Custom Countdowns & MySpace Layouts

Custom Countdowns & MySpace Layouts

Thursday, December 18, 2008


I'm going to Lexington to pick up my new bike tomorrow! I ordered it for my bday back in August so it seems like I've been waiting for absolutely ever! I had to order it from Pedal the Planet in Lexington since nobody in Louisville carries this line of Specialized bikes. They have been so patient with me since I've called a ton of times since August....I may have bugged them just a little:) Anyway, they sent me this "teaser" pic today. Can you say, "Excited?" I'm sure it must be the most beautiful bike in the world and we all know it's all about how you look!

Sunday, December 14, 2008


In preparation for the 2009 Ironmen - I was reviewing this past seasons' log (just to remind myself of what's in store). This is a summary of the past years' numbers...

Month's trained - 12
Total Hours - 723
Bike Miles - 4,924
Run Miles - 963
Swim Miles - 172
Centuries - 16

Some more numbers...

According to calculations, all that biking, running & swimming added up to approximately 288,177 calories burned. Now, assuming that I maintained my pre-training caloric intak
e, I would have lost about 82 pounds with all that training. However, I only lost 15 pounds:( That only accounts for 52,500 calories. Therefore, somehow, I ate an extra 235,677 calories over the course of the last year. Hmmmmm...that's an extra 645 calories per day. Since I needed about 2000 calories per day to maintain my weight with moderate exercise, I guess I must have eaten around 2700 calories per day during my training....I'm apparently not working hard enough since Michael Phelps gets to eat 8,000...

If you're wondering how a girl eats all those calories...I ate about 35 40oz jars
of Jif Smooth peanut butter - that counted for 230,533 calories. I think I single handedly kept the peanut farmers in business last year. All those jars of peanut butter cost about $260. Also, with all that peanut butter I ate about 1,200 mini whole-wheat bagels for a whopping 120,000 calories. If I'm starting to look round, with a whole in the middle - you know why. I also used about 500 lemons for my hot tea that I had several times a day & went through about 1000 bags of Earl Grey Tea.
I'm hoping to add maybe another food group to my menu this year - we'll see...Actually, I did have one other food group that I ate last year - GU - I think it's kind of like the athlete's version of Spam. Nobody really knows what's in it but it somehow gets the job done. I have absolutely no idea how my GU's I ate but if you assume I ate nothing but peanut butter, bagels, & GU - I would have eaten about 6,400 of them. I'm pretty sure that I didn't eat that many, so somehow, I must have squeezed something else in...I just don't remember what it was.

Anyway, enough of my random musings about calories, miles & food....I think I'll go eat some more peanut butter with bagels.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Muncie Endurathon

Muncie was another half that I really didn't want to do. Although I had signed up early, as the race approached I was beginning to feel like all I did was taper for races, compete in races & recover from races. Panic was beginning to set in as I was worried that I might not be appropriately prepared for the full IM in August. After expressing my concerns to Coach Monica, she agreed to exclude the taper/recover period from this race gyration & just put it on my schedule as another workout. With my worries relieved, I soon found myself on my way to Muncie.

This trip started out with a fight with my husband. He & I had agreed upon what time I would leave Friday but as the time approached, he kept finding all these things he had to do that prevented me from leaving. We both kept pushing & when I finally walked out the door, totally stressed out, it wasn't on the best of terms. Wh
at a great start to the weekend! Once in the car, I started to unwind listening to some of my favorite tunes on my Ipod & the trip passed quickly. I had never been to Muncie & driving into town I was beginning to wonder where the hell I was. After passing tons of corn & bean fields, I made it into the outskirts of Muncie that seemed rundown & depressed. Pushing onward, I wound up at the convention center in the middle of a very small downtown. Packet pickup went smoothly and I waited for the athlete briefing while reading a magazine. The briefing was a little intense & the head ref was very serious & to the point. I was wondering if anyone ever made it through this race without penalties. It seemed like anything would get you one, including have a messy transition area.

After the meeting, I checked into my hotel, got all my stuff to my room & had a
nice dinner at IHOP. This was beginning to become a bit of an out of town tradition as I had chowed on their yummy chocolate pancakes at the Marine Corps Marathon, at the Kansas Half & now in Muncie. After dinner I went back to my room, read a bit & hit the sack. The standard 3 am alarm seemed as early as always the next morning.

After I was up, I had my requisite bagels with peanut butter & hot tea, got dressed, grabbed my "stuff" and headed out to my car to go - or not go. My car wouldn't start. WTF???? I tried repeatedly & actually got it to start once but it turned itself right back off. I clearly wouldn't be getting to the park (30 mins away) with this car. I called Kelly but she & Ben were both racing & didn't ha
ve room in their car for me & my bike. I called Monica but she didn't answer. I was beginning to panic when I got a hold of Monica. Saved!!! She totally saved my butt when she & her brother picked me up & got all of us to the race on time.

As you can imagine, I was a bit out of sorts by the time we got to the race start. We got there later than I usually do & there were lots of people & cars. All worked out okay, though, & I got my bike racked, my transition set up & actually had a bit of time to socialize. I even put in a call to my husband where he promised to take care of my car while I was racing.

Once I was ready to head to the start, a huge storm cloud (previously predicted to hit much later in the day) was heading our way. The race officials were moving up all the swim starts in an effort to get us all into & out of the water before the storm hit. They also let us know that, although they would not cancel the race due to weather, if the storm hit we went forward under our own risk. Next thing I knew, my wave w
as in the water & we were off. This was to be my first non-wetsuit race & I had decided to swim the entire way breastroke. The water was pretty choppy as the wind was picking up but I was holding my own. The course was a big horseshoe shape & on the bottom side, we got this great current pushing us along. Finally I hit the last leg of the swim & as I looked up the huge black clouds were right on top of us. I was pushing it as fast as I could but it was tough with the chop hitting me right in the face. About half way down the final stretch, the clouds opened up and the rain just poured down. Every time I came up for a breath it was stinging my face & making it impossible to see. Shortly after the rain started, I saw a huge bolt of lightning hit down right near us. Another bolt hit quickly after & of course the thunder was ear-shattering. It was really scary & I'm sure it contributed to my best ever swim time as I struggled to make the shore. I was so glad to be out of the water as I ran up to the transition area to grab my bike.

Several people decided to drop out after the swim but I decided to push on despite the pouring down rain. The bike times were a little slower than usual but as the course is straight and flat, navigation wasn't that big of a problem. The rain continued to pour down pretty much the entire bike but after the first hour or so, the lighting moved off into the distance. Needless to say, we were all soaked & there were virtually no fans out on the course. Despite all this, I had a great time out on the bike & I was silently thanking Ian S, the first person to ride with me in the rain. The bike seemed to fly by & before I knew it I was at the dismount line.

After I got off my bike, I had to take off my bike shoes since the transition area was so muddy & knew I wouldn't be able to run in my cleats. I somehow made my way through the quagmire & cleaned off my feet the best I could before putting on my wet shoes & he
ading out onto the run. Just as I was leaving transition, the rain was ending & the sun was coming out. Who would have thought it?

The run course in Muncie was the hilliest of the three halves I did this year. It was constantly moving up or
down & as soon as the sun came out, the air around us heated up. With the heat & humidity the run was definitely not fun. I pretty much kept to running on the few flats & all the downhills & I walked on all the uphills. The way out to the turnaround seemed to take forever, but once I was on the final stretch the rest of the race passed quickly. There were a couple of hills right before the finish line & then I was done! My best time so far...Swim 39:20, T1 4:11, Bike 2:53:20, T2 4:23, Run 2:13:46, Total 5:55:03. This was a great day & despite my initial impressions of Muncie, they put on a great race!

After it was over, Terry G, a fellow racer from Louisville, took me & my stuff to the car dealer that had my broken car & they gave me a loaner. I was able to get home with all my stuff only to return to Muncie a week later to pick up my newly repaired car (for a whopping $1800). I was so grateful to all the people that helped me out over what could have been a very stressful day & I'm hoping that when I return to Muncie next year, I won't have to make another trip to the auto repair shop!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Over the Rainbow

Although much more at ease after completing the Half IM at Taylorsville Lake, I still spent a significant portion of my week before Kansas arranging & rearranging all my "stuff" that I would need for my trip to Kansas. I'll admit that I packed way more than I needed but at least I didn't forget anything! I even took my own toaster & hot water kettle so I could have my bagels with peanut butter & hot tea the morning of the race.

Lawrence, KS turned out to be a surprisingly cool little town with my hotel placed in the middle of the artsy, eclectic downtown area. The expo was actually outside just a couple of blocks away from my hotel and although small, it had all the gear any tri-gee
k could want. It even had some Specialized Transition bikes on display that I spent a fair amount of time drooling over.

After picking up my packet, t-shirt, etc. at the expo, I took a drive out to view the course. All the literature I had read ahead of time warned that it wouldn't be flat like
people expected for Kansas & that turned out to be true. The course wasn't hilly like Louisville but it was either a continuous up or down that over the course of 56 miles amounted to about 2500 feet of climbing. I was a little concerned about the complete lack of shade out on the course and the possibility of high wind but otherwise all looked good for race day.

After driving the course I checked out the transition, swim & run areas back at the
park. Because of all the rain in KS, the lake was very high with water actually spilling over the top of the dam. This created some strong currents that I thought would be interesting on race morning. They also had to move the transition area due to flooding which made for slightly less than ideal conditions. When we exited the water we would have to run on sharp rocks to get to our bikes....I was hoping they would cover this but they didn't. Made for some ouchie feet on race day.

Once I had checked out the course, I spent the rest of the weekend just hanging out until I had to check my bike on Saturday. This was a completely different experience
than Taylorsville. While there were only about 100 people at Taylorsville, we had closer to 1500 in Kansas & it seemed that everyone had better "stuff" than me....While I love my bike, it's hard not to get a little bike envy when surrounded by hundreds of people with $5000+ bikes with disk wheels, aero helmets & all kinds of other cool things. Oh well...anyway, took a quick test ride on my bike, a dip in the lake to check out the water temp & currents & got my bike checked. Now all I had to do was wait for race morning.

3 am came really early on Sunday morning. After chowing down on my bagels & tea, I got dressed and headed out in the dark for the race start (about 30 mins from the hotel)
. Lesson learned in this race - take a light to the race start as it's really, really dark at 5 am in the middle of nowhere! I schlepped all my gear down to the transition area, got body marked then arranged all my things around my bike in what I hoped would be an easy, intuitive setup. I got done with all that pretty quickly so got to spend the next 1:30 watching everyone else get ready & fretting over whether I should wear a wetsuit or not. In the end, I pulled on the wetsuit right before lining up with my age group & before I knew it, we were in the water.

Right off the bat I knew this race was a whole different animal than Taylorsville. Gone
was the easy camaraderie that seemed prevalent among the competitors. These people were serious! Lots of kicking, bumping & stuff in the water so I just tried to stay off to the right of the main pack. About a third of the way into the swim I really wished I hadn't worn my wetsuit as I was getting really hot. Oh well - I sucked it up and just kept going. The swim seemed to go on & on - different than Taylorsville because it was just one loop. I was really glad to see the shore & although it felt like I'd never get there I was finally out of the water! Swim Split 51:36 - boo!

The run to transition was pretty long & once we were off the path from the lake we got to run on those ouchie rocks to get to our bikes. I remembered to make a stop in the porta-pot then grabbed my shoes, helmet, sunglasses, bike & kind of run-walked out to the mounting line. T1 - 5:07 - just ok.

Once I was on my bike I quickly settled into just getting comfortable with the race ahead.
There was lots of passing & bad bike handling skills but I made it up the hill from the lake & out onto the main road with no problems. The course is what they call the "Iron Cross" with 3 out & backs plus the road to/from the lake. The first out started with a wicked downhill followed by a long ascent with a little flat thrown in for fun. One guy apparently took that first downhill wrong & wiped out so badly he had to be airlifted out....On that first leg I really tried to relax as dozens and dozens of riders blew past me while I tried to remember my plan to take it easy on the first leg. We already had a wicked cross/headwind & I knew we were going to have a long day. This one guy blew past me with a disk wheel but then immediately slowed down so I passed him back. This happened a couple of times before his ego apparently got the better of him & he took off like a bat out of hell. The hills on all legs of this course were long but thanks to all our local hills, I seemed to be taking them better than most. It seemed that a lot of people just didn't believe the course description & were surprised that it wasn't flat. I tried to relax during the headwinds & take advantage of the tailwinds. The best part of the ride was on the last stretch where I had known we would have a tailwind. I had reserved enough energy that I was feeling great & on the last big uphill I blew past the disk guy from the morning where he was obviously struggling. Next time he shouldn't let his ego get the best of him. I discovered that I love passing guys on the bike:) Bike Split 3:11:51 - yeah!

Once I was off my bike I moved through transition as quickly as I could to get out on the run course. T2 - 3:23 - not bad!

Although there had been no clouds in the sky & it was hot, I could see a big, black storm front heading our way. I started the run slowly but the closer the storm got the faster I tried to go. I was really afraid they would cancel the race. I made it through the 1st
half of the run pretty uneventfully. It was toasty out & I really liked the cold sponges. I didn't eat anything but was able to grab ice & coke at a couple of stops. The run wound it's way through the park's campgrounds & the crowds were great. Even folks who weren't there for the race were out cheering us on. I was probably 20% into the last loop of the run when the wind picked up like crazy, the sky turned black & the temperature dropped about 25 degrees. It was a little freaky but although we could see lightning out in the distance, the storm seemed to hold off. I kept plodding on expecting to be pulled off the course any moment because of the weather but they kept letting us go on. I was about 2 miles out from the finish, ready to do the last little loop that takes you past the finish line & back, when they told us we had to finish & run through the chute. I couldn't believe it! I was having a great run & the storm looked like it had blown over but they made us quit anyway. I was a little disgusted (as you can see from my picture) but other people were a lot more upset. For a lot of the racers, not only was this their first HIM but it was also their "A" race for the season. When I went back to pick up my bike the girl next to me was just sobbing about not being able to finish. I felt really bad for her. People were even more upset because the storm never really materialized. Anyway, Run Split - 1:50:23 for 11.1 miles with and Overall Race time of 6:02:20.

Although my race was cut about 2 miles short, I was really happy with my performance for the day. My swim could have been better but my bike was great & I was having a decent run. My nutrition on the bike was good but I need to continue to work on my run nutrition. I can barely seem to get anything down. I think having the storm looming over us helped me to get over my tired running legs & push through to pick up my pace. Quite honestly, my only real complaint of the day was how they posted the final standings. Because some people were only on their first loop of the run when they got pulled & others were on their second, it totally messed up the standings. The competitive side of me has a real problem with people who didn't do as well as me being posted above me in the rankings - I had only 2 miles left but they had about 7 so it looks like they had better runs.....Oh well, there's really nothing I can do about it so I'll just be happy with my race & go from here. Overall - Kansas was a great race!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Catching Up Part 1

This post is to begin catching you up on what happened over the summer between my May post & the IM at the end of August. The first thing of real significance was my first triathlon ever on May 17th at Taylorsville Lake.

I spent several weeks leading up to this race in a perpetual state of inde
cision. I kind of wanted to get a tri under my belt but I wasn't certain I was ready and, quite honestly, I was afraid that I would embarrass myself & quite possibly come in last. Coach Monica thought I should do it, Kelly & Aimee were doing it, Brian thought I should go - the pressure was unrelenting - I gave in.

Race morning I was so nervous I thought I'd be sick. I'd packed & repacked everything I could think of the night before & had gotten everything into
my car so all I had to do was get up, eat my bagels with peanut butter, throw on my tri suit & go. Brian had offered to be my fan club so I picked him up on the way & before I knew it I was there.

When we go
t there I quickly got my bike ready, my transition set up & my wetsuit on. Kelly, Aimee & I made our way to the water for a quick (and unbelievably cold) dip & next thing I knew we were lining up to start.

Let me start by saying that the water in Taylorsville Lake was absolutely disgusting. In addition to being only one step above freezing, the was so much silt & debris in the water that it was like putting your face in a mudpuddle - gross! I was one of the lucky ones who didn't have a panic attack in the water but I definitely didn't enjoy the swim. It was a 2x out & back course & lots of people were going off course & crossing over the bouys. At one point, I was hit head-on by some guy who had crossed over to my Although I was slow, I wasn't the last person out of the water - which was quite a relief & I made my way up the boat ramp & onto my bike. One thing I learned in this race - go to the bathroom before getting on the bike. I spent the entire bike ride having to go pee - & no, I didn't pee on my bike.

I had practiced the bike course the week before so I
knew what to expect & was pleasantly surprised when I was able to maintain a much higher than expected mph. During my trial run, I averaged just over 15 mph but during the race I was >17. It was great & I really enjoyed the ride - which is more than I can say about the run.

After I made it through transition & out onto the run course the misery of the day started. The run course is a 3x out & back in the full-sun with the out being uphill & the back being downhill. Normally this wouldn't be so bad but on this day, when we should have been getting the relief of going downhill we were heading into an incredibly strong headwind. It wasn't long before I was negotiating with myself for every step forward. I would try to make myself run to signs, poles, rocks, whatever just to keep moving forward faster. However, the longer I was out there, the more I walked. I walked fast but still walked. The only time I was really strong on the run was the last 1/2 mile when the finish was in sight! The good news, though, was that everybody was suffering on the unexpectedly hot & windy day & my finish time was much better than I expected.

When the race was over, I was really glad I had done it. All of my times were better than I expected & I didn't come in last! My splits were as follows:

Swim - 51:50
T1 - 5:27
Bike - 3:10:02

T2 - 3:21
Run 2:22:26
Total Time - 6:33:08

Overall, a really great start to my triathlon "career".

A special thanks to Ben Wilson for all the photos he took of the day!


IM pics courtesy of my bud Murphy who ended up hanging out at the race pretty much all day! Thanks Murph - You may not have much but you have my back:) The first pic is of me & Kelly at the finish line. The 2nd is of Murphy high-fiving me by the finish line (check out his cool hat!) The last is of part of my family hanging out at the finish wearing their extra cool Team Hatton shirts!

Friday, October 31, 2008


So I'm a total loser who hasn't posted to my blog since May. I could lie & say that I was so busy with my training that I just couldn't fit it in. However, in reality, every time I sat down to post a blog it took me so long to write & re-write my thoughts that it just didn't get done. From now on, I'm going to make an effort to blog more regularly but may not be quite so articulately correct - we'll see how it goes.

In the meantime - until I get my very late & overdue IM Louisville race report posted, enjoy this video that Kelly's husband Ben put together of the race. Although, obviously, Kelly is the main attraction, I have some bit parts as well!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Fashion Statement

So it seems like the closer I get to the Ironman, the less I wear my "real" clothes and the more time I spend in my old race t-shirts, sweats & Ugg boots (or Birkenstocks). I've pretty much convinced myself that comfy is more important to me these days than nice clothes, & besides, I'm just going to be working out again within the next few hours, so what's the point anyway?

Most of the time I don't really care a whole lot about this, but every now & then I look in my closet with something akin to regret as I gaze wistfully at all my "real" clothes that I just quite honestly don't have the time to wear anymore.

Well, for all of you who have had the misfortune of hanging out with me for the last year or so as I have descended into my slovenly, non-fashion pit, I wanted to let you know that I really still do know how to dress up like a grown-up who does anything other than exercise all the time. I still remember how to put on makeup, jewelry & normal shoes & on occasion, even go around without the classic goggle eyes I seem to be sporting most of the time these days. So check it out ---> Went to the Oaks on Friday & actually got to play dress up for a few hours. My hair was clean & didn't smell like chlorine, I had a nice new pedicure that wasn't chipped from the pool water & the salon lady even got rid of all the blister remnants from running the Mini. I wore undergarments under my clothes (as opposed to what I usually don't wear under my bike & running shorts) & didn't even have to put chamois butter or body glide on any part of my body. It was actually pretty nice for a change, but as soon as it was over, this newer, cleaner version of me was gone & I'm back to t-shirts, comfy shoes & eau de chlorine! Maybe the more fashionable version of me will make another appearance after Labor Day.