Saturday, January 24, 2009

Wrapping it up....


The above pic is from Lake Tekapo, which is about half way between Wanaka and Christchurch, New Zealand. The church in the foreground is one of first in the area. In the background you have Lake Tekapo, which is a really deep shade of green, and the southern alps behind it. I had to wait a while to get this pic without tourists, but it was worth it. This pic is one of about 500 that I have taken, so look for a few more to be posted in the coming days.
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My time away from North American is quickly coming to a close and I have seen and learned a lot. The first 5 weeks were spent with Brett Sutton in the Philippines, then the next 8 were in Albury NSW, Australia training with friends and finally the last 2 were racing and training in New Zealand.
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The Philippines gave me a first hand look at what it is like to live in a 3rd world Asian country. I didn't particularly enjoy the living situation there, but it definitely gives you good perspective on how most people live in these countries. The training however, was great and I learned a lot from Brett.
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Next up was Albury, NSW Australia with 3 of my good triathlon friends, JD, Chris and Marilyn. McDonald. We trained pretty hard for 8 weeks and got to see a lot of the country....we did have our fun though.
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I ended the trip with 2 weeks in New Zealand. I started the Challenge Wanaka which is an iron distance race that is run very very well and it was hard to pass up being in town. I got to try a few new ideas in my racing and training and I made improvement...not having any trouble until 150-155km on the bike, which is about an hour past where I usually run into problems. Anyway, that is another blog...it is progress and I am happy with that.
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We ended with a week of traveling around and seeing the sights. We got to Queenstown, Mt. Cook, a few areas in between and then Christchurch. All fantastic places where I would like to come back to train in the near future.
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I now leave tomorrow (Monday) to head back to the states and catch up with family and friends. I have taken a bit of time off after this race to sort of 'reset.' I will have about 3 weeks in Wisconsin, before heading out west for 6-8 weeks getting ready for California 70.3 in Oceanside, CA.
More to come soon!!!
Cheers,
BB

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

A New Focus

Many of you have looked at my 2009 race schedule and asked if I have a new focus for the coming year. So I thought I would answer this one on my blog.

Ironman has been the primary focus of my racing since I have gotten into the sport. The challenge of racing all day and pushing your body over 8, 9 or 10 hours has become a passion of mine. But over the last few years, I have realized that my strength may be elsewhere in the sport...the 70.3 distance, or half ironman. Whether it be physical or physiological, I seem to go the best when racing for 4 hours.

I will still be racing Ironman Wisconsin in September, but until then my number one focus will be the half ironman distance. In addition to the half ironman, I will also be taking part in more short local events to help build up my top end.

I am very excited for the coming year and will post all the latest news on my blog. you can also visit my website regarding clinics and camps for the coming season.

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On another note, things are going very well here in OZ. But it is really starting to get heat up. It was well over 100* today and training in the afternoon can be tough. I love it here, but in some ways I will be glad to head to New Zealand next week to escape some of this heat.

After a few weeks there I will be flying back to the states, visiting briefly with friends and family in Wisconsin and then heading to Tucson for some early season N.A. racing and training.

Cheers,
Blake