Thursday, September 14, 2006

Things That Make You Go "Gah!"

That is my new favorite written expression of disbelief, disgust, frustration (check the thesaurus there must be more) courtesy of Jen Lancaster (can't get enuf of her and am dangerously close to stalker material). Shh, I've already wrote a stalker letter titled "I am not an asshat". You have to read her to get that so buy her book or at least check out the jennsylvania link. Surprisingly, I have not heard back from her.
I snuck away at lunch to my fav chinese buffet (effectively wiping out any much needed calorie deficit I earned this morning) and read 2 very interesting things and one thing that made me laugh out loud.

First: Frazz came through as usual and made me laugh. I'm a word geek.

Second: From Outside magazine: sorta a guy mag but there's some exceptional writing and outstanding photography that's probably not getting the exposure it deserves. I am an adventure geek (who's afraid of heights...whatever).
This said by the wife of a great guy who used up his life too young: "But, Mark, there are so many ways to lose your life besides dying." Indeed.

Third: An article from the "Forum" section of the USA Today (I know, I know...but I didn't buy it; it was there when I sat down) discussing the season premiere of Survivor-Segregation Islands. I should probably have more of an opinion on what this means and why this is blowing up in their faces. I probably should boycott to make my little stand that this stunt won't entice me to watch it, thereby justifing this stunt to boost ratings. I's a game. And the contestants volunteered to participate for the chance to win a TON of money (I was going to say more money than I can shake a stick at but given the chance I'm pretty sure I'd do a bang-up job of waving the stick all over the damn place - triathlon's an expensive hobby). I just don't think racism is a game and I think this is just another example of how segregation, or the theory behind it, is becoming accepted again in our society. Here's an example, "The Nebraska Legislature created three school districts in Omaha designed along racial lines with whites, Hispanics and blacks receiving their own districts." In 2004!! Double GAH! I don't even know where to start...
And, no, I didn't make a fuss when they did the boys vs girls version. Mostly because I figured the girls would kick ass. But I didn't watch it either.

Thanks for reading another episode of "Erin's Soapbox".

Energy is the essence of life...

Energy is the essence of life. Every day you decide how you're going to use it by knowing what you want and what it takes to reach that goal, and by maintaining focus. -Oprah

The sun finally came out today. I am a Leo and my whole being just doesn't feel right if the sun isn't shining. I got back in the pool this morning for the first time in almost a month. Troubles seem to just slide away from my brain and I can deposit them into the bottom of the pool. With my face in the water no one can interrupt my thoughts which allows me to touch on alot of different thoughts or just concentrate on one at a time to the rhythm of my stroke punctuated by a flip turn. I take the same amount of strokes everytime I swim a length. I know this because of my breathing pattern. Repetition. Rhythm. Like the comfort in rocking a baby.

The triathlon season is winding down. Fall is the time for distance running...miles in the bank for next year. Long, mentally challenging rides on the bike trainer in the winter. Last big race here in STL. Hope to volunteer. The general rule is...if you're not racing you should be volunteering. Makes sense to me because I couldn't do what I do without volunteers. You get what you give. Monika, one of the girls from the tri club (who was also with me at the start of the bonkfest of a bike ride I wrote about back in July) finished her first IRONMAN race in WI last weekend. Otherwise known as IM MOO. 15+ hours of racing. Great race report here:

But I really liked how she summarized WHY she does it. It resonated with me (because I've been asked so many times "How I find time to do it") because when someone understands "Why we do it" the how is just a given. My best girls have a HUGE event coming up and I know this will resonate with them too.

Monika's words posted at
Lessons learned:At the Friday night athletes meeting the physician in charge of the medical tent said that a good leisure activity should meet three criteria. It needs to be a challenge, require skill and help form social bonds (or something to that effect). He said Ironman certainly meets those criteria...... but so does golf. Then he also said that a leisure activity probably won’t reveal the meaning of life (but to let him know if anybody found it out there after all...). I was a little surprised at this bit, considering how very, very important Ironman is to a lot of the people there. It seemed weird that he would want to point out that it’s “just” a leisure time activity. On the other hand, I really liked what he said, because of course he is right and his slightly cynical view was refreshing after all the Ironman North America hyphe. Then the next day, while I was totally tickled to cross the finish line, it wasn’t a grand, life-changing moment. Neither was my first marathon. Or first half IM or any one moment for that matter. But here’s the thing: While the finish line wasn’t, the journey has been life changing in a quiet way. Setting goals and achieving them. Doing things I never thought I could. I am SO MUCH MORE confident and balanced and happy, not to mention healthier (well, maybe aside from this back pain...) and fitter. I know that I can achieve a lot if I put my mind to it. As mentioned way above, I actually saw the strongest indicator of this before the race, when I wasn’t anywhere near as nervous as I had anticipated. By finishing my training and sticking to it, I had already achieved so much of what I set out to do. This race was just the icing. (“ice” being a fitting term here...) I knew I could do it. And that quiet confidence is more important to me than the brief euphoria of a finish line. In addition, and just as importantly, I have found an incredible community of friends who are supportive and fun and interesting and definitely the best part of it all. None of this is probably unique to triathlon – but it sure works for me.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards. -Kierkegaard

Happy Friday.

Every stress hormone in my body sent out party invitations for a zit convention on my forehead. I'm too old for that aren't I? Seriously, buy some stock in much as I'm going to need it should send it through the ROOF!

Best wishes for light, quick and happy feet as my girls all join the 20-miler club this weekend. Lisa's already in!!!! That's like 2000+ calories ladies! It's all downhill from here.

No race report for me from the main event last weekend because things in my life just got too crazy to focus on racing. Even if it's playing. Sometimes life is serious. So, like most racers, whether it be due to injury or circumstances beyond their control, I have to enter a DNS (did not start) in the race log for 2006. There will be other races.

So, after a busy week, I surfed my usual haunts today and found this: Entertainment Weekly's top 50 teen movies of all time...

The eighties had the best teen movies by FAR...but this was a fun jog down memory lane. They totally dropped the ball by not including Footloose though. I think that should be in the top 10. Dirty Dancing should be on the list too. Am I missing any others?

Friday, September 01, 2006

Do, or do not. There is no 'try'." -Yoda

I know, enough with the triathlon stuff. After tomorrows race report I'll spare you all for awhile I imagine.
The weather's going to be perfect...cooler and overcast. It might make the race wetsuit legal which is a huge advantage for those who aren't strong swimmers but my sprint is so short it really doesn't matter. Checking the website this morning did NOTHING for my anxiety about the swim start tomorrow though....this is why:

In case any of you want some last-minute prep for Saturday's swim start - follow the training regimen in this little clip.

Youtube ROCKS!

In other news, I wore a dress today to work. (My $13 steal at the gap...Paula, you'd be proud!) One of the docs actually looked at me funny and asked me if I did something new with my hair. (Um, no...same straight mess as usual that needs a foil touch up) Yes, I'm a GIRL...not just invisible audiologist/mom. Shocking.