Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Back to Reality

I have a blogger friend, whom I shall here after refer to as Mini-Maestro :-) We were discussing the Langley Pond Triathlon in some emails, particularly the bike portion, when he said something interesting to me...

MPH sometimes got me into trouble. If the winds pick up, you don't realize how much more you are taxing your leg muscles on the bike.

It got me to further thinking about my goals for the upcoming HIM. I've made it pretty obvious that I want to go sub-6. Is that reasonable for my first time? I dunno. Here's what leads me to believe it could be done:

If I spend my usual two minutes per 100 meters on the swim, I'll come in at 38:00.

This is what the web site says about the bike route:

Keep your head up as you are expected to have a fast time on this course with only one section of gently rolling hills.


In order to make sub-6, I need to come in as close to or under three hours as I can. That means an average of 18.667 mph on the bike. 3:00:00

That leaves me with two hours and twenty two minutes for my run and transitions. Any, if any, time I bank on the bike will allow me to run a kinder gentler half mary.

Mini-Maestro brings up a good point, however... Setting MPH as a goal (or even time) takes zero external factors into account, such as hills, wind, fatigue, etc... He recommends that I use heart rate and/or wattage as a guide during the race, and I whole heartedly agree. My original plan was to stay in my "steady" zone on both the bike and run, and I'm going back to that. It seemed like the right answer then. It seems like it now. Hopefully, steady will see me to a sub-6 half ironman....

Yesterday, I did a couple of recovery sessions, nothing to strenuous this close to the last race. I swam 1400 meters in thirty minutes in the morning, and then ran a fairly easy 4 mile recovery run in the afternoon. I'm going to allow myself one more easy session today before getting back into serious workout mode. Taper starts next week, again!!

Wes

OSN: 1400 meters, 30 minutes, 7x200
ORN: 4 miles, 30 minutes, 10:45 mmp

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Post Langley Randomness

Saturday night, I allowed myself the luxury of slipping back into the world of adult beverages. Three drinks later and I was sleeping like a baby... Sunday, I completed my conquest of the latest bottle of Vodka and am happily refocusing on training. If any of you were wondering where the strange comments came from over the weekend, well, now you know ;-)

I guess I'm maturing in triathlon in more ways than one. My organization and preparation skills are finally honed. Now, I'm grumbling. In the military, the officers used to know when their men became "veterans" by a sudden onset of grumbling about the smallest of details. Yet, these same men would charge into battle with a gusto that defied life and in some cases, death. My love for triathlon continues to grow, and now I'm fighting the devil in the details. Gotta love it :-) I am beginning to realize that my progress in this sport might be measured in years/decades. I'm still trying to get my arms around that one!

A few fond memories from the race Saturday:

Coming back to the pond on the bike and hearing Grace ring a cowbell and yell "Go, Wes!!!"

Getting chicked by a tri-chica who noted my socks and said she was wearing them too!

Watching the PCA athletes compete - totally awesome!

Sunday, the ole family jewels were chomped by one of my dogs. The rogue female, which we rescued from the pet store, is the odd dog out, and she and our black princess tend to get into spats every once in a while. Well, I broke up a fight by picking the black dog up to my chest, and the rogue jumped up, tried to bite her, and nabbed me in the crotchicular region. Good thing she only got skin, and those eye teeth hurt!!

Keeping the streak alive has been more of a drudgery than a pain in the butt. Sunday, I walked/ran for 1.9 miles, and last night I got on the bike for 8.75 miles in 30 minutes. I'm basically in maintenance mode this week. This part of the plan I just threw together with my best guesses. I hope it is enough to keep me on edge for Florida 70.3...

** UPDATE **

OK. I went to G-maps to determine the mileage for the bike route and put to bed this whole bike suckage thing at Langley Pond. The answer was 19.3 miles and an 18.1 mph average for me, which isn't nearly as far off as I thought I was. Happy now :-) {opera clap}

Wes

OWN: 1.9 miles, 30 minutes
OCN: 8.75 miles, 30 minutes, ~17.5 mph

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Does A Bear Crap in the Woods?

A Langley Pond International Triathlon Race Report

Evidently, and so does Wes, but that's the rest of the story...

After I wrote my last post prior to race day, it began to hit me that the race was coming up fast :-) I know. It was only two days away. I could feel the dread of the swim building in my mind like the tightness of a rubber band. I took some small comfort in the fact that this swim would be wet suit legal, yet I couldn't shake those feelings that resurfaced unbidden from past races.

I had managed to bank three extra hours of work before Friday, and I got up before the butt crack of dawn to get in early. I'm quite surprised at the morning person I am becoming. I still hem and haw about dragging my carcass out of bed in the morning, but once I do, I'm full of energy for the entire day. I left work around 11:30 AM and got home around noon, another benefit of leaving work early. No traffic. I took Bags out for a twenty minute ride and followed this up with a ten minute brick. I was starting to feel pretty good, but my thighs were still tender from all bike mileage I had been putting in the past three weeks.

The sun was shining as we left Atlanta. We hit a little traffic in downtown Atlanta, but for the most part, the ride was very pleasant. We arrived in Aiken, South Carolina between four and four-thirty. We went directly to the hotel and checked into our room. Did we score a doozy of a room too! We basically got a suite for the price of a room with a king sized bed. We had a den, a kitchen, a separate bed room two baths, all for little ole us. We decided to give Aerowyn her own room :-)

After settling in, we were off to Langley Pond to pick up our race packets. I was pleasantly surprised at the number of triathletes already at the park. While picking up my packet, I made sure the race officials knew I had put my chip number in my profile incorrectly. I would be racing with the ChampionChip I had acquired for the Disney Marathon.

We knew we had a couple of hours before Dave and Mendy would arrive in town. Dee Dee and I decided to take a tour of downtown Aiken. We both loved the small town atmosphere. Downtown basically consisted of two to three streets of little shops, cafes and restaurants. We made it back to the hotel around 5:30-ish or so, and settled down to watch the TV.

Around 7 PM, I texted David to ask them if they had left Greenville yet :-) He immediately called me back to let me know they were at packet pick up and would meet us for dinner. I asked David if they wanted to mosy over to downtown Aiken, and he and Mendy were up for it. I was excited when David, Mendy, and Grace pulled into the parking lot!! I went downstairs to meet them and gave Mendy the big ole Georgia bear hug that I am, evidently, becoming famous for :-) Then I got to meet that l'il angel, Grace. She is just as cute in person as she is in all those great pics. Mendy, is of course, a sweetheart! When she says that she is a "Girl raised in the South!" You can believe it!!

David and Mendy decided they would just check into our hotel, and they scored the last available room. Evidently, there was a college baseball team staying in our hotel. We then drove to downtown Aiken and scored a few parking spots on the street. We managed to park pretty close to the local brew pub, and that's where we ended up eating. The idea of sampling the local brew was too much for David to pass up :-) I, personally, decided to abstain from alcohol, but it didn't, as will soon become apparent, help my GI system at all.


While we were waiting for dinner, we managed to snap a few pictures...


David decided he would literally rub his beer in my face! Telling me how awful it was an all :-) He tried the same mental torture with his second beer too, but I was so over it by then! LOL!! All four of us decided on salads for dinner. David had salmon, and the rest of us had steak salads. Grace decided a grill cheese sandwich with fries was the bomb, and I think she got the best meal of the day!


We really weren't in a hurry to leave. We sat around chatting a bit after dinner and enjoying each other's company. We managed to get the technically challenged waiter to snap a couple of pics of us before heading out.


David and Mendy needed to stop off at the store on the way home. We said our good byes outside the restaurant and headed back to the hotel.

I am definitely getting better at this triathlon stuff. When I went to West Point for my second Oly, I had too much stuff, almost, to carry into the transition area. This time, I fit everything into one workout bag. It took me all of fifteen minutes to setup my race belt, recheck to make sure everything was there, then settle down to watch some more TV. Before we finally settled down to bed, there was a few things I needed to get done.

First, I had to tuck Aerowyn in:


Then, Dee Dee and I wanted to send Marcy a small gift :-)


Finally, we settled into bed. Dee Dee decided to watch basketball for a bit, while I dozed off. I slept rather fitfully, off and on all night, but over all, I felt rather rested when the alarm clock went off at 5:30 AM.

After Dee Dee took her customary shower, we went downstairs, ate breakfast and headed for the pond. We ran into David in the parking lot on the way out. Grace was still sleeping. He and Mendy would be coming along shortly. The parking lot at the pond was about half full. I quickly grabbed my stuff and headed over to transition. Evidently, there was no need to hurry. Most people were either at registration or packet pickup. I was the second bike to setup in my rack. I didn't score the end spot, but I was happy with my placement. I spent about 10-15 minutes getting everything setup, including my two bottles of G2.


I grabbed my wet suit and goggles and headed down to the beach to look at the swim course. They decided to change it this year. Rather than doing two laps of the 750 meter course, the decided to convert it into a big "L". The benefit of this is that the Oly participants did not have to merge with the sprint participants until the end.

Promise me you'll move on with your life, but never forget me!!

Ever since I read these words for the first time, I have stepped up my efforts to support the fight against cancer. I still brings tears to my eyes when I think about my wife ever having to say those words to me. The hurt (would be) is profound. I can only imagine what my friends are going through.

Dee Dee and I paused on the way back at the wall to snap the picture in the post below. If you want to buy your own pair, Google "Cancer Sucks socks" and you too can have a fancy pair of these wonderful running socks. I could have opted for the black ones, but who would have noticed?

With about thirty minutes before race time, I suited up and headed down to the beach for a swim. The water felt good, much warmer than my OW swims at home. I swam out the first buoy and practiced floating a bit, both straight up and on my back like an otter.


I felt all the nervous tension leave my body. I was ready. I swam back to beach, climbed from the water, and walked back up to the pavilion with Dee Dee to wait for the race to start.

About ten minutes before race time, the first crack of lightning flashed across the sky. Then the skies opened up and the rain came pouring down. Every time the RD announced when the race would start, a new flash of lightning would ruin our plans. We waited, and waited, and waited.

The RD finally announced the 9 AM was the cutoff time. If we didn't start the swim by then, they would have to change the race to a duathlon. Lucky for us, the rogue cloud hanging over the lake had moved off down the lake and was no longer causing a problem. The sheriff's department notified the RD that part of the bike route was flooded. The bike route would be shortend by four miles for each loop (it ended up being three). I was relieved when they called the elites down to the water and "Lose Yourself" by eminem began to play over the loud speakers. The air horn went off with a blast and the dozen or so elites entered the water and began the race.

David and I donned our goggles and moved into the starting area.


The RD shortened the pause between waves to two minutes. Before you knew it, he blew the horn, and our wave entered the water for the swim.

The swim course was basically an inverted L. We were swimming along the dam to our right, then we would make a left turn to the top of the L. I had decided that I would take it easy out to the first turn, then I would kick it up a notch. It was pretty crowded from the start. I was careful not to pound anyone, nor did I get pounded. I drafted off a few feet for a little bit, but I wasn't really comfortable, and I didn't like accidentally touching the feet of the guy in front of me. By the time we hit the first left turn, I had kicked it up to race pace.

I was actually pleasantly surprised when I reached the first yellow buoy. I thought I would be like half way. Instead, the turn around was right there in front of me. I sighted on a group of swimmers in front of me and swung wide around the turn. The turn wasn't an exact right angle. I ended up taking the turn to wide and headed for a point to the right of the next yellow buoy. Next time, I sight for myself :-) When I realized my mistake, I took a sharper angle towards the second yellow buoy and joined the rest of the swimmers on a straighter line. I had plenty of open water to swim in, and plenty of athletes to keep me company. The second turn around took longer to reach. I made the left turn and headed for the third yellow buoy, about fifty yards away. An abandoned house stood on the shore behind the buoy. It was a definite Kodak moment.

I began to swim harder. I wanted to turn it on for the last section of the swim leg. I passed the final yellow buoy to my right and made the right turn towards shore. I gave it everything I had.


Another athlete and I were swimming body to body, stoke for stoke. Every time I came up for a breath, I was staring right into his goggles. Towards the end of the swim, we broke off and finished on our on. For some strange reason, the swim ended at pier in waist deep water. Talk about retarded. Tired and sore swimmers had to lift themselves out of the water with their arms on the pier, then get up and run to transition. I had no problem getting on the pier, but some athletes did. Dee Dee was waiting for me on the beach.


Dee Dee hollered at me that David came out of the water like thirty seconds before me. I could see him running ahead of me. Well, I was in no mood to run. I stripped off half my wet suit, allowed the blood in my body to redistribute itself, then began running to transition. As I reached my bike, I saw David heading out of transition. That dude is FAST!!!

My wet suite was not cooperating. I got one leg off just fine, but I got my first and only cramp in my left calve getting the left leg out. To be honest, I really wasn't in a hurry. By the time I got out of my wet suit, put on all my bike gear, and exited transition, like five minutes had passed. Oh yea, my swim time was 29 minutes and some change. I'm not really happy with that, but I'll ponder it with you at the end of this report.


My glasses were so foggy as I exited transition, I could barely see. It took almost three miles for them to dry out completely. The race route was a big circle. The sprint was doing one lap, the internationals two. Picture an inverted plate if you will, with the bottom part of the plate lower than the top. That's how the route was. The left side up the plate was mostly up hill with a few down hills, then the opposite side was the reverse. I took the first half of the first lap pretty hard, and hammered the reverse side. I reached thirty-seven miles per hour on one long downhill stretch and was just flying. Near the end of the first lap, I felt my GI "issues" begin to manifest itself. I either went harder than I should have, or my legs were really shot. Either way, I tired significantly on the second lap. I only managed 7-8 mph on the uphills, then I decided to for go pedaling on the downhills and just coast. I was very grateful when I completed the second lap and turned back to the pond.


At the end of the race, I checked my mileage. The distance was 19 miles and I averaged 17.1 mph. That was not what I wanted. Again, I was disappointed.

My transition from bike to run was a lot faster. I geared up and was out the door in two minutes and some change. I was wondering what to do about my GI issues when, lucky for me, the run route went right by the port-a-pots. I made a quick detour to take care of business, then headed out on the run again.


When I reached the first mile marker, I hit the lap button and was surprised to see a 10:45 pace. I was really running fast cause I knew I musta spent at least a couple of minutes in the bathroom. The run route was nice and flat. We were doing an out and back with two water stops. I turned in a 8:49 pace for my second mile, and then a 9:24 for my third mile, which included walking both ways through the water stations. Some nice couple was out on the race course hosing down the runners. I was very thankful for that, despite the shock of the cold water.

During mile 4, the GI issues return and quickly reached unbearable. It was so bad I had to resort to walking some portions of it to keep myself under control. Despite this, I still managed a 9:48 mile. At this, all I wanted to do was run by the port-a-potties again. The road back to the park is lined with forests and uphill. About half way up the hill, we had a code ocher with a breach. Once you have a breach, all humbleness and modesty goes by the way side. For those of you who are sensitive to this kind of stuff, skip the next paragraph.

I quickly dove off the road into the woods and struggled about 8 yards into the forest. I quickly realized that crapping in the woods presents some new challenges. The first and most obvious is not to crap on yo self. I managed that part just fine. Once that was finished, the second challenge was how to get cleaned up. Just for all you new people who have never done this before, here's some sage advice. Do NOT wipe your butt with live or green leaves. If you happen to accidentally pick something poisonous, well, you get the idea. You will pay for an uncomfortably long time! Lucky for me, the leaves were wet, and there was plenty. For a few minutes, I had a oh crap (LOL!) moment trying to figure out which ones I had already used. I know. That's just gross. I haven't wiped my ass with leaves since I went turkey hunting in eigth grade :-)

I quickly pulled up my pants, exited out of the forest, and kicked it in. I turned in a 10:53 fifth mile.


For the final mile, we ran through the transition area, past the finish, then out onto the dam. They evidently shortened the run too, cause the turn around was supposed to be further out. I guess they ended up cutting off the final 0.2 miles of the 10K, cause I measured :-) I was very, very happy to turn in a sub-8 minute mile for my final mile. My pace on the final mile was 7:42. That just totally blew me away. As a matter of fact, I thought the last mile was short until I measured it on g-maps :-)

As I turned into the finisher's chute, I couldn't see Dee Dee, but I knew that she would be there waiting on me to snap my picture.



I raised my arms in victory and crossed the line in 2:41:41 (official).

David, Mendy, Grace, and Dee Dee were waiting for me at the finish line. David kicked some serious ass on the bike and run, finishing about thirty minutes before I did. High fives all around. I was a bit wobbly after my run, which made David chuckle, but hey, I ran hard :-)

We opted not to hang around for the entire awards ceremony. We had chilluns at home that needed t aking care of. Jimmy did a fantastic job of caring for Matthew while were gone. He is such a fine young man. Both Dee Dee and I were very tired on the trip home, but we made it home safely, getting into Atlanta around 4:30 or 5 PM.

Now, I'm trying real hard to keep this race in perspective as a "B" race. First, I swam hard. I know I was hitting close to my T-pace for part of that swim AND I was in a wet suit. There's no way I should have come in that close to 2 minutes per 100 meters. I did swing out to wide on the first turn, so maybe that's the reason. I don't know, but I'm not going to dwell on it. Just accept it and move on. I am also disappointed in my bike performance. The route wasn't that hilly. I just totally sucked wind on the second lap and couldn't give it everything I had. This has me rethinking my strategy at Florida 70.3. The run was my silver lining. Despite the GI issues, I believe, had I not stopped twice, I could of PRed my 10K distance at this race, despite having to stop 2 times. I am very excited about that. In addition, I had zero cramping during the race, with the exception of the cramp I got taking off my wet suit. I'll definitely have to work on my race week nutrition before Florida 70.3. Overall, I'm very happy with the fitness of my body.

Dave, Mendy, and Grace, we had a great time seeing you guys in Aiken! I hope our paths cross again sometime soon. Maybe you guys can come for a destination race in Atlanta some time :-)

It's time to get serious, now. Just a hop skip and a jump until my first half ironman!

Wes

Saturday, April 26, 2008

For Chells and Vic


I tried to upload this from my camera phone this morning, but obviously I failed miserably. This is the pic of me sporting my new Cancer Sucks! socks right before the rains came in and threatened to turn our triathlon into a duathlon.

Fortunately, we were able to get off about an hour late, but due to flooding, they had to shorten the bike course by six miles.

I finished in around 2:40. More on that later! ;-)

Wes

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Ta Ta (for now)

Why, yes! Lisa! I do believe I have been losing some weight. It would seem that my current belt is purely ornamental in nature. Me thinks it's time to go back to Walmart for a wardrobe make over :-) LOL!! No coffee and very little alcohol for three weeks, plus the spring temperature change, has returned me to my fighting weight.

First, I must give credit where credit is due. My darling wife, Dee Dee, coined the term, "Jackhole". Her family is Irish, and as you all know, Irish folks just have a way with words!

Well, its a couple a days before Langley Pond, and I'm just about ready to go. Ideally, I would of liked to have a two week taper, but one week is just going to have to do. This is not an A race for me. That sounds funny, ya know? In the past, I've only raced and trained all out, and now, I need to rein myself in for something other than an A race... We'll see how it goes.

Taper is going fine. Tuesday, I ran for thirty minutes with three one minute intervals thrown in. It felt good to cruise along at a 10 minute pace and not even be out of breath. I hit the intervals at a sub-8 minute pace, and that too was good. Last night, I had a thirty minute bike ride. I chose to ride Bags (my hybrid) and quite frankly, didn't give a damn about "just above race pace".

Today... I get to walk... Can you tell? I am soooooo excited ;-)

My goals for this race are pretty simple. I want to do better than a 2 minute per 100 meters on the swim. I want to feel like I'm actually racing in the water. I want to hit my half ironman race pace (or a little faster) on both the bike (19 mph) and the run (10 mmp). If I can do those things, I will be happy, no matter what the time.

Good luck to all my peeps racing this weekend, especially those doing St. Anthony's! I will keep you guys in my thoughts...

I've been giving it a lot of thought, and I've got a special picture in mind that I want to send from my camera phone Saturday morning, before the race. I'll follow that up with a quick race report in the afternoon, then the full race report either Sunday or Monday.

Till then... Have a great weekend, y'all!

Wes

ORN: 2.9 miles, 30 minutes, 10:15 mmp
OCN: 7.3 miles, 30 minutes, 14.6 mph

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Isn't technology wonderful?

I am the Sum of my Cube! LOL!! Just a quick test to check out the email features of my phone/camera!!! Aren't y'all lucky???

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Swim Analysis: Check!!

Dee Dee and I made it out to the Mountain View Aquatic Center for our swim stroke analysis after work yesterday. All I can say is "damn!" Why doesn't our county have a single aquatic center like that? It was very nice. You know what was even more impressive? There were just lots and lots of little rug rats, small and tall, old and young, swimming in the 20+ lanes at a pace that would of kicked my arse :-) I loved it!

We got there a bit early. Our coach was in the small pool teaching a young fishette how to use her fins properly. After about fifteen minutes, she comes by, introduces herself, and moves us to an empty lane in the middle pool. She tells Dee Dee and I to do some warm up laps while she watches us. I take off and do 4-6 laps in the pool, come back to the coach, and she says. "Your swim stroke looks pretty good. I don't think I would change anything at this point." I thought: Wow! This is going to be a really short session. ROFL!!

In her defense, she did ask me if there was anything I wanted to work on, bilateral breathing, flip turns, yadda, yadda, but I am pretty happy with all that stuff. She then spent the next 45 minutes or so working with Dee Dee on her stroke. They practiced balance, body positioning, breathing, and stroke drills. Overall, I was very happy with the results of our session. I got the thumbs up on my stroke, and Dee Dee made some real good progress on improving her stroke, all in one session.

I'm going to count that as my first swim workout of the week. My body was just exhausted last night, from the weekend, and I'm afraid I wasn't a very good husband!! I'm feeling well rested and less sore today. I have a short run with three one minute intervals, and I plan to make the most of it!

Wes

OSN: 1 hour, form and drills

Monday, April 21, 2008

Jackhole

No, it's not a term of endearment.

I went a little overboard this weekend.

Saturday, we were up bright and early for an open water swim with some tri peeps from Beginner Triathlete. A couple of bloggers were there as well, namely my home girl Sarah and Kevin, who is training hot and heavy for an Olympic distance in June.

The swim went very well. I made a special effort to pull the wet suit up very high on my wrists and ankles, and this seemed to release some of the tension I felt while swimming. I didn't feel nearly as tired in the shoulders and arms as last time, although it did hit me later in the afternoon.

After the swim, I promised some of the new tri peeps I would take them on a 10 mile or so bike ride along the route of the Acworth Women's Tri. The route is nice and fairly flat along the lake, rather pretty too. Once we diverged from the race route (we were on a straight out and back), we went down this really long hill where I immediately decided to turn around. We lost Dee Dee on the way back up :-) I told the other tri peeps to head back to the park and turned around to accompany Dee Dee back up the hill. I know where my bed is made ;-) After making it back up hill, Dee Dee and I returned post haste to the park. We arrived home just in time to get ready for Matthew's soccer game.

The early afternoon was spent napping and watching soccer on TV. I headed out around 3-ish for my two hour run. My legs felt like crap, and I didn't really want to run. About 2.5 miles into my run, some jackhole threw half a bottle of Mountain Dew at my back as I was running down the road. Fortunately for him, he missed, and besides giving him the double hand single fingered salute, no harm was done. Lesson learned. I will no longer run with my back to traffic, unless otherwise absolutely necessary. Some people just suck. I finished my run with a little more angry pep in my step and finished 10.25 miles in 2 hours.

Sunday morning, I got up early, again, to accompany Dee Dee to a cancer related 5K that she was running downtown. Ms. Sarah met us downtown at Atlantic Station before the race, and we had a good time chatting. It was an absolutely gorgeous day for a race. It was cool. The sun was shining, a definite ten. The route for this race was a bit different than the route we ran for the Shamrock n Roll. Dee Dee did the 5K in about 35 minutes, and I have some race pics I can post later on, after I download them from my camera.

After the race, we hurried home and loaded the car for the Silver Comet. I managed to get off right around 11 AM and thoroughly enjoyed my ride. Much like my run from the previous day, my legs were sluggish, in pain, and I just couldn't get my speed and heart rate up to where it needed to be. I only made it out to the 26 mile marker in and hour and a half and did the return trip in an hour and twenty seven minutes.

Cap all this off with two adult soccer games, where I probably ran 8-10 miles, and in a word, I am pooped!

Dee Dee and I are meeting a swim coach for stroke analysis today. I'll let y'all know how that goes tomorrow. Here's to a sweet week for y'all and an especially sweet taper week for me. Langley Pond looms dead ahead.

Wes

OSN: 700 meters, ~20 minutes
OCN: 10.3 miles, ~45 minutes
ORN: 10.25 miles, 2 hours, ~11:39 mmp
OCN: 52 miles, 3 hours, ~17.5 mph
Soccer: 8-10 miles, 180 minutes

Friday, April 18, 2008

You were! No, You were!

A tri version of: I know I am but what are you?

Thursday is a regularly scheduled brick for me, and to be honest, I rather enjoy them. Over the course of this twelve week plan, the amount of time I spend training on Thursday has not changed a bit, just the work done during the training period. Thursday's workout was supposed to be just above race pace for an hour, followed by a fifteen minute run off (just above race pace).

Ms. Karen had mentioned that she would be doing her 80 minute run at the park, and we made arrangements to meet up for our run off. I got to the park a little early, took my time, and hit the pavement at exactly 11:30 AM. Ten minutes later I get a text from Karen saying she was starting her run. I wasn't really worried about her late start, as text messaging from her phone to mine was a bit slow. I knew we would meet up on time.

The ride went well. I, of course, did most of it at race pace (rolls eyes) and proceeded to do the rest fairly easy to make up for it. As I was riding back through the park, I caught up with Karen close to the parking lot. I said "Hi!", and I could tell she wasn't sure if it was me :-) We got it worked out, went to my car and quickly got changed, and then headed out on our run. We stopped near the restrooms to look at a baby snake that was making its way back to the river. I'm not an expert on snakes, and I couldn't tell if it was poisonous or not. We decided not to mess with it (I know, we are smart like that). After about 8 minutes or so, Karen asked me if I wanted to turn back, but I felt well enough to finish her run with her. We did like 2.8 miles or so in the thirty minutes.

On the way back, our pace picked up quite a bit. We were just running along, talking, and slowly but surely increasing the pace. When we made it back to the parking lot, Karen said something to the effect of, "You really picked up the pace there!", and I said "No, you picked up the pace, I was just following along." We proceeded to laugh and argue (a little bit) about exactly whom was setting the pace! LOL!! We both decided that it was a good run. We felt fine. In the end, it didn't really matter.

Before we left the parking lot, we took a picture of the two of us with the camera phone. My being an expert technologist and all, I forgot to save the damn picture before I closed the lid on the phone and promptly lost it. Sooooooooo.... Sorry Lisa! No picture :-( I was hoping to get one of all of us together at the restaurant last night, but Karen's friend wasn't feeling well. They couldn't make it.

Karen, thanks for taking the time to do some runs with me :-) I'll return the favor when Dee Dee and I come to England for a fo really reals football match!!

Wednesday, I did a double take when I saw my swimmage for the month. I was already at 10 miles, and it was only half way through the month. Holy crap that's a lot of time in the water, and I just added another 2.3 miles today! I think I'm growing gills!

Have a great weekend y'all!!

Wes

OCN: 16.7 miles, 1:04:12, ~16 mph
ORN: 2.8 miles, 30 minutes, ~10:30 mmp
OSN: 3600 meters, 1:15:00, 1x400 w/u, 5x300, 400 meter ladder, 1x100 c/d

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Bike Intervals

They're not just for breakfast anymore!!

One of the few things that I tend to get flustered about is logistics, or lack there of. Most of my training is done on a very tight schedule. I take advantage of my opportunities, hit my training times, then move on. Little things, like forgetting to put on my heart rate monitor or Road ID fluster me, and you know once you are flustered, it can snowball into a crap training session and a bad "rest of the day".

Thus the importance of being organized. I am not an organized person. Sure, I write fairly well organized software, but my brain works like that. In school, the nuns used to call me the absent minded professor. I'm much better at spontaneity and winging it. I have found that the night before is the perfect time to pack lunches, gather up clothes and bags, and pack the bike in the car for a lunch time work out. As far as forgetting stuff goes, yea, we are still going to have to work on that one :-)

My transition into work this morning went very smooth. All I had to pack was my running shoes. My cycling stuff was still in the car from yesterday's workout. That's called being organized by accident (or through no fault of my own!). My schedule yesterday called for one hour of riding with three five minute intervals at a hard effort with two minutes of recovery. The last two weeks, I haven't done any intervals cause it seemed like I was always doing my ride at home, with hills, and since riding the hills pretty much guarantees me a hard effort for pretty much the whole ride, why bother trying to figure out where and when to do five minute intervals?

Yesterday was different though. Columns Drive is the perfect spot for time trials and now intervals too it seems. I usually hit 21-22 mph on the slight downhills and 18-19 on the slight up hills with 20 being the median effort on flats. For my hard effort, I tried to push up into the 23-24 mph range and I succeeded for the most part. For the rest of the ride, I followed the instructions to the "T" and rode easy easy! So unlike me :-)

Today's workout calls for one hour ride "just above race pace" followed by a fifteen minute run off. I'm hoping to catch Karen during her 80 minute run in the park, thinking just maybe we can finish up our workout together. We'll see how it goes...

Wes

OCN: 16.7 miles, 1 hour, 16.7 mph, 3x5 HE w/2 min recovery

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The Ties that Bind: Part Deux

Over a year and a half ago, I wrote this post about the ties that bind us together. Much better, is it not, than the differences that separate us? I was pondering, contemplating if you will, the synergy in running (mostly, at that time), triathlon, and blogging that made good friends out of people who would otherwise be perfect strangers.

The Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson Airport flip flops back and forth as the busiest airport in the United States. As such, I get all kinds of visits from bloggers who are either passing through, coming in for a visit, or making a business trip. I was excited to learn Karen was in town for an entire week, all the way from England. She is helping a friend get settled into a new job here in the states. How exciting is that?

Of course, I just couldn't let this opportunity get away. How often do you get the chance to meet up with an international blogger and triathlete? Not many, I dare say!! After much exchanging of emails, we decided that a lunch time run would be a good time to meet up. Karen's friend just happens to live and work close by my office, which of course is close by the Chattahoochee Park.

As our lunch time run approached, Karen and I exchanged a few text messages about what we wanted to do. She needed to fartlek. I was supposed to do intervals. I really didn't want to run hard after running 18.5 miles on Sunday. I told Karen that we could just do what ever she wanted. When Karen picked me up in front of my office, she got the customary vicious Wes blogger hug. I warned you guys!! We immediately fell to chatting like old friends. I teased Karen about her driving and asked if I needed to cover my eyes on the way to the park :-) She actually drove very well, having acclimated to driving on the wrong side of the road rather quickly.

It was a beautiful day. The path along the river is pancake flat and we fell into a sub-10 minute pace. That was a little fast for me, but Karen seemed to think it was OK so I went with it, and we talked back and forth as we ran. When we hit the backside of the path, off the river, we went over the two little hills, and I told Karen to enjoy them because that was all she was going to get! LOL!!! We wound up our run with a quarter mile sprint at about an 8:30 pace. I would not have trained that hard without someone else to run with. It was rather enjoyable.

At the office, as Karen was dropping me off, we made plans for her and Sarah to come out to the restaurant for dinner to meet Dee Dee and the kids. I'll let you guys know how it goes. It was really nice to get to meet Karen in person. Her personality really comes through on her blog and she is just as nice in person. That's another really cool thing about blogland that I enjoy so much. People who are true to their spirit in person and in their blogs just rock!!

Monday, I did a thirty minute trainer ride to keep the streak alive. I took it semi-easy and did 8.7 miles in thirty minutes. Tuesday morning I did my usual form session in the pool, turning in 2600 meters in an hour.

Happy Hump Day, y'all!!

Wes

OCN: 8.7 miles, 30 minutes, ~17.4 mph
OSN: 2600 meters, 1 hour
ORN: 4 miles, 40 minutes, 10 mmp

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Quest for Iron (Continues)

It'd been quite a while since I had the pleasure of fo really reals sleeping in on a weekend morning. I needed it. The kids were wrapping up their last weekend of spring break. I got up at 9 AM, made breakfast for the fam, then spent a lazy morning/lunchtime watching the English Premier League on Fox Soccer. My oldest son was out of the country, and my youngest decided to spend the night over at a friends house. With Dee Dee working, that opened up some interesting possibilities for my training.

I keep my browser at work pretty much tuned to the weather. I knew that Sunday was going to be windier and colder than Saturday. I made the decision to hit the Silver Comet Trial Saturday afternoon for my 3.5 hour brick. My reward was temps in the high sixties, a very slight wind, and a fairly empty parking lot at the Mavel Road trail head.

The ride ended up being stellar. What I enjoyed so much about it, more than anything else, was the feeling that I didn't have to hurry. I had no where to be anytime soon. Somehow, I picked up a drafter again. I'm like, WTH? Do I have "Draft off Me!!" tattooed on my forehead? Naturally, it was game on about 10 minutes into my ride, and I rocked the trail out to the turnaround at the 28 mile marker. I was quite pleased to hit my one hour and thirty minutes at race pace exactly on the way out. I tried really fo really reals (2 if you are counting :-) hard to take it easy on the way back and did the second half in an hour and thirty three minutes. I honestly think there is a tailwind on the way back, more so than a lot of down hill and such.

The thirty minute run off went well. I was actually wondering exactly how the hell I was going to run, and I drew upon a little inspiration to get me going. Sure enough, I felt really strong and had a great run. I paid extra attention to my pace and hit 10 minute miles exactly, this time :-)

Sunday morning I awoke to some slight swelling in the joint on my right foot. Dee Dee, Jimmy, and I enjoyed a nice breakfast (that Dee Dee made) while we watched Manchester United seal a sweet victory over The Gunners at Arsenal. After the game, I snuck out for my 105 minutes of running. My foot was really bothering me. I was satisfied with an 11 to 11:30 pace for most of the run, and I think I walked every hill. I decided to cut the run a wee bit short as I was refereeing Sunday night. I did 8.3 miles in around 1:34:00.

Before I left for my matches, I recharged the Garmin and took some ibuprofen. When it came to game time, my foot was feeling a lot better. I think the ibuprofen really helps. I wore the Garmin for my matches cause I wanted to see how far I ran during a game. The first game was an over-40 game. These older players are pretty good too. I thought I would get to walk around a lot and take it easy. No such luck. I ran 5 miles in the first game. The second game was a Division I men's game, and I ended up running 5.5 miles during that game. Now, I got my digits and some idea of how to integrate this soccer stuff into my training plans...

Alright, homies! Sorry to be so windy :-) I DID drink a few beers this week ;-) This is the final week of my "peaking"! I am planning on doing an open water swim this weekend, somewhere, and I have another three hour bike ride on tap, two of which are at race pace, followed by a 45 minute run off at race pace. If anyone wants to come and keep this old guy company on this minor epic brick, feel free to drop me a line.

Wes

OCN: 56 miles, 3:03:12, 18.36 mph
ORN: 3 miles, 30 minutes, 10 mmp
ORN: 8.3 miles, 1:34:33, ~11:20 mmp

Soccer: 2 games, 180 minutes, 10.5 miles

Friday, April 11, 2008

Dropped a Brick

Use your imagination. I like to keep A Code Geek's Tail PG rated :-)

Yesterday afternoon, my cohorts informed me that we needed to have a meeting at 1 PM. No problem. When I ride my bike at work, I'm usually back by 1 PM, but I need to eat. I decided I'd just ride my bike after work. At 4 PM, the meeting was still dragging on. I grew up in Atlanta, in a business sense, where meetings were considered taboo. There's nothing worse than sitting around a table in a group of people, listening to them speak for the pure pleasure of hearing themselves talk while convincing everyone how smart they are. Damn that's a long sentence. By that time, the topic of conversation didn't apply to me anyways. I begged off and hit the road.

Seeing as I'm all sensitive and stuff, I opted not to ride out of the parking garage. Nope. Not me. I would of been embarrassed if one of my co-workers saw me and realized I left the meeting to work out (even though I didn't need to be there). I drove the SUV the short distance to Columns Drive and paid my three dollars to park :-D When I freed Aerowyn from the confines of the trunk, I realized my front tire was flat. Like, totally awesome. I figured I would pump it up, go out on my ride, and if she went flat, I would get some practice changing the tire.

Sure enough, after one loop of Columns Drive, the front tire was about half flat. I pull over to the side of the road, take off the front tire, reach under my seat for my kit, and there's no kit. I had taken it off to wash the bike. Just damn. I thought for a minute and realized I put the kit in my shoe bag that I carry all my stuff in. I put the tire back on, cycled to the car, changed my tire, then rode back through the park again to do one more loop on Columns Drive. It wasn't the greatest ride in the world, but I ended up doing 2 fifteen minute intervals at race pace, instead of one at just above race pace.

After my ride, I did a fifteen minute run off at race pace. Can you tell I was a bit flustered? I really need to slow down. I realize that I have a problem. I just go go go, and that is probably not a good thing. When the plan calls for Just Above Race Pace, that is what I need to do.

The plan doesn't tell me how to swim, just how long, and since I am also training for the 5K swim, I bumped every day up by fifteen minutes. This morning, I did race specific stuff, namely 5x300 where the first 100 is all out, and the next 200 is at race pace. Last year, this drill kicked my butt. This year? eh? I followed this up with 1x1000 and 1x500. With warm up and cool down, it was a 3500 meter day in the pool for yours truly.

The sun is shining, and I want to get in the lake. How sad is that? LOL!! Unfortunately, by the time I get off, thunderstorms will be coming through town.

Everyone have a great weekend!!!

Wes

OCN: 18 miles, 1:09:33, ~15 mph (including 4 trips through the park, blech!)
ORN: 1.5 miles, 15 minutes, 10 mmp
OSN: 1:08:22, 3500 meters, 1x400 w/u, 5x300, 1x1000, 1x500, 1x100 c/d

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Stuff Me in Seran Wrap

and call me a triathlete!

Much to my joy (horror), the sun was blissfully shining yesterday when I got off work. Traffic was lighter than normal due to spring break, and I got home at a decent time. I quickly enjoyed my mid afternoon snack, grabbed my wet suit and swim gear, jumped into the SUV with Dee Dee bug and headed for the lake. Dee Dee and I worked out our plans during the day. She was all ready to go as well, and excited to try out her new suit, I think.

Rather than head to Galt's Ferry, our normal swimming spot, we decided to try Victoria Beach, which is practically right outside our back door. Within five minutes, we were at the beach and ready to go. It took us about fifteen minutes to get our wet suits on. I body glided my arms and legs but still couldn't quite get the fit right. Right as we were heading to the lake, a red truck with three rednecks, and I use that term affectionately, pulled up into the parking lot with us and backed their truck up so it was pointing at the beach. I didn't give them much further thought, figuring they were there to enjoy the sun.


Victoria Beach ended up being the perfect place to practice in our wet suit. The swim guards run out to the island to keep the boats out. If you make the little circuit of the swim area, without going into the weeds around the island, it is around three hundred meters. I used my handy dandy digital thermometer to test the temperature. Within six inches of the surface it was 64.5 degrees. Of course, further down, it was well into the fifties. My feet started to freeze a bit while I waited in the water for Dee Dee.

As I got ready to swim, one of the fine young gentlemenz came tromping down the beach pulling a ski line. Evidently, Cherokee's finest had hooked the ski line up to a motor and this dude was going to wake board down the beach. Did I mention this guy looked like Captain Cave Man? :-)


His first attempt resulted in him having the rope yanked out of his hand and hitting the cold water with a resounding thud. I tried not to laugh out loud (failed miserably). On his next attempt, the motor operator got the hang of it and the Captain skied down the beach, spraying our towels and gear with a flood of water. Grrrrr! I decided not to mess with him as I wasn't in the mood for an arse whipping. I had to restrain Dee Dee :-)

Without much further ado, I got to swimming. The wet suit worked great. It was a little cold as water seeped in through the zipper, and I did have a little trouble catching my breath when I put my face into the water. After one circuit of the swim area, I was rather toasty, and my face felt fine. I did four laps back and forth straight across, which I measured at 100 meters, and called it a day. Dee Dee swam for 10 minutes or so, before deciding the water was just a bit too cold on her face.

Is it just me, or do other peeps swimming in a wet suit feel like they have resistance in their arms and shoulders when stroking? I know I need to work my sleeves on my legs and arms further up my body, this should take care of that problem, but I'm just wondering??

When I got home, I headed out on my one hour ride on the hilly neighborhood route. When I got back to my subdivision, which usually takes me an hour, I still had five minutes left. Maybe I felt strong and rode faster, or the tune up made me faster. I think I'll take the former :-) Either way, it's another little sign of progress!!

Katie asked if I was counting down yet to IM Florida 70.3, and the truth is, in two and half weeks, I'll be toe-ing the line at Langley Pond in South Carolina. The nervous excitement is building and that's all I can really think about now. Florida 70.3 probably won't hit me until shortly there after.

Wes

OSN: 700 meters, ~15 minutes, Open Water
OCN: 15.75 miles, 1 hour, ~15.75 mph

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Oh No You Di'nt!!

Imagine my surprise when I woke up Monday morning feeling like total crap. Maybe I should qualify that. I was feeling like total crap from my waist down. The joint where my right leg meets my foot was tender, and I couldn't straighten my left leg without pain. WTH? I almost immediately regretted running forty seconds faster than race pace on my brick Sunday.

After work on Monday, I met Dee Dee at the pool for my recovery/streaking workout. I figured a dip in the pool would be somewhat refreshing, and it was. It really helped my foot, but keeping my left leg straight while swimming seemed to aggravate my left knee. Evidently, the muscle in the back of my thigh was tighter than a tick on a bloodhound, and that was causing pain when I straightened my knee. I swam a leisurely 1250 meters in thirty minutes, then hit the hot tub for some soaking. That was my first time using the hot tub at the gym in over a year. It was good :-)

Tuesday, when I woke up, everything seemed a little better. I hit the pool for my "form" workout and did 2550 meters in 59 minutes. Sitting at my desk all day seemed to aggravate my left leg, and it got worse. It was very difficult to straighten my leg out, so I quit trying. My training plan called for six quarter mile intervals, but I was wondering whether or not I was going to be able to run at all.

Well, I was committed to at least try, but decided against doing the intervals. They just aren't that important to me. I left American Idol in the middle of the show to run at Hobgood Park. I wanted flat and easy. I promised myself I would quit if I felt a sharp pain. I also promised myself not to worry about pace. When I started running, I found that my left leg was pain free, as long as I didn't straighten it out. My right foot joint immediately started bitching, but after a few minutes, it too settled down in to a dull ache. I felt well enough to pick up my pace a bit and ended up doing four miles in 44 minutes, for an 11 mmp. I got home just in time to watch the last half of Hell's Kitchen, a favorite(!) . I took two ibuprofen. Between that and the run, I'm feeling a lot better today.

I learned a valuable lesson from this experience, again. Riding 2.5 hours on the bike is no excuse for sloppy form on the run off. If you run like crap, you are going to pay the price.

The sun is shining today! Woot!!! If it is still out when I get off work, I'm getting in the cold arse freezing lake! Negative thoughts be damned!!!

Happy hump day, y'all!!

Wes

OSN: 1250 meters, 30 minutes
OSN: 2550 meters, 59 minutes
ORN: 4 miles, 44 minutes, 11 mmp

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Peaking is Killa

Saturday morning, Dee Dee and I got up relatively early to take her to get fitted for her bike. Yea, it's been nine months since Dee Dee got her bike and we were just now getting around to getting her fitted. It was a dreary day. It was raining, not a big down pour, but the kind of drizzle that reminds that it is indeed a craptacular day.

Dee Dee and I mosied on over to All3Sports. This fine establishment is the tri store of choice in North Atlanta. Heck, it's the only tri store I know of in Atlanta. We managed to get there shortly after the store opened. Dee Dee got right to getting "fitted". Here is a list of things that were wrong with Dee Dee's bike.

1. Her seat was too low.
2. Her handle bars were crooked.
3. Her cleats were loose, which explained why she couldn't unclip.

LOL! Totally not my fault. I told that woman to go get fitted shortly after she got her bike! Oh well, better late than never! While she was getting fitted, I was browsing every single item in the store, but managed to restrain myself to a new aero bottle for the tri bike.

On the way home, we stopped off at the LBS to see if Aerowyn was finished. The manager said that the guy working on her had stopped for some reason and he would check on her. Well, she needed about 10 more minutes of work. They actually looked pained! I said not to worry. I would come back for her later, as I lived right down the street. Within the hour, they called to tell me she was ready. Oh yea!! I went by and picked her up and brought her home.


Shortly thereafter, I suited up and hit the streets for my 90 minute run. The rain was still coming down in a slow drizzle. I wore short sleeves, shorts, and my new tri visor. The temps were about sixty degrees and it was actually fantastic. It took about five minutes before water started dripping from my hat, and I didn't even realize I was soaking wet until about mile three. I felt good enough to hit the familiar hilly loop hard and did 8.3 miles in about 88 minutes, for a 10:30 average pace.

Sunday morning, Dee Dee and I met Brian at the Silver Comet Trail for our long ride of the weekend. I had 2.5 hours on the schedule, 1 hour at race pace. Dee Dee was looking at doing about an hour. Brian was looking like the stud triathlete on a really cool black Felt tri-bike. Let me tell ya, that dude can ride!!! I just can't say how awesome it was to have TT bars on Aerowyn and thumb shifters. My riding was smooth. Shifting was smooth and effortless. I was really surprised at the way it changed the ride. I am very happy with the investment! About fifteen minutes into the ride, Dee Dee said that she wasn't worried about riding with us. Brian and I continued on at our own pace. We mainly rode side by side, but every now and then Brian would surge ahead. I was thinking, "That bastard!" LOL!! Just kiddin... It was really great to get together with Brian again and have a riding partner on the trail. We are making plans for some more training sessions before Florida 70.3. Brian was taking his family to Six Flags. After dropping him off, I headed back out on the trail for another 10 miles or so. Over all, I did 42.8 miles in about 2.5 hours, for a 17 mph average.

When I got back to the trail head, I took my time changing into my running clothes. I had been drinking quite a bit out of my aero bottle, and I had eaten a gel every 30 minutes. I've gotten into the habit of eating a cliff bar before my run. I was quite energized for my thirty minute run off. Dee Dee had put her bike in the back of the SUV. I had to lock my bike up on the rack. I ran an out and back along the trail head, mainly to keep an eye on Aerowyn while I was running. The 42 mile ride seemed to add some ooomph to my run, and managed 9:22 minute miles for my thirty minute run, turning in 3.2 miles. That was a new record for me.

Overall, it was an awesome training weekend. I'm looking forward to even longer sessions over the next two weeks. This will truly test my mettle, prior to the taper for Langley Pond on the 26th.

Rock'n and Roll'in. Everybody have a great week!

Wes

ORN: 8.33 miles, 1:28:14, 10:30 mmp
OCN: 42.8 miles, 2:30:53, 17 mph
ORN: 3.2 miles, 30 minutes, 9:22 mmp

Friday, April 04, 2008

Living the Dream

In Honor of Martin Luther King

For the love of Dr. Martin Luther King, sing:

Early morning, April 4,
Shot rings out, in the Memphis sky...
Free at last, they took your life
They could not take your pride

In the name of love, once more in the name of love..

-- Pride in the Name of Love, U2

I've always prided myself on having an open mind, a willingness to listen to other people's point of view. Try to understand where they are coming from before casting my own opinion or forming my own judgments. Perhaps that's why in the real world, I make a better listener than I do a talker.

As I grow older, my beliefs and principles have taken root deeply. Some inflexibility has set in, much like the aging and loss of athleticism in these middle aged bones, muscles, and sinews. The opinions still bend, mind you. They adapt. More so than when I was younger, hard headed, and out to conquer the world, but less so when they had reached their maturity as principles upon which I have built this house.

Thusly, I have arrived at the point of despair. I do not believe that we, as a country, as a people, will ever be able to stamp out racism and religious intolerance in the world. You see, these sins, if you will, are ingrained in who we are as human beings. There is the need to feel stronger, superior, to survive. It gives us pleasure. It is, indeed, a basic instinct. Now I'm not saying that this can't be overcome. It can, and it is, but there will always be people out there who will succumb to the pleasure of feeling superior over another human being. That power is as intoxicating, addictive as any drug or spirit. Beware the coming of Satan, for he shall wrap himself in a cloth of the purest white...

The war against racism and intolerance is not going to be won on the battlefields of the Middle East. It is not going to be won on the streets of San Fransisco, New York City, or Washington D.C. It's not going to be won by standing up in front of the nation and crying "Racism" because miscreants and criminals are treated harshly by the judicial system. No... It's not. The war against racism and intolerance is going to be won at the grass roots level. It's going to be fought by each and every one of us. It's going to be won on the streets of your neighborhood, in your schools and churches. It's going to be won by treating your fellow human being with respect and dignity, by reaching your hand out to the one in need.

The next time somebody stops so you can cross the parking lot at Walmart, give'em a little wave. Hold the door open for the little old lady, even if it takes her two minutes to get there. Say thank you the next time the man holds the door open for you, even though he could easily have let it slam shut before you got there. Say "Thank you, Sir" to the teenager who got out of your way when you said, "On your left!" Every little thing you do, every day adds to the foundation of equality espoused by Dr. King.

Don't just pay lip service (to the King of King's). Live the Dream. Every day.

Have a great weekend, y'all!

Wes

OSN: 3500 meters, 1:14:00, 3x300(swim,kick,pull),3x200 (swim, kick, pull), 1x1500, 1x500(c/d)

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Riding in the Soup

As much as I like being all hard core and stuff, reality reached up and slapped me on the buttocks today :-) The forecast had called for rain pretty much all week, but I figured it meant "rain", as in a passing shower and not the primordial soup that was swirling outside my window today.

The clock ticked ever closer to my lunch hour, yet the wind and drizzle did not dissipate. I waited a few extra minutes before heading down to the parking lot and grabbing Bags out of the back of the SUV. It looked like it had cleared up a little, but reality was still a cold stiff breeze and tiny rain drops blown sideways in the air.

Unfortunately for me, I did not came prepared. I came to ride in 55-60 degree weather with the sun shining. Fortunately for me, Ms. Dee Dee always keeps a hoodie in the SUV for cold days. I put that sucker on and I was good to go.

Now, Bags and I have been wanting to ride Columns Drive together for a while. The last time we rode fo really reals fast was when I took her out to the Silver Comet one day. We had a great time too. I could only muster 15-17 mph on the straight aways, and I did see 21 mph on the Garmin on the gentle declines, but my legs were still sore from yesterday, and I really couldn't give it all I got. Another thing is Bags is a 53 cm bike, and Aerowyn is a 56 cm. Riding a smaller bike definitely takes a little power off your pedal stroke.

One thing I do like about riding Bags is my transition to running is very fast. Just take off the helmet and gloves and go. One of these days, I may put a set of clipless pedals on her :-) More often than not now, I'm having to remind myself to slow down. My legs just seem to want to run at pedaling pace or something like that. All in all, it was a good brick, and the rain stopped about half way through, proving once again, no guts, no glory.

Wes

OCN: 15.2 miles, 1 hour, 15.2 mph
ORN: 1.56 miles, 15 minutes, 9:56 mmp

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

It's Been a While

Well, I did something this week that I haven't done in a long time, and that's skip a scheduled workout. My legs and especially my shins were just shot from my referee matches on Sunday. I went ahead and spent my time in the pool Tuesday, but I opted out of the 6x400 meter intervals. Mentally, I was ok with this. OK. I was a little uncomfortable. I mean, I was replacing a scheduled workout with an unscheduled workout. I am NOT training to be on the podium, so the lost of intervals doesn't really concern me. What does concern me is that my OCD self does not have the mileage from my ref games to add to my logs :-) Boo!! I'm seriously thinking of opting out of the rest of my Tuesday runs if I ref on Sunday. I'll play it by ear and see how my legs hold up on the pitch...

It was back in the saddle today though! Aerowyn is still in the bike shop getting her new look. It was me and Bags on the road again. I was obviously feeling much better than last week as I turned in a little over 15 miles in my allotted hour. I was pretty happy with that. The change of routine (to the peak routine) in my strength training both stretched and worked over my sore leg muscles, but they held up well enough.

Tomorrow brings one more day of cold air, then we are going to warm up over the next couple of weeks into the seventies! I hope to try out my new wet suit in the lake this weekend. So many other local peeps have already beat me to it, it's downright embarrassing ;-)

Happy Hump Day, y'all!!

Wes

OSN: 2700 meters, 1:04:12
OCN: 15.2 miles, 01:01:34, ~14.9 mph