athletic events

What is Zumba?

Though I knew nothing about it when I registered, I now understand that Zumba is some Latin fitness program that uses dance and aerobics.  I am confident that my 5 year dedication to “So You Think You Can Dance” will pay off.   Since Zumba incorporates hip-hop, samba, salsa, merengue, mambo, and Bollywood (Katee & Joshua!!!), I am certain the Wednesdays spent watching dancing talent on TV, sipping a glass of wine or beer and eating fried dough will pay off.   Squats, lunges and martial arts are apparently also included in the line up.  These don’t excite me nearly as much as the mambo.  I seem to remember some pretty sore hamstrings post basketball court lunging.  Nevertheless,  I will be interesting.  Hopefully no lifts will be required.

fat woman working out doing sit ups

Me, working out. Special thanks to Afton for the "spot-on" depiction of me.

Stay tuned for the results.

Me=Sausage – Wetsuit=Casing

In preparation for the lake swim this week, I had to try on the wetsuit I bought a couple of years ago for the Chicago Triathlon.  Some of you may remember that the original purchase of the wetsuit I fondly call Michelin was one the most horrible shopping experiences of my life. That was in preparation for Accenture.  Today, I am heavier and rounder than I was a couple of years ago, but I spent $200 on the thing and need to use it for this program.  The lake is 67 degrees and Thursday evening we are doing our first lake swim.  I need to try it on.  So, I went upstairs to my non air-conditioned room on the most humid night in recent history with the worst sunburn I have had since 6th grade, sprayed some goo on my ankles feet and legs and began the process of pulling the wetsuit on.  Inch by inch I progressed, I was nearly out of energy, sweat was rolling into my eyes, and I had only reached just past my knees.  This was going to be a long haul.  Pulling pushing putting twisting aching and rolling on the floor and finally, the thing was on past my ass.  With a twist and pull of the arms, over my shoulders (added tire marks to the sunburn) – but it was on.  I couldn’t get it zipped, so I went downstairs to have husband zip Michy.  It took a few minutes and some construction equipment, but finally, it was ON.  Wet sweat hair plastered on my head, I looked at my husband who asked  “Is it too big?”  I nearly killed him.  The scary part is that the whole process took over 30 minutes.  I am supposed to swim at the lake with a group of people after work.  I am NOT going to go through that workout in front of humans.  My strategy is this:  Dress in the gym at work, but only wear the suit to my waist.  Have K pick me up in front of my building.  At the beach, finish dressing and have K zip me up.  I hope it all works out and that I don’t spontaneously combust in the car or while we are waiting to start swimming.  I really question why I joined this program.

I’ll never do that again…Tales of Training gone bad

I hate meeting new people.  People tell me they don’t believe me when I mention this to them.  I am a pretty outgoing person when you get to know me (surprised by that?) But initially, I am filled with a sense of dread and angst before I meet new folks.  On that note, yesterday was heinous.  You see, my gal pal K and I signed up for another training program for tris.  Last night was the FURLKLE training or some crap like that.  No, the word is FARKLE which still sounds like IKEA furniture.  The plan was for me to meet K, do the w/out with her, load my bike onto her car and drive home.  Well, due to uncontrollable and horrible circumstances, K couldn’t meet me.  So, here is a recap of my LOVELY evening:

5:46 – Leave work on my bike to head up north for training.

5:50 – Nervously dodge cars and buses on the unfamiliar route.  Nearly get hit numerous times.

6:00 – Arrive at location, park bike and enter training building a full 30 minutes too early.

6:10 – 6:20 – Stand uncomfortably waiting while people mill in.  Note that each athlete seems to be the size of these people.  Listen to high pitched ramblings of tri stories and bragging.  Grow more and more nervous.

6:30 – Learn of the quick 3/4 mile jog…easy paced…to get to the training area at the softball diamonds.  Where there will be running and fast running in intervals.

6:40 – Begin the jog, realize my run is a slow jog and I feel slow but am going as fast as I can it is hot hot hot, everyone is passing me, wait how do I walk 2 jog  4 with this group why am I here I really don’t like this and don’t like one person especially that one with the stinkeye where is K

7:15 – One lap down everyone is evil I need to get away from them I am going back.  Fuck the FARTKLELSLEKLS

7:35 – Bags in hand, load up bike, head to train.

7:45 – Jackson Street elevator broken.  Attempt to carry 200 million  lb bike down stairs with my bike cleats on, sliding bumping jumping bike breaks $100 bike  bag.

7:50 – wait on train platform trying to guess which car will be a bike friendly car, inevitably guess wrong and have to run on platform with cleats on granite nearly kill myself but make it.

8:00 – Finally, on train.

8:30 – drink full glass of wine, cry to dear niece

8:45 – feel better

9:00 – resolve to NOT do this again

10 mile D-Day

The big day is upon me. I reviewed the rules and looked closely at the time requirements for the 10 mile run, they specifically state that you have to be able to complete the full run in 2 ½ hours.  When K and I started training for this, we were optimistic that out times would decrease as our fitness levels improved.  We have been training since February for goodness sake.  K and I did 8 miles a couple of weeks ago and realized that we would be unable to do the full 10 miles in the allotted time.  Apparently they close the doors to Soldier Field if you don’t get there in time.  With my luck I’d be standing on the outside of the stadium banging on the doors trying to get in–like something out of Monty Python.  So, K and I decided that we’d do this.  We’ll NOT use timing chips and start our own 10 miler early.  Certainly we don’t want the competitive racers thinking that we are trying to cheat the system and get a much better time, but we have trained a long time to do this race.  I personally, could be just as happy drinking mimosas, but I guess I’ll follow my leader.  The crazy thing is that I’ll be waking up at 5:00 Sunday to do Bike the Drive.

Tut tut, it looks like rain

We had a seven mile run to do this weekend.  I had weekend commitments that made a run on Saturday or Sunday virtually impossible, or at lease uncomfortable.  Since running alone is uncomfortable, I simply didn’t want to do it.  We decided to do an early 5:30 a.m. run.  Well, at 3:30 the rain was pouring down and the lightning was flashing.  The text I got from K, was essentially, I can run in the rain, but not in the lightning.  So, we bailed.  As I sat at work I worried about whether or not I was going to be able to do this run this weekend or not.  So, I decided to take a couple of hours off, mid afternoon to push through the run.  I started in the loop and headed down to the aquarium, to Northerly Island and back.  Even though it rained, I managed to get some shots from the phone.  I was happy to be back to the office and even happier that I was able to have as much wine as I wanted this weekend.

Finding the mojo

This week I have really tried to get back in the groove.  I am so worried about this 10 mile run coming up.  My breathing is still not where I need it to be and my legs, body and head just hasn’t been completely in it.  Despite my lack of desire, I did a pretty good job this week.  I did a short run on Wednesday, about a 5K.  The shots from the car early in the morning will tell all in terms of just how gorgeous it was. So after the 5 k on Wednesday there was early morning swimming with K.  She and I hadn’t been in the pool for ages.  How nice it was to see some of our old friends and fellow athletes.  It is amazing how quickly the strength and skill leaves when you aren’t practicing swimming.  I have a lot of work to do since I’ll be doing this CES triathlon training.

Tip and Paddle

My last post triggered a trip down memory lane to earlier athletic endeavors.  The summer before my sophomore year of high school I talked my girlfriend N into signing up for a boundary water canoe trip through our church camp outside of Ely, Minnesota.  The humor in this is that no matter what N and I did together while growing up, we ALWAYS got into trouble.   My mother adored her, but would cringe at the thought of us together because we lost all sense of sound decision-making.  Memories of this have faded over the years, but here are a few: 

  • I believe we canoed over 70 miles that trip.  
  • We drank, swam and bathed from the same water. 
  • N and I often went together to the pine box so that we could sneak cigarettes. 
  • All of the food was dehydrated and it tasted like it was dehydrated. 
  • A camper brought a bottle of Freon (good GOD what was he thinking…there goes the ozone) so that we could have ice in our drinks a couple of times during the trip. 
  • We took communion with pita bread and grape Kool Aid. 
  • We had to carry these gargantuan backpacks stuffed with all of our crap, they had to fit in the canoes. 
  • The one time N and I set up our own tent, it rained that night and we woke up in a puddle, (cigarettes drenched)
  • Not one fellow camper wanted to get in the canoe with me, cause, I tended to tip it over.  (cigarettes drenched)
  • On an especially windy day, I remember shouting to the world while slapping the lake with my paddle “Lake Agnes is a Bitch”  The fellow Christain campers and counselors chuckled despite the profanity!   Here is a topo map of the dear Lake Agnes in case you ever want to experience her windy wavy freezing hell. 

Here is a topographic map of the area that includes Lake Agnes.

I recently looked at the Indiana United Methodist Church camps, looks like you can still register to go back up to the area.

Raleigh-Durham-Craving a new playlist

Interesting how fate works.  I felt so bad yesterday because I didn’t wake up and go for my 40 minute run.   I had an afternoon flight down to Raleigh for a work conference.  Once I  checked into my hotel, I couldn’t have been happier that I waited till the evening to sweat.  The hotel has a lovely pond and walking path around it. I managed to go a little over 40 minutes with the second 1/2 faster than the first. Though folks, I am craving some new tunes on the playlist.  Can you help me out with some music recommendations.  Even one or two new songs will help.  Anyway,  I wasn’t so dedicated to actually wake up and visit the local Y this morning, but I did do some stationary biking and wine drinking…not at the same time.

Check out the photos from yesterday.

Things you shouldn’t do on April 2nd

I couldn’t stand the idea of the 6 mile run hanging over my head all weekend.  Despite the fact that there was 3/4 of a bottle of wine missing from the night before, I woke up this morning and decided to get the 6 miles behind me.  There were….errors along the way.  Here they are not in any order of importance:

  1. Don’t be an idiot and drink anything but water the night before a long run.
  2. Dont wear running sweatpants the hottest day of the year.   There is a fire warning out there for goodness sake.
  3. Don’t eat two pancakes and drink a cup of coffee before you run.
  4. Don’t stay up till 3 am the night before.
  5. Don’t forget your inhaler.
  6. Don’t forget sunscreen, cause by 9:00 your skin will be burnin’.

I did finish, my slowest run yet, but I missed K and P horribly.  Even though I have a policy to not talk during my runs, their company is welcome and was missed. 

Now on to an afternoon of hiking at Spring Mill.  There are friends who are clamoring for some mill ground corn meal. 

Beautiful southern Indiana.   Yay.

Leonard Springs, Photo by Bob Ostermeier

 Can’t wait to hit Upland Brewery later!!