From Fat to Triathlete

Tag: triathlon

Wilmington traffic can be heavy in places, often with no reason at all.  If there is a reason, it’s usually just because of a fender bender where the participants decided it was better to block traffic than move to the side of the road.  Wilmington is also one of those towns that does not have a great pattern of roads.  There is no easy way to get from one place to another.  Even leaving our neighborhood can be tricky.

However on Saturday there was a reason for the slow and stopped traffic.  There were 1800 people participating in the Beach 2 Battleship Triathlon which necessitated the blocking of one lane of a busy thoroughfare and also stopping traffic on occasion to let cyclists cross the road safely.  Now, I have no problem with this and wouldn’t have a problem if I was one of the drivers either, however it seems there are some that don’t share my feelings.

By the time I got to mile 18 of my cycling adventure, traffic was at a standstill and I was riding by all the stopped cars.    The first “boo” I heard out a car window just confused me.  I wasn’t sure I heard it correctly, so I shrugged and just moved on.  The next comment was “Hurry up, we are all waiting on you!”  Even though I knew it wasn’t true, it gave me pause.  As I mentioned in my race report, I was struggling with a bent derailer which was not allowing me to shift gears at all.  The negativity just added to my frustration and discouragement.  It certainly did not increase my pedal speed.  There were 5-6 more negative comments, and surprisingly only 2 positive cheers out of car windows as I cycled on.   The whole experience left me wanting to just give up.

Let me pause for a minute and say that I am not petite.  (You might have already gathered that from the Fat to Triathlete name of my blog)  I am an overweight triathlete.  On this particular day, I was at the back of the pack.  There were no other cyclists to be seen, and I was being followed by a van with a big sign on the side that said “Last Cyclist”.  So, I’m sure these motorists thought that as soon as I went past, the roads would miraculously clear and they would be free to go.  (Not true since they weren’t technically waiting on me, but they didn’t know that.)

Thinking back on it later, it really made me mad.  I wish I had been able to stop my bike at the people who yelled and asked if they wanted to trade places.  At least I was out there, and not sitting in my car.  My next thought was shock.  Why would you put someone down like that?  It’s crazy to me.

I remembered those feelings later on that day as we were driving away from downtown.  We were stopped by a police officer so some race participants could run across the street.  You better believe I rolled down my window, shook my cowbell like crazy and cheered!  I hope they heard me and it brightened their spirits some.  I hope I can continue to remember and encourage others no matter what their journey may be.

This small instance is not indicative of my experiences the rest of the day.  I heard a huge amount of positive and encouraging comments along my journey, and every one of them lifted my spirits and my pace.  The encouragement far outweighed those few miles of negative jerks.

Mr Beau Vine with a good message

I was downtown a few weeks ago and saw a great church marquis.  It simply said “Avoid Negative People”.  What a great idea!  The cow in the picture is Mr Beau Vine, a  ”Stress Ball”  that Gayle carries with her to record her travels.  You can follow their travels here.

The whole experience got me thinking, I wish I could have avoided those negative people on Saturday.  I wish I could avoid negative people everyday.  However, as a large woman participating in a sport dominated by skinny people, it seems to follow me.  I just need to remember (as do all of us that are not the “ideal size”) that I am not doing this for other people.  I don’t run and ride my bike for those guys stopped in traffic.  I do it for me.  It makes me happy, it’s making me healthier and thinner (I hope).  So, while I can’t avoid the negative, I can choose to not let it bother me.  It certainly won’t cause me to quit!  I am a fat triathlete.  I’m having a lot of fun! and I’m still tri’ng

 

 

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The Day Has Arrived

October 19, 2012

Tomorrow is the big day – Beach2Battleship triathlon.  I haven’t trained like I should (blog post on that in the near future), but there is nothing I can do about that now.  All I can do is go out, do the best I can and HAVE FUN.

Today was an almost frantic day.  With getting food, clothing and everything else together, picking up my race packet and making sure all the right things got to all the right places, there wasn’t much time for anything else.  I did get to practice putting on and taking off my wetsuit a few times.

At first I thought with the triathlon in my own town, things would be easier.  But now I’m not so sure.  If I had to get everything together a few days ago and then had a day to just check in and hang out, without the distractions of work, home or other things, it might not have been so busy.  Although I guess I could have been more prepared and gotten some things together yesterday……

As for now, I am ready and resting on the couch.  I was able to go to bed early last night and will head to bed early tonight.

I’m looking forward to a great day tomorrow.

Still tri’n

 

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172 Days…..and Counting

April 30, 2012

Well, it’s official.  I am registered for the Beach2Battleship Iron Distance Triathlon in October.  I have been trying not to throw up since I finalized my registration.

It’s super exciting since I am now one step closer to my goal.  It’s a bit terrifying since it’s such a huge undertaking, but I’m up for it.  I feel pretty good about my training.  I feel great about my running, since I’m getting faster and stronger every week.  I’m not feeling so hot about my cycling.  I have got to get more hours on my bike.  Which is something I plan to start work on this afternoon.  Maybe I can figure out how to watch a movie while on my trainer…..

On a separate note, Gayle will appreciate anyone who is willing to come spend a few hours with her on October 20th.  While I am racing, her job as support is much more difficult (as in BORING).  She will just be sitting and waiting for me to breeze by for a minute or so, then she will be back to waiting.  So, if anyone is available to hang out with her, I’m sure she will love the company.

You can keep up with my training here on my blog.  I will keep it updated as best I can.

I want to say a special thanks to Bramble Berry for choosing me to be a part of their Bramble Berry Athletic Club.  It’s very exciting to be a part of this group!

Well, I’m going to get on my bike….it’s a great day for a ride.

Still tri’in

Jenn

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Just 5 More Minutes, Mom!

December 7, 2009

I’ll admit it, instead of getting up when I should have this morning, I pulled the covers up and slept for another hour!  And boy did it feel good.  It was cold out, and warm in bed and I was tired.  I think the extra hour of sleep helped with my running this morning though.  Lately, I have not been feeling motivated to run.  I go out every day, but it’s only because Wrigley sits and stares at me with his sad eyes and makes me get up and take him on his run.  He’s extrememly difficult to resist.

So, this morning, I have been doing some research on the sleep needs of a person training for a marathon.  (Or triathlon, or 5K, or whatever a person happens to be training for.)  Here are some key things that I read which I already knew, it’s just nice to have them refreshed in your memory. 

  • Getting enough sleep boosts your immune system.  These days, when the Swine Flu, other flu strains and scores of colds are running rampant, a strong immune system is critical.
  • Getting enough sleep improves athletic performance.  Since I’m training for a marathon and future triathlons, good athletic performance seems important.
  • Getting enough sleep improves mental clarity.  Having a fit mind is important while training because you are more in tune with your feelings, both physical and mental. 
  • Getting enough sleep improves your attitude.  Some days, the only thing keeping you going is a smile and a good attitude.  Being rested ensures that you will be able to go the extra mile.

  For all of these, the term “enough sleep” was used.  So, how much is enough?  It varies from person to person, but the average is from 7 - 8 hours a night.  Reserach has shown that adults that get much more or less than  7 good hours of sleep a night have a higher mortality rate.  Adults who sleep closer to 7 hours have lower mortality rates.

And remember – quality counts too!

Still tri-in’

Jenn

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In this podcast I talk about using fartlek training to increase my speed, and also mention the benefits of training using perceived exertion instead of a heart rate monitor.  Both things are great additions to your training without having to spend money or drive somewhere to get it done.

In my 3 miles this morning I was very please with the addition of the speed training.  First, it showed me that I can run faster. I’m not really stuck at the same slow pace even though sometimes it feels like I am.  Here are my times for today.

Distance: 3 miles

Total Time: 55:25

Mile 1: 18:48

Mile 2: 18:40 minutes

Mile 3: 17:56 minutes

Average Pace: 18:28

My average is almost a minute faster than a few days ago.  I think I have the speed in me, at least some of it, but for whatever reason have just been plodding along.  Now I know I can bring it up a notch and be successful!

[podcast]http://www.fat2triathlete.com/podcast/VA024_016KBPS_060101_083849.MP3[/podcast]

Hope you enjoy the podcast, it will be the first of many along my journey

Still tri-ing

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