Thursday, December 27, 2012

Best Christmas Gift...

Merry Christmas!!! We had a wonderful holiday... until we got food poisoning at midnight on Christmas night (hey... silver lining on a miserable day... I lost between 5-7 pounds that day!) I will share some photos shortly, but I wanted to share the most amazing gift that Jeff gave me for Christmas.

Triathlons cost a lot of money... entry fees, equipment, shoot... just the GU and Cliff Blocks to get me through my workouts cost a small fortune.  Money is getting tight, and with the "Fiscal Cliff" looming, my triathlon costs could very easily become "deleted discretionary spending line items" in our family budget.  It means so much to know that Jeff feels as strongly about the importance of my training/weight loss/confidence to him... as it does to me... then again... he is reaping the benefits... isn't he... :-)

This is the main gift I received from Jeff this year... (and I LOVE the Tri Santa!)...

Thank you, my sweet husband!  I look forward to making "the guy that sleeps next to me" proud this race season!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

...remembering the day that changed our lives...

December 16th is a day that will never be forgotten in our family... the day Jeff was diagnosed with cancer.

The journey that we started 8 years ago changed our lives... there were really, really bad and dark times... but there were also very uplifting, loving, and hysterically funny times. There were moments that we didn't think it could get any worse, followed almost immediatly by a wink, or a gentle hand squeeze, or the look that Jeff and I give each other when nobody else exists in the world... it is just us... together... in perfect love... knowing that things would be alright.

Several years ago I wrote about the first few hours after diagnosis... I believe this is the sixth year in a row I have posted this special story.   Jeff and I have been overwhelmed with the touching comments that so many of you send each year... so as long as you enjoy and/or are touched by our story, I will continue this annual tradition.

This story is Dedicated to my love,

my Sweetheart, my best friend,

my hero, my husband, Jeff.

Snickerdoodles, peanut butter, sugar cookies and spritz cookies…that should finish off our holiday baking. Go on a city drive of Christmas lights. Buy a pair of jeans to match the pink sweater for Jessica. Spend an afternoon in Julian and get hot apple cider. Finish wrapping gifts.

It was December 16th, 2004 and a week before Christmas. I was sitting in the waiting area of the Gastroenterology Department of Scripps Green Hospital writing my list of last minute Christmas ‘To Dos.’ Anna Grace, then six months old, was waiting with me for Daddy to be done with his colonoscopy. Jeff hadn’t been feeling well and hadn’t been eating very much. As he was preparing for the colonoscopy, he told me he was craving a Double-Double from In-N-Out. I promised I would take him there as soon as his procedure was over.

“Mrs. Locher?” Dr. Nodurft was standing in front of me. “May I have a word with you?”

He guided me through a door that led to the examination rooms. I walked down the hallway, pushing Anna’s stroller in front of me. All morning, the nurses that walked by Anna had stopped and made some comment about how cute she was or how happy. There were two nurses standing in the doorway of an exam room, waiting for Anna’s stroller to pass by in the little hallway. This time the nurses didn’t look at Anna. They looked me in the eye. They didn’t smile. They looked down at the floor. For a split second, things started moving in slow motion. Could there be a problem with Jeff? As the cold fingers of dread started twisting in my stomach, I calmly reminded myself that Jeff was 44 years old, in great health, and in good shape. I knew I was being led to the transition room where my slightly drugged up husband would be waiting for me, right? Everything would be fine! Everything would be fine!

I wasn’t led to the transition room, but a small exam room. There wasn’t room for the stroller, so I left it outside and carried Anna in. Dr. Nodurft entered the room with us and another doctor followed behind us. The room seemed to be filled by the exam table and I remember how white the paper liner looked on the table. Did I say the room was small? That feeling of slow motion was starting again and I had a bad feeling. There couldn’t possibly be anything wrong with Jeff. Don’t doctors give you bad news in their private office, or in a family waiting room…or in a private, small exam room…

NO! I was cuddling our beautiful baby girl…Jeff waited so long to become a Daddy…nothing could stop him from watching his children grow up…from walking his daughters down the aisle…to watching his son become a father and passing the family name to the next generation…why were they just standing there? But, I knew the answer, didn’t I!?

“As you know, your husband was here today for a colonoscopy. He has been bleeding internally and we needed to find the source of the blood. We found a tumor…” I tried to concentrate on the next words coming from Jeff’s doctor, but I seem to have gone deaf.

“I guess I won’t be taking Jeff to In-N-Out.” I told the doctor about my earlier promise. I smiled and was silent. He seemed to know that I needed a moment to process reality.

I was standing there, holding Anna. I was dizzy and darkness was creeping in from the sides of my eyes. Shouldn’t the doctor take Anna from me so I don’t drop her? I sat down in the only chair in the room.

I knew what my next question was going to be, but how would I ask it? I started my question several times, but only uttered a few disconnected words… “Is…will…it’s not…he can’t be…Jeff is not terminal…” came out more as a shaky statement than a question.

Dr. Nodurft explained we wouldn’t know anything without more tests and until the pathology was completed on the specimen that would be collected during surgery. We talked a bit more and I was told that Jeff was still out and wouldn’t be ready to see me for awhile. The good doctor suggested a nice, quiet spot outside by the reflection pond where I could make some phone calls. He assured me he would come get me when Jeff was awake and ready for a visit.

I sat down by the pond. Nobody was around but the coffee cart barista. I don’t know what the temperature was, but I was cold and shivering. Anna was so quiet…almost as if she knew what was happening. She just looked at me as tears flowed down my face.

I remember thinking of a line from one of my favorite TV shows, "Lost." Jack, the young doctor character, explained that in order to deal with the emotional situations related to his work, he would allow himself to give into his fear/pain/grief for a count of ten. Then he would take a deep breath and concentrate on what had to be done to rectify the situation. I slowly counted to 10, took that all important deep breath and called my Mom.


“Mom?” I could barely get the word out.

“What’s going on?” Her voice was shaking by the end of her question. She knew where I was.

“They found cancer…” came out in one gush of breath, as if I had been punched in the stomach.

Mom was sobbing by the time she finished her “Oh my God!”

I gave her the limited information that I had. “They don’t know how bad…Jeff is being admitted…surgery tomorrow…Jeff doesn’t know yet…”

I guess Mom knew the “10-second Fear Rule” because she was quickly down to business.

“I will call your Dad and get him home…”

“You don’t have to pull him out of work,” I inserted because I knew Dad had used all his vacation time for the year.

“I can tell you that he will not be able to work after he hears this news. I will pack while he gets home and we will be there as soon as possible.” She already had a plan for getting Anna from me at the hospital, picking up Jessica and Christian from school, and staying at our house with the kids as long as we needed. Isn’t that what Moms do best? They take care of business when their kids need them!

The next call was to our church. I knew Jeff would want Father Jim to pray with us before the surgery. I requested Jeff be added to the parish prayer chain. Both requests were granted.

Next, Jeff’s Dad. The receptionist was telling me Jeff’s Dad was out of the office just as Jeff’s doctor walked up. “Jeff is awake and ready to see you.” I would track down Jeff’s Dad after I had a chance to see Jeff.

Anna and I were led to the transition room. I knew my eyes were swollen from crying, but my “10-seconds of Fear” were over (actually, by that time, I had gone through many, many 10-second counts) and I was going to be strong for my incredible husband.

I could hear the beeping of the medical machines from all the patients hiding behind their privacy curtains. I could hear the nurses’ shoes squeaking on the floor. I could smell that unmistakable scent of “hospital.” Our eyes met. I was strong. He looked like he was still out of it. Everything else faded away. My grasp tightened on Anna’s stroller. There was a long pause, smiles from both of us, and almost simultaneously we both said, “I guess we’re not going to In-N-Out.” He had been told. He reached for my hand. Our grasp was strong. Neither of us let go. So many questions. Not many answers. No guarantees. Yet, we both felt a slight feeling of calm, serenity, peace. The feeling was buried by the fear and sadness and questions and that “spiraling out of control” feeling, but it was there. You can call it what you want…denial, hope, naiveté…I call it faith. No matter how small that pinprick of a feeling was, we knew everything was going to be okay. Looking back, I can pinpoint that moment, that first look and coming together of husband and wife during a life-altering situation, as the moment that God stopped walking with us, but gathered us in His protective arms and carried us. Together.

Ironically, as I finish writing this story, I am sitting in a waiting room. Anna is asleep in her stroller. It is one year later and Jeff is having his first colonoscopy since going through surgery to remove the tumor, which came with a foot of large intestine, some small intestine, his appendix and 29 lymph nodes. He was diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer, has endured six months of chemotherapy, and two additional surgeries. He is still dealing with side effects from the chemo, but we know those will fade one day soon.

“You can come in now.” The nurse is standing at the recovery room door. I had been pretty calm until this moment. I thank the nurse and start pushing Anna toward the door. The nurse is smiling at me and commenting on how cute Anna is. Although I smile back, I think I have stopped breathing.

I hear machines beeping, nurses’ shoes squeaking on the floor, and recognize that antiseptic smell. There are five nurses walking around the room. They all smile at me and make cute comments about Anna. Jeff’s nurse leads me to his bedside. He appears to be asleep.

Jeff’s nurse hands me the report from Dr. Nodurft. The first thing I see is a happy face. The report reads, “Well done, Mr. Locher! Your colon is perfectly normal! Great news. Next colonoscopy is recommended in three years. Let me know when you get back to cycling and we should go sometime!”

A single tear is rolling down my face. “Thank God! Jeff is going to be fine!,” I enthusiastically say to the nurse. I look over at Jeff…he hasn’t moved…his eyes are closed… and he is smiling.

I love you, my sweet husband!  Here's to another, wonderful, cancer free year!

Monday, December 10, 2012

... Best in San Diego...

... according to KOZ Events, I won the 2012 First Place Title for the San Diego Triathlon Points Series, in the Athena 40+ category.  Last night Jeff and I attended the awards dinner for the annual points series and had such a wonderful evening.  Sitting in a room with the best triathletes in the San Diego series was sooooooo incredibly inspirational.  We had a chance to meet several of the other winners and hear their stories, because everyone that does a triathlon has a story. 
At our table was "Bill."  He changed age groups mid season and won awards for the 70-74 and the 75-79 age group categories.  He started doing triathlons as his 65th birthday present because AARP sent him some information about a "senior only triathlon."  He figured the fact that it fell on his birthday was a sign, and here he is... 10 years later and racing in 8-10 triathlons a year.

I also met "Troy" who won the 50-54 age group title... and is about to compete at Ironman Cabo San Lucas... and he went to Mission Viejo High School at the same time Jeff was there... what a small world.
Seeing triathaletes from 12 years old to 85+ was unbelievable and a reminder that all you have to do is put your mind to it and YOU CAN DO IT... yes, I must admit that being a triathlete is not only time consuming, but takes a hit out of your wallet... after all, you need equipment for (3) different sports (and all the fun stuff that goes with it!)  At the end of the day, it didn't matter that I was an Athena last night... I was a local triathlon winner and I could not be more proud and excited about 2013... oh, and Jeff... yeah... he was glowing, too! :-) 
Looks like almost everyone from last night is heading to La Quinta for the Desert International in March... I already have my reservations... and THIS YEAR... I will stand on that podium (as I try as hard as I can to block last year's hydration malfunction!)  Here we go!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Life Reset - Step 1 - Reflect and Inspiration...

22 years ago, I had my first child, and 20 years ago, my second...

14 years ago, my first marriage ended... and my life reset...

11 years ago, I married the most amazing man... and my life reset...

10 years ago we bought our first house, 9 years ago Jeff adopted Jessica and Chris, 8 years ago I was able to stay home from work and we had Anna... and life continued to reset..

7 years ago, Jeff was diagnosed with cancer... RESET...

2 years ago I started a journey called, "Becoming My Husband's Girlfriend, Again"... and reset...

The days that make up all the rest of our time has been full of ups and downs, laughter and tears, challenges and triumps....

... now, after 8 years at home, I have been back to work for 10 months now... running Jeff's office.  The past 10 months has been a total blur...long hours, working 6-7 days a week, a total sacrafice of time for our friends, rest time, time for the kids, resigning from all but two volunteer responsiblities... heck... I barely have time to do the laundry and make dinner before collapsing in bed and getting back up at the crack of dawn to do it all again.

I've been thinking about this post for awhile because the whole goal of this blog was to take the extra time to get my self confidence back... get to the gym and watch my weight... do the fun stuff with my family and husband that was lost in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  This was much easier to do when I was a stay at home mom and had the extra time to plan special surprises, keep the house clean, keep up with the kids, plan dinners, workouts, plan... anything...

For most of the past year, I have felt that our life was totally out of control... we were reacting only... and so much was being missed... and I... AM... DONE... WITH... THAT!  Time for a SELF IMPOSED reset of our lives!


Reflect - Done above!  Looking back at the struggles and triumps of our past reminds us that we have made it through a lot... both good and bad... but whatever struggle we are going through at the moment seems like it is the worst ever... BECAUSE we are going through it at the moment.  Divorce and cancer were the most horrible times in my life... I made it through that and will make it through this, too.

Inspiration - I needed to reset the inspiration to help me move forward in a possitive and successful way.  Here are my current inspirations...

Paula - She was a member of my "Weight Loss Challenge" group in 2012.
She wanted to give herself a special 40th birthday gift - weight loss and health.
She has since lost 50 pounds and is now training others (including me)
to reach their goals... and looking fine, I must say!
Matt - A member of our Palomar YMCA Tri Team - he completed his
first sprint trialthon - the Mission Bay in October 2011... and just completed
his first 70.3 (half Ironman)... at the Superseal exactly 1 year later... AND with
a weight loss of over 50 pounds... I call him "Superman!"
Tracey and Lance Smith - we met this wonderful couple when
Chris dated their daughter, Kendra.  They own a very successful Monavie business,
 and do it with hard work and commitment.  But what is even
more inspirational to me is the way they live their lives.  You can not
find a better couple to define, "Being My Husband's Girlfriend" and vica versa,
and parents that raise humble kids... as they say, "You are broke kids with rich parents.
Whatever you achieve or become is based on who you are and what you do,
not based on what we have accomplished."
Every beautiful day is an inspiration...

Seriously... TOTAL inspiration!  If this awesome kid can do
it... my weight can't stop me as I DO IT!
My Family inspires me... as a parent, there is nothing more inspirational
than the health and happiness of your kids.
My sweet husband... enough said!

And you know what... I... AM... MY... OWN... INSPIRATION!  At the top I was 250 pounds... although I have made it down to 195, I and am 205 today... I'm still 45 pounds down.  I know what I have to do... and am inspired by my journey to keep going...

I have a lot of work to do to get this family and journey back on track.  Look forward to several more posts... because there is NOTHING more important that family, love, and my sweet husband! 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

... for a friend...

Palomar YMCA Triathletes... Fitness Director Briony... 70.3 Superman Matt, The Awesome Laura,
Athena Tri Champ Me, and Beautiful Tri Becki... sweaty and feeling great!
The short and sweet of it...

... my very first trainer at the Palomar YMCA was Laura Velasco...

... she and her husband, Alfredo, became good friends of ours...

... they have both inspired, supported, and competed with me in triathlons for the past 3 years...

... staging and waiting for the group to arrive so we can  "flash mob"
Laura's Bootcamp class...
... and today, when they needed support, there was a group that showed up at Laura's Bootcamp class in 80's gear... to put a smile... and well earned tear or two... on Laura's face.

Laura... you are our friend... our trainer... you have yelled at us... and inspired us... and told us that WE CAN based only on the fact that you believe in us. 

I've lost almost 60 pounds because of you...

... when a friend challenged me to do a sprint triathlon you told me I could...

... and when I wanted to keep doing sprints, you told me I had moved on and was ready for more...

... I moved on to my first international distance triathlon...

... all because YOU believed in ME...

... two of my coaches in the foam "Pit of Hell!"  Have fun getting out... ;-)
... we all LOVE you... and believe in you and Alfredo!

There is NOTHING better than waking up in the dark...
... getting dressed up in 80's gear...
... and sweating up a storm for a friend!
... and one of these days...

... I'm going to KICK YOUR RACE BUTT!!!  ;-)

... fair warning... because you told me I could do ANYTHING!... 
... and I plan to do just that!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Mission Bay Triathlon 2012 - Race Report

... third year at Mission Bay, and my race is STILL all over the board! 

2010 - too much water and I walked the run... 1:45:55

2011 - AWESOME race - all felt great... 1ST PLACE in 1:21:07

2012 - (3) things that went wrong - but no excuses... 2ND PLACE in 1:22:16

I have been thinking a lot about what I was going to write about this race.  I've always been honest with you about my weight loss, confidence, and reports on how things are going, and after a few days of reflection, I need to be honest about this race... and other stuff...

Work has taken over my life and everything else has suffered... I'm not being my husband's girlfriend, I'm not being patient with my kids, and I'm not properly training to reach my goals. 

I'm going to leave that short, but important, admission sit there at the moment as just putting it out there is forcing me to face the music and make some changes.

While there are things that need to be changed to bring my priorities back in line, I would like to share this race... I trained hard...Jeff supported me every step of the way... and he and Anna got up at 4AM to cheer me on... and... there is a new Athena 40+ champ that needs a big time shout out! :-)

As always... the photos are going to tell the story...
Here we go... early morning, but 10 minutes to the start...
The only part of my race that I cut...
... my swim was awesome!
A photo is worth 1,000 words... see that look on my face... I just saw the marking
on the calf of this gal in front of me... she was my competition, and I knew she won...
I had researched the gals in my category, and I knew they were all faster runners
than me... Nicol and I crossed the bike finish together and I told her she was
going to win our race.  Long story short... she also had been watching me, and knew
she had to keep my wheel on the bike to win the race.  I LOVE the fact that I am
not the only one that follows the competition... :-)
I was feeling OK at the start of the run,
but right here I'm telling Jeff, "#1 is right in
front of me... she's RIGHT THERE!"

I already knew that I was in 2nd place, and I did not want anyone
to sneak up on me at the finish... so I SPRINTED to the line! (Coach Laura
always says, "You have to finish one way or the other, you may as well

Me with 1st place winner, Nicol Roemer... AWESOME!
For Nicol, this is a destination race for her and her husband (and nephew this year!)
Nicol is AWESOME, and although I'm going to have to beat her next time,
I look forward to competing with this fantastic gal!

Good day... bad day... it doesn't matter... MAKE... YOUR... GOALS... HAPPEN!  I might not have won this race, but I got my butt out of bed... trained... and took 2nd place!  What did you do to make your goals happen today?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Looking Back... and Looking Ahead... MISSION BAY TRIATHLON!

Big difference in weight between 2010-2011.. YES!
... this year, the weight numbers are the same...
... but I can't wait to see how weight training has changed my result!!!

I had my first flutters of nerves today as I was thinking about the race this weekend.  This is the 3rd year that I have competed in this race, but my race history has been all over the board!  2010... I drank too much water in T-2 and I had to WALK the run due to cramps... 2011... I cut about 25 minutes off my time and took my VERY FIRST 1st place category win! ... and now 2012...

I am ready...

... and my training has been solid...

... but now I have (and my friends and family have) expectations that I'm going to place again...

... and I know, there are so many factors when racing... to date, my biggest issue has been hydration... too much or not enough.  There are also mechanicals and injury and illness and... well... add in female issues and we gals have "things" we have to conquer over and above the race course!

I have added my Race Reports from the 2011 and 2010 Mission Bay Triathlon races below.  Just reading through them again has those nervous butterflies moving like CRAZY!  But it is sooooooo good to look back... to see what I have done in the past... to see where I was so confident based on my weight loss and/or my training and to see how far I've come!  EVERY time that I race I go FULL OUT... and every race is in a moment in time... and I LOVE watching the overall SUCCESS... because that is what it is... SUCCESS... I'm getting my butt out of bed and training and being healthy and I'm going to KICK MY OWN RECORD'S ASS!!! (sorry for the swearing, Mom and Dad...)

Make everyday count!

Make your goals... REALITY!!!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Mission Bay in T-2 Weeks and Photos!

Here we go again... doing a countdown to a race.  March through October seems to follow the pattern... countdown to a race... race... set new training schedule... countdown to a race... race... that is what I call "Tri Season!"

2 weeks from today is my last race of the season, and one of my favorites - the Mission Bay Triathlon.  This will be my 3rd year doing this long established sprint tri and I am really looking forward to this distance!  This year, I completed (2) international distance tris and a metric century and I've been thinking a lot about doing this sprint distance race while doing my training for the past few months.

While doing benchmarks for the international distance races,  I was often frustrated with myself because I found that after months and months of training, my splits for my swim, run and bike were the same as my sprint splits.  For example... my 500 meter swim benchmark was 10 minutes and my 1,000 meter benchmark was 20 minutes.  My 3 mile run benchmark was 30 minutes and my 6 mile benchmark was 60 minutes.  I thought, "What the HECK!?"  I've done all this training and I can't even speed up my split times?  Then a good friend brought be back to the real world... "Tracey, you have doubled your distance and ARE STILL able to pace each mile as if they were sprint distances!  Most people would slow as they add on miles, but you are pushing on, with consistent splits, no matter how many extra miles you are adding!" 

So I went with that as I competed in my first international distance tris this year and felt pretty good.  Of course, I want to speed up my race, but that is what I will concentrate on during this off season.  Back to my Mission Bay training... I expected my training would once again, meet those benchmarks that I have been hitting all year... BUT... this time, when I lowered my distances back to the sprint distances... MY BENCHMARK TIMES HAVE ALL DECREASED... and pretty significantly!  When triathletes consider a 30 second cut from their previous years' time a huge victory, I am planning for a 10 MINUTE cut this year!  And I'm ON TRACK to make that GOAL HAPPEN!  Wooo Hoooo!!!

Onto the photos... I'm not going to lie... fitting in the training and eating properly has been very difficult since going back to work in February... and since the San Diego International in June, my workouts are averaging only (4) times per week. (AUGH!)

198.8 pounds
202.0 pounds

I've continued with my small group weight/cardio training twice per week... my race times are getting faster and faster... and although I've put on 3 pounds in the past 7 weeks, my size 12 clothes (down from size 20) are still fitting me just fine!  This is why if you are going to start on a weight loss journey, YOU HAVE TO TAKE PHOTOS!  I have put this off for almost 2 months and... from what I see, I'm looking better now than I did 7 weeks ago!

The numbers on the scale are just part of your personal benchmark.  Take the photos.  Take your measurements.  Feel how your clothes fit.  Just as I was so obsessed... and then depressed... about my training benchmark numbers, I was getting stronger and faster and didn't even know it!

Set your goals.

Record your benchmarks.

And CELEBRATE your success!!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Cool Breeze Century 2012!

So much drama... so little time...
Let's get right to the important stuff... thanks to friends Dave and Mari who live by the start of the Cool Breeze (they are at Cal State Channel Islands, 30 minutes from the start of the century), and with about a 36 hour notice, they helped us out so that I could ride with Jeff and Dan (another frat brother that we haven't seen in 3 years!).  We decided to do the metric century (about 60 miles instead of 100 miles) for a variety of reasons, and were THRILLED that we took the metric, rode our hearts out, and had trained well enough that we all felt great after the ride and were able to enjoy our annual BBQ and catch up with our friends that evening!

... so let's chat about weight, shall we...
Me at 200.0 pounds at the 2011 Cool Breeze...
Me at 200.6 pounds at the 2012 Cool Breeze... 1 year later and 1/2 pound up...
weight training is doing the trick!  WOOO HOOOO!!!
It has been a year and no weight change... and I not concerned.  Sure, I still have the goal of "Size 9" to meet, but I have lost 50 pounds, held it off for a year, and although my weight numbers haven't changed, my clothes sizes sure have!  I am now wearing a regular size large in tops and size 12 in bottoms... HOLY COW!  Coming from a size 20, I am so close to my goal... and keeping it off is just another "bene" in the "I can do it" column!

Next up... the Mission Bay Triathlon... in 6 weeks...

Sunday, July 29, 2012

1st Photos in 2.5 months...

Let's get right to it, shall we...

Yes, I've gained 1.8 pounds in the past 7 weeks... however...

September 5, 2011
199.8 pounds
Almost a year later...
198.8 pounds
In the past year, I haven't lost any numbers... except INCHES!  You can see it in my belly... in my back... and I can feel it in my arms!  I started "Boot Camp Weight Training" in a small group, which includes TRX, cardio weights, boot camp... in the past 4 months I have been training with Paula, I haven't been through the same workout twice!  I've hit the point where the numbers on the scale, although still important, are not the main story.  With the weight training, I'm losing inches, fitting in my clothes and looking much better.  My goal now is to get into - and be comfortable - in a size 9.  I've already gone from size 20 to 12... I'm getting closer and closer!!!  Here are the changes in my inches in the past year...

Right upper arm...     13.25" to 13.00"
Left upper arm...        13.00" to 12.00"
Bust...                         44.75" to 44.00"
Chest...                       38.00" to 38.00"
                                       Waist...                        38.50" to 39.25" (huh?)                            
Hips...                         43.75" to 44.00"
Right Thigh...             22.50" to 22.25"
Left Thigh...               22.25" to 21.50"
Right Calf...               16.00" to 15.75"
Left Calf...                 16.00" to 15.50"

The overall journey takes time.  I hope that sharing my journey shows that.  Keep working.  Follow your journey.  And you will reach your goals!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Summer catch up...

As you may know, my daily schedule since going back to work consists of... up at 4:45AM to the gym to train... go to work... eat and sleep... 6 days a week... and try to fit in everything else on Saturdays.  I will be posting new weight photos on Sunday and will share what has happened in the past 2 months at that time.   I've already shared the San Diego International Triathlon and our visit to "Wicked..."  For now, I wanted to share some of the down time that we have enjoyed since the end of the school year...

There are a few perks to being PTA President, and hosting Charger #29, Mr.
Shareece Wright, who volunteered his time to support our jog-a-thon, our
school and our 5th graders on promotion day was TOTALLY one of them! 
And I have to say, he is AWESOME... dedicated to helping his community
and specifically troubled teens.  What a pleasure to chat with him!!!
Anna's 8th "Monster High" Birthday party and sleepover.  Costumes,
scavenger hunt and the skull pinata were just a bit of the fun!
Jeff and Jessica fighing over some of the
pinata candy...
Ice cream pies for desert... devilishly delicious...
Campland on the Bay - Mission Bay, San Diego!  A family
camping vacation destination for the past 20 years.  Jeff and Anna
with Uncle John and cousin Sarah.
My sister, Mary and her family... Matthew, Sarah and John. Love you!!!
That is Anna floating in the "Charger Baby" on the left...
... and Daddy is about to CANNONBALL!  And, no...
Jeff is not a farmer... ;-)
Our favorite campsite (F9)... right on the bay...
24 hours of vacation bliss!
 No matter how busy you are, you must make your family and your husband THE priority.  I admit, I'm struggling to make that happen these days... who ever thought "making time" for fun would be so hard...?  See you on Sunday with new photos...

Monday, July 9, 2012

"Wicked" Afternoon...

Our sweet bug... and her darling Daddy!
We finally enjoyed a fun afternoon... I only had to work in the morning and the early evening, but the middle of the day was AWESOME! :-)  Anna is TOTALLY into musicals at the moment.  "Phantom of the Opera" is her favorite show and she can recited almost every line and sing every song.  So... for her birthday a few weeks ago, we found out that "Wicked" was playing at the Civic Center in San Diego and decided we had to take her to see her first big production.  We took her to see the Russian Ballet perform "The Nutcracker" a few years ago and, even at that young age, she loved it.

In the lobby after the show.
Of course, the performance was amazing!  Although it was a Sunday matinée, we still made a big deal about dressing up... we pre-ordered our intermission drinks and snacks and arrived to find a table reserved for "J. Locher..." with our treats perfectly laid out for us... and were giggling to ourselves as Anna chatted away in the backseat on the way home about her favorite scenes, songs, and details of the show.

We "Couldn't be Happier" to enjoy this "Popular" show with our little bug that "Dances Through Life" by "Defying Gravity" and lifts our spirits every day, "For Good!" :-)  (sorry... I couldn't resist!)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

San Diego International Triathlon - WOOO HOOO!

Back at home and #1... see those "dirty" spots on my shorts?  Those are salt deposits...
at the end of the race, I had so many salt crystals on my skin that
Anna said I was wearing "gliltter!" :-)
WHAT... A... DAY!  Let's start out with the BIG NEWS... I TOOK 1ST PLACE IN MY CATEGORY (AND, came in faster than the winner of the under 40 Athenas!)... which means that I was the FASTEST BIG GAL... of any age... at today's race!!!
For those of you that want the full story, here we go!

My day started at 3AM... up... shower... take in calories (which I usually have to choke down because the last thing I want to do at 3AM is eat breakfast... not to mention the nerves), re-check my transition bag, hydrate, and the all important 1st bathroom "movement..."

We parked about 1 mile away from the transition area at 5:30AM... and I found out that I would be racking AND swimming with the men (more to come on this.)  Transition set up was incredibly relaxed, which was a surprise because this is where I usually start to freak myself out.  After my epic bonk at my first international tri in March, I thought this was a good start to the day!
Another bathroom stop (actually 2) and it was time for a quick swim and on to the start.  From here, I think I need to let the photos tell the story...

Briony and me about to warm up...
funny thing... the rolls you see
are from my short and shorts... unlike...
...not even 2 years ago, my first "wetsuit tri"
... those rolls are me (sadly)... and almost
a 50 pound difference!

My swim wave... swimming with the men was a strugle... they have bigger
hands to hit you with and bigger bodies to swim over you.  All that being
said, this was my most "comfortable" swim (if you can say that for a tri swim)
I was in the top half of this field, finishing almost 4 MINUTES faster than
my training!!!! WOOO HOOO!
Getting out of the water... I'm always surprised how many people finish
after me at the swim... even all those guys... :-)
From the swim to the bike... I was racked with the guys... and look how many
 of them were still there (or not yet there) as I head out of transition!
I'm coming to the downhill to the dismount of the bike... SERIOUSLY...
for someone that is afraid of the downhill, I'm doing pretty good!
SERIOUSLY... my coach and awesome friend, Laura,
started 20 minutes behind me.  I knew I could hold her off
during the swim, and perhaps within a few minutes of
the bike, but she is a RUNNER!  I knew she would catch me
on the run... but I didn't know I would hold her off until the
finish... where she caught me and although I was DONE,
she asked me "what I had left."  I told her that I was done
a mile ago... she said she wanted to cross the finish we me...
... and I ran as hard as I could...
... and I finished with my coach...
(yes... insert happy tears here!) 
Our Palomar YMCA Tri Club... Briony (Fitness Director), me, Laura (my
original weight loss coach and friend), Alfredo (Director of our Y and
inspiration), and Matt... fellow member and my 100% inspiration... Matt,
you are a ROCK STAR!
I was (just a little) excited that I took 1st place for the Athenas...
and having our Y team there cheering for me...
(Seuiously, who cares if I looked like a dork... I just took FIRST PLACE
in an International Triathlon!!!
I was SHOCKED how many people were following my journey and emailing, Facebooking, texting to see how I was doing.  It doesn't matter how much you weigh... or how out of shape you are... tomorrow is another day!  Make it the first day of something AWESOME!