I just am. I'm intense. When I do something, I go all in. I push all my chips forward and say "double down". It's not that I'm risky. I'm just intense. So, in 2010 I unleashed my intensity on a rather daunting race schedule: 100 miler (because I wanted to) and 3 Ironmans. And when I qualified for Kona I focused (all) my intensity on training to do well there.

Nothing more intense than red Jellyfish! Annie, Mom and I viewed these at the San Francisco Academy of Sciences, can't really tell that they are jellys, can you?. After IMAZ I got really sick. I had warded off several colds towards the end of 2010 with Zicam, and Chuckie tea. So when I got sick after IMAZ I just let myself get sick. I said "Body, go to town, just get as sick as you want and I won't even try to mask your symptoms, I will just let you do what you want for once".

So I focused (intensely) my efforts into the couch. I didn't really leave the couch. There were a few days I didn't leave my parents house. Sometimes I went from couch, to hot tub, to bath tub, and back to couch. I was focused in my lack of activity. Thank goodness for grandparents to entertain Annie. Although we did get in lots of mommy/daughter snuggle time.

More cool jellys from the Academy of Sciences

By the time 10 days of that rolled around I was healed up and ready to delve into "the next thing". Where could I heave my intensity into next? I totally knew what it would be.

FOOD! I love food. I love good food. By the end of last season I was getting very basic in the food department. Troy was doing a lot of dinner duty, and I was doing a lot of Whole Foods salad bar duty. I was craving good food. Being that it is the offseason, I am taking this opportunity to explore some aspects of FOOD that intrigue me. For once I'm not going to need to worry that my daily eating will impact my training adversely. I can explore for once.

Holiday Mixed Grain Pilaf with Red Chard from Rich Rolls cookbook Jai Seed

You may be thinking cookies, and baking here, but it's quite the opposite. I love healthy, fresh, good, clean food. I've been intrigued by athletes like Rich Roll, and Scott Jurek who are bad asses and are vegan (even though I eat meat regularly). I'm intrigued by the term macrobiotic, and I don't even really know what that means.

Deep Dish Greens with Millet Crust from Terry Walters book Clean Start

So, I'm taking the Type A, intense, individual that I am, and I doing some dabbling into food. So what if I don't get "adequate protien" for a few days, so what if I don't get all my B12 in. I'm learning the way I like to learn, which is "hands on". I ask questions, I seek answers.

Seek first to understand. -Stephen Covey

I really love learning new things. I like to broaden my horizons. I don't like to make long term changes unless I am convinced that they are the right path, but I sure like to dabble, to learn, to get my hands dirty. I don't pretend to know anything, I just endeavor to learn, to ask questions, that's all.

Lemon Coconut Breakfast Bars from Julliemorris.net

So, this week I went plant based. It's fun to monitor how I feel without trying to process the training stress along with it. It's a bit easier to eat something and see if it's enough, or not enough, makes me feel good, or not good when I'm not logging 22+ hours of swimbikerun. It's a fun outlet, I'm learning things...like what "complete protein" means.

wikipedia: a source of protein that contains an adequate proportion of all nine of the essential amino acids necessary for the dietary needs of humans or other animals. Some incomplete protein sources may contain all essential amino acids, but a complete protein contains them in correct proportions for supporting biological functions in the human body.

Vegan Mashed potatoes, again from Jai Seed

The offseason is about lots of things, detraining being one of them. But I would hope that I can use my off-seasons to set myself up for good on-seasons without contributing to burn out. Food is a good start I think. Learning some new healthy recipes, learning more about nutrition, feeding my body some absolutely marvelous vegetables, those are all good things right now.

Oh, and lastly, I just signed up for Door to Door Organics and received my first box of veggies (delivered to my doorstep). Oh my goodness. I had signed up with them about 4 years ago for several months, and wow was I surprised at the quality of veggies this go around. They have really stepped up their game, and I was super duper jazzed to get my box on Friday. If you are interested (and live in Colorado) and want a referral email that is good for 50% off your first box, let me know. I'm not affiliated with them, it's just something they let you do once you sign up.

Happy offseason, Happy eating, Happy learning!