Thursday, October 7, 2010

Where have you been?

The past few months have been crazy busy! All of my time and energy have gone towards working, training and spending time with friends and family. Too hard to recap all I have been up to, so I will sum up the last few weeks and months with a few pictures...

I've spent a bunch of time sucking the wheels of these ladies.

I've seen this sign multiple times... and often several times on the same day!

Round and round in circles I've gone. Watching the sunrise and the sunset... Which is this?

Been up this hill more times than I can count on fingers and toes! Gotta love the fire station.

I've taken in some amazing views around the county.

My new "secret" training grounds. Can ride for miles and miles with no stop lights and very few cars; just like I like it!

Lots of good post-training meals and great conversation with this guy!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Super Sunday!

This post is totally late... but I've been busy! Work, Training, Hanging Out with Friends, Sleeping... You know how it goes.

Sunday was the San Diego International Triathlon. It's the only race I've done consistently since I began triathlon, so I use it as a benchmark of my improvement. Luckily I saw improvement again this year, so all the training has been working for me it seems.

My favorite part of this race is seeing all my triathlon friends. Even though we all live in the same city, it seems like I only see people at races. This is a bit of a problem for my pre-race warm-up, as I'd much rather talk, than actually do a warm-up. Point-in-case: Mer didn't think I was actually doing the race just 15 minutes before our wave went off

I had it in my mind to be aggressive on the swim. To that end I lined-up front and center. The horn went off and we surged into the bay. I caught some fast feet and made it my mission to hang on. About 300 yards later I knew I'd made a mistake. I became super nauseous and got that "my-wetsuit-is-way-to-small" feeling. So I had to back it off.

I think the lack of oxygen got to my brain, as I rounded the turn-around buoys and began swimming back to the swim exit. The next thing I noticed was I was way off course. I usually do a great job of swimming straight and staying on course, so I'm blaming oxygen deficit! Corrected my error and took it hard back in.

The bike was awesome as always. Backed it off a bit up Cannon, as to not fry my legs for the rest of the race. Once to the top I just put my head down and hit the rollers hard. I love the ride out to the end of Point Loma! Just gotta make sure I'm racing and not taking in the views too much.

The best part of the bike was my clear shot from the guard shack to the bottom of the hill. Usually I'm trying to dive-bomb it down, but have to slow up due to all the guys who can't remember to "Ride Right, Pass Left" This year it was just me and Speed Racer!

Started on the run and could tell my legs were cold. They felt all tight and not in the mood to run like I wanted. Could have been due to my pre-race gabbing and not stretching. Settled into a nice pace. As we went onto Shelter Island I came up on a guy in the 25-29 AG. I made a move to pass him, but he picked it up. This happened a few times, so I decided to draft off him and see what he did. Was pretty funny as his pace would drop, so I would come up even with him, then he'd pick it up again. Finally I started to make comments to him and got him laughing. We ran together a good 3 miles. Took my mind off the pain in my legs.

At around mile 4.5 I could hear someone coming up fast from behind. As she passed, I knew it was Kim Muller. First thought, "She's super fast. Don't go with her!" Second thought, "Hey wait. She's dry. Must be doing the relay. Really DON'T go with her!" I told my little pacing buddy not to go, but he went anyways. Needless to say 1/2 mile later I saw him. He'd run out of gas! Sorry buddy, but bad move. So he got chicked x2!

Took it hard to the finish, and knew I'd given all I had on that day. Was supper happy with my effort. Didn't stick around to see the results as I had been invited to brunch with friends and knew the food would be much better than any post-race food they may have.

The rest of the day was spent hanging out with friends I had not seen in a long time. I think they were appalled by the amount of food I consumed. Recounting my race stories, I may have talked some of them into trying out the sport! I was awesome to just be able to relax knowing that I had had a great day at one of my favorite races.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Honu Done!

Sometime last year, one of my best friends mentioned she wanted to do a 1/2 Ironman this summer. I told her I would do which ever one she choose; and being a Hawaii-girl (she lived 18years on Oahu) I was soon informed we would be racing Hawaii 70.3, AKA Honu!

I ended talking two more friends, Kris and Jay, into racing with us, and a trip was planned.

We got in Thursday afternoon, and Friday was for race prep. The am plan was to swim the Ironman World Champ course (OK just a little of it!), run Alii Drive, eat breakfast at Lava Java and go to the market in Kona to get all the stuff we needed to stock our condo. Check!

Then it was off to the Expo. The day turned quite stressful, as we had three bike to pick-up for TBT and one from Bike Works Kona. At the Expo, also T2 the run stuff had to be left and then the bikes had to get to T1, some 6miles away and we had to be back for the pre-race meeting. Two rental cars, a ton of luggage and gear, and four bike were not going to make the trip up. Jay and I decided to ride up, which was perfect to squelch nerves and get the creaks of of my legs.

Finally after what seemed to be the worlds longest and most stressful pre-race day, we were able to have a great pre-race dinner and get to bed early.

Race morning was actually uneventful. All our gear was already there, so all I had to do was give the bike a once over, get body marked and do a quick warm up swim. The wind was already blowing something hard, and there was a chop on the water, so my nerves were on edge.

Honu is a mass start swim, which was totally new to me. You have the option of starting on the beach or in the water. I did a hybrid start. My only orders for the swim, was to stay out of trouble. This was an impossible task! It was a washing machine from start to finish. I got hit, I got kicked, I got pinched, but it was actually a really fun swim! My time was a bunch slower than I would have liked, but it was super hard to get around anyone, and I was trying to conserve some energy for what I knew was going to be a long day. I did decide that I like swimming without my wetsuit. Arms not achy at the end!

T1 was pretty good. Everything for the bike was in a bag. So it was all about the dump the bag, get the stuff on and the swim stuff back in the bag. I had a quick freak-out moment when I was unracking my bike and saw a speedsuit on the ground. Quick check... Not mine!

The bike plan was to Hold Back. I have a history of going too hard on the bike, and then cramping on the run. I had no intention of getting a spot to Kona, so this race was to be a little of an experiment. Everytime I saw a girl infront of me (no AG #'s so no ideas if they were in mine) I would tell myself they were racing for a Kona spot and I was just racing for _____. I filled in the blank with things such as ice-cream, a cold glass of water, a nice ocean swim, etc.

The bike was tough! Mentally and physically. Long stretches of black asphalt surrounded by black lava, left me feeling like I was riding on the sun! Also the field was pretty bunched due to the mass start. Lets just say men DON'T like being passed by a small girl on a small blue bike, so they tortured me all day long with the pass and then be passed game. And riding right and passing left is not a skill that many people have developed. The good news was that the "hill" to Hawi, was really not that tough!

Finally we were headed back to the resort and T2. I had no idea how T2 was going to work, so I just got my feet out of my shoes and tried to pay really good attention to what the volunteers were yelling. It actually went smooth. A volunteer ran me to my transition spot and helped me sort out what I wanted. She told me to leave everything on the ground and she would repack it and put it in my spot. Thanks!

The run has been my nemesis of late. I love running, and actually do it quite well, but I have been cramping a ton the past year. So this race was all about NOT cramping. To this end I held back on the bike and took in a ton of salt! The only thing left to do was to go for it! The first mile felt great, so I knew I was golden. I got in a small pack of girls in the first few miles; I had to go really deep into myself to make sure I was going MY pace. The heartrate monitor really helped me.

This was honestly one of the most challenging runs I have ever done (Yes I'm comparing that to Wildflower!) No big hills, just constant rolling. Off and on the golf course (soft but hot and humid) and the road (hotter and hard). It was a series of out and backs and circles. I never quite knew where I was. But the aid stations were awesome! I began to think of them as buffet stations. Found a good aid station rhythm: Cup of water- sip in the mouth, rest on the head. Cup of Gatorade- Sip or two in the mouth. Cup of ice- down the shirt. Sponge- Squeeze out on the head and chuck it.

With all of the out and backs, it was great to be able to see friends and cheer them on. Mile 9-12 was the "Out and Back to Hell!" Black pavement, lots of lava and no shade. People were comparing it to the Energy Lab. I saw a friend up ahead who I wanted to say Hi to, so I just put my head down and slowly made my way up to her. Singing to myself helped too!

Finally back on resort grounds and I knew the end was near. I could not see the finish chute, but knew it had to be close. Picked up the pace and all of a sudden the clock was in front of me and I was done. It was very anticlimactic!

Post race was all about getting fluids in and watching friends finish. Then off for a nice ocean soak. Unfortunately I totally cramped while sitting in the surf. Ouch! Luckily I have nice friends who brought me water and salt tabs down into the ocean while I spent the next 30minutes trying to uncramp.

Results were up and I had placed 5th! Very excited but I knew this meant I was in the running for a Clearwater spot. What to do? Could think of nothing better than to debated it over some nice fruity, tropical drinks and french fries and.... Well let's just say I'll be going to Florida for the first time this November!

The race was brutal, but hanging out with the best race friends ever and seeing my friend Kristin complete her first 1/2 Ironman with a smile on her face made it all worth it!

Friday, May 28, 2010

One Last...

This week has been fueled by the expression "One-Last" before Hawaii 70.3. I'm super excited about the race and feeling ready to have a good one. You never know how the day is going to play out, so I just want to go into it as prepared as possible.

I had been reading some blogs and Facebook posts, and was confused why a lot of people seemed to be really keyed-up about this race. Then I remembered it's a Kona qualifier. I have no intention of going to Kona, so I guess that I why I have maintained a more mellow out look. My main goal is not dehydrate like I am know to do!

Last weekend was "One-Last" hard brick. Started off with some efforts and some easy around the GWL to Honey Springs. I was super nervous about the TT I was gonna do up Honey Springs. I have a few TT's that I do ever so often, to gage my progress, and this is one. The last time I attempted it went awful! Head-wind and dead legs made me turn my Garmin off half way up. Couldn't bear to see the time.

This time I was not feeling super fresh, as I was at the end of a hard block, but I was determined to give it my all. Pushed it pretty much as hard as I could from the bottom to the top, and was shocked to see I had taken a significant amount of time off of my previous PR! That boosted the confidence.

Then on to "One-Last" tempo run off the bike. I've done harder, but after 4 hard hours on the bike and three solid weeks of training, I figured this was good run-on-dead-legs training. In addition I had forgotten my water bottle, so I was getting more and more dehydrated the further I went (?Dehydration training?) Got it done!

Sunday was "One-Last" long run. Let's just say it hurt. Not in any specific place or that lungs and quads burning hurt, but more of a total body, achy hurt. Had to play mind games and crank up the MP3 player real loud to keep going. And a good Epsom's Salt bath was defiantly in order that afternoon.

Tuesday I was up for "One-Last" tempo ride on my trainer. My bike was shipping out to Hawaii with TBT that afternoon, so I knew I had to put in a solid effort. It was all about visualizing how I want to ride over in Kona and trying not to spray too much sweat all over my living room.

Later that day I did "One-Last" tempo run in Balboa park. It was a gorgeous night and the legs were feeling quite springy. I hit each interval hard and negative split them all!

Wednesday was "One-Last" Master's Swim. It was a great morning, as it was just me and my two favorite lanemate ladies. They are both the age of my parents, and can kick my ass! But are both so nice and encouraging while doing it. We had some long sets, and after getting dropped a few times, I threw on the paddles to keep up. Too bad I can't wear those at Honu!

Thursday was "One-Last" Braveheart Brick session. I'm finally able to approach these without the anxiety I had last year. I know it's gonna hurt and I just accept it. As it's a go-at-your-pace workout, they NEVER get easier. My legs were crap during the first set, and after the second Lesley shut me down. "Your work is done! End on a high note!" is what I was told. And that I did, with only a little whining about how I really wanted to finish the last set.

So now it's time for some serious tapering and getting ready to have a great race in Hawaii!

Monday, May 17, 2010


The Encinitas Sprint Triathlon is one of my absolute favorites! It was the first tri I did just a few years ago and memories from that race include racing with Jen, meeting Tim for the first time, being super happy just crossing the finish-line and not understanding the USAT age rules and starting in the wrong wave, so it looked like I was super fast. Things have changed just a bit for me as far as triathlon goes...

Leading up to this morning, I was just not feeling it. I had a tough week and was super tired by Friday. By Saturday I had to decide if I was gonna take it easy in prep for the race Sunday or do some hard training and either not race or go slow. As I was not committed 100% to the race, I decided on the later. After a tough am on the bike and a solid transition run, I headed to the race Expo just in case. Just being at the Expo got me more and more excited, so I decided the race would be a go!

Sunday was an early wake-up call and off to the race. There were no assigned racks, and the signs for where we were supposed to rack were non-existent. I wandered around a bit and then picked out a spot that looked like it would be good for a quick transition and had a bunch of ladies who looked about my age at it. I began going about my pre-race set-up, music on and doing my thing. I then noticed that my rackmates were standing around in their fancy, sponsor-laden racekits chatting, but staring me down. Not too sure what their issue was... My awesome new (OK slightly used, but new to me) Skinfit suit, or my super cool bike, or maybe I just look fast and they were scared. Honestly I felt like I was in high school again and the "cool" girls click were my rackmates. Little did they know, all they were doing was firing me up for a great race. I really don't understand why people have to be like that. Whenever people ask me why I love triathlon, I always say it's because the people are so nice and supportive. Well let me tell you I was not feeling the love from these ladies. All I have to say is "Grow-Up!"

Wandered down to the water for a good warm-up swim. The water temp was higher than the air temp, which made it feel nice and warm. But as soon as I got in I figured-out the problem. Strong current and rough surf! Now I'm pretty confident in the ocean from growing up in So. Cal, but racing is another story. I just don't have that much experience racing in rough surf.

Lined up as far south as possible, knowing that the current would pull us North. I got a good running start at the swim and after a couple of good dolphin dives (and managing not to fall flat on my face this year!) I took off swimming. It felt like swimming in one of those endless pools. As hard as I tried I could not make forward progress. Waves were coming crashing in at a quick rate. All of a sudden a huge wave came in, I tried to dive under it, but before I knew it I was tumbled upside down and looking at the sky. Stood up to try to get my bearings again, and noticed most everyone else was still running in the surf. So I did a few more dives and then took off swimming again. Finally able to make some forward progress and see the turn-around buoy coming closer to me. The way in was less eventful, except for swimming into numerous people heading the other way... Did I say the current was strong?

Like always I got my wetsuit off ASAP, and even had a little help from a volunteer. This made for a much easier run up the steep ramp to transition. I was on Speed Racer in a flash and down in aero, hammering it for the duration. A much as I love hills, sometimes it is nice to be able to just hammer on the flats. I was super stoked with my ride this year. Took more than 2 minutes off from last year! The 12.4 miles pass so quickly that I totally forgot to take my feet out of my shoes before I hit the dismount line. Had to clip-clop through transition to my rack. Don't think it slowed me too much though.

The run was awesome too. Except for a little blip of a hill at the turn-around, it is pretty flat. I put my legs on auto-pilot and my mind on going hard. Don't remember too much of the run, except my heart rate being really high. I was happy with the way the legs were responding after a hard effort the day before. Sprinted to the finish, racing no-one but myself.

After not really feeling up to racing the days before, I am super happy with the way the race played out. Reaffirms that all of the training is paying off. Oh yeah... and I beat each and every one of the snobby tri girls. Ha!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Was I Adopted?

What kid hasn't asked this at one time? I think I have finally figured out that the answer is NO, but on this Mother's Day I'm thinking about all the reasons my mom is so special to me, yet so different than me.

My mom is a girly-girl, and I'm more of the rough and tumble type. She comes home with her nails and hair done, while I come home with bike grease under my nails and hair caked in sweat.

My mom is an accounting wizard. Her checkbook is aways balanced and her bills paid on time. All I can say for myself is thank goodness for automatic billpay!

My mom is NOT a morning person. She loves to sleep in. I'm up at the crack of dawn, ready to roll.

My mom hates to cook, but is awesome at baking. I love to create new recipes, but my baking skills are terrible. Just last week I ruined a cake.

My mom loves to go shopping. She attacks it like a sport. I get bored after 15minutes.

My mom never swears, but I have a potty mouth!

My mom loves to travel. She always has at least one vacation planned and is working on the details for the next. I like to stay home.

My mom loves to read mystery books, while I stick with non-fiction.

My mom loves to go to the movies, any kind. I can't sit still for longer than about 20minutes.

My mom loves sweet foods. I'm more of a salty girl.

With all that said, I owe a huge THANKS to my mom for putting up with me and accepting me for who I am. She taught me to be a strong and independent woman. I could not ask for a more wonderful mother and best friend!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The One and Only...Wildflower!

I was SO excited for Wildflower this year...and it did not disappoint! Been working my butt off in training this winter, all with this race in my mind.

The morning started off great, with beautiful skies and not too cold temps. Despite not sleeping too well and a nagging calf injury, I was feeling rested and ready to rock.

Positioned myself front and center for the swim start. This new for me. Before I had always hung back a bit, thinking I did not want to get trampled at the start, and I was not "good enough" to line up at the front. This year I've decided that no matter where I am, there is always some elbowing, kicking and other mayhem that will occur, so I might as well be up front and trying to hang on to the fast girls.

Took it out hard to the first buoy, and managed to not get trampled too much. Once we cleared the first turn it was time to look for some feet to jump on. Unfortunately I had let the lead pack get away and I seemed to be leading the second pack. Onward I went.

Soon I began to catch the wave in front of me. First I was passing green caps, then yellow and then the lake became a rainbow of caps. All of a sudden what looked like such a big lake, felt so small; I had no where to go but over and around people.

T1 was somewhat of a disaster. Still having trouble getting the wetsuit off! Suggestions?

Before I knew it, I was on the bike. Kept it mellow in preparation for the nasty hill at mile 2. It was painful... enough said! Rolled out of the campground feeling great and ready to have some fun on the bike.

The ride was uneventful but fantastic and beautiful. I was in a great mindset and having so much fun. I sang to myself as I dropped boys left and right. Just focused on keeping my heart rate where I wanted and keeping it strong and steady. The headwind was pretty strong this year as compared to last, but it didn't bother me too much.

T2 was much better than T1. Was able to nail the flying dismount and get out in no time.

Legs felt good going into the run. I had kept it conservative on the bike, so my quads were not as thrashed as usual. Was yelling at all the "walkers" going up the stairs to move over. I was a girl on a mission!

I was really enjoying the first two miles of the run. Roller hills, but nothing too bad. Came up to a sharp left turn and BAM! The next thing I knew I was sprawled out on the asphalt! Seems the guy in front of me tried to cut the corner short as I was passing him, and I clipped the back of his shoe. The worst part was it was in front of about 20 people... Huge abrasions on my hand and elbow, but nothing that would prevent me from continuing.

Hit the trails and the big uphills. Unfortunately I began cramping... again! I was really diligent in my nutrition/salt, so I have no idea what is going on, but I'm really over the cramping thing. Luckily it did not keep me from running, but not as fast as I know I can.

The run seemed a ton shorter than last year. I think having done the course before helped. It was not too long before I was heading down Lynch Hill. Used my new "Flying Scotsman" technique to really fly down the hill and into the chute.

Overall it was a great race! I was heard saying that I wish they ran it twice in the year... and I meant it!
I usually don't do this, but I owe HUGE thanks to a ton of people. First and foremost to my family for putting up with and feeding me during my huge training blocks. Second to my coach, Lesley Paterson, who continues to push me and inspire me in so many ways. To Jane of Biolaser Therapy for getting my calf back into shape for the race. To the people at Compex for letting me pretty much steal one for their machines for the weekend. To Jes Motyl for being an awesome travel partner and keeping my mind off of my nerves. And to Moment Cycle Sport and especially Dave for making sure Speed Racer was in top shape.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

It's Almost Here...

I can feel the excitement building in me right now. Wildflower is almost here! I've been looking forward to this race since I did it last year. It really brings together all of my favorite things about triathlon; good friends, a challenging course and a lot of fun!

I really thought that I would be freaking out at this point, as this is one of my major races of the year. I don't really do the whole A/B/C race thing, but I am actually tapering for this one, so call it what you want. I do have some goals in mind, but the biggest one is to have as much fun as possible... Oh and to at least try to work on my pacing and nutrition. Let's just say I get really stupid while racing. Luckily my coach says I'm "focused" but I still need to pay attention to the details.

So the bags are packed (for the most part). The race wheels are on. The taper continues. And the excitement is building.

Best of Luck to all my friends racing this weekend; From IM St. George to Wildflower to Spring Sprint!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Under the Weather

So as soon as my recovery week began on Monday I started to feel a little ill. You know that scratchy throat, dry cough, stuffy head feel. Thought it was just my allergies as Sunday I had done a really hard workout in East County where everything is in bloom and then sat outside that night at a friends BBQ.
But as the week has gone on I've had to face the facts that this is the real deal. Not surprising as I see about a bazillion people with colds on a daily basis! Many like to cough right in my face to prove how sick they are (Thanks!)

So as a doctor, what do I do to combat a cold?

1. My friend the Netipot. Sure it's kind of gross, but it really works to get all those boogers out and feels really good!

2. LOTS and LOTS of water!

3. Allergy Meds just to keep those at bay.

4. Citrus Fruit! Lots of Vitamin C and other vitamins.

5. Peppermint Tea soothes the throat, and is tasty!

6. More Vitamin C. OK so it's not proven that this works, but I'm still going with it.

7. Oh yeah! And lots of sleep... only if I didn't keep waking myself up coughing...

Hoping I'll be ready to rock and roll with another solid block of training after a restful weekend.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Rain? What rain?

I was very sad this morning driving to work, thinking that I was going to have to do my after work ride on the trainer. Weatherman calling for rain by this afternoon.
I worked hard all day, and kept peering out the windows; watching for the clouds to roll in and the rain to begin. By 4:30 it was still looking clear, but was it cold out? A quick trip out on the balcony told me I should be OK for a little outdoor spin!
By the time I got down to Mission Bay, the clouds had cleared and I was rewarded for a hard days work by the perfect night for a ride!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Spring is here...

...which means it's time to hit the trails!

And run and run and run some more

Taking in the beauty surrounding me!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Hungry, Hungry Hippo

Did you ever play this game as a kid? Really, a game that takes no intellegence, no artistic ability and no skill... I loved it!

Well this week, I have been refering to myself as the Hungry Hippo. Came out of winter base building and into some higher intensity training, and now I find myself starving all the time! Really crazy hungry. Trying to eat more calorie dense foods to fill me up, but feeling like I could eat non-stop and never get full! I gotta get this under control or I'll end-up looking like a Hippo!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

And the Collection Grows!

Some girls have an addiction to buying shoes.... I seem to have an addiction to buying bikes!

I actually bought her while riding the GWL yesterday. Garage sales rock!

She's a bit rusty, and needs some oil on her chain, but I'm looking forward to cruising the boardwalk at my families beach house this summer!

Stay tuned for my other new ride. Hopefully coming soon!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Out of Touch

It seems like the days, weeks and months just fly by and I loose touch with some of my friends without even realizing it. This was made extremely apparent recently as I found out two of my friends had babies.... and I didn't even know they were pregnant!

Clara Padilla Alonzo. Born December 28, 2009. Daughter of Marta and Rafa, good friends of mine from Madrid, Spain. I guess I'll have to go visit soon!

She is growing up fast!

Ajax Kiran Sethi Choudhury. But wait....

... and Tristan Salim Sethi Choudhury. Yes it's twin for my friends in New York! Rajni and Si are two of the smartest and most fun people I know. These kids have a bright future!

And the Season Has Begun...

AKA: Desert Tri Race Report

After a few long but very fun months of base training I decided it was time to get back in the swing of things with a little race. Was not too sure how good of an idea it would be in the end as I was coming off a very tough block of training and the weather reports were calling for rain... again! None-the-less I headed out to Palm Desert with Andrea and Eddie for a fun weekend.

Couldn't really find it in me to get all excited for this race. It's still pretty early in the year, and I have done no race prep thus far, just base. Excited to see how the arms and legs would respond.

Twenty minutes before my wave went off, I went down to the lake to get in a little warm-up swim. Turned to Andrea to zip up the wetsuit, and... the zipper breaks. I ripped off the wetsuit to take a look and realize it is very broken. I had remembered seeing in the expo area, so I took a chance and ran over. I pled my case to the girl working there as she was putting the wetsuits away. Luckily she was super cool and nice and set about finding me something to wear. Found a wetsuit that was OK, a little big, but had to work. I am very indebted to!!! Thanks for allowing me to race.

So I got back down to the lake with about five minutes before my wave went off. I ran full charge into the water, not my usual tip-toeing in and try to warm up as fast as possible.

The start was a beach start, but no true corral, so everyone was spread out along the shore. I took up a position that I thought would give me a nice line to the first buoy and off we went. Swim was pretty uneventful. I really think all the swimming I have been doing this winter is paying off; if not in speed, then in confidence in the water. It seems I have not forgotten how to site either!

Once out of the water I had to struggle to get off the borrowed wetsuit, and hopped onto Speed Racer. We have only been reunited for two rides, so I was not sure how it would go. That coupled by the fact that rain started to fall about five minutes in made for not the most ideal racing conditions.The good news was the course was pretty much a big rectangle, so nothing technical to crash on. The bad news was my legs do not like being cold, so I had a really hard time getting my cadence where it should have been. Rode conservative, but had a good bike none-the-less.

T2 was a bit of a mess for me. As I approached the dismount line on the bike, I loosened my shoe straps and tried to slip out my feet. They wouldn't come out! Seems being soaked with rain makes the quick dismount impossible. So into T2 I ran carrying my shoes. Threw on the running shoes and headed out. But something not right... Were my shoes on? Were they on the right feet? Had to stop dead in my tracks to check it out. Sure enough my shoes were on correctly, but my feet were so frozen I couldn't tell.

The run was pretty uneventful as well. Between frozen feet, frozen legs and running on uneven terrain, I didn't feel it was my best effort. Just tried to give it all I had on that day and enjoy my favorite part of the race. Felt better as I continued to warm up on the run, and the 10K flew by.

Felt like I had a solid race; just where I should be right now. Tried out some things and found out what I need to work on in the coming months. Can't wait for my first real race of the season... Wildflower!

Saturday, February 13, 2010


... you just have to have a good crash. It had been about three years for me, so I suppose I was due. How it happened is not so important; only that no one was really hurt and I didn't have to go to the hospital on my day off.
Better yet was my stop at Henry's on my way home. Everyone was staring at me and my ripped up shorts. The produce man even offered me a papertowel to mop the blood that continued to ooze from my elbow.

Looking better after a good shower!

That's gonna make for a good story, especially when I'm sport a bathing suit on Monday at Masters!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


While cleaning my house the other day (I know... shocker! But it is rest week) I found this poster I've had since I was in high school. Not sure where it came from, but I have always loved what it says...

is what transforms a promise into reality.

It is the words that speak boldly of your intentions
And the actions which speak louder than words.

It is making the time when there is none.
Coming through time after time after time,
Year after year after year.

Commitment is the stuff character is made of;
The power to change the face of things.

It is the daily triumph of integrity over skepticism.

This is the way I intend to live my life. Whether it be triathlon, medicine or anything else I endeavor to do, I want to be 100% committed!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Good Times on My Trainer?

So if you missed it on the news, everyone's blogs or have not looked outside in a few days, we are having a serious storm in San Diego. I find it really funny how everyone is freaking out, and most of these people are from cities across the nation that get worse weather than San Diego could ever dream of. Being a native, I kind of like the change, plus anything to avoid the wild fires that come in the fall!

I am currently recovering from a serious case of Achilles Tendonitis. It sucks, but it is getting better; for that I am grateful. So this means no running and a lot of swimming and biking. Sounds good to me until I realize that all of my biking will have to be done on the trainer, and I have a decent long ride scheduled for this morning.

Instead of looking at the negative (OK... I admit it. I did that for a while), I decided to think of all of the good things about riding my trainer in my living room.

1. I could continue to drink my cup of coffee during my warm-up.

2. No need to bundle-up. Threw on a sports bra and cycling shorts.

3. Could get my laundry done while I rode (except the folding of course)

4. Forget having to look for a Starbucks or a large bush when nature called. Just hopped off and into my nice, clean bathroom.

5. No eating bars or gels while I rode. About half way through I made a toasted PB&J. Yum!

6. Got to watch a movie. Too bad it was a terrible one!

7. No wasting time and gas on driving. Rolled out of bed and started my work-out.

8. When the phone rang, I didn't have to stop. I'm sure the person on the other end was very confused why I was breathing so heavy.

9. Didn't have to worry about running out of water. Had a fridge full.

10. No sitting around sweaty afterwards. Got to hop immediately into a hot shower.

In the end, I'm hoping that the sun comes out for my weekend of long rides, but the trainer wasn't too bad I suppose...

Monday, January 11, 2010

Last Day

I'm currently obsessed with Nickelback's song "If Today was Your Last Day." I play it over and over as I drive. The below to passages really sum up how I want my 2010 to be lived.

"Each day's a gift and not a given right
Leave no stone unturned, leave your fears behind
And try to take the path less traveled by
That first step you take is the longest stride"

"Against the grain should be a way of life
What's worth the price is always worth the fight
Every second counts 'cause there's no second try
So live like you're never living twice
Don't take the free ride in your own life"

A friend told me she thought it was a depressing song, but I don't at all. To me it is all about taking the opportunity that is in front of me and living my life to it's fullest.

Just thought I'd share...

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A Day in My Life

Through many recent conversations, I came to realize that most people have no idea what goes on in my day to day life. My work friends don’t get my tri life, my tri friends don’t understand my work day, and my parents don’t get any of it! So here is a look at what occurs in a “typical” day. I warn you it’s long, but my days are long!

4:15am- Alarm goes off. Ugh! Not ready to be up yet, but I have a ride to get in before work. Luckily I love riding, so it’s not too hard to get up. Throw on the warmest cycling clothes that I have, eat some cereal , make sure I have all the “equipment” I’ll need for the bikeworkgymrun day, and out the door.

5:15- At Mission Bay. I’m the only car here. Set-up bike and off I go. Not too cold, which is good. Music blaring in my ears to get me fully awake.

5:30-7:30- Soledad hill repeats. I must admit I really like the early am work-out when I feel like I’m the only one awake. Plus seeing sunrise from the top of Soledad never gets old. I am all pumped up to have a good ride this am. Get a flat at the end of my last repeat. Decided it is a small leak and I can make it back without having to change the tire (esp since I did not allot time for a tire change this am!) Just keep inflating with CO2.

7:30-8- Literally speed over to the office. Luckily there is a 24 Hour Fitness in the building, so I make a quick stop to shower and change. No time for drying the hair this am.

8:05- Make it into my office just on time. First patient is already in a room, so I drop my stuff and throw on the white coat. Have to make the mental shift from triathlete to doctor quickly. Ugh!

8:07- First patient of the day. She is a new patient, who is transgender and wants to become a man. Her (his?) friend saw a doctor here and is getting help with that. Can I prescribe testosterone? Thought I was awake, but really not ready for this yet! Definitely not something I learned in medical school. Mind won’t comprehend this one right now. Tell her I have to look into it and will be in touch.

8:20- Next patient is ready. She has missed her Depo Shot this month and is afraid she is pregnant. Luckily the preg test is negative. We discuss contraception.

8:29- Beg someone to make coffee as I go between rooms.

8:30- Patient in for a physical exam. Notice she is only scheduled for 15min visit. Gonna have to kill someone over that later. Luckily she is a very healthy 84 y/o Japanese lady. I try to get her to tell me her secret to being so healthy at her age while getting the exam done.

8:50- A patient who is transferring care to me from another doctor. We do a quick review of her medical problems and medications. She’s fun to chat with but I know I have to keep moving.

9:00- A few minutes to check my e-mail, sign-off labs/x-rays/consult notes, and call back a patient who has left a message. Coffee is ready so I grab a cup. Now I’m hungry. Throw oatmeal in microwave as I head out to see another patient.

9:10- New patient who has made a New Year’s resolution to quit smoking. Yeah! We discuss options and then chat about his recent move to SD from Maine.

9:25- Haven’t done any of my dictations yet, so I power through four. A few bites of oatmeal go in with a few sips of coffee which is now cold

9:35- One of my favorite patients is in for a breast infection. It seems to be healing well. I take the opportunity to discuss her diabetes and blood pressure with her. She seems to be doing well. I notice she has lost 10lbs. Lots of praise for doing that over the holidays!

9:45- My am 15min “break,” which I use to sign off more charts (they seem to be breeding like rabbits while I see patients), do some more dictations, write a letter to another physician about a mutual patient and talk to our lead nurse about some issues. Oh yeah and shovel oatmeal into my mouth.

10:00- A well known patient who has been trying to run, but keeps getting foot and knee pain. We discuss referring her to PT versus Ortho. She wants to go to Ortho despite my urging for the other.

10:10- Sign a few more charts, look through and answer some of my messages (which are now piling up), and call a patient who is insisting on an MRI for her headaches. Not in a mood to fight it, so I agree.

10:20- See a patient who has been trying to get pregnant for a year. She wants fertility testing. I get her set-up for that.

10:30- Next patient needs a PAP smear and some skin lesions frozen off. Freezing things is good fun! Get them both done quick which gives me some extra time for paperwork

10:45- More charts/ dictations/ messages/ phone call. Do you see a pattern? Starving again. Grab a string cheese stick.

11:00- A Medicare eval. Super sweet and relatively healthy lady, so it goes well.

11:20- Need to do my prescription refills. Mostly your standard anti-hypertensive, cholesterol and anti-depressant meds, but there are three requests for anti-herpes meds. Is it going around?

11:30- Last patient of the am. Oh, she is a painful one! Having left arm pain (mostly in her wrist) and is convinced it is a heart attack. I try to get a good history and assure her it is not her heart. We do an EKG. She wants a carotid ultrasound, which I agree to. Wants some other diagnostic studies too, which I somehow talk her out of. I feel bad that I am not that patient with her, but it’s been a long am already and I want to get to the gym for lunch.

11:50- Do more charts/answer messages (luckily my secretary and nurse will call people back for me)/fill prescriptions and dictate. Very motivated to move fast as the gym is calling my name. Feel like a glorified drug dealer!

12:15-1:00- Yeah I have 45min to get in some stretching and core at the gym! The front desk girl at 24 Hour Fitness remarks on my second visit of the day. She’s used to it, and even knows my name. Get my gym work done which helps clear my mind for round two on the work day.

1:10- Back in the office to inhale some lunch while, yes you guessed it, doing more paperwork stuff. Lots of new messages over lunch. Need to call back some people. including one person who doesn’t understand why to antibiotics given to her by the ER are not working for her cold. She seems mad at me about this… Briefly check my e-mail, which is luckily mostly junk.

1:20- A recheck on a well know patient. We chat about her blood pressure which seems to fluctuate a lot and decided to up her meds. She also tells me she heard that running makes womens’ internal organs fall out. This leaves me laughing and pondering.

1:35- Two nurses come in to tell me that one of our medical records staff is feeling dizzy and nauseous. Can I squeeze her in? Of course. See her and make sure she is not pregnant (Negative…Phew!) Can’t put a finger on what is exactly the matter, but send her home for the day.

1:50- Still really hungry. Off to the vending machine for some pretzels. More paperwork.

2:00- Physical exam and PAP smear. The girl has her boyfriend in the room. It doesn’t bother me if it doesn’t bother them, but really…

2:20- Try to catch-up on dictations again. Chat with some staff, one who didn’t think I was in the office for the day since she had not seen me all am.

2:30- Patient comes in with a cough. She is a smoker, so I try to talk to her about quitting. That falls on deaf ears, so I move along. Think she has pneumonia. Send her for a chest x-ray and prescribe antibiotics.

2:45- My pm “break.” But a patient walks in needing an EKG and labs for a diet program. I’m a softee and can’t say no. We discuss the diet program briefly.

3:00- A patient with dizziness. I hate this complaint as it is so vague and often hard to find a cause. I do some testing and have no idea what is causing it. Tell her to rest and drink lots of fluids. She wants a flu shot, which I tell my nurse. Unfortunately she miss understands and checks her for flu. Whoops. We get her the shot and out the door.

3:15- Afternoon is a bit slower than the am, so I catch-up on paperwork and phone calls/messages. Call a patient who wants me to explain what HPV is and all about it. Then another tells me she has been exposed to Natural Gas for the past year and thinks she needs to be tested. No idea what to test for so I’ll have to call her back.

3:30- A patient comes in for a rash. She thinks it is due to an antibiotic she has been on for the past two months. I’m not sure but it seems to be going away now that she is off it. We’ll keep an eye on her. She doesn’t need the antibiotic anyways. Wants a PAP, but I have her re-schedule for that.

3:40- More paperwork/prescriptions/etc.

3:45- An athlete patient comes in with water in her ear from swimming. I don’t see anything, but bust out my mother’s home remedy of alcohol in the ear. She gets relief. We chat a bit about her up-coming marathon.

4:00- Last patient of the day. Very cool old lady for a Medicare eval. She tells me that she’s been a cyclist for the past 40+ years. We chat about bikes and routes. I love that I don’t feel rushed with her.

4:20- Gotta finish up the dictations, phone calls, and paperwork. As I’m working, another doctor comes to inform me that one of her patients is coming to see me tomorrow to follow-up on an HIV test. It’s positive and I’ll have to tell him. Can’t wait for that… NOT!

4:50- Pretty much done. Chat with my nurse about some things that need to get done by the end of the day and some stuff for the next day. She tries to convince me to change my work hours so that she can have different hours. When she implies that my triathlon training is not that important, I get irritated, but keep it to myself.

4:55- Last check on some X-rays and any messages.

5:00-5:20- Ready to go as soon as the clock hits 5! I love days when I get out on time. Make some personal calls on the way home. Good time to catch-up with friends.

5:20-5:30- Go to my parents’ house as I am going to eat dinner with them. Easier to begin my run from their house. Get a little snack and I’m off.

5:30-6:30 Doing another workout in the dark, but I don’t mind. Good way to relieve the stress of the day. Ipod is on and I’m able to zone-out on my day and focus on the run.

6:30- Back at the parents’ house and starving! Help finish up making dinner (I’m always on salad detail), and we sit down. Nice to be sitting finally today. Great conversation. Use their computer to check my e-mail.

7:45- Head home to get ready for another busy day tomorrow. Gotta get the bike out of the car, and remember that the tire is flat and I need to change it. Put together a bag of food for tomorrow as well as unpack all the clothes and equipment from today and pack for another busy one. Try to clean up the house a bit.

8:45- Finally in bed. Got a heat pack on a sore ankle. Reading an OK book. Sound machine on to hopefully help my head stop spinning and help me fall asleep. Out of bed a few times to throw stuff in my gym bag that I forgot to pack earlier.

?9:30- I’m out for the count.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

An Epic Start to 2010

I wasn't joking about seizing every opportunity in 2010 that came my way. So when invited to do the Julian Pie Challenge ride with Jen, Tim, Elizabeth, Julie, John and Pat, I quickly cleared my calendar.

It was an amazing day out! Perfect weather and we could see all the way to Point Loma and beyond.

Don't be fooled by our small size... Jen and I can put away a lot of pie.

Julie likes pie too!

I think team wore out the boys!!!

Here's to more Epic adventures in 2010!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Thoughts on 2009

This morning I thought to myself, "Where did 2009 go?" and then I looked at my training log. Swim: 131 hours Bike: 362 hours Run: 165 hours. I know this pales in comparison to others logs, but add in 2200 hours of work, and I'm starting to get an idea.

It was an fabulous year... one of the best yet! Here are some highlights:

January: I started working with an awesome coach, Lesley Paterson. This time last year I had no idea that the game would be totally changing. I feel incredibly blessed to have meet a coach who understands me so well. We have been told (by her husband!) that we were separated at birth. Along the way I've had my ass-kicked, but have formed a wonderful friendship.

My little bro, Mark, married Renee! It was a beautiful day. One that won't be forgotten by our friends and family for long to come. Those two were definitely made for one another. It's been fun watching them grow as a married couple.

Somewhere during the month I realized that the severe nerve pain I had been having in my left leg for 3 1/2 years was magically gone. After three PT's, two internists (myself excluded), a neurologist, an ART therapist, a MAT therapist, a chiropractor and many tears, I was finally pain free. I pretty much didn't believe that the pain would remain gone, but it has! What did it you ask? K-Laser therapy. I now swear by it... but it's expensive. Thanks Jen Litteral!

I raced Oceanside 70.3, and it was a terrible day. I'd never had a race go so badly. It was a very humbling experience though. I often learn a lot more from my failures than from my successes, and this experience taught me a lot!

I finally got up my courage to race Wildflower. It was a fantastic weekend from hanging out with friends, to camping, to wine tasting afterwards, to a fabulous race. I now understand when people say "There is really no other race that compares!" I'll be back in 2010 for sure!

I raced every weekend this month. The Rock and Roll Marathon, then a club race, then a 10K and finally SD International. It was a great month filled with lots of hard efforts and even more smiles. Was it too much?

Finally got some time off of work and training to go to Oahu with Kristin. We had a great time laying on the beach, eating a ton of local food and visiting friends. And then there was the Freedom 10K. It was on the same course as the Xterra World Trail Running Championship, and it was amazing! I managed to get very muddy, lead a pack of strong guys totally off course and still win the race!

Spend an awesome weekend in Santa Barbara hanging out with friends and racing the Santa Barbara Triathlon. Loved walking around State Street and eating lots of great food. We even made it to the wine country for an afternoon. Very pretty race, with lots of hills, which I loved!
I began riding with the Slow Step Boys. I'm like the little sister who tags along for bike rides with the boys. Along the way I've been teased, laughed at and yes even dropped... but I've also become a stronger rider!

SOMA was the final race of the season, and I was so happy to share the experience with my parents. We had a great time exploring Scottsdale, and I think they enjoyed seeing me race? The overall race didn't go as well as hoped, but I was still really happy and had tons of fun.

My practice at work really began to take off. Tons of new patients, some new responsibility and lots of long hours. I realized how fortunate I am to have job I love so much!

It has been a month of seeing friends and family, which I think has left me more exhausted than the rest of the year. I've had some good laughs, great conversations and eaten too much good food.

So what's in store for 2010? My focus will be seizing all opportunity that comes my way! And have lots of fun along the journey...