New recruit

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Published on: January 14, 2011

One of my very favorite things to do is to bring someone new into my world of triathlons and running.  Sometimes they are reluctantly dragged into it, kicking and screaming, quite sure that they’re going to absolutely hate it.  Other times they have no idea what exactly they’re agreeing to but go into it willingly enough, until – of course – they figure out that, um, yea, this might not exactly be fun (let’s just say there was a long night of drinking after a softball game where I talked a friend into doing her first 5k the next morning… picking her up at 5am… hee).

I’ve mentioned before, I’m in the middle of picking up and moving.  And one of the things I’m most excited about is the opportunity I’m going to have to get myself a training partner!  I’ve always talked about how I dislike the solitary aspect of training, and how I’m much more a social-triathlete than a competitive one, so this is like a gift from the training heavens.

Yes – I’m taking in a roommate when I move.  But that’s not who I’m referring to.  By being closer to work, and closer to people who will be able to help out, as soon as I’m settled in?  Yea, I’m getting myself a four-legged training pal.  And I cannot WAIT.

Last time around, my dog was the epitome of lazy:  I would leave him home for 11-12 hours at a time and when I would get home?  He’d look at me from his perch on the couch and cock his head at me as if to say, “Tired?  Wanna nap with me for awhile?”  Yup.  I had the best dog.

But he was never a runner.  And that was my fault – I got him from the pound when he was older and I never took the time to properly train him on leash.  He would be okay walking, but running?  He would either be sprinting ahead or stubbornly stopping to sniff and mark things behind me.

This time around I’m doing it right.  I’m going to make sure I make the effort to train the new recruit to run with me.  Make the new pooch a motivator for me to get off my duff and get outside, too.  Gotta walk the dog, right?

I’ll probably go the same route as last time — go to the pound, find a dog that needs a good home and some lovin’ (and who’s already been house-trained!).  And one that will give me the puppy-dog eyes guilt trip when I’m sitting on the couch, ice cream in hand, instead of pounding out some miles, dog at my side.  My future pup has NO idea that he’ll be one of the few dogs around that will BE the trainer as well as the one being trained!

Yup – I’m indoctrinating the newest breed of triathamutt.  Super Dog!

The ice cream is winning

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Published on: January 11, 2011

You know, the holidays are always tough:  tons of food around and everyone seems to encourage the idea that any sweet imbued with the warm fuzziness of Christmas is calorie-free.  Let me be the first to tell you:  this is not the truth.

Still – I managed to maintain my weight, despite indulging in my fair share of the holiday treats.  I mean, heck – it’s easier to skip dinner than it is to skip the Christmas cookies, right?  Seemed like a fair trade to me, and while not the smartest way to go about things, it worked.

But now that the holidays are over and all sorts of good, healthy resolutions have been made, I thought it would be easy.  At this point last year, I had completely committed to a nutritious lifestyle and was on my way to dropping 10 pounds, just in the month of January.

This year?  Yea, not so much.  Part of the problem is a lack of focus:  I’m in the midst of packing up my house to move to a new place, and I’m overwhelmed and stressed by the whole process.  Now, I’m pretty good at moving stuff — I change houses about every 5 years — but this time seems different.  Between the market being so bad that my house will have to look PERFECT and the fact that I’m drastically downsizing and have to get rid of a ton of stuff, I’m finding myself wandering from room to room, eyes glazed over, too paralyzed with stress to actually be productive and get things done.

Of course, the end result is that I’m not making time to train. I’ve got a very specific deadline for getting the house in order – there isn’t much that gets more priority than this.  And because I’m over-the-top stressed?  Yea, I’m stress eating.  And I made a major mistake:  I brought ice cream into the house (it was a BOGO offer! couldn’t pass it up!) and now I’m consumed with the idea of, well, consuming it.

So, I’m headed in the wrong direction.  I closed out 2010 headed in the right direction but this month has seen the skid marks resulting from the massive braking and reversal of direction I’m doing on all the good stuff.

My goal right now is to try and hold steady for this month.  Just get through this.  Once I actually move (which should be mid-February), I’ll have no excuses.  I’ll be closer to work (saving a LOT of commute time), getting more sleep and no longer stressing about making my house all beautiful and such for the market.  Sounds like perfection, right?

Life will be all butterflies and rainbows (and sidewalks that don’t need to be shoveled by me!) and I can’t wait to be in at a point where everything has no choice but to come together.

And until then?  I can see the light (bright sunlight?) at the end of the tunnel, and I’m just holdin’ on ….

By the wayside

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Published on: January 9, 2011

A triathlete friend of mine recently pulled me aside and asked me, point blank:  “so, are you even a triathlete anymore?  Or have you become a complete wuss and given up on the sport?”

Well, it’s true… I’m certainly not the triathlete I used to be.  In the past two years?  I think I did a total of one triathlon.  And that was an all-women’s sprint triathlon where I could wear my wetsuit (and it was basically a pool swim, even!).

So, yes.  I believe that officially makes me a triathlon wuss.

And I’m not entirely sure that’s something I want to change, either.  It’s well-known in these parts that I’ve got little love for the water.  If I never went swimming again, I don’t think it would bother me one bit.  I’m glad that I overcame my fear of it, and I’m proud of myself for taking on the 1.2 mile half ironman swim in Lake Michigan (twice already!), but don’t know that I feel the need to go back and do it again.

My reasoning goes like this:  I don’t like to swim.  I’m an adult.  I get to make my own decisions, especially about things that are considered “hobbies” in my life.  Therefore, the math looks like this:  don’t like to swim + an adult + make my own decisions = NO SWIMMING!! YAY!!

I suspect I’ll stay active in the sport to some extent, though mostly racing triathlons where I can hack the swim without training (meaning – easy, short, wetsuit-legal swim).  I do like the idea of duathlons, though.  I think the bike cross-training will be good for me, and what’s not to love about a race that allows you to run twice?  Right?!

This is the year that a bunch of my friends are headed to IMWI to race.  There’s a part of me that wanted to be out there with them… but, unfortunately (or fortunately!) there wasn’t another part of me willing to commit to the rather insane hours of training — especially all the time in the pool (I mean, 4500y swims??!  Just kill me now….).  I’m not totally discounting the idea of an Ironman.  But certainly not today.  Or this year.  But – someday.  Perhaps.

This is what I figure:  I spent the last 2 years doing not much racing, not much training.  In the past 4 months or so, my running mojo has definitely returned with a very fun vengeance.  And my interest is certainly piqued at thinking about how much I can improve my bike time in the Metlife Duathlon in June.  And that’s about where my racing desires end.  To be social, I might hop in and do the Subaru sprint triathlon, but that’s as wet as I’ll get this year.

You know, except for all the sweating I’ll be doing.

Drumroll, please…

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Published on: January 7, 2011

I know everyone has been anxiously awaiting hearing about the results of my body fat test (don’t deny it – you’ve been doing nothing but watching your RSS Feeds and Facebook for evidence of a new post about this).  It’s long overdue and I know I’ve owed putting it out here, but….

I have to admit – I’ve been less than ready to publicize those results all over The Interwebz.

First, let me remind you of what my baseline is:  according to my hydrostatic weighing a mere 16 months ago, I was at 21.1% body fat.  Going into this bod pod session, I really wasn’t sure what to expect — hoping for lower (duh), but wouldn’t have been surprised with something either in the same range or a touch higher, even.

So, when the results came back, I was flabbergasted (note: I love that word).  After picking my jaw up from the floor, I immediately started arguing with the technician that this could not possibly be correct.

Any guesses?  No?  Okay – I’ll tell you:  27.7%.

I’m not kidding when I say that I raised a little hell after getting the results — I was seriously confused as to how that could even be in the realm of possibility.  And yes – I understand that the actual number is just an estimation (no matter how you come by it – the only sure-fire accurate method of finding out your body fat percentage is during autopsy.  Which hasn’t yet made it to my option list yet.).  But still.  Right?

Regardless, I put up enough of a stink that I had two athletic trainers in there talking me down.  Even though I didn’t specifically pay for any kind of analysis (psychological, bod pod or otherwise), they were patient and spent a lot of time talking it out with me.  And what conclusion did we come to?

Well, I told them I had been trying to drop weight.  And after months of basically staying at the same place, I decided to drastically cut calories.  See – being a runner, every pound means something.  Actually, it’s been theorized that this “something” actually equates to about 2 seconds a mile.  So – weighing less?  As a runner?  Good thing.

Of course, having a huge calorie deficit everyday (I had been essentially not eating dinner and not even refueling after afternoon workouts) will have some impact:  yes, you will lose weight.  But – the weight you lose?  Probably muscle, not fat.  As the very nice, patient trainers told me, it’s easy to lose weight but hard to lose body fat.

So, what I had been accomplishing with the weeks of only dreaming about pot roast and ice cream for dessert was that my body was using muscle to fuel my body rather than fat stores or food that I was taking in. Which, as it turns out?  Is a bad thing.  The scale might have had kind things to say to me over those weeks, but in fact, I was doing myself more harm than good.  All my training was being undermined by a lack of fuel to rebuild and grow stronger.

And – I know, I know.  How many times have I told someone, “You’re not eating enough!”  I should know better.  Ironically, I wanted a quick fix for losing weight and ultimately it ended up being a way to lose muscle instead (and that was muscle I was working hard to gain!).

Because the nice bod pod people (that has a very alien ring to it, doesn’t it?) were so impressed with my concern about my health (or just were doing anything they could to get me out the door…), they told me that they would go over my test results, plug some numbers into some spreadsheets they had created, and send me a report that would tell me how many calories per day I should be eating and the macro breakdown of those calories.

When I got this piece of information, it was eye-opening:  I was supposed to be eating AT LEAST 1800 calories a day as a baseline, meaning that was my resting metabolic rate (calories I would burn a day doing no training).  And on days when I trained particularly hard, I should compensate with more calories.  During my little adventure to try and lose weight?  I was probably only eating 1000-1200 calories a day.  Tops.  Which also means that on days I trained, I was netting somewhere around 800 calories a day.  SO not healthy. I approached the 1800 kcal mandate with some skepticism, but decided that it couldn’t hurt to try it.

I’ve been following their dietary suggestions now for a two months.  And? Amazingly?  Slowly but surely I’m still dropping weight.  I haven’t been back to take another body fat test, but I’m going to assume that I’m probably headed in a better direction than I was before.

So, while this was a pretty awful experience (“there’s no crying in body fat testing!”), I re-learned a lesson the hard way:  starving yourself isn’t a quick way to anything good.  As an athlete, especially, the body needs fuel and to deny it that nutrition, is asking for bad things to happen.

Just so you know.

Now, go have a cookie!

Lofty?

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Published on: January 4, 2011

Just in case you hadn’t noticed, I’m kind of a goal-oriented person (can I be nominated for Understatement of the Year yet?).  I NEED something out there to work towards.  Because otherwise?  Yea, I don’t actually work at all.

My recent success at the half marathon distance has gotten me thinking about some pretty lofty (for me) goals.  I want to be fitter, stronger, faster and more competitive at 40 (okay, okay… 41 for the racing season) than I was at 30.

(Of course, 10 years ago I was 40 pounds heavier and spent more time on my couch than on my treadmill… so, perhaps my goals aren’t quite so lofty?)

Okay – let me modify slightly:  I want to be more competitive than I was a few years ago, when I was training regularly and in pretty good shape for a 30-something.  I want to prove that 40+ isn’t over the hill.  At least not for this chick.

Here’s what I’m after:

Another half marathon PR.  I’ll be following Hal’s advanced half marathon plan again, hoping that’ll spring me for a sub-1:50 half mary.  Actually, I’m going to shoot for an 8:15m/m pace half marathon (which is 1:48ish), but I’ll settle for anything less than 1:50.

And why is 1:50 such a magic number?  Because that’ll get me into a starting corral for…

The Chicago Marathon!!

Yep – that’s my big A+++ race this year.  I’ve tried the marathon 3 times now.  And haven’t yet really pulled it off to my satisfaction — there’s always been something that’s happened:  injury, intestinal issues, heat wave that got the event CANCELLED when I was at mile 22… you know, the usual.

So… fourth time’s the charm, right?

I’ll be likely jumping on the Hal train for the marathon as well, seeing as how he hasn’t steered me wrong yet (though if it’s a train, is there really much steering involved?  Hmmm).  It’ll be a vigorous, high-mileage plan and I’ve got to admit, Hal’s got me a little scared right now.

Luckily, I don’t have to think about that quite yet.  After all, I’ve got a half marathon PR to go get first, right?

Here we go again

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Published on: January 2, 2011

Another year comes, another resolution to be better about keeping up with this blog.  But, I really, really mean it this time.  Really!

2010 — despite my silence — went out with a bang for me:  a half marathon PR at the Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon in December.  Back in October I had talked about how I was following Hal Higdon’s advanced half marathon plan… and that while it seemed to be good at the moment, I wasn’t sure that I’d be able to follow through with the rigorous 5-6 days/week of running.  But – as it turns out – my body actually DOES like running that much.  It’s almost like running that much doesn’t give my body a chance to forget how to do it right.  Or something like that.

The race itself?  I couldn’t have asked for better conditions: started out around 50 degrees, absolutely no wind and a flat course, most of which was up and back down the Vegas Strip (lots and LOTS of interesting people to distract you).  I went out at a conservatively fast pace, and felt like I was just flying along for the first 8 miles or so.  And that’s when the race truly started for me.

I got to the 5k-left mark and was struggling; that time in a race where you have to dig down, know that you trained for this, and keep moving forward.  I knew I had a bit of a cushion built in, but not so much that I could slack off.  At this point, all the fun people and distractions?  Not so good.  I’d start looking around and all of a sudden, my pace was a minute slower than it should have been.

Time to focus.

The closer I got to the finish line, the more panicked I became because I kept thinking I had miscalculated somewhere in the last few miles, and I wasn’t going to make it.  Problem is, my legs couldn’t go any faster than what I was doing.  Of course, my oxygen-starved brain wasn’t helping my already-challenged math skills.

So, knowing that I was putting out maximum effort, I stopped looking at my watch and just concentrated on turning my legs over as quickly as I could.  The finish line seemed so far away…

I scanned the horizon, looking for the finish banner, but not seeing it.  I heard the music, knew I couldn’t be far, but WHERE THE HELL WAS THE FINISH LINE??!  I finally realized the joke the race organizers had played on me:  the finish line was actually OFF the Strip.

Once in the parking lot of the Mandalay Bay hotel, I sprinted madly (or – stumbled awkwardly, depending on your viewpoint) for the finish. And managed to eke a 73 second PR (despite the fact that I had already re-calculated myself out of it)!  I left it all out on the course, that’s for sure, and as I drunkenly weaved through the finish area, all I knew is that I had a big, stupid grin on my face.  I DID IT.

Hal made me do it.  And then I went and actually did it.  What a great way to end my season!  And – I have to admit – Hal might be making me do other such outrageous things in the near future…. stay tuned…

Dunkless dunking

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Published on: October 21, 2010

Just a short update on my previous post about my slightly-crazy idea of having my body fat tested in a dunk tank:

It didn’t happen.

Yup – trainer dude had the stomach flu and was kind enough to cancel instead of passing it along to me.  He’s supposed to call and reschedule, but hasn’t yet.

So, in the meantime, I put my thinkin’ cap on, started up The Google and found another alternative:

The Bod Pod.

As I understand it (and – frankly – my understanding of such concepts borders on near-idiot level), it works in much the same way as the dunk tank, but instead of measuring water displacement, it measures air displacement.

Therefore – the Dunkless Dunking!

You get put in a pod that looks much like Mork’s egg (from the TV show Mork and Mindy… and, yes I realize how much I just dated myself), and apparently you sit very, very still for about a minute and that’s it.  No water.  No gasping for air.  No near-death thoughts floating through your head.  Should be a breeze!  Right?

I’ve done the research, and reviews mostly say that the bod pod results positively correlate with hydrostatic weighing (which is the accepted gold-standard for body fat testing), which is good.  However, I did find some articles that concluded that it overestimates body fat in some individuals — which is decidedly NOT good.

The upside with using a different method entirely?  If I don’t like the answer I get, I always have the option of blaming it on the Bod Pod (it couldn’t be MY fault, could it??).

The big day?  Tomorrow.  I’ve managed to drop a few pounds from last week, so I’m as prepared as I’m going to be for this.  And after?  Dinner at my Mom’s.  Which will either be a “dang, I’m AWESOME” celebratory dinner or a “I might as well do some major emotional eating to cover up my misery” dinner.

It’ll be tasty either way.

Getting ready for the dunk

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Published on: October 16, 2010

If y’all remember back to April 2009 (really? does anyone?  I know I barely do…) I had a pretty momentous adventure:  I went and got myself dunked in a tank to measure my body fat percentage.  Oh, the fun I had!

Now that I’ve managed to (mostly) erase the memory of the day’s overwhelming panic and anxiety, I’m ready to head back. See how I’ve done in the past 18 months.  If I’ve made a difference.

When I called to make the appointment, I figured that I’d have a few weeks to prepare.  You know, diet more, exercise more and basically drop, like, 20 pounds before I went in there. Turns out, they’re the epitome of efficiency over there — I called a few days ago, and they managed to fit me in on Tuesday.  Lucky, lucky me!

Which means it’s crash diet time!  I’ve been cutting calories (and keeping up training) in hopes of dropping at least a few pounds between now and then.  As a side note, this is actually working.  Meaning, my frustration with being stuck at the same weight was me just not getting the numbers right, probably.  Which is a story for another time, I think.

So, exactly how does today me compare with April 2009 me?

I do know that I’m carrying more muscle.  I look back on my logs from then and I was bench pressing about 50-55# max and now 65# is my warmup and I’ll top out over 100#.  Curling 30# then and 50# now. Squats?  Wow.  From 45# for a set of 10 to 145# for a set of 10 now. So – stronger.  No question.

But I weigh more.  Is it all muscle?  Hard to tell.  Despite being able to see actual muscles in spots, I’m still carrying a lot of fluff.  And not tasty marshmallow fluff, either.  Just sayin’.

Are measurements a more accurate predictor?  If so – then it’s anyone’s guess since between then and now things are relatively the same.  And yes, I have measurement data that goes back a few years.  I’m a geek like that.

So, I’m a little afraid. Logically I think that my bf% has GOT to be better.  But, there’s still a voice in my head that’s not quite so sure.  And – I might add – is pretty vocal about it!

And if actually turns out to be worse than before?  Well, I don’t think I can be responsible for my reaction… I might not be the most mature person at that time (hmm… perhaps I ought to let the trainer who’s doing this know that…).  Maybe I’ll be able to hold off the wailing and gnashing of teeth until I get to the car, though.

Maybe.

Hal made me do it

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Published on: October 10, 2010

So, after a month or so of just doing easy base miles, I’m now 3 weeks deep into Hal Higdon‘s advanced half marathon plan.

You read that right:  the advanced plan.  Now, as I’ve said here before, I’ve been a total slacker for almost 2 years now.  You’d think I’d want to be smart and ease my way into this, right?

You would have thought wrong.  I’m nowhere NEAR that smart.

Yea, I thought the beginner plan was way too easy.  And the intermediate?  I almost went with that plan — it seemed the prudent thing to do.  But, as I surveyed the running plans on the Hal Higdon website, I could almost hear the disembodied voice of Hal urging me to click on the Advanced plan.  “You’ll love it”, he seemed to whisper in my ear.

And I clicked.  And I did love.

It would be hard.  Well, advanced even.  But I thought:  this is just what I need.  Hal to ride my butt and get me to this half marathon in December in the best shape I’ve ever been in.

Yes, Hal’s got a tough job to do.  Whipping me into top form — after almost 2 years of nothing-much — wasn’t for no sissy running plan, that’s for sure.

And so far, the plan is coming close to, but not yet totally kicking my butt.  I’ve been running 5-6 times a week, and running more pain-free than I have in a long while.  Cardio’s building nicely, legs are feeling good and I’m really excited about training.  So far, Hal hasn’t led me wrong.

I’m taking it week-by-week, swapping workouts where life dictate, but haven’t missed a session yet, which is unusual for me. Typically I would have already deteriorated into not even looking at the plan by now — so, I’ m hopeful at the moment that this might stick.  Of course, 3 weeks is just a small bit (well, 25%, I suppose) of the full 12 weeks of training.  There’s still time to revert back to my normal behavior.

Perhaps this is my new normal?  That remains to be seen, I suppose.  I’m optimistic, though: hell, weirder things have happened.  And plus, Hal thinks I can do it.  And he knows everything, right?

Impossible?

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Published on: October 7, 2010

In the midst of my internet meanderings, I came across a daily motivational quote on potential, and in the middle of it were these two sentences:

“Think of all the things, once considered to be impossible, that are now commonplace.  Always remember that when there is a good enough reason, there is a way.”

And that got me to thinkin’ a bit … I mean, really – how many things have I now done that I was TERRIFIED of doing at one point or things that I would never have thought even be possible? And, as you can imagine, I managed to scrape up a few examples…

(drumroll, please)

5 Seemingly Impossible Things

  1. Running a 5k … I remember being at the Brookfield Zoo Run Run 5k/1 mile walk.  Some college friends and I were there for the Zoo Walk Walk (as we liked to call it), thinking it’d be a fun way to pass a weekend morning.  As I looked on at the people lined up for the 5k, I was probably 40 pounds overweight but still a weekend athlete, and inexplicably I thought to myself, “I could totally do that.  It’s only a couple of miles” (note that I didn’t actually know how many miles were in a 5k yet).  And then, even more inexplicably:  “Next year I’ll do it.  Next year.”  And next year?  I toed the starting line of the 5k.  I remember being so nervous, so scared I wouldn’t make it to the finish line.  I had trained, sure, but this was different:  for the first time in years, I was doing something competitive that was just me pushing myself as hard as possible.  I finished that first 5k in 29:36.  I was ecstatic. And mostly dead. Which was good, because if I had more energy, I would have puked.
  2. Running a half marathon … this has turned into one of “my stories”.  You know – everyone has them – the stories that you trot out for people that don’t know you too well, the stories that are fun, entertaining and are guaranteed a laugh or two.  Very long story short:  I broke my arm.  Badly.  I was in rehab for a very, very long time.  Long enough to become friends with some of the folks there.  One of the OT’s?  She dragged me, kicking and screaming into joining with Team In Training to run the Country Music Half Marathon in Nashville.  I thought she was crazy.  I thought *I* was crazy for allowing myself to be peer pressured into it.  Funny how the thing I so didn’t want to do, the thing that seemed like the longest, hardest thing I’d ever done turned into one of the best things I ever did for myself.  Or, rather, was forced to do for myself.  :)
  3. Getting up at 4am every day … a non-sports/non-tri-related impossible thing.  When I was in college, the 8am class was my nemesis.  Unless I absolutely had to, I wouldn’t schedule one because I KNEW I wouldn’t be able to get up for it.  One semester I ended up in a 5-day/week, 8am Advanced Calculus that just about killed me.  I skipped at least once a week — even though I could nap for 1.5 hours in between that and my next class.  If you would have told me then that I’d be STARTING work at 6am?  I would have laughed at you. No – I would have had milk (or Coke Classic, as my drink of choice back then) coming out of my nose, rolling on the floor, unable to stop the tears, laughed at you.  And now?  My alarm clock starts ringing at around 3:40am.  Every work day.  And – like the responsible adult I am – I get up and get going.  I honestly never would have thought it possible.
  4. Surviving a triathlon swim leg … when I decided to dip my toes into the triathlon waters, I knew that swimming would be my Achilles heel.  Even as a kid, going swimming wasn’t ever high on my list of things to do.  Oh sure, I was forced to go to swim lessons by my well-meaning parents, but I never enjoyed it.  In fact, the mandatory swim class in high school?  Yea, I managed to finagle my way out of it.  Wasn’t pretty, and the teacher (who – of course – was also the swim coach) openly derided me in front of the class, but hey – I didn’t have to swim.  Who’s laughing now, buddy? (at least that was my thought as I strode triumphantly out of the pool area and headed to study hall).  So, fast forward to summer, 2004:  my first triathlon.  Um, yea.  Perhaps, I *should* have taken swim class in high school.  It wasn’t pretty.  Lifeguard assistance was necessary (hyperventilation + swimming = notsomuchfun) and I ended up doggy-paddling to the other side of the lake.  I made it, but had decided then and there that this was the end of my triathlon career.  One and done!  Apparently, I’m a glutton for punishment, though…
  5. Completing a Half Ironman … I remember the debate, the back and forth about whether I could even dare to do such a thing.  The adrenalin rush when I went through the online sign-up.  The immediate panic about 3 seconds after the adrenalin rush.  And the low-level panic that stalked me throughout the 20-week training program.  I was nervous about it all, but mostly the thought of 1.2 miles in Lake Michigan made me so crazy it almost gave me hives.  And then – the day arrived.  To my amazement, Lake Michigan – for the first time ever, it seemed – was calm.  As I stood on the beach, awaiting my wave start, a calm took over:  I knew I’d be okay.  That somehow I’d make it.  That even if I had to bob from start to finish in my wetsuit, I could do that.  And you know what?  I did.  As it turned out, the swim was the best part of my day.  The bike?  Who knew that 56 miles could be so HARD?  And the run??  Let’s not even go there.  I started the run thinking, “I’m FINALLY at the part that I like the best!” but switched quickly to thinking, “OMG THIS HURTS… is it done yet? I’m never gonna make it!”  But – 6+ hours later, I crossed the finish line, never in my life so proud of what I had accomplished.  Style, panache and all semblance of sanity may have deserted me over the course of 70.3 miles, but I did it.

And what are some of your Seemingly Impossible Things?

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Welcome , today is Friday, December 15, 2017