A Travellerspoint blog

April 2014

Racing. Life & Living It

St Petersburg, Florida

rain 50 °F

Q. What goes “Thump, Thump, Thump”, costs $200 and will make you wish you had forgone getting dressed up that morning and stuck to the trusty pocket-free athletic look?

Give Up?

A. Your iPhone beginning the dry –cycle, after taking a 50minute cleansing soak while tucked away in your skirt pocket.

That was 8pm Wednesday night. By 10pm I had a new phone, which was still slightly useless since all my contacts are apparently NOT in the “cloud” For the time being I can call approximately 5 people: Mom, Dad, two ex-boyfriends and my best friend from 5th grade. Maybe I’ll make it a point from here on out to build up the brain-powered address book. But at least I had an alarm for my early morning venture to DIA. I got home to break down the bike and pack for this race, a few days back home and of course driving across the country. Power nap and it was already morning.

The flight was less than smooth. Asking the flight attendants to take their seats is one thing, no worries. But 3, 4, 5, messages from the captain asking those attendants to pick up their phones makes you a littttttle bit uneasy (especially as the gingerale two aisles up takes a nose dive to the floor.)

Pre-Race Prep

90 minute ride on the course

Pool swim @ the aquatic center
Hour ride easy with brick run


Start time open water swim
Fell asleep for 2 hours
Rode an hour and an easy brick


Bike check-in, enjoyed sun-set, dinner and melatonin.

Race Recap

1.) St. Anthony’s is my favorite race of the year.

Woke up @ 4am, down to transition for 5:15 to set-up. I was racked next to the girl who won the past 2 years, a couple girls who raced very strong at Clermont, and 3 girls who were top 5 at Hy-Vee last year. As always, St. A’s brings a stacked field.


Men & Women EA’s started together at 7:00am. Which means the first few hundred yards of the swim were rougher than usual. Those darn boys. After the initial frenzy I slowly began to find my groove, and by the half-way point I was starting to catch-up and pass small pockest of swimmers. Came into T1 with just one woman’s bike off the rack! The thought of not having to play 'catch-up' on the bike and be able to work on expanding a gap was pretty exciting.

Was able to get a good idea as to where I was within the group with the several turn-arounds on the course. About half way through I was passed, “Shit, where the heck did she come from….” After several passes back and forth I realized that those damn heart rate straps sometimes just LOOK like a sports bras, and in a sport where everyone has silky smooth legs....common mistake. Anyways, I built a gap on him just in case. ; )

Negative split it with a new best 10k time = Happy Athlete

Placed 2nd in the EA division. First place being an incredible athlete who had just given up her pro-card after 25 years of elite racing, including earning a world champion title. Plugging my time into the pro field I would have placed 11th, which is encouraging. I'd say things are moving in the right direction, jumping off of a plateau for sure. Can't wait to see what the rest of the season holds.

Post Race

The greatest gift you could ever give someone is your time. It is one element of life that we cannot 'get back' when it is gone. Thankful to have spent Sunday post-race sharing time, laughing loud, laying in the grass, splashing in the ocean and stumbling into a fairy tale even for a short while.

Here's to peace, road trips & getting faster,

Posted by AubreyJ 15:26 Archived in USA Comments (0)

List It Out.

Turn on your brain and your heart

overcast 65 °F

In Massachusetts one of the biggest and most important roles I fulfilled was "Advisor" to the Outdoor Wilderness Leader youth group. The "OWLs". Now this goes way further back than just a handful of years. To best paint this picture you first need to understand a little bit of where I come from.


Wilderness Experiences Unlimited

This was and continues to be more than my families business. It is our lifestyle. It represents passion, challenge, dreams, fulfillment, stress, growth, change, constancy, and so much more. I was lucky enough to grow up immersed in adventure sports. Skiing at two, rock-climbing at three, riding on the back of my dads training bike at ten months....I was scuba certified at the age of 12.....with my grandfather who was 75. My dad and I went sky-diving on the day of my senior prom because it made no sense to me to spend hundreds of dollars on a dress when you could jump out a plane instead. Mom and I have led groups of divers to Australia, Egypt and the Philippines. As a family, I have to say we're an ass-kicking trio. Anyways.


A big part of our business was and continues to be the youth group. Founded on the belief that Mother Earth needs our youth to stand up for what is right, and use their voices to speak for those that don't have voices of their own. Environmental education and value clarification were keystone.

As a toddler, I was the OWL 'Mascot'. Climbing underneath chairs, sitting on laps and getting piggy-backs from teens of the 80s. As a little kiddo the OWLs and Summer Camp staff were my biggest and most crucial role models, and continue to be with their accomplishments to this very day. As I got older and took on more responsibility the groups of kids brought me genuine hope for the future. Teens embracing one another for their differences, being passionate about protecting the natural world and being able to "unplug" for days at a time to sleep close to the earth.

The OWLs are my little brothers and sisters. And distance hasn't changed it. I love the letters, email updates and phone calls I still get....mostly when high-school drama strikes again and a listening ear is needed. I've even grown used to the SOOO high-school snap chats. (Do I really need to see a picture of your teacher drawing on the white board? No. But I love you anyway ; P )


101 Background Complete.

Now. 'List It Out'

(*You'll want a scrap piece of paper and a pen)

Often in OWLs, activities were meant to challenge your mind and encourage you to look within.
Self-awareness and Self-confidence makes for some strong, devoted and incredible leaders. This is an activity that we would do every year, and I want to share it with whoever is still reading this damn thing.

1. On your paper create the following headings.

3 Pivitol People

3 short-term goals (6 months)

3 mid-term goals (2 years)

3 long-term goals (5 years+)

3 Defining Moments

2 Things I Love About Myself

2 Things I Am Working On Within Myself

If I could give one sentence of advice it would be......

2. Spend some real time on each topic. Reflect on the past year of your life and project forward. What you accomplished? Where you've been? What made you soar? When did you stumble? How did you get up from those stumbles? Who has made an impact on your heart along the way? Then thoughtfully fill in the blanks.

3. When you are done, envelope it, date it and stash it somewhere safe. Repeat next year ; )

It is amazing to look at these over time. I have a handful of these dating back over 15 years. To see the personal growth, identify trends, and see how much so things change is so freakin' cool. It's never too late / you're never too old to spend some time taking a "Self-Inventory"


That's all I have to offer for a Throwback Thursday.

Take time to look back at yourself.

And so continues 2014...."The Year of Me"

Here's to peace, faith and working hard

Posted by AubreyJ 15:55 Archived in USA Tagged nature family youth introspection leadership growing_up self_reflection environmental_education Comments (0)

New chapter? Nope.

This is going to be a whole new book babbyyyyyy

sunny 60 °F

48 Hours of Ecstasy

It feels a little silly to be writing a race recap as I am already prepping to travel for my next event. I guess it just goes to show how busy things have been, how fast time goes by and how much ass April is kicking. Late or not, South Beach is a race that I can't bypass an update, because it was a big one.


So. Here is the abbreviated version.

Pre: Nell & I set our 2am alarms. Sat in hotel room darkness to eat our dried up basmati rice and plain hard boiled eggs. It was anything but exceptionally delicious. But, by the end of the race we were both sold on the new rice/egg combo. Pre-race fuel up meal? Dialed! Alarm #2 went off around 5am. We had a brutal 20 yard walk to rack our bikes. Obviously heavy sarcasm, as our hotel could not have been more perfect. Then it was set-up, running drills, muscle activation and sneak into fancy hotels for a last minute bathroom stop.

Swim: Choppy with a bit of current. The phrase "Swimming treadmill of death" crossed my mind several times while out there. Not that times would reflect it, but given the conditions I was happy with my swim.

T1: The most miserable transition I've experienced. I was just slow and sloppy getting out of the water to my bike. Oh well.

Bike: Love. Love. Love. Had a strong bike, was able to pass a couple women in the pro field and hold my own. Have I mentioned how much I love cycling? Ok. Good.

T2: Bit of an obstacle course to try and get by the traffic and congestion that was now becoming transition.

Run: I normally don't LOOOVE running. But I did that day. Even with the mile+ in the beach sand. First time racing without my Garmin on. Way better for me to just trust myself and go by feel. I felt steadier and more in control not being a mental slave to what my 'average pace' was reading.

Finish: Huge goal was met. 1st place overall amateur woman. Earning my professional racing license. Holy shit. Cloud nice anyone? I called family members an hour later, to be sure results weren't going to change. There were cheers and tears. It was incredible.


The next 24 hours:

People watch on the beach.
Drink Mojtos.
Long Run.
Get a tattoo.
Sign contracts and became a HOMEOWNER in Boulder, CO.

So. There you have it.
Miami. Racing. New Books.

Quote of the moment:

Here's to peace, true Italian Espresso, and horizon sunrises,
~Auber McBobbers

Posted by AubreyJ 07:30 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Phase II: "You think you can Miami?"

sunny 40 °F

I’ve struggled with how best to describe this ‘gem’ of a place.
So, let’s see if you can figure it out?


SoBo Quiz:

1.The first thing you will see upon arrival to South Beach?
A. Flocks of very large women in very small bathing suits parading the street
B. Triple figure automobiles parked the length of the street
C. Cocktail drinks so big you literally need either a friend or a serious strength program in order to attempt lifting it.
D. All of the above.

2.Happy hour lasts from _______________
A. 10am-Noon
B. 4pm – 5:30pm
C. 24 Hours

3.At any given moment, in any given direction you will see which of the following?
A. Someone taking a ‘kissy-face selfie’
B. A shirtless dude who loves the creatine
C. A pair of women doing the holding hands lean, stumbling ass shake drunken shuffle.
D. Purple pleather leggings, rhinestone 6’’ pumps and tops proclaiming phrases such as “Sexy and I know it”
E. All of the above.

4.Going to the beach is ________________
A. Tranquil and relaxing way to pass the afternoon
B. An up & coming reality show entitled “Tan and Trashy”
C. An affirmation that society as a whole is failing
D. Anything imaginable except answer “A”

5.In order to live in South Beach you need….
A. A surgically enhanced body.
B. A surgically enhanced liver.

6.Complete the location where you would hear the following..
A. “Can I Snapchat your boobs….”
B. “Giiiiirrrl you fast but you be packing a small ass”
C. “I’m going to tap, tap, tap, tap tap, tapppppp dat assssssss”
D. “I be going to BO-LI-VIA. Come wit me. You wanna go to BOLIVIA o’ what”

Seriously? Seriously?


1. D
2. C
3. A
4. D
5. B
6. A. Topless 15yr old at the beach
(Where the heck are your parents?)
B. Race course at mile 2.5. Sung as a rap repeatedly….for 4 hours?
C. Ocean drive boardwalk, anywhere at anytime.
D. Waiting at the crosswalk

It still doesn't do it justice. But South Beach is an interesting place for sure.
Can't wait to race there next year....for my first pro race!?!

Next Up:
Phase III: 48 Hours of Ecstasy

Here's to peace, hot-tubing & moving forward

Posted by AubreyJ 09:15 Archived in USA Tagged vacation miami triathlon south_beach people_watching quiz reality_show ridiculous Comments (0)

Phase One: Snow to Silicon

You are not in the bubble anymore little one....

sunny 75 °F

Thursday morning started with New England like snow. The heavy, thick, slushy type of snow that is just plain gross. Timing for the South Beach Triathlon couldn't be more perfect. Nell & I were outta dodge just in time and onward to the land of sunshine.

Now. I have never been to Miami.
I will start with the blanketing statement of "This place is F-ing crazy"
I will follow up with the promise that an entry dedicated to capturing the sheer mayhem is in the future.

The SuperShuttle Reality Show

Us: "Umm.....so maybe if you take the half a dozen suitcases out of the van and load the bike boxes first...."
meanwhile: SuperShuttle attendant takes i-phone pictures of our cases.
Us: "The boxes will fit no problem, they just need to get loaded first......"
meanwhile: SuperShuttle attendant has thrown her hands up in the air exclaiming "I just needed to take a picture of dat, I don't even know how to describe what I be lookin' at over herre"
Us: "Ok....Sooooo, can we do some re-arranging....?" subtle laugther
meanwhile: "I'm gonna need to get my boss over here to check this out"
Us: Blank Stares

{Enter Boss Man} (*who is maybe pushing 20 years old and still obviously working on balancing that 'professional yet still thug' look)

Boss Man: "Is this all your bags"
Us: "This is everything we have, 4 bags"
Boss Man: "Cuz I was getting the story that you had some bags on da other side....and that was causing the problem"

  • We are still slightly uncertain as to what the "other side" was referring to. Perhaps some guests frequently like to scatter their baggage all around ground transportation so when it is time to load it up it's more of a scavenger hunt adventure?

In any case, after 30 minutes and two shuttles who threw in the towel on us we were on our way.

On our way to a private tour of Pine Street.....
Which is apparently where Justin Beiber got arrested for racing cars and blowing coke not too long ago.
"Hashtag O-M-G"

Assorted Incidents / Experiences

Our hotel is pretty far away from transition.....a solid 10 yards.
We'll have to set our alarms extra early to get down there in time.


Walking distance to a pretty great outdoor saline lap pool. Got in a nice PM workout Thursday after some bike shop adventures, because what fun would travel racing be if you didn't have to problem solve something!?!

A scantily clad bachelorette party attempting various 'selfies' while on their segways....yeah, visualize that for a second....caused a near death experience while out on the bikes today. Skateboarders 'doing tricks' also get the blood pumping. But we got a good shake out spin in and nobody was pancaked to the boardwalk in the process.

Being down on the beach in our race kits drew some attention. It was like people didn't know whether to check us out or give us the awkward disapproving glare. So we got a little bit of both, including some photo requests....

I love the mountains. But my heart sure has a soft spot for the ocean.

Up Next:

Phase Two: "So you think you can Miami" & Assorted Race Prep
Phase Three: "48 Hours of Ecstasy"

Quote of the Moment:
“Having a Vision is not enough. It must be combined with imagination, determination, faith, hope and passion. It is not enough to just stare up at the stars..." Victoria June

Here's to peace, finding a genuine Italian espresso cafe, and some old school Micheal Jackson,

Posted by AubreyJ 21:48 Archived in USA Tagged travel sunrise cycling airports preparation miami partying triathlon south_beach motivation trainining open_water_swimming Comments (0)

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