Saturday, May 24, 2014

Rev3tri Rush draft legal race

"We will all face adversity on the road to becoming a champion. Be Bold and toe the line with joy in your heart and a smile on your face. You get the opportunity to race" - Terra Castro

Today I drove down to Richmond for the Rev3 Rush draft legal race.  I have been working with a Youth athlete in our area who is coached by the Endorphin High Performance Team. We meet during the week for workouts and focus on learning life skills because being a teenage triathlete is not the easiest thing to do. I remember those days vividly. 

This was a great race for her to gain confidence and have fun. To see a junior beaming with a smile because they can see what over time they are capable of is pretty cool.  When I was 15, I had mentors that dragged me along on the bike and that held me accountable to being the best I could be. Now it is my turn to share that passion and focus.

This was a great venue- the Richmond International speedway race track. Rev3 brought in a great 25m pool (though it may need some markers on the wall for flip turns etc) and the athletes went in heats.  It made for a safe and spectator friendly, draft legal race.  I hope this will inspire a series down the road because what a fun day!

Now it is a 3 x P kind of night- pjs, pizza, and planning for the Be Bold athletes.

Remember you will face adversity.  Chose to focus on joy and smile- you will toe the line victorious no matter what.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Climb the Mountain

GUILTY. I have recently have been on my knees in prayer for the Lord to move a mountain, waiting and hoping that the darn Mt Everest would get a move on. Then it hit me the other day in my daily morning quiet time- ASSUME CHRIST WANTS YOU TO CLIMB IT INSTEAD. Sometimes the truth is hard to hear. I have my climbing gear out ready to rock and roll.  Off we go- UP the mountain. The thing is the view at the top will be beautiful.  I know it.

Sunday was Mother's Day.  A sweet friend of mine from Redemption Hill reminded me that though I am not a mom, I am a mom in other ways, to the kiddos that are in my life.  Her reminder helped me smile on a day when I will admit I was a bit sad. I desire to be a Mom but in this season of our life it isn't realistic. God gave me a heart that is bursting with love for kids especially teenagers, so I am making sure that I use the gifts God has given me to love those around me.  I had brunch with my buddy who is training for Youth Elite Triathlon Nationals.  We meet at least once a week to discuss life, have a meal, train and just develop as an athlete. While at brunch, a sweet MU athlete called me to say Happy Mother's Day.  Sadly, his mom passed away this winter- this phone call was the most precious and meaningful moment for me. I will never forget it. God continued through the day to shower me with love and encouragement- I walked Igby and 2 kiddos down the block gave me the above flowers, wishing me a Happy Mother's Day.  I was reminded that God knows EXACTLY what you need.  You may think you know what you'd like or need. But God knows and will shower you in that perfect moment with exactly what will overflow your heart and encourage you.
The biggest news:  The bike is out of retirement.  Project Vans is underway.  My buddy and I have given the next 6 weeks until Monroe Jr/Youth Elite Series Triathlon an official name.  Breaking it down and focusing on the process of nailing sessions, focusing on the details of what it takes to be faster, to be better each day. At the end of the 6 weeks we will travel in our new shoes (vans that have already been picked out) to Monroe to race- to BE BOLD- and toe the line in confidence.

Just taking that mountain one step at a time, with an overflowing heart.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Fast forward a year

I am sitting in the DCA airport waiting on a super delayed flight to Boston. I am still in my Oyster Adams Middle school Race day coach outfit- our team made tie-dye shirt and black leggings. My skin is sunburned and my heart is absolutely beaming. Our track team placed 4th in the boys overall DCIAA championships out of 14 and the girls where 6th overall (with only 3 runners due to 7th graders being in Spain on their year end trip).

Sitting here I realize that literally a year ago to the weekend, I was wrestling with what God was asking me to do. It may not make sense to many, walking away from a sport in my prime, with a contract and sponsors. I DNF'd at Florida 70.3 last May on the bike- with peace in my heart knowing for me there was more. I was called to do more than just swim bike and run. I knew my home life was not completely healthy due to the demands of racing professionally and being married to a high performance coach.  I love my husband and want to have the marriage God desires for us.

Being the type A personality I am, I jumped a bit too intensely into our marriage. I smothered Zane and made things a bit awkward. I took on odd and end jobs and filled my time. We jumped into counseling and tears were shed. (Ps. Still in counseling and grateful for wise mentors in our life)

Then one day out of the blue out friend Calah told me about a coaching job in DC at a middle school. It started out in my mind about our family budget and well I figured I could coach a little (never had the desire to be a coach). On July 5 I met with who would be my co-coach for XC and track and the school's AD at Starbucks in NW DC. I prayed about it and felt great peace to jump in.

I remember the first few weeks of practice. The commute was horrible and I felt grumpy and stressed. I kept doubting if I could actually do the job. Then it clicked. It was not a job but an opportunity to be there for these teens- grades 6-8. The joy that filled my heart just being there for these runners. Seeing them develop as runners but also being their as a sounding board and someone to talk to. My heart continued to melt till I realized God placed me here not just to help these awesome teens but to change my heart and focus.

Today I can see that retiring as even bigger than what I thought. God is so good to open doors I didn't know where there. Never did I think I would coach or work with teenagers. 

And now I am about to board a plane to get my USAT Youth and Junior coaching license. 

It's exciting to see how God works when we just get out of our own way. 

There are exciting times ahead! Dusting off this blog. Let's see what lies ahead.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

NFL Sunday: Redskins vs Chiefs

Sunday was a special day- I got to take my Dad to a Redskins game. Football is something I love to share with my Daf. He played DIII football and I know he would have be an amazing coach if he could of done that and supported our family. I have so many fond memories growing up of lounging on the couch eating nachos and watching games with my Dad. Taking my Dad to his first outside NFL game and first one live together was super special. And of course it ended up being epic. 

As you can see it was SNOWING! It snowed a few inches then snow ice then sleet rain. We ended up leaving the 4th quarter because we couldn't feel our feet. I wore snow pants it was that cold!

Evidence that it was cold and snowy. I couldn't help but smile the whole time. 

We were so close I got to see the Redskins as they came onto the field. 

This was the point where the ponchos came on and we started to freeze. 

Of course we came home, got in warm clothes and watched the Seahawks vs 49ers game.

A special Sunday with my dad and husband. So grateful.

Monday, December 09, 2013

Another princess in my life

Monday post the princess invasion was a travel day to Boulder. I was off to meet another princess in my life - Miss Valentine Lovato.  

Michael and Amanda Lovato have been
family since I met Amanda in 1998 in Switzerland - ITU triathlon worlds. I was a young teen just learning the ropes. Amanda was full on racing. Since then our husbands have been roommates in Austin, trainer together, vacationed together and this trip celebrated together about the new blessing in their life- their 6 week old daughter.

Seeing them as a family unit was beautiful. They are natural parents. I soaked in as much cuddle and love time that I could. I also made sure the super parents got out on a date because I know it's easy for new parents to never leave home. They snuck out for a movie date while Valentine and I enjoyed Hallmark Christmas movies. 

Babies have the life - eat sleep poop repeat. There is play and snuggle time in there too. 

I haven't been around a young infant that much in a long time. It was for sure a good reminder of what Zane and I will face if we get to have children in future. 

We did sneak out thanks to their very sweet doula, to get a mani/pedi to celebrate and also feel good! The snow started to fall that day (Tuesday) and we woke up to at least 6 inches.

The final two days of the trip I finally had enough energy after the packed weekend/week to get on the treadmill. 

This woodway treadmill is the best treadmill I have ever used. The belt allows your calves, feet etc to feel responsive yet the belt is soft and kind to your legs. Waking up Thursday to -11F meant amore time on this bad boy!

This was a special trip. So grateful for the opportunity to love on the Lovato family. I am already counting down to the next visit with this princess Valentine.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Merry Christmas- Marymount University

The Marymount XCTri team mascot ready for today's 1st annual holiday party. Loads of food, tree decorating and the Grinch movie.

A beautiful team-decorated tree. Special.

The Indomitable Spirit award went to 2 special ladies. They are fighters. 

Someone got pretty wiped out from all the socializing.

We are blessed to have a team that feels like family. It was sad a few athletes couldn't make it, but it was great the athletes could unplug the before Finals next week.

Our apartment is small but we all fit and could celebrate as a team. 2013 XC and Tri Fall season was special. This team has grown and is family to me. I love every bit of being Mama Terra and seeing my Coach husband in his element- working/achieving his dream.

I can't wait to see what the future holds, and to see the team grow each season.

Merry Christmas from the MUXCTri team!

Princess Invasion

My nieces, sister and brother in-law came for a visit the weekend after Thanksgiving. I called it the Princess Invasion because of the joy the sweet kiddos in my life bring me.

It was special to share the city I now call home with my family. And my niece Dwinny was excited for the slumber party at Auntie Yaya's apartment.

We got super Coach Castro away from his full plae at work to explore the zoo with us.  That was a treat for sure.

Princess Dwinny loved the metro - figuring out the different colored lines and what we had to do to get to our destination. 

Grateful The Lord blessed me with siblings. Having a brother and sister has been such a blessing to me. Especially as I get older. 

This photo says it all. Such an awesome weekend with family. Already counting down to the next Princess Invasion.

Monday rolled in quickly and I was off to Boulder to meet a very precious newborn  Princess.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Hard Core

These are the brave teenagers in our middle school run club. They braved the cold temperatures and rain yesterday so that we could enjoy a 3 mile adventure in NW DC. 

I loved their energy and laughter as we splashed through puddles and made our way through the city. We are going to all run the Jingle Bell 8k together in a few weeks in full costume. I honestly never knew coaching would be so awesome. Don't really know how to explain it other than these kids know how to shine their light and I am grateful for each of them.

The day before we had 'feels like 17F' temperatures as I met my new 'run at dawn' training partner. I had never worn a scarf in training before, but this Borelli active infinity scarf was my secret weapon to keep my face and lungs warm. I am starting to really embrace these dark, headlamp runs with buddies. Having training partners really helps you get out the door when your warm bed tries to trick you to stay put. 

But if you really want to see some 'hard core' athletes- go on and watch the Driven Series. The Kenyan workout with Jake and Zane. It will give you a glimpse into what it takes. Being a pro isn't all coffee rides and naps in you normatec. It involves huge sacrifices, challenges and being out of your comfort zone to achieve the next level. 

So what makes you feel hard core? Is there something that drives you and makes you feel tougher when you fight through those daily workouts?