Saturday, August 27, 2011

Biking with the Mikes

Greetings peeps!!  So, yesterday (8/26) was my century ride, as many of you know if you follow my obnoxious posting on Facebook (Yes, I AM a FB whore!). I had this planned, and was lucky to talk Mike Rosenberg into joining me, for what would be his first century ride! The promise of "time in the saddle" versus a hammerfest (me? Hammerfest?? Never!) I think was what made Mike more confident tackling this. I've ridden with Mike over the past few years, and I've got to say, he's really becoming what I'd say is a "strong cyclist"!  He rides up every single hill ... while I dismount and walk (of shame!). 

I've done this route in the past and am familiar with 3/4 of the area. The region from 6 o'clock to 3 o'clock is my unfamiliar territory. Couple that with exhaustion and fatigue and I'm usually a whiney, sobbing mess by the time I arrive there. I had decided to reverse the course, tackling the unfamiliar part first, when I felt stronger. But when Mike Mayer wanted to join, I was happy to go back to doing the loop counterclockwise so we could connect in Lakewood.

Mike R. and I met at North Chagrin, although we parked .75 miles away from each other. We connected and head north at 9:15 am. It wasn't too long before I was in familiar territory and heading west on Lakeshore, into downtown. I'll say it again: N. Marginal Road BLOWS!!! Maybe next time I'll try S. Marginal road. Anyone know if it's any better??  Ugh, headache from the rough road set in. Anyway, we got to the Browns stadium in 1:15, not bad given the traffic and lights. I was feeling AMAZING and, as always, thinking to myself: why don't I do this more often? I really enjoy it! (pretty much up to 60 miles, at which point I quickly deteriorate into a wuss!)

At the stadium we texted Mike M. and we weren't too far away, so another 10 min heading west, and we were all together. A leisurely pace to Edgewater to use the bathroom, then head out to Sweetwater and hit the Metropark Parkway. By this time, I was more "ebb" than "flow" and we all kind of spread out a bit, collecting at various points.  The first of the "darkness" set in around Strongsville. We had planned to stop at Seneca Golf Course, where Mike Mayer would turn around and ride back to Sweetwater, and Mike R. and I would continue on with the loop.

I had totally "forgotten"-  or had selective amnesia - the climbs through that area.  OMG was that hard!! I dismounted for one long climb and walked, the walk of shame. Some leg cramping was starting. :(  I was in a pretty bad place physically and emotionally. Oh, and I should mention that on my way out to start the ride, my insulin pump became "occluded" - first time ever, OF COURSE!! Was this a sign of things to come?  I literally cycled the whole day -10.5 hrs - without insulin or a CGM. I had a glucometer with me, but I opted to bury my head in the sand and "just ride". I was taking in gels and Amino Vital, so I was likely running "high", and not low, but we'll never know.  So, back to the darkest hours: the 10 miles before Seneca Golf Course.  I got dropped - no surprise. They knew where we were going, I knew where we were going, so it wasn't an issue for me at all.  The Mikes are stronger cyclists, and as I've said, I'm okay with that!! After the worst of the climbs, after Bennet Rd, and before Ridge Rd., I had the single, most painful experience of my life!!!.  My quads started to seize. BOTH of them!  And not mere "cramping" but ROCK HARD, spastic seizure. Enough to pull my left knee cap off track. I got off the bike as soon as it started. I was in the middle of the car lane, there was NO BERM. I leaned on my bike and screamed with the most guttural scream ever - the kind you hear women doing while giving birth.  I've had 3 kids, and passed 6 or so kidney stones ... this was worse.  I could not lay down the bike, it was all that was holding me up. I was FROZEN.  This lasted for a good 60 seconds, which felt like 5 min. I actually prayed for a car to come and hit me!!  Or maybe just HELP me.  My group was long gone, and I was totally, utterly "stuck".  I heard a car approaching ... I looked back: It was a park ranger!!! THANK YOU DEAR GOD!!!  He parks and starts calling into dispatch and I'm screaming "can you come take the bike??"  (Along with some other choice words, which clearly were not meant for him!). He came up and I just said "please, just take the bike". He did. I reached down, flipped my kneecap back on the groove and collapsed with my legs folding under me. Sweet relief, instantly. Did that just really happen, or was it a nightmare???   Within a minute I was able to get up and take the bike back. I thanked him profusely, and assured him I had a phone, money (for a cab he said! Ha!) and some peeps ahead. He let me go on, and I walked for about 1/4 mile, and ultimately, climbed back on my bike. I got into granny gear and spun as fast as I could. My thought process was to flush out the lactate and spin out the cramping in a low gear. I took water, salt tabs and finally, at the top of the next hill, collected with the Mikes. My first words: "you will not believe what just happened to me!!"    Ugh.  Onward....

Finally we arrived at Seneca golf course and we went in, and snarfed down tons of calories and fluids. My order? A coke, a poweraid and a water.  I WANTED a muffin, but I could just visualize it sitting in my gut, and ultimately being thrown up!! So I passed on the muffin.  We took our time, chatted,  and started to feel better. It was probably a full hour before we got back on the road, Mike M. heading back to Lakewood, and us continuing the Emerald Necklace loop.

We came to our first closed road, which meant getting out the iphone and re-routing. I had some idea of where we were, but we needed to get back on track. It wasn't too long before we found Chaffee Rd. and were back to the route.  Finally, entering Bedford reservation, we stopped to use the bathroom and check in with our respective peeps. It was 4:30pm and we were supposed to be done, but, we literally had 30 miles to go :(   The iphone helped a lot along the way and we - or rather "I" - ebbed and flowed with energy again. Mike was holding strong, and had already determined he was going to run afterward!! Me? NO. WAY.  We caught some good rollers - I love those!!  But then there were some great descents, that were so, so fun!  As we stopped to check the route, I was commenting on how fun that descent was. Mike says "you know what that means, don't you?"  Ha! Yes. I. do.  More climbing!!!  So, we get down to Chagrin River Road - I'm finally starting to get excited b/c we are almost home! Until ... THE DETOUR.  Yes, Old Mill was out at the bridge, heading east, and there was no way to get out of the valley without climbing the long, steep Old Mill up.  Mike was off! I just tried talking to myself, to remain calm, and try to get as far up as I could.  I think made 1/4 of a mile, tops. The rest was a long, lonely, dark haul up the road. Mike was at the top sitting down.  He later said he wanted to descend it, and ride it a second time, but was afraid I'd be mad! No way!!! - if you are feeling the energy to repeat that, HAVE AT IT!!  I know my physical weaknesses and I'm okay with them! Next time he wants to do that, he's got my full blessing. I would not in any way feel like he's showing me up! First off, he's a humble guy. Secondly, I'm really at peace with my lack of cycling strength, and especially climbs! He's significantly younger, and stronger than me - and getting stronger with each ride!  I'm fine with doing whatever you need to do to make your ride fulfilling for you! I'm just happy to have some company!

At the top, we were ALMOST there. Mileage: 94 miles.  We got to Mayfield Rd., and while Mike wanted to avoid traffic, I just wanted to be DONE.  It's after 7pm by this time!!!  So Mike conceded, and we went Mayfield Rd. to SOM Center Rd., and back to North Chagrin. Ending mileage at my car: 99.94 ... no way was I ending on that number! Little bit more to flip the odometer, and we ended up with 100.11. And I was DONE!!

Home, shower, coma while watching the Tribe play, ejecting in the 8th inning for bed. I slept like a rock and, surprisingly, woke up to very little soreness at all! How is that possible???

Glad to have it done. Off to do a run today.  Had to bail on John Mack and riding 60 miles today ... way too ambitious for me! Plus, me and Felicity need time away from each other. And she needs a bath!!

I'm struggling. Rev3 ... do the full? Drop to the half? Defer to next year.  I think today is the last day I can change it. We'll see how the run goes. I'm not near where I was last year :( I need another 6 weeks!! But, it is what it is, and I'll just need to decide and go with it. I suppose the answer will be clear for me here soon. I hope so!

Peace out!

Friday, August 19, 2011

It was SUPPOSED to be a 75 mile ride ...

I was ready for that! I was excited and my friend, Michael Rosenburg had asked me if I was interested in riding together on Saturday. I had planned to join Janet Edwards, et al, so I tossed that out as an option. Mike was in (Mike's always in!). We agreed to hang together because, in theory, we are compatible in our bike fitness (not! Mike's doing better than I am, and I'm real happy to see his improvement!).

Five CTCers met at Lifetime Fitness (LTF) at 7 am to push off. Janet had sent the route to me and I had a few cue sheets. The benefit of riding with a group, when you are not a strong cyclist, is that you just get to get into the pack and follow. I'm not talking about "pulling", I'm talking about not needing to navigate!!

We got to a point where Janet, in her infinite wisdom, said if we separate, you guys are good, right?? Yes! And then the three .. were gone! Eh, no problem with that, I knew they needed to get in their workouts too, and they are all much stronger cyclists.

Shortly after they pulled away, we missed a turn. Mike caught it "relatively early" and we backtracked. I think that put us about 3.5 miles off the cue sheet corresponding mileage, but we could work with that. We'd get the next TWO turns in our head, after we did one, then we'd regroup and get the next two. I found myself chanting something to the effect: "Right on Lewis then left on Magill (make those up because I'm too lazy to look up the route). That worked for me and we settled in.

At some point I was looking for a bathroom, but not to critical mass quite yet. We found a diner and traded off babysitting the bikes while the other went in. No one gave us grief, thankfully. Onward. Next up, Hiram College.   Apparently it was the first weekend of school, as there were tons of students moving in.  We were getting hungry by this time, and eager for a place to eat. Shortly after we turned onto 82, we saw a little "gift shop" with food, and more importantly, ICE CREAM!  I went in and got chocolate milk, donut gems (crumb cake!) and an ice cream sandwich. DE-LISH!  I can't even tell you what Mike got, beyond strawberry milk.  We sat on the porch and snarfed our calories! I checked in to FB and saw a message from Janet. She had come across some road work that resulted in a detour. It was perfect timing to get this, and greatly appreciated.  Borrowed a pen and updated the cue sheet.  Oh, and when Janet says "Music St. is a bitch" ... them there are some SCARY words??  What? Why? Hilly? Bad roads? Busy?  We were anxious!

Leaving the store with a bloated belly and rapidly rising BG, I soon regretted my gluttony as we climbed a GINORMOUS hill on 82 out of Hiram. I saw it ahead and thought it must be just an illusion, it can't be that bad.  It was. I came close to tossing my cookies ... er, um, donuts.  I dismounted and walked. Mike surged ahead and zipped up! How the hell??  Jealous!  He waited for me at the top ... I was hoping that was the worst of it! But what's the deal with MUSIC St???

Forging ahead our energy seemed to ebb and flow, wax and wane. Fortunately we weren't ebbing and flowing in sync, so overall, his flow, helped my ebb, and vice versa. Literally, on flats, I'd go from 22 mph and feeling amazing, to 8-10 mph and feel like I was pushing an elephant!!  I got really good with my gearing!! I'm improving there, a lot!! I think back to 2009 when I did all cycling in ONE GEAR ... oy vey!

Mike noticed a noise from my bike. I guess I thought it was just normal. It was present in all gears. Oh well, can't worry about it now. I'll get it looked at later this week. That, luckily, never became an issue.

Finally, MUSIC St.   At first it felt a lot like Thompson Rd. on the Rev3 course. That's my FAVORITE part of the course - rollers! But Music's road was cobble-like and rough. I was hopeful that that was the issue Janet was referring to (but in my head, knew NO WAY!). After the rollers: climbs. There it was.  Not as bad as Rt. 82, but still, pretty good exertions at this late part of a ride.  I dismounted and walked. I can own it. Not Mike!  He even said "you're like 100 ft from the top??!!"  Yep, I know, and I'm DONE!! Dismount! :)

We finally got past 60 miles. Mike was in virgin territory with new mileage. He seemed to be doing great. Just some "sore butt" ... but of course!

Next familiar area was Chagrin Falls. I recognize it, but I needed the cue sheet. And it was pretty technical with lots of quick turns, so we had to have sheet in hand to get through like 10 turns. And, I'm now running out of water. It's warm. Not much left. and I'm cramping in my legs and I get a headache. I'm about ready to be done.  As we rode through Gates Mills, I was desperate for a business so we could get fluids. There are NONE.  I cursed the city of Gates Mills, as I have in the past. It seems like I'm always at critical mass in Gates Mills, and there's NO HELP!!  I was getting very, very crabby - bitchy - let's just call it what it was!! I was close to stopping at a residence and asking for tap water!!  Ugh.  Foul language and evil starts to come out of me as I am getting more and more desperate. The headache was the straw - I knew I was dehydrated then, and needed fluids.

We got to Rt. 87. I know Rt. 87. The cue sheet has us turning RIGHT (East) onto 87, but I know that LTF is LEFT (West) ... and simply stated, I could NOT turn away from the finish, mentally. I needed to be DONE!!!!  I pleaded my case with Mike. Please, let's go left!!! I know it's a ways to go, but we'll be on ONE last road and no more turns, cue sheet, or waiting for "what's next"!!  He agreed and I was so grateful. I pulled up my GPS and recognized the area, knowing there would be a HUGE BP store where I could get water. I just needed to be there. NOW!

We headed west onto Rt. 87 and FINALLY came up to the store. I was one crabby bitch by now, and shaking and physically and mentally a wreck. I ran in and got a big gatorade and a water. I came out and downed the Gatorade in one fell swoop. Topped it off with half of the water and poured the other half into my bottle. I felt like a new woman within 5 minutes!!! Mike didn't say much, but rattled of something about Gates Mills not wanting businesses in their community ... but I heard "fuck Gates Mills!" Ha!  He didn't say that, but that's what I heard. Chalk it up to delusion. 

Mike finally recognized where we were and says he knows a quicker way home, less traffic. I asked "are you SURE, because I am running on empty here ..." He did.  He took us through a development and out we came on to Bainbridge, where I could SEE LTF off in the distance!!!  Thank GOD!!!  Cue the surge of adrenalin as I found myself energized and zipping along to finish the ride.  All said an done, Garmin and bike computer both said 84.79 mile ... which is absolutely 85 miles in my book!  Mike felt good - at one point he wanted to do the whole 90 mile route! He wanted to keep going ... and he was welcome too, just not with me! I was jonesing for a nap and food. The drive home would be difficult, as it was.

Mike asked me, how do you do Ironman if this is what happens to you??  Good question!! And my answer: It's all mental! Had I had 85 miles in my head, I probably wouldn't have melted down the way I did at 75 miles. But my head had 75 miles and when we hit it, and weren't done, or even, close to done, that's when I lose it!  In IM I HAVE 140.6 miles in my head.  God help me if I go off course and add another mile ... that could be the end of me!

All said and done, it was a great day! I forgot how much I love riding!! And I do! The weather was great, the smells were great. I felt great - for most of it.  It was all manageable to me until we hit 75 mile! :)

Next up: 105 mile ride in 1 week.  Excuse me 105.42 miles.  In other words, a long day. I'll be better prepared. Got a new CamelBak. I'll actually be wearing it on race day. Don't give me grief about that - I'm not near good enough cyclist for that to be a factor!! The ability to have nutrition, hydration and diabetes supplies with me will be nothing but good for me. I can't quite swing the carbon rear-mount hydration system I want right now, so this was an affordable compromise.  It arrive yesterday, and you can check it out HERE. It'll match my kit, my bike and I will fill it with ICE. My bike only has 2 places to put fluids, and I need Amino Vital as my sugar source, so this will solve the water problem for the century ride and on race day.

I'm exhausted from typing this (or maybe from my 14 hr work day yesterday!) and I need some food and a shower. I'm sorry I'll miss the second Rev3 preview day ... you don't know how badly I want to come :(   But, I have kids, and I really can't ask them to hold tight while I drive and ride for 6 hrs.  Have fun out there, and I'll be seeing you in 3 short weeks on race day!!


Junk miles or exercise in mental abuse?


WTH!! Today I had to squeeze in my run early due to child-care commitments. I felt pretty good as I set off to do my seven mile staple run, although I had wanted to do my 12 mile loop. 

First mistake: shoes. I swear I have an "unlucky" pair of shoes!! I have these racing flats that I feel great in, and have lots of great runs, and PRs, when I wear them. Then there's this other pair ... They are all K-Swiss. The racing flats are UG-LY. U.G.L.Y!!! And I happen to have 2 pairs, as I left them in St. George, but was lucky to have the race director sent them to me!! But I'd replaced them (at a steal, >50% off!). Now ugly shoes = good run, almost always. But the attractive red and white Blade Light shoes ... I run terrible in them, almost always. I'm not in pain, I don't have a different feel, they just seem to be highly associated with crappy runs. I need to stop running in them.

Second mistake: no breakfast. Energy was low and at the end, hypoglycemia set in. Grrrr.

So I set off and I decide I'm going to make this and easy pace out, then negative split back. I wasn't looking for lactate threshold or anything, just a nice few miles. By mile one I was struggling with a 9:44 min mile. It felt faster, and more effort than that pace, for sure. UGH! As I hit my second mile the pace was better, just not "good". And I felt tired. I had good music, and that usually picks me up, but not today. So, I just figure, not every run can be AMAZING, right? This sure wasn't.

When I hit 3 miles I decide to eject and do 6 rather than 7. At this point, I'm trying to maintain some dignity. But no, it deteriorates from there. I walked. A lot.  I just feel really tired.  My Thursdays are a LONG, LONG ass day. I don't hate it or anything, I just think it takes it's toll. I didn't get to sleep until after 1 am. Got up at 7am. That's not enough sleep for me :(

During the crappy run, I'm mentally debating if these are junk miles or if I can pull anything from them. I pretended that this was my mental state for the last 6 miles of my 140.6 mile triathlon ... THAT I'M DOING IN 3 WEEKS!!!  So, pushed a bit mentally, but still, no response from my body physically. This is probably good practice for those time, and believe me, there are many of those times - mental highs and lows - in one mere day, one race. It's multi-phasic, cyclic, and I have to really work on my attitude of gratitude on race day. Try not to "wish it away", try to stay in the moment. When I'm successful at that, I feel so amazing, regardless of my performance. It's a true state of euphoria and gratitude and pride! But when that's not happening, you get some really freakin' low LOWS ... I suck. I have no business doing this. Why didn't I train better, more, and more consistently. You can really beat the snot out of yourself!! And, trust me, I know how unproductive this is! I'd NEVER be that "unsupportive" of even my worst enemy (and lots of you know who that is!) ;-) ... so why would I "talk" to myself like that???  It's not by choice, and I work hard to avoid that unproductive thinking.

So, today I have lots to do, and chicklets, so I'm kind of trapped at home. I will work on my "to do" list today and, seriously, thinking I'll try again this evening. I really want to have a good run. Maybe I can still have that. I ran 6 miles today in 5 minutes slower than I typically run SEVEN miles. So ... maybe try again later, after fueling, after possibly a nap. And really, no pressure - if it's better, great, if not, more preparation for the mental abuse in an Iron distance triathlon??  We shall see.

Next blog post will be recapping my Saturday ride with CTC ... or at least that's how it started out ...


Friday, August 12, 2011

GCT, Stuff, and Plans

Greetings peeps!

Last weekend was pretty good! Two of my kids participated in the kids' triathlon at Headland's Beach in Mentor. My daughter Jaime had to miss it as she had swim team championships all weekend. BTW, I'm SO PROUD of her for starting her first year of swimming, sticking to it when it was hard, and improving exponentially!! She's just amazing and I hope she had as much fun with it as I did in watching and being her fan! So, just Samantha and Kevin participated in the triathlon this year.  The lake conditions were perfect and it was a great day! 

Kevin went off first. His swim was pretty good, and he came out about middle of the pack. His T1 was lickety split! His biking went well and then T2 also pretty darn quick.  He had been complaining about a sore left ankle for the previous few days. In my brilliance, I had him and Jaime accompany me on a run with them on their bikes - THE DAY BEFORE THE TRIATHLON.  Epic FAIL on my part. Why did I not see that maybe that was not the day to be doing 7 miles on a bike??  Just because it's how "I" roll, doesn't mean that's how they should roll! Boo.  He said the bike didn't bother his ankle, so there's that.  And I adjusted his bike to better fit his height. You'll be hard pressed to see a smidge of me in that boy - or Sam for that matter, as they are tall and lanky and lithe.   So, on Kevin's run, he did the run/walk to adjust for his sore ankle.  He finished strong and got 4th place. And yes, there were more than four 7 & 8 yr olds. (He's 7) - there were maybe 12.

Then Sam's turn.  Now she's been doing OWS with us recently and THAT week did about 2000 yds in the lake! She really fell into the groove and felt "like she could swim forever" once she got her breathing down. She's got a gorgeous stroke.  I'm still trying to talk her into swim team next year - the deal breaker is the early practice time :(  She came out in the first 1/3 of the pack. Her T1 was FAST and off she went for 6 loops. Now she had mentioned that her gears won't shift ... yes, mother of the year, I was all over that. NOT. Never once did I address that! I suck.   I did, however, PUMP HER TIRES ... doesn't that count?  So, round and round she goes ... in GRANNY GEAR! Ugh! At least she'd be loose off the bike!  Every time she came around, Ted, her grandparents and brother, and I would cheer, and she'd look away. I knew she was hurtin'!!  She says she just doesn't want to see us.  Okay, whatever ... But before I knew it, she was in T2 and out like lightning. I then realized, I hadn't seen any girls!!!  So, then I started getting really excited ... she's going to place!!  She went out slower than in the past, but she managed to maintain that slower pace, which was working for her.  No blowing up!  So as the boys started coming in to finish, no girls!! OMG!!  Then: A girl!  No age, and she LOOKED older than 12, but these days, you just don't know.  Next, I see Samantha!!  So, she's got 2nd place locked up ... almost.  There's a girl on her tail, gunning for her. I wanted her to know. I'd want to know. Sam is competitive, like me, so I knew she'd want to know someone was on her tail and reaching for her.  Ted didn't want me to emphasize her PLACE, which I get, but I just couldn't help myself from putting up 2 fingers showing she was in 2nd place. Then I ran over to the finish line and told her someone was on her tail and she had to DIG, DIG, DIG to hold that place the last 25 yards.  Yes, I was Jillian Michaels!  I only know that I'd want that done for ME!  And my BFF Katie responds to that too. Samantha knows me, and that I would be proud no matter what place she gets, but I didn't want her to look at me and say I didn't know she was 3 steps behind me!  She finished strong and I was SO PROUD!!! She had the look of pain - PROUD pain - and I know it well! I was happy to hug the sweaty mess that she was after that amazing race! 

Lo and behold, the girl that finished ahead of her? 14 yrs old! Samantha took FIRST PLACE in her AG!!  Boo yah! She proudly donned her 3 finisher medals (from previous years) and headed to Jaime's swim meet to show her dad, step mom, and sister, as well as a number of school friends, her proud accomplishment! 

Next year, I'm going to let Samantha use Esmeralda - my Cannondale road bike. She's ready. She's 5', I'm 5'2". I also bet she'll do more training next year. It's her choice, I never ride her about it, but she's getting a taste of competition and is liking it. Yeah, she's my daughter!  Next up for all 3 chicklets: Flag Football! It's really an awesome program! Can't beat half-hour FB games on Sat. mornings!!!

Sunday, I raced GCT.  The lake was ANGRY!  Mikey, the RD, made the wise decision to move ahead with the triathlon (vs. canceling and doing a duathlon) but allowed any swimmer to, once going around the start and finish buoys, to come in as shallow as they needed to move the 1500 m from start to finish.  Some tried swimming, but it really was brutal. I'm told that about half did the "walk of sham" (not my term - Mike M. coined it).  As long as the ankles were in the water, you could advance to the finish and circle the buoy. 

Now, I was SANS wetsuit!!  I was getting a lot of surprised looks, but I just felt I'd be fine without it. In hindsight, I'd put on the wetsuit. I felt good - this race was going to be a training day for me. No PR hopes, just a strong effort in all disciplines. So, I SWAM. THE. WHOLE. THING.!!   Here's how it went wrong: The waves were very large and we were swimming UPSTREAM. I stayed out PAST the buoys so I could miss the breaking waves. Still, the waves were too high for me to sight the next buoy.  So, I used the beach as my guide. Which wasn't all that brilliant of a move, because .... after swimming for what seemed to be an appropriately long time, I approached the "finish" where the crowd was. Came ALL THE WAY IN ... only to look for the chute ... and be told, "oh, honey, this is the SPRINT START, not the finish"!    O. M. G.   What a wasted effort!!!   I then swam back out past the buoy and headed further west. At one point, I was part way to Canada. A kayaker lifeguard came out and tapped me on the head with the paddle and said I was heading to Canada, I needed to redirect 180 degrees!  What a CF!!!!   By NOW I can see the finish buoy and I finally got the the end. Swim time 28 ugly minutes. BUT!!!  But, I swam the whole thing ... and then some! I. am. proud.   And NO HR elevation, no panic, just some logistical errors, everything else felt fabulous.

T1 - fast. Happy with it.  Off on Felicity and had a strong bike leg.  Yes, I dismounted wand walked 75 yrds of the steepest climb, however, I regained my position in the race and have ZERO shame about it :) That's my energy conservation strategy! Bike was respectable. No idea of my time. 

T2 - fast. Forgot my sunglasses :(  Otherwise, no issues. Off for the run.  Kept an even pace, and a little outside my comfort zone. Nothing impressive, unless you factor in how very little I've trained to date, THEN it becomes IMPRESSIVE!! :)  Walked a few spots, but it's SO motivating to have other CTC peeps and friends there to call you out encouragement (as well as busting you walking!) so I know I ran more than if you all weren't there!!  Said hi to Ed Slovenkay at his mile 5 and my mile 1 - he didn't recognize me! (No Tribetes kit!!! I'm sporting new CTC kit!)  He told me later he was hurting ... I didn't know that boy could hurt :)  (kidding!).   Ed got 1st in his AG and 2nd OA (or maybe first ... something awesome!)

By mile 5 I was ready to be done. I was doing my "last walk" as my goal was to run the entire way once I returned to the park. Teresa Stanek came by, strong and steady, and asked if I was okay (walking). I was, and she was inspiring me, so I started running before re-entering the park, and was hoping to work together with her to encourage a strong finish for us both. Teresa was my inspiration for mile 6.2!!   I kind of have only one pace: on or off. Once on, I think I was pushing Teresa outside her comfort zone, so I respected her desire to focus on her own strategy and not enforce my will on her. I remember how hard it was to tell Vic K. that I really didn't want him to run that last mile of IMFL with me, as it would stress me out and mess with my head, and how he totally respected that.  So, I just did my own thing. I felt energized, and I'm crediting Teresa for that! She definitely positively influenced a stronger finish for me! Thank you girlie!!!   I was rounding the bend and there were 2 guys there, I knocked off one (not literally!) and then had the other in my sights. He knew it, and sped up. Me too. Then we came to an all out SPRINT - balls to the wall kind of finish.  I ran through, he slowed up, but his "man-ness" allowed him to hold me off by a tenth of a second. That was FUN!!  Great job! I think he was ticked, but I said thanks for the push! And I meant that with kindness and respect!

I later learned I got 2nd in my AG! Woot! Totally unexpected. And, of course, inspiring to recommit to training, a constant struggle recently.   Well, less so now, as I'm really pumped about my base fitness - it's not as bad as I thought. I still have base to tap into!

Those of you that follow me on FB - The name change is for fun. I've always wanted that name. I like the sound of Dr. Devereaux! Eh, don't over-interpret it. Life is pretty good right now. I feel ... pretty good!  My family is healthy and happy ... or working on that. I am healthy and uninjured. I have started working at the Vet Tech program again and working with BFF, as well as other cool chicks, makes work fun, enjoyable and rewarding. I love doing surgery and I'm teaching Anesthesia this quarter, and enjoying it a lot. Getting to see KT twice weekly brings me joy!  Discovering the awesomeness that is voice text messaging has allowed me to safely communicate with Elizabeth while driving. Having amazing friends and a wonderful sister, family has allowed me to stay afloat during challenging times. I look around and see people I love and care about struggling with life, too, and I know that things WILL BE OKAY. I feel I'm in a good place and working toward a better place, so it's all very good and hopeful.

Lastly, I'm going to drop a bomb here ...

I am seriously considering signing up for IMSG for 2012. Yes.  It will be different this time. Some redemption. Something I CHOSE, not that was chosen for me. There will be some down time between REV3 and IMSG, should I choose to do it.  And, best of all, I BELIEVE I CAN DO IT!!!  So, don't be surprised if it happens.  HS friends Tom, Mike and if we can tear him away from his very important MIT lab, Jim are all considering IMSG. How can I NOT consider that reunion???  I'm weighing in stuff now and will decide by September 30th I believe.  I think I'll see how Rev3 goes, then, you know, there's the post-IM blues ... and it's very real! This could be the cure!!!

Okay, THIS is my parting thoughts: I am SO EXCITED to have many of my Triabetes friends join me in doing Rev3.  Initially we were all in for the full, but life has taken it's toll, and some have dropped to the half. Don't think I haven't considered it! But, I'm in, for the full, with miss Annie Bacon ... aka: the Baconator, and only girl of our team to finish IMSG! Annie will rock Rev3. My Triabetes peeps coming in for Rev3:
Annie Bacon - California
Jenny Crandall - Arizona
Andrea Huston - Hawaii
Vic Kinnunen - Georgia (Kona lotto winner 2011!)
Daniel Vincent - Washington

Brian, Christian, Sarah, and any other of my 'betes peeps, please join us, if you can, if only to Ironfan - which is a blast! I've got tons of CTC peeps here to show you just how it's done! :)

Having these people at Rev3, along with so many of my CTC peeps, will make September 11th an amazing day, no matter what the outcome!!! It's all good!!!