Off Season Adventures

Ahhhh off-season! The time of year to sleep in, stay off the bike, skip chilly a.m. pool workouts and enjoy life. Oh, and learn how to run. My goal for off-season this year was to work on my run, and I have been putting in the work. In the past few weeks, I've run a lot - hill repeats, long slow days, easy runs, mile repeats, and even a 10 mile race in Huntington Beach (in the pouring rain)!

Last weekend I accomplished something that's been on my list for quite some time - to run around the Back Bay from our house. The fun part about this run is that there is no shortcut. Don't feel good? Don't want to run anymore? Tough %$&#! There's only one way home and it's around the whole thing. The total mileage from door to door is about 11 miles. It's a beautiful run that took me from our house to Castaways Park overlooking the harbor, then to Pacific Coast Highway and finally in around the bay on Back Bay Drive.

This curvy but flat section of the Bay is one of my favorite places. It's relatively quiet, it's flat, and it takes you through some stunning vistas. Once you get to a certain point on Back Bay Drive you can see the other side of the Bay where you hit the 9 mile mark. You can also see Jamboree and how far away it is and you know that between you and Jamboree is a steep little climb up to Eastbluff. It felt great to come up that hill and head on across Jamboree! Absolutely gorgeous post-rainy day views from every side of the bay!

Then there's been the early nights - it's been getting dark here around 5pm which is crushing my runs! I don't mind running when it's dim, but the other night it was pitch black even with my headlamp on. I'm going to switch the runs to the a.m! My paces are improving and I feel healthy overall. I'm hoping to continue chipping away at my running until I'm satisfied and ready for next year. 

Lastly, we're heading to Arizona tomorrow for Ironman Arizona! We're volunteering at the race (run aid station #2) and we will be registering to race 2012 on Monday. I realize this concept is befuddling for non-triathletes who look at me and question our sanity that we're driving to Arizona to volunteer and pay for our own trip/travel expenses only so that we can pay money to register for an IRONMAN. Yes, yes, I realize this is a little odd for outsiders. But, for those of us that are triathletes, this makes perfect sense. 

The Iron distance (2.4 mi swim, 112 mi bike and 26.2 mi run) is an impressive feat of physical, mental and emotional strength and no one person finishes (or starts) that race alone. That distance is traversed by a single person, with the aid, support, assistance and encouragement of many. At every race, the volunteers have made a tremendous difference in my overall experience and time. Seeing volunteers I know (like at Orangeman) was like having your personal on-course cheerleaders where often, there were no spectators. I feel that by volunteering, we are giving back to the community/sport that has given us so much. There's also quite a handful of Team FC athletes (and our coach Joby) who are racing on Sunday, so it will be great to be out in AZ supporting the team, being inspired and watching our friends and teammates succeed.

Lastly, we will register. Volunteers get priority registration after current IMAZ athletes and before it opens up online. My biggest and most amazing sponsor is paying for my race entry fee and I'm beside myself with gratitude! I am so excited about what next year holds for me on so many levels. With the year wrapping up, I continue to feel grateful and humbled by the amount of positivity, love, friendship, and possibility that exist in my life. 

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible"~Walt Disney

1 comment:

Big Daddy Diesel said...

Have fun in Arizona, I lived their for 17 years, I recommend trying Slices Pizza on Mill Ave, about a mile from Tempe Town Lake, a little small Pizzeria that sells pizza by the slice