Turning 50 with a Tri

I had a loooong time to think about turning 50. I even had a mock 50th birthday party last year when my dear friend Sharkbait forgot that aging up didn’t really mean turning a certain age already.

I tried not to fret over it – like I did when I turned 25, 30, 35, or 40. Instead I imagined doing something rather impressive to defy my age and mark the occasion. I thought of doing 50 50’s in the pool. Climbing 5,000 feet on my mountain bike. Running 50K or 50 miles in a week or less. Doing a custom crossfit WOD and naming it for my mother! But being sick with shingles a couple of months ago pretty much wrecked those ideas. Though I’m calling it a mulligan and thinking I can do all of those things before I turn 51 – let the record show!

So what could I do to celebrate the Big 5-0 last week? I’m a lucky girl. It was decided for me by the love of my life and some of my dearest friends. I did a tri all right. Three parties – three nights in a row. Lots of awesome thoughtfulness catered to little ol’ (or should I say “old?”) me.

On the actual day, Todd and I took a nice walk around the lake. He indulged my photo bug with lots of shots.

Then we hung out and drank some beers on the floor and played with the cat – the highly entertaining little guy Seven – before heading out for a romantic dinner at Opah.

The next night, I made it to Master’s for a workout to find a homemade Yankee pot roast dinner (by Sharkbait, BTW I prefer to think of it as a Red Sox pot roast dinner) and plate of homemade brownies (by her daughter Nikki) waiting for me. It was fun to blow out the candle and have a nice little celebration with my Master’s team. It feels so good to be swimming with them after a couple of months off. I really missed these people.

Then the next night, I got the surprise of the half-century. I knew Sharkbait wanted to take me out for dinner. I knew she had something up her sleeve. I never predicted it would turn out to be something like this evening. She was in cahoots with our dear friend and ocean swimmer extraordinaire, Lynne Cox.

A ruse was involved. On the way to “the restaurant” where we had “reservations,” we quickly dropped off Nikki to pick up their dog Roxie to walk her home. The dog likes to visit Lynne and her mom. She’s a water dog. She loves to blow bubbles in the pool.

Nothing seemed out of the ordinary. We went inside to say, “Hi!” When we got to the kitchen, I knew something was up. Perhaps it was my favorite green plate on a stack of plates. The row of wine glasses.

Or the sweet aroma of clam chowdah!!!! I just walked in on an authentic New England seafood dinner. We hung out on the patio and enjoyed the first course: sourdough rolls and The Original Fish Company’s New England clam chowder.

Then came the next course, lobster flown in from Young’s in Belfast, Maine with corn on the cob and potatoes.

And then the piece de resistance – the most incredible birthday cake I’ve ever seen in my life from the Great Dane Bakery in Los Alamitos.This cake was so delicious that I promised Lynne I'd be sure to post some pictures of it!

It was truly a work of art. I’ve never seen anything like it – and it tasted just as phenomenal as it looked. What can I say? I have a weakness for chocolate! Thank you Great Dane Bakery!!

Kind of beats a race report doesn’t it?!!! Well, it does if you're not in race shape! Grateful doesn’t even begin to describe my feelings about last week.