Thursday, December 06, 2007


Sometimes I feel like I'm being tested. Either that, or God is playing a joke on me. Right now, I'm barely hanging on. Honestly, I can't believe I've been managing to keep things in as much of a balance as I've managed. Let's recap:

Sunday Nov. 25:
After returning from Thanksgiving last Sunday (which I still need to report on--lots of stuff to talk about there), Jason and I hit the ground running, signed a new lease on our apartment, picked up boxes, and started packing.
Monday Nov. 26:
I actually managed to join up with my master's swim at UCSD before rushing Oscar to the vet. Dropped him at home, went to lab. Made it to my 6 pm massage. Thank God for small things. Worked all night to prepare for lab meeting.
Tuesday Nov. 27:
Biked on the trainer in the am (Spinerval Time Trial 2.0). It was really crappy but I got it done. Went to lab and gave lab meeting. It actually didn't go half-bad, if you can believe it. Squeezed in much-needed lunchtime Yoga. Left early to go see the podiatrist. Got the bad news about Oscar from the vet. Went for a hard, therapeutic 10K run in Rose Canyon, followed by weights. Spent the evening petting Oscar.
Wednesday Nov. 28:
Had to go to lab for a very important seminar. Left early to take Oscar to the vet and have him put down. Cars blared their horns outside in the frenzied mass of rush hour. It felt like I was dropping off the dry cleaning. Life doesn't slow down for anyone. This upset me. No moment of silence. I went home and continued packing to take my mind off things. I did my usual crossword puzzles to relax. One of the clues was: "Sesame Street Grouch." So much for taking my mind off things.
Thursday Nov. 29:
Tried to go to lab but couldn't stop crying. Life may have been rushing around outside but I created stillness and silence for 24 hours within my apartment, allowing myself to grieve. By the end of the day, I was exhausted and had a headache from crying. I cried until I felt ill. Since my day of crying, I've been able to hold back the tears. I don't want to cry anymore. It feels like dry heaving at this point. Afterwards, I slept in a deep, dreamless state.
Friday Nov. 30:
Woke up early and did weights. Babs and Taz played with me while I did my push ups and sit ups and bench presses. Went to lab and finished the rough draft of my fellowship. I should have been thrilled but I wasn't. Maybe it will sink in once it's turned in. It rained buckets all day. I've never seen it rain that hard in San Diego. Funny how my environment matched my mood. As if the skies were mourning with me. Maybe it was a sign. My stomach hurt all night, and I didn't get to sleep until 4 am. I had strong doubts about making my own bike ride. After 1 Pepcid, 1 Prilosec, 2 Gas-X, and 1 Immodium, I was good to go.
Saturday Dec. 1st:
It's December already. Life doesn't slow down for anyone. Began my long, weekend rides again. Today was the first official day of my training plan for IMAZ. I will post my training plan soon. Biked 40 miles around Elfin Forest and Del Dios. The creek alongside Elfin Forest was engorged and angry but the windy roads were surrounded by fresh grass and greenery. The earth was moist and smelled delicious. Del Dios was like a different universe. It had been torched by the fires. The rain had caused multiple landslides. The water in Lake Hodges was a sickly, radioactive green. The headwind and crosswind was particularly wicked, forcing me to use a deathgrip on the handlebars to stay upright. Black ash stuck to my damp face. I needed to see it. I hadn't ridden Del Dios since the fires. It's pretty tragic.
Later that afternoon, friends came over to view the airing of Ironman Hawaii on NBC. It was good to have a houseful of friends to make the place seem less empty.
Sunday, December 2:
Woke up feeling exhausted from a chronic stomachache that had been plaguing me since Wednesday (and all my happenings). Went back to sleep. Jason and I went for a 9 mile run in Rose Canyon, even though I didn't want to. We were SO good. We got it done. Afterwards, we dropped off more boxes (3rd load) at the new apartment, bought a bed, and picked up more boxes from lab. I spent the evening packing and explaining to Jason that, yes, it was totally justified that we were exhausted.
Monday, December 3:
Made it to the pool for masters swimming. Seems to be a bad habit I've fallen into--going 1x/week. Ugh. Went to lab, then my massage. Ran a ton of errands afterwards.
Tuesday, December 4:
Ended up just doing lab stuff all day and no workouts. Beat myself up about it. This was a real low energy day. I got a burst at 11 pm and finished packing the entire apartment. I do that sometimes.
Wednesday, December 5:
Missed my morning workout but berated myself onto the trainer that evening. The chill and gloom in the air as well as the early evening darkness is really getting to me. Plus, I feel hungry all the time. Hard to start a workout hungry. Anyway, forced myself onto the trainer for a Spinerval workout. Did the Time Trial 2.0 DVD again to see if I could make up for my poor performance last time. It still sucked but I had my moments. Afterwards, I realized I had the trainer extra tight on the wheel, creating more resistance. This cheered me up some. Followed up the bike with weights.
Thursday, December 6:
Slept in and missed my swim. Damn! Worked on editing the fellowship. Despite the gloom and impending storm, slipped out early to go for a 30-mile ride up the coast. Hammered on the way out to warm up, taking advantage of the tail wind. Fought the head wind on the way back. It feels SO good to go hard sometimes, doesn't it? Forgot my arm warmers so stopped at B&L on the way home to get arm warmers, knee warmers, and lights since it was getting dark. Also swapped out my beaver cleaver bike seat for a much more ergonomic one. Much better. Jason will be happy. Drooled over their carbon road bikes. Continued on my way home. Followed it up with a very nice, relaxing 4 mile run at a 9 min/mile pace. Felt comfortable. Rhythmic. My vision was soft and my mind was empty. I could have stayed there forever. It reminded me of why I like running. Time stops and I hang in the moment of suspension between each footstep.

I'm hanging on. I'm being patient. I'm waiting for time to heal my wounds.


Rainmaker said...

December's a tough month. I'm also frustrated by my inability to fully train (run) while I let my knee heal a bit. I know though that it will all payoff later.

Beth said...

a new bike seat? fun! new gear is good for motivation.
sounds like a really long couple of weeks. hope things slow down before the end of the year

Cliff Tam said...


Hang in there...Dec is a tough .wtiht he weather and busy-ness in our lives :)..

enjoy your christmas..

you still have plenty of time to train :)..err i mean to have fun!

Shan said...


(((Hugs))) to you - hang in there!! Sometimes stressful times seem to happen all at once, but remember that you're strong and will get through it.

I hope you have a very happy holidays :)

knapplaura said...


Hang in there! I am training for IM Arizona too, and I know how tough it is right now. Am having some struggles of my own. I am working on a masters degree program in Alabama and no one here is doing the race.

Long training around the holidays is challenging, but it will be worth it!


Lisa said...

Yeah, new gear is always a good fix. I hope things cheer up for you, man.

Ps- totally jealous about all the massaged you have!

Wes said...

You're a strong person, Rach! Life will settle back down again and leave you with nothing but the good memories! Stay strong!!

Mon said...

Wow! Do you ever stop to just "be"? You are always on the go!

Becki said...

I've been reading your blog for quite some time now. I just noticed today, and maybe you already know, but Women's Health Magazine added your blog to their "Blogs We Love" list! I thought that might bring you a smile. Keep it coming :-)