The Mini Triathlon-Too cute NOT to watch!!

I wanted to think of a way to get my kids involved in my triathlon race and fundraising.  I decided what would be better than doing a “mock mini triathlon” for them and some of their friends (that I know are allowed to be recorded and put on YouTube!!!)  So the Mini Triathlon came to life.  I made them each a race bib (not sure if you can see but they all are some from of 48-Kids FAV #, no clue why!), set the date and Boom!  Here we go!

We tried to get the bibs on and line them up for some pics *Not an easy task, it was after 6:30 on a school evening so we were asking for trouble!  We did better when we asked them to do something silly or fun-

Like saying, “We are #1!”

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Based on timing and well all participants under the age of 6 we didn’t do it in “real triathlon” order.  We did the bike, then run, then swim (2 days later!).  They had a blast and of course we had some tears (well everyone but 2 I think-Blame it on too close to BEDTIME!!)

So please take a minute and watch this too cute video of my little munchkins and their besties-if it doesn’t make you smile You Crazy!!!!

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The Plunge

I had my last baby 15 months ago and I have been trying to get back into shape.  Right before I got married (14 years ago) I signed up with MIT for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to do the DAM (It was my personal DAMN) Triathlon and had NO CLUE what I was doing.  I was getting planning a wedding, helping my mom refurbish their 200+ year old house, moving to a new city, trying to train for this (DAMN/DAM) Triathlon and raise funds.  I didn’t know many people so I did a lot of random things to raise money.  I did bake sales, I printed letters and walked around neighborhoods and spoke to people and talked to family members.

As for the training well let’s just say I was clueless.  I tried to train and I felt good about the swimming but the stamina I had no clue about.   Nor did I have a clue about how the whole transitioning from event to event worked… So after I raised the money, off I went to the DAM (DAMN!) Triathlon.  The hotel was cool and the people were super nice. I can’t say at this time I remember much more.  My mom and sister came to support me which was fantastic.  So when the guys were unloading our bikes one commented about mine being a mountain bike (So?  It’s a bike right? apparently NOT.)  They told me not to worry about it, I should be fine (uh-oh).

The next morning the Triathlon starts and I start off strong with the swimming.  I am freaked out though because I never swam outside, just in the nice pool at the Rec center.   I did fine, mom said I came out in first 25% of the pack so I was happy.  I didn’t swim in a swimsuit because I didn’t want to change so I just put on a pair of shorts and tank top and off I went on my bike.  Everything I heard and read said the bike is the easiest part and that is when you can catch your breathe and refuel for the run.  So I was feeling good.  But remember the mountain bike thing?  Oh and when they pulled it off the bike one of the bike tech guys said my brake was leaning on my wheel just a little bit and he TRIED to fix it but wasn’t sure it would be permanent because he didn’t have all his stuff with him…UH-OH.  So without going into to too many details basically it was miserable, the bike wasn’t a break, I didn’t get to refuel and I when I thought I was done after going up the HIGHEST bridge I have ever seen (probably not but it felt like it on my bike) the volunteers at the race yelled, “good job on the first loop!” Wait, WHAT????  I had to go around again?!?!?!  I almost broke down and cried right there and then.  I was so exhausted and the thought of the bridge again just crushed my soul.  That is how this became and will always be known (by me) as the DAM/DAMN Triathlon.  After the race I found out my brake was on my wheel the whole time just a little but enough to slow me down especially going down hills, uh.  AND a mountain bike is NOT a good bike for a road race-common sense eluded me.   To finish, I finished exhausted but I had done it.

So fast forward back to today.  That was not a great experience for me so I need some revenge!  I don’t know if they still do that particular Triathlon (not gonna lie, didn’t look too hard!) But I found the Chicago Triathlon and it looks awesome!  AND I can raise money for an great charity!  (more about this in another post).

So please follow my blog as a navigate through this Triathlon training, hopefully much smarter than the first time!!

And if you feel compelled to contribute to my race below is my Link, anything would be awesome, thanks so much!!!

http://fnd.us/11DYAa?ref=sh_f2C48c

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OMG Facebook Selling Pages!

So my latest obsession is local selling pages on Facebook.  If you are down with second hand and like a bargain check this out.

I was introduced to my first one about a month ago.  These sites are brilliant for both buyers and sellers.  It is a garage sale at your fingertips.  I have never been a huge fan of garage sales just because I don’t like driving all over town, getting out of the car and not seeing one thing of interest.  Or even worse, not getting out of the car because the description of the sale is no where near what they have.  The selling pages skip all that-Love!

At first I didn’t really get it but then the more I watched the more addicting it became.  Someone starts the page as an administrator and they make the rules. Usually it is pretty basic: have a picture, price and description.  Also, be honest and fair with how you deal with people.  You are also suppose to do all initial communication on the page not private messages until you get to personal information.  This can be good and bad which I will get to later.  A lot of them are closed groups and you have to be invited and approved.  The idea behind it is more of a community and more honesty.   Of course there are still issues that arise but I think overall everyone abides by the rules and stays honest.

It is first come first get so you have to be fast (this is the addicting, constant watch!!!  Kind of like Ebay bidding so the last second when it first began).  This is were the addiction comes in because if it is something really hot it people comment in under a minute and they have first dibs on the item.  Then people claim “back up” or second, third, fourth, etc in line if the people above them pass or don’t finish communication.  Usually children’s items go the fastest if they are priced right, for example: ride on items, playhouses, and water tables to name a few.  There is also room for negotiation but you have to be careful about it because everyone in the group can see your request.  So someone can comment they will give the seller full price which puts you in a spot to pass or pay full price.  This is the downside to having everything communicated on the page.  The upside is that if you are not the initial person you are able to read what is going on with the item.  It is also like being a fly on the wall sometimes seeing what is going on with hot items or topics people bring up.

Here are some tips based on my experiences:

Buying:

-Check often and a lot.  Add notifications on the Facebook page to all.  If it is a busy site you will constantly get updates but you will have a better chance in getting an item you find interesting.

-If you see something you like immediately comment and say you are interested.  You aren’t obligated to buy but it will put you first in line if you catch it fast enough.  Caution on this: ask what you need to know to make your decision and then let them know if you want it or pass.  This is a common courtesy to the seller and another potential buyer.  But if you wait to think about it you may miss it.  That has happened to me several times!

-Contact the seller once you have been told its yours!  Get information on where they live and pick up options.  Sometimes people will meet you or you pick it up at their house.  I have had people drop off  items I bought at my house but I think I was super lucky!  Once an arrangement has been made keep your end of the deal.

Selling:

-Clean your item up, nobody wants to pick up a dirty item plus people tend to want more $ off if it is dirty.

-Post a good pic, short description and a GOOD price.  I also leave a little room for negotiation on a big item but if it is small I make it a price that can’t be resisted.

-Once you have a buyer let everyone know “sold pending pick up” in your comment section.  Once it is picked up delete the post off the wall.  Both of these things are common courtesy so people know it’s gone and deleting helps to not clog the site.

-I try to pretty much post everything that I am about to take to goodwill.  I price it cheap because I figure a few dollars is better than nothing.  Those items I leave on the porch for people to pick up and leave money at my door.  I don’t want to have to wait around for someone for $3.  My thought is that it is a community and most people aren’t going to steal from you.  But I am taking a chance and figure I am out a few dollars.  Anything larger I make sure I am home to actually make a transaction.

-Some people do post things for free just to get rid of.  This is nice if you don’t want to make a trip to a donation center.

If you join a group, have fun and remember it’s addicting!!!