8 Weeks To Go

As I’m typing this I have to pinch myself because I simply cannot believe that there are only 8 weeks left until the Arizona Ironman!  It does not seem like that long ago that my family and I were volunteering for the event last November.  As volunteers we were able to sign up before the registration opened to the public, so my hubby and some friends and I bit the bullet and registered.  At the time it seemed so far away, however, as time seems to do lately, it has flown by.

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My daughter handing out water at our superhero themed aid station.

Training is going as good as can be expected.  I haven’t posted much about it because between shuttling kids around to school and activities, training, and working full-time, blogging has taken a backseat.  I have been averaging about 10 hours per week of training.  A typical week will include 3 sessions of each discipline…yep that means 9 workouts total.  How do I fit those into 7 days (really 6 since 1 day a week is a scheduled rest day)?  The 2 runs during the week that I do are rather short compared to my previous marathon training plans, so on run days I will also throw in my swim training.  That is getting a bit harder as the swims are progressing in distance, and therefore taking me more time since I’m still quite the slow swimmer.  However, I have enjoyed swimming after running as it seems to really loosen my legs up and I don’t get as sore.  I’ll have to remember this and keep this practice when I get back to “just” training for a marathon.  Yes, you did catch that correctly, I will be switching back to marathon training post Ironman (and after a good long recovery period).  I’m sure there will also be more triathlons in my future, as well, but I need some time to get back to my first love after all this Ironman craziness.

As if I’m not already nervous enough with just 8 weeks to go, here is a picture of the start of last year’s race.  I can’t even begin to wrap my brain around what it will be like to be in the water with 2,500+ people.  Did I really sign up to do this?!

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2014 MS Bike Ride

This weekend I rode in the New Mexico MS 150 Bike Ride for the third year in a row. After my diagnosis in March of 2012 I knew that staying active was more important than ever and to be able to do that while giving back to this wonderful cause has been a blessing.  I am very aware that due to the unpredictable nature of MS there may come a day that I cannot run marathons, do triathlons, or ride a bike anymore, so I feel that it is my duty to do what I can now in the present.

I love doing this ride every year because it is such an uplifting weekend with people coming together to raise money for MS research and awareness.  Here are some pictures from the weekend’s festivities:

This is Day 1, my husband, Rick, David (a friend of mine for over 27 years!), me, then another Rick (who has been a friend for 25 years!)

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The “Ricks” taking a well deserved break at a rest stop around mile 80.

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The end of Day 1 and 150+ miles done!  There may have been a little fall at the end of Day 1 at the finish line.  Note to self: Don’t attempt to high-five someone while still riding your bike…taking a hand of the bars before coming to a complete stop may not be the smartest idea after 100 miles.

Time to refuel and get ready to ride again the next day. IMG_7770

Day 2:  We were joined by Brian, another great friend of over 27 years (boy am I feeling old).IMG_7775

I got to reunite with Larry, a fellow MSer friend from Colorado who comes to New Mexico to do the ride every year.  He is one tough cyclist (I suppose all those mountains in Colorado make for good training!).  I enjoy seeing him and his wife every year.  Larry is a source of inspiration and support to me, for which I am very grateful.

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Celebrating after a tough climb on the course:

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I’m overwhelmed by the love and support:

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Day 2 and 50+ miles complete!  And there was yet another fall off the bike at some point during this ride…something to do with a washed out road, lots of sand and not being able to unclip in time.  Oh well!

Time to celebrate, recover and get back to Ironman training!

photoTo sum up this amazing weekend, here is what I posted on Facebook to my friends and family.  I am truly blessed.

Words simply cannot describe the gratitude I feel in my heart after this weekend’s MS Bike Ride. While I never would have chosen to be stricken with this disease that has no cure, I am beyond blessed by the outpouring of support. From our friends that donated, to those that prayed for us, to those that watched our kids so Rick and I could ride together (thank you Kelly Martin!), to those that rode this year and in years past, to my friends that also live daily with the uncertainty of MS…thank you for helping me not feel like I’m going through this alone.