Sunday, February 22, 2015

The Next Chapter

It's a new year, and a lot has happened since my last post.  Recently a lot of people have asked what I'm up to, so:

That's All, Folks

As many of you probably know by now, I successfully defended my Ph.D. last month.  The final push was definitely the most stressful time I have ever been through, but I'm so proud of everything I managed to accomplish.  My family was able to make it to Madison from around the country for the defense, and it was such a pleasure to be able to share what I do and celebrate with the people I care most about.

What's up, Doc?

The two weeks after depositing my dissertation were spent taking a bit of a break from computers, catching up on all the things that got thrown aside over the second half of 2014, and making time for some much-needed mental relaxation.  I got to catch up on sleep and spend some quality time with my favorite guy.  Stress and lack of rest wreak such havoc on the body!  I'm finally feeling like my systems have recovered.

As of February 1, I'm on an appointment as a postdoctoral research associate at UW that will probably last through the summer.  Largely, that means that I have the time and support to augment my dissertation research a little bit and work on getting that research published in peer-reviewed journals.  I should get another 3 papers out of the process, so it will be well worth the effort.  With my work load back down to a reasonable level, I also have more time to continue looking for a more permanent job that will form the next step in my career.  If you know of any good opportunities for a fun, active seismologist, I'm all ears :)

I have also been using my newly-discovered free time to begin the adventure of getting back into shape.  I sat down with my coach, Bill, a couple of weeks ago to discuss my (still loose) plans for the season, and I'm so excited to get back into a routine of balancing life, work, and triathlon training.  As a staff member, I can even resume workouts with the Wisconsin Triathlon Team: those kids are fast!  After a few weeks of base training on my own, I'm back on a plan as of this past week.  I even threw in a little race today to see where I'm at.  So far I've been seeing steady progress, which is the fun part (if you could say there is one) about being out of shape- the gains are pretty quick and noticeable as you reintroduce consistency and start to rebuild volume and intensity.  I think a lot of the ease with which I'm getting my speed back (endurance will take longer....) is due to incorporating strength work at Functional Integrated Training.  Their MATT classes have continued to be my favorite workouts of the week over the past month.  Most importantly, the staff understands how to work with athletes to eliminate individual weaknesses and help people to move more efficiently.

A photo posted by Sbr Coaching (@sbrmadison) on

My primary athletic goal this year is to enjoy the journey.  To me, that encompasses three main things:
  • appreciating the little steps I take in the right direction, instead of comparing my current fitness to what it has been or what I'd eventually like it to be, 
  • incorporating a lot of variety into both my training and my race schedule, and
  • keeping things flexible.

With that said, I plan to race at least a couple times at the half distance this year, because that's my favorite.  I'd like to compete in a few races I've never been to before.  So far I'm eyeing Challenge Atlantic City, Challenge Maine, Challenge Pocono Mountains, Challenge Rancho Cordova, and Challenge Florida.  Friends, if you're interested in traveling to any of these with me, let me know!

with Wisconsin Tri friend Michael at the Winter Wonderland Indoor Tri

No comments :

Post a Comment