Monday, June 27, 2011

Sleepless in Seattle

For Christmas I got my mom a Polar Heart Rate monitor and convinced her to sign up for the Seattle Rock and Roll 1/2 Marathon as something to train for. The incentive to go to Seattle was because my mom's best friend and my second mom, JoEllen, lives there and we thought we'd make a long weekend out of it. JoEllen and Doug also signed up for the race and then Whitney decided to join us as well...she had no interest in doing the race, just coming for the vacation.

As the race got closer, the number of runners dropped considerably. Doug was intimidated by all the girls, so he bailed and declared it a girls weekend. My mom injured her heel and ended up in a boot a couple months ago, dashing her chances of running. And then just 2 weeks before the race, after all of the training, JoEllen could barely walk with a hip injury. So I ended up being the lone runner. I felt bad that I was the only non-injured runner because I know what a bummer it is to train hard and then not be able to race, but we're already planning for next year.

I flew in late Thursday night and was met at Jo's door with a margarita...who cares that it was 3am my was girls weekend! After staying up really late, we got up the next morning and headed into downtown to pick up our race packets and then wander town. We wandered Pike's Market for hours. I love that place. It can be totally packed and crazy, but the rows and rows of fresh food and flowers gave me peace in the craziness.

And the street performers outside of the market were as entertaining as usual

Such a bike friendly/loving city

And apparently a gum-loving city

After wandering for hours, we went to dinner at a cute little Thai restaurant for a great pre-race meal.

The race started at 7am on Saturday morning, so the alarm went off way too early. Apparently there were 28,000 entrants between the 1/2 and full marathon, so the logistics of getting that many people to the starting line of a point to point race is crazy. Luckily for the race start I was in the third corral, so didn't have to weave through too many people in the beginning of the race. The clif notes version of the race are:

- Awesome course. Rolling hills, a couple bearish hills, but not too bad overall. Beautiful scenery.
- 1/2 marathon PR - 1:37:39 - Must have been the fresh Seattle air, perfect 50 degree temps and Thai food.

After the race, I quickly showered and we met up with Doug's cousin Laura and her husband Sam, who live in Seattle. We headed over to the Capitol Hill area where they were having a Pride festival, so we saw all kinds of amazing outfits, this one in particular.

Then we wandered around sculpture gardens and parks and embarrassed Sam and Laura with our cheesy photo ops.

Then Laura and Sam had us over for dinner at their swanky Seattle loft...I am totally jealous of their place.

Sunday was more sightseeing. We did the cheesiest touring thing I've ever done, we took a duck boat tour. It's a truck that can go into the water as well. So, we quacked, sang songs and learned history about Seattle. It was well worth it once we got to the water part, particularly because of the great views of the city.

Sweet houses on the water

Needless to say we maximized our time and had so much fun. We really lucked out with 4 days of beautiful weather, which apparently doesn't happen very often. I could see myself living there in a heartbeat!

Now I have two days of work and it's off to Cape San Blas to hang out with a bunch of old friends! I love summer!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Father's Day

I was lucky this year because I got to spent Father's Day with my dad! I can't remember the last time I've gotten to see my dad on his holiday, it's usually a gift shipped in the mail and a phone call to say hi. But this year, we ramped it up and had a great time!

This trip was good timing because Doug and I had ordered paddle boards a few weeks earlier and we got the call that we could pick them up this weekend. So, we packed up the car with the dogs and the dad and headed out to Jersey for some stand up paddle boarding action. My dad didn't know if he was interested, but after he got on and realized he was pretty good at paddling around around, he had a great time.

Little Dad on a big board

Doug was mastering surfing the waves from the boats

And I was just working on my tan

Family photo at the dog beach

On Sunday, we ventured into the city to check out the new section of the High Line - a pedestrian walkway built on the old elevated train tracks. The city just finished 10 more blocks of the walkway, so we had to check it out.

Cute purse dad:)

Lady Liberty way off in the distance

Amazing seating area

Quintessential NY in the summer

Oh what fun we had!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Happy Anniversary NYC

Happy 8th Anniversary NYC!! It's hard to believe we've been in each others lives for this long. We've had our ups and downs and I have my mixed feelings about you, but in general you're pretty great. Here's to us!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Black Bear Tri

My favorite triathlon was held this weekend and I did it for the 5th year in a row. Doug usually does it with me, but because of his crazy travel schedule as of late, he bailed and just came to be my paparazzi.

The course for this race is definitely the highlight. It's in a State Park about 30 minutes from our lake house in the Poconos, making race morning a relative breeze. The water is so clear you can see the plants at the bottom and the feet in front of you. The bike course is ridiculously hilly, like 2,000 ft. of climbing in 24 miles. And the run is all on can you beat that?!

Here is my story in pictures.

The water was a chilly 64 degrees, so wetsuits were a must. Once I got numb, everything was golden.

Like I said, the bike course was hilly. Even getting out of transition was a big hill.

A closer look at stank face

Legs on fire after the mountain climb on the bike

But I sprinted to the end and "chicked" that dude.

Pretty great day...I took 1st in my age group and beat my time by a couple of minutes from last year. Check out the size of this medal - are you kidding me? I would have rather saved $10 on my race entry.