Sunday, August 31, 2008

Kona or Bust...

let's just say I busted...

When I could run I ran, when I could walk fast I walked VERY fast, but when I couldn't move... I walked so slow it looked like a bride going down the aisle on her wedding day.

On a more serious note...
The swim was a normal swim, a little action under water, but nothing too nuts. I was super conservative on my swim. I wanted to set myself up for a good ride so I just stayed mellow the whole swim, outta battles, let those that battle and race the swim do their thing... I just enjoyed it. I actually loved it. It was the first long swim of my life where I didn't think 2 or 3 times if I was almost done...

The bike was a good one too. I stayed in my zone the whole ride... just followed my HR and my nutrition. In fact it was the first ride where I got down ALL my calories, all of them... I even built into it. AND when the wind and heat showed up I liked it better & pretended to be at home on the Kona Coast. I was seriously thinking today was going to be a great day because I swam smart and easy, rode in my zones, no nutrition issues on the bike...

BUT then I jumped off the bike and it felt like I just finished Thanksgiving dinner. I was full. I figured if I start out easy it would settle and all would be fine. So I started easy, built into the first couple miles but it never went away. Then it all came up, the turkey dinner wanted out! AND when you are leading an Ironman you get your own bike escort and A TV camera in your face... so they saw all the fun! I asked them to please stop filming it, I would run and puke while running, it was ugly! BUT the most hilarious part was when my bike escort turned back to watch the vomit and he hit a curb and went over his handle bars crashing into the street. I laughed so hard... I knew then the run was going to be drama. It was so funny... he was fine, I was fine, everyone smiled...

So about 1/2 way into the run, after what I thought was all my food, I put in more, lots more, because I wanted to stay fueled... that was when I pretty much busted. My mind was willing but my body was not wanting to cooperate. I had a lot of fun though... I totally appreciate all the cheers and support and love and people that took turns walking with me. I really had to finish...and I did, even though it took ALL DAY! I don't think it was the heat or humidity... I am used to it, I think I need to learn to run with a full gut...

My uncle told me this story today about being a Florida boy that wanted to learn to ski. He went to the snow and loved it so so so much. He fell nearly every time when he started out... but his passion to ski was so big he kept getting back up... and before long he was a skier...

hmm, I thought about that and how my friend Mclain teases me about being a Florida girl who fell of her surf board and landed on a bike. I think getting started in triathlon is similar to my uncle starting skiing... I keep falling but I love it so much and my passion for it is so big I have to keep getting up... I am not bummed about today... not even sad, definitely not disappointed (I finished!).

Not really sure what will be next for me... I have a couple ideas...

Congratulations to everyone that made it through Ironman Kentucky! We did it! And a huge thank you to my family and friends for being out on the course. AND a big thank you to Hillary Biscay for all the support (she knows she is my favorite pro) and she was so willing to keep me moving forward and let this rookie pick her brain...

Cheers everyone... time for BED!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

High-Fives all around!


Feeling GREAT! I am not sure I have ever felt this good on the "day before". Maybe my little chat with Coach Lance fired me up! Or maybe having a second chance in one week is just too much fun, or perhaps having all my Florida family here. OR maybe meeting so so so many cool people has me just "enjoying" prerace rather than the usual prerace nerves.

I stole this photo from Coach Dan... it says it all! Forgive me if you are a coffee lover...


And I finally swam! Coach Paul let me skip the first swim day and hit the pool, but today he made me jump in... it looks BEAUTIFUL when you look out over the bridge, in fact it is awesome to have an opportunity to swim in the Ohio River! That might be my favorite thing about triathlon, getting to travel and race in such unique places.





Nice!? It wasn't nearly as bad as all the jokes and rumors. If you jump over the "stuff" you get some clean water. It is SO SO SO warm, bath water! For sure no wet suits (phewwwww)! But you can't see the bottom or any feet in front. Thankfully I have clear goggles so if I end up solo I can see where I am going! It smelt like fish in there... Hawaii spoiled me for sure!

And that's it... tomorrow is race day! BEST to everyone racing. Have some fun & enjoy the day! No stopping on the run (there are loads of tempting places to stop on the 26.2 mile run). I noticed a couple great chicken places, 3 "Adult" shops, a handful of coffee places, a couple haunted houses, Indiana, and 4 retirement centers... Time to get lucky!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Follow Your Plan...

One of my 3 doctors in the med tent at IMC... She was the nice one that felt bad for disqualifying me...

In the course of 5 days I have learned more about triathlon than I have in the 3-4 years I have been racing it. Perhaps it takes putting all your hope and energy in one spot, or sacrifice for one moment, or completely enduring the unexpected to really learn.

I am no stranger to losing. To pain. To sacrifice. To fear. To getting your hopes up just to see them flop. But disappointment was something new. Something I had yet to really feel in my tri life. Maybe because I always try to see the "bright side" this emotion hasn't really happened to me. I didn't see anything bright at the end of IMC.

Yesterday I sat to chat with Coach Lance, he was the man that brought me to understand what I was feeling. He asked if I feel disappointed about IMC. I did but didn't know it until he said that word. Until he said it I never even considered that a feeling in my life. I was disappointed. Disappointed in myself and disappointed for feeling I had failed my coach for not sticking to the plan he worked up for me...

After that we moved on... we found a way to not let it happen again... to follow my plan. If you stay on your course, on your plan, and do your thing then you set yourself up to succeed. Maybe succeeding is winning, or getting a Kona slot, or running a personal best. Maybe to follow your plan and just finish is to have success. I was disappointed because I let my plan for the race slip out the window...

After every race, the big and the small ones, coach Paul has me send him in my race reflections on the Friday following the race. That week is supposed to allow me time to reflect while the emotions have had time to "settle". Today I sent him my reflection...and I moved on...

Now my head and heart are clear, my mind is free from the past weekend's "disappointment". It is time to follow a new plan. And I got a good one. A real good one. Coach sent it and the word "fun" is on the list... I am about to have fun!

Come race day... Kona slot or not, I will be following my plan. And following it will get me to the finish line "successfully".

I am definitely in the mood for a little success...
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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Lucky Me...


I am in, THANK YOU to Janette Harshman for letting me in the race SO LATE! #2513, that's me! Since I entered so late I don't get a cool low number with the other pro women, fine by me... at least I get a number! (and it's not written with a permanent marker like they joked it would be)

Ironman Kentucky is off to a GREAT start! My room is SO much fun! It is a SUITE bigger than my home in Kona! I feel like Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman! My shoes & swim suits are all over the place just where I like to toss them AND NOBODY COMPLAINS!

In fact, Tila (my bike) gets her own bed...she is resting now, I told her it is okay that her wheels are still a little sore from Ironman Canada, she will be ready for Sunday!


Yesterday started off with a swim at the University (we aren't able to swim in the river yet, fine with me, you can't see the bottom if you looked for it!). Kate Monster and I had some good laughs as the pool is set up for swimming by speeds. The lane labeled "slow" had people sitting on the wall. The "medium" lane had a man that was literally swimming on top of the lane lines! He was all over them. And the "fast" lane had a woman swimming without a swim cap, hair all in the face, but at least she was moving.

The life guard asked if we were Ironmanner's. Yep. So he let Kate and I swim in the deep end!

AND my adventure at the grocery store was the BEST! Nobody knew what an Ironman was, "an Iron what!?!!". And they had no clue that it was coming to their neighborhood! I got all sorts of funny gestures and some very cool pick up lines:

  • pssss. psssssst. pssssttt. pst. psssssssssssssssssssssssssst.
  • mmmmm girl. Nice.
  • You work here, you are workin' it.
  • You wanna be my honey?
  • Whatcha doin' wit dem legs girl? mmmmm. girl.
Today Coach Mark, Katya, and I rode one loop of the double loop on the bike course. It is like no course I have ever ridden! I loved it.


We rode through rows of corn, pastures of horses, and leaves falling from trees. Through little towns, over little rolling hills, and next to barn after barn after barn. I really loved the course. The different views and constant little rollers really help the mind stay awake.

Check in was pretty fun too. IT IS SO EMPTY! Unlike any race I have ever been to, this one was so laid back. Everyone is so happy, so friendly, and just 'chill'. I hung out at the Lifesport booth for a while, told them I need some coaching :) That was fun messing with Coach Dan, Coach Lance, and Coach Mark. Then I hung out at the Zoot booth chatting with Ben about Rachel for 3 hours... we voted her the hottest girl on Earth!

AND now the fun begins! Remember I used to live in Florida? Well, looks like EVERYONE I know in Florida is coming up to see an Ironman! My family and a couple friends are on their way now! Thankfully Tila takes up a whole bed so I don't have to share my princess suite!

Alrighty... that's it in Kentucky. Eat the chicken, it's good here...

AND again, thank you to everyone that is being so cool about this crazy try #3. I appreciate YOU ALL more than you may ever know!

Thanks Steph for this photo... it is the last 2 miles of IMC bike... TOTAL motivation to FINISH IMKY!!



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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

It's like base ball...

My rookie season feels a lot like a baseball game! I am up to bat...

Ironman Japan: Strike one! (well, that one we can call a foul ball) I at least finished the race and got my Ironman PR. with a podium finish.

Ironman Canada: Strike two! That one feels like I swung pretty darn hard but it was only a bunt. The ball just barely went anywhere... swim/bike doesn't get me on base. Seriously, being disqualified is one of the most ridiculous things I have ever heard happening on a run course! I could have made it... I just needed one more minute to get my feet under me...

Ironman Kentucky: The pressure is on... 2 strikes... bases loaded...

This is hilarious if you ask me! I appreciate all the supportive emails reminding me that I have a super family at home, have had a nice season, and to throw in the towel... BUT NO WAY! Who quits a baseball game after only 2 strikes... WE GET 3!!

So... here I am on the way to Kentucky! The biggest mahalo of my short 7 month career in sport goes out to Johnson & Blanton for making this flight happen! (I would be hitchhiking down to Kentucky if not for you!) To Charlie at Trakkers for trying to pull strings to get me in the race and supporting me from the first day I got the pro card! To my amazing coach Paul who keeps my chin up TIME AFTER TIME and has given me some guts!! To my incredible hubby and son who are probably having a blast back in Kona without me! AND last but not least all my family and friends who just laugh with me about it all rather than laugh at me! I just LOVE you guys!!...

Okay... off to Kentucky! On a mission to score! ha ha ha... gettin' lucky in Kentucky!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

116.2 miles of Ironman Canada...

I really need a break from this darn blog thing. BUT as I sit and watch finishers from my hotel I decided I better respond to the 47 emails from my family and Kona friends all emailing to see if I am alive... rather than write 47 emails they can read this blog (that's why I started it right, to save the time of writing so many emails).

Here it goes... the swim was the usual, a bit of an underwater wrestling match. BUT I still enjoyed it. I am really liking to swim these days. T1 was pretty hilarious, I had one of my arm warmers on upside down- but I like to laugh so-good timing. The bike got off to a good start till mile 7 or 11 (forgive me, my calculating kilometers to miles is a little lousy at times)...anyways, my derailer had some issues, but I got it going and was feeling frisky...

At mile 20 or 22 (kilometer thing again) I had to rid the arm warmers because my circulation was getting cut off on the right arm from being upside down... back in action... I got stung by a bee, thankfully I am not allergic, I thought of Lori Bowden the year she was stung in Kona, and pressed on...

I was hanging onto 3-4th place and not even stressing because I knew the leaders (Heather W. and Belinda Granger already had their spots). THEN I got a flat. STILL did not panic. Just yesterday coach told me the story about the year Jillian Baker had 2 flats and still won! So I made the most of it... hit the bushes for a pee break (since I am REALLY bad at going on the bike), I drank and took salts, I was stretching... I even tried to fix it myself but it was too mechanically messed up for me.

SOooooo...19 minutes later I was back on the bike (after watching 5 girls pass me). I thought about Simon Whitfield's MAJOR guts in the Olympics and decided it was my turn to have some. AND WHAT do you know... Just in time for Yellow Lake! I rocked the climbs and I rode down the hills so fast I passed back 2 women! I hit 46mph (that is SO fast for me!!). I was riding like a bat out of hell (excuse my French). In fact I was riding with all my guts that I puked out all my guts. No nutrition for me. No nothing, just sheer time trialling... I was not letting my Kona slot slip away that easy. My face looked like a dog growling, about to bite somebody!

With about 2 miles to go Sara Gross and I nearly get hit by a car (I am sure she will write about it on her blog) trying to avoid it we had to swerve off the course and nearly into a turning vehicle going the other direction... Off the bike and my SRM said I only rode for about 5:06 minutes! Man that would be my PR if the 19 minute flat didn't make time flop to 5:25!

I am eternally optimistic... but I really wondered why in the world am I having so much adversity? I suppose lessons learned only make us better...

Okay, out on the run... I had 26.2 miles to go, was in 6th, 3 girls in front had slots, there is still hope for me!

I make the first turn to the first aid station and football tackle a poor volunteer handing me water... I have no clue what just happened. But they laid me in the grass for minute or 10. Then the medics showed and I said no!

I did not sacrifice family time, missing Kainoa, and all that hard work to not finish the race. AND I just don't quit. They let me start running again...

I hear this girl shout, "I read your blog", I smile and wave and I think that took all my energy, but it made me laugh. Aid station number 2, I made it, jogged the whole mile! And then I am not sure what happened. I laid down on the street for a minute... then I was in an ambulance with an oxygen mask, and on the way to the med tent.

A little rest later I told Dr. D I had to get going again... he made me have fluids, walk around, and do all his doctor things. However long later I told him I am at least walking the rest of the way, I am not DNF'ing or quiting. He told me I'm not, I am DQ'ed. I asked why? I didn't cheat, he said I am medically DQ'd so they aren't liable for my bum...

I asked if he will walk with me (we could even hold hands). He laughed, then said he is not in shape to walk 26 miles. I told him we only have 24 to go, I already did 2. Then I tried to convince the other man in the med tent (a racer) if he would walk with me, he asked if I was on drugs.

Needless to say, coach stole me from the medical cops & said we "might" have a plan... I will fill you in later...

I hope I can get "Lucky in Kentucky"...

To everyone that DID finish IMC... way to go! It is super fun watching you finish the race here from the balcony... To Allison Fitch, thank you for the hug prior to the swim start this morning, you are awesome! And to my teammates and Kona friends that raced... I am so glad your days were better than mine!

PS: MANY mahalos to my family, coach, supporters, and friends for all their support through this crazy rookie season of mine.

PSS: I told coach Paul racing in Canada just might not be my thing. My first race here I flat out and end up in a cop car, my second race I am lead off course on the bike (at least I get to finish), and my 3rd race here I end up Medically DQ'd... Of course I am kidding, I will be back for more!

PSSS: Congrats to Bryan Rhodes and Belinda Granger for the awesome wins! During Belinda's finish line speech she talked about how she never dreamed this would be her when she was an age grouper, and this was her 28th Ironman! So I am totally clinging to the hope that a little experience later I can be in her shoes!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Breathe. Hang on. Hold Tight...


Tomorrow is the big day. Every day before race day I just think about having my little baby (Kainoa pictured above) and whatever task is at hand all of a sudden loses any real fear...

Having Kainoa has given me strength beyond what it takes me to get through a long day of swim-bike-run. That said: I am ready.

The bike is checked, the bags are checked (after I packed and unpacked them 500 times of course!) And my little lunch chat with coach is done too.

Penticton is absolutely beautiful today! Hardly a cloud in the sky, gentle breeze, it has warmed up, and the little town is full of great people ready to race or support. It seems as if everyone is part of the Ironman Canada experience.

ALL the best to everyone racing tomorrow! And to Eileen & Katya & the those racing IM Louisville next weekend... enjoy tomorrow from your couch... your turn is next!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Almost race day...

Look what was in the Canada Tri mag! Not even kidding... Kainoa and me on the SAME PAGE as Lisa Bentley! How cool is that?! I have to find her for an autograph... Pretty funny how one of my most favorite triathletes ever in the world is now one of the gals I have to race against... Maybe it would look better if Kainoa asked for the autograph...

Check this out (can you tell I am VERY excited!). We get TWO choices to use for our race numbers! You can either race as your first name or last name! I have never had my name on my race number ever in my life! NOW I can choose to race as Bree or as Wee... ha ha! I think I will be Bree, but I kind of like Wee too...hmm, 2 more days to decide!

What a cool place Penticton is! Reminds me of Kona in SO many ways... small town, some of the most down-to-Earth people I have ever met, BEAUTIFUL, and totally laid back. Like Kona race week, everything is shut down. A giant peach is the meeting spot for anything social... This place KNOWS how to make a race happen!

SO... yesterdays ride down Yellow Lake wasn't too bad. Still not as easy as it looked, this is coming from the "Queen Chicken" of down hills. But it was incredible! Coach Dan came along to show me some lines and keep me company, you can tell he is Lucy Smith's brother- nothing they do is slow! Once to the bottom and I caught my breath Coach Paul drove us back to the top and we did it AGAIN. Nothing like "down hill repeats" on a disc wearing an aero helmet!

After that I got to meet Shawn at NUUN... I LOVE meeting my supporters and getting some "race day love". Seriously, him and Tracy are incredible people! AND GOOD LUCK SUNDAY TRACY!! Then to check in! LOVED it... I was totally going to wait in the long line of 5 million people like I aways do UNTIL I was directed to the "pro" table with NO waiting. Still hasn't clicked in that I have this P-R-O word attached to my name...

AND lucky for me I got to sit with Miranda Alldritt. She is one of the most down to Earth pro's I ever met. For the first time this season check-in wasn't scary for me because we were just rambling and chatting away...

Then something cool happened, at a meeting with coach I discovered Big Island looks a little like the bike course map for IM Canada... not even kidding... take a peek:

bike map

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Yes, that made me more than excited for the bike course. I even renamed all the places to local Kona land marks :)

Then I got to witness my team mate Janet WIN the local 5k! It was cool, she beat coach Paul by about 20 minutes! (just kidding, but she ran a 17 something and looked fit and fabulous!) Luke Mckenzie won for the men. Fun stuff, got me ready to run.

Tomorrow is the underwear run. Too bad my tighty whities and I will not be out there-I have to go pick up my bike from Bike Barn. YES, I am wearing the aero helmet and using the disc. AND I am excited about it.

It's cold... so I will also wear these super cool things:

Arm warmers in case you are like me and don't have a clue about staying warm on the bike... I am going for the 80's Cindy Lauper look. And I will save them to wear to my sisters yoga class...

It is COLD in Penticton right now BUT by race day they are calling it HOT... I am sure the lake will stay cold and the early part of the bike. This warm weather chick will be sure to ENJOY the wet suit and arm warmers until I see if the sun really does heat this place up... and when it does the salt tabs are waiting...


Thursday, August 21, 2008

Knock, Knock, Who's There...??



Talk about GOOD timing! Yesterday afternoon my bike, Splish suits, Blue Seventy, and coach made it to Penticton!

Not only did some VERY important race necessities show up, I also got a tour (all 112 miles of it) the bike course. It is BEAUTIFUL! Every mile of it looks a lot like a post card. The hills are not what I was thinking... maybe a little more hilly than expected. And the down hills, well, only 3 of them gave me the chills. Not the straight, fast down hills, the ones that curve with a 90* angle. Not a fan of that... BUT today is my day to CONQUER all my bike fears...

Hanging at Yellow Lake...

When my bike showed up yesterday coach sent me out for a 9o minute spin. When he asked how it went I responded, "Great! The views are awesome, the roads are nice, I felt pretty good..." but he wanted to know, how did the disc and aero helmet go...

I didn't use them coach. The curvy down hills, disc, and aero helmet are not my friends...yet...

Coach is on his way to pick me up in his truck...drive me to Yellow Lake, drop me off, make me ride down the hill, in the bars, in the aero helmet, and using the disc. He will be here in 5 minutes! He is making sure I get my @$$ down the hill without breaking and that I am not riding my training wheels and nicely ventilated helmet...

If I don't post soon I am still at the top of Yellow Lake. Like a chicken waiting to make the drop...


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Icing anyone?!

Burrrrrrrrrr! Just finished warming up after my ice bath, I mean SWIM! It is pretty darn cold. In fact, yesterday on the plane I read that 3 people died in Lightening Lake because of static water. That is where the water surface is warm from the sun but freezing underneath. So... during my swim I wanted to see for myself, I dove to the bottom of the lake and yep, I froze!

The lake is amazing! It is super clean, crystal clear, and calm... I felt smooth, relaxed, calm. Then i looked around, imagined it was race day, and a truck load (semi-truck load) of butterflies came fluttering in my gut! HOLY cow it is almost race day! I am freakin' out, just a little...

My bike is missing in action. Lost somewhere between Hawaii and Canada... of course my wet suit was in there too. Hope it shows up SOON!

Not having my wet suit made for a hilarious morning!! I had to squeeze my thunder thighs and J-Lo booty into my friends! A local Penticton/part time Kona gal lives here & she loaned me her size EXTRA SMALL wet suit... talk about funny stuff! But I got in, cut off all blood circulation, but it worked... hope I don't end up borrowing her extra small bike too!

Have a GREAT day... never let your bike fly without you! AND wet suits are VERY stretchable!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Here we go again...


It just doesn't get easy... I thought this trip away from family would be easier than the last 6 or 7. I was wrong. Today I leave for Penticton and today I started to cry. At least I made it this long without tears! Usually the tears begin to flow about a week out from my departure! Maybe the Olympics had me distracted or maybe this time I spent more time with Kainoa and less time on my bike (hope that pays off on race day).

#60. That's me, pro chick #60. 22 pro women, 3 slots, hopefully one of them has "Bree Wee" written on it. How am I feeling? Like I always feel race week- excited, ready, nervous, eager, prepared, optimistic, a little bit of pressure, the list goes on...

Kainoa just helped me pack the bike, he jumped on the bike box a dozen times, hope my poor bike is in one piece. The disc and ugly sperm helmet are packed- coach just told me I HAVE to bring them!!! When coach contacts you all the way from China during the Olympic games you know he isn't joking. Never tried the wheels or helmet... that's what race week is for right? To try new things?

I really am looking forward to Ironman Canada. I love the distance, I love to race, I love a good challenge, and so many friends and teammates (coaches included) will be there. They will be my adopted family for the week! There are about 6 of us from Hawaii going- yahooooo!

Other than the usual taper stuff all is going well. Actually, I made an ugly Splish suit. I mean really ugly! I tried to design it myself and when it showed up (Friday) I almost cried it was so ugly. SO I panicked. Thankfully Dawn and Ira at Splish are totally saving me from panic mode... today they are creating something for me and will send it to Canada this week, talk about last minute. That is the last time I ever trust myself to make my own suit for a big race. That is the last time I let the pressure of placing support logos consume the fun of my suit. It was bad. Talk about having one of the greatest supporters a girl could ever have though- thank you Dawn & Ira for making me a new suit!

Now to vacum the cereal Kainoa dumped all over the floor, maybe I should save that mess for Jim. He said motherhood duties don't count in the taper week... I have to clean it up.

Next stop Penticton, British Columbia!

And to my amazing friends, training partners, swim team, and Bike Works, thank you guys for being on this journey with me... Kaitlen and Jen your phone calls made my whole day! The emails and book was too cool, and each of you seriously are why I love Kona! See ya soon... oh, and Wendy, tell Lane to take my wheels and run next time!
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Saturday, August 16, 2008

This week's wonder...

Teammate Linsey Corbin vrooming with a disc and "really cool" helmet...

This week, all week, last week too actually, I have been wondering... about a disc and an aero helmet. WONDERING lots of things about them...

Why that helmet? How can you breathe, where does the heat rise to? If I move my head to the right or left (I don't ride very still) will I get whip-lash if the wind hits me? How much will it really save? Is it that much lighter? Seriously, why coach?

My list of questions goes on and on...

I have never liked that helmet. NOT because I think I am too cool for it, seriously, I ride bike most days in a t-shirt, but because perhaps I just don't get it. When coach INSISTED I get one and use it I had 14 excuses why I shouldn't...

To name a few, Wellington doesn't use it and no chick can out bike her even with one and I will cook my brain in that oven. I also don't keep my head still and the purpose of "aero" will fly out the window with that thing on my head...

EXAMPLE:
That is Beth (she let me borrow this photo, thanks Beth, I love ya!). We have similar riding styles, how the heck will that head position ever be aero with an aero helmet? Maybe if I can master Linsey's bike position it would be effective. But what about the heat? Explain that one please.

I have been holding a Rudy Project aero helmet that was given to me thanks to my cool friends at Johnson & Blanton, for the past couple weeks, and I still have not used it. I did put cool Hawaii flowers all over it though...

Now wheels... I have heard everything from 2-15 minutes can be saved on an Ironman distance ride with a deep dish wheel or disc. REALLY? What about a little thing called wind? Talk about life on an island, I train in stuff that if I was ever caught with anything kinda big on my bike I would blow clear into the ocean. Okay, I confess, I am a chicken. Here I am holding these BEAUTIFUL Zipps thanks again to Johnson & Blanton, still have not test drove them, but I did put a cool Hawaiian flag sticker on them...

What's a girl to do? Coach is on my case to use the stuff, to try it, to be a "pro", and I confess he is probably right (like always), but me and that stuff... oh man!

I was supposed to use them on Thursdays ride, intervals. I didn't. I had reasons though. It was windy. We had so much rain it caused run-off and made the roads a mess. There was glass on the road. Queen K is under construction. And I was scared...

Here we are about a week till race day. Now what's a girl to do. Contact her friends/teammates of course! Ring, ring, ring, calling Linsey Corbin, Rachel Ross, Elizabeth Fedofsky, & Eileen Swanson...

Girls help! Here are some of my most favorite responses from them...


  • Totally ride the disc, it's like a sail
  • Whooosh, whooosh, whoooooooosh
  • Sperm helmet, hate it, but coach requires me to use it, the RP has a low dork factor
  • Negative drag, yo! (that had me laughing...) me and no drag might not belong in the same sentence.
  • It's the engine
  • All that crap about your head getting hot - lie
  • The wind is not like where we live
  • Science says it makes you faster
  • You won't get whip-lash!
  • Wheels and sperm helmet really help, at least if you're in shape...
And the VERY best reason, had to agree 100%, and laugh is:

"You will be fine! And then coach can't tell you after the race how you would have been a minute faster or whatever if you'd ridden the disk/worn the helmet, you know?"

Thanks girls, knew I could count on you... now to try the wheel and helmet out sometime before race day... anyone up for a spin around the block? Don't be embarrassed though if I show up with a disc and aero helmet just to go around the block...


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Friday, August 15, 2008

I love the Olympics...

Shout out to Lisa...

Teammate Lisa Mensink is racing in the triathlon Sunday!! Go Lisa!!!

I have nothing too cool happening here in Kona. Kainoa just peed his pants, the pool is closed, it is voggy out (nothing new), and I am glued to NBC.

BUT there is something SUPER cool about to happen for someone I know...

In 2 days Lisa will be racing in the Olympics! It is one thing to have a hero in the games or to watch people you admire, but when you really know one of them, have trained with them, roomed with them, and tried to keep up with them, IT IS HUGE.

It is as if I want for her to do well, enjoy it, and have the race of her life as if it were me...

Lisa YOU ARE AN OLYMPIAN AND NOBODY CAN TAKE THAT FROM YOU! #39 we are cheering for ya!

If you want to check out her blog she has been pretty good about keeping it updated from China. Here it is: Lisa Mensink

Thursday, August 14, 2008

BIG Thanks...


Life on the BIG Island is like life in a SMALL town. Everyone seems to know just about everyone, everyone knows everyone's business, and everyone seems to care. It's just the way it is here. There's a bbq and you get invited (in fact I got one for Saturday and I haven't even talked to the invitee in like 21 years!) There are baby parties, birthday parties, wedding parties, and who knows what parties all day everyday and if you "just happen" to drive by and see the action you can stop in, nobody minds. I even think garage sales in Kona are just an excuse to gather friends in the front lawn. And Kona Aquatics Masters swim team got the award for "most social" swim club in the USA... I have no doubt we deserve the title...

But it goes on...

After IM Japan I had a bunch of pulls & tugs in every direction. It felt great to come home to the community of Kona, no pressure-I could be me, just support... Then IM Canada was put on the radar...

And support to try again was nothing shy of HUGE! Thanks to Auntie Linda, who totally & secretly gathered some notes and words and stories from pretty much the entire Kona Kingdom & a few of my most favorite blogheads (how I am not sure). But she did.

Yesterday I was in for my usual Bike Works visit and I got the GREATEST little book of notes I have ever received. I cried at some of the notes, laughed at others, and just felt this huge BIG smile across my face from everyone...

So without further-a-do (is that how you say it?), THANK YOU for the notes, I will be thinking of you guys on August 24th. You made my day!

Thanks to, in no particular order,

Jim & Kainoa, Linda Bless, Tim Cotter, Eric Nielson, Dad & mom, Doug Akagi, Bron, Cory, Ashton, Regaen, Ridge Wiedner, Lisa Vos, "Australia" Dan Evans, Louis Delatorre, Maile, Travis, Kailey, Dave Feduik, Rani "Road Runner" Tanimoto, Patrick Mclain, Jim Jennings (IM race director), Daniel Hodel, Brooke Myers, Nick Nelson, Jim & Lisa Young, Christine Winn, Linda Greentree, Laurie Beers, Mary Myers, Ariel Henbest, Cody Bergfalk- you had me cracking up!, Lisa Nelson, Travis B., Jackson, Dawn Henry, Mary Myers, Sam Brown-still laughing!!!, Dave O, Tim Robinson, Jamie Bull, Dusty Best, TJ Foster, Steve Stenzel-Funny stuff!!, Mike S, Shirley Pratt, Wendy Dewees, Betsy & Tom Solis, Randy W, Bill and Loraine V, Walter and Masami, Grant and Janet Miller, Vern "Hey Bern", Kym & Kris Kiser, Chrissie Wellington-thanks and I hope you SMASH all the gals at Timberman, Jason N-yes you are the BEST bike Mechanic, Karen & Rebecca W, Diane Lewis, Jeff Howard, Eileen Swanson, The Gaetners, Maggie Stovickova, Chris McCormack- I will let you draft me in Kona when you get here, Tammy Kelly, Darren & Beth Broome, Bob Smith, Brown Bear & Family,Pammer Kidani, Jen Nottage (I know you write me everyday :), James & Lindsay Cotter, Keith B, Kate Monster- that is the best quote I ever read by the way!, Flatman-LOVE the promise, Tina Walter, Paul Todd, Benson, Claire the Speed Racer, Mel Crandle- you made me cry! How did you get so nice?!, The Comacho's, Steve, & Rachel Ross

Each of you made my day... seriously, that was awesome and I thank you, and I have NO idea how any of the big mouth bunch on the Big Island kept that little book a secret!

I laughed for about 20 minutes after this note! My buddy Sam Brown saved the news paper results from a race we did together (about 5 days after I had my son!). It was the time he beat me, he promised to never let me forget it... and he glued this reminder in the little book!


From my friend Randy, I was totally surprised to hear this story. It meant a lot to me that he remembers that long ago...


Yes, I am a groupie... I still get star struck by the other pro women... and SHE is a total stud!


My BEST Kona training partner, we have been through the best and worst training days. Certainly I will pretend he is riding by me in Canada... and Cody, thanks for beating me up 10x this morning on the Queen K intervals! And for you Cody I might just go on the bike...

.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Gettin' Jiggy...


Do you see that bike? Can you read that name? My poor bike is being violated!


My bike found a boyfriend! I went to pick up my bike (she was getting all beautified for her race in Canada). She did NOT want to leave Bike Works! Seriously, I know the bike mechanics there, they are pretty good at shining things and rubbing down the frame, fixing derailers, changing tires and all that other bike stuff...but I don't know it they are that much fun! Just kidding guys...

So I scoped the scene a little better... it was another bike. Not just some bike getting fixed for the guy down the road or another triathlete. It was Spiderman's bike. My bike was cuddling in the corner of Bike Works with Toby Maguire's bike. I had to break it up. I had to end the madness and tell my bike to GET HER HEAD in the game! Race day is coming and I can't have her day dreaming about Toby's bike and her new summer fling!

My bike is officially off limits to sleep overs in bike shops from now on! If you see any little Scott Contessa mutts running around please send them my way... my bike is grounded till race day! And Toby (I mean Spiderman)... shouldn't you be saving a city or something! There is no time for biking in Kona! And keep your naughty Colnago on a leash!

As for me... Just over a week till the big day. Today was my last feisty run. 11 speedy miles and the legs are ALIVE! No pain, no injuries, a little pooped (but that is FINE it is TAPER time!) Tomorrow is my last ZIPPY ride ( I do have more runs and rides) but tomorrow is gonna be ZIPPY! I got new ZIPPS... and tomorrow I test ride them!

Happy taper to everyone that IS in taper mode and keep your bikes LOCKED inside if you live in Kona, Spiderman is on the loose and his bike is up to no good!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

How to taper...


When in Hawaii... and told to "taper"... I got it covered! Taper is supposed to be a time to relax, sit peacefully, enjoy the rest, put the feet up, breathe deep, just take a mental break from swim-bike-run.

So... I am tapering. And this is how... maybe not an "ideal" taper, but hey, it helped me BREATHE, CALMED me down, got my FOCUS off of non-important-worldly-stuff.

Breathe fresh air! Yes, Big Island is still under a severe vog blanket and we have been put on a "danger list"... time to flee the island (or go for clean air!)

Hike down to Pololu Valley, in slippers of course.

Do a surf check, just to make sure you aren't missing a swell...



Pile up rocks, I always see those little rock gardens and hear they help "relax" you, so we made our own rock garden at the beach.
Swim in the surf, helps with the BAD bike short tan lines!

Make a mud bath- kinda like sea salt bath!

More hiking in slippers...

Build sandcastles...

Stay hydrated (at least I got that part right!)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

I have em' too!

One of my MOST FAVORITE male triathletes, Leonardo Chacon from Costa Rica!

Yep, I have em' too. (lots of them!) I am pretty sure everyone does. Hard days. Bad days. Not so good ones. Whatever you want to call them. They exist and can be BEAUTIFUL things...

Here is a little secret I learned from Terry Orlick: USE them.

Pretty simple. Every single not-so-good race or training day is fully stocked with learning experiences! Those learning experiences are opportunities to make BIG improvements. I never just have a bad day and toss it in the trash or call it "not counted". They all count for something. Pick out the good parts, the things that went well, felt good, you enjoyed, made you happy, then pick out something to work on (if the day was one of the not-so-good-ones).

Another something I learned from Terry in our chat: Move on, don't dwell on it, do not focus on it.

This second thing is something I JUST LOVE. It is sort of an excuse to "forget about it". A chance for me to quit beating myself up over it.

So why this post? Because for some reason I have recently gotten questioned for never having a bad training day or race... totally appreciate the kind words and belief that "it's all good" in my hood... but I have bad days too, I am just getting better at learning from them and focusing on the "good" in them rather than the "bad" in them... (that is from Terry too).

Okay... so here goes today... my not-so-good training day just to let you know I have em' too. Here is my response to coach about my first real training session back after the post-Kainoa-germ-infested-sickness!

The Session: A mid-sized warm up, some accelerations, then some hill climb repeats (my favorite!), and a nice ride down into a brick...

Athlete Comments: Totally forgot to do the 5-6 accelerations! Not even kidding, I thought I was going to pass out when I first got started, my arms were so weak, my legs were tingling, everything in my body was as if it had never been used! I told myself I can tuff this out, this workout isn't fast, just strong, and I am strong... once to the hills I was feeling better, 8mph up a hill never felt so nice. Down the first hill I barfed on my bike! ooop's, gross, hold it together Bree! NO I am not pregnant and not on my period, I think this junk sickness is still in my gut! BUT, by the 3rd repeat I was JUST fine and enjoying my ride! Phewww...I made myself drink water even though I was just not wanting it and was scared it would come back up BUT it helped a lot! I will load up the SRM file soon, on its way...

Then I had to run, it was supposed to be a ZONE 1 run, you know, low HR...

Athletes Comment: Zone 1? What's s that? The moment my feet got running I was at 147 and from there I stayed in the 50 ' s till the little hills, that got me into the 60 ' s. I think it was either really hot, my legs are really weak, or the HR monitor is broke "again" because I was running slow... trying to anyways...

So... I had "one of those days". BUT I picked out as much good from it as I could and carried on...

Okay... back to Leonardo Chacon! Dios mio! I used his photo because he is one of my most favorite examples of using the not-so-good-days and making the most of them. I won't write his whole story (I might be one of his biggest fans, me & the ticos (Costa Ricans) go way back!!). A little something written from Libby Burrell:

Today I pay tribute to a young man with the heart of a lion! At a time where Leonardo Chacon (COSTA RICA) has almost watched his 2008 Olympic hopes and dreams fade away with bad luck (a crash in Mooloolaba, Australia and then a plastic packet getting stuck in his back derrailleur of his bike and totally putting him out of the race) he has jumped onto yet another long haul flight this time to South Africa and run his way into an excellent 16th spot at the Richards Bay BG Triathlon World Cup blowing new life into his possible Olympic journey. Bad luck nearly ruined it again for him though when his bike box went missing on the flight from the USA only to arrive in Richards Bay on the morning of the race! Despite all of this he stayed focussed on the job at hand and delivered one of his very best world cup performances of his career.

In my books Leo is a superstar in the making with an attitude that will stand him in good stead in his triathlon career for many years to come.



Thursday, August 7, 2008

Clean up on aisle 4...



Nothing like motherhood to put a tiny ding in the training...

Kainoa started day school a couple times a week and sure enough the little man brought home every germ on the planet. Yesterday I felt fine... until the grocery store...

Aisle 4, there we were, pushing Kainoa in the shopping cart when the most disgusting projectile vomit came launching out of the little guy and all over me! I stood there in shock. I have never seen so much vomit in my entire life. I had no idea what to do, frozen, I stood there hoping it was a bad dream. I am deathly horrified of puke, and I was covered, Kainoa was covered, the shopping cart and all of aisle four was covered.

I decided to make a run for it- right out the front door. BUT the cart locked up with the security lock since I never paid for the groceries. I was planning to just leave the one item that was in the cart in there and get home. Puke was dripping all over the store. Luckily Brooke put a "slippery when wet" sign on aisle 4 and one of the grocery clerks unlocked the cart and let me out. I took all Kainoa's clothes off and threw them in the garbage and drove him home in a diaper. Seriously, children should come with instruction booklets.

I was still covered in vomit. First things first, the hottest bath of my life to clean up Kainoa and me. Then a call to coach. I was about 13 seconds from crying, telling him I was about to get sick, I could tell, anytime I see or touch vomit I feel ill... he told me to relax, I am going to cause me to get sick worrying.

So I carry on... about to leave for swim practice and what do you know, the little germy Kainoa got me. Puke all over, this time mine. Straight to bed. And all of today was in bed too. So as I write, feeling a lot better after hugging the toilet all night, I am missing my 200 and 500 swim race! Of course I am bummed... but that is mother hood...

More sleep. Tomorrow back to the pool and on the bike. As for Kainoa, I may never let him go to school again...

Any mom's out there have some magic tricks to avoid the little germ gremlins!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Swimming Anyone? Calling Jen Nottage...

No, the answer was no. Coach officially wants to strangle me... he has worked SO long and SO hard on getting me to focus on the "bigger" picture and keep my goals in tack. In the instance of anything "fun" I jump on the train of "Let's do it!" and the big picture just hangs out in the distance. Guess that is why I need a coach, and one like Coach Paul who cares enough to save me from myself... Seriously... if not for him you might find me at a race every single weekend, every day of the weekend, sick, tired, injured, worn out, but happy just to be racing...

So... I will NOT be climbing up the side of a volcano this weekend. Oh I will be riding, still have that little race, IM Canada in the distance. AND I will be swimming...

CALLING JEN NOTTAGE! Are you there? Come swim with me please!! Yep, I am doing a pool swim meet. Hilarious! Of course there is no rest or taper for it... try a brick prior to the start. A nice ride/run tomorrow then a RACE. 200 and 500 free.

Saturday will be another ride/run- OUCH, followed by a mile for time! DOUBLE ouch! In a pool... gross. A mile in the ocean sign me up ANY DAY! I am always up for anything in the ocean... but a POOL? Who do I draft, I can't draft, Can I draft?, how will I count that high?

Jen, please show up to the pool Thursday about 5pm and Saturday about 2pm, I will be there sweaty and gross and needing you to keep me company! PLEASE! I'll give you a $1.00!!

AND... thank you to Blue Seventy I JUST got a fancy new wetsuit that fits like a glove for IMC!! hmmm, wonder if I can wear it in the swim meet????? The Blue Seventy is so flexible I just might be able to pull a decent dive off the blocks in that thing.... I am so tempted...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

PLEASE Coach!!!

This is a photo from the last time I had a really important question... coach always has a really important reason...

I wrote my coach an email but he is taking his SWEET time thinking about an answer... I know he secretly has spies in the Lifesport office (Janet and Shantel) to name a few that read my blog and tattle on me to him when I write nasty things about him... so I hope they see this and tell him to READ now and ANSWER me now...

Coach,
I need a big favor, a really BIG one... I need you to SAY "yes" to what I am about to ask... I think by saying yes you might just save my life from a boring 3 hour ride this Saturday and give me one heck-of-a-fun-day!

CAN I PLEASE RACE ON MY ROAD BIKE SATURDAY? Here are the details... it is really hard and really painful and I might pass out from lack of oxygen. It starts at the sea and rides STRAIGHT up to the stars (Sea to Stars Bike Race). It ends at the observatory... on Mauna Kea... you know, The United States highest point if you measure from below sea level...

So can I please do it? It is 34 miles long and 9,130 ft of straight up climbing, you need a 27 chain whatever you call it (I have one) and quads like Lance Armstrong (he is loaning me his)... so can I? It will take about 3hrs (I think... ) It has grades of +17% so it will be like climbing the Beast in St. Croix all day long.

So, is that a yes!? I will send you more Weezle Balls and banana bread! I can answer all 5,000 emails you get a day for you, I will even take a week off of giving you a head ache!


Please let me know soon...
Thanks!

PS, I would call and beg over the phone and let you hear me crying of desperation but Kainoa hid my phone!

B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L!!

Tim Marr... course record holder and Hawaii's pro triathlete stud!