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The tail end of the taper

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

I had my last biking so-called workout today. It said to bike 15 miles. Well, I bike commuted to work and home, and called it good. It wasn't a single session, it was broken up by the work day... but this way I got half the ride in better conditions than the 100 degree ride home. It added up to 15.3. And biking is done until TRI morning.

Yesterday I did my tapering swim of 1000 yards, and tapering jog of 30 minutes, keeping carefully to the plan, not OVER doing.

Tomorrow is a rest day. Friday, the day before the race, I'm taking off work, and will swim a brief 400 yards and run a brief 15 minutes. I will go visit the race site and plot where to park in transition if I can get it, then pack up my wardrobe, nutrition and tools into the car before I go to bed Friday night, as check in for the race starts at 5:30 a.m.

They sent us an e-mail with very specific instructions for the order at check in. When I went as a spectator last year, in time to observe the pre-race meeting, it was a crazy busy scene.

So... meditate... chill... and rest. The main event is nearly here.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 7/27/2012 9:23PM

    Some taper!! What a caper!!

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SLEEPYDEAN 7/27/2012 4:35PM

    Too bad they don't have pre-race pickup so you could get that part out of the way Friday.

Sounds like you are more than prepared for a great triathlon tomorrow!

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_LINDA 7/26/2012 10:10AM

    1000 yards swim is a taper, *whew*!! Kind of points up how much and how far you have to go in this race. 5:30 am start time, wow! Hope you can get a good night's sleep and not be too excited that you can't. Need all the rest you can get!
Enjoy your rest day, so glad you are taking off work the day before, don't need that to keep you wound up.
I read here the race horse trembling and eager to get out of the starting gate, with a few little trial runs to get warmed up!
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KALIGIRL 7/26/2012 8:46AM

    See you there!

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ALOHAEV1 7/26/2012 8:03AM

    Here I am grinning at your rest day of 400 yards and a brief bike ride. I want to be like you when I grow up!

We'll be there in spirit cheering you on emoticon

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OVERWORKEDJANET 7/26/2012 5:15AM

    I'll be there in spirit to cheer you on! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MSLZZY 7/25/2012 11:38PM

    You sound like you know just what to do. Good luck!

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MNTWINSGAL 7/25/2012 11:28PM

    You must be getting so excited now - just a couple more days before the big race! We'll all be with you in spirit.....can't wait to celebrate with you afterward!

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KARIDIAN1 7/25/2012 10:16PM

    You are so prepared in all ways. plan your plan and then work your plan.

You will do great!

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BARBAELLEN 7/25/2012 10:14PM

    Hope the event turns out to be a blast for you! This is sooo exciting!
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1CRAZYDOG 7/25/2012 9:42PM

    Good luck Barb!!

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I would say we're now officially in taper - count down

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Walked / jogged in the late afternoon heat yesterday, as that's what the training plan said. This morning, though, it was deliciously cool at 73 degrees by comparison for my last "long" bike ride of 20 miles. I rode down to the University and back, taking mostly bike trails but some residential streets to round up the mileage.

Since then, laundry and puttering around the house. I am supposed to walk 30 minutes this evening, which I will do on the treadmill to my guilty Summer reality show obsession (Big Brother).

The workouts this week are shorter, leading to essentially just a loosen up workout of short swim and very brief jog on Friday before the race on Saturday. Ready or not, here we come! emoticon emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

COMETER 7/24/2012 10:21PM

    You sure sound ready to me!

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LEANJEAN6 7/24/2012 8:58PM

    Wow!!--Ready to go Barb!--Lynda emoticon

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SUNNY332 7/23/2012 5:47PM

    I think you are ready without a doubt too.

Good job, Barb.

Sunny

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KALIGIRL 7/23/2012 8:38AM

    READY without a doubt!

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MSLZZY 7/23/2012 7:38AM

    You are ready and I know you will do well!
HUGS!

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DEBRA0818 7/23/2012 7:34AM

    WOW, Barb! I leave for a few minutes and the next thing I know you're doing a triathlon. You go, girl!

I'll be very interested to read what your experience of the race is, and I wish you very good luck and joy in the running (and swimming and biking).

Cheers,
Deb
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SHARON10002 7/22/2012 11:03PM

    I have no doubt in my mind whatsoever that you are READY and Rarin' to Go!

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KARIDIAN1 7/22/2012 10:31PM

    One week to go and you are so ready!

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ON2VICTORY 7/22/2012 9:10PM

    you got this... go get it!!

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LJCANNON 7/22/2012 9:08PM

    emoticonI can't imagine anything you could have done to be 'More Ready' than you are. Congratulations, and Enjoy your Taper Week!!

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WATERMELLEN 7/22/2012 7:43PM

    Excellent prep: you're good to go!!

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SLENDERELLA61 7/22/2012 7:25PM

    How exciting!! You have trained seriously. You are ready, for sure! Enjoy the taper week. Take care. Get some good rest. -Marsha

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BARBAELLEN 7/22/2012 6:54PM

    What on earth do you mean, "ready or not?" As diligent as you are, I can't imagine anyone being more ready than you! Now that we know you're ready, let's hope that you have a great race!

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OPTIMIST1948 7/22/2012 6:44PM

    Go,go,go! Be ready, be rested, be loose. You'll do great.

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ACYCLINGMIND 7/22/2012 6:03PM

    Oh a race! Good luck! :D

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1CRAZYDOG 7/22/2012 5:56PM

    the countdown begins! You are well prepared. Kudos to you!!

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Open Water: what the pool will not train you for!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Isn't it pretty? This photo and the next two were taken before and at the start of the 1500 meter swim. The one I did, the 750 followed, an hour or so later.

Some things you need to be prepared for: the sighting distance is a whole lot longer than in a 25 yard pool. People warn you of this. You try to prepare, but when you get into it, it's an "aha", anyway.

This is a side-shot of some of the 1500 meter swimmers warming up. When it was my turn, discovered bathtub temperature water in the small lake.
It was done as a running start by countdown / voice command. The first 20 yards was through clumps of seaweed.

You are now a number. But they know your name.

Now let me say a few words about the numbers of participants and the support staff who were superb. And the Cornhusker State Games in general, for that matter. Your state may have such games. If they do, I encourage you to support them as a spectator AND participate, because sporting and fitness is not just for the elite and the handicapped... it's for ordinary folk, too, and that's what *these* games are about!

As you can see in the running start, there were not a whole lot of swimmers in the 1500 meter open water swim. Something like 10. There were 18 in the 750. I know, because I finished 18th. Got a silver medal for my effort, because they *do* age groups.

First thing I discovered was that I was too jumpy and too blind to trust myself at a crawl for very long. I ended up doing side and breast stroke for most of the swim. Second, I think it concerned the safety folks in the boats / kayaks... they kept asking if I was OK. I assured them that I was fine, I did not need a floaty, I could keep this up for a long time... I'm just SLOW!

Second thing was that between body temperatures and lake temperatures, the thing I began to miss almost immediately was my sight. Fogged up goggles. I mean so bad I could not see the next boat much less the buoy that was my target.

Third thing: choppy water, which contributed a lot to my choice of strokes. I just feel calmer at the side stroke and breast stroke. I mixed some crawl in there, but mostly kept on swimming a la Dorrie.

Most triathetes warn you about crowds in the water, people around you. Beyond the first 50 yards, this was not a problem. I was so far behind the pack, it wasn't funny. In the end, I had two boats, one on each side, making sure I didn't drift off course because they were aware (I told them) that I could not see. They kept telling me to go left or right as I would lose sight of the buoy and stroke three times and get turned again. Guardian angels, those ladies in the boats!

And you know what? In the end, I finished under my own power, walking out of the water upright, with a grin on my face, and wanting to do it again, hopefully a little better, next week.

My time? 27:29 for 750 meters. And miles ahead of anyone who stayed on her couch today!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDI571 7/23/2012 7:44PM

    You are so awesome! emoticon

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OVERWORKEDJANET 7/23/2012 5:27AM

    Barb, you rock!
You just give me so much confidence in aging beatifully!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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SHARON10002 7/22/2012 11:01PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticonBarb!
You did emoticon! You even won a medal!
You are not miles, but light years ahead of me, girl!
Thanks for the pictures, and you are looking AMAZING!

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WATERMELLEN 7/22/2012 7:42PM

    Miles ahead indeed: sing it out loud, you should be proud!

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SUNNY1432 7/22/2012 1:32PM

    emoticon emoticon congrats on finishing the race ad getting a medal! emoticon

Comment edited on: 7/22/2012 1:33:58 PM

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KALIGIRL 7/22/2012 11:31AM

    Glad to hear it - and glad to hear you were able to practice before next week - will join those watching over you next week!

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SLENDERELLA61 7/22/2012 8:35AM

    WOW! Impressive. So glad you did it -- yourself -- mile ahead of all those on the couch. And you look AWESOME! Totally buff!! Way to go!!! -Marsha

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ALOHAEV1 7/22/2012 7:51AM

    emoticon I'd say your test swim was a success. emoticon

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WONDERFUL2BME 7/22/2012 4:06AM

    Great job! I heard that motion sickness can plague people who swim open water from the land looking like it is bobbing up and down. Did that bother you at all?

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_LINDA 7/22/2012 12:33AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
Well done Barb! Miles ahead of most people I know!


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MSLZZY 7/21/2012 11:46PM

    Definitely miles ahead of me! AWESOME!

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KARIDIAN1 7/21/2012 9:38PM

    Congrats- you did it! I saw the picture of you with the glasses and wondered if you swam with them. Then I read about the goggles, and not being able to see. I would be exactly in the same situation, and i would probably swim away from shore, or in circles. Good thing you had guides to keep an eye on you.

The pictures were great. And you look great.

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BARBAELLEN 7/21/2012 9:05PM

    Girl, are you ever persistent! I love your documentary, and I love your sense of adventure. Really enjoyed this blog.

. . . and, dang, do you ever look great in a swim suit! :)

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MOBYCARP 7/21/2012 8:55PM

    You're ahead of your brother in swimming this year; I don't think I've been in a pool, let alone attempted open water.

Good for you, getting out there and preparing for that tri!

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ON2VICTORY 7/21/2012 7:14PM

    way to go my friend. YUP, the pool will only give you a feel for the water but nothing will prepare you for the challenges of open water.Like you, I used the side stroke when my heart rate was getting high and was getting a little tired.. sort of like a run/walk interval. It helped me get my HR down and allowed me to recover enough to start a crawl again.

My tri suit worked just fine too. I was wearing a one piece unit and it was great also on the bike and run.

Also, the swim start was like getting tossed into a blender, elbows and heels everywhere. The side stroke was more for self defense than it was a necessity at the start.

I found that alternating strokes also helps if the chop gets to be too much and it prevents panic in the water. More than once I would breathe in the crawl only to get a face full and miss a breath. Switching up helped me regain control and offer a little extra sighting as well.

I also found that having tined goggles works well. things were great going out to the buoy but when we turned back into the sun, the glare washed everything out and you could only catch glimses of your exit area...

Keep going my friend... :)

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LJCANNON 7/21/2012 4:05PM

    emoticonDorie would be so proud of You!!! Congratulations on your Achievement!! Talk about Stepping (Swimming!!) out of your Comfort Zone!!
emoticonWAY TO GO!! emoticon

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LEANJEAN6 7/21/2012 3:08PM

    Hi Barb-I just showed my husband your fat picture and he finds it unbelievable how you used to look-Keep up the good work! --Hope you enjoyed yer swim in the open water!-Lynda

Comment edited on: 7/21/2012 3:09:04 PM

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OPTIMIST1948 7/21/2012 12:55PM

    You succinctly explained exactly what happened to me on my tri. Vacation next week at a lake with loads of family and boats. Plan on working on it. Nice numbers!

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EBEAMS 7/21/2012 12:27PM

    That's awesome! You are incredible!

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NEWKAREN43 7/21/2012 12:16PM

    What a fantastic inspirational blog! I honestly have tears in my eyes, I'm so happy for you, I can feel your glow of pride! Wonderful! This was a great experience to learn it, feel it, get one with it and know the support you have! I love this! Hugs to you and thank you for sharing your journey with us.
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MIZCATHI 7/21/2012 12:05PM

    Congratulations - what a tremendous accomplishment.

Wash your goggles with your own spit the next time, and plenty of it. Gross, but it definitely works!

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1CRAZYDOG 7/21/2012 12:01PM

    One word: AWESOME!!!!! Hugs to you. You are such an inspiration.

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Yesterday, today, and tomorrow...

Friday, July 20, 2012

I got the training plan covered yesterday with the pool swim in the morning before work, and a 45 minute treadmill walk in the evening (as opposed to walking in 100 degree outdoors).

This morning I woke to disturbing news stories that I had to turn off, as they brought back echoes of feelings that were just too... to relive. I took on day five of the meditation challenge, calming myself before heading to work.

After work, picked up my packets for the Cornhusker State Games activities, tomorrow's Open Water Swim and next weekend's Sprint distance Triathlon. Came home to find that my rental wetsuit was waiting at the local FedEx drop. I went and got it, and wrestled my way into it. OK, sizing good... strips off easier than it goes on, which is good from a competition point of view.

The opening ceremonies for the games are soon to start... I didn't go last year, as I was doing the 10K Volkswalk early the next morning, like as soon as it would open! I'm thinking I might just go now, though.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUNNYWBL 7/28/2012 5:41PM

    You continue to amaze me! emoticon

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KALIGIRL 7/21/2012 8:40AM

    Ready to go - woohoo!

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MSLZZY 7/21/2012 8:39AM

    Have a wonderful day! HUGS!

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PROFMOM4 7/21/2012 8:27AM

    Have a great time! You'll be awesome! emoticon

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MIZCATHI 7/21/2012 7:34AM

    You've worked so hard to train for this event - hope everything goes off without a hitch! I am happy for you.

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PUDLECRAZY 7/21/2012 7:12AM

    Wishing you the best!

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OVERWORKEDJANET 7/21/2012 6:52AM

    i am exercising vicariously through you. emoticon

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_LINDA 7/21/2012 12:52AM

    This is a good sign things are coming together for you -awesome with the wet suit!!
All the best with the Open Water Swim -bet you will rock it -just visualize its just you and the water -and Jaws coming up behind you, that will get your motor rnning ;)
Swim, Barb SWIM!!
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LJCANNON 7/21/2012 12:17AM

    emoticonJust reading about your Training Schedule makes me tired!!
emoticonCongratulations on the wetsuit!! Glad that it arrived on time and that it FITS!!
emoticonGood Luck tomorrow!!

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SUNNY1432 7/20/2012 11:39PM

    Sound like you have fun-filled days ahead! Keep working hard! emoticon

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ANDI571 7/20/2012 10:06PM

    I love your enthusiasm. emoticon

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BARBAELLEN 7/20/2012 10:03PM

    You are amazing! Wishing you good luck and, more important, a wonderful time!
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KARIDIAN1 7/20/2012 9:52PM

    Sounds like you are getting all ready and prepared for anything.

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OPTIMIST1948 7/20/2012 9:19PM

    Busy, busy busy! Good luck,but I dont think you need it. Let us know how everything goes!

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1CRAZYDOG 7/20/2012 9:00PM

    It's getting closer! Wishing you good luck, Barb. You've really worked so hard.

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LEANJEAN6 7/20/2012 8:26PM

    Wow! You are so dedicated!--so good!!! Enjoy the open water swim to-morrow--Lynda emoticon

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STUDLEEJOE 7/20/2012 8:22PM

    emoticon

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Now that I've tried it on all three sports: tri suit review

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Of course, the one I bought on line is not the only such suit available. But for those who commented about comfort: it is comfy except for ONE troublesome feature. The built in bra is hard to clip and hard to keep the netting from twisting. It worked OK for the bike but that bra made it hard to make a potty stop "quick".

I wore it running Tuesday after work in the heat, and between that feature and the camel back water I carried, I ended up with a rub-cut right where the built in bra strap twists if you don't get it "just so".

This morning, before wearing it for a swim... I took my sewing scissors (I have sewing scissors even though I don't sew)... and snipped that feature right out of the suit. I substituted an ImpactFitnessWear (R) Signature sports bra under the tri suit for my swim and I think I have the solution now!

So... for fashion statement... great. For wicking, terrific. For the built in bra? F-

Could it have been a "size" issue? I don't think so, I think it's material for the use. Other than that, great suit.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SLENDERELLA61 7/22/2012 7:21PM

    Good for you for fixing the problem! I didn't even now they made tri suits. So glad to know they do. Makes sense. Glad you've got one that will work for you now.

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ALOHAEV1 7/20/2012 9:03AM

    Ouch on the rub cut, Hooray you found a solution.

Makes you wonder who actually tests these suits or what are they thinking. Aren't you glad you didn't get rid of those scissors. Glad you found a great substitute, sure many of us have filed this away for future needs.



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EBEAMS 7/19/2012 10:35PM

    Hurray for you for being a solution girl instead of a complainer! I love that!

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WATERMELLEN 7/19/2012 9:01PM

    I'm big on snipping out anything that's uncomfortable including those pesky neck or side seam tags. I do have 3 golf shirts with built in bras which are just right for me: but I'm kinda "underendowed". When you're a serious athlete like you: if it's not feeling good it's gotta go!

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LEANJEAN6 7/19/2012 7:47PM

    Well, you are innovative--Wonderful Barb!!! emoticon

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_LINDA 7/19/2012 7:41PM

    Way to fix the problem! I can never wear built ins, doesn't work for me so couldn't buy one that has them. The bane of women's workout suits and swim suits -needing a bathroom quick -grr. My workout clothes as a consequence, are all loose and baggy style. For the pool, I wear a bra top and a pair of small boys track shorts -works for me lol.
Spark on!

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OVERWORKEDJANET 7/19/2012 7:39PM

    Yet another skill demonstrated! emoticon

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ANDI571 7/19/2012 1:58PM

    It's amazing what you can do with a pair of scissors emoticon

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NYKIMMIE 7/19/2012 11:15AM

    Sounds like you created the perfect suit,giggle. Enjoy the day!

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1CRAZYDOG 7/19/2012 10:24AM

    Wonderful that you found a solution. I always have trouble with the built in type bra systems, but you have the right solution!!

Hugs!

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KARIDIAN1 7/19/2012 9:59AM

    If it works and makes it more comfortable you did the right thing.

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OPTIMIST1948 7/19/2012 9:59AM

    I have large "girls" and found that I needed extra support during my tri. Rarely do "built-ins" support me. My solution was just to wear my super bra under the swimsuit. Money is an object, so I'm not getting a tri suit this year, but perhaps next. Thank you for your review as it gives me Things To Look For When Shopping.

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HEALTHYOTTER 7/19/2012 9:40AM

    Thanks for the info! Are you planning to bring your camelback on the tri? I was missing mine when I did the run part.

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MSLZZY 7/19/2012 9:39AM

    You can always modify it to suit for need AND
comfort. It wouldn't be the first time I fixed an
article of clothing for comfort. Hope all goes well
today! HUGS!

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KALIGIRL 7/19/2012 8:50AM

    Love it! Necessity IS the mother of invention!

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