Monday, December 31, 2007

It’s on!

Today marks the first day of my official training plan. Like I mentioned before, I decided to go with the Triathlon Geek training plan. I mentioned before that it looks good and breaks it down into different levels. Originally I had planned on extending the 14 week to 16 weeks by adding a few weeks to the Adaptation and Aerobic phase, but there has been a slight change of plans…

My Honey has decided that she wants to do the IronGirl triathlon! *

This is exactly two weeks before the Rage in the Sage, so the new plan is to follow the plan completely then redo a week of competitive. This way, the one plan will work for both of us.

The plan for this week is:

Monday – Run – 45 mins
Tuesday (Hung Over) – Weights
Wednesday – Swim – 500 yards
Thursday – Bike – 50 mins
Friday – Weights
Saturday – Swim – 500 yards
Sunday – Run – Drills – 3 miles

Let’s see how we do! Wish us luck!

*"Wants to" may be a strong choice of words, I was going to go with "would rather suffer through an Irongirl than suffer through the Rage. Plus the IronGirl has a smaller swim", but I didn't think it rolled off the tongue so easily.

Kick in the Pants!

It’s a little old but it needs to be talked about. The past weekend, we went out for a leettle bike ride. By leettle, I mean 30 freaking miles!! And by “we”, I mean the one and only… JohnnyTri!

JT e-mailed me a little while back and mentioned that he wanted to go for an easy bike ride. Like a dumba$$, I jumped at the chance. Nevermind the fact that I have never done 30 miles before. Nevermind the fact that JT is training for IM-CDA and Rage(Half) and Half-Ironman Switzerland; nevermind the fact that he has calf muscles the size of my head and is built like a Greek god (Women swoon at the mere mention of his name!).

No! Despite all these overwhelming facts, I decided to ride.

Now this could have been a perfect ride. He wanted to stay easy, L1 and L2. RIGHT! Leave it to me to F@ck that up in no time flat.

Apparently, JT thought I knew what I was doing when he let me plan the bike route.

Unwittingly, I chose the bike path next to my house. It’s a great path completely isolated from traffic with 6 foot wide path. Normally the Mrs. and I ride it every week. we ride half of it every week…appearently the easier, flatter, less likely to cause cardiac failure side.

The other side is the not easy, not flat, very likely to cause cardiac failure. Imagine my chagrin, when I take JT out there on a route “I do all the time” only to find that HOLY MOTHER OF GOD…WHO PUT THIS HILL HERE?

Needless to say it was GREAT! The first 15 miles were some of the hardest miles of my life. We reached grades of 10+. I think there was one the almost reached 15, trusty Garmin says 22% but I think Garmin was smokin’ something at the time.

The first 15 made the second 15 all the better as it mellowed out to good smooth climbs but added the exhaustion of having the life sucked out of your bone marrow. GOOD TIMES!

All in all, it was really good. I hung with JT (who slowed down to a crawl a few times to wait for me, thank you very much!).

Final time for this jaunt out into the hills was 2:13:39. That makes for a whopping…..13.4 mph!

Look out Tour de Farce! I’m only one sponsor away. (Miller?; Budwieser?; Corona?; Absolute?)

I would like to thank Johnny for slowing down for me. I think that he woulda/coulda/ (probably) shoulda been about 6 miles ahead of me at any given moment and therefore would have a much more impressive mph.

I’d also like to thank my lovely wife, who in a moment of weakness let me talk her into a ride and went with me the DAY BEFORE the 30 mile ride to “test the legs”. Apparently 13 miles and 10% grade does not make a fresh pair of legs!

And finally I’d like to thank the little people. Not for any reason other than I’ve always wanted to thank them. You know who you are! (Good. Cause I don’t)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Screw Triathlons, I’ve got a whole new goal!

I’ve been wondering around looking for a meaning to my life. I mean really, is my life only to serve as an example for others not to follow??!!

Finally, I have found my life purpose:

Breaking News!

The Beer Mile world record was broken yesterday with a time of 5:09 by Jim Finlayson. The Beer Mile was held Tuesday night on the Oak Bay track in Victoria, B.C. His beer choice was Granville Island Winter Ale, from a bottle.

For those that aren’t aware of the rules, the basic idea is this: Each competitor drinks four regular bottles or cans of beer of at least 5% alcohol and runs four laps on a track (Start - beer/lap, beer/lap, beer/lap, beer/lap - finish).

This may be might life’s purpose but I seriously have my work cut out for me. This guys drank 4 beers and ran a mile in 5:09!!

My hero!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007!

Today was one of those days were you look around and go whose body is this??!!

Now, I have that sometimes. Usually it’s because I am sucking so much ass that I can’t believe it. But today was one of those days on the opposite end of the spectrum.

I was hauling some serious butt out there today!

The whole run (3 miles) felt very easy and slow for me. I was thinking that the cold (relatively) would get to me, but that was no problem. I was thinking that the swimming workout I did the night before would get me, no problem-o. If nothing else, I figured the fact that I was a dumbass and didn’t go to bed until 1 am and 4 hours of sleep would do it. But it turns out that everything lined up for me and I was Billy Bad Ass out there.

Maybe it’s a sign. Maybe I should always stay up to late, work too hard and be a general dumbass! This might be a whole new leaf for me. I could break new records, write books on how to be a dumbass and beat the system. I could be a MILLIONARE (then I could REALLY be a dumbass).

Me thinks not. Fluke, I say. But we’ll see.

In the meantime, I just hope that the group doesn’t start expecting that kind of performance out of me all the time. They’ll be in for a rude awakening!

Training Plan

In preparation for the upcoming year, I decided to go off the deep end and get a training plan (or two).

I actually wanted a coach, but 1). Don’t think I deserve one [I’m waiting to get a coach for when I’m actually close to winning something, right now I’m BOTP, maybe when I get to MOTP], and 2). Most importantly, I can’t afford one.

I think that it sucks about the money. I know a great guy and great coach (I assume) but right now, I don’t think I can afford him, the Gym, the house, etc all at once. Which sucks, because I’m pretty sure that I can con beg my way into a good deal if I include the family.

Anyways, I bought the Triathlon Geek Olympic training plan. I’ll let you know if it works well for me or not. At first blush, it looks good, a lot of work outs at various levels and it focuses on different styles and techniques.

I plan on using the Olympic plan for the Sprint race, and I’ll use the Half-Iron plan for the Olympic (coming up!!). My hope is that I’ll be so far ahead with the larger distances that it’ll be cake walk for me to do the actual event.

(Here’s to hoping!)

I have one problem. I currently go to the gym and do a couple classes (Both on the same day 6am and 6pm)

1). Run class – Basically a running group. We run ~3 miles. Twice per week; ~40 minutes

2). Sports conditioning – Mainly consist of a lot of various activities; i.e. sprints; push-ups; stairs; core work, etc. Basically it REALLY gets the heart moving (HR 158-193). Twice per week; 1 hour

I really like the classes, but when looking at the new schedule, I’m not sure how they fit in. If I keep them AND follow the schedule, is that too much and/or I’m sure that they may fit into the schedule at first but inevitably the time will come that the schedule calls for more than the class can give.

It’s a pickle, no doubt about it!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Just Push the button!

Crap! What have I done!

I know for you big time endurance athletes out there this is nothing, but for me…OH CRAP!

I have officially registered for an Olympic!

Apparently, I fell for that old trick: “Hurry, hurry HURRY! Don’t miss out, the time is right! We’re SOLD OUT, (but there may be room for just one or two more), HURRY!”

I contacted the RD and he said there were a few spots still open. But I should hurry before they’re gone. Guess what I did? That’s right, no time to think, no time to reconsider and no time to double check the bank account: I spent my hard earned cash-olla on an event.

To hell with the power bill! I don’t need electricity, I need to train. Hell, since this is my first Oly and I’m so drastically underprepared, you could hook a generator to the bike with how much I’m going to need to train to get ready.


(OK, I’m off to throw-up now!)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

2008 Schedule

So here it is. My 2008 race schedule:

[sorry, Blogger editor doesn't do tables very well so it's in picture format :( ]

As my wife puts it: "it’s...ambitious."

Maybe that because I’m looking at doing 17 events

Tri – 7
Bike – 4
Run – 3
Fun – 3

Break down:

The Rage is the third year I’ll be doing this. The first time I didn’t have a clue and came in with three weeks training, sporting a big, heavy mountain bike (suck!); the next year, we (my wife and I) did the Duathlon, again with little training (although I think it was almost a month’s worth this time); For this year, I want to be as prepped as possible. I’ll give it one good go and really find out how badly I suck at this Tri thing.

SG Tri, Utah and Kokopelli are all a series of tri’s that you get to compete against your time. Depending on how I do on the Sprint Rage, I’ll be trying this out in Olympic. This will be my first time. I figure with three of them, I can truly judge how I’m progressing.

UPDATE: Holy Crap Batman! SG Tri is already sold out. I’ve asked to be on the waitlist but DAMN! That was fast!

I did the Pumpkin man last year and have to say that it was F@cking impossibly hard! It has some of the steepest hills I’ve ever ridden (ha! Like I ride a lot of hills in the first place!) But regardless, it was tough. I’ve got to go back, if for nothing else than find my self-respect, which I’m sure I lost somewhere on this trail.

The rest of the events are fun events or biking events to push my biking skills up. Throw in a few long runs and you’ve got a jam packed year!

Wish me Luck (I’m going to need it)!

To bike or not to bike…

When I started looking into Tri-s, I thought that this would be perfect! With a Tri, you get to do three different sports, all of which I suck at.

My original plan was to focus on one event each year.

First year – Run
Second year – Bike
Third year – Swim
Fourth year – Tri

This would enable me to get my skill level to a competent level in each discipline before I tackled the big beast that is Triathlon. But I quickly realized the flaw in this plan.

I’m no spring chicken and I’m getting older every day.

By the time the Tri year rolls around, I’ll be in Depends and most likely will have forgotten everything I learned (Alzheimer's, you know).

So I’ve revised my plan to still focus on each discipline but include Tri throughout the year. This will keep the skills new and fresh while showing me what I need to work on.

2008 will be my ‘Bike’ year.

I’ll be looking for more bike events to do throughout the year and I’ll be looking to take more bike trips each week.

My initial plan is to start with a low mileage, determine that I can actually ‘do’ the mileage, and then slowly attempt to get faster at getting to that same mileage. On the last week of the month, I’ll drop back the speed and take it easy.

Looks something like this (in theory):

Week 1: Determine distance and duration
Week2: Decrease duration while holding distance(GO FASTER!)
Week3: Further decrease duration (Go REALLY fast!)
Week 4: Easy Stroll at same distance.

Hopefully, with this plan, I can give my body the workout it needs while still allowing it to rest enough not to blow some kind of gasket.

I figure I’ll start with 25 miles on January and increase by 10 miles per month. So come September, I’ll be up to 100 mile (105). If I can keep it up past this, December I’ll be at 135. Now the problem here is the cold and the distance/time required. Mind you cold here is not that cold, but I’m sure it will be for me. I’ve got thin blood living here! 50 is COLD!

So that’s my plan.

Gradually increase mileage each month, while finding more riding events throughout the year as well as, throughout the year finding some Tri’s to do.

At this rate, I’ll have to join a riding group (gulp!).

Saturday Recovery Run

This is our first long run since the half-mary last week.

5.6 miles - 1:05:11 – 11:38mi/hr – 154 avg.HR

This actually wasn’t too bad and we even got a pretty good clip coming UP the hill. Definitely felt the recovery though.

The run wasn’t nearly as bad as it was on Wednesday, when we ran with our group for ~3 miles. That day it felt like running was a major effort and we ended up power walking the whole time.

Actually it wasn’t so bad, considering that I’ve never ‘power walked’ before. My experience with it was rather lacking. Power walking just didn’t seem to have the same feel as running (duh!). I mean, it didn’t feel like I was burning any calories or pushing my body at all.

I will say that during the Marathon, I was passed by a group (3 people) of power walkers. They just sashayed their way right past me and left me in their dust. They were all older people, probably 50+, but I couldn’t keep up with them.

Makes me wonder about learning power walking as a skill. I would think that ideally I would learn how to run at a good speed and then when I need a ‘walk’ break, I could jump into power walking mode. That would be great. I’m sure it would cut down on my rest time.

If only they didn’t look so silly when they power walk!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Whole lotta shakkin goin’ on!

I think it’s obligatory to say something corny and Elivis-ish when talking about the race. Just look here and here, of course it helps if you actually are Elvis like this.

The original idea was to do the Santa Run on Dec 1 then the Marathon on Dec 2, but plans fell through as I was still feeling a little down from the cold and was a little nervous about running and then running and how the body would take it. So at the last minute, I decided to leave the Santa to others.

Me and the Missus got up nice and early and slowly made our way down to the Mandalay bay. We meet up with a few people from my work that I conned; begged and bribed to do the Half with me (actually these people are awesome! They have never done any event let alone a half marathon, yet with two months of training and constant encouragement, here they are and they did GREAT. They successfully walked the entire thing in just over 4 hours. These guys are inspiring. To all those people who think that a marathon is impossible, these guys show you just what you can do if you put your mind to it. Congrats to them).

We took a group picture or two and meandered down to the race. We got there right before the race started and was able to watch the sun coming over the mountains. Take a look at this pic, isn’t the Vegas backdrop gorgeous?

Once the gun went off, we (the entire 17,000) started moving forward. About 11 minutes later we were finally at the start line! And Bang! We were off like a rocket! Well, not really, but we were off, all without saying goodbye to the group (who would be walking). GOOD – BYE!

First couple miles were done before we knew it and we were ahead of our normal pace. Unfortunately our heart rate was ahead too.

I think that we passed the blue man group right around mile 4-5 and decided to stop for some water breaks.

Man! Those volunteers have an unsung job. Nothing like handing water off to a bunch of runners who have two brain cells working and inevitably spill water all over the place. Then there’s nothing like cleaning up all those cups of half drank water up off the road.


Right at mile 4.75, I remember that I had last year’s course on my watch (from Garmin website). I had meant to run against it at the start but forgot. Now seemed like a good time.

Warning! If you think that you should “do” a course midway through your run…DON’T!! Because when you do, it will terminate the run you are already on and make a new one for you! Nice!

Now I’m trying to do the mental math of trying to remember my previous time and then add the new time to get the total time and the same for distance. Have you ever seen me do math?? It’s not a pretty sight!

Every time my honey asked how long until the mile is done, I screw my face up, a small vein would pop up on my forehead, a few seconds later, the vein would grow, turn purple. Just about when my head would explode, I would figure out the answer…only to realize that we just passed the mile marker. Uugghh!

Surprisingly, the entire race wasn’t that bad. The Elvi were fun; the run through wedding chapel was great, the people pushing strollers with TWO babies in it AND passing me always blew my mind.

I think that the best was when several Elvi decided to stop into 7-11 to grab an eighteen pack of Milwaukee’s best. Sadly, I was envious.

Miles 10 and 11 were the hardest for us. Probably because on our long runs prior to this, we had only gotten to 10 miles, following the training philosophy, that if you can do 10, you can do 13.

That’s a stupid philosophy!

It may be true, but it’s stupid. The body doesn’t like doing more than it’s been trained to do. The last 3 were not happy. Next time, go over the distance, say 15-16.

We finished the race in 2:42:42. Which is good. Not too fast; not too slow. It beats my previous Half by 6 minutes! So I’m happy with my performance. I’m REALLY happy with my honey’s performance!

This was her first Half and she came through with flying colors. No injuries, no complaints, no tears and no worries. In truth, she was in better shape than I was. My IT band was acting up something fierce (on my good leg nonetheless!). I can’t say enough how proud I am of her.

She’s already talking about next time!

Afterwards, we waited around until the rest of the group came through and then we all got some race swag and grub and headed home.

Well, they did. We went to Macaroni Grill and had a beer or two with the family, then went home.

Sometime about 3pm, my IT band declared it was staging a revolt and woke me out a very deep sleep. After appeasing the revolution with loads of ice, we went for a small walk to flush the legs and then went out again for some late night dinner.

All told I burned about 1800 calories! This morning I woke …. 5 pounds heavier! WOOHOO! I hate my body! I’m going to assume that it is the water retention, either that or the 10 beers and the ice cream zookie I had. (Maybe I should hate me instead of my body! You think?)

With the last race of the year done, I’m already looking at next year’s schedule. I’ll keep you posted.

OH! Here are the splits

Mile 1 – 11:40 – 158hr
Mile2 – 11:32 – 164hr
Mile 3 – 11:56 – 164hr
Mile 4 – 11:51 – 163hr
Mile 5 – Screwed up the log
Mile 6 – 11:52 – 154hr
Mile 7 – 11:59 – 161hr
Mile 8 – 12:13 – 161hr
Mile 9 – 13:36 – 156hr
Mile 10 – 13:00 – 160hr
Mile 11 – 13:19 – 155hr
Mile 12 – 12:11 – 162hr
Mile 13 – 12:23 – 168hr

Total time: 2:42:42 Pace 12:24.6

Here are some more pictures for you to enjoy:

Friday, November 30, 2007

And Now a word from our sponsors...

Unwittingly, I asked my wife what I should write about for the blog and coming up with a blank, I asked her write something for me. Without further ado....

Ladies and Gentleman, I bring wife!

(isn't she a Hottie!!??)

Ok, here it goes…

This is coming to you from the better? Or worse? half of formula-ic (definitely the lazier, not a good writer half) – his wife. I wanted to share a little about Izaac from my point of view…

Let’s start off with his blogger name. Izaac came up with this because of what the word formulaic means. Adjective: being of no special quality or type. Average. Mediocre. Unexceptional. It’s his way of teasing himself about how much he thinks he sucks at triathlons.

First off, anyone that can do a triathlon does not suck! Even if you’re last, you have accomplished so much more than most people will ever do.

He also fails to tell you that for every event (I think) that he has done so far, he has decided close to the last minute to participate, therefore, he had very little training time. Something he should probably work on :-D

He also trains with me (remember the lazy one). I absolutely love our time together running & biking (as he drags me out of the house kicking & screaming) but I have recently come to terms with the fact, I might just be holding him back.

So maybe it’s time for formula-ic to show himself what he is capable of, and for me to either kick it up a notch (doubtful) or learn to enjoy my own company. (Not this weekend though, I still need him to get me through the Las Vegas Marathon).

Here’s to Izaac and all the rest of you triathletes who are not average, mediocre or unexceptional


Disregarding all the nice stuff she said about me...what do you think??

I think that we have another blogger on our hands! And a pretty good writer of one at that. Add to the fact that she's gorgeous and we have a WINNER! (Sorry fellas [and ladies], she's taken).

Little did you know but she's also an aspiring triathlete (hmm...that may be something she doesn't know either, but it doesn't mean its not true!).

She trains just as much as I do and I don't think it will be too long before she is a threat! Look out ladies!

She'll be making her marathon debut at the Las Vegas marathon, which according to my widget is only 1day and 12 hours away!!!

Hopefully, following that she'll be making her Tri debut at the Rage-in-the-Sage (she's already done the Du there before).

And finally, this may have been her debut for Blogs!

Damn! That's a pretty good year!

Sickness has become SICKNESS

I’ve been fighting it for a week now. I’ve been denying it for even longer, but I think that it’s time to admit it.

I’m sick!

I’ve got a cold or a runny nose or whatever else you call it. Point is: I feel like $h1t!

Perfect timing too. Right before the Las Vegas Marathon!


My 'taper' week has become 'sloth' week. I haven’t done an official training all week.

I’m sure (or at least I’m praying) that it’s just the cold but with every cough and sneeze, I feel a little more of my muscles getting weaker. Cough! There goes my legs! Cough! There goes my breathing! It has to stop before I become a wet noodle on the floor unable to walk to the door let alone run a half!

I’m freaking out!

To better compound the issue, I’ve decided to sneak in a few exercises to help the body "remember who is the boss".

A quick 3 mile jaunt around the University before my friends’ dinner party seemed like just the ticket. To be fair, it was an easy walk, but the next morning my cold (which I swear was almost gone) seemed to come back with vengeance. It was either the walking or the over-indulgence in the whiskey! I’m certain it was the walking.

Due to my debilitating "cold". I was forced to stay home that next day. As you may know, I suck at being home alone. After a full day of reading, sleeping, eating and slothfulness, I HAD to do something.

Something, turns out to be a 10 mile bike ride. Hey! The bike needed some work and so did I, so all I did was ride it down to the local bike store. How was I to know that I would decide to buy a floor pump and spend WAY too long there and end up riding back in the dark with no lights, in the cold, with one hand holding the bike pump (no backpack )!?

Could have happened to anyone! OK. So maybe the bike pump wasn’t such a good idea and I could have waited until I had a car or a backpack or midget who could hold it for me, but I was in the throes of sickness; There wasn’t a whole lot of coherent though in the first place.

Regardless, I’m home, I’m alive, and I’ll be damned if this cold beats me!

Another sign of my sickness

Now that I have accepted that I dream about training, it’s becoming a recurring thing now, it seems that it’s starting to manifest itself around the house.


My entire top row of the dishwasher is full of training bottles. I didn’t even think I owned that many bottles!


When did it become socially acceptable to leave my training clothes ALL over the house! When it’s time to train, I spend the first ten minutes running around just trying to find my missing shirt. (Now if I could just calculate how many calories I burned doing that!)


Every dinner date or social outing seems to interfere with a planned training session. I find myself trying to squeeze a ‘quick’ workout in before dinner. Or a quick run around the block during lunch. Got a few extra minutes between the meetings? Damn! That’s a mile I could be running! Wasted time!


It happens to everyone. We have to do laundry. It’s (typically) a dreadful task. We all hate it, but it’s a necessary evil. Pick up laundry; throw into machine; throw into dryer; put away; repeat; and repeat; and repeat. Right?! Apparently not. I washed the training clothes, realized that was all I cared about and was DONE!
I think that is a sure sign.

I have a dream

Sorry this won’t be nearly as inspirational as that speech…but it’s true anyway (I mean I DID have ‘a’ dream ;-] )

I think it’s a sign that I have gone off the deep end. I am starting to dream in training for Tri’s.

The other day I dreamt that I won the Izumi’s “running shoes for a lifetime”. I.was.ecstatic! It’s weird (for me) when in your dream you actually try to imaging running enough to out wear the shoes in time to actually ‘use’ all the shoes [4 per year].


That’s a lot. A lot for me. 4 shoes = each shoes is 200-300 miles = umm...carry the one; divide by pie….OK it’s a lot.

800-1200 miles!

Per year!

I don’t think I’m worthy! Try telling that to yourself in your dream.

It seems even my dreams are unattainable seemingly impossible … Perhaps that’s why they call them dreams. You think!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Just because I can...

With the recent Silverman event, I didn’t get a chance to do the typical relaxed Sunday bike ride. So come Monday I was jonesing.

As it happened, Monday was Veterans Day. Meaning for me at least, this was a holiday.

Now I don’t know if you remember back to those high/middle school days but I remember skipping school with some friends (ditching). It was great! You hung out with your friends doing exciting, most likely stupid, things when you should have been at school. Perfect! I was hooked. I also recall waking up for school and just not wanting to go. So I ditched, by myself. Fun right??


The most boring time e-v-e-r! Nothing to do, because all your friends are in school. Nothing to watch (all soap operas). No one to talk to and nothing to do. Total boredom.

This is how I look at most holidays. Often I find that I am the only one of my friends who gets the holidays off (its Las Vegas, everyone has a funky schedule), so I dread these holidays.

This time my love took a half day off, which I felt extremely guilty over, while I was happy she was there, I felt like I was stealing her away from work. While she there, boredom was kept at bay. However, the second she had to go to work, boredom reared its ugly head.

I was faced with two choices TV or exercise (typically I would read, but for some reason that wasn’t appealing to me). Rather than veg away on the TV, I decided to do something productive.

I quickly got a wild hair up my wazzoo and decided to ‘race’ an Olympic Tri [minus the swim, so I guess that would be a…what?..Not a duathlon…so a…??...whatever!)

Now normally, I race Sprints. In fact I had never biked more than 15-18 miles before, so this was a big leap. But I figured I had some time and I wanted to see if it could be done.

Once on the bike I quickly learned that 25 miles is a LONG distance. I did the typical trail, then took another trail then hit the road, then the major roads, the side roads, the back roads, everything!

I’m sure the experienced riders have a few great roads they know and have a path all planned, but what I learned just stumbling around, is that every road ends too quickly or takes you too far away.

Next time, get a good route planned before.

Bike – 25.80 miles – 1:46:31 (14.5 mph)

The run was pretty much the same thing. Without a clear plan, the path I thought would take me 6 miles only took me 5 miles so there was a mile where I wandered around my neighborhood trying to make up the distance [and that’s why my last mile is so long…and that's the story I’m sticking too! ;-) ]

Run - 6.1 miles – 1:08:34 (11:00/mi)

Mile 1 – 10:33
Mile 2 – 11:21
Mile 3 – 11:05
Mile 4 – 10:16
Mile 5 – 10:54
Mile 6 – 11:47
Mile 7 (0.10 mi) – 1:24

Now before you start thinking that I’m good at running and can negatively split my run, let me explain that there was a slight bit of cheating involved here.

My shoes started bothering me after mile one and by mile two, I was dying. At mile 3, I stopped and readjusted my shoes. When I stop, my watch automatically stops too (convenient when at a stop light or forced to give directions). Of course while adjusting the shoes, I also caught my breath, brought my heart down – basically rested. As soon as the shoes were fixed, I took off running, but the damage was already done, I was cheating time. Of course this was further compounded by the fact that I did it several times (damn shoes kept killing me), until basically they were almost untied and I was barefoot.

So there you have it! I did an Olympic Tri (or whatever!).

Total time: 2:52:41 – 31.90 miles (2395 calories spent!!)

Now I didn’t time my transition, because it was pathetic. I went in checked on the animals, did a load of laundry, and had a glass of water. So it was probably 10 minutes. Not close to real race conditions but, at least I did it.

If I take my times and add in my normal T2 time, I get 2:52:41+1:30= 2:53:11. Compare that to 2007’s Rage in the Sage (which coincidently, because of weather, didn’t have a swim either, so it perfect!), that puts me in 206th place.

Which is …exactly where I’m always at. Back of the pack. Doesn’t matter if it’s Sprint or Olympic.

So the good news…I suck just as much on Olympic as I do on Sprint!

Other good news is that I have 4 months to train for my next Sprint (and I’ll be damned if I’m back of the pack then)!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Silverman Weekend

What a weekend…

First off, I won’t sully this post by talking about my workout; I’ll save that for another post.

I’ll start off by saying that this past weekend, I volunteered for the Silverman event.

In a word it was great. I had never volunteered for a triathlon before. In fact one of the main reasons for doing this was that I wanted to see how it was done. My entire experience before this was just jumping in and doing them. I’ve never actually seen what the “good” people do during transition or how they look at the end of each leg. I’ve always been concerned about myself and making sure that I didn’t make an ass out of myself falling down or getting stuck in my wetsuit. (Nothing like a little embarrassment to add to the already enlarged stress).

So rather than go straight to the volunteer post, I went to go watch the swim. It is an amazing thing to look around, see 400-500 people milling (lazily\nervously) about and know that in a few minutes they’ll all be struggling for their lives doing the impossible. As I looked around I noticed the nervous people who check and double check their equipment and then check and double check everyone else equipment to make sure they don’t have some secret advantage or check out their bike. I recognize it, because that’s me when I do events. [Check; double-check; look around; what are they doing? Should I be doing that? PAM?! What’s that for? Damn! Should I do that too?, etc]

The full wave had already gone out so there were only the half people in the area. I got to see Macca. He looked cool and calm, but I guess he should be right? There weren’t a lot of people asking for his autograph or pictures which I thought there would be. But then perhaps they were like me, trying to be ‘cool’. Like you dream about being when you meet Angelina Jolie or Brad Pitt. Just nod your head, barely acknowledge their existence. Prove that you’re ‘cool’. Or perhaps that just me.

As it turned out, this wasn’t a very good event for me to compare it too. This is built on the foundation of Ironman. That includes the big changing tents and the transitions bags. Heck, even the bike racks were better. No pipes to hang your bike on but rather full bike holders that were specially built to hold tri/road bikes. Where was the mad rush to your bike and the grabbing at your clothes while the guys next to you do the same? Is that your shoes or mine? Hey you’re wearing my socks!

After the first few people came back from the Swim, I watched them go into the bike. Or at least I tried to. The first person out of the water was already gone by the time I got up to the bikes. That boy was FAST! I watched the next couple people hop on their bikes and go, but it wasn’t as climatic as I thought it would be. I expected people to sprint to the line barefooted, leap through the air and hop on their bikes and ride, only putting on their shoes after they have hit 30 mph and are a few miles into it. (I know REALLY Hollywood). As it was I did see a few people like that but most did what I do and get everything ready and get up to line and slowly take off. I think that fact that the transition leads right into a 4-6% hill helps slow everyone down.

After watching a few people go off, it was time to go to the volunteer spot. We happened to be at the ‘feed zone’, which is basically the turnaround point.

Let me just say “Holy Crap!” I didn’t realize how FAR that is! I know that on paper it reads turn around point so right around mile 56 (actually it was 53). But I didn’t realize how far that REALLY is. It took forever to drive out there. That’s in a car. A nice climate controlled; music enabled; no effort required to move forward – Car. I can’t even imagine doing this on a bike. There are so many hills and turns and emptiness that I would give up.

I like to play a little game when I drive a course (which I try to do before the event so I ‘know’ what it’s like). I like to say “here, I’m flying along”; “here, I feel the hill”; occasionally I say “OK, now is about when I want to give up”; sometimes it’s even “I think I would be dying here”.

For Silverman…almost the whole drive I thought “Either I’m dead or I’d be puking my stomach out, then I’d die”.

I am so not ready!

Once we got to the post it was great, we had a great crew. So much support out there. The riders were great and everybody was positive. All in all, I had a great time. Even got to meet Sweet Baboo. Afterwards we drove into town (almost ran out of gas, it was so far away), went and watch the run for a little bit, called it a day and CRASHED at home.

I mean, I was exhausted! As a volunteer! I can’t even fathom how the actual triathletes felt.

Things I have learned:

1. Originally a friend had said that volunteering for this event will inspire me to want to do an Ironman. Boy, were they wrong! It was a great reality check for me and really showed me how tough an Ironman is.

2. Got to say that people look so much better at the end point of a race. When you look at people finishing their bike or finishing their swim or finishing the race people look great. There’s smiles; they're happy; it’s all good. But watch them during the event. Ugh! They are living a personal hell. No one looks happy, everyone looks about to die and it’s very sobering.

3. For your special needs, don’t pack canned beverages. Almost every bag that had a can was soaking wet as the can punctured sometime during the transport and now you the athlete have to deal with everything else in the bag being sticky and wet plus there’s this huge let down because the drink you’ve been fantasying about is wasted. I saw many an athlete look on the verge of tears when their drink dreams evaporated in front of their eyes.

Lastly, I’m going to finish this post off with something sacrilegious. Something that I am sure will get me banned from future tri’s forever. But…

Let me start by saying that everyone gave their all. Everyone out there looked great and you could tell that no one ever wanted to give up. I know that some people had to give up. Either for technical reasons or because their body gave out on them. There was one person in particular that I recall. He had to be dropped off by a RV. Somewhere along the line, an RV (hopefully not the same one that gave him a ride) edged him off the road. Now I hope it was done out of ignorance and not malice, but either way the RV ‘pushed’ the bike off course. Good news was the rider was fine, a little road rash but otherwise the rider and the bike looked good. Later on my honey said how much that would have sucked and I agreed and disagreed.

How many times have you been out on the course, especially when the course got impossibly tough and just wished that something ‘bad’ would happen? Not bad enough to hurt you or anyone else, but something bad enough to make you have to stop. It’s not your fault, you wanted to finish. You would have finished, you will finish next time, but this time something bad happened and ended (saved) your race. Outwardly you’re pissed, but internally you’re thanking the heavens.

That was what happened to this guy. Just a little road rash, nothing bad enough to scar but enough to leave a mark for a few weeks. Something to show to the guys and commiserate around a beer about. Something to push you harder next time, better prepared; tougher and more determined. Next time…you’ll be ready.

UPDATE: After ready S. Babboo's race report, I truly understand how much I underestimated the toughness of this course.

Friday, November 9, 2007

A rose by any other name

Not that this is about a rose nor is it really about a name either, but yesterday I was at my kick-ass spin class.

The instructor is great, always works us hard, plays good music and really motivates me. I thoroughly credit her with my past performance during the 9th annual Triathlon. Just prior to this she had us working on hills and visualizing passing people. While it wasn't as smooth as she had us pretend it was, it was great when in the event I was able to pass people. It felt very surreal, like a 'this is what I'm training for' moment.

She announced to the class that she'll be taking the weekend off (which is no big thing to me as I train outdoors on the weekend), but got me thinking about the Silverman. It’s this weekend, and I was curious to see if that was the reason she was going to take class off. She is in good enough shape that it's plausible.

I mention this to her and she's says no, she camping; never done a tri before but is thinking about it, then she sheepishly says she’s never actually been on a “real” bike before.

I understand the no tri before; it seems that a lot of people specialize in one aspect. Runners are strictly runners and bikers are strictly bikers (swimmers are insane, so I don't count them!). What struck me was the "never been on a real bike".

Holy Cow! This is my “role model” telling me that she has never rode in a real world environment. That's like a marriage counselor telling you the tips for a good marriage but never being married themselves. It's easy to throw stones when you live on the outside looking in (I think I butchered several sayings there).

But maybe I'm being elitist. Maybe it's not the same as having no practical experience in the field in which you teach.

I mean what am I looking for? I want to be motivated to cycle [check!]; to raise my heart rate [check!] and sometimes to be driven to the point of death [check! (sometimes double-check]. So really, she is meeting all the 'basic' needs. Plus I get to listen to some great music, stuff I would have never thought of (BTW: Celtic music is GREAT hill climbing music!), I get to visualize the race environment, and I get some good stretches in when it's all done.

Now I'm sure, I'll have a voice in the back of my head that tells me "this isn't really how it is on the road". And the sad thing is, it’s true, there is no way you can simulate the road experience. But it’s an awesome workout and the instructor does their best to push you to your limits.

All in all, I guess it's a great thing. I just wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Some Ideal Thursday

Well the cross training class went off without a problem. It seems that the faster I ran the less it hurt. Somehow (magically) the instructor must have ‘sensed’ this and therefore made us run more sprints then I have in my life! (Either that or he’s a sadistic bastard…I’m hoping that it’s the former rather than the latter)

If there was ever a time to find my Max heart rate, that was the time. I started the sprints great and flew by people like I was running with the wind. However come round 10 or so, I was dead and my sprint wasn’t much better than my fast walk. Perceived effort was through the roof. Of course…I left my HRM in the car!

Thursday is my “relax in bed with my honey” morning. Meaning that we sleep-in until the last minute then run around like headless chickens to get out of the house in time for work. Friday is the same; expect that it’s a total rest day (we’ll be doing spin tonight).
It’s amazing to me, but I feel like I should be doing something during these mornings. I feel that I’m wasting valuable training time. I get up early on the other mornings and go work out, so I feel like I should be doing the same now. It’s hard to remind myself that this is the “off season” and I’m taking it easy and enjoying time with the Mrs. while I still have it.

Which brings me to the next subject…Upcoming events. Currently, we’re training for the Las Vegas Marathon. We’re looking at doing the half so I’m not overly concerned (hence the taking it easy part). We’re more in the mode to ‘just finish’ rather than do it under a certain time. This will be the Mrs.’ first half so she’s worried about finishing, but I already know that she can do it (probably with her eyes closed). If we take it nice and slow (run/walk) we’ll be finished in 2:30-2:50. I’m thinking that we could really push it and be done in 2:00 but that would require a 9 min/mile and we wouldn’t be enjoying life (read partying) then. Hell, I don’t know if I’d be enjoying anything after that. We plan on partaking in a few beers and we need a strong energy supply to handle that; I can’t let something like a race and sore muscles interfere with our drinking!

I know that the Las Vegas Great Santa Run is coming up also. In fact it’s actually the day before the marathon. What better way to race then dressed as Santa? The race sounds great, get a 5 piece Santa outfit included in the race entry fee as well as help break a World Record. How perfect! The main question is will the honey be up to running a 5k then running a half the next day?

I just found out that some Bloggers are going to be in town for the events. That great! I’ve never met JohnnyTri or Sweet Baboo, but I’ve read there blogs for a while now. Hopefully we’ll be able to meet up and have a beer or two.

It’s late and it’s time to head to Spin class.

Update: I forgot that I walked a few miles during breaks at work. But now that I've entered the new workout schedule widget at the side, I guess this is kind of a moot point.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

First Post... first post!!

Hmm...the lack of applause is deafening. Well being as I'm the only one in the world who knows about this blog (not counting all those bits and bytes of search engines), I suppose silence is expected.

So without further ado, I'll get to the point of this blog and talk about training.

Early Morning workout was a quick run with my gym running group. The leader wasn't there so we relied on number 2 to lead us, and while she's great she's also slow. I still haven't worked up enough nerve to set my own pace on the run (besides the whole point is to run 'with' the group, right?), so we started off at a 14:00 pace. Things picked up later on and we finished the run with an average 12:28 pace. I'll take it.

Run - 3.42 miles - 42:40 (12:28/mi).

Actually, I should be glad we went slow. I must have jinxed myself about my running health because this morning for no good reason my calf/Achilles is killing me. Luckily no one noticed during the run but I was dying. It eventually worked its way into a dull numbing sensation but once I got to work it was back with vengeance.

Walk - 1.04 miles - 18:58

Now it's off to the gym for my awesome cross training class. Hopefully my Achilles doesn't rip itself out of my calf.

Wish me luck!