Sunday, January 18, 2009

Cooking, one legged pedalling and a good season to come!

Okie dokie! Back among the living now. Thank goodness! I was beginning to wonder if January was a foreshadowing of the rest of the year. I decided that I prefer thinking that I'm just getting all of the bad stuff out of the way to enjoy a great season.

I got Retuled! A very cool 3-D, state of the art bike fitting they now have at Chainwheel. It shows you everything - your position from every angle, power output, cadence, etc... They hook you up (literally) to get a readout of everything. They show you a chart of a "normal" range of numbers that you aim to hit. Of course, every body is different and Pat was sure to make it clear that he understood this. Their focus is to get you to a comfortable place thus increasing your power output. Because after all, if you don't feel good you can't perform well! He made a few minor adjustments and I tried it out on Sunday.

I have to pre-empt my experience with the fact that I've recently started cooking for us more. I received a really great cookbook for Christmas named 'The Foods You Crave'. I decided that I wanted to cook on Sundays for the upcoming week. I like the idea of making things because that way you know what's in your food. I want less sodium, more protein and convenience. So I make out a list, I go to the grocery store somewhere between Wed. and Sat., prep on Sat. and cook on Sun. I freeze what I can so all we have to do for the most part is take something out of the freezer for dinner in the morning so it's thawed by that evening. I've had a lot of success so far and it's helping us to stay honest with ourselves. Chris is even eating salads now (requesting them actually). This, of course, excites me not only because it's healthier, but I like salads and they are easy to make.

So after cooking most of what I wanted to cook on Sunday, I was about to start climbing the walls. I thought briefly about putting my bike on the trainer and doing my drills inside because of the 15 - 20 mph winds. Oh, the sky was so blue and it was almost 60 degrees (in Jan.?!!!!), so I loaded my bike into the VUE and went on my merry little way to Cook's. I got a bad feeling on the way out there, but chose to ignore it. I hate it when I'm right sometimes! I didn't take into consideration that everyone else on God's green Earth wanted to be outside and on the River Trail too!

I got out of my car and almost got right back in because it sure didn't feel like almost 60 degrees now! I unloaded my bike anyway - I was determined to ride outside and ignore my gut and goosebumps. At least I was smart enough to put on a long sleeved base layer and had some long fingered gloves. Rats! No ear covers anywhere in my car, though. Usually as long as I can keep my ears warm I'm okay.

I finally get everything together and I'm ready to ride. I actually had to pee, but I couldn't bear the thought of sitting down on the ice-covered toilet seat that would make me even colder. I already couldn't feel my fingers. So I bit the bullet and hopped on the GURU. I mean, hey, I've ridden up Hwy 7 with about 8,000 feet of climbing in a pounding rain storm complete with hail, fog, wind, thunder and lightening with free flowing traffic. I'm not going to let a little nip in the air prevent me from doing what I love. Have I mentioned that I hate it when I'm right sometimes?

I usually listen to my gut, but not that day for some reason. I got started and it wasn't that bad. Eventually I noticed more and more people out on the trail so I kept having to unclip to get around them. There were people everywhere and they were NOT paying attention. Lots of children with no boundaries from the parents on where they could go. I realize that kids will be kids, mind you, but when their parents let them do whatever and go wherever they want without teaching them proper safety (look both ways before you cross the trail) it really kind of pisses me off. It also affirms the fact that I really am okay with just having nieces and nephews.

I started approaching a group of young men that seemed to be scattered through one section of the trail. That was the last time I unclipped. I couldn't get my left shoe clipped back in. I grew more and more frustrated and by the time I got to a stopping place to see what the problem was I was absolutely exhausted from wasting all of my energy on being angry. We had decided during my bike fitting to put some wedges on my shoe. Well, the wedges on my left shoe had gotten bent up and prevented me from clipping back in. It was getting late and Chris and I were supposed to meet with some friends at 5:30 for coffee. I still had a 10 minute run to do. I didn't have time to fix my shoe. Well, I'm pretty sure you can guess what went on for the entire way back. That's right! I got to pedal primarily with my right leg into the 15-20 mph HEADWIND! I think the only time I have ever been more miserable was on the last day of the Northwest AR Challenge. This was a four day, 353 mile, 20,000 feet of climbing ride. The ride up Hwy 7 that I wrote about above was Day 2. You may think that on the last day after all that climbing you would welcome a flat at the end of the ride. Unless there is a 30 mph headwind!!!! Even with my beloved pulling we probably averaged about 9 mph on that stretch.

On the way back I passed a couple of friends who looked so happy. Of course, they were in the tailwind and on their way home. JBar called me the next day to tell me how unhappy I looked. Who was unhappy? Not Little Miss Sunshine! I finally made it back to Cook's; probably averaging about 12 - 13 mph. I think that's pretty good for a one legged suffer fest!

I had a fleeting thought of skipping the run, but decided to do it anyway. I mean, how much worse could it be than the ride? I put my running shoes on and took off. I kept waiting for the familiar twinge in my hip and much to my pain!!!!! Absolutely none! I was so excited that it made the ride seem like it wasn't so bad.

You know you have good workouts and not so good workouts. You really need both. You need the bad ones to remind you that sometimes it hurts to be human. You need the good ones to remind you that you can do incredible things and what it's like when the pain from the bad workouts go away. I'm just happy that the good outweighs the bad so far. This is going to be a great season... The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Grounded and ready to fly

Okay, I know it looks like I've been slacking, but I've been battling a sinus infection for the past 7 days! Finally had to see the doc yesterday. A steroid shot, day 2 of the Z-Pac and some nose spray later, the fog is starting to clear. Liz pulled the reins on my training until I'm 100% better. I hate feeling crappy!

I did get to start my Total Body Course that I'm teaching this morning at 5:30 a.m. I know some of you have your heads cocked sideways thinking about "getting" to start ANYTHING at 5:30 a.m. Yup! That means getting up at 4:00 a.m. to get to the gym by 5:20. The first class is always about working out the kinks and blowing out the cobwebs. You find out what you can cut out and what needs to stay on the program. Anything that elicits heavy grunting and sweating definitely stays! These people work hard when they take these classes and I'm always happy to see their interest. I've never been one to like being up in front of even a few people with all eyes on me. It was always seriously nerve wracking to me. What's kind of personality do you need to have to pull it off? Do I need to be witty and entertaining? How about serious and focused? Will it be challenging enough? Will everyone get the benefit that I want them to get? I go through this every time I start one of these things. The reality is that people want you to be real, sincere, genuine. All they ask is that you be honest and yourself. You don't have to have a witty dialogue throughout the experience. I just have to remember to enjoy myself and remember that my job is FUN! It's a privilege to get to do what you love and are passionate about for a living.

Sometimes I forget this and it becomes "a job", but in those moments that I feel that way if I get really still and just breathe it all comes back to me. You have to remember to stay grounded and do everything you do with purpose. Live and breathe every moment of everyday in and exhale out all that unimportant stuff. Take a moment to get centered then bring yourself back to whatever madness you need to deal with. Here, let's try it now...





See, isn't that better?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Something to make you cry and make you laugh!

My training is going well so that's good news. It feels good to be getting pain-free again. I did some drills on the trainer for an hour and then ran on the treadmill for 20 minutes (easy pace). I've been getting acupuncture for my hip and yesterday I went to see a friend of mine who is also a massage therapist. She asked me what I needed her to do and I told her whatever she had to do to get this hip back to good. She did an evaluation on me. She did some Rossiter work which is somewhat like Rolfing, but...hmmmm...a bit more intense. Well, a lot more intense, if you ask me. This actually made my eyes water. We'll call it an exquisite pain. If you're an athlete then you know exactly what I'm talking about. You are generally lying on the floor as the practitioner takes her/his heel and finds a "good" spot then proceeds to put pressure (not their entire body weight) while you go through some range of motion. Brilliant! The client is essentially doing all the work. I have to learn more about this! Anyway, let's just suffice it to say that she got to the root of the problem I believe. I feel really great today, so I think I'm on the right track!
Okay, someone sent this to me a few days ago and it cracked me uuuuuup!! It reminds me a little of that game Mad Libs (I love that game). I've sent it to some of you already and your responses have been keeping me quite entertained. So break the code and leave a comment on what yours is!

Here is mine as an example:

I sang to a fork in my car because I'm cool like that

Pick the month you were born:
January-------I kicked
February------I loved
March--------I karate chopped
April----------I licked
May----------I jumped on
June----------I smelled
July-----------I did the Macarena With
August--------I had lunch with
September----I danced with
October-------I sang to
November-----I yelled at
December-----I ran over

Pick the day (number) you were born on:
1-------a birdbath
2-------a monster
3-------a phone
4-------a fork
5-------a snowman
6-------a gangster
7-------my mobile phone
8-------my dog
9-------my best friends' boyfriend
10-------my neighbour
11-------my science teacher
12-------a banana
13-------a fireman
14-------a stuffed animal
15-------a goat
16-------a pickle
17-------your mom
18-------a spoon
19------ - a smurf
20-------a baseball bat
21-------a ninja
22-------Chuck Norris
23-------a noodle
24-------a squirrel
25-------a football player
26-------my sister
27-------my brother
28-------an iPod
29-------a surfer
30-------a homeless guy
31-------a llama

What is the last number of the year you were born:
1--------- In my car
2 --------- On your car
3 ----------- In a hole
4 ----------- Under your bed
5 ----------- Riding a Motorcycle
6 --------- sliding down a hill b
7 --------- in an elevator
8---------- at the dinner table
9 -------- In line at the bank
0 -------- in your bathroom

Pick the colour of shirt you are wearing:
White---------because I'm cool like that
Black---------because that's how I roll.
Pink-----------because I'm NOT crazy.
Red-----------because the voices told me to.
Blue-----------because I'm sexy and I do what I want
Green---------because I think I need some serious help.
Purple---------because I'm AWESOME!
Gray----------because Big Bird said to and he's my leader.
Yellow--------because someone offered me 1,000,000 dollars
Orange--------because my family thinks I'm stupid anyway.
Brown---------because I can.
Other----------because I'm a Ninja!
None----------because I can't control myself!

Trust me, you're gonna laugh!!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Sitting idle, but revving up...

Feeling a little dull yet antsy today. I'm ready to get into a routine. I haven't really had any time to sit down and think what that means, what it will include and how to go about it. I always begin the new year with getting organized. I'm ready to sit and clean out folders, files and drawers. A total purging and cleansing experience!

Then the exciting part comes...NEW OFFICE SUPPLIES!!!!! Some people love that new car smell; I love that new notebook smell. Some women buy shoes and clothes to cheer themselves up. I go buy new pens and paper. When I first told Chris about this when we were dating, he was a little confused and intrigued. He thought he had women somewhat figured out, but I threw him a curve ball with that one. I'm not saying that I'm not high maintenance (I think all women are on some level), but I pretty much maintain myself. Anyway, I know I'm not alone in this love of office supplies. The reason I know this is because when I confess this to some people they just exclaim, "Me toooooo!!!!". Like they are relieved that they aren't the only one with this affliction or affinity (all depends on how you look at it). I guess I could have a worse addiction, so all things considered, I think I'm pretty stable and maybe a bit nerdy at worst. So this little office supply-aholic will belly up to the bar and treat herself to a plethora of pens, paper, folders and pretty much anything that suits her fancy (only in a blog can you "speak" of yourself in third person). So I'm taking this upcoming Monday and Tuesday off to do just get things done that have piled up this holiday season. I'm hoping to feel more together by the middle of next week. Just got done with the last weekend of follies in Shreveport with Chris and friends for the Duathlon and Mountain Bike Race. Neither of which I participated in, but I was more than happy to spectate. I have to say it's a much different experience to watch and I am no good at it. I did get to meet the president of the AR/LA/OK/TX region for USAT, Dave Young! I had initially approach him because of his cool shoes. He was there doing the duathlon and told me about some other multisport events he's done. Like the Ironman in China. He said it was the hottest one he's done and his goal - to be that last finisher. He finished with 20 seconds to spare and said he got treated better than the first place finisher. Fireworks, 5,000 cheering spectators and an interview with a beautiful Chinese newscaster. He said the only thing was that as soon as he ran through the finish line, they collapsed it and there was no food. Someone ran to Burger King for him. The other excitement came from the mountain bike race. Patrick said to me that he was not feeling the love and I almost said, "well, don't do the race", but I knew that would be some wasted breath. He hit a huge, deep pothole and ended up screwing up his shoulder and in the ER. Wow! So that's what a waiting room looks like. I'm so used to being in a treatment room. Anyway, he's okay; they sent him on his way with a prescription for pain meds. He sure is a tough bugger!
I always forget what it's like to get back into it after a sabbatical. Especially the holidays. I gained 6 lbs. and it really makes everything soooooo much harder. I know there is a collective groan going on when I say such things, but it's all relative, right? I start to get a little freaked out when I see 3 lbs. over what I usually weigh, so 6 lbs. is red alert time. Time to get back to low-fat, high fiber and protein. Yep, gonna be living on Kashi Go-Lean Crunch. It's the perfect food because it contains pretty good amounts of all three of those things. Of course, that will start today. Hmmmmm...there's always that last hurrah which is what really makes me completely insane. There is always a good excuse and a reason to throw caution to the wind. Like being out of town. I was relatively good...'cept for Fri. at Burger King when we hadn't even made it out of town yet. Well, I've started the morning with my bowl of Kashi, my scrambled eggs with low-fat cheese and my FRS. Getting ready to go swim and do my strength training routine. I think after this week I will be giving little updates and stats of my training. Last week and this week are the adaptation phase. So basically it's been drills and those are just too complicated to describe. I'm really having trouble with the swimming drills, but I now am armed with a kickboard and flippers. Can't wait to see how that goes! I'll letcha know!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!!!!!

and that's all I got to say about that.