Sunday, April 28, 2013

I hate it when real life is so real

So..I have not posted in a while..I'm going to use that excuse of real life getting in the way.  I haven't trained much either.  Triathlon and training is kind of a fun diversion and hobby..but in my life it definitely takes a back seat.

Three weeks ago I lost my Uncle.  It came as a complete surprise.  I received a call Monday morning that he was in the hospital. I flew out that afternoon and got to the hospital an hour before he passed away.  I was not ready for this..especially only two months after my mother's passing.  And especially since both him and my mother were so young.  Uncle Tim had always been  a big part of my life..especially when I was younger.  He is where I got some of my sense of humor (for good or bad)  He coined my nicknames..Leonard Lardass and melon head..which I use today with pride. And taught me how to be completely un PC.

Uncle Tim..We will miss him

Needless to say everyone was stunned but the family came together as always.  Three days later as I was about to head to the airport to return to Colorado we got the call that my parent's neighbor of 40 years had also just passed away.  2013 has been shaping up to be just a stellar year.

A week after I got back home my brother and his wife visited.  They had not been to Colroado in 8 years..and honeslty it was just super comforting to have family staying with us.  They actually convinced me to take a brewery tour..which you all know I hate beer..but it was actually fun. It was the New Belgium Brewery in Fort Collins. They make the classic Fat Tire.  I did not care for the standard beers but did like.. the Trippel and the Transatlantique Kriek ..yummy..cherry flavored.  No one else liked the Kriek except my sister in law.  She has good taste.  Of course my wife and Ben loved the hoppy beers..
Brewery Tour

Entertaining the tour people

Cool Chair..need to make this

Laila asking questions during tour..

 They ended their visit with a hike at one of our favorite local places..Lair o' the Bear.

Aunty Adrianne, Laila and Uncle Ben

That same week Ben and Adrianne were visiting I had my the doctor had seen for me and well within good standards for anyone!! woo hoo. Uric Acid under control!!  Vitamin D close to normal.  Excellent in a while.  Oh..let me listen to your heart.  Umm.  we need you to come in for testing..What?  Apparently there are murmurs that have not been there in 14 years.  Of course the tests were a week away.  I completely freaked out.  I didn't want to train or raise my heart rate.  Even at night I would listen to my heart as I lay in bed..hearing the murmur and the elevated heart least in my head.  Based upon my family history as well as recent events all I could think about was the worst possible scenarios.  And of course my sister in law the surgeon tried to reassure me that it was probably nothing..but did detail the worst possible scenarios.  The test was on Thursday of last week and I will have the results next week sometime. I was able to get the tech to divulge what she saw..even though she was not supposed to.   According to her there was nothing of real concern..I am hoping she is right.  I also convinced her to run an additional test on my arteries that I was not scheduled for..don't know who is going to pay for it..but it is done.

Just an example of how freaked out I was by the upcoming tests..I bought a new 29 inch mountain bike on the day before my physical.  I have yet to even put the front tire on it and ride.

Ben and Adrianne got to go with me to pick it up at Kompetitive Edge. They even got to see the new Kompetitive Edge ride before it was made public.

By the way..the new bike is still a bit of a controversy..I have had experts weigh in on both sides regarding a fat ass like me riding a carbon frame. Ryan at KE says it is perfect for me..while others I know are taking bets on how long I have it before I snap the carbon.  My friends Jen and Scott Think it will be about the fifth ride.   I'll give a review of the bike when I actually ride it.

To add to the rest of the issues that have plagued me the last couple of weeks our basement/bedroom flooded necessitating that  I remove the carpet..drywall and wood burning stove.  I am still in the middle of this project.

half way through stove and brick demo
Demo mostly to put it back together.
Like I said. 2013 has been a very hard year.  The challenges keep mounting.  However there is one thing I am thankful friends and family.  No matter what the challenge there is someone standing with an outreached hand.  Obviously there is my wife and daughter who are there everyday through thick and thin as well as my immediate family.  My friends and extended family like all my great cousins who help mourn and remember the happy times.  Old friends like Trent who just reach out with a hello. Or others like Greg who sees I am back in Racine and extends an invitation to train with him or John to have a drink. Unfortunately I was unable to hang out with any of these guys due to my time constraints..but I will do so in the is short.  Then there are old friends who comfort me..even though when I am training I tend to neglect them..thanks..Joel..Dawn Marie..Todd..August..but they were therefor me two minutes after I started freaking about my heart tests.  I think my brother Ben gave Joel the biggest compliment..saying he felt like he had known Joel for ten years even though he just met him.

Ben and Joel sipping some homemade whiskey as they try and talk me off the roof

  And other friends that are helping me piece my house back together like Todd, Steve and Lisa. I also have new friends that give me advice on everything from carbon the best pedals to buy..and just listening to my bull crap whining..knowing when to say its ok..and also suck it up buttercup.  As well as all my facebook friends that comment at just right time to put a smile on my face. The last few weeks have also taught me to reach out to others I have not talked to and hopefully become someone they can rely on to talk about their trials and tribulations.

This week I am hoping to connect with some people I haven't in a few my coach Jen and training partner Doreen.   

So I had to edit my post since I was reminded by somebody about the training injuries I sustained the last two weeks which I should probably update everyone on.  The first was to my left hand..I thought I actually broke a bone in the hand it hurt so bad and swelled up.  I was doing some over exuberant cardio and hit my hand on the door knob in my office.  My 5 year old had challenged me to a dance off on the xbox...Pump It..

Even though I was in excruciating pain I soldiered through and beat her..and then cried it hurt so bad.  However I do think I am over that injury.

I did also injure myself while doing doing a physics experiment.  Apparently if you exert great force upon an immovable object and that object then becomes movable..the force exerted will then find some place else to go.  For example..if you put a pick axe under a layer of brick and then pull that handle of that pick axe towards your jaw...the handle will actually hit your jaw with great forces once the brick comes loose..causing not only great pain to your jaw but also your fat ass to be propelled backwards up and over the rocking chair that you lazily did not move out of the room and onto the tool box and sawzall that you also did not move off the floor and out of the way..finally coming to rest in a heap with a look of astonishment and wondering if you are going to be able to eat solid foods for the next week.

I am still able to eat..which may not be a good thing..but the jaw is still a little sore.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Beef and the beautiful game

So how did the week with the inlaws go? Surprisingly I actually lost another pound instead of gaining.  This is quite the feat considering all of the baked goods which mysteriously found their way into our house. Even though I did not gain weight I did run into another issue.  I actually had a gout flare up.  I am already on a daily med so I didn't think I would have any issues.  However my right foot started hurting on Monday and then the pain switched to the left foot on Tuesday..the same way all my gout attacks have occurred.  If I had to guess what caused the flare up, it was the fact I was dehydrated from my long bike rides combined with my large intake of meat during the week.  Since my father-in-law refuses to eat ethnic food we more often then not ended up eating burgers.  Don't get me wrong..I love burgers and don't need my arm twisted to eat one...or even had pig parts to it...but there was a lot of yummy cow digested while they were here.

As you can see by the picture..There was an over abundance of beef on my tray.  However, I did eat sweet potato fries..which my coach said were healthy..(ok maybe not healthy).  Anyway..believe it or not I kept the diet in check except for the gout attack burgers.  I even was able to turn down bacon this week in all of its forms.

Seriously..bacon shakes and mac'n;cheese bites!!! Not to mention a grilled cheese sandwich with fried mozzarella sticks in it!

Instead I ordered this.

Yeah..I died a little inside when I did is what it is.

My daughter started playing the beautiful game this week. I did not play nor did I know anyone who played as a child.  We all played football..softball..volleyball..etc. Thus, I am not a big soccer fan to begin with. Actually, I can't wait to get my daughter into Lacrosse or ice hockey where she can start throwing some sticks around.  However, I did want her doing a team sport as soon as possible and this seemed to be the best option at her age.  I don't want her doing triathlons as a kid and becoming a self absorbed ass at such an early stage of her development.  I am not saying she won't be doing triathlons..she will. But I want that team dynamic first.

I knew that I was in a different world when I went to the first practice.  The parking lot was filled with Prius (what is the plural?  Pre-eye?) and the parents sure did not look like the spectators when I was growing up.  Instead of jeans and sweatshirts they were all dressed like they had just gone out running.  And they all looked like runners.  I'm guessing there was not one ex-football or ex-softball player in the bunch. The atmosphere was a far cry from when I was growing up playing sports or watching my brother's pee wee football games.  At the football games the parents were all screaming and cheering and getting into the game..there is no.."we are all winners" know who the winner is by who is still standing and who is on the ground at the end of the play.  We also had a few parents who kept score via beer cans. At soccer the parents all watched quietly from the sidelines when not participating in drills with the kids.

I was told there was no yelling at the kids during the games.  That's fine..I don't yell at mine.  So I was surprised when within the first 30 seconds of the game I was being reprimanded for yelling.  Apparently telling my daughter to get the ball (she was chatting with someone on the other team) was considered yelling.  Seriously??    However, things improved..and I smiled when my daughter passed the ball..thought that playing defense was the best thing ever..and started to tell her partner where to go to best receive the passes.  The games are two on two and the kids get a ton of playing time..I do think that they are doing this right. 

Girl has skills
Full stride
cheesing it up

Hopefully daddy can keep his mouth shut and not roll his eyes at Pascal faking a fifth injury because he is tired. WTH...and the parent doesn't say..get up and get your butt out there? My daughter smashed her teeth on the back of another kids head..fell to the ground..looked up and said.."i'm alright' even though I knew it must have hurt. was had by all. Laila even came up with a song to get her pumped up before games...Fly like a G6. And scored a goal.  She even screwed with my mind a little after the game.  We were talking and I asked her how she thought she did..she said good..."but we are all winners"   She must have seen the horror on my face ..she just smiled and said.."just kidding". 

Speaking of fun..How about some mountain biking!! I have not done this in a  while. So I packed up my bike and headed to Buffalo Creek to do some riding.  Which was fun..until I flatted.. Luckily I always come prepared..with two tubes...the wrong size....which meant a nice walk. Luckily I met some other mountain bikers who gave me a ride back to my car. I put the bike on the top rack and prepared to drive home.

On the way home I came around the corner to find this guy..
And five of his friends in the middle of the road.  I slammed on my brakes...and got to watch my bike fly from the roof top rack and land 5 feet in front of my car.  As I looked in disbelief at my bike laying on the ground I heard a thump on the passenger side door.  A deer had just walked into the side of my car.  WTH!!  I got out of the car..put my bike back on the rack..and locked it this time..and headed home. Luckily the cost to repair my bike was only $32..some slight adjustments and that was it.

I did go running again..actually a couple of times believe it or not. Sunday my coach had me warm up for 15 minutes before I ran.  Being the overachiever I am I decided to warm up by hiking up north table mountain and testing out my Scott trail running shoes.
Yeah..being a heavier runner I need to pack a lot of things.for a 20 minute run.....  water... sandwiches.. instead of looking like a runner I look like I am going off in search of Bin Laden. Next week I am wearing camos to complete the look. Needless to say I am an idiot..the trek up north table was more than 15 minutes and by the time I got back down my legs were so trashed my running was a slow slog..(slower than usual). white are your legs dude!!
part of the trail..nicer running down then up.

The hike up the trail started fine but it soon got crowded. There were actually a lot of mountain bikers.  I usually like mountain bikers..they are to train in groups instead of having to do their own "Stuff".  However..somehow the roadie element has gotten into mountain biking. As everyone is aware my pet peeve is people not acknowledging your existence..not saying hello or thank you when you step aside on the trail..etc.  Luckily for the rest of us, these self important people like to wear their uniforms..or "kits" so we can identify them.  I know what you are saying..but that is a generalization..and it is ..but I did a survey on my hike.  I classified a "kit" as a matching jersey and lycra pants..not the baggy shorts most mountain bikers wear.  Riders wearing kits went 0 for 4 for saying hello, thank you..or even acknowledging my existence.  All other riders went 11 for 12.  In fact the greetings included a "Go Badgers" and "F....em Bucky!"  As a side note the kit riders were all riding alone and there were two male and two female. Just sayin..don't need those roadie types on the trails.. A friend asked me..did you actually count?  Yes I did..kept track on my phone dammit.  This is serious stuff.

I hope everyone has a good week..Below are just a couple of pictures from our trip to Estes Park..a reminder of how beautiful Colorado is.
Rocky Mountain National Park

Close was about 60 degrees and sunny where we were standing.