28 August 2008


I was just visiting one of my favorite daily reads, The Daily Coyote and noticed in the twitter something about a dog injury from a Four Paws toy. And since I haven't written a ranty post lately I figured it was time! :P

I often am very disappointed in the quality of products, not just toys but food and care products as well, that are produced and sold for pets. One example I have personally is trying to purchase cat toys WITHOUT catnip. Morris can't handle it. He gets crazy and nasty and remains that way for hours. So I don't like to buy anything with catnip in it. Have you ever tried to find out what exactly is in the toys your are buying?? It is nearly impossible to discern what has catnip and what doesn't. And if you can actually find someone that works in the store, they have no idea if it does or doesn't.

Often it seems to me that many of the companies that make animal products don't really care very much about the impact of the product. If they did we would not have the dog and cat food that we have and we would not have lost thousands of pets last year to poisoning. We as consumers need to be more aware of how the products are made, what goes in them and whose products we purchase.

This big fellow, Chai, was playing with a Four Paws Pimple Ball with Bell and got the ball lodged on his tongue. The suction grew worse and his person dad could not remove it. He rushed Chai to the vet and ultimately Chai's tongue had to be amputated. As a result, he has created a blog about Chai to warn others about the balls because he was not receiving the response he wanted from the company. Here is a quote from his blog:

"I sent this information along with the reference to Petunia the french bulldog to Four Paws Inc, and it is their position that there just aren’t enough instances to do anything about this. I told their Insurance company’s case manager that was not a good enough excuse, It was inferred that my dogs value wasn’t much and that his pain and suffering don’t count as he is just a piece of property."

I know that many people who don't have pets or have never had one, don't necessarily understand a pet owner's point of view. Similarly, they don't understand the importance of a pet and the love, companionship and joy that they bring into our lives. But to knowingly keep a product on the shelves that has harmed several dogs and killed at least one, is immoral. If one person's child is harmed by a product, even if it is a result of negligence on the part of the person supervising a child, the product is recalled. We have !Caution! !Extremely HOT! on coffee cups and now get lukewarm "hot" beverages because some genius placed the coffee cup between her thighs, spilled it and sued McDonalds because she was burned.

According to the American Pet Products Manufacturing Association 63% of all households have pets which equates to approximately 69 million households. Within that, Americans have approximately 73 million dogs, 90 million cats, 139 million freshwater fish, 9 million saltwater fish, 16 million birds, 18 million small animals and 11 million reptiles. Like many things in this country, people are accepting status quo because they either don't realize they can make a difference or feel like they can't make an impact.

Please take time today to check the toys you have for your pets and remove any Four Paws products. It may seem extreme, but if one product is bad how can we trust that any of the other products aren't dangerous?

25 August 2008

Lorain Triathlon - 8/24/08 - how NOT to eat shot blocs!

A few months ago I volunteered for a tri in Lorain with NCN racing. I had worked the run aid station and listened to MANY complaints about the course. Either it wasn't marked well enough or it was hard or both. Some complained about the bike as well. So when I cashed my volunteer race voucher in for the tri this past Sunday I knew what I was in for. :)

I had checked out the course maps online on Saturday afternoon to make sure I had some idea where I was going. In all of the races I've done, (all 3 :P ) the first I had a part in T1 so there wasn't anyone to follow out on the bike, the second I took forever to "run" a mile and there wasn't anyone to follow on the bike so this one I was preparing for being alone on the ride.

I got up early after getting in a few hours of sleep the night before. Got all of my stuff together and Steve and I were out the door by 6:25am. I got all the way to Lorain and made my left onto Erie to catch the bridge. But the bridge was closed!!! There wasn't anything on the website indicating that the bridge was closed. :( I saw several others approaching the bridge as I was turning around searching for an alternate path. I finally made it to the race site around 7:30am.
We did the typical unloading and tire checking and then walked up to the transition area and I headed over to the registration table. After getting marked and forgetting to get my chip I headed over to transition where I met up with Sara and later saw JenC. It is always nice to see smiling and familiar faces.

My BS was kind of low when I got up that am (74) so I had wanted to check again before the race. But with only about 20 mins to spare, I figured that I should get things together and head down to the beach to fill up my bucket and get in line for the swim. I almost forgot my goggles!! so I had to turn back for those.

As I was standing with my CTC chicas on the beach I realized that I hadn't had any sport beans. I always down a pack of sport beans pre-race so that by the time I hit the bike they kick in and the extra carbs help push me along. I have to refuel more frequently that others because of how my body works (or doesn't! ;) ) and I haven't mastered taking in fuel on the bike, plus to have fuel for the bike I need to consume it at least 20 minutes before.

I start the swim and it feels like my timing bracelet is falling off of my ankle. So I stop and reattach it and get moving. The swim was good. I felt a little more tired than usual and really pulled with my arms. The waves were a bit bigger than I had expected so I just tried to go with it.

I was trying to make myself do as much freestyle as I could so I was working harder than my last tri swim. But all in all it felt good. I came out of the water and walked up the beach. I was trying to get my heart rate under control and running up the beach and then hill to T1 wasn't going to do that.

S: 15:52.25

T1 is still a struggle for me to get through quickly. I realized at this point that if I didn't eat something I probably wouldn't be able to finish the race. I grabbed a pack of shot blocs and ripped it open. I hate having the shot blocs all over my teeth forever after I eat them so I have begun biting them in half and swallowing the half whole. This day I decided that one really wasn't that big and I could probably swallow it whole. HA!!! BIG MISTAKE. I grab one throw it in my mouth with a big gulp of water and swallow. The sticky bloc quickly gets lodged deep in my throat. I start swallowing hard and realize that it truly is stuck. I don't think I've ever been choking before. In my head I think, "Ok stay calm! keep trying to drink and swallow. they are sugar, eventually it will start to dissolve." I also was reassured because the ambulance wasn't that far from me so I could always get help if I needed it. I started to feel breathing constriction and just kept drinking and swallowing. Finally, it broke free and I could breathe. Success!!!

I took a minute to breathe and relax some and then I threw on my shoes, helmet and sunglasses and started walking over to the exit.

T1: 06:05.45

The bike was decent. I felt tired and I was really struggling for the first 5 miles or so. Once the shot blocs started to kick in I could feel a change in my legs and I felt like I had more energy. There is one really steep hill which unfortunately isn't as steep on the way down. I was also a bit confused because I had remembered that for the sprint course you took all rights, but my first turn was a left so I started to get a bit confused. All in all the bike went well. I wish I had been faster on the first few miles but I was happy with my performance and time for the length of the course (14.3miles).

I still haven't mastered shifting. I set my bike up on my trainer today and watched the gears move as I shifted. I thought that if I pushed my shifter in all the way once my rear deraileur would move all the way to the top. Silly me! I didn't realize that I had to push three times. Yesterday, I was getting super frustrated because all the gears I could find were either too easy or too hard. Because I was only shifting between 5 gears, not ten. So next race hopefully I will figure this out! :)

B: 1:02:50.25

As I returned to transition I saw Steve standing on the side of the road and he started clapping. I got back to transition and walked over to my spot. He eventually made his way over and asked if I was going to run or walk the run. I was beat and the humidity was taking its toll. I knew that running would kick my heart rate up higher and probably not get me to the end any quicker than walking.

T2: 03:41.75

So I set out on the run in a light jog and then Steve met up with me near the car and we started walking. I was walking pretty fast so he was lagging back a bit because he hadn't had any breakfast and was super hot and thirsty. He stuck to the outside of the course and we chatted back and forth a bit.

It was mostly all in the sun and the humidity was really getting to me. I just kept a steady pace, determined to finish. I will say that this was probably the hardest run for me so far. When I woke up that morning, I had no desire to do the race. Everything kept going wrong and then the bridge incident plus waking up on the wrong side of the bed, I wasn't even confident that I would finish honestly. I went into the race thinking, just go and enjoy it and when it starts to really really suck you can stop if you want.

R: 55:13.40

total: 2:23:43.10

Having Steve shadowing me and chatting really helped get me to the end. I'm glad that I finished but I don't think I will do this one again. I hate being critical of RDs or races, especially when it was free for me, but I just didn't feel like things were very organized. The only support for directions on the bike course was the Lorain PD. They were awesome and cheering for people but I was surprised there weren't any volunteers on the course. Also, the only time you saw a sign on the course was at the actual turn. I often was slowing up at intersections to read the small street signs to see if this was one of the streets I was supposed to turn at. I was kind of annoyed that no mention of the bridge being closed was on the website or that an email wasn't sent out. Apparently, the bridge reconstruction was in the PD but I don't often read that paper so I had no idea until I got there. The fact that I saw 5 other cars on the way to the race going the wrong way means that I'm not the only one who didn't know.

Great job to all the CTCers that were there!!!! We had a great showing of participants and volunteers!!!

24 August 2008

eating my words......

Things started to take a change with Isabel on Friday. We have decided that we just need to be more supportive and give her some more time. Yesterday we bought a few baby gates and stacked them so we can open the door to Steve's room and Isabel and Morris can see each other and talk and poke through the gates.

Things are moving along, slowly but surely and they both are starting to feel like things are good with another cat around. :) Obviously, it will continue to take time as we introduce two adult cats who are used to very different circumstances.

So for now, Isabel stays! Yeah! :) I didn't want to send her back to the rescue.

I'm off to bed after a long race and then a long afternoon with family and friends. Race report will be coming soon! Hope everyone had an awesome weekend!!!

22 August 2008

weekend prep!

Sunday I have the Lorain Tri! I looked at the course map today so I knew where I was going. I worked another tri in Lorain (same course I believe) a few months ago and had alot of complaints about the course not being marked or difficult to follow. I totally understand that sort of frustration but I also think that we have to check things out beforehand so we are informed racers!!! Just to be safe, I'm going to print out directions for the bike and ziptie them to my bike so I don't get lost. I need every minute I can get people! :P

Here are the stats for the bike:

Here are the stats for the run:


Hopefully things won't be too bad! I'm also hoping that it isn't a terribly humid weekend. (fingers crossed)

So tomorrow, I get a new dryer. Hopefully, I was specific enough about what I need that I get the same thing I have now. The fridge was such a disappointment, a slap in the face really. June would never have bought something like that. It isn't practical; it is sooo small! There is so much money left in the estate, why scrimp on something as necessary as a fridge? I digress! More finger crossing for a good dryer with multiple temperature settings. I mean that isn't too much to ask!

Then my neighbors invited us for a cookout on Saturday evening! Dana and JT moved in a few months after I did. They have two adorable little girls that are always pretty much full of giggles and smiles so that should be fun! :)

Sunday I have the tri (EARLY) and then Steve and I will return home, shower and head over to my friend Chrissy's house for a BBQ. Her parents are coming as well as mine and my gram. It will be nice to see my nephew Jak, since I haven't seen him since June. Little ones grow soooo fast!

Steve is going to the NIN concert tonight and mom wants to do dinner. I have to do some things for work this afternoon and I figure I can wash all my race stuff that is hang dry today so I can pack everything up tonight. I just feel better on race morning when everything is in my bag! :)

Enjoy the weekend everyone!!!

21 August 2008

learning and growing

Yesterday I spoke to the woman from the rescue where we got Isabel. She was very disappointed in us. I truly believe that Isabel needs more than we can give her right now. She has experienced a significant amount of change (aka trauma) over the past 4-6 weeks and I really think that a single cat home would be best for her. I called the rescue this morning and left a message asking her to call me back. It is a heartbreaking decision to make but I think it is best for her and us.

Now Steve wants to get a kitten. I think I need to talk to him more about what to expect. He seemed to think, regardless of all of my warnings, that this transition would go more smoothly for her. I will say that I'm incredibly surprised by Morris' progress. The first few days were kind of difficult but after about 5 days he started to become more interested in her and seemed curious and excited to be making a new friend.

I'm not someone who gives up - on anything - so this is a difficult thing for me to do. Giving her back is the right thing though. The decision wasn't completely mine because she is Steve's cat. He realized that she needed more nurturing and attention than he was able to provide. She has alot of healing to do and needs to be the companion of someone who has more experience with that. It makes me sad but we have learned alot from this and hopefully Steve will bounce back and find the perfect kitty for him!

18 August 2008

animal adventures

Things with the new cat aren't going so well. :( She pretty much HATES Morris and being confined in one room. I can understand the confinement but not the other issue; I mean she was with seven other cats and I know at least one was a male. I don't know! Obviously we will have to wait and see.

Tonight after another cat "bonding" session I was getting ready for bed and went looking for Morris. I found him in the living room half under the couch. He often "hides" but forgets to hide his whole self. So I tried to figure out what he was doing. I went to pick him up and he scurried under the couch to the other side. So I knelt down on the floor and looked under the couch from behind it. There was one of the toss pillows under the couch in between us. He was staring at it intently and I noticed something fuzzy on top of it. I thought it was one of his toys so I tipped the pillow towards him and all of a sudden this thing flies out from under the couch and right in front of my face and starts flying around in circles!!!

I started screaming and ran into the hallway and started screaming for Steve to get up, that there was a bat in the house!!! Yep' that's right a B.A.T!!!!

He was all confused and I recounted my story like this:

"Ssstteevvee IwastryingtogetMorristogotobedandtherewasthisthingunderthecouch (deep breath) anditstartedflyingincirclesandididn'tknowwhattodo (deep breath) andandandthere'sa!baaaaat!!!"

He looked kind of confused and then he saw it and started freaking out (this kid calls me to kill spiders). Then he was like where is Morris and I said in the living room and then I thought of how bats can have rabis and he could bite Morris and then I would have to put him to sleep. (Cut me some slack people, you try not being overdramatic when you have a bat circling the dining room and living room at midnight on a Sunday!)

So Steve grabbed his carrier and I ran into the kitchen and grabbed a bag of his treats and started shaking the bag and calling him. Thank god Morris loves his greenies more than chasing a bat!

So we grabbed Morris and the phone and went in the hall. I called my mom hysterical and recounted the story this time without breathing and then of course started crying cuz what else is there really to do at that point!

I have dealt with getting rid of bats before but that was in the day time and in North Carolina. So I was pretty sure that I couldn't catch the bat with only a broom. Oh and here is my mother, "Don't you have some kind of net?"

"Oh yeah mom, I'll just grab my trusty butterfly net!!!"

So she finally calms me down and gets me some 24 hour exterminators. I was finally able to get one of them and about an hour later the critter man came and caught the bat.


Currently, I believe we are bat free and hopefully we can stay that way! Who knew Cleveland Heights had such friendly bats?!

14 August 2008

this is a test

The other night I realized I needed a BUNCH of things for Morris. The cat store that I usually go to was closed by this time so I had to run up to Petco instead. This store usually has cats from the APL or other shelters that they are trying to adopt out. So we usually check them out on the rare occasions we are there. As we approached the cages, this little orange and white cat started crying and reaching through the cage. I asked the lady that was feeding them if I could take her out. She instantly started purring and was just so cute. Not cute enough that I wanted her or anything but super cute! (I don't really want anymore cats!)

So my brother was standing there and he gets all smiles and is petting her and just so in love. And then it happened, "Can I get her?!" I didn't know what to say at first. I wanted to be like "HELL NO!" So I listened to his pleas and attempts at logic and said ok. I filled out the application and told him that we would have to talk to the rescue group she was from and that if her and Morris could get along and he took care of her than it would be ok.

Steve has been wanting to get a pet for a while now and I've been mulling the idea over. He definitely can't get a dog because he isn't home enough and it is soooo much responsibility. So we have had a few conversations about the cat (who is already named) I told him honestly how I felt and what my concerns were. There is already a waiting list for her so I knew that if we didn't take her she wouldn't have to wait long for a new home.

Tuesday evening I got a message from the rescue group letting me know that Casey's people mom was dying from stage 4 breast cancer and that she had to give up her animals because she was preparing to go to hospice in a few weeks. My heart just broke. I was the one who held Max as June said her goodbyes before she went into the hospital. I can't imagine how hard it must be to give up your beloved animals.

I still was feeling uneasy about the whole thing and how Morris would adjust, that I don't really care for cats (except my cat of course), if Steve really would be able to care for her, the extra expense after just being laid off, etc. etc. So we have discussed it length and the rescue people were awesome about giving me info on how to slowly introduce her into our house, more importantly Morris' house! ;)

Today Steve is going to pick up his first pet. I'm worried but I think this might be a great learning experience for all of us. This is the biggest responsibility he has ever had! I'm so worried that he isn't going to take it seriously. But I think I have to let him try it at least. How can you grow and become more responsible if you aren't given the opportunity?

I think it will be good for Morris too. He has been the King of the castle for almost 5 years now and because of his very poor condition when I found him, has always been very attached to me. I have been wanting a dog for a while now and maybe having a new cat sister will help ease him into cohabiting with other pets. Plus, I always feel like he gets soooo lonely when I'm gone for a long day! Now he will have a playmate. A MUCH smaller playmate, which is another concern but I guess I have to let it go and see what happens.

Here are some pics from the shelters website of Casey aka Isabelle:

She is soooo little compared to the giant that Morris is. She can't possibly weigh more than 5-7 pounds! She is around 3 years old and a long hair (yuck!) with a very sweet disposition. Apparently, 90% of all orange cats are males so that makes her more unique!

Wish us all luck! I have a feeling we are going to need it, badly!!!

12 August 2008

GCT 2008 Part 3: My T1 PR!

I started the 'swim/run' at the back of the pack. I had no real expectations that I was going to run very fast (or very much! :P). So I hung back and walked most of it.

I got into T1 and thought of everyone who had reminded me to PR in T1 today. :) I grabbed some water (cuz I still haven't mastered DWC [drinking while cycling] ) and changed my shoes. Like Jack, I was having some clip issues but finally got going.

The bike was challenging for sure. Once I got out of the park, I saw my crazy ladies, Beth, Melissa and Elizabeth jumping up and down and yelling like crazy! I couldn't help but laugh, shake my head and smile! :) Because there were 4 distances, I had all different levels of athletes on the course with me. Everyone was really nice and encouraging as they passed. Just before the first big hill, Amie came around me and we exchanged hellos.

I was really unsure of this ride. I had wanted to ride the course once before the race and didn't have a chance. I'm kind of glad I didn't because I don't know if I would have had the guts to follow through with the race. The course overall was challenging; the hills were steep in some spots and the concrete was not kind to my lady parts AT ALL! I in fact thought that when I got off my bike that my vag was going to fall off, seriously!

I only had a few run ins with unkind cars; one that honked at myself and four other cyclists while trying to run us off the road. I did have some weird run ins with other participants. Knowing that I'm a slower cyclist, I stuck as close to the cones as I could so I wasn't int he way. On my way back down Heisley, I heard this woman yell, "On your right! Right, right!" And I started moving right because we are supposed to pass on the left. Then I realized what I was doing and quickly veered left to get out of her way. No sooner was I left and instantly, I heard, "On your left!!!" I was being passed by a pack of 5 riders and instead of them all passing on the left they split around me sending two of the cyclists off the course and into the road and the other three passing on my left in a group. The guys on my left were two abreast with one following them. It was very weird and disorienting.

I was feeling pretty good throughout the ride until I got to the aide station on my way back into the park. I hardly coasted on this course because there was very few areas that were flat for a long period of time. Once I got back on Heisley the wind was really getting stronger and I kept as low as I could (wishing I had aerobars most of the time). On the straight aways I could coast for a bit and when I do, it is just my nature to extend my right leg. As I passed the aide station, I started feeling this knot growing just behind my knee at the top of my calf. I kept extending my left leg, pushing my heel down as far as I could but I couldn't get it to loosen up.

I made my way back into the park and saw my mom and my crazy cheering squad! Those girls are seriously the best and the nuttiest! :)

I got off my bike and the minute my left foot touched the ground, I felt a pain that started at my heel and traveled all the way up to my hip. I walked into T2 changed my shoes, put on my visor and grabbed my water bottle. As I racked my bike, I got my rear derailuer stuck in the front tire of the bike next to mine. So that took some time to maneuver before I could leave.

As I went out the course I saw Rob Reddy and Pam which is always nice to see smiling faces. I did a pretty good walk/run combo for the first mile. My left leg was killing me so I kept stopping at all of the fence posts to stretch. I got to the turn around and made my way back in. I attempted to the the walk/run but spent most of my time walking. As I made my way back into the park, there was this loud cheering and clapping. You guessed it! There were my ladies running towards me! They asked how I was doing and gave some great advice and encouragement. I saw Paul and Aimee near the end of my run and both looked great!

Mom met me just near the shoot and I ran (running limp) into the finish. I was greeted by Cat and chatted with her for a bit.

After I changed and grabbed some gatorade, I got to chat with Jen and Matt C, JT, Nancy, Paul, Charlie and so many others! It was such a great race and Mickey and Pam along with all of the volunteers worked so hard to make it great! Congrats to all the CTCers that were out there this weekend and many thanks to all who helped out!!!

R(S): 16:46
T1: 4:52
B: 58:59
T2: 3:36
R: 56:04

total: 2:20.17

max speed: 20.6
avg speed: 12.5
5k pace: 18:02 (my slowest ever! :( )

11 August 2008

GCT 2008 Part 2: My 1st Duathlon

"The swim's been canceled!"

After all the talk on the forum lately (as a result of Steelhead's swim cancellation), I thought he was joking at first. Maybe I just hoped he was joking.

I said, "You're kidding right!?"

"Nope. Coast Guard canceled the swim."


The decision was the right one, just not in my favor or the one that I wanted. I grew up on Lake Erie. My grandfather always had boats and as a result I spent my summers out on Lake Erie. I have seen a great day go to hell in a few minutes. Lake Erie has power that many overlook and on a day like yesterday, even the strongest swimmers would have struggled. I knew if I had been out there I would have spent more time trying to swim back to my line than actually swimming forward on the course. The under tow was strong, the waves were at least 3-5 and the caps were plentiful.

For anyone new to my blog or who doesn't know me, running is my least favorite thing to do. As result, it is the thing I 'practice' the least. In fact, until yesterday, I haven't been running in at least two weeks. And believe me it shows. However, I love the swim and the bike and am much better at those as a result. Plus, nothing warms up my muscles and joints better than a great swim.

Since I was already feeling tight and twingy in my back, I knew that the 1 mile run wasn't going to do much to help me today.

I unpacked my transition bag and grabbed all my swim related things and threw them on the backseat. I checked my tires and headed off for body marking.

Because the swim was canceled, the sprint would do a 1 mile run, 12 mile bike and 5 k run. Unfortunately, we didn't start til 8:30am. I got to chat with friends (Melissa, Beth, Amie, Janet, Brandon, Paul, Julia, Nancy and others) and hug JenC before it all began! Then I sat on the ground and stretched and cheered for everyone as they left.

Everyone looked great on his/her way out! Janet, as always looked strong and ready to tackle the bike and JenC's new ride is waaaaay hotter in person!

Jack ran into some trouble with his cleats which delayed his bike for some time. Finally, he got things under control and was off. He still did a great job in spite of the snafu!

At 8:15am they called everyone over to begin the run!

GCT 2008 Part 1: Weekend begins with tummy troubles and cold weather

Yesterday was the GCT! This weekend was sooooo much fun; exhausting but fun. Saturday morning I woke up around 4:30am and had a quick breakfast, jumped in the shower and started to get ready to head over to the GCT Youth Tri. I was good till about 5:15am. Then I got super super sick and thought I was NEVER going to make it to the Youth Tri! :( Finally, around 7:00am my stomach started to settle down and I threw on some clothes, stopped for gas and made my way over to Mentor.

The Youth Tri was awesome and soo much fun to watch! All of the kids did great and worked so hard!

After the Youth Tri, I stuck around and helped with packet pick up. That was super fun, because I got to see lots of people I haven't seen in a while.

Saturday night, I didn't get much sleep. I had only had about 4 hours the night before so I took a nap around 4:30pm for an hour and 15mins. Then I got up and started getting my stuff together for the next day. Did some laundry, watched the olympics for a bit, the weather (I knew the cold front was going to have some major effects on race day, but still was hoping for the best!) and finally got in bed around 12:30am. Around 1am I woke up feeling tight through my hamstring. I knew wearing my dumb crocs wasn't the best idea with a race the next day, but I didn't think that standing around for 6 hours would really be an issue. I would have worn my running shoes, but I didn't want to get them FULL of sand the day before a race!

I got up and went in the living room to stretch and use the foam roller on my back, hamstring and IT. 20 minutes later I was back in bed. I woke up around 4:45am and totally didn't want to get out of bed. I had everything ready to go but was a bit nervous. In the short time that I did sleep I had a dream that I got all the way to the race and when I got to transition realized that I had forgotten my bike at home! :( So needless to say, I was double checking EVERYTHING to make sure I didn't forget a thing! ;)

Mom and I made our way to Mentor and found a place to park. I started unloading my stuff from the car: transition bag, bucket, bike pump, bike. There was a buzz in air; I could tell that while everyone was groggy people were still pumped!

I saw Ben Miralia walking down our aisle and heard the words that I had been dreading since seeing the lake the day before.......

05 August 2008

and the winner is...

C!!! ok so only four votes but still! ;)

So here is the deal, course A is the GCT sprint course that I have to ride this weekend. B is the Fairport Harbor course that I did a few weeks ago and I only remember one small small hill. And C is the ride I did this Sunday, which was supposed to be longer but I got too tired and I wasn't hydrated enough and I haven't been eating right or testing! My brother wasn't thrilled when I told him I was turning around, but such is life.

And yes that hill at the end is a killer and I got about half way and was around 9-11mph and felt like I might die so I said screw this! I turned around went back to the bottom unclipped and proceeded to walk up the bridle trail that runs next to the road. Which by the way was not fun because A. who knew they paved the bridle trails in concrete!?! and B. the dirt that HAD been over it was now all shifted and packed to the sides creating this narrow valley in which I had to maneuver my stupid shoes (the hatred continues) and my bike. No fun, but I guess I felt a little better about it than tackling the hill at the end of my ride! :)

All this hilliness kind of got me worried for the race this weekend. I don't expect all tris to be easy, but I guess I was hoping for a more flat course like Fairport. ;) I will do what I can and walk if I have to. Hopefully, I will feel invincible like my last tri and I won't even notice the hills! :) Also, I had very little problems with my clips at the race but Sunday I just couldn't seem to get the right one in. I think there was some psych out going on too because of the major intersections I had to cross. All of them were only two way stops and the speed limit on the roads is 35 but people tend to do 40-45.

I'm hoping that I can at least get half of the course in before Sunday. I'm only working one job now so I have more free time (a la two blog posts in less than 12 hours) so hopefully I can fit it in. May days this week are pretty chopped up though. Meetings around 9am then nothing again till 3pm, work until 8pm. I'm think that if I can get out of my meeting early tomorrow am, I can swing by the house and zoom out to Mentor, ride and then zoom home by 3pm.

Tonight I have a swim on tap after pilates. Just in the pool though. :( I have no swimming partner for OWS, plus I would be able to get to the lake until 7:30-7:45pm. *sigh* Ok I'm off to do some laundry and write a few cover letters. I know you are all super jealous! ;)

what's your vote?

Of the following, which bike course looks the most difficult, factoring in elevation only???



Two of the courses up here I have completed. One is an upcoming race I have and I just looked at the map today but I haven't ridden the course yet. I'm a bit freaked out!

So bloggy friends, which one is the killer course???

03 August 2008

Burning River 100 Miler

First, I want to thank everyone for so many positive responses on my last post. I wasn't sure how it would be received so I was pleasantly surprised! :)

Last night Steve and I went down to the Boston Store to volunteer for the aide station at the Burning River 100 Miler. We worked the last shift. It was Steve's first time volunteering at any sort of race event and he really enjoyed himself so hopefully he will think of doing it again! :)

The weather was wonderful!!! The rain we had the night before brought a ton of bugs out though so we were all spraying the bug spray and sticking close to the torches.

My friend Melissa was a participant. At 11:15 I had lost communication with Beth and couldn't find out if where Mel was or how she was doing. We had quite a few people drop and I was sooooo worried that the darkness would dampen her spirit. When I finally got home, I rushed to my laptop to see where she was. The site showed her up to 85 - that made me exhale a huge sigh of relief. Beth texted me a couple of times throughout the night. I left my phone next to my bed so I would wake up from any incoming messages. And then this morning, I got the news that she had finished!!!!!

Congrats Mel I'm sooooo proud of you!!!!! :)

ESpeed was our aide station captain and Laura was also helping to keep order. These two gals did such an amazing job!!! ESpeed was running around making sure that all was well and that things were running smoothly!

Congrats to all the participants! Regardless of your times or finishing, you all did an amazing job! This is really such an unbelievable undertaking! Be proud of your training and your efforts yesterday and today!!!

Now I'm off for a ride and then to the parents' house for dinner! Friday was my last day at ESI. I know they will be calling (frequently) for things but it was still kind of sad to close a two year period. I hadn't always loved every aspect of my job but I did like the people I worked with. Tomorrow, I have the handy man coming because I was having outlet problems Saturday! I thought for sure there was about to be a fire!!!

I hope all of you have had a wonderful weekend and enjoyed the great weather!!!