Saturday, January 17, 2009


This past week we had our team pictures taken. This is the first bit of evidence that I'm actually on the SCC Track Team, not just bringing cookies by and fetching water bottles. I asked the photographer if he'd mind emailing me a copy of our team picture so I could put it on my blog. He was very accommodating and also included my "solo" picture in the email. LOL. I'm sorry, I can't even post it, it's so bad. And it will be there, for all to see on the school website.....along with my lack of stellar results. But I'm working on that. After dropping a lung on the track last week during our "introduction" to speedwork, it's apparent this old lady has a long way to go. Coach says this coming Tuesday is going to be a tough day....he actually used that word "tough". Considering his description of the workout which almost killed me, I'm a pinch anxious with a heap of giddy. Bring it on. To really spice it up, Tuesday is my first Biology test.

So here are the girls. Pictured is the entire track team. I mostly train with the distance runners. That little girl to my left is Katie and to her left is Melissa. These two handed me my ass last week and they weren't the only ones. Over the course of the season, I'm sure I'll have more photos of them. I'm front and center with the spider hands, the hair (?) and the orange shoe laces. I'm so glad I reap so much joy from laughing at myself or this whole experience would be painful.

I am grateful for laughter. Eye watering, gut wrenching, pee your pants, laughter.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Routine

Closing in on the second week of school and practice, I've developed a routine. The consistency of my routine seems to calm me but I still get a little choked up once in a while.

Wake up, get ready, make kids breakfast, pack their lunches (keep forgetting to pack my own), try to scarf breakfast down while Hayden bounces around the kitchen trying to make me laugh (he has a high rate of success) and Tabor reads "facts about animals" to me (I think he is trying to contribute to my education). Get out the door and drop the boys off at school.

Once the car is quiet, I put on "Suite for Solo Cello no. 1 in G major". I play this a few times and I think it is one of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard. It reminds me of the beauty in things that are unpredictable or uncontrollable and how often, the things in our life that we don't predict are the most appreciated. After my cello song, I go on to a little Tracy Chapman or other random artist so I can belt out the notes. Get to school, drive around for 40 minutes looking for a parking spot (although lately I've gone right for the far away spot and saved a lot of time and find it's not that far after all). I spend the day running from class to class and then after that, running some more.

Today, we did our first round of speedwork on the track in the 30 degree weather and I got my rear handed to me. These girls are fast and this was just the first time. I made the rookie mistake of trying to keep up with them on the sprints and by #6 (out of 16) I was cooked. I thought I tasted blood in the back of my throat. I've heard people speak of this sensation but never experienced it until today. It was hard-much harder than I expected. My coach told me that I lean back when I sprint. I guess that's not what you're supposed to do when trying to propel your body forward chasing little girls with cheetah legs and lungs the size of garbage bags. I finished all 16 sprints wandering aimlessly looking for my left lung I dropped on the track-where's the guy with the scalpel? Open up my trachea so I can breath! And that was what coach called an "introduction" to speedwork. uh huh. You mean it doesn't get easier from here? In good time is what they say. In blood, sweat and tears is what I say. But I've already tasted the blood and it's not so bad.

Back again tomorrow.

I am grateful for hard work, it makes the easy days that much better.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Week One-DOWN

I survived my first week of school and track (well, practically.....Monday was a snow day).

I learned some Algebra, memorized some biology words-n-stuff and even wrote an in-class essay! Who knew?

I have to share a bit about track.....considering this IS a triathlon/running blog. Day #2 consisted of running with some of the group and dodging snowballs and bodies being flung around me. Boys are hard on eachother. Entertaining nonetheless. I felt right at home :)

Everyone has been accepting of the old lady on the team. My coach told me to bring my boys to practice on Saturday morning because he brings his kids and that's one more day of practice that I can train with the team. We ended up working out in the pool on Friday and Saturday in a manner I'm not accustomed. No goggles required....although I could have used them because of the splashing that was happening between the boys (seriously). I was SO tempted to show up with my swim cap, goggles and zoomers on and just sit at the side of the pool kickin' my feet. But I thought I'd break em' in easy....they still aren't sure what to do with me.

We played some water polo (which I totally sucked at, I felt more like a buoy bobbing, watching the ball fly back and forth. So I worked on my water treading skills and fantasized about being able to score a goal (which will never happen-that's why I'm a triathlete). No points for me on that front.

Coach told me to run today and again tomorrow. I went out and had a good solid run today that felt as close to perfect as I could have asked for. Since my lupus diagnosis, starting the meds and going off of the meds, my runs haven't felt super or fast. I decided that I could manage my symptoms by taking really good care of myself. After the disastrous marathon, both my doctor and I agreed that the meds were probably hurting my athletic performance more than helping. But today, the chorus was at full volume and I was reminded why I love to run. I feel like the old me is coming back, rearing her little head and I'm excited, really excited. Next week it's time to get my swim back on and throw in some trainer rides. The next month is going to be all about balance.....a fine delicate balance.

I am grateful for running. How it has changed my life, what it does for my health, how it makes me feel and the opportunities this simple, physical act has presented me. Good stuff. I still have a long way to run but I am, most definitely, enjoying the journey.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Taking on the New Year with Kids, School, Track and Team Timex

My first day of school and track was canceled on Monday but today, the week officially started.

After a sub par night of sleep (I think I was a little excited), Shelby and I got ready and headed out for school (she came along for the ride for the ENTIRE day and just waited outside my classes.) I had a moment in the car when it all just hit me (this happens periodically) and I got a little choked up. This adventure I'm embarking on is all so big and wonderful....that once in a while, I'm overcome by the greatness of it all. I'm excited, I'm overwhelmed and plum full of anticipation for what is to come. Of course when I get choked up, Shelby follows. So we laughed and cried and had a good long ride to school. After driving around the "off-road-ice" parking lot for 50 minutes, we were able to kidnap a cute young lady and take her to her parking spot. Task #1 completed. Here's me with my backpack on, behind the Subaru.

English 101 was my first class of the day. Notice that bright pink slip outside on the wall? Yeah, that's telling me that there's been a classroom change. Neither Shelby nor I read that because we were too busy with our photo shoot. Since I'm a sharp girl and I had my "thinking cap" on, I picked up on it shortly after and jetted to the other building. Good thing I got the Northface backpack so everyone will be able to see me in the dark.

As you all know, I'm very soft-spoken. So, I had to tell Shelby to keep it down while walking through the halls.

After English, Math and Biology, it was time to meet the track team. We met up in a classroom before running. I can say with confidence, I am, by far, the oldest member of the team (by a good 15 years). I was getting some looks, I'm sure they were wondering if I was the new coach or someones mother. I wanted to blurt out "I'm the team mom! I'll have cookies and cold remedies for you next week...and wear sunscreen!". But I just listened and was quiet (shocker, I know). We had a choice to run outside on the ice or on the treadmill. I chose the treadmill because it had a better view than my wall at home and I'd been walking through puddles all day.

I can honestly say, it was a really fun day. When I got home, Shelby made me do my homework and the boys were sincerely interested in helping me. When Tabor saw my biology book, he told me I could borrow his biology books too. Weird reversal of roles....but in a good way.

This great day was preceded by the news that I am now a member of the Timex Multisport Team. Throughout this year I have met several members of this team and am inspired by the people they are and their athleticism. I am SO honored to be a part of this team and look forward to a great experience.

I am grateful for the people in my life who inspire me, love me for who I am and remind me that life is about embracing the moment and seeing every moment for the gift that it is. LET'S DO IT!!!

p.s. I love my brother!