Inspirational Writing on Swim Caps: Make your swim a bit more personal and meaningful

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1044942_541254962602362_1692754068_nOne of my favorite parts of participating in Swim Across America events is writing on the swim caps in memory of those affected by cancer.

This tradition started over a decade ago at the SAA Long Island sound swim, when I would write the name of my grandfather who died of cancer and other inspirational quotes. My family and I have done it every year since at SAA events — and decided to bring the tradition to the North Jersey pool swim. Participants have written everything from the name of loved ones to inspirational quotes to other symbols on their caps.

The participants at the SAA North Jersey event loved writing on the caps for the event — it brought an added personal touch to their lap swimming.

Have you ever tried something similar to this at a triathlon? At a swimming event? Let us know!

Tri Hard,

Caity

Swim Across America Pool Swim: Tomorrow!

In the North Jersey area this weekend? Stop by the Glen Rock Pool in Glen Rock, NJ anytime tomorrow morning from 6-8 AM and swim laps in a beautiful olympic-sized outdoor lap pool to raise money for cancer.

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

6-8 AM 

Glen Rock Pool – Glen Rock, NJ

Swim 1 mile, 1/2 mile, or laps of your choice!

swimacrossamerica.org/northjersey

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Tri Hard,

Caity

NYC Adventures: Squeeze in a Quick Workout and Take a Day Trip!

New York City.

It’s only about a half hour from my house, and I definitely should go in more — I don’t make the trip as often as I should.

However, this weekend I spent the day in the city with three friends (two of which I technically met through YoungTri). Kaitlin was visiting from Florida and loves the city — and my friend Connor is a part of Enstitue and lives in NYC — check it out here.

We walked through Riverside Park, Central Park, got brunch at Sarabeth’swent to the Guggenheim museum (which was awesome — the brushwork in Van Gogh’s “Montagnes à Saint-Rémy” was stunning), ate Tapas for dinner, and headed home later that evening.

More than anything, it was quite fun to spend the day with three friends and explore the city. I woke up early that morning, squeezed in a quick run, and had an enjoyable rest of the day off from training.

Looking for something fun to do this upcoming weekend? Schedule it around training! If you live in a suburb of a major city, try a bike or run in the city rather than in your hometown! (Maybe even go as far as to plan a training weekend with friends or family in a nearby destination!) If you’re looking for something a little bit more low-key but don’t want to sacrifice an entire training day or weekend, plan out your short trips in advance. What time will you have to get up to squeeze in a bike? A run? An open water swim? You get the idea.

Plan it, make it happen, and have fun.

There’s a whole world out there to explore!

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heading into NYC!

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beautiful flowers!

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Sarabeth’s for brunch!

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Riverside park

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Riverside park

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Guggenheim museum

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Brooklyn bridge

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YoungTri friends! Haha

Thanks to Kaitlin for a lot of the pics 🙂

Tri Hard,

Caity

Before the Sun Rises: Three Quick Tips for Early Workouts

My dad always says that he enjoys morning workouts most — even if it means committing to waking up at the crack of dawn. Although the same isn’t always true for me — (I do love my evening runs!) it can be tempting to cancel morning workouts when you’re tired from the weekend, have a lack of motivation, or are just not in the mood. Here are a few quick, simple tips for conquering workouts before the sun rises.

1. Make a Plan. Decide at what time your workout will take place before bed, and make sure any friends or family members who may be participating with you are aware. A loose plan like “I think I’ll run in the morning” is less likely to happen than a concrete plan like “I’m running such and such a route at 6:15 AM”.

2. Stick to it. When your alarm inevitably rings, don’t be tempted to hit snooze and forget about your planned workout. Even if it takes setting your alarm for a half hour earlier because you just know you’ll hit snooze, use your alarm as a tool — not as a means through which to delay or cancel planned, scheduled workouts.

3. Take it all in. And Enjoy. Swimming, biking or running at 5 AM before the sun rises is quite different than a workout at 3 PM. Things are more serene — the sun is yet to have risen, the temperature is cooler, not as many people are buzzing about — and definitely less hectic. Take a moment to enjoy the peacefulness that comes with a before-the-crack-of-dawn workout — whether that means appreciating crawling back to bed afterwards (if you’re lucky enough to do so) that much more or stopping to watch the sun rise before or after an intense run. Morning workouts also bring with them a sense of accomplishment — (you’re done for the day!) — so enjoy that as well.

Do you like working out early? How do you make sure you stick to a plan and don’t sleep through your alarm or postpone the workout?

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Tri Hard,
Caity

Thought for the Day: What You Think is What You Are

tumblr_mowx46Gy2Q1qb13xjo1_400Lately, I’ve been trying to give myself more of a break with my thoughts. To not obsess as much over the past, what could’ve been. To focus on the present.

And you know what? It makes a world of a difference.

Happiness may be a sort of a choice — but it’s not an easy one. It takes time, and is a foundation that is built upon and developed each day.

Sometimes, we need to go through periods of sadness so that when we come out on the other side, happiness and consistent thoughts can be appreciated much more. Roadblocks color the edges of our lives at times; affecting the quality of life not only through the arduous task of overcoming these circumstances, but also through consistently keeping our thoughts positive. If you’re going through a rough patch, remind yourself that it’s okay to be sad for a short period of time. Mourn what’s lost. What could’ve been. Scream. Cry. Run out your feelings. Whatever it takes. But I think that the key to long-term happiness — to not letting short-term sadness become long term — is to monitor your own thoughts.

Forgive yourself. What’s done is done. You have tomorrow. You have today. You have the rest of your life. Whether you’ve seriously been slacking on training, had a horrible race — or are dealing with recent personal struggles (which can definitely affect training), forgiveness is key. Obsessing over situations and trying to fix what’s done isn’t always best. Move on. Live.

Obsessive and negative thoughts can negatively affect training quite seriously. Living by the sentiment that “the happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts” is something for which we should all strive — because your thoughts run you. Remind yourself through your thoughts that you deserve happiness. Happiness brings with it a better life {and better training results}! Monitor your thoughts. For what you think is what you are.

How have you been trying to think positively lately? Has it been working?

Tri Hard,

Caity

Saturday Morning Adventures in Piermont, NY: Boats, Brunch, and …Triathlon Recovery?!

Yesterday, I headed about 35 minutes up north to Piermont, NY with Kaitlin, my brother, and his girlfriend. Piermont is a beautiful town on the Hudson River with a ton of cute restaurants, shops, and things to do. There are also a TON of bikers! There were bike racks everywhere, and lots of people walking around the streets in their bike clips.

First we headed off to brunch at the Sidewalk Bistro, and I had a yummy mushroom and tomato and frittata.

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always gluten and dairy free!

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bikes everywhere!

After exploring the town a bit more and popping into a few shops (We even went thrifting and bought a few things! My brother TJ is awesome at thrifting and found a couple of really nice pieces), we came across a new shop called the Athlete Recovery Center.

If you’re ever in the Piermont area, check it out! There is a massage therapist on staff at times, and after a tough workout athletes can use the compression boots, hydrotherapy sessions, and more. There’s even a juice bar and organic, vegan sport nutrition available for purchase. I tried the “vegn” brand today, and it worked quite well. It’s plant based, and all-natural.

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one of the seats where compression boots and other recovery tools can be used! with a triathlete magazine of course!

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athlete recovery center!

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vegn nutrition

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yummy, fresh beet juice!

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the juice bar!

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The pier was so beautiful!

Have you had any post-training Saturday morning adventures recently? Or stumbled across any cool triathlon-related storefronts lately?

Tri Hard,

Caity

My Experience with the BluePrint Cleanse: Update (and advice for the post-cleanse!)

For part one, check out this article: https://youngtri.com/2013/06/17/3-day-blueprint-juice-cleanse-worth-it-a-triathletes-perspective/

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Kaitlin and I love our juices! haha

I did the BluePrint cleanse (3 day) again this past week — and it went a lot better than the first time! This was becase I followed the post cleanse advice than the first time.

My advice for tackling the BluePrint cleanse: for awesome results that stick, make sure you eat lightly for 1-2 days before and after the cleanse. Especially afterwards, pay attention to your body and learn what the cleanse taught you — that you don’t need to be eating 24/7 to survive! My recommendation is to stick to mostly fruit & salads & juice for the post-cleanse to really work.

Have you tried a juice cleanse? What’s your experience with the days immediately after a cleanse?

Tri Hard,

Caity

Reunited!

This weekend I’m reunited with my friend Kaitlin (who I met through YoungTri!) We both go to school in Boston, and she came to New Jersey to visit me this weekend.

My friend Sara was also back for the first time in almost a year this weekend from Ohio State (she is a swimmer there)! We did our first triathlon together back in 2005. Seems like forever ago!

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reunited!

It’s so much fun re-connecting and hanging out with friends you haven’t seen in a few months! (Even though we text constantly and give each other training updates, haha)

Kaitlin and I are planning a fun weekend of relaxing and training!

Have you reconnected with any of your triathlon friends recently?

Tri Hard,
Caity