Tuesday, October 09, 2007

2007 Emerald Pointe Triathlon Race Report, October 7th, 2007 (Lake Lanier Islands Beach and Water Park , GA)

The end of a season...

Wow! I sit here this morning at my computer, and it has finally sunk in. A third year under my belt, with many (mental) highs and lows. I think I am going to save most of this talk for my next post though, since it will be my 100th post on my Triathlon Blog.

Lets get down to business...


I went to go and pick up my race packet on Saturday afternoon, and sure enough, Transition was bigger! I think that this race might rival the size that Tri-PTC was this year, next year. SWAG bag was pretty good. I did not realize that Hahnsgrohe was a company that sold shower fixtures and other bathroom stuff. What an interesting sponsor. Oh and going to pick up my race packet was between job #1 and job #2 the day before the race. By the time I got in bed Saturday night and fell asleep it was after 1:00am. That means a bit less than 3 hours of sleep.

Oh, and lets take account of how many workouts I did between the 4 weeks between races.
0 Swim workouts
+2 Bike workouts
+4 Run workouts
= Almost no training for a triathlete!

I got up at 4:15am, and got everything in the car. My roommate helped me pack my car since he was still up from the night before. Come to find out many of my friends were partying Saturday night so late that they were either still up or just going to bed when I was waking up. I picked up Jackie and we were off to the race. I was so tired I fell asleep for about 15 minutes or so in the car on the way up there. We arrived about 5:50am, and then I got my gear out of the car and rode my bike to the transition area. The parking lot was further away from the race this year, which was fine, since the previous year the parking lot they used was right next to the run/bike exits, which was bad for everyone.

Brought my headlamp, and began setting everything up. Pre race fuel was a banana nut clif bar, some oatmeal raisin cookie from my swag bag, Orange Burst Gu, and Accelerade. I also had some water as well. Went to the bathroom the first time, and then came out to stretch and take in some more fluids. Then as "the call of nature" hit me, the most horrible thing happened in my triathlon experience thus far...


So I "answered my call of nature" by going back to the porta johns. Got inside and was about to take care of my business when I kinda slid on the seat. Now I was one of the earlier arriving athletes, so not many people had used the porta johns when I got there. Much to my horror, there was a reason why I slipped on the seat. It seems that someone tried to squat and "missed!" How you miss when the hole is probably 10 inches in diameter is beyond me, but it happened. And what is even worse, is that I still had to go! I am a guy, but that was the most disgusting thing that has ever happened to me in my life! I cleaned up as best I could, used almost the entire sanitizer spray dispenser in the john, and then ran to the lake (the only place where I had lots of water access) to clean up. I am done with this paragraph, I just cannot take it anymore.

Head back up to the transition area to grab my cap and goggles, and a few people commented that I went for an early swim. I half - heartely laughed and then went on about my business. Walked back down to the swim start site to listen to the USAT ref give the essential items out over the speaker phone, and said hey to my fellow Team Javelin race buddy! Swam about 100M to warm up, and then it was to the start line to begin the race.


I felt really good on the swim. I think that I am getting used to open water swimming, my times are improving, and I am not feeling uncomfortable in the water like I used to, which caused my breathing to be erratic. I started towards the back of the pack, and I regret it. This is a fairly new race (this was the second year), and it is not a USAT gold/silver/bronze event, and is not directly tied to any regional or state championship race. So as you can assume the average swim times were ratched up a bit. I bascially had to change direction and swim sideways to get to the outside, and then swim in the correct direction! People were breast stroking, back stroking, doggy paddling, etc. Now I don't have a problem with this, I just thought it strange happening the first 50M of the event, in the Men's 20-24 and 25-29 wave. I was very happy with my time, out of the water, except that the pad for the swim/T1 line was about 100 yds away from the water, and uphill. So needless to say that my swim time had an additional 30 seconds or so (give or take) of me running up "Mount Transition." Last year they actually had the mats about 10-15 yds away from the water, so although everyone's transition time was longer, it was a more accurate representation of the swim. Well now it is time to climb "Mount T1!"

Distance: 400yds
Time: 9:59 (it is relative for everyone, but matt location added about 30 sec to my time)
Rank: 28/44 in AG


I actually jogged up the entire hill this year, maxing out my HR, and passing about 10 or more people heading to my rack position. As I got to the top of the hill, I saw my Javelin teammate, Andrew, at his rack position getting his helmet on. My rack position was awsome!!! It was right next to the bike exit, so in both T1 and T2, I spent the majority of the time running without a bike and cleats in tow. Since I was not trying to break any records in this race, I decided to strap my shoes on, especially since the bike exit was a bit treacherous.

Time: 2:19
Rank: 4/44 in AG


Lets begin by reminding everyone that this was not an "A" race for me, and that I was here to do this race for fun! (No, I am not trying to have a pity party for myself, just to make a point) This course has short hills, yet there elevation grade is much steeper than almost all of the races I have done this year. Indian Springs had a few steep ones, but not as many as this race does. There are also two long incline grades, and the largest one is coming back into the park from miles 10-12. So there were two times during the ride where I purposefully slowed down because I did not want to overexert myself from lack of training. I was also having issues with the banana nut clif bar during the ride, so that was not helpful. I was supposed to take a Gu on the bike, but all I could get down was the Accelerade. I went a bit light on the mixture with the Accelerade, and I might do that more often, since it tasted lighter.

Oh and Andrew (my race teammate), DNF'ed a mile into the race. As I was riding by, he was about 10 feet away from his bike sitting there, and he saw me ride by. He did not have a happy look on his face. Bike did not look too bad, but he was cut up on his arm and knee really good.

Distance: 13 miles
Time: 41:35
Avg Spd: 18.8 mph
Rank: 14/44 ppl in AG


Again, taking my time was the theme, since I was not worried about this race. I wore socks this time, so don't worry about my poor feet. I still have not "quick laced" my new shoes, so I was wearing my old Asics. Took water on the run this time, instead of Nuun, so that I could pour water on my body if I wanted, as well as drinking it. I think for shorter races I am just going to work on getting the right nutrition pre race, and then AT MOST taking in one gel and some Accelerade/Gatorade Endurance on the bike. And were off...

Time: 1:21
Rank: 24/44 in AG


I remember this run from last year. 3-4% grade all the way out to about 1.25 miles and then downhill and flat until about mile 3, and then it goes back uphill into a flat finish. Piece of cake right? Sure, until I got to the uphill portion... I was pushing close to a 10min/mi pace at one point, and then I finally got it together, in addition to taking advantage of the downhill (like i did in my last race). My usual regulars that I see at every race passed me, and I think I just finished before the first female. Literally, like 5-10 seconds before. I finished really strong. My heart rate was getting into upper zone 4 by the second mile, and stayed up there for the remainder of the race. I ignored it. My rate of perceived effort felt a bit easier than what my HR was reading, so I went with it. My pace coming back in was close to 8:00min/mi. I feel like I should have something more to say here, yet I do not, this particular run was fairly straighforward.

Distance: 3.1 mi
Time: 25:49
Pace: 8:20min/mi
Rank: 22/44 in AG

Time: 1:21:00.00 (BROKE LAST YEAR'S TIME BY 7MIN 50 SEC!!!)
AG Rank: 17/44 ppl (38%)
Mens Rank: 176/404 ppl (43%)
Overall Rank: 210/677 ppl (31%)

Man! If I knew I was going to do that well, I would have shaved my transition times and not let off on the bike portion, and I could have gained 2 minutes. That would have placed me top 15. With that in mind, I am very satisified with my results!

Don't quote me on it, but I will probably post something later this week, as well as update my blog links and such, and begin philosophying and discussing things that may be next year. There have been some new and interesting developments in my life as of late, and it may or may not affect my season next year (I certainly hope not!). As for now, my focus shifts to the Atlanta Half Marathon on Thanksgiving Day.

When I get pictures, I will post them to the site.


Sunday, September 09, 2007

2007 Tri - PTC Race Report, September 8th, 2007 (Peachtree City, GA)


As much as I want to let you in on my time (for better or worse), I will go through the race report first, and then I will let you see the final time at the bottom... Please note I have been trying to break 1hr 20min for quite some time in a sprint distance event.


I had to go pick up my race packet first since Friday night pickup ends at 8:00pm. I don't know what they hell that Tri-Peachtree City is thinking when they do this. For those of you who don't know, Atlanta is either somewhere between #1 and #3 with the worst traffic in the US (I think Southern Cal and Chicago make up the other two). Can I say, AWSOME SCHWAG BAG!!!!! It rivals the Tri 101 series. And if you have visited their website, I can honestly say that they have the best schwag bag ever! Afterwards everyone went to Chili's to get there food on! I had a somewhat good meal of mostly protein and a salad, except for that damn skillet queso (I just can't get enough of chips, salsa, and dip). I also had a beer. While consuming said beer (Miller Lite), someone starting talking about Beer Pong. For those of you not familiar with beer pong, please visit this website when you are done. Even if you do not drink, you will fall in love with this game.


Well being both a graduate of the University of Georgia, and living the fraternity experience in college, I was well versed in Beer Pong. Needless to say there was no way I could say no to such a challenge. After dinner we went back to Matt's house (about 15 minutes south of the race event, convenient!), and began playing beer pong. My team won a game and then lost a game. Since I carry the team (based on my superior beer pong skills), if I am off, then we will lose, because there is no one to bring up the rear. After a couple of games, I had to stop so I could get my bike together and pack my transition bag. Matt brought home a portable breathalizer from his work, and I was the least intoxicated at .023 (just over 1 beer or some Listerine). Packed, taped, bungee corded, etc, and then it was off to bed at the early hour of 12:30am. Hey as my uncle once said,

"Hey if your parents tell you to be home early, then come home early. I personally think that 7:00am on a weekend is pretty damn early!"

I woke up at 5:45am, about 20 minutes after what I wanted to wake up. I was not too worried though, since I was only 15 minutes away from the race site. For breakfast I had 1 Nature Valley Bar, some Accelerade, and a packet of Jelly Belly Sports Beans. I got out the door ok and headed to the race site. On the drive there I consumed some more Accelerade and some Gu. The new Accelerade flavors are awsome, I got really tired of having the lemon lime all the time until this year. When it was all said and done I did not have too much time to put my stuff together in transition, since I forgot the that this was a championship series race for U23 in the USAT. That meant they started 15 minutes earlier than everyone else. I forgot my sunglasses! Fortunately the roads are shaded early enough that hour of the morning not to cause any problems. I spoke with a few perfectly nice strangers while setting up, just to pass the time. Then I headed over to the seeding site since they were about to begin the swim for everyone, and I met up with Josh Nickell and Robby Sprayberry. We all went to high school together. This was the third race (I think) I have been in with Josh, and this was Robby's first triathlon. Within about 5 minutes, I was next to be in the water (2 person staggered starts every 2 seconds)....


I think overall you could call this the most chaotic swim that I have ever been in. I cannot tell you how many times that I was either hit/kicked or I hit/kicked someone during the swim. Total melee! Puts Ulitmate Fighting to shame! I had trouble getting rythm since I kept running into people, yet I felt that I was moving through the water pretty quickly. The first leg and the last half of the return leg were not that bad, it was the middle of the race that was horrible (between the two horizontal bouys). After leaving the water I maxed my heart rate out going into T1, I wanted to make sure that I got in and out as fast as I could. By the way, Lake Peachtree was really, really nasty!!!! I cannot even begin to describe to you how nasty it was.

Distance: 600M
Time: 11:49:00
Place: 24/44 in AG


As I stated before, I maxed my heart rate out going into T1, basically sprinting to my rack position. This is pretty much the largest transition I have to go through, save Emerald Pointe (it is a long run from shore to the transition area and a steep uphill to get there). Everything was on ok, and again I wussed out and strapped on my shoes before I got on the bike. Other than the aforementioned factors, I was pleased with my transition time.

Time: 1:12
Place: 4/44 in AG


Hmmm, I will have to say that I was very happy about this leg of the race. There is a no pass section of the bike that takes up about a bit over half a mile when you calculate both the out and back poritons of the "NO PASS" zone. Once out of that area it was on. There was no such thing that existed on my bike except for the big ring! I passed Josh around mile 2-3 of the bike. He is always faster than me on the swim, but I make up for it on the rest of the race. The first half of the ride was overall slightly downhill with you starting rollers at the top of a hill, whereas coming back you were hitting false flats and rollers beginning at the bottom of the first hill. If there was a hill, I just geared down on my rear cassette, and if I had do, get out of the saddle. I think my max on my bike (which was actually faster than my fastest downhill) was around 35mph. For my bike that was awsome, considering the highest gear I have is 53x12. I had some GI issues during the bike that were due to my breakfast, so I was a bit uncomfortable and was belching alot. The Accelerade I had on the bike in my Aero bottle was awsome, and I did not fell the need to take the Gu I had on my bike, since my stomach was acting up. I only got passed by a handful of people (maybe 6 at the most). I did pass some people, but not as many as I had anticipated. The majority of people I did pass were going uphill though. I think that my hill skills are improving, especially ther rollers. Once I got to about mile ten, I increased my cadence and geared down a bit to save my legs for the run, but not low enough to sacrifice speed. Right as I was about to enter the no pass zone again on the way back in, I got out of my cleats and peadled on top of them until I had to dismount.

Distance: 13.00mi
Time: 38min 1 sec
Avg: 20.8mph
Place: 13/44 people in AG


After the perfect dismount, I hauled ass to my rack position. I almost missed the row, and quickly corrected my problem. I took about an extra 5-7 seconds in wiping my feet off since they were still very wet and covered in grass (the transition area was in a field). As I was about to run out a volunteer stopped me and told me that one of my cleats had fallen off the bike going into transition, and the put it at my rack position. I thanked the guy but I was really pissed that he stopped me, since all he had to do was place it where my stuff was, since he knew my number. I think what had happened was that I felt my bike jump when I was coming into the transition area, and that was my cleat hitting the ground attached to my crank, and then fell off. Shoes, number, sweatband on, water bottle with Nuun in it, and I was off.

Time: 1:20
Place: 19/44 in AG


This was going to be the make it or break it for my race goal, the INFAMOUS 1 hour and 20 minutes that has eluded me for a year and a half now. I got off to a really good pace for the first mile, and although my Garmin was beeping at me for being in and out of zone 5, my RPE at the time was more towards a 6-7. I had a brief "comfort zone slowdown" near the aid station, which was on an out and back section just before (and after) the turnaround of the 5K. When I got to mile 2, I began to crap out and the run kicked up slightly uphill. I needed some motivation, and so I found a rabbit to chase. That lasted all but for a quater mile, but it was what I needed, and it took me throught the steepest portion of any uphill area on the run. Once I got to the final .6 miles, I knew it was the home stretch and kicked it back up again, since it was downhill/flat for the rest of the race. I passed Robby when I was about 100yds from the finish, and he was just going out. I yelled at him, but I don't think that he heard me. Onto the Finish, and the times are below...

Distance: 5K/3.12mi
Time: 24min 29 sec
Avg: 7:54/mi
Place: 20/44 in AG


PLACE: 17/44 IN AG

Excited could nto describe how I felt. I called Wes, James my training partner, who realistically stated I would do a 1:18:30, my parents, friends who care about my triathlon life, etc. Everyone was proud of me, and I was proud of myself. I hung out awhile after the race to check out other results, as well as get my stuff packed and in the car. As I was going to transition, they told everyone to get out of the way, that the last person was coming into transition and that they needed to move out of her way. WHAT!!! I was very proud of this lady for being so determined to complete this event. I had time to finish, veg out, eat a bagel, 2 slices of pizza, and an apple, drink 2 bottles of water and sit down some more before I ran into this person in T2. I guess that is kind of like the pros in Kona who finish, go take a shower, eat and take a nap, then come back to cheer on all the people who finish before the 17hour cutoff time.

There will be some pictures to post in the coming week. For now I am going to get back on Athlete tracker and check out team raceAthlete and see how they are doing at IM Wisconson.


Friday, September 07, 2007

On the Eve on an Eventful (and long awaited) Weekend

This weekend is going to be good.... real good.

This is not to say that my three day weekend last weekend filled with the first weekend of college football (and heading to my alma mater, UGA, for the first game of the season) wasn't great either ;)

I remember just about a year ago (maybe a bit less), there were 3-4 Bloggers (Wil, Stu, Kahuna, Everyman and a few others) that decided to create an organization that focused on the seeming "Everyday Age Grouper."

Team raceAthlete

Anyone could sign up, and share memories, input, tri philosophy, etc. I will quickly admit that I am a tri geek, and an information tri geek at that! I cannot get enough of it. If they were to create a triathlon channel on TV, I would either apply for a job or pay for whatever TV package covered the channel.

Fast forward through the raceAthlete blog archives (as well as coverage on the Tri Geek Dreams PodCast), and there was to be a huge announcement. We all waited in anticipation as the time went by and then it happened. Team raceAthlete was to fully sponsor eight age group triathletes and send them to Ironman Wisconson. People entered, and peeps were selected!!! The eight of you (Stu, Roman, Bolder, Tracy, Brett, Michelle, Tyler, and Chris) have shared your journey and experiences with us since that fateful week, and I for one have thoroughly enjoyed reading/listening to your journey(s). From sponsored schwag and gear to team training trips and group race events, we were able to watch the progression of eight age groupers and what their potential would be come race day.

Well, race day is upon us folks!!! I for one am super exicted. I for one will be out of commission for the best part of the race (the bike portion), and so I will catch all of you on athlete tracker during the swim and the marathon. Good luck to all of you this weekend, we are rooting for you.

I too have a race this weekend. This is the third year in my participation of the Tri-PTC, a sprint distance event. This was my very first race. Although there are some really other good races around, I have an attachment to this race for nostalgic and sentimental reasons. I have improved year after year in this race, and some of my closest friends usually attend. Last year I had almost 15 people show up to cheer me on, it was really fun! Maybe down the road, I will switch up to a bigger race either in or out of town, but until my life changes gears, I will be competing in this race for the time being.

I am contemplating signing up for one more race, a race that I competed in last year (Emerald Pointe Tri - Sprint).

After that, it is the off season and training for the Atlanta Half - Mary on Thanksgiving Day.

Just under 23 hours to go. I geeked up for the weekend, how about the rest of team raceAthlete???


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

2007 West Pointe Triathlon Race Report, LaGrange GA, 8/26/2007

How to start? From the beginning I suppose.

For those of you who have actually read my blog (about 2 people, just kidding ;), you know that this year has not been my best year. Why? Because life happens. It happens to all of us. How does it concern this race report? Well, let's just say I was a bit worried going into this race. I have trained much more the second half of this season than the first half, but still short of what I set out to do (for the South Carolina Half I wanted to enter). Taper was a bit extreme, I think I completed 5 workouts in the two weeks prior to this race.

I was planning to drive down straight after work on Saturday, pick up my race packet, and scope out the entire course the night before. Needless to say this did not work out as planned, and so James (Badass duathlete and triathlete that is my boss at Wolfgang) and I left at 5pm after he got off of work to head down to LaGrange. We checked in at the hotel (Days Inn), and there was a glitch with the reservation. I find this really amusing since I booked the hotel online directly through Days Inn and not some 3rd party travel website. It was no problem though, and James and I hurriedly put our gear up in the room and headed down to the race site to check out the swim and the bike (we would not have time for the run since it had gotten so dark...).

The swim course had drastically changed due to the extreme low lake level instead of going around the peninsula, it went out and back like a V-shape. Also the last bouy (turn bouy) seemed way too far out, as if getting to the turn bouy in itself was 1500M. We later found out the next morning that it had drifted due to the current. We were very happy with transition, for it satisfied three things I like; small, flat, and direct in and out (there was only one main lane in transition and racks were on either side).

We scoped the bike, and loved it. There were two sections where it was somewhere between 2-3 miles of downhill = BIG GEARS!!! The rest of the course was nothing but rollers, and manageable ones at that. We then headed to some country buffett restaurant and loaded up on nutrition for the next morning.

James and I got back and immediately packed our transition bags and tweaked our bikes a bit (nothing major I swear). Wes called and said that he and his wife Dee Dee were on their way down but would not be there until late. He jokingly told me not to mess with my bike, that I was breaking one of the cardinal rules of racing in triathlons.... he he he:) After that we finally got settled down and went to bed just before 11pm.

Race Morning
Alarm went off at 4:30am. I cannot tell you how good it felt not to have to get up 1-2 hours earlier to drive to an event. I might just do this more often. James and I got our gear together, downed our morning fuel (for me it was two Nature Nalley bars, a handful of gummi bears, 1 GU gel, and lots of water), packed our gear back into the cars, and checked out of the hotel. I think that is the second shortest time I have been in a hotel. We took the freeway (which I had to research the directions, they wanted us to take the back roads through LaGrange on GA Multisport's website) and it took about 20 minutes to get to the race site. We walked in the dark just over half a mile to the transition and check in. James already had his packet, so he went in and I went to number pick up to get my stuff. Sometimes I hate how procedural things are. Think about it. Your hands are already almost full when you get your race number and goodie bag (if you do it the morning of the race), and then you go back to get "numbered." Then with your hands full they tell you that your number needs to be on your helmet, and your bike number needs to be on your bike before you enter transition. Needless to say, my helmet number fell off within half a mile of starting, and my bike number folded up so you could not see it when I was riding my bike.

Pre Race
After setting up in transition, I helped James with his tubulars on his bike (Xentis Mark 1 wheels), and then it was chill out time before the race. More water and what? No bathroom break! C'mon body! Be cooperative with me! Wes got there around 6:30am (I think) and told us that the lady at the hotel gave good directions except for one road she told them to veer off too early! He was kind of in a hurry setting up the bike, however, it seemed that he got everything set up ok. I introduced Wes to James and we talked for a few moments before heading over to the swim start. Got bit by a fire ant on the way over. Great, so this is how my race is going to be. I did a 200 M warmup, and I drafted, off a girl who ended up getting 3rd place (I think in female overall), just for practice. Got out of the water and Wes, James and I talked and waited until the race began.

The Swim
James was in the group behind us, and Wes started right in front of me. Staggered starts, two at a time, every two seconds. This was probably the best feeling swim I had next to Gulf Coast last year. No breast stroking, no stopping, no running out of breath, etc... It was a good feeling all around. Near the turn bouy I saw James pass me in the water, and I could tell by his facial expression that he knew he was passing me. I am ok with that. James' worst day is better than my best day ;) Oh No!!! Now I have to go!!! No problem, I just sped up in the lake for about 24-26 strokes and took care of business. I did not feel guilty since I started towards the back of the race and I was swimming wide to avoid people. My apologies to anyone out there who ended up behind me. Wes, James, and Renee were all ok since they either started before me or passed me. Towards the end of the swim I kicked like I was supposed to and felt good running into T1

Sub 1 minute !!!! Yeah!!! The cooler part is that I wimped out, usually I don't secure my shoes on my feet until I am on the bike, but this time I did it while i was in T1. Dee Dee was there to cheer me on as I was leaving T1 onto the bike course.

The Bike
I felt really ready for this portion, since I knew ahead of time what I was getting myself into. It felt kind of lonely on the bike for this race, due to the number of entrants and the fact I was one of the latter people out of the water. I wasted about 30 seconds (going slower) getting my Garmin on my wrist on the bike. Due to going uphill and not being in the proper gear I was not going to risk falling over for my watch. I paced myself for the first mile or so, and then went to town. The only thing I regret is not pushing harder. My max HR on the bike was only 177bpm and that includes the two small hills on ther ride. I can say for the positive though, I kept my cadence fairly steady and pushed when I needed to push. I think after what has happened in the last couple of races, I wanted to make sure I had some left in me for the run. Between miles 6.5 and 9 there was a nice downhill, and after making the turn from an area where we doubled back there was also another nice downhill. I did not pass too many people on the bike since I started from the rear of the race, however, everyone I passed was going uphill except for three people I passed going downhill. WTF is up with that??? I do admit I got passed once going downhill, but the guy was flying and probably averaged 23mph or more during the bike. Aid station was great, and with the aero bottle that James let me borrow, it was perfect. There were two men on the bike whom I played cat and mouse with and finally beat both of them with about 4 miles to go, only to have one of them pass me on the run. I was out of my shoes with about 100M to go and ready to get off. They were really big on wanting us to slow down before the dismount line (I mean like slow enough to fall off your bike). They also wanted me to dismount off my bike 50 feet before the dismount line, and I was not having any of it. They could try to penalize me for all I care I was staying on until I had to get off. I had a few GI issues with my Accelerade and GU on the ride (I could not finish all my Accelerade because of it). I also waited about an extra 10 minutes to take down my last GU. I really wish I would have finished the rest of my Accelerade, since I had some cramping issues on the latter half of the run.

Just a hair over 1 minute in T2. Was due to having problems getting shoes on damp feet and getting race belt, etc, everything else on. NO SOCKS!!!! More to come on this later...

The Run
After the adjustments I had made to my bike in the weeks preceeding the race and the results I had on brick workouts, I was exicited. No more cramping up within the first half mile of the run, no problems with heavy legs. The great thing about the run course is there was only a small amount of elevation and it was at the very beginning/end of the run (since it was a loop). I think there were 7/8 aid stations over the 10K distance. I averaged 8:45 for the first mile or two, and then I began slowing down. I knew I would not be able to keep up that pace for the entire run, but I had to try. Just after mile 2 I had to give a big shout out to a Tri DAWGS girl. I saw Wes about half a mile from the turn around, and he told me that I better pass him. That was motivation until I got to the turn, where I stopped to walk so I could take in some Gatorade Endurance. I did not take in my GU because of my GI issues earlier on the bike, and that was probably a mistake, since all I had in my bottle I was carrying during the run was 2 tables of NUUN. While good for electrolytes, bad for no calories!!! I began to cramp up in both my quads all the way back in, and I knew I would not be able to dial it up enough to get up and meet with Wes for the finish. I now had to work on finishing myself. There was a second area where I walked for about 60 quick steps and that was up a very short hill that just kicked up in elevation. I knew that I would not be actually running any faster if I jogged up the hill, so I opted to powerwalk instead. For the last two miles there was a female wearing an All3Sports jersey, and I decided that she was running just fast enough to be my "rabbit" for the rest of the race. I really need to thank her, or else I might have not finished as fast (and might not have finished in under three hours either). I finally passed her with about six tenths of a mile to go, and at the finish line she caught back up to me. Wes was walking back to watch me come down the final stretch and told me he had come in about 4-5 minutes before I did. Dee Dee was there to congratulate me at the finish!!! James had gotten done so long ago (finished in around 2 hours 22 min) that he went ahead and took his stuff back to the car and then came back. Wes, Dee Dee and I chatted about the race for a few minutes, got some food/drink, and chatted a few more minutes about their son's soccer tournament that was going on. James met back up with me in transition to help me carry my stuff out and back to the car. After packing the car, we walked back to catch prelimiary results and I was excited to see that I broke 3 hours, and that James finished in the top ten of his AG (7th in 40-44).

Post Race
My hat is also off to Team Sport Factory (and Jen Adley, I think she finished 3rd in her AG) for a strong showing, as well as my Tri DAWGS!!! If they would have been around when I was in college, I would have soo been on the team! Also a shout out goes to Renee, who finished 5th in her AG!!! Congrats to you all! Thanks for the pics Dee Dee! Wes you were awsome! And congratuations to James, although he is not on the blogging scene, he did great!

Only two small blisters on the bottom of my feet when wearing no socks. I will have to admit though, I was still wearing my old shoes, and not my new ones. This was because I had not put my yankz on my new shoes yet.

13th/18 in AG, 215/335(people who actually raced)

Swim: 35:52
T1: :53
Bike: 1:18:26
T2: 1:01
Run: 59:55
Tot: 2:56:05

11 days until Tri - PTC!!! Sprint race that was my very first race I ever completed. This will be my third year competing in the event. I think I am going to focus on threshold and speed workouts for the next two weeks since the distances are so short, and I also need to work on maintaining my speed during a race this short.

With respect to completion of my first Olympic Distance Triathlon, I really liked this format a lot. I feel that this gives you a very good gauge of 1/2 and full iron distance races, and you only need to train just a bit more than for a sprint distance event. I think I might change my format to include more of those next year, and be very selective if I do any sprint races at all next year. I loved this course as well!

I am ready to read all the posts from all the races that happened this weekend! I have already read a few, and I am waiting on some peeps that finished IM Louisville.


Saturday, August 18, 2007

Small Adjustments = Improvements, and Messed up New Shoes


This is going to be a short post, mostly due to the fact that I don't feel like putting in all of my workout data today, and I am going to try and update my blog tomorrow to update my sidebar to include new blogs I visit, training data, etc...
Swam once for 1500M (bad Andy, more swimming), rode my bike twice (once being a brick) and ran once with James. My "small adjustment," which I eluded to in my title, was to move my seat forward as far as possible on my bike, and then bring the seat up about a quarter inch. Now I am by no means a professional bike fitter, but the results were awsome! My legs felt better on the bike (especially when aero), and on my brick workout, I was having to force myself to slow down and run 8:30/mi splits!!! No cramping or problems getting going on the run!!!

Speaking of running, which leads into my new shoes.
I bought new shoes. I think they are the Saucony Progrid Trigon Guide. Tuesday I was out with James for a 5 mile run, and here is what happened (when you have new shoes paritally broken in with no socks.....


Saturday, August 11, 2007

Catching up on what is happening...

Hello All,

Nice to finally be posting again. I am coming in on my 100th post, and hopefully I can come up with something good like a summary/flashback/etc to cover how I started, where I have been, things of that sort.

This was a bad week for me, due to my work schedule. Now yes, I did set my work schedule so that I would know when I was working, but the way the week went, and other (extracirricular activites I participated in) things that occured, it shot my training week to hell. I got some stuff done last weekend, but it is on my Garmin (which I dont have with me to report), and I ran a tempo run on my new shoes (4 miles) on Wed night in the unbearable heat after I got home from work. I think I like my new shoes, but I will need to put a few more miles on them before I make my final decision. I am also going to try and get all the graphs up this weekend, so that I can create some kind of training log, and so I can quantify what I am actually doing. Wes gave me some HTML to update my blog.

Speaking of Wes, his wife is participating in the Acworth (Women's Only) Triathlon tomorrow morning. I am going to go, and I think that Jackie is coming with me, I am not sure. There are a few other people that will be there as well, both watching and participating. It will be my first tri that I watch/volunteer and not actually participate in. Well, really it is not that hard to fathom, since it is a women's only event, but just to be able to look at it from the participant's side, as well as being a cheerleader, will be pretty cool.

Training today and tomorrow, and getting my schedule set up for next week.

That is all I have for now.


Friday, July 27, 2007

Workouts, and I promise that technology works! (As long as you use it right)...

Ok lets get the down and dirty details out of the way, with the exception that I did not bring my Garmin with me, so I will have to approximate the data.

07/26/2007 (Thursday)
Workout: Bike - Austell to Marietta Loop
Distance: ~ 26 miles
Time: 1:40:00-1:45:00
RPE: 6-9

07/27/2007 (Friday)
Workout: Run - Silver Comet Trail
Distance: 4.01 mi
Time: ~26:30
RPE: 7

The title of my blog now leads me into my short story. I was about 40-45 min into my workout, and sometimes, if a light at an intersection is long enough, I will stop my watch. Well I did that, and then the light was green, and I began my ride again. Let me add, without hitting the start button again. Did not see this until almost two miles down the road when I went to check my time. Now there is a feature on the Garmin where if you slow down (either running or biking) to a certain pace/speed, the watch will stop for you, and not begin again until you are back above that pace/speed. This is to precisely fix this situaiton. Maybe I need to sit down this weekend and set that up. Speaking of which, I need to do a couple of other things with bike(s). First, I need to get fitted for my bike. I never really got fit when I bought it, and I tweaked it until I thought it felt right. Then I got my aerobars. You should see how far forward I am on my seat when I am pounding it. Second, I need to install the Cateye on Jackie's bike. She has been waiting for me to do so, and I have not done it yet.

Working my other job for the next three days, but at least I don't have to close Saturday night. I am working a special wine tasting that we are having, and although we have to bus and clean up that area when we are done, we should be out of there by 10:15p, rather than me getting out at midnight. (Let us not forget that I then have to drive 35min to get home, traffic is lighter that time of night).

I am soo pissed at LA Fitness right now. I know that is my fault that I am slacking on my swimming workouts, but it definately does not help when I get motivated enough to work out, and then the gym closest to me (takes me 3-4 min to get there) is closed for almost a week for renovations. The next closest gym takes me 30-40 min in off-peak traffic to get to, round trip. I wanted to go this morning, but I did not get up early enough to go, swim and then come back to be at work on time.

I think I will get the peeps together and try to get a lake swim in this weekend, possibly Sunday morning again. If I can get a swim in on Sat and Sun this weekend that would be great. I am excitied about doing the West Pointe Olympic Tri with Wes. I am kinda bummed about not doing the last Tri the Parks - High Falls race, but I will get over it. You have to be able to improvise in this sport.

I also got my email notification about general elections for USAT. The person who is in charge of my region, I have seen before, and I think that he is part of the Peacthree City Triathlon team. I would not mind having him on again another year if he is allowed to be.

I will get caught up on all your blogs this weekend. I know that some of you raced in IMUSA, and some of you are tapering for IMLouisville.

Paitently waiting for my next issue of Triathlete Magazine..... for now.


Wednesday, July 25, 2007



I am here. For the few of you who email back and forth with me, you have known what I have been up to. Last week was my week 9 in my now 19 week training program (was 20, and then after I started the program for my race, they rescheduled the race a week earlier this year), and I decided to make it a rest/recovery week due to scheduling. I only got in two workouts, and I worked every day including 4 doubles last week, three of which were back to back to back. Kinda like "wash, rinse repeat." Except mine was "Bank, Wolfgang, sleep."

I have some updates on my race schedule for this year. I have officially signed up for the West Point Triathlon that is on Sunday August 26th. I will be racing with Wes in this event. I had to rack my brain on how I wanted my season to progress with my last race of the year I am anticipating to be the South Carolina Half. My schedule calls for one Olympic race and one Sprint race in the latter part of my training program. There was really no other option as far as a "local" Olympic distance race. However I think this will work out really well considering that while I am having to reschedule my training by 1 week for my taper, putting the shorter distance race seems to work well with my taper period. I will follow up the West Point Triathlon with my regimented annual race now (this is my 3rd season, and I have participated every year), the Tri-PTC. This is a Sprint distance triathlon two weeks after West Point, and one of my more favorite local races.

Tonight was pretty crappy. I was supposed to do a late night workout at the pool, and when I got there, I noticed that there was no one in the LA Fitness parking lot. I went up to the front door and there was a sign saying that it was closed due to Renovations until Friday. Well that sucks. So I came home and made some dinner, and started watching some of Stage 16 of the Tour de France. Vini sucks!!! He is one of the better cyclists in the world. He did not have to screw up his career by cheating. Sure he might not have done as well, but just to be known as one of the better cyclists in history, as well as one of the better cyclists of the Tour de France would be good enough for me.

That is about all I have for now, I want to get some reading in before I go to bed, as well as watch some more of the Tour. If I can think of anything else, I will post it tomorrow.


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Rain, Rain Go Away (At least for my bike training days)...


Three out of the last four "bike training" days that I have had, it has rained. Now, as bad as Georgia needs the rain, it has all day and night to rain outside the few hours of each workout I have on my bike. Oh well, at least it keeps everything cool. It was probably only 70-75 degrees during and after the rain, and it would have been 85-87 degrees without the rain and humidity. Mallie jinxed me up here in Atlanta, I think ;)

There were only 20-25 people that were there for the ride, I think due to weather (c'mon people, a little rain will not hurt you!). James was out there tonight with me. Start was a bit slower, and this time I sucked his wheel going through the first hill. I stayed up with the group until the golf course, and then I began to lose them. As I was catching up with them through the first series of hills after the golf course, well, you know the "hill effect." And what makes it worse is that I am already a bit more cautious than the best riders there. Henceforth, the DROP.

One of the riders from team Cycleworks was in charge of the "second group," which I was leading. Well the funny part is that everyone behind me in the second (last) group decided they did not want to do the Oglethorpe Univ/Silver Lake area, so I was by myself. Except that the rider from the team decided to stay with me. We chatted for awhile, and I did not get his name ( I will next time). We traded places, and I think that when he got behind my wheel it was to let me set the pace and push me. When we got towards the last 1/4 of the ride though, I began trying to push the hills (not 110%, but more like 95%) and I turned around and he was not there. I got to the light at the top of the first ascent, and then he caught up. I did not say anything, but I was thinking, WTF??? The second ascent before we got to Chastain park (pretty much the final stretch with my dreaded large rollers). he got dropped. You must be kidding me. His chain must have broken or something. There is NO WAY this guy dropped. I finished up and James was waiting on me. As I was packing my bike, the guy pulled in and was talking to his teammates. I overheard, "yeah I have a Velodrome race tomorrow, and I was taking it easy tonight..." Well there you go.

With the rain, and not pushing it 110%, I finished in approximately 1:37:00.00. I am ok with that.

I will hopefully be signed up for a race in August after the weekend is over, and I have it narrowed down to two races. I am kind of excited. I also need to sign up for South Carolina half by the end of the month to get around the price increase. Crap. Yet another month of spending. IT NEVER ENDS.

In other news (on the topic of spending) I need to get new work pants for Wolfgang Puck. Holes are starting to form in the seams (in certain places) and they are just looking nasty, no matter how much I clean them. I also have not bought new "bank" clothes for work in almost 2 years. Why, well, because I am a guy, and because it costs money. But it is needed. I will use some Clark Howard tactics though, and try to shop around and save a few dollars.

I think I am going to skip my Thu night ride to ensure that I get some more running/swimming in this week. I am only working Sunday lunch shift. This means I have ALL day Saturday to train, and then Sunday morning early and Sunday afternoon/evening.

I'll keep you posted. Let's see if it rains on Thursday, since I will be training, but not on my bike.


Monday, July 09, 2007

Weekend Events...

I hope all of you had a good weekend...

Short recap and then on to bigger and better parts of my post.

Saturday: Nothing - and there is nothing you can do about it :-b

Sunday: 50 mile Ride with Wes and his wife on the Silver Comet trail.

I got home from the Bank at about 1:00p on Saturday afternoon, a basketcase. I told myself that there are more important things to do rather than a workout, so I got some stuff done around the house, watched some of the prolouge of the Tour de France, and chilled out. Then it was back to work at Wolfgang Puck Express by 5:30p. This weekend at the restaurant was rough. They were high on labor costs, so they kept cutting people early (and of course it got busy). The HVAC broke on Saturday as well, so we were only running Air Conditioning in half the restaurant. Fun Stuff.

Wes posted to my blog earlier in the week wanting to know about working out at the SCT on Sunday morning (50 miler). It was supposed to be his peak bike workout before his taper (I think) for his Olympic Race in August. Hmmm, let me think.... yes! I must be crazy, because I worked a double with 5 hours of sleep on Friday, then a double with 5 hours of Sleep on Saturday, and then get up at 6am Sunday for this crazy ride. We all went a a training pace for the first 10 miles until Dee Dee turned around and headed back to the car, then it was soooooo on!

I don't know how Wes felt during the entire ride, but I felt like we were pounding it the entire time. It seemed like we were trying to make up for warm up time during the ride. I took in some nutrition during the ride in the way of Gu and Accelerade, and had some Nuun in my "water" bottle. On the way back in my legs seemed to be tiring, but I somehow found that extra bit of "oomph" that we all search for late in our workouts, and most of the time we do find it. We had another small group on the way back in the last 5-6 miles where we took turns pulling. At that point it was which group of us was going to hammer harder.

When we got done I told Wes I would call him later in the day about the swim, and then it was off to take care of cats and work! The kittens are hellions right now, and so you have to have paitence with them (which I had none of last night, I was exhausted). We were short yet again on Sunday, and so by the time I got off work at the Sauana, uh I mean very hot restaurant, it was going to be too late to hook up with Wes and Dee Dee for their evening swim. So I called Jackie to see what was going on. We went and got some dinner and then it was off to my sister's apartment to spend the night with the cats. I will say a definate positive was that it only took me 10-15 min to get to work this morning from her apartment, rather than the usual 45 min or more from Austell.

This week should be good.

There we go, positive mental attitude on a Monday morning, I love it.


Friday, July 06, 2007

Weekday workouts, My encounter with Get Fit Atlanta, and a bad time to take Excedrin

I am feeling somewhat recovered today. I'll go through the motions first, but without stats, I don't have any of them with me.

Monday was a track workout where my main set was a 6x400

Tuesday was the Sandy Springs ride. James came with me, and he rode with the front group. He said that they are very unorganized and dangerous at times compared to the Roswell Thursday night rides.

Wednesday was nothing. It was a holiday damnit!

Thursday I tried to get in some intervals on my bike, I only got in 4 and then averaged probably 17mph the rest of the ride. More to follow on this below.

Monday I tried going to Osborne High School again for my track workout. This time they had it on lockdown. I didn't feel like climbing the high fence. This sucks. I have payed taxes for years now, as has my family, and a portion of that goes to pay for the public school system. All I want to do is use the track at a PUBLIC SCHOOL. Oh well, there is another high school to try about 5-10 minutes down the road. Yeah!!! it is open! Wait, what are all the people doing here? Soon to find out there is a coaching organization called Get Fit Atlanta had there track workout that day as well. I just mixed in with the group, and did my own thing. I later that night checked out their website, and they are raking it in, if they have enough members of course. There were about 40 people there.

Tuesday, as I stated before, James came with me for his first try at the Sandy Springs ride. I know that this ride is easier than riding up in Roswell, so he should end up in the front behind a few people (only because it was his first time). I stayed with the group this time further than I have ever been before (getting dropped), and it was to my detriment. I ended up as a basket case for the rest of the first half of the ride, and finally recovered enough to finish in an average time for the entire ride. I am kind of sad for the entire group. The past couple of years there were about 10-20 people that we either as fast as me, or just a bit slower. So on those past rides there would be about 3-4 of us and then the remainder would be in the final group behind me. I think due to the pace of how the front group wants to run, people got demoralized and quit coming. This now puts me at the back. Not that I have a problem, however, this is supposed to be an 18mph recovery ride, and ALWAYS turns into a 20mph ride easy. Only reason I did not finish dead last this week is that someone wrecked in the Lake neighborhood.

Wednesday I spent the afternoon at my sister's pool (at her apartment complex) and imbibed just a bit. I then had to work. We stayed late afterwards and had a few beers, and then I went home. I had a bad headache, and decided that the best course of action would be to take Excedrine Migrane. Bad idea!!! I don't drink caffinated beverages much anymore. There was enough caffine to keep me awake most of the night. I was a train wreck on Thursday. That basically translated into my crappy workout last night. I just did not feel on. I did get some intervals in though.

This weekend is going to be rough. Double today, double tomorrow, Sunday lunch at the Puck, and then double Monday. Skirted my swims again this week. Bad Andy!!! I think I might have an open water for Sunday morning. If I get at least 1 swim in with my brick and endurance run this weekend, I will be happy.

Working this 2nd job is really wearing on me. When I first started, I was working 4-5 shifts a week making more money, and having a good time. Now I am working 3-4 shifts a week, making less money, and my attitude has changed at that job. I try to be as positive as possible (since it is a customer service oriented job), but it just leaves me drained at the end of the day. Oh well, it is a means to an end. Hopefully be the end of the year the majority of my debt will be paid off and I will not only have that money to save, etc, but I will have all that time back to do what I want to do. No more debt = New tri gear!!! :)

I'll keep you posted on my weekend, other than that, I am just going to read all of your blogs!


Monday, July 02, 2007

Recapping the weekend...


This weekend went really well. I did not double up on my workouts like I would have wanted to do, but that is fine. I had more important things to do, like hang out with friends, family, etc. Saturday morning I worked, and then went home and got some stuff done. Laundry, Cleaning the bathroom, cleaning the bedroom, etc... I was also waiting for the temperature of the afternoon to come down a bit. I also was in the hunt for a different running location. If any of you are ever looking for something different for the bike or the run, I think you need to choose these two websites out.

Map My Run
Map My Ride

I ended up doing a 5K from Kennesaw Mtn State Park over to downtown Marietta, 5 min break for Gu and Stretching, and then 5K back to my car at the Park. I will have to say, I probably should not have stopped for that short break (as much as I needed to stretch), since my lap average really suffered after that. I was taking it easy, so I was trying for 9:30/mi pace, and I pretty much hit that on the way out, but on the way back in there was a large stretch of road that was 11:30-11:45/mi. The last mile was flat/downhill, so I was able to get my heartrate back down and increase the pace faster again.

Sunday, I got up early (8:00a for Sunday) and I went to the gym to put in some laps. This is the one workout I have been slacking on lately. I did a 100M warmup, 50M worth of drills (just swimming on my sides) and then did 2x400M free drills. I did not time myself, I just did them as best as I could technique-wise. Halfway throught my second 400M I had to keep refocusing on what the heck I was doing. There was a lady who was in the lane next to me, and we were swimming about the same pace, so it was easy for me to see if I was off pace or not, from my RPE.

After that I spent the rest of the day down on the south side of Atlanta visiting with my aunt and uncle, and then my best friend and his wife. It was good to see all of them again.

This week is going to be pretty hectic for me. I will be working all weekend long, so I will have to get in over half my workouts during the week. I am also working at night on the 4th. Booo. The funny thing is that the fancy 4 star restaurant next door is only going to be open early in the morning for the Peachtree Road Race, and then closing promptly at 10:00a. We're opening at 2:00p and then staying open until 9:30p. Now you know at 9:30p no one is going to be there, because they are all going to be out watching fireworks and cooking out. They are going to waste all that money on labor and operating costs for the little money that they are going to make. I am sure Wes can throw his two cents in (since he is in the restaurant business) about how well as fast casual restaurant does on the holdidays (not well).

Oh, I also was up Sunday morning checking out the European Ironman Championship. I used to speak German very well, and now I hardly know any. I picked up some on what the announcer of the program online was saying, but mostly I was just focusing on the race. It was the perfect time in the morning for me as well, since Germany was six hours ahead. By the time I pulled it up on Ironman live, the men were in the last few kilometers of the finish. I was very suprised to see how far back Norman Stadler and Faris Al-Sultan ended up in the race. I guess every race cannot be your best race. However the duel between Nicole Leder and Andrea Brede was awsome!!! Just like a close superbowl or BCS championship game, this finish was great to watch.

Workout tonight, and then two tomorrow. If I can get two in on Thursday or (Thu nigh/Fri morning) then I will be really happy, since that will leave me with two remaining workouts for the weekend, as busy as I am going to be.


Friday, June 29, 2007

Just plodding through the week

UPDATE: Pics to be posted this weekend when I get some time to get my scanner working again. I am also going to order the race pics once they are posted from the race's official picture site.

My legs were sore until Tuesday. I went on my Tuesday night ride, but I had to cut it short (in half to be exact) so that I could get Jackie's camera back before she went on her business trip. It was about 12-13 miles in 54 minutes. Sandy Springs ride. I kept up with everyone past the golf course this time until I got about a mile or two after that, and then I got dropped. See I am getting a little further every time.

Swimming did not end up working out Wednesday morning for logistical reasons. Thursday either. I really need to take care of that situation. Especially on nights where I am able to go to bed at a decent hour.

Thursday night was an endurance ride for me, 2 hours in the saddle. I forgot to bring half my stuff to work with me, and I really, really needed to pick up my dry cleaning, so I went to the Silver Comet Trail. I got started about 6:40p in the evening, and it was getting really cloudy and dark outside. I kept getting hit with sprinkes, but nothing serious....... until I made the turn to come back. After my first hour, I turned around and it hit me. for 5 miles it was drenching rain. I was probably riding 1/2 inch deep in some places, and I had to move the cellphone to the front of my tri shirt to try and keep it dry. That did not help too much, but my phone still works today, so that is promising. I did about 37.3 miles in 2 hours, averaging 18.6 mph. I purposely tried to average 18mph at the beginning of the ride as it was a tempo ride, but once I got about 20 miles into the ride, my legs loosened up and my body wanted to go faster. My mind was thinking control, but that is not how it played out. There was one area of about 1/2 mile where i felt burnt out for a moment (it was a false flat incline), but I kicked it in gear again when it flattened out. Once I got back to the car it was light rain, and I headed home to wash up and then get some dinner (Taco Mac).

I am pretty open this weekend, so I am going to try and get 4 workouts in this weekend (especially swimming) to make up for the week. Most of them are interval/speed training, so there will not be heavy volume of workouts back to back. I am not worried.

In other news, I have kind of mapped out what I think I am going to do over the next 12-14 months. I am toying with the idea of doing IM Louisville. It does not interfere with the wedding, it is fairly close (I can get there in 6 hours), and it is not at the end of the year (like IMFL). The ONLY negative is that it is not as flat as IMFL, but I don't think I want it to be. I also want to get some key events in before hand (such as Half-Mary in Nov, Mary in March, Century ride sometime between April-June). I had no clue until I started writing everything down how much planning and time you need to look ahead to do an event such as this.

And the $$MONEY$$!!! Now I know why the average person only does 1 Ironman Event a year (whether or not they do one close to them or they make a vacation out of it). In theory, I would leave Thu night to louisville, and get there late. Then I would take Friday and Monday off of work, and then come back Monday afternoon. 4 nights hotel, gas, 4 days of food, spending money for entertainment/Ironman SWAG, etc. I think the budget, including entry fees is coming somewhere near $1500!!! Since this is not an event that is popular enough to sell out, I am not too worried about signing up for it the day after yet....however, I am probably not going to take a chance. We shall see, I need to check on a few other things before I make a final decision on this one.

I just found out my schedule for next week at my other job, I am going to have to do the majority of my workouts during the week, because I am working double Wed, Fri, Sat and then I am working sometime on Sunday, but I do not know when yet.


Monday, June 25, 2007

2007 Tri the Parks - Indian Springs State Park, June 23rd, 2007

Before we begin, I wanted to preview my race report with a little clarification on a definition.

BOMBED: (bombd) 1; v. the past tense of bomb, which is to cause a explosive device to detonate on a specified target. 2; adj. intoxicated by alcohol or drugs. 3; See Murtha's post below...

Lets begin the night before, where I worked both jobs on Friday, and the manager for the night was nice enough to let me off a bit early. I think I got home somewhere between 10 and 10:30, and by the time I got done packing everything up, I got in bed around midnight. However, I don't think I fell asleep until about 1am. I woke up at 3:30am, took a quick shower, and downed some Gu and Gatorade. Got in the car and over to Jackie's house at around 4:40am. We packed everything up and then stopped back by McDonald's around 5am, and I got a Southern style chicken biscuit and some water.

Flovilla, GA. Yes, about 45-50 minutes south of Atlanta. I have been close to there before cutting down Christmas trees, and I used to go camping at Indian Springs when I was younger with the family. There are some minor annoyances that I have with the race organizers of this "Tri the Parks" series, and I think most of it stems from the fact that they can get cheap venue setups by using the Georgia park system, and it benefits the park because we have to pay to get in the park (not included in race entry fee). I will state, however, that the park officials were "with it" this time (and the fact that we were not late due to freeway construction) and there were three guys moving cars through and taking money as fast as they could

It figures that my tri life is doomed. I don't know if I wrote about it on Thursday's post, but James told me that the best place to have my bike setup in transition is close to the bike exit, so that you run very little with your bike in T1 and T2. Of course my bike was at the very opposite end. I would not put too much emphasis on this, except that it was a parking area on a hill!!! Not a slight incline, but a hill!!! Again please see my aforementioned comment about the agreement between the organizers and the park system for this reasoning. I was at the end of the row, YES!!! extra room for my setup!

The only other issue I was worried about pre-race was my feet. For some reason they went to heck the last few days before the race, so I had to tape them up. Funny story, a lady, just before the race began, gave me a concerned look. I said hello, and then she asked me if I was racing with a broken foot. I was not paying attention when she told me that. Jackie then relayed the message to me, and I got a good chuckle out of it.

RACE TIME - SWIM (16:31.31, 24th/27 in AG)
I got in the water and swam about 100yds before the race began, and felt good. Gun went off, and I think I started the first 150M too fast because in the middle of the swim I had to breast stroke for about 50M to catch my breath. Otherwise, my breathing was good (bilateral) and I was breathing every 3 strokes. My sighting was also good, just that I purposely stayed wide of the bouys to avoid any hassles. The funny part was that slowed down once to sight, and I found someone drafting off my feet (i.e. running into me). I thought that funny seeing as how I finished almost last in my AG. I did get through it about 30 seconds faster than last race, but I felt like I did it 2 mins faster. Maybe because I was not swimming as hard as I needed to the last half.

MOUNT T1 (1:06.06 6th/27 in AG)
I had to run up sand and rocky forest area before I got to the top of the parking lot for T1. Forgot to have water up there, so I wiped my feet on the towel for a quick second and then planned what I practiced. Then I had to run my bike down the steep slope with my shoes undone, I was kind of paranoid, but made it out. I forgot to turn my Garmin on before the race began, so the satelittes did not pick up until 1 mile into the race.

BIKE - WHAT I THOUGHT WAS FAST REALLY WAS NOT (39:54.54 19th/ 27 in AG, 19.25mph)
Kind of worn out from the swim, and it took me longer than I needed to get velcro on shoes, since the velcro came out of the loops. Then the first thing I had to do was put up with the largest elevation climb of the ride (which would have normally not been that bad, but it was the first thing after the swim. Big geared it for most of the ride, and thought I did much better than my stats posted, since my Garmin was averaging 22-24mph. I guess I never looked down when I was going up those hills, and that first mile where my Garmin was down I was going pretty slow. I felt confident though, since I only had 4 females pass me this time, where I had probably a dozen catch me last time. Coming into T2, I took off my shoes and pedaled on top of them, and had no problems dismounting.

MOUNT T2 (1:30.30, 23rd/ 27 in AG)
Ok, so you ask, "how in the heck can you go from 6th in your AG to 23rd in your AG on T2?" Well, first off you have to have your rack position at the very top of the hill, such that you have to push your bike to the top. Then you have to have issues with your taped left foot and your running shoe, such that you lose 15 seconds playing with it. That would have put me down to 17th in my AG. I finally got out of there quickly after the tape debacule.

RUN - WHERE I "BOMBED" (30:00.00, 23rd/ 27 in AG, 9:40 min/mi pace)
I definately left the majority of the wad I wantd to blow on the bike portion of the course. Within the first half mile, my right hamstring locked up, and I had to stop for about 15 seconds and stretch it. I walked about 15-20 seconds, and then began jogging small strides. There was a female AG'er that was probably in the top 10 that I tried to stay with for about 100yds, but that was not happening. Hills were worse than John Tanner tri I did earlier this year. I got to about mile 1.5, when I had to walk part way up the hill because of my quads. the around mile 2.25 I had to do the same thing. With about .75 mile to go, my right hammie locked up again, and I walked it off for about 30 seconds, the jogged to the finish.

Total Time: 1:29:02.02, 21st/ 27 in AG

Thoughts... Well I missed my goal by just over 9 minutes. Do I care...? NO! I leared alot from this race, and also how my training has led up to the results of this race. I think the big problem is that I needt to figure how much letting off in one area will have an impact in another area. The problem therein lies that I don't think by letting off (for example) 1-2 min on the bike will significantly impact my run performance in a positive manner. I think I just need to up the volume a bit more OR change my training technique. I also did not taper for the event, as it is more of an event just to do leading up to my big race in the fall.

The biggest thing I have noticed is how I emotionally feel about my performance. I really don't care how I finished, just that I did finish (kinda the reason I got started in this whole tri thing three years ago). Even the fact that this was my slowest finish ever in a Sprint distance event does not seem to bother me.

I did not get to see Renee this weekend, mostly due to me having to cut out of the race as soon as I got finished to go up to Clayton (I did not get home until 1am Sunday morning, after being up for almost 24 hours). She got 7th in her AG! I am so proud of her! Totally kicked my butt by almost 4 minutes!!!

I will try and post pictures Tuesday if I have time, and get some of the other John Tanner pictures up as well.


Friday, June 22, 2007

Last workout pre-race

T-minus 15hours and 15 minutes (roughly) before Tri the Parks, Indian Springs State Park!!!!

Excited is the word I would use right now, not nervous. Ready to get this thing the hell on. Do I think I am going to best my fastest sprint time? I am not sure, but I am going to have a good time doing it.

Last night was my last workout this week before my race. Actually I really slacked this week, but it will turn out ok. Bike + Transition Practice (yes I will get more to this later) on Thursday, full tri on Saturday (so it picks up 3 workouts) and then an open water swim on Sunday. So my week will be lopsided, but that is ok.

So last night, James was to help me out with my transition times. My fastest times in a Sprint race have been a total of about 2:20-2:30. So last night we practiced in his cul-de-sac, and although the distance was shorter than my average run through transitions, we compensated for this by adding 10 seconds to T1 and 10 seconds to T2. I think the point I want to hammer home to everyone (and I am sure that I am preaching to the choir, save the people that have never actually practiced their transitions), IS TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A (SOME) SYSTEM IN PLACE, MEMORIZE THAT SYSTEM, AND THEN EXECUTE THAT SYSTEM!!! Other than that, you can skin the proverbial cat anyway you want (**Note** - no cats were injured in the creation of this post ;-)

Here is my break down: Total times for both T1 and T2 in practice (including the added 20 seconds) 1min 20 seconds!!!! An improvement of 1min 10sec-1min 20sec!!! Cutting my time in half! Here is what I did to achieve this

1) NO SOCKS!!! I have been told any race shorter than an Oly you do not need to wear socks, but take the appropriate precautions by a) training without socks and b) athletic tape, band-aids etc... or better yet band-aids and then tape over them so they do not fall off during the race.

2) Rack bike (within race regulations) so that your bike is facing the most efficient way towards the exit of transition. If you have the option of putting your bike wherever you want, put it close to the bike exit (this gets complicated when the bike and run exit are on the opposite sides, but getting there early can help you determine location).

3) Set up your system as efficiently as possible, and anything that is mandatory goes where I have to move something (i.e. sunglasses and helmet on aerobars, race number goes on top of running shoes). I also have my running shoes equipped with the slip on shoe laces (where you fix the elastic laces to how tight you want your shoes to your foot) and my bike shoes are already opened up as much as possible.

4) Do not clip/strap down shoes until you are on the bike (from t1)!!! What you say??? Won't they fly off! I thought so too, and then I went through three practice runs. The trick is to run and take smaller steps so that you are not flexing your foot as much with the possibility of it flying out. I have noticed people during races not locking down there shoes until they are a mile down a road once they have started.

5) Practice unstrapping your shoes before you get off and leave them on there (run barefoot to your spot in T2). My shoes scraped against the ground a few times, and once my rear wheel popped up because my right cleat got caught on the ground, but I just kept running with my bike. If you have a downhill, you can unstrap them earlier (1/4 mile left to go). If it is an uphill or turns you will have to wait later.

6) Do not be afraid to just throw the stuff you don't need anymore anywhere in your space.

7) Make sure you "run" through transition!!! This is an ok time to max out your heartrate. The shorter the race the more T1 and T2 count.

8) When you are coming into T1 or T2, then you need to be visualizing what you are going to be doing in transition.

After my transition practice, we went on an 18.5 mile bike ride through roswell on some fast flats and steep hills. He kicked my butt, but got me averaging 24mph on the flats (maxed out on 28.5 on flats) and then had to granny gear it on the hills, I could not handle it.

I'm ready...

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Countdown.... (Yet again), And pro sightings in Atlanta!!!

I was a total slacker yesterday. It was one of those days where Jackie was allowed to call me out for being lazy. She even drove out of her way to go to my gym because they had a class later in the evening that she wanted to attend. No excuse. Oh well, you can't win them all, can you?

So I am participating in Tri the Parks, Indian Springs State Park this weekend. Renee is competing in the event as well, and I am kind of excited about that. Hopefully we can hook up.
This time there is no road construction that splits the freeway and makes the left lane an express one, so we should be ok on getting to the race site at a decent hour of the morning.

I will also once again be representing Team Javelin, so I will definately be visible (probably from space) with my highlighter yellow and green suit.

Tomorrow it is double duty on my workouts (that is what happens when you slack off), however, both of them are light workouts so as not to make me wake up Saturday morning sore as hell. James is going to help me with transitions tomorrow night, in the hopes that both my transition times will be sub 1 minute (forgoing any 50 mile treks from the water to t1). He told me straight up the other day that socks are not allowed. NO SOCKS!!! Oh well, I suppose Band-aids are cheap, as well as Neosporin. Who needs feet? At least I am not battling with plantar fasciitis again.... (boooo!!!). Maybe I will be worthy of a 2007 foot picture entry on Kahuna's blog.

I think the fastest transition time I have logged was just over 1 minute, and that was mostly due to the fact that I had to back track a bit in T2 during a sprint race because of where I was located. I need all the help I can get if I finally want to break 1hr 20 min... ;-)

Have I told you I am kind of excited? This is only my 2nd tri of the season (and 3rd event). I really need to log a few road races over the summer. They are low maintenance, and they are much cheaper than a triathlon (no $9 USAT one day fee!). I am still signed up for the Tri-PTC in September. I think I am going to make that a yearly event, unless some other tri event or lifestyle change prevents it.

I am also thinking about starting my own tri team... Wha? (like i need to add anything else to my plate!!!) I dunno... I think what I really need to do is join Tri-Atlanta or North Atlanta Multisport first, and then see where that leads me. What can I say, I am just a sociable person, and as well all know, this sport can be just downright lonely at times. For now I think this subject will be on the "back burner".

And guess who was in ATL last weekend??? I'll give you a hint, the winner of the 1st Ryka IronGirl Atlanta event (at Lake Lanier).

Michelle Jones!!!!!!!!

I had to work at Wolfgang Sunday morning, so I missed my opportunity! Oh well, I am sure once my "habit" takes me to some larger events, I will see many more tri-personalities. I was kinda suprised about her winning time, but I think a week or two before she had just competed in a major event and this was more of a recovery thing. Hey, she beat my best time in a sprint tri.... I think Wes went with his wife, and I told a couple other people about it who were interested, but I have not heard of anyone else who went.

If any of you ladies are participating in the Ryka IronGirl event this year, I (meaning Jackie) would love to hear about it.

Signing off for now,


Thursday, June 14, 2007

Awake Time (5:30a-12:30a) + 2 workouts = WORN OUT!!!

My body (and eyeballs) are composing this post under protest!

Tuesday was a good workout. I did not keep time, HRM, anything. I just let my body do the talking and completed a bike sprint workout (8x1 minute sprints), with what I thought was about a 5 minute rest in between each sprint. Legs were pretty torn up after that!

Wednesday morning I was in the pool by 5:45am and I did a straight 1/2 hour with no stopping. Again, just feeling, working on technique, and there were a couple of laps that were breast stroke and butterfly. I lost count of laps (what else is new), but I know for a fact that I completed somewhere close to 1500 M give or take a few hundred.

After work yesterday I went straight to Chastain park for a track(hill) workout. 8-10 minute warmup and then I found a good hill on the run where I did 5x1 minute hill sprints (actually it went 1:24, 1:11. 1:11, 1:10, 1:13). Notice the hill was a bit longer than 1 minute to complete, but I did not complain. I did not get in 8X1 min, but that is due to the fact I got tired out, and there were three more hills for me to jog up back to the car on my cooldown.

I met up with Jackie yesterday evening and we ate at Cheyenne Grill in Buckhead, and then went to the Landmark movie theatre in the Highlands where there was an independent film contest called the 48 hour special. All over the country are people who put together mini movie clips in 48hours or less, and then the audience in each city that they do the competition in votes on the best so they can go to the national competition.

It was supposed to start at 9:30, but did not get started until 10:00pm. I have to apologize to a couple of people who made a few of those movies, I fell asleep during two of them. I was really tired, and I was slumping in a comfy chair and it was dark. Most of them were pretty good, and there was one that was really funny because it had a fight scene and the sound effects were about 10 seconds behind the actual action sequence. Jackie's co-worker had a movie and it was pretty cool, I voted it number one for the night, and then we went home. Got in bed about 12:30am, and did not sleep well last night. I need to go next door and get a starbucks double shot.

I might scrap tonight's workout in favor of getting some rest, I am almost 100% from this sinus thing, but not quite yet. Also, Jackie has a small work shindig with her co-workers, and since I am an unofficial employee (for moral support) of her company, I feel only obliged to show up and partake in the ongoings of drunken debauchery that will ensue tonight :-)

I am going to try and post some more pictures from my tri at John Tanner State Park. I also have the Tri the Parks - Indian Springs state park next weekend!!! Wow, next weekend already?!?!?! Oh well, how time flies. My weekend is packed. I have a swim, endurance run, brick, and I should have one more workout in there somewhere, but I might scrap it. Next week is week 5 in my training plan, and I will make it light for a) reovery from weeks 1-4, and b) it is a race week, even though it is just a sprint. I do not need to be extra sore waking up Saturday morning for a race.


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Yeah!!! Its Here Finally!! And other things...

So Tuesday the joy of my month (other than my fiance, which is every month), came in the mail. I skimmed it real quick while doing the laundry (I got let go a bit early from work due to the sinus bug from lake Altoona, more on that later) and said I would wait until at least tomorrow to plow through the magaznine.

Today we were late at work, so I came home and put in a speed workout on the bike. 8 x1 minute sprints with 5 minutes of recovery/80% of race pace in between. I did not focus on distance or cadence. Just feeling. It felt good. I did it on the SCT of course to ensure fairness (oh I think I mean flatness).

Cutting down my hours for June was a great idea! I am getting to spend more time at home, working out, and of course with Jackie ;-). I am also getting in at minimum 85% of my workouts each week now, where as before it was more like 40-50%. I am on Tomorrow(2x), Thursday(2x), Saturday afternoon and Sunday afternoon. Wes is getting out on the SCT with his wife Dee Dee early Saturday morning, but I cannot get out there because I will be at the bank. They also have me on the opening Sunday shift at Wolfgang Express, so I should be done about 2pm, and then it is soooo on!!!

So far I have made it through about 54 pages of my favorite magazine. I love this month's point-counter point! I kinda side with both people though on the issue.

Well as for last weekend, I put in a 2 hour ride on Saturday for about 32 miles (there was a 2 mile portion where I forgot to turn my watch back on. When Jackie bought me my newest tri gear for my birthday, the shirt is a bit narrower in the back than my others (Zoot is always a bit smaller than Sugoi), so I now have tan, burn, and white on my back. Sunday I swam about 1000-1200M and I got burned then too. It was in lake Altoona again solo, on the same route that Wes and I swam a few weeks ago, but in reverse. I also did not stop when I got to the other end, but immediately looped back and finished. I swallowed a bit of water due to boat wakes (there were a lot out) and I kinda got a light case of sinusitus. I am back at about 85% of normal now, I have been sucking down Sudafed like crazy!!! Odwalla C-Monster helps out as well.

Lastly, for the few of you who read my blog (just kidding, I look at the stats from time to time on who is reading), I want some advice (both generally and technically). I want to keep better track of my stats on a long term basis (i.e. my garming training center, Microsoft Excel, etc). I also want to post my weekly monthly stats on my blog, but I have not figured out how to do the table in the sidebar yet. Any thoughts or suggestions on how do to either or both? How do you keep track with you long term stats? Really with the table, I just need someone to give me some code and explain it to me so that I can manipulate it every week/month and post it to my blog.

I will hopefully be back again on Thursday, if not I will keep up with all of your blogs and get back to you this weekend. Jackie and I are going to watch some Independent film contest tomorrow night that one of her co-workers is involved in.


Thursday, June 07, 2007

Getting Impaitent...

Boy, am I frustrated right now...


Ok, I know that they are already nice enough to send it out to customer's a month before the publication date on the magazine. I also know that you get it about 2 weeks or so sooner by subscribing rather than going to your local bookstore (However if you go to your local tri shop they have it at the beginning of the month).

But it is the expectation of receiving the magazine! I spend the rest of my monthing going through Bicycling Magazine, Runner's World, Running Times, Inside Triathlon, and the other triathlon publication (that I cannot remember). And let's not forget the quarterly publication for the USAT magazine.

How come there is not more quality content? I dunno, maybe what we (I) need to do is create some form of media for triathlons that has current daily content, and I can make money at it (I don't have time to do things for free right now, except charity and training).

I just feel that there is so much information and stories that the average triathlete is missing out on, and tri - geeks like myself seem always starved for more of it. I have links to all the major (and minor) tri websites and I am part of the Tri - Blogger Alliance. And while I do not read everyone's blog, I get to quite a few of them. Although the pro scene isn't even as large as some women's college sports, There is quite a more bit of depth I feel than some of the major sports.

I mean what other sport has three different types of races (now four with the tri One o One race series) and competes worldwide at all levels (pro, amateur, age group, clydesdale/athena, club teams, relays)? We've got the sponsors, and there is no shortage of sponsorship from private to club (ie team gu, javelin) to pro.

There are more races every year than hockey, baseball, football, and basketball combined (based off of number of games each team plays in a season, I think, don't quote me on that yet :-b) and let's not forget the training, and days leading up to and following major races. Expo after Expo, Interbike (need I say more), training camps both near and far(exotic), Team In training stories (and any other organization using triathlon for the bettement of community and society), and anything else that I could not think of goes here.

There are even podcasts with about 3-4 bloggers from the tri-blogger alliance who have weekly podcasts (You can probably guess that I am impatient with Iron Wil and the Kahuna right now, but I still love those guys!), not to mention that USAT now has a podcast and I think that ironman has live event podcasts and videos.

If I could figure out a way to put all of this together, have fun doing it and make money ($$$) at the same time (to support both my private and triathlon lifestyle), I would quit my jobs right now in a heartbeat!

Not that I need to add any more to this post, but I just went to Ironman Live's website, and there are 46 officially sanctioned Ironman events (both full-distance and 70.3). That's almost 4 per month, averaging almost 1 per week! Then you have the ITU series, USAT series, Escape from Alcatraz series, Lifetime fitness series (going to be the biggest prize purse yet), Xterra series, and I think there is one other major series as well. Please note that these are only series that are familiar to us in the North America and does not include any popular ones overseas.

Again my question from earlier arises yet again; how come it does not feel like there is enough content out there for the volume and depth that surrounds our sport? I don't know if there is enough ad revenue (actually there probably is I am just being pessimistic) for a TV channel, but there could be a supersite like espn.com where it would encompass all parts of the sport, and then have contributing reporters, video, podcasts, interviews, etc...

I am a tri-geek! So sue me! I want more! So who is going to help me launch this concept? My email is at the top of the page if you are interested...


Friday, June 01, 2007

Some much awaited pictures (and more to come)...

Hello All,

Here are a few pictures from my Tri the Parks - John Tanner State Park and a couple of pics from the NY bike tour. I have some more from the Tri (on the bike), but I have to scan the pictures in first. Funny how the swim cap matches the uniform. I think the color is growing on me.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

"That's life...."

What a buzzkill...

I have now learned that I am too nice of a person, and I have issues saying no. Why is this? Because I feel I have always been a team player and just a helpful person in general. I figure that somewhere down the line that I will get something back out of what I do for others. Does it usually occur? Nope, but I always hope it will.

How this relates to this blog?

Tuesday I am all ready for my ride. 25 miles with the Sandy Springs group, and my boss from my 2nd job is planning on showing up (the uber good duathlete/triathlete).

About 2 'o clock, the front of house mgr comes over to tell me that two people are not showing up for work and she could really use the help. Insert "Mr. Good Guy/Team Player" here...

I told her I would do it for her. I get there at 5:30 pm in a kind of bad mood, but decided if I was going to be there, I would work. 45 min later, she says, "You know, I'm sorry it is really slow, do you want to go home?" Hmmm let me think... YES! So I literally run out to the car and get my gear, come back in and change, then head up to the ride (which I will be late for, more on that later). As I am on the way I call my boss to let him know plans have changed yet again (it went from riding to not riding back to riding again), and if he is still up for it, to bring it on! He says traffic is bad, but he is on his way. As I am pulling in the parking lot, he calls and is about 10 min away, but that is not the problem. The problem is that he forgot his bike cleats(shoes) at home. He said he had his running shoes, and was going to the Chattahooche to run instead.

So I am off at around 7:00p, and I immediately decide that in 10-15min the A group will be starting the 2nd half of the course, so I might as well start there. Not to mention the fact it would be almost completely dark outside if I tried to do the whole ride. Tried pushing it, but was not working (due to hard workout weekend?). I did ride in some bigger gears spinning just as hard as I would normally in a smaller gear, which was an improvement on some hills. And there was a roller section where I pounded through without gearing down.

I got caught almost halfway around Chastain park (almost done with the ride) and came to the last section of big rollers. When I got to the bottom of the first, I moved to my small ring......and the chain came right off!!! And it was not just that the chain came off, it did in such a way that it got stuck around the bottom bracket and the chainrings. Needless to say this killed my momentum. It took an extra few minutes to fix, and luckily somone was passing me by and I sucked their tail all the way to the finish.

Better some training than none, right?

On a positive note, I changed my entire schedule for June at my 2nd job to be more tri friendly!!! Only 3 days a week, and no Tuesday/Thursday (in case I actually want to do those group rides. Also I have that next tri on June 23rd. I have been really thinking about doing the Callway Gardens with Wes, but the distance is even shorter than a sprint, and I don't feel like getting up at 3am for a race! I also don't want to get a hotel room for a local GA event. So that leaves doing a race that is closer. I used to camp at Indian Springs/High Falls State park(s), so I know how to get there, and I know the area fairly well. Should be some nice hills on the bike course. Maybe we will even go over the bridge on the ride by the waterfalls, that would be cool.

Talk to y'all soon...