Monday, July 30, 2007

Solana Beach Triathlon.. the end of a big week.

Another big week down.

I went into the weekend with a about 150 miles of riding and 15 miles for running in the legs. I also got in a couple of open water swims. This race was just going to be a threshold/race pace workout for me so there was defintely no tapering going on. I did take it relatively easy on Saturday with a 45 minute open water swim work out and a 45 minute ride on my Time Trial bike with some race pace efforts. Saturday was the first time I had been on my TT bike since I got off it at the California 70.3 on 3/31. So I cleaned it up Friday night, it still had GU spilled all over it from the 70.3, and got it ready to go.

I woke up at 4 am Sunday morning and really didn't feel very motivated to get up. I love the fact that Xterra races start between 930 and 1030. 7am is too early to race! I was tired but I managed to stumble downstairs for coffee and that did the trick. After a couple of cups of coffee and a peanut butter Power Bar I was out the door. It was only a sprint so I didn't really need or want my normal 500 calorie pre-race oatmeal.

The race is only 10-15 minutes from my house so I got there pretty quick and just as they were opening transistion. I got a killer spot and just hung out talking with a bunch people I haven't seen in a while. About 6:20 I warmed up with a couple miles of running and some accellerations to race pace. I felt ok, but pretty flat and still kind of tired. I headed back to transition put on my wetsuit, took some Ener-gease, and downed a Sugar-Free Max Velocity (Generic Red Bull made by Albertson's). and headed down to the beach. For my swim warm-up I swam about half the course, again with some accellerations to race pace. I felt good in the water and I attribute that to the fact that I had done open water swims on the 3 days leading up to the race.

The swim (1/4 mile):
I was in the first wave and it was the Elites and Males 29 & under. We lined up and then sprinted towards the surf. From the initial sprint to the water I knew the next 50 or so minutes were gonig to be tough. My legs felt like shit and immediately had that lactic acid burning feeling... and I had only run 50 yards! The swim was pretty mellow and I jumped around on a couple of pairs of feet. After the swim it's a long run to t1 and up a good hill/ramp. I ran the whole thing and passed quite a few guys.

Swim time: 6:53*

*There were a lot of timing mats out there and I have no idea where the transition times are added.

My wave starting:

At the top of the ramp:

Bike (9 miles):

T1 was pretty standard, in and out. Once out on the bike my legs were again feeling that sweet burning sensation and I knew it was there to stay so I just dealt with it. I went pretty hard on the bike with what I had in my legs. I caught some guys and was only passed by one guy and he was an elite. I also witnessed some blatant drafting going on with the elite ranks. Lame. I finished bike feeling pretty good and was really curious to see how much the run would hurt.

Bike: 25:22

run (3miles):

Heading out of t2 I knew I had a couple of guys in AG just ahead of me. I tracked them down and passed them along with a couple of other "non-elites" within the first mile. I picked up just enough to get a good enough gap so they would not have a chance of catching of me. I did run pretty hard which felt good.

run: 16:37 (5:32/mile pace - I am pretty stoked about this considering I have not done any kind of speed work since before the Xterra East champs on 6/17... and the fact that my legs were trashed and tired)

Heading out on the run... time do "do work":

Overall: 48:52
1st overall amateur (non-elite)
1st AG

Picking up the goods:

I am happy with the race. It was good to get out and go hard. It was also nice to catch up with a bunch of people I have not seen very much this year. I raced a lot locally last year so I met a bunch of people and ran into them quite a bit of the course of the season. This year I am racing way less and just training a lot more. My races, for the most part, have also been outside of San Diego. So it was defintely a good time chatting with people I have not scene in a while.

After the race it was home to relax a bit... and then get out on the bike. This was training race and I still had one more ride to get in for the week. I headed out for 2:15 and 35+ miles up and down the coast. Nothing hard. Just staying in my endurance and active recovery zones.

here's the weekly numbers:

Some random photos from the week:

Angels stadium. Right where I started my rides in Anaheim.

Santa Ana River Trail. Good flat riding. Good spot for doing specific power intervals.

End of Santa Ana River Trail. River Jetties. Waves were good.

This is the button I have on my trainsistion/triathlon bag. Reminder of the #1 Goal.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Back in SD...

After spending most of the week in Anaheim I got back home yesterday afternoon. Networkers was long and at times boring, but I did get to take quite a few good classes. I also was able to get in plenty of quality miles on the bike. It took avoiding most of the free partying and gettting up at 5am to get out to the River trail as the sun was coming up, but it was worth it.

Totals from the 3 days:
bike: 3 rides
Ride time: 6.8 hours
distance: 122.29 miles

1 run
run time: 1 hour
8 miles


2 core/upperbody sessions

Not bad for training on the road.

When I got home yesterday I headed out and got in a mellow open water swim and followed it up with a 45 minute run with mixed race pace intervals in San Elijo Lagoon.

With 10 hours of training already in the books there is no question than I am going to be racing Sunday on some tired legs, but that's kind of the point. The race next weekend (8/5), Xterra Snow Valley, is more important. The Solana Beach Triahtlon is short (1/4 mile swim, 9 mile bike, 3 mile run) and I just plan on having fun and blowing it out.

At this race last year I won my AG by almost 3 minutes and finished 4th overall. My only goal is to have a better swim and much faster bike. I am not sure I can beat last years run. I was racing a lot this time last year. Last season I raced 4 times in July. 3 trialthlons (Carlsbad, Camp Pendletion, and Solana Beach) and 1 10K (Scripps Old Pros). So my my speed was pretty good and I have pretty much been in base mode since my last Triathlon (Xterra East Champs) 6 weeks ago. I also have not been on my TT bike since I got off it at the Cali 70.3 on 3/31, but I got it all race ready and will spin around on it a bit the next couple of days. It should be a fun day regardless of the outcome. B&L is the main sponsors so all the boys and girls are coming out.
Here's the numbers from last year race:
swim: 6:07
bike: 26:05
run: 16:16
overall: 48:28

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

training grounds...

I think I am spoiled... at least as far as the where I live and get to train everyday. I am 4 miles from the ocean, have killer trails for running and riding a mile from my front door, and have numerous hilly cycling routes leaving from my house.

Yesterday I got in a solid day of training around my classess here in Anaheim. First thing in the morning (I got up at 5am and was on the road by 6am) I headed out to the Santa Ana River Trail, which is a couple of miles from my hotel. I drove there because the roads around the hotel are busy and there is no bike lane... Lame. Here's the trail:

I road from the corner of Katella, right by Angels Stadium, down to the coast and the cruised through Huntington Beach.

Later in the day I headed out for an hour run before heading to the Angels game. The run wasn't fun. I love trail running and was forced to just run on normals neighborhood streets... boring, but I got through it.

The Angels game was ok... I had quite a few beers with the boys and hit a late night dinner at the House of Blues in Downtown Disney. Not the healthiest foods but whatever.

Even with the drinks last night and not getting to sleep until about midnight I was up at 630 am and back out on the Santa Ana River Trail by 7:45. I didn't have any classes unitl afternoon so I decided to just go long and again just keep my power in the endurance zone (140 - 189 watts). I rode down to the coast again but this time headed south through Newport and on to Laguna. Here's some stats from the ride:

Entire workout (146 watts):

Duration: 3:06:581

Work: 1608 kJ

Norm Power: 161

Power: max 524, avg 146 watts

Heart rate: max 160, avg 137 bpm

That's it for now. I am ready to go home, sleep in my own bed, swim in the ocean, and cook my own food. One more day! I am going to ride again tomorrow morning and maybe throw in a run off the bike or just wait to run until I get home tomorrow afternoon,

Monday, July 23, 2007

Epic weekend and training on the road...

I just finished up a BIG weekend of training. I smacked myself down for sure. My plan all along was to get in a really big week last week because this week I am up in Irvine for Cisco Networkers and I will not have my normal means for training. So the plan was to put together three days in a row of swim/bike/run. Here's how it went down:

AM: 1.5 Mile Ocean Swim
Lunch: 60 min Hilly Trail run - 7.75 miles
PM: 90 min ride - Hood Hill Loop

Friday was good day. The open water swim and run felt great. I was pretty tired when I got home from work, but nothing a Red Bull and some Energ-ease couldn't turn around. Once out on the road I started feeling pretty good. I rode in all zones but didn't push it too hard after my hard hill interval session on Thursday, but layed it down when I wanted too.
Mean Maximal Power curve:

AM: 2500 yard swim
AM (after swim): 3 hour, 50 mile ride with 4500 ft of climbing
PM: 22 min, 3 mile run

I woke up early Saturday morning, hit the pool, and then headed to Pine Valley to meet up with Tom. We set out on a killer loop along Sunrise Highway in East County San Diego. Killer roads, little traffic, and some good sustained climbing. It was a solid ride but I was defintely feeling the workouts from the days before and was pretty shelled after I finished the last climb. Luckily I was only another mile from my truck and it was all downhill. Later in the day I got in an easy 22 minute run. I was planning on going 30 minutes but I was in hurry to get to the Padres game.
The route:

My post ride, pre game recovery dinner!!:

AM: 2000 yard Ocean Swim
AM (after swim): Brick - 1:52 MTB and 5 mile transition run

The swim in the morning was killer. I headed down to Flethcer's cove and got in an open water swim, but instead of the normal aerobic open water swim I knocked out some race pace intervals. There are two buoys that are approximately 150 meters apart so I warmed up, then swam 10 x 150 hard, and then cooled down. Then I grabbed some esspresso on the way home and then headed out on the mountain bike. This was my first time on the MTB since the race last weekend and I was stoked. I rode my local trails and did 3 repeats of my long loop. Tough stuff. I followed up the ride with a 5 mile run T-run to cap of the 3 days. Solid efforts but I was glad when I was done with the run.
Long loops:


Now I am up in a Irvine in a hotel room (The Marriot). It's killer but the classes I am here for can get pretty long and boring. I was in a training session today from 830am to 530pm with an hour break for lunch. Good info, but tiring. I hit the gym this morning for quick spin on the stationary bike, some stretching, and some core work. I brought my bike so tomorrow I am going to hit PCH and get in a couple of hours before my 1030am class and probably do the samething on Wednesday.

The hardest thing for me this week is going to be avoiding all the partying and shitty food. There was welcome reception tonight with free beer and food, and somehow I didn't even have a beer, but I did eat. They had some killer, fresh sea bass tacos... very healthy. I was stoked. There are also parties every night this week with some of our reps fronting the tab. Normally I would be indulging but I am racing the Solana Beach Triathlon this weekend and want lay it down on the road, and the I have the Snow Valley Xterra the following weekend. So I am sticking to the plan.

Here's a couple of photos from Saturday nights Padres game. It was a tribute night to Tony Gwynn (my favorite player of all-time). He's getting inducted in the the Hall of Fame this weekend and Saturday night they unveiled a killer statue at Petco Park. Too bad the Pads got their assess handed to them by the Phillies.
The statue:

20 seasons, 1 Team:

Thursday, July 19, 2007

rib update and training...

Thankfully my ribs weren't as bad as I initially thought. After taking 600mg doses of Ibueporfen and Icing things quickly turned around. There is still one area that is sore to the touch, but other than that I am back to training. I got an easy swim yesterday morning just to feel it out and it went well. I followed that up with a run at lunch, and again it felt better than anticipated.

As soon as I hurt my ribs I haven't been able to get this scene from "I'm Gonna Git You Sucka" out of my head.

I got in a solid ride this morning.
Time: 1:25
Distance: 20 miles
Ascent: 2790 ft.
work: 870 kj
Norm Power: 215 watts

I have been planning on doing hill repeats on San Elijo rd for quite some time but never got around to it. This morning I was on the road by 5:45 and knocked it out. My legs were feeling good. I did 3 repeats of the climb and succesfully descended each one. Each interval was 1.85 miles with 600 ft. of climbing.

The gains I have made in cycling in the last couple of months are keeping very motivated. I pretty much can't wait to get on the bike everyday.

Here's some data from the ride:

Last interval:

Duration: 10:07
Work: 168 kJ
TSS: 20.5 (intensity factor 1.101)
Norm Power: 275
VI: 1
Distance: 1.866 mi
Power: max 468, avg 276 watts
Heart rate: max 179, avg 168 bpm
Cadence: max 116, avg 91 rpm
Speed: max 17.9, avg 11.0 mph

yellow power, red heart rate, green cadence/rpm

I have a solid weekend coming up and then I will be out of town all next week for work... but I am taking my bike and planning on a big one before racing the Solana Beach Sprint Triathlon next weekend.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Rim Nordic #2: Bruised, not broken...

My second mountain bike race is in the book... It was a good time but it came with a bit of a price. Here's how the day played out.

I kind of stayed out a little later than I should of Saturday night which made my 4am wake-up tougher than normal. Once I got some coffee in me I was ready to roll. I was up in Running Springs around 745am.

My initial plan was to pre-ride a full lap of the course, but once out there I just decided to ride the first single track section, which was different from the last race. I rode for about 30 minutes, and checked out the course.

the race:

I lined up at the start line in hopes of getting off the line and the initial single track climb in better position than last time. I was able to get a good jump off the line hit the single track about mid pack of of around 25 guys. I immediatley started working my way through the pack and was feeling. My plan was just to keep pushing ahead and then make a big move on the long fire road climb.

I continuted to pass riders and right before the fire road there is super steep, sandy climb that everybody was hiking. At this point I was right behind a guy in my AG. He dismounted to hike-a-bike and I decided to make a move on the short climb (30 yards). I was able to clean the whole climb and the other riders were hooting for me as I was the only who rode it.

Then I was on the fire road and I dropped the hammer and dropped the group I was with and passed other groups of riders. I was now all alone and ahead of everybody I started with and was making my way through the waves that started ahead of me. At the end of the first lap there is a pretty fast, loose single track descent and I was following a guy that seemed to have it dialed... he didn't. He locked it up going into left corner and I was forced to the the same while trying not plow into him. It didn't work. I went down on my left side... HARD.

I jumped up and got right back on it but immediately know I had done some damage. My left side hurt and taking deep breaths did not feel good at all. I kept pushing. I knew I had a good lead based on time checks and the course volunteers. I just maintained and rode the 2nd lap a little more reserved.

I rode kind of sloppy the second lap but was able to hold of for the win and was 6+ minutes ahead of second place. After the race my ribs were pretty sore so I put some ice on it and hit the road.

Race stats (nothing like getting my HR up there):
Total Distance: 16.78 miles
time: 1:42
avg HR: 177 bpm
max HR: 198
total ascent: 2318
The spike in HR was when I was making my move on the fire road climb:

I woke up yesterday morning and my ribs were still pretty sore. I got in my schedule recovery ride and my legs felt really good. After the ride I went to the doctor to have him check out my ribs and make sure nothing was broken. Thankfull there are no broken ribs, but they are bruised and I probably strained my intercostal muscles. Lame.

My plan for this week was to go big and to do the club Aquathlon on Thursday night, but there is no way that's going to happen. I can still ride on the road, but swimming and running are kind of uncomformtable. So I am just going to take it easy this week and hopefully I will be feeling better by the weekend.

Friday, July 13, 2007

recovering... sticking to the plan.

First of all... I got in a killer 1+ mile open water swim this morning. The sun was out, water was glassy, and the water was warm. Good times.

Once I decided to start coaching myself I knew the biggest challenge was going to be not completely shelling myself and allowing myself to recover. After 3 solid weeks with a lot of riding the last 5 (today being the 5th) days have been all about recovery.

Recovery weeks are not fun. I really have a tough time getting up for a "recovery" run or ride. I like working hard and the thought of spinning up the coast for an hour is not my idea of fun but I know the importance considering how I feel the next day. This is also where having a heart rate monitor and power tap really help. On my Tuesday recovery run I was able to successfully keep the HR in zone 1 which even included having to walk at the top of a hill as my HR started to creep. Then on Wednesday I had another recover workout planned. This time it was just an easy spin up the coast and having the instant feed back from the power tap was key. Keeping watts in my "recovery" zone makes all the difference.

I have also got in some swims and yesterday hit a little bit of instensity on the mountain bike in preparation for the Mountian bike race this weekend.

more geeky training crap:
One of the new issues of Inside Triathlon (the Xterra edition) has a good article on the the PMC (performance management chart) that is used in cycling peaks. Below is mine for the the last month of training all the curves look like about what I am aiming for considering I am in a base period right now. Right now I am doing some research to learn how to add swim/mtb/run workouts that don't use power. Basically you just have to assign them an IF (intensity factor). We'll see how it works...

One more thing. Check out these videos from Xterra Japan. Gnarly stuff. There is chance I might try to do this race next year because my cousin is in the Navy and just got orders to Japan!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Big week... time for some rest.

First of all. The new look of the blog is thanks to Mallie. She did a killer job. Go to her site, donate some $$$ to a good cause and a good event, and get a killer layout.

Well this past week was a big one with a lot of good riding and some really solid runs. The swim volume is not really where I want it to be but I am really focusing on the bike right now and aerobic hilly runs so I'll have to deal with those numbers slipping a bit.

The highlight of the week was my ride yesterday. I headed to Alpine with Tom to ride a new route. On Saturday he suggested we ride a portion of the route from The Alpine Challenge. I hit the pool for an easy swim beforehand and we were out on the road a little after 8am. The ride was killer. Considering the week I had already put in, including riding the 4 days prior, I was shocked at how good I felt. Maybe it was the mid-ride sugar-free Red Bull and Power Bar, but I felt really strong and full of energy during the last hour of the 3.5 hour ride.... and appartently Tom did too as he was dropping me on the long, fast descents. The only bad part of the ride was that my Power Tap kept cutting in and out and I got a flat. I had my Garmin in my jersey pocket so here the stats from the ride:

Time: 3:23:11
Distance: 50.51 miles
Ascent: 4923ft. of climbing

After a couple of big weeks it's time for some rest. This week will be pretty mellow and then I have a mountain bike race on Sunday. I should go into it pretty fresh so it should be a good time.

Weekly totals:
swim: 4500 yards (2 swims)
bike: 185.88 miles (5 rides)
run: 22.06 miles (3 runs)
3 week totals:

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

July 4th and a change of plans...

I was supposed to head out this morning with Tom to ride Palomar but I tweaked my neck/upper back on Monday and it's still kind of tight. I have no idea what happened. It's the same thing that used to hapeen quite a bit and I have kept it in check with regualr chiropractor visits and massage.

I swam Monday morning, felt great, then as I was walking up the stairs to my office I felt a twinge right under my right scapula (same place as in the past). Sitting at my desk it continued to lock up. It got to the point where turning my head to either side resulted in a lot of pain. Luckily I already had massage and adjustment lined up for the afternoon. My massage therapist and chiropractor got me feeling better but I was still hemmed up.

I woke up yesterday morning and it was really stiff. I called my chiro and was able to get an early appointment. Another hour massage and an adjustment and I was feeling much better. I continuted to loosen up throughout the day and I even went on a run which really loosened it up.

Now it's Wednesday and it was still a little stiff when I woke up but it's going a way. Hopefully this does not become a regular thing like it was a couple of years ago because it will definitely hinder my training plans.

I really wanted to get in 4 hours in the saddle today, but wasn't sure with my neck/back. I took a hot shower, stretched, and then headed out the door. I started with a loop close to my house so I could pull the plug if I wasn't feeling it. I felt good so decided to got for it. I continued with a hilly ride in North County and then headed down to Torrey Pines. I climbed the inside twice, the outside once and then headed back. The way home had plenty more climbing as well.

Here's the stats and some geeky charts from the ride:
From the Power Tap/Garmin

Duration: 3:52:47
Distance: 58.725 m
Total Ascent: 4789ft.
Norm Power: 196
Work: 2163 kJ
Heart rate: 174(max) 142(avg) bpm

Power (red = HR, yellow = power)


Mean Maximal Power Curve:

Time to fire up the grill...

Monday, July 02, 2007

Official Name Change.

ok... I hope this doesn't screw up people who read my bold, but I am changing the title of my blog.

It's now: Blood, Sweat, and Beers.


1. I do need sleep. With as much as I kick my ass training I need the rest.

2. My brother came up with the title. He thinks Xterra should change their slogan from "live more" to "Blood, Sweat, and Beers." I agree. I pretty sums up why I am so addicted to Xterra and have pretty much written off road triathlon. It's more of a lifestlye.

so that's it.

Starting from scratch...

Well kind of... With my season half way over and my "A" races in October (Nationals 10/1, Worlds 10/28) it is time to get back to some base training. The last couple of weeks have been good with a lot of riding. I am going to be focusing on a lot of long, hilly rides both on and off road. Same thing on the run. I am cutting back on the interval runs in favor of aerobic runs in the hills. Swimming won't change much. A couple days in the pool and a couple days of open water.

This past week was the 2nd week of 3 week cycling focused block. I got in 171 miles on the bikes (122 on the road and 49 off road). Some good quality stuff too. Saturday I hit my local trails and got in 2.5 hours, 22 miles, and 3500ft. of climbing. Then Sunday I backed it up with a long road ride, 3:29, 54 miles, and again 3500ft of climbing. Suprisingly, my legs feel better than I thought they would this morning. This week is going to big on the bike again with the highlight being riding the infamous Mt. Palomar on Wednesday.

Elevation chart from Sundays ride:

Power data from Sundays ride (yellow = power, red = HR)

To get in some extra miles, and avoid traffic, I have decided to start riding to work on Fridays. Friday was my first go and it was killer. So Friday I got in two rides and changed up the routes. With the San Diego Fair in full swing and the upcoming Horse races my commute has been horrible on the way home. 40min to 1+ hour to drive 15 miles. I would much rather be riding bike past people in traffic than sitting in my truck.

#1 to work:
19.9 miles
1059 ft. of climbing

#2 heading home
18.4 miles
971 ft. of climbing.

That's it for now... back to work.