Monday, August 22, 2016

August 2016 update

In the midst of personal Ironman training and the height of the triathlon season, this blog has been poorly maintained. I am sorry not sorry about that. Will work to rectify with more blather after the race is complete.

So, what is new?

I did the Lake Logan Half.

It was a sunny and cloudless day,
that swept in for the Lake Logan half.
Lots of folks came out to play,
But many felt humidity's wrath.
I splished and splooshed upon the swim,
And held good pace upon the bike,
But the run was not mine to win,
Though a winning medal I do would like.
And so I finished, sweaty and tired,
Pleased in my attempt to soar,
Grasping many cups of fluid,
Onto my head these I did poar.
The race was finished; I was done,
And maybe yon I'll do another one.

We had a fun time with some baseball in Asheville that night, and a visit to the local velodrome / track the day after.

The week after we raced in the Rex Wellness Wakefield sprint tri.  Bri won and I was 4th. This was shorter and so is the poem.

A super sprint is really fun
just an hour and you're done
really sweaty and really hot
And a sprint can hurt a lot.

Yar yar yar.

A couple more long rides and another 15-16 mile long run and it's taper time.

In other news, our Lightning Squad youth triathlon team is wrapping up at the Tar Heel Youth Triathlon this Sunday, August 28.  It has been fun working with the kids and we'll run both a spring and summer/fall program next year.

Junior Awesome continues to improve his aquatic skills and has been doing great in both soccer and hockey. Bri is being super mom getting him to virtually all these practices while I either get my long training in or catch up on work.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Triangle triathlon, 3 Little Pigs, Low Country Splash, OSB Boone camp reports

When you don't blog for a few weeks, the stories can get backed up!

The picture above is from a beach near Charleston. I did the 5 Mile Low Country Splash there. 
It was long. I got tired and hungry. The end.

                                                Me flexing my very pale body after finishing

3 Little Pigs Game Faces

We'll start with the 3 Little Pigs triathlon. This is a fun event and not very far away so I try to make it every year. It's a 250 yard pool swim - 15m mostly flat bike, and 5k run on flat shaded greenways. All in all a nice summertime event. I've been 1st, 2nd, 5th, and 20-ish over the years depending on how fit I am and how hot it is.  This year my fitness was good, the weather was pretty mild, and I finished 2nd with a good race overall.  Faded on the 2nd half of the run just from being life-tired.  That should be a real noun in the English dictionary.  "Hi, how are you?" "I'm great, just a bit life-tired."  Anywhoo.  They have a nice spread for kiddos and cool Wolf and Pig trophies for the winners. Yay for me. Logan showed us he could swim in the kid pool after the race. Inspiration came in the form of a little blond girl who showed Logan how to go underwater. Now we can't get him out of the pool.

Bri won, which is always fun to see!

Boone camp was awesome as usual. Since I'm in Ironman training mode, I loaded up.  We got in a 50+ miler, a 100 miler with 2 tough long climbs - Snake Mountain and Mount Jefferson, and a 12 mile long run.  Plus a 3k swim.  I was pretty tired for a few days after this.

 Top of the Firetower at Moses Cone

 Runners at Boone

Approaching Snake Mountain

The Triangle triathlon was tough. We rode with some of our athlete buddies to and from the race to make it a longer training day.  The water was way too hot - 91 degrees. I overheated a bit and never really recovered.  The 17.5 mile ride was good but not great.  Just couldn't push the legs that well.  Power wise I was 10% off the 3 Pigs level (where I felt very good).  The run was pretty awful for me. I have trouble breathing in humid conditions and just could not stay ahead of it. At 3 Little Pigs I ran 20:20 or so. At Triangle I ran 23:40 and it hurt like the dickens - cramping, gasping, oh the pain. The last time I did this race (6-7 years ago) was similar so I'll be checking out for this one despite it being so close and convenient. Until I forget the experience and decide to do it again in a few years. Stupid is as stupid does.

Ironman training is going well. I am getting in 20-30 miles per week running, and a 80-100 mile ride every 2-3 weeks. Realistically I am giving myself a 20% chance of Kona qualifying at Ironman Chattanooga.  It would take the best day my fitness can provide to make it.  There is also execution, nutrition, and dumb luck (who shows up, who has a bad day, etc) to get there. Low 10 or even sub 10 hours is what it will take in the M45-49 AG. Having a good day on the bike and holding together on the run are the key points. While I will swim well, I'm not training very hard in the swim so won't be getting a buffer gap there like I used to be able to.  Just a time/life equation that we all have to figure out.  It has and is fun training for the race but the time commitment is tough when you have little people to worry about.  Depending on the swim current, I'll be around 50 minutes.  Bike anywhere from 5:10 to 5:30 depending on the legs, and hopefully 4 hour or a bit less on the run. That's a low 10 with transitions. The real goal is to just have a good race and not hurt too much.

Next up is the Lake Logan triathlon. I had a good day last year and my goal is to either match my time going at less effort, or beat the time.  4:45. Lots of climbing on the bike so not a fast course all in all. Looking forward to a night out and about in Asheville after.

More pictures to be added as I get inspired.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

fun things Junior Awesome says (said) - Jan - May 2016

That's disgyusting

I yub you mommy

For real life, we did!

No daddy Peep, Quack and Chirp!

Let's grow a light saber / live saver farm

You and me are funny guys daddy

Yook, mommy pretty fwowers!

Then the bad emperor got dead and the dark forest left the galaxy

Can you tell me a Star Wars story daddy? A clone trooper one!

I don't need to make a pee pee. I need to make pee pee! I don't have to wash my hands cauz I didn't get pee pee on my hands.

Don't step on the yines, watch out for the fire yaba (lava)!

I sink I'm going to be first, Mommy.

I want you for to go with me.

Did he beap you?

Mommy, you're pretty awesome, but I'm even gooder.

If ( ) and ( ) were in a fight, who would win?  Why?

In a converstaion with babysitter:
sitter: What superhero is this?
L: That's Wolverine. His real name is Logan.
sitter: Oh, are you Wolverine?
L: -pausing- Yeah. Yeah, I'm really Wolverine!
sitter: Oh my gosh!
L: I'm just joking. I'm just a little boy.

from Bri: Logan wanted me to tell him it was my lucky day (for seeing his poop) but I misunderstood and said,
It’s my yucky day!
No, mommy, you’re yucky day!
That’s what I said,
No, yucky day!

Oh!!! My lucky day!

Trying to write a few down before time moves on and we're onto newer and funn-ier things.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Triple Tsilly

There is a certain amount of silliness in endurance sports. Sprinters have it simple. You train hard for a 50 or 100 yard dash. The race is over in 5-45 seconds depending on your sport.  You strive for peak velocity and maintain it through the finish. Bam! No mas senor!

Endurance athletes have no upper limit on what they consider a race. You can do a marathon. A double marathon. An extreme endurathon 100 mile run through the desert with just 1 bottle of water. An Ironman. A double Ironman. A triple Ironman. A double dipple triple Ironman!  A tour of the winery. A three day stage race. A seven day mountain grind. A twenty-one day PED fueled blast across Europe. Go go go! King of Da Dopes!

The pinnacle of this sort of silliness is climbing a mountain. You can't make it any harder to get to the top or make the top any farther away. When you get there, the space aliens who've been testing your resolve beam you up into their interstellar banana boat and off you go.

This past weekend we did our own sort of extreme event. It's called the American Triple-T. It's really a quadruple T but that name does not alliterate quite as well. You can imagine what rhymes with 'ruple'.  It's poople.  The Quadruple Poople wouldn't draw athletic people from all across the country. Or maybe it would, but the wrong type of people. You understand?

Now that I'm finished busting on this sort of thing, we had a lot of fun. The Triple T races add up to about an Ironman over a weekend of racing. The trick is coming back for more after the previous. You've got to steel yourself to get back into a cold pond and climb up some 500 foot ascents. It requires hammer balls. If you are of a timid disposition - if don't have hammer balls - you should not go to this event. It will chew you up.

We went with two couple friends who we hung out with all weekend. Having a good group around you to share in the experience makes it all the more enjoyable, So make some buddies and knock yourselves out!

Pre race carbo loading

Our crew: NC2OH

Bri and I trained well through the spring. I didn't want to do this event without being fit. Neither did she. This would be her likely one and only attempt at an Ironman-ish distance race. My goal was to see her to the finish, keep her happy and healthy, and hopefully not feel too beat up after.

Race #1 Friday evening is a super sprint. 300m swim - 3.5 mile bike - 1m run. We went easy but even going easy on the bike I was near my threshold due to the 300 foot climb. 8:06 on the run was just cruising.

Ready to roll

Race #2 Saturday morning is an olympic-ish event ~1400yd - 24m - 6.55m. The bike had 1600 feet of elevation and the run about 500 feet total gain. 2:53. Had a fun time and stuck with Bri and our friend Carrie. We intentionally ran about 8:40 pace to save legs. Rode on the easy side of things (climbs aside).

Still smiling

Lunch and a nap then back for Race #3. A longish olympic 1400yd - 27m - 6.55m with 2200 foot gain on the bike and the same run. 3:04. Legs holding up and around the same run pace. Getting tired and mildly pissy.

Me running at some point

Our pals

Race #4. Sunday morning Half-Iron.  2800+ feet elevation on the bike, double the run to 13.1 and 1000 feet. This is the doozy.  If you went too hard on Saturday, or came into the weekend poorly trained, or are prone to cracking up mentally, today is your day to suck donkey kong.  I was both well trained and hadn't done anything terribly hard to this point so felt fine, other than that I was about to do a half-Ironman after doing two olympic distance triathlons the day before. Completely normal, right. Not utterly batshit at all. Keep telling yourself that.

And it was friggin' cold. The water temp was not higher than 62. The air was colder at 48 or so.  The people around us were colder, less happy, less chipper. I wonder why. Oh yes, we're all idiots and we're having a giant idiot party. Yay.

Penguins on the march

Bri and I were mumbling and stumbling for the first 10 miles of the bike.  After this we warmed up and got going. Talk about a slow start. I could talk about my normalized power, but your eyes would glaze over, so I'll skip it.  We had a nice ride and got it done with just a couple stops to pee, take pictures, and adjust things.

Pretending to be excited for another ride

The half

Still smiling after that bike ride!

We held up on the run and Bri was a tough cookie.  She dropped the hammer for the last 2 miles of the run and we cracked 6-hr for the half with a 1:56 or so run split.  In the end we finished as the 4th coed team. This gets you a slap on the back and a cookie. Congrats!

The half run

But seriously, they give you some nice swag. A finisher's jacket. A cool medal. A lifetime of memories. And so on.

The finale

We are happy

In the end, our combined team time was 24:53.  That's 24 hours and 53 minutes. In a weekend. Divide by two for individual glory numbers. The winning coed team did around 20:40 and the first individual was about 10 hours.

So, in summary, if you're a lunatic triathlete that likes to share horror stories with other lunatic triathletes, check it out. Otherwise, stick with your normal long distance events and tell yourself you're not missing anything.

The end.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Time time time

It's April! No wait, it's May!  It's go time! Winter is gone spring is here no wait summer is just around the corner. Take a deep breath smell the flowers the flowers are gone!

It is flying by. Getting faster, even. I do what I can to soak it all in. My goal is to keep up with one blog post a month but even that can be difficult. Anyway. Life is good, training is going well, fun with Junior Awesome continues to be mostly fun with just a wee bit of lad-itude thrown in there.  Our first triathlon of the season is this Saturday with the Inside Out Sports Beaverdam olympic distance tri. I hope to feel good. If I can feel not tired (from lack of sleep) I'll be happy.

Pictures of the past few weeks, in mildly random order:

Easter Egg hunting day! 
 Some time preparing for American Ninja Warrior

 Junior Awesome and I planted daffodil bulbs in late winter - they actually grew!

 Our first Lego set

 It's Baseball season! I mean, cotton candy season!


 Triple brick teamwork

 The triple crew

Springtime kids Healthy Running series - 50yd dash

 Glennie's birthday bash

 Junior Awesome in the driver's seat

 Go mommy! Bri runs the Tobacco half

 Birthday pinata

 Spring cookout

Serene moment on the Neuse river trail
Rockin out!