Posts

Showing posts from 2007

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Image
I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. I hope 2008 is your best year yet!

Things are back on track in Madtown and I am getting ready to "fly"....ok, DRIVE south. I am leaving in 4 days to what feels like my second home in Clermont, FL. Thanks Graham and Stacy! I will be there for about 8-1o weeks, before heading west to Arizona for most of March and part of April.

On the training side, things are good..."WOW, seems like a while since I have said that!" :) I hit 77km of running last week, which felt great. Today marks 12 weeks since my stress fracture and I finally feel like I will soon be at 100%. All I have to say is I will be avoiding those at all costs in the future!

When I am down in FL, AZ & CA...I will keep everyone in the loop with regular training updates.

More to come from the Sunshine State!

BB

To Drill or To Drill It?

Image
We are now getting into the colder months here in the northern hemisphere, or what some call the "off season." It provides an opportunity to work on our weaknesses, which for a lot of us is swimming. Ok, that gets us to the next question; How do I improve my swimming? Do I just do drills? Do I swim long....or hard? Do I swim more frequently? Which one is it coach? You will talk to some who will tell you that swimming is 70%+ technique and 30% pure fitness, so most of your time should be spent perfecting your technique......ok.Then there are those that like the phrase "more is more." They will tell you that if you want to swim faster, you have to swim MORE. More meaning; longer, faster, more often.......okSo which one is it? BOTHI argue that to swim faster, you need to do both. You need to include drills at the beginning of your workouts, you need to swim hard during your main-sets and you need to swim more often.You hear it all the time: "The bes…

GOLFing in the Pool

Image
I am about 5 weeks into my swim block and am making some great progress. I will share some times and number in another week or two, but first I wanted to share a great drill that I have learned and seem results using(in both myself and my athletes). Over the course of the last 5 weeks I have learned a lot from those that have spent their entire lives in the pool. One "drill" or "game" that I have learned is called GOLF. No, there are no clubs or balls used in this game. It is easy, yet VERY effective. The goal is to swim fast with as few strokes as possible. The sets are usually made up of descending 50's. To get your score, you add the number of strokes it took you to complete the 50, to your time. For example, if you swam a 50 with 32 strokes in 40 seconds, your score would be 32 + 40, or 72. The purpose of this drill is to keep you "long" in your stroke. Most triathletes have a tendency to have a short choppy stroke(especially when swimming fa…
Image
Happy Thanksgiving!

Never did I think...

NEVER DID I THINK I would do 10k in the pool again after last winter. Let alone again this year. Well, a friend who swims masters in town told me that he and a group of swimmers were going to swim 10k this weekend. Since I am doing a swim focus, I was in. Following the workout, we had a potluck and some GOOD FOOD!

Instead of a boring 100x100 or something like that, everyone brought a 2k workout and then we picked sets to swim out of "a hat." Here was the resulting 10k workout. All intervals were 1:15 per 100 SCY + 10sec or faster. So 100's were on 1:25, 200's on 2:40, 300's on 3:55, 400's on 5:10, etc....

1200 mixed warm-up

Set #1 400, 2x200, 400p, 2x200p, 400

200 ez

Set #2 4 x (4x25,2x100), 3x100, 2x150, 2x200

200ez

Set #3 400, 3x100, 300, 3x100, 200, 3x100, 200

200 ez

Set #4 400, 300, 200, 100, 300, 200, 100, 200, 100, 100

200 ez

The brunch after included eggs, fruit, polenta, ham, muffins, milk, chili and there were even a few beers scattered around the table!

+++++++…
Image
This shoe may look familiar to some folks...or maybe not if you have never run in the Asics DS Trainer line. Anyway, this is next year's shoe(DS Trainer 13) that I have ordered from the UK. It should be here in a week and about 2 months before it is released in the US. The DS Trainer 12 seemed like a step down to me, Asics changed the overall "feel" of the shoe. It went from a shoe that felt like a racing shoes, so somewhat of a heavy trainer. The 2008 DS Trainer 13 is said to have a lot of the characteristics that were present in the older versions of the shoe. We will see and I will report my thoughts after a few k's in 'em.

++++++++++++++

In other news, I have decided that swimming makes you the most hungry out of any of the multisport disciplines. I have also decided that it is necessary to eat mass quantities of CHO all the time to swim fast.

I will be getting a few lessons in the pool this week, in an attempt to gain some more free speed.

Hope all is well....…

Can I grow gills?

I just wanted to post a quick update today. I am back to training, as of about 3 weeks ago and things are going well. I am slowly building my running, as I want to be careful that I am nothing below 100% come the new year.

I have a few focuses until then:

#1 I will be attempting to grow gills :) Well, maybe not...but I will be swimming like a swimmer until January. I will post some of the more notable sessions as I complete them. I am shooting to be able to hold 1:08 per 100y over a 1k TT.

#2 Boosting my FTP on the bike. My first field test gave me a NP of 338w for a 20min TT... My goal is to see if I can hit 350w by January.

#3 Build run volume through frequency. Nothing hard and nothing crazy long. Just consistent, steady running.

I hope everyone else is doing well and enjoying their Holiday's...if you are in Madison area, don't forget about my upcoming seminars at the Trek Bicycle Stores. The topics will include off season training mistakes and making the most out of training th…

An Early End

Hey All,

I hope that everyone is enjoying the last few warm fall days before all the leaves are gone and the snow starts to fly.

Unfortunately, I have some bad news to report. About two weeks ago I had a bit of pain that came on toward the end of a big training day. I did not think much of it at the time, but after a few days of things not getting better, I decided to see the doc. A bone scan revealed that I had developed a stress fracture in the head of my 3rd metatarsal on my left foot. As a result I will be forced to withdraw from Ironman Florida and start my off season early.

When I first got the news, I was pretty bummed out. My fitness was getting better and I had figured a few things out at IMWI that I was looking forward to applying down in FL.

However, maybe this short break will give my body a chance to absorb this last season a little bit better. Everyone needs a short break at the end of each season and I have a hard time taking one, unless I am forced to. In looking at the…

Ironman Wisconsin Race Report

2007 Ironman Wisconsin Race Report

Swim: 59:20 Bike: 5:18:14 Run: 3:12:59 Finish 9:38:15
15th Professional Male



Well, I had done 8 IM’s before this year’s Wisconsin and I had not made any significant progress in my running. So this year was a big step in the right direction for me. I had some really good things that came out of the day, as well as some learning experiences.

Race week was very boring and I was getting a big itch to race another IM. I even had a few butterflies. At the pro meeting we were told that we wouldn’t get wetsuits because we had a separate swim start and the water temperature was over 72*F. This was a pretty big surprise to everyone.

Race morning came and I went through my usual pre-race routine and before I knew it, I was in the water. I warmed up for a good 20min before the start and actually got cold, we all just tried to keep moving. We lined up and I started second row from the front. The horn went off and the swimmers that were around me, stayed…

2 Days

We are now two days out from the IMWI and the weather is looking great. Right now, the forecast is caling for a morning low of about 55* and a high of 77*. The wind direction has changed over the last few days, so we might not get that headwind I was hoping for in the last 25k of the ride.

Today is almost a total rest day for me. I will head to the pool for a little splash and that will be about it. Pro meeting is at 12:30 and then everyone at Timex is having lunch at 1.

Tomorrow is just an easy spin and trot off the bike. I have a Q&A at the expo for Timex at 2:00 and then will check my bike in after that. These last few days really fly by and it always helps to have everything ready to go well in advance. This is another huge benefit of being at home during race week.

The body is really starting to feel strong and I am anxious to race. Thank you to everyone that has sent me encouraging words and support.

This will be my last check in before Sunday. I am lucky #13 this yea…

10 Days

Well, I am now 10 days out from my next big "A" race and I am getting a little bored. I have taken care of almost everything that I needed to this week and am ready for race week already. Even though I think that body has no problem resting for a few extra days:)

I gave my last seminar of the season lastnight at the Trek Bike Store, here in Madison. The topic was Ironman Wisconsin (of course) and I had about 20-25 turn up. I get a lot of reward out of doing this type of stuff. I really felt like a lot of people will have a little less stress in this last 10 days because of the questions I was able to answer. We had A LOT of left over food, so we need more to show next time.

Today I had a track workout this morning and will be headed to the pool for a short swim in a little while. Hopefully the rain will clear for me ride this afternoon. I basically have 4 days of important training left after today. From then on in, it is time to watch a little more t.v., drink more …

Anyone up for a game of Packman?

THIS is how I am viewing Sept 9th. The last build has gone MUCH better than I expected and I feel like I am finally going to be able to show that I can contend...ESPECIALLY in my own backyard. I have spent the summer on this course and doing my research over every inch of it. I know exactly how to "play the game" depending on the conditions.

I have seen PR's across the board and feel that quiet confidence building as we get close to race day. Oh yeah and another small detail, I am finally HEALTHY ;)

Now I rest...2 weeks with a few hard key sessions and a lot of down time. Luis Vargas, my coach has been great in dealing with me and getting me ready for this day. From now on, it is "worry about only the controllables."

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I also want to pass along a HUGE congrat's to some of my friends that raced today. Chris McDonald won his first Ironman in Louisville today!! AWESOME job!! JD had a VERY solid day at Ironman Canada and so did Marilyn…
The Becker Buzz
August 19, 2007

"Pre Ironman Race Sandwich"

My last race seemed like an eternity ago and since then a lot has happened, so I thought I would update everyone as to what I have been up to as Ironman Wisconsin approaches. I have put all of my 'eggs' in the Ironman basket this year. My training called for me to hold back for a huge portion of the year, this was something that was new to me and was also something that proved to be move difficult than I thought. But my coach, Luis Vargas, assured me that there would be a time to go hard and that it would pay off.

Well that time came and we decided to insert two races into the schedule. The races were treated as HARD training sessions. They would follow a big training block and would be preceded by 3 easy days. Here is a results summary, with details below.


Iron Abe Olympic
July 29, 2007

Swim: 22:27 Bike: 56:58 Run: 36:46 Finish 1:57:22
2nd Overall
http://www.onlineraceresults.com/pdf/5997.pdf


Pleas…

Hard Work....DONE

Just a short note tonight.

Training has been rolling great over the last 6 weeks and I have really built a lot of fitness and have gotten lean, while still building a lot of strength.

I am now past the majority of the hard training and feel ready to go. I am happy, healthy, fit and confident. I will now try to get quiet over the next month to really dial in. I will check in every week or so with a few updates and thoughts.

I am racing this next Sunday at a competetive olympic distance race. Should be fun.

Have a great week.

Blake

Where I am at....

The last month has brough a lot of great things on the training front. I will give you a brief rundown.

After an ok race at Lake Stevens, I went right into a tough 2.5 week training block. It was mostly volume focused, but still had some top end work mixed in. This block a few great markers, one being a 20min TT where I was able to average 342 watts.

I then decided to race an Olypic Distance event down in IL. I will post a race report soon, but the race went well. I finished second to a guy that will be known by all soon. I was able to swim with the pack and then almost closed the gap to the front on the bike and averaged 302 watts for a ride of 56:58. This included a stop for a car that made a U-turn in front of me. On the run, I didn't have my top end there(probably from the volume), but still came across in 1:57:22.

This week I am back at it with 2 big days and 2 long runs. I have seen some real breakthroughs this week. Here are the details from two of my key days:

Wednes…

Rolling Along

There has been a lot of training talk as athletes get ready for their big late season races. In the past I might have tried to do what other athletes are doing or try some risky approach, but this year is different. I have a great coach and a program that I believe in.

Here is what I have done the past 7 days. I have built steadily over the last 8 weeks to this volume. In addition, I had another ride and run scheduled, but I had to move it to Sunday because of a wedding on Sat. This week finishes off this cycle. Next week I will race and then have a 3-4 week block that will be similar to what you see below, but with more intensity added in.

Day 1 - 8:25

Started off with a tough 5000 yd swim and then hopped directly on the bike for 132 mile ride in 6:42, all steady on a hot day. Mix of hills and rolling terrain, 30min run off the bike.

Day 2 - 3:01

3:01 Run, just under 25 miles total. Last 90min in the hills on pavement.

Day 3 - 5:05

Good swim of 4500 to start and then a solid 3:45 ride in …

Lake Stevens 70.3 Race Report

The Becker Buzz
July 8, 2007

Lake Stevens 70.3
Swim: 26:51 Bike: 2:21:20 Run: 1:21:17 Finish 4:11:36
10th Overall
I headed out to the Northwest on Thursday before the race to hopefully see a little bit of the course, as well as the beautiful scenery. The northwest is beautiful!! The city of Seattle itself is a bit crowded, but does have its draws. The city is comprised of “hills,” or neighborhoods that overlook various waterways and other geographical features. The backside of the neighborhood where I am staying has a view that will raise a few hairs on anyone’s neck. If you look to the left, you see Mt. Rainier. If you look right, you look across the Puget Sound at the Olympic Mountains. Definitely a “WOW” factor going on he…

Drawbridges, Evergreen Trees, Hills and Coffee Shops

The title of this blog comes from the three features of the Northwest landscape that I noticed the most. I am staying out in Seattle, WA for the Lake Stevens 70.3 race on Sunday. This is my first time out here and it is beeeeeautiful! I am staying with the family of a friend and they have been great in making me feel welcome in their home!

The landscape is covered with trees. Most of which, are tall evergreens that tower over the houses. In fact, there are so many that at times, you wouldn't even know you are in the middle of a major city.

I have only been here about 24hrs, but I thought I would give you an idea of what I have seen thus far. The area of town that I am in is VERY hilly. I am not talking about Midwest hills, I am talking about hills that are a half mile in length and have a grade of 20-25%. It is a good thing that it doesn't snow here very often, because you could not get around.

A few other unique features of the area include coffee Shops EVERYWHERE (yes …

Where is Blake????

I have been getting a number of emails asking what I have been up to and how things are going. So I thought I would post a short note letting everyone know that things couldn't be better!

I am into week 6 with my new coach Luis Vargas(http://www.luisvargas.com/) and things are going well. Things are pretty similar to what I had been doing in the past, but the structure is different to allow for better recovery.

Each week I have a HARD ride and run, while everything else is just steady(HR's of 143-163). This is actually more challenging than I thought it would be...especially when riding 130-150 miles or running 23-26 miles.

I have just finished up an 19 day block of about 85hrs total volume. 67k in the pool, about 1400km on the bike and about 240km of running. The volume and intensity left me pretty tired at some points, but by doing all the small things, my recovery has been great and I have been able to train hard day after day. I have also been using my morning HR and weight …

Rockman Race Report

Rockman Half Ironman June 10, 2007Swim: 28:22 • Bike: 2:16:03 • Run: 1:24:40 Finish: 4:11:39 • 1st Overall The Rockman Race Director, Chip Griffen, asked if I would like to come down for the weekend to race the inaugural Rockman Half Ironman in IL. The race sounded like it had potential to be a great one down the road, so I committed.
I have just joined up with a new coach, Luis Vargas (www.luisvargas.com), who works with Mark Allen at the www.markallenonline.com coaching website. After training with Luis for only 2 weeks, I really feel that he knows what my specific limiters are and how to improve them. I am very excited for Ironman Wisconsin on Sept. 9, knowing that I will be fully prepared to rip that race.
I made the trip down to Rockford on Friday to scout out the course and relax a little bit, thanks to the race management who put me up the host hotel for the weekend. I got in and was pleasantly surprised to find that my hotel room was upgraded to a suite because of overbooking. …

All that matters......

September 9, 2007

Becker Buzz' In Disney

Ford Ironman Florida 70.3 Race Report May 20, 2007 Swim: 28:38 Bike: 2:15:04 Run: 1:25:43 Finish: 4:12:55 18th Professional Male

Today I raced the 4th Anuual Ford Ironman Florida 70.3 Half Ironman at Disney World in Sunny Florida. I have done exactly 2 speed workouts in the last 8 weeks as I prepare for Ironman Coeur D’ Alene, and was just looking for a solid all around day against a world class field. That is exactly what I got. Temperatures were pretty moderate and the winds were not as strong as they could have been.

The gun went off at 6:20am and I found myself swimming pretty easy in a group…It was still fairly dark, so sighting was a bit tough and didn’t know if I was with who I wanted to be swimming with. I decided to just hold tight and see where it put me as things got sorted. Well, I rounded the second turn buoy as we headed back toward transition and I could see that the next group was not that far ahead, so I moved to the front of the pack and tried to bridge th…

Log May13

Today, I headed out for my longest run, 6 weeks out from CDA. 45* and pouring rain were not ideal conditions, but at least I didn't have to ride in it :)

For prep for CDA I have making sure to incorporate plenty of hills into both my cycle and run training. The UW Arboretum gives me the perfect opportunity to do this. On the road, it is a 10km loop that be extended any number of ways. If you want to run on the trails, the preserve is over 70 square miles that are laced with single-track trails. Need to run 2hrs? Don't want to run on the same trail twice? Not a problem here.

Anyway, for my long runs I usually carry gels and take them at a water fountain at about 7k into each loop, then take coke and water before starting the next one.

Today I extended the first 2 loops to 12.5k and then did a 10k+1km cd to finish. The goal was to run at least 2:#0 on the pavement. I really think that for me, having a few long runs on the pavement can be very beneficial(IF it doesn't i…

BUENO

This last week I have had some good sessions. Last Tuesday I had a great ride and after a recovery day on Wednesday I had a 20k interval run on Thursday that went extremely well, the mainset of the run was 800, 4x1600, 800 all at LT with 45sec recovery on the 800's and 90sec on the 1600's.

I decided to make sure my body was getting the most benefit from my training by taking a rest day on Friday. I had only one day completely off since I started training after Arizona(though I did have a few days of swimming only).

Today I hit it hard again. I started the day off with a 4k swim that included 3000 yds of LT swimming. The day was meant to simlulate race day stress, so I was on my bike within about 15min rolling over to the start of the Ironman Wisconsin course.

After a 20min warm-up, I went right into my mainset that I got from my good friend JD. 8x30min at ironman power on 5min easy spinning between. It went great, only problem was that my powertap cut out after the 3rd interval a…

May 7,8,9

After my big block, i followed it up with a day that included only 2500y of swimming, followed by a 5hr aerobic maintanence day on Monday.

Monday included a 5500yd swim, 64min 14k run, 30min of core work and a 2hr 61km ride.

Tuesday was a good day. Started out with a 3km swim that included a 2k mainset of 60x25 on 25sec, every other hard, the last 10 with pads. Then 500pull strong to finish it out.

Straight onto the bike where the idea was to warm-up and then ride 3:30 IM Race Simulation on the IMWI bike course. The weather was good. Low 80's and humid(for wisconsin) with light winds. I rode 10mi to the loop and then started and just pinned the HR in the low 140's and rode on feel for all the climbs. Nutrition was EXACTLY how I wanted on race day.

Though I don't have my PT for another week, i was very happy with the results. Almost 2 full 42mi loops, with the last one being about 1minute faster than the first. HR average on both was 143 and speed avgeraged out to 22.1mp…

Absorbing Your Training

There has been a lot of buzz revolving around "absorbing your training." It seems that is use to be train BIG, recover, train BIGGER, recover, etc. Then it seemed as though it went to train consistently and people focused soley on that.

Now there is a new buzz around town. Train consistently and train as big as you can and still absorb what you are doing. So what does "absorbing" mean? Well, I believe it means going from one training block to the next without compromising the quality of the training.

I believe that focusing on absorbing your training will also help you avoid injury and stay mentally sharp.

+++++++++++++++++

Ok, so I do think that there is place for overload. Like this past week. I trained all winter and mspring at moderate volume with intensity ranging from steady to vo2. Then I raced, then recovered. I felt that my body was use to the usual training, so I decided to go a different route. I wanted to spend 1 -2 weeks in the hills(both ridi…

Day 1 & Day 2

Day 1 - 5:31

Started out well with a 5.1km swim as a part of a 30th birthday swim set of 30x200 for my good friend Cindi Bannink. I got in a bit late and only got in 5.1km in about 1:15 swim time.

Late morning steady run in the hills of 1:30 and 20km. Some moderate efforts on the ups, but just steady on the flats in the UW Arb.

30min afternoon core session.

Late afternoon ride of 2:16 in the hills. 90min at IM effort mixed in. Total distance was 71 km.

++++++++++++++++

Day 2 - 7:24

Started early with an 8km easy run in 36:20.

Hopped on the bike for a long day in the saddle. The goal for the day was to climb as much as possible in zones 3 & 4. I managed somewhere just over 10,000ft of climbing. 6:14 ride time and 205km.

Run off the bike at pace, 33:50 run for 8km, HR 150. Felt good.

Epic?????

Well, the two week 'recovery' period following IMAZ is over and even though I cycled quite a bit in the last 8 days, I feel good physically and 'nice n hungry mentally.

Ended last week with two solid rides:

Friday included:

60min 3500yd swim with a solid mainset of 400s 90% effort on 5:20(4:48), 200 easy, 600 70% effort(7:40), 200 easy, 400 90% effort(4:49), 200 easy, 500 TT (5:45). I was really happy with the 5:$5 b/c the truth was that I was not feeling that great in the water and still pulled off a good time.

3:50 ride, solid on all climbs, 120km total with ALOT of climbing.

Run of 52min and 11 km in the evening.

Saturday was easy with a 48min 10k run in the morning before heading up north for some pre-wedding festivities with a good friend from college.

I got back just in time on Sunday to head out(quite tired) for a 3:32 ride, I rode the ups at HIM effort and steady on the flats. Really windy. 113km total.

+++++++++++++++

This week marks the start of a two week Epic trainin…

Getting moving again

Well, recovery has been a little slow from travel and a few beers here and there, but I am starting to feel normal again. Feet are getting better each day and I can SBR with no issues. I will write a bit more in the week to come, but for now I will catch you up on training this past week.

Monday:

Swim 2.5k all easy in the pool Foot hurt for this one.

Run 37min and 8km easy, in the arb. good to be out there.

Bike 2:35 and 75km, easy in the hills

Tuesday:

Bike: 3:17 95km easy with some steady in the hills with Boulder J(now a madcity resident)

Strength 20min

Wednesday:

Swim 45min and 2.5km mostly easy with 10x100 on faster 100's mixed in

Run 48min and 10k mostly easy in the arb, gd!


Thursday(Crappy day out there today, 40* and rain):

Run 1:29 and 20km easy for 30min, then 60min of steady mixed with IM effort. Pouring!

Swim: 56min and 3200 yds, 600s,2x300 pull,6x100 mod on 1:30, 400s, 2x200p, 4x100 mod on 1:30, then cd

++++++++++++++++++++=

The idea behind this week is to take it easy and just …

The Old Stomping Ground

This last week has been a whirlwind and it has dropped me back in Madtown, also known as my own stomping ground. There is something about riding where you grew up that is very relaxing.

After the race, I flew back to Clermont on Tuesday with my cankles...I seriously looked like I had clubbed-feet. I hung out with a few friends on Wednesday night and then shoved off in the 'soccar-mom mini van' early(3:45am) Thursday morning. My original plan was drive for about 12 hours and then stay the night somewhere in TN or KY, but at the 12 mark I was in a zone and decided that I could make it one straight shot.

After a little construction and a "short cut" that wasn't so short, I arrived a little over 20hrs later in Madtown.

I have slowly been getting back into things, but recovery is just starting to come around. Plane rides across the country and 20hr road trips are not condusive to reducing foot inflamation.

This morning I recarpeted my parents screen porch...a simple …

The Becker Buzz...

“A Step In The Right Direction”

2007 Ironman Arizona Race Report

Swim: 54:58 Bike: 5:13:25 Run: 3:38:38 Finish 9:53:12
19th Professional Male

After the race this year I was chatting with my good friend Graham Partain. He and his wife have put up with me training out of their house for the last 3 months and both of them are some of the most giving people that I have ever met. I was going over the race with him and told him that there were a few things that I was happy with, but that overall I was a bit disappointed. He simply said; look at the positives, “it is a step in the right direction and this is just the beginning.”

My last build going into the race was not ideal, but I was optimistic heading into the race. I had some soft tissue stuff going on that compromised my run training. As a result I swam and cycled more, hoping it would help to make up for the lost miles.

Then Tuesday of race week came around and I developed what started out as mild tooth p…

A Roller Coaster Ride - April 11 & 12

I will bring you up to speed on what has gone on over the last few days. I awoke with a tooth ache about 4 days ago. At first I didn't think much of it(didn't even mention it in my blog), but it progressively got worse each day.

I will spare you the details, but in short I have an old root canal that has become infected. It has caused swelling, stiffness and tear-filled pain. Yesterday I was thinking of pulling the plug on the race. I couldn't lay down, let alone race. I called my dentist and she prescribed some antibiotics. The prescription meds along with A LOT of IBProfin and some pushing on my tooth has forced the fluid out and relieved the pressure.

The result is that today I am feeling much better. Still stiff, but things are looking great for feeling good on Sunday morning. I will keep you posted.

+++++++++++++++

Ok, today was the first day of Ironman Expo and there were fit people everywhere.

The water is perfect for my Helix Fullsuit, the temp is about 69*. I really li…

The Gremlin, "That Guy," and "Hey Russ..."

Image
Meet Harry...Harry looks like a gremlin, but is the hairless cat that lives here at my homestay with Russ and Julie. He is a 'trip.' Sometimes, hairy gets angry(as you can see). He is more like a dog. He fetches, drinks by dipping his paws in water, then licks them, he leaves his toys in his water dish and likes people food. Crazy cat, a lot of personality.

Well, race week is finally here. It seems like I was waiting, waiting, waiting for it to get here and now it is flying by. Tuesday is almost done. I guess that is how most things go. Like vacations. Everyone always looks forward to a vacation and it seems like such a long wait, then before you know it, it is here and gone and you are back at work.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++While I have been staying here, I have been swimming at the ASU pool. Very nice! Now, if you saw the pool you might say "WTH, this pool is somewhat dirty, the lawn-chairs are from the 70's and there is no music. Seems pretty average. Now, check out…

Happy Easter Apr 8 & 9

Sunday April 9 Easter

Well, no chocolate bunnies this year....but I had my last "training day" before IMAZ.

Ride 2:45 on the course. 94km Rode 20min easy and then 30min at 260w, 30min at 230w, 30min at 250w and then 40min at 230w. I learned a lot today about the wind on the course and to expect it to change throughout the ride.

For example. On the first loop I had a head wind and averaged about 35kph up to the turn. On the second time around I had a tail wind and averaged 39kph uphill at 10 less watts. Speeds on the descent were slower on the second loop because of the wind. I will make sure that I have some left in the tank after 150k of riding.

Run off the bike of 22min and 5km all at IM pace. Felt good, HOT. Lower leg was tight for about the first 50m of the run, the n good.

Afternoon swim with Russ...really tired so i kept it easy. 60min and 3000m (3300 yds). Good stretching later in the day and done.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Saturday Apr 7

Swim 45min at 2500 yds

R…

Catching Up Apr 1-6

Ok, I know I haven't writtetn in a while, but things have been crazy. I will try my best to get you up to speed. I traveled to San Diego for the Timex Team Camp. GREAT TIME! I love the team and everyone that is related to it. Ben, our team manager did a great job in his first year putting the camp together. Nice Job!

Each day we got presentations from all of our sponsors...of which I will name a few. Blue Seventy has an updated cuff for the 2007 Helix wetsuit. It solves the issues with leaky sleeves. They are by far the more versitile wetsuit that I have tried. Keep your eyes open for something special regarding next year.

The TTX frames...well, I have already told you how fast they are...seriously though, they are much more stiff than anything carbon that I have ever been on. Perfect for the IMAZ course.

Spenco is a sponsor that makes insoles for shoes and cycling gloves. I am helping them with their launch of the "Rip-It" triathlon specific gloves. More to come soon. Thei…

Mar 31 - Travel

Saturday Mar 31

Ahhh the airport...I am writing this blog from the Orlando Airport Terminal, I have about an hour until my flight leaves. Note to self, hang out in the Continental Gate, the internet is free. I don't know if it is at everywhere, but I hope that I have it in Houston, which is where my lay-over is, because I would like to follow the race out in Cali via the net.

I am excited to head to San Diego for a few reasons. First, I have never been there. It is the 'other' triathlon mecca, the other being Boulder. I don't think that I will get a chance to see much when I am there, but I am anxious to go either way.

Secondly, I am looking forward to team camp. Once a season, the entire Timex Team has a camp somewhere around the country. This year the camp is at the awesome palisades Resort in S.D. We get a chance to get to know everyone on the team, a chance to met representatives from all of our sponsors for the year, as well as time to just relax.

Having "a team&…

Mar 29 & 30 Here we go...

Friday Mar 30

Well, looking back on my 2004 log (which is partly what I am using for this build), I saw that this weekend's key session is the one where I should see higher numbers...well, I did!

Here they are for your enjoyment:

The day started out with a 4250y swim in 1:02. 2500 mod. straight to start. Then 5x200p mod-hard on 2:40(all were 2:25-30). Then 5x100 build by 25 to all hard by the end. Then I finished with 250k mod-hard.

Straight onto the bike. 15min easy, then the following set:

60min 230 target: 235w - HR 138
10min easy
45min 240 target: 240w - HR 143
10min easy
30min 260 target: 261w - HR 151
10min easy
15min 315 target: 318w - HR 172 - Highest I have seen in a while. (Cherry lake Road)

Finished steady, total ride of 3:31 and 121 km.

Run off the bike of 5km, avg 6:52 pace with HR of 140-45.

Massage at 3 and then packing for the rest of the day. I fly out tomorrow morning for the Timex Team Camp and will then spend the last 10 days in Tempe putting in my final preparations on the …

Mar 28

Wednesday Mar 28

Today I had another good day...that almost wasn't. The swim was the highlight, so I will start there. I was SOOOO tired this afternoon, even after a 90min nap, that I almost didn't make it to the pool. Well, I finally made it there at about 4:30. Here was the swim, maybe the best times that I have seen thus far in this build. Funny how things work sometimes.

Warm-up: 600 mixed, 600 d/s

Mainset:

800p strong on 11:00 (9:48)
100 easy
4x400 swim hard on 5:30 (4:48,4:49)
100 easy
2x200 pull strong on 3:00 (2:14, 2:16)
100 easy
4x100 swim on 1:15 (1:09,1:11,1:10,1:12)

CD to 4k.


Morning was a good also. Last long run of the build. 1:45 total time and 24km. Here was the outline...all on the treamill. HR's were really high for me today...dehydration, tired...not sure. It was hot on the treadmill, no fans in there.

25min wu build to IM pace.

Then 5x through:
10min at IM 6:53 pace (150, 153, 153, 157, 156)
2min at HIM 6:00 pace (166, 167, 168, 168, 171)
3mi…

Mar 27

Tuesday Mar 27

Good day today.

Swim first at Lake Louisa with Natasha. 50min total time, about 3000 yds. 10min wu, then 8x100 strokes(about 150 m) hard with swim back recovery. Cooldown after...no gator sightings.

Directly onto the bike. 30min wu into

2 x 10:00 at IM effort with 5:00 recovery

2 x 5:00 at HIM effort with 2:30 recovery

4 x 2:30 at 40k effort wtih 1:30 recovery


Here is the data:

10:00 intervals : (#1 237w, #2 249w)

5:00 intervals : (#1 278w, #2 277w)

2:30 intervals : (#1 289w, #2 299w, #3 295w, #4 295w)

The data is not all that consistent because of the rolling hills and turns in the park. Had to do a few U-turns, etc. Happy about the ability to raise my HR.

Total ride was 1:40 and 51 km

Run off the bike of 6km and 22min. 800 hard off the bike HARD, then easy for 400, then IM pace to 5km. Ran well today on the roads. Exactly 6:52 per mile pace.

Massage with MONA.....finally she is back! In Clermont I have Mona, in Boulder I have Nikki and in Madison, I have Cindi. Thanks to …

Mar 25 & 26

Monday Mar 26

Early run of 40min and 8 km easy steady on the path around Lake Minneola. Felt good.

Swim with Natasha at the NTC 1:21 and 4800 yds.

1k wu mixed with a few drills
8x50 on 2 patterns of 4. 3,6,12,all hard with cruise 25 for recovery

Mainset:
3x (400pull mod-hard on 5:30, 4x150 HARD on 2:30)

#1 400(5:04), 150's (1:51,1:49,1:49,1:48)
#2 400(4:58), 150's (1:50, 1:48, 1:47, 1:45)
#3 400(500), 150's (1:50, 1:46, 1:44, 1:44)

Easy cd. Very happy with the 150's hard, but comfortable swimming in that zone.

Afternoon ride that was HOT and WINDY. Very exciting route today (Very sarcastic). 561 to 33 to Green Pond Rd to Van Fleet and Back Bay Lake, Lake Erie). Ride was 2:48 and 88km. All easy/steady.

+++++++++++++++++++++

Sunday Mar 25 (3 weeks out)

Very tired and hungry today. Managed 2000 LCM (2200 yds). Too shelled even to do a longer float swim. 45min total.

Long nap in the afternoon and lots of water helped. Calf is tight, so recovery day is welcomed.

3 weeks to go from toda…

Mar 23 & 24

Saturday Mar 24 - Last Race Sim

Morning swim of 3.8km LCM in 57min (4250 yds)

500 EZ mixed in wetsuit.

2500 Timed in wetsuit(HOOOOOT)
1500 in 19:54
2000 in 26:27
2500 in 33:01

8x100 pull with pads on 1:30 (1:24-6)

Simulated race transition and out to ride. Total ride was 4:38 and 153 km

40min EZ to steady
40min build to IM effort
40min @ 250 target (HR 143)
15min EZ
45min as 3x(12IM/3HIM) target was 240/270
15min EZ
40min @ 250 target
10min EZ
build to HIM watts home

Right onto the treadmill with cal bottle, coke and water.

Run was 10k as 5x1mile with 15s recovery to get in cals.

#1 - 7:21 - HR 126 EZ
#2 - 6:48 - HR 136 Build to pace
#3 - 6:39 - HR 139 Pace
#4 - 6:39 - HR 143 Pace
#5 - 6:39 - HR 145 Pace
Cooldown

Good stretch after and some stength stuff later in the evening. about 7hrs total for the day.

+++++++++++++++++++++

Friday Mar 23

Open water swim in the am 1:05 and 4500 yds mix of easy building to hard.
(5000 total for day)

Set was 10strokes hard, 10 EZ, 20h/200ez, 40h/40…

Mar 21 & 22

Thursday Mar 22 - Back at the track

Today was a good day. I got back on the track...first time in 2 weeks and I have confirmed a few things. I lost nothing and my taper is starting to build.

Rode over to the track on the bike, 45min and 20km wu, then warmed up for 3.6k building to AT and then LT over the last 200. Did 400 broken 50 strides, 50 walk, 4 times through.

This workout is great for IM athletes. The 600's help teach you to hold back and patience. The effort required to run a 600 at AT after running an 800 at LT is very little. Much the same as the first part of the marathon, it is VERY easy to go to hard.

I checked HR, but wanted to go by feel...good for race day. It was hot at the track, 80* and sun, so you can see the HR drift. But I was really stoked to see what without seeing splits as I went, the times were within a second or two of each other with one or two exceptions. Here is the data

Then 4 x 2400 as outlined

600 @ AT
100 EZ
800 @ LT
200 EZ
600 @ AT
100 EZ

#1

600 - 2…

Mar 19 & 20

Tuesday Mar 20

Well, after my ART apt yesterday, I decided to head out for my first 'long' run since I pinched the nerve in my ankle. I had sushi lastnight with Natasha, Graham, Stacy, Gavin and Kimberly...and I thought it would be the perfect pre-long run food. Actually turned out to be awesome! Maybe a regular thing????? We'll see.

Anyway, the plan was 30km out at the clay trail. 15min warm-up, 1:45 at IM effort and then 15min cd.

The run went great. I lifted my arch up in my shoe and am running with more of a forefoot strike...this takes a lot of pressure off of both my ankles and my quads. My calfs did pay the price a little bit in the last 20min. Not terrible tho.

I now feel that I have the confidence back for my run to be ok on race day. I will shut it down now, with a few key runs here and there before race day.

Today's sessions:

Run 2:15 30km
Swim 20min 800 yds, mostly kick to get the junk out.

Erin Kummer, an athlete also racing on Timex is in town for a few nights. I…