Thursday, June 25, 2015

The real cost of being cheap

When I scheduled my flights for Fitbloggin', I worked hard to find the cheapest flight I could -- I was worried about money, and I didn't want to spend more than I had to.

This is why I was riding with my husband, who was so nice to drive me, an hour to the Detroit airport before the sun had even come up. On the way there, I got a call that said my flight didn't leave for almost 2 hours after its scheduled departure, which meant I missed my connection to Denver. I am still not sure what time I am getting to Denver, but I am going to hustle to the first flight leaving after I land and try to go standby. Otherwise I have to wait until 1:30 for a confirmed seat.  

Update: No LUV at 9:40. 11:00?

When I took the cheaper flight to save $100-200, it's funny that I didn't consider my time, or my husband's time, or the impact on our sleep, or the fact that I would be rushing around. I just looked at the price tag.

I recently took a summer job that pays hourly. It makes it easier to see that my time actually has value, that making my (and Jesse's) life miserable for several hours is not really "free."

Airlines don't consider these costs either. They treat their passengers' time as free. Our flight crew got in late and rather than call in a different crew, this airline whose stock symbol is "LUV" delayed an entire flight full of people, making me and a bunch of other people miss our connections, to save whatever cost would have been involved in changing the crew while our group got their FAA-mandated rest. If it hadn't been for that regulation, our flight would have been staffed with dangerously-tired pilots and attendants.

For the way back, I was originally scheduled to land at 11:55 pm on a Sunday night. Since I work on Monday morning, I paid quite a bit to change to a confirmed seat on an earlier flight. I decided that it wasn't worth the wear and tear on myself and on Jesse to have no sleep on the way home too.

From now on, I'm going to consider all the costs, not just the financial ones. I challenge you to try to do so as well.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The hardest part of training

Tonight I tried swimming in my wetsuit for only the second time. I'm afraid it is a little bit too small, because getting the thing on is such a project. It feels constricting. I had a lot of complaining going on inside my head about how much better I would swim without it, how fat I am and how the wetsuit would fit better if I were skinnier, blah, blah.  I didn't feel natural and I kept stopping to float (which is very easy and why most people want the wetsuit).

I was convinced that it was taking me so long to swim, that I was at least an hour into it.  I forced myself to finish anyway because it would be humiliating to have to get pulled out of the water by a lifeguard.

When I finally got to shore I stopped my watch.

My time was right around where it was all last season. Sure, I cut a big corner, but if I had been able to just swim and stop talking to myself about the swim, I would have been just fine.

I texted my husband about it and he sent me a message I had to share:

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Enell Ambassador Race Report: Tri Goddess Tri

I am an Enell Ambassador. Enell paid my entry fee to this race and has also provided me with merchandise to try.  All opinions here are my own.

I had been looking worriedly at the weather forecast for the Tri Goddess Tri all week, and when I woke up to the sound of thunder and checked the radar, I worried that our race would be cancelled, or, worse yet, that we'd start and there would be dangerous conditions on the course.

I was meeting up with some friends from Team Endurance Fusion to do the race, and we got a picture in our matching team tri kits. It looks great, but I'm trying to figure out a way to keep the top from rolling up, as a belly shirt is not in my comfort zone. Some people have suggested snaps, but I haven't had time to figure that out. I wore my Enell Scuba Blue under the kit, and it coordinated nicely and provided extra coverage to avoid the dreaded Side Boob effect. 

I wish I had gotten a picture of the lake before the swim, but I was nervous about the rain and was rushing around more than usual. The start of the race was chaotic -- instead of designating waves, they had everyone start in two big groups with the directions to "self-seed" based on expected finish time. I have done other races where they do this, but there is more room for the athletes to organize themselves and some guidance about what a "fast" time would be. Trying to squish into a single-file line in a very crowded beach made me more nervous than usual. I thought I had done an okay job of seeding myself, but then the woman in front of me asked where the swimmers with the noodles for nervous swimmers were. I'm hoping they will do this part differently next year.

Once I started the swim, I felt better. My top continued to roll up, but since I was in the water and no one could really see, I decided to wait to pull it down until right before I got out of the swim. If it had stayed in place, I would have biked in this top, but since I didn't want to ride with my belly out, I put my Enell shirt, which I had planned to wear on the run, over everything and felt much more secure. The t-shirt kept the top underneath in place. Note the great support!

Photo from before the race -- I didn't have time to pose during the race!
The bike was my favorite part of this race. Even though it was still raining, I was able to get some serious speed in certain parts of the course. My overall pace was slowed by the number of cyclists on the course, the rough roads, and the slippery conditions, but I was enjoying the times I was able to really power along. 

As expected, the run on trails was a giant mud pit. I ran, walked, slid, and splashed my way through it the best I could. I slipped and fell at one point, but I saw the fall coming and was able to land without hurting myself in the squishy mud. Everyone seemed to be struggling, but one woman laughed and said it was like getting a bonus Warrior Dash for the same entry fee.  I heard thunder again when I was out on the run course, and though we had been told to run to the nearest shelter in that situation, I had no idea where I was on the trails, so the fastest way to get to shelter seemed to be to finish the race. Everyone else was doing the same.

I was excited to finish just under 1:45. Though I am currently 44, in triathlon you race as the age you will be on December 31, putting me into the 45-49 age group this year, and I came in 16 out of 23 in my age group. 

The best thing about the race was being there with friends and cheering each other on. Each of them achieved a personal goal during the race. Rebecca broke 2 hours and Karen placed in her age group. Even though this wasn't my fastest race, it was a fun one.  I was proud of how well we handled the challenging conditions.

Rebecca, Karen, and I mug for the camera.

Plus, I got a pretty new medal to add to my collection.

Thanks, Enell, for supporting me during this race!

Monday, June 01, 2015

Fit by Fitbloggin' update: A few weeks to go

I leave for Fitbloggin' in two dozen days! The time has rushed by.

I haven't posted an update in almost a month. In the meantime, I have been finishing up the school year, exploring new opportunities, training for my summer races, working on my Fitbloggin' talk, visiting with family and friends. I also am playing around with the konmari method, and have finally gotten rid of things that I was holding onto for years with the hope of "someday" fitting into them, even things that are way out of style. I have a lot more work to do on that front.

I have mostly been happy and busy. I have not, however, made the progress I had hoped on my weight -- I won't be thinner for Fitbloggin' than I was last year, though I would say that I am definitely fitter. Just last week I did nine hours of training -- though not the 11:15 my planned called for, still great in a week where it was impossible to get out and bike as much as I wanted to. I did two swims, two runs, three bike workouts, and a yoga class. Not too shabby.

The craziest thing is that before I leave for Fitbloggin' I will be traveling to the West Coast and starting a summer job that I'm very excited about, doing a training project for a Fortune 500 company.  So much stuff going on, and I will be spending this week getting ready for all that. 

I am sure that there will be some harrumphing that I haven't made my weight as much as a priority as the "Fit by Fitbloggin'" project would have indicated, but personally, I'm not surprised that my weight was up a bit at the end of the school year, and one of my priorities for summer is going to be working on that. As my training ramps up, just increasing my food quality a little bit and getting rid of some of the too-frequent treats may be all it takes. Maybe I will konmari my food as well and ask, before I eat something, "does this spark joy?" 

Looking forward to seeing some of you in Denver. 

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"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07