Saturday, July 31, 2010

Next up: the Netherlands

The hubby and I are in Philly, waiting for our flight to Amsterdam. Life has been wonderfully hectic the past month, moving out of our State College apartment, and getting ready for the Transatlantic move. We said goodbye to many wonderful friends, renewed our vows (in the middle of the move) with our families there, and dealt with a mountain of admin. Now we are ready. The bike is on the plane along with four suitcases. The adventure will continue in Europe now.
Renewal of Vows

Friday, July 23, 2010

Windsurfing Mini-Vacay

The last leg of my parents' visit to the US involved a trip to NC, to see my in-laws on their home turf. Last year, I had decided that my reward for defending my dissertation would be windsurfing on the outerbanks. PERFECT! The hubby and his buddies stayed at the parental residence in Cary, NC. All four parents and I went to Duck, NC for two nights. The trip involved loads and heaps of good food (best steak, best mashed potatoes, and the most bestest chocolate fudge brownie sundae ever), two beautiful sunrises, a dolphin sighting, a kayak eco-tour, two runs, and... 3 1/2 hours of windsurfing.

 The 5 minutes spent reading on the beach...

Pre AM-run.

 Sunrise, with assorted dolphins...

Best for Last: Taking the Big Sail Out...

Saturday, July 17, 2010

I know...

I've been a terrible blogger. But for a good cause. My Mum & Dad are visiting from Greece, I passed my dissertation defense (yesterday, so you can call me Doc now), I am sorting a transatlantic move (we are moving to Europe in less than 2 weeks), I am wrapping up our lives here, and preparing for our new adventures in the Netherlands. Sadly, blogging wasn't the only thing at the bottom of the list. So was training. So I have 4 weeks to regain the fitness I had built up before the dissertation took over... Next week we'll be in North Carolina, visiting my in-laws (with parents and friends), so those are going to be some toasty runs...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Millheim Pool Sprint Tri Race Report

Last weekend, the wonderful hubby and I combined the Millheim Pool Sprint Tri with a bike tour. In the early afternoon of Friday, we mounted our bikes and leisurely rode to Millheim. We put a Knog rackless pannier on my bike, and I stuffed it with all kinds of goodies. So even though we went really slow, it was quite a workout.
Fully loaded bike, with new hot pink wheel rims!

We made it to Millheim's Elk Creek Cafe, where we had a formidable dinner. I had the burger and fries, and hubby had two salads...We then went to our B&B and had a great night's sleep.

 Meal Extraordinaire

The next morning (Saturday) I got up early and went to the pool where the tri was held. I was seeded #10 with a 4:35 estimated 300 yards. It turned out we were not allowed to flip turn, and since I had not been in the pool in quite a few weeks, I was worried that the 20 seconds head start I had on #11 would not be enough. Fortunately, I held #11 at bay, and we both passed #9. My swim time including run to transition was 4:55:90, good for 9th swim overall...

I spent way too long in transition (times are included in the bike portion) trying to figure out what to wear, whether to put the Garmin on or not, start the Garmin and stuff my phone in my wet jersey pocket. I thought I HAD to wear my race number and had forgotten my race belt, so I put the number on a t-shirt and ended up putting the cotton t-shirt over my wet tri-top. Very silly... Also, we were asked to carry cellphones, and trying to stuff the phone in a wet tri top took forever...

The bike... Bike went really really fast. I was on a roll, and kept on passing people. I also had new wheels (with pink rims) so I felt I SHOULD go fast, to honor the wheel made especially for me by Justin at Freeze Thaw. And I did. The bike was done in no-time. My total time (for 16 miles including transitions) was 54:24:80, 29th bike split overall.

 Yeah! The finish line is in sight!

The run... That was BAD. After not running for a while, totally overdoing it on the bike, over-dressing (2 t-shirts in 25C+) and starting too fast on an uphill, I TOTALLY BLEW UP. So I decided there was no shaming in walking and waved at all the good people that passed me while I was taking a leisurely stroll.Run time: 36:01:40! 46th run split overall...
 Now customary finish picture...

Total time: 1:35:22:10, good for 35th overall, 7th woman, and 1st in Women 30-34 (out of 3...). So I got a cute medal and a beer mug... I was also quoted in the local newspaper... Not my best line...

Afterwards, we packed up and rode the 25 miles or so back to State College, with a massive lunch stop in the middle.
 Getting ready to head back...

I would like to thank wonderful wubby for organizing such a cool trip and taking loads of pictures!!!
 Isn't he cute?

What did I learn:
I need to prepare better so I can transition faster and not end up overdressing. Forget the Garmin!

I also need to pace myself on the bike so I do not blow up on the run, adrenaline only gets you this far.

Feedback on the race:
The organization was absolutely excellent. There were many volunteers to help on the road, and they cheered like crazy. The bike route was absolutely gorgeous and the run route was fun.

Next up:
Happy Valley Sprint Tri on Saturday (I am number #165).