Memorial Day Memory Swim

 This morning master's swim at the pool was cancelled. Instead we met at La Jolla Cove. Before the swim began at 0700 we toasted, with 2/3 full Dixie cups of lemonade,  all the members of masters who have passed away.

I was excited my wetsuit was stretchy enough to fit.

Tim was excited his wife woke him up at 0600. On his one day to sleep in, she made him leave his warm bed and made him ride his bike all (5 miles) to La Jolla Cove. Warm bed vs cold ocean. A post swim mocha from Pannikin may have been the reason for the smile. 

Post swim. Smiling because I wasn't mistaken for one of the seals. However by the 4th of July...

The day is young so I am off to have more fun. Happy Memorial Day.

25 Week Fun

It's official.
Summer is here, as evidenced by Tri Club of San Diego Aquathlon on Thursday night.

Tim is not racing for two. He's racing for three.
Himself, his wife, and his baby to be.
It's a lot of pressure.
Faster Tim faster! 

You didn't think just because we were having a girl she'd be slow, weak, and wimpy did you?
Thanks to Julie she's the youngest member of "I drop boys"  and has very fashionable apparel.

As for me racing the aquathlon....I boycotted as there wasn't a division for pregnant women. Actually, that's not true, race directors probably would have made me my own division. I had legitimate concerns though about racing. You see, I can swim fine relatively speaking, face it if you are slow prior to pregnancy, you'll still be slow,  and no flip turns would be a bonus. I do believe that is where I loose my time in the pool these days. Running is no problem. I'm still running enough  to blow holes in my shoes.

I should pitch them, but they are currently my I understand why men keep t-shirts with holes.

 The real concern would be my slow transition out of my wetsuit (provided I could sausage myself in to begin with).  After that I would struggle to get my running shoes on and tied. Bending over is a bit difficult and slow. By the time I got out of transition most people would be on the second loop of the run and that's where the danger begins. Yup, by the time I finished there would be a huge line for the post race buffet of pizza and salad. Being pregnant and at the back of the dinner line, now that is dangerous.

24 and 34

I am now 24.5 weeks pregnant. I count halves on this.
  I am now 34 years old. I don't count halves on this topic.
The bump is getting bigger.

Tim and I celebrated my  birthday in proper style.
 A morning swim and run before Tim headed to work.
I was lucky and had the day off.
Score 1for me!
I continued my celebration without Tim and got a pedicure.
Somehow, I do not think he minded missing that activity.

Lately I have noticed lots of things make me smile.
A few more of the little things that make me smile, in random order:


I am touched by the number of people who took the time to wish me well on this day. It's really neat reconnecting with people from all walks of life. I am inspired now to stop being such a Facebook slacker as it really makes a difference in somebody elses day.

This fabric:

It will be the back of Baby Neuschwander's quilt.
I love it and I click on the image at least 100 times a day.

I have a slight tendency to perseverate and become obsessed with things.

These Pom Poms:

Pom Poms! What ?

Seriously, could they be cuter?

 They are Martha Stewart party decorations.
How cool?

Photos credits from  the on line blog Into the Fun Lane and Pinterest.

The pom poms are a must !
Tim's going to be so excited to help me hang them ;)
Our baby's nursery will likely not look as chic as those ones.
I don't think she'll remember and hold it against us.

This Mug:

A gift from Stacy and it's the cutest mug ever.
Not only are the graphics adorable but it says what I believe to be true of most of the women I know:

"I am failry certain if given a cape and a nice Tiara I could save the word"

Says it all doesn't it? The key is it can't be any old tiara, it must be a "nice tiara" in order to save the world.

This birthday cake by Tim:

This is the same cake, Boston Cream Pie, Tim made for me on my birthday 5 years ago.
We had just started dating after meeting through the Tri Club San Diego.
Tim helped me get my birthday wish that year. It was to ride 100 miles.
How time flies!.
That memory makes me smile and a little teary eyed too.

Xterra West Championship: Santa Cruz

Race Report:

Well I didn't actually race. However, a season without racing is one thing. A season with out a race report is another. Besides, if Tim and I are pregnant....then Tim and I raced right?  Maybe not , but this race venue is too good to keep secret. Not enough people race Xterra, so I'll take the liberty to promote it. 

Friday morning we flew in to San Jose early and picked up our rental car by 8:00 a.m. 
In case you are wondering which is more economical flying vs. driving here is the breakdown. Southwest tickets San Diego to San Jose $60 per person each way. Full size car rental $15/day. Full size fits one bike box with ease and we've fit two before. Cost of bike box on Southwest $50 each way. Price to not see tail lights for 5 hours: priceless.

The drive to Santa Cruz from San Jose was short and sweet. About a half hour. We hadn't had breakfast yet so we stopped by Emily's bakery and grabbed coffee and a sweet treat to fuel our upcoming adventure. Decaf coffee for me and a mocha for Tim. Yum and double yum and we were off.

The race venue, Wilder State Park was beautiful. Tim assembled his bike, while I flitted around. I went with Tim to ask the race directors about the bike course. They told Tim the bike course was well marked and he wouldn't get lost. Tim asked for a little more information, what parts were technical and he should practice the line a few times. They suggested Tim ask Conrad Stolz, 4x Xterra World Champion, his opinion. He was sitting a few feet away and chimed in if you are willing to wait 2 minutes I'll take you myself and show you. Basically off they went. 

Not to sound like a celebrity stalker, but would Tiger Woods play a round of golf with anybody asking about course specifics? I think not. I know triathlon is small time comparatively but the athletes work just as hard (for less) and I love that. 

Off I went on the run course. It was gorgeous and I brought my phone so I could take lot of pictures.

After running the entire course plus, I returned to the car and checked my phone for messages. No Tim. Perfect. I could run 1 more mile and get my esteemed 10 miler done without Tim waiting for me. I carry my phone in this thing called the tune belt. It works quite well, but the pouch that holds the phone closes with Velcro. If the Velcro is not closed all the way the phone can fall out. We usually slap a pin through it, but I must have forgot. Clearly , I forgot. I ran my mile got back to the car and was looking forward to posting pics on Facebook when...gasp, the tune belt was empty. I began to retrace my steps, in reverse, asked race workers if they found the phone. I ran into Tim as I was searching. He helped me look. Just as I was about to give up I found the phone. Smashed. Figures I ran 9 out of 10 miles where cars couldn't go and where do I drop the phone? Figures.

Note to self: If running with the I phone listen to music off of it. That way if you drop the phone you will know immediately.

Luckily, I was due for an upgrade and more luckily I would get a chance to for another photo-run session on Sunday.

We replaced the phone, I am officially being accused of purposely destroying the phone so I could get one with a video recorder.  Tim checked in for the race and we headed down to the water for Tim's warm up. We both learned if racing in cold water it is better to get used to the water temp prior to race day. The Internet said the water was 53 degrees.

 I appointed myself as coach/ manager/ nagging wife and waited for Tim to beg to come out of the water early. He denied me of this opportunity to be smug by swimming like a fish quickly out of my vision. When he exited the water we noted one problem, the arm pits of his wetsuit had eroded. Not a lot we could do at that point except try some duct tape. 

We headed over to Pleasanton to Tim's parents house. We really enjoyed the visit and were spoiled completely by Bruce and Cindy's hospitality. I award the food preparations  a Zagat one star or is it a Michelin one star? Oh well you get the point. 

Saturday Tim went for a shake the legs out run with Bruce and I. Then peeled off as Bruce and I continued on. Thanks to Bruce, I invested some more miles in the mileage bank. Good run, good company. In the afternoon, Cindy and I headed to the fabric store and picked out material for the quilt she is making for her first granddaughter.  Wow, quilting is quite an art, and I don't know how Cindy can fit in all she does. You see she teaches full time, works out and is incredibly fit, writes children's books (that get published), and she makes incredible birthday cakes from scratch. Must be she has a bit of the "Super Mom Gene". 

Gramps came over for dinner and soon we were off to bed. 

Sunday morning we woke up to rain. Rain, rain, go away, and it did for the most part. 

T1: Not racing was strange. I made myself useful by backseat driving picking out Tim's transition spot and telling him to go for a warm up run. 

The bike... 19 miles. He said was fun but it was a bit wet and slippery. Coupled with the inability to warm up after the "horrid" swim he didn't feel like he really was able to ride as fast as possible. Good thing...there is always next time and the run.

Meanwhile I was out on the run course. I had to take my photos quick so I would be gone by the time the racers came through and so I could see Tim finish the bike. 

The views from the run course were sweet. 

Seriously, who really wants to pound pavement?

Not I said the fly!
The course was actually quite perfect for the pregnant lady, which is a surprise considering it was Xterra. There were two scrambly sections and the sections near the bluff were very gusty but all in all the course was flat. Not as fast as a course on pavement, but for Xterra fast and relatively easy. 

 Indeed I enjoyed the course.

Convenient trail markers for the non racer.

True Xterra Terrain: Runnable for the X athlete. Walking is permissible for the preggers. 

Finished with my own run in time to see leading lady and local San Diegan, Lesley Patterson on her way to victory. 1st female pro! Yee Haw. 

I was too slow to catch Tim coming off the bike, but I ran as fast as I could to hot corner and caught a glimpse of Tim heading out to the run course. 

Tim was off with no wasted time. Despite not having the swim or ride he was hoping for he did good work on the run. 42 minutes for a cross country 10K. I'd take it without complaint. 

3 cheers to Jess, also from San Diego, showing good form in her rookie pro season. 

Tim showing pain, but at least not fear :)

Thanks for wrapping it up before it got too rainy and nice work. 

It's ok if my race reports by proxy aren't very good. I'll return to race ASAP. 


Besides friends, family, and the whole swim, bike, run situation here are a few of my favorite things.


The Salad Spinner

 Who wants soggy lettuce?
Besides I like the act of winding up and spinning it.


Naked fruit juice:

and that Costco has it for a fraction of the price.
Apparently the bulk size is not a problem for me :)

Nothing better than a cold glass of Naked juice after a hot run!


My garden:


Bugs who eat holes in my basil:

My tomatoes:

 not pictured my mint.

Warning you bugs. This is war!  

Any suggestions on how to eradicate these little tiny black bugs in a non toxic, semi organic manner?

I tried the dish soap and garlic but the bugs laughed in the face of my home remedy. 

Don't Be Afraid: This Is What You Were Born To Do.

Sometimes I stumble upon something inspiring and it's too good to keep to myself. Recently Kara Goucher was on the cover of "The Competitor Magazine" On it she was wearing a necklace I didn't notice until I read about it on her blog. On the the front it says "I am not afraid" 

On the back it say "This is what you were born to do"

On a personal note I could write a whole blog on why I respect idolize Kara Goucher and Paula Radcliffe. They took time out of what I believe to be one of the most fragile and passion filled careers to have children and how I think it's really cool that Paula has an anti G treadmill in her daughters playroom. I would only ever say anything negative about that if I was jealous, like in the event I asked my husband to build me, I mean our future daughter an elaborate playhouse big enough to house my treadmill and maybe a trampoline and some other fun stuff and he told me to get real. I'll stop there because that whole subject pertains to the place I am in and what I read applies to a whole lot of people I know in various arenas.

"I believe that life should be about living your passions—doing what you were born to do. But chasing your dreams is hard. No matter who you are or what your passion is, trying to do something as well as you can possibly do it is challenging, and with challenges comes fear.
As a runner, I deal with fear almost daily. To prevent fear from defeating me, I have to fight back against it in my mind. Reminding myself that I am doing what I was born to do—that, win or lose, embracing the challenge is still worthwhile—is one way I do that."

For what it's worth I have plenty of friends who are very successful, mostly in sport but some in other areas. They work extremely hard and organize their lives so when their passion is put to the test they can execute to their potential. Along the way, when they do the work they often are knocked for their efforts. They really are victimized by the "haters" for their success.

Sidebar: By the way, these friends of mine are not braggers. They never tout their times, finishing results, or training regimes. They may share information but they don't do things like wave their hardware around and say "Ooh don't you what this" There are those people, I'll leave them out as they don't fall into my category of "inspiring".

If they train hard and execute well, people say they are selfish because they spent time training. When they train hard and their execution comes up short they are assumed to be ungrateful and selfish. For example:  When the person who has raced 5 half marathons at 1h 32 minutes races a 1h 35 minutes s/he expresses disappointment because they trained for a 1h 29 minute finish.  With a 1/2 marathon PR of  1:40 it's really easy for me to be jealous and say they should be happy. I could start slamming their lifestyle choices right and left. I could forget to acknowledge the personal sacrifices they made, their organization and prioritization, and their willingness to dig deep through pain and to take chances. I try not to sink to that level as it is unfair and in the end it will only ever promote me to be less than I can be. I admit I have had moments where I sink, sank, sunk to this level, a  private pity party for me. For the most part I don't. Objectively seeing some of my friends go through this I am going to try even harder to refrain from making snide remarks to others that are fueled by my own jealousy.

 I realize it's all relative, on some level I have my own fan club of "haters" jumping up and down at the thought of me failing and well to err is human. I am blond. I smile, I laugh, and yes sometimes it is because I don't know what is going on. However, there are moments in conversation, when I too have been slammed sideways and I knew exactly what was going on.  For Example  "It's good you had a good race at Ironman Arizona because you will never go that fast again. You really went faster than you were capable". I didn't disagree because I believed in what was said it was because I was aware of where the comment came from. I think that why the haters get away with those comments, they are unaware anybody has them figured out.

So to all those who inspire me ... I know you have "haters" who are trying really hard to plant  the seed of doubt. I selfishly ask of you to never give up, to keep living your passion, and keep chasing your dreams. 

And when race day comes I encourage you to go as fast as you can and ....

 "Don't Be Afraid:This Is What You Were Born To Do.

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to my mom, my mother in law, and all the mom's out there. Thank you for your love, support, kindness, and sacrifices. I'm not so bold as to declare myself a member of the club just yet or to join in the celebration but I admit the card above really makes me smile. In case your wondering, I will be celebrating Mother's day in the same manner I celebrated Nurse's Day: working. Speaking of work. I learned, from one of my patients who got drunk, bonked his head and had a small brain bleed or bruise to the brain but mostly was obnoxious, a really mean joke to play on a pregnant nurse is to throw your chap stick on the floor under your bed. Repetitively. Of course the patient was on bed rest for his head injury so guess who had to fetch the chap stick...... Moving on. 

Now that we are past the half way point Tim and I are starting to think about what we actually need to take care of an infant and care for a child. 

 Isn't it obvious we have everything we need!

Currently that is our only piece of baby gear minus a onesie from the San Diego Zoo from Grandma N and a few hats I knitted myself on the way to Switzerland. 

Back to the backpack. Tim didn't want me to get any baby gear until month 7 initially. You know the whole cart before the horse. However, he made an exception for the REI used gear sale. My backpack is actually a "used once, didn't like" return and sold for 1/3 the retail price. 

Although it was quite a score, it was sort of like the third place podium finish as I went to the sale in hopes of purchasing a BOB running stroller. Turns out like any race you need to respect it and prepare appropriately. I arrived casually at 8:00 a.m. when the sale started. Silly me, if you want a single BOB you need to camp in the parking lot. Silly me again, there were a few double BOB's for 1/2 the retail price left. I thought a double BOB would be silly for me to buy. As my mother reminded me, I could have just put a doll in the other side, or some groceries. After all it would be a better workout.

I must thank my sister in law Val, for recommending the book below. It's basically a consumer report for all kinds of baby gear. I recommend reading it entirely before you go to Babies R Us and marking the pages that grade the gear. 

Elizabeth braved Babies R Us with me this week. It was the first time I entered a store such as that and my first exposure to a lot of that stuff. Did I mention we both bonked? Two girls who once rode 2X GWL with a 10 mile trail run off the bike bonked at Babies R Us. Yup, that about describes it. So anyway I am learning lots of stuff. Most of it is annoying or maybe I'm just hormonal but here goes. What is safe today, will be recalled tomorrow. If you are looking for a crib that is just a crib good luck. If you are looking for a crib that converts into a convertible corvette, you may be in luck. Also if a manufacturer sells a crib at Babies R Us under one name, it' sure to be sold at a furniture store under another, and Wal Mart under a third. Overwhelmed yet? Also when the people at the store tell you the stiffness of an infants mattress affects "bone development" the orthopaedic surgeon will disagree. Seems nothing is simple.

Except maybe running:

It's pretty simple. I'm getting a bit slower, but I can run "far" when I run at a relaxed pace close to 10 min/miles. I can run faster when chatting with Julie but we usually run shorter. Her recovery is my "tempo" pace. I am thankful for that as I might just give the chap stick thrower another head bonk if not for the release of running.