Wood or silverware, which would you choose?

Saturday will be our fifth wedding anniversary.

I still fall a little bit more in love with him each day.

I hope that I bring as much fun, happiness and curiosity to his life as he does to mine!

I'm not perfect and neither is he, but we bring out the best in each other and accept each other no matter what, even when we're both feeling a little tired and stressed out with daily life.

I would never have moved to Austin, done a triathlon, or run a marathon, if I didn't have his encouragement or support, and let's not forget the fact that he got me into all of this in the first place!

When I look back at all the things we've done, the places we've been, and the successes we've achieved, it blows me away. It makes me realise how much he has enriched my life and I thank him for that.

5 years down, and many, many more to go!!!

I love you, Gordon.

Ironman Arizona training - week 4

4 weeks down. 20 weeks to go.

This week was always going to be tough to meet the planned hours, especially considering that not only was it the week of Thanksgiving and a 5 day trip to Florida for us, but also because our coaches decided to raise the number of workout hours to 11, oh and not to mention the killer hill repeat workout to start the week off! Crikey.

Anyway, I gave it my best shot. I managed to swim once. I biked twice, once on the trainer and once on the Veloway. I ran 3 times, one brutal hill workout on Wilke plus tempo afterwards, one leisurely run along South Beach in Florida, and one 5K PR! So my hours weren't terribly high and I missed a long bike and long run, but I knew that would happen and I'm just really pleased that I stayed focused and ran while I was away in Florida. The surprising thing was how much I actually wanted to run while I was away. The alcohol certainly didn't help the running, but it didn't dampen my enthusiasm! I guess I musn't have drunk enough, tee hee.

Goal hours: 11
Actual hours: 5.83

So I at least made 50% of the workouts!

Bike: 1.75hrs / 32 miles
Run: 2.58hrs / 16.75 miles
Swim: 1.25hrs / 3300 yards
Core: 0.25hrs

This week the bar has been raised again, to 13.5 hours. That's a lot of swimming, cycling and running!


An unexpected PR

Gordon and I were wandering around Key West with some friends on Friday night, feeling a little tired and slightly hungover from the few drinks we'd had in South Beach Miami the night before, when Gordon spotted a registration table for the annual "Hogs Breath 5K" race to be run the following morning at 8am. Gordon was keen to do the race. I was feeling tired and making excuses. It's not that I didn't want to run the next morning, and in fact we had already run along South Beach earlier that day, but I just wasn't feeling up for trying to run fast. It's been a while since I've run a 5K without swimming and cycling beforehand, and in the back of my mind I knew that I'd be disappointed if I didn't beat my 5K PR that was set at the Schlotzky's Bun Run in 2004 (24:07)!

Anyway, I stopped making excuses and we signed up. Then we had a couple of glasses of wine, had a cheese platter, gourmet pizza and key lime pie, then had an early night while our friends headed out for a few more drinks. I wasn't taking the race too seriously but I also didn't want to feel like total rubbish the next morning!

Before the start of the race, Gordon and I decided that our tactic would be to just run it easy to the turnaround point, then pick it up on the way back. But everything changed when the horn sounded and suddenly we were actually taking it seriously! We ran together for most of the way, right up to about 1.25 miles to go. Then Gordon picked it up and I never caught him. He was only ever about 10s in front of me but I just didn't catch him. He was too fast. He ended up crossing the finish line in 23:29 and I crossed in 23:39. Personal best 5K times for the both of us!!!

Our friends were at the finish line to cheer us on, which was unexpected and very cool. The added benefit for Gordon, was that they got to see him beat me. He got at least a few hours of mileage out of that.

Thanks for talking me into signing up for the 5K, Gordon, it was fun!


Bikes on the roof!!!

I have a roof rack on my car for our bikes. Gordon and I spent several hours last summer installing it. At the old apartment we only had a single car garage, and Gordon got dibs on the indoor parking (he has a nicer car than mine). In March when we moved into the house we suddenly found ourselves with a double car garage, so I finally got to park inside. You probably see where this story is going...

Since we moved into the house, every time we load our bikes onto the roof and go out for a ride, whenever we return home we will call out "bikes on the roof", "bikes on the roof" to remind ourselves to not drive directly into the garage without first unloading the bikes.

All was well and good, i.e. we remembered without fail, until well, tonight. Tonight we failed. Upon our return from a good 1.25hr jaunt on the Veloway, I promptly drove our bikes directly into the garage. Crash, crunch, what the f*!k, oh shit, bikes on the roof!!!

The roof rack managed to slide half off. Fortunately it only took off the right bar end shifter on both of our bikes (still, it will cost about $100 each to fix our bikes!). The roof of my car is a little dented and scratched. F*!k.

My car looks weird without a roof rack.

Oh, the best part? Gordon's fancy new, expensive, tri bike was on the roof. I managed to crash his bike before he did.

Oh, and the funny part? On the way home from the Veloway I was commenting that my car doesn't have a cracked windscreen (like Gordon's) and no dent in the bonnet (like Gordon's, after his extremely lucky encounter with a deer on Sunday night - by lucky I mean it could have been a lot worse). I tell you, karma is a bitch.

So everything happens in 3's:
- Gordon fell while running a few weeks ago, he hit a deer on Sunday, now his bike needs fixing.
- I've ripped up two rear tyres on my bike the past couple of rides, and then I crashed my car into the garage. Hmmm, I think Gordon's "3" is a whole lot worse than mine. I should stop complaining!

What a way to start our Thanksgiving holiday!


Ironman Arizona training - week 3

3 weeks down. 21 weeks to go.

Another good week to round out Phase 1 of the training. I managed to get to swim practice twice this week and even did a T2 swim (the longer distance swim)! Made all the bike hours this week and did some extra run mileage. Gordon and I switched the long bike and long run this past weekend due to a dinner party on Saturday night. It's slightly easier to ride after a few drinks than run... well actually no it's not. Friends of ours cooked a great dinner on Saturday night, but a few glasses of champagne, a glass of wine, and a late night gave me a bit of a headache and tired legs for the bike ride on Sunday morning. Lucky we only needed to ride 40. But at the 25 mile mark I got a flat tire, caused by a piece of wire on the side of the road which caused a lovely gash in my rear tire. Which meant that I needed to finish the ride and just get home so that I wouldn't get a blowout (lucky we were only 20 minutes from home). Gordon also had to go out for the rest of the day, but because we are so dedicated to the training program (seriously) we made up the extra mileage on the trainer that evening. Go us!

Goal hours: 9
Actual hours: 9.58

Bike: 3.6hrs / 55 miles
Run: 3.25hrs / 21 miles
Swim: 2.5hrs / 6000 yards
Core: 0.25hrs

Felt a little tired Monday morning, but still doing okay...

This week is going to be a bit challenging with Thanksgiving and our trip to Florida. But the plan is to get as much bike riding as possible done early in the week, then run while we're in Florida.

Google "hypocrite"


someone who complains about something but finds themselves doing exactly the same thing

A: "i hate people that complain about other people, they're SO annoying!"
B: "shut up, hypocrite!"

Yeah, that would be me. After giving my Australian family and friends such a hard time for not reading my blog, what do I go and do? Be lazy and not blog for a week. Page hits are down across the board... now no-one is reading my blog!

I must blog. I must blog. I must blog.

But I refuse to blog about random, silly things, just to fill up blog space. Heh.


Oh where, oh where have my Aussie friends gone?

I set myself up with Google Analytics to see what kind of hits I'm getting on my blog, and where they're coming from. Someone in Vienna is reading my site, very cool! Whoever it is, leave me a comment so I know who you are!

One of the main reasons I started this blog, apart from being able to randomly rabbit on about various things going on in my life, was to keep my family and friends in Australia up to date with what I'm doing. But do you think I have any hits from Australia? No, nada.

I'm posting pretty regularly, sometimes I have interesting things to write about, I'll start adding photos soon...

So where the bloody hell are ya?

Ironman Arizona training - week 2

(I'm a few days late on this post, but better late than never!)

2 weeks down. 22 weeks to go.

It was another good week, except for a bit of a tummy bug late Wednesday night / Thursday morning, which meant that I skipped swim practice Thursday morning. Despite that, I still made all of my hours and focused a bit more on running and cycling this week.

Goal hours: 9
Actual hours: 9.47

Bike: 4.8hrs / 85 miles
Run: 2.9hrs / 19 miles
Swim: 1.25hrs / 2550 yards
Core: 0.5hrs

I still feel great!


Turning wurst into pretty darn good

Saturday we did the annual Wurst Ride from Austin to New Braunfels. The ride promises a mostly flat 100km course, great rest stops, beer and sausage at the finish line, and tickets to the annual German festival "Wurstfest". Despite all this, the ride has some unpleasant memories for me. Last year it was warm, in-your-face windy, I fell at mile 50 and Gordon was off taking photos in Big Bend so I had no-one to take care of me! I was sore for at least a week.

The goal for this year's ride: Replace unpleasant memories with good ones... check!

Saturday morning. It was chilly, there was a tail wind for the most part, I got to ride with Gordon, met a fellow T3'er called Valerie and rode with her as well, and I DIDN'T FALL! In fact, the course changed this year and we never rode past the spot I fell at last year. We had a great ride, held a good solid pace, we ate sausage, we drank a beer, we sat in the shade by the river, then we caught the bus home. It was fun.


My absolute favourite restaurant in Austin, tie me kangaroo hands down, would have to be Uchi, an uber-delicious sushi restaurant in Austin. I just asked Gordon to go and look at his Visa card statement to see how many times we've been there! Seriously it has been a lot. Somewhere in the vicinity of 20-30 times, ahem, in the past year. My favourite clothing store in Austin (By George) were the ones that got me hooked. At the end of summer last year they were doing a promotion where whenever you spent $250 or more you would get a $25 Uchi voucher. So needless to say we ended up with a handful of vouchers. But that's not the reason we kept going back. The food is fabulous and I love that you can order as much or as little as you want. The location is great, the funky old house that is the restaurant is charming and quaint. The barman knows us, the valet guy knows us, the waitstaff knows us. It's kind of nice to have a "local" restaurant, just like you'd have a "local" pub. It feels nice.


Ironman Arizona training - week 1

1 week down. 23 weeks to go.

It was a good week. I hit all of my hours.

Goal hours: 9
Actual hours: 9.25

Bike: 3.6hrs / 67.5 miles
Run: 2.6hrs / 16 miles
Swim: 2.5hrs / 5400 yards
Core: 0.25hrs

I feel great!


Last night we saw the show "Requiem" presented by Blue Lapis Light at the shell of the former Intel building (before it gets demolished!). It was fantastic. There was opera, there was dancing, there was abseiling, there was floating and spinning. All set to the backdrop of the Austin skyline, a foggy humid evening, and a full moon. Sensational.


Let me preface this post with a big thank you to Mike for:
(1) letting us buy his spare tickets at a good price,
(2) inviting us to his tailgating party,
(3) his helpful explanation of American football rules during the game,
(4) being such a super nice, understanding, friend.

(I don't think I'll ever be invited again once he reads this post!)

The game itself is boring and slow. It took 3.5 hours to get through 60 minutes of actual play time!!! I prefer a more continuous game of sport such as Australian Rules football or Soccer. Cricket, which to many people is slow and boring (it can take 5 days to play an entire game), runs at light speed compared to American football! It's the stop, start, stop, start of American football that is the most frustrating part. I enjoyed parts of the game when someone started running with the ball and got a touchdown. That was fun. I also enjoyed the atmosphere of the crowd and the on-field entertainment provided by the band, cheerleaders, gymnastics team, mascots, cheerleaders, etc. But no matter how much you dress up and accessorize it, mutton will always be mutton.

The part I enjoyed the most? The tailgating before the game.


standing ovations

Back on the topic of standing ovations... the show I saw last night really did deserve one!

Last night was Halloween and Gordon and I went with some friends to see "The Rocky Horror Show" at the Zachary Scott Theatre. It was a live production, not the movie. It was quite an experience!

I've seen parts of the movie before, a long time ago and at home. I thought it was an odd movie but I think I fell asleep halfway through (or my parents stopped me watching it, I can't remember?!) and so I never really gave it much thought. I had no idea that there was this whole other world of Rocky Horror fans, and that when you see the movie or watch the stage show, people actually join in by shouting out lines and throwing items onto the stage! It was crazy fun and I had such a good time and laughed for nearly the whole show. Everyone stood up and danced to the "Time Warp"! People shouted things out, threw toast, confetti, squirted water pistols... it was also a special Halloween showing so about half the crowd were dressed up in Halloween costumes. It was great fun and I think I have my costume sorted for Halloween next year...

The show is on until November 12th. Go and see it!