Thursday, September 19, 2013

Boring life

So my life is pretty boring at the moment.  I train, I work, I sleep, I eat, and I heal.  Sometimes not even in that order.  I'm 3 weeks in to my training for my races.  I've been throwing down the workouts left and right and occasionally they throw me down as well. 

So this past weekend, I headed down to Tauranga to cycle with some friends from when I lived there.  My friends have been doing a casual 100km loop every Sunday for a spell and many extended an offer to me to crash at their place.  I decided to take Martin up on his offer.  I left on Saturday after doing my morning swim and my long run for the week.  This week its 8 miles and that number will steadily grow over the coming months until our May marathon.  I was on the road at about noon after I showered and ate a quick snack.  I pulled in around 1:30 and was just in time for our 2pm ride.  Willie, Martin, and I pushed against the wind and the rolling road of Welcome Bay for 50km.  It was kind of surreal being back there and riding the road that I had ridden so many times last year.  It was fun to see the Mount in all its glory.   We do miss living down there quite a bit, but Thames is the bad town that everyone makes it out to be. 

Sunday, the Red Bike group ride consisted of 19 riders, several of which asked where I had been.  It was fun to get that type of recognition with the group as I haven't ridden with them since at least January.  Then again I rode a lot around Tauranga while I was there and I'm kind of memorable.  Not often you have an American with chops show up in your town and start to act like a local.  We did their typical ride which consisted of doing Armstrong Loop and then up Oropi road and then Welcome Bay then back along Papamoa Beach into the Mount.  We had a little break at Cafe Blend where I had a really nice chocolate caramel slice and a smoothie.  Then it was back on the bike to Martin's place, which isn't too far from where I was working.  So I took the same route I took for the entire time I worked there.  We had a nice little meal and I got back on the road.  Monday was my rest day and boy did I need it.  I rode just shy of 200km, swam 2100 m, and ran just over 8 miles.

This is the last week of Beth's vacation back to the US.  She had a few days in Vegas, then time with her family in Wisconsin, before rounding out the trip in Minnesota.  She'll be bringing back a few things with her, which will be kind of like receiving delayed birthday presents.  I'm busy with my 9+ workouts a week and waking up in the middle of the night in order to stave off my insatiable hunger.  Last night, I ended up putting my mountain bike down hard on the concrete.  The Mountain Bike Crew (Jason, Graeme, and Kim) rode out to Hikutaia on the rail trail in the fleeting sun only to be illuminated by an almost full moon.  We didn't need out lights until we reached Hikutaia.  On the return trip shortly after getting off the crushed rock trail, we were cruising at just over 20 mph and I got whipped to the ground while cornering.  I evidently had a flat front tire and my body got banged up pretty good.  I got road rash on my right knee, calf, and hip as well as a bruised left palm and 3 very tender fingers, which feel sprained.  It made sleeping a challenge and prevented me from going on my run tonight.  I did a quick warm-up but there is pain in my knee.  Well I'm off to ice it after my lame workout.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Another hit of K2

So the long training session starts tomorrow.  In reality, we kicked it off on Saturday with a little jaunt around the Coromandel Peninsula.  Several of my friends from Tauranga came up for a K2 training ride which by the bike computer measured in at 117.8 hill filled, leg cramping, and fortitude testing miles.  My friends have been logging a ton of miles over the winter, while I've dealt with some back issues and really only rode my mountain bike a couple times a week.  The ride provides picturesque views and stunning landscapes.  I was captivated last year while doing my first K2 ride and fell in love with the area.  Unfortunately, Beth has yet to experience the full peninsula,but we look to rectify this once she gets back.  Yesterday, she had the pleasure to drive up to the Coromandel Town to join us for lunch and ferry one of us back to Thames.   When I got back all I could think was that in 8 months, I'm going to have to "run" a marathon after the approximate distance I just biked.  I'm glad I have some time to actually train.

Where is Beth going?  Well she is visiting the US for 3 weeks.  She is meeting up with her friend Angi in Vegas, then back to Milwaukee to visit her family, and finally back to Minneapolis to visit my family and friends.  We also have a small amount of things that need to be picked up from the States as we have been stockpiling items at our families houses.  I'm a little jealous that she gets to eat at Chimborazo, El Taco Reindo, Punch Pizza, Ideal Dinner, and many of our other favorite jaunts in Minneapolis.  Then there are the ones that she wouldn't dine at, but I would like Big Daddy's BBQ, The Butcher and the Boar, and Zenbox.  When we visit the US together, I have a feeling that I might eat out every meal. 

Beth and I looking at the logistics of our standing trip we take every 4 years.  That's right, its time to look at World Cup.  We are registering for the ticket lottery and making our sojourn to Brazil this time.  We are also talking about re-visiting Uruguay while we are over in South America.  There is a pararillada that I'm dying to eat at located in Montevideo.  I would have hit it up in 2010, but we ran out of time.  Has it really been 4 years since we were last in South America?  Seems like we just visited Pete and Leeann there in the last couple years.  I guess I have no concept of time when it comes to traveling.

Last weekend, Beth and I headed to Taupo.  I was supposed to meet up with a co-worker for some snowboarding at Whakapapa ski field, but he and his wife ended up bailing.  So I ended up riding solo for about 4 hours.  Longer than I thought I would make it as I haven't boarded in probably 2 years.  My feet and calves were screaming at me.  I also had the coincidental meeting of an older couple on the chair lift and after a brief conversation I found out that they were also from Thames.  Not only that, but there is a strong chance that I ran with the gentleman on our Tuesday Night run.  With the early twilight settings I don't know everyone's face unless I have met them during the daylight hours. 

Last week, I had an interview up in Auckland for a developer role.  I let my current boss know what I was doing and he asked what he could do to prevent me from looking at the opportunity.  We are talking possibilities tomorrow.  I feel that my talents are being wasted performing only only as a BA.  After the interview, Beth and I went to a place that sells American groceries.  We purchased corn soft shell tacos, hot sauce, and a few other items from the States.  I could probably start an import company for other ex-pats that crave particular items.  It could go even further and I could start selling bikes!  I have several people interested in my Surly Disc Trucker.  They want one of their own.