Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hey! whats a tabata you, ah?

whats a matta you, ah?

After 4 days of rest (yes, you read that correctly all you type A's - FOUR) days of rest (only 3 were prescribed - whoops!), Chuckie has re-instituted the pain train for yours truly.

I emailed him on Sunday saying "... I was looking forward to the time off, and now I am ready to get back on it. seriously. For the first time I think ever, I am actually looking forward to getting in the pool again." Which meant I got swim workouts 3 days in a row! Next time I will learn to keep my big mouth shut!

But that really isn't the pain part of the train you see. This week is the first time I get to do tabata sprints. If you don't to read the link, here's what you need to know: PAIN. A whole lotta PAIN.

Ok, a little more detail: after a very thorough warm up, do this over the course of 4 minutes: 20 seconds BALLS (if you are female, just take out the BS :] ) OUT, 10 seconds rest. So, for a grand total total of 8 times. I will save the detail of the pain for my correspondance with him over email, but let's just say that there is a huge difference in going all out for 20 seconds, versus the 10 seconds of beach sprints I was doing during my off season.

DAMN.

Other than that, things are progressing well on the training front. I am already feeling months ahead of where I was last year, and I have more pain on tap for the weekend! CHOO CHOO!!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Take a Hike

After a week of "adapting and embracing", I was pretty much spent come the end of the week. However, I was looking forward to sunday's "workout", which was a hike. I definitely welcomed it as a needed a chance to unwind (mentally), and being out there in nature has a tendency to just "do it" for me.

As an aside, Chuckie wrote a rather thoughtful blog post last week inspired by my amateurendurance.com follow the amateur video. This workout pretty much backs up everything we both said, and has probably been the best "workout" I have had in months. The timing was, as they say, impeccable.

So, I packed my camera, some food and water, headed over to mission gorge, made sure I had no plan, and set off on my journey...

Big ass paw prints. I should have put my hand down for comparison, because they were almost the size of my hand.



First destination...



Nice path...


Chuckie, kind of remind you of this?


The next destination after Fortuna's...


The view of the hike coming UP North Fortuna...



Where I was headed...



Vast


You have no idea how good this tasted...


Is it me, or does this trunk look like a dog/dragon with its mouth open?


What to do when approaching a river crossing where your shoes will get wet?

Take your shoes off! Ironically, these were the song socks I wore during a very wet IMLP last year. You'd also be surprised as to how many people ended their hike at this crossing.


What is it about just throwing a rock? Ever wonder?

video

NOT flat...


Also, be sure to check out primal fusion - lots of good stuff happening over there!

Monday, February 09, 2009

Adapting to Embrace the Suck

This post has been brewing in my mind for at least a week, and took a few days to actually write, so bear with me on the length.

***
I just got back from swimming in the pool tonight. For those of you in San Diego, you know what kind of winds we got today, and it definitely didn't die down by the time it was swim time at 7pm. During one of my sets where I was swimming into a head wind, I actually popped my head above water to see if someone was splashing me because of the water kick up from the wind. I swear there were actually swells in the pool! As my roomate would put it: "super gnarly braah".

For sure.
***

"The more you know, the more you don't"
-unknown

Back in the fall, when I was asked to attend an accelerated graduate program at UCSD while assuming a new role at work, the first thought that came to mind was "Just suck it up for 11 months and deal with it."

The next thought was "Embrace the suck", which is a phrase my buddy Damian and I coined last year to help deal with adversity, and when I was really picking up the volume for IMLP last year.

But this year presented new challenges in that I knew I had RAAM training, and I knew I had a coach who would not be afraid to throw volume at me. I knew trying to make it all work was gonna suck.

My roomates asked me months ago if I was going to be able to do it all, and I told them that I was just gonna hafta "filter out all the bullshit in life". They thought I did a pretty good job at it as it was (seeing as though I am more of a tenant than a roomate!), but I knew there was room for improvement.

As much as I told myself those things, there was an element of avoiding it. It's kinda like that feeling when you know something hard is coming, and even though it is completely unavoidable, you do everything you can to minimize the damage/pain - kind of like procrastinating. Maybe even doing what you have to do to just survive. I don't know - maybe some of you know what I am talking, some don't.

"Denial just ain't a river in Egypt".
-Twain (via Chuckie)

I am past the denial phase. I am done being stressed out all the f'n time. I am done with the bullshit. It's time to take everything in and embrace it. This is life.

Physically, I am fine. But mentally, I have been trying to find that new gear. The gear that I knew existed, but I was never able to find before because I simply didn't need to. I was looking for that new gear that puts you at a higher level to perform. The gear that makes the comfort zone a thing of the past. The gear that sets the bar for how you live the rest of your life.

I think I have found it.

A few years ago, my neighbor came over and introduced himself. After a little small talk, the topic of endurnace sports came up, and I ended up learning that he won the western state 100 mile endurance run a few years ago. He also happens to be a CFO, has a wife and two kids back up in the bay area. Oh, and he is completely down to earth.

There is a really good article in competitor about him this month. The article came out at a great time for me because there is a really good paragraph that rings true:

Cooper starts from a thesis that most of us have an inefficiency in the system. The key, he says, "is to squeeze as much of the slop out of our lives as we can."

The "slop" is on its way out of my system.

It's time to embrace the suck.

Bring it.

Monday, February 02, 2009

218

This past week, I put in my biggest week (ever, @ 17.5 hours), but really, the thing that was amazing was the 12.5 hours/218 miles of cycling I laid out.

Tuesday was 28 years after I was born, so I took off from work (as in, my employer), and had Chuckie put me to work. A solid 3 hour ride, with a transition run afterwards. I also hammered out a bike power test on Thursday (see my breakfast afterwards!), and a killer RAAM simulation ride on saturday. I started off with some RAAM teammates, but after we hit the turn around point at Dana Point, I was in a groove, and took off. I actually ended up doing another loop inside pendleton to get in my time. 95 miles in just over 5 hours - including warm up and cool down. Solid.

Average view during the ride:



What was even better is that I wasn't completely shelled afterwards. Probably has something to do with these muffins, and the soon-to-be-posted bars I put down (we're working on it James!!). My high fat diet so far this year has been working wonders for me. I am definitely a lot less run down after big workouts, which is great for me mentally. I love being "worked" in a workout, but not at the expense of being a waste for rest of the day.

Sunday, I headed down to chulajuana to meet Paul and Nikee for the Otay Lakes ride. This was my "Wildflower" ride (the day after a RAAM ride - crazy - I know). I let Paul and Nikee climb the honey springs hill, and I ended up doing my intervals on the main road. It was pretty sweet being out in the middle of nowhere with more cyclists than motorists! After another 50 miler, Paul and I knocked off a solid 45 minute transition run afterwards.

After that, it was relaxin and the superbowl. I am not a huge football fan, but it was definitely a sweet game. I did the obligatory overloaded on guac/5 layer dip during the game, and it felt nice just to veg for the rest of the day!

The doritos commercials were the best I thought, but I really dug this commercial. I think it's a pretty cheesy product ("G"), and it reminded like a Nike commercial. Bad ass.


Sunday, February 01, 2009

For my coach...

Chuckie likes to give me crap for doing videos instead of training. So today, in response to his whining about the difficulties of coaching, I did a video (two) while training...


video



video