Monday, November 30, 2009

Week 2's Results

I finished the week with 16.5 hours of triathlon practice...I was scheduled for 11.5 hours. The days off for Thanksgiving holiday and the constant urging of my road racing buddies made me break my schedule and do an extended ride Thursday morning. In total I swam four times for 13,200 yards, I rode four times for 126 miles, and I ran 4 times for 24 miles. The high-light of my training was Sunday morning when my daughter joined me for my swim...we did a 300 warm up, 18x100 leaving on the 1:50, and warmed down with another 300. It was cool swimming with her and seeing how much she's improved this year. She kept up for the most part, then blew me away with a 300 breast-stroke warm down...I'm all about freestyle.

I pre-rode the first 26 miles of the IronMan St. George course on the computrainer...wow! Talk about rolling terrain. I counted two specific climbs with 6 percent grades. This course is going to be all about managing the gears, watts, cadence, and bike positioning. It's going to be a challenge!

Friday, November 27, 2009

We Have The Technology...We Can Rebuild Him...

This is my training lab


On the computer screen is my computer interfaced training program (Computrainer). I was really excited to get this to help improve my cycling. After a few tests the stark reality set in...I have a long way to go. This program is totally humbling. Ignorance was bliss...I thought I was good...I'm not. I have a long way to go. I plan to spend nights after work and cold winter weekends trying to make my cycling more efficient...and a little stronger. This program tells me which leg is working better (my right...damn skateboarding!), my pedaling efficiency (100 being perfect and 0 being dead, I scored an 80% on the standard road bike, and just under 70% on my tri bike), and my power output over a given distance/time frame (the verdict is still out on these results).

At any rate, I'm up to the challenge, and hopefully the real-time data will help me get faster.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

IronMan Arizona 2009

I went to IronMan Arizona this weekend to both volunteer and register for next year's event. I got to watch the swim start. Check out the photos:

Age Groupers lining up for the start moments before the gun goes off.


During the National Anthem


And they're off!


This person's alarm must not have went off because they started well after the rest of the other 2500 participants...Ooops!


And on another note, this came in the mail for me when I came back. Guess I have to get serious about training this time.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Big Man -- Shane



This is Shane, our 220 pound English Mastiff. He's 11 years old and the sweetest man you'll ever meet. He may drool a lot or be gassy, but he's truly a gentle giant. A few years ago, my daughter Grace got a black and white bunny for a pet. When we moved into our current house, we let the bunny roam free with Shane. We were a bit nervous that Shane might consume her in one bite. He didn't and was indifferent to her. Over a few months, the bunny grew comfortable with shane. When the cool of winter hit, we'd wake up to find the bunny nestled in between Shane's legs. They kindled a little relationship together. Here's a couple of pictures of the two last spring:




Things stayed the same for the rest of the winter and all spring. We'd wake up every morning and see the two snuggling together. Then in the summer, someone gave us another bunny. The two bunnies hit it off together and ignored Shane altogether. Shane didn't seem to mind...all he really ever does is sleep anyway. Lazy dog!

Now that it's winter time and the cold has been really affecting Shane's hip joints, I've been having Shane sleep inside. And, every night as I turn the lights off, there's the bunny waiting by the door for Shane to snuggle...poor little lonesome bunny. I think she really takes it personal because she hardly spends any time with Shane anymore. Here's picture of the two:

Monday, November 16, 2009

Self Humiliation Via Yoga.

One of the quickest ways to humiliate myself is to go to a yoga class. I hate yoga! But, it’s one of those necessary evils because it helps me stretch…it’s a preventative maintenance thing. If I let myself to go too long without doing it, I generally pull something. So, I force myself to go once a week. It’s hard, uncomfortable, and humiliating…especially when the class does balance poses. My balance has gone out the window over these last years. I’m the idiot dancing around in the back trying to stand on one leg as everyone seems to be comfortably perched in eagle pose. That’s OK…it’s a small price to pay to keep myself out of the hurt locker.

This morning kicked off the beginning of my 24-week training phase for IronMan St. George. My coach has given me all my workouts until May 1; now it’s up to me to deliver. This morning I swam 3,550 yards at Masters. That was my first workout.

I’m off to Arizona this weekend to volunteer for IronMan Arizona and guarantee myself registration for next year. The event usually sells out before it even goes online, so got to physically be in line to registration. And, preference is given to the event volunteers. Once that is in place, my diabolical 3 full Ironman year will be queued up and ready to usher in my 40th birthday.

This weekend I took the kids to the BYU/UNM game. BYU won. It was a very unexciting game other than the UNM kicker missed three kicks in a row hitting the up-right each time. That’s got to be a record of some kind. Ethan enjoyed the game. Elise and Grace were cold and couldn’t get enough hot cocoa.


I spent the rest of the weekend getting things done for winter, so I can focus on my training. We raked up fifteen 50 gallon bags of leaves, and we’re still not half-way done. There are still a lot of leaves left to fall. For living in the desert our house seems to be rather deciduous. It snowed again Saturday night. I’m thinking this time, it’ll stay cold and the last intervals of warm weather are finally gone. Oh well, that’s winter.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Just Before...

This weekend I spent a bunch of time getting the house ready for winter. We have some mature mulberry trees the shed lots and lots of leaves, so I had to clean the rain gutters and bag raked leaves. I thought I was really clever by raking the leaves on to the lawn and using the mower to compact and bag the leaves. But, turns out using the lawn mower kicked up just enough dust to give me touch of allergies. Needless to say, I’ve been wiped out these last couple of days with typical allergy issues.

On a brighter note, my work on my running form has really helped a lot so far. I’ve ran three consecutive days at about 45 minutes each time and I’m not really sore. That would not have been possible had I still been using the heel strike running stride I had been using previously. I’d always scratch my head in awe when I’d read about people running consecutively for 100 days; that was never possible for me because I’d get too sore after consecutive runs and sooner or later develop some injury. Now, I think that’s a real possibility for me….knock on wood.

Starting next week, I’m 6 months or 24 weeks out from IronMan St. George. I start my training in earnest starting Monday. I’ll spend the next 12 weeks building my base then the following 12 weeks training specificity. So, soon I’ll take that plunge again into a world of fatigue and exhaustion that I’ve grown so accustomed to over the last years of my life. But, I do love it though.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Just A Little Gift!

Incompatibility

After a few weeks of lifting weights and trying to rebuild my running stride, I'm firmly convinced the two activities are incompatible. My whole body is so sore right now. Lunges just kill me. I ran last night for an hour and the soreness really messed with my mind. As I ran, I'm constantly assessing if something hurts or is uncomfortable...last night everything hurt and was uncomfortable so I kept worrying that I was doing something wrong.

This morning I swam and was so slow because I was sore. Weights aren't conducive to maintaining one's self-esteem.

So, here's a photo of my office...notice anything funny?



REDBULL! That's how I drag my butt to work after the early morning swims. My admin has tried to get me to get rid of the cans because they're "unprofessional". We'll I don't care! It smacks of a college fraternity's decorative touch...and that's what I like.

Here's another photo from my run in the hills the other day.



This is probably at 6500 feet above sea level.

Finally, here's Mia (the youngest) waking up in our bed. It drives me nuts because she doesn't make sleeping comfortable. If I didn't love her so, I'd throw her outside with Shane and his bunnies!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Off Season

Every year for the past 10 years, it's been "off season" and I try to regroup and figure out what I'm going to work on for the next racing season. It always boils down to 1) improve my diet, 2) train harder, and 3) train smarter. Well this year, I'm not going to kid myself anymore...I like to eat, I eat fairly well, I train hard...training smarter seems to be a case of trial and error. So, this year I'm going to do more of the same. I'm adding a few more tools (i.e. computrainer and a power meter), but I think I'll just continue training as I've done this last year...maybe with few less injuries though.

On another note, I've been having fun with my swimsuits during swim team. These are the swim suits I rotate through during the week.








My Personal Favorite.

It brings a bit of comedy at 5AM.