As always Christmas goes too fast. There was something different about this year and I can't quite put my finger on it. We all wanted this year to be extra special. The reason is that next year Bino will not be here with us but most likely overseas somewhere with the Army in a tank.
The gifts were all chosen with extra thought and care. There was not one that was without meaning. I received many that I will hold close to my heart. The one that I will keep close to me was from Bino. It was an Army bear. It had a special bag. When I opened it Bino said, "Next year Mom when I am not here and you miss me just give the near a hug." WOW. Talk about the tears running down your cheeks.
House's gift blew me away also. It was a newspaper article written about my father who is 87. The photos is of him holding my kids pictures in his living room. House had it laminated and framed for me. Again---WOW.
Hooch and her boyfriend also made me smile with a set of special penguins for my collection. They are awesome.
I believe Christmas is not about the gifts but in this case the meaning behind all the gift made it different. Every Chistmas I feel that this one is the most memorable but again I think this one is it.
Waddling after a great Christmas day.........
Sunday, December 27, 2009
As always Christmas goes too fast. There was something different about this year and I can't quite put my finger on it. We all wanted this year to be extra special. The reason is that next year Bino will not be here with us but most likely overseas somewhere with the Army in a tank.
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:04 PM
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 12:12 PM
Saturday, December 05, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:17 AM
Thursday, December 03, 2009
This morning , Snips and I tried out a group fitness class called "Total Conditioning". It seemd like a good time to improve strength. After completing an Iron race, How hard could it be??
At 530am, we walked into the studio and piled up almost every type of equipment next to us. There was a mat, steps, weights, bands and medicine ball. OMG. We are in trouble. We were blaming each other for being there. Whose idea was this? Not mine , I am sure. I hate strength training. The music began and it started with 125 pushups. Pain...
It was a real reality check. After 45 minutes, I thought that I would puke. What is going on? Finally I heard the words -Cool Down. Thank heaven. I was soaked in sweat. I now know what I need to work on.
Waddling with sore muscles.......
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:43 PM
Sunday, November 29, 2009
I think now after 3 weeks that I have had a chance to fully reflect on my race. For days it did not seem real. There were alot of congratulations and great jobs but I don't think that I really got it. I do now. I really did it.
Today, I was back in the pool and it felt great. After my race, I have done pretty much nothing as far as workouts. I have put back on 4 pounds. Although I have enjoyed not having the pressure to workout, I have felt sluggish, unmotivated, and not as happy.
My routine is penciled in for December and my 2010 races are falling into place. The my motivation is increasing proportionally to my planning process. There are no Iron Races but there will be a half-Iron. Also a possibility of another marathon.
I think that I spend hours researching possible races. I go to the triathlon calendar for all the surrounding states andsearch for the right distances that fit my schedule. June will be a sprint. July will be an Olympic. August is undecided. That sets up for my half in September. So my thought are a December marathon. Again these are all in pencil.
The excitement is building for 2010.
Waddling with a pencil....
Posted by IronWaddler at 10:56 AM
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
It's hard to believe it's been 2 weeks since B2B. Life has still been incredibly busy even with the lack of training. Hooch opens her business this week so all the final things are being put in place.
I have been told of the Post Race blues or depression but I have found none of that. I am excitedly planning my 2010 season. There will be no Iron distance next year but I will not rule it out for 2011. The year will start in March with a half Marathonn. I also will do a half Iron and possibly another marathon.
I am feeling good. the only minor irritation is some plantar fasicitis. My right heel makes it hard to walk in the morning. Any suggestions are appreciated? Wondering if one of those special socks work?
Tomorrow, I am heading back to the pool. My new tattoo is ready to face the water. I am suprised how excited that I am to swim again. Masters swim will start after the holidays so I best be ready for Coach.
The best of this week is that my dad is here from Ohio for Thanksgiving week. It will be an extra special one for our family as Bino will be in in the Army next year and most likely overseas. Every moment will be cherished.
Finally, congrats to Running Jayhawk, who completed IMAZ yesterday. Great job-you rock girl. I am so proud of you
Waddling to spend time with dad...............
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:52 PM
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
I sat in the T2 tent changing and trying to regroup for the run. My garmin was messed up so I only had an estimate of the time that I had to run the marathon. I thought it was alittle over 7 hours. I headed through transition to run and TriSharkie was walking toward me. I knew she was way ahead of me but did she finish? No, she had chest discomfort on the bike thus spent an hour in the medical tent. After an EKG, she promised to "walk the marathon". We both headed out on the run course. TriSharkie moving much faster than me.
My plan for the run was to do a 5 minute run : 1 minute walk. The bike had taken much more out of me than I had hoped. From doing previous marathons, my fear was to bonk and not finish. I wasn't sure how much was left in the tank. I reversed the ratio to a 5 walk: 1 run. My nutrition went out the window also. The thought of any more Infinit flipped my stomach. I ditched my fuel belt and used the aid stations that were well stocked with bananas, oranges,grapes, pretzels, flat Coke, chicken broth, and water. It was like a buffet.
The run course was an out and back half marathon done twice. I liked it alot. The first loop I never felt like I was by myself. I absorbed everything along the route. I saw House, Bino, and Hooch all at different points on the course. The course went past the Hilton (host Hotel) 4 times. Each time that I went by there and the crowd that was there, I gained new energy.Everything was good except the clock was running out. Unlike the bike course, I was not hitting any low points.
After the turn to my second loop, I grabbed my special needs bag. Luckily, I had thrown in a jacket as the temperature was starting to drop. I also grabbed my glow sticks and reflectors that I had packed. I ran across the bridges toward downtown Wilminton. It all looked so beautiful lit up at night. The darkness of the run and quiet of the night was calming. Maybe too calming.
I reached the turn around in the park to head back to the finish. Now I knew it was game on and I had cut it way too close. When I reached mile 20, I looked at the time on my cell phone. 90 minutes was left to finish. A phrase from an IM Kona came to mind, " I am like Rainman counting toothpicks". With 5 miles left to go, I knew that I had to run the rest of the way to the finish. Although not panicking, I now was on a mission and needed to focus.
As I was running, I fell into a steady pace. I was running back into downtown and past the Hilton. There were still people there bundled up and cheering. It was just what I needed. I still felt good and pushed on still knowing I could make it.
It was with 3 miles to go when the most amazing thing happened. There was a guy on a bike that appeared out of nowhere. He introduced himself as Brent the director of the run course. He told me he would be escorting me to the finish line. I would be the last offical finisher of the race. Holy Penguins!! Here I am with 3 miles to go, 45 minutes left on the clock, and 2 big bridges ahead of me. At this point, I knew I had to dig into a place that I had never been before. Brent called the finish line and let them know that we were on our way.
There were still people on the course cheering. I passed the final aid station with 2 miles to go and did not take anything to save time. I crossed the first bridge with the metal grating. No Problem. Then came the second bridge. It was a steeper, higher incline. I had only walked this and no had no choice but to run up. Brent told me to breathe and focus. He talked me all the way to the top. Once there I looked to my left and could see tha Battleship lit up. He called into the finish line to update our location. He looked at me and said, "You are Iron. I don't know who will cry more at the finish, me or you. At the bottom of this bridge is mile 26. You have time." Chills spred across me body. A certain realization of what I had accomplished came across me. Every emotion of the day flashed in front of me.
I ran down the hill and got to the turn into the park for the finsh and there were my 2 kids waiting with flowers to run me in. Tears started coming down. Brent's voice told me that I had 7 minutes left and to look ahead see the finish lit up.Brent disappeared at this point. I made the final turn with my kids and could see the finish line. There was House, Snips, Sharkie, and Ed waiting for me. I crossed the line and the time was 16:56:16. The announced said, "Karen Mehrbrodt, From Bolingbrook, Illinois- You have reached the Battleship!" I DID IT!!!!!! Less than 4 minutes to spare. And there was House with the finishing medal to put it around my neck! It was the high of a lifetime. Something that no one could take awy from me. I am Iron!!
I learned alot about myself out there on the race course. I travel through every emotion possible. But most of all I found how deep that I could really dig into my inside to achieve something that I really wanted. I know this journey will not end here. It is a new beginning.
My reward was a tattoo on my right shoulder blade because this day was something that no one can ever take away.
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:46 PM
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
After the swim, I was feeling great. The hardest part was done. Or so I thought!
The first 20 miles on the bike were a perfect ride. I had a nice groove going. I was comfortable at 16-19 mph. Which was great but only meant one thing- I had a tailwind. I remember the first aid station was around 25 miles and I was looking forward to a pit stop. It finally showed up at around mile 30. Same break and off I go. Still feeling good. Noticing a cross wind.
Somewhere along here came the "Big Chicken Crossing" . I know-What the hell? Is it alot of chickens that run across or 1 big one? It was a gigantic chicken statue by the side of the rode in a driveway. I am so glad that it did not run out in front of me! Whew.
I divided the course into 10 mile segments. It helped my mind to digest it better. Around mile 50, I knew that in 6 miles I would pass the halfway point and I was still positive. Things would change soon.
After passing mile 60, my stomach was growling. I was ready for that sanwich that was in my special needs bag. I got to the area and a volunteer looked at my number and grabbed my bag for me. I was suprised that there was around 7-8 others still there. I had warmed up alot and threw my arm warms in the bag.Feeling a few minutes of recovery, it was time to get back on the bike and finish this thing.
Now after passing mile 70, there was a right hand turn. Just ahead I saw a sign that read Wilmington 38 miles. Not bad. The other thing that I quickly noticed besides the sign was the cold head wind and gradual incline of the road. This would continue the next 40 mile back to the battleship.
At mile 80, I began having back spasms. There was no way to find a comfortable position. I stopped and leaned against a tree to stretch. My cell phone went of with my hubby's ringtone. I answered and he asked why I had stopped. I was confused. How did he know that I stopped because my tracker quit working. He replied that he was on google earth on real time and saw me pull over. Talk about Big Brother watching. I felt better and rode off again.
The next 32 miles is when every demon came out. I thought that I would be facing these on the run but low and behold here they were. My mind wanted me to quit and dbegan to think of excuses that would sound good. Spin Coach Nick popped into my head telling me to switch the channel in my brain. As much as I tried, I was in a very low spot. I told myself that if I could get off the bike maybe I could just forget the marathon. It went on and on for miles with the lowest spot being at mile 100. I was just so tired and my back hurt.
I saw the bridges ahead that cross the Cape Fear River and knew that the Battleship was nearing. At the top of the second bridge, I could see it and knew that final I would be off this damn bike. What I thought would be the best part of my day became the lowest points.
I saw Bino and Snips as I entered transition. Big hugs and into the changing tent I went. Amazingly there were still people in there. I wasn't last. Again, I took a huge amount of time but made sure I had everything before I headed out.
Bike time including T1= 8:02:43
IronWaddling into the run...
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:28 PM
I had a great nights sleep and my alarm went off at 330am. Wow, the night went fast. Snips was already downstairs and dressed ready to take me to the buses at the Hilton that would take the athletes to T1. We did one more double check of all my bags. It was 4:45am and we went and picked up Tri-Sharkie then to the Hilton. We were the last 2 people to catch the bus. Everyone was very chatty on the bus an it was a quick ride.
First body marking, dropping off special needs bags for the bike & run, then setting up T1. Everything was going smooth until I looked in my Swim-to-bike bag and did not see my Army Bike Jersey. Major panic. No shirt for the ride. I ran back to where I dropped off my other bags and went through everything. No Jersey. As I was trying to think of options, I called Snips back at the house. She calmed me down and sent me back to my Swim-to-bike bag because she saw me put it in there. I took a deep breath. Emptied the entire bag out on to the wet ground. I looked up to see a TV camera coming around the end of the rack. NBC was there filming a ex-Biggest Loser Contestant for a TV special. Great and there I am panicking with my crap all around me. But the good news-there was my Jersey ! First crisis is over.
I went back to setting up my T1. ShirleyPerly stopped by with a tidbit she heard on the bus. When doing the swim the best current was near the right of the channel. When you got near the WigglyMan that marked a left turn you need to get over to the left side otherwise if you were not a strong swimmer you would not make the turn. Great advice as several people last year had to DNF because of this. Mental note made and I went to drop my new beige slippers with flowers off at the swim exit.
Now it was 6:05am. Time to get my wetsuit on and catch the bus to the start. No spectators were allowed at the start. The photo above is of the beach where it starts.THE SWIM
The sunrise was awesome over the channel. The announcements were made followed by the national anthem. I was unusually calm. It almost made me nervous that I was not nervous. Does that make any sense? The water temperature was 67 and the air temperature was 40. The gun went off.
I left everyone run off the beach before me. The water felt great although it tasted very bad since it was salt water. I was bumping in to a few people but most were already way ahead of me. I did not actually feel the current but did notice that I swam from buoy to buoy quickly. I heard people cheering and looked to see the half Iron athletes to my right waiting for their start. A quick glance at my watch showed 00:37. Wow. I made the turn OK at the WigglyMan on the boat but found it had to sight in the channel.
I finally could spot the dock at the swim exit. I got out and was a little dizzy. Sat down and took off my wetsuits and put my slippers on. I tell you everyone was jealous of those shoes for sure. I ran toward the street and turned to T1 and there was my family and Snips cheering!!! I was so happy. Emotion overwhelmed me. I completed a 2.4 mile swim !! I was on my way to be an Ironman ! Tears ran down my face and I gave House a big hug. My swim time was 1:23:56.
I grabbed my bag and went into the changing tent. I took forever but wanted to make sure that I did not forget anything. I ran out and grabbed Sugar. I waved at my supporters and headed out for my 112 mile ride.
IronWaddling to the Bike............
Posted by IronWaddler at 9:38 AM
Monday, November 09, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:26 PM
Sunday, November 08, 2009
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Thursday, November 05, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:47 PM
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
This journey to Beach2Battleship has not a solo effort. Every person that I have been around since last November, when I decided to do this race, has played a part. Before I race, I feel it very important to thank everyone.
To House,my Hubby: You have endure the most including the weekends when I spent hours training and being exhausted rather than spending time with you. I love you and a special thanks for watching all the IM Kona replays 100 times to try to become a part of my world.
To Bino, My son : This race you will be with me because I will be wearing the Army shirt the entire time. Next year when you leave for the military in June, I want you to know that you can do anything and perserve.
To Hooch, my daughter : Thanks for giving me so much love. Your hug after a long ride always healed my body.
To my training partner, TriSharkie: You have been the strength and friend in my training that was always there on those long rides. I can't even express my feeling but was glad that you were there to share them with me.
To Iron Snoopy: Thanks for being the one who I watched at IM Louisville to make me believe that I could do this. Your wrist band "Never give up" has been with me every minute.
To Snips: Thank you for being my rock. You are the most positive person and a great friend. I am thrilled that you will be there on race day.
To Coach Steve: If it were not for you, I would have never learned how to swim. You took a 50 year old that could not swim and now I will be doing a 2.4 mile swim on Saturday.
To all my friends: I am so blessed to have all of you around me. I can't even name all of you and what you have done but many times I ask myself how I got so lucky.
To those who doubt me: Thanks for the constant motivation.
I know that I have not thanked everyone but Thank you if you are reading this for being there.
I will finish because of all of you and as John Blaze said, " I will get there even if they have to roll me across the finish line" . I will roll across the finish line.
Waddling to become IronWaddler..............
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:38 PM
Saturday, October 31, 2009
I am making my way through my taper. It felt like I had plenty of time until the race and now suddenly the countdown is in single digits. There has suddenly become a shortage of hours in the day.
Over the past week, I have gotten alot of great advice. With several friends that are Ironman triathletes, I am blessed to be able to ask alot of questions and get alot of great answers. The common thread to all the advice is that there will be some very low,tough, and challenging moments where you want to quit. To make it through those moments and keep going will get me to the finish.
My emotions have all been positive I feel mainly excitement like you do before Christmas. All the waiting and preparation is almost done. There has been alot of work,time, and effort to put into one day. But that one day, I know will be life-changing because the training already has changed my life.
My son, Bino, handed me a folded note that he wrote today and wants it packed it my running shirt. On the outside is written -"Open this when you need it". I know that note is something that I will forever cherish. This is a photo of him today enjoying Halloween-----
Waddling on Halloween with one week to go........
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:59 PM
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Last weekend was my last big weekend before my taper. It consisted of a 17 mile run on Saturday and a 100 mile bike on Sunday. I felt great and relieved that training was winding down. I was overwhelmed by the emotion when I got off the bike.
What happened this week, my first week of tapering, surprised me. I spent most of the week worrying about details of the trip, House's post-surgery health, work, and other things that were out of my control. On Wednesday evening, I went to bed not speaking to anyone including House. I spent all day Wednesday upset that the trip to North Carolina and everything going on currently should be about me and no one else because I am the one doing an Iron Race!
On Thursday morning, after a great swim with Snips, things came back into perspective. I was angry at being selfish. I felt stupid and petty. After a day at work in which I took care of a 38 year old with Stage 4 lung cancer, I came home and talked with House. I think all the emotion that I was experiencing was a kind of taper anxiety. Maybe I was beginning to look for excuses either not to do it or not to finish. House told me that for the next 2 weeks I need to be selfish to be ready to have the best day that I can.
I know that all the hard training is in the bank. There is nothing I can change at this point in time. Now focus on the final race prep and in 2 weeks from today I will be out there.
Waddling with 2 weeks until Beach 2 Battleship........
Posted by IronWaddler at 1:04 PM
Friday, October 16, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
House is still in the hospital recovering from his surgery on Monday. It was a tough one for him. 7 years ago, he severely fractured his talus bone in his ankle. Now the osteoporosis has created a hole in his ankle. Because of his age, he is too young for an ankle replacement since they only last 10 years. To delay having to do this he had reconstructive surgery. They took bone and bone marrow from his pelvis and mixed it with a ceramic material and surgically fractured his tibia and injected the material into the talus bone. Now we wait and watch for it to grow and repair. Hopefully he will come home maybe tomorrow. Pain control has been the biggest issue.
Thanks for all the prayers and the 2 home cooked dinners that were delivered by friends.
I have been getting my training in early in the morning. This weekend is scheduled to be my biggest one then I taper. I am so ready !
Waddling at the hospital...........
Posted by IronWaddler at 10:44 AM
Monday, October 12, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 7:41 AM
Friday, October 09, 2009
This weekend is the Chicago Marathon. I did not sign up because of ironman training but I will be running. My friend Snips is running it for the second time. I plan on running the first 16 miles with her. The weather is forecast to be a balmy 40 degrees. What a change from the past 2 years. The excitement in the city is unbelievable.
Tomorrow, I will be glued to Ironman Live to watch Kona. I actually know someone there this year and I am so excited for Adrienne. Not only does she get to race, she was given Jon Blais's ashes to spred on the course by his parents. The experience seems overwhelming to me.
Only 4 weeks left until B2B, training is going well. I would like to do 1 more 100 mile ride before the race.
Waddling into the weekend............
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:14 PM
Thursday, October 01, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:48 PM
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Today, I had the day off of work. I needed to catch up on things that I felt like I had fallen behind on. But first came getting training out of the way.
The alarm went off at 445am. I couldn't believe I was gettin up this early on a day off but I wanted to get to the pool and get a bike ride in. As I was getting ready to head to the gym, my mind was heading in a million different directions. What to do first when I get done? Should I get some things done for Hooch's new business? Should I go to see my MIL? What I could do to help House? I forgot to get Bino money for lunch. I calmed myself and headed to the gym.
After finishing my swim warm up, it happened. An anxiety moment. I felt panicked. Word came to my mind that I heard yesterday. You can do everything right in your training and not miss a workout then you might not finish. What the hell was I doing? This was huge what I was training for. I took a deep breathe and resisted the urge to get out of the pool and run out of the gym. Another deep breathe. I stopped myself. Then I remembered what coach said -"Do not let anyone in your head. Focus. I CAN do this. There is only 2 ways that I will not finish B2B. First if I need to go to the medical tent. Second, I do not make the time cutoffs.
I have calmed and relaxed. I had a good day because I know that I can. I believe.
Waddling and believing....................
Posted by IronWaddler at 4:16 PM
Sunday, September 20, 2009
This is one of my favorite races. I was so excited to be taking Snips back to Ohio with me. I was running the half marathon but Snips had chosen to run the Full. On Thursday this week, I had to make a decision. My first choice was to not back my training down and just run it easy as a training day. The other choice was to taper some and see how good that I could do. I picked the second one. So I swam on Thursday and took Friday off.
When Snips and I got to Ohio, we went to the expo and picked up our packets. Then we headed to my dad's house for the weekend.
We had to get up at 430am (which was 330am our time). It was dark and cold(49) when we left. Once we got there we got a great place to park so that dad, who is 88 , would not have far to walk. The full started at 730 which was an hour before my half. At 715, the national anthem was played and the flag was brought it by parachute. This was followed by 2 fighter jets doing a fly by. It was so patriotic. I gave Snips a hug. She was nervous then off she went.
An hour later it was my turn. The repeated the same ceremony was the same fly-by. The temperature was still close to 50. As we started off, I found myself next to the 2:30 pace group. I hoped to run near 2:30 which would be a PR. I have never run with a pace group and thought that I would see how it went. The first 3 miles, I stayed right with the group.
At mile 4, I looked at my Garmin and I was running a 10:15 pace. This was ahead of the 11:27 pace the group should have been running. I decided to drop off and do my own thing. This part of the course took us down by the flight line and the golf course. It brought back many memories of the 2 years that I worked at the base hospital and great lunches at the officers club on the golf course. At mile 6 we were on a shaded lane going past the commander's homes. They were beautiful. I felt great.
As the race approached mile 7, the temperature approached 70 and the shade was gone. I took advantage of every water stop. My pace was beginning to slow but still felt OK. It was at this point the leaders of the marathon began to pass by. They were flying.
When we reached mile 9, we began the hills. They were slow and gradual butt-kicking just the same. While I going up the hill, I saw the sign that said mile 22 for the marathon. I was concerned for Snips but I knew she was tough. My pace had slowed to 12:05. I knew that breaking 2:30 had slipped away.
The final miles were tough. The heat was getting to me as well as the hills. I didn't walk but wanted to more than once. After mile 12, I could see the finish. I came to a water station and normally in the final mile would pass it by but I needed some water to make it to the finish. The last mile took forever to get through. The final .1 mile of this race is the most awesome because it goes through the crowd and in between the airplanes at the Air Force Museum. I knew when I crossed the line that I had nothing left and did the best that I could. My first 2 years here my times were 2:53 and 2:56. As I crossed the line , I ran a 2:33. It was a PR by 8 minutes for me. WooHoo.
Snips also had a great day. she had her 2nd marathon in the books.
The rest of the weekend continued to be awesome. We escorted my dad to a family wedding.
Waddling after a wonderful weekend..............
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:44 PM
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 7:30 PM
Sunday, September 06, 2009
In preparation for the half-Iron, my thought process was this was a training day for my Full. I wanted to try and test out everything that I planned to do in November. My goals were very simple:
- Test for my full
- not drown
- finish vertical, breathing, and smiling
- do it in under 8 hours.
TriSharkie and I drove down on Friday. As we followed the directions to get there, we noticed a theme which was mile after mile of corn fields. We got to packet pick up and I was relieved to see this would be a very low key, relaxed, and non-intimidating race. I turned around when I heard laughter and found Running Jayhawk who is preparing for IMAZ. After grabbing our packets, we headed to the hotel which was a comedy of errors and alot of laughs until we got to the right room. (Not 117).
Although it seemed short, I slept good until the alarm went off at 4am. I got up and ate my oatmeal with whey protein, yogurt, and a banana. We packed up and headed into the darkness. It was a good thing that we had scouted things out the night before. The parking field was lit up be one huge spotlight. TriSharkie and I headed for transition to setup. It was still dark and not lighted. It was challenging to set up.
As it began to get light around 6am, it was cloudy and overcast. When I checked the weather before leaving Chicago, it was supposed to be sunny and in the 70s. I heard the guy next to me talk about possible storms. Just then Jayhawk came up and began setting up next to us in transition. She was so relaxed and full of laughter. Next thing I knew, there were a few announcements and a notice that we will start in 5 minutes.
For the first time ever, I was not freaking out about the swim. The water was very dark and murky but 77 degrees. I wore my sleeveless wetsuit. There were 2 loops keeping the buoys to your right. The men were the first wave followed 3 minutes later by us ladies. Going through the first loop, I found swimmers around me and that I was passing several men. This has never happened before. Not the I was going fast but I was going in the right direction. My sighting was right on for the first time. I felt great the entire swim and at times actually had a nice rhythm. As I was coming of of the water, my watch recorded 59:02. I was thrilled. Very slow for many but amazing for me.
I was very slow but determined to make sure everything was ready for the bike. I put body glide in my socks and they slid on great. Mental Note---do again.
I continued to feel relaxed heading out on the bike. My nutrition was Infinit which I mixed the night before. The course was 2 loops which were very flat through the corn fields. The were several out and back sections where you could see the other riders. The weather continued to be overcast, cool, and no wind. Perfect for the bike. Besides the fact that my chain came off at mile 29 and 41, I was thrilled. I did see TriSharkie and JayHawk several times and they looked great! My time was 3:24 (16.4 mph). Happy Dance.
Again slow but determined to not miss anything. Quick Pit stop then off I go.
The weather continued to be overcast. The course was a 2 loop out anf back. I did not think that I would like this but I did enjoy seeing the other runners and not feeling alone. I used my Galloway pace timer and did a 5 minute run: 1 minute walk. My nutrition was Gu. During the first loop , it began to rain. It kept the temperature cool. I continued my slow and steady pace the entire time. I was passed by many of those that I had passed on the bike. At the turn around to the second loop, I made another pit stop. It began raining harder. As I rounded that last corner with .5mile to go, my garmin read 7:21. Holy Sh*t ! I was going to break 7:30. WooHoo. My run time was 2:56:38 (13:29/mile).
Waddling while vertical,breathing, with a huge smile........................
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:12 AM
Saturday, September 05, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:01 PM
Thursday, September 03, 2009
Today was one of those days that will stick in my head forever. I was able to get off work at noon to enjoy the afternoon with Hooch. She is attending Esthetician & Skin Care School. She is currently is in the clinical phase. I decided to take advantage of this and give myself a treat at the same time.
She was watching for me when I got there and so excited to show what she had learned. The next 90 minutes, I was able just to relax and let her do her thing. I have to say that I knew she was good but she actually was great. (Not because I am Mom). I felt so relaxed and my skin felt great. Another great part was the price. Because it is a Esthetician & Skin Care School , the price for a spa facial and eyebrow wax was $11.50.
Her tip from me after such great service was a great lunch with Mom. I have to say it really blew me away seeing what she had acheived and what kind of person she has become. One of those moments that stays with you.
Waddling after a day with Hooch............
Posted by IronWaddler at 5:51 PM
Sunday, August 30, 2009
My posts have been few and far between with the increased training. Just want to catch up with news in my life.
- House (my hubby) has been keeping his RSD in his right ankle under control with the neurostimulator in his back. There have been new developments. He has been waking in the morning with new aches all over his body. There is a possibility according to his MD that he now has Fibromyalgia. Also the bone pain in his Right ankle where he fractured it has increased. According to the orthopedic surgeon there is now a hole in the talus bone and a fracture. The answer is surgery and trying to take bone marrow from his hip and inject it into the talus bone and hope for bone regrowth. As always we will face these challenges together.
- Hooch (my daughter) is finishing estictician school in November and has an opportunity to set up her own business in an established spa.
- Bino (my son) has just begun his senior year of high school. We are cherishing every minute with him because this time next year he will be in the Army in M1A1 tank school.
As far as for me, I work and I train. there are some days that I miss my family alot. I enjoyed a shopping spree at Naperville running company on Friday. For my tired calves, I bought Zensah sleeves. I have been wearing them after workouts and have slept in them. I LOVE THEM. The other thing for the geek in me is the new garmin 310. I used it yesterday for a long bike and on today's long run. I LOVE IT ALSO.
This week, I am backing down the training to prepare for my Great Illini Half Iron next weekend. I did Steelehad 70.3 last year but the swim was cancelled and a run was substituted so I do not feel that I have truly done a half yet. I feel much more prepared this year so I am excited about it and to see where I am at.
Also this week, I am signing upfor my first race for next year. It's a new one. Rev3 @ Cedar Point Amusement Park in Sandusky ,Ohio. It has a full iron and a half iron. I am signing up for the half. I know it will flat and close to home. I love Cedar Point also.
Waddling into a new week..............
Posted by IronWaddler at 4:50 PM
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Today was another notch in my belt on my Iron journey. It was my first century ride ever! I rode alone as my partner, TriSharkie, was under the weather. After oversleeping, I got out on the route at 7am. It was nicely spread out. Again this week, I did everything that I hope to do in November's race. Infinit was my choice for nutrition. I did stop at 3 of the 5 SAG stops but only grabbed water, half a sandwich, and a pretzel.
I would like to have a great exciting story of my first 100 miles but there is none. There were miles of cornfields, beautiful weather, and a couple of challenging hills. I got it done and averaged almost 15 mph. I was thrilled that I completed the miles but I continue to be concerned about making the time cutoff in November.
Waddling after 100 miles on the bike..............
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:49 PM
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:10 PM
Sunday, August 16, 2009
This weekend had the makings of training big. Plan A was to ride 75 miles on Saturday and run 14 miles Sunday. Tri-Sharkie's plan called for an off weekend and Snips was in Colorado. This meant that I was flying solo. Time for Plan B. Find an organized ride on Sunday and run on Saturday. Great luck- Naperville Rotary Ride on Sunday. I needed 75 miles but they had 55 or 85. I decided that I would go for the 85. Because of this I shorten my Saturday run from 14 to 10 miles. Ready---Set----Go!
I got up early and headed to Waterfall Glenn. I love the trails and the shade. It was so packed already at 7 that both parking lots were full and cars up and down the road. Everyone had my idea! How cute. The run was good.
I had everything ready last night for the ride. Mixed my Infinit. Froze 1 bottle of Infinit and 1 bottle of water. I knew the heat would be on. I was actually really excited to take on the challenge. There was also a part of me that needed to do this alone because that is how it will be in November. I did not want of use any nutrition from the aid stations and make this a test bike of how I do.
I got up and got there really early with alot of time to spare. I ran into TriHardChik in the parking lot. She was doing the 55 with a friend. I got everything together and off I went to try and ride my longest bike ever.
The first 20 miles were very uneventful. The part of the course was familiar from my long rides. the were quite a few who were doing the shorter ride and I could feel their excitement with their achievement also. I did stop at the first aid station to fill my AeroBottle with really cold water. It was beginning to get hotter and the wind began to pick up.
I passed the aid station for the 55 mile turn around. No need to stop. It was shortly after that my first wrong turn occurred. After around 3 miles of not seeing anyone around, I finally decided to check the map. Oops. Soon I was back on track and into the world of endless cornfields. The wind continued to pick up and dark clouds began rolling in.
There were not many bikers on the longer ride. If I did see someone, they were flying by. Soon came my next wrong turn. I recognized faster that I was going the wrong way this time. The winds now were gusting and the air was heavier.
I did not stop at the last aid stop with 20 miles to go. The weather was beginning to make me a little nervous. With in minutes, my weather fears were happening. The wind was gusting. The rain was coming straight down. Thunder was rumbling nearby. I was going down hill and the road had gotten slick. A crosswind gusted and the back of my bike slide out from under me. I did get unclipped with only a minor bump on the elbow. The biker in front of me slide also. As fast as the bad weather came, it was gone. I used everything that I had left to get finished before another storm came along.
I was beginning to recognize the end of the ride. I was OK. I made it. I set out to do 85 miles which is my longest ride ever. According to Garmin, I rode 92 miles and averaged just under 15mph. I was thrilled. In November, all I need to do is swim 2.4mile first, ride another 20 miles, and follow it with a marathon. Whoa!!!
Waddling slowly after 92 miles on the bike................
Posted by IronWaddler at 3:22 PM
Friday, August 14, 2009
This morning at swim, I could feel that summer is coming to a close. It was the last swim for the summer master's session. We swam outside and it was dark because the sun had not risen yet. The sign of shortening days.
The group has become close and alot of motivation to me and everyone in it. There are several doing their first Oly this weekend and another next weekend. Also there are 3 others besides me doing their first Iron. The excitement and chatter is continous to the point Coach has to tell us to focus and be quiet. One guy brought in bagels, cream cheese and doughnuts for everyone. I feel lucky to have found such a group of friends.
To those racing at Pleasant Prairie---enjoy. Also to my friend doing Chicago Accenture next weekend-it will be the experience of a lifetime.
Waddling and trying to hang on to summer.......................
Posted by IronWaddler at 6:43 PM
Monday, August 10, 2009
It seems like my post have become so few and far between. When I sit down in the evening to try to put my thoughts down, one of 2 things happen. Either I am totally brain dead or there is absolutely nothing interesting that I could write.
I am now beginning week 18 of 30 of Iron training. The weeks are blending together. I thank God my family is so patient with me. I have become more forgetful and disorganized. Every waking moment, I find myself busy either working or training. This weekend I began something new also. I fall asleep in the afternoon and take a nap. Saturday's nap lasted for 3 hours. I have never done this before.
New challenges also have become the weather and the amount of daylight shortening. Finally in August, summer has come to Chicagoland with several days above 90. Ther worst part is the humidity is so high. Also sunrise is coming later, so on the days of our long rides is not safe to start as early. ( Although, I think TriSharkie likes this) Also, this is the last week for Master's swim for a month. I don't do well alone swimming.
I am continuing to use my long rides and runs to test out things. I am getting a better handle on what I will need. With a half-iron coming up on Sept. 5, I hope to have a plan in place to try.
Waddling with no excitement whatsoever..............
Posted by IronWaddler at 7:35 PM
Monday, August 03, 2009
On June 1, I was diagnosed with having metabolic syndrome. It consists of high blood pressure, high cholestrol, weight gain around the mid-section, and pre-diabetic blood sugar. Two months after reading everything that I could find and getting a nutrition coach, I can say I feel much better and have lost 14 lbs. so far. the best part is that I feel good and my training is going good. I am half way to my weight loss goal and looking forward to racing at my goal weight in November.
Waddling with a smile.............
Posted by IronWaddler at 8:26 PM
Sunday, August 02, 2009
If you have seen Seinfield, do remember the Soup Nazi and the Chinese restaurant waiting episodes? DD and I went to our regular pre-race pizza place and experienced this.
When we walked in, the place was packed. As we walked in, we were met by a very stern looking man. He wanted to know how many to eat. DD said 2 and we were told the wait was 45 minutes. DD started to give him our name. He told us that he did not need it that he remembered everyone and to have a seat. As we waited, he kept his eye on us. Others were seated before us. Finally we were seated. The dinner was worth the wait. After dinner, we set the cash on the bill to pay and DD made a pit stop before we left. The Man came up to the table then looked at the money and then me and I retreated quickly out of the restaurant. DD found me outside and said there were already others at the table. There is no way to describe this better but it was hilarious.
Snips met DD and I at the Hilton where we spent the night. The morning came fast. With the start being at 630am, we were up at 515. My goal for the day was simple: run 13.1 miles. That was what was on my training schedule. The weather was perfect. It was in the 60's with a breeze off the lake. It took us 25 minutes to cross the start. The crowd was pumped up and the music was great.
The race used a wave start. Each corral was sent off at intervals and it sored all the runners out so it was not so cramped to run. Snips, DD and I were doing a 5 minute run:1 minute walk. Chicago is a beautiful city to run into. the miles clicked by quickly. Because of the buildings, I had no idea what my pace was on the Garmin that was fine with me. As we approached mile 6, we were in front of our hotel. Very tempting for sure. The race then headed past Soldier Field and under McCormick Place. Still feeling good, we cruised along. Several other who also belonged to Glenn Ellyn Runners passed with a quick hello.
At mile 10, I felt like that I was fading. I could feel the 40 miles that I had rode on my bike yesterday. It was was then that I met, Lindy(RunMommyRun). She looked smooth and ran with us for a minute before heading off.
The last couple of miles seemed hotter as the sun came off the lake. There were some really good bands rocking to pick up up at this point. At the 12 mile marker, I felt good and we skipped the last walk break to take it in. As we approached the finish, I could hear John Bingham(the Penguin) announcing. As I came to the finish, he saw my name on the shirt and gave me(Waddler) a shout out! I felt great and knew that I had given it all that I had today. My time was 2:46:37 which was my second fastest half.
Waddling after an awesome weekend.............
Posted by IronWaddler at 9:12 PM
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
This weekend's training run will be with around 17,000 other running friends. I am looking forward to it. The half marathon is one of my favorite distances and I am going into the city with Snips and DD for Saturday night before the race.
I am still riding a 40 mile ride on Saturday. There is no taper. Every training day is important from here on. There is absolutely no time goals whatsoever. Just enjoy and get the miles done. And of course--get a great looking medal.
Waddling to Rock'nRoll..............
Posted by IronWaddler at 9:09 PM
Saturday, July 25, 2009
As my training is continuing toward Beach2Battleship, my long rides and long runs are not only about the distance but what works for the distance.
My pre-ride was extremely disorganized today. My breakfast was Kashi oatmeal, .5 scoop of whey protein, and .5 cup of milk. (Also a Diet Mountain Dew). I filled all my bottes and mixed my special formula of Infinit designed for the long bike. As I arrived at TriSharkie's house, she was having the same kind of morning that I was.
I ordered a new AeroBottle with 2 chamber and had that on my bike today to try out. I needed to make sure to hydrate and get my Infinit for nutrition. We mapped a route out for 65 miles.
The pace was good and we concentrated on nutrtion and nutrition. The ride was very uneventful. I loved the new AeroCell bottle. On the return we had a strong wind slowing us.
We finished the 65 miles around 4 hours. We both felt good and learned alot.
- Loved the new AeroCell
- Put Infinit in small chamber / Water in large chamber
- Mixed 7 scoops of Infinit with water and used blender. Tasted good. Drank all by mile 60.
- Got very hungry after mile 50. Need bigger breakfast.
- Went through 48 ozs. of water with non left. Pack more.
This is such a learning experience. I know there is still much ahead over the next 14 weeks.
Waddling to prepare for a 12 mile run tomorrow.............
Posted by IronWaddler at 3:02 PM
Sunday, July 19, 2009
My goals for this race were very simple.First, not to drown. Second, to use it for training and learn more about nutrition and practice transitions. Third , finish in under 4 hours.
TriSharkie and I went down the Friday to pick our packets, look at the race course and avoid and early AM drive. Packet pickup was simple. Took a look at the swim course. It was only 65 and very windy. We checked in at the hotel and went out for a great Italian dinner at Avanti's. I had a great nights sleep.
We got up at 430am and I had oatmeal w/protein powder with my morning Diet Dew. We got to transition to set up in plenty of time. Lady next to me was very rude while I was setting up and made several annoying comments. It was then that I realized that there were no bike shoes in my bag. F**k! Next annoying comment, I was pissed and threw my stuff to the other side of the rack and I walked away. (This is very out of character for me). I found TriSharkie. I wanted to pack my stuff into the car. I regrouped and remember my goal of having a training day and first lesson learned was DO NOT FORGET BIKE SHOES. I went back and decided to just wear my run shoes on the bike. I could survive 24.6 miles. Time did not matter today.
I finished setting up. Then ran into TriHardChik during course instructions.
Good- Mixed Infit for nutrition night before.
Bad: forgot bike shoes at home.
I was not nervous at all for the swim. The race offered pink swim caps for new or insecure swimmers and I got one. They would keep an extra watch on you. I started off good directly to the first of 4 large buoys. After the turn, the sun was shining bright directly in my eyes. I did not have dark goggles on and it was hard to see anything. As I was swimming to the 2nd buoy, I stopped tried to spot it. A kayak came up and pointed it out. Whew. This kayak was soon to become my guardian angel. My sighting was bad and I seemed to constantly veer off course to my right. When this happened, I heard "To your left,to your left" from my guardian. He stuck with me and encouraged me the entire time. As got to the swim finish, I felt that there was no way to thank him enough.
GOOD- calm entire time, very comfortable pace, took gel immediately before swim
BAD- horrible sighting, Need dark goggles, need to try bilateral breathing so I won't go off to the right, need more body glide on neck - small sore spot.
GOOD- Out of the wetsuit OK
The first mile sucked because I was obsessed with not having my bike shoes. After that, I actually settled in. There was windy parts of the course and a few small hills that were challenging. I did pass several people and no one passed me. Near the end of the bike, I did have a slight cramp in my right calf but it went away quickly. The final miles of the course, I was concerned over how my legs would feel on the run.
GOOD- Average speed was 15.7 mph, consumed almost entire bottle of Infinit, felt great
BAD- unsteady getting bottle off back of bike, Burped Alot. Need to check into a dual chamber Aerobottle.
GOOD- fairly quick
I felt good immediately beginning the run. I had thoughts of doing some kind of a run:walk ratio but didn't. I loved the course but was very glad that it was not a hot day. I used my fuelbelt with 2 small bottles of Infinit that I froze the night before. During miles 3 and 4 , I was running with a guy who wanted to hold a conversation. I wasn't really into it so I ditched him at a water stop. I did not feel like walking and felt strong running.
GOOD- Infit worked OK, felt strong, consistant pace around 12:00/mile
BAD- Not much
OVERALL GRADE FOR ME-- B+
Points deducted- bad sighting, no bike shoes
Points added- 2nd fastest 10K, not drowning
Waddling back to training........
*** To:Iron Snoopy --Hope you are feeling better!
Posted by IronWaddler at 3:20 AM
Saturday, July 18, 2009
SHORT STORY --more will follow
- Do not drown
- Training day for transitions and nutriton
- Finish under 4 hours
Swim: 48:57.4 (1500m)
Bike: 01:34:45.7 (40K) 15.7mph (forgot bike shoes)
Run: 01:14:06.1 (10K) 11:56 min/mile
All goals completed!
Waddling like a happy penguin........
Posted by IronWaddler at 5:03 PM
Friday, July 17, 2009
The weather sounds like it will cooperate. Amazing for July.
Tri-Sharkie and I are leaving this afternoon for packet pick-up and a look at the course.
Waddling to pack.....
Posted by IronWaddler at 7:51 AM
Thursday, July 16, 2009
- I love traveling. I look for races that have a great location.
- My son, Bino, is at Route 66 Dragway this weekend to race his Mustang for the first time. House is supervising.
- My daughter , Hooch, is loving school to become an Estitician. Anyone need a facial?
- I have 4 dogs which are 4 different sizes. I have a golden retriever, English foxhound, Border Collie, and Long-haired Chihuahua.
- I also have 2 cats which are both over 15 years old.
- I am a fan of reality TV. My favorites are biggest loser and American Idol.
- I hate vegetables. I would rather eat fruit all day.
- My husband ,House, and I have been married 20 years. We met playing volleyball.
- I hope to be on "The Amazing Race" someday with my friend Snips.
- I am a Radiation Therapist at a Cancer Care Center in Joliet,Il.
- I am not a night person. It is a waste of time to talk to me after 9pm.
- There are 2 distinct parts to our closet. My side which is a mess with stuff thrown everywhere and House's which is perfectly neat always.
- I am doing an Olympic triathlon this weekend for the first time.
Waddling on Thursday........
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Posted by IronWaddler at 5:19 PM
Sunday, July 12, 2009
The alarm went off at 4:45am and I peeked out to see dark, rainy clouds. I had packed my bag on Friday night to take the pressure off in the AM. There were 9 of us meeting at Lifetime to make the 1:15 hr drive. The were many laughs in the car on the way and I felt very relaxed when we arrived. You had the option of a 1 mile or 2 mile race. My choice was definitely the one mile and TriSharkie chose that distance also. Iron Snoopy picked the 2 mile.
All if us got our wetsuits on with the all the laughs and jokes that could be made. I got in the water to swim alittle before the start and a panic set in. I remember how hard it was to catch my breath after being kicked. I knew this was a make or break point for me and I was not going to break.
The swim went great. It was an out and back course. My sighting was bad as usual. I looked up at one point and was swimming into the swimmers on their way back. Whooops. My goal was to finish in under and hour and my time was 50:01. I was thrilled and felt great. We stood on the beach and cheered and yelled for everyone in our group.
Now for the best part. After changing, we pulled out the coolers and had a great tailgate party. There are 4 of us training for our first iron distance and 2 who have completed 2 IM. Conversation was great. How lucky I am to have met such phenomenal friends.
This morning I got up and did a 4 hour bike with Iron Snoopy and the laughs continued.
Waddling through a great weekend.........
Posted by IronWaddler at 2:03 PM