Friday, June 26, 2009

My First Triathlon Ever! Triceratops Tri at Island Lake

This week was a pretty major week for me. I had my first triathlon ever! We also would leave for our week long plus vacation to Ocean Isle. With those two things ahead, we had lots to do to prepare!

Monday was a low key day. Soren continued to work on pulling to a stand on everything.
Keira also had more fun outside with bubbles.

I did a mini brick in the evening once Ryan got home that consisted of a 6.5 mile bike followed by a 2 mile run. I did it mostly to work on my transition from biking to running. It was super hot today, so I kept thing short due to that and because I was starting my taper for the race. I also decided that I would need a bike tune up, so Ryan took my bike in to the shop for an emergency visit on his way to ride Maybury. At home, he and Soren enjoyed being silly. I have a video of this to capture the sound, but it is sideways because I always forget that I can't turn the camera on video mode.

Tuesday I did a few errands, but didn't want to do anything too strenuous so that I could rest up for my race tomorrow. I took Keira and Soren to the mall for a little bit, and then we played outside.

Soren was able to use this diaper box as a "walker" and was able to push it all over the living room. He was pretty excited about that.

Ryan went on a ride with his buddies, David and Kent, since there were no scouts tonight. He put our old tray on his truck to be able to carry three bikes, since he picked up both my bike and his mountain bike from the shop and needed to ride his road bike. I was glad to have my bike back and relieved that no one had played a joke on me about something happening to it this close to the race.

Wednesday was the big day of the Triceratops Triathlon at Island Lake State Park. I took a video of Soren crawling this morning. It is amazing how fast he progressed. At the time of this post, he has already improved dramatically.

We also had a little excitement in the yard when I found a baby bird in the yard that had fallen out of its nest. Keira was pretty interested in it, and did not want to come inside after seeing it. We were advised by an animal rescue to put it back in its nest, and our site manager was gracious enough to help out, however, the little bird did not make it much longer.
My parents came into town this afternoon as I was getting ready for the race. I was very very stressed out to say the least, and was glad that the bird issue had provided me with some sort of diversion for a good part of the afternoon while I got everything packed. As soon as Ryan got home from work, we got the truck loaded and headed over to the race site. We meet up with Linda over there, as well as my training buddies, Cristina, Valerie, and Barb, and their families. I was pretty much nervous about the whole thing, but especially the swim. It was an incredibly hot day, and the water felt comfortable. I was worried that I would freeze. I was pretty sure I could swim the distance even though I never swam that far without some sort of stop, but you don't ever run a full marathon in your training either beforehand. I was also happy to learn that I knew one of the guys who was manning a kayak out in the water who would be able to assist swimmer in trouble. That was comforting, and I was glad that I was able to complete the 1/2 mile swim distance without needing to stop and rest at a kayak (which is totally allowed as long as you don't make forward progress with it). I made it out of the water after about 27 minutes (which is pretty good considering I had only been swimming for two and a half weeks prior, but pretty bad compared to everyone else) and felt OK for the start of the bike. The bike felt great. I felt really strong during the bike portion and was actually able to pass a lot of people. I finished my 12 mile bike portion in just under 42 minutes, and then started the run. The run was super hard for me, which surprised me. It took me almost 29 minutes to do the 5K, which I thought was terrible. It was super hot, and I felt like I was doing the end of a marathon where I just wanted to be done. In fact, our truck said it was 88 degrees as we were getting home at 9pm! My total time with transitions was 1:41:56. My bike and run times were actually quite respectable in my age group, but my swim was just terrible, so it put me in second to last place (10th) in my age group. I was 193rd overall, and the 61st female. I think there were around 250 people total in the race. I felt pretty lousy after finishing, but not nearly as bad as after a marathon. I am not sure when I will do another one, but I really need to work on my swim or find a race that has a longer bike and run compared to the swim so that I can make up all the ground I lose from being a bad swimmer. Below: Cristina, Me, Valerie, and Barb. Cristina helped me to swim in open water.
Kate, Valerie, Me, and Soren. Valerie gave me the push to do this race.

Valerie, Me, and Cristina. The start was in waves by age group.
I made it through the swim!

Here I am finishing up the bike. I thought it was hysterical that there is a little girl and her mom going opposite me as if there was nothing special going on that day.
Here I am coming into the transition area.
I am starting the run. I really didn't look this happy for the duration, only because I saw Ryan taking my picture.
Here I am coming into the finish. Again, happy to be done and I saw the camera.
Going into the finish. I started 5 minutes after the clock time due to my age group start, so I was able to take 5 minutes from the clock time to get my actual time.
My dad with Keira during the race.
Me, Valerie, and Cristina, post race. Cristina won my age group
Kate, Valerie, Keira, Me, and Barb. I know Barb from church, and did some running with her to train.

It was a late night for Keira and Soren, with us not getting home until well after their bedtime. They did great, though.

On Thursday, my parents stayed around long enough for Keira to go to a library storytime while Soren napped at home. I also spent some time putting together an unit from Ikea to store Keira's toys and started laundry for pack. Soren does not get tired of playing with this balloon!

On Friday, we had to spend the day packing up and will head to my parents house for the first driving leg of our Ocean Isle Vacation! We will spend all of next week in Ocean Isle Beach, NC for some fun in the sun! Yeah!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

This week was a very fun and busy week. I worked a lot on training for my upcoming race. I always think it is funny how I start the week with few plans and still end up doing so many things! Soren also slept through the night a couple nights, but has been waking up again since. We spent a lot of time in bathing suits and we topped off the week by celebrating Father's Day.

Monday was one of those days where I really only had 1 goal, swim with Cristina at her work. It ended up being a really really fun day. Linda came over to watch Keira and Soren while I swam, and once I returned, Haley dropped by with Owen and Avery since they were unable to attend Keira's party over the weekend. Keira was very excited to open another present, and we had everyone decorate cookies inside.

Linda and I took the kids out to lunch and the mall before naptime. Then, once Ryan got home, we all headed to Maybury where I ran while Ryan biked. I have been doing most of my running with the stroller to add difficulty to it since I haven't been able to get any more training "bricks" in.

As if we hadn't yet done enough today, we also took the kids up to the complex pool. The water was FREEZING, so we didn't stay long at all, and it was getting close to bedtime.
Soren isn't too sure about what is about to happen.
It was amazing that everyone is smiling in this shot because this was probably the only second that Soren smiled the whole time he was in the pool.

Tuesday was a rather interesting day. We decided to go to the Novi Sports Park, and Keira totally didn't want to go. I knew she would want to go once we were there, so I just put her in the car anyway. When we got there, it was closed for repair! Now, she saw the playground and was bent on playing and so we went to Lakeshore Park instead. It was a bit of a drive going from one to the other, but neither is that far from our house so it was still a good time.

That evening, when Ryan got home, I had my first experience with open water swimming. It was a pretty stressful evening for everyone. I was worried almost all day about it because I knew I wouldn't be able to stop and would have to somehow make it from one side of the lake to the other, and I am not the best swimmer, but I have been practicing in the pool and my training buddies all felt that I would be fine. I am happy to say that I was able to swim across Trout Lake and back, the short direction, for about a total of a half mile. It is .2miles across, but we made a triangle, stopping at the shore in the middle on the way back, to add a bit of distance and a rest. I was super happy about my accomplishment, but the whole experience took MUCH longer than I thought it would, so Ryan was pretty stressed out about how long I had been gone and that he had scouts to get to and wasn't sure if he needed to go send out a search party or just meet me at scouts. Fortunately, the later was the case and I will now be more careful about alerting him when we start late and take a horribly long time to swim a short distance.

On Wednesday, we didn't do much. Today was a rainy and dreary day. We didn't do much outdoors. It didn't rain in the evening, but it looked like it was going to, so we didn't want to head out and get caught in it. I rode my bike on the trainer while watching TV. I did my 12 miles in record setting pace, which meant that I must have either had something set wrong on my computer or on the trainer because I am really only an average biker. Soren is getting good at bear crawling and is starting to crawl for real.
He also LOVES balloons. We seem to have issues we when don't get one for each child. Keira's birthday balloon still has a ton of air in it.
Cuteness and more cuteness

Thurday was an exciting day for Soren! He was able to pull up to a stand on our staircase today. He was pretty funny and got all excited about his accomplishment.

He was being so silly at this point, and then let go. I was really glad I caught him before his head cracked on the floor. Of course, he thought it was hysterical. He is so different from Keira, she would have been in tears.

We also went to Maybury in the evening for another ride/run session. My biking plans with everyone fell through so I ran while Ryan biked and Keira enjoyed the playground afterwards.

Soren is also becoming a fan of teething biscuits. They make the biggest mess, so we may switch him to crackers or something that he can bite and chew instead of suck and slobber on. We also picked up our new crib but didn't really do anything with it today.

On Friday, we realized that our crib did not live up to its expectations. We had thought when we ordered it that we could use it as a daybed/toddler bed without an additional kit because the salesperson at the store was unable to locate a conversion kit part. We learned today (as well as the store employees) that the reason we couldn't find a part for it in the computer was because the manufacturer had not yet developed this part and didn't have it for sale yet. This was quite frustrating, because we had wanted our replacement crib to do everything that our previous crib did so we wouldn't be out any additional money due to the recall, and we were not authorized to buy a conversion kit with our voucher, even if it had enough money to fund it. We spent some time on the phone with Babies R Us, and we felt that we needed some time to think about what we wanted to do and a manager was not there anyway, so we resumed our scheduled plans for the evening. We had another family swim outing to do. This time, Cristina invited us up to Bostford for their monthly family swim event. It was a great time. We swam in the therapy pool which is a toasty 92 degrees. Soren and Keira had a much better time today swimming, and we swam until bedtime, practically. It is a great thing that Bostford is so close to home.

We were also entertained this evening with some CRAZY lightning. Ryan ran out once the kids were in bed and drove through the storm. The lightning was so bright at times it was blinding, and it did wake up Soren in the night, or he just woke up on his own, who knows with him.

Saturday was another busy day. The weather had cleared up nicely so Ryan was able to do his ride with the wolverines. I had to make some last minute preparations for Father's day and buy some new kitchen gadgets and ingredients for the dessert I had planned.

Once Ryan got back, we set out to Babies R Us to get our crib issue resolved. It was resolved much better than we expected. We were concerned because there really weren't many cribs in the store that we liked that didn't require a toddler kit (so we thought), and were concerned we would need to order something online and didn't know how that would work with our voucher. We were pretty sure (and correct) that they wouldn't be able to just "give" us the toddler kit for free, so they had no problem with letting us return the crib. We also learned that one of the in store cribs that I really liked did not require a special kit for the daybed. I had been misinformed by another salesperson who told me I did need one, so we stopped considering it. It was also a very expensive crib, but thanks to a Buy Buy Baby coupon that I received since the initial order, it was able to bring it down within our voucher limit. I had made an attempt to find a coupon before the order, but stopped once I thought I needed another part. We lucked out and they had this crib in stock, so we took it home with us. It would have been nice if the salespeople had their facts straight initially, so we could have just ordered this crib in the first place. The funny thing is that it probably wouldn't have changed the timing much on everything, just eliminated a trip to the store. I am just glad the whole thing is done.

Once we got the crib home and unloaded, I headed back out to Trout Lake to swim with Cristina again. This time, the swim did not go as well as I had hoped. The water was much rougher, so I had trouble with getting splashed in the face while breathing on the right side, which is how I have been training. I pretty much swam across the lake doing the sidestroke to keep my face clear of waves, and then clung to the shoreline on the way back so that I could at least work on my stroke and stop as needed. I am just glad there will be kayaks in the water if I need a break during the race. I am hoping to not need them, but it makes me feel better knowing they are there.

Sunday was Father's Day. We started the day with some cute photos, and then Ryan put together the crib while I got the kitchen ready for breakfast. We enjoyed a BIG breakfast and then got to work on the dessert for the evening.
Soren is excited about his new crib. It is on the middle setting, and I think should be OK for a bit anyway.
At last, Soren is able to sleep in a beautiful crib that is SAFE. This is just naptime, though. We haven't combined them yet overnight.
Keira had to try out the crib too. Soren's cheeks are so wide when he smiles!

We headed straight over to Kris and Linda's after church, and I was able to wish my dad a happy Father's day from there on the phone.

Keira and Soren did not enjoy having their picture taken. They looked pretty funny all mad.

We had a great dinner and finished it off with my key lime bars from the Martha Stewart Cookie cookbook.

Keira also had a great time playing in the pools and water. Soren wasn't feeling it because the water was pretty cold. Keira also had a good time playing with edible finger paints made from pudding and making a picture.

It was such a busy week! This next week will be even busier. I have my first triathlon coming up, both Keira and Soren have a dr's appointment, and we leave for our Ocean Isle, NC vacation. Needless to say, there will be lots of preparing going on, but it should hopefully have pleasing outcomes.