|Snowy trail, but I'm in shorts on January 7th!|
January: Groin injury sustained during a particularly nasty run in the snow. Thought it could be anything from a torn hip labrum through a femoral neck stress fracture. Still don't know what it was, exactly (never saw a doc), but took 10 days off from running and commenced regular lateral hip strengthening exercises. Whined a lot.
|Dorking it up at the indoor tri in February.|
February: Slashed my toe open in the pool a couple of days before the Runner's Den Indoor Sprint Tri. Raced, had fun, and really surprised myself with the pace I was able to maintain on a 5k course that's basically one giant hill, run down and then up twice. Also started the blog, much to your chagrin.
|Just me and my buddies at Around the Bay in March.|
March: Managed to keep from re-injuring myself during a tightly compressed mileage build for the Around the Bay 30k, at which I like to think I acquitted myself admirably considering I'd been ready to sell my bib just a month or so beforehand (see: January).
|Muddy at the finish line in Ancaster in April.|
April: Went every so slightly faster at the Paris to Ancaster 60k than the year before. Have convinced myself that the improvement of only 5mins is due to the course being tougher this year than last (with the substitution of a muddy country lane for a stretch of dirt road). No excuse has been found for finishing near the back of the pack, though.
|Heading out of T1 at Woodstock in May.|
May: A spectacular 10k PR at the Mudpuppy Chase and the triathlon season kickoff in Woodstock! I probably had more fun in May than any other single month this year.
|Racing for my Dad at Welland in June.|
June: This is the month that nearly did me in. Our bedroom ceiling collapsed, requiring about $6,000 in roofing work and new bedroom furniture. I barely made it through the 160km Tour de Grand on the hottest day of the year, and to top it all off my Dad passed away suddenly on Father's Day. The only good thing that came out of June was my rather breakthrough performance at the Welland Triathlon, blowing away my prior times on that course.
|Finishing a tough day at Gravenhurst in July.|
July: As I drew closer to my planned "A" race of the season, training had given way to life's upheavals. The best I could hope for was to get through unscathed, and to enjoy a weekend away. Despite all that and a ridiculously hot, sunny day, I only narrowly missed going sub-3 hours at the Gravenhurst Olympic Tri. I had an amazing weekend with my husband, had an absolute riot volunteering on the swim and run courses for the Sunday races, and only came crashing back to reality when another piece of our stinkin' house broke. Right before we were leaving for vacation. Crap. Some heated phonecalls and $1,100 later the problem was solved.
|Broken and unhappy at Mine Over Matter in August.|
August: Started with an incredible motorcycle tour through Quebec City, the Laurentian Mountains and Montreal, and ended with me breaking my left wrist at the Mine Over Matter off-road tri and my first DNF ever.
|Ill advised indeed at Lakeside in September.|
September: Because I'm too dumb to know when to stay down, I raced the Lakeside Olympic tri 3 weeks after breaking my wrist, then the Tour de King 50k mountain bike race 2 weeks after that. In between, we spent most of a week in Alberta (with a side trip to British Columbia) visiting with Tanker's family and seeing beautiful things.
|Running happy at Vulture Bait in October.|
October: I finally got my cast removed on the 3rd, just in time to set another huge PR at the Vulture Bait 25k trail race. I managed not to fall on my injured wrist there, but wasn't quite so lucky on a miserable day at the Horror Hill 6-hour toward the end of the month. Fortunately there was no real damage done, and I was able to finish out the race despite the mud.
|Tanker and I in Blair in November.|
November: All races being done for the year, I decided to start reviewing products for my weekly blog posts rather than bore you with too many details of training and me, me, me. I relaxed a little and ate too much, but I don't really take time off from training - I just make it more about fun than improvements, and try to spend more time with friends and family. My wrist continued to improve - my ortho was impressed and said he wouldn't need to see me again - and I was able to ride my mountain bike comfortably, so Tanker and I explored some new trails together.
|Trying not to blind myself in December.|
T'was 8 days before Christmas,
when I went for a ride;
but not on the trainer,
no I went outside!
It was mild and damp
as I climbed on my bike,
but at 4 degrees above zero,
hey, what's not to like?
Not a cyclist was spotted,
except for myself -
all dressed up in red,
like some giant elf!
I pedaled along happily,
enjoying the lights,
and wish all my fellow riders
Merry Christmas and goodnight!
So there you have it. While I'm very pleased with some of my performances this year, the setbacks and tragedies that have interspersed the bright moments have been nasty enough that I'm looking forward to starting afresh in 2013. My race schedule is already filling up, and I'm still hoping to hear some good news from my sponsors for the season to come. In the meantime, I wish you all the best for a happy, productive and prosperous new year!