Sunday, August 17, 2008

shanghai'd by the olympics

I love the Olympics. The amazing feats of sheer athleticism, the inspiration of all-out efforts, the grimaces as the athletes pull out all stops to attain a shiny metal disc and a moment of glory on a stand. I love the drama of the background stories that the media puts together, I love laughing at the obscure sports (and often giving them grudging respect after watching them), I love feeling the pain of the losers, I love the whole thing. What red-blooded human being doesn't love the Olympics, honestly? I think we all have at least one competitive bone in our body to which the Olympics make their siren call.

So the Olympics, as you might have guessed, have totally shanghai'd my last week and a half. Since we don't have cable, I'm stuck to whatever broadcast offers in the evenings, so don't picture me ignoring the kids and hubby all day and night while I keep up with all the events. No. And I still do have a lot I'm doing during the day, but the nights. I normally shut down around 10pm, don't function too well after that. Well, more than a few nights the past 10 days I am still cheering on the American swim team (wasn't that men's relay AWESOME?!!! Phelps rocks the casbah!!!) and the women's gymnastics and the volleyball and the marathon, and now track and field! I groan when I set my alarm as I crash in bed at midnight, but I still do it, more nights than not. I mean, it only comes around every four years.

I didn't think they'd suck me in so bad this summer. But my change in work schedule just prior to August gives me a little more time freedom, and then my parents invited us up to Sedona last weekend so the addiction started on Friday the 8th as we watched the opening ceremony stuff and then hours on Saturday watching the women's weightlifting and the dramatic beach volleyball matches, and I was hooked. Let's be honest, though. The addiction started back in the 80's watching my first memorable Olympics on our neighbor's borrowed TV (we didn't have one when I was growing up!). I joined the hordes of little girls that dreamed of being the next Mary Lou Retton, among other heros that paraded before our impressionable, hero-seeking eyes.

So that, in a nutshell, is where I've been the past 10 days. I have eaten, and worked, and slept. Have had to nap in the afternoon with the kids, for goodness' sakes, to keep this up! I mean, my own marathon training is taking it out of me too, I had a gnarly 16-miler at South Mountain this weekend, and got another ugly 20-miler coming up next weekend (they're all ugly after about 15, I start just slogging away about then). And I still visited my Grandma last week, and took the kids to a picnic lunch at Squaw Peak on one of the cooler mornings, and got surprised at my own birthday party (!), and went to Bible study and shopping and the rest of life kinda went on as usual. I'm not dropping out of existence, but I am wondering when I will get to bed early again.

You'll probably still find me in front of the Olympics again tonight.

Friday, August 1, 2008

...and "Medaling Moms"

I couldn't resist.
Vic found this MSN article on "champion moms...some of the women who've been able to give birth and gain athletic glory"
I like how the (male) author phrases that, like it's some incredible anomaly, or an oxymoron. Well, it sure ain't easy. Notice how more than a couple of the clips on the individual women mention plaguing injuries. On the other hand, there seem to be a lot more "medaling moms" appearing since the medical community decided to ease up on treating pregnancy as a debilitating medical condition.
Then I thought about all the moms I know and admire...all of you are champion moms! Anyway, I thought the profiles of these high-achieving moms pretty inspiring. So enjoy.

Excuses, events, an end of an era

Where do I start? Does it matter?

In the two weeks since I last wrote, I have been horribly sick for 3 or 4 days; visited a friend in Tucson; caught up 2 months worth of my husband's business finances; steam-cleaned my carpets; interviewed for a training position; went to a birthday party sans kids and stayed up til 3am; started intense weight training and longer long runs in preparation for my October marathon; ended one job and started another; and today I write this as I wait for my sister to arrive and drop off my four young nephews, who will stay at our house today and all day tomorrow while she is away.

That all just sounds like a bunch of excuses for not writing, however. Yet I feel as though so much has occurred, I have no emotions left to process it all. I mean, even the steam cleaning felt emotional. I don't think my carpets have been this clean since we moved in to our house eight years ago; maybe once before the kids arrived? That thought brings both happiness (my floor is finally clean!) and shame (think of the filth we've lived in!).

The intestinal virus I got left me so fatigued I couldn't drum up any emotions other than the hope that it would finally leave me alone to recover. I became so dehydrated my husband almost took me to the hospital. I thought of the large deductible we would have to shell out, and rallied enough energy to attempt putting down more Gatorade and fend off such drastic measures. Eventually that worked. This made the third time this year that I caught such a bug , and I'm ready to start eating Activa yogurt daily, or try colon cleansing, just to avoid another one.

Staying up past midnight for the party and the finances - well, if being sick taught me nothing else, it taught me that I cannot simultanously increase my marathon training and decrease my hours of sleep (and then add a playdate with friends recently ill). Note to self. Bad combination.

So that leaves the job change. Finished my last day as personal trainer at the corporate fitness facility of Schaller Anderson, now turned Aetna, in Tempe. I made some neat friendships in the past year; I am sad to be leaving them. However, I am trying to look at the positive. That was a season, on to the next. Maybe this is the opening I needed to pursue the writing career I've been slowly working on, as well as continue some training on the side. I'm excited to start working on the website copy for IronBody's new interactive website (see for the current site); and finish writing two booklets for my husband's coaching business (I also helped write copy for his updated website,, that premiers on Monday!); and maybe some more time to add to this blog, just for fun?? I love to enjoy all three of the activities I love - writing, running, and training. And then I think of the other, major hat I wear. Maybe I spend some of that extra time reading and playing with Jude and Audrey, who got a little ignored last month while I've worked and written and ran extra hours. I'll let you know how it goes!