Monday, May 30, 2011

7 Hills of Kirkland

Well they don't call it the 7 Hills of Kirkland because it is easy. This year I had the opportunity to do this ride. I must admit, I was a little intimidated about the ride since I had not done a lot of hill riding yet. The weather around here has not been so great, on 4 of my rides it rained. Of course, a little rain is no excuse but I dislike not having full brake capability in this somewhat hilly area I live in.

We started off in downtown Kirkland. After registering, I proceeded to the start where the first "Dan Henry" was marked on the road. Dan Henrys are the road markers that we follow during the ride. They are color circles that have arrows pointing you to where you are supposed to go. At the start line, I was lucky enough to see a group of 3 ladies. I introduced myself and asked them if I could join them. They were nice enough to let me. The first hill we hit was Market Hill and then second was Juanita Hill. These hills were not very hard, maybe it was because I had fresh legs though. However the next two hills #3 Seminary Hill and #4 Norway Hill were pretty tough. Long and windy they were. #5 was a nice hill climb on Kingsgate hill that was steady but not too bad. After our food break, we hit the infamous Windery Hill, holy smokes, I see what everyone was talking about, I had to go up on my saddle for that one 3 times. Luckily, this hill was staggered, so there were sections that were about 200 yards where you could recovery before hitting the next steep section. After that hill my left knee started to hurt a bit on the downstroke. The last hill was Rose Hill and I took that one slow and steady as my knee was starting to bother me more.

Right now, my knee feels alright. My hamstrings however are sore. The foam roller has been helping. I better rest up this week to recover.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


Humble pie it's good for you...

A fellow friend and I were chatting one day about designer handbags. I told her I don't wear mine out anymore because I didn't want to appear "high maintenance." She said, that I should feel confident about the fact that I like nice high quality things. I do like nice things, but I value "different" nice things now, like snowboards, bikes and cars. So this got me thinking about what confidence really means. I started to think about where I stand with respect to confidence in myself.

God knows, when it comes to triathlon, I have eaten a lot of humble pie. I have pretty much come in the bottom quarter of several races. When I did the swim across lake Washington I came in like 3 last out of the water - but I was still really proud of myself for finishing it actually. And during those tris where I came in near the end when most people were finished, I still felt happy. Happy to just cross the finish line, maybe some day I will have a higher bar, but for now I am content with being able to do the sport and have fun. This leads back to my thoughts on confidence. I have the confidence to try my best no matter what the outcome. I have to confidence to cross the finish line in almost last place and be proud of how far I have come and all the work I have done to reach that far. These are my thoughts on confidence.