Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Positively Powerful


I learned a lot last weekend at Collegiate Tri Nationals. 

I learned about the importance of teammates - a lesson one can learn over and over and never know enough. I learned that even though I thought I shed the husky W - it's an identity that will never truly leave. At one point, during my second lap on the bike, I had just past an OSU Beaver and was hunting down a Cal Bear. You rower girls reading will understand my shock and glee when the first thought that popped into my head was "Let's go get some Bear ass!" That being said, those Bears were near me in transition and so friendly. 

The girls and I getting ready to race... after having been at the course for nearly 5 hours! All the boys raced before any of the girls' waves got into the water. This might explain the terrible run I had. Think sweat, acid reflux, over heating, chills, naseau and vomit. Oh heck yes I was attractive. 

But we all made it across the line with a PR. Of course, only I could manage a 10 minute PR and still find things to be pissed about. But that is why I love triathlons - not because of the disappointment, but because I will always have something to work on and work towards. I've really only done a solid 4 months of training, and in that time I focused on the bike. It was what intimidated me the most. My bike has improved by leaps and bounds, but my swim and run have suffered. Time to change the focus of training. I don't want to lose the progress I've made on the bike, but it is time to focus on the transition to running as well as being a bit tougher in the water. 

Gaining speed in the water is going to mean a lot of early mornings like this one! I've only been twice to the Harbor Island Athletic Club master's swim, but I have already fallen in love. The people are wonderful, the work outs challenging and the facilities aren't half-bad either! I had to lead my lane yesterday, and boy was that intimidating. I wanted to make sure I went fast enough and maintained the speed, but I didn't want to go too fast or cut rests too short either. I only got in 1,250 - had to high tail it out of there with my ride - but my heart rate was soaring and my whole body was burning! I swam so much better in the pool yesterday than I did in Tempe Saturday. It is frustrating that I can't seem to put it together for race day, but I prefer knowing that I have the speed and stamina and just have to find a way to tap into it on race day - rather than discover I really am just weak/slow. 

Everything I was supposed to do for school was cancelled yesterday. So I took the opportunity to get some gnarly work outs out of the way. My first couple bike rides after racing are always terrible. I think that is probably ok. Heading into the work out knowing it probably won't be fast and will feel awkward and being ok with that, is way better than expecting it to be good and being disappointed in myself. Since I knew I wasn't going to be impressing anyone, I opted for a short brick, that way I'd at least get something out of the experience. 

 An hour and a half later, my run-bike-run was complete!  I have another Olympic Distance triathlon in a week and a half, I need to get the bad out of the way so I can get some quality training in before St. Anthony's. I'm hoping a few bricks will bring my confidence back to the run, and maybe help me finally break that 3hr mark {and earn another PR}. 

Not only did a take 10 minutes off my Olympic Distance this weekend, but I also finally reached a nutrition goal I'd been struggling with for awhile. Many of you know that I had some pretty freaking awesome success last summer with AdvoCare and the 24 Day Challenge. Since then I'd been on and off product, but not really seeing much progress. In fact, after Puerto Rico I realized I'd gained some weight and only had myself to blame. Rather than blame myself and feel ashamed, I set to work. I had almost exactly 24 days between Puerto Rico and Collegiate Nationals and I knew I wanted to drop some weight. A friend and I started our 24 Day Challenge together, and I knew it was something I had to commit to this time. I am so glad I did. I wasn't perfect, I made good choices and some not so good choices. I don't believe in telling myself I "cheated." Instead I just think of nutrition as a set of choices, each with their own consequence or outcome. I can make choices that give me different types of satisfaction. Ultimately, the more healthy choices I make, the more satisfied I am in the the long run. And right now, I am pretty darned satisfied: 

{Day One}

{Day 24}

I have lost 7 pounds and six inches. I still see areas that need work, but I am so happy that my hard work is paying off. I feel happy, energetic and full of life. 

 I'm grateful to AdvoCare for helping me take charge of my nutrition, what you put in your mouth has a more significant effect on how your body looks than any work out. I'm excited to continue on my journey with AdvoCare, so that I can continue to gain speed and hit those PR goals!

Going to end with a few messages of positivity for you all today. As a fitness and running community we've been through a lot this week. This quote encapsulates best how I have always felt about running {but it breaks my heart that it takes a horrific tragedy for the quote to surface}:

"Rest assured, we will never stop running. Tomorrow, as we lace up our well-worn shoes, will be steady in our resolve. We will run for the benefit of our families, friends and -sometimes- total strangers. We will run to raise the bar - to redefine the possbilities of humanity and to set new expectations for excellence. We will run out of an unflagging respect for life, and our reverent obligations to it. And we will run bravely and courageously because - for us - running is tantamount to liberty itself. Runners measure their freedom in footsteps." - Larry Perez 4.15.13

Don't confine yourself. No matter the goal, no matter the self-improvement you seek, go out an get it. Start today. You aren't guaranteed tomorrow, just like you weren't promised today. Treat everyday like the gift it is, wherever or whomever you believe it comes from, for life is truly our most precious blessing. 

xoxo Sweat&Sparkle 


  1. As always you make me want to run harder, be better, and kick my ass in gear so I can finish my last term paper and get sweaty outside away from the computer!

    Thanks Sofia!!!

    The purple and gold runs deep, I think we've both taken what we learned and walking away stronger for it.. and running a hell of a lot faster!

    Hugs & Congratulations on all your accomplishments this year!!!!


  2. Thanks Jamie! Yes - finish that paper and get outside : ) I am so glad clinic is ending this week and I'll have three weeks of only class, finals and break to get after some solid training/adventuring!!