Sunday, August 07, 2011


Instead of teaching Sunday school, I get to go to a teacher improvement class today which means that for the first time in what seems like ages I have a free Sunday morning.

I’m not really sure were to begin with this post. So much has happened over the past few months, and it would take pages to recap so I’ll just hit the highlights.

First and foremost I started a new Job. I’m back at IBM as a cross brand channel manager and couldn’t be happier. Essentially I help a few of IBM’s top business partners sell IBM software. It is different, challenging, and I get to work from home which is a huge bonus.

I left IBM because I had been doing the same thing for 10 years and really needed a change. I looked internally but never found the right role, so after several months I decided to leave and go to a different company - NetSuite. Suffice to say, I did not thrive there. There are certain environments that bring out the best in me both creatively and emotionally and this was not one of them. One night in fit of frustration, I sent out several emails to various people I knew and eventually found this job. The funny thing is that a year ago I actually interviewed for this role but didn’t get it. Life has a funny way of working out if you keep trying.

I’ve been working / traveling so much that I’ve almost completely put racing to the side. I was scheduled to race Xterra Indian Peaks yesterday, but didn’t because my fitness is way off but more importantly I didn’t want to be away from Hannah or Cate for most of the day. I made the decision not to compete last week, but I’d been thinking about it for a while. One of the reasons I race is because it gives me motivation to train and while I sometimes have to force myself to get out there, most of the time it’s enjoyable. Lately though, it all felt forced and the race started to feel like an obligation rather than a reward for training. I love it too much to let myself hate it so I’m taking a break.

I’m still getting out there, but I don’t have any structure. I do what I feel like doing. Yesterday morning, I went for a run, and just pushed it. My hart rate was sky high, I was breathing hard, my legs burned, but I was having a wonderful time. Last week I did a few barefoot runs, and even did power Yoga twice. I think I’m going to play the rest of the season by ear and just do what sounds fun. I might race or I might not. I might just focus on running / biking for enjoyment and put racing on hold until next year.

Oh. As some of you know, I started another blog focused more on training. The idea was going to be that this blog was going to be family focused, but that has been put on hold for the time being.

With the change in focus, I’ve been able to spend much more time with Hannah and Cate. In July we went to two family reunions – one in Utah and the other in Oregon. It was great to see family and spend time with everyone. The best part for meA was showing off Cate. For several members of my family it was the first time they had seen her. She of course loved the attention, and hated to come home were she only has two people to play with.

Well that is all for now. Hope everyone is have a great summer.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

So You Think Your Tough?

*Note from Eric: Last week I posted that I was having knee problems. I’m happy to report that I just had some swelling around my knee joint. The caused was my knee cap wasn’t tracking properly. The solution is a few exercises that will strengthen certain muscles to pull that knee cap in to the proper position. My 2010 tri training will pick up again full force on Monday….whew! I was worried there for a minute.

So you thing your tough? I’ve wanted to do a post about this for awhile, but never got around to it. My subject is Scott “Hoss” Cartwright. I’ve worked with Scott for a little over four years now. My best sales year ever was with Scott, and over the years I’ve viewed him as a mentor. He has lots of experience and has the ability to simplify complex scenarios, which is extremely valuable in IT sales.

**Note: this video was filmed back in 07 so he's lifting more now, but it shows all the lifts.

Sales is only Scott’s day job. At night he is a top ranked power lifter. Not only is he top ranked, he is the single ply squat world record holder – 1025 lbs. For those of you not in the “know,” competitive power lifting uses the combined total of three lifts: bench press, dead lift, and squat. Single ply refers to the amount of supportive clothing worn by the lifter. Single ply is basically no support, which is the hardest one can do.

*Note: This is not for the faint the nose.

In addition to lifting, Scott is a regular contributor to various power lifting magazines. He talks about technique, how to get stronger, ect. I’ve asked him for advice on strength training from time to time, so when I hurt my knee he was the first person I talked to. His advise was not surprising – man up and muscle through it.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Knee Problems, Swimming, and Good News

Two weeks ago I was in San Francisco for work. The hotel only had a one bike machines, so my workouts consisted of some basic movement and strength exercises and running. I try to always stay in the same hotel because I have a running route that I love and I can adjust the distance from 5 to 7 miles depending on how I feel. I tend to run longer and go harder when I run at sea level because my cardio system can easily handle the load which means that my legs really get worked.

This time around I ran three times with a total mileage of 18 miles – about 6 more miles than I usually do. My legs felt great and I wasn’t doing any other cardio, so I didn’t thing anything about it. I flew home on Friday, got up early, and headed out for a long but easy, but longer than normal road ride – about two hours. For the past few months my cycle workouts, weather they were outside or on the trainer, have been right around 60 minutes. I saying all this to point out that while my distance and time increased this past week, it wasn’t a difficult and I felt fine.

After the ride, I showered, did my Saturday chores, and then ran some errands with Hannah. No problems. Sunday morning, I rolled out of bed and kneeled down for my morning prayer and my right knee was throbbing with pain. The knee cap was so tender that I couldn’t kneel or go up and down stairs without it really bothering me. Monday it was worse. By the end of the day I could barely walk. I did some research on-line and think it might be Patellar Tendonitis which affects the ligament that attaches the knee cap to the shin bone. The only treatment that I found was rest – complete rest.

For the rest of the week, I stayed off it as best I could and iced it all the time. Today, one week later, it doesn’t hurt, but it feels tender going up and down stairs. I can tell that if I really start using it again it will flair up. I have an appointment to see a sports medicine doctor next Friday. Hopefully it is nothing serious and I can start training again. March 1 is when I start training for 2010 and I need to have some solid base fitness before then, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I won’t be out of commission too long.

Since I can’t run, bike, or do leg exercises I went swimming yesterday. It’s been about 5 months since I was in the pool and it was good to be back. My speed is about the same, but my endurance is way down…my muscles are really sore this morning : )

Now that that is out of the way, we need to move on to more important things. Hannah had her 20 week ultra sound on Friday. We are having a girl!! We’re both really excited. Hannah has been saying it’s a girl from the beginning. I really didn’t care what it was going to be, but deep down, I think I wanted a girl. Not sure why, I just did.

And now your moment of ZEN…..

Kierke, I know I said that I thought ultra sound shots were kind of creepy, but I’ve TOTALLY changed my mind. When it’s your own, it’s awesome!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

2009 Recap and 2010 Races!

*Note: These pictures are of my Xterra Buffalo Creek Race. I’m posting them here since I didn’t do a race report.

I’ve spent a little time reflecting on 2009 and it was quite an eventful year. The most notable part of the year was that Hannah got pregnant. After 8 years of trying, this news was almost too good to be true. It took us a few weeks before it sunk in. The first time we went into the baby section department store after learning that it was a healthy pregnancy we felt guilty. We were so use to ignoring the fact that we didn’t have children, going into the baby section seemed wrong somehow. It’s strange the walls you build around your self(s) to shield you from disappointment. Anyway, that is all in the past and we look forward to having a baby in June. Words can not express how excited we are.

Another highlight of 09 was developing our family history. For some years now, I’ve been interested in family history. This blog actually started as an attempt to document at least part of my / our life. Earlier this year Hannah and I had to opportunity to video my Grandma Ann, my parents, and my Aunt Sharon talking about their lives. Later that year we did the same with Hannah’s folks. Over all we captured about 7 hours of video. Through the editing, I’ve had the chance to watch it again and it is absolutely wonderful. Eventually I would like to do this with each person on both sides of our family. We’ve started with our parents, next is their children, then grandchildren. It’s going to be years in the making, but I believe that future generations will benefit from hearing about their lives.

Last but not least was is my race season. My love of training and racing continued to develop. My focus was on getting faster, but mostly on having fun. Triathlon training can be quite complicated. One has to train in all three disciplines at least twice a week incorporating both hard and easy days, increase in volume and intensity until a few days before the race when you “taper” down to allow your body to recover…but not too much or you’ll loose your fitness for the big day. While this formula works, it can sap the fun out of it. The key for me was to do as much as I can, but don’t stress out if I can’t stick to my plan 100%. This seemed to work and I did well in all my races, with the exception of Buffalo Creek which was fun, but I just wasn’t feeling it that day.

This year my focus will change slightly. Having fun will still be my main goal, but I will also be increasing in distance. Another change will be that I won’t be doing any Xterra’s this year. There just aren’t any races that fit my schedule. Just doing road triathlons will be interesting and I’m curious to see how I like them. Below I’ve listed the races I want to do. It seems like a lot, but I’ve spaced them out pretty well.

• Feb 26, Snowman Stampede – 10 mile foot race
• June 5, Tune Up Tri – Road triathlon (500m swim, 12 mile bike ride, 3.1 mile run)
• June 26, Slacker Half Marathon – 13.1 mile foot race
• July 17, Tri In July – Road triathlon (750m swim, 14 mile bike, 4 mile run)
• July 31, Laramie Enduro – 70+ mile mountain bike race
• August 28, Utah Half Ironman – Road triathlon (1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, and 13.1 mile run)

My “A" priority race is the Utah half ironman with the Laramie Enduro coming in a close second. I think that the other races will be good training for these two main events.

As you can imagine this schedule represents a real time commitment. I structured my workouts so I will do most of my training during lunch or early morning with a few short evenings, so time away from Hannah will be minimal. I’ve discussed this schedule with Hannah in length (when her eyes glaze over, I know that I’ve talked about it too much) and she is behind me 100%. I’ve very luck to be married to such an understanding and supportive woman.

**Note: Notice the smile when I’m crossing the finish line. After a disappointing bike and run, I see Jason in the transition area who is fully dressed because he beat me by 10 minutes….AGAIN!

And now your moment of ZEN.....

I snapped this picture on a recent trip to San Francisco. Joe Harrison picked me up and we had the best bouillabaisse I've ever had. Huge prawns, crab meat, muscles, clams, and fish. Truly a moment of ZEN!

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

San Francisco

A few days after we got back from Crested Butte, I had to go to San Francisco for work. The trip was productive from a work stand point, but not to interesting to talk about. During the day I was either attending internal IBM meetings or customer visits. The meetings were productive, and we uncovered several new opportunities during the customer visits. In the evenings, I would go for a run with my buddy Dean, go out to eat, and then go back to the hotel and get caught up on email or watch TV.

The evening runs were the best part of the trip. It’s a great way to see the city. My favorite loop took me from my hotel (Hilton San Francisco Financial District 750 Kearny Street), through the city to AT&T Park, along the Embarcadero, up some - LOTS of stairs to Coit Tower, over to Lombard, and then back to the hotel. It’s a total of about 7 miles with some good hills and great views.

My favorite restaurant of the trip was a German place called SuppenKuche. The main dinning area is filled with large bench tables that you share with other dinners. Its supper loud and you have to yell to have a conversation, but the atmosphere is great and the food was excellent…..of course Dean and the boys loved the selection of beers. We just about closed the place.

And now your moment of ZEN...... Every time I ran down town, all I could think about was the coolest skate move of all time - Search for Animal Chin. I couldn't get the video to upload so you'll have to click the link.

Crested Butte

Hannah and I have wanted to explore more of central Colorado for a while now, and we had to opportunity to do that over the 4th of July weekend. The plan was to do some camping, hiking, and mountain biking in Crested Butte It is about a 4 hour drive from hour house and goes through high mountain valleys and steep peaks.

We met Hannah’s folks, Melanie and Stoney, at a camp site just outside of Gunnison right next to the Gunnison River. Melanie and Stoney camped in style in their camper, and Hannah and I slept outside. It’s great to go with someone that has a camper because you can hang out around the table playing games in the evening and when it’s raining, which it did almost every day. Plus it has a full kitchen so you can eat in style. Stoney did all the cooking, so Hannah and I just lounged around. It was great.

The bummer of the trip was that Hannah was sick the whole time, and I think everyone but me caught a bit of what she had. In spite of this, we still had fun and got out for a pretty group ride up by the resort.

Our last afternoon there I got out for an “epic” ride on the Doctors Park trail. I chose this ride because I could start and end at our camp site. The guide book said it started with 7 miles of dirt road, followed by 7 miles of trail and ended with 7 miles of uninterrupted spectacular single track - 14 miles up and 7 miles down.

The climb went up

And up

And up

And up

As I neared the top I was exhausted. My legs were jelly and my lungs were burning, but the views were great and I was having a great time. The trail hits the peak of the mountain and immediately starts descending. 100 yards into the decent the trail makes a sharp right over a log bridge crossing a small creek. The logs were wet and slippery and I hit them going pretty fast. I turned my wheel, but kept going straight. When I hit the other side of the bridge I went over the handle bars and rolled a few times. Luckily the ground was soft so I didn’t get hurt, but my front tire came off my rim. Normally this wouldn’t be that big of a deal but as soon as I got up I was accosted by mosquitoes – the worst mosquitoes I’ve ever encountered, and I’m from Alaska! They were so bad that I couldn’t sit in one place for more than 30 seconds. I had to try and repair my wheel while walking back and forth. To make matters worse I had a few other mechanical challenges, but I was able to sort them out. At one point I thought I was going to have to walk down which would have stunk because the best part of the ride was going down!! Anyway, I got everything fixed and had a great ride down.

All in all, the entire trip was great. We exercised in beautiful country and got away from the daily grid for a bit. We plan to go back this fall to do some more exploring.

And know your moment of ZEN………

I LOVE cows!!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

So Far This Summer

One of the tricks I use when I run is to try and let my mind wonder. I try and think about anything other than the pain I’m feeling at the moment. During these times I’ve come up with some of the funniest blog posts ever conceived of….unfortunately when I actually start to type them out they don’t have the flair they had in my mind. I feel like my uncle Parley who once said that he once woke up in the middle of the night because he had dreamed the funniest joke and wanted to get it down on paper. He said “I was going to make the whole world laugh.” Unfortunately for him, upon reading the joke the next morning he realized that it was just gibberish. It must run in the family.

Trip to Utah

A few weeks ago Hannah and I flew out to Utah to attend her sister Sunny’s wedding reception/bbq. Due to my work schedule the trip was a bit rushed, and I was afraid that it was going to feel that way, but trip was actually quite relaxing. Stoney picked us up from the Airport and we went straight to American Fork Canyon for a bit of exercise and sight seeing. When Hannah and Stoney learned that I had never been to Timp Cave, they chastised me (I’m sure David would have as well) and told me that I was taking the tour. The cave is about a two miles up from the canyon floor. The views from the trail is beautiful and very distinctly Utah. The cave itself was amazing.

The rest of the trip was spent going to the bbq, playing with Jack and Lily, visiting with family, and relaxing. It was perfect.


We got back from Utah Sunday night. Monday morning Hannah and I woke up early and drove to Boulder for my first race of the season. The Bolder Boulder is a 10k that winds its way through the streets of Boulder. This year 55,000 people participated. It’s not a serious race for most, but I really enjoy it. People run in costumes, people run with their kids, Boulderites line the streets playing music and offering runners everything from burritos to beer bongs to greasy bacon. It’s a great time.

Two weeks after the Bolder Boulder I participated in a sprint road triathlon (500 meter swim in the pool, 12 mile bike, 3 mile run). My goal for the race was to have fun, practice transitions, and practice going at racing effort. Again, I had a blast. Road tri’s are a lot easer than Xterras!

Two weeks after the road tri, I did Xterra Buffalo Creek (1 mile swim, 20 mile mountain bike, 5 mile trail run). Last year I didn’t finish this race because I was kicked in the head during the swim. This year the swim was the best part of my race. The bike and run were ok. I have some work to do for future races, but I gave it all I had so I’m happy about that. The real bummer of the day was that Hannah wasn’t there. She was taking her LEED certification test (which she PASSED!!), and couldn’t make it. The race wasn’t the same with out her.

Next week Hannah and I are meeting up with Stoney and Melanie at Crested Butte for a fun filled 4th of July. I also have one more Xterra in August and I’m thinking about participating in two more. Don’t really have much else to say. Kind of boring to write about, but life for the Petersen’s is great.

And now your moment of ZEN…..

Hannah riding Stoneys recumbent bike. To learn about what type of person rides a recumbent, check out what the “Fat Cyclist” has to say. The whole article is pretty funny if you’re a cyclist.

And a little humor from the Argyle Sweater

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A Quick Trip to Fruita

I wanted to make a quick post about our trip to Fruita CO last week end.

I’ve had the hankering to go camping ever since spring started to….spring, so Hannah and I packed up the Subaru and headed to Fruita. Fruita is about an hour and a half East of Moab and has the growing reputation of being another mountain biking Mecca.

We drove down early Friday morning with the intention of finding a camping spot then doing some riding. When we got to the only camping site I knew of, it was full. I knew there had to be other camping around, but it was getting late and we wanted to get a ride in before it got dark, so we decided to ride first and find a camping spot later.

The plan was to ride a two loop trail system that was moderately technical and had great views of the Colorado River (Mary’s Loop and Horse Thief Loop). I wasn’t really expecting too much, but was really impressed. The trail is super fast, fun, and the views were spectacular. Hannah really stepped up her riding and was taking the steps and drops like a pro. I was really proud of her.

After the ride we were both tired and the only places we found to camp were scrub brush fields, so we opted to get a hotel. We stayed in the over priced LaQuinta Inn, and I got flea bites all over my legs. Never again. Oh well, we had a good time anyway.

The next day we went rode the Western Rim trail which is a 20 mile lollypop trail (out and back with a loop at the end). The out and back wasn’t too exciting (still fun though), but the rim was amazing. (Stoney, we kept saying that you would love this ride). After the Western Rim, we drove back to Denver, and got home at about 10:00.

All in all the trip was great, and well worth the drive. We are planning on doing a few more trip this spring and some more in the fall.

Here is a video of one of the obstacles on the Western Rim. As always it looked scarier from the top :)

And now your moment of ZEN…..

This little gem came from an awkward family photo web site that my buddy The Doze found. The picture is funny, but the comment under the picture “Wilford Chivalry” kills me.