Kind of random, but very much all related, so in essence, not random at all.
1. Last year, I did my first Ironman. I loved it & I was sad because I didn't want it to end. I knew it was the right thing to sign up for another one.
2. Then, I ran the Victoria Marathon. My soon to be coach #2 would tell me this would be good training to see how I would handle going from IMC next year to Kona in 6 weeks. I sort of laughed & was scared simultaneously. I may or may not have raced with a fractured patella. Needless to say I don't jump fences anymore.
3. After finishing up work for the year, it was nice to get away & take a break from everything. Believe it or not it wasn't easy to go from the routine of working full-time to not working. In the interim, I took up XC skiing, which I loved, but was always a little chicken to try because I thought I'd look stupid, fall over, and make a fool of myself. Well, I did it anyways, and yes, I fell over. This year I'll complete the 2nd half of my XC skiing - learning to skate ski! Sometimes looking like a fool pays off. Like when I did 800m of backstroke in my 2nd triathlon (haha, not even my FIRST). In my first I was 3rd to last out of the water.
4. I train a lot on my own. Mostly by choice. I like being a bit of a hermit. I have the benefit of running with a group, but I really love to do a lot of stuff on my own. It gives you the time, especially when you're training for Ironman, to sort out your stuff, and build the strength to push hard on your own when you're alone. In the end, you're always on your own in the race. No distractions. You figure yourself out. Or you try to, anyway. Peter Reid says it's ok.
5. Sunshine Coast Fool's Half Marathon. In the midst of some tough marathon training, I jumped into this race and felt the pain of the difference between tapering and not tapering. I managed to be patient though, and trust my instincts, and I was able to finish strong and in 3rd place. The actual result wasn't as important as the process. Sometimes results mean very little in comparison to the work it took to get there.
6. I broke 3 hours in the marathon. 2:54, in fact, in Eugene, Oregon. If you asked me a year ago what the ultimate accomplishment for me could possibly be, I would have said breaking 3 hours. Then I just up and did it. And then I was left in a bit of a black hole, to be honest. What do you do when you got exactly what you wanted? Now where does your drive come from?
7. Luckily, my drive came back as I really wanted to take a shot at qualifying for the ITU Long Course Triathlon Age Group World Championship next year in Spain. So, 4 weeks after the marathon (of which I've never felt such stabbing pains in my legs in any sporting event EVER) I jumped into a 1/2 Ironman at Shawnigan Lake. I finished 5th overall. All of a sudden, the triathlon game changed for me.
8. This is how we roll. Or, this is how anyone who doesn't make a salary rolls. We live in our westy van. You get really good parking pre-race. You may or may not have people do donuts around your car in the middle of the night. We're not quite as high rolling as the Wurtele's with a RV (and we cheat by occasionally living in our house), but we can cook soup inside. That's pretty ace.
9. My friend Carl sent me this photo prior to our race-off a the Subaru Vancouver 1/2 Ironman in July. The race off also included my friend Jorg, but it was really this photo that laid down the law. The game was on. What you need to appreciate in this photo are the legs. And the fact Carl looks much fresher than me. What you also need to know, is that Carl told me that I have big legs, so really, I should be a good cyclist. So guys, go tell some girls they have big legs and see how that works out for you.
10. I watched my friends do their first triathlon. Including Andrea, who already did an Ironman but did her first triathlon as a new mom. It was so fun to answer some questions before the race (I asked the same ones!), feel the nerves the night before and the day of the race, and watch all the action the day of the race. Everyone had a great race, and everyone worked so hard, whether it was conquering their fear of swimming, biking or running. Like the grinch, my heart grew 2 sizes that day. Incidently, my swim coach pictured here, also did his first triathlon. And won it. I think I picked the right coach :)
10. Midway through summer I gave a road race a shot. Woah. Not only was I not well for this race, nor was I conditioned to do it. It opened my eyes to the race times I had achieved in the spring, and it made me realize those times were fast and I had worked hard for them. They didn't come out of thin air. At times I think we are guilty of constantly looking forward and not appreciating where we've been. I had a better appreciation after this race. And, I started to realize I could really start making an awesome photo of UGLY race photos. And I would be proud of it. And it would make my dad laugh. He thinks it's great when I look ridiculous in photos.
11. Ironman Canada. That went pretty well.
12. And now it's onto the next one. More to come on this one.
So that's a random recap of it all.
I'm hoping to keep somewhat of a daily, albeit short, snapshot of each of my days in Hawaii. Mind you, when vacation comes on Oct 9th, I'll be at the beach. Feel free to find me there :)
In a world without picture albums on your coffee tables, take the time to look through your photos every once in a while - it can do you a world of good.
Enjoy the crispness fall brings. I'm getting the heck out & going to a hot place. Yahoo!