Sunday, June 28, 2009

SD International

Surprise! I got to race today :) Having watched this race two years ago, I was really bumming about just sidelining it again. That would be the third race this year where I would be playing cheerleader- so over that.
Yesterday I rolled out early with my coach to ride through camp Pendelton and halfway to San Clemente and back, for 3.5hrs- a moderate ride finishing up 3 weeks of some solid, injury free training! I had to be back early to take my brother to the shop and get his race wheels on, drop his bike off at packet pick up, etc. It was a great ride where my knee was once again super cooperative and I casually mentioned to KP "hey, wouldn't it be cool if I could race and just finish this block off with some speedwork of whatever I can muster right now?" When he said, "yea not such a bad idea if you really feel your knee wouldn't be setback", I immediately began plotting....hehehehe. Long story short, I was lucky enough to get my chance to race :D

The day played out great. My brother and I arrived with just enough time to set up, and get in a 10min w/up swim. I would normally jog for warm up but the less I pound on that knee before a race, the better.

The swim was pretty good. I stuck where I wanted to be until the third boey and then
"bye-bye fast swimmer people" (or just those that can suck it up more in the water). Got out not last, thankfully. The bike actually felt pretty good. By the time we climbed up and began the looped section, which is really cool by the way, I let the reigns go a bit and pushed as I knew the knee was not going to be giving me problems on the bike :)!!

The run went awesome, I felt good. Legs were heavy as expected, but I ticked off the first two miles in low 13. All went good until mile 4 where my knee started to hint that it was getting pissed, but nonetheless I finished just fine.
OMG I am so so so happy to have finished a race feeling strong. What a perfect end to the week(s).

I raced pro wave and came in 5th (out of 6, ha). But who cares, this was an awesome race for me with what I've accumulated since Honu. Why did I race pro if I would have won my age group by a large margin (as some people love to inquire)?

1) I'm trying to go pro. 2) I look forward to more challenging competition. 3) There's nothing that I need more than to get my a** kicked into gear 4) I have years to see my peak and one of the best pieces of advice I got from Gordo in AZ was to give myself the opportunity to race the best, get crushed, and learn to be humbled.

I think the greatest difference between age groupers and pros, which has still been one of my problems this year (as my inpatience leading to injury proves), is that you cannot possibly peak/feel stellar/expect to win at every race. An athlete whose advice I highly value once told me that at least once I should know what it's like to be decreased to a walk on the run and have practucally the entire field pass you, because only then will you get rid of the stupid pride that you always have to be shining like a freakin star.

Pros know who they are, what they have done, and are capable of, and go into the majority of races not in optimal form, but willing to compete with every ounce of effort. It'd be lovely to taper for every event to be 'oh so cool', but that teaches us nothing about what we're capable of enduring.

I am thankful beyond words for Honu and every other race between now and October that will serve no purpose other than to allow me to do what I love more than anything else which is racing, and get me faster for the one and ONLY AAAAA race- KONA.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

My New Race Kit!!!

Many thanks to Kristin Mayer- Betty Designs- for designing it so awesomely :D
I can't wait to race in it! The first time will be at Carlsbad Sprint.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Don't want to jinx it, but...

I'm sooo excited that today marks 2 weeks of solid training with practically zero knee problems. I say "practically" because a few times running or cycling I'll feel it but nothing to hinder my training. I love the feeling of rollinig through a heavy training block! Next week will be another big week and then stepping it down a bit so I can go into Carlsbad ready to finally GO in a race. I just need a good race sometime before Kona- last one was Surf City Half....waaaay back in February.
It's been helpful to have my brother here because his constant "When is swimming? Can we swim again? Lets go run! Lets go ride! You're soooo slow!! C'mmon pick it up!!" portrays a miniature (and slightly annoying) coach that's with me 24/7. He's been loving it here which I'm obviously super happy about. I had him try a club swim program as it's slightly longer practice than masters and with kids his age but he didn't like it too much (kind of overcrowded and not much coach-attention). So he'll be sticking with masters. I had a kick out of watching him jump into lane 1 and totally cruise it when 2 years ago I would lap him in a pool and I might never ever be able to swim in that damn lane :( hehe, ahhh the ease of adaptation/learning in youth. Oh to be little again.
He met a cool guy at swim who's son is his age and they run XC Mon & Thurs at Rancho or Moonlight Beach. He went this past Thurs and really enjoyed it so it's good for him to have some guys to run with. I'm definitely not able to sprint his jog so will not even attempt.
On another exciting note, Daniel will be racing San Diego International next weekend in the Pro wave! How cool is that? See, that's why I freakin' love our sport- where else would a 15yr old amateur get to race his idols? It's like me getting to play a match against Hingis when I was in High School. Badass!!
So since I won't be racing 1) didn't sign up on time 2) too much $$ 3) not quite ready to lay it down with my knee in an Oly..........I'll be spectating him and some other friends. Now that I'm healthy, I can cheer without jealousy :)
So that's about all that's been going on, I really have zero outside "entertainment" which is awesome (to me at least). Yesterday I rolled 4hrs with Kristin, Colleen, and Beth on some 'ghetto'-Kristin called it that not me- version of the old 395 loop I hadn't done since 2007 and that turned out to be a fun solid ride.
Today I hae a 1hr run which I'll do on the coast trails as my brother hasn't seen those yet- hope he understands/listens to my instructions....and then mid morning masters.
I'm looking forward to tracking IM CDA today as well, best of luck to Julie D!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

This one hit home

Yesterday my coach gave me a book to read "Gold in the Water" by P.H. Mullen. I started it last night and just a few pages into the intro, a phrase caught me by the heart and I uncontrollably shed a few tears....

"Their passionate quest is the greatest singular goal in individual sports. It is a hard and solitary journey. But it is also noble. It is noble because one of the most important things to do in life is at least once chase a dream with every ounce of power and conviction we can muster".


Friday, June 12, 2009

2 days till my brother comes!

This week has been rolling awesome. I'm back to feeling close to fit, and running is going super. Swimming is the only thing that I guess my body rebelled against after all the pool visits it got in May thanks to my injury.
Yesterday I went 3hrs on the bike feeling the best I've felt since early April, which is saying a lot! Tomorrow will be another 3-4, possibly with KP and I just cannot get enough of being back out on the roads of N. County :)

My bro gets in Sunday....YAY!! I've registered us for Carslbad Sprint, where he says he will "eat me alive". Haha, probably, but as well he should, right?! It will be great to race almost every weekend July to August. Right now I know for sure it's Carlsbad and Strawberry Fields- Oly for me.

On the home front, my furniture has yet to arrive!! WTF? Murphy's Law they'll come Saturday which will mean I'll be out training through the early afternoon causing a delivery problem. I really wish they could just come today. Since I haven't had all of the moving to organize, I've been keeping busy with my LSAT studies and going through all of the Hills episodes I never saw.

Saturday, June 6, 2009


I think I jinxed myself with my last post. Today was a mix of pain #1 and 3, actually more like the positive pain #3. I went out with my coach and Jaakko on what was supposed to be a 3ish hr easy to steady ride. We took the bike path from Oceanside inland to 76 and rode the loop around Olive Hill and back. Well, my excitement of being back on the saddle pain free led me to not be able to wait until 8am and hit the road at 6. I rolled out down to La Costa and down PCH to Honey's Bakery to grab a coffee. After browsing the boring local paper, I got back on the bike and still had another hr to kill before 8. So I continued easy along the coast until making it to Oceanside. The ride turned out to be mod-hard in some parts and total for the day I clocked 5hrs- OOPS! Uhhm, either not doing this length of a ride in 1+months or the fact that I raced Honu last week resulted in me feeling like SHIT after haha.
Anyways, at 4:50 I had the choice of continuing up to Leucadia st and home or stopping at the health store for salty lunch. The latter sounded more than awesome, so I did just that. Then I continued sitting there for about an hr and a half before finally getting back on the last 10min uphill home.
Got home, showered, ate again, drank some raw veggies and took a nap. I still feel like my legs are crumbling to pieces and I could not rescue a goldfish that fell out of his tiny bowl (and I'm also delirious and coming up with stupid jokes/analogies).
So I think I need to recover.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

3 Kinds of Pain

1) The greatest kind- where you're fit and in great training rythm. This type of pain can come through a hard session, or during racing where it hurts but hurts oh so good. You're just tired and digging so deep but getting huge gratification at the same time. It's more a fun-twisted mental struggle. Everything hurts but that's the reason you love sport.

2) The first of the two bad pains. It comes as a result of injury. This is the pain you experience when something is screaming to stop, not from fatigue but simply because it's hurt.

3) The second of the two bad pains. This one sucks worse than injury because you have to choose to submit yourself to this awful humbling pain. It can only be good if done in training while seeking higher fitness. In that case it's the precursor of pain #1. It comes when you're out of shape and trying to do something that your body feels so inept at. Think fat lazy kid in PE class. If your stubborn, like me, you'll put yourself through this kind of pain in a race and suffer the consequences of feeling like you really should bail or not have shown up at all.

That's my little school of thought for the day.

Back in San Diego...

I don't know how but suddenly I just moved, it all happened Wednesday by 10am, pretty efficient :) I did a little run and gym session that day with a major nap in between. Then finished off the day with Gavyn's baseball game where they totally killed and made it to Championships!

Today I swam masters for just 30mins then got in a great run mid morning on the trails and followed that with a ride up to Oceanside and back with Jakko- he's roughyl my age, from Finland and staying with a friend from masters, Beth, for a couple weeks to train. They were all at Hawaii 70.3 so we met then. It's cool to meet people my age that are as crazy for this sport as I am.

Anyway, after that I took a nap and just got back from massage. Lovely!

Tomorrow's going to be fun as a reporter for the Latin TV station Univision is coming down from L.A. to interview me. Pretty sweet :)

I'm still waiting for the moving van as right now my apartment is quite blank. That should get here early next week at the latest (hopefully) and then my bro gets here next Sunday! Yippee :)

Training is rolling this week. All easy short stuff just to keep moving and make sure the knee is solid. So far so good.

Well that's the short scoop.