Sunday, February 28, 2010


Sunday I over dosed on blueberries in my granola and drank green tea for breakfast. Kainoa watched cartoons. Sunday I got to be in the ocean, run on the beach with some good friends at Mango, and accidentally swim Todd into the buoy line. I got to play barefoot. Sunday I smiled that the island was still here, calm, sunny, and warm water untouched by the tsunami. Sunday my hair was salty and my skin kissed by the sun.

Sunday Luis and Eric took me on my longish run to a place I'd never ran. I smiled a million smiles seeing somewhere new and fell even more in love with my beautiful life on an island. Sunday I wished my camera was in my sports bra so I could have photos of that run. The breeze was beautiful, the ocean gentle, and the path never ending. Sunday was the best run company since last Sunday's run partner with Clara.
Sunday I realized my life is sometimes an uphill climb. Views from the top always make it worth it so I keep going. Sunday I played island tunes all afternoon in my house, simple and sweet, and made me feel like falling in love-those island songs have that effect on me. Kainoa and I fell asleep on the couch with a book. Sunday we made a green smoothie full of who knows what but it tasted tropical. I love my sons blue eyes this Sunday more than last Sunday. Sunday my sister called to tell me she qualified for Boston, I smiled really big. Another friend called too, just because. I like those calls.
Sunday Kainoa and I caught another sunset, at the 5th beach this week. It was golden and faded into a purple sky, purple skies at night are my favorite. We laid where the ocean meets the sand and watched the sun sparkle on the water. It reminded me of his eyes when he is really happy.
Sunday Kainoa and me do what moms and sons do best, share some time. We picked up sea glass and tossed it into the ocean. We collected shells and talked to all the fishermen we found. Sunday Kainoa kept asking about sharks and tsunamis at the beach. I love how children never stop wondering about things, life.

Happy Lapule.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tsunami Saturday...

All I have to say (of any real importance) is THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU MAHALO MAHALO MAHALO that the tsunami came and went with nothing more than a surge that carried a whale near the shore! I'm so thankful the island, the ocean, friends, family, and our home is still here in one DRY piece.
Moments of possible danger totally show you how much you are loved and how much you love others. Everyone on the island was opening their homes to those of us that live on Ali'i Drive. neighbors who knew I was a single mom came to check on Kainoa and me (way early, like 5am) asking if we need help carrying stuff to the truck or filling tubs with water. It was awesome to see the town pulling together. In my mind, everything was calm, as if I had to be really brave looking for Kainoa. So we chilled all morning long, leisurely packing a few things as if we had a beach party planned. A few cops came to get us out (we were pretty much the last car in our condo complex). Finally we left for higher grounds.
When all was said and done, I passed out. Literally passed out in the shoe closet of Bike Works, woke from a phone call from a friend and a camera flash. Was told we can go home, evacuation was over. Now....I'm just sad for those in Chile that didn't get as lucky as we did, my heart is totally sorry...
OUr 5 hour evacuation included riding bikes of all shapes and sizes, eating too much, playing on the computer till my eyes went blurry like a total geek, rubbing Brooke's belly for good luck, and laughing with all the bike shop crew.

Uncle Kawika took Princess and all her cousins to higher grounds too. Most the afternoon was waiting for the waves. We had to wait for 8 of them, about 20 minutes apart, before the tsunami was over. It took so long when there was nothing much to see. Again, the company was good though and a day where my swim and run were put on hold to be safe with people I love was a good day.

Kainoa and I were the last car off Ali'i Drive, thank you cops for making us was kind of sad not knowing what would happen. You have to take life as it comes though and nobody could predict exactly the magnitude of what could have happen, so with Kainoas hand in mine we said good bye to our home with hopes that it would all be okay...and it was....

Thanks a heap for all the prayers, messages, and support. The emails and phone calls were amazing and truly showed how great people are! Even more awesome was that they came before anything happened. Sometimes we never reach out to those we love until it's too late and today was unreal to see so many people reaching out before anything even happened... I love you all back!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Puffer Fish...

Today I feel like the puffer fish. Everything in me hurts, even my eyes. Twice this week that small voice saying, "Are you going to make this" tried to talk to me. The week was not that easy, at all. The swims kept me going thanks to fish and great lane mates. The rides kept me going thanks to some company and one really long solo day that I wanted to tackle on my own so I knew it was possible even when pooped. The runs got a hold of me pretty good, I always loved them but sometimes questioned how I would manage them because my legs ached so much. Honestly, I was on survival mode 2x this week and if another scooter scooted by me I would have taken a ride home...but it's Friday and the next 2 days look like cake compared to beef I was served this week.
The sunsets grabbed hold of me each night and reminded me to just settle in and calm down, rest easy and wake up to do it all again no matter how horrible I feel and do it as if I want to, not have to.
Kainoa just said, "Mom, I love you", moments like those sprinkled throughout my week helped me along too...time to tuck him (and me) in for another night. Keep going...because you want to.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Don't Wanna Miss A Thing...

This is Gary, Junko let me borrow her husband for the morning. I was in need of a "pacer" and he was the only boy on the massive list I sent around who could pull me through my ride. It was possibly the best solution for a "go hard-hurt like mad-hold on-fall apart" girl like me when it comes to pacing. Girls, whenever your workout requires some pacing efforts and you must nail them (as in not too easy, not too hard), find a guy to pull you around, it works wonders!
The ride was super...except one small thing...
I had this song "I don't wanna miss a thing" in my head all morning and ride long! ALL ride long... I was jamming like a kid at a candy store. The tune wasn't exactly "pump up tunes" but somehow it was an excellent ride nonetheless, maybe I'm just really in love with my bike.
After that it was some good, hard running with Africa on my mind. I was pretending to be there... seeing elephants and zebras and whatever else is waiting for me. Moments of pain and suffering came just like I'm sure to encounter during race day, but I was fully embracing them and even saying "Bring it on, I want the practice" and kept on running in the hot African sun (or Kona sun anyways).
About the time I finished the ride/run it was beyond lunch time and I was toast. It was another plop on my living room floor too tired to even take off my shoes or stinky sports bra and lay there in a pile of pain. If crying was an option tears would have flowed.
Just when I realized the day is slipping away and it's nearing time to get Kainoa from school there was one small thing left to do...swim. This is my dream job, I must get a move on. To say I was excited would be a lie, I wanted to nap. But on my car I found a little baby dolphin, a gentle reminder that I love swimming and can do this. I had no clue who left it (but would solve the mystery later), and all of a sudden motivation to splish and splash happy laps was filling my tired body.
Swimming was great! Not sure how it happened, TRAVIS, but my SPLISH bikini was accidentally NOT MINE but sized to someone else. It was a medium top and small bottoms. Let's just say that my suit bottoms were more Brazilian cut than ever providing a wonderful tan on my white bum and nothing filled my top but a lot of water every time I pushed off the wall (major drag). For future reference it's small top bigger bottoms, thank you. The swim really did go okay, thanks to pull gear and it wasn't a long swim, phewwww.... made it just in time to get Kainoa from school.

To top off Tuesday it was "Taco Tuesday", a regular event in Kona Land for some of us Kona Aquatics Crew. The beauty of the night other than the great friends and much needed burritos to refuel me, was a purple sunset. Purple skies are my most favorite...
It is now WAY beyond my bed time...Kainoa is snoring, and the water bottles are just now filled for tomorrows long day in paradise.
I Don't wanna miss a thing... the song is still in my head,

Monday, February 22, 2010

Beautiful, Crazy...

If every night could end on the beach, in the sand (or ocean), with a sunset, I'd be the happiest girl in the world! I just can't get enough...
Monday was good for me. Swim was crazy, the legs were a little gone from yesterday's running but the mind, heart, and arms were fully loaded!! Our lane was filled with nothing but big boys so the water was fast. Coach Steve was in one of his moods where he gave us a challenge set. The last round was just 4x100 and he wanted us to pick a time and hold it for all 4. Of course I was the first one he picked on, "Bree, I know you are going to pick a time, go a 1:05 on the first one, then try to hang on and I dont want you to fall apart and end up with a 1:10 at the end for going out too fast on round one." Then he asked me what I wanted, for all 4. Like the smart mouth that I am (only because I love Coach Steve), I told him, 1:05 coach. The boys laughed and so did I.
Round one, 1:02. Now the joke was on me, just what Coach Steve wanted me not to do. Round 2, 1:03, round 3, 1:01, and round 4....1:00, but Monroe and Coach said it maybe was a 59. It was awesome, best swim I've ever had in a pool and I dont even like pools. It was the SPLISH. Or the coaching, or the lane mates, or Coach Jimmy's help with confidence regrowing, or maybe because I need to focus and get fast so I can pay some bills, or maybe a bit of all of those things...

Before my sunset with Kainoa it was a short little run. Me and running are falling in love. The moments aren't so awkward anymore, like 2 left feet, it's more like we are dancing together now, to the same song.

My goal this week, because I'm blessed enough to live on an island, is to see 7 sunsets in a row. Tonight was simple, just slippers, Kainoa, and me. Coach has warned me by the end of the week there is a very strong chance I will feel like poop. Everything will hit me, the race, the miles, life, all of it. To expect it and be okay with it, not freak out. The next 2 days look a little scary and now I understand why I might be crawling by the weekend. We are still trying to figure out what load my body can handle and how much recovery I need (this is all for Ironman South Africa baby!!). We have to figure it out now so when the big day gets near we aren't still trying to figure out the coach/athlete thing. So far so good...
Today's adventure was acupuncture and a visit with the herbalist (hope I spelt that right). You know me, I don't do hospitals unless a bone is broke or I need surgery. Anything else I'm all about figuring it out from the inside out, Chinese medicine, natural paths, you know, that stuff. Got some herbs to help keep me in one piece during this block of training and some needles to keep things on the right track and heal other things...all injury prevention baby!
Finally, I signed up for my first triathlon of 2010. A local one, The Lavaman Triathlon. Love it so much and it will be a train-through race a month out from Ironman. The other races on my calendar are still fluttering but I think we are just about done putting them on paper. Good.
Cheers to a good sunset all week long, wherever you are!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

17 Olympic Style Miles...

I woke up to this text from coach...laughed a little, smiled a lot, then put on my "work clothes" and got ready for another day at the office! Today's work clothes changed a little because I was running with a REAL RUNNER, not a triathlete girl like myself. Clara is the real deal. Our last tempo run she was in bum huggers and told me she would do the race with me and all 17 miles of my day, if I ran in them too...because that's what the Olympic girls do. KSWISS, if you are reading this, can I have some bunners (as the real runner girls called them), please? Roxy surf pants were the best "bunners" I could find in my closet...

We warmed up together, we got ready to race, then we raced. HARD. It was the Alii 5.2 miler (it was spelt in inches though thanks to Pea's mad Math skills). The goal was tempo pace (6:15) as we both had a solid week of training in us and just wanted a strong run with whatever was left after the week. Not to mention the only reason I am "sort of" hanging with Clara is because she just had her son 10 months ago and is on the come back for 2012 Olympics in the 10k (her specialty).

Miles 1-4 were amazing, a few sub 6 minute miles, and a nice little pack. She was helping me with strategies to work through the pain, the discomfort, the mini hills, the pacing, the breathing. It was like having a personal run guru taking over your very run and walking you through the "What do I do when this happens?" On the final mile it was me holding on for dear life, her screaming back at me to hold on, and all I could think of was the hills, the riding, the swims, everything in me. And you know when you get passed sometimes you think, "Bummer, just got passed, now I'm in 3rd" so you settle, sometimes you are almost relieved to get passed so you can settle into your own pace. Well, this time I wasn't allowing myself to be bummed, I just dug harder and tried to keep up as best as I could. I wasn't going to be okay with dropping off. She kept yelling for me and I kept digging. We finished up her 2nd Overall/first chick with 5:57 pace and me 5th overall/2nd chick with 6:03 pace-44 seconds better than last year on the same loop...Never have I hung so well after getting passed and fought the "oh well got passed demons". Never have I been so inspired to run. Never have I wanted bunners (real ones) so bad in my life! They make you really feel like a runner, because even as a tri-girl on run days, like today, I want to be a runner, like Clara. THANKS Clara, so much!
After that we kept on running. 17 miles of running with Clara taught me a million new lessons that I plan to keep tucked in deep. Humility is one of them. Here is a big time girl from the mainland, in the small town of Kona, eager to to play in our local races and lend her knowledge to a local girl, and all I had to do in return is wear real run bunners so I look like a runner not a tri-girl today.
Soon after all my sun soaked miles with Clara it was Brooke and Nick's baby shower. It didn't make me want another baby at this moment, but man it was incredible seeing 2 people so in love and about to start a family together, that I wanted, I need someone to make me an ice bath after Clara's torture, ha ha ha!! Anyways, CONGRATS Brooke, Nick, and baby Whistler Reef!! 4 more weeks to go! Love you lots!
Okay... time for sleep, I'm sure Coach Jimmy has more things this coming week for me to "swimbikerun like I stole them".

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Just Breathe...

Just breathe... I don't suggest dumpster diving to get a fresh breath, I was looking for my keys that I tossed out with the trash & Nick happened to enjoy the entertainment without offering to help. But really, just breathe...
My sister tells me everyday to "Just Breathe Bree", she calls to remind me, texts to remind me, even wrote it on the top tube of my bike to remind me. Often I mistake "breathing" as "living" and I fill each day with a million mini moments of whatever can jam pack itself into that spot in my life. Makes me feel really alive...
During this afternoons "jam packed post swim/ride mini adventure" I ran into my friend Bobi. She told me she saw the strangest thing yesterday, she saw me standing on the side of the road. Just standing still, in one spot, not running, not walking, talking to nobody. Just standing. She went on to tell me it was the first time ever in our friendship I didn't look like I was doing anything at all. Just being still. She must have caught me at the only still moment in my yesterday, waiting for my sister to pick me up.
After hearing her a reality check happened...I'm really bad at being still, at "just breathing". Today's plate was another fully loaded one but I dropped it all and sat next to the water, doing nothing. Not reading, writing, talking, thinking, looking, waiting for nothing, just laid there motionless in my mind and body...just breathing...
Today is 62 days till Ironman. It's really no wonder those LONG days racing often feel so LONG, lovable but LONG. I can't even breathe still for 5 minutes! There must be a healthy balance between "live it up" and "be still", for now that's going to become my "just breathe" moments, the spot between where you are alive but you are simply breathing.

At the waters edge I discovered so much when I let it all go...

I discovered just how much I really love when the sun kisses my skin on a sunny day, the chats with my mom, the canoes during this mornings swim, his smile, when Kainoa tells me he loves me, yellow plumerias coming into bloom, the old man splashing in the water as if he were a child again, the stars that promise to pop out tonight, those little text messages from Brooke reminding me to "just breathe", the excitement of knowing tomorrow is a local race and I get to play. I discovered that sometimes it really is okay to just be still, breathe, and trust that life will still go on even if you take a small break...

.Just Breathe...


Thursday, February 18, 2010

More Motivation...

Today was a good one, I think the island is still on a "high" from the Lance/Lieto TT yesterday. Everyone is still talking about it, sharing fotos, the newspaper had it front page sports section, and of course it was skipping through my mind still. Then I saw this (see above), from my friend Erin. WHOA ya my heart got motivated. Just when you think you are living each breath as it could be the last, loving all your friends and family as much as possible, and doing things with a purpose, little reminders make you jump into overdrive, and this put me full speed ahead!
Instant motivation to not worry life away but fill it full of some good moments.
Then I got view of this foto... its my amigo in Costa Rica. I remember when we were 16 and playing that game, "What do you dream of in the future?". He always said, "Be a pro surfer and teach surfing to the world". My gosh he is doing it! He said it, he went through the ups and downs of chasing a dream, and now he is happily on a surf board everyday of his life! Yeah, that pretty much gave me more motivation than the first picture. Now I was on double-time motivation with everyone around me just finding another reason to press on, believe, chase a dream, and then see them come true...
I had some feisty running this morning. Coach made me use the treadmill as my BOSS. Pretty much I put in the numbers, set the pace, and had to make the legs move or fall off. After the 1st of 10 rounds my head did a little, "oh my gosh, really, 9 more?". Then I looked to the left and who did my wandering eyes see??? Kona & the WORLDS number one big wave rider, Shane Dorian. Yep, in the very same gym "training". After that 2-10 were like butter. Smooth as can be I let my dreams dangle in front of me. Seeing another dream chaser and achiever like Shane gave me so much motivation the treadmill broke after I was done with it!
Then I got this photo, another one from yesterday to add to my 10 others. This one I really like, I might even hang it on my fridge as more MOTIVATION. My whole day went like that, little snap shots flung into my life of people all over the world who were and are "just people" who decided to dream and chase.
Wherever you are and whatever you are doing keep doing it if you love it...and dream some more, then don't stop till you get there...
NIGHT from Kona!
PS. 64 days...dreaming...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lieto-Lance Rumble on The Rock...

All because of a little TWEET TWEET Queen K endured a little rumble on the rock. I'm talking they passed cars, sounded like a train, and scared even the whales further out to sea. It was pretty cool. Before I begin, I like both the guys, not that I'm "friends" with either of them, but I respect both for various reasons and admire them both for various reasons, I'm a Kalani Robb fan if we are being honest.
About 9:35 this morning the rock shook like an earth quake. I had a long ride that turned too fast, and some local crowd support showed up to cheer. Our island is big Lance fans, he supports one of our local canoe clubs so we love him, he keeps the boys in the water. Most the town showed up in Lance shirts and so did the canoe boys, on Trek bikes of course. Then a handful of triathletes showed up hoping a triathlete can take down a was kind of funny to see the "sides". I was mutual and just up for a good show.

Lieto was pretty impressive, he swam first. Both boys had been training long and hard for a while so it was a fair game. However, if you had front row seats, like we did, we discovered a little something. Lance won the thing by 15 seconds, but what you don't know is the tail wind was MASSIVE! I'm talking beautiful... Lance was riding 56k's an hour beautiful.
Here is what impressed me more, the stud, had his personal protection crew riding behind him, that SUV if you were here to witness, completely blocked Lance's tail wind most the 14 mile ride. The man was moving without that help and we all screamed at the way he literally flew up a hill. It was crazy fast like maybe he was going down hill speed. And on Lieto's side, he swam a million miles first, the guy has 3 sports not 1 to train for and a man named Crowie to beat :)

I think in this foto Lance is congratulating Lieto, it was a good little chat, totally honorable, both men really humble about the fun they played during a training camp. Thanks Lieto and Lance, you made my long ride effortlessly fly by... The locals got in on the action too. We tried to catch the men or the men chasing the men (they let others play). The road bike was not working for me, I just sort of grabbed Dave's wheel and yelled for him to go faster and pull me up to them, never happened, but a training day I will never forget. I really hurt though, that wasn't smart...and the brick run was even worse. Now it's time to swim...however...65 I will press on.

Go Lance! Big Island loves you! (foto courtesy of Randy Wrighthouse)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Today is 66 days till Ironman number one of my season... TALK ABOUT HAPPY! I love this time of the game, its perfect. Still plenty of time out to make gains and fine tune and build and enjoy. Much longer and I'm like a little kid that can't even really focus just yet because too long is too far away and my brain doesn't work that well long distance. Too short and all the fluttering butterflies start to spin and the energy to race starts to consume my every breath... 66 days is perfect, actually the next month will be perfect timing...

I woke up to a gorgeous sunny day in Hawaii and hill repeats. Pretty much coach gave me the workout he did with Lance last week. With the number 66 days on my hand I was ready to climb and keep the focus. My goal was boldly written on my hand and I wanted to hurt and work really hard for it, all day long. We had to climb this crazy beast of a hill 3x. Usually, in any realistic life you just climb it once, climb to get out of the bottom of a giant slope off a volcano.
Never would I consider hill repeats on it, today I did it 3x and each time I had to be faster. 1 and 2 hurt but 3 threw me off my bike. Me and Ku'uipo (my road bike) landed smack on the side of the road in a pile of small volcanic rocks. 66, 66, 66 kept repeating in my head and I just wanted to get up that hill like a crazy lady on a mission or a big boy running for a doughnut. My training partner for the day let me go, he said I look posessed, he then found me at the top curled in a ball swallowing down my throw up that was trying to come out from working it, again like the big boy after a doughnut. Thankfully the way home, all 90 minutes back to Kona, was spin, of course up and over a few more hills.
Water bottle refill spot... best cold hose in the South!

My head feels like these guys right about now, kind of spinning, a little cloudy in the eyes, and hard headed...
Just shy of 5 hours later we were home to Kona with legs that wanted nothing to do with swimbikerun. Oh my life is too sweet though, I had a speedy run to tackle. 66 days, 66 days, 66 days. A quick lunch, rub out the legs, catch my breath, pass out on my floor for 30 minutes, and it was time to run. PERFECT, mid day, full sun over head, and Clara. Yes, Clara, a girl I met yesterday who is in town with her ITU hubby and son.
Clara is shooting for 2012 Olympics, just missed it in 08 due to having a baby, ect. Anyways, I knew all about her, her reputation precedes her. Of course my mouth is also really big and I love having people to train with so something like this flew out of my big mouth yesterday when I met her, "WOW, wanna run with me while you are in town? I need you." I know, silly. Sure enough she is game and today killed whatever was left in me on the 8 miler, I think we ran it at her 33 10k pace. We both showed up in blond pony tails and pink sports bras (unplanned) and took over Alii Drive like a race. Her company was amazing, her run is beautiful, she was motivating and encouraging and talking to her (when I could breathe that is) was like talking to one of my guy training partners, only she could beat all of them in a run race. (No offense boys).
After that I ended up on my living room floor again, this time I did not move at all, literally not an inch. Not sure the last time I felt like this. 66, 66, 66 kept me moving, kept me chasing a goal, kept me pressing on with each training session. Dinner and a shower just happened, barely. Now my pillows are calling-nice 7pm.
This morning from my lanai I saw the sun rising up over Hualalai and I knew I would love the day, I just knew it. Now Hualalai is about to settle in for the night (see it above??). What a perfect way to spend 66 days before a race.
Really good night from Hawaii...