Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Attack of the Tribe

I had prepared a sentimental post about our day with BNB and the Tribe at the "Greatest Hobby on Earth" expo-wall to wall trains-Thomas, N scale, O scale, HO-even a remarkable lego city constructed with over a million blocks.

That was until we had ham for dinner.

But, Trimama, how can salted pork possibly derail a touching tribute to the Tribe?

Well, as you may or may not know,

Ham is PIG BUTT!

Trihubby is slammed with work and called to say that he wouldn't be home for dinner, which means one thing, a four on one fast break, that even in her hey day, Trimama couldn't defense.

No, the only hope you have in a 4 on 1 is to not get slammed on.


SLJ was helping me cook and therefore the first to make the discovery on the ham packaging.

(In general we don't use the word "butt" in our family. Too crass by my grandmother's standards.)


BNB stop saying pig butt and eat your dinner.

Soapinator, stop making tooting (farting-another shunned word) noises.

No, the ham doesn't have gas. It's ham.


HG, if you say one more thing about potato poops you are leaving the table.


Stop with the pigbutt and eat.

"I am eating-it's pig butt"

eeewwwww fits of giggles.

Soap you are eating pig, you are not a pig-we eat with forks at the dinner table


No, you don't need to sing pigbutt either.

The only hope you have in defensing a 4 on 1 is to break to the ball handler and try to distract them so as to cause a turnover.

Hyphen Girl, how was you day?

I can't wait to tell the kids at school that we had pigbutt for dinner.

eeeewwwwww pig butt! fits of giggles


When you miss that first pass you break down to the next ball handler trying to block the passing lane under the basket.

SLJ, why don't you go get the rest of the ham from the stove.

Pigbuttttttttt, pig butttttttt (operetic style)


Yes, Soap the fork rule includes salad. It especially includes salad.

HG, I know you feel bad for the pig, but I think it's highly unlikely that he now cares if we are eating his butt.

eeeeewwwwwwwww! Mom said BUTT!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tribe 98
Trimama 0

Friday, February 24, 2006

Focus, you can do this thing.

The amazing thing about the multisport community is that they truly are a community, and thanks to the blogosphere, all are welcome. We read about each other's training and lives and we virtually involve ourselves daily. I recently listened to
Get your geek on!
podcast and as usual found it very informative and encouraging. We have podcasts. I'm doubtful that there are podcasts for the NBA or NFL. Yet, Mad Mel McQuaid, World Champion Triathlete was enthusiastic about sharing her coaching tips and life story. All to inspire the little people. Most pros don't care so much about inspiration as notoriety. Simply Stu drove the point home when he pointed out that the pros are among those cheering at the finish line at Ironman Wisconsin-at MIDNIGHT! Then there are athletes like Steven who is a great coach and nice guy who left this comment after my last post:
"I tri, and I can swim, but I cannot swim fast. Nor will I ever. I'm stuck at 1:20-1:25 IM swims forever I'm pretty sure.
But it's all in perspective, right? I wouldn't trade my sub-6'ish IM bike nor my 3:40'ish IM run for a 1:10'ish swim.
Just put in the laps and the rest will take care of itself." The fact that an elite Ironman athlete pops by my blog and makes comments, with the proverbial pat on the back, underscores my point. Lest you think his comments are self indulgent, this is the first I knew of just what a stud athlete he is- check out his site.
Then there are the ever consistent Keryn and Flatman who are just everywhere, all the time, cheering and encouraging. Athletes in their own right, and sadly not on the IMFL team- I've named them the official cheerleaders (of course without asking first) of my training team.

I'm officially rushing now, time to get the Tribe to school, or I would list more sources of inspiration-but I've got to fly-can't really write an excuse note-please excuse HG's tardiness, I was busy blogging....-

I've participated in a lot of sports, and I follow a lot of college and pro sports, and I've never seen the type of open, encouraging athletes as what you see in multisport.

Definitely worth the price of admission.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Pardon me while I obsess

About my swimming ability again.

I admit, I envy Kahuna's andTrisaratop's "I am a swimmer" abilities.

Let's face it, the only swimming race I ever won was the sprint up the matriarch's tubes. That I was the gold medalist in the zygote olympics really isn't saying much for the other chaps in the pool. Although, that gold medal is my fall back position if I'm ever in the midst of a truly bad day.

I wasn't always such a loser- I did win that one race.

As we all know, fate has a sense of irony. I embarked on my illustrious swimming metier as a "Dolphin" in the pools of southern California. It's possible that branding the entry level swimmers as dolphins was overly optimistic, in particular on my part, but Californians have a right to be optimistic in their young swimmers for two reasons: essentially every back yard in California comes equipped with a pool and, a sizeable portion of the world's greatest swimmers hale from the Golden State. A dolphin I was not, and the closest I came to water was standing in the puddle of my tears that formed at mom's feet. I endured several more attempts at lessons until my parents were satisfied that I wouldn't drown near water, but by that time we had moved to Colorado where the chances of drowing in the vast sea of arid foothills and mountains was slim. My swimming motivation was piqued by the prospect of membership at the neighborhood pool. The privilege to go to the pool without adult supervision required the ability to swim 25 yards, all at once, alone. Gulp. But the pool held the allure of friends from school, summer freedom and a $0.25 slushie machine. So, I thrashed my way through 25 yards, and by means of daily practice actually became a decent tadpole. Colorado isn't nearly so optimistic in their swimmers.

At some point in my young adult life a seed called triathlon was sown into my fertile soul, but it would be 20 years before that soil was ready to culitvate. The genesis of my passion for multisport remains a mystery to me as I quite literally awoke one morning very early in '05 smitten with the idea of becoming a triathlete. So enticed was I by multisport that come hell and high water I was going to learn to swim. In spite of all my previously failed attempts at swimming laps, even resorting to the use of a mask and snorkle (I inferred to the life guard that I was practicing for some exotic vacation I was going to take) I just couldn't cross that breathing in the water hurdle. It once again took the allure of freedom, friends and $0.99 gel packs to get me to thrash my way to 25 yards.

Then with practice 25 yards became 400 yards which became 3300 yards which will become Ironman.

I had a bad swim last night. My arms were sluggish and I couldn't seem to get them to speed up. My workout:

600 w/u 100 free 50 kick w/out a board followed by 200 drill of choice (This took me 20 minutes-jump in, swim to other end for kickboard, fins, pull buoy, swim back this 50 doesn't count-ear plugs-naw, half way down the lane-hey dopey, remember you are trying to keep water out of your ears because you're tired of the ocean sound at night-go back get ear plugs in-defog goggles. Swim the 150, stop to breathe because you are still digesting the bean soft taco from lunch. Swim another 150, contemplating what the drills would be-forget the other 300 w/u let's just go to drills- hello-does 70.3 in June mean anything to you? Finish 300 w/u go to drills.

2X 500 race pace + :30 First 250 5:00 minutes. That would not be a real great race pace-better pick it up a little
Second 250 4:50 ok a little better- more so because I remembered the mega weight lifting session I embarked on Saturday. My muscles are always aerobically sluggish after a weight session-

Second 500 (decided to do it as a pull) 10:45 with a n/s on second 250
8X100 There is no way I'm going to get in the prescribed 3250 and get to work on time and I'm swimming poorly so it's time to wrap this up and call it a 2200 day instead.

So, I did alternating 50 and 100 sprints until I got to 2200 yards. By this time Trihubby had unbeknownst to me joined the Tribe in the pool, so he helped me practice flip turns. I've gotten to the point where I can do them decently, I just need to get over my inhibition and work them into my swimming vocabulary. So, I left the pool yesterday acutely aware that I am not a swimmer-yet.

In my evangelical attempts to recruit folks to the sport of triathlon I often hear the rebuff, "oh, I'd do a tri but I really can't swim."

Face it folks, if a dolphin can learn to swim, so can you.

Monday, February 20, 2006

I give up

As you may or may not notice, I'm trying to update my blog- so why is my link colume cascading to the right?

Point 5-aaaaagggghhhhhh!!!!!!!!

The day of the state swimming tournament had arrived. The culmination of 5 months of training and meets boiling down to one race-50 yards. We arrived at the U of MN aquatic center at 8:30 am for body marking and warm ups. 10:00 anthem and let the games begin.

Trihubby and I traded shifts at the pool and at home so as to leave the rest of the Tribe at home. $3.50 for a coke at the concession stand, $2.50 for a bag of candy and not much space to manuever = wise decision.

Originally Hyphen Girl was set to swim the 50 free and the 4X200 free but when we arrived we learned she would only swim the relay. For the most part she had a good attitude about the whole day-hangin with friends and cheering for her teammates. After about 9 hours, she did begin to question her whole point in being there. I explained that when you are on a team, every member counts. In this state meet there is a point value assigned to each finish, with first receiving 40 some points, second 30 some points etc. Each swimmer counts whether they place or not. At the mid point of the meet they announced the team standings and her team was in first place out of 23 teams. Wow!

Finally her race was called and she went to queue up with her relay team. At the start of the relays they announced the team standings again. Her team held a 60 point lead for first place; kids you'd better make your relays count. As they had all day, the kids swam their hearts out, and the points continued to drop in the Tidal Wave bucket. Then her race was up. There were 4 heats of girls 12 and under swimming and she was heat 3-the second fastest grouping. They swam well but hit the wall 7th of 8 teams. Oh, dissappointment.

Mom, we didn't win. We didn't even place. I can't believe I just wasted an entire day for nothing.

Well, it's not "nothing" for two reasons.

One, experience. You now know what the pressure of a big meet feels like, and what you need to do to qaulify in more events next year.

Two, points. As I said, every race counts. Every point counts. You won't know until the end of the meet how your points affect the outcome.

On to Fuddruckers. We left before the final team standings were announced because it was now an 11 hour day and the whole crew was waiting for the celebration dinner at Fuddrucker's. Half way through our meal, much to our surprise, the coaching crew came through the door.

Did we win?

1791 to 1791.5

We lost our title bid by 0.5

0.5 is agony to a coaching staff.

One kid sick, 2 very suspect dq's, one hand just a little slower than the next kid, one entire age group of relays missing (recruiting has begun), one place.

One place we win, one place we lose.

But they didn't lose. They took 2nd place among 23 teams-6 of which are very impressive clubs. 2nd place among outstate clubs that have the luxury of being the only swim club in town. We have the choice of at least a dozen clubs to participate with alone- Dozens of kids qualified for the Regional meet. Dozens of kids shaved their times down over the season. Much character and sportsmanship was imparted.

And at least 3 kids I know had alot of fun.

Friday, February 17, 2006

I'd like to file a complaint please.

Your Local Forecast
Low: -18 °F
Colder. Mostly clear... More

Hello...is anyone there? Hellooooooo? Would someone please explain to me who thought up 20 freakin below?
20 freakin' below. Who comes up with these things?

You are a moron.

Ok, check that. Obviously the creator of the universe can do as he pleases-who am I to complain.

20 freakin' below. That is as far away from biking as you can get. Well actually, we've had straight temps of 36 below in the recent past, but this is today.

So, to my scandanavian relatives

What were you thinking?

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

100 what????

Yesterday, in addition to Valentines, was the 100th day of school-an achievement celebrated in primary school. To honor the fortuitous occasion, Standing Long Jump, the one honing his cheating acumen, compiled a packet of of 100's with his classmates. First page, the "100 Days of School"song, sung to the tune of "It's a Small World Afterall" -one of those songs that has the effect of the brain eating yeti eel-my apologies. The following page is a compilation of wishes by 100's: "I wish I had: 100 pieces of candy" but I wouldn't want: 100 schools... I could eat 100: pieces of candy, I could eat 100 chocolates but I couldn't eat: 100 burritos. Following the list of 100's were several pages of 10's- 10 groups of 10's to be exact. 10 animals, 10 girls names, 10 boys names 10 kinds of fruit

10 drinks:
root beer
Sierra Mist
Mountain Dew

RUM! WINE! BEER! What are teaching this boy?!

He forgot Tequila!

Where is the Teguila?!

Now on to the next pages.

"This is me at 100 years old" A tombstone. He drew a tombstone. With his name on it. However, not to be deterred by death, his favorite food will be: Apple Pie, his favorite thing to do will be: rest and the thing he will not want to do is: run. This one definitly goes into the "keeper file"

Onward, it's a bike/weights/ recess and it is so damn cold out aaggghhh day. I will probably spin to the olympics,


Monday, February 13, 2006

Ok, I love Spinervals

It might be the atmosphere-gathered with 10 or 12 fellow tri geeks in the cramped confines of our local bike shop-it might be the constant barking of the coach to push harder, reminiscent of my days on the hardwood and turf, it might have been as simple as Trimama needed a morning out-but I loved Spinervals. Actually it is probably a combination of the three-in that order of influence. Good to see Chris drag himself from his warm bed and join us-he laid the pedal down with ease, barely breathing at 120 rpm, while Trimama sounded like she was going one on one with Ali (the daughter). See, it's hard to not have a game face when you are bringing smack down to the Spinerval coach. Speaking of game face, if you've followed my blog you remember this pic from the finish of my first open water tri, last June. I was obviously exuberant-which is a rare emotion in the nordic states-so the photog snapped my picture-probably for scientific evaluation. The next thing I knew, my pic was on the front page of the local paper, the banner of the results page of the race and therefore posted on the counter of my local tri shop. They liked the fact that I was sporting their "flames" in a race sponsored by the competitor. So, to this day my pic hangs alongside the autographed pics of the pros and other biking folks like Greg Lemond. Little did I know how thorough the phot og was that day-seems there were several pics of the Trimama, including one "game face" photo, which is now Aaaggghh available to every person who picks up a copy of Midwest Multi sport magazine, is it too late to move to northern France? I hear face transplant patients get to keep their voice. Ok, given a circulation of about 20, it's not People, but it is local-I sort of prefer annonymous.
Go ahead, cue Carly ....You're so vain.....-I'm done now.

Standing Long Jump, the 7 almost 8 year old just demonstrated how you can convert an "F" on a paper to an "A"- I suppose that might serve him well at some point in his life-the point in which he has become infinitely smarter than his mother and is able to pass that deception under her nose. Good grief, if he gains that degree of saavy he'd better be able to avoid the "F" altogether.

Turns out Soapinator made state as an alternate. She is praying for someone to get sick. Allow me to explain, or at least remind you that this is the child I had to throw into the pool the first few races of each of the first few meets. Turns out she loves swimming. Who would've known? I am fairly certain that by the time I understand this evolution of, protest everything mom and dad want you to do, even if it is fun, until you think it is safe to find it fun because you don't think mom will notice the change and might even call you on it, the phase will have passed. I think in the end elementary kids just want you as a wall behind their backs so they know they have somewhere to run and hide if things don't work out so well. They will go out on a limb if they know 1) they have no choice and 2) they have no avenue for failure. In our house you only fail when you refuse to try.

Know this: mom is smart enough to know when an "F" has been converted to an "A".

I'm not going to comment on the mom of the 7 year old who said that if her daughter wasn't finishing first or second in the races there was just no point to being on the swim team.

This is a family blog.

2500 yds in the pool today as follows

300 w/u 300 kick w/fins 300 pull
300 3 stroke breathing 300 1 stroke rt 300 1 stroke lft 2X300 pull n/s 100 cool down

followed by 4.5 miles on the 'tonka speedway where 18 laps=1 mile

2.5 at easy, fat burning (striving for 70.3 weight) 9 min miles followed by
2.0 8:30 miles

stretch/cool down

If you haven't done so yet-remember the podcasts of "throughth3wall.com" and "trigeekdreams.com"

Trimama out.

Friday, February 10, 2006

aaaaaagggghhhh chooo!

My hands are blue as I type this. Does anyone care enough to send me an airplane ticket to someplace warm? We are just back in the doghouse here again- cold and snowy. And I have a head cold. Not a problem except that it is speed week for training. Is it a problem when your heart rate monitor doesn't want to drop below 165 through your run and it really wants to hover at 180-hey look my heart is about to explode in my chest. Actually, I think because this stupid crud is sitting somewhere between my ears and chest, I'm just not breathing that well and it makes my heart work harder. I cut the hour run by a few minutes and worked a lot harder on the weights. I can bench 85 pounds now-whoo hoo- only 15 to go to get to 100. Trihubby and I went the ultra romantic route and bought free weights for each other for Valentine's day- it was his idea, I wanted to get the chocolate body paint. But we are all serious about training now and chocolate isn't on the training menu-would it be gross if I bought it anyhow and licked myself-yea definitely. Tomorrow is a spinning morning with the tri club and that will conclude speed week. It's back to base camp next week.

It might be the head cold, it might be the "my friends and I joke about how an ironman is 2X's the distance but 4X's harder" comment made by Chivalry Chris (sorry no link today) in week 2 Podcast of Iron Wil and Kahuna, whatever, but I've been having some serious "what the he#@ am I thinking" moments lately about Florida. Then I heard a great song on VH1 called "Unwritten"-I'll try to find a link later- it is a perfect "just get out there and do it" song. I also know that I need to get in some long bike rides as soon as it is warm enough to ride-that for me is the missing link. I know I can swim, I know I can run, but can I bike

112 freakin' miles?

I don't know.

and I won't know until this winter finally comes to an end.

Is it ever going to end...............aaaaaagggggggghhhhhhh chooooooooooooooooo!


Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Going to State!

Hyphen Girl is going to State! She qualified in the 50 free and the 200 free relay. I'm glad she has the chance to swim an individual and team event.

It was superhero day at school yesterday-a reward for the classes doing a certain number of service/servant acts. I suggested she dress like her mom-hahahahahahaha- I don't think her eyes have returned to their normal position after that roll.

Life is good when you can achieve a whitewater Kayak look from your tweener.

I want to thank everyone for their keen insight and instruction regarding my Spock hands in the swim. In the end I've decided to implement Bolder's

"stick the two fingers -- the two that form the innermost part of the V -- directly into your nostrils, and have them remain there for an extended period of time.this is the natural spacing recommended in the Total Nosepicking swim program.your fingers will learn the correct spacing through the TN muscle memory system.
repeat several times a day with each hand.
no need to thank me, i'm here to help.

Thanks Bolder, I knew I could count on my fellow Coloradoan.

Finally, Wendy, "Wingnut" Ingraham, 5 time WTC Ironman Champion is coming to town for a VIP Night at my local bike shop and she is going to be doing a fashion show for Tyr. They want models-specifically a female model.

The Question is, do they want TRIMAMA?

While I wouldn't describe myself as shy, I also wouldn't say I'm a front stage person either- is the humiliation worth the free swag?

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Hey everyone, I'm rich!

Well, not me, but Buck Naked Boy. He has exactly six quarters and one nickle. That's a lot of coin for a five year old. We spent Saturday at the sectional swim meet and booya for him, they had a concession stand. Throughout the day I was handing him dollars, without realizing I was receiving no change back. (I was a little preoccupied losing my voice over the course of 15 or so races) so, it wasn't until arriving at grandma's for dinner and he made his grand announcement, that I discovered his newly acquired treasure. Possession is 9/10ths the law, so he can have the money. Given his pack rat nature he'll count those quarters ad infinitum.

Sectionals were exciting. Hyphen Girl, who had swam with relative indifference during the season poured on the speed and swam her fastest times ever-we find out Tuesday, but chances are good for her to qualify for state in three events. Standing Long Jump has an outside chance of going in one event-not bad for a kid who couldn't swim a 25y in October. Soapinator is in the most populated age group and probably won't go to state this year-but I was so proud of her; she went from panicked -to the point of throwing up - to swimming like a fish and also swam her fastest races all year. If she can get about 10 more yards out of her arms she will be a contender in the ten and under age group next fall.

A note for all the parents/aunts/uncles/grandparents out there: Soapinator struggles in schools and always has. Reading, math, you name it, and it's a challenge. Poor kid would get so flumaxed she stopped trying. I had a hunch swimming might be good for her as the coaches are terrific and she loves to swim. She didn't want anything to do with racing though and as I mentioned went through various stages of fright/crying/vomiting/asthma/panic attacks before each meet. I pretty much shoved her in the pool the first couple of races. She would speed down and back and jump out of the pool like a little puppy dog all wiggly and excited for the next race. No more panic. Finally, by meet four she won her heat and as she came back to me for her towel, I gave her a high five and commented "you're a swimmer now Soapinator!"

"And a reader! I swim and read"

Sure enough, I had a chat with her teacher and she was reading just above grade level. Not only that, but she was volunteering to take her individualized reading tests-a thing that had caused more panic than swim races. You can't buy that kind of confidence which a good sports team will give to your child-

even if I do win the "worst mother of the year award" for throwing her in the pool. What???? I knew she wouldn't really throw up. Oh, thank god she didn't- it takes 24 hours of filtering and shock treatments before it can be swam in again. uugggghhh!

Speaking of swimming-mine is going along fine-I'm covering 3200 yards comfortably about 2X per week. I'm arranging some coaching for our tri club- Chivalry 'Iron' Chris is on the same team and volunteered to look at our mechanics. It would really stink if I was doing it all wrong-that's a lot of untraining, but I'd rather know now than in June when I sink to the bottom of Lake Independance. I know off hand that my propensity for "Spock" hands is not a good thing. Don't ask me why, I have no idea, but I create a "V" with my fingers each time I grab at the top of my stroke. I've tried to focus on closing my hand, but inevitably I end up with Spock again. Maybe it's my closet Trekie trying to escape. I might try taping my hands for next workout.

Any other thoughts?