Thursday, August 31, 2006

LVM Training Week #2

I'm 4 days into week #2 now. Here's what's been going on. I took a rest day Monday. It was much needed after the back-to-back 5k and 13 miler. I picked back up Tuesday with Intervals. FIRST said I was to do:

1 mile warmup
4 x 800m w/2 min rest
10 min cooldown

I went over to the track around 5:30 and found that I had to break and enter again. And they are making it harder on me. The place I slipped through the last time was blocked with orange fence. AND - instead of 1 soccer goal, there were 2 - one on the each straight-a-way blocking the entire width of the track. Michele wasn't along this time, so I didn't even bother moving them. I just ran around them in the grass instead. Garmin and I regained our trust during this outing, by the way. I learned how to create a workout in the software and download it to the device, so I ended each interval "when I pushed the lap button" instead of when it thought I went a certain distance. It worked great! Here are the results:

1.01 mile warmup: 10:44 (I was half asleep)
4 x 800 w/2 min rest:
1 mile cooldown: 9:32

My target time for each 800 was 3:31. As you can see, I didn't hit it, but I came pretty close. And hey - they are negative splits!! AND, they are better than my previous 800s too. I was happy with this workout. I also did some strength training and went to Yoga class that evening. The Yoga felt SO good. I used my new $7 yoga mat that I puchased at Marshall's and really liked it. The lunges and leg weights I did made my legs sore, as usual...but that stuff just has to be done.

Wednesday was a cross training day. I started the morning at 5:15 when Briar and I went to the rec center. We jogged 2 miles and then swam laps in the pool. The jogging really isn't cross training, but it's the best time to get a run in with Briar. I focused hard on my recovery stroke like Coach Dan told me, but only got in about 500 or 600 yards before we had to get home and get on with the day. I rode 20.11 miles on my bike at lunch in 1:04:58. It was a tough quads burned so badly for the first 4 or 5 miles. But I put out a good effort inspite of being a little fatigued. No pain, no gain. What don't kill ya makes you stronger. Right? Right. I'll rest on a rest day sometime soon.

Thursday (today) called for a 7 mile tempo run. 1 mile easy, 2 miles at PMP(9:00), and 1 mile easy. I got up at 5:15 and got ready to go. I tried to wear my heart rate monitor, but couldn't get it to pick up a signal before starting, so I left it at home. The sky was starting to light up as I took off...nice. And it felt wonderfully cool. I need to go back and check what the temp was....because it was just about perfect. Here are the mile splits:

1.Easy - 10:19
2.PMP - 8:52
3.PMP - 8:50
4.PMP - 8:54
5.PMP - 8:49
6.PMP - 8:58 (a lot of uphill)
7.Easy - 9:35

Total Time: 7 miles in 1:04:21
Avg Pace: 9:12

I was very happy with this run. And so far, I am in love with the FIRST program. It is requiring me to run these training runs faster, which is exactly what I need to do. But without a guide or plan, it is my nature to just stroll along. And I am loving the cross training time I get. This afternoon I am planning on doing an open water swim, and then tomorrow will be an easy cross training day...or maybe a rest day...since I am swimming on a running day and have a long run to do Saturday.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Vegas Marathon Training: Wrapping up Week 1

Both Thursday and Friday were cross training days for me, due to the 5k on Saturday and the fact that I chose to do my long run this time with the Mach Tenn Running Club on Sunday. That's not exactly how FIRST says to do it, but I am not that anal. I was looking forward to meeting some of the people in the running club, and they were having a 13 mile group run - exactly the distance FIRST said I was doing - so I thought it was a good idea.

I ended up riding my bike almost 14 miles with a coworker during my lunch break on Thursday. Nothing too exciting, just a nice little loop to keep me in the saddle.

On Friday, I finally made it back to the pool. Instead of going early in the morning, I waited until around 11:00 and brought Bo along. Much to my surprise, as I picked out a lane at the pool, I noticed that Coach Dan, who used to coach the swim team Briar was on, was swimming next to me. YES!!! "What perfect timing!!!" I thought to myself. I have emailed him some lately asking for tips, and he has been very gracious to try and help me. I didn't think he recognized me, and I didn't want to interrupt his workout, so I just started my workout hoping that he might recognize my stroke from the McMinnville City Tri video. After a good while we spoke, and I re-introduced myself. He took one look at my stroke and gave me 2 things to correct. I am stoked about the possibility of correcting these things and hopefully getting faster!! I am hitting the pool tomorrow morning with the sole purpose of working on these.

Saturday, ofcourse, was the 5k, and Sunday was my first long run for Vegas Marathon Training. I met some of the club members at Motlow College at 6:30 a.m. We introduced ourselves, chatted a minute, and then took off on the 13 mile loop. My pace was supposed to be "Planned Marathon Pace (9:00) + 30 seconds". Well, most of them were running faster than that, so I kept up. The first 3 miles averaged around 9:00, but then everybody stood around a couple minutes at the water/gu stop, so that set the pace back some. I was not used to doing that - I normally don't stop during a long run, mostly out of fear that I won't start back. But as it turned out, we did that every 3 miles. The run was beautiful - lots of scenic country sides and places I wished I could build a house on. One guy with us was great at keeping the dogs away, and the other female with us really pushed my pace. Around mile 9 we encountered probably the most monsterous hill I've ever tried to attempt on foot. I ran it as long as I could, then had to revert to walking the rest of the way. Most all of my miles(except for every 3rd) were between 8:20 and 9:30, but my final time for the 13 miles was 2:08 - a 9:50/mile pace. Not exactly a 9:30 pace, but it was a fun and beneficial experience, and I was sweating buckets by the time I was done. My shoes were even "squishing" like I had been running in the rain. I had to take off as soon as I was done in order to make it back in time for church.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Old Timer's Day 5k 2006

I have warm feelings toward this event, as it was my very first 5k ever and where I caught the running bug in 2004. It was 2 years ago when Holly (my sister) and I got "talked into" running this thing by Tracy and Michele. We had been running between 2 and 4 slow miles at a time, just getting into shape, and we didn't have high expectations. But on that cloudy, dreary morning along the side of a few friends, hearing the cheers of our mom and dad, and in the spirit of competition, we pushed ourselves harder than we ever had. I finished in 25:29 and Holly was a couple seconds behind. We were completely surprised when we took 1st and 2nd place in the 20 - 29 yr age group.

Holly and I after the 2004 Old Timers Day 5k

When the alarm went off at 5:30, I didn't feel great. I used the snooze button a couple times, and Briar and I finally made our way up and out to the rec center around 6:40. The race started at 7:00 a.m., so we didn't have a lot of time to mess around. The 130+ participants lined up, and the race director yelled "Go!". There were a lot of kids and adults who had lined up at the front of the start line, so there was a lot of congestion for the first several hundred yards. But by the time we got out onto the highway, it wasn't too bad. Just short of the first mile marker I was breifly chatting with a friend who was running the same pace, and I hear "Go Momma! I love you!" It was Bo! He and J.T. were driving up and down the highway stretch of the course cheering us on. When my Garmin beeped for 1 mile, I noticed that my time was 7:37.

"Hmmm...not bad for the first mile...."

But I had an awfully high heart rate and perceived level of effort for that kind of split. I was really looking to be down around 7:30. We took a left and ran into the state park, and I lost the friend with whom I had been chatting. She picked it up a little, and I slowed down a little, and so I was never able to catch her again. I made the turn at the out and back and met and cheered for lots of people that I knew out there running. Briar was one of them, and he was looking great. Holly was out there too, but was taking it easy due to a horrible case of plantar faciatis. My second mile was 7:48, and by then getting under 23 min wasn't looking good.

I had been running along with another girl most of the way back, but I had dropped back a little before entering onto the greenway that goes back to the rec center. I felt like now was the time to catch her, so I picked up the pace, got even with her and stayed that way down along with greenway. I could see the finish line and continued to pick up the pace, pulling ahead of her slightly. I made the left turn towards the finish line and began to hear footsteps coming up behind me, so I gave it everything I had to the end, pulling away from the footsteps and finishing strong, but in a time of only 23:47. It was good enough for 2nd place in my age group (22-32 yr...not sure how they came up with that, but oh well).

Holly came in strong soon after, and then Briar came in with a time of 27:47, and 5th in the 12 and under age group (he's 9). I was SO proud of him!

Me, Briar and Holly after the race

Bo also ran the "mini mile". A one mile and out and back on the greenway. He finished strong, despite being a little ticked off that he "didn't win". (don't ask me where he gets that attitude)

Bo finishing the Mini Mile

There was lots of support out there, and it was a really fun race. A lot friends and acquaintances were running, and my mom, dad, and J.T. and lots of friends were all there cheering. We finished up the day by watching the parade, letting the kids play at the park, and then listening to the band and the watching the fireworks that night.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Not Really Reaching The Goal

Week 1 Day 3 (Tuesday) was a cross training day. Nothing really went in my favor as far as getting this cross training done. 1st, at 4:45 a.m. when my alarm went off, J.T. looked over and asked "Can go on to work right now, I really need to." Since this could be a matter of how much money he may or may not make that day, I oblidged. And then I had to break my lunch date with my bike due to a "department luncheon" (lovely). So I hit the pool after work and decided a swim session would have to do. I swam 500 yds warmup, 1000 yards tempo in 20:44 (how slow can I get?!), and 500 yds cool down while really focusing on my stroke technique.

Today was Day 4, and my first tempo run. "FIRST" said I was supposed to run 2 miles easy, then 2 miles at short tempo pace, then 2 miles easy for a total of 6 miles. I looked up my short tempo pace and found that it was 7:51 (YIKES!). I played with the snooze button for a while this morning before actually getting up, but I finally got up and ready around 5:45 a.m. It was not hot!!! I opened my garage door and heard the Hallelujah Chorus ring in my ears as I felt the temperature and experienced the beautiful sky lit up with the sunrise. I even wondered for a split second if I would need sleeves (amusing, I know), and wanted to take a picture of the sky but realized that my camera was broken.

So I set out on the tempo run. The garmin beeped in the exact location of mile marker 1, and said 10:00. That's pretty typical for my first mile pretty early in the morning. Mile 2 finished at the base of jail hill, and was 9:50. That meant the beginning of my fast miles was going to be going up jail hill. UGH!! So I picked up the pace, but never really picked it up as much as I wanted to - the 3rd mile was 8:21, and the 4th mile was 8:17. A far cry from 7:51! But oh well...I finished the run back to my house with mile 5 in 10:10 and mile 6 in 9:36 for a total time of 56:15, 9:22/mile. Papa Louie said that sometimes he hits the target and sometimes he doesn' I'll just try to get closer the next time. Either way, I can so see how this program could make you faster. Since I am a slow runner craving some speed, that is exciting to me.

The good news is that Garmin was right on with the distance today. I think it must be something about running around in circles on the track that caused the discrepancy Monday. I noticed on the map it plotted that several of the points around the curves were off. It is soooo nice to have a Garmin again!!!! How did I go this long without it?

Monday, August 21, 2006

Week 1 - Days 1 and 2: A New Plan

Finally, I have a plan.

Yesterday (Sunday, Aug20), marked the beginning of my 16 week training program for the Las Vegas Marathon. I am going to use the FIRST TO FINISH program from the Furman Insitute of Running. I chose this program because it involves 3 - 4 runs a week with cross training in between and 1 - 2 days of rest. I love the idea of cross training because I want keep working on my cycling and swimming for triathlon season, but I also want to be able to follow a training plan for the marathon. The Vegas Marathon is December 10th, so my plan is to train for it the next 16 weeks, using the bike and swim as my cross training activities. I'll take some rest time during Christmas, since it will come right after the marathon, and then after the new year I'll try to get into some more specific triathlon training. I still have one more tri this year - The Music City Triathlon
. It's an Olympic Distance, so I am excited about doing my 2nd ever Oly. I think it will fall around week 4 of my marathon training, so I will substitute my long run that week with the tri. I also have the Old Timers Day 5k this Saturday - I am just going to do it instead of a cross training day, and run my first long run of 13 miles the next day. Hopefully soon I'll have a more detailed schedule of what I'll be doing, and I'll post a link to it.

As for what I've been doing lately, I ran 10 miles Friday to make sure I could still do some distance. It went fairly well, and I ended up with an average pace of 9:31. Briar and I jogged the Old Timer's Day 5k course at high noon Saturday (I know, I should be ashamed to do that to him). Sunday was the first day of my Marathon Training and was supposed to be cross training. I did the loop around Normandy on my bike - 19.34 miles in 1:03:18. It was like 6:30 p.m., I was well rested and it felt great outside. It's those kinds of rides that remind me why I do this stuff.

This morning I did my first interval session at the track. The plan was as follows:

Warmup: 10:00 - 20:00 min warmup
3 x 1600m with 1:00 min rest between each
Target Interval Pace = 7:16/mile (5k race pace/mile minus 15 seconds)
Cooldown: 10:00 min

Here are the actual numbers, according to my new Garmin:

2.05 mile warmup: 20:41

3 x 1600 w/1:00 m rest:
1. 7:12
2. 7:19
3. 7:13

1.02 mile cooldown: 9:33

Obviously, I am pretty happy with those numbers...except for one thing...I had set up the workout in my Garmin beforehand, so it automatically took the lap times at 1 mile and started the 1:00 min rest...then started timing the second interval after the rest period, and so on...but when I got close to the end of the 4th lap on the track, the Garmin beeped for me to stop and showed "1 mile" about 30 yards short of where I started. I went ahead and stopped, since I didn't want to negotiate the whopping 1:00 minute of rest time I had, but I have to say I am a little disappointed that Garmin would be that far off on such a short distance. Granted, there are bleachers sitting on one side of the track that I have to go around, but I don't think it would make a 30 yard difference. Michele was running her intervals as well, and her Garmin actually made her run a little FARTHER than the starting point. The second interval seemed to hit pretty well dead on with the distance, and the time also reflects that. The third one had me stop short again. I may try the "workouts" feature again next week, and hope that it is more accurate than this time. If not, I will just use the lap button manually from now on with my intervals. It would be differen if I was out doing them on the road where I didn't have the distance marked off...but it feels a little funny to be running 1600 m intervals on a track and stop 30 yards shy of where you started.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Ramble On

Ain't nothing I can do, no...

Ramble On!!

Like Led Zeppelin? I've been singing that song all day. I never listened to much Led Zeppelin until I started hanging out with J.T. - many years ago - like 12. Anyways, I'm just in the mood to ramble today. Not in the way they are singing about in this song, but as in I've got lots of stuff on mind, and I think I'll just "ramble" about all of it.

First off, I ran 6 miles Saturday in 55:05 but didn't feel very good while running. Sunday Briar and I ran 2 miles, and he didn't feel very good either. I have seen him run 2 miles like it was it a breeze many times, but he had to stop several times during this one. Today I was supposed to get up early and do something, possibly speedwork at the track, maybe the Old Timer's Day 5k course, maybe just a 5 mile run...but since I didn't have a definite plan, I opted to exercise the snooze button instead of my lungs and legs. Lovely. So I ended up grouchy all morning because of my lack of self discipline. I couldn't take it any more by lunch time, so I changed and decided to run 5 miles in 93 degrees and 60% humidity. I was thinking that was cooler than it has been lately, but it kicked my slow, white booty all over the place. I was gonna go out and do the first mile slow, pick it up for the next 3, then cruise in for the 5th as a cool down. Good grief... my first my was 9:31 ("not bad", I thought). The second mile was 9:18 ("I guess that'll do, since it's pretty warm out here", I said). The third mile was 9:35 ("What the???"), and the 4th and final 'fast' mile was 9:02 ("There...that's...better" as try catching a breath and barely get one). And I freakin' stop and walk. Oh. My. Goodness. "What are you doing, Lana????" So I walk for like 3 minutes and then finish jogging the last mile back to the office. It was not a good experience. The 5 miles took me a total of 49:09, and that's all I've got to say about that. Perhaps with a little luck I can erase it from my memory.

Wanna hear the good news? I ordered a new Garmin 305 yesterday! I felt as though I had punished myself long enough for leaving my 301 on the Pathfinder bumper. So I broke down and placed the order. And some more good news? J.T. and I may be going to Vegas the weekend of Dec 10th. Do you know what happens on Dec 10th? The Las Vegas Marathon, ofcourse! J.T. has a business related seminar to attend that weekend, and we both have some celebrating to do for our 10th wedding anniversary that was in May of this year. We wanted to go to Vegas then, but felt it was not in our best financial interest since we had just been snow skiing and was also planning for a beach trip this summer. So we agreed to do the "mature thing" (saying that made it easier, by the way) and deny ourselves of this indulgence. But now that there is business to be done in Vegas, it's a different story. I am not ready to commit to doing this yet, but I'll just say I am thinking seriously about it right now.

Have you guys of the North Face Endurance 50 yet? Ultramarathoner Dean Karnazes is going to run 50 marathons, in 50 states, in 50 days!! Can you imagine? I am completely intrigued by this. And you can actually sign up for $100 and run with him at any of the events. He has a post on his blog titled "Building Endurance" where I'd like to quote some of the things he says:

"One thing is for certain, I've been completely amazed by the resilience of the human body."

"You’re better than you think you are and you can do more than you think you can. Whether you're running one mile or one hundred, I encourage you to test your own personal boundaries and expand upon your own personal limits of endurance."

It is nice to think that I may be better than I think I am, and can do more than I think I am capable of. I'll carry that around in my pocket for awhile.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

I need to swim...

I've been having some fairly good workouts this week, but I can't seem to get to the pool, and it's bugging me. Monday I did speedwork, as I mentioned in the previous post. Tuesdsay I rode my bike with 4 guys at work during my lunch break. We did route they call "3 steps" because you take a road that takes up a series of 3 hills before you get to the top. I was a little concerned since they were all on road bikes, and I was on my Quintana Roo Kilo tri bike, but I turned out to be okay. I am thinking about doing some longer group rides in the next few months. Sept 9th is the Elk River Century that is done by our local cycling club, and then that night is the I Run For The Party 5k. I'd like to do atleast the 68 mile option on that ride, and then go do the 5k run in Nashville. The run starts at 5 p.m. Anyways, about the longer group rides. These rides go up lots of big hills, and some of them even climb up in mountains. I have only a double chainring in the front, and my rear cassette is an 11-23. Some people have told me I could switch that cassette out for a 12-25 or a 12-27 and it would help. I was thinking about just buying a road bike. Or pulling a TriSaraTops and slipping a picture of a Trek 1000 inside J.T.'s ESPN Magazine next month, since I'll turn the big "three-0" in October. Does anyone have an opinion? Should I consider buying a road bike? Switching the rear cassette? Just try to gut it out with what I have?

Anyways, I had a good early morning workout with Michele Wednesday. We rode a new route of 19 miles, saw a totally awesome moon(it was big and looked like the sun!), and then watched the sun come up. Then we had time for a quick 2 mile run around town before heading home to get the kids up and off to school. My plan for today was to get up and lift weights at 5:15, then swim a mile or so, but I listen to the demons this morning and didn't get out of bed (hanging my head). I tried to make it up for it at lunch by cycling hard with a coworker, but I desperately needed a strength workout and a swim this morning. Maybe tomorrow? I don't know. Tomorrow was supposed to be a long run. Perhaps I could push the long run up to Saturday.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Climbing The Fence

I climbed the fence this morning.

I got up at 4:50 a.m. and headed out to the Middle School track because I knew they still had construction going on at Westwood's track. And besides that, the Middle School has GREAT stairs to run, and I have been wanting to start doing that. I haven't run those stairs since I played High School basketball (13 years ago), and I think I could handle them much better now. I am not the same person I was then. So, all that aside, I got out and walked up to the fence to find that it was locked - each and every gate. What's up with that? Why would they lock that track? Is the public not allowed to use it? Do our tax dollars not go for things like that? I am going to find out soon. So I looked around, looked up to the top of the fence as I considered climbing, and saw barbed wire at the top.

"Nope...I won't be climbing this fence. Westwood's looking a lot better right now."

So I get back in the car, upset that I have wasted 10 minutes of my precious morning workout time, and head to Westwood, where everything is locked as well - but no barbed wire. I threw my Gatorade and phone over the fence, held on to my key chain with my teeth, and started climbing. As I was on my way down on the other side, I made a mental note to save some energy to get back over when I was done.

"It would really suck to get stuck inside....don't kill yourself on that last 800 this time."

So I did a half mile warmup, 6 x 800s with a 400 recovery in between, and then a half mile cool down at the end. AND, this time I jogged all the recoveries except 1(I walked the 3rd), which is something I've been trying to start doing. Times were as follows(Interval Time - Recovery Time):

800 warmup: 5:13

1. 3:40 - 2:47
2. 3:38 - 2:51
3. 3:38 - 5:22
4. 3:37 - 3:04
5. 3:39 - 3:02
6. 3:41

800 cooldown: 5:09

Not great, but not bad by my standards either. As I was coming around the 4th turn on my 3rd interval the sky had lit up enough that I noticed there was about a foot of space between the fence and the new building they are working on at the track. I was relieved that I wouldn't have to climb the fence again - I just slipped right through and took off after I finished!!

I had a fairly good week of workouts last week - a couple days of swimming, a nice long brick with Michele, and a "sorta long" run of 8.25 miles Saturday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. in some HEAT. I am still trying to decide what events I will do next.

Briar competed in the Kids of Steel Youth Triathlon Saturday morning. He did really well, ended up 5th in a tough age group, and we had a good time. I'll have a race report for that one coming soon.

Also, a big Congrats to Michele, who placed 2nd in her AG in her first duathlon, and congrats to Elizabeth who finished her first Half IronMan!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Briar's Youth Triathlon: "Tri 4 Gold"

Finally, I am putting together a race report for Briar's 2nd Youth Triathlon ever. He did one last year, and this was his first this year. He has been swimming 200 yard and 100 yard repeats at the pool about 3 times a week, running 1 - 2 miles 3 times a week, and playing around on his bike a lot. On Wednesdays we went to my mom and dad's subdivision and did a bike/run brick because the traffic is low there and the distance is perfect. I have tried not to be a drill sergeant, and instead let him decide when and how much he wanted to train. Do you know how that hard that is?!?! I have to admit I did make a few suggestions! But I didn't push him to do anything he didn't really want to do.

So, the triathlon consisted of a 100 yd swim/5k bike/1k run. It was called the "Tri4Gold" Youth tri and was held in the White Water water park near Atlanta. We arrived the night before - had dinner and got settled into our hotel room. He practiced putting on his helmet and shoes quickly before we went to bed. Briar woke up at 5:45 the next morning and got ready with no problem. We all loaded up and headed over to the race site around 7 a.m. He got his packet, got body marked, and then passed through the helmet and bike inspection. He was a little nervous, so J.T. threw frisby with him to help calm him down. I kept reminding him that it was "all for fun!!".

On a side note - you wouldn't believe some of the bikes those kids have!!!! Briar has Trek mountain bike, which we felt was plenty - but there were 9 year olds there with road bikes, aerobars, and racing wheels - NO LIE!!!!

The swim was held in the "lazy river" at the water park, and the transition area was in the parking lot. They had a 5 second interval start, and he was off.

He held his own during the swim and then ran to T1 which was quite a ways. He had some trouble getting his helmet on under pressure, but exited T1 with a swim/T1 time of 4:58 (11/16 in his age group).

The bike leg went around the parking lot perimeter, up a steep hill into the park, around the park and back to transition. He had a litte trouble with the hill, as he didn't change his gears soon enough, but zoomed through the rest of the course, smiled at us he went by, and got back in and out of T2 with a bike/T2 time of 11:23 (6/16 in his age group).

As he was jogging out of transition, J.T. yelled "BRIAR - This is your strong point, buddy - Go get 'em!!" And he took off like a streak of lightening!! The next time we saw him was when he came flying through the finish chute passing everyone near him. His run time was 3:21 (3/16 in his age group).(Check him out sprinting to the finish!)

Here's the bad part - 6 of the kids cut the run course way short because a volunteer had left his postion. Their run times were barely over a minute - which is obvious. The race director emailed everyone and noted that they are aware of this and apologized, but no results have been changed. The results say that Briar finished 11th out of 16 kids in his age group, but if you consider that 6 kids' times were not correct, he would have been 5th out of 16. I know that the kids did not cut the course on purpose, but I don't think it is right that some of these kids even received awards, and kept the others who were deserving, from getting one. They are evidently going to leave the results "as is". Briar wouldn't have gotten an award, as they were for 1st - 3rd place, but he knew that he done a lot better than 11th out of 16 judging from all the kids he had passed. And he was quite disappointed when he saw the results and thought he had finished 11th. So even though I was able to show him that he was really 5th - it's kinda hard to erase that disappointment he had felt. I know that it's only a kids race and is supposed to be for fun and all that - but in my opinion (which is warped by my competitive nature according to some people) - if you are giving awards and keeping up with places, it's about more than fun - even to a kid. And that should be respected by those organizing the event. Enough said.

Inspite of the little timing error - we totally enjoyed the Triathlon. The organizers made it very much like the real thing. They had a great post race party. Briar ate popsicles and a Chick-Fil-A chicken biscuit. They had someone there who had competed in one of the early Hawaii IronMan races, and told some great stories that had all the kids' attention. And afterwards, we had a day full of sliding down waterslides and bragging about who could get to the bottom the fastest. Bo finally slid down a few on his own, and we all had a great time.

Briar will also be doing the "Kids of Steel Youth Tri" this coming Saturday. This was his first tri last year - where placed 3rd in the 7&8 age group(he was 8). He has to compete as a 10 year old now, though, due to that stupid "Age Up" rule. We'll see how he does!!