In case you’ve been wondering: What on earth has been keeping you so busy? I mean, seriously. The school year is over. What on earth do you do with all your time?

Well, folks. Here it is. The Vineman 70.3 (Half Ironman) is less than a month away. I am not even close to ready. Below are pictures from an Olympic-distance triathlon I did at the end of May. The pictures may not show it, but I was suffering by the end!


Smiling because the swim was OVER!



Taking off on my bike. It was a COLD day and I was freezing.



The start of my run. My hands were freezing! See the girl next to me? Yeah, she was heading for the finish line.



Finishing my run. I look stronger in this picture than I felt. I walked a good part of the run.


An Olympic distance triathlon is a 0.9 mile swim, 25 mile bike, and 6 mile run. The Vineman is a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, and 13 mile run. Yikes!

I’ve been pretty discouraged about it, honestly. I’ve been doing a lot of training but not getting any stronger. I guess it’s because I’ve not been getting enough protein — I grew up vegetarian and don’t eat a lot of meat — and . . .? I do a group ride with other women every Wednesday night, and every week they kick my butt. And, while I know deep down that, with the right training and nutrition, I could do just as well as anyone else . . . At some point I start to wonder: Is it really worth it? Is it worth three and four hours of exercise a day? Is it worth the worry over every calorie I eat? A lot of triathletes I know lack balance in their lives. Some triathletes exercise as much as 20-30 hours a week — and somewhere along the line everything else gets pushed by the wayside.

I think I will continue doing triathlons when the Vineman is over. I do enjoy the challenge. But I don’t want triathlons to consume my life. Challenges come is all different shapes and sizes, and . . . I want more.


16 thoughts

  1. I have not seen a blog post from you in like two years. I haven’t really been on the Reader that much. But it’s great to see you doing so well. All the best, in everything that you do. :-)

  2. Very good that you are keeping busy and focused on the goals you want to achieve. I’ve always admired athletes for their focus and dedication towards all that training and getting past the finishing line. If you love it and it matters to you, why not do it. Each of us are always on different spectrums of the journey of life, and no two lives are the same in the first place.

    Nice shots of you. You look very focused. Eat well, stay healthy and remember that we all have our limits, physically and mentally. Good luck with the triathlon. I’m cheering you from my part of the world :)

    • Thanks, Mabel! I think you hit it dead on when you said, “If you love it and it matters to you, why not do it.” There are a lot of people out there who love this. I do, too, but I am very hard on myself and have other goals, too. I suppose it’s trying to find the balance between my goals that frustrates me.

  3. Let’s see. I’ve done a 56 mile bike ride. I think if you add up the swimming I’ve done it would exceed a mile. I ran seven miles once in college. Oh wait, these things happen on the same day?

    Seeiously Jess, run walk or crawl across the finish line and you’ve accomplished something few people could dream of. If you want to do it, focus on you and don’t worry about the others in the pack.

    Have a great summer.

  4. You’re definitely looking strong! Your dedication is inspiring, makes me want to get off my chubby butt. All the best with training for the iron man :).

  5. WOW! That is so awesome. Just doing this is serious rock star material. I already know you ARE a rock star, but you LOOK like one in the photos, too! You are so inspiring, Jessica!!

  6. This is awesome Jessica ~ and your attitude perfect. Balance is key, do it out of love (for the mind/body synergy) but also keep other things moving in your life as well. My favorite part of finishing a triathlon: didn’t have to train for the rest of the day (honestly I loved that thought) and ice-cream and beer was on the menu :-)

    • Nice, Randall! I am looking forward to having the Half Ironman behind me. (It’s next Sunday.) Ready for the pressure to be off and to move onto the next thing. What triathlons have you done?

      • Wishing you the best in the Ironman, be nice and relaxed and find the flow. There were a series of triathlons in the PNW (BC / Washington / Oregon) that I competed in late 80s then really got into cycling (thought about building frames and windsurfing my life away in the early 90s) before heading out to China and leaving those dreams way behind :-) Dave Scott (not sure if you have heard of him) was a big hero. Sigh…such great memories!

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