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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Boys and Toys

Today was like Christmas for me, I got new toys today!  I am like a kid(or a man) when I get new things.  I need to try them out right away and make sure they are as cool as they seem.
The first of the toys are my new Rudy Project prescription sunglasses.  They rock!  I wear glasses and have been using contacts during most sports.  They work great for the first while, then the sweat gets into the eyes and they get twisted around and eventually become a pain in the butt.  So, these glasses are an awesome change.  I have tried Rx sunglasses in the past and have had limited success in the past.  Usually with a wrap around type of glass there is distortion.  If you are looking straight ahead they work, but as soon as you need to look to the side it makes you feel like you are drunk, eventually they lead to a headache.  Rudy's new technology seems to have nailed that problem down.  I rode and ran with them and have had no issues at all.  They are super light, UV protection and have not distortion whichever was I look through them.  I have a challenging prescription and they have addressed it and made a lens that is exact, actually better than my regular glasses.  Needless to say, I am pumped with these as they allow me to see without the problems of contacts getting twisted around and uncomfortable as the races get tougher.  If you are looking for a pair of Rx sunglasses or just a regular sunglass, try these guys out, they do a great job.  You can go to  Rudy Project Gear for sunglasses or to Rudy Rx Sunglasses.  You wont be disappointed!
Toy #2!  Less practical, but a lot of fun!  A Flip Video camera.  My wife gets some benefits at work, this was one of them.  Her company owns the company so she brought one home today.  It is great, simple and takes great video.  Simply put a battery in it, press record and your done.  Then to download to computer, plug in the integrated USB and BOOM!  It is done.  Just like that.  It is not super high quality video, but for a big price of $149. you get a great quality picture in a package the size of a deck of cards. If you are looking for a cheap video camera to record some fun moments, this one is great.  (you can get a water tight box to 30 feet as well)  It will be a great toy at races to record the fun moments that go along with the event.  Check it out here, Flip Video.
After all the toys I did manage to get a decent couple of workouts today.  The first was in the water.  A fin workout that made me smile.  The main part of the workout was a ladder, 50, 150, 250, 350, 450, 350, 250, 150, 50.  It was a great swim and I enjoyed getting into a good groove.  It brought a smile to my face as the it was doing ladders that helped me get my miles up in swimming.  Only 9 months ago my ladder consisted of 25, 50, 100, 50 ,25.  And that was one big struggle, I would barely be able to get it complete without swallowing a few gallons of the sweet chlorinated pool water.  Smiling while swimming seemed to make the practice go by quicker.    The 3500m swim was great and I managed it in 1h15m.
Tonight was my run clinic and the fun starts for the people who joined me for the evening.  We are a few weeks into the clinic and tonight was time for some hills!  It was not bad with 3 repeats of a decent hill, done to start the build.  They all rocked it, they danced over the hill for all the repeats and then finished the run with a negative split.  I guess i was to easy tonight, next week I will have to make it hurt a little more.  Overall a great workout with a great committed group!
I hope your day was awesome as well, new toys, great workouts and a smile to make it complete!
Happy Canada Day!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

With every good thing comes reality!

To this point I have been healthy and had no real set backs in my training.  Luckily no injuries as I have been methodical about how I am doing things and respected what my body is telling me.  And, luckily up to this point I have not been sick, up to this point I said!
After an awesome weekend with great training it has got me!  ON Sunday while swimming and running I had a headache the whole time.  I could feel myself getting stuffed up a little, but I was not going to pass on the chance to be on the course.  As we finished up the training day the headache stuck around.  Yesterday I was exhausted and felt like I had been hit by a truck.  So, I did what I have not done yet in my training?! I took yesterday as my rest day so that I could get more rest and avoid the cold that has been trying to get me for a few days.(I am not skipping the workout as I am going to do it on friday which is listed as a rest day)  It seems to have been a success as today I was a little tired but able to get back at it.This week is my  recovery week, as this week is done I go into high gear and the training kicks it up a few notches!  I am looking forward to rocking the next few weeks and going through the intensity of the training that is ahead of me.  I am actually happy to have had this short cold now as it ideally means that I wont get it over the next few weeks.
Today's workout was an easy day.  A 35k bike ride at HR2-3 with some single leg drills and a couple of short hill intervals.  It was a great workout!  Although it was short I am feeling that the training I have been doing is coming into my rides.  This past weekend as I was riding I actually could feel the benefit of the training, the ride was one that I know will pay off as I move forward.  I suppose that is why I am looking forward to the next few weeks as I know it will build my strength towards an ideally successful race day!  back to the workout, it was short and intense and my HR spoke and told me that the cold is not sitting there waiting to attack.  I kept my HR in Zone 1 and low 2 the entire workout which is hard to do and is no where near what I was at on the weekend.  I finished the first half of the ride with an easy T-run which also felt great.  I rode to the LULULEMON store and did my club run with the store as my T-run.  It works well as I am able to stay at a low HR  zone for the run and enjoy running with the people at the store who are working towards a goal with me.  I guess it is the best of both worlds.  After the run, I jumped back on my bike and completed a great workout.
With 74 days to go to the start line, I must say that the journey is still one of a lifetime!  After being in Madison this weekend I have to day that the rest of the journey is even more exciting.  I have had a taste of what the town is like, what the course will be.  Now, I just need the adrenaline of the start cannon to get me going!  Wahhoooo!  The ride is getting better every day!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Wisconsin IM Camp weekend!

In a nut shell......IT WAS AWESOME!
THe opportunity to go down to Madison and ride, run and swim the course was one of the best training tools that I could have spent money on.  I enjoyed every minute of the event(except for the terrible Super 8 beds)   I went down for the purpose of seeing the course and gaining a little familiarity before I get numbers painted on me and tackle it.  That was accomplished, otherwise I had not developed any expectations or come up with any conclusions about the rest of the weekend!  So, all the other things we did were a great bonus and will be put into my triathlon training toolbox moving ahead!
Needless to say, when we arrived on Friday tired was the one thing that I was feeling.  I was up at 4AM for the days travel fun!?  Our flight to Milwaukee was harmless and the drive to Madison was easy as could be. Even managed to visit a couple of bikes stores along the trip to pick up some necessities for the weekend(airport security took all CO2 catridges)
Friday night was spent at a presentation on IM nutrition.  A couple of interesting things came from that lecture.  1) A lot of people are very uninformed or ignorant to nutrition when it comes to long endurance events 2) the coach who is a 25 veteran in athletics, KONA racer, ranked US triathlete made a comment about the race as a whole, an IRONMAN is not a swim, bike, run race, it is primarily a nutrition race, you might be the best at any discipline, but without nutrition you are on the side of the road!  He presented ideas and his experiences on how to manage nutrition on IM day.  I found it to be a great review of the information that I have reviewed up to this point.  I will be using many points that he presented over the next few weeks to see how it works for me.
Saturday was the first full day, and that it was!  By 7AM we were in the water learning about many small things that new IM'ers may not consider.  Wisconsin is an in-water start which means you are on the lake treading water before the gun goes off.  We talked about the best way to be positioned when the canon goes off.  He brought light to the fact that you are going to get hit, so learn to deal with it. Strategies on how to minimize the chaos in relation to the course were reviewed.  We spent some time drafting and sighting over the 1 hour AM swim.  Overall it was a great session with one hour spent in the water treading water and swimming.
Immediately following it was time to get on the bikes and ride the course.  One of the big things that you hear when people talk about Wisconsin is that the hills can eat you up.  The opportunity to ride the course would help to define that for me and make certain that I was ready for the course and what it was going to hand me over the race day.  It is a 2 loop course that is primarily in the country with a lot of potential for wind.  So, right away a lesson learned and a mind set to be in is in my race strategy bag.
As we headed out on the course, the hills started early.  In the early part of the course they are not crazy, however, they are there often.  The course is up a big stick and then 2 loops, the loops begin to be a little more challenging.  Once again the hills are not crazy, they are plentiful and a good strategy is important. Otherwise, the second loop will kick you in the butt in a big way.  The course is awesome as far as scenery, the countryside has great vistas and a lot of time to enjoy the otherwise long ride.  The chance to ride it was a great bonus, I am truly satisfied with my investment.
Following the ride we spent the first part of the afternoon taking about some on course maintenance,  How to change a flat, surprise!  Some of the people in the room had never done it before.   I was lucky enough to change one just before the end of the ride so I was able to observe the various techniques in changing a tire.
Then, the part that I feel was where I need the most help was a running session.  We spent close to an hour talking about the dynamics o running and how to do it efficiently.  It was great. I have done one other running clinic in the past and found it to be a suggestion that I was running wrong.  This session was terrific in giving pointers and good studies technical advice on running form.  I believe that over the next few months and moving forward the hour will provide a lot of benefit to my IM running as well as my future goal to reach Boston on my own qualifying time.
We then did another great session on nutrition.  This session was great as it provided in depth techincal knowledge and methods of calculating requirements requirements.  Being a bit of a geek when it comes to wanting to accomplish this goal properly this was a great session.  It has given me more opportunities to work on my nutrition over the training sessions.
Then, a great session on mental preparation.  I believe that there are a lot of athletes who are spectacular physically, but let the mind bury them at race time.  This session was awesome from both a reminder of the importance as well as some tools to use leading up to and on race day!
The end of day one was a great finish.  Th owner of the camp invited us to his parents  house to enjoy a great dinner hosted by them.  What a great way to end a super day of training!  A good meal and a great rest at the end of the day!
Day 2!  Great start to the morning!  We headed to the lake that the course will be set on for a morning swim.  What a great morning.  The weather was perfect, calm lake, good water temperature!  We did the swim on part of the course that represented about half of the event day.  My swim was great.  I have found that my open water swims seem to be smoother and I get into a better groove than the pool practice.  I felt like I got into a great rhythm and was able to do the distance with little exertion.  I hope that race day has the same overall conditions as these were perfect.
The culmination of the camp was a great run on the course.  It starts on the helix that is the transition area of the course and then is 100% in the city.  It is a great course with no real areas that are away from support.  It is great as you are through many city landmarks and to the areas that you would visit if you were in Madison.  I was in Madison 3 years ago for a football game and got to run by the parking lot that I tailgated in that day.  The course is great.  Once again there are a couple of hills but nothing that is over the top.  I do realize that the run is after a 118 mile ride so it will be nasty, but knowing what I am going to encounter allows me to plan a run in a strategic and realistic way.  Overall it is an awesome run with a great finish area.   I am looking forward to the day that is not so far way when I am moving across it with 100's of people around.
Overall the weekend was tremendous, sending shivers down my spine like the day that I registered.  It is exciting to know that in a little more than 2 months I will be on the course for the real deal.  Like the day I signed up, I cant wait for the moment!
If you are going to do the IMWI at any time, I highly recommend this camp.  It is not a meat head blow your brains to show how awesome you are weekend, it is to learn.  To gain course knowledge and lessons from a couple of great coaches.  McWilliams Training and Dwight Sandvold were awesome hosts and I will train with them ad other athletes in the future!
A 10 out of 10 weekend and one that I am totally satisfied with!  I hope that your races and training were as awesome!

Friday, June 25, 2010

It's time to go play!

Getting up at 4am is never a good time to get up. Especially when your flight is not until 8am. With the current G20 summit in Toronto the traffic has been randomly chaotic and many friends suggested getting here way ahead of time. Seeing as I am here to go play for the weekend, I will accept it with a smile.
The airport during a political summit is an interesting place to be with a bike box. I was asked 1/2 dozen questions, what's in the box, what kind of bike, is that an instrument. Curiosity from police is a little higher than usual. With the exception of having to get rid of the CO2 cartridges, it was an easy morning! Now I have 2 hours to wait before my flight. So in proper relaxation format, I am sitting with my feet up in the Air Canada lounge having a coffee.
I am looking forward to the weekend and learning some new tricks and being exposed to the course that the race will be on in less than 3 months. It will be a great warm up.
I hope you all have a great weekend! Happy training and great race to those out there ripping it up!
Sent from my BlackBerry device on the Rogers Wireless Network

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hump day, gotta love it!

I guess every day is hump day while I am in my current between job state!  Not really, I have been working on a few projects that are keeping me as busy as being at work.  So, hump day this week is great as it means that I am one day closer to heading down to Wisconsin for a 2 day training camp for IM.  I am so pumped about being able to go down there to ride and run the course, it will give me a lot more confidence when it comes to race day.  Having some familiarity with what I am about to tackle will be a great help in having a ore successful event!  But, it might not be either!  In any case it is going to be an awesome weekend surrounded with other IM athletes working towards the start line together in September!
Non training, I am working on getting back to work!  As I have worked in the same industry for close to 15 years, I feel that I have reached an end to the opportunity.  I am at a point where I am not feeling inspired.  That being said, I am taking the time that I have to seek and develop opportunities that closer reflect my passion and the things that I would have pursued later had this not happened.  I will surely have an exciting few weeks working towards this goal.  Enough about work, this is a blog about training!
Today was an awesome day at the pool!  I have had an action packed week with training  a minimum of 2 workouts a day since Saturday.  I am starting to feel the week piling up, but the swim did not show it!  The intervals have now gone from 100m repeats to 400m repeats.  Not long ago 2 or 3 of them would have knocked the wind out of me and I would have had to push myself through the workout. Today I kept my form, my speed and my HR all the way through. Even the kick part of the practice saw improvement from the past weeks.  In the last 1/3rd of the swim there were some 100m repeats.  I kept a 1:40 pace up to that point and was still moving with good form.  I actually feel like my form has improved over the last few days, with a cleaner pull through the entire stroke.  I know the swim is a matter of getting it done in IM, but I am feeling that I am gaining an ability to get it done with some comfort rather than being exhausted out of the water.  It can only keep getting better.
I followed my swim with a run with the clinic that I am leading.  WOW!  Was it hot! The temperature was 27-28C and quote humid.  Within 1km I was sweating like a madman, but it felt great to be running with the group.  They are all very keen to reach the 1/2 marathon goal this fall and they are as keen to be out doing the training no matter what the conditions.  It was a bonus run, but still a positive 7.5k in the books!
Overall hump day was awesome!  I woke up this morning, the sun was shining, my friends were smiling and the world was waiting for me to check it out!  Although I am 2 weeks into my 'break' I am feeling better than ever, as I said when I first started this rest time, things happen for a reason, and today was another day working towards that reason!
I hope you had a great day and that the 2nd half of the week brings you as much positive energy as I have been getting!  Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

when life is fun it only gets better!( my rant on life)

After having an awesome weekend, a good race, fun with the best friends you could have, good weather and my health, how could you top it???  Well, I woke up this morning and for no particular reason at all it was even better!
A positive outlook is worth more than you could earn with the best job in the world, with the most money on the planet and all the toys that the companies could give you.  Being surrounded by cool people with a love for life, an excitement for the next challenge ahead of them and the challenges that they allow themselves to enjoy  is the best way to live your day!  Yep, it sounds like garbedly gook, but try it!  Enjoy the challenges that are in front of you, the people who inspire you to try something new and you will find a new world that you might think is pretty damn cool!
The last couple of weeks has been a little different with the unexpected change in career directions(or current lack thereof).  I suppose I could sit at home and worry about my future and what it brings, NO WAY!  life is to damn short to spend time doing that!  I have taken it as an opportunity to recognize my passion and a chance to go and do something about it!  After 2 weeks, I am  have now realized what it is that motivates me and where I should focus my energies, why chase the little silver ball when it does not satisfy the passion that inspires you to be the best that you can!
I choose to do triathlon because it makes me smile, it drives me to be a better athlete and to make me push myself to  new level.  It challenges me as an individual and pushes me past where I am comfortable.  I choose the friends that I do because they inspire me to be a better person and to challenge myself each day.  I choose to support charities because I feel that they are important to our future.  I work with others to reach the goals that they don't think that they can reach because I think that we all deserve to challenge ourselves and enjoy how it feels to do that!
The past few days has been all about living the life of finding fun!  If you allow yourself to be who you are, life is a cool adventure that is the best thing that we have to enjoy!  Run a race, have a drink, help someone get to a new high, fail and learn from it!  All of it is part of the journey we are here to enjoy, ENJOY IT!
Thanks to all those that inspire me, challenge me and make me push myself to new levels!  you make this life a far cooler adventure than most get to enjoy!
(disclaimer:  I don't read and edit what I write as this is a blog meant to capture what is on my mind at moment)

Training Today:

Yep, I do train today and it was awesome!
As all Tuesday are, it was a hard core bike workout, TURBO as it is commonly referred to!  Mother Nature was a little nasty today and decided that she did not want cyclist who were outside to be dry.  I decided to set up my road bike on the trainer to get my workout done.  Trainer workouts are far ore disciplined that the road, so I consider them much better.  It was a big sweat fest!  The interval hour was great, if you like that kind of stuff!  I pushed my HR, pushed my legs and kept me honest!  I need at some point to get a power meter on my bike, you can not cheat!  Although I did work hard today, the watts challenge me to go harder and to keep pushing to see what else I can do.  Although my power output was lower than the past, my speed seems to have picked up a bit.  I now need to keep working to equal the output and see how much it increases my speed.  All that being said, the trainer ride was awesome(data below)

Avg Speed:  34 kmh
Watt:  216     Max Watt:  522
Average:  90
HR:  140
Time 55 min
Distance  32.1        (great trainer ride)

The T-run was strong as well, I ran like a mad man.  The workout caller for a 2-3 HR and I did that.  My pace was a 5:03 for the run.  It was a tough run with hot weather, but it went well!  Phase 1 was only 25 minutes as I had a LULU run tonight as well!  With the weather being a  little stormy tonight, only one person joined me for the run.  She is a great runner, so Phase 2 was another great move!  Another 25 minutes at a 5min/k pace, it was a great run in the heat(mother nature was kind and kept us dry)

Overall it was an awesome day!  I trained hard and enjoyed the challenges!  Hope you enjoyed it for how good and lucky we are as well!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Hey, this training stuff works!

This past weekend I completed a sprint distance tri as my first race of the season.  I have only 2 other races planned, 1 other sprint and a 1/2 Iron before the full in Wisconsin.  Why a sprint?  Well, in my transition from fat dude to someone trying to be a triathlete I had competed in sprints in the past.  I wanted to do this as my first race where I can truly say that I have been training like a triathlete.  And I wanted to leave what I had on the road to see what kind of improvements a few months of training can make.  So here is my happy race report!!
Fist, here are my results from the last event that I competed in, the distanced vary as this past weekend was regulation course as it was the Ontario Association Triathlete championship event.

2009 Guelph Lake Sprint
Weigh in:  206(clydesdale division)
Section         Category place        Overall Place      Time        Pace           T1         T2      
Swim 750m       33/56                         333/588        18:23      2:27/100    2:23        2:09    
Bike 30k            10/56                         55/588          51:56      34.7kmh  
Run 7k               38/56                        326/588         37.54      5:25min/k
2010 Guelph Lake Sprint
Weigh in: 181
Swim 750m       10/56                          92/400           14:54     2:00           2:46       2:02
Bike 19k            4/56                            13/400           32:31     35.1kmh
Run 5k               15/56                          117/400         24:05     4:49min/k

To summarize, I feel like I completed not like I was out there to do a sprint tri!  I loved the event and my results and I learned a ton of lessons for moving into other events and training.

PreRace Fun:
I am very particular about pre race routines and timing.  I hate getting to an event and having to rush to get ready, so I always leave a ton of time on the front and back of events to prevent that from happening.  This weekend worked out well, although the start was a little late, the event was well organized and got me to the relaxed point faster than previous years.   When we arrived, I started to get my gear ready for the event, my wife(who is a saint for being there and supporting) suggested that I could smile for the photos she was taking.  I responded and told her that before a race I am in my zone and it is not smiling time!  :)  I really don't know what that zone is, but I do know I tend to close off the world around me and get very focused on having my gear laid out and organized.    In a very efficient time frame I was at transition and set up to go!

Warm up:
In the past I have not been a big warm up guy.  I did most of these to get across the line without much concern for time, so doing a warm up was just using energy that I needed for the event.  This weekend I did a short run and some drills to get loosened up.  I believe it was good as it got my HR up before the event, got my muscles warmed up and ready to go. I then put in my wetsuit and made my way to the lake. The water was around 70 with a little wave, but nothing alarming.  I wanted to focus on a good swim warm up as I have been eaten up by the water in the past.  It was great to be in the open water and getting a good feel for it.  It was also a practical swim as half way through I felt my nail starting to come off.  I knew it was a matter of time before it did, I am happy that I felt it rather than someone swimming behind me and ripping it off in the race!  I got it all taped up and ready to go.

It's race time!!
In the past I have tended to be out in the back of the pack waiting for the horn to go off before rushing to the water.  This year I placed myself front and center in order to be in the pack. I wanted to take some punches, pulls and kicks as part of training.  As the clock rolled back, I got myself into the final mental zone and we were off!
As soon as the horn was off I started to porpoise out to where I could get into a swim.  Within a short while I was in a rhythm and moving forward away from other swimmers.  I had a slight technical in that my goggles started to fog making sighting tough, but I was able to follow the wave ahead well enough to get me to the marker without doing a drunken wander in the water!  As we made our way out, I was getting pulled a bit by others. A few swimmers seemed to think that was the way to continue along and did it 2-3 times in a row.  So, I added a slight flutter to my kick to remind them that the entire lake was available and hanging onto my ass was not the option for this afternoon!  As I was swimming I focused on a relaxed breath so as to not get my HR off the scale.  I was only breathing to one side and every 3rd and it was working great.  I did focus on form and a good roll to get my hands out of the waves and that did well for me in the swim. Bu hte time I reached the first marker I started to pass other swimmers.  Coming around the mark was a good exercise in sighting as it seemed everyone was gathering there, I took set a line early and stuck to it which got me through the corner with no drama at all.  The second leg had the waves coming straight at me but did not break my rhythm or breathing which I was happy about.   As I rounded the 3rd marker there was all sorts if swimmer action.  A couple of heats had gathered together so it was a little more strategic to get through.  After a couple more punches and some jockeying I was past the chaos on my way in. Before I knew it i was on shore running up to T1 feeling great.  I had no idea what my swim had been as I was not wearing a watch for that part, so I went with my gutt feel and smiled while I changed for the ride.
The Ride!
The bike has always been the stronger discipline for me so I don't get to excited about it,  y nerves reamain calm as I get out on the road.  As my strategy today was to leave it all on the road, I had to be strategic on the bike and not blow my brains out so I could not run.  I planned on riding at a comfortable pace, maintain a decent HR and make sure that I could run a decent run after the cruise.  As soon as I got onto the road I started passing people.  I spent the entire ride yelling 'on your left' as I rode past a lot of riders.  The course was a fair hill ride with no real killer hills, but it was not flat to say the least.  My shifting was efficient and I used it well to take advantage of the downhills which preceded most ups.  At no point during the ride was I passed or chased and I did ride it comfortable, possible leaving a little more  in the tank to save for the run.  Not having taken a leave it out there strategy left me holding a little more than I could have done.  The past rides have all been 30k rides and I thought this year was as well. As we got just past the 10k mark we turned around.  I thought it was a little odd to be turning early, so I figured they changed the course a bit from prior years.  As I rode back towards the start I was totally confused about it still believing that I was going to turn and ride more.  No, it was a 19k course, I kind of felt cheated as I was having a great ride and wanted to keep going!  I crossed the line with fuel in the tank and a positive vibe in how I rode.  I had no idea that it was quite as good as it had been.  I made my way into transition and racked my bike for the run.  My transitions could have both been quicker that they were, I have learned that lesson and will not fiddle in the next ones!
It's run TIME!
The run is the part of the event that I like the least now.  I have benchmarked myself against some awesome runners and it makes it a real challenge for me.  Most of my friends run a 10k well under 4o minutes and that is what I apsire to do.  I am a bit of a bone head about it as they have been runners their whole lives and all come to the sport from that area of strength.  My goal today was to be under a 5min/k on the run.  As I made my way out I looked down at my GARMIN and saw that I was on pace to manage that.  I had to be cautious of my HR as it is my guide to how I could hold.  As I started on the run I passed quite a few people and was feeling good about how it was moving along.  After a couple of hills my HR was spiking so I decided to do a short walk to let it drop so I did not do an overall explode.  Good strategy!  Iy allowed me to continue along at a sub 5 as soon as I started running again.  My transition to run was also excellent with my stride being relaxed almost immediately into the run.   I have a good training friend who has kicked my butt in past years on the swim, been close on the bike and killed me on the run.   Today I was running fast enough that I took him until between km 3&4 of 5 to catch up with me.  He told me to run with him but I could not keep his pace which was about a 4:05.  But I did not let him totally get away.!  The run was hot and I use water stations to both hydrate and cool down.  Before I knew it I was crossing the line and it was done!
I was bouncing about the result before I saw it.  I knew I had done a good race in relation to past events and I knew where I need to keep working!
Post  RAce thoughts:
Swim:  Well, I took almost 4 minutes off my previous result and did that with less than 1 year of training.  Sure I know I can go faster, but I want to keep it in perspective.  I will continue to work on form and pacing for longer distance to allow me to finish comfortable.  I saw the swim coach this weekend and will be with her in the next couple of weeks for stroke imnprovement.  Overall I feel I had an awesome swim and a great basis for continued improvement this season and forward.  (I have been told to take 45 seconds from my time due to placement of mats)
Bike: I think the bike was good!  I know that if I out in some good weight sessions I can build my power and further improve my ride.  Overall, 1km/h faster is not going to make a big difference but I am not going to let it slip.  I am getting my old riding legs back and I am pleased with that.
Run: Overall I accomplished my goal!  Yes, that is great!  I could have done better!  I had to walk a couple of times to get that pace.  Had I been more consistent I likely could have managed a 4:40 pace.  But it is awesome compared to the past results!  It is great as it is going to help me realign my training a bit to be able to reach those goals.  I felt good but poor active recovery.  So, moving forward I have a few weeks of good hill workouts ahead to make some changed where required!
Summary:  I am personally happy as hell!  I kicked butt relative to past years results and I believe that gives me the right to call myself a triathlete.  I told my training pal that this year I would be out of the swim transition before he got there, I did that!  I told him I would crush his bike leg, I did that!  I admitted he would smoke me on the run.  Well, I held my own from that perspective!  Another season of training and he had better change his ways or he will be watching my heels the entire race! High, I hope you read this and take it as a challenge!
It was a great confidence building race and it served its goals 100%.  We followed it with a 4 hour ride home for good measure, so it was a perfect day!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

What an awesome day!

Still running from the action packed few days! Did a sprint tri today and knocked it out of the park from a performance improvement perspective! I am happy as could be with the result. My overall result is at better is each category and it was an awesome barometer for what I can add to my sport! I will do a full report tomorrow with photos and play by play! Gotta run, the mighty canadian beer store is about to close and I need to dehydrate! Hope your day has been awesome!
Sent from my BlackBerry device on the Rogers Wireless Network

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Another busy day!

This whole idea of having 8 extra hours seems to give me little more free time than I felt I had before!  It is great though!
I spent the early part of my day evaluating what I have done and where I want to go to.  I looked at my goals and balanced where I am and the reality of where I want to get to.  That is a great process to go through and I find it quite refreshing to look at it from a 'free' perspective.  Looking at it when you have the time and can draw the map the way you would like to in order to reach your priorities is great!  The early part of my day was an awesome success doing this.
As I got past this productive part, it was time to get into the garage and do some bike maintenance.  I love doing that stuff!  I set up my bike stand and managed to get 4 bikes addressed over 3 hours.    This past weekend it was raining a little during the ride which left bikes in a state of 'not nice'.  So being able to address them with detailed time and focus was awesome.  I actually had a tooth brush out able to spend time cleaning springs in the detailers and getting to the tight spots to make sure all was back in tip top shape.  It has been a while since I have done that without having to pay someone else to do that for me.  Another awesome part of free time!
Today was a great swim day.  I feel like i have made some strides in the past while on the swim.  The only place that I have made any changes is in the head position in the water.  All I can say is that I feel like I am moving through easier than before. when I am doing my workouts, I am able to bilateral far easier than before and I am doing it a lot more relaxed than earlier.  Today was an AT practice which is usually quite tough. No exception today with a tough ladder to complete mixed in with a whole lot of kicking.  As I have spent a lot of time kicking I am ow starting to feel the benefits of it.  Wether it is kick drills or part of my freestyle I feel that I am benefiting from the kick.  Don't get me wrong the kick drills are still a nasty part of the swim, but loving what it is helping with.  I did see Laura who told me about head position in the water today, I thanked her a ton  and told her than I felt it had helped me.  Shortly after she headed off the wall for a swim. I followed her and was able to draft her today, not like last week when she dropped me like a bad smell!  It was a great feeling to know that something new is working.  Next time in the water I am going to time a 100 and see where I am at.  As always a great swim!
Tonight was week 2 of the ROGA session I am leading.  I have a new group out this session with all of them wanting to so a 1/2 marathon as a goal.  They are all supper motivated and very enthusiastic in working towards the start line.  It is a blast to run with them.  Tonight we did a little over 6k at a good steady pace with all of them strong from start to finish.  And even though all of them have a big party on Saturday, they are all coming out on Sunday for a long run with me.  I am going to start my run with them and add on another 1.5 hours after we are done.  Great to see that they have great enthusiasm and are willing to come out after a good party night.  I am looking forward to coaching the entire group to the start line!
Another fun part of my day was the post run clean up.  I have been working to lose fat and get my weight to where I would like to be at race time.  As I am doing it, it had become entertaining to weigh in after workouts to see where I am at(I don't use this as my proper weigh in stat)  Over time I have chuckled at t how much I can  lose over a workout.   Today was truly entertaining!  One year ago I started this process at 223lbs.  Today I weighed in a 179.5.  I feel stronger and healthier than ever and I am loving the journey.  I can't wait to see what my current schedule brings to me as I continue to train and enjoy this challenge!  All I can say is WAHOO!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

OK, maybe I am feeling the start of IM training?!

Day 2 of my current relaxed life was another productive one.  I was able to plant a few seeds and get some more 'house keeping' managed.  I am using the time to its best.  The other cool thing is the ability to train a little more mentally rested, not having to rush around all day and then get to to my practice and finish all the other chores makes life a whole lot easier.  I am going to enjoy it while it is here, it sure would be awesome to be able to play around like this for a year.  I wonder what kind of results you could pull off given the opportunity to do it?  Maybe one day!
Today was another great day on the training front.  It is one of the first days where I can say I am feeling the volume I put in on the weekend.  Yesterday was not a tough day with a good swim, I find the water to be a recovery workout as long as is not an AT workout.  Today was not swimming, not at all.  It was a AT bike workout with a ton of high cadence, big gear, spinning and digging.  Within a short time on the bike I could feel my legs, not the kind of feel that is normal up to this point in my training.  My program said that as I head into these weeks there would be a lot of workouts done under some sore and tired conditions.  I think that I started it a few days early by doing the ride this weekend.  Oh well!  Like I have been inspired by all the people that I read about and am inspired by, SUCK IT UP!  So, I cranked away for my 70 minute workout with 36km, average HR of 140 and a lot of grimacing!  Today was the first time that I did the single leg drills on my bike on the road.  What a great thing to do.  You can fake it a lot when you do them on the trainer as you tend to not feel the imbalance as much, on the road it glares at you instantly!  So, I moved through the workout and followed with the single leg exercise.  Overall the bike was tough, but I have to day that I love the grind!
As I was riding I was wondering what the T run would be like with the heavy legs, HMmmmm, potentially was going to be a disaster.  So as soon as I got my bike in the garage I put on my shoes and hit the road. I brought the dog with me today to make me run a little more controlled and slower.  My T-run was much better than imagined.  I limited it to 20 minutes as I had another run to do later in the evening. The transition to running was great with no real problem getting the legs going.  And the lead I was feeling on the ride seemed to be no issue as I moved along the road.  I was very happy with the overall brick, and as we have all heard a million times, no pain, no gain!
Tonight was also as great run with the LULU gang.  Most of the people I am running with are training for a 1/2 marathon in the fall.  We are doing 7-8k for our runs currently and I am spending some time with them helping them towards the overall goal they want to achieve.  It is a great run for me and I enjoy helping lead the runners towards their goals.  From day one running with the LULU gang I have had a great time and it is a great part to have in my training. I look forward to seeing the runners reach their goals in the fall!
I hope your day was awesome and your training is going to the top of the scales!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Apparently now the IRONMAN training begins??

First thing I will do is post a photo of my awesome teammates  from the Ride to Conquer Cancer.  Between us this weekend we rode close to 1000km and contributed +$34000.00 to the Princess Margaret Hospital.  Thank you!  The non cycling folks were our awesome support crew for the weekend.  They picked us up, delivered bikes, made us our meals and made the weekend possible.  Without them the logistics would have been a whole different experience from the 'luxuries' they provided us.  Thank you!
Today was a good start to my temporary new stage in my career.  Thank you to all of you for your wishes, and I know it is all good karma for the great place that this event is bringing me to.
I started day one getting organized and figuring out a bit of a time line for myself to 'play' around.  It is a luxury to have the time to be able to do this, so I want to use it as wisely as I can. I don't have months to burn, but I can likely enjoy some extra training for a few weeks.  Won't hurt at all to push it a bit as I go through what my program is now calling 'IRONMAN specific' training??  What the heck have I been doing so far?  I got all sorts of chores done around the house and seem to have a good list for the rest of the week.  I also got in a great swim this afternoon.
As I have gone through the training it is incredible the changes that take place.  Each time I am out swimming it seems to get more relaxing.  I talked about a girl that I met at the pool last week who was once a competitive swimmer.  I asked her what she thinks about when she is in the water.  She said her number one idea?!  I was swimming downhill as I was told in the book I followed.  Today I focused on looking at about 3-4pm rather than 6pm while I am swimming.  HOLY SMOKES!  It made a difference!  I have been having the toughest time bilateral breathing, but today with my head up slightly is seems a lot easier.  As well it makes sighting an easier chore as well, I don't feel that I am jumping out of the water to see where I am going.  As I swim along it allows me to reach better and feel like I am sliding through the water smoother than earlier.  Thank you Laura(or is it Lisa) , whichever it is, she was a the pool today.  Last week I tried to draft her and she smoked me, No not today, I was able to hold onto her heels almost the entire way!  It was another great breakthrough.(I hope it just isn't a fluke energy burst)
Overall the 3500m was an easy swim, I felt relaxed and calm in the water.  I am going to get out and do an OWS this week prior to a sprint this coming weekend.  I want to make sure that my nerves are calm and that I am comfy in my wetsuit.
 Until then and until tomorrow thank you all for your support and your read!
Life is GOOD and getting better!

An exciting few days! And RIDE to CONQUER report

ONce in a  while time gets away with you, that has been the case in teh past few days.  And I have a lot of time to work with right now!
I will start my ramblings with what some might consider the biggest event of the last few days.  Last Thursday, I became the latest victim to the economy.  Yep, the old dear John talk, we don't want to do this but corporate has given direction, blah, blah, blah!  I won't go into the details a bunch but to say, they got rid of the wrong guy!  I have so much business that I was sandbaggin as I was about to have my commission pay strtuctuir kick in.  Oh well, I have a lot of friends in the business that probably can write those orders. 
Although it is never a good day when you lose your job, I truly beleive that things happen for a reason.  OUt of this event will come something that will allow me to grow and prosper.  It is crazy that at my age I am going to likely make a complete industry carreer focus, but I have been at 2 companies in the same industry that have both ended in hte same result.  let's just say, once bittten twice shy!  Great things will come of this event!Now that being said, the timing could not have been better.  With an IRONMAN coming up and all, it leaves me a littel extra time to spend on training.  I won't change the plan that I am on as it is wokring right now, but I can change the time of day that I am executing and put some ficus on many other things that I have wanted to address.  Sicne my last post, training went down then back up!  Last Thursday I took as my off day as I take advantage of my off day most weeks.  Friday I did an easy 10k run.  It is the first time this summer that I have doen a run in the trails. I must say it is a refreshing area to run in and the change in scenery makes it go by really quick.  My run on Friday was also done without any electronics on me, I did it as a perceived effort kind of run so that I would stay slower rather than faster.  It was great, my paec did not change from any other day, I obviously don't know my HR as I was without the tolls but from a perceived level it was relaxed!
Saturday was my 'training' day for the season so far!  It was the first of 2 x 100 mile rides for the Ride to Conquer Cancer with my team.  As a team we have 2 levels of riders, those who were out for teh ride to support the cause and those who were supporting the cause and like to go a little quicker.  This year I was in the litle quicker category.  THe weather for teh ride was perfect, anovercast day temperature of about 20 celcius and not a lot of wind.  There were 4000 riders out on the ride with about 800 doing hte 100 mile rides rather than the 100k.  As the ride started I realized that my front wheel was a little loose, sdo I puulled off to the side to address the technical issue rather quickly.  When I did pull off I lost my riding partner and was never able to find him again.  As I got back on my bike I rode past 100's of riders searching for him in hopes that we could do the ride,  I pushed hard as I though he might have been out front.  To no success at all, I kept catching up to groups and he was no where among them.  After about 1 hour I figured I could wait not knowing where he was or I could push on.  He is a good pal and would understand so I pushed on.  MYgoal for the day was to treat this as a serious training ride in order to work on nutrition and transition.  So, I put my head down and started pedalling.  I set my GARMIN to not show me my speed as I tend to get into a groove and focus on it to much.  SO I set my HR and time and rolled along. As the morning went by I rolled up to new groups thinking that I could ride for a hwile with them.  I guess I had my mojo because I could not wait to push forward.  After a couple of hours Icaught up to 4 guys and a motorbike escort.  They were rolling along fairly well and seemed to be sticking together.  I stuck with them for a while and learned that they were the front of the ride.  As it was a charity event and I had nothing to do nut take in training miles I joined up with the lead guy and we pedalled along.  Before long the guys with us has all dropped and we were ricing solo with the lead motor bike.  It was kind of cool, I am a middle of hte pack guy, being up front is a different place to be.  As we rode by rest stops, they were brief with water, Gatorade a banana or two for the back pocket and go.  We did the same at a lunch.  They had nuts, fruit and some other small stuff whcih we took rather than the sandwich choice.  We mototored on!  At about 130km's, Patick who I was riding with suggested I needed to pull or he would not maintain the pace.  I happily obliged as that is where I need to be, out with the wind in my face like it will be on IM day.  We moved along slowing slightly along the rather hilly course.  There were very little flats all day long, no killer hills but a lot of rolling.  At exactly 5 hours and 163k on my GARMIN we rolled across the end of the ride with our motorbike escort!  HOW COOL! 
My nutrition strategy worked aweome!  I drank water at amx 15 minute intervals, POWERGEL on about 30-40 minutes and electrolytes every 15-20.  My electrolyte mix worked great.  One can of coconut water, one scoop of Amino Vital endurance, 3 salt tabs and fill with water.  At no time following the schedule was I bonking or feeling hungry.  I got off the bike and did a 15 minute run at under 5 min/k, for me that is fast.  I would slow down and then speed up again.  My HR for the ride was 155(little high) but great considering a relative comparision.  My training pal Hugh had a day plagged with technical issues.  His wheel came off the bike flatting his tire, then another falt when he got going again.  Then the nerves of a tough ride, it was not his day but he finished it for a end of day beer.
Sunday Hugh was going to do the 100k ride???  I busted him repeatedly for dropping down saying it will do him no good to be defeated by hte day before and to put on his big boy shorts and get at it.  I promised him not to take off under any circumstance.  The ride was a wet one!  From the time we rolled out hit was sprinkling as we ride along.  It kept sprinkling unitl close tothe 100k mark.  Luckily not enough to make it a bad ride enough to make it wet!  OUr pace was a little slower tha Saturday as we wanted to get a good ride in for Hugh with no interuptions.  It was a great ride for him to learn about nutrition(as he sucks at it) I would bust him every time I drank to make sure he was as well.  Interstingly, my focus was not as good as Satruday on my nutritoin.  I let my electrolytes slide and could I ever tell.   After the 100km mark I had to pee about every 20-30 minutes, I kept hydrating but it was going though me.  It was an awesome lesson to learn in a grear ide environment.  We did ride with a group for a short while and I picked up the pace with HUgh and the others.  At one point a few guys passed us and we tucked in behind for the ride, after 5 or so minutes they pulled out to let me lead.    I picked upthe lead and held it for another 10-15 until it was time for fuel.  At that point it seemd to have charged me so I kept my head down and rode at 35kmh for another 10-15k to the lunch stop.   It is a samll community, at lucnh I started tallking to the guys and one of them is TRAINING PAYNE's friend Rodney who he rides with and others were athletes doing IM Wisconsin. After lunch the rain finally quit, we were able to ride the rest of the day in decent weather and ifnally dry out.  We had an overall great ride again for day 2, our pace was 30.6kmh for the day with no bonking and no real issues. 
 The weekend was a great success with 320k of riding in 11 hours, no injuries and a cause that I will support as long as I live!  Thank you to all who supported my ride fundraising and I wil be back to ask you again next year! 

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

What to do next.....??

ANother great day on the pool deck and in the water!  Today was a 3500m swim with a few repeats at a light intensity.  Overall it was a great swim.
In the past when I would get towards the end of a longer practice, my HR would go up, my form would collapse and it became a bit of an effort in finishing it. It was all done without much form or finesse. Today I can claim to have maintained some form towards the end of the practice, finesse, that will have to wait a while. After all I am swimming not trying to do a water ballet act!  The pool today was awesome, the entire practice I share the lane with my training buddy with no one else in there to break a rhythm up.
Half way through practice today, Laura who I met on Monday joined our lane for a few lengths.  She is new to tri and is going to do her first sprint later this summer.  She decided to do it as she said it seems like the thing to do.  She was a competitive swimmer and has run some 1/2 marathons.  She got a bike this year, all the dots are there so she is connecting them!  As she was swimming I noticed that she is lightning fast, so I thought I might see if I could draft her for a few lengths.   Not a chance!  Within one length she has 2-3m on me, by the end of the 3rd she was probably 10m away.  When we stopped I told what i was doing and she laughed.  She was a sprint competitive swimmer, so a 200m is where she shines, goes like mad and then it is done.  It was a good exercise to do, a little humbling though.  She said that she could not get in the water and stick it out for 2500m as a straight swim.  Thanks, she was just trying to save me from total embarrassment.   Even with getting mu butt kicked, it was an awesome swim, the effort felt smooth and quiet.  I commented that all the training seems to be helping out a bit a this point!
As the weekend of my recovery week is half done, I am trying to strategize what to do next??  Please forward any advice that you might feel is good.  This week should be easy  as the load starts to get a little tougher next week and moving ahead.  However, this Saturday is the Ride for Cancer and I am doing a 160km ride 2 days in a row.  A total of 320k for the weekend with the T-runs added in for good measure.  Do I ramp down my run workout tomorrow and use the recovery time?  Or do I just do what it says and suck up the extra 7-8 hours on the bike and do all my training as scheduled next week?  As I head into the more intense training I don't want to do it tired.  I will likely tone down my run workout tomorrow a bit and then do a short swim(OWS) on Friday.  I will have some bonus miles on the weekend and still cover my long run distance as part of my T-run.  Afterall, the ride is meant to be done at an easy pace, so it can't do anything but add to the god in the long run!
I hope your training week has been awesome!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The last 5 days of my life has been a race report!

Yep, this post is a report of the last 5 days of running around like a mad man and all the great things that happened along the way!
Friday:  Usually rest day, not this week.  I did my long run today instead of on Sunday so that I could prepare for the weekend(more on that later)  This long run was far, far better than what I had brutally endured the prior week.  This time, I practiced what I preach each day and  got ready the smart way!  Over the week my nutrition was good, my water intake was great!  So the 20k run in 145 at a 143HR was a breeze.  It was an awesome day out and I felt easy doing this run the whole time.  Along my run was a few hills where I slowed down in order to keep my HR from going up, I found that I did not have to slow down a lot to successfully manage it.  Overall it was a great long run and knocked the prior week's effort out of the park!  I guess if you eat and drink activity is a little easier!
SATURDAY:  It's show time!!  For the last 8 years we have hosted a party for all of our neighbours, their kids, dog and family friends.  It is a great backyard BBQ with a live band, lots of kids and lots of fun!  We always host it to benefit a charity of some kind, this year it was the Ride to Conquer Cancer.  We look forward to this party like it is for ourselves.  It is such a great time having all of our friends join us and enjoy a great day together.  Mother Nature was absolute darling with bright sunshine all day,. holding off the rain until only the hardcore remained late in teh evening.  The day was awesome all around!  The fund raising effort was the icing on the cake, my team, TEAM OUTWARD BOUND which is myself and 4 other team mates raised more than $32000 for the ride this year.  It does not bring back the friends and family that we are doing the ride for, but it hopefully provides some help and hope for the future generations!  Thank you to all those who supported my ride!  A couple of fellow triatheltes also joined for the endurance part of the party event!  TRAININGPAYNE  and Doru(Steve) were in for the long haul.  Like any IRONMAN, they stuck it out until the race was done.  We hydrated, we ate, we strategized on our next move, and I would say we won!  We lasted until some had to get home for events, others had to get home because they thought they were going to do events!  Overall our 9th annual event was awesome!  Yes, it is the 8th year but 9th annual(we did 2 one year because we have so much fun)
SUNDAY:  Well, let's just say I was moving slowly.  The mess got cleaned up and that was about the extent of the activity.  Won't elaborate a lot on that.  I will say that it has been a long while since I had that many beers, and a few more weeks will pass before I do again.  But damn, I had some belly laughs on Saturday making it all worth it!
MONDAY:  It is recovery week, once again I don't know what that means as most of the workouts are no different than any other week.  The swim on Monday was awesome.  There were all sorts of drill repeats, most of them longer than the past.  Rather than doing 50m repeats of a drill now they are getting to the 200-300m per with several of each.  The entire swim was a pleasure to do, i was able to maintain form and to keep technically strong throughout.  In total it was a 3400m practice and I loved every minute of it.
TODAY:  I had a great ride!  It seems one day of extra rest gave me a little more gas on my legs!  I did a short bike of 30k at 33kmh average!  I felt strong for the entire ride and was able to knock the finishing hill on its backside!  Then the T-run was as good an event as the ride!  I got off the bike and got my shoes on in a quick transition.  As soon as I hit the bricks I was running at a comfortable stride and without any lead from the bike.  It amazes me how good I am feeling off the bike, last year it would take me 2k to get my butt moving properly!  This weekend I will test it when I do a T-run after a 160k ride 2 days in a row!  Hopefully I am still feeling as good as I did today!
The rest of my recovery week is going to be interesting, with a double century this weekend I dont want to push too hard.  But I also want to use the time as wisely as I can!
Loving the start of the 2nd half of my training adventure!  I hope your journey is the same awesome trip that mine is!  Wahoo!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Holy Crap! it is less than 100 days!

Holy smokes!  Yep, reality seems to hit you on the side of the head sometimes!  Today was one of those days, not that I have not seen it coming for the past 256 days, it was just one of those surreal reality checks that happen from time to time.  As I wind up the first 50% of my focused training the countdown clock is now under 100 days.  I am now in the growing intensity part of my training and on what I consider to be the homestretch towards the start line.  With the busy summer ahead, the time will blow by and before i know it I will be standing at the edge of Lake Monona waiting for a gun to go off!  Wahoo! So far it has been the time of my life and I don't expect it to be any different over the next 3 months.
As it currently stands the time should fly by, I have an event of some sort every weekend in the month of June and July.  Some are races, others are camps, a couple of volunteer events.  All that being said, training is still priority one on every one of those weekends, I only can do my first IRONMAN once, so the priorities are in place!
Today was a good run day! A short speed workout as well as a LULULEMON run club night.  I chose to go and do my speed work ahead of LULU so that I would be fresh and able to push myself.  It was a good workout, with a 15-20 minute warm up followed by a 3 mile 'time trial'.  That being said it was to be done at a 1/2 marathon pace and not a 10k?  Kind of though to call it time trial and tell you to hold back on a short distance.  I felt comfortable and held a 5 min/k pace for the run in order to follow the guideline set out.  Overall it served as a good benchmark to see how I would feel and what I would have in the tank if I was to keep going.  The season so far has been interesting from a run perspective.  When I started this training, I was a 5:30-5:45 min/k runner.  I would do that kind of run and struggle when I got to the 15-20k mark. I have now been able to bring it down to a half marathon pace of 5 min/k with a 157 HR, therefore a lot more that I could put into it.  I am hungry to be a better/faster runner, but I need to keep it in perspective for this season.  I am training for an IRONMAN not to qualify for Boston.  That being said it is great as I know that I can push myself and get to a qualifying time if I put the miles and the focus on my running.  I digress!
ANother awesome training day, a day of reality!  The start line is not the 365 days away that I was hte minute I registered.  It is a few races and some good training weekends away!
Stay tuned for some fun adventures as this journey continues to evolve!
Thank you for your visits, support and inspiration!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Now that was a swim!

Today's practice was certainly one that took things up a notch.  It was labelled as anaerobic swim workout, and that it was that all the way!   I have done a couple of others labelled the same, but they were a bit of a stroll in the park compared to this.
The total swim was 3700m with 2000 of the practice being sprints.  It had an easy warm up focused on technique and kicking and then into the good stuff.
8x 100 at 85% effort with 15s rest  HR3
8 x 100 at 90% effort with 10s rest  high HR3
4 x 100 at 95% effort with 5s rest HR4
So, the first 8 were a cake walk, I felt strong as I swam without compromising technique.  The 15s rest was a great rest and I was able to get at it no problem.
The next 8 were 50% good!  The first 4 repeats were strong and then it started to get a little tougher.  I focused on trying to keep form and was able for the most part to hold it together fairly decently.  As soon as I started to falter I refocused and got it back on track.  The last 4 of the  set were tough with 4 more gruelling ones to come.  I managed to keep pace throughout the whole thing and not slow down because of cardio.
The last 4 were nasty!  I timed the 2nd of the repeats to see if I was able to hold it together after 17 hard repeats getting harder each time with shorter recovery.  I managed a 1:40 with a good struggle, I had to push myself to get it done and was sucking wind when I got to the end.  But, I got it done!  
I have to say I enjoyed the cool down part of this workout. But as hard as it was, it was likely one of the best workouts that I have had!  I have not looked forward at my workouts to see when I get to do another like it, it was not the kind that you want to look forward to!
Awesome workout day and another day of Living the Dream!  Cheers!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

OK, that's better!

Today was a great day all around!  Got a ton done at the office, got some house keeping items off the list and scored another great training day!  I wont bore you with the work stuff, this is about being an IRONMAN and the fun parts of the journey!  Oh yeah, and I did it right, I had some water and some proper food and felt like a champ along the road today!
Today as most Tuesday's is a sprint type workout on the bike, it is meant to be done on a trainer.  When the weather is 25+ degrees, improvisation is key.  There is no way that I am riding indoors on day like today.  SO I studied my workout and took it on the road.  It worked out well for me.  I ended up at the office late so getting the workout done would have been a time crunch.  As well as my Tuesday ride which I have not missed yet, I have my Tuesday run with the LULULEMON store.  So, with my improvised bike workout I figured I could ride to the store, and do a T-run with the group.  What a great workout it was!
My ride to the store was perfect to get me in the zone that I was aiming for as well as hte sprints that were in the ride.  The T-run was a great 7k run at a decent pace(not fast, but that is not the purpose)  The ride home was the icing on the cake for a great workout, with a fast downhill bias ride with my legs warm and turning well!
Th LULU run was great from an attendance perspective.  All the people coming out right now are working towards a goal and taking the advice that I have been talking to them about.  ONe girl has improved her run time by 20 seconds in only a few weeks by introducing and sticking with the ideas that we discussed.  She is quote modest about her progress, but I can see the changes.  ANother girl has asked for some help training for a 1/2 marathon this summer with a goal of 1:40.  It is a lot of fun as people are evolving as runners and wanting to push goals. It is so cool to be a part of that process.
I signed up for a couple of sprint events today over the course of the next 2 months, this week I will register for a 1/2 IM distance race in early August.  Hitting send with my registration seemed to bring a little more reality to the training that I am doing! it is exciting!
I hope you had an awesome training day and feel pumped about your progress!  It is all about Living the Dream!  Cheers