Monday, May 7, 2012

Eli and everything else.

So It has been a while since I caught everyone up on what is going on with our family.   Right now our life revolves around Eli and my triathlons.  I was supposed to do my qualifying race last weekend, instead I got sick, on my birthday no less.  I wrote about it here.  So much for our trip to Vegas.

As far as Eli goes, he is a lot more fun to write about so here are some pictures and updates.  Eli is growing so fast!  He is going to be a year old on Friday.  I can hardly believe it!  Where does the time go.  The last couple of months he has gotten VERY mobile.  He went from doing the head scoot to crawling, to now creeping around the furniture and standing up on his own without holding on to anything.  Here are some pictures of him from the end of February till now.
 Here he is playing with the blocks at Kangaroo Zoo. He is getting more confident creeping along the walls here.  This was about mid April.
 Eli has discovered that it is fun to throw things in the bath tub.  So lately we have been finding all sorts of things in there.  Everything from high heels, to phone chargers, toys, bathroom trash, and of course all the shampoo bottles.

 Eli sure loves to play with his Daddy.  Here he is climbing all over him and trying to get him to wake up. This is when he first started to be able to crawl over things.
 Eli loves to play with his friends!  Here he is playing with Evie.  He has come down with the grass is greener syndrome and likes to take away toys from other babies now.  Silly kid! It was bound to happen eventually.
 This is back at the end of February when he really started to get mobile.  He spends hours crawling through the T.V. Cart.  This bottom shelf is his favorite thing to play on.  I can't keep him away from it.
 He loves to play with the heater vent.  He will scratch at it for hours.

This is at Kangaroo Zoo mid march when he first started pulling up to stand.

 Eli has a fascination with doorstops.  He will go from room to room making the boing.  Anytime we go somewhere new, he has to find all the door stops.  It is really funny.  I thought about making him a t-shirt  titled Eli's doorstop world tour.

He spent about 2 minutes straight doing this.  I couldn't get him away from it.

 Eli loves Erik's video games.  It is hard to keep him out of them.  It drives Erik Crazy! It doesn't help that Erik is showing them to him and telling him how awesome they are.
 Eli loves the keyboard!  I can't keep him away from it.   I am going to have to buy him his own so he will leave ours alone.
 Here is Eli demonstrating his new skill of pulling up to the furniture.  This was back in March.
Eli has decided to start helping with the dishes by throwing all the silverware on the floor.  We have to blockaide him out of the kitchen anytime we want to do the dishes now, since he is a little too helpful.

Here he is trying to help dad fix the computer during general conference.  He is so cute!  He loves to help Daddy with what ever he is doing. He actually seems to have an aptitude for mechanical things.
Here Eli is covered in grease from my tri bike.  I can't keep him out of it.  Silly kid!  When he isn't playing in my bike, or with my cycling shoes and helmet, he is on the treadmill.  He is going to be an interesting hybrid of Erik and I.  He will be a dancing, people loving, politic loving, computer building, video game developing, triathlete!
Here is Eli when he first started being able to stand up back at the beginning of march.  He went straight for Erik's video games.  I warned Erik for weeks that he should childproof his video game collection.  He didn't listen until I sent this picture to him at work.  The room got childproofed real quick after that!

Eli's first St. Patricks Day and his first time getting croup.  The second one was not a great first for us.  Luckily we got him to the doctor quick so they caught the ear infection before it got bad.  Nothing more fun than a baby with croup AND an ear infection.

Eli is really getting into the GOP presidential debate at the end of February.  He kept yelling at the T.V.  It was really cute. Just like his dad.

Erik's brother Cody got married about a month ago(April 13).  It was the perfect opportunity to get Eli all dressed up. I think babies look adorable dressed up.  Eli looked so cute in his little suit!  He was pretty tired and grumpy during the festivities though. They all took place during his nap time.

Finally, here is our latest outing.  We went to the tulip festival at Thanksgiving point the 25th of April.  Eli had a ball playing in the dirt crawling around and going up his first flight of stairs.

Those are the highlights of the last couple of months.  Hope you enjoyed them!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

RAGE Race Report and Team fun in Vegas.

 So I wrote a great post about my race and Vegas weekend on our team blog, and don't really want to write it twice.  Here is a link so all of you can read it and see what a great weekend we had.  Enjoy!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Icebreaker Triathlon: Journey to Nationals

Do you ever wonder how your winter training stacks up, and if you are really doing enough in the “off season” to prepare for the “on season”? Well the first triathlon of the season will definitely let you know. This years Icebreaker triathlon was no exception for me. It was my first tri in a slew of races on my schedule this season and a pivotal moment. Why is this years “Icebreaker” more significant than previous seasons, you might ask? Because, this year being on a racing team I have the pressure and goal of qualifying for age group nationals in Burlington Vermont in August. How I do in this race will let me know where I am at in my training and whether or not I am going to make my goal. This race gave me a lot of information.
I unfortunately had been really sick for the last week and a half and had a death in the family, so I was not going into the race feeling top notch. I was nervous about how it was going to go since I hadn't done a real workout in a week in a half. That isn't a real confidence builder going into a race. The morning of the race rolled around and I woke up early since I was having trouble sleeping and got ready. I arrived at 6am to claim my transition spot, and was able to snag one next to my team mates on the rack right next to the bike out. I was pretty stoked because this was the best transition spot I have had in a race. I noticed when I was wandering in and out of transition setting up, that there wasn't any security there yet, and anyone could have access to the transition area. That made me a little nervous, but I figured security would probably arrive soon. I went and got my timing chip and got marked with my number and headed inside the fitness center to decompress. I headed to the pool and talked to some of my team mates and dipped my feet in the hot tub. At 7:15am hoped in the pool and warmed up for 15 minutes to relieve my nerves and warm up my muscles. At 7:30am I got out and got ready for the race. I headed outside for the pre-race meeting and joined up with my team mates and listened to the race directors make all the announcements. I really appreciated the sense of humor and all the funny jokes. It really helped relax me for the race. When I went back to my spot, there was finally security at the transition area, so I felt a little safer having my stuff out.
The Swim
We headed into the pool and lined up according to our projected times. The swim started and they started swimmers every 5 sec. I was impressed with how well organized it was and how smoothly it was flowing. The only hic up I noticed when I was waiting for my turn, was that lane one was really wide and lane two was really narrow. So there was some congestion in lane two. Fortunately for me that cleared up by the time it was my turn. The timer sent me off so I hoped in the pool and away I went. I had a really great swim and passed a lot of people. It was a real confidence builder since I was worried about my swim. I don't feel like a particularly fast swimmer and have had to work really hard at it. I finished my swim in about 6:30 and hopped out of the pool grabbed my towel and ran to transition while drying off. I appreciated how clear cut the path to the transition area was from the pool so there was no confusion. As I was running, I felt very fatigued and definitely could tell that I had been sick. I was very de-conditioned! I got to my spot and hurried to get ready. I was pretty stoked to try out my new Cannondale Slice TT bike since it was brand new. I haven't seen how she performs in a race yet, so here was my moment. I put on my shoes and helmet, and took off.
The Bike
The bike was a but kicker at the beginning during the big hill, but after that hurdle, I got in my groove and had a pretty good bike. I was really impressed how well my Cannondale was performing and how effortless the course felt on my new bike compared to my road bike. That bike made all the difference. There was quite a headwind on the alpine highway, so I didn't get to spend as much time in aero position as I would have liked, but that is ok. I would have rather had the headwind going down hill, instead of uphill. I appreciated the traffic control and how smoothly it made my bike portion go. I didn't have to worry about getting hit. So that was a nice plus. I finished the bike and came to the dismount area. I was directed by the volunteers where to get off.  They were very helpful in making things clear. I hopped off my bike and ran it through the transition area. The Bike portion took me 40 min which was about 2-3 minutes slower than I would have liked, but It was all I could muster.
The Run
I ran to T2 and got ready for the run and away I went. T1 took me 1:09 so I could definitely use some more practice on my transitions. The first mile particularly the big hill made me realize that I definitely need to do more bricks. I could definitely tell that I was still slightly sick, and I had to mentally talk myself through every step of the run. I eventually ran by the aid station grabbed my water on the go and headed towards the finish. My calves started to cramp up after I hit the Alpine highway, but I just kept pushing through. The downhill on the alpine highway made the run seem a little less painful and soon I reached the end. I sprinted to the end and finished strong and collapsed on the ground. I ended up finishing the run in 28:33 which was about 3 and a half minutes slower than I anticipated I would finish it in, but oh well. I did the race as fast as I possibly could have that day and was pretty happy with my performance considering all the obstacles I had faced the last two weeks. I received my finishers medal as soon as I crossed the finish line and a bottle of water. I really liked the finishers medal by the way. It is by far the coolest finisher's medal I have ever received.
The awards ceremony was fun, and entertaining. I had a lot of fun hanging out with all my team mates socializing, taking pictures, and comparing race notes. It is really a lot of fun doing a race with a bunch of friends and team mates and I am glad I got to participate. I am really proud of them. Six of our team qualified for nationals and almost everyone made it on the podium. I was sad that I didn't quite make it, but that's ok, maybe next time.
I ended up finishing 5th in my age group with a time of 18:33 and was disappointed at first but now I am ok with it. I figure all the obstacles I had, it was pretty dang good. My goal before the race was to get to do the race in 1:15 or under and get on the podium. I think I possibly could have made both of those goals if I hadn't had such a terrible week but that's ok. I think 5th out of 13 was pretty solid.
The thing I learned from this race is that I have some weaknesses I need to work on to improve and qualify for nationals. I need to do more bricks, and I need to do more hill repeats. I also need to practice my transitions a little bit more, and make some changes to my gear.
I also learned I have a lot of strengths that I was not aware of and that qualifying for nationals is within my grasp. I learned that I am doing a lot better than I give myself credit for. I was sick for a week and a half, spent the night before the race watching a grandparent die, and I still managed to show up for the race and come in 5th. I cut over 20 minutes off my sprint times from my last season, and came in top half of the pack instead of the bottom like I used to. So coach Keena's training is really working!!!! I realized if I keep working hard, I think I can realistically qualify for nationals next month. I just need to take another 4 minutes off my time for Woman of Steel, and Iron girl and I will most likely qualify at those races. So I will keep going with my training and work on my identified weaknesses.
Overall I loved icebreaker!  was a really great race to start the season off. I got to hang out and race with my team mates, see where I am at in my training, and get my feet wet for the season. It was a blast to do, and I will definitely be back next year. My overall impression of the race was very positive.  Other things I loved about the race included  packet pickup being all week long so you could pick up the packets at your leisure,  the volunteers were great, the course was very well marked and clear, the traffic direction was top notch, and I really liked the tech shirts and finisher medals.  I also appreciated that the race directors brought a spirit of whimsy and fun to the race. I will definitely recommend it to a friend.  

Saturday, March 24, 2012


My life basically revolves around two things right now, Eli and triathlons. Now that I have updated you about Eli, I will update you about all my triathlon madness.

 Back in December I joined a triathlon racing team called CK Elite Racing lead by world Ironman championship competitor(multiple times), Keena Shaerrer. She is an amazing coach, and just qualified last weekend for this years Ironman 70.3 world championships. She has given us all the goal to qualify for olympic distance age group nationals in Burlington Vermont in August. To qualify we have to come in top 10% of our age group during a sprint or olympic distance race. That means most races either 1st or 2nd place. There are a couple of races I am doing that have more people participating, so I would need to be top 15. In the bigger races, my times would still need to be as fast as the smaller races though. I need to be able to do the a 3.1 mile run in about 24 minutes, 12.4 mile bike in about 38 min, and 300 m swim in 6.

 I am currently training 2-2.5 hours a day with all the workouts Keena gives us. It is kind of a lot and sometimes is a little overwhelming, but it has been good for me. I have lost a lot of my baby weight,and gained a lot of fitness. But most importantly I have gained a lot of confidence seeing all the improvements I have made so far. She tests us monthly with the run, bike, and swim to see how we are progressing. The most exciting thing to see is how much my run has improved. As you all know, I have a herniated disk in my lumbar spine, so a lot of people say I shouldn't even be running. I have had to work up to becoming a fast runner at a slower pace than my teammates. It is sometimes very frustrating. If I feel my back start to twinge I have to slow down, otherwise I will do damage that takes months to undo. Not to mention the pain is excruciating. I will do just about anything to avoid it. So I have to listen to my body and slow down.

 I have worked very hard these past the past 10 months to get my abs and back muscles back in shape from my pregnancy, so I could even handle the run. When I started in December I was running 12 min miles and barely able to even get through 3 miles. I am now happy to report that I am running 8:20 miles and am running an ave of 5-6 miles each time I run WITHOUT ANY BACK PAIN! This is huge for me. It isn't the 7 min miles I was running when I was first in college, but I think I can get back there within the next 2 months. Regardless, I am getting close the running times I need to have to qualify for nationals.

 My first race of the season is next weekend. It is the Icebreaker put on by the Timp Tri Club in American Fork. I have been looking at my times and last years winners times, and I think I actually have a fighting chance to get on the podium and possibly even qualify for nationals at this race. I am very excited for next weekend! After Icebreaker I am doing RAGE in Las Vegas April 21, Irongirl in Las Vegas May 6, and Woman of Steel in AF May 21st. My goal is to qualify at Irongirl, or Woman of Steel. I think I can realistically do it. Hopefully I will be able to qualify at Icebreaker, and then I won't have to worry. If you want to follow my journey to nationals, our team also has a blog that we update.

The Latest Eli update...

So it has been a long time since I wrote on our blog. A lot has happened since Christmas. Eli has grown up so much. He is now 10 months old. I can't believe he is that old already! At Christmas he was just barely sitting up on his own. Now, he is crawling like a rockstar and creeping around the furniture. He will be walking in another few weeks, I can already tell. Before he learned to crawl, he would scoot around the house on his back and head. It looked so funny, but he got pretty efficient at it. He could get from one end of the house to the other in under a minute. Here is a picture of Eli at Christmas
Eli's latest favorite thing is pull all of Erik's stuff of of his shelves. It is pretty funny, because he leaves my things alone. Erik is really OCD about keeping his things nice, and will go to great lengths to keep his stuff looking pristine. Erik has been saying since I got pregnant how Eli would never touch his stuff and would be a good baby. So it is really funny that his stuff is the only things Eli is interested in. Erik has had to pack away all of his video games because Eli keeps ripping them all of the shelves and tossing them on the floor. The look on Erik's face was priceless when he caught Eli doing that the first time.
Eli also has been babbling a lot more. He keeps going dadadadadadada, so I am losing the battle. He is probably going to say Dad first. I keep working with him to say mommommommom..but it isn't working. oh well...I am glad Eli loves his dad so much. Here is a cute picture of Eli and Erik reading during nursery. We are nursery leaders in our ward so we take Eli with us, even though he is only 10 months old.
Anyway...that is the latest with Eli.