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Things I Learned Today Other Than Eat Breakfast

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Friday, January 13, 2012


Now that's a big scary kind of thing, isn't it? Brings to mind charley horses and barfing and the footage of those freakazoid (read: awesome) Ironman people wetting themselves and crawling across the finish line before collapsing into the arms of their loved ones (who are decidedly too calm as they catch their loved one IMHO).

Well, not so much. I mean, it isn't easy, and I couldn't have done it this time last year, but I didn't puke. I didn't even ponder puking. In fact, until I sat down to write this blog entry I hadn't even thought the word puke all day long. It was a puke-free beginning to the holiday weekend.

I'm not ready for a traditional olympic distance, but I'm certainly ready and willing to do this again and to try to get a whole lot faster. Quite frankly, I enjoyed the sprint triathlon experience, even if it was in a gym while watching the snow fall outside.

As much as I hate admitting it, dang it, Cannie50 was right... I really dig this. A lot. A lot lot. Like maybe I should save up for one of those obscenely expensive road bikes and reread Slow Fat Triathlete and seriously ponder being last in a real honest to god organized triathlon this summer.

I prepared last night by going through an extensive preparation ritual that included all of the following: eating some rice.

Clockwise from top:
Avocado, tempeh, long grain and wild rice, raspberries

I forgot to eat breakfast. Seriously. I'm not sure how I managed that, but the first thing I learned today was EAT. Had I remembered, I would have had some almonds or raspberries or blackberries. The local store has blackberries for 50 cents per pint and raspberries 4 pints for $5, so my fridge looks like a fruit hoarder has moved in.

Maybe this is a sign of progress? I've always envied those people who say things like "oh, I forgot to eat today, no wonder I'm starving" and when they say it they don't even look like they are lying through their teeth.

Here are more things I learned today:

*I'm slow, but I don't quit.
I believe this is the trait that my husband probably secretly refers to as "pain in the a$$" when I'm not around. Also known as stubborn.

*I may be the only person on earth whose least favorite leg is the bike.
Maybe it was because I was on a recumbent cycle, but it was entirely lacking in fun and I couldn't seem to adjust it in a way that made my hips quit hurting. I'd rather ride on a spinning cycle with the Lance seat trying to give me what feels like a banana enema.

*There is lots of room for improvement.
Starting with the run. Largely because I ran for a total of two minutes and walked the rest. Actually running during the run will dramatically improve the run portion. Shocking, I know. I wonder if that is why it is called the running portion, because people run? Hmmm. Something to ponder there.

*If you want to take a really challenging yoga class, take one 45 minutes after you finish your first sprint tri.
It was pure force of will that prevented me from spending the entire class hiding in the corner from the big mean (tiny, petite, sweet, blonde) ogre of a yoga instructor.

*The transition from bike to run (ahem, walk) is sucktaculacious.
It's like trying to run (walk) on spaghetti. Overcooked, icky, healthy whole wheat spaghetti. This will take some practice. Maybe I will start doing some time on the treadmill post spinning class for the sole intent and purpose of practicing transitioning.

*Having the tummy growls while running (ahem, walking) is distracting.

*Watching Will & Grace on the fancy treadmill while doing the... run makes it go faster.
It will be interesting to do the same outdoors without tv. I wonder if it will mean a faster time or a slower one to have to set my own pace and have trees for entertainment.

*The fear of the tri is worse than the tri itself.
Seriously, if you can do all of the components separately, the conglomeration of the three isn't totally horrific. Now if you can't swim, then it might be pretty horrible to contemplate 750 meters, but in general, your body naturally slows down to accomodate the additional exercise.

*Peer pressure is a good thing if you aren't 14.
Peer pressure is a commonly underestimated tool. Well, if she can do it, I can do it should be running through your head right now because I'm not in very good shape.

*Not peeing before the next leg because you have a delusion that people don't do that during real triathlons means that you will be in danger of having your bladder rupture as you waddle to the potty when you are done.

*Yes, you deserve a nap after a triathlon, even a shorty like a sprint.
However, you will be too hopped up to do so. Even if you lay there for an hour trying.

So, how slow was I? Well, I have to guess about how long I was on the treadmill because I was so eager to snap my proof photo and get off the thing that I took one that showed I finished but managed to not get my overall time. Doh.

My Times:
Bike: 54:40

Walk: 49 (estimate, probably within 30-60 seconds)

Swim 20:01

So, no Wonderwoman or even a Wonder Twin by any stretch, but I know I can do better next time and this is a great benchmark.

If I can do it, you can do it. Here's why:

I'm probably heavier than you, my last weigh in was over 280 pounds.
I'm probably slower than you on at least one of the legs and probably slower on all 3.
I haven't been an athlete in 20 years.
I'm not fast, I'm just stubborn.
I can't run for more than a minute. Two tops.

I plan to make this a monthly thing.

Like spinning class, the fear of the tri was worse than the tri itself. Honest. I'm totally telling the truth. Scout's honor. (Humor me and pretend I was a Boy Scout, will ya?)

I know DogLady13 --happy birthday!--and my cohort in crime SOUTHPONDCAMP both did the entire thing, so they get a much deserved WOOT WOOT!

I can't wait to hear how everyone else does on their own leg(s) this weekend. Yippee!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    That's fantastic!!! You've inspired me. Now I'm thinking about giving this a try too (no pun intended).
    2188 days ago
    I miss your inspiring blogs :-(
    2237 days ago
  • TERRYT55
    The biking would have been the worst part for me too!

    I can't tell you how much I look forward to your very entertaining blogs!

    Keep up the good work!
    2316 days ago
  • REBECCA180
    Wow, in a word, impressive.

    I just discovered you and I've been seriously entertained and inspired, reading loads of your past posts.
    Excellent writing! Your humor adds a much balance to the pain and suffering we endure in this struggle.

    Thank you!!!
    2320 days ago
  • KAYCEE918
    Congratulations, sounds grueling, but what an accomplishment. emoticon
    2321 days ago
  • KAYCEE918
    Congratulations, sounds grueling, but what an accomplishment. emoticon
    2321 days ago
  • KAYCEE918
    Congratulations, sounds grueling, but what an accomplishment. emoticon
    2321 days ago
    I love the statemen " Peer pressure can be good if you're not 14 ". lol .......I was trying to explain that to my 18 year old yesterday about how awesome I do in Zumba class at gym but not at home !

    Congrats !!!!! Sounds like you are well on your way to being a healthy person !!
    2325 days ago
  • DONNA088
    Good job!
    2327 days ago
  • KSJD711
    Babe- you are so not the only person who is most scared by the bike!!!!!!! I am slow as molasses, but I can get it done. I like the swim, and although I am a slow runner, let's be honest, by that point I'm so happy I'm off the bike, it would matter if the last leg was walking on your hands, or whatever! I have been dfl as my husband calls it a number of times. I have done 8 triathlons and am working towards my 9th - lavaman in Hawaii on April 1. I would love to get up the courage to try escape from alcatraz, but the jumping off the boat thing - and the hills on the bike scare me!!! It looks like you are thinking of it. If you do it, maybe I will. I will at least look into it!!!! Meantime, good luck with training for the tri. Personally, I do my training with a team, team in training. I would highly recommend finding a group of people to train with. It's about the only thing that keeps me going. Okay, let me rephrase, it is very often the only thing that keeps me going, let's just say that I would absolutely have bombed out of this weekend's 30 mile ride, much before mile 29, if my friends had not been there for me. As it was, I had to take my inhaler so much that I just couldn't do that last hill set. Oh well. Now, three days later, and a swim practice later, I'm feeling better about this weekend's bike. So, I would say, try it, go for it, don't worry about the bike, it's only 1/3 of the race anyway! Also, if you are going to come out here, think about Pacific Grove. It's a wonderful, wonderful, fun race. You can do the sprint, or the Olympic. It is in early September! I'll be there. Way to go girl!!!!!

    2327 days ago
    I love running and swimming so I've considered the triathlon many times. I'm just not sure I could do the bike part.

    Ok, I just think that's too much effort.

    But I did love the half marathon so maybe I should suck it up.
    2333 days ago
    As deathly afraid as I am of swimming, running has always been the obstacle for me and triathlons simply because I "couldn't" run. Past tense, because I can now officially call myself a runner. I'm almost done with the Couch to 5K program and I'm here to say it works! There's a great free podcast on ITunes from NHS, which is in England. I've completed 2 half marathons in the past without running a step and am looking forward to blowing my Old & Slow times out of the water. Actually doing an organized event is a super-charged experience. Find a sprint distance tri near you and DO IT!
    2344 days ago
  • LADYBUG1107
    Way to go!
    2345 days ago
    Great job!! emoticon
    2345 days ago
    I love your sprint triathalon goal...One per month!! Keep it up!

    That would be "12 in 2012!"

    You could make a shirt with that on it. Wear it during every one of them. It could be the team name and goal all in one. I can't do one this month or next but...if I get my *ss in gear I could squeeze all of them in anyways. It would just take some creative planning on my part.

    2346 days ago
  • JULIA1154
    Way to go, Jenn. And maybe my pedometer's off but it took me 58 minutes to jog a 5k, on the treadmill, so your time seems pretty good to me.
    2347 days ago
    Great job!!

    Our community center is hosting an "IronMan in a Month" contest in February--complete an Ironman (26.2 miles of running, 112 miles biking, and 2.5 miles swimming) over the course of Febrary! Wanna join me? :)
    2347 days ago
  • VBA0731
    Way to Go!
    2347 days ago
    Hmmmm... I belong to a gym with a pool so this is totally doable. I don't swim but I could "run" back and forth for 750 meters in the pool (it's only 4 1/2 ft deep). I think you've infected me with crazy. emoticon
    2347 days ago
    I'm another non-biker, so you're not alone. I was heavily into swimming as a kid and I've become a decent runner, but I haven't owned a bike in ages and my little gnome legs hate the stationary bikes at the gym.

    I love this - a sprint gym triathlon was actually the first challenge I set for myself back when I started, and I had a huge sense of accomplishment when I finished. I was actually doing them once a week for a while there before I gave up on our not-so-great pool. I may have to switch things up and do it again.
    2347 days ago
    Nice job! I am really contemplating trying a sprint tri, and you really motivated me to do just that! A blog I often read had some more information on training for triathlons. It's at if you want more info. She talked about a couple of things you mentioned above - how your legs feel from biking to running and being hungry during the running portion. Congrats again!
    2347 days ago
    Tri's are AWESOME! Outdoor ones are much more fun than indoor, IMHO. Consider doing a "women's tri" for your first. I did the largest women's only tri in the country (sprint distance) with a group of girlfriends and it was a blast. Every shape, every size, every age was there. When I did that tri, for the first time in my life, I felt like an athelete. Go you!
    2347 days ago
    LMAO - i love your sarcasm!!!

    can you recap the requirements of the sprint triathalon that you completed? I dont have anyplace to swim @ my office gym, but i figure i can do 2 of the 3 legs b/c we have a recumbent bike and treadmills...thanks!
    2347 days ago
    Good job!! I have so much admiration for you!! Way to go!
    2347 days ago
    Great job! I also don't quit, even if I come across the line last - which I have done in 2 road running events, and 2nd to last in two others. Someone has to be last in order to make sure everyone else finishes, right? Not quitting is a good problem to have.

    I think you did great on your tri! I am scared of the tri and spinning, for the record.
    2347 days ago
    You ROCK!!!!!


    And Imma coming over to eat your berries! Muahahahaha...

    2347 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/18/2012 11:19:02 AM
    You are my heroine!!!!!!!
    2347 days ago
    2347 days ago
  • JSC143
    Yeah!!!!! emoticon
    2347 days ago
    I just love the way your mind works!
    2348 days ago
    2348 days ago
    emoticon great post thanks
    2348 days ago
    Great post....
    2348 days ago
    way to go!
    2348 days ago
    OK - you've convinced me I can do it. Now I just need to choose a time to TRI :)
    2348 days ago
    Well done! I'm amazed at your effort!
    I believe that when you run outdoors, without a TV, you'll go faster, especially if you listen to great music.
    Your fridge looks very appealing to me!
    Have a great evening!
    2348 days ago
    Awesome job, girl! Keep it up. And yes, your outside time will be better. I was doing 5 miles in about 47 minutes inside, and adrenaline on race day made me finish in 43:16! :)

    Rock that Tri. Show it who's boss. Make it your bitch. :)

    2348 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2348 days ago
    Congrats and can't wait to hear about your next tri!!! : ) I participated in my first duathlon earlier this year and loved it-I plan on doing it again this coming August!
    2348 days ago
    Whew! Great challenge! Keep on SPARKIN'! :-)

    2348 days ago
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    2348 days ago
    Congrats for a great accomplishment!
    2348 days ago
  • KARENE10
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    2348 days ago
    Loved your blog today. I want to do a tri- but let myself get overwhelmed and anxious, thus did not sign up. I like the idea of trying it in the gym. Thanks for a good start to th day!

    Laurie emoticon
    2348 days ago
    I could only do two legs the exercise bike four 30 minutes and run 5 then walk 25. I am getting there. I hate running, have not bought a sports bra yet.

    You did so great, keep up the good work!!! emoticon emoticon
    2349 days ago
    You are awesome! Congratulations!
    2349 days ago
    Way to go!! Very impressive ~ Spark on!!
    2349 days ago
    You ROCK girl! And you always make my laugh. Spark on! :)
    2349 days ago
    Great job! I am still trying to get to that point where I am not starving when I get up in the morning! I am not a big bike fan and I am hoping to get to running a mile by the end of this year! Your blog is definitely inspiring! emoticon
    2349 days ago
  • KIPPER15
    emoticon You did it and that is inspiring. emoticon
    2349 days ago
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