Tuesday, July 29, 2014

If I Can Do That…

The RFO (Race Freak Out) has finally settled in. I knew it had to come sooner or later. Up until this point I was feeling more excitement than nerves, but now things flip flopped.

My son Sam asked how I was feeling.

Him: How are you feeling?
Me: Excited. But, nervous.
Him: Why are you nervous? You know you can do it.
Me: Yeah, but I also know I’m going to suffer. <(which is funny that I’m scared of that because that is kind of in a sick way why I do it. To suffer, challenge myself then to be victorious!)

I think I am also putting a certain amount of pressure on myself to beat my time from Ironman Florida in November, which was 12 hours, 50  minutes.


I don’t know why I think I have to do that. Settle down you damn over achiever.

The two courses are so different – as in - apples and oranges, pee and poop, beach and mountains. Boulder will be much more difficult, particularly the 112 mile bike which is the bulk of the day (4,400 feet of climbing). I think it would help a lot for me to let that go and just do what I can and take it as it comes. That sounds very mature, doesn’t it?

I got this email from one of our coaches today, and it came in the nick of time (<where does that expression come from? How come it is not the “Beth of Time” or the “Sam of Time?”).

Final Words of Wisdom

Have courage.  This distance is challenging, but each one of you has it inside of you to have an amazing race.  You've done all of the hard work, and all you have to do now is put yourself out there and believe.  Believe that you have it in you, believe that you are capable, and believe that it will happen.

I also watched this video of the Florida ridiculous swim start and it got me excited. If I can do that I think I can do most things (I am the one in the pink cap):

5 more days!!!! More to come on goals, indigestion, etc later this week.


Saturday, July 26, 2014

I Almost Committed a Felony

Vacation has come and gone. I am now staring Ironman Boulder in the face with only 8 days to go. Below is the scene of the finish line – it is ready for all of the elated, dehydrated, crawling, puking, smiling athletes that will cross over it:

I am soooo excited!

Let’s talk vacation!!

Well, the only way to use frequent flier tickets to get to Phoenix was to get up in the middle of the night to leave on a 6:00 a.m. flight. I hate to fly, but I have heard the best/safest time to fly is in the morning. At least we had that going for us.

Why do I hate to fly? I don’t know. Something about being squeezed into a tin can with 200 other grumpy people (and their luggage) and flying 35,000 up in the sky. It just does not make sense to me how any of that works.

At least we had a nice sunrise.

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We got to Phoenix at 6:45 a.m. Nothing else to do but eat. Ken is tired, annoyed and hangry. Emma is confused. Sam is put-out. I am just happy to be on the ground. Family selfie at its best.

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We toured Arizona State.

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It was fun except for 113 degree weather made me melt and sweat. We walked to Mill Street and I saw where I will go one morning if I make a mistake the night before:

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Do you think if you are born with a name like “Tattoff” your destiny is set? Like, if you are born with the name Chris P. Bacon you will own a butcher shop or if you are born with the last name Flasid you will be a sex therapist?

The kids actually got along just dandy. They do better when we are on trips than when we’re at home. See? Sam is only shoving the bottle up Emma’s nose, not hitting her over the head with it.

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I spent some time on the bike that goes nowhere.

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We road-tripped to Vegas from Phoenix. This next picture epitomizes the “only seen in Vegas” philosophy. What is it, you may ask? Why, it’s a dancing penis (and testicles)! I am not sure why that guy is laying down in front of the penis. What do you think?

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When we checked in at our hotel, I did my usual and said it was our 19th anniversary, so did they have any upgrades? (in my defense it was our 19 year anniversary in June). They put us in a room on the 31st floor with a view of the Bellagio fountains and the Strip. Not bad! The kids’ room faced the highway. Tough break.

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This next picture should prove to you I really am a mother who loves her children. I’m pretty sure they barely remember me after 4 months of Ironman training.

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Sam and Emma kept putting this in front of the elevator. I don’t know where they got their tendency to always want to prank people.

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I was almost asked to leave the pool because of these ten things:

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I honestly don’t think my feet have ever been uglier. Between the fingerish toes, callouses, blisters, black toenails and toe jam, I am committing a FEET-lony (get it? felony?)

As I kid I always loved to do this in the pool. I have passed this along to my children.

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My trip consisted of the two C’s. Corn nuts and chardonnay in a plastic cup. CLASSY!

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We broke down and decided to spend a million dollars and ride the new High Roller observation wheel. I got advance tickets online, so it was actually kind of affordable. I paid for the tickets by standing on the Strip in a penis costume.


Yes, these  pods really do hold 40 people.

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At the top:

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Christmas card?

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I did not get in all the training I wanted. I ran and biked a few days. The Vdara Hotel was supposed to (according to reviews) have a lap pool and it did not (<actually the pool there really stank as far as Vegas pools go so we went to the Aria). I missed all of my swims. Oh, well. (<I know I seem laid back about it. I was not. I had to have Ken convince me a missed workout was not going to kill me).

8 days to go!!


Ever met anyone with a funny name? Two of my friends in high school (sisters) were named Cheddar and Swiss.

Are you taking a vacation this summer? Give details! This is it although Ken and I are doing the EPIC relay in the Tetons in a couple of weeks.

Do you have a tattoo you LOVE? Or do you hate it and want it removed by Dr. Tattoff? I am considering an M-Dot after Boulder. We will see.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Best Recovery Tip: Hot Dogs and Beer

I will tell you what makes me very happy. I just finished my last BIG workout for Ironman Boulder, which means I have officially entered the taper phase of training.

There are so many areas of my life I have been neglecting with all of this crazy training (including but not limited to daily hygiene – shaving in particular, my offspring and cleaning toilets – not sure how long that skid mark has been there) so I’ll be glad to restore some sense of normalcy.

Today’s workout kicked my ass. Really. We started with a the 2 mile Bare Bones swim at the Boulder Reservoir. The swim actually went pretty well for me. I took my time and relaxed into my stroke and let my mind wander until I realized I was off course then I had to regroup.

At the swim start:


I did not mean to give the finger bomb. Really, I didn’t.


I think I was nervous about the swim and my body knew that and just acted out without my consent.

The swim took me 1:04, then it was off on the bike for 70 very hot miles with no freaking shade. 95 degrees is not my favorite temperature for training.

Four hours later, I hopped off the bike (well, I did not hop, it was more like I slithered and slid) and went out for a 4 mile run.

Again no shade. The last mile I had goose bumps and could feel my body trying to cool down, but things were too overheated at this point. I finished and sat in my car with the A/C blaring and ice in my pants, drinking chocolate milk. I waited for my friend Marie who was a bit beside me on the run. She didn't show up. I got kind of worried imagining her dying from heat exhaustion. As I went to look for her, I see her still running, a beer in one hand, a hot dog in the other. She said she found a party by the lake and asked for food and beer. Now you know why I love her.

Total miles for the day: 76

Total time: 5 hours, 44 minutes

Would you like some salt for your margarita? Come on over!


After seeing Marie with her beer and hotdog, I came home and made a hotdog and had a beer. I like to copy my friends. I didn’t even change first and got my body schmega all over the couch. My family will be glad when this is all over with.


Thoughts as I enter taper: This has been a strong training cycle for me. No injuries. Not too much fatigue. No missed workouts. Minimal crying and tantrums. Bring on August 3!!

Off on vacation! Have a great week!


Friday, July 18, 2014

9 Ways To Train While Traveling (& Still Have a Vacation)

One of my philosophies is “work hard so you can play hard.” That is why I bust my butt all day working, training and caring for little people and hairy animals, then I plant myself on the couch and drink wine and eat popcorn every night starting at 8:00 p.m. That is my version of “play.”

The same goes for vacations. I like to work out while on vacation so that I can also play around a lot. I also work out on vacation because – call me crazy - I love to experience different climates, routes, gyms and extras while travelling.  Such as this luxury toilet I found at the top of Boreas Pass in Breckenridge:


It’s one thing to run while you’re traveling. That’s fairly easy to do. Just pack your shoes, shorts and shirt and get on Map My Run to find favorite routes in the area you are traveling to. It gets more interesting, however, when you need to incorporate swimming and biking. It’s not like you can stowaway your bike in your suitcase very easily. Maybe they should invent an inflatable bike for travelers.

Monday morning I’m going to Phoenix and then onto Las Vegas (yes, we are the only family who travels to the desert at the end of July). Although Ironman taper starts on Monday (this is one taper I am really looking forward to), I still have 9 hours worth of workouts for the week.


Given this, here are my tips for tackling your complicated training while travelling:

1. Book hotels that have lap pools and/or fitness centers. Our Phoenix hotel doesn’t have a lap pool but our hotel in Vegas does (Vdara). They both have nice fitness centers. Better yet, stay on the beach and swim and run there (below is the lap pool at a place we stayed in Mexico. Do you see me?).


2. Stay hydrated and bring snacks. I am always hungry. I feel like I constantly have stuff in my mouth that I am chewing. I have water bottles strewn all over my car, garage and home. Traveling will be no different.

3. Wear compression socks in the car/on the plane. Keep your blood moving and be vigilant about recovery!


4. Sleep. Just because you are traveling doesn’t mean you give up rest. I’m taking earplugs and an eye mask.


5. Don’t stress about moving stuff around. I’m usually a slave to following the plan exactly, but when life gets in the way, you can’t be all anal about it. Fit it in where you can (see how I did that? No sweat).


6. Pack lightly and KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid). I bring one pair of running shorts and one sports bra and rinse them out. I don’t care if I smell. I’m never going to see any of these people again (or in this guy’s case, just bring your tuxedo speedo):

7. Be aware that traveling is a stress on the body, so don’t overdo it.

8. Cut yourself a break. If you have to miss a work out to spend the day playing blackjack or riding the High Roller, so be it.

9. Fill in your travel companions. Let people know you are going to be training so that they don’t freak out because you leave the room at 5 a.m. for a run.

And, this has nothing to do with training, but I loved this article on “35 Genius Travel Tips that Will Change Your Life Forever.” I can’t say my life is changed forever, but there are some good hints.



Do you run/train while on vacation? Do you have a training travel tip?

What’s one thing we should do while in Phoenix? We are touring ASU, but we’ll have some extra time.


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

2014 Boulder Peak Triathlon Race Report

Sorry for the delayed race report. I am positive you were paralyzed just wondering when the heck it would be posted.

I have been a bit busy. Today Sam had four wisdom teeth pulled. Here he is still waking up, but awake enough to send peace out into the world:


Is it pathetic that I love feeding him yogurt and wiping off his face just like in the good old days? I draw the line at breast suckling and diaper changing, though.


Then I had to spend some time reading this about a dog’s last day (so reminded me of Lucky’s last day) and watching this about the newest in running hydration devices for men (or could be for a woman if you enjoy strap-ons).

So…the RACE.


It was an Olympic distance (1.5 K swim, 27 mile bike, 10K). Our coaches gave us options regarding whether we wanted to go all out or not. They said if we were feeling fatigued or injured to use it as a training day or a day to work on one or two disciplines. I was feeling up to racing, so that’s what I did!

My approach to the swim was to chill the hell out, since my last 2 mile open water swim sucked. I warmed up before hand. I also got a sleeveless wetsuit used for $40 and I swear this helped so much with mobility. I stayed very relaxed during the swim with thoughts of cranking it out on the bike and run. The last 100 yards I swam through a mess of thick and gross algae. I am still picking it out of my teeth.


Swim – 1.5K (1,640 yards) – 29 minutes

What I realized when I got on the bike was that I had a bit of catching up to do. Our swim wave was all of the 40-49 year old women –and this age group is ridiculous. So speedy and fit. I think most of them were already ahead of me.


Actually, all of Boulder is speedy and fit. I need to start racing in Mississippi.  Not to say Mississippians are not fit or anything.

I passed a fair number of women in my AG – and only got passed by 1. I knew I was making up some time. The entire ride I pushed myself and I wondered if I would have anything left for the run. I downed 2 GU Roctanes and that gave me kind of a boost. I love caffeine. And electrolytes.

Bike – 27 miles – 1:18 – 19.9 mph average

I set out on the run just hoping to get in under an hour. I was not wearing a Garmin, so I had no clue about pace and just went based on feel. It was getting hot and one of my coaches yelled at me to cool off with water before I got over heated. I dumped a bunch of water on my head and shoved ice in my non-existent cleavage. In the last half mile some guy came up beside me in a golf cart to tell me a woman was 30 seconds behind trying to catch me. Thanks dude. That was the motivation I needed to spice it up to the finish.

Run – 6.2 miles – 50 minutes – 8 min/mile average

Final Results: 2:43 minutes. 13/70 in age group

I am very happy that in my finishing picture I am doing exactly what you are not supposed to do and looking at my watch. I also am interested in how my foot can actually bend in that direction.


I was happy with that. Obviously I have not been training for shorter races, so I was glad to have the tiniest bit of speed still left in me.  This is my last race before Ironman Boulder, which is in 19 days. Did you hear that?? 19 DAYS.


I just ordered our shirts:










Yes, I do make my family and friends wear these because HOT DAMN I have been training for this race for months and I want/need support on race day!!! And lime green is very easy to spot when you are delirious and dehydrated. Plus it will remind me of margaritas (with salt).

Post-race on Sunday my mom had us over for dinner. Yes, this happened (and there might have been wine involved):


Home made spinach pie, lamb shish-kabobs, pork souvlaki, fresh fruit, roasted potatoes, rice/edamame salad, Greek salad, and Heinz ketchup. I think my mom deserves a lime green shirt!


Best dish your mom makes or made when you were young? Chicken and dumplings. She also makes a killer chocolate cake (Wacky Cake!).

Do you still have your wisdom teeth? Nope. I got them out when I was 17. I thought it was pretty painless, but my mom told me this weekend that I was a wreck. Must have blocked it out.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

6 Thing Saturday

1. Race #1: I ran a 5K this morning. Sometimes it’s fun to run fast. But, then sometimes at mile 1.5 when you feel like you want to puke and die you remember that you don't like 5Ks very much.

The course was short by .1, but I got a 21:30 (7:12 mile/min pace), which is good for me. The last 2 miles I was running right behind a girl who I would guess was 10 years old. She was very speedy. I was impressed, but then got annoyed because every time I tried to pass her, she would deliberately cut me off. She did this about 90 times.  She was pretty cute and I liked her competitive spirit, so I let it slide.

2. Splurge: Ken and I went to the grocery store and farmer’s market afterwards for a splurge (Heidi loves donuts):


This was hands down the best almond croissant I’ve ever had (have I ever told you that almond croissants are my favorite pastry ever?). It was from a bakery called Izzios.


3. Stirrups: At the grocery store I ran into the doctor who delivered my babies. Kind of weird to have small talk with the one who has seen you screaming while in stirrups.

4. Kids: We got home and Ken asked why I threw away all the Oreos. What is he talking about? I looked in the trash and found this:


Yes, apparently in middle of the night one of my blessed children licked the white stuff out of the middle of many Oreos and threw the rest away. I don’t even know what to say. This has got to be the epitome of being spoiled and wasteful. And childish! (although it is something I might do. I would just hide the evidence a bit better).

5. Farts: Someone sent me a link to a new study that found that smelling farts may prevent cancer. This is very good news as we apparently do a lot of cancer prevention around here with the number of farts that are expelled. I want everyone to know that I fart because I am trying to save lives (I need that on a bumper sticker).

6. Race #2: I am on my way to Boulder to pick up my packet for the Boulder Peak Triathlon, which is tomorrow. Who is racing with me?

What is the most exasperating thing your kids did this week?

Favorite pastry?


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Ironman Boulder Training Week #15: 18 Mile Run + 112 Mile Bike!


Just had to get that little burst of Heidi cuteness out of the way. This is the dog that we rescued over a year ago who we wouldn’t allow on the couch, but THAT FACE!! We are suckers.

I’m a bit late with this training update. Mostly because I’ve been…well…training my ass off. Duh! And taking pictures of Heidi. And eating my face off because that is what you do when you never stop being hungry. Or, HANGRY (so hungry you are angry).

With only four weeks to go, this past week was a solid week of training for me and a confidence booster.


Monday: Rest
Tuesday: Bike 25 miles
Wednesday: Swim 2,700 yards, run 18 miles
Thursday: Bike 16 miles
Friday:  Swim 2,700 yards
Saturday: Run 9.5 miles
Sunday: Bike 112 miles

Total Miles: Swim 3 + bike 153 + run 27.5 = 183.4
Total Workouts
: 7
Total Hours: 16

The highlights for the week were the 18 mile run and the 112 mile bike of the entire Ironman Boulder course. You can read about the run HERE.

The ride. What can I say about the ride?


  • 98 degrees
  • No shade
  • 7 hours total, 6:20 riding time
  • I did not pee once
  • 1,800 calories consumed
  • About 250 oz of liquid consumed
  • 12 salt stick caps taken

The 7 hour view (from aero bars):

Edward Dageforde's photo.

This ride went really well for me. I nailed my fueling and although it was HOT, the heat didn’t get to me too much. I know the conditions were very close to how they will be on race day, so it was good to know I could knock it out without dying.

Here are some fancy zig-zag salt sweat stains for your viewing pleasure. Please let me know if you are out of table salt and I will come over and shake my shirt over your french fries.


One of the guys, Tom, from my training group, Fast Forward, was out there every 30mils or so with cold water. I think I love him.  Another group IPA Endurance set up a huge aid station half way for any riders out on the course.


Yes, there were peanut M&Ms and peanut butter cups. And oranges. Screw the oranges, I went for the candy like the lush that I am.


Ken was at mile 88 with ice, water, Coke and GUs. I love him too. Marie looks like she is taking a dump, but she is stretching (yeah, sure she is).


Let me give her a little shoulder pat:


So…where do we go from here? Tonight is a 12-13 mile run. This weekend I have the Boulder Peak Triathlon (Olympic distance – 1.5K swim, 22 mile bike, 10K), which I’ll do on tired-ish legs (no taper. Not yet!). Next week is our final really big week (with a monster brick 2 mile swim-80 mile bike-4 mile run), then it is TT (Taper Time).

My bib number is:


Which clearly means everyone is going to be stopping me to ask for information. Get it? 4-1-1?


Do you let your dog on the furniture, let him/her in your bed, let him/her hump you? We draw the line at the bed, but other than that Heidi has the run of the house.

What’s the best workout you had this week? It’s a toss up between the long run and the long ride. Both went better than expected.