Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Yay!! A Race report!!

Finally a race report. But not for me.  My wife did the Steamboat Lake Sprint triathlon on Sunday and did a fantastic job. We showed up Sunday morning and were told we had to park on the road outside of the state park where the race was being held  Not a big issue except there were 350 other athletes who had to park along the same road..the walk to transition turned out to be about a mile including a nice trek up a dirt hill. Kristine counted this as her warm up.

We went to the transition area and Krisitne put her bike on the rack.  Of course a triathlon is not complete without a siting of one of the numerous douche baguses.  Fortunately we got to see one up close..right across from Krsitine. The DB basically was taking up three spaces..laying out his towel and gear to cover as much space as possible.  I moved Kristine's bike over and the back tire hovered over his gear...Are you going to leave the bike there the DB asked? Well good morning to you also..and yes..the bike will remain there since there are other people that need to get on this rack.  And I outweigh you by 100 pounds and will break you in two just for fun if you touch the bike (I thought and did not say). Luckily the rest of the rack mates were super cool and even gave us an underwear show.

Well it definitely looked like underwear

Anyway Kristine set up her stuff and was excited to get started. (I had forgotten (on purpose) to show her the course profile with the hills on the bike course and the hills and single track on the run course..)

The swim was 800 meters and her first in the open water with a wetsuit.  Like most first time open water swimmers my wife was not looking forward to entering the water without the safety of the black lines painted on the pool bottom.  And of course the wetsuit added to the anxiety.  I wrote about her first effort in trying to get into a wetsuit. An effort that did not end well for her or for me.  Like most first timers she thought the wetsuit was super constricting especially on the arms..which adds to the anxiety.  She did a few swims at the gravel pond and Bear Creek and had similar issues with the arms and feeling constricted.  Thus we decided to order her a sleeveless wetsuit.  We of course went to Kompetitive Edge and ordered a Blue Seventy sleeveless.

A quick review on the Blue Seventy suits.  I love them.   My first wetsuit was an Xterra which was wonderful. It fit well..was long enough and seemed to be very flexible.  It was also very inexpensive. However, the Xterras rip..almost every time you put one on or take it off you put another hole in the suit.  I switched to a Tyr Hurricane 3 last year which got rave reviews.  I hated it.  It seemed to run small and it was definitely shorter.  Apparently the elite triathletes like the shorter suits..I did not.  The thing just did not fit..although you could tell it was built much better than the Xterra.  This year I bought a Blue-Seventy Reaction.  I love it. It is built extremely well and fit like my Xterra..pretty much the best of both worlds. 

Kristine was in the last wave and was concerned that she was going to be the absolute last person out of the water.  The lake was gorgeous and calm.

Getting out of the water.
Much to K's surprise she was out of the water in 17:00 which was about 4 to 5 minutes faster than she thought. She was also not the last out of the water and passed a few people on the swim. She made a quick transition and was off on the bike.

While she was gone on the bike I bothered the other spectators. I found one woman alone and found out that she was separated and thinking about divorce.  I then found out she lived about a mile from my office. is my card.  Unfortunately I got a little too much of her life that she hadn't worked in 20 years and really didn't think she should have to..and that she had to down size from a Hummer... I told her that she seemed to be doing amazingly well for what she had been through and moved on.

While Kristine was out on the bike 5 time Ironman Champion Heather Gollnick came in to transition. I think this woman knows how to run.

She ended up winning the women's overall.

Kristine came back from the bike and actually had a smile on her face. Considering the fact that the course was very hilly and that the run had to go up the same hill she had just come down I was relieved she wasn't screaming obscenities at me.

After she left I perched on the shore and looked across the lake at the trail that the runners had to return on. 

K across the way coming back

Running the single track
Kristine crossed the finish line and ended up taking second place in the Athena Divsion!!  Athena is greek for "Woman with boobs and hips".

Overall the race was great. However there was room for improvement.  First of all I forgot my hat so my head was completely sunburned.  Second I did not hydrate nearly enough while spectating.  Also my race day nutrition was sorely lacking in protein. I relied almost exclusively on this

Luckily I did buy the family size bag so had enough for the whole race.  I should have taken all of the pretzels out and replaced with beef jerky..but overall the m&ms were pretty good..especially the shortbread cookies.

Monday I actually exercised myself..doing a little mountain biking in Steamboat.  If you get the chance you have to mountain bike..there are tons of trails for all levels of difficulty.  Here is a link to some of the trails...Steamboat Bike trails.  And here is a link to the Bike Guide which contains descriptions and maps of the numerous trail systems.  I decided to do the Emerald Mountain Trail System. It was fantastic..even for a fat ass like me.  I am definitely planning on doing an entire day of riding up there at some point..maybe a weekend.

My Wisconsin shirt so I know where I was born and my name on my bike so I don't forget

Trail overlooking Steamboat

I know everyone is asking..did you get hurt.  Honestly..I thought I separated my other shoulder.. I was coming down a very steep incline getting a lot of speed when the trail went from double track to single. I was flying and at the last moment I thought..hell I better walk this.  So I stopped my bike and I tried to get my leg over the seat. Unfortunately I have the flexibility of a mighty oak . I started to feel my groin start to stretch in places where it shouldn't and somehow while I was doing this I got an excruciating pain in my much so I actually fell to the ground.  As I was laying there holding my shoulder I tried to come up with a story to tell everyone..unfortunately the pain was so bad I couldn't think straight..and when I saw my wife I told her the truth.  She has taken my mountain bike away from me.

We spent the rest of the day tubing.  I actually got some good "before" pictures of were really fat..before you got really really fat!  I was also supposed to destroy the below video.

 Don't worry ..we found her about 1/2 mile downstream and she was just fine.

Lastly I want to give a big shout out to my friends Doug and Greg who did Ironman Racine 70.3 on Sunday.  Apparently the swim in Lake Michigan was more than a challenge..but both of the guys Pr'd the course and both going under 6 hours.  And anyone in southeastern Wisconsin looking for a Triathlon Club check out Strive in Racine. 

OH..and one last shout out to Jen of From fat to finish line who did her first triathlon.  Way to go!

Jen with her medal

Happy Trails everyone.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Another good week? Almost..

This week there were a lot of positives.  We will gloss over Monday since it was crap.

Tuesday turned out pretty good. My wife and I met with Dina from  Fuel4mance to discuss nutrition. I like Dina..but I don't think she quite understands me yet..she has a hard time deciphering whether I am being serious or not. I wanted to tell her to meet at McDonald's but didn't want to scare her Tokyo Joes was the place.  The meeting was very productive and also served as marital therapy.  My wife and I  discussed each of our hurdles in the nutrition battle and apparently the biggest hurdle for each of each other.  Part of the problem is that we do not like any of the same things.  For example..vegetables. I do not care for them but my wife loves them. Even the ones we do agree on..we really don't.  I love me some canned green beans sitting in that salt juice..water..whatever it is.  My wife actually likes fresh green beans.  I could eat the same thing over and over everyday..while my wife wants variety.  Unfortunately the stuff we do agree on is the crap food.  Pizza..mashed potatoes..etc.  We don't even like our food prepared the same.  I think luke warm is plenty hot for any food while my wife somehow enjoys food that will sear the inside of your mouth.  Mini raviolis are perfectly acceptable out of the can at room temperature and spam is fine just slicing it up and wiping the gel off....just sayin.  Also, if one of us was feeling like crap food we would tend to convince the other to eat it as opposed to fighting about it.

I think Dina was having a problem just trying to find foods that were healthy and we both agreed on.  Dina put together a calorie target for us along with targets for the macronutrients (protein, fat and carbs).  The Dina plan plays down carbs quite a bit allowing for larger percentages of protein and fats.  I got my calorie limit and thought it was per meal..not the day.  We are also going to track our calories online.  I requested that we do this just to understand our calorie intakes.  So far all we have been doing is tracking and trying to stay in line with the calorie guidelines.and it seems to be working. This week I am down from 238 to 231.  I think the sheer embarrassment of actually having to log.."snack..large slush, two corn dogs and large tater tots"...has made me much more cognizant of what I am eating. I know that I also eat out of stress..I frequently go out to lunch on work days just to keep from strangling the staff.  After speaking with Dina I now understand that strangling the staff would not only provide me with exercise but would keep me from eating unneeded calories. (Dina actually suggested lunch time workouts).

Saturday I worked the Kompetiive Edge tent at the Boulder Peak Triathlon.  Despite the heat it was actually a good time. I met some new people..other athletes and some of the reps.  And of course I met two guys wearing Bucky Badger shirts as well as another woman who swam at Wisconsin on scholarship.  Go Bucky!  Yes..we are everywhere.

The Newton rep I met tried to convince me to come back to their shoes after my one year hiatus.


I promised I would try the new line..which it just happens is being rolled out at Kompetitive Edge on Thursday evening.
 If you are interested in Newtons, KE on Thursday will be the place to demo a pair and have your questions answered by the professionals.

Today was also quite fun and productive. My daughter and I started the day with swimming. We showed up at the rec center and the lady behind the desk told us that there was no swimming until noon.  I asked if the schedule was wrong since I had checked it online and it said that lap swimming was from 10 to 12.  She looked at me incredulously and said lap swimming was open and then looked at my 5 year old and she lap swimming?  My daughter without skipping a beat said..I have a triathlon to train for.  It's my third race and second triathlon.  I just looked at the woman and with all seriousness I said. She's 5 years old..of course she swims laps! Do you think she goes to the pool to play? ..she has to get better to get that scholarship to Wisconsin. The lady just rolled her eyes and let us in to swim.  My daughter picked up her abekat anarchy back pack..put it on, put her blue seventy goggles on her head and followed me to the pool.  I had to do everything to keep from laughing.

My daughter has been taking lessons from a friend of ours and I was amazed at the improvement in her freestyle.  I asked her to swim 25 yards for me and she asked if I wanted her to breathe every four strokes or every three. (I breathe every two).  She then swam the 25 yards and then another 75 yards of back stroke.  (LOL..Is my daughter going to swim laps?)  We need to work on her endurance since after the first 25 yards of freestyle she is a little out of breath and form on the return 25.  She then told me she needed to get a kick board to practice kicking. jumped out of the pool and returned with a board for me and her.  I usually don't do kicking drills since I don't use my legs. I am not flexible..I kick from my knees and not my hips and I actually will go backwards using a kick board. However, to make my daughter happy I kicked 25 yards with her.  At the end of the length she looks at me and says..You are kicking wrong. You need to do it with straight legs. You are kicking from your knees.  Really?  We then did a few more lengths and she says... Ok. I need to use fins..jumps out of the pool and gets her fins to use.  She then proceeds to swim freestyle to the end of the pool and back faster than I did when I started swimming two years ago.  wth?  And I never use training gear n the pool...for two first coach Suzanne Atkinson from Steel City Endurance convinced me to swim train using the Total Immersion method..which doesn't use a lot of swim tools. (And by the way..TI worked awesome for me)  and two..I look like a total idiot using the gear.  However, my daughter looked like a pro. 

Much to my wife's chagrin I decided to go mountain biking this afternoon. I made sure my phone was fully charged so when I crashed I would be able to watch a couple of episodes of Archer on my new Netflix account while I waited for help to arrive.  I went up South Table mountain..but by a different route then when we hiked it last week.  It was a little bit of a climb to the top but nothing bad.  Once on top there are actually some nice wide paths that are fairly flat. The trails would be great for beginners or old men like me.  They would also be nice for running.  Miraculously I didn't crash the bike once.

Trail up the side

Nice gravel trails
Some of the single track

View of Denver from the top
Once I was done with the ride I took my daughter to the park to play where we witnessed humanity at its finest. First, we saw a pizza delivery guy pull into the parking lot and walk up hill to this family which was seated at a picnic table about 300 yards from where the guy had to park.  The pizza guy delivered the pizza and as he passed us he told us that the family had given him a $1 tip.  LOL.  It was incredible to me that someone did not go down to the parking lot to meet the pizza guy and then gave him $1.00 for his efforts. Wth?

Then, as I was watching my daughter play I struck up a conversation with two parents (I am using this term loosely)  Cletus and Bobbie Sue were scratching themselves (Seriously) and trying to find a lighter for their smokes. I asked them what grade their kids were in.  They said the one my daughter was playing with was in second grade. I told them my daughter was starting kindergarten (Yes I did this with pride since my daughter was two inches taller) They is tall..Is her father tall?  WTF!! Really dude? I informed him that I was the father and even though I am obviously of advanced age I was able to properly raise my daughter.  They then changed the subject and started telling me how wonderful Waldo books are since they could give them to their kids and they could leave them alone for hours.  My guess is that I could give the Waldo books to these two parents and leave them alone for hours.

I decided it was best to leave the park and we went to Papa Murphys to pick up a Chicken Delite pizza.  Wow..I thought it was wrong ordering it ..but in print it even looks worse.  Much to my chagrin the pizza with the sun dried tomatoes, veggies and chicken with garlic sauce was actually very tasty.  But I digress.  I park the car and am letting my daughter out of the passenger side when another care parks right next to us.  I hear the daughter saying to the mother. I can't go in,,I'm not wearing pants.  The mother says..your shirt is long enough..just don't bend over.  Really?  Of course the two of them are going in to Papa Murphys.  And the daughter is probably 16 or 17 wearing a long shirt that goes down to mid thigh.  How are you not wearing pants?!?!  And how did you drive someplace with your mother without pants??? And how did your mother just act like this was an everyday occurrence?  Obviously she was within the guidelines of  "No shirt, No Shoes, No Service"  But aren't pants a given?

Needless to say I was glad to get home and enjoy some pizza with my wife and daughter.  I was even more overjoyed to hear my daughter yell to me while I was downstairs...Hurry up Dad..Bob Roll is on!  It's nice to have normal.

Happy Trails.

Monday, July 8, 2013

woo hoo! no injuries this week.

Warning..this post contains pictures which may be problematic to those with weak intestinal fortitude.  Just sayin. 

The separated shoulder did not turn out to be that big of a deal. It did hurt a bit and it has kept me from swimming but I was able to get some biking in. I also started running again on July 4. In fact the whole family went for a hike/run up South Table Mountain by my house.  South Table is actually a mesa..thus it has a flat "Table Top". The hike up the Lubahn trail is pretty quick and fairly easy.  It is not conducive to mountain biking but there are other trail heads which are.  The entire hike up to the top of "Castle Rock', the prominent out cropping where a dance club was in the 1920's is about a mile in length and about 30 minutes taking it slow. Interestingly enough Castle Rock was also used by the KKK in the 1920's for cross burnings and meetings..they weren't too keen on my Irish Catholic brethren coming to Golden.

Once on top there are numerous unofficial trails to hike or run along the flat top.  Although this sign says you should not run or jog in the area. lol. (I have yet to see a mountain lion on South Table..although I have seen numerous rattle snakes and coyotes)

Trail Head Just to the left of the pink house in the picture below
Picture of Castle Rock from residential trailhead
Picture of South Table from the can see why it is called "table" "Castle Rock" is in the very bottom on teh right hand side

Looking back over Golden from the trail

Old stairs leading up to the top of Castle Rock where the dance hall was once upon a time

Toughest part of trail

 I should use South Table for training a bit more. It is near the house and the hike up is a good warmup for running on the trails on the top.  However, I am concerned I would not be able to out run any of the wildlife  up top..although..again..the motivation to run from a pack of coyotes or a mountain lion might be beneficial to me.

I may be changing the title of this blog to Train Old Guy Train!  Age is catching up with me. It is now taking me longer to shave my ears and eyebrows then it does my head.  I also went out last night for the first time in  a long time.  Ended up getting home at 11:00 and spending the next hour and a half on the bathroom floor barely able to move and  wondering if I was going to die. It was one of those toilet and garbage can situations.  I wish I could tell you I was out drinking but unfortunately all I had was a strawberry shake and movie popcorn.  Apparently God is playing the cruelest joke of all on a Wisconsin boy by slowly making me lactose intolerant with age.  What the heck!! I was originally booted out of Wisconsin for not liking if I can't eat dairy they aren't even going to let me back to visit.

My daughter will be looking for a new home soon.  She has started to taunt me.  We did a family track night this evening which was fun...for a while.  First she rode her bike around the track while I ran and she informed me of her speed and prowess on the bike every time she passed.  Then when she was done riding she ran with me and informed me that she was pretty quick and I was not.  She then did a Usain Bolt pose. (The night before we watched a documentary on Bolt so she got the pose down pretty good).
My daughter taking off in pursuit

The catch....taunting me
still laughing..
 Yes..she is getting a little smug.  The other day she was cleaning her room and I was bothering her..she told me to stop because she had to focus.  I asked her if Daddy was focused and she said...not when you ride your bike since you always crash.  I hope she enjoys community college.

My wife joined in the taunting so I decided to punish them in the the worst way possible. I completed my track workout shirtless.  Yes..evil..but they deserved it.  I'm actually surprised the camera was able to focus with the shine coming off the pale white. 

HEY!! It's Michael Chiklis fat older brother!

I actually did not have my heart rate monitor with me.. I was just using the strap to keep everything from bouncing.  Amazingly enough..with how bad the pictures are the first thing I said to myself was..damn..that left quad is looking awesome.  I am so glad I am a guy and can focus on the one positive.

This week the training will be running and more running..biking and nutrition.  I am meeting with Dina from Fuel4mance to see if she can tweak my eating a bit.  I'll let everyone know how that goes.  I am down 2 lbs from last week to 236..which is a positive. But I actually took body measurements.  Let's just say baby got back.

 Oh..I also subscribed to Netflix and the first english program I watched (After watching the Korean series Killer Girl K and the Japanese movie Battle Royale..awesome..makes hunger games look like a school picnic) was the documentary Fat Sick and Nearly Dead  (There is actually a link on the page to hulu where you can watch the movie for free) is about a guy who basically goes on a juicing "fast" and loses a ton of weight and feels just fine and dandy. (The guy is also a millionaire who lives in Australia and is single..which may help his happiness a bit). But there is also a truck driver from Iowa that he meets and the second half of the movie follow his story using juicing. (A much more sympathetic fellow). After watching the movie I thought about doing the juicing fast myself.  I contacted my friends Angela and Jen about it..since they make documentaries..and as such would be experts on anything that was in a documentary.  I was informed that the juicing route would not work for me since Sunny D would not qualify as a vegetable juice.  (we'll see what Dina has to say about that)

 Hope everyone had a wonderful Fourth of July . Happy Trails and enjoy the summer.