Monday, July 21, 2008
Friday afternoon I loaded the truck with sleeping bags, whining kids, a tent, and a bike rack. We picked up Sam from work and drove to Winding Trails in Farmington, Ct. We arrived around 2pm had a picnic and hit the beach! For the following 24 hours the fun didn't stop. Sam, Jarom and Jennica played in the water diving for rocks while Jace and I ventured in the pedal boat. At 6:30pm we pitched our tent, enjoyed a BBQ, then spent the evening boating, playing tag, hide -and -seek, and telling stories on the playground. We rolled into our tent around 10:30pm and enjoyed a warm night in the woods. The next morning breakfast was served, we took down our tent, went on a bike ride, then hit the beach again. By 2pm we filled the truck with sleeping bags, HAPPY kids, a tent and a bike rack and returned home a better family than we were the day before.
This was a great program I stumbled upon at the last minuet, surprisingly enough they still had openings. All we had to do was pay $50, provide the tent and they provided all the fun and food!
We'll defiantly do this again!
Posted by Ember at 9:55 AM
Monday, July 14, 2008
This is where it all happened. This is where the race began. A race I showed up late to, cheated in, and felt good in the end!
A friend and I drove an hour and a half to participate in the 'Winding Trails Triathlon' but due to TRAFFIC we arrived just as the race began. We didn't let that stop us though. We ran INTO the water just as the others were runinng OUT. I jumped in, fully clothed, with groups of kids, lifegaurds, and families witnessing my desperate attempt to swim 1/4 of a mile. I laughed within at the pity applause that greeted me as I emerged from the water 10 min. after the others!! I had to shake my indignity along with my water loaded clothes and move on to the next challenge. To the spectators we were the two that swam 10 min. SLOWER than the rest of the pack. I was thrilled that I swam 1/4 of a mile in 10min. given the last time I swam was in the St. Geroge Triathlon in Utah last year! It was still a little on the embarassing side to start out 10mins behind everyone else! But hey, I didn't have to deal with the kicks in the face and splashes that come with jumping in the water at gunshot.
As a matter of fact showing up late offered more than I expected. Because the race had already started we weren't able to register, therefore, we didn't get a timing chip or have to pay the fee! We also missed out on the directions reguarding the trail paths. This "little" detail worked to our advantage! Once we managed to get our soggy feet into our shoes we climbed on our bikes and took off. All went well until the blue arrows and the red arrows that had consistantly pointed in the same direction now split up! We paused for a moment and realized we were missing some critical information and pushed ahead following red. After a few minuets we noticed through the trees, on a different path, some bikers. I called out: "Which path is for the biking, red or blue?" The reply was: "red for run, blue for bike." We were obviously on the wrong path. We sloved that problem easily by cutting across the grass and joining them! Now, the question is- How much time did we cheat by doing this??? I still have no clue. But this is where things got intense.
This trail riding was serious adventure stuff! I had a firm grip on my handlebars in fear of being shaken off my bike! The trail was all over the place! Up, down, up, DOWN, over logs, between trees, over bridges, bumps, bumps and many more bumps. I was nervous about my bike falling apart. After 8 miles of this constant pulsation the transation station was a happy site. I hopped off the bike and again started the run down the path with the blue and red arrows together. This time fully aware of their meaning. At this point of the race I could see some (perhaps a lot) of time was made up due to the bike mishap. hehehe
The final event was the 3 mile run. I was happy to see I wasn't alone at this point. Running on trails was very entertaining. I really pushed myself in hopes to make up some more time. In the beginning I could see people ahead of me but once I passed them I seemed to be the only one out there. For about a mile I didn't see anyone. A sudden fear struck me! I totally cheated on the bike and now I'm running at the head of the pack! I am such a CHEATER!!! That's about as long as I dwelt on that and I kept running with a sly smile on my face. I was feeling rather energetic. I soaked up the glory thoughts and pushed my strides. This may be my best run yet! Then it happened... the wall that most out- of -shape -runners hit was just around the corner. That wall didn't effect me at all but appearently it was bruital to a lot of others. I came upon groups of people walking. My vision of kicking butt (thanks to cheating) was kicked to the dirt. I just about choked on my HUGE slice of humble pie as it was made obvious that I am still catching up! I kicked it into gear again and refused to let up on the hills that were coming like waves. I had to resort to "positive" thoughts and even chants at times like the Little Engine That Could. I was puffing away up those hills, passing those big engines that "looked" very capable but didn't have the Little Engine heart. This "positive" self-talk must have been a bit overboard because just around a bend I emerged from the trees into a soft meadow of sand. As I entered into the clearing I took my mind off the trail and SPLAT, just like on Bambie. I went down. I was doing the log roll in the mound of sand. I jumped right up and sheepishly looked about and ran on, hoping the people I just passed on that hill weren't within sight. I was a little uncertain where I should allow my thoughts to wander. I had enough humble pie for the evening so my brain switched to default and my normal thoughts while running alone through the woods began....I was worried about seeing a snake! Now, this was the proper motivation I needed. My feet were quick! I crossed the finish line (well, not really. I had to walk around it because I didn't have a timing chip) with my mind obsessed with snakes, my stomach full of humble pie, and my body covered in sand. It was clear at the finish line that I was definatly in my "own world" during the race. People were already pulling away from the parking lot, or deeply relaxed in a messauge. When I returned to my once over filled bike rack. My own bike stood out as if it were mocking me. I admit, I too, laughed at myself for getting such a kick out of a little white CHEAT and over indulged imagination. But, I did put forth an Honest effort while I was cheating!
Posted by Ember at 5:24 PM
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Beginning today I am a Triathlete in training....yesterday, not quite so. I have 3 months to train for the Darien Ct. Triathlon. Over the past two months I have been a slave to my mattress and to treats. I have enjoyed ice cream, brownies, pecan pies, ice cream, cookies, and did I mention ice cream? As a result I have, of course, added a few "fluffy" pounds over the summer.
So this morning at 5:30am I greeted my encouraging alarm with a sigh of relief. Time to get my butt in shape! (literally) As I was running I felt "myself" once again. I love exercising. I love what it does for me emotionally. (the physical aspect is a great perk too) I find I am a happy, motivated, proactive Mama if I am exercising. I get things done by 9am that would otherwise take me all day to get motivated to do. I eat better, I sleep better, and I love my kids and man better.
So, I am happy to say good-bye to my sweet tooth and hello to my bike, shoes, pool, and my life again. Any takers??
Posted by Ember at 9:57 AM