May 27, 2013

Vacation and Training

I'm off to enjoy our annual vacation on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.  It's giving me a time to level set and regroup for the season to come.  I'm enjoying running on the beach at sunrise and swimming laps in the pool.  I should be in pretty good shape for the upcoming Pflugerville Triathlon, provided I don't over do it on the rich seafood and beer.

May 23, 2013

Ironman Texas, My Next Goal

I had set a goal for myself that I would do an Ironman before I'm 40.  I figured that Ironman Texas would be the most obvious choice.  Knowing that these events tend to sell out quickly, I wanted to get in on the registration as quickly as I could.  So I did.  I am now registered for Ironman Texas 2014.  I've got a year to get ready.  I feel like there is so much further that I have to go before I'm anywhere near being remotely ready for that.  But it's happening. I've registered, called my shot, and laid down the gauntlet. Bring it!

May 21, 2013

Splash 'n Dash

As a final training session of my triathlon group, we participated in the Splash 'n Dash.  It's a 750 meter open water swim, followed by a 3 mile run.  It's a USAT sanctioned, timed event.  My swim was not good.  I'm just uncomfortable in open water.  Not nervous or scared, just uncomfortable.  I'm not sure what it is.  I think I get intimidated by the distance and focus on how long it is rather than what's right in front of me. I'm not sure but it's definitely something I need to work on.  I survived. It was tough but fun and I was glad that I was able to do it with a lot of new friends.

May 18, 2013

Real Ale Ride

Keeping the training going by participating in the Real Ale Ride.  Sponsored by a local bicycle shop and micro-brewery Real Ale, the ride takes place in Blanco, TX and is a very hilly ride.  "Up the hills and down the beers" is their slogan.  It was a fun 50 mile ride that I got to do with a coworker.  It was a lot of climbing and the heat was a little brutal, but it was a great ride followed by some great beer.

May 15, 2013

Training Group Ending

The triathlon training group I've been with for the past 8 weeks is coming to an end. They'll all be racing the Capital of Texas Triathlon while I'll be in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina on vacation.  It's been a great experience.  I've learned so much and made a lot of new friends and training partners.  I feel like I'm now starting to become part of the triathlon community.  Slowly and in a very small way, but it's happening.  I'm very thankful for the experience and think that I'll be much better prepared for my future races.

May 5, 2013

Midnight Moontower Run

Rogue Running was hosting a free, supported half-marathon (with other distances) starting a midnight. The course went through east Austin, campus and south Austin stopping at the majority of the moontowers (cue Dazed and Confused reference).  At the end, there was to be beer and breakfast tacos.

I think this was some of the most fun I'd had on a long run.  We started out going through the hip east Austin bar district where everyone, both on traffic and foot, were in shock/awe/surprised curiosity of the mass of runners decked in glow strips running through the streets.  Then through the neighborhoods where some parties were happening and we got some curious and enthusiastic reactions.  As we made our way over to the UT campus, the city was going to sleep. Everything was shutting down. We went up to the UT tower around 1:00 where we discovered a game of cricket being played on the plaza.  We watched that briefly before setting out again.

As we went through the heart of campus, we passed numerous parties where we got a lot of cheers.  Coming back into downtown, we lost some members of our group as they turned off for the shorter routes.  Just before 2:00, when most of the bars close, we were on west 6th street dodging mass groups of drunks on the streets and sidewalks. As we crossed the river, it was as if we were in a different city altogether.  A city that had gone to bed a long time ago.  It was so quiet.  It was like that through the rest of neighborhoods.  We saw animal control slowly chasing a dog up and down a street. Other than that, it was pretty deserted.

When I finally finished, I had run a half marathon.  It was around 2:45.  I was looking forward to a beer and breakfast tacos.  Unfortunately the beer was gone and the tacos, almost gone and cold.  Oh well.  It was still one of the most fun runs I've had.