30 March 2010

Nothing in particular

My friend Tricia called me out - I've totally been slacking in updating my blog. Who knew a puppy could be so much work :) It has been a busy few weeks and I'll post pictures soon, I'm just too lazy to try and find my camera cord at the moment. I should also write a race report for the Shamrock 1/2 marathon - first race of 2010 - and maybe I'll eventually get to it. So, here is just a compilation of random observations I've made over the past few weeks:

- The wonders of the guest bedroom. Not only convenient for when you have guests, but serves as a great alternative sleeping spot when your puppy is loud and cranky at 2am and you have a race in two days. (also a great excuse to get a bed ALLLLL to yourself... but shhhh, don't tell Mark I said that). I've slept in the guest room three times in the last 2 weeks and it has been ahhhh-mazing.

- There are NO SHOPS in NoVa that sell Carbo Pro 1200. My coach was slightly horrified when I listed off to her one day the food I typically eat during an IM bike (fritos, PowerBars, sweet potatoes, PB&J sandwiches, pita chips, granola bars, etc) and gently suggested that perhaps I should look into some "lighter on the gut" options. I've heard about Carbo Pro 1200 - a 16oz drink that has 1200 calories - and I've been curious about trying it. I bet it's like super thick cough syrup, but the less amount of liquid I need to drink, the better, I don't like all of it sloshing around in my stomach. I discovered tonight that my only option for buying the stupid bottles is online. And shipping costs are almost as much as one bottle. I bought one of each flavor (fingers crossed that they come in before this weekend, seeing as I went with the cheapest shipping option) and I can try them out on my ride. If things work out well, this drink may be replacing my bike buffet.

- It's cherry blossom season in DC - my most favorite time of the year! I went for a run down by the Potomac and all of the blossoms last weekend - it was great. And this weekend's weather is going to be perfect for enjoying the blooms.

- Puppies are time consuming. But they are cute, so that makes up for it.

- I realized that IM France is less than three months away. I have alot of work to do between now and then! And IM Wisconsin is a little more than five months away! IM season is going to go by so fast and it hasn't even started yet!

- I used to have sympathy for Bissell when the dog would hump him and nip at him. Now I've realized that Bissell is constantly egging the dog on and is totally asking for it. No more sympathy. He even tries to steal the dog's food while the dog is in the middle of eating. I'd bite the cat too if he did that to me.

There, Tricia! No more blogger-slacking!

09 March 2010

Training makes you tired sometimes

I'm tired. Maybe it's because I've stayed up past my bedtime lately. Maybe it's because my dog snores, grunts, and groans in his sleep, waking me up. Or maybe.... it's the triathlon training. I think it's the triathlon training because I'm tired in a good way. Not in a "I'm-so-exhausted-from-no-sleep-my-eyes-hurt" kind of way, like how I was during the whole 2+ years of grad school. No, this is a "I-an-still-feel-my-workout, I'm-starving, and I'm-asleep-the-moment-my-head-hits-the-pillow" kind of tired. I like this kind of tired. I feel like I'm accomplishing something. And I think I actually am. I've had a few easy runs over the past week, easy as in Zone 1. I've always hated Zone 1 because I could never stay in Z1 while running. That has started to change, and I can run at a decent, easy clip in Z1 now. My pace in Zone 2 has also gotten faster. The training is working - I am running faster than I was two months ago at basically the same cardiovascular effort. I have my first race of 2010 in a week and a half - the Shamrock 1/2 marathon in Virginia Beach. The plan is to PR - and if I run the way Jen has told me to run, then I think I just might. Though she recommended me to run until I'm on the verge of losing my cookies, and that's a line I have yet to cross. Maybe that's the line I need to cross to have a breakthrough race. We shall see, I don't know if I'm brave enough to do that. We all know how much I hate the whole concept of losing cookies.

In other (belated) news - this month's Triathlete magazine (yeah, it came out like 3 weeks ago, I'm a little behind the curve) voted the Savageman Triathlon the Hardest Triathlon on Earth. They had a whole article on it and everything. And I would have to agree - it is the hardest race course I have ever raced on - as well as the coolest. But I've done it - and here's the photographic proof!

04 March 2010

Gunshots on the evening commute

So, we'll start with the most interesting news first, well, the two pieces of the most interesting news. Yesterday I was notified that I my application for a Presidential Management Fellow slot was rejected. FAIL. I was disappointed, I figured I had a decent shot and I've always wanted to work for the government. But I suppose a security clearance, 6+ years of work experience, international work, and a 3.9 GPA is insufficient. Oh well. And I'm actually quite happy in my current job and in the upcoming months I should have some really interesting projects coming up.
I was kind of mopey yesterday, but it's not the end of the world and there are worse things out there than a PMF rejection. I got into work late this morning because I did both my swim and my run this morning. My father-in-law arrived in town on a red eye flight for work, and I had a chance to see him before I headed into the office. Because I arrived late, I stayed later than usual, leaving the office around 6:25. Caught the metro like usual, took it one stop to the Pentagon where I catch my bus to get home. I strategically get on the metro so I get off close to the escalator and can get up to the bus station as quick as possible, so I don't miss a bus. When you're waiting for the bus, people informally stand in a line. Today I was first, quite happy about that since I have a favorite seat I like to sit in on the bus and I was guaranteed to get that seat today. And it was a short wait, the bus pulled up about three minutes later and I was first in line. Got on the bus and as I was walking back to my seat, I suddenly hear the bus drive yell "Get down, Get down" and he starts shutting the door and people outside start running and ducking. My first thought was that ice must be falling from the bus station roof - no idea why I thought that, there's no ice anywhere in DC except on the bike path. Then I noticed everyone on the inside of the bus was getting down. And then I heard the gunshots. So strange - everyone was so calm on the bus - we just quietly threw ourselves down on the floor and the driver took off. Everyone outside was running and within moments police were swarming everywhere.
Well, now the PMF rejection doesn't seem like such a big deal. It's all about perspective. And I think I'll bike commuting to work in the near future.

Speaking of biking (and swimming and running) - this week has been quite good workout-wise. Going hard when I have to go hard, and taking it easy during the easy workouts and sets within workouts. The swim kicked my butt today, but my easy run was actually a run in Z1 - I never manage to keep my heart rate in Z1 when I'm running, so I think this is progress we are seeing. Need to check what my workout is for tomorrow morning. And speaking of that, I should probably get to bed.