Monthly Archives: April 2012

4/30/12 The Wall of Testosterone

Monday.  Completed my 6th race at St. Anthony’s yesterday.  30 minutes slower (3:53) than my best result (3:25) but I’m okay with how I did because I felt good, I worked hard, I started to remember how to do these triathlons, I had fun, I met one of my idols, I got to hang with my friend Melissa, had a nice visit with my friend Marlie after the race and today I feel okay.  Of course I wish I could have ended with a better posted result but as we know not all victories are measured on the clock.

Flew down on Friday, got settled into my B&B, did a few errands, had dinner and before I knew it, time for bed.  I think arriving on Friday was a good choice.

Saturday I went for a short run when I got up.  Got sidetracked in cheering for the little 7 year olds doing the meek and mighty.  They are so cute I couldn’t help myself.

I tried out my new long-sleeved wetsuit (Promotion brand).  I like it but I really don’t like wetsuits.  But as wetsuits go this one was okay.  Lots of movement in the shoulders and no pulling on my arms.  It’s acceptable but I think I need more practice in it before I race in it. Training camp in May will provide that. The wetsuit test was really for Alcatraz in June.  I had no intention of wearing a wetsuit at St. A’s the water temp ended up being 73 degrees and that was perfect temp for me and no westsuit needed.  But Alcatraz is going to be cold and I’m a little nervous about my asthma and the cold so long-sleeved wetsuit needed. Swam for about 15 minutes with wet suit and another 15 without.  Water was amazing!

I picked up my bike, went for a 20 minute ride just to make sure everything was working and racked my bike in transition.  Melissa and I went to Prima for dinner downtown, we both LOVED it and will go back again.

Race morning Melissa and I got up 5 a.m.  For breakfast I had a protein shake, and one piece of bread with earth balance spread.  I also drank a bottle of Infinit (my custom sports drink).  All together about 550 calories.  That was more than enough — I didn’t need the bread.  I couldn’t eat my banana.  For next time I’ll know protein shake and bottle of infinite would be enough — maybe do the banana instead of the bread.  But morning calories I think were just right and I made sure to hydrate a lot the two days prior to the race.  I think I did that all right.

I made one executive decision that was probably not the smartest.  I felt my tires in transition and I decided to not pump them.  They felt just right to me and I had tested my bike out the day before and they felt okay.  I just didn’t want to muck around too much with my bike.  A little voice just told me to leave her alone so I did. I was afraid of the rising heat temps and that maybe they would explode (happened to me in Disney 1/2 IM).  In retrospect I probably should have pumped the tires more — might have given me a smidge more speed.  But sometimes you just go with your gut.  They felt fine during the race.  I did not feel like I was riding on low tires.

Got my transition set up in a jiff and Melissa and I headed down to the swim start.

The big news at St. A’s is that they have changed the swim course.  Instead of swimming from the pier out and counter clock wise to Vinoy Park, you swim from a northern beach and swim clockwise down to Vinoy Park.  It looked to me that we would be swimming against the current most of the time but the water seemed calm enough that it wouldn’t matter.

Also new for the swim is it is an in-water start.  Because the water is so shallow to about 75 meters out into the bay, each wave (group of athletes) entered the corral and then walked out to the start in the water.  When the gun goes off athletes would start swimming from the water instead of running in from the beach as in previous years.  I liked the new start much better.  Seemed less chaotic.

My wave was one of the earliest.  I went off at 7:05 with the women over 60 and the Athena women (over 150 pounds).  I was so excited to see Sister Madonna Buder was there to swim in my wave.  Nobody was announcing her name or making the big hulabaloo they made in Canada that she was in the race.  I actually got a chance to walk up and meet her in person (I’ve been to hear her speak.)  82 years old, full-time nun, part-time triathlete, multi-time Ironman.  I really admire her spirit and love for the sport.  It made my day to be able to speak to her.

I was happy to get an early start.  In past years I’ve had to wait as much as 2 1/2 hours for my wave start and that is grueling.  But with every give there is a take and my one draw back is that after my small wave of maybe 20 women in pink caps, came the Men.  Rough guestimate from the results but approximately 400 men swam past me in the race. I’m not making that up, about 400 man swam past me in the 44 minutes I was out there.  The next group of women would not be in the water until an hour after me so I knew there would be no women coming up behind me. That meant anyone who swam 5, 10 or 15 minutes faster than me would be swimming over me and past me.  Rough peruse of the results showed 400 men did that.  Males swimmers are not quite as polite as female. I knew I had two choices, swim wide and let them pass me or swim my regular line and be prepared to be kicked and pushed.  I decided to hold my line and if they were going to swim past me I was going to try to catch a draft.  Yes I got knocked around a couple of times (one big wallop to the head), but for the most part as long as I swam straight, they didn’t bother me.  Maybe that was a mistake to stay in the fray, but I think it was good experience.

Of everything, I was disappointed in my swim result.  I felt that I was swimming with a decent effort the entire time.  I didn’t stop, pause, go too far off course and yet I was six minutes slower than my predicted time.  It took me 44 minutes instead of my predicted 38.  I’m still not exactly sure why.  I did feel there was some resistance and chop as we took the left turn out to sea but I thought for sure the draft I would get would make up for it.  This was no lake swim for sure but I really didn’t feel I was swimming that slowly.  Not sure if I will ever figure that one out but that was about six minutes of my overall 30 minute overage.  My recent pool swim times have been just about the same, no big difference there.  Just a mystery.

I had a decent transition onto my bike.  I didn’t bother with things like socks or gloves.  3 minutes and change is pretty good for me in transition.

One note.  My doctor gave me a new inhaler on Thursday.  WHAT A DIFFERENCE!   Normally I get out of the water and spend the entire time on the biking coughing and most of the run wheezing.  NONE of that.  It was amazing.  My lungs were clear, clear, clear.  Even better than my old inhaler (which was expired).  The new one really seems to work great. AND, I didn’t spend the next 24 hours coughing either (which is usually what happens after a big workout of breathing deeply.) Very pleased with that.

The bike.  Yep, for me it all boils down to the bike.  One thing I do wish I had done was have a bike tune up.  Tina (my bike) has not had a tune up since 2010 and I know both she and I would benefit from one.  I just didn’t have time before I went down.  I also didn’t have time to even clean her up.  I took her right from my 80 mile ride on Saturday to the bike shop for shipping.  At the bike shop they said I needed to get my hub fixed and it was time for a new chain.  None of that would have a huge impact on my performance but maybe a little.

Although I had a tremendous fun on the bike — St. Anthony’s is all about how I like to ride, get into Aero, big chain ring and pump, I was over ten minutes slower than my best. I only averaged 17.1 mph. I’ve averaged 19 mph in the past. That actually made up a big chunk of my total-time overage.

I made sure to set a minimum cadence of 82 (82 seems to be my natural cadence and if I shoot for 90 I often end up 82 or higher).  I seemed to be at 85-87 every time I looked down at my cadence.  I was pleased with that.

Weather was perfect.

I did my bike nutrition right.  One bottle of Infinite and one bottle of plain water (remembering my lesson from my workouts in NJ several weeks ago when I drank too much Infinite without plain water and got stomach issues.)

The biggest difference this year for me was I usually spend the bike portion of the race passing people. I am usually one of the last waves and I just pick people off one by one.  This was different. It was a wall of men passing me.  I really couldn’t believe it.  It was bizarre. These were all the men left who had not passed me in the swim. It was their turn to pass me on the bike. Anytime I wanted to pass someone there were five guys on my left passing me.  I didn’t find anyone to pass until mile 10 (which was a weird feeling).  Just swarms of guys and the race officials were out in full force looking to give penalties.  I didn’t even bother doing my sit up and look innocent “not me drafting sir.”  Even when I was going 19 mph they were just swooshing by me.  I saw maybe two women ahead (out and back) and I think about 3 women did pass me (you mean I was faster than someone on the swim? or they just took a long time in transition).  Other than that it was just me and this wall of testosterone.  I was not so sure I liked this early wave start.  I do better when I have someone to hunt down.  I lost a lot of time on the turns because these guys were just crazy — they would just cut everyone off (not just me). But I kept focusing on a good cadence and every once in awhile I tried to get out of my comfort zone.   But I started to think that the weather was pretty nice, if I didn’t kill my legs I might actually have a run come out of me.

The run. The first couple of miles I just took my time warming up and getting used to the heat.  It was hot but it wasn’t humid so I was okay. And that inhaler was really working! I was actually able to get myself up to running 4 minutes, walking 1 and dumping a lot of water on my head at the water stops.  Several people commented on how I was one of the few women out there.  “I said I know it’s weird.”  It wasn’t until about mile 3 when I started to see more women flying past me.  Around mile 4 Sister Madonna Bruder passed me and I yelled out her name.  She lifted her arms as if flying — the flying nun.  She was pretty skippy if you ask me.  It was mile 5 and 6 that I found really hard.  No shade and the sun was just beating down.  I had to drop to a 2 minute run 1 minute walk.  It was just too hot and I could feel my heart rate going through the roof.  Despite that I still felt good.  I wasn’t in pain, I just didn’t want to have a heart attack or anything.  My mantra became, “I am strong and I am grateful.”  I saw ambulances ahead toward the finish line.  Turns out some guy had a heart attack just as he turned into the final finish shoot.  Apparently he grabbed his heart yelled out “oh crap” and went down.  I heard they were able to revive him and got him to an ambulance.  I’ve heard no other updates.

I was so grateful to be done.  I had no knee pain, no lung problems, no shooting pains in my butt, no hamstring problems — one calf cramp on the swim but it was short and at the end. Pain-wise, might have been one of my top pain-free races. I was happy. If had started even an hour later I’m not sure I would have had a “happy race.”  But I felt I had an even pressure on myself throughout the entire race.  Could have pushed harder?  Sure.  But this was not my A race.  This was a warm-up for me.  A chance to dust off the old triathlon skills.  Work out the kinks and be ready for the bigger races coming up.  Most of all it was a chance for me to have a race feeling good.  No dizziness, no hallucinations, no country music in my head, no pulling over into a coma, just a good even race from which I would recover and keep on going.  And that I had.  And for that I am grateful.


I’m a huge fan of Sister Madonna Buder Turns out she published a book in 2010. How did I not know that? I just ordered it, will read and review. It’s called “The Grace to Race.” And here’s a cute article about her with a few of her pearls

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4/25/12 Report Card

Wednesday.  Wanted to record the results of my  doctor’s exam.  Almost all good.  Things to be grateful for.  First, lost 15 lbs without “dieting.”  I have not had any alcohol and I’ve been eating a lot of greens and of course Ironman Training.  Most important as I said to the doctor “I just stopped worrying about it.”  “That’s probably your best course.” He said.  I know what I have to do: eat fruits, veggies, grains, nuts and seeds.  Stay away from the processed stuff.  I don’t need a food journal to tell me a candy bar is not “on plan.”  I have more to go here but I feel my mindfulness “diet” is better than high doses of guilt.  Don’t get me wrong, lots of room for improvement but overall I feel like I’m losing slowly but losing.  Grade B.

Blood Pressure okay 111/80.  Grade A.

Iron still not out of the woods but I’m definitely NOT anemic.  I have to work getting these Iron stores up.  Low but in acceptable range.  Better than last year.  Grade C.

My Thyroglobulin is nice and low — almost zero which is what I want.  But my  Antibodies went up again.  I want those to be zero too.   So that’s not so good but it is nothing to freak out about.  Just annoying that I’m not done with all this yet. Grade C-.

So for now, just another ultrasound on my neck (totally painless other than having to get to the East side of Manhattan.)  Slight modification to my medication.  More blood tests.  Work on getting my Iron even better.  I would say it nets out to ‘C’ average.  My doctor is happier than I am.  I want perfection.  He is an easy grader.  He thinks I’m improving.  I wanted today to be my “graduation” day.  I want him to say “come back in a year”, but instead he says he’ll see me in three months for summer school.  I frown.  He says “c’mon, we’re not such a bad place to visit.”  I know there are people with serious medical problems out there and I really do feel so very much better but is it too much to ask for a report card without that dreaded “needs improvement” comment?

Tomorrow I see the really tough doctor my PCP — she is not an easy ‘A’ but when you get one you know it’s a real one.



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4/23/12 Right, I Knew That

Monday.  Yikes, I don’t know where Monday went.  Life is a blur.  So much work, so much training, back and forth to CT.  Feeling guilty that I don’t do any one thing particular thing well.  Working very hard on observing, forgiving, patience — maintaining perspective is my hourly challenge. But overall I will say I’m doing and feeling well.

Last week I started to feel like I was physically fading and pulled back — I embraced my fifties and said I need a little more rest.  Two Saturdays ago, I had hoped I would feel all rested and chipper but it ended up being not such a great workout for me.  7 hours, 3 bricks (that means we ran, biked, ran, biked, ran, biked).  I did fine on the first set.  But then I had an asthma attack, drank too much sports drink with no plain water and got nauseous and pulled my hamstring on the second set.  I limped through the third.  I  felt defeated and old and not very pleased with myself.  Coach and I determined that my flexibility and memory cells were lacking.  Forgot my inhaler, forgot plain water and forgot to incorporate stretching.  What’s wrong with me?  I know all of this stuff. I just seem to have forgotten everything and I’m relearning one painful experience at a time. On Sunday I felt totally wrecked and couldn’t get my head off the pillow.  I was convinced I was sick (but no real symptoms other than a bruised ego and a tired, old body) and stayed in bed the entire day.  I could not get up to do the 3 hour bike ride we were assigned and frankly I didn’t care.  General assessment, forget it, I can’t do this.

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, some not so bad swims and runs.  Some decent workouts.  Actually surprised myself.   Rest and you come back stronger.  Right, I forgot.  It’s a long season, a couple of bad workouts do not mean it’s all over.  I’ve seen people miss a month of workouts and come back stronger.

I had to go for a blood draw on Wednesday and I was not happy.  This was be an important blood test and I had been feeling so good up until a week ago.  Why, now, when I had to have my blood taken was I feeling not so sparkly?  Not fair.  I realized how nervous I had been and that there was a lot of hidden stress in just having my blood taken.  This week I go to the doctors (two different ones) for checkups and I will get important blood results.  I will be either very happy or very sad. I need to have a general check up as well before I race this Sunday in Florida.  I don’t like my primary care physician, she always finds something wrong…  Underlying stress.

Thursday I couldn’t wake up.  Again I felt sick.  I couldn’t put my finger on it.  Like a flu that didn’t blossom.  So many work deadlines and I couldn’t focus.  I took to a coma for about 2 hours in the afternoon (that kind of nap so deep you wake up disoriented and unsettled).  Rallied to go out with my friend for theater and dinner and felt fine.  Woke up Friday morning at 4:30 a.m. WIDE AWAKE and ready to ride.  It was the weirdest thing.  I had no question in my mind or body that all I wanted to do (not have to do or feel guilty to do) was ride my bike.   My head was clear, my body felt rested. Whatever had been wrong was gone.  I hopped on my bike and did 3 loops of the park with good cadence before I could say what for.  Hey, not so bad.  I had forgotten how nice it is to ride on Friday mornings in the park, peaceful.

Saturday 80 mile ride with the gals on the team.  This was my entire motivation for joining a team in the first place — someone to push me on long rides.  Our team is structured differently from my old team.  We have half and full ironman training together.  Large group riding out.  Everyone is very nice.  We stop in Nyack to refuel and the half team heads home and it is just 4 of us gals who proceed onto Rockland, 3 loops of the lake and then 2 repeats of the Rockland Hill before we head back home (that kind of hurt a little).  It’s really great to have company and I’m not the slowest.  For some reason I’m keeping up.  They lose me on the hills, I catch back up on the flats, then I’m leading the pack once we are past Ranger Station (it’s mostly downhill aka hammer-time.)  We did 80 miles in 6 hours (I’m including some street wandering in the East Village in that mileage) and honestly felt that I could have kept on going easily.   Hmm maybe I can do this.

Sunday I went out to Hook Mountain to cheer for my friends and get a little run in.  Not my favorite place on the planet.  I will NEVER forget my races there.  Had another asthma attack pretty much as soon as I got there hacking all over my fellow cheerleader Wes. My inhaler is 3 years old and it didn’t seem to be working — go figure. My biggest fear right now is having an asthma attack in the water.  I have a doctor’s appointment on Thursday to get a new inhaler before I go to Florida.  I think it is the combination of spring flowers and cold weather.  That or Hook Mountain just hates me.  My friends all did amazing and it was so rewarding to watch them finish that race with a dignity that I never found there.

Friday I leave for Florida.  St. Anthony’s race on Sunday with my friend Melissa.  I would be feeling fine about this except for the predicted 86 degrees.  I don’t run so well in the heat so this will be a bit of a slog as opposed to my normally lightening-fast running.  The good news is I am in an early wave 7:05 a.m. That means I’ll be done by 11 a.m. before the heat settles in.   I have friends who finished the Boston Marathon in 86 degrees so who am I to complain? My friend Melissa goes off about 1 hour later.  Since she is about an hour faster than I am, there is a possibility that we might cross the finish line somewhere together which would be awesome (though I will do my best to fend her off!).  Bad news is the next 4 waves after mine are the men, 30-50 who will come swimming over my head.  Eh, it will be good practice for Ironman, get a couple of water fights under my belt before the big day.  And by big day I mean jumping off the boat in Alcatraz in June.  I’m not really worried about a lake swim in Canada.  Cold and strong current in San Francisco bay are making me nervous.

And this is how it goes.  The roller coaster of training.  One week I’m up.  The next I’m down. Learning to be patient.  Learning to trust my body.  Relearning everything over and over.  If Ironman is the journey not the race, I’m kind of stuck somewhere between Newark and Jersey City right now  but still heading in the right direction.


“Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” ~Terry Pratchett, from “A Hat Full of Sky”

This is my new swimming drill I really like.  Need flippers and paddles.  It’s called the Unco drill (short for uncoordinated drill).  It’s an extension of the one-arm drill.  I feel this has been helping.

The Unco drill

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4/9/12 Putting on My Nancy Pants

Monday.    I read a lot as a child but I didn’t fall in love with reading until the 4th grade when I got my hands on my first Nancy Drew mystery.  I actually don’t know if I read first the case of the Hidden Stair Case or the one about the Old Clock, I just remember opening page one and not leaving my room until I had read every word of every page and let out that deep satisfying sigh of falling in love with a book.  Turned out all my friends had discovered the same set of books and we started our first book club.  Everyone brought in their latest copy of a Nancy Drew mystery and we shared them until we could find no more.  (And then we read the Bobbsey Twins and the Hardy Boys).  I wanted to be Nancy Drew.  Smart, beautiful, athletic (tennis player) and solving mysteries in her spare time.  What more could you want to be in life? 40 something years later I am still always looking for the route not traveled.  The adventure, the mystery.  If I’ve done it before I probably don’t feel like doing it again.

I am feeling very tired this week.  I’ve had a good run  so to speak, so I’m not complaining.  I’ve had three weeks of really hard (for me) workouts and was really excited about how much energy I had and how quickly I felt like I was recovering.  Two weeks ago we had a hard bike workout on river road.  Last weekend we had a really hard bike workout in Dunellen New Jersey hill repeats on a mountain (small moutain but really steep).  “If you stop pedaling you WILL fall off your bike” the coach warned us.  I had been really nervous as I’m struggling on my climbing but I made it up (after passing one gal who proved the coach was correct).  After climbing the mountain we had a nice ‘flat’ ride. We time-trialled back, I tried to show off.  I got my crank handed to me by some gals who showed me a what-for.  Then when I thought we were done, coach tells me, two repeats of the mountain then you can go back up and home.  ARE YOU FREAKIN kidding me?  “Surprise” he says and points for me to get to it.  I bitched and moan the entire time but I finished with absolutely no dignity whatsoever.

Following that we had a bike intensive week.  Tues (endurance), Wed (intervals) and Thurs (hills). I didn’t get any of my swims in, just not enough hours because I am busier than ever with work.  Tennis?  What’s that?  Shooting?  Yeah, not right now.  By my final run on Thursday I was pooped.   Friday in CT helping my folks — new chairs, lots of furniture moving by me and lots of window cleaning.

Saturday morning came and I just couldn’t move.  I was so tired.  I had to do a 5 hour bike and I just didn’t have it in me.  Believe it or not a 2 hour run sounded easier (when have those words ever come out of my fingers?)  A friend of the family was visiting and I said I was going to go for a walk on the Granby trail and hopefully find some energy to do some running.  “Oh will you go by Lake Basile?”  What’s Lake Basile?  My family has lived here since 1856 (that’s not a joke) and I have never heard of Lake Basile.  “Yes, it’s a small Lake in North Simsbury/East Granby that they are trying to raise money to restore.  There was a writer who lived on the lake who was famous for sleeping outdoors all year round.  She wrote some childrens’ books.  She was a bit kooky.”  Wait a minute, are you saying there is a hidden lake with a crazy lady?  Shut up!  I had my running shoes on in two minutes.  I was out the door to find the hidden lake!

Unfortunately to find Lake Basile I had to run through about 4 miles of old Tobacco farms which were kind of old and boring but eventually the the trail jutted off into the woods and after a bit I looked to my right and there it was — a perfect, little lake tucked away in the woods.  I would have never have seen it because it is totally hidden from road view.  I have been running the trails in Canton, Unionville, Farmington, Avon, Simsbury and Granby for years now but I sometimes have a hard time connecting sections of trails.  This was one little section that I had missed for one reason or another.  The lake was adorable with some very interesting information posted.  Apparently this is part of the Farmington Canal System which I have just been learning about.

Apparently before the railroads there was a very sophisticated canal system that ran from New Haven up to Massachussets.  This canal system served boats that delivered goods and supplies to the North.  Then the railroads came and they built railroads over the canal and that became the preferred method of distribution.  Then the floods came and wiped out the railroads.  They didn’t rebuild them as cars and trucks became more prominent. Meanwhile miles and miles of old canal and train track beds were left from New Haven to Mass.  These train tracks have been converted to the Farmington Canal Trailway.   I did not know all of this.  I knew about rails to trails but I didn’t really know the history of the canal part and that there were vestiges of the canal system left over like Lake Basile.

Also at Lake Basile I learned about the author Clara Dean Marshall.   Of course now I have to hunt down her books which apparently are mysteries based on Lake Basile.  Turns out she is the “kooky” person who slept on her porch.   I think she sounds fabulous.  Here is a link that tells about Lake Basile and how they are trying to raise money to restore it to a swimmable Lake.   Apparently there is even a cousin to the Loch Ness Monster living in Lake Basile! Lake Basil    I felt such a sense of satisfaction for finding the hidden lake and learning about the ‘kooky’ writer who lived on the lake.

Sunday morning I was still tired.  I knew I couldn’t do the 5 hour ride that was assigned.  The rest of the team had ridden to Rockland lake and had done loops of the park (about 70).  I knew I did not have that in me and it was time to listen to my body.  Be grateful for what you have been able to do and now when your body is asking you for a rest, let it rest.  I decided I could do an easy spin on the rails to trails and just get a little time in the saddle without any big hills.  Thinking about yesterday’s adventure I  was thinking about what else I might have been missing on this Canal trail.  I decided to head out and head north on the trail and see how far it would go.

Turns out the canal trail heads into Massachusetts and I followed it to the end in Southwick.  About 23 miles from my house to the end.  Then I got the grand idea that maybe I could follow the trail back down to Unionville and hook up with the Farmington Valley Green way.  That would be a real accomplishment but I would have to cross two highways and I just couldn’t figure out how the trail would cross Route 44.  But only way to find out would be to put on my Nancy Drew Pants and go find out.  So off I went following the canal back to CT, through Granby, Simsbury and finally ending up in Avon.  This was where it would get tricky but I just kept following the trail markers.  It was leading me on sidewalks and through back parking lots and finally dumped me out behind the Avon police department.  This was the weirdest bike ride I had ever been on but I was getting more and more curious (and tired and hungry).  And then I saw it.  The missing piece.   Behind the police station in the back of the parking lot was  a small tunnel!!  A tunnel?  I looked up and saw route 44 (busy 4 lane road) above with all the traffic zooming by.  I road through the tunnel and there I was in some industrial park on the other side of the highway.  I kept riding and following the trail markers.  More back parking lots, more sidewalks and then I saw it!  The Avon trail head!  I knew that trailhead but I had never known how to connect to it. Mystery solved — you had to take the secret tunnel to get there!  I could ride all the way from Massachusetts to Farmington (even though I was only in Avon I knew the rest of the route).

Picture of my fabulous hidden tunnel that connects me from Avon to Farmington and goes under route 44.

I looked at my watch 4 hours 48 miles.  Yeah that’s not impressive at all but I was really tired and there were a couple of short stops in there.  I knew if I continued on to try to connect the remaining dots it was at least another 20 miles.  I just didn’t have it in me.  I was exhausted and starving (even though I had brought calories and water with me, it wasn’t enough.)  I decided to leave the rest of the mystery (connect Farmington to Unionville) for the next time.  I still had another 8 miles or so to get home. I finished slow but sure cutting through the back roads of my childhood.  Unfortunately no way to avoid some very hilly terrain on the back roads.  I decided I would suffer through the hilly 8 vs the flat 20.

I felt very satisfied with my mystery-solving weekend.  I loved finding Lake Basile and I was thrilled to find the hidden tunnel behind the police station.  That was very cool.

Another week of training ahead, less biking, more swimming and running.  Another big workout coming this weekend in Long Valley NJ.  I’m starting to get wise to the coach’s descriptions.  He talks about the brewery and burgers and slips in there a mention of hills and bricks (yes plural) and ends with brewery and burgers.  But I’m going and I’m doing it.  I’m going to put on my Nancy Pants and find out what the big mystery is in Long Valley, NJ.


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