Monday, November 30, 2009


Christy and Tommy Blain - YOU are Ironmen!!

WE DID IT!! I can't believe it's over...but thank goodness it is!! We hurt all over, in places I didn't know existed, but we are done!!

I will recap soon, but real quick:

The swim was awesome and fast for both of us. The sea life was amazing and visibility was 100%. It doesn't get much better than that.

The bike was great for Tommy and eh for me. My bike computer didn't work, so my hopes of breaking 6 hours was tough to gauge and my nutrition didn't go well. I stopped eating around mile 60 because things just didn't feel right. The wind was PAINFUL on the rough side of the island (about 20 miles) - cross wind, headwind, just ouch. But we survived!!

The run was great for Christy and eh for Tommy. Tommy's nurtition on the run just didn't work out and he was unable to keep anything down...which means no fuel for the muscles. I had a rough first 4 miles, but after that was able to get into a groove of walking every other aid station (2K apart). I settled in for the long haul and felt pretty good until the last 4 miles (but hey, it's the last 4 miles...who cares!!?). I was gaining on Tommy and so he waited for me at the finish for 5-10 minutes so we could finish together.

I'm so glad I did it - it was an amazing experience. I'm not sure another Ironman is in my future...but hello 12:55:56!!


And congrats to DAVE who TOTALLY rocked it and probably qualified for Kona and to Bobby who did amazing!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

[Theme from JAWS]

I hope I don't get eaten on the swim, but I figure I can swim faster than at least one person, so i should be safe. Or that's what I keep telling my mom when she freaks out.

In other news, we leave tomorrow. ICANTWAIT. You can track both Tommy and I online at My number is 1580 and Tommy is 702. If there is streaming finish line video, and you choose to watch it, I will likely be wearing a lime green singlet - GO TEAM BLAIN!

We just got an adorable little netbook to take with us on the trip, so I plan on updating my blog regularly. The netbook is so cute. We named her Eva. Seriously. I would cuddle with this thing if I could.

But if you don't hear from me, hope for the best, prepare for the worst and pray like the dickens that we can survive this thing!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


4: Number of days till IRONMAN COZUMEL!
2,364: Number of miles ridden on Rocky
476: Number of miles run
35: Number of miles swum
40: Number of hours spent in the gym doing something other than swimming, biking or running
1: Number of half Ironmans I completed
1: Number of half Ironmans that I showed up for, but chickened out due to weather
2: Number of weddings that seriously screwed up my training schedule, but I got drunk anyway, because hey, that’s what friends do.
120: Number of dollars I give the maid to clean my house so that I can be sane
5: The number of century rides completed
5: Number of trips to Dallas
2: Number of times I rode my bike in Dallas
2: Number of times I swore I would never ride my bike in Dallas ever again
0: Number of times I plan on traveling with my bike ever again (after this weekend of course)
3: Number of martinis required to help me sleep well
7: Number of times cupcakes were brought to ATP
3: Number of bike crashes where blood was drawn
1: Number of bike crashes that were serious (really only Tommy)
Eleventy Billion: Number of sports bras required to complete a training week without doing laundry
9: Number of days I get to spend in Cozumel!
12: Number of friends coming to play in Cozumel with me!
1,000,000: Number of dollars spent at Costco on granola bars, Gatorade and wine
1: Number of scheduled workouts missed
2: Number of glasses of wine required the night before a race
8: Number of ounces of cheese I plan on putting on my pre-race mac and cheese tomorrow night
17: Number of slices of pizza I plan on eating tonight at Collina’s
4: Number of hours of sleep I normally get
2: Number of naps I take on the weekends
75: Number of pounds my bike box currently weighs
50: Number of pounds my bike box is allowed to weigh
92: Number of curse words uttered while trying to pack my bike in previously mentioned bike box
37: Number of movies watched before work while biking
Infinity: Number of ways I am thankful for all my friends and family who have been on this journey with me – especially Tommy!!

Monday, November 23, 2009


It’s here. Ironman Cozumel is finally here.

Tommy signed up for this race in October of 2008. I signed up the next month because I realized that I like to be the center of attention and clearly I can’t let him hog all the glory! (well, that and I wouldn’t let him ride 100 miles alone!) So, together, we have been training for this race for over a year…some of that has been mental, some physical.

We started this triathlon journey with a miserable Olympic distance tri in Austin – The Cactus Challenge – in April of 2007. Little did we know that it would come this far. That race was terrifying. It was freezing and we had no idea what we were doing because we didn’t know a single other person who had done a tri! We survived and the rest is history. We did our first half ironman distance race in October of last year on absolutely no training – the hurricane, a house with no AC, moving twice, etc, well, you get the idea. Training just didn’t happen. Once again, we survived and had the time of our lives (our times were terrible, but that’s what happens when you never actually get on your bike). We were hooked.

We made a plan to start training after the Houston Marathon (once again that we hadn’t trained for…there seems to be a trend). We took two weeks easy before beginning a training program on February 1 to get us in shape to begin the REAL training on June 15 - 24 weeks out from race day.

So, for almost a year now, we have been waking up at 4:15am at least 6 days a week. Our social lives have dwindled, but not as much as I thought they would. (We are animals, what can I say?!) We go to bed 9PM most nights, wake up, work out, go to work, run errands, come home, spend 1.5 hours together making and eating dinner…and then it’s bedtime again. I don’t know how couples train for this when only one person is doing it. It’s hard when we are both training, but at least we get to spend those 7 hours on the bike together. It’s not necessarily quality time, but it is fun and it’s better than nothing!

On June 15 – 24 weeks out from race day - the real training began. It was easy at times, really hard at times, exhausting, exciting and fun all at the same time.

The hardest part for me was trying to find time to sleep…since I can only sleep in 3 hour shifts (and only one shift per night), getting enough rest was challenging. I am exhausted a lot, but have been able to suffer through it most of the time…I DO think this is the main reason I almost always injured. Nothing I can do about it though…I keep telling myself to just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming.

But despite the time commitment we had made to each other and the race, we were able to find the time to play with our friends and family because, let’s be honest, they are the ones who have supported us through this!! We learned a lot of things through this training process – and if the saying “The training is the hard part, the race is the easy stuff” is true, I’m golden!

Race day is finally here. The race we have worked towards for over a year is finally here. Our bags are packed and ready to go. We have done all that we can do…at this point, it’s all about execution.

Since June 15, I have biked 2,364 miles, I have run 475 miles, and I have swum 35 miles. That’s about 240 hours of working out…or 10 whole days. If you add in all the time I spent at the gym, that’s another 40 hours (a whole work week!). I am ready. I have put in the time and the effort. The big day is here!!

And that bring me to the goals section of this document. Writing down goals is hard because once you write them down, you can’t come back later and deny you ever said it. Once I write it down, it’s real and I’m committed.

My overall race goals are:
1. To not die.
2. To finish.
3. To finish in under 17 hours.
4. To finish in under 17 hours and still be standing.
5. To finish in under 17 hours and still be standing and smiling.

In ideal conditions, assuming I execute my plan perfectly, I am capable of finishing in 13 hours. I don’t think this is likely, but it’s possible. So, breaking 13 hours would be a super bonus, breaking 14 hours would be awesome and just breaking 15 is kind of where I expect to actually finish. Slight (only very, very, very slight) disappointment starts to set in at 15 hours. Once again, number 1 goal is to not die…number 2 goal is to finish. The time doesn’t really matter.

I have no idea how I will do on the swim and truthfully, I don’t care. I haven’t invested any time into it, so I don’t expect to do all that well. I’m capable of a 1:20 swim, but I predict that it will look more like 1:45ish. It all depends on if I can get away from the crowd enough to enjoy it, but stay close enough to draft! If I can’t get into my groove, I’m screwed….and that’s when it will look more like 1:45!

On the other hand, the bike is my baby. I have invested SO MUCH time into my biking in the last year that I will be really disappointed if I don’t do well. I really want to break 6 hours – which is an attainable, yet lofty goal. I have biked that average speed on most of my long rides, but you just never know how race day will go. And the wind on the island is mucho intimidating. This all being said, I am very willing to forego my running goals to break 6 hours on the bike…it’s very important to me. I can do it. It’s all going to come down to execution!

And last but not least, we have the run. Oh, the run. It’s my favorite, yet worst sport. I love it, yet I suck at it. My fastest stand alone marathon is 4:43…yeah, I’m that slow. But this year I have gotten MUCHO faster at the running. I think I am very capable of a 4:15 stand alone in January (I could probably break 4 hours but it would kill me and that would break Goal #1). This being said, I have no freaking clue how fast I can run a marathon off the bike. Not even a vague idea. No clue. Nada. I’m guessing that at this point, I will have killed myself to break 6 hours on the bike and will have little to no juice left in the tank. Ha. (let’s hope not). But if all goes according to plan, I will finish my bike in 6 hours and feel great (like I have after all my other long rides) and start running at an easy 10 min pace. I plan to take 1 minute walk breaks at every other water station (they are about ½ mile apart). If I can keep this up (which I can’t, since no one maintains the same speed at an Ironman marathon), I could finish in 4:42ish, which would PR my marathon time at an Ironman which would just be badass. If I’m making realistic goals though, I’d like to break 6 hours on the marathon…and really, anything under 7 hours would make me pleased as punch.

Realistically though, if I swim in 1:30, bike in 6:30, and spend 20 minutes in transition, that leaves me 8 hours and 40 minutes to walk a marathon. So, I know that I can do it! I can finish this race! I will hear Mike Reilly say, “Christy Blain, you are an Ironman” by the end of the week! I CAN’T BELIEVE IT’S FINALLY HERE!

And then afterwards, Tommy and I will sit on the beach with the people that we love – for without them, and the support, friendship and love they have given us over the last year (and our lives), we wouldn’t have made it this far. The hard part is over. The race is the easy part. And then comes the fun part!!

A special thanks to:Our families and friends who will be a part of Team Blain in Cozumel – Chris, Candy, Cathy, Brett, Amanda, Jon, Janelle, Thomas, Francis, Matt, Ly and Chris.
HoustonFIT ATP – you guys made 5am workouts bearable!
HRTC – our triathlon club – it was nice to know that we weren’t the only crazies out there!
All of our friends and family who have supported us…I know you are ALL sick of hearing about triathlon (I’m tired of talking about it! NOT!). It’s almost over, I promise! (NOT!)

Friday, November 20, 2009

Week 22 - 64.84

In the water: 2.24 miles - 1 hour 22 minutes.
On Rocky: 45 miles - 2 hours 45 minutes.
In my Asics: 17.6 miles - 2 hours 56 minutes
On the bosu ball: 2 hours

Total Mileage - 64.84 miles - 7 hours and 3 minutes

And this is what they call taking the taper to an all new level. Ooops. I may or may not have had a little too much fun on Saturday night (not that I remember it) and I was far too hungover to suffer through a 4 hour bike what should have been a 120 mile week was only 65. Ooops?? I'd feel guilty except that it was a taper week and frankly, it's the first workout I've missed since June...I think it will be okay. I hope. In my painful hangover state, I forced myself to suffer through an hour on the trainer (while watching The Godfather!)...and it was awful. I was on the easiest gear, cadence of about 4rpms, my heartrate was through the roof and I didn't look down at the clock until I thought I was going to die and it had only been 2 minutes. Yeah. It was bad.

In other news, the decrease in training volume is apparently the key to my weight loss. I have lost 3 pounds this week and I worked out less than half of what I normally do (and eaten out a lot). I no longer subscribe to the calories in, calories out theory. My skinny jeans even fit me last night!!


This is my last week before race week and so far so good! I'm miraculously skinny, I feel tired but overall pretty good, the packing has begun, and I am ready for this thing to be over! The only thing between me and my first Ironman is one 8 mile run, one 50 mile bike ride, and a hop, skip and a jump to Cozumel!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

50 Rules for Athletes.

1. If I can do it, anyone can. No, seriously.

2. Never run in the rain without lathering yourself in lube.

3. Buy shoes regularly and don't skimp.

4. You think you can run safely with headphones on, but you can't. Trust me. And you make the trail unsafe for everyone. Be one with nature, ditch the music.

5. Retractable dog leashes are the devil. Control your pet. And no, I probably do not want to pet your filthy animal.

6. If I am biking and yell "on your left", that means I am approaching you from behind, on your left. This typically means that moving to your right is your next move. Go ahead, try it.

7. After a hard workout, take an easy day…or two.

8. Never take a shoe recommendation from a chronically injured runner.

9. Lots of running can make you a great runner. Lots of biking can make you a great biker. Lots of swimming can make you a great swimmer. Lots of ellipticalling will make you a great ellipticaller. It burns the calories, but doesn’t help you run faster!

10. Everyone is fast enough to place in a race. You just have to find a race small enough…or slash the other girls tires.

11. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Run the tangents!

12. You don’t HAVE to do that really hard race, you GET to. The medal is your badge of honor.

13. Running while you are sick and tired will just make you sick and tired of running.

14. You know it’s been a perfect workout if when you finish that last set of intervals, you COULD do another one, but you don’t.

15. If you train with a hangover, you can race with hangover.

16. We train to race. If there isn’t an ultimate goal in mind, what’s the point? Pick a race, set a goal, make a plan and execute.

17. Always double knot your shoelaces. Even better, get speed laces that don’t require tying.

18. Never wait in line for a port-a-potty. Learn to squat, whip it out, or pee your pants…but don’t waste 5 minutes waiting in line.

19. Always say hello to a passing cyclist or runner. A simple wave is all you need…acknowledge their presence.

20. Find your inspiration.

21. Spend your time on your weakness, but don’t forget your strength.

22. Athletes are not machines – you can’t go full steam ahead every day.

23. When running in a group and you encounter a mad dog, you don’t need to outrun the dog, just the slowest person in the group. This is a lesson in pacing.

24. Cheer for your teammates.

25. Enjoy the crowd…that’s what makes this different than your training runs.

26. You can’t listen to music while running and expect to stay focused.

27. Find a group that you trust and enjoy and train with them. They will keep you accountable and make it fun.

28. Be aware for your surroundings. If you run in the dark, in the ghetto, alone, with headphones, you are asking for it. Don’t say I didn’t tell you so.

29. Push yourself harder than you ever though possible…just to prove that you can.

30. Leave it all on the race course. When you cross that finish line, you should know that you went as hard and as fast as you possibly could.

31. Never try anything new on race day – no new clothes, no new food, nothing.

32. Take your dog with you when you can – he will love it and love you more for it.

33. Run no more than 2 abreast. And that does not mean 2 abreast with 5 feet in between you. That means almost shoulder to shoulder. You’re slow and I can’t get around you when you take up the whole trail.

34. Control your pet.

35. I can tell if you are doing fartleks off me, so please pick something else to measure your distance.

36. If you wear the same clothes the gym every day, they smell and then no one can use the machines anywhere in a 30’ radius of you. Learn to use the washing machine and buy some more t-shirts.

37. Waking up early never gets easier. Ever. But if you have a goal, it at least seems worth it…most of the time.

38. Someone needs to convince races to start giving our finishers SHORTS instead of shirts. I have more shirts than I can shake a stick at, but only about 3 pairs of shorts (see #36).

39. If you don’t have the support of your family and friends, you will fail. Surround yourself with people who support you.

40. Take the time to do an easy workout with a friend to catch up. You will still burn the calories…and it’s better for you than beer.

41. If you normally drink the night before a training run, drink the night before a race. You don’t want to shock your body!

42. Increase your core strength. Not only to get a 6 pack, but it helps prevent injury.

43. Don’t ever give up. You can finish. You may not win, but you can always finish. Put your mind to it, go for it, get down and break a sweat.

44. Don’t bother taking your bike to DFW, TX for a bike ride. It’s not worth it.

45. Running anywhere other than Houston, TX is hilly…but that’s just because we are wimps. Make the hills your ally.

46. If the doctor can’t fix you, find another doctor.

47. Always drive the race course beforehand. Even if it takes 3 hours.

48. Listen to the advice of your friends. You don’t have to DO the advice, but it’s always good to hear the opinions.

49. 90 rpms WILL make you faster.

50. Don’t die until you cross that finish line.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

It Could Happen to Anyone.

The Ironman is a hard race. That's why we do it. Anything can happen on race day. Your biggest dreams or your biggest fears can be realized. I'm physically ready. I've done what I can do to prepare for this race. But no amount of preparation can prepare your mind or body for what I am actually going to experience.

Below is Melanie's account of her first Ironman experience, and my biggest fear:

138.6 - race report

What a beautiful day! "Happy Ironman!". Zipping up wetsuits getting ready! Big hugs, smiles, and lot of nerves. So many of us are first timers - we are experiencing every emotion possible. The veterans' faces show a look that they fully know what lies ahead. It's time! Gret and I lock arms and walk together to the start. The national anthem brings us both to tears.
This is the moment I have trained for all year. I hug Jim in his rubbery wetsuit, and kiss him goodbye. He heads to the front of the pack. The music is playing "Put your hands up in the air!". We're dancing and shaking and smiling. The cannon fires. Surrounded by thousands of people we wade out until it's deep enough to swim. It's much less violent than I imagined. I'm so blissful I don't care when I get kicked in the face, swam over, and bounced around by the waves. The buoys went fast. At the turn we all stopped because there were so many people we didn't have space to swim. The sun was shining bright and it was hard to see. People were talking and yelling crazy things. I just followed the sea of humanity. Another turn buoy, and I stopped sighting for a while. I was taking on alot of salt water. I didn't need to breathe much, and I figured the less I opened my mouth the better. I was pretty mesmorized by the sea life beneath me. The next time I sighted I couldn't believe what I saw! The beach was lined with thousands of people. I'm doing it!!! Ironman!!!
I reached the sandbar which I knew about, ran across it, and still fell right off of it into the water. I came up giggling like a little girl. Loop #2 went by so fast. I could feel the chafe on my neck, but I hardly cared. I didn't want the swim to end.
T1 I saw my family for the first time that day. I nearly ran into a fence waving and blowing kisses at them. The tent was crazy---scarry naked people and total chaos. Said hello to Gret and I was out!
Outside my pretty bike was waiting for me. I thanked the volunteer and before I knew it I was passing Ron Jon Surf Shop. Over the bridge, and trying to keep my heart rate under control. I'm fueling and drinking water. My aero drink is already empty I'm soooo thirsty and all I can think about is peeing. I had already pee'd 3 times during the swim (not normal!). I rode along calm and relaxed. It seemed like 2000 people passed me, and lots of packs. I was really agitated by the amount of cheaters! I kept telling myself stick to my heart rate. It's hard for me to not chase, react, or race. I kept reminding myself of the run!
There were times I was going 14mph into the wind. At 2 1/2 hours I stopped to pee my eyes were swimming.
So I sat in the port o potty - no hovering about it - it was the most awesome feeling. Peeeee!!! Meanwhile there is a race going on outside. I look at my watch I've been off my bike for 4 minutes! Back on the bike I feel like a million bucks. My watch is beeping every 15 minutes. I'm drinking my perpetuem like clockwork. Right before 3 hours I stop at special needs. I don't have any water to mix with my perpetuem. Hmmm. How did that happen? At the next aid station I mix my drink while riding. I'm quite impressed that I pulled that off! Next I saw Jana and Kevin which was awesome. It was a perfect spot because the out and back stretch of bumpy road was the worst part of the course.
At 5 hours I stopped again to pee. Somewhere in there was a turn with a nice tail wind 22mph and effortless. Ah! Some fun! At 5 1/2 hours into the bike I started feeling nauseated, and I wanted to be off the bike! The heart rate zone went out the window and I stopped drinking. Surprisingly my legs felt perfect!
T2 - I hand off my bike like a pro. I enter the change tent for a totally different experience. Two girls tell me to sit down. They empty my bag and line up my stuff. I Vaseline my feet and put on my shoes. They put my fuel belt on me, hand me my visor, and point to the exit. I'm running! I start fueling again the first sip is disgusting. I can't really process much around me. There are people everywhere cheering, loving the dots, yelling chick-fil-a, and men in bikinis. I see Kevin and Jana again. I want to stop and tell them about the nausea and ask them what I could do to fix it, but instead I smiled really big, waved, and kept on running. I saw my family, said hello, and flew by them. I felt guilty the next entire loop for not stopping to hug and kiss my boys. My pace was smokin fast and I didn't even know it until mile 3. I got to the park and my nausea was growing. I finished my first 1 hour bottle of gel and water. I had adjusted my pace and was right on. The next hour was a jog with a few ice chips and no real calories. I was worried, but still smiling. I knew I couldn't take anything in and I was going to run out of gas. My stomach was sloshing. The neighborhood was starting to suck! Back to the hotel, I hugged all my boys, stopped in my room for a potty break, and smiled for Jim Damm's camera. On to loop 2 I saw Jana and Kevin, got my special needs bag. I'm still running taking in almost nothing. At mile 18 I see Jim and I tell him I'm sick. He looks rough too, but he's on his way home! I round the corner pass the aid station and puke for the first time. I'm walkin! Mentally I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to get through this. Heading into the park it's dark and an older man wearing all white approaches me from behind and says "you can walk faster than that!". I agreed. We walked together and he told me we could go all the way to California at this pace on body fat alone. I looked up when he said that with some hope. Then he looked at me and said you don't have any body fat though do you? He was quite drill sargeant like, but in a nice way. He was really on my ass telling me to walk faster. A few minutes later he said "it's time for you to run" and he gave me a shove! I started running and believed at that moment I was back in the game. He disappeared into the darkness (was he real?). I ran for several more minutes until my body demanded that I stop and walk again.
I went along doing a run/walk and I saw a girl sitting in the grass with her head down. I walk over to her and reach my arms out and say let me help you up. Walk with me. She says she cant that she's throwing up and I said me too. She said she was on her first loop, and my heart sank. She told me to go on so I did. I made it to mile 20 and I saw all the signs people had made. They were everywhere and way too much stimulation. I threw up all over the signs. A ton! Some people came to see if I was ok, and told me to wait there so I sat down and then laid on my side. They gave me a bottle of water and a medic asked me lots of questions. I got them right, but they looked like they were going to pull me off the course. Then the girl from the park walked up and told them I was coming with her. I lit up! We walked together. She told me she wasn't going to finish today, but I was. She waited for me everytime I puked. At one point we sat on a park bench feeling highly intoxicated. Everything was spinning. She dry heaved a couple times and we walked some more. The aid stations were killing us: the noise, the mess, the smell, and the people. I can't remember how many times I threw up after an aid station. Raymund passed me and gave me a jacket. I was shaking all over. Someone in a tri on the run jersey stopped to check on me too. As he was walking away he said "I know you Dots don't give up!". That got me going again. Then someone gave me a space blanket, and that was the end of me. We stopped and sat down many times and eventually I started laying down and closing my eyes. I instantly fell asleep in the fetal position once. My friend woke me and said we have to keep moving. I got up again walked 20 feet and laid down flat on my back with my arms out to my side in the middle of someone's driveway. I was at mile 24 and I was done. The medics rolled up and asked "Are you sure?". Yes I am sure. It was heartbreaking, but I don't regret it. They helped me into the cart. I was shaking uncontrollably. One of the medics sat next to me holding me tight so I wouldn't fall out. I felt relieved this misery was going to end soon. They drove me to an intersection where we waited for a truck. I moved to the truck and then we were on our way to the med tent. It felt like nearly half an hour since they picked me up. How long could it take to drive 2 miles? "Pull over!". I'm throwing up violently on the side of the road once more with the guy driving the truck holding me up off the ground. Finally, we made it to the med tent. They offered me all kinds of food and drinks. I kept saying no. Then they told me I had to pick something. I had 2 sips of sprite and then I was asleep. They woke me every 5 minutes for more sprite until I started to dry heave. Then they gave me an IV. Soon after the IV my blood pressure was back to normal and my heart rate lowered considerably. That's when they told me my original vital signs. Oh my! Not good! I'm thinking this sport is f-in ridiculous. I'm laying there listening to Mike Reilly say "You are an Ironman!" over and over again. I want to cry, but I just close my eyes. One of the doctors tells me to lift up my head again. I'm thinking oh no more sprite, but instead he puts something around my neck. I look down and it's a finisher's medal. I take it off and chunk it! Someone else comes over and says there is someone outside wearing dots like me, and asks if it is my husband. Yes! He's demanding to see me. They send him to the tent exit to wait. They remove my IV, and I feel like a new person. I'm walking! Now I could finish, but my chip has been removed, and I'm a DNF! I see Jim and he wraps his arms around me and I fall apart. I look down at my watch it says 14:19:38 and I push stop. We talk to Johnny, Jason, and Gret for a minute. I see Heidi posing for a finisher picture with Kyle. We walk a couple blocks to the car, go back to the room, shower, and crash. I didn't see any of my friends cross the finish line, and there was no post race party. I'm sad, and my body aches all over like I did an Ironman, but it was only 138.6.

The Woot Diet.

I love Woot. I've only purchased one thing off this website, but the stories they create daily to sell their items are super entertaining. Well, today, the story really hit home.

They are selling "The Perfect Pushup" thing. Whatever. It's lame. I'm not buying it. But dear lord, if the following weight loss theory were possible, I would be skinny as a rail.

From Woot on 11/11/09:

Hey all you fat, pathetic sacks of apathy and sloth! Do you have the energy and vitality that you wish you had? Are you happy with your physiques? Well, of course you aren’t! I mean, look at you. You’re disgusting. How in the world do you get your socks on?

No, it doesn’t matter. I was just wondering out loud. The point is: My name’s Amy and I’m here to help you unlock the secret to a new, fit, fabulous body!

Now, I know what you’re probably thinking inside that massive, neckless head of yours: You’re thinking that I’m going to give you a complicated set of rules for what you can eat, and the difficult exercises you’ll have to do, and you’ll be so overwhelmed that you’ll have no hope of ever following through with my program, and you’ll fail, and you’ll collapse in a blubbering, blubbery heap on your poor, overburdened sofa with a bucket of Ben & Jerry’s, and curse the day you ever met me. WRONG!

My patent-pending weight-loss technique is simple. It’s just two easy steps.

First: You travel backward in time. The beauty of this part is that you don’t have to do it right away—you can get to it whenever it’s convenient for you. Next: You prevent the discovery (or invention, however you want to put it) of cheese.

That second part’s going to be a little harder, I admit. But at least you’ll have the advantage of being received as a god by the ancients, probably. What are the chances a bunch of Sumerian goatherds ever even imagined a man could achieve your girth? Or the ancient Picts, or the early Harappans, or whoever it was that came up with cheese? I don’t know where cheese originated. What do I look like, an anthropologist? DO THESE LOOK LIKE ANTHROPOLOGIST ABS TO YOU? NUH-UNH.

So you’ll maybe have to do some hunting around to find the dawn of the Cheese Age. But once you do, and you prevent it from ever being developed, and you return to your own time, just think how easy it’s going to be to avoid temptation! Imagine! No, I mean right now, imagine. Close your eyes and picture it. Are they closed? I can’t tell, the way they’re kind of squinty all the time from your face-fat anyway.

Think of it! There’ll be no more macaroni and cheese—just macaroni! Which is actually pretty good for you. And you won’t even know what you’re missing. No one will. It never existed.

What’s that? Far-fetched, you say? Implausible, you say? Riddled with paradoxes, you say?

OK, fine, be that way. You can trim down and tone up the old-fashioned way, with diet and exercise. It works, no doubt about it. It’s proven. But I’m warning you: That way involves pull-ups.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


My dog is the silliest funniest dog ever. This video is terrible, but if you skip about 20 seconds into it, you get to the funny stuff.

And then this one is just hysterical and I almost peed my pants watching it. For the 1,000th time.

Monday, November 09, 2009


It was definitely a weekend of good workouts, which I may or may not have mentioned before...

But the best part happened just now, when I realized that not only did I PR the 25K race, but also, for the first time, when viewing my results, you do not have to scroll down at all. I finished close enough to the top of my age group to fit on the same page as them. Yeah. That's a first. GO ME!

2005 HSMA Classical 25K - 2:50:29, average pace of 10:58
2006 HSMA Classical 25K - 2:32:39, average pace of 9:49
2009 HMSA Classical 25K - 2:26:12, average pace of 9:24

Getting faster!! I think a 4:30 marathon is in the air this year kids!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Quitting Isn't an Option

My little sister is signed up for her debut marathon and I paid for her entry fee with the guideline that she would toe the starting line regardless. I don't care if the freaking world implodes...she is running that dam marathon.

Well, the thing is in a month and she has been sick and missed a few weeks and they were supposed to do their 20 mile run this Saturday. She freaked out...because hey, 20 miles would make anyone shit a brick, eh? Seriously.

I had been having a very rough week myself. My training HAD been going AMAZING, butthe last few weeks have been eh, and I was afraid I had peaked too soon. So when Cathy sends me the email that she is about to bail, I lose my cool and write her a nasty email back.

But then I deleted it and wrote a "motivational" email in hopes that that would actually get my message across. What I didn't realize was how badly I needed to write that email for myself. I needed to hear all those things. I KNEW them, I had just forgotten them. I benefitted as much from that email as I think she did (she ended up running 20 with her group the next day!!).

Here is what I sent her:

You are doing it. And it's gonna suck. But the good news is that it will still be your fastest marathon...the first race is always a PR (personal record)! And Tommy and I will be there to help. You aren't doing it alone. You have a great support network of experienced marathoners (me and Tommy and all our friends!) and your training group. It's hard when you are the only one of your friends doing it, but dude, you are way more badarse than them.

You're doing the marathon.

The marathon is like (or what I hear people say about) giving birth. During it, you want to kill people for making you do this...yet it is strangely and morbidly awesome. And then afterwards, all you remember is the joy of being done and the love you have for that bundle in your arms (in giving birth it's a baby and in a race it's a medal and t-shirt...they are about the same). You forget the pain and sign up for another.

The pain is what makes it worth it. The pain is what makes it so awesome. Because you got off the couch and worked to acheive something that not everyone can. You ran a marathon. And crossing that finish line, in whatever crippled state you cross it in, is worth it. It's worth every minute of pain you endured to get there.

It's gonna suck. At mile 21, it's really gonna suck. It sucks for the winners and they don't even have jobs...all they do is train all day long (and they finish in 2 hours - assholes). The beauty of the marathon is that there is plenty of time to really enjoy it and plenty of time to have some really dark moments...but the thrill of the spectators and the 10,000 other people running will pull you out of it. But dude, you just ran 26.2 first marathon was easily one of the most awesome 4 hours and 53 minutes of my life. And I promise you, no matter how fast or slow you try to run it, there ain't no way in hell that you will be first, and there ain't no way in hell that you will be last. Trust me.

A wise man once told me, "In marathons, the only difference between the walkers and the runners is that walkers know when they are going to walk." Everyone walks during a marathon. A lot of people walk the whole darn thing. Just take a conservative approach and try run/ for 5 minutes and walk for 1. I promise you that you can do this. It's gonna hurt like hell, but everyone needs a few battle wounds, right?

So, in my closing arguments, I have attached a couple of things. One is a video entitled "Why do you run?" My favorite part is about 2:20 in where the two lead women in the Ironman collapse and crawl across the finish. And also, I have attached a document that my friend wrote - it is his personal recap of the New York City Marathon from last weekend.

So, HTFU. You're running a marathon on December 13. Better start running.

Week 21 - 149 Miles

In the water: 1.37 miles - 43 minutes.
On Rocky: 120 miles - 6 hours 15 minutes.
In my Asics: 28 miles - 4 hours 18 minutes
On the bosu ball: 1 hour

Total Mileage - 149.38 miles - 11 hours and 14 minutes

OMG. I had the best training weekend EVER. I was starting to lose faith that I could actually bike 112 miles and then run a marathon because my last few weekends had gone so poorly, but finally, FINALLY this past weekend I had an amazing ride and an amazing run.

I kind of took it easy all week - my swim on Tuesday just sucked, I was violently ill on Wednesday so I took the day off, Thursday biking was okay and I took Friday off because I always take Fridays I was primed and rested for the weekend.

My little sister, Cathy, had tried to bail on her marathon debut on Friday afternoon, and I wrote (what I would consider) an inspirational email to her...which was actually a selfish act because I needed to write that email more than she needed to read it. This is all hard...and that's why we do it. I needed that pumped into my brain.

Anyways, I NEEDED Saturday's ride to go well...and it did. We rocked it. I led the entire way with Tommy well behind me (not because he couldnt keep up but because he didn't want to draft)...and we averaged 18.8 mph for 90 miles. That ain't bad my friends. The way out was absolutely no wind, averaging about 20mph and the way back was totally into the wind and we averaged about 17.5mph. It was a fabulous ride. It was just what I needed. My confidence in my biking is back. Thank goodness!

And then I thought my run today would suck because the ride went so well yesterday...well, a 25K in 2 hours and 26 minutes ain't bad my friends! I felt like a million bucks.

I'm ready.

I'm ready for the Ironman. 3 weeks of taper and it's here. I can't believe it. FINALLY. My time is almost here.

Congrats to all the Florida finishers! You guys all did great - Cassie, Kathleen, Johnny, Ingrid, Chad, Kim - hooray! I'm GREEN with envy. Sooooo jealous.

Thursday, November 05, 2009


Can’t live with ‘em…don’t want to live without ‘em! Because, let’s be honest, life would suck without a SkyMall magazine and without engineers, who else could possibly come up with a design for an Ultrasonic Dog Deterrent or this (that I totally already own - thanks D&G)? Yeah. No one. That’s right. Life would suck without engineers. And the SkyMall magazine.

But alas, I am no longer an engineer…so I’m pretty much disposable at this point. I got this great new career, although I have no idea what to put on forms when they ask for my occupation. Regardless, I still come from an engineering mindset and upbringing. I am great at math, I like to do logic puzzles and I am type A all the way.

Type A personalities are a problem in a lot of situations…mostly social situations, as Type A’s aren’t known for their sense of humor and ability to have more than 1 nanosecond of fun, but also in situations where, for example, one might decide one wants a tattoo.

Yeah, that’s right. I’m considering a tattoo. Well, for the record, I am 95% sure I am getting a tattoo…now it’s just design and location, location, location.

And when and engineer decides they want a tattoo, the big guns come out…and I don’t mean biceps. I have done my research.

I intend to complete an Ironman triathlon in approximately (exactly) 24 days and after that time, I intend to get the Ironman tattoo. Yes, I know it’s a brand name, and yes, I know it’s free advertising, and yes, I don’t give a flying flip. If Pizza Hut comes out with a bad ass race, I’ll get a slice of cheese on my butt cheek. Until then, just the Mdot please and thanks. I’m thinking of thin black outline of the Mdot, about the size of a nickel.

I have a couple of criteria in selecting my tattoo location.
• It needs to be in a place that will not get stretch marks should I ever become large and in charge.
• It needs to be at least moderately concealed for work and if/when I decide to get dressed up.
• It needs to be visible most other times (what’s the point of a tattoo that no one ever sees?).

This has led me to 3 possible options, with one front runner:
1. The inside of my wrist (probably the right wrist as my left is usually covered by a watch)
2. Behind my ear – I wear my hair down 98% of the time
3. On the top of my foot

My wrist is the front runner and in true engineer fashion, I am doing my research. I have fake tattoos of various sizes that I am wearing to help me decide if I really do want this thing.

Because that’s what happens when engineers decide to get tattoos.

So far today, I have gotten several incredulous stares…

What are your thoughts?? To tat or not to tat?

Monday, November 02, 2009

Week 20 - 155 Miles

In the water: 0. Oops. Maybe THAT's why my legs are wasted.
On Rocky: 130 miles - 6 hours 50 minutes.
In my Asics: 25.1 miles - 4 hours 18 minutes
On the bosu ball: 2 hour

Total Mileage - 155.1 miles - 11 hours and 8 minutes

Well, it's finally the month of the race...I WAS feeling super ready and super strong and super prepared. And now, well, not I kind of feel like crap. My legs feel like lead, my shoulder hurts from my wreck, my bike fit feels funky all of the sudden...basically, I think I peaked too soon. Not sure how that will play into my final week of training, but oh well. I think I'm gonna push this week like normal, relax this weekend (do the distance, but do it slow) and then give myself a break next week.

Although, however much my workouts this weekend sucked, I FINALLY got caught up on some sleep. Thursday night, we went to bed early and slept in (till 6:30 - wowzas!!), Friday night we karaoked late, but slept in till like 10am (holy crap, where did that come from?!?) and Sunday we went to bed a reasonable hour, missed our alarm and slept till 7am. Seriously, who ARE these people?? All in all, I feel semi-rested for the first time in at least a year which is nice. and to top it off, I had an amazing weekend with friends...karaoke in a tutu, a gorgeous mid morning run, followed by delicious mexican on the porch of Cafe Adobe with my BFF's, a wonderful evening at home with Tommy, a gorgeous bike ride topped off with beers at Onion Creek with Jenn. My weekend couldn't have been any better!!

More on the karaoke and my tutu later...