je suis erica

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Courage

People often tell me I’m brave. I usually reply that I have more bravery than brains, and sometimes it’s true. I act impulsively, I follow my gut and I do what I think is right at the time. It’s not necessarily what’s right in the long term, but like I said, more bravery than brains. The thing is, I’m where I am now because I’m brave. Christopher Columbus said something amazing that I love and I found this image on the Internet and I love it. It’s on my wall on the ship for when I doubt myself. I got myself this far, and maybe it’s not where I thought I’d be, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not exactly where I should be.

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I am Strong

This week has been good on the motivation front. Long run Saturdays are up to 10 miles and I’m feeling amazing. When I get to that place where I need some extra motivation, I just keep repeating my new mantra in my head……I Am Strong. It keeps me going through the tough spots. What’s your mantra??

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Grab a Bomb

My newest treasure from the gluten free world came to me from http://www.amazon.co.uk, tasty little energy bars called ‘ENERGY BOMB!’ (www.pulsin.co.uk). Now that we have Dover as a home port full time, I’m able to order things, which has made getting protein powder much easier (the amount of time I’ve wasted trolling around Italian grocery stores trying to find protein powder that I can read the ingredients of, I can’t even tell you!) In my last order, along with my new favorite protein powder (enriched with glutamine, best ever!!), I got some energy bomb bars to try out. The flavor I have is ‘Banana Crisp’, and it’s amazing. I’m snacking on one as we speak. They are gluten free, vegetarian, with no added sugar, no trans fats and non GMO!! I’m so happy with the ‘banana crisp’ flavor that next time I’m ordering a bigger box with more flavors to sample!! If you’re UK based, grab a few! If you’re not fortunate enough to be able to get your hands on some, maybe I’ll bring you some back in November!!

Rocket Nutrition

As a lactose intolerant celiac, when I get attached to something delicious AND allergen free, I get excited. When I was home on vacation, my sister (who is the queen of locating gluten free goodies, and also making them) had found a celiac friendly, all natural oatmeal that I “just HAD to try”. So of course, I got one in every flavor and tried them all. Best plan ever!!! Not only was it the most delicious oatmeal ever, but I’m not allergic to it!! Great success. So I brought multiple bags of it with me on the ship (if you find something delicious outside you become a bit of a hoarder on ships, as we can’t easily access non-ship food). Now I’m running out and I’m not pleased at all. I’m going to have to get some shipped, or beg my family for a care package, or something. Either way, if you can get your hands on Rocket Foods Oatmeal (made with love in Canada, BTW), I highly recommend it!! http://rocket-foods.com/

Going H.A.A.M

I feel amazing!! I killed my run and workout this morning, in excellent time. I had a few really tough runs last week that i struggled through but its all coming together this week. The 30 day challenge ended with me feeling fit and motivated, we’ve now started another 30 day challenge!! Going H.A.A.M on all my workouts, giving 110 percent and it feels sensational!!
How are your workouts this week??

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A Celiac Abroad

I have an amazing tale of gluten-free excellence to pass on from Rome. I spent the entire Mediterranean season hearing about how delicious all the pizza and pasta in Italy was, and never getting to try any, as that is generally a giant pile of gluteny death for me. On our last Rome stop, my Russian friend Alexey and I were walking to the Trevi fountain and happened to turn down a fabulous side street that had a small sign advertising….wait for it….RUSSIAN MENU AND GLUTEN FREE MENU. We both almost had heart attacks. For one, Alexey could read the menu in his mother tongue and I could order something traditionally Italian. We scurried off to the Trevi fountain, after promising the lovely Maitre’d that we would most certainly be returning. A few coin tosses and some priceless photo stops later, we returned to the restaurant, and the waiter proudly informed me that EVERY PIZZA AND PASTA on their menu could indeed be made completely gluten free! After I recovered from the shock and amazement, of course I ordered a pizza, Alexey happily read his Russian menu, and we shared some crisp Sicilian pinot grigio. Let me tell you right now, that was hands down the most amazing pizza I’ve ever eaten, on my last day in Rome, I finally got to experience what my friends had been going on about. It was an absolutely unforgettable day in Rome!

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My next Race!!

So!! I have an upcoming race! I’m super excited about it because I haven’t raced in a while and it’s put on by one of my very favorite companies ever…..DISNEY!!!!!! Turns out I will be signing off right before the Disney Wine n Dine Half Marathon!!!! Actually I’ll be signing off right before the Wine n Dine event itself. I’m excited to spend some time in Orlando, eating good food and wine and running long distances. It’s also the time of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween AND Hollywood Horror Nights at Universal Studios!! So that’s how I’m going to spend the first leg of my vacation. I am a much better athlete when I have something to train for, so I’m very excited to have a race and lots of time to prepare myself. Knowing how many injuries I have, I’m starting slow, doing lots of warm up and stretching, and working my run time up slowly. From years of practice, I know that my body needs time to build to long distances. (I’m sure that many other people do as well) So I gradually work my time up. I don’t increase my time until the time I’m running at feels comfortable and not like my hip might break (it feels like that sometimes). I love having lots of time to prepare, because I’m not really a runner so I have to really focus on it. The ship is the perfect place. Having a race goal as well as having the 30 day challenge to motivate me is really exactly what I needed. I feel amazing and I am looking forward to running my best race time ever!!!

http://www.rundisney.com/wine-and-dine-half-marathon/

My Machiavellian Shower

I’m pretty sure my shower is playing mind games with me. Ship showers can be unreliable. Lots of pipes going lots of different directions all the time. For guests, if there is ever a problem, water too hot or cold or too something, we call the plumber and fix it right away. Crew, however, have different standards of living, most of the time we can’t be bothered to call the plumber, unless it’s a flushing issue or drainage issue. Hot/cold showers don’t really slow us down. However for this last cruise, when I’m freezing cold after a long desk shift and all I want is a hot shower, my shower is freezing cold. BUT when I’ve just come from the gym and I just want a cold shower before work, all I get is scalding hot water. It’s like it can read my mind and it knows exactly what I want at all times, and all it does is the opposite! I’m positive my shower is trying to break me, but I won’t let it. Still unsure how I’m going to get the best of it, but I’ll figure something out!

30 Day Challenge

I will be the first to admit it, I really let myself go during vacation. I wasn’t racing so I ate, drank, lay around, cruised for a few weeks and drank some more. It wasn’t a catastrophe, but I ended my vacation with that uncomfortable feeling when your clothes have gotten a little tight and you avoid being in photos. When I got back on board for this contract, I got back into the gym, but wasn’t really feeling committed, more lackluster and missing my outdoor triathlon training. Then along came the most wonderful trainer and a group of colleagues from different departments. Together we have all begun a 30 day fitness challenge. We have all made different goals that we would like to achieve, but it all centers around the basic principles: Eat Clean, Train Dirty and work hard together. We train together, bootcamps, cycle classes, whenever possible, and are always there for each other when we have tough days. It’s a truly amazing group of people. We have representatives from many different departments and each person brings something fabulous and individual to the group. Everyone is at a different fitness level and has very different goals but we are all there for eachother and always so supportive!  I’m really excited about it. I feel amazing and strong and my passion has been renewed. I’m back into tri training full force as best I can with diverse treadmill workouts and challenging spin classes. Of course, I’m not getting any swimming in, but when we get back to the Caribbean I sure will! If anyone out there has any off-season treadmill workouts to share, I’d be thrilled to add them to my list!!

EAT CLEAN TRAIN DIRTY!!!

Italian Sunset Wine

Some days all you really want is some wine at sunset as you sail out of Italy with a good friend.

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