Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Last week was somewhat bitter sweet for me. I received a rather distressing email from my coach, had a mental freak out and then came to my senses, did some research, networking and resolved the issue.

But, before I go further into that let me back up a little bit. The LaPan's had BIG plans for this year. After our most successful racing year in 2010 we were ready to take advantage of our health our desire and passion for the sport and put it to test. We jumped on the bandwagon when a lot of our local athletes and friends registered for Oceanside 70.3. AND, it just so happens that race is perfect timing for Ironman CDA. Sure, been there done that… but if you follow this link, and the links highlighted as "some unfinished business," you'll understand why it was a pretty easy decision for me to make by registering for it for the THIRD time.

It just so happened that the decision was also made pretty easy when our good friends from Spokane registered for IMCDA as their first IM. They started racing 2 years ago when they got inspired by watching us in 08. Of course we just had to be there when they decided to go for it and do it themselves, you know pay it forward style. And, what better way to support them then to be out there on the course with them, right?

I managed to peer pressure a few others to sign up and before I knew it we had quite the clan on board. So exciting!

Fast forward a few months and things are slowly changing. My WolfPack is deteriorating by the minute. Injuries and life just seem to be slowly eating away at the group and well, it just sucks. To top it off, my bff, my training partner, my partner in crime S is most likely not going to make it. He's had a rough several months and will most likely not make it to the start line. I know what he had planned for CDA and in the shape he was in, there was no doubt in my mind he could do it. It's heartbreaking to say the least. We've done every big race together. I think the only triathlon I've ever done without him out there on the course was the girls only SheRox last May.

We train together, we get exhausted together. We are ready for bed at 8pm on a Saturday night together. I've always known how lucky I am having a spouse that loves what I love. I've always admired couples that make it work when one of them doesn't train. As we all know it's so time consuming. It's a lifestyle.

Right now it's just me. Of course Shane's heart is in it. I can see it in his eyes how badly he wants to be doing what I'm doing. I get it. I understand it. I've BEEN there. Before the last several years that was me. I was the broken one. The always injured. I watched him be fast and successful and while some of the time I was still out there doing the events with him (never healthy), there were also so many that I was on the sidelines. I know how bad it sucks. And, it just breaks my heart that I can't do anything to help him.

We both had such great improvements in our fitness last year and were both on track for great success this year. Somehow, it's just not the same without him. I know he'll recover and get back out there, and possibly next year will be his year to shine, but for now.. it just SUCKS.

As the scenario of Shane's injury started to sink in for both of us I also received an email from our coach last week. Her schedules have always been a little bit sporadic with timing and consistency, but in the end she always pulled through. In the past year she got married, started a new job and moved to the middle of nowhere, Canada. Her job has slowly been eating her alive and I think it finally pushed her over the edge. Her email was saying how she felt awful and she felt like she was letting me down, and could we talk.

Hence, the complete mental breakdown mentioned above. I was just feeling like I was getting back into shape, post Ironman. My first few races were starting to creep up and I was selected to be on a sponsored team that I really wanted to represent well. And, if I'm being honest I felt like this was such a great year for me to test what I've got. Last year I made strides, this year I felt like still have even more! But, suddenly I was faced with this challenge and how could I do it on my own??

Those of you who know me also know that I'm a pretty straight forward person. I'm not over-emotional, or dramatic, but more to the point, matter of fact, glass half full kinda person. That said, once I have something on my mind, I obsess. I overanalyze and I research and I question and I stalk until I have a solution.

I started digging and talking to people and asking lots of questions, but made no decisions or steps until after I talked to my coach. After a long chat with her and hearing about her situation the decision was "easy". I couldn't put more strain on her by asking her to coach me, and as much as she expressed wanting to work with me and how since she couldn't train and race herself it was her way of still being involved, it seemed to me that the decision was already made. Bitter sweet, but made. She needed some time for work and life and such, and I owed it to myself as well to have someone that had the time and energy to work with me. I give so much credit to Lori for what she helped me achieve last year, and I would in a heartbeat work with her again if and when the time were right.

And, without further ado, meet "Mamma-SON." Ya, yah I know that's not her name, but my husband gets quite creative with his names. When I told him about her and showed him her blog and he read a few posts and on and on he has now officially dubbed her "mammas-son." (sorry Michelle, I'm pretty sure this name is gonna stick, so when you meet him - be pre-parred) I think he scares her. She's hard core, tough chick triathlete and coach and after one look at my week one schedule he gave her the nick name :-) I suppose in theory, I should be called "dogmom-son" and she should be called Ms Miyagi, but that just isn't how Shane rolls.

To say I'm excited about this new adventure is a huge understatement. We chatted on the phone for about an hour and it was awesome. She's funny, down to earth, easy to talk to and an amazing athlete. She also used to live here and train with a lot of the people I know and love. Which, I suppose could be trouble - for example within 45 minutes after I returned from my bike ride this afternoon I got a text from her saying she heard I rode with "T" (her old training partner and also one of the few remaining CDA WolfPack gang) and that was awesome and now she could "watch" me through her eyes…..

Let's hope those eyes don't cross over from training time, to cocktail hour :-) Just saying…

But, anyway. I'm super excited to be working with her. A whole new experience for me to work with a coach so closely. While I have no complaints about who I've worked with in the past, I know I've never had this much attention and I'm scared and excited all at the same time. And, the best part about it is she's also doing CDA!!!

It's going to be a good, no GREAT year.

Now, if I could piece my WolfPack back together, it would be PERFECT…..


Molly said...

Awesome!! I'm sure she will be great for you!!!!

Anonymous said...

yeah!!!!!!! this is going to be GREAT :) now S just needs to get healthy again to join the fun - poor guy!

Tri4aCause said...

You are a ROCK! Glad to be a part of your Wolfpack!

mtanner said...

Love it and you are gonna rock girl! So excited to meet everyone at CDA. My absolute FAV race! Go get em'. I don't do change well but this is a good one!!!!

Michelle Simmons said...

Mama-son... love it. Poor Shane... I also know how shitty that is to watch from the sidelines. Hope he can get back at it soon! In the meantime, YOU are gonna have a great year. Yep. Let's do it! :))

Jeff Teale said...

Go Krista! I'm sure Michelle and yourself will become a great team!