Thursday, September 30, 2010

Cloud nine

Well, I did it. Third in the 2010 elite track nationals woman's omnium. It was a battle from start to finish but in the end i prevailed and am now basking in the glory. Sure it may not be a title, but it's my first legit solo podium and I am seriously just a wee bit excited.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Race day no. One

I am shivering as we speak from getting a twenty pound bag of ice and plunging in for fifteen minutes. BURRR!
But if it gives me some additional recovery the it's worth every agonizing shivering moment of it. Maybe next time I'll pick up two bags.

Oh this sport!

Now to the racing... It was a long day. We started with a flying lap and i placed 3rd with a 15.71, which in many ways has saved my butt in the overall. Next up this morning was a points race an 8 x 10 which was brutal. I placed 7th and that landed me into fourth. The second session had an elimination race and I just couldn't get in good position. Again i placed 7th. Then we had a 3k pursuit and try as i did for a 3:50 schedule, i just couldn't make it. But i tried my hardest and for not doing any any pursuit work - I'll take it! By the skin of my teeth I'm still sitting fourth with two events left. The scratch race first in the morning and then the 500m.

Wish me luck tomorrow morning! The work will be done in the early morning.

Peace out!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Good Omens

I had an easy rest day today before the shenanigans begins tomorrow. The morning had a recovery ride in it and then a trip to the track to drop Tela off for her workout. I then headed to Casa de Tripez (Ryan's Dad and step mom's house in Torrance) to do a rental car switch-a-roo. They were so kind to lend me their Passat Wagon this week while I'm in town and scolded me for even renting a car at all! They are so good to me.

Upon returning to the track to pick Tela up, I picked up my registration packet for tomorrow and low and behold - my bib number for the week? Number one. Oh yeah! Pretty stoked about that one. Good omen? You bet.

I found Jennie on the infield who also arranged a massage with her go to guy Doug - and got a fantastic pre race rub. His magic fingers did wonders and I've been floating on a cloud ever since. I'm feeling good and ready for tomorrow's battle!

And you can be certain - that bib number will be framed. :) I'm number one! I'm number one!

Monday, September 27, 2010


I'm resting between efforts at the track. This is my second time on the boards and I'm still hesitant on the top part of the track near the rail as the drop down to the apron seems miles away. I know that as the week progresses those insecurities will deminish but for now I take comfort in hauling ass up there. 

The constant hum of tires on wood fill my ears as the likes of Sarah hammer, the dr. Kay men's pursuit squad, Canadian national team and Kevin mansker pedal in revolutions, just to name a few. (for those of you who don't know who I'm talking about these people are world class cyclists and hopefully their prowess will rub off while I sit here.)

Monique Sullivan (can) grinds a 103" gear while being paced by an electric motor at Mach speeds as they prep for the pan am games in india which. They leave for on thursday. Friends are starting to assemble on the infield in what I deem the pressure cooker and while remained camped there for the week.

My second effort calls... And gear changing. Just thought I would give you a quick glimpse of what goes on inside the velodrome. More to come.

Ps la just hit records temps... 113. It's hotter than balls here.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mummer musings

Last night at morton's steakhouse in Portland, a long table filled with family and a few friends sat around and each shared a highlight of their relationship with myo grandmother. Dinner took four hours as no one wanted the evening to end. My niece and nephew were passed out on their parent's laps as the adults continued telling story after story of the amazing memories they had with both of my grandparents. I am really glad I stuck around for this unforgetable and memorable time.

Some of those memories include:
She always had lipstick on her hamburger...
Truly a lady with long fingernails that are jewels, not tools.
Always laughing and had a great time where ever she went.
Kept up amazing correspondence with over 40 letters a month sent out for birthdays, holidays, etc.
Always dressed to the nine's.
Had a thing about fingernails apparently. She told me when I was little that if I didn't stop biting my nails I wouldn't have any friends. Turns out she canceled my aunts first party when she didn't stop biting hers.

Those are just a few....

Friday, September 24, 2010

And we're off!

Day one of my mini-adventure...

It took me a little over three hours to pack last night for the next 10 days. In one bag were all of my skin suits, cycling paraphenila etc. In another was a bag full of things for the short but sweet trip down to Portland for my grandmother's memorial service. In a third bag I packed other clothing and grabbed four photo albums worth of memories to share with the family. And I can't forget the syran wrapped track bike in a cardboard box. At this point if I forgot anything I can certainly live without it.

I put in another solid two hour ride this morning from Tacoma to gig harbor and definitely felt yesterday's roller workout. The leaves are slowly changing to brilliant shades of red and yellows and I nearly have to pinch myself while cruising down a super smooth country road paralleling the Puget sound. I don't mind the little sputter of rain as I spin through what many would consider a rain forest. The pacific nw is an amazing place.

Now I wait on my little sister to pick me up and we head south to meet up with family we haven't seen in quite some time. It's too bad the only time we can find time these days to get together are only at life's major events. But at least we recongnize those and I'm looking forward to it and meet some of the newest family members for the first time.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


When I woke up this morning and carefully listened for a pitter-pat of rain and didn't hear it, then glanced outside on my way to fill the kettle with water for coffee and saw a gray, dry sky I couldn't help but get my hopes up. I placed a couple of phone calls to schedule a much needed motor pace session and then called the coach to find out exactly what kind of workout I should do since my original plan changed and it might stay dry.

I also looked on the radar and grimaced at a dark green/orange/yellow blob that was moving up from the south. Denial is a wonderful thing. Maybe it will blow by? Maybe it'll just stop right there and not hit the area and douse the track with precipitation? Maybe that orange means sunshine?

I was only 1/4 of the way to Seward on my morning ride when the first sheet of rain hit, spitting at first and then becoming a constant drizzle. By the time I got home, my butt was soaked, shoes wet, rain coat donned and I came to terms that today would hold an insane roller workout.

It's hard not to panic when things don't go according to plan. Especially right before an event that you've waited all year to have a crack at again. Am I doing enough? Am I losing my fitness?

But tapering does just that. It creates a little voice in your head that is hard to ignore. Suddenly you have more time on your hands since somehow you had adapted to the insane double day workouts and 98" gear efforts. And now that workload is cut in half and race gear feels like a warm up gear. What were precious moments of down time become huge blocks of boredom and all your body wants to do is move. I have tackled those pesky chores since I've had more time - mow the lawn, wash the car, organize a closet, knock out a list of self-prescribed honey do's.

This is the time when you place the biggest trust in your coach and training plan. All of the hard work, the hours spent pedaling, the dedication to solid nutrition, the weight training, etc - your homework essentially - comes into play. You couldn't cram fitness in right before a major event - it has to be accumulated over time. And you have to trust that all of your hard work will come into play next week.

And now for that 3x10 minute high cadence workout.... my roller mat will look like I left it outside. :)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


The original plan of heading down to LA today for a week of track familiarization changed as of 8am yesterday. Instead, I'm sticking around till Sunday to celebrate my grandmother's life with my family and training around here. Hopefully the weather holds!

It's hard to believe that this is the first day of fall. Yet there's a nip in the air that wasn't there last week, despite the rain and the leaves are changing to vibrant shades of yellows and reds.

Since there's change in the air - I've decided that it's time to paint the interior of my house. Time to spruce it up a little. Ryan and I painted the entire inside when we first moved in close to 10 years ago (whoa!) and it's time to get rid of the dark dark colors. I need more light in my life (especially with the dark months coming ahead).

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Life often has other plans...

I got the call this morning at 8am. My grandmother on my dad's side passed away at 7:30 this morning.

The tears didn't immediately start flowing. I ate my breakfast like normal, drove up from Tacoma and sort of listened to NPR. I got home, started looking into changing my flights and then just started bawling. The reality of losing immediate family came crashing in.

I know this is part of the process. This is the part of life that happens to everyone, no one is immune. Yet I can't deny the sense of loss and the sadness that comes with it, not to mention the big fat alligator tears. (Thank goodness I held onto those hankies from Melinda when Ryan passed.)

Death stirs up all sorts of grief - the reminder that life is too short. The reminder that loving someone is such a risk and absolutely worth it. And that you should be enjoying every single little waking moment of it.

And that family is so important to hold near and dear to your heart. We've only got one shot at this life.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Two more days and then Tela and I head south for some California sunshine! I sure am looking forward to getting out of dodge for a little bit...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Green blobs...

Here's an attempt to make light of the raining situation outside:

Last night marked the first Wednesday night cross practice out at the track, which means the track is now covered in grass and dirt from the entry and exit points of the track. Since it continued raining throughout the night and this morning - that means less clean up for us when it actually dries out!

I get to experience the pain cave on an indoor trainer. And not just any trainer - Jennie's BT wind tunnel beat down machine. Oh the joy!

I won't have to get my hands greasy today with changing gears (though I really don't mind that at all....)

No commute across 520!

I get to hope that it dries out for the afternoon prescribed motor pace session....

Can somebody please put up the billion dollars it will take to build an indoor world class training facility - please?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Game on!

Wow. Yesterday wrecked me. I woke up this morning with a sore jaw from clenching my teeth all night - not sure what brought that on? A cup of joe or two later and I was feeling much better. My work schedule shifted back to a later start - which gave me more time to mess around this morning.

Since I lent Chris my Redline Cross bike, I was in search of some sort of ride to commute into work on. I don't feel comfortable chaining my race bike up so I went deep into the recess of my basement and dug out my original bike. A 1996 vintage Diamondback mountain bike. Bought to commute back and forth to WWU when the mountain bike craze was in full swing - the very same bike that I commented to Ryan on our first ride up the hill to campus - "I'm just not made to ride a bike."

Ha! Talk about eating those words.

It's the same bike Dave took a digger on back in some Fremont bar stumbling days about 7-8 years ago... and it probably hasn't been ridden since. The tires pumped up though, I dusted her off and the shifting works great! Good as new. So what if the saddle points up at a 45 degree angle.

I didn't fully inspect it and as I zoomed down my drive way thinking, this could be dangerous, I nearly ran smack dab into my friend Jonah who was sporting a vintage Softride.

We chuckled at our silly bikes... his excuse being similar in that he needed a commuter bike and his father in law was willing to donate it. So if you see some guy cruising around town on a yellow softride - don't forget to yell - yo Jonah! He'll probably pull a "hi wayne" move.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Ouchie my legs hurt

I have now joined the high tech world. I still might answer my calls on a p.o.s. Razer phone that is held together with clear tape but I now surf the web on an iPad damn it. And How cool is it that i'm sitting in whole foods right now between track sessions surfing on their free wifi? Super cool. But seriously the only reason i bring it up is because it's a temporary distraction from the pain and suffering going on at the velodrome less then a mile away. Today I have double duty out there and in my short break, I just gobbled down a turkey sandwich and am now trying to divert my attention from the pain in my throbbing legs. Yowsa.

Headed back to the pain cave in a short few. This time behind a motor for some simulated points race efforts. Good times, good times.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Friday night was our last race night of the 2010 season for the Marymoor Velodrome Association. Many people are excited to hang up their bikes for the season and take a well-deserved break. Some racing die hards will eagerly jump into cyclocross season using the velodrome as a practice ground, especially for the upcoming Starcrossed race. The next couple of weeks the track will have mud caked on it and the Canadian geese will flock to the infield, leaving a wake of goose poop all over the sprinters lane.

This is when training gets tough.

The days are shorter, the nights and mornings much cooler and the predictability of weather impossible to forecast. And this year, there are only three of us heading down to represent Broadmark and vie for a National title, or two.

Thankfully the weather looks good for the week and those double day track workouts should happen without a hitch. It's the last final push before heading down to LA on the 22nd of September to put some time in on the boards down in LA.

I can count down on my hands the track workouts left for the 2010 season. Every year when the leaves start to change colors and the days are noticeably shorter, I get a bittersweet feeling. I love the feeling of the banking, the wind on my face and the strong headwind the swirls around at the track but will not miss the 520 bridge traffic.

I feel prepared. More prepared then ever before. The attention to detail this year has been taken to a new level and I am excited to demonstrate my ability.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

As I sit here, trying to figure out my failed logic with anything that has to do with numbers, and think back on my university years and a big fat fail in accounting... I can't help but wonder - why am I in charge of the books now?

It would be one thing if I continued to make the mistake each time, but no. I like making multiple mistakes and trying multiple ways to fix something.

Wow. Eighteenth time's a charm, right?

Yet another way to realize I'm only human and not some lame-o machine, I guess. :) As as much strength as I have in one area I have absolute weakness in another! Fudge!

Tuesday, September 07, 2010


Today marks the second anniversary of Ryan's death. As much as it is a sad event with lots of trauma involved, it is also a day of celebration. Celebration in remembering someone who lived each day to the fullest. Who made friends everywhere he went and liked to joke around. Who took climbing seriously and got just as excited when a friend on-sight or red-pointed something then his own accomplishments.

The past three weeks were rough. I was constantly bombarded with reminders of his absence and cried, a lot. I felt more alone and lost then I had since he died. But over the weekend, while in Mazama, a cloud lifted. What is normally a moody and difficult time for me - wasn't. I no longer look at Goat Wall with anger. I no longer look up its flanks and imagine what happened on that fateful day. I still wonder why it didn't rain that day - but know that those thoughts are pointless. What happened, happened.

So tonight I'm taking a brown bagged bottle of IPA, going to my favorite spot in the city and will celebrate Ryan's life.

Ryan Alan Murray Triplett June 5, 1977 - September 7, 2008

Thursday, September 02, 2010

9/2/01- 9/2/10

I remember on this day, nine years ago, we danced to this song holding one another, blissfully happy in a room of 150 people while they watched us sway. Despite the party crashers, eating nothing but merrion berry cheesecake and shrimp and having my mom intrude into the room later that night - it was absolutely perfect.

Now it becomes a distant and fading memory. But as I listen to our song, it whisks me back into those happy memories. Oh to have felt such love- it was absolutely worth it.