Sunday, March 30, 2014

Stomach of Steel . . . Or Not

It's been a while since I last wrote anything much.  The title of the post that I started writing but never finished was "10 Lessons I'd Rather Not Have Learned from the Stomach Flu."  Somehow I'm guessing that is one topic that you'd rather not hear about.  I do not want to relive that wretched and violent illness ever again, so we're going to just skip over that weekend of misery and pretend it never happened.

I survived on peanut butter toast and the occasional smoothie when my stomach finally accepted some nourishment, thus real food was nearly non-existent up until this weekend.

Work is going well and I'm really enjoying the orthopedic oncology service.  It can be a really depressing service with too many life-altering diagnoses, but the patients are rewarding to interact with and the surgical experience has been good - though a bit sparse.

Finally some signs of spring!
Now if we can just get some warmer temperatures to match the sunny blue skies.
Training has been fairly consistent, with the exception of the bump in the road courtesy of the GI illness.  I only completely missed two workouts, but it took me a few days to spring back to my usual self and recover from the effects of dehydration.  It's incredible how much dehydration can alter performance. My first bike after being sick was the same exact trainer workout as the week before.  The result, however, was an average power 40 watts lower to just to keep my heart rate from climbing out of the prescribed zone.

Week 10 - 9 hours, 11 minutes
Swim - 6700 yards
Bike - 5 hours, 20 minutes
Run - 13.71 miles
*Missed my 6 mile brick run and 3 hour base bike due to being sick*

Week 11 - 12 hours, 15 minutes
Swim - 9500 yards
Bike - 8 hours, 8 minutes
Run - 15.6 miles
*Missed 10 mile endurance run on Monday due to being sick*

Fortunately, I'm feeling 100% back to normal now and had good workouts this weekend.  Saturday was an interesting brick that was indoors due to rain:  5 x (30 minutes @170 watts, 1 mile zone 2-3 run).  Today we were finally greeted by sunny skies and I braved the high winds to enjoy a really great base ride with my brother and a couple friends.  The 40 mile ride was by far the most enjoyable of 2014!

I took two vacation days and created a long weekend to escape to Atlanta.  Although not exactly the warm spring break weather I would have preferred, it has been enjoyable to decompress, sleep a little later in the mornings, and even celebrate Royce's birthday.  For the birthday boy's dinner on Friday, we feasted on spaghetti, garlic bread, caesar salad, and a key lime bundt cake.  The return of my appetite couldn't have come at a better time!

Happy 26th Birthday Royce!  You're quite an accomplished young man and continue to impress me with your persistence, ingenuity, and hard-work.  Between your business instincts, financial knowledge, and budding flying skills, I couldn't be prouder nor grateful to have you as my "little" brother.

Saturday's trip to the farmer's market and Whole Foods provided the inspiration for the weekend's dinners.  First up was grilled oysters - a treat that will always remind me of summer vacations to the Florida Keys and eating dozens of the raw variety on saltines with cocktail sauce and lemon.  Grilled artichokes, salad, and garlic bread rounded out our meal.

After my 3-hour bike on Sunday, food was the only thing on my mind.  Spaghetti leftovers and veggies were the perfect way to refuel.

An afternoon nap and some time in the sunshine on the back deck were also excellent recovery strategies.

The last meal of the weekend was a great one!  Crab cakes with dijon aioli over sautéed kale, sweet potatoes, and roasted okra.  With the exception of the crab cakes, everything was freshly harvested by local farmers.  We're finishing out the night curled up in blankets around the fire pit.  Eventually the south will finally be granted some warm weather, but until then, we're doing our best to stay warm.

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