Wanderlust and Waning Focus

This post goes all over, you have been warned. :)

I have had so many different travel-related webpages open on my browser in the last few weeks.  These include…

  • An all inclusive dive resort in Roatan, Honduras
  • A groupon for New Zealand + Fiji
  • A Bahamas diving video
  • Stuff on tours in Peru, Bangkok, Costa Rica, probably other places I’m not thinking of.
  • Trips to Europe – London/Paris, Italy/Greece, etc
  • Stuff for our Portland/Rockaway Beach/Santa Barbara trip in a few months
  • Potential cruises out of Florida in December after the marathon
  • Potential trip to South Padre island instead of one of those exotic places in October.

I’ve got some serrrrrious wanderlust right now for some of this.

PICT0705

The problem is I’ve been to some stellar places already and want to go back, too.  It is seriously not fair that there are so many cool places around the world to check out and so little vacation time, and some of them take sooooo long to get to (Australia, I’m looking at you :P ).

I love my job, I love my house, I love my life, but I think if I had the opportunity to pick up and go travel for a year and could do something productive with my time (write a travel blog/book? take pictures and sell them? host a tv show at remote locations? find something that I could work at remotely?), and could survive monetarily, Zliten and I would just go do it.

I’m sure it is partially that tri season is winding down for the year and it’s close to offseason.  I didn’t feel the need for it until about a week ago, when I realized that I’m pretty tired mentally and my body is taking longer to come back from this race than the others this year.  I definitely have one more quick sharpening of the knife in me to try and bust out some PRs at the Sprint and Olympic distance next month, but I’m really glad I’m taking a month off after to refresh the energy and motivation stores.

may7-1

I’ve been able to prolong this season quite a bit because I have been smart about taking time off after each major race, but it’s finally catching up with me in some not so good ways.

I’ve lost motivation in the dietary department, I have definitely given into the junk food lately, and while it’s not majorly manifesting on the scale just yet, it will if I don’t quit this shit.  I’m not tracking calories and I’m not tracking diet quality, and that means I ate things like pizza and breadsticks and cake and not-whole-wheat tortillas and chips and dip this weekend, not to mention a double digit amount of drinks over Saturday and Sunday.  I am finding it easier to eat crap because I’m not accountable.

I’ve found this week that I’m finally, actually curious about my calorie intake again instead of not giving a fuck, so I think after memorial day I’ll be back on the straight and narrow.  I was giving myself through the end of tri season, but I think I’m going to be ready sooner.  I definitely didn’t want this junkfoodarama to overlap with the off season where I’m not doing much, lest I see the scale jump.

However, waning motivation does not mean a lack of training.  I’m still pretty motivated there after a week of slackitude after the race.  Since we have some time in between the last race and the next one, we wanted to try two “feats of strength” in terms of distance.

1. Swim 5k in open water.

I’ve swam just over the iron distance before (2.45 miles) last year but we wanted to do a full 5k/5k (swim then run).  I kept about a 40 min/mile pace pretty solid and felt fine, but I saw Zliten head in before the last short lap I needed to do so I called it at 2.75 in about 1h 54 min.  Personal distance record!  We were short on time so we did not run.  I wasn’t too pooped right after, but I felt a deep tired for the rest of the weekend from it (this was 6 days after racing the x-50, so that was probably part of it).

may21-2

2. Bike 100 miles outside.  I’ve done 110+ miles on the trainer twice, but have yet to ride more than 64 miles outside.  We got going, and my legs were just shredded from the get go from the first week back at full volume.  We stopped at 55 miles to take a rest and I ate so much food (a whole orange, half of a sandwich, and so many cheetos – and I had been fueling on the bike with blocks) and got back on the bike – it was hot, we were miserable, and we agreed that a personal distance record was enough, we didn’t have to hit the 100, so we called it at 70.  I was not prepared to hurt that badly to get to triple digits.

So, while we’ve gone further than we have before (yay!), we fell short of both goals (boo!).  It was for the best.  I’ll have to keep chipping away at riding my bike a long time and maybe rest a little more before the next attempt – I’d done about 7 hours last week already and was sort of sore and tired already going in, so that didn’t help.

I’m not dumb enough to try to go run super long like 20 miles (talk about some serious recovery time, especially since my comfort zone is only around 10-13 miles), though we do have plans to “run long” with a friend who was flirting with the 20 mile distance, I’m also prepared to cut it any time after 10 that I feel like I would be overdoing it to go further. I hope.

I’m spending this one last week of volume  (20 miles running, about 5k swim, ~125 bike miles, and 2 weights sessions), and then next week decrease the volume a bit and up some intensity to prepare for shorter, faster efforts.

The rest of the weekend (besides the epic bike ride) was for relaxing.  Zliten and I spent the day ordering a pizza, watching triathlon videos, hanging on the patio when it cooled off, drinking beers and blendy drinks, watching Rocky Horror around midnight (it had been a while) and then (a little drunkenly) singing unofficial karaoke.

Sunday, we did slept in and did chores and then went to our next door neighbor’s house for a crab boil.

may21-1

It was as spectacular as it looks, and it was a great way to wind down the weekend.

In other news – I got to give a talk with some other folks here at work to a group of girls who attend a technology focused school.  It was really bizarre to squish my 13 years of industry experience into a little 5 minute introduction (and, um, most of the other folks took the not telling their life story route, so mine was WAY the longest, what can I say, I like to talk).  It was also really cool being able to impart some of the knowledge I wished I had, like:

1. Go ask for what you want.  Be bold.  If people brush you off, go ask more people.  Be polite, be patient, but keep telling people what you want to do and asking for help getting there.

2. Negotiate your salary.  Don’t take the first offer if it’s lower than you want.  Men tend to negotiate.  Women tend to settle.  There is usually a range of salaries for positions, so it’s rare that it’s their final offer.

And also sharing how it used to be a big bummer for girls in the industry, like when i first got my first job, I got gawked at a lot.  It was really cool to be a part of, and they seemed pretty interested, and not just because we gave them cookies, so it was a great Friday morning.

So, what’s up in the future tense?

The one last feat of strength (speed?) we have left is to go run a standalone 5k sometime between now and before the Lake PF tri.  I KNOW Zliten can PR his (his half marathon pace is speedier than the last 5k he ran), and I’m probably pretty close (26:31 is mine from YEARS ago, the best I’ve done recently is 27:58, and that was in 2012), so we’re going to give this a try (probably just on our own, not a race).  Mcmillian thinks I can at least get close to a PR with my most recent mile time (and that was off the bike), but we’ll see.

may21-3

Got some good new food from Costco that is rocking my world.  I know prepared stuff is not as good as cooking myself, but that whole waning motivation thing… yeah.  The fish burgers, the chicken skewers, and the veggie/quinoa bowls are fabulous.  I’m just trying to not eat them too fast.

This week, I’ve taken down about 50 quality trainer miles on the bike, 3 fast running miles (but lots more planned this week), and as of this evening, I’ll have finished my two swims and weights sessions for the week.  Besides some more spinning when I can fit it in, the rest of the week is about my love right now, running.  I’m ready for it to swing that way.  I did such a good ab workout I’ve been playing the “cramps or ab soreness” game where I have to ice my lower abs at night to fall back to sleep.  Bleh.

This will be a busy 3 day weekend.  Saturday, we plan to do said long run with a friend and then go hit up Barton Springs for either a real swim or just an “ice bath” paddling around.  Then, we’re traveling down south to hang out with some friends, and the agenda is smoking pork belly, beer, and wine.

Sunday, we volunteer at packet pickup for the Cap Tex Tri (which we’re NOT doing) and then we’re hosting a BBQ with our friends from out of town and expect to make use of my new blender for margaritas, eat tacos, sing karaoke, and play some cards against humanity.

Monday, I think we’ll try to get some trainer time, but other than that, I expect to do jack and shit.  Looking forward to a lot of fun this weekend!

…and I think that’s all the random I got.  I’ll be back soon with, uh, probably more random.

Question: if you work remotely, what do you do?  Is it full time regular (aka, with benefits, PTO, like working in an office) or contract/part time?  Where would you most like to work remotely from?

4 comments

  1. Carla says:

    OH HOW I LOVE THE ALL OVER THE PLACE POSTS!!!
    me? Id love to blog full time from BALI.
    yes please.

  2. Yum Yucky says:

    I just got done watching some shark attack documentary on NatGEO last night. So obviously, that underwater pic of you is freaking me out! Get back on the boat. PLEASE!!!!

    • zliten says:

      For that picture of her free diving, there was no boat, we swam out from the shore. Some of the best snorkeling ever was just minutes swim from the shore there. I can’t wait to go back next year.