You may have noticed that that I affectionatey refer to Michelle as PIC. It stands for “partner in crime”, I’m not really even sure when it came about. Maybee when she started her blog? I don’t know. She calls me PIC too. It’s rather fun. Sometimes I call her Fordy-Ford, or Michelley-Elley.

Michelle and I met shortly before our first ever trip to USAT Age-Group Nationals in 2007. That was way back when I had only done two sprints and Michelle was still riding this red bike with like Shimano 105 on it (I don’t mean to offend anyone…well maybe I do a little bit).

Breakfast two days before Nationals in 07

We were roomies in this totally cheep extended stay hotel right next to Nike in Portland. We both had what I would call super solid races, but even bigger than that we began a friendship that both of us never realized would be so much fun.

I think this was probably the last time we got totally sloshed right after a race…we are much more dedicated now (we are the middle two).

We trained together occasionally, mostly on weekend bike rides. Michelle was a working girl with a demanding job, but she was focused and nailed her workouts.

We went through a Twinkie phase (identical, comes in a pack of two). Almost all the group pictures we were standing next to each other, and we had matching helmets, blue bikes (she got rid of the crummy red one…no offense) and ponytails. Check it out.

Twinkies we are

Scary huh?

We came back to nationals in Portland in 2008 ready to kick ass, and qualify for Team USA. We had Australia on our minds. For the first time we allowed another person into our nationals lair, Tyler.

PIC, Me, and Tyler

He proved to be an acceptable addition. It also meant that PIC and I shared a bed for the first time. And we learned that we sleep well together, who would have thought? Probably a fact that our husbands try not to think about too often…or maybe they do. I don’t know and this is going south…

So we both really rocked the house at Nationals, it was the same course as the year before and PIC knocked 16+ minutes off her time, and I took off a little over 6. PIC nabbed that Team USA slot, and I missed it by one, but got it back in the lotto.

Early morning pre race, we are together, there’s a shock!

Several months after Nationals, the best thing EVER happened to my athletic career (and let’s be honest, it’s all about me). PIC got laid off, SWEEET, full time training partner. I think this is when the term “PIC” came about. That year was about becoming super stud kick ass athletes and helping each other get there. We started on the bikes.

Mt.Evans in the back, we two man teamed it all over the place that spring.

We really learned a lot about each other. Usually we knew more about where each other was at than we knew about ourselves. I knew when she was blitzed, she knew when I needed to eat. We shared gels, we took turns on each others wheels, and we had so much fun.

We raced across the county, heck the world, together. We always found a way to get our PIC time even if we weren’t rooming together. We found a camaraderie that year that was sorta “the next level”. I think in the beginning we may have felt a little competitiveness against each other, but any and all of that dissipated throughout last year. When we became PIC’s things changed and we helped each other through the hard times, and the hard races, and we celebrated with each other through the good ones. It helped that we had numerous good performances through the year. At Kansas, we qualified for Clearwater together.

We went to Nationals for a 3rd year together, we added Beth and Tyler to the room, which meant again…PIC and I were sharing a bed. Which apparently meant great races for the both of us. PIC taking 5th in her AG, and me 14th, both earning TEAM USA spots if we so choose to take them. Seeing her on the podium made me feel like I was on the podium, I kid you not.

Red hair extension…it was for CHARITY!

We went to Worlds in Australia with our different families, but we found a way to hook up and train everyday together. Training in unfamiliar adds a whole different crazy factor to things, but when we were together we seemed to have so much more confidence. It didn’t matter that we were riding on the wrong side of the road, we handled it together and we laughed a lot. Meeting up with Michelle was like a having a piece of home with me.

In AUS, training, note that we now have matching TT bikes, and non matching helmets, since I crashed and broke mine.

I think having each other there at World Championships paid off, we went 19th for PIC, and 30th for me, in our age group, in the world. And you know, PIC slept over in my hotel room the night before, I’m thinking that’s why we raced so well.

And at the end of the season we found each other in Clearwater, out there on the race course, and ran together for part of the race. It was almost poetic.

Michelle and I have learned through the years the value of having a training partner. I don’t think either of us could have ever imagined just how tight we would become. Going forward this year we have switched coaching, and we have switched team affiliation. It was a process that we relied heavily on each other to get through. Lots of leaning on each other, and a fair amount of tears.

It wasn’t easy, but you live, you learn, and you try to move forward with an open heart. With Michelle, I’m not afraid to tell her the truth, and she knows I’m in her corner 100%. I’m so extatic that the recent changes in our athletic career have brought us even closer together. I couldn’t imagine racing in a uniform that is different from hers, so I’m pretty stoked that this year we will be Twinkies again.

Having the same coach will enable us to continue to train together and to help each other achieve our goals. We have been very upfront with our new coach (who likes upfrontness) and he has instructed us to tattle on each other to our heart’s content (when it pertains to training). He seems to “get” our relationship and has an idea on how to use it to make each of us stronger.

We feel like we are a little mini-team this year. Our sponsors are the same, we represent them together, and although we are training towards different goals (as we have most years) I have no doubt that this year will yield lots more fun and silly pictures.

Thank you PIC, Michelley-elley, Fordy-Ford for all of your support, for being my “honesty” meter, for not making things harder than they need to be, for traveling with me, planning with me, schooling me in swimbikerun, for not holding it against me when I school you in bikerun, for sharing recipes, and photos, and lessons learned.

Here’s to another year of fun, we’re gonna kick ass!

2010 Epic Fun

What epic things am I going to endeavor in during the year 2010?

2010 is a big year. Ten years in the 2000’s. What better than to make it extra special by running, biking and swimming all over the place.

My 2010 schedule is set, and I’m sure that you want in on some of the action. The year will be divided between epic adventures, and kick butt racing.


~ Moab 100 miler, 3/27 – 3/28 (running)

~ Double Crossing of the Grand Canyon, Monday 4/19

~ Ride Across Colorado in 3 days, 470 miles, 7/16-7/18, taking the north route through Poudre Canyon/Steamboat.

~ Double Summit of Mt. Evans, bike up then run up, late August

~ Something in the summer in the Tahoe region. Not quite sure yet, but the Tahoe Rim Trail will be incorporated. Still scheming.

KICK BUTT RACING (the big races)

~ Rev3 Knoxville, 5/8, Olympic distance

~ Rev3 Middlebury CT, 6/5, 1/2 Iron distance

~ IM Coeur d’Alene, 6/27

~ A second Iron Distance Race, either the big island one, or this one.

~ USAT Age Group Nationals, 9/25

~ IM Arizona, 11/21

So, who’s in for some fun? Did my Grand Canyon video last year make you want to join me? My goal this year is to inspire others to do a little more than they thought was possible. To that aim, all my adventures will be well supported, well schwaged, and well planned. If you want to come along, contact me, ask questions, leave a comment, hunt me down…

Pink Chase

Wow the Pink Chase was a blast. Michelle, Amy and I totally ripped it up out there. You all helped us raise almost $1,500 for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

Pre Costumes (before we went undercover):

And Undercover bunnies:

The costumes were a huge hit and nearly everyone we made eye contact with throughout the day said something to us about bunnies, or boobies, or both. We were like the Pink Chase spokesmodels, people were eating it up. I think all of our cheeks are sore from smiling.


We were totally stoked that our ears held up the entire day. I had sewed wire into them and duct taped them onto our helmets. Without the ears…I just can’t say what would have happened.


Of course we triathlete/ski bunnies were out to win it. But when we saw that some teams had raised in the $3,000-$5,000 range we knew that if they planned to ski hard, and dressed up reasonably well, we might get beat. Its always going to go to those who bring in the loot.


We gave it our all and we skied our tails off. We literally skied as fast as we knew how the entire day. We gave Michelle one potty break, but other than that it was eating lunch and snacks (Ritter Sport Chocolate) on the lift (thanks AMY for pizza) and bombing down the runs. The skis that Amy scored for us (the K2 Burnin’ Luv) were awesome (check out Powder7.com). They were so fast, and we felt very matchy matchy.


We covered 44,890 vertical feet. We missed one “hot chocolate” checkpoint worth 1,000 vertical. We actually went there, but they told us they were out of coco and didn’t give us a sticker. If we had that sticker, we would have won the most vertical for the day, we lost it by less than 200 vertical feet). Not bad for a bunch of tri geeks.


Our costumes however, they were unbeatable and we were awarded the grand prize in that category. Too bad the prize is manicures, and well, we’re triathletes. Do you know how long a manicure lasts when you swim every day? About 1 day.


However, we can’t thank Smith Optics enough. They hooked us up with helmets and goggles, both of which were fantastico (the Anthem Goggles and the Intrigue Helmets)!


We had a blast ripping it up. I think that we were one of the best teams out there, but we were edged out by the notorious and Vail residing “Snow Angles”. However, we swapped cameras with them for one lift, and let’s just say, they will remember the Bunnies for Boobies team for a long time. They will probably also never swap cameras with someone again!

Thanks to Tyler who came out and skied with us for two runs, we have a video of our day! THANK YOU TYLER!

Pink Chase Ski Race from sonjawieck on Vimeo.

Many thanks to all of you who donated to our cause. We tried so hard to win for you all. We had the best costumes, we pretty much skied more vertical than everyone out there, and we came armed with the donations you provided. We are eternally happy for the experience, and on behalf of the entire team we wish we could have brought home the grand prize for you all.

Last Minute Beg

This is a last minute plea.

Tomorrow is the “Pink Chase Fundraiser” at Keystone resort. Amy, Michelle and I will be going for the grand prize which is a combination of costumes, vertical skied, and FUNDRAISING. Our team is currently sitting in 7th place for fundraising, but is only a few hundred dollars from 4th place.

If you were thinking about donating, today is the day! Please-O-Please.

You can click on the box on the right of my blog, or you can go here to our team fundraising page.


Death by Treadmill and Chocolate

PIC (who has a new blog with the best url evah, check it out) and I wanted to do a little track workout today. I’ve been running with PIC as she trains for the Arizona Rock and Roll Marathon, and in the spirit of getting her quick we did a little speed work. The problem? It looks like this outside. Seriously?


So, we hit up the matching treadmills at my apartment complex gym. It was awesome, we brought some tunes, cranked up the music, and off we went. I found out for the first time that my treadmill maxed out at 10mph. I ran 3 of the 4 0.5 mile efforts that we did with the treadmill maxed at 10. I think it’s easier to run this fast on the treadmill, you just spend a little more air-time and let the treadmill go zooming under you. PIC rocked it as well, she was uber close to maxing out, but the girls’ gotta save something for another day.

When we got back to my apartment there was a package waiting on the door step. Humm? What could it be. I opened it up and it’s CHOCOLATE. Lots and lots of CHOCOLATE! Oh my! PIC and I immediately start digging in. Ritter Sport emailed me a few days ago to ask if I would review their chocolate. Humm, I thought long and hard, I had a family meeting with Troy, and after much deliberation, we finally decided that we could accept some chocolate into the house. NOT!!! I was responding to the Ritter Sport email within pico-seconds. SEND ME CHOCOLATE!!!


The thing is, I’m an endurance athlete, so I’m gonna put the Ritter Sport chocolate through the ringer. This weekend, the Ritter Sport will experience extreme skiing as I compete in the Pink Chase at Keystone. We’ll see if it can handle it.

Ritter Sport also offered some chocolate for my blog readers. I’m a sharer! So, there will be a massive chocolate giveaway at some point soon. Only the best for my bloggy peeps!

Guest Blogging for Amy!

Today is an exciting day! After the Race for the Cure this weekend Amber from Mile High Mamas asked if I would write a guest blog post for Breast Cancer awareness month. I wrote it up and today my post is on the front page of Mile High Mamas. Read the full story here.

Please give it a read, and maybe a comment, if you so choose. I feel very thankful that I was given this platform to spread Amy’s story, and thus increase her “sphere of love and support”.

Race for the Cure was a huge success, with Team Amy’s Chemo Sabes raising more than $8,000 and walking with 87 Amy supporters. Amy herself was out in full Amy glamor, pushing Ty, with a huge smile on her face.


I also was lucky to win the overall woman in the Race for the Cure 5K…in all my baldness. The highlight was that 9news interviewed me and I got to tell Amy’s story to the greater Denver area. We are working on trying to get 9news to upload the footage, so Amy can actually see it. Cross your fingers on that one.


And, next on tap. What does epic skiing & breast cancer research have to do with each other? It’s called the Pink Chase Fundraiser and my two favorite stud triathlete/skier girlfriends and I are teaming up together for a day of epic proportions. On Dec 12th, teams of 3 women will compete against each other by trying to ski the most vertical feet, raise the most money, and have the best costumes, all for The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. You can count on Pro triathlete and ski shop owner Amy D, skiing before she could walk and top 20 in the world triathlete PIC, and me to bring our A game! We need a name…help!

(Donation page will be posted when we sign up…after we come up with a NAME!!!)

Read the guest blog at Mile High Mamas here.

Sport Science


Have you received any of these crazy Sport Science shirts in your race packet lately? You can tell because they have the little bright yellow tag on the sleeve. Last year our Phidipides shirts were Sport Science and I found myslelf working out in it a lot. At first glance it looked like your run of the mill cotton t-shirt. The first time I put it on I couldn’t believe how well it fit. They make women’s and mens shirts separately. The other track club members were pretty jazzed about it too.

A little about their philosophy:

In 2003, we launched sport science™ smarter performance™ for the fun-having, sport-playing, running, walking, hiking, commuting, climbing, training, traveling, going, doing active people of the world.

Our mission is to create products that do more so you can do more – clothing that can go anywhere and do anything, not just in regards to function, but to comfort and style as well. When true technical performance fuses with incredible comfort and versatility, smarter performance™ is the result.

Then I worked out in it and I knew something was different about it. The fabric that Sport Science uses feels soft and nice like cotton, but it wicks. Normal race shirts are either cotton, or tech. I never feel like I can wear my race t-shirts that are tech shirts around town because they are a little thin and breezy, and somewhat see through. I definitely can’t wear the cotton race tshirts to workout in. Not for any considerable workout at least. But these sport science shirts really bridge the gap. Practical Coaching used this company for their shirts this year…I bought three!



Cruising through their website it looks like they make all different cuts of shirts. I would love to try out a sleeveless and a long sleeve, I definitely see a tied dyed shirt in my future, and the wool line looks really enticing.

Oh, and this isn’t just a chick thing. Troy has a habit of wearing things he likes over and over again until they die (usually beyond when they die). Despite the fact that our 17 hour training day shirts are pink, he wears it every other day (when he’s not wearing the grey Practical Coaching shirt). I haven’t told him it’s pink (he’s color blind). He hasn’t worn them out yet, and he said that if it was his choice he would wear only this brand of t-shirts. Pretty strong feelings from my mellow-smellow hubby!

If you haven’t raced a race that has Sport Science shirts you’ve got to find one! You wont be disappointed. If you know of a race that is putting Sport Science in their packets, leave the name and link in a comment below. And if you are Sport Science and you are reading this, I really love your product!

Troy’s Lucky Day!

Today was a huge day for Troy! Being that I am the competitive/exercise/outdoor junkie he always gets the shaft when it comes to new gear. He’s the last to get new ski boots, the last to get new outdoor clothes, and he always wears shoes until his toes are sticking out before he replaces them. It doesn’t help that he hates spending money on himself, and that I am sorta the opposite :). He’s such a martyr!

Not today!

Tax Refund Baby! Going to get him new boots at www.workbootsnerds.com

Troy has wanted a custom jacket and pants from Beyond ever since they sponsored me. I am sort-of your average everyday sized girl, and Troy is odd in every way. At 6 foot 4 he has a standard sized torso, and extremely long legs. He’s skinny skinny. He wears medium shirts, but needs them extra long in length. Do they make those? No sir.

Beyond is the perfect company for Troy. Besides the fact that their garments have the best construction I have ever seen in outdoor gear, it’s custom. completely custom. At non-custom prices. Sweeeeet.

So today we measured Troy, all 20 measurements they wanted.

And then we designed and built this:

and this:

The khaki color of the pants (not to be confused with kahiki…inside joke) will match the stripe on the sides of the jacket. He’s got custom pockets where he wants them. He added a waterproof zipper to the coat, and ski boot gaiters to the pants. This set up can take Troy from the slopes of Vail, to the ice falls in Ourey, to the peaks of Peru. It’s a versatile set up that he will get years and years (and knowing Troy…a few more years) out of it.

Congratulations baby on a year of hard work at Cigna, a year of shlepping around Annie gear to a million races, to becoming a much better skier, runner, and cyclist; for being a kind, humble, helpful guy, and for putting up with all my crap. I love you!

Sonja’s Christmas Picks

It’s December 2nd, the year has flown by, and Christmas is upon us. Wondering what to get the rock star athlete in your family? Here are my top picks for this holiday season…with a few perks along the way.

yhst-40534594257474_2031_81234.gifCore Concepts Clothing: Cadence Hoodie, Midtown, Carve, you name it and I love it. If fashion+function is a must have, these clothes hit the mark. AND, if some of your friends, or family members are a little TOO outdoorsy and a little LESS fashionista, then this is the perfect “hint hint”. Friends of my blog receive 20% off!!! Use coupon code at the online store: FF20OFF (that’s “20” as in the number, and “OFF” as in how much your saving)

beyond.jpgBeyond Technical Shells: Not everyone fits in normal sizes, especially lean and long (and hot) climber dudes (uhhh, and dudettes??). If you have an odd sized duck in your family, or need superb 100% guaranteed perfect fit, travel over to Beyond Clothing and design something for that odd duck…or duckette.

sigg.jpgSIGG Bottles: Now-a-days you gotta be using reusable water bottles and SIGG’s are the way to go. Especially for those kiddo hikers in your family, SIGG makes great children’s sippies. Right now they have free shipping on orders over $30, and they make the perfect stocking stuffer.

moons.jpgLuna Moons: These are really what every kick butt outdoor diva wants to train with. But, sometimes we just can’t rationalize blowing through 6 bags of them in a workout. So what do we do? We settle. We settle for other products, wishing all along that we had moons in our pocket. If you have a dirt diva on your shopping list, grab some moons for her stocking. She will smile, and you will see a little glint in her eye as she envisions her next trail run. Beware: do not stick Luna moons in your favorite dudes stocking unless you are the practical joking type, or your trying to hit on his girlfriend.

bpep.jpgZingermans Fantastic Bread: Mmmm. Bread! I was given a loaf of this YEARS ago as a Christmas gift and to this day it’s the most memorable gift I have ever received. They will actually ship a loaf of the most awesome bread to anywhere you need it to go. The Parmesan Pepper Bread is my favorite! Can anyone say “Carb-loading”?

Tufo Tubular Clincher Tires: They fit your normal clincher rims, you can stop dealing with the whole tire tube thing, and they are so stinkin’ resilient. I rode twenty miles on a MTB fire road on my road bike in these things. Say goodbye to flats, and build some muscle while you stretch these onto your rim for the first time. These tires are Ggrrreat!

pink.jpgZensah Pink Compression Legs: The recovery benefits of compression attire are proven. BUT, has it ever been this cute? These pink compression socks will make the endurance athlete that you snuggle up at night squeal with delight. Because seriously folks, the white medical ones you get from Rite Aid, well, they just don’t cut it.

left_bottles.jpgMix1 Drinks: These have saved my life. Okay, maybe I am stretching things a little bit, but (true statement) they have saved my workout. Some of those saved workouts have been quite extreme. 41 miles running on the Colorado Trail, 34 miles running in the Moab desert, 32 miles running on an Ultra Relay Team, these are “stay strong or suffer severely” events. I am a firm believer of incorporating protein into endurance events and Mix1’s are palatable and shelf stable. Besides, a case of them comes in a box and is easy to wrap.

Take care of your loved ones this season. Remember, when you have the right tools to train, you can chase your dreams. Give someone a gift this season that will encourage them to get outside. Cool Breeze, Fresh Air, that’s a happy life!

Core Concepts Wins the Apex Award!


Let me be the first of many to extend a HUGE congratulations to Core Concepts! Every year Polartec awards several high tech garments their prestigious Apex Award. This year Core Concepts Carve Full Zip jacket is sharing the podium with other stellar companies including Patagonia, Marmot, and Merrell.

As an avid wearer of the Carve Full Zip jacket let me just say this coat is top notch and extremely deserving of the Apex award. I have been product testing it for the last few months and have yet to uncover a flaw. It fabric is divine for us women, and the stylish details will leave your friends drooling…like my friends are! Right friends? Don’t worry, the Carve Full Zip goes on sale in September.

Congratulations to the Core Concepts crew and especially to owners Noah and Erin! You have been such a joy to work with and I know that as the years go by Core Concepts will become a household name in outdoor apparel. Keep up the great work and I can’t wait to see the Carve Full Zip walking around the streets of Boulder, or on the slopes in Vail. Because, when it comes to ‘Active. Life. Style’ you guys nailed it!