Leaving Hawaii positive, optimistic and determined
April 29th, 2011
10:24 AM ET

Leaving Hawaii positive, optimistic and determined

Stasia Cirricione is one of six CNN viewers chosen to be a part of the 2011 Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge.

"Every defeat, every heartbreak, every loss, contains its own seed, its own lesson on how to improve your performance the next time." (Unknown)

This quote summarizes my entire experience in Hawaii. There were many challenges along the way: Heat that I wasn't used to, wind while riding the legendary Queen K highway, a bike saddle that was less than comfortable, and new and frightening challenges like open water swimming in the ocean.


April 18th, 2011
12:04 PM ET

Tri Challenge in Hawaii: Ready to rock

 Next week, the CNN Fit Nation Triathlon team heads to Kona, Hawaii, for a week of intense training? Follow along on The Chart and on Twitter, @CNNFitNation

It's 9:09 p.m.  Island Time,  2:10 a.m. Kansas City time. I've been up since 6:30 a.m .and have flown several hours but it's all worth it. I'm exhausted but so ecstatic to see my fellow 6-packers and the amazing CNN staff and to see all the new stuff we've received. I've never been so awestruck in my life. Touching down in Kona and seeing nothing but lava fields and ocean is indescribable. This place is gorgeous and I'm so honored and happy to be a part of the CNN Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge with Dr. Gupta. I cant wait for my 6 a.m. swim in the ocean! This is going to rock!!!!!!!! Let the training begin!

Clipping in, falling off: Re-learning how to ride a bike
March 9th, 2011
10:36 PM ET

Clipping in, falling off: Re-learning how to ride a bike

Stasia Cirricione is one of six CNN viewers chosen to be a part of the 2011 Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge. She and her fellow athletes each received a new road bike as part of the challenge but learning how to ride that bike, with feet clipped in to the bike's pedals (for greater efficiency), has proven to be a challenge of its own.

To say that I'm afraid of clipless pedals is an understatement. I don't ski or snowboard for the simple fact that I don't like my feet to be attached to something. Going into this challenge, I was most comfortable with the cycling aspect of it, except for riding clipless.

While at our kickoff weekend, we got to practice clipping in and out while on bikes on trainers. It was really nice to be able to practice on a bicycle that wasn't going to fall over. While practicing, we were told that you're not a real cyclist until you've fallen over trying to clip out. Fast-forward a few weeks to March 5.

My bike is here and I'm going to my local bike shop to get fitted. They get me all squared away and my coach says we're going to the parking lot to ride my new bike and practice clipping in and out. I was thinking to myself, "NO! I don't want to scratch my bike on the first day I get it!!!" We went outside and I surprised myself. I did really well clipping in and out the first several times.

Day 3 after the crash

On one of my last parking lot loops, I thought I'd heard a car coming up behind me so I pulled over to the side of the lot and unclipped on the left. I panicked because my right foot was still attached and leaned right instead of left, and there you have it, my first fall on my new bike. I "sacrificed the body and saved the bike" as it's said. I've got a nice scrape and bruise on my knee but my bike is unharmed! Whew, what a relief.

After my first fall, both my knee and bike are OK, but I've got a great story to tell and probably a nice scar to go along with it.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.