My Shelfari Bookshelf (These are seriously just a FEW of the hundreds of books I've read lately)

Sunday, January 30, 2011


Oh how I heart Insulindependence and the people I have the privilege to associate with! Last weekend I was able to go to Carlsbad, CA to spend a few days with my favorite people in the world. 6 of the 9 Triabetes captains were there, but along with them were 83 diabetic runners that I got to talk to and hang out with. How cool is that??

I arrived Friday night at around 7 and was picked up from the airport by Dan Vincent  and Sarah Hankel (2 of the captains). We went to the hotel to pick up Andrea Huston and then it was off to meet a bunch of people for dinner.  We had such a great time just catching up with everyone. Brian Phelps (another captain) was at a different dinner with his triabuddy, Zyler, who was receiving a reward, but Christian Chiappe met us there. It was so great to see everyone!

Saturday was a FULL day. It started off in Legoland where they had the kids 1 mile fun run. Brian and his triabuddy Zyler were running in that, so we went to cheer them on. What a cool event! I wish my triabuddy would have been able to be there. I feel bad because she hasn't been able to be at any of the events we've had, so I feel like she's not really getting what this organization is about, and what it can do for her. I hope she can get to know the other triabuddies in St. George and that it will be a positive experience for her, because from what I have seen everyone who has had a chance to spend time with the other diabetics has had a life changing experience.

After the fun run we went to the beach where we met up with about 100 people for surfing, eating, and fun. I didn't surf (cause I've never surfed in my life before), but I had a great time meeting new people and talking to some I hadn't seen for a while.  If it hadn't been cold (well, relatively speaking), and I didn't have a race the next day, I might have tried it...but no. :) Knowing me I probably would've broken something!

Here is Sarah, me, and Veronica Diaz (who is a diabetic nutrition expert. She worked with us in Florida).

Later we went to an endurance expo, then to the Carlsbad expo to pick up our race packets, and then on to the Insulindependence dinner.  It was so much fun! Andrea bought these shirts for all the captains that were there (unfortunately Brian had already left when we finally got a picture), but this is one of my favorite pictures! We joked about being "relentlessly awesome" the rest of the time. (And I actually chanted that to myself as I was running the next day...) :)
Christian, Sarah, me, Andrea, Dan

Sunday morning was the actual half marathon. I was REALLY hoping to get a sub 2 hour half marathon. My first 1/2 I got 2:06, so I figured that a year later I better be a lot stronger and faster than that. Dan decided he'd be nice and pace me (he's like crazy fast, and would have just killed the half but he was so kind to run with a slow poke like me!)  I had NO IDEA how freaking hilly Carlsbad was!!  We started out strong. I was running some sub 8 minute miles at times. Mostly it ranged between 8 and 8:45 the first several miles. But man, as the hills just kept coming and coming and coming, I just couldn't keep that up.  I was struggling, and I was frustrated with myself, but kept pushing through. I seriously wanted to quit and walk so much. I did walk a few times up some crazy hills and just through the aid stations to drink water. But mostly I ran. I ended up averaging about 9:03 through the whole thing, which made me finish in 2:02.  :( Boo. 3 minutes slower than my goal.  3 minutes is quite a bit of time. If I could have stayed up with Dan I could have done it, but I just didn't have it in me that day. Oh well! Gives me something to work for next time!  If I had done it on the same course in Arizona, I KNOW I would've gotten my goal. That race was flat. This was HILLY.  Beautiful along the coast, but hilly.  As we all know, hills are of the devil and I hate them. Oy.  St. George is all hills.....

Here are some pics for you to enjoy:
 Dan, Sarah, and I pre-race
 Chris Jarvis (an Olympic rower!) and Andrea

 Andrea and me. We finished only like 3 minutes apart!

 Saci and Igor
 Coach Andrew, and Kyle. Andrew won his age group...after ditching shoes he borrowed that were 1 size too small, getting shoes from a random stranger in the crowd, and carrying the shoe that had the timing chip on it! :) Kind of amazing!

 Me with my awesome pacer and fellow triabetes captain, Dan

 Ryan Maloney and his past triabuddy Steve. Ryan is amazing! He did the half marathon!! (He's 11 or 12. crazy, huh?)

 Julie and Scott Sekella. I just watched her complete Ironman Arizona. She did amazing!!

 Emily Ianello and Gary Schmidt

 These are Andrew's toenails after running 18 miles in shoes a size too small. Ouch! He lost the toenail...

 Jennifer Davino (from New York) and me

 me, Dan, and Jen Davino

Sarah, Andrea, me, and Dan after the race! So glad it's over!!

Overall I had one of the very best weekends of my life! I don't race on Sunday. I don't ever do that. But from  now on I will make Carlsbad a yearly event because I think supporting Insulindependence, and in return being supported by all these amazing people is a top priority for me. They've changed my life! I love them!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Doubt...the DEVIL Inside

I have a confession to make. I'm afraid of lots of things. I'm afraid of the dark. I'm afraid of something ever happening to one of my children. I'm afraid of never being good enough. I'm afraid of heights. I'm afraid of the ocean (even though I'm a good swimmer). I'm afraid of not finishing my Ironman.  I'm afraid people will find out I'm not really an athlete at all. Sometimes when I teach I'm afraid people will realize I don't really know what I'm doing. Every single time I start working out, I'm afraid I won't be able to finish it.  And I'm afraid that once this Ironman is over, I'll go right back to being lazy and fat.

It's this doubt that I HATE! I hate it, and yet I haven't been able to get rid of it. The thing is, I should be proud of myself for the things I've accomplished, but my brain always says: You can't really do that. You just got lucky. Other people are so much better than you. You can't really run a marathon. You can't really finish this workout. You should just quit now. You will NEVER be an Ironman.

AHHHHH! It makes me crazy! You know what, though? Every single time I start a workout, I want to quit. But I don't. I make myself finish it. My brain says: Just don't do the last 15 minutes. Just do most of the miles, but not the last one or two. Just forget the warm up or cool down of a swim. Just walk for a little bit.  You know what I tell my brain? NO! NO! NO! I WILL finish this workout. I will do all the miles. I will bike the full 4 hours. I will do the warm up and cool down. I will run the full 10 miles. I WILL FINISH!

I'm always afraid at the beginning of a workout that I won't be able to finish. But I am always able to finish. So why am I still afraid? Why do I have to have that persistent doubt in myself?  Last Thursday I had to do a 2:15 bike ride followed by an 8 mile run. The second I sat down on the bike I thought something was wrong with the seat. It felt like CEMENT! My butt hurt and I hadn't even begun! I literally got up to look at it to see if something had happened to the seat. Nope. Same seat. I set the level for 14, set the program to hills, and off I went. I watched about 50 people come and go while I continued to sit there biking my heart out. When I finished, I wanted nothing more than to just go home and go to bed. I didn't. I started the run. I wanted to quit and go home. I almost did. Instead I ramped up the speed and made myself go faster. Pretty soon I had finished 30 minutes and more than 3 miles, and I felt great!  By my last 1.5 miles I was pretty exhausted. So I ramped up the speed again because I just wanted to be finished! I finished in 1:12. So I spent more than 3.5 hours at the gym...watched LOTS of people come and go. It was almost 11 pm. But I finished. TAKE THAT BRAIN!

I haven't been able to get a 100% training week yet. I keep trying, but it hasn't happened yet. But, I have ALWAYS given 100% in my training, and I have completed every workout I've set out to do. I'm at the gym or running/biking anywhere from 1 to 4 hours almost everyday. And yet...I'm still afraid. Is it enough? Will I be ready? Should I quit now because I just can't seem to get faster on the blasted hills?

I have improved my running time a lot. I used to run 10.30 - 11 minute miles. I'm down to 8 - 9 minute miles (with hills). My bike has definitely improved, but nowhere near where I need it to be. I have to try and get 1 - 2 miles per hour faster so that I won't have to be on the bike more than 7.5 hours.  My swim is the only place I feel great. I have that in the bag! I swam 4000 m in 1:08, and that would be perfect for my Ironman. But the rest? I'm scared. I'm really really scared.

So this doubt that lives in my brain? I'm ready to be done with it! It sucks! I will keep pushing myself. I will keep trying. And I'm hoping that eventually I will believe I am capable of what others are believing in me. I believe in everyone else...why can't I believe in myself? Because doubt is the DEVIL within! :(

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 - My Year in Review

So...I have done so many amazing things this year. I've gone through some highs and some lows. I've taken pictures of just about everything, and yet I've blogged about basically nothing. Lame! I'm never going to be able to remember it all, and I wouldn't want to bore you with every little detail. However, as part of my new year's resolutions, I'm resolving to blog more often! starts today. So, this is my review of 2010. (It might be sorta long, so I apologize!)

I should go to bed because school starts again tomorrow, and with it the BUSY-NESS of my life. But, if I don't do this now it may not happen for a long time, and I promised myself it would. 2010 was a year of firsts and a year of change for me. I started the year off right with my very first full marathon in January. I had worked long and hard for that day, and I was extremely proud of myself for finishing! I did want to finish with a better time (I finished in 4:45), but in the last 3 miles I had a low blood sugar, and luckily I ran into 2 other diabetics right then who were willing to share some sugar and some support with me! Jerry Nairn and Brian Foster changed my life forever with that meeting. They introduced me to Peter Nerothin who is in charge of Insulindependence, and I ended up becoming a Triabetes Team Captain for 2010. Crazy, and life changing. I went from never running in 2009, to running a full marathon in 2010, to training for a full Ironman, which I will complete in May of 2011. I've learned A LOT about training with diabetes this year, too. That first marathon I didn't take a BG monitor with me, I didn't have enough sugar, and had no insulin with me either. What a difference a year can make!

In February Troy and I celebrated our 15 year anniversary. That was a HUGE milestone for us! For many years we didn't think we were gonna make it, but we did. Brooklyn was the miracle we needed to get ourselves back on track and happy, and she truly made that happen. We decided to take a trip to Hawaii with my brother, Porter, and his wife Lana, who were celebrating their 10 year anniversary. (We went in June). It was SUCH an amazing trip! We swam in the ocean with giant sea turtles, snorkeled, kayaked, rode bikes, ran, visited Pearl Harbor, shopped at the Swap Meet (which was awesome!), hiked Diamond Head, ate delicious pineapple at the Dole Pineapple Plantation, spent an AMAZING day at the Polynesian Cultural Center, and just absolutely enjoyed every minute of the beautiful Hawaiian island. I would go back in a heart beat...and live there! I loved it!!

Also in February, I participated in my second Ragnar Relay. This one was done with family, and was a blast! Troy's brother Leon put together a team, and our van consisted of Leon and Amy (his wife), Troy's dad, Chester, my sister Dixie, my niece Breckyn, my bro-in-law, Colby, and myself. The year before when I did my first Ragnar (and really had my first experience with running), I had the EASIEST leg of the race. (Which did not in ANY WAY feel easy to me!) This year, I got one of the very hardest legs...and it was nice to know I could do it! Not gonna lie, though, that 3 mile STRAIGHT UP hill sucked! Coming down the other side of it was amazing, though!
 In March our family decided to cash in on Disney's "Give a Day, Get a Day" program, so we volunteered to help set up for a soccer tournament at Dobson High School, and in return we got 4 free tickets to Disneyland! It was so worth it! We didn't even have to help more than 2 or 3 hours before they let us go, and we got tickets for all of us but Brooklyn. We decided to use them for Spring Break, and we had such a fabulous time. It was perfect weather, and a perfect little short family vacation.

In May I competed in the SheROX triathlon in Tempe again. That was the triathlon that started me racing 2 years ago. This year I did MUCH better than last year, but still not as fast as I had hoped to do. I think I took like 13 minutes off my time from the year before, but really it should've been more than that. This time my 3 sisters did it again, as well as my sis-in-law, Lana, and it was so much fun to experience that with them!
 May was a CRAZY month for us because Carter decided to have appendicitis, and he thought it would be extra fun to let that appendix burst! :( This was like 2 weeks before school got out, and Carter had to be in the hospital for about 6 days, then he had to have a picc line inserted so we could continue to administer medicine to him for the next week after he was out of the hospital. Luckily he got to stay with Grandma and Grandpa Shumway during that week, because we were heading to Hawaii for our big vacation! It was pretty scary. They said he had one of the biggest appendices they'd ever seen...and it really did happen fast. But, he's healthy and happy and appendix free now!

Also in May I had the opportunity to travel to St. George where I met the other 8 Triabetes captains, and I began this journey of training for an Ironman and raising $5000 for this amazing organization, Insulindependence. These people have been so inspirational to me, and I have made friends with people from all over the country who are experiencing the same things as me. I feel so lucky! True...I had to get the 'betes to experience all this...but I wouldn't trade it for anything! :)
 The summer is always my favorite time of year. I love swimming. I love swim team. I love GREER with my family! I love having a break and spending time with my kids. I love the 4th of July. Summer is just awesome!! We enjoyed it to the fullest, and were sad when it quickly came to a close.

This school year has been AMAZING so far! I truly have the very best class in the world (seriously...not one single behavior problem. In my 14 years of teaching, this is a first). The kids are just NICE, and hard working, and loving, and they make me happy! In a year where I have ZERO spare time, they have made it easy for me. Getting up at 4 am to train, then working all day, then coming home to family is challenging. Thank goodness they make it bearable!

One of the very best things to happen to me this year is that I finally got an insulin pump! I got the Animas Ping, (which is waterproof), and it has made all the difference in the world! No more roller coasters of high and low blood sugars. It has seriously helped to keep me stable. I still go high and low, but NOTHING like I did before. On top of that I got a DexCom Continuous Glucose Monitor, and it shows me what my blood sugars are constantly and shows me the trends of whether I'm rising or dropping or staying steady. Holy is amazing, and it has really helped me manage my diabetes!

At the end of the summer I found out that my friend from my running club was able to finally get me a slot in the St. George marathon in October. Ummmm....I had NOT been training all summer for that, so I quickly started to do more running! I did a 20 mile run about 3 weeks before, and felt good...figured I'd be fine. Unfortunately, I was NOT fine. I started the race feeling great! I was trying to stay with the 4:15 pace group, and really was feeling amazing. So much so, that I decided to run faster than them so that I could utilize some of the downhill to make up for the time I was sure I'd lose on the uphill. I felt great for about 7 miles, and then something went terribly wrong. I don't even know how to explain it, or what it was...but I seriously thought I was gonna die. I started getting cramps, but high up in my chest. It hurt to breathe. I had to take off my heart rate monitor because it felt like it was squeezing me. I slowed down. I had to walk. I had to go off the road and squat down and try and catch my breath. I was in SO MUCH PAIN! I've never had this happen before, and didn't even know what was going on. It was making me nauseated and I thought I was gonna puke. I kept going, though. For 9 more miles I walked/stopped/ran/walked again/stopped...until at mile 13.75 I PUKED MY GUTS OUT!!! Literally. It was nasty. But then I felt better so started again. Made it another 2.5 miles before it hit again and I finally just turned in the towel. No way was I going to go through 10 more miles of that crap. It sucked. One of the lowest moments for me. I felt like a loser. I was depressed. I didn't feel worthy to be with the group of friends who were there running with me. I couldn't enjoy the celebration and festivities at the end of the race. AAHAHAHAHAH! It sucked.'s over, and I haven't let that stop me from believing that I can still do this, and I will. Know what sucked even worse? As we were about to leave for the 10 hour drive home, Troy called me from the hospital saying he was going in for emergency gall bladder surgery. Awesome! :( 2 emergency surgeries in one year...and I wasn't even there for him! It was a crappy ride home, let me tell ya!
 (This was at the beginning...before I sucked it up!)

A couple weeks later I raced in my first Olympic distance triathlon in Lake Pleasant. Holy cow, it was HARD!! But...I did finish it! The swim was a piece of cake for me (even though the water was so dang choppy and the current kept pushing us off course). I finished with the fastest of swimmers. Swimming has always been easy for me. I fully expect to get out of the water in St. George in an hour and 5 minutes...unfortunately it's the SMALLEST PART OF THE RACE! :( Anyway, the 25 mile bike ride here was brutal! All hills, and very difficult. By the time I got to the run I was dead. 6.2 miles in BLAZING HELL HEAT was tough. It was straight downhill, then you turned around and had to come straight back uphill...brutal. And you had to do that twice. I was one of the last finishers. I don't care! I finished! But man, when they ran out of water, and the water they had before was totally hot...that was not cool.

One of the greatest experiences for me this year was getting to go to iD University in Florida. The first week of November was spent with my fellow Triabetes team captains in Panama City, Florida where we trained together and learned together for 6 days. Not only that, we were able to help our triabuddies prepare for and race in their first triathlon at the end of the week! (My triabuddy, London Lines, was not able to be there). It was SO AMAZING!!!! We ran, we rode our bikes (and I was able to go 56 miles - which was the farthest I've ever ridden before), we swam in the ocean, we had a really cool pool swim, and we learned from expert dieticians, nutritionists, and psychologists, and just spent time talking and getting to know each other better. What a phenomenal group of people I am privileged to be a part of. I will never forget that week.

 On Thanksgiving this year I did another sprint triathlon. I had done this one last year, and it was a blast! It's a really mini one (2 mile run, 12 mile bike, 400 m swim. It's also a backward tri, so you run first and swim last). This year my triabuddy got to do it with me, and this was her first triathlon! I was so proud of her! For me it was an amazing improvement from the year before. I got 6th in my age group with a time of 1:08. I was very pleased with that! I've still gotta work on my bike time...I'm just not the fastest there. Oh well!
 As soon as iD University was over our Ironman training began in earnest. I have been working out 6 days a week (for the most part...I do miss some days here and there), and now we've begun our 2 a days. This is especially hard for me with my busy schedule and lifestyle...but I'm trying my darndest to fit it all in and make it work. I would've never done this without this group of people supporting me and inspiring me. I am so grateful to them! :)

One of the COOLEST things I got to do this year was be in a commercial! That's right! I was in a commercial for (That, and I also got to be on a recording of a CD called "The Lamb of God" written by my brother's best friend, Rob Gardner.  It is AMAZING, and you all need to get a copy of it if you haven't already. Go to to get it!)  You can see my commercial here. It was a BLAST to do, and one of the funnest experiences ever! (I know the coolest people!)
Here is a link to the video for you to check out.  It is worth your time! :)

Click here to see Scrapbook Commercial

There have been so many things I've done with my kids, my family, my friends that I haven't blogged about, and I wish I would've...but the things I've written here have been some of the highlights! 2010 was great...but 2011 is going to be even better! Wanna know why? Because I will be an IRONMAN!!!!!!