Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Camp Time!!

It has been a busy week.  I usually try to write when I feel like I have some insight to share but this week has been one for the books so just a quick run down.  I have been privileged to attend a training camp once a year since I started in this sport.  For the last two years I have come to Hillary Biscay's camp in Tucson.  There is so much value to stripping away all the demands of daily life and just focusing on training and what happens between the ears when all you have to concentrate on is the next workout.  Attending a camp that is organized, supported and well run really allows for huge gains and insights which is why I love this camp.  It is challenging and pushes up against self imposed boundaries that enable an athlete to see what they really can do!  Last year I brought two girls that I coach with me.  I remember them asking me on the first night if I really thought they could do it. Of course I responded with all the faith in the world in their ability to dig deep and get the work done.  Kris and Shelly did so well and learned so much that I wanted to share that experience with more athletes.  When camp time came around I opened it up to a few more. Shelly is occupied with another project, but Kris was in as were Linda, Aixa, Herb and Jeff.  I was so excited to see these camp freshman grow in the challenge.  I also couldn't wait to see what Kris had gained in her year of focused training since being here last.  The day came to load up all the athletes in the Beast and head west. Six athletes for a week of training equates to a lot of gear.
Note to self:  gear on top of the car may not stay there.  Required rearranging things mid way through the 13 hour drive.  All in all we arrived safely and everyone was in their respective casitats ready to hit it.  Jeff and Herb were staying with me and some new friends - Kate and Marc.  Kate is from Chicago and and camp first time-er.  Marc is a fellow HPB athlete and good friend who had just crushed Ironman Melbourne the week before and then came right to training camp.  Besides being a machine, he has the best attitude about this sport. We have been virtual training buddies for months so I was thrilled to finally get to put in some miles in person.  Just like going to camp as a kid, I couldn't wait to see my camping buddies from last year that were returning as well as make some new friends.  Tim and I have been on the phone at least once a week and facebooking nearly every day as we were so excited about camp and he has been crushing the bike. I have now named him Quadzilla and I was a bit nervous to see if I could still hang with him.  Neil was returning as well and bringing his way beautiful, smart, funny girlfriend who was also doing camp. We have seen each other over the year so I was more than ready to catch up with these two as well.  Since the hoof is still cranky, Coachie (AkA - Julie McCoy cruise director) had set up some therapy sessions for me.  I was bummed to not be able to run, but I am determined to get this healing thing right and keep my eyes on results.  So instead of running during the run sessions I got to get some extra ART or do some extra bike rides.  Riding in Tuscon is so fun because it is so different than home. 

Thursday morning I had one of the "bonus" rides to do - Gates Pass.  I had done it last year and was excited to get to maximizing my time here.  Jeff wanted to go with me as did Kate ( a new camper friend and roomie for the week) so I got to be the guide.  I love that ride because the views are epic, it is hard and fast at the same time and I know that it is a staple for those around here.  Knowing we were doing it later in the week, I decided to just get my cycling legs under me and enjoy the ride.  On the way back to the casita we ran into Coachie and GCM.  The Ironman Champ rode over as well and had some choice complaints about the TRX class she went to with Hillary.  Oh Boy do I know how she feels as I got the same treatment in November. Then it was off to pick up Tim at the airport and hit my favorite place to eat here - Pico Di Gallo.  I could eat my weight in food there!  It was amazing to connect with my friend and we could hardly contain ourselves with excitement as we knew what we were in for! I love first day of camp as that is when everyone is nervous and excited at the same time - feels a bit like race morning. 
                                          Me and Marc Rubin at the first camp night dinner. 
                                                  Tim was fired up over his swag bag!
                                 The girls with Me and Coachie!  How colorful we all look!

More on the next days in the next post....