Saturday, January 29, 2011

Fastest Way to Lose Unwanted Pounds

Yes, there was a lapse since my last update...that's because I stumbled across a really fast way to lose poisening! Yay!

Week 3 was chaotic with 73 hours at the office...don't worry though, I was still able to squeeze nearly 17 hours of triathlon practice, which consisted of 5 runs, 4 swims, 4 bike rides.

Monday was going to be a doozy at work. We had a big project/presentation that needed to be done first thing Tuesday morning. So, I knew from the moment I walked into the office it was going to be "game on" until that project done...even if we had to work through the night. I decided not to swim before work, so I didn't roll into the office knackered. It was, indeed, hectic. We worked through lunch, through the afternoon and into the early evening. We decided to order dinner and work through dinner. It was on the company's dime, so I ordered the blue cheese burger (~$12 burger). Within 30 minutes of finishing my burger, my stomach began to let me know it didn't enjoy the blue cheese burger despite the hefty price tag. We finally finished our project at midnight...not before I had to make some mad donkey dashes to the restroom. I went home, fell into bed, and crossed my fingers that everything would sort itself out by morning. At 2am, I relocated my sleeping position to the base of the toilet...not move until noon the following day...with the exception of vomiting intervals....TMI?
By the following evening, I was able to take in fluids again. The next day I went to work and decided not to workout. By noon, I was taking in solids. That evening I did a light spin on the trainer. All seemed to be well within 24 hours of ingesting the blue cheese burger. 48 hours after getting sick, I weighed myself and was 8 pounds lighter. Now I'm trying to figure out how to keep it off...suggestions?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Week 2

This was my view during my Sunday ride. Just me, the wind and the buffalos.

The second week of this year is done and I closed it out with 18.5 hours of triathlon practice. I was able to log 4 swims (13,550 yards), 6 bike rides (165 miles), 4 runs (20 miles) and 2 strength sessions. The numbers are a bit soft, but it's still really early. I'm just glad to be back in the swing of things. After 9 rides in the new bike position, it's starting to feel much more comfortable. I actually rode outside Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, I climbed Tramway for the first time in 2011. Tramway is a ~7 mile climb that averages 5%; it's on the north east part of town. I've climbed it, literally, hundreds of times, and it seems almost all rides in Albuquerque end with a climb up Tramway. So, you learn to get used to it. So Saturday I opened my Tramway account, and Sunday I did it three more times doing big gear work. The photo above is from the Tramway climb.

I weigh myself at the beginning of each week, and this week I trimmed off 3 pounds. I can honestly say that's all from training because I ate really poorly. My Coke and chocolate consumption this week was through the roof. There's a positive linear relationship with my work schedule and my chocolate and Coke consumption. These are my two vices. But in the words of Oscar Wilde, "I can resist anything but temptation".

This is a photo I snapped the other morning. I don't know if you've seen these; it's a credit card enabled air pump...the kind you use at gas stations.

This is a fair representation of our economic state of affairs. Businesses are trying to squeeze every last penny out of its customers for every marginal, incremental good or service; and in so doing, they're killing their businesses. What happened to the good 'ol fasion gas service station where the air was free? What about when restaurants charge for refills? I went to McCormick and Schmick and got a Coke with my dinner. I asked for a second, and a third, and so on and so fourth. When I got the bill, they charged me $2 for each refill. That was years ago, and I've never gone back. And, I'll never go back! What about the airline industry charging for baggage? Flying a family of 6 to any destination is an expensive proposition...try paying an additional $600 for luggage. The decision to charge for luggage is so detestable to me, it's completely modified my choice of flying...if it's not Southwest, it's the car. I hope every airline goes out of business and Southwest rules the skies forever! And, finally, have you ever looked through the charges after visiting the doctor? What about the cost of a surgery? It's staggering. If you had to pay out of pocket for your medical bills, the life expectancy in America would drop like the ball on Times Square.

Sorry this is my rant...I'll limit my biases going forward.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Week 1 Finished

Elise Swimming at My Pool: the Academy Natatorium

I spent the weekend with my oldest daughter at her first swim meet of 2011. It was short course yards (SCY), and her first SCY meet in nearly a year. We were excited to see how she would fair. She's been swimming on a year-round team (Duke City Acquatics) for nearly two years now. She's really starting learn her strokes and get some speed now. What was more exciting was it was being held at the pool my Masters Team meets: The Academy Natatorium. On Saturday, she swam the following: 50yrd backstroke, 100 yard freestyle, 50yrd butterfly, 100 yrd breaststroke, and the 200yrd IM. Of these events, she was able knock off 3-5 seconds and move up 3-4 heats. On Sunday, she swam 200yrd freestyle, 50yrd breaststroke, 50yrd freestyle, and 100yrd IM. What's crazy is her recorded 200 free time was 3:19.56. Today she swam 2:38.11...That's more than a 40 second improvement. That's huge! Her next swim meet is the first week of February in Los Alamos...hopefully she can get nuclear and qualify for the state SCY championships at the end of February.

As for my training, it was an abreviated week because I was on the road all day Monday coming home from Boulder. It was a crazy work week, and I spent Saturday morning and Sunday morning at Elise's swim meet.

That being said, I had 11 hours of training, which consisted of 2 swims, 4 runs, 3 bike rides, and 1 weight lifting session. An ideal week of training would be 4-5 swims, 4-5 runs, and 5 bikes with 2 weight lifting sessions. I knew this week was going to be tough to squeeze in much volume primarily because of work and family related time constraints. My primary focus on the bike is to learn to get comfortable with the new position. Otherwise, I'm really trying to find my speed, which I lost training for iron distance events.

One really tough workout I just finished was a brick. A brick is a double workout (i.e. bike/swim or swim/bike) strung together as one workout. I like to do at least one brick a week, which are generally done Thursday nights in my Speed Lab (future blog entry). Todays brick was the last twenty miles of the Buffalo Springs Half Ironman course on the computrainer immediately followed by a 1:15 tempo run. I was able to hold 22 mph on the Buffalo Springs course and finished just under 1 hour. I immediatly got off my bike and changed into my running clothes and went outside and ran. From my house, I have a running loop that if I start east has lots of climbing. The other way has lots of downhill. I went east into the hills. My legs felt really good and I held my pace under 8 min/mile. I was able to run 9 miles in 1:15. Total elevation gain was just under 1000 feet.

I'm hoping next week the volume will be up again...fingers crossed. We'll it's time for me to go and make the family Sunday traditional dinner: meat loaf and gnocci.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Week 1, 2011 Coming to a Close

It's the first week of 2011 and I'm still trying to get my bearings in terms of training and racing plans. I'm sort of going through the training motions at the moment until I get a free moment to really plan things out. I have a tentative schedule of events...but nothing set in stone. I really would like to do 4-5 half ironmans this year and ultimately qualify for the 70.3 world championships in Las Vegas. At a high level, that's all I got. I'm sort of going through an identity crisis because I spent the latter part of 2009 and all of 2010 in full iron distance training mode, which, oddly, I really like. However, I'm not signed up for any iron distance races in 2010 and it's killing me. I keep looking at other non-Iron Man (WCS) iron distance races and wondering if I should just roll with my 2010 training level and continue. I've looked at the Rev3 Sandusky, Ohio event on Sept. 11. I've looked at the full-distance Vineman in Sonoma, Ca in July. There's also the Redman full in Oklahoma City in September. The only reservation I have about these events are they wouldn't be Kona qualifyers. The only Ironman events still open are St. George and Louisville, KY. I've done St. George and am not sure that's the best course for me. I hear lots of bad things about it's a real travel challenge. Arg! Why can't this be like bike racing or a foot race where I can sign up the morning of...and they're local?!?

On another note, I rode the new bike for the first time, and the fitter was's going to take a little time to adapt to the new position. It seems like I have to use more strength in my arms and shoulders to support myself. I'm confident, though, that I'll adapt given time and stick-to-it-ness.

One thing I'm finding about tri training relative to other endurance sports, is it's a very solitary training sport. At least it seems that way for me. The most social training I do is swimming. I generally ride alone because my workouts are very structured and I have the obvious time constraints as any other human does. I run alone too because I like to maintain a targeted pace. I do run with a co-worker, but our schedules often conflict. I try to run with my dog, but she's still a bit young to do really long runs...and, I do most of my running at lunch break at work. With swimming, I swim on a masters team, and our lane is very social. Sometimes we're too social and we don't get the entire swim in. However, as I get close to an event I try to swim alone and do longer sets.

Bike racing is very social. There's group rides to talk about who's doing what. There's teams and clubs that hang out and train together. There a high schoolesque social mentality as well.

I'm just I'll end now. I'll post week one's results soon.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

2011 and Guess Who's Back!

2010 is in the books, and guess what I made as one of my new years resolutions?...yep...updating my journey to Kona, which, incidentally still goes on. I'm not going to lament that I pretty much ignored this blog all last year. Instead, I'm going to move forward.

Here's a quick recap of 2010(not necessarily in chronological order):

-Finished Ironman St. George (my second)

-Purchased our new home (just one month before St. George...not a good idea!

-Got a new computer after destroying my other one while moving...including my special indulgance--Bose Speakers

-Bailed on doing Ironman have to be a bit mad to try 3 ironmans in 1 year

-Turned 40...wasn't as bad as I thought it would be

-Got a smoker and smoked lots of ribs, salmon, a turkey, and some prime rib...lots of things still to smoke though

-Rode my bike >10,000 miles (98% on my TT bike)

-Ran 1,100 miles

-Swam 473,044 yards

-Finished Ironman Arizon (third Ironman) in 10:20...20 minutes and 6 spots out of qualifying from Kona

-Destroyed my TT bike on the way to Ironman Az

-Took the kids to the beach and Disneyland (a couple of days after IMAZ...wonderful way to recover)

-Bought my new super-duper TT bike.

It was a very eventful year though I only did 3 races...2 ironman distance races and 1 olympic. This year's focus is going to be qualifying for Ironman 70.3 world championships in Las Vegas. It's a bit of detour from trying to qualify for Kona, but it'll improve my speed and give me some time to refresh for 2012. In 2012 I'm thinking of going after 2 more full iron distance events...Lake Placid and one other yet to be decided event.

Currently I'm on a bit of a forced break. After my TT bike got destroyed, I spent some time riding my road bike. I rode a bit too hard, too early and started to develop some IT band issues. I'm about to try to run again (after being off for a week) in a few minutes. Wish me luck.

During the "off-season" I like to spend some time making slight adjustments and trying to find the "Low hanging fruit" that can provide some improvements for the up coming year. Well, I spent last weekend in Boulder getting a bike fit at Retul. See Pictures:

I chose this fitter because he's worked with Lance, Levi, Craig Alexander, Tim O'Donell, and quite a few other heavy hitters. It's a bit difficult going to a bike fit with a whole new, unridden bike and try to improve your position without a referrence point to begin with. My prior bike was destroyed on I-40 near Holbroke, AZ, and it wasn't really possible to duplicate the position. So, this was a ground zero project. It took nearly three hours, and the resultant position will take some adaptation. I'm hopeful that it will yield some speed/time gains both on the bike and the run.

I still have a few other tricks up my sleeve for next year to squeeze every ounce of speed out of this little ol' squaty body of mine.

Here's a closing picture of my sweet little Lilly who's my running partner: