Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sprint Tri on Sunday ...

This will be my first race in over 2.5 months and I am just itching to get out there and let 'er rip!

Here is the race map:

The race is at the Texas Ski Ranch and it is a  500 M Swim - 14 Mi Bike - 3.1 Mi Run.  Last year those distances actually intimidated me. This year I am thinking that additional training will need to be done on Sunday evening/  How things have changed!

The swim is pretty tight and the washing machine will be in full effect.  The water temp is in the mid-80s so no wetsuits.  The water is also a combination of mud and oil color - it is a disgusting lake.  If you look at the above map the little island in the center of the lake has goats on it.  Real goats.  Something you do not see everyday! Last year's swim I started in the back, this year I am going to start at the front of my AG and just hammer the first 100M to try and find some open water and maybe some feet!

The roads for a majority of the bike course were literally chip sealed two days before the race.  It was one tough ride.  Hopefully over the course of the year the traffic has hammered down some of the stones and the ride will be smoother.  The bike course is also extremely hilly.  Last year it was the first time I ever had a chance to ride on hills and despite the crappy road surface I really enjoyed it. Since I have been doing quite a bit of hill training lately I am looking forward to seeing how I do on them. My plan for the bike is to mash as hard as I can and just pretend that I don't have to run after.  

As for the run, the  course is a flat and fast out and back.  Nothing special but it will probably be pretty crowded with over 1000 triathletes this year.  It looks like the changed the run course slightly and have us circling the lake.  If I remember correctly this is a dirt trail - should be fun!

Some of you might be wondering why I haven't raced in 2.5 months and I'll let this next screen shot explain:

This is the forecast for Sunday.  The summers for us Texans is just too brutal to race in so if we do it is nothing but a Sprint Tri.  The good news is that the humidity is ONLY going to be 58% - that is going to make the air feel crisp to me! My wave starts at 8:15am so the sun should be up and blazing by that point.  Luckily it is a short race so I will just hydrate like a madman on Saturday and that should get me through to the free beer tent at the finish line.

So this race is in New Braunfels, which is about a 1/2 hour south of Austin, we have rented a little house on the Guadalupe river with some friends.  We are driving up tomorrow evening and planning on a couple of days of R&R.  On Saturday we are going to go tubing in the river.  The water temp of the river is usually around 60 degrees and the float is very slow. We usually rent an extra tube for a cooler of beer and snacks.  My goal is to not get drunk on the river.  Seriously, this is much harder to achieve than one may think.  Beer, bikinis, tubes, music, hot sun, cool river, drunk friends - these are all initiators to drunkenness.  I am going to volunteer to be the Designated Driver, my only hope.

Well, that is all I got right now.  Good luck to everyone else racing this weekend!

Thanks for Reading,


Monday, July 26, 2010

How To Train in the Heat and Humidity of Houston, Texas ...

Houston, TX

Average July High Temperature  -  93.6 F
Average Morning Relative Humidity  -  93%

Yep, that is my average day down here in the South East corner of the Lone Star State.  A lot of people who have never visited the Houston area are under the impression that because we are in Texas that we are surrounded by deserts, cacti, and armadillos.  Well, that is not the case!  The climate in Houston is very much like the climate in Central Florida.  Visitors are always amazed by the large amount of trees and inland bodies of water.  They are also amazed at the amount of humidity.  Which brings me to the subject of todays post.


On May 17th of this year I did a local Half Ironman race in Denton, TX. Denton is 5 hours North of Houston and the temperatures were supposed to be in the low 70's with rain and overcast skies.  As is the case with most weather predictions, this forecast was completely wrong.  The temperatures ended up reaching the low 90's and the humidity was well into the high 80 percentile.  I crashed and burned, literally.  My body fell apart under these conditions as I suffered from severe cramping in my legs and experienced the effects of dehydration. Both my training and nutrition were completely unprepared for the day.  So instead of just chalking it up to poor and unexpected conditions I have been actively training in these conditions and experimenting with my nutritional needs so if this happens again I will be prepared.

Sweat Rate:

About 6 weeks ago I found an article (HERE) in Runners World about calculating your Sweat Rate.  Look at the article to get the calculations if you are interested.  My overall opinion of the Sweat Rate Calculator is -  Ehh.  It may work for others but here in Humid-ville I found it to be unreliable.  The problem is that in the mornings our humidity is usually in the 90th percentile.  In the afternoons the humidity drops by 20-30% but the temperature is up in the 90's.  This means I have a different sweat rate depending on what time of day I decided to train and I have a completely different sweat rate on the bike too.  It might work for others but for me it is just too much to calculate and I do not want to have to get a weather forecast every time I run or bike.  I'll go over hydration a little later.  IMO, Sweat Rate Calculator = FAIL.

Trial & Error:

Now a normal person would probably just be happy with the Sweat Rate Calculations and leave it at that!  But I decided I'd like to do it the hard way and just experiment with hydration and nutrition while doing my workouts.  Sort of like practicing transitions, it would just become something I do!

First, on any run or bike of an hour or more my gel's of choice would either be GU Vanilla or Chocolate #9 Agave Gel.  I'd carry water on either a Nathan's Hydration Belt or in bottles on the bike.  On a couple of long rides my quads and calves would feel some cramping but overall this seemed to be working.  I had a system of a gel every 40 minutes and about 10-12 ounces of water every half hour.  In addition to the above I also began to try out Succeed S! Caps to get my sodium needs met.  I began taking one S! Cap every 30 minutes during training and all of a sudden I no longer was having muscle tightness during workouts.  Life was good!

Then a buddy of mine in the Tri Club introduced me to the EFS Liquid Shots from First Endurance.  As I looked over the ingredients I noticed the Liquid Shots had a much higher quantity of Electrolytes (1500mg) and still had 400 calories in a little 5oz reusable container:
(Click on image to see larger view)

I ordered the Liquid Shots ($30 for box of 6) and began my trial and error test again.  At first the taste was a little bland but after the first 5oz bottle I became accustomed to the taste and actually like it now.  After using 6 bottles and testing on some long runs and long rides of 84mi, 60mi, and 52mi all I can say is this stuff is awesome!  To me the difference from GU or Chocolate #9 is the higher electrolyte count in the Liquid Shots. With the other gels I would take them and get an immediate "boost" - almost a sugar rush feeling.  This is great but the problem is that after 40 or so minutes I would also experience a sugar crash.  This does not happen with the Liquid Shots.  Just a sustained boost throughout.  

Now back to the purpose of this post and how does the Liquid Shots help in the heat and humidity?  It replenishes the body with sodium which is essential to keeping the body and muscles hydrated.  I figure if I am going to take a gel it might as well do more than just give me calories like GU, Hammer, or Chocolate #9 do.  

So to recap:  To train (and race) in the brutal summer conditions my nutrition is 1-oz of Liquid Shots every 40minutes and 1-Succeed S! Cap every 30 minutes.  Now in addition to the nutritional needs let's talk about keeping  hydrated.  I have been riding with 3 -20oz bottles of G2 and this gets me through about 3 hours.  When running I carry 2-10oz Nathan's Bottles or 1-22oz Nathans Hand Held Bottle of G2.  This gets me through about 8 miles.  Simple and repeatable.

Everyone is going to have different needs and opinions on what works for them.  These are what works for me and could be the exact opposite of what you need.  What I am trying to say is don't blindly take my advice and go off and race using my strategy.  Practice and Train, Trial and Error.

**Disclaimer:   All products were paid for by me and these are my opinions and my findings alone.  I am not a doctor or physical therapist or coach or anything of that nature and I didn't even stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.  So take everything said above with a grain of sodium.

Thanks for Reading,


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Week 5 Training Recap ...

This was Week 5 of the Fitzgerald HIM Training Plan.  It was a very productive week in that not a single workout was missed or modified.  Actually a few minutes were added here and there so I guess some of the workouts did get modified?  Oh, well ...

The numbers:

Swim -  4 Workouts - 4hrs 40mins - 10,100 yards
Bike  -  4 Workouts - 6hrs 31mins - 115.81 miles
Run   -  4 Workouts - 3hrs 54mins - 24.45 miles
                  Totals - 12 Workouts - 15hrs 05mins

Long Bike - 60 miles
Long Run - 10 miles

Here is the Week 6 Schedule.  I am doing a race on Sunday so Saturday is going to become my Off Day and Monday will be my Long Run Day.  This is not a big deal because my training weeks begin on Tuesday so it actually works out.  It is funny how race days just screw up long term training goals!

(Click Image to see Larger View)

Thanks for Reading,


Friday, July 23, 2010

Best. Movie. Trailer. EVAH --- SHARKTOPUS

I had a post that was going to go up this morning about hard work, motivation, blood, sweat, tears ...yada, yada, yada.  BUT then this little gem came across my email from my buddy Mike.  I don't want to spoil it for you so I'll just offer a few teaser phrases:  Julia Robert's brother, Shark + Octopus = AWESOMENESS, and SyFy Network.  Turn up your volume, sit back and Enjoy:

Yep, That Just Happened.  Boom!

*Release Date not yet announced.  Sigh.


Sunday, July 18, 2010

Week 4 of HIM Training Recap & Katy Century Ride

This was the first recovery week of the 20-Week Matt Fitzgerald Half Ironman Training Plan and here are the totals:

Swim - 3 Workouts - 3hrs 55mins -  8200 yards
Bike  - 3 Workouts - 6hrs 04mins -  116.75 miles
Run   - 4 Workouts - 2hrs 05mins -  14.03 miles
            Totals - 12 hours 04 minutes

I know those numbers are a little higher than a normal recovery week but I did take it pretty easy except for the weekend.  On Saturday I went on a group ride with a bunch of people from my Master's Swim club. It was only 22 miles but the pace was fast and then a few of us did a short 2.14 mile run to complete the Brick workout.

And today was the Katy Flatlands Century Ride.  It was already 80 degrees (topped out at 97) at 6am and the humidity was at 90% so I loaded up on EFS Liquid Shots and the S! Sodium Caps (ended up taking 12 of these). There was at least 2000 cyclists on this ride and you could choose from a number of different distances - 24,40,62,84, and 100.  I was in the fourth or fifth flight and it was extremely crowded for the first 10-15 miles or so.  After that it started to space out and was much more comfortable.  My plan was to try and not draft too much and I did an okay job of this.  But as you can imagine with that many riders and huge peletons you sometimes just got sucked into them - which I did not mind all that much when I needed a little rest (-:

The ride was going pretty well.  For the first 50 miles I averaged 20.6 MPH and then around mile 55 I started to have trouble with my right cleat.  It kept slipping off the pedal and would then unclip and each time it tweaked my knee - not good times!  It did this 4 times so I pulled into the rest stop at mile 60 and luckily found the SAG vehicle. I gave the tech guy my right shoe and he said it was pretty jacked up.  I kicked off my other shoe and went over and refilled my bottles and ate a banana and some Oreo's.  I also took this moment to wring out the sweat from my headband and jersey - you could have filled a five gallon bucket with the sweat!  I went back and got my shoe and the tech told me it needed replaced but he tweaked it and should be good for the rest of the ride.

So I took off and within 5 minutes the cleat slipped off again and then again.  Needless to say this was not fun.   Well, about 2 miles later (mile 65) the split came and you either went left for the 100 miles or right for the 84 miles.  With the pain-in-the-ass cleat it was a no brainer to cut it short and take the 84 mile route.  I was a little bummed because I really wanted to complete the century and I was still feeling pretty strong but these things happen and at least I didn't discover the cleat problem during an actual race.  Think I might just get new Tri Specific shoes?

Oh, the best part is that the last 20 miles of the ride the cleat didn't misfire once - had to laugh at this!

The main positive take-away for me was that despite the extreme heat I had an excellent ride.  My average over the 84 mile course was 19.4 MPH and the last 10 miles I averaged over 20 MPH and my legs felt great at the end of the ride.  Six months ago I would have struggled to average over 17.5 MPH over this distance so all the hard work is paying off!

This coming week is back to the grindstone.  The plan calls for about a 15 hour week of training and then next week I have an actual Sprint Tri - can't wait  Here is the Week 5 Schedule:

Thanks for Reading and have a great week,


Thursday, July 15, 2010

I Love Triathlon for the Gear ...

Sure, the healthy lifestyle has its advantages.  Pushing myself to get better at not one, but three completely different sports has certain intrinsic rewards.  Even looking fit enough to wear head-to-toe lycra in public has a certain redeeming quality.  BUT, for me, the Gear is what really gets me excited!

 Yep the new Garmin 310XT arrived yesterday at 6:50PM.  I had it out of the box, did the run start up programming, paired the HR monitor, and even found 10 minutes to have it 27% charged for a 7:30PM run.  It was awesome!

Now the run wasn't very fun.  It was 96 degrees with dangerous humidity and the 4.33 miles were more trudged than ran.  But the Garmin 310XT performed like a champ.  Unlike most geeks, I am pretty coordinated!  I can usually do a few things at once without looking like a total goober and I used this skill during the run.  I switched from screen to screen and tried out each and every option on the 310XT.  The functionality of it is just so slick and easy. I am going to love this Garmin.

Now I could go and write a review but that has been done like a million times already so I will just say that I am sorry to all the people who I recommended buy the Garmin 305.  Yes, the 305 is a good device and serves it's purpose.  However, the 305 is sort of like using public transportation whereas the 310 is like being driven in a Bentley by Morgan Freeman with a bunch of playboy bunnies in the back .  Both will get you to your final destination but the Bentley, the Bunnies, and Morgan are sooooo much more fun!

After work today I did all the software downloads and hooked up the wireless +ANT sync.  This is all very cool too.  I setup all my HR zones and customized views for the swim, bike, and run.  I also purchased the 310XT Quick Release Kit..  This is a wrist strap and a bike mount kit.  It allows for the quick and painless transfer of the 310XT.  The bike mount is solid and easily mounted on my aero bars and the wrist strap seems a little flimsy but the connection is very ridged and I imagine it will hold up while racing.

Okay, enough with the gushing about the new toy!  Let's get to the Carrot State of the Union Address:

Overall my conditioning is feeling very strong right now.  This lesser volume week has given my legs the burst they were missing towards the end of last week.

My swim conditioning and speed is just getting better and better.  Joining the Master's swim class has been one of the smartest things I have done since starting this crazy sport.  I have met some great people in the class but more importantly these people are pushing me to work harder to improve.  Four weeks ago I would never have considered doing a half ironman swim (let alone a full IM) sans wetsuit.  Now I could careless because I know I can do the distance and do it strong.

As pleased as I am about my swim I am even more pleased with the bike.  Just my overall handling and understanding of my bike has increased tremendously. I used to appreciate a good ride but now I absolutely love it. This is becoming my favorite of the three sports.  By incorporating riding hills into my training this has made me stronger on the flats.  I have been doing at least one bike-to-run brick every week and this has been paying off in terms of learning bike pacing and what my legs need.  Very cool.  Now I still have a lot of work on the bike to do and the only way to do that is to put my butt in that saddle and ride.

My run is about 80% to where I want to be.  I have struggled with some of the outdoor runs in the the heat but have excelled when the run workouts are on the treadmill.  Now I do believe the tough, humid runs are making me stronger and the results are showing when I come indoors but, WOW, does it suck trying to run in Houston during the peak of Summer.  I sometimes want to run more than my training plan recommends but I have decided to trust the plan because I can slowly feel my running legs coming back to me each and every run!

That is all I got!  Will report back after my first Century Ride on Sunday.

Thanks for Reading,


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap ...

I hope everyone had a wonderful week!

First, I'd like to welcome the new "Followers" to the Carrot.  Please feel free to comment and interact and also visit all the other Endurance Blogs listed over in the right-hand sidebar!

Also a couple of Blogger Buddies are competing at the Ironman 70.3 Rhode Island this morning.  Best of luck to Jason and Krystyna!  Oh, and Jon is on some super secret mission in Providence today.  Me thinks he is volunteering at the 70.3 to get a chance to signup for Ironman Lake Placid 2011 - surely he will let us all in soon on his diabolical scheme! (*Update* - Jon is racing, just looked him up on Forgot his first name is actually Leonard - and he had a very solid swim and bike split so should be on the run course right now -- way to go Jon!)

Also Congrats to DROG on ripping up the LTF Oly Course yesterday and completing his first ever Triathlon!


Today is the completion of Week 3 of my Half Ironman Training Program and here are the stats:

Swim  -  4 workouts - 4 h 50 mins - 10,100 yards
Bike   -  4 workouts - 6 h 15 mins - 116.60 miles
Run   -  4 workouts - 3 h 10 mins - 19.50 miles
            Total Time -  14 h 15 mins of training

  • My legs are feeling the last 3 weeks.  This is the most volume I have ever done and the Foam Roller is in full overtime mode right now.  Next week is the scheduled Recovery Week and my volume is going to drop down to only 10 hours.  However, I need to play with the Week 4 schedule some because on Sunday I am doing a 100 Mile Ride (Katy Flatland Century Ride) - way to really focus on recovery huh? Here is the upcoming Week 4 Training Schedule:
  • I am really sick of SNAKES.  On Tuesday I had a big 'ol 4ft snake strike at me while on the bike at Duessen Park.  It was crossing the road right as I turned onto it and a car was coming the other way and it turned right into me as it was trapped between the car and me.  It missed both me and the bike but it still gave me quite the scare. Luckily my shorts remained unsoiled.  Yesterday while finishing my ride I pulled into the church parking lot where the car was parked and another big 'ol black snake was sunning itself right behind my car.  I found a big stick and poked it and it slowly slithered away.  Then this morning while doing my run I cut through a walking path to get back to the main road and a little water moccasin was just laying in the center of the path.  I saw it before it saw me and those damn things are dangerous so I turned around and ran back to the main road - of course after I lobed a big rock at it - I missed and ran like hell away from it!  
  • Guys, I know I mentioned this last week, but I am REALLY digging the EFS Liquid Shots.  The 1500mg of Electrolytes per 5oz bottle is making a huge difference in the effectiveness of my training in  this suffocating heat.  I am using it just like GU and the results are outstanding.  It cost $30 for a 6-pk of 5oz  flask bottles.  That comes out to be $1 an ounce or $1 per serving so it it pretty economical too.  The 5oz flasks can be reused and refilled with a 32oz bottle.  There has been a lot of talk about electrolyte and sodium depletion in the blogosphere the last few weeks.  So I am going to write a more detailed review in the future on the EFS Liquid Shots and on how I have figured out a good program for managing my electrolyte intake in this heat.  As usual I have been using myself as a guinea pig - Houston has provided me with the perfect testing grounds this summer!

Thanks for Reading,


Friday, July 9, 2010

One year ago this week ...

I was at The Festival of San Fermin in Pamplona, Spain - Running With the Bulls.

Riding of the Copper Bull!

In the Stadium after our "Run"

Hanging over the "Running" lane during a 3 Day bender!
Yes my clothes are stained with vino.

It is funny because this feels like it happened years ago but at the same time like it just happened a couple of days ago - very weird, but such is life I guess?

Looking back on the Running of the Bulls I realize it was a very cool experience but something that I will never do again.  First off, I was 33 years old at the time and we partied like we were in college.  It took me weeks to recover from the abuse.  Second, the actual Running was just crazy.  Crazy stupid!  I had a sore jaw and bruised ribs from getting clocked by other runners.  The other runners were almost as dangerous as the 1200 pound bulls.  Now all that being said, I am glad I did it.  A once in a lifetime experience!

Some Random Notes:
  • I have really been enjoying the EFS Liquid Shots from First Endurance.  They are 5oz gel shots that are like GU or Hammer Gel but have 1500mg of sodium per serving.  With the extreme heat and humidity that we have all been experiencing lately these have really helped me keep my sodium levels up and prevent muscle cramping.
  • In conjunction with the EFS above I have also been using Succeed S!Caps.  These little gel caps are loaded with electrolytes: 341mg per capsule.  On my long rides and runs I have been popping one of these per hour.  If my sweat rate is extremely high I have been taking one each half hour.  My performance has really been steady, even on the most humid of days.
  • I am really sick of rain.  We have been having torrential downpours for over a week.  The buoys here are all filled and we are expecting more rain this weekend.  Sure hope I can get my long ride in this Saturday and not be relegated to the trainer again!
  • Because of the rain and humidity I have been doing most of my running on the treadmill at the gym.  And as crazy as this sounds I am actually enjoying the treadmill runs.  Crazy, right? (Emz can relate!)
  • Has anyone else noticed that Blogger has been a little freaky?  The Blogs I Follow has not been updating relegating me to using the dashboard feature?
  • Week 3 of my HIM Training is going well.  I haven't missed a single workout but my body is feeling a little fatigue.  Week 4 is the recovery week and I am looking forward to a recovery week for once!
  • My next Tri's are:  Aug 1st - Jack's Generic Sprint (500 yd/13.8 mi/3.1 mi); Oct 18th - Try Andy's Tri (400 yd/10 mi/3 mi); and Nov 7th - IronStar (1.2 mi/56mi/31.1mi). 
  • I'm thinking about doing an Oly Distance Tri at the end of August, but a local 10K is happening and Annie wants to do that so we probably just run.
  • I took the Zipp 440 tubular front and the disc cover rear wheels off of my bike and put the trainers back on and I got to admit that I didn't feel as fast.  It might be mental though because my Garmin data looks the same.
  • Speaking of Garmin, my 305 died on my this week.  I have dropped it on the concrete probably 100 times as I am a klutz.  But the first time I dropped it on the tile floor in the laundry room was all it could handle.  It will turn on but when I try to select a different screen it shuts off.  I played with it for a couple of days and the aggravation finally led me to order a new Garmin 310XT.  I was thinking about getting the 310xt since it has a 20 hour battery life anyway, but it always sucks to drop that type of cash when it is unplanned.
Have a great weekend everyone!

Thanks for Reading,


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

What the Heck is Wrong With Me?

Something is seriously not right with me these last few weeks?  I have been waking up at 4:15am every Tuesday and Thursday for the last three weeks and am REALLY enjoying it?  I KNOW?  CRAZY, right? Well, let me clarify.  The 4:15am wake up call is not what I am enjoying but the Master's swim classes that begin a short 45 minutes after the alarm beeps are what I am liking!

Let me explain in more detail: As I was deftly moving around the bedroom this morning with ninja-like dexterity trying not to wake the wifey - I saw my reflection in the mirror and something unusual made me take notice.  No it was not the abundance of grey hair in my 3 day old beard or the dark circles surrounding my tired eyes.  It was that I was smiling? AND  I was smiling because I was going swimming!

Yep, that is right - I like swimming and this morning was the first time I let myself acknowledge this fact.

Now I get to the gym and jump into the pool and exchange some pleasantries with Coach Katie.  I look up at the dry erase board and assume Katie is having a difficult morning because the 3000 yard workout is just loaded with kicks, pulls, and builds - she is trying to hurt us is all that I can assume!  Midway through the butt kicking Coack Katie tells me that my swimming is looking, "Strong today"!  I look over my shoulder to make sure she was indeed speaking to me and not someone else and lo and behold I am the only one in the lane.  She then tells me that I am ready to learn how to do a Flip Turn.

Now I have never attempted a flip turn in my life.  I always just assumed that a Flip Turn was something that only really good swimmers did and they had a super secret club that taught them how to do these Flip Turns  I even rationalized to myself that this group of swimmers probably even had like a cool secret handshake too!

Well today was my initiation into club because Katie showed me how to do this elusive Flip Turn!  I pretty much looked like I was having epileptic seizures my first few attempts.  The group had a couple good chuckles as my nose seemed to be sucking in more water than the new massive skimmer, A Whale,  in the Gulf.  But after a few more attempts I started to figure it out.  Still have a lot of practice to get it right but in a weird way I feel like I entered the exclusive Flip Turn Club - maybe on Thursday they will show me the handshake?

Here is a good video of how to do Flip Turns:

Thanks for Reading,


Monday, July 5, 2010

Recap - 2nd Week of HIM Training

Last week was another solid week in the books.  Unfortunately, after Hurricane Alex hit south of us the remaining storms decided to sit down right on top of us for pretty much the entire week.  We had just downpour after downpour and this forced my bike workouts to the indoor trainer and the run ones to the treadmill.  Overall here are the raw numbers:

Swim - 3 workouts - 3 hrs 5 mins (7710 yds)
Bike - 3 workouts - 4 hrs 15 mins (76.5 miles)
Run - 4 workouts - 3 hrs 16 mins (21.01 miles)
                      Totals:  10 hrs 36 mins

One master's swim was missed on Thursday morning because I was sick.  On Friday afternoon I went to the gym to swim and the indoor pool was shut down because of lightning.  I thought this weird since the pool I wanted to swim in was indoors?  BUT the aquatics folks explained that the pools are all connect via an intricate underground network and you can be electrocuted indoors.  Okay, I actually used the term "intricate underground network" after they told me to get out of the pool but suggested they use it in the future to help explain things better.  They did not seem impressed.  The good news was that they did let us in for a little bit and I was able to get in most of the workout (1700yds) before more lightning came and forced me out again.

Then on Friday night I was going to spend an hour and fifteen minutes on the trainer but we ended up having a late dinner so I decided to just add that time into the scheduled hour and fifteen minutes bike on Saturday morning.  Well, I got up bright and early and it was pouring out sooooo it was time for the trainer again.  I needed to do 2.5 hours but could only do 2 hours.  It was so boring.

So that was Week 2 and today is my rest day and tomorrow begins Week 3 with the 5am Master's Swim.  Here is the Week 3 Schedule (click image below to see larger version):
I hope everyone has a great week!

Thanks for Reading,


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Rendezvous With Destiny ....

With today being the day that America celebrates Independence I thought it appropriate to post the video and transcripts of a speech given by Ronald Reagan in 1964 called, "Rendezvous With Destiny" or as known in Conservative circles, "The Speech".  If you have never heard this speech please take a few minutes and read or watch, you'll be very glad you did and will feel even more patriotic as you light off the bottle rockets tonight.  Happy Independence Day everyone!




Friday, July 2, 2010

Long Weekends ....


Yes, a long weekend is just what is needed.  As you can probably tell from my lack of posts it has been an extremely busy week.  Train, Eat, Work, sleep, Work, Train, Eat ...repeat.  Basically just one big blurr right now.

Overall, despite the crazy work week, my training is going extremely well.  This is the 2nd week of the new HIM plan. I did, however, miss my first scheduled workout yesterday.  It was the 5am Master's swim class.  The alarm went off at 4:15am and I jumped right out of bed but unfortunately so did an extremely upset stomach.  Not really sure if it was something I ate or stress related or maybe a little bit of both - BUT one thing for sure was that I wasn't leaving the bathroom house for a few hours.

I was disappointed to miss the master's class because I have been really enjoying the structured workouts and the coaching.  Sometimes you just got to get over it and realize you are not a machine and things happen.  So after working all day I came home and jumped on the trainer for an hour and fifteen minutes (replacing the missed swim) and then tossed on the Brooks kicks and got in the scheduled :50 minute Z2 run - in the pouring rain!

To wrap up the rest of the week my schedule looks like this:

Friday - AM - 1:30 Z2 Foundation Ride
              PM - 2400 yds swim (1200 Fartlek Intervals)

Saturday - Brick Day - 1:30 Z2 Foundation Ride followed by :30 mins Z2 Run

Sunday - AM - Long Run - 1:10 mins Z2
                PM - 2400 yds distance swim day - 1x1800 main

Monday is supposed to be my rest day but since I have the day off of work I am thinking of making Wednesday the rest day and doing the Wednesday workouts on Monday.  Guess I will see how I feel on Monday and make this decision then!

Some other Random Thoughts:

  • Hurricane Alex missed us in Houston.  We have had some heavy rain (relegating me to indoor trainer duty - yuk) and flood warnings but the destructive winds hit well south of us.  None of us in Houston hope to ever get hit again like we did in 2008 with Hurricane IKE, but if it happens we are all ready.  That experience taught us Houstonians how to be ready for the next one.  We all have generators, flashlights, extra batteries, backup fuel, and water and food provisions. Seriously, we could probably hunker down as a community for a few months if we ever went to war domestically - you listening Mexican drug lords? I have already cleaned, oiled and fueled up my generator and revved it up for a test run.  We are ready for Hurricane season but hopeful we do not need to be!
  • We saw that movie Knight and Day with Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz.  It had some entertaining parts but overall it sort of sucked.  If things like plot, acting, directing, or overall production don't matter to you then you might like this movie.
  • An example of when training is wearing you out not just physically but mentally:  On Saturday night we were at the movie theater and the movie begins.  This is the conversation (whispered) I had with my wife: 

Jeff:  That sucks, aren't they even going to show previews?
 Annie:  What are you talking about?
 Jeff:  Previews? I like to see what new movies are coming out, how come they didn't show us any?
Annie:  **agitated voice **  They just showed like 6 of them?  We talked about them while they were showing?
Jeff:  Really? They showed previews?
Annie:  Are you okay?

  • A massive oil skimmer has FINALLY showed up in the Gulf.  It is 10-stories tall and 3.5 football fields long.  It is supposed to be able to skim a shit-ton of crude per day.  My question is if we had this ship available to us why the hell did it take 2.5 months to put it to use?
  • Speaking of the oil disaster.  Who else is really liking the way LA Governor Bobby Jindal is stepping up and kicking ass trying to contain this thing?  He has gained some serious credibility amongst us folks in the Gulf State region as a strong and capable leader.  Now if only Washington would show some of that gusto this oil spill could be a thing of the past.  Between Jindal and Chris Christie the GOP may actually have a capable candidate for Pres in 2012 - assuming the GOP doesn't some how screw this up and that is a big assumption.
  • Speaking of Washington.  How about Al Gore being brought up on charges of sexually assaulting a masseuse?  Now this lady could be doing this to get a pay out. But much like Ben Roethlisberger, what the hell was Gore thinking having a masseuse come to his hotel room after midnight when he was alone?  Really Al?  
  • And still speaking of Washington.  Did any of you what Nancy Pelosi said yesterday?  Let me paraphrase it for you:  "Unemployment benefits", Speaker Pelosi said, "It creates jobs faster than almost any other initiative you can name."   What??? Really???  How in the hell is this moron the Speaker of the House?  We need to vote all these career politicians out of office.  Here is the clip:

That is all I got today folks.  I hope everyone has a safe and happy 4th of July weekend!

Thanks for Reading,