Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Ultragrain Facebook Chat TOMORROW / I went to Austraila and LOVED it!

Would you like your questions answered tomorrow on training, fitness or nutrition by yours truly?  Here is your chance!  I'll be hosting a chat on Ultragrain's facebook page tomorrow from 12pm-1pm Central time.  Please LIKE their page for additional updates and to be able to interact during this fun, inspiring event!

ASK THE EXPERT. Next Thursday, April 10, from 12pm-1pm CDT, professional triathlete and registered dietitian Kim Schwabenbauer, RD, CSSD, LDN, will be hosting a chat here on our Ultragrain Facebook page. During that time, she’ll be responding to your sports and nutrition questions. Make sure you mark your calendar and come ready to post your questions on our page during that time. From “What’s the perfect pre-run breakfast?” to “What’s the greatest piece of advice you could give someone who wants to start working out?”, Kim is ready to share her expertise.

[Disclaimer: This advice is not meant to diagnose, prevent or cure any type of disease and all exercise programs discussed should be discussed with your individual health care professional]

On to Australia!

I'll be honest, I never thought I would get a chance to visit somewhere so far away.  The cost seemed prohibitive, the plane ride of 20+ hours seemed way too long for any normal person to be sitting (let alone a triathlete who has to pee every 20 seconds), and I just wasn't sure about the logistics of traveling somewhere so far away to race.  However, when Coach Jesse suggested this as the first race of the season, I knew a couple of things.  One, he's pretty smart, so if I defer to him he's usually pretty spot on in terms of what makes sense.  Two, we do have a homestay so that would help out with the cost a LITTLE bit to offset the extremely expensive plane tickets.  Three, we are only young once and it's just money.  This was an incredible opportunity that I knew would probably only come along once in a lifetime.  We almost didn't bit the bullet for Kyle to come, but somewhere along the line we decided it was worth it and pulled the trigger!  

The plane ride alone was daunting and little old me didn't realize you have to have a VISA to enter a country that must be filled out online ahead of your arrival at the airport. If they said it, I missed it!  I came about 30 minutes away from not being able to check in before my time was up despite arriving 2.5 hours early at the airport!  WHOOPS!  That was fun (not so much)!  

For what I lacked in visa knowledge, I made up for in "healthy snacking on plane" abilities.  

I thought long and hard about eating healthy on my way over and bought this cool bento box collapsing tupperware extravaganza that I used to bring my salad, hummus, dressing and some greek yogurt!  You should have seen people's faces when I broke this out.  They either thought I was a genius or STRAIGHT UP NUTS.   Either way, I was totally fine with it.

I found these handy dandy insulated bags to keep carrots, hummus, my fruit and some nuts / trail mix / dried fruit in and it was so nice to just pull these babies out and start snacking on my regular food! 

 I love single serving 100 calorie packs of guacamole!  A life saver!
Once I arrived it took about a full day until I was this happy.  The first day, ROUGH.  I tried to ride with my homestay Gavin, but to no avail, I could barely keep up on a recovery ride!  I almost turned around at twenty minutes.  I was just "off"!  After 20 hours of travel, I'm sure that's to be expected.  Eventually, I started adjusting and it got better!

The weather was spectacular and we checked out much of the run course by bike which was nice.  It was so helpful to have someone who had done this race and could tell you the in's and out's of it prior.  I put him through a few tough ones on the run and bike so I'm glad he didn't just drop me off and leave me for good!  Thanks Gav! 

We even did some open water swimming with a few other athletes prior to the race!  I really enjoyed meeting two of the other female professionals, Kristy & Tracy, as well as, awesome AG-athlete Andrea (who will be attending the big show this fall with a time UNDER 10 hours at the race! Excellent!).   We got pushed around pretty good in the open water so it was good practice in case we had a rough one!
Then there was this!  Yippee!!   Sorry.. still happy!  Yep!

 Then there was this!  Foot surgery.  Thank you Kyle! 

After we did all the awards etc., it was time to explore!  We took a ride up the
"Great Ocean Road" and hit little towns along the way like Torquay, a quaint little surfer town with great food and some pretty serious waves.  We had a nice late breakfast and enjoyed the view!
Yum!  Breakfast for lunch!  Eggs benedict with salmon and avocado!

There were hand gliders right out front so we were able to watch them soar like birds while we dined.  I thought about asking them to let me try it, but I don't think that would be a good idea for a first timer two days post-ironman.

 We also checked out a road near Kennett River where we heard you can see  Koala's if you looked VERY closely at the trees.  However, one thing we learned - they are not bears.  You should know if you call them Koala "bears" you will be corrected!  Second thing we observed was that it is not very easy to get their mug on camera as they are HIGH in the trees.  They just look like little furry blobs.  It was fun to see them in person sleeping away (which they do for about 14 hours per day).   

We checked out our local scene of Port Melbourne and some interesting hair styles.

We ate, drank and we were very merry! I might have been a little too merry at times with the wine.  Let's not speak about that!

We ate "hot crossed buns" which are real, not just in a little child hood song!

  I did NOT, however, eat the vegemite even though yes, it WAS available both at our house AND on the course!  It smelled so salty to me!   I'll grab a few lollies and vegemite next time!

We checked out the wineries in the Yarra Valley and did a tasting!  It was lovely and I really enjoyed getting to try some high end wine (a.k.a. not what I can afford). 

Gav did some real work while we headed out touring around!  I wanted to get in and stomp the grapes, but they said it's not really done that way anymore unless you REALLY want to! 

Not sure what to say about this?  Interesting!

 Don't worry about yielding, just GIVE WAY!

I leave you with this fun little poem from White Rabbit Brewery!  It was a splendid trip and one I will not soon forget!  I wish we had more time (and more funds) so we could have flown to see some other places, but we made the most of the time we had.  It was so nice to spend some non-triathlon time after the race, something I almost never do!  Hope you enjoyed the pictures and if you've been to Melbourne, make sure you let me know if we hit the right areas or what we should do next time in a comment!

No comments: