"I like you. I'll gladly sit down and have dinner with you after the race. But when the gun goes off, I pretty much hate you, and I want to stomp your guts out. That's racing." -J Rapp
"Have faith- trust in the plan - the breakthrough will come. I promise. " Woo
“The only time you can be brave is when you’re afraid.”
Monday, January 31, 2011
Looking at my workouts, I can see that Chris is pushing me to another level already, especially on the swim, but also a bit on the bike and run as well. There's an extra swim and run workout this week versus the same week in 2010...I am expecting this for the duration of 2011---I am not convinced there are more boundaries for me to break through. They will be on the brink of impossibility, but that's what this is all about for me...to push my own envelope, not to failure, but to places I don't know exist.
I'm back to focusing on my workouts much like it's a job...I always get a smirk on my face when someone asks me about my workouts; I think it is mostly because I know they will have a hard time comprehending them, and think why the heck I am doing it at all. The smirk behind it is my mind saying "I know you're going to think this insane but...(enter the weekends workout here...). I really have no answer to their comment of two words: "you're insane." Mainly, it is! And sometimes it's a slugfest with myself---a part of me is victorious (usually the mental side), and part of me goes down with the punches (muscles mainly here)....I guess that is what it is all about. Overcoming that mental challenge time and time again---telling your body it can't quit, it can't give up, and then backing that up by charging up some hill on the bike, finishing that last mile of a long run, or getting every rep in with consistency in the pool---that I think is what toughens you up both for the battle/challenge to follow at a race, or, for that matter, at work, at home, or driving down the road.
I seem to be writing a lot about the mental side of things lately...I think I have figured that once you get to a certain point, your mental toughness is what leads to success or failure. I believe in Kona that will be the difference between having a great race and "just finishing." I'll just keep logging the miles and challenging my toughness to the point that, come race morning, I've dealt with the struggle over and over again in training, now, I'm tapered, fresh, fast, fueled, and ready to fly....let's see if this becomes reality over the next 9 months!
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
My training was pathetic---only 2 runs of 2 hours, and both were failures---GI problems on one, and was just too tired from a long day at work on the other (Brick workout: 9 hours of work straight into 2 hours running...the hardest brick!!). Neither one was faster than a mid 7 minute pace---and I'm going to try to run 6:52/mile? This was going to hurt or break me, or both! So, the 3:00 goal was a pipe dream in my mind going in...last weekend I considered switching to the half, and I had delusions of just quitting half way through because I feel so "out of shape" for trying to run this hard. I didn't feel like I was doing the right thing by trying to run 3:00 with the big year ahead, but I am not one to back down from the challenge---one of the many things I learned from this race!
So here's the Report:
I met up with a bunch of buddies, including John Dean, who was running the half with his daughter Amanda (how cool that must have been---Sophia and Jenny, we're doing that in 15 years!), Dan, Bryan Dunn and his wife, Craig, and Derek. We warmed up in the "Warm Zone" provided by Red Rock Co, which made the morning very pleasant in a 70 degree tent versus the 44 degree start line. My GI system was in full working order, as I made a "pit" stop with Craig as we guarded for each other, if you catch my drift ;) Off to the line, we met up with more buddies...so it was Dan, Craig and myself going for 3:00, James Bruce going for 3:20, and Chris Bergeron going for 3:15, as well as Michael Sullivan with a friend of his whom he was "pacing."
The gun fired, and we were off! Good news through the first mile: 7:00 on the dot. It is soo hard to hold back at the beginning of races with all of the energy a race gives you. In the first 10 miles I was a little ahead of Dan and Craig as I latched on to a group of 4 (all from high elevation country in Colorado). The miles flew by, I was feeling decent! Pace was right on target for every mile, averaging 6:52/mile through 10. (10K: 42:38/6:52 per mile) The "GI" system acted up again as I rounded the corner at 24th St & Camelback in the Biltmore...so it was off to the porto potty at the next aid station. Let's skip that minute, and then I was back out there, and thankfully Dan and Craig were about 30 yards up the road---perfect! So this is where the fun began! I caught up to them with a bit of an "interval," and was feeling light ;))) We were now heading into the part of the course I hate (and Dan too)...but first, we hung a right onto 44th St---actually a nice downhill, down wind section where the half way point is: (half marathon stats: 1:30:25/6:54per mile)--considering the bathroom stop, I was good, but we were behind! Worse yet, the left hand turn onto Oak St and then working our way up Indian School is just tough---from mile 14 to 18 you just have to put your head down and dig in. Thankfully, we saw some local triathletes along the way (Karen Lewis, Brian Henry, Tracy Britton), and when running with Dan, it seems like someone every 1/4 mile was saying "way to go Dan"....he is truly a celebrity! Two years ago, this is where I started to fall apart after going out in a 1:28 for the first half, so the demons were there (finished 3:28 that year---2:00 second half, ouch! A big blister was the culprit on the ball of my right foot).
|New Shoes! Nike LunarEclipse---AWESOME|
for longer runs I hope!
|good news about running in brand new shoes---tread data! |
I was landing right on that blister line!
We made it! We went to battle with that course, and I came out of it with a lot of things, but most importantly, an unspoken bond with Dan Cadriel....he's just a SOLID guy, in every way. I'm sure I will use the memories in Kona when it starts getting ridiculous, and I hope I will have Dan there to battle with me (no pressure Dan, but you WILL qualify at IMCDA--your run is already there, and your bike is not far behind---work that swim!).
I went into this race totally unprepared; from a lack of training, to no specific nutrition plan, to GI issues because of it, to running in shoes I hadn't run more than 200 yards in (see below)...but I came away with so much "data" personally that I feel like I broke through some boundaries I thought were unbreakable---and I don't recommend following this game plan! I've heard it a thousand times: pros are able to deal with the pain better than the amateurs. With that being
said, one of my goals for endurance racing and in life, is to handle
what life throws at you--and come out a better person...hopefully!
|Post Race in my 2XU compression tights...another|
part of the ritual.
I came out of this one a better athlete and a stronger person for sure.
It's now 2 days post race and I'm feeling back to normal, the blister has
given in and I'm looking for to the build for Tri season!
Saturday, January 15, 2011
So what does this race in Kona mean to me? After starting triathlon in the early 90's, names like Allen, Scott, Newby Fraser, and the likes were my heroes. There was no internet, just Triathlete Magazine, my training buddies, and that was it. I was very fortunate to be in Davis (UC DAVIS for college). I crossed paths with Dave Scott from time to time---we worked out in the same gym... I am yet to see a human specimen in as good of shape as He was. I remember him doing seated quad raises, seeing every strand of his quads fire as he worked out...the year was 1991. So from then on I was hooked into the sport, not because of his quads, but because of the commitment and challenge the sport requires, and that it is truly a "you get out of it what you put into it" sport. I've seen every Ironman TV special since, have cried numerous times watching it, sometimes because of the special interest stories, and sometimes just because I was imagining what it would be like to tread at the start, hit the turnaround in Hawi, run on Ali'i Drive, hit the Energy Lab, and then the finishing shoot. I've seen 1000's of photos/videos of competitors as they finish that last mile---it has to be one of the most fantastic moments in a persons life---imagine thinking about that for 15 years, add in the fact that I was away from the sport for 9 years thinking it was something I would never reach, and then imagine it is going to happen this October 8, 2011! Good news for me is I thought I'd be a mess finishing IM AZ; I did lose it a few times on the run when I realized I was going to qualify, but I held it together and finished without a tear! So who knows what Kona will bring out of me, "I imagine I will be a blubbering mess" (a quote I've heard on the TV Special over and over again).
With all of that, my family has seen me through this sport over the years..my dad's worry, my mom's support (and Inta's too!). Yes I am more responsible about pushing the limits nowadays (IV drips hopefully are a thing of the past), but I think the training is the riskiest part...the race is a celebration of that hard work, whether it's a 5K or an Ironman. Training and racing is a spiritual thing for me...it's not about results but more about what can I do with my body---physically and mentally. My long runs and long rides are full of thought---sometimes trying to figure out the worlds problems, sometimes self help, and sometimes dreaming of the Queen K Highway---it was a delusion until November 21, 2011. I am so blessed to have the life I live in, and there have been so many times I come home from a workout fresher than when I walked out the door for those reasons. In a way this sport does really help me find who I am, what is important to me, and find what in life really matters and is significant---would you call this a religion?
I actually thought that I would not do another IM distance race after IM AZ. The training was intense, overwhelming, and sometimes pushing me way beyond the limits I had set my own mind. Breaking those limits has done more for me than I could have imagined. Riding 300+ miles in a week down the California coast, throwing on my shoes and running for 2.5 hours at a good pace like it was no big deal....it has made some of life's other challenges so bearable and easy to overcome.
So here's to my support crew...you all know this has been a life long journey for me, and Kona is just one destination on it that I get to share with every one of you. The race is less about a time or a result, but about seeing what I am made of, what I can challenge myself with, and what more can I get out of this life...and, "because it is there"...I have no desire to climb Everest, just to let you know I am still somewhat sane....
Sunday, January 9, 2011
Yesterday, in my mind, marked the beginning of the 2011 season. Kind of ridiculous for this time of year, but it just had to be done this way: a 45 minute morning run at 4:30am, a 3200 yard swim at 5, and a 2 hour trainer session (base ride) from 8:30pm to 10:30pm. Oddly enough, when my head finally hit the pillow at 11:15pm, I felt energized to be back at it! Yeah, I didn't stop working out, but between the cold weather here and a calf strain, I have been training for about 10 hours a week since IM AZ...not a lot, but not a little either. I feel that it was just the right amount to feel like it was "off-season" and not taxing on me mentally or physically....so I feel ready to go again ;)
In 8 days is PF Changs Marathon...I am very curious as to how I will do with the limited training, and with issues on every long run I have done recently (GI, calf strain....), I hope to show up to the starting line healthy, and the race will be what my body gives me. It's more or less a training run for me in prep for Ragnar Ultra on Feb 24-25. Today is a swim and a run, then off to Payson to play in the snow with the family, along with 2 runs tomorrow up there...a nice change of scenery!
I'm going to start to blog more frequently from here on out, so feel free to "follow" this in the side bar link (it's always nice to see who reads this...I hear from a lot of people about it, but otherwise I don't know if anyone is reading my "diary!"
Next up: I've been wanting to write about what going to Kona means for me...that will be next, and is where the reference above about my family going will be mentioned ;)
Anyways, Happy 2011...here we go! ...and a cool clip to end...more of these to come on future posts!