Memphis in May


6th Overall / 2nd amateur


and who said mempis was hot in May? race morning started with me shivering in my bed at 5am....

I went into this race with an unusual calmness - perhaps because it wasnt one of my "A" races this year, so I didn't know what to expect since I wasn't really rested. I showed up the the race about a half-hour later than usual, so transition was buzzing already, and there were people everywhere. I mozied over to my rack, which i found out were not marked individually, so since i turned out late, i found a spot about half-way down the aisle....
Ryan and I got all set up and headed for the start. He started long before me since this race had a time trial start and his number was low -181....and mine was 658. so i parked it on the edge of the lake to watch the pros go off, then all the age groupers before me. being a swim coach - i was facinated with all the different strokes and methods entering the water i saw -- the good swimmers would run and dive in easing into their strokes quickly and effortlessly. then, the not-so-good swimmers would come along and they were so timid not wanting to put their faces in right away... getting swum over almost immediately (since the race wasn't seeded based on swim time). I can honestly say that is one thing I have never had to face, since I have a strong swimming background and can hold my own - and for that, I thank God! I mean, for the first couple of years I was afraid of the open water and faced the usual anxiety many triathletes feel, but I knew it was all mental. I knew I could swim. But for those just learnig how to swim - wow. I admire them.
so - back to the race. the swim went off without a hitch. since the race wasnt seeded, and everyone went off 3 seconds apart, there were people of different speeds everywhere for the entire swim. Im not sure I liked it a whole lot, but i had a decent time overall, so i guess i can't complain. I had a fast transition wiggling out of my wetsuit in record time andwas off on the bike in a jiffy. now, as far as i knew going in, Memphis was hilly......but the race website said the bike course was flat. well, let me tell ya....to a girl from Louisiana, that bike was not flat! fortunately, i had been training in the hills latley, so i was ready, and proceded to pass just about everyone in sight. I knew i was having a great bike, but at the same time i was having some abdominal cramps that wouldn't subside, and i was concerned about going out on the run.
I came into transition being the first bike back on the rack, so i knew i was out front going into the run. but sure enough, those cramps were there, and got really intense about 1/4 mile in. it was so bad, i was running so slowly holding my side hoping to make it go away. no luck. i was not a very happy camper, and blurted out a few words the way only i could do, and had to stop and walk a bit to let it subside. this went on for about 15 minutes, then somehow the cramp got a little better to the point where i could run hard without being overwhelmed by my side. Then, I ran like the wind(well, like the wind in my speed!), knowing those girls behind me were trying to run me down....but no one caught me.
I made it to the finish in good time - a PR ( turns out the bike course is a mile short, so that can't actually count as a PR) and ended up 2nd amateur. Im happy with the way it turned out - although i would have liked to win. I guess sometimes life throws you a twist, or a cramp, and that's just the way it goes. adjust, and move on. I'll take it.



after coaching swim practice this morning, i planned to hit the road and head up to one of my favorite training spots for a long brick in the hills. but when i got home, i realized my bike was still in the shop since saturday's ride, and they didn't open till 9 - so i would have to wait a couple of hours before i got started. well, no big deal, right? - so i sat down, ate a big bowl of cheese grits and eggs, and packed the coolers i would bring with me full of ice, water, and gatorade- one to drop for the run, the other to keep in the car to be sure my water stayed cold. after waiting around for a while, i was losing my patience, so i went up to the shop a little early only to keep waiting until they got there. i guess i hoped someone would be there early - but to no avail....
so i finally got started on my bike at 10:30 am, just in time to feel the heat coming on. I know it will be much hotter this year than it is now, but there is something about that first hot day of the year looming. oh, and the humidity. i forgot to mention the humidity. yeah. that would be 92%.

well, anyway....I had a great bike finding my way around Bush keeping the 18-wheelers and angry motorists to a minimum. i could tell it was starting to seriously heat up since all my ice melted by mile 10 and i would be drinking warm water and gatorade for the rest of the ride. ummm, yummy. fortunately, the wind seemed to pick up over the last few miles of the ride and it seemed to cool me off a bit, but there is that side effect of wind - and that would be going slow.....or maybe i just thought it was wind?....it was probably the motor. When i finally got to the car and got off the bike, it didn't seem like there was any wind at all, so i guess my legs are just showing signs of fatigue from the miles i have been putting in. But there was no time for whining..... it was time for the run. my FAVORITE! No, really. The better i get at it, and the more miles i put in, the more i like it. (did I just say that?) If you asked me 5 years ago if I thought i would ever like the run - id probably wince, snicker, make a face, and say "are you f-*!#*!-n CRAZY?"

[[sidebar....you see, the run use to be my nemesis. I hated it with a passion, and because i hated it, I let it limit me. i thought....If I hate the run, it will surely hate me back. and that's no good! and it was all in my mind. Donnie used to call it my "growth area", and so it was. i began to change the way i thought about it. I had A LOT of room to grow on the run, and every year, i have grown... and continue to do so. now, mind you, it has taken a lot of time and patience....But over the years, i have kept my focus on the long term....gradually adding on the miles, working on my stride, adding speed and tempo workouts, and most importantly to a wanna-be runner - losing weight. Yeah, the weight loss comes hand in hand with all the other stuff, but constantly pushing past the negative and staying positive throughout is how you get there. negative thoughts will weaken the mind. they will help you fail if you let them take over. only you can change the way you think...a quote from donnie stays with me.....


OK, ok.... back to my brick....so i got started on the run at about 12:30pm, and let me tell you --the heat was ON! within the first mile, i noticed the sun directly overhead and there wasn't a shade tree in sight. just the heat monkey's coming off the pavement for miles up and down the hills. the first 2 miles felt great, but i was sweating buckets. my cooler was hidden in the trees at mile 2, and from there i would do loops ending up at the cooler for water and gatorade. by 5 miles in, i was putting the ice in my bra to stay cool. there were times along the run where i thought i could just walk for a little while, but every time i stopped running, it just got sooo much hotter. so i just kept running sometimes from one side of the road to the other for that little bit of shade from the pine trees peering onto the road... the day was cruel. it would turn out to be not only a hard mileage day - but also a complete mental training day, as most would quit because it was too hot - and i knew that, but i was determined to focus on the good --like... i get to do this, right? i mean, its monday mid-day, and i'm out running. where is everyone else i know? i'm there to get it done no matter what and take on what the day had in store for me because i want to keep growing. i want to get better. i want to be faster. then...up another hill and around the corner...right around mile 6 to 7... could it be???....it was about 50 yards of shaded road. so, i stopped for a moment to take in the shade - just to be out of the sun and knowing it would be hot anyway- but then, from out of no where came this heavenly gust of wind that must have lasted 15 seconds, then another one. it was unbelievable. like someone turned on the a/c for a minute. my saving grace - like my reward for making it this far. i was refreshed, and now all i had to do was run back to the car and i was done. piece of cake.

I can't explain the wind under those trees, because it didn't last long, i guess it was just one of those things. i know it sounds corny....but Id like to think donnie had a part in -- rewarding me for passing the test. if i didn't go the whole way, and turn that corner to add that extra 1/2 mile, (which at that point could have been easily skipped) i would never have even seen the shade. often, especially on those solo days, he is with me - keeping me going - he was so motivating (and still is)- and, in part, it was because he believed in me that i now believe in myself. he drew out something inside of me that was buried so deep that even i doubted it was there. but it was there, and he saw it. and now I know it's there. today, i can still feel his hand on my back, gently pushing me up the hill....


Crawfishman Triathlon

1st overall female
6th overall


Another fast day - this time at home in LOUISIANA! Once again, Crawfishman has put on the best race around- with a great venue, fast slightly hilly race course, great post race grub, and,of course, the best coldest beer and frozen margarita's ever!
the race:
there was a lot of fog on the swim and the water was a chilly 80 degrees (ok, i know, 80 isn't cold to you, but it's cold to me!) -so it was the first non-wetsuit swim of the year. the fog was so thick, i could only see 4 of the 8 buoy's from the start and jus ta couple of kayaks. it was like swimming into the great unknown wondering where you would end up - but sure enough, all 8 buoy's were there with lots of kayakers and race support out there to keep us on course.
it was a great swim - i just kept the other pink caps around me in sight and moved right along - giving my friend kenny a double-take and a smile on the kayak. i wasn't expecting to see him out there on a boat!...i figured he'd be racing! i think i was the first girl out of the water....
onto the bike.....the bike was fast and had plenty of rolling hills. i proceded to pass many of the guys who started before me - only one guy passed me on the bike, that would be " big jim " - and i knew i could hang on if i pushed it (staying 3 bike lenghts back, of course!) so....i did..... and i ended up having a great bike. it went by in a jiffy...and onto the run....
i had another fast transition, and ran out for the run feeling good. that is, until the first hill. i have yet to hun hils this year, so i struggled on the up's. i couldn't wait for the downhills! i made it through though, with w 6:36/mile average, so i'll take it. i definately need some more hills before Memphis in May!!

I was really happy with today's outcome, especially since my mileage has picked up. i figured i would be tired, which i was, but i still had some speed under my belt. my big races are still to come, and i hope to keep the ball rolling......keepin' on keepin' on....c


st anthony's triathlon

5th place elite amateur

wow! what a day! I did it last year and i was hoping to do better this year, but little did I know that I would PR by over 10 minutes!

I have so much to say about this weekend, i don't know where to start.....hmmm.... everything was great!!! the weather, the water, the wind, the expo, the people,....i just love everything about st anthony's- they put on a top-notch event.....oh, and finally, after a few weeks of me not feeling so good, i was beginning to feel a lot better.

the race:
The morining started off a little hairy, with my stomach not feeling right at all and many trips to the lovley port-o-podies, but i managed to make it to the starting line in the nick of time for my early wave start. this year i was in the elite amateur wave which left just after the pro's, instead of my usual age group which would be leaving over an hour and a half later. the water was 77 degrees and relatively calm which made for a great (and uneventful) wetsuit swim.

my transition seemed to go well, and I was onto the bike in a jiffy and was ready to put it down. however....it seems there were a few other girls with the same thing in mind, and they were tough to shake. in the first stretch of the bike, there are a lot of cobblestones, and i think all the bumps moved my computer magnet around - and voila - it wasnt working. so from the beginning, i would have no idea what my pace would be, so i would just have to go on feel. this has happened once before, and i had a great bike time - so i had that thought in the back of my head - staying positive - 'ill just have to go the fastest i can...'. well, i did. I tried to break away several times, but the others just held on. so, i just went, trying to push the pace and i felt fast the whole way. I ran into some trouble on the bike with some of the elite guys from the wave before raising havoc, blocking, passing on the right, and trying to cut me off --and all of the others girls around me (i found this out at the end).... one guy in particular kept getting passed, then wouldn't drop back, then he would pass and try to clip my wheel. it was surley one of the most aggressive bike courses I have ever ridden, and perhaps thats why the times were so smokin' fast. we were all tryng to get away from each other, but couldn't. plus, there are so many turns, it was hard to pull away over a long stretch. so....needless to say, there were a few of us who came into transition together off the bike - i know this, beacuse i saw them run by me in the beginning of the run! HA!

the run started of a little rough - i was still hurting from the last few miles on the bike trying to shake the others. the top 5 elite amateur women came out of transition pretty much all together and settled into their respective paces quickly- leaving me trailing behind. i knew i would have to hold on if i wanted to be in the mix in the end, so i kept the last one in my sights for the remainder of the run. i tried to catch her at mile 4, but she saw me too, it was all i had to hang on. the run course was beautiful as usual, and there was a great deal of shade and a nice breeze at times.

i was stunned at the finish line when i saw my time was 2:06. i think it has to do alot with being surrounded by others at the same level with the same goals. the addition of the elite amateur wave was as close to racing pro as ever. just a taste of the fast pace and i absolutely loved it from start to finish. yeah, i could have done without those guys on the bike course, but all in all, i loved how it felt to chase and be chased. what a day!
Did i mention i qualified for Worlds in 2008?