Friday, January 3, 2014

2013 Recap (3/3) : A year in pictures

Finally, my favorite post. This is where you get "the scoop" on my life, outside workouts and races. It's also a bit of challenge for me because the days/months/years always seem to go by too fast and I can barely remember what I had for breakfast. But the photos should be good visual aids, so let's try this (again).


Our little family goes on a trip to Disney World, with a stop in Philly to visit my friend Laura. I run the Rocky steps and feel like I'm on top of the world. I even get to meet Rocky, the statuesque kind. Then my husband goes all romantic on me because it's our 15th anniversary.
In Florida, I try to relax in between countless rides and lineups. Not for the faint of heart, this trip leaves me drained. Let's not do this again any time soon, okay?
Alas I don't get any downtime and I fly to Las Vegas for CES (work) without even coming back home. In total I end up sleeping in hotel beds for 20 days straight.
Once I get back home though, things return to normal. I enjoy cold baths because they keep my legs happy after running long.

At the beginning of the month we get our first snow storm of the winter and the kids go nuts. I spend one of the most frightening nights in a hospital with my older son, complete with ambulance rides, x-rays, CT scan and MRI.
I find myself trying to cope with a new sort of stress - caring for a hurt child. But thankfully running allows me to sweat it all out and ride the high of endorphins.
I buy my first bike trainer and start working out with Trainer Road. The Pain Cave is born.
I find on eBay a hat and scarf that I had bought in 2003 and lost the year before. Wearing them makes everything better.
The snow goes away as quickly as it came, and all of a sudden I don't need a hat and scarf anymore.

I lose my job and I get a lot of spare time to do whatever I want with in between sending out resumes. I get to travel to Philly again, this time to attend my friend's photo exhibit and spend some quality time with my camera and the trails.
I discover Blue Mountain coffee.
And Farro.
 And when I come back home, I taste my first ever AG placement medal.
Spring has sprung! There are flowers everywhere and I even take my camera out for a walk on the Etobicoke Trail to photograph the Sakura.
I run in shorty shorts for the first time ever. I am not convinced they are for me yet. Most likely, I need to lose some thigh fat for them not to ride up.
I try to stay away from sweets, so I sniff them instead. 
I also seem to like smelling the grass.
I travel to Muskoka to ride the 70.3 bike course and I treat myself with Kawartha's ice cream because it's THE Best Thing Ever and I deserve it, dammit.

We go to soccer games because we enjoy watching our favorite team lose. No, seriously, it's not like we have a choice. TFC sucks, we've never seen them win a game this year.
We also flaunt our tan lines.
And our wetsuits.
I ride my bike in the rain and learn to pee on it. Seriously, folks, it's a skill. 
I find a new job, very close to home, that takes me into a new direction. I discover the ups and downs of working in a big IT company. My free time gets reduced to weekends, and not even all of them, but I don't complain.

I bike the Muskoka course once more, this time with my friend Carol. In the rain, because it's so much fun.

More bike rides with friends, like this 100km one with Orville through the Hockley Valley and the Forks of the Credit, complete with suicide mission on the Hwy 10.
Miraculously we survive to tell the tale.

Another day, while biking through Caledon, I meet a beautiful horse on a walk with his owner.
Then I drive my boys to camp and I meet the cutest dog in the world.
Cuteness overload!!

I do a race simulation day with the coach and a bunch of folks from the tri club and I curse every minute of it. Heat, wind and way too many hills. Oh yes, I remember asking for it.
We travel to Mt. Tremblant to volunteer at the Ironman and we ride the official bike course (one 90km loop).
I like it so much that this happens. I sign up for the Ironman too!
My hubby buys me a new bike because there is no going back now.

We race our first Ironman 70.3 and we have the best day ever.
But soon enough I start missing my favorite lake and my bubble of bliss.
And things go downhill from there. I declare that I officially hate pool swimming.

We travel to Sandbanks with the boys for the weekend and we enjoy a long walk on the beach. Too cold for a swim, alas.
While training for the marathon, I do some trail running to mix things up, with personal support on two wheels. Despite his best efforts to cheer me up, that day remains pure torture. I had enough of running, biking and racing in the rain by then.

The racing season reaches an end with the Hamilton Marathon. I get to meet the #burlingtonskirtbrigade in their nude leg glory in minus temperatures. But they all warm my heart with their kind souls and laughs.
We take the boys away for another weekend and I get to recover from the marathon by climbing walls and wobbly structures. 
 And slowly cooking in the sauna.
On "mandatory fun day" with the office folks, I score a turkey, but I also bust my hip. I wake up the next morning with a bad cramp in my glutes.

A few days later, the pain in my butt turns into a full blown injury. I have to stop exercising, but after a week of intense physio therapy, at least I can walk. We go away for the weekend again, this time to attend my husband's office party. 
I visit the largest Toonie in the world, which unfortunately does not increase my fortune magically.
A few days later, as I start my holiday staycation, the ice storm of the century hits Ontario and destroys everything with branches that isn't bendy enough. Even walking outside becomes a dangerous workout.
I take my time and relax, and relax... waiting for things to turn around. 
Hello there 2014!! You're going to be good to me, right?

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