Monday, 18 June 2012 14:55

Ironman Arizona Week 2

Ironman Arizona training is now into its third week and today (Monday June 18th) I can say I had the first good swim of the entire cycle to date.  For some reason my swim has been nothing but a fight between me, the water and my brain.  My body wants to cooperate but my head keeps fighting me about it.  I haven't been dreading the swim but there has been some trepidation about getting into the water. Today that changed.  I told myself that even though it called for threshold pace swims to just swim. Don't worry about the clock and just swim.  It worked as I wasn't fighting myself or my head and my times were reasonable.  Some I could be proud of and really something to build on. This past weekend I rode the CompuTrainer to the IMAZ course and over three hours I got in 58 miles.  I felt good and pushed my heart rate on the way out and recovered on the way back.  I think this will become a once a month ride to test my endurance on the course and see where I am at. Here are the stats for the first two weeks: [caption id="attachment_6083" align="aligncenter" width="300"]IMAZ_training_Ironmanarizona_triathlon 2 Weeks In And Many More To Go[/caption]   A video capture of the first two weeks.  Don't worry it is short and that is how I plan on keeping them from here on out:
Thank You For Watching And Reading
Published in Train
Ironman Texas training is in taper mode now and as I heard on Sunday......DOWN THE STRETCH THEY COME...... That is how I feel right now.  I am coming down the home stretch to the finish line.  This training cycle has taught me so much about who I am and what I can accomplish.  It has taught me how to rely on others for help when needed.  It has taught me that I have the absolute best partner in the world in Karen.  It has taught me that 'It's OK' no matter what it is.  Life isn't perfect and neither is a training cycle for an Ironman race.  My Type A - Ultra Competitive persona doesn't want to believe that but it is. Now as we enter Week 2 of 3 for taper I cannot say for sure that all the hay is in the barn.  I don't know that because I have never been through a training cycle for an Ironman.  I have trained for 3 Half-Ironman and also for 3 Marathons.  When those were nearing their taper I was done training and just wanted it to be over. I don't feel that way right now about Ironman.  I feel strong and confident.  I feel prepared physically and to a lesser degree mentally.  I am saying that not because I don't think I can do it, but because I want to know my race plan inside and out.  I want to know my fueling plan inside and out.  Do I know it already?  Yes I do, but I want it to roll of my tongue as easily as my social security number.  I want it committed to memory so that if I am 5 minutes faster or slower than my goal time for that discipline that I forget that and move onto the next discipline. There will be surprises on the course come May 19th, but I want to know my plan so well that the only thing that happens when that surprise is taken care of that I get back to my plan.  I am breaking it down into little pieces and parts so as not to be overwhelmed by the enormity of what is going to take place.  I cannot focus on others or what their concerns are for they are not mine.  My one and only concern is to finish no matter what the day throws at me. I am staring out my dining room window and I can envision that walk to the swim start.  The running to the mount line.  The dismount line and seeing Karen, Lesley, Shannon, Jeff and many others in T2.  Running the 3 loops of the marathon and seeing them all over and over and over again and gaining momentum and strength from their encouraging words even if I look like diddly-poo (Jim Mora anybody?) In a few days I will run my goals post and have a great giveaway to go with it so be sure to check it out.  Look for it on Thursday. Thank you for reading and watching my video of Weeks 19 and 20. Week 19:
  • Swim: 5.1 miles
  • Bike: 223.3 miles
  • Run: 20.4 miles
Week 20:
  • Swim: 4.8 miles
  • Bike: 115.5 miles
  • Run: 21.97 miles
  • Swim: 100.5 miles
  • Bike: 2536.7 miles
  • Run: 566.6 miles
Published in Train
Tuesday, 24 April 2012 14:02

Ironman Texas - Weeks 17 and 18

Ironman Texas is now less than one month away.  It is a day I have been preparing for nearly a year.  I remember the feeling of euphoria and fear when I hit the register button and they processed my credit card.  The adrenaline coursed through my veins like a runaway train.  It was unbelievable to have that feeling and in a moment it was gone.  The questions arose as to whether or not I could do this.  The questions arose as to how fast I could do it.  The questions arose about training and hydration and nutrition.  I remember one sentence that Jeff Irvin wrote to me about Ironman and it went like this:  Ironman Is A Different Beast. At the time I had no clue what he was talking about.  At that same time I thought that anybody can jump right into training for an Ironman and be ok, but my thoughts have changed in the past 18 weeks.  I realize what Jeff was saying back then.  This event is completely different from anything else I have ever trained for.  I have run 3 marathons and raced 3 Half-Ironman plus countless half-marathons, Olympic and Sprint distance triathlons but nothing compares to the blood, sweat and tears you put into Ironman training. These past two weeks have been peak weeks for me.  I never thought that I would be able to train as much as I did and still feel the way I do.  I have a ton of energy and I can thank the proper recovery, diet, hydration and wise training.  I learned from the Las Vegas marathon that you cannot go 100% (that 110% thing is total non-sense because you can only give 100% -- I will not argue this point....I'm right!) all the time.  You have to change your paces, listen to your body, check your heart rate.  It's a science this Ironman thing.  It as about pushing when you must but staying in control all the time.  It is knowing your sweat rate, knowing how many calories you need, knowing what is you aerobic heart rate and your lactate threshold. I have learned these things and yet they change.  I thought that after Week 17, where I trained for 20 hours and 42 minutes, that I could not do anymore than that.  Then Week 18 came and I trained for 22 hours and 30 minutes.  I am into Week 19 and I should be close to the 20 hour mark again and then I head into taper mode.  If somebody had told me that I would be training for 20+ hours in a week I would have thought that they were crazy but here I am going into my third week in a row at that level and I love it.  That is how Iroman is a different beast.  I never trained for 20 hours in a week for a marathon of half-ironman but my thoughts about stand alone marathons are this right now:  HATE 'EM.  I had my body so beat up heading into Vegas and coming out of Vegas that my first words to Karen after I was done were:  I'm never running a stand alone marathon again.  This Ironman training cycle teaches you a lot about you and your body.  It beats you up but in a gentle way it seems. In less than 4 weeks I will have raced Ironman Texas and will be ready to face another training cycle for Ironman Arizona.  Let's Do This! Mileage: Overall:
  • Swim: 90.6 miles
  • Bike: 2198.0 miles
  • Run: 524.2 miles
Week 17:
  • Swim: 7.2 miles
  • Bike: 152.3 miles
  • Run: 40.1 miles
Week 18:
  • Swim: 6.6 miles
  • Bike: 199 miles
  • Run: 42.3 miles
Thank You For Watching
Published in Train
Tuesday, 06 March 2012 19:24

Ironman Texas Training - Week 11?

Ironman Texas training is 11 weeks down.....I think!  I can't keep track but I think that is the right number.  Last week was a huge week and break through week for me. Training last week took up a total of 17.5 hours of my life and I loved every minute of it.  I am thankful that the zombie apocalypse did not happen until Monday when I could barely move my legs because of the 92 mile ride followed by 30 minute lactate threshold run I did the day before.  That ride was the longest ride of my 'career' and I smiled the entire time.  I was on a large portion of the Ironman Texas course and it is no longer as daunting as it once seemed.  I managed to ride the course at a 19.5 mph clip and felt strong.  My hydration and nutrition were spot on with 95% (guesstimate) liquid nutrition and 5% (Thank You HoneyStinger) coming from solid foods. When I got home though is when the zombie hit.  I had to drive back from Conroe, Texas after that ride and it took me nearly 3 hours and when I landed I packed up my gear for the Monday workout so when 830p hit I was done.  Cooked.  There was no moving.  It was to the point that Karen practically dragged me into bed. Monday rolled around and getting in the water for what I figured would be a recovery swim was not true.  That was a session of yard after yard after yard of race pace swimming.  If you have heard it before I am going to say it again:  Ironman training is hard work. There are rewards though.  Like knowing you can ride 92 miles at 19.5 mph.  Like knowing that you can throw down a 30 minute run right after that and cover 3.7 miles at an 8:00/mi pace.  Like knowing that the next day when you get in the water you can still hit your race pace times.  That is what Ironman training has done for me.  My confidence is sky-high right now and I need to bring myself back to earth as there is this 'little' race called 70.3 Ironman San Juan in two weeks that I need to be focused on. The numbers to date are: Weekly:
  • Swim - 5.5 miles
  • Bike - 164.3 miles
  • Run - 30.5 miles
  • Swim - 23.2 miles
  • Bike - 476.7 miles
  • Run - 83.0 miles
Ironman Texas Training:
  • Swim - 56.7 miles
  • Bike - 1278.3 miles
  • Run - 296.7 miles
Thank you for watching.
Published in Train
Tuesday, 13 March 2012 16:23

Ironman Texas Training - Week 12

Ironman Texas Training is pretty close to half-way done I guess.  The race is on May 19th and if we include two weeks of taper for it that means that means that 12 weeks out of 23 are done.  That is nuts and awesome at the same time.  I have been pulling myself back a lot to remember that 70.3 San Juan is this weekend and that my focus needs to be on that race and not what lies ahead in The Woodlands. This past week was a low volume week as taper kicked in over the weekend with a lot less time training (4 hours total on the weekend which is less than the bike ride I did last Sunday.)  The week was a lot of speed work so the volume numbers are down but the intensity was taken up quite a bit. I am ready for San Juan.  I have my goals etched in my head for each discipline and while they may be just outside of reach I think that with the proper mental pushing I can get my body to do what it needs to do to get there.  As they say.....that which does not kill me will only make me stronger.  I have put the time and work and energy into getting ready for this 70.3 and come Sunday it will be time to unleash the beast within. I am going to be wearing Bib #994 (which I cannot figure out a good rationale behind the number but will before the gun goes off) and if you are interested in tracking me be sure to follow Karen through her Twitter handle @theladybaha.  She will be using an App on her iPhone that is said to be more up-to-date and quicker than Ironman Live. Here are the numbers for the week and overall: Week 12:
  • Swim: 4.89 miles
  • Bike: 81 miles
  • Run: 21.2 miles
  • Swim: 60.1 miles
  • Bike: 1356.9 miles
  • Run: 333.6 miles
  Lastly, I am doing a giveaway of the book You Are An Ironman.  You can read my review of the book here and if you so choose you can enter through the comments by leaving the following comment:  Yes, Enter Me Into The Random Drawing To Win 'You Are An Ironman'

** Contest will be open until 5pm CST on 3/23/2012 **

Thank You for Watching The Video
Published in Train
Tuesday, 10 April 2012 15:11

Ironman Texas Training Video Blog

Ironman Texas training has clearly entered into the 'man this is hard' world.  The workouts have increased in duration.  The workouts have increased in intensity.  The workouts have pushed and pulled me to areas I never thought were imaginable. Let's take the last three days (not including today) as an example:
  • Saturday:  100.2 miles on the bike followed by 3.5 miles of running (5 hours 51 minutes)
  • Sunday: 17.75 miles of running (2 hours 45 minutes)
  • Monday: 3300 yards of swimming (1 hour 6 minutes)
  • Monday: 15.36 miles of running (2 hour 30 minutes)
  • Total:  1.88 miles of swimming, 100.2 miles of biking, 36.6 miles of running (12 hours 9 minutes)
So today when I originally thought my training was a 1 hour trainer ride at aerobic capacity followed by 1 hour of running at lactate threshold I held my breath.  When I woke up and checked my training to see that it was 2 hours of riding at aerobic capacity I was happy.  The thought of running for an hour after running nearly 37 miles scared the living you know what out of me.  Now that I had today to not push myself I am prepared to do this run tomorrow.  I am actually looking forward to it as my legs will have had the opportunity to recover. Also, in regards to training I am also doing the weekend workouts at times that are reflective of where I should be on the course when that sport comes up.  So on Saturday I started my ride at 8am and rode through that part of the day to see how I would react to the temperatures and to practice my nutrition and hydration plan.  I will say that it worked perfectly as I was never hungry and only peed on the bike once. My 2 hour and 30 minute run on Monday was in the height of the Texas heat.  It gave me an idea of how fatigued my legs would feel at that time of the day and to again practice my hydration and nutrition plan.  I have decided to incorporate HoneyStinger waffles every two hours along with Herbalife 24 Prolong and First Endurance Liquid Shot (Kona-Mocha is their newest flavor).  These three products have served me very well in the last three days.  Of course I will also take water off the course on the bike and the run. Lastly, my plan to walk 30-45 steps every mile of the run was practiced yesterday and it worked great.  My splits did slow down but not as considerably as I would have thought had I tried to run the entire time.  Here are the splits from the run yesterday:
  • Mile1: 9:15; 130bpm; Max: 146bpm
  • Mile2: 9:07; 139bpm; Max: 148bpm
  • Mile3: 9:30; 142bpm; Max: 149bpm
  • Mile4: 9:48; 149bpm; Max: 155bpm
  • Mile5: 9:28; 147bpm; Max: 153bpm
  • Mile6: 9:02; 148bpm; Max: 154bpm
  • Mile7: 9:12; 150bpm; Max: 155bpm
  • Mile8: 9:06; 144bpm; Max: 151bpm
  • Mile9: 9:43; 149bpm; Max: 158bpm
  • Mile10: 9:47; 143bpm; Max: 149bpm
  • Mile11: 9:41; 144bpm; Max: 151bpm
  • Mile12: 10:03; 141bpm; Max: 150bpm
  • Mile13: 11:23; 141bpm; Max: 153bpm (treated this mile as the special needs bag and did not stop my watch for the consumption of water)
  • Mile14: 10:21; 142bpm; Max: 149bpm
  • Mile15: 10:38; 141bpm; Max: 150bpm
  • .327mi: 3:38; 145bpm; Max: 151bpm
You can clearly see where I was running uphill with these splits but overall I was quite happy to be running these splits with that simple walk break in it. Now onto the data that all you TriGeeks love to look at and crunch: Overall Training for Ironman Texas:
  • Swim: 76.8 miles
  • Bike: 1847.0 miles
  • Run: 441.8 miles
Weeks 15 and 16 combined:
  • Swim: 7.3 miles (not a lot of swimming due to taking nearly a week off because of the bike crash - wound are healing very well.)
  • Bike: 317.8 miles
  • Run: 50.9 miles
Published in Train
Tuesday, 31 January 2012 13:54

Ironman Texas Training VLOG - Week #6

Ironman Texas training for Week #6 was certainly the first step in a new direction.  The rubber met the road this week with a swing from fantastic to craptastic and back again a few times.  I was emotionally and physically spent after this week and that let me know that we are about to get to work FOR REAL! Numbers to date are:
  • Swim:  29.6 miles (3% of total miles)
  • Bike:    689 miles (76% of total miles)
  • Run:    189 miles  (21% of total miles)
  • Total Miles:   907.6
  • Swim:  19 Hours (24% of total hours)
  • Bike:    36 Hours (45% of total hours)
  • Run:    25 Hours  (31% of total hours)
  • Total Hours:   80.5 Hours
Published in Train
Tuesday, 24 January 2012 15:04

Ironman Texas Training VLOG - Week #5

5 weeks of training are done and in the books.  My first reaction to this is:  Holy $h*t this is going by fast and will I be ready for the 140.6 come mid-May.  My second reaction is:  This has been a lot of fun and I'm learning more and more about my body everyday and that can never be taken away from me. This training has been completely different for me in terms of my mindset.  I want to get to the starting line healthy but I also know that it is going to be a long day and I have to pace myself properly.  With that I have been enjoying truly heart rate training and seeing splits drop while heart rate stays the same.  I am getting faster while exerting the same amount of energy and that means I am more efficient in my form. Before you view the video I want to let you know of two things: 1- I will be hosting a virtual race this year from February 6th through March 5th.  I am rounding up sponsors and have some great gifts for a lot of people.  This year's race will be for charity and that charity is Shape Up America.  I will be revealing details in the next few days so stay tuned for that. 2- CTER sponsors Boundless Nutrition was gracious enough to provide me with entry into the Dallas Rock N Roll Half Marathon.  I'm very excited to add this race to my schedule since I have never run it.  Karen has run it the two years it has been held and I have navigated the streets of Dallas to see her every 3 or so miles and cheer her on.  This year we will be running it together thanks to the folks at Boundless Nutrition.  When I say run together I mean it since this will be one week after 70.3 Puerto Rico and going out and trying to set a PR is not on the books for me but maybe getting Karen to a PR at this distance is. [caption id="attachment_5155" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The pie chart makes it seem like all I did was ride my bike"]ironman_texas_triathlon_training[/caption]
Have A Great Day and Happy Training
Published in Train
Tuesday, 03 January 2012 12:44

Ironman Texas Training - Week #2 VLOG

Ironman Training Week #2 is over and done with and I'm already on day 2 of Week #3.  I am enjoying the journey but to already be into the third week is sort of scary because I am trying to truly enjoy this journey.  That being said I am starting an offline journal as well with just one word per day to sum up the day before it starts and one to sum up the day when it ends. I have always said the race is the reward for the hard work and this is going to be more miles and harder (I am assuming) than anything I have ever done and I want to have memories of all kinds. Here is the Video Blog of Week #2:
Stats for Week #2, Overall and 2012:

Week #2                                Overall For IMTX                    2011

Swim                   3.1mi (2.1hrs)                     8.9mi (5.6hrs)                          177mi Bike                     110.6mi (5.5hrs)                274.6mi (14hrs)                        4208mi Run                     35.5mi (5.1hrs)                   83.07mi (9.6hrs)                     1287mi   Thank you for watching the video blog.  Constructive criticism is always welcomed so how can I make the video blog better?
Published in Train