Sunday, April 27, 2008

He's the Man

The hub. doesn't race much. I think it's because he was a college runner--and a really good one--and racing now reminds him of what he could done then--and isn't doing now. But he's still so good, and I don't think he understands this. He's been mostly cross-training this winter in anticipation of his first tri this summer, so he wasn't sure what he could do in this race. He finished in just over 37. That's sub-6 minute pace! I can't run a sub-6 mile for longer than 400 yards, and he can just sort of blithely go out there and run 6.2 straight. Geez. As he crossed the line we all chanted, "There he is! The Daddy! The Old Man still has it! Go Daddy!" It was fun. The kids were really into it. I was a little sad I wasn't racing, because as you all know, I love to race, but it was fun to spectate for once. After the race I caught up with a few of my running buddies, including Vision Board, who ran well and was 5th master's woman, and 2nd in her age group. Yeah Mel! This weekend I (drum roll, please) did a lot of training. On Saturday I went for a 55 mile bike road solo--just me and the roads. I left at 6 a.m. It was cold. Much colder than I anticipated it would be-- and I froze. Every 10 minutes for the first 4 miles I had to stop so I could warm up my hands--and I DID have gloves. Finally I hit some good hills, though, and warmed up enough to forget how freezing I was. 55 miles is a long way to go alone. Usually I like to be alone (doesn't happen much these days with work and kids) but after a couple of hours I began to get sick of myself and my thoughts. Still, it turned out to be a great ride. I finished strong, averaged a little over 16 mph (which is good for me when I'm alone) and discovered a few new routes/loops because I got lost quite a bit. I did run across a rather frightening gaggle of turkeys. Yes, real turkeys, not the turkeys who try to run you off the road... (although I encountered a few of those as well...)   They're ugly, huh? Scary too. There was probably twenty-five of them, and they put out their big fans and made their ugly gurggley, "I'm pissed" noises. I seem to be encountering lots of interesting fowl lately on my work-out excursions. Anyway. Sunday. After the race this morning I went out for my own 12 mile run. I was beat from yesterday's ride and transition run, though, and so I didn't haul ass like I had planned I would in my master PLAN. It didn't help that I was feeling digestively challenged, and had to make a few pit stops along the way. It was a super hilly route, and so I spent more time out of my correct "zones" than I should've, but whatever. I tried to push the pace the last three miles, but I was pooped, and only averaged about 7:50 pace (I was shooting for 7:30's). Tomorrow: Back to work. Boo! Thank God it's a recovery week.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Vacation... Free at Last!

Lara came with me on my transition run yesterday. She was pretty happy about it! Usually I have two in the stroller, but my older two were at wilderness camp for the morning. They looked at budding leaves and found salamanders and turtles. They loved it, and I got a few hours with just my baby (okay, I know she's not really a baby anymore), which is an unusual occurrence!

Today I swam before the kids got up. 3000 yards. It was a hard workout, but I'm really psyched about how much stronger I am in the water than last year at this point. I did 3 x 400, descending, hard--ending with a 5:44, which is good for me, and faster than my TT time of a few weeks back. Then I did 6 x 200 alternating IM and free. The IM's were hard, because my fly is only sub par and it really tuckers me out.

When I got home from the pool the kids had just gotten up. I fed everyone, endured the wrath of the hub. who had missed his train b/c I swam so long (oops), and then packed up the kid and went to the gym. I put them in the daycare there, which they (fortunately for me) really like, and then went out for a run with my cell phone. It was 82 degrees out! It was really nice to be outside in just shorts and a top. I was only supposed to go a 1/2 hour, but who runs for just a 1/2 hour? So I ran for 50 minutes and went inside to do a few sit-ups.

I love vacation!


Here are a few jobs I would like to try:

  • Animal trainer. I'm particularly interested in training dolphins or maybe working with polar bears.
  • Writing. I don't know what I want to write, though, or for whom. And I don't want any due dates.
  • Professor of the 19th English novel. Maybe teach a course on the novels of Edith Wharton. Get paid a huge salary, offered tenure, and not required to publish at all.
  • Professional triathlete.
  • Coach.
  • Sports nutritionist.
  • Researcher on personality theory, with special focus on Myers Briggs Typology.
Unfortunately, barring I win the lottery and can pursue whatever I want without causing my family total financial disaster, none of these job ideas are actually possible.

More likely I will do one of four things next year:

  • Elementary librarian in a school setting. This I'm actually applying for, but I am not certified as a "library media specialist", and so this may prevent me from getting the job. We'll see.
  • Part time English teacher. I'm not seriously considering this opportunity. I'd have to convince them I really want to teach 8th grade (which I don't) and that I am up for another year of teaching (which I'm not).
  • Stay home mom. Here I become a slave to laundry, dishes and housecleaning. I'm actually already a slave to this stuff anyway, though, so who cares?
  • Tutor. I really don't like tutoring, so I'm not seriously considering this either. It pays well, but the hours don't work. I need to be home when my kids get home from school, not tutoring other people's kids.

Stay at home mom appeals to me the most. Unfortunately, I'm not sure it's a true possibility. The hub. can barely contain his panic every time I bring it up.


I'm getting really psyched about my first tri, which is coming up in 2.5 weeks. It's just a little sprint, but I'm still really focused on it. It marks my one year anniversary of becoming a triathlete. I did well last year given I had only been riding a bike for 6 days prior to the race and I was terrified I wasn't going to be able to unclip when I needed to. But it went well, I placed 6th in my age group and I was hooked! Anyway, I'm so excited to do this race again. I want to see how much better I can do with a year of experience and training under my tri-suit.The only problem is that I have to wear my QT2 uniform, in which I look a little like a sausage.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Breaking Away

To Cindy my meme not easy ___________________ Racing me versus time 37th lap ___________________ Though I really liked this tag I will not tag others who might curse me times ten for doing it to them again, again ____________________ Last night the hub. and I watched Breaking Away, the 1979 classic, after putting the kids to bed. I had never seen it before. Saying I really loved the film doesn't really do justice to how I actually felt about it. I connected to many parts of the movie. The part that I felt was most poignant came after David has been knocked off the road with a spoke stick by the Italian racing team. God my heart broke! And then the exchange with his father: "I didn't know that everyone cheats." (David) "Well." pause "Now you know." (father) I've always connected to the whole shattering of idealism thing--which seems to happen again and again throughout our lives in different ways. We suffer the same (slightly varied) wound of learning that the whole world cheats until we wake up one day totally embittered. We fight to not sink into quiet desperation. We take anti-depressants, have children who allow us to relive what we have lost, we get divorced--marry again--forever hoping that some of that early, untarnished joy might be recaptured. It's why we do triathlon. _________________________________________ Onto other news. I'm actually going through a job crisis. Just thought I'd let you know. It's a pretty bad one. I have been teaching for 16 years--since I was 22 years old. I had verve. I was inspired. I was alive. I was GOOD. 2008: I am burnt. When I was younger I used to look at veteran teachers who were clearly burnt out and who had become dead wood with such disdain. Why didn't they just get out? Clearly they disliked the kids, they disliked the job, they never stopped complaining and they had lost all vestiges of inspiration. Teaching doesn't really pay well. Why not just get out? Yeah. Well, younger self. You don't know SHIT. What about that pension you are going to get if you just stick it out for another 15-20 years? What about the seniority you've built up? The respect? The clout? The safety? What about the fact that the only f-ing thing you know how to do is teach? What about the fact that you have more than 60 credit hours of professional development under your belt and multiple degrees--all in literature and education--and who the hell cares about those degrees outside the world of school? What about the fact that you are at the top of the pay scale and you are pretty sure there is no way in hell anyone will pay you what you make now given that you have no qualifications to do anything other than to teach? What do you do then, huh? Sink into despair because you are slowly and surely turning into the despicable dead wood you so vehemently hate? Any of you who have survived this kind of mid-life crisis--I'm open to any and all advice. Those of you under the age of 30--I love you. But you ain't there yet. Talk to me in ten. ______________________________ Okay. Finally. the good stuff. Triathlon. My love. My savior. My Calgon Take Me Away! My Breaking Away! I went out for a grueling hill bounding workout on Thursday morning at 5:00 a.m. I had finished my repeats, and I decided I wanted to run to the very top of this hill (about .25 miles of super scary steepness) before I ran home. I reached the top. I'm panting. I'm ready
to walk. And then I see out of the corner of my eye, this: We looked at each other for a moment, and then he did this: I didn't have a camera, so these pictures are obviously not the same peacock I saw, but you get the idea. It was neat. I watched him for a good five minutes, and then he walked slowly away, and I started my slow recovery home. On Saturday I went for a 50 mile ride with my friend Petra. Petra is pretty much a tri goddess (e.g she did a 2:35 bike split at Clearwater 70.3, Worlds, last fall) , so I was intimidated, but excited for our ride. I got the Black all ready. (I decided to call her Black Beauty, btw. I do realize, for all you lit. buffs, that Black Beauty was a boy. I know!) Anyway, Black Beauty was looking fine. I was going to look like a tough, hip tri girl even if I did suck on the actual ride. It was a beautiful morning, it was all mine and I was PSYCHED. (and scared of sucking, too. definitely scared.) One interesting note: Petra and I kinda, sorta look like twins from a distance. We are both 5'2". We are the same weight (to the pound), we have similar body types, we both have the same color, same length hair, blue eyes, etc. Anyway. Close up we don't look that much alike, but from a distance we are clones. When she showed up she had on her red biking jacket, her black shorts, her blue/silver helmet, and a long pony tail in the back. um . that is exactly what I had on. exactly. We were like the Doublemint commercial--only without the skates, the boobs and the blond hair. It was kind of scary. Okay, I digress. The ride was amazing. It was a great day to be alive. We averaged about 16 mph with stops, which wasn't fantastic, but also not totally shitty given it was my first real, long, substantial ride outside this spring. I know I held Petra back, but she was very patient and didn't make me feel bad at all. To round out the weekend this morning I went out for a 10 mile run. I hammered it. I just felt so strong and alive and ready to take on the world. (I am also feeling a little upset and icky about the job thing--and I just wanted to hammer it all out.) During the last mile "Add it Up" by the Violent Femmes came on my playlist, and I went nuts and did a 6:30 mile. Wish I coulda done that two weeks ago in that shitty race... oh well. Tomorrow I take the kids out to watch the Boston Marathon. It's my hometown race, and it makes me sad that I'm not running it this year. But we can't have every race we want every year. Or maybe we can and I just haven't figured that out yet. ______________________ It's the NEXT DAY: Just wanted to give a shout out to all my buddies who kicked butt today! Rose, Michael, Maureen, David, Claire, Tom, Zac, Tim and Mike (a 2:41--holy shit!)--you all Rock! I'm so proud to know you! Here we are getting properly fueled to cheer everyone on at the Boston Marathon. What a fantastic race! What a great day!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

One absolutely awesome thing about the hub. is that he likes to do things "right." When we got the computrainer I knew he'd want to be able to hook up the lap tap and have it near by, but I had no idea how he would achieve this. This, my friends, is what he came up with.
Lest you think he purchased the stand, let me correct you. He built the platform out of some spare wood he had (he's a woodworker, among other things) and then went to Home Despot to purchase the piping. He even placed a handle on the upper end so we can easily move the platform around. I realize the laptop looks rather precariously held up there, but he attached rubber type things to the bottom of the laptop so it would be totally secure.

Now the only chore will be to keep the kids' paws off it...


Yesterday Lara made herself a high carb snack right before dinner. Check it out:

She was pretty proud of herself.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

LP 2009 or Do I Really Want to Do This?

It was supposed to pour today. It did pour this morning. There was lightning and thunder and everything. I felt it was a good move, therefore, to stick with my plan of going to Fast Splits to train with a few of my teammates on the trainers there. The trainers were set up such that we could all ride the Lake Placid course at the same time. Three hours on a trainer goes faster with a group, and I figured the course terrain would provide me with additional distraction.

When I arrived at Fast Splits the weather was staring to clear. I began to feel pangs of regret. I really, really times eight billion need practice outside on the bike. She's new, and frankly, I'm still new to biking. I lose a lot of time worrying I'm going to topple over when I ride outside.

Anyway, our coaches got everyone set up. I got on the bike, shifted, and my chain dropped. I got all greasy trying to put it back on until Tim took pity on me and put it on for me. (Yes, Tim from "Hi, I'm Tim.") I don't appear to be recovering well in the loser department from his perspective, I'm sure. I then took a look at the big screen from which I was going to view the "course."

You know that game at a carnival where each person takes on a plastic horse and you squirt some sort of water gun to move the horse forward? On this screen you could view the elevation profile of Lake Placid, but you could also view which rider was where on the course, and therefore who was ahead and who (soon to be my case) was behind. Oh joy. Each rider (horse) had a column with his/her name, wattage output, calories burned, pace and power to weight ratio on it. While I was eager to view this info for me, I was not so eager for my compatriots to view it. Sigh.

We calibrated the trainers. Mine was set to 2.4. What does that even really mean? Rainmaker, if you read this, can you please explain to me why computrainers need to be calibrated? I don't get it. And if a trainer is calibrated to 3 instead of 2, what difference does that make to the rider?

I digress. sorry.

We started. The Lake Placid course is pretty hilly, as I'm sure you know. What I didn't know was how UPHILL it is at the start. Holy shit. I thought I was going to die. I didn't have a gear that was low enough to deal with the hills. (Rainmaker, again, if it was set closer to 2 would this have made a difference?) Immediately upon starting my heart rate shot up well beyond my "zone" and my power output was up in the high 100s. Didn't I just establish that 165 was thresh for me? I began to panic. I was NOT going to survive this ride.

To make matters worse my "place" was soon established. Out of eight riders, I was sixth. One rider, Michelle, was not working it b/c she's doing Boston next weekend. The other rider "behind" me was Maureen-- who is 52.

Everyone else kicked my ass--.

I'd like to say it was because I was staying in zone 1--except that zone 1 wasn't even a possibility for me. My average hr was well into zone 2 for the ENTIRE ride. I'd like to say it's because I'm little, and so therefore I was at a disadvantage compared to those with more weight, but each rider's weight was entered and calculated for, so this was not the case!

This week I have been lamenting my lame ass performance in a variety of arenas. Today, however, I'm not going to lament how bad I suck. I actually thing I did wicked awesome today. The thing is, it's not that I suck, it's that my teammates are AWESOME. I am in awe. And that includes you, Kim--hello! Number 3! Sweet Jesus. I'm never listening to you bitch about being slow ever, ever again. Bah! You go out next weekend and kick some ass!

I would also like to say that I have a sweating issue. I'm just acknowledging, that's all. My teammates were dry. I had to wring out my top ever few minutes and I couldn't see for the sweat dripping and stinging my eyes. Yep. Such a lady.

I was able to ride next to Maureen, the 52-year-old woman I mentioned, who is, by the way, just an amazing athlete. (I hope to be doing half what she's doing when I hit 52.) She was so funny--told me a thousand stories to keep me entertained throughout the ride. At one point she was talking about how hot men who do triathlon are--especially the young ones--and how they (the young ones) don't suspect that we old ladies are completely in awe of their hotness, as if grandmas have lost their sex drives--or maybe never had them. She was so funny about it, I almost wet my biking shorts I was laughing so hard. I couldn't wet, though, because I was putting out all of my body's water stores via sweat.

I went for a short transition run after the ride and though it was slow, it felt great. The weather had turned warm and bright, and I was high from having worked my ass off for three hours. I really feel like the season is about to begin.

The end.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Green = Spring = Tri Season Coming = Happiness

Green is my favorite color. I feel better today, so I will write in green.

I grumbled about the race for days, and the hub. was nearly ready to rip out my vocal chords so I would just shut up. Luckily, on Tuesday afternoon I had a new focus: the RAMP test on the bike. We just got our Computrainer up and working, so it was time to measure my power at threshold and my power to weight ratio.

The hub. conducted the test.

The testing atmosphere wasn't the greatest: my dog kept farting, my kids were fighting and kept getting close to the rear wheel of the bike causing me to scream in rage and panic, and the hub., God love him, wasn't very encouraging and warm about the whole thing (could've been the farting dogs and wild kids-).
Finally he let the dogs out and settled the kids in front of Angelina Ballerina. I watched Angelina too as I warmed up and he fiddled with the computer. Re-cap: Angelina's buddy Thom, a ballet dancer, was getting bullied by the jock mice who like football (soccer). In the end, Thom proves that he is MAN by teaching them all to dance.

Bah! Get real.

I digress.

We got it all calibrated and decided failure would be the point at which my cadence fell below 80 rpm. We started with a power of 80 watts and moved it up 10 watts every minute. I was hoping to go to like 300.

That turned out to be a little out of reach...

I lasted 13 minutes. Andy put lots of comments in the chart he made like, "sweating like a hog", and "turning red and panting." Nice. For those of you not computing in your head, that means I failed at about 210 watts. That makes my threshold something like 165. Hello, sucky! Andy did point out that my weight to power ratio isn't actually very bad...

In short, I am short, little and don't have a whole lot of power in these here legs.
At least I don't have to carry a lot up hills.

I looked up my power/weight correlation in this book I have on using power as a measuring tool on the bike. On a scale of non-athlete (sucks ass) to Pro athlete, I was GOOD. Not shitty, not awesome, not even very good, but GOOD. Basically my biking power is very middle. I don't like middle. I like very good, or awesome, or holy shit, I can't believe it!

So I got even more pissy and angry and swore even more for a whole night (if that's humanly possible--I realize I swear like a sailor. I can't help it; swearing is just so much more colorful than benign talk. I digress again.) The hub. had to give me the "You love triathlon--don't ruin it with an obsession with being the best" lecture I need to hear every few days or so.
I agreed. I whimpered a bit, ate some chocolate and then I did my best to let it go. (Alas, the quart of Haagen Dazs wasn't available. )

This morning I got up and swam before work. I had to do the "BIG SET". Kim (aka Locked and Loaded) has described this in her blog before. You do an 800 warm up with some pulling and kicking and stuff. Then you do a 400 time trial, rest 2 minutes, do 2 x200 time trials, then rest two minutes, then do 5 x 100--first steady, second with one 25 hard, third with 50 hard, fourth 75 hard, and the last at full speed ahead on all 4 lengths. Then you add the times of the 400 the 2 x 200 and the final 100 together to get a score.

I kicked some ass! The only part that sucked is that I hit my heels on the wall on one flip turn. I hate that. It really hurt. The only thing worse is missing the wall. I did that once too.
I did the 400 on 5:45
2 x 200 on 2:46 and 2:45
and the final 100 on 1:18.
My score is 12:34.

That's better than I was last month. FINALLY, I am better at something than I was last month. I needed that.

All day I felt more chipper and not like such a lame ass, and after work I had a peaceful, easy run without my Garmin in the 55 degree weather we had today. Awesome! I wore shorts and a t-shirt outside for the first time this year.
Hello tri-season, here I come!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

RJ Crowley's 3 Mile Run: Mary Gives it All up in the Last 1/4 Mile

This race report won't be long. This is because I ran LIKE EFFING SHIT yesterday and I would prefer not to dwell on it. However, it is time to own up to my lame ass performance, so here goes. 

I drove there. I warmed up. During warm up I felt slow and heavy. This was not good, but I figured it was because it was drizzly and cold and after I got warmed I'd get my legs. Wrong wrong wrong. I ate some GU. I went to the starting line. Like usual, my warm up was soon all for naught b/c the race director felt the need to start the race a good ten minutes past the hour it was supposed to start. I was chilled and grumpy. I looked around at the field. It seemed large, but mostly nonthreatening. I chatted with my friend Barbara-- who asked what I'd been doing for training and raised her eyebrows a bit when I admitted that I had only been running 3x a week. 

The race director gave an uninspired "go"--and we set off. Within about 300 yards I knew it wasn't going to be a good race. I just didn't feel zippy. But, I reasoned, better to stay strong and upbeat. It could be okay. The first mile I was the second woman. 6:46. I was too tired, though, and I knew I had to scale back. Second mile: 7:15. Strange. That is the EXACT splits of the first two miles of my last race. Interesting--and depressing. At the start of mile 3 I was passed by another woman. Okay. Third. I can deal with third. I just had to hang on. I did my best to pick up the pace and stay strong. 

 A quarter mile to go. A little (and I mean little) girl zips by me. I found out later she was 11. Okay--4th--but hey--at least I knew she wasn't in my age group. ' Last 1/8 of a mile--I get passed by not one, but two women. FUCK! I try to kick, but I have nothing. There's one more girl on my tail. I hold her off just barely for 6th--3rd in my age group. A shitty time (21:09) and a lame ending. I felt bad. Really bad. I also felt angry. 

Why did I run like shit? Enough of this running 3 x a week in zone 1! If you want to run fast, you have to run fast when you train. I felt pissed. I still feel pissed. I get home and check the results. The fucking bastards (who were writing down who came in where--no chip in this event) REVERSED me and the chick who I held off. So she got 6th, I got 7th, and she took my 3rd in AG. I was seething. I still am. It's bad enough to have a shit race, but to be denied the only good thing you did in it--to hold someone off--that just SUCKS. The only thing to do now it train like a mad woman and smoke everyone, everywhere from this day forward. Watch out ladies, I'm running you down. Sincerely, pissed in MA.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Generalization at its Finest: A Report on the Personality of Runners, Bikers, Swimmers, and Triathletes

When I was just running, I was absorbed in what I now understand as road racing/running culture. I love running culture. I feel very at home there. Recently, however, I have begun to define myself as a triathlete first and a runner second. Entering the world of triathlon has opened my eyes to the different personalities of each of the triathlete's disciplines. What follows are total hyperbolic generalizations. It's also a work in progress.  

The Runner Descriptive phrases and adjectives: More and longer is always better (you don't find "streakers" who do their discipline daily for years straight, for example, except in running), self-coached, self-reliant, stubborn, tough, hardy, uncomplaining (to the point of stupidity), constitutionally incapable of admitting injury, jovial (other than during races), consistent, unwavering.  

Sign: Capricorn, Virgo, Taurus  

Beauty factor: Male runners are often scrawny, bearded, geeky and frequently balding. Female runners (elite) are waifs, often pasty waifs. Female age-groupers can't be pinpointed, I don't think. They seem to come in all shapes and sizes. A shared attribute is a determined, stolid race face.  

Feelings about gear and fashion: Gear is for pretty boys. Give me shoes, a t-shirt, and a pair of shorts and I'm good to go. On second thought, it's hot out--can I lose the shirt?  

Reasons/Thoughts on racing: To beat one's best friend so you can laugh about it over a beer after the race; because racing hurts and pain is good; the more races you do in a year, the better; racing twice in one weekend or day is dedication, not insanity; to get revenge on a course that shattered you in the past; to go the distance; so you can tell war stories.  

Training philosophy: Train hard, train long, train train train. Rest is for wimps. Speed work once a week even if you raced last weekend  

Why run in a group: So you can share war stories about past races, so you can forget the pain you are in, so you can hang with your buddies.  

Why run alone: Because you need to toughen up.  

Animal: A cross between a gazelle and a mule.  

Favorite beverage: Beer. Maybe wine, if no one is looking.  

Thoughts about food: Runners run to eat. Many began running to lose weight, and relish that running allows them to eat with abandon.  

Color: Navy  

Myers Briggs type: ESTJ or ESFJ  

Common jobs: Nurse, police officer, insurance 

Feelings about triathletes: Gear queers, pretty boys, Nancies, vain beauty queens  

Feelings about swimmers: What's a swimmer? Feelings about cyclists: Unsmiling, unfriendly, pig the road, spandex? you must be kidding me, too skinny, wussy  

Hogwarts' House: Gryffindor  


The Cyclist   


Descriptive phrases and adjectives: Move in groups like a wolf pack , lots of arcane hand signals for the paceline, fashionable and pretty, graceful, petite, don't sweat, smooth, Euro  

Male/Female ratio: Dominated by males.  

Sign: Leo, Aquarius  

Why train in a group: Drafting, because real bikers ride in a group, pace line, pace line, handling, pace line  

Why train alone: Real bikers don't train alone  

Animal: Wolf 

Color: Neon  

Myers Briggs type: ISTJ  

Common jobs: Engineer, bike specialist, musician  

feelings about triathletes: Can't ride in a group--beware! Have no riding sense, all show 

feelings about swimmers: Nice, if you like to move slowly and cover absolutely no ground.  

feelings about runners: On your left, frickin' caveman!  

Hogwarts' House: Slytherin  


The Swimmer  

Descriptive phrases and adjectives: Mellow, kind, wholesome, good  

Feelings about gear: All you need is a suit, a cap and a pool. Real swimmers use the pull buoys and kickboards provided at the pool. They know they'll be there.  

Reasons for racing: Exercise for life. Most swimmers raced once upon a time. They might do a Masters meet in the winter. Some have found their competitive spirits again by doing relays in triathlons.  

Sign: Pisces, Cancer, Aquarius 

Why swim in a group: Masters swimming rocks. Introverts unite! You never really swim alone. An empty pool is bliss, though.  

Animal: Fish, duh.  

Favorite beverage: Orange juice  

Color: Medium blue  

Myers Briggs types: INTJ, INFJ, INFP, ENFJ  

Common jobs: Teacher, artist, scientist  

Feelings about triathletes: Why do they bring so much gear to the pool?  

Feelings about runners: Sure, if you like back pain and dislike knee cartilage.  

Feelings about cyclists: I used to have a bike. I used it for my paper route.  

Hogwarts' House: Hufflepuff  

The Triathlete  

Descriptive phrases and adjectives: Ego, ADHD, intense, vivid, dynamic, alert, focused, TYPE A, vain, hot  

Beauty Factor: Triathletes, as a group, are a good looking crowd.  

Feelings about gear: Is there something I don't have? Maybe I can sell my old school books...  

Reasons for racing: Depends what race you're talking about. A races, B races, C races? They're each very different. You should know that. And if you forget, it's in my plan. Sign: Aries, Sagittarius, Leo, Libra  

Training mantras: Periodization, blocks, progression, histogram, phases, peak, purpose intentionality, hours per week.  

Why work out in a group: Because you can't always avoid it. Groups mess with The Plan. They don't respect your heart rate, your zone, your power, or your cadence. You can be social at Book Club.  

Animal: Eagle  

Color: Red F

avorite beverage: Fruit smoothie spiked with protein powder.  

Thoughts about food: God didn't make food for taste. Food is fuel. Good nutrition is essential for superior performance.  

Myers Briggs type: ESTJ, ENTJ, INTJ, ENFJ  

Common jobs: investment banker, venture capital, finance, physician...but often they're unemployed so that they can train more.  

Hogwarts' House: Ravenclaw