Yesterday started off like any other. I woke up, wrangled the dogs for a little while, then laced up my Salamon’s for some backyard hill sprints. My current training program calls for track speed work today, but in the wonderful world of trail running, that’s about irrelevant right now, and the more proficient I get on these hills (both up and down) the better off I’m going to be.
After about a million four of those, I did a quick Tough Mudder inspired strength finisher ala carrying logs. Check out this 2016-video that gives a good impression of what I’m in for…
There’s a quarter mile trail loop behind my house and I alternated 30 seconds overhead, 30 seconds out in front of me for a solid two loops with a chunk of a log that probably weighs about 20 pounds. My abs and quads were both pretty trashed, but I definitely felt like a badass afterward, so I did what any sane human being would in said circumstance…
Recently, I saw the movie “Soul Surfer.” If you’re not familiar with Bethany Hamilton’s story, she’s the young girl whose arm was bitten off by a huge shark while surfing in Hawaii on Halloween morning some years ago. This is still such an inspiring story, it influenced so many people and helped many of us to achieve more. One of my friends passed the GED test thanks to this story, she now helps other students to prepare for the GED with these free resources.
But let me remind you of the Bethany Hamilton’s story. She survived but of course lost her arm. The movie is the story of her efforts to get back in the water, relearn how to surf, compete in a surfing competition, fail to qualify, and resolve to work harder and eventually succeed in her dream of becoming a pro surfer. Talk about courage!
Bethenny failed to move on past the amateur surfing competition she would have owned had she had both arms, she almost gave up surfing. Though her veins were filled with salt water, she dreamt of surfing, and her entire world revolved around surfing (i.e. being homeschooled so she could hit the waves during peak times), she was going to turn her back on everything she was and figure out a new path. After her mission trip to Thailand, she decided she’s going to give surfing one more shot – all or nothing – surf or sink.
May 21st marked our first triathlon, the Queen City Tri. Since mid-January Veronica and I have been training nearly every single day for this event. We signed up for a beginners triathlon course at our local health club, Crossroads Fitness, and with about 18 other people we’ve been learning to swim, running together, and taking out the road bikes together.
The class has been incredible and has certainly provided the motivation, accountability, and structure we’ve needed in order to get in shape for the Tri. It’s safe to say, Veronica and I are in nearly the best shape of our lives because of this class.
The triathlon we chose to make our first was the Queen City Tri. It’s a “sprint” tri designed for newbies like us. Registration was limited to 90, and we heard that although the race filled up super quick, 57 of the 90 participants were first-timers. Pretty cool to see so many new triathletes considering Helena is a fairly small town and this is a pretty “local” event. Continue reading “Our First Triathlon ~ Queen City Tri”
Who are we really trying to kid here? Reason number 7 that I love to run was something I discovered this weekend at the Lee Foster Memorial 5 Mile Run in Saint Marys (being the 7th race of my life – and my quest to 30, I thought it was fitting). Let me start this recap by saying in the days leading up to this race, my motivation to go run it tanked dramatically. I don’t know why, but I was extremely nervous about this one.
I knew it was just a flat out and back, I knew I could run 5 miles (seriously, I just ran 10 the Monday before, and it wasn’t a flat out and back!), but for some reason, I thought I was going to choke. Like straight up get to mile 2, fall on my face, and die alone on the street everyone would make fun of me. I even enlisted my mother in law to ride along so that I couldn’t back out last minute. I don’t know how I could come off of just completing a Tough Mudder and get intimidated by a little local race, but it happened.
I’m so glad I got over it because this race was really a blast. I ran without my GPS and put on one of my favorite Clutch albums for some tunes, and just dropped the hammer. I soon found my pace with a girl close to my age and a man who was in his 70’s, but they both were keeping about 10 seconds faster per mile than I could.
December 26th, one day after Christmas, we hopped into the car at 4:30 a.m. and started driving south on what was to be a 3,000+ mile road trip. The road trip was initially planned for 2 reasons, 1-because we needed a vacation and 2-to visit my grandma in Phoenix.
Although driving from Helena to Phoenix and back is long enough in itself, we decided to extend the trip a few days and add a few stops in the Utah desert. Below is our day to day itinerary and an account of memories that will last us a lifetime.
Dec. 26th Day 1 was by far the longest day in the car. 13+ hours, 900+ miles from Helena Montana to Las Vegas, NV. We stayed at the Hilton, “just off” the strip. Apparently “Just off” the strip to someone from Vegas is WAY different then what I was expecting.
Never having been to the strip, I had no idea of the massive size of everything and how far apart everything really is. We explored the strip this night, and even managed to win a couple bucks in a penny slot! Continue reading “Road Trip to the Desert”