Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Spirit Of Racine Race Report


If there is one thing that I have realized this year, it's that I race best when I don't think about much of anything race related. I have done this long enough, that I know what i need to do. I just take the fitness I have and use it. The rest takes care of itself.

The 2009 Spirit of Racine Half Ironman was no exception. I registered the day before and then stayed with my mom and grandma, about an hour away in Milwaukee. I got grandma's cooking the night before, including way too many mashed potato's!! Well what else am I suppose to do when she shoves the pan in your face and says; "Here, you finish these up. You need them and no one else will eat them!" Then came the apple/walnut bake....I was fueled, there was no doubt about that ;)

Race morning, I followed my pattern of not over thinking. I rolled into transition 10 minutes before it closed. Dropped my stuff, got body marked, hit a pit stop and headed up the beach for the point to point swim start. Worked well for my warm-up. 1/2 mile fast walk, then 1/2 mile swim to warm-up.

Swim went well, we had a nice current to push us, which made the times very quick. I was 4th out, but in the front group. Then had a quick transition and was onto the bike in first. Legs were there from the start and I targeted my goal wattage of 310-320. Then came the pot-hole. WHAM! seat dropped 3" and I looked (and felt) like I was in the circus. I originally thought I could ride like this, but then my back started to hurt and hamstring started to yell.

I spent the next 30minutes trying to get the attention of the lead vehicle and motorcycle. Eventually, I was able to get some tools, about 45minutes later. A big thank you to the officer on the motorcycle. I stopped and fixed it and was back on, riding well.

Ride was uneventful, until i again hit a pothole with a few miles to go and the seat fell again! I sure hope the roads get paved next year!!

I started the run with 233 on the clock and knew that I all had to do was run steady and i would be well within my goal of going sub 4. In short, I ran 10 miles at IM pace and then ran hard the last 3 miles...i find this is a good measure of my run strength. Splits for these were 5:45, 5:49, 5:46, so all points to being on the right track for IM in about 7 weeks!

I crossed in 3:54:04 and got my 3rd win of the season. I will now start IM preps for IMWI in September!

Thank you to Timex, Trek, KSwiss, friends, family and all of my other supporters out there.

Results can be found over at www.spiritofracinetri.com

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Breakthrough!!!

3:54:04!!

Spirit Of Racine Half Ironman race report to come!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

If You Listen, It Will Come

Besides playing off of the awesome movie "Field Of Dreams," what am I talking about? I am talking about listening to your body when training! Many of us become so wrapped up in our training plans that we forget about the most important aspect of training and performance. That is, How we are feeling and how the body is working!

We feel the need to hit every single yard, minute, heart beat, watt and interval...we become obsessed with going as good, if not better, every time out the door. When we do this, we almost always self destruct and become frustrated.

Regardless of which training protocol you are following, what your performance management chart says, what you think you "should" be able to do on a given day, you have to remember that we are not machines. Training is a small piece of the the total amount of stress that we place on our bodies in life. In many ways our bodies do not differentiate between training stress and work stress, or family stress.

These outside stressors like work, family, sleep quality, etc. cannot be measured. For this reason, we have to be flexible when it comes to our training. If you are suppose to do a workout one day and there are signs that you are already over reached, you may need to change or eliminate the sesssion. This is NOT a bad thing, you are not failing because you didn't execute every single detail of the training plan...you are simply being smart and listening to your body.

When you do listen, your best performance will most likely always follow!

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

Injury Rehab

I also have a few athletes that are coming back from injuries of the past. Many of them want to feel good as soon as they take the required time off. They want to be just as fit, fast and pain free right when they come back.

It is important to remember that after time off, even if you are "heathy," it takes a bit of time for your body to adapt to the training again. With this comes pain, many times at the point of your old injury. This is nothing to freak out about and is normal. The important part is to be proactive with your self care, stretching and massaging regularly will be a huge help, in addition to being even more flexible with your schedule. The more you do this, the faster you will get back to where you were before you were knocked out.

OK, I will check in after Spirit of Racine this weekend!

Blake

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

A New Athlete...

If you have followed my blog over the last 6 months, you would have seen that I have really changed my approach heading into Ironman this year. No more endless 30-40hr training weeks, no more long easy hours on the bike, just training with a purpose, every time I get out the door. I have been racing a lot and going hard very often, all on less than 18hrs of training per week. This approach is partly due to my past training load, my experiences with coaches as of late, as well as needing more time to dedicate toward my growing coaching business.

I think that for athletes that are relatively new to the sport; miles logged and consistency in training are the keys to improvement. However, after no more improvement using this approach is seen, it is time to switch things up.

I am now just getting into the last 10 weeks of training before Ironman Wisconsin and this last weekend i had my first ride longer than 4hrs and first run longer than 90 minutes since January! Using my same zone guidelines, I PR'd the Ironman Wisconsin Course by 14 minutes, rolling 4:51 on ~280 watts....the next day I then ran a hilly 30k in 2:01(including warm-up, cd and traffic).

I will now be focusing a little more on my swim before Spirit of Racine in a few weeks. Then will probably hit 2-3 more weekends of similar training to this last, before racing again and finally, tapering for Wisconsin. During this time, my volume will not go over 25hrs in any 7 day period and will probably stay closer to 20 hours.

I will check in again before Spirit!

Blake