now for something completely different…

now for something completely different…

Posted by on Mar 14, 2017 in Elise's Blog |

I’ve had some fun races since ITU World’s Championship in Cozumel last September. I did Heart of Cool trail 10K on my birthday (came in first overall!). SF to Napa RAGNAR with 11 other amazing woman (200 mile relay), no sleep for 30 hours but an amazing time. We took first in the woman’s masters division! MandaRUN ½ marathon, my Freeplay teammate (and coach) Stephanie took overall female win with me coming in 2nd with a PR of 1:30!! Double Duathlon where I realized doing a flying mount after run-bike-run wasn’t easy… apparently my brain turned off. It would have been a fun close race for first but because of my fall I came in 2nd overall female (pic above was pre-fall!). This Saturday I will be doing something completely different, a 50K trail race. It’s a run but really the word run should be in quotes. It’s a hike/walk/traverse/scramble as much as a run. I just recently read the rules for the race and twice they mention no whining. So I have my work cut out for me. Here are some of the things I’ve observed and learned while training for this race… When I start feeling fatigued I need to eat even if I’m not hungry. It works like a charm. Ticks are gross. Had a couple recently and now do bug spray before I hit the trails… spray for me & my dog. I think I’d rather have a tick bite then a mountain lion bite. Just an observation. A dog makes a great trail running partner especially when it’s hard to coordinate a run with friends. And helps keep mountain lions away… right? I love listening to music when I run. But when I’m out on the trails I sometimes turn off all music and soak in the beauty & sounds of nature. I have gotten used to running in soaking wet shoes & socks. Because it has happened on every training run I’ve done. Every. Single. One. I am sometimes afraid there might be a mountain lion stalking me. Sometimes. The best way to dry out shoes is removing the liners and sticking shoes and liners on the heater vent at home. When the family asks what the smell is I just point to the dog. My body wants to be done running at mile 18. So doing 31 miles (without whining) should be interesting. My dog is afraid of Oscar the Grouch. Yes I learned that trail running. My longest training trail run has been 23 miles. So doing 31 miles (without whining) should be interesting. Trail runners are a FUN group! I’ve met some of the greatest people. Trail runners like beer. I’m going to have a hard time not whining. Here’s to finishing 31 miles! Cheers! Elise...

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ITU Worlds Cozumel

Posted by on Oct 2, 2016 in Elise's Blog |

I am going to backtrack a bit before I start my Cozumel race story. Not many people know this but at the beginning of the year I didn’t want to do triathlons any more. I lost that inner drive that got me excited to train and race. I still trained, and I still raced, but my heart wasn’t in it. I kept thinking “after Cozumel I’m done.” I can’t say what made me feel this way but it showed a bit in my training and a bit in my racing. At least until Cozumel got closer. The Tahoe Triathlon I did in August I actually looked forward to, and during the race I told myself to look around and soak in the beauty and try to enjoy myself. Something that day changed my heart and my motivation. Then come Cozumel I was surrounded by amazing athletes from all over the world, and maybe because of that, or something unknown, but that passion came back! So much happened before the race: I made new friends from all over the country, walked in parade of nations, met sister Madonna, saw elites race (including gold medalist Gwen Jorgensen), that I could write a few more blogs in addition to this race story. But for now I will stick to race day… 4:30 is when my alarm went off, well I should say when it was set to go off. I was awake every hour that night anxious for race day. So I wouldn’t wake my family I turned it off before it was set to go off and got out of bed. I previously made plans with a couple other athletes to meet at 5:30 to catch a shuttle to the race. I wanted some time before that to double check my race bag and get some food (and coffee!) in my system. Transition was set up according to age group, and within that according to your country. So it was really cool to be with all the other 40-44 Team USA woman that morning. There were 10 of us and many of us joked that at least we’ll come in top 10 Team USA that day! After I felt all was set to go I walked the long T1 (swim to bike transition) portion to go check out the swim, and was lucky to run into my family. It was great seeing my kids and husband before I set off to swim. Before the first wave (group of racers, grouped by sex/age group) started the race announcer told us that there was a very strong current heading north-south and they needed to adjust the swim length from 1500m to roughly 1250-1300m. As I watched the first couple of waves go you could tell, they would start fast heading south for 300m, turn the series of 3 buoys to start heading North, then they looked...

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Don’t let me, don’t let me, don’t let me down

Don’t let me, don’t let me, don’t let me down

Posted by on Sep 8, 2016 in Elise's Blog |

My kids recently asked me to find a song for them on Spotify, Don’t Let Me Down (by The Chainsmokers). It is a song that turns out to be quite catchy and one the kids and I like to dance to (my poor husband, he isn’t a fan). So during the Tahoe Triathlon the song was stuck in my head, especially during the run. Which was very appropriate because I was basically singing it to my body, hoping it wouldn’t break down on me. Speaking of my race…. Since this was a last minute decision to race we didn’t have a place to stay Saturday night. So I thought logically “it’s just Tahoe, I can go the morning of.” Well it turns out it is a two-ish hour drive to Sugar Pine State Park and morning check-in for this race was between 5:30-6:00am! Which meant we were going to need to get up at 3:00am, leave by 3:30am, dragging our two kids along. I mean, what could go wrong? But we did it and everyone got in the car without complaining and promptly back fell asleep (including me! nice to have hubby driving). Just don’t ask about later that day, not quite as smooth. But that’s a different story. I checked in and set-up transition in the dark. All the smart athletes had headlamps, but since apparently I’m not one of those I just felt around in the dark and did my best to set out all my stuff. Transition was on a grassy area up high above the water. I was told that if I’m cold coming out of the water, the extremely steep hill up to the bike will warm me up. Great. The swim, words can hardly describe the beauty of the swim. Lake Tahoe is the most crystal clear water you’ll ever swim in. When I swam to the first buoy I could see the long rope holding it to the ground, I didn’t have to lift my head to turn around the buoy… in fact I almost dove under the buoy! Which is legal to do if you go around the rope holding it, but I didn’t want to take any chances that the race officials might think I was cutting the course so I stayed on the surface. I was alone for the majority of the swim except when passing swimmers from earlier waves. After rounding the 2nd to last buoy there was an enormous boulder I swam over, it felt like I was flying. So beautiful. Transition was steep running up steps then a steep grassy knoll to our bikes. My husband yells out “Remember this is a training race!!” … I have ITU World Championships coming up and I think he really didn’t want me to push too hard and hurt myself. He knows me well, I made sure to be careful!  Getting on my...

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Folsom International Triathlon Race Story

Posted by on Jun 14, 2016 in Elise's Blog |

I have been struggling with what to write for this race story. I wasn’t feeling 100% coming into the race, both my kids had a nasty stomach virus days before. I wasn’t completely sick like them, but I also wasn’t completely well. It was that horrible “Am I sick? Am I not?” limbo. I took a couple days off of training prior to the race and decided if I was throwing up race morning I wouldn’t race. I woke up that Sunday and wasn’t throwing up so I decided to race. Good times! I was actually super excited about so many of my friends, and teammates, racing that day that I was happy I’d be able to race. But not feeling 100% I wasn’t sure how well I would do. Here are my PROS and CONS of each leg. Swim PRO – 2nd swim wave, not my usual “old people go last” wave. CON – swim start was co-ed. Meaning a much more crowded swim. PRO – Co-ed is great practice for my big race in September where I’ll be starting in a big group of strong swimmers. PRO – There were little buoys & rope lines setup from crew (rowing) that helped me to the first distant buoy. Which was awesome because there was no seeing that distant yellow buoy with that bright rising yellow sun. CON – There weren’t little buoys & rope lines from crew to follow after rounding that 2nd buoy to the distant unseeable 3rd and final buoy. PRO – I soon spotted that distant unseeable 3rd yellow buoy and was swimming nice and straight towards it! CON – That turned out to be a kayaker wearing yellow, and she wasn’t near the buoy. Actual buoy was off to the right so I had to swim back out to make my final turn to shore. Bike PRO – I again nailed the flying mount! CON – I again didn’t nail the putting my shoes on after flying mount. CON – Photographer right where I didn’t nail putting my shoes on. PRO – Seeing friends out on the course helped me to continue to push strong. PRO – Course was relatively flat. I really enjoyed being out there on my bike. Run PRO – Really not any that I can think of. I didn’t pass out or die? I guess that’s always a bonus. CON – My right calf cramped off the bike, loosened up before leaving transition but my quads almost seized up and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to run. CON/PRO – I didn’t have a good run but I managed to keep moving forward. Finish PRO – Getting to the finish. PRO – My daughter running with me. PRO – My daughter putting the finisher’s medal around my neck. CON – Disappointment in my overall time. PRO – Still managed top step in my age group, and...

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Keep moving forward, my Auburn Triathlon race story

Keep moving forward, my Auburn Triathlon race story

Posted by on May 23, 2016 in Elise's Blog |

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”—Martin Luther King, Jr. That was me during the run portion of the Auburn Triathlon. I did manage to keep running, but just barely. I was definitely not flying. I just kept telling myself “move forward. One step at a time. Finish line gets closer with each step. Just keep moving forward.” I’ll back up a bit and start at the beginning. This was my 2nd year doing the Auburn International Triathlon, last year I won overall female and I was a bit nervous coming into this race with such high expectations. I knew I was stronger than last year (thanks to The Ranch Athletics) but I was pretty sure I wasn’t as fast as last year. I recently came back from a back injury and I didn’t have as as much speed work under my belt. But I know the course well since it’s right in my backyard. I was able to get a couple rides in on the bike course, and a run in on the run course, and I figured if I kept going in the right direction on the swim that would give me a couple extra minutes off of last year’s time (always a bonus to not go the wrong direction!). The swim: I stayed on course! But the course was set a bit long so my time ended up being the same (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it). At the start of the swim I bumped into my friend Flor a few times, wanting to say “sorry” but hard to do when swimming. Luckily that was just for a minute or so then the pack spread out. But, with us ladies being the last wave, I had to swim through some of the men from the wave ahead plus some of the long course athletes. A bit of zig-zagging around others while still trying to keep the straightest line possible to each turn buoy (aim for the middle of the buoy Chris & Jeff of Boost Swimming always say). At the end of the swim it bottlenecked to a narrow boat ramp and I had to wrestle my way in to get around a dock. With my time being slower than I expected (not realizing the course was long) I opted to not put shoes on for the ⅛ mile run to my bike, so I carried them to my bike. My wetsuit didn’t quick unzip like usual, then taking off my goggles while running I juggled my swim cap and eventually dropped it, and then my timing chip fell off when I pulled my wetsuit off. I had to string it back on my ankle timing strap (and take the safety pin off that was...

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Icebreaker Race Recap

Icebreaker Race Recap

Posted by on Apr 25, 2016 in Elise's Blog |

A picture says a 1000 words. So here are a few thousand words from my recent TBF Icebreaker Triathlon that took place April 16… If possible I always check the line for the swim finish. Good to know if sight buoys (ones you can go on either side of) are off to one side or another instead of in a straight line from the final turn buoy. This time the sight buoy was off to the outside so I was glad I checked. My hubby took this photo and had no idea what I was doing. But he just rolls with it and takes pictures anyway.   My hubby takes good pictures! The water was cold cold cold. I don’t like cold water. Glad it was just a ½ mile swim!   In transition 1 multitasking… stepping out of my wetsuit while I put my helmet & glasses on. Anything to help me be a tad bit faster is a bonus.   I rubber banded my shoes to my bike for a flying mount, first time I did it in a race and it went well! aka I didn’t fall over. (In case you are wondering the bands break once you start pedaling.) I also put a few chews up on my top tube. Just in case I get hungry 🙂   Flying dismount coming into transition 2. Came in a little fast but stayed upright so all’s good! Notice the FLUiD tent? They rock.   This photo makes me laugh, it’s so flattering I had to put it in. Eating the last chew from my bike while heading out for the run. I put on glasses, visor, & number while running out of transition. Again anything that will make me faster is bonus!   My watch wasn’t working right so I had no idea what mile I was at, or what pace I was running, or my overall time, or my run time, or if my feet would ever thaw out from the cold swim, or why I thought triathlons were a good idea. I thought this was mile 2. It was closer to mile 1. Cue the sad violin.   Ask any athlete and I’m pretty sure they’d say this is the best part of a race, the FINISH!! Started my season off with SacTown 5K on April 3, then this Icebreaker triathlon April 16th, next up is the Auburn Triathlon May 15th! Hard to believe the race season is now in full swing but it is!! Until then…...

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