Man, oh man. I am SO far behind on blog posts. Life has been a bit of a whirlwind and the week that I said “see you later” to Lloyd was basically a week where I ate my feelings and cried. I pulled myself together, and while I’m still sad, I’ve been refocusing on the good stuff I have going on. And there is a lot. So, here’s a little currently post while I figure out what else needs to be written.
Training. I’ve been swimming and cycling a bunch. My hamstring was really bothering, to the point of injury, so I shut down running for two weeks. I did a couple of short runs this week and while my hamstrings are tight, they aren’t as bad. I think it may be a bike fit thing as both are tight and the bike is what I’ve increased the most in the last few months. I got a re-fit yesterday so we’ll see how that goes. On the plus side, I’m seeing improvement and really beginning to understand training with power. Also, I think I just wasn’t really gearing properly before. Like at all. And yes, during my ironman. Yikes.
Racing. As it stands I really only two multisport events on the calendar for the fall. My 70.3 and an aquathlon. I was waiting for this hamstring to heal to sign up for an olympic distance event next month. I better get to it.
Coaching. Coaching is still going really well! I am learning so much from Coaches Jon, Nick and Mason. I truly value what Tribal has formed as it’s great to have a collective of coaches to bounce ideas off of and learn from. I can’t wait to watch the Tribe grow. #TribePride
Summer Travel. I’ve FINALLY made plans to go visit the Redhead and Spike and the babies in Chicago next month. Hoping that the hammy is good by then as we are more than likely going to find a race. And of course, Spike and I will eat a bunch of food while the Redhead watches in bemused disgust. In addition to Chicago, the S.O. and I have a BIG trip planned in August. We are heading to Germany!
Reading. I’ve recently come to know of this magical place where you can go and borrow books for free! It’s called the library. And yes, I realize I am late to the game on this I just never got my act together to go get a card. I finally did and now I’m a library going machine! I just finished The Woman in Cabin 10 (meh) and picked up The Nightingale. I still need to finish In the Kingdom of Ice, but I have a feeling it’s going to pick up very quickly. I want to add some triathlon/training books to my list. I’ll take any recommendations on those.
Podcasts. I’m still listening to Up & Vanished. I am really happy that Invisibilia is back! And I’m looking forward to another season of Someone Knows Something. I mostly listen to true crime, but I enjoy others here and there. S-Town was really good but I’m torn on it.
And that’s it for now! Hopefully I can get a write up on that 100 mile race I crewed for and maybe even a report for St Anthony’s or my 10 Mile Xterra race.
Oh! One more thing, I have a race discount you can use for Best Damn Race – any location! Use the code UNICORN to get $5 off. www.bestdamnrace.com. As a bonus, I will be there! Ha!
If you have been reading this blog for any amount of time, then you more than likely know about Lloyd.
Lloyd Doggler to be exact.
Lloyd and I found each other in the summer of 2001. I was 21 and he was approximately a year old (so mentally we were about the same age). We met at a Petsmart adoption where various little dogs were hanging out to find their forever homes. He was the only one in a crate not barking or losing his small doggie mind. I took one look at him in all of his shaggy glory and asked to see him.
Lloyd was plucked from his crate and as we both got down on the floor he walked over to where I was sitting cross legged, and as if that spot in the crook of my legs was meant especially for him, he climbed right in and sat down. That’s the moment I knew. He had picked me as much as I had picked him.
I picked him up from his foster home and I took him home to my parent’s house. I was staying with them for the summer before heading back to college in the fall. He was so shy! Several times he and I lay on the floor together while I fed him one piece of food at a time.
Previous to living with me Lloyd was a stray. His papers noted he was “timid.” And he was at first. He didn’t come when called and there were numerous occasions that first year or two where if he got outside he’d run and run and run. I chased him around my neighborhood more than once and a poor ex boyfriend chased him around a lake. I also remember one time he came upon a dead bird in the grass and decided it would make a lovely cologne. He immediately got a bath and I thought it was so funny.
He was timid with others for a time, but he became much more outgoing as he learned I wouldn’t allow anyone to even look at him sideways. He was always safe with me. I really wanted him to know that. He learned to come when called as it meant belly rubs, pats, and treats.
He also didn’t know how to bark. Until I stupidly “taught” him to speak. Oh boy, did he learn how to speak. He had an amazingly loud and big bark slash howl for a little dog. My friend Bill says it was one of his favorite things about Lloyd.
Lloyd stayed with many friends and family members over the years when I traveled or worked long hours. He hated to be alone but didn’t want to cuddle. He just liked knowing someone was there. Especially if that someone was me. When we were together, he never left my side. I sometimes felt badly when I was cleaning because he didn’t get to sit down as I went from room to room. I really don’t think he minded. He liked being with me as much as I liked being with him.
People loved Lloyd. All of his vets, groomers and sitters adored him. He was a great little dog with a sweet disposition and loved to play before he got into his senior years. He could tear up a stuffed toy with the best of them.
Toward the end he just didn’t have the quality of life that every dog should have so I had to make that tough decision. On the one hand, it was just awful to have to decide, but on the other, I knew he was ready. He was suffering and that hurt me more than anything.
Lloyd lived a good, long life. Obviously, with our pets it’s never long enough, but I’m really fortunate to have had him for as long as I did.
As you read this, if you have a pet, you are nodding in agreement with some of these general dog traits. They often choose us and want to be wherever we are. I’ve found myself wanting to hug other people’s dogs a lot lately, but it’s not quite the same. They aren’t my dog and I’m not their person. The hardest part is coming home to no wiggly butt and happy tail wagging. I’m not quite ready for another pet, but I know I will be eventually. I love animals and that’s not going away.
I just can’t imagine going through that heart wrenching day another time.
To those of you who sent cards and condolences, thank you. I know a lot of you loved him from the internet and he loved you right back.
RIP Lloyd Doggler
?/??2000 – 5/31/2017
We all know at this point that clothing has switched from active wear only while working out to active wear ALL THE TIME! It’s comfortable and easy to mix and match. Not to mention, the array of options has gotten to be amazing. Hence why I was stoked to receive an email about trying the brand HYLETE.
Here’s a little something about the brand:
“HYLETE is a performance apparel brand created for the modern athlete yet priced for everyday use. By working closely with everyday athletes, veterans, and gym owners, they’ve developed the ideal fitness apparel. With innovations such as their proprietary materials to their multiple length options, HYLETE stands out among their competitors. Better yet, they have a competitive edge in pricing since they cut out the middlemen by selling directly online.”
I was sent a pair of shorts and a tank in exchange for a post.* And ya’ll know I love a good pair of shorts! The shorts I received are the Serenium II flex-knit zip pocket 3″ in black. And the tank is the Accent II Quad-Blend Racer Tank.
I was a little bummed that the shorts didn’t have a liner, but I love how they fit and that they have plenty of pockets. The tank has pockets on both sides as well and I actually used them this morning at Tribal Multisport strength and conditioning to hold my band. (Better photo of shorts HERE and tank HERE.)
I was originally sent a size medium, but they were a little big so I was sent a small and they fit perfectly. The waistband is super comfortable and never felt like it was rubbing (I hate chafing!) and the relaxed leg opening was great for lunges and squats. I wore some athletic undies underneath and that worked like a charm.
This image is all of us in some stage of a monster walk! Sorry for all the band work photos. My assistant was working with one arm, the other is in a sling from a crash. Get well soon Erin!
This outfit will make it into heavy rotation at the gym and as a bathing suit cover up/casual wear. I love shorts that can slip on over a suit easily and these are really comfortable. I don’t feel like my thighs are being smooshed either and that’s always nice!
So what’s in it for you? I’m glad you asked. I’ve got a 40% off coupon for you! Use code HM4948 to shop and get 40% off! I’m personally eye-balling their sports bras. If they are as comfy as this outfit, count me in!
Happy shopping everyone!
*All opinions are my own. I wouldn’t lie to you. I like this brand, for real. But I did get the outfit in exchange for social shares and posts and yada yada yada. You know the drill. #ad #spon #allthatjazz
I know it’s the tenth. I also know I owe you all two race reports! Those are in the works. But first, my April stats and recap. It’s safe to say, tri training is back in full swing!
Run 84 miles
Bike 213 miles
Swim 11 miles
Strength & Conditioning 4 sessions
Races Bouchard Insurance 5K and St. Anthony’s Sprint Triathlon
Current Reads I am currently reading In The Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette. It’s very interesting and I don’t know why I keep being drawn to historical books about boats. I don’t even like boats! (And I doubt this book will help me warm to them…Pun Intended.)
Current Obsession Nada.
Current Song Wish I Knew You by The Revivalists.
Current Need More hours in the day! (Can this just be a given for every month? Ha!)
Current Triumph Getting my tri training joy back on. It’s not that I’m doing the training, it’s that I’m loving it and feel really good to be hitting it hard again.
Current Bain of My Existence Currently having some back and neck pain that I can only assume is from doing karate in my sleep. Ouch.
Current Goal Get my bike fitness back and improve upon it. I’m using the power meter and really trying to figure out how I can make my workouts the very best they can be.
Current Indulgence I did indulge in a trail race last weekend. That counts right?
Current Blessings New athletes! I’m stoked to be working with a few new athletes and help them reach their goals.
Current Excitement KEY WEST! Next week I’m headed to the Keys to help crew for my friend Rose as she tackles the Keys 100! Bring on the running, key lime pie, and boat drinks! (But not on an actual boat. See: Current Reads.)
I started this official coaching journey back in January of 2016. I began working with my dear friend Judy, who graciously allowed me to use her as a guinea pig. Fortunately, it went great and I didn’t break her. It helps that she’s supremely coachable and a great runner. So yeah, maybe that’s a little bit of cheating, but she did really help me hone my coaching skills to start. This was great, but I knew in order to further grow a coaching business and continue to gain knowledge, I would need some actual certifications.
Below, I’ll list my certifications in the order I received them and my thoughts on each one. Keep in mind, I spaced all of these out due to pricing and how/when they were scheduled.
USA Track and Field Level I Coaching I started with USATF for a few reasons, the first was that it was not super expensive ($240) and didn’t require I take any time off of work. I also wanted to get something sooner rather than later in the running specific area. While RRCA was top of my list for certifications there wasn’t one being offered at this time.
This two day course takes place on a Saturday and Sunday, which was perfect while I was working full time. It was very straight forward and the material was easily digested. The instructors had tons of years of experience and I enjoyed this course. The material on physiology was a great place to start as a new coach. The only downside here was the length of time spent on field events as I will never teach someone how to throw a javelin, discus, or shot put. (And lord help them if I do!) This is not to blame that on the course AT ALL, it’s a track and field course, but I do think if you are interested in just running, especially endurance running, maybe skip this one. The test wasn’t too tough and was all multiple choice, open book, online.
US Masters Swimming Level I and II Coaching As I continued on my learning journey I opted for this course next. It’s only one day – BONUS and it was also fairly affordable. I think this course is geared toward folks who already have a lot of swimming in their background. I wouldn’t take this if you are just starting out in the sport as I think there is a learning curve to this point. I didn’t find this course too difficult and while I did enjoy it, I don’t remember learning a whole lot from it. Not to say that I know everything about swimming, because obviously I don’t, but I feel as though I’ve learned a lot more just being mentored by the head coach at my pool and Coach Nick from Tribal Multisport. The test was also multiple choice and I think open book, but you took it right at the class and got your certificate the same day. This was the least costly ($180) and least time consuming of my certifications.
Road Runners Clubs of America Level I Coaching Working my way up the chain, in terms of cost and hours, the RRCA course is two full (I mean FULL) days at $325. I really enjoyed this course and appreciated that the one in my city was attended by lots of familiar faces. This course is really geared toward 5Ks and over and I think it’s very beneficial for running coaches. It was nice to see that some of the old school ideas I had learned when I started running (Never run the day before your long run! Ha!) have changed and are much more up to date than I had feared going in. There was an online multiple choice test that was a little bit tricky, but it was open book and I felt very prepared for it based on the course structure. The instructor was humorous and kept us interested. The group project was a nice way to break up the monotony of listening to an instructor all day.
USA Triathlon Level I Coaching This was my last certification course so it’s a bit fresher in my mind. This course was also a very FULL two days. At about $600 (which includes a background screening fee) and a pretty in depth application process (they require a resume) this was the most costly and time consuming of the certifications.
I’m glad I saved this course for last. I felt more prepared to sit and learn, and while I do think it’s a solid course, I didn’t feel quite as prepared for the test as I was in the previous courses. Maybe because I’m a newer triathlon coach, or maybe because the course isn’t really designed to help you pass the test. The test is online and open book, only we didn’t ever look at the book in the class. This was odd to me, but there is something to be said about not being spoon-fed answers ahead of time. The test has a multiple choice section, a short answer section, and a build custom training plans for a made up athlete section. The training plan build portion was tougher than I expected. All in all, I think this course is beneficial for new coaches and I’m glad I got the certification.
And there you have it. Will I keep all of them active? Probably not. But I love learning more about this sport and know there’s a lot more I still need to learn. These courses were a great reminder that some of our hard and fast rules can change and to be open minded about what’s out there. They were also a great reminder that I never want to go back to school full time, I’ll take my learning in two days at time thank-you-very-much. Ha!
Feel free to ask questions in the comments about any of them. Thanks for reading!