Saturday, May 31, 2008

End Of The Montgomery Co. Triple

Montgomery County Triple Finishers
(minus Evan)

I went back down to The Woodlands today for the David's Dream Run 5K, the last leg of the Montgomery County Triple.  It was not an event without it's share of weirdness.  It all started out normal.  Ken and I pulled up at Market Street, and immediately ran into Sara.

Sara asked me if I had read the story behind David's Dream Run, so I told her I hadn't.  She informed me that David was a boy who lived in a bubble that had passed away about 13 years ago.  I don't know how many of you are Seinfeld fans, but after she told me that I couldn't get the Seinfeld bubble boy out of my head.  The proceeds from the race went to Texas Children's Hospital, and it is a great cause, and I know this is horrible, but I couldn't quit laughing to myself.  I know - I'm going to hell!  Please forgive me!

Anyway, next we picked up our races packets.  Apparently, everyone either got a size large or extra large shirt.  What the heck?  It looks like a nightgown on me.  Why did they even ask what size shirt we wanted on the entry form if they were going to give everyone a large?!

Then we found out that the race didn't actually start until 8:30, not 8:00 like the website said. So Sara and I headed over to the HEB to use the facilities.  While we were in the bathroom a woman and two young girls came in.  One of the young girls (probably around 16) told her friends that she could not use the restroom if they were in there too because she had a nervous bladder, and she asked them if they could wait outside.  Then she put her finger in my face and said "you better not listen either!".  I replied with a simple "ok", but I felt more like saying "get your friggin' finger outta my face you freak!".   For the record - I listened.  It sounded the same as when anyone else does it.  Geez...weirdo!

Sara, Ken, Jon, Bill, Karen, Evan and myself stood around chatting while waiting for the race to start.  It was the usual discussion for this time of year.  The heat, the humidity, etc.  Ken wouldn't stop looking for John Cook. (fellow SHRC member who made the first two legs of the triple, but was MIA for the Dream Run)

Finally, time to run.  I went out way too fast, as usual.  I was chasing Suzy Shreiber.  Bad idea.  I hung with her for about a mile and a half, and then died.  I'm not sure why I insist on doing this.  I mean, I know it doesn't work well for me, but I can not make myself start out slow.  Very frustrating!  I ended up 4th in the 30-39 age group with a time of 27:07.

The race itself was pretty uneventful, other than some crazy guy with a baby jogger nearly plowed me over.  The guy was flying.  I'm convinced the thing had a little motor, and was actually pulling him.  One thing for sure, he needs to work on his steering!  It's a miracle he didn't take out an innocent achilles tendon.

After a really long wait with REALLY loud top 40's music and the occasional Tejano hit, the awards ceremony was underway.  (chip problems...ugh!)  I was all prepared to cheer on Sara who placed 3rd in her age group and Ken who we thought had placed 2nd in his age group.  When they didn't call out Sara's name, we realized that they were only giving out awards two deep.  And, when they didn't call out Ken's name, we realized after they fixed the chip problems he was bumped to 3rd place.  Bummer.  No awards for SHRC.  Ten year age groups with awards only two deep - that STINKS!  However, it did make my 4th place finish less annoying!

At the end of the awards ceremony Jon took over the mic, and told the remaining crowd a little about the Montgomery Co. Triple.  Then he named Jacob and Joseph Mazone the top male finishers, and Me and Sara the top female finishers.  My first overall female finish.  Out of a field of 4....WooHoo!  I got three more pine cones to add to my collection.  Thirteen out of the fourteen MCT finishers were recognized and given an award.  Evan left early, so he missed out on his piece of wood.  Motocross something or other...dangerous!

We all called it a wrap and went home.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Over Ambitious?

Well, since my horrible swim experience at the Silverlake Tri, I've been swimming like crazy.  Yesterday I signed up for the Tejas Tri in Sugar Land on June 8th.  It has a 600 yd open water swim...yikes!  I'm determined to do this one with a little more grace, and far less tears.  I loved the triathlon experience as a whole, so I can't keep letting the swim intimidate me.  I WILL get over my fear! (trying to psych myself up here)

Yesterday I swam 600 yds twice, timing myself both times.  In the pool, I'm doing this distance in about 13 minutes.  How that translates to open water...I have no idea.  I'm going to find a lake to practice in this weekend.

I also signed up for the Y Freedom Tri on June 29th in Pearland.  It's a 300 meter pool swim...heck yeah!

If anyone has any advice on goggles, it would be much appreciated.  Every pair I've tried fogs up on me.  Even the ones that say "anti-fog".  It's not really a big deal in the pool, but it's hard to sight buoys when you can't see, and trying to rinse the inside of my goggles out when I can't touch bottom is not an easy task for me.  Help.  This was a contributing factor to my Silverlake meltdown.


Hannah and I took advantage of the cooler temps this morning, and hit the road.  She rode her bike along side me while I ran.   It was great.  She carried my water bottle and pepper spray in her little bike basket, and didn't complain at all.  We went 3.5 miles, and she says she wants to go farther tomorrow.  Sweet!

Getting runs in when she is out of school has been a problem in the past, because I can't leave her alone.  Now her bike skills are good enough to come with me.  I'm so excited!  I won't have to run circles in my living room this summer!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Memorial Day Run...Walk

As you can tell by the look on my face, I was not overly excited about running yesterday morning.  It's just too danged hot, but I've already complained enough about that.  Waaaahhhh.

Ken graciously hosted the annual 7 Hills Memorial Day 5K and cookout at his house in the Timberwilde subdivision.  He set up a course that included one loop and a short out-and-back.  Garmin says it was right on.

I ran with Norman's oldest daughter, Chantel.  The last club run, I ran with the youngest of the Langwell girls, Deanna.  Now I just need to run a race with Colton, and I will have completed the trifecta.  Only problem is, I'm not sure I can keep up with Colton.

Chantel and I ran/walked the course, and did more talking than anything else.  32 minutes and something.  Just a leisure 10:00 am stroll through Timberwilde in sweltering heat.                                                                      

Thanks so much to the Johnson family for a great cookout!  I wish I could have stayed longer, but as usual, I had a house full of people waiting on me at home.  

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Brutal RTW

It happens every year around this time - I loose my will to run.  My last run before today was in Pearland at the Silverlake Tri.  I can't stand running in heat and humidity.  I know what you're thinking...who can?  But, seriously, I think I am overly sensitive to it.  It is very apparent in the crazy shade of red my face turns in high heat situations.  My high school basketball coach used to pull me out of the game because she thought I was dying.  Not wanting me to drop dead on her watch, I would have to beg to be put back in the game, and sometimes even ice my face.

Today at RTW, the second leg of the Montgomery County Triple, my face was crazy red.  Thanks to soaring humidity levels, the heat index at 8 o'clock this morning was already in the triple digits.  Ugh!  I did what I could do, but it wasn't pretty, and it hurt...bad!  Borderline torture.  It gave "for the love of pine cones" a whole new meaning.  

I zeroed in on Denise Van Kuiken.  I like to pick someone slightly faster than me and try to hang.  I shadowed her for about 1.3 miles, and then quickly faded.  I got a side stitch, which happens frequently to me this time of year.  I don't know if it's the heat or the fact that I'm running less, but I get them a lot in the summer.  Denise ended up finishing in 25:13, me in 26:52.  That is truly all I had.  Oh well.

My hat is off to Karen.  I would be willing to bet that out of the 98 people who ran RTW today, Karen is the only one who PR'd!  She broke 26 minutes for the first time today!  WooHoo!  I told her loosing all that gear would speed her up...or was it Coach Bill?  Either way, she was awesome!

Even though I repeated the phrase "I hate summer" numerous times today, I had a great time.  I've made lots of friends thru running, and lots of them were there today.  Best dollar I've ever spent!

When I got home JP was busy knocking the winter dust off the boat.  Time to take it out for it's summer test run before our slew of upcoming camping trips.  Jimmy Buffet and my song appropriate concoction (not frozen, but concoction all the same) quickly reminded me that I don't actually hate summer.  

We spent the day cruising around Lake Conroe watching the kids ski.  I say ski, but it's really wake boarding.  They are quick to tell me "mom, no one skis anymore...that's so eighties".  Being a former professional water skier and instructor, this is very hard for JP to accept.  Every once in a while he puts them in their place, and lets me pull him.  He throws on his 70's model ski (apparently they don't know how to make 'em nowadays), I put the Duran Duran cassette in the boom-box, and he tears it up 80's style. Her name is Rio and she dances on the sand... 

My plan for the summer:  

Short run.  Lots of sun. (with adequate SPF, of course) 

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Ride of Silence

My friend Keelie Hughes and myself headed over to Lufkin yesterday evening for a Ride of Silence.  This event, organized by Jeremy Webb, is held on May 21st in cities all over the world in memory of cyclist who have been injured or killed by motorist, and to raise awareness for biking safety.
Edwin wrote a great story about it for the Lufkin Daily News. read it

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

My First Tri Experience

First of all, let me just say, it's a whole heck of a lotta work to get your stuff together for a triathlon.  I must have gone over my list a million times.  Helmet-check. Towel-check. Goggles-check.  And so on, and so on.  All my rechecking, and I still somehow managed to leave the number that goes on your bike in my car, which was parked about a mile away.  In my infinite wisdom, I decided the best way to retrieve that number from my car was to run back and get it.  Um - nevermind the perfectly good bike I had with me?  I'm an idiot.

So, I ran back to get the number.  I passed Jon and Waverly as they were making their way to the start area.  I'm sure they were wondering why I was running down the street in the opposite direction of the race.  Once I made it back to the transition area with my number (100 - I thought that was a pretty cool number) I had about 10 minutes to get all my stuff set up.  The lady next to me brought her entire closet, so I didn't have much space, but I got everything laid out in what seemed like a logically ordered arrangement.  Off to the port-a-potty line.

Desperate times call for desperate measures - I went inside a port-a-potty with no shoes on.  I suddenly felt very Britney Spearsish, but I had no choice.  The only shoes I had were on my little towel in the transition area that was already closed off.  A second pair of shoes is something I will definitely add to my list for next time.

Sarah was waiting in line with me, and was giving me some last minute pointers and trying to ease my mind a little about the swimming.  While Sarah was trying to ease my mind, the lady behind me was scaring me to death.  She was going on and on about how hard open water swimming is, and how lots of people freak out, and how it's completely different from swimming in a pool (which is all I've been doing).   I left the port-a-potties thinking I was going to die, and with who knows what on the bottom of my feet!

I had about thirty minutes before my wave started, which I spent chatting with Jon, Waverly, Edwin, Cassie, Manny, and Sarah.  Then they called my wave, and it hit me - I'm not ready for this!  We all got in the water, and when the guy said "ok...10 seconds" I started to panic.  The gun sounded and we were off.  I hung back in the pack, but still managed to get kicked in the face almost immediately.  I did exactly what the scary lady in the port-a-potty line said.  I freaked out, inhaled some water, and couldn't get myself together enough to swim.  

I was headed for the rescue boat when I heard a familiar voice yelling words of encouragement in my direction.  I looked over at the bank, and Jon had run around the side of the lake and was cheering for me.  That "you can do it!" saved my race.  I decided I could do it.  I would just take it buoy to buoy.  I never could get my composure together enough to actually swim freestyle.  I did a doggie-paddle/breaststroke hybrid and stopped at every buoy.  

It took me a little over 13 minutes to swim 400 meters.  Pathetic!  It actually would have been longer except for the fact that the people in the boats kept yelling at me to get off the buoys.  Apparently, that's not what they're for.  They put the buoys there to mark the course not to cling to for dear life.  I've never been happier to see astro turf!  I dried my feet off, put my shoes, helmet, and sunglasses on, and headed out on my bike.

The bike leg went smoothly enough I guess.  I got passed too much.  I'm not sure how many times I heard "on your left", but it was too many for my liking.  I definitely need to get faster on the bike.  36 minutes to cover 10 miles leaves lots of room for improvement.

There wasn't much to transition 2.  I just switched out my helmet for my visor, racked my bike, and put on my race belt.  Off for the run.  I hadn't actually done any brick workouts, so this was the first time I had run directly after biking.  Weird.  My legs wouldn't work for about half a mile or so.  I felt like I was going in slow motion, and I'm sure I was.  Once the jello legs went away I kicked it up as much as I could, and for the first time during the race I was doing the passing.  The run was 3 miles in 25:49, which is my typical pace.  I felt like I was running slower than normal, but I guess not.

Finally the finish line.  It took me 1:19:18 to get there, and I'm fine with that.  I had no big expectations for this race.  The goal was to finish, and learn a little about how this whole triathlon thing works.  I learned I need to practice open water swimming, I need to hammer out more miles on my bike, and I need to bring shoes for the port-a-potties.

After the race I hung out with my fellow TIR teammates for a while before heading back.  I picked up a few new nicknames like "buoy-hugger" and such.  I guess I've been called worse.  Congrats to Sarah for her awesome 3rd place finish, and to Cassie who completed the whole thing with one of the worst coughs I have ever heard.  I have no idea how she did it.  Jeremy Webb and his sister, Jennifer, were also there competing.  Jeremy totally rocked the course, and came in under the one hour mark with a time of 59 minutes and some change, which put him in the ever so annoying 4th place slot.  4th place drives me crazy!

I had a rough start, but when it's all said and done, I had a great day.  Thank goodness for all the familiar faces, especially Jon and Edwin.  You guys are the best!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

8 Things About Me

Curtis tagged me for this little game, so here goes...

1.  I can juggle.  Started with scarves and worked my way up to oranges.
2.  I used to be legally blind.  Thank goodness for Lasik!
3.  My first name is Lisa, and my middle name's not Katy.
4.  I too, like Curtis, am uncomfortable running shirtless.
5.  I have attended 4 different colleges, and don't have a degree from any of them.
6.  I have Eazy E and The Bee Gees on the same iPod.
7.  I am not a natural blonde...shocker, I know.
8.  I have seen Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, and Pretty In Pink 437 times each.

Well, that's me in a nutshell.  Now I have to tag some people, so here goes: (Karen, Holden, Jon, Cassie, Sarah, Joe...get after it!)

Killer Clouds?

There was a sign on the door to the pool today that read "Pool Closed Due To Weather".  I was completely unaware that clouds posed such a threat to swimmers.  For 32 years I've been swimming on cloudy days, risking my life, and I didn't even know it!  

The lifeguard told me that the "lightning meter" had picked up some activity.  The sensor for this thing must be in Dallas or something....geez!  I think they all just wanted the day off.  Sitting in a chair holding a floatation device can be exhausting you know?

I did get in a run this morning.  Ken and I made the outer loop at the park.  It was humid and fairly uneventful, other than Ken ate a bug, which he apparently didn't like too much.  It's hard to say though...he makes the same face when offered a piece of chicken.  Only person I have ever met that doesn't like chicken.  It has something to do with having to pluck tons of them as a kid or something.

Monday, May 12, 2008

B-Ball Woes

Looking to escape the heat, humidity and snakes, I opted for an indoor run today on the track at the SHSU Kinesiology building.  It's an eighth mile track that circles above the basketball courts.  I get really bored running in circles, so luckily there was a fairly good game going on in one of the courts that kept me pretty entertained.  

There was also some bone-head muscled up idiot (mini mullet and a tank top with a dumbbell on it) in one of the courts that was throwing up brick after brick.  I'm serious, he was chunking the basketball like it was a shot put.  I was expecting the backboard to shatter at any moment.  It took all I had not to yell down at the guy "ease up's not how hard you throw the ball, it's all in your wrist!".  I am not kidding when I say, that in the entire 32 laps I made around that track, I did not see him make one basket.  The guy gets an A+ for persistency though.

I decided 4 miles was all could handle on this track.  I was starting to feel like a hamster, and suppressing my inner basketball coach was taking a toll on me.  It was time to go swim.  

On my way to the pool I had to pass the door to the basketball courts, and I couldn't resist going in.  There was a ball up against the wall, so I picked it up and sunk a 3 point baseline shot for the muscle man.  Amazing what a little arc and follow through will do.  Muscle man didn't say anything, but I did get a "damn wanna come play with us?" from the other court.  
Unsure how I would fare playing amongst a group of 6+ foot guys with the skillz of Kobe, I declined.  I may look into when the midget pick-up games are and go back.  

Ran 4, Swam 1

Sunday, May 11, 2008


I was going to write about how I always get the shaft on Mother's Day.  No breakfast in bed, or gifts, or anything like that.  I host lunch for about 25 family members, which requires buying it, cooking it, and cleaning it up.  I usually spend the day running around like a chicken with my head cut off, and go to bed completely exhausted.  So, I was going to complain about this, but I changed my mind.

I spent the day cooking and washing dishes with my mom and my daughter keeping me company.  I am lucky.  Cereal's hard to eat in bed anyway.


Once the dishes were done and the in-laws were gone, I ran 3 miles on trails at the house.   Happy Mother's Day to everyone! 

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Won Some Wood

I hit the snooze button 3 times this morning. Something I don't normally do, but I am sure that if I had not taken a few extra minutes of pillow time my head would have spontaneously combusted.  I'm guessing it had something to do with the previous night's events.  Matt's band, Pledge Defiance, had a gig last night, so we were out late, and I'm not sure, but I think someone may have slipped some rum into my diet 7up.  I'm totally innocent.

After downing two advils, a granola bar, and a sugar-free red bull, I headed south for the YMCA Trail Run 5K.  The race was much larger than I had anticipated.  People and cars everywhere.  I figured with the number of people in the race,  and me in my current condition, I had no chance at placing.  However, I am happy to report that for the first time in my racing history, I placed in my age group without it being by default.  I came in 2nd with a time of 26:31, a trail 5K PR for me.  For my efforts I won a lovely chunk of wood with some engraving on it.  With a little sanding, stain, and polyurethane, I'm sure it will make a nice wall-piece.

Lots of 7 Hillers made it down this morning - Ken, Marilynn & Ben Johnson, Hans Jaeger, John Cook, Sara Lange (by best racin' buddy!), Jan Parks, and Jon Walk (not running this morning.  he was there supporting).  Had a fun time.  Nice course and well organized race.  I will definitely run it again next year, even though I hate 5K's!

Just one last tidbit and I'll let you go.  About mid-way through the race I got passed by a hunched over, little old man that could hobble like the dickens.  Darnedest thing I've ever seen.  Hans saw him too, so it wasn't just my hang-over playing tricks on me.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

What Can Brown Do For You?

Um..apparently not get me a Garmin!  Tired of waiting on my darned UPS man to bring me my new 405, I bought one at Luke's today while I was in The Woodlands.  I don't really blame my UPS man - Donnie's the best!  

I'm holed up in my room now watching the Astros, and trying to figure out how to use it.  Lots of instructions - I may be here a while.

I also bought Chelsea Handler's new book, Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea.  If I ever finish reading this instruction manual I'm going to read it.  She makes me laugh - lots!

No running today.  I biked for an hour.  I don't know how far I went because I forgot to clip my cyclocomputer to my bike.  I also forgot the water again.  I think they got the bleach a little too close to my scalp today.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Snakes, snakes and more snakes

I hadn't seen a single snake so far this year - that is until today.  They were everywhere!  I couldn't even get across the creek behind the house to run my favorite trail.  There was a snake coiled up on the only spot where I can jump across.  I reached down to pick up a stick to throw at it, so it would move, and realized it was not a stick I was about to pick up, but another snake.  

A little startled from almost picking up a snake, I jumped back a little, and almost stepped on yet another snake.  What the heck?  I was surrounded!  I decided to re-route my run and take a different trail, but I still encountered two more snakes.  Needless to say, it was a very nervous 8 mile run for me today.  Every stick started looking like a snake.  I did lots of hopping around.  Glad no one was watching.

Headed to The Woodlands tomorrow to get my hair did, a little retail therapy, and lunch with an old high school friend/sometimes boyfriend who is just moving here from Dallas.  Should be interesting.  Is it wrong that I hope he's ugly now?

Sunday, May 4, 2008

6.2 With Rick

Went down to The Woodlands this morning for a 10K.  Nope, not a race.  Fellow 7 Hiller Rick Cook had planned a 100K training run in preparation for the Western States 100 that he is running in June.  His run consisted of 10 10K out-and-backs, and various people were running with him to help break up the monotony.  

My plan was to run the first 6 a.m. leg, so that I would be back in time for church, and then go back for one or two legs at the end of the run.  Rick and his friend John (a fellow ultra-runner who was planning on doing the whole 100K with Rick), along with Karen, Holden and myself headed out right at 6.  

What a great way to start out a Sunday!  Watching the sun come up on beautiful cool morning, while running 6.2 miles at a very comfortable 10 min per mile pace with great company.  I'm not sure that can be topped.  Well, maybe one way, but I won't get into that on here.  

I was just about to head back down to TW when I got a call from Karen that Rick and John had decided to call it quits 43 miles into the run.  No more trips to The Woodlands for me today.  Probably a good thing 'cause JP was being an a** about it anyway.

Congrats to Rick for a great 43 mile run!  A 62 mile run on those concrete trails in The Woodlands is unfathomable to this Huntsville Sate Park runner!  My feet hurt just thinking about it!  Best of luck at Western States!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

...and I'm spent.

Long night
Long ride
Long run
Long day

All of the above much longer than this post.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Pimped My Ride

Today I added a little thang-a-ma-jiggy called a cyclocomputer to my bike.  Once I figured out what these rpm's were you people were talking about (Joe), I decided I better get one of these devices.  After reading the instructions about 112 times, I think I know how to use it.  I didn't ride today though.  I'm going to try it out tomorrow.  Apparently I'm supposed to stay at 90 rpm's or better?  I may have to eat my words...we'll see.

Went back to the pool yesterday and today, and taking Cassie's advice, I just took it slow and easy.  I am already feeling sooo much better about the swimming.  I swam 500 yds today without stopping, going slow and easy.  Cassie was right! (not that I doubted her)  I think I was trying to swim too fast that first day.  I'll work on speed in time.  I've got to be able to finish first.  I thought I was doing really good swimming 500 yds until I read Sarah does that just for a warm-up.  ha-ha.  I'll get there eventually.  I've got lots of determination!

When I got home I ran 3 miles on trails here at the house.  And, I'm happy to let Edwin know, I am showing my kids a restaurant tonight.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Outer Just Got Longer

                     hannah's b-day

Ran the outer loop today with Ken, and they re-routed part of the trail.  It felt really weird - loose dirt and slanted.  I'm all for change, but I don't like this new trail.  

I'm about to go back to the pool and give it another try.  My arms and shoulders are still sore from my first attempt.  

I'll tell you what's not sore, and that's my legs from my bike ride yesterday.  No offensive to any of you hard core cyclists out there, but I don't feel like biking does anything.  Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy it, but I think I could ride my bike from here to Saskatchewan and I wouldn't feel a thing (if I had water).  When I find a feeder road that goes to Saskatchewan I'll let you know.  Who knows, maybe I'm not doing it right.