Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Race Preview: MinneMan Sprint Triathlon

Date: Saturday, July 3
Location: Lake George Regional Park, Oak Grove, MN

Last year, it was this race that finally solved the answer of my swim anxiety moment that I had been dealing with during the 2009 season. Thinking it was the constricting feel of my wet suit, I went into MinneMan with the goal of racing just in my DeSoto speed suit. 100-yards out into the swim...BAM!...the shortness of breath and anxiety hit like a ton of bricks. It was the speedsuit that was too tight across the chest.

I held onto a lifeguards float for a few minutes to compose myself and eventually finished the swim and the triathlon....but my time and placement suffered greatly. Thus, I put this event back on my map for 2010 so I can see what I can really do in what will again be a very stacked 45-49 age group category.

This event is a 0.3 Mile Swim, 13 Mile Bike, 3 Mile Run. My goals:

Swim: 09:14
T1: 2:35 (it is a super long transition from water to bike)
Bike: 35:27 (22.0 MPH). I recall I didn't care for the residential feel of the bike course
T2: 1:30
Run: 20:15 (6:45 per mile pace)
Total: 01:09:01

I'm just starting to run again as my left lower calf/upper Achilles acute injury seems to have transitioned into acute shin splints. It's pure pain right now. As I'll be one weekend out from Cornman....my A-Race for 2010...it will be crucial that I leave MinneMan confident of my running ability and without injury. I still may opt of of MinneMan if I don't think I can run without pain. I need to be ready for Cornman, which is the Midwest Special Qualifier for the USAT Age Group National Championship.

In the News

For those offroad people who were wondering about the XTERRA Pipestem Creek event that I had to pass on, read pro Erin Kummer's race report.

And for those who may have missed it, the Minneapolis Star Tribune recently ran a story on me as part of their "How I Got This Body" series.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Another Fine Product From Montana

We all know about Hammer Nutrition and their fine line of products that help triathletes keep their mojo. There is another line of products from Montana that I have used for over a decade that I wanted to share with you as well. The product is Porter's Lotion which is made in Bozeman.



If you shower multiple times during the day because we are, afterall, multi-talented athletes specializing in three disciplines you need something to restore moisture to dry skin. Especially during the cold, dark & dry months of winter.

I use Original Porter's Hand and Body Lotion which comes in 8.45 ounce bottle. It is a grease free dry skin tonic that combines the restorative and healing properties of Rosemary, Camphor, Witch Hazel, and Green soap. It combats the elements and helps heal cracked, dry and peeling skin. It has a "cooling" effect on the skin and a distinct scent that disappears upon evaporation. Intelligently packaged in an unbreakable bottle and like all of their products, it is not tested on animals.

At first you will think it is not lotion as it has the basic consistency of water. However I think you will come to love this product as much as I do. If nothing else, get it for your poor feet. This product will repair cracked heels. It moisturizes skin from too much chlorine from swimming pools. I keep it in the shower and just apply after toweling off.


At one time, I would need to contact my brother-in-law who lives in Missoula to venture out and buy a case and ship it to me. That was the only way I could get my hands on the stuff. Jump ahead fifeteen years and you can buy direct from Porters or even pick it up from Amazon.

It has an interesting story. The precursor to Porter's Original Lotion began in Montana in 1915 with Dr. C. E. Whitehead who compounded a similar formula with camphor, alcohol, glycerin, ammonia and water to be used for workers at a local cement plant to treat dry skin. He passed his formula on to Heber Porter, a Bozeman pharmacist, who started Porter's Pharmacy in the newly constructed Baxter Hotel in 1931. He began to compound the original formula for Porter's Lotion, as we know it today. Although Heber Porter died in 1955, the same lotion continued to be compounded in a barrel in various local Bozeman pharmacies until 1994, when the Bungalow Drug, the last to make it, was closing its doors.

Fearing an end of the Porter's era, Michael Anderson, a fourth generation Porter's user, and Con and Daphne Gillam of Bozeman purchased the rights and formula to Porter's Lotion, started Gallatin River Products, and took Porter's nationwide and to four continents. So the product stayed alive.
 
Let me know what you think if you try it. I'm pretty sure you will give it two thumbs up.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Time For Slaw


Summer is the time for slaw. Here's a couple of great recipes to help you cook up some slaw with zing and use as an accompaniment.

Creamy Lime Slaw

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Yield: Serves 8



 
Ingredients: 
  • 4 green onions
  • 1/2 head cabbage, sliced thinly
  • 1/2 head red cabbage, sliced thinly
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves
  • 2 limes
  • 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

 
Preparation:

 
1. Slice green onions long and on the bias so you have pieces similar in shape to the cabbage. Toss together onions, cabbages, and cilantro in a large bowl.
2. Zest both limes and juice 1 lime. In a bowl, mix lime zest and juice, yogurt, sugar, salt, and pepper. Pour dressing over cabbage mixture; stir to combine.

Note: Nutritional analysis is per 1-cup serving.

 
Nutritional Information:

 
Calories: 49 (2% from fat)
Protein: 2.9g
Fat: 0.1g (sat 0.0)
Carbohydrate: 9.5g
Fiber: 2.2g
Sodium: 268mg
Cholesterol: 0.0mg

Fish Tacos with Creamy Lime Guacamole and Cabbage Slaw

Ingredients:
  • 2 avocados—halved, pitted and peeled
  • 1/4 cup low-fat sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • 1 small jalapeño, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons minced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 5 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 small head of cabbage, shredded (4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for brushing
  • 2 pounds thick red snapper fillets with skin, cut crosswise into ten 2-inch-wide strips
  • Ten 7-inch flour tortillas, warmed
  • 2 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • Hot sauce, for serving
  • Lime wedges, for serving
Directions:


1. Light a grill. In a medium bowl, mash the avocados, sour cream, jalapeño, red onion, cilantro and 3 tablespoons of the lime juice. Season the guacamole with salt and pepper and press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the guacamole.
2. In a large bowl, toss the cabbage with the 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil and the remaining 2 tablespoons of lime juice. Season with salt and pepper. Note - or use the creamy line slaw from earlier recipe.
3. Brush the fish with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderately high heat until lightly charred and cooked through, about 10 minutes. Transfer the fish to a platter and pull off the skin.
4. To assemble each taco, spread a dollop of guacamole on a tortilla. Top with a piece of fish, a few tomato slices and a large spoonful of the cabbage slaw. Serve with the hot sauce and lime wedges.
 
 

Monday, June 21, 2010

Race Result: Bismarck Sprint Triathlon

Event: Bismarck Triathlon (Sprint and Oly)
Date: Sunday, June 20
Location: Bismarck, North Dakota
Results: Sprint Results, Oly Results

Personal results

Goal: 1:06
Actual: 1:07:05
Overall: 3rd (60 total); top 5%
Overall Male Age Group (40-49): 1st (6 total)

The Recap

Up front, I should have won this race. That is not to take away from the very good performances of those who finished in front of me. It is a simple statement that had I hit my goals, I win...period. So many valuable seconds vanished here and there and those valuable seconds add up, don't they?

The 2010 Bismarck Triathlon version was two events. A Sprint Distance: 500 m swim, 20 k bike, 5 k run. And a Olympic Distance: 1500 m swim, 40 k bike, 10 k run. It all took place on the big horizon prairie sky at Misty Waters Marina, 4 miles north of Bismarck. The swim took place in the bay of Misty Waters Marina which is right off the Missouri River.To give you some idea of what the swim courses looked like:






You would not want to fight the current of the mighty Missouri. So the sheltered marina bay works out great. The water temperature was a refreshing 63-F...which was two degrees above what it was when I last did this event in 2008. Any way you slice it....its cold to us average Joe swimmers.

The race is put on by Epic Sports with race director Dennis Kemmesat once again doing a superb job of setting up this event. I cannot figure out why more Minnesotans don't try this event. Let me express to anyone on the east side of the Red River....if you want a flat (read fast) bike course this is it (sprint course). If you want a flat/fast Oly course sprinkled with a couple of really big grinders....this is it. I encourage you, check that. I implore you to put this one on your calendar for 2011. You'll love it.

My lone bitches on the race, petty as they are:
  • Oly start time was 12:30 PM. Sprint start time was 1:00 PM (two waves). Let me tell you...the air was still, the sun was beating down and we were cooking like a pig on a poke before the event even got underway. Is it possible to start this event earlier in the day?
  • The sprint was divided into 2 waves. By alphabet. A-K went in Wave 1. L-Z went in Wave 2. If one is going to have waves....break by male/female or even age group (39-under followed by 40-over) so that one can mark his competition.
Let's get into the race segments.

Swim - 500 meters
Goal - 9:00
Time - 9:45 (1:47 per 100 yds)
Overall Rank - 10 (60 total)
AG (40-49) Rank - 2nd (6 total)

We already mentioned it was nipple-hardening brisk in the water. Sprinkle in muddy, and slightly weedy (not as bad as Lake Independence for you Liberty participants) and vision is not something to worry about....'cause you can't see a damn thing.

I should have easily met my goal here. Here's what happened. I somehow got behind some yahoo who had no sense of direction and blocked my every move. I don't think he was blocking me intentionally. But he was the turtle and I was the northern pike and I need to get around him as I was losing seconds on every stroke.

If I tried to pass left, he moved left. If I tried to pass right, he moved right. Add insult to injury, he kicked me dead square in the chin...hard. Had me moving my tongue around to see if I had lost any teeth. That was it. I was now pissed off. So I went roller derby on him....making two strong strokes to move up on the inside and literally body bumped him out of the way. It was as if the sun came out and all of a sudden I had open water.

Time lost? I estimate 45-60 seconds.

Note @Curt Wood - My 2008 swim split was 10:25 wearing a Quintaroo suit. So the DeSoto (adjusting for the slow traffic) bought me approx. 1:30 over 500 meters.

T1
Goal - 2:00
Time - 1:42

Hey! Back under two minutes. The two piece Desoto Water Rover came off quicker this time. I think I'm getting use to it now. Just one minor issue with one leg...extra stomps required...but no issues here.

Bike - 20KTime
Goal - 33:35 (22.2 MPH)
Actual - 33:30 (22.6 MPH)
Overall Rank - 2nd (60 total)
AG (40-49) Rank - 2nd (6 total)

Oh. My. God. This is by far my favorite triathlon bike course I have ridden to date. I loved it in 2008. Still love it today. You just open up, get aero....and fly.

No issues with the calves. For the third event in a row. Whether all mental or the product, I am now a firm believer in this product. Available at Gear West. Stock up now.


Now, here is the silly part. I held back on the return of this out-and-back bike course. We'll get into that reasoning when I speak to the run. But question to my dear readers...all three of you...should I admonish myself for holding back some reserve or just let it go? One simply cannot go 100% for 100% of any triathlon. You have to know when to dial it in few even a few moments or risk totally bonking, correct? I'm open for input and comments.

I was happy to see myself in the upper 22's again. Its been a while. I need to be in the 23's but that will come later in the season. Happy as a clam after getting off the bike.

T2
Goal - 1:00
Time - 1:21

Lost unnecessary time here. One reason - my shoe horn had been moved. I use a shoe horn to slip quickly into the flats. Been doing this for years. It is soooo simple and quick. But the shoe horn was not where I had placed it. I wasted a few seconds looking, then just went to my Neanderthal thumbs. Twenty seconds lost easy.

Run - 5K
Goal - 20:24 (6:35 per mile)
Time - 21:16 (6:51 per mile)
Overall Rank - 3rd (60 total)
AG (40-49) Rank - 1st (6 total)

OK, let me tee this up. On Wednesday of last week I had done a planned 4-mile negative split workout. That meant I did the first mile under 7:40, the second mile under 7:30, the third mile under 7:20 and the last mile was to be sub-7's. You get the picture.

With a half-mile to go and me thinking how great I was doing/feeling, the left calf gave me a 1st degree warning shout. Lets break down the three degrees of muscle warnings:

3rd degree - You stepped on a rock and landed funny and the muscle gives you a 'what the feck are you doing' temporary twinge. You respond by snapping to attention, and keep on pushing at same pace. No worries.

2nd degree - You ask yourself if you had filled up the ice trays as you are going to need them when you get home. Temporary set back of one to two days.

1st degree - You know to shut it down immediately. Something is amiss. You will need every ACE bandage in the house along with Icy/Hot, ibuprofen, ice, heat, massage and prayer if you are competing later in the week.

And so I was in 1st degree hell. The pain was sudden and not good. It has to be an acute muscle injury to the inner calf. Imagine a line of pain straight down the center of the calf from knee to ankle. Tender to the touch. Can't bend the toes towards the knee.

I knew during warm ups on Sunday I was going to be in trouble. But when it came to the run I somehow just ran through the pain knowing that which each step I was causing more harm. My stride was right foot normal placement (toe plant and push) followed by a flat foot plant and push from the left. I have no idea how I managed a 6:51 pace...and the overall course is dead accurate. But I lost fifty seconds here off my goal which I know I can do.

Coulda. Woulda. Shoulda. Still proud of the effort. Live to fight another day.

Weekend Shout Outs!!!!

Huge, ginormous shout out to Adam "Wrong Way" Beston for winning top overall honors at the Utah Summer Games Oly triathlon despite a wrong turn. 2:05....incredible my man. Full results. I think we'll be seeing additional podium results from Adam yet this season.

Shout out to Don Schmeichel for winning the Clydesdale division at the Lake Minnetonka Triathlon. Don actually finished twelfth overall with the 10th best swim and 10th best bike and I see his run time is really make great strides. Don, tell your dad I was swearing at him big time when I was riding the inner trail at Pipestem mountain bike course this past Saturday.

Shout out to Chris Hawes for his 13th overall (43 total) in the male 35-39 AG at Lake Minnetonka. Chris is making a come back from a stress fracture and those run times are amazing! You are having a great comeback year!

Shout out to Mike Fretland for his third overall finish in the Bismarck Oly event. Mike, it is no sin to be chicked by Marnie Walth. And just so you know, post race she told me that you bury the training group on the bike. And thanks for your dad volunteering! He did a sweet job at transition and is a super nice guy. Best of luck at Lifetime!

Shout out to Steve Aesoph, race director/athlete. Steve spent Saturday winning a local 5K in Jamestown. Gave a mountain bike course tour of the upcoming Pipestem Creek XTERRA...all in the morning. Then returned in the afternoon to give me the same tour. He then raced Saturday. And that is the ONLY reason I came in ahead of him. He kicks my ass on any other day.

Shout out to Mario Minelli for his 2:13:26 Oly finish at the Rochesterfest Triathlon on Sunday. The results seem a little screwed up at the moment so I'm unsure of Mario's overall placement....but 2:13 is smokin'!

Finally, huge shout out to brother-in-law Kim Hocking who completed his first ever open water triathlon at Bismarck...and even took 2nd in his age group! Well done, sir! PS - Thanks for the shower and let Juanita know her food package saved me on the 6-hr drive home.

Next Event: Was to have been the Pipestem XTERRA. But due to the aforementioned calf, I will be taking a break from racing this coming weekend. That puts my next event on July 3, at Minneman. If still not completely recovered I will pass that event as well as Cornman is circled in big red on the race calendar. Cornman is the he Midwest Special Qualifier qualifies the top 33% per age group for the USAT Age Group National Championship in Tuscaloosa, AL on September 25, 2010. So I'm gunning for Cornman come hell or high water.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Ooooh, Pretty Colors


In the highly anticipated release of the new Team Tri Rochester uniforms, I thought I'd cover the top three kits I would want to most wear in a triathlon if I had  some extra Ben Franklins just laying around. And please keep in mind, that this lone wolf cares not one iota what you think of my selections. I've always been a person who marches to the beat of a different drummer. A drummer strung out on some very good reefer added in for good measure.

Choice Number Three: The bright orange colors of Spanish team Euskaltel Euskadi. While orange has different symbolic meanings, individual reactions to the color orange can vary widely. Taking at a psychological level, for me the color appears to be an exciting, joyful and fun hue. There's no sadness or sorrow to it.



Choice Number Two: The neon green of Team Liquigas/Cannondale. A little flashy in the grand Italian fashion and super easy to spot. Loud and proud. Just the opposite of my race day personality, which is probably the underlying reason why I would not hesitate to wear a Liquigas skin suit.



Choice Number One: By far the best kit worn in the triathlon world today..male or female....is that of Australian Michellie Jones. Jones is certainly a true legend and is instantly recognizable in her colors. The mix of colors just works for me on so many levels. No, I would not ride a pink bike, but I would wear the male version of this kit.



So what about y'all? What team kit do you most covet if you had your druthers to sport some fine threads during your next event?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Race Preview: Bismarck Sprint Triathlon

Event: 2010 Bismarck Triathlon (Sprint & Olympic distance races); competing in sprint distance event
Date: Sunday, June 20. Rare 12:30 PM (CST) start
Location: Bismarck, North Dakota
Previous Results: 4th overall in 2008



I competed at this event in 2008. The Bismarck Triathlon has been plagued by cool temperatures in the past resulting in the swim being cancelled and being turned into a duathlon. When I competed in 2008 the water temp was 61-degrees F, but the full tri was held. And that was nasty-freeeze-your-head-cold. The event has now been pushed out one week later in the year to try and allow the Missouri River (yep, a river swim) time to warm up. A wet suit is most certainly needed.

The following video is one I spliced together from 2008. It could have been edited a bit better but it is what it is. 85% swim. You can see me swimming along from the 4:09 to 4:17 section of the video. Notice the Boy® running with me at the end and doing his part to keep the course clean. What a little Cub Scout!


What I am amped and stoked about is not so much the Bismarck tri, but that on Saturday I will be meeting with race director Steven Aesoph in Jamestown to ride the mountain bike course on the Xterra Pipestem Creek course. Yeah, not your typical pre-race day workout....but Jamestown is on my way to Bismarck and what greater advantage to ride the offroad course the weekend before the event (June 26)!

But back to Bismarck. The course is well laid out. It is flat. It is fast. I'm setting some lofty goals for this Sprint distance triathlon: 500 meter swim, 20K bike, 5K run. My goals -

Swim: 09:00
T1: 02:00
Bike: 33:35 (22.2 MPH)
T2: 01:00
Run: 20:24 (6:35/mile)
Overall: 01:06:00

North Dakota can be a wee bit windy. Not the 10-12 MPH windy but the 20 gusting to 30 MPH kind of winds that have you cursing like a sailor after his fifth bottle of rum. That's about the only factor that could affect the outcome that is out of my control.

Update: Guess what. Early forecast shows winds from SE at 23 mph. That would be at our backs going out and against coming in on this out-and-back course. Dandy, just dandy.

Update (6/17): From fellow triathlete Mike Fretland - "Swam misty waters today at noon cold but bearable. Little weedy. We had 15-20mph wind today and the swim out was ok....swim back was brutal. The swim may cause some folks a little problem." Additonally, the current wind forecast is now showing ESE at 7 mph.

Have a great weekend competing or training as the case may be! I might be checking in later with some early photos or video from Jamestown. So check back if you are bored.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Photos from Liberty Triathlon

Here are a selection of photos from the Liberty Olympic Distance Triathlon from June 12, 2010. All are from Minnefotamoments.

The swim: See how I am bounding from the water with gusto?





The bike: No shades as they fogged up on me even before I left the bike rack in T1 due to the humidity and temp difference between water and air. And how about the wildlife? I train in this area and I've seen pheasant, turkey, very large turtles....but not a deer until now.







Transition: Once again, so much energy...just bounding off the bike....not.



The run: Looking old and haggard.








The finish: I have to learn how to smile like Chrissie when I cross the line! 





Sunday, June 13, 2010

Race Result: Liberty Olympic Distance Triathlon

Event: Liberty Triathlon
Date: Saturday, June 12
Location: Independence, MN
Results: Oly Results, Long Course Results

Personal results
Goal: First time at this event. Goal was to finish. First Oly in 21-years.
Actual: 2 hours, 22 minutes, 3 seconds
Overall: 17th (164 total); top 10.3%
Overall Male Age Group (45-49): 3rd (17 total) top 17.6%

The Recap

I was very apprehensive about this race going in. This would be my longest open water swim ever. I need not had worried. But we'll get into that. The air temperature was 55-degrees and the water temperature was 68-degrees. Overcast and it did eventually rain but not until I had finished. The winds were light at 7 out of the NNE. Damn near perfect.

For those wondering on my nutrition, post my bad experience the week before, I had a much lighter calorie load 3 & 1/2 hours before my start time. This consisted of a Hammer Nutrition bar, 1 & 1/2 scoops of Hammer Nutrition Perpetuem laced with a packet of Starbucks Via coffee in a water bottle, and a cup of Activa yogurt. And that was it. On the bike I had a water bottle of Hammer Nutrition HEED (1 & 1/2 scoops) and I consumed about 1/2 while on the bike.

Let's get into the race segments.

Swim - 1.5K
Goal - Finish!
Time - 27:01 (1:39 per 100 yds)
Overall Rank - 43rd (164 total)
AG (45-49) Rank - 3rd (17 total)


The DeSoto Water Rover performed flawlessly once again. I love this suit. There was a fair amount of traffic for the first 200-yards but then things opened up and I had smooth waters until the end when I was catching the previous wave and the later wave was catching me. I kept it very easy at the start, just to get relaxed and into rhythm. After that, I picked up steam and was surprised how quickly the turn-around was upon me. The back half of the swim was just maintaining form and listening to the little voice in my head to remain calm.

To tell the truth, I was a little surprised my time was not faster. It felt more like a 24-minute effort to me, but I was not complaining. I'm sure I had a very silly grin on my face as I exited.

Lake Independence is a good sized lake, murky, with a nice sandy bottom. There were some clingy weeds near the shore. I would not hesitate to swim in this lake again for practice.

T1
Goal - None, first time at event
Time - 2:39

Yep, second event in a row in which I exceeded two minutes in the first transition. Well, like any other event...it is easy to say, "Wow! You really must have had a bad time in T1"...without knowing how long the exit is. In this case, you have to navigate about a dozen wooden steps then run a good 75-yards to the transition area. And if you look at the 45-49 T1 results, all but two of the seventeen athletes went over 2 minutes. My T1 was seventh best overall in the AG.

I'm also still learning how to remove my two piece wet suit while running. Two pieces is a bit of an issue but I'm getting better.




As soon as I stand up in the water I am unzipping the upper piece. Unlike the normal wet suit, this one unzips bottom to top. Then you have to deal with removing it and not lose your goggles while getting over your head. I'm now removing goggles, holding in one hand while removing the upper and switching hands as I pull free.


By the time I have accomplished this I am usually at my bike. If still running I am getting the lower john off down to my waist. At the bike, I'm stomping the lower off. I figure I am losing some time with the two piece suit in T1 but I know without doubt this is greatly outweighed by the time gained in the water.

Also, I am no longer leaving the bike shoes clipped into the bike. I am putting on my shoes before leaving T1. Yes, I fully understand the time lost here. But also understand that I have had catastrophic results with losing a shoe or two as one or both come unclipped when I first exert pressure. Maybe this is something I work on when doing wind trainer rides.

Also adding to my T1 time at this event was that my helmet chinstrap went all goofy and I had to remove the helmet and try again. I think we've all had this happen at times.

And finally, I wore socks. Hey, my feet still have some open wounds from previous events. With a 10K run looming at the end I took a few seconds to put on socks and prevent further damage.

Bike - 40K
Goal - None, first time at event
Time - 68:15 (22.9 MPH)
Overall Rank - 26th (164 total)
AG (45-49) Rank - 3rd (17 total)

You know me by now. I'll always be brutally honest. I'd love to be able to tell you I rode 22.9 MPH for 40K. Um, no. The course was most certainly short. This is really where I miss a water resistant GPS watch (see previous discussions on Timex GPS and Garmin 310XT). My bike computer is not exactly calibrated spot on, but I would guess that the average bike MPH shown in the results are inflated by a factor of 1 MPH. So my effort is closer to 22 MPH than 23. Just wanted to state that up front.

The bike went well. I knew the route as I train on portions of the race course three or more times a week. I was in my element. I held back a tad as I had not tackled this distance in a race for some time. And I was worried that the calves would act up as they had in much shorter distances this year. They did not.

USAT officials were on their game at this event. A fair amount of penalties handed out for those considered blocking by staying on the left and making no effort to stay right. Near the end I was worried as I was going back and forth with Katherine Schlaefer (I believe), the eventual female overall winner on the bike. She would pass me on any climb and I would pass back on level ground or descents. We verbalized to let each other know when passing and clear and stayed out of trouble.


T2
Goal - None, first time at event
Time - 1:32

The only mistake I made all day. I ran down the wrong bike corral alley. Luckily I didn't lose much time as I had parked at the end and simply had to turn back up only three racks. I was obviously not thinking at the time! No other issues here.

Run - 10K
Goal - None, first time at event
Time - 42:39 (6:52 per mile)
Overall Rank - 13th (164 total)
AG (45-49) Rank - 2nd (17 total)

The first 1/3 of a mile of the out-and-back course was a nice little climb on a wood chip trail. I heard a lot of people portray this as a 'major' climb post-race. To those people "DO MORE HILLS IN TRAINING!"

The run was chilly. Not sure if it was the air temp combined with being damp or what. But I was chilled. It took a bit to get warm. But as I passed by the aforementioned Katherine Schlaefer....she giving me a "great job!" and I returning with a '"great bike" I was in form and running sub 6:50 per mile pace.

At the 5K turn-around, I was starting to hurt. I knew this would just be a 'how much gas is in the tank' moment. And both hamstrings were starting to tighten. I just concentrated on picking off runners in the distance, shortened my stride as things were starting to cramp up, and keep form best I could.

At the start of the run, I felt I had a chance to go under 2:20 which would have been nice. But now my only goal was to finish. And man, it was close. With 200-yards to go and the finish line in sight the right hamstring went completely. It tightened up like a piano wire. I gimped it in. No surrender. Personal glory of finishing an event I was doubting. Next!

Event Notes

This event was hosted by Final Stretch. They did a superb job of communication leading to the event. I have never gotten so much detail prior to an event. Traffic control was first rate as were the volunteers. The course was great (albeit the bike course was short IMHO). Post race food was very nice. They had a TON of terrific door prizes and I scored a bottle of Hammer Nutrition Endurolytes ($20 value). My only complaints...petty as they are:
  1. No finishers medal for the Oly. I'm sorry, but if I'm going to work that hard I want something to remember it by.
  2. My age group award was a somewhat chintzy quartz timer. Maybe I'm old school, but I want some hardware. Not a bag. Not a hat. Not a timer. That's stuff for a drawing.


Overall, a great run event and course. I would recommend to anyone considering a early distance Oly or 1/2 IM.

Next Event: Bismarck (North Dakota) Sprint Distance triathlon on June 20. My goal will be to take four minutes off my previous time (last raced in 2008).

Friday, June 11, 2010

Race Preview: Liberty Olympic Distance Triathlon

Event: 2010 Liberty Triathlon; competing in Olympic distance event
Date: Saturday, June 12
Location: Independence, MN
Previous Results: Never competed in this event



As I told one buddy this week, I am questioning why the heck I signed up for this Oly and looking for any excuse (flu, injury, weather) to just bag it. Yep, I'll admit to being a bit apprehensive about the swim. Worried that my calves will not hold up in the bike. And if I even make it out of the water and through the bike...that 10K run is looking real daunting right now.

Then I was listening to some music this week, and Moment of Surrender by U2 came up on the playlist. Some of the lyrics stayed with me:

At the moment of surrender
I folded to my knees
I did not notice the passers-by
And they did not notice me

I have ingrained into the Boy's® that we must never give up. We don't surrender. We get back on that horse....or bike....and ride. So coming off a bad bike the previous weekend, I'm going to try and settle the score this coming weekend and make it through the longest open water swim of my life. Then nail the bike. Then see what the legs will have left on the run.

I signed up as this event is in my backyard allowing me to swim in a lake I am familiar with. And I ride a portion of the actual bike course three or more times a week. So there is a certain comfort there. And while the bike course has some climbs, nothing is exceptionally hard. OK, maybe the climb coming out of Homestead Trail near the end of the bike, but I ride that hill three times a week and have come to love it as a trusted ally and friend, ahhhhh. Here is a side image from Google Earth 3D. It doesn't look so bad, does it? Trust me, you'll be changing through all your gears.



Here is the complete elevation map.





I have no goals other than finishing, period. If I am to finish, slow and steady will rule the day. Weather looks like it will be humid with chance of thunder. Temps will be lower 60s at race time. Humidity will be up there nearing 70%. Winds NNE at 9-10 MPH. 80% chance of rain. I may wear the wet suit the whole way.

But I won't surrender.

Schedule of Events

• 5:30am – Baker Park and Transition area open and body marking begins

• 7:15am – Mandatory Pre-race meeting (held at the lakefront)

• 7:25am – All athletes must be out of the transition area

• 7:30am – Half Iron Race Starts SWIM CAP COLOR

o Wave 1: 7:30am – All Competitive - Clyds, Athena,Teams Red (M & F),

o Wave 2: 7:33am – M 25 - 39 Purple

o Wave 3: 7:36am – F 25 – 44 Lt Blue

o Wave 4: 7:39am – M 40 – 54 Royal Blue

o Wave 5: 7:42am –M&F- 24 &under; F- 45&over; M - 50&over White

• ~8:00am – Olympic Race Starts

o Wave 1: 8:00am – All Competitive - Clyds, Athena,Teams Purple (M & F),

o Wave 2: 8:03am – M 40 and over White

o Wave 3: 8:06am – F – All Lt Blue

o Wave 4: 8:09am – M 39 and under Royal blue

• 10:00am – Anticipated first Olympic Finisher

• 10:30am – BBQ and Refreshments available at Driftwood Shelter

• 11:30pm – Anticipated first Half Iron Finisher

• ~11:15pm – Olympic Awards Ceremony

• ~2:15pm – Long course Awards Ceremony

Swim Course



Both the 1.5k (Olympic) and 1.2mi (Half Iron) swims leave from the South Beach in a counterclockwise direction keeping all buoys to your left. Swim exit is to the left side of the beach from where you started and will be marked by an arch for better visibility. Participants will ascend a flight of stairs (watch your step, slippery when wet!!) and head towards the transition area. The Olympic course will be marked with yellow, red, and orange buoys. Turn around at the first set of large orange turn buoys. The Half Iron course will go around all buoys continuing on past the first set of large orange buoys to a second set of large orange turn buoys. See above map.

We will have plenty of on-water assistance for you. Lifeguards in kayaks/canoes as well as motorized boat support (staffed by CPR/First Aid personnel), Hennepin County Sheriff’s patrol and dive team will be available for safety assistance. If you are in need of help remove your swim cap and wave it in the air. You are permitted to rest on buoys, boats, etc. in the water; however, you may not use them to advance you along the course. If you utilize anything other than your own power to move yourself forward and/or are pulled from the water you may not re-enter and continue.

OLYMPIC DISTANCE BIKE COURSE

Exit the transition area to the north to begin bike course. Helmets are to be worn at all times while on the bike and must be on with chinstrap fastened before you take your bike off the rack. You will take a bike path up to the park entrance. Please use caution on this section as it is narrow (only a block long) with a very tight left turn at the top of the hill. Take a right out of the park onto County Road 19. Merge/turn right onto Perkinsville Rd. Right turn onto Budd St. Left turn onto Pagenkopf. Right turn onto County Road 90. Right turn onto County Rd 11. Right turn onto County Rd 19. Left turn onto Hamel Road. Right turn onto Hunter. Left turn onto Medina Road. Right turn onto Holy Name Road. Right turn onto County Road 24. Left turn onto Hunter Road. Right turn onto County Road 6. Right turn onto Homstead Trail/JCT 201. Left turn onto County Road 24. Left turn onto Country Road 19. Right turn into park. Again use CAUTION as the path is narrow. Once off the bike path keep left on your way up to the transition area.

Make sure to dismount at the line prior to entering transition. Bikes MAY NOT be ridden in transition. Helmets must remain on and chin straps fastened until your bike is racked.

HALF IRON DISTANCE BIKE COURSE – 2 LOOPS!!

1st LOOP – Exit the transition area to the north to begin bike course. Helmets are to be worn at all times while on the bike and must be on with chinstrap fastened before you take your bike off the rack. You will take a bike path up to the park entrance. Please use caution on this section as it is narrow (only a block long) with a very tight left turn at the top of the hill. Take a right out of the park onto County Road 19. Merge/turn right onto Perkinsville Rd. Right turn onto Budd St. Left turn onto Pagenkopf. Right turn onto County Road 90. Right turn onto County Rd 11. Right turn onto County Rd 19. Left turn onto Hamel Road. Right turn onto Hunter. Left turn onto Medina Road. Right turn onto Holy Name Road. Right turn onto County Road 24. Left turn onto Hunter Road. Right turn onto County Road 6. Right turn onto Homstead Trail/JCT 201. Left turn onto County Road 24. Left turn onto Country Road 19.

2nd LOOP – Merge/turn right onto Perkinsville Rd. Right turn onto Budd St. Left turn onto Pagenkopf. Right turn onto County Road 90. Right turn onto County Rd 11. Right turn onto County Rd 19. Left turn onto Hamel Road. Right turn onto Hunter. Left turn onto Medina Road. Right turn onto Holy Name Road. Right turn onto County Road 24. Left turn onto Hunter Road. Right turn onto County Road 6. Right turn onto Homstead Trail/JCT 201. Right turn onto County Road 24. Turnaround at County Road 24 just prior to Hunter Road. Left turn onto County Road 19. Right turn into park. Again use CAUTION as the path is narrow. Once off the bike path keep left on your way up to the transition area.

Make sure to dismount at the line prior to entering transition. Bikes MAY NOT be ridden in transition. Helmets must remain on and chin straps fastened until your bike is racked.

Aid stations are available for the long course at approx. miles 14, 26, 39. Bottled Water and HEED in water bottles will be available. Please slow down for the bottle exchange.

PLEASE DO NOT DISCARD BOTTLES, GEL PACKETS, OR OTHER ITEMS ON THE BIKE COURSE

If you do not make the 12:30pm bike cut off you WILL NOT be allowed to continue on to the run course. You will be allowed to finish the bike course; however, police support/traffic control will not be available after 12:30pm. You will have to obey all State of Minnesota Traffic Laws and use caution crossing intersections on your way back to the park.

A Sag wagon will be available to transport participants back to the park from the course, but will not be able to offer mechanical assistance to participants.




RUN COURSE:

Run is an out and back for both events. Run exits transition from the end closest to the water and you will run on the path down to the lakeshore and turn left along the shore. Take a left onto the hiking trail. At the top of the hiking trail take a right onto campground trail and head counterclockwise around campground. Take a right down the hill and through the tunnel. Left at “T” out of tunnel and head in a clockwise direction around Lake Katrina until you reach the turnaround. Volunteers will be recording race numbers at the turnaround for both events. Make sure to have your number FORWARD FACING and help them out by yelling out your race number as you approach. Follow the path back along Lake Katrina counterclockwise. Take a right and head back up through the tunnel. Left at the top of the Tunnel hill and follow the path back through the campground. Left at the top of the hiking trail. At the bottom of the trail you will take a right and head to the finish line located along the waterfront of Lake Independence.

Restrooms are located at miles 2, 3, 5, 8, 10, 11. Run course aid stations will be available every 1-1.5 miles for both the Olympic and Half Iron races and will have water, HEED, Hammer Gels, E-Caps, and carbs.






Thursday, June 10, 2010

Review: Timex Ironman Global Trainer GPS Sport Watch

Earlier this week I wrote that I was going to be getting the highly anticipated Timex Ironman Global Trainer GPS Sport Watch direct from REI. It arrived. And it's going back with not so much as a field test.

I had been really excited. On paper, the Timex GPS appeared to be less clunky than the Garmin water resistant model (310XT). Here is a how the Garmin 310XT looks. I believe my son would say, 'that thing is ginormus!"



I have the Garmin 405,  and love it. Really love it. The watch is normal sized and works very well...but can't use it in the water. Which means it is relegated to training, running races, and duathlons.

The Garmin 310XT is water resistant but looks dorky and huge on your wrist. When I saw the Timex, I was all over it. I've worn Timex Ironman watches since their inception. I still use one during my swim workouts.

The package from REI came and I opened it up like a kid on Xmas morning. I removed the box. And I literally said out loud, "you have got to be kidding me." Let me share with you an actual photo of the new watch as it appeared on my wrist. That face, my friends, is a whopping 2 1/4 inches across. Take out your tape measure now....and see how 2 1/4 inches looks on your wrist, or forearm actually!



Seriously, would you wear that behemoth on your wrist for training every day? Would you wear it in a triathlon? Would you even be able to get your wet suit over it! I kept thinking of when the very first cellular phones came out. Remember how those things looked?



For comparison sake, here is the Timex Global GPS compared side-by-side to the Garmin 405. Me thinks I'll be waiting for Garmin to create a water resistant 405 that is no larger than todays model.



Until then, this triathlete is holding out and will continue to make due with just a simple old water resistant sports watch for my water training and triathlons. Thoughts?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Timex Ironman Global Trainer GPS Sport Watch

Take a look at this beauty. A water resistant GPS watch that doesn't like some mini-computer on your wrist.




This is the new Timex Ironman Global Trainer GPS Sport Watch, only available from REI. I first heard of it through pro triathlete and Team Timex member Erin Kummer. Erin was the '08 XTERRA National Champion just committed to Pipestem XTERRA which I'll be doing later this June, my first ever off road tri.

The Timex GPS appears to be less clunky than the Garmin water resistant model (310XT). I have the Garmin 405, love it...but can't use in the water. The Garmin 310XT is water resistant but looks dorky and huge on your wrist.

I have wanted a watch I could race with and use in the water. I use my Garmin 405 daily for workouts and also in road races and du's and have come to depend on the splits for the run to keep me where I need to be. The Timex looks and sounds like the real deal. I was very intrigued. So I reached out to Erin to learn a bit more about the watch.

Brian said...



That is exciting about the Timex GPS. The Garmin water resistant watch....the Garmin 310XT...looks dorky and huge on your wrist. This looks to be normal sized Timex Ironman watch? Will it read GPS and map from the swim? Will it display bike speed in MPH and run pace in miles/minute automatically so when doing a tri all you have to do is glance or do you need to program for a tri event? Oh, and thanks for coming to the Pipestem Xterra. It will be a blast!

Erin replied...

Hey Brian,


I'm super stoked to be coming out for the Pipestem XTERRA...I can't wait! I'm also really amped that you like the Timex GPS watch. Yes, it will read GPS in the swim and as far as programming, you just need to set the multisport mode and you can view up to 4 displays at once for each discipline. I'll have one at the race in ND for everyone to check out and play around with! See you there.

Well, I'm a simple man. So I ordered (with heart rate monitor) and it will be arriving this coming Wednesday (June 9) in time for me to experiment a bit and use at the Liberty Oly...if I can somehow manage to make it out of the water alive.

I will post follow-up comments and review later in the week.

Again, it is only available from REI. You can order the model sans heart rate monitor ($275) or with heart rate monitor ($325). Some specs and stuff:

The Timex Ironman® Global Trainer® GPS sport watch with heart rate monitor helps you improve training and performance by providing the tools to monitor and analyze your workout.


•Featuring SiRFstarIII™ GPS technology, the watch quickly locks on to satellite signals to measure pace, speed and distance in real time

•Watch measures your location and tracks altitude ascent and descent distances and rates

•Records up to 100 GPS waypoints so you can find your way home or create custom routes; recall up to 50 custom routes so you can track your pace

•Included heart rate chest strap takes continuous readings of your heart rate and sends them to the watch so you can monitor how your body is performing

•Adjustable and flexible elastic strap makes the sensor comfortable to wear; ANT™ technology eliminates cross talk with other heart rate monitors

•Custom heart rate target zones help maximize performance, whether your goal is to burn fat or train for a race; visual and audible alarms alert you when you fall out of a zone

•Watch counts and displays calories burned during a training session

•Customize the display to show up to 4 windows of information so you can monitor pace, distance, split time and heart rate all at the same time

•Chronograph with interval and countdown timers lets you develop personal workouts that will help you improve your performance

•Performance pacer mode helps you meet goals and set personal records

•Watch is water resistant to 50m (165 ft.)

•Download your workout and route data and analyze it using online training software

•Customize and manage watch settings using the included desktop software

•Recharge the internal lithium-ion battery by connecting the watch to your computer with the included USB cable or plug it into the wall with the included AC adapter

•Compatible with Timex bike sensors (sold separately) that use ANT+™ wireless technology; also compatible with third-party bike power sensors using ANT+




Sunday, June 6, 2010

Race Result: Buffalo Sprint Triathlon

Event: Buffalo Sprint Triathlon
Date: Sunday, June 6
Location: Buffalo, MN
Results: Sprint Results, Oly Results

Personal results
Goal: None, first time at this event
Actual: 1:06.52
Overall: 35 (724 total); top 4.8%
Overall Male Age Group (45-49): 5 (57 total) top 8.7%
 
The Recap

It wasn't my day. I offer up the following not as excuses, but as possible answers so that I might not repeat them and also to help others.
  1. I had spent two days with family in North Dakota as we laid my grandmother to rest. Sort of hard to avoid the funeral of a loved one, especially my favorite grandparent. It was emotionally draining to say the least. I'm still processing it.
  2. Travel to and from NoDak meant that I spent ten hours on the road. I can't say it really affected training as I would have been tapering anyone and I was able to get in one run. But the legs were dead. I'm not sure if this can be viewed as an issue as I had no problems with my drive to Arkansas earlier in the year.
  3. Over hydration possibility. Here's where I want to focus some time, offer up some facts and also hear from my fellow tri-geeks to see what they think. I really encourage some comments here! So let us dive into what I think bothered me the most at Buffalo.
I had my usual cup of Joe upon awakening. I had a water bottle of Hammer Nutrition Perpetuem (2 scoops). This is my usual race day card. What I added was 3 capsules of Hammer Nutrition Endurance Amino. One four hours before the event and two 90-mins prior to.

During swim warm up I noticed that my hams were on verge of cramping up. Some toes did cramp up. This was highly unusual. Sure, that happens at the pool sometimes towards the end of a work out. But never in warm ups.

On the bike, my hands were experiencing cramps. I was becoming, shall we say, overtly concerned. So what was going on?

Optimal nutritional support for endurance athletics means consuming the right amount of the right nutrients at the right time. You can neither overload nor under supply your body without compromising athletic performance and incurring detrimental results. The principle of avoiding both too much and too little especially applies to hydration, where serious consequences occur from either mistake. If you don’t drink enough, you’ll suffer from unpleasant and performance-ruining dehydration. Drink too much, however, and you’ll not only end up with impaired athletic performance, you may even be flirting with potentially life-threatening water intoxication.

One of the most respected researchers on hydration, Dr. Tim Noakes, studied the effects of thousands of endurance athletes and noted that the front-runners typically tend to dehydrate, while over hydration occurs most often among middle to back-of-the-pack athletes. Both conditions lead to hyponatremia (low blood sodium), but through different processes. Excess water consumption causes what is known as “dilutional hyponatremia,” or an overly diluted level of sodium and electrolytes in the blood. This is as bad as under-hydrating in regards to increased potential for muscular cramping, but has the added disadvantages of stomach discomfort, bloating, and extra urine output. And, as mentioned earlier, in some unfortunate circumstances, excess hydration can lead to severe physiological circumstances, including death.

The last few races it seems I have been reaching a point early in the bike where I reach the puke stage. I never do, I just feel like I'm going to hurl and then it goes away. And leading up to the gun, you can find me in the line for that one last 'nervous pee', which may in fact not be nerves at all, but over hydration?

Unfortunately, endurance athletes too often adopt the “if a little is good, a lot is better” approach. This can lead to significant problems when you’re trying to meet your hydration requirements. All it takes is one poor performance or DNF due to cramping and you start thinking, “Hmm, maybe I didn’t drink enough.” This was me at Buffalo. I'd been cramping up in the calves the last couple of races. Next thing you know, you’re drinking so much water and fluids that your thirst is quenched but your belly is sloshing and you’re still cramping. Remember, both under supply and oversupply of fluid intake will get you in trouble.

How much should one drink? One expert, Dr. Ian Rogers, suggests that between 500-750 milliliters/hr (about 17-25 fluid ounces/hr) will fulfill most athletes’ hydration requirements under most conditions. I believe all athletes would benefit from what Dr. Rogers says: “Like most things in life, balance is the key and the balance is likely to be at a fluid intake not much above 500 milliliters (about 17 ounces) per hour in most situations, unless predicted losses are very substantial.”

Let's get into the race segments.

Swim - 1/4 mile (440 yards)
Goal - None, as this was my first time at this venue. Was hoping for under 7:20
Time - 6:03 (1:23 per 100 yds)
Overall Rank - 60th (724 total)
AG (45-49) Rank - 7th (57 total)

Buffalo Lake is apparently low this year so the start was essentially wading, jumping and sloshing to a point where you could actually begin to swim. I felt good through the first half. The second half I took in several mouthfuls of water and had some mild panic but was otherwise fine. But my mind was just not right. I kept thinking, "there is just no way I can do 1500-meters next weekend at the Liberty Oly." It's never a good sign that you are in a race and looking towards the next one, especially with glass-half-empty attitude.

Otherwise, I was extremely pleased with the time. The DeSoto Water Rover was a bit warm, but again performed flawlessly.

T1
Goal - None, first time at event
Time - 2:26

This is a fairly long transition, but not overtly horrid. There is a steep hill/ramp that one had to navigate to get out of T1 but otherwise this was a good transition setup. I had only minor issues with the wet suit removal.

Bike - 13 miles
Goal - None, first time at event, but wanted over 22 MPH
Time - 36:34 (21.0 MPH)
Overall Rank - 41st (724 total)
AG (45-49) Rank - 7th (57 total)
 
I was never comfortable during the bike, as spoken to earlier. I started out fine, but once we got into the hills it sort of all fell apart on me and I never regained form. I just felt sort of ill, and I was really struggling with some of the grades that should really not have bothered me that much. I never got into attack mode. I got passed a half dozen times, and simply could not respond.
 
T2
Goal - None, first time at event
Time - 1:30

This was actually very smooth for me. I had no issues with cramps during the switch into racing flats. I went out the T2 exit intent on trying to make up some lost time.

Run - 3 miles
Goal - None, first time at event, but wanted to be under 6:40 per mile
Time - 20:21 (6:47 per mile)
Overall Rank - 32nd (724 total)
AG (45-49) Rank - 3rd (57 total)

The first 1/3 of a mile of the out-and-back course was pretty painful as it seemed like both hamstrings wanted to cramp up on me. I was worried I was going to have to walk and stretch it out. I shortened my steps and everything came back for me. I was clicking pretty good and remained strong through the whole run. I'm sure I could have gone harder. I was just trying to spy ages on the back of legs to see if I could pass anyone in my age group. I passed two, little good that it did me as it was not to be a podium day for me.

I liked the event. The lake has a great sandy bottom. It was well run and organized and everything held to schedule. Could have use a few more biffies, but then, everyone always complains about lack of those! The bike course (oval) was challenging, but not horribly so. The last 1/2 mile of the bike was a little weird navigating through some back alleys and side streets. And the roads were a bit rough in some spots.

The run (out-and-back) was flat. It was congested at times as you were competing with the bikers coming in in conjunction with runners going both directions. And there was a few areas of back alley moments were it was really crowded. I'm nit picking. If you've not done the event, I think it is one you should consider.


The goody bag was sweet. A nice mesh bag, a water bottle, and a t-shirt. The finishers medal was very nice as well, on pare with some of the better finishers medals out there today.


And as always, I met a lot of nice people. I must have been looking very handsome today as I had a lot of the 40-49 chicks asking me a ton of questions. The Well Kept Wife™ might want to start appearing at these events instead of ranging in her garden!?!? The questions posed ranged from my bike setup to the calf compression sleeves I wore. Which worked well under the wet suit and since I didn't have a calf cramp...did their job?

Next Event: Liberty Olympic Distance triathlon. Prediction - I won't make it out of the water.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Race Preview: Buffalo Sprint Triathlon

This is going to be a short preview. I'm in North Dakota to attend the funeral of my grandmother, Lorraine, in Jamestown, NoDak. She was my last remaining grandparent. And at age 91, feisty to the end. She was a wonderful grandparent and I expect 98% of my personal snarkiness comes from her. She often referred to me as 'that little shit' and it was stated as a compliment. I will miss her.

I'll then be returning to the Twin Cities in time to compete this Sunday (6/5) in the Buffalo sprint triathlon. The sprint course consists of a 1/4 mile swim, 13 mile bike, and 3 mile run. There is also a Olympic distance event at Buffalo. This will be my first time at this race.


I am setting no goals for this little speed workout. What is more important to me is coming out healthy and with a good frame of mind going into my own Olympic distance event six days after. I'm just doing this to get my racing legs back under me post the Fargo Half-Marathon.

Looking a bit further out in June, my first off road triathlon (June 26) just got some wonderful news late this week. Per race director Steven Aesoph, there is now confirmation that Erin Kummer, pro triathlete for Team Timex, committed to race XTERRA Pipestem Creek!!! She's bringing a team car, handing out Timex and Powerbar shwag and doing a Q&A at the athlete social Friday night before the race. Erin was also the '08 XTERRA National Champion so chances are very high I will be getting chicked that day. If you have ever wanted to try a off road tri, still plenty of time to sign up.

Some shout outs:

To future shuffle board and hip replacement partner, Mario Minelli for his 2nd overall at the Med City 5K with a time of 18:32 (5:58 per mile pace).

To Christopher Jenks, son of the legendary Iowegian William, for winning his age group at the Bluff Creek Sprint Tri. As I told William, the apple did not fall far from the tree.

Good luck to all those competing this weekend!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Totals: Month Ending May 2010

I expected my hours and mileage to drop in May. I had two events to travel to, minor eye surgery, tons of work at the Real Job, a half-marathon to recover from, and a bout of spring allergies. Somehow, I still managed to rack up some good, quality workouts.

The highlights were beating the previous course record at the Lakes to Pines Triathlon (as did six others!), and meeting my goal of running sub 1:30 at the Fargo Half-Marathon. Not sure what June will bring, but I'll sure be ready. My only concerns will be the number of events I have scheduled, such as my first Oly in over twenty years.

The other worry came rushing to the forefront this past Memorial Day. I reaquainted myself with my first love. Off-road cycling. Growing up in Jamestown, NoDak.....all cycling was off-road. I remember it being a blast.

So my worry now is,  fresh off my single-track attack this at Lake Rebecca Park Reserve where I was barely able to sustain a 12 MPH average over 7.5 miles (wow that was some seriously hard cycling)...will I be having a blast doing my first off road triathlon (see schedule below)?

Note: Hey, all you mountain bikers! What is the secret? I'm not even sure what took more of a beating; my legs or my arms!



Numbers for May, 2010. All per Garmin expect where noted.

May 2010 Total Numbers
Total Workout Hours: 41:09.05
Swim Miles - 11.36
Bike Miles - 344.85
Run Miles - 111.54  (8:00 per mile avg)

compare to last year

May 2009 Total Numbers
Swim Miles - 9.35
Bike Miles - 313.75
Run Miles - 12.99 (Nike Plus). Yes, just under 13 miles for the whole month in '09. Gotta love those Achilles injuries.


My run per mile average went up over April. Just a small blip as I was running the day after the half-marathon....but v--e--r--y slowly. It took me four days just to be running close to normal. Ten days later I am still running slow. No injury, mind you. But the legs are still recovering.

Last Month

April 2010 Total Numbers
Total Workout Hours: 39:44.09
Swim Miles - 10.23
Bike Miles - 376.20
Run Miles - 103.27 (7:47 per mile avg)

Upcoming in June

June 6 (signed up) - Buffalo Sprint Triathlon - 1/4 mi swim, 13 mi bike, 3 mi run

June 12 (signed up) - Liberty Triathlon (USAT) - Olympic Course - 1.5K Swim, 40K Bike, 10K Run

June 20 (possible, if I can recover from the Oly quick enough) - Bismarck Tri - 500m Swim, 20k Bike, 5k Run

Jun 26 (signed up) - XTERRA Pipestem Creek Off Road Triathlon - Swim 1000 meters, Mountain Bike 13 mi, Trail Run 5 mi