Thursday, March 11, 2010

Going to the chapel...

A lot of people think it was Steve's idea to get married at the end of a 100 mile, mountain climbing bike ride but in was mine. It was so poetic - the hills, the valleys, obvious metaphors for the shared lives of marriage. I loved it; I was so caught up in the metaphor that I totally neglected to think about the reality. Which isn't really that unusual for people contemplating marriage. I think most everyone tends to be somewhat starry eyed and in love or why contemplate marriage in the first place, right?

Me though, I wasn't starry eyed about marriage, I was starry eyed about my metaphor. My century, 11,000ft of climbing -bike ride. It wasn't until the night before the ride, as I lay sleepless for hour after hour, did I realize that I was insane; insane yes, and stupid. Steve lay snoring next to me; content probably in the knowledge that he'd not only done this ride before, but he'd ridden in the alps, done three ironman races and countless century rides. There was no sleep for me....

I had only done one century, and it didn't include 11,000ft of climbing. Our marriage century was called Mountains of Misery - really, what is there to add to that? It is the hardest century on the east coast - the last four miles are considered a Hors Category, which in english means damn near impossible even if you do have a mountain bike cassette on your rear wheel. I was sleepless and petrified. I was definitely 'in a fix' since our family and friends would be waiting at the top of that last Hors Category to see us climb it and then to see us get married. I couldn't very well back out could I?

So how was it you ask? It was literally a nightmare. I was exhausted before I got on my bike and only got more tired as the day progressed. By mile 40 I was complaining regularly, by mile 60 I was threatening to quit and at mile 80 (which sadistically or conveniently depending on your point of view -includes a rest stop in the parking lot where the ride starts) I took off my shoes, my helmet and tried hard to quit. Steve, never the most empathic person - "well if you want to be a quitter".....I mean really who could quit after that?

The irony of this is that my metaphor really turned out to be more accurate and true than I ever could have imagined. The hills were brutal, painful and sweaty. The heart stopping descents terrifying. We saw the worst of each other, I complained and tried to quit, he was impossible, impatient and nonempathetic. We fought, I cried, he yelled and at the end of it all, we got married.

Monday, January 25, 2010


Change - a. To give a completely different form or appearance to; transform

Reading over my past blog posts I realized many things have really changed for me since the fall of 2008. Positive changes. Although never a fan of consistency - mostly because I had no idea how to accomplish such a thing - I made a vow to begin to schedule run training. So for three months now Mon is easy day, Tues is speedwork day, Wed bike, Thurs 'tempo' day and Saturday long run day. Sunday is long bike day and Friday is a freebie - for now anyway.

I missed a bike session here and there but have been pretty consistent with the run schedule. I have gradually increased my long run distance as well as the distances on the Mon and Thurs run. I do the same run every Tues and in two months have knocked two minutes off the time it takes me to do that run AND the run is easier. Running has gotten much much better for me!

I attribute about 70% of that to the consistent schedule. I don't have to think about what day to do which run, I just follow the schedule and adjust only my mileage.

The other 30% of the credit goes to a consistent hot yoga practice - consistent as in two times a week for about six months. I love yoga. I feel so much better. No more achy hips, sore knees and general all over feeling of being 152 yrs old. Yoga is the perfect compliment to the pounding and punishing aspect of running and I love it!

I'm still not fast, not by a long shot. But I am having fun running and I feel good, strong, awesome even.

My first goal is the Shamrock half marathon in March. I wish I could say my goal is to break 2 hours - how about: my dream goal is under 2 hours, my -not realistic but hey it could happen goal is under 2:15 and my -I can probably do that goal is to break 2:20.

Distance series this weekend. 15k which really for me is a long run not a race. Race report next....