Friday, September 24, 2010

092310 and 092410

Goals- 09/23/10 Swim and Hill ride, 092410 AM swim and ride/run brick

Results- check

Diet setbacks- Although I had pizza for dinner tonight, I am not chalking it up as a set back, too much working out.

Thoughts: Yesterday the schedule called for a 600m swim (2x250) in the morning. I thought it might be a little better if I get rest and make it a swim ride brick. After work I accomplished just that. Instead of swimming the 2x250 I swam a 750 very slow concentrating on a form. I think there are two things that could make me faster in the water, better form and faster turnover of my arms. I did four repeats of a half mile, 8% grade hill. I used a technique I read in a Carmichael book. On each repeat I used a harder gear. Oddly, each repeat got faster. It hurt but it felt good, if you know what I mean. Ended the day with another cold shower and slept in the recovery tights.

Today I woke up with the least leg pain I have had all week, but I still decided to put off the swim until afternoon. I thought I might see if I can get off a little bit before lunch and come home to workout and rest. I was able to get off after lunch and I took a three hour nap. It was everything I thought it would be. I got up and swam a 300m stroke drill warm up, 6x50 and 2x100. The splits were the worst ever, every one of the 50m were over 1:05. They are usually around 0:55. Oh well!!

I took another hour nap and then hit my brick. I set up my transition and practiced T1. Just under a minute (only ran about 50 feet to my bike). As always with my brick I rode my local triathlon loop. It did not feel very good, especially when I realized I forgot water. I looked at the garmin at the halfway point and I was making good time, good enough to finish in around 30 minutes. However, I did not finish in 30 minutes. The last 3 miles are up hill, up to a 12% climb, but I was able to average a 10mph on most of the climbs and finish in 41:28.  4:20 faster then my PR on this route! I laughed at one point about how much swerving I was doing during a climb, I thought about how MattyO would be cussing me if he was behind me in a race trying to pass me like the speeding tank he is.

Got back to the house for T2, I was kinda light headed and as I dismounted I did not clear the bike with my right leg and the bike made a fall ( I landed on my feet). Oh well! This paired nicely with something I forgot from earlier- As I was mounted the bike after running it down the road I miss shot and when I flying squirrelled I got a prostate exam from the tip of the saddle- OUCH!! Including tripping running up the driveway I was able to get changed out in 0:20. NICE!

Took off for the run and was able to get up to a sub 9:00 mile. Until I hit the hills then I slowed down to a 10. The goal for today was to run 2 miles at 100% effort under 20 minutes and then jog the last 1.1. Finished the 2 miles in 19:00. I was able to run most of the flats 8:35 or better, only slowed by the hills.

That was a total of 14.5 miles for the day and  I am counting toward Big Clyde weekend challenge..I bid 30 miles for myself

This brick was exhausting and intense, as evident by my bloody right nipple, but it felt great. I still wish I could cycle faster. I have thought a lot about how I think I may to be a point where my bike is holding me back. I know it's not the machine, its the engine; however, I am riding a 24yr old, steel framed bike geared with a 11-25 7 speed freewheel. It is heavy and I don't think it is geared the best for the terrain here. But it is what I have.

This weekend I will be teaching a search and rescue (NC Surface Water Rescue Technician) course close to home. Even with the teaching I am able to sleep in a little to get some extra rest in the morning and am hoping to make a detour and ride the course for my next race. In a perfect world I will ride it both days this weekend to get a feel for it.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Clarity Defog It Review

About a month ago I received samples of Clarity Defog It to review. Here goes.

Why Defog It: Before I get into more about the product I want to discuss why I wanted to try it. It has earned the National Tactical Officers Association's seal of approval. If it has been tested and the NTOA backs it for use on my ballistic glasses while fighting prison escapees and backs it in my gas mask when I am  fighting in riots then I want to try it in triathlon.

My glasses often fog during runs and bike rides when I start breathing heavy, particularly on hills, and of course my goggles fog in the pool. Why not try a new anti-fog product.

About Defog It: Defog It comes in two versions. Wet, a liquid that comes with a small cloth for buffing; and, Dry, an individually wrapped towelette. The company states that it works due to "The proprietary surfactants contained in the formulation form a hydrophilic (water absorbing) layer on the surface of the lens that helps water/fog to sheet evenly and hence improve visibility." They also state that it works in one application and is safe and effective on all lens types.

My Thoughts: When I initially received the product I was impressed by how small both products are. The other two anti-fog products I have used are much larger. Both Wet and Dry fit easily in jersey pocket or transition bag. The dry comes in a plastic case, but also in a foil package. You can carry all three or just one. They company claims that even after using the dry wipe you can put it back in the package and use it again later. I was only able to get two or three uses before it dried out. I tried both product with swim, bike and run. I found the easiest to use was the dry. Just wipe it down and it's done. Although the directions state to start with a clean lens, I also found these were great for cleaning the lenses.

Cleaning glasses is easy. The real test to me was anti-fog for my goggles. I tried the Dry first since it was easiest to use. It worked but started to fog by the end of a mile swim, after I had taken the goggles off a few times. I tried the Wet and it has worked without issue for for over a month now. I have pushed off writing this review because I wanted to see how long it would take for it to start fogging, no luck yet. I would like to try it on my SCUBA mask next time I dive.

Pros: Both are small. Dry can be carried in your pocket any day without the possibility of a mess. Dry is very easy to use.  Wet is VERY long lasting. Both are very affordable, compared to my other anti-fog gels and sprays.

Cons: I would prefer more uses out of the Dry wipes since only three come in a container, more bang for the buck. Although the Wet works very well, small goggles are more difficult to use it on since yo must buff it off with the cloth. This takes a few tries to make sure you buff it all.

Clarity Defog It products and more information including case studies can be found at their website.

Note: The product was provided to me free of charge but all opinions are my own.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Today was another off day. My training schedule called for a 40 minute tempo run. With my swim speed bothering me, I decided to start the extra swim sessions I was planning to add next week today. So I completed 4x50 and 2x100 for time. Normal times, not impressive. Afterwards was a my tempo run. It was rough. I started slow, eventually got to my tempo, but I couldn't keep it. Ended up the run with an average speed 45s slower than what it should have been. This run was tough. The positive thing about it is tough as it may be, and even if I am not happy with my performance, I am happy with why it is tough. It is tough because I have been working hard. Pushing myself hard is a good reason to not be at an optimal level. 

Since I can't take an ice bath, I use a cold shower technique I read in Triathlete, after the workouts. Cheated a little bit on the diet today because it was employee appreciation day and members of the community brought us honey buns and hot dogs (clearly prisons are full of health issues when they know that's what makes us happy). I think I am working hard enough to justify it. We will see tomorrow morning when I hit the scale.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Goal: Am run and swim, PM run

Results: PM 3 mile run and 600m swim

Diet setbacks: 5 semi-small slices of pizza

This is one of the most interesting days  I have had since I started training. Before going into it, I am going to rewind back to yesterday afternoon. Today at work we had a safety inspection and I run one of the two most important programs for the institution so I was asked to get in early to make sure all the T's were crossed and I's were dotted. I was asked this after I had already decided to make up yesterdays run by putting it before my am swim. So I set out my work clothes and work out clothes so that I could have fast transition and leave at least an hour early for work.

I woke up at 0430 and shuffled through the dark to my clothes. I got outside and my garmin would not power on. I tried several time with no luck. I know where three miles is so I gave up with the gps. This was to be an easy three miles. Just log some miles. I took the first three steps and everything was sore. I took the next three and every muscle below the waste started to cramp. This was my sign to wave off the run and get more rest.

I laid down and played with the gps for a little while with no luck. When it was time to get up, my legs were still sore (not cramped) so I began thinking about how to recover at work. I read articles and have heard everyone talk about compression sock, sleeves, and tights for recovery. I remembered I bought a pair of under armour compression tights for my 5k race, last new years. This may be weird, but I figured I could try the tights under my clothes at work, since this was my best option next to staying how and resting for the day.

They were very comfortable and I feel like they helped. Although it may just be a mental thing. After work I went out for that run. My training plan called for a 3 mile run, I ran the first 2 at my easy pace (per the McMillan calculator as adjusted from my race this weekend). The first mile was tough but not too hard, the second wasn't easy but I fell into my groove. I ran most of the 3rd mile at my recovery pace. About three quarters of a mile from the house another runner passed my going down the road. Once he got about 300m ahead of me, I felt suddenly compelled to practice taking down another runner. I picked up my pace to about 7:33 and made it to about 75 feet from him. At that point I could not push faster or even keep that pace. I had to fall back to my recovery pace. I finished the run and am glad I got it in.

Walked int he house grabbed my goggles and towel and walked down to the Y. Swam 100m warm up with drills and 2x250. Splits were 6:32 and 6:39. I was disappointed about my time particularly on the second one because I pushed that one a lot harder. I am obviously making gains on my run, but feel like very little change on my bike and swim. I actually feel like I have made no improvements on the swim in months. Bike feels better, but my goals is to be able to maintain a 20mph pace or better for 30 minutes. I may be able to get that on flat roads, but we don't have any of those here. My next race is 10 miles on the bike and the top finishers from the last two years were around 30 minutes for the clydesdales. To be competitive I need to be in that area, not in the 45 minute area I am in. The tops swimmer were in 3 minute areas and there is no chance I will cut my time in half for my next race. Maybe I can get it better in the off season.

I think this is one of my fatal flaws. Anytime I identify a weakness I do research on how to fix it, but every time I find workouts to fix it this requires having to alter an existing training calender. As much as I don't want to, I think I need to be content with my fitness levels and face the fact that my last race may not be any better then my last and it is too late to make major improvements. JUST BE HAPPY!

Monday, September 20, 2010

091910 and 092010

Goals: Sun-6 mile LSD run. Mon- 3 mile run, long ride

Sunday was a reward day to myself. I woke up sore legs so I decided to to put off my long run for a while. We ate fast food for every meal. Not worried about diet today. I am truly on a high. Although I was several minutes behind the 1st place person in my age group yesterday, placing felt very rewarding. It felt like my hard work and hours of training have been worth it. Meeting my goal is worth celebrating, but today was not without work. After church but before lunch I bagged my 6 mile long run. Since I went hard yesterday I wanted to take it extra easy today. I wanted the average pace to by over 13 minutes. This was even slow for me, but I must admit the 3rd mile was hard even at this pace.

No more slacking, back to training today. Unfortunately, I woke up with my legs hurting even more than they did yesterday. Swim cancelled for this day, reserve legs for ride this evening. Healthy eating all day and made it to my group ride. Only 3 of us today, either they slowed down for me or I am making gains. I stayed on the back tire of the other guys the entire time. They said it was the fastest the group has ever ridden that loop. My Garmin said average speed of 12.4 but the other guys had 15. I think mine calculated the laps in the parking lot I was making to warm up and practice making U-turns.

This has been a great few days. Sometimes my training feels like work, but every bit of it is has been enjoyable for the past three days. I know I am way to happy when I have been researching marathons and ultra marathons. I even found a neat running club I want to join. You have to run 15 miles to join. You get a t-shirt and to be a life member. Some of there ultra's are nuts (more nuts than your average ultra), but I'd like to be fit enough to give a try ONE DAY.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Tarheel Realty 5k

About the race: This race is a local race in Iredell County, NC. it was put together to benefit the local school system. 50% of all money goes to the school with the most participants registered. 30% to the 2nd and 20% to 3rd. A good cause in general, but even better when you consider CB is a teacher at one of those schools.

Night before the race: In the future remind me not to start googling race strategy the night before a race, good way to psych myself out.

Pre-race: Up with time to spare, quick shower, half a bagel with peanut butter and honey, and dressed in time to leave and put in a mile or so warm up. Instead of a leaving I sat for another 25 minutes and waited on CB to get ready. Her and a group of teachers were walking the race. Once we were there I went for a quick jog and got to the line up 2 minuted before the start.


Mile 1: Started out strong. A few minutes in I was passing a group of girls when one looked to the other and said "you have the fancy watch, whats our pace?" The one with the watch looked at her friend and said "7:33, we need to slow down, majorly". I needed to do the same. I slowed down to about an 8:37 mile (still faster than my plan). My fasted mile ever.

Mile 2: Took the first hill. Made it to the turn around and aid station, took one sip of water, but I didn't want to slow down so I splashed the rest on myself. 8:29. My fastest mile ever!  During this time I found an older guy with a nice pace and stuck to his back.

Mile 3+: Started out solid, but toward the middle I felt myself slipping. I watched my pace and that guy and pushed to keep up. Had to dig deep on the the next to last hill. My plan was to sprint the last .25 but I didn't have it in me. I decided to keep my pace and just finish. There was a girl who had stuck to my shoulder for the last mile and at about 50m there was a crowd of finishers that had started yelling for her to sprint it in. When she took off so did I. Finished this lap in 8:26. New fastest mile ever!

Post Race: I got done with a heart rate of over 195 and as soon as I started walking to cool down the dry heaving started. I know I pushed hard when I yack. Luckily I had burned off my fuel so there was nothing to yack. Cooled down and walked back to support others. Mom in law finished in 39:46. CB and friends in 44:55 and lil sis in law Gracie just before that. When it was all said and done, I had a lot of thoughts about how to do things better and how I did but I am going to just let them go and be happy with how I did.


Oh wait, do you want to know how I did?

My goal for 2010 was to complete a 5k race in under 30 minutes. My first ever 5k in January was 33+.

Even though this was my official goal, the goal I secretly was hoping to get was sub 28:00.








091610 and 091710

Goal: Thursday- AM Speedwork run and PM Hill Ride. Friday- 600m swim.

Results: We'll get to that.

Diet setbacks: Nothing positive Thursday, Nothing bad Friday.

Thoughts: My plans for Thursday were foiled completely. The previous three day's training left me mentally drained and I needed to sleep. I thought I would just move my run to the evening and just space it a few hours from my ride. Unfortunately, some family stuff came up and I ended up with no workouts and eating pizza.

Friday was the exact opposite. I was off work because I was having to come in Saturday. I started the day with a healthy breakfast and went to mowing the lawn. 3.5 hours, record time for my lawn which involves 2.5 miles of pushing a mower. I took several breaks to rehydrate and graze on healthy snacks.

When I got done, I drove out to the location of Saturday's race for an easy spin and scouting of the race course. It was advertised as flat. It was not. No HUGE hills but not flat. VERY easy spin for 4 miles in 14 minutes.

I headed directly to the pool for a swim. 600m with 2x250. The splits were 5:35 and 6:17. I swam much faster on the second one which makes me think I shorted the a lap on the first one. I took the first one very slow, on purpose, but according to the timer it was faster?

My only concern at this point is that I hope I did not over due it, I tried to take everything easy.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Goal: BRICK!!!! with 3 mile run/jog- first 1.5m @ 5k pace

Results: 11 miles in 45:48, 1.5 miles in 14:03 (9:22 pace)

Diet setbacks: 2 cans of Pepsi.

Thoughts: This has been sort of a long week so far, and I am glad it is this far gone. For the last three days I have been in training learning how to use the NC criminal information software and the FBI NCIC programs. By the way for three days we learned how to use software without ever touching a computer. Luckily, today we got out early which gave me plenty of time for my workout.

I rode the local tri loop and completed it in 45:48. I think this is a new record for me, I can't figure out how to track the course record on Garmin training center because I can't make a multi sport lap into a course. I set up my transition area and took 59 seconds. I had an issues I had never had before. As I come in I always loosen my bike shoes, but today as a started to jump off the bike the force flipped the Velcro back in place on my left foot. I jumped off the bike and ended up with one shoe on the bike and one still on my foot. This completely threw off my run to my transition area and on top of it I had to stop to get the shoe off. Still not a bad time and I'd rather have problems happen at home instead of a race.

Once I transitioned I went for my run and finished in the first 1.5 mile in 14:03. It was 12 seconds slower than my last 1 mile brick pace, but today I worker harder on the bike. Cut my time down there but added time on the run. That pace would still lead to a sub 30 time and that's my 5k goals in general. getting it coming off the bike would make it even better. One thing I noticed was that for some reason my shoes felt more comfortable running off the bike than my old shoes did. This was made even better by the fact that I have been feeling like they are not as comfortable as my old shoes. Finally something positive I have been able to say about the new shoes.

Lastly, registered for a 5k this weekend. Can't wait to see my goal time and knock something else off my list for the year.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Goal: AM Swim, PM Run, eat healthy

Results: PM Run and Swim

Diet Setbacks: not sure, guess the scale will let me know in the morning.

I was up late last night thinking about triathlon. Many things on my mind about it. I love the sport and I love seeing the responses from my body such as weight loss, strength gains, and PR in 3 different sports. However, the downside of giving me so much to think about brings up a topic I have never talked about here.

I have a problem. I often am sleep deprived because of my problem. I do not have the ability to turn my brain off. Does that sound weird? Yes, well it's true. Often I can not fall asleep because too many things are going through my mind. It varies from time to time, sometimes I am making to do lists or I want lists, other times questions are coming to my head about how do to something or something that I want to learn about.

Lately, many nights are spent thinking about things to tweak on my bike, or about my training plan for the week, or about race planning, or many other things. Last night's thoughts were in the realm of my race schedule for next schedule. I have planned a 70.3 race to end my season next November (in error in a post a few months back I called it a Half Ironman, I had yet to realize that is trademarked). However, reading everyone's race reports for the last few months makes me want to do a REAL WTC 70.3 race. Maybe not next season but eventually. I also have put doing a full WTC Ironman on my bucket list. Not my race bucket list, my real bucket list.

Completing my half century showed my that I can ride that long, which made me think about how it's only 6 miles short of the 70.3 distance. I decided to look at times of completers. I picked Ironman 70.3 Florida, it struck me that it should be relatively flat and therefore the best for me to compare to. The most recent I could find for Clydesdales was the 2008 race. I started thinking about my times and comparing them to the last place Clydesdale. ***please note from here on I am using times for conjecture, I am NOT belittling someone else's time. I realized the times are part of a much longer race while I have only done standalone event. much love to anyone who completes any ironman event!!***I completed my half century in 3:49. The last place finisher completed in 56 miles in 3:52. I think that even after swimming I could manage that time on a course flatter than what I rode. The same person did his 13.1 run in 3:29. Even though I don't run that distance, my training runs are at a pace almost an hour faster. It made me think that if that person can do it so can I.

Now I am thinking when should I tri it? My brain tells me stick to my existing calender for next year to improve my skills (and maybe get a new bike) and do an IRONMAN 70.3 the next year.

Anyhow, after much thinking and researching last night I slept through my alarm this morning. CB turned it off and then gave me a little more sleep time. I got up early but not with enough time to make my run. After work I got in a recovery run and then swim. I set my garmin for a pace alert at 12:10 for the high speed. I often push too fast with these runs but after all the riding the last two days I needed this to be slow. I trudged along at 13 minute miles. It was tough on the hill, much tougher but usual but I needed this slow run. I was aiming for 3 miles, but the loop I ran turned out to only be 2.25 so I settled for it. After words I cooled off with 600m in the pool. 100m warm up and 5x100m for time. However, I still haven't looked at my splits. I think soon I am going to start tracking these splits on a spreadsheet so I can see if I am making any progress.

Another thing I have been thinking about is my off season. I look forward to working on my run until the my half marathon and then hopefully getting a hold of a trainer and spinervals as well as a adult swim classes. I also plan to get back to the weights and make my strength training goals before the end of year.

Monday, September 13, 2010


Goal: long ride, eat healthy

Results: 16.23 miles in 60 minutes.

Diet setbacks: 4 pieces of chocolate and a small frozen coke.

Thoughts: Monday mean group ride. With my last two group rides I have done well at not getting left so today I thought instead of trying to catch the fast group like last time, I would stick to the back and have an easy spin to recover from yesterday. This may have been the worst ride ever. I was not ready. I got left on every climb and a few times I wondered how the others manage to COAST down hill so fast (coast, not pedal) because I got left twice on downhills. I thought everything would go fine as I managed the first two climbs faster than usual.

The climbs hurt, but the worst thing is that my butt is still sore. A lot more sore than I remember it being yesterday. *note to self- find better saddle, preferable one shorter on the front end.

The group waited for me at one stop sign and I apologized for taking so long. they asked if I was ok and I explained about being more tired that I realized because of yesterday. They all told me they were amazed I was even riding today.

I rushed out to the door and completely forgot my Garmin, and with the new bars the old bike computer didn't fit. When I returned home I noted the time and it had been 1:07 since the ride started. Considering it took me a few minuted to stretch and get the bike in I estimate the ride was only about 1 hour flat. I mapped the ride and  on and it turns out it was 16.23 miles. This makes the fastest average time I have ever done. Amazing since it seemed like I was going slower than ever.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Half Century Surprise

Goals: 90 minute run.

Results: we'll get to that.

Diet setbacks: I'm thinking none.

Thoughts: Woke up early today for my long run. I have dialed my long run back to 90 minutes until after race day. I left the house and my first mail was on pace and felt good. After that the run went down hill (figuratively). My pace kept dropping and I felt really slow. Due to not feeling it and the fact that I left the house late, I decided to take it to the house after 60 minutes (just under 4 miles, not even as fast as my LSD pace). I often log miles for the sake of logging them. They are always part of a plan so I bear through them. I often even enjoy them. Today I was not enjoying anything about it. If it ever comes to a point that I do not enjoy the aspects of the sport, I know it will be time for me to find another activity.

Last piece of good news before I get on to my subject, as I got ready for Sunday School this morning I tried on a belt I have had in my drawer since college and it fit. It is a size 36. This time last year my belt was a 42.

Earlier this week I started thinking about doing a charity ride after my next race. I found a Half Century that was being put on. It was to find Juvenile Diabeted Research and offered a 50 mile ride, 25 mile ride, 5k run, and 1 mile walk; it was only 10 minutes away to boot and the 50 mile ride even came through my neighborhood.  I debated all week about doing it and decided late Friday that I was not going to do it. This morning my wife reminded me she was going to be working at the church from 3pm until 7pm today. I figure I need the base mile spinning anyways.

During lunch I finally decide to do it. The ride started at 2pm and I got home at ten till. I filled water bottles and a gel flask, changed and added an allen wrench and baby wipes to my jersey pocket (I already keep tire levers, pumps, and a tube in my pocket on training rides). I knew the ride started at a local school and went to the wrong school, I then realized I didn't know where the other school was. I drove around for a few and and eventually saw runners and followed them back.

By the time I got there, registered, and left I was 45 minutes late. I tried to boogie to make up time and catch the group. I kept a 20mph pace for the first 8 miles. The first aid station was just after mile 10 and I skipped it in an effort to make up time. I downed energy gel every 6 miles.

By the second aid station I was out of water, it was right around mile 25. It was manned by a very sweet woman who was offering to fill all my bottles for me and encouraged me to sit. I filled my own bottles because I knew if I sat I was done. I filled one bottle of Gatorade and one of water, ate half a banana and was off again. She told me the last group left 20 minutes ahead of me.

I tried to boogie to catch them but never did see them. I needed rest by third aid station, I was having two issues. I stopped for refills of my half empty bottles (they only had Gatorade at this station) and ate a whole banana.

Got to the end after 3:49. I was shooting for 3:30 but I'm not going to let bother me because I JUST RODE 50 MILES!!!! This is the farthest I have ever ridden. 20 more that my previous high, just this same week. My average speed was 12.5 miles per hour. There was more climbing that I expected but this average pace is starting to annoy me. I need want very much to faster because this is where I spend the majority of my race, but can not figure out how to get there. Hopefully, this long ride and my long ride to come will help. I leaned two things- remember to use Butt-r because my but hurt like hell by the end and that after going that far my right leg begin hurting (can't define whee in my leg). On top of the pure pleasure of the ride they also gave me a to go box with baked chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans, bread from Outback Steakhouse. AWESOME!

What I wanted most out of this was to build MENTAL STRENGTH to stay on my bike for 50 miles. The hardest thing about this was due to starting so late I never saw another rider. This made it very lonely. country, mountain roads and not a sole. I was very glad to see the volunteer at aid station two because She was the only person I spoke to for the entire trip.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Goals: run/bike brick and separate swim or swim/cycle brick and separate run.

Results: swim/cycle kinda brick, 2 mile run

Diet Setbacks: 2 bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits, fries and two cokes.

Thoughts: Like yesterday, it seems that whenever I am in a funk I seek comfort foods. I did it again this morning, instead of making a healthy breakfast I went out to eat with CB. Just like yesterday when I was exhausted and ate too many hot dogs I often wonder about my connection to food and my mental well being. As far back as  can remember being home sick meant soft drinks and possibly McDonalds. Too this day being depressed is also paired with eating similar food. Hopefully one day I can pair healthy food and comfort foods so that day like today or yesterday a salad will make me feel better.

It was raining here today so I was unsure of how to proceed with attempting my make up workouts. What I wanted to do most off all was a my brick. I decided against this because I didn't want to get too far from the house in the weather (although it wasn't bad).

Instead I made my swim/bike brick. I swam 2x250. I forgot my watch so no split times. I did swim it in compression shirt I am thinking about wearing for my next race. My first 250 was off, but I do not think it had to do with the shirt. My breathing felt funny, it felt like I was swallowing air. My 2nd set was interval was very comfortable.

After the swim I grabbed my bike and not wanting to go far from the house I did some hill work on my road. I have a hill that is an 8% grade and .48 of a mile long. I planned for 5 reps but was on recovery after the third rep when the rain picked up. Decided to wave off the rest and head home. ended up with a total of six miles.

Climbing is still awkward to me, it seems like I almost come to a stand still. I am still trying to figure out the best technique, strategy, and mechanics of climbing, despite the fact I do alot of it. there is no choice around here. I tried to do the last one sprinting out of the saddle but my chain kept slipping. this disturbs me considering I just picked the bike up from a tune up yesterday. I also could feel the sluggishness of having three sodas over the last two days. Does anyone else have foods and that they can almost feel in your system after consuming?

After dinner I went for a run. I planned for 3 miles but due to the unseasonably low temp, the rain, and the time I decided I would only do two miles but I would increase the intensity. I decided to attempt to keep 10k pace or better and run up that same hill that I was using for my workout earlier. I kept my 10k pace but slowed toward the end. I made it to the top and ran back down, for a portion of it I was at a 7:30 mile pace. I ended up running the 2 miles in just over 19 minutes. This makes me happy because it is in line with my sub-30 5k goal and I ran tougher terrain that usual.

While writing this I have also been been looking at tri shorts and a tri top from aevero. The advertise on BT and are offering a free jersey with shorts purchase. $32 total sounds good for an entry level suit but it also bake me wonder about the quality considering both tops I looked at yesterday were more expensive. The shorts are 85% polyester whcih also makes me wonder. Any one ever tried this brand?
Overall, not what I planned for but not to shabby. Need to keep working at the climbing (often wonder if my bike could be geared better for climbing, I have no clue).

090910 and 091010

Goals: 090910 AM 3 mile run, PM 600m swim/90 minute cycle brick. 091010 cycle/run brick.

Results: NADA

Diet setbacks: Not so good......

Thoughts: The last two days have been both exhausting and aggravating. Nothing has gone as planned and my diet had gone to poo.

Yesterday, morning I overslept and missed my run, I thought I might try to make it up in the evening. After sleeping in a packed a light, but healthy day of food including fruits, veggies, and nuts. Not big meal but enough food to graze all day. Once I got to work it was announced that we would behaving a shake down of a housing unit. That is a search if you are not familiar with prison terms. The search would begin after 6 so there went my afternoon workouts and my food was not insufficient or working into the evening. Went to Wendy's and grabbed a hamburger to tide me over in the early afternoon. Left the prison a little after 9, annoyed that my training was blown for the night cause of the DAMN job.

Friday actually started as planned. MY work plan for the day called for a much needed day off site. today was my semi-annual Prison Emergency Response Team Physical Assessment test. Our physical fitness test is very interesting, it test core strength and endurance mostly. The first time I took the test I felt like I was going to puke afterwards, now I don't get that feeling, now I just see it as a challenge. Nerves are also lessened since I am already on the team. I felt bad today because I was actually running it with people who were trying out (I will be away at another training the day our current members are tested). I could see in them myself when I tried out, I honestly feel bad for them.

The test consisted of starting at the back of our team pick up truck and being given an inmate name and a location, then you don a gas mask and run 50 meters, now you grab a 175 pound dummy and drag it 50 feet, then remove the gas mask and drop for 20 push ups followed by 20 sit ups, them you run up a set of 5 stairs and down a set of 5 stars, repeat the stairs 2 more times, then run 1 lap around a quarter mile track, at the end of your lap you must place a person in handcuffs, run to the dummy and drag it another 25 feet, return to the stairs again to repeat the e sets of 5 up 5 down, drop for 20 push ups and 20 sit ups (this last set of sit ups is the hardest for everyone), then run back to the truck and give your inmate name and location. If you have forgotten it or get it wrong run 50 meters down and 50 meters back.

I completed this in 5:15, the same time I always get. I feel like I am in much better shape then I have ever been in while doing this. I feel like I did not have to push as hard to complete and my recovery is almost momentary. About 5 deep breaths and I was good. We had only about half of the people trying out pass and one guy barely made it down the first sprint.

I stuck around and served as a medic while everyone was tested and then assisted in testing the team staff. they tested today too that way they don't have to worry about while testing the rest of the team on their day.

After getting done I got off duty and went to my LBS to check on my bike, I dropped it off monday after my long ride and was told it would be done early in the week before my next scheduled ride. I got there and there was an issue. They told me they would take care of it that afternoon and to come back at 5:30.

To kill some time I headed down the interstate a little to the local Barnes and Noble. I wanted to look for base level triathlon, running, and cycling books.The only books they had were Triathlon 101 and and book in triathlon training plan by the same author (Mora). I chose triathlon 101.

I then went a little further down the interstate to REI to look for a bike mount for the garmin 305. I got distracted looking at the cycling clearance rack and then to the triathlon area. I have been thinking about getting a Tri jersey to cut down on transition time getting my cycling jersey on in T1. I am willing to suck up the fact that I'm a big boy and it's tight, just to be slightly faster. I tried on a Zoot that was on clearance and it was ok except for the neon green color. I also tried on a Sugoi that was not on sale. It was a little longer and was noticeably lighter. The were both larges and not skin tight, they could have been smaller and still fit. How awesome is that?

While in the area  I stopped in another book store. They had many more running books, all their cycling books were about Lance, and they had the same tri book except 1. I decided to stick with my choice but next month I will buy the running book (same book Laura recommended to me last month). I also found another book mixed in the wrong section I though looked interesting.

After leaving the bookstore I headed back to the LBS just 18 mile north. 1 hour 30 minutes later I got there. Second time in two weeks I have sat still for that long on the same interstate. and each time it involved a trip to the shop.

When i got there there was another issue with my bike. I waited in the bike shop for it to be fixed.

By the time they were done, after all the driving, the traffic, that waiting, and all the other stress in the day, I was just not feeling like working out so instead I gorged on hot dogs until I felt sick. I am still stuffed as I type this. Seems like in the last three weeks I have had more over stuffing days than I have had in months.

I need to remember tomorrow is a new day. I look forward to making up my swim and my cycle/run brick. I may even do it all in one just like a race.


Thursday, September 9, 2010

Garmin 310 Giveaway Link

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

090710 and 090810

Goals: 09/07- 600m swim, 2 mile recovery run 09/08-35 minute Tempo Run.

Results: All of the above.

Diet Setbacks: Not as bad as the weekend, but not the best

My boss gave me the day off Tuesday  because he thinks I'm at risk of trying to shoot the office up he wanted me and my partner to take 4 day weekends. I planned Tuesday for an epic day of hiking. I stayed up most of Monday night trying to pick which trails to go visit. I was planing a back country hike either peak bagging, visiting waterfalls, or seeing turn of the century fire watch towers. After much debating and planning, yes I am so structured I fret over my fun times, I decided to not go so back country and take a long hike through a state park to see some overlooks and one waterfall.

However, I overslept and woke up at noon. Too late to take my trip, but enough time to get in my workouts before CB gets home. This way I can have dinner ready for her for a change.

I ran my 2 mile recovery run and then I swam  600m with a warm up and 5x100m. I haven't even looked at my splits yet.

Before bed I reworked my training plan to try to put more time on the bike in. Until my next race I am doing 2 long rides (one as part of a brick) and one hill workout. I am also incorporating the Hal Higdon Intermediate 5k training plan for my runs. I am still 30 minutes short of being proportional to race times. No super long run until after my next race and then I will be on a half marathon plan.

Only negative for the diet was probably too much cheese and crackers (like half a pound of cheese).

Wednesday before work I did my first workout from the Hal Higdon plan- a 35 minute tempo run. It called for a pace equal to my 10k pace. I ran most of it a bit faster, not on purpose, it was just comfortable. I ran the first 3.1 miles in 29 minutes. bad news- the last quarter mile was killing me. Hopefully I will build more endurance for this pace before October. Good news- I made my 5k in under 30 minutes goal. ONE MORE GOAL FOR THE YEAR ACCOMPLISHED.

By the way, the course i ran was the same as the course I did the time trial several months back and didn't quite make it.

Only bad dieting was two pieces of pizza. My team decided to go to a pizza buffet for a morale type lunch. I had two bowls of salad, followed by two slices of pizza. Not too Shabby.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Longest Weekend Ever

Goals: 600m swim, 1100m swim, long run, long ride, eat healthy

Results: Everything but eating healthy.

Diet setbacks: WOW!

Thoughts: After the house work Saturday I drove 15 minutes out of town to a sister YMCA to use their pool. It wasn't open during the week or I would have already done this. I completed a 500m swim with stoke drills, 600m swim with 50m intervals and 45s rest, and 600m mixed with a 250 interval, 100m interval, and some more stroke drills. In total the swim lasted 39:30. Although it was not non-stop this is my longest swim ever and first time I have ever swam over a mile.

I enjoyed this swim a lot. The pool at this Y is very small. It is shaped like a squared u. The long section being three lap lanes. They do not have lap swim on Saturdays so I was already mentally prepared to swim my laps with interruptions from kids. About two minutes after starting, the guards walked over and put lane lines up for me. I never asked. On top of that making it an easier swim, this pool is outside. This is the first time I have ever swam laps outside. This was great and the weather could not have been better. I wish I had made this drive all summer.

To close the day off we went to a cook out. I ate a little more than I should have. Nothing horribly fatty, just a little more food than i should have. I figured this is ok since I had my long run Sunday.

Sunday I woke up early for my long run. The goal was a long, slow run at a 12 minute pace, building my mental and physical endurance. I ended up running it in 12:08 at an 11:44 pace.  MY LONGEST RUN EVER.

I had no pain while I was running as soon as I stopped I could barely walk. It was like my knees had adjusted to my range of motion from running and when I stopped they could not not move to walk. My cool down walk was painful.

It left me so tired that I was falling asleep at Sunday school, so I left to go back to slept because I knew I had to go to a wedding later and CB would never let me live it down if fell asleep at her friends wedding.

She woke me up at three and told me it was time to leave. Not it was time to get ready, time to leave. I tried to grab a healthy lunch but she told me I had no time. I ended up stopping at McD's. Hard to eat a salad while driving so I went with a burger against my better judgement. The wedding food wasn't any better especially when mixed with the beer I drank to keep myself entertained. Despite months of saying i wasn't going, I am still not sure how I ended up there.

I have a very firm feeling on weddings. THEY SUCK. I helped plan mine to be entertaining, for the sake of other people. I also don't believe in attending a wedding if I don't stand behind the couple. And I never stand behind gold diggers, or women who seek a man for the purpose of getting married (and getting gifts).

On the way down from the mountains I also stopped for ice cream, again not the best choice, but i don't make the best food decisions after drinking.

Monday morning I slept in. I love sleeping in. After getting up I went for a 30 mile ride. much like my long run I just wanted to go slow and get the miles in. I finished in 2:15. My Longest Ride EVER. I got slowed down by traffic signals on the way back in and planning my last 2 miles since my route came out 2 miles short. I also had a few mechanical problems (chain slip) but that's ok because I knew after my ride I was going to the bike shop to drop the bike off.

This weekend may have brought some horrible eating, but I think it also brought some great training- my three longest workouts ever. However, I had some time to think about things. I was bored and had some time on my hands so I broke down my training for the last four weeks. I am a social scientist so I love to quantify everything.

I looked at my next race, estimated my times (conservatively), and broke them down to by percentage of the race (sans transitions). Last week with over 8 hours of training, swimming was 9%, Cycling was 37%, and running was 54% . This was the closest of all the weeks to what actual race percentages will be. The three previous weeks were less cycling. My break down is that my race will be 7% swim, 56% cycling, and 37% run.

This makes me think I need to work more on my cycling, since it is the area I will be in the most. With an 8 hour training week I should swim about 34 minutes, cycle about 4 hours 29 minutes, and run just under 3 hours.

With that in mind I am going to rework my training schedule to two long rides, A hill workout, and my brick. Although I have enjoyed my long runs, I am going to pull them back down to no more than 90 minutes until after this race. After this race I will get back to the long runs, an 11 mile run probably isn't as beneficial for a 5k race. I also am going to shorten my long swim, slightly. I hope substituting the time off my long run and moving it to the bike will get my percentages closer to the race breakdown, without hurting my run. My current run training has been helping me see increases thus far.

On a similar note I read an interesting article this weekend about how triathletes often get stuck int he trappings of swimming 25m and 50m sprints because they are fun, but will be benefited my swimming repeats of 100 or more. I am going to incorporate this into my swim training.

Friday, September 3, 2010


Goals: Brick, eat healthy

Diet Setbacks: Mexican again (but less this time)

Thoughts: I despite being a little sluggish this week, I have still maintained my weight and am hovering at 213 (actually less 211 last night after my ride). Today I ate the mexican again, but only had a fajita, not three entrees like last time. A few hour before my brick I ate ad PBJ and a bag of sun ships just to make sure I could make it through the workout.

Before I went for my brick I lit some charcoal in order to reward myself with a steak upon my return.

I rode the loop the local triathlon uses. I completed it (11 miles) in 45:05. I also set up my transition area before leaving. Got back to transition it took me 2 minutes to change my shoes. It took my 12 seconds at my last race. Big difference. The run portion was 1 mile and it only took me 9:10. Would have been faster but the last hill killed me. I could definitely feel the oxygen deprivation and not sure I could keep this pace up for another 2.1 miles.  I walked 2 miles afterwards. I plan to add a little to the run ever week this month until the race.

Very happy with the run pace. 30 seconds faster than my goal race pace and only 21 seconds slower than my PB. Excellent considering I was just off the bike. Knees and back felt funny for the first quarter mile but that is to be expected.

Not as happy with the bike time. I did cut about 15 minutes off the last time I did this loop, and I got 19-20 mph except, every hill floored me. I climbed in the most granny of all my gear combinations. every hill had me floored. Time for more hill climbs. I need to get this time down in order to make up for my slow run.

I registered yesterday for my next race. local non-circuit triathlon. 250 swim/10 mile bike/ 5k run. Longer swim than the last one by 50m but bike is 2 miles shorter. I would love to beat my last time. The race is about 30 minutes away so I hope to get out and ride the course a few times before race day.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Fun and Games

Very quickly, my daily report.

Goals: AM speedwork and PM long ride

Diet setbacks: small frozen pepsi before bed.

Thoughts: Decided before bed to do my run before work so that I could take a long ride (hopefully 30 miles) after work. AM run goal 6 miles with 5x800 meter intervals. Ran the one mile warm up and began the intervals, as hard as I tried I could not get my pace to my goal for the intervals. After 4 intervals I was exhausted and had to stop. Later in the day I got to think about it and decided to recheck the McMillan calculator for my paces. I had programed the 800 meter pace as the mile pace. I could never get the pace right because I was trying to obtain a pace only 40 seconds slower than the Olympic world record for the 800 meter run. Trying to outright sprint 800 meters wore me down faster than then running them at the correct tempo. After work I had two large bowls of pasta (wheat) as fuel for my long ride. I couldn't wait to try out my new components. I, once again, forgot it gets dark earlier and about 5 minutes out I realized all the cars had headlights on. I still managed almost 15 miles in 55 minutes. Once out of town I was going about 19mph but I was slowed down by stoplights going out of and back into town. I look forward to finding some decent flats one day for a long ride, just to see how fast I can go for a sustained time. Did a lot of out of the saddle sprinting to get back into town faster because it was pitch black. Stupid stuff like this just make me a traffic target. I also want to get a thinner saddle.

Now onto something else-

This week I was tagged twice in two different games of blog tag. (I some how see these as social media versions of chain letter, but I play along).

Both were the same game requiring me to answer 8 questions asked by the tagger and in turn write 8 new questions and tag 8 people.

The following were my questions from Patrick and my answers-

1.You can have one super power, what would it be?

The power to move things with my mind. I would not have to get up for the remote or reach for things on the other side of my office and I would be generally mean spirited with it to skinny people while racing.  AND very mean with it to those 19 year old, 6' 8", solid muscle guys who register to race as clydesdales because they weigh 201 pounds.
2.Which do you see as more important, diet or exercise?
No good answer. I need both. I enjoy most exercise but am a carb junkie so can easily take in more calories than I can burn.
3.If we're forced to become vegetarians by law could you do so or would you frequent the black market for meat?
Black market, but 'd feel bad about it given the whole LEO thing and all.
4.Do you consider the word 'Obese' to be a proper word to define those extremely over-weight, or do you consider it to be improper if not a hateful word?
I do not think it is a bad word but it has developed negative connotation. I do not agree with the definition via BMI or body fat percentage. I was obese by definition and very worried about it so I went to a specialist for help. He told me that people who are clinically obese could not be as active as I was at the time.
5.Do you believe that Elvis died on August 16, 1977 or was his death a conspiracy cover up?
6.How much water do you drink a day and do you agree that water intake of 8 glasses a day or more is critical to a healthy body?
Water is very important. I shoot for 8oz as soon as I leave bed, another 8 while I am getting ready, 32-48 while at work (more if I workout), another 16 at dinner and 8 before I go to bed.
7.Aliens have invaded earth and landed a mile from your house, do you run for the hills, do you grab a weapon & charge, or do you try and communicate with them?
I probably am called back to work to protect the inmates or activated to standy by with search and rescue.
8.Is your current approach to getting healthy an approach you consider to be fun and can you do it for the rest of your life?
Some days I think I should enjoy what I am doing more. I would like to keep up the exercise for the rest of my life in fact increase it. I hope to round out my diet one day and just be balanced, not putting as much planning as I do now.
I was also tagged by River and here are her questions and my answers-
1. Who is your hero? Why?
I am not sure who my hero is. I have many people I admire greatly, but none to hero proportions. I look up to everyone who helped my growing up, finding myself in college, and who encourage me now.
2. Do you have a garden where your grow your veggies? If not do you try to buy organic or do you find it costs way too much?
I grow romaine lettuce, cucumbers, tomatos, sugar baby watermelon, white potatoes, green peppers. That said I yielded one potato, two peppers, and three watermelons. I had about 40 tomatoes of which only 12 were good, but I had more cucumbers and lettuce than I could give away (all in 53 square feet). right now the garden has so many weeds I am thinking about destroying it for the rest of the season. Good news is NC has a double season and at the end of this month I can sew crops again. I plan to triple the size and make some improvements, I want 53 square feet of just lettuce plus add some more crops.
3. Do you use exercise videos? What's your favorite, why?
My ADHD prevents me from being able to workout at home, I will walk off and look at shiny things.
4. Favorite workout music?
When doing more intense workout I listen to Young Jeezy, TI, Little Wayne and other gang/drug rap. Most of it is very driven and intense. When I am in the back country, MTBing, climbing etc. I listen to Sublime and  random punk music.
5. How do you measure your progress? If you haven't reached your goal yet, do you own any skinny clothes you keep to remind you of your goals?
I have multiple sets of goals. Some are clear cut pass fail things (see the 2010 goal page), I also have my weight loss goals I measure in pounds, and I track my running and swimming goals via time trials. I have some clothes from years ago that I hope may fit again one day and I have some clothes I bought last winter after my first bit of weight loss that I hope will look better by this winter.
6. Do you have any secrets to keep your energy up for the workouts or your day in general?
Set micro goals so you can celebrate often and find activities you enjoy so that you look forward to doing them.
7. I like Patrick's super power question so what would your super power be if you could have one?
See above.
8. If you had the opportunity to move to anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I can't pick. I moved almost every year growing up so as much as you would think I would want to settle down, I actually would never stop moving to a hundred different places. I would start with London, England. Then maybe norther California.
NOW MY TURN- I TAG THE FOLLOWING (no one said no tag backs):
  1. River
  2. Patrick
  3. Adam
  4. Laura
  5. Caratunk Girl
  6. Wendy
  7. Andrew
  8. Moving Mertle
My questions are:
  1. What is your favorite song quote?
  2. What is your favorite exercise or workout?
  3. Favorite place to go on vacation and activity to do?
  4. Do you collect anything, if so what and how did it start?
  5. Hardest obstacle you have had to overcome in your weight loss/fitness/training goals?
  6. What do you do now and if you could choose any career what would it be?
  7. If you could choose and exotic animal to have as a pet what would it be?
  8. Do you use a reward system for your goals, (formally set or not) and if so what is your favorite reward?



Goals: 2 mile recovery run

Diet Setbacks: Were not going there.

Thoughts: Another off day. I  feel as Andrew worded it "Ho Hum", still not feeling 100%, the lack of sleep probably is not helping. For this reason I took it easy today and I filled my day with comfort foods. The only thing healthy I ate was an apple.

In the morning I made my recovery run. I did it a little differently today. I ran naked. No garmin, no watch, no HR monitor, no ipod; in fact, I didn't even run my normal route. The goal for my recovery is 2 miles at about a 12:15 pace. Not sure if I ran 2 miles or not, I know I ran at least 1. Truly not worried about it. I just ran, that's all that matters.

Spent some time at the bike shop for some new components and then work. Still feeling a bit odd, making sure to hydrate and make it through the day. It felt better today though. Hopefully I can kick this feeling and get in some great training tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

083110 Off Day

Goals: initially- am recovery run; eventually- just make it through the day

[after thought] before I log my day let me say thank you to everyone for the input on the last post. The consensus is to amp up my workouts. I just need to figure out which ones. I want to keep the pace on my long and recovery runs I am pacing those per the mcmillan calculator. I could add intervals to my run and swim speedwork as long as I can maintain quality. My long ride is faster on my own, slower with the group. Although even on my own I am limited by ability and terrain. I do after all live at the base of the blue ridge mountains after all. I long to find some flats to go take a long ride on. I also may start using more hour based training for the bike to make sure I am making the most of things.
_ _ _ _ _

Have you ever had a day when things felt hazy and almost unreal? That's why I titled this post off day, not to imply rest day at all.At 0200 I woke up hot and sweating, not abnormal for me as I sleep very hot. As I was getting up for water cb woke up and said she was hot asked me to lower the air. On the way to the kitchen, I stopped and saw the thermostat was dead. I spent the next hour trouble shooting the thermostat, air handler, and heat pump to no avail.

Very little sleep the rest of the night, so I was to tired for my workout.

When I got to work I spoke to my boss about taking some time at the end of the day in order to run some errands and make up my workout. Very important to get my swim today as the pool will be closed for the next week.

An hour into work I started getting light headed. I figured it was my blood sugar so I had a protein bar and a real coke. That worked for an hour. Then it came back. I decided to skip my salad and go get a bigger lunch, thinking it is still my blood sugar. After lunch I had to sit through a meeting that didn't help me feel better. By three it was time to shove off.

Headed from work to the bike shop for new stem and bars. After an hour of discussing part they realized they didn't have the correct size quill stem adapter. They are going to bring it from their other shop first thing in the morning. I will be back first thing and I'm gonna have a proper bike fitting.

On the way home 3 minutes after getting on the interstate traffic stopped. Turns out two miles ahead of me one of those ultra fancy half million dollar rv's was on fire on the road. After sitting in the same spot for an hour and a half my light headedness was back and came with a headache.

Turns out cb was also having a rough day so we decided to go get dinner and workout after. By the time dinner was over, the pool was closed so I decided to lay down and scrap the day.
_ _ _

I'm now writing this on 09.01.10 sitting in the parking lot at the bike shop for almost two hours. The guy doing the fitting has not gotten to work yet due to a key issue at their other shop. With limited sleep again it feels like another day running from mr. smith in the matrix.

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