Ouch, that hurt…
Today on my ride, my impatience got the best of me. I went out the door this morning for a long ride (I left my house about 30 minutes too early, if I had left later I would not have gotten wet at all) and thought the rain had ended. Well… I was wrong. Not only did it rain but I actually got hit with some hail out near the Olympic Training Center.
I was going to just pack it in and go home from there. I was cold, my feet were getting wet and I hate that feeling. But then, at my worst moment, the sun came out and I warmed up. I started to feel better and all of the sudden the joy of being out on that bike came back. I headed to Coronado and started to push a higher gear, I started to ride faster. Before I knew it I would have the wind at my back for the next 12 miles on my way home. Thank goodness I did not give in to the resistance, to that voice telling me to quit. If I had I would have missed out on a great day of riding.
After watching the Ironman telecast yesterday I realized now is the time to get my plan for training and racing for 2011 solidified. Key goals for the year (and please share your goals with me as well, I would love to hear what you have in store):
1. Break 13 hours at Ironman Lake Placid. From what I hear this is a tough course and breaking 13 hours would be a good effort. This is my A race for the year.
2. Increase the number of states I have finished a marathon to more than 10. Right now I have seven, so with two Ironmans I need to find a couple of marathons.
3. Stay healthy - this is an obvious one but not being healthy makes me a very frustrated boy.
4. Be a better tourist when I travel for races. I need to seek out more of the history of the towns that I visit. Visit a state capital, look for war history, etc.
5. Make nutrition an advantage, a key ingredient if I may use that pun, to help me live, race and recover better than I ever have.
6. Volunteer a two races. It is time to give back to the races that have helped me.
That is it for now. Let me know what you have in store for the year ahead.
Going back to the Beginning
Today I headed back to Mission Bay and Mission Beach for a long run. What was cool about it was that is where, in 2006, I started to do my first long run training. My buddy Russ talked me into doing the Silver Strand Half Marathon. For some crazy reason I agreed to do it with him but I thought running 13 miles was absolutely insane.
My first run with him was six or seven miles and I was crushed. I thought what in the heck am I doing and was I really going to be able to finish a half marathon.
But week after week we slowly inched up the miles and soon we were at ten. I believe that is where we plateaued and it worked. I was able to finish the half marathon feeling decent. I have to thank Russ for talking me into that first race because it has evolved into multiple marathons and 7 Ironmans and counting. The people I have met and the journey in this sport is a great reward for staying with it. You should too.
On another note, I finished a great book this weekend. Matt Long was a great runner, triathlete and endurance athlete. He was hit by a bus and almost died. Through painful and dedicated work he was able to get back. Click here to see his story. http://www.runnersworld.com/article/0,7120,s6-243-297—13053-0,00.html
Sometimes training for Ironman events makes no sense. Your body will throw you curves when you really ramp up the mileage and normally that curve makes you swing and miss. After yesterday’s 5 hour bike ride I was not expecting much today. I started out today for a one hour ride then followed by a one hour run.
Not big mileage but I wanted to try to up the intensity. It started out ugly, my legs were really tired but I just kept at it and 30 minutes in I started to feel much better.
The second half hour was much better and I was hammering it. I got off the bike expecting to really be dragging but I had probably my best run in training.
Maybe, I hit that curve ball for at least a double! Only 41 days to go to Florida and I am going for a PR. Stay tuned.
Yesterday and Today was my maiden voyage for my new tri bike and let me tell you it is a faster machine than my road bike (Bianchi). It is really amazing how you can feel the difference. The bike seems to respond to when I push it and I saw on my computer the increased speed I was getting. Pretty darn cool.
The down side is a new saddle that I must get used to and I am hear to say I am not used to it now. My next race is the first weekend in August so I will update you on how it affects my average speed.
Thank you to the boys at Pulse sports for the great deal and fitting the bike. They are the best so check them out at www. pulse-es.com.
Going Solo (or not)
After years and years of training alone I am starting to REALLY develop a liking to riding with others. Yesterday I went for a ride with my buddy Dave and we had a great time and it was so much more enjoyable. I was pushed harder than I wanted to and we took some time to stop for coffee and desert. What a great way to spend part of my July 4th.
For too long I have always done run and bike workouts on my own. I guess out of convenience but moving my schedule around to work out with others is something I am going to commit myself to doing. I know it probably sounds obvious to most but sometimes we just need to get out of our comfort zone.
Running with others will be my next foray into this group thing. I rarely run with others but maybe it would hold the same attraction as riding.
My advice today - get out and run and bike with others. It can make a tough workout seem so much more enjoyable!
My Son is 11 today
Today is my son’s 11th birthday. Christopher is a great kid and I am so proud to be his father. Today during swim practice I couldn’t help but think of him and reflect back on when I was 11. At that time I was swimming competitively and I have to confess I was incredibly average. What I did have a passion for was racing. I loved to get on the blocks and see if I could beat someone else or I could improve my time.
My mom loved to take me to swimming and she really enjoyed going to the meets. I think getting up there and competing is so important for quite a few reasons, probably too many to list here but maybe I will start working through that list this summer. Suffice it to say, getting up there nearly naked and seeing what you are made of is a skill that most of us are using in the business world right now.
Back to Christopher. He is starting to develop an interest in triathlon and I know that comes from my involvement in the sport. Talk about a reason to keep at it, right there makes the sacrifice and pain worth it. He is pretty good at running and we are going to start getting out on the bike more and ride to school as much as possible. The best gift I could possibly give him is the gift of passion for triathlon which I hope one day he can give to his kids.
This morning was a quick swim to try to get back to triathlon training. I have been spending more time on running this month, it was my theme. Next month (July) will be a cycling theme.
Getting back in the pool this morning was good and I really believe this a great way to recover. As you may or may not know, my run this weekend did not go well so I woke up this morning with the mindset that I am going to make a 100% commitment to doing exactly what I should be doing each day to achieve my best results in my races. I have had a few holes in my past and I will share more of this in the future but today I just want to get committed to 100%.
Lance Armstrong has a great print ad that says, “whatever your 100% looks like, give it.” Today is the beginning for me, do you want to come along? Let me know what your 100% will look like.
Running with the Devil
This weekend I signed up for the Running with the Devil marathon (www.calicoracing.com). Just a quick 26.2 miles through the Mojave Desert at the end of June. Last year the temperature was 112 degrees. You have to love a race in that kind of heat that does not start until 10 am. Do you think they are really testing you?
I signed up for a couple of reasons - 1 to get a race in and 2 to see what kind of suffering I can tolerate.
#1 - I am the type of person that needs races, i.e. goals and timelines. My diet and workout schedule goes to hell if I don’t. I heard a great expression some time ago that says “dates drive discipline” and I know it to be true. Once I was thinking about this race my training picked up, the intensity of my workouts and my focus. All good things so I am going to adopt the Bob Babbitt philosophy of triathlon - Race more, train less.
#2 - I am starting to have a mental mindshift of not being satisfied with finishing races such as Ironman. I believe I am starting to go down the road of testing myself in more extreme ways. Hopefully it won’t kill me.
Stay tuned for more details and pictures. The race is June 26th so it will be here soon!
1 Week to Go!
One week from today I will be doing Ironman St. George. Today I felt pretty darn sluggish on a 10k run. Although this is typical in a taper as you lead up to the race it never stops making me worry if I am timing it right or if I did enough or too much training.
Usually it works out fine and I hope this is the case. I have not swam as much as I usually do but I have definitely put the time in on the bike. Last week going up Palomar Mountain was rough. It was amazing how good I felt the next day when I ran a 10k. Hopefully that is a good sign.
Stay tuned for a few more pre-race posts and I will also try to get some pictures leading up to the race. Keep your fingers crossed for some good weather. It has been crazy over there lately.