8/9/18

AJ Bell London Triathlon 2018

cert20x30-SUNA5158The AJ Bell London Triathlon (21 years strong) is the worlds largest triathlon with over 11,000 participants. Overall, if I consider the race day as a whole, they didn’t do a bad job. On the other hand, when you have raced with awesome RD’s and venues…the London Tri left some things to be desired.

1. If you have such a large social media presence with a “worlds largest” in your name then when people ask questions – ANSWER THEM! Dedicate someone to respond to questions posted on your site or update the freakin’ FAQ’s on a regular. NOBODY EVER responded to one damn question asked by anybody. You had to rely on word of mouth answers from previous race athletes

2. Athlete Guide. Just burn the damn thing on the trash heap of misinformation/no-information.
* Expo – Who knows? Hours? – Whenever? Just make sure you are in the building 90 min before race time.
* Transition opens? – Just be there 90 min before race time.
* Transition closes? – who knows. It didn’t. People arrived whenever and joined a group when they were ready.
* Could you pick up your race packet the day before the race? – Who knows. Didn’t say. Just recommended you be there 90 min before your wave. Due to recon, we found out that we could pick up packet before 6pm day before.
* Cutoffs? Naw, maybe, we will let you know. They “reserve the right to ask any participant to curtail any leg of the event at their discretion to ensure competitor safety….Specifically – all morning competitors must have passed the Leamouth Roundabout on second lap of bike leg by 11:40”

3. Things I had to just “get my mind right” about:
* Show up, rack and race

* A transition area the size of a football field

* You have to take off your wetsuit BEFORE you enter building, stuff in a bag while also trying to get to transition, climb 2 flights of stairs and dump at your bike.
* Where DA HELL are the restrooms/portapotties?

* Ride LEFT, Pass RIGHT (Remember to say “On Your Right”)

So, with all that said, lets get to it…

2018-08-05 10.47.42

               TODAY IS CHALLENGE DAY!

I love this picture my mother took of us walking to the transition area inside the the ExCel Center. We look fierce and ready to do battle. Time to get it done!

2018-08-05 06.24.01 2018-08-05 06.17.01

When they opened the doors to the show floor it was like a line at an amusement park to get into transition and then you racked by race start/race as you arrived. 1st come first serve.

We set up our gear and then 20 min before your wave started you lined up in the chute and they gave you a swim cap right there. Okay.

2018-08-05 13.17.00

One min we were in the corral, then next we are on the dock and they are yelling for you to get in the water. It was a mass start. The horn goes off and ….

SWIM (1500m – actual 1973yds): 42min 2:08/100m
orig-SWIB0841Uneventful…EXCEPT we were swimming directly into the sun so sighting on the red pigs was damn near impossible. I took some time to front stroke while I got my bearings and found something bigger (bridge tower) that was in line with the Pig Buoy that was the first turn. I sighted as best I could on the bridge tower and made the turn. Lot of people doing breast stroke making it very hard to pass without getting kicked. Ugggaaahh. The water was calm and not as gross as I had predicted. I felt great and was pleased with my pace and time. Stripped my wetsuit, shoved it in the bag and then was directed up two flights of stairs into transition. I was not prepared for those stairs so I had long transition time so I could "safely” get up the stairs and walk on the concrete floor to transition without busting my ass…that would come much later on the run.

BIKE 80K/49.7miles 3:35/avg 14mph:

This bike course kicked my ASS. 3 laps of pure DISRESPECT. Unless the Brits have a different definition of flat & fast, there was NOTHING flat about it. NOT A DAMN THING. The first loop I was avg about 15mph despite the fact that there were very narrow curve sections where people whizzed past without saying a damn work and so close that if you were fast enough you could snatch their bottles. Nobody said “on your right”. This course and the people on it require you to have your bike handling skills sharp or you would bite it…like into a curb or jersey wall. The climbing up and out of tunnels and up and over highway ramps was just RE-DAMN-DICULOUS. By lap 3, I was OVER IT. My last 5 miles – slow as frozen molasses. I was so thrilled to be heading to transition until I saw the ramp we had to go up. It was so steep that people were unclipping, standing – anything, just to get up. Ugggaaahhh!!!!

      orig-SUNF4241     orig-SUNE2887

Side Note: People certainly are NOT used to people talking and/or encouraging each other. I don’t know how many people I scared or shocked when I said something. I nearly caused a crash when I screamed – “GO GET IT, CRYSTAL” – across the highway as I was going out on a loop and Crystal was coming back. They wasn’t ready for Wakandians.

RUN 5 miles 1:19 (pathetic zone):

orig-SUND9322It was hot as hades. CENTER OF THE SUN HOT by this time. I actually thought I was moving faster than the time says I was, but I guess stopping EVERY SINGLE TIME to drench myself with water – SLOOOWWW. The course was 4 laps which didn’t make sense to me after my first two laps…it was apparent that each lap was more than 2 miles and by time I finished the 4th lap I would be at about 7 miles. Whatever…just get it done. The course was a 4 lap obstacle course of uneven mats, poorly marked broken/uneven concrete and indoor slippery running past the GOSH DANG FINISH CHUTE 3 – THREE – FUGGING TIMES. For the love of all that is HOLY. And then it happened, on lap two, I tripped on a uneven part of the path and fell so hard that I knocked the wind out of myself. My visor and sunglasses went flying. This nice man snatched me up off the ground, gave me his water and each time he saw me on the course, he checked in. Bless him. I dusted myself off and plodded along. As I came into the hall to do my last lap, I saw Shaunna Payne Gold standing near the split for more loops or the finish talking to two ladies. I come around and they say “sorry, the Elites have started so you can’t go out.” STRAIGHT BULLSHIGGITY THAT WAS NO WHERE IN THE ATHLETES GUIDE. I suppose they didn’t want a couple of back of the pack Athena's out on the course fugging with them filming the elite race. GTFOOHWTBS. Shaunna and I stood there for a minute and then since we had no choice, I applied lipstick and we ran in together.

I adapted, improvised and overcame all the obstacles put before me. It wasn’t my best race overall, it wasn’t my worst either. I handled all the unfamiliar with a perspective of live, love and learn.  I had a wonderful time.

6/9/18

The 38th Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon

photo_cover I ESCAPED!!!

I am still in awe that I did it. I overcame every fear and doubt I had about my abilities and ESCAPED!! When I won the entry at Nations in 2017, I knew that this would be WAAAYYY out of my comfort zone (FLAT EVERYTHING), but with my great coach,focus, dedication and a positive mental attitude, I could – I WOULD – FINISH this race.

So, how did I get here? Last year was a very challenging and busy year. I decided at the end of 2016 to do IMMD and then 2017 came and hit me with a whirlwind. I had a major job change, we ended up having to move out and into a new house on short notice and training suffered. I made the command decision to pull out of doing IMMD. Hmmmm. What to do with the rest of the season and my training. I filled it in with a few races and then at the last minute I decided to do Nations Tri in DC. It was my first triathlon ever (7years prior) and for grins and giggles, I registered. Let’s see how I improved over the years.

I cut off 47 – FORTY SEVEN MINUTES – off my race time and came in 1st in my Division. 10 min off the swim and 37 min faster off the bike – run was essentially the same. WHO KNEW?!! Still, I didn’t even realize this until days later when I decided to look at the results. I didn’t even stay for the awards ceremony cause these Athena Maters (seasoned plum ladies) are fast a muthafugger. Yet when I looked at the results there was a 1 under DIVISON. Say what?

And email came – YOU ARE GOING TO ALCATRAZ!!

COLD ASS WATER for the swim, the HILLY streets of SAN FRANCISCO for the bike, HILLY climbs and sand stairs for the run. Jesus be some BioFreeze.

IMG_4147

       IMG_4144    IMG_4148

Race morning came fast. Transition opened at 4am and you had to be on the buses to the Pier by 6am. Everyone had to be on The San Francisco Belle NLT 6:30 as the ferry left promptly. If you missed it, you did not race. I made friends with a bunch of great ladies racked near me and #2034 Melanie Detloff from New Orleans took me under her wing, kept me with her for the ferry ride and we jumped together. Having a buddy made that hour before the jump go by without getting in my head.

7:30am Time to Jump

Swim   46:02 (1.5mi)  1:45/100 yds

In about 7 min, they put 2000+ athletes in the water. There was no time to think, dwell, get in your feels or hesitate. You move like sheep towards one of two doors and step off and go. One minute I’m moving forward and then the next, I’m in the water and swimming FOR MY LIFE!!!

swimEQUIPMENT: Wax ear plugs, Neoprene headband, 2 swim caps, wetsuit, neoprene sleeves, neoprene booties.

The water was 54.7 degrees but to be perfectly honest, it didn’t even register that it was that cold. I thought, oh yeah, it’s a little cool, but byotch YOU BETTA SWIM!! For me. it was a literal fight – fight the current (swift and fast), fight to stay on course, fight to breath against swells and white caps (the wind picked up significantly by time all of us were in the water). Fight and yet, stay calm.

I got to what was about a little more than a football field away from the exit and I knew I was off course. I was swimming with everything I had…EVERYTHING…and going nowhere, I was getting no closer and I was drifting further away down the beach. I was gonna miss the landing if I couldn’t swim against this current.
A Jet Ski!!

Him: How you feeling? Whipped huh?

Me: Yeah, it doesn’t seem like I’m making progress and I can see the exit.

Him: You ain’t gonna make it. You are gonna end up about 2 miles down the beach. I need to reposition you.

If you are told you need to be repositioned, you don’t have any choice. You HAVE to do it or get DQ. You do NOT argue or debate the water safety people. Now, if you are repositioned or ask for help, you are no longer eligible for age group awards. BWAAAAHAAAHAAAHAAA!!! Yeah, not my main concern, bro.

I had to pull myself up on a board on the back of the jet ski and he dragged me back way left of the exit. Him: Now get off and SWIM! Keep LEFT of the dome. LEFT OF THE DOME. GO!

I slid off and SWAM as if JAWS was on my ass. I MADE I IT. LAND. SWEET BABY JESUS and ALL THE SAINTS. LAND!!! I made it. I was FUGGING OUT OF THE GOT DAMN WATER!!!!

    214_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_009030-17034034    
This was the hardest part of the race for me. I did it. It may be uphill on the bike and run, but as far as I was concerned, the race was downhill from here. I was skinnin’ and grinnin’ for the rest of the race. By hook or crook, I WAS GONNA FINISH!!

swimexitrunThere is a half mile run from swim exit to T1. You can leave a swim exit bag (mine had a pair of shoes, gloves, hand towel and water in it). The crew was awesome. I was asked my number and he screamed it out. I heard someone yell over here and I was directed to the row it was in. They were really not there to strip your wet suit, but the volunteer snatched me out of it. I stood on my towel, yanked my shoes on (slip on kicks), threw my stuff in the bag and was off to T1.

T1: 14:23 Don’t even step to me about transition times. It was a long run to warm up after the swim and YES, I took my damn time to get my shit together for the EPIC climbing I was about to do on the bike. I gobbled an egg and an applesauce, threw on my hydration pack and was off.

finisherpix_2358_010572

Bike    1:50:54 (18mi)  9.7/mph

bikeclimb

Time to climb! My bike time was 7 min slower than when I did the course on the computrainer. Why? Cause on the computrainer you can go as fast as you can pedal on the downhill without riding your brakes, going off a cliff or crashing into some life sucking shit. I’m glad I at least practiced the course because for the love of all that is Holy, the climbs are LONG and STEEP and I knew that it was going to be a long grind. Just keep peddling – up and over. The descents were equally as long and steep AND FAST as hell. I saw 30+mph speeds and was screaming and riding my brakes on each one. I’m just not THAT fearless to just let go and let God. I knew He had me, but yeah, I wanted to arrive alive.

222_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_012551-17034042

            224_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_026475-17034044   227_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_026478-17034047

I thought for sure that I would be able to get back without unclipping, but I (and the pack I was with) didn’t foresee the double climb. On the 1st long climb back to the finish (climbing after leaving Golden State Park, left turn up 100m and then hard right up short and STEEP), I hit that right turn, standing in the saddle and STILL couldn’t move the pedal. CLICK CLICK. I was off the bike with about 6 others and we walked and commiserated together. Two more long climbs and we were home free. Me and another lady played leapfrog up and down the last two climbs and kept encouraging each other to keep peddling, keep moving, almost to the top. I was ahead on the very last part of the climb towards near the bridge and I turned around to look for her and yelled. LET’S GO! COME ON! WE ARE ALMOST THERE!!

We were and we brought it in.

bikefinish

T2 8:35 I DON’T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT. Worry ‘bout your damn self.

I was grinning like a Cheshire Cat! 8 MORE MILES and I WAS GONNA BE AN ESCAPEE!!! Just 8 MORE MILES! I can do anything for those 8 miles.elevationgraph2015

Run    2:23:54 (8.35mi)  17:14/mile

They say the race is won on the run. Since I wasn’t in it to win it – I didn’t give a fugg. Just wogg, shuffle and hump up and over the hills and GET IT DONE!!

The first 2 miles were flat out of Marina Green but into a headwind. The view of the bridge was spectacular. At mile 2 you had to climb stairs to the top of the park overlooking the bridge. You continue climbing for another mile. I was sticking to my 1:30/:30 intervals. I felt good. I was wogging happy. I made it to the top and then it was a steep descent onto the beach. I wish I could take a downhill like the other runners, but my knees can’t take it. I probably looked like a Weeble (they wobble but they don’t fall down) as I turned my feet out, extended my stride and shuffle/hopped side to side down the hill to the beach.

SAND. FUGG MY LIFE! There is NO POINT is trying run on loose sand. And then I approached the Sand Ladder…Put there by SATAN HIMSELF…sandstairs

Sand Ladder   8:55

400 wooden pile-on steps. Whose fugging idea was this shiggity right damn here! I looked up and told myself to not look up again until I got up there. Hunker down and climb and pull yourself up and along the best you can. 9 min later I was up at the top. A little more of a climb and then it was downhill to the finish.

I got to the top and texted Ron that was coming home. 3 miles left! I was filled with JOY!
(I ‘ont wanna hear your shit about my phone either. I didn’t have head phones and it was in my hydration pack so stuff it)

at the top

I laughed my way back. Seemed like the longest 3 miles EVER but I knew it was almost over.

finisherpix_2358_048340Ron was there waiting for me to bring it home! I was exhilarated. ESTATIC! I was going to finish! I was gonna ESCAPE!!

235_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_038429-17034055  236_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_038430-17034056 237_3rd-2397386-DIGITAL_HIGHRES-2358_038431-17034057

I ESCAPED FROM ALCATRAZ!

          finisherpix_2358_038438   FINISH_MEDAL

I am so THANKFUL and BLESSED! The list of people that helped, supported, encouraged and coached me to achieving this goal is long. Know that I appreciate and love each and every single one of you.

And just so you know that I don’t have the big head…

I managed to swim across the San Francisco Bay, climb up and down hills on the streets of San Francisco, survive the sand ladder without injury or a mark on me. I climb the stairs in my own house, trip over the bar to the grandbaby gate almost going head first down the back stairs and hurt myself more, losing skin off my knee and knocking the wind out of me. That shit RIGHT THERE hurt more than ESCAPING FROM ALCATRAZ!!! The dangers of your own home will keep you humble. LOL!

Seriously???!!!! OUCH! That hurt.

5/30/18

Race Report–IGNITE SwimRun Maryland–MAY 12th

logoWHOSE BRIGHT IDEA WAS THIS!! – Oh, yeah, that would be me.

DISCLAIMER: If you are easily offended and don’t like curse words. STOP HERE. If not, carry on…

So…In keeping with the tradition of suckering your friends into doing crazy shit…like Rebecca did 6 years ago with the “LIIIIIIIISSSSAAAA! Do this triathlon with me; your in shape, you can do it, it will be fun." I called up Rebecca and exclaimed – “HEY, Coach Danny is running this new IGNITE SwimRun Series and well, how hard could it be. Do it with me! We’d make a great team!”

SUCKER! She said sure! Let’s do it. Well, that went kinda easy. Maybe it will be a piece of cake. BWAAAAHAAAHAAHAAHAA!

What is SwimRun? IGNITE SwimRun is an endurance race that combines the thrill of endurance racing with the beauty of nature. 

Participants compete as a two-person team. Not a relay. Teams consist of all men, all women and mixed gender. The race begins with a mass wave start. Teams complete numerous swim and run legs ending at the finish line. During the race, teammates must remain within 10 meters of each other at all times. Teammates must complete the entire course and cross the finish line together. Everything we started with, we had to finish with and carry with us. This means we had to swim in our sneakers and carry a first aid kit, tether, GPS, and run with wetsuit, goggles, swim cap, buoy, whistle, etc.

Gear
           2018-05-12 07.14.12
Pure cray-cray.

I signed us up for the Long Course, but during a pre-race discussion with my teammate we concluded that we were NOT prepared to swim a total of 2.4 miles AND run 14+. Yeah, no. We went down to the Short Course.

Swim - 4 legs: 1.4 mi
Run - 5 legs: 7.8 mi (it was supposed to be 6.2 miles. Course adjustment. SURPRISE!)
Total distance: 9.2

The swim was the same 500-600 (depending on how straight a line you can swim) across the lake. The Run was 5 legs of various distance…THROUGH THE WOODS!. How do you know to stay on course. Each time you get out of the water you run by an aid station and pick up a colored rubberband for the next leg you are on. DON’T FOLLOW the tree markings, FOLLOW the corresponding colored IGNITE signs.

Everybody

And we are off…
Run 1:  Red - 0.9 miles 
We didn’t get off to a great start. Both Rebecca and I took off and our buoys slid down our legs. Rebecca stopped to take hers off and I stopped to tighten mine up.  {We needed a swim buoy because we had to swim in our sneakers, which would pull our legs down while swimming. The swim buoy helped to keep our feet up while swimming). We were also on uneven grass for the start. We got dropped immediately by EVERYONE except 2 teams. WHATEVER. Let’s get it done. The swim came upon us quickly…

TIP: DIY on your buoy with the small one we all swim at pool with. Drill some holes and use locklaces to tighten up. Ours was bulky and heavy and well…cursing started early.


Swim 1: 0.35 miles:
I was so glad to get to the first swim. We took a min so Rebecca could put on her buoy and I clipped us together with the tether. The plan was for me to lead the swims with Rebecca on my right hand side. I kept feeling the tether pull tight and I would slow or pause – FUGG – It took me to the last swim leg to figure out how to come to a complete stop and tread water with shoes, a wetsuit and a gynormous buoy between my legs. I was thinking…FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY! WHAT DA HELL IS THE PROBLEM BACK THERE! I “stop” and ask Rebecca what’s up? Are you okay. She said she couldn’t keep the buoy between her legs, it kept sliding down around her ankle. I popped off: GIRL, JUST KEEP YOUR LEGS CLOSED!

We started swimming again and I thought, oops, that’s my teammate. We gonna be out here together for a while. I shrugged. My girl knows I’m sassy and curse. She be alright. I started dragging her instead and said nothing.

We finished the first swim and as we approached the aid station we saw our coach and IGNITE race director, Danny standing there. He asked how it was. Rebecca responded, "THAT WAS HARD AS FUCK!". I was like FUCK MY LIFE, HOW MANY MORE? He just laughed and said at some point we will be saying it was fun as fuck. Yeah, that moment didn't come throughout that race.

This picture of us getting out of the water after the first swim speaks a thousand words. I am looking at Rebecca like, "What DA HELL ARE you DOING??!!! Next leg, keep your legs closed on that buoy. LET’S GO!

CloseYourLegs

Run 2:  Green - Almost 2 miles. 
Hmmm…this is steep. This is not a run. This is a hike. I’m not a trail runner and these trails were steep, very rocky and technical. I was kinda cheery on this loop. I was envisioning climbing hills at Alcatraz. I couldn’t run this trail but I could hump up it and I didn’t feel too bad. Rebecca was no in the same happy place as I was on this loop. I coaxed her up with telling her to just take 10 steps and rest, then 10 more. Soon we would be up an over. We made it down to the water again.

Swim 2: 0.35 miles
Uneventful. Just a swim across the lake. Nothing to report.

Run 3: Blue  - Closer to 1.5 miles
We were getting a little tired now. Another short but steep climb up and over. Rebecca started talking about how she felt totally unfit and telling me how her mother told her that her legs were getting big and added how she though her arms and belly were too. She said she hated it all, and blamed herself because she hadn't done a pushup or situp in months..... In the words of M’baku – I WAS NOT HAVING IT. I nipped that shit in the bud telling her that I refuse to hate anything about my body anymore. God gave me this body and it is my job to do everything I can to make it the best that I can. I told her to love her body, because God gave it to her. Just take the time to appreciate and be thankful for what she can do in the body she has and if she wants it to be better, do better. We had a little praise and worship up on the mountain and before we knew it, we are back in the water.

Swim 3: 0.35 miles
Now it was my turn to have issues. My swim buoy was sliding down and YES! I WAS CRUSHING THAT DAMN BUOY between my legs. It would loosen up, slide down some and twist around. I kept stopping to try and fix it and looked like I was drowning as I thrashed the water to get upright. Rebecca tried to tell me to just stay horizontal but for some reason I couldn’t get the hang of it until near the end and I came out of the water EXHAUSTED.

Run 4: Orange - about 4 miles - elevation was almost 9% grade
We were told by a team THAT FUGGING LAPPED us that the orange course to very challenging and technical. Be careful. This is probably the beginning of the “FUCK EVERYONE” fest that Rebecca and I went on. We descended into the sunken place. We thanked them for the info and trudged along. When we approached the first climb, I came to a halt and said “This rocky trail, mountain goat bullshit is some definite #wyppo shit RIGHT HERE!  What THE HELL were we doing out here in these woods?!! As we kept climbing and climbing AND CLIMBING over rocks and boulders and roots and just woods shit…I WAS OVER IT and kept asking, WHEN WILL THIS CLIMB END THIS ENNNNDDDDDD?!!???. And Rebecca managed to find her cheer and quip, "I don't know girl, let's go find out. BITCH WHAT??!! Mmmm hmmm. We gon find out alright and when I catch up to your happy ass…you’ll see.

I knew I needed her cheer and happy thoughs because I was DONE. OVER IT. Rebecca reminded me about all we have done before - finished 100 mile bike rides, marathons, 70.3 races and Ironman competitions,  jumped off boats and swam to shore then hopped on our bikes followed by a run. We were BADASSES. DAMN RIGHT. This is why you need to have a TEAMMATE for those ebbs and flows. Neither of you can be negative at the same time. You have to know each other and how to support the other when things go dark.

We came up on an aide station. They told us that we just have 2 more miles to "run", then swim again and then it's just a 0.5 mile run to the finish line. There was beer and Chik-Fil-A at the finish. I CAN DO ALL THINGS FOR A COLD ASS BEER. Yet just as we were about to move out with a purpose, this muthafugger can RUNNING past on the trail. We asked were his gear was and he said he was FINISHED and just wanted to get some more miles in.

This is when the melt down occurred. NO one was saved! Rebecca threw out her cup and cussed me out:  "You know what? Fuck you, Lisa. This shit was all your idea! Lisa chuckled and said, "come on girl, let's finish this race.

It looked like we didn’t have anymore to climb, but oh, WE DID. BOY DID WE HAVE ONE LAST CLIMB and that was when the FUCK FEST began and what could have been a pitty party turned out to be pretty damn funny. We cursed and laughed our way to the last swim… (copied from Rebecca’s race report)

  • "Yeah, fuck Danny and his lil' friends that planned this fucking course. Yeah, girl, Fuck Danny!.....{Haaaaa! We were OVER IT and the word FUCK just some how made us feel better. We even used the F word when we saw some people out in the woods. They just laughed at us. We weren't angry, for those that don't understand. It was just a way to get through it. Rebecca and I can cuss each other out one second and be 10000% okay the next second. Not angry at all. It's a survival technique. Fuck is a stress relieving word in difficult situations. You should try it! lol}
  • ME: who the fuck put all these fucking rocks out here?! Rebecca: Mother Nature. ME: Yeah, Fuck that bitch too!". :
  • Fuck all these mofo’s out here running on the rocks with vibrams…RUNNING!
  • When we get back to the athlete tent, we gonna walk in there and say – FUCK ALL OF YOU!
  • FUCK All the people back at home tracking us and wondering what was taking us so long. "Yeah, fuck them. They need to get off the couch and come out here and see how HARD this shit is"
  • FUCK all the people that already finished. They better had not eaten up all the Chick-fil-A and drank up all the beer. They know Danny and them ordered that chicken for us!!!
  • FUCK all the people who will think that instead of using the vulgarity in our race reports we should "use our words". Fuck them. FUCK is the only appropriate word to describe our thoughts and feelings during this difficult time. The shit was tough, bruh!

We made it to the last swim. THANK YOU SWEET BABY JESUS. And suddenly I had my game face on. I could see across the lake to the finish. In my mind, I could taste those chicken tenders washed down by a cold beer. I stood at the waters edge waiting for Rebecca to get her buoy on with the tether in my hand to clip her in. I WAS ON A MISSION. I didn’t say a word, I just started swimming. HARD. FAST.

I felt the tether tighten and I didn’t care. I just kept swimming. Pulling harder. I literally was thinking that I will just pull Rebecca to the finish, just hang on. All of a sudden a kayak pulled up beside me and he tagged me with his paddle. I was like – WHAT!!!??? He said I had to stop and let my teammate get herself together. Rebecca was trying to adjust her buoy and I was dragging her along. Damn. I tried to drown my teammate. FUCK. I stopped. She got it together and I said we are almost there, just hold on.

WE MADE IT!

SwimOut

I crawled up on the sand and thanked GOD. We made it. Just .5 more to go to the finish chute. I was huffing and puffing, slight incline up to the last bit to the finish. I looked at Rebecca and said, when we get to the cone at the top, let’s run it in TOGETHER!

The Ignite SwimRun Series motto is to IGNITE YOUR INNER ATHLETE and we most certainly did. Would I do it again? At first, I said HELL TO THE NAW! but I had a blast. It was definitely HARD AS FUGG, but I had a great time.

Here is a link to check out the Ignite SwimRun Series. There is still time to get one in this year.

2018-05-12 12.37.59

12/29/17

A Race Year In Review

2017 has been a year of big events and changes that required a change in plans & goals along with some awesome celebrations along the way. I haven’t had much time to blog and didn’t do my usual race reports. I decided to do a year in review instead to celebrate an awesome 2017 as I prepare for a FABULOUS 2018!

APRIL 9TH – Clydes 10k – 1:30:35 (14:28min/mile)
2017-04-09 13.08.15
Coming off of a shot in each knee and a recommendation that I learn to power walk if I want to keep at it and I had a goal of doing IMMD.

The brace helped and I felt like I crushed it even with that disrespectful hill coming up Rt 108.













6 MAY – NEW JOB

21 MAY – Columbia Triathlon (Redemption)
Swim 47:56   Bike 2:20:58   Run 1:39:09
15 min overall improvement (5 Bike, 10 on Run)
        SWIM (2) BIKE
            Finish2 (2)  2017-05-21 12.07.14-2
You can practically feel the joy and exhilaration I felt at the completion of this race. Columbia Tri is a BEAST and has been my nemesis for ever. 2015 – Bronchitis and I raced anyway having to pull out of the run. 2016 – DNF having to pull out of the water, too damn cold, panicked and ended up in med tent for 30 min for high BP. YES I CAN!!

MAY 29th – JUNE 6th –
30th WEDDING ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION – LONDON & PARIS
   2017-05-30 12.20.29 - Copy   2017-05-31 16.41.33
2017-06-01 17.46.24
2017-06-02 16.35.58 2017-06-04 15.17.44
2017-06-05 16.44.27
I had the most wonderful time celebrating 30 years together. Here is looking for 30 more. I wouldn’t have it any other way!














9-10 JUNE – Moved into New Home
This was the same weekend I had to make the command decision on moving forward with IMMD. All move, the travel and the new job travel requirements made it so I could not train like I needed to do if I wanted to be successful. Looking back at it now, I made the best decision for me and my family.
2017-06-18 08.06.0918 JUNE –Ellicott City 10k- 1:34:08 (15.16min/mile) – coming off of a decadent trip to London & Paris with the most training being lots of walking and a bike tour followed by the move, I was impressed with my wog! Especially, having to do that two mile climb. THAT WAS RUDE!
2017-06-17 19.04.16

15 – 16 JULY – DU THE 2 – Maryland Duathlon Challenge
        2017-07-15 09.59.37  2017-07-16 11.21.17
                    2017-07-16 12.09.11
Let’s just say that after 2 years of this back to back race…yeah. Imma stick to the OLY and call it a day. I seem to not be able to get my nutrition right, it is always hot as a mofo and running is my Achilles heel. My Sprint time pretty much the same from previous year and the Oly was the same except add 10 min onto the run time. I was so glad to cross that finish line. 2018…Just the OLY.

26 AUGUST – West Point Sprint Triathlon
Swim 21:49   Bike  1:04   Run 46:40 –
3rd PLACE ATHENA
IMG_6516IMG_6522
142291-036-021h (2)       2017-08-20 12.06.16
Took the podium again with a 3rd place Athena! YES!!

26 – 27 AUGUST – CHICAGO TRI
(SuperSprint & OLY)
2017-08-26 12.19.28
IMG_15038364558702017-08-28 12.32.26-2
Back to Back races and I didn’t drown, crash or fall. WINNING!! I followed it up with a vacation with my GlamBaby (and her parents too). Another fabulous racecation.

10 SEPTEMBER – Nations Triathlon 1ST ATHENA MASTERS
2017-09-11 09.03.13I decided to do this race at the last minute for grins and giggles since I wasn’t going to be doing IMMD. It is the first triathlon I ever did back in 2010 and I wanted to see how I have progressed over the years.
I cut off 47 – FORTY SEVEN MINUTES – off my race time and came in 1st in my Division. 10 min off the swim and 37 min faster off the bike – run was essentially the same. WOW!!!
I won an entry to ESCAPE FROM ALCATRAZ in 2018. Guess what the A race is for 2018!!






28 SEPT-1OCT 30th WEST POINT CLASS REUNION
       2017-09-29 15.52.33-1  2017-09-30 11.14.37

5 NOVEMBER – Across the Bay 10k 1:32:05 Nothing to write home about, but I am not losing pace ground. One more puzzle piece to collect.
2017-11-09 12.06.54

19 NOVEMBER – Turkey Chase 10k – 1:28:54
My last race of the season and one of the best as I ran it with my son, Trooper Jordan Steptoe.
         2017-11-19 07.55.522017-11-19 09.36.43
It was a wonderful year of racing amongst a lot of celebration and life changes. You adapt, improvise and overcome as things are thrown in your path. Don’t give up on your goals and dreams. Shoot for the stars and if you land on the moon, you have a better view of the stars and are that much closer.

Wishing all of you a wonderful 2018…May all your days be Merry & Bright!