The Bizarre and Unusual Sport of Paintball

I met my husband in 2004 on an online dating site and in his profile it said he played an unusual sport at a Professional Level. I was intrigued. He soon introduced me to crazy the world of competition paintball.

After watching him a few times and the speed and velocity of the paintballs flying around and the action on the field it was something to behold. He was, and still is a fantastic player and was known for being 1 of the fastest shooters in the Australian game.

I had played Paintball once about 5 years earlier in the bush after winning a radio competition and didn’t really get too involved just watched the front runners win the game for us. It was fun.

Generally speaking there are 2 different styles of paintball in Australia, 1 being bush ball, which as its name describes is playing in the bush and the 2nd is Sup-air where the game is played on a football style field with inflated obstacles known as bunkers. (As most of my readers are non-paintball players I will speak in laymans terms, like many sports Paintball has its own language).

A year into our relationship and I was personally thrown into his unusual sport, hubby signed me up for an amateur charity tournament, with no training, kitted me out in all his hand-me-down gear. They tell me I was the best dressed amateur in town. Because I was such a “newbie” towards the end of the tournament they gave me an advanced Marker (aka paintball gun) and I could shoot a lot faster, don’t think it made all that much difference but I had a great time.


At my first tournament. The best dressed “Newbie” in town.

My addictive and competitive personality took over and before I knew it I was going to training with him every 2nd weekend. Pretty soon I was invited to join an all-girls team “Bitchin” in the Semi-pro Division, I was not very good but keen to learn. My position was as a “Back” player, this is a non-glory position where you keep the firepower humming so that the front runners can move up the field and win the game. This was also hubby’s position on his team, he taught me a lot about shooting fast and playing better and was my biggest supporter.

Over the years that I played I was fluctuating around my heaviest weight, but I was sort of fit as I was doing my Indoor Rowing 2-4 times a week, but as I have said before every sport is different type of fit and after a weekend of playing tournament Paintball the muscles sure felt every bit of the games.

Over time my skills improved and our all girls team “Bitchin” morphed into a co-ed team as at that time it was hard to find female players in a male dominated sport. After we went co-ed we won and placed at a few Tournaments in Semi-Pro Division. The last tournaments I played with Bitchin in Nov 2007 were The Masters which is the biggest tourney of the year in Australia and then we finished off the year in December with a highly competitive tournament in Malaysia, we just missed out on making the final 4.

Team Bitchin' as we competed in Malaysia. Photo Credit - Desmond Foo - The Third Eye

Team Bitchin’ as we competed in Malaysia, I’m on the right.
Photo Credit – Desmond Foo – The Third Eye

Among the action in Malaysia with my Pink Gun (paintball is a highly accessorised sport).

Among the action in Malaysia with my Pink Gun (paintball is a highly accessorised sport).
Photo Credit – Desmond Foo – The Third Eye

The shot that makes me cringe, if I had shot him before he shot me we would have made the finals.  Photo credit - Desmond Foo - The Third Eye

The shot that makes me cringe, if I had shot him before he shot me we would have made the finals in Malaysia.
Photo credit – Desmond Foo – The Third Eye

Hubby and I were both largely overweight and talked a lot about if we were slimmer how much better we could play. I still sit back and wonder why, with my competitive nature this game and my desire to be better, could not inspire me to lose weight. I wanted so much to be able to move up the field and take some of the “glory”, which I did in a few games but not as much as I would have liked. There were other aspects as well including the clothing that you could buy, some styles of pants didn’t come in my size, others were uncomfortably tight, I always had to buy mens T-shirts not the nice ladies styles and sometimes even the mens didn’t fit, secretly this really bothered me, but obviously not enough to do anything about it.

The reason I have dragged up my BB (before baby) paintball life, is that some of the girls who I have previously played with from the USA (it is a much bigger sport overseas) came to play a tournament recently and it rekindled my desire to get back out and play. Now as much as it is not practical for me as a mother to be out playing and training every 2nd weekend I would relish the chance to jump on the field for a tournament and play with some of my old gal pals. I would like to see if being 20+ kilograms lighter could make me a better and faster player and I would like to get out there and inflict some pain on some of the boys.

I made some great and lifelong friends both in Australian and overseas from playing paintball and hubby and I had some of our best times travelling around Australia and internationally playing Paintball, even incorporating a trip to Huntington Beach USA into our honeymoon to watch a major event.

When I go to watch a game I realise I really do miss it, so look out one day soon, my pink gun and I might make a comeback at a Paintball field near you.

Introducing – Master Kirby

So 2 weeks ago a new little man entered my life and stole another piece of my heart. He is so adorable and I’m not the only 1 who thinks so.

I was scheduled to have a possible Caesar almost from the beginning of my pregnancy, with different triggers throughout my pregnancy eventually confirming the procedure. My doctor arranged it 10 days before my due date and as any pregnant woman will know those last few weeks become more awkward and uncomfortable so the earlier the better as far as I was concerned.

My doctor operates in the afternoon so fluffing around the house until it was time to leave around midday was strange, knowing that in a few hours we would have our new addition to the family. Throughout my pregnancy I felt like I was having a boy and secretly hoping, but as any parent will agree, I was just hoping for a healthy baby. But when the nurse announced that it was a boy I burst into tears.

The name Kirby had been in the pipeline for over 4 years from when I was pregnant with Miss 4 and it was 1 of the few boy names that hubby and I both agreed upon so was kept secret just in case we were ever blessed with a little man and here he is.

Introducing my little man - Kirby at 1 day old.

Introducing my little man – Kirby at 1 day old.

Weighing in at 8lb 11oz or 3930g, 53cm long they say he was a big boy but a newborn is still tiny to me.

Now to give you my pregnancy stats my starting weight was 108.8kg (240lb) and on the morning of “baby day” I was 122.8kg so exactly 14kg (31lb) gain all of which I had put in on the last half of my pregnancy. Exactly a week later I was 113.9kg so nearly 9kg lost (I amazed myself). Now 2 weeks later I am only 2kgs off my pre-pregnancy weight so watch this space.

The week that was – Quarterly Report

I have not done a weekly wrap up for waaaay too long so I thought I would call this post the Quarterly Report.

The reason for being MIA is a combination of numerous things:

1)      Pregnancy – it is hard to find things to write or brag about when you are not striving for new goals, it has taken a few months to realise that you can’t be doing PB’s whilst in 2nd and now 3rd trimester of pregnancy, you are carrying an important cargo and must take things a little easier than before.

2)      Sickness – for about 6 weeks on and off I have been sick, lethargic, tired and whingey (if you believe my hubby). It has been a combination of never ending runny nose, horrid reflux and flu-like symptoms and not being able to take medication has made it drag on and on. Occasionally I would have a good week and then relapse again. I am pleased to say I have been sickness free for about 2 weeks. During my sickness, cake, sweet food and take-away has been my friend and in 6 weeks I have put on about 5kg.

3)      Candy Crush – OMG anyone who plays this absurd time-wasting phone/Facebook app/game will understand its addictiveness, I started playing this game about 6 months ago but got really addicted while I was sick and plonked on the lounge, bored with TV choices I would play it non-stop from the time Miss 3 would go to bed until I could barely keep my eyes open or run out of lives. I heard on the lolly-vine that the game had an ending so I played it so much until finally about a week ago I finished Level 335 and it would not let me play anymore. THE END. I have been having massive withdrawals and checking almost daily that they have not created an update for the game which may let me play on. I hope that day never comes or enough time has lapsed that I stop looking for more Candy Crush.

So with all of my excuses behind me it was time to get my head back into my fitness and keep my pregnancy weight gain under wraps. It had been over 8 weeks since I had a review of my gym program so I scheduled that in to get me on the right track for where I was with my pregnancy.

Whilst I was sick I was still managing 1-2 sessions a week when I could function and was still doing a little bit of jalking (jog/walk) during my outdoor class and some running intervals on the treadmill.

This week I managed to get to my Tuesday Buggy Fit (mums n bubs) class, I have slowed down a lot to a jog or brisk walk, but found things like push-ups, burpees and other exercises where you go from ground to feet a lot more difficult. Some of this weeks’ exercises involved some short runs and then 3 push-ups, my theory or logic was if I’m getting on the ground I’m going to make the most of it, ie 10 push-ups, so that is what I did.

Wednesday morning I went for my gym program review, the outcome was no more running on the treadmill, instead do a fast walk on an incline and to drop down my leg weights by about half, like leg presses and leg raises but keep arm and upper body the same. It was also suggested to do cardio and legs 1 day and then cardio and arms in another session. So I stuck around and did my cardio/legs session before work.

Saturday morning after a terrible night’s sleep I decided to push through the tiredness and did my cardio/arms session. The weather was beautiful and warm and later in the day I really wanted to go for a swim in our local ocean pool. I feared that I would get to the pool and dip a toe in and chicken out, hubby suggested not dipping a toe in and just diving in the water. I made a pact that if the water temp was 19 degrees or warmer I would go. So hubby gets his Google on and tells me that the temp was 19 on the dot, damn him and Google. So off I went. Upon putting on my swimmers and boardies on I felt like a beached whale, best not to look in the mirror. I realised that I had not been swimming at all since I did my last triathlon and I was concerned that I have lost a lot of my fitness. Anyway I got in the water up to my knees and was having 2nd thoughts it was cold, but after standing there for a few minutes I decided to dive off the step and just get wet. So I plunged in, gasped a little bit (unlike a similar time last year, read about it here) and proceeded to do a few laps, I managed to do 500m starting and stopping, I could have done more but decided after already being at the gym to not push too hard, but swimming is something that I think will get me through this 3rd pregnancy trimester.

So after getting 3 sessions and a swim in 1 week I was happy and have a bit of motivation back. This weeks’ goal is to do it all again and maybe swim for longer (in a princess heated pool). Lay off the cake and I have been indulging in a bit too much soft drink so I need to back off that a bit too.

The week that was – hanging in there

Monday – I dragged my “I don’t want to go to training” butt off the lounge and went to my evening session of Indoor Rowing, (Monday nights at 7pm are getting so hard now it is cold and dark). I was well worth it, after a good warm up we got back on the rower for 6x 30 second intervals as hard and fast as possible, I smashed it. But then my trainer threw another set at me and what do you know I got better again. I guess that’s why I pay him the big bucks.

Tuesday – I went to my gym EnVie and was going to go to the outdoor session but with rain looking imminent I decided to go to “Indoor Gym” as Miss 3 calls it. I decided to carry on with cardio after last night session I wanted to push myself. So after a warm-up on the Crosstrainer and then a warm-up on the tready, I upped the speed and started doing 30 second intervals, my fast 30’s I started at 8kph and then upped it by 0.5 to 1 each time until I cracked 12kph, I did 2 intervals at 12 and then started a slower decline back down. My previous best on the tready was 10.5kph so when I actually got back down to that level it actually felt easy (for 30 seconds anyway). Overall I did 12 intervals and dare I say smashed it again.

Wed – no workout

Thursday – Miss 3 and I had a big day of renovations ahead as the floorboards were being sanded tomorrow. Thankfully I had a salvation in my friend Cindy who came to pick up Miss 3 to take her to a friends house for messy fun day, leaving me free to get things done a lot quicker. I started working at 8am and apart from a few quick breaks throughout the day didn’t stop until about 8pm that night. Repairing floorboards, pulling out tacks and packing the last minute things away. Exhausted.

Friday – No rest for the wicked I was up at 4.45am to carry on moving the last of the furniture etc then headed off to work. We packed up the family and went to stay the weekend at “The Outlaws” so the floors could be sanded.

2013-05-04 06.34.07

Hello Sunrise – I don’t see you often enough.

Saturday – I got up early to drive ½ hour to boxing class (normally only have to do a 1 minute walk), I am pleased I made the effort, I did catch a beautiful sunrise, I was feeling a bit tired and lethargic but managed a half decent class. I popped in to see how my floors were going and they were looking amazing. I headed to a café to have some quality alone time a bite of breakfast and a Skinny Chai Latte, aaah the serenity.

Sunday – we had a great family day at the local Air Show, Wings over Illawarra. I had never been before and it was a pretty good day, things for all ages. Miss 3 of course spotted the kids rides from a mile away. My nemesis favourite Mini Donut van was there but I somehow was not hungry at the time and managed to steer clear.

The finished floorboards, let the painting and decorating begin.

The finished floorboards, let the painting and decorating begin.

So I think a pretty productive week of exercise considering the fact we are mid reno’s and had to move out of home for the weekend and keep some sort of normality in our lives. This week may be different there is so much painting to do and I think I will be using every spare minute, plus tradies coming.

The week that was – getting moving

I have neglected to do a proper weekly wrap for a few weeks, I can attribute this to the fact I have dropped the ball a bit with my training and had not a great deal to report, so I got my head back in the game and managed to get myself moving this week and keep going.

Monday – I returned to my Indoor Rowing PT session and although not feeling entirely motivated I managed to do a workout that inflicted some pain on ye ole muscles the following day.

Tuesday – I tossed up between going on an expedition to IKEA and doing a session at the gym. I needed things from IKEA for our home renovations and being that it is an hour trip each way and about 3 hours to venture around the store it truly was an expedition with Miss 3.5 in tow. So the end result is I ditched a gym session and went shopping.

Sometimes IKEA is the winner.

Sometimes IKEA is the winner.


Wednesday – I really wanted to do a workout to make up for yesterday’s shopping trip but work got in the way, I should have no excuses but life does get in the way.

Thursday – Anzac Day I had a call from some friends to say they were at our local Café, so I rounded up the family on the bikes and we headed down and had a drink and a play at the park, then we headed off for a bike ride. Miss 3 was very whingy and I only managed to get about 3k before the whinging drove me mad and I turned around, so a 6k ride was all we did.

Friday – I had a late start at work so headed to the gym to tackle my new weights session, so I did a 10 minute warm up on the Crosstrainer and then managed to do 3 sets of 10 of my new program and even bumped 1 of my weights up.

Saturday – I could feel the pain from yesterday’s weights but I did make an effort to get to a 7am boxing class. I found a good boxing buddy of similar level and fitness which makes a big difference to the class.

Sunday – back to home renovations and moving boxes and boxes of stuff and furniture to rip up carpet in 2 rooms, we managed to get 1 room done entirely and remove all the nails and tacks. We have to get the other room done this week as the floors are being sanded next weekend.

So with 3 good sessions with my gym and PT and lots of incidental exercise I feel like I have got back on track.

My goal for this week is to keep this up and add in that extra session instead of shopping.

The Week that was – boring, boring, boring

So for the last few weeks I haven’t done my weekly wrap, I think it stems from being bored with my workouts and bored with writing about being boring. I have been a bit lazy, busy and pre-occupied and my workouts have suffered.

I have ditched my Monday night Indoor Rowing and PT session for the last 2 weeks (not feeling well). My gym EnVie sent me my very first SMS and email this week saying I hadn’t been to see them in a week and it was almost to the minute, I had been in the previous Wed morning and by Wed lunchtime the nagging had commenced. Needless to say I was in there Wed afternoon.

I think also not having an immediate goal to work towards, (triathlon or other event) makes me lack some motivation. There are plenty of things on my radar, fun runs, family cycling event but the other thing I need to consider is the cost, these events all range from $25 to $100 so on top of all my training costs each month it is hard to justify the spend and then I get excited and want to do a couple a month, something I can’t sustain. I know most of them are to raise money for very worthy charities but it is still out of pocket expenses that must be considered.

So I am going to try to step it up this week and attend all my normal sessions and make the weekly read next week a lot less boring.

So who likes reading my weekly updates or what would you like to read more about?

Gaining Weight – The Horror Story

For the last 22 years (all of my adult life) there have been many many many attempts at losing weight. Multiple times for some things.

So I am a hoarder, especially when it comes to weight loss programs, I have drawers and cupboards full of programs. I found a few of my Weight Watchers weigh-in cards and this is where the Horror Story begins:

And here I thought I was fat.

And here I thought I was fat.

Feb-Jun 1995 (age 22)
Starting weight 87.5kg
Finish 83.1kg
Total Loss 4.4kg

Aug-Oct 1999
Starting Weight 109.2kg
Finish 106.8kg
Total Loss 2.4kg

Apr-Jul 2004
Starting Weight 108.7kg
Finish 106kg
Total Loss 2.7kg

Jun-Aug 2005
Starting Weight 129.3kg
Finish 128.1kg
Total Loss 1.2kg

1994 - One of my major horse riding acheivments competing at Sydney Royal Easter Show.

1994 – One of my major horse riding acheivments competing at Sydney Royal Easter Show.

Wow putting this down on paper has been really scary, the thought that in 10 years I put on 45kgs is horrifying considering my attempts were all to lose weight not gain it. I can see how if you average it out 4.5kg per year can just creep on and you just go up 1 size in clothes and voila 10 years later you are hitting size 24-26 and 45kg heavier.

Some other things I have tried over the years have been; Tony Ferguson (shakes), Hypnotherapy, Online weight loss, a variety of other shake programs, Dietician, The Biggest Loser Club, the Cabbage Soup diet, Calorie counting, low carb, no-carb, Light ‘n’ Easy and Sure Slim. These are just the memorable one’s, memorable because all of them were epic fails. I will admit now that it was never the plan or program that I was on that was a failure, it was all me. I could never stick to anything for any decent length of time or I would be the Weekday Angel and Weekend Devil. Basically all of my adult life I have been on 1 diet or another. Monday “Begin Again Girl”, that’s me.  

I was every Gym’s dream member, signing up so many times and then not attending, I have bought fitness equipment off late night Infomercials that later got sold in a garage sale or didn’t sell and therefore the Ab Sculpter is still under my stairs 15 years later.

At my blossoming best.

At my blossoming best.

I had an epiphany (just now) as to what key factor happened in 1995 to start the uphill weight climb, in 1995 I sold my beloved horse, I had ridden horses since I was about 9 and competed at a fairly decent level. So going cold turkey on the only exercise I had every really known I would say played a big part in my weight gain.  

Not to mention I had my driver’s licence and fast food outlets were booming and popping up conveniently (with a small detour) on my way home from work.

So all these years later I may have just discovered where my Horror Story began, do you know what triggered your weight gain and how successful have your weight loss plans been?

Here I am the fat funny person.

Here I am at my heaviest (excluding pregnancy) still the fat funny person.

Once upon a time ….. I got a Lap Band

This post has been in draft format for quite a while, mainly because I never had the photo’s I wanted to go with it.

So nearly 3 years ago I had a Lap Band or Gastric Band surgically put in to try and aid with weight loss.

What is Lap banding or Gastric Banding? It is a “Keyhole/Laparoscopic” surgical procedure which takes about 30-45 mins, it is fastened around the upper stomach to create a smaller pouch which restricts the amount of food that can be consumed. They also place a port on your abdominals to give access for adjustments. Adjustments are simply done in your Doctors surgery by inserting or removing fluid to restrict or allow less or more food.

Just like this.

Just like this.

How much does “Lap Banding” cost? Well from memory it was about $16,000 full cost per person and about $5000-6000 out of pocket after our Health Fund (Top Cover) paid their part. I think Private Health Funds are becoming more aware of the fact, this type of Surgery is becoming more popular and changing their Cover so that only their Top Policy covers this. FYI at the time Hubby was with NIB and I was with NRMA (now Bupa). If you are considering it, contact your Private Health Insurer or if you don’t have one, then get 1, most from what I have heard require you to have the relevant cover for 12 months before the procedure. There are other surgical options, the sleeve or tube or gastric bypass and the temporary stomach balloon, so best to talk with a Gastric Banding specialist to see which 1, if any, are right for you.

To share my personal experience of Lap Banding, I have mixed emotions.

Top pic at 132kg (my heaviest excluding my pregnancy). Bottom pic at 107kg after a 25kg loss. Bottom photo by

Top pic at 132kg (my heaviest excluding my pregnancy). Bottom pic at 107kg after a 25kg loss. Bottom photo by

On the positive side: I have lost 25kgs and feel great; because of that it has given me the energy I need to exercise more and not put so much stress on my body carrying around all that extra weight; it has shown me I don’t need to sit down to giant meals or 3 courses all the time; I have learnt to share food (despite what my husband may say); I have been able to wear nicer clothes and feel better about how I am looking; I like getting my picture taken, more than I used to; I love that I have much better agility and ability to play with my little dynamite daughter.

On the negative side: “Keyhole” surgery, left 5 scars, 4 small and 1 much larger than I expected (see picture); if you are not careful how and what you eat you can vomit (often), this can also lead to slipping of the band and require further surgical procedure to rectify or have the band removed; over-eating with the band can cause reflux. I have had all of the above happen to me, I over-ate just a little bit ie 1 mouthful, too often, ended up on reflux medication, vomited one too many times and my band has slipped. What I did to fix this was have all fluid removed from the band and the reflux was gone immediately and I am assessing having the corrective surgery. But for the moment I am trying to eat better without having fluid in, it still offers restriction without fluid. The other negative is that you can eat junk food easier than you can eat healthy food, lettuce, apples, steak, dry chicken breast are all more difficult to eat than chocolate, chips/crisps, chicken schnitzel, cheese and crackers. This absolutely differs by the individual, as hubby and I have different things we can eat without trouble. Another negative is I got to 50% of my weight loss and plateaued and have been there for over 2 years, fluctuating by 3-5kgs over that time.

The scar on my left side about 8cm wide. It has gotten better over the years but it is still a big hole.

The scar on my left side about 8cm wide. It has gotten better over the years but it is still a big hole.

My Lap band doctor has said throughout the process that everyone going through the surgery should see a Psychologist, because as much as it is a weight-loss aid it still doesn’t fix the underlying problem that most patients have with food. Personally I think it should be compulsory.

In summary, I would do it again, YES, a 25kg loss is great and I haven’t been fitter in my adult life than I am now. But if you are considering it I would definitely look at some assistance from a Psychologist and/or dietician or other slow weight loss program and give it another go before going under the knife. I had tried a lot of options over the years and there will be an entire post about that at a later date.

The Week that was – Recovering, Retail Therapy and Renovations

Monday I had the arduous 5-6 hour Road Trip home from my girls weekend away, getting in the car and hitting the road by 9am. I was supposed to be refreshed but I was still tired with a few late nights and the inability to sleep in, it eventually catches up with you. I was going to attempt to go to the gym but I was a little bit excited to see my girl after 4 days away from her, so I headed to school to pick her up, she was so excited she nearly squeezed my head off and would not let me go, I loved it. 

The scary total of 21 Champagne corks after our girly weekend.

The scary total of 21 Champagne corks after our girly weekend.

Tuesday we had our normal ritual of swimming lessons and I managed to get back in time for the Envie Buggy Fit class and we had a full class of sand running/exercises. It was hell but good, it is always hard to run on sand, I tried to run as much as I could and always headed for the hard sand. It was a really good class and had to keep reminding myself that we pay them for this torture.

Wednesday morning I joined the swimming group for some training in the harbour. I always get there late, so I did 1 lap with the coach of the group and then did a few sprint laps with my trainer as well as some training for Tri swimming where he was pushing me around as I swam, simulating the crowded water. After swimming I had a little faux pas, I dived out of the car (wrapped in towel, straight from swimming) quickly posted a few letters and as they were going down the chute I realised that I had accidentally picked up some paperwork I had to deal with at the office including receipts that I needed for a financial claim and they were gone. Freaking out I had to stand out the front of the Post Office (in my towel) waiting for it to open to find out WTF I could do to get my paperwork back. So after explaining my predicament to the ladies at the PO she said come back after 2pm when the mailman has been, which I did and successfully got my paperwork back again. They had a snicker and asked where my towel was, a little bit embarrassing.

Bestie day was great, having a spot of sushi for lunch.

Bestie day was great, having a spot of sushi for lunch.

Thursday I had the most awesome girly day with my bestie (it was her 40th Birthday), we had a mani, pedi, lunch and shopping. AWESOME. I managed to spend some of my Birthday Vouchers and cashola, this is the Birthday that keeps on giving. I got myself some new runners from Athlete’s Foot. Leah my “Master Fit Technician” was amazing, analysing my feet on the fancy machine they have in store and asking me all the right questions to establish my shoe requirements.

My friendly and helpful Shoe expert Leah from Athlete's Foot.

My friendly and helpful Shoe expert Leah from Athlete’s Foot.

Bringing out a selection of shoes based on my footprint, pressure points etc. I was debating in the end between 2 different ASICS styles and then after trying each pair on both feet opted for ASICS Gel Kayano 19 in electric purple/white/neon/pink. Dare I say they were the best looking shoes I have seen in a while which never swayed my decision 1 little bit (oops may have told a small lie there). She also upsold me some Experia aero-dynamic fit socks and I upsold myself some neon stretch laces. Anyone who is doing any type of transition sports or is just too lazy to untie and retie shoe laces should get these, I love them. As an added bonus over the years I have spent a particular amount of money in their store and have managed to earn myself 2x $25 vouchers in loyalty points, so pending their fancy socks being great I should score myself 2 more pairs with the vouchers I will get in the mail. I did also manage to get into my Gym in the afternoon and did a very light 40min cardio session, with 10 min on the bike, 10 on the tready and 10 on the crosstrainer and a 5 min warm up and cool down on the bike. It is so hard to take it easy on taper week.

Oh yeah, my new shoes, socks and laces, lets hope they make me move faster.

Oh yeah, my new shoes, socks and laces, lets hope they make me move faster.

Friday started off amazing with my first phone call of the day from the local radio station initially trying to fool me into thinking Manu from MKR (My Kitchen Rules Australia) was calling and then revealing that I had been drawn out as the lucky winner of a $1000 voucher from Domayne kitchen dept. (Domayne sell a huge range of furniture, outdoor furniture, beds, homewares, laptops, bathroom vanities and appliances but my prize was to be spent in the Electrical Dept. with the only exclusions computers). To be entered in the drawer you had to submit a recipe. I submitted a recipe from my blog Prawn Saganaki. Happy Friday, yeehaa.

Saturday was T3 day, my 3rd ever Triathlon. Read about it here. After my Tri I came home to do some renovations, ripped up carpet, lino, and pulled out tons of staples. I think my muscles were more sore from doing the renos than the Triathlon.

Miss 3 playing Pro Hart before the carpet and other layers get removed.

Miss 3 playing Pro Hart before the carpet and other layers get removed.

Sunday back into renovation mode and I had to demolish a very well built, but ugly, old built-in wardrobe which took me about 4 hours plus finishing off pulling staples out of the floor. Dare I say it is amazing what you can do with a claw hammer and a big flat screw driver. More sweat and sore muscles. Oh and a quick mow of the lawn.

I could turn this into a renovating blog at the moment, lots going to be happening over the next few months. Next week stand by for a floor sanding update.

Have a great week everyone.

Tried Tri Again

So here I was about to attempt my 3rd Triathlon – Tri the Gong, being run by Elite Energy and I was again tackling the Enticer distance.

The morning of the event Hubby was flying in from overseas bright and early so his parents were picking him up from the airport and on the way picked up Miss 3 at 5.30am.

For some reason I felt no pressure or anxiety and was really relaxed before this race and got a good nights’ sleep.

I was getting ready and loading in the dark. There was 1 benefit of going alone was it didn’t matter too much where I parked as I just got on my bike and rode to the registration tent. I had trouble at the registration area as I stood in the 40+ line and they couldn’t find my information. I spoke to an official who advised me that you are categorised based on the age you were last Dec, which was 39, yeehaa, so still with the younger gals.

I met up with my friend Colleen near the registration area and we hung together for most of the day. We stood in the transition area to listen to the briefing and then headed down for the start of the swim. Our swim start was delayed 10 minutes due to an excessive amount of bikes on the bike course. The swim was in the harbour a bit of argy bargy for the first bit and some congestion around the buoys but mostly open water. Colleen and I swam almost side by side for the whole swim and she got out about 3 steps in front of me. We certainly didn’t come last, as I turned around coming out of the water there were still a few behind us.

I jogged and walk to my bike and had a really slow transition, I was a little bit too focused on getting all the sand and grass off my feet and putting on my shoes and socks, meanwhile people were coming and going. This is something I really need to improve on.

The course for the bike leg was 4 laps and my main concern was forgetting how many laps I had done, someone said to me you will remember that hill 4 times and they certainly weren’t wrong. The course was mostly flat with 1 big uphill but then you had the added benefit of 1 big downhill, winding around the beautiful Wollongong lighthouse and to a roundabout at the other end. I did enjoy the course, getting up out of the seat up the hill and putting on the speed going downhill whilst gasping and grasping for water. I overtook a few people on the bike leg and there was 1 section that was quite narrow which always seemed to be where I needed to overtake, with a little bit of caution I managed to get past and not fall off or knock anyone else off their bike. I was having a laugh to myself doing a bit of Sesame Street counting, as each time I would go past the Start/Finish of the bike leg I would count like “The Count”, 1 ha ha ha haaaa, 2 ha ha ha haaa, etc etc and would do that a few times on each lap so I knew where I was up to, small things amuse small minds as they say, but it seemed to work for me. I still had that doubt when coming into the finish line – “did I finish all my laps?”

I hate getting off my bike because it only means 1 thing THE RUN. I kept telling myself, its only 2k, you can run this far. My friend Colleen had said something to me earlier in the week which was “I don’t want to be the skinny person walking” and I must say, seeing people slimmer than me walking during the run leg at my last Triathlon almost gave me permission to walk and I did. This time I was determined to not walk at all. I remembered to grab my security blanket which is my water bottle, that way if I got a dry mouth I would have a swig and be happy and not feel the need to walk to catch my breath. I also didn’t feel the need to walk through the drink station and reward myself with the water and a walk, so I was set. I declined the drink station and kept on running, there were many many times I wanted to walk, especially when I saw all the skinny/ier people doing it. I just kept up my shuffle, I was being overtaken, every 2nd step but I didn’t care. I wanted to pick up the pace a bit but waited til I turned the half way mark and then up a small incline and once I got beyond all of that I went from a shuffle to a jalk (jog/walk as fast as a walk but still jogging – I made it up myself). In my speed terms a jalk is a nano second faster than a shuffle per kilometre. I was super excited to see the finish line and run under the giant inflatable NAB sign and then onto the official finish and even managed to pick up the pace to a Rachael Sprint (not as fast as anyone else’s sprint but faster than a jalk). For the first time in my Tri history as I was coming up to the finish line the announcer called out my name, so with a double fist pump in the air I crossed the line. The satisfaction of running the whole way was awesome, I was out of breath but excited. I had done my best and even if my best was last place, this time I was not concerned.

Crossing the Finish line

Crossing the Finish line

So the results were in, official 2nd last position (secret little cheer about not coming last), and finished in 46:28, now I was thinking that I must have broken some land speed records to improve from Husky Tri by over 12 minutes but then checked the distances and the bike leg was 1k shorter, but given that my average cycle pace is about 3min per kilometre I still made big improvements. I am not sure how accurate the courses for these events either but this race felt better (except for my swim/bike transition).

With my friend Colleen, she inspired me to keep on running.

With my friend Colleen, she inspired me to keep on running.

So for my age/sex category I came 29/30 and overall female 165/184.

Happy happy happy.


Gasping for air at the finish but somehow still smiling.

Gasping for air at the finish but somehow still smiling.