Thursday, December 10, 2009


With all the new events transpiring in the last couple of weeks we decided to go back and take the offer we had previously had on the house. Selling right now and for the price we are letting it go for is not something I planned on but we must make tough decisions with the realities that we are now facing.

We are doing our best to keep our eyes looking forward to exciting new things that will come our way in the future. It is difficult to look back but honestly we are ready for a change of pace. This is not what we planned but we must be thankful for the opportunity to move forward and be thankful for what we have and the ability to build a even happier and healthier home.

Keep us in your thought and prayer for the coming days will be filled with major challenges. We have to be out of the house Dec 17. Finding a place for all our belonging is a challenge on short notice. The kids are excited. Were temporaly moving in with Grandpa and Grandma and they ask to go there every night. Be careful what you ask for. Janet and I are doing fine. It really is tough to leave behind our home but it is just a house and we continue to keep perspective on what really matters.

God Bless you all this Christmas season and have a happy New Year.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Training continues to be on the back burner. We listed the house on our own a couple of weeks ago and actually had it sold but the deal fell thru just recently. It is a challenge representing yourself on the home you built with your own hands. We know that selling is the best thing for our "family finances" so it is easy to let it go for those reasons. Still hard when you consider the times spent. Many of my greatest memories of this house/place was having Adam as a neighbor. Those days seem fresh in my mind but the realities of life present a different reality. It will be good to "turn that page," the way things are now.

Another challenge life has presented me with today is the need to find a different job ASAP. The place I have been for the past eight years would like to take a immediate change of course with me.
It is difficult to negotiate terms when the other sides only reaction is "I just cant" with no other reasons given. Not too much you can do when it has nothing to do with you. If that dose not make any sense then you are beginning to get the picture.
So perspective......I can't tell you how frustrating it is to be in this position but perspective says "everybody is healthy." I reflect on perspective often, I believe it is one of the ways the Holy Spirit communicates with us. I am so thankful for that gift we all have. It is at times difficult to clear the clutter for find it but it is a refuge when you find it.
Days, months down the road we will look back and be thankful for this change in direction. All ready so many have come to aid our situation. What a blessing it is to have such great friends. We are so blessed.
Good luck to all those looking for jobs or just at a crossroad in you life. Find "perspective" and never let a negative thought enter your situation or mind. One of the most valuable things endurance sports have taught me is that an ounce of negativity makes the finish line "feel" further away. I have seen many not finish because of negativity. Don't let that be you. Choose to be BETTER. Choose to trust and use the abilities you have reach your goal.
So now I'm training for a new race...a new job. Very exciting....great things are happening. Great things will happen!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Short Run

I went out for a run today for the first time in a month. Between the Marathon being such a mental and physical drain on the system, I also needed to tend to many other things that were on the back burner.
Today was a short run. I really did not want to do it but I knew the feeling I would get once I got out there. The same feeling of comfort that I have every time I get out for a run, bike or swim. Endurance sports have been a saving grace for me since the day we lost Adam. Three years still dose not seem real. At the same time it feels like he has been gone longer than that. Once you get over the idea that he really wont be coming over you get used to life. Not a life that I would like to get used to. One of the many reasons endurance sports is such a blessing is the perspective you can find. As with life not everything goes according to plan. It's not all how YOU would want it. Training and racing are a mirror to that, and it reminds you all most daily that you can choose to like what you have and where you are at and build from there. Or you can sit in the situation, that you don't like to begin with, and stew.
I have been one to stew in the past and there is nothing good about it. My first training season with "Team In Training" taught me one of the greatest lessons I have ever learned. ALWAYS BE POSITIVE! Even when things don't go your way. Keep moving and do your best with what you have now. Push yourself to understand what you have, where you are at and make it better. Never ignore the truth, just make it/yourself better. It is usually not easy to do but the feeling you get when you get there is worth every drop of effort.

Today I got up early for that run that I did not want to take.
After I located all the stuff I needed and hit the road,
I found what I knew was out there.
Peace, and the ability to feel free.
To look out over the landscape and know that God is so big. That I am so small yet He loves me more than anything else in the world.

Getting out is a challenge but if you want to find peace and perspective you need to take the first step. My father has been making that choice for months now and I could not be more proud of him. He is starting to look like a different person.
I am going to shower up and suprise him at work today so I can spend the day with mom and dad at work today. It's just something I feel I need to do.

God bless you today. May He make the difference for you today. It is His love that has kept me going. His love gave us the strength we needed to cope with Adams cancer and it is His love that holds us while he is gone.
No one knows the loss better than Him. Today we are all blessed.
Make the choice to find His peace today and every day. He sacrificed everything to give it to you.
Find your place where you can accept it.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Long Awaited

No good excuses for not getting to this post sooner. Here it is none the less. If you don't want all the mental blather and would rather just read about the race forward down to "long story longer."

Twin Cities Marathon with "Team in Training." So as the tri season ended last July I needed one last fundraiser to put me over the top for the Lifetime race with TNT. The annual "Cornhole" tournament did just that and then some. Never wanting to miss a race I joined the TNT marathon group to do the Twin Cities race Oct 4.
It was a fair challenge going to high miles on the run right away but my legs were mostly ready for it having done two half marathons and a half Iron this season.
I went into the training wanting to post a "Boston" qualifying time and if I felt good during my high miles in training to push for a three hour finish.
I took training very seriously and really enjoyed it. I was lucky enough to have the majority of my trainings fit around work and home schedules. The biggest challenge for me was learning to enjoy the long runs by myself without distraction (music). I grew to really love it putting in solo runs of 17, 19, 21, 19 and 17. I really learned how to better pay attention to my body and its stride. My position, my breathing, nutrition and how each thing is affected by the other.
The biggest benefit I had this training season was training with the team. Coach Jan Ochocki from TNT has more running experience than I will ever have and she really pushed me and gave me incredible valuable training tips to make a three hour marathon goal a reality. Group runs, track workouts and hill repeats with the team are always my favorites and everything together made for a perfect race day.
Race day, providing the weather is fair, is typically a reflection of your training and your mental state of mind. The weather was just right Oct 4 and I have raced enough to prepare myself mentally and physically for a good race, but one thing put me over the top.
As race day drew near I neglected to finish my fund raising and put out a last minute email to raise the last dollars for TNT for my race. I was overwhelmed by the generosity of my fellow teammates that I have raced with in the past. It was so touching to know they had my back and carried me to the "fund raising finish line." With one of those donations came my mental focus from Emily Selenski whom I raced the Phoenix marathon with Jan 08.

"Good luck, Andrew! You've been able to accomplish so many goals, I know you'll make this one. Think 3...1 hour for Adam, 1 hour for Dan, 1 hour for McKenna. We're cheering for you!"
Emily Selenski Wed Sep 30 07:55:19 EDT 2009

I can honestly say that her formula was the key to my success. Racing is 80% mental and work coming into the last two weeks before the race was crazy busy. I had little time to relax and less time to reflect on anything mental. Not good coming into a race but you cannot control everything, so you just have to go with what you have. Emily's encouragement brought it all into focus.

Long story longer....

Race morning was beautiful and my dad was kind enough to drop me off at the Metrodome early so I could warm up. It was a great start to the morning having his support and not having to worry about picking up a car later because the race is a point to point race and finishes in St. Paul. I meet Dan D a good friend from TNT for a early morning jog/warm-up, then we went into the dome to meet the rest of the group. It did not hurt that the Twins were in the middle of their miracle season ending, so seeing the field was a definite inspiration.
As I was reading the night before the race in the "couse info book" I noticed that there was not a pace group for runners less than 3:10. I was mentally banking on not having to think much and just following a pack of runners and pretending like I belonged. Not having this, really threw a kink in my plan so I quickly learned to like the thought of not knowing what was going to happen.
I made my last stop at the "Biff" and headed to "corral 1" for the race start. I moved my way to get just in front of the 3:10 pace group and looked around for someone that looked willing to chat. I found that there are not too many people up front there and even less of them looked willing to chat. No matter. I asked the guy next to me what he was planning to run it in and he said that last year he did 2:55 and planned for the same this year. He assured me that he always starts very slow and about half way through he starts to slowly speed up until the finish. I said "great" and asked if I could try to keep up, he said "sure" and we were off. I did my best not to be a shadow to him. It was a great relief for me to have a pace setter. Of course his "slow" pace was a 6:50-7:00 minute mile :)
My legs felt good and the run felt fast but comfortable. I knew I could do it but we were just two miles in. About mile three you come around the Walker Art center and turn up behind a good hill. I love hills so I really had to keep myself in check as we came down around lake of the Isles I realized I needed to really get into a mental zone. I recalled Emily's hourly encouragement and began my mental race.

Hour one was for Dan. I needed to start with Dan because he one of the most impressive people I have ever known. His example in my life set the spiritual and moral frame work for me at a pivotal time in my life. As life sometimes happenes Dan lost his fight with cancer at the age of 32. Hour one with Dan was key for my to set the frame work of my day and reflect on God's love for us no matter what. Finding joy no matter what...knowing that it is not about us....loving and serving others above ourselves. Hour one was great and the time flew.
I was keeping pace with my pace setter but I really had to focus on being relaxed so not to over compensate with the rest of my body. I tend to tense up and that burns a lot of energy.

Hour two was going to be crucial. I gave that hour to the memory of McKenna Johnson our honored team mate who was lost to cancer during our Phoenix season. What an honor it was to be inspired by McKenna for hour two. She was a bright light in the world that was taken too soon. I have had the privileged to get to talk to her parents a few times since the Phoenix marathon season and they have been an incredible inspiration choosing to continue to work with TNT, fund raising and racing multiple races now. I cannot say enough about them and how they have inspired me. As I would reflect on them and loosing a daughter at such a young age. My mind would quickly jump to my family and the tenderness of childhood, the gift it is and the difficulties of so many that loose their children so early in life. That hour went the quickest. The half way point came and went and I felt great but I knew from my first marathon in Phoenix that those feeling would soon be fleeting. I did my best to end the hour on and inspirational note and did just that as I saw my pacing partner slowly start to pull away.

Time for work...hour three!

Hour three was a no brainier.....Adam. The embodiment of hard work, no nonsense, just do it stupid! His example of ignoring pain during his struggle with cancer has always been a weapon for me in endurance events. I needed Adam for hour three and he did not let me down. I had no doubt that I could keep a 7 minuite pace for the race but realizing that I needed a 6:50 pace just a couple days before the race put a new spin on things. That is where the mental game comes into play.
So my pacer is long gone now. I did my best to keep him in sight but he did just as he said and was really motoring my mile 17-18. I was solo now and coming into the hardest part of the race, miles 19-21. Mile 20 starts the St. Thomas hill. I love that hill, I have run it so many times but only once at mile 20 of a run, and when I did that one, I cramped up bad! What would race day bring me? Be smart listen to my body and "just do it stupid" as Adam would have said. I had been hitting my water and nutrition to that point perfectly and so when I came to the top of the St. Thomas hill feeling half way decent I felt like I had just won the race! I knew there was a long way to go but the major hill challenges were done and I was on pace for my 3 hr finish according the crowd. I headed up the steady gradual climb of summit doing my best to keep relaxed and just keep my wheels turning. I reflected on child hood memories ...skiing... climbing.... fishing... working...playing, often checking my watch to make sure I was keeping pace. As mile 23-24 came I realized that my pace was slowing and it was getting harder to keep even a 7 min pace. The mile markers seemed to get further and further apart and the legs were ready do be done. Mom and dad were at mile 22 giving me a huge boost, all though difficult to keep my emotions in check seeing them while focusing on Adam, I know they believed in me and that they were proud of my efforts no matter what and that made me want to dig deep and finish strong. Each mile now was an eternity and thankfully Janet and Jayna where there after Mom and Dad to give me a much needed boost. There were so many TNT team mates there in the later miles that gave me encouragement. What a gift! I never once wondered if I would make my goal of 3 hours. I just wanted to do my best to keep pace and whatever happened, happened. At mile 24 I made small goals. Knowing the course I told myself to just get past the bridge...then just make it to the church....then just keep that pace around the corner....and once you get to the top of Summit turn the corner it's all down hill! I wish it would have been that easy. It seemed like forever to get to the top but I made it. I knew I kept a decent enough pace to that point, and someone on the side made my day and said "keep it up your under three hours." Just 1.2 miles to go all down hill. The most beautiful part of the course going by one of the most beautiful churches in the country and finishing at the beautiful capitol. Problem is I have come to realize that I do not run faster down hill. My body enjoys going up better than going down so it was a lot of work to keep pace even going down hill. I was so thankful I was going down but it was not as easy I has anticipated. The crowd was loud and lifted my spirits at that point your are running on the clouds but all I could think about was Adam and how much I missed him. I really did not care that I just broke three hours...I missed my brother... but I was happy. I keep racing because he never gave up and neither will I. My goals are not to break records but to do the best I can, whatever that means.

I was able to finish under three because of the people around me. The people that partner with me to help families cope with cancer. I finish strong because of my team mates that I train and race with. I finish strong because the people that are closest to me love me and believe in me and just want me to do my best, what ever that is.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Summer's End

The official end to Summer is Tues so I hear. What a Summer is has been here at the Prest house!
The kiddies are growing like mad and discovering so many things in their wonderful world. Janet is still being challenged by working part time and taking care of the house and us kids. The house is still for sale and we have decided to let it go for a lesser price than it is worth but that is the economy right now and feel we would come out even with what we could purchase. We just have to find someone to want to live her first.
I myself am winding down from a long season of training with TNT. My original intention was to be done training and fund raising with TNT after the Lifetime Triathlon last July 11 but had just enough extra fund raising money to join the Twin Cities Marathon team. That race is two weeks away on Oct 4 and I am very excited to complete another race for TNT. I am however $275 short of my goal and would love it if you would consider joining me in the fight and fuel my race with a dollar a mile. I need just 10 people to join me with a $26.2 gift to TNT. With this race I will have raised over $20,000 for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society since 07.
I have been training to complete the race in approximately three hours. I would like to race the Boston Marathon next April 1. Qualifying time for Boston is 3:15, but I want to see if I can crack the 3 hr mark. The training for this has been fun but very challenging, rather hard on the body compared to Triathlon. If you are in town here it would be great to see you on the course cheering on our TNT team! If you are intrested in joining my race with a donition just click the link at the top of the page and follow the directions.

Here are some pictures from all the fun we have been having around here that has kept me from putting up regular posts.

Pa Pa Victor with Armand at the Fendelet Family Reunion

Janet golfing w/sister Jen and Vanesa in PA

Us with Grandpa Victor and Grandma Bernice in PA

Last tri if the year at Green Lake

Baby Armand not such a baby any more

Hiking on the North Shore
Lake Superior

State fair 09!

Down time at home

Adison's 4th Birthday

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


What a month. I just looked at the date on my last post (if you can call it that) ONE MONTH. If you were to measure time by the things you have done, that was the entire summer in one month.

I'll have to come back to much of it for details, but here are the bullet points.

> TNT Lifetime race week.

What and experience. Every TNT race is so fun and special in it's own way. The cause and the people make it that way. This race I was honored to be the speaker at the pre-race Pasta Party. Pasta parties are, in my opnion, just as exciting as the race. The message I has prepared was decent and then the night before, while I was going over things, I was inspired to go deeper. It is a special thing to be used to convay a message that God wants others to hear.
Race day was great! The team finished well. Everyone finished! My race was solid. I felt good on the swim, but lacked the ability to swim a strait line. The bike felt fast and powerful, but was not much different than last year. Happy for sure. The run gave me problems on the first lap around Lake Nicomas due to a painful stomach issue. Most likely due to consuming a expired Power Gu during the bike. Lesson learned. I was able to run through it and pick up the pace for the second lap. A super race none the less.
I did come close to placing third (by a long shot!) but fourth in the age group was a suprise and it would have been great to get TNT more attention by placing but the difference between 4th and 3rd was pretty huge. My favorite part of the day was jogging the run course in reverse after I finished to cheer on and encourage the rest of the team on the course. What and inspiration to see the determination and the effort put out by everyone. A proud moment to be part of something so much bigger than the race!

>Cornhole 09

What a blast to put on a party the day after Lifetime on Adams Birthday. Sunday July 12 was a day to remember Adam. Play, eat and reminice. A picture perfect day. No big fan fare, just a relaxing day with 70 friends and family doing what Adam loved.
Thank you all for being part of a special day and supporting our family through the years. Thank you also for helping me to reach my fundraising goal for this year with TNT. I was able to reach and exceed!....more to come on that.

>Canada Trip 09

The following Thursday from the Cornhole party Janet and I purchased a pop-up camper and headed to Canada for nine days. So many great memories made. We camped on night on the way up at Turtle Mountian Provential Forrest. Bijou and I swam in Adam Lake and Armand and I ran all the paved roads we could find.
The Fendelet family reunioun was next in Hafford Saskachuan. A super fun weekend meeting many new faces on Janet's dad's side of the family. 120 plus people in a small town makes for good times.
Next on the list was Prince Albert. Lots of time with Janet's sisters, Dad, Mom, and all the cousins. What a blessing it was to see the kids play together. Janet has three sisters and they each have two kiddies also. All close to the same age with exception to Rene who is 11 I think and one yet to be born but all the rest are close. What a blast. I was able to golf with the brother-in-laws once and got a couple of runs and bikes in myself but the best part for me was being with the kids for a whole week. Morining to night dad, mom and their kiddies for nine days. What a blessing that was. Makes one think about priorities. We are blessed.
It was fun to seen Janet spend quality time with her sister and her mom and dad. What a sacrifice she makes living here in Minnesota. What a blessing she is to so many.
Coming home was long but full of new family memories and lots of great experiences in our new pop-up camper.

>CBC Reunion

We were lucky to squeze in dinner with some college frineds from Covenant Bible College where Janet and I meet back in 1994. Faces we had not seen since then. What a blessing to reconnect with great people from such a life shaping time.

>Green Lake Tri 09

We started a new tradition with a new Tri race in Spicer MN last year with "Team Swenson"
It will most likely signal the end of the Tri season as it did last year and this year. Laura Swenson grew up close to the race start on Green Lake and her grandparents have a cabin on the lake so it makes for a wonderful time spent with the kiddies wives and us guys giving it one last hurrah as training leading up to the race is pretty much non existant. We all finished our seasons well this year giving it all we had. I had another good race this year. Struggling on the swim because I had not been in the water since the Lifetime race July 11, and really struggled on the run because I have been training for Twin Cities Marathon and so long miles and tired legs were not much good for a short six mile sprint. Not a complaint at though. I was able to place in my age group for the second year in a row placing 8th overall and 3rd in my age group.

>Another Race

As I had mentioned in the part about my fundraising during the Cornhole touranment. You all blessed me with enough to jump into another race. Crazy fool that I am. Lot's of thing inspired this one. Twin Cities is local. I am over half way to my fundraising goal, with another $800 to go (if you want to help me get there go to the link at the top of the page). We had wanted to do a TNT garage sale to help ration down our possessions anyways. So more to come on that fundraiser. I wanted to do a marathon this fall to re-qualify for Boston next April. I was able to qualify when I ran Pheonix with TNT in 08 but did not have the money to get out there the past two races. Now that Sun Country flys to Boston it is affortdable for Janet and I to make it a weekend out there.
So it is my goal to raise more money for a cause that I am passionate about. Qualify with a good race time and run Boston before I run out of gas and quit with all this training. You never know I may get sick of it?

So many pictures to share but my computer is having issues and I have not been able to link to add them for some reason.
So many thoughts to share along the way over the past month but they come and go ank there will be more to come in that department.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Time crunch

Thank you all so much for making my TNT "tri" season such a sucess.
Ending the year with a party in Adam's memory on his birthday was special beyond words. Thanks to all who joined us that special day.

More to come soon. I need to get pictures downloaded and such.

Can't wait to up date you all on...
Armand's birthday
Pacific Crest Half Iron
Nine year Anniversary
Lifetime Tri
and of course the Cornhole 09 tournament.

More to come soon

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Cornhole 09!

The day is fast approaching. Pacific Crest Half Iron is June 27. Lifetime Olympic tri here in Lake Nicomas is July 11 and my TNT season is over. What better way to celebrate the end of another great year of fund raising and racing than have one more big bash on Adams birthday, July 12!

So, if you are reading this you are invited! We will have a super fun time doing all the things Adam loved to do and play games!

It is designed to be a fundraiser for the Leukemia, Lymphoma Societies "Team in Training," for whom I have been racing for since the summer of 07. Of course it is a voluntary fundraiser. To play in the bean bag (cornhole) tournament there is a fee (donation).
The food and drink donations are suggested. I do want to raise as much money for cancer research and family support but know that not everyone is as excited about that as I am, and not everyone is in a position to give. That's plenty fine around here.
The reason for "Cornhole 09" is to remember an amazing man, my brother Adam Prest.

So come one come all. Give some, give lots, give none, let's all just have a great day doing what he really loved to do. I will have lot's of stories about this years training and racing. There will be many of my TNT mates there if you want to talk to others about TNT.
Enough are the details.

When: July 12......Let's say 1:30 food and start by 2:30

Where: Prest house....18641 Dayton St. Dayton, MN. 55327

What to do next: RSVP by making a donation via my safe TNT web site at it is $10 per person, so $20 per team of two. If you have a team of two leave a comment with your team name. If you are solo, great! We will pair you up. That will secure you spot in the games and help me to know how many boards to have for game day.

If you are not playing or donating please RSVP via my email at
so we can get a estimate on who all is coming. Yes you can show up unannounced. We want you there RSVP or not!

There will be suggested donations of $5 for a food plate and $5 for a drink cup. We will have pop, water, beer, wine and a variety of other libations.

There will be prizes for winners and loosers of the tournament.

Bean bag game sets will be available for a $110 donation to LLS
You can also make this purchase via my online donation site. Just make comment that your donation is for a set of boards and they are yours! custom paint jobs available.

One set will be raffled off. Tickets available at the party or you can get your name in via the web with your online donation. $2 per ticket.....$10 buys you 7 tickets. Note in the comment box that your donation is for the raffle and your in. Do not have to be present to win.

Most of all we want to relax and remember our friend Adam so come out and enjoy the day.

If you have a dish or desert you would like to contribute let me know via the e mail and we would love to add your dish to the spread. or Andrew @ 763-286-5874

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Perspective all Wet

Training and racing update. We are deep in the throws of peak training. The second long bike training took place last Sat. Yes the wet, cold Sat. 12 of us left Afton Mn. and made our turnaround just past Diamond Bluff Wi. Sixty-four miles of rain, wind and cold all day. It is trainings days like this that are make or break for what you will be able to do race day. Attempting to find perspective and fight through the mental desire to quit is the biggest challenge. Can the body keep biking in cold and rain....yes. Do you want to at the time when your warm bed is calling your name, that is the question. Many things come to mind to combat these mental predicaments. Four hours of cold, wet, ridiculous hill climbs are not typically something you choose to do.

The first one that I call upon in my mind is knowing that pretty much anything I choose to do training will be way easier than any chemo treatment. It always inspires me to push on when I think of Adam and all the things he had no choice to go through. I think about all the little kids going through treatments. Suffering through the side effects of their treatments. I think about the fight they must put up to endure to get better. This season I am blessed to be training with Josh who fought this battle just a few short years ago. He was one of the fortunate ones to get better and I am blessed to train and race with him. That is why I will choose to push on. Together we are making a difference in the fight. People's lives are being saved with the treatments that are being found.

Sunday, the day after that dauntingly wet Afton ride, was my first tri race of the season. Typically when you have a race coming up you "tapper" your workouts down to allow you body to fully recover from all your workouts and thus have full energy to give race day. This was the furthest from the case for the Buffalo triathlon this year. Buffalo is a "tune up" race this year for the big Pacific Crest Half Iron on June 27. Last year Buffalo was my strongest swim day and most comfortable race of the year. I am one year smarter and have close to twice the training in at this point compared to last year. I knew that yesterdays ride would severely hamper me from performing my best but I still wanted to give a comfortably strong race. I had many bike issues preparing for the start of the race. Thankfully I was able to get the help I needed to fix all my problems but I was not able to relax or warm up the way one would like to.

Race nerves are becoming more manageable with many races under my belt. The swim began and I set out to have a strong comfortable effort for the first part of the race. About 100 yards into the swim I was at the front of my wave when my body asked me a funny question. It was more of a statement I think. "Do you rally think you are going to do this today?" I continued on thinking that it was something to work through but the feeling became stronger and I soon knew that today was not a day to push hard. The focus of this race quickly changed course by the second hundred yards. "Just be comfortable" became the motto of the swim. So I settled back and watched the bulk of my wave go by and was happy to settle in to a pace less than what I could have done on a "fresh day."
Coming out of the water I was dizzy. I took my time to get on the bike and decided that I would make the bike my strong effort for the day. It is my goal to improve on the bike this year so I wanted to push my limits on this part of the race. My legs felt fine and allowed me to push faster than I have ever been able to push on the bike. Things were building stronger as I approached the half way point of the bike leg and knew that I would be able to carry my pace for the majority of the race. Then one big bump and a odd noise occurred. I pushed on trying to figure out what the noise was. It occurred to me not too far down the road that my Garmin computer on my wrist band came unclipped and was now gone. That is not something you want to loose so I quickly changed course to find the missing computer. Sure enough not too far back it was in the middle of the road. Lucky for me it powered back up and I attempted to get back into the grove I was in. I was able to notch things back up but not quite to the pace I was turning.
None the less the bike was the best I have ever turned out. I learned how to better prepare for racing and the swim to bike transition. A great learning experience.
The run was great also. I have been very diligent with running this year. Making each workout valuable this season has really paid off. It is very important to listen to your body during training. Weighing your food, sleep factors into what you can do that day. Pushing when you can push and running "recovery runs" when you need to take things easy. The race run was strong. I really wanted to pull back on this piece of the race but my heart rate was in a comfortable spot so I pushed myself to keep pace and fight the desire to lay up. I turned in a strong pace and was happy to have won the mental battle and finished with a consistent pace.

I do need to be careful from here out to not push too hard. I fraught many thoughts of "burn out" today and it is only the first race of the season. I am pretty sure that the conditions of the Afton bike ride the day before and the race conditions today were better, but not by much. My sleep factor wan not what it should have been either. I will take the next few days to recover and do "easy, recovery" workouts. I know that this week will be a great building block for a great race in Oregon. I am so thankful for all the support this year and my great friends that I am training and racing with. Many of us had challenging moments today but they are all experiences that can make us stronger.

Over all, my day compared to last years race was close to the same. The swim was way slower, the bike was way faster even with the backtracking and stop. The run was a bit faster and my transitions were about double from last year because I was either was not well prepared and or I just did not care to get in and out that fast. The overall time was less than two minuets slower than last year which makes me super happy.
Most of all I was proud of all my TNT team mates that competed for the first time today. Epically those that rode Afton Sat in the wind and rain and finished a great race Sunday at Buffalo.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Open Water

What an exciting day it was today. The first day of open water swimming. It was solo, yet so exciting because it was the first of the year. Not an easy swim. Memorial weekend was perfect for weather Fri, Sat, and Sun. Today there was a south wind on the river at mom and dads and that meant slow rolling white caps all day. I actually decided to swim up river with the waves so not to be battered by the waves. I figured it would take me a half hour to get to the high power lines that we swim down to so I set that as my goal. It took about half way for me to figure out my stride with the wet suit. A wet suit changes many things in your swim stroke and it takes time to adjust. It makes many things easier but it is completely different than lap swimming in a pool. I take open water any day over a pool.
The water temp was the warmest that I can remember on Memorial Day. That was good because before the swim I needed to make many adjustments to the boat lift in the water. So, I got the to high power lines and looked at my watch assuming that I would be close to my half hour goal and I was just shy of nineteen minuets. Wanting to call it "good enough" I resisted and decided to attempt swimming down into the waves back to home. I should not have to drink any water for the next couple of days. I have only swam in that bad of conditions once before during a race last year and I hope not to experience it again this season. I know I was the better for doing it but it's now 9pm and it is well past my bed time. I will sleep like a baby tonight.
This next week and a half will be the peak hours of my tri training this season. I hope schedules continue to work together so I can get the heavy stuff in.

God Bless and Good Luck!

Sunday, May 17, 2009


It's the same drum beat at the Prest house hold. Never a dull moment. Today (Sunday 5/17) was a recovery day from the Maple Grove half marathon yesterday. I ran a St. Patty's Day race this year that was warmer. Cold wind and 30's for morning temps. Not ideal race weather. No rain or snow though?! It will make average feel outstanding. Janet and I, Erek and Laura Swenson, Steve and Mindy Bursh, Reggie Swenson, Sean Pease all took part in this freeze fest of running and we all finished. The girls are a little achier than the rest of us due to a lack of time for training but they were determined to finish and that they did. Us guys all had good finishes keeping healthy and getting ready for more important races. I was able to turn in a similar time as last year and took home my third race day metal.
One more "tune up" race at Buffalo's Olympic tri (6/7) and we will be in the final stretch to the big Pacific Crest Half Iron in Oregon. My training has been better than expected this year. Things have been jiving will with schedules for me to get important workouts in. That and some really early morning runs and bikes when nothing else works. This year I have had so many reminders of why I choose to race. For those struggling with cancer. Neighbors, friends, and too many new acquaintances I have been in contact with that are fighting for everything moment on this earth. I know that any encouragement is good encouragement to them so I push on letting them know that every mile training and racing I am praying and racing on their behalf.

Janet, Bijou and Armand are such a huge inspiration for me while I train and race. I dwell on them often now that trainings last 1-2 hours or more at times. Thinking about Janet and the incredible job she dose with the kids. Keeping the house in order with me and two little ones is no easy task. All while working four days a week. She is amazing. Little Bijou and her sponge of a brain. Singing and talking up a storm. She takes such great care of her special animals and dolls. What an amazing creation she is. And fast, she is going to be something. My little boy Armand. He has dad's crazy brain. He notices everything, processes and wants to dig right in to everything. Scary! He is starting to see that he can play on Bijou now too. What a hoot to see them two go back and fourth. I remember having a bigger brother and that was one of my favorite things to do when I was board, bug Adam. To see the chemistry between our two brings back warm memories of days gone by. How it reminds me to be a strong, wise father for them to look up to. They are a gift entrusted to us with endless potential. I so desire for them to be inspired by life and all the Joy that is all around us.And to top all the events of the year was last weekends ceremony at Crown College to watch my little sister graduate. We are so proud of her and her amazing dedication to not only to finish but finish well. A student athlete is more that a full time job. Now we hear a lot of complaining about how she needs to adjust to the real world. Soon perspective should set in and she will appreciate this great time of life. Coming out of school is not the easiest thing these days with the job market but there is nothing new under this sun. It will be what we make of it. Good luck sis and great job we are so proud!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Gods Work

A fitting title for a mothers day. I have been wanting to post so many things that I have experienced in the past two weeks. They will have to all roll into one.

The thing that has really stuck in my head lately is a couple that we did some work for last week. They are in the process of adopting their 9th child, each one being a special needs child. Their latest blessing will require 24hr nurse care and a more balanced home climate. What a gift they give, what a sacrifice their lives are. How is it that we define the word hero. In my book they are at the top of the list. Compare their sacrifice to mine and I have nothing to complain about....ever! The thing that really stuck with me was seeing a little shed in the back yard. I had to get something by it and happened to see what it was. The mom has all of her scrap booking stuff in the shed so she can make stuff for the kids to feel extra special. Their house is decorated with amazing pictures and things that she has made. On the door is a plaque that reads. "It is not about getting through the storm, Its learning to dance in the rain." Now that is perspective. That is living a Spirit Filled life. That is God's work lived through one persons life. What an inspiration.
Telling that story on this special mothers day 09 is fitting. It is because of a mothers love and personal sacrifice that gives us all so much joy. I have been so blessed to be raised by a loving self sacrificing mother and now to have married a beautiful woman that models the same love that Christ first gave us. What a blessing mom's are.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Action Packed

What a blessing it is to have things to do. This weekend certainly had no shortage of that. I had my first half marathon of the season at the Get in Gear half. Great weather and a well run race for the first of the year. As that was happening Janet had planned to get the house ready for our first open house Sat. afternoon at 2. Instead she ended up at urgent care with Armand. That turned out to be the thankful but frustrating brocitias "just let us know if it lasts more than one more week." Good but frustrating.
So we both got home with less than two hours to clean the week old mess in our hour. Luckily the kiddies wend down for naps and we went into super cleaning mode. Got things done and the showing was decent with five couples coming through. One with good interest. It's tough to have the house on the market but we are ready to move quickly at this point.
We went to our friends the Kroska's for dinner while the open house was on and enjoyed the company of our dear friends that we had not seen for a long time.
Sunday was a nice slow start with the kiddies. Dad was up early for a forty minute bike and 10 minute run before the kiddies woke up. Tried to get loose from the race yesterday morning. Good thing I did that early because the weather did nothing but get worse the rest of the day.
Breakfast and play time then off to Grandma and Grandpa's to put the dock and lift in for the boating season. Not a good day for that but we did not have much choice on that. We are so blessed to have great friends to help with big projects. Brad Bone, Mark Larson, Wendy and Creighton, Dad and I muscled things back into place. It is a great time to remember times with Adam and the sign of great day's and warm weather to come.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Good Morning

It's crunch time. So many things going on all ready we have resorted to early morning workouts starting this week. The house is for sale, fundraising is fun work this year and keeping proper balance with the most important things has made afternoon workouts impossible. Wed mornings are early bike days and Thurs mornings are early run days. Of course its not easy getting out of bed and hour and a half earlier but once I get into things outside it is so wonderful. Coming home on foot or on the bike with the sun coming up over the hill with the church steeple in the forefront is something that I will never tire of.
Get in Gear half marathon is in the morning Sat 4/25. The first of two halves I'm doing this year. This one will be a solid pace for me but not all out. Not enough training, not enough recovery time, it will be wiser to take this one a bit easier. It looks like cold and rain is on tap too so we will enjoy what we have and make the most of it.
Things with the house on the market are slow. We have other places that we can see ourselves in for great prices so we will most likely have to let go of our house for less to make that move.
The kiddies had a bit of a rough week with chest congestion. They were great all things considering but no fun to see your kids sick and wore out. Armand is into everything and is finding his voice more and more. Bijou continues to enjoy everything, what a princess.
Janet continues to be a fantastic mom and care taker of her hubbie. Her part time job has been crazy busy lately and she is enjoying the challenge lately. We hope to make the move to a lesser mortgage sooner than later so she can be home even more.

Make the most of today....If that gets by you there get after it tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


So many things are going on right now it feels like the middle of summer. Great things but a lot of things.
The house is on the market now and for some reason I feel the need to do and change all the things that I have wanted to do for the past five years. I all most have all those things done and it feels great to get them done.
That of course is edging out some of my training time but not too much. We are past the base building mode and into the fun speed and endurance mode. Lots of challenging workouts that really feel great.
The weather has finally come around for me to get an outdoor bike in last Sunday. Man that was great. I may even dare to run in shorts this week if I can get out.
The kiddies are wonderful. Two certianly calls for all of your attention, but it is so much fun you don't mind all the things you can't get done any more. Bijou is becoming such a helper with Armand. He love the extra attention. Armand is a monster eater, not picky at all and it shows. He is nine months now and 2o pounds and 30 inches. My guess is that he will be walking before 11 months but we will see.
Mentally and spiritually I have been challenged with many things going on and am enjoying the challenge that each thing brings. I feel blessed with the experiences my life has brought me and continue to enjoy the grace and love that I so much do not deserve. Lately I have been focused on being thankful and positive. It is becoming very clear to me that God want's nothing less for us and when I really think about it I have nothing to complain about. I suppose I should act like it then. Joy is a wonderful thing.
Big fundraiser at our house this Sat. The second annual "triathlon of games" should be a fantastic time. My fundraising is a challenge this year so this should give us a little boost. If you can make it, bring $20 an be at our house no later than 6:30pm Sat night.

God Bless

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Miserable : )

The majority of training lately has been in less than perfect weather. Cold wet, windy, some peeks of sun but not the norm as of the last two weeks. Before one of my runs I thought that the weather was down right miserable for a run, who would run in this kind of stuff. You guessed it. I gladly run in all most everything. Miserable trainings are the benchmarks that make great weather, even average weather seem down right perfect. If you choose to find a way to like the miserable stuff that makes everything else wonderful!
I like to think about those that don't have the opportunity to do such things. Those that don't have the ability to run, or those that are sitting in a hospital somewhere wishing they could be anywhere else. Then the weather becomes a blessing.
I had the pleasure of being on a swim relay team with Eric our honored team mate this week. What an inspiration that little man is. If all goes well he is on his way to consider himself cancer free soon. Because of the efforts of what we are doing so many more kids get to say they are cancer free and that makes everything I do worth while.
Eric reminds me so much of Adam when he was 13. Tall skinny bean, glasses and sharp and kind as can be. A real go getter, not afraid of anything. I remember how excited he was last year when he was looking forward to his last spinal tap treatment. Watch a kid get excited about a spinal tap and your worries seem to lessen a bit quickly.
You never know the importance of something until it hits home most of the time. That is how I feel about TNT. Not a perfect organization like all the rest but what they are doing is so important. Life saving important.
I am thankful for the good fortune that we have had with our kids thus far and will continue to fight for the families that are fighting for the very lives of their own children. TNT is so much more that a great training and racing experience.

By the way my fundraising is, as you can expect, a challenge this year. I need to have two thousand raised by April 30 to commit to my races and have $1800 to go. So if you are in a position to support what I am doing with any size donation, consider looking at my fundraising web site.

This years training has been top notch so far. The base building stage is mostly complete and am looking to bring things to another level of performance in the next two months.
I recently did a four way trade/swap for a new Triathlon bike. I gave up the Buell motorcycle that I bought new in 98. I still cant believe that I traded my baby for a petal bike. This is not ordinary petal bike that is for sure. And the motorcycle was litterly rotting in my garage so better to see it get used. It now belongs to my coach Bob now and so I am excited to see him race it. The new Tri bike gets here Tuesday and I am more that just a bit excited about it.

We are meeting with a relitor friend of ours soon to get the house on the market. A crazy big step for us but we are confident that it is the right finicial move for us to move on and build equity in something else. I don't know how I will feel when the actual for sale sign goes up in the yard, probably sick. Like I said it is best.

Doing what is right is not always easy.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Season Opener

Race one is now behind us. Last year I ran in the "100% Irish for a day" race. It was a 10 mile race, two laps around Lake Harriet and one around Calhoun. I loved it and had to do it again this year. My training has been great this season thus far. Very balanced, I would say that I am at least a month a head of last season at this point and less weight to loose coming in.
My goal this season is to improve my bike portion of my triathlon races and keep if not increase the swim and run.
I have signed up for one race a month though July, the first three being running races. Last Saturday was #1!
This year I felt I was in better shape so my goal was to stay injury free and to push hard to see where I am at right now. I came in right where I wanted to be with a 6:47 min mile @ 1:07:43 finish. I was hoping for anything less than last years 6:58. So I was delighted about that. I did however work much harder than I expected. I was exhausted for the last three miles of the race. My sleep and nutrition was great the two days coming into the race and race day was great. No problems at all. I am so excited to have the first one done!

We had a mini vacation last week with mom, dad, Erin and Adison, up at Breezy Point Resort. A wonderful relaxing time if that's possible with three little ones entertaining us. We spent a lot of time every day in the pool, reading and playing games. We came home in a blizzard and now this week it is in the 50's and 60's. What a perfect way to say good by to winter....I hope!

Work is a bit slow, but it is allowing me to keep up with things around here. Bijou continues to be our little sweet heart. We have entered the copy cat stage, what a riot. Armand is becoming pretty durable now so they have been playing together much more. That little guy is all ready standing up on everything and soon will be walking along everything. Armand is like his sister with teeth, eight in eight months and more soon to come. He is going to be a hand full when he gets to walking. All ready non stop, getting into everything he can reach.

Church continues to be a blessing. The kids love their child care rooms and the people we meet have been so genuine. Not what we expected from such a big church.

Spring is officially here this Saturday and after this winter we sure deserve some good weather!

What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Winter Warm Up

I know most people think that winter still has its grip firmly around us. Coming from someone who has worked may days outside in the bitter cold days of December and January, these days feel like spring is right around the corner. This usually means that I would have been getting in great training miles in outside running with one less layer but the physical condition has been keeping us in check as of late.
For the past two and a half weeks Janet and I have been experiencing the effects of long term sinus pressure. Just the other day it started to loosen up for us thanks to the doctor prescribed meds. Like the un-wise person I can be, I did not want this to slow my training down, so I attempted to continue with my schedual. Not so smart. So, this last week we have done about a third of the perscribed workouts and it is now, all most, past and we will resume full trainig this week.
Training has been very solid this year. Learning alot as always and feeling much more solid at this time fo the season verses last season at this time.
During this time of "rest" I have enjoyed more play time with the kiddies and done some more reading of a book I started called "The Shack." I highly recomend it!

Armand is just 8 months now and a speedy fast crawler. Pulling himslef up standing, smiling and laughing as always. He just started his Cheeroes diet and is not at all a pickey eater, just like his sister. Bijou continues to eat most everything you put in front of her. She is such a little social angel. She will actually introduce herslef by name now but you have to be able to hear a whisper to hear her. Still a bit shy. Hair now to the middle of her back and brightenes every room she is in.
What a blessing parenting has been. Often I watch them play and wish I could make time stop so I will always remember this percious age. Each moment you are in, good or bad, is a great moment to remember. It is either a time to learn and be grateful, or a time to feel blessed and be grateful. The choice is to be still and know you are belssed and loved no matter what.
Make the most of today, it is the only one we will ever have.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Happy Valentines

This Valentines was a special one this year. Not at all what anyone would expect as typical Valentines fanfare, but better in it's own special way.
There were lots of flowers involved but none from Janet or I. There were cards involved but none exchanged between Janet and I. Honestly there was no big heart warming, romantic day between my love and I.
It was filled with unexpected blessing that only God himself could deliver. In the hustle and bustle of the weekend. One in which Janet and I were suffering intense sinus infection headaches (all week). The first blessing came in the form of a side job for me. Seriously bad timing but seriously needed to help cover the six medical bills we have been trying to pay off. The other Valentines miracle was that my parents went out and had there own V-Day dinner all to them selves. Way to go dad!
Valentines is extra special in our family because it's Jayna's birthday. Twenty-two this year. That just means that we all just that much older! She wanted to have some friends over to our house for her special day. We had a great time with her fun friends. A fun filled, long night full of games and laughter.
But Sunday was the greatest day. Sunday we shared a service with Erin, Adison, sister Amy and her two kids, Derby and Stella. The kids all had a great time in there sunday school rooms and us adults were treaded to one of the most moving, inspiring sermons I have ever been a part of. There were so many wonderful thing at work there. We serve an amaizing God. I have had the line from some worship song stuck in my head ever since. "my saviour...he can move the mountians, my God is worthy to praise!"
That will be a Valentines weekend to remember. Nothing like you woud expect. But often times God will to that to you.

So Blessed.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


The new year has been full of many personal challenges. I am so thankful for my amaizing wife and our strong family and friends that encourage us to live every day to find the good. I am so thankful for the challenge that was given to me when Adam passed, to be better and not bitter. That echoes through my life daily. I know that I can not make it on my own.

We have not made it to church(open door) much this winter, yet every time we do we have been so blessed by the amaizing worship and messages. Two Sundays ago pastor gave a talk on the concept of how we treat each other. His focus went in a different direction. He got to the core of the matter, who we are. Each one of us is His beloved. He is so proud to call us His. Do we look at our selves as such. Do we treat each other as such. If the people around you are the treasure of God, do you see it? Do I see it? It has stuck with me like gum on my shoe.

The TNT season has kicked off and I am super excited for our first team training this Wed. I have been able to get my self into good shape coming into this season, so I have high exceptions for myself this year. Being two years in now I think I can really ramp things up in my races personally. I am more excited to help guide my TNT teammates to doing their best. This years team is full of returning alumni and it is going to be a blast learning from one another.

Life at home has been full of fun firsts. Bijou is learning so fast, good things, challenging things, lots of things. Parenting is just getting fun! Two is what they said it would be. What a blessing to be entrusted with guiding her ever blossoming world.
Armand is hitting a serious growing streak. Eating and sleeping like mad. Every time we gets up he is stronger. Crawling and sitting up on his own now. Seven teeth now and more on the horizon. A happy, happy little boy. Sister chooses her time to play with him, but when she dose he lights up and laughs so much. He even laughs when she is on his back or tummy jumping up and down as if he was a bucking bronco. Except he is just laying there laughing! Yep, we gotta keep a close eye on those two.

One of the most special things this winter, was getting Adams old three wheeler going with the help of Ryan Theunissen. Being able to get Bijou out there around the yard and over the river was such a great connection to the past. I know that Adam was proud that it is in use again.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Winter Wonderland

Sure we had to wait out a week of sub-zero temps but it is all worth while. If nothing else it makes 20 above zero feel comfortable. The past week has been great. Hanging out with the kiddies, getting things done around the house, this that and the lat. I have now committed myself to getting a loose run, bike (on my new trainer from christmas), swim or x-country ski. The variety has been great for getting back into the swing of things.
Today I was out at Elm Creek with a friend from last seasons team, Jim Sheldon. A great athlete with fantastic consistency and amaizing drive. This guy did six marathons last year! Jim is going to be signing up to do the Pacific Crest half-iron with us this year and I am excited to train with him another year.

The new season of TNT kicks off in less than three weeks and I am excited for the challenge of being a "Team Captain" this year. Excited to balance the schedule of putting my family first, training with the team, and getting my personal trainings in. My plan is to go to bed when the kids go down. Or shortly after anyways around 8pm. Getting up 4 or 5am ish and getting some work outs done before work once or twice a week. We will do what we can and not worry about the rest.

The kids have been a blast. Bijou has been singing songs with us now and can count with us, and do her ABC's by her self if you can get her going right. It is just so fun to see her creativity and imagination blossiming. Armand is growing by leaps and bounds. Now all most seven months, he is just starting to pre-crawl. It looks like the army crawl. And he has three more teeth to boast of. Five in total now, two down and three up. They are both amaizing blessing to our lives, smiling and laughing. Challanging at times but that is what it is all about. The big picture is beautiful. My prayer is that I may model Christ to them in my life, and honor Him, by guiding them into the beautiful little people he has designed them to be. They are so precious. What a gift. I have loved all the blessings and challanges that life has given me through the years, but it is such an amaizing gift to be called daddy. So much credit goes to my beautiful wife. What a strong hold for me. What an amaizing mommy.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

A Need to Race

It's official the new year is upon us. The food the fun the additional pounds happily gained. What a grand month. From hosting two family Christmas parties, New Years, Bijou's second birthday on New Years day. What a month. Now winter stares us down, severely entrenched with its cold and wonderful blanket of snow. I have wanted to get out on those cross country skies I bought years ago but they continue to collect dust in the garage.

As life has it's funny way, I have found a real need to race again. As you all know racing is a great outlet for me. I have found it to be that for many things in my life. In the beginning it was a great bridge to dealing with Adams death by doing something I love and raising money for cancer research and family support. Once again life has renewed its self with fresh challenges and thus a lack of comfortable sleep if any at all at times. As life goes at times these challenges are no fault of our own at times, and thus you have little to no control of them being over your head. Therefore I had a need today to get my mind re focused on the race season ahead. So the money is spent and the registrations are in. I now have a clear focus on things ahead and a great season starting in just seven weeks.

My season will start March 14 at the 100% Irish for a Day 5K & 10 Mile I did this race last year and loved it. It is a must for me again. It is a good motivation for early training on the cold days.

Next is a new one for me. Just needed something in the month of April so a found the inaugural Get in gear half marathon on April 25 they have a 5&10k too

Last year in May I did the inaugural Maple Grove half and is another must for me this year. May 16th They also have a 5k option so here is the link

The tri season starts with Buffalo June 7. last year I did this for the first time and loved it. They also offer a sprint distance and is a great one to do if you are a first timmer.

I may squeeze the new Trinona race in because of the hills but other than that the next one will be June 28 in Sunriver Oregon.
The big TNT half Iron! I am super excited about this one, all my other races up to this are a tune up. I am a team captin for this race and am encouraging some other crazies to join me on a life changing journey.

After that is the olimpic lifetime fittness tri (also with TNT) on July the 11th I really loved the specticle of this big city race with the pros and the crowds.

Then we gear up (or may be down) the season into the Green Lake Tri Aug. 9
Another great small town race with great friends to end the race season.

After that I look forward to family vacations and hopefully setteling into a different house. I'm sure many things will change around the race schedual but no matter what it will the greatest race season yet.