Contribute To My Cause By CLICKING HERE!
As an ovarian cancer survivor, I will race in 50 triathlons in all 50 states by 50-years-old to raise $100,000 for ovarian cancer research. This campaign is self inspired, self orchestrated and 100% self funded. In addition, all in-kind donations are turned into cash donations by me in the same name of the person who donates. I race for women who have lost their battle, women undergoing treatment and women yet to be diagnosed.

Please help with even a $10 donation!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New and Improved

Check out the map... I am going to color in the states that I have completed. Truth to tell, it's getting harder to keep track. Looks like I am adding another TEN states plus Wash DC this season for a total of 11 races. I will be posting dates soon.
Can someone say sponsorship? Much needed as all of the registration expenses and travel come out of my pocket. But I know what I signed up for; time is of the essence. I lost 3 people this past season to this disease. We have to find a method of early detection! and fast!!
I am in the process of getting all my registrations in order. Several will happen on Jan 1 as that is when many races go "on sale". Should be a busy on line day for me.
Check back soon to see if I may be coming to your area.
And start spreading the word. OCRF needs your help so no one has to die from ovarian cancer.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pardon the Appearance

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all!!! I took several months off to regain momentum and allow my body to heal and now I am loaded for bear and up and, literally, running again. I am in the process of designing my race schedule for 2010 and hope to add TEN new states. That will keep me on track for the 50 x 50 campaign, racing in all 50 states by the time I am 50 years old. And by the way, I had a birthday last week so I can hear that triathlon clock ticking. Logistically it is quite challenging to plan so many out of state races; stay tuned for updates along the way. While this process is being finalized, please pardon the appearance of this blog site. It will be updated and edited as I add races but it may look a bit incomplete at times. I do know that the first stop will be Las Vegas in March. After last week's NY blizzard, it sounds might good, doesn't it? Thank you for your continued support and please check back frequently to keep track of where I will be and when.

Monday, September 28, 2009

This Is Why I Race

video

Last week I found out my friend's mom has been diagnosed with Stage IV ovarian cancer. They originally thought it was colon cancer and had been treating her accordingly. Upon further tests, it was discovered the source is ovarian. Such a subtle, sly disease. Masked as something else; not really showing overt symptoms; deadly. Her road will be long; certainly longer than if the cancer was discovered earlier. EARLY DETECTION... that's what it is all about. A method of early detection must be found so no one has to battle this disease. Funding is imperative as top scientists are working hard at finding such a test.

This past weekend I raced a very hilly 10K for Gisela in Northport NY. I pushed myself to the limit and everytime I thought of backing off or pacing slower, I thought of Gisela and what lies ahead of her. This race was for her.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Brrrrrrr... Baby It's Cold Outside

Downingtown, PA. Went to visit my college roommate, Carolyn. What a good egg... up at 4 am to cheer me on. Thanks roomie!

46 degree temperature at start. Do you see the hat, gloves, sweatpants. Brrrrrr! Major fog on the lake when we arrived but interesting phenomenon when we started swimming. 65 degree water temperature, thank goodness. Do you see the big cloud over the swimmers in the photo? That was a result of so much body heat in the water all at once. It just exploded into a haze once 700+ people jumped in.
Very, very hilly. Did I say it was hilly? Most folks walked up the hills on the bike portion. Do I ever LOVE my bike? She and I just kept plugging along, never got off to walk and averaged 18 mph. By the end of the bike I was so cold, I couldn't feel my hands and feet.
video

Trail run at the end. I am not used to that but it is the mountains. Had a hard time because I couldn't judge the rocks and stumps with the cold feet. Was able to put up a good time though. Took 3rd place in my age. YIPPEE! Great day overall. Thawed out on my car ride home. Took a well deserved nap and ready to do it all over again. Boy oh boy, do I love this sport!






Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Flying Through The Air

... with the greatest of ease. Isn't that how the saying goes? Well that was not the case 3 days ago. I had a big fall and it was NOT with the greatest of ease. I was out for a 6 mile run. It was a beautiful, early morning run and I was feeling terrific. My legs were strong and my stride was swift. I remember even thinking how it felt effortless. Before I knew it, I had tripped and was off the ground, flying through the air. What did I trip on, you ask? NOTHING! I just mis-stepped. Everything moved in slow motion after that. I had the time to think how much this was going to hurt but not enough time to react. I came down hard, scraping hands, jamming shoulders, twisting hips, pretzel like. What is it about pride that makes you look around to see if anyone saw? I quickly jumped up as if nothing happened and continued, limping, on my run. Everything hurt and blood was quickly trickling down my arms. Tenacious is my middle name and so I continued and finished the planned 6 mile run. I am so stubborn.
Long story, short, I am sore and healing. My training will take a bit of a hiatus this week as I continue to heal. Luckily I am nearing the end of the season so the pressure is off. I have to remind myself (again) that these things happen. Life gets in the way. And it is out of my control. I can have the plans in place, but then there is life that interrrupts and messes up the plans. Being the Type A, control freak, this lesson is hard for me. Maybe that's why I keep getting reminded of it. But does the reminder have to come in the form of bruises and abrasions?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Wetsuit Malfunction

video

Another state down... this race in the beautiful state of Maine. The Fireman Tri in Kennebunk. Tough surf with Hurricane Danny had the swim relocated. Click on the video above to see where we were supposed to swim. YIKES!

Did well, top 1/3 and 26th woman out of 170 overall. Had a little issue getting my wetsuit off. Minor calf cramping, shaky hands from the 60 degree water temps (it was MAINE afterall) and a large timing chip meant I could not get my wetsuit off easily. I was way ahead of the pack but watched a bunch of gals catch up and head out of transition to the bike course, while I still fumbled with the wetsuit. I made up some time but my T1 (time between swim and bike) was not very pretty. Oh well...

The cool temps of the morning (55 degrees to start) gave way to sun and temps in the 70s. The scenary was great and the town was lovely. It was a great race. Thanks to my friend Barbara who traveled with me from NY and raced with me. Thanks to local friends, Heather, Phyllis and Sue for coming out and cheering me on.

I love racing in other states but it is good to be home.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

A New Homeowner


It's been a couple of weeks since my last post. Life has been kinda hectic. I bought a house and am renovating it. Quite the process really. It's not my first home renovation but certainly the most extensive. We're down to studs as you can see.

Unfortunately, as exciting as this news is... it means that everything has taken a back seat, including exercise. I have a race next weekend in Maine but when life gets in the way, it is hard to balance everything. There are times when it is just impossible to do it all. And I am a "do it all" person. It's ok really. I write that more for myself than for anyone reading. I am certain I will do well next week because I have a lot of fitness "in the bank" but I doubt I will post any winning times. It isn't always about winning. It's the journey not the destination. I keep telling myself that. Even still, it is hard to not work out everyday and harder not to beat myself up for it. To make up for lost time, I ran 10 miles this morning. But once tomorrow comes, I am heavy into house stuff again.
When all is said and done, what will I remember? Will it be a few months of moderate exercise or the lasting feelings of a beautiful home? Seems pretty obvious to me.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Lazy Hazy Days of Summer

We are certainly making up for a mild start to summer with this August heat, at least in the Northeast. Whew! Unlike some folks, I don't perspire; I sweat A LOT. Makes it hard to breath too but it's great for "heat training". Given that most of the races are in summer months, training in high heat and humidity is good preparation for race day. In fact, given safe parameters, I try to train mid day a couple of times during the summer to simulate brutal race conditions. For me, being ready for whatever race day can throw at me, takes some of the fear and anxiety out of it.
One of my favorite sayings is "Any obstacle is the direct result of improper or insufficient preparation". Well doesn't that say it all? That saying is about so much more than racing, training and exercise in general. It's a saying for life.
So what it's hot out? Drink some gatorade, do a shorter workout, stay close to home, cool down easily and get out there and exercise.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

What? No Race? But There's A Good Story

After back to back races the last two weekends, this weekend feels kinda boring. I took most of this week "off" from exercise to let my body heal. It felt good but by this morning, I was revved up for a good workout. Ran 8 miles with a friend training for the NYC marathon.

I told my friend (Joanne) a story about my CT race and she thought I should include it in my blog. It seems that since I was on the cover of the local newspaper and the News12 crew was following me around, I was "popular". The women who were racked in transition near me wanted to know what all the fuss was about. I started describing my fundraising efforts, the 50x50 campaign and the need for a method of early detection and the crowd grew. The conversation then turned to symptoms of ovarian cancer and how to spot them. By the time I was finished, I had about 25 women around me listening and learning about the subtle symptoms of ovarian cancer. It was terrific. Yes, fundraising is important but carrying the message IS the most important reason I am racing. If each of these women tells ten of their friends, then 250 women were reached that day. Odds are someone's life will be saved by that. How cool is that? Thanks Joanne for suggesting I share this story.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Pre Race Training and A Soggy Day

video

The logistics of the NYC triathlon are amazing. Mandatory race briefing and bike check in the day before, tons of moving around the city from place to place, lots of anxiety and pre-race jitters... you need some levity to break it up. That's what this video is. I call it "pre-race training and hopscotch".
SO much to say... where to begin. Great day albeit a very wet beginning. Just as we left the hotel at 4:30 am, the heavens opened up and soaked us and our gear. Luckily I had covered my bike yesterday in anticipation for the atmospheric event. The photo shows the covering but also shows the race gods were with me... I got an end spot, as delineated by my race number. Total score!
Mild rain to begin and then dry, with cloud cover, for the duraction. We were very fortunate as racing conditions become dangerous with rain. We did have to delay swim start by 20 minutes because of lightning but no big deal.
Results were terrific. My fastest NYC finish yet. Getting faster with age? Hmmmm. What a thought. 2:45 which was 12th out of 76 in my age. Missed top ten by 30 seconds but I gave it my all. My mantra for the day was "Don't leave anything on the table". I raced as hard as I could and am thrilled with my day.
Gosh, I LOVE THIS SPORT!!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

8 Down, 42 To Go

video

The title might intimidate some folks but not me! The way I look at it, I have 16% of my goal completed. What a gorgeous day and what a great event. I didn't get a podium finish, although my friend Pamm placed 3rd in her age group. Slightly disappointed as I was getting pretty used to winning but the field was deep and FAST! I absolutely went the fastest I could and have no regrets with my efforts. Results are not posted yet but I am pretty sure I placed in the top 5. Norwalk CT was a lovely venue and as the race is very well established, it went off without a hitch. We got some great press on this one (newspapers and News12) so hopefully we get some donations to follow. LOTS of $5 and $10 donations is what we need. The microphone strapped to me during my set up was a little wierd. I told the camera man that I had to take it off to go to the bathroom... he understood. Lots of footage; should be interesting to see the final product when it is released tomorrow. Will try to post it for all to see, as it is broadcast in CT only. Mellow week ahead because the BIG SHOW is next weekend. New York City, Olympic distance, and all the Big Apple has to offer. But for now, it's time for some vanilla ice cream and an early night.

Friday, July 10, 2009

So Long (for now) to a GREAT Coach



I owe a tremendous amount of my athletic success to this guy. His name is Takao and he probably has no idea of the impact he has had on so many athletes. So let me take this opportunity to give him a big shout out and send off.

I have been part of a team (Team Total Training), based on Long Island NY, for about 3 years. But it was when I started working with Takao that things really started to click. From the time he video taped my swimming, right up until yesterday when he (again) corrected my swim stroke, my technique has continued to improve. I got the chance to take a couple of running clinics with him over the spring too and noticed a difference immediately.

Takao leaves to go home to Germany next week. His wife is due with their first child and heck, I don't blame him... he wants to be there. He is considering returning in the winter but right now, that feels like a long ways away. Best of luck to Takao and his family. But know this.... he has a lot of "family" right here in NY and I will certainly miss him.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Hills, Hills and More Hills

Just back from Ireland and boy oh boy, are my glut muscles sore! I live on the south shore of Long Island and it is very flat. It's the beach, after all. I frequently go up to Westchester to train and do some hill work. But it isn't with any consistency or very frequently. Having just been in Ireland for a week, with no access to a bicycle or water to swim, I committed to work my running discipline. I did three 10Ks while there and I am still feeling the effects of it. County Wexford is all hills.... long, winding hills.

For those of you unfamiliar with anatomy, the gluteal muscles are the part of your anatomy that you sit on. There are three of them (maximus, minimus, medius) and according to my anatomy books, my glut medius is the source of the grimace when I sit. I keep telling myself, it's all good. There is that "good pain" that comes from training, right?

Off for a 40 mile bike ride with my friend today. Pristine weather and a good route mapped out. It should be lovely.

Happy Independence Day to all!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Popping Over the Pond

I will be taking a few days off from training to head to Ireland for my cousin's 50th wedding anniversary. It is so exciting; I can hardly stand it. They don't know that my mom, my niece and I are coming so it will be a big surprise. I doubt I'll get any swimming in and I am not bringing my bike. But I hope to do lots of running on the back, country roads of the Emerald Isle. It's always a little bit of a concern... taking time off from training but I am in good shape going into this little respite. My next race is the 3rd week of July and my big race of the season is the 4th week of July. My "peak" is planned for then but you never can be sure of how that will go. You can only plan and do your best come race day. But there's a little bit of time between now and then and in the meantime, there is more family to enjoy.
Happy 4th of July to all and I'll write more when I return.

Friday, June 19, 2009

What's A Girl To Do?



No race this weekend... strange after doing 2 back to back weekends. Bordering on boredom? But rest is equally important in training. Not that I am the "rest" type but not competing is considered rest, sort of.
I had a great swim tonight at my local recreation center. I have been practicing drills because my swim coach, Takao, told me that I bend my knees too much. So I have been trying to kick with straight legs. Gosh, it feels so un-natural. Such a metaphor for life.... trying to re-learn something that I have been doing incorrectly for years.
More rain on tap for the weekend so bike ride is doubtful but I will get a couple of good runs in. Fun weekend planned. Going to visit my mom this weekend for her friend Petie's birthday party, and also going to a High School graduation party for my niece, Jasmine. A photo of her and one of her friends is included. She's on the right. My friend Abigail is joining me for both so a very social, fun weekend. So to answer the question... what's a girl to do without a race? I guess spend time training and being with loved ones. Sounds good to me!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Back to Back

Just came back from another race, this time south of the Mason Dixon line. Billed as a mountain sprint, it did not disappoint. Asheville, North Carolina is spectalarly beautiful at 4000 feet elevation. Flat calm swim in a 75 degree man made lake. Major climbs at miles 3, 6, 11 and 16 separated the pack on the 17.5 mile bike ride. Trail running around the lake, dodging tree stumps and creeks on the 5K run. Closest I'll ever come to Xterra on the run. FUN FUN FUN. Very different from the races I am used to. Quite challenging. Nice people, gorgeous weather, pristine mountain surrounding and to boot, I took 1st place in my age group with a 1:55 finish. The prize was a bar of homemade soap, as Asheville is a pretty big hippy dippy natural place. The photo is my fan club. My cousins and mom were present to cheer me on for this one and it made the win that much more special. A big shout out and a resounding "Happy Birthday" to my cousin, John. Love all you guys!! Thanks for the awesome cheering and support.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

And the Winner Is....

video


.... ME!!!!! I can hardly believe it but I won in my age group and was the 12th female overall. Must be the new bike color and the snazzy OCRF uniform. I didn't even feel like I had my best race but I guess it was good enough. The race director even gave a big shout out to OCRF and my 50x50 campaign. It got a huge round of applause and felt really good.

The video is of my transition area. I thought it would be fun to add a "training tip" since I have a few friends who are joining the sport this year. The pre race photo is taken at sunrise and the last photo is my podium shot with my award and a bonus container of electrolyte powder.

What a big boost of confidence for the altitude of North Carolina next week. Bring on those Blue Ridge Moutains!

Friday, June 5, 2009

The Time Has Come

First triathlon of the season in 48 hours! YIKES. Just like I wrote before the half marathon, I always get cold feet before my racing season begins. And COLD is the word for the weekend. I will be jumping into the Great South Bay in Islip and current water temperature is hovering just below 60 degrees. I had hoped to get an open water swim in to boost confidence but with the icky weather of the last few weeks and my dog's passing, it has not come to fruition. Oh well, so it goes. I have to assume most folks will be in the same boat. Anyway, I am using this weekend's race as a warmup, training race. The following weekend's race in NC will be bigger and harder, especially at higher elevations that I am not used to.
If you find yourself in the area of Islip, come on over to the marina and cheer me on. Watching a triathlon is always fun for all.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Good bye Sweet Girl

Meet my long time companion of 17+ years, Dagny. Yes, 17 years... that's not a typo. She was really old and up until about 3 months ago was completely healthy. Just goes to show the importance of diet, exercise and a healthy lifestyle.
Training had to take a screaming halt this weekend because I had to help Dagny leave her earthly body and move on to the next chapter. It is never easy being a pet owner because sooner or later, this time comes. It was one of the hardest things I ever did but it was necessary and peaceful; she died in my arms.
I was fortunate enough to have the vet come to the house so I didnt have to disrupt Dagny or torture her with a visit to the vet clinic. Towards the end she also hated car rides so this was definitely the better option. Dagny came to me when she was 6 weeks old and she has been my best friend ever since. I will be left with a large void in my heart. "See you on the other side, sweet pea."

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Isn't She Pretty

Meet my new shiny TEAL bike. Actually she is my "old" bike but sporting a new look... painted TEAL, the color for ovarian cancer, for this upcoming season and my fundraising campaign. I went out for a 20 mile ride today and it felt great to be back in the saddle. I have been training on my really old bike, which is 8 pounds heavier than this one. What a difference on the hills. A big shout out to Carl Hart Bicycles and Darren for helping to make this happen. He organized the paint job with a company in California and has been my "go to" guy on the project. I couldn't be happier with the results. Did a 40 mile ride yesterday too. My cycling is feeling great but my butt is sore. But that's all part of the training. Less than 2 weeks before the first triathlon. It is an open water swim on the south shore of Long Island in the beginning of June. What was I thinking? Water temps are going to be freezing! Oh well, that's what wetsuits are for.


Sunday, May 24, 2009

10 Miler is a Metaphor

.... for life. I ran in a 10 mile race today on Long Beach. Mostly flat, humid temperatures, small crowd and generally known as a "fast race". I really wanted to push myself and see what I could accomplish. There were moments of joyish abandon, being in the zone and feeling great. And then there were moments when my body wanted to revolt and went into a trance like state. It turned out to be brutally hard. I held a way faster than average (for me) pace for the first 6 miles and then I crashed. Not only did my body hate every step but my mind started winning the battle. I considered walking several times. My mind was telling me it was ok to quit. I had to combat the physical fatigue but I really struggled to win the mental battle. Isn't that what's life is like? There are times of joy and times of pain. It's what you do with those times, and the in between times, that matter most. Do I quit, give up the race and walk across the finish line or do I keep putting one foot in front of other and regardless of the pace, finish the race to the best of my ability? I kept saying, "I will just run the next half mile and then I'll quit"... over and over until a bunch of half miles added up to 3 and then 4 miles. Mile numbers 7 and 8 were the toughest but then there were only 2 to go. How could I quit so close to the end? Yet I had to keep fighting my mind. I even thought of quitting less than a half mile from the finish... it was that bad! But the point is, I didn't quit.
As it turns out, my time was really pretty good. My fast pace for the first 6 made up for my slow pace of the last 4. It all evened out in the end. Hmmmm.... another metaphor.
And I thought I was just going out to do a road race today. I didn't realize it was going to be a lesson in psychology.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

What I Want To Be When I Grow Up

This morning was a planned bike ride with my training team, Team Total Training. As the forecast was rather ominous and I am generally a fair weather cyclist (unless I don't have the luxury of cancelling), I decided to bail and swim instead. I went to my local pool and the senior team was working out. I had seen them before but never had an opportunity to train with them. I asked if I could join their workout and they were very friendly, replying with a resounding "yes". They briefly described the workout and I said I would "fit" in where I could. It's always interesting swimming with new folks. Figuring out where to seed yourself is half the battle but I decided to hang back towards the end of the line and test the waters, so to speak. Suffice it to say, I never moved up from the end of the line. Very humbling indeed.
There were 10 folks there, consisting of 8 men (ages 30 - 60 ish) and 1 other women, age 77. Now I am a pretty good swimmer and am usually in the middle lane with my team but these folks kicked my butt! I had to leave early but they were planning on going another 30 minutes, for a total of 90 minutes and 4000 meters. 60 minutes and 2500 meters would have to suffice for me for today. I was especially in awe of Barbara, the 77 year old. She swims with these guys 6 days a week and is really quite incredible. I can only hope that at that age I am still strong and eager to test my body in that fashion. How incredibly inspiring to be with these folks this morning. I hope to be able to join them again for another workout soon. They said I am always welcome. Golly, I hope I can get a nap in this afternoon. I think I am going to need it.

Friday, May 15, 2009

A Big Shout Out

OCRF has spent countless hours working with companies, in an effort to build relationships that can benefit both parties. One of their strong relationships is with Brooks Brothers. Clothing and cancer research? I was confused about the union too. However, it has been a win win since the inception. Brooks Brothers hosts shopping events in their stores (nationally) where a portion of the day's shopping goes directly to OCRF. Brooks Brothers increases sales because of the event, customers get discounts and OCRF is the beneficiary. What a great idea.
When they heard about my campaign, they wanted to do even more. Brooks Brothers has generously donated clothing to me for my races and interviews. I went in to the store last week for a fitting and received my box of clothes via Fed Ex yesterday. I am pleased to be wearing the clothes with pride and appreciate the support Brooks Brothers has given me and more importantly, OCRF. A big shout out and a big thank you!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Fancy Footwear

The generous folks at Crocs shoes donated a pair of their newest sports line shoe, PrePair, for me to sample. These are my feet. Do you like the polka dot socks? I have several pairs of Crocs already so I was happy to receive another pair, but was skeptical about the difference between their original line and the sports line. Big mistake! The PrePair shoe looks the same, for the most part, but the cushioning and support is completely different. I was out for a run and when I came home, my Crocs had arrived. I put them on immediately and felt a difference in the pressure in my legs and feet. I can really see how they will aid my recovery after a race. They also have more treads on the bottom, which works well is slippery conditions. Race sites tend to be slippery with morning dew so a sure foot is important. I think I am going to be really happy with these new shoes. In fact, I woke up this morning and put them before my feet even hit the floor. Thanks Crocs!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

A Little Rain Didn't Stop Me

video

Great day, great race. A little chilly, a little wet but wings on my feet. Had a very strong outing and felt good afterwards. Special thanks to some of my girlfriends who helped to push/pull me along. Quite possibly my fastest half marathon time yet! That cheeseburger I had for dinner was well (actually medium rare) deserved.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Butterflies

T minus 36 hours and I have to admit, I am nervous about Sunday's race. Weather is supposed to be a little iffy; rainy and cool. But that is probably better than last week's 90+ degree heat. It is always like this before my first event of the season.... butterflies. I did a short run this morning to keep my legs fresh and will just do some stretching tomorrow. Hopefully a good pasta dinner and solid night sleep and I will wake up ready to go on Sunday morning at 5 am. Alright already with the training and preparation... let's just race already!
I will race this weekend for two of my friends that I have met as a result of being an ovarian cancer survivor. Both have gotten some tough news recently. One of the ladies has just started a clinical trial for her next round of treatment and another is on "watch" because her numbers spiked recently. This is why I race; this is why I fund raise. This is why we MUST find a method of early detection. I will carry them with me on Sunday, as well as the women who have lost their battle and those yet to be diagnosed.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Record is Broken

WOW... what a weekend of weather! 91 degrees today; broke the record according to all the radio stations. Summer is here but wait, was there a spring? If so, I don't remember it. I couldn't wait to plant my summer flowers yesterday. Now my yard looks lovely.
Great 2 days of exercise for me. I have the LI Half Marathon next weekend so in preparation, I did a 12 mile run yesterday with my friend, Pamm. She and I will be running in it together. I am feeling pretty confident after yesterday's training. It'll be a light running week as I want to keep my legs fresh for next Sunday. Boy oh boy, I hope we have this kind of weather next week. I LOVE THE HEAT. No worse for wear after the run, did some great stretching and was able to stay awake until 10 pm. Ok, so I took a short 20 minute nap midday but that's not so bad. Today was a brick with the team. A brick is when you combine 2 of your sports back to back. We did a 25 mile bike ride with 5 intervals and a run after. I didn't do the whole run because of yesterday's training but that's ok. It is really hard to run after you bike; you go from one set of dominant muscles to another. The first mile, you feel like a spaz but then it starts to click as your brain catches on.
So that's the news. Hope you all enjoyed this beautiful weekend and got to play outdoors.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Let the Season Begin

What a great day for a race! I went to watch the Mini Mightman this morning; the first official race of the season in my area. This race is very special to me because it was my first race five years ago, my team sponsors it and because I have so many friends who competed this year. Two friends of note are Cammi and Charlie. It was Cammi's first race ever and she did great. Most importantly she had fun and can't wait to race again. Charlie is 10 years old (well, 11 next week) and competed in the kid's event. The results are not posted yet but I am pretty sure he won. WOW! I told him I see a pro triathlete in the making. How exciting that you can actually make a living in this sport now?! How far it has come in the 30 years since it started. I really enjoyed being a spectator for this event. It's always interesting to view things from another angle. I might have even picked up some transition tips by watching... Will have to test it in a few weeks when it is my turn. The main theme I kept hearing today was "It is more than just a sport; it is a lifestyle". Well, this lifestyle saved my life. Words can't say what this sport means to me. It's probably why I am so eager to share it with everyone else. Congratulations to all the athletes today!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Off to a Good Start

Yesterday, the email from OCRF went "live" and I wanted to thank everyone for the immediate response. OCRF raised $500 towards the fight against ovarian cancer within a few hours. We are off to a good start and I want to let you know how much I appreciate the support. We are still a long way to go from the goal but together, we can do it! Every little bit helps. Lots of $5 and $10 donations add up! Please don't hold back because you think it is "not enough". In an effort to get many smaller donations, please consider forwarding my link to 10 of your friends. That way your $10 donation turns into $100. It's all about the power of numbers and leverage.
To do my part, I participated in a running clinic this morning with my team, Team Total Training. It was windy, freezing and misting. Not the best weather for training. But train I did. Would it have been easier to stay in my pajamas and drink tea? YOU BET. But that's not what I signed up for. And while hundreds of women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer TODAY, I can at least say, I have done my part.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Confidence is high, Houston

In my last blog, I wrote how I was getting pre season jitters, concerned about my fitness level. Well, things are a little better on this Monday morning and I am feeling more confident. I had a great 10 mile run on Friday and another 6 mile run on the hills of Westchester yesterday. I think I am going to be in good shape for the new season.
On a much more somber note, I just found out a friend of mine, who I met as a result of mentoring through her diagnosis, was told her tumors have grown and she needs more chemo. THIS is why I race! THIS is why I fundraise! THIS is why I am passionate about finding a method of early detection and a cure for ovarian cancer! THIS is why I use my healthy body... to help the women who are struggling and who are yet to be diagnosed. It stinks! Her road is now longer and more frightening, after turning a corner last autumn and thinking the worst was behind her.
I feel so fortunate. How did I beat this? Why was I one of the lucky ones? News like this always hits me so hard. I will use this to my advantage; something good must come from it. I will train harder, race faster and carry her (and every woman diagnosed with ovarian cancer) with me every step of the way.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Gearing Up

Cant believe it but competition season is here! 3 weeks until my first event. It is ALWAYS like this in the beginning.... I never feel trained enough. It takes a while to build my confidence back and it doesn't really happen until mid way through my first event. Then cobwebs start to clear out, my muscles get into a rhythm and I realize that I am really not in as bad a shape as I suspected. The trick is the "peak" and coordinating it so it happens when you want it to. For this year, my peak goal is the NYC event in July. It'll be my fourth year and I would really like it to be my best effort. But I am getting ahead of myself. There is a lot of mileage between now and July. Speaking of mileage, hoping to get in a 9 or 10 mile run tomorrow before the rain. Happy Passover or Happy Easter or whatever you celebrate.

Friday, April 3, 2009

My Mission

Jenn Sommermann
Athletes share a passion for competition and fitness. I am a passionate athlete with a purpose. I am an ovarian cancer survivor deeply committed to using my passion for endurance events to help raise funds for life-saving ovarian cancer research. I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at age 42, and I am now determined to bring hope to the thousands of women, and their families and friends, who have been so deeply impacted by the disease, and to honor those who have lost the battle. I first learned about the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund after reading an article in Triathlete Magazine. The article featured the U.S. Women's Triathlon Series, now in its seventh year. OCRF is the official charity of the series. More than just a race, each event provides a supportive environment for women of all ages and athletic abilities. My goal is to participate in a race in every state. This year, I will participate in events in North Carolina, Connecticut, Maine, and Pennsylvania, in addition to four local races in the New York City area. You can't miss me. I painted my bike teal and will wear a teal uniform to show my ongoing support for ovarian cancer research and awareness. Please follow me and help to raise 100k for ovarian cancer research.