Tag Archives: Slow Old Fat Triathlete

Into the home stretch

Been rolling my sore muscles a lot with still more lower back and knee discomfort than I am happy with and sleeping a lot more but not as well.  Wet weather and high pollution counts are not an old lungs friend, those I can’t change. My diet and workout routine however are within my control, and I need to change something or I will manage to steal failure right form the jaws of success.

Up late this morning (meaning 5:30 instead of 4 AM) so no running or biking this morning but re-introducing discipline to my eating to reduce my chronic inflammation. I believe inside every excuse is an answer just waiting to get out when the goal is important enough. I fed my processed salty foods and refined sugar addiction at my birthday and haven’t really gotten back to basics since. One month of too much sugar, salt, gluten and hidden dairy CAN definitely increase my sluggishness and my pain.

Breakfast this morning

1/2 cup fresh cut cantaloupe, 1/2 cup frozen mixed berries, 1 scoop nonGMO soy protien, 12 oz water.

Coffee with honey and organic vanilla soy milk


Lunch Packed

2 cup frozen green beans, 2 c spinach, 1 cup each cut carrots, zucchini, apple. Have my Bragg’s to spray on for dressing and a couple Tb of dried cranberries and flaked coconut for texture.

Lots of food. But I am gone for 12 hours with dropping records and commute.

Plan to swim at least tonight, maybe bike. But now time to go drive for 45 then be a nurse for 10 hours! This is the home stretch and I know I can do it!

Ice, Ice Baby!

June 1, 2011. I couldn’t run a block. I had never ridden a bicycle or had a swimming lesson. June 1st was day one of this journey I am on, my goal was to try something ego challenging, that required effort and discipline and it had to be something fun and  completely different.

Anything athletic was about as different as I could get from my bookish existence. Also, and not surprisingly,  I was and am a BIG girl. Big girls still got game, I call my style of game, ” SOFT” (Slow Old Fat Try-athlete).

This pre-amble is to put in perspective my yesterday.  I swam 100 meters; four lengths together without break. I was panting and gasping when I was done but I did it.  Then I swam another 200 meters in lengths of 25; when I was done swimming I biked about 5 miles, and walked 5K. I am also trimming down, weighed in yesterday at 217 lbs. Not that the point was to be thin, but every ten pounds I lose is ten pounds I don’t have to drag through the water or around the track.

This morning I ran 1 mile, walked 2 more. Tomorrow after work I will go bike and swim.

I am tired and sweaty a lot.

I am also currently icing my back daily and rolling, rolling, rolling my legs and butt. I have a healing blister between my cheeks, ache places that never ached before and a very funky tan line but still am sooooo excited by my progress and that I am still engaged in an activity I have been told (and for years even told myself) just wasn’t for me.

So what’s my goal, well my dream goal is an open water/trail run triath event in an exotic local, but since I am still an EXTREME novice, Athena novice at that, below is the website description of the first event that all this swimming, running and biking is about. I will be doing the MINI ADULT. Not a bad beginning length. I will be in the Athena category and have no idea how many will be in my age group. I am not as much interested in taking home a ribbon as I am in actually completing the race. My DIL is a bit more competitive and I hope to see her take first in her group.

If I continue to practice, practice, practice I know I can complete the lengths needed. Now I am all nervous about transitions and set up and what to wear and eat. Gonna reread the book by Jayne Williams and just keep swimming…

By the way, anyone who wants to come participate in the race or cheer me and Dawn on, let me know, I say for this kind of thing…the more the merrier!!!!

I know I haven’t finished it yet, but I am farther than I could ever have believed possible a year ago. I wouldn’t have come this far without Phil Veatch, my trainer from Inspire Fitness;  the massage and adjustments from Backfit Chiropractic (Anne, Dr. Vogel, and Jacquie);  bike riding lessons and poolside encouragement from my local sons Rick and Dallon and my DIL Dawn; the special contribution of Steve and Jody; and of course my friends Pat, Sara, Anne, Angela and Amie who keep encouraging, clothing and believing in me regardless of what crazy thing I try now. (Also a small thank-you to James Owen and Wil Wheaton, not that they will read this, but it is there amazing writing I listen to when running, stretching and walking. Like Oprah and Glinda the Good Witch these two men keep me motivated and believing that I have always had the power.)


Brief Description

Tri-Family Racing presents The City of Mesa Halloween Adult & Youth Sprint Triathlon & Duathlon. Everyone can get in on the fun; …we have Youth & Adult divisions as well as Relay Team competitions.

Event Refund Policy

No refunds provided!

Additional Information

MINI ADULT TRI: Adults: 200 yd. Swim, 8 mi Bike, 1/2 mi Run
MAXI ADULT TRI: 400 yd. swim, 12 mi Bike, 2 mi Run
YOUTH (TRI ONLY): 100 yd. Swim, 2.5 mi Bike; 1/2 mi Run
MAXI DU: Adults: 1/2 mi. Run, 12 mi. bike, 2 mi Run

WHERE: Fremont Pool, 1001 N Power Road, Mesa ,AZ 85205 (Northeast corner of East Adobe Street & North Power Road)

WHEN: Youth triathlon approx. 7 am Adult Triathlon & Duathlon starts at 7:45am. ALL TRI-ENTRANTS MUST HAVE THEIR BIKES IN THE TRANSITION AREA NO LATER THAN 6:45 AM

AWARDS: Five deep in all Age & Relay team categories. All youth also receive a participant ribbon.

REGISTRATION: Registration Packet pick-up on Saturday October 29th is HIGHLY recommended, Registration packets and late registration will be available at Iron Gear Sports, 6655 E. McDowell road, Mesa, AZ 85215 (480) 396-4766 from 1pm to 5pm. (Suite 103, southwest corner of Power and McDowell)

MINI ADULT TRI: $67 postmarked before October 15th $77 thereafter.
MAXI ADULT TRI or MAXI DU: $72 post marked before October 15th, $82 thereafter.
TRI RELAY TEAMS: $140 postmarked before October 15th $150 thereafter.
Youth Race TRI ONLY: $47 postmarked before October 15th $52 thereafter


Children’s Race Age divisions: 7-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14 yrs old (TRI ONLY)
Individual Male and Female: 15-19, 20-24; 25-29; 30-34; 35-39; 40-44; 45-49; 50-54; 55-59; 60-64; 65-69; 70+, Athena – Females 150+ lbs — Clydesdale – Males – 200+ lbs,
Relay divisions: Coed, All Female, All Male.

SPONSORS: Iron Gear Sports, Landis Cyclery, Adobe Images, Carlos O’Brien’s, M & J Trophies, Triple Sports., Hammer Gel, Adobe Graphics, Coffee’s of Hawaii, Tri-Family Racing,: Over $750.00 in merchandise, WOW !!!!!


USA Triathlon is the national governing body for the sports of triathlon, duathlon, winter triathlon and aquathlon in the United States. Participation in a USAT sanctioned event means the event director has the proper permits in place, liability and athlete excess medical insurance coverage and the event plan has met the standard of organization required. USA Triathlon provides rules, guidance and governance to set the standard for safe and fair multi-sport races. For more information on USA Triathlon and fueling the multi-sport lifestyle, visit our website at http://www.usatriathlon.org.

Eight weeks and counting…..

Eight weeks from my first event and there are so many things i find myself wondering about like how to set up for transitions and what the protocals are for race day.

I also find myself wondering if I will set a new record for longest time evar!

However I am less likely to worry these days if I will even finish. Not that I don’t have a loooooong way to go.

My longest bike ride to date was last Tuesday to the pool and back, this Sprint is 8 miles.  Also, although I am making laps in the pool instead of lengths these days, I need to do that four times CONSECUTIVELY, without breaks!

Definitely in the part of training where it is more about discipline for me than motivation.  With that said I need to go to sleep now because I have to get in my morning run before work tomorrow and then go swim again tomorrow night.

Slow and steady wins the race…and by that I mean finishes the race….

Moving through the middle of things. (written aug 17th)

“Education is the great engine of personal development. It is what we make of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.”  Nelson Mandela in Long Walk to Freedom

My top two favorite consumer activities are eating delicious food and  acquiring new knowledge.  I have spent the last week celebrating my birthday and indulging my consumer. I have eaten well, and read four books.

Today, being the 17th, is officially the last day of my birthday week, time to blog, re-focus on contribution and compassion and basically re-enter the mundane world. I am easing myself back into my routines physically, psychologically and spiritually.

This past week, I have eaten without respect to calorie count but only in relation to joy and taste; I have not maintained any regular triathlon training schedule but was hardly a couch potato either; and I have spent a lot of time writing in a journal not just reading paper books

So, what have I actually consumed and what have I learned this week….

First what I consumed….

My week of food began Wednesday morning, my actual birthday, with coffee and a vegan fudge cupcake at The Coffee Shop, this was as close to an actual birthday cake as I would get, no candles or singing this birthday, but the moist cocoa flavor and the rich buttery feel of the frosting in my mouth (how they do this vegan I do not know) is a whole party in itself.  I then had fried pickles and rhubarb pie in Black Canyon on our way to Sedona which was also a tasty food highlight. The next and final great gastronomic highlight of Birthday week was brunch at Shugrue’s Hillside Grill just before heading down the mountains to the valley. The service, the vegetarian options and the view were the awesome sauce on an already awesome meal. In between all the eating out and refined sugar intake were some lovely salads and protein and nutrient rich grains prepared in the room by my friends.

My mouth and tummy were well taken care of this birthday week and what I learned from my fuel intake was that I do still love my frosting and I still truly love eating the rainbow,  that fresh fruits and vegetables provide me. I did however gain three pounds while studying.

However, I also dropped nine pounds of actual body fat, due to building all new muscle groups through hiking. It wasn’t just about reading. No couch potato here, I hiked the Brewer trail three mornings in a row.

Each time up and down the trail I learned and saw something new and different.  It was like rereading a book. The first time through it is all about getting to the end, but the second or third time I slow down and appreciate the poetry of the words, the intricacies of the character development, I savor nuances that tell me this story was written by say Mr. Vonnegut instead Ms. Atwood.  The first hike was all about getting to the top and the grand vistas, the second and third although they included the meditation and exultation at the top they were  also chances to notice the flowers and the trees and a hundred little details along the path.

The middles of the second and third hikes were about the beauty of the details but they were also about continuing to put one muscle tired foot in front of the next, over and over and over again. Like every single journey, each hike was also about stamina and persistence.

I have always had a problem with middles, from what I observe maybe we all do, but what I know for sure is that I do. I often want to quit in the middle.

Once in the middle of labor, during the actual delivery of my son Wil (who, for the record, was over 11 pounds), I officially quit. I lay back on the delivery table and told my husband I wasn’t pushing anymore, that I was tired, and since he seemed to know what I should be doing, HE could just get up there and have this baby. I was done pushing.

Luckily my husband didn’t argue with me, he just said, “Okay honey, you can quit. You are tired, but before you do you, just give it one more push like the doctor asked and then I will get up there on the table and do it.”

“OK,” I said in tearful exhaustion, “One more push.” On the next contraction I bent forward and pushed really hard one more time and finally after ten and a half months of pregnancy, 46 hours of labor followed by six hours of what seemed fruitless pushing the head of our son emerged. I will never forget that moment.

Bill and I both were crying as the rest of the baby emerged and he kept patting my hand and saying, “See, you just needed one more push.”

I have no talent for these physical things I love to eat and I love to read, I am talented with words and food and sedentary mind-based activities. I do mostly like running, hiking, swimming and soon I hope I will like biking, but I have no natural talent nor the build for these things. That is why I call myself a SOFT athlete. Slow Old Fat Try Athlete, because for me its not about talent it is about continuing to try.

I understand about middles, but these hikes helped remind me. So that is why today, even though I am exhausted and discouraged and still can’t ride a bike. I am not about to quit my triathlon just before the miracle happens.

P.S. I forgot this blog in drafts where I left it for edits one day and I am finally publishing two weeks later after the miracle happened and I finally rode my bike. Still have a bit of the case of the “middles”, you know, that place where motivation is slim and discipline needs to pick up the slack.  Beginnings have a thrill all their own, endings are triumph or relief, middles are and always will be about showing up and allowing for the miracle to finally happen.


Just a short one….after all size ain’t everything

Good Morning Friends,

It is almost time to shower and dress for day three at my Gold Canyon patient’s house so this entry will be brief. I an sad to report that my training is still in a semi stasis mode. I have not been swimming since my class on Thursday. Saturday night was chock full of thunderstorms.   I was all set up to go straight from work on Friday when suddenly another dog happened to me.

I am a small (not tiny) to medium size dog lover, think English Springer Spaniels and of course Lhasa Apso’s. Still I adopted Cozi, a ginormous Golden retriever who clearly has a canine sidekick personality, about 3 months ago. He had lived the first five years of his life with a yellow lab named Yeager who had already found a different home when I kept Cozi from Doggy Doom. Cozi was clearly depressed when I first brought him home and had just begun to really bond with my old Lhasa, Noien ,when her CHF suddenly got much worse. Her activity dropped to very little and then she passed away a week ago Tuesday.

Cozi’s bruised heart got battered a little more. He had just begun to show signs of getting his mojo back during walks this week but the last six months have clearly been one heart wrenching loss after another for this Golden and he is mostly heart, as all who have met him can clearly see, and I wondered what it would take to make his a whole one again. which leads to why this week I seem to be making more excuses than swim practices.

Friday while I was at work, Yeager’s adoptive family decided that their home wasn’t a good fit after all and Yeager, the dog Cozi grew up with, was headed to the pound.  The family I work for is at 4 dogs themselves (legal limit without special licensing) and could not keep him. I believe everyone and everything deserves my compassion and this means action on my part, not just pretty words.  So, I brought him home with me Friday with the stated intent of trying to find another owner.  Even as I packed his accouterments into my vehicle, my logical brain was screaming that I just don’t have the resources to help yet one more thing, listing the “needs” I currently can’t afford, and laying on the guilt about not making it to the pool to swim. My heart has always been louder than my head.

That initial plan went right out the window when Yeager came through the front door. Two 120+ pound dpgs dropped to the floor touching noses and licking each others faces and talking in the excited whiny voice they save for very emotional moments. This went on for about 3 to 4 minutes before they finally bounded up and started the usual butt sniffing bouncy dog greetings, which then adjourned to the back yard for that boy bonding rough housing that is an inter-species trait.

Watching the two dogs reunited made me tear up they were so expressive in the joy of seeing each other and the pain the separation had caused them. It is clear that these two canine compadres are soulmates. As of this moment,  I cannot conceive of separating these two again, and one of the cool things about compassion is when something is so clearly right, the way is made.

So that is why I haven’t been swimming yet.  The Lab would have been in my car for the hour I trained which is VERY unacceptable at the best of times but deadly in AZ in July. He is also currently affecting my run training as well just for good measure.

The Golden Retriever, Cozi, is SOFT like me and easy to run with, but the new kid, the Yellow Lab Yeager, is energetic and needs leash training BADLY so my 5k in the morning has been reduced to a mile run with the Golden and 15 minutes of walks and stops as the yellow lab learns what a leash is.

Plan to do C25K training starting August 14th as day one, by then both dogs should be OK on the leash and can get their exercise (alternately, not at same time) with me. Minimum pool practices I allow myself are three a week plus class and will get those in somehow, just not sure how yet.

As to the bike…..one piece of the whale at a time…

Namaste all and Happy Birthday to my son Wil who lives the farthest away but is always close in my thoughts and heart!

And Yup, he spelled it that way before Wheaton…LOL

Welcome to my new roost and rookery…

Welcome readers. I hope you have followed me from my LiveJournal nest to join this new roost. Roosts and rookeries  are the communities in which Corvus corvidae gather once the actual breeding and brooding of the eggs is completed for the season. Crows are self-aware, socially benevolent scavengers who find beauty and sustenance in homo-sapien’s  trash and actively build community.

Those are the goals of this website, to actively build a community of fellows where we encourage self-awareness, social benevolence, beauty in the unexpected, sustenance in what we once would have considered the “garbage” of our lives. I am finally using Crowfae.com as my primary blog site even though it means a little more stretching again and I kinda feel drawn tight already. My inability to blog all week due to problems with my LiveJournal (or more likely all LiveJournal accounts) was the impetus to move here to this more community friendly location now the eggs have hatched and the pinfeathers are dry and growing, but it is a move I have wished to make since my son first gifted me with it.

I promise a real blog in the next 48 hours with updates (however embarrassing) on my last week of training, this months meeting of my literary ladies circle and how this first first week without my constant canine companion (may she rest in peace) has been. Until then treat yourself and others with kindness and patience and pass out a few unexpected smiles.