Thursday, July 31, 2008

No Ironman for me this year

I’ve been pretty quiet since early June. This is for two reasons: I’ve been busy as [insert bucolic simile here]. In fact, I’ve never been busier—not so much in terms of hours worked, but in terms of Things to Do. I could talk about all the travel and the conference calls and the deliverables, but, let’s face it, the work is generally interesting and satisfying, and I’m fairly well compensated, and it should pay off in the medium and long term.

The other reason is that my training for Ironman Wisconsin has been in a death spiral. I’ve never achieved consistency (work and travel; see above), and I’ve become progressively more tired. Talking today, my coach said this “shone through” in my reports lately. I’m beat. Yesterday I swam less than a mile and did an easy three-mile walk with my daughter, granddaughter, and daughter’s dog—and was wiped—I had to sleep ten hours to recover! None of my work-outs has been good, and some gawdawful—2- and 2½-hour death marches. I meet all the symptoms for overtraining even though my volume numbers, looked at in isolation, don’t justify it. Between work and everything else, I’m not recovering (that’s my coach’s view).

This week it all came together. I’m on “vacation”, spending time with my 12-year-old granddaughter. We’re going away for a three-day cycling weekend on Friday, but I’m barely prepared, which means I’ve been spending time making lists and checking drawers and boxes. In addition, I’ve been working. My various projects are in such high-maintenance phases right now that I’ve basically been working full time, especially on conference calls. And I’m still delinquent enough on two of them that it’s reached Director level (never a good thing). For most of the last three days I’ve left Andie to sit in the living room, IM-ing with her friends and watching TV. When we went out for a walk with my daughter (no relation to Andie, who’s technically a stepgranddaughter) and my daughter’s eight-month-old golden retriever, it was obvious Andie needed some activity. She was chatty, skippy, elated.

So, combined with all my tiredness, and realizing I was only 38 days to IM Wisconsin, I decided to call it quits. I discussed it with Monado briefly this morning and then wrote what I call a “novel” for my coach, and he called me later and we discussed. He’s on side—no trying to talk me into doing it.

The general plan is that I’ll “unload” now, we’ll aim for some of the fall running races, and then start building again over the winter. I’m very happy with this decision.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


No picture for this post.

My mother died on December 13, 1987, aged 54 years, 9 months, & 27 days - 20,023 days from her birth in February 1933.

I knew I was approaching the age she was when she died. I do wonder why this floated to the top of my mind—I hadn’t been counting or anything.

But yesterday I did the calculation: I was 20,024 days old, one day older than my mother was when she died. And today I am two days older.

Monado’s immediate comment when I told her was, “You’re free! You can do whatever you want!”

I’m not sure what I think or feel about this, but it feels important to me.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Victoria's Duathlon

I've posted my pictures from Victoria's Duathlon, which occurred on Victoria Day weekend, May 19th.

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Wednesday, July 02, 2008

A Dominion Day + 1 surprise from WestJet

At 5:24 p.m. Eastern Time (Z-4), WestJet sent me this e-mail:
Starting Thursday, July 3, 2008, WestJet will be implementing changes to our checked baggage weight allowance. The baggage weight allowance will be reduced from 60 lb (27 kg) to 50 lb (23 kg). This change to our baggage allowance will apply to all flights taken after July 3, 2008.
What’s odd about this is that I’m in the middle of a round trip. In other words, I packed and flew yesterday (July 1), and am scheduled to return, via WestJet, on Saturday, July 5. If I’d packed according to the old 60-lb limit, what would I do?

The American airlines that have adopted stricter baggage rules are only applying to them flights booked from a certain date. It’s seems a little unfair of WestJet to apply a new rule in effect retroactively.

Fortunately, my one bag, which I checked only because I’d forgotten not to take my Swiss Army knife with me, is well under 50 lb. But still …

On the athletic front, had a Coach-is-trying-to-kill-me run when I got to my hotel yesterday—a 45-minute run with no fewer than 4 x 3 minutes at 5-km pace, in my case with my HR touching 170! Phew!

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