Play Ball!

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Published on: March 31, 2008

It’s that time again… major league baseball is back in town!  As a die-hard White Sox fan, I don”t think that this season holds anything more than mediocrity (hard to win your division when you’re playing against the likes of Detroit and Cleveland!), but I”m still giddy with the thought of my guys taking the field.

Except for this:  why is it that MLB insists on starting the season IN MARCH up NORTH??  Aren’t there plenty of cities that have great weather around this time?  Why play in Chicago or Cleveland when Florida, Arizona and California are sunny and warm.  Give us a fighting chance for a nice Opening Day — start the season in the south, and have our Opening Day be sometime in mid-April.  Sure, it could still be snowing, but at least we’re that much closer to seeing the sun shine!

GO SOX!!!

Spring?

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Published on: March 30, 2008

Haven’t we had enough?  Hasn’t Mother Nature thumbed her nose at us enough times this year?  Can’t we all just get along

It’s “officially” Spring.  Whodda thunk it?  This weekend is the Shamrock Shuffle — a race, ironically, never held on St. Patrick’s Day weekend — and the biggest hope isn’t for sun or warmth, but to not get pelted with sleet and icy rain.  At some point, I suppose you have to lower your expectations to have any chance of getting what you want

So, Spring.  NOW!  Please?

Nutritional Wobbleboard

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Published on: March 28, 2008

You know about how some people talk about being on the “nutritional bandwagon”?  Meaning, they’re watching their food, counting calories and actively trying to eat healthy?  Well, I’ve decided that if it really were a “bandwagon”, I’d have no troubles — bandwagons have four wheels, are stable, even have some shelter to make them hospitable.  I like to think of myself as on the “nutritional wobbleboard” — it’s precarious, takes a lot of effort and when it’s working, really engages the core

And I fall off.  All the time.  Sometimes I can readjust and get back on without too much damage.  Other times I fall off, apparently knock myself senseless and make some really bad decisions.  You know, like the gallon of ice cream (“better eat it to get it out of the house!”) or the million-calorie Culver’s shake (are you sensing a theme here?). 

But, in the end, you have to climb back on, recenter yourself and continue with the balancing act.  And the important part — you have to forgive yourself.  Know that there will be bumps and bruises along the way, but no permanent damage.  March forward, make a good decision NOW and let the bad decisions of the past fall away.

Two Times

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Published on: March 27, 2008

As the saying goes, there are two times to train — when you want to and when you don’t want to

There are plenty of times when training comes easy.  Blue skies beckoning you to roll along to feel the breeze, warm sun on your back in the outdoor pool, a hard tempo run to attack the pavement as well as attack stress.  On these days, the living is easy, so to speak.  You’re chomping at the bit to get out and move and sweat and training becomes this life-affirming act that nourishes your soul.

These, however, are not the times that define us as an athlete and competitor

No, the days that mold us are the ones when you sit on the edge of the pool thinking, “DAMN that water looks cold!” and you just can’t make yourself jump in.  Or when you sit on the couch, all dressed to run, and can’t seem to think of a legitimate reason why getting outside would be better than just napping in your favorite chair.

Now, I’m newly in the ranks of having a triathlon coach.  Someone to make all my decisions for me — I no longer have the power to skip workouts with no reasonable explanation.  Yesterday, I had a swim on tap.  And it was DEFINITELY one of those “don’t want to train” days.  Now, for those that know me, swimming is not my favorite discipline of the three — far from it, actually.  I sat on the cold tile for at least 10 minutes, trying to think up a good enough excuse for not swimming.  Finally, after determining that “tsunami moved in and the pool closed” wouldn’t be believable, I took the (very cold!) plunge.

As I started my workout, my brain was still concocting ways to end the swim early:  foot cramps, chemical imbalance in the pool, ripped bathing suit, projectile vomiting, swim cap too tight (I’m pretty creative when I don’t want to do something!).  The fact is, I mentally quit this workout at least a dozen times.  It was essentially a 6×300m workout, and within each set my brain would plot against me:  ”You can quit.  No one will know.”

That whisper in my head almost did me in… I almost caved and took the easy way out. 

It took finding a louder, stronger voice to do a little talking back:  ”Shut up.  Let me do just one more set and then maybe I’ll listen.”  But – it was always “one more set” and then — the workout was finished.

Was it a good swim?  Not particularly.  Did it make me a better triathlete?  You bet.  Those mental victories add up … and after overcoming again and again, pushing through the bullsh!t becomes second nature, the way of a competitor.  Sometimes it’s supposed to be difficult — if it wasn’t, everyone would do it — and those are the workouts that bring about the stronger, mentally-focused athlete that achieves great things.

Hiya.

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Published on: March 26, 2008

I’m Laura.  Friends call me “Laur”.  Or Laura.  (damn my parents not giving me a nickname-able name!)  I’m a triathlete.  Softball player.  Computer worker bee-nerd (and honestly, don’t want to be the boss).  Smart ass.  Lover of ice cream.  Frustrated Wii Dance Dance Revolution player.  And closet junkie of Dancing with the Stars (don”t tell!).

I’m hoping to impart a little humor, perhaps even a little insight from time to time.  This will be less a “man, I’m tired this morning, going running and grocery shopping later” and more of a venue for me to spew my thoughts and commentary on my life and everything around me.  Sure, a lot of my posts will deal with the swim, bike, run stuff that dominates my life, but there will be more than enough room for the funny family story (my Wii is being held hostage!) and thoughts on the wide world around me as well.

And now – perhaps I should get to work on some real content

Time to run!

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