The Rundown – Countdown To Cuba!

In less than two weeks I will be going to a country I have heard about all my life but was never sure I would see. I will be able to witness the world my father was born into and watch as he sees it for the first time in over 50 years. I will have the privilege of racing a triathlon in his homeland, with my family on the sidelines.This whole adventure is certain to be surreal to all of us on some level. I feel ready for the race but, not so ready for the emotional roller coaster we will all surely be on. It is certain to be a trip we will never forget…at least those of us over the age of 8.

Let the countdown to Cuba begin!



Sadly, all my runs this past week were done on the treadmill. It wasn’t the weather that kept me on it for all of them, but being able to control pacing and incline. Plus, since the weather in Cuba will be about 60 degrees warmer than here, I need to try and emulate those conditions as much as possible.

This workout was super tough but I felt so accomplished afterward. I also had Brittany Bitch to help me out:

The rest of the week I was basically snowed in and trying to meet all my work and fitness deadlines while the kids had no school and delays. Fun is.

Monday – Ladder speed work (above) | 56 min | 7.76 miles

Thursday – Hilly tempo | 42 min | 5.28 miles

Sunday – Aerobic build | 50 min | 7.5 miles

Total = 20.54


I cannot tell you how much I miss cycling in Kona or even just outside! It’s like letting a dog out for a week and then putting it back in it’s cage. Yes, I just compared myself to a dog.

I’m continuing to listen to my motivational audible books and currently still learning from the lessons in The Mindful Athlete. Ok so I also watched one episode of Homeland because I had to catch-up to my husband.

Sunday – 3 x 8 threshold | 50 minutes | 13.5 miles

Wednesday –  Tempo ride before strength training | 55 min | 14.3 miles

Friday – Intensive power ride | 1 hour | 16.2 miles

Total = 44 miles


My coach wrote this comment for my first workout of the week, “I like what I’m seeing!” I could cry. I’ve felt great in the water (despite a head cold) all week and I’m hoping all this work will translate into a good, strong swim in Havana.

Also, ICYMI on my Facebook page some thing were lost in the Spanish to English translation in the athlete’s guide I was emailed:

It led to some great comments, as you can imagine. Luckily neither my brother or my father are on Facebook!

Tuesday – 100s and 25s | 2,400 yards | 36 minutes

Friday – recovery swim | 2,100 yards | 30 minutes

Total = 4,500 yards


XX2i Optics are the official eyewear for USATriathlon and, when they reached out to me to try out a few pair, I couldn’t say yes fast enough. When I first started running I never wore sunglasses. As I grew older and wiser (and needed them on the bike) I wore them pretty much all year long. The problem was I never seemed to have a pair that fit and looked right for both the bike and the run.

Problem solved with the France2 Crystal Green Flash Lenses with Green Tips. Bonus: they come with a strap and interchangeable “tips” so you can match your outfit since, that’s important.

I even got a second pair for those few times I’m not running or biking. It’s basically 3 hours per week but still.

The Bahamas1 Matte Tortoise with Polar Brown Lenses almost made me happy to be home from Hawaii. Almost.

I’ll be doing a full review on these after I put them to the ultimate test with the Cuban sun and during the triathlon. Try to contain your excitement.


Tracking my blood with InsideTracker! Yep, it was time for me to test once again and this time, get a baseline while I’m still kind of in “offseason” mode. I know there are a lot of skeptics out there but, I have to say, after being one of them I have completely changed my mind and really believe in the information this testing provides for athletes.

I’ll be reviewing my results next week so stay tuned for how my body is handling current stresses and how I can improve from now until nationals in August.



I accidentally left behind my make-up bag, filled with newly purchased Mac make-up, in the locker room of the YMCA right before we left for Hawaii. I didn’t notice it was missing until the following day when I literally yelled “NO NO NO NO SHIT NO!” because I knew it was probably gone for good. And it was. And I had to rush out and buy all new make-up while furiously texting my SIL (aka my make-up guru), who said “that is my worst nightmare.” #Truth

There is about 1% of the population in my town who could wear my color make-up and, who shares make-up with a stranger? You are gross. Shame on you. I hope you broke out in hives.


Take a moment people and read:

8 Ideas Running Should Steal from Other Sports | | Ted Spiker

Ideas include a pit crew, rate of difficulty, relief runners and a penalty box. I chose pit crew with rate of difficulty as a close second. How about you?

Shoker! Rediculous chocker Trump attaks and dishoners English with ever-dummer spellings | The Washington Post | Dana Milbank

An opinion piece that hits home on so many levels but, mostly because I write for a living and take butchering of the English language personally.

This is the least of it:

“Again and again, Trump loosed his way. Ridiculous became “rediculous,” Phoenix became “Phoneix” (a felicitous phonics failure), and many paid attention when Trump proclaimed that he was not “bought and payed for.”

Trump let the sun set on basketball’s Bobby Knight, knighting him “Bobby Night.” And he put Barack Obama into military housing with an extra “r,” turning the then-president into Barrack.”


This is where I found Vaughn on a recent grocery excursion:


How was your week? 

Are you counting down to anything?


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  1. I once had a Tiffany bean necklace (that was a present from one of my best friends) taken from my shoes IN THE BACK OF THE ROOM. DURING YOGA. WTF?
    I love how your off season is still 150% of most people’s training seasons…
    Susie @ Suzlyfe recently posted…Parental Visits, Happy Places, and New Eats (Weekend Recap)My Profile

    1. During YOGA? That is like a sacrilege!
      I was laughing about your “offseason” comment halfway though my pool workout today 🙂 Thanks for that!

  2. I have left my makeup bag as well and I know the feeling. Mac works well for me but it is not cheap makeup. I have no countdowns now that we are coming back to NJ.
    Hollie recently posted…Training: Heat and MovingMy Profile

    1. No, it was not cheap. I just bought a whole arsenal of stuff this past November, totaling over $200. Sigh.
      I hope you made it safely back to NJ!

  3. Wouldn’t it be funny if swimsuits really aren’t allowed? See you sure it’s not a nudist tri? Lol! And that’s just gross about the make up. If they wanted the bag, why not dump out the contents? People are horrible!
    Angela @ Happy Fit Mama recently posted…Last Week’s WorkoutsMy Profile

    1. Um, nope, that would not be funny at all. Especially not on the bike. Ahem…
      Totally! And the bag was about $10 from Target. So aggravating.

  4. Bud Light, Vaughn? Pick a better beer, dude;) But maybe wait a few years. Sorry about your makeup – I wonder if there’s a market for used MAC products? Eww.

    So excited for you, Allie – what adventures you are having in 2017!

    1. I know, right? He doesn’t know yet and I hope he doesn’t figure it out anytime soon!!
      The more I told people the story the more they were like “oh yeah, it’s a thing.” What??? So gross.

      Thanks Dana!! Yes, so far 2017 has been amazing…and it’s only February!

  5. ?Hablas español? Of course, that Cuban Spanish is impossible! At least you’ll have your dad to navigate for you.

    Curious if you go with the no swimsuit option….
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…Trusting the Process: On and Off the RoadMy Profile

    1. You would think but no, no hablo espanol. *hangs head in shame* But yes, my dad will no longer have an “accent” like the people in Spain said he did 🙂

      You know I’m doing that race no matter what so… I promise not to post pictures 🙂

      1. Oh, you HAVE to post pictures. Don’t just tease us… I think snapseed has a blur feature if you don’t want to show everything.
        Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…Trusting the Process: On and Off the RoadMy Profile

        1. Yes they do and YES I will! I will find a way, not to worry!

  6. Ha ha! That Vaughn photo is the best! I am so sorry about your makeup. That is just CRUEL. I’m super excited about your Cuba trip!!! And Work Bitch is the funniest/best song for speed work! Ha ha! So great! That treadmill speed sesh is NO JOKE. Holy smokin’ fast.
    Suzy recently posted…Mileage MondayMy Profile

    1. Thank you and YES gotta have me some Brittany motivation when I’m gasping for air!

  7. Two weeks!! That is coming right up- so exciting!! And that translation issue is hysterical… 🙂
    Laura recently posted…A Utah marathon? Plus giveaway!My Profile

    1. It was a serious LOL moment…and no one was with me so obviously I had to post it 🙂 Thanks Laura!

  8. A makeup thief is truly disgusting !! Someone stole my sweaty wet flip flops and bottled water from the gym. I seriously wonder what the heck people are thinking but then again I don’t wanna know.
    Yay for Cuba!! I’ll just count down to Cuba with you. Otherwise I count down daily till bedtime. Lol
    Danielle recently posted…WIR sleep less play moreMy Profile

    1. I think we could do a whole post on weird/gross things people steal from the gym. UGH!!
      And I hear ya with the bedtime 🙂 Thanks Danielle!

    • Ana on February 13, 2017 at 3:00 PM
    • Reply

    Wow!! that is the trip of a lifetime! I’m excited for you and your family! Are you taking the kids?

    I hope whomever stole your make up does her a huge rash! how fing rude!

    Uhm… do you have to ride the bike on that swimsuit? I got chaffed just looking at the pictures!
    Ana recently posted…Weekly Wrap 2 12.17My Profile

    1. YES the boys are coming and so are their cousins (my brother’s kids) so it will be awesome all around!
      And biking in the triathlon-suit/swimsuit really isn’t that bad – I promise 🙂

  9. Hahaha I love the way Vaughn thinks! Well, not the Bud Light part because light beer is sad, but the beer section is generally the best section of the grocery store after the produce aisle. That’s awful and disgusting that someone would steal your makeup. Seriously people? And MAC nonetheless?
    That is so exciting about your Cuba trip being so soon! It must be so surreal to finally get to go there and see it with your dad. My great-grandparents were from Germany and it was so fun and interesting to visit there and see where my family was from, even if things had changed from when they lived there to the present. There’s that automatic deep connection to a place where your family is from. Enjoy your countdown to the trip!
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Lake Sammamish Half 2017 Training Week 6My Profile

    1. Yes – that is exactly what I hope it will be like and, I just feel so lucky that myself, my brother and our kids will ALL get to experience it firsthand! Thanks Laura.

  10. To be honest I couldn’t read the butchered article. It hurt my soul too much. and OMG about the makeup bag 🙁 They prolly saw the value of the products and tried to sell it online 🙁 ugh. CUBA, 2 WEEKS! I didn’t realize it was SO SO soon! I’m so excited for you and I will be stalking your IG and stuffs because picturessss! Please take pics of the old cars too–It’s on my bucket list to get to Cuba before the end of next year.

    1. I will do anything for you Nellie! Thank you and OMG my heart hurts so much these days 🙁

  11. Oh my gosh, you are going to have such a blast in Cuba! Can’t wait to read all about it.

    And seriously, who takes a left makeup bag?! Bad karma for them.

    WOW at that Trump spelling article. My favorite part is when they mention times when he’s tried to call others stupid, and within the insult, misspelled common words. I know I’m a writer and am into grammar and all, but when I email 3 people I check my grammar & spelling like 3x, let alone if I was tweeting out to my 50 million followers?!! He’s overconfident and careless — with more than just his spelling!

    1. I know!!! I do the same exact thing. The issue is we only have about a tenth of the ego he does. He probably thinks the correct spelling of words is beneath him. 🙂

  12. Look at you, killing it on the swimming! Do you need a chaperone for Cuba? I’m not really that responible, but I travel well. 😉

    And OMG Trump… how about the Department of Education misspellings too? Maybe if they could all just write in Russian… I really may scream.
    Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table recently posted…Quick & Easy Protein-Packed Red Velvet RecipesMy Profile

    1. I need someone who can locate and then direct me toward the best food and drinks and, I believe YOU are that person!!

      “Maybe they could all just write in Russian” killing me!! Literally.

    • Jess on February 14, 2017 at 4:56 AM
    • Reply

    This will surely go down as one of your most memorable triathlons. You are awesome for pulling this off, even though this will be mixed emotions for your father, hopefully it will mostly be a feeling of comfort and perhaps even closure on what happened in the past. Not to mention, making a fun family vacation out of it is a great way to put a positive and lasting sentiment on the whole situation for him. You are a great daughter :). Oh, and I hope you kick ass in the race of course!

    1. Thank you so much Jess and, part of me cannot believe I actually pulled it off! The race is really like an afterthought but, of course, I will be out there trying to kill it!!

  13. Ok, so thieves are no good but possible naked triathlon swims . . . hahah!
    Still laughing about that one. So cool that you get to go and race in Cuba to find out more about your Dad’s heritage with your Dad. I cannot wait to hear about the whole incredible experience!!!
    Sandra Laflamme recently posted…9 weeks to go? Whaaaaat?! Boston Marathon Training Update #6My Profile

    1. Thanks so much and I really hope I can at least wear my swimsuit:-)

  14. Hahahah, love that pic of Vaughn….future frat boy? LOL….I am so incredibly excited for you and your family to go to Cuba! How cool is that for your dad to go back there after 50 years. Amazing and I’m sure will be very emotional for all of you!!!

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