Thursday, April 23, 2015

Time to Tri!

Triathlon season is upon us!  Sierra and I have been waiting for this since last triathlon season ended.  Josh has somewhat begrudgingly been brought along since he went and won his first triathlon and earned a free entry into a race this summer.  Sedona joined the youth tri team this year, though she says she's not ready to race yet.  Yes, FOUR of us are in triathlon training at the moment.  We may need a second mortgage on the house to buy all the food.  So much food.  On the way to the grocery store the other day, Sierra says, "but we just WENT to the grocery store!"  Yes, but you all KEEP EATING.  ALL the time.  (Yes, the irony that I have two bottomless pits while I'm also consumed with the task of getting the third kid to eat at all is not lost on me.)

Then there's the laundry.  First you have the regular clothes everyone wore all day, then there's the workout clothes, and the towels from swim practice and the towels from showers.  There's a constant pile of tech shirts and run shorts and swimsuits.  The dishes aren't much better.  Three meals a day and at least 3 snacks makes for a lot of dishes to wash.  That is, when there's room for the dishes next to the insulated water bottles and the handheld water bottles and the water bottles for refilling water bottles.

Don't forget the standard tri first aid supplies.  Especially on the youth team practice days, we always need a kit that can handle a nasty case of road rash close by.  We managed to avoid it last year, but Sierra's already taken a bad spill this year when she got tangled up with another runner.  She handled it well and finished out the practice, but aside from that initial clean-up, we've had a couple "rip open the scab" moments, so extra large band-aids are always in the car.

The biggest change for me this year is training for the first time with data.  Since garmin released their 920 around Thanksgiving, we were able to get a refurbished 910 (with tri bundle, of course!) much cheaper than they had been in the past.  I'm kicking myself for not making this a priority sooner, it should have come before several other pieces of gear I've purchased over the last 2 years.  It turns out when I follow a heart rate training plan, I don't hate running.  I discovered I'd been constantly pushing too hard without ever going slow enough to build a good aerobic base.  Basically, every run was miserable and I wasn't making any progress, so I didn't want to do it.  Following a heart rate training plan, I've found I'm not tempted to cut runs short and even though I'm still very much slow, I feel the success of completing the workout as scheduled and I have a lot of hope that I will soon be faster.  I dare say running is......enjoyable.  It's also been great to have specific data on the bike and swim as well so I know exactly where I'm at and where I'm going.  I'm driven by reaching goals and this gives me concrete goals.  No more estimating and fooling myself, it's all right there in black and white and I know it's going to improve my endurance and speed.

Bring on the summer training days!!



Saturday, April 11, 2015

50 Books in a Year

I really don't know why I still call this list 50 books in a year, but here it is, nonetheless. You can click the links for the 20142013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 and 2007 book lists.  I try to read everything the kids read and it's starting to really show in my book lists.  *all images are affiliate links to amazon.

Past Reading
2006:  30 books; 8,222 pages

2007:  37 books; 14,326 pages

2008:  41.5 books; 15,072 pages

2009:  50 books; 16,199 pages

2010:  23 books; 6,843 pages

2011:  24 books; 11,981 pages

2012:  39 books; 13,790 pages

2013:  37 books; 13,930 pages

2014:  38 books; 14,375 pages

2015:
All the Light we Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. 531 pages.

dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris. 320 pages.

Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris. 368 pages.

Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris. 368 pages.

Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris. 352 pages.

Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris. 353 pages.

Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard Atwater. 139 pages.

The Fast and the Furriest by Andy Behrens. 256 pages.

Love, Ruby Lavender by Deborah Wiles. 228 pages.

Theras and His Town by Caroline Dale Snedeker. 208 pages. (this was a school book, surprisingly good. I highly recommend it for 5th-7th grade)

Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography by Neil Patrick Harris. 304 pages (really fun book)

Counting on Grace by Elizabeth Winthrop. 240 pages

The Teenage Brain: A Neuroscientist's Survival Guide to Raising Adolescents and Young Adults by Frances Jensen. 384 pages.

Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh. 369 pages.

The Thirteenth Turn by Jack Shuler. 368 pages.

Brain on Fire by Susannah Cahalan. 288 pages.

Breathe by Sarah Crossan. 400 pages.

The Door in the Wall by Marguerite De Angeli. 128 pages.

Resist by Sarah Crossan. 373 pages.

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. 272 pages.

A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck. 160 pages.

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin. 192 pages.

Fleabrain Loves Franny by Joanne Rocklin. 288 pages.

Beowulf: A New Telling by Robert Nye. 114 pages.

The Dorito Effect: The Surprising New Truth about Food and Flavor by Mark Schatzker. 272 pages.

The Trumpeter of Krakow by Eric P. Kelly. 224 pages. There are a lot of interesting parallels to Harry Potter

The Whizz Pop Chocolate Shop by Kate Saunders. 304 pages.

Glimpsing Heaven by Judy Bachrach. 256 pages.

Magnus Chase Book 1: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan. 512 pages.

Here Lies the Librarian by Richard Peck. 160 pages.

NeuroTribes by Steve Silberman. 542 pages.

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell. 528 pages.

The Adventures of Robin Hood by Howard Pyle. 214 pages.

Far From the Tree by Andrew Solomon. 976 pages. HALF BOOK. I have to add that I couldn't finish this book. I tried really hard to finish this book and repeatedly picked it up for nearly a year. I'm baffled by all the good reviews and think the majority of those must be from people who don't know about any of the conditions discussed. There were a lot of red flags for me in the Deaf chapter that this was a very biased book, and then I got to the Little People chapter where there were several "facts" that I knew to be false, so at that point I started researching and found I wasn't the only one with these concerns. This is not an objective book at all. There is an agenda and only one side of each story is presented.

The Wollstonecraft Detective Agency: The Case of the Missing Moonstone by Jordan Stratford. 240 pages.

Adam of the Road by Elizabeth Janet Gray. 320 pages.

Hope: A Memoir of Survival in Cleveland by Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus. 336 pages.

Allegiant by Veronica Roth. 545 pages.

Stones in the Road by EB Moore. 384 pages.

Girl at War by Sara Novic. 368 pages.

The Antartica Ice Marathon by Michael Amon. 75 pages.

Thru-Hiking Will Break Your Heart by Carrot Quinn. 370 pages.

A Season of Gifts by Richard Peck. 208 pages.

AWOL on the Appalachian Trail by David Miller. 352 pages.

Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews. 305 pages.

Monster by Walter Dean Myers. 281 pages.

Trail Mix by Paulita Kincer. 226 pages.

The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau. 352 pages.

Independent Study by Joelle Charbonneau. 336 pages.

The Reading Group by Elizabeth Noble. 429 pages.

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