Two Saturdays ago, we got rained out in Key Biscayne. This past Saturday, when my team was enjoying clear skies and water as flat as glass, I was unable to be at training because I was with my dear friend Lauren in Nashville, TN visiting our high school buddies, Meghan and Caitlin.

Here is my team on the beautiful morning…

Photo Cred: Michelle Wong (You can check out her blog here: https://michellehearts.wordpress.com/)

Meanwhile, we were enjoying the sights of Nashville!

Lauren and I on the plane on the way there.  Posing with our latest book club read!

Celebrating Bastille Day (obviously)

All the ladies with a little Jack on the Rocks (rocks not pictured thanks to the interesting tour guide)

Stopped at a bike shop!  Drank multiple Fat Tire’s! That must count as something towards my training.

longest bike ride yet!

I drove up to Coral Springs a couple weeks ago at 5 am to ride with my good friend (and Paris sister) Kellie on my longest bike ride yet.  We rode just over an hour and, despite a downpour at the end (thanks, Florida summer), I felt really good and was glad I made it up there to ride with her.  I could not do that kind of time on my own on the bike yet, and the warm towel and Starbuck’s afterward makes it all worth it.  :)

Sweet helmet hair!

Ahhh, the inevitable “I haven’t updated in so long” post…

So rather than appoligize and give lame excuses, here are my times and a quick photo summary of my FIRST TRIATHLON on the 4th of July (as well as the rest of my 4th!)

Total Time: 01:07:10.60
Swim Time: 8:32
Bike Time: 32:52
Run Time: 22:12

Overall Place: 180 out of 409

Gender Place: 41 out of 150

Category (Age group) Place: 4 out of 14

Finishing my first open water swim!

running portion!  (Trying to catch everyone who passed me on the bike)

Awards ceremony- 4th place in 26-30 age group.

Then the Independece celebrating began…

Beef and shrimp kabobs and mac and cheese!

Self explanatory.

Yummy desserts a la Jessica Colavecchio.

USA <3 BFFs

momdressedmethismorning:

This is beyond amazing.  50m, outdoor, infinity on the ocean….

momdressedmethismorning:

This is beyond amazing.  50m, outdoor, infinity on the ocean….

(Source: airows)

back to the grind

After a weekend off of triathlon training (unless you count the triathlon of dancing, drinking, and eating fish in Key West…which you should because we worked hard at it), I went back to practice this past Saturday actually ready to bike, run, and swim!  We started our Saturday “brick” sessions, which means we bike, run, bike, run…followed by swimming!  It went surprisingly well and I’m getting more and more confidant getting on and off my bike.

Following training, we had an excellent breakfast cooked by our coach Keith. 

                                                      Our team mascot, Miawashi, chowing down!

My very very awesome coach, Diane, also asked me if I would share in the “mission moment.”  This is where one person (on the team or someone the team is honoring) speaks about their connection to blood cancers and helps to remind us why we do what we do each week.  So, I got to share all about aunt Catherine.  I got to tell about her bravery, before and after diagnosis. In Diane’s recap of my speech, she reiterated what I said about Catherine, “She did not show her fear of the disease, therefore those around her felt her sense of peace.”  I feel that this sums it up perfectly.  Thanks so much Diane for letting me share my story!

                              Me with our Mission Board!

Don’t forget to check out and pass on my fundraising page. :)

Oh…and some proof that I did bike while I was away on vacay…

This Friday, I will be practicing the fine art of biking and drinking beers once again at the Critical Mass bike ride in Fort Lauderdale with my homies and lots of strangers…come join!

Rocky road.

Unfortunatly, I mean that very literally, and I’m not referring to the ice cream (remember when I said I’m not cheesy…I lied). 

I have been riding my bike to the pool when I go to swim.  It’s about 2 miles from my house and gives me a chance to ride down the road and learn how to clip in and out of my bike pedals at intersections (yes, it’s a work in progress).  Yesterday, on my way there, in an attempt to avoid a speed bump, I went onto a really rocky path before continuing back on the main road. 

The result was my first flat tire!  So I did what any grown up who is learning lots of new things about riding a triathlon bike would do: I changed my shoes, walked my bike to a safe place, and…

called my mom! And, yes, she came and picked me up after my swim.

Therefore, yesterday’s life lesson: when you are faced with a speed bump in the road, don’t try to avoid it…just take that shit head on, because the path to avoid it is probably more work than just facing the obstacle in the first place. (Hey, if I’m gonna go cheesy, I might as well go all the way with it.)

Today’s life lesson: how to fix a flat tire.

Larger than Life

When I wrote about my first day of training, I mentioned the different people on my team and their different reasons for being a part of Team in Training.  If you haven’t had the joy of hearing me rave about TNT, you can ask me about it or check out their website: http://www.teamintraining.org/.  To make it short, they are a national organization which trains people to complete endurance events while raising money for blood cancer research and support. 

Since I know some of you are losing sleep over why I joined Team In Training, and since I am a HUGE fan of sleep, I wanted to let you all know my reasons for continuing to be a part of TNT…

1. My aunt, Catherine, passed away from leukemia in December 2009 at 45 and she was and still is a huge inspiration.  She brought my grandmother a dildo on Christmas, let my brother drive my car when he was only 12 years old, saved hundreds of animals, fostered children with MS, bought me my first thong bikini, asked my college boyfriend if he wanted to spend the night with her (before he was my bf), threw some great parties, traveled the world, and she was truly a person who constantly did things that were bigger than herself.

2. I ran cross country and track in high school and college and when Catherine got sick, I wanted to feel like I was doing something.  Racing and raising money to help other blood cancer patients is what I realized I could be doing with my “talents.”  With TNT, I have trained for and completed the VA Beach 1/2 marathon, the Paris Marathon (and qualified for Boston!), and am now going into uncharted territory with this triathlon.

3. This season, I will also be running in memory of my friend Lauren’s dad, Mel Greene.  Mel lost his fight against multiple myeloma, also a blood cancer that LLS supports. Lauren and I have been friends since 5th grade, and when I met Mel he was in remission.  Mel was great at telling “dad jokes,” took his car washing very seriously, and hated being called “Smell”.  To Mel, I was a ”vestal virgin” (a concept that is, for some reason, very funny to Lauren and her mom, Eve) and I am very proud to be “tri-ing” in his memory.

4. As Catherine taught me, it is important for a person to be part of something big. something real. something important. something bigger than themselves.  You can check out my personal fundrasing page here: http://pages.teamintraining.org/sfl/miamiman11/aandress and see pictures of Catherine and Mel.

I highly encourage everyone to find something larger than themselves that they can be a part of and take pride in.  I’m not a cheesy person, so I’m not going to leave you with some overused quote about getting involved and making a difference.  Everyone knows “the starfish story” (if not…do yourself a favor).  But, I will say that I think it does a soul good.  Try it out.

Whoever wants to buy me this&#8230;I&#8217;ll &lt;3 you lots!

Whoever wants to buy me this…I’ll <3 you lots!

That list above = easy, dumb &#8220;humor&#8221;; this lady&#8217;s comments to follow = hilarious
bikeladiesunite:

So these really silly sorts of lists are nothing new, but WHY DID YOU HAVE TO MAKE ONE ABOUT BIKES? Here is why my bike is better than whomever wrote this:
- My bike thinks gender stereotypes about sex are played out- My bike doesn’t find domestic abuse particularly funny- My bike just generally has a better sense of humor- My bike never equates people with objects- My bike is not a sexist jerk
I’m also fairly sure my bike is more attractive and better at dinner parties, but such extrapolations are pure guesswork.

That list above = easy, dumb “humor”; this lady’s comments to follow = hilarious

bikeladiesunite:

So these really silly sorts of lists are nothing new, but WHY DID YOU HAVE TO MAKE ONE ABOUT BIKES? Here is why my bike is better than whomever wrote this:

- My bike thinks gender stereotypes about sex are played out
- My bike doesn’t find domestic abuse particularly funny
- My bike just generally has a better sense of humor
- My bike never equates people with objects
- My bike is not a sexist jerk

I’m also fairly sure my bike is more attractive and better at dinner parties, but such extrapolations are pure guesswork.