Sunday, October 24, 2010


Fall is the start of a new season.  Leaves change, the air becomes crisper, football rules the weekend, Starbucks brings back their fall flavored lattes and the stores are full of our favorite fall foods - apples, pumpkins and squash of all types.   I LOVE fall.

Fall for me this year was also the start of my off-season.  After Patriots, I had planned to take some time off  "normal" training levels, get some much needed R&R for my body and mind and spend some time cross-training on the mountain bike and tennis courts.  Work, however, made my off-season closer to a complete break.  One work week in Chicago, nearly two extremely busy weeks in Germany and another work week in Richmond but with clients in town made training with any regularity nearly impossible.  I did manage to get a few runs in here and there, a mountain bike ride, a couple of bike rides and a time or two on the courts.  I also managed to find lots of German chocolate and six unwanted "off-season" pounds.  BUT no complaints.   The last few months have been a complete change of pace.  I got to see a beautiful new part of the world and even spend a fun and completely relaxing Indian Summer weekend at the beach with Bart, the furkids and the Oliver family.

Starting last Monday, it was time to start working out with regularity again AND get ready for my biggest change of the fall, training with a NEW COACH.   Monday morning, I swam 5:30 am guppies with ProK. Wednesday's workouts included a quick spin, my first TRX training session with SanDee and some fun doubles with friends.  Thursday - despite the sorest rear and hamstrings in a long time - I managed to jog four miles during lunch.  Friday, I enjoyed the flexibility of the off-season and took the day off and baked and cooked for the W&M tailgate.  Saturday - I got up early pre-game and did a 4.5 mile tempo run and today, enjoyed a gorgeous fall bike ride with friends and survived another session with the TRX.  Gradually, my muscles are starting to remember what a good sore feels like and my body and mind are ready and looking forward to start training again.

Friday also included a visit with my fantastic and trusted nutritionist, Tina Shiver.  I confessed my recent off-season sins -- namely too much sugar and wine, more dairy than my stomach is happy with and more meat than I probably ate over the course of three months this past summer.  Consequently, starting today, I'm on a one week detox (no sugar, no alcohol, no red meat, no tomatoes, no peppers plus my Inflamx protein powder) and then a gradual reintroduction to my primarily vegan plus fish eating.  Not a big protein eater, I was advised to "wrap my brain around" the concept that my off-season nutrition plan would include more protein and amino acids to promote recovery and support my strength building efforts.  While day 1, pretty much sucks and all I can envision right now is chocolate, I'm also looking forward to the way I know my body feels when I'm eating clean.

FINALLY, a little bit about changing coaches.  I am TOTALLY excited to be training starting November 1 with Jen Harrison!  While I made great improvements over the years with EF and Coach Michael, it was definitely time for a change.   I was ready for some new eyes, a new approach, and more feedback and communication with my coach.  JEN is energetic, clearly loves coaching and competing, is a VERY talented AG athlete herself (in my age group), has tons of triathlon knowledge to share AND very important for me, her current athletes LOVE her.   I can't wait!

Since she is a regular blogger herself, as are a lot of her athletes, one of my new goals of the season will be a weekly blog.   Hope if there are any readers out there still following, you enjoy!