An ode to Nate Dawg.

As I write this, there is currently 15 days and 22 hours and 37 minutes until I  begin my journey to complete my first Half Ironman.

To say I am excited is an understatement, to say I am nervous doesn’t do it justice!

Looking at our wave start times and bib numbers fills me with fear and butterflies! EEEK!

Nate’s number is 322 and my number is 347 for anyone keen on tracking our progress throughout the day using the Ironman Athlete Tracker http://www.ironman.com/triathlon/coverage/athlete-tracker.aspx?race=&y=-1#axzz3F1cvLnHC

Last week I was beginning to question if I was going to be ready to take on the race. I think this is a normal part of any preparation, there are going to be times when you question yourself “Have I done enough?”. It didn’t help that I was struck down by a strange illness last week and my glands ballooned! Luckily, I have made a full and speedy recovery and the time off training was probably just what my body (and mind) needed.

While resting, I got stuck into Chrissie Wellington’s book “A life without limits” which I highly recommend, for both triathletes and non-triathletes a like. She is one tough and amazing woman! I have been trying to channel some of her mental toughness in my training this week.

An interetsing and inspiring read.
An interetsing and inspiring read.

I had my first experience of the Magpie swooping season last weekend when I rode to Jamberoo and back and got swooped 4 times! It surprisingly wasn’t as bad as I had expected (due to the feeling of being somewhat protected by my helmet!), however I definitely provided passing drivers with some entertainment as I was riding and flailing my arms in an effort to shoo these Magpies off my back!

All smiles halfway through my solo Jamberoo loop!
All smiles halfway through my solo Jamberoo loop!

This was my longest solo ride to date and as much as I would have loved to share it with Nate, I came back feeling a strong sense of accomplishment having completed it on my own.

Nate didn’t accompany me on this ride because my little sister (below) was staying with us and he offered to stay and be there when Clare woke up and bring her down to the beach to meet when I was done so I could still get training in.

Clare with her first "Mocktail" (we told  her mum it was a cocktail)
Clare with her first “Mocktail” (we told her mum it was a cocktail)

Yep, he is most definitely a keeper!

Throughout this whole journey Nate has encouraged me, supported me, put up with my grumpiness and ridiculous amount of stressing over the logistics of fitting in training and I am so thankful for him.

I found this “Prayer” that I thought was amusing it sums it up nicely.

First, Endurance Gods: Thank you for the fine specimen I call my partner.

He is nice to look at.
And thank you for making him faster than me,
so that I may have a constant view of his firm rear end.

But you have led us to a 2013 schedule
with a combined total of six half-Ironmans, two Leadmans, and four Ironman races.
I beseech you for divine intervention.

Keep us safe when swimming, riding and running, Endurance Gods.
Guide us, protect us and let us not anger the motorists with their big SUVs,
so that we may return home in one piece every day.

Let him remember to wear his ID, for I am sure
he is sick of hearing me nag him about that.

May we remember to stay on top of the chores during peak training periods.
When we fail (and we will fail),
may the neighbors not call the city to complain about the overgrowth in our front yard.

Bless us with a bountiful harvest of gels and nutrition drinks.
And when he finishes the peanut butter,
grant him the wisdom to not put the empty jar back in the pantry for me to find after a 100-mile bike ride,
For I will not tolerate that. I will not.

Lead us away from hanger, but deliver us some pizza.

Should I choose to skip a 4 a.m. workout in favor of sleeping in,
break all the light switches in the house,
so that I may continue my slumber without the interruption of
his profanity-laced search for socks and iPods.

And should he decide to sleep in, too,
let me be aware of this rare event,
for I will cuddle the stuffing out of that man.

On race day,
when things start to get tough,
let him lap me when I need it most,
for a pat on the butt and a “good job, babe” is the best thing in the world.

That, and watching the view as he runs off ahead of me.
Mm-hmm, yes.

Amen to that.

You can find the original here: http://triathlon.competitor.com/2012/11/features/triathlete-love-a-prayer-for-the-two-triathlete-household_66932

 

Indeed – AMEN to that!

 

Brickie xx

Advertisements

Bircher Muesli Smoothie.

I scored a Vitamix off Nate last week as a super amazing anniversary present. So naturally, I have been shoving everything I possibly can into it!

After riding for 5 hours full of hills I got home starving ready to make a huge smoothie when Nate surprised me with the Vitamix – perfect timing.

As the training has really upped lately it’s hard to maintain motivation for every training session. Nate had a great idea to mix things up by theming weeks starting with “Everything different week” to help us keep the motivation up.

Everything different week involved eating different things throughout the day as it’s easy to get into the habit of eating the same stuff weekly For dinner it got us looking at new recipes which was awesome.

The week also involved mixing up training sessions and changing up exercises in the gym.

It was a really refreshing approach and actually quite challenging!

One of the gems that came out of the “different foods” was this Bircher Mueseli Smoothie. Now the credit for this recipe has to go to Nate – he suggested we make a bircher smoothie – best idea!

This recipe serves 2.

10653740_10152379592868691_2160130615134477514_n

The bits and pieces

1 C oats

1 green apple, chopped (skin on)

1 orange, peeled and chopped

5 dried apricots

3 tbsp almonds

4 tbsp natural yoghurt

1 tbsp honey/maple syrup or sultanas

1 tsp cinnamon

lots of ice

 

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 1-2 minutes. You may need to add a small amount of milk to get it mixing.

Serve and garnish with almonds.

Simple!

 

Enjoy xx Brickie

Mudgee Running Festival Race Recap.

A couple of weekends ago now we set off back to Mudgee and raced in the Mudgee Running Festival. Nate ran the marathon and I ran the half. Initially, I intended to run the full too but unfortunately the jump up in distances meant my tendonitis flared up and I decided to do the half instead.

On Saturday, I set out on a solo 60km ride which was awesome. Mudgee has some great rides and you pretty much have the road to yourself – this meant I got to get down on my aero bars and really go hard.

Sunday morning – Nate and I drove down to Lawson Park (with Taylor Swift pumping) and met up with Mandz and her dad, Greg. I think we were all a bit nervous!

The start was definitely different than I had expected, the announcer yelled “Ok go!” and that was it – we were off!

Off I was – I set a cracking pace of 4:25/km for the first km! I think I was a little excited! I then settled into a nice pace around 4:55/km for the next little while. Within 3km Nate had caught me (typical!) and we set off chatting until I got to the half turn around and he set off on his mammoth marathon effort!

Having so much fun with Nate - about 6km in!
Having so much fun with Nate – about 6km in!

10683468_700247603384331_3433228885136429203_o

All photos courtesy of BJ’s Mobile Photography Mudgee.

At about the 12km mark I hit the dirt road known as Tinja Lane and a section of rolling hills. I definitely underestimated this section of the course and really had to dig deep to keep the feet ticking over.

Luckily, as we hit tar again it was pretty much a downhill run and then flat into town.

After a couple of wrong turns through Lawson Park (you’d think I’d know where to go in my home town!) I finished in 1:49:13 4th in my age group and 9th girl overall. Happy with that!

Crossing the line in 1:49:13
Crossing the line in 1:49:13

It was a quick turn around as I cheered Mandz and Greg on at the finish and jumped on my bike to meet Nate where the dirt road ends and there’s 5km to go.

I stopped at the final drink station and had a chat with the volunteer – and totally underestimated where Nate would be! He ran past and I quickly fumbled for my helmet said goodbye to my new friend and jumped on the bike to catch him, yes you read that right catch him 36km into his marathon!!

I couldn’t believe it – he was running so well! At about the 40km mark I mentioned that I had bbq chips in my bag for him when he finished, but in all honesty he didn’t even need that encouragement – he was almost finished and he was in awesome spirits!

The best part about this race was getting to share the start and finish with Nate – the small community event allowed me to ride the whole last section with him and quickly ditch my bike and grab some happy snaps as he crossed the line…

…in a stella 3:31:33 and  2nd in his age group and 5th overall!

My hero, finishing in 3:31:33!
My hero, finishing in 3:31:33!

What a legend!

We celebrated with some beers and a delicious lunch at The Brewery!

A successful weekend!

Now onwards and upwards to Port Macquarie 5 weeks and counting…