Monday, May 31, 2010

Long Time No Blog

So, hey, haven't blogged in a while. This past week has been bad (burned arm! no motivation to work out! wedding!), but I do have much to talk about ... and will do so ... not today.

But, to give you a preview of what is coming soon ...

- The story of the past week ... of why I probably had the crappiest week of the month in terms of working out
- How second degree burns are fun
- BolderBOULDER recap (without many pictures. if there was ever a race for me to decide not to run with a camera ...)
- May round-up

So, exciting things from me (and I'm sure from brandon as well) coming here soon.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Overdue post

It's been too long since I've blogged, and there's much to discuss. Most good, some not so good, but all worthy of being spoken of.

I started writing a paragraph about how shitty this hotel is, but I realized I already did that earlier. And if I know you, my readers, you're all probably tired of hearing me whine about the living conditions here. But too bad, you're getting another dose.

Over the weekend, my lungs got a taste of fresh mountain air. Ahh, 6,000 feet. How I miss you. But it made me realize what filth I'm living in when it comes to the Peartree Inn. And that filth became fully realized when I coughed up blood. That's right. I was literally coughing up blood. Thankfully, it only happened once all weekend, but still. Cause for concern, obviously.

This further was a concern on Saturday when T and I went for a run. Earlier that morning, I accomplished a milestone in swimming 1600 meters. For those of you counting, that is 1 mile. Woohoo, swam a mile! The night before, I only swam 800 meters due to T having to play a double header in softball. So that was 2400 meters swam in less then 10 hours. Good for me, sure. But later on our planned run of 7 miles, I wasn't able to continue. I was having a pain in my chest that was brutal and quite frankly, unbearable. I chocked it up to three things: running at altitude for the first time since I had left for training, the problems I'm having with the hotel, and having run after working out pretty hard in the previous 24 hours. Oh, and winds at 40 mph don't help the things either.

Sunday though. My goodness. Where do I begin? The weather in St. Louis has been unbearable. Humid. Hot. Stormy. Sucky. Denver on Sunday. High of 78. Minimal wind. Humidity of 16%. A dewpoint of 28. So you can probably guess what we did that day.

It was time to get in a long ride. I've made it no secret how much I've missed my bike, and I'm realizing the triathlons are getting closer and closer. So it was a great day to get some serious mileage in. And we did just that. We rode the Platte River Trail from C-470 all the way to REI in Denver. The ride out was just amazing. I was really settling into a nice groove, averaging close to 19 miles an hour the whole ride. Both T and I were passing cyclist after cyclist, and my lord in heaven there were a lot of them out there that day. Not that I blame them.

At REI, I called it the cyclist's Mecca. Good god there were a lot of bikes out there. I'd estimate at any given time, there were 60 cyclists enjoying the patio and Starbucks that REI offers. T and I of course partook in Starbucks and made some small talk with another cyclist.

On the ride back, it was definitely getting windier, and battling that wasn't great. Also, my body isn't used to riding that far yet this year, so it needed more breaks then I would have liked, but overall, it wasn't too shabby. In fact, it was just a nice refreshing ride that just felt good. Again, I thought of freedom.

Anyway, Bolder Boulder is coming up this weekend, and I am just pumped! First 10K of the season and it's time to kick some butt! Kind of like our friend Kris did in the TC One mile run. Also, a special shoutout to our friend over at Run, Lindsey Ann, Run for finding a possible half-marathon in her living place of Marquette. I'm rooting for all my fellow bloggers to do well in their upcoming races. Let's do it, athletes!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Question ...

... should I feel bad about not putting in my run today when the winds in Denver were 32 mph gusting up to 63 mph? Brandon says no, but part of me still feels guilty I didn't run today.

Just curious ...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Adventures in Cycling ...

... and a few other random thoughts! (warning: long post ahead ... but it's a good one!)

So I've really been meaning to write this post for a week now, but lazy me just finally got around to uploading pictures and the post really needs to be told with pictures.

Anyway, back to where I left you off last week ... I had done a very slow, but social run with my brother's girlfriend. That evening was mid-60s and overcast - in otherwords, fairly pleasant.

The next day ended up being cold, so I scrapped my plan to ride the 470 trail and instead, hopped on the stationary bike and about died. For whatever reason, it was incredibly, painfully hard AND I had weird issues with the bike so I gave up after about 15 minutes. That evening, I went to swim and forced 1200m despite an overly chlorinated pool that made me feel like my mouth had some sort of sandpapery fuzz growing in it. Seriously, that's the best way I can describe it; it was so nasty.

Wednesday was the day I really wanted to blog about, however. It was my off day from work so I had a nice ride and a long run planned. Then, I woke up, went downstairs, and looked outside.

5.12 Snow
Oh. Fabulous.

However, I noticed that, while there was snow on the ground, the sidewalks and streets were merely wet. Since I had planned on a longer, relatively flat ride on the Platte trail, I figured I could still get that in since it's a nice, paved trail. So, after breakfast, I hopped in the car and drove over to the trail. My normal parking area, which I noticed was nice and empty off the highway ... was nice and empty because the road accessing it was closed (probably because it's a dirt road and it was really wet). Peachy. Luckily, I knew of another parking lot right off the trail at a nature center I volunteered at a little bit in high school, so I hopped on over there, parked, and got ready to go.

5.12 Ride
Outside temp according to the Rav. Brrrrrrr.

5.12 Ride
Socks, cycling shoes, my warmest running tights over my cycling shorts ... workout tank, cycling jersey, cycling jacket thing I have, fleece jacket, rain jacket ... ear mitts and a toque jammed uncomfortably under my helmet ... cycling gloves over those one-size-fits-all "magic" gloves.

I hopped on the trail, not knowing how far I would go. I was right in that the trail wasn't snowy; just a little wet. It wasn't dangerously slick or anything though, which made me happy. I had gone maybe a mile and a half or so before my length decision was made for me.

5.12 Ride

The trail was fantastically under construction ... which it so wasn't last time I rode the Platte. In any case, I turned it around and headed back to the car ... saw my bike's odometer at about 3 miles ... and decided to get back on the trail the OTHER way. I rode down to where I usually park and then back again.

The whole time I never encountered another cyclist. I ran into two runners just finishing up at the beginning and I saw three whole walkers. Wusses. ;)

5.12 Ride

I only ended up going 6.29 miles total and stayed out for a little over 25 minutes (you do the math; it was slow, I know), but I was so proud of myself for getting out there that I felt like a rockstar.

I also learned that tri-specific cycling shoes (got lucky when getting my shoes), while nice, are not suitable for cold rides. Mine are very porous, meant to be worn barefoot after a swim and will probably help your feet dry out. NOT good when it's barely above freezing out.

I also got in a run that day. I had a long run scheduled for that day and I busted that shit out too. I was hoping to go about 7 miles and I thought the route I chose would get me there ... but fail. Almost, though - 6.92 miles. Did it in 1:15.23 which is still under an 11:00/mi (woot!), it was in the high-30s outside and I didn't walk until within the last mile thanks to this huge, bitch-ass hill.

Thursday was spent lifting and doing Wii Fit and Friday unexpectedly turned into an off day, which, in hind sight, was probably a good thing anyway ... particularly because I didn't feel like battling rain and wind for a run.

Saturday was a milestone in training in that I got in my first ever mile in the pool! I did it in two sections, but it counts. I did 1200 along with Brandon to help time him (he forgot his watch) and was going to stop there, but I really wanted to do 1600 so I continued on after and I did it! Woo!

Sunday was one last bike ride with Brandon before he had to go back to St. Louis for training.

5.16 Ride
Peace, love and cycling, man.

Monday turned into another off day, partially due to work. Weekends at work chew me up and spit me out ... especially when I end up running around non-stop on my shift.

Yesterday, despite the freaking wind, I got in a run AND a lift. I do want to mention something about this run ... The run was 4.69 miles. The downhill portion of the run is entirely in the first mile, mile and a half. The rest is either relatively flat or uphill. I took Brandon on this route once and he hated it so much that he vowed never to ever do it again (and he hasn't).

But, I wanted between a 4 and 5 mile run and more toward the 5 end. So ... I decided to do this run. The way I do the loop, the last killer hill ends up being on this dirt trail that follows the power lines in the area.

This hill is .92 miles long and one gains 159 feet in elevation over that mile (5802.8 to 5961.5). OUCH. I was also running INTO the wind at this point. The wind got so bad at one point that I literally could not run anymore and had to walk. However, I made my feet start moving again. A little over halfway up, a pair of runners joined the trail from one of its offshoots. The hill was hurting, but with them behind me, I refused to stop running and kept on plugging upward. Those two ended up being the motivation for getting through the last part of that run.

It hurt, and hurt a lot (my knee's bugging me a tad today), but I did it, when earlier this spring I would have let the winds defeat me.

Today I still have yet to swim (distance undetermined, but over 1000m), but I did get back on the bike due to having a little baby shift at work today. I went back to the Platte trail, but this time, from the other end of it downtown. I also took a few pictures along the way ...

5.19 Ride
Take a guess at what's wrong. Hint: there were several of these signs due to this damn detour and the same mistake was on EVERY SINGLE ONE. I pity our society.

5.19 Ride
Random sidewalk/trail "art."

5.19 Ride
So the REI Denver flagship store has all of these clocks showing the time at all different places around the world. This one shows the time at l'Alpe d'Huez, one of the stages of the Tour de France.

5.19 Ride
The Denver B*Cycle station at REI. These are bike rental stations that are scattered all around the metro. You can rent one for a day or a week or a month or get a yearly membership and it's a fun, healthy way of getting around.

Later this week will be more running, more swimming, more lifting and a long (30 mi) ride with Brandon once he gets his ass back in town.

Speaking of that "long" ride ... I'm sure that number seems short to some of you. I'm sure our long run distances of 7 miles seem short.

However, I was going back through my tri log for the year and noticed the comment from a run on January 4. It was a 3.19 mile run: "1st long run since Turkey Trot" and "tough, long, slow run but felt so happy to get in a long run!"

Look at that. LONG run. That's our short run now. Brandon and I have come a long way, but we know we still have a long way to go. :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010


I'm back in Denver this weekend. And while it's a ridiculously short weekend (sad) it's given me a lot of wonderful opportunities. For instance, I got new shoes yesterday. :-) I also got a new T-shirt and polo at American Eagle. Could I have gotten this stuff in St. Louis? Of course. But I was out with the other member of Team Baby Dinosaur and it was just an enjoyable experience.

When I was planning on coming back into town this weekend, my main concern was hitting the parts of the tri that I am missing due to being away and on the road. Obviously those are swimming and cycling. I woke up around 6 yesterday and was on my bike and on the road by 7. When I was riding, there were very few cars on the road. The shrubbery was nice and green. The air felt clean and happy. Overall, it was just a pleasant experience. And I had one of those "moments" when I was pedaling.

Triathlon gives you freedom.

It gives you the freedom to do all three sports, in various capacities. You can do however much of one sport you want. You can choose to double up your workouts. You can choose how far to ride, or to do drills in the pool, or to do sprints on a track. You have so many options with triathlon. It gives you a freedom that is just unequaled by any other sport.

Yesterday, I felt free. I realized that I missed being able to cycle when I want to, to swim at the gym. And being back in Denver has given me that freedom. I can't wait for that freedom again next weekend!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Taking a break...

No, not from working out...from the grind! We're on a lunch break at Flight Safety in St. Louis and I figured I'd take this time to write a blog post about my activity this week. Cause needless to say, it's been interesting.

When I was in Indy, we were staying in a great hotel in a great location. It was perfect for running and they also had an exercise bike for me to keep up with. Fast forward to this week. Got to St. Louis on Monday and arrived at the Pear Tree Inn. It's by Drury Hotels. Now, I've stayed in some dumpy hotels in my day, but this one is near the top in terms of dumpiness. To make matters worse, I still have a roommate in a very small hotel room. To make matters worse further, this hotel is in what my sim partner, who lives in St. Louis, describes as "the ghetto of St. Louis". He advised me not to run outside.

Well, me being Mr. Runner McGee lately (seriously, I have been), I have decided to pass on his advice. I can't not run. Every run, I feel better about myself and feel like I'm closer to finding infinity. So I decided ghetto or no ghetto, I'm running!

My first run was on Monday. I attempted to run on the treadmill, but that lasted for about 3 minutes. I then said f it and went outside, running just over 3 miles. My next run came on Wednesday, where I ran just under 4 miles in some ridiculous humidity. Finally, yesterday, I ran just over 7 miles in conditions that T said sounded like "pea soup". I was sweating .4 miles into the run and when I got back, you could literally scrape salt off my eyelids.

On Tuesday, I did some yoga to relax my muscles. This weekend I'm going back to Denver to be reunited with the other member of Team Baby Dinosaur (yay!) and finally will get the opportunity to swim and cycle. Man, do I miss my bike and pool!

The running will continue next week, since the rest of the ground school people (there's 3 going on at once) have decided to join us. I figure if I run in a group, I'll be safer for multiple reasons.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Running Socially

While I've run a whole bunch with Brandon, I don't consider myself a social runner. The most social I get on runs is nodding, smiling (although I'm sure it seems more like grimacing most of the time) and waving to other runners/cyclists that I pass.

No, what I mean is having a running buddy to chat with and pass the time with and have FUN with out on the run. When Brandon and I hiked Sabino, some of the runners we saw were hardcore, sure. But there were also a few groups, both male and female, that were chatting the whole time up and the whole time back down.

I tried this today. Brandon and I have been trying to get my brother's girlfriend, Nicole, out for a run for a while now. With both of our respective significant others out of town currently, I succeeded tonight.

So, I took Nicole out on my short run for the week (3.19mi) and took it slow ... which I didn't mind due to a few reasons:
1. I wanted to stick with her on this
2. She started chatting right off the bat and I knew my normal pace wouldn't let me keep talking
3. The slow pace made me really concentrate on my form
4. I noticed after the run my feet weren't killing me like they have been lately

It ended up being probably the slowest run I've done so far this year (or close to it), with a 36:44.45 time and an 11:31.05/mi pace, but for the most part, I don't care.


Because, surprise surprise, the run was FUN. I actually really enjoyed being out there chatting on the run. The run also felt easy, even up the hills. I know it wasn't as easy for Nicole since she hasn't been running as much as I have lately, but I know she enjoyed herself as well.

So, while it was a lot slower than I'm used to and it kills my monthly/yearly average (boo. oh well), it was totally worth it to be able to truly enjoy a run for a change ... which is tough given the damn hills around here. ;)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Growing up

I've been told I'm not the most mature individual in the world (no argument from me) and I've also been told that I never really grew up (also no argument from me). As far as I'm concerned, I had to enter the real world way too early (I was 22 when I got hired at my first airline. 22 years old and suddenly I was looked at as a professional by thousands of people) and I think me acting like a kid allows me to rebel against that awfulness.

But why am I bringing that up? Because I realized today that I am growing up in other ways. Ways that are bettering me as a person and as a healthy human being. Today, I did a little over 5 miles in Indy. That brings my total for the week over 15 miles. First time in my history that has happened. And it feels really good! But that's not the reason I mention this...I think I'm growing up mentally a lot more. Here's why.

Back in the day, (like earlier this year) I would do 3-4 mile runs and be super amazed with myself and the rest of the week would be a major letdown. It was like "oh boy, I ran a few miles! I can slack now!" That's not the case anymore. Now a short run for me is 3 miles. 4-5 miles are becoming the norm, not the exception. And I'm starting to run longer distances too. I did a 7 miler this week for the first time. Granted, I took it very very slow, but still, I got out there and did it.

The point is, that I seem to be growing up mentally quite a bit this season. I don't know if it's the fact that once again in my life, I had to make changes on the fly (no pun intended) and score a job because my old one had been yanked out from under my feet, or the fact that I see the world in a little bit different perspective. Regardless, I am definitely maturing in the exercise department.

But I still reserve the right to play with Legos and color. :-)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Why Does Growth Hurt?

So. Ran 6 miles again (well, 6.16 to be accurate) this morning. Did the same loop that Brandon and I did a few weeks ago.

First walk was just a bit after the first walk last time I did this route, on this mean mother of a hill. It's short, only .10/mi from bottom to top, but you gain 38 feet of elevation (5802-5840) in that tenth of a mile. It HURTS.

From then on, I had to walk quite a bit ... mostly because it was almost entirely uphill on the way home.

Still, despite all the miserable walking and the beginnings of blisters on my feet (damn you BodyGlide) ... I chopped my time down quite a bit.

4.20.2010: 6.16 mi in 1:08:16 ... 11:04.94/mi
5.6.2010: 6.16 mi in 1:06:40 ... 10:49.35/mi

Just cranking my way until BolderBOULDER I guess ... I'm just concerned about being able to run that much AFTER a 1500m swim and AFTER a ... 42k bike or whatever the Oly distance bike is. Ugh. I've got three months to try my damnedest to do it, though.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Random Cycling Post

Went out on a bike ride today. Haven't been getting on the bike too much lately and I wanted to remedy that. Since I had the day off, I decided to drive to the Platte River trail for some mostly flat (well, as flat as this state can be) riding.

It was rough. I can tell I haven't cycled as much this year because it hurt and hurt quite a bit ... and it was a shortish (though longest this year) ride! Stopped at my turnaround point and at Hudson Gardens (bladder relief) ... fought some wind (my lungs hurt) and the weird, weird weather. Seriously, I was on the bike actually pedaling for just over 40 minutes and I swear the temperature varied between 55 and 70 degrees. No joke.

Still, a few perks:
- longest ride yet this season (woo, a whole 11.19mi)
- kept a good cadence (91 avg)
- speed wasn't as bad as it could have been given everything (16.43 mph avg)

However, I don't want to do most of my rides on the Platte. Most need to be on the C-470 trail ... which is hilly mchilly. I think I also need to get on the stationary bike and just spin as well as lift, lift, lift.

Good thing my first tri is still about two months away and RattleSnake is in three.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

April Round-Up

We all know how March wasn't good. I personally didn't think April was that fantastic on first look back, but we'll see how that thought changes over the course of this post.

The month started out really well, with a two-a-day on Easter and somehow still managing to squeeze in some exercise on a vacation to the desert.

The middle of the month brought struggles in terms of everything but running ... mostly due to the fact that we were forced out of our gym due to renovations and herded to another gym. This other gym had a pool that was almost impossible to get into and about 1329754 people inside it ... thanks to our and another gym being closed for renovations, an old location's members transferring there PLUS all the new sign-ups for it being a fancy new gym. Brandon and I HATED it there and tried to avoid working out there.

The end of the month brought our first race of the season, the Cherry Creek Sneak ... and more off days than I would have liked, mostly due to preparing for Brandon's departure.

Still, there were perks, too:
- bought a wetsuit
- broke down and bought a Timex Ironman watch
- in theory registered for USAT ... and we're still waiting for our crap even though our checks have been cashed
- raced the Sneak, qualifying for BolderBOULDER in the process
- registered for both the BB and for our Olympic Tri, RattleSnake.
- went over six miles for the first time

And now, the numbers:

Running: 37.92 miles (average went down one whole second/mile)
Swimming: 2.86 miles (average went down about 30 seconds/mile. also did a few swim interval workouts)
Cycling: 15.15 miles (average speed went up by about half an mph)
Lifting: three sessions ... two of which were literal crap ... but I guess they still count
Other: one session of Wii Fit, one hike, one yoga session, one softball game

Speaking of the latter, I am on a work softball team again. It's not like I really sweat during those games (oh co-rec ...), but they'll be a good, fun supplement.

Going back to the numbers, there's a few things to notice. First of all, the running. I beat my previous highest month by 12.01 miles. That's HUGE. Secondly, the swimming. My highest month's total in swimming was back in January and even though that's kind of gone by the wayside, it went up from March so small victory there. Thirdly, the cycling. Yes, it's improved. But those numbers need to be a lot bigger than the running numbers. I know that I'm kind of focusing on running FOR NOW due to the BB, but I don't want to leave myself wanting on the bike on race day like I have for the past two years. Finally, the lifting. I know most lifting needs to be done and should be done in the offseason, but I don't think it's too late to try to squeeze in some more strength training.

To finish this post, I think Brandon and I nailed our theme of "Step It Up." May's theme is stolen from a BB shirt from a few years ago - "Altitude Attitude." It fits because of its relation to the BolderBOULDER, our big race this month ... and also because of where we live and train. Brandon's at sea level for most of this month, so he needs to train with the attitude of being at altitude. Me, I just have to deal with the altitude, with the attitude that it's going to make me a stronger athlete.

April Recap

April's theme for the month was Step it Up. Why not, right? We had our first race of the season in April (the Cherry Creek Sneak 5 miler) and triathlon season is creeping up fast. So it was time to rebound from a somewhat crappy March and grind it out.

And step it up we did! My mileage total in terms of running was amazing. (for me. For some of you, it wasn't much, but shut up! For me it's good!) I also swam quite a bit and did some other working out that balanced everything.

The one area I need to improve on/do more of is cycling. I am just not getting out there enough, and with the tris coming up, I really need to add to my mileage. My cycling, quite frankly, has been unacceptable. And with me being in Indianapolis/St. Louis for the next month, I will not have easy access to my bike. However, on weekends, I will be in Denver and plan on utilizing my Trek quite a bit in Denver.

That being said, let's look at the totals for the month, shall we?:

Running - 42.19 miles
Swimming - 4.13 miles
Cycling - 15.32 miles
Swim intervals - two
two a days - one
Wii Fit - one
Yoga - two
Lifting - two
Hiking - one
Off - 7

So you take a look at this, and it's pretty impressive. I had my highest month running total EVER, my highest swimming month total EVER, and again, my workouts were very balanced. Factor in the fact I'm increasing my distance in running as well. And again, there's some stuff I need to work on. I gotta work on my diet still. I am snacking too much and not good snacks. I need to continue to hydrate properly. And I need to do some more two a days. Especially with the downtime that I'll have in St. Louis and Indy, even though it doesn't feel like a lot of downtime.

Alright May. Bring it on. :-)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

WETSUITS! ... a.k.a. Overdue Tucson Post

I should be eating dinner right now so I can swim later, but work chewed me up and spit me out this weekend. This means, of course, an evening of blogging, dinner, making Monday's lunch and crashing out early.

Tomorrow will hopefully mean April's recap post ... which I was going to do tonight but I've been talking about this damn post forever so FINE HERE IT IS.

So while in Arizona we did a little keeping healthy beyond just walking around a ridiculous amount at all the touristy-type stuff, like the Pima Air Museum and the Desert Museum.

We managed to run one day in the already oppressive April heat (no, seriously; it got into the 90s while we were there) and did a little bit of lifting as well in the hotel fitness center.

Our big athletic-y day was Saturday ... the day of the Sabino Canyon hike and of TriSports.

We started off and Brandon was happy and ready to go.

Sabino Canyon Hike

Enjoying the cactus and the walk itself, we stopped for a photo.

Sabino Canyon Hike
Hard to notice, but we're actually both wearing our My Way or the Tri Way shirts!

Though it was already getting warm (around 8:30am and in the 80s), we kept soldiering on.

Sabino Canyon Hike
The Timbuk2 is carting around water and sunscreen and phones and money and all that crap.

There were a few areas with bridges that were submerged in water and Brandon's socks got soaked, so we stopped for a minute to let his shoes and socks dry out.

Sabino Canyon Hike
He didn't wear his Drymax socks like I did ... even though I *did* end up drenching mine to the point of being damp for two days on the way back down ... Yep. I broke the Drymax on this hike.

The trail wasn't all that horribly long - only 3.7 miles to the top (and we took the paved route unlike the rest of the family), but hills are hills, man. We saw tons of runners going both ways and promised ourselves to join them if we were to ever come back.

Still, after lots and lots of gorgeous cacti and a few more flooded bridges, we reached the top.

Sabino Canyon Hike
Brandon at the top!

Sabino Canyon Hike
Me at the top!

We heard from my dad that there was supposed to be a waterfall at the top so we hiked around for a while off the auxiliary trails looking for it, but to no avail. We also waited for the rest of the party (my dad, brother and brother's girlfriend) to show up, but they didn't. We were getting sick of waiting, so we began the descent back down and out the canyon.

Sabino Canyon Hike
Loved these signs of warning for the cyclists ... of which there are few. Cyclists have very limited hours of use for the trail ... probably due to the crazy buses that go up and down the road that all pedestrian traffic tries like hell to avoid.

We finally made it back down ... and waited and waited and waited for the family to show up. While we were waiting, we saw a group of triathletes (most likely pros) all decked out in French and Canadian Ironman stuff (one dude had a killer kona-related tat on his leg), talking in French and, well, we were in awe.

Everyone finally showed up so we left, grabbed some In-N-Out for lunch and then zoomed off to the store.

TriSports Visit
Ahhh, triathlon mecca ...

We walked in, feeling extremely out of our league, but talked to the staff people anyway to get some wetsuits. We were split up, asked our heights and weights and given a wetsuit to try out. Brandon had to try on one or two, but I got mine on the first go-round.

TriSports Visit
Brandon getting into his wetsuit. This was the first he tried on that ultimately didn't work ... see the bunching at the knees?

TriSports Visit
Brandon testing out the suit in the store's endless pool. How cool is that? The pool also had mirrors on the bottom so you could check your form. Obviously Brandon points this out to dense me AFTER I was done swimming.

Wetsuits chosen, we shopped around a bit, each getting a race belt and some gels. I also got a bento box (basically a little pouch you attach to the TOP of your frame to hold food/whatnot) and Jef Mallet's book Trizophrenia ... which I read later and was hysterical. HIGHLY recommend.

The best part was that the store was celebrating its 10th birthday ... so everything (EVERYTHING) was 20% off! I got all my assorted crap for less than the original cost of my wetsuit alone, so I was a very happy person.

In the end, Brandon and I weirdly enough ended up with the same wetsuit ... BlueSeventy Reactions. I guess it makes sense though ... we basically have the same running shoe right now as well as the same bike. And goggles. Why not wetsuits too, right?

My pretty new wetsuit!

Brandon holding up our wetsuits.

Unfortunately, this happy story has a sad postscript. After we got back home to Denver ... we learned that the powers that be for Ironman banned all wetsuits made from neoprene (and some other synthetic rubbers) and suits of a certain thickness. Our new BlueSeventys? Made from neoprene. Which really freaking sucks, because we were HOPING to have these suits for a few years and wear them for IM 70.3 Boulder next year. Now though ... ugh.

I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it ... and if we have to go back down to Tucson to have another wetsuit adventure ... so be it.