Friday, January 30, 2009

GET OUT SATAN

I was out yesterday doing a 1 hour run with 3x12 min Z3 (168-175HR) intervals w/ 3-5 mins Z2 in between.  As usual, I ran around Tiburon and run on the road and the trail that appears and disappears on the side of the road.  It's rolling but I swear there are more uphills than down.  I was pretty tired since Thursday is the end of the mid-week effort and I've only been on my schedule for 2 weeks - so it's still fairly stressful on me.  Here's what I did (trust me this matters to the story):

  • Mon: 1 hour run w/ farleks - 5 mins, 4 mins and 3 mins (zone 3, low Z4, high z4) - all with equal rest.  Master's swim in the afternoon - 1 hour.
  • Tues: 1.3 hour run w/ hard up hills and Z2 down hills, avg pace low Z3.  Master's swim in the afternoon - 1 hour.
  • Wed: Spin at Endurance PTC, 4 x 8 mins in Z3 (270 watts) w/10 mins of high Z2 in between #2 and #3. 1.5 hours + 15 mins of running drills. Master's swim in the afternoon - 1 hour.
  • Thur: 1 hour run (as described above).  Master's swim in the afternoon - 1 hour.

So I run with a lot of gadgets - my iPod, my Garmin 201 and my Polar 625x - it's a lot but still less than the Sony Sports Walkman I ran with for years and years - plus I don't have to flip over the cassette. 

I was like 40 mins into the run and from out of nowhere - I TOTALLY TRIPPED and I didn't even stumble, I just started flying forward and somehow I did a beautiful roll on the ground - never even putting my hands out because I was holding my iPod.  I looked down and I had hit the button on my Polar to show the calories I had burned and it showed 666.  That's right, Satan was calling and I just rolled once and kept going in the middle of my interval.  I was also listening to Motley Crue.  I'm sure that was it.

On another note - I've been dealing with this lingering cold for WEEKS - mostly just a stuffy head but not much else - a few aches for a few days in early Jan but nothing much more than a stuffy head.  2 weeks ago at Endurance in my spin class I was struggling to ride at 190 watts at 100 rpm.  Last week I was able to push 250 watts at 100 rpm and this week I was pushing 280 watts at the end at 105rpm.  I was amazed at how much strength could be sapped by a cold. 

I also have been told by most of the folks I've been swimming with - the senior citizen contingent - that I've gotten noticeably faster in the past few days!  I still think I swim 1:50 100's though.  Even though this is slow, it's about 10-15 seconds faster than I raced at that year.  If my goal is to shave 5 mins off my swim, then I'm about 3.25 mins closer!  Baby steps.

This weekend I'm just riding 3 hours tomorrow - I might even go at a nice pace and enjoy the ride rather than ride at a certain wattage or HR.  Sunday is a 1.5 hour trail run 2x up and down Ring Mtn - which means I have to avg. low Z3 on the run - pushing the hills hard and coasting the down hills. 

Monday, January 26, 2009

SUPER BOWL SUNDAY

I was with Sada most of the day yesterday getting her from Dr. appt to buying some new gels (Power Bar plain) to getting antibiotics - it was like a 5 hour deal.  While I was out Greta called and asked me to pick some Super Bowl food up - this means stuff that probably isn't good for my training or speedo fitting or hill climbing.  Since I generally watch stuff we record on TV (Nip Tuck or triathlons) or stuff we Netflix - I had no idea the Super Bowl was on, so 'sure'. 

I got bean buns, and hot wings and peanuts and eggplant and chips and wine and salsa.  Not everything was to accompany our super bowl watching , but some of it was.  Who doesn't love football and bean buns? 

We got home, fired up the microwave and got some dip and chips and wine and bean buns and then went upstairs to watch the game. 

But it turns out, the super bowl wasn't on, so we watched the Real Housewives of Orange County.  Which I think was Greta's version of the Super Bowl.

Which I like sort of.... but I can't believe anyone would marry these women.  Date them?  sure, but marry and commit to listening to their yammering and paying for them to run around and ignore the kids and shop and not even clean a single bike? 

The show is really a celebration of fake boobs and blond hair which I can of course appreciate but I'm not sure why they record them - it would be better if they just played some Motley Crue ballads or John Tesh or the Dark Side of the Moon or the soundtrack from An American in Paris or Yanni.

The show does have more than blond haired women on it but I don't really pay them much attention. 

I think I'm going to DVR it from now on.

I also watched My Redneck Wedding for 10 mins and amazed that we all have an equal vote and there are no tests required before having children.  1) We shouldn't. 2) There should be.

All of this came after I had a good week of training: 4x master's swim - 4 hours, ran 3.25 hours, rode 6.5 hours and a little yoga.  Basically the same week this week - just a little more running.  I did a long group ride but they went up Alpine dam which I hadn't really planned for (mentally I like a sort of a preparedness before my rides - where I'm going, what the workout is, ...) and that is a shorter ride than the 3.5 hours I wanted to get - plus hills means only pedally 2/3rd of the time at a given watt range. 

So I rode out to meet the group, which was late - so I rode up Camino Alto, didn't see them.

Rode down. 

Found them at the bottom and then rode up again. 

Then we pedaled at like 60-100 watts. 

Then I decided that I don't like group rides that aren't gunning from mile 1 or even mile 4.  Mile 10 is late for me.  I don't race like that - so why train like it?  I'm sure Ben's group ride in Seattle will be a bit different.  I should not it was labeled a 'social ride'.

So I took off with 2 other guys who wanted to ride longer and one of them wanted to do some TT efforts.  Then I rode at 250w on the flats and 300w on the hills, no more and no less.  I just pulled and they just sat, which is fine cause someone in front of me usually wrecks my watts. 

One guy dropped (the guy doing the TT efforts) who I caught later after stopping to eat and get water.  The other guy turned around - but he was solid and it turns out that we finished within like 3 mins of each other at Vineman. 

So I caught a team out for a ride but they wanted to go like 200w after the halfway mark and I left them at precisely 220-250w. 

And then I rode home alone with my iPod.  But had a solid last 1.5 hours (It took 2 hours to get to Pt Reyes with all of this group ride stuff and 1.5 home) and felt pretty good.

Next week I'll probably ride alone so that a 3.5 hour ride doesn't take 4.5 hours to do.  And then watch the other Super Bowl.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I’m NOT DEAD YET

But I almost thought I was, today doing a few laps of breath control – which for me is about as close to drowning as I care to get. 

Idea: let’s swim and not breathe. 

Me: ok, that sounds well thought out.  remember I’m the guy breathing EVERY STROKE and falling behind?  I’ll try it though since there is no life guard and 80% of my lane is over 60 and would never notice if I was drowning because my swimming and my drowning look remarkably alike. 

I did 4x masters swim this week.  I thought my arms were going to fall off and then as I swam I never heard of that EVER, so I kept going.  I’ve got 14.5 hours of training on my plate this week, which is tough, because Greta is no longer working and is going to start giving me the eye anytime I sneak out to exercise while she’s home with the kids (I did get her a brand new Nordic Track elliptical machine that Sada has actually used more than Greta has).  Sorry…  and we’ve got mid year business reviews and I’m the analyst who provides the data and now that MSFT is cutting jobs we HAVE TO SHOW THAT WE’RE MAKING PROGRESS.  So that means lots of tables and charts and The Lorpeedo has the data.  So I’m working a lot. 

I am still sneaking in 20 mins of early AM yoga but I don’t let the dog out before I start because doing yoga and yelling ‘get the hell off Jack’ and having him nail-rape my legs as he jumps all over me – it wasn’t fun.  It was like doing yoga with a fork in your spandex.  His nails are sharp.  I do it with coffee except now that I’ve dumped a cup ALL OVER THE CARPET, I leave it on the table for the rest I need between boat pose and downward dog. 

I have no idea why anyone in the world would ever do yoga with other people unless the room is full of hot women and my pineapple isn’t hanging all out and they’re all struggling worse than me. 

Strike that, I would never do yoga around other people.  Pineapple show or not.  Not even with a dog.

I’m also the only person who gets winded sitting and doing yoga. 

I also am now almost done with my first week back with coach Tim Flemming.  He’s way more fit than I am, so I keep doing what he says and my Poli Sci degree never covered lactate threshold and their impact on the constituency.  They’re making me spin, which isn’t fun because I LOVE 83 rpm.  At least I’m feeling better this week and my watts are up about 50 from last week, but I’m not 100%. 

So then between yesterday and hearing about MSFT laying off 5,000 people and today – it was a good time to get some sleep and stress free workouts in.  I think I slept none, even with sleeping pills and then I had a conf call with London and Japan (the guy in Japan will actually get on a call at 12:30am – animal).  And then all day everyone IM’s back and forth wondering if anyone knows anything and I’m trying to work and then train a little and then wonder if I have a job. 

I have a job, but more cuts.  The reaper may return but hopefully not.  He got 2 of my friends from Redmond. 

Anytime I hear bad news I try and think about something positive and know that Ben does this all the time about living in Seattle and if he can find one good thing about Seattle then I sure can find something.  I do have more friends to train with and when we move to Seattle we’ll save about $1,200+ a month in CA income tax (I claim like 331 on my form). 

I also ran today after swimming for 1 hour and had an avg HR of 171 and a max of 185.  I also weigh 4 lbs less than I did 2 weeks ago.  The scale says 6 but I’m rounding down. 

My legs are looking awesome too.  I’ll have to take a photo soon but I’ll likely break the lens.  I bet Greg looks at his abs more than I look at my legs though and I know Ben and Court look at each other’s legs and wonder whose is more veiney –cause I heard them say that once. 

We’re a bunch of damn weridos.

I also found that if you call a fellow triathlete fat even though they’re not they have a pretty much completely ruined day. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Dear Ariel (The Little Mermaid): Suck It.

Not in the mean way, but sort of.  She like Ben and Greg were born swimming and haven't stopped.  I wasn't the spawn of King Triton and walked for basically the first 35 years of my life without more than 5 days of swimming (which was at the YMCA camp when I was 7).  Because of this I learned the hard way that racing in a triathlon with the dead man's float as my approach was not going to work (but if the YMCA wants to know, if I died in the water, I'd know exactly how to lay in the water, face down, dead and not going very fast). 

kahunabike3I had to learn to swim and not like 'hey let's jump into the water and swim to the dock where we'll sit all day' kind of swimming - the real deal with speedos and goggles and lanes and a coach and a clock (which I still just look at to see how much longer).  Wearing the speedo took me like over a year to actually do and after Ben wrote a post about WHY, it sort of made sense, so now my tan lines are closer together.

Last year I averaged about 1,500 yards a workout if that - I swam 35 mins and took a lot of breaks.  Like 30-60 second breaks.  I swam 2 times a week max.  Sometimes less.  I hated swimming.  More than Liberals but not more than Unions and rednecks.  I really don't hate, I dislike but really don't have time for negative stuff in my life - more on that and having to move to Seattle in July later....

Now thanks to Soda I got into the Tiburon Master's swimming program where there are people who literally have been swimming 40 years and THEY ALL WEAR SPEEDOS.  I also have a triathlon coach and a swim coach.  The triathlon coach wants me to focus on swimming this month because I, um, swam 1 time in December.  I also sort of suck.  But I suck less than a few other people.  When you consider that you have to also bike (very little suck) and run (a tiny bit of suck) - I'm pretty decent for middle age and all my stuff matches real good and I look like I know what I'm doing, which is good and works psyching out your competitors until you have to actually start racing.  But they waste the nervous energy worrying about the age grouper with the fancy stuff and the matching bike and helmet and the AWESOME UNDER ARMOUR sponsorship.  Though until they actually get me my shoes, I love my K-Swiss Keahou more than any other running shoe ever.  Except my 1989 Nike Air Span II - which were the best ever. 

I started back swimming 2 weeks ago and swam twice for 1 hour each.  That was pretty much the MOST swimming I've ever done in 1 week.  There's a lady named Sara there, she's like 72 and I gave her a run for her money (she wears 2 swim caps, one is thermal).  She said if I learned to do flip turns I'd beat her.  I didn't push her down on the pool deck, but next time I'm totally taking money out of her change purse.  Even though he had cancer and was going through chemo and I'm sure about 3,212 more excuses he'd throw on there, Ian has pasted me time and time again in the water - so like a hound dog, I'm pretty used to getting beat by anyone. 

Score:

  • People who swam as kids: 1,302,394,241
  • Senior Citizens 1
  • Lorpeedo 0

Then our nanny didn't come back from Mexico and I missed ALL of my swimming last week - but the 2 hours in the prior week did help.  This week I have to swim 4x - same for the next 3 weeks.  That is now essentially what I did in some months last year - all in a week. 

Yesterday I got tired after a lot of 4x100s.  But a new girl showed up and she sucked the most.  I beat her. 

Score:

  • People who swam as kids: 1,302,394,241
  • Senior Citizens 1
  • Lorpeedo 1
  • New Girl: 0

Today we did a bunch of 400's, 300's, 200's and 100's and the 50's and finally 25's.  I got tired on some but felt better and tried to swim on top of the water and I didn't get so pooped.  I actually left for each set when everybody else did - I even got going before some of the speedier folks (I should note that I swim in the B group, I'd probably be in the C group but there isn't one).   There are a bunch of IM stuff we do which means I have to do a breast stroke/fly and backstroke - plus freestyle but since I'm regarded as 'sucky' - I can swim however I want, just don't make the other folks wait too long. 

Note: if you watch the Ironman videos and they're highlighting some paralyzed guy/gal - just note how many people get smoked by people who can't even KICK!  We all get beat by someone.  Just be glad it's not a 72 year old-double-swim-cap-wearing lady. 

A new guy showed up.  I beat him.  He can do flip turns.  But he's not the Lorpeedo. 

Score:

  • People who swam as kids: 1,302,394,241
  • Senior Citizens 1 (she's having surgery this week - nice excuse)
  • Lorpeedo 2
  • New Girl: 0 (not sure she'll ever show again)
  • New Guy: 0 (he'll be back)

So there, I'm doing better and swimming and almost liking in and I thought I only had 1 more swim this week, but I have 2.  And I'm going to have fun and I'm going to be faster and anyone who is avoiding triathlon because they can't swim should come swim with me because you might just beat someone and feel better about yourself if not, we can steal some change from Sara when she comes back. 

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Kicking Myself Silly

After a pretty miserable week of not feeling good (this is week 2 of that), not swimming due to no nanny and now a missing 2nd income – what a crappy week.  We’re trying to figure out if we will stay here in CA or if we should just call it a big adventure over and move back to exactly where we were 2 years ago – except with a lot less in our pockets but a ton of great friends and a wonderful 2 years in the sun.  I’ll write more on this next….

In between feeling like I’ve been hit by a bus and a decroded piece of crap – I did get out for about 18 miles of running last week and after laying in bed for 2 days I got out for a ride today ~60 miles.  I rode with a group which makes riding with a Power Tap or HR a bit hard but I did get to put in some good efforts and work on finishing stronger than I started. 

We started with about 20 people and after the short climb over Camino Alto (maybe a 6-7 min climb at most) we had dropped about 5 people and it was clear there were 2 groups for the ride – so I suffered a bit and hopped on the tail of the A group and vowed to keep it mellow and not attack and not get silly and attack where I will end up paying for it. 

I had to stop for a nature break before the climb up White’s Hill (maybe 6-7 min climb) and rode up at 300w but caught a bunch of what would be the B group which we never saw again.  I rode an easy Z1 and under 260w – until meeting up with the faster folks. 

BTW: The one part I hate about group rides is the stopping and waiting and chatting and going too slow.  A 60 mile ride by myself takes 3:30 max and has 2 nature breaks and 1 water stop.  With a group – it can be 4+ hours and I’m not riding where I should be. 

They said they were rolling out about as soon as I rolled in – so I jumped on and we rode a pretty good tempo out to Pt. Reyes about 20-25 mins out.  We watered up and rode steady home – the only drawback was that no one rode with any sort of Power or HR, so it was a lot of hard – slow- hard – slow – which you can see in the graph below.  Avg Watts were low and around 220w – which was fine for a sick day.  Towards the end of the ride I would go to the front and hold a nice tempo of 300-350w for 3 mins at a time – which I was really happy being able to do.  I did set a new watt record for 10 min power – but I’m not seeing the 25w weekly increases that Lance has been seeing, then again I ride 120-140 miles a week max.  I’m sure that’s all I’m missing – more miles. 

Below is my power output from today.  You can see the climb up Camino Alto at 275-300w about 30 mins in, another climb up White’s Hill around 70 mins and then sitting behind a group with 2 pulls in a pace line from 115-135 (mins), some flats where I sat in and then more pace line and lastly the final stretch home from 150-170 mins where I did a bunch of the pulling. 

image

I should have my training plan from my coach this weekend that will bring me all the way through to New Orleans 70.3.  I know it will consist of me swimming 3x a week and about 6 weeks of 4-6 hour long rides – so I’ll be skipping the group rides soon and will be getting in some quality alone time. 

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Inside Iraq Obama

I'm getting out of my funk and being depressed - or I'm trying in between over-dosing on tylenol and i-boo-pro-fin. 

This is about the retarded stuff my kids say.  And I know I'm not supposed to say 'retarded' to kids, but I'm not so PC sometimes.  I'm sort of retarded.

Sada was in the car with me and she said something to the effect of how can someone be "inside a rock".  then I realized we were listening to the news and she must have heard this is Carl Castle...  "inside iraq today blah blah blah..."

Who is the next president?  Sada knew, Iraq Obama.  It's a theme you know.  She'll also tell you there's no snow in Tahoe, I think she knows this from every kid at school whose parents have a place there - we don't 1) because I'll wreck my knee 2) I don't like skiing THAT much 3) I don't even have my own house here. 

imageI was working in the living room as I usually do and Piper had been playing in there for a while and the toys were scattered, basically in a mess.  Piper comes from the play room and with her arms outstretched says to me 'this is a MESS, amen' and walks away.

In between blessings, I'm watching a few interesting DVD's - one " Bigger, Stronger, Faster" is an interesting documentary on steroids (the guy next door here makes a pretty decent argument too).  It's pretty interesting given the current state of cycling - the argument made is convincing - but not as lame as the one I hear this past weekend from a solid triathlete who rode a 2:21 bike at 70.3 Worlds.  He said if you're not wiling to draft then you're racing in a different race.  Am I?  No.  I should name names too.  I was impressed by this guy until he told me that.  We're not in the same age group - so I don't really care, but he's weak and young and is a stay at home dad and I hope his wife says the same about whether or not she should be nailing her boss to get ahead at work and make a few extra bucks each year.  I don't mean his wife saying that she should be drafting at work but have a similar lack of ethics, sort of. 

The other DVD I'm watching is the 3 DVD John Adams.  David McCollugh was behind this as was Tom Hanks.  It's awesome and riveting to watch.  I now have to go back and read John Adams which has been my most favorite biography - but very close to Ben Franklin and George Washington.  If you want to talk 18th century American history, I'll go all day without a latte. 

John Adams

I didn't train today and I didn't swim all week but I did run at least 17 miles in 2 days.  My coach will be getting me my plan for the next 3 months tomorrow - so hopefully I won't be sick, Greta will find a job that makes her happy and pays $100k annually and the kids are accepted into an after-school program.  This all needs to happen tomorrow. 

John Adams didn't train much and he seemed to turn out ok. 

Son of a Bitch...

Belgium 015that's about all I can say.  I wasn't feeling great yesterday but still ran 11 before the sun was up - even some nice 6:30 and faster miles,  but then I didn't feel great.  I tried riding on a bike trainer but didn't last 15 mins - soooooo boring.  I need to have more to do that to sit and spin. 

then Greta called and said the VC backing her company just cut funding and that her position no longer existed.

then our nanny called and said she was back from Mexico (she was supposed to be back on Monday but didn't show - she was sick and couldn't fly).  then we let her know that funding just got cut and her position no longer existed. 

then I woke up at 2am and felt terrible and every single joint in my body hurt, not because I've skipped doing yoga 2x this week but parts that I didn't use running hurt, like my knuckles and my neck.

I also haven't been able to swim since I've had no nanny to watch piper. 

now we need to figure out if we should cut our lease early and move somewhere or kill ourselves to get Greta a new job - I suspect moving is a better option, we don't really need to live on the ocean and next to Robin Williams.  He's only been funny once and although he did let me see all of the bikes in his garage, it wasn't 'the' collection of bikes he is known for - those are at his ranch.  he doesn't always wear a helmet when he rides. 

our cat also snores like a longshoremen. 

I also just took 6 Tylenol by accident, I meant to take 2 but somehow took all of the pills in my hand.  perhaps it's a really weak subconscious suicide attempt.

i thought for sure that Obama would have fixed everything by now.    

I feel like the building above.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Skunks, Cherry Throw Up and Vertigo

These are the last 3 things that I would have said would be a part of this morning’s hill repeat workout – but they were a part.  I got up at 5am with the goal of running by 6am.  The air was warm – so I didn’t have to wear more than a long-sleeve top, a hat, gloves and shorts (running shoes too).  It was about 52F though I did run through a few nice patches of even warmer air.

image

The moon was full a few days ago – so I still had quite a bit of moonlight to run by.  The warm up is about 15-20 mins of easy running to the hill (.25 miles long) where I went an easy Z1.  The only problem is that there are quite a number of trees that blocked the moonlight – so I ran in the pitch black which always feels weird – you can sort of see where you are but not exactly.  A car or two went by and left me blind for a good 2-3 mins where I got within a foot of falling off the road and down into a ravine.  My head really did not like running in the dark and I felt really dizzy – it was like I didn’t trust that each step would find solid pavement. 

I ran in the moonlight on the hills and that helped – but now I was going up the hill, along with my HR and the cheery Clif shot I had before the run.  I don’t know why I ever get any flavor other than Cola, Vanilla or Plain.  I always pay the price of a ‘return visit’ every single time.  I will only get Vanilla, I will only get Vanilla, I will only get Vanillia….

As I got to the top of the hill I remembered seeing a dead skunk on the side of the road the day before – so I had a putrid smell to endure just about the time my HR saw 185+ as well as the top of the hill. 

Good times. 

I did catch a whiff of early season Jasmine somewhere along the run which has only one rival for ‘best smell while exercising’ – BBQ. 

image

Friday, January 9, 2009

2009 Season Schedule

IMAGE_094 (2)

Now that I’m over my triathlon suicide attempt and I see sun and the temps over 50 AND I’m not too scared to get crushed in the pool – I’ve got a schedule and something to look forward to.  I took the picture above on a ride today – ez w/low RPM hills in Z1/Z2 around the Marin Headlands - avg 237 watts.

  • Snelling Road Race - Feb 21 (Cat 3)
  • Zamora Road Race - March 22 (Cat 3)
  • New Orleans 70.3 - April 5
  • Vineman Showdown - April 11 – sprint
  • IRONMAN Hawaii Lottery announced – April 15 (getting in would change a few things below)
  • Ice Breaker Tri - April 18 - sprint
  • Napa Valley Sprint - May 3 - sprint
  • UVAS - May 17 - sprint
  • Vacation May 20-30
  • Tri for Fun: June 6 - sprint
  • San Jose - June 21 - Olympic
  • Vineman 70.3  - July 20th? – I’m signed up – that’s what matters.
  • TImberman 70.3 - Aug 20? - I’m signed up – that’s what matters.
  • Kirkland Triathlon – Sept 27th - sprint
  • 70.3 World Champs

I’d also like to find some 10k and a half marathon or two that don’t involve swimming and biking before – just to try and mix it up ala Kelly ‘Tire Lever’ Dunleavy. Ideas?

And yes, there are some slacker races in here.  I’ve done nearly every one of these races – so I’m looking to see how I improve with a focus on racing all out for 1-2 hours as opposed to racing in Z2/Z3 for 4.5 hours. 

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Why I Moved to California from Seattle via New Hampshire

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here are 2,000 words:

image

I get to ride up the hill to this spot and then up and up and up Mt. Tam.

IMG_9116 Stitch

You can see some pictures from the climb that Rich Steeeeeeele took that I’ve posted in a previous entry.  It honestly looks like this almost all of the time (Except after a rainstorm, then it looks wet, at night it also looks darker).

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Triathlon Suicide

I almost did it.  But I didn’t.

I’ve been so stressed about not having enough time to do what I would consider to be a minimal amount of training (10-12 hrs) that I was ready to start appealing to race directors and hotels to refund my money for the races I’ve signed up for and train when the sun is out and when it’s warmer and when I feel like it.  I almost quit altogether. 

I even clicked on a few links trying to find refund policies and then I stopped.  I took off the vagina that I was apparently wearing and raced off to swim practice. 

I mostly hate swimming and that’s where the anxiety comes from – but in order to make it manageable I’m just getting in 2 days of 1 hour masters.  I still sucked but I was in the pool and swimming after a month of pretty much nothing. 

Everything else I have to take in stride and focus on getting everything done when it’s scheduled and if life gets in the way – then deal with it. 

I need to have a few weeks of solid training before I feel better about things – not that I’m a slug, I’m probably faster now than anytime last season – but if I was content with that I’d be fine and could get by with mediocre training and about 8-10 hours of effort. 

I have to watch the 2008 Ironman again too.

I also have to think about my race schedule which will include:

  • New Orleans 70.3
  • Ice Breaker Triathlon
  • UVAS Triathlon
  • San Jose International Triathlon
  • Vineman 70.3
  • Timberman 70.3
  • Sacramento International Triathlon
  • Big Kahuna Half Ironman
  • 70.3 World Championships

I’ll also do 2-3 bike races and will try and find some off week 10k and Half Marathons to do. 

I’ve got too much time to think in between saving massive Excel files.  I need to stop worrying. 

Monday, January 5, 2009

In the Long Run

You’d think after a few years that I’d figure out how to eat and drink – but I don’t.  I did have some initial success with a lower cal effort but my workouts turned to poop.  I couldn’t sustain my power on the bike (and thus got chicked by Alison) and I struggled in my longer runs.  Below is a chart from a long run where I did a bit over 11 miles – about a 7:45 pace.  You’ll see that I start out easy and go into a steady effort where the terrain (sort of rolling) for the first few miles cause my HR to fluctuate – but it’s still in Z2.  Then I make an effort to push towards the end from about 20 to 60 mins as a gradual build.  The last 20 mins is easy with 2 small hills to climb.  I do this run all of the time - but sometimes it doesn’t look like this and it hurts.  The pace from about 20 mins to 60 mins is 7:30 to 7 mins.  I did this run with Marc Malott – who is about 22 (years, not kilos) and ran really well.  Our HR’s were pretty close until we hit the hills and where I suspect the 20lbs I’ve got on him made me work a bit more. 

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Now here is the same route – except counter clockwise, then the wrinkle: I had an idea.  Actually, I’ve been trying to be a better runner and what I’m finding is that to do this 1) run a lot 2) finish longer runs with harder efforts.  So the big, dumb idea I had was to start off slow and increase my pace by 10 seconds per mile for every mile I ran – which was 11.25.  I started off so slow I couldn’t even run as slow as I wanted to – so I started around 9’s or at least the idea that I could, but actually ran something around 8:40 for the first two miles and then got into the pace a little better.  The differences in avg HR was only 2 beats but the effort for the one below felt really hard at the end for some reason – I’ll likely have to try it again after fueling better.  The terrain going counter-clockwise on the route also progresses from downhill to flat to uphill to rolling – basically easy to hard. 

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New Orleans 70.3 in 90 days

That is what gets me out training – except in the pool.  I had a great weekend – actually starting around 12/30 – I rode a lot and ran not nearly enough but more than I’m hoping my competition did.  While Ben and Courtenay were visiting I was able to scamper out for the 1st hill repeat workout of the season – 4x the local hill (about 7% grade and .25 miles long, maybe .26).  The goal is to hit about a 180+ HR on each repeat while also maintaining decent form.  The first one went fine, the 2nd one I was ready to quit and walk it home (about 1 mile from the hilltop) but I knew that I’d have to face Ben after a 25 min run workout as well as know I quit after only 50%.  I also know that it always hurts the worst and then it gets better.  Always.  It did get better and I had 2 more good repeats and even saw (unintentionally) 190 bpm! 

I then came down with a bit of a sinus bug which kept me in but I still got out when I had good patches. 

I rode with Ian and got in 2.5 hours on the bike – doing my 45 rpm hills at 300w on Thursday, sick Friday and then I got out do ride easy on Sat for 2-3 hours.  It turned out that I was able to set some new 30 and 60 min avg. watt records while climbing up Mt. Tam and the 7 Sisters (I successfully counted 7 too).  I ended up getting in 257 avg watts for the ride – when I had NOT intended anything but to suffer with my stuffed head and hope to ride at 220.  To continue with the theme of ‘more is more’ training – I decided to run 13 miles and put in some nice steep hills just about when it starts to hurt (miles 7-10) and I included Corinthian and Belvedere hills which are about 7-12% for 5 mins and 10 mins respectively.  I had clearly been dehydrated from the past few days and really suffered as I saw my avg HR go from a low Z2 (160) to 180+.  I got up and did yoga today and skipped the swim because I’m tired and would rather work and not swim in the rain (stupid but true). 

Below is the anatomy of my hill repeat workout – you can see I sort of walked/jogged a bit more between the 3rd and 4th effort – slacker?  No, I actually ran further down the hill for a few extra seconds of hurl inducing pain for the final repeat.

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Now that the holidays and excuses are mostly over, I’m onto a good schedule ~12-15 hours:

M: yoga AM

T: hill repeats x 5 in AM (run), swim PM 1 hr.

W: yoga AM, ride 2 hours AM (Endurance PTC class w/coach) + short 20 min brick run

TH: run 60-90 mins w/tempo AM, swim PM 1 hr.

F: yoga AM, ride 2 hours w/efforts from 250w to 350w. 

Sa: ride 3-4 hours w/various efforts and all hills @ 45 RPM + 30 min Z4 run after

Su: run long AM, 80 mins – RPE 7, run  PM 30 mins, Z4

and yes, I know I need to swim more.  Ideally I’ll add that in on Mondays and make it more of a recovery effort.  I have a terrible time being motivated to swim outside unless it’s sunny – warm and sunny is best, but right now I’ll take sunny.

Note: I also mention my watts and know this is different for everyone based on their weight and fitness and age.  My Z2 is 220w-260w, towards the end of long rides 260w is actually Z3.  My Z3 is about 260-300W.  Z4 is 300-350W.  My max HR on the bike is around 200 and running it is around 210.  I’m 37 and my max HR hasn’t changed much in the past 15 years.

I am also surprisingly competitive.