This is my journey from couch to athlete.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy 2010

Just a short post to wish everyone a happy new year! May we all live by our values and find balance!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Turning a year older

I haven't posted in a while for a few reasons, but as someone wished me a happy birthday today on facebook they requested an update so I figured it was time to at least put something down.

This is always an interesting time of year when you look back at this year and forward to the next. It's kind of strange, I would have never predicted how things happened this year but in the end it all turned out like I thought it would. I didn't participate in a single race this year. Actually, I haven't stood at a start line since Ironman. I decided to keep the option open to do GWN again since I had a rollover entry but I still feel absolutely no urge to train or do a race.

I can't even say I tried the P90X challenge. I only made it through a couple of workouts. The trainer on the videos is really irritating, and I found the workouts had too much time standing around doing nothing because you were so fatigued. Spending over an hour doing pushups and chin-ups isn't effective; you do as many as you can and then you sit around until the next set starts. I like the plyometrics and kenpo workouts though. I would much rather do a full body crossfit workout a couple of times a week then that program.

The downside is that I've put on some weight. All the work I put in last year to lose the weight has been wasted. In some ways it's been frustrating having to stick to a restricted eating plan in order to keep the weight off. For the past couple of months I have been trying to motivate myself to go back on my eating plan. I didn't even hate it when I was on it, and I saw great results, yet I just haven't been able to commit to it again.

We'll see what 2010 brings...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Sorry for the cliffhanger

Sorry it's been so long since I've written, and thanks for the comments - I really appreciate them.

Obviously the last post was a real low point. I kept feeling like something was on the horizon and was trying hard not to keep sliding down but I just couldn't seem to stop it (even if it wasn't totally logical.)

What goes down, must come up! Maybe not according to gravity but in life. I landed a job that I REALLY wanted and so far it has not failed to meet my hopes and expectations. For someone in my field (corporate training and education) I don't think there is any better place to be. Now that work is sorted out, it's time to start putting the other pieces back together - my health and well being.

It's amazing how everything totally unravels. I would have never guessed that at a time when I had so much free time I couldn't get off my butt and exercise. Last year when I was training for Ironman I would have given anything to have that many free hours in a day but for some reason I just had no motivation to eat well or exercise. The longer I was off work, the worse it got. My diet has definitely improved since I started working again but my weight does not seem to appreciate that for some reason. My theory is that over the last six months I've slowly lost muscle composition and now it's at a point where my metabolism has slowed down. For months I didn't gain any weight even though I wasn't eating that well or exercising. I've only gained 5lbs, it's not the end of the world but it is time to address it, and how do I plan to do this?
THE KERRY AND JORDAN P90X CHALLENGE! (yep Jordan, now it's in writing for the world to see.)
Jordan and I are going to try the P90X program. This program has had me intrigued for a while now. I loved cross fit and full body training and I saw awesome benefits from it. I've never been shy to share my successes and failures with those of you that read, so I promise I will update as often as possible to let you know how it's going. I will try to take some before pics (something I have failed to do throughout my journey and I always regret afterwards) and a few base measurements. No promises I'm going to follow 100%. I don't like to over commit and then end up quitting and feeling like a total failure. I'm going to start with the exercise and then work on the diet. I do think if I just get my butt in gear, the weight will fall off anyway (and we all know how diet adverse I am.)
I'll update soon, thanks again for following.

Sunday, July 19, 2009


I haven't updated in a while because not much has really changed and I think Jordan is the only person left who still reads. I understand that it was way more interesting to follow the half iron and Ironman training than the collapse that has proceeded the Ironman DNF. I really feel like that DNF was meant to be a colossal life lesson that was going to make me a better person. It definitely gave me perspective on life balance and how much that kind of training interferes with things that are truly important. I thought I had made sense of it all and learned my lesson (while I still had a family and friends) but that dnf followed by a job lay off has seriously damaged my sense of self worth. I know logically that both events were the result of things beyond my control but I just can't seem to shake the feeling that I toppled from the top of the world.I went from being a student, full time employee, and triathlete to nothing. I know there is more out there for me, and coaching gave me a taste of doing something beyond myself, but right now I need to take care of my career and life. My motivation to do anything has completely hit the skids and now with a heel spur and a persistent sore back, I can't run or do crossfit. It's common knowledge that I exercise as much for my mental health as my physical so it's just a downward spiral. I know when this falls together - it's all going to fix itself quickly but right now there are times when I just can't see the light...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Burnout or change of heart?

No big news to report but here's an update...

Finishing up my courses this week and have thoroughly enjoyed learning Flash and Adobe Illustrator. I love the challenge of it and being creative gets my blood flowing. I'm really grateful I had the opportunity to take these courses and expand my skills. I am a little worried that the reality of not having a job is going to start to get me down again. Being in school gave me a focus and a distraction from job searching. I have still been looking but not getting down at the scarcity of positions in my field.

Two weeks from today I'll be congratulating each one of my clinic participants on becoming a triathlete! It's going to be an awesome day. Coaching the clinic has been very fulfilling. I received a flattering comment the other week, while we were training one of my clinic members says to me, "this is the best money I have ever spent!" It felt good to hear someone say that what I have provided was worth spending money on. Of course there are things I can do better next time but overall I'm happy with how the clinic has gone.

My physical health:
I still am not following any set training plan for anything. Two weeks ago I went out with my friends and ran 12kms. I surprised myself feeling so good even though I hadn't run that far in months. Then last week we ran 15kms; which went ok but my body was hurting at the end. My lower back, left ITB and knees were really sore by the end. The next day I felt tired and only had minimal muscle soreness. I know that 15kms was beyond the limit I am currently in shape for so I opted out of their 18km run today.

I have been riding 2-3 times a week, either with the clinic or trail riding. I LOVE trail riding! To me it's pure enjoyment. I have only been riding wide easy trails though. The other week I watched the Xterra world championships and felt this urge to race for the first time since Ironman. Then reality hit and I realized that my xc riding skills really aren't up to racing standards yet.

I have been slacking with the crossfit the last couple of weeks but am working on getting back on track because the results from these were definitely worth the effort. My arms and upper body have more shape and are much more toned and I notice the improved core strength in everything I do.

Following the eating plan fell apart after I was laid off. I still consider what I'm eating, how much and how often. I learned lessons that I will carry with me for a lifetime, even if I'm not tracking my food or following the plan to the letter. My weight is holding at 151, so I have been very careful not to put the 15lbs back on. For me it was always about something sustainable. Although, sometimes I do catch myself wishing for 6 pack abs etc. but I know the kind of diet discipline it would take to get there. I can feel the stomach muscles so I know they're there; I would have to drop all the fat for them to be visible though and I'm not willing to do that for vanity.

And now for the title of this post - burnout or change of heart?
I watched Coronation Tri the other week and the Xterra World Championships on tv. Both times I felt like I wanted to be out there racing. But once my logic kicks in and I start thinking about the training required to do those races I just shut down because I can't imagine living my life on a training schedule again. When I look back on my journey to Ironman all I remember is "having" to do all those workouts. Every day I had to swim, bike or run. Now I can't imagine living that way anymore. I like just doing whatever I want, when I want. I like being in good enough shape that I can go out and ride trails for two hours or go hiking without suffering. I like having the options and being able to enjoy activities because I have the fitness base.

I rolled over my Great White North entry but at this point I don't know if I even want to do it next year either. Someone once told me that burnout lasts about a year. Now I'm wondering if this is going to lift and one day I am just going to start feeling the urge to train and race again or if my attitude towards exercise really has changed forever????

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Foray in to coaching

This is going to be two parts, a personal update and (as the title indicates) my coaching debut.

Triathlon bootcamp
My idea for this clinic has been brewing for a couple of years. I have done some speaking engagements on the benefits of cross training for runners. After talking about cross training and triathlon, it was inevitable that at least one person would approach me and say, "I'd love to get in to triathlon but where do I go to get started?" It's been an awesome experience to watch this idea come to life (and the timing couldn't have been better.) I am so excited because we managed to get the exact target group I was looking for; beginners looking to finish their first triathlon and have fun. I really enjoy leading the workouts and sharing my knowledge with the group. So far, a very positive experience.

The other stuff
The job situation is still coming together. A real downside to my personality type is paralysis by analysis. I can seriously research careers for hours every day. I feel a real sense of responsibility to use this opportunity to my full advantage. I saw a career counsellor last week, which was very helpful because it confirmed that I was looking in the right direction. Personality profiling always helps me understand what makes me tick. I am happiest when am I'm being creative, innovative, problem solving and do best behind the scenes. After understanding this, I finally bit the bullet and signed up for a Flash introduction class. This is a leap of faith because I can't find much for job postings but I'm sure there is a market for developing online learning programs. Combining the computer programming skills with my adult education background should be marketable. I love working on computers and being creative, so I'd like to learn a variety programs and round out my skills with web development and possibly some graphic design.

The last few months has been a real roller coaster. I have enjoyed the opportunity to be at home with my family and lower the stress level in our house but the uncertainty of the future really plagues me.

Last weekend we got the chance to escape reality for a few days with some camping in Radium. It was awesome!! We tried out our gear for the backcountry camping we want to do later this summer. We also got to do a little hiking and relaxing at some natural hot springs.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Jordan's questionnaire

From Jordan:

The rules are:
1. Fill it out
2. Change one question with one of your own
3. Add an additional question
4. Tag 3 other people to do the same

1. What are your current obsessions?
mtn biking, hiking, and finding the right career for me

2. Which item from your closet are you wearing most often?
capris - bring on spring!

3. Last thing you bought for yourself?
Lipgloss (same as Jordan!)

4. What’s for breakfast?
Kashi go-lean crunch cereal, fat free vanilla yogurt, and protein powder. I'm a creature of habit

5. Say something to the person who tagged you:
Everyone needs a wine patio triathlon friend like you!

6. What is one item you could not live without?
My laptop and internet access

7. Vacation spots you must visit before you die?
Oh SO many! Costa Rica, Australia, New Zealand, African safari, Rome, Grand Canyon...

8. What is your most immediate short term goal:
Run a great triathlon clinic and figure out what I want to be when I grow up

9. What are you reading right now?
Extreme Kids (a book about doing extreme sports with your kids) and The Gift of Fear.

10. What is the last movie you saw and enjoyed?
I love you, man. I wasn't expecting anything from this movie but it was actually really funny.

11. What’s your guilty pleasure?
wine, chocolate and cheese

12. What’s your favorite smell?

13. Whats something you look forward to?
Being out on the trails with my boys

14. What are your greatest achievements?
Buying our first house at 23, and having a great marriage at 16 years and counting.

15. What is something you would like to do, as outrageous as it may sound?
Backcountry camping

16. Whats one thing you can't go a day with out doing?

17. What do you have an addiction to?

18. Whats your favorite holiday?
Any time we're together doing something that makes us happy.

19. How many pairs of shoes (not just running) do you have??
Not sure

20. Tell us one random thing about you.
I am terrible for trying new foods. I'll say I don't like something even though I've never tried it.

21. Why did you start your blog?
Starting running changed my life. I wanted to document the journey and now I'm grateful it's here for me to read back on and I'm totally flattered that people actually read it.

22. What is your silliest/ most embarrassing triathlete rookie story?
I almost didn't start my first triathlon because mother nature made a very untimely appearance; when I had travelled to a race and couldn't find the right "protection" at that time of the morning. Luckily it was a pool swim and lifeguard saved my day. How's that for TMI?

23. If you could do anything in the world, what would it be?
Take a hot air balloon ride over an africa safari.

24. What is your best childhood memory?
Hanging out with my brothers

Tag! You're it..