Work Hard, Race Hard, Play Hard

Work Hard, Race Hard, Play Hard

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Ironman Whistler - "Mind Over Matter"

Ironman Whistler – “Mind over Matter”

I promised myself I would get this race report written before I took off for my next and last race of the season.  I was sooo close J  But at least its done before my next race!

First of all, before I get into the details of race day, I wanted to mention that Ironman Canada was an amazing race.  Whistler was a great venue for Ironman, and I loved everything about it! I highly recommend this race!

Secondly, I believe I executed the best possible race I could on the day and was extremely happy with my result. I hate excuses, so I don’t want anything I say in this report to be misinterpreted as an excuse.  Ironman is a long day and so many things can and will go wrong for everyone and its how you deal with those obstacles that will determine your race. “Mind over matter” as they say! This is why I love Ironman! You don’t always have to be the fastest, you just need to the toughest to have a good day.  For this reason, I believe my strengths prevail in Ironman. It’s no secret I am not a “fast” swimmer, or have the strongest bike, however I am confident in my ability to run a strong marathon. I also know that I am able to stay “mentally” strong and really dig deep when I need to.  As much as I love running….running 26.2 miles after biking 112 is never easy, and it hurts a lot….but I am able to just focus and “embrace the pain.”  I had quite a few things go wrong during the race and I will talk about them not as an excuse, but as an example of the things that will go wrong, and how I dealt with those issues.

As beautiful as Whistler is and as much as I loved the course and the experience, this course was definitely not a course that suits my strengths. I knew this going into the race and it was drastically different than my other Ironmans to date.  I typically love races with hot, humid, flat, windy conditions and non wetsuit swims.   Whistler was a wetsuit swim, HILLY, and not very hot or humid.   But, sometimes its fun to challenge yourself and see how you will fare on a different course/conditions, and how you will do on a course that is the exact opposite of what you “like to race.”

My Mom and I flew to Vancouver Wednesday before the race. We stayed in Vancouver Wed. night and spent Thursday morning exploring Vancouver. Neither of us had ever been so it was fun to check it out. We ran in Stanley Park, checked out the Lululemon stores (I am lulu obsessed) and then we drove up to Whistler later that day.  We checked into our hotel, The Fairmont, in the Upper Village, which was a great hotel and very convenient for walking to/from everything.   Friday was spent doing all the typical pre-Ironman activities.  I went for a ride with the Tribike transport crew, checked-in,  drove part of the bike course and attended the pre-race meeting.  Friday night Sissy arrived from San Diego. Yay! Having my mom and sissy at my races makes me so happy.
Views from Stanley Park

Silly in front of the Hollow Tree in Stanley Park
Clearly Mom and Sissy are the cheerleaders in the family!

As always, the day before the race is over before you know it and it always ends up being busier than you think! I went to bed super nervous and excited to race. I knew I had put in the work and I was ready to just get out there and do my best!
Green Lake in Whistler.. run course scenery!
Checking out Whistler..

Onto the race details!

The Swim: (1:11,  25th AG)
I typically do not like wetsuit swims. This may seem strange since swimming isn’t my strength, so you would think I would want all the help I could get, but in reality, wetsuits make me claustrophobic! I literally feel as if I’m going to hyperventilate and the sleeves make my arms feel tired!  Well, for Whistler, I was lucky enough to be trying out the TYR Freak wetsuit (Thanks TYR!) and I can honestly say it was the best wetsuit I have ever worn. It was comfy, I didn’t feel as if I would hyperventilate, and the comfort in the shoulders/arms didn’t make my arms feel as tired.   As for the swim itself, it was my typical Ironman swim, where I feel as if I am getting beat up by the men.  Oh how I wish there was a separate Mens/Womens  start for amateurs in Ironman.  Unfortunately, when I exited the swim, a male athlete knocked into me, I went flying and landed on my right shoulder…the same shoulder that I had surgery on for a broken clavicle and torn ligaments 8 weeks before Kona in 2010.  And it hurt, it hurt a lot!  But I continued on…time to bike!  As for the 1:11, I was satisfied with that. Since I shared with you my training schedule in my last blog, and my lack of swim training, I can’t expect a much faster time at this point J
Beautiful swim start backdrop!

Thanks TYR and MB for letting me try out this awesome wetsuit!

The Bike: (5:55, 15th AG)
Once onto the bike, I tried to ignore the pain in my shoulder, and just focus on pedaling.  The bike is a continual work in progress for me. And after taking 6 months off from cycling, I definitely felt out of shape getting back at it. But I have been putting in some work and feel that I have been making strides in training. I know I still have a ways to go to get it up there with my run, but I think I have been moving in the right direction! Thanks to all the coaches and training partners at Tailwind Endurance who keep me motivated for those 5:30 am classes! It has definitely been more fun than doing those solo trainer workouts in my apartment!  Ok back to the race…even though I felt prepared for the bike, I still knew it would be a tough day given the difficulty of this bike course and the 6000+ feet of climbing! I live in NYC and do a lot of my training on the computrainer and even most of my outdoor rides didn’t include this kind of climbing! But I have been training with power for the past couple of years and was planning to just focus on my watts! Well once onto the bike I spent the first few miles fiddling with my power meter and for some reason it just didn’t want to work! My initial thought was UGH!!  But after getting over the frustration, I got it together and knew I would be fine, I am very in tune with my body and am more than capable of racing by feel! The bigger issue was my shoulder, it was SERIOUSLY hurting! It hurt to raise my arm which made it difficult to take in my nutrition.  Being aero was very painful.  But, as I said…“Mind over matter.”   After driving the bike course and getting a little freaked out by all the climbing, I really thought a 6:30 bike time was in my future, so a 5:55 on this course for was a decent time for me. I know I’m capable of better, but was happy with this result at this point in my training.

Run (3:19, 5th AG, 2nd Fast Amateur run split)
As always, I was ecstatic to be off the bike and onto the run! My legs felt good, which was a good sign I didn’t go too hard on the bike! Again, the only problem was my shoulder, still KILLING me!   The run is a two loop course through the Whistler trails with a lot of twists and turns and wasn’t quite the “fast” course I was expecting.  I was able to see my Mom & Sissy a bunch of times which helped lift my spirits and keep me plugging along!   I have been running in Newtons for almost as long as I have been doing triathlons and I absolutely love them! I also always run without socks and I never have any issues with blisters..until Whistler.  At about mile 5 I started developing blisters on both feet that pretty much encompassed the tops and bottoms of my feet. It was beyond painful to run like this for 21 miles, but  “mind over matter.”  I suppose the upside was this pain helped me no longer think about the shoulder (sort of).  It was a hard run but I just focused on holding my pace and “embracing the pain.”   I passed a bunch of girls but had no idea where I was in my AG. I wasn’t chasing a Kona slot, or focusing on my place in my AG, but I just wanted to have my best possible race.  I ended up with a 3:19 marathon, which was good enough for 2nd fastest amateur run time and moved me up to 5th in my AG. This was my 2nd fastest Ironman marathon time and I again I was pleased with the result. I do know I have a “faster” ironman marathon in me though, and I’m even more motivated to chase it!
Happy to be out on the run!
I finished in 10:33, 5th in AG!  I literally couldn’t have been happier with this result. I gave the race everything I had both mentally and physically.  Ending up on the podium and a Kona slot were icing on the cake!
Post race with Mom and Sissy... you guys are the best.  xo

Back to Kona I go!  Woohooo!

Thoughts on Kona

Now I know I said earlier in the season that I had no intention of racing Kona this year even if I qualified. But of course as the season progressed, I started to shift my attitude and thinking that if I qualified, I would race.  I wouldn’t take a rolldown, but if I legitimately qualified, I would take my slot.  I didn’t put any pressure on myself and didn’t go into Whistler focused on qualifying for Kona.

There are a couple reasons for the change in plans:

1.     While long term goals are great, as I have learned in the past, life is unpredictable and doesn’t always turn out the way you expect or plan for. I could spend the next two years training to get back to Kona to try and finish top 5 in my AG and I could end up getting injured, or have a bike crash, or a 1000 other things could go wrong.  So sometimes, when life throws you an opportunity you have to take it. And that’s what I did with Whistler. I figured if it was meant to be, it would be.  

2.     If I don’t go to Kona this year, I may not have the ability to get back to the Big Island to race for a few years.  As I have mentioned in previous blogs, balance in my life is very important to me. And triathlon is truly a hobby, so I don’t want to sacrifice everything and everyone for triathlon.  Next year my Sissy is getting married in September I don’t want to worry about training for an Ironman during this important time in her life. I want to be fully involved and enjoy every minute with her without worrying about my training for Kona.  Also, I have another big athletic goal that I would like to achieve and this could take my focus away from Ironman for a few years.  To be determined on that, so I will share when/if I fully commit to this goal J

In any event, I made the decision, I took my slot, and I was off to the Big Island on Sunday for my 3rd start at the Ironman World Championships! I’m beyond excited, a little nervous about how my body (and my shoulder) will handle two Ironmans in 7 weeks, but I’m mentally ready to get out there and give it my best!!  And I’m so excited to be back racing in a nonwetsuit, hot and humid race J
Celebratory drinks with my biggest fans!

Not an Ironman race without the Buskos (and Morgan !)!

I have so many people to thank, without the support of my family, friends, coach, sponsors and training partners I wouldn’t be on my way to another Kona start.  Mom and help me throughout this journey so much, there is too much to write ;)  Brian Hammond.. you believed in me when I had stopped believing and you work around my crazy schedule!  Dad for helping me SO much with logistics lately when I have no time to deal with dropping off/picking up my bike etc.  Earl for keeping me challenged on the bike all those early mornings.  And my sponsors/supporters: Tribike Transport, Nuun, Sparkly Soul, Health Warrior and Newton.  

Thanks for reading!


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ironman Whistler - Pre race thoughts

So I had every intention of posting an update from Whistler, and I actually started writing one but… oops I never finished or posted.   So I am going to start off with these pre race thoughts and then follow up with the dirty deets of race day!

Pre- Race thoughts:

If you have been following along, you know I had a slow start to my season with a very long off season (6 months to be exact).  After Kona last year, I really had no idea if I would race AT ALL this year, but after taking some time off I did miss it, and slowly started getting back into training in March.  In April, I started working with my new coach Brian and began slowly getting myself back into shape.  However, since I had no plan after last season, this also meant I was not signed up for any races. This is a challenging predicament since races sell out a year in advance!  When the new Ironman Canada in Whistler was announced, I knew this was a race I wanted to do in the future, however at the time of sign up I just wasn’t able to commit myself to any races for 2013. Fast forward to early 2013 I started thinking that maybe I would like to do an Ironman later in the year and I also thought at this point that I had no intention of (even if I qualified) racing at either 70.3 World Champs or Kona. After Kona last year, I felt strongly that I didn’t want to attempt either of those races again until I had more time to dedicate to training so that I felt ready to compete at the level I know I am capable of.  So, I thought ok great year to do Whistler because I  didn’t have to worry about trying to Kona qualify earlier in the year.  Thankfully I landed myself an entry to Ironman Whistler and an Ironman on the calendar! 

I arrived in Whistler very nervous and excited to race.  While I was very nervous, it was a good emotion.  It's an emotion I haven’t felt pre race since before Ironman Cozumel in 2011 (hmm.. wouldn’t mind if this race resembles those race results).   I really felt like I had done the best I could fitting in training with the hours available to me and juggling my crazy job! 

There were a few main things that had been running through my head the weeks leading into race day, so I am going to break them out individually to help me keep this organized

1.  Is this sport passing me by?
     This is something I had been struggling with so much last year.
 2.  Sunday I will race my race.  If it’s not enough to get me on the podium or Kona.....I am ok with that.  I know I did all I could do for this race given my limited training time/work schedule.  Ok maybe I skipped a few swims, but besides that…
3. Thankful and appreciating the opportunity to race in this amazing place
4. There is no better compliment than hearing you inspire other people.
5.  Loving it again

Is this sport passing me by?
While I feel I did a good job most of the time just focusing on all that I could do in training and not on the things that I couldn’t do, I have to admit I still struggled at times with wondering how I could possibly stay relevant and competitive in this sport, as it seems the majority of the girls I am lining up against are able to train 20+ hours a week. Something that I just 100% do not have the ability to do even if I wanted to. With so many people going pro or simply training like a pro, how can I compete with my lame 10-12 hours a week.  Even though I trained similarly when I won the Amateur title at IMCoz in 2011 in 9:57, I still would get down on myself and often feel as if I wasn't doing enough! I tried to block this out and focus on just getting the work done day in and day out.  But it’s not always easy to do that.  For inquiring minds, this is what a typical training week looks like for me:

Monday – swim or day off ( I most always skip the swim and take the day off)
Tuesday – 1 hour computrainer workout
Wed -  interval or tempo run
Thurs.  – 1 hour computrainer workout
Friday -  easy run/swim.  ( I most often skip these workouts, and if I’m not skipping I’ll opt for easy run, except 3 weeks out from the race I will swim)
Sat – long bike…sometimes run off bike
Sunday – long run

There you have it folks…my 10/12 hours of Ironman training! 

Ironically, one day that this sort of seemed to be weighing heavily on my mind, I received an email from a coach/friend with a link to an article that he thought I may be interested in.  The article was about Purplepatch athlete Sam Iinkinen….a lot of you may already know his story…but I didn’t….when I read this article I had an “AHA” moment.  It was as if I was reading about myself  (with the exception of the sub 9 hour Ironman Hawaii time J ) …here was a guy who worked similar hours and trained similar hours to me and has been able to race competitively.

What also struck me was how similar our training schedules are:

Sam’s training schedule:

       Monday:  Rest (or 30 min easy swim)
       Tuesday:   Bike intervals on trainer (60-90 minutes)
       Wednesday:  Run intervals on trails (60-70 mins)
       Thurs ( Bike intervals on trainer (60-90 mins)
       Friday: Rest/Swim (40-60 mins)/easy run
      Saturday:  Bike long
      Sunday  Run long

This article really helped to shift my attitude and I realized that maybe my biggest limiter has been my inconsistency in training and not my lack of training hours. My issue has also been the months and months I have taken off, instead of just plugging away day in and day out. I let my frustration of not being able to “do more” get the best of me.   So I have made a pact with myself to just “keep on keepin on” and just focus on maintaining consistency post Ironman Whistler.  Thank you to Earl for sharing this article. And thanks to Sam, I don’t know you, but you are my inspiration!

On race day  I will race my race.  If its not enough to get me on the podium or Kona…I am ok with that.  I know I did all I could do for this race given my limited training time/work schedule.    Ok maybe I skipped a few swims, but besides that…

I was prepared to go out there and give 100%, but at the end of the day this race was for me and was not about winning my AG or qualifying for Kona. It was about regaining belief in myself and reigniting my passion for this sport.  So while I am extremely competitive and always have a desire to win, my main goal was to execute a great race and stomp out all the demons of last year in my head!

Thankful and appreciating the opportunity to race in this amazing place

I am filled with gratitude to be able to travel to amazing places to race.  And to arrive in Whistler healthy and ready to race is not something I take for granted.  Whistler is an amazing venue for Ironman and I fell in love with it immediately! Highly recommend!

There is no better compliment than hearing you inspire other people.
I have been so honored recently to have quite a few people reach out to me just to tell me that I inspire them.  I realized that being able to inspire just a few people to work hard, chase dreams, dig deep, and never give up….means more to me than winning any race.  So thank you to all who reached out, you picked me up when I needed it and I raced with all of you in my mind on race day.

Loving it again
And lastly….although this doesn’t need much explanation…I am so happy to have reignited my passion for triathlon. I have been a competitive athlete my whole life, and I’m so happy I didn’t throw in the towel at 35 J  Thank you to everyone who helped me this year find my love of this sport again. 

I’ll be back soon with an update on race day.

Thanks for reading!


Thursday, July 18, 2013

Focusing on the Journey

Wow, where has the time gone.  Has it really been 4 months since I last blogged?!  I know, I know I sound like a broken record, but this year is going way too fast!  Now that I have entered what I call my 8 week Ironman crackdown mode (I’ll explain more later), I figured it was a good time for an update.  I have been living true to my motto "Work Hard, Play Hard, Race Hard" and there is sooo much to update on!!

Quickly, before I get into too much Tri talk…it’s not all about Tris is it?!  A quick recap since I was last on here.  April was a fun month (except for turning 35).  I have to admit, I really struggled with this birthday.  Some people struggle with 30, some with 40 and I assume maybe 50, 60 etc?  But 35 was really tough for me and had me thinking a lot.  I started to think about where I was in life and how it is so not where I thought I would be at this age.  Actually, I can’t even say I had this big picture layout of where I expected to be at this age, guess I should have set more 5 and 10 years goals back at 25 and 30.  Oops.  But live and learn, so yes, the goal setting has begun for the next 5, 10 years.  My lululemon friends will be so proud :)   The build up to 35 was way worse than the actual day…not surprising right?!    That is when I realized I should be focusing on all I have to be thankful for at 35 and not focusing on what I didn’t have or had not accomplished yet.  First and foremost I was thankful for my friends and family who made the whole birthday week so special and fun -- I forgot all about the age! And what’s a Birthday without a Birthday present to yourself, right?? This year I purchased a new Scooter - ROMEO!

                                           ROMEO!!! Isn't he HOT??!!

                                          Celebrating "35" NYC style with Great friends!

                                             My adorable Godson Eamon blowing out my candles :)

The bday celebration continued in Cabo a few weeks later with my friend Danielle and Sissy.  We had a great week in the sun and lots of fun :)  Sissy now works at lululemon full time (I am sooo jealous!)  and its more difficult for her to take time off now, so I was SO glad she could make the trip for a few days.  Celebrating my bday without Sissy just wouldn’t be the same. 

                                           Cocktails in Cabo at the One and Only Palmilla

May finally brought race time for me.   I toed the line at Florida 70.3 thinking wow – 6 months since I last raced? And those were 6 months of mostly NO training!  It certainly had my nerves going even more than usual race morning.  Florida 70.3 was my first ever 70.3 back in 2006 and when I qualified for my first World Championship event and have raced here almost every year since! After not having raced here last year, I was really excited to go back! I love this race!  Let me take a step you know from previous blogs, I took a very loooong off season!  And let me tell you, boy was I out of shape when I got back! But the good thing was I missed it - I missed the training and the racing and that is the point I needed to get to in order put in the work again!  So at first when I suggested Florida to my coach he wasn't thrilled with the idea because at that point I would only have had about 4 weeks of training under my belt and he didn't want me to be disappointed with my result.  But I was able to convince him that I needed to get back out there and test my fitness.  My goal for this season has really been to focus on the process and not get too caught up in individual results. The one thing I know I have lacked in my training is consistency and I'm really trying to work on that. Nothing has changed in my job and I’m still working crazy hours, trying to squeeze training in when I can, and not getting nearly enough sleep, but you know the saying "If you don't like something change it, and if you can't change it, change your attitude!"  Well that is essentially what my mantra for the year has been and on most days I think I have been successful :)

Ok back to the race..I flew down to Florida with my Mom  (I am always so THANKFUL to have her join me on these trips, I truly couldn't do it without her).  Although I have raced Florida many times, this was my first time at the new venue.  Pre race all went very smoothly and I"m also extremely thankful to have Tribike Transport as a sponsor as they take off all the stress of having to deal with getting my bike to and from races!  As for the race itself, I had a good day! I didn't set any personal records, I didn't win the race, but I did land on the podium with a 3rd place finish and most importantly I REALLY enjoyed competing again! I had fun out there and I did the best I could on the day. I think my result was a fair assessment of where my fitness was at. My overall time was 4:58.  I swam 36 minutes.  I was happy with this since I swam a total of 5 times since IMAZ and it was a non wetsuit swim! One of these years I will find the time to focus on my swim, I know I have a lot of room for improvement here. But with limited training time, I need to focus on the bike/run where I know I can make up the most time!  I biked a 2:42.   Hmm the bike...for the past year I feel as I have been making big improvements in training but it hasn't seemed to translate into a good bike split! But I'm hopeful one day soon that fast bike split will make an appearance!! And I ran a 1:33.  Not my best run, but again with so much time off I'm happy with my effort and on a day where it was super hot and a lot of people were walking this was still one of the fastest splits of the day, so I'll take it :)   Overall it was a good day, and I left Florida happy and content with  my performance!

Yup Looks like I"m happy to be racing again :) Not sure what I"m doing here?? Carrying a torch to the finish??
                                    Post race with my Biggest Fan & Supporter - Mom!

June was a hectic month with a little bit of everything.  Started off the month doing the Rev 3 Quassy Olympic.  I had not raced an Olympic distance since 2009, so I was a little nervous. You might ask, nervous about an Olympic when you race Ironmans?!  The Olympic distance is hard – all out for 2+ hours!  The shorter the race the harder the effort gets right?   Well that’s what I told myself :) Since I am not a great swimmer, olympic distance events aren't the best distance for me, but I had a free entry for a Rev 3 event from winning my AG at Rev 3 Maine last year and for a few reasons I decided to sign up for this race!  Also, a few friends were racing the half the next day, so I stayed for the weekend to get in some additional training and cheer them on!

As I predicted, racing Olympics is hard!! And this is a hard, hilly course!! I pulled off another 3rd place finish and the fastest run split! Again, I really enjoyed racing and was happy with my overall performance ! I loved racing again and know I gave it all I had!  Rev 3 puts on a really nice race and I had such a fun weekend racing with friends.

The next weekend I was off to Turks and Caicos for 5 days with my extended family.  This trip involved very little training, a lot of beach/pool time, laughs, drinks and fun.  I wasn’t feeling like much of a triathlete after this trip (PLAY HARD too right?!).  Thankfully I followed this trip with a weekend in Lake Placid with WorkLiveTri team for a training camp.  The 2 days of biking and swimming was much need after my fun in the sun in T&C.

                                    Ahhh pure heaven...the beach is my happy place 

After over a year since my last trip to visit sissy in SD (don’t worry we saw each other plenty throughout the year) my mom and I headed to SD for a long weekend with JK.  Our already planned trip was such perfect timing as… Sissy and Mike got engaged the wknd prior!!  YAY – congrats.  I could not be happier for them.  It was a girls weekend so we did a little bit of everything.  Mom, Sis and I did some runs along the beach, swim, beach time, shopping, good food etc.  We even squeezed in a race – the JUMP aquathon.  Fun race, but running right after the swim with no bike in between is tougher than I thought!  Was also so happy to catch up with my old friend (and MUCH missed training partner) Liz and meet her adorable daughter Hailey.   It was really such a great weekend and we were all sad to see it end. 

                           Celebrating Sissy's engagement SD style!!
                                    So happy to be reunited with Liz & meet cute Hailey!
                                                    My two Faves!
                                               I think I'm winning the bike race :)

Back in NY recovering from the red eye also had me gearing up for my 8 week Ironman crackdown… oh yeah, forgot to mention I am doing Ironman Canada in Whistler in August.  I learned after Ironman Cozumel 2011 that I can only focus on Ironman training/intensity for 8 weeks.  If I try to do longer I lose focus and get too tired. And for those wondering what exactly "Ironman crackdown mode means to me...for me during these 8 weeks besides work I really try to make training a priority and I do my best to block out other distractions. It's only during these 8 weeks that I will not miss training sessions for a few glasses of wine with friends or skip a ride for a day at the beach. During all other times of the year I really try to balance social activities with training. For me, there is so much more to my life than triathlon training and I can't sacrifice everything else all year long!   It is only during these 8 weeks that life is all work, swim bike and run!   I like to think this would be different if my job wasn’t so demanding on my time, but since this is what I have to work with right now, I’m working with it.  Back in the winter as I tried to figure out how to approach this year and what worked and had not worked in the past is when I realized I felt most prepared for IMCOZ 2011 after only 8 weeks of focused training.  So here I am now…in the beginning stretch of it and really enjoying it.  Very late start to the season for me, but I am enjoying the journey again and that is what it’s all about!

I knew after last year that I had to make some changes.  As I have mentioned, I spent a lot of time this past winter thinking about where I went wrong, how I ended up in such a rut at the end of 2012 and how can I improve on those issues.  There were three glaring things that kept resurfacing every time I reflected back – 1. Find a way to have more consistency in my training 2.  Don’t put so much pressure on myself 3. Focus on myself and not what other people are doing.  Number 1 speaks for itself, so I’ll skip to number 2… I tend to put a lot of pressure on myself in all that I do, but I realized that as excited and proud I was after winning the amateur title at IMCOZ it also brought even more self imposed pressure.  I got so much in my own head last year that I took the fun out of it.  As for number 3… social media is great in so many ways.  And not so great sometimes too.  For me, the more I knew about how much other people trained, how they were out getting in extra 100 mile rides mid week, how they were just finishing their ‘morning’ workout at 9am while I had already been at work for 2 hours and barely could squeeze in an hour training session, or how most people seem to be going to bed for the night just as I'm leaving the office..all of these factors just added to the pressure I put on myself.  And I will admit, this led to some insecurities on race day.  No matter how much I tried to tell myself I have to trust what I did in my training, it wasn’t enough because I was always thinking about how others had trained so much more.  

So while being aware of this is a step in the right direction, I also needed to make some changes, one of which was a coach change.  I decided I wanted to have a coach based in NYC.  For some reason having a local coach just made me feel like I was going back to my early days of Triathlon when it was just for fun!  Deciding to change coaches is one of those things that is NEVER easy.  I am now working with Brian Hammond of WorkLiveTri based here in NYC.  It has been really great working with him so far and I am excited and optimistic for the future together.  Sadly, I had to say goodbye to Mike Plumb (sort of!).  Mike and I had a great run together.  He taught me so much, he was amazingly supportive of me and I am so thankful for all the time and advice he gave me to me as a coach and a friend.  Luckily he can’t get rid of me completely…he is soon going to be my brother in law :)

Lastly, I am thrilled to be on the NUUN and Sparkly Soul ambassador teams this year and have the support of Newton.
And huge thank you for the continued support of Tribike Transport, HealthWarrior, lululemon and Sai Systems.

Hope everyone is having a fabulous summer.