Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Sense of Accomplishment

Welcome back!  Soooooooo yesterday was such an amazing day for me!  I didn't win the lottery, or get a new hairstyle, or even a pedicure, but what I did has made me feel just as great as any of those things.

The day actually started the night before when I had a fabulous talk with my wonderful husband, Mike.  I've been consistently working out for over 4 weeks now, mostly 6 days a week if possible. Mike and I talked about that and how it is not only changing my life, but our life, our marriage, and how it will impact the lives of our children.  Harrison and Heidi are going to grow up experiencing triathlon races as a normal, everyday event that families do.  They will also naturally eat correctly instead of having to undo all the bad things that Mike and I have learned.  We pray that they will never know or learn of our former bad habits of over eating and not exercising.  Since I've been working out it has stirred in Mike a desire to work out too. I am so proud of him for making this commitment to himself and to our family.  Our lives are changing for the better and it is a wonderful thing!

First off, all members of "Team Orange" were heading into the city together to purchase the gear we would need for tri training and race day.  While getting ready I received a text asking which drink I would like from Starbucks.  What a perfect way to start the day!  Mike was already preparred to be SuperDad today as I was likely to be gone nearly all day shopping and then doing our timed test. I am so grateful to have a hubby who is so loving and giving.  Thank you Baby!

We went to BowCycle and I got road shoes that will clip onto my bike pedals.  From there I also bought a pair of fingerless gloves so that my hands wouldn't hurt while racing.  Next stop we went to Tri It, a whole store dedicated to the needs of triathletes.  Here I was fitted for race clothing including swim suits, one pieces, sports bras, goggles and the list goes on.  I would have loved to buy a new bra but spending $85 is not in our budget at this moment, especially since the race is still 3+ months away and my shape should change by then, too.  Maybe in August that is something I can look forward too.  I ended up purchasing a new set of goggles with large lenses, and a biking jersey that was on sale, and just happened to be orange! YAY!

From here we went for lunch at Julios Bario, a somewhat trendy Mexican place in very trendy Kensington.  The food was ok, nothing to write home to, especially to those in Texas.  It is sad that for 3x the price it really didn't even touch the quality and taste of the food at Rosa's.  Too bad.  Our next stop in our power shopping was at Swim Co. to find new bathing suits since the one I was wearing was a maternity suit (my only one) and it was nearly falling off of me.  I swim at least 3 time a week, so this was an investment.  I found one that fit awesome, was an ok color (black & purple) but the price was great.  I was so happy with this purchase.

Last but certainly not least was our stop at Speed Theory, where I was fitted for my new bicycle.  It is gorgeous and is so light I can easily do bicep curls with it!  And guess what?? The entry level bike, the Felt F95, just happened to be... ORANGE!! (with a little bit of white).  I was fitted and ended up needing a 52cm because my legs and arms are longer compared to my body.  It's awesome.  I am so very, very thankful for my coach who bought the bike for me as motivation to stick with the sport.  He is proud of me for training and working so hard to lose my "training suit", aka all the extra fat I've been carrying around for years.  I can't wait to pick it up in 2 weeks time.  They are special ordering it just for me!!  Here is a picture of my new beautiful ride:

My new bike, a FELT F95

To cap off our day, Stan, Heather and I set out to complete my first triathlon.  We wanted to time each section at a race effort and pace to get a realistic look at how I can train to improve by race day (August 8).  We did not do all the events in order though simply because we had to work around the lane swim schedule.  We started with a 20km bike out on Horse Creek Rd.  What a beautiful (and challenging) ride.  The winds were high and at our backs headed out but very strong against us on the route back.  This road is nicely paved and the vehicle traffic on the road is so used to cyclists being out there that they are patient and friendly.  A great first bike.  I'd like to state here that I have not rode a bike for over 5 years!! And to do my test I was riding my old Canadian Tire mountain bike that is rusty and too small for me.  It took me 9 minutes longer coming back than going out did because of the winds, but I finished the 20km in 1hr and 3 minutes. I can't wait to see what I can shave off of that time with my new bike. 

the view along our bike route

We quickly loaded the bikes in the car and jetted over to the river path to start our run.  If there is an event that I am weaker at it is definitely the run.  Right now I don't actually run.  I walk at about 5.5 km/hr and when I do jog it is only until my heartrate reaches around 165 bpm and usually that's around a pace of 9 km/hr.  SLOW.  This is mainly due to all my extra weight and lack of endurance.  This will get better, too.  I finished my 5km "run" in 42 minutes.  Most elite athletes complete the same sprint distance race (triathlons that I am training for)  in just over an hour (for women)!!!  I certainly have a ways to go!

Off we drove to the pool to get changed and start our laps. On an actual race day it is swim, bike then run, plus you transition from one to the other immediately, no driving inbetween.  Thankfully Cochrane is a small town and we weren't in the car for more than 5 minutes between events.  I finished my 750m swim in 22 minutes making my total time for my first tri in 2 hours and 7 minutes.

I am very happy with my first time and it sets the mark for me to improve upon.  I absolutely love the sport of triathlon, I am just sorry I haven't done it sooner in my life.  I really felt like I accomplished something today.  When it is pure human power driving your bike up the hills, you body through the water and down the trail, it gave me such a natural high that I may never stop.  And that would not be a bad thing!

Thanks for keeping us with our family! We love hearing from you in the comments! God Bless.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Catching Up

There is so much to write about I don't know exactly where to start.  Thank you for peeking in to see if I've written anything new.  I've been slacking on writing because I've been so busy in other aspects of life, I guess.

I have to brag on Harrison for a mintue.  The 3 day potty training was a complete success!  We started on Good Friday and by the following week Harrison was wearing big boy undies, with very minimal accidents, including days we have gone into the city for 5-6 hours at a time.  Now 2 weeks later he is going potty when asked, or telling us he needs to go, and he has been accident free for over a week now.  I am so proud of him!!  If any of you have children needing potty training I can definitely recommend the method that was recommended to me.

My triathlon training is going really well.   I am becoming more and more confident and comfortable in the water, finding a nice even rhythm with my stroke and my endurance is increasing.  I have swam 1000m, biked 20 km and walked 5 km consistently for the last week and I feel great.

Tomorrow is a very exciting day for me.  My coach, Stan, is taking me to a few of the triathlon shops in Calgary and I will buy some of the clothing I need for training and racing.  I will also be fitted for whatever size of bike I need.  My understanding is that it's mostly based on height and proportion, so we'll see!  The amazing blessing is that Stan is so excited to help me train that he wants to buy the bike for me and encouragement to continue towards my goal.  The big deal is that the road bike is around $1000 for an entry level bike!  Crazy!  It has always been Stans dream to help coach and train someone so it is fulfilling for him as well. 

I was watching a DVD of the 2005 Ironman Canada this week while I folded laundry (exciting, right?) and I cried my eyes out.  I don't know how much you know about triathlon and the Ironman but it starts with a 2.4 mile swim, followed by a 112 mile bike, and then a full marathon of 26.2 miles; distances that are totally inconceivable to me right now.  It is a grueling race that takes nearly 18 hours for the top athletes to complete.  So why did it make me cry?  Because I felt like it was speaking to my heart; calling to my inner desires to do better, to be more. To challenge myself.  I used to be fairly fit while in high school and very active and competitive in athletics but where did it all go? Realizing that those desires are still there, that they've just been dormant made me cry with joy.  The announcers were talking about one woman saying that she is peaking at her triathlon career at age 38 and I knew deep down inside that these athletes are all just human beings like you and I.  That if they can train and be disciplined, so can I.  I can do this!  I may never complete an Ironman but maybe I will.  I am leaving that as an open door and possibility because I have discovered the drive and fire that is still burning inside of me.

I have so much more to write and share but this will be it for tonight as it is already 2 am.  I am sure that I will be posting some photos of my new road bike tomorrow.  Tomorrow evening I am actually doing a "test" triathlon where I will be covering all the distances back-to-back, just like race day so I can get a benchmark for where I am at today and have some times that I can aim to improve on.  Lots more to share in the upcoming days! Stay tuned and thanks for reading.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Happy Keester!

Exciting times at the Burnett house these days.  Momma is keeping busy with triathlon training (only 129 days and counting), Daddy is busy with a few paper routes, Heidi is as happy as can be and Harrison is about to embark on a BIG 3 day adventure!
Potty training days have arrived for us. I am very excited to take this next step for a couple different reasons.  One, when you are living on a tight budget every dollar counts. Diapers are expensive, especially having 2 kids to cover.  The second reason is mainly because I think he's ready.  He is recognizing when he goes "pee-pee" or "boop" and of course, he doesn't like the feeling of it, which is a very good thing.  I am glad I am blogging about it the night before, not tomorrow after I've cleaned up 30 accidents.  Please pray that this is a positive experience for all involved and that I am consistent and patient with him as he learns to be a BIG BOY.  This method guarantees that your child will be trained in 3 days if you strictly follow the steps. I look forward to posting some good news come Sunday!

Other changes are on the way for the kids too.  Heidi has been sleeping in our room in her playpen but is sleeping well through the night now, so we are going to start putting her in her crib in the other room.  Since we are in a small apartment (and likely will be for awhile) both kids need to get used to sharing a room with each other.  I know it will be a good thing, eventually.  We may have some interrupted nights at first. I pray they surprise me!

The next big step will be to transition Harrison to a BIG BOY bed.  We will wait on this until potty training is successfully completed.  He is already such a big boy.  It is so hard to believe that Harrison turns 2 next month.  Wow.  It has been a super crazy year for our family and it is hard to look back and think that last year we celebrated his 1 year birthday with a pool party at our house in Texas.  This year we are planning on having a Cowboy themed party at Grandpa & Grandma's farm in Fort MacLeod.  It should be fun!

Other news for me this week was that I started my new job at Coffee Traders here in Cochrane.  I love it!  They are an independent coffee roaster and retailer.  I am working at the warehouse site which also sells retail items and serves coffee.  When there are customers I will be making drinks and serving coffees, but when things are quiet I will be mixing/blending beans, bagging beans, and filling warehouse orders.  The hours are absolutely perfect because I didn't want a 8-5 job where I was away from the house all day, every day.  For the month of April I start at 7:30am and work until the days tasks are done.  The retail part closes every day at 1:30pm, so if there aren't any other pressing tasks I go home after that.  If there are still jobs to be done I stay until they are done. It is so nice to come home (usually Harrison is still down for his afternoon nap) and have the entire afternoon and evening with Mike and the kids.  The owners are really awesome people too, which makes it that much better. I will be sure to take some pictures of the shop soon.

Enjoy celebrating the Easter holiday wherever you are.  Jesus is the reason we celebrate. He died on the cross so that we may all one day live a sinless, eternal life with our Heavenly Father. Do not take it for granted. Accept this beautiful free gift and learn to walk in the freedom God has given us.  Yes He died a grueling death on the cross but the best part is that on the third day He rose from the grave because death could not hold Him.  Jesus is alive today!! Let us celebrate together!!