Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Random Summer Tuesday

Greetings from the tail end of summer. Within one weeks time,  I will be forced to say "bye bye" to quiet city streets, empty restaurants at prime time and *always a parking space*  Boston as most know, is tightly crammed with university after university. Some just a stone's throw of each other and when September 1st hits.....
With age comes wisdom and if you happen to be here during this massive invasion as I have too many years to count,here's some of my most sacred tips on dealing with it. 

1. DO NOT.. I repeat, DO NOT step foot into a Target or  Bed Bath and Beyond because there won't be a  shower squeegy or chip clip to be found besides the fact that you will be standing in line for hours just to pay for your Bounty Jumbo 16 roll Select-a-Size on sale.  

2. AVOID at all costs small one way narrow streets and any traveling by car on Wednesday August 31 right through Sept 1st at 9pm.  Just call in sick if you must. The entire hub of Boston including Brookline, Allston, Brighton, Kenmore Square and Harvard Square will be covered with the entire fleet of U-Haul trucks  in the continental United States. 
It will take you approximately 40 minutes to inch along 2 miles darting couches and mattresses and confused bewildered, wide eyed stricken freshman parents from Waterloo, Iowa. 

3. No Cheescake Factory, No Floyd's Barber shop last minute trims, and just forget about one of those new fangled Hubway bikes just waiting for you to pedal around town with. Uh uh. All you will find is a sad skeleton-like bare rack.  Just hunker down and let the dust settle and before you know it, you'll be acclimated to all of the madness by October 1st if your lucky.

In other news, I'm preparing to race once again this coming weekend and that's all i will say about that (for now). 
My friend KT turned 45 this week and she convinced me to get up at 4:30 instead of my leisurely sleep-in (4:50 AM) so I could get to the pool early enough to cram in the extra yardage to make it 4500 this morning.  The best part? Swimming with 2 of my favorite lane mates, KT of course and BB the 12 mile Key West wonder swimmer.  We had a good time all three of us today and heck.. I'd do it again. Just say when KT!!
Peter and Marybeth Cadwell
On a bittersweet note, I lost a friend, Peter Cadwell to a heart attack August 9th while vacationing in the Boulder area with his wife and twin boys. Many in the Boston Triathlon Community knew  Pete and his wife Marybeth as  they both are from New England and still have family roots here. Pete was The Boston Triathlon Team's President for years  before they left New England for San Francisco. I tried to help Pete as much as i could with team stuff and I adopted his cat before they moved out to the west coast. Shortly after they left, Boston Triathlon Team just didn't have the same flair for me anymore with the two of them gone. It was the main reason why I left the team shortly after they made their way to the west coast. Pete possessed the most incredible ability to touch, befriend, be an amazing role model,  mentor, athlete, husband and father to twin boys now age 3.  My heart breaks for Marybeth and the world she must now face without her true soul mate and their 2 young boys who will struggle to remember their father only through images as they grow.  I feel very fortunate that I am one of the many who knew Pete and witnessed his genuine spirit of life and of  truly living it to it's fullest.
I will miss ya Pete....

Monday, August 8, 2011

Gloucester Fisherman's Triathlon

I think I qualify for The Black Fruit Fly Infested Fruit Bowl, Fuzzy Molded Cheddar Cheese, Curdled Coffee Creamer award for the BEST NON UPDATED, COBWEB FILLED BLOG FOR SUMMER 2011. Yay!


No excuses here. Life is like one of those extinct merry-go-rounds you used to find in the playgrounds. You'd wind that thing up running like mad to keep up with it WITHOUT falling and sliding underneath. Remember those??? Ha!

That's my summer! Whirlwind. Tooo fast. Summer goes WAY too fast

So what have I been up to?
No racing since my last post (until yesterday, Sunday August 7th)
Yup, another Sprint in the books.  The Gloucester Fisherman's Triathlon to be exact.  A New England race through and through.  I love Gloucester. It's a quintessential New England  seaside town. Harbors, beaches, inlets. Lots of coastline including one thing I just LOVE: The sound of the foghorn you can hear in the harbor. It's almost soothing. There is nothing like the smell of salty ocean air combined with a foghorn.  Today especially as it was a windswept rainy day for racing.
The hardest part about racing in wet conditions isn't about racing in wet conditions. It's exiting your car with your nice clean dry gear and getting drenched before you are even in transition. It's trying to put on a wetsuit with wet skin,  and trying to stay warm before your wave ( mine being the LAST one) goes off.
Because of moderate to heavy chop, the swim was shortened. BFB (big fat bummer) It was over before I knew it and I managed to exit the water up front in my wave of all women 40 and over. I love swimming in salt water and I felt good. Smooth and strong.
On to the bike.
 I rode  somewhat conservatively in the rainy wet conditions.  The bike course was filled by the time I got out there and  all I could seem to focus on is the debacle of  my friend Dede and all that she is going through right now from falling  on the bike course on wet cobblestones at Ironman Germany 2 weeks ago. She is appropriately named, Humpty (her doing) and you can read here about her accident and how her 2011 season has come to a screeching halt. No worries though, Dede is already on the comeback trail and unbelievably resilient. Truly inspiring.

Anyway, I wove my way through the wet and rainy 2 loop 15 mile course riding as hard as I was willing and quite honestly able. By the second loop, my quads had that familiar burn so I knew I was working. I was passed by one woman in our "caboose" wave, Nancy A, who flew by me like I was standing still.

Always happy to rack the bike, off for the run I went.  It's the same scenario as I start out on the run course.  I get that dreaded feeling that soon I will be mowed down.  The run is NOT my strength at the moment and I feel like a green gill, one fin fish swimming sideways just waiting to become dinner on the higher food chain.  The new run course was hilly. Joy! Much more than the last race  I did  and the only thing that saved me from blowing up was the misty overcast skies. By mile 2, my face felt hot and I was uncoiling RAPIDLY. I gave it everything I had. So much that  I had NOTHING coming in view of that finish line.  NOT A THING. If 5 women were there to pass me, I wouldn't have cared at that point. I was COOKED.  At a SPRINT  for god's sake??? YES!!! Everyone has something left for that last 200 yards right?  Oh no, I did not and I was thrilled I made it through the 2 loop, 3.1 mile course with only one other woman catching me from my wave and she was not in my age group. (phew) I was SHOCKED.  I figured there would be at least one  uber runner in the food chain to nail me in my age group, but not yesterday Lucky me. :-)

I do realize luck doesn't get one very far and I have a plan this fall:. Work on my  shuffle (speed wise) that clearly  needs some sharping. I have not put the time in for fear of doing too much and getting injured again but as the summer progresses, and I slowly become stronger, I will hopefully progress. A girl can dream, right?
Big cheers to my most awesome Team Psycho teammates  who attended and raced picking up lots of hardware or  who came to set up 2 tents in the horrible weather supplying us with chilly cold Harpoon, and burgers and dogs post race. Rain or not it was EPIC!