Tuesday, May 19, 2009

My turn at the Rez

I love the smell of neoprene in the morning. Some triathletes love the smell of chlorine and I've never understood that. Pool chemicals-gross-and so bad for you. I prefer the smell of neoprene because it means my wetsuit which means summer and the excitement of race morning and open water swimming without the limits of lane lines and walls and stinky chemicals and psycho overcompetitive triathletes tailing me and watching the clock and are we on the 7th or 8th 100 out of 12 and what was the interval again? I love swimming in the Rez, enough to get up at 5:30 a.m. so I can be there on time for my early morning masters group swim. Usually the water is freezing at this time of year but temps were in the 90's yesterday and more of the same predicted for today. I had Strum at the Rez last night for a swim session and the water felt o.k. but I didn't venture in past the shoreline so I figured it might still be cold further in but when I got in this morning I was shocked at how nice it was. Now it was not warm, I needed my full wetsuit, but it wasn't that horrible take your breath away, what the hell am I thinking type cold either that you would normally get this time of year.

There's always a tense moment when I have to squeeze into my wetsuit for the first swim of the season. Will it fit? Some wetsuits have a decent range of weights/body sizes that will accomodate each suit size but mine fits relatively closely and doesn't allow a lot of room for winter indulgence. Somehow though I manage to squish my butt in for yet another year. Phew, what a relief, those suits are expensive.

Usually my first open water workout of the season is spent swimming back and forth parallel to the shore line for maybe 10-15 minutes because for some reason I freak out the first time I'm back in the open water. But today I started right into the 900-1000 yard loop course with no fuss or muss. The courses vary so it's hard to compare but usually they take me 20-23 minutes or so. Today's took just over 19. Of course it could be shorter than normal but still I was pleased enough to be able to do a whole lap my first time out let alone at a good clip. I felt like a wuss getting out after only one lap but I didn't want to push it and poor Lola was in the car freaking out about being at the Rez and not being out in the water playing with me. She was barking when I left her and I hope she didn't bark the whole time I was gone. I thought Memorial Day was the cutoff for dogs being allowed at the Rez but when I drove in the sign said May 15th (oops) so she was S.O.L. I let her out at the entrance to the Rez to play on the grass there but it's not the same as being in the water. Maybe tonight I'll take her to the north side of the Rez which is open to dogs year round but fills up with naked hippies and rattlesnakes during the summer months so I don't like to go there normally.

I got to work feeling all relaxed and happy only to be greeted with the news that my swim coach's brother, Dave Scott, had been hit by a car over the weekend while cycling on a street in my neighborhood where I walk the dogs all the time. For the non-triathletes out there, Dave Scott is something of an icon in the triathlon world. He won the Hawaii Ironman a zillion times as a pro and continues to race and coach athletes here in Boulder and is an all around nice guy. His sister Jane has been the swim coach of my master program since I started a zillion years ago and though I thought it weird that she wasn't at practice this morning I didn't give it all that much thought. I'm not sure if she was missing because of her brother but it's not often that she misses practice. There weren't a lot of details about the accident, only that it was bad enough that he needed shoulder surgery and that there was a big dent in the car. The stretch of road where he was hit is a very quiet, low speed suburban road, not a place you would expect to get hit. Anyway, that was an unfortunate jolt to the morning and I'm hoping he recovers quickly.

In completely unrelated news I rode a new (to me) trail with some friends over the weekend up near Horsetooth Reservoir in Fort Collins. The Blue Sky trail is only a few years old and it was fabulous. Beautiful smooth single track, rolling green hills with red cliffs at the top, gorgeous wild flowers, quad busting climbs and whee-ha descents, who could ask for more? Unfortunately I forgot my Camelback so had no way to carry my camera and didn't want to risk it falling out of my jersey rear pocket so I have no pictures. Darn, I guess I'll have to go back to get some.

There was a USDAA trial this weekend that I missed for various reasons but mostly to save money since it would have required an overnight stay and I have to say I'm sure I had just as much if not more fun riding that trail than I would have had trying to drag Lola around an agility course in the hot sun on Sunday. I'm debating whether I should enter her in the July 4th weekend trial since it's usually so hot. I was only planning on entering Standard and Gamblers with her but maybe I should bag it altogether and spend the money on triathlon entry fees. On the other hand my knee has been so wonky I go back and forth about whether I should race this year and surely Lola would be o.k. with 2 runs for 2 days, especially with the first run of the day and it's only 45 minutes away. Ah, decisions. At least they are good decisions.

I have lots to write about Strummer's dogwalk but the internet went kaput at my house and I've sort of been enjoying not being on the computer at home so I probably won't have it replaced anytime soon and I've been busy on my lunch hours at work so not much time for blogging I'm afraid. This weekend's DOCNA trial should be interesting. Thankfully there's only one dogwalk in Standard to worry about if I keep him off it for Gamblers. This running dogwalk training has certainly challenged my training abilities and my sanity. Fun! I think.


  1. Sad to hear about the bicyclist accident. Last year a couple of cyclist were hit and killed on the road in the hills here, by all things a deputy sheriff on duty who apparently drifted asleep at the wheel. So a broken shoulder's a whole lot better than that. Not that it's good by any means.

    I can't imagine being without a computer at home. Although it might be good for me. Hard because I use it to work on, too. :-)

  2. I remember that incident with the cop killing the cyclists, someone I know knew them or had a husband on a bike team with them or something-Terrible!

    I have a computer at home, just no internet. I never noticed how much time I was wasting on the internet at home until I suddenly didn't have it and started getting all kinds of things done. I'm even in danger of finishing a book before it's due back at the library-shocking.

  3. The judges and their courses were great! But Sunday was too hot. Sage got an upset stomach from the heat and all the runs on Saturday so I scratched her on Sunday. In July, she is only entered in Gamblers and Snooker and the two tournaments which ends up to be about two classes per day.

  4. Poor Sage, I hope she's o.k.

    The schedule is kind of funny for that July trial, otherwise I'd enter the first 2 classes for 2 days but for all 3 days the second class is either Grand Prix or a non-Masters level class and I don't want to pay to enter Grand Prix so I don't know. I could enter Gamblers (1st class) and Standard (3rd class) on Friday then Standard (1st class) only on Saturday and go home after that. Or I could forget the whole thing and enjoy the July 4th weekend like a normal person.

  5. Your swim coach is DAVE SCOTT'S SISTER??? Yowza! I had to read that a couple of times to be sure I had read it right...

    I don't do tri's myself (although I might toy with idea of doing on Oly if I could ever get past my 1970s Red Cross swim training and run more then 3 miles at a time without withing I were going fast on my bike instead). But I certainly remember Dave Scott & Mark Allen battling it out at Kona several years in a row.

    We have an outdoor USDAA trial here over July 4th weekend that I've decided never to enter again. It's just too blasted hot and humid around here. There's no shade for the rings and barely any shade around them and it's just no fun for so many of the dogs or the people.

  6. Jane is really nice and a great swim coach. During the summer it's not unusual to see all kinds of 'famous' travelling pro triathletes show up at the masters workouts she coaches at the public pools and Boulder Rez.

    I guess living in Boulder you don't think much about seeing elite athletes. Dave Scott lives nearby and I sometimes see him riding about. I pass Frank Shorter's house almost every day when I walk the dogs and sometimes see him out running the trails. He had a little JRT with some issues at one point and he'd be out in front of his house trying to train it. Haven't seen the wee dog for a while so maybe he got rid of it.

    Jonny is always pointing out famous cyclists to me when they ride past while we're walking the dogs. I don't know who they are half the time. I like Tyler Hamilton though because he always smiles at our dogs-he's a dog person.

    Jonny often goes on training rides with Ann Trombley who was an Olympic cyclist. I 'rode' with her once for about 15 minutes then begged her and the rest of the group to go on, I was so slow.