Monthly Archives: September 2008

Letter to my GPS

Dear Garmin Forerunner 201,

Since I purchased you in 2003, we have had a good relationship, you and I. I could always count on you to accurately report my run data. Though you have always felt a little bulky on my wrist, I faithfully ran with you anyways. You were happy to tell me my exact distance and pace, and I never strayed for an updated model, no matter how sleek.

You even guided me through interval training of varying lengths, always cheerfully beeping at the end of the allotted time. You even congratulated me upon completion of key workouts. Never once did I feel our relationship was becoming rocky.

Earlier this year we hit a little rough patch. It was becoming more and more difficult to get you to charge your battery. Your poor connectors became corroded from my sweat, and only I knew the exact way to pound you on the floor to make the connection. I was not mad at you, for this was a design flaw that you couldn’t do anything about.

Sometimes it seemed it was taking you quite some time to track the satellites, even on a clear day. I know I may have said something aloud about throwing you in the river, but by golly, I never really meant it.

Things between us were going well for a good several months, so imagine my surprise back in early July when you refused to connect to the satellites for the first 22 miles of my bike ride. Incomplete data does me no good. You know I am anal and obsessive compulsive about tracking my workout data, so I took this as a big slap in the face. When did things go sour?

You must have felt guilty about acting out like that, because for the next few months you made it up to me by working flawlessly. Marathon training started, and we were on a roll, you and I. Then out of the blue several weeks ago, I noticed you were becoming less accurate in your calculations. The distances you were reporting to me were not correct, and you were having major trouble finding those pesky satellites.

Then came the last straw. You are now flat out refusing to even try to connect with the satellites. No one likes a quitter. Still, I wasn’t going to give up on you yet. I did some research on the internet yesterday and found out that your software was grossly out of date. For this, I am truly sorry. I got you all fixed up and updated to version 3.7 right away, and excitedly took you outside.

To my dismay, you reacted in the same way as usual. You did not even try. You asked me the same old questions. Are you indoors now? Have you moved hundreds of miles? Is today 11-sept-2008? I answered No, No, and Yes, as I always do, and still…nothing. I guess I am going to have to come to terms with the fact that you just aren’t that into me anymore.

This pains me to no end, as I cannot afford to upgrade to any of your big brothers: the 205, 305, or the 405 which I lust over madly. How am I going to know how far and fast I run tomorrow? How will I ever do interval training again? Who will tell me my current mph on the bike? I beg you to reconsider your decision to break up with me, I need you. There, I said it.



Ps. If you would just start working again, I promise to never stand on a street corner and call you names while you are trying to track the satellites. And I will never threaten to throw you into any body of water or onto the concrete sidewalk ever again.


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Grandma Seat

Yesterday I was feeling quite unmotivated to get in my workout. Having just registered for Ironman, I was surprised to feel this way, but it was raining and cold and dreary, and I wanted to lay on the couch. It didn’t help that my schedule called for 45 min of cross-training, which is pretty vague.

I had several conversations with myself about going to the Y, what I was going to do when I got there, and whether or not I should just lay down and turn on the TV. I concluded that if I am going to be an ironman, I better get used to motivating myself now. Come next summer there will be no negotiating of a 7 hour bike ride or a 2 hour swim. Ok, maybe a little on the swim, but you do not reach the finish line by skipping workouts.

With that, I had an idea. I would go to the Y and ride a bike for 45 min. But not the spin bikes with the pedal clips and resistance knobs, oh no. I decided to get on one of the “exercise bikes.” You know, the ones with the big cushy grandma seats and the ledge to set your reading material. Yes, that’s right, I brought reading material. I am a couple of months behind in my Runners World subscription, so I figured hey, why not kill two birds with one stone?

I spent 45 minutes doing “random hills” on this thing while reading. It was a different kind of workout to say the least. I still sweat my ass off, but it was kind of nice not focusing on the workout for once. In the end though, the big cushy grandma seat backfired on me, and I ended up with some inner-thigh chafe-age. I think next time I’ll stick to the spin trainer, and leave the magazine at home.

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Holy crap

I’m registered. September 13th, 2009. Holy sh*t, I’m actually going to do it!


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Between Seasons

Wow, I guess I suck at the whole blog thing lately. It’s been about a month since I posted anything, and though a lot has been going on, I don’t feel I have a whole lot to say about it.

I could report about my awesome trip to Washington DC in which my brute strength was able to keep this giant rock from crushing everyone in sight:

Or how my brother narrowly escaped being crushed by this huge boulder:

Or I could report about my subsequent trip to Door County for which I slacked on my photo documentation and have no photos to share.

But those things seem so long ago, a reminder that summer is coming to an end. Right now we are at the stage between summer and fall, where temperatures are cooler but not yet crisp. I’m sure I am being melodramatic and we will have a scattering of warm days ahead of us before everything turns brown and dies, I just hate when summer comes to an end. It means no more lazy days spent on the boat, and no more hot nights to lounge out on the balcony sipping wine.

There is an upside to all of this, and that is perfect running weather. It is no longer so hot that you actually feel your face pulsating with every step, or your skin scorching out in the sun. I got in a glorious 20 miles yesterday, which I will attribute to the weather. A ton of people showed up for the group run. It was the first time I made it to the weekly group run this year, and I forgot how fun it was. There’s something I love about what seemed like 100 people all getting together at 7am on a Saturday to crank out 20-22 miles. I was in my element.

After the run, I spotted Julia and Krista, and went over to say hi. Hopefully they didn’t think I was a creepy stalker when I walked up and said “Hi, I know you guys!” It’s weird when you only “know” someone through their blog, and then you meet them in person. Their blogs are two of my favorites, and I hope to see them running in the future, and maybe even get to know them a little better “in real life.”

Finally, a shout out to everyone doing Ironman WI today! I wanted to get to Madison to watch, but it wasn’t in the cards. This means I have approximately 24 hours to decide if I am going to sign up for IM WI 2009. I am leaning towards it, but I have a few reservations, namely the $500 entry fee. Oh, and the fact that I would pretty much have to give up my summer next year to train. Details, details…


Filed under Random Thoughts, The run, Triathlon