Friday, September 28, 2012

weddingw00t!

On Saturday, August 25, 2012, at the Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito, California, and surrounded by family, friends and loved ones, Kristine and I were married. It was the greatest day of my life.

Imagine all of your favorite people in the entire world gathered together in one room. Every person you see, meet, or talk to is someone you love. Imagine the woman of your dreams standing by your side, joining you in a lifelong adventure. Sprinkle in a touch of rustic ambiance, uncork several bottles of fantastic wine, and top the evening off with hours of dancing.

Multiply that awesomeness by ten and you might understand just how much fun and love and laughter I experienced that night!





Lugano, Como and Lucerne

After completing Ironman Zurich Switzerland, Kristine and I made a bee-line for warmer climes. Though Zurich had treated us well, race day's cold rain really left a mark in our minds. All we wanted after that long, hard day was some sunshine and a solid plate of spaghetti carbonara. We scoured weather reports for the various regions of the Swiss countryside and opted for the most promising option: Lugano, at the heart of Ticino, along Switzerland's southern border.

Lugano was idyllic. The city managed to combine the best of the Swiss with the best of the Italians. The city itself was beautiful, clean, and well-run. The food was fantastic. The landscapes were breathtaking.

By the time we left Lugano, both Kristine and I were trying to puzzle out a way to actually just up and move there. I don't think I've ever enjoyed a town quite so much. I'll never forget the first meal we had there - an absolutely brilliant Italian dinner at a tiny restaurant with a market-fresh menu of only four items - or the sunset views from the top of Monte San Salvatore.








After several incredibly relaxing days in Lugano, we decided to visit Lake Como. After a white-knuckle journey by bus along Lake Lugano, we arrived in Menaggio and then hopped aboard a ferry to Bellagio. We had arrived in the true Italian paradise.

Lake Como is a much more tourist-centric locale, filled with this hustle and bustle of many visitors seeing sights, and for that reason, we liked it slightly less than Lugano. Our time in Lake Como was no less enjoyable, however. We spent our days wandering around the town, watching ducks and ducklings, exploring gardens, learning to make pasta, and eating fantastic Italian food.







Unfortunately, no vacation can truly last forever. After an absolutely amazing week together, it came time to make our way back to Zurich and ultimately back to the real world.

We did manage to delay the inevitable by one night, however, and decided to spend it in Lucerne. We were again treated to perfect weather, and were surprised to discover a vibrant and entertaining music festival just a few blocks from our hotel!






Switzerland is a gorgeous place, and I will forever look back on this vacation as one of the most amazing trips I've ever taken. And best of all, I got to share it with the love of my life. Now... how soon can we go back?!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Updates! Lots of them!


Eight weeks ago, Kristine, Bo, Morten and I were mere hours from our early morning Ironman wake-up call in Zurich, Switzerland. And when I think back to just how much has happened time since race day, I can hardly believe it's only been two months.

Well, things might start to settle down just a little bit now that much of the craziness has ended, which means I may actually have some time to start posting on this blog again! As it stands, here are the events that I'd like to provide updates on:
  • Alex's first triathlon. (He was supposed to write this report, but is a slacker.)
  • My post-Ironman trip to Lugano and Lake Como with Kristine.
  • Our wedding at the end of August!
  • Plans for the off-season.
  • Exciting (and surprising) new developments regarding Ironman Lake Tahoe!
Look for posts on these topics (and more) in the coming weeks.

Finally, I'd like to take a few minutes to congratulate Brent Ledvina on the completion of his first ever HIM-distance (70.3-mile) triathlon. Brent picked up the sport early in the year and has come so far in just a few short months. His excitement and determination are both infectious. I can't wait to train and race with you more in 2013, Brent!

I'd also like to congratulate Mike Vulanich for a killer performance at the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in Las Vegas this past weekend. Mike is a natural talent - a good swimmer, a powerful cyclist and a blazing-fast runner. He put it all on the line last weekend and placed 15th in his age group (123rd overall). Unbelievable and ridiculously awesome job, Mike!