Thursday, April 29, 2010

This is what I do besides triathlons...

My week has been pretty busy. I got home from Galveston and watching the Memorial Hermann 70.3 race only to be up all night Sunday night on Barf Duty with my son. I was washing sheets, scrubbing the carpet, cleaning up the hall way and bathroom and waiting for "the next shoe to drop". My kid now knows why you don't buy gas station hot dogs.

So Monday I called in to work and canceled my clients and classes and was a zombie most of the day. I got nothing done when I really needed to get a lot done. I had a looming deadline that I needed to meet. As some of you read in my last post, I am a procrastinator. Well, I was not procrastinating, but nothing was getting done on finishing a training manual for a workshop that I am teaching this weekend covering the circus tricks you see above.

My money making venture that allows me to do triathlons is Pilates. I have been teaching Pilates for over 10 years now. I was teaching Pilates before Oprah jumped on the bandwagon and notified the rest of the country to what we were doing. Pilates has bought my Kuota Kalibur, my Zipp 404's, my SRM power meter, my race entry fees, and my travel all over the world.

So when I was contacted a few weeks ago by a gym in Tulsa, Oklahoma asking me to come and give a workshop on using the EXO Chair and resistance kit (as seen in the picture above), that they would pay for travel expenses, and compensate me generously for my time, I could not pass that up. Sure I had to write a training manual, but that would be easy to get done. Well, I finally finished the darn thing this morning. around 11:30 am and then I had to get it to the printer and bound.

Did any of my workouts get done this week? No. Well, yes. I got a strength training workout and a bike workout in on the trainer. I tanked my swims and runs. I feel bad about that. I feel bad about it because now I feel like a sloth and like my rear end is making an imprint on my sofa cushion and my bed.

I will get a run in tomorrow before heading to work and then off to the airport. I will make sure I get a run in.

And to leave you wanting more, when I get back I will tell you all about this...

Later Gators,


Friday, April 23, 2010


Christi is one of my cool blog followers and she has tagged me to present 10 Honest Things About Myself. Hopefully after this post you all won't be wondering why you read my blog because I gave you TMI or I seem really dull. So, without further ado, here we go...

  1. I am deathly afraid of frogs. I was traumatized with frogs by the next door neighbor boys when I was 3 or 4. Kent and Garrett would collect frogs/toads in a large white plastic bucket. They knocked on the front door and I answered. They put frogs down my pants, the neck of my shirt, and in my hair. Urgh, the thought of the frogs clawing against my skin and peeing on me is giving me shivers but what is worse is remembering how they were croaking and a few were tangled up in my long hair. My mom came running when she heard me screaming and Kent and Garrett were in big trouble but I have never been able to get past it. If there is a frog on our back deck, I won't go outside. If I suddenly come up on one, I start jumping and freaking out to get away. Just ask Johnny Tri. He still laughs about the time I crawled up and over his shoulders and was whimpering when we came upon some frogs on the sidewalk one early morning on a run.
  2. I am a terrible procrastinator. I have always made the deadline, and sometimes I even get started early on the project. I am not sure why I procrastinate. I guess I work well under pressure. I even procrastinate getting out the door to get to where I need to be. I am always cutting it close. My husband hates it.
  3. I paid for laser hair removal and it did not work. I paid a lot of money for it. It was a bit painful. I thought that it would make my life easier. The treatments almost stretched on for 2 years. I think the hair has come back thicker. I'm pissed off about that.
  4. I have a Vitamin D deficiency. The normal range is to have a measurement of greater than or equal to 37.5 nanomoles per liter. My blood work that I had done about a month ago had my reading at 23 nanomoles per liter. That is considered to be a severe deficiency that can lead to rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults. My physician now has me on 8,ooo IU of Vitamin D per day. 200 IU per day is considered normal intake. I eat dairy, salmon, and get out in the sun so I have no idea how I could be so deficient in Vitamin D. I am still trying to figure that one out.
  5. I did not want to have children. Gulp! That is a big one. There was a time that I thought that one or two would not be bad. Then when I found out I was expecting my son I was mortified and angry about it. I did not want to tell anyone. Of course my husband was blabbing to everyone. I had a relatively easy pregnancy but the whole birth thing was awful. I never want to do that again. Now please don't think that I don't love my son. Bud is the best best best thing that I have done. I love him more than chocolate! I would not want to not have been blessed by watching him grow up. Any other kids I have, I will be adopting.
  6. I am really annoyed by people who spend money on an expensive bike, the flashy race kit, pricey sun glasses, cycling shoes that cost more than Jimmy Choos and CANNOT spend even $45 on a helmet. WTF??!!?? All I can say is ORGAN DONOR.
  7. I carry a cheap-ass purse. I have been toting around a black Eagle Creek travel wallet on a string for the past four years. It is starting to fray at the zipper and the Velcro closure is getting less grabby. I have been looking for something else but I hate purses and don't like carrying them and everything I come across is too big for my liking or in dorky girl colors or there is some flower on it.
  8. I pulled the fire alarm when I was in second grade and had the school evacuated and the fire department showed up. I never got caught.
  9. I am a bit of a hoarder. I do throw things away and clean out my closet each year and give things I am not wearing to the Goodwill store but there are certain things that I just cannot get rid of. I wish I had less clutter and someone to help me go through it but right now it is stuck in my house. I am not as bad as those people on the Discovery Health channel but I am envious of people who can have empty spaces in their closets or empty attics.
  10. I hate my gluteus maximus. I am a small person and I have a J-Low rear end. It makes it hard to buy clothes without having to get them altered. Pants will be tight in the hips and at the same time HUGE in the waist. Everything wants to creep up where it should not be. I hate it!
  11. One more for good measure...I have to get motivated to workout. If I don't have a race that I am training for, I am sure that I would be sitting on my duff on the sofa. And with that I need to end this to get to the gym to do a workout before my first client.
Ok, WAY more than you wanted to know about me. I will tag Regina, Rainmaker, and Coach Ken to be honest.

Have a great weekend. I will be down in Galveston at the Lone Star Tri festival and the Memorial Hermann 70.3 race. I will get to see tons of friends from all over Texas and hopefully I can get my picture with someone awesome!

Later Gators,


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Well, Kona is out of the picture.

Just when I was hoping that my blog would get more interesting because I would win one of those coveted Kona race slots.....I did not get picked. So then came the realization that I had to stop lolly gaging around and pick a few races to do so that I would not have to re-name my blog something else like, "Coach Liz's Amazing Couch Surfing Adventure" or "Coach Liz's Incredible Journey Into the Realm of Chocolate" or some other crazy-ass, not quite ready for reality TV special.

I got off my duff and registered for the Seattle Rock n' Roll Marathon. Mind you, I some how convinced my step-brother back at Christmas that this was something he needed to do to make his life complete and meaningful. He has been signed up for this thing for months and training. I'm a bit fearful that he is going to be faster than me come race day with all the fantastic training he is putting in. I gave him a schedule of long runs to do and gave him some advice on hydration and fueling while he runs. He calls me Coach. I think that I should legally change my first name to Coach. Just about everyone calls me that.

Well anyway, I go to register for the event this past week, and it was full. SHIT!!! I was feeling like a real heel. I told my step-brother I was going to run this thing with him and now the stinking race was full. Oh but wait! There were a few slots left. In order to obtain a race slot for the Seattle Rock n' Roll Marathon, I had to become a traitor of sorts. I had to sign up to fund raise for the American Cancer Society. I am going to raise the $1250 dollars for them, but I am still wearing my Team in Training gear for the race. Sorry, ACS for not wearing your gear, but cancer is cancer and I'm sorta passionate about blood cancers. So I'm in. And now my dad is going to read this and tell my step-brother. HA! No sweeping family secrets under the rug here on this blog.

I did a good bike and run workout yesterday in the beautiful rolling hills of Chappell Hill, TX. The fields and hillsides were carpeted in swaths of purple, orange, yellow, and red with all the wild flowers that are in bloom. We had a good rainy season so the wild flowers went crazy this spring.

Today I did a solid 13.5 mile run in 2:07. It was humid and steamy this morning. The temp was probably 68 but it was a warm 68 degrees. The mist hung in the air and Greyhound commented on how it was only in Houston that you could drink the air. We got started at 5:45 in the morning and it was very peaceful and quiet in the city. The park was bustling when we returned 2 hours later.

Finally, Olympic Gold Medal Speed Skater, Chad Hedrick came and spoke at our church this morning. He grew up and still lives only a few miles from where my house is. He is a recent Christian and talked about how meeting his wife and her family led him to accept Christ and what an impact it had on his training and how he approached the Olympic games in Vancouver so much differently than he did in Torino. He shared with us his testimony and the scripture that has meant so much to him over the past few months of training and competition.

1 Corinthians Chapter 9
24 Do you not see that in a running competition all take part, but only one gets the reward? So let your minds be fixed on the reward.
25 And every man who takes part in the sports has self-control in all things. Now they do it to get a crown which is of this world, but we for an eternal crown.

Very powerful stuff. Chad also got a chance to speak to the middle school aged kids as well. I am glad that Houston has such a fantastic athletic role model for our kids to look up to.

Alright, tomorrow is the Boston Marathon! I will be keeping tabs on Ryan Hall and Meb Keflezighi on my iPhone while I am at work.

Later Gators,


Sunday, April 11, 2010

Super Saturday

There are some days that you just roll with the punches and hope that things turn out for the best. There are days that you make plans for and hope that things all fall in place. Then there are those special days that magical things happen. You did not plan it that way, they just came to be. Part of it is being in the right place at the right time. Part of it is just dumb luck.

I'm smiling so hard I look like an idiot!

I was in the right place at the right time!

I had a great Saturday morning watching 6 of my Team in Training participants and a few hundred other brave souls take on the choppy waters of Galveston Bay, make two huge climbs over the Kemah Bridge, and run through the Kemah Boardwalk area and part of Clear Lake Shores. I was very proud of them because it was their first race for many of them and the conditions were not easy for a first timer. I ran the run course with one of my participants and her boy friend and then I grabbed my cowbells and ran up onto the Kemah Bridge. I had one of our TEAM mentors out at the swim exit cheering for people and I would do bike course and run course duty. I had a blast up on the bridge with my three cowbells. I had lots of thumbs-up from the participants as well when they were near the top. I saw one of my kid's swim coaches and I saw lots of friends from the local tri club and various places that I had not see in a while. It was such a treat.

And then, as luck would have it, Andy Potts and Matt Reed were handing out finisher's medals to the First Time Triathlon Finishers. Some of the participants did not even realize that they were in the presence of greatness. Towards the end of the event, I found a break in the people coming across the line and got someone to take some pictures. VERY AWESOME.

From the triathlon, I drove over an hour back across town to witness another feat of greatness. Bud was participating in his swim club's annual Swim-a-thon. The goal is to finish 200 laps in 2 hours. Yep, that is 5,000 yards. He finished and with time to spare! I am so proud of him. I really do think that my kid could kick my butt in the pool now.

Later in the afternoon we went to a crawfish boil at the home of El Esposo's college roommate. We got to see other college friends we have not seen in a long time and that was fun. It is kind of sad that I do not have much in common with these friends any more. They view me as a freak of nature for all the marathons, triathlons, and weird (fun) endurance events that I do. I had to do a lot of talking about our kid's schools, hearing about people's health problems, and recounting our cancelled spring break cruise. No one would have understood my excitement of getting my picture with the two Triathlon SUPERSTARS earlier in the day.

I got a great run in this morning with Greyhound. The weather was perfect and the 12 miles went by fast. Fast because Greyhound or I would take turns throwing the gauntlet down and pushing the pace until someone asked, "Seriously???" At the very end I split off from Greyhound and took the long way back into the park so that I could get my 2 hours of running in rather than 95 minutes of running in. Those last few miles were not easy on my own. My pace was not as quick as it had been two hours earlier when we had ran out of the park. Well, I got 12.7 miles done in about 1 hour and 50 minutes with two walking breaks. I am really happy with that. That has me on pace with my half marathon PR that had no walking breaks.

Now it is off to get Bud signed up for summer league swim team and to do some remodel re-con for our kitchen.

More later!


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Why Am I NOT Doing This Race????

I woke up this morning to get parking details for the Gateway to the Bay Sprint Triathlon that is taking place Saturday morning down in Kemah, TX. This is a new race and it is a qualifier to the Escape from Alcatraz series. I have 8 athletes I have been coaching who are racing and one who is volunteering and the other 4 athletes who have not signed up will get a run in before the race and then we will do cowbell duty. The course has a nasty (sweet!) causeway bridge that the racers have to go over two times on the bike. This is the bridge that I trained on when I was going to the Ironman 70.3 World Championship race in Clearwater, FL. Parking is limited, but I wanted details. Well, I got details...

At 5 am this morning there were 25 race slots still available. That piqued my interest. I click on the race course information. Seeing that the bike course went over the causeway was exciting. It is a soul crushing climb if you are not prepared for it. And you have to do it twice! 25 slots still available??? Then I checked the wave starts. Women 40+ and Athena--46 participants!!!WHAT!!!46!!!ALL WOMEN OVER 40 AND ATHENAS??!!??


The Olympic race the next day only had 100 women listed as doing the race. Again, why was I not doing this race??? The one time that I could have a really good chance to make it up on the podium and I was not registered. This should be a great race. Heck, Andy Potts and Matty Reed are racing.
Yes, I have not had a lot of workout mojo lately but I have been riding my bike and running here and there. Still, not to be an ass, with very little training I know I could go out and put a hurt on some people on the race course for this distance of a race. I'm supposed to be saving money and not registering for these things. It was killing me all the way to work this morning to go teach my cycling class. My buddy Rick told me I should sign up. And then he said that this might be the race where I get three flats or the field is stacked with strong racers.

Thankfully, when I got back on the computer at 7:30 this morning, 25 other people saw that there were race slots available. The race is now closed.

The burning desire to race is still there. I guess my mojo is not lost after all. It was just hiding in my transition bag. I have to clean that thing out. I wonder what else is down in the bottom of that transition bag?

Have a great day,


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Easter Bike Crash

Hmmm, what is new other than the fact that I have been lazy of late? Well, it seems like there are things that are ready to sprout just like my gladiolas in the front garden.

On Thursday evening, I had a mandatory cultural literacy lesson with my kid as I gave him the assignment to watch the original Clash of the Titans. He rolled his eyes at the low level special effects (I love that fake seagull, wait, that is a shadow of a fake seagull flying over those mountains!) and to see Maggie Smith, a.k.a. Professor McGonnigal from the Harry Potter movies, in one of her earlier roles. He seemed to enjoy it. I hoped he had paid attention because there would be a quiz later.

Last week I took advantage of the Good Friday Holiday and did a bike ride with Greyhound through The Woodlands. I am wondering now if I should be riding my bike more often through The Woodlands. The Woodlands seems to be a community that is aware of cyclists and runners on the shoulders of the roads. There is a local sprint triathlon in The Woodlands each year and I hear through the grapevine that there may be a bigger race next year. The people who live in "The Livable Forest" love it so much that they really do not venture south of Beltway 8 unless they have to go to work in the city. I have a feeling that I need to get to know the street names better. For some reason, it may be important in the future.

Once I got home I had to get the kid to swim practice and then find some lunch. After swim practice we headed to the multi-plex and viewed the new Clash of the Titans. The special effects were more current and sadly, no Maggie Smith. We talked about the film, but I kept it brief as I wanted the kid to percolate some more ideas. We did a little shopping at the local REI for some prizes for my TNT tri group's training session in the morning.

I was up early the next morning loading the car with buckets of plastic eggs and safety cones, along with water jugs and luggage to go to Canyon Lake for Easter. The TNT group did my famous 3rd annual Easter Egg Brick. The group rides against the clock for 1 hour to see how many miles they can get done and then they go on a 6 mile run and collect an egg from a bucket at each mile marker. In past years I have filled the eggs wih surprises like a gel or I have had clues in each egg that helped them solve a puzzle at the end that was based on USAT racing rules. This year I went simple and put tags with prizes listed on the tags in the eggs contained in the 3-mile marker bucket. Some of the shwag in the bag included running singlets, Kona coffee, running hats, Yanks!, triathlon key rings, NUUN, and Body Glide. A fun time was had by all and for many of them it was the farthest they had ever run. As soon as practice was over, the kid and I hit the road and headed west for Canyon Lake and we discussed the differences between the old and the new Clash of the Titans in detail.

We got to my Dad's around 2:30 or 3:00 in the afternoon. Val had iced bunny and chick cookies ready for us. Soon the wonderful smell of clam chowder was filling the air. Bud took off on my Dad's bike down the drive way. I told him to put on my helmet and gloves so that if he fell he would not get gravel in his palms. Well, his palms survived but his arm and shoulder look like raw hamburger. Bud was racing down a steep hill to the park on the edge of the lake and he did not see the speed bump at the bottom and when he hit it, he went down on his right side. With the adrenalin pumping, he got back on the bike, rode back up the monster hill and made it back to the house to find me before exploding into tears and telling me he crashed on the bike. I promptly washed the gravel out of his arm and stripped him out of his shirt to see his other wounds. Val was an LVN so she had plenty of gauze pads and bandage rolls to put on Bud's arm, elbow, shoulder, and shoulder blade. He looked like the beginnings of the mummy project. A few cookies and a Tylenol later he was back on the bike. I was a very proud mom. We will now have matching elbow scars!

It was nice to go to church the night before Easter. I got to sleep in....until 7:30 am! It was such a luxury! We saw the deer grabbing a nibble out by the wood pile. My Dad headed into San Antonio to get my step-sister, Kirsten, so she could have Easter diner with us. Soon, the kitchen was bustling with rising bread dough, potatoes in the oven, a ham on the grill and all sorts of other good things to eat. I wish that we did not have to rush off after diner, but we had to hit the road to get back before it was late because there was work and school waiting for us in the morning. Traffic was slow and stop and go on a major interstate highway 75 miles outside of Houston. I guess all the Mexicans (including me) were headed home from San Antonio after the Easter holidays. We got home by 10 pm and I was glad to be off the road.

I have been hearing little rumors of a future Ironman race that will be announced soon. I hear all sorts of things. Exciting things. I cannot wait until all of the information is revealed. I may have to sign up for another one of these goofy races!

Have a great week!