Yup... PC has a Coach. I finally decided to go with one. Thought it'd be a great chance to learn a lot and obviously improve.
Went with the Training Bible (TB), they are one of the St. Louis Tri Club sponsors and I got a discount. Plus I met Coach way back in Feb or Mar when she came and gave a presentation on TB to the Club members.
Coach is really cool... she's done a few Ironman races (need to ask her exactly how many). She just did IM Idaho and did awesome. She's also done some HIM and she's placed in her age group in some. She's also a Level 1 USAT coach, Level 3 USA Cycling coach, certified personal trainer, and certified spinning instructor... and of course she is in the St. Louis area so that makes it easier. Pretty awesome eh?
I am very excited to be honest. This is going to help me get better and learn about training and racing. We started officially last Thu and Coach immediately gave me a work-out calendar for the next 2 weeks. She based on a few forms she gave me, I filled them out, then she made my training program. It looks harder than I thought - harder meaning longer work-outs.... longer distances, etc.... I guess harder to what I've been doing.
My 2 "A" races are getting close: accenture Chicago Triathlon (Olympic) is in less than 2 months and Ironman 70.3 Cancun is in less than 3 months...
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
(This pic was taking while I was starting my 2nd loop)
I've been dreading writing my race report.... but here it goes:
Sunday, June 15 (Father's day) I woke up at 4:30am in Lawrence, KS and got ready to go to Clinton Lake. My friends from STL picked me up at the hotel and we drove the 25ish min ride.
Parked and walked to race site to get body marked and set up transition area.
Got my 995 number on both arms and legs and 34 on my right calf.
Went to see Diabla (my bike) and started getting all my stuff together.... I was a bit nervous, anxious and excited. Got it all set up and ready, grabbed my wetsuit and walked towards the lake. I missed the professionals start (6:45am) because I stopped at the bathroom... D'oh!
Put my wetsuit on and got in the water, swam for a bit and peed again... :)
The announcer went: 30 seconds... later: 15... then: 10.... and: 5... 4... 3... 2... (horn) the M 30-34 age group wearing PINK swimming caps started the 1.2 miles swim at 7:06am.
Swim was pretty good, no problems at all. Tried to draft a couple of times... but there were too many people so I did my own thing. - Swim time: 38min 14sec -
Got out of the lake, took goggles and PINK cap off and started taking wetsuit off while I jogged to transition area. A soon as I got there, turned my Garmin on, took wetsuit off, put socks, shoes, helmet, sunglasses and Garmin on and headed towards the bike exit area. - T1 time: 3min 30sec -
Started the HILLY 56 mile bike course.... but when I say hilly I mean H.I.L.L.Y. I'm just going to quote event co-director Ryan Robinson: "we did the elevation chart on it, (the bike course)it's actually one of the hilliest courses in North America that Ironman offers." Thank God I did some hill training because it paid off. The bike is my weakest leg but it went better than expected. I felt great the whole time, nutrition worked excellent. I trained with Perpetuem by Hammer Nutrition. It took me a bit to get used to the flavor/taste but on race day I had no problems. I set my Garmin to beep every 25 min and will have 1-2 sips each time. - Bike time: 3hrs 10min -
Returned to transition, got off Diabla and jogged to get my running stuff. Pretty easy and simple... got my shoes and visor on and off I went. - T2 time: 1min 45sec -
Started the 2 loop run and here's when the craziness started. I was still feeling pretty good.. a couple of minor aches here and there but nothing huge, normal stuff. Walked through the water stations... had either H2O or Gatorade and I poured some water on my head and back each time. They had sponges as well which I grabbed to cool down. By mile 8-9 the sky started to get grey and then almost black.... the wind started to pick up and then it was hard and strong.... and then lightning started. When I was in my second loop, running by transition and the finish area (around mile 11) suddenly three volunteers stood in front of us and started routing us towards the finish chute going: "sorry guys but the course has been closed due to bad weather"
It happened so fast.... totally unexpected..... I followed these two other guys and we crossed the finish line... I heard my name, this girl gave me a medal, this other guy gave me water and some other made me stop to get the chip.... I was like... What just happened?!??!? It took me a bit to realize it... I did not do 70.3? I saw my wife and kids coming towards me all happy and proud, taking pictures and that... I was still confused... in disbelieve..... I kept having this thought: OMG, I did not do 70.3! I had about 2 miles to go..... 2 more miles!!! Even now as I type I pause and think over and over again.... I did not do 70.3!! How disappointing eh?
I was standing there with my wife and kids.... looking at other athletes going through similar frustration as I was.... a girl grabbed the medal and threw it on the floor... another girl was crying, a guy started yelling at the volunteers.... it was aweful!
I thought: I am going to go and run 2 more miles! - but I didn't think it was fair on my family.. they have been waiting there for a little over 5 hrs and a half and it was going to start raining in any minute. I just told them: let me go grab my bike and let's go... went and took all my gear, started to rain and we walked to the car. While I walked to the car the "what if" thoughts kept coming to my head... I saw all these other athletes walking to the parking lot upset... sad... mad...
- Run time: 1hr 42min... NOT! that is with out the last 2 miles I still had to go. -
So my "official" posted time is: 5:36:36 I would add 18 minutes to that, so I guess I could say my time was (or could have been) 5 hours and 54 minutes. I think I would have done it under 6 hrs.
In a nutshell:
I know they did what they did for our own safety but then again, while I was leaving there were people still running.... go figure!
The Expo... eh! Small and unimpressive for an Ironman event.
The race t-shirt... a size - or two - bigger than what they truly were.... for $200+ registration fee? not impressed.
The volunteers were very nice, I personally did not have any problems. They were very supportive.
Would I go back to Lawrence again for this race? NO FREAKING WAY!
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
- The pic above is the famous "Manneken Pis" in Brussels... cool eh? :)
Ok....so Sun I go back to from Escheden (Holland) to Brussels (Belgium), which took about 4 hrs by train. Arrived at Brussels South station and walked to the hotel I was staying (5 min walk). Grabbed my suitcase and went to a different hotel , the one my company was paying for. Then I basically worked from Mon to Fri... bunch of lunches and dinners - great food by the way - and I would go to bed at 11 - 12 at night... that plus the 7 hrs time difference killed me.
My plan was to hit the gym at the hotel, and when I asked where the gym was the receptionist tells me it was downstairs and it was 25 euros to use it.... A DAY!!!! That's about 40 bucks each time.... You kidding me??? I couldn't believe it. That whole week I only ran ONE day... 4.5 miles.... that was it! So in 10 days I only ran once!
Came back and had only 2 more weeks before race day, and speaking of coming back... the flight back was the worst flight ever. Brussels - Newark was fine, but Newark - St. Louis... OMG! It's way too long to type it plus just remembering it makes me mad.... in a nutshell: I was at Newark airport for 12 hours! Our flight kept getting delayed and after 12 hrs (and being in the airplane for 30 min and back to the pre-boarding area) they told us the flight was cancelled. Stayed in Newark and came back on Sun at 7am.... It was so tiring.
The next day (Monday) I went back to my training routine and followed my training plan (last week):
Mon: Weights (legs and biceps)
Tue: 2,400 meters swim
Wed: 1.5 hrs ride + 4 mile run brick
Thu: 5 mile run
Fri: 45 mile ride + 3 mile run brick
Sat: 30 min OWS + 50 mile (very windy) ride brick
Sun: 5 mile run
And this has been my last / taper week:
Tue: easy 4 mile run
Wed: 45 min ride (Today - used the gym spinning bike)
Thu: will do 700 - 800 meters swim
Sat: Off (I'll do an easy work out)
SUN: IRONMAN 70.3 KANSAS
So that's that.... can't believe it's time....
Sunday, June 8, 2008
....So Fri morning woke up a bit before 6am and got ready to go to the train station in Brussels to catch my 7:51am train to Amsterdam.
After about a 2 hrs train ride I arrived to Amsterdam Central Station. Isn't crazy? in 2 days I saw 3 countries! Here in the States you drive 2 hrs and you are still in the same county.... or maybe state... still though!
Anyway, walked to DeBijenkorf, a mall where a friend from Ecuador works at. He gave me a map and a metro pass for the day and suggested a few places to go see... Walked all over the place (I guess that could count as a work out.... I did walk a ton)
Amsterdam is a really great city, you go from the flower markets to Ann Frank house to the coffee shops to the canals to the Heineken brewery to the thousands of bikes to the famous red light district... so much to see in so little time.
I absolutely loved how everybody there rides their bikes everywhere.... no matter their age, their sex, their size.... girls all dressed up with high heels, older people, families even... saw this lady on a bike with one kid in the front, another one in the back, she had one hand on the handle bar and the other one was carrying a big painting!
After walking for a long long time.... did a boat-tour which takes you around the canals in the city all the way to the Amstel river and back. Really cool and interesting.
Went to bed at around 1am completely tired and sore!
Sat woke up, took the metro to the train station and grab the Escheden train to go visit my friend from Ecuador Alex, her husband and their little girl. I had a fantastic time with them, the baby is the cutest ever and they were super nice. Sun morning headed to the train station once again to return to Brussels. Still... no training at all....
To be continued...
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Wow.... I haven't written my blog for a while.... missed it!
Back from the trip... came back last Sun, June 1st. Training-wise things didn't go as expected.. AT ALL!, in fact... I might be f'ed!
Went there thinking I'll use the hotel gym... run in the city... swim at the hotel's pool.. etc. Yeah, none of that happened!!
Arrived in Brussels on Thu, May 22 - after a 7+ hrs flight. Went to the hotel, dropped luggage and drove to Cologne, Germany. 2 hrs drive and we were in another country (gotta love Europe). The city is really nice, it's the 4th most important city in Germany and it was bigger than I thought. The city has a very impressive cathedral, it took over 600 years to complete it! Crazy eh? Also, inside the Cathedral they have The Shrine of the Three Kings, where the Three Wise Men are buried.
Went back to Brussels on Thu night, got stuff ready for another trip the next day and went to bed at past 1am.... training? NADA
To be continued....