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April Showers Bring May (Super)Powers

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Hello my fellow Internet audience!

So, yes, we’re all busy, and yes we all have a lot going on, but I’m really glad it’s Friday and even more glad that it is BEAUTIFUL outside. We’ve had record-setting rain, which is nothing to complain about, but it’s nice seeing some blue for a change. I’m also incredibly thankful that I don’t live in Las Vegas anymore because it’s probably 97 degrees there.

I have once again fallen off the blog train, so my new goal for the summer will be two blogs a month. That seems super doable.

I just experienced one of the craziest and yet strangely most fulfilling weeks (plus a few days) of my life. It all began on 4/27 when my wife and I signed 103 pages of lawyer-filled-gook written for the not-so-common-man that’s only purpose in life was to proclaim that we had, in fact, purchased a home. Wow, was that a stressful process. I don’t think I enjoyed much of it, except possibly picking out the home customizations. That was pretty neat. That being said, we have survived the initial two week onslaught of WHERE ARE MY BOXERS and WHAT BOX HAS ALL THE FOOD IN IT, and are now well on our way to making it feel like home.

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This happened. Go see it!

In addition to moving, and a huge thanks to everyone who helped with that, I also ran a half marathon the day after hauling a crap ton of @#%^ to the new place via Uhaul. Normally, I wouldn’t really recommend it, but this is not the first time that I have run 13.1 miles the day after moving. Last year, as a matter of fact, as my first Quasi-Semi-Annual- House-Change-Half-Marathon, or the Downtown River Run as I like to call it. All things considered, I nailed it. Crushed my pacing, dropped a little time from last year, and finished feeling pretty fresh. Why yes, I will take 1:34, thank you. I have no reservations about not breaking 1:31 to PR. After all, I did have to move my dad’s heavy steel couch up the stairs along with 7000 boxes the day before…

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Make Experiences Into Valuable Assets

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I was recently sitting at my favorite hang out in town, Coffee Bar, with my lovely wife and some very dear friends of mine. In the midst of a very chaotic month, and even year, it was a nice relief. It’s so freaking hard to find quiet time these days. Swim here, run there, bike this way, go to work, pack this, move that, eeesh! It’s exhausting. But in the hour and 40 minutes that the four of us had together, it was refreshing to be able to quiet my mind and focus on the things that matter the most in this world – relationships.

It wasn’t about our busy jobs or oppressive deadlines or even the political elections coming up. Instead, it was all about spending quality time together, getting to share fun experiences, chatting about hopes and dreams, and enjoy a good cup of coffee (tea for me). Quiet and relaxing time is rare these days – one could almost say it’s going the way of the dinosaur – but on this particularly chilly night, I found great appreciation in spending time with quality human beings.

I don’t really care for moving. Actually, I pretty much loathe it. Boxes, boxes, boxes. Boxes everywhere. And tape. And all the knick-knacks you didn’t even know you owned. I moved last April for the first time in five years. I also helped my wife (fianceé at the time) move two weeks later, and one year later, here we go again, this time for the long(ish) haul though. April shall be officially renamed THE MONTH THAT WE SHALL NEVER MOVE IN AGAIN. In addition, during my stint at the university, April was always the month of CRAZY OVERWHELMING STRESS between wrapping up grad school coursework, student events, etc. Ironically, May is my second favorite month, so it seems appropriate that April would be insanity in a bottle in order to prime May for the explosive deliciousness of sunshine, warmth, and triathlon happiness.

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Commence Primary Ignition

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Hello from beautiful Reno, Nevada! We’ve had rainstorms, 75 degree weather, a cold snap, and now we’re gunnin’ for sun this weekend. Just another spring month in the Silver State.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and no, I’m not talking about Christmas, although since you asked, it’s only 253 shopping days until the big shebang. You’re welcome.

No, my friends, get out the big guns because it’s racing season, and we’re starting it off with a bang tomorrow at Granite Beach. I’ve done this race at least six times, with the past two years landing some pretty solid podium finishes (4th and 2nd respectively), and while I can only hope that tomorrow goes well, I’ve got two of my favorite rivals coming out to give it a go. I imagine I’ll be chasing them all the way to the finish line… darn runners.

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Boom. Racing season!

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Curious Russell and the Enigma of Life

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The weather in Reno is perfect. Perfect for biking, or running, or playing catch, or BBQing, or packing boxes, or moving… Eeesssh.

An outlook of curiosity is a rewarding outlook. If you’ll hearken back to the Golden Era of children’s books, you may remember the many quests of Curious George. What a great role model!

This morning there was a huge truck outside our office containing a ton of brand new, shiny fire extinguishers. Now, I know next to nothing about fire extinguishers other than they handle three types of fires (liquid, paper, and electric) and that they are red. Not exactly an expert. Right away I saw this truck containing at least 150 of these things so I began to wonder: Who manufactures these things? How much does each one cost? Where do they go when they’ve expired? What happens if it doesn’t work when you pull the pin? How much red paint do they buy for these things? Do they incorporate new technology ever? How big is their IT department?

The list goes on and on – and that was just within the first three minutes of being at work.

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The Heat is On

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Ah, it’s the most wonderful time of the year… race season! Spring has sprung, or is springing, or even returning to winter depending on who you ask.

I have been racing the tri-scene since ’07, back when I was young, foolish, and barely into my 20’s. Now, for the second time, I will be changing age groups (the five year buckets that athletes are placed into so that they more accurately race their peers). Surprisingly, people only get faster the older they get in the sport. Well, let me rephrase – the hardcore and dedicated get faster. Many others makes excuses for aching knees or tweaked hips.

True, the faster-as-you-get-older phenomenon seems a bit odd, but endurance is a sport of accumulation. You amass swim, bike, and run miles year after year, and theoretically, year after year you either get faster, stronger, or can endure more. In 2011, I spent a monstrous amount of time preparing for a race that was 70.3 miles. In 2014, I trained for two such races in my free time, but that was all in preparation for a race that was twice as long. It didn’t make those half races exactly easy, but it wasn’t nearly as taxing as it was three years prior. You learn and apply those lessons to the next season. A season without improvements, mental or physical, is like letting a day go by without learning something new.

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Seven Easy Steps To Get Your Wife To Follow You on Instagram

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Happy Tuesday, peeps! I hope you have a delicious plan for working some juicy, succulent tacos into your menu for the day. It’s Tuesday after all – we need a moral boost.

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything light-hearted, so today’s post is well earned.

My wife recently followed me on Instagram. I know, I know, not a big deal – however, I did find it incredibly hilarious that after two years of being together, plus an additional year of me trying to figure out what the heck I was doing with my life, all topped with six months of being married, I finally got my favorite person in the world as a follower. The best part is I didn’t even know she had an Instragram. And in my defense, I’ve only been Instagraming for a few months myself.

  • Step 1: Meet your future wife
  • Step 2: Marry her
  • Step 3: Buy her a house
  • Step 4: Go salsa dancing with her weekly
  • Step 5: Tell her you love her multiple times a day
  • Step 6: Cook her plenty of tacos
  • Step 7: Bask in your irresistible-ness which is actually just the result of an accidental follower request :-)
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Magic.

 

Can you feel the love tonight?

I can be found on Instragram at raaronman.

An Introspective Look at the Man Who Thought He Had It All Figured Out

Good morning everyone! It’s nearly spring, although the massive snow dump up in the Sierras would have you believe otherwise. Five feet of snow is quite a bit, but no one ever expects the weather in Reno to make sense year round anyways. Oh Memorial Day, how I have a love-hate relationship with your snowy self the past decade.

I’m plowing on in many facets of my life: keeping a great marriage alive and well, moving into a house in 42 days, getting ready for my 10th (tenth!?!?!?) triathlon season, and meeting my professional expectations at work. It’s always a neat time of year when the choking grasp of the holidays has fallen off, and you can feel the fresh flow of oxygen return to your parched body. It’s a time for new-ness, for rebirth, and what more appropriate holiday to remember that with than Easter…

Every other year or so, I reach a place in my life where I like to think I have everything figured out, and I’m always rudely surprised to find that A) that’s just preposterously not even possible and B) I usually get a rude awakening as to what my masked eyes have been hiding from me. I’m not a very humble person, and it often takes many repeated efforts for me to be yanked down out of my delusional cloud to be exposed to the reality around me. It’s a humbling experience to be surrounded by the nasty, evil little creatures that embody the entirety of my bad habits glaring up at me with their sharp teeth snapping away, reminding me that not only am I not perfect but I have a plethora of distasteful habits that annoy and impact others, especially those I live with (a.k.a. my wife). Read more…

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