athletic events

Call me April Fool

Recap of yesterday’s torture.  1 mile warm up.  My favorite part was when the walker passed K and I as we “ran”.  What twisted world is this?  Then “run” as fast as you can for a 1/2 mile.  Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.   Killing me softly and this ain’t no april fools.  I did have an interesting conversation with K though.  Up till now she fully plans to do the Chicago Olympic this summer.  I just don’t feel like I am that interested in working that hard.  Call me lazy if you want, but please, I have a life outside of working out.  So, we may sign up for the sprint distance training instead.  I think we’d have a blast training together.   I wonder if this is going to be another training program that I sign up for the training and don’t actually do the event.  The other fun thing today was that I got a ocmment from a former Windy City Roller on my roller derby write up.  Half makes me consider doing this next winter during the coldest of the cold.  We’ll see.  I still have all those pads.

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Nine miles of Pain

I am here to tell you that nine miles is a long way.  The run started out like all of the others except that my ipod was doing this strange skipping thing which made me half insane.  The only thing I could think of during the whole run was how happy I was going to be to get back home and have a bloody, beer, coffee, and or mimosa.  Maybe one or two of each.  We started at our normal spot and headed up north on through the park and over to the lakefront path.  The morning wasn’t that bad really, a little windy with a bit of  a chill, but not too bad.  I think we were all a little nervous about how long it was going to take and how FAR it really is.  I kept my bus pass in my water bottle holder just in case.  You just never know when you are going to finally have enough.  We went at a 4:2 pace.  That worked very well for me in the youthful miles, but as they started to creep up, just after Cricket Hill past Montrose I about died  I was thrilled when K said we’d bring the pace back to a 3:2.  By mile 8.5 I was struggling.  I was doing anything to avoid running.  I took some shots of the cloudy morning just north of downtown.  I was nearly dead at this point, but, we made it.  After stretching we drank, ate and laughed our butts off for the rest of the day.  So fun. 

Strange how distance perception has changed since the beginning of this training, the 6 mile run scheduled for this coming Saturday is considered a short one…what am I thinking???

Sunny running

Training updates here.  Since the last training post, there has been some progress…last Saturday we were up to 7.5 sunny miles at the lake.  Beautiful and refreshing.  I don’t mean to sound like an ad for Sprite, but it was an amazing day.  I am not saying here that I wasn’t exhausted and sore at the end, but the day was fantastic.  My gma pal K totally irritated me with her ability to “join in”.  Yes folks, she just decided that morning to do the full run walk with us.  She completed the run with us and was in much better shape than I was.  How did she do that?  My point being this, just because you didn’t run yesterday, doesn’t mean you can’t run today.

Feeling groovy.

What?  I know, crazy title.  I try to keep up with catchy phrases and sometimes flop (see example above)  So, the training continues.  I can’t believe I am still in one piece.  The icy cold blasting 5 mile run of a couple of weeks ago seems like a century ago.  I really felt the cold and struggled again to breathe, but we made it in one piece and were able to bloody mary celebrate afterward which made the entire thing worth it.  Then on to the rest of the week…sunday off  (hangover).  Monday, run outside solo (so boring I thought I would die) but was met by neighbors at the end of the ride with chicken tortilla soup and a margarita.  So very nice.  Tuesday, swim (getting boring)  Wednesday, evening 5 K run that was heinous beyond all measure.  K totally went off on the “coaches” and I think we were both just short of bailing.  Luckily we got a bit of a pep talk from the trainer who had let us down earlier with all of his talk of “LEAVE NOTHING ON THE PATH DURING THIS 5K”.  “YOU SHOULD BE TIRED AFTER THIS!” I am thinking….duh, I am tired walking to the car, let alone running a 5 k with a bunch of crazies in February on the Chicago lakefront.

Anyhoo, we made it.  Thursday, swim (yawn).  Friday, Saturday off then a 6 miler on the lakefront Sunday.  Fabulous fun run.

The mid-week run is tomorrow morning.  I am hopeful this one is better than the last.  My body is taking a beating here.

Lakefront Hell, winter runs

Last week I saw an online post from fellow former athlete K. She mentioned she had signed up for the Chicago Endurance Sports Spring ½ marathon training. I couldn’t believe it. How could she possibly sign up for something without me. Where is the love? Where is the camaraderie? I immediately thought, “there is no flipping way I am signing up for that.” Three minutes later I was on the phone with K trying to figure out how much I needed to pay and when it was starting. So I go from a couch potato who hasn’t worked out in months one minute, to a person in training for a ½ marathon the next minute. K mentioned that the training would start on Saturday morning, with a 3 mile run on the lakefront. Reminder folks. It is February.

Showed up Saturday, the windiest day of the year to run on the lakefront. K informs me that the run is 4 miles, not 3. GREAT. The entire thing was pretty much a big flipping joke as I could barely walk into the wind let alone run. But who am I kidding, I really can’t run in the sun with no wind. This is a run/walk program. 3 minutes run to 2 minutes walk. I swear though, that pacer wasn’t checking her Timex enough because I KNOW she had us run for more than 3 minutes at a time. Felt lucky I didn’t slip and fall on my ass, but in the end I still felt like I had.

But wait, there is more to the training. From that Saturday hellish activity I ran again Monday and Wednesday and swam Tuesday and Thursday. My beluga moves in the pool would have impressed Phelps.

Saturday’s 5 mile run nearly killed me.  I seemed to struggle with too many layers, tightening lungs from the cold air, and tired legs all around.  Curious wonders and questions about why our noses run so much in the cold were topics of the day.  But, we did it.  On to another week.  Next Saturday is suppposed to be 6 miles.  Hmmm.  We’ll see.

Adventure Racing…interesting, fun or insane??

Been off triathlons this season. Wanted to come clean about that. I haven’t completely given up the sport, just taken a bit of a break…just ask the workout girls or the swim coach. What I have decided though, is that something has got to give. I have been hearing more and more about adventure racing. My girl Kitty has done some wild ones here in the big shoulders city. I have another girlfriend who is doing insane things in Michigan…like really crazy 15 hour races. What I want to know is, how do you ease into this sport, what are some good races to set entry goals on? I need to know what races you like, hate, and which ones I don’t have to kill myself to train for and finish. Ideas and suggestions are seriously welcome and wanted!!

Fat girl barely works out

I have been going to the gym consistently over the past few years.  I am an ex smoker who one day realized that when I quit, I filled the free time with drinks and food.  Luckily for me, I found the gym and in a round about way found a group of women that are so fun to be with, it was nearly impossible for me to miss going to the gym.  UNTIL NOW!!!!

Since September people, I have struggled to get my ass out of bed.  There was a time that even if I forgot to put on the alarm clock or it was on very sleepy white noise sounds, I would bolt out of bed 15 minutes before I needed to be at the gym.  Not only that, there was the night before ritual of putting everything out on the bed and in the gym bag that I needed the next day.  And as for bed time….9:30 the latest.  What has happened to me??  On thing I know for sure has happened.  I am addicted to the TELEVISION!!

Heroes

Dancing with the Stars

House

Fringe

Top Chef, Top Design, Project Runway, I call it all TOP ADDICTION

These are my liquor.

What is more pitiful is that I have a DVR, I actually record these programs and stay up late to watch them all.  What is my problem. 

This morning, the white noise didn’t wake me up till 5:00 a.m.  Class starts at 5 a.m.  I forced myself to still get out of bed and make it to the pool.  What was interesting is that none of my aforementioned girlfriends made it there either. 

Amazing to me since Wednesday night TV doesn’t have much…wait a minute…..holy camoley…gotta go hit the DVR, the new season of Top Chef started last night.

It IS a small world afterall!! URBAN ASSAULT ROCKS!

Urban Assault Ride Chicago. What a BLAST. I can hardly wait to see the photos they post on line. I can’t wait for next year. Those of you out there who didn’t do it missed a great time and a great party afterward. This was the height of fun. People were so friendly (besides the cop at the zoo) Thanks UAR for a great Chicago day. If I could do these types of events, why would I ever do triathlons again? Speaking of triathlons. This guy comes up to me at the post race event. He looks familiar, vaguely, and he says, “didn’t I sell you a wetsuit?” Holy crap, it is none other than Troy from Mission Bay Multisport.   I start laughing my ass off just thinking of the day that Kitty and I went in there to try on our wetsuits.  So, here I am talking to the guy who put me through that torture.  We chatted it up a few minutes.  I recounted my superfast speed at Accenture (NOT!)  But I also let him know how fun it was.  Then, just to make sure he had heard my rant about equal size clothing when I had been in the store, I asked if he had been getting any other clothes in for the big gal.  He said he was in the process of investigating it and had ordered some skorts.  I told him about Run Chicago and how well they did with their clothes.  I think he was a little jealous.   Anyhooo, just needed to continue my fatactivitsm!!  Again, plus size clothing people out there, get your stuff in the stores.  We’ll buy it, we want to try things on.  We want to give you money for goods.  So, Mission Bay Multisport.  How about getting something in MULTISIZES????????????

Check us OUT!!!

Clarification to Port-o-Potty Reference

En route to the lake for a morning swim today, my girls commented about how they couldn’t believe I put on my wetsuit in the port-o- potty.  I apologize for not being clearer.  In no way did I change in the poop chamber.  I  stood on a grassy knoll in front of thousands of people and wiggled and stretched my way into the wetsuit I lovingly call Michelin. 

p.s. we found no parking at the lake so in dedicated athlete fashion, we went to breakfast instead.

Slow ass tri girl finishes triathlon at a snail’s pace

So, did I tell you that Accenture was this weekend?  Yeah, big race, the golden one for many a triathlete. For me this was supposed to be the year for the Olympic distance, or the “Oly” as some would call it. I, on the other hand, just couldn’t muster the strength, dedication, interest or stamina to really drive it all home. So, I decided to go ahead and do the sprint instead. I can’t tell you how liberating this was. Perhaps a little too liberating, because my fitness level the day of the event left a tad to be desired. However, I was determined to have a great time.

Woke up at the same before the crack of the crack of the butt of dawn and loaded up the ford blue van with 3 of my closest friends. We convoyed downtown to meet the packs and droves of insane people on bikes carrying large backpacks and wearing alien helmets. Transition was fun. I was next to this lady named Sandy who I swear, had more makeup on than I have seen on most models. I even mentioned I trained in less time than it took her to apply her mascara. Regardless, friends were made, laughs had. I had dilemma though. My start time was about 7:15 a.m. and I had to put on the wetsuit. See my previous explanations and adventures of trying on the wetsuit to understand why I may not want to do this in public let alone in a port-o-potty. At around 6:30 though, I had no choice. I put it on and immediately began to dehydrate because of the vast pools of sweat dripping from my face.

Swim start….I am chatting away to anyone who will listen so that I am taken aback when the actual horn goes off. I had no idea it would be that fast. I begin to try to develop some sort of rhythm to no avail because I am being kicked, pulled, yanked and otherwise beaten in the water. I also believe I ran over someone doing backstroke (sorry). Finally though, I am out of the water which is great for me. I search for my shoes which are under the crunch sign and see my girlfriend Kitty who I begin to have a conversation with…right there. We chat for a couple of minutes before I remember that this is a RACE. I proceed to hobble to the bike transition.

No amount of strength or flexibility will get me out of the wetsuit. I am like a turtle on my back, feet raised trying to get the sucker off of my ankles. Finally people stop to ask if I need help. I must have looked like I needed some medical attention. But, I prevail and walk (can I say that again WALK to the bike exit) I take my time getting on the bike and take off. The bike itself was uneventful. I couldn’t really get any speed worth mentioning, but there were some nice looking bikes along the way. Once off the bike I walk….yes, walk to the rack and change shoes, take off helmet, put on hat, do my hair (wait, I have none) Finally, I am off again. I get out on the run course and realize I still have my bike gloves on. Silly me, so I have to carry them with me.

I hated the run, every bit of it. I walked a lot of it and just smiled when I remembered I wasn’t doing the “Oly”!! Toward the end of the race I see a woman in front of me, she is struggling to get through this, but is giving it her all. I follow her for quite some time until we are within a 1/4 mile of the finish line. At that point I see her start to walk. I shout “Don’t you dare start walking now woman…I have followed you this far, you had better pick it up!!” So she starts running again. We sort of laugh together, the crowd starts to cheer us on because I am cheering her on Man oh Man what a RUSH!! We cross the finish line arm in arm in the actual victory pose. Hip Hip Hooray!!!!! All of the sudden a voice comes over the loudspeaker “Ladies, you have not crossed the finish line yet!!!!” We burst out laughing finish the race with a hop and smile.

She told me I made her race, that she wouldn’t have been able to do it without me. Now, I know that isn’t true, but it really was a nice thing to hear.

I had my slowest times ever in this race. I am not going to deny that in the negative area of my brain, that horrible place, I can feel bad about it. But mostly, I had a great time. I laughed and cried when two of my closest friends crossed the “Oly” finish line. I am so proud of them.

And you know what, even if I was the slowest of the slow….I am proud of me too!!

Great Job Terry from Naperville….whoever you are. 

p.s.  If you’d like to see a 30 second video of this finish….let me know….it is priceless.

 UPDATE TO ORIGINAL POST

En route to the lake for a morning swim today, my girls commented about how they couldn’t believe I put on my wetsuit in the port-o- potty.  I apologize for not being clearer.  In no way did I change in the poop chamber.  I  stood on a grassy knoll in front of thousands of people and wiggled and stretched my way into the wetsuit I lovingly call Michelin. 

p.s. we found no parking at the lake so in dedicated athlete fashion, we went to breakfast instead.