Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Tour of California - Mt. Baldy Stage 7

Jeff had an idea... a CRAZY and WONDERFUL idea...
He was going to ride his bike up one of the toughest climbs of a
professional tour... pulling Anna on her attached bike... AND a fully
loaded trailer with stuff to watch the finish...
Do you SEE the rocks under the bike wheels that are protecting the
bikes from crashing down the hill on this BIG GRADE!?
We should have known better...
It might have taken me a week and a half to post about the Tour, but here we go!  You might know that Jeff is a HUGE cycling fan (and I have been since I met Jeff) and we have travelled to a few stages each year of the Tour of California (except the last 2 years since they changed the date to May which conflicted with Grad Nite).  We were THRILLED to have a chance to watch a mountain top finish of the Tour this year (and to take a much needed day off work) AND to ride the last few miles up the climb on our bikes a few hours before the pros came through.

As I love to do, I am going to let the photos share the story of this fun day (a day that before I lost this weight would not have been possible... so glad to be a part of my family fun and history once again!)...

Let's just say that in between the last photo and this one, Jeff was helped/pushed
around each switchback by fans who thought he was crazy to ride with this much
weight, but impressed that he was going for it... until God finally said, "ENOUGH!"
and popped one of the trailer tires... we had to take it off and park it on the side
of the road... (thank you, God!)
Here, we were enjoying the very quiet stage fair since the only people that could
make it this far had to ride up on bike!!!  And we made it!!!
"Breakaway from Cancer" booth - Anna proudly wore a temporary tatoo for
Jeff... "I love a Survivor!"
Jeff and Anna at the festival... and the JUMBO-TRON
to watch the coverage behind them.
Anna and I opposite Jeff at the festival... YES, Jeff and I shared a beer up
here... and YES... it was one of those awesome and earned beers!
Of course we wrote on the road to cheer on the coming pro riders...
and a pretty cool photo from our spot at the 4KM marker!
Yes, there are lots of dedicated fans that dress
up and follow the Tour.  This guy is one of our
favorites, so when he decided to set up camp next to
our van and run with the racers right in front of us, we
were thrilled (I know, we are weird!)
Here he goes... doing what he does best...
showing his American spirit with all the riders!
CHRIS HORNER!!! WOOO HOOO! One of our American superstars!
BIG GEORGE HINCAPE!!!  One of our FAVORITES in professional cycling!!!
We were cheering and shouting for every rider!!!
REALLY...?  We just rode up this hill... and you just did like 100 miles BEFORE
hitting this hill... and you are chatting and drinking soda... Pros, huh!? :-)
Here comes the rest of the pelton... WOW!
What a fantastic day... and the fact that I was able to ride up this climb with Jeff and share this memory... AWESOME!!!  :-)

Friday, May 18, 2012

I'm TRX'ing, Baby...!

I've posted that I started small group training as I needed to add strength training to my schedule.  My trainer, Paula, always has something different for us... which I LOVE... because I really don't like strength training.  It is usually monotonous exercises that are hard to do on your own at 6AM.  I need someone to put me through hell twice a week, which Paula does very well! :-)
We did another GREAT workout today that included some TRX training.  Paula had us doing some pretty serious exercises and some that I hadn't done before.  She was impressed with the growth I've shown in the past few weeks and started taking workout photos... which I thought would be GREAT here. 

I'm still on a journey... I've come a long way, but still have a long way to go.  I love the intensity of these photos, but look forward to the day I'm this intense... and 30 more pounds down! :-)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Amazing weekend... and finally, PHOTOS!

204.6 pounds
197 pounds

Yes, Dad... it has been 5 weeks since I've posted photos.  And after mysteriously losing weight after going back to work, the weight seemed to find it's way back.  I'm going through so many changes... back to work... LONG work hours... up at 5AM to get to the gym... starting small group weight training for the first time... working weekends... trying to find time for the most basic family responsibilities... and the guilt that goes along with all of that.

In the past 5 weeks, I went from 194.6 to 203... about a 9 pound weight gain.  Yeah, I've been feeling like crud!  Then this week happened.  Again, I'm not sure what I'm doing right or wrong, but it feels like my body is throwing a "hissy fit" with all these changes. 

The one funny thing... I'm now in size 12 clothes, and they are still fitting like a glove!  I gained almost 10 pounds, but my clothes didn't change in fit AT ALL... that is just WEIRD!

I almost look like a real cyclist... now I just have to learn
how to go downhill... without putting on the brakes...
Mother's Day... Jeff surprised me at 6:30AM with a BRAND NEW CYCLING JERSEY!  We were up and getting ready for a ride and Jeff shared this surprise with me... even better... IT FIT!  It is from this cool store in Encinitas called, "Pink Peloton"... a store devoted to clothes and accessories for female triathletes.  I can't wait to see this place myself!!!

Gloria (fellow Graphic 45 Design Team member), Sherry and me!
And, yes... I took some time for myself this weekend (thank you , Sweetheart!)  You might know that I have done some scrapbook design, teaching, writing, etc... and that I stopped scrapping over a year ago.  Yesterday, I was THRILLED to take a mixed art media class at Ever After Scrapbooks from Australia's own Sherry Mendoza.  I met Sherry over a year ago when she was in California and she was responsible for getting a project of mine published back in January in the #1 Scrapbook magazine in Australia, "Scrapbooking Memories."  This class helped me fall back in love with "getting my hands dirty" and I hope to have time soon to do some more design work!

Jeff also treated us to a fantastic lunch at the Irish Pub in town, "O'Sullivan's," and some family shopping time at the mall... then, of course, back to work this afternoon, but it was all worth it!  HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY to all my family and wonderful friends!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Cinco de Mary - my little sister's 40th birthday party...

May 5th...
... the 5th of May...
... for now and ever known in our Irish family as "Cinco de Mary!"...
We had such a fantasic time celebrating the 40th birthday of my sister that I'm just going to post my favorite photos... there are some events that calories don't matter... and HOLY COW... this was one of them!  ENJOY... we sure did...
Mom, Dad, Lana, Kyle, Jeff and Morgan... WOO HOO!
Yes... John rented a donkey for the party...
McWilliams Family Photo...
Us with the donkey...

Mary and John... soooooo cute- 'OLE!
I can't tell you how AWESOME it is to be able to dance...
... with no reservation at a party... BECAUSE... YOU... CAN!!!
The girls with the mustaches... ohhhhh, la, la...
My favorite photo of the night...
 Happy Birthday to my awesome sister... I LOVE YOU, DUDE!! :-)