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Powerman FL.

Sunday, December 6th, 2009

I raced Powerman Florida this morning. I was 4th after the run, 50-60 seconds behind– just sat back comfortably on the first 8k run.  Next was a 53 k bike,  followed by another 8k run. It was about 11-12 celsius w rain, so I loved this weather. Onto the bike I was really strong today, and made up the deficet within 9-10 miles on all three guys. I was putting them out of sight after that and really started to ride hard. There was a point on the course that the 2nd loop of the bike would start, and the next time to that point you would head back to transition. Well, when I came to what I thought was this point, I slowed and said “I’m in the lead, which way back to transition” Most of the volunteers had bailed due to the cold weather, and I guess the people there didn’t know what the course was. They said, “go right” so I did, and after 2-3 miles I realized this was not the right way, and started asking AG’ers, one guy finally told me I was supposed to go straight back there. So I turned around and by the time I got back to transition 4 guys were already on the run, and one I saw was finishing his first of two loops. I was out of the money, and my plantar fasciata was killing me…so I was not gonna smash it any more.

Very dissapointing to be so strong today (after some changes with my mental approach and to my training the last 4 weeks)  but to have a mishap like this and not make the $850 I was about to get if I just ran the last 8k at a decent pace.

The Beach

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

I just spent the last week near St. Augustine, Florida. I was staying with my friend, who lives right on the Atlantic Ocean. It was fun to watch the surfers, and learn more about it…..it seems like it would be kind of an annoying sport, b/c you can’t surf everyday due to the way the waves are breaking. So you may go 4-5 days w-out any good waves, then when the waves do come you gotta spend the whole day training so you get the most out of it. I also went out to the beach at night andlook at the sky….it’s not a tourist type beach, so very few hotels in the area I was, and not alot of lights. So to stand on the beach at night and look up at the stars it was really cool b/c they are so clear…it also was nice that it was a quiet beach and no one on the beach for miles it seemed in either direction. Also met a nice running group and got to train with them a bit. Swam in the ocean, got seasick, and swam in the intercoastal waterway, and decided this was prime shark feeding and freaked out after about 5 minutes and got out.  Some guy had his car stuck in the sand, and I came and helped pull him out..he kept shakin my hand, and saying thanks..and shaking my hand, and saying thanks…and then he handed me a beer, maybe the only one left in his cooler.  Rode down A1A to Flagler Beach one day, rode back, real windy.

So that’s about it for now, next race will most likely be Powerman Florida in about 3 weeks.

Ironman Florida

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

I came into Ironman Florida with a little bit more attention than I had before, or so I felt. I got a few mentions in Ironman pre-race articles, and got to be a part of the pro panel before the race.

Leading to the race, I was swimming great in the pool (for me). Last time I was swimming this fast, I swam 51 minutes at Arizona ’06, and was not too far from the front of the race.  With that in mind, I had high hopes for this swim.  But that wasn’t to be, the water was really rough, and 200 meters into the swim, I found myself  in desperation mode.  I was trying to sprint myself onto the back of the quickly dissapearing front group.  As they swam into the waves and out of sight, I had no choice but to settled in. 

I had many opportunities to hop on with other swimmers.  Like when Blake, and Justin came up on me late in the 1st loop.  I tried to hop on with them.  But they just pulled away, I sat right on the feet, but lost them so easily. Into the second loop I was hurting…people just kept swimming by, and I could do nothing to hop on their feet. By the end of the 2nd loop, my focus was on a solo race.  I thought, “Okay today, I’ll ride my own pace, and not worry about staying in any bike groups, b/c I’ll be alone” “Save it for the run” I rememberd Max Longree, and how far back he was on the swim at Louisville last year.  He went by me late in the bike ride, looking strong b/c he paced the bike so well, and just demolished everyone on the run to take the win…I was hoping for this.

Once on the bike, I was optimistic and enjoying the ride. I thought I was riding fast. I thought I had ridden through all the women, but about mile 40 I finally passed the lead women, it was a bit of a blow to the ego, to pass her so late in the ride. Then an age group athlete road up on me, and it really was getting to me now. “this guy has a job, a family, kids…and he has already made up ten minutes on me!!” I don’t know why, but it really got to me out there, like never befoer. A group rode up on me, including two women, and I could not go with them, unless I wanted to cheat and sit on the wheel, like half the group was doing anyways…but I didn’t want to do that. 

Once I got to the bike out and back section, it happened, I saw the lead the the first 15-20 guys had on me…it went straight to my head, and I was done for. I lost all power, motivation, and heart at that moment. I felt so embarrased to be where I was, and at that point was riding to turn in my chip…and save it for Powerman Florida in a month’s time.  I’ll get myself up for that race, and end of season assess where I am at.  I know I have something more in me, I may just need a break and a re-organization of my life.

Pictures of Pumpkins

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

So yesterday was Halloween in the U.S. I don’t think it’s quite as much of a big deal anywhere else, not that it’s a huge deal here…but anywaaays. The neighbors had a pumpkin carving contest last night, and I tried to get a few good pictures, although they did not turn out too great, and a few of the pumpkins were already gone when I took the pictures, but fun to look at in person nonetheless. It’s also Orange season, so lot’s of bright orange colored Oranges popping up all over the groves when you are out riding and running….not supposed to pick them and eat, but if no one is looking..maybe just one. The top picture, front and center pumpkin is supposed to be a couple of dogs/wolves howling, you gotta look close b/c of the lighting. There were alot of interstingly carved ones. I like the basiold pumpkin best though with just a mean lookng face.

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Training day at the Great Floridian Iron Distance

Monday, October 26th, 2009

I was planning this weekend on racing Aqua-Bike portion of the 19th annual Great Floridian Iron Distance, and going for a short brick run afterwards…Sunday I would do my long run.  So I was rolling in to the weekend treating it as the end of  hard training block. Well about 4 p.m. the day before the race, I decided to do the full distance, b/c I’ve done back to back Ironmans before, and the second is always better than the first..so I figured this would be good for my result at Ironman Florida….and the race was just down the street, so it was so tempting to have an all day catored training session.

The bike course this year was changed a bit, and managed to make it tougher than years prior drilling us with endless hills.  It was a warm day as well, so I thought it would be a good chance to try out some new things on nutrition that would help me in warmer conditions. In the past I have melted at every hot longer race I have done…and alot of my long workouts in the heat. (I still suffered a good deal yesterday, but partially due to the fatigue in my legs from recent training. and not so much heat) I stopped in to my local nutrition, and Red Bull sponsor “Gear For Multisport” and saw Kevin and Kimberly the night before the race and made sure I had enough supplies to finish…they helped alot, thanks!

www.gearformultisport.com

It’s a nice little shop located at the National Training Center, I’ll do a blog with some pictures later. Lot’s of supplies for triathletes, from clothing, to shoes, to nutrition.

I came out of the swim in 2nd, and got into the lead in transition. Got to ride behind the lead car all day which was fun, and kept me motivated to ride hard. Onto the run, it was 3 x 14k loops, except there was a short course race going on and it was a 15k run…somehow the first loop i did an out and back section and made the first loop 15k..no big deal, until later in the run when you want to run 42k’s and not 43! My lead had grown, which it should, considering I was the only elite license in the race. I considered stopping after the first loop,to save my legs for IM florida, started walking for a while to give my chip in, but then thought it would be disrespectful to the race and other competitors….and then remember that this would help me not hurt me to finish.

I came across in first place, and was happy with the effort on some pretty tired legs.

Thanks again to SommerSports for putting on a great race here in Clermont. They put on tons of races here in town, and some out of the area. They are always very well run, and I hope to see more athletes at this race next year, it’s well worth the trip to race one of the longest running Iron Distance races in the world and one of the toughest in the U.S.

Racing a 7 year old.

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

So today was another day of record heat in central Florida, and I was out in the middle of it for a longgg  ride with a brick run after. I headed out on the run, a little hot and tired, close to doing the Subic Bay shuffle, but stayed on top of my salt today, and learning how to deal with the heat better, so wasn’t quite there yet. I got down to the lake, and began running down the trail and ran past a group of people, looked like a family having a picnic. And all of a sudden this little blond haired girl, probalby 6 or 7 years old goes sprinting from the group down the path in front of me. At first I though she was just chasing something, but she kept going…right there in front of me and I couldn’t catch her, everytime I picked it up a little and got close she would hear me and go a little faster.  It was weird b/c her family didn’t yell at her to come back, and no one came after her. She was putting the hurt on me though, and at first just was annoying the crap out of me. A couple hundred meters later, I finally managed to pull beside her, and at this point I thought it was pretty amusing. She was running with typical little kid style, leaning forward, no sense of pacing, just playing. I said to her “good job” and she looked at me with a very focused face, and took off sprinting again and dropped me. Evenutally her lack of pacing got to her and she sat down on a bench, but still was pretty funny. I turned around later, and headed back that way, and she was walking back towards her family. When I went by, I heard her footsteps pick up as she tried to catch back up to me…but a couple seconds later I turn around and she was walking again….BONK!!

I always knew I was faster than 7 year old girls! ;-)

South Carolina Half IM

Monday, October 5th, 2009

36 hours with:

2 x 8.5 hour drives
2 x Waffle House All Star Specials
1 x South Carolina Half
1 x Half IM Run Split P.B.

It was a fun race this weekend, it was my third weekend in a row with a 1/2 IM race, and I been feeling stronger every race. Two weeks ago I race Savageman and it’s a great race, tough course, but I was pretty weak. Last week I stayed here in Clermont and raced the Florida Challenge Half, again on a really tough course, in some heat, and had a better race there than the week before and was able to win. This week was South Carolina Half IM, and I was able to win again. I forgot my wetsuit, and had to borrow one last minute. On the bike it was burning in my legs from the start, but it was good, b/c when you don’t taper and been racing alot, there is no shock or panic when it starts to hurt, it’s a normal feeling. I came off the bike in second and the rolling hills of the run were really fun to run over, I could let loose on the downhills, and work on the uphills. It was the best feeling I have had running in a race in over a year, and was able to run a 1:16:01 which is my fastest run split by 2 minutes.

Thanks to all the races the last three weeks.

www.savagemantri.org
Savageman 1/2

http://floridachallenge.com/

Florida Challenge 1/2

http://www.setupevents.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=event_detail&eventID=1154
South Carolina Half

Living the dream

Saturday, October 3rd, 2009

Can’t think of an interesting blog…..so this was yesterday…and it was a good day, if this is what I “get” to do:

- woke up, ate breakfast, on board my P2, 3.5 hours with 3×30′ at hard pace. Come home, eat some lunch, send out some workouts..watch some t.v. Run 60′ long way to the pool, 4k swim with main set some hard 300′s, and run short way home another 15′, eat, go to sleep. A day of living the dream!

Particle Man

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

Particle Man is riding, riding, riding, riding, riding, running some, swimming some, but really just riding, riding, riding, riding, so I can go strong at Ironman Florida..rooooaaarrrr!!!!

My new workstand :-)

Saturday, September 19th, 2009

Jay (Team TBB Donna’s husband) took a picture of me yesterday as I was building my bike on a little makeshift workstand here at the Savageman Triathlon. We are all staying in a big ski lodge type house, and it’s been a pretty good time so far. Hearing Brad Rex’s endless stories of racing as a professional in the 80′s and 90′s is pretty entertaining.

zach