Thursday, September 20, 2007

some more training and an aquathlon RR...(mega photo edition)

You gotta love San Diego in September. Empty beaches and killer weather.

Well it's the final week leading up to Xterra nationals and things are a little hectic. On the training side things are going really well. I am feeling really good in the water, on the bike, and my run is feeling very solid. I got some strange news on Tuesday and I'll get to that in another post.

Taking sunday off was defintely the right call. I have been feeling very fresh and strong throughout my workouts this week, and they've definitely been tough.

AM: Bike - road ride
Lunch: stretching/core

Tuesday:AM: Masters
PM: trail run with race pace intervals

AM: MTB with race pace/LT intervals on the climbs
Lunch: Stretching/core

AM: Masters
PM: Aquathlon (1000m swim/3 mile run)

an incredible day for a race... good 'ol SD.

The race last night was a good time. My plan was to use it as my last hard run workout in my last build week before Tahoe before I back it off a bit. I really wanted to have a good/smart swim and run very hard. Mission accomplished. I got down to La Jolla around 5pm and just sat around and made the usual rounds of friends and conversations. It seems most people have already started their offseasons, are getting ready for last one big blow out, and then there's me. My two big races of the season take place in the next 5 weeks. Jim was out there to race as he gets ready for Kona as well as some other fast dudes.

pre-race photo... what am I scowling at???

I warmed up with a trot down to the pier and back (1.5 miles) and just swam about 100 yards. My arms were definitely feeling the 4000 yard masters workout from the morning.

Swim - 1000m:

the start. I am in the middle of the pack in the green cap.

The beach start was pretty typical and I chose a pretty good line and had a straight shot to the first buoy. I was a little inside of it and had to back track a bit as I made the first turn, no worries. At this point I was swimming sided by side, stroke for stroke with 4 guys. I got hit in the face pretty hard and also dunked one time. Good times. We stayed side by side for a minute and I decided to pick up the pace a bit to see what would happen. They all stuck with me so then I knew what to do. I dropped back and then latched on to some feet. No use in wasting all my energy if they would pull... and they did. We got to the last buoy and they were fading and I was feeling good so I picked up my pace and headed into the shore.

Run - 3 miles:

It seems like our pack got gapped quite a bit by the leaders and there were quite a few (7-10) guys out on the run ahead of me. Time to "do work". I worked my way into 6th at the first turn around (.75 mile) and was shadowing the 5th place guy who didn't want me to pass him and I could see all the guys ahead of me including Jim, leading the race, and Emilio DeSoto in 2nd. I pulled up side by side with the 5th place guy and he didn't want to back off, I put in a surge, he hung, so I put in another one and he backed off. I decided at that point that I needed to be in 3rd by that next turn around (1.5 miles). I ran hard and was able to run into 3rd with each guy giving me a challenge. It was rad. I love it when people make me work harder than I want to. So I was in third as I headed back down to the pier but Emilio, 2nd place, was still had quite a lead on me. I passed Paul (he was out the just doing the run) and he cheered me on to go get Emilio and get 2nd. I lock in on Emilio in the distance and just started to close the gap. I was working very hard. When I got to the final turn around (2.25 miles) I was only 20 yards behind him. I caught him quick on the final lap and just tried to blow by him. He responded to my pass and surged to catch me. We were running shoulder to shoulder. So there was only one thing to do... lay it down. I made another move, got 10 yards ahead, and then he tried to respond and as soon as he almost got back up to me I picked it up another notch and then just kept running harder and harder all the way to the finish to build a pretty good gap and take 2nd place.

1st - Jim Vance
2nd - Me!
3rd - Emilio DeSoto

(L to R) Emilio, Me, & Jim with our rice crispy treat medals.

It was definitely one of the harder 3 mile runs I have done and it felt great. I love running that hard. Not necessarily when I am going that hard and it feels like I am going to puke, but afterwards it's very satisfying knowing you pretty much went as hard as you could have.

After the race I hung out for a bit, had some pizza, and then called it day and headed back up to north county. The Triathlon Club of San Diego is rad and I am very fortunate to have it a training resource. I have met a lot of killer people and got in some killer training with the group. I mean where else can you blast yourself in the Thursday night aquathlon, chat with Bob Babbit, Jim Vance, Emilio DeSoto, and loads of other awesome people, and then chow down on killer food?

This morning I woke up early to get in a ride because the forecast was calling for rain and I wanted to get it in before it started. When I headed out just after 6am there wasn't a cloud in the sky and the sun was just coming out. It was perfect out, a little cold, but it felt great. It's now 2pm and the sun is still blazing. What happened to the rain?

Below are some more photos from the aquathlon, food, and other random stuff from the week. there is also a little video of me from the race from Brian's (our new club president) blog.

Sequence from the race. I think it's at the 2nd turn around (1.5 miles in)

here's a little video from Brian's blog. I am the one running from left to right as I head out for my second lap. here's the quote from Brian's page:
"James Walsh, the second place mens finisher is seen here running down Amanda Felder who won for the womens. Time to work on that swim James!!"

new breakfast concoction (thanks beth): Cheerios, Kashi Shredded wheat, puffed corn & wheat, granola, bluberries, a banana, protein powder, and chocolate almond milk.

another killer burger: lean hamburger patty, whole grain bread, grilled peppers & onions, cheddar cheese, roasted tomato salsa, and a chipotle ranch sauce

getting it done!

it's getting to be that time of year. In order get out of the door before 6am I had to break out the lights.

making sure they still work.


Daniel said...

nice pics.

Paul said...

Nice job James! Solid effort to pull down second place. I'd love to get one of those cookies some day...

barndog said...

man...that's pretty inspiring to know how hard you can run. Like three gears in overdrive. Impressive, but please...learn how to swim! Ha! Looking forward to the news. Sponsors?

Guernsey Man said...

Okay now I really miss it!