Sunday, May 27, 2012

First OWS of the Year

I like to think of myself as the initiator. I throw out good ideas, get everyone to sign on and then try to back out.  That is my M.O and it seems to have worked extremely well for me thus far.  Unfortunately I have surrounded myself with people who refuse to let me back out and so we get to the subject of this blog post - my first open water swim of the year.

For those of you from warmer climates you may not see any problem with swimming open water in the middle of May.  Indeed I know some of my friends down in Arizona and Texas are already doing tris with open water swims at this time of the year.  But this is the Pacific Northwest.  It gets cold here.  Really cold. And it stays that way until August (i.m.h.o) when it starts getting cold again. you may have guessed that I am NOT a fan of swimming in cold water.  Add to that the murky, seaweedy, fishy lake system and well you get the picture. But since Boise 70.3 is only 3 weeks away and the water temp for the race last year was around 52F (11C) I knew I had to get some practice in before I toe the line in June.

So after the race on Saturday we headed down to Liberty Lake.


Getting into my wetsuit seemed like a workout in itself..  I am glad to report that my trusty blue seventy wetsuit still fit me (win) and I wanted to test out my new neoprene cap and socks.


{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

So after much dock pacing  I finally found my courage and jumped in.
Michelle said that my language was a little too colorful but I think I was just mentioning to her here how invigorating the water felt.


{photo credit Natalie Sidles}



This week has been a busy one in the Melville household.

Jack turned 9.

Last year in single digits :-(

And he crossed over in Boy Scouts ( I think that means he moved up to the next level but that's Matt's department and I just come along, clap and take pictures).


This week has been full of tryouts...( that is a whole other post)...and lots of other end of school year activities, exams and the like.

I think that is why its so nice when summer rolls around.  No schedule...well, at least until summer sport starts.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Windermere Half Marathon

{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

My training plan had a 2 hour run on Saturday and since that coincided with the Windermere half marathon which I have run before I had planned to do the race as my long run. The week before the race I had another visit from the dark cloud of bad juju that has been hanging around lately and I injured my knee.  It was just muscular so I went to Helga the torture masseuse and she beat my knee into submission enough for me to think that I could still do the race.

The first time I did this race it was my first half marathon. I remember being so nervous and not being able to sleep the night before. Not this time.  A full nights sleep and I rolled straight out of bed and into my spandex without opening my eyes.
My friend Michelle and her family picked me up and delivered my to the start line.  It was Michelle's first half marathon so it was nice to be able to be there and share her excitement with her.  Her husband and kids turned out to be the uber race sherpas and best cheer squad ever.  They were all over the course that day taking photos of everyone. I think they were as exhausted as the runners by the time it was all over.

{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

Without boring you with all the race details, the weather was perfect, the race wasn't too crowded and there were plenty of my team mates out there running too.  It was just about as good as it gets.

{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

The first couple of miles I sped up to get out of the congestion and then I eased up and just ran by feel  - keeping my heart rate nice and low and comfortable.Coach Scott had written on my plan not to "race" this one so my legs wouldn't be trashed for the rest of the workouts over the weekend. So I just settled into an easy rhythm and kept turning my legs over.

{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

The race itself went by super fast. We were running along the river for the most part so the scenery was beautiful and a good distraction.  It was nice to have lots of friendly faces out their showing their support too.  The Sidles kept popping up everywhere, my neighbors and friends, the Riels made a surprise appearance a couple of miles from the finish, and then my tutu clad family were waiting for me at the finish line along with a lot of other teamblazers who had already finished and were cheering the rest of us in.

{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

{photo credit Ciara Melville}

The good news is that my knee held up the whole way with no problems. And with about a mile left to go I realized that this might be a PR day after all. I have been trying to crack 2 hours in a half marathon and as I crossed the finish line I realized I may have actually done it.  Of course then I forgot to stop my watch so I wasn't really sure until the official times were posted.   1:59:22 for 13.2 miles ( the course was a little long).

And of course congratulations to my awesome friend Michelle who trained hard for this race and completed it the same way she does everything.  With joy and a smile.

{photo credit Natalie Sidles}

Now back to Boise training...only a little over 2 weeks.  The tapering has begun!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Friday Faves

Wish I could sleep like a puppy


And I just couldn't resist this....


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Coming out the Other Side

Grief is such a personal thing.  Everyone deals with it differently.  I won't lie, these last 10 days have been really rough. I'm not going to get into all the details but I feel like I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Today was Coach's Scott's Memorial Service.  So I think its the day when the healing begins.  I expect to have more good days than bad from here on out but I'm still thinking that there WILL be bad days.  I'll cross those bridges when I come to them. 

The most uplifting thing to come from all this is the overwhelming outpouring of love and support we have received from our local triathlon community. Truly I think that triathletes are a totally unique group of individuals.  Yes, we race against each other for the most part but we also spend a lot of time cheering each other on, training together and encouraging one another.  And when times get tough we band together and support each other like nothing I have ever been a part of before.

We had a Memorial ride for Coach Scott a few nights ago and hundreds of people turned out. They came from all different triathlon and cycling clubs around the PNW .It is amazing how one person can impact so many lives. goes on.  I miss him like crazy.  And I expect to feel that way for a long time. He was my coach, my training partner and my friend.  But he left behind an amazing legacy.  One that is all about paying it forward.  Scott's favorite saying was "Enjoy the Journey" (ETJ) and that is what I intend to do....all the way to Ironman Arizona.