Gary Jackson: Fire When Ready Pottery
A Chicago potter’s somewhat slanted view of clay & play
Categories: bike, sunrise

It’s the last day of August, and sadly it kind of feels like the last day of Summer?!
Camp is over and it’s a much cooler morning as we roll into the Labor Day Weekend.
Another beautiful ride before I head back into the studio to continue glazing, glazing, glazing!!!

Categories: bike, sunrise

As the sunrise gets later & later, the start of my ride seems to be getting darker & darker. With good cloud potential, the majority of my morning ride is now in darkness & early dawn. Saving the colorful sunrise surprise for towards the very end of my ride! Talk about anticipation!

 

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Categories: bike, friends, special events, workout

What a difference a day makes!
Sunday we ran our last two races in high temperatures & sticky humidity. So hot that they even shortened the International run course due to the red-alert conditions… after WE had already run that leg.

And here are some of the TRIPLE CHALLENGE details…

And for the TRIPLE CHALLENGE… the athletes taking on the challenge do all three distances in two days! SuperSprint on Saturday, and then International/Olympic followed immediately by the Sprint on Sunday.

Of course my favorite part is the bike!
Basically we ride up & down a closed Lake Shore Drive, all the way up to Hollywood and back. Then we turn towards the city and ride on middle Wacker Drive. A covered section of the “underbelly” of the City… SO COOL… so fast… kinda like riding in the Batcave!!! And then onto the “secret” bus lane thatI didn’t even know about that takes you south past Soldier Field and back. Great fun riding on roads closed to auto traffic!

When you finish the bike, you change clothes quick and head out for the run. We follow the lakefront south around the Shedd Aquarium, south of Soldier Field and McCormick Place to turn around at 31st Street Beach. You cross the Finish Line for you International Race and then need to head straight back to the lake for the start of the Sprint race. And it’s a LONG huff through the Finish Line festivities, past Buckingham Fountain, across Lake Shore Drive to pick-up your wetsuit & goggles at the Triple Tent and back to the Swim Start. Then it’s another swim, bike and run to get to the Finish Line AGAIN!!!

So hot & humid that THIS is the actual photo the professional photographer took
with my iPhone camera at the Finish Line… all sweated up from the Sprint run!!!

So sweaty that I couldn’t even swipe to the right, and the camera lens was all fogged up. Guess that’s what happens when the heat index goes well over a hundred!!! Sweaty fun racing with Chris & Beckie doing International followed back-to-back by Sprint to complete our Chicago Triathlon TRIPLE CHALLENGE!!!

Three races. Three medals.
A challenging weekend with the heat & humidity…
and a shortened window to make it to the third race… which I made with just seconds to spare!!! I was literally the very LAST of the Triple racers who made it into the water, just under the deadline! Talk about stress.

Another fun weekend for the Chicago Triathlon TRIPLE CHALLENGE
and my third triple… my Triple Trifecta!

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Categories: bike, friends, special events, workout

Getting ready for any triathlon is a bit anxiety ridden. Packing all of the the gear you’ll need for all three events throughout the day. All of the clothing, all of the gear, as well as all of the fluids & nutrition needed. Knowing that your race starts at 6:00am with a big jump into the lake. So you count time backwards to determine what time you need to leave to give yourself plenty of time.

These signs have been posted near my place for about a week. Telling everyone that Lake Shore Drive will be closing on Sunday from 5:00am-12:00pm… as the bike course will be taking up the southbound lanes. So I planned accordingly… knowing that I would need to get on Lake Shore Drive prior to the 5:00am closing!

I counted my time backwards and decided that I needed to leave around 4:00am to get there in plenty of time to settle in, run through the days races in my head, and et acclimated to the Transition Area. But when I got to the entrance ramp of Lake Shore Drive… it was already closed, barricaded and pylon coned!!! Obviously closed a LOT EARLIER than the posted 5:00am!!! Needless to say, I got there quite a bit later than I would have liked. A bit rushed getting into the Transition Area and setting up my stuff. But I made it down to the Swim Start with my wetsuit to find my friends Chris & Beckie waiting to start the race with me. And I was so rushed… that I actually put my wetsuit on inside-out!!! Still flipped after yesterday’s SuperSprint swim!

As I was parking in the Monroe Street Garage, I ran into my friend Tracy who was also getting ready for her race… or at least two-thirds of her race. She’s suffering from a bruised heel bone and will only be swimming & biking, with a friend doing the run for her.

Both a bit tired & groggy… but excited and ready to get on with the races at hand!!!
Swim, bike, run… swim, bike, run. The final two-thirds of my TRIPLE CHALLENGE!!!

Categories: bike, friends, special events, workout

Saturday was the first of three…
as Chris, Beckie and I tackled the Chicago Triathlon TRIPLE CHALLENGE
with a quick SuperSprint at Foster Beach.

And just for the record, this guy is not built for sprints!!! Just sayin’.

Categories: bike, sunrise

Clouded in all the right places. My morning bike ride started out dark & gloomy….
but WHOA and behold…
SPECTACULAR!!!! Even if the wind was blowing strong,
the waves were crashing and the lifeguard flags were dangerously RED!!!

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Categories: bike, special events

With plenty of notice along the lakefront like these signs…
this weekend will be the time to Tri, Tri, and Tri again.

Categories: bike, sunrise

With this morning’s wind, waves & clouds, there wasn’t much of a sunrise to speak of.
But yesterday… started with a smattering of clouds and cleared up in time for the crazy influx of people for the Air & Water Show! All the more reason to ride EARLY in the morning!!!

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Categories: bike, sunrise

Quiet & warm this morning. A stillness accentuated with foggy humidity.
Layered clouds front & back… with the dark ones blocking the colored ones!!!

 

Categories: bike, sunrise

Not a lot of difference. Can’t really tell where the water stops and the sky begins???