Saturday, November 5, 2011

Uh Oh... Northface 50k ?

Northface 50k is in jeopardy..

That is right... heading into month 3 of training and we have an issue. My feet! I have just ordered my 4th pair of trail running shoes to try to satisfy my high maintenance injury prone feet and if this 4th pair does not work then that's it.. it's just not meant to be.

1st pair- Brooks Cacadia- thought this would be the ultimate trail running companion as it's worked well before but little did I know it does not like being on my feet for longer than 3.5 hours. During the past month, I've driven home many times barefoot because they would be in so much pain. Starts in the middle of my big toe bone then leads to my arches and eventually to my knee. No bueno. I've even put in my pair of orthotics in there.. no good.

2nd pair- Brooks Pure Grit- oh how I love these shoes! They're Brooks new line.. light.. fits my feet like a glove.. tough for any rocks to get in there. Sounds all good right? Well... because this is a minimalist shoe.. not enough heel cup support leads to a different kind of foot pain- achilles. Pick your poison, right?

3rd pair- so today... on my what was supposed to be 4 hour run on a new pair of Brooks Adrenaline ASR. People at the Zombie Runner said either this shoe or the Pure Grit would be good. Well... I was better off with the Pure Grit than I was with these. The ASR's brought back the issues of the Cascadia's almost instantly making it relatively painful 3 hour run instead of the 4.

So... 4th pair- New Balance 915's have been ordered. My loyal New Balance 1226 running shoes have been very good to me these past years so I emailed NB to ask their suggestion on a trail shoe based on the 1226. I hope they're right! They should be here in time for next weekend's adventure in the trails.

And if the 4th pair doesn't work, well then, that's a sign!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

2011- Ironman Worlds

Week as a spectator..

What a week! Once again, I found myself in Kona during Ironman Worlds. It's been two years since I've been to this event yet so much has changed! I wouldn't say it's for the better as it felt more like a trade show than an event. Regardless, the athletes put on a great race and a great show. Aside from supporting the AIMPers and friends of, I was rooting hard for three pro guys whom I met back in 2009 in Kona. Pete Jacobs ended up taking 2nd, Dirk Bockel I had a feeling would crack the Top 5 this year (he came in 4th) and though Rasmus Henning did not have the day he wanted, I have no doubts he'll be back stronger than ever in the coming years.

Below is a video of the week in review! New friends, new schwag, always fun. I love our sport!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Celebrating Pete

September 3rd, 2011 was a perfect day to celebrate the life of our dear friend, Pete Cadwell. The sun was shining for the memorial hike/walk. Friends gathered from near and far. There were tears and laughter. I wouldn't have spent this day any other way.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Promise Yourself by Christian D. Larson

"Promise Yourself "

To be so strong that nothing

can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity
to every person you meet.

To make all your friends feel

that there is something in them
To look at the sunny side of everything
and make your optimism come true.

To think only the best, to work only for the best,

and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others
as you are about your own.

To forget the mistakes of the past

and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times
and give every living creature you meet a smile.

To give so much time to the improvement of yourself

that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear,
and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world,

not in loud words but great deeds.
To live in faith that the whole world is on your side
so long as you are true to the best that is in you. "
Christian D. Larson

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hitting the Trails

Here we go again!

With all that's been going on, this week was finally a good one. The entire month of August has been a bit rough and I am glad it's coming to an end and I welcome September with open arms! Thank goodness for music and chocolate is all I gotta say!

I've been in all day meetings this entire week reviewing Athleta's Summer 2012 product and I have to say, it all looks so awesome! Because I knew I would be in meetings all day long this week, I took the opportunity to go on a three day all fruit and raw foods eating cleanse. I've been taking in so much sugar this month that I was starting to feel the effects of it internally and was not liking it. The cleanse felt great and helped jump start my training for the North Face 50k trail running race. That's right-- I'm back on the training horse. I think the conversation with my coach went something like...

Me: Ok, signed up, ugly trail shoes bought, hydration pack got.
Coach: 50 miler :)?
Me: No, 50k!
Coach: How about the 50 miler?!
Me: No, how about the 50k :)?!
Coach: You should get a map

Gotta love the coach!

I went on my first training run this past Saturday with my long time training bud Caesar (he is doing
the 50 miler). We started Ironman together, as well as, coach's pain cave so it was almost de ja vu as we start another adventure together. I managed to recruit a few more suckers for the 50k so it should be a fun race come December 3rd! Then on Sunday, my good friend Jade took me on some trails in Marin and it was beautiful indeed. Both days, I started with my perspective training buds but would end up going our own paces. Being out there on my own and feeling free was such a nice feeling. The nice feeling definitely helped validate that some of the personal decisions I made earlier this year was indeed the right ones! I was in my element and I loved it! I love feeling healthy again and feeling able and wanting to feel like this. I am fortunate to be surrounded by so many positive people with so much love in their hearts. I think it's safe to say that I am no longer feeling the burn out from earlier this year :).

So.. on the flip side of feeling mentally great... physically.. I am having difficulty walking without my quads firing! The last time I was in my running shoes was my 10 minute shake out run the night before IM CdA. My first training run on Saturday was for 90 minutes. That's my coach for ya!

Live. Laugh. Love.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Read of the week

Sometimes winning isn't everything

Thanks for stopping by. I wanted to share a beautifully written race report which in many ways honors our friend Pete Cadwell.

Sometimes winning isn't everything... Tyler Stewart's IM Lake Stevens 70.3 Racer report-

Read me.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Mission Cheese At Last!

Mission Cheese Accomplished

Many moons ago, my colleague/friend, (also one of the raddest chicks I know) decided to drop her career in fashion merchandising to become... drumroll please... a cheesemonger! Sarah's decision came after a two + week stint in the countries of France and England romancing every cheese farm she can map her way to. She will tell you that her decision came a long time ago after another thankless day in corporate America but I assure you the thankless part was not contributed by me..I provided thanks! Perhaps I even contributed a laughter or two but I probably could have thanked her a little more :-).

Leaving the corporate doors as a salaried employee for the last time, she embarked on a road trip cross America knocking on the doors of cheese farms and picking the brains of cheese farmers. She secured the perfect spot for her passion with a lease in the Mission district, thus Mission Cheese was born.

Actually, a lot more happened in between all that but I won't bore you with the details. However, I will point out that weeks before opening day, MC was greeted with costing challenges but nothing that an IndiGoGo (see photo with names of some of the many supporters) campaign couldn't solve! Thanks to Sarah's undeniable passion for cheese and a community willing to help, MC was able to raise more than what was needed and thus open it's doors on the planned opening day.

It was so nice to catch up with friends and colleagues, old and new. I think it's safe to say that a good time was had by all and that we will be back! This past Wednesday was my first visit there and I brought a few friends along with me to share in the experience. Those of you that missed it.. no worries.. I will host another happy hour shortly!

When I have a moment to think and reflect, I am surrounded by people who are doing amazing things everyday. There is my friend Neal whose Three Twins Ice Cream business has grown enough to warrant it's own factory. We have my former joint at the hip colleague of a Cheesemonger in Sarah. Another former colleague/ coffee buddy, Jeff just quit his job and is embarking on a trip across America on a motorcycle. I must mention that he is also a stand up comedian- no really- see! However, I am most proud of Jeff for often being a top runner at the Annual Hunky Jesus Competition in San Francisco. A handful of my friends have moved away recently whether to continue their careers in another country or to start another career in the form of medical school. Dana.. I am thinking of you and Sam as the two of you are in the middle of your TransRockies Run (crazy)! I have friends that inspire me with their strength and outlook in approaching everyday life. No worries, I am in no way feeling like a failure next to these fearless kids, instead I feel lucky to call them my friends as they continue to inspire me with their passion for life.

To inspire and be inspired.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chick Flick Recovery

One Day

It's a nice Saturday afternoon when I met up with a girl-friend to watch the movie, "One Day" with Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess. It wasn't what I expected and definitely not for the light hearted.

This movie will not make you laugh out loud like "Something Borrowed" or "Friends With Benefits" but it will tug at your emotions and capture your attention. Walking out of the theatre.. it's a feeling of damned if you do and damned if you don't when it comes to matters of the heart. Ladies, do your man a favor and leave him at home for this one.

I really thought we were going to come out of the theatre laughing but instead we found our way to pizza and football for the perfect post chick flick recovery. If only Susie Cakes would have stayed open longer, I would have fully redeemed myself with Mel when it comes to choosing sad movies. She still doesn't let me forget that I "made her" watch "Marley & Me".

My favorite line from the movie read, "She made you decent and you made her happy." Maybe just as good as my favorite movie line of all time from Notting Hill, "I'm also just a girl standing in front of a boy asking him to love her." What can I say? I'm a gal .. I like pink.. that's what movies are for though fully aware that life is not a chick flick. Bonne nuit.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


In honor of a friend that passed away a week ago today.. we were asked to list ten things that we're most grateful for and then 1 thing that we need to address. Here it goes..

  • Grateful for the health of my loved ones.
  • Grateful that my parents raised me in an environment where I was not restricted in my thoughts or choices.
  • Grateful in my collection of friends as I’ve learned and am learning from every single one of them- whether it be positive or negative.
  • Grateful for the experience that resulted in a handful of endurance races under my belt.
  • Grateful for the glass half full mentality that I’ve acquired. I am not sure where it came from but I am glad I have it because at the end of the day, the sun will rise in the east and set in the west and the world will go on.
  • Grateful to recognize that I have the strength to overcome the personal hurdles that's come my way.
  • Grateful for my passion and love for photography.
  • Grateful for my travel experiences outside of the bubble I live in.
  • Grateful for the fact that things always seem to just work out.
  • Grateful for many memories collected that continues to put a smile to my face.
The one thing I need to address... that I need to do when the time is right but it's on my mind and on the list!

The last time I saw Pete, we were trading goodbye hugs at a friend's BBQ just a few weeks ago (7/24). He was getting ready to run home. I have no doubts he is covering miles wherever he is.

R.I.P. Pete.. we're thinking of you.

Monday, August 1, 2011

MRI results..

Hm..what are we looking at here?

MRI scan goes up at the offices of TDR. Everything is in tact.. I have great knees.. it's just missing some cartilage and a cyst has developed. Nothing torn ...nothing broken just have to load up on a certain type of supplement.

Post scan review, Jez comes and works on my leg. My normal laughter in pain fills the room AND then TDR comes in and literally tries to relocate the cyst behind my knee. I leave Chiro Medical limping in pain-- OUCH!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

We will see if I am claustrophobic!

One month later..

It's been about a month since IM CdA and I've done a total of 2 workouts. Wait.. let me think. Yes, that is correct.. two! A friend of mine is moving to Switzerland next month so I went on a send off ride with him..not long about 45 miles that day but after hour 2.. I felt the same sharp pain digging on the tendons behind my knee that I felt at CdA. At CdA, it appeared at about 2 hours into the bike and it was the same on the send off ride.

Was the pain a factor to me stopping my race at CdA? Yes and no. No, because had I been in the right mindset, I would have pushed through the pain because it' supposed to be hard and painful. Yes, because I wasn't in the right mindset to push through that day.. like my coach and I discussed.. I was just burnt out on mental toughness that day...needed more coins in that meter.

Anyway, fast forward to yesterday, went to see my sports chiropractor.. the aide named Jez worked the heck out of my left tendon. Holy moly! I was dancing all over that treatment table while pounding my right leg to distract the pain. Usually, when I am experiencing a whole lot of pain during treatment, I break out in laughter and there was a whole lot f laughter in room 5 yesterday! TDR came in... concerned that the pain has not subsided ..that something isn't healing .. I've been sent to an appointment with the MRI tunnel.

More to come on Monday...

Sunday, June 26, 2011

2011- IM Coeur d'Alene

San Francisco gave it a go in this charmed life...

I knew this year was an off year in terms of IM focus but I had to give it go to see what happens. Now I know.. you can force a half ironman but you can't force an ironman. Duh! My day did not really go but the day did not go without entertaining moments...

Swim-- Oh the swim... coach's plan for me here was just to get through it as it appears that we've both given up on my swim. And no I do not stop for a snack on my swims, friends! My best swim was at Canada last year with a 1:30. I swum a 1:48 this year at CdA. 2,430 people started and it was pretty aggressive from beginning to end as the crowds never led up.

WTC- stop over selling your events!! There were many boats out as I took in a whole lot of fumes during the second lap. Finally out.. frozen clawed fingers and all including a twitching pinky for the first time.. what the heck was going on?

A little over eight minutes later.. out of T1 on my bike.

Bike-- Coach's plan was to bike like I didn't have to think about my run..keep my heart rate between 155-165. I executed his plan pretty well during the first half of the bike and was set to PR my IM bike split but mentally, I didn't want to be there racing. I was going to stop at the halfway mark and ride back to the house but instead I kept going hoping it'll get better. Between miles 60-80, I had internal conversations with myself.. asking and answering my own questions.. fun times! I was riding towards mile 81 when I said to myself.. "i am miserable.. what would make me happy?" Then the flashing light came.. in the form of a race support vehicle coming towards me from the opposite direction .. passing by on their way to pick someone up so I waved it down and in goes me too. Riding another 30 miles AND then to have to run a marathon was the absolute last thing I wanted to do so I did what was best for me and I am happy with my decision. I've suffered through 4 IMs consecutively in the last 3 years.. suffering through another one was not in the cards today.

My bike ride did not end without a highlight of a comedic moment though. Bib #2135 and I played cat and mouse for the first part of my bike then the second part, he continuously kept passing me and I would always wonder how he got behind me. By the 5th or 6th time of him passing me... he finally asked, "Hey San Francisco, I have to ask, did you have to use the restroom today?" I looked at him and said, "Yea... on the bike!" Clearly, he has not embraced the peeing on the bike method and probably should with the amount of times he had to stop!

Came back to the house.. coach asked what happened.. I told him I was just miserable and had no desire to be out there racing anymore although I did execute his plan for the first half of bike! Little did he know, I took the "didn't have to think about the run" race plan to a whole new level! He understood as I've had my mental burn out conversation with him before therefore, sympathy hug! He then said, "I noticed you brought your bike home." I said, "The race support people dropped me off here at the house." He nearly choked on his beer in disbelief. I do live a charmed life at times :-) Even when things don't work out.. they don't work out in the most beneficial of ways.

So what is next? I am retiring from IM's indefinitely.

Congrats to my friends who rocked CdA this year!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

2011- Wildflower Long Course Race Report

Wildflower Long Course... nothing aerobic about it!

I was convinced that I was not going to race Wildflower this year...I had a spot... I paid for it but I've been a bit down after injuring myself at Oceanside a few weeks back. I've not been able to run much since Oceanside.. I was limited to two 30 min runs and one 45 minute run a week.. I didn't think I could possibly feel good or ready about the WF Long Course.

Tuesday rolls around and I'm thinking.. hm.. maybe? Wednesday rolls around and I'm still thinking about it.. Thursday comes and done.. I'm going!

Race plan given to me by coach was .. swim hard.. ride hard.. and do as much of the run as I can.. he mentioned something about taking as long as 3 hours to run/walk the run if I wanted to.. just make it an aerobic workout. I am thinking,"aerobic workout? Wildflower? what?"

So Saturday arrives.. and here we go...

Swim- 57:30 - sighting was poor... choppy waters with waves constantly over my head which made for taking in more water than i am used to/want to. oh well can't dwell on that now.. have a ride to do!

T1- 3:22- look at that..that might be a PR T1 for me at WF?!

BIke- 3:56:52- oh that bike felt hard.. i felt like i was getting hit with wind most of the day.. head wind.. crosswinds were tough.. no tailwind to be felt. high heart rate through bike ride.. but since coach told me to just ride hard.. i didn't pay attention to heart rate. the crosswinds were a bit scary as i thought the wind would take my wheels out at any given time esp descending. my bike computer wasn't working so i had no idea how fast or slow i was going. scary moment on the bike aside from crosswinds while descending were the big trucks carrying tanks driving into our shoulder lanes.. what the heck tri cal? can't you afford to close the roads for a few hours for the safety of a few thousand people?! Just a thought...!

Moment of the bike.. up nasty grade was where I passed a bunch if folks even prompting a comment from one of the racers I passed, "smooth pedal stroke." Giggle :-)

Bike nutrition- water at water stops otherwise 265 cal bottle infinit per hour.

T2- 3:48

Run- 2:47:05- took it a mile at a time.. wanted to and was expecting to stop after the meadow leading to the top of lynch but nothing was hurting so kept going... i felt a bit lethargic at the beginning of run though.. for the first 1.5 hours i would say. chiro therapy... pre-race massage... took multiple ice baths.. and compression socks on the nights prior to race = calve pain gone! The pit was a lot longer and farther down than I had remembered...

Run nutrition- water/gatorade switched with water/gel but took in more gel than normal because i felt like i needed more.

Overall--7:48:37... 40+ minutes slower than my last Wildflower two years ago but also tougher conditions this year. Here's to the aerobic workout my coach wanted me to get in this weekend... except there was nothing aerobic about Wildflower but I continue to learn through these events! Overall, a fun weekend in the woods, on the race course and catching up with friends old and new.

Next year is the 30th Anniversary of the event... yours truly is happy to say.. I will not be participating!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

2011- IM Oceanside 70.3 Race Report

Oceanside 70.3... my favorite 70.3!

Swim- 58:25.. Ugh. That is indeed my longest. swim. ever! And rightly so as I went off course a little bit heading out and with this race, I am always nervous and anticipating the men that starts after me as they’re an aggressive bunch!

T1- 6:07 .. long run along the ramp to my bike..

Bike- 3:39:07- I thought the bike was windy during the entire course today? I kept my ride comfortable just as coach instructed..heart rate stayed in Z3 and was able to keep pace during the entirety of the course especially towards the last stretch. One thing that did surprise me this year was the amount of people walking their bikes up the hill. They’re steep but they’re not THAT steep! One funny moment though… sometime during the first ten miles of the bike, I was braking and at the same time, this bird with a squeaky chirp was chirping by me. Needless to say.. I quickly looked all around my bike thinking, “OMG OMG OMG what’s going on?” And then I realized.. stupid bird!

Bike Nutrition- 2 bottles of 265 cal infinit. Usually I take in 3 but I didn't need it today and I didn't feel like taking it in.. also took water at each water stop.

T2- 2:36 – OMG so happy to be off my bike! I enjoy riding and some days I love it and I used to really love it but there’s something about being at the race where I really just want to get the bike over with!! As I rack my bike, I hear voices cheering for me… I look up and there was coach, B.August and Leisha. Sorta out of it, I asked Coach, “Are you done?” Duh! Clearly! Ha ha. He then said, “Ok.. ready to run hard?” I said,”yes.. wait what does that mean?” I don’t know why I asked that.. I knew what he meant! Ha entire day’s goal was to PR my run! So off to the run I went.. and by the way.. I believe this is a PR for a T2 time.. might have something to do with the coach looking over your shoulder..

Run- 2:22:09- PR'd by 1:14 from 2009. I found my legs heading out and coming back I put in more effort BUT then I rolled an ankle after the downhill making a right on that flat section by the beach which would be around mile 4.5? My entire day’s goal was to PR the run and I roll an ankle.. ugh! I stepped into one of the cracks and kinda went flying forward ..major bummer. I took a min to get up... took another few to walk it off before continuing the run. I would have liked to PR some more obviously as I felt like I could though numb left ankle and throbbing/swollen/bleeding right knee might have hindered some efforts..

Run nutrition- coke/water - tummy cramp.

Overall- 7:08:24.. I really tried to enjoy as much of the race as I can as I won’t be doing it next year. I enjoyed my time in Oceanside though I felt something was missing from the weekend..motivation maybe? My thoughts on how I feel post race… I feel like I just did a full IM...Ouch! Also.. worth noting... guess how much money I spent at the expo?! That would be $0!! That's right zero! I am sticking to my New Year's Resolution... no more spending money on gear unless I absolutely need it!

Done and done!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

A week from today..

IM Oceanside 70.3, 2011 version

A week from today.. I would have hopefully added my 3rd Oceanside 70.3 finish to my name. Last year, going into it, I was not feeling well as I had been sick for many of the weeks leading up to it so I had no high expectations. This year, I go into it with the only expectation of getting through it the best I can and really try to enjoy the experience.

The swim will be a mess as usual but I will enjoy being swum over by the competitive men that start after me and the rough waters at the turn around. I will enjoy the fact that on your way back from the swim, you can't see a thing because the sun is in your eye and when you look at your watch after finishing the swim circuit, I will enjoy the fact that my swim time is just as long as I thought it'd be.

I will probably make the usual potty stop... while sitting on my wetsuit.. in transition... shhh don't tell anyone!

On the bike.. I will take in the scenery and the experience that we'll be riding through Camp Pendleton and if you're lucky, you can enjoy the sight of a military tank rolling next to you. I will most definitely enjoy the last portion of the bike along the palm tree lined main road that takes you back into the transition area.

Off to the run, I will indeed take my potty stop, properly in the porta-potty this time! I will enjoy the run along the promenade but will walk the short uphill probably. I will enjoy all the spectators out there with their beers and cheers. And as always, I'll greet them with a smile and a thank you as I am always gracious of their support to a stranger.

And after the race, I will take in the experience of hanging out with my friends at our annual Dairy Queen stop. Whatever my time will be, it isn't important to me this time (well hopefully it won't take me too long), I just want to enjoy it and take it in. After all, I never forget that I am fortunate enough to be able to swim in the Pacific Ocean waters, ride a bike through some of the most beautiful scenery, and the ability to run.

With much gratitude.. yours truly.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Ask and you shall receive!

I feel like I can breathe again!

Sometimes guidance and support comes from where you least expect it to. It reminds me of when I used to fundraise money for Team In Training.. the people that I thought would donate the most didn't and the people that I didn't expect to donate were my highest donors. My sigh of relief came from that form...

Thank "you" so much! Advice.. thoughts.. and all was much appreciated! I can feel like I can breathe again with a refreshed perspective..

Thursday, March 10, 2011

7 year curse?

The 7 year itch...

Or maybe the 7 year curse? I always thought the number 7 was a lucky number.. aren't the winning jackpot numbers to a slot machine "777"? I bring this up because this year has not gone how I had envisioned it thus far. Most parts of my life seem to be influx at the moment.

Training has been picking up but motivation and eagerness to get out there has been subpar... could be weather related? Could be time to move on to another passion of mine? Not sure. Two other pieces of my life are currently in deciding factor. And at times like this, I am extremely thankful for my family for being my core. You know what they say... home is where the heart is. I don't always show it but I never forget it.

So why 7 years? Well, as I reflect back on my life, the last 6 years has been great! I am crossing every finger and toe that somehow this 7th year will turn itself around. In my heart, I feel that it will, but my mind has always been more impatient than my heart. I've always been fortunate enough to live a "charmed" life where things just work themselves out and work out for "charmed" life.. please don't let me down now!

I think the best thing to do is put my best foot forward and take this current period of my life as a chapter on "faith and patience."

Much love.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Finally.. divorced!

Mark this day! February 10th, 2011, the day I finally divorced the San Francisco Bay Club! It attracts you with their top shower facilities, the sauna steam, the hot tub, the two pools where I am often swimming alone in, and the treadmills with a view. I said goodbye to it all ... I traded it all for the luxury of running outside..on a new favorite run route.. I will spend more time at two other pools and I will suck it up at the campground like showers at Breakaway Fitness twice a week for the next few months. And I may get into work a little later than usual here and there but that'll be okay because I divorced the Bay Club.. more money back in the bank!

Done and done!