Apr 03

Mother Nature You Are An Evil Temptress

Seriously, make up your mind, is it Spring or not?  If not, that’s cool (not really), but I’ll deal with it.  Just quit this wishy washy crap.  Today we had rain, snow, thunder, lightning, hail, and more rain.  What the hell?  It’s April!

Yesterday, I had a great bike ride.  The weather was “eh”.  Not great, but not as bad as today.  I had a 2.5 hour ride scheduled and my goal was to find some hills.  I am on a quest to find some good hilly routes that will get me ready for the hills of Madison.  I have been getting some awesome advice from Kristin, a two-time (soon to be three-time) IMWI veteran.  I am a still a little nervous about the bike course, she has given me some great training/course tips and has helped put my mind at ease.

Cycling 4-2-2011, Elevation - Time

The course I did had some challenging hills.  It was actually part of a course I used to run in high school for cross country.  I can’t believe I used to run up these hills. I had intended on doing the hills twice, but somehow missed the turn back to do the loop again.  When I got home, I realized that the road I was looking for changed names which is why I missed it.  Oh well, I’ll be back to ride them again. 

For nutrition, I had one bottle of water and one of Gatorade and a package of Gu chomps.  I took water or Gatorade every 15 minutes and had half of the chomps at an hour in and the second half at 1:45.  This was the first time I had the chomps and I definitely like them better than regular old Gu.  The only problem is that because it was so cold out, I felt like was chewing them in slow motion because my mouth/jaw was frozen.

Towards the end of the ride, I had to deal with some freezing rain, but not enough to be much of a bother.  It was the wind that was biggest problem.  My feet never really warmed up no matter what I did.

Despite the weather, it was a very good ride.  I was comfortable on the bike the whole time which I attribute to spending so much time on the trainer this winter.  Once this weather starts to cooperate, I think I am going to have some great long rides this summer.

Today, I made the mistake of going on my long run this morning without paying too much heed to the forecast.  I had been outside to let the dog out and it didn’t feel that cold.  So, I threw on some shorts and a short sleeve shirt and head out on an 8 mile run.  By mile one, I realized my clothing choice was not at all optimal.  I could feel the temperature dropping.  And then is started raining.  And then snowing.  I was FREEZING.  The only silver lining was that at the halfway point, I turned around the wind was mostly at my back.  But at that point, I was soaked through and through.

By the time I got home, I was beet red (from the cold and wind) and shivering like an abandoned puppy.  Thankfully Jennie took good care of me and got me a towel and made me some hot chocolate.  I eventually warmed up but learned my lesson – always check the forecast before heading out.

After warming up, I got ready for my second workout of the day, a swim.  Jennie came with me and went to the grocery store while I swam.  It worked out perfectly because when I was done swimming she was ready to check out.

The run and swim wrapped up the first official week of training.  It went very well and spirits are still high.  Bring it on week 2!

Totals

  • 4 Runs: 20.45 miles, 2h37m
  • 4 Bikes: 95.86 miles, 5h18m
  • 4 Swims: 8,900 yds, 2h39m
  • 2 Strength (Yoga & Back/Biceps)

The Life of a Dog

And finally, if you think your life is hard, you are wrong.  Your life doesn’t include having to lay around deciding on which of a half dozen toys to play with.  Now that would be a hard life.  Enjoy.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2011/04/03/mother-nature-you-are-an-evil-temptress

Apr 01

This Week So Far

Week 1 has been progressing beautifully.  I have been in a super good mood pretty much all week.

On the work front, I think I have found the perfect schedule for being able to get my work done and my training in.  I have shifted my hours so that I start earlier in the morning and then finish around 3:00 in the afternoon.  This works out great because I am already up in the morning for my early morning swim.  I basically start working right after my swim and plow through the day. Because I am starting earlier, I get a good hour and half to two hours of uninterrupted work done because the phone isn’t ringing and inbox isn’t dinging.  When I finish up at 3:00, it gives me plenty of time to get a workout in, walk Bailey, and even do a chore or two before Jennie gets home from work.

On to the training front.  I’m going to start with today’s swim because I am ecstatic with how it went.  After talking with Jeff, I have decided to forego the Matt Fitzgerald swimming schedule and continue with my Workouts in a Binder routines.  The Fitz plan had me doing 1800yd swims all week and I have been doing 2500yd per swim during the offseason, so it almost felt like slacking off to follow the Fitz plan.  Today, however, I ditched both plans entirely and did a straight 2500yd swim with no breaks.  I felt better than I ever have in the pool.  I took my splits every 10 lengths (250yds) so that I could easily keep count of all 50 laps (100 lengths).  I ended up clocking in at 40:15 which works out to 1:36/100yd!!! I’d have to go do some checking, but I am fairly certain that is the longest I have kept up a sub 1:40 pace.  My goal for IMWI is 1:40/100yd, and at this point, I am fairly confident I can hit that.

I had sort of a funny sighting after the swim.  As I was getting into my car, a women came running out of the rec center in a bathrobe wearing a backpack.  When she ran by, I realized it was Tammy (the woman I met who is doing IMCdA). She smiled, waved, wished me a great day and said that she was off for a bike ride, so I guess she was working on her transition time!  haha.

As for my other workouts, I had an accidental great speed workout on Wednesday.  I thought the schedule called for a 45 minute run with 3x3min intervals with 3 min active recovery.   And that is what I did.  But when I got home, I reread the schedule and it was supposed to just be a 45 minute Z2 run.  Whoops!  Oh well, the speed work felt great.  I ended up with a 7:31 pace for the workout with about a 6:40 average on the intervals.  However, after the workout, my lower back started to bother me.  It is still a little sore today, but the swim definitely helped.

Yesterday was my first brick of the season.  In one word: humbling.  It is amazing how much a brick workout kicks my butt even when I have kept my training up through the offseason.  Does it ever get pain free to transition from the bike to the run?  Despite being humbling, it went fairly well. It was a 45 minute bike with a 15 minute (turned 22 minute) run.  On the bike, I focused on doing the last 3 miles at a high cadence and just spin my legs out.  That definitely seemed to help with the transition, so I’ll have to remember that.  Once on the run, it took my legs about a mile to loosen up, but it took my feet nearly the whole 3 miles to warm up.  I had that cold, tingly feeling in them the whole time.  Not fun.

No complaints on the biking front. I’ve had two rides and they have both been short, easy rides.  Saturday will be my first long outdoor ride at 2.5 hours and of course the temperatures are going to drop to the upper 30’s/low 40’s rather with the chance of rain.  Woohoo… :-/ I’d complain more about the weather, but I know that I don’t have it nearly as bad as my fellow triathletes in Ohio who got 3” of snow or that crazy girl in Maine who was expecting 12”!

So far, week 1 is a win!  Let’s keep this going for a another 23 weeks!

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2011/04/01/this-week-so-far

Mar 28

The Journey Has Begun

Today marked day 1 of my Ironman Wisconsin training plan – finally! I have been waiting for this day for months.  Thank you everyone for the well wishes on Twitter and Facebook today to get me moving.

I’ve mentioned this before, but in case you forgot, I’m using the Matt Fitzgerald level 7 training plan. After seeing the success that DRog and Jeff are having with the plan, I can’t wait to chart my own progress. 

Today’s workout called for a 1800yd swim and 1 hour Z2 bike ride. And tomorrow’s workout? A day off. Wait, what? Oh, that’s right, Tuesdays are my scheduled day off. This is a bit of deviation from the actual plan which has the off day on Mondays.  Tuesdays work better for me, so they are going my off/floater days.  If there is another day that I know won’t work for a specific workout, I can always move it to Tuesday.  Otherwise, I think I will aim to do yoga on Tuesdays as way to rest and recover.  I am also going to try and fit at least one more core/strength workout per week into my training.  Even if it is just 30 minutes, I really felt and noticed a difference in my offseason training once I started incorporating a little strength training.

My swim this morning was super easy compared to what I have been doing in the offseason.  I have been working my way through Triathletes Workouts in a Binder book which has me doing 2500-3000yds per swim, so 1800yds was a walk in the park.  I got some great advice from Jeff on how to approach the swim training – Thanks again Jeff.  I am going to follow the plan for the first week to see how a 4 day swim week (compared to 3 day) affects me.  I’ll reevaluate after that and then may start to up my distances ahead of schedule to get back to what I am used to.  I’m fairly confident in my swimming thus far and am not too worried about that aspect of training. (as a non-swimmer, I never thought I would hear myself say that).

My bike ride this afternoon was nothing special.  I road the Reeds Lake Triathlon course which is about 20 miles.  I had the wind at my back on the way out which meant I had to fight the it AND the hills on the way back.  It took it easy though and worked on keeping my cadence up and not pushing too hard.  It was only about 36* out, but with gloves, headband, tights and shoe covers, I was actually very comfortable.  I am really hoping that I can put the trainer away for the rest of the year.  Optimistic, I know, but a man can dream right?

Any ways, it was a great first day and my spirits are high!

If you are interested in seeing my workout plan, feel free to check out the Google Calendar in the sidebar to the right.  You can see the actual details by clicking on a particular workout code.  Or you can see a calendar view here.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2011/03/28/the-journey-has-begun

Mar 23

Wiki Wiki Wednesday

I’m going to try another wiki wiki post.  Maybe this will become a weekly feature.  It is nice because I can jot down notes throughout the week and do one quick post out of them.

Last week was a successful easy week.  I finished up with doing only one workout per day (except for Thursday when I did yoga and a run).  It was just what I needed before starting to ramp it back up.

This week will be a moderate week before the official start of the training plan on the 28th.

Just in time for training to start, the high school goes on Spring Break which means the pool will be closed from April 4th to the 10th.  Crap.  I have a couple options for alternative pools so hopefully I can work something out.

I did an hour on the trainer on Sunday.  After a couple rides outside, I was quickly reminded how much trainer rides suck.  With the weather cooling back off this week, I better suck it up because I’ll probably be back downstairs so more.

I finished up my Cupcake Marathon on Monday with my second 13.1 mile run.  My second run was about 2 minutes faster than the first one.

On my Monday run, I saw ran past a woman going the other way who looked familiar.  As we passed, I turned around and yelled, “Are you training for a triathlon?”  “Yeah, an Ironman,” was her reply.  A kindred spirit.  We stopped to chat for a couple minutes.  She is training for CdA and her husband has done IMWI twice before.  I realized that the reason she looked familiar was because we swim next to each other at the pool.  Haha.  It is amazing how different people look with a swim cap and goggles on.

I saw a Robin today.  That should me spring is here.  However, Mother Nature didn’t get the message because we have had a combination of snow, sleet, and ice the past two days.

image image

In a win for healthy eating, The Whitecaps, our minor league baseball team, released the winner of their contest for a new menu item.  The winner – Chicks with Sticks – Fresh veggies served with hummus or ranch dressing.  Previously, the winner was the 5th/3rd Burger named after baseball park (and Midwest banking chain).  The burger weighs in at 4,889 calories and was the center of a Man v. Food episode.  It is refreshing to see that a healthy snack could win out against the disgusting unhealthy competition.  Check out the slideshow here if you want see the losers including a the Walking Spaghetti, a 16-inch loaf of Cole’s garlic bread, smothered with a pound of spaghetti, meatballs, a quart of marinara and a pound of cheese. 5,630 calories.

I bought a box of Wheaties.  I don’t think I have ever eaten Wheaties.  I am not a breakfast person at all.  If I eat cereal it is generally Cheerios (with a healthy spoonful of sugar), Lucky Charms, or Frosted Mini Wheats.  So why did I buy the Wheaties?  Because Macca was on the front of course!  Regardless of whether you pro-Macca or anti-Macca, the fact that a Kona winner was on the Wheaties box was just too good to pass up. 

image

Finally, DRog over at DR: Tri’ing 4 Iron sent me a great link for IMWI tips. From the article, “the IMWI bike course, in our opinion, is the second most challenging on the US Ironman circuit, holding the title for years before IMSG stepped up to take the title.”  Excellent.  DRog – I’m counting on you to be volunteering at IMWI now.  Everyone else (names not needed, you know who you are) is skipping out on IMWI to go to some other event instead.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2011/03/23/wiki-wiki-wednesday-2

Mar 21

The Decision

After doing some serious thinking, it is time to announce my decision.

If this makes no sense to you, read this.

I found that it is difficult to make a video with a puppy.  I had to start over twice because Bailey interrupted filming.  I should have saved the screw ups for an outtakes roll.  Whoops!

And now, if you want to see a decent video, check out the first two minutes of Rio.  Professional Pet Groomer and Lawn Mower, Jon at SwiCycloRun, did all of the feather and fur work and the movie looks like it is going to be awesome!  Go check out his give away and sign up to win!

Permanent link to this article: http://www.ironmanbythirty.com/2011/03/21/the-decision

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