Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Huge thanks to Joanne for shattering the field, I almost got boxed in and managed to break through, jump on the hill and sprint! The field was demolished, but I didn't bother looking back. Just behind me is the hard-charging Siri... the Norwegian Sensation! Man, oh man, can that girl sprint! She saved me late in the race, giving a nice strong pull and allowing me to recover a bit. I was so happy to look over my shoulder once across the line to see her smiling face! It is unusual to be able to give a leadout and then hang on to sprint for the next spot!

Safely crossing the line!

Happy Stage 1 / fusionTHINK girls, post race! Our unis arrive soon, until then, we're just bundled up and having fun hiding in the field(s).

Big ups to miss Joanne (on the left), miss Legs McGee, herself! Jo decided to launch a few attacks and try to break the current GC leader - sadly, she ended up getting used by her a bit... But Jo's tactic worked...she splintered the field, forcing everyone to chase and get tired on the last 3 laps - it was great!

After the women's race, I warmed up in the car, ate a poptart (sorry coach) and an hour later, warmed up for the men's race. I had Andrea Myers (pro roadie) and Audrey (another pro roadie) join me in the race and we sat in and chatted the 30 fast miles away! A nice 45 min. transition run to top the day off and then it was home for beer and Mexican food with the C-dale crew!

We're all looking forward to Battenkill in a few weeks - and a super hard Birthday ride on Sunday for my girl Joanne! - and a few more weeks of these girls-only races at Bethel. Stage 1 girls WILL go 1,2,3!!!


Friday, March 26, 2010

Tired legs

This is my running partner. Guess I'm training a bit more! She didn't
budge when I laced up my shoes... Looks like she'll keep warming the
guest bed until I get back.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


A huge welcome to my newest sponsor, Adina Holistics!

We finalized and inked our deal over the weekend and I could not be more pleased with our partnership! I'll be monkeying around at triathlons, bike races, trade shows and more! I'll keep you posted on exciting news within the company as well as hosting tastings at various events, including all of the EndureIT races!

Adina is a very cool new company with an even cooler concept: Drink no Evil. All of their products are created with the utmost care and consideration for your health and that of the environment. Organic, Gluten-Free, Kosher and based on the Ayurvedic Calendar all packed into a tasty elixir with - BONUS - recyclable packaging!

Click HERE to follow the Monkey on Twitter or HERE to check out their website!

Click HERE to follow me on Twitter!


Friday, March 19, 2010

Sittin' on the Dock

Well, more like "Sitting on the couch looking pathetic". Sorry for the lack of updates, what I thought were just some pool-related allergies have become a full-blown sickness...courtesy of my lovin' man.

We all get sick and there is really no good time to get sick. I like to say to people that there are "better and worse" times to get sick/injured/go through something crappy, but in truth, there's never really a good time... well, unless it is raining/sleeting/snowing/wind blowing 70mph outside...then it's ok get stuck inside!

It is not, however, ok to get sick when it happens to be sunny and 70 outside.

Ok, enough complaining, I'm on the mend, but I need to let my body do just that. Signing off until I've actually come up with something interesting and noteworthy to write about!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Watch my Stupidity in Action

I think Eric would say I was making the workout count :)

If you click to the next page of photos, you can see me sitting up, laughing and Miss America waving to the crowd rather than sprint.

Check out the photos from BicyclingImages.com HERE

Monday, March 15, 2010

It Must Be...

Tax season. You can feel it in the air. The line of sick people at CVS was overwhelming. The women's field at Bethel yesterday was thick with it and I was obviously not here to blog. Apologies, dear readers.

Training and business are both going well. Life, as usual (how cool is it to say that!?), is fantastic.

Last week I had a few days of really bad headaches...the turn off the lights and pull up the covers kind...This in no way could be related to my accountant calling to tell me that my Business (and Personal) taxes had to be filed by MARCH 15 this year, because EndureIT is now a Corporation.

Yup, excuses, excuses. Fast forward to Friday night - taxes done and good to go - a night out with [many] friends meant a nice late night. We awoke to rain on Saturday and while Sam went to teach Spin, I reveled in my extra hour of sleep.

Rather than risk: a. Sickness and b. loss of mental toughness early in the season, coach Eric had me ride the rollers and swim. Both workouts were fantastic and I got to catch up on some television while riding the bike indoors - for some reason, it makes it that much more satisfying to do both activities.

Saturday night was a blur, setting the clocks forward is always disruptive and knowing we'd wake up to rain AND darkness was less than inspiring. Add on to that, Sam's sniffles and you've got yourself a household of lackluster Mo-Mo.

But motivate we did! On the bike for a nice long warm-up, I wasn't feeling so bad. The race started and Kim from CVC-Subaru attacked on the rollout...nice. I expected some antics with the weather and depleted field, but I thought I would be the clever one. Turns out I was just tactically retarded (excuse my use of that word, but we used to be able to use that without any sort of bigoted connotation). I pulled everyone through the wind, attempted a few breaks and just had fun. One of the juniors in the field decided to go for the prime (a product giveaway) and we let her take a solo 1-lap flyer and cheered her across the line. The boys watching were dumbfounded by this.

I was hoping to get a few people organized, but no one really wanted to work. With about 7 laps to go, I thought I might launch and a few other girls had the same idea. Kim, who had gone on that solo attack right off the bat, ended up launching Pan Pan Fan off the front. Pan Pan is a friend and super-strong rider from the CRCA Metro team. I was on the opposite side of the field and didn't pick up her wheel in time. She dangled in front of me for the rest of the race. Kim had hopped on my wheel when she saw the break and said, "let's get her and work together". Turns out she meant, "You do all the work and I'll sit in". Tactical mistake number 2000 of the day. I thought she was tired and encouraged her. I told her, "short pulls" - we can reel her in and work together... figure it out in the sprint. Well, Kim decided to sit on my wheel and do zero work for those 7 laps. Well, maybe she did take two 3-second pulls on the easiest part of the course. Pan Pan expanded her lead to between 20-30 seconds and I was happy for her to have the win. At the base of the hill before the final sprint, Kim came next to me and ensured I wouldn't have a good line (or any momentum) going into the sprint. She took off and I half-halfheartedly chased her, until I decided : 1. no one was behind me and 2. I was still going home with money.

4th place last week and 3rd this week - no complaints here...but you can bet I'll be winning soon. Count on it!

A brick run after the race warmed me up...slightly. I opted out of my 2nd race with the guys and cheered Sam who took 10th. While sick, might I add?!

On to the next adventure...pictures to follow!

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Official Start of the Season

Photos courtesy of Frank Navone
A few shots of my 2nd race of the day - trying to close a gap in the men's 3/4 race.

Sunday marked the first race(s) of 2010 for me! The Bethel Spring Series, run by friend and super-fast racer, Aki, are just awesome. The races are affordable, well-run and just great training for the season ahead!

I had pipe-dreams of doing 3 races on Sunday, but after a 5-6 hour training day on Saturday, I opted to not crush myself in the first outing of high-intensity work.

Saturday night, we had a final farewell dinner with Erik and got to bed fairly early. Thank goodness our jet-lag is still hanging on (or has this early-wake-up become habit again?!), because I woke up nice and early, took the dog out and had a leisurely breakfast with my boy.

Checking in at Bethel this year was excellent, well, it's always excellent, but this year, the gracious and talented, Frank Navone, lent his new studio space for registration.

I got in a nice, long warm-up on the rollers - an act that always invites spectators - and a bathroom break before lining up for the women's race. The girls were excited to be out and we had a large field. Anne Marie Miller (multiple-time National Champion) was out with her teammates and I knew we'd be in for some pain. There were many familiar faces and a few new ones. Fellow Iron-athlete (super mom and my Kona racing buddy), Meghan, was out and looking FIT!

The race was fairly safe and despite a few attacks, stayed pretty together. After a prime, Anne Marie got off the front and none of us could organize to catch her, so she just dangled in front of the field. I had ok position going into the final sprint, but had been out in the wind too long and was just inched out and took 4th. I was the only idiot "sprinting" on my hoods, instead of in my drop bars. Oops! Alliances were made shortly-after with other teams for the upcoming weeks. My new teammate, Joanne (a super-fasty Cat 2 racer), and I agreed on some new tactics and that we'll be ready with a few attacks, counter-attacks and tricky moves of our own in the weeks to come. YES!

With 90 minutes in between my races, I opted to get warm, stay loose and take in some calories. Something I love about bike racing (especially on a nice day), is the social aspect. To chat with everyone during and post-race makes you just love the sport even more. The women this year seem especially well-behaved and welcoming - a nice change from some of the shrill whining and catty fights of year's past.

The men's 3/4 race started off quick, but was an accordion race. We'd be chasing a break and things would string out, then everyone would bunch-up REALFAST! OOf, I just tried to stay on the outside line and on "safe wheels". Most of the men were great, but a few were just plain rude - pushing me - LITERALLY - off wheels. Next week, I'm getting more aggressive and not losing my wheels to guys that then can't stay on them.

I had originally planned to go for the final sprint to try and win some cash and points, but opted to avoid potential crashes and slipped out of the field near the end. I changed my clothes, grabbed the dog and we were off for a nice transition run.

The final race of the day, the Pro 1,2,3 was LOADED with my teammates - at least 10 Cannondale riders were out, including the newest Cannondale Employee, Bobby, who absolutely DOMINATED the field of spectacularly fit riders. Making note of their speed, I was super happy I'd opted out of that 3rd race. My lack of high-intensity fitness was evident enough in the previous two.

Towards the end of the race, Lu and I were going crazy cheering. On the last lap, I was looking for Sam and a few other guys and didn't see them. Before I could even hear the word, "crash" - Lu and I were off in a full sprint to see if everyone was alright. It felt like Triage - I checked in with Sam first, who was beaten up a bit, his brand new bike was looking rough, but he was smiling like someone in shock. There were at least 8 guys that were in rough shape - road rash, cracked helmets and more. It happens, accidents are just that, accidents. I was glad to see everyone pretty much behaving themselves. Help came and race officials took numbers for insurance purposes.

Despite a minor heart attack, everything is ok - we had the crew over for Mexican food post-race and then it was early to bed. Sam has some lovely road rash and a nice 6 inch gash up the side of his right quad, but he's managing (self medicating with margaritas).

Today was (mercifully) a recovery day - yoga, swimming and horseback riding. Tomorrow it's back to the grind... a long run to start things off. Woohoo! The racing season is finally here!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Damn you New York Times

Well, I'm glad we went before the word got out... Check out the article HERE

Friday, March 5, 2010

El Fin de Semana

Remember when you were a kid and you couldn't wait for the weekend? Well, I don't think I grew out of that. True, I work for myself and get to set my own schedule, bring my dog to important meetings and do a 5 hour ride during "business hours", but I still look forward to the weekends.

Weekends mean fun, racing, sleep, wine, and so much more! This weekend will be filled with all of the aforementioned! Tonight is the Stage-1 FusionTHINK GNO (girl's night only/out). Talk tactics, drink wine and celebrate in classic cackling style.

Tomorrow is an early wake-up call for a run with the dog, then I'll be off for a nice long base ride with Chris (pro-roadie extraordinaire) and the Stage-1 girls. After that, Sam and I will hit the pool before a pre-race dinner out w/ my 'rents.

Sunday... drumroll please... is the first race of 2010. And not just one race, but three! I'll be doing a nice long warm-up, then racing the women's race at 10:30. At 1 PM, I'll be racing the men's 3/4 race, after that, the men's Pro 1, 2, 3 race and then a nice transition run with the dog.

Sunday night is bound to be filled with a community dinner at Tarrywile where we'll all recount the pain and pleasure of the first race(s) of the season.

No rest for the wicked (er, not so wicked?!) as Monday brings with it a recovery swim and a long run.

With a weekend like that, it's easy to be excited. This blog is a nice place where I can remind myself to appreciate just how good I've got it!

Disfruten su fin de semana! Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Dreams of Italy

(Above picture of the four of us - Erin was the only one appropriately dressed... I was cursing that long sleeve I put on that day! We would leave in the early AM and ride right into the heat of the day. In running they say, "dress for your race" - I didn't exactly follow it that day and ended up soaked...as did the boys!)

I've been having wild dreams for a few weeks now - some are exhausting, others just plain exciting. Since returning from Italia, my dreams have centered around the experiences I had there. No doubt, it has me nostalgic for waking up to a relaxed Sam, and tea/coffee and early bike rides with Erik and Erin

Since returning home, I've had awesome workouts. It only reiterates that the training I did in Italy was at the appropriate level. Running yesterday, I found that while I ran at the same heart rate as before (my base, aerobic zone), I ran 1 minute per mile faster. It's pretty cool when that happens! Swimming, which I thought would be horribly painful after 10 days off, was oddly effortless. I held my fitness and got in a strong 3200 muscle strength swim w/ short rest in about 40 minutes. I was only a second or two off my training pace and it was encouraging!

I still haven't adjusted to the time being home...I find going to Europe easier (yes, I know it should be easier coming home). I'm still 6 hours ahead and really liking my early wake-ups. Of course, my sleepiness did catch up with me today as I fell asleep for 2 hours this afternoon.

Italy was a blur of total splendor. I'm writhing about in the sheets in the bed of my memory. Thinking of the great conversation, incredible riding and running, the wine, the food; it all was so much to take in, so much to digest. This trip was so good for me mentally and physically.

There was not a single argument (a true feat when traveling with anyone, let alone another couple and your significant other), not a single upset at anyone on the trip. I tend to be a peacemaker, and a worrier (thanks, Mom). So I think about how everyone else is doing, how they are feeling at any particular moment. Sam eventually told me to stop worrying, everyone was having a great time. I can't help it - I read a lot of David Sedaris, and while he is hilarious, some of his travel stories (of other people) are downright horrifying.

That said, getting to spend time with friends from far away (Erik and Erin live in Switzerland) was priceless. It was important to say the things I've been meaning to express, in person. Erin is a real source of inspiration to anyone she meets, without even trying. She is a naturally good and kind person. Erin and I bonded quickly a few years ago when we learned we're twins in a way. We both went to school to pursue the same paths, graduated with the same obscure double majors and then proceeded to take entirely different life directions. Erin and Erik travel a lot. They are frugal, smart and savvy. Having another person fluent in Spanish was fun and helpful in Italy... while my Italian is remedial, at best, my Spanish (and Erin's), made communicating far easier since Italians tend to understand Spanish and vice-versa.

I could go on and on (and I will in the posts to come), but suffice to say, I am as in awe of my friend as ever. Especially in her new athletic prowess. Riding alongside Erin for 10 days was a true highlight and our conversations, ranging from silly to serious, made the hours fly by.

In the days to come, I promise to post about each day - the places we visited, hopefully some maps, details on feet of climbing, etc. if I can figure out how to unload my Garmin.
Sam, Euro-Driver Extraordinaire. This is us in our Fiat Punto...the sweetest, tiniest car you've ever seen.
Early morning start from our villa. Riding along the Pave (hard-packed dirt roads built over original Roman and cobble roads).
Action shot! Eric and I take a taste of some incredible Brunellos, Barberas and Barbarescos at the famous Enoteca Italiana (wine library) in Siena, Italy - a collection of almost every wine in Italy...that you can taste! Located under, yes, UNDER, the Fortress Medicea.
Vibrant greens, vineyards, olive groves, sky, mountains and mountains and mountains!
Same day, overdressed, but happy as can be. That's my Italian supermodel face...although I don't think they ride bikes...

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

I'm Back, Bitches! (an homage to my friend Dawn)

Yup! Back on Terra Firma and 6 hours ahead, still. I landed, gave some presents to my lovely 'rents that watched Luna and the pony, ate some General Tso's Tofu (my travel tradition) and crashed out hard.

Up at 6 AM to get back to life, back to reality. A big training week in the Tuscan sun is now over, along with many adventures I plan to share here (and I few I'll just keep to myself!).

I'll get some photos loaded up and then you'll be looking at 10 days of Italian adventuring and some training in there!

Sunday marks the start of the Bike Racing season and I can't wait... the women's race, the men's 3/4 race and the Pro 1,2,3 race, if I'm feeling snappy. That's a total of right around 75-80 miles of RACING every sunday, plus a 1 hour warm-up and running afterwards... oh, and this Sunday? As a bonus, I get to go ice skating with the girls after all of that. CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!!