On the 5th of October, I completed my first triathlon. It was a sprint and a reverse. We started with a 5k run, then did a 19k bike, and finished off with a 700 meter swim.
You are never fully prepared for a triathlon until you do one. There was no way for me to really practice transitions which would have helped a lot. The weather had been nice all week but of course it was freezing the day of the triathlon. It was about 40 degrees F and there were 20 mph winds. Road bikes and wind do not mix well. I just crossed my fingers that the winds were in our favor. On the way out on the bike, it was a head wind. Imagine trying to ride your bicycle through water and that is about how it was riding through the wind. The best part? Having a 20 mph tail wind on the way back! Sometimes I didn’t even need to pedal and I was going 21 mph. I was freaking out just a bit because I had never gone so fast on my bike before.
My main goal for the triathlon was to finish and not finish last. I was 3rd to last coming in from the run, last to get on the bike (long transition), and I had passed 4 people on the bike so I got a good lead for the swim. There were many categories that people could be in and I ended up getting 3rd place in my category. I am really tall and not built to be a stick so I was able to enter the Athena category, which meant I weighed more than 150 pounds. I was very proud of myself for getting a medal.
Here are my medals (everyone got a completion medal):
Here is me after getting my medal:
The pool was outdoors and was NOT heated. It was about 60 degrees F so I ended up wearing a long sleeved neoprene shirt and my bike shorts over my swim suit for the swim. It was still really cold but I was not about to stop! There were so many people that flaked out of the swim and I couldn’t believe they would go all that way to quit. I am no quitter!
Before my husband and I got married, we agreed to both complete a triathlon before having kids. We both wanted to be in the best shape of our lives and to be able to show our children a healthy way of life. This was my first triathlon and my husband’s 3rd. I think I have been bitten by the bug though because I am already ready to do another triathlon There is a polar bear triathlon in December that is about 45 minutes from where we live so we will see!
This is another way I am showing PKD that it will not beat me!
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When I first got my Townie Electra cruiser bike, I didn’t get a preference on what it looked like. We bought it from my neighbor who was moving and didn’t want the bike anymore. I couldn’t really pass up on the price she was selling it for so we got it anyway. It is bright orange which is not really what I would have picked but it is growing on me. I wanted to make it more ‘me’ and do some modifications to it so it didn’t look like all of the other bikes in the store.
Here is what my bicycle looked like when I first got it:
My husband’s bicycle is the black one. Mine was just plain Jane so I started thinking about what I wanted to do to it. Blue/turquoise blue is my favorite color. If I would have picked my own bike, it definitely would have been a shade of blue or turquoise. I was shopping around on the Electra website and I found an awesome seat and handle bar grips set that would go perfect with my bike and it had turquoise on it! Then it hit me to add polka dots on my bike! I currently have the turquoise vinyl on order and one of my friends with a cricut is going to make the dots for me but here is my bike with new handle bars, new basket, new seat, and new grips:
Cannot wait to get the polka dots put on it so the whole look comes together!
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September 11, 2001. It is the day that changed the world we live in today. Today is a very bittersweet day. While we remember those that died on this tragic day, it is also my grandmother’s birthday.
She always says that she had the best birthday she ever had one year and then the worst the very next. Her 70th birthday was spent on a cruise ship with her daughters. It was the first cruise she ever been on in her life and had a blast. The very next year was 9/11/01.
I was a sophomore in high school on 9/11/01 and I will never forget that day. So many emotions and it seemed like the country just fell silent. So many innocent people died and so many people sent their loved ones to work not knowing it would be the last time they saw each other.
My husband was in pilot training for the Air Force on this tragic day. He joined before this war and has been deployed 5 times, since joining, fighting to keep us all safe and to help ensure nothing like this happens again. We met in 2009 and married in 2012. It’s days like today that I am extra proud to be a military wife.
Even though today is a very sad day for most, my grandmother had a great day. She lives in Ohio with a lot of my family and they always go out of their way to make her feel special. My family had a lunch party with a ton of food and they took her to the casino to play bingo (her favorite game). It makes my heart happy that she had a good day because, after all, it was her birthday first and there is no reason she should have a bad birthday.
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September marks 6 years since I have been diagnosed with PKD.
When I was first diagnosed, I thought the world was going to end. How on Earth was I going to be able to adapt to having this disease? I was going to have to completely change my lifestyle and cope with the fact that I was going to have to regularly see a doctor and be monitored for the rest of my life.
Now here I am, 6 years later, and I am absolutely happy with my life. I am not disabled in anyway and have been living a fairly normal life. Having PKD has actually made me more aware of what I am putting in my body and it has made me healthier because of it. It has also helped to keep my husband healthier because he eats what I make and if it were up to him, he would eat mac and cheese everyday. I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t be able to pass the PT tests the Air Force makes him do every 6 months to make sure their Airmen stay healthy and fit.
I used to see my doctor every 6 weeks at the beginning but now I only have to see him every 6 months, which means the disease is not progressing in a crazy fast manner which is mostly because of the fact that I take blood pressure medication, I drink lots of water, and I don’t eat a lot of sodium. Doing these things have been proven to slow the progression of the disease. It helps to keep me optimistic and I hope that I will never need a transplant.
I have refused to let PKD run my life but I have learned to embrace it. Here is to many more years.
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I love that when people see me being healthy and making good choices, that they choose to do some things that I do as well to improve their quality of life.
Everyone that I work with know that I show up every morning with a jug of water. It is a 2.2 liter jug that is the 8 glass of water that everyone should be drinking a day. They know that I drink the whole entire thing everyday because it is usually 3/4 of the way gone before I leave for the day. There are 8 people that work in my office on a regular basis and I have gotten 2 of them to go and buy a jug and start drinking more water.
You also saw in a previous post that I ride my bicycle to work everyday. Well one of my co-workers realized that she wanted a bicycle to ride. She does not live close enough to bike to work but she does get up every morning and rides 5 miles before coming to work and that is fantastic!
Being able to inspire people makes me so happy. I don’t do what I do to get other people to do it but it is nice to see other people taking steps to a healthier lifestyle by seeing what I do everyday. If I can do it, you can definitely do it. It only takes 6 weeks for something to become a habit and starting today only 6 weeks not that far away.
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I don’t know about anyone else but I think that plain Greek yogurt is disgusting. When I am using it and accidentally lick the spoon, I gag a little. The strange this is, if you mix Greek yogurt into anything, it’s amazing! It is such a versatile product. It can be used in tons of recipes to cut down the fat and calories and you won’t even notice! Here are some ways I used Greek yogurt:
Ranch Dressing – Get a packet of ranch dressing dip and instead of mixing it with sour cream, mix it with Greek yogurt. It tastes the same and it is so much healthier!
If a recipe calls for sour cream, mayonnaise, or cream cheese, use Greek yogurt instead! It is a straight up substitute too so no need to remember other measurements.
Orange Creamsicle Yogurt Bites
1 1/2 cups Vanilla Greek Yogurt
1 (3oz) package of orange Jello mix (can use sugar free)
Line muffin tin with 6 cupcake liners
In a medium microwave safe mixing bowl, combine yogurt and jello mi, stirring to combine.
Microwave on high for 2 minutes, stirring every minute.
Fill each cupcake liner with 1/4 cup of mixture.
Chill cups for at least an hour to set.
What do you use Greek yogurt for?
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If you didn’t read the title in Freddie Mercury’s voice from Queen’s song Bicycle, we cannot be friends (only kidding).
Ever since my husband and I moved to New Mexico, we have been trying to be more active. We both have acquired road bikes and just recently we both now have cruiser bikes.
By riding my bike to work everyday (when weather permits), I get in a total of 4 miles each day which equates to about 20 miles a week. That is just on my cruiser too. I am loving the extra exercise and the fact that I don’t have to fill up my gas tank quite so often. It’s a win win situation
The past 3 weeks, the weather has been beautiful in the morning (sunny, low 70s) so my husband and I have been taking our road bikes out and doing 12 miles around the flight line on base. It’s a great ride and I love that we do it together.
Each week, I hope to get a faster time and get to a point where I can do two laps. So far, I have improved my time by 6 minutes over the past 3 weeks.
I love cycling because it is low impact and it doesn’t put any pressure on my back which is important when you have enlarged kidneys.
What do you do to stay active? Do you work out with a friend or significant other?
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged biking, cycling, exercise, mypkdlife | Leave a Comment »