Sunday, June 28, 2009

This Week...

This last week was a big week for my training. I had a lot going on at work and was worried that I wasn't going to be able to fit in my scheduled workouts but I suppose that I did a decent job. Wed.-Sat. I was in Kentucky for work and as I mentioned before, I was able to ride the IMKY bike course on my way back home (Sat. morning-mid-morning). It was an AWESOME experience. I was really worried about the hills and what they were going to do to me but I handled them pretty well.

As far as weekly totals, I'm not sure how long/far I went in the pool or running because I didn't keep very good track of it (oops). However, here are the weekly "totals" for the bike followed by a quick breakdown of the ride on Sat:

Bike: 3 rides, 08:23:29, 146.5 Miles

IMKY Course, 112.5 Miles, 18.0 MPH Avg., 41.2 MPH Max Speed, 92 Avg. Cadence, 120 Max Cadence, ride time 06:14:55

The ride: I met up with a couple of fellow BT'ers for the ride on Sat. morning (Garret, David, and Amy as well as Garret's friend Kenny). We took off at about 6:30 a.m. and started with a fairly casual 17 MPH pace. I was wondering why we were moving so "slow" at first but once we started hitting the hills I realized why you need to take it easy on the flats. The hills were non-stop, steep, and long. It was crazy but I absolutely loved it. Without overstating my own effort... I would say that I was definitely comfortable on the bike as well as the hills. The course consists of an out and back and two big loops through some really beautiful scenery. I was loving all the new sights and it kept my mind busy. The nice thing about riding a hilly course like this is that you are constantly thinking about how you are riding and you don't get lulled into a false sense of security. I really really enjoyed myself. After the ride we did a quick 30 minute brick run... well, for me it was more of a brick walk/run. I was feeling alright but the heat (it was in the 90's and very humid) was definitely getting to me and I didn't want to push it. I knew I had a long car ride ahead of me and I didn't want to either dehydrate myself or pull any muscles or anything that would make the boring car ride any longer. At any rate, I am feeling much more confident in my abilities now and am even more excited for IMKY. It's going to be a great event and I can only hope that the race goes as well as the ride did on Sat.! And for anyone who was wondering... yes, it was really really scary hitting 42MPH on the bike... fortunately, that will probably be the only time I hit that type of top speed on the course. During race day I highly doubt that I'll try going any faster than that (or near that) with a lot of other possibly squirrely bikers around me!

Alright, check back later this week!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Catching Up

Wow, I just thought about the fact that it has been a couple of weeks now since I have blogged. I figure now is a good time to give a quick update on what's been going on.

The last couple of weeks since the triathlon have been pretty busy. Gwen has been out to Oregon and back, we've done a lot of work around the house, and, of course, I've been training. Here are a couple of the bigger "highlights":

-swam 3200 M. in 01:10:00 at the pool. Felt good. They had the lanes at the pool set up as 50 M. lanes which made this a lot easier to do (less turning which makes me feel like a rat on a wheel).

-This Sat. I had a 03:00:00 brick. I rode for about 02:15:00 and was feeling pretty good. It was a lot hotter than it has been lately and it was nice to get out in the sun. I rode 50 miles and finished off with a 45 minute run. Definitely felt good when it was all said and done.

Other than that my workouts have been pretty basic. This weekend will be exciting because I will be in Louisville to ride the IMKY bike course. All 112 miles! I have to be in KY for work and it worked out that some BT folks will be riding the course on Sat. so I've hopped on board and am super pumped about it. Check back this weekend for pictures and a course report!

Wish me luck. IMKY is coming up fast and the Muncie Endurathon is only 3 weeks away! Time is flying by!
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Sunday, June 7, 2009

Ann Arbor Triathlon Race Report

This morning was the "official" beginning to my triathlon season.  Once again Gwen and I found ourselves on the east side of the state for a race.  The triathlon was held at the Pinckney Recreation Area just outside of Ann Arbor.  When we woke up this morning in Ann Arbor it was thundering and lightning and I was pretty worried that the race was going to be delayed and/or cancelled but by the time we got out to the rec. area the sky had cleared and it looked like beautiful weather for a triathlon!  This tri was a sprint with the following distances:
  • Swim- 1/2 mile
  • Bike- 14 miles
  • Run- 5 miles on the Potowatami Trail
There were just under 400 participants who raced the triathlon and another couple of hundred that participated in the duathlon.  Compared to the other races that I've done this one definitely seemed more competitive.  There was a strong showing from U of M's triathlon team, MSU's triathlon team, etc. etc.  All in all it was a really well run event (Elite Endeavors were the organizers and I highly recommend checking out some of their upcoming races) on a well put together course.

Pictured Above:  My wave coming in from the swim (green caps)

To break everything down I'll start with some stats.  My finish time was 01:44:25.  That was good enough to put me 14/28 in the Male 25-29 age group and 120/368 overall.  Here is a breakdown of each individual leg:
  • Swim- 00:15:57 (14th in age group, 134th overall)
  • T1- 00:04:14 (really long here.  I was having trouble getting out of my wetsuit and into my tri top... more on this later)
  • Bike- 00:39:43/ 21.1 mph (8th in age group, 54th overall... puts me in the top 15% of all bikers! )
  • T2- 00:01:42 (again, really long.  For some reason I'm very slow in transition)
  • Run- 00:42:52/00:08:35 minute miles (17th in age group, 159th overall)
A couple of interesting (at least I think) notes on the race and the above.  I was in the bottom 1/3 of my age group in terms of transition times.  Had I been able to cut 3 minutes overall (this should have been easy to do) I would have ended up 3 or 4 spots higher. 

Pictured Above: T1.  Wetsuit off, helmet on, having trouble getting my gloves on.

Pictured Above:  T1.  Why was I slow?  To answer that I'll ask another question... why did I feel the need to fold up my wetsuit and reposition it several times before taking off?

 My bike time would actually have been a little faster than the above however as I crossed the timing mat with my bike out of T1 I noticed that my chain had fallen off.  I took a little bit to get it back on and then get on my bike and take off.  My bike computer actually read closer to 22 mph.  

Pictured Above:  Coming in off the bike... feeling good.

Finally, my run... I missed a couple of the aid stations and was hurting a little (started to cramp) because I hadn't taken in any fluids throughout the race (outside of a couple of sips of water on the bike).  This was dumb.  I feel like I could have been a lot more comfortable had I gotten some water and this probably would have led to a bit quicker time.  The run was on a really nice trail and I was happy to have a chance to run through the woods and up some hills... made for a nice finish.

Pictured Above:  Crossing the line.  Feeling great!

Overall I'm really happy with my effort out there today.  I think I could have done a little better job overall with transitions, etc. and I probably would have cracked the top 10 in my age group.  I was super happy on the bike... felt very strong.  There wasn't a single person who passed me on the bike and I feel like I was definitely in that group of stronger bikers (I feel like being faster than 85% of the field is an indication of this) and that is for sure the biggest thing I can walk away with.  Like I said, it was a great "training day" for me and as always I learned more about the sport and what not to do/what to do.

Oh, I forgot to mention... I was one of 2 dudes who rocked the speedo only tri.  The other guy was in his 60's or 70's... I think he may have actually looked better in his.  Anyway, the Whisper Cycles speedo is pretty hot aye?  Hope everyone had a great weekend and thanks for checking in!  Later on...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Last Weekend (May 29-May 31)

This last weekend was a big one for Gwen and I. Gwen ran her second 10K of the year in Ann Arbor, and I got in some decent workouts.

The Dexter-Ann Arbor was Gwen's 2nd 10K of the year. We left on Sat. afternoon and headed to Ann Arbor where we stayed with Gwen's cousin, Christina, who was also running (she ran the 1/2 Mary in a very fast 01:44:00!). Sat. evening we were able to catch up with some of the crew from Wilmot... woot woot, and then it was off to bed (after watching the Wings win Game 1!!!). Sun. morning we woke up early and I drove Gwen and Christina to the start line where they had to catch buses to drive them out to their respective start lines. After that I worked my way towards the finish line and set up camp in the PERFECT spot for some sweet finish line photos... unfortunately, as luck would have it, I MISSED GWEN as she crossed the line!!! I still don't know how this happened but she finished in 01:06:00 and we were definitely excited! Post race Gwen went and got a massage (which I should mention was one of the many great "perks" of this race. Very well run. Huge turnout, lots of spectators, etc. etc. Can't say enough about it...). Following the massage we made our way back to the finish line just in time to see Christina cross! Overall it was definitely a successful trip.

After my ride/swim on Fri. I was definitely still pumped. On Sat. prior to leaving I went out for my "long run" of the weekend. I was out for 01:1500 total and my goal was to run negative splits. I BARELY did this, but was super happy with the workout anyway. I did a big loop along Lake Macatawa and towards Lake MI. It was a beautiful day for this with awesome weather. On my way out I ran 3.4 miles in exactly 30 minutes which put me at 8:47 per mile. On the way back in I ran 4.01 miles in 35 minutes which is 8:43 per mile. Add in the time I took to stop and buy a gatorade along the way and you get my 01:15:00. Despite the fact that the "negative" in my negative splits was so small that it was almost non-existent, I was happy to have it. By the time I showered, packed, and ate... we were ready to go.

Sun. when we got home from Ann Arbor I was dead tired. Gwen and I both fell asleep on the couch until like 6 pm. I was pretty bummed at that point b/c I had a 03:00:00 Brick planned and figured I would scrap it. BUT I decided that I needed to get it in so to make it more "efficient" I set up the bike on the trainer and decided to do the run on the treadmill. It worked awesome! I put in a big effort and my reward was how great I felt post-workout. I even did some simulated climbing which really felt great (about 25 minutes worth when it was all said and done). I felt awesome on the run (which was 30 minutes long... after 2 1/2 hours on the bike).

So, that was the weekend in a nutshell. My first official triathlon is this upcoming weekend in Ann Arbor and I'm super excited for it. Check back this week as I have a couple of "new" workouts which should be interesting.

Thanks for all the support. Hope everyone is doing well.

Later on...
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