Wednesday, May 28, 2008


The Boy was only 5 years old. He had come to the Frozen Pond with his family. He was very new to ice skating. It would be a day to frolic on uncertain legs. The Pond glistened in the winter of light bounced off the frigid surface. The air was crisp and the sound of happiness was everywhere.

On the pond, was a concrete drainage well., with a railing around it.. But the boy was curious and soon..was too close. Dangerously close.

In a flash, he slipped and plunged into the well.. Moving water created a current and it was strong. He cried for help. His pleas competing with the shrieks of joy from other kids.

How long was he in the water?? Its not clear. Long enough for panic to engulf him.

As if by magic, an arm appeared. A strong arm grabbed the boy and lifted him up. By now, the parents had noticed he was missing. Their frantic energy was nearly combustible.

But the boy was out of danger. He was wet, scared...but okay. The terror of possibly losing a child was replaced with relief. The boy had been given a second chance.

The hero?? As quick as his strong arm lifted the boy..he had vanished. Who was he?? Where did he come from. Why did he hear the boy and not others??

The parents were confused, but soon calmed down and the days merriment soon overshadowed the "Big Scare". With time, the incident faded ... But not for the boy.
Why was he saved?. Who was the man?? If he should he live???

Over time, the boy thought back to that moment.. He never verbalized it, but had a sense that he was given a second chance in order to serve a purpose.

To this day, the park with the Ice Pond holds a magical appeal to the boy, now a man. Its where he comes to search for the limits of his potential. The place reminds him of the Power of a Helping Hand. The Power of Hope. Could he be the "Hand" that lifts up someones spirit??

He feels so in touch with the beauty of Gods World here. His time in the cherished place sometimes allows him to make sense of the fast paced world.

He sweats, and strives. His mind wanders. Miles come and go and problems melt away. Yes, he calls the place a training area, but its not just to strengthen his heart or prepare him for a race. The time there calms him, the air is invigorating. And, yes the memory sometimes brings him back to that little pocket of time, when a frozen pond changed from a spot where it all could end, to a place where everything is possible.....with Hope. The place?? North Chagrin Reservation...Strawberry Pond.
The little boy??

Now, about 50 years later, training for triathlons, or swimming long distances is striving forward with a purpose. To inspire. To get the most out of what I have been twice given..

Friday, May 23, 2008


Have easily recovered from the half marathon and have my sights set on upcoming races. The Edinboro Triathlon is nextSaturday. I am on the fence on this one. Traditionally, its been the first one of the year, but this season, I have two Half Ironmans I want to race. I might pass on Edinboro. Beauty of this race in past years, is that you could sign up for it the day of. Mountaineer in Morgantown WVA Half-Iron is the first Half Ironof this season for me.The Greater Cleveland Half Ironman that Mickey Rzymek puts on is the second. I always do the Fairport Lighthouse Sprint. Best triathlon, dollar for dollar. This year, they added a kayak division for those who are nervous about swimming. Top that off, I am shooting to break 2:50 in the Portage Lakes Olympic triathlon. Somewhere in all this is my 55th, (June 17th) which will likely consist of 55 minutes, swimming, 55 minutes biking, 55 minutes running. 55 Stadium Stair Climbs and 55 One Minute rope skipping with 20 seconds rest. I will likely take a Pilates Class from the Master, aka THE BRIDE. that day. Ohh, yeah, and I'll blow out 55 candles. Speaking of my Beloved, we were putting up some Christmas lights all over our Forsythia Bushes that border our gorgeous patio and the next door neighbor. I was fiddling around while connecting one string to another....

"You plug the male into the female"
"Hey now"!!!

"Thanks for coming everyone...try the veal!!!"
My hamstring is still sore and bothersome (injury not connected at all to any Christmas light plugging in..metophorically speaking, ahhh humm") I have been trying to stretch, ice it...rub it... talk bad to it....anything save calling my congressman. Still bothersome.. So I have been trying Icy Hot. which brings this question...Icy or Hot??? How does it know???

I am A Guppy.
Have graduated from mindless swim workouts to getting some intervals in. Have done some pull sets. Am now working on more kicking. In straight 100 yard sets, I have been able to go 1:45, 1:49 1:47 1:48 1:50, with 30 seconds rest. I can see some of the ability coming out. I have hit 2,700 yards tops for my workouts. Reminds me of 5 years ago, Jack Caress, who puts on the Cleveland Triathlon, invited me to do some radio work and set me up to train with Melissa Mantak., a former ITU 5-time World Cup Champ who coached from within the stable of Chris Carmichael. of course, coached the guy on the right in the photo with Melissa. You might have heard of him. Melissa was the only coach I have had. Fabulous. I had a sore foot at the time and she really got my swimming technique sharpened and helped me refine some biking skills. I recommend a coach to those who are somewhat new to the sport. Melissa runs a company called The Empowered Athlete. Check her out if you get a chance. LINK
Tomorrow, THE BRIDE has a Pilates class and I will use that time to run to North Chagrin Reservation. I want to log 2 hours of running and I am going to experiment with some GU's and different forms of hydration. I feel at the Cleveland Half Marathon, I might have semi-flamed out due to a lack of proper nutrition. So, I am gonna be my own lab rat. Finally.. the helping set of hands pertains to my next post. How a mysterious hand lifted one little boy to a second chance in life. Oh, yeah... a shout out to my southern buddie, WES, who competed in his first 70.3 recently and best to LILY, who runs the ING Ottawa Marathon this weekend.

Best to you.!!!!!

Monday, May 19, 2008


Rite Aid Half Marathon was a smashing success for this guy, on many fronts, even though the goal I was shooting for, vanished faster than one of those government 600 dollar checks.

Yes, it was raining, yes, you could see your breath, but the weather really, in my opinion was not a deterrent to a good race, or a good time.

Got to the Galleria about 6:15, hung out, stretching inside, and went up to the second level and jogged a bit. Tri-Folk Charlie bopped over and said hi. Wes Wilcox, one of the Cavaliers scouts was doing the half marathon. He was preparing to go to scout more possible opponents for the Cavaliers..(if Cavs made finals) but he had this date on his calendar and was very anxious to see what time he could do. He also told me, he is itching to get into triathlons, so I told him I will steer him to some events in and around Ohio. Maybe he and I can convince #23 to try a triathlon afterall, haha!!

Jumped into the starting line, saw DaisyDuc , and Eddie Policy. Eddie is one of my swimming buddies at Fairport Harbor and a Ironman Wisconsin finisher. Race started a few minutes late...don't know why, but off we went. I settled in with a pace group that was doing miles at approx. 8:40. I would need to maintain that to reach the 1:53 goal. Saw E-speed on west 3rd, shouting encouragement to all the racers. Man, she gets into it!!!!! Cool!!! Really appreciated seeing all the folks watching the race, it was tremendous. On West Shoreway, they were playing Johnny Cash "I walk the line" song....very funny. I wasn't walking, it was full speed ahead.

I was at mile 6 starting to fall off the pace, just a little bit, but felt I could pick it up a bit by mile ten. Didn't happen. Soon, I was averaging 9 minute miles. Was well hydrated. Saw Karen Ruth, another one of my swimming buddies on her bike, cruising up and down the course. The stretch down Detroit wore me down a little..By then, with about 3 plus miles left, I was doing the math. I needed 7:20 miles to reach 1:53. Dana Carvey's impression of Bush, Sr. came to mind. "Not gonna do it". Then, once we reached the Detroit-Superior Bridge, I just tried to maintain a "don't let the wheels come off pace" and get to the finish line. Still, the mini-flame-out cost me my goal.

Hit the finish with a time of 2:01:55. At that time, the sun popped out. One of our camera guys was there shooting all the people finish. He didn't see me come in but he shot a little footage of me eating a banana. Compelling stuff I know. I felt fine, heart rate was fine, but I probably had a somewhat unrealistic goal of 1:53. Thats Okay. Still a great race.

The day picked up very quickly as I finally got to meet Trisaratops, Jenc and TriShannon. Great to meet you guys. They all have recaps on their races at their blogs. Chatted later with Charlie and met Jack, another Cleveland Tri club member. Hope Charlie doesn't mind, I pilfered a pic from his blog. Charlie is one of the deeper thinkers in triathlon-blogdom, a folk musician and an Ironman. Wish I had a photo with the ladies..Ohh well.. My son, Patrick did the 10-k, but the crowd was so large, I just never found him. Talked to him later. He ran 43:53 for the ten K. Great Job Pat!!!! Also props to one of the guys in THE BRIDE'S pilates class. Mike won his age group for the half marathon. Way to Go!!!

I was already on fumes, as Saturday's work ended at midnight. I was up at 4:40am Sunday and would have a full day at the station, starting at 3pm.

When I got home, THE BRIDE was hoping to make a stop at the Garden Center for all the flowers for her window boxes. She needed "Kaito", her nickname for in, "Hi I want you to meet, Kaito, my man servant". Kaito would schlep the plants and flowers. She really needed it done Sunday because the planting of the flower boxes is a big deal. She makes them so gorgeous. So..Kaito got his 5 minute ice bath.. then hot shower, and 15 minutes later, we were in the greenhouse. We filled up two big carts, and I offered great advice.

"Does that pink look brilliant enough to you"?
"I think it really looks like orange"

Then, by 3pm, I was at the t.v. station, watching and recording and writing my sportscasts of the Cavs Game 7 loss, and ohh, why not throw in a Reds sweep over the Tribe for good measure. My colleague, Tony Rizzo probably had a rougher day. He had to witness the Game 7 loss in Boston . Of course, I don't think he ran 13 miles. By the time I got home last night, I was toast.

Now, the scoop on ....THE BAG. You'll recall I nearly dumped him after 15 years for a new workbag. He was despondent, even thought of falling into the lake and end it all, but I saved his life. Then, Blogger outrage convinced me to keep him on as my trusted sidekick. Rejuvenated, THE BAG began dating. And get, this..he's dating a PURSE. Some fashionista's PURSE. What a poser!!!!
And...get this....not only are they in love.......She's preggers. SHOCKING!!! Yes... they are expecting a little wallet, come the fall.

Happy Training

Sunday, May 18, 2008

I Can See My Breath

Pretty Cool Cleveland Marathon , Half Marathon and Ten K.

In more ways than just the temperature..

Recap coming, including news that THE BAG is seeing someone...

Its real gossip.

Missed my goal in the Half, but it was a great day. I'll drop some scoop on ya ASAP.


Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Thanks to all who responded to my Triathlon Transition silly little song I wrote as a take-off on Stevie Wonders "Superstition". Many said to record the song...Hummm..we'll see about that. I think it would be cool to have all the top guys and gals do a line on it..haha... But most of the fun of the blog is in the writing..the scheming....and be warned..more of this nonsense is to follow.

The Bride came home Monday morning after teaching a class in pain. She had picked up an large weight in a somewhat un-balanced fashion and now her back was screaming like a Marine Drill Instructor. Sure, a few Advils might have blurred the pain somewhat, but now it was kinda crisis time.

"Can you teach my late afternoon Pilates Class"?
"Seriously??? As in leading the class"?
"Well, I might do the cue-ing but I will need you up there to do the demonstrating"
"I haven't done one of your classes in awhile. They will surely spot an imposter". It would be like a diehard Browns fan trying to pass himself off as a Steelers fanatic"

(at this point, no further conversation is needed. Yes, I would do what my beloved wanted, and I would do it with as much enthusiasm as is humanly possible. You don't last long in a marriage if you don't buy into your loved one's needs. Yes, I would look rusty, but I would be her little Pilates aid. I would even encourage her to call me "The lovely Carol Marill" as in Bob Barker telling a contestant on "The Price is Right" to check out the new fridge that "Carol Marill" is pointing to.)

So, off we went, and yes, the class went very well. She has a great bunch of people in the class. She was even able to get down on the mat, but for the most part, she referred to me on most exercises. I went through everything and seemed to pull it off . Had there been a Yoga class before ours..(Yoga people love hot rooms), I would have been sweating more than a tax cheat during an IRS audit. But luckily the room was comfortable. Two liquid gelcaps and six rosary beads later, The Brides back seemed to improve..and thus today I am not needed to help as a Pilates aide. My career was OVER before it BEGAN!!! Hey, I do weddings and bar mitzvahs!!!

The Workouts in the past week or so have focused on getting alot of swimming in, lifting, and aside from my 12 miler on the 6th, very little running. My left foot is better, the left knee is being iced and responding. I am still on track for the Rite-Aid Half Marathon on Sunday. The goal is 1:53. Thats roughly 8:40 per mile. I will try not to get too carried away with all the adrenaline from the huge throng of runners. Todays swim was 2650 yards, the third swim workout in 8 days. Late this am, Patrick stopped over. He's doing the 10-k Sunday. We went up to North Chagrin and ran for about 55 minutes....

God Bless the engineers who designed the Hoover Dam.
Its an amazing piece of Americana. Imagine the force needed to keep back all the water??? I think of the Hoover Dam in the same way I think of my tight fitting UnderArmour shirts. Or the spandex biking shorts!!!!!!!!Ohhh the humanity!!!! Each week, I vow to be more serious about my nutrition.. Its a race against time. My weight versus the fabric.

Good luck Training!!!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


I warned you in my previous post that I would write a take-off on Stevie Wonders hit Superstition. So..sorry dear bloggers, the version is on this post...however..a quick training update...

Monday, the Bride taught at Harmony Studios at 4:45 in downtown Willoughby. I tagged along but did something impulsive.. Yes, sore left foot and all, I mapped out a route from the Studio, through Willoughby Hills, through part of North Chagrin and over to Fitworks in Richmond Heights where she was teaching a 6:45pm class. I know I had injury issues, but stupidly, I forged ahead. All went well. The total run was a whisker under 12.0 miles.. Other than a slightly sore left knee, I made it okay. Had 16 oz bottle of water. Had one Gu and bought a bottle of Gatorade at about 1 hour, 40 minutes into the run. Took 2 hours, 5 minutes without really pushing any pace. Even did 15 minutes elliptical while The Bride made human pretzels out of her clients at Fitworks.

Wednesday, I got back into a pool for my first swim workout in about 5 months. Willoughby YMCA. Did 2300 yards.. 44 minutes. Felt very strong..Had good mechanics. Felt effortless. I think I will Swim across Lake Erie. Haha.

So the work is being done, and the Cleveland Half Marathon is the IRS around mid April.
Now, first of all, heres YouTube version of Stevies Superstition. And heres my version.. but its called Triathlon Transition. .(BY TRIGUYJT)

Triathlon Transition, from water to the road
Triathlon Transition, make sure you carbo load.

13-hundred tri-bikes, hanging on their racks.
Have that Gu or a banana, expect to go the MAX.

Ohh, when your wetsuit is stuck and you can't yank it off,
you suffer.....
Tri-Transition rules the day.

Ohh Triathlon Transition, can screw up your race plans.
Forget your chip or helmet, or neglect to use the can.

Keep it in a daydream
Kona's where we belong.

You had better conserve heart beats,
you've got to bike real long,

But when you forget somethings, it can blow up all your plans,
then you suffer...
Tri-Transition has the last say, yeh yeh.

Oooh Triathlon Transition, volunteers point the way,
Family wants some pictures, but tell em you can't stay.

13-hundred tri-bikes..ridden hard and put away wet...
Several hours of fluid loss, its your toughest challenge yet.

So, when you ingest weird things that your stomach hadn't planned,
you suffer...
Tri-Transition rules the day...... yeah-ehhh
*** ****************************
Should I copyright this...haha

Sunday, May 4, 2008


Less than 2 weeks til the Cleveland half marathon. Hope to see some of our blogging buds there. Past couple days, I have had a little discomfort on the instep of my left foot.
3 reasons for it.
1. Running shoes and dress shoes a bit tight in that area.
2. Upped mileage a bit too much
3. Back away from the buffet J.T.?

I am easing up just a little bit..icing and also getting to the pool. However, I am not looking for sympathy.don't whip out your violins..unless of course you happen to be this woman..haha.
Miri Ben-Ari. She's the stunningly gorgeous hip hop violinist.
Before a Cavs Wizards playoff game, I was doing a live shot from the "Q" and she was going through rehearsal. WOW!! blew me away. She performed at halftime...(for a taste of her talent, CLICK here). Of course, I showed how worldly I am when, after the game, I was walking down a hallway after getting interviews in the Cavs lockeroom and she was leaving the arena with her p.r. people. Here is ..word for word, our conversation.

That in depth conversation will be expanded soon to be a feature length movie...haha

I am in search of the Holy Grail of pace's. Eric Clapton. The legendary song, Layla is just over 7 minutes long. I want to be able to fire up that song and cover a mile before its done. I don't know that I could do a 5k race and average that pace, but I am working on it. Did 3 interval treadmill workouts in the past 10 days. On one of them, I busted out 2 different paces of 7:18 at the top of a ladder of intervals. The Catch?? I only managed 2 different segments of 2 minutes each at that pace. Its coming.
Finally, its not surprising to me, that two of my favorite musical artists are Stevie Wonder ... and Andrea Bocelli. Both, as you know, are blind. Its wonderful, how their talents are wonderfully heightened to seemingly make up for the lack of sight. Stevie is as inventive as any musician in history and Bocelli just totally blows me away. Imagine how great it was for me to hear the pair team up on Bocelli's Amore cd. Here is the song, Canzoni Stonate. (Link to You Tube) It means "Songs out of Tune" which just cracks me up.
Part of the lyrics
If you close your eyes
you might hear us even from there
Songs of love
That still make your heart feel good
We almost always talk
Sometimes not, sometimes not

Wonder's harmonica playfully accompanies Bocelli's strong voice and later in the song, Stevie vocalizes as well. When I first heard them together, I got misty eyed. I kid you not. You don't have to search for heaven in the skies...its right here before your eyes. Sighted or Not. Its like faith. You don't have to see it to believe it. Its in your heart.
Finally, Stevies hit Superstition needs some new lyrics, courtesy of triguyjt. Get ready for "Triathlon Transition" future posts. Happy Training!!