Sunday, December 30, 2007

Some People Think...

... that unless you have a fever, you're ok to work out. I tend to buy into whatever theory directly suits what I want to do.

So yesterday I decided that I wasn't going to be sick anymore... that I was going to go about my day just like I would normally... you know... honeydo things, play with the kids, wash the dog, maybe rake up some leaves and remove the doggy droppings from the grass. I also thought, "HEY! I KNOW... I'll bundle myself up and hop on the trainer and SWEAT this crud out!" Great idea right? So I put on a whole bunch of layers... including two hats, gloves, and a down jacket and hopped on the trainer. I got to watch both IM Wisconsin AND St. Croix... had them taped but hadn't watched them yet. Actually felt really good to sweat a bit. I got off the trainer, drenched, after over an hour of spinning at a steady cadence of 95 with my HR never getting over 145 BPM. I felt SO good that I grabbed my oldest son and we took Aggie to the dog wash... we love a clean baby puppy. After we got home and I sat down and stopped moving around... it hit me like a ton of bricks! I could physically feel my sinuses filling with guke and my head trying to compensate for the building pressure in my ears... ouch!

So guess what I did today? I stayed in bed. Yup. Good times. Luckily for me Kathryn went to the store, bought all the fixins, came home and made some chicken n ginger soup. She's a saint. I'm feeling quite a bit better as I sit here writing this... I'm hoping for the best. All I know is that this has got to pass and its got to pass fast.


p.s. Coach Matt... I'm still not scared of you... even if I am sick!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Ya Gotta Be KIDDIN ME!!!

I just can't believe it! Here I am... our guests our gone... the house is quiet... I'm on vacation with plenty of time to train and have fun.... but NOOOOOOOO... I'm sick! Nothing too special like the mumps or typhoid... just a head cold that makes you just miserable enough to NOT stay in bed all day! Yeah... cool huh!? So I'm consuming massive amounts of vitamin C, suckin down Zinc lossenges, hydrating, drinking LOTS of tea, etc. etc. etc. I really don't have the time for this... so I'm confident that it'll be over by today! Somebody gimme a, "Pooooooor baaaaaaaaaabyyyyy".


Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Flippin X-mas

I have the WORST food hang-over you could ever imagine! I'm fat, lazy... and pretty durn happy actually. The entire family came to our pad for the festivities and my wife Martha Stewarted her ASS off... resulting in much bloating and gastrointestinal discomfort due to excessive caloric intake. Good times! The only regret that I have is that my sister and her crew weren't able to join us this year... maybe next...

In the last few days I've visited the pool with my buddy Scott once... putting in 2,700 yds. I've rode my trainer once... putting in just over an hour and watching Ironman Wisconsin... and have run... once... from the garage to the front door... a total of 15 ft. max... I kept my heart rate well within zone 1.

Lookin forward to receiving my first training plan from Coach Matt Lieto and getting started on some serious base January 1st. Matt keeps trying to scare me... but let me reiterate... I'm not scared of some big-shot pro-triathlete momma's boy. (*whisper* boy do I hope he doesn't read this)


Thursday, December 20, 2007

Sometimes Ya Just Gotta Laugh....

Because really... it's just SO much better for you!

X-mas prep is of about complete! We're hosting this year which ought to a LOT of fun! You know family... love em, hate em... either way they're here to stay and we're going to have a great time! Took the crew out to get a tree at Northern Lights this year! Even Aggie came and she had a BALL!

OK! Catch ya up on what's been happening triathlon-wise over the last few weeks. While it is the off-season... I'm still unclear about how to exactly define that... I've swum roughly 21,000 yds in since my last post. This is averaging 3,000 yds/pool visit 3 times/wk for 3 weeks minus 6,000 yds b/c of my week out with the black plague and there you have your total! (Check my Math... I was an English major in colige) As a result, I don't think I've EVER felt more comfortable in the water. Really cool. Now having said that... I'm not entirely sure if I'm any faster. I suppose it might be time for another test set with Coach Gina! Here's what I did today:
  • 700 yd warm-up (200 swim, 200 pull, 300 kick)
  • 6X200 yds on 3:00
  • 500 pull with paddles
  • 500 pull w/out paddles
  • 100 cool-down ez
  • Total Distance: 3,000 yds
Good times. Good times. That's similar to the type of workouts I've been doing in the pool.

My run has been non-existent. Seriously. The first time I've run in the last 2 months was last Sunday. I did a 20 min aerobic run. My toe hurts. Enough said. I talked with Coach Matt about the lack of running and he basically said, "Yeah... don't sweat it." So I'm not gonna.

I've done a few rides and a LOT of trainer time. ALL of the rides have been in a low aerobic zone and I've concentrated on keeping my cadence up between 95 to 100 rpm... apparently this is more efficient... but it's also a learned skill. When I started focusing on keeping my cadence up it felt really odd to be turning over the pedals that fast... now it seems "normal". Bike fitness is coming along but still has a long way to go before I get where I want to be. Patience... patience... patience...

I think the whole focus of this "off-season" stuff is to make sure you give your head a break from the intensity yet to keep your body moving and active so that when you launch into training in the next season.... ya don't kill yourself. Mission accomplished! Coach Matt is starting me on what he calls, "The Program" (ominous isn't it?), January 1st. I'm actually really really ready to get started!

Aggie update: Super Perfect Angel Fantasy Puppy has regressed. Yeah... I knew it was too good to be true... she's now decided that its o.k. to pee on our floor. Yeah. Joy. As my wife says, "She's a puppy Rob. She's going to figure it out." Thank you oh wise one. I've had many proud parent moments as I'm yelling expletives at the puppy in front of the kids... yeah... cool huh? Geesh. As if I didn't have enough to humble me... thanks puppy!


Wednesday, December 19, 2007


is what I've felt like for the last few weeks or so. A bit dramatic? Of COURSE it is... that's just part of Rob. See... I've always leaned toward the depressive arts. It's part of who I am however annoying that may be. The weather, the flu, the puppy sucking the life outta me AND I got some terrible news about my brother today too... freakin figures. ANYWAY... thanks for the emails and the comments... believe it or not it has helped.

I'm a bit weary of the dark pit I've fallen into... I think I'll climb out now...


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Skinny Guys Don't Do Cold...

So the ride that I went on with my buddy Scott last Sunday was pretty freakin miserable. The temp was around 32 degrees and I haven't quite figured out exactly how to dress properly. Then again, maybe being a bit cold is unavoidable in weather like that. Anyway... I'm not a big fan of freezing my ass off. Then again... maybe I'm just a freakin candy-ass pansy whiner baby. Yeah... that's probably it. So Scott and I covered 28 miles in about an hour and a half. Though I am bitching about the cold... it was really nice to be out in the fresh air with a good friend shootin the shit and spinning some mileage.

In other news, the LifeCycle Tri-Team is slowly but surely coming together. We've had an initial meeting with the "pilot" group and I'm meeting a couple of members for lunch today to discuss our direction, team race kits, and delegation of certain responsibilities. I've also started a team blog which is set to launch within the next couple of weeks. That could be a really fun thing and a great way to disseminate information! I'd really like to get a few more solid members to round it out to 10.... you'd think that'd be an easy thing. The quandry I'm in is setting selection criteria that is not terribly elitist. There's also been some talk in having both a team and a club... the team being a bit more "hardcore" while the club being a bit more laid-back. I think its a great concept... just need to iron out the details.

Let's seeeee... OH! Coach Matt Lieto sent me a list of questions that will help him plot out my training for the coming year. Apparently I'm going to be put, "on the program". Let it be noted: Matt... I'm not scared of you and all your professional triathlete training mumbo jumbo. (I may change my mind on that ).

Aggie Update: I hate her today. I'm taking her down to Ashland on a business trip and she better behave or else. BOY! And I thought being a parent could make you feel like a failure on a daily basis... add a puppy to that and you might as well buy a timeshare at the "I'm Inadequate" resort and spa!


Sunday, November 25, 2007

Check Out the New Title Banner!

What do you guys think? I love that picture b/c it shows my goofy yet ninja-ish side! KT from PT_Triathlete put it together for me b/c I'm computer-ly challenged... uhhhh... computer-ish challenged? Or maybe just plain challenged! Whatever... you know what I mean. THANK YOU KT! You ROCK dude! If you guys hate it lemme know... I'm sure that KT would be more than willing to spend another couple of hours making something that everyone likes! Bah ha ha... kidding. But seriously... whatdoyathink?

Heading out with my buddy Scott for a couple hour ride this afternoon. I'm hoping that it heats up to above 40 degrees by that time. Either way... its not raining so we are absolutely going to bike today!
Aggie update: She's growing! A LOT! She also thinks she's a lapdog. In the above picture she crawled on top of me and promptly fell asleep... its hilarious! She's growing so much so fast that I think she needs the rest. Who woulda thunk that you could learn a lesson about triathlon recovery from a St. Bernard puppy... rest to grow and get stronger...


Friday, November 23, 2007


I'm hoping that after yesterday's gluttony I'll float a little better in the pool!
You wouldn't believe how GORGEOUS it is here in Eugene! For some reason its not raining but perfectly clear and sunny here... although COLD! The whole crew (including Aggie) is heading out for a hike on Mt. Pisqua this morning. After that I plan on getting a workout in. Probably a run considering its been over two weeks since I've done that... time flies I guess. In the interest of not injuring myself I'll probably keep it slow and short... the perfect holiday run.

Hope everyone's Thanksgiving was spectacular!


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Swim Baby... SWIIIIIIIIIM!!!

Ok... so I mentioned that I did a test set in the pool about a week ago. I also mentioned that I wouldn't post the results b/c I was embarrassed. Then I thought, "Hey dipshit! The point of this blog isn't to make you look good! The point of this blog is to share your unique experiences while training for endurance sports... good AND bad!" SO... whether you want them or not... here are the results (feel free to ridicule, berate, and taunt):
  • Test Set: 15 X 100 yds @ 2:00 holding 1:25 (in other words, swim the interval. If you finish in 1:30 you get 30 seconds to rest before you head out on your next one... make sense?)
  • Here's what I did: 1:24, 1:20, 1:24, 1:27, 1:26, 1:25, 1:27, 1:29, 1:33, 1:33, legs seized, 1:29, 1:29, 1:30, 1:29
Relatively speaking I'm really pleased. I'm pleased not b/c the times completely rock but b/c Coach Gina was able to see when and where I started to fall apart in terms of form and what we could do to correct that. Her comment to me was that my dragging times had more to do with swim fitness than with technique! YIPPEE! Right? I mean... fitness is easy to fix! There's a bright side to everything. As a result she is having me do less drills in the water and focusing on building that swim fitness that I'm lacking.

Here's the swim I did today:
  • WU: 200 swim, 100 kick, 100 pull
  • Drill:
    • 4X50 skull/swim @ 1:10
    • 4X50 DPS @1:00
    • 4X50 FTD/swim @ 1:00
  • Main Set:
    • 4 X 200 free spin @ 3:15
    • 8 X 100 free regular @ 1:45
  • CD: Kick/Pull: 2X through whole set
    • 200 kick
    • 300 pull
  • Total Distance: 3600 yds
I need to get in the pool 4 times a week for a while. It's about base right now right? We're supposed to pick a discipline and work on that right? So swimming is my thing for the next couple of months.


Monday, November 19, 2007

So Profoundly Sad...

Between the Ducks loosing on Thursday, Dennis Dixon being out of the running for the Heisman Trophy, the sleep deprivation from "Mommy", i.e. Tri-Rob, having to get up with Aggie, and my brother leaving this morning... I'm a freakin wreck. OH! It also might have something to do with the fact that the closest I've come to a workout over the last week was jumping into Lake Waldo buck nekkid in 38 degree weather! As I said before... I'll do close to anything if you dare me, just on principle... and it gets even WORSE if my twin brother is around. (Yes... it was his idea and yes... he jumped too).

My last "workout" was a test set in the pool with coach Gina. The test set was 15 X 100 yds on the 02:00 holding 01:25. If you do the math... that works out to be the pace I'd like to swim in a full iron event... completing the 2.4 mile swim in 1 hr. The test set was on Sunday evening and all day Saturday and all day Sunday before the test set I did a really really good job of eating a ton of crap and not drinking hardly any fluids. PLUS... I was feeling a bit of a cold coming on. I'm too embarrassed to post the results. The really terrible thing about it is that I started severely cramping after the 8th set. I basically pulled the last 7. I cramped so hard that I actually pulled muscles in both my calves! Isn't that insane? I gimped around for an entire week b/c of cramps in the pool! Not very happy with myself... yet another "learning" experience that could have been avoided all together.

So my brother has left. It's always tough b/c we don't get to see each other very often... he lives clear over in Japan. Its indescribable how close we are. Its really odd to see the things in someone else that you hate in yourself and also validate the things that you think are good in you... all wrapped in a package that looks extremely similar to you. I just re-read that sentence and it makes no sense. It makes sense in my head though... so I'll leave it there. I just love and miss him... uhhhh... in like a brotherly twin sorta way.

So now its back to the grind. Back to the normal daily routine of work and family and puppy. I promise to put more triathlon stuff in... of course... I'm not sure if everyone likes to read about distances and times or all the other minutia that filters in around that stuff.... what do you think?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

We Have a NEW BABY!!!!!

Her name is Agatha and she's perfect!


Friday, November 9, 2007


Seriously, I don't know what you people without twin brothers do. I mean, who do you share all the crazy shit that goes on in your head with? Who do you share your darkest freaky deaky secrets with? Who do you pin down and fart on their head just b/c the urge strikes you? I dunno man... you guys are really missin out if you don't have a twin. There's NOTHING like an exact duplicate of your Dioxy Ribonucleic Acid to bring a couple of people super close together... whether you like it or not. It's also pretty fun to have people gawk at you when you're walking down the street too. As you can imagine we take full advantage of the humor in that. We're having a freakin BALL! The kids adore him and he's doing really really well! Healthy, happy, centered... it's a good thing. You can expect more pictures of our adventures over the next week or so.

Training has come to somewhat of a screeching halt... too busy being an immature 12 year old boy with my brother... much to the chagrin of my adoring and beautiful wife. (For some reason we get on her nerves occasionally). I did swim 3,200 yds yesterday and I spent an hour on the trainer today... being teased unmercifully by my brother. We're hoping to get in a good trail run tomorrow.

The LifeCycle Triathlon team is slowly but surely coming together. I assembled and "interviewed" 7 quality triathletes from the local area as a "pilot" to see how things will come together as well as establish a direction for where we want to go in the future. Gilad and Jeff at the shop have been extremely supportive and helpful and have a great vision for what the team could be! Things are moving slowly as I'm finding out that coordinating meetings and group rides/runs/swims can often be complicated by every one's "real" lives. No worries though... things will happen the way that they're supposed to regardless of how much I fret about them.

Big weekend ahead. I don't know what we're doing exactly but I'm pretty sure it's going to involve a hike with the kids, maybe some bowling , and a visit to Unka Bob's gellato shop!


Monday, November 5, 2007

The Most To Gain...

Pictured at left is, "The Beast". In it's day it was the mack-daddy of bikes... now however... it's cool b/c its "retro" and... heavy. It's so old school that the bottle cage bolts are actually integrated into the frame. Freakin SWEET! It's a loner from a friend. He said that I can use it indefinitely which is really cool b/c I can just use it instead of spending a grand or so on a new road bike to train on in the rainy shitty winter here in Eugene! Good stuff...

Anyway, if chose a discipline where I could improve the most and make up the most time in a race... it would have to be the bike! How do you improve on the bike? You get in the saddle for extended periods of time. You can also go ride with guys that are much stronger cyclists and try to keep up. I went on my first official "group" ride yesterday. I use the term "group" loosely b/c there were only 4 guys including myself. I guess that still a group... just a small one. Anyway, I headed out with Scott, (tri-bud), Ken (hubby of Coach Gina), and Erich (young buck and future world champion). All these guys can kick my arse on the bike... which is kinda the point for me. I don't want to go out and be stronger than everyone... I want to be the guy that's working himself until he pukes to keep up. We didn't go out and hammer... but we did climb 3 significantly long and steep hills... which is where everyone seems to pull away. So this morning I sit here with fatigued legs but also with the knowledge that I made some good bike fitness gains. Good times good times.

Total Time: 02:34:55
Total Distance: 42.25 miles
Avg HR: 151

In other news... did you guys know that I have an identical twin? Well I do! And guess what? He's comin for a visit today! YES! You can imagine the claziness that will ensue and I'll do my best to keep you up to date as things develop. He also completely stresses me out! I'll not go into detail but... yeah... it's not always happy happy joy joy if you know what I mean.

Breathe... breathe very very deeply... and while you're at it... breathe a little extra for me.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

I Forgot...

... just how cool it is to step out my door on an early fall morning and see the frost on the rooftops as the sun starts to peak out over the fir trees in my neighborhood. That's what greeted me after I suited up for my run this morning. It was one of those mornings where the silence is almost deafening. Where the only thing on your mind is the run ahead of you. There is no job, no mortgage, no yard work, no familial responsibilities. It's just you, your running shoes, the trail, the cold, and the silence. If you read this blog... you've all experienced this to one extent or another... and for me... it keeps me sane.
Good run this a.m.:
  • Distance: 5 miles
  • Total Time: 32:26
  • Pace: 06:29/mile
  • Avg HR: 162 (upper end of zone 2)
Felt good. Wore some new cold weather gear. Some Craft stuff as well as some new 2XU compression tights! LOVE the tights! I will say however that guys with legs that look like mine should generally stay away from wearing such tights in public. Not a good look... but I was warm and am now a true believer in the whole "compression advantage" thing.

As for the rest of the past week I did about 9,100 yds in the pool and spent 3 hours total on the trainer. Off season is going well.

My DUCKS take on the Arizona State Sundevils today in Autzen Stadium! My wife and I wll be there to cheer them on!


Wednesday, October 31, 2007


I am the masked triathlete! Let not the childish smile lure you in... I will consume your soul and condemn it to eternal hell fire. No really... I will. I'm serious. Don't make me come over there.

Breathe... and eat candy.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Ducks, Alcatraz, and Deep Thoughts...

Saturday was the Duck USC game! TOTAL blast AND we beat USC like a redheaded stepchild! YES! Apparently we Duck fans set some sort of noise record... actually made my head hurt!

GUESS WHAT??? I got a slot to race Alcatraz in June of '08!!!! Don't ask me how but its true. I placed third in a qualifying event... which means I missed a slot by one place! What probably happened is that the guy that got 1st or 2nd probably couldn't go so the slot rolled down! I don't really care how I got it... I'm just pumped that I did! This is a race that anyone that does triathlon REALLY wants to do! I can't believe that I'm actually getting to race it in my 2nd full year in the sport! Freakin COOL! I spoke with Coach Matt about it and he gave me his blessing so its ON! He might actually come down and race it with me too! (Well... not "with" me... mostly in front of me but you know what I mean) In addition two of my great college buddies, Jim and Gary, got slots as well... which means a great time will be had by all! WOOT WOOOOOOOOT!
Had another swim session with Coach Gina and my buddy Scott yesterday. Apparently Gina has seen some improvement since our last session a month ago! I'm really excited about that. You know how it is... we are our own worst critics right? So I kinda thought my swim was suckin! Apparently not! YAY! I thought this picture was pretty cool b/c of the "DEEP" etched in the tile. Just check out the pose Scott is in... there's no depth there whatsoever! The workouts with Gina are worth every penny and I'm particularly interested in getting stronger in the water with the prospect of the swim in San Francisco Bay! YES!


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Dark and Brooding...

Not really. I just wanted to mix it up a bit. Keep ya on your toes. Oh yeah... and I'm bored. What do ya think of the new color scheme? I like the black. It's totally bad ASS!

"Training" is going fine. Lot's of time on the trainer this week. Again, I'm focusing on keeping a high cadence and maintaining my HR at the upper end of zone 2. The idea being that I'll continue to increase the resistance on my trainer, maintain my cadence, and keep my HR low while increasing base strength. I think that's what I'm supposed to do. Big time focus on muscle strength and core work.... and of course putting in my time in the pool! I have another session with Coach Gina this coming Sunday which will be great!

In other news: There's something in the works! It starts with a "T" and ends in an "M" and it's it'll be sponsored by a local bike shop. More to follow as things solidify!


p.s. Tell me what you think about the colors!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Donuts... Is There Nothing They Can't Do?

I've been feeding my sweet-tooth like you wouldn't BELIEVE lately! It might have something to do with the weather change... or it could just be that I LOVE sugar! LOTS of sugar. I like sugar like my Father-in-law likes salt! That dude puts extra salt in his canned soup! Crazy huh?

Had a good weekend and managed to get a little bit of training in. Like I said, K had previous commitments so it was all Dad all the time Saturday and Sunday! Saturday was spent hangin out and watching the rain come down in sheets!

After K got home I hopped on the trainer in the tri-cave and threw down some easy mileage! Spent an hour and a half focusing on cadence and form. I kept my cadence up at 96 RPM and averaged a HR of 133 BPM. Pretty happy with that and it also gave me the chance to catch up on some podcasts.

Sunday the weather did a complete 180! It was beautiful out! Perfect day for a long ride or run... which didn't happen for me! When the sun comes out in Oregon... it doesn't matter what's going on... you just get out in it! The kids and I had a ball running around the yard playing tag, climbing the "jungle tree" and diggin holes in the dirt.

After that I gave my buddy Scott a call, shoved a raised glazed down my gullet, (literally), and went for a run with him. He has a great 4 mile out and back route right by his house. The first 2 miles are a gradual downhill... then of course you turn around and come right back up. Scott and I clocked the first mile at 6:39 and the second a couple of seconds faster. At the turn-around I told myself that I wasn't dropping pace... so I didn't. Scott fell back and I kept on. (I should mention that he did an 18 mile ride right before the run... yeah... he's a stud). I missed the split on the 3rd mile and ended the run with a total time of 26:04 which averages out to 6:30/mile. Let me just say that this was NOT the plan when we started out and that the last mile freakin SUCKED. Ya know, sometimes you just wanna go fast and HR zones be damned! Bad Rob! BAD! How DARE I not follow the training plan to a "T"! I gave myself a spanking and went home.

Today I headed to the gym and attempted to lift some weights and do some core. You know what's really fun to do if you're a skinny endurance type guy? Walk up to those really buff meat-head types and ask them how much they bench. Oh... and make sure that you puff out your chest when you do it. They think it's really cool and will embrace you as their own. Do you think they liked my mini-skirt?


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Ideal Conditions... for a DUCK!

I am a graduate of the University of Oregon... which makes me a Duck... but come ON! It has been raining like CLAZY! Alright, alright... I know I live in the Pacific Northwest but this rain is putting a serious damper (pun intended) on any riding I may want to do... at least outdoor riding... so it's the trainer for me! YAY! JOY! RAPTURE! I'm in the process of building the mac daddy "tri-cave". You know the one, plasma screen, DVD, PS3, kegerator, urinal. Actually its a corner in the garage where I squeeze my bike amongst all the crap I neglected to clean up during the '07 tri-season b/c I was too busy with training and racing.

I'm on total daddy duty this weekend. K has some previously scheduled commitments that last all day BOTH today and tomorrow. Of course I've known this for months... and neglected to assemble the Baby-sitter Army to watch the tres ninos in order to get some training in. Eh... all that means is that I have to do it early in the am or later in the pm... but did I get up this morning? Nooooooo... so tonight it is!

So here's a quandry. I need a road bike. Right now all I've got is my TREK tri-bike and I need something that I can take out on group rides as well as in the sloggy muck of the Eugene winters. Try convincing your spouse that you need ANOTHER bike... it's complicated. I may end up using a friends roadbike. Ebay? Craig's List? I need advice here. I simply don't want to drop a ton of coin on a bike right now.

Could I whine any more? Probably.


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Last Sunday was one of those fall days in Eugene that helps you see the potential in light. WHOA! Read that last sentence again! What the HELL man!? It's DEFINITELY the off-season. What I MEANT to say, (in a deep macho voice), is: I went on a run with my buddy Scott... and it was bitchin... ummm... and we checked out some chicks... and uhhhh... scratched ourselves. Bah ha ha! (But it was really purty)

No seriously, Scott and I went on a roughly 5 mile run at about a 7 min/mi pace. That was probably one of the last sunny fall days we'll see here in Eugene. Generally, once the rain starts... it doesn't stop until late spring... seriously.

Like today for instance. It rained like it was going out of style! Of course... it didn't START raining until I was 15 minutes into my run! PERFECT! The drops were the size of DOTS (you know... the candy). THEN it started to hail a little. Then it occurred to me that most of the population of Eugene is inside and MISSING all this! Seriously... most of you that read this blog have experienced being out there somewhere... riding, running, suffering to some degree. You've experienced being frozen, heat exhausted, blistered, strained, cramped, sweaty, dirty, hungry, tired... and HAPPY! I just love being out there. Being fast or slow doesn't matter at that point.... it just matters that you're out there and ALIVE! (Oh no... here I go again). It was fun.

Oh... I also swam 2 miles this morning. The drills that Coach Gina has me doing are beginning to feel more natural. I feel like I'm not fighting the water as much and I also feel more at home. Pretty cool.

You know what's NOT a really good recovery food? Snowballs. You know... the cream-filled chocolate cakes covered in marshmellow and faux coconut? Well guess WHAT? They have a Halloween version! YEAH! They're called "Glowballs"! You know WHY? B/c they're BRIGHT freakin ORANGE! Yeah... orange. So after my run I stopped at the DairyMart and bought a pack... and I freakin LOVED them! But I wouldn't recommend them for recovery.


Sunday, October 14, 2007

Kona Inspiration....

Most, if not all of you that read this blog, know what happened yesterday. It was a day that most triathletes wait for... and some dream about throughout the year... the Ironman World Championships in Kona, HI! I'm not much of a sports fanatic. Football? Eh. Baseball. Eh. Basketball. Boooooring. However, when it comes to triathlon... I'm obsessive! Thanks to live audio and video feeds we're all able to tap into and watch as this amazing event unfolds. SO... at 7 am I was logged into the computer. By 7:10 am I had signed up to have text message updates sent to my cell phone throughout the day telling me a particular athlete's progress. I had a soccer game to coach in the morning and then, being season ticket holders, K and I were committed to watching the Oregon Ducks beat the crap out of the WA state Cougars (Duck football is the one exception to following sports outside of the endurance world).

Like I said, I had text messages updating me. I also had Gilad at Life Cycle giving me updates! That was really cool! THANKS Gilad! The BEST updates came from my coach Matt Lieto! Matt had been in HI for the past couple of weeks training with his brother Chris Lieto and helping get ready for the stellar performance he yesterday! He was right there where the action was and was nice enough to give me updates as things happened.

Chris placed 9th in HI last year and he was out to tear it up this year. He came out of the water in the 8th position with a 51:37 split. Pretty freakin fast if you ask me... especially to us normal human types. After that, he took command of the bike in short order and held the lead throughout the entire course! He finished the bike in 4:28:17! Which is a 25 mph average. What was really impressive was how he executed his bike pacing. If you look at his splits there was a definite method to the madness... haul ass and establish a lead... chill out a bit in the middle... then pick it up in the end. In the last segment of the bike he was averaging 26.13 mph. That's a negative split! VERY cool! I was completely freakin out as he came into T2 with a roughly 3 min lead on the likes of Chris McCormack. By the time they were about 18 miles into the run I had gotten back from the game and was able to get online. Almost the exact moment that I clicked on the live video feed was when Macca caught Chris. I watched as Chris held onto Macca for roughly a mile. They looked AMAZING! I couldn't believe how hard Lieto was fighting to hold the lead that he had earned through out the day. In the end Macca's surge was just too much... Chris had pushed himself so hard throughout the day... that he had to let Macca go. He ended up finishing 6th over all with a final time of 8:25 and change! What an AMAZING performance! I really hope that Mr. Lieto is as pleased with himself as his fans and family are!

I'll be carrying the image of Lieto matching Macca stride for stride for quite a while. That was truly inspiring! The take home message for me? Limits are relative. Most people don't know what their's are. Chris pushed his yesterday. He probably learned something about himself that he didn't know before that run. He probably gained some insights into himself that he didn't have before the race. Wouldn't it be a tragedy if we all didn't try to push ourselves in that way... if we didn't create the opportunity to learn who we are when we're rubbed down to a nub? I think so.

I'm off for a run with my buddy Scott D. on a beautiful fall day in the Pacific Northwest! Life is MORE than good....


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Swim Drills and Cow Tag!

While K and I were on our romantic coastal weekend get-away... we went to an awesome beach that's on the way to a tiny little town called Petrolia. Basically the place is lost in time... one of those places that you can go and feel completely disconnected from the rest of the world. Anyway, K and I are hangin on this beach and behind us are these huge rolling hills... with cows grazing all over them. The incline up those hills from the beach was at LEAST 12% in some places. Out of the blue... K goes, "I DARE you to run up and tag one of those cows!" OK... if you ever wanna see me make an ass of myself... just dare me to do something! 99.762% of the time I'll do it just on principle! So I took off up the hill... which just about killed me it was so steep! By the time that I had gotten within 25 yds of the cows they were lookin at me like, "What the HELL is THAT guy doin?! I'm outa here! Come on guys!" And they were gone. Pretty anti-climactic but it was really fun trying to get to em... and I can rest easy that K has yet again failed to name a dare that I have not accepted!

In other news. I've been swimming a LOT! Ok... well maybe not a LOT... but a fair amount. At least 3 to 4 times a week I'm in the pool and working on the stuff that Coach Gina gave me to do. I'll post the workout in case you wanna give it a try! Here it is:
  • WU: 300 swim, 100 kick, 100 pull
  • Drill Set:
    • 4X50 wrist drag/ free by 24 @ 10 sec rest
    • 4X50 8 count/free @ 10 sec rest
    • 4X50 catchup @ 10 sec rest
  • Main Set:
    • 4X400 free on 1 min rest
      • #1 focus on a wide entry
      • #2 focus on a wide pull
      • #3 focus on a neutral hand position on entry
      • #4 focus on powering rotation from hips
  • Kick:
    • 10X50 odd flutter, even choice @ 10 sec rest
  • CD:
    • 1X300 pull breathe every 3rd stroke
  • Total Yards: 3,500
I feel like the drills are finally starting to pay off. At first they felt incredibly awkward and I thought that I'd NEVER get it right. But now... when I swim in the main set... I'm starting to feel things flow... feel the water move around me more smoothly... feel the rhythm that we've all heard about. It's nice...

Did weights and core work this am... then went on a 30 min aerobic run... the off-season is niiiiiiiiiiice....


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Back to Reality...

Geesh... it's been a while... sorry 'bout that!

My wife and I got the chance to take off for a 4 day weekend with each other! For those of you that have a spouse... and have kiddos... you know how rare that is. We took off last Thursday for the N. CA coast. I had seen my physical therapist for my back last Wednesday so the trip was perfect for recovery. Basically after my sessions I'm not "allowed" to do anything for two days anyway. Time to relax! The pic is the view from my Mother and Father-in-law's house in Trinidad. They let us use it for the long weekend and as you can tell... its GORGEOUS! K and I did a lot of talking, reading, sleeping, eating, saw three movies and did those things that couples do... sans kids! It was really bizarre for the first day or so. Both of us had to adjust to the quiet and the sitting still. We adjusted fine and it was REALLY nice to get reaquainted with my wife.

I dunno man... life is just freakin BUSY! Ya know what I mean? Often, by the time we get done working, parenting (homework, practice, playing, talking), maintaining the house, laundry, etc., etc., etc., we're just exhausted! THEN you have to scrub your schedules and make sure that everything is going to flow nicely for the next day. When exactly are you supposed to bond as husband and wife??? Add training for all this triathlon business and you REALLY limit your time together! Not to preach or anything... but for those of you that are married... go out on dates! Get a sitter and GO! Just do it... it pays dividends in the end!


p.s. Don't worry... I haven't forgotten that this is a TRIATHLON blog!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007


I've been doing more than my fair share of travelling over the last week or so. Combine that with some extra time in the pool doing drills and some more time on the trainer and you've got a LOT of alone time. The end result of all this alone time is that I've gotten to sit still and be in my own head for extended periods of time. My head is one of those places that you might like to go for a weekend. Except that after the weekend is over... you'd be conflicted. "Was this a total waste of time?" Or you might feel a bit dirty, "Did he really just think that?" Or perhaps a bit confused, "What does he MEAN when he says that all humans are idiots?" Then again you might have a really outstanding time and say, "Man! I can't WAIT to go back!". What I'm trying to say here is that its a mixed bag. If I'm completely honest with myself... inside my head is a WIERD freakin place and I like it just fine.

Ummmmm... yeah... that's all I got.


Sunday, September 30, 2007

drill, Drill, DRILL!

Soccer season is in full swing here in Eugene! I get to coach my daughter's 2nd grade team and have coached the same group of girls since kindergarten! Look at that INTENSE face! YEAH! You know 2nd grade soccer is EXTREMELY intense and serious... yeah... like... if they don't win... I usually beat them individually with a stick. Bah ha ha! It's been really fun to watch these girls come along and develop their skill and also watch them start to truly understand the game. They kicked some serious butt yesterday so there were no beatings necessary! Good times... good times.

As for me, I got back from Seattle late evening on Friday and got to hang with the family. I have a real love/hate relationship with business trips. REALLY nice to get a break from the daily routine of my husband/daddy duties... but after about a day I really start to miss them. Homecomings are always fun!

After coaching the game yesterday I was finally able to get over to the pool and try out some of the drills that Coach Gina had prescribed for me! I won't bore you with the details but I essentially did a total of 3,500 yds over half of which were technique drills. Ya know what? I had no idea there was so much to think about when you swim! Other than things like, "Gee, I wonder what's for dinner?" Or "Golly, I sure do like steamed spinach." Like Coach Gina said, I tried to concentrate on one thing at a time. It's kind of like meditation... you focus for a little while and then your mind wanders... and then you bring it back into focus. The funny thing for me was that while I was concentrating one specific thing... the rest of my form would go to hell. LOL... eh... oh well... I'll get it. I have a lot of questions for Gina when we meet later this month.

It's pouring rain here today... so I think I'll hop on the trainer for a while!


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Swim Coaching and a Full Moon

Got my fanny out of the rack this morning at 3:45 AM!!!! Yeah... you read that right... 3:45 am... that's 15 minutes before 4 am for those of you that have problems with telling time. Why? Well... sometimes I get these ideas in my head that make a lot of sense at the time... then I RUN with it! Basically if the decisions been made it'll take an act of God to stear me away from it. This week I have a meeting in Seattle from Wed thru Friday... there won't be a lot of opportunity for me to get out on a bike. So I got up, went out and opened the garage door, and hoped on the trainer. I had Jetpack in my ears and listened to Drew's account of IM Canada as I did an hour and a half on the trainer while looking out at the full moon. Pretty cool actually... and I'm not a big fan of the trainer. Got off the bike, showered, and made it to the airport just in time to catch my flight. I'm now in Seattle... and as you can tell... I'm completely focused on the information being presented... (as I write my blog entry!) Geesh...
The REALLY cool thing that I wanted to tell you is that I finally got around to scheduling a master's swim lesson. One of my Eugene tri-friends, Scott, called up Gina Dohm and scheduled a private session last Sunday. Just a note on Gina; if you're in Eugene, and you want to get faster, more efficient, more comfortable, or just figure out exactly what you could improve.. Gina is your woman! She's been coaching for 11 years and has a background in Psychology with an emphasis in sports motivation. She's currently the Head Coach for Emerald Aquatics (Master's and Youth), and is the Head Coach for the Willamette High School Swim Team in addition to offerring private lessons/consults! All that AND she's a really freakin COOL chick! You can check out her website HERE!
She worked with me for about an hour and gave me a bunch of drills to help me refine my swim. One of my long-term goals is to complete a full-iron distance swim in 1 hour or under. Currently my 100m pace is about 7 seconds off that. The good news is that Gina thinks that I haven't done too much irreparable damage by teaching myself! She gave me a bunch of quality drills to do as well as a workout outline to play around with until I see her next... in about a month. Luckily she wrote a very detailed summary of our session and the drills to work on and sent it to me via email! I'm REALLY looking forward to improving my swim during the off season and reaping the benefits in the '08 season!
OK! Off to listen to more GREAT information! ("Wah wah WAH wah wah wah wahhhhh)

Monday, September 24, 2007

Narcissism DEFINED!

Yeah... here's ME! Just some pics from my last race! Can you just hear the song, "You're So Vain" playing in the background?
Here's the boat we jumped off... check out the whitecaps! NOT pretty!
Exiting T1! No one ever told me that I look so "special" in that helmet!
The kick! I was thinking about Brett during this and his crazy Hornet Juice induced crack high at the end of one of his races!
Here's the crew! I'm REALLY lucky to have the group of friends that I do! These guys are stellar and I look forward to doing this race in particular with each other until we're old and gray!
Congrats all around! What a great day!