I'll just bet this was my last paddle of the year in short sleeves. The water is cool and the air is warm today, but not for long... the fish know the cold weather is coming soon and they are finding their way up into the bayous for the winter. Crowding up into the bayous, I would say. Of course the mullet are always around, flying through the air like skipping stones. I caught one in mid-jump!
An egret fished along the edge of the grass. Mom wonders why they are white. What advantage could they possibly have, to be white in this environment...?
The sun seems really out of place as it drifts by day to the south. Prior to watching the sunsets regularly from Graveline, I would never have guessed that it travels so far between the summer and winter solstice.
And I've learned never to assume the sunset is over, just because the sun is out of view beyond the horizon.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Cool weekend - a nice recreational paddle on Saturday in Graveline with two visiting friends from Texas, and the PPP race on Sunday. Couldn't ask for better weather! It was beautiful both days, with sun, slight breezes, and about 80 degrees.
The race was a lot of fun and I'm happy with the results. I knew my running would be better (7 1/2 min faster for the 5 mile run) but I'm surprised with the much quicker paddling time (4 min faster for the 4 mile paddle). Made up a mere 30 seconds on the bike. The course was exactly the same as last year so I must just be faster.
I'm in the water in my blue kayak:
I got to see a lot of kayaks, and appreciate how challenging kayaking can be for those who aren't that familiar with it. Again the GCRC did a great job putting on the event.
I'm enjoying all three these days -- the kayak, running, and biking. How cool is that to do them all together in a challenge like that! So what's next... I want to go back to Longleaf Trace again soon. Can't belive it's almost the end of the year. How time flies. Well, at least these days I'm feeling pretty sure that there can be an active life continuing after the old age of 40, which is coming up quick, before Christmas this year.
Friday, October 12, 2007
With 8 days left before the PPP event, I replicated the entire race today for a big training session.
PADDLE - 4 mi paddle (blue line) - 54 min. Last yr time 45 min.
PANT - 5.1 mile run (red line; one way) - 47 min. Last yr time 52 min.
PEDAL - 22.6 mile bike (yellow line; two ways) - 1 hr 21 min. Last yr time 1 hr 22 min.
My goal is to finish under 3 hours and the GPS said I finished in 3 hours exactly. I think I can make up time in 3 areas: transition time, the length of the run, and a better bike path. I was a little long on the run, and my bike path was on some less than ideal roads, so there's a little time. The transition time is key - if I have everything really ready to jump in and go, I can save several minutes. Anyway it went well; I feel pretty good, but like I need a nap. My lower back was tightening up at the end just like during last year's race. Nothing I can't get through. I'll push it more than last time since now I know for sure I can finish. My running time is definitely better. My paddle time was not as good. Possible I was in better paddling shape last year, but could be just that I had some wind today. I think the Wolf River course will be easier.
The weather was GREAT and it's a spectacular time of year to be outside end enjoying things. It's a rare day off and I intend to make the most of it.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
I haven't had time to do long paddles lately, but I try to get out on the water at least once a week, even if for a short trip before dark. Mom gets credit for this picture; I edited it for paint effects. Another paddle a couple of days ago was a real lifesaver. I must have had stress built up, because I sprinted across the bay without stopping and never ran out of energy. It felt awesome and definitely restored my sanity.
There are a lot of fish in the bay, and the water has cooled considerably. There's a feeling of fall in the air and the water.
2 1/2 weeks until this year's PPP event. I haven't trained at all on the bike but have been going to spin class regularly. I'm confident I can run the 5 miles. Even without specific training I think I'll do better than last year, because I'm 20 pounds lighter. But I'll try to get in a few training runs this weekend and next, to make a good show and meet a good challenge.