Day 8

same ol' same ol'up here....woke up and went for an early run and a swim at the club -then to an open water swim in the afternoon/early evening. I'm trying to get some quality time in the wetsuit up here since all the water back home is soooo HOT! My day goes by so quickly with all the trainng and back and forth and eating - i can understand why i get to buried with trying to do it all back home....

Day 9

aahhh....a day off. slept late this morning. I am getting into the taper time now, so im taking advantage of all the rest i can get. I have officially taken over salty's recliner full time and spent the day watching Law and Order re-runs and napping. It was a tough day!


RIST Canyon


First time for everything. Today, we climbed Rist Canyon. Seems like no big deal when I write it, but it was incredible - hard and exhilerating all at the same time. there were times along the way when i wondered if i could do the entire climb without stopping - either voluntarily, or just fall over on my bike because i couldn't pedal anymore. The morning started out cool as I made Theresa get up early so we could get a good start on the day and be done before noon. The 59 mile route would take about 3.5 -4 hours depending on how many times we stopped along the way. I planned not to stop at all, but I had no idea what I was getting myself into - so I was prepared for whatever the day had in store. Steve, a friend of Theresa's, joined us for the ride. I met him the other night at a dinner their training group had over at his house. So we took off at about 6:15 am with our arm warmers on and headed for the canyon. A good 45 minutes into the ride, the arm warmers came off and the climb began - 13 miles straight up. The first 6 miles or so were old news to me since I rode them twice yesterday as part of my training. I needed to do a couple of solid 30 minute plus climbs, and the only place to do that that I knew of was Rist. So yesterday, I rode out here and rode up and down a couple of times and became familiar with what I was to expect for part of today. The rumor was that the climb gets steeper as you go, and the top is the steepest. And well, that rumor proved true. after 30 minutes of climbing, it kept on. There were some points when I would go from a cadence of 70 to 50 (remember, no triple granny gear here - tri bike and Q-rings, baby) and my speed would drop from a steady 9.5mph to 6.5mph - then 5.9mph then 5.6mph.... then who know how slow and how low my cadence went because i was just trying to stay upright at that point and not pass out since-i-can't-breathe-and-is-this-hill-ever-gonna-end....and to my surprise (now really, if you ride your bike, imagine this), i felt a sense of relief when i felt the hill give a little and was able to recover a bit - at 6.6mph and a cadence of 60. HA! I never in a million years expected to find relief at 6.6mph uphill, but I did. then the climb eased a little back to the usual 8-10 mph, and then it did that all over again....After 45 minutes or so, it got even steeper if you can believe it. I had no idea how much further this climb would be, and if i would make it all the way. Surely this thing had to be do-able I kept telling myself. People ride it all the time, right? But then again, altitude and thin air for this below-sea-level-creature.... I didnt know if I would pass out first! then we hit the swithbacks and behold! I was at the top! At first, I thought it was just a little patch of flat road before we got to go up again - then I saw the HUGE downhill into the valley and I said "Is that it?" I thought - "is that all you got?" I thought to myself ....hehe...I got a good chuckle out of that. Yeah, that was enough. We waited for Theresa to come along then took a little break and some pictures. Now, it was downhill time - the arm warmers went back on and away we went. i hit my breaks immediately as the hill was HUGE and we were flyin'. I (being the scaredy cat that i am) rode my breaks the entire way not going over 47 mph...! The air was cool and crisp on the way down and I had goosebumps for the first 20 minutes until we began to get back into some rollers then climb back out of the canyon. At this point, my legs were pooped, and the last thing I wanted to do was climb again, but these hills were a breeze compared to the big climb. Piece of cake. We made it home in just under 4 hours...what a great ride - puts red bluff to shame.




Ahhhh, Monday, my day off. Today I slept in and enjoyed the morning laying around watching TV. Then, after lunch, Salty and Theresa (and Bucky and Casey) took me into the Rocky mountains for some sightseeing. We drove the long scenic way from Fort Collins to Estes where we ate a late lunch, then into Rocky Mountain National Park to take in the beautiful views and high altitudes! Not a bad way to spend a day off....!
I've been in the Rocky Mountains before when I was in Utah a few times in my life, but it's easily forgotten just how gorgeous God's earth can be. Come Wednesday, I'll be climbing some of these mountains.....can't wait.


Back to It

Day 3

Back to the same ol same ol - Time for 2 hard training days back to back. I was so looking forward to the training in the altitude (we're at 5200 ft here at the house), but a little aprehensive of how my body would respond to it over two hard days riding, running, and swimming up here. Now remember - I'm from Louisisna. Part of my usual week involves being in the negatives when it comes to altitude....

Saturday Morning started with a long run, followed by a swim and another quick pm run. It went great. I was actually cool, and I barely broke a sweat after an hour into my first run! and the PM run - done at 4pm, in the "heat" of the day - it was 91 degrees - wasn't bad either. I did break a little sweat, and it was hot, but not that drenching i'm gonna pass-out feeling! Man, people up here got it good - I can see why lifestyles here are so active - because it's easy to be outside in this climate! Back home, it's so hot and humid, that if you don't like to sweat, you're out of luck. It's much more comfortable inside in the a/c! personally, I think it's much more difficult to do tri training in the "muggies" - takes more of a physical toll and mental toughness day in and day out...but that's just me!


today was the day we would venture into the foothills for my first day of Lubbock-like climbing (that would be Lubbock, TX - where my race is on June 29th). After a day of running and swimming and feeling just fine, I figured i would be ok as far as altitude was concerned. We had to go early since we had a lot of other stuff planned so we were off headed towards the rocky mountains at 6am with arm warmers on (in JUNE!). What an awesome ride. The first bit was downhill it seemed, but once we made it to the Horsetooth Resevoir, it was mostly up. gradulally and pretty easy at first, but about an hour in, we hit the big climbs that had me thanking myself for all those trips to Red Bluff I made over the past month! They were hard, yes, but do-able. 6mph was the slowest I got, with everything i had to keep my pedals moving at all to keep from falling over, and that was for quite a while. I wondered wether I would make it to the top at all or pass out first...! whatever happens happens, i thought....! It was just awesome - and the views were breathtaking (i will post pictures soon).
After the ride, I headed out for another quick run, then a nap and another swim - my days are sometimes so consumed with training they just blow by.



Well, I made it to Fort Collins without a hitch - and what a spectacular view once you leave the flat barren lands of Texas and cross into Colorado! I've never been here before, so I'm really looking forward to it. It was a great. uneventful drive that was much easier than I expected. I arrived at Salty and Theresa's Home (my gracious Host's!) at around 2pm to unpack and unwind and then T & I were off to ride somewhere, although it wasn't on my schedule to do. I just couldnt resist since I'd been kooked up in the car for 20 hours. I rode around - up and down some big hills (ones we have to drive an hour to find to back home) and was surprised to find that I felf so good and strong - and no big breathing issues - I was a little afraid the altitude might be hard on me...a little breathless, but it was awesome!


My Trip to Colorado

OK, I know, it's been a while...the story of my life lately it seems! The past 6 weeks at home have been absolutely crazy, but I'm on a solo road trip now, so I have all the time in the world to think, train, sleep, and write.
Early this morning I left for my trip to Fort Collins, Colorado for a 2-week training stint leading up to BSLT 70.3 on the 29th of this month. Without going into it all right now, I have had a bit of trouble getting going this year, but I'm starting to feel on track again- not quite 100%, but close. I have been looking forward to getting away - out of my regular everyday life - to think and focus on what lies ahead. I'll get into all that's been going on since April in the next few days, as i plan to write every day and document my trip and keep everyone tuned in.
After driving over 14 hours, and only one real incident of getting lost (I have no idea how I made it thru Dallas OK), I'm staying in the town of Dalhart, TX tonite. I'll be off in the morning after a little run...nite