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.