Wednesday, January 31, 2007
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
There are all sorts of adventure races, from the 2 hour sprints, to the 7 day ecochallenges. Most AR's include mountain biking and running at a minimum, but others can include kayaking, swimming, trekking, orienteering, repelling down a mountain/rock, climbing up a mountain/rock, and most go until after the sun sets, so lights are usually mandatory! I have done 5 AR's since moving to San Diego, all put on by a guy named Barrie Adsett. He puts on 4 FREE AR's a year in the San Diego/Baja region - for the main purpose of having FUN! It really doesn't get any better than that!
To most people, Penasquitos Canyon is a relatively flat canyon - and it is - on the main trail. But we spent a lot of time on the north side of the main trail, where there was plenty of elevation gain. I gotta say, that there is some killer mountain biking back there! Below is the elevation profile for the bike - but this is an ideal profile. Realistically, ours is probably much more up and down since we got lost a few times :)
What a great day to spend my 26th!
Monday, January 29, 2007
I have great memories of last year's first ocean swim - mainly jumping in the water, not listening to Coach, body surfing non-stop, playing and laughing in the water as if I was 5 years old again. Having done some surfing in the past, I was able to acclimateto the water temp a bit easier than others, but nothing quite compares to the initial "open up your wetsuit and let the cold water in".
Being a mentor - this was one of the more enjoyable workouts - to see everyone else go through that experience. After us mentors had to do a few little surf entry/exit demo's, it was great watching everyone else jump in and splash around! After a few minutes, our Coach says "Ok Folks, it's a WETSUIT, so we have to get it wet inside. So open it up, and take in a bunch of water!!"
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
So good, that I am actually still on a high from it this morning.
It was one of those workouts where when you are getting told what it is, you are saying "uh oh"...
... when you are doing it, you are saying "oh man"....
... when you get home, you say "Man, that was AWESOME!"
I swam last night w/ the San Diego Triathlon Club, and courtney is our swim instructor, and she usually shows us who's boss. Another dude named Ryan showed up tonight for his first swim, and he seems to be exactly the same pace as me, so it made for a nice little competitive swim. Here was the workout (all distances in meters):
8 x 50m at race pace, 15 seconds rest between each
Main Set (odds easy, evens hard)
2 x 50m
2 x 100m
2 x 150m
2 x 200m
(note that there isn't any rest in between. Our rest is the easy odds. Sweeeeet.)
And since we had the 50m lanes tonight, we got to finish with:
6 x 50m sprints w/ 1 min rest.
Let me tell you - those sprints hurt, but felt oh so good!
1st - fast, hard, get to the other end, and you are breating pretty hard.
2nd - just about the same.
3rd - I started realizing that I was probably swimming these 50's like they were 25's.
4th - I confirmed that I was swimming these 50's like they were 25's. Once I would get to about 2/3 the way done w/ the lap, I noticed my turnover decreased. my speed dropped. I was feeling it. I looked over at Ryan, and he was doing the exact same thing. It literally was like we both had sails attached to us at the 2/3 point. get to the other side, and discuss what just happened!
5th - My calves were starting to burn on this one. I don't know how, since you probably barely use your calves when you swim. Get to the other side, and say "man, my calves are even burning I am going so hard!" Laughter followed shortly after from people in nearby lanes.
6th - oh man. uh oh. Here we go! It was basically a culmination of all of the above...
Reach & Pull.
Breathe when only necessary.
Touch the wall on the other side.
100 easy cool down.
head straight to the kitchen, devour food.
Shower, stretch, BED.
The ultimate sign of a good workout: Waking up the next day feeling mentally and physically great!!!
Sunday, January 21, 2007
Off days to me are days that involve absolutely zero training, or physical activity. Physical activity on off days to me is defined as surfing the 'net, sprawling out on the couch, getting up to get food, and just general laziness. Replenishing my glycogen stores would be another way of looking at it.
Saturday's workout was not supposed to be that tough, relatively. The 'advanced' group was supposed to do 3 repeats up torrey pines hill, out the 56 bike path as far as you'd like (5-10 miles, so 10-20 miles round trip), return back to torrey pines for another 3 repeats, and do a quick transition run afterwards. I did the first ascent in the easiest gear, second in 4 gears harder, the third in the aero position, and started out on the bike path feeling pretty good. I was treating the workout like a base building workout, so I wasn't really pushing it.
I had a good time chatting with people from the team on the bike path, whom I haven't met before, and enjoyed hearing the stories of adaption to the triathlon lifestyle. To most beginners, the thought of having bike shoes clipped into pedals seems dangerous. "What if I fall? or what if I dont clip out in time?" are the frequent concerns. Other than the inevitable first time of not being to clip out, they are much more powerful setup versus sneakers. As I was explaining to one teammate how to master the clipping in and out, and finally getting her to understand that the bike shoe/pedal setup is superior, not 2 seconds later did we look up and see a teammate fall over and off of her bike while trying to clip out!!! whoops.
I felt that I was appropriately dressed with arm & leg warmers, even though the weather forecast was again "abundant sunshine", it was only in the 50's, and there was some gusts of wind out there. I forgot how much of a toll the colder air can have on your body, and I underestimated my caloric needs for the day. I didn't bonk or anything, but I was certainly feeling it at the end of the workout. A bunch of us rolled over to chipote afterwards, and I absolute housed a burrito.
After my workout, I went home, showered, and got caught up on the first 4 episodes of 24. Wow. It was probably one the more mentally draining things I have ever done a couch. I was mentally exhausted afterwards. The show is just unreal people - you need to watch it. I swear if I had a HR monitor on, it would say "You are approaching lactate threshold, even though you are laying down. What is happening up there!?!?!"
Between the workout and 24, I was mentally and physically exhausted.
Sunday, I normally do my long runs, but my body was tired. So, instead, I went out to breakfast with my girlfriend, my roomate Greg, and teammates Dana and Nelson. We went to the potato shack in Encinitas, before I aptly devoured a "man hole size pancake", I actually saw Jay and Momo coming close to the end of the ever famous del dios/elfin forest bike ride. As the name implies, the pancake IS the size of a manhole cover.
Afterwards, I felt that my time would be spent best by enjoying the "abundant sunshine" outside and relaxing! AAaaaahhhhh.... the off day - gotta love it!
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Thank you everyone!
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
My bike is yellow, which makes it look even faster, especially when stationary.
Anyhow, back to the workout.... So, here's the kicker...
...spin class is outside!
I know, I know. Even though a few posts ago, I was on the verge of complaining how cold it has been in San Diego, but I quickly learned that no matter the temperature, spin class will make you sweat. I'm not talking a quick wipe of the brow, I'm talking near puddle formation on the ground below you - in 45-50 degree weather no less.
In the past, my girlfriend always tells me about how much she sweats in spin class - and I'm like "seriously, who wants to hear about how much someone sweats during a workout?"
I quickly learned that is a legitimate topic of conversation.
This workout came at the right time because I have been going through a little motivation rut, and this workout certainly kicked me back into gear. Big thanks to Felipe and Jay!
I am sure my legs will thank me tomorrow!
He has been on a short chemo plan for the past few weeks, and his body has been adapting to the chemo pretty good. This is especially good, since sometimes the body doesn't accept the drugs so well, especially the second time around. He will be starting 2 weeks of radiation (twice a day, M-F) next week, followed by a stem cell transplant. That certainly is a lot to swallow for me, but Jeff is one of the strongest people I know. Just talking to him, you can hear the strength in his voice that he will not be defeated. He has been doing his best to maintain a positive attitude, and it shows.
Stop on by his blog, and wish him well (through the comments if you don't have a blogger account).
The day started out cold (see post below), windy and cloudy. Then, shortly before everyone finished their workout, the clouds cleared. The sun made its way out. The winds calmed. The temperature warmed...
.... and the burritos were-a-cookin!!!
I had about 20-25 people over, and good times were had by all!
Note: never underestimated the ability of 20+ triathletes to consume over 6 lbs of chicken, 4 cans of beens, a vat of rice, tortilla chips, some of the best homemade pico de gringo gallo, and anything else you can throw at them!!!!
It could be worse, I realize this. I could live in South Dakota, Manitoba Canada, Los Angeles, or even still be living in the Northeast, but when I get in the car in the morning, and my car reads 33 degrees, along with "ICY" next to it, it's COLD!
I think the general perception of San Diego, or SoCal in general is that its always warm here. Although, that is the case quite often, its not always like this. We have low humidity here, which in my opinion, is like applying a windchill factor, when compared to more humid climates. When I was home in Massachusetts a few weeks ago, 45 degrees seemed warmer.
I also find the weather forecasting funny. Yesterday's forecast was "Abundant Sunshine". Today's forecast is "Sunny". Tomorrow's forecast is "Generally Sunny". What the heck is Generally Sunny, and how does that compare with Abundant sunshine, Sunny, and mostly sunny? The beautiful blue sky looks the same today as it did yesterday!
I guess that I do need to remember that weathermen in San Diego probably do get bored quite a bit, and this is their way of having "fun".
Saturday, January 06, 2007
Today we did a brick workout at moonlight beach in encinitas. In fact, we did many brick workouts. A brick workout is a bike followed by a run. This is a very race specific workout since we will do a run right off the bike at lavaman (and nearly every other triathlon in existance)!
The workout was 6 bricks of 2.5 mile bike ride, followed by a .5 mile run. So, brick #1 was ride 2.5 miles on the bike, get off the bike, throw on your running shoes, and then run half a mile. Come back, get your bike, and repeat. Simple enough. Probably the toughest part of the workout was running down to the beach, and then up the sidewalk hill to get back to the parking lot. The cool part was our tri coach brought a bunch of bike racks to simulate a race environment.
Doing a brick workout is not something new to me, but I did practice some new things for race day. In previous races, at the end of the bike ride before I get off my bike to enter the transition area, I leave my bike shoes on my bike. Its some what of an acrobatic move, but I just swing my right leg over the seat, and kind of balance myself and both feet on my left pedal leading up the dismount line. It helps save time, and who cares where your bike shoes are when you are running right? I guess spending half my childhood on a bike and doing jumps and a bunch of other stupid stuff kids do is actually paying off! Not to mention its a lot easier to run barefoot than with bike shoes & cleats on to get back to your transition space.
Some people are advanced enough to actually leave their bike shoes on the pedals when they first get on the bike after the swim. It probably shaves off a few seconds from your transition time since you don't have to worry about running through transition area with bike shoes on, then getting past the mount line, stopping, putting your leg over your bike, and then clipping in - which is really difficult when you are trying to move fast!! I was always intrigued by this, so today, I gave it a shot. I was certainly a little "off" in the first few attempts, but I think I got it down after a few tries. The key is to actually put your left foot IN the shoe, and with your right leg, kick off (the ground) to gain some momentum, do the acrobatic thing again with your right leg and swing it over the saddle (seat), and then somehow get your right foot into the shoe. This of course has to be done while moving, and not knocking anyone over in the process! Practice, practice, practice!!!
Monday, January 01, 2007
Here is the probable history and creation of the national polar bear swim, always performed on new years morning:
Some, probably intoxicated, person, some time between 12/31 and 1/1, some year (person 1): "Dude, let's go run into the ocean, no wetsuit, nothing! on new year's morning! It'll be fun!!"
Someone else (person 2), in response: "Dude, that's the stupidest, craziest thing! That makes no sense! No way!"
Another person, in response (person 3): "Dude, that's the stupidest, craziest thing! That makes no sense! I'm totally in!"
Person 2: "Dude, it's January, the water will be freezing!!!"
Person 1 and 3: "So what!"
I'll let you guess what I did on the first of January 2007 at 10:30am in La Jolla.
thats me on the right!
Nothing like 57 degree water to get your day started!!!!!
somehow, the term "dead sexy" comes to mind!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!
ps- Yes, after swimming in the 57 degree water, this is what I experienced:
Being home and on vacation meant major relaxation, and taking time off from training. Taking time off is just as important as your training say, needless, to say I was looking forward to it. It was also good to catch up with some friends from home and party it up!