Monday, December 29, 2008


Now that the brunt of the dreaded holiday season is behind me I am starting to regain some sanity and balance. Key word starting.

The actual holiday was relatively low key. There was some hope of playing in the snow on Christmas eve and/or Christmas day, but as my ribs are still uber sore it was taken off the schedule. Instead the running buddy took me for a nice dinner on Christmas eve, followed by drinks at the local open 365 days a year dive bar. Hey, beggars can't be choosers. We also did a little gift exchanging, which while unexpected, and sort of overwhelming, was awesome. The running buddy recruited my coworker Geoff to snoop in my stuff to see what size I would need (those scoundrels!! and I was sitting there while this snooping took place) so that he could get me the Patagonia R2!!I love it and all its furry goodness!!! Now truth be told, the gift was a little selfish. Every time the running buddy wore his R2 I would insist on petting him. I was told now that I have my own I can stop doing that. I'd like to think of this as the running buddy's loss and my gain really. My present for him was a vintage Old Style t-shirt (ask me sometime about the backpack full of skunky Old Style...).
Not to be outdone, I also made sure to share one of my guilty pleasures with him. I subjected the running buddy to watching Crossroads, the high quality Britney flick. Love it. Who doesn't love a lil Britney now and again?!

Other than the fine cinematography, the best part of the evening was tie between the fact the running buddy wrapped my present, which for him was making a MAJOR effort, and the chill hanging out time. So it really isn't a close tie, or a tie at all, but I did love the wrapping jobs (Christmas paper complete with PINK bows). Its definitely a landslide win by the quality time. Thanks running buddy.

I slept most of Christmas day. I think I rolled out of bed finally for good around 4 or so. Sometimes a girl just needs her beauty sleep. After some eating, putzing around the apartment, and primping, the running buddy took me to a holiday thang at a friend's house. There were Old Fashioneds and Trivial Pursuit. Oh, and way too much food. But it was good time. I tell ya, that running buddy really stepped up his game this holiday. Who know he was such a swell guy?!

Friday we ventured out for a little run action. It had actual warmed up quite a bit, and by that I mean it went from 0 to low 30's. I have determined during this run that while the snow makes for a lower impact more forgiving experience, I really dislike running on ice. And seeing as this year Madison has opted not to do a good job of keeping the paths and such clear, everything is unpleasantly icy. I was also hoping that running would aggravate my ribs less, but it seems as though everything is still bothering it. I guess that's the price to pay to be epic.

OH!! The other redeeming quality of this years holiday bs is that my dear friend from college was back in the state and we got to spend some quality time together. Jamie and here bf Franklin had taken the time out of their fancy schmancy NYC lifestyle to come back to Wisco for some family and friends time. And I got to hang out with them!!
Saturday the running buddy and I had high hopes for another run, but my ribs were still reeling and angry from the day before, so in the interest of not continuing to aggravate them we opted to lay low. Saturday night another one of my coworkers was in town and we all did dinner and drinks, followed by a birthday get together for another friend. Franklin was nice enough to let Jamie come out and play with me and have some quality girl time Saturday night, which was awesome! =D We've renewed our vows to keep in touch better and even made some future get together plans.
The weekend was wrapped up with brunch with Jamie, Franklin and friends, evening drinks with more in town friends, and one exhausted Katie!! How is it that with 4 1/2 days off I am even more tired than when I started?! I have my bike home finally from product testing and am looking to get back on the trainer, I found a master swim course in the area that sounds promising, and any day now my ribs will stop hurting enough to get out and get my run on.

Did I mention I'm laying off of snowboarding for a while....

Friday, December 19, 2008

Let it snow!

For those of you not living in the beautiful Midwest (riiiiight), you might not know that we've been getting all sorts of snowy awesomeness already this year. Last night we got something like 9 or 10" of powdery goodness, on top of the decent stash of snow that had fallen in the past 2 weeks. And I LOVE IT!

What does this mean for my training these days? Well, it means that there hasn't been much to speak of. Hey, I'm just being honest here people. I've been out playing in the snow, and recovering from my playing in the snow, as much as possible. Which, I might add, my coach does consider cross training, so I'm not being a complete bum... To make matters worse, my running buddy totally feeds my snow playing obsession by willingly chauffeuring me to the hill whenever we go.

Last week was my first time back on the board since last season, and it was incredible. It was like I'd never taken a summer break.
The snow was awesome and I looked good! Then Wednesday night we ventured out in the frigid temperatures to find that the snow was super icy and it turned out to be not so much fun. Especially un-fun when I decided to, while doing nothing even remotely impressive or cool, go head first into the ice and then flat on to my back on the sheet of ice. THWAP! I went down hard. There are bruises on parts of my body I didn't know even came into contact with anything. I laid there gasping for air my head spinning for sometime. Thank goodness for helmets or I don't know that I would've gotten up. Once I managed to successfully get air into my lungs I was up and moving again, confirming that nothing was dysfunctionally broken, but boy was I hurting.

So Thursday.... The smart person would opt to lay low and recover, right? Key word, smart. I apparently do not fall into that category. So while my rib cage was searingly painful with every breathe, and I still was unable to consistently focus my eyes, I made plans with the running buddy to head back to the hill. My coworker Geoff, cycling extraordinaire and voice of reason, told me that at the rate I was going I wasn't going to make it to Ironman 09. This did make me stop and think a little, but seriously, it had been a sunny great afternoon and with the temperatures promising to stay in the upper teens through the evening, how could I say no? Back to the hill we go. I secretly blame the running buddy and his conniving ways. My theory was that there was nothing a fist full of ibuprofen couldn't fix. I was sure to play it on the safe side, no epic crashes to speak of. But just the same, when I got home I was immobile with pain. Little or no sleep was had. Every move and roll I made jiggled my ribs and made me mutter some very unladylike things.

So what am I planning to do tonight? Head out to the hill of course!! Did you miss the part at the beginning where I said we just got another like 10" of powder??

Rest is for the weary!

And I swear, Scout's Honor, that as of January 1st my game plan and serious training will start. Coach Edde, you have my word on that!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008



So I am one of the lucky few that got into the 2009 Escape from Alcatraz through the application/lottery process. And I AM CRAZY EXCITED!!! But...

It just so happens that Escape from Alcatraz is the same weekend that I am registered to do teh Kansas 70.3. Of course. Just my luck. Grrrrr-umble! Decisions, decisions.

Do I go for the race I have been obsessed with and watched like a stalker for years or not? I'm already registered for Kansas, the logistics are much simpler, its closer, I'll be racing with friends and maybe have a few friends come down to see me.... Getting out to San Fran for the race could be quite the debacle and rather spendy. At most I'd have maybe one partner in crime with me. And I'd have to pay for hotel and everything else to boot.....but its a dream race oppurtunity in my world!!

What to do, what to do.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Even wonderful weekends have to end.

So all and all the past few days have been pretty rockstar. With the exception of an awful day at work on Friday, things were on the up and up. So rather than get bogged down with the ick that was work, I'm going to revel in the wonderfulness of the rest of it.Thursday night I made it out running with my running buddy. And um, he handed my ass to me! That's right boys and girls, handed it to me. Its just not fair!! I'm suppose to be the better runner. That's the only thing I've had on him. Grr. It looks like I've found new motivation to get out and running.

Friday was the work holiday party. Nothing to get too worked up about. There were drinks, dinner (holy salty potatoes batman!), and a magician! That's right. For the "adult" party there were card tricks, and rope tricks and more. How exciting! Riiiight. But afterwards the usual suspects, some special guests (yeah Jenn and Geoff!!) and I headed to Jolly Bob's for our own par-tay. Some fruity cocktails, some dancing and some inappropriate behavior was had by all. Awesome.

Saturday started with sleeping in. Wonderful delicious sleeping in. Followed by my first day on the snow this season. WOO WOO! That's right. It was time for some cross training snowboard style. My running buddy headed out to the local hill for a few hours of frolicking in the snow. And for it being my first time back on the board this year, I dominated. That's right, you take your Thursday night run and I'll raise you some fun in the snow where I look sassy good. It was snow-licious. If only I could cross train on the snow more often.

Later Saturday night my coworker Darren's holiday party. Having just finished the majority of their remodeling on their house, Darren and his wife Lisa decided it was time to throw a little get together. Talk about a cool couple. Great hobbies, funny stories, and all around nice people. I think I want to be them when I grow up. I attempted to whip up some asiago cheese dip for the shindig, but as I am a questionable cook at best, I was sure to bring some beer as well just in case. There was food, beverages, and good company. I got to check out Darren's fleet of bikes and bike and ski shop in the basement....can we say jealous?! I have to admit though, I was a pretty lame gal. I think I managed to stay up and quasi-social until 11'ish, and that was after sleeping on the way home from the hill earlier. It was home and too bed relatively early for this party pooper.

Today I was a lean mean cleaning machine! Dirt was no match for me. I'm hoping to get out for a run yet this evening, but we'll see how the night progresses.

All in all, it was a near perfect weekend. One's like this don't come along very often. Good friends, good times, great weekend. Sigh. But all good things must come to an end. Here's hoping for another weekend like this is the near future.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

101 Excuses...

I'm finding myself in a winter slump. Having been off and on sick for the better part of the last month, my training has been sporadic at best lately. My coach Edde, that's right buddy I'm calling you out, told me to rest up and recover because as of January 1 its go time. At first I scoffed at his take it easy advice, but pretty soon feeling run down got the better of me and slacking off became the norm. My trainer is sitting bike-less in my apartment and my running stuff hasn't been touched since last Thursday. Getting home and trying to get out and run when its pitch black dark and brrr-tastically cold out does nothing to help the motivation (and yes, I could run in the morning, but the same cold dark complaints apply then too.....).

So as January 1 is just over 2 weeks away now I am trying desperately to get my act together. I don't feel as though my goals are unattainable given the time frame, but if I don't get my act together soon this could get UGLY!

One of my coworkers, Jon, is out there running at lunch. Another one of my coworkers, Geoff, not only is our product testing guru during work hours, but is still logging trainer time out side of work like an animal. I don't know how these kids are doing it. I keep thinking maybe if I turn my hour lunch into a run or quality trainer time here at work I'll get in my workouts like these . But then I realize that I would have to shower in the gross showers at work, or worse yet, sit and be the smelly kid at work the rest of the day. So yes, there is an excuse for EVERYTHING!

Lucky for me, the usual suspect of a running buddy is making me stick to the Thursday night run tonight. I'm hoping for a solid 4-5m. but that will all depend on how I feel once we're out the door. Hopefully I can put the running buddy through their paces as per usual.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Maybe the holidays do exist...

As anyone that knows me well can attest to, I am not a holiday person. For reasons all my own, I just do not care for them. In fact, if I could just fast forward through the end of November and all of December and wake on New Year's Day, I'd be just fine with that. But every once in a while I come across something makes me second guess my renouncing of this time of year.

In making my rounds on the usual blogs I stumbled upon the blog The Mother Letter Project. While I am not a mother, nor do I have plans on becoming one any time int he near future, this definitely touched my heart. The thought that goes into this project and how this family is celebrating the holidays this year is wonderful and makes be believe that the true spirit of the holidays does still exist.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Get out the VOTE!

Looking for a little motivation?
Want to share what keeps you motivated?

Check out what gets fellows athletes through the trainer months and vote for your favorite motivating mantra!

Kansas 70.3

How did I forget the most exciting news of last week?!?!

I am officially registered for the 2009 Ironman Kansas 70.3!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Another Weekend Sans Training

Well more or less without training.

After my cold run on Thursday evening, I went into to work to find out that I would be product testing for the day. Which in my line of work, means riding my bike on a trainer for the majority of the day. Fun, double fun!

I've pretty openly expressed my distaste for trainer time. It's just soooooooo boring! I want to go, to feel like I'm accomplishing something. And when product testing at work I don't even get to rock out to the music of my choice or drown my sorrows in bad television. I just ride, sweat, and space out. What I have learned in this is that my butt is in fact tough enough to sit on my saddle for 6+ hours, and that comes as quite a relief knowing that I will most definitely not being finishing the 122m IM course in anything lest than that.

Initially my plan for Friday night was to hit up the freshly fallen snow with my running buddy for some "cross training" snowboard style. But much to my dismay, after my long day spent cranking away on a trainer I was a little too friend to much other than sit. So in lieu of playing in the snow we opted to go to a movie and veg (4 Christmases, funny funny, highly recommend and I don't even like the holidays).

Seeing as I had heard from a friend of mine earlier in the day on Friday about an epic trail run on Saturday, I was ok with resting for the night and hitting the trails with gusto on Saturday morning. The plan was 9am at the arb for a 2hr run. To be honest, I knew I could only hang with his pace for about an hour before I was liable to tip over out of sheer exhaustion. But a run is a run. What I didn't anticipate happening was sleeping right through the run on Saturday morning. Apparently I was way more tired from the day before than I thought.

The rest of my weekend went to wining and dining our visiting dealers, including a trip to Lambeau on Sunday. While this sounds great in theory, and it is in many many regards, it does in fact have its downfalls. First, it makes for a loooong weekend with little free time. Second, it's tiring! And lastly, while delicious, it means all food and all beverage all the time. When you eat your way through the weekend its definitely necessary to get some solid training in there (and more than just curling your beverage of choice to your mouth).

Now its Monday, and I am still exhausted, and we have some wicked winter weather headed our way. I'm hoping to get in a run of sorts before the freezing rain and snow sets in....

Friday, December 5, 2008

Battling the Brrr!

So after all the drama caused at my birthday by my running buddy, this buddy is back and wanting to run with me again. Hmmmm. While I am going to proceed with caution, I am certainly not one to shun a willing training partner. It's always nice to have someone to train with (especially one that you can put through their paces as your own personal payback....), so I concede to make an after work running date.

So Thursday night we both get all layered and geared up and head out for a nice leisurely run of 4 or so miles. It was slippery and slow going. Is it normal to have your times increase when combating the snow, ice and cold? I hope so because mine most certainly have. Anyways, the run itself was uneventful and good. I had actually really missed our weekly run, just don't tell the runn9ing buddy that. Having someone to get you out the door when the conditions are less than ideal and keep your pace up (because you cannot let them be faster) is always good. Not to mention our bantering, while not always witty, is certainly always entertaining. So while this running buddy o' mine is far from on my A list, they've certainly scored some points by running in the snow with me.

Post run I get home to stretch, to find that as soon as I stop moving its like intsa-freeze! Hypothermia had set in people, and I was C.O.L.D. I think the problem is that even with all my fancy schmancy wicking thermo way too expensive gear, I never seem to get my layers quite right. I'm always cold when I first venture out, 10 or so minutes in I start to warm up nicely, but given another 10mins or so I am sweating like a criminal! Which means that as soon as I stop and the wind blows I am miserable! Worst is my legs, specifically my thighs and butt. No matter how many layers I have one they are always cold. And let me be the first to reassure that they are well insulated to start with. So I am at home trying to stretch and I am violently chattering away. While the 1/2hour shower I took next certainly did help, I was cold the rest of the night.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Marathons and Duathlons and Triathlons, OH MY!

I'm starting to plan, or I suppose think about is a more realistic spin, my 2009 race season....and I need help!! 

The only sure things on the list are the Kansas 70.3 in June and Ironman Wisconsin in September.  I really want to do a marathon before Ironman to, you know, build my running confidence.  And I'm pretty set on the Door County Triathlon in July....  Beyond that, who knows!  I hear there's some pretty great early season races in North Carolina (and there's pretty cool cats who live there).

If you check out my race list on the side you'll see what I'm thinking about doing.  Obviously the list needs to be narrowed down a wee bit, but I'm looking for feedback on what races to do, who's doing what and where ya'll be headed out to see me!