Monday, September 24, 2012

Leadman 125 - Redemption

After the World 70.3 Championships, I knew I did not race anywhere near my ability. Bottom line was I did not drink enough fluids, which caused me to flirt with heat exhaustion. I was back to training after 2 days and noticed quickly that I rebounded from the Vegas heat. I needed redemption, so I signed up for Leadman 125/250. Lifetime Fitness offered two races and the numbers represented the total kilometers travelled. I thought about the 250k for a few minutes. I knew I could get through a 5k swim and a 22k run, but did not have the training under my legs for 138 miles of cycling. Especially since you biked up Bachelor twice. I opted for the 125. It was advertised as 2.5k (1.55 miles) swim, 106k (65.87 miles) bike, and 16.5k (10.25 miles) run.

There wasn't any fitness to gain in the 10 days leading up to the race. The key was to nail race pace efforts and not add any fatigue while keeping the workouts short. All of my swim workouts were great. I even swam 5200 yards in the Lake on Sunday and felt awesome. I knew I was going to have a great race until Tuesday morning. I ended up tweaking my back at work trying to move a security cover around. I hoped it was nothing. I tried to run that afternoon, but only managed 6 steps because of the extreme pain. I called my A.R.T. and she squeezed me in before they closed. I tried to swim on Wednesday and it was pathetic. I had to use the ladder just to get into the pool. I had to warm-up with open turns because I wasn't sure my back would cooperate with flip turns. Every time I pushed off the wall, pain radiated in my lower back. I could swim as long as I pushed off the wall gently. I swam the rest of the workout with a pull buoy. That afternoon I rode my bike. Surprisingly, I felt good on the bike and my back did not hurt. The only time it hurt was when I got off the bike and stood straight up. There was still hope that I might be able to race. Thursday morning I attempted a short easy run with the dogs. No pain. Everything was coming into place. Was this a sign that I needed to rest more before races? Before driving down to Bend, Oregon, I stopped in for one more visit with my A.R.T to make sure I was squared away then headed south. It was a nice drive down Highway 26 to 97.

On Friday, I linked up with Lindsey and her friend Matt, who was from Seattle. We rode over to the Web Cyclery to get her bike shifting fixed. It really sucks when you can't get into your big chain ring. Then finished up with a few minutes up toward Mt Bachelor before heading to packet pick-up. Along with our race necessities, we were given a bag, long sleeve technical shirt, cycling jersey and visor. I looked down at my watch and realized it was lunch time. I was standing in line to get a sandwich from Jimmy John's. Lindsey said she was going over for sushi. I love sushi, so quickly got out of line and headed over. The sushi was so good that I went back for dinner. After lunch I went back to the hotel to set-up all of my gear, so I could drop it off at both transition sites. I ended up taking the longer drive to the swim start at Cultus Lake. It is a must if you are ever in Bend. This ended up being the route for the bike back to Bend. I racked my bike and decided to swim without a wetsuit. The water was clear and the temperature seemed to be in the lower 60s. After 9 minutes of battling chop, I turned around and rode the current back. I dried off and heading back to town. It took me 30+ minutes to get warm from the swim. I even had the heat set at 80 in my car. Maybe the water was colder? I spent the rest of the evening relaxing in the hotel. My support crew rolled in a little after 11pm. Thanks to the Schmitzs' for bringing my better half!

I woke up at 2am with stomach pains. This was a first. I fell back to sleep. I woke up an hour later in a hot sweat. I really started to question if I would be able to race. The alarm sounded at 5:05. My stomach still bothered me. I asked my wife to drive me to the race. I was not sure if I could even race. As we drove to the race, I glanced at the temperature gauge several times. It read 40, 28, 34 along the drive. Really?!? The stomach issue persisted. Would I even be able to race?

I pumped up the tires, placed my water bottles, and made sure everything would be ready to go. I was planning to ride with socks, so I left my shoes on the ground instead of clipping them to my bike with my socks stuffed inside. They decided to delay the start of the 250 racers because one of the buses got lost. They started them at 7:20. I went back to the car to warm-up and put on my XTERRA VENDETTA wetsuit. My wave was scheduled to start at 8:09. I had plenty of time to relax. Right?

SWIM - (28:23 my watch time, 29:06 actual time for 1.2 miles)
I swim out to the start and look up to see guys lined up. I assume it is 30 and under males because the time is 8:03. I hear the air horn and continue to swim closer to the start. Once I got close enough to the race boat, I yelled out, "Which age group?" A man yelled back, "Men 35&over." "CRAP!!! REALLY?!?" I sprint to catch-up to my wave. I actually felt good during the swim. After the turn around buoy I start to pick up the pace. One of the guys in my wave almost ran into me because he was on the wrong side of the buoys. I continue to swim along the buoys. I know I am only a couple hundred meters away from the swim exit. A kayaker comes up to me and points toward shore. I assumed we had to swim around the first buoy before heading to shore. Sure enough. I look to my left and see several swimmers nearing the swim exit. UGH!!! I break hard left and sprint the last few meters. I quickly exit and run past the wetsuit strippers to my LYNSKEY.

T-1 - (2:11)
I quickly take wetsuit off, put on my OAKLEYS/helmet, and slip my feet in to my cycling shoes. I chose not to use the socks. Good thing I put toe covers on my shoes before the race. I threw my wetsuit, goggles, swim cap, socks, gloves into the bag. Would I regret not putting my gloves on?

BIKE - (2:59. 22mph for 66.3 miles 3100+ft elevation gained and top speed of 49.7mph)
In the first 10 seconds, my hands started to hurt. I almost headed back to transition to grab the gloves. It didn't help that the first 10-15 miles were shaded with trees and very little sun. Luckily, my hands started to work again as the temperature warmed up. I passed a few 125 racers who started in earlier waves. It was very scenic and challenging ride. It started with flat to slightly rolling in the first 35 miles, then sustained longer climbing for the next 15, and finished with a long descent back to Bend.
  • During the ride, I saw several squirrels and chipmunks. A total of 10 with 3 as road kill.
  • I stayed on top of my hydration and calories. I drank every few minutes and consumed 5 bottles with 1300 calories.
  • The only frustrating part of the ride was shifting from the small chain ring to the big. Several mechanics have looked at the bike, but can never find a problem. It only seems to happen as I am cresting a climb. Anyone have an idea?
  • Only 3 guys passed me during the ride. Joel Maley (5th OA) passed me around 10 miles. I kept him in sight for the next 15 miles, but he eventually pulled away. Mark Loreen (8th OA) during the long climb between mile 40-50. I passed him back at the top of the climb. The last guy was part of a relay and he passed me in the last few miles in town.
  • I averaged 30.8mph for 19.2 miles on the long descent.
Near the top of the final climb, I saw Linsey Corbin cheering racers on. After cresting the last climb, I flew back to town. As I neared transition, I slipped my feet out of the shoes and prepared to dismount.

T-2 - (51.56 seconds)
I jumped off my bike and ran into transition. My rack was second on the right. I quickly racked the bike, slipped my feet into my NEWTONS, grabbed my visor/water bottle, and headed out.

RUN - (1:16.00 7:52 per mile for 9.75 miles)
From the beginning of the run, my quads felt tight. I figured this would pass after a few minutes. Not a chance. The run started out flat in the first mile. Two racers passed me, a relay runner and Daniel Soper (6th OA). The next few miles had either short steep hills or longer not so steep hills. My legs were not happy, so I walked most off the steep hills and split the longer hills up into jog/walk/jog. I popped a salt tab to try and fix the legs. It made it worse as my legs cramped up. I drank extra fluid and the cramps faded. My legs finally loosened up in the last few miles as it was mostly downhill and flat. My legs cramped a little more in the last mile. I sucked it up and crossed the finish line.

I finished in 4:47.32 and 1st Age Group/7th Overall.

Thanks Karen for encouraging me to start the race!

I would definitely do this race again or even try the double distance.

My 2012 triathlon season is officially done. Thanks to all of my sponsors!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

World 70.3 Championships

After training and racing triathlons for over 7 years, this was the hardest race by far. I took the last couple days to process and try to figure out what went wrong. It was a challenging course (Swim in 83 degree water, bike 56 miles and run 13.1 miles on rolling terrain in 100 degrees with little to no shade). I made sure to consume extra fluids and electrolytes the 2 days leading into the race.

I had a solid swim that put me in a good position. I felt good thru the almost half mile transition and the first 23 miles of the bike to the turn around. I snugged my watch before the swim and noticed it getting looser as the bike ride progressed. Then things seemed to go from bad to worse. My neck started to hurt, left tricep cramped on and off, and my power numbers dropped considerably. This all occurred during the easier part of the ride as we had a tailwind back to town. I felt very hot and got off my bike for a few minutes to try and cool down. I actually thought about going back to the hotel as I came up on the turn. I was not in a good place. I struggled to produce power. I finally got into transition to pass off my bike. My legs would not run, so I walked through transition. I heard an athlete yelling at the volunteers to find his bag. I yelled, "Look down at your feet!" The guy finally looks down and sees his bag. I walked into the tent and sat for several minutes. I decided to get on the course. I saw Karen and she gave me a few words of encouragement. I tried to run. My legs and heart wouldn't comply. I walked almost all of the race. I made it to the finish line almost 7 hours after the gun sounded. It was my slowest half-ironman ever. I guess I looked awful. Lindsey and Karen told me to head over to the medical tent. My blood pressure was a little low, eyes were sunken, I could hear my voice echo in my head when talking, and no urge to use a bathroom. I consumed 100+ ounces on the bike, another 100+ ounces on the run, and another 100+ ounces after the race. It took me 15 hours to pee.

A big thank you to all of the volunteers who stood out in the heat!

View from room at the Westin

Night before the swim

Run out of T1


Pre-swim in my OOMPH RACESUIT

Post race, 15lbs lighter, half dazed and confused.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Bonney Lake Sprint Tri

At the beginning of the week, I decided to race in Bonney Lake. I didn't know it was going to be a tough week of workouts. It all started with Tuesday. I swam my fastest 1000 (13:45). It was a hard effort. I probably would have gone a little faster if there wasn't more in the workout after. That afternoon, I jumped on my trainer for some heat adaptation. It was 90 minutes of pure suffering with no fan or air conditioning. I wore a sweatshirt, tights, and a beanie. I knew it was going to rough because I was already sweating walking around my place in shorts only. Twenty minutes in I was already having trouble maintaining power. After 30 minutes, my heart was trying to jump out of my chest. I threw off the beanie. My only goal now was to make it another hour. I have done workouts like this before, they were much shorter. I almost passed out when I finished. I had to hold onto my bike, so I didn't fall over. This workout trashed me. On Thursday, I still felt some affects. I got through a swim and finished a tough run. I ran a few long hill repeats on a 4% grade. I was worthless on Friday. I didn't know what to expect at the race.

Saturday morning, I left the house at 6AM. It should have taken a little over 30 minutes to get there. Instead it took almost an hour. I drove several miles past the turn and had to backtrack. Not a great way to start the morning. I finally arrived at transition a little before 7AM. I picked up my packet, set up my race area, and then headed out for a 30 minute ride on the course. I didn't bring gloves and my hands were not happy about it. As I rolled back into transition, the Olympic race had started. I check everything in my transition area then head back to the car to don my XTERRA VENDETTA.

SWIM - 7:41 (5th fastest)
I started in the middle drawing a straight line to the turn around buoy. BOOM. I take off. There are a couple guys just ahead of me. I get into their draft and end up following them the entire swim. I quickly exit the water and start stripping the wetsuit down. I think the swim was 550-600 meters. At least that's what my GARMIN 910XT had.

T-1 0:42
I quickly took the rest of the wetsuit off, put on my helmet, and headed out with my LYNSKEY. I passed two of the faster swimmers and left in 3rd.

BIKE - 32:43 (3rd fastest)
The course had some rough roads with a few short hills. It took me a few miles to pass the guy in second (Eric). Then another few miles to catch up to the lead guy (Bryan). I was in the lead until I turned onto a dead-end street. I don't know why there was a race sign pointing to turn on the street. Luckily the other 2 guys did the same, but since they were behind me they turned around sooner and put me back in third. I quickly passed Eric. I noticed we were close to transition, so I started to get my feet out of my shoes and stayed behind Bryan.

T-2 0:32
I jumped off the bike, ran to my area, and racked the bike. I slid my numb feet into my NEWTONS. Eric left just before me and Bryan was right behind me.

RUN - 18:27 (2nd fastest)
It was going to come down to the run. This was a tough run course. It was rolling with a couple of steeper hills. I made my move on Eric in the first mile on a hill. I guess those hill repeats on Thursday paid off. I knew Eric was close behind because I could hear his footsteps the rest of the race. I tried to put more separation between us, so I pushed the pace on the hills. It ended up working as I got to the finish line with about 15 seconds to spare.

OVERALL - 1:00.07 (1st overall)
It looks like if I didn't make the wrong turn I would have been under an hour.

Monday, August 20, 2012

2006 Couer D'Alene revisted

I headed out to Spokane last week to spend some time with my youngest brother. I can't say little because he is 4 inches taller than me.

I decided to use this time to get in some good training in warmer weather. I finished with 19 hours of training in 5 days.

Saturday I met up with Jon and Phil and we rode around Mt. Spokane, climbing 3800 feet. The highlight was seeing a pickup deep in a ditch. There was only a few inches above ground. I switched out gear and headed out for a short run. The heat was hard on me. I knew I had to get used to it if I was going to race well at Vegas.

The same crew linked up on Sunday and we headed toward Coeur D'Alene. We decided to ride the old ironman course from 2006. This was the first ironman I completed. I still remember that day well. It was a rough day, as the temperature soared into the mid 90s. This time with a few ironmans under my belt, we rode the course in reverse. It was just as challenging if not more. We turned around at higgins point and started the regular course. Another 3800+ feet of climbing for the day then a quick short run. I felt much better today. My body was adapting to the heat quickly. After a few hours of relaxing and refueling, I went to Witter Pool. It was a 50 meter pool. I planned on putting in some good work, but my legs didn't want any part of it. I faked my way through the swim to finish with 3800 meters. We grabbed a bite to eat and went to the movies to watch "Ted". It was hilarious.

Monday morning I rode easy with my brother for a little over an hour and a half. Right before lunch I swam an easy 2500 meters. I finished the day off with an easy short run.

The plan on Tuesday was to cruise for 90 minutes then throw in a few 5 minute hill intervals. I miscalculated the distance and ended up riding almost 3 hours. The highlight of the ride was the bison I saw in the field. The rest of the day was similar to Monday.

Wednesday morning started with hill repeats on a course similar to Vegas. It was tough. I felt like I was taking baby steps near the end as the pitch steepened. My brother took the day off, so I went out for a super easy bike ride. My legs were toast. After refueling and a short nap, I squeezed in my last swim in the long course pool. We ate then went to watch "The Campaign". It was funny in parts.

I packed up Thursday morning and hit the road by 7AM. The drive was uneventful except for the dead cougar I saw on the shoulder. The hill work I did the previous 2 days caught up to me. My glutes were really sore. It was nice to be back home and still have warm weather, 90+.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Calgary 70.3

Originally this race was not on the schedule. A few friends wanted a shot at qualifying for Vegas 70.3. I didn't get a full bike at Boise 28.5 and this race fit better within the season. We left DuPont early Friday morning. We stopped several times throughout the drive and pulled into Calgary 14 hours later. This was the furthest north I have ever been.

Our home away from was the Hyatt Regency. The best part of using the race hotel was we didn't have to go anywhere to pick up our race packets. This was not an ideal location to stay because T-2 was 5 miles away and T-1 was another 40 miles further. There was also an issue of parking and not being able to watch the Olympics opening ceremonies because cable was not working.

Saturday morning we ate breakfast then hopped into the pool for a short swim. I guesstimated the pool at 15 meters. I quickly whipped through 50 lengths without getting too dizzy. I went down to grab my race packet. They added a $20 fee to register with the ATA (USAT 1 day registration equivalent). My frustration was that it should have been an option online when registering for the race. Particularly since they were taking cash only and the nearest ATM was not working. Finally after getting cash and receiving the packet, I got everything ready to take out to the transition areas.

Saturday was a day of many frustrations. Especially if you aren't willing to pay for roaming and data charges. The navigation system in the car was somewhat unreliable, sometimes it found our destination and other times wanted us to drive several hundred miles away. We eventually found our way to T-2 to drop off our bike to run bags. We rode our bikes along the run course for about 20 minutes to spin out our legs. After cleaning our bikes we drove to the race start and dropped the bikes off. Once we got back to the hotel, we ordered pizza and got everything ready to leave early Sunday morning.

Somehow we managed to be in the car and ready to leave at 5am race morning. This is the first race when arriving early to the race site did not guarantee a close parking spot. The volunteer said he was alternating cars parking close and far. Really? We walked down and set up our transition area. On the way back we stood in line for the port-a-potty and chatted with Magali Tisserye, who ended up as the top female. I put on my XTERRA VENDETTA and warmed up for a few minutes.

Swim - 29:59
It seemed like everyone decided to sprint to the first buoy. I had so many people around me. It thinned after after the first right turn. I felt good throughout the swim until my goggles were pushed into my eyes. UGH!!! I came out of the water second in my age group.

T-1 - 2:06
I used the wetsuit strippers, grabbed my bag, and ran up the hill to my LYNSKEY.

Bike - 2:30.14 (23.1mph for 58 miles)
The course was very scenic. At one point I saw a hawk land on a post on the far side of the road and eyeball me. A few seconds later on the near side I saw another hawk. Pretty cool stuff.

T-2 - 1:26
I quickly dismounted and then tried to lift my bike over the curb. I almost dropped the bike. I racked the bike and put on my NEWTONS. I stopped just before leaving transition to fill up my water bottle.

Run - 2:03.41
I felt good for the first couple kilometers. It seemed like my effort was very high and my stomach did not feel right. I tried to walk off the pain. Nick passed me right after I started walking and ended up having a great race himself. Every time I attempted to run, I would experience pain in my lower left side within 60 seconds. I knew it wasn't going to be my day. I walked/jogged the rest of the race.

Finished 13th in my age group.

I honestly thought I drank plenty during the race until I realized that I did not pee for 7 hours. I consumed 60 ounces on the bike, 20 ounces on the run with coke at several aid stations, and 30 ounces of water/gatorade after the race. I must do a better job of hydrating or Vegas will be the same result.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Boise 28.5 not 70.3

I thought I was prepared to race in almost any weather. I was so grateful that my buddy flew over for the weekend. He drove us to the top of the Lucky Peak Reservoir and we walked for about 10 minutes.  It was in the low 40s and raining. I was actually wearing my helmet to keep my head dry. We arrived into transition around 1100AM. I walked over to my bike and starting setting everything up. My hands were getting cold. My friends were not faring as well. As we were walking down to the car, they announced the bike was going to be cut to 15 miles because of the winds/rain. We sat in car with the heat on full blast for 30 minutes. I think everyone was ready to throw in the towel. I am fairly certain I would not have started if we didn't have a car. There was no shelter near the transition area and it rained the entire time.
While warming up, I put on my XTERRA VENDETTA and my swim cap. As we were walking uphill back to transition, several athletes were taking their bikes and pulling out of the race. I decided that as long as I could maintain body heat, I would swim and then go from there. The pros were already half way done. I took off my shoes with 5 minutes before my wave started. It wasn't a lot of fun standing on wet concrete with cold temperatures.
SWIM - 29:32 without run up into transition (GARMIN 910XT had it at 1.27 miles)
It was a one loop course, clockwise. I lined up slightly to the left of center. The water was COLD, 57 degrees. We were off. I felt like I had a good line and in no time I caught up to swimmers from the previous wave. It was hard to tell where I was at my age group. After the last turn buoy, I spotted another orange cap. We basically swam side my side until the last 100 meters. He picked up the pace. I ended up 2nd out of the water in my wave. I peeled off the XTERRA off on the way to the bike. I saw wetsuit strippers and used their help to get the wetsuit off. As I stood up, my left hamstring kind of cramped up.
T1 - 2:28
I put on my helmet, stuffed all of my swim gear into the bag, grabbed the LYNSKEY, and headed out of transition. I saw Jared and Guy and gave them a quick nod.
BIKE - 35:24 (GARMIN had it as 14.07miles)
It was a 1-2 mile descent. I was very conservative. I saw a guy in my age group fly by me on the way down. I passed him back, once I started pedaling and never saw him again. We had to take a bike path for a few hundred feet. Just as I enter the path I pass a guy. He yells, "Hey no passing!" I did not respond. I was thinking really. You started how many minutes before me. On the path we had a hard right turn. There were several athletes from the other waves in front of me. One of them clicks out and stops at the turn, so all the rest of us come to a near stop. I luckily stay upright and finally maneuver my way around the turn. Once off the path, it was time to start riding. It was hard to gauge how hard I should ride knowing that a half marathon was still to come. I decided to ride as if it were still 56 miles. I made sure to drink several times because of the cramping earlier.
T2 - 1:41
I racked my bike and ripped open my run bag. I grabbed the NEWTONS and had no problem putting the right shoe on. I could not get my left foot in the shoe. I finally looked down and saw my pinkie toe on top of the shoe with all the other toes in the shoe. My feet were that numb. I finally got my foot in. I grabbed my visor and water bottle and headed out.
RUN - 1:26.02 (6:34 per mile)
I felt good at the beginning of the run. A few of the pros were coming through onto their second lap. I settled into a nice pace. A few guys went by me. I had no idea which age group they were in because of the compression gear. After 3 miles I started picking up the effort.  I caught up to a guy wearing a Mark Allen Online (MAO) jersey. I ran behind him for a couple of miles. He picked up the pace on a decline and put 10 feet on me. I stayed in a groove and slowly brought him back. A couple miles later he put on another surge. This time he pulled a few hundred feet away. It was perfect timing on his part because I was starting to hurt. My left foot had a hot spot. It felt like a blister forming. My slowest miles of the race were 8-10. Oddly enough, I started to real MAO back in again. I passed him at the aid station as he went to get nutrition. He tucked in right behind me. I just finished all of the nutrition I was carrying in the bottle. I started thinking about strategy now. I tried to increase the pace slightly. The foot steps were still behind me. I grabbed a cup of Powerbar Perform at miles 11 & 12. He was still there. I decide that I do not want to sprint at the end, so I pick up the pace. The foot steps slowly start to fade and I have broken away. I tell myself I only have a few more minutes. It ended up being my fastest mile of the race, 6:14 and 15 seconds faster than the previous mile. I was running up last few hundred meters toward the finish line and I see Guy cheering me on. I hear foot steps and think MAO is back. Can it be? It ended up being someone else who was charging hard. I tried to match his pace, but it was too much. I crossed the finish line exhausted. I had no idea where I finished or even how fast I ran. I scroll through my watch and see my half marathon. I was shocked. It was my fastest ever half marathon. I hadn't even run that fast in a stand alone run race.
FINISH - 2:35.34 5th Age Group/53rd Overall
I qualified for the World 70.3 Championships in Vegas.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Neck pain and sprint tri

My neck started bothering me late Sunday night. I woke up feeling okay. I went to the lake for my first wetsuit swim of the year. My body was tired from the hardest/longest bike of the year. I realized I swim like a snake when I bilateral breath. I swam much straighter breathing every stroke. The neck pain increased over the next couple days. It was so bad on Wednesday that I had to visit JPT pharmacy. I felt better on Thursday. I signed up to race a sprint in issaquah a few weeks earlier. Orinially I had no intentions of racing. I changed my mind Friday night. On the drive up to issaquah I wasn't sure if it was going to rain. It did, but after almost most racers finished. I was glad my little brother picked up the race packets the day before because it made race morning a breeze. I set up all my stuff and waited for the race to begin. It was a short swim (Garmin 910XT had it ad 434meters). A few guys jumped out front at the start. I passed a couple of them after the first buoy. I couldn't tell how many people were in front of me. As I stand up to start running onto shore, I see a blue seventy wetsuit. I yelled, "No, you gotta be kidding me." It was Karen. She stood up at the same time I did. I stripped off my XTERRA VENDETTA, put on my helmet, and grabbed the LYNSKEY. Transition was not set up well. I had to run across other rows of bikes. As I tried to exit, two people were blocking me. The race just started sending the duathletes to begin their race. It was chaos. I finally get out and jump on the bike only to have my shoes flip upside down. I come to a complete stop. Luckily I didn't fall over. I get myself situated and start pedaling. There were lots of turns in the first couple miles. The course was an out and back with a few small rollers. I spun out on the downhills. I was riding with 2 other guys until they picked up the pace on the last hill on the way out. I watched them slowly pull away on the return trip. I quickly rack the bike and put on my NEWTON'S. I head out and hear footsteps behind me. Two guys pass me quickly and I had no response. The course was mostly on grass with uneven terrain and some damp spots. I ended up finishing 6th overall. They had bratwurst post race. They were delicious. I didn't feel great during the race or horrible either. The funny thing was I had no soreness post race. Maybe I didn't go hard enough. Maybe my neck was a factor. Maybe the killer weekend of training the previous week caught up to me. I am not sure. I have felt great the last 2 days. It will be a great race this weekend.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

No workouts today

Normally I workout everyday one to two times a day. Every once in awhile I will have day off during the week. Today is a rare day being a Saturday where I have no workouts scheduled. I feel like I am missing something. It doesn't help that is is sunny with blue skies.

Training is been going much better this year. Last year I felt like I would have 1 good workout and several bad workouts. This year it is the opposite. My body needs a low-key workout or two after every 3-4 solid workouts. It doesn't matter how hard you train if you don't allow your body to recover.

My swimming endurance is improving. I am maintaining 5x400s at the same speed with short rest. My power numbers on the bike are up 10-15% from last year. I am running well at almost 40 miles a week. I have a couple of races coming up in the next two weeks. It should be an interesting season.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Flat on trainer

I didn't think it was possible, but I flatted on the trainer yesterday. It was one of those days where things were amiss. I switched the road tire with the trainer tire. I must not have checked it closely. I was in the middle of the workout, when POP. I saw a bulge in the tire where the tube was trying to come out. I thought I could get away with fixing the tube placement and just reinflating. No such luck. I put the bike back on the trainer and it went flat again. I took the wheel off and replace the tube. I then proceeded to finish the workout. It takes the cycle ops a few minutes to warm-up, so I had to push bigger gears for a few intervals. Otherwise training has been going well. I have had several good workouts in all 3 sports for a few weeks. I think they finally caught up with me late last week. My legs started to get heavier and heavier. A few lighter days of training seems to have me back on track. I swam a crazy fast set on Monday. 10x50 on 40. I touched and my 500 was 6:37 short course meters. I attempted to do it twice and only made 6 as my middle toes were going completely numb. Next big race will be Boise 70.3 in June.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Lavaman 2012

We arrived into Kona Saturday afternoon. Originally the flight was supposed to arrive at 11:40AM. The airline changed the flight to depart 3 hours later. This made the afternoon very busy. First we stopped at Bike Works (I highly recommend them for service or if you need to pick up some gear.) and assembled the bikes. After 30 minutes of sweating, we headed north to the Hilton Waikola to pick up our race packets. We made it there before they closed with 1 minute to spare. Back to Kona to pick up our bikes. I realized that I did not pack my nutrition, so I picked up 3 packets of Gu Brew Blueberry Pomegranate (Ben swore this was the best stuff ever, so now was the perfect opportunity to try it.).

Race morning, we were up before 4AM and pulled into the race site by 5. This gave us a parking spot close to transition, less than 100 yards away. We set up our areas and then went back to the minivan to chill. As we were sitting there, they announced the race will be wetsuit legal. I never even thought that was an option. Oh well. Then they announced the swim warm-up would close 25 minutes before the start. I put on my XTERRA SPEEDSUIT and headed over for a short 10 minute dip. While I was swimming, I saw a turtle under water looking up at me. I saw him in the same spot both ways. It was pretty cool. Maybe good luck!

Pre-race with XTERRA Speedsuit

SWIM - 22:10
I am always amazed at how many people start at an all out sprint. I end up passing most of them in 200 meters.I saw another turtle. It was tempting to stop, but I had to finish the race first. I decided to try and breathe less for this race because that is how I swim my laps in the pool. It seemed to work as I came out of the water feeling good.

Transition 1 - 1:32
I ran up to transition jumped through the kiddie pools that were set-up to clean the feet and headed to my LYNSKEY. I overshot it by one row. I quickly turned around and ran to my area. As I was taking my speedsuit off I noticed a button popped off my race belt. I ran over and grabbed it so I wouldn't lose it. I put on my OAKLEY's & new RUDY PROJECT WINGSPAN. 

BIKE - 1:02.38 (23.8mph)
Since I forgot my nutrition, it was going to be an experiment to see how my body was going to hold up. It took me several miles to get into a groove. The miles seemed to go slowly. I saw Chris McCormack (Also known as Macca. He is a World Champion and one of the greatest triathletes ever.) going the other way. He threw me a hang loose and it sent me a burst of energy. I rode stronger and started passing several people the rest of the way. Thanks Macca!!!

Transition 2 - 0:46
I jumped of my bike and quickly ran back thru transition. I put on my NEWTONS, grabbed my visor and water bottle full of Gu Brew.

RUN - 41:08 6:38 per/mile
We start the run on lava rocks, very unstable. I hear footsteps behind me. I focused on my breathing and slowly start to pull away. It was hot out there. I see a few guys up the road and I slowly start to pass them as the run progresses. After 3 miles there are only 4 people within sight. I pass 2 within a half mile. I catch the other 2 at mile 4, right before the run turns to more lava rock and sand. It was narrow, so I patiently sit behind both guys as we are zig zagging our way through the last 2 miles. I pass one of the guys at the aid station (benefit of running with your own bottle). He tucks in behind me as I am right behind the other guy. After 5.5 miles I decide to pick up the pace to see if I can pass the last guy and break them both. No guts no glory. I pass the last guy and hear both of them right behind me. I continue to push as we are getting closer to the finish. The last 100 meters is in thick sand, ugh. I created enough of a gap and get to the line 4 and 7 seconds before the other 2 guys.

This is one of the most challenging run courses I have done for and Olympic Triathlon. I tried something different for nutrition and it seemed to work. I didn't have any cramping and didn't need any salt tabs. I finished up 5th in my age group and 16th overall out of almost 1200 racers. I was even lucky enough to have Macca stand with me for a picture. It was a good day.

Macca and me

Monday, March 12, 2012

Tuscon Training Camp

Last week I spent time in Tuscon, Arizona. The weather started out warmer in the first few days 70-90 degree highs. It changed quickly to a high in the low 60s and lots of wind. I managed to get in 23.5 hours of training (23,300 yards of swimming, 12 hours of cycling, and 37.4 miles of running).

I biked a little too hard Sunday and ran really hard Monday morning. It took me a few days to recover from those efforts. On Friday, I had a strong 5100 yard swim Friday morning. After 2 hours of downtime, we climbed Mt. Lemmon (25 miles 5200+ feet of vertical climbing). It took me a little over 2.5 hours. The hardest part of the climb was trying to figure out what clothing to wear. One minute super cold in a head wind and the next minute warm with a tailwind. After 17 miles, the temperature dropped below 40. At that point, I put on a vest, arm and leg warmers. It was my longest climb on the bike ever beating my previous by 16 miles.

I met several talented athletes, who were fun to be around. I saw a jackalope (bigger than my dogs, but no horns), an eagle eating a rabbit on a cactus, and a hawk fly into the living room window. It was a good experience. Thanks Mark.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


On Monday I decided to try the crossfit challenge from last week, 7 minutes of burpees (squat down, jump back to plank, push up w/chest and hips touching the ground, jump to hands, jump 6 inches off the ground). My did 82, so my goal was 83. I did 80. I started too conservatively. I did 35 in the first half and 45 in the second.

I got on the trainer Tuesday and had the best workout ever on the trainer. My average watts with warm-up, intervals, and cool down was 20 watts higher and more than double the duration then the race. The workout didn't require too much effort. Craziness!?!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Busy, busy

Time has flown by. I can't beleive it's been 3 weeks since my last post. Nothing too exciting going on in the last few weeks.

I raced my first indoor triathlon yesterday at the downtown Tacoma YMCA. The race was a 15 minute swim, 30 minute trainer ride, and a 2.22 mile run. I felt pretty good on the swim until about 800 meters. My legs started to turn into bricks. It was a 20 meter pool and they only counted down and back, so I finished with 1080 meters. I rested on the wall until the bullhorn sounded. Bike time started immediately. Actual bike time was less than 30 minutes because transition was included. I don't know what kind of trainers they were using, but I do know they were not accurate. It told me I averaged 19.9mph for the entire ride. I generated less power on Ironman races and went faster. Once time was called, I quickly transitioned to my running shoes and headed out the door. The run was flat for the first 400 meters, turned left and went up a solid 6%+ grade, left for 400m onto a slight downhill, left sharp downhill for 50 meters, left for 400m slightly up, right sharp downhill for 50m, then back to the start to loop around and repeat. I heard foot steps behind me in the first 100 meters. They slowly faded away once I took the first uphill. I settled into a good pace and continued to pull away from my chasers.

I ended up 5th with the fastest run split.

Monday, February 6, 2012

bull riding and a coyote

I biked a little, swam a little more, and ran even more. The sun came out Wednesday afternoon and stuck around for the week. I rode a mechanical bull for the first time. I cannot imagine riding a real bull. I don't know how long I stayed on, but it seemed like an eternity. I definitely would recommend wearing gloves.

I wasn't sure if Kona wanted to run yesterday afternoon. I let her run off leash earlier than normal, until I saw a coyote 100 meters ahead. I put Kona back on leash. I started running in that direction. The coyote ran into the woods when I was within 25 meters. He wasn't very skinny, so I assumed he has been eating well. I looked back as we passed the area and nothing in sight. I am sure he was watching us. (o--o)

I was rooting for the Patriots in the Superbowl yesterday. It was a close game. There were a couple of good commercials. My favorite was with a Great Dane and Doritos.

Monday, January 30, 2012

water gun

I did not sleep well Wednesday night. It seemed like there was someone standing outside my window with a water gun. UGH!!! After work and a short nap, I got on the trainer for several anaerobic repeats. I felt pretty good. I lost the fan on the last one. The puppy knocked it down and I did not want to stop the workout, so I suffered in sweat.

I had a good workout on the bike Thursday. Lots of short anaerobic intervals with short rest. I lost the fan on the the last one because the puppy knocked the chair down.

Friday morning I felt good in the pool. My pulling speed is slowly starting to come back. I with 3.6k. After work I took the dogs for a short easy run. It was sunny and chilly. I dropped the dogs off and finished up with 15 minutes of plyo. I had to use the rails on the stairs to get back inside.

I swam 2000 meters Saturday morning. It was a short workout with a little intensity sprinkled in. Once I got home, I jumped on the trainer for almost 2 hours. The rest of the day was spent relaxing.

The rain rolled in the wee hours of Sunday morning. My legs were sore from Friday's plyo. I ran early, so I could make it to work on time. I had a few intervals at 10k pace. I finished with almost 11 miles. After work, I swam an easy 2k.

It was a good week.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

snow is almost gone

Monday I jumped in the pool for 3k of swimming. I didn't feel great, but somehow managed to swim faster as the workout progressed. After a work and a short nap, I took the dogs out for an easy 3+ mile run. The roads were mostly dry as most of the snow has melted.

After work Tuesday I took the dogs out for a short 35 minute run. I hoped to stay dry. I ended up getting soaked in the last few minutes. I chilled for a couple hours then hopped on the bike for a 45 minute ride. I did several 1 minute repeats with short rest. My legs were numb at the end.

I swam 3600 meters Wednesday morning. The main set was 3x (4x100 on 1:30 + 100 easy on 2:05). I felt fine cardio-wise. My legs were quite the opposite, heavy like lead weights. I finished up with some pulling and a cool down. After work I took the dogs out for some speed training. Kona did all of the intervals with me. Indy did most of the intervals. Fina may have only done half. She knows where my turn-around points are so she just waits in the distance. No reason to run any further than necessary. Smart dog. I totally lucked out with the weather, partly sunny.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Snow week

Se got several inches of snow last week. My dogs love the snow.

Monday was a holiday in celebration of MLK. I swam 3100 meters. The main set was 5x400 pull on 6:00.

Tuesday I was feeling under the weather so not much of anything.

Wednesday the snow dumped. No work or training. I did take the dogs for a 4.5+ mile hike through Dupont. They had a blast. We did several snow sprints. My toes were not happy with me for the next several days. I guess hiking boots aren't designed for sprints.

Thursday the freezing rain came. This made things slippery and caused all kinds of havoc on trees, power, etc... Smaller trees and bushes were touching the ground from the 1-2" of ice on the branches.I lost cable, but had power. I rode the trainer for 40 minutes. I did several very hard 30" effort. It doesn't matter how much rest you get, these hurt.

Friday I went to the movies to watch Haywire. This had the least amount of talking I have ever heard in an action movie. No training and the 10k was canceled for tomorrow.

Saturday was a big day of training. After breakfast I swam an easy 2000 meters at the pool. I jumped on the bike for a 2 hour ride with a few intervals of Olympic/70.3 efforts. I ate lunch and chilled for a couple hours then went out for an easy run. The side roads were crappy. I had to stick to the main road and do a couple of loops.

Yesterday I went to the pool in the morning and swam 2800 meters. The main set was 2 rounds of 4x200 descending. The second set was pull and I held the same pacing for both sets. I headed out for a long run just before noon. I did a few 5 minute intervals at tempo pace. I had to cut the second one short because a dog came up to us. He broke his leash and wanted to say hi to Kona. Unfortunately ever since Fina was bitten, Kona has no desire to be around unfamiliar dogs. I added another minute to the third interval. The rest of the day was good.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Vizsla fartleks, 72 pull-ups, and snow

I did not feel great in the pool Wednesday morning. I think it was due to poor sleep. The main set was two sets of 5x100s on short rest. I did the first set on 1:30 averaging 1:20.6. The second set was on 1:35 averaging 1:28.8. My arms were useless. I finished with 3.5k.

After work I took the dogs out for a sunny, but chilly run. Fifteen minutes in we started 30 seconds on/off. This was very entertaining. The dogs did want me to beat them. Fina kept looking back at me, "Does this human think he has a chance?" The other dogs laughed. The best part was once I slowed to a jog, so did the dogs. They figured out the workout very quickly. The dogs were wasted after the workout. Once home, they went straight to sleep. I relaxed for 2 hours and then did 45 minutes of p90x, Cardio.

ThursdayI got on the trainer after work and took another stab at the workout from last a week ago. My legs were totalled after the last one. It was hard to stand up. Does this mean I worked hard?

Friday morning I felt okay in the pool. The main set was 12x100 on 1:35 descending every 3 and 3x400 pull 10". I finished with 3.6k in under 58 minutes. After work I took the dogs out for a short easy run, 3.8 miles. Once my brother got home we started p90x. The focus was legs and back. I finished with 72 pull ups and almost sprained my ankle during plyometrics.

Saturday morning I went to the pool for an easy 2000 meters. It took half of the workout for my upper body to loosen up from the pull-ups. After a long 2.5 hour nap, I jumped on the trainer for 105 minutes. I caught up on shows.

I woke up this morning to snow. I took the dogs out for a long run. They had a blast. Kona was out of control.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

made 10 but fell short

Yesterday morning, I swam 2700 meters. The main set was 4x400 pull on 6:05. I felt a little tight from the p90x on Friday. After work I took the dogs for a short run to get them out of the house. I finished up on the track with a fast 100 and 2x200 very fast. I felt strong.

I did not sleep well last night, so I stayed in bed a little longer this morning. I have felt tired all day. After work I took the dogs out for an easy 30 minute run. The sun came out and felt awesome. I chilled for a couple hours before getting on the trainer. Same workout as last week. My goal was to make all 10 this time. I did all 10, but fell a little short of the power goal. Next week I will make them all.

Monday, January 9, 2012

First week of 2012

Monday was the last day of vacation. I ran easy for 25 minutes and did p90x (back and arms). I finished the workout with 42 pull-ups. I also learned a new way to do it, corn row pull  up. You pull yourself up shift your body to the right, left, center, backward, forward, then down. Yea that's only one pull-up.

First day back to work for 2012 was Tuesday. I squeezed 3.2k in the morning. Some fast 25s and descending 400s pull. My lats were sore. They must have grown because I ended up chafing underneath my armpits. Nothing Bodyglide can't fix. After work I jumped on the trainer for a short intense ride with several 1 minute efforts @ greater than VO2 with 30 seconds rest between. My legs were not ready for the shock. I made 5 then spun easy for 5 minutes. I made one more attempt to squeeze in a few more. I finished with only 7. Next time I will get in 10 or more.

I was back at the pool for another 3200 meters of swimming Wednesday. My lats were more sore than Tuesday. The main set was 10x100 on 1:30. Eight was all I had in me. I averaged 1:24s. I will get my speed back in a few weeks. After work, I went to pick up Linkin. I walk into the house and smell poop. He pooped all over his kennel. UGH!!!. I got him cleaned up only to have him poop again in another kennel. After his second bath he slept for almost 2 hours. I wanted to run sooner, but did not want to take the chance of him exploding into another kennel. I went out for a short 35 minute run. I felt good going out until I turned around. It was a nice headwind. I didn't even realize I was running with a tailwind. I threw in several fartlek efforts 30 seconds on and 30 seconds off. I quickly dried the dogs and myself off. My brother was waiting to start p90x. I picked Yoga. I was getting very hungry, so we stopped after 35 minutes. My brother admitted he has a new respect for Yoga.

Thursday, I got on the trainer for another short intense workout. After a short warm-up and two all out 10 second efforts I was into several rounds of 30 seconds very hard + 30 seconds very easy. These things destroy the legs quickly. My goal was to make 10. I missed 2 of them. Next time I will get in 14 or more.

I felt much better in the pool Friday morning. My lats had finally recovered. The main set was 9x100 on 1:35 descend every 3 (1:27-24-20, 1:27-23-19.5, 1:26-23-20). My average speed was better than Wednesday's workout. I finished up with 3.2k. After work, I went out for a short 25 minute easy run. The dogs were excited to get outside. I put in the DVD for p90x (chest, shoulders, triceps, abs). I like the challenge of the workout. I also added 2 plyometric exercises for the legs.

The original forecast for the weekend was partly cloudy. I woke up Saturday morning to wet roads. I got on the trainer for 2 hours of mostly easy riding. I had a few rounds of 5 minutes at Olympic effort with 5 minutes cruise. Sunday was the opposite of Saturday, all sun and no clouds. I had to work, so ran early in the cold for 75 minutes.

It was a good start to the new year!

Sunday, January 1, 2012


It has been nice to do and eat whatever the last several days. 2011 is in the rear and I am looking forward to an awesome 2012!!!