May 31, 2007

Taper time!

It's been an easy week as I'm tapering for the Mooseman race this weekend. Essentially, this means taking it easy to let the legs and body recover and feel good for the race without losing your fitness. A little bit of swimming, biking and running to stay fresh without exhausting myself. Interesting enough, I actually feel more tired, I suspect it's because I haven't been exercising in the morning and thus I'm not woken up by the time I get to work.

I'll swim tomorrow morning, then a short run and that will be it until Sunday when I hit the Mooseman 1/2 Iron course. We're going to be leaving around noon on Friday and heading up to camp out for the weekend. The bike is all tuned up and I have everything ready to go. I'll post an update on Monday for sure, it will probably take a little while for the official results to get posted online.


May 30, 2007

R.I.P. Jon Blais

So long Blazeman... you inspired me, hopefully you can inspire others. More here about Jon. If you watched the 2005 Ironman like I did you remember what an incredible story this was. The only person to finish Ironman with ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease.


May 25, 2007

Swimming fool

Lots of swimming this week!

Started with the Cyclonauts swimming in Crystal Lake on Wed. and Fri, and swam in Suffield on Tues. Total of 9,000 yards for the week, that's a ton of swimming for me! The only negative is that after my swim this morning we went for a run, and I must have pushed a bit hard on the swim to keep up and I felt like barfing during the run.

I'll have to remember to go a little easy during the race next weekend so that I don't go into my anaerobic zone before I get on the bike. It's tough to come back out of that quickly and it can really hurt your day since it's impossible to maintain good effort once you are over the threshold.

1 week and 2 days to Mooseman, I'll be training hard this weekend, then it's taper time for much of next week.


May 21, 2007

Motivation and other thoughts

Motivation is a funny thing, sometimes it's easy to get sometimes it's hard. I have the Mooseman 1/2 iron coming up in two weeks, but I've struggled this past weekend to get the workouts in. My running has been weak, and I just can't seem to want to push that hard. Oh well, it's a bit of a down spot, but it will come back I'm sure.

I should be starting open water swims with the Cyclonauts this week on Wed. and Fri. Combined with Masters on Tues. and Thurs, that will be a ton of swimming for me at least. Not sure how long I will keep up that schedule, but I'm hoping to have a real breakthrough in the water if I can. I just have to make sure I still have time to bike and run as well.

Tomorrow I'm planning to run right after my swim in Suffield. The pool is actually right along the 10k course I raced last summer, so I think I will run that course and then head to work. I'm also thinking of riding the bike after swimming sometime from there, I would have access to some nice biking roads as well. I'd probably want to bring my stuff to work ahead of time and then end up at work as it would not be that fun to wear a backpack in the aero position on the bike. Something like this route, only in reverse and starting at the Suffield Academy

Hoping for a good week...


May 15, 2007

Swimming forward

After this morning, I'm over 11,000 yards for the month! That's almost as much as the total year to date prior to May. I can't say it's been entirely fun, in fact I'm pretty tired again today, but overall I'm pleased with the training so far this month. I've started to understand why coaches advocate a recovery week, as towards the end of last week I was pretty drained.

I've taken a day off yesterday, mostly because I wasn't feeling good at all, and I'm feeling better now. I just had not been able to get my legs back under me after the track workout last Wed. It does seem to help when I take some time to recover, but I still feel the pressure of making sure I get the miles in that I need in order to be prepared.

Long open water swims in Crystal Lake should start this week with the Cyclonauts, so my swimming time will increase even more. I'm concerned about how to keep up the cycling mileage, but we'll have to wait and see how it works out.


May 8, 2007

Adding up

Lots of workouts in lately, I'm starting to feel some overall fatigue. Fours hours total on the bike yesterday after back to back bike rides over the weekend plus a long run equals sore legs! I banged up my knee on Sunday on the mountain bike when my chain slipped as I was motoring up an incline. I fell forward and slammed the knee into the handlebar and bruised it pretty good. It's still a bit swollen today, and feels pretty stiff. It hasn't kept me from running and biking, but it's definitely harder.

My swim went well this morning, I got to do a little backstroke which seems to be tougher on the legs than the freestyle stroke. Then of course, the kick set came up which was just brutal since my legs are feeling so sore already. There was a much bigger group there this morning, two other master swimmers, and a couple more from the swim team. The pool was full, and one lane even had two in it.

Still feels like good progress, my worry has now shifted to how I'm going to get in some longer bike rides. I'm getting the repetition and base mileage, but my schedule isn't real conducive to the 6 hr plus rides that I'm going to need.


May 7, 2007

Monthly Summary - Excuse time

Well... I've delayed posting partially because it wasn't a great month. It was a big bike month, but the other sports were pretty week

Swim - 1 hr 3k yards - Ouch again, but swimming has now ramped up as you can tell from my posts
Bike - 463 miles, 27 hrs - Started commuting to work, and been consistently riding on the weekends.
Run - 40 miles, 9 hrs - Way down from last month, I think the push for 100 burned me out a bit.

Overall, it was decent with the increase in bike. I want to make that a primary focus for the rest of my training towards Lake Placid along with consistent swim workouts. As I've mentioned in the past, I've done some long runs already and I have no illusions of being able to run the marathon fast anyway. Biking should build my endurance, and then I can muddle through the run.


May 3, 2007

Swimming part deux

Swimming again this morning in Suffield... it went better than the first day. I was much more comfortable with what we were doing and was able to push a bit more. For example the last set was 25yards on 1:00 rest. I pushed pretty hard, and averaged around 19-20 seconds and then got some decent rest. The first 10 or so were pretty easy but they started to get tough. I did 24 total and I could really feel my stroke shorten a bit and I was unable to pull all the way through the last few yards. This was sort of an epiphany for me since I haven't done an organized workout like this before and I could really feel the different parts of my stroke. It seems backward, but getting tired and noticing how my stroke degraded really helped me understand better how to swim I think.

Monthly summary to come...


May 2, 2007

Very good read

One of my favorite posters over at Slowtwitch and the owner of Bikesport Michigan, a triathlon store wrote a pretty good editorial. It's about a kid who was overweight and struggled with self-confidence through school before going on to become a prolific endurance athlete and successful business man. Although the ending becomes obvious (he's the kid in the story) it's well written and in general a feel-good story.

It has a lot of parallels for me in my life, although my low wasn't quite so low and my high was quite so high, at least in terms of sports. Struggling with weight and my body image was ALWAYS an issue for me, and in fact it still is. I've certainly improved a great deal over the last few years and I don't let my weight define me as much as I used to, but there are still many days when it has an impact on how I feel. I remember being very self-conscious and shy as a kid and I think it took me a few years to break out of that shell. I contribute a lot of that to my (now) wife who really helped me become much more self-confident.

In any case, it's good to read about how teachers or others can help a kid overcome some of those problems.


May 1, 2007

Swimming High

That's literal and figurative....

First swim practice this morning, 1:20 minutes worth... my longest to date and first really :) It was a pretty good start, I was the only Master's swimmer there, along with one other swimmer from the coach's team. He said there are generally 3 team swimmers and he's planning for 3 or so Master's swimmers. It was probably a good thing this morning since I could get a feel for what he wanted me to do and how the program was going to work in general. It was my first "organized" swim session, so I was learning the jargon and how to do the sets. My arms are sore, but not actually as bad as I was expecting. Maybe I actually am in good shape?? I spent 1:20 in the pool and did about 1 and 1/2 miles or so.

Oh... and I've already decided I hate kick sets!


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