I will not let grief define me.

What was I thinking?

I am four weeks out from IRONMAN Chattanooga on September 30th and have started asking myself, “what were you thinking?” signing up for another IRONMAN. I then go back 10 months ago to the IRONMAN World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. In my mind I know I went there to finish the race, but deep down I was not pleased with my performance.

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Life after Bill: I Still Have A Lot of Living To Do

The months since my husband, Bill, died, and racing in Kona, have made me realize how important working out and staying active are to me. When Bill passed away, I lost more than just my husband. My world, as I knew it, changed in every way. I am no longer a wife, and I live alone (with our dog).

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Race Report for Ironman World Championship, October 14, 2017

I first want to thank Patrick Fellows, my son, and my coach, for having the patience to get me as ready as possible for the race. Bill was my biggest fan. He didn’t understand triathlon, but was always supportive. He liked triathlon just about as much as I liked hockey. Bill’s illness and losing him 6 weeks before the race affected my training and focus. Jeanne, Paige, and Ian were there to support me the entire week. I also want to thank Robbie Wiedie of Cutwater, Freddy Minze, and of course Brawny Towels, which generously sponsored me. Blue Seventy, Roka, and Hoka were all a generous help. Pro racer Chris McDonald hand-delivered my Brawny kit, made by OwnWayApparel, on Tuesday night.

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Two Months to Kona

I can hardly believe it is only two months to Kona. I have been putting in the hours training.   Often times my heart isn’t in it, but maybe just doing it will instill the toughness I am going to need to complete the distance.

The summer heat of Mississippi is upon us. The days are hot and humid. Some days the heat index is in the high 90s and low 100s. Running in this heat is a constant reminder that hydration is such an important part of this sport. Most of my cycling has been in the house on my trainer due to my husband’s health. Swimming, even the long distances, has been my salvation. When I said, last month, that Ironman training was going to be a stress reliever I did not know how true those words were.

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Ironman Training as Stress Relief

I never thought I would be using Ironman training as a stress reliever.

It happens.

My training is definitely ramping up. Swim workouts are now 2300-3000 yards, bike rides, mostly on my trainer, are one hour during the week and the long rides are 4 hours, and my runs are now 1:00-1:30. I was letting my weight workouts slide and have started back doing those twice a week. 

There are days when my heart is not in it, but I do the workout and manage to feel better.

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The Ups and Downs of Life!

This journey I am on is getting me more attention than I deserve. I don’t see what I am doing as any big deal. I love training and challenging myself. Triathlons and running have become a passion for me.  Life is such a rollercoaster ride.

Back in November, shortly after Ironman Florida, my son started texting me, asking me questions about my thoughts about finishing the Ironman.

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Stepping It Up

So much has happened in the past few weeks.

I retired!

Three weeks ago I taught my last class for Tulane University’s School for Professional Advancement. I enjoyed my 13 years teaching in Biloxi and New Orleans. I did leave my name on the roster and may go back occasionally. So far my three weeks has been busy. Not busy enough though.

I don’t think I was made to relax.

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It's All About the Base!

It’s all about the base!

The month of March has been very busy. I continue to work on building a base for the most important 20 weeks of training. I enjoy training, however, I become so focused on the long-range plan I sometimes forget to enjoy running.

This month I have made a list of races, running and triathlons, that I want to do before summer. I began to race again, but now with a different focus: I want to go out and have some fun.

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Laissez les bons temps rouler!

It is time for Mardi Gras. My life is not all work and training. There are times for just plain “mindless fun,” and that time of year is during Mardi Gras.

Many people think Mardi Gras is the 4-5 days before Ash Wednesday and occurs in New Orleans. Actually it begins on the Epiphany and the parades in our cities began yesterday.  For the next couple of weeks there are parades in most cities along the Gulf Coast from the Florida panhandles to Texas. Some other “inland” cities also have parades. I am a member of a group of women called the “Chili Pepper Queens.” We participate in two parades each year, a Mardi Gras and St. Patrick’s Day parades.

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