Wednesday, December 03, 2008


I decided to play tourist a couple weeks ago after my XC race in Golden Gate Park; I drove through the Presidio and snapped some photos on this gorgeous day...

UPDATE: Thanks for everybody's comments on the Alcatraz Tri post. And Greg, thanks for seeing the light. I just wanted to share that if you're really intent on the idea of swimming from Alcatraz, there are plenty of other events around here that allow you to do that. AND there's also another Alcatraz Tri - it's not the 'official' "Escape From Alcatraz" Triathlon; it's called "Escape from the Rock" and is put on by Envirosports - costs $175 to do it and you don't have to enter a lottery. How about that? There's also a duathlon that is just the swim/run (thanks, Arthur!) called the Alcatraz Challenge. There are a few other swim-only events as well - I will do some info gathering and post the different events for people in case they're interested.

I've got a zillion thoughts flying through my mind right now, so much to write and say, never enough time to get it all down.

One decision I've made is to take a little more time with some of my posts (inspired by a wonderful conversation I recently had about writing). Some posts will continue to be the same 'this-and-that' nature with random things thrown in, others will be longer and more prose-like (like my Thanksgiving post). I miss writing in that style and I recently realized that I got away it. I thought I was keeping my writing practice going with this blog, but as I looked through posts of late, I realized that I wasn't really writing in the style I favor most.

And I had to ask: what IS the purpose of my blog?

I know, I know, such a SERIOUS question to ask on my blog, isn't it? Before you know it I might be pondering the purpose of life.

Not really. I ask the question of purpose not to invoke deep philosophical thoughts of 'why do we blog?' but more to invoke the thought of 'where do I want to take this?' During the race season, we pepper our blogs with our stories of pre-race jitters, race foibles and successes, and post-race assessment of what we learned and how next time will be better.

And I enjoy that. It is so great to go back to old race stories and see how much I've grown, or re-live the memory of my first Wildflower, or my first triathlon.

But what about the in-between? I mean, in-between the training sessions, too. I enjoy using my blog as an outlet to express my frustrations (read: Escape From Alcatraz Tri) and random thoughts. However, I also think it is the perfect opportunity to take up the practice of challenging myself to write in a more structured manner. It is something I really enjoy but really don't do much of anymore.

SO, if you occasionally happen on a post that is more serious or less conversational, that is what it is!

ON a more conversational note, I had a great run last night. I don't say that very often it seems, but it really was. Tuesday Track workouts are now Tuesday Street-run workouts, where we run through the neighborhoods and go hard for two blocks, easy for one, then hard for two, etc. We did twelve of those. I had a ball! Slightly less hardcore than track workouts, but still a good push and in spite of the upper-forty-degree temps we were running in, I was still drenched in sweat (which actually made me colder when we slowed down...brrr).

I was also very proud that Holly showed up. That's TWO people I've recruited to join in the workouts on Tuesdays!

Tonie, Holly and I at the Girls on the Run 5K

Not only was I happy because I like it when more people join the fun (and/or pain), but I am convinced that anybody who goes to these workouts regularly will really see benefits. I know I see improvements in my running since I started. Group workouts are so wonderful in the way that you push yourself harder than you might if it were just you, yourself

Somebody was recently telling me about how, as a Team in Training coach, it is so rewarding for him to see how far his runners come - to being able to run a marathon from their first days where running two miles was a big deal.

It was very similar last night. Holly exclaimed excitedly after we finished, "WOW! I looked at my Garmin and I was running at a pace I've NEVER run at before!" I smiled outside but I was really beaming on the inside because I just know she's going to continue to see improvements. It was so incredible to feel like I played a small part in initiating growth and improvement for someone.

I was also really impressed with her motivation to partake. The people who do the Tuesday run workouts are FAST. I think anybody who's somewhat new to running would be intimidated to join in. But I convinced Holly that it's a very welcoming group. As I ran up to meet the group, there she was! Now, let's hope she comes back...

I took this last weekend on my ride out to Napa. This was riding through Kenwood (Kunde Vineyards), still in Sonoma County...


Anonymous said...

umm, you're welcome, i guess(?)

I like the new look to the blog, btw. I don't know why I blog, honestly.

Kathleen @ ForgingAhead said...

Great post! Looking forward to your experimentation with more *structured* writing. You are a naturally inspirational kinda of person and people love to follow you!

Mel said...

you blog....BECAUSE we would MISS you if you didn't:) I can tell you are very sweet..but also won't take shit if type of girl:) I LOVE blog girls so keep bloggin!!!

Anonymous said...

I will be coming back... in fact, I joined tonight. :)

Lee said...

I really enjoy your more structured prose style of writing. I also enjoy it when you are calling things as they are. I guess I am saying I enjoy whatever you write so just keep writing.

Maggs said...

I go back and forth between babble and decent writing on my blog too. Sometimes it's just a way to get a thought down. I can't tell you the # of posts i've written but never posted.

Thanks for the info on Alcatraz. Someday I'll do the other one. I have a friend who did a swim a few years ago and had a great time.

rocketpants said...

Blogs are for exploring your voice and how ever you really want to do is after all *your* blog. Looking forward to what you will dish out in the future.

It is always great to get other people involved in the sport further...whether it is running their first 5K or just seeing some awesome improvements that is from track workouts. I got to help coach some friends through their first 5K and it was just an awesome experience.