Wednesday, November 23, 2011

5 Ways I’ve Embraced Fall

5 ways I’ve embraced fall:

1.   Bring back the hoodie! Colder weather is the perfect chance for me to sport my favorite outfit - jeans and my Puke & Rally hoodie from Hood to Coast. Granted, I also wear this sweatshirt in the summer, but it comes out even more as the weather gets cold.

2.   Spending weekends at home. I was lucky enough to spend most of my summer weekends this year training in warmer weather. My friend Sydnie’s family has a house approximately 3 hours east that is perfect place to train without distractions. I was over there, even when she wasn’t, and able to log a ton of hot miles followed by naps in the sun, BBQs and early bedtimes. From early May to mid-September, I spent a total of 2 full weekends in Seattle and I raced Lake Stevens 70.3 during one of them. The rest of the summer was filled with friends’ weddings, races, and a trip to Vegas. But it’s good to be home. Seattle is a really wonderful place and it was time that I got back to my favorite local running routes, coffee shops, and Farmer’s markets.

3.  The 2011 race season had to end. It seems like I love my race calendar more and more every year. I have definitely shifted from racing anything within an hour radius to being more strategic based on my goals. 2011 was another great year! I set PR’s in all my distances for the third year in a row (amazing what a good coach will do) and it was hard to see the season end. But, I knew it had to. I spent about a month after Kona being really lazy and fairly gluttonous (for a triathlete! Hey - it’s relative.) And now I am focused on working on things (mainly my weaknesses) to get ready for 2012.

4.  Changes. Sometimes life is easy and everything is perfect. And sometimes life is easy and you think everything could be just about perfect, so you hold on to something bothering you instead of standing up for yourself. Fall was the perfect time for me to make a change and let go of what was bothering me. My friend shared a quote with me: “Giving up doesn't always mean you are weak; sometimes it means you are strong enough to let go.” Letting go was the best solution for me, even if it was the hardest.

5.  Seasonal reminders! Pumpkin spice lattes, fall colors…man, I love the fall colors, football games, tailgates…man, I love the tailgates, Thanksgiving, Halloween parties. And fall marathons – it has been great seeing all the runners on Lake Washington Blvd as they prepare for the Seattle marathon. Man, I love fall marathons. Here is my portrait of a perfect fall weekend: drinks with friends Friday night, a long run Saturday morning, tailgating and a football game Saturday afternoon/evening, and a ride on Sunday followed by Pumpkin spice lattes and seasonal cookies baked by yours truly. I was lucky enough to have more than one of these this year.
Even with the changes in fall and some sad news that I had to swallow, life is pretty great. I feel like the next year is going to be a tough one, on many levels. But I’m thankful to have a good job, a sport that I love, and friends and family who will be there for me no matter what. Happy Thanksgiving!

Best HTC team Ever!
Training weekend in Eastern WA
Finishing off my 2011 season in Kona

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