Weekend WrapUp

Not only was this past weekend Memorial Day in America, but it was also hubby's birthday weekend in the Berry household.

Friday night was spent in suspense. A lot of suspense. And nerves. And then deja vu (insert thingies over vowels here). We spent the night at home watching Game 7 of the Bruins series (to avoid a possible re-encounter with zombies). I really wanted to see the Bruins win. There is something about being in the same town as one of the Stanley Cup finalist that seems really intriguing and exciting to me. For all you newbie followers, I was in London and Paris for the last games of the World Cup last July. The atmosphere surrounding the World Cup games in Europe is just something else. Nothing in America can compare to it. Parisians were so excited for the final game and their country wasn't even playing. I'm hoping that the Stanley Cup finals in Boston will be at least half as exciting. Seeing them celebrating on the ice after the game reminded me of my recent trip to the National Championship game. Man, its been quite the year for this sports fanatic.

Saturday was Ben's birthday. We started the day by going on a 42 mile bike ride. The we spent the day shopping and went to dinner at Cheesecake Factory and had lots of noms like cheesecake (double nom).

Sunday was a much needed day off from working out. Although, by day off, I don't think they meant spend hours walking around and shopping at the outlet mall. We don't normally shop this much, but I needed replacements for the heels I broke pre-commencement and I am attending a professional conference at the end of the month and I have a serious lack of business casual clothing. Actually, I have tons of polos and khakis, but the polos are school logo-d and I wanted something plain for the conference. I also needed some nice button up shirts in case of interview.

Yesterday, we went with the team on a bike ride and swim. Well, actually, thanks to my monthly gift and my anemia, my legs were absolutely dead, so I really struggled to keep up on the bike. I excused myself from swimming by saying that I didn't feel well. In reality, I found a secluded area where I just sat and cried out of frustration until the team returned. The moodiness even led to an argument with Ben. Definitely not the best start to the day. We got cleaned up and went to the beach to relax. There's nothing like the warmth of the sun, the softness of the sand, and the coolness of the waves (although, you could argue that the waves were more icy than cool) to just wash the stress and edginess away. I wish I could live closer to the beach. Right now, we're about a 20 minute drive away and we're possibly moving even further away. I feel like life would be a lot more relaxing lived on the beach. We came home and made hot dogs (for Ben), brats (for me), and fruit salad for dinner.

Now, its back to being a lonely housewife. Still no news on the "getting a job" front other than I applied to Adrian College in Michigan this weekend. It is only about a 40 minute drive from Ben's parents' house (how does that translate to minutes biking?). Ben's uncle and aunt graduated from Adrian and his uncle even played football with the current Athletic Director there. The position would be with the men's ice hockey team who also happened to lose in the National Championship game this year too. Hmm...

Back to cleaning for me.

Toss Up Tuesday:

How I Survived My First Encounter With Zombies

It was about a year ago when I had my first, and so far only, encounter with zombies. The hubby and I made the trek to downtown Boston to find a cozy little bar in which to watch Game 7 of the Bruins vs. Flyers game. Only a few days earlier, the Bruins had taken a 3-0 series lead, putting them only one game away from moving on to the next round. And yet, here we were, a few days later, and the Flyers had managed to tie the series at 3 forcing a Game 7.

We had not yet had dinner, so finding a place that served food and didn't have a line down the street was difficult to say the least. We finally found a place that even included beer girls handing out free t-shirts. We ordered our beer and some chicken wings and got ready to enjoy the game. It looked promising as the Bruins jumped out to an early 3-0 lead (sound familiar?). As time went on, the Flyers scored one goal and then another to slowly close the gap. Before we knew it, the game was tied at 3 (again, sound familiar?). It was frustrating to see them blow such a substantial lead. As time ticked by, eventually the Flyers scored goal number 4 to put them in the lead for the first time in the game. And the score would remain that way until the final buzzer sounded.

All of a sudden, we found ourselves in quite the predicament. We had gone from chilling in the seemingly safe little bar, to being stranded in downtown Boston following a Bruins Game 7 loss. We knew that if we wanted to make it out alive and in one piece, we needed to move and fast. As we stepped out of the bar, we could already hear them, the groans, the moaning, the blood curdling screams.

"We need to get out of here. NOW!" We almost said in unison.

We quickened our pace towards the Government Center T station. We knew that with the North Station being the busiest station, that is where they would likely attack first. Government Center was the next closest so we figured we would use that for our getaway.

We always thought that they would be a lot slower, like the ones you see on TV stumbling down the street seemingly drunk. However, they may be slow, but I would liken our situation to that of a horror movie. You know, the ones where the victim could be in a dead sprint and the murderer is walking at a snail's pace and is yet somehow still gaining on his or her victim? Our fast walk quickly turned into a jog and then more of a sprint. There were a few others running along with us who had managed to also escape unscathed.

As we neared the station, all of the beer I had drank at the bar was really starting to catch up to me.

"I don't think I can make it," I said to Ben as we passed some Porta Potties. "I really need to go."

"Quickly," he said, "We want to make it on the train before they get here."

I dashed into the first available Potty. Who am I kidding? It was 11PM on the day of the Zombie Apocalypse. There was no one in any of the Potties. Before this night, I had never realized how hard it is to use a Porta Potty in the dark. You forget that they don't come equipped with lights until the rare occasion comes when you have to use it in the middle of the night. The fact that I was trying to hurry didn't make it any less messy.

I stumbled out of the Potty just in time to see them slowly coming up the street. I should really be given the Survivor Immunity Award just for that, but I don't think that would prevent me from being attacked.

We ran the rest of the way to the station just as a train was arriving. We quickly squeezed on with the other survivors. The train pulled away just as they got to the platform. They yelled and waved their fists angrily as we drove away to safety.

We emerged from this encounter without so much as a bruise or a scratch, but we'll be sure to be more prepared next time.

Song of the Week:
In honor of the Boston Bruins making it to the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since 1990.

Fist Pump Friday

I have to run a bunch of errands today so I won't have time to right a whole blog post. Actually, by errands I mean I am shoe and nail polish shopping, running, swimming and watching Game 7 tonight. ALMOST the perfect day.

Now, I leave you with the better "Friday" song.

Body by Cosmo Magazine

Since graduation, I have not had class (obvi) and have not been required to go in to work. It has been nice to just relax, catch up on watching my DVR recordings, read, clean, and most importantly, really focus on my triathlon training and eating healthier. Although, there have been moments that I have been bored, but that is just because I didn't feel like cleaning, but I have gotten better as the week went on. Also, as we'll likely be moving withing the next couple of months, we have discussed packing up the things we don't need right now, such as winter clothes (at least I hope we won't need them for a while).

I realized the other day that I had not done any strength training in over a month. I decided to change that yesterday. I did some upper body lifting at the gym and then some lower body body weight exercises and core exercises at home. I can tell I haven't lifted in a while. My butt is on fire today. Pre-commencement, I was focusing on getting my body "bikini ready", but it was half-hearted as the weather has been far from "bikini ready". Now, that it's supposed to be a high of 80 everyday this week, I've become more serious about toning up. 

I know it may sound silly, but for at home exercises, I have been doing exercises I have found in Cosmo magazine. Each month, Tracy Anderson (personal trainer to the stars) gives four exercises that target certain areas of the body and can be performed at home. Since my recent subscription to Cosmo, I have collected the following workouts (I feel like this is Pokemon...gotta catch 'em all): Slim Your Waist, Tone Your Triceps, and Lean Thighs-No Lunges. I have been doing the waist exercises for a while now and that in combination with my diet, I have definitely noticed more definition in my abs. I have even acquired (albeit small) upper ab dimples. And I noticed the dimples within a week of starting the exercises which was the most exciting part for me. 
I haven't been doing the tricep exercises as long, but I feel like my arms have always been one of my best features. They have always been naturally slim, so there was only minimal toning that was needed anyways. Although, I have been wanting a slightly more muscular look to my arms (think Kelly Ripa) than just slender.
And I did the Anti-lunging leg exercises for the first time yesterday. They definitely focus on the gluts (butt muscles). Hence, my firey butt today (no, I do not have hemorrhoids). Maybe it will make my butt less flat. Maybe one day, my butt will have its own Facebook page.
Mine is a Fine Ass in Waiting
Throwback Thursday:
Here we go, Bruins, Here we go!

Checking off New Year's Resolutions

Well, for those of you following along with my New Year's Resolutions, I took one leap yesterday. I put my name in the hat to be an extra in Salma Hayek's movie "Here Comes The Boom" which is being filmed in Lowell, MA. There were no auditions. It was purely based off of pictures and resume. I'm sure it didn't help that I just have pictures of me up and not official headshots, but needless to say, I did not get cast. However, there has been a big influx in people looking for extras or actors recently, so maybe next time it will work out.

Western Wednesay:
In honor of his new album release...

You May Now Call Me Master

I apologize for not giving daily updates. I have been crazy busy over the past couple of weeks. A lot happened this weekend, so I'll keep this brief...either making it more boring or less boring.

As you may or may not already know, I graduated this weekend, so my family and Ben's family were in town. Ben's family got into town Friday night, so we went to dinner and did a driving tour of Boston.

My parents flew in around noon on Saturday. We spent the morning with Ben's family walking the Freedom Trail until  I had to leave to pick up my parents at the airport.

Mass State House...notice the affixed Bruins playoff banner

I'm running out of reasons to not join this church..."The Best Way to Get Drunk"

Ben's parents wanted to go to the beach and Lexington and Concord. My parents didn't want to drive very much as they just got done spending hours on the plane. Plus, my dad had only slept six hours in the past two days and really just wanted to sleep. So Ben drove his family and I went shopping on Newbury Street with my mom.

That evening we all went to dinner at MJ O'Connors, which is as you can imagine, an Irish restaurant/pub. We celebrated Brooke's (my S-I-L) birthday and Ben's early birthday while we were there. I had quite the delicious mac 'n' cheese there.

Then of course Sunday was graduation day. In the morning, my college had its smaller ceremony where I actually received my diploma. At least this ceremony was indoors. It just so happened to be in the 50's and cloudy that day so we wanted to spend as little time as possible outside. However, the large ceremony was outdoors. It didn't matter that it was cold and windy. It just mattered that it wasn't raining. Katie Couric was the speaker at Commencement. She did a great job other than she used a lot of quotes in her speech, so most of it was someone else's speech anyways.

Katie Couric

After the ceremony, we went downtown for dinner at Legal Seafood. I had the lobster special which came with clam chowder, steamed lobster and cheesecake. Ben's parents had to drive home right after so we said our goodbyes. My parents came over to our apartment for a little bit to hang out...and taunt our hamster.
Ben's Family

My Parents

I was hungry

Ben's parents

My dad caught red handed taunting the hamster

The next morning, I joined my parents at their hotel for breakfast. My dad and I went for a walk while my mom showered and packed. When she was ready we drove over to the North End and walked around there. Of course, we had to make a pit stop at Mike's Pastries (a must if you ever visit Boston...I recommend the cannolis). We also walked over to the harbor and we were lucky enough to see a freight ship leaving the harbor.

Before I knew it, it was time to take my parents to the airport as well. I feel like we don't get to spend enough time with our families. Its harder not knowing for sure when we will see them again. I also didn't get to see my brother or sister either this weekend as they had school and what not themselves.

I applied for a position at Wake Forest. It would put us right smack dab in the middle between our parents (9hr each way) if I got that job. Although, I would take any position right now.

Toss Up Tuesday:

Mellow Monday

Didn't have time today to write a blog about my graduation weekend, but don't despair folks, I shall scribe on it tomorrow.

In the mean time, please enjoy some

Just to clear the air, I love listening to music, and so I would like to start posting a song of the day during the week. It is similar to the daily themes that we have at work in terms of what kind of music we listen to, but I tweaked it a little to my liking. On either Saturday or Sunday, I will then pick one of the songs that I played that week as my favorite and why.

The daily themes are:
Mellow (or Mumford) Mondays - Gotta stay calm on Mondays...long week ahead...and who doesn't love Mumford?
Toss Up Tuesday - Anything goes
Western Wednesday - Throw on those cowboy boots and let's get to stepping
Throwback Thursday - Anything pre-2000...could be an oldie but goodie from the 50's, a hair band from the 80's, or a jam I grew up with in the 90's
Fist-pump Friday - Jersey Shore style, Its time to get the weekend started

Mellow Monday:

Waiting to Cycle

To be honest (and this makes me really sad), I have not ridden my bike since the New England Season Opener...almost two weeks ago! I have been out of town in Florida for most of the time, thus I have had zero access to my bike. I had planned to make up for it this morning by going for a 40ish mile bike ride this morning, but my brakes are rubbing against my front wheel. The good news is that the hubby is coming home over lunch to fix it, but the sad news is that its supposed to rain (again) this afternoon (praying it holds off) and its just that much longer I have to wait to ride. I miss riding so much. And I still haven't gotten to try out my new cycling kit. I really am a lame excuse for a cyclist. How ever will I be crit worthy? (Sorry, I've been reading Pride & Prejudice)

I participated in #bikeschool last night for the first time. It was so inspiring to hear from so many cyclists...or maybe it just made me miss my bike even more. I highly recommend it for cyclists of all levels. I did come to the realization that although triathlons are fairly evenly balanced between female and male participants, cycling is still fairly male dominated. I feel like with the growing popularity of triathlons that there would be some carry over to cycling, but I guess not. I'm still sad I wasn't able to participate in the BU cycling races this year (wasn't a full time student), but hopefully I'll be able to do some road races and such soon.

Fist Pump Friday:

Florida Vacay

A couple of months ago, I was pondering what I should get my mom for Mother's Day. I always seem to get her the same thing every year, so I was trying to think of something a little different, but nothing was coming to me. I started remembering how I haven't been home for Mother's Day since high school and how nice it would be to go home for Mother's Day. I checked my schedule to find that we had already planned a triathlon for that day, and I also had the hockey banquet the night before. And let's not forget that it was the weekend before finals week, so even if I didn't have obligations, I would still just end up studying all weekend. Then I checked my schedule for this past weekend. Absolutely no obligations. I was then sold on that fact that I would visit my mom for Mother's Day. It also made for a good excuse to get away from this terrible Boston weather (but no one could have expected it to be this bad at this time of year).

I left early Thursday morning (no seriously, 5AM flight...who does that?). Its usually hit or miss whether or not I can sleep on the plane. Sometimes, I fall asleep before I get to zero when counting backwards from ten. Other times, I don't think they put enough anesthesia in the air, which is what I was stuck with this time. I got a coffee in Charlotte to make sure I stayed awake during my layover, but it turned out to be a bad idea after not having coffee in nearly a month. I was wide awake until midnight!

My aunt picked me up in Gainesville and dropped me off at my parents house. I tried to nap, but was just too awake, so I went for a run at 2PM instead. I always forget why I don't want to live in Florida until I run outside and then I remember. I ran 1.5 miles and felt like I was going to die. I went back home and immediately fell face first into the pool. Although, that was the same temperature as bath water so it wasn't much relief at all. My aunt and uncle took me out to dinner at BJ's for my graduation present. They also gave me a lovely pair of Swarovski earrings (picture to come soon). Also that night, my dad and I stayed up late watching Game 7 of the San Jose vs. Detroit series (yeah, Sharks!).

On Friday, I went for a run in the morning with my mom. The temperature was much more tolerable. We went to lunch at Sabore which is a Caribbean restaurant. My mom scheduled us for a spa appointment for the afternoon as my graduation present. We got a deep tissue massage and a mani/pedi with ice cream.

Saturday morning, my mom and I ran a "5K". Well, it was supposed to be a 5K, but the instructions that were given the runners turned it into a 1.8 mile run. Apparently, we were supposed to go around the loop three times, but they told us specifically twice. Even the course marshalls were saying that it was only two loops. Imagine my surprise when I saw the clock as I finished. Best 5K time ever! I was ok with it though. It was getting pretty hot already and I'm not sure I could have kept the pace for the rest of the race. I did the 1.8mi in 13:59 and won my age group.

We then headed up to Amelia Island where my aunt and uncle own a condo on the beach. Unfortunately, as soon as we got there, this happened...

Somehow, storms on the coast just look so much worse

This is not in black and white, its just that dark

Waited just a tad too long? Its not like you couldn't see the clouds coming

The wind was so strong, you can see it blowing water off the ocean

Yeah, it was cutting into my beach time. It stormed until dinner time which was good timing because I was going out with my mom, my friend Brittany from undergrad and her date. We had dinner in Jacksonville at Caribbee Key which was delightful. We then went to a martini bar afterwards. It was nice to catch up with my friend and finally meet her boyfriend. Of course, as we were driving back to the condo, it started to rain again. Bah, humbug.

Fortunately, Sunday morning welcomed us with cool weather and the sun.

I had a great 7 mile run along the beach. And then finally it was beach time. We spent all day at the beach and I got some sun. Thanks to the spray sunscreen I was using, I have white circles on my reg legs. I'm trying to start a new tanning fad, crop circles. I tried to stay up late enough that night to watch the San Jose vs. Vancouver game, but I was passed out by 10PM.

My mom and dad had work on Monday, so I had the house to myself. I went for a hike that morning and then went with my aunt to check on her chocolate shop in Trenton, FL. Then we went to TCBY for dessert (as if we didn't have enough free chocolate samples). My dad got home shortly after my aunt dropped me off, so we went for a Tour de Gainesville bike ride. I had the pleasure of using my mom's bike from the 80's, you know the kind with the shifters on the drop bar? I never realized how many cow farms there are in Florida (or how many rednecks there are).
Just a few pics from my hike

Spanish moss

Another thing I learned this weekend, armadillos live in Florida. Just thought you should know.

Throwback Thursday:

More Gifts and Western Wednesday

Monday was a crazy gift receiving day. I finally got my BU cycling kit. Ok, so I paid for that, but it felt like a gift after waiting for it for so long. We then had our going away picnic for seniors and graduating GA's. I received a watch from the athletic training department and a picture of the senior class from the senior class.

I was going to test drive it today with a 30mi ride,
but the weatherman was wrong and its pouring rain
instead of being sunshiney.

And as if I did not get enough swag from the Frozen Four, I got even more.

Hoodie (made out of Under Armor type material)

Sweatshirt blanket

I did struggle just a little bit trying to walk home with all of that.

And finally, last night I complete my one and only final for the semester, marking the end of my graduate school career and my school career in general (at least for now, but I don't plan on going back). I'm so excited. When you're in high school, it feels like this moment will never get here. It is so weird too, because I don't remember what life is like without school. The last time I didn't have to go to school was before pre-school. Although, I think I'm going to adjust just fine.

Western Wednesday:

Weekend Recap: May 6-8, 2011Va

On Friday, I got the call from my supervisor saying that it would be my last mandatory day of work. I will still be coming in for a little bit every other day to help wrap up the rehabs that I am coordinating. It feels good to know that its smooth sailing from now until graduation.

Following work, we (my co-workers and I) went to a party at Regina Pizzeria for the graduating athletic training students. Its a party to celebrate their passing over from students to our colleagues. Its pretty much we take the seniors out and buy them food and bevies. Then our bosses go home, and we buy them a lot more bevies. Knowing I had a race coming up, I personally stayed away from the bevies and went home when the bosses left. I was really struggling watching everyone else throwing back the brewskies while I sat there sipping my H2O.

I came home and watched the end of the Bruins game (swept those Flyers). It was good revenge after last year's result (lost the series after leading it 3-0).

On Saturday, Ben and I hung out and relaxed. I probably should have spent some time studying for my final, but yeah, didn't happen. We also took a dip in the Mystic Valley River Lake Pond Dam Ocean...whatever its called these days. I hate cold water, if you didn't gather that from my NE Season Opener Race Report.

Saturday night, we attended the women's ice hockey banquet. It was held on the 9th floor of the SMG building at BU. It was like your stereotypical Ivy school room where everything is ornate, wooden, and there are paintings of famous persons associated with the school in the past. It was so nice to see all the girls together one last time. The dinner was also fabulous. They started with a salad with balsalmic vinigarette and a roll. For dinner, we had roasted chicken in a lemon lime sauce and roasted potatoes. Finally, for dessert there was a small chocolate cake topped with fudge, strawberries and whipped cream. Perfect night before race meal, in my opinion. The coaches honored the student athletes by awarding them with various awards (MVP, Unsung hero, Spirit Award, etc.) and of course they announced next year's captain and alternate captains. I'm so proud of these girls and what they accomplished this year, and I know they will do amazing things next year. I just wish I could be there for it. They also acknowledged Jenn (my supervisor) and me by giving us a framed picture of the team and flowers.

Sunday morning, as you may already know from yesterday's post, we participated in the New England Season Opener Sprint triathlon where I shaved 18 minutes off of my time from last year. Following races, we have a tradition of stopping at a mall on the way home to walk off some of the effects of the race from our legs. We stopped at the Natick mall, which we have never been to before. We got our free monthly Godiva truffle, walked around for a while and headed home. We showered and tried to nap, but it turned out we were just physically tired, not ready for bed tired. We spent the rest of the day lounging around home and watching the San Jose Sharks let the Red Wings win. I did do some studying during intermission, but I think it was a grand total of 30 minutes. Really though, today I am nipping this in the butt and studying. My final is tomorrow at 4PM. I just can't wait for it to be over so I can finally say I'm done with school.

Mellow/Mumford Monday:

New England Season Opener: Round Two

A year ago at this very race, I participated in my first ever triathlon. A year ago at this very race, I almost participated in my last ever triathlon. Due to poor weather conditions, I almost pulled myself out of the swim, only to find out, much to my shivery dismay, that the rescue boat had sunk. I had no choice, but to finish the swim. Being an above average cyclist and a pretty strong runner, it only made sense for me to finish the race. Going into the race, I felt like a child who knows no fear, but I came out extremely shaken and with a big chip of confidence missing.

My final times for last year were:
Swim: 25:33
T1: 3:51
Bike: 44:28
T2: 2:00
Run: 27:02
Total: 1:42:52
AG: 16/16,  OA: 199/208

We got up at 5:45AM in order to drive down to Hopkinton. We had most of our stuff packed up the night before, so it was just last minute preparations and breakfast eating that needed to get done. I had an English muffin with peanut butter. I get so nervous before races that I have a hard time eating anything at all, but I have learned how to rise above and force feed myself at least a little something. I know I'll be the better for it in the end. We got to the park at 7:20AM, picked up our packets and set up in transition. Last pee was at 8:10AM as I wanted to get a dip in the water before the race to help myself to get acclimated to the chilly temperature. Ben and I took about a five minute dip at 8:30 and then reported back to transition for the "mandatory" athlete meeting at 8:45AM. The duathlon started promptly at 9AM and we started shortly after. I was in the second wave, so I didn't have to wait very long (one of the pro's of being in the F20-24 group).

Swim (400yd):
This year's race went a lot better, although I'm not sure the water was that much warmer. It definitely wasn't any warmer than 60 degrees (if it was that). I have issues when it comes to water. I'm fine (other than going numb) with everything from my neck down being in the water, but as soon as my face goes in, I start gasping. It takes me forever to acclimate to it. It was part of the reason why I did so poorly in last year's race. I was glad I did the pre-race acclimatization, but it still took me almost 100 yards to get my breathing down. Fortunately, I made it almost all of the way to the end of the swim before the speedsters in wave 3 started passing me. Trust me, there is nothing like having another swimmer hot on your heels (then calves, then thighs, then lower back) to light a fire under your but and get to swimming. Actually, it was shallow enough to touch bottom by that point so I just touched down and walked the rest of the way out. P.S. For all those who care, the swim was a point to point with an in water start (which was a first for me). There is nothing like treading water for a couple minutes before swimming.
Time: 14:11 (11:22 faster than last year!)

I came more prepared for this year's swim by wearing neoprene booties in addition to my wetsuit. However, it made it more difficult to get the whole kit and kaboodle off, so my T1 was a tad slow.
Time: 3:10 (41 seconds faster than last year)

Bike (10mi):
The bike started and ended on low notes. As I was getting on my bike to start my ride, I push down on my pedal only to find zero resistance. I look down and see that my chain had come off (probably in transition on those stupid racks). Before today, I had never had to and never learned how to put a chain back on, but it was pretty easy to figure out and I got it back on in less than 30 seconds. There is was nothing particularly exciting about the course other than it was extremely hilly for a 10 mile race. I knew what to expect after participating in this race last year, but I still agree with those who mentioned afterwards that it would make a good training course, but it makes for a terrible race course, especially when its that short. It was also my first race using my aero bars. Definitely need to get them readjusted. I like how much more comfortable they are instead of putting the weight through my hands. Most importantly I feel and look fast using them.  I only used them sporadically throughout the course as there were a lot of frost heaves (crashing this early in the season would not be prudent) and I had to shift frequently for the hills. The end of the bike finished with a crash despite my attempts to avoid it. Fortunately, my bike crashes involve me traveling at 5mph or less, or in this case, not even on the bike. I was running the bike into transition, one hand on the handlebars and the other doing its usual running swing. Somehow, the bike started to tip away from me causing the wheels to hit me and knock my legs out from underneath me. You never realize how many sharp parts or awkward angles are on a bike until you are lying on top of it. I immediately hopped back up to reassure the "ooo"-ing and "ouch"-ing crowd and continued on to transition.
Time: 40:55 (3:33 faster than last year)

I check to make sure I have all body parts still attached and that they're not profusely bleeding. Yup, looked good. Grabbed my visor and pre-run Gu and I was off.
Time: 1:13 (47 seconds faster than last year)

Arm: Flesh Wound

Leg: Giant bruise (not that visible here, but hurts like something that rhymes with duck)
and flesh wound
Hand: Extremely bad bruise (so...much...pain! Glad I was done with the  bike)
and more Flesh Wound

Run (5K):
As if running right after biking wasn't bad enough, they put transition at the bottom of a ginormous hill. As I'm running up, I kept thinking "I knew this race would be rusty, but I didn't think I would be this bad. This is horrible. I'm not sure I can do this. I can't...move...my legs!" And then as they always say, what goes up must come down. I started feeling much better as I pretty much galloped down that ginormous hill. I made it to mile 1 in a speedy 8 minutes (well, speedy for me in a triathlon anyways). I didn't see the mile 2 marker, although apparently there was one, but I felt like I was keeping up the pace fairly well and fairly easily. My favorite distance races are those that despite the fact that you have had to traverse that much land to come to the end, you are still neck and neck with another competitor. I like when you really have to dig deep and find something, ANYTHING!, to get yourself to kick it into another gear. I have had a lot of practice sprinting at the end of a race in high school cross country. I had to put it to practice in today's race. With all of my running experience, I almost always win those sprints as I know just when to kick it (or maybe I'm just too damn competitive). This was one of the closest sprints, but I barely pulled it off.
Time: 25:23 (1:39 faster than last year)

Total Time: 1:24:50 (18:02 faster than last year!!!!)
Definitely pleased times a million with that time.

AG Place: 11/17
This was my fifth triathlon. In all four of my races last year, I beat a total of 1 person in my age group. Take that 2011 season! It seems my change in race goals from "just finish" to "beat somebody" actually worked.
OA Place: 261/366

Oh, and Happy Mother's Day, Mom!

Saturday's Song of the Week

In my short career as an amateur triathlete, I have met many athletes of many different experience levels. I rarely get discouraged by the training aspect of triathlons, but some of the personalities of the triathletes I have met has really frustrated me (and to use some French, pissed me off). Obviously, its not true of everyone, but a good many of them are what my hubby refers to as Type A personalities. I call them intentionally helpful, but accidentally ignorant. They say there is only one sure fire way to do everything and you, yes you, must do everything exactly as they do it or you will never succeed as a triathlete. You must eat certain things. You must train a certain way. You must fit the triathlete physique. I know they are only trying to help others experience the same success that they have, but they chronically forget that there isn't always one way to do something. They forget or don't realize that what works for them doesn't always work for others. And a lot of the "advice" that I have gotten is just regurgitated information from some "get better now" company, and they know nothing about it other than "I must wear compression socks to run 4 minute miles". Initially, I was taking all the advice I could get as a newbie, but now I'm just getting sick and tired of being told what to do. Half of the stuff you are telling me to do doesn't work (scientifically proven) and the other half doesn't work for me (I can't eat a pizza in the middle of a marathon).

So I dedicate the song of the week to all of you Type A triathletes. I like this song because Sara Bareilles is an amazing pianist, and the video is pretty awesome too. I like how the broke the video up into smaller parts so you are watching a couple different things at once. The lyrics state exactly how I feel...

"You've got opinions, man
We're all entitle to 'em
But I never asked...
You sound so innocent
All full of good intent
Swear you know best...
Who died and made you king of anything?"

Weekend Recap

Going into the weekend, I wasn't expecting it to be much (other than the royal wedding). Man did that change.

First, I LOVED the wedding. If I watched another (ie. Harry's), I probably wouldn't get up as early to see the guests arriving. I don't regret doing it the first time, but its kind of a one and done kinda thing for me. It was interesting see the ceremony that is the arrival of the royals. Kate's dress was gorgeous. It was royal and elegant, without being overdone. I liked how well it looked against the red walls of the palace.

My favorite moment of the wedding was this (probably not anyone else's favorite moment, but I thought it was cute).

My scones came out amazing. I was kinda disappointed because they got chewy and stale by the afternoon (still tasted good), but my co-workers still enjoyed them. My nieces are coming to visit in three weeks for my graduation, and my one niece wants me to make them again for her. I'll probably try to experiment by adding some mix-ins.

The weekend ended with some of the most talked about news. As I was about to get ready for bed, my husband's cousin tweeted that the President was about to make an announcement about an unknown topic. We speculated that it was something about Libya, or possibly something domestic like the economy. When it was announced that it was an international issue that was NOT Libya, we had no idea what it could be. Before it even started to leak out what the true topic was, Ben said, "They killed Bin Laden. It has to be that. What else would it be? They wouldn't make a top secret announcement on Sunday night if it wasn't important."

As happy as I am that he is dead, I don't think we are anywhere near seeing the end of terrorism. Al Qaeda is such a huge organization, that killing one person hardly makes a dent. Sure, he is the name and face of Al Qaeda, and he was the man that started it all, but I think his death will only fan the flames that much more. I am glad, though, that those who lost loved ones in 9/11 can finally have some kind of closure.

I am flying down to Florida next Thursday to visit my parents. It should be interesting to see what security will be like. It will only be 1 1/2weeks after Bin Laden's death and I will be flying out of Logan airport which is where the two flights that crashed into the WTC's departed from. I'm only assuming that means extra security. Anyways, I have plans for a spa day with my mom, as well as a 5K and some much needed beach time. Can't wait!