Because the important moments in life just don’t fit in a status update! I started this blog when I was training for my first ½ Ironman, (70.3 miles) to record what I hoped would be growth and progress but ended up being a huge learning experience. Although fitness is one of the key ingredients to a happy life, it certainly isn't the only ingredient. My blog has evolved to document growth, progress and setbacks in other areas too. From my surprise proposal in Rome and wedding in the fall of 2013, to Mom's devastating stage IV cancer diagnosis and death 2 weeks after I found out I was pregnant. Who knows what shape it will take, but thanks for being along for the ride.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Q & A

Well, I still need to blog about how race day went, and how I ended up with 69.1 instead of the full 70.3. But, this has been a hectic week, and we had our first track meet yesterday so I was at work until 6pm...so, we'll just blame it on that. In the mean time, here's some questions I answered for a UCI student who is working on a script that includes a triathlete, and needed to interview someone that the character was based on. 



-Do you train in a group, by yourself, or with a trainer? Why?
I train with a group whenever possible, because it is less boring! When you're out there on a long run or ride, talking to someone helps the miles pass so much quicker! Even the best playlist or audio book doesn't compare to being able to talk to someone else. Sometimes, it's just knowing that they too want to stop and knowing that you can't let each other down. Sometimes, it helps motivating them to keep going, even when you don't want to! I try and plan all of my long runs with someone, and do them alone if I have to. I do some rides with other cyclists - we meet @ surf city cylcery on Sunday morning and go down PCH & up Newport Coast Drive. I don't ride in traffic unless I'm with other riders because you're safer in a group. When I ride solo I do the back bay trail or santa ana river trail because there's no traffic.

-Do you have any pre-race rituals or superstitions?
Rituals yes, superstitions, no. I always take sleeping pills 2 nights before the race! I get so nervous and excited I cannot sleep if I don't, especially if it's a destination race because I'm in unfamiliar surroundings. I also always have a good, big carbohydrate rich meal. I lay out all of my gear the night before.

-Can you tell me a story about a time during a race where you felt discouraged and what you did to overcome it?
I remember my first marathon, when I was at mile 20 and so happy that I 'only had 6 miles left' My next thought was 'oh, that's another HOUR of running!' I thought of how I was trained and had to tell myself I could do it, even though I didn't feel like it. Also, during this 1/2 ironman....I was extremely defeated after not completing the swim portion. Half way into the run, I thought of ending it early, because I hadn't completed the swim. The course was out & back and then out and back again! So, after 6 miles I was at the finsh, and had to head back out! I didn't want to. But, in times like that I think of all the people who know I'm doing it, and how I don't want to tell them I didn't finish! I ask to myself 'Do I want to keep going? No! Am I going to keep going? Yes!'

-What is your most memorable moment from a race?
Wow...so many to choose from. Usually, crossing the finish and seeing my friends or family. Or, during the run, seeing someone with only one leg (LA marathon) or, someone who is a senior citizen trucking along inspires me. Then there was the time that I drove to Vegas, forgot me special 'do not forget bag' with ALL of my gear, and only realized I left it at home in Redlands at 8pm the night before. I called my dad, who went to my apartment, picked up my bag and then we drove all night, meeting in Calico so I could get my stuff. And, I did the marathon!

-Do you find it hard to dedicate enough time to training? Does it compete
with other parts of your life?
Yes! I did 4 marathons while I was in graduate school and working full time! But, I could easily waste the same amount of time watching tv each night. Rather than compete with other areas of my life, it enhances them. I'm a better counselor, daughter, sister and friend because I train. It keeps me out of trouble! :)

-How do you manage your nerves before a race? Has pre-race excitement ever made you sick?
Ummm...sleeping pills! Ha! I still always get nervous. I've never been sick from it. I guess, in retrospect I like it. Makes me feel like a kid again.

 -Are most of your friends marathoners or triathletes as well? Or is that a separate part of your life?
I have two groups of friends - those who do endurance training and those who don't. It's easy to form a connection with a fellow marathoner quickly, because you have that common ground. I have some good friends that I met in a running group (Loma Linda Lopers, when I lived in Redlands) who I travel with to races. We did anchorage Alaska a few years ago, and are doing Missoula Montana in July. Communication is sporadic in between races, and we catch up and reconnect for the week surrounding the trip, sharing a hotel room, meals and stories.

-Is there anyone or anything in particular that inspires you to race?
Getting the most out of life. I never feel as alive as I do when in training. I feel like we've got one shot at it, as far as we know, and we might as well make the most of it. I will continue to complete marathons, and now triathlons, as long as I live.

 -Is there one part you excel at most in the triathlon (i.e.: swimming,
cycling, running) or one you must train harder for than the others?
Running! Swimming is one of the hardest things I have done, and I need to devote more time at it. In the 1/2 ironman, I feel behind in the bike because I'm new to that as well. Also, we had a lot of downhills and once I realized I was going 25mph I braked. But on the run, I passed a lot of people who had passed me on the bike. Swimming is intimidating, because I'm used to swimming in a pool where I have the safety net of the wall. Being in the open water is scary, and I need to practice that more.

 -Do you enjoy the competitive part of racing or do you prefer it for the
exercise?
Mostly, for exercise. But, during a race it helps to pick someone out, and try to stay with them or even pass them. I can be competitive when I know the person racing, like when I set the goal of beating both of my administrators in a recent 5K. I'm more competitive with myself, always hoping for a PR.

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