I just returned home from a weekend in Canada, which is where my peak race is this year (Ironman Mont-Tremblant). It can be difficult to train when on vacation, but the family we were staying with was most accommodating. On Friday, I needed to do an open water swim. Luckily, we were staying right on Lake Manitoulin. I threw on my wetsuit and jumped in. Holy cow! COLDEST WATER EVER! My toes quickly became numb and that little voice inside my head said, “You can’t do this!” I wondered if the voice was right. I needed to swim for one hour, and my friend and her son were going to follow me on paddle boat. I decided I could at least try, and then if I got too cold, I could just jump in the paddle boat. So I got started. The lake was quite pristine. I could see all the way to the bottom for quite some time. It was mostly rocky at the bottom and surprisingly, I saw no seaweed. I kept chugging along, checking my watch every once in a while, and finally, 30 minutes came. It was time to turn around! On the way back, I couldn’t really spot our camp, so I had no idea how close or far we were. Luckily the paddle boat guided me back in safely. Upon arrival, they had the hot tub open and ready for me. After about 30 minutes in the hot tub, I could feel my heels again.
The next day I was headed out for a 12 mile run. Or rather, 20K (when in Rome…) I headed out on a beautiful dirt road. I treated myself to a listen on my iPod, which I try not to use often since I can’t use it in a race. Suddenly, something caught my eye right by my left foot. I had scared a tiny baby deer who must’ve been resting just off the road. The startled deer ran about 40 feet in front of me, then turned around. When I see animals when I’m out running, I usually just freeze so that they hopefully feel less threatened. The little deer stared at me for quite some time, then started running, fast, RIGHT AT ME! I didn’t know what to do! The good news was, it was tiny. The bad news was, I was sure the mom deer was somewhere close, watching this encounter. I didn’t have much time to process all of this, and the deer stopped right in front of me. I could reach my hand out and touch it if I wanted to. It started making cooing noises. It was so sweet. We just looked at each other and finally I said, “Well, do you want to go for a run with me?” She cooed a little more, and then we parted ways.
And so although it was difficult to get out the door and do my workouts while on vacation, I made some invaluable memories, and got to see things that no one else got to see.