Swimming, My History, YMCA Values

The 4 pillars or values of the YMCA: Respect, Responsibility, Honesty, Caring.

I’ve been staring at these values while swimming laps at YMCAs across the country since 1988. I started swimming in 1988 after graduating from high school and wanting to get in shape during the week to hike NH’s mountains on the weekends. I swam early mornings at the Portsmouth, NH YMCA pool for years. I remember the lifeguard and the “regulars” like it was yesterday; I’m so old!

Many years later, when I moved to Granby, Colorado I remember swimming and seeing the pillars, Respect, Responsibility, Honesty, Caring in front of me at the beginning of each lap while swimming at Snow Mountain Ranch YMCA. I look to my right, framed perfectly in the windows, the Rocky Mountains. It was great training swimming laps at 8,000 feet at Snow Mountain Ranch YMCA. I smile at the thought of those mountains.

Snow Mountain Ranch pool in Granby, CO.

When I lived in Tucson the YMCA pool was outside, and I don’t recall seeing the pillars posted anywhere. However, I do remember how wonderful the sun felt year-round on my body as I swam laps at their magnificent pool preparing for Ironman Texas and Wisconsin during the three years I lived there. 

Look at that view from the Northwest Tucson YMCA outdoor pool!

Now, I live in Concord, NH and as I kicked with fins I stared at the 4 pillars in front of me and it reminds me of all these places I’ve trained and all the truly wonderful places I’ve lived in. I’m blessed.

Concord NH YMCA pool

I haven’t swam in a few weeks and needed to get back into the pool since I need to 1) cross train for the ultras I’m running this year and 2) prepare for Ironman Mont Tremblant in 25 weeks.

Swimming just feels good. I’m starting out with 1,200 yards in 30 minutes doing all the strokes and using the kick board. I will gradually work in speed and endurance.

Training for ultra races and Ironman just make everything right in my world. Even with all the crap going on in the world, life is better when I can figure out 30 minutes in water. 

Happy Monday. Make it great today. It’s all a crap shoot. It’s all just a crap shoot.

Is Rock Climbing good cross training for runners

On Friday night I decided to find out if rock climbing is good cross training for ultra running. I have been lifting weights and doing pull ups for three months so I thought I would be strong. It was hard but fun!

I went to Vertical Dreams in Manchester for my first ever indoor rock climbing. It was so fun! I learned how to tie a rope and belay. Then started climbing with Tom.

Two days later, my forearms are a bit sore. Three months of weight training and pull ups helped, a little.

I think indoor rock climbing could make me stronger, and I could incorporate it into a regular plan, maybe. LOL

This week was a recovery week and after my dark day on Saturday, yes that is a thing, I’m full steam ahead to Ironman, 100 Miles and Ragged Mountain Stage Race.

I swam today. After running 10 indoor miles I swam. I’m so ready for Ironman Training.

What’s my Goal? Improve, Finish. Revel.
All of these things.

Life is hard, fun, brutal, sad, laughable, challenging. I want things to be easy and they never are. I’m up for the challenge. I want it all. I am Wonder Woman.

Trying all things

I love this quote from Charlotte Bronte. I had this quote on my refrigerator in almost all the houses I’ve lived in the last ten years. It reminds me that I need to keep trying, keep searching to find the best people, the best places, and to not give up or settle for second best in anything I do.

Last year was good but this year it going to be epic. 100 miles. 3-Day Stage Race. Ironman. 4,000 Footers.

Final 2020 Race Plan

I made the plunge – in 2020 I’m an ultra runner and triathlete. I never would’ve guessed that I’d go back to triathlon, but I do love the bike. I do love swimming and being in water. I guess I like to run (LOL), but mainly on trail, maybe.

Well, I guess I love it all. I love the planning, the training and execution.

Cheers to 2020 and mixing it up.

2020 Race Schedule

Road Running: Houston Marathon

Trail Running: Umstead 100, Ragged Mountain Stage Race 75 Miles, Manchester to Monadnock, Redemption at Jay Peak (3 loops this time, Kristen)

Triathlon: Redemption at Mont Tremblant (Note: must buy new tri bike)

Finish all the 4,000 footers in New England

Just a regular Monday rest day when you want to do everything, see everything and conquer the world from your sofa.