Friday, June 20, 2008


Haven't done much post-race training. We walked for about an hour when we were in Hawaii. And then I ran for 40 minutes on Wednesday. I've been using every excuse to not train. Even so, already I'm thinking about that Vikingman, and already I'm thinking I enjoyed it. Don't get me wrong; I hated the bike and swim part, but I quite enjoyed the run part. Every triathlete does this. Give them some down time and they start thinking about the next race, what they want to do next, whether the last race was really worth it or not, etc. And usually, if triathlon really gets in your blood, you almost always want to do another one.

But a big reason why the Vikingman was so fun for me was because it was in my home town. We began the swim next to the house where my young women's leader lived. We swam past my best friend Keri's old neighborhood. We biked past my dad's old carlot and our family's old home. On the way in, I biked past my old church building and my old elementary school, the same school my grandmother and father graduated from. On the run, I got to see parts of Heyburn I haven't been to in close to 15 years. I ran past John Koyle's house. John Koyle was my first-grade crush. He invited me to his birthday party, and my mom dressed me in a dress. But I still managed to keep my dress clutched between my legs when competing in the head-standing contest. So many memories came flooding back to me to keep me company during the long day. I thought of many old friends I'd made through my early burglary years (thanks for that, Morrissey). I treasured the memories.

Kulani and I like the idea of doing triathlons in far away and exotic places. The idea behind it being we can train hard and do the race, then spend the rest of the week gorging the local food and taking in the local culture. Heyburn isn't a far away or exotic place, but for me, it was a great trip down memory lane.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

I ... did ... it

Hardest ... Half-Ironman ... Ever. Well, maybe not ever, but it was difficult. We had head winds at 25-35 mph for the swim and bike. While swimming, I'd come up to breathe, and a big wave would smack me in the face. It took me 57 minutes on the swim. I had the second slowest women's time. The Snake River has a huge current that should have allowed me to do the swim in 35 minutes. Had there not been a current, I'd probably still be out in that river trying to finish. The bike was also awful. The head wind allowed me to average possibly 11 mph for the first 23 miles. On the way back, without any trouble at all, I reached as high as 32 mph. Yeah, the tail wind was awesome, but not worth the head wind. And then the run. Again, head winds and tail winds. I thought I was standing still, but I didn't turn a too bad half marathon: 2 hours 22 minutes. I really contemplated quitting many, many times. My dad was one of the helpers in the boat making sure people didn't drown. I swam up to his boat, but actually didn't get in. My total time: 7 hours 30 minutes. Slower than even Hawaii's difficult course. i just kept telling myself: the Vikingman will not beat me. I will beat it. I will be the viktor. I will be--the Vikingman!

I really do think I'm done with this distance until Lilia is old enough to watch the girls. I say that now, but this time, I think I'm sticking by it.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


As in, my stomach is in ... knots. The Vikingman half-ironman is three days away. The anticipation of the race is almost worse than the race itself. I just called my dad and he said the Snake's temperature is at a balmy 55 degrees. We'll definitely be wearing our skull caps. The projected forecast for the race is a high of 63. I just hope the Idaho winds aren't blowing. It reminds me of the old joke that still isn't funny: Why is Idaho so windy? Because Utah sucks. My cousins from Utah would try to turn that joke around, but it never made sense to me, because Utah isn't nearly as windy as Idaho.

I'm having a hard time doing anything because of my jitters. I just need to calm down. I remind myself of the following truths.

I would rather do the Vikingman than:
  • repeat high school.
  • pass a chemistry class.
  • file for bankruptcy.
  • be a sprinter.
  • clean-up my house after a tornado.
  • sell books door-to-door.
  • go through a divorce.
  • encounter a rattle snake.

Life's partially about conquering one's fears. Nothing like a triathlon to remind me.