Saturday, October 29, 2005
And I have tried running again, this evening. After my 28 minutes the other day, my quads hurt for 3, count 'em, 3 days. Today they are OK and I did a cautious 15 minutes. If OK tomorrow, I'll do a cautious 20. But we have plans for kayaking, and also maybe some hiking. Now that we've decided to stay a few days!!
I have got to get running again. RNR Arizona is in less than 3 months.
Steve is building a campfire. Guess I'll go out. Maybe take my guitar.
Oh, yes, that reminds me!!! Our son Jonathan tried out for Nashville Star today! They were doing preliminary auditions in Morgantown, WV, which is about 40 miles from where he lives. He's been playing and singing country music in his living room for a couple years now and his wife, Jamie, urged him to go to the tryouts. He even bought a new guitar for it. He had 30 seconds and a list of tunes to pick from. He practiced up "Amarillo By Morning" and sounded really good, but they had over 500 hopefuls and only 20 spots and.... Jon didn't make it in. I mean, a lot of those singers do it professionally in bands, bars and wherever. This is the first time Jon's moved out of the living room. But I gotta hand it to him... it took real guts!!
Thursday, October 27, 2005
We went kayaking for a couple hours today on Lake Taneycomo (what kind of name is that for a lake??) past Bronson, MO. Nice trip. There were great blue herons which took off from the water and flapped huge winge over our heads.
Yesterday I ran a couple miles -- 2, 2.5, maybe 3 but I doubt it -- 28 minutes anyway, hilly local roads. Today my quads are killing me. I hadn't run for about 10 days because even short runs were giving me sore quads and I figured I wasn't recovered from Chesapeakeman and I'd take a break. Now I'm sore from running after a 10-day layoff. CM was over 3 weeks ago... I doubt it would still be making me sore.
The signal held out long enough to send it! Whoopee! Now watch, I'll lose it with this one.
I'm going to try publishing this... hope it works.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
The campground here in Hollister, MO, assigned us a site with a nice shot at the southern sky except for the tree on the neighboring site, which blocks all reception angles from our site. Luckily, there's cable TV and yfi. My own computer doesn't receive yfi, but Steve's does; however, the service is s-l-o-w and spotty. Sometimes we can connect, sometimes not.
We had better be someplace with reliable signal on the morning of November 6, because I will SCREAM if I can't log on resulting in missing registration for IM Florida 2006. I will just have to find some friendly homeowner willing to let me use theirs, or something.
"Home," Garrett County, MD, is in the national news this morning, on both CNN and The Weather Channel, because of a foot of snow. Power is out and schools are closed. Snow and winter weather are what put Garrett County, MD on the map. Vacationers in a 200-mile radius know about Deep Creek Lake, but it's weather that gets the area national attention once a year or so. And here I am in Missouri where the temperature is expected to be in the 60'sF today. We got frost last night but that doesn't count for this snow-lover. I want to be back where heavy snow is covering the autumn leaves.
Hold your breaths, folks... I'm about to click "Publish Post" and hope I don't lose this a second time.
Monday, October 24, 2005
Whoo-eeee. I found the control panel for my computer, and changed to Central Time. Without asking Steve how to do it! AND succeeded in copying this web image to my files and then to my blog. All by myself. I scare myself. I know I can supposedly copy a web image directly, but I haven't made THAT much progress.
And now I'm going to bed, because although my newly-reset computer says it's 9:46pm, my body clock says it's 10:46. My rough calculations tell me I've probably spent 4 hours using the computer this evening. Tomorrow I start timing. And then deciding where to go from there. If anywhere.
...thank goodness. The campground where we stayed for 3 days in Kentucky was nice, tree-covered, but "shaded" means "no satellite for TV or internet." We watched a few movies on DVD, read a lot, and went to bed early. It amazed us to learn how TV and the internet alter our lives.
I'll have to ponder this. I know I easily spend 3 hours a day on email and other internet activity. Starting tomorrow I'm going to run my stopwatch to time exactly how much time it really is.
Too late to start today... I've already put in a good amount of time, catching up on 3 days' worth of email, and most of that I just skimmed, picking out the urgent, saving the rest for later. And I have things I've thought of the last 3 days that I want to look up on the internet. I'm going to start making a list.
The time on my watch, above, isn't the time I spent doing anything; it's just the time of day... Central Daylight Time, since we're now in Missouri. We're staying in Charleston, in a commercial community called "Boomland," which boasts "One of THE LARGEST SELECTIONS OF FIREWORKS IN THE WORLD" just like that, bold caps with that teeny-tiny disclaimer before it, so you can't see it till you're up close. Too funny. It is a huge fireworks place, though. As big as a good-sized grocery store. Maybe not a Super Wal-Mart, but a large grocery store. The other half, which is twice as big, is all kinds of theme-based statues and baubles... Native American, Mexican, Southwestern, pigs, eagles, dragons, cedar boxes, horses, woodland critters... I picked up a dragon scupture to test its weight (considering how hard it would be to mail for Christmas), and caused it to drop a large heavy glass globe it was holding, which rolled off and struck a dragon-claw statuette, which fell to the floor in several pieces. ~Sigh~ I offered to pay for it (it was only $2.99) but they didn't accept. Maybe I'll find one on the internet and have the company mail it. That way we won't have to carry it around till we happen on a post office, and wrap and mail it ourselves.
The internet... can't live with it, can't live without it.
Thursday, October 20, 2005
Here's my funky-different Ironman tattoo, just above my ankle! I didn't want the typical M-dot because it wasn't an M-dot race. So I had to doctor it to convey the message without being the actual trademark. A black-eyed Susan, Maryland's state flower, seemed appropriate. I got one off the Internet that wasn't too perfect, missing a few pieces and a little off-center, not quite what people would expect... like me. The artist said it will brighten up and be clearer as it heals.
I got it on my left leg, to be more visible those who pass me on the bike and run, and on their return from an out-and-back where I'm still on my out trip.
What I didn't realize till I saw the picture is... do I really have all those freckles on my legs??? I had no idea.
The artist himself was a trip. Really, really nice guy, clean-cut looking and sounding. He had the radio tuned to a Christian station, which was the last thing I expected to hear in a tattoo studio. He wore a t-shirt printed with one of those name tags you wear at a meeting, the stick-on kind that says, "Hello! I'm..." and in the name space was the word "Forgiven." We talked theology while he did my tattoo.
And yes, I was satisfied with all the pathogen-precautions, cleanliness and technique. I'm a nurse and it all met the standards I have learned and practiced myself.
I went through a few thoughts of, "Suppose I don't want this anymore later in life," but then realized, hey, this IS later in life... I'm already more than halfway through my life. Even if I don't stay in triathlon till I'm 80, I'll always have this emblem that says, "I DID IT!!!"
Monday, October 17, 2005
We finally made family history last night and got a picture of my mother, the oldest living member of her family, with all of her descendants. It took some doing, getting them all together in one place at one time, but we finally have it. We had to wait for Avery (in black) to get home from work, which made Gracie (front left) and Collin (front right) way late going to their dad's, who had them for the night and school the next day; he said "Have 'em ready for bed and send them over the minute they're done," so Gracie's hair is still wet from her shower and they're in their pajamas. Jon (back row), Abbie (on his lap) and Jamie had brought my mother for a one-day overnight trip 250 miles. They were leaving the next morning at 7 to make Abbie's twice-yearly appointment with her cardiologist on their way back. What a whirlwind! I wish the ones in the front row, especially me, had been able to be farther away from the camera. Why on earth didn't I have Abbie sit with the other kids in front and put myself on the sofa with the grownups? I look like a giant. And of course 9-yr-old Collin had to make dorky faces at the camera in every shot. But we finally got it: my mother, her only child (me), my 3 children, and their kids, all in one place.
ID's, left to right:
Front: Gracie, me, Collin
Back: Jon with Abbie, Avery, my mother, Valerie
Saturday, October 15, 2005
I'm keeping my URL and address the same as it was, for now, so you don't have to change your links....
But this week I'm out of steam. We're here in Ohio, near Columbus, visiting our two married daughters and their immediate and blended families. There's been so much family stuff I haven't been online, haven't been in contact, nor have my running shoes been in contact with the road.
I'm out of steam, but I'm borrowing spirit from all these friends today to get me out there. I'll be checking Ironmanlive.com throughout the day to see how my Kona friends are doing. I've checked the Baltimore Marathon site to see if there's live athlete-tracking but don't see any :-( But I'm putting on my shorts and leashing up my dog and going out there for an hour. I haven't moved my body for almost a week. During my taper week I itched to move, even when I felt sick. During the week after ChesapeakeMan I itched to move, and did so, as soon as my legs weren't stiff anymore. This week, I'm feeling sluggish and unmotivated. I don't want to bother.
If my friends can do it, I can do it. All of you are doing more than running for yourselves.... you're running for each other, you're running for the world, you're running for life, you're running for me. Each of us has a message of strength and courage built into our running. And the rest of us are grateful.
HOW IT WENT
6 miles, 1:02, the first 3 miles felt good, but then as soon as I turned around I found out I'd had a tailwind. Fairfield County, OH, unlike Garrett and Dorchester Counties in MD, has logical winds: tailwind on the way out becomes headwind on the way back. Anyway, the return trip was harder. I struggled the last mile. This afternoon I took a nap and I kind of ache. I think I still haven't recovered fully from ChesapeakeMan. But I ran!
Thursday, October 13, 2005
Top: Chain-link fence where visitors have left tokens of remembrance and gratitude. Hats, flowers, school projects, lapel pins, t-shirts, necklaces, stuffed animals...
Center: Fire-and-rescue personnel all over the country have given helmets representing their stations,
Bottom: Flags over wooden angel cut-outs (above)bearing the name of each person aboard Flight 93 -- the flight that fought back.
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
Very pretty view as we open the door of our camper here outside Somerset, PA. The sky has cleared and these are prettier than the shots I posted earlier, which had white skies.
Later today son Jon, his wife Jamie, and their daughter Abbie are meeting us for a trip down to Shanksville (site of Flight 93 crash.) We've been there a couple times but Jon and Jamie have not. We're only about 50 miles from "home."
Monday, October 10, 2005
Yesterday I posted Journey's "Rottweiler" look. These shots, however, are her "hound dog" look.
Any guesses as to her lineage? You can click on the photos for a larger view. She's about 50 pounds, a little smaller than the average Lab.
Not aggressive, but will take on a dog that dares her. She also puts on a great "Stay the hell away from my owner" act, which is respected by humans, since she looks like a Rott when excited and is far from being a small dog. But she's a pussycat with people who pet her, dogs who want to play, children, babies, and... pussycats. She loves our cat Annie, who lies with her giving her tongue baths. Annie never showed any fear of Journey from the moment we brought her in (fully-grown.) She just kind of rolled her eyes like, "Oh, great, a new dog." Journey's reaction was a shug and "Oh, I see you have a cat. What's in this other room?" Oh, and bunnies. Someone had a pet bunny tied out in their yard, and I crept Journey closer inch by inch, restraining her, till close enough for her to sniff it. She and the bunny sniffed noses, then she got down on her elbows play-style and wagged her tail, then lay down with her chin on her paws in that "pleading" pose, eyes shining, tail wagging. "Please play with me..." The bunny showed no fear at all, only curiosity.
Sunday, October 09, 2005
Actually she's not my chief cheering section... my friends are!!! But I'd like to watch my friends jump up and down and whirl around in circles when I say, "You wanna run?" And look hopeful when they see me changing my clothes, and get ecstatic when they see the running shoes going on :-)
Saturday, October 08, 2005
Anyway... I did succeed in uploading a profile portrait and one picture. It's a start.
I still don't have it right, though. I got it from Nancy's blog. When I tried to get it from the SAME SOURCE she got it from, it came out blank with a little X, and when I clicked on that I got "URL not supported" or something. But I was able to upload it from Nancy's posted image.
Maybe if I want to post pictures, I'll send them to Nancy, have her load them to her blog, and patch them in from there :-)
Friday, October 07, 2005
Thursday, October 06, 2005
.... and I'm really sad. His name was Fish. I've had him for over a year and he has traveled everywhere with us, in our RV. He's lived in a clear plastic storage jar with stones from Lake Superior and pretty silk plants. When we've been moving I've screwed the lid onto the jar and put him in the sink. When we were parked he lived on the dining table. Whenever we sat there he'd come to the side of the jar and wag his tail and fins happily, and I'd feed him.
The worst of it is, I poisoned him. There were algae growing in his jar, and I transferred him to a new home, a pretty pickle jar. I cleaned the Lake Superior stones and silk plants with a household cleaner containing chlorine bleach, to kill the algae, and rinsed them very, very well, extremely well. I waited until I was sure he had adjusted to his new pickle jar and clean water (I use distilled water for fish and it never hurts them) without adverse effects, two or three days, and then put the stones and plants back in, yesterday. This morning he was sick. Lethargic. I took him out of the jar and put him in clean distilled water. He languished for a while and then appeared to be better, moving around more but still not himself. I aerated his water by dipping some up in a shotglass and pouring it back in to make bubbles, to make more oxygen available to him. I put him into new distilled water every couple hours, hoping that osmosis would transfer the poison out of him (as my eye doctor recommended once when I got something on my contact lenses.) But just as we were starting supper he sank to the bottom of his dish and stopped trying. I am so sad. I liked my fish and he has traveled over 10,000 miles with us. Hardly anyone takes a pet fish with them when they live and travel full-time in an RV. I've never seen anyone else with a fish.
I could cry. And it was just a fish, for petesake.
Just a fish...
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
Monday, October 03, 2005
ChesapeakeMan Ultra-Distance Triathlon
Times by my watch:
T1 (Swim-to-bike transition): 11:09
T2 (Bike-to-run): 6:54
Total time 14:58. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect to break 15. I would have been happy to break 17, ecstatic to break 16. Breaking 15 is just unreal.
It's two days later now and I have not posted this to my blog till now because I've been doing a lot of e-mail about it (as many of my visitors know) and also I'm t-i-r-e-d and haven't had the energy to mess with my blog since I've been having trouble with my formatting and templates. Eventually I'll get it all figured out.
For now, I'm resting... recovering, as if I'm getting over an illness, except the triathlon was a lot more fun and didn't feel as bad as an illness. In fact, it didn't feel bad at all, except for the last 40 miles or so on the bike, where I started to feel like I must have lost my saddle and was riding on my seatpost. And like someone was shoving a lit matchstick under my left second toenail. Other than those minor annoyances, I felt pretty good. The run didn't feel any worse towards the end than just a regular marathon.
I am about as sore as after marathons I was undertrained for.... but a lot more tired, even more today (the second day) than yesterday (the day after the triathlon.) I am really, really tired today. So tired I feel as if I'm recovering from the flu or pneumonia, not a recreational event.... So tired I feel almost ill, except I have no fever (I checked) or any overt signs of illness (tissue swelling, decreased or increased weight or urination, loss of skin turgor) or any distinct symptoms (like headache, sore throat, aches) other than just muscle soreness that worsens transiently after I've held too still for a while.
They tell me this is normal. What did I expect.... to feel, well, normal?
But I am so glad I did this. I am so glad I trained the way I did, and so glad I finished, and am actually entertaining thoughts of doing it again (but not next week...) I looked forward to it for so long (trepidation and all) and now that it's done, I don't have it to look forward to anymore.
The metaphor of losing virginity is so apt. Read my last sentence. It's just like that. Except, in the case of virginity... (assuming it was good like it's supposed to be) you look forward to doing it again and again, having it get better and better the more you do it and the more you learn how.
What am I saying? Am I now married to this?
You know, I really, really enjoyed doing it, every minute of it, and I made a conscious effort to relish every second, knowing I'd be going through this "It's over" phase. I would rather be back on the bike than sitting here no longer having it all to look forward to, no longer in the midst of having it finally happening, feeling so strong and happy and determined. No wonder people get addicted to this.
Except, even if I do it again, it will never hold the wonder of that first time.