Friday, May 9, 2008

My Little Pony(tail)

Today's post was written by a guest of mine (my wife Greta) in response to the outcry on other sites for solutions to a better 'finisher's photo'.  I know that the following advice will be applicable for everyone from David Hasselhoff look-a-likes to the double french-braiding racer. 

On race day it's important to make sure that NOTHING takes away from your transition time. This is what Loren (ED: I've asked her to refer to me as 'the Lorpeedo', and yes, all changes to appearance must be done while moving as quickly as possible) says when I ask him why he can't change outfits between swimming, biking and running. So be it.

I still think there is a way to look fabulous and not take away from kicking ass. Let's take a closer look at this - specifically around how hair can be easily transitioned to look better for those #1 winner pictures.

From what I can see, the same hair style can be used for the swim and the bike (i.e. you have the swim which you have to wear a not-so-lovely cap for and the bike has a helmet) because

a.) nobody can see what it looks like and

b.) there really aren't any photo ops happening during this time.

What I propose for hair longer than shoulder length is either a tight low bun with bobby pins (at least five in place) so the swim cap/helmet sort of fits on top but doesn't mess with the bun. Now, I'm wondering if tucking the bun up under the swim cap is possible? I've never worn a swim cap so I don't know.

If the bun stays out of the swim cap it might slow down your swim time? I don't know these things so ladies (ED: and by ladies, she means Ben and Courtenay) please weigh in.

At any rate - use the same style for both swim and bike but once you get off the bike and you're running, use that run time to make your hair super-cute and winner-picture worthy.

(ED: Here's the grand finale)

As you're running, take out all of your bobby pins and rubber band and stick them in your mouth. Run your fingers through your hair and bring all of it up to the top (sort of like bam-bam from the Flintstone's) and make a pony tail. Loren's mom calls this style "the fountain" as it looks like there is a fountain sprouting from the top of your head. You'll see a similar style on very young baby girls that only have 4 or 5 strands of hair to pull together- I was guilty of this with Sada who, at age 3 was still being called 'little buddy' by strangers which totally pissed me off. Anyway, I digress. Back to the ponytail. When you get the rubberband around the base of your hair, take the end of your pony and start wrapping it around the base of your ponytail. Think Princess Lea and cinnamon buns (ED: mmmmmm cinnamon buns....). Feel around for loose hairs and fly aways. Using one bobby pin at a time, open the ends with your teeth and "sew" the bobby into your bun so that the bobby pin is grabbing the outside of the bun and sort of bringing the hair to the middle or inside. Use as many bobbys as you can. For those of you out there lucky enough to have a bit of wave or body to your hair, this task will be easy and at the end of your run you will look as cute as Tinker Bell for your 'end of race winning photo'. You'll have little wispy hairs at the nape of the neck which are totally sexy too!

ED: There you go, everything you wanted to know about how to look grand-fricking-fantabulous for that post-race photo. 


Christine said...

thanks for the tips Greta, but I feel that might be hard to do while trying to breath, plus buns tend to bounce out of the 'bun' position on my head, (i think it has something to do with my really really thick hair).

I personally like the really tight braids, and I do mean plural, I am a fan of the double french braid or i have been known to do more crazy hairstyles that incorporate using rubber bands and making kind of a 'headband' type thing in the front with many braids in the back. When you have really really curly and really really long (as in down to the waist at one time) hair and are a gymnast, you find ways of making things stay put. Just shift things a little and everything can transfer to the tri-world!

If anyone ever needs hair help I am really really good at it. I did updo's for many a friend in high school and lots for middle school graduations.

Courtenay said...

i love your guest blogger.

i will try this if ben does a test run first. i think the end result could be fabulous if my run were really a walk or a hold-still, and also if i weren't likely to squirt the gels held in my right hand all over my hair?! the good news is my mom will be on hand at columbia to make sure i have a mediocre hairdo!

i have such vivid unpleasant memories of getting my scalp stretched out by FORCED double french braids in 5th and 6th grade (esp. for choir performances) that i am not sure i can go back there. christine i am thinking that this is yet another example of me being like 3 generations older than you!?!?!?!?!?

when i was horseshowing, there was exactly one hairdo that was acceptable (unless you were on small or medium ponies in which case you did double braids). you put a hairnet over your head while your hair is down, pull your hair into a low ponytail at the nape of the neck with your hair over the top half of your ears, secure your ponytail and the hairnet with a rubberband (band and net should be same color as hair), then pull the end of the ponytail up on top of your head and secure with bobby pins if necessary, and place your helmet on top.

this is not transferrable to triathlon. sigh.

Christine said...

yea it took me a while after the years of gymnastics and hair yanking for practices and competitions to allow anyone but me to do my hair. mom is definitely NO LONGER allowed near my head.

Dad's favorite hair-do when mom was out of town was the "stegosaurus" also known as a low pony pulled back gingerly but tightly and then brushed into a point (only possible to do when hair is wet). With curly hair this style lasted until I got out of the car for school.

I have many a school picture that you know mom was out of town and racing because my hair is NOT done in any way, in fact it is brushed out (if you can believe anyone would brush curly hair when dry) and very poofy or fluffy some might say.

oh the hair stories I have.

Kelly said...

wow. i never knew.

Greg Remaly said...

I'm so glad I'm not a girl.

Sarah said...

That was such a brilliant post. Brava, Greta, Brava!

Loren, I think you need to have your guest writer more often.

Any suggestions for the female that is growing her hair out and in the in-between phase of being too short to pull up and too long to just, well, sit there? The best post-race pic I can pull off at this point is to make sure my running hat is still on...otherwise it is just flat out baaaaad.

Maybe this blog needs to feature an "Ask Greta" column on a regular basis. I think Loren would probably find his site statistics would go way up on those days.

Chris Westall said...

I agree with Greg. The most I think about my hair is "oh, push that part down, it's sticking up a bit".

Maybe Greta can do a follow up post on her ideas for men's hair ;-)