Double Workout Day

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@postaday 368; #postaday2011. I know we’re spoiled living here in Hawaii. Our blood thins in the tropics, and when the temperature dips to 73 degrees, I’m reaching for my iPhone because I want to know how cold it is! Lately, … Continue reading

So who rests on Sunday?


@postaday 302; #postaday2011.

I am exhausted! I know I don’t have to get out of bed at 5:45 a.m. on the weekends and ride my bicycle, but I like to. Today I did about 32.5 miles, including Kamiloiki and Makapu’u hills before heading to town and Diamond Head. After yesterday’s easy ride at just 22 miles or so, I knew I was slacking off, so I decided to do the hills today.

Breakfast: A stupid white donut.

Fueled by a little coffee and a stupid white cake donut, I really felt the strain of climbing Kamiloiki. Honest to goodness, I felt like I was having a hot flash while doing the climb, which means I felt like I was going to black out and fall. But I didn’t. I never have. Hot flashes, what the hellas? I was getting them quite frequently earlier this year, then they stopped. My body doesn’t know if it wants to be a teenager or what. It’s as though hormones are the great gag gifts of life.

Here are today’s stats from my ride. Average moving pace 16.3 miles, and given I climbed some big hills (big for me), that’s a pretty good pace for me.

RANT ALERT: On the way back from Diamond Head, this guy driving tourists in a white van came very close to me on the shoulder. It set me off. So, yes, there I was across the street from the Aina Haina Shopping Center saluting that van. I caught up with it at the light by Grace Bible Church and I yelled, “ARE YOU TRYING TO KILL ME?” I mean really, SCARING people on their bicycles is not a sport. And if you get off doing that, then you better reconsider your thrill thresholds. Honestly, do not think that I am going to let you get away with it. The fact that this driver, who would not turn his head to look at me, had every seat full of bewildered Asian tourists, was all the more reason I was going to really give it to him. Auto accidents are INCONVENIENT, but charitable driving gets everyone everywhere they want to be.

Awesome breakfast.

Oh, so why am I tired? Because after the ride, I made an awesome breakfast, and then I assembled the stew. We used the grill so the kitchen wouldn’t get even hotter on this hot, hot October day. It’s on the grill for another three hours. Nap time!

Spinning through the weekend


@postaday 228; #postaday2011.

I got in the pool at The Oahu Club last night for the first time in a week, and the new ear plugs and I were getting to know each other. It’s a good idea to work in the new gadgets before a big event. So I did spend a lot of time fussing with my plugs, swim cap and goggles. I dreaded going so much that my stomach started hurting while I was driving we Benderettes to the pool. But I reminded myself that I always feel great after a swim. And of course I did.

My body just loved being in the water. My arms and torso stretched easily as I swam and my lungs were at peace with my pace, and because we were doing a distance session, I didn’t have to go too fast too often. It felt good and I’m pretty sure I did more than 2,000 meters. After we were through, Coach Joe put a few videos up for us to watch. One was for the Waikiki Rough Water Swim from 2006; and the other was about a swimmer from  Equatorial Guinea, Eric Moussambani Malonga, and his performance in the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. After watching those videos, we all felt that anything was possible as the Waikiki Rough Water Swim, the Duke’s Waikiki Mile Ocean Swim, the Na Wahine Festival, and the Honolulu Century Ride nears. You always think you can’t, but then you realize you really can.

Today I did a light ride because I had to take Kid1 into Manoa this morning for her astronomy project. This is turning out to be pretty cool. She’s working on her submission for the state science fair, and she’s also assisting a graduate student with his research, and it just might result in her being an author of a paper submitted to a science journal. So of course we take her into Manoa when she needs to go.

Then I took Kid2 to Macy’s at Ala Moana Center. Armed with my Macy’s discount cards, we found her some sweet things to wear. She’d rather wear beefy T-shirts and denim bottoms, but there are times when she has to push herself into the flouncy skirts and ruffly shirts. We found things that seemed to make her happy. My search for the perfect white shirt continues. I had one on but it was $74 and I just couldn’t. I mean, come on! GULP! I always say it’s the thrill of the hunt! Honestly, it’s in a man’s closet somewhere. I just want something soft, long sleeve, white, fitted, and doesn’t gap at my boobs. Is that too much to ask?

Keeping it real


Steam vents from Kilauea Caldeira behind Charlotte, on her own 4th grade trip.

@postaday 134; #postaday2011.

Hi everybody who reads my blog. That’s you, you and, YOU?! Really? You read my blog, too? Wow! Gratitude, love and something to chew on. By this time of the day, I consider it unlikely anyone who cares to read what I’ve written has given up on me and moved on. I know. Life doesn’t wait, so if you’re sitting on your ass waiting for me, whoa, how sad is that? LOL.

Charlotte, Ariana and her mom, Stacy, and Sophie last night when the kids came back from the Big Island.

What’s the point of the title, Keeping it real? Just now Charlotte flipped that out at me. I was fascinated by her 9-year-old coolness. Yesterday she came back from the Big Island, a little wiser. She just had a spat with her sister. So this blog entry is keeping it real. This was life today. And I’m sitting right now, in the chair of uselessness, knowing the laundry needs my attention and my children will speed dial CPS if I don’t get the chicken soup I promised roiling on the stove.

Zooming by in my Grateful Dead jersey and a black sleeve on one arm and a white sleeve on the other. That's how I roll, LOL. Photo by John.

First off, I had a great ride according to my Garmin stats. Less than two hours to do about 32 miles. I love pushing myself. When the alarm went off at 545 this morning, I was really tired and I did not want to get up. But nothing feels as good as the end of a bicycle ride, or the end of a workout at @24-Hour Fitness Hawaii Kai, or whatever your fitness demon might be. For John, it’s running, or at the gym, he shackles himself to the stairclimber for 65 minutes. Ugh. I would go INSANE.

Yesterday I signed John and myself up for the 30th annual Honolulu Century Ride. Yes, against all the noise I made about it at the conclusion of the last ride. I did have flashbacks last night about going around Mokapu by the Marine Corps base, and going up Kahekili Highway, and of the rain we encountered out in Kaaawa, but then I realized that riding a century was a lot like childbirth. You tend to forget how much it hurts, and sign on for more.

I’m also signing up for the Na Wahine Swim and Spin, during the festival that is Sept. 11, 2011. Saturday. 9-11-11. Forboding. I have never raced in rough water, but I have swam competitively. I can probably do alright in the 12-mile bicycle ride. So we shall see. The Achille’s tendon injury I had last year makes me too chickenshit to try and ever run competitively again. Such is life.

Today was sign-up day for the City & County of Honolulu Summer Fun program. I used to be the mom at the front of the line, in the chair, with the newspaper, later with my iPhone, with a venti Starbucks, eager to sign up her littles before the program filled up. Today? That was not me. I ride my bicycle by the park entrance upon starting and ending my ride, and today there were already vehicles filling the lot. Since Sophie would be a Junior Leader, and Charlotte is going into the 5th grade, there wasn’t going to be much competition at their levels. So I rode my bicycle and we got up there at 10:30 a.m. We didn’t have to sign up for Summer Fun Plus because the girls are big enough to meet me at home at the end of their sessions. I apologized to Kalina and Salele and told them I was really going to miss them this summer. Truthfully!  How fast kids grow up.

Sophie fits a shoulder rest on one of the violas she tried.

Then we took Sophie to Music Center of Hawaii to purchase a viola. We got her a 15″ Andrei Patras viola, made in Romania, which had a lovely, warm darkness to its notes. Sophie tried three violas, and we got her this one. She then took it to her lesson and the teacher proclaimed it a fine piece indeed. The girls have been taking piano for several years, and it’s exciting to see how Sophie has developed musically under the guidance of Mr. Fanning at Niu Valley Middle School. We expect Charlotte will also enter orchestra and learn another instrument. I like what the discipline does with their minds, I like the rhythmic ear worms it sets into their thought tracks and gets them to methodically work through other academic areas. Sophie is better at that than Charlotte, but I expect Kid2 will catch up.

Now we’re home. The sheets and towels are whirling in the washer and dryer. Bubbly o’clock started an hour earlier than usual. That might mean bedtime will come soon, too. I like the sound of that. Music to my ears.

Easter 2011 Ride: Peace & Love to all.


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My stats at Garmin.com.

My Easter 2011 bandana: Pink, yellow, peace & love.

Wrapped up my Easter ride by 9:45 this morning, pulling into the driveway minutes before John returned from his Honolulu Marathon Clinic session. I win! Haha. I did the hills, and it was a little hard today, but  I think Kamiloiki is harder than Makapu’u. I’m not sure why. I’m just not dying as much when I get to the top of Makpu’u. Took my pics, kept going. I lucked out this weekend. Both times I’ve launched from Makapu’u, there’s been no traffic and I’ve had the whole lane to myself to go flying down like a 10-year-old kid who is in a hurry to get home to a grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup lunch and some cartoons.

I kinda wish, though, that more drivers knew that they need to give bicyclists at least a three-foot berth when passing us on the road. I wish they knew we were entitled to the lane when we take it, although some feel the need to shave the hair off my legs when they gun it going by. Enough. Happy to have lived to tell the tale.

We’re getting together with the Bender Clan tonight. I’m making several versions of strata. I know it’s mainly a breakfast dish, but we used to always get together early on Easter. Not so much any more. The time has changed, but the menu seems to have stayed the same. One will be cheese, onions and bacon, another will be sausage, cheese, bell peppers, onions, mushrooms and bacon, and if I make a third, it might have some baby bok choy greens through it used as though it were spinach. With onions, bacon and cheese, of course!

So I should get busy!

Surfers at Diamond Head this morning.

Love to you all on this Easter 2011. Peace to the world, more charity in our hearts, and a broader world view toward those whose belief systems do not match our own, but nonetheless give them peace and focus.

BTB FTW & KMOB


@postaday 66; #postaday2011

Check my stats? http://connect.garmin.com/activity/71707089

I woke up this morning later than I had wanted at about 8:20 a.m. Something about sleeping beyond 7:30 sends me into a slight resignation that I might not accomplish all I want on any given weekend day.

I look out the window and the sky looks iffy. The wind is blowing. The yard needs work. Numerous chores neglected. Children to feed. You get the picture. I start thinking to myself that maybe I should stay home and get something done. But the problem with that is that I only get a fraction of those things taken care of. So when John kicks my butt out the door, despite my negative feelings inside, I relent. Part of the reason is I know I feel so much better after a ride or a workout at 24-Hour Fitness Hawaii Kai. Part of it is because if I only get a little bit done, and NOT ride, then there’s an exponential growth of negativity smoldering inside me, rendering me unbearable to be around.

I know some of you think that must be impossible! That I’m the most amazing wife, mom, friend, and cook alive. Go ahead and keep thinking that. Heh. But the man who married me knows better. And he can blame himself for building me bicycles and getting me to fall in love with doing something that makes me work my heart and lungs, my muscles, to BTB FTW & KMOB.

That would be BITE THE BULLET, EFF THE WIND & KICK MY OWN BUTT. And that is exactly what I did today.

When I came home the house looked great. John had the girls clean their respective areas, etc. The kitchen was ready for me to start the dinner that I have planned for the family tonight: cross-cut beef shanks roasting in the pretty blue Le Creuset Dutch oven, root vegetables, a perfect Sunday evening meal.

Today’s ride? The wind kicked my ass, the hills were tough, the traffic was intense, the other bicyclists, as usual, were quite friendly. Toward the end of my ride I encountered four guys who passed me on Kalanianaole Highway. I caught up with them in Portlock where they were cooling their heels. I went by and asked if they were mocking me, but they were just resting up. We compared notes and I told them I like to do the hills first and then do my ride. 31.61 miles today. They were on mile 80. Wow! I should figure out how to safely extend to 40, 50, 60 miles. I waved good bye to them when I turned off Lunalilo Home Road onto the Kaumakani Street closest to Kaiser High School, and I was home in less than five minutes. Good ride. FTW.

Hill Slayer: Solo Ride in the Wild


@postaday 65; #postaday2011

Check my stats!

Sat, Mar 5, 2011 8:15 AM Hawaii Time

Weathery at Makapu'u Lookout

The weather outside was frightful, but the ride it was delightful, and since I had an idea to go, I gave it a roll, gave it a roll, gave it a roll.

I wasn’t the only bicyclist braving the iffy weather conditions today. Surprisingly, I found the roads weren’t that bad, given how much rain we’ve had for the past few days. Bicyclists know to expect the worst conditions after the rain has a chance to dig up sharp objects amid road debris. Changing a tube out is often done in a downpour, so the conditions can be quite miserable. I’ve only had to change out a tube once. I’ve been so lucky I can’t believe it. Surely my number will come up.

I headed out on my own this morning at 8:14 a.m. and made it to the hill at Kamilioiki at about 8:24. When I get to that hill, I like to ride out of the saddle for as long as I can, almost to the light. Today the light changed against me while a soccer mom walked her kid across the street. I turned in and turned out so I wouldn’t lose much momentum. There’s another street encountered as the climb continues. I smelled cigarette smoke as I was trying to stay focused on going over what many professional riders would consider a bump. All I could think was that I had for breakfast a lovely apple banana, a whole wheat English muffin toasted with butter, and French-pressed coffee fortified with chocolate and organic low-fat milk. I was thinking how I had the right amount of sugars, caffeine and carbohydrates to get me up the hill. As I neared the crest, I came upon the source of the cigarette smoke and realized a construction crew that was working on a house paused to watch me go by. So of course I couldn’t just die there at the corner. I pushed on up and my heart rate reached 175 bpm. I geared down for more power and got back on the big ring to sail down the hill and get my lungs back. I proceeded toward the Ka Iwi Coast to my next nemesis, the hill to Makapu’u Lookout. For some reason, I get a bit of a schooling on Kamiloiki that keeps me riding up Makapu’u more conservatively. I got up to the lookout where only two cyclists were and I said hello, took my picture and after I sent it, I sailed back down to head to Diamond Head. Traffic was busy, and again, I was glad the roads weren’t so full of junk.

I passed a couple of guys on Kalanianaole Highway as I approached Niu Valley. I turned in and they didn’t. One was on a bike with aero bars and fat nubby tires. The other one was on a bicycle with fenders. He was wearing a T-shirt and board shorts and his butt crack was there for all to see. I thought I might blog about that.

I made my way through Niu and Aina Haina, then got off at the Kahala Mall exit and I saw the guys walking their bikes across the traffic island to ride along the road by Waialae Country Club. At this point, I’m waiting in the left-most lane with the cars to turn left and to take one of the side streets to the same road. Behind me was a blue BMW, with a driver who redeemed all BMW drivers in the world, because 99.9999 percent of them are jerkazoids. This person hung back and followed me until I got onto Kealaolu. The BMW driver also followed me until I got to Kahala Avenue. As they turned left toward the hotel, I turned right toward Diamond Head and gave them a shaka for their kindness. Maybe they ride?!

Clouds loom over the southern horizon as seen from Diamond Head Lookout.

So who do I see next? The butt-crack boys. This time I passed them just as we were approaching Triangle Park. I pushed myself up toward the lookout and got off there for a little break and a photo. They joined me. We talked for a few minutes. They had ridden from Haunama Bay. They were very polite and my plans to blog about a bicycling butt crack crumbled. How could I? So, yeah, sometimes I’m pretty sassy, but I can also be sweet and friendly. They had to work hard to do their ride. Some guys got so much attitude when they’re riding that it makes for unpleasant encounters on occasion. Today I have to say just about everyone I passed was friendly and most of them waved. I like that.

The weather held up. Got some sprinkles, the cloud cover thick, and it was quite cool. Perfect weather for a solo ride in the wild.