Thursday, April 30, 2009

Training on 4/29 and 4/30

Hello dear readers!

Last few days workouts went pretty well. Yesterday I rode 30 miles in heart rate zone 2 and felt pretty good. Averaging a little under 20 mph. Still dealing with strong winds. Tried a little bit of an alternative to my regular fueling strategy. Kevin suggested that I drink larger amounts of liquid in longer intervals. Normally I try to drink ever 10 to 15 minutes. But this has made my stomach not able to tolerate much nutrition at one time. So now I am drinking half a bottle of water or Gatorade every 30 minutes. Definitely was able to consume more. We'll see how this works on my longer rides.

Today I did my 6 mile run with a 2 mile time trial built in. This workout was done on a track at the nearby high school. This is how it works:

First two miles are run at an easy pace and then I stopped, stretched for a bit and hydrated. The next two miles were at 100% effort. I started out going way too fast (5 minute mile pace) and basically bonked from there. Two miles was done in a little under 15 minutes with my heart rate reaching 179 bpm max. Speaking with Kevin this evening he said that two things were working against me. Firstly, it was a lot hotter today than the last time trial I did. Secondly, I need to not go so fast coming out of the gate. Keeping a consistent pace is something I really am working on and it is getting better. So we will work on running much more evenly next month's time trial.

I heard back from the Ultraman organization today. Unfortunately the race is currently full and Jane (one of the director's of the race) said that she knows people with Crohn's disease and it would be good to have a representative at Ultraman to raise awareness as well as support for the CCFA.

Hopefully things may change and I can still participate, but right now it doesn't look good. So after Ironman Lake Placid I will have to see what other races I can do to end the year. I may do the Great Floridian again. I want to break the 13 hour barrier this year if I do. Who knows, I might even be able to get in closer to 12!

That's all for now.

Tri your best!


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Training on 4/28

Hello readers!


Tuesday was a great day for training. I did a bike trainer run combination session. Spent one hour with the trainer doing the assigned drills at a high cadence and heart rate. Kevin (my coach) keeps my sessions very interesting and tough. As soon as I finished the ride, I immediately did a 4 mile run at a slightly faster pace than I was supposed to. I love these workouts because they are not too long but still intense. I always feel great afterwords.


I had a conversation today with a woman who is also a member of the local triathlon club. Her son suffers from Crohn's disease. This is the same disease as Ulcerative Colitis, but rather than affecting the lower intestine (like me), it affects the small intestine.

I gave her some encouragement and ideas of what made me have flare ups of the condition and how I handled them. I also gave her the number of my Gastroenterologist. Her son is at college now, but when he gets home, I plan on having a talk with him to make sure he knows that he is not alone in his misery.

That's the bad thing about this disease. No one really wants to talk about their "tummy issues" and as a result you feel isolated. If you have someone you can talk to, it helps a lot.

Well, that's it for now.

Tri your best,


Monday, April 27, 2009

Workouts from 4/26 and 4/27

Hi Everyone,

Last week continued to be an intensive training week. I was pretty wiped from yesterdays workout and didn't have time to blog. But here are the details:

Sunday's Workout

Rode 90 miles in Heart rate zone 2- low 3. That means I kept my heart rate between 130 and 140 the whole time. There was more wind than usual and this made the ride especially hard. I saw on the weather channel that there were 30 MPH gusts. No wonder I felt like I wasn't moving! I averaged 18.75 mph according to the bike computer. Not too bad considering the wind.

When I got home from the bike ride I immediately headed out on a 3 mile run. This is to train my body to be prepared for the transition from biking to running. I ran it at a 10 minute per mile pace so it was pretty easy and I think I actually ended up averaging a slightly faster pace than that according to the gps.

Today's Workout

Today I swam 2500 meters. Had a 500 meter warm up then did 5 sets of 300 meters at a hard pace with 30 seconds rest in between. I cooled down with 50 meters kick drill followed by 400 meters with the pull buoy and then another 50 meter kick drill.

This week I actually get a day off on Friday! Of course I have some intense workouts coming up, so hopefully I can force myself to get to bed at decent hours in the evenings.

That's all for now!

Tri your best,


Saturday, April 25, 2009

Ironman Training 4/25/09

Hi Everyone,

Today was a good training day. I ran 15 miles at the assigned 10:10 minute per mile pace. My coach has me doing my long runs extra slow for base endurance building. It feels like I am not moving at this speed, but by mile 12 you are still feeling it!

Heart rate seemed a little high today (was in the high 140's to low 150's). I suspect that was because of my lack of sleep the last few days. I had a business trip that lasted from Wednesday to Friday. I was supposed to come home on Thursday but my flight got diverted and I was stranded in Atlanta all night.

I have been getting a few questions lately about pain management (or rather avoiding the pain in the first place) while training. I can tell you all from personal experience that the following things work for me:

1. Stretch every night. Especially the hamstring, calves and the IT Band.
2. Make sure you are running loose. This was a common mistake I made earlier in my Triathlon exploits. After having some bad knee injuries (see earlier blog posts), my rehab guy taught me the right stretches to do. Remember it is not good to do too much stretching before you muscles are warmed up. It's better to stretch later.
3. Find a good running gate that works for you. This is another thing that I have been working on that has helped with injury and the ability to go long distances. You don't want to plant your foot too far ahead of your center of gravity. This actually slows you down as well as places tremendous forces on your joints with the braking motion it causes.
4. Wear the right type of shoes for your feet. I am an overpronator, so I need motion control shoes that keep my arches in place. This has helped a lot with the knee situation as well. You can go to a good running shoe store and have them evaluate your pronation and recommend the right type of shoes.

Well that is pretty much it for now. More tomorrow after I have my long bike/run brick workout.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Lake Placid Ironman Training and Other Updates

Hi Everyone,


Phew! It's been a busy week (thanks Kevin!). Lots of training with few days off. I've been adjust well to my new coaches training plan. Even though there are many days where I work out more than once, I can really feel the benefits. Sunday I did a 70 mile ride and immediately followed that with a three mile transition run.

I am really working on my racing nutrition plan and figuring out what works best for me. this Saturday I am attending a seminar for race nutrition and hope to learn quite a bit from there.


Fundraising for the CCFA has been going really slow (damn you economy!). I had a few meetings with some Gastroenterologists and they went pretty well. Hopefully they will get on the bandwagon.

Bike Equipment

Oh my aching butt! I bought a nice adamo saddle a while back. I got caught up in the whole "this is what professional triathletes use" marketing. Unfortunately, the seat hit all my pressure points and made it really painful to ride for long periods. So the bike is in the shop now for maintenance and seat replacement. Going back to the gel seat I had on my old bike.

Question for My Readers

How would everyone like to see my daily workout results? I am thinking about doing daily logs of my workouts which would include heart rate, speed and gps information. Any interest?

That's all for now.

Tri your best,


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Photos from the Lonestar Triathlon Posted

Hi Everyone,

Just wanted all to know that I received my pictures from the Lonestar Triathlon. They can be found in the gallery section of my website at

Had a brick workout today with a 20 mile bike ride with single leg drills followed by a 4 mile run.

It was a tough workout but I felt great afterword.

That's all for now.

Tri your best and have a good one,


VO2 Official Results and Heart Rate Zones

Hi Everyone,

Well my recovery from the Lonestar Triathlon has gone very well. Went right back into the thick of things and the mileage is already increasing in preparation for the Ironman Lake Placid race. In a previous blog entry I wrote about my VO2 test. Here are those results:

Peak VO2 = 59.6
Calories per hour @ Peak = 1460
Aerobic Threshold = 112bpm
VO2 @ Aerobic Threshold = 32.7
Calories per hour @AeT = 802

I can use this data to plan my racing caloric intake and keep my heart rate in the proper zones so that I do not burn out by the time I get to the Marathon portion of the race. Note that my Peak VO2 is 59.6. This is considered a very good number for someone my age.

Now that we have this data, my heart rate zones are as follows:

Lactate Threshold Heart Rate: 158

Zone 1: Recovery 0 * - 126
Zone 2: Aerobic 127 * - 140
Zone 3: Tempo 141 * - 146
Zone 4: SubThreshold 147 * - 157
Zone 5A: SuperThreshold 158 * - 160
Zone 5B: Aerobic Capacity 161 * - 166
Zone 5C: Anaerobic Capacity 167 * - and over

These zones will be used in my training to keep me at the right intensity levels for the current task at hand (endurance building, power training, etc.).

That's all for now.

Tri your best,


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Lonestar GPS Data

Hi Everyone!

I thought everyone would get a kick seeing my GPS data from the race last weekend. Below are screen shots of the data. On the right is the satellite view of my movement and to the left is the data from the GPS summarized. Note that these devices aren't exactly perfect so the distances and speeds don't necessarily correspond to the actual distances measured by the race officials.

The Swim (Click image to make it bigger!)

This is interesting because it shows my problems of swimming in a straight line. I am sure I added lots of distance to the swim with my cork-screw path!

The Bike (Click image to make it bigger!)

This one is pretty straightforward. I officially clocked in at just under 22 mph. Though the GPS had me going a little slower.

The Run (Click image to make it bigger!)

Again GPS data is a little off compared to the actual distances and times, but it is still a great device to use to make sure I am running a consistent pace.

That's all for now.

Tri your best,


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Lonestar Triathlon Results

Hi Everyone,

Well I did my first race of this season today. It was a 1/2 Ironman held in Galveston Texas. That's 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run. I definitely think my performances are improving. Although i have to say I definitely still have room for improvement.

The Swim

I wore my new wetsuit and it performed beautifully! I swam a 2:02 / 100 meter pace for the distance. Not too bad, but I know I can do better. I still have the zig zag issue but it wasn't as bad as it has been in the past. I exited the swim in 39 minutes.

The Bike

Now the bike I did really well. I rode my new Quintana Roo carbon frame and even though there was a really big head wind, I averaged almost 22 mph the whole time. I was really pleased. I finished the 56 miles in 2hours 35 minutes.

The Run

Oh boy, my Achilles heel. While I did better for this run than others in the past, I was still a little disappointed. The run consisted of 4 loops. The first loop went really well and I was running at the pace I was hoping (about a 8 minute mile), but then I just really didn't have anything left. My left hip was aching a little and I just sort of hobbled along at a much slower pace. Then a funny thing happened, as I was round the corner for my last lap, my wife Denise surprised me by coming to the race to see me finish! I guess I still had a lot left in the tank because that last lap was my fasted lap. Overall, I averaged about a 10 minute per mile pace and finished in 2 hours 13 minutes.

So now I am home and trying to rehydrate and rest. Fortunately, my coach gave me tomorrow off and I don't start training for my next event till Tuesday. I will post my race pictures once they become available.

Below are my official stats:

Clock Time 5:35:01
Chip Time 5:35:01
Overall Place 245 / 609
Gender Place 203 / 413
Division Place 47 / 85
1 2Mi Swi Rank 273
1 2Mi Swi Time 39:09
1 2Mi Swi Pace 2:02/M
T1 Time 03:42
56Mi Bike Rank 154
56Mi Bike Time 2:35:24
56Mi Bike Pace 21.6mph
T2 Time 03:11
13 1Mi Run Rank 346
13 1Mi Run Time 2:13:33
13 1Mi Run Pace 10:12/M

Thanks everyone for all the words of encouragement! That's all for now.

Tri your best,


Saturday, April 4, 2009

Lone Star Half Ironman Tomorrow

Hi Everyone,

I had a busy day today. In the spirit of giving back, I volunteered for the sprint triathlon race today (Saturday, April 4th). Spent about 6 hours on my feet. Hind sight being 20/20, this was probably a bad move since my half is tomorrow.

I did get home and got a couple hour nap. I am about to go to bed and hopefully I will get at least 5-6 hours sleep.

Go to and you can see live coverage of the event!

I feel like I have trained well for this event. Hopefully I won't have a mechanical issue tomorrow.

I'll post a race report as soon as I am recovered. Wish me luck!

Tri your best,


Thursday, April 2, 2009

VO2 Testing and Race Preparation

Hi Everyone,

This week has been a little busy for me. I had my VO2 test done on Monday. For those not familiar with this it is a test to determine the maximal oxygen consumption, maximal oxygen uptake or aerobic capacity my body can transport and utilize during incremental exercise. This then reflects my physical fitness. The name is derived from V - volume per time, O2 - oxygen, max - maximum.

My coach can use these results to define my heart rate zones for training. I'll do a separate blog entry for that later. I haven't gotten my results yet, but will post when I do.

This test was very weird for me because you have to place a mask over your face the whole time they are testing you. This is done to measure the gases going in and out of my lungs during exercise.

Problem is, I felt like I was suffocating! It was really hard to force air in and out. To understand what it felt like, take a few straw and try to breath through them only while running really hard. Here is a picture of me in the contraption:

The tester (who was a really nice lady), said I did really well for my first time. She said it is common for people to be freaked out when they realize their airway is restricted. She said when we do the test again, I'll know what to expect and then I'll do better.


I did my last taper run for the Lonestar Half Ironman this Sunday. Did 4 miles at a easy 10 minute pace. Tomorrow I'll do a 4-6 mile bike ride to make sure there isn't anything wrong with the equipment (shifting, etc.).

That's all for now.

Tri your best,