My First Duathlon!

Portland Tri is coming up on Sunday. I have struggled with motivation as of late. Which, as it turns out, was a good thing. I suffered a mild strain or sprain in my ankle at the Swim Across Suttle. I had one really good week of training since then but every time I run or bike my ankle hurts so bad I can almost not walk. The pain dies down after a few days but as soon as I exercise on it, it’s back. I don’t know how swimming effects it because I have had absolutely no interest in swimming since I finished dead last in a wetsuit-choking, rash all over my legs experience at Suttle Lake. I swam once since then. Again, a good thing.. because the swim portion of Portland Tri got canceled and the race is now a duathlon!

Willamette River is not known for clean water. But it’s tested weekly and has been safe up until this week when a thick green scum floated in. Test results were inconclusive, which is a few steps better than unsafe, but they decided not to risk it. I am so incredibly relieved. I can’t help but acknowledge God had a hand in this. Ok. Let’s not blame Him for the algae. Let’s thank him for the lack of motivation I’ve had for the water. So I had no training to go to waste :-).

Very much looking forward to being back in a climate that is more suitable for me. Humidity, please return. Sea level, I love you. This race has now eliminated the one leg I would struggle with most. Now if my ankle can hold up.. It should be ok.

I’m still planning to dress like Waldo, so stay tuned for pictures! And I am spending some time with my friend Harmony and her husband so I am super excited!

And.. What’s more? I have a $70 gift card to spend at a gear store. I won the gift card at a triathlon this weekend 2 years ago. I came in 2nd for women. I’m planning to buy a hammock! And I have a $25 gift card to use at Panera Bread that my mom gave me for Christmas. I haven’t seen a Panera since I moved to Bend! So it’s kind of exciting to have spending money without spending actual money :-)

So this Sunday I will race in my first duathlon. 1 mile run, 25 mile bike, 10k (6.2 mile run). Very excited.

No wetsuit to haggle with!

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Because the Sex is Good

Living in a town because it’s a cool town, even though you can’t find a fulfilling and sustainable career, is like staying in a relationship, even though it is unhealthy and does not nourish your soul, because the sex is good.

I need more than that.

Today marks my two-year anniversary at work. I have never held a full-time, permanent job for two years. I have worked for companies for more than two years but not a continuous, 40-hour work week for 104 weeks straight.

There wasn’t a card, a note of appreciation, not even a bouquet of hydrangeas and sunflowers on my desk. Not even a huge cake that everyone could enjoy.

What have I learned from this?

There is nothing to be gained from living in misery. Sure, I learned lessons. I am more resilient now. I am stronger. I am wiser. I don’t ever want to be in a relationship just because the sex is good. And if I ever marry someone who can’t remember important dates – like my birthday which I give ample notice about – P.S. It’s in 28 days – I might leave him while he is sleeping.

I’ve had enough mental anguish, sticking around because someone is going through extreme loss (marriage ending, brother dying from cancer) and having that mean nothing. Add to that working for two years, doing good work despite hating the actual job. Showing up. Showing up with a good attitude, even if it’s fake.

In the end, none of that means a damn thing.

I already knew this .. But you gotta live a life of value and virtue. Choose the person and people you spend it with wisely. Choose the people you give your time and energy to wisely. It doesn’t matter if they exchange a paycheck for your time. It matters that you are appreciated. Because when it comes down to it, it’s not the sex that matters in a relationship, it’s knowing you are loved and that person has your back. Not just now. But forever.

Call me vain. I don’t care. But today, more than any other day, I could use some appreciation.

A Different Person Within

I’m a different person than I was when I moved here over two and a half years ago. I reflected on this recently so I could try to understand why I changed so dramatically and how I could make strides toward reversing some of those changes.

Maybe it was because I had nothing to lose. That’s not true. In fact I almost lost my car. Maybe it’s because I had so much to gain. I don’t know.

Maybe I have inadvertently associated change with big risk and the risks I took back then almost caused me to lose everything I did have.

I have more to lose now. A dog I love. A car I need. A place to live. Health insurance. Friendships.

I am in a place in life that is going to require that I give up something, or many things, in order to gain. And my judgement has been clouded by fear of the unknown. I don’t want to look back with regrets. So now I am forced to choose between regrets which are inevitable.

At different points, life has been challenging. But I am in a place that is unfamiliar to me. And when I think about it, I can’t help the tears that form.

I realize I am being extremely vague. I have to be. This is where I am in my life right now. Choose left or choose right. Or continue standing still.

For the Love of her Face

It was about this time last year that I was deep in thought debating whether or not to get a dog. Everything felt so new. Puppy proofing. Water bowls. Kibble. Cans of pumpkin. Puppy shampoo. Leashes. Collars. Harnesses. Toys. Blankets. Kennels.

Andi joined my life on October 3rd. It was love at first sight and it’s definitely love now. I love her little face.

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I wish she would stop sleeping under my bed and join me for some snuggle time.. But my sweet little creature is loving her downstairs apartment under-the-bed-den, and I just really want her to be happy.

My love bug with the cutest little face.

Top Secret

This weekend I was inspired to make a baby quilt. And that’s all I’m going to say about that, for now. Will spill the beans soon.

I got the inspiration from this blog post by Wombat Quilts:

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So I went to QuiltWorks about bought a yard of Kona Coal and two bike prints in fat quarters and decided to use up some of my scraps for the rest.

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It was a slow start but I woke up Sunday and finished it. Well, almost. I just need to finish quilting and bind it.

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There were a few interruptions but mostly I needed a day to let my creative/industrious side to flourish. Also, there was a point when I almost quit. So glad I didn’t. I love the way it is turning out!

I Make Stuff Up

This weekend I really needed some Katy time. Freedom to sleep in, to spend money on myself, to skip a workout if I felt like it, to cook, to eat, to paint nails, do laundry, mow grass, and catch up with my own Honey Do lists.

Wow, did I have a great weekend. It’s not a three-day weekend, and that’s OK for now. Someday I’ll have a job that honors federal holidays. For now I suppose I should just be happy I have a job.

Anyway.

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Andi had to go back to the vet and this time they started her on prednisone for her flea bites which have yet to clear up. She is apparently highly allergic. So far the prednisone has not made a difference. Poor baby.

I took myself out for sushi, I bought a new bra from Victoria’s Secret, I shopped at Old Mill District and I just let go of stress and worry and enjoyed myself. I didn’t count every calorie I ate and I didn’t count every dollar I spent. And it was good.

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I got my handlebar tape changed over from zebra print to purple. I love the purple.

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I painted my nails a pretty pink with one sparkle on each hand. I love having pretty nails and so glad I can do it myself.

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I made a big pot of minestrone soup and it’s delicious. It tasted so good after my 27-mile bike ride. My bike ride was supposed to be 90 minutes with 25 of those minutes just above race pace. I did the hard push in the first half so it took me 15 minutes longer to get home, and I was (still am) pooped out. But the soup was a great recovery meal (x2).

I got my sewing area organized again and ready to start on my next quilting project. I found these orphan blocks which will need to be fostered out!

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On the agenda still remains.. A batch of pumpkin muffins. But since this is a weekend for myself, it might wait till tomorrow.. But boy, do I want one for breakfast tomorrow..

This was my weekend.

How was yours? I hope you get a 3-day weekend and that it’s full of good as well.

The Dork who swims with Wetsuit @ Local Pool

Yup, that was me. I had to. And I will do it again. After Sunday’s fiasco at the Swim Across Suttle, I knew it was time to figure out the wetsuit issue. The best way I knew how to do that was to eliminate all other factors that come with open water swimming. Sighting, other people, deep water, etc. I just needed the opportunity to swim a lap, make an adjustment, swim a few laps, make a few more adjustments. And so I swam like this for a half hour. I took a lot of breaks to make adjustments and in the end I swam 750m and really made progress with the suit.

Wetsuits are tricky. Each brand kind of has its own set of fit criteria. The brand I bought (Zoot) has a wide weight range for each size. Size, as I would learn, is much more dependent upon height than it is on weight in a Zoot wetsuit. The weight determines how much and where the buoyancy goes. So as soon as the Zoot rep assured me that my suit did in fact fit, I went into motion to figure out what went wrong on Sunday.

I woke up with hives that started at my hip and went down both legs to the knuckle on my big toe. It was itchy and uncomfortable. I did not take time to cinch up the wet suit the way I should have. And that’s where I went wrong.

Yesterday I decided that I definitely need some type of lubrication before pulling on the suit. Either BodyGlide or something else. I’ve read in books that some triathletes use Pam – yes, the cooking spray.

I have another 30-min swim scheduled for Friday. Not sure if I will use the pool or the river, but I do know that I need to swim with the wetsuit more often as I prepare these last few weeks before Portland Tri. It just has to happen.

It’s a smoky one out today. Ash is collecting on my chair in the backyard. A new fire must have broken out last night. The Central Oregon life.. Not sure how or if it will affect my ride tonight but I have a 60-min bike scheduled and I am really looking forward to getting out on my wheels. It may have to be on the trainer though.. Better than not at all.