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Loving to Tri

14 Things I’ve Learned in 2014

As 2014 draws to a close, I find myself reflecting on this past year, a year that was certainly filled with ups and downs. Before I finish up my plans for 2015, I’d like to look back on some of the things I learned in 2014.

1. Chocolate milk tastes great after a workout and definitely helps with recovery. If it’s cold outside, hot chocolate will really hit the spot. And, Happy Cow chocolate milk is definitely the way to go. Thanks to everyone who suggested I give it a try!

2. Compression socks and sleeves are quite possibly the best invention ever.

Love my PRO Compression marathon socks!

 
3. I look pretty dorky in a wetsuit.
4. Actually, I look pretty dorky all the time.

                                                           It’s really hard to decide which picture shows me at my dorkiest.

 
5. Bald eagles are fascinating creatures. Pretty much all year, I’ve been following a couple of bald eagles at Berry College in Georgia. The college has set up a couple of cameras in the trees near the eagles’ nest. Earlier in the year, I got to see an egg hatch and then watch the eaglet as it grew up and flew away. For the past few weeks, the eagles have been back at the nest, getting ready to lay another egg. The eagles really are majestic creatures, and I really want to see one in real life. Already planning a road trip with my Aunt Kate to go to Berry and see the eagles!

6. How to take a screenshot. Thankfully I learned how to do this; otherwise, you wouldn’t see that photo of the momma eagle sitting on her nest. I really am not all that good with technology, so I’m pretty proud I finally learned how to do this pretty simple task. I still don’t know how to take a screenshot on my phone. That’s for 2015.

7. Ginger snaps and Saint-André (or brie, in a pinch) is a really good combination. Give it a try – just spread some of the soft cheese on top of the cookies! It’s also good with a few grapes on the side.

8. I may despise mayonnaise, sour cream, and pickles, but combine them all together in a remoulade sauce and it’s delicious. Especially on a flounder po’boy at the beach.

It’s particularly delicious when this is the view from the restaurant!

 

9. Triathletes are some of the kindest people in the world. ‘Nuff said.

10. Inspiring people are everywhere. I’ve had the privilege of meeting some really inspirational people this year. Some I met through ballet – like Stonewall or my little 6 year old student who never complains about having to repeat exercises several times in a row because she “just wants to get better.” Others I met while volunteering at races or events like the Paracycling World Championships or the Paris Mountain Ultra (where I met a man who runs ultras while dealing with stage 4 cancer). I also got to meet some inspiring people, like the woman with lymphoma, while waiting for a triathlon swim to start.

11. Triathlon requires a lot of gear. And a lot of laundry. And a lot of showers.

12. Endurance sports are often more about mental fortitude than physical strength. In longer workouts when your body starts to feel just a little bit tired, your mind will often jump in and exaggerate the feeling of fatigue. If you can shut up the voice inside your head that’s telling you that you’ve done enough for the day, your body will find a way to make it happen.

13. My favorite way to decompress after a long day of work or training is with garage time. Basically, I like to sit on a lawn chair in my driveway (or in the garage if it’s raining) and have a glass of bourbon. It’s pretty white trash but awesome.

I even look dorky during garage time!

 
14. I am very blessed to have a kick-ass family. My dad is awesome and my go-to bike expert. I’ve also got an amazing brother, sister-in-law, and mom, not to mention aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents. I got to spend some good quality time with two of my grandparents before they passed away this year, and I’m so lucky to have had them in my life for so long!

Me and dad on the way up the watershed.

Mom and dad
Grandma and Grandpa
 
 
Aunt Kate and Uncle Richard
 
 
Cousins, Will and Sara
Brother and Sister-in-law
 
 
 
Almost the whole gang (mom’s side of the family)
Miss you Grandmother and Granddaddy!
What important (or not-so-important) things did you learn in 2014?
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