Monday, December 31, 2012

Here's Lookin' at You, 2012: a year in review

Hi again!  I saw so many year in review posts these past few days that I decided to take a look back at my own 2012 and see what I've done.  So, here it is!

And also, it was a good chance to let you all see my new header and tell me what you think!

2012, the year of the comeback!

In January,  I was still on the injury list, working on all my physiotherapy goals.  I was wearing my fancy calf-stretching boots to bed nearly every night.

In February I had worked my way back up to some short runs and ran a 5k!

It was a chilly day.

After that I started training for a half marathon and decided it was high time to start some proper speed work.  I began with fartleks.

They were tough.

I then added tempo runs.

They were, well, a challenge.

While I continued to build my running skills through the spring, I sprinkled in some different exercise.  Like yoga.

I never did get the hang of it.

In June I ran my A race with Ann Marie, the Seattle Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon!

That was the same weekend I got to meet so many bloggers from near and far!

Some of the best peeps!

Once I'd tucked away my big comeback race, it was time to start thinking about my July triathlon!  With very little preparation, I enjoyed an incredibly fun weekend of watching TriGuy race his first Half Ironman, watching Ann Marie run another half marathon, and slogging my way through my sprint tri.

In case you didn't know, I really love high fives.

I ran another half marathon in September, putting on record my smashing personal worst as I was struck with illness right before the race started.

That was not the most fun race I've ever had, but I hope to run it again next year in better health.

In the late fall I went back to physiotherapy for some nagging pain in my left shoulder that had been getting worse.  I learned that there were some muscles I didn't use at all, and that others were tighter than my favourite pair of jeans from 1990 (just the part below the know what I'm talking about.)

The good news is that I'm better now and maybe I'll actually learn to balance on my bike and swim in a straight line!

Finally, I celebrated 2 years of blogging in December!

Is it odd to link to a retrospective post in a retrospective post? It's like Inception.

My plan for 2013 is to focus on running, but I won't rule out a sprint tri and perhaps some new workouts;  for example, my friend Jenna wants to take me to a TRX class! Lord help me.

*Don't forget, you can still enter for a chance to win the book 7 Years Younger!


1.  Did you notice the new header I made? (Thank you to everyone who weighed in on making a new one.)

2.  How was your year?  Do you have big plans for 2013?

3.  Thoughts on the "Pin It"s next to the pictures?  Helpful or too much clutter?

I'm linking up with "Yeah Write".  There are so many great writers there!  Just click on the button below to check them out.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

It's a New Year for a New You! 7 Years Younger Book Review and Giveaway

UPDATE:  WE HAVE A WINNER! I used to select the winner (but while trying to cut and paste it here, it reloaded the site.  I'm cool like that.)  The winner is Megan from WatchMegoRun!

It definitely sounds like an interesting read! I would like to change things up in terms of what I cook/eat. PS - one day, just for fun, can you please do your make up like the above picture? :)

Congrats Megan!  Email me your address so I can mail you the book!  (Not sure if I can do the makeup request though...maybe one day :P )

Thanks to everyone who entered!

 A while back, I was contacted by the editors of Good Housekeeping to review their new book 7 Years Younger.

Their media packet states that "This is an easy-to-follow guide that delivers proven results, based on established science as well as testing in the Good Housekeeping Research Institute, to help women look and feel their absolute best."-Rosemary Ellis, Editor-in-chief, Good Housekeeping. I thought it would be fun to get some tips on how to look and feel my best, so I requested a copy.  I'm not sure what I was expecting, but the book was not quite what I was expecting.  It was a little bigger.

Perhaps it was so heavy because there were two...I got one for one of you!

The book is laid out in such a way that they introduce the concepts of the chapter, then give you a quick start.  This is followed by a 7 week plan and testimonial by one of their panelists.  I like the fact that they back up their information with research.

They have lists of the best makeup and skincare products based on price and test subjects' responses.   This is very helpful if you are anything like me and get completely confused about what to put on your face.

If you are ready to spend some time focusing on your health, this is a very good book.  It gives you the reasons behind the foods you should eat, what vitamins you need, and the best sources for them.  It also has a great plan for starting to exercise if you currently do very little to none, has healthy recipes, and ideas for choosing better meals when eating out.

If you would like to win a copy of this book, leave a comment below telling me how you would like to change things up this year!

*Contest open to US residents only (very sorry my international friends...I still love you!)

The contest will be open until Sunday, January 6th at noon PST.  I will choose a winner using   WE HAVE A WINNER! Please make sure I have a way to contact you! (e.g. email or Twitter)

Want extra entries?  Leave a separate comment for each of the following:

1.  Follow me on Google Friend Connect, or let me know if you already do.

2.  Twitter @triingathlete, or let me know if you already do.

3.  Tweet about the giveaway, and come back leaving a comment that you did so.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Running Against the Wind (or Why I Force My Klutzy Self onto the Treadmill)

Over the past month or so I've been easing my way back into running.  You see, after my last half marathon I kind of didn't want to run so much.

But with Ann Marie on the mend from her stress fracture, and thinking ahead to race goals for next year, it was time to start getting serious about running again.

I started with mostly weekend runs, building up to 3 or 4 miles.  When Ann Marie said she was cleared for a 3.5 mile walk/run, I was ready to rock!  We planned to go to the trail around the lake by her house.  It was a chilly day, so we dressed warmly.

The activity itself went very well, as we were able to run most of the way (yay Ann Marie!)  The trouble was the wind.  It was fierce.  And completely unpredictable.  One moment we would be moving along, chatting about her adorable baby niece and nephew, and the next I would be apologizing.

I went running again the next day, and the wind was still an issue.

There were tailwinds.

There were crosswinds.

And there were headwinds.

Because of this, and the fact that it gets dark here around 4pm (seriously, when did I move to Alaska??) I have to commit to running on the treadmill if I want to run during the week.  And if you think that running indoors on a machine is safer, well, you've never seen me run on a treadmill.

For instance, I get very hot in about 62 seconds.

I should put up a splatter screen at the back of my treadmill.

And, I'm easily distracted.

This little incident left me with a bruise the size of a silver dollar on my forearm.

And then, there's this little situation that happened last week:

I went to the gym to do some speed work.  I did a little over 4 miles and kept about 1.5 miles near an 8:30 min/per mile pace.  It was ultra-fast for me and by the end I was drenched in sweat liquid awesome!  So since I'm a considerate person, I went and got the spray bottle and a paper towel to wipe down my machine.

It was super clean.

I saw a girl looking at me strangely but I couldn't figure out why...until I was walking out the door and I realized that I had cleaned the treadmill NEXT to mine.

I haven't been back to the gym all week.

Please tell me you've done something as ridiculous as this in your life!  And if you have, share it in the comments below!

UPCOMING POSTS:   I'm actually not sure yet, but I will be doing more running and swimming soon so that's probably what the subject matter will be.

Finally, thank you to all who commented on the blog birthday post!  I have listened and agree that it is time for a new banner, so stay tuned for that in the coming weeks!!

Linking up once more with the talented folk at Yeah Write. Click on the button below for some great reads!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Happy Birthday!!

It's my blog's birthday today! Yup, TriGirl is officially 2 years old!!

And so I thought I would celebrate by looking back at the important milestones.  To start with, here is the very first picture I ever drew for the blog.

In the second post, I introduced TriGuy (referred to only as "the husband" at the time).  Poor guy didn't get much hair or any attached limbs.  Not to mention, he didn't get a stitch of clothing.

Oh wait, there was a scarf and ski boots.

I seemed to frequently forget clothing in the early posts.

Guess my shirt fell off when I crashed.

And sometimes, my friends were missing clothes too.

She must've been going so fast her shirt blew right off.

At times, I had no pants.

I had more important things on my mind, (like figuring out how to pedal with no gears, chains, brakes and no revolving pedals).  Yes, this is in my header picture.  

Of course as time wore on and I got more practice, I tweaked the drawings.  I did eventually decide to learn how to draw a real bike.

As I began to become a more active blogger, I got to take my first big steps.  

I had a post featured on BlogHer.

I've done the blog awards, hopped blog hops (Hey, toddlers need play dates!), done guest posts, and met lots of new friends!!   

Through blogging I've even learned more about swimming, biking, and running.  Imagine that!

And, I started a Zazzle shop, where you can buy shirts (YOU CAN CHOOSE THE STYLE, COLOUR AND SIZE), mugs, stickers, aprons, coasters, bumper stickers, binders, phone cases...and calendars.

Last year The Force was not very strong within me and I only sold one calendar.  Maybe it's more powerful this year?  You can click through the sidebar on the right, or just click here!

And now, I have a question for you all.  I've been thinking about my header, and whether I should upgrade to a newer drawing; one that's more representative of my current style.   I am partial to the one I have, but it is a little basic.

So do I go with 

Option A:  Retro/classic (albeit pantslesss) TriGirl


Option B:  Fancy-pantsied/updated TriGirl

I will tally up the votes, weigh the pros and cons carefully, and then potentially just make up my own mind :)

As I've said before, I'm so grateful for all your comments and support.  Blogging has been so much more than I thought it would be and I am looking forward to all the wonderful things the future will bring!



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