This was the best triathlon I’ve done. It was well organized just like the 2 other times I’ve done it, but the difference this time was that the temperatures were perfect (water and air) and I only did the Sprint distance.
The water temperature was so great that for the first time ever I chose to hang out in the water as I waited for my turn to begin swimming. My feet did not hurt horribly like they do when I get in cold water; actually, they did not hurt at all! It was great. Some young punks did it without a wetsuit, I’m sure they didn’t feel the temperature was perfect. I heard people say the water temp was 67F, but they were just guessing.
The bike was a bit windy but the temp was around 69F so it was overall very pleasant. Drafting (going closely behind another bike rider so he/she breaks the wind for you) is illegal in triathlons. And this is the first time that I had issues with this. I worked really hard to catch up with dude and I finally passed him right when we made a turn where we found the worst headwind. He then drafted off of me for a little bit (he cheated here a little) and then obviously passed me. I then passed him again. After a while he passed me a second time. At that point I drafted behind him for a looong time until we turned and didn’t have as bad of a headwind. I then passed him and he never caught up with me. I totally cheated a bit there but hey, I’m the one that caught up with him right? If there was no drafting, I would have continued going farther ahead of him after I passed him initially , that’s my logic and I’m sticking with it!
On the run, the weather continued being excellent, wind is really not a problem there. My right hamstring felt like it was going to cramp out. This happened because I was really trying hard to wear my hamstrings down on the bike part. I had to walk a few times because of this, but I made sure I walked when the trail got steep. After a while the hamstring was not an issue and I began going faster and faster and gave it all on the last half a mile of the 3.5 mile course.
This weekend Cody, Shaun, and I did our Alpine ride. We start at Corner Canyon on Draper, and go over the mountain to the Alpine side where we go by the natural water slide, the bike ramp that ends into a pond, we ride the “blood chute”, and go through a ranch that has camels. Yeah, camels in Alpine Utah, strange…
The leaves were falling and changing color. We rode through several spots where the ground was covered with orange/brown leaves and the trees had reddish leaves. It was cool.
It was a tough ride, it took about 3 hours (I haven’t downloaded my Garmin watch data).
I’m still biking to work but I need a front strobe light because it is pitch dark when I leave my house. This morning a car did not see me when doing a right hand turn to merge into the main street I always ride; I had to stop really hard to avoid hitting it. It didn’t catch me by surprise because I always ride thinking nobody sees or respects bikers so I was ready for that hard stop. Besides, it was part my fault for not having a front light.
For safety’s sake I’ll stop bike commuting until I get a front light, which I hope will be after work tomorrow. The commute is getting cold in the morning but it is still not too bad; the night low is still in the forties. I’ll stop riding when the low gets below below 40F. There is no snow or rain so my guess is I still have 2 to 3 weeks of bike commuting.
Today I rode the Heber Metric Century Ride with Cody, Nicholle, and Jeff. I had a great time, nothing like a long ride with good friends. The scenery was awesome too, we went through rural roads with a lot of green fields and green mountains with very blue skies. And the leaves started changing colors around Heber so we would also see some bright orange trees in the middle of the mountains.
We rode through some isolated roads which were really smooth to ride. Well, most of them where, there was 2 miles of hard packed dirt road. And since my butt was already hurting a little, those 2 miles definitely wore it out and I was in pain the rest of the way…
I feel like muscle-wise I could have ridden the 100 mile ride (as opposed to the 100km one). But my butt was definitely not ready for the challenge. Humm,,, well and now that I write this, I remember that my knee also began to hurt a bit at mile 40 so I took some Ibuprofen (400mg) and that made things be normal for the remaining 17 miles.
This knee thing means I’m not doing long rides any time soon. I might do 50 milers but no more than that. I’ve been really good with my knee this year. I really have not made it hurt since April’s SLC Marathon. And today doesn’t really count.
I didn’t take any pictures of the ride =(, but I took one of my “farmer’s tan” when I got home:
After the ride we went to grab some food and a couple of beers. Carol and Anika met us there but they would not let them in! It turned out the place was a bar and not a restaurant/bar, so you had to be over 21 to get in. I gotta start thinking about that when we’re out with the little one.
Carol, Anika, and I then went to check out Jonsons Mill, a nice bead and breakfast where we might stay some day. We hung out on the gardens, pond, and stream that goes through it. They had a cool thing with a rope where you could make it spin as you grabbed the rope and flew over a stream, it was pretty cool.
My commute to work is getting chilly, today was my first day wearing full finger gloves. And think I’ll start covering my ears soon.
The sun only hits me in the last mile of my 5 mile bike ride to work.
I’ve thought for the longest time that my commute was 6 miles but I measured it last week and it’s really 5.2 miles.
I’m happy to say that I rode to work 4 to 5 times a week throughout the entire summer. The days that I didn’t ride to work were days that I wanted to use my old Mazda a little, just to make sure it didn’t break since I’ll be using it during my winter commutes.
I’ll continue riding to work until it gets uncomfortably cold. I have at least one month more of riding.
And to end this post with some cuteness, here’s a picture of Anika grocery shopping that I found on my phone while getting the picture above.
This year’s MTB season began yesterday for me with a 1 hour 45 minute ride on the Corner Canyon trails.
Since I’ve been road biking a bit (commuting plus some rides). I felt ready to start where we left off last year. So I downhilled all the fun trails of corner canyon: Jacob’s ladder, ghost falls, and the new coyote hollow one (that’s how it is called right?). It was 11.3 miles of fun:
The trails were in perfect condition. I did the jump at the end of Jacob’s ladder, the one we just barely manned up to do at the end of last year. It felt, again, not as hard core as it looks. It had a deep, big, puddle of water that you have to clear, which is cool. Ghost falls was cool as usual. And Coyote Hollow was better than ever, it felt like an entirely settled trail.
I didn’t plan this ride in advance so I just went alone. I enjoy the occasional solo ride though. I’m looking forward to more MTB action this year!
I lowered my training mileage significantly 2 weeks ago after my knee started having a new and consistent pain when hitting higher mileage.
2 weeks ago I was certain my goal of a 4 hour marathon was going to be achievable. I’m not so sure about this now. Achieving this goal will be hard. I’m already preparing myself for the the worst but at the same time trying to stay positive and think that maybe there will be no pain at all and the marathon will be a piece of cake… that I’ll be able to go through al 26.2 miles feeling happy, being patient, and above all, under a 9 minute mile pace at all times (not counting steep hills).
On saturday I ran 13 miles, I took 400mg of Ibuprofen 1 hour before the run and my knee did not bother me at all when running. But the next day my knee was in pain and I felt like my healing process was hindered when I went up and down stairs; it would hurt.
I ran 8 miles yesterday (wednesday) with no Ibuprofen and my knee did not bother much when running. It’s feeling a bit sore today but I can climb stairs without feeling I’m injuring the healing process; pretty much no pain.
So on marathon day I will take again 400mg of Ibuprofen and I will make sure my knee is healed up before the race. This means this coming week I won’t train much. I might run 6 miles total. With 4 being monday or tuesday.
I look at my heart rate a lot when I run and use these 3 levels as guides assuming I’m running about 10 miles.
150-155 beats per minute: I feel like the run is a walk in the park. I don’t even pay attention to my breathing. Pace is around 9 minutes per mile.
155-160: I’m getting a good workout. My breathing is fast but I could still miss a couple of breaths and would be fine. I usually fall into an in in oooout, in in ooout breathing mode. Pace is around 8:30 minute miles.
160-165: I’m going hard. Every breath counts. I’m in iiin ooout, iiiin ooout mode. But I can still finish my workout ok (assuming it is about 10 miles). Pace is around 8 minute miles.
So this is my marathon plan: The race starts at 7am. So I’ll take 400mg of ibuprofen at 6am with a 350 calorie ensure. I’ll have another 350 calorie ensure when I wake up. Running a marathon takes like 2600 calories from you. There is no way in hell I can carry or eat enough when running to make up for that but I’ll carry some Gu’s (I’m thinking 4 or 5; 100 calories each) with me and make sure I eat bananas at the aid stations.
For hydration, I typically do one cup of gatorade and one cup of water. There are 16 aid stations on this marathon so I might not do this on all of them; but I will on most.
Heart rate wise I’ll keep it in the 153-158 range for the first 18 miles. Depending on how I feel I might adjust there.
I’ll carry another 400mg of Ibuprofen with me just in case. But if I need these it means I’m seriously hurting my knee so I might decide to give up on my goal of a 4 hour marathon.
So those are only a few things we marathoners worry about (and plan for) but I don’t want to bore you with all of them. Figuring out when to poop is critical and you can’t fully control it, what to eat the days before, which of your shoes to wear, how will you be carrying your stuff during the run, etc….
Wish me luck!
Celeste and I ran the St. Patrick’s Day 5K yesterday. We were lucky the weather changed and it wasn’t raining. It was a bit chilly but great for running. I ran in shorts, light t-shirt, and my running gloves; the layering was just right.
I ate a little bit one hour before the race thinking it was going to help me, but it didn’t. I felt like puking after the first mile. But that didn’t stop me, I figured I only had 2 miles more to go.
The first half of the race I had a 13 year old girl running ahead of me! She finished just 1 or two minutes after me, hard core. She was tiny, long blond curly hair, and thick glasses.
I finished the race in 21 minutes 29 seconds. It’s the fastest 5K I’ve ran. I got third place in my age group. And celeste got 2nd place in hers! The Neumont Runners are on fire!
Thanks Greg for taking pictures! And for holding our stuff as we were running =). Next time I need to grab the camera and include you in the pics.
Once the race was over, Cody showed up and we went to Rumrz to have a couple of beers to celebrate St. Patty’s. Carol joined us there for a bit a little later. It was a really fun race.
With the marathon only 10 weeks away, I figured it was time to get serious.
I had been following a training schedule that was not prepared specifically for me so I was being really flexible. And I was in the mindset of running only 2 times a week with one day of swimming.
But after reading a bit about marathon training, I noticed all training programs say that in order to improve you have to run at least 3 times a week. And right now I feel I’ve been training too close to just barely meeting my goal of a 4hr marathon.
So I revamped the schedule and customized it for me. Check it out here. This fits perfect with my weekly wednesday swim that I do with friends. I took a lot of ideas from Hal Higdon’s training guide. He recommended the swim to be a day after the long run (monday). But I didn’t want to ask my friends to change the day we go swimming, plus I feel unusually tired after work on Mondays.
And don’t think I’m just counting the weeks and days for the marathon. My baby girl will be born around that time too and I’m extremely excited about that! But prepping for the baby to come is less demanding than training for the marathon. At least for me, not for Carol that is carrying 25 extra pounds right now!
Here’s a timeline of when I started with each triathlon discipline along with my accomplishments:
I’ve loved biking since I was a kid. So I got into mountain biking as soon as my mom would not freak out with long rides (I sometimes did 12 hr rides!).
Swimming and running are relatively new to me (specially running). Here’s a little timeline:
April 2007 – bought my Specialized FSRxc Pro so I started mountain biking again. Maybe once a month and by myself. I’m really grateful Carol told me to splurge and go with a full suspension “because it’s what you like to do” she said. I love you Carol.
December 2007 – did a little swimming during the winter just because I could not bike any more. I swam once a week at Life Time Fitness and only did it for about 2 months. Before this I really only swam about 4 times a year when I was on some sort of vacation.
Mt bike 2008 – I was in love with my Specialized mountain bike so I biked a ton. I biked with some Neumont students, then with the wildman Haaga, then Nick (whom I met because he was Neumont’s student IT worker), and then the Goathead Riders (Cody, then Daren, and then Shaun “The Machine”. Justin was also a goathead rider.)
December 2008 – did a fare amount of swimming at Life Time Fitness during winter. Twice a week for about 4 months.
Mt Bike 2009 – That was truly the year of the Goatheads. We all knew each other and we all loved mountain biking. We biked tons and really got to know each other. Saldy, the wildman slowly stopped biking with us since the beginning of the season.
September 2009 – got my Fuji Absolute commuter bike and used it a bit until winter struck. I had no idea I was going to get into the whole triathlon thing so I did not get a road bike. I ended up using this bike to train and compete on a lot of triathlons.
October 2009 - began running mostly because of The Machine. Without doing a lot of talking, he got us all excited with his “hardcoreness” and the whole triathlon thing. I had biked for months with the guy without knowing he had done multiple Ironmans, super long running (50 and 100 miles), and weird races like the ones that go on for multiple days where you do rock climbing, horse back riding, along with running and other stuff.
November 2009 – did my first triathlon, the Turkey Tri organized by Shaun (the machine). It was a “splash” distance, meaning shorter than the shortest official triathlon distance, which is a “sprint”. 3 mile run, which that was the furthest I had ever done. 350 meter swim, which was ok since I had done some swimming the last 2 winters. And 10 mile bike ride on the road, I used my commuter bike and it performed great no big deal since I had been seriously mt biking for a couple of years.
March 2010 – ran my first half marathon. The Canyonlands Half Marathon.
April 2010 – did my first olympic distance triathlon. The Daybreak Triathlon. 1500 meter swim, 21 mile bike, and 10km run (6.2 miles)
October 2010 – ran my first marathon. The St. George Marathon.
And now Carol and I are having a baby so I’m not sure I’ll do my next goal of a half ironman: 2000 meter swim, 55 mile bike, and a half marathon (13.1 miles).
The weather was perfect and I felt really good about how I performed in the race. Not in the sense that I did it faster than last year (I was just one minute faster) but I did give it all. I felt a bit dizzy at the end of each leg and my legs cramped up a bit on the swim. Those are my indicators of a good race, it means I was really close to my limit.
What is the limit? To me it means where your body makes a clear indication that it cannot go further. My indicators are puking your guts out, having tunnel vision, or having an immobilizing cramp. These are the only indicators I trust since the mind can play games on you. If you reach the limit during the race, it means you’ll have a really tough time finishing. So I try to be close to it but never actually get there.
This race was the stepping stone of my master plan of merging two of my “worlds”. I’ve been running with some Neumont students and they saw some of my other training friends for the first time:
On the pic we’ve got Mark and Celeste (from neumont), then me, Nicholle, Duncan, Cody, and Jeff.
Daren was also there, he pushed me to the limits on the last half a mile of the run, that totally helped! You can see my pain face on this pic. That’s all Daren’s work right there, haha!:
Well, the race was a blast. It was a beautiful day to share with friends. I can’t wait for another race like this one!