Saturday, February 28, 2009

Ironman....take 2

I have started the plan of the Ironman. (and no I did not try to rhyme that) Arizona will be here before I know it (november 22) so right now I am in the base building phase...I was able to get in close to 10,000 meters in the pool again this week and will swim tomorrow which will push me at 12,000 meters. My 100 is getting close to 1:45 which is pretty darn exciting since a year ago to hold a 2:20 was challenging! It is a lot of fun to see the seconds roll down in swimming.

With the new offices at the LAF, it has been a much more enjoyable commute as nice showers do make all the difference! And with it staying lighter out in the evening, twice this past week I was able to get in a 30 mile ride after work. And yes, the love for my bike is coming back! (plus, I am getting a fun new road bike...thanks sam!! and so new bike=new reason to ride) Running has not been comfortable lately as I am having some challenges with that, so as I have learned, rest is the only good thing for that. So no half marathons on the horizon for March and no Boston Marathon...I deferred to next year.

Spring in TX means lot's of fun charity rides in week the KAB and I will do Pedal Thru the Pines, a 65 miler that is one of my favorites. The following weekend is a ride up North, 80 miler. April will be an Olympic Triathlon, the Lonestar. Then i have some work travel so training will have to be creative to keep that strong base. May will be Shiner Gasp 100 miler and Armadillo 100 miler! (back to back weekends which is perfect for RAGBRAI training) Finish out May with Memphis in May Triathlon and Cap Tex Tri where I will do a relay with the KAB.

All in all....a busy busy spring!! But I am starting to get really excited about what could happen with this Ironman!!

I have also decided to raise money while doing this Ironman, I am still trying to decide who that will be stay tuned for that!


nothing major to share here except the Starbuck's Barista has come up with yet another rendition of my name...COLLEEN. Don't know where they got the "i". I think it's one of my favorite things about going to Starbucks is seeing how the hippy chicks will spell my name.

Friday, February 27, 2009

he DIDN'T Run a Marathon... yes, I watch the BIGGEST LOSER and I love seeing the transformation however in the last few seasons it has not been so honest AND what is up with all the product endorsement? I mean, could we stage products into the show that way? Let's look at this weeks show....After being eliminated at the end of Wednesday’s episode, Dane appeared in the where-are-they-now segment, and talked about running a marathon, which he says “was one of the most amazing experiences of my life to run side by side with my wife for an entire marathon.”

But he didn’t actually run the entire 26.2 miles. an actual marathon runner’s blog post that says Dane “and his wife were several miles behind me throughout the entire race, but around mile 17 they got picked up by a van and driven to the end of the course, where they filmed the grand ‘crossing the finish line’ finale with all the family cheering. I’m hoping that they televise it as a half marathon, since I know he ran at least that far, which is truly a great accomplishment.” Insert Colleen's comments, " Yes, it is a great accomplishment BUT Dane said he did the ENTIRE MARATHON himself...and he didn't!!!"

Dane’s wife Carli actually commented on that blog post and admitted they didn’t run the whole way; she wrote, “unfortunatly [sic] this marathon has been a little exaggerated. In this industry you are always on a time frame and sometimes it is out of your control. We had stopped along the way to film at a water station and to make up for lost time our producers drove us ONLY 3 miles up the road. I am sorry if this has offended you in any way, but we are still incredibly happy about the 23 miles we ran. (Colleen: which is not a marathon) We were not listed as completing the marathon. Dane is an honest LDS Dad and I hope that they do say he completed this marathon because had time allowed he would have!” (Colleen: had time allowed? it didn' we won't say that he ran the marathon...cause he didn't)

Not having enough time to complete it is utter bullshit, because three miles is, assuming a slow pace, 45 minutes, maybe an hour. As Dane and his wife cross the finish line in the clip, the clock says 3:53. (it took me 4:04 to do my first marathon), but it’s not like race organizers shut down the race at 4:45 or even five hours. The blogger quoted above says she finished the race at 6:14:59, meaning Dane would have had 2.5 more hours to run those alleged three miles.

If we are going to do a REALITY show...let's state the reality of the situation. Has Dane made huge strides in weight loss and a better life..yes! And for this he should be spotlighted...but don't portray him as running a 3:53 marathon when so many of us work our butts off to do that ourselves? Don't up the Hero anty with him? ugh....I might not be able to watch the show now...

On other Reality news...which is good...I am going to keep throwing out that I want on the Amazing Race reality show. My very good friend Kenny and I are going to apply. Now I see this....Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan will leave his mat behind as he bikes across the United States starting March 28 in L.A. and concluding May 9 in New York.

“I fly over 400,000 miles a year and I figured it was time to stretch my legs. I love to ride so I thought I’d see what this great country looks like up close instead of taking a bird’s eye view at 30,000 feet. In this economic climate, bike riding makes a lot of sense — it’s good for your waistline and easy on your wallet,” Phil said in the announcement.

How can I connect with him during this ride? Just casually show up....ride a few miles with him and get on that damn RACE!!!

Any ideas friends!!!???

Thursday, February 26, 2009


Lance Armstrong Foundation Responds to President Barack Obama's Address to the Joint Session of Congress
AUSTIN, Texas – February 25, 2009 – Today, the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) released the following statement from LAF President and CEO Doug Ulman, a three time cancer survivor, regarding President Barack Obama's address to last night's joint session of Congress:

"Last night, President Obama committed to renewing the war on cancer, marking a major milestone in America's epic battle with this disease. Like most Americans, he has experienced the burden of cancer himself and he has listened to America's call for action."

"We applaud his commitment to make cancer a national priority and are encouraged by his focus on research, preventative care and healthcare system reform. In recent years, cancer funding has remained static or declined, so we are hopeful that Congress and the new administration will work to reverse this trend."

"As we embark on the LIVESTRONG Global Cancer Campaign on behalf of the 28 million cancer survivors worldwide, we are pleased to see America making progress against this disease. The LAF stands ready to work with the new administration and Congress to turn this commitment into real policy change that improves the lives of people affected by cancer."

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I like....

A friend sent me this quote today and I like it...

"Knowing great things about God will help make us ready not to collapse under cataclysmic conflict and personal catastrophe." John Piper

All I can hang on to is that God is in control, I am not, and that's good.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Brand NEW Offices for the Lance Armstrong Foundation!!!

Today, Monday, February 23rd, was our official first day in the Lance Armstrong Foundation Headquarters! We had a group meeting at 10 and a neighborhood eatery stopped by with pastries, coffee, smoothies, breakfast tacos...a feast if I might say for the staff to welcome us to the neighborhood! I will post more pictures later this week but the one above is in front and it's the staff with Lance just fresh off the Tour of Cali.

This week we will all be busy moving into our new spaces, but it is great to be HOME!! My bike commute is only 1 mile longer than the old I only bike 4.5 miles to and from work on really safe biker friendly roads! And when it rains, the bus system takes me right there! So I will continue to ride my bike and live the commuter life until I can't take it anymore....with the new office and the showers provided, I am sure i can stick this out longer!

ok...that's all with the building, below is a brief life update!

(On a side note...I had a great 3 day weekend with biking 60 on Friday, swimming and running on Saturday and then biking again on Sunday. Top off Sunday night with an Oscars gathering at Spotts! Loved it!)

Keep Praying for my dear friend Desiree as she enters the third week of her protocol. Below is one of my favorite pics of her and I. It was after she completed Wildflower Triathlon and she wanted to swim in the ocean. The waves were HUGE that day and after we tried to venture out we then saw signs that said, "not safe for swimming" We laughed about that one!

Have a great week....

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Recover...that's what I did..for a few days anyway

This week was about recovering and there is no better way to do that than in the POOL!! And I am still in love with swimming!! I have gotten to the pool 3 times this week and will return again on Saturday morning making that almost 12000m that I have swam this week...the most ever. As well, my 100s have rocked it this week as I pulled a 1:46 for a few of my 100s. I can feel myself getting stronger and I know my Ironman swim in AZ is going to rock if I just stay on this course.

I have been enjoying evening spin sessions with Lance, Levi and close cycling buddies. Well, not really but I will tell you that getting on the bike trainer and turning on the Tour of California via the DVR...make the 90 minutes of ez spin go by fast!! I just visualize them carrying me to the Sprint Finish....and of course I over take Cavendish in the end!

I only went running once, an easy 3 mile run after a T3 core class. That's all I will say about that. My legs weren't ready for running quite yet as my hamstrings still seem to have their own zipcode.

Tomorrow I have off as the LAF is moving to our new beautiful headquarters here in Austin,TX!! I can't wait to go into work on Monday morning and be in our new space on the East side! (The office is still only a 4.5 mile bike commute for me, so I will continue my quest to go as long as I can without a car payment!) In having off tomorrow, my riding buddy KAB and I are going to take off and do 100 miles on the bike. Just because. No real reason. Just because we can and because we have the day WHY NOT!!??? Stay tuned for what I am sure will be a funny post. The most I have ridden in the last few months is um, well...40 miles? I think? so 100 should be exciting....and show me just where I am NOT for my Ironman Training. gulp.

Observations in a Hospital waiting room

I am in Houston as I write this. I came with my friend Desiree or Taco as we like to call her for some follow up tests and an infusion at MD Anderson. This is my friend who is fighting cancer again. I have been in and around this kind of situation more than I would want to (and Desiree..I will drive you down ANY DAY you need me to) Today I had some time to observe. I got caught up on some work and opened a book I had been wanting to read for some time and I had several thoughts in my head racing. I sat down and wrote an email to my good friend Brian. He currently works with Team Fight for the Ulman Fund in Maryland and his team is getting ready for a triathlon in May. Here is basically what I wrote:

I am sitting in Houston, TX at MD Anderson with my dear friend Desiree who has relapsed a second time with lymphoma. The first time she fought was two years ago when I met her beautiful face. We were fast friends as we had so much in common. We both try to get the same things out of life and we live for adventure! She has been a close friend, a fellow triathlete and my running buddy. Desiree and I signed up for Ironman AZ this November to celebrate her victory over cancer and her 40th birthday (however she doesn't look a day over 30!!)….she will not be able to race due to the relapse. As well, she has 3 beautiful children. Ages 6,8 and 10…… I am sitting in the waiting room as she goes in to receive a 4 hour infusion. Even though MD Anderson does a lot of things right…being in a hospital for JUST cancer patients will never feel ok to me. It makes it real, it makes me realize just how important it is to eradicate this horrible disease.

The injustice that cancer serves is not fair. And I am angry. I have observed since 9 AM and watched the walks of all those facing treatment, good news, bad news, new protocol…. There is this blank look on people's faces that quite frankly reads nothing because in the world of cancer fighting, you have to be ready for anything and everything. I learned a few things over again...Cancer does not discriminate. Where I sit right now there are young and old, black, white & asian, upper class and lower class. Cancer doesn’t care that the economy is tanking, that fashion week is about to happen, or that we are trying to figure out a new health care system. It doesn't care who is going to win at the Oscars. Cancer doesn’t care if you have 3 children or hopes of having children one day. As active as it is…it has no REAL face. It carries the face of way too many people. There is no sense in who or why it chooses and that makes me angry. Nobody deserves this. I found out today that MD Anderson has to add 600 more beds, my stomach dropped. I mean…they ONLY serve cancer patients, have an entire FLOOR for lymphoma and they need 600 more beds??? Apparently there is a waiting is that so? Cancer doesn't wait..why should patients?

I have been around cancer up close and personal for about 6 years now. Some have I get used to it? No. I don't...and I don't want to...ever.

Desiree...if you read this...I love you, I am proud to call you friend, I will take the trip to MD Anderson whenever you need to go and I will stand in the gap for you when you feel like you can't anymore. You are loved...not just by me...but by so many.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Winter Run Training- Completed.

Yesterday, February 15th officially was the end of 4 months of Winter Run training for Colleen. My goal back in September was starting with the San Antonio Rock 'n' Roll Half, I would complete one half marathon per month ending with the Austin marathon in February. Here are the results:

(NOVEMBER)San Antonio Half: 1:51:40
(DECEMBER)OUC Half: 1:51:57
(JANUARY)Disney Half: 1:51:50
(FEBRUARY) Austin Half: 1:56:01

It as been a goal of mine to get close to my PR of 1:45...and that goal is still on my list. However, I wonder if that will ever come my way? Will I ever get faster on the run? The first three halves were done on flat courses and so I was happy that at least they were consistent....however, I REALLY wanted Austin to be close to those other times since it was a hillier course and well...just because I always have to be hard on myself.

Over the winter I stayed true to swimming at least twice a week and usually would go 3 times. (8 to 9 thousand meters per week) As well, signing up for these 4 half marathons means I will enter Ironman training with at least 13.1 miles in my base training. Basically I trained for San Antonio and my schedule would go as 13.1 at race, rest for one week with a few 3 mile runs, then 10 mile run the following weekend, 6-7 miles the weekend weekend...race time again. A 10 mile run started feeling "normal" to me and I was enjoyin the 90 minutes of running. I certanly know I am in a better place than when I started for Couer d'Alene last year at this time, especially in regards to running and swimming but I still feel like I could/can do more.

Why do I do this to myself??

Friday, February 6, 2009

my friend....update

I won't give names because it's not fair to someone's health to do that on a blog but I believe prayer still works regardless of names. The cancer is indeed back in my dear friends body, and it's back with more this time.

stage iv --which means in bone marrow and they are now going to test whether it is in the central nervous system. It is as serious as it gets. Less than 2% of recurrence cases is in the bones. The prognosis is set at 50%.

Chemo will be rough. Instead of one day outpatient my friend will be admitted for 4-5days each session. My friend will be required to return to Houston for monitoring during off weeks.

Three cycles every 21 days. This is before the bone marrow transplant, which is looking like it might be the more complicated one with donor marrow which increases risk of rejection or complications and is more compromising to my friend's long term health. Still don't know whether this will happen but the oncologist says that is is more likely than not.

Here is how we can pray:

Please pray that my friend will stay strong and can be humble during this process.
Please pray that my friend can have a stem cell transplant rather than a donor transplant.

Please pray that my friend's sister is a match. She is the best chance of a donor.

My friend will be gone a lot. Please pray that my friend's babies stay strong even though they are going to be scared, lonely and worried.

Please pray for my friend's spouse. This is going to be unbelievably difficult for them in maintaining their lives while away from one another.

Please pray for my friends parents who are devestated and are radically changing their lives to be here for my friends family.


Thursday, February 5, 2009

34 things for 34 years

It's one week since I turned 34 and I had a GREAT birthday. I got to work and my friends Dani and Emily had sent me beautiful tulips, then i had a birthday lunch with Emy, Spotts and Frasco. Got back and roses from Sam. There were other surprises from friends later but i won't bore you all...(fuller, thanks for a great birthday!! You are a dear friend!) As people have asked over the last week questions about turning 34 and where I am in life I once again brought back to a place of seeing just how blessed I am in life. So i thought...34 things for 34 years might be appropriate! Most of these I picked from my journal from the last year as it was quotes and the most random thoughts ever. Please publish it when i die. (these are in no particular order..just lessons I learned from music, sports, life, friends, good and bad choices)

1. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (I know that is a long one...but it's a bible verse that is relevant whether you believe in God or not)

2. I'm doing what I do, and I'll always do what I do because that's what I do.

3. My coming of faith did not start with a leap but rather a series of staggers from what seemed like one safe place to another. Like lily pads, round and green, these places summoned and then held me up while I grew. Each prepared me for the next leaf on which I would land, and in this way I moved across the swamp of doubt and fear.

4. The movie High Fidelity always makes me feel better.

5. Singing really loud to old school Indigo Girls is something I don't ever want to grow out of.

6. Loving someone is truly a choice. A choice that is worth making whether it be heartache or true love in the end...I will always choose love.

7. there are certain barriers that will always make us stronger.

8. When things are tough and life seems unbearable, sign up and volunteer for a cause that is giving to those less fortunate than you. It will always bring you back.

9. Be the change you want to see in this world.

10. I thank God every day for Radiohead, Jeff Buckley, Brandi Carlile and Annie Lennox. Their lyric and meter makes me smile.

11. Always give yourself multiple chances to attack the problem.

12. Eat more vegetables. just because.

13. make shopping lists, if you don' always come back with way more than you need and nothing to make a complete meal.

14. what you do with your life matters.

15. cancer sucks.

16. When I went from entertainment to non-profit work, I am always brought back to music. Always.

17. i really love triathlons...they push me and it is a great escape for me.

18. contentment is being satisfied with WHAT I HAVE.

19. surest form of failure is seeing out the approval of everyone.

20. saying Thank you is really important.

21. Forgiveness is hard, but we must do it.

22. God will speak to you through interruptions.

23. Faith is a lump in the throat and faith isn't cheap.

24. Take a risk...I have found that the risks usually end up being those things in life you have always wanted to do...for job at the LAF!!

25. Practice does make perfect...(especially in swimming)

26. the truth does set us free!

27. Oreos and Chocolate milk really do turn a bad day...good.

28. Happiness in relationships is each partner's ability to adjust to things beyond his or her control.

29. And love is not the easy thing
The only baggage that you can bring
Not the easy thing
The only baggage you can bring
Is all that you can't leave behind (God Bless U2)

30. Decide to grow, not get my way. it doesn't have to go my way for me to be a happy well-adjusted person.

31. no one can take away your power to choose- and that includes your attitude.

32. the tongue has the power of life and death. (that's actually a bible verse in Proverbs...but once again...whether you believe in God or not, applicable to life)

33. I have lived a very full and rich life and I am young...don't stop now..keep moving in that direction. Leap and the net WILL appear!!!

34. when all else fails, put the iPod on, hit shuffle and walk....walk until you can't remember why you started this process.

That's it friends....the list for 2009!! I love it that my birthday is at the end of January, just after all the craziness of what I will resolve to not do this year!

Take a deep breathe. Tell someone you love them every day. Hug someone even if they don't want you to. Laugh a lot. And challenge yourself beyond what you think is possible for you.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Sharing is Caring......or is it?

Let's look at what the dictionary, good old Webster, says about Sharing, shall we?

To use or enjoy something jointly or in turns
to receive, use, experience, etc. in common with another or others
divide something equally

In riding my bike to work today I thought maybe, just maybe I had gotten the word Share wrong in my vocabulary...but once again, good old google clears it up for me.

And then I thought of the old bible verse: It is more blessed to give than to receive.

huh? not so much for me this morning on the way to work mr. buddy in the red pick up truck. What I received from you being that you tailed right behind my bike and honked....and folks I could have touched his car at one point....and then proceeded to drive so close to my left side when you passed (still honking and yelling GET ON THE SIDEWALK). The pass knocked me off my bike with your lovely side-view mirror. (I was on Barton Springs Road where there is a BIKE LANE!!!!) Well, that kind of receiving is what I could seriously do without. Here is where I thank James, the gentleman who stopped when I fell and helped me get up and was my witness and had the license plate number of said pick up truck.

Here is where sharing comes full circle. I proceeded to call the police, and they showed up about 10 minutes later, James and I SHARED the license plate number, make and model of the car and told Officer Carey what happened.

He then called in the number and took off in the direction of the red pick up truck.

I guess sharing is caring afterall.

(it's my means of transportation right now folks, unless you want to purchase me a car....I will follow the rules if you will..SHARE THE ROAD!!!!!!!!)