Posts Tagged ‘Pasadena Triathlon Club’

Ragnar Relay Race Report

A while ago, Gail (in Pasadena Tri Club) asked me if I wanted to participate as a runner in the Ragnar Relay. The Ragnar Relay is a 24+ hour event, 200.6 miles with a 12 person relay team. Each runner gets legs that they run ranging from 2 to 8 miles (3 sets). I told Gail, that it sounded like fun…but to put sleep deprivation and running together would be my worst nightmare! So I offered to drive…

Fast forward to Friday morning, we rented the two 15 passenger vans from Enterprise Thursday evening and the team decorated them with some AWESOME decals that were donated by a fellow club member who works with that kind of stuff. I had to leave early for choir practice and they would drive the vans to my house to leave them overnight. I suggested my street, only because it is SUPER safe and we needed room to park a bunch of cars overnight and my street is great for that. It would also be very convenient for me in the morning not to have to drive anywhere 😀 I came home after 9 Thursday night and saw the vans and they looked great! Here are the vans:

Back to Friday morning, everyone was meeting at my place at 7AM, I was driver of van 2 and while we didn’t have to start till 2PM…we still drove up with van 1 to see them off at the start. We finally got going around 7:30AM and headed up to Oxnard for the start. We got there with time to spare and pulled into the parking lot. The instant we drove in, we realized we could probably have a good shot at winning the best van contest, our vans were really THAT good! We went through our little safety training session and before we knew it we said bye to van 1. Here is everyone at the start:

Since we didn’t have to really be anywhere till 1PM, we went over to Denny’s and pigged out on some food. Once we were done there we hopped into the van and headed to our first exchange point. By the way, I will use the word “exchange” quite a lot…that is where one runner passes the baton/bracelet to the other runner. There were a total of 36 exchanges. Here I am, hard at work (trying not to kill everyone in my van) 10 & 2, my mom would be proud:

Around 2:30ish (not sure because I was napping) Shawn came through and passed the bracelet to our first runner. We now started our set and we followed each runner through their run then met them at the next exchange. The first set took us till about 8 or 9PM, we had made our way into Woodland Hills by then and we had about 3 hours before our next set. George met us at that stop, so I got to be with him for a little bit and that was really nice. This is where I took off the passenger side mirror… I was parallel parking and the street was really dark and there was this HUGE oak tree next to the curb. I parked a little too close and the tree matched up with the mirror and the tree won. The actual mirror plastic thingy stayed on, it was just the mirror part. We were eventually able to tape it back up so that I had a little visibility on that side of the van, but THANKFULLY we had full insurance  coverage on the vans. Phew! This is also when it was dark and everyone had to wear their reflective vests and lights so no one would hit them. Here is Neil and Marvin all lit up!

I am not really sure what Marvin is doing in that picture…I think he belonged in another van…. (Runagaydes? Marvin????) lol

While at that exchange they had a dinner for $10, so I got that. The team ended up eating at corner bakery…I just kind of hung around with George. We finally took off from there and headed down to Santa Monica where our next exchange would be.

We pulled up in a remote corner of the parking lot so that we could get some rest. I was 10PM and our runner would probably get there around 1AM. We set the alarms to 12:30AM and tried to sleep as best we could. Marvin had a sleeping bag and went for the homeless look:

Around 12:00AM a white truck parked RIGHT next to us and was bumping their music. Seeing that the driver was a little ghetto…we opted to just deal with it and not say anything. So our first nap was not that effective.

Around 1:30AM Shawn came through the Santa Monica exchange point and we would be going till about 4AM. Because these legs were a bit shorter, I had to get a little crazy with getting people into the van. Good thing though, at one of the exchanges a runner was waiting for their other runner because the van wasn’t there on time. Here I am around 3AM or so, videotaping the exchange. I am not really sure why I look so annoyed….oh yeah…I have been up almost 24 hours and had a short nap and it was cold….

Once we were done with our set we ended up somewhere near Compton…I just remember driving the streets trying to get back to the freeway and a little voice in the back of the van said… “I think we are in Compton…” That was really fun, considering that we were in a van decorated to the max in hippie decor! We quickly got on the 405 and were on our way down to another beach town. At this point, the places got blurry and Garmin was mostly leading the way.

When we got there, the group went to breakfast and I opted to sleep in the car since I had another set coming up and needed some rest (and since everyone got to sleep while I drove). Here are a few people from our van at the beginning of our final set:

Once we sent off Lisa, we headed over to a nearby hotel and got cleaned up. Marvin had this AMAZING idea of going to the bathroom only at hotels. It ended up being so much better than gas stations and we got to freshen up a bit too.

The final set went off without a hitch, I was pretty alert and we made sure to encourage our runners along the way. Throughout the whole trip, we also made sure to leave a mark:

Don’t worry….it’s removable paint…we think :-/

For whatever reason, I can’t find any finish line photos…but it looked a lot like the start line photo except on sand (in case you are curious).

Overall, this is a great race. We had a lot of fun and I would do it again. Next year it will fall around the wedding, so I don’t think it will happen for 2011…but 2012 might be a different story…and I might actually RUN it *cringe*

I shot a lot of video, and once I figure out how to get the video off of the camera, I will be sure to put something together.

Thanks to Gail for all the photos!


My Wednesday Evening

Oh, where to start….

I guess I will start when I got off from work yesterday. I had dropped off my bike on MONDAY at Incycle….MONDAY….for a new chain and a slight tune up. Nothing major, just get things working together again. I called in on TUESDAY to see if it might be ready and I was told that it was scheduled to be done WEDNESDAY. So all day yesterday I was waiting for my phone to ring and a voice on the other end to say “your bike it ready!”, but no go…so after work I went over to the shop and ask for my bike. I was all dressed in my cycling gear so they knew that I would be riding. Well, a person (I will not say who it is because I like said person and it is not their fault) started rushing around, found a red Allez and rushed it over to get worked on. So 3 days they have my bike and it just gathers dust…so I walk over and see the bike they are working on….red Allez…white saddle….gray bar tape…no areobars….uhhhh….not my bike…. So I went over to said person and ask how my bike is coming along, said person says “they are working on it” I say “uhm, they ain’t workin on my bike! That’s not my bike” Said person’s jaw drops to ground, I pick it up then said person gets my bike (it was hanging in their back room). Nothing had been done to it….nadda…zilch….zero….So I tell said person, just let me have it so that I can go on my ride tonight and I will bring it back tomorrow. So this has become quite an ordeal and I have to say that it is quite inconvenient…so thank you Incycle…for nothing :-/

So I get to the Rose Bowl and realize…I don’t have my phone…in my rush to get out the door of my office I left my poor little phone on my desk. So now I feel completely NAKED! Oh well, I think I can manage without it for 12 hours…So we get on our bikes and we head out for the laps. Last nights focus was more about the run and less about the bike. So I did one complete lap with the group, then couldn’t breath, and dropped off. I ended up doing 4 laps, 13 miles in 45 minutes. If I can do 12 miles in 45 minutes for the Iron Girl next weekend, I will be SOOOO HAPPY! I used the aerobars and I like them, I need to make a couple of slight adjustments to get used to them so on Sunday George and I are going to go to the river trail  just to do that, get me cozy on the bars! After my 4 laps I pulled into the parking lot and got my running shoes on. George and I weren’t planning on running that far (15 out, 15 back) but ended up doing and hour run because Allen caught up with us to show us the trails, which was so cool! All in all we ran about 5 miles, George and I were pretty pleased with ourselves because we normally don’t run very much. So the work out was really fun and I am glad we pushed ourselves.

Then this morning, I get in my car and realize I don’t have any gas. So I say to myself….well…I have enough to get me to work and then I can fill up out there. Except, I get to Pasadena and realize that my BANK CARD is in the pocket of my pants that I wore last night! DOH! Fortunately, a kind soul has loaned me $10 so now I can get gas, drive my bike over to Incycle, AGAIN, and get home. Thank you kind soul 🙂

Somewhere I left my head, not sure when or where but I would like it back. 

This Saturday I sadly will not be doing the PTC ride, priorities…I have to get my hair done…its been like 5 months! But, I WILL BE GETTING A SCOOTER! That’s right, a SCOOTER! Yesterday I went to the DMV and took my written test for a motorcycle license and I passed and got my permit! You need a motorcycle license to ride a scooter of 150cc or more…which I am getting. It was funny, because after I passed the test I went up to the last window and the lady was surprised I had passed. And I told her “well, I read the book”… and she said that people usually don’t pass and that it is a hard test, mmmm….ok….. Anyway, I am so excited and I am going to get bright red! Now, you may be asking…why a scooter? Because they are cool…and I am too scared to ride a motorcycle and its what they ride in Europe, ok? 

I am pretty sure this is the same scooter, but I will have detailed images of myself on the scooter once I get it 🙂

My Buddy

Remember those dolls? My Buddy and Kid Sister? I used to have a Kid Sister and I really liked her hair because I could braid it, put it in a ponytail or just leave it down…and when I would grab her by her hair she wouldn’t cry 🙂

Anyway! Last night was a GREAT workout! It was the weekly PTC brick and other than hardly being able to breath, it was good. We started out with a “warm up” lap (which is almost full throttle for me) and then we did a fast 2nd lap (which I barely hung on for) and 2/3 of the way through the 3rd lap…I was toast! So I broke off to do some hills while everyone else kept going. I ended up doing 5 laps in a little over an hour and did a total of 17 miles. I think I did well overall and really tried to push myself up the little hills. Once I was done on the bike I loaded it up on to the car and threw my running shoes on. George had just gotten there when I had to pee, so I went pee while he got his running shoes on. So I go in to the park potty (gross) and squat…I normally don’t squat because I really don’t like it. But I was in a hurry and didn’t have time to carefully line the cold metal toilet. So I get up and turn around to flush and my AAA plastic key that I carry (instead of my keys) drops into the toilet….with MY PEE!!!!!! “oh shit” (I really said that out loud) So I dug in for it and went straight to the sink to wash my hands and key card…but of course…no soap…meh…

So I leave and George is there waiting for me so then we start our run. Turns out, George and I make GREAT running buddies. We go at about the same pace and we push each other to not stop and walk. And guess what, we ran 3.7 miles without walking! That’s huge for us! I am not sure how long it took, but it was nice being out there with George and we got to catch up on our daily activities. There is something great about being able to do that with your significant other, it really is a bonding moment. 

We get back, we chat for a bit with some other PTCers and then we went to din din. I had a coupon for La Cabinita and we pigged out on some chicken and steak fajitas. Yum!

Overall, a great workout, I had fun and was pleased with my results. I think I will have to drag George out for more runs since we run so well together, he’s my buddy.

Now, I follow a few blogs and one of them is The Chic Runner, she is having a contest and if I post about it on my blog…I get an additional entry! The contest is for a $100 gift certificate to…now…2 things to note:

1. In this post I spoke about my new shoes…well…where did I get them from????!

2. I love shoes, I put them in plastic boxes with pictures so that they stay protected and organized. I think I might have about 50 pairs of shoes that are active in my life right now….

So check out her blog, and if you want to get an entry too, just read up on how to.

Otherwise, its Thursday! One more day till Friday! Then one more day till the SPA!


Saturday Ride

So I have been a lazy blogger…I know…oh well….

On Saturday George and I awoke bright and early for our weekly PTC ride. Actually, George goes weekly, I go monthly…maybe…if that….

The plan was to do the Resolution Ride that we did New Years weekend, and we sort of did…just with some variations. We left Sierra Madre right at 7:30AM, I was able to stay with the group for about 2.5 seconds…then we hit the first hill and I was TOAST! Everyone left me behind (even George…although he redeemed himself later). Marvin had route sheets (thanks Marvin!) so I had a general idea of where I was going. But then Marvin hung back a bit and I was able to stick with him and this other guy (who I can’t remember his name) until Descanso. Going up that first hill I started to get a little peeved when I was all by myself…I believe it went like this in my head “if I wanted to ride alone…I didn’t have to drive all the way out to Sierra freakin Madre!” It was a bit defeating, but the fact that Marvin hung back was a bit of a pick-me-up.

We get to Descanso Gardens and I see George again, from there on he never left my side…even through all the bitching I was doing up Linda Vista. Once we met up again, we decided to make a bit of our own ride but meeting at certain points with the group. This actually worked out very well and I am glad we did it this way. We also stopped by my house for a  pit stop because it just so happened that we rode our bikes right by my house! Before we left, we made a game plan that would include some vicious hills, but George knew I could do them. The first one was Glenoaks, which is a very short climb, but probably a 7% grade. The real highlight of this hill (as with most hills) is the SLAMMIN downhill! Once over that little hump, we headed up Chevy Chase, up to Linda Vista, to Lida and down to the Rose Bowl. The climb up Linda Vista SUCKED and SUCKED even more when the 12 year old kid on his mountain bike zoomed past me! I believe the mumbling up this hill was “I wish I had a flying carpet that could pick me up and drop me off at the top!” I really don’t know where I get these things…delusion….

We get to the top and my reward was a piece of PB&J and George had packed, AWESOME! I really think that this is the best thing to have on a ride, nothing like some good ‘ol carbs, sugar and protein to get the body perked up again! while we were up there a few PTCers showed up, Haroon, Linda, Nicole, Greg, Bryan and Udy. They take off and we follow, this was another SLAMMIN downhill, I got up to 38 or 39 mph and I made the little speed sign blink, awesome….

The route called for us to go into the bowl, but I really didn’t see why we needed to do that, so we stayed on Linda Vista and decided that we would do the Holly St. climb up to Orange Grove. This was another short and steep hill, 7% to 8% grade. We get up that hill and I can feel my legs fatiguing a little. Once on Orange Grove we started heading back to Sierra Madre. we get back to the cyclist corner I got a sandwich and it was goooooood. I call it the cyclist corner, because every weekend there are a TON of cyclists. The residents hate it, but they are stupid.

Overall it was a 30 mile ride and it was a lot of fun. It had its challenging moments, but nothing I couldn’t handle! Not sure if I am getting any better, I am still slow on the uphills, but I don’t stop which can be said for something I guess.

Then last night I did a 2.5 mile run, I am starting to venture a bit farther and I wrote down my splits for once, they were:

Mile 1- 10:49

Mile 2-12:53

Last .5 – 6:05

Mile 2 was especially long because I was going uphill the whole time and had to do some serious walking. I also headed up this other big hill near my house because I wanted to get home faster. I figured, I could take the somewhat long way around, or fight the shorter steeper hill. I went for the shorter steeper hill and it felt good, I ran most of the way and then just flew down the downhill and up to the house. I really like my new shoes, they have the level of cushion that I was looking for. Who knows, might buy another pair just to keep around since I like the old model and they will be in short supply soon.

Once again, took pictures, but camera cord is MIA and haven’t really taken the time to search for it.

Round and round and round we go

Where we stop? 

At the cars to throw on our sneakers and go for a run! Well, everyone except for me and George…and Marvin…and Rich…and a few other anti runners…

We had our weekly brick last night, once again…I HAD A BLAST! Here is why I like it (yes…I am going into a list…I like lists)

#1 I hang on with the group for as long as I can, when I start wheezing, I pull out and do my own ride.

#2 I get to hang out with everyone and talk to them. On Saturday rides this doesn’t happen because they lose me in the first few blocks.

#3 I get to spend time with my better half

#4 I like riding in a peleton…it is sooooo cool!

#5 Allen is a good ride leader.

I also was able to hold on for 2.25 laps! Last week I could only hold on for 1.5, so that is a good improvement. I also think they didn’t go out as hard this week, so that could have been in my advantage as well. I think these brick rides are just great, I can’t rave about them enough. It is just so nice that a slow rider like me can have fun with the fast guys for a few laps while they “warm up” and I am wheezing behind them! 

Next week I will not be able to do the ride, I have to go up north for work and won’t be back in time. Oh well 😦 but the week after that I should be good.

This Saturday I am doing this thing at the Americana at Brand with Lulu Lemon. I think it is scavenger hunt and they have prizes for the top 3 winners as well as raffle prizes. I always like free stuff, and it seemed like it would be a good workout, so I signed up! I plan to ride my bike down there in the morning as to make my carbon footprint a little smaller. It should be fun, top prize is Lulu Lemon gear equal to $650…can’t beat that! There stuff is SUPER expensive and they never have sales…

So it should be a busy weekend, between that and the Pasadena Marathon Bike Tour its filling up fast! At some point I will need to get some serious vegging in.

Here is a video of the group, as you can see….there is a lot!

Podium Dreams

So tomorrow is the big day, my first triathlon of the season! I am mostly looking foward to it because of all the Pasadena Tri folks that will be there. I know it will be a lot of fun and there will be people there cheering me on, including George! He is volunteering and has been assigned to the transition area and he is directing people to the pool for the swim portion. I convinced (bribed) my parents to come to this one. Since it is so close they have no excuse. They are hoping they will get to see me more this time. For the Turkey Tri they really only saw me on the run. They were sort of bummed about that, but they came late and I had no time to tell them where everything was, so its all their fault. But since this is a fairly small event, I think they will be ok. 

There is a little part of me that hopes I podium on this, but all the planets will have to align for that to happen. Essentially, I am signed up for the Athena division and I basically need everyone in that division to totally suck or make a face plant on the run! I think I can finish it in 1:20, but that is a bit of wishful thinking…. Through my training, I have been able to do the run in 35 minutes, do the bike in 35 minutes and the 150 meter swim should take me 6 minutes at the most! I say 6 minutes because some of the fastest guys in PTC  got in at 5 minutes…but that might include transition.

Last night I went to the chiropractor and had him do some ultrasound on my achilles. I am hoping that helps with any inflammation that is in there and I am going to stretch a lot, including today. Here is hoping that doesn’t flare up tomorrow, or my podium finish dreams will vanish 😦

Wish me luck tomorrow, I will post my full race report probably later in the day after I nap!

Busy Weekend & Pasadena Triathlon Basics

I have been really tired lately and am going to sleep in tomorrow! That’s right! I said it! But then I have to take the new kitten into the vet for shots and to schedule her spay surgery. So I have to drag my ass out of the house at some point….

Then, later in the evening…we are doing the super fun event that I am still NOT REVEALING! But it involves a celebrity, a subway & a free t-shirt! Trust me, I should have plenty of pictures to share tomorrow!

Then on Sunday we have the Pasadena Triathlon Club General Meeting. If you are in the area and are interested in finding out about the tri club, you can go to the PTC website and there is a box with the information in it below the pictures. 

Last night I met up with a fellow PTC member, Verna, and we did a 4 mile run through the trails near the Rose Bowl. Funny thing is I never knew these trails were there and they are neat. I had a hard time running in some of the sections because of the amount of rocks on the ground, but I was able to get a good run in! After the run we went the the PTC info meeting at the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center to help out. There ended up being almost 70 people at the meeting, pretty much all doing the Pasadena Triathlon next Saturday and it will be their first triathlon ever. It was funny being at the first part of the meeting (I had to leave early) and seeing Craig, the info session organizer, talk about the different parts of the triathlon. The looks on their faces was priceless when he started talking about Yankx (cool shoe laces that you never have to tie), it was just going right over their heads….poor things…But it shot me back to when I first signed up with TNT, my biggest question was…WHAT DO YOU WEAR????? Now I have enough clothes to wear for tri’s that I could start a store… I am not sure if anyone doing the triathlon will make it to my website…but if you do here is a list of essentials for the Pasadena Triathlon (being specific here):

1. Running shoes

2. Socks

3. Swimsuit

4. Shorts

5. Bike

6. Helmet

7. Goggles

Here is what I suggest you do in regards to what you wear (especially if you do not have triathlon specific attire)


Swim trunks

– “Jammer” type shorts, which are like really tight boxer briefs with a little bit of length

– Swim shorts like you dad used to wear int he 80s 


– T-shirt or sports shirt (just cover up!)


Bathing Suit

Running shorts

T-shirt or running shirt

As for the order… Wear the swimming attire under everything! Women…if you are big busted wear a sports bra under your swimsuit for when you are running…it will get wet when you jump in the water but it will be ok and worth it. If I were a guy…I would wear my swim shorts as my running shorts, that way you just take off your shirt and shoes and get in the water.

And here are a couple points for etiquette:

1. If you pass someone on your bike, pass on the left and yell “on your left!” This is a way to tell someone you are there…

2. In the transition area, only take up a little square of space, this is not your bedroom… Folding a towel twice should be a good size….

3. No drafting! You will get kicked out! Drafting is when you ride right behind someone, always keep 2 bike spaces in front of you and the other rider.

4. Be nice to the volunteers, say hi and thank you when you can.

5. Be on time, nothing worse than a late triathlete.

I hope this helps for the people doing the Pasadena Triathlon, or any other reverse tri…clothing choices for regular triathlons are a bit different so ingore this if you are not doing a reverse tri…

If you have any burning questions, leave a comment or e-mail me at