Sunday, November 16, 2008

Say It Ain't So

No blog posts for over a year ot maybe closer to two. There are technical reasons behind that; my work implemented tougher restrictions on internet usage. Hmmm could it be me??

In other developments I'm racing in Ironman Arizona in seven days. It promises to be a life chaning event. More details to follow...

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Fall in NC

I love autumn in NC. The days are still warm, and the evenings are cool. My taper run last evening was awesome; 3.5 miles in 29 minutes. I swam this morning and will spin at lunch today. This is in preparation for the Pinehurst Oly this weekend. Goal times are 25 min swim; 1:20 bike and 45 min 10K. It will be great to break 2:30, but I'll be satisfied with 2:40.

This is a reflective time of year. My second tri season is coming to an end, and there are accomplishments to go around. I did my first ever Oly and HIM races, and knocked 15 minutes off my sprint time. My boys got interested in tri's, finished their first race, and we're doing a kids adventure race together on the 21st. My wife just finished her second 5K, and made some strong friendships; her "Sole Sisters" as she calls them.

Am I fortunate? Yes. I chose this lifestyle, however, so the results are even more satisfying than just mere numbers. My family shares common experiences and supports one another, which go beyond typical parent/child relationships, and bottom line, we have fun. So, this season has been great on many levels and its been balanced. I'm not that eager to take my own tri experience to the next level because it may upset that balance. So, next year will be a grand journey like this one was, and I think I'll be happy with wherever I (we) end up. Is this a great sport or what...

Monday, September 18, 2006

Trick or Treat

My birthday is coming up, and I'm deciding what to get myself. Everyone turning 40 should buy themselves a present. The decision is between 1) tricking out my current Specialized road frame with a newer, faster wheelset, or 2) treating myself to a brand new Cervelo, Equinox, etc. I can't decide. Buying the wheels means I can ride even faster in groups when not doing tri's, but on the other hand, a new bike??? Whatever the decision, the cycling skill have to match the ride; speed is earned.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Duke Liver Center Half IM Race Report

I've waited a few days to post in order to think about the day, and my conclusions are that it was awesome. Being my first half, the course was challenging, but the weather was great and I stayed within my plan for the most part. Here are the results:

Swim 57:36 Really bad, but I am certain of what needs work on this off season. I laughed out loud under water counting the different colors of caps that passed me.

Bike 3:10:53 I'll take this for a hilly ride. After the bonk session two weeks ago, I enjoyed sailing passed familiar sights and erasing those not so good scenes from my mind.

Run 2:15:06 (not so bad) The run course was very hilly, but I never walked, except through aid stations. It was a very powerful experience to have thoughts of my family and training creep into my mind toward the end. I wanted to finish strong for them. I spotted TriDaddy on the course and gave a shout out. He was finishing strong on a difficult course despite a heel issue; he'll rock IMFL for sure.

A weird note: I was 1/3 of the way through the swim, and this black thing kept hitting my left arm as I reached. After a few hits, I realized it was a huge bumble bee! WTF! In the middle of a lake!?!

A nutrition note, I took a total of 5 Lava salts during the race. It was a risk because I had never trained with them, but it was well worth it. No signs of cramping.

Total time with transitions and a 2 minute penalty for not having my race number when crossing the finish line: 6:28:17 Bottom line, I can't wait to do another one. This sport is a drug and I'm addicted!

Friday, September 08, 2006

I Love Motrin

But it makes me sleepy. I've been taking it the last day and a half because I think I irritated my ITB. The outside of the left hip can get sore after a bike or run. I've been experimenting with bike saddle height lately, and it started to hurt. Luckily it has really quieted down with the reduced activity of the HIM taper. I'll be fine for the race, but I'm anticipating some pain afterwards.

Speaking of HIM, Sunday morning will be my first, which is awesome. The water temp will be borderline, but it has been cloudy the last couple of days, so who knows. My goal is to finish strong, but finish nonetheless, so time goals are secondary. I say that but I don't think I really mean it. Seriously, if I limp in in 7-8 hours, I will be mad. 6:15 - 6:30 will make me happy, and faster will be even better.

One thing I've noticed about this race is the higher amount of non-SBR preparation required. The culmination of a well executed race plan will be very cool considering the time invested. Only the race will tell if I thought of the most important ones. I do good research though; when I'm interested in something, it totally consumes me. So, there is more than just athletic satisfaction at stake. A lot has been invested (by me and my family), and we've reaped some benefits already, but race day will be the biggest so far. What a great sport...

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


I've been doing yoga lately, and I think its pretty cool. Its not the most masculine of sports disciplines, but neither are spandex shorts, and I seem to have plenty of them. I'm not into the whole meditation thing, just a good stretch/workout.

The taper is going fine. I have to cut back on coffee because I have too much energy. I just downloaded the official race information sheet I can't tell you how pumped I am to finally try a longer race; a little nervous, but that is good. I'm also excited to see others attempt their first iron distance race. Go IronWil and TriSaraTops!

Other news over the weekend saw my better 2/3rds finally buy her own bike. We went to LBS and she found one she liked, and it was on sale to boot. Not wanting to spoil the moment, I said, "She'll take it!" She looked at me in complete surprise. "Why wait?", I said. After a superficial protest, she picked out her helmet, and we were on our way. We can now ride as a family, which is very cool.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Taper Officially Begins

My biking and running taper started after my bonk session on Monday, but the swimming taper starts today. I did not swim much at all during vacation despite our rental house being on a pond. I swam one morning, but quickly realized that vacationers don't swim right after the sun comes up (only triathletes do). So, the part of my brain concered with safety and self preservation decided that it was not a good idea. Today I went to the pool at lunch and swam a continuous 2100 yds in 47.13. Have I mentioned that I'm a rock? I'll take it.

TS Ernesto has been interesting. My running partner is a guard reservist and was activated. No damage, just wind and rain, but the temp has gone from a high of 95 on Wednesday to 67 today...way to go Ernie.

With the upcoming race, I feel prepared, but I can't quote any technical terms about my training. I don't count wattage (can't for that matter), I rarely pay attention to minutes per mile and use my HRM about half of the time. I do focus on overall time, for example I do know that the 60 mile ride before bonk Monday saw 3hrs and 17 min. I've always trained-by-feel, but a half iron requires more than that. So here is what I've come up with:

For my first attempt, I'm shooting for a 6hr 30min finish. I'll carry two 20 oz bottles of Gatorade Endurance formula for 300 caloriess, one bottle of water, 5 gels (2 with extra sodium) for 600 calories, and pretzels on the bike for another 200 calories. That makes 1100 calories to absorb in 3 hours if I consume it all. I doubt I will, but I'll have extra. I'll carry 3 more gels on the run 300 calories and there will be gatorade on the course, so that makes approximately 500 calories to absorb on the run. Totals are 1780 calories and 2000 mg of sodium; 274 and 308 per hour respectively.

Depending on the temperature I'll need a quart or less of water per hour. There are 3 water hand-off points each on the bike and run. I've not trained with salt tablets, so I don't want to start now. The pantry will be stocked, and I'm comfortable with knowing how much I can tolerate. Thats my story and I'm sticking to it...