Saturday, July 27, 2013

A million thanks......

My bike is racked and my bags are packed....and the condo is crazy quiet as the kiddos are out swimming on this gorgeous day.  I cannot believe that I am so lucky to be able to start tomorrow and in many ways I feel like a kid the night before a disneyland trip...that is how excited I am.

The journey here has been nothing short of amazing...from my husband, to coaches, and the friends that I have met along the way....I am just incredibly blessed to be surrounded by such generous and inspiring people.  

My experience here was not without a ton of support and help along the way..if you surround yourself with the bes of the best then it makes the training and journey that much easier and FUN.  Hands down I can confidently say that I have done just that.  

First and Foremost...the three pictured below and Ryan...I cannot express enough how thankful I am that you are my number one fans...the excitement that you shared yesterday while you got to race your Ironkids race was enough to melt my heart... Ryan, I know that spectating tomorrow with these three kids will make my day a breeze but I am just so lucky to have you all here. THANK YOU THANK YOU...You make my world complete and full of love and laughter everyday.

My TEAM MILLER support crew that is here in Placid with best friend from college who flew in to be the second parent everyone needs.  Guaranteed my kids will miss Aunt Tara when she leaves but they are having a blast and will make your cheering duties fun.  Finally my parents, who traveled to come and see this race even though it is a haul...I appreciate your support more than you know.

Jen without your knowledge, dedication, and guidance I would have never made it.  I am truly lucky to have you as a coach.  Your ability to help balance family, training and work made this experience so enjoyable and I cannot thank you enough for your support!

Kelly I do not think that I could ask for a better mentor and friend in this sport.  I am so excited that you are here and your generosity in sharing everything you know has been so helpful...I promise that you will not be number 1 on my speed dial in August!  We are a great team and I am excited to see what the future hold for us.

Dr. Heather Moore  while I might think I am the Dr....I know that you are a HUGE reason as to why I am at the start line healthy and uninjured.  You are one of the most dedicated and devoted PT's I have ever met and your passion for athletes is unparalleled.  Thank you for your elbow and your friendship...the best yellow page find I will ever have.  I am truly blessed to work with you and have you in my corner!

Kate Hall  I always saw you tired and you always put me through the ringer but I will be a better athlete because of your help.  You are amazing at what you do!

I have so many training partners and friends who were so helpful, I don't even know where to begin!  My riding buddies, Edgar and Yasi who endured my hilly crazy rides in sometimes sweltering heat.  Joe, who ran long with me and kept me company.   The JHC clan...CarolineJulia, and Sarah (I am still waiting for the wine blog)...thank you thank you for your support!!! The Fleet Feet crew...Heather, Jahnna, Annmarie, Michelle, and Myse...I am glad that I have a job that is SO SO supportive of my crazy lifestyle..The Wholistic Fitness ladies Audrey, Carolina, Jamie, and many inspired me daily to be stronger and crazier than I already am.  The Keystone Crew George, Christine, Joey G, and is just a little nuts that we were all in line a year ago...and it seemed like a year was a lifetime away..Derek I am so excited to become Ironman together..your story is amazing!

I cannot wipe the smile from my face...I am just so excited to be able to have this opportunity and to LOVE this sport and to go 140.6 miles tomorrow is just so awesome.  I know it will not be easy and there will be good and bad parts of tomorrow but not everyone gets to chase their dream and make it a reailty and I am only lucky girl!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Training for Ironman = Better Mom

As Lake Placid gets closer and I find my workouts getting shorter, I have had some time to really think about the process of training for an Ironman.  I became smitten with this distance when I traveled to Lake Placid in 2011 to watch my friend Kelly race.  I had no idea what it really entailed, I knew the distances, but I was really unsure as to how the day would unfold.  Truthfully it was a magical experience, the fans, the energy and the athletes were all amazing. 

I remember calling Ryan and trying to convince him I should sign up...and it was a resounding was not the right time and our kids were very little, 1,3, and 5...but I continued to believe that this was part of a bigger plan. 

In 2012, I went back up to Placid, to see the race and to sign up.  I was ready...for many reasons this was something I was drawn to do.  I am very lucky to be able to fulfill this goal and I am thankful that I have many supporters.

I will say there was a fair amount of nervousness in the planning piece.  I did not want this to take over our lives and I wanted our kids to have a summer.  I wanted their lives to not be spent waiting for me to get home from the bike and for out family to have some time together...and suffice to say I think we accomplished that.  Today we were running errands and Aly told someone we were going on vacation,  Lake Placid where we get to swim, Iowa where we see our cousins and then NH where we take the train.  Yep, mission accomplished not a word about this race looming over my head.

Along the way though...I do think that training for Ironman made me a better mom for several reasons:

I learned not to sweat the small stuff - the dishes lay undone at night so I could go to bed wiht the kids and get enough sleep and the car began to be my locker room...thank goodness for a minivan.  In the end no one cared and I got done what I needed to.  I let go of the things I could not control weather, sick kids, and folllowed theplan as best I was not always perfect but in the end it was okay.

I grew my friendship circle.  While this may seem small, it really wasn't.  When you stay home, work part time and shuttle your kids to event after event, you spend an absurd amount of time talking to other moms.  I enjoy the social outlet, I also find it to be a breeding ground of comparison and competition.  I worked my schedule so I often would arrive at said event as my kids were finishing...sweaty and clear off a workout;  instead of  worrying about what I had or had not done well I was befriending an entire new set of friends.  I was lucky to have awesome riding and running partners and none of their stories are like my own...and it was refreshing.  I have made some awesome friends throughout this year and I am lucky that they are part of my life.

I allowed myself to set the a goal and be proud of it.  Completing an ironman is not for everyone...but it was an important one for me.  Our family dynamnics are such that a lot of the parenting falls on my shoulders...with Ryan gone a majority of each week, I needed an outlet.  So I looked forward to my Friday rides, because they were my own time and there was lots of silence while I was riding or running.  I believe that you need to be happy in your career and your life and this allowed me some much needed away time.  It also allowed me to do something for myself...lets face it at the end of the one says good job parenting today...tomorrow might be easier.

I cannot do it all.  While I manage quite a few balls in the air, there are many that I need to let go of.  I maintained that I would continue to remain as non helicopter active parent as I could.  It also meant that I could say NO...and this was hard because I say YES a lot  Yes to playdates, friends over, parties, dinners, making treats, and work.  Truthfully though, this was a great time to start the ball rolling.   It does make me think that I will think twice about what is really best for us.

I am excited, nervous and happy to be healthy and ready to toe the line at Lake Placid.  I think that the journey has been amazing and quite fulfilling.  I am lucky that my family and tons of my friends will be there to support me this weekend.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Summer Swimming

We are in the thick of summer swimming and the girls are having a blast.  Aly has wanted to swim on swimteam for the past year...and I have been hesitant to start her, mostly because I really want her to have fun..and I know she will but she is competitive and she likes to do well.

Slowly over the summer, they have introduced all the strokes...and Aly has been smitten with the fly for a while. In the past week every time we went to the pool, she wanted to practice and she wanted my help so she could make the length.  Last night, they entered her into the event...and I was hoping she would not get DQ'd....and she did not.  She was just so excited, to swim "the hardest one"  right.

and I know we might just be in this for the long haul.  Last night as the meet was winding down..10pm - which is just a killer.  She said - I think I found my thing mom...I just really like swimming and want to swim winter

oh we come baby

but the truth is...we have tried lots and lots of, gymnastics, sports fun classes and she just did not love them...but she is just so fun at the pool.

so this might just be my view for the next several years...and to be perfectly honest..I am just fine with that...maybe even a little excited

and this one...she just keeps everyone laughing..not a competitive bone in her body.  She will swim for skittles and smiles.  Coach Beth was yelling from the pool deck ...C'mon Brianna SWIM!!!  and she stopped and said...I AM GOING as FAST as I can!  Gotta love the honest 5 year old!


Friday, July 12, 2013


Summer is moving too fast!!!  Summer gardening, summer play dates and great weather!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Fourth of July Fun!

A busy week and tons of fun in our house as we celebrated with multiple fireworks and outings.  

The heat wave continues and the kids are spending their days at the pool which is not a bad thing and ensures a quick and easy bedtime for sure.

We spent the fourth at Sesame Place and it was jam packed...the nice thing is that we have been so many times it does not seem to phase the kids if we don't run around like maniacs to get everything in.  We parked ourselves at the waterpark and stayed for a good 2+ hours.

Which resulted in this quiet trip home..