What’s up?! – December 2019

December tested my patience. I messed up my back on December 2 and was unable to do much for most of the month. Patience to step back and not do what I want and what my brain needs this time of year. Patience to ease back into training once I was cleared to do so. Patience going without a car for a week. Patience getting my Wahoo Kickr set up with Zwift so I could start 2020 off with a bang. Patience…patience…PATIENCE!!! Thanks to the help and support from Dr. Chris Feil with Team Chiropractic and Rehabilitation of Ames and Nick Morton with Vitality Massage, I was back to feeling myself by the end of the month and I’m ready to start 2020 strong and healthy.

Training:

Friday night happy hour yardage! Celebrate every stroke!
Sending 2019 out in style! My FTP test indicates a loss of fitness in the off season, but that’s what the off season is for, right?! Time to get to work as I chase my dreams in 2020!!
First run all month!! Grateful to be nearly fully recovered from my back sprain and enjoying fresh air + sunshine + time with my faves!!

Swim: 12,400 yards (7.05 miles)
Bike: 91 miles
Run: 14.2 miles
Strength: 10 minutes of core daily (except for 4 days in early December when my back was a hot mess) + some strength training + more yoga ❤
Meditation: 3 minutes daily since January 1
Monthly Totals: 21 hours & 49 minutes

2019 Totals:
Swim: 286,818 yards (162.96 miles)
Bike: 2785 miles
Run: 835 miles
511 hours & 27 minutes

#explore:

Explore was my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy that I incorporated it into all areas of my life throughout the year. In December, I planned for 2020 and #explore was at the focus of this planning! I’m SUPER EXCITED about what’s on my 2020 schedule and will be sharing that with you soon! I also started to #explore functional power training with Chris Chapman at Movewell Iowa. We are working on getting all of my muscles to properly fire like they are supposed to while doing different motions. This takes work, but the work will be worth it as it should help prevent injuries and keep me healthy and active!

Listening to:

Here is what I listened to this month:

Coeur Sports Earsplitz
Holidays!

KonaKamps always has me inspired and motivated!! Some of this months faves were:
Ironman St. George 2020 Six Month Preview
Damien Bethencourt, Overall AG Champion, Ironman Malaysia 2019
Nicola Beck, Ironman Wales 2019
PR Ironman in 2020
Ironman Texas 2020 Six Month Preview
Tom De Bruyn, Overall AG Champion, Ironman Cozumel 2019
Rebecca Duxbury, Ironamn Wales 2019
Nathan Ford, Ironman Cozumel 2019
Kelly Collins, Ironman Cozumel 2019
Off Season

Witsup Podcast:
Linsey Corbin
Heather Wurtele

The Same 24 Hours:
Susan Lacke: Life’s Too Short and Running Outside the Comfort Zone
Notes on Nonsense: Holidays are Hard
Notes on Nonsense: Talking about Procrastination
Kevin Curry: Fit Men Cook
Notes on Nonsense: Publication Day is NOT Nonsense

Clean Sport Collective:
Emma Coburn, Steeplechase World Champion
Roger Pielke, Expert in Sports Governance
Clean Sport Panel with Rob Krar, Dylan Bowman, Alysia Montano, and Kara Goucher
James Wilks, UFC Fighter and Producer from The Game Changers

Kelsey Abbott brought on:
Jennifer Brown: With Diversity and Inclusion

Ironwomen Podcast has so many amazing women on!
Swim, Bike, Ruff – Kearci Smith

Rich Roll brought on:
Breaking Boston: Scott Fauble is Leading American Marathoners into the Olympics
Kendra Little is Becoming More: Broadening the Gender Identity Conversation

Michael Gervais has brought some amazing people on his Finding Mastery podcast:
Missy Franklin on Being a Champion in Victory and Defeat

C Tolle Run brought on:
Jessie Diggins – Brave Enough

Run4PRs:
How fast can you become? What are your limits? The Law of Diminishing Returns Explained

Hidden Brain:
Creatures of Habit

Conquer Athlete Podcast:
Functional Power Training with Dr. John Rusin

Trained:
Simon Sinek: Finding Your “Why”

Crime Junkie:
WANTED: A Christmas Killer
SERIAL KILLER: Highway of Tears

Reading:

Beyond Grit: Ten Powerful Practices to Gain the High-Performance Edge by Cindra Kamphoff has practical tools and actions to help you improve your mindset and become the high-performer you want to be. “Kamphoff shares the tools and strategies she’s taught executives, entrepreneurs, NFL ProBowl athletes, Olympians, college athletes, and championship teams. Based on almost twenty years of research and consulting with the world’s best, she provides a practical, inspiring, and easy-to-use guide to radically accelerating your performance and improving your happiness.

In this book, Kamphoff teaches you how to develop Ten Practices of the World’s Best:
1. The world’s best are gritty.
2. The world’s best are clear on their purpose.
3. The world’s best become a master of their thoughts.
4. The world’s best know themselves to master yourself.
5. The world’s best dominate the controllables.
6. The world’s best own the moment.
7. The world’s best choose empowering emotions.
8. The world’s best own who they are.
9. The world’s best live and let go.
10. The world’s best choose their courage zone.

You’ll also discover 52 life-altering strategies that you can put in your High Performance Toolbox to develop these practices and change your daily life. Each chapter describes one strategy and ends with a powerful affirmation to help you develop the High Performance Mindset. A widely respected keynote speaker, trainer, and coach, Kamphoff possesses an inspiring style that combines high energy with strategies that work. Her proven system can transform the performance of anyone who wants to up their game, regardless of their field. Whether you re seeking to own your dream business, triple your income, be the best you can be in your sport, or merely achieve a higher level of personal satisfaction, Beyond Grit shows you how. Inspiring and practical, Kamphoff will show you how to ”own your why,” develop your grit, take control of your future, discover your purpose, thrive under pressure, and be your best more often.”

Chasing Kona: From Back of the Pack Smoker to Racing the Ironman World Championships in Kona by Rob Cummins was a fun, quick read. “Sitting watching TV with a cigarette in one hand, a black coffee in the other and nursing a crushing hangover I switched channels until I found sports. There was some sort of bike race on and I half watched while lighting another cigarette off the butt of my last one for a minute before switching channels again. Just as I hit the button on the remote the commentator mentioned something about the athletes swimming before and running afterwards as well as racing the bike. I thought he said something about the run being a marathon but that couldn’t be right.This sparked my interest and I switched back, but he was talking about something else so I waited for him to get around to describing exactly what this race was. I didn’t have long to wait as he said they first did a 2.5 mile swim, then 112 miles on the bike all topped of with running a marathon. I was stunned. I didn’t think that would be physically possible and as I lit another cigarette I wondered how many days did they have to do it. I guessed it would have to be three days. Swim the first day, bike the second and run the third but it still sounded like a crazy thing to do. Then he said that they did it all in the one day, one after another without stopping. I was completely incredulous. And hooked. I remained glued to the TV and learned that these bronzed, muscular Greek God looking athletes weren’t all professionals either. There was an amateur or “age group” race as well Although I could hardly tell the difference between the pros and amateurs. They all looked unbelievably fit. As I sat there mesmerized I swore to myself that I’d race there someday. I’d stop smoking and drinking and somehow do “The Ironman” At the time I had no idea what that meant or how I would do it and after a while as things have a way of doing I got busy with life and I forgot all about The Ironman and Hawaii. I forgot until several years later when I had actually given up smoking and had taken up triathlon. It had taken me two years and sixteen races of swimming breast stroke before I learned to swim properly. I never once looked even remotely like Kona material but I wanted to have a go at doing an Ironman. It took another three years before I plucked up the courage and lined up for my first one in Nice, France. I finished in the last quarter of the field, hours behind the athletes racing for those precious Kona slots. Nothing I had done up to then had given any indication that I should have had a reason to believe I had a chance at qualifying, but three years later when I asked Aisling, my wife if she thought it was possible she immediately said yes and then she added let’s do it. Aisling’s belief in me started us on a journey that led to me treading water on the most iconic start line in triathlon, waiting for the cannon to fire at the start of the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii. This is how we overcame all of the odds and discovered what it would take to get to the Ironman World Championships. This is our Kona story.”

The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts by Gary Chapman is a great read to make sure you and your partner are speaking each other’s language to really connect with each other. “Falling in love is easy. Staying in love—that’s the challenge. How can you keep your relationship fresh and growing amid the demands, conflicts, and just plain boredom of everyday life? In the #1 New York Times bestseller The 5 Love Languages, you’ll discover the secret that has transformed millions of relationships worldwide. Whether your relationship is flourishing or failing, Dr. Gary Chapman’s proven approach to showing and receiving love will help you experience deeper and richer levels of intimacy with your partner—starting today. The 5 Love Languages is as practical as it is insightful. Updated to reflect the complexities of relationships today, this new edition reveals intrinsic truths and applies relevant, actionable wisdom in ways that work.”

Attitude of Gratitude:

I’m excited and grateful to step out of the box I’ve been in and experiment with self coaching in 2020. I’m excited to try new things knowing that some of these things may not work for me, while other things may be the best thing ever for me! Bring on the thinking outside of the box, the experimentation, the trial and error, the freedom and control to do it my way, and the excitement with trying something new!
So grateful to Dr. Chris Feil at Team Chiropractic and Rehabilitation of Ames for helping me get back to training.
So grateful for Dr. Chris Feil with Team Chiropractic and Rehabilitation of Ames who continues to work to get me back to healthy!
So grateful for the dream that Emily Hampton had to start Ignite Yoga and build such an amazing community!
So grateful for a few days of warmer weather in December to go outside in flip flops without freezing my toes!
Grateful for a beautiful morning moon setting on Friday the 13th!
So grateful that I can spend time with my mat while rehabbing my back.
Grateful to get some chlorine therapy next to my fave!!
I’m grateful that I can ride the bus when my fave is gone with the car and I get to walk to the bus stop on a nice winter day.
I’m grateful for Dr. Chris Feil at Team Chiropractic and Rehabilitation of Ames for helping get me back on track this month.
So grateful to be spinning on the bike…even if it is an easy ride!
I’m lucky to have these two support me while I ride.
The morning sunrise was so magnificent…this picture doesn’t even begin to do it justice. WOW!
Grateful for our new Tuff Mutt hands-free running leash from our Secret Santa. We can’t wait to enjoy all of the miles together with this!
Very grateful for these beautiful December days with unseasonable temperatures are amazing!!
The girls and I are so grateful that Dad is home after being gone for a week.
So grateful to be rolling again!
Wow!! Grateful for beautiful sunrises!!
Grateful for Kyle at Kyle’s Bikes to help me get my Wahoo Kickr ready to ride!!
Grateful for framily and matching PJs!!
Grateful for these little beauties!! Missing them this Christmas!!
Grateful for these love bugs!! “Give me all the treats!!”
Sushi for Christmas dinner…YES PLEASE!!
Today I had all the excuses for not moving…
-I didn’t pack warm enough gear for the drop in temperature today.
-I should just go home and try to get Zwift working.
-I’m still not quite 100% after my back sprain.
-I don’t have a coach, so I can run tomorrow or this weekend.
-I’m tired. I should just go home and rest.
I ignored all of these excuses, put on my sweatshirt, and ran home from work. I celebrated every step, every breath of air, and every drop of sweat. And yes…I was reminded why I don’t wear cotton when I workout!!
Friday night happy hour miles + quality time with my 2 faves! My heart couldn’t be happier!
First official Zwift ride…yep, I think I’m hooked! Lots to learn, but I can see how this will help me get faster + stronger in 2020! #grateful
Grateful that yoga is a family affair in our house!
So grateful to have worked out to the point that the Normatec Recovery boots got some use!
Celebrating some yards…especially when they aren’t always easy.
Burning the sh!t I want to let go of as I prepare for 2020. I am so grateful for the Athlete Mastermind program that Jenny Hayes is putting on.

How was your month of December?! What were you grateful for last month?! Are you ready for the start of 2020?!

What’s up?! – November 2019

November was full of fun, gratitude, and heart! I spent time really listening to my heart and letting it guide me in my training, life experiences, and planning for 2020! Here is a snippet of what November looked like for me:

Training:

This month I decided to do whatever I wanted, when I wanted. No structured training. No 4 am wake ups until I was ready. No routines. It was awesomely awful! I swam when I wanted. I biked when I wanted. I ran when I wanted. I did intervals when I wanted. I incorporated more strength training. I spent more time with my mat. I went back to 10 minutes of core strength daily because it is a better fit for my schedule. I’ve decided I definitely thrive off of routines and consistency. While this freedom in training was much needed to reset my body and mind, it is time for me to regain the routines and consistency that I enjoy as I get ready to head into 2020.

Intention: WIN (the day)
After being away from the water for two weeks, it felt so amazing to get some #chlorinetherapy today! #wintheday
Crushing bike intervals + spending time with my fave = pure joy!
So grateful to get to run with these rad ladies at the Coeur Sports women’s run in Des Moines.

Swim: 18,900 yards (10.74 miles)
Bike: 75.4 miles
Run: 57.0 miles
Strength: 10 minutes of core daily + more strength training + yoga ❤
Meditation: 3 minutes daily since January 1
Monthly Totals: 35 hours & 20 minutes

#explore:

Explore is my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy to be incorporating it into all areas of my life…including racing the Hillbilly Hike 1/2 Marathon. When I went into this race, I wasn’t sure if I was going to run with my friend, Robin, or try to push myself and see what I could do. I decided to let my legs tell me. They told me to go after it despite the frost + ice covered running surfaces. I’m glad I pushed myself, am happy with my results, and am looking for more opportunities to #explore + break out of my comfort zone + push myself to new limits in 2020!

SO SLICK! Photo credit: Kathy Shupe King
Another Hillbilly Hike 1/2 marathon is in the books!

Listening to:

Here is what I listened to this month:

Coeur Sports Earsplitz
Bike Safety #itcouldbeme (featuring Triny Willerton)

KonaKamps always has me inspired and motivated!! Some of this months faves were:
World Champion Anthony Philippe, Ironman World Championships 2019
World Champion Jana Richtrova, Ironman World Championships 2019
Eric Engel, Overall AG Champion, Ironman Louisville 2019
Kristin Goett, Ironman Louisville 2019
Rob Watson, Ironman Barcelona 2019
Daniel Day, Ironman Louisville 2019
World Champion Bobbe Greenberg, Ironman World Championships 2019
Jacqui Guiliano, Overall AG Champion, Ironman Florida 2019
Ryan Guiliano, Overall AG Champion, Ironman Florida 2019

The Same 24 Hours:
Notes on Nonsense: Hair Color is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Destinations are Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Kids are (Really) Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Positive Vibes are BS
Nir Eyal: Indestractible
Danielle LaPorte: The Desire Map and Her 24 Hours
Sarah Ban Breanthnach: Simple Abundance, Shoes & Gratitude

Endurance Planet:
Sub 2-Relay, HRV Guided Training, How to Approach Hill on MAF, Ironman After 50, and Quelling Anxiety around those ‘What If’ Thoughts

Clean Sport Collective:
Frank Shorter, 2-time Olympic Medalist in the Marathon
Frank Shorter, Part 2
Mary Cain Tells Us Her Story
Amelia Boone, 4-Time OCR World Champion

Kelsey Abbott brought on:
Andrea Owen
Kate Marolt

Ironwomen Podcast has so many amazing women on!
Ignite the Fire – Renee Kiley
Respect the Race – Ellie Salthouse
Chasing Gold – Emma Coburn

Rich Roll brought on:
Dean Karnazes Is Running For Good: Lessons On Longevity & Embracing Discomfort
He Ran Across America – On Plants with Robbie Balenger

Michael Gervais has brought some amazing people on his Finding Mastery podcast:
Angela Naeth on Discovery and Acceptance
Mick Fanning on Hard Work, Resiliency, and Sacrifice
Ronnie Lott on Exhausting Every Moment

The Bek and Siri Show brought on:
Dr. Stacy Sims – Women are NOT Small Men
Siri’s Secret Sauce

Run4PRs:
Why you NEED to take time off after a marathon
Optimizing Your Offseason to Become Faster
Goal Setting & Reaching Your Potential
Natural Speed, Durability, & Mental Toughness: Assessing Your Strengths & Weaknesses
Winter Running: Snow, Ice or Treadmill?

Reading:

80/20 Triathlon: Discover the Breakthrough Elite-Training Formula for Ultimate Fitness and Performance at All Levels by Matt Fitzgerald and David Warden is for triathletes of all levels helping them balance training intensity to maximize performance. “Cutting-edge research has proven that triathletes and other endurance athletes experience their greatest performance when they do 80 percent of their training at low intensity and the remaining 20 percent at moderate to high intensity. But the vast majority of recreational triathletes are caught in the so-called “moderate-intensity rut,” spending almost half of their time training too hard–harder than the pros. Training harder isn’t smarter; it actually results in low-grade chronic fatigue that prevents recreational athletes from getting the best results. In 80/20 Triathlon, Matt Fitzgerald and David Warden lay out the real-world and scientific evidence, offering concrete tips and strategies, along with complete training plans for every distance–Sprint, Olympic, Half-Ironman, and Ironman–to help athletes implement the 80/20 rule of intensity balance. Benefits include reduced fatigue and injury risk, improved fitness, increased motivation, and better race results.”

The 5 Second Rule: Transform Your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage by Mel Robbins provides you with tools to create action and change. “Throughout your life, you’ve had parents, coaches, teachers, friends, and mentors who have pushed you to be better than your excuses and bigger than your fears. What if the secret to having the confidence and courage to enrich your life and work is simply knowing how to push yourself? Using the science of habits, riveting stories, and surprising facts from some of the most famous moments in history, art, and business, Mel Robbins will explain the power of a “push moment”. Then, she’ll give you one simple tool you can use to become your greatest self. It takes just five seconds to use this tool, and every time you do you’ll be in great company. More than eight million people have watched Mel’s TEDx Talk, and executives inside of the world’s largest brands are using the tool to increase productivity, collaboration, and engagement. In The 5 Second Rule, you’ll discover it takes just five seconds to:

  • Become confident
  • Break the habit of procrastination and self-doubt
  • Beat fear and uncertainty
  • Stop worrying and feel happier
  • Share your ideas with courage

The 5 Second Rule is a simple, one-size-fits-all solution for the one problem we all face – we hold ourselves back. The secret isn’t knowing what to do – it’s knowing how to make yourself do it.”

Two Concepts to Guide Your Off-season Training by Matt Edwards is full of some great information for things you can do in the off-season to better prepare yourself for the coming season. During your off-season, take time to focus on technique, strength training, your weakness, and endurance.

6 Ways to Avoid “Bad Race Blues” by Mackenzie Madison has some great tips for getting back on track after a “bad” race and “avoid feeling mentally stuck in a previous disappointment.”

How to Master Your Athletes’ Motivation by Jamie Blanchfield is very insightful on what influences motivation and what enhances motivation. Motivation ebbs and flows with changes in life, training, work, etc. Self efficacy is key to motivation and success.

Feeling Stuck: Regain Momentum Using This Simple Sport Psych Tool by Carrie Cheadle is a great way to assess the change you want to make. What do you want to stop doing, what do you want to start doing, and what do you want to continue doing to create the change you desire?

Inspire Your Gratitude Practice with These Gratitude Journal Prompts by Jiji Lee has some amazing tips for how to start your gratitude journal and prompts to get you going when/if you get stuck.

Attitude of Gratitude:

I’m beyond grateful, humbled, blessed, and honored to be a Coeur Sports ambassador for my 6th year! 2020 is going to be amazing!
So grateful for Friday happy hour swims with my fave!
I’m so grateful for a strong body + mind so I can do what I love!
Sunday mornings are for snuggles and Sudoku! Grateful for my snuggle buddy!
Grateful for some recovery yards to loosen up the stiff body after yesterday’s 1/2 marathon!
So grateful to be getting back to the weights and strength training the entire body!
So grateful for warm boots when there is snow on the ground and the windchill is -1*F on my walk into work.
Grateful for the opportunity to ride the horse carriage at Snow Magic.
Getting the opportunity to run with new ladies at the Coeur Sports women’s run was a fantastic way to start the day! SO grateful!
Looking for a way to make squats (or wall sits if you don’t have suspended straps) more challenging?! Add a dog to the mix! Basil LOVES to help, but sometimes her version of helping creates more of a challenge for me. Grateful for her unconditional love and support!
Grateful for some time with my mat!
Grateful for Nick with Vitality Massage for the recovery time I needed.
Grateful to get to cheer these two on at their swim meet!
So grateful for my Coeur Sports teammate, Triny, and the work she is doing to make roads safer for everyone!
Grateful for time on my mat with Robin by my side!
Grateful for a morning run with my fave!
Grateful for spending time with my SBT suspension trainer and building strength!
Grateful for time to PLAY in the water!
I love sushi! So grateful for this yummy goodness!
So grateful that Mom came down to join us for an evening of joy + entertainment!
Wow! This was a great show! Grateful I got to experience it!
Anytime I get to spend in the water is time that I find calm and peace! So grateful!
Grateful for this girl’s friendship! Morning miles + girl talk are icing on the cake! What a perfect start to the day + week!
“Follow your heart. Life is too short to be sidetracked by the things everyone else wants you to do.” ~Unknown
My heart speaks swim/bike/run! It brings me calm, it brings me joy, it builds self confidence, it often teaches me something new, it breeds discipline, it connects me with others, it forces me to be more courageous, it allows me the freedom to mess up & still end up ok, it provides me an outlet, it makes me stronger – physically and mentally, it fills me with gratitude, and SO much more! What does your heart say?! Do you listen?!
I love digging deep and feeling the accomplishment of overcoming obstacles and achieving something that once seemed impossible! I’m so grateful my body allows me to push it!
So grateful for these peeps (and Basil) to run with before devouring all of the yummy Thanksgiving food!
Friendsgiving! SO grateful for my framily!
So grateful for this framily! I can’t believe how much these two have grown!
Now that Thanksgiving is over, the tree is up. I’m grateful for making all of the 2019 memories (that are documented with medals on our tree) and the bright lights that remind us to always shine bright and give our best in everything we do!
Intention: I get to
It isn’t always easy. Mother Nature threw down some 38-40*F temps, rain, and winds (hello IMLou 2018 weather). She likes to think that she holds the power, BUT SHE’S WRONG! I hold the power when I keep the mental chatter positive!

How was your month of November?! What were you grateful for last month?! 

What’s up?! – October 2019

October was a roller coaster ride. It was full of some really high highs, and some pretty low lows. I’m happy to be moving into November, figuring out what “normal” is for us, planning for 2020, and preparing for winter.

Training:

This month I took part in the Coretober Challenge that Multisport Mastery + JHC Coaching put together. It was a good challenge for me. I have been doing 10 minutes of core strength daily for nearly 2 years (with the few exceptions around race days or when I have been sick), so the extra 5 minutes was a definite challenge for the first week or two, but I’m so glad I took part in this challenge!

Grateful to have my Friday night happy hour swims back in my schedule!
Grateful for my reminder to believe in myself and what I am doing!
Intention: Gratitude
15 miles for my Friday happy hour in 30+ mph winds. Some of my gratitude thoughts while running:
*I’m grateful for a strong body + mind.
*I’m grateful for warm temps + sunshine.
*I’m grateful for completely new running routes.
*I’m grateful for a job that I love.
*I’m grateful for Halloween decorations to keep me entertained.
*I’m grateful to have my long run done before the rain shows up this weekend.
*I’m grateful for the beautiful fall colors.

Swim: 13,850 yards (7.87 miles)
Bike: 90.7 miles
Run: 78.3 miles
Strength: 15 minutes of core daily + some yoga ❤
Meditation: 3 minutes daily since January 1
Monthly Totals: 31 hours & 52 minutes

#explore:

Explore is my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy to be incorporating it into all areas of my life…including being at my first IRONMAN race that I wasn’t racing or volunteering (aka working) on race day. This was WAY out of my comfort zone!! I struggled going to this event knowing that I wasn’t racing (when I originally was suppose to be toeing the start line). I wanted to race SO badly, but also knew that this race had to be different for me. I had to use this race to explore. Explore being involved in IRONMAN without racing. Explore being involved in IRONMAN without volunteering and “working” on race day. Explore what is deep in my heart. Explore living my truth. So many memories were made, perspective was gained, and laughter in Lou filled my heart. I’ll have more on what I learned down the road.

Ironman Louisville from a new perspective. What a fun day! Congrats Rob on your amazing race!

Listening to:

I am finding that I love to listen to podcasts while I set up and tear down labs at work, so if you have any suggestions, please send them my way! Here is what I listened to this month:

Coeur Sports Earsplitz
Coeur at Kona 2019 (Chapter 1: Benedict, Donato, Colville, Simmons)
Coeur at Kona 2019 (Chapter 2: Perkins, Sophiea, Flynn, Ritchie)

KonaKamps always has me inspired and motivated!! Some of this months faves were:
Jon Morton, Ironman Wisconsin 2019
Amanda Marek, Ironman Wisconsin 2019
Evan Wetzel, Ironman Wisconsin 2019
Michele Sorenson, Ironman Vichy 2019
Jacob Barnes, Kona 2019 Preview
Michelle Enslin, Kona 2019 Preview
Daniel McParland, Kona 2019 Preview
Jess Perry, Kona 2019 Preview
Jana Richtrova, Kona 2019 Preview
Ray Picard, Overall Champion, Ironman Canada 2019
World Champion Aaron Tomasz, Ironman World Championships 2019
World Champion Natia Van Heerden, Ironman World Championships 2019
Overall World Champion Ruth Purbrook, Ironman World Championships 2019
World Champion Kevin Fergusson, Ironman World Championships 2019
World Champion Mary Mitchell, Ironman World Championships 2019
World Champion Gill Fullen, Ironman World Championships 2019
Liza Rachetto, Overall AG Champion, Ironman Louisville 2019

The Same 24 Hours:
Notes on Nonsense: Rock Bottom is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Detoxing is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Weekends are Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Numbers are Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Subtitles are Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Doing the Easy Thing is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Wagons are Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Waiting is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: FOMO is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: People Pleasing is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Hard is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Other People are Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Repetition is King (and also Bullsh*t)
Notes on Nonsense: Someday Soon is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Being Stuck is Bullsh*t
Notes on Nonsense: Motivation is Bullsh*t
CrisMarie Campbell & Susan Clarke: The Beauty of Conflict for Couples
Patrick Vellner: Cross Fit, Hard Work, and “We are Not Machines”

Endurance Planet:
Julie Moss: The Crawl of Fame, and Finding Purpose and Personal Growth Through Sport
Kona Special: Race Recap of the 2019 Ironman World Championships with Thorsten Radde

Clean Sport Collective interviewed Kara and Adam Goucher on the 4-year bans for Salazar/Brown for Doping Violations. If you want to support anti-doping in sport, you need to take a stand. Invest your money in brands that have taken the pledge to support the pursuit of clean sport and athletics through. Tyler Hamilton, Convicted Doper and Whistleblower in Cycling was also interviewed by Clean Sport Collective. Tyler is a former professional cyclist who received two doping bans while competing, gave back his Olympic gold medal, and eventually testified against Lance Armstrong in the federal case against him.

Kelsey Abbott brought CrisMarie Campbell and Susan Clarke onto the Find Your Awesome Podcast. Susan said something that really hit home with me, “Speaking up is more important than shutting up and dying.”

Ironwomen Podcast has so many amazing women on!
Living the Dream – Kim Morrison
The Kona Show – Ana Lidia Borba
Follow Your Heart – Liz Baugher

Rich Roll brought on Amelia Boone. She is the most decorated and dominate female in obstacle course racing. She struggles with childhood trauma and an eating disorder. “I don’t want to be ‘the eating disorder recovery girl’, I don’t want to be ‘the athlete’. This is just me. I am super flawed, I’m super complex, just like everybody else out there.”

Michael Gervais has brought some amazing people on his Finding Mastery podcast:
Apollo Ohno on Competition, Olympic Greatness, and Transitions

Lone Wolf – Motivational Video For All Those Fighting Battles Alone with Tony Robbins is very insightful. I was moved by this piece and am going to implement some of the rituals he was addressing in this video.

Reading:

“Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens is captivating. It was the perfect book to take me away into another world. “For years, rumors of the “Marsh Girl” have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life – until the unthinkable happens.”

“Snap, Crackle, Pop: My Road to IRONMAN Kona 2019” by Barbara Perkins was highlighted by USA Triathlon this month. Barbara is one of my Coeur Sports teammates who qualified for the IRONMAN World Championships at IRONMAN Santa Rosa in May. She has overcome some obstacles to get to the start of the IRONMAN World Championships, but as Barb says,  “Each of us deals with our own set of circumstances, injury, bike mishaps and more. You have to trust that you have done (mostly) everything in your power to get to that start line happy and healthy. Enjoy the day! Celebrate the moment! Because hey, this is actually happening.”  This is a good reminder that I GET TO DO THIS SPORT! ❤

“Manage Your Personal Energy to Improve the Quality of Life” by Darius Foroux is a great reminder that when we do things that energize us (even if we don’t feel energized when doing it), we empower ourselves. We need to focus on the 20% of the activities that improve the quality of our lives and incorporate these activities into our lives at least 80% of the time. “What is one thing I can do today to improve my mood?”

“Triumph Over Heartbreak: My Kona 2019 Story” by Barbara Perkins was highlighted by USA Triathlon this month. As I mentioned above, Barbara is one of my Coeur Sports teammates who qualified for and competed in the IRONMAN World Championships. She is a fierce competitor and warrior. “You will find your true, innermost self out in the lava fields of the IRONMAN World Championship course. Some people will fall victim to the brutal conditions. They will give up, but others will conquer the course and everything inside them that doubted they could make it there. Most will come away with some itch left unscratched, drawn again to the island to discover its unique possibilities.”

Attitude of Gratitude:

Grateful for a dog that loves to run and is sad when I run on the treadmill.
Grateful to have a treadmill to run on in our basement when the weather is bad.
Grateful for my body to allow me to push it even when I have ALL. OF. THE. EXCUSES. TO. NOT. SHOW. UP!
Grateful to have my CECs done for my personal training certification!
So grateful to have such an amazing running buddy! Basil is my girl and she definitely LOVES to run!
Grateful to see on our calendar that I DON’T have parent teacher conferences this year!
Grateful to have Sound Probiotics boosting my immune health!
Grateful for my Normatec Recovery boots to flush out the legs post long run!
Intention: Strong
8.5 miles with 4×4 minute Z4 interval paces of:
8:00/mile
7:53/mile
7:41/mile
7:30/mile
.
Grateful to be finding some speed again in these legs!
Surprise!! So grateful to have friends that we can ride our bikes and crash their party!! Miss this girl beyond words now that we aren’t right next door to each other, but she’ll always be one of my “sisters.”
Intention: Courage
The goal was to start off easy + negative split the first 6 miles and run the last mile easy. I would say this was a success!! Grateful to my body for allowing me to push myself + the beautiful weather today!!
Intention: Courage
Grateful to my Courage flower from Fellow Flowers for the constant reminder to be courageous on this run!!
Grateful for this beautiful morning sunrise on our way to Lou.
Grateful to spend the weekend with my girlfriend + Coeur Sports teammate, Erika.
Grateful to experience IRONMAN Louisville weekend + SO MUCH LAUGHTER with this crew.
Grateful I go to volunteer at registration on Friday morning with this crew.
Grateful I got to turn social media friends into real friends! So awesome to meet Kristen in person!
Grateful we got to meet up with our Coeur Sports sister, Erin on the bike course!
Grateful my fave enjoys having loads of fun! Our outfits got lots of laughs and cheers from the athletes!
So grateful for Nick at Vitality Massage to help keep me active + healthy!
Grateful for the beautiful fall colors that showed up a bit later than normal.
I’m so grateful for friends that like to try something new. Glass blowing is so much fun and I got to make a beautiful pumpkin for fall.
Grateful for the guidance and knowledge of a skilled glass blower to help me make my pumpkin.
Grateful that I am FINALLY able to do “knee to nose” during yoga.
Thank you to Robin and Basil for 8 BEAUTIFUL fall, morning miles with me!
Grateful that my fave likes to play in the pool post swim!
Grateful for Triny and the #itcouldbeme campaign to help make roads safer for everyone!
Grateful that our girls love to go to the parade and enjoy the socialization.
Grateful for my babies, beautiful fall colors, and fall walks!
So grateful for Nick at Vitality Massage to help keep me active + healthy!
Grateful for fall campfires…even if the fall season was EXTREMELY short this year!
Life is a roller coaster ride full of highs and lows. I’m grateful for good people to help lift me up and run with me when I’m at a low. 6 beautiful fall/early winter miles this am with my faves!
Grateful to connect with my mat and the intention of fear.
Grateful to reconnect with my inner Arial.
Grateful for early morning rides with my fave!
Grateful for some easy miles off the bike to start my day!

How was your month of October?! What were you grateful for last month?! 

What’s up?! – September 2019

September was a roller coaster ride. I struggled with wanting to crawl back into my comfort zone vs. continuing my quest to being true to myself. In that quest, I have learned a lot about what I don’t want more than what I do want. As I continue on this quest, I know I will eventually find answers and as long as I stay true to myself, I will have no regrets.

Training:

Training has been so enjoyable lately. I still find myself occasionally fighting off the negative demons, but those times are getting fewer and fewer and I’m so grateful for that! This month had me riding OUTSIDE WITH MY FAVE for 4 rides ranging from 40 to 70 miles EACH. I can’t remember the last time we rode so many miles together over multiple rides in one month! My heart is so happy!

Intention: Gratitude
I started to incorporate intentions before each workout during the middle of the month and it has really served me well. During this swim, I kept focus on the gratitude and was so thankful to my body for allowing me to push it.
So grateful to have my fave to ride with on this nearly perfect summer day for 60 miles! 🙂
I’m so grateful to have lots of time with my favorite girl to think and process my thoughts. She’s such a good listener!

Swim: 10,450 yards (5.94 miles)
Bike: 306 miles
Run: 53.3 miles
Strength: 10 minutes of core daily + some yoga ❤
Meditation: 3 minutes daily since January 1
Monthly Totals: 34 hours & 27 minutes

#explore:

Explore is my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy to be incorporating it into all areas of my life…including following my inner compass. We all have that inner voice that talks to us. Sometimes we listen to it and sometimes we ignore it. Thinking back to those times when I listened to my inner compass, the outcome was almost always amazing and often better than I thought it would be. When I didn’t listen to my inner compass, the outcome was often negative and I regretted my decision to ignore it. In recent weeks, I decided to follow my inner compass and regain control of my life. My training. My physical health. My mental health. Reigniting the fire in my soul. This month I’ve been doing what I want. If I feel like riding bikes, I ride. If I feel like running, I run. If I feel like swimming, I swim. If I feel like doing yoga, I do yoga. If I feel like sitting on the couch and turning into a couch potato…well, I tried not to do too much of that this month, but there was some of it. The freedom to #doitmyway has been a breath of fresh air and one I am SO grateful for! I have been following my inner compass and setting intentions before my workouts centered around play, fun, gratitude, joy, fierce, ease, sunshine, truth, light, appreciation, and being present. What a game changer to reawaken my passion, fire, and soul.

I love getting to ride with my fave!! Life is a roller coaster ride full of ups and downs! I’m so grateful to have my fave by my side! Instead of screaming throughout the ride, he throws his hands in the air and enjoys the ride!

Listening to:

With my new job, I am able to listen to lots of podcasts as I set up and tear down labs. I am finding that I really enjoy this, so if you have any suggestions, please send them my way!

KonaKamps always has me inspired and motivated!! Some of this months faves were:
Safety at Races, Mental Toughness, Debbie Downer
Katie Clayton, Ironman Lake Placid 2019
Matt Cymanski, Ironman Lake Placid 2019
Laurie Keteri-Smith, Ironman Lake Placid 2019

Rich Roll has a lot of great guests on his show. Recently he brought David Epstein onto the show and it was AMAZING!! “You don’t change your identity overnight. You have to start with these little keyhole experiments until something that you think that was just an interest becomes a real passion or a vocation.” ~David Epstein
He brought on Catra Corbett in 2018, but I finally listened to it and WOW!! This woman runs crazy distances…200+ mile races and a 425 mile trail run. After getting arrested for peddling crystal meth, she was scared straight in a jail cell when she hit rock bottom. She left behind meth addiction, disordered eating, and sexual and emotional abuse. Sobriety saved her, but running gave her a completely new life. “Getting out is the first step. You don’t have to become a runner. Just get out and see what the world has to offer.” ~Catra Corbett

Kelsey Abbott brought Cody Byrns on her Find Your Awesome podcast. His life experiences have him living the fullest life possible. “I cannot change what happened to me, but I can change what I do today and make the most of what I do today.” ~Cody Byrns

Ironwomen Podcast has so many amazing women on!
Outside the Comfort Zone with Emily Cocks and Susan Lacke is a great listen! Emily gives her podium picks at Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Nice, France and Susan talks about her experiences that fueled her new book Running Outside the Comfort Zone.
Race with Purpose with Nicole Valentine was heart warming! Nicole’s mission is to create change. “Nicole shares her passion for inspiring women in sport, finding purpose beyond the finish line, and showing others how to use fear as an opportunity for growth.”
Into the Deep End with Julie Moss was so inspiring. This woman was the one who put Ironman racing on the map in 1982 as she crawled across the finish line in Kona. “You have the opportunity to be a Wonder Woman for your own life and you better take it!” ~Julie Moss
Small Bites, Big Goals with Selah Schneiter is SO INSPIRING! She is a 10-year old who is the youngest person to have ever climbed “The Nose” of El Capitan. “How do you eat an elephant? Small bites. Some things are hard and that’s just reality” ~Selah Schnieter

Michael Gervais has brought some amazing people on his Finding Mastery podcast:
Katie Zaferes is the #1 triathlete in the world after recently winning the ITU World Triathlon Series. She is a 2016 Olympian and has her sights set on qualifying for the 2o20 Olympic Games. “Mastery is unattainable, but trying to master it is everything.” ~Katie Zaferes
Meb Keflezighi is the only runner to win the Boston Marathon, the New York City Marathon, and an Olympic medal. He is SO inspirational! “Quitting is not my best.” ~Meb Keflezighi
Javier Gomez is a professional triathlete who has raced and won at so many different distances. While he is currently in peak training for the Ironman World Championship that will take place in Kona, Hawaii on October 13, he is so humble and grounded. “Enjoy life; it is the most important. Enjoy what you do all of the time.” ~Javier Gomez
Bethany Hamilton is a professional surfer who has survived a shark attack. At the age of 13, she was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark who took her left arm from her. One month after the attack, Bethany returned to the water and within two years she had won her first national title. “Mastery is more about loving what you’re doing, rather than nailing it perfectly or being the best of the best.” ~Bethany Hamilton

Reading:

Stop Saying Your Fine: The No-BS Guide to Getting What You Want” by Mel Robbins was the kick in the pants that I needed to remind myself that life is too short. It is time to stop waiting for my life to change and create the change that I want. “There will always be setbacks, so you must learn how to deal with them. When you hit an obstacle, you shouldn’t be questioning yourself, you should just be figuring out the alternatives. You should be like water. Water doesn’t consider its flow. If something gets in the way, it just moves around the obstacle. You need to adopt the same mentality.” ~Mel Robbins

10 Ways to Make IRONMAN Training Fit Your Lifestyle has some great tips on creating a healthy balance between life and the Ironman lifestyle.

Attitude of Gratitude:

I ABSOLUTELY LOVE riding with my fave at home home by the lake! #happyheart
Riding with my fave on one of my favorite routes brings me pure joy! I am in Minnesota and he is in Iowa in this picture.
Grateful to spend time with our twin nieces and play in the water!
Love these 3!! I’m so grateful they love to have fun + eat ice cream!
I am truly blessed to have my 2 favorite running buddies run with me at home home by the lake!
So grateful for the reminder from Steena and Fellow Flowers to live my truth! This has been my focus since Ironman Lake Placid!
Love my girls! Happy 7th birthday to my baby! Love you Basil!
This brought a HUGE smile to my face throughout the entire ride! It was such a fun + easy ride!
Bluebird skies + lots of sunshine + no wind + 2 wheels on the open roads = EXACTLY what my heart needed today! #happyheart #livingmytruth
A reminder to fill your heart with joy. After meditating, I looked up to see this “heart” shaped screw in our ceiling.
So grateful for such a magical playground!!
Grateful that my fave and I got to spend a long weekend in Madison!
Grateful to have Mike Reilly sign our copy of his book, “Finding My Voice
So happy to be riding one loop of the Ironman Wisconsin bike loop before the big dance!
The rural Wisconsin views always make my heart happy!
Grateful that my fave loves to have fun on this roller coaster of life!
Grateful that my fave loves to play around and enjoy life with me!
Blessed to run a “Mississippi Mile” with my fave in Madison!
Happy to be giving back to a sport that has given so much to me!
So grateful to all of these volunteers (+ many, many more) for helping to make dreams come true at Ironman Wisconsin for so many athletes.
Happy to be donating my hair to Wigs for Kids.
Grateful to branch out and go to trivia night, which was a bit uncomfortable as I am clueless when it comes to trivia.
This is the first time I have relaxed in the Normatec Recovery boots since IMLP in July. It felt truly amazing and I was grateful to have the neighbor’s dog snuggle up next to me.
Grateful for the bright colors of this Coeur Sports Liberty kit! It made me so much more visible riding on the open roads!
So grateful that my fave put this surprise reminder in my lunch pail. He’s a keeper!!
Grateful to have Nick with Vitality Massage work out all the kinks!!
Relishing that “high” from doing it my way! Oh…and LOVIN’ my new Coeur Sports Sorbet kit! SO FUN!
When the intention is set to play and have fun during my swim workout, that is exactly what I do…my swimsuit definitely helps set the intention also!
So grateful to be back in the water after a hiatus.
So grateful for amazing peeps in my life!
Thank you Ruth for thinking of me and being one of my biggest supporters!
I’m glad to have reconnected with my mat and have Basil coaching me through the moves.
Grateful to have a solid double digit run where my body felt so good I decided to run a little longer than planned and of course celebrate with a dance party post run! “If you like piña coladas and getting caught in the rain…”
Grateful to be a “model” in the Coeur Sports email that was sent out! Hello Liberty kit…I love you!
SO GRATEFUL for spontaneity in riding cross bikes with my fave after work!
Grateful to see some “friends” on my 11 mile run!
Grateful for my Friday night happy hour!!
Grateful for 70+ miles on two wheels with my fave on new terrain!
Grateful to my Coeur Sports sister, Jess, and her family for having us over for dinner and enjoying each other’s company!!
Grateful to Robin and Basil for running with me!
Grateful for some yards next to my fave!!
So grateful to reconnect with my mat at the hot yoga studio!! I’ve truly missed this and am so glad to be back!!

How was your month of September?! What were you grateful for last month?! When your inner compass speaks, do you listen?!

What’s up?! – August 2019

August was an uncomfortable month. I’m changing things up. I don’t want to swim/bike/run because that is what I have known for so long and what I think I SHOULD do. I want it to be something that I really WANT to do. So I took a step back to dig deep within myself and search my soul to try to figure out what it is that truly makes me happy and lights my fire. It is a process. One that I struggle to be patient with, but I believe that time will give me the clarity that I need for how and where to move forward.

Training:

After Ironman Lake Placid at the end of July, I strived to find more balance. As a result, my training wasn’t top priority this month. I took some time to figure out what I TRULY WANT and where I WANT to go, but I have learned that I really do LOVE swim/bike/run and can’t imagine my life without them in it.

Swimming (exercise really) is ALWAYS better with friends! Grateful for pool shenanigans with these two peeps!
Truth: I rode 32 miles after work. I had lots of time to think. I realized just how much I REALLY do LOVE to ride my bicycle when I do it my way. I love the open roads, the wind in my face, the sun on my back, and the freedom I feel!
This was my favorite run so far this year! I found peace, freedom, and oh so much joy on the trails. I couldn’t stop smiling! It is exactly what I needed!

Swim: 8132 yards (4.62 miles)
Bike: 92.8 miles
Run: 28.8 miles
Strength: 10 minutes of core daily + various full body strength
Meditation: 3 minutes daily since January 1
Monthly Totals: 19 hours & 20 minutes

#explore:

Explore is my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy to be incorporating it into all areas of my life…including recreating triathlon and sport as my happy place! With the uncertainty of where I want to go with sport, I have taken a break from coaching. Kelly, with Ever Racing,  has been AMAZING for me! We developed a great coach/athlete relationship over the last couple of years. She has helped me get the strongest + fittest I have ever been. I am forever grateful for her knowledge, guidance, support, and commitment to me!

Because I am recreating triathlon and sport as my happy place, I invited a dear friend (and former colleague) to complete the Bluff Creek Triathlon with me. I wanted to do this race with the only goals of having fun + finishing with Traci! When you are committed to crossing the finish line with someone else and your only focus is to help them get to the finish line, it gives you new purpose, removes the pressure, and opens space for a LOT more fun!! I am so grateful she said “yes” to this adventure and so proud of her for her perseverance and fortitude!! Congratulations Traci on your 1st place podium finish in your division!!

We both made the podium in our divisions!

Listening to:

With my new job, I am able to listen to lots of podcasts as I set up and tear down labs. I am finding that I really enjoy this, so if you have any suggestions, please send them my way!

KonaKamps always has me inspired and motivated!! Some of this months faves were:
Jennifer Campbell, Santa Rosa 2019
Clarice Chastang Lorenzini, Ironman Boulder 2019
Tom Oosterdijk, Overall Champion, Ironman Cork 2019
Daniel McParland, Ironman Cork 2019

Coeur Sports EarSplitz Podcast featured Kate Bevilaqua “Achieving the Difficult” is full of inspiration! Kate is the Ultraman World Champion. In case you are wondering, the Ultraman covers 320 miles on the Big Island of Hawaii. It includes 6.2 miles of swimming + 261.4 miles of biking + 52.4 miles of running over 3 days. WOW!!!

The TEDx Talk with Mel Robbins How to Stop Screwing Yourself Over is spot on! “Your soul needs exploration and growth.” It sure does! Routine and monotony are boring!

The 5 Second Rule to Change Your Life with Mel Robbins and Lewis Howes is eye opening! WOW!

The TEDx Talk with Germaine Gaspard The Power of Using Your Pain to Fuel Your Success had me nodding my head A LOT!! “The moment that I decided to be the author of my story rather than a character in it is the moment that my pain began to evolve into my power. To do this, I had to love myself enough to walk away from anything and everything that required me to be and play small.” WOW!! YES!!

Share the Road: How Cities Can Keep Cyclists Safe is a great listen! We need to stop separating motorists from cyclists. We are all people trying to get from point A to point B. We all have people in our lives who love us and whom we love. Please remember that it isn’t just a bike out on the road, it is a person on a bike. #itcouldbeme

Rich Roll has a lot of great guests on his show. Recently he brought Gwen Jorgensen onto the show and it was AMAZING!! Gwen Jorgensen’s Champion Mindset: Big Dreams, Taking Risks, and Following Your Heart is full of lots of snippets that anyone can relate to sport and life. ❤

Kelsey Abbott brought Sarah Nannen on her Find Your Awesome podcast. “Sarah became a military widow and solo mom of four young children in 2014 when her husband died in an aviation accident. Her journey through grief opened her eyes to a renegade way of living life that goes beyond just surviving the ride. This idea now informs her work with people breaking through their limitations to live extraordinary lives.” Sarah has some amazing insights that don’t simply relate to loss and grief, but can relate to all areas of life. “Life is full of hard stuff. So, if we’re not going to have some pleasure along the way, then we’re missing the point.” ~Sarah Nannen

Ironwomen Podcast has so many amazing women on! Amanda Wendorff is a must listen to! Amanda addresses how she overcame many obstacles thrown her way in 2018 to get to the top step of the podium at Ironman Cork in 2019. Paula Findlay is such an inspiration as she talks about transitioning from ITU to 70.3 racing, overcoming injuries, and how she handles pressure. Believe in your best is full of great nuggets that any athlete can benefit from!

Reading:

“A tribute to Bethany – Keep triathlon fun” by Marni Sumbal is a great reminder that we should keep fun in the sport of triathlon. “When you have fun and truly enjoy yourself, you are more capable of dealing with everything else in life and there’s purpose with your training and racing. We all know that life isn’t always fun. Life is tough. It’s often serious, sad and difficult. Triathlon is a beautiful escape from life. Triathlon shouldn’t be all serious and hard work. Sure, being dedicating and working hard makes you a better athlete but if you are overly serious, competitive and extreme, you probably aren’t having much fun.”

Ghost by Jason Reynolds is a quick, easy read and written at a level that is perfect for adolescent individuals. “Ghost wants to be the fastest sprinter on his elite middle school track team, but his past is slowing him down in this first electrifying novel of a brand-new series from Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award–winning author Jason Reynolds.
Ghost. Lu. Patina. Sunny. Four kids from wildly different backgrounds with personalities that are explosive when they clash. But they are also four kids chosen for an elite middle school track team—a team that could qualify them for the Junior Olympics if they can get their acts together. They all have a lot to lose, but they also have a lot to prove, not only to each other, but to themselves.
Running. That’s all Ghost (real name Castle Cranshaw) has ever known. But Ghost has been running for the wrong reasons—it all started with running away from his father, who, when Ghost was a very little boy, chased him and his mother through their apartment, then down the street, with a loaded gun, aiming to kill. Since then, Ghost has been the one causing problems—and running away from them—until he meets Coach, an ex-Olympic Medalist who sees something in Ghost: crazy natural talent. If Ghost can stay on track, literally and figuratively, he could be the best sprinter in the city. Can Ghost harness his raw talent for speed, or will his past finally catch up to him?”

Coeur Sports had a blog post, We’re Outspoken about Inclusivity, that REALLY tugged at my heartstrings. I see so many people shy away from doing a triathlon because they fear the unknown and when they do finally show up on race day, there are other athletes who are rude and sometimes down right mean to them when they ask questions or try to interact with them. Why can’t we all be encouraging and inclusive?! There was a day when each one of us was a newbie in the sport. Do you remember your first triathlon?! Please, please, please be nice and help a fellow athlete out!!

Attitude of Gratitude:

Grateful that my fave enjoys the same things I do. Hiking to the falls post Ironman only resulted in a few minor scratches due to tired legs and falling.
Grateful we got to explore part of Skaneateles, NY via a boat tour.
So happy to be on the open water! You can take the girl off of the lake, but you can’t take the lake out of the girl!
So grateful we got to spend some time with two of our favorite people! Can’t wait to spend more time with you in September!
I missed my baby girl SO MUCH while on vacation! I am so grateful she missed me too!
SO GRATEFUL to be going back to a job that I LOVE after a 3 week vacation
Ah…Sushi and the best company are two amazing ways to end the day!
Grateful to play in the water with my fave by my side and not feel the pressure of structured training.
Grateful for a BEAUTIFUL evening to listen to our friend play live music at our local Coop!
Grateful for BEAUTIFUL morning sunrises!!
Grateful for my standing desk at work. It is nice to have the option to work from different positions when I am at my desk.
SO GRATEFUL I GOT to pound the pavement for a few miles after work for the pure joy of running and not because I SHOULD or HAVE TO.
Grateful for time with family!
Grateful for family fun at the Iowa State Fair!
Grateful that the big “kids” still like to play and have fun like little kids!
Grateful for the Heritage Farm recognition at the Iowa State Fair. The family farm has been in the same family for 150 years.
“Smile for the camera, Traci!” SO GRATEFUL that I got to do the Bluff Creek Triathlon with this fantabulous lady!!
Photo Credit: Dave Mable
So grateful to Steena for thinking of me and sending me this perfect reminder to “live my truth”!! Fellow Flowers
So grateful that I got to run with Robin! I love the early morning sunrises, the fresh air, the conversations, the community, the sounds of feet hitting the pavement, sweating together, and the hugs at the end!
Grateful for the lunch date at the food truck with my fave…one of the many advantages of us both working on campus!!
Grateful for time picking berries with loved ones!! Fresh fruit…YUMMMM!!
Grateful for time on the water with some of my loved ones!
Grateful to get to spend the weekend with these peeps!!
Grateful that my twin nieces want to come visit us and adventure with us!!
I have some of the best people in my life! Grateful Erika is sharing with me courage, clarity, and balance as I #livemytruth
Love this dog so much! She keeps the play in playful and I am forever grateful for her youth and spunk!
Nature’s beauty is everywhere…even on my short walk from the car to my building on Iowa State’s Campus. Grateful to love my job!
Grateful to see the early morning painted sky!
SO GRATEFUL to run with my faves at home home! Love them and the lake!
Grateful to get to reconnect with my mat on the lake with my fave + my Dad.
I absolutely LOVE swimming at home home! So grateful for this magical opportunity!
Living my truth!
I am blessed beyond words to have such an amazing partner in life!

How was your month of August?! What were you grateful for last month?! What things do you do to maintain balance in your life?!

What’s up?! – April 2019

As I roll into my last month of teaching, before changing careers, it is time to reflect on April. April has brought us some days of warmer weather, had me spending time with my Coeur sisters, crossing the finish line of another 1/2 marathon, and riding outside on the open roads with my fave. With all of these amazing things in the rear view mirror, I have high hopes for the month of May!!

Training:

I had another SOLID month of training!! I completed 10 minutes of core strength daily + I’m still on the green streak in Training Peaks!! I have not missed one workout so far this year…18 weeks and counting!! BOOM!!

14 Ironman finish lines amongst this #swimsquad and more to come in our futures!!
“Growth comes at a point of resistance; we learn by pushing ourselves to the outer reaches of our abilities.” ~Josh Waitzkin
Keep the focus and finish STRONG!! My 7th Drake 1/2 marathon is in the books!! You can read more about it here.

Swim: 38,700 yards (21.99 miles)
Bike: 282 miles
Run: 95.5  miles
Strength: 10 minutes of core daily + various full body strength
Monthly Totals: 54 hours & 40 minutes

#explore:

Explore is my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy to be incorporating it into all areas of my life…including training!! Before each race, I think back to key sessions that better prepared me (both physically and mentally) for the race I’m about to embark on. I even jot these key sessions down so that I know the dates to refer back to in my training log. On April 23, I had a key swim session that gave me the confidence that I can have a stellar PR swim this year! The workout…

Swim 100 at the 3rd fastest pace from the 4 x 100 descending above. Assuming that felt “right” for z3/mod hard type effort this will be your pace.

Swim as many 100’s as you can at this pace with :20 to :25 rest between. If using a tempo trainer, your rest is one beep cycle.

If off by 3 seconds, rest a full minute and try again.

If after 1 minute you cannot hold the pace you are done. Cool down.

Well…my 3rd fastest 100 was 1:38.7/100 yards. Could I really hold 1:39/100 yards for more than 5 intervals?

100s Z3 effort until failure for breakfast…goal pace = 1:39/100 yards with 20 sec recovery between each; failure = 1:42/100 yards
Self doubt told me I could only maintain my goal pace for 5×100.
Self confidence told me I was strong and could crush this pace for at least 10×100.
Giddy!! That’s how I felt when I successfully completed 20×100 at 1:3x.x + nailing 21×100 before failure!! #explore #befierce #beatiger #believe

Apparently so! #befierce is the mantra for the Coeur Team in 2019 and it helped me crush my expectations and self doubt during this workout and I know it will help me with many more in the future!!

Tiger Team!! #beatiger

Listening to:

KonaKamps always has me inspired by some amazing peeps!! Keri Houston is an age group champ at Ironman New Zealand 2019. Michelle Enslin is the age group champion for the 50-54 age group at Ironman South Africa 2019 after coming back from surgery. Her gratitude is contagious!

Rich Roll brought Johann Hari on his podcast to talk about addiction and depression. “The opposite of addiction isn’t sobriety. It’s connection.” With the world at our fingertips (quite literally…that phone you’re holding is taking you away from making connections with the people around you, so put it down and make memories with those around you) we can disconnect from those around us just as quickly as we can connect with them by putting the technology away. “If you suffer from addiction or depression, this is a must listen. If you don’t, chances are someone you care for does. This conversation can provide the insight and tools for better understanding the struggle — because mental health truly impacts everyone.”

Reading:

Peak Performance: Elevate your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness is amazing!! It kept me engaged and wanting to read even more!! The authors suggest “optimally alternating between periods of intense work and rest; priming the body and mind for enhanced productivity; and developing and harnessing the power of a self-transcending purpose.” There is so much useful information in here!! It was one that I struggled to put down so I could get adequate sleep each night!!

Leaning into:

Discomfort…I know that when we step outside of our comfort zone and embrace discomfort that we experience growth. As a result, I have been leaning into discomfort more in my personal life and am making huge strides. Discomfort isn’t easy and it takes a lot of work for growth to happen, but the rewards that come from it are definitely worth leaning into and embracing the discomfort.

Attitude of Gratitude:

Grateful for the support of SBR Sports, Inc. SBR is my go to for chlorine removal + blister prevention + easy wetsuit removal. Use KEPL19 at checkout for 20% off your next order of these amazing products!!
Grateful for the warmer temps + sunshine as I put my feet up with a good book while the dogs enjoy their bones!!
WAHOO!! Grateful that the IronHippie is seeing green in Training Peaks again post surgery!!
Grateful for the yoga mat + some vitamin D!!
Grateful for a strong body to put up some all time records during my most recent FTP test!!
Grateful to have Basil run by my side and the IronHippie back in the saddle!!
Grateful to Normatec Recovery for helping me bounce back from tough workouts so I can nail the next session!!
These two…so grateful for their unconditional love!!
Grateful for some girl time with Robin as we pound the pavement!!
Grateful to Nick with Vitality Massage for keeping me active!!
So grateful to meet up with some of my Coeur sisters!! Pre race hugs are where it’s at!!
3 cheers for 3 Drake 1/2 marathon finishers!! Grateful to cross another finish line!!
So grateful I get to fill my belly with this yummy sushi!! Especially after racing!!
Grateful for freedom on 2 wheels on the open road with my fave!!
Grateful to have a coach who thinks I’m a mermaid…specifically Ariel. 🙂
Mindfulness is a practice. I am so grateful to be practicing this and becoming more aware of my thoughts/emotions as a result!

How was your month of April?! What were you grateful for last month?! 

What’s up?! – March 2019

March was a turning point. Spring FINALLY showed up, the snow is nearly all melted, a sh!t ton of dog poop has been picked up, I finished my last parent teacher conferences EVER, and I am now just over 2 months away from the end of my last school year teaching. With the end of the school year comes the building excitement of starting my new career and nerves (in a good way) of doing something different for the first time in 16 years. Meanwhile, these are some of the highlights of March…

Training:

I had another SOLID month of training!! I completed 10 minutes of core strength daily + I’m still on the green streak in Training Peaks!! I have not missed one workout so far this year…13 weeks and counting!! BOOM!!

Love you more and SO glad you’re back in the water!!
My graph from my bike ramp test is so pretty!! Thanks Coach Kelly for helping me realize the strength I had didn’t disappear!!
So grateful for spring weather so I could wear the same Coeur Sports “Not Today Cancer” kit for my bike + run! Oh…and super grateful for my favorite girl who loves to run!! #basillovesrunning

Swim: 26,500 yards (15 miles)
Bike: 227 miles
Run: 79.2 miles
Strength: 10 minutes of core daily + various full body strength
Monthly Totals: 42 hours & 32 minutes

#explore:

Explore is my focus word in 2019 and I’m happy to be incorporating it into all areas of my life…including racing!! I ran the St. Paddy’s 1/2 Marathon with the goal of averaging an 8:30 min/mile pace and I am pleased as a Leprechaun finding a pot of gold with my performance!! I had an overall finish time of 1:51:44 (8:32 min/mile average pace)! I finished 2nd out of 20 in F40-44 and 89th out of 341 overall. I am super excited about where 2019 might take me as I continue to #explore and push my limits!!

Double medal race day at the St. Paddy’s 1/2 Marathon where I got 2nd place in my age group!

Listening to:

KonaKamps had me inspired by two AMAZING women!! Maggie Walsh won Ironman Maryland 2018 at her FIRST EVER triathlon!! She didn’t just win her age group, she was the first female to cross the finish line and break the tape!! Reiko Donato won Ironman Chattanooga 2018 for women 60-64 on a VERY special day…her birthday!! That’s right!! She turned 60 years old and won!! Jana Richtrova won Ironman Cozumel 2018 for women 35-39. This will be her 7th time at Kona!! Congratulations to all of these amazing ladies!!

Rich Roll Podcast with Todd Herman On the Alter Ego Effect: Unlocking the Hero Within is a long listen, but has so many useful nuggets in it! Wow! “There’s a big difference between interested and committed.” ~Todd Herman

Find Your Awesome Podcast with Kelsey Abbott had Jessica Broderick on to talk about grief and what one goes through when they lose a part of their identity. Jessica was a pro triathlete who recently retired and explains the grieving process she went through when this part of her identity was removed. “You can be healthy and fit. They are two very different things.” ~Jessica Broderick

Reading:

I strive to have an attitude of gratitude daily, so when I saw the recent blog post by Carrie Cheadle titled How an Attitude-Of-Gratitude Can Also Lead to Better Performance, I knew I had to read it! Gratitude has so many amazing benefits, why wouldn’t people try to be more grateful?!?!

  • “Greater feeling of happiness
  • Improved sleep
  • Boost your immune system
  • Feeling more optimistic
  • Better at handling adversity
  • Increased amount of exercise
  • Experiencing more positive emotions
  • Raises self-confidence
  • Less physical pain
  • More resiliency”

She has some great tips for how to start your own gratitude practice! She recommends “bedtime reflection, a happy jar, and a gratitude journal.” Every night before I go to bed, I write down as many things as I can think of that I’m grateful for from the day. I don’t limit myself to only 3 things and I try to make sure I am not writing down the same things everyday. I also try to take pictures of things that I am grateful for and I look back at these pictures at the end of each month as I compose my “What’s Up?!” monthly blog post. Compiling the “Attitude of Gratitude” section of my blog post each month is a great way to remind myself of all of the amazing things that I have in my life to be thankful for. Taking the pictures also keeps me focused on gratitude daily.

Celebrating:

42!! My birthday fell on a very LONG work day (teach all day + parent teacher conferences all evening), but this being my last parent teacher conferences ever was one of the best birthday presents I could give myself!! I did get to celebrate over the weekend as I consumed loads of sushi + raced the St. Paddy’s 1/2 Marathon!!

Love me some sushi…SO YUMMY!!

Attitude of Gratitude:

So grateful I got to see these two beautiful faces…even if it wasn’t for the happiest reason.
So grateful for girl’s night out playing board games with these beauties!! #needtodothismoreoften
The first time in my 16 years of teaching that I was given flowers from a student.
Love my mama! She’s still the boss even after 42 years!! 🙂
So grateful, blessed, and lucky to have my fave supporting me, encouraging me, and cheering me on in races and life!!
I am so grateful for the sun, bluebird skies, and warm temps for a tank top + shorts while running outside!!
I am grateful for noticing the little things in life…the random heart that the cord of our fan made on the floor by my bike trainer.
I am grateful that the weather is nice enough to rake up all the leaves and play in them with my favorite girl!!
SO grateful my legs and mind were strong allowing me to put together a solid 7 mile run with 1100 feet of climbing!! 🙂
After a tough run (1100 feet of climbing over 7 miles), I was so grateful to find a way to use my Normatec Recovery boots in the car since I had to be there for a few hours post run.
Grateful to meet the Iron Hippie’s parents for lunch!
So grateful that my body and mind are strong and they allow me to run 15 miles after a busy day at work!
So grateful that I got some run love with Robin in the sunshine (even if the temps were cold)! I’ve missed my girl time!

How was your month of March?! What were you grateful for last month?! How can you document them in a meaningful way for you?!