Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Pull-up video

Here's a video I made of the 200-pull-up challenge. I'm not sure if it would be funny to someone who wasn't there; you tell me! (I die laughing every time I see it.)

Monday, July 26, 2010

Ironman weekend 2010

This past weekend I continued my trend of one-monthly visits to Lake Placid. I was going up to watch my cousin in the Ironman, and I decided to make a huge weekend out of the whole thing.

Drew (whom I like to brag that I've known since we were 7!) is working on trail crew in Keene Valley this summer, so naturally we had to climb together. We hit up Cascade Pond Pass,

and, when it started pouring rain, King Wall, which is slightly overhanging and sheltered from the rain (for the climber, not the belayer).

(King Wall)

On Saturday morning we woke up to this:

And that's how I knew it was going to be an epic day. That, and the fact that I'd already planned the 200 pull-up challenge with Jon, set to begin mid-morning. The players in this contest included:


Drew, Jon,

Dylan, and my cousin Justin.

(The other Justin and Chelsea were doing a run instead.)

First we did 150 pull-ups. Then we couldn't do any more, so we decided to take a break and go kayaking!

Chelsea after a valiant first effort

Holding Drew up

We also fed ducks, which I realize is a poor practice, but I couldn't resist-- the little buggers were eating out of my hands!

After kayaking, my cousin Chris and his buddies came over and cooked us dinner.

(me, Chris, and my sister Anna)

They were doing the Ironman the following day and we had a delicious pasta feast, as well as a surprise birthday cake for Anna (it was her 20th birthday).

After dinner we remembered the 50 pull-ups we had left... and that's when things started to get really painful.

(Drew cheering me on for my last few)

However, I am proud to say I did complete 200!

The next day was the Ironman, and the real reason for my trip.

My cousin Justin was labeled "That Beer Guy" by many of the competitors, as he was on the roads in various spots from 8am- midnight with this sign and SEVERAL cases of PBR.

Some people cheered, and some cursed us out, but for the most part we put smiles on many faces.

And my cousin Chris finished his first Ironman; Go Chris!

All in all, it was another fantastic weekend in the North Country.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Whirlwind trip to Cali

Things have been happening quickly now.

I'm just trying to hang on... although to be honest sometimes the prospect of living in a van and adventuring out west looks too good to pass up. [This is a plan I've had since I was 13]

But for now, the adventure-lifestyle will have to come in bits and pieces as I charge forward towards the 2012 Olympics. I've been in San Diego the past few days getting some work done and arranging my fall classes at college. I find that due to the absence of formal education in my life during the time that my friends have been attending school, I am anxiously awaiting my personal college education with enthusiasm. I want to do it RIGHT NOW!!!

But I can't do everything at once. [yet]

For now my life's recipe is 3/5c kayaking, 1/5c college and 1/5c adventuring.

And I can look forward to the fact that my recipe will always be changing.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Count your blessings

I have made the decision to stay home and train in Rochester, NY until US Nationals in one month.

It's no secret that my health has put a huge wrench in my plans this year.

But to be honest, this Plan B is not too heart-wrenching because I love home. I'm less than 4 hours from Canada, 5 hours from Lake Placid and the Adirondak Mountains (!!), and 3 hours from awesome outdoor rock climbing. I also have over 5 totally paddle-able bodies of water (lake, pond, creek, river, canal, etc..) in my town so I never get bored paddling in the same place. I have fast training partners including Jim and Nicole Mallory and Jason Quagliata (my coach from age 14-18). I have gorgeous trails to hike and run, a sick bouldering gym where I climb, a beach on which to run, and friends with whom to cross-train (canoe, rollerski, mountain bike, swim). There are running or canoeing races every weekend for me to jump in and compete. And of course, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the best part: my awesome family who creates an impressive support foundation that allows me to live at home with them while I'm training.

Nothing's perfect.... but I'd say I've got it pretty good. :)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Reference list for how difficult your life is

Death of a family member
When your house gets burned down or swept away by a tsunami
When you are a starving child wondering when you will next eat
When you're a military spouse afraid for the safety of your loved ones
Being a prisoner/kidnapped/held hostage
Being mauled by a bear
When you are diagnosed with cancer
Getting into a fatal car accident
Being lost alone in the wilderness for two weeks

Almost everything else.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Recycle your #5 plastics!

I love recycling. It's an easy way to reduce your environmental footprint, and therefore I feel it's inexcusable not to be a participant. So it's no surprise that I am miffed by Rochester's (as well as most cities') lack of polypropylene processing facilities. Polypropylene is any container labeled #5: yogurt, cottage cheese, margarine, hummus, drinking straws, bottle caps, etc. My family of five eats at least four quarts of yogurt per week, and it kills me to throw away all those containers. Today I did some research, and found a solution!

I will now be mailing my #5 plastics to:

Preserve Gimme 5
823 NYS Rte 13
Cortland, NY 13045

This is a program called Preserve Gimme 5, which recycles #5 plastics. Their research has shown that "the benefits of keeping #5 plastics out of landfills and remaking them into new products outweigh the environmental impacts of shipping them back to us." To reduce the environmental impact of the process, they ask that you mail them in large quantaties in a recycled box by ground shipping.

(You can also drop #5s off at Whole Foods and other locations, but we don't have Whole Foods around here.)

I would urge everyone to take part in this cool program. As a human being- especially one in a developed country with recycling facilities- there is no excuse for negligence in regards to such an important and undemanding initiative.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

The Trial of Miles

From Once a Runner, by John L. Parker:

"And too there were the questions: What did he eat? Did he believe in isometrics? Isotonics? Ice and heat? How about aerobics, est, ESP, STP? What did he have to say about yoga, yogurt, Yogi Berra? What was his pulse rate, his blood pressure, his time for the hundred-yard dash? What was the secret, they wanted to know; in a thousand different ways they wanted to know The Secret. And not one of them was prepared, truly prepared, to believe that it had not so much to do with chemicals and zippy mental tricks as with that most unprofound and sometimes heartrending process of removing, molecule by molecule, the very tough rubber that comprised the bottoms of his training shoes. The Trial of Miles; Miles of Trials. How could they be expected to understand that?"