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  • WE ARE…

    ... THE PERKES. We still consider ourselves newlyweds [we've been married for almost 5 years]. Our firstborn, Jace, is now 2 years old, and became a big brother when Sofia Rain joined our family in November 2012. We are from the East Coast [Luisa is from MA and Nate is from NH]. We are Bronco's Fans [We've lived in the Boise area for almost 5 years]. We are travelers. We are athletes and we are dancers. We are enthusiastic about food. We are spontaneous. We are addicted to the sun. We are in love.

    Most importantly... we are HAPPY. We are the Perkes.

Turkey Vultures & Cow Manure…

Never in my life, would I ever have imagined that yesterday, on July 18th, I was going to run a Triathlon. I’ve never been an athlete. I’ve never really been ‘in shape.’ I didn’t even like running until this summer. I always used ‘bad knees’ as an excuse; come to find out, that ailment is pretty easy to cure. You just run through it!
At the start of my race! Looking pretty chipper, right? Not for long.
The Trek road bike I rented for the day!
My inspiration: Chelsea!! SHE was worried about this Tri, but she ran the San Diego Marathon last month, so she was definitely way ahead of me on the ‘Prepared Spectrum.’ When I first started training I could always count on her to be as excited for me as I was for myself at different milestones. She was an amazing cheerleader, even when I’d come to her and say: ‘GUESS WHAT! I RAN 2 MILES TODAY!’ when that same day she had run 13!
I was warned, but NOTHING can prepare you for the ‘stampede’, very similar to the one in the movie Jumanji. I thought I would be comfortable in the water and very quickly discovered that I was out of my league when a gentleman actually SWAM OVER ME. A little unexpected.
[I'm the blue dome in the middle].
After my swim, I ran back to the transition area, washed off my feet, put on my helmet, shorts, socks, shoes, Ipod and booked it for the road. Here I am making sure my water bottles are ready for the trip. This was one of the hardest parts of the WHOLE TRI. We climbed out of the canyon on a very steep one mile hill, cutting back and forth on the switchback roads. I just put the bike in the lowest gear and pedaled my guts out.

During this part of the race, I ran into an unexpected obstacle. I rode through some of the most beautiful country side EVER! There were vibrant greens in the rolling hills of alfalfa and the glowing gold of wheat. Farms, though, sometimes equal trouble. A HUGE tractor pulled out in front of me, towing a load of fresh manure. Fantastic. Not only was the smell overwhelming, but I actually had to dodge the cow pies. There was hay and debris in the wind, and I even got some in my eye. Great. Cow poo in my eye. I didn’t think I would need my goggles for this part of the event.

The picture above is on my way in from the bike.


Leaving on my run!
Apart from the beginning of the bike, the run was the overall hardest part of the entire event. The start/finish and ALL the transitions were in the same place. When I came back from my bike, I ran around the lake and on the opposite side, HIKED up this trail and over boulders that led me over ancient bridges and a crickety old stair case, which we ran up to come out of the canyon. When we reached the top, relief was NOT in sight. It was desert, with heat waves coming up off the pavement and an oasis in the distance. I did all my training in the early morning, and was NOT accustomed to having to run in the mid-afternoon heat.
Coming back from my run!
The LAST leg of the race!
Crossing the finish line!
At that point, I wanted the camera out of my face, and I just wanted Nate to hold me.

A little light-headed….
Victory!! WE DID IT!!
Then we just added ‘cliff jumping’ for good measure!
The view from my bike/run!!
Nate is VERY proud of this picture.
He took it on his Iphone.
My VICTORY Ice Cream!
Besides watermelon and water, nothing sounded better than a Soft-Serve Ice Cream from Dairy Queen.
Well actually, add to that a WHOLE DAY with my husband, a cold shower, soft PJ’s and the new Harry Potter Movie!
It was the best day ever….
  • This was a Sprint Triathlon, but a longer one at that. Normally, they are a 500 yd. swim, a 14 mile bike and 5K, or 3 mile run. This one was a 1/2 mile swim, a 17.1 mile bike, and a 5.25 mile run.
  • It took me 3:12:01
  • Special Numbers: 13, 2, 44, 3, 104, 47, 16, 4
  • 13 = the number of roadkill I saw during my bike
  • 2 = the number of turkey vultures circling me during my run
  • 44 = MY number!
  • 3 = the number of people I passed on the bike
  • 104 = the temperature that day
  • 47 = after weeks of training, my resting heart rate
  • 16 =the number of people who didn’t finish the race
  • 4 = what I placed in my age group!!!

show hide 10 comments

Belinda - Wow! I just can't believe you did that. How amazing. I take it this is just the beginning. At least you are starting young. I have a friend who is 45 years old and ran her first Marathon. She just wanted to prove to herself that she could do it! And she did it! And you did it! Congrats!
P.S. Nice calf muscles!

Maritza Lastres - miRA.. ahora eres una atleta..nadadora y ciclista..ejale..! como cambia la vida.. ja jaja!.me gustan las fotos… y tu premio.. ja un helado eso es perfecto.! ja ja ja!.. te echo de menos amiga :( te amo mucho!.. y espero poder saber pronto de ti!.. !
chau besitos…y un abrazo de oso

..Juntas para Siempre!…

Shannon - That is amazing. I am so proud of how much work you put into the triathlon, and I'm sure you are proud of the rewards. It's true. You have never been an athletic one, but with determination and hard work look at how far you have come. What an inspiration!!!! Love you so much.

PS. How did you not chafe wearing a wet bathing suit while biking. lolol

The Perkes Family - Luisa!
Congratulations… what an accomplishment! Under the the circumstances for which you trained in such short notice, I was worried about you, but never once doubted you. I new you could do it, thats the kind of person you are, you get something in your mind and no matter how hard, you will do it. Despite the hardness of the race, you had some very memorable moments… I LOVE the Cow pie part.. that was so funny, I could imagine the whole thing. Anywho, what a great thing you have done, and now the addiction has started for you too… you'll never be the same.. There is something so amazing about finishing something so hard, and pushing your body farther then you ever thought it could go. There are no limits now, anything is possible. We have so many athletes in the family now! We need to do a family race, and a vacation afterwards…wouldn't that be so cool?

Can't wait for the next race..

Love Ya!

Josh - Wowzerowzers!!! You are awesome. What an amazing accomplishment. Having completed two much shorter (whimpy in comparison) triathlons, I can only say I am so impressed. I know too well the absolute exhaustion that comes from multiple events in the same race and in addition, your terrain certainly didn't sound all that level. Since when do boulders, bridges, and stairs belong in a triathlon? Us Midwesterners really like our flat courses…oh wait, that's all we have available. Regardless, we are so impressed. You rock!

Bree - Like I said earlier…you are AWESOME!!!!!! What an accomplishment…and I still can't believe you'll be doing another one next month! So impressive Miss Luisa!! And so funny about the tractor with manure…way to overcome the poo! haha!! See you soon! :)

Ken and Jen Perkes - I smiled, then I LAUGHED, then I just sat there in AWE! Luisa, you are truly worthy of being called a hero on so many levels!!!

Since reading this blog entry, I have marvelled again at how blessed you and Nate are to have found each other. You both have this amazing ability to draw SO much more out of life than most of us do.

You are truly an inspiration to me!

With great love and admiration,


P.S. I ALWAYS love your statistics! You are a delightful writer.

Mandy - Luisa! Oh my goodness, I am SO proud of you! You are amazing! I KNEW you could do this, but I was scared about that heat! I'm never complaining again:) You know, a lot of people in the world just won't get off their butts and be healthy, but you've inspired me to keep going with my workouts and MAYBE I'll do a marathon some day too:) It looks like SO much fun! What an accomplishment! I love you sista! Love-M

The Irons - #1 you are my hero
#2 HOLY MAJOLLY you're awesome!!!
#3 i MISS YOU like crazy
woman you are soo cool! that's so amazing that you were in a triathlon! i've always wanted to do one…but like you, i have the "knees issue". :) but i WILL do it!! how are you? we need to talk and catch up on things. I LOVE YOU!! have a beautiful day!

Jen Perkes - WOW!!!! I am so PROUD of you!! My goodness. The pictures of you at the end of your race reminded me of when Dad and Katie ran the marathon a couple of years ago…I actually teared up as I remembered the amazing flood of emotions that hit the runners as they finished the race. It was so humbling to witness. I can't even imagine all that it takes out of you to do something like that. I stand in awe! What a woman!!
Hugs and love,

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