Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Your Appearance

"Mazimizing Success Through People" was the topic of my project management class the past two days and I learned quite a bit that I would like to share but it's 10pm and I have to get up early tomorrow for a "Contracting Resources" class. Main lesson: I need to network more. Connections with people are so valuable to success, I can't hide behind my computer at work and think that it's enough to just get the job done.

Before I go to sleep: one tidbit from class that I really agree with... your appearance says a lot about you in a work environment and you need to dress appropriately. People in Oregon (in general) have a real challenge in this area and like to wear old jeans to work, socks with sandals, and have bad hair. You heard me, bad hair! I've read articles about people coming to do business here and not getting the culture, having to wear a suit to work here is akin to going to hell. It's a different way of thinking and I'm getting away from it. I want people to perceive me as a professional who knows what they're doing. I don't want people to look at me and think I look like I'm ready for a round of disc golf. Dude. It has taken some effort to turn my overly casual wardrobe wearing boat around but my work place isn't a coffee shop and I'm not looking to pick up so I'm getting it together. Deep stuff huh?

Monday, April 28, 2008

It Ain't Easy Being Tribabe

Saturday was quite a day, after the triathlon we went to a friend's party in Salem where Bill played disc golf all day and I socialized from my chair. Then we drove back to Corvallis around 8pm and I met some sporty women for dinner. I got home around 10:30 pm and slept like a log.

I was really impressed with Bill's effort on Saturday, he supported me at the race and ran the tribabe booth, I know for a fact that isn't easy. I was really grateful for his help and I think it helped him understand some of the challenges I face with event sales. I spent about 5 minutes at the tribabe booth and closed 3 sales that totalled more than he made all morning. Poor Bill! He thought that was pretty dang funny (thank goodness).

I'm back in Salem this week for more project management training Mon-Thurs. It will be a busy week for me so don't expect too much on the blog.

We watched "3:10 to Yuma" last night and it was a good enough movie but who the heck decided Russell Crowe looked like a cowboy? It distracted me the entire movie, he acted well but he looks like an Irish boxer or a gladiator, not a cowboy.

Anyway, more useless info for you: our dog knows what "P-U" means. I started saying it a few weeks ago whenever I smelled something bad coming from his direction and he would sniff around and then look all self conscious. Last night I smelled something foul and I said, "Marshall! P-U!" and he got up and moved across the room with his head hung low. It was the cutest thing I've ever seen. I'm not exaggerating. I know I have no life so don't bother emailing me to say so.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Western Oregon University Triathlon 2008

I had an awesome time yesterday at the WOU sprint triathlon, I want to tell you everything so try to stick with me, this race report ends includes stuff about Bill Clinton and a hilarious shower scene! EXCITING!

A couple of weeks ago I ran into this Guy who does a lot of the local sprint triathlons on a mountain bike. His name is Guy by the way. He's pretty darn fast, he rides slick tires not big nobbies, and he has a better than decent run so don't ask me why I started a smack down with him. I think it started when he asked me what swim time I put down, you have to give a swim time for these pool triathlons so they can place you in heats, and we realized we both put the same time and would likely be in the same heat. I thought I could take him in transition and on the bike but he would easily put me to shame on the run. Guy did the race last year so I looked up his results and got some bad news, he was 20s second from the women's race winner so from that point on, Guy was the women's race lead and I was going to get my butt kicked.
The weather was perfect on Saturday, sunny with a high of 70. Bill set up the tribabe booth next to the transition area while I checked in at registration and got ready to race. I saw the race director and she told me Bill Clinton was going to speak at the location where the race registration and awards were to be held (the gym) that day and they got 2 days notice about the event. The Clinton campaign had to pay for a large canopy and chairs for the race so we could still have the awards ceremony. It also meant 300+ people lined up around the transition area waiting for Clinton to speak. It was totally wierd.

Anyway, finally to the race: the swim was in a funky little pool that has the shallowest shallow end I've ever seen for a lap pool. I could sit on my knees in the water and my shoulders would come out of the water. Flip turns at the end would be nearly impossible without brain damage. I think the timing people came up with this idea to have continuous heats with 3 swimmers per lane the entire time. We still had heats but as soon as a swimmer finished, another swimmer jumped in and started their 500. The bad part of this is the heats were by swim time so when I jumped in I was instantly on the feet of a guy who put a slower swim time than I did and when people came in after me, they were going to swim faster. It was a bit of a mess. I also had a breast stroker in my lane who kicked me a couple of times and stole my draft (I was drafting off of a guy and he caught her but she only let him pass so I was stuck behind her breast stroke kicking which irked me--major pet peeve for me, if you are going to do a triathlon, swim freestyle!) I think my swim time was around 8:20, not a PR by any stretch but it was done.

Out into T1 and Guy is right there! We both scrambled to get our biking stuff on and I think Bill was yelling at us from his cheap seat. This bike course is kind of brutal, within 1 mile you are on rollers and within 2 miles you are on an extended climb. Guy caught me on the climb and I worked to keep him within 50 yards of me until we hit the flat section where I hoped to kick his butt. He yelled something to me about not pedaling on the downhills so I decided to stop being a chick and pushed the downhills so I wouldn't lose any time to him. We were having a blast with eachother, taunting and encouraging, he's a great Guy ;) With my great luck, the flat section had a head wind so I made no time on Guy there, in fact, he passed me right before we turned off so I had to work again to keep him in my sights. We had to climb back up that big hill and I caught Guy about 1/2 way up the climb and I didn't look back. I think I made it into the transition area about 30 seconds before he did but a woman passed me right at the end of the 18 mile bike ride. It was the only woman who passed me the entire race and I recognized her as someone who won a race I was at last year. YIKES! I think my bike time was around 1 hour but I don't know for sure, it was probably more than that.

Somehow Guy beat me out of T2 so I went hauling butt out of there and passed that woman back. She told me I looked strong and I told her "You're from the heat behind me so don't worry about me!" I thought she probably had 10 minutes on me. I was surprised that I was able to run as hard I was going but soon enough I felt a cramp coming on in my abdomen. I had to get rid of it before it got worse so I slowed down my breathing but tried to keep the pace up. I had some mental battles on the run, thoughts about wanting to walk and asking myself why I was doing this, did I really need external validation in this way, just ridiculous mind defeating stuff. That was the only part of the race I regret, I did not have my mental game totally together BUT I didn't walk, I pushed all the way to the end, no women passed me and I crossed the finish line with a smile. Guy beat me by just under 2 minutes and he was waiting for me at the finish. The run here is a long 5 k, I think they advertise it as 3.23, my run tim was around 25 minutes and I think everyone's time was a good bit slower than a typical 5k time.

The race director is so thoughtful and awesome, she had a cooler full of Odwalla juices and catered in sandwiches from a local shop at the finish. I wanted to hang out with the other racers in the sun but I thought I better get back and shower since we had a party to go to afterwards and the Clinton people were lining up around the block. I figured I had done well enough in the triathlon to place and since no one passed me, I might even be the 2nd place female. I grabbed my bag and headed toward the locker room. A cop greeted me and said, "You have about 1 minute before the bomb sniffing dogs come in." FABULOUS!

Luckily there was a woman showering in there already so I told her the news about the cops and the dogs coming in as I stripped off my clothes. She said, "I paid $6,000 for these things, I hope someone sees them!" I looked over at her chest and it sure did look like she paid some big money for those things! I took a 30 second shower and rushed out to put some clothes on and she said, "I'm going to put my thong underwear on." which she did and I think she was just waiting for her moment. I got dressed and tried to start drying my hair when the cops came into the women's locker room with their bomb sniffing dogs. They had the race director with them and by then the women was dressed so we hustled it out. One of the cops said, "Sorry to inconvenience you ma'am." So I had a shower with a woman with implants and I almost had a shower with a cop and his dog. What a day!
Bill packed up tribabe stuff while I went to the awards ceremony. Guy won the mountain bike division and beat the fastest female of the day and I was the 2nd overall female and was 49 seconds behind the lead female. I think I had 49 seconds in me but! I kicked butt for my first race in a year and a half. Guy and I had a blast racing each other and it was a tough race and an awesome day. YEAHHHH!!! Here is a photo of the rivals:

Friday, April 25, 2008

Obsessive People

I bet you thought this post would be about me but it's not! Last night, Bill came home from playing disc golf with his buddies and wanted to talk about how long we are going to stay at a friend's party on Saturday. Every year our friend's host a party at their house and the guy's turn it into a major disc golf playing day because the party host has a course on his property. Basically we show up at the party and I don't see Bill for 5 hours.

We are doing the triathlon Saturday morning (get there by 6:30 am) and I've been invited to a sporty girl's get together Saturday night (7 pm) so there is a lot going on and it will be a long day no matter what we do. I think I'll bring a sleeping bag to the party so I can get a nap in, several people stay the night there and pitch tents so I won't be out of line for taking a nap.

Anyway, Bill's buddies have started a disc golf tournament and I don't know the details but it will last over several months and it involves accumulating points and the leader wears a yellow jersey when they play. Typically the guys play Thursday after work and an occasional Saturday, but this Saturday they will all be together at this party and the host offers a trophy to whoever has the best score on the course for the day so the excitement is doubled for the guys.

What this means to the wife: Bill will not talk to me, look at me, or even care if I exist and I better not want to leave before the trophy and points have been decided. There goes my sporty girl's dinner, unless they finish before dark which isn't too likely. Pout pout. I know, I had my girl time last weekend so I shouldn't complain but this is my blog so I can complain here.

Bill's disc golf friends don't do triathlons so I used to like that they weren't obsessive like our triathlon friends but it turns out they are obsessed it's just with something different. Bill must like obsessive people because he's married to one and hangs out with a whole pack of them.

I'm going to try to not obsess about tomorrow for the rest of the day. Good luck with that! I won't have time to post until Sunday (duh) but I'll write a race report and obsess over the results for the next week. I'm so excited!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

You Can't Win the Race 2 Days Early

I know I'm not going to win the triathlon on Saturday but today, well, today I was running like I was winning the triathlon on Saturday, only today is Thursday.

Darn it! I was fatigued this week and needed to recover and yesterday I was planning to run for the last time but I forgot my running shoes and my back up plan (Bill bring running shoes) fell through so I ended up doing an easy aqua jog. That just didn't seem good enough for a pre-race run so today I went to the track ran like I was winning that thing. Stupid!

I have no idea what my run pace is right now and it's driving me crazy. I didn't want to pressure myself by doing a bunch of timed miles and somehow that caused me to pressure myself. Not very smart.

Bill's birthday swim was a success, I think there were 7 swimmers there doing 38 x 100 on 1:30 and Bill led the entire workout and you could tell when he was done. He was red! He ran up McCollough Peak on Sunday (11 miles up and down) and he was a bit tired and sore from that. Poor baby!!! I think it's great he did the work out and suffered for it. He should feel his age.

We went out for dinner for his bday at the new pub in town, Block 15. It was quite good! I had a bacon, mozzarella, pesto and tomato sandwich with garlic cheese fries. Super duper pub food which is my favorite! They are brewing some excellent beer on site so it was all the more enjoyable. We picked up dessert to go at the fancy place and went to see the movie "21" which is based on a book I read a few years ago called "Bringing Down the House". Of course, the book was better, you knew that already but the movie is entertaining enough and there isn't a ton of sex or violence and I don't recall anyone throwing up (pet peeve for me to show people vomiting).

Anyhoooo! Someone needs to supervise me until Saturday.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Earth Day Baby

Photo from http://www.pinkcakebox.com/

Today is Bill's 38th birthday, he will celebrate by swimming 38 x 100 on the 1:30. YUCK! He invited our swim class thinking no one would come but a bunch of people have replied saying they are going to be there so it looks like there will be a crowd at the pool today.

We swam yesterday and I thought I would kick butt since I had been working out last week at elevations of 4500+ so I went to the pool ready to conquer my little spot in the swim lane but I was shortly in supreme suffer mode after the 1st 400 yards. I think I'm tired. I guess I need to rest a little before Saturday. I'm going to swim with Bill a little bit today and then hit the track for a short run and then the rest of the week will be short, easy workouts. I hope my legs recover!

We're planning to go out to dinner tonight and I offered to buy Bill anything he wants at the local bike shop (they are having a sale so I think he will let me buy him something). Wouldn't it be nice if he picked out that white bike with pink trim I've been looking at? Kidding! I don't need another bike right now and neither does he! I would guess he'll get bike shorts or tights or something like that.

Bill has been enjoying his new job working from home--he has been finding vendors in the NW to take waste from major companies that contract with his employer. He has been getting involved with a task force at the city level for waste reduction and is a co-facilitator of a citizens group. I'm proud of him, he's doing what he wants and I'm glad someone is interested in this stuff. He's not a hippie or a liberal but he is an environmentalist and conservative and I think we need more people like him even though I'm pretty liberal and would be a hippie if I didn't think they wore bad clothes and smelled ripe. Just kidding. I could never be a hippie. I was not kidding about the clothes and the smell, I live in Oregon and I know up close what a hippie smells like.

Last thing, when I flew into Portland on Sunday my first thought was, "Is there a fish and wildlife convention in town?" Everyone was dressed in tech pants and rain coats like they were going to be out in the field taking samples all day in the rain. Sometimes I can't believe I live here and yet I totally love it.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Aqua Jogging Fools and My Big Race Strategy

I needed a recovery day from tri camp so I went for a 40 minute aqua jogging session yesterday and it felt great. Whenever I need a recovery workout, I aqua jog. If I'm on the verge of injury, or already injured, I aqua jog. Whenever the weather is horrendous and running outside will make me miserable or hate life, I aqua jog. In the winter, I aqua jog at least once a week and I'm one of those crazy people that actually enjoys it. I think I find pleasure in it because I believe in it as an effective tool for improving running and so does Bill. He has used it before several key races when he was injured and he was able to perform well running. Of course, he is a genetic freak so we can't really count him.

I use hydro cuffs for my workouts (photo above) they provide buoyancy and resistance for your legs. I alternate between a high knee lift and a straight leg stride (like cross country skiing) during the workouts. I notice when I run on land, especially into a strong headwind that I am able to drive my knees up consistently and I credit that to aqua jogging. I think it makes me stronger and keeps me away from injury.

Bill likes to do several sprints while aqua jogging and even carry a water brick on occasion to make it harder. A lot of people I talk to about aqua jogging say it's boring--I try to aqua jog with a friend or do lots of different sets so the time passes faster and I don't go longer than 1 hour.

When I have a good aqua jogging session, my entire body is fatigued, the resistance from the water makes for a great total body workout. It also feels good to aqua jog in slightly cool water, that feels very nice for recovery. I have arthritis and aqua jogging helps ease some of the pain in my upper body. In warmer water you have to be careful to drink water since you can't feel yourself sweat. I have stumbled out of the pool a couple of times after not drinking enough. Here are some articles that include information about aqua jogging:

-Active.com Try Aqua Jogging for Recovery
-Runner's World Forum

My recovery time is over, today I'm back to swim class and will ride the trainer tonight after work. Tomorrow is Bill's birthday so I'll have to fit a run in early so we can go out and have a nice evening. I've come up with a race plan for Saturday and I hope I can stick to it: cruise the swim (the pool is ridiculous--3 lanes and super shallow so there will be no 500 PR here) get up the first set up hills on the bike at a moderate pace and then start pushing hard for the rest of the bike, cruise the first mile of the run and then build into a hard pace and then end with an all out effort and hope there is no one around me at the end since I've lost every sprint finish I've been in. This could be the only triathlon I do this year or the start of the tri season depending on whether or not I get pregnant. That's quite a split in the road: pregnancy or triathlons. It will be interesting to see what happens!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Photos from triathlon camp

It was so hard to leave sunny California and my friends! Bill said when he woke up Sunday morning it was snowing in Corvallis and the thought of returning home to cold and cloudy was quite depressing. Fortunately, flowers and trees are in bloom here despite the cold so driving home from the airport I was reminded about the beauty of this area and what a joy it is to live here in Oregon.

The sun broke through the clouds by the time I got home and my family was waiting for me. Bill and I, the dog and two cats all took a cat nap in the sun together on our bed for a while and then Bill made a great dinner while I caught up on the tv shows I had missed (survivor, the office and men in trees).

Now it's back to reality and coasting into next weekend and a triathlon in the cold rain! WAH!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Triathlon Camp 3 (chick soup)

Today was a bike riding day, we rode the course of the "Devil's Punchbowl" bike race. I would NOT want to race that ride, it was a long climb going up and steep going down. All of the ladies made it and we got home before the winds kicked up too bad and when we got back we were greeted with a huge lunch. Some of the ladies had a post ride hot tub session that lasted almost 2 hours. I sat outside with them and Monty got us up to date on the US Olympic triathlon trials. Cathy and I motivated ourselves enough to get out on a run which was good except the wind was kicked up by then and put the final hurt on me. Or perhaps the wine we drank this evening was the finishing touch. Or the lasagna and chocolate cake. It was a good day!

Tonight we had awards, every year we bring gifts and we all give gifts to each other and say something great about what the woman has done. It's always fun and touching. This year we had one woman who completed Ironman Arizona last week and she kept up with all of the workouts with out complaint. She was given a t-shirt from Jen's web store (http://petitfourlegs.com)that says "Strong and Stoic". Perfect! I got "Loyal and Loving" which made me tear up! Total chick stuff.

We had some great quotes from Monty this year, he started out the weekend wearing a t-shirt that said "Bates Motel" on it which was quite funny but other quotes, I hope your didn't have to be there, he wore Zoomers during part of the swim and the ladies were like "You can't race us with fins on!" and he said "They aren't fins! They're Zoomers!" The ladies were all like those are FINS!!! Later on we were talking about Sheila Toaromina's attempt at medaling at the Olypmics and 3 different sports and he was telling us that she was having a hard time learning fencing and Monty said, "Fencing isn't swashbuckling, it's all fastwitch" and for some reason, we thought swashbuckling was hilarious. I hope you are amused too.

I'll post totally awesome pics tomorrow when I get home. Cheers!

Tri Camp Blogs

A couple of other women are blogging from tri camp, here are the links:

Cathy: http://web.mac.com/ironclm/iWeb/Site/2008.html

Michelle: http://parentheticalstatement.wordpress.com/

This morning we watched Hawaii Ironman coverage from 1981 back when they weighed participants 5 times during the race. It was pretty hilarious stuff. We're headed out for a ride here shortly and I'll write more later.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Triathlon Camp Day 2

Wish I could upload photos--I have some good ones! Today I ran in the morning, swam at a great outdoor pool at noon and then went on a bike ride in the evening. A great triathlon day but made even better by ending with margaritas and beer in the hot tub and then tri tip steak for dinner and chocolate cake and wine. Couldn't be better!

I started out the day challenging Monty and Dan to a swim meet. In order to get the mental edge I said we wanted to do a 400 IM. Monty's eyes got big and he started making excuses about how he had only recently swam a 200 IM yadda yadda yadda. I had the edge. We got to the pool and swam ~2500 yards and started our meet which ended up being two teams sprinting 25 yards against each other. Dan anchored my team and Monty anchored the other, I'll let you guess who won.

The weather is still great and tomorrow we will do a longer ride and run. I think Dan is doing live coverage of the triathlon olympic trials on slowtwitch tomorrow so tune in!

We don't have any special male guests this year so Monty (formerly a pro triathlete who pioneered several tri innovations) and Dan (founded a bike company and made the first triathlon wetsuit) are on their own entertaining the womens. Dan has risen to the occasion, taking the girls shopping and letting us borrow sweet bikes--Michelle built up a Trek Madone right out of the box and has been riding it all weekend. I brought my pedals and a helmet and have been riding a Kuota K Factor. Dan got a new Cervelo yesterday that will be his race bike, we thought it would be hilarious to build it and take a photo of him on it and post on slowtwitch asking for advice on his position. Only slowtwitch insiders will get how entertaining that is.

I have managed to balance workouts, hot tubbing, socializing, and drinking without getting too dehydrated or sore so the weekend has been a success. I bet the ladies will throw down more tequila tomorrow night, our last night here. Looking forward to the party but not the end of the weekend. It has been fun!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Triathlon Camp Day 1

Greetings from the middle of nowhere! I'm at triathlon camp in the hills outside of Palmdale, CA at Dan and Monty's compound with the ladies of Slowtwitch. If that doesn't make sense to you, I can't describe it. This area is stunning, high desert, cactus, mountains, and best of all: friends!

Today was a travel day for me, but the ladies (Erin, Cathy, Michelle, Ariel, and Deanna) were ready for a bike ride when I got here so we got a quick one in before Monty cooked dinner. We had dinner on the patio outside as the sun was setting and I have a beautiful photo of the ladies but I forgot the camera cable so no photos until I get home. Sorry! I'll post a link to Cathy's blog, she has photos.

Tomorrow the plan is to hit the pool for a swim meet and likely ride and/or run. The weather is amazing and QRGirl shipped a case of wine here so woo ho!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Triathlon Camp

Tomorrow (Thursday) I leave for the annual all-women's triathlon camp! I am very excited to get down to SoCal where the weather is warm and my girlfriend's will be ready for some hard workouts and margarita recoveries. Packing for 3 sports and hanging with girls is a nightmare, much more complicated than what I would have going if it was just Bill and I.

I tried on an outfit last night and he said, "You look Amish or something" so impressing him with leggings and a little black dress is really just a waste of time. Thank goodness for girlfriends otherwise I'd wear hiking boots and vests everywhere ;)

I will blog and post photos daily from camp so you'll be hearing from me.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Sluurrred sppeeecch

Last week coach decided he'd had enough of my swim stroke and started making me do drills. It turns out my husband was right, I don't kick when I swim so coach kept telling me to kick faster and faster. So I went from thud-thud-thump to kic-kic-kic-kic-kic-thud or something like that. This is exhausting. I didn't kick for a reason, kicking makes your face red and wears your legs out. Next coach said I was whipping my right arm around and crossing over the center with that arm. This is bad. So he had me do finger tip dragging so my elbow was up outside of the water. So instead of thud-thud-whip-thump-pull I was doing kic-kic-bend-kic-drag-kick-pull. My head almost exploded trying to keep it all together but I managed to swim this way for the entire main set which was mostly 50s.

This week, coach did not forget last week's lesson for me. As soon as he saw me he said "Now remember..." and he was watching me from the start. So I set out kicking and finger tip dragging and then he calls the main set: 14x100 on 1:45 (faster people did more on a shorter interval) which is perfect for me to try these drills out. So off I go but after about 300 yards my face was beet red and I was gasping for air. Then coach came over and said, "You're lifting your head out of the water when you breath, look down and only let one eye out of the water when your head turns."

Oh jeez. So I added gasping and coughing to the kicking and dragging and as we churned through the set, I inhaled more water trying to keep my head down and the effort I put into kicking caught up to me in the end. I had to take a couple of breaks just so I could continue but I made it through 90% of the main set.

After swimming Bill was kind enough to say, "It is really hard to focus on technique, it takes like 50% more effort than just chilling and swimming." I tried to say something back but words were not coming out correctly. Bill said, "Wow, you just slurred your speech!" and I just kept on walking so I could get to lunch, the only thing that would set me right. I really appreciated that he said it was hard because it was hard. My body feels like a big lead weight right now. Sweet stoned recovery.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Ahhhhh Yard Work

It was finally nice enough to get outside and do some yard work this weekend. We woke up to the sounds of birds chirping--I think they were calling us to clean up the red algae growing in the bird bath so they could start bathing AHEM! Despite the neglect the yard doesn't look too bad, just some overgrown stuff and grass growing in flower beds. I don't know that we'll do anything special out here this year. Bill is hot on indoor projects and wants to tear out the carpet downstairs and put in flooring. He wants me to pick out flooring ASAP since it's on sale and I'm kind of nervous about it for some reason.

Now I know why Bill calls Marshall "bat ears"!
We also managed to get the house mostly cleaned, take tribabe stuff out for embroidery, shop for some last minute stuff for my trip, and finish our taxes (yeahhh!!!). We are never this productive so I'm not sure what got into us. We didn't see any friends which was kind of sad since it was so nice out but we had each other and we weren't fighting over the garage so it was a very nice weekend.

I bailed on biking on Sunday, Bill delayed going out until 5pm on Sunday (he was watching golf) and by then it was windy and getting cold and I was 10 minutes into a nap with the dog. I pried myself off the couch and went for a run instead which means I get to make up the bike ride tonight on the trainer. I'm getting my hair done after work so I'll have to tell the stylist not to bother with the fancy products since I'm headed home and plan to get sweaty. wah wah wah. Lame! Here are some photos I took of Naomi "Cassie" Campbell yesterday:

Cassie trying to nap on the swinging chair on the deck.

Cassie responding to me trying to move her into the light for a better photo.

Cassie giving me the death stare. Photo shoot over.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

I Did Something Smart Today

Odd day today! We had sunny skies and a forecast for upper 70s and Oregonians go crazy this time of year when that happens. Bill and I drove up to Salem to run errands and then went to Monmouth (south of Salem) and stopped at WOU to ride the bike course for the triathlon I'm signed up for.

Bill did this race last year and I forgot he said it was the most difficult sprint he'd ever done. Last year it was a 10 mile bike course and this year the changed it to just over 17 miles. So it's still difficult only longer! All I remembered hearing about the bike course was that it had lots of "rollers" which I love! So when we started out on the ride I climbed up the first few rollers using my aero bars and everything was going fine until we started climbing up UP UP what was practically a mountain pass. DUDE!

The roads are rough too so I was descending sitting bolt upright and was still going 35 mph. What's even better: you get to come back up this little mountain on the way back in. FABULOUS!

The smart thing I did was asking Bill to drive me there and ride this course ahead of time because I would have been tripping out in the middle of the race to discover this monster of a course. Now I know what I'm in for and I will try to squeeze in some climbing on the bike in the next 12 days. Going to training camp should help.

We're riding again tomorrow, just a short one, and I will likely try to run afterwards. I think I might be glad when this triathlon is done. What a lot of effort for just a sprint. I might have to do another one so I can remember how "easy" they are!

Also glad the weather was warm so I could practice exercising in heat. I had a really hard time putting on a skirt to go shopping today. It just doesn't feel right to expose my legs this time of year! Go white girl!

Friday, April 11, 2008


I tried to revive an old hobby today.

I met a friend for lunch and we found a practice room in the music building (university perk) and he played guitar while I attempted to sing. I wasn't good. I practiced last night for an hour but my voice is totally out of shape, wispy, and I missed several notes. But singing to me is like riding a bike so I remembered most of the lyrics and we got through about 8 songs in 50 minutes.

I miss music, this triathlon habit is so time consuming I don't get to all of the other things I would like to do. We'll see where I go with this, probably just the practice room. I used to sing in bars on occasion but it's been several years.

So the weather looks great for the weekend and we'll get out in it and I'll see about some lovely spring photos. Triathlon camp in socal is next week! YIKESSSSS! Can't wait!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Run Like Sequoia

After Sunday's bike ride I was 4 pounds lighter and Bill pointed out I only drank half a bottle of Gatorade during the ride. On Monday I decided a recovery aqua job was in order but I still had not gained the weight back. Tuesday I was so busy I could only squeeze in a 30 minute swim at noon, I did not even want to go to the pool because I was tired and stressed and to add insult to injury, I was hungry and it smelled like someone was serving BBQ sandwiches in the lobby of our building as I was exiting. But I managed to swim about 1200 yards and eat a healthy brown rice chicken burrito on a whole wheat tortilla. Yum. NOT!

When I got home from work on Tuesday I decided that in order for the day to be worth something then I would have to go for a run. What I really wanted to do was go shoe shopping and find some flats to replace those black shoes with a heel that are irritating my feet and legs. The only way for me to get out on that run was to put on tights and a running jacket the minute I walked in the door. By then it was raining. grrrrrrr

I needed extra motivation so we called Milo's parents and asked if Milo and his brother Sequoia could go running with me. Sequoia is a big old lab who tends to run off to hunt but if you keep him on a leash he will trot out a very consistent pace and hold it which is exactly what I needed. Bill drove me to the park with 3 dogs and we exited the car in a light mist and off I went.

I did not feel like running but the dogs did so off we went. Sequoia held his trot for the 1st of two loops, we stopped at the river and the dogs took a dip before we got going for loop two. 40 minutes later we were done! When I started to lose motivation I sang "Milo-Milo dog! I want to run, like Milo dog!" to the tune of the song "Macho Man" and I'm sure anyone who observed the crazy singing lady running with 3 dogs steered clear of the crazy pack.

Today my weight is back to normal but I'm tired so tonight I'll ride the trainer and go shoe shopping at lunch. I can delay gratification no longer! I better not smell BBQ today!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Hill bogey on a touring bike

On Sunday I decided to skip trail running and get my bike on the road. I've been riding the bike trainer and can't take much more of indoor riding so even though it was windy and threatening to rain, I geared up and got out the door. Bill stayed home, his feet are mangled from biking in the triathlon without socks so I was on my own. Something got into me when I got out there and I rode out to the start of the Decker 20 mile time trial course and went after it.

The course is a hilly loop and my best time biking this loop is just under 1 hour. I thought that with the wind and almost total lack of fitness (especially no climbing legs) that I could live a 1:20 on Sunday. I started out south and into a headwind and couldn't manage faster than 14.5 mph. After turning west, the wind eased a little bit but was still blowing at me so I didn't get much faster going into the big hill. About half way up the hill I saw a rider ahead.

Nothing gets my legs pumping harder than a bogey on a hill. Except I forgot that I don't have any climbing legs so imagine my embarrassment to find that my all out effort meant I could barely pass a guy riding a touring bike, he even had gray hair! What a loser! (me) I continued to push up the hill hoping I wouldn't die (of embarrassment) and just as I crested at the top, the rain started coming down. I lived through the slippery descent and turned onto the highway heading north.

I always push this section no matter how desperate so I started hauling even though my legs were burning from the effort. I looked down and saw I was maintaining 20 mph and seeing 26 mph at times. I pushed all out until I turned west for the final section and hallelujah I still had some tailwind so I kept on pedaling until I crossed the finish in 1:11:30. Not great, but not bad. This was the first time I've ridden the loop this year so I will take it and hope I can make some major improvements in biking in the next 2 weeks. HA!

Later that evening a friend invited us over for dinner and he served seafood alfredo with caesar salad and 3 different types of wine. Oh man, not a good way to recover! Rich food and alcohol. What a brutal day.

Today is Monday, I've got a new laptop from work and we set up our wireless router at home so I'm typing while Bill watches the college basketball finals. Thank goodness that's done and we've joined the 21st century!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Beaver Freezer triathlon 2008

Saturday we were up at 4:30 am to get to our first triathlon of the season. It's nice for me that the 1st tri is here in Corvallis so we can take two cars full of Tribabe stuff. Bill was signed up to race and like last season, he's not in shape. He has won this race 3 times, it's usually pretty competitive for the top spot, but he was hoping for top 3 this year. Like me, Bill is 10 pounds over race weight (I'm more like 20 pounds over) but unlike me, he's still fast. He did the race in just over 1 hour, they expanded the run course this year and had the bike turnaround out a bit farther so the times were slower than previous years. Bill came in 4th overall and won his division. I'm sure that won't be the case for me when I race in two weeks so I'm getting ready for that now. :)

Sales for me were up 25% over last year. I brought some new items including men's polo shirts and some nice fleece tops that I will be adding to my web store. I was hoping for a higher total figure but most of my stuff is an impulse buy so my sales skills have to be sharp to close deals, I'm not there yet. This work is so different than what I do in my daily job and I enjoy the challenge. Today, I'm going to trail run, clean the house and clean up tribabe stuff. Not exciting but a good weekend.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Springtime in Salem Oregon

I had advanced project management class in Salem this week and what a treat! Not the class but the lovely springtime weather and blooming trees near the capital building. I managed to get there 5 minutes early and quickly snapped some photos yesterday.

The class was a little bit slow this time and I was there for 3 days so it had it's painful moments. I've been working with a great team throughout this class and we've made it fun whenever we can. Yesterday someone ordered a pitcher of margaritas at lunch time so that made everything quite a bit more fun!

I don't go to Salem too often but this area of town with the capital buildings and Willamette University is nice. It was hard for me to be away from Corvallis for training this week because I had a long to do list to get ready for the Beaver Freezer and it was really difficult to get workouts in after driving up to Salem and back and needing to work on tribabe.com until late into the evening. I managed to get in a run and 1 hour on the trainer last night so the week was not lost but I certainly didn't get any fitter this week. Oh well! At least I'm not signed up for the Beaver Freezer tomorrow! The forecast is low of 40, high of 50 and rain. Could be worse for Bill and the other racers.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Not funny nonsense

Check out my new running shoes, if you think they look too dirty to be new then you must not live in Oregon. White shoes is for Californians. I know, I'm not funny. I'm too tired to care or write much more so that's the end of that. Yesterday I had a Coke with lunch (at noon) and I couldn't sleep last night so I'm sleep deprived and I spent all day trying not to fall asleep in advanced project management while the instructor covered the various types of standard PM reports. FASCINATING! It was like a slow death.

I've managed to ween myself off caffeine to the point that I can't tolerate it at all now. I never really thought I would ever say that, ever in my life. I love the caffeine rush that much. I guess life changes whether I want it to or not.

Now here is a gratuitous photo of the cat sleeping on top of the dog this evening. I guess they didn't care who got voted off American Idol and I shouldn't either!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

What a difference a day makes

What triathlon?

I'm back up to Salem this week for advanced project management training and I have to get ready for sales at the Beaver Freezer this weekend so I will likely not have a lot of time to train or plot a reduction in my 500 yard swim time. OH WELL!

I also won't have time to blog much either, my to do list was burning a hole in my purse all day today while I was at class so I will sneak in some work right now and start all over again tomorrow.

This is a balanced life I'm leading here... right? Triathlon camp in southern CA is coming up the week after next so I think I'll just look forward to that and push through this week.

Happy April Fools, Bill ironed my pants this morning for me but then told me he burned a hole in them. HA ha. ha. haa.