Monday, December 30, 2013

An Update

Things that have happened:

I got a new job. This has coincided with a decline in my training - some motivational issues and some busy-ness have collided to equal missed workouts. Mostly, I'm training so I can eat lots of desserts, which has always been my biggest underlying theme for many years.

Logan turned two.  This kid - so cute and so boy. My friend explained it best: they are totally bipolar. One minute he is happy and 2 seconds later he can be screaming 'NOOOOOO' and crying.

He has become a pro at opening gifts.

Flash of Tassie
He eats sandwiches like this - starts in the middle.

We decided to start a tradition since his birthday is December 12th, to not do anything Christmas until after his birthday. This way we can keep the two separate. On December 13th, we put up the Christmas tree. And for those of you astute readers, an explanation: it was tacky Christmas sweater day at work.

We did a 5K in Pittsboro earlier in December with a bunch of friends and then had breakfast at Peggy and Dave's house afterwards. Peggy makes incredible french toast, and I'm kind of a snobby connoisseur so I can confidently say this. This was the day that Logan was introduced to Cars (the movie) and obsessed is not a strong enough word for how he feels about it now. I would estimated he asks about 15 times a day if he can watch it.

I'd say a big turning point was when he told me, "No Elmo! Cars!!"

Logan's daycare put on a Christmas pageant. I think they were some sort of Shepard's but the whole thing was in Spanish so what do I know. This is backstage while he was getting ready with his teacher Miss Gloria.

Logan did good at the beginning, 'singing' and ringing his jingle bells, but then he saw Marty who was off to the side taking 110 pictures and he started running towards him. When the teachers tried to get him back he started crying and threw himself to the ground. Marty was able to help him get it together and back onstage.

Speaking of Spanish, Logan is saying a ton of words, although most not very correctly. Some of his favorites are: Adoo-yah (Ayudah - help), Bai-yo (Caballo - horse), Luna (luna - moon) and many, many more.

I also had to put him in timeout for the very first time because he had quite the tantrum when I told him, no, he couldn't watch Cars and THEN he threw a car at me.  Oh no he di'int. He was sooo stubborn and wouldn't say sorry so he sat there for a very long time. "They" say that a child should be in timeout for 1 year = 1 minute. So every 2 minutes I would ask:  Logan, are you sorry?  He would respond: NOOOOO!  Then he fell asleep. Well played, kid.

Sneaky Tassie again

The weekend before Christmas was unseasonably warm (70s!) and Marty let me get out with my girls for a nice bike ride while him and Logan visited a cool Raleigh park that has a train and a carousel. The ride was great and we kept it nice and slow. My elbows and wrists ached towards the end which is a sure sign of me being out of bike shape because I haven't been in that position putting pressure on those parts.  And my boys had fun, too.

We had a very low key Christmas with just us as all family was elsewhere.  Marty, unfortunately got sick and was down and out for a few days, but he's feeling much better now.  Some very nice friends of ours let us use their beach house in Ocean Isle Beach, NC for a few days so we could get away.

Lining up his cars into a big choo-choo

Wee bit chilly at the beach during Christmas

Now we're back home and I'm enjoying a few more days off before I head back to work on Thursday. We don't have any big NYE plans because we're lame and I like to go to bed early :)  But I am going to get my butt out the door and do a 5K which will at least guarantee me a good workout.

Here's to 2014!!

Saturday, December 28, 2013


Yeah, I'll get back here one of these days. The end of November was busy traveling to and from Florida for Thanksgiving and then I started a new job the very next week. For those of you who don't know (and it seems there might be a lot because I get "Oh, I didn't know you had a regular job" from lots of people) I have a regular old sit at a computer all day job as a financial analyst. I also coach, but it is a side job that I love, not a full time job that pays the bills (or has insurance). Anyways, I had been at the same company for 6 years and made the switch to a different company in Raleigh. It's been very busy and if any of you have switched jobs you know how stressful and overwhelming it can be. I still have a lot to learn so lots of stress still on tap. BUT they are shutdown from Christmas to New Years so I'm enjoying a little R&R right now. Well, as much R&R as one can have with a two year old.

Anyways. I have lots of pictures and and things to talk about, but sitting down and actually blogging hasn't fit in very well. Hopefully, I can get to it before I head back to work.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Turkey Trot in Jax

Thanksgiving is not complete without a Turkey Trot. In Jacksonville, they have a really big one (1/2 Marathon and 8K) but my sister told us about one in Ponte Vedra Beach that is much more low key and didn't start until 9am. This was way more up our alley.

Original plan: Marty push Logan in the 5K
Reality: Whoah it was cold! We weren't really expecting that - I mean I'm not a total idiot and did check the weather before we left but when I woke up that morning the 'feels like' temperature was 30 degrees. We opted to leave Logan at the house since he did have 7 babysitters available and he didn't have to freeze his little tushy off.

Original plan: Run hard enough so I can stuff my face at dinner.
Reality: Oh crap, now that Marty isn't pushing Logan I'm going to have to actually try so I can beat him. I kid, I kid. We got to Mickler's Landing and did a long warmup where we ran into our friend from NC, Frank. Frank taught Logan to say 'No way!' when we all did Lake Logan and when Logan see's a picture of Frank this is exactly what he says.

It was a small race and as usual there were lots of kids who sprinted for 50 yards and then died/weaved around. I never seem to be able to start off fast so there was lots of carnage to move through. After about a half mile I found myself in a long line of people and directly behind the first place female. It was an out and back with a headwind going out. I didn't want to fight the headwind by myself so just stayed put even though the pace felt super comfortable. And it was flat! We never get that here and it was a nice treat. I heard a bunch of watches beep and figured this must be the mile mark (there weren't any mile marks for this low key event. In fact, upon check in we had to sharpie our name/age/sex on our number and were told to remember our time. it was a nice change from triathlons and most other road races). So the watches beeped and I looked at mine and saw 6:33, which was definitely a little slower than I wanted but I really wasn't expecting too much. My running has been SO inconsistent. Around that same time Marty moved up right next to me and then accelerated a hair so I got right behind him and he took us past the line of runners. Thanks, baby!

We hit the turnaround at just under 10 minutes and Marty accelerated again - ooooookay I guess we're doing this. But after a very short time this actually felt better to me than our going out pace so I pressed a bit more and sort of dropped him. I totally DID NOT do this on purpose!! I was just trying to see what my legs could do. I was with another runner at this point and we pushed each other for most of the return trip. I can't tell you how nice it was to have a tailwind and flat road.

I hit the line in 19:25 for a good negative split, 1st female, and 3rd overall. No overall awards though - I did win a $15 gift card to Publix which is actually a great gift because I love Publix, but I gave this right to my sister to help defray the cost of food she was cooking. On a complete tangent, we are getting a Publix very close to our house and I can't wait!!! I kill for their cake and cupcakes.

About the awards, they had some kids races and they did their awards first and they got chocolate turkeys! I was very excited about this and thought for sure since I won I would get one. So I was a little disappointed when I just got the gift card. I never claimed to be very mature.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Listening to football on the radio

I have all sorts of stuff to talk about - life changes, traveling, but right now I'm going to talk about radio broadcasts of college football games.

Interesting topic, no? It's only because on our what is typically 7 hours for most people but is 8.5 for the Gaal's drive back from Jacksonville, Florida, we listened to two football games on Sirius Satellite (best money ever spent, by the way, getting satellite radio).

First up was the Florida/Florida State game. Marty went to FSU and I have always not liked UF so cheering for the Seminoles is second nature.  And this has been a good year to be a Seminole fan! I was a little worried because the broadcast was from a Gator radio station, but I have to give credit to them - they were not biased at all and pretty much just called the game. Either they were really good impartial broadcasters, or they were just wanting to get this season over with as soon as possible. They of course had more information about the Gator players, but they even spoke highly of the FSU QB. So that was surprising.

As a total side note - I have some radio broadcasting in my blood as my grandpa was an announcer for the New York Giants.

We actually missed the end of the game (not that it mattered with FSU's big lead and much better play) to stretch our legs at a state park in South Carolina just off the highway. Back in the car for the next showdown - Auburn/Alabama.

I went to Auburn my freshman year before transferring to the University of Central Florida. Sometimes I look back and think I should've stuck it out at AU, but I was 19 and homesick and the coach who had recruited me out of high school had actually left before school started to take a job at the University of Washington (he's still there and has won an NCAA Championships). I wouldn't have chosen the school but for how much I liked him, so it was not what I was expecting athletic-wise. And at the time this was a huge deal to me. But, I did really like my time at Auburn and will always be a fan.

It's one of those school's that has this huge in-state rivalry. From day one it's just ingrained that you hate all things having to do with the University of Alabama. It's not something you question - it's just like those old kitschy sayings on bumper stickers: I root for Auburn and whoever is playing Alabama.

The Iron Bowl is an enormous deal. When I was there it was also at Auburn and I remember walking to class on the Tuesday before the game between campers that were already set up tailgating for the game. It is no laughing matter.

The broadcast started at 3:30pm and was done by an Alabama radio team who were not impartial at all. To the point where Marty and I had trouble deciphering whether Auburn got a first down or even scored a touchdown. Of course we knew when Alabama did anything remotely well. When the score was briefly 21-7 the one announcer couldn't control his leanings and said, "Ok, that's more like it. One more score and we'll be sitting where we usually are."

But Auburn kept clawing back ("despite the nation's best defense!"). With 5 or 6 minutes to go in the 4th quarter Alabama's QB made a "Heisman-worthy play" and then they stopped Auburn in a 4th and one attempt which according to them sealed up the Alabama win. They were ahead by a touchdown at this point. I thought this was a little presumptious of them but huh.

Then Auburn tied it up. And you probably know the rest of the story, and if you don't, please watch this short video of the ending because it's awesome.

There was an official review to put :01 back on the clock which gave Alabama the chance to kick a field goal and win the game and not send it into overtime. Their kicker had missed 2 field goals and had another blocked already in the game, so they booted him and picked a red shirt freshman to get the job done.

This poor guy. The pressure to perform the biggest (and might I add, longest kick of his life) in Jordan-Hare Stadium must've been unreal. Even scarier - the Alabama fans are not against poison. But the radio announcers were very positive about this kid and felt that the tailwind would provide him with the extra 5 yards he needed over his lifetime best kick - from back in high school.

Driving through the streets of Cary very close to our house, listening intently to what's going to happen, telling Marty I'm going to need to run inside and get the game on if it goes into overtime so he's on Logan and luggage duty, this is what we heard:

"The kick is up - it's got the distance......(radio silence)....................................he's......up the sideline..................(radio silence).....................................................................................

Auburn touchdown. They win the game."

Whaaaaaa????? Marty and I were so confused! What just happened? Auburn won?! Was it a fake kick? Interception? You guys are terrible!!! OMG!!!

We were able to piece it together soon after, but the 2nd announcer I'm almost positive shut his mic off because he was never to be heard from again. The other guy was extremely subdued. Best radio broadcast ever.

War Damn Eagle.

Monday, November 18, 2013

It Marches On

I can't keep up with everything that's going on with us on this blog, and I'm pretty sure most wouldn't want to hear absolutely. everything. that happens with us. Here are some highlights from the past week.

Logan got his first haircut this past Thursday. I never understood prior to having a child how this could be an emotional event. And lest you think this is some bad foreshadowing, I wasn't emotional about it at all. I can kind of understand now that maybe someone would feel some sort of nostalgia for the original hair that grew from your baby's head - I mean I guess that's the reason? But no worries, we swept up some curls and they are safely in a small plastic bag sure to be put in some box that we will misplace for many years. 

This is what his mop looked like before. His hair had gotten very long but the only place you could really tell was in the bath when it was all wet. Since it's pretty curly, it wasn't a big issue, but now that it's gotten cooler and the humidity has dropped, it got pretty crazy.

Sometimes it would hang in his eyes and he would insist on a ponytail. Which is weird for a little boy, but he loved it. If he saw a hairband around my wrist he would point at it and then try to gather his hair up. Marty would refer to is as his Samurai top knot.

We took him to one of those kids haircut places which was very bright with lots of cartoons and big colorful characters around. I'm sure this is the seventh layer of hell to any hair stylist. Logan did surprisingly well once we plied him with animal cookies and little toys to hold.

And here's his new look.

We also had a great weekend. Saturday morning started off at OSB World Headquarters to jog over to Bond Park for a local 5K.  Marty pushed Logan and we brought Tassie along, too.  Marty wasn't going to run because a lot of the course is off road and rooty/hilly so not all that conducive to stroller running. Erik kept Marty company during the race (and got to see how strong Tassie is when she see's a squirrel. or duck. or insert anything). Doug, Daniel, Christina and I all did the 5K.  It was fun - a toughish, wet course and for a great cause (proceeds benefited the MPS Society, and lots of kids with the disease were out there to cheer us on).

You gotta love small local races - one little boy who was in a track start at the line with about a minute to go, turned to his dad with wide eyes and said, "Wait! You mean we're running 3 MILES??!!"

Junior Awesome stood guard at the start. 

There were other people in the race. I swear.

Post race pre breakfast gorge.

That night was our annual OSB party. We had it at an Irish bar this year and as always, lots of fun was had and lots of beer was drunk.  Not as much beer as last year, though, I think we set a record in 2012 (and many probably wanted to forget the day after and were on better behavior this time around).  The next morning (after Logan slept into 8:00am - can I get a "AMEN!") we did a family bike ride at the American Tobacco Trail, with Marty pulling Logan in the Chariot trailer behind his mountain bike. We need to get one for Tassie, too, so she can join in the fun.

And finally. Thug life.

Monday, November 4, 2013

I know, I know

It's been awhile. It's not you, it's me. Seriously - life has been very busy so not having anything going on is NOT why I haven't blogged. Work has been crazy and just getting through each day with enough time to hang out with Logan and Marty has been tough. Marty is now done with the cross country season which is great for me (no more Bri-neglect). He had a great season and the kids absolutely love him, so I try and keep my complaining to a minimum. I know what an impact a coach can have on you growing up. I still to this day consider my high school cross-country/track/basketball coach as the very best, particularly in terms of motivation and confidence. It was all shot to hell during college with another coach, but that's another story for another day.

Anyways, I'm rambling. Logan is awesome. He's speaking English and Spanish and baby and sometimes you don't know what he's saying, or if he's really saying anything at all. But he has a lot to tell you anyways! I mentioned before, but back in June we switched daycare's and he's in a Spanish immersion daycare now. These are some of his favorite words: agua, ayuda (help, although he pronounces it 'aduya'), no mas, manos (hands), caballo (horse, he says 'ballo'), zapatos (shoes, he says 'pato' which actually means duck but he does mean shoes) dos, and no. Of course, that's the universal favorite word in every language. If you ask him different body parts in Spanish he can point those out, too. He also says tons of English words and will repeat new words that we say everyday. He can say 'touchdown!' and throw his hands in the air (we've been watching a lot of FSU games, after all)

Other than lots of work, I've been doing minimal training. My foot was bothering me for a little bit so I took some time off of running. I think it was just some tendonitis or bad shoes, but it's feeling mostly better now. I'm swimming a solid 1x week, and wasn't biking until yesterday when I finally got out (and it was cold) and am so out of shape that by the end my quads were quivering on the tiniest hill.

I got in one 5K a few weeks ago before my foot started acting up, but unfortunately I was getting over some sort of sickness so wasn't feeling all that great. It was still a fun race - local cross country course that I had never run on and Logan ran into the finish line with me. That was super cute.  I was the first girl in the race, but 3rd overall and that was my award - 3rd place.  Love that.

And here are a several pictures from the past several weeks.

Before the 5K cross country race. Logan was none too pleased when I ran away from him.

A group of us split a house on Wrightsville Beach and cheered on the Beach2Battleship racers. This was a very fun weekend.

Park playing with dada

Logan was Elmo for halloween. He kept the hat on for ~3min. We are bad parents and didn't take him trick-or-treating figuring he wouldn't know what was going on anyways. Instead, we went to a local bar for dinner. That's how we roll.

I went to Greenville, SC with some close friends to cheer them on while they raced Rev3 Anderson. I am a really good spectator. This was also a very fun weekend. And Greenville is a great town.

Logan and I went to the Children's Museum in downtown Raleigh while Marty was coaching his boys and girls cross country teams at the State Championships. Here, I am trying to teach him strategy in a giant Connect 4 so he can beat his Aunt Shana one day.

The other morning it was cold and dry and he had straight hair. We were all, who is this kid?

But it curled back up later in the day.  

Work stress relief at Umstead on my mountain bike.

And Logan already loves 'Unning!' Can't get the kid to stop.

Monday, October 7, 2013

5K for Two

This past weekend Marty was in full geeked-out triathlon mode. This entailed riding his bike with a few other OSB’ers to Wilmington (121 miles), and then ‘Swimming the Loop’ which is a 3.5 mile open water swim on Sunday.

This left me and Junior Awesome to our own devices.

We kissed dada good-bye early Saturday morning and headed over to Morrisville (next town over) to run in a very small 5K they were having. I decided on Thursday to do this mainly just to give us something to do in the morning. Kari conveniently lives about a half mile from the start, so we parked there and all 3 of us jogged over. 

Logan felt it was very important to stay on top of his nutrition on this humid morning

I hardly ever push Logan in the stroller to run. Marty pushes him exclusively when we go together, and I’ve only gone by myself with him just a handful of times.  I just don’t really like it – it messes with my stride and my posture and I’m not very comfortable pushing him. I’m also very slow when I do push him. At least once when Marty and I ran together I started off pushing and Marty said after just a few minutes, “ummm, just let me do it.”  He’s got the movement down and can get going quite well.  For those of you that are local, he has no problem pushing Logan through the Turkey Creek loop at Umstead. So I really had no idea how this 5K was going to go, but I figured it would be a good workout.

The course, luckily, was fairly straight, just all the way down the main drag and then a u-turn to head back. Less turns was good for me pushing that thing. Unfortunately, the whole way down was a slight decline, so you can figure out through deductive reasoning what the way back was like. And any incline pushing the stroller (25lbs) plus kid (30lbs) is tough.

I started off conservatively, and tried to get in a rhythm with a one arm swing. I switched arms a few times but holding on with my left and swinging my right was too weird. The first mile was nice since it was pretty much flat/downhill. As usual, people went off pretty quick, so I got to pass others almost the whole time. I slowed way down at the turn around trying to maneuver the stroller. But then we got back up to speed. Logan helpfully pointed out dogs, trucks and cars along the way. I was comfortably in 3rd place for women almost the entire race, and moved up to run next to the 2nd place guy towards the end, but he put in a late surge that we couldn’t match. 21:07, 3rd woman, 5th overall.

The race cost $25 and I won a $25 gift card so we ended the morning up 2 bananas.

The rest of the day was filled with much park playing and eating and napping. We were going to cap off the night with a trip to Chik-fil-A, but a bar & grill caught my eye as I was almost into the parking lot so instead we watched football and mama had a beer.

Logan is capable of doing most things at the park without much help, and Sunday morning I really just wanted to sit on the bench but he would have none of that. He would pull on my hand and say “mama, up. Up.” And while this was cute, I just really didn’t want to crawl through tunnels and slide down slides. But ahhh, this isn’t going to last forever, so I don’t really mind too much at all :)

Monday, September 23, 2013

Wilmington YMCA 'Race Report'

This year's triathlon went a little different than in years past. This was my 5th time racing this triathlon and my worst finish (haha).

2007: 2nd
2008: 4th
2009: 1st
2010: we did USAT Nationals that year, which was the same weekend
2011: pregnant
2012: 1st
2013: 90th overall, 1st beach cruiser and fastest run split :)

We rented the same beach house as last year, which is one of the the nicest houses I've ever stayed in. We got down there around 5:30pm after a quick stop at the Lighthouse beer store, to freshly delivered pizza. Most everyone who was renting the house with us had arrived and soon after finishing dinner Alysia and I decided we better go down to the garage and assess the beach cruiser situation.

There was only one that had a basket and I was adamant that I needed to ride this one so we could put food/drinks/phone (for pictures of course!) in it. The only problem was this bike's chain was pretty rusted. Lou put a bunch of lube on it, but I don't think it really made a difference. Anyways, after fiddling with the seat which was low, and the handlebars which were loose, we practiced riding down the street.

This is harder than it looks. To brake you back pedal just like on the bike you grew up riding, so you can't actually pedal backwards, or get your pedal in the correct spot to start off which apparently is something I do every time I ride my bike! I didn't even know this. It was awkward starting from a different position.

I also found out earlier that apparently there are all sorts of beach cruisers - even ones with gears where you can get going pretty fast. Alysia and I, being the competitive athletes that we are, had much discussion over the fairness of different types of beach cruisers racing. We are ridiculous.

Race morning came...with rain.Grrrr. Alysia and I left a little earlier than everyone else since we knew it would take us longer to get there and sure enough our housemates came zooming by not long after. We were really slow on these things.

I went and picked my packet up first, and got asked by one of the volunteers "Are you related to Marty Gaal?" which became a running joke all weekend. Mr. Big Deal, that guy. Anyways, I'm not sure if it's because Alysia and I were goofing around or what, but we were both total spazzes pre-race. I left 2 things in my transition bag, which was wrapped in a plastic bag and set by the fence (which was not close to my bike) that I had to go to 2 different times during T1, and Alysia was her usual spacey self getting her own stuff set up. Then we waited in line to get on a trolley and it was just about ready to pull away from the curb when I realized I had left my timing chip in my bag - back in transition. I screamed this to Alysia (who was sitting right next to me) and we both jumped off the bus.

Also, I forgot to mention that we decided to wear costumes for the race. Alysia's shirt says "I'm sexy and I know it"

Here is a picture of my transition.

I could be paranoid, but I'm pretty sure the people next to me were annoyed and rolled their eyes at me while I was setting up. I don't know why they didn't put all the beach cruisers together on one rack.

We did end up making it to the swim start. It was still raining on and off and was a little chilly, but the water was not wetsuit legal much to my chagrin. Although it felt like it should've been when I got in to warmup! But I had a secret weapon -- I had swum TWICE the week before which was a 100% increase to the prior weeks. Uhhhhh. Can you tell I've moved on from triathlon at this point in the season?

We were surprisingly not the last wave - we were wave 8 of 11 and went off with the relays. My swim went as I would've expected, nothing dazzling, but I was able to get out not too far behind Alysia so she didn't have to wait for me in transition. Even with my two trips to my transition bag. She had her own issues, putting on her helmet and then realizing she had forgotten her "I'm sexy and I know it" t-shirt, which wouldn't fit over her helmet.

We ran out of transition and onto our bikes and my handlebars immediately dropped very low as I started off. Then we had to get off of our bikes (along with everyone else) on the metal grading of the one bridge you go over. As I was descending the bridge, I hit a bump which caused my bars to go even lower and my basket was knocked loose. Somehow I managed to catch it but had to yell to Alysia so we could stop and try and fix my handle bars. We man handled the suckers and got them to go back up. Off on our cruisers again only to hit another bump (that first road after the bridge is the worst) and this time the basket flew way in the air and to the side of the road. We stopped again and shoved all the stuff out of the way and just left it there. I did grab my phone and wedged it inside my trisuit. Super comfortable. So we had traveled approximately 1/2 mile and taken around 5min. This was going to be a looooong ride.

It was at this point our friend Zane, who was also doing the beach cruiser division, caught up to us. But if asked about his race, he will likely say, "yeah, I caught Bri and Alysia on the bike" leaving the rest of it out ;)

After that, the bike was fine, albeit very slow. We chatted and complained, cheered and whined our way through the course. Everyone and their mother/brother/grandmother etc, and even many beach cruisers passed us. We truly did suck on those things.

Back in T2, I racked my bike and literally stood there while Alysia fiddled with bandages and chafing issues. A lot of people were already done and milling around transition at this point. I just stood there in my ridiculous costume feeling pretty silly. Then she was ready and she yelled, "OK! Sub 20!!" which really got me going and we completely blew our pacing and started off like complete idiots. In our grass skirts. Our first mile was 6:04. Oopsy. Alysia fell back a bit after that but held strong. Unfortunately she didn't meet her goal of sub 20 (I just snuck under) but we found out from one of our friends who garmins everything that the run was a bit long. That made us feel a bit better! Although after riding those heavy cruisers and using muscles in ways we never have before for that long I'm not sure what we were expecting.

We actually had the fastest and second fastest run splits out of all the girls!

Here we are on the podium. There were more than 2 in our division, but since it was the very last group to be awarded, not many stayed around. But our friends did, and they cheered loud for us.

Sexy and we know it.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Fun Weekend on Tap

I'm really looking forward to our Wrightsville Beach weekend. Mom-in-law is flying up today to spend some quality time with Logan while we're away and several friends are sharing the beach house with us (including bff Alysia and her husband Jimmy who moved to DC at the beginning of the year).

It will also be nice to actually spend some time with my own husband, who has been MIA between coaching cross country, his real job, and training for the B2B half iron.

Logan rolled over a ball at daycare yesterday and scraped up his face pretty good. Of course it's picture day tomorrow.

When I was just a little older than he is right now, I did the same thing but landed teeth first and split my front tooth in half. I had to have a root canal and they put a cap over it until the tooth finally fell out in first grade. So at least THAT didn't happen.

And this is a totally random picture that never ceases to make me giggle. This is the men's 35-39 start at IM Mont Tremblant. I think the guy on the bottom may have mis-timed his dive.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Weekend of Racing

Saturday morning started with a bang, or more like a scream, from Junior Awesome's room at 3:00am.  I don't know what woke him up but I have a theory that when he wakes up he doesn't know if it's 3 in the morning or 7 in the morning, he just knows that his next move is to scream for us. His room is really dark at all times, maybe we need to change that? Anyways, I got up with him and when I realized we were both sitting on the couch like zombies I turned and asked him, "Do you want to go night-night?" He looked at me, slid off the couch and walked to the stairs saying, "night night, night night" I put him back in his crib and that was that. Until 4:30am when he did it again. We were getting up at 5:15 anyways, but this made for not great sleep for the two of us. And what do we do about these early morning wake ups that he clearly is not intending for (babysitter said he was so tired that he took a nap from 7am-9am!) Parent advice wanted.

We were getting up early for our last event in the Triangle Open Water swim series. There was a front pushing through so it was quite chilly and very windy. The water temperature was still in the 80's as there hadn't been enough time for it to drop yet, so no wetsuits. The water was quite choppy - but this is what makes open water swimming challenging! I've said it before and I'll say it again, if you want flat calm water where you can see perfectly, go do a swim meet.

This did not stop 'swimmer Bri' from coming out when I was getting in the water. She is whiny with a bad attitude. Many friends have dealt with her before (how to deal with her: ignore her but never, ever splash her). She disappeared once the gun went off. I mainly used this race as a workout since I haven't been swimming much and I have one last triathlon next weekend. I figured I'm going to cram some workouts in and hope that it's wetsuit legal on Saturday.

After announcing awards (not my favorite thing to do, deep down I'm an introvert) and cleaning up - and once again, thanks for all my OSB volunteers. You guys rock. Hard. So after all that I went for an hour bike ride. I'll be on a beach cruiser next weekend in the race, but I figured I do need to ride a couple of times to make sure all fitness has not been lost.

Sunday morning, Marty went and killed the swim/bike (Aquabike division) at the Finish Strong half iron distance. Logan and I hung out and I tried to keep my running around with him to a minimum. We still went shopping and to a park, but he also got to watch a few episodes of Elmo which we usually try to keep to a minimum at home. But his number one favorite thing to do right now is chase me or Marty around a loop through our kitchen/dining/living room area, and when he kept asking for me to do that with him I asked, "how about we watch Elmo instead and mama can sit here and relax for 20min?"  He was very amenable to this suggestion.

The reason why I wanted to sit at least for a little while after park playing was because of the Magnificent Mile at 2:20pm in downtown Raleigh.

Kari volunteered to be my sherpa which was awesome because going solo wouldn't have been very fun. Timing was prime nap time for Logan so Marty stayed home with him (and don't think I was fooled, I knew this was also prime nap time for Marty, too). Kari was so awesome and warmed up with me even though she had already also done the aquabike that morning, and run a little after, and done the swim the previous morning, and helped at our packet pickup AND the Finish Strong half packet pickup!!! Then she held my stuff and gave me encouraging words and told me that, no my foot wasn't hurting and I was going to do great and oh I love that girl.

Men went at 2:00pm which I didn't get to see because I was busy doing drills and strides and anything else I could think of that would get me properly warmed up for this effort. But the guy who won did a 4:09. Not bad.

They say this is a flat/fast course, and it is flat...but not as flat as you can get in other places. Downtown Raleigh is not really flat anywhere so this was as good as it gets. The course was a slight incline towards the Capitol, a tight box where you could run 2 good tangents and 2 very hard lefts, and then 400 meters to the finish. I lined up behind the roped off area for the really fast girls but really wanted to figure out how to get in there because instead I was surrounded by little girls and people I knew would get in my way. When they dropped the rope I tried my best to elbow close to the front.

The gun went off and as much as I didn't want to go out too fast, it was inevitable in this type of race. And it's not like there is a lot of time to make any grand moves if you go out too slow. And for what it's worth, I passed people all up to 3/4 of a mile and no one passed me the entire time, so maybe I did need to get out faster. Buuuuut, I don't think it would've been physically possible for me to go any faster at the beginning. The start was crowded and I was super worried about getting tripped/running over some little girl. Anyways, went through half way in 2:38. I knew I wasn't going to hold that pace and it was all about hanging on the best I could. I ended up finishing in 5:26 - 15th overall and my throat and lungs were burning so bad that I was coughing for a solid 30min afterwards. I think Kari probably wanted to kill me.

Here is a picture towards the end that she took. Because of the angle and shadowing it looks like I have a chest - she is a true miracle worker.

I dropped that little girl behind me with 400 to go. I'm really good at dropping little kids in races.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Hilton Head

Lots of things have been happening around here and most have kept me very busy and have limited my ability to blog.

We went to Hilton Head to meet up with Marty's sister's family and their dad for his birthday. None of us had ever been and we rented a great house right on the beach. Lots of family fun. I had a bit of cold the entire time which made me sleepily and off my game, and also kept me from sleeping all that well so I was more sleepy (ya know, rinse and repeat, etc). I tried to run one morning with Marty/Logan and it ended with me mostly walking and thinking I was horribly out of shape. So I guess the cold was messing with my head, too, because of course you don't lose fitness that quick.

This week was crazy and our house pretty much looks like a war zone. I did end up signing up for the beach cruiser division at next weekend's triathlon in Wilmington - I'm thinking that bike is actually going to be really hard.

 I can't concentrate. Here are a bunch of pictures.

Endless Elmo on the way to HH. I tried 'Finding Nemo' and he absolutely freaked out. I guess it was a little scary for him.
Checking out the shops in HH
Logan mostly walked up the little lighthouse in HH
With his cousins and papa
Cate, Logan & Jamie
Logan really took a liking to Jamie
Running from the waves
Goofing around
Logan was maybe a little toooo relaxed at dinner
Cousin hug
We went to Marty's high school team's cross country meet last night. This mostly consisted of me chasing Logan around while he looked for dada
Family portrait