Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Monday 5.30.2006 - Good Weekend

Memorial Day weekend is over and I escaped without too much damage. As far as training goes, it was all about running and swimming.

1 mile ocean swim - Solana Beach - rough surf

coached run workout - ski beach
10 min warm-up w/ strides
intervals -hard running with 90 seconds recovery
4 min
3 min
2 min
1 min
4 min
3 min
2 min
1 min
2 min
2 min
2 min
10 min cooldown

Long run - 90min - 12 miles

1 mile Ocean Swim - La Jolla cove

Right now I feel totally recoverd from all my workouts. In the upcoming weeks I have some very challenging workouts lined up, but at the same time more easy days (just swimming) than I would normally schedule myself. The best part about having a coach is that I just get to sit back, do the work, and let someone else worry about the details. Of course I will not follow along blindly. It's defintely important to let the coach now how you are recovering and how you are feeling.

I have also been surfing a lot. I have surfed the last 4 days in a row, which wouldn't have been a big deal before I started training for triathlon. I am planning on getting in the water a lot more. Nothing is more relaxing than getting the water for a couple of hours with my friends and getting some waves.

I also made it through the weekend without comsuming too much junk food and beer. It was good to get to have a relaxing weekend bbq'ing with friends and relaxing (no racing).

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Thursday 5.25.2006 - things are changing

This past week has been pretty interesting for me. First of all I have had time to reflect on my race performance. I am definitely happy with pulling off a second place at a pretty big event, but there is a lot of room to improve.

here are a couple things:

1. the swim - i need to swim harder. My goal in this race was to just cruise and not get caught up with any body. I accomplished this goal, but at the same time didn't really race in the swim. The guy that beat my already had a 2+ minute advantage coming out of the water.

2. T1 - it went good except for my mountain bike shoes. My current shoes have a wrap around tongue and can make them hard to get into with wet feet. I am in the process of getting new shoes so this won't be an issue again.

3. the bike - just push harder and stay on two wheels.

4. t2 - i had trouble getting out my shoes and got passed in transition by a guy in my age group. i was able to drop him in the run but that won't always be the case. Again... I am getting new shoes.

5. The run - just run harder. Once again I still had quite a bit left in the tank after the race.

The other significant thing that happened this week is that I have decided to start working with a coach. My new coach has won both the Xterra Amatuer world championships and Nation championships. He is currently racing pro on the Xterra circuit, trying to make the 2008 olympic team, and I feel he can get me to the next level. The next couple of months should be very interesting for me. I have already seen the plan I am going to be on for the next couple weeks and it's going to push me harder than I have worked so far. I can't wait.

next race: Xterra East Championships - Richmond, VA

Monday, May 22, 2006

Monday 5.22.2006 - Xterra is tough!

I am beatdown right now. My legs, back, and shoulders are all sore. I am tired but couldn't sleep and I have to get to work early this morning for a meeting.

So here's the report from the weekend at the Xterra West Championships:

I headed out of my house around 11am and got the campground around 12:30. I checked in and immediately headed down to the Xterra compound/race start. The bike and run courses were already marked so I walked around for a bit and then suited up for a pre-ride. I ended meeting a couple of people to ride with and one of them was Larry Oneil. He is a very accomplished Ultramaronther and has won several 50 and 100mile race. Super cool guy and the other was a 40+ year old woman from Northern cal that smoked me on all the downhills.

the course was gnarly. tons of climbing and some really sketchy, fast descents.... and it was about 90 degress and sunny.

After the bike I decided to walk/jog the run course. the run was nuts. More climbing than any run that I have ever done and the descents were so steep that you really could even walk down them without going into a full-on sprint while trying to stay upright. It was tough, but I knew that a hard run would definitely be to my advantage so I was stoked.

After that I headed back to camp, made some dinner, and crashed early.

I headed down the race site to check out the running races (5k,10k) and the Duathlon... and get some free stuff.

It was hot so I didn't stay down there too long. I met up with some people that I had met at previous races, hung out a bit and the headed back to camp for a nap and some shade.

Sunday - Race Day

I got there about an hour and a half before the start, got body marked and set up transition.

The Swim:
The swim course was a big 1500m triangle starting in waist deep water and finishing with a 50 yard run up a hill to transition. My plan for the swim was to just to cruise and not get caught up with too many people, and stay a little wide. I was in the second wave (15-34) two minutes behind the pro men and women.

So the cannon went off and we all took off, it was a pretty big wave. I got hit a bit but not too bad, and my goggles almost got knocked off. After about 200m I was able to totally relax and just swim. I wasn't going fast but I was smooth. About half way through I started passing some pro men and women (obviously not the fast pro swimmers). So I finished the swim feeling really fresh and headed to T1.

Swim(.93 miles)+ T1: 25:10

The Bike:
Right out of transition you go into a steep mile long climb. The bike was going well, i was passing more of the pro women and AG'ers that were ahead of me in the swim. about half way through the loop I hooked up with Danelle Kabush (pro woman that I met the week before). I just hung on her wheel and followed her lines. She is damn good on a mountain bike. With about 3 miles to go, on the last steep downhill I went down... hard. Over the handlebars and the bike flipped with me. I landed on my side in a bush, got right up an took off. I only lost about 10-15 seconds. I had a couple scratches but nothing major. So I just hammered to get to T2. I got passed on the bike by a couple of male pros and a couple AGer's, but only one in my AG (25-29). I had no idea what place I wan in. I was thinking 5-10.

Bike(19.5 miles) + T2: 1:33:31

The run (death march) 60% climbing, 30% descending, 10% flat:

Again right out of transition you go into a brutal mile+ climb. The run was hard but I wanted to track down the guy who passed me on the bike. I came right out of tranision with the guy that beat me in AZ but I just pushed ahead on the first climb and got a big gap on him. I passed quite a few people on the first part of the run (it was a 1.5 lap course so you didn't do the huge climb again, but there were still tons of hills to be climbed) but none in my AG. Then near a turn around I saw the guy that passed me on the bike. I was on a mission to track him down. I caught him, and blew by him at the end of the first full lap. At that point I just got a second wind and started to push. I had a really fast second lap and was so stoked to hit the finish chute:

run(5.5 miles): 43:14 - 7:51/mile (the winner ran 8:11/mile pace)

overall time: 2:41:55
2nd in AG

I am so stoked. With a second place I have locked a spot for nationals and also 1st and 2nd place in my AG get slots for the Xterra World Championships. so yeah... I am going to Hawaii in October. Pretty unbelievable. The field was tough but I just raced hard and stuck with my plan.

Did I already say how stoked I am????

Friday, May 19, 2006

Friday 5.19.2005 - making decisions...

So I decided at the last minute yesterday to not do the Tri club aquathon. The race was going to be a 1000m swim followed by a 5k beach run and I really wanted to do it, and had been planning on it. Then while sitting in my office yesterday afternoon I started to really think if going out and running a hard 5k would have any positive or negative affects on my upcoming A race on Sunday.

I wasn't worried about the swim taking too much out of me but it was the run that was giving me second thoughts. The run was on the beach and I could just imagine sand getting in my shoes, getting blisters, and just generally trashing my feet. I also considered doing the race and just running at 3/4 speed, but knowing my competitive nature I knew that me taking it easy was unlikely.

It also took me longer to recover from last weeks tought duathlon that I had expected. My calves really took a beating in the hills. Instead of the aquathon I did my own tempo run on the trails of San Elijo lagoon.
10 min warm up
10 min race pace
10 min cool down

that's it. simple.

I was feeling really a good about my decision until I got on the computer this morning. I checked the tri clubs web page and they already had posted photos of the race. And who was there racing... everybody. Including Jim Vance, local Xterra pro, and Danelle Kabush. Danelle Kabush is from Canada (She's in town for the race this weekend) and races pro at Xterra. I met her last weekend at our club Duathlon. Maybe it would have been a good tune-up... maybe not. I run into this with training it seems every week. I start to question my plan. Am I training enough, hard enough, recovering enough, tapering long enough??? We'll find out this weekend enough. IMMIKE touched on this in a really good post this week. Check it out... it's a killer blog.

Here's a race report from the Aquathon by GuernseyMan. He cleaned up and finished second behind Jim Vance! I am very stoked for him and all the little grommets that competed in the Quackathon.

so my taper... after my ocean swim this morning I would have to say it's working. This is the first time I have ever reduced swim volume going into a race, and I felt better in the water this morning than ever before. I breezed through a mellow 1+ mile swim. I only got in the pool twice this week (usually 4 pool swims a week and 2 oean swims) for a totally of 4800 yards. I feel really strong and rested.

I am heading out to Temecula in a bit for a pre-ride and will be camping all weekend. So it's here. My A race. Hope it goes well. I will defintely be posting a report when I get back.

Photo from last weekends DU.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Sunday 5.14.2006 - it's working...

A couple of months ago I made the decision to stop working with my coach and to start doing everything on my own. I was kind of apprehensive, but with my results so far this season I know I made the right decision. As soon as I started coaching myself I made up a detailed plan leading up to next weekend, the Xterra West Championships. I made sure to cut the volume back on weeks that I had races but I also continued to build through the races in order to be able to put in my best performance next Sunday.

I think my plan worked...

Two weeks ago was highest volume week and also the Spring Sprint race. It was a really hard week but things were going good. This past week I cut the volume back just a bit and kept the inensity up. Coming into this weekend I was feeling good. I have never been able to climb this good and with all my early season races and brick workouts I able to run very strongly off the bike.

On saturday (yesterday) I raced in a the tri club offroad duathlon. I went into this race wanting to see how strong I really was and if my training leading up to my "A" race had worked. I mean with only a week left there is no way I can increase my fitness or do anything to make me faster or stronger.

The race was unexpectedly hard. It was an offroad duathlon (2.5 run/7 mtb/2.5 run). the runs started with 1/4 mile straight up hill and then there were 5 or 6 significant climbs after that and the bike also had 6 good climbs... but this is what I have been training for.

I had a great race and won by over 5 minutes. I just went all out to see what I had in me. I am feeling good about this and have a lot of confidence going into next week. I know the competition will fierce. There are people from all over the country coming to his race and all the pros will be there too. I can't wait.


AM - 1 mile ocean swim
Lunch - easy 4 mile run

AM - club race (2.5/7/2.5) - then I road 5 miles afterwards

AM - 1.2 mile ocean swim
8 mile run

I am really cutting things back this week. here's what it's looking at:

mon: rest
tues: am - masters swim/pm easy ride/run
wed: am - swim
thurs: am - easy ride w/ race pace intervals/pm -club aquathon (1000 yard swim/5k)
Friday - ocean swim - travel to temecula - pre-ride course
Saturday - walk/run run course
sunday - race... it's on!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Thursday 5.11.2006 - flying by....

I can't believe another week is already over. Being so focused on my training and so busy at work makes the weeks and months fly by. Temecula is next weekend. I really can't wait to see all the pros take on the same course I am and be able to compete against some really talented athletes.

Over the past couple of weeks I have really been focusing on my climbing on the bike and pace intervals running on trails. The runs at an offroad race are considerably harder than a road race. I think due the terrain I havent been pushing myself hard enough in the run. I have never felt after a race like I gave it everything I had in the run. I have always had something left in the tank. So here's my race plan for Temecula:

Just hang within 30 seconds of the leaders which is pretty much what I have been capable of. Except for the race in Az... I was first in my AG out of the water.

Crush. Just totally go for it and charge the hills. I have not any problems thus far running off the bike. Even after the Castaic Lake race... that bike was brutal.

Just see how hard I can go until I hit the wall. I am going to try and push the whole way. No starting out slow early, no saving anything for final kick. Just run the 10k as hard as I can. If I blow up I know I will go out giving it everything I have.

So that's it.

AM - Masters swim - 3600m
Lunch - weights/stretching
PM - Track workout - trying to run at 5:30/mile pace
2 mile warm-up
2 x 800
1 x 1600
2 x 800
1 mile CD

AM - 26 mile ride:
home to TP and back
1 x tp inside
1 x tp outside
Lunch - core/stretching
PM - work swim - 1700m

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Tuesday 5.9.2005 - it's getting close

the race is getting close. I have about a week and a half left until the Xterra Western Championships in Temcula. I am really looking forward to this race and also a chance to see all the pros take on the same course.

I have defnitely been putting in the work and believe I will be ready to have the best race I can. Since the Xterra races and about the length of an Olympic distance race (around 2.5 hours for temecula) I do not really have to have a long taper. I am kind of dialing things back just a bit this week and next will week will be pretty mellow with just some swimming, short race pace workouts, and then a pre-ride/jog of the course.

training so far this week:
AM - Masters - 3000m
Lunch - 18 min easy spin/stretching/core

AM - swim work pool - endurance workout - averaging 1:24 on 100 repeats
Pm - Brick - 90 min tb/24 min run

I am tired..... and want to go to sleep but the Padres are tied with the Brewers in bottom of the 8th and they have won 9 in a row... this could be 10.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Sunday 5.7.2006 - Race Report - Spring Sprint

Not really sure what's going on.

Today I raced in the Spring Sprint triathlon at Mission Bay. I almost decided to not do this race at all. My first "A" race of the season is 2 weeks from today. The Xterra Western Championships in Temecula. All my training has been focused towards this race. I decided to just train through this race and just use it as speed work out. Here is the training I put in this week including a really tough mountiain bike yesterday (hill repeast at Daley Ranch).

Bike: 4h 34m - 68.87 Mi

Run: 2h 18m 44s - 16.6 Mi

Swim: 4h 50m - 14640.2 Yd

Strength - 55m


I went to go check in and pick up my packet and realized that this was going to be a big event. This race is pretty much the kick-off for triathlon season in San Diego. And with San Diego being the triathlon mecca that it is this race brought some pros, a lot of newbies, and 800+ in the triathlon and about 200+ in the Dualthon. The pros/elites included FELIPE LOUREIRO, EMILIO DESOTO, HEATHER FUHR, PAULA NEWBY-FRASER, SIAN WELCH. Jessi Stensland was also there hanging out and doing some video interviews for GNC.

Sunday - Race Day.

- woke up at 4am
clif bar

on the way to the race and while setting up transition I sipped on a 16oz bottle of water mixed with 1 scoop of carbo pro.

I set up my transition area and then began to get a little intimidated. The transition area was broken up by waves and I was the first wave in the water (29 & under and Elites). Now... i know i have really good bike but I was surrounded by people with $3k+ bikes and 2k wheelsets. For some reason this part of the race always intimidates me.

Right before the race I slammed 2 enervitene "cheerpacks". I have been experimenting with these in training and decided to give them a shot.

Swim - 400m:
This was by far the roughest swim I have encountered so far. My wave had about 80 people in it
(29 & under and Elites). I got kicked, elbowed, punched, grabbed, and dunked. The first 100m were like a wrestling match. I finally decided to swim wide and got into a groove and felt good. Overall all I had an OK swim. If I would have got out a little more in front and not got beat down I proably could have take some time off the swim.

Really fast. I was probably in the top 20 and passed quite a few people in T1.

bike - 9 miles - 2 loops:
I felt like crap on the first loop, I just didn't have any juice in my legs. I did get to pass Paula Newby-Fraser and Heather Fuhr which was kind of fun. By the second lap I started to feel better. I passed some people on the bike and according to my bike computer averaged 23.5 mph over the 9 miles.

fast again. Racked my bike, slipped on the shoes, and I was gone.

Run - 3 miles - 2 loops:
I suprisingly felt great on the run and just went hard the whole way. I can't wait to see the splite times.

1st in AG (70 competitors)
6th overall (800+ competitors)

I am beyond stoked about winning my first race. The top elite only finished about 2 minutes ahead of me. I really think I could have hung with him if I would have tapered at all and had a better swim. After racing the tought Xterra courses the past couple of weeks it makes a road Tri (sprint) seem like a walk in the park... things are looking good.. I can't wait for Temecula.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Thursday 5.4.2006 - back to the grind

I have been kind of slacking when it come to posting lately. I have been super busy at work and with training so some things gotta give.

I am in yet another training course this week for work. The company I work for and my boss will pretty much approve any courses I want to take that relate to work. Right now I am taking another VOIP class. Eventhough I have been supporting VOIP networks for the past couple of years things are always changins so there is ALWAYS more to learn. The class so far has been pretty interesting but I still find it hard to keep my eyes open when 3 o'clock hits. Enough of the boring work/tech stuff....

This will be the highest volume week I have been put in a couple weeks. I am doing a local sprint tri this weekend but am training right through it as i continue to build towards the Xterra West Championships on 5/21. I signed for this spring months ago, and at the time I was really excited for it. I think it was the first tri I officially signed up for, but my training progresses far faster than I had anticipated and have since taken on much more ambitious goals. The race should be fun though. I am just going to put the pedal to the medal. The race is considerable shorter than I have been racing and training for:

400m swim
9 mile bike - flat
3 mile run - flat

I am basically just doing it for a speed workout and have pretty intense mountain bike ride the day before. We'll see how it goes.

training this week:
AM - recovery swim
- 2500 yards
AM - stratching & core workout

AM - Masters swim - 2600 yards
PM - Brick (bike - 90min/26miles - run - 30min/4.5 miles)

AM - Masters swim - 3550 yards
PM - Hill workout - 55min - 10 repeats - killed me!

AM - Masters swim - 3100 yards
PM(after work today) - ride - intervals - fiesta island

time for class!!!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Monday 5.1.2006 - BB Offroad Triathlon - Race Report

another one in the books...

Big Blue Offroad Triathlon (Xterra Point series race)
4.30.2006 - Cataic Lake, CA

swim: 2 x 600m laps separated by 50 yard run
bike: 2 x 8 mile loops
run: 2 x 2.5 mile loops


The race didn't start until 10am so I woke up around 6am and had a solid breakfast.
1 whole wheat bagel w/natural peanut butter
1 banana

on the drive:
1 x 16 oz bottle of water w/ 1 scoop of carbo pro

7-30am - 945am
setting up transition and until start of race:
1 x 16 oz bottle of water w/ 2 scoops of carbo pro
1/2 of clif bar
1 gel (15 minutes before start)

The swim course was really interesting. It was 2 laps and was shaped like and "M". You started from shore swam out to buoy 1 and then back to the beach, ran 50 yards up the beach and around a flag, and then headed out and back to buoy number 2.

the start was rough and i got thrashed about. I usually let the fast guys go ahead of me and did the same here. Unfortunately and bunch of slower swimmers decided they would line up in front and to the inside. so for the first 300 meters i had to swim hard get through them. I was hurting on the first lap and my heart rate was way higher than i wanted it to be. I hit the shore after lap 1 and the 50 yard jog didn't help to lower my HR. Lap two was better and i passed a lot of people and picked up my pace. I finished in the top 15 and then ran another 50 yard to T1.

I am not sure what my official swim time was but I was out of t1 and on my bike pedaling away at 19:29 (on my watch).

slower than usual. I decided to wear gloves this time and it took me a second to get them on my wet hands. Don't know if i will keep wearing gloves, or if I just need to get some that go on easier.

This course was tough. Tons of climing. Of the time spent riding the 2 x 8 mile loops about 75% was spent climbing. Just long sustained climbing and a lot of single track. You really had to pick and choose where you made your moves. The last quarter of each loop was some super fast, rough single and double track. The bike was really solid for me. I got passed by two guys who were both in different AG's and I passed about 4 guys as well. I don't what else to say except that the ride was really hard. I came straight out of the water right into climbing. My HR felt like it was maxed out for the first 20 minutes of the ride. Taking fluid was pretty tough too, but I managed to finish 2 x 16oz bottles of my new mix (2 scoops carbo pro/2 tabs of NUUN). It worked really well for me. I also had a gel that I taped to the top bar of my bike. I took the gel on the final stretch heading into T2.

the guy in the rack next to me had thrown his wetsuit on top of all my perfectly laided out gear. It took me second to grab my shoes, race belt, and visor. It still went pretty quick though, but could have been faster.

Really fun run. It was really hot (85, sunny, no wind) but I was feeling strong. The two loop run consisted of road, fire road, and technical single track. the single track ran along a creek that you had to cross numerous times. I had to climb over and crawl under fallen trees, cross the creek by jumping from rock to rock, running on a tree, and at one point just jumping over it. It was tough. I passed some guys on the run but didn't know what AG they were in (no body marking.. lame). I felt like I had a solid run and defintely negative split the two lap course.

I don't remeber what my official time was, but I think it was about 02:10:00.

2nd in AG
Top 10 Overall

Through out the whole race I never saw the guy that beat me and he ended beating me by about 1 minute (guess). He was ahead of me in the swim and then stayed ahead in the bike. It was hard to make up ground on the bike becuase it was 90% single track. To say the least I am stoked. More Xterra points!