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Archive for May, 2010

Watching The Giro

Monday, May 24th, 2010

It’s a typical Sunday morning at the DeFilippis beach house, all the rooms are full, you start to hear the pitter patter of little feet on the 3rd floor, Boston starts to bark…It’s time to get up and train. I slowly walk down stairs, greet the little ones, Katelin and Connor, start to make my coffee, and check the email. Ah the Giro is on, I think I will watch a bit while drinkng my coffee before I head out to do my ride.  I click on the TV and sit on the couch when my nephew comes running up to the seat next to me. “The bike race is on Uncle Scottie” That’s right I say. Pointing to the screen, young  Connor asks, “Are you on TV uncle Scottie?” No this race is in Italy I tell him. “When are you gonna be on TV Uncle Scottie?”  Jeez this kid is putting the pressure on me… he,he,he… soon Connor Man, soon!!! But look  I tell him, those guys in black, that’s who we cheer for, The Cervelo Team and in particular Carlos Sastre  because he’s a little man like us…And they ride the same bikes as me, a Cervelo. Look, let me show you on the computer. So I whip out the lap top and navigate to the Cervelo Webpage. Look I tell him, that’s me and Bella…And these other guys are racing on TV now. “Oh” he says with wide eyes. Lets check to see how  Bella did in her race I tell him. “O.K. uncle scottie lets see” Wow Bella had a great day!! Third place!!.  “When can I ride a Cervelo Uncle Scottie?”  When you are big enough for a proper bike and not just a push bike,  I explain…

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After a few minutes a commercial comes on, Connor hops off the couch and grabs his push bike, trying his best to race around the house, poor boy he is still just a bit too small to get the hang of it, but he’s giving it a real go none the less . That’s great Connor, I encourage him. By the end of the summer we can start teaching you how to ride a proper bike like Katelin. We gotta get you on the bike early so you can be a bike monster by 20 and not 30. “Yeah, bike monster…Then I can ride a Cervelo like you”   he says. Boom!! He goes down…It’s o.k., get up… crashing is a part of it, I fall off my bike all the time…Well not all the time but I am trying my best to wipe the fear off his mind. He pops back up and off he goes…

O.K. commercial’s over lets see how Carlos is doing…I’m having a conversation with my 3 year old nephew trying to explain to him how the bike race works like I was trying to explain to some drunk guy at the pub last night what Ironman is..See.. today is a mountain day and so the small guys like us do better in the mountains than the big blokes.. And it looks like Carlos is having a pretty good day so far!    He nods like he knows exactly what I am saying, it’s quite hilarious really. 

I finish my coffee and tell him it’s time for me to go ride my bike …Alright, I gotta go ride my bike now Connor, but you keep watching so  when I get back you can tell me  how Carlos does...”Great, I’m gonna ride my bike too  Off he goes racing around the house!!!  Another perfect morning at the beach house!!!

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Ironman St. George…Being Proud

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

Sunday morning I was headed back to Las Vegas with my sister and brother in law where we would spend the next 3 days doing some normal things like site seeing, gambling, and relaxing at the pool.  After meeting several people following  the race and trying to explain to them that I was not happy with my 18th place  and especially a 5:34 bike split…I turned to my sister and asked if it was snobish to tell people that I finished 18th and had a great run but was still miserable. As usual my sister gave me the best advice. She said, “Just tell them that you are proud of your finish and you had your best run yet, however you are disappointed in your overall race…” Perfect…That pretty much sums up my day!!!

Headed into the race my good friend and former coach Brian Shea of Personal Best Nutrition asked what I was hoping for last Saturday. My response was pretty simple, “I just want to finish that marathon and not feel like it was the hardest thing i have ever done…I want to run, not walk/jog/walk/jog!!” This has been my biggest obstical since coming back to triathlon. I knew I was pretty fit and the strongest I have ever been so there was no reason why I should not have one of the fastest runs of the day..

The insturctions from Doc were simple, this is another training exercise in prepearation for more races to come later in the year.  I am not afraid of saying that my goal in Ironman France is to go over 1 hour faster than I did last year…

I will not deny that prerace I was scared of the forecast, rain/cold/wind…My 3 least favorite things.  I knew this was a possibly coming to this rac in May.  I understood that we would see either heat or cold and I respected that so I was not mad… As the race approached the forecast got better and better. 

The swim was cold but nothing like I thought it would be.  It was my error to let the pack go, right from the gun I just laid it up..F- It I will swim by myself, I thought.  But as we turned toward the last 2k, the wind picked up and the cold got to me.  I swam a good 5mins slower than I know I am capable of doing… An hour and two minutes, “F#ck Forget it, you are animal..Unleash it in the last 3 hours on the bike!!!”  This was James’ advice to me in the days before the race and I took it to heart. 

The first few minutes were cold but I was so glad to be out of the water and no longer had a head ache or nautia that I warmed up quite a bit.  After 30mins I rode by my sister, stopped and gave her my vest.  Now… the bike course was tough…It was no joke and we needed a race like this in the U.S.  It was 2 loops with over 30miles of climbing but it wasn’t the climbing that was tough, it was the combination of the wind and crap road surface that made it so challenging.  I moved up the field nicely during the first 3 hours and even at the start of the second loop I was smiling and felt good.  I don’t know how to explain what happened but after about 3 hours on the bike  it felt like I hadn’t been on my bike in months.    What I consumed in the days  leading up to and during the race will be addressed…

 Photo Taken By Jay Prahsuhn (Donna's Other Half)

Photo Taken By Jay Prahsuhn (Donna's Other Half)

Towards the end of the bike we came towards town and I was starving, I passed Heather and Jimmy and told them I needed food,  a hotdog, a donut, anything..  I was convinced my day was over.  Coming into transition my goal was to make it to 10k of the run then shut it down.  “It’s o.k. you had a solid day of training”, this is what was going thru my head.  Onto the run I started on the coke immediately.  The first 3 miles were all uphill with the most challenging portion coming from miles 3-4.  After the first few miles I found myself feeling pretty good.  I passed Donna’s husband Jay around 10k and I said to him that I was having a long day but…..It’s IRONMAN!!!”  So I contiuned on. 

Towards the end of the first loop I ran past an age group athlete who was running with 2 of his mates, it was clear that this man had a crash and broke something as his shoulder was in a sling.  “How can you quit if this guys is running with a brokern collar bone?”

  What goes up must come down,  last  3miles of the run are downhill and I really started flying. ”  I am going to run as hard as I can and salvage this day!!?  I thought.   I passed Heather and Jimmy at mile 11 and gave them a thumbs up, “I am finally running!!” I told them.  Thru the half mark I made the turn and didn’t even think twice…Keep hammering!!!  When I finally got to mile 20 I realized that I had a shot of having my fastest marthon in an Ironman to date.  You could see the smile on my face…”How am I having such a good run, when 2 hours ago I thought I couldn’t go anymore???”  One more hill, up and over I went… With a mile to go I could feel my eyes starting to well up, “I finally proved to myself that I can run off the bike!!” I never gave up, all day… I was so proud of myself.  It didn’t go well out there on the bike and I know I should have riddenmuch, much faster but I didn’t have a pity party… I kept fighting and that provedmore to me than anything I have done in training or racing in the last 3 years…  If I would have dropped out I would sitting here still wondering if I was ever going to figure out the run  Instead I now know I can do it and have my head held high looking forward to the rest of the year!!

Photo taken by Jay Prasuhn

Photo taken by Jay Prasuhn

Crossing the finish line I slapped my hands together in frustration but also in anticipation for whats to come. ” I could have kept going”, I thought.   These are all good signs!!  The animal was never unleashed on the bike but I know it’s there, deep inside, ready to come roaring out!!!

Overall St. George was a great experience and I recommend this race to anyone… At first I thought I would never to this race again but it defines Ironman.  It’s not easy, it’s hard as nails, and it takes a hard person to tackle this event.  It’s not Ironman Florida or Lousiville, its the real deal and I love it for that.  Ironman takes alot of sacrifice to prepare for so it was great to able to go to Las Vegas and relax for a few day!

Big thank you to my homestay, the Flanagans, to my sis and brother in law for making the trip and showing The Wongstar and I Las Vegas.  Oh and Thanks to Ran for taking us all to the adult pool at the Mandaly Bay!!!

Sponsors and Supporters: The Bike Boutique, Cervelo, Avia, Louis Garneau, 3T, Blueseventy, Token, ISM Seat, Personal Best Nutrition, Hawk Racing, Sandyhookers Triathlon Club, The JT Foundation, and The Doctors at Advanced Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute