Friday, August 12, 2011

Able to let go of running but maybe not triathlon

It's been three months since Ironman St George and I have come to pretty good terms about letting go of my road racing / competitive running due to my knee but letting go of my Ironman dream is not so easy I have found.

I continue to bike to and from work each day keeping up a good exercise routine, and have stabilized and started to reduce the post IM weight gain. However, I am pretty sure that if I was not starting a Doctorate come September I would already be registering for Ironman St George again and just dealing with an alternate running training regime.

I guess that is the "push". While my knee is not up to the hard core running training needed for me to be happy with performance in competitive road racing I think I can train around the issue and still race triathlons. Since I know that the knee can't handle too much abuse I don't really have a desire to race the general local triathlon races but am still interested in racing the big events and just being extremely disciplined in training between them.

This week I did a short 5 km run because I was going nuts and did it somewhat up-tempo and wearing the knee brace. No pain during or after but I know that is because I have been nice to the knee since Ironman.

For now, it's biking to work (140km / week), an occasional swim and golf.

However, deep inside the Ironman dream still smolders like a damp campfire that refuses to die. I guess the blog lives on.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ironman St George Detailed run course data for treadmills

2011 Ironman St George Run Data for treadmills (in miles) Repeat twice.

.25 @ flat
.25 @ 6%
1 @ 2%
1 @ 3%
.5 @ 6%
.5 @ flat
.5 @ 2%
2.25 @ flat
1 @ 3%
.5 @ flat
1 @ 4%
.5 @ flat
.5 @ 2%
1 @ flat
.25 @ 2%
2 @ flat

Note course is changed for 2012

Also, see my updated page on race preparation with learnings from IMSG.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Light week of workouts for post Ironman recovery

My plan this week is fairly simple. Relatively easy bike commutes to and from work with easy lunch swim, water run or weights with a longer workout on Saturday. Lunch today was a 2000m swim, my standard 500m technical warm up and cool down with 10 x 100m main set using pull buoy and paddles on a 1:45 cycle and averaging about 1:27 per 100m. Bike was an average 35 to 40 minute commute to, and then again, from work.

Trying to start focusing on more sleep so after an evening with the family headed for bed before 10:00 and some reading and a quick blog entry so I can be up fresh at 6:00 am. Regardless of my racing plans this feels like a good schedule, perhaps even getting to bed 30 minutes earlier would be good.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

One Week after IMSG

It's been a week since Ironman St George. And it has been a tough week. I had focused so much on the race and while having a pretty good race given the heat it has left me feeling somewhat incomplete and also feeling goal less. After seeing the aerial photos of the race I realize that by swimming the shoreline at St George I added a significant bit of extra distance to the race and that would explain at least 4-5 minutes of my extra time.

My recovery has / is going well as I was hardly sore at all after the race given that I did not go very hard on the run at all from a muscle standpoint. By Monday morning I was doing stairs with luggage without a problem and really the main discomfort was sunburn on the shoulders and back of hands. Using the compression tights most of Sunday and Monday I am sure helped me out a lot.

We made the drive back from St George Monday and Tuesday and I was back working Wednesday. On Thursday night I did a 500m jog and realized the knee was a bit tender so went back to the house and switched to my mountain bike for a very short (15 minute ride). Friday I did a 2km swim workout (500m technical, 1100m moderate interval set, 400m technical).

By the time I got to Friday night I was now seriously considering the Chinook 1/2 Ironman in mid/late June which is Provincial Championships. Time for some serious reflection on what training I should do over the next 5 weeks.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Full Race Report - Ironman St George - No excuses, no regrets

Anyone that knows me even a little bit knows I love to talk about my races. I will try to get all the detail here so I can share the short version in person and if someone really wants to know they can check here for all the gory details.

From my short race report you know that I didn't qualify for Kona, sad, but I am still happy with the day. First order of business is my lists of thanks.

First, my thanks to God for the strength and ability to have trained as much as I had done with all my other duties as well as for the help on race day. It could have been a catastrophic day and I know the prayers and well wishes of everyone was heard as I was able to get through a really tough situation.

Second, my thanks to my family, it was absolutely thrilling to have my children all there to see me to do an Ironman, as well as my mom and Brien. They had seen other races but not Ironman and I loved having them all there to cheer me on. I also am grateful to Ken for his letter he gave me before I left Calgary. It meant a ton and his advice was really helpful for me on race day.

Third, thanks to my friends and colleagues for their support as I focused and trained for this race, and tolerating my near obsessive focus on Ironman. Without your support it would not have been possible and also in particular my boss, Lee.

Finally, thanks to my wife, Melanie who allowed me to gear up properly and shouldered a much larger burden at home while I trained and being willing to sacrifice the family funds for my preparation and for getting to St George. She knows what it takes for Ironman and she was there for me. Much love.

PS. Thanks to anyone else that I have missed that supported me along the way.

Ok now for the full report. No excuses and No regrets. Given what happened during the day I am totally at peace with how I trained, prepped and raced yesterday. Race morning preparations went off perfectly, I had a good 6 hour sleep and was quite ready the morning of the race, got in the water and did a warm-up and was really optimistic.

Swim started a little off as I went and made a last minute tweak to my goggles and ended up getting them partially on the outside of the cap so the first few hundred meters I needed to adjust them for leaking but I was able to realize what had happened and got it fixed. I thought the swim was going well, I was working it harder than I expected and was pretty satisfied with my pace until I got out and saw the clock. 1:09:42, I was in shock and disbelief as it was my slowest swim at Ironman ever, and well back of what I am capable of. Others around me were all on pace and Bernie was at 1:01 and change. I knew at that moment Kona was a really long shot giving up 8 minutes on my competitors and decided I just needed to keep to my race plan and see how the day panned out.

Transition 1 Swim-to-Bike was better than usual but I had planned it out well, except a needed bathroom break, not usual, and losing a sock from my bag. Kudos to the volunteer near me who offered up his sock so I could get going on the bike, talk about great help. As I got up we saw the other sock behind the chair so I quickly switched back. Even with all that I managed an under 6 minute transition, so was now 10 minutes off pace.

The bike started really well, I was patient and dialed back my heart rate pretty fast to where I needed it to be. I then started getting fluids and gu chew blocks in me for energy. Over the course of the bike leg I averaged about 3/4 a bottle an hour of fluids and 300 calories from gels etc. Bike heart rate by 30 km segments was 130, 130, 137, 124, 130, 138 and 129. The two spikes were the hills from Gunlock, the wall and out of Veyo up the hill. I was completely ok with that and I was willing to ride the top end of my range to keep a pace close to my goal. Passed my good friend Bernie mid way through the second loop just before the big climbs started. The descents into St George were very windy with head wind and cross wind and really buffeted me around. The arm coolers worked very well as I would continually get water on them to keep my temperature down. It was very very hot out there.

For me the real surprise was how many people I passed on the bike, usually on the bike I lose a LOT of places and all my training on the bike paid off as I moved up the field. Overall average of 30.8 km per hour for a 5:50 split. However, another 8 minutes off the pace I needed and I knew Kona was now officially out so just be smart.

Transition 2 Bike to Run went better than T1, another bathroom break (plus one I did on the bike so you could tell I had worked to keep my hydration up) and I was out pretty quick, left my sunglasses in T2 but that didn`t cost me too much. Under 4 minutes which was pretty good I thought.

Then the run, I started the run and legs felt fine but I realized how hot it had become. I shuffled along and couldn`t get the heart rate down and run at any sort of pace. Watched everyone flying by me on the run as I just plodded to keep from a blow up, which later I realized was inevitable. 10 minute mile paces through the heat and hills and the hottest part of the day where it was 33 C (92 ish F) at the finish line but hotter up on the bluffs on the course. On the way out the run I saw Bernie when I was about a mile and a half out and he was returning on the bike. It looked like I had about a 20 minute lead on him.

I ran and drank and used sponges at every station doing everything I could to stay hydrated and cool but it was a losing battle as I couldn`t get enough in. Ice in the cap, cold sponges in the trisuit, I was executing the perfect heat management routine but it wasn`t enough, and salt tabs periodically to help there as well. On the way back from the first turn I saw Bernie again and guestimated my lead to have gone up to about 22 minutes but I knew I was in trouble overall and on pace for about a 4:13 marathon. By 10 miles I realized the heart rate was mid to high 140s on average (almost 10 beats over what it should be off the bike for Ironman pace) and it was now spiking to 160, 170 and over 180. Not good so I decided I better watch health over racing hard since Kona was no longer on the line. I walked very briskly from mile 10 to mile 16, getting more water in me, completely soaking arm coolers, compression socks, trisuit to try and recover, but even walking I was 120 to 180 heart rate.

On the way out my second loop I saw Bernie coming in and he was now only about 9 minutes behind me, 13 minutes gained over 6 miles, I figured he would catch me at about 16 miles and I hoped I would have recovered enough to run or jog with him and finish together. After cresting the hill at 16 miles and not seeing him I decided to run the downhills regardless of the heart rate since it wasn`t controlled anyways and then walk the up hills. I found new life and actually started to feel better as the temperature dropped a bit as the sun started to set and the wind picked up more to cool me. Still dehydrated I was keeping the same management plan in place and returning back on the second loop I was surprised to see I now had a 30+ minute lead on Bernie. Cresting the hill on the way back I ran almost 100% of the final 4.5 miles and ended up with a faster second loop than first loop. Go figure. I had a hoot coming down main street and took my time to enjoy the finish. Final time 11:52, faster than IM Canada and IM California, slower than both Ironman Florida races.

Family were all there to greet me at the finish and cheer me in. My Ironman dream complete, just not quite how I expected. Given the cards I was dealt with I have no places where I can see what I would have done differently. Without knowing what happened on the swim I can`t fix that. An almost perfectly even bike ride at the right heart rate and managing the run the way I did I can`t think of any improvements.

The kids asked me if I would now start eating the off limits foods I had self imposed and if I would try to keep the same fitness levels. I thought a lot about that this morning as I lay in bed thinking about the race and the day and life. I have decided for now that I will probably not race anymore triathlons for a while until I feel the urge and if my knee fully recovers (by the way the knee held out great, used the knee brace for the second loop).

As for the no chocolate and no ice cream (plus other bad foods) thing I will celebrate the event with sharing an Oreo Blizzard from DQ with Aryana and while I might occasionally have some of the |banned| foods on a rare occasion I probably will mostly avoid them. For fitness I have come to really enjoy the bike and will use that as my main exercise and start commuting to and from work again by bike with a good ride on Saturdays and swim about 1 to 2 times a week to keep the swim shape up.

No excuses, No regrets!

St George Race Report (Short)

I will give a longer race report later but the short report is that I had a brutal swim and no idea why, I thought it was going well but came out and saw 1:09:45. Rode the bike to the planned heart rate and ended up 5:50 on the bike in hot and windy conditions and then on the run ran to heart rate but with the 33 C heat just couldn't keep the heart rate down. Marathon was 4:43. Still broke 12 hours on the toughest course in extremely tough conditions and had my best Ironman finish in placement ever (324 overall and 52 in age bracket).

I want to thank everyone for their support and well wishes and for all my family that came to watch or watched online.

Happy Mother's Day

Friday, May 6, 2011

Final Post before the Race

Greetings from a VERY hot St George Utah, anticipating 92-93F as a high on race day. I was hoping for a bit milder weather but it is what it is. If anyone is interested in following me along in the race I am racing bib number 1406 and you can enter it in the section for athlete tracking (upper right)

This race culminates a 9 month training stint of 530 hours and 1728 km running, 8156 km biking and 259 km swimming.

In order to qualify for world championships I will need to finish in the top 8 in my age bracket and somewhere around 10 hours and 30 minutes. My personal best is 10:48 at 1:04 swim, 5:42 bike and 3:54 run with 8 minutes of transition time. My goal is to go about 1:02 swim, 5:40 bike and 3:42 run with 6 minutes of transition time.


Ironman St George Bike Loop Video and Pictures

It was a little late but here is the video of Ironman St George Bike Course with some still pictures of the course.

Video of miles 0 to 18 on the bike

Miles 19 to 22 are already captured as part of the run course

Video of Miles 23 to about 53 of the bike course and since it is a loop this is also miles 67 through 97

Gunlock Reservoir

Just after the Veyo climb

Descending towards St George

IMSG Check-in and Athlete Dinner

It is starting to get very real now. Wednesday was a rest day and did some stretching to keep myself loose as well. Spent time at the pool teaching Gabby how to swim and then in the late morning the whole family went to the St George LDS Temple. It was quite peaceful and a good place to be before the race and stay calm and relaxed.

Aryana, Frances, Leah and I did check in registration late on Wednesday afternoon and still managed to get a free pair of Tyr swim goggles for being among the first 500 to check-in and also they did body marking early for anyone that wanted so I got that out of the way as well. I picked up some stuff I needed/wanted (compression socks, arm cooler sleeves and anti-fog spray for my goggles). I also picked up the Zipp 808 wheelset with the PowerTap Meter from Race Day Wheels so I can manage to the same wattage I have been training on the computrainer on. At the expo the three older kids made a pair of youtube greeting videos for Bernie and I.

For Richard

For Bernie

Got to bed a bit earlier and started shifting my body clock.

Thursday I got up at 5 am and had breakfast and later Frances and I did the run course video that I posted yesterday. Late morning all the kids came down to the expo and met with Bernie and I. They made the signs at the sign making station. Bernie got interviewed by Ironman Live. I picked up my last two needed pieces of equipment (anti eject water bottle cages and a xlab rear attachment for the CO2 cartridges that went missing. The kids did an updated video to include Gabby and Sierra

All Kids Video

After we got back everyone except me went to the outlet mall and I got the bike ready and numbered along with installing the new equipment and setting up the PowerTap display to the way I wanted.

Late afternoon I went for a test ride of 18km at mostly under IM heart rate pace with a tiny bit of tempo stints up Snow Canyon. No bottles ejected and everything seems solid. Arm coolers and compression socks also feel great. Tested the downhill speed with a bit of the cross winds. Everything seems race ready. Did a short 10 minute run off the bike, 5 minutes easy and 5 minutes at IM heart rate, looks good there as well.

Finished off the day by going to the IM welcome banquet/athletes meeting and Aryana wanted to come and I was glad to have her company. After we got back to the condo it was 9:00 and I was straight to bed for the very important two nights to go sleep.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Ironman St George Run Course Video Preview

Finished off Tuesday with an early evening run with Bernie, Leah, Frances and Aryana. I was kind of sluggish as we jogged along the middle part of the run route and through Pioneer Park but after we finished the 4 km jog I decided to run up the hill as if I was heading back towards transition and did it at Ironman effort and it felt GREAT so after the 1 km up beat was over shut it down and left the rest for race day.

The official run course route information is here but I have added my personal preview of the run course below.

First off the course is incredible in my opinion. A relatively steep incline just a block out of transition as you climb main street for two blocks and then a soft grade up Diagonal St for roughly 1.5 miles. Turning right it then gets steeper as you go up Bluff St and then quite steep up after your right turn on Red Hills Parkway before a long slightly rolling climb above town. Absolutely stunning view up on top.

You start descending at about 4.5 miles and then a short loop in a hilly Pioneer Park. This section concerns me the most because it undulates so frequently I think it may be hard to have any sort of rhythm. After exiting Pioneer you turn left for a little while downhill to the turnaround and then come back the same way you went out including Pioneer Park. As you descend down bluff you take a small loop near the golf course and then return the same way you left transition. Rinse and repeat for a complete second loop.

Here is a 4X speed view of the run course by car. My personal copy of the video was put to the song 3's and 7's but due to copyright you get the one without the soundtrack.

My personal training regime for this course I think will work fabulously as I would train on the following treadmill stats

1 mile at 2%
1 mile at 3%
0.5 miles at 3.5%
0.5 miles at 4%
0.5 miles at 4.5%
3 miles at 0.5%
1.5 miles at 3%
5 miles at 0.5%

Repeat for second loop. As a result I didn't get the advantage of the downhills and was training my body to run hills. Saturday we find out how well it works out for me.

Tomorrow I will post the bike course preview.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Triathlon Wetsuit and Booties

For most people getting on the triathlon wetsuit is a less than graceful art. At Ironman St George about 4 days before the race a couple of us went to Sand Hollow to get a test swim in. Due to my usual cold extremities and the 62F water temperature I opted to wear aqua sock thermal booties as well.

A short clip of getting on the wetsuit. Notice the use of my jeans to prevent getting too much junk on my feet as I donned the booties and wetsuit. I will comment that it is a LOT easier to get the wetsuit on with booties over bare feet.

Once the booties are on then you can start donning the wetsuit, starting with the lower legs. My preference is to get the lowest part of the wetsuit past the heel and then shimmy up the lower leg a bit, finally with reaching on the inside of the wetsuit and pulling it up from there.

Once I have got that done I then pull it up from side to side until the crotch of the wetsuit is as high as possible and then work on the upper part of the wetsuit. Unfortunately I don't have any video of the rest of the process.

Ironman St George T1 location

Following the swim in the Sand Hollow Reservoir the Ironman St George T1 transition zone is in a very large and quite nice parking lot. In addition to the standard port-a-potties a number of full structure bathrooms are around the parking lot which usually serves as part of the Sand Hollow State Park. The view from just up from the water for the athletes will look something like this, plus a couple of thousand bikes in bike racks.

As you view this video you will move to the right area to get to your bike and then shift left out to the bike course which opens on a downhill grade and gets you some good initial speed.

Official Ironman St George Transition T1 map located here

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Four Days to Race Date

After arriving in St. George mid afternoon on Monday we checked in to our place at the Green Valley Resort. Everyone was happy to leave the snow behind us finally and see this type of vegetation.

For the record, Melanie rocked this booking. Place is a very spacious three bedroom that has a massive living room area with a hide-a-bed and kitchen, dinning, sitting area to top it off.

From our second floor suite we have a decent view of the central courtyard area.

Didn't do a whole lot after arriving except meeting up with Bernie and a drive over the run course. I will do a run course preview later this week. Got to bed a bit earlier than the last few nights and then up at about 6:45 am and met up again with Bernie for breakfast and then went for a swim at Sand Hollow. I will do a separate blog post with my swim course preview. Nice easy 1km swim and then a 25km ride during the afternoon at a easy pace with a few pick-ups on some hills. Spending the rest of the afternoon relaxing.

Ironman St George Swim Course Preview (Video/Photos)

Greetings from a very sunny St. George UT, home of the 2011 Ironman St George course. The next three days I will be doing special course preview blog entries. Today's blog will cover the Ironman St George swim course. The official race website on the swim course is here but I will give a few extra comments and thoughts.

One of my daughters came out with Bernie and I the Tuesday before the race and got a couple of pictures as we started suiting up.

Before Wetsuit

After Wetsuit

First impressions of this swim course in person is the water is average in terms of clarity. Visibility is pretty good for a couple of body lengths but get much beyond that and it starts to get tougher to see the feet in front of you. The lake bottom is visible just beyond standing depth or at about standing depth so if you cant see the bottom, you cant stand on it for sure but if you can see bottom its a maybe about standing. The path down to the water was gravel but the actual entry to the water was mostly sandy with a few rocks to navigate.

The chit chat at water's edge was about temperature which according to Utah State Parks was a balmy 62 degree F last week. I still wore the booties AND the thermal cap. My fingers were cold for the first 5-10 minutes but head was fine and feet a bit cold throughout. With the expected hot temperatures for the next few days it will warm up more but I am hoping for it to be 64.8 degrees come race day and still booties allowed (has to be under 65 F for booties at this race) because my feet always get so cold (plus it will be nice for walking over the rocks).

Once we got swimming Leah snapped a couple of solid pictures of Bernie and I

Bernie "the Burninator"

Richard "aka Statman"

Water was extremely calm and minimal wind at the edge and could be ideal for some fast swim times, check out the draft wake in the calm water.

And finally, for the spectators, a preview of the basin this lake is in. It could be more scenic but it is not bad.

Leah also saw some lizards on the dam and captured a good close up.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Travel Days to St George

After traveling 14 hours south we still have not yet got rid of snow. Crazy for this time of year. Today we make the final 4.5 hr drive to St George proper after two days of travel. Last night we enjoyed the fine hospitality of Alex Wenzel and one of his sons staying at their place in Sandy, Utah.

Later today once we arrived in St George I plan to get in a workout of some sort. Bernie apparently arrived yesterday and did a 6 mile run on the course. I still have not yet caught up on a good sleep but my legs feel quite rested and the small itchy throat is finally gone this morning.

Aryana has been sick on the way down so I am somewhat concerned she is in a closed car traveling this long with me.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Packing and Gear Checklist for Ironman St George

Packing for Ironman should be an event. Two hours of sorting, organizing and packing everything up. My IM distance pool swim today in 61:45 (a new PB) seemed much easier by comparison.

Earlier in the week I did a wetsuit test swim with my new blue seventy booties and the thermal hoodie. The 2km swim was at Ironman intensity and I clocked a nice 30:40 which means I am definitely on track for a best time swim. Last night I did a 5km tempo run in 20:44 at above IM threshold just to get a bit of intensity in and then this morning a 20 minute water run.

Finally I am finished packing and can now rest and then get a good sleep before leaving to St George in the morning.

My Ironman Pack list

Bike Pump
Body Glide
Pre-race Food
Spare Bag
Old Shoes
Warm-Up Pants
Warm-up Shirt

Special Needs
Salt Tabs
Sweater (if Run)
Spare Shirt (if Run)

Swim cap
Wetsuit Booties
Wetsuit Hood/Beanie
Race Chip
HR Monitor Strap

Bike Helmet
Bike Shoes
Bike Short
Bike Shirt
Race Belt and Number
Water Bottles
Emergency Glasses
Tire Levers
CO2 cartridges / Bike Pump
Spare Tubes

Extra Socks
Running Shoes
Long Sleeve
Salt Tabs

Monday, April 25, 2011

12 days of taper to Ironman St George

Decided to use the Dave Scott taper program for this last two weeks before the race. Saturday I did the Run-Bike-Run (5km-43.5km-5km) in 23.5 minutes, 78 minutes, 24 minutes at just a little bit over Ironman Heart Rate Race Pace. Sunday as my usual rest day and then did my longest ride between now and race date today (a 131 average bpm ride on a hilly course). Was very militant about staying in profile position during the hills and wind and it paid off with a solid 1h 45m ride for 60km.

Friday, April 22, 2011

15 days to race date, taper started

Two weeks to race day as of tomorrow, so what's been happening.

First off, my last heavy week ended up lighter than planned mostly because by mid-week I was thrashed. Legs heavy, congestion etc so after the heavy Monday, and an intense Tuesday of a week and a half ago I just did a swim on the Wednesday. Still feeling fatigued I took Thursday and Friday off and then a HARD workout with Bernie on Saturday. Was not quite back into full health and despite drinking and fueling well the 2h 30m bike at 227 watts followed by 12 mile run and a 30 minute swim left me almost 6 lbs lighter than I started the workout.

Took the usual Sunday off, then shorter but intense workouts this last Monday, hard swim Tuesday and then got sick and missed work on Wednesday and took Thursday off working out as well to recover. Will do something today of moderate intensity as well as something tomorrow to wrap up week 1 of 3 in the taper.

Worried about the swim temperature as the lake is apparently still at 52-55 degrees F. Ouch. Not good for me.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Ironman St George bike profile and a MONSTER brick run

First off I need to give a great "shout out" and kudos to my best friend Bernie for his age category win at the Texas Half-Ironman (70.3) and his qualification to the world championships in Las Vegas for that distance. He won in a 1/4 mile sprint to the finish by 2 seconds.

While Bernie was doing that this last weekend, I was doing my monster brick session with a 6 hour ride followed by a 26 km run off the bike. Averaged a very strong 4:56 /km while at the Ironman heart rate of 136 bpm. Worked out the nutrition on the run and managed to down about 100 calories every 15 minutes with water when I could find some on my run route (about every 30 minutes or so).

Took Sunday off workouts as my rest day while I attended to other responsibilities. Monday was another huge ride for 6h 18min followed by a very short 1 km run to see how my legs and knees were holding out. I was happy with how that went. Today I tested my nutrition plan on the bike. Water and 100 calories every 15 minutes. In the early stages I was not working hard enough and because I wasn't sweating enough and needed to take a few more bathroom breaks than planned. Other than that it worked perfectly.

Over the next while I want to start really calculating the right heart rate efforts on the simulated IMSG bike course along with pace planning at the wattage that I need.

Profile of IMSG Bike Course

Friday, April 8, 2011

How a friend helps you swim harder, train harder

Most of this week has been pretty easy to manage the fatigue but I was / am quite tired today. Thursday was a hard workout day, moderate to hard intensity water run, then bike intervals followed immediately with a brick 5 km run. The bike intervals were a set of the 4 X 20 min efforts (231, 245, 241, 252 average watts in that order). The run went very very well as I averaged 4:48/km at 137 average bpm, which was much better than Tuesday. I would definitely take that pace / Heart rate at Ironman.

For my easy Friday workout it was a water run (easier), harder swim and easy spin on the bike. The swim was a tough session as I still felt fatigue in the arms from Wednesday's long effort. Thankfully Shannon of was at the pool at the same time. I did a 500m technical warm up and then into a hard main set of 3 X 7 X 100m on a 1:45 cycle with 2 minutes between sets. Overall average of about 1:29 or 1:30. Shannon swam the middle 7 and first 4 of my final set in the lane beside me and as a result I had a few 1:25-1:26 100m intervals in that one. Thanks Shannon for helping me out on a tough swim. I'm heading into Saturday with 16 hours already so should be on track to get 23-24 hours for this middle week.

Many of you have seen this video but it represents my mindset when it comes to this last 21 day training block of which 8 training days are left.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Halfway through final training block

No video today as I blog from the bike machine in the gym at work and can't find and embed them very easily on the ipad while spinning. Week two continues well with a water run yesterday morning, a lunch 3000m swim in 51 min, and an evening brick session outside. Wind was really strong (outbound section of 11 km took 31 minutes and return took 15 minutes) and as this was first outdoor ride since October and still up to 6 inches of snow on the ground so I stuck to a good highway that was well cleared for a 44 km ride followed by a 5 km run right off the bike. Ran it at an average 138 bpm and clocked just under 5 min / km.

Today was an easier day with a 4500 m pull buoy and paddle swim in 70 min followed by this easy bike on gym bike for 76 min. Did a bunch of work emails tonight on the bike as well as got ready for some duties at Church.

10 days of heavy training to go.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Ironman St George course walkthrough video and new run workout

Celebrated the start of the 2nd last hard week with an easy 3000m swim in 61 minutes and then straight into a 2 hr hard run, both right after work.

Tonight's workout was intended to get me ready for this very tough run course. Check out the video here describing the Ironman St. George Course.

The hard run was a modified version of something my good friend Bernie did a couple of weeks back mixed with my usual mile repeats. After seeing that promo video I knew I needed to work more hill efforts in over these next two weeks. The workout was

1 mile warm-up

10 X 1 mile repeat on a 10 min cycle with 3 minute walk breaks at 3.0mph between
Elevation was 2.0% for the first four mile intervals, then 2 @ 2.5%, 2 @ 3%, 2 @ 3.5%
Pace was alternating between 7:03 per mile and 6:58 per mile, final mile at 6:55 up 3.5%

1 mile cool-down

Knee held up well, heart rate dropped to under 110 between each set, max heart rate on last interval was 170 bpm

Sunday, April 3, 2011

IMSG promo video and Ventricular Hypertrophy and T-wave inversion in Ironman Athelete

First off I want to share the results of my wild goose chase on cardiac anomalies Friday's run was the cardiac stress test that I was scheduled for. The T-wave inversion that worried the Dr.s on my EKG resolved to a normal shape and orientation after about 5 minutes of my "run". I think proceeded to get up to 20% grade and 5.5 mph on the Bruce protocol before I hit 150 bpm and they decided to not bother trying to get me to maximum, apparently very few even get close to where I was on the stress test and they said that was good enough to convince them that there was no issue with my heart under stress. My competitive instincts wanted to keep going :)They then did the nuclear medicine images afterwards and I go back Monday morning for the rest images and then finally this coming Thursday they will do the echo cardiogram. However, they gave me green light to push as hard as I would like in training.

Here are a few articles that relate to my type of situation
Soccer player with EKG abnormalities
Why ECG is not a good screening tool
Athletes Heart

So basically I fit the criteria and observations but they will proceed to complete the tests to make sure its truly athlete's heart not a cardiomyopathy. Now as for my last few days of training concluded with me 1/3 of the way through my last push towards Ironman St. George and I am very happy with how this last week finished off. Thursday got in another water run plus 2:10 ride, Friday was a swim, bike and the "run". Saturday I did intervals sessions mixed in with listening to General Conference on the laptop.

Good thing I have a computrainer. This was a friends picture of Calgary on April 2.
Did my warm-up followed by 4 X 20 minutes at high wattage (232, 240, 232 and 242) with 5-7 min breaks in between. It was a lot harder to go 20 minutes than the 15 minutes from last time. Next time I want to get to 5 X 20. In order to get my full training in for the day I did another 2:45 of moderate spinning (~29 km/hr) to finish the day at 5h 5 minutes workouts. This got the week total to 20.7 hours.

Goal for next week is to get to 23 hours as well as some good intensity workouts. For those interested here is an Ironman St George promotional video.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Committment captured on video

As Frances and Melanie head to Yakima, WA today in preparation for the marathon on Saturday I decided to post today with this video I saw on a friends Facebook update. I can only say I hope I can have this level of commitment.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A 30 year odyssey to Kona

How time passes...

It was about 258 or so days ago when I started this real attempt at my quest for Kona. Sure I had talked and planned about this since I was about 13 or 14 years old when triathlon was a brand new thing. I'm not sure if it was a 1981 ABC sports special or the fact I was in Hawaii just after Ironman moved to Kona or the fact my grandparents showed me how the course went in front of their condo on Alii Dr. Either way a dream began. In 1983 I convinced my grade 10 Phys Ed teacher to have a school triathlon, she organized it and I won my debut race which was 800m swim, 17 km bike and 5 km run. She quit teaching the next year and went pro as a triathlete and I switched schools.

Afterwards I got more involved doing a winter tri the next year consisting of xc skiing, skating and running in Banff and in my new school convinced them to have a tri in my grade 12 year, which I also won. After that over the next 24 years to now I did Ironman Canada in 1989, and 4 more Ironmans, and many Half-IM and Olympic and sprint tris later here I am.

It's not that I haven't trained, but never this hard. My previous 20 triathlons never saw me really be consistent. I've either skipped multiple whole years from racing or just plodded along doing Ironman on less than 6 hours a week average training.

So this journey starts to come full circle as the passion I now have burns as fiercely as it did 30 years ago. Over the last 258 days I've focused all on a few basic principles.

1. Build a base worthy of a real attempt to get to worlds.
2. Strengthen my body so I can put in the absolute strongest 21 day peak cycle I've ever done in my life.
3. Develop power on the bike that changes my bike from a weakness to a strength.
4. Learn to run fatigued so I can run an Ironman without walk breaks.

In a mere 39 days Ironman St. George will be history. The last 258 are what they are, and the next 18 days of hard work and 21 days of taper is all the is left in my control. No regrets over the last 7 months. I lost less than 5 training days due to illness and skipped less than 7 days without a rationale reason to not train. Every other day was intentional and planned.

It would be easy to change my goal to just having a best time. I've earned that but there needs to be no mental doubt going to St. George. I'm going there to get a world champs qualifying spot. I need to be strategic and focused and use every tool and technique at my disposal to finish this journey.

So what was the last week like? I took four days off from Thursday to Sunday to recover from the months of effort and to prepare for the final stretch. Monday I was eager to resume, the energy and focus and my knee felt great for the first time in months, perhaps since September. I started the 21 day load with an easy spin at lunch for 30 minutes with a 10 min cardio core rotation of 100 crunches, 25 tricep dips and 40 pushups. Then after work was the second last long run I will do until the race. I ran 23 miles knee pain free at 140 average heart rate and did 8 min mile pace over my mock St George course plus 0.5%. That was so awesome to see my knee hold out. I ran it in my tri suit to ensure I could be comfortable enough to run in it at the race for that long. Then on Tuesday night I did a moderate 3 hour ride focusing the last hour on impeccable profile position. I need to make sure now I am riding technically clean so it's all habit race day. Today was a split day with early morning water run, lunch swim ( did a solid 20 x 50 m set averaging 41 secs on a 1 minute cycle) and a post work spin and blogging session.

Goal is to get 21 hours this week.

So in a nutshell the first 3 days of the key 21 are solid and on May 7 at dinner I will celebrate with some chocolate ice cream my Kona qualification.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

45 days, another IM swim PB and EKG anomalies for athletes

As time gets closer to the race more obstacles keep on showing up, or at the very least, distractions. Did a EKG screening way back in November and some anomalies showed up so another EKG screening in march and either I have athletes / runners heart or an impending MI or heart attack. My GP and I both think the former but protocol is to screen for the latter so referral to cardiology clinic and echo cardiogram are now both scheduled.

At this rate they may give me a kona spot as a human interest story before I even run IMSG as a qualifier. I'm stacking up stories faster than miles logged it seems. So Monday when they made the referral and I got the Dr office calling I confirmed with the GP that I'm good to continue training and she said yes and this will likely end up a wild goose chase. I can't wait to be referred to do a treadmill stress test. You can see it now, Sir please tell us when you feel near your limit. Hopefully the test treadmill can go above 10 mph.

So after taking the extra day off on Monday I celebrated my failing body (sarcasm intended) with an ironman swim at lunch in a personal best 63:10 and felt really controlled with splits consistent between 8:15 and 8:20 per 500m all the way through. A 30 min water run at mod rate intensity after work and a 2 hr indoor trainer ride at 175 watts resistance to finish the day. Wednesday was a 45 min water run at lunch, blogging and work emails after work on the reclined bike for 75 min and an intended ride for an hour later tonight.

Did some more research and found 3 really good options for my taper that I am choosing from and decided to go 20 hrs this week, next week a rest week with 2 hard weeks after that before the three week taper.

Weeks ago I posted no excuses, no regrets. Holding to that cause.

WTC here I come!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Under 50 days to IMSG and How much to push in this final build cycle?

Last week was very busy at work as expected but I did get in a decent interval session on Thursday running 10 X 1 mile repeats averaging 6:45 overall per mile. Saturday was a massive brick run doing a 6 hour ride followed by a 19.5km run at about 5:20/km averaging under 140 HR. Both of these I feel were good solid workouts. Finished the week at just over 19 hours.

For the first time in my life I am finding it hard to be willing to schedule in a rest week. Race is 7 weeks away and I am planning a three week taper. I have two more long runs to build on in the next 4 weeks (36.5 and 39 km) but I have met the target for a long brick and have done three 5h 20m plus rides. So the real test now is to properly plan this last 4 week cycle before the taper.

The last 7 weeks have been a scale up order (13.7, 12.4, 15.3, 13.1, 18.4, 16.1, 19.2 hours respectively). I am thinking I should drop down to 16-17 hours this week, 21 the week after, then 16-17, then 24ish and then taper. I am also really watching my knee as well. After all these years of self coaching I need some seasoned advice going down the stretch. Usually I don't have this much base at this stage. Time to call a friend.

Monday, March 14, 2011

No substitute for work, great need for motivation, great example of a first time marathoners preparation and a video

After a hard run last Thursday I did an easy 70 minutes bike ride on Friday, working out soreness and all, and to recover the knee. I had hoped to do a long brick Saturday but knee was still very tender so I decided a long base bike ride on the computrainer would have to do. So after getting back from my Saturday morning dental appointment I did a six hour ride at easy effort. Sunday rest day. Monday morning 35 minute up tempo water run and a moderate steady state ride indoor bike late Monday night of a couple hours.

Still crazy busy at work and will be for at least two more days but hopefully will hit my goal of 20 hrs this week. However, no long run of 20+ miles this week. Frances and Melanie both starting to taper down for the Yakima marathon in just under 3 weeks. I wish my leg was solid enough to go with them but need to keep it rested for IMSG. It will be Frances' first full and I think she is ready with a peak 41km long run, a 13 X 1 mile long intervals session with 3 min rest between each and a 92km total in her max week. Way more than I did for my first.

Aryana is training hard for her 1st half marathon also, its in Ontario in late April. See her blog here >> Wear Sunscreen

Finally, the video clip of the day for triathlon motivation

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Wall revisted, great long run and cool video

Last Saturday I ended up not only doing a 5h 20m bike (albeit at an easy pace) but I decided to run off the bike outside. It was cold, and it was my first hard surface and outdoor run since we got back from Hawaii in early December. Three layers on my legs, three on torso, double gloves and a warm toque. Ran it averaging about 8:15 per mile and was happy with that off the bike.

Took the Sunday rest day and then decided to make my bike ride a Richard vs the Wall round 5 or 6. It had been months (mid November) since I had done a time trial on the IMSG computrainer course. Got all my food ready, drink ready and mentally prepped for a hard workout. End result was I was absolutely ecstatic probably riding faster than ever in my life averaging 32 km/hr over a hilly 108 km course (over 3000 ft climbing) and a big increase 212 average watts compared to the 186 watts back in November. Did an easy water run as well on Monday. Tuesday was a busy work day and only got in a 84 minute ride and Wednesday was even busier at work and then at church so ended up not getting in a workout.

The URD (unscheduled rest day) was put to good use as I did a long run today. The last two long runs were less than stellar so I took lots of energy bars, plus 3 bottles Gatorade and ran 34 km of the IMSG run course on the treadmill plus an extra 0.5 % grade throughout for good measure. Ended up running 2:55 for the 34 km which is about 8:15 per mile pace and was much happier with that over the previous weeks. Last 30 minutes were tough but I just promised myself that if I did the full 34 km at pace I would give myself a rest week next week from a long run. So between mental chanting of "K O N A" and "earn the rest" and "train like Kona depends on this effort, because it does" I pushed my way through the final stages of the workout.

Tonight when I decided to blog I skimmed through the updates from friends on Facebook and found this video below. Makes my piddly Ironman effort seem, well, piddly.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Making Ironman training fit into the available time

The value of time. I wish that I had more in a few ways.

First, more days in a week. I like my job, and really don't mind doing it, I just wish I had an 8th day of the week in the middle for a longer training day. That would be really useful.

Second, more hours in a day. I would love to get more sleep and have an extra 30 minutes from when I drop off Leah to seminary and when my work day starts. It would help me get in that morning workout without being as rushed, and 15 more minutes at lunch for the same reason.

Third, more weeks before IMSG maybe just 4 or 5 so I could get some outdoor rides in. It's march and not even close to riding outside with ice, snow and -15 C temps, thank goodness I have a computrainer.

However, none of those things are going to happen so I need to maximize the time I do have. Like right now, riding an easy long ride and blogging at the same time not only dulls some of the monotony but allows me to take care of multiple things. Awesome having the wireless keyboard and mouse, although the keyboard occasionally flakes out.

Busy life tasks at the start of this last week got me off to a slow start. After Mondays easy spin I got in a second easy spin on the bike on Tuesday for just over an hour and a half. Really making sure I get the time on the bike in. It wasn't that easy though as I did a set of single leg drills that I sure felt on Wednesday. Wednesday was a water run and swim. Did the warm up and cool down with a main swim set of 6 x 100 x 3 for 1800m averaging 1:27 on a 1:45 min cycle with 2 minutes between each subset of 6. I was pleased with that. Thursday was long run day, and again it was tougher than I wanted. Only got in 17.5 miles at 8:30 pace on the IMSG course. the knee was wonky at the start but settled down and heart rate stayed reasonably solid but legs were generally fatigued.

Is it just the fact I am in a heavy volume block or am I over traing? Who knows but I did three workouts Friday with them being an easy bike (85 minutes), easy water run (40 minutes) and moderate swim (3200m steady with pull buoy and paddles in 51 minutes). That went pretty good for the day after a long run.

This morning I decided to switch my 4 hr hard ride with an easy 5 hr ride and take advantage of tomorrows Sunday rest day to ride hard on Monday. Just over 90 minutes into the long ride now. Should finish the week at about 17 hours.

After I finish the blog I will read a pile of emails I have to catch up on. 9 weeks to race day as of today.

Monday, February 28, 2011

68 days...

68 days to go...

Last week it was either a bug that has been going around or just a touch of over doing it but after my monster Mon and Tues i took an USD - unscheduled rest day - and it was well worth it. Thursday I did a swim and long run (20 miles) and found the run really hard, heart rate was great but muscles were really sore afterwards so Friday was just a swim day. Took both sat and sun off and just did an easy spin for two hours tonight.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

74 days left to have no excuses - go hard on hard days!

Less than 11 weeks to go to Race Date

Finished off last week with my first real test on my knee running mile repeats on Friday night after work. Decided to take them more cautiously at first with a easy 1 mile warm up and then a relatively controlled opening mile repeat on 6:58, knee felt great so I picked up by .1 mph on the treadmill, ended up doing a solid 8 mile repeat set and finished the last repeat at about 6:27. Saturday I got in a reasonable tempo bike ride at 197 watts for 2 hours.

This week started even better than last week finished with an easy long ride on the holiday Monday of 5 hours 10 minutes at 140 watts. Today (Tuesday) was short intervals of 5 X 1km averaging 3:48 (plus a warm up), a strong swim of 5 X 500m averaging 7:57 and then the best long bike intervals that I have ever had with a 3o minute warm up and 5 X 15 minutes (228 watts, 228, 234, 242 and the last at 259 watts) and cool down.

I am grateful that I have been blessed with sufficient health. My key focus now is to remove any excuses that could get in my way of hard workouts.

Some people have commented this goes a little extreme but the intent should be to do all you can to remove the excuses. For example - Go to bed earlier!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Survived knee injection for the osteoarthritis treatment

With just over 11 weeks to go my focus continues to shift to more intensity and power, especially on the bike. But before getting into that I should talk about the Duraline shot (sp) I got on monday. In addition to the Glucosamine I made the decision to get the knee injection to help with the cartilege pain and damage. Pretty simple process, some freezing first, then the deeper injection to the lateral side of the knee. I was able to bike later that day but it did feel a bit tight in the evening and didn't sleep overly well that evening.

Doctor said to wait 2 to 3 days before impact training I.e. Running and so Tuesday was a water run, swim and some bike intervals. Wednesday was also water run, swim and bike but easier effort as it is my mid week active rest day. Today, thursday was a morning easy run on the treadmill (30 minutes - 6 km) and then a linger bike with some intervals in the middle of an easy warm up and cool down while I blog on the iPad.

Overall the first four days of the week I an tracking to about 11 hours and should get close to 20 health and fatigue permitting. Best workouts this week include a 2 km time trial swim in 32:13, a bike interval set that included a 4 x 3:45 set with 2:30 rest averaging 293 watts and a swim with two string 500m pull sets averaging 7:20 or less.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

No, I am NOT having a baby, that's just my pain threshold

12 weeks to go as of yesterday.

Another 12+ hour workout week completed last week with eight easy and three intense anchor workouts (my bike tempo on Monday, a long run Tuesday and a hard double bike interval on Friday night - 30 minute warm up followed by 2 X 16 minutes at 240 then 253 watts average and a 15 minute cool down)

As I start to work harder on my intensity I am finding it more key to recover. I had planned to get in workouts on Saturday but between family and church responsibilities plus a trip to the dentist for a cleaning in the morning I just didn't have enough will power to work out, especially after the very intense session on Friday night.

This week my focus again will be at least 2-3 core anchor workouts on the bike and a reasonable run workout - might even try an interval session. The Glucosamine tablets seem to be helping along with the reduce running on terra firma - I did three water runs this week.

However, at the end of the day I must get the bike power up. Friday night I guess I was making so much noise during my interval that my 12 year old daughter came in to the work out room and asked if I was having a baby - I had no idea I had been so loud but I was just pushing my quads to use the highest gear I could and still maintain over 85 rpm. Apparently my pain threshold triggered a bit of heavy breathing and noise. And for the record for those who read but didn't know - I am a guy.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Fitting in ironman training to rest of life

6 Days in May
30 days in Apr
31 days in Mar
18 days in Feb

That's all that's left. 85 days and it doesn't seem like enough. 35 minute morning water run sure felt great after last night's long run. Nice steady state 50 min swim at lunch (500m warm up, 500m kick, 3x500 pull on 9:45 cycle averaging 7:33 plus 100 m cool down) was nice and an evening spin on the bike very easy effort while I blog and answer emails on the ipad.

Focus today is get loose for a hard bike interval session tomorrow night. Watching weight as I lost too much water on last nights run. Despite 2 full water bottles I was down to 149lbs and had some circulation issues post run. So today am refueling. As time gets tighter I continue to look for ways to double up activities. I am sure people at the gym think I an nuts working away on iPad while riding but just only so many hours in a day and I really need 8 plus hrs sleep a night.

Especially since I have other things to do after the workout with kids and church responsibilities.

Nothing Left on the Table - No Regret Plan

The last two training days I realized that I plan to leave no regrets, no thoughts about could I have done more, trained better. Every hard day I plan to train hard. In other words treat every hard day as if the effort is a direct correlation to a Kona qualification attempt.

On the converse I plan to make sure that I don't over train and that every easy day is just that - EASY, that I have enough recovery time and that there are no excuses for being too tired or too beat up. That the recovery and easy days are critical for building.

So Monday was a solid swim, an easy water run and a hard bike effort with a long warm up and cool down sandwiching an intense 217 watt 35 KM tempo in the middle. Tuesday was a high effort long run on the treadmill where the knee held up great. Got in 20 miles in 2h38m.

And now for Wednesday its a recovery day with three very easy workouts to loosen up, stretch and recover.

Leave no regrets and no effort on the table with empty wishes. Regardless of outcome I plan to stay on focus for the next three months with a discipline that I will be happy with.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

3 Months to Go and still focused

Ok, its been a while since I posted. I have been training over 10-18 hours per week despite the usual busy back to work and budget season and its been relatively tough to juggle but have not been overly consistent blogging.

I could blame it on the news about the arthritis, or work in general but its simply been lack of sleep and distractions. However, its time to take advantage of the easy month of January (57 hours total) and regroup for a serious build phase.

Some key workouts that I accomplished during January include a pair of serious bike interval sessions (4 X 15 minutes at 220 - 240 watts with 5 min breaks), and a couple of long bikes, some decent swim workouts (10 X 100 at 1:45 cycle averaging 1:27) and a solid 200m (2:45) and 1km time trial (15:16) and a couple of good long runs on the treadmill (28.5 and 31.5km)

So for a month where I felt that it wasn't spectacular it was still better than what I used to do 6 months ago.

Tomorrow represents three months to Ironman St George. Since my knee probably won't allow another season like this I need to make it count. I am taking some Glucosamine (sp) and its early to tell but it might be helping.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

First Cholesterol Scare, Now Arthritis Reality

Day 176 (Sunday) rest day
Day 177 (Monday) 20 min swim 800m, 136 minute run - 26.5km
Day 178 (Tuesday) 37 min swim 2000m
Day 179 (Wed) 90 minute bike 40km
Day 180 (Thurs) 50 min swim - 2500m, 155 min bike - 73km, 40 min run (water)
Day 181 (Fri) 55 min swim - 3000m, 120 min bike - 55km

Day 182 and 183 Off

Well, I've delayed this post long enough. Whether it's laziness or a subconscious refusal to post the results of the specialist appointment from Monday.

Doctor confirmed that I have osteo arthritis in my right knee and that while it doesn't prevent me from continuing on this years focus it does mean I still will need to rest it lots and manage the issue with the caveat / advice I consider reducing my running and impact to my knee substantially.

Now that that is off my chest I can focus on this next weeks workouts having finished last week at about 12 hours (when I include a weights session)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

First full week of 2011 a good one

Day 172 (Wed) Bike 47 minutes - 23km, Run 55 minutes - 10km
Day 173 (Thurs) Swim 52 minutes - 2800m, Bike 220 minutes - 66km
Day 174 (Fri) Run 54 minutes - 11km
Day 175 (Sat) Bike 165 minutes - 77km

Finished off the first week of 2011 better than any other first week in my training career. While I did less volume (17h 45m) than I have been doing over the last month it was a good week.

Recently I have been a bit worried about the swim not coming along but the Thursday swim workout went awesome (500kick warm up and 500m kick cool-down with (6 X 100) X 3 with 15 secs between 100s and 45 seconds between the sets) By far my strongest repeat 100m swim workout when it comes to endurance. Average by set was 1:28, 1:28 and 1:27. Last two 100s in 1:26 and 1:25.

Also pleased with the 11km run on the St George profile (+.5% extra incline) at a good pace and controlled effort.

Spent some time playing games with the kids and also backed off a bit at the second half of the week due to fatigue and some lack of sleep. With today's usual Sunday rest day I am ready to put in a pretty good week next week - ideally around the 20-22 hour range.

Also it's time to start developing some power in the legs for the bike.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Another large base building day

Day 171 Swim 75 minutes - 4050m, Bike 190 minutes - 90km

Today fatigue really set in and I need to make sure tomorrow is very much a recovery day. Happy with the volume of the workout but effort level was far higher than it should have been for the pace. Also focusing on getting a good sleep.

Swim workout was

500m warm-up
500m Kick with fins
5 X 300m on a 5' cycle averaging 4:32 using pull buoy and paddles
500m Kick with fins
21 X 50m on 1' cycle descending speed to 40s before fail

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Calculation of ideal HR in an IM marathon

Day 170 Swim 76 minutes - 4.2km, Bike 90 minutes - 40km, Run 121 minutes - 22.5km

Registered for a training peaks account to see what their plans and stats are like in a training plan. Monday was my second last day before retuning to work from the holidays so I took advantage of the full day to get in a good set of workouts.

Nothing super special but I was most happy with my run since it was on the IMSG profile + .5% extra incline throughout. Run was planned as a zone 2 run which for me should be between 120 and 130ish Heart Rate - aka easy enough to pass the talk test throughout. Therefore the speed was slower than usual at an average of 8:40s per mile almost but I also averaged 121 bpm.

Based on some research I've done with my max HR of 177 and resting of 42 I should be running IM marathon at 135 to 145 HR. I figure that if I do that I should be able to average just under 8' per mile on the SG course - right on target for my 3:30 pace for the run.

The methods I used was to take LT threshold for running and subtract 20-30 bpm, as well as checked with a method that says take 180 - age for target and a third method that says take 82% to 88% of the LT bpm. All three methods hit about the same AND seem to match what I have had from experience. When I have run over 145 bpm at Ironman I get in to trouble so good fit there.

Tuesday plan a swim and long bike.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 in review - 7 career records

Day 167 (Friday)

Decided to take an extra rest day and enjoy New Year's Eve and time with the kids

Day 168 (Saturday) Bike 180 minutes, 85km

Did a base building three hour ride and then enjoyed preparing for and having family over for new year's. Games, fun, meal and visiting.

Day 169 (Sunday) Rest day!

Finally the report up on the finish to 2010.

Highlights of 2010

1) Most weeks run in a year in my career (51 of 52)
2) Most minutes run/walked in a two week stint ever (992 minutes)
3) Highest average swim distance per workout ever (2040 minutes)
4) Highest swim distance in a single month ever (49.7 km)
5) Highest bike distance in a single month ever (1083 km)
6) Highest total hours in a single month ever (86.9 hrs)
7) Highest total hours in a single year ever (391 hours)

What is more impressive is that 5 of those 7 highlights occurred in the month of December. Great start for me to move into January with.

Happy New Year!