Monday, September 29, 2008
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Some of you dear readers may feel like you are watching a car wreck in slow motion. I get that. real time though..... real time.
Saturday I cried tears of joy as I mounted little blue, and had a great ride on my Computrainer. Little Blue is my baby blue Cervelo P2K. It's got 650 wheels and I don't care what you say about a 5'10 girl riding 650 wheels..... there is something about that bike. I love it. I will always love little blue.
During my 60 minute ride I was able to obtain and maintain tempo efforts without any issues at all. While I didn't run off the bike yet, I got off with a pain level of 1. I am trying to be smart...... I ran about 2 miles with pain of 2. I have to be careful because I worked last evening. It's homecoming weekend so there are a lot of injured football players. Patients looked at me so strangely last night as I paraded around with scrubs and a Fuel Belt..... that I found an ace wrap in the ortho pit and that worked just fine. It's funny because the run girdle does not eliminate the pain but it gives you a feeling of stability. Which again I realize is a huge problem.
I hope you are all taking notes on this. The beauty secrets of Mary Eggers.
I don't know about you but I am a planner. I like to stare at a week of training and I like to check things off the list. Not only have I no plan for a taper, I have not had a plan for any given day for 2 weeks now. I can't plan anything at all because I have to make a decision based on how I feel that day.
It's the strangest feeling. What shall I do today???
I didn't even decide to throw in some tempo efforts this morning until I got on the bike and warmed up. I am just going from gut here. Who knows what taper will look like. Short workouts with some tempo efforts. I hope it works.
It will be a busy week, that's for sure. I have 80 hours of vacation and I only work 20 hours a week. Being in the hospital setting I frequently stack my hours at the beginning of one week and at the end of the following so I don't have to use that vacation. It's like money. I like to save it and look at the big numbers.
I certainly could have taken vacation for Texas, but I chose not to. I did for IMFL!!! So I have 3 days of just 8 hour shifts..... and then the big hell. I have a class on Wednesday for the next five Wednesdays from 8am - 6pm. I would much rather do an Ironman every Wednesday than be in a class. However this class covers all of my electives for my degree and could give me what I need to launch into a whole new tax bracket. Yeah, it's that good of a class!
Miss proactive that I am I did email my instructor and let her know I crashed my bike and have a back injury (which undoubtedly threw up the this girl is a wacko flag....) to ask if it would be okay if I periodically stood in the back of the room rather than sit. I am very sure she won't let me lay down.
I am so tempted but I never ask..... can I just bring my bike and trainer? Because I listen much better while in motion!
So we shall continue on the road we have been on (We???? Yes, you and I). The border of winging it, going form my gut, knowing what I want to do kinda sorta....... and not going crazy. I still have my cup of HTFU and my friends wing and prayer are already in my suit case. Next to my point zero3 speed suit. And my helmet. And my run girdle. I might just wear pink compression socks to really complete the look.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 8:42 AM
Friday, September 26, 2008
Posted by Mary Eggers at 9:12 PM
If you are tired of reading about my back, my husband is tired of listening and I am tired of living it! HA HA! Thursday was a good day, only a bike ride and a Dr. Mike Adjustment. Periods of pain and no pain. Today I run and I can not wait.
Today I also have to go to bat for my son, as we do every single year. He's a kid with some special needs, and he's come a long way. But nonetheless every year we get called into school at about this time, to listen to how bad he is.
In this kid's 8 years of life he has been told how horrible he is by every adult in the academic world. Then we wonder why kids have such trouble in life?
Last year we created an amazing plan and group of strategies with an incredible child psychologist who simply told the teachers "I wish you would all stop provoking this kid." And the same thing is happening again. He'll be called in again.
We didn't change schools but some of the players in the team have changed.
We sat Luc down last night and we reminded him..... we love him. We are always on his side no matter what. That he can always count on us to protect him.
What I will fail to understand is how people within the academic world can have degrees and "experience" in special education and completely fail to ask, understand or even work with a plan that was previously set forth....
This is what I will never understand the most......... these same teachers, these special education teachers consistently ..... consistently........ CONSISTENTLY....... remind these children of what they can not do.
UNTIL A CHILD PSYCHOLOGIST ARRIVED ON THE SCENE........ THEY NEVER TRIED TO BUILD ON WHAT LUC CAN DO.
Frankly it really pisses me off.
Once we build from what he can do....... he succeeds. This is not rocket science everyone. This is a simple concept.
So today Curt and I will sit at the round table as we have done so many times before. They will try to tell me that Luc just bursts out and hits other children. I will tell them he won't do that unless he is provoked. They will smile and shake their heads and tell me he is unprovoked.
God give me the strength to not say BULLSHIT.
I will keep a small checklist of all the negative things that will be said versus the positive things. In fact I can tell you exactly what they are going to say.
I can tell you this..... we bring in this specialist again and he will say the same thing. Stop provoking this kid and build on what he can do instead of continually reminding him of what he can't do.
And what happened after that meeting last year???? Luc became the first special education kid to be awarded..... student of the month. Please excuse the hair.... Curt took him to school that day. Blad men feel they don't ahve to brush their son's hair.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 5:03 AM
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Below we have Erik Grimm, Myself and Dr. Les the magic chiro. Oh, and the swim helmet, which Bree has asked to wear during our swim next week in Texas.......
Posted by Mary Eggers at 2:37 PM
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Posted by Mary Eggers at 5:47 PM
Monday, September 22, 2008
One day at a time Mary, one day at a time.
Patience Mary, patience.
The words you have all given me fill me with hope. I realize that this 70.3 race is going to be done on heart more than anything else. But to have moments of doubt and fear mixed with feelings of confidence... that's natural.
Sunday I was able to bike with no pain. I cried because I was so happy. I did it on the roads. I took a few seconds every ten minutes of the hour to get out of the saddle and flex my back. When I dismounted at the end of 60 I wanted to go further..... but I had no pain. And it was dark.
I headed over to the pool and water ran for 60 minutes. It was after 8pm and the pool was filled with college kids. When you hang at a university like I do the scenery changes from old folks doing water aerobics to youngsters donning suits of all sorts (strong bikini world..... on those who shouldn't be wearing them....).
At RIT there are 3 pools. An 8 lane 25 meter pool. A recreation pool that is a little warmer with a current and lazy river. And the diving well which hosts 2 X 3 meter boards and 2 X 1 meter board. With kids jumping off the boards there is plenty of room for me to water run. Between all 3 pools plus a picture window to the weight room.... I have lots of entertaining things to watch. An hour actually passes quickly.
I especially loved the snowboarder who practiced his stunts off the 1 meter diving board. He was awesome.
I was able to run without pain. I felt so happy. Maybe I thought.... maybe this could happen for me. All I have gained over the past year can't be completely lost in one week.
It's been 11 days since i have run on land and it does make me nervous.
Tomorrow morning I start four consecutive days of adjustments with Dr. Mike. Dr Les has had the nerve to take a 2 week vacation. I know.... I thought the same thing. He has assured me Dr. Mike will give me a great adjustment. I am most concerned about my favorite one:
The Yamaguchi-Triple-Lundi-Mach-Five. With a twist. Please do not forget the twist Dr. Mike.
With these daily adjustments I could be running Tuesday, or Wednesday. One day at a time. I can't even plan the week much less the taper.
Then those moments of doubt creep in..... will this ever heal at all?
I have to have faith. I have to believe.
I know that in Austin I will be the girl with the most heart. The weather is looking better and the water is still warm. I wonder if it is too hot ..... will they put the run into the water?
A 13 mile water run?
Now we are talking. If that becomes the case than this entire field better watch the heck out. especially you Wee. Because I will state right here and right now that if Longhorn 70.3 becomes a water run because the air temperature is just too hot to run on land...... every single one of you is in deep trouble.
Why? Because Kloner won't be there and by that day I will be the world's best water runner.
Consider yourselves warned.
Until then I will continue to take this one day at a time. Without a plan but with a big dream. Isn't that how this all began after all? A race, a finish line, a thought, a dream and a lot of uncertainty of exactly how we will get there?
I will. I don't know how I will get there..... I just know I will.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 5:30 PM
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Posted by Mary Eggers at 2:55 PM
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Curt's been in Oregon all week prepping for USAT Age Group Nationals! I am so fortunate that we have a very fun relationship. I have a friend at work who has a very volatile relationship and I am convinced it is because she is constantly trying to change her husband. Curt and I do our own laundry, neither of us care about a clean house (ha ha!) and I have to say..... I married the guy because I like him just the way he is.
He loves his car, his Honda Civic. It's in some ways his man cave. Neat, pristine! I have a Toyota Rav 4 which he refers to as the locker room.
But while Curt is away, Luc and Mary shall play........ we sent him a few pictures that were sure to light the fire underneath him...... we call it creative inspiration:
I made sure to leave all my coffee cups for him to clean up.......
I didn't want his car to feel left out from being called the locker room:
And what husband wouldn't just love to have their wife play "How low can I go", and then PARK IT..... to be found on Monday morning.......
In other news..... my back feels very good. The pain is gone. Gone? GONE. Today I test it out with a 60 minute spin on the trainer and a 30 minute treadmill run. If all goes well I hope to spin again tonight on the trainer.
It's my SI joint and it was completely immobile.
Standing outside of the door of my treatment room at the office of Dr. Les (my new BFF) it might have sounded suspicious. But after three tries and Mary's screaming....... it cracked.
IT cracked. Does everyone else scream when adjusted? Seems like in the entire office..... only I do. Is that normal? (Don't answer)/
The joint that hasn't cracked or moved and has caused me debilitating PAIN for 8 days. It cracked and I let out the most incredible sigh of exasperated relief. It took my pain from today's 6...... to a 1. I still can't believe that all it took, was a few adjustments. Some of you saw how I could not walk..... Karen W from work witnessed it all day Tuesday!
I came home and rode the trainer for 45 of the happiest moments of my entire life. I am not racing on Sunday. I am not racing on Sunday. I am cancelling Luc's trip to Granny's on Saturday night because I lack that much self control.
The only way I won't race is if I have a 70 pound 8 year old with a Mohawk strapped to my leg. I am THAT addicted. I lack THAT much self control. I am a complete BEAR IN A CAGE. And I will be in Austin racing my little..... no..... my BIG heart out.
Swear to GOD I WILL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Maybe this was just what I needed. Some forced rest. In the past year I have done 2 and part of one... Ironmans. I have trained upwards of 20 hours a week at this pace, at this wattage, at this effort.... and I have neglected my spine care... Maybe pain was the only way to stop me. All the compressing of this joint..... which I knew was a hot spot.
I am very good at learning the hard way.
It's not over yet. I warn myself to not get my hopes too high. I go back Tuesday, Wed and Thurs. Dr. Les will be in Montana (I know, at a time like this!) but I will be seeing his partner, my new substitute BFF Dr. Mike. Who knows? Maybe we can have a three way BFF ring.
Keep it clean kids...... keep it clean.
One day at a time. One step at a time.
Sunday I will ride the roads for 2 hours and again run. If I am pain free I will carefully plan a big week and them Yee Haw........ game on my friends!
Posted by Mary Eggers at 5:18 AM
Thursday, September 18, 2008
We saw this car the other night at RIT. If I ever meet the owner i will slap them. The "energy" they will be saving by being green will be wasted when they see how much fuel is needed to power up the jaws of life to get their sorry body out of this thing after an accident. I don't care how many airbags you have. Get hit by an eighteen wheeler and leave your kids memories of how you tried to save the world.
Okay…. I was wrong. And I am eating my words.
Yesterday I saw my good friend, my chiropractor who is also my lane mate, former cycling buddy until we had the big crash of 03, and as of right now my new BFF. I could loudly pronounce the benefits of Chiropractics to you, but you already know. I am not ashamed to be a fair weather fan either….. hell I am from Buffalo NY, home of the Buffalo Bills. I needn't say more.
Anyhow….. Dr. Les Lange of Greater Rochester Chiropractic saw me in May of 2007 for my little back issue. Then it was muscular and at that time he lectured me on my neglectful spine care. I have scoliosis so it was important.
Truthfully I knew he was right. But if I had an hour in my day I would spend it training rather than being adjusted. Seems it has caught up to me.
We determined this is not muscular as I thought. Evidenced by the massage on Tuesday….. no trigger points, no sore muscles. Evidenced by the same thing with Dr. Les. He assessed my spine functionality. Now remember that your spine was designed to bend and twist. I am a yoga teacher and when healthy I can not only do a backbend, I can back bend and rest on my forearms. So normally my flexion and extension is good.
Thursday……. not so much.
The only time I experienced pain was bending forward. When he tried to bend me back I couldn't, but not because of pain. Which led him to conclude this was in fact structural, but not disc. This is good news.
One of the reasons I don't get cracked is because I hate to be cracked. Call it control, call it whatever. But I was in so much pain that relaxing into the arms of Dr. Les with my right leg here, my arms crossed; me twisted…… that felt fine.
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Five more cracks and an instant 50% reduction in pain.
"You'll be ready for Austin." He told me. "You will be pool running by Friday, running by Monday and flip turning by Wednesday." Honestly I don't care if I flip turn at all before December.
He also instructed me to limit sitting to driving. "Either stand or lay down." He said.
I walked a mile with Luc and it was good. I spun an easy 45 minutes and it was pretty good.
It's sore, I will admit to that. But it is the first big improvement in a week. Hooray! I can put away the Flexoril (this isn't a muscular issue….. although it was a nice magic carpet ride…) and I moved my computer to the island counter in the kitchen.
I get cracked today, and every day until we can back it up to once a week, once every two weeks and then once a month. I will never neglect my spine care again.
Now note this: had sticking needles in my eyes cured this pain I'd be standing here typing to you the benefits of needle-in-the-eye-sticking. I am not afraid to jump on a bandwagon. Remember: Buffalo Bills.
If cracking me works then you can crack me all the way from here to Austin Texas. If no sitting is the order then hell on the place I will stand (once we reach altitude of course). Man, that would mean I have come a long way; I have flown to Hawaii 2 times without even leaving my seat for a 12 hour flight.
So if you see a tall girl with gnarly brown hair and pink compression socks (just to irritate my coach I wear them ;-), standing in the back of the plane with a death grip on a seat (what if the top of the plane rips off? COME ON!!!) Then come on back and talk to me. I will tell you the benefits of chiropractics.
Before then however I am off to find Dr. Les and I matching BFF bracelets.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 1:53 PM
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Why do I have such aversion to medications? Side effects. I hate them. It isn't like you take a Flexoril and it goes to the affected muscle. Medications have systemic effects. They mess with your head, cause fatigue, etc. But this time I had to concede and I will admit.... it has helped tremendously.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 9:25 PM
Posted by Mary Eggers at 8:39 AM
2008 Has not been kind to the girls of Camp HTFU. Marit crashed first. Then Ashley. I crashed last week, which for the past 6 days has rendered me having a difficult time walking. The pain I am currently in is so excruciating I can barely write. Today Jen Harrison was in a car accident. She will be okay.
We will all be okay. My injury is going to heal. We are all going to heal. Together we will pull through.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 1:01 AM
Monday, September 15, 2008
A message from Michael Hollstrom...... friend of Zach DeRidder, who is surviving cancer:
And click here to see a great inspiring video!
My friend Zach DeRidder is a 23 year-old cancer triathlete and a finalist in a video contest to win an autographed bike signed by Lance Armstrong. During the summer of 2007, I followed him around New York State filming him and cheering him on as he finished an unbelievable 16 athletic events with a tumor on his liver the size of two grapefruits. While undergoing treatment for liver cancer, Zach completed a total of 8 triathlons, 1 dauthlon, 6 foot races, and 1 century bike ride. I helped my friend start his own foundation to raise money for cancer, launch a website, and raise over $1000 for a cross-country bike trip he hoped to take in the near future . . .
Then in Sept 2007, Zach was hospitalized unexpectedly and fell into a near-fatal coma. In the hospital he lost his strength, his weight, his memory, and almost his life. With surgical removal of the tumor impossible and after being rejected for a liver transplant, Zach returned home to his family in November and began re-learning how to read, tie his shoes, and do just about everything. Not surprisingly, Zach quickly started gaining his strength back by doing push-ups, sit-ups, walking, and biking. Throughout 2008, Zach has been in and out of the hospital for comparatively minor issues such as kidney stones.
Miraculously, an MRI in August 2008 found that Zach's tumor shrunk for the first time since it was discovered in December 2005. Liver cancer messed with the wrong man! Zach's on his way to accomplishing his biggest goals of beating cancer, going to college, and starting a family.
Today, Lance Armstrong offers us a chance to share Zach's incredible story to build public awareness of cancer and inspire everyone we know to face difficult challenges with courage and optimism. He put out a video contest last month daring you to send him a video describing how you dared to make a difference in your life and in the lives of others by overcoming serious obstacles.
Lance's team selected Zach as a finalist (mhallstr4). Now it's up to us to select Zach as the winner of the autographed bike.
1. Email this message to everyone you know.
2. Vote for Zach's video (mhallstr4) on this website once a day through Sunday, Sept 21: http://www.livestrong.com/contest/youtube-share-your-story/
Thank you on behalf of Zach, his friends, his family, and everyone affected by cancer for forwarding this message to everyone you know and helping Zach win the autographed bike.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 8:56 PM
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Posted by Mary Eggers at 7:37 AM
Friday, September 12, 2008
I can't believe it. I crashed my bike. Not because of anything glorious either. I was in the middle of a 120 minute tempo session. My head was down. My preceding tempo run was great. reverse acclimation was in full swing and my feet were frozen.
When I rode off the rode and into someones lawn. Crash, flip, boom.
The good news: I kept my wits about me as I was falling and I kept my head up.
The bad news: I landed on my right hip.
The good news: I have no road rash.
The bad news: I have nothing to show for this!
The good news: I landed on my right hip which triggered the old "right side of my back / hip tightness problem" that I frequently encounter, from when I was hit by a car running some 10 years ago.
The other good news: I am in one piece and my bike is fine. I am lucky.
I picked myself up and finushed the ride. I completed my second tempo run and headed to the pool. The tightness grew so much I could not flip turn.
Game over for today.
We all have our litte injuries and we have our own way of dealing with them. For example I partially tore my Achilles in 2006. What works for me when I have any sort of AT issue is heat. The AT's have a poor blood flow. The only time I ice my AT's are in an ice bath. For me heat on the AT works wonders.
My back.... I have scoliosis so there is a weak spot there which I combat with strength training and flexibility. So when it gets tight I can tell because my hamstrings will get tighter. I never use ice on my back.... I use heat. For 24 hours I don't touch it. I let it be still. Then I go to work.
There is nothing a chiropractor can do to fix it. It's my structure. I also won't make an angry muscle angrier by touching it all of the time. So I do my fix for an hour and then I leave it be.
Already much much better. I am grateful because I know this injury.
I am lucky that I broke nothing. I am lucky it is just this. And I know I know..... intervals like this should be done on the trainer!
Posted by Mary Eggers at 11:53 AM
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
For the record..... thank you for the emails about Ironman Canada again opening spots for the 2009 race. My decision not to sign up is final. We are over for another three years. Ironman divorce is final. I am not signing up. I am not signing up.
Kelly and I continued our Austin heat training program with a 120 minute ride in 65 degrees of sunshine today. To make it really worth it we dressed warm. I even wore my favorite Postal Service Jersey.... fleece on the inside!!!!!!
We swam today at Nazareth.... which just might be the coldest pool in the area. I figured if I was freezing my butt off I would wish I was in the warm balmy waters of Austin.
I received this hilarious gift from two of my craziest athletes: Karin and Matt Kellman. It is a giant poster of the Ironman swim. I am the one in the pink cap....... just in case I have forgotten my Ironman lake Placid experience...... (and that white spot is the flash..... not the sonic boom that happened when I got hit....)
Here Luc is jumping off the three meter dive....... something Curt Eggers will not do!
Posted by Mary Eggers at 5:48 PM
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
An email from the Longhorn 70.3.... or what are we calling these races now...... Ironman Texas 70.3 .... revealed that the lake in which we shall be swimming in next month...... is 90 degrees.
90. Ninety. Nine zero.
I don't think I have ever swam in water that warm. Like..... ever. Which is why you might have seen Kim, Kelly and I doing our workout in the hot tub this morning. Next to cups. Who drinks from cups and jumps up and down at the end of the lane.
That is not a joke.
Anyhow...... 90 degrees of swimming may change things a bit. Like no wetsuit. And maybe not even a skin suit. Possibly just skin if you know what I mean. This could very well become the nude swim in Texas.
A look through last year's results and the seemingly slower times were well explained by the hundred degree heat. Suddenly this race could easily become about who races the smartest rather than who races the fastest.
I have never been stellar in the heat but each time I race in Africa Hot weather I handle it better. While I might take a bottle of S! caps I get through it. And I will find a way to persevere through this one as well.
Now comes the question....... how on earth do I simulate Texas heat in Rochester NY when outside my window it is a chill 65 degrees?
Clothing of course. It is scientifically proven that if you simply dress warmer...... that it is just like the hotter climates. I swear! If you believe that then click here for SwimmingPeaks 1.0, you will fall in love with this software.
The truth of the matter is..... I can't really simulate Austin up here in Rochester. Sure I could bring the bike into the bathroom with the shower on HOT and the steam .... but that truly wont' simulate actual conditions. I can dress as warm as I want.... but again that won't do.
I just have to rely on past experience and plan ahead. Strategery as they call it, my favorite George W Bush invented word.
Strategery is devising a strategy. Combating fluid loss, salt intake, caloric expenditure, pace, etc. Trying to figure it all out and then when the gun goes off hope that like the lotto.... I have more than just close enough.
Actually close enough will do me just fine as well.
So I can spend the next few weeks worrying. Or I can spend the next few weeks working hard and preparing to have the best race I can in any conditions. What it will truly come down to, more powerful than heat or distance...... is that space between my ears.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 5:20 PM
Monday, September 8, 2008
goggles to wear, warm ups before a triathlon, and even some stroke technique.
Posted by Mary Eggers at 8:20 AM
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Posted by Mary Eggers at 8:50 AM