Sunday, September 20, 2009

A Childhood Keepsake

A few month ago I got a message via facebook from one of my elementary school teachers, Mrs Reeves. She wanted to know if I had a copy of a book I wrote for the "Writer's Conference," and if not, she wanted to send it to me.

At first I had no idea what she was talking about. I wish I was on of those people who remembers all the wonderful little details of their childhood, but I'm not. I know bits and pieces, and things I did and participated in. I know I was a good student, very involved in everything (particularly when I was very young) and as far as I knew - well liked by my teachers. But, what struck me the most was the fact what Mrs. R. was referring to was a writing achievement, vs math. I don't remember ever being much of a writer, but always the brainy math nerd.

Of course I replied that I would LOVE to receive the book, and sent her my address. Right before we left for the summer I received the book in the mail, along with a letter from my former teacher.

"Krista - I have enjoyed having this book for 21 years! I have shown it to college students as a terrific example of children's writing and publishing.
But now that I have "found" you, I want you to enjoy it as a memory of your childhood. I loved having you as a student!

I have to admit I was pretty taken back. That a teach would hold on to such a thing for so long, then go out of her way to share it with me so many years later. I'm sure I'm not the only student she has keepsakes of, and I hope they all get a chance to reunite with something like this as well.

With that I present you my very first, and only published "book"....

Fair to say, it's prolly a good thing I didn't try to become an artist....just sayin.

Hard to read - I've rewritten...

One bright and sunny day, a little girl named Marry was wondering if she could go on a picnic in a field.
Marry has long, wavy, blond hair. She has a beautiful face. She's eight years old. Marry is a kind person. She loves to give and share anything and everything. (She would really love to give her freckles away.)
Marry went into the dining room to ask her mother if she could go on a picnic. Her mother asked where she was going to have her picnic. Marry told her mother that she was going to go to the field across the street. So her mother said yes.
When Marry got her lunch packed, got her blanket and doll, she ran across the street into the field. She laid her blanket down, and put all her stuff on it.
When Marry was just about to take a bite of her tuna sandwich, she heard a squeaking, crying kind of sound. She......(continued on next page)

followed the sound of the voice.
When Marry could hear the sound perfectly, she looked down in some weeds, and saw a little furry animal. She knelt down and picked it up. It was a little puppy.
The little puppy had a light brown and white colored fur. It was a real cute puppy. Marry had seen puppies like this, but they were too expensive to get.
After Marry was done cuddling the puppy, she ran to her stuff with the puppy in her arms. She put her stuff in her bag. She put her bag on her shoulder, then ran across the street.
When Marry got in her house, she put her bag on the couch and ran into the dining room to her mother. Marry showed her mother the puppy.
After Marry's mother got done asking her where she found it, and said yes about keeping it, she said that they would have......(continued on next page)

to put an ad in the paper. Marry told her mother she knew. She also said that she knew if someone claimed the puppy, she would not be mad.
After two weeks, no one claimed the puppy. Marry's mother decided Marry could keep the puppy, but it would be her responsibility. Marry agreed with her mother.
When Marry and her mother were done talking, Marry kissed her mom then ran and got her puppy. She went straight up the stairs to her room. She was thinking and thinking for a name, then finally decided to call it Cuddles.
Marry and Cuddles had a lot of fun together. They went in the fields and ran around. They played with socks, slept together, and that's how their day went.
The End

My favorite part about the book, is I can tell it came from ME. The freckles comments, the name of the dog "Cuddles" is also the name of a Teddy Bear that I still, to this day have, and the "blanket" that Marry used for her picnic to put all of her stuff on.... I had this PINK (yes momo, pink) plaid blanket (DD) that I brought EVERYWHERE with me.... I laugh just thinking about it now.
But, most of all I think about how I was even then, The DogMom.... Some things never do change...
Thank you Mrs. Reeves, for bringing this wonderful memory back to life!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Swimming, like riding a bike.

Look at this. Two posts, back to back. Is this a comeback? Nah, I am just getting back into the routine of being home. Not doing tri-training where a couple workouts a day are required, and it's HOT so I'm up EARLY to get the workout out of the way. Work is slowly picking up (good), but still not keeping me totally busy these days.

So what happens with that? More time to think. And ramble.

I think I mentioned several times how, ugh, much we didn't exactly train over the summer. Yah, sure we worked out, and the first 4-5 weeks had a few races in there, but trust me we learned the hard way. You can't wing it if you still want to perform well. Which really does suck considering we were in GREAT shape before we left here. But, did you know that when you head out on all of your bike rides a leetle hung over AND end up cutting them ALL short, you don't maintain or gain ANY fitness. It's true. Trust me, no need to try it out yourself.

So, the other thing we lacked on was swimming. In fact, in all of August I swam a total of 8500 yards. Half of that came from 2 races. A typical week for me is about 8500 yards. Sure for some people that is still a lot, but when you actually enjoy it, and love the not impact it has on your joints, it's nothing to brag about.

Excuses? Well, I didn't really need an excuse. No triathlon on the schedule, why swim? For me, I love to swim. I love what it does for my arms and my back and recently learned how much it actually does for my core (or lack there of when not swimming) and belly. I love how it makes me tired, and helps me sleep. I love how I don't notice how much I'm wheezing when I'm in the water. I love how my legs feel after a nice workout, no impact, just somehow always better.

So why the heck did I stop? Well, for one I didn't know about pools where we were. But, the biggest reason is I was not comfortable swimming alone. The gorgeous lake only a couple minute walk from where I was, but being out there in the open water without someone by me made me nervous. If you know Shane, you know that getting him to swim, when there is no reason to swim, well, it's like getting me to eat something I don't like. Not Happenin...

As much as I was dreading coming back to the heat, I was so looking forward to getting back to masters. Something about being with the group, and having such a wonderful swim coach giving you workouts. Not knowing what's up next, or how long the intervals will be or how fast you should be doing them. Keeping on the toes of the person in front of you, or on good days leading them. Something about all those things I love.

Now, if ONLY I were a swimmer when I was a kid (playing around like a fish all summer long, not include), a real swimmer...

Yesterday day marked my return to swimming. 11 weeks since I had seen the black line. 11 weeks (minus races) since I had swam over 1500meters or swam sans wetsuit. I came back ready to go in a slightly slower lane than normal, ready to cut the workout short and ready to not remember how to do a flipturn.

I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised. After being TOLD which lane to go into (no change there!) I started off on the warm up the last of 3 in my lane to go, after the first 100 moved up to second.

6x100, every 4th length double or tripple overswitch drill :10 rest.

I didn't look at my watch for these sets, but was surprised at how good it felt, and yes I remembered how to flip turn.

Main set = take your tempo trainer and put it where you would only be able to sustain the turnover for 100, MAX 150, based on current workouts.

Me to coach, "Ugh, I haven't been using this, let alone swimming workouts?"

Coach, "Ok, .85"

Me, "OK!" Yeah, I love when I don't have to do long slow strokes!

6x50 at your tempo trainer rate :15 fast. I took off in second position. "Holy cow, open water swimming must make my arms go slower, this is FAST. Like a propeller. Oh shit, Sorry James - those are your toes!"

Split - :41 "Shit, I should prolly slow this down, changed to .87, much better - Split :43, no toe grabbing this time."

Next up 300, add .15 to your tempo trainer. Take 1min rest and repeat the 6x50's fast. "Agh, this is nice and SLOW... great."

Of course within 3 laps I already lost track of my lap count & had to use my watch & math skills to figure out how much left. My triceps were burning. I added up the total distance.

WTF - ONLY 1200. You have GOT to be kidding me.

I kept telling myself to make it to 2000, that that was a great starting point & I could do that in my sleep. Finish the second 300 and cooldown, that's all I had to do.

But, of course not - Anne gave me the rest of the workout, 100 easy, 5x100:10rest level 2-3, and a cooldown. I knew I had it in the bag.

My arms burned, my abs felt it all, but you know what? In the end I felt fantastic. Fresh, tired, sore and loved every minute of it. 2500yards in the bag. Sanity, sleep & weightless exercise, PRICELESS.

For some people they can get on a bike and break out 3 hours after 6months off. Some people can run an hour on a whim. Not me. But put me in a pool, and I can get back & forth several times. Might be slower, but I will make it. There and back, There and back.

Just like riding a bike, you just remember.

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Marathon

I'm pretty sure I've written on here more than once about how I will never do a stand alone marathon again. Or alluded to that anyway. Stupid IT bands, Stupid injuries = stupid painful marathon.

And then, the next thing you know I have a wild hair up the you know what, a $10 off early registration coupon = Krista signed up for a FULL marathon.

Never say Never. My new motto.

Tucson Marathon, Dec 13th 2009.

OH Shit. What have I done?

It may have been the 10 week 'bender' I was on while "summering in CDA", as I've been told we were doing... That may have been the icing on the cake. More happy hours than workouts over the course of the summer. More lbs gained than lost. A few jiggles that weren't there when I started. Yah, something like that.

Not ready to commit to an ironman. Not much time on the bike. Certainly no swimming. And Running in the fall and winter in Arizona, heavenly. A winter, downhill course in Tucson, even better.

So, here I am week 4 of a 16 week training plan that I borrowed and I'm still feeling good. Week one was catch up. 3 days of running check. Week 2 first hill repeat workout EVER check. Week 3 second hill repeat workout in UTAH (survived, stopped on the 5th repeat to dry-heave, yup fun times) plus first long run back in the heat.

OMG - we came back TOO early. No really, we did. Weeks of running in 50-60degree weather then a 2 hour run in 80degrees plus 50% humidity, not so much fun. My body was in full on shock. I made it through the run, thanks to a great new running buddy (thanks Karen!), pace ok, HR a leetle high, IT band GREAT. However the rest of the day my stomach was a MESS.

Now we are on week 4 = rest week. In all the training plans I have ever done I've never had a full on recovery week. EVER. I imagine my build weeks weren't as tough as they are going to be with the plan I'm following, but I'm more interested in seeing how my body, particularly my IT band holds up including these rest weeks every 4th week. TBD.

So, the official plan is to stick to my 3 day per week running, and add 2 days of running and cycling for the cross-training. Fingers are crossed, Foam roll is ready, frozen peas purchased and in the freezer and ART guy on speed dial.

As much as I am terrified, I'm also excited. This is something I wasn't sure, and still am not, I'd ever be able to do again. I'm not getting my hopes up YET, and if anything starts to hurt too bad, or injury starts creeping up I will NOT hesitate to back down to the half marathon.

Goals? Finish with a PR (not that hard to accomplish with my past marathon times), pain free and happy!!!

And, still in the back of my head a repeat of El Tour De Tucson 3 weeks before the marathon. Doable? Desirable on my current bike???? Hmm - lots to think about!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Home Sweet (melting) Home

We finally made it home last night. Barely. About 3 hours away neither of us had any idea where the house key was. We searched all the bags, purse (murse) and then moved on to plan B. Who has a key to our house?

Thankfully, and without too much drama, we were able to pick up a spare on the way home, grab some takeout and were point to point Supa's to LaPan Casa in 10:20mins (including extra stops)! Pheww... much betta than the 11.5hrs from 9mile to Salt Lake City on Tuesday.

I'm not ready to recap the last few weeks yet, but I'll leave you with this. Dinner with my favorite Utah people in the world, and a picture of my Utah girls, baby Tweet included..

Mwahhh to you all, I miss you (and your weather even if I can't breath or climb up your mountains very well) already. Until next time.....