"...In the end, people either have excuses or experiences; reasons or results; buts or
brilliance. They either have what they wanted or they have a detailed list of all the rational reasons why not."

~ Anonymous
(taken from Matt Erbele's, It Takes Time to Get Good)

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


I have apparently learned NOTHING in the 5 years since I started doing all of this endurance sports stuff.


Case in point, this weekend I was cleared to get back to training so I decided to act as if I had taken no time off and did not just have surgery.


On Saturday, Run Buddy and I decided kind of last minute to try a bike ride, so I powered up with a hearty breakfast of half a banana (Exhibit A of RBR Brilliance)

We headed out with no clear plan of what we were doing in terms of distance or where we were going. As is always the case when I train with my uber-competitive Run buddy (ok, I am a smidge guilty of it myself) we head out WAY too fast. I think initially we were both thinking we would do about 20 miles to get back into it, but at 10.5 miles out we stopped to access where the hell we were (translation: we where a teensy bit lost. Oops) and how far we wanted to ride today and me saying this ride was harder for me than I had hoped for.

This lead to full scale, semi-hysterical, laughing/crying breakdown on the side of the road (I know it is an odd response, but it is how I roll. *shrugs*) about how there was NO WAY IN HELL I could get ready for a full iron triathlon by the end of July, yet I had to train for it anyway because my hubby wants me to and thinks I am capable of anything seemingly impossible, and he will be spending this summer going through radiation treatment, and I do not want him to think for even one second that he was in any way the reason for, what I am certain will be come to be known as, "RBR's Iron Failure Numero Dos"....

Breathe RBR, breathe. *wipes snot on sleeve*

My Run Buddy starts punching me in the arm to make me stop crying saying that was her big brother's answer. This made me laugh and compose myself.

But now, angry at myself, I decide we are riding farther (Exhibit B of RBR Brilliance) I powered down ALL of the nutrition I brought on this ride, three Cliff Shot blocks (umm...yeah Exhibit C of RBR Brilliance)) , and we headed out to do thirty miles. Still lost, we finally figured out where we were going and at what would be the turn around for about a 32 mile ride, Run Buddy says, "Lets keep going for an even 35"

Sure. I am not going to be the one that pussed out, so we keep going. (Exhibit D of RBR Brilliance)

After getting lost AGAIN, we turn around, and 40 miles later we are home. By this time we have both bonked due to piss poor nutrition, are barely able to stay upright on our bikes, and our communication has been reduced to grunts and snotty looks at each other.

This has lead to a great debate in my head. A debate on which I would appreciate the thoughtful reader's opinion (yes, that means you).

Do I:

1. Continue this charade. Train my heart out knowing that the likelihood of me being able to complete Vineman at the end of July is about the same as the likelihood that I will be selected as the next spokes model for Levi's skinny jeans and let whatever will be, be on July 31st (and can I add a hearty "Fuck you" to whatever soulless asshole brought the little slice of hell called "skinny jeans" back in fashion? They look good on approximately 0.00076% of the population and that number drops dramatically if you exclude people under the age of 14)

I did not make this image, but I could have. This is the oh-so-flattering ice cream cone effect of skinny jeans.

2. Drop back to Barb's Race 1/2 Iron for July 31st and register for Redman Iron distance on September 25th.

3. Forget this whole stupid pipe dream, sell my bike to go buy more donuts, and take up needlepoint as my new hobby.

Ok, I guess that is not really an option, but this is a funny needlepoint. For more like this, go here www.subversivecrossstitch.com. Hysterical.


Generation X (Slomohusky) said...

however awesome option number 3 sounds, go with number 2 at least. brilliant!

SWTrigal said...

I say #1 or #2.
#3 may make you depressed!

Regina said...

I'm with you on the skinny jean, that person should be shot. I look like that ice cream cone. but a little lumpier.

Go with 1 or 2, although I secretly want to do #3.

Drs. Cynthia and David said...

Hey, you've got guts and motivation (and a sense of humor- important!). That's more than most people can say!

For your weight loss/body composition issues, take a look at http://www.endurancecorner.com/library/nutrition/sports_nutrition_part1 and http://chuckiev.blogspot.com/2008/01/nutrition-notes_08.html

And for your goals question, see http://www.endurancecorner.com/What_does_it_take_finish

He has some practical advice on what level of fitness you need to be at.

Good luck with training. I'm sure you'll improve rapidly.


Pam @ herbieontherun.com said...

I'm a fan of option #2.

Alisa said...

Selfishly I'd like you to do option #2 b/c then we'd be racing together...HOWEVER, I think deep down you know you'd be disappointed in yourself if you didn't try for #1. Go for it and whatever happens happens.

ShirleyPerly said...

Well, I think it's too early to be thinking about anything but #1. You still have nearly 5 months of training left and a LOT can change in that time. Expect the first few weeks of training to be kinda rough, the first few days really rough if you're thinking you can just jump back into things as if you'd never stopped training. Give yourself the chance to succeed. If you still feel the same way after your May half iron, do option 2. Just my 2 cents.

Lindsay said...

i hear ya on the skinny jeans. i may not be a big ice cream cone myself, but i am not within the 0.00076% nor am i under 14 years of age.

has all your training since the surg been so 'brilliant' or disheartening? maybe you just need a rough week or two to get back in the groove and then your feelings will change? i guess i'm of the same opinion as shirley HOWEVER i have 0 (if not negative) triathlon experience so i don't know how valuable my opinion is.

i can always get on board with #3, though i'd obviously sub donuts for m&m's, maybe cake. ;)

Christi said...

Go with #1! I believe that you have the willpower and humor to continue through the hard times!

Diana said...

I bought a pair of those skinny jeans for my cat-she loves 'em!
I'd go with #2 option.
I love the sense of humor you throw out there, but.
When I'm trying to get a point across I use humor to cover up the hard, seriousness that I really am trying to get across, so if you're the same as I...
really look into your eyes, down to your heart and see what's there. I sense that you could do this IM. July is coming fast-so a plan of action must be written and followed. You have lots of things that will stir you away from training (IE: your hubby's radiation and treatments), it will definitely be tough. I don't know if I would have it in me-I'd feel like curling up on the couch in the fetal position with doughnuts too!
I'd sure hate to see you not finish this, that would be absolutely detrimental to the soul no matter how much humor you use to cover it up!
I can't wait to read what your decision is....best of luck!

Kim said...

#1 or #2. I'm a newbie runner so please excuse my lack of being in the know, but can you train for both and decide a bit later if you feel good enough for option #1?

Kris said...

For me, it would be #2. You have a lot going on with hubby's treatment, and it may take a bigger toll on you than you expect. There's nothing wrong with dialing back to the HIM and revisit the IM later.

Formulaic said...

Sister, it is still 5 months out.

It's kind of early to be dropping a number 2 bomb! ;)

You just did 40 miles! 40 miles on untrained legs and pisspoor nutrition.

40 miles is big! Sure you were exhausted, but you just did 40 miles, without planning! WITH NO FUCKING CLUE what you were doing you did 40 MILES!

That is awesome!

Unknown said...

Option 1 or Option 2. Whichever you choose, do it with your head held high.

I'm with you on skinny jeans. They look good on my 16yr old daughter who is 5'8" and weighs 100 lbs when wet. And that's about it.

I don't think I could fit one leg in those jeans if you opened the seam and sewed the two legs into one...

skoshi said...

I drop in now and then and just getting caught up. Wow. Thank goodness for the dentist. This is my 2 cents. If you want to do an ironman length event, you want to do it well. This doesn't mean going fast, it just means putting in the time and miles and knowing you have a sound foundation. Otherwise, you just beat yourself up. To do this requires commitment and self-attention on your part--and it sounds like you might want to have time for someone else right now.
Going for the Half distance will allow you to work towards an achievable goal, keep doing something you love (I'm guessing, since you've been doing it for 5 years) while still having the time and energy to spend with your husband (whom I know you love even more). Getting to the point where you can "race" a half distance is pretty cool (i.e. I can race a half marathon, but not a full) and there is nothing "dialing back" about racing a half ironman Besides, Barb's race raises money for cancer.

Southbaygirl said...

hmmm donuts!!!! They are so yummy when you eat them but then you feel so yucky after eating them!!!!

Formulaic said...

OK. After some serious thought, I think that you should do what you want to do.

In my heart I "KNOW" that you can do Vineman. You rode 40 miles at the drop of a hat, but it is going to be hard.

Ironman is a bitch and requires all your free time. ALL OF IT!

You have a hubby to take care of and while he may say to go out there and do it, I think that he may just be afraid that you will abandon your IM hopes forever.

You have already proven that you wont' just be opting for Barbs. You could have just said that you are done but you didn't and you still chose to race. Which a true testament to your will and desire to race.

In the end, I think you know what you are going to do. Have a heart to heart with that hubby of yours and your heart and I'll support you no matter what option you choose.

BTW: If you go with option 3, can I get an afghan?

Big Daddy Diesel said...

Go with #2, why not, we only live once, might was well do it while doing something we like. Do option 3 after we are dead

Sparky14 said...

Hi there,

Just thought I'd drop by (remember me from EP, probably not ... perhaps I'm just a trainee stalker, LOL), and geez I wasn't expecting to see what is going on in your life, going on ...

And yes, that piccie of your DH is hot, hot, hot :)

I personally think you should go for #2, but give yourself a couple of weeks of getting back into it before making any decision.

Good luck hun :)

S. Baboo said...

Hey girl, I've been very busy sucking as a creepy blog friend but I'm glad I finally surfed in again (BTW Googleing Run Bitch Run brings up a horrible video---Ack!)

I really believe you should go for option #2. I've done Vineman, Redman and IMCDA so I know what you have faced and what you will face. In my humble opinion I believe that you deserve an IM finish. You worked very hard preparing for IMCDA and it didn't work out. Vineman is, overall, a harder course with a shorter time limit.

I am totally not saying that you can't do it; what I am saying is that you have to focus on taking good care of yourself along the way, show compassion AND perserverence at the same time.

The OKC Redman has the potential to be kind of hot and humid and possibly windy but it is a totally awesome race. It was my first IM distance race. The year I did it the last place person came in at 19:20 if I remember correctly. The poor guy took like two or three wrong turns on the run (I have no F'ing idea how he managed that!) and so he ended up running like 35 miles. Anway, after the cutoff the RD had all the aid stations pack up and leave despite the fact that they were begging him to let them stay and support the last runner. Then the RD personally loaded up a golf cart with food and water and followed the guy around the course until he finished. It was a totally awesome and selfless act. He really loves his athletes.

Like I said, you DESERVE this finish (not to mention you should cut yourself some slack and allow yourself some more emotional energy to focus on hubby).

Besides (the selfish disclosure) the GeekGrl and I will be at the OKC Redman this year! (we were registered for last year but our financial situation fell apart and the RD let us move our registration to this year).

aka Moogy said...

The only running that jean mutant does is to the porcelain bus to toss the carrot that she just ate. Go for #2 and enjoy those donuts ya eat.

Unknown said...

Hilarious post. I do not know you, but I now love you. And if it matters at all, my vote is for option B.