Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Target: track!

So an interesting thing happened to me yesterday at the track. Now don't go and get your hopes too high - my life isn't that interesting. But upon later reflection, it made me laugh.

Or perhaps it was because in my post-workout-induced-haze (yes, we all go there from time to time, especially when running 1/4 mile circles a la lab rat), things just seemed 'funnier'. Yeah, that was it.

Yesterday morning, I headed out towards one of two running tracks (that I know of) on Marine Corps Station Camp Pendleton. I figured the scenery would look great (mountains in the background - yeah!) and that running on base would give me a little *extra* motivation to go *fast*, (as portions of my next race take place on base).

Wow. It rhymes!

Actually, (and here's the kicker), I was hoping to reward myself with some post-track-workout-sushi from the commissary. Out of all the places that we've lived, I've gotta say that Camp Pendleton's grocery store does the best sushi. Nothing erases the pain of track repeats like shrimp, tuna, and salmon nigiri! (At least that's what I kept telling myself as I huffed and puffed my way around the damned circle).

After parking, walking half a block to the track sporting my bright pink compression socks (yeah - on a Marine base, that certainly got a lot of looks), and completing my 2 mile warm up, I was ready to go.

Nothing too exciting to mention about the workout. Um, it hurt? Aaand - I pushed it? I felt steady and strong...? Not really *fast* per se, just 'steady'. And 'strong'. I'm realizing that with Ironman training, fast just isn't the adjective of choice. But steady and strong - perhaps solid would be a bit more appropriate. Yeah - that's it. I felt solid.

(Let's just hope I feel that way at mile 18 of the run during Ironman CDA! Yikes!)

One of the things I DID notice though, were all the helicopters flying above and near by. The helo squadrons and runway were a few miles away, and I figured the choppers above were just part of the flight pattern. I amused myself by trying to figure out which models of helicopter were flying.

Remember: Nate does this for a living. At LEAST I should be able to identify the type of helo he flies. After all, he's pretty darned good when it comes to triathlon-lingo.

I was pretty darned proud of myself when I noticed the two different types of Hueys flying: the "N" version (1980s model, smaller engines, two rotor blades, makes a whomp-whomp-whomping noise) and the "Y" version (2008 version, huge engines, four rotor blades, and makes a loud humming noise...due to the four rotors instead of two. Nathaniel flies this one). Gold stars for me!

Later on, I noticed more Hueys, a few Cobras, one CH-46, and a Shitter. Yes, in the Marine Corps, there is actually a helicopter called "The Shitter". (The CH-53 referred to as this, because it 1) drags its rear tail rotor and 2) expels a cloud of yucky-looking smoke.) Every time I see one, I think to myself, "There goes The Shitter!"

Come to think of it, I think I know a few people who share this quality as well... hhhmmmm.....

Insert your own comment here_____________________.

Well, one thing lead to another, a few more *solid* runs completed, warm up finished, sushi picked up (along with a few other necessities), and I was on my way home.

Later when Nathaniel got home, he mentioned that in his SIMULATOR, he was working on target practice. I guess its a good thing that they make him practice his shooting before he goes out in the helicopter, right? Kind of like attempting to do the fancy ITU-style bike mount without practicing. Disaster, otherwise.

Trust me on that one, folks.

"So where did you shoot?" I asked, while paging through my book.

"Actually, we were initially taking fire from the Hospital, but later we noticed it was coming from the track. So I blew up the track."

That got my attention. The book (Elizabeth Kostova's "The Historian" - I'm on round 2) was put down.

"You do realize I was running on that track today, right?" I replied, wondering what he would say.

He just grinned.


And that was our interesting coincidence. Right around the time I was running my *solid* track workout and seeing all sorts of helicopters overhead, my husband was simulating his heart out, blowing up the same track I was running on. Excellent.

Good practice for us both, I suppose. Solid training all around. And an interesting coincidence. Like we were BOTH tearing it up. Well - he was in the simulator, and me - well, "tearing it up" as much as any person training for Ironman can.

Maybe just a little *solid* tearing up, though.


D said...

HAH! Nice.

Mama Simmons said...

Funny story.

You should have your husband get himself transferred out to Oahu... you could be my training partner! Trust me, there's great sushi here!!! :)

Missy said...

I shot my wife today??? I pretended to shoot my wife today? She was a pink target and looked like a bullseye on the track? Mmmm, so funny for so many reasons...remember the day I 'shot' you. Sorry, long swim work out and I'm punchy right now;)

ADC said...

Wow, you do know the lingo. Funny, I have actually been to that Commissary - haven't tried sushu but thw sushi (in particular dumplings) from West Point Commissary are amazing.


Next time you better duck!

Heidi Austin said...

hahah i laughed out loud when i read this. my husband is in flight school too! silly military guys!

runningyankee said...

too funny! if you would have known it was him would you have zig zagged a little more? love it. how many husbands would scream for that opportunity!

Kim said...

A friend one taught me about The Shitter. Ha! I can't believe I know what that is now! Too funny about Nate. Hope you still got to enjoy that post-track sushi for your job well done~ Sorry I had to run yesterday but I do appreciate you calling so much. So great to hear your voice. Thanks for chatting, I needed it.

Charisa said...

Awesome!! good practice for you both. And who knew there is a helicopter called the shitter - that is funny stuff!!

Laura said...


Molly said...

I admit, I linked to your blog via Maija's tri blog, and this entry made me laugh! I figured if I was going to keep reading your blog, as an avid/obsessive tri blogger, it seemed polite to introduce myself.
Anyway,the idea of being in CA and training just makes me so jealous... I visited a friend out in Edwards on an air force base a couple years ago and it was the best days of training I've ever had.
So yeah- loving your blog, and hello!

Mer! said...

HA! SO the coincidence!!!

Dave and I love the sushi from the Miramar Commissary so i'm sure Pendleton is the same....I can't believe we've eaten sushi from a grocery store, but I swear it's authentic, it is REALLY good!!! =0

Miss you!!