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.


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 –
   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 –
142291-036-021h (2)       2017-08-20 12.06.16
Took the podium again with a 3rd place Athena! YES!!

(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.

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!!

       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!


Journey to IMMD: If it ain’t raining, You ain’t training…

2017-04-22 11.48.18

Saturday, I had 40 miles to knock out in Training Peaks. Earlier in the week, I scoped out a trail that I had not done before that I had heard was awesome! Paved, flat and uninterrupted – The Western Maryland Rail Trail.


I wanted something a little closer to home that I wouldn’t have to worry about cars and such. The weather was looking iffy, but the weather report said it would be cloudy on Saturday and rain on Sunday. It would suck for the Half Marathon but so be it. I packed everything up on Friday night and was ready to roll.


Mmmm Hmmm…I want that job where you can be dead ass wrong 50%+ of the time and still get paid the big bucks. I woke up early on Saturday to rain. Uggahh!!


I piddled around and wasted a hour debating what I would do. I stared at my trainer for what seemed like an eternity dreading 40 miles on the trainer. It is just like the dreadmill…hours of going nowhere, not fast – just ongoing suffering. I then tried to figure out when I could fit it in? After the half marathon? YEAH RIGHT. I’m dedicated, but I know EXACTLY what would happen – NOTHING.

Then it hit me – these conditions just might be what it will be like at IMMD. Cold, raining, windy. Before I could talk myself out of it, I grabbed my rain jacket and got in the car. Western Maryland Rail Trail is a fast hour and 10min from my door and I was there in no time. I started at the beginning of the trail at Ft. Frederick State Park (exit 12 of of I70). Less than a mile off the exit is a free parking lot (Big Pool Junction). There are restrooms to use so you can relieve yourself privately before you get started.

2017-04-22 08.53.15

The trail is BEAUTIFUL. 22 miles of almost totally uninterrupted (nolights, road crossings – except for the occasional tow path crossing and the parking lot entrances in Hancock), completely flat, paved trail. AWESOME!


At approximately mile 10/11, you come into Hancock where the C&O Bike Shop is located. There are other wonderful restaurants and ice cream shop if you are so inclined. If you drive up to Exit 3, there is another free lot right before the town center. This might be a better option if you plan on doing a double. You are at the mid point of the trail and thus you would never be that far from the Bike Shop and your car if you ran into trouble that you couldn’t fix on your own. I noticed that there were plenty of places along the route if you had to jump off for sustenance or a restroom. Plenty of nature though. The view and sights are along the way is beautiful.

2017-04-22 10.45.10

      Me – on the trail w/C&O Bike Shop in background

The first 15 miles were not bad at all. It was a light drizzle but most times it was just cloudy. At 15, the rain started to pick up so I decided to turn around before it got too bad.

2017-04-22 10.24.26

    Mile 15 – Snack break & decision to turn around


NOPE. The rain steadily pick up and was a pour for my last 10 back to the car. Amazing how you find energy and speed when you want to GET OFF THE BIKE AND OUT OF THE RAIN.


I got 30 of the planned 40 done in the rain and I survived. My goal was to maintain a 16mph pace and I did approx. 15mph (rain, cold, wind). Not bad. I’m going back next weekend and do the whole trail. Who’s coming?


NOTE TO SELF: Also throw in car a change of clothes & towel when you are planning on crazy stuff. Actually, just put a jump bag in the car and leave it there.


Journey to IMMD: It is too early for a Meltdown

At the beginning of this month…on a Sunday long run day…I had the first of probably plenty of meltdowns:


2017-04-02 11.45.42

Here I stand up against a tree at mile 5 of a 10 mile wog ~ which I WALKED ~ trying to get my head back in the game and get back to my car. (I reached out to my FB family of crazy for support)…Y'all send me some good vibes cause right now I wanna call Uber.

Imma eat my snack, stretch, do a gut check and get movin'.


I was no mo good and needed to get my ass in gear. My fellow RipItTeam Members, Friends, Family and #TeamRightBehindMe stepped up to the plate, gave me a virtual kick in the ass and I got to movin’….


I attacked 3.5 miles, which got me back to the lake and then I ran into turtle village…
2017-04-02 13.03.28  2017-04-02 13.03.36

I walked back to my car, enjoying the beauty,nature the sun and reminding myself why I am doing all of this. I checked in on my friend, Norm who was in the mist of slogging through IMTX70.3 and I prayed for his run as I know he struggles through injuries too. I made it back to my car and 10 miles were done. Ugly but done.


I wrote this on my FB page when I got home later that day:

I am humbled by the response to the first of probably many meltdowns as I adapt, improvise, overcome and train like a madman towards 140.6.


My friend and consigliere, Brett H Lewis, sent this to me to remind me of my why and that I am RELENTLESS!

I love you all and I hope you will stick with me through the ups and downs of this journey.
#TeamRightBehindMe #IMMD2017

2017-04-02 16.07.04


JOURNEY TO IMMD - My Talismans

I have been remiss in blogging my IM Journey as I said I would and was soundly called out about it. I had to find an app that let me post on the phone and on the fly because by time I finish my daily Training Peaks Suffrage doled out by Coach Suzy, work, shove some semblance of food in my mouth - oh yeah - Feed the fam too, Ian usually in a state of OMG, there are 6 hours till I start again. The balance thing - BRUTAL. So, I have Bball practice duty tonight, found an app and I'm trying it out.--->>>

Last month (March 10th), I was hanging with my sorority sisters and after dinner we stopped in a store called Alex and Ani. They were all into the bracelets and I was just hanging cause I never heard of them. When my partner in crime, Patty,  asked me if one of the bracelets was a fit for her personality I was confused but read the symbols meaning and said yes. 

Then I started looking at all the "talismans" and their meanings and decided to put a set together that represented my journey to IMMD. My coach, Suzy McCulloch Serpico and trainer/mentor Shawn Chevalier always encourage to have that one word/phrase to get you through the tough times. 

This is my word -->

RELENTLESS - to be a fiery, driving force that lets no obstacle or setback get in the way of achieving a noteworthy goal.

I put this set of bracelets together as my reminder of my why...

SWIMMING - Perseverance, Heart, Sportsmanship

BIKE - Wellness, Movement, Spirit

RUN - Endurance, Heart, Sportsmanship

5 (Numerology) - Adventure, Free, Variety

FOUR LEAF CLOVER - Blessing, Fortune, Prosperity

GODSPEED (Cuff) - Journey, Blessing, Protection

I wore them that Sunday (March 11) at RockN Roll DC. It was colder than a witches tit. It was just downright disrespectful cold.

I had a real bad day...of my own making out there. My nutrition was so far off to be considered non-existent...and during those last 3/4 miles when I had no more gas, when I wanted to quit, give up and take a knee...I remembered I was RELENTLESS and I heard the jingle on my wrist...

And I brought it in.


Do Epic Stuff 2017–IMMD

2017-01-01 10.41.26

I haven’t blogged very much lately, but I wanted to make the big announcement and ask that you join me on this EPIC JOURNEY!


I promise to do better and keep you posted as I work on achieving my 2017 goal of completing my first Ironman. I signed up for Ironman Maryland after a lot of thought and reflection. I know I said I was going to hold off on any more long course racing for a while; however, a couple of things changed my mind.


First, I knew that if I put it off, I probably would never do it. Life has a way of getting in the way of best intentions and I ain’t getting any younger.


Second, I have arthritis with bony spurs – pretty bad in the left knee and I started out 2017 back in the Orthopedic Office getting shots in both knees…I could barely walk or go from sitting to standing to walking without significant pain. I knew I was having problems. Longer distances were becoming a serious problem with swelling, discomfort and extended recovery. I was getting slower and slower and the knees were getting worse.


Options? Walk – WALK FAST

So, knowing that I probably won’t be “running” much longer, I decided to GO FOR IT NOW! While the going is good.

What’s the plan?

  • I have an AWESOME coach
  • I started training EARLY, Jan 1 – burn out is a thought but I need to build up, get strong over a longer period of time and arrive to the start HEALTHY.
  • I have a great, balanced race schedule to get me race ready, practice nutrition, transitions and MENTAL TOUGHNESS
  • I am surrounded by the most AWESOME group of athletes, spectathletes and friends that believe in me.

The GOAL is set. The PLAN is written. Time to EXECUTE the plan.


On top of all of that, I was chosen to be a Ripit Events Ambassador. #RipItAmBADASSador


Yes, I have discount codes to the RipIt Events Races.


Join me as I go on this journey to do EPIC SHIT and be a BADASS! See you out there!