as well. It was a very relaxing Mother's Day.

Today was back to work but it was a slow day as most of the office was out on business. I finally got my massage after work (man am I tight - need to go back for more) and then headed to Madison's soccer game.

Today officially starts my marathon training for the Marine Corps Marathon, so when I got home I headed out for a run at 7:00. It felt a little cooler, but by the time I was done with my 4 miles I was soaked. I fixed me some dinner, put the kids to bed and then at 9:00 took Roscoe out for his walk. I'm soaked all over again. It's going to be a long hot summer!

And just for laughs.....remember when I mentioned we did curb side collections and made over $800. Well, most of that was in $1 bills. I didn't really think anything of it until I got ready to take it to the bank to deposit. First of all, $400-$500 in $1 bills does not fit in the little tube at the drive thru. Second of all, I started thinking that even if it did, I may not want to send it all at once. They would probably get the money and go "yep, this lady is a stripper".

Monday, May 4, 2009

Curb Side Collections, Back on the Bike, and Swine Flu or whatever the heck they are calling it these days

After my crash last weekend I put my road bike on my trainer. I was on it Monday - Thursday, but took a break Friday night to go to a "ladies night" with the women from my Sunday school class. That was a nice break. Found out some interesting things about some of them, including how they met their husbands and the fact that one of them makes her own wine. I had already reached my limit when they opened her bottle so I didn't get to try it, but I hear it was very good. We've already decided we have to do that again.

During the week I went to the bike shop and got me a new helmet. I also got new tires for my road bike, but didn't put them on yet (not like I could with the shoulder anyway) because I knew I'd have a lot more trainer time come the weekend.

Even though I knew I wasn't going to ride with them, I went to meet up with the team early Saturday morning. I had some jackets made up to sell and wanted to show the samples to the team. Then I headed to Dalton's soccer game. It was a great game. After the game I was going to head to San Marcos to watch Brandi sky-dive, but she called and said she cancelled because it was so overcast, so I headed back to where the team would finish their ride and grabbed some lunch and waited for them to come in.

I was still a little short on my fundraising for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and had planned to do a curb side collection Sunday afternoon. I borrowed the signs that Patrick had made and got him and Brandi (along with bribing Madison) to come help. Patrick and I put our bikes on the trainers on the side of the road and Brandi and Madison walked the line of cars collecting the money. We were there for a little over 2 hours and were able to collect over $800!!!!!! Truly a success. That's why I love the cycle team. There are some AWESOME people on the team.
We grabbed some lunch on the way home and then Patrick was awesome and put my new tires on my road bike for me. I got home today and headed OUTSIDE for the first time since the crash. My goal was to get in 10 miles and I did. It was slow and I was a little "cautious" at
times, but it was good. Hopefully I'll be good to go Saturday for the long bike ride at the Armadillo Hill Country Classic.

And on the other news front today...... I got a call just before leaving work today from the place where Dalton goes to after school care. She said that someone at his elementary school "possibly" has the swine flu and the school will be closed Tuesday and Wednesday, but that they would be accepting the kids and would keep them all day. Uggghhh. We don't know full details, but someone has said the kids will not have to make up these two days. If that's the case, I will be very happy because if they have to make up the days and go later into June, the last day of school could interfere with my century ride that I've been training and raising money for. And this is an important year for Dalton since he will "graduate" from 5th grade. Stupid swine flu!