Sunday, August 26, 2007

I Got Lost...

In more than one way. Yeah... um... my advice? ALWAYS have a freaking PLAN! This could have been a lot worse... but it turned out o.k.

Saturday, I woke up with a bad attitude and a HUGE chip on my shoulder. Believe me... when I'm like this... everyone LOVES being around me! Really... its true... they do. SO... my wonderful, adoring wife said something along the lines of: "Shouldn't you be out training or something? You're a complete psycho! Get outtaoutSTANDING string of expletives (you shoulda heard it... I was in top form)... and took off. Total ride time was supposed to be an hour and a half... easy. I didn't really have a plan but thought that I'd head out and pick my turns as I came to them. I ended up making some turn somewhere that completely screwed me up directionally. I have no idea what happened but I truly didn't know where I was! I mean... I knew GENERALLY... but not exactly. I figured I'd end up in some podunk town and then I'd figure it out. So given my state of mind b4 I headed out on the bike... here was my general reaction, "Rob, you're such a freakin IDIOT! How do you get LOST? Completely WORTHLESS! Now you're out here with one water bottle and a 1/2 oz of gel and you have no idea when you're going to get home. Nicely done retard!" Yeah... isn't that nice. I am my own best supporter. Then something happened.

I looked up... and there was a herd of roughly 16 cows just looking at me... just staring the way that cows sometimes do. I looked at them. They looked at me. They weren't chewing or anything... they were just standing there... staring. So I rolled to a stop.... and I stared back. After a few minutes of this... I said "Hi cows." They blinked... bent their heads down and began to graze... as if I had never been there.Then they went back to grazing. I giggled to myself and started riding again. So in that moment I realized something; I was making myself miserable for no apparent reason! Do you ever do that? Ever wake up and just subconsciously decide that you want to be pissed off all day? Apparently I do. What a waste of energy. ANYWAY... having that realization turned things around for me... and about 2 minutes later I saw a sign... "Eugene 16 miles". Good times... good times. I love this sport!

Here's the stats for the ride:
Total time: 2:09:00
Total Dist: 37.9 mils
Avg Spd: 17 mph and change
Avg HR: 142 BPM

Today Jack came with me for a run on his bike. It's always nice to run with a mobile support crew. I get a kick out of listening to him hum or sing a random tune as we're truckin along.

Here's the stats for the run:
Total Time: 50 min
Total Dist: 6.4 miles
Pace: 7:48
Avg HR: 148

Slow run... but felt good. I realized the other day that with all the family fun and festivities I've trained a grand total of 10 days in the last month. Bah ha ha! Eh... it is what it is.

Drew is on the run portion of IM Canada as we speak! Just think... in a few hours he's going to be able to lay claim to the title: IRONMAN! How SWWWWWWWWEEET is THAT????


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Lunch with Drew and a CRASH!

Yeah... uhhhhh.... the day started off GREAT! I headed over to Bend to do some work and I got to hook-up with "In the Near Future Ironman Guy" Drew! I Took him out to lunch attempting to carb him up for the big event... but apparently he doesn't "BELIEVE" in carbo-loading! Yeah... whatever Drew! All that scientific proof and those double blind studies mean NOTHING! Bah. Anyway, we had a great lunch and I picked his brain about the upcoming race and how he plans to approach it. In true Drew form he says, "Awwww man... I dunno... I'm just gonna finish maaaaaan. Ya know? Like... I don't care if my transitions take me 10 minutes. Ya know?" What a load of DOODY! I predict that Drew will finish Ironman Canada in 12 hours or LESS! If he doesn't? I'll..... I'll... uhhhhh... ummmm... I dunno... but I'll do something CLAZY! We had some good laughs. I patted him on the back, wished him the best, and sent him on his way! Go get 'em DREW! Leave it on the course man!

Seriously folks... I'm totally pumped for him! AND... just a tad bit jealous! Drew is about to embark on a life-changing adventure! You just don't get many of those in a single life-time. SUPER cool stuff!

Then I crashed. Yes. Crashed. I hurted my Subaru BAAAAAAD! Basically its in a towing company's hold lot until the fleet folks figure out if they wanna fix it or total it. I'm fine. The other passengers were fine. I'm not going into huge detail... but let's just say.... I'm a total bone-head! Seriously... I've done enough mental flogging to last at least the next 3 months... so I'm going to leave it at that.

The training I was SUPPOSED to do over there fell through due to the hassles of insurance, towing, rental cars, etc. Yeah... what else is NEW! GEESH... I think I've trained a total of 2 days in the last 10! That SUCKS! BUT... it is what it is right? After all the car wreck drama... I met my future coach and friend for dinner, talked about next year, and shoved a ton of sushi down my gullet to drown my sorrows. I feel better now.

OKIE DOKIE! If you go HERE! You can track Drew at Ironman Canada on Sunday September 26th! Just look up bib number 601 and you can get his splits! I know I'll be watching!


Monday, August 20, 2007

The House is EMPTY! :(

Whelp... my sister and her crew: bro-in-law Scott, nephews Sam and Jake, and neices Sophie and Lilly all took an early flight out of Eugene this morning! The house seems a bit dead... pretty depressing actually. As always we had an AWESOME time together and are already making plans for our next visit. I sure do love those guys... and wish that we weren't so far away from each other. I will say that only getting to see all of them once or twice a year certainly makes me appreciate the time we DO have! What a great family! I can't believe how much the kiddos are growing and changing and maturing! SO fun to watch!

All training took a HUGE backseat to the visit. Sorry... that's just the way it is. I see them so rarely that the prospect of heading out on a 3 hour ride and missing out on the fun didn't appeal to me. We were pretty active the entire time so I don't think my body went into complete recovery mode... but I consumed enough greasey food to choke an elephant! Training picks up again tomorrow and I'm heading to Bend to wish Drew luck at IM Canada and meet with my future coach! Good times... good times...

So my last scheduled race of this season is on September 9th up in Hood River. Looking forward to it but it's more about going up and having fun with my friends rather than kicking my own A**. I just haven't been putting in the time and effort to be very competitive at this particular race.. so I'll just go out and have a good time. A couple of goals that I AM going to set are: swim the 1.5 mile downriver swim in under 30 min, complete the 18 mile nazi hill ride in 1 hr or less, and average 7:30 min miles over the course of the hilly 8 mile run! Lofty? I think not. All of that is totally within the realm of reality for me... even if I have been living on grease for the past 7 days! We'll just see what happens.

I can't believe it's already time to start thinking about next year's race schedule! The only thing I have tentatively planned for next year is Ironman 70.3 Lake Stephens... other than that I'm wide open! Also... I'm going up to volunteer an IM CDL... just to get the lay of the land and experience the whole ironman thing from the outside. Ought to be a good time.

That's it for now... oh WAIT! If you're reading this and you're in Eugene, put 9:00 am on Saturday September 8th on your calendar... there's something going on that you won't want to miss! Details to follow!


Thursday, August 16, 2007

The Crew Is HERE!

My sister and her family: husband Scott, Sam 13, Jake 11, Sophie 9, and Lilly 6 1/2 all arrived safe and sound on Tuesday and the fun hasn't stopped! There's nothing like having 4 adults and 7 children in one house at the same time... let me just say... I need to invest in some earplugs! Don't ask how many times we've run the dishes or how many gallons of milk we've gone through in two days... you just don't want to know! We're having an awesome time and I LOVE having them here!

The crew is from St. Louis, MO so yesterday we took them up Spencer Butte here in Eugene! It was really cool to see the looks on the kid's faces as we reached the top! Beautiful hike on a perfectly sunny day! Sometimes I forget that I live in such a gorJESUS place... and it takes someone visiting to remind me!

In addition to all the overwhelming fun... training continues. Although I'm in a bit of a mental/physical slump... I'm still getting out there and putting in the time and effort. I just don't know that I'm going to expect a TON of speed in this race up the in gorge. I'm simply not going to worry about it!

Yesterday's workout out? BRICK! Attacked some hills in the heat during the bike and the run... good stuff. My legs felt pretty sluggish after the hike up the Butte earlier that morning... but in the end it was a fairly decent workout... here's the stats:
  • Total Time Bike: 1 hour
  • Total Distance: 18.9 miles
  • Avg Speed: 18 and change
  • Avg HR: 146
Happy with the ride. I basically did a loop that included about 4 hill repeats. Legs felt heavy.
  • Total Time Run: 1/2 hour
  • Total Distance: 4.2
  • Avg HR: 162!!!!!
Holy CRAP that run wasn't remotely fun for me. Look at the HR... not good. But it was HOT and I was trying to keep my cadence and turn-over up. Not entirely sure what's up with my run... but oh WELL!

SO... more fun will ensue today and then tomorrow we all take off for Sun River! Whoop Whoop!


p.s. Drew tagged me with that silly question thing that you might have seen on other blogs... the jury is out as to whether I'll actually complete it!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Feel the.... BONK!

I had the privilege of experiencing my first ever "BONK" on Sunday! YES! Here's the story: Sunday, my family and I are scrambling to get ready for a visit for my sister, her husband, and her 4 kids. All day long it was rush rush rush clean clean clean... you know how it is. In the process of all the bustling... I completely forgot to eat... that's right... all day. OH... wait... I had a cup of coffee and a banana in the morning. That's the extent of my Sunday nutrition. So 6pm rolls around and I still haven't gotten my scheduled ride in. I throw on my cycling clothes, grab two 24 oz bottles of NUUN and a flask of Hammer Gel and take off. The scheduled ride was 2 hours staying in an aerobic zone. I headed out toward the flats around the airport and was slammed by a serious head-wind for the first hour! I was cranking just to maintain 16 mph... and I felt like the power output should have at least put me at around 22! I reached my turn-around and started to feel a little sluggish... took in a couple oz of gel and turned around. About an hour and 20 min into the ride my legs started to buuuuuuuurn and I was struggling to maintain a decent cadence. The good new was that the wind was now at my back and I was able to maintain about 25 mph. Its kind of hard to explain... but despite putting forth that speed.... I had ZERO energy! I felt like complete CRAP and knew I had quite a ways to go AND... the last mile of the ride up to my house is up hill at about a 9% grade. I finally made it to the bottom of the hill... and here's the pathetic part... I actually called my wife to come pick me up! But guess WHAT? The line was busy. At that point I had the following conversation with myself: "Are you going to die?" "Uhhhh... no.... but..." "Are you going to irreparably damage yourself by going up the hill?", "Uhhh... no... BUT...:", "Why are you being such a damn P***?", "I hate you...", "I hate you too... now get goin." Literally... that was the convo! So up I went! Made it home and looked in the mirror... I was completely ashen... walking death. Spent the next hour drinking and eating and telling my wife that she never cared about me and if she was a GOOD wife... she wouldn't have been on the phone! Bah ha ha! Kidding.

Actually... I'm glad I experienced that. Now I know that I never want to do it again.

Here's the stats for the ride:
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Total Distance: 39.1 mile
  • Avg MPH: 20 and change
  • Avg HR: 150 on the nose
Overall... I'm a happy boy!

OK... real quick... check out the swim I did today!
  • Warm-up: 500 yd warm-up
  • Main Set: 8 X 50 drill/choice on 10 sec rest; 4 X 500 tempo (pull 1st and third 500) @ 1 min. rest; 4 X 50 fast on 15 sec. rest
  • Cool-down: 200 yd
  • Total distance: 3,200 yds
Felt AWESOME during that swim. I'm not exactly sure WHY... but I did!

Anywho! I'm off to pick-up my sis and her family! We're gonna have a full week of fun and frolick her in the great Pacific Northwest!


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Coastal BLISS!

The family and I took a little vacation beginning last week! Of course... no internet access... thus... the long delay in any semblance of a post!

K's parents have a house in Trinidad California so we packed up the kids and headed over for the week! For those of you that have never been, the Northern California coast line is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful in the world! We did a LOT of hiking in the coastal Redwoods, wandering the beaches, and playing in the lagoon! I can't tell you how LUCKY we are to be able to hop in the car and go play in one of the most gorgeous places in the nation! Just before I headed out of town, I stopped into LifeCycle for a couple of missing parts. I was chatting with Jeff and I mentioned that I was heading down to Trinidad... turns out he was born and raised right up the road from where we were going and had done a ton of swimming, biking, and running growing up in that area! What a TINY world!

I have to admit that the training took a backseat over the last week... I've got my priorities and last weeks priority was PLAYING with the family! I did get in a couple of rides, two open-water swims in Big Lagoon, and a couple of runs... but nothing terribly intense... mostly I just hung with the parents-in-law, the wife, and my amazing trio of kids!

I'll leave it at that... see pics below! We had an amazing time... as we always do when we head down there. Training begins again today with a 2 hour ride and will continue on a normal schedule starting tomorrow.

Tuesday my sister, her husband, and her 4 kiddos will be coming out for a visit! It's been YEARS since the entire fam has made it out here so we are ALL extremely PUMPED to show them what Eugene and the rest of Oregon are all about!


Monday, August 6, 2007

"Slow, Slow, Catch the Monkey"

Sorry for being flakey! Somewhere over the last few days I got busy. I swear... last Thursday I blinked and all of a sudden... here I am on Monday! Craziness...

Saturday I hooked up with fellow Eugenian and triathlete Scott D for an early morning 2 hour ride. I couldn't believe how chilly it was! I realized on the way to meet him that this was the first ride of any significance that I'd done WITH anyone. I don't know if that's unusual or not. But I was thinking about it... and it occurred to me that I really really REALLY enjoy those long rides on my own. It's just a great time to sit quietly in your own head and listen. ANYWAY... Scott took me out Loraine Hwy and onto some roads, and some hills, that I'd never ridden b4. Here's the stats:
  • 2 hours
  • 32.6 miles
  • Avg Spd: 16.4
  • Avg HR: 137
Needless to say.... we didn't go out and hammer but there were some fairly significant hills thrown in there. We had a good time chattin it up about tri stuff. This is his first full season in the sport as well so we had a lot to talk about. I didn't realize that the guy was OLD! Bah ha ha... (joking Scott). Seriously though, he's 48... and the dude is FIT as all get-out! Anywho... great ride, great conversation! THANKS Scott!

That afternoon I headed over to Amazon for a swim... here's what THAT looked like:
  • Warm-up: 400m
  • Main set: 8 x 50m drills on 10 seconds rest/15 x 100m tempo on 15 seconds rest/600m pull
  • Cool-down 200m
Pretty cool swim workout eh? Felt spiffy... yet still no faster! I NEED to get my fanny into a masters swim group so someone can show me what I can be doing better!

Yesterday was a SLOW 1 hour run! I mean SLOW! Here's the thing... I really don't have an exact read on what my HR zones are.... I have a general idea... but I don't have it down to a science. I feel like my HR is a bit high... especially during a run. As a result, I'm ATTEMPTING to re-establish a larger aerobic base. Ideally I'd really like to haul A** and keep my HR down in the 140s.... but that takes time and patience... which I lack when it comes to working out. You HAVE TO GO SLOW NOW SO YOU CAN GO FAST LATER! So.... I ran a pretty hilly 60 minutes and covered just under 7 miles... it was KILLING me to keep in my aerobic zone... but I did it!

Whew... that about covers it! By the way... the title of this post? Yeah... what do YOU think it means? It's a quote from Scott D... I'd love to hear what you think it means!


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Triple "H" Nekkie Brick!

Is that a great title or WHAT? Bah ha ha! Anything with the word "Nekkie" in it totally ROCKS!

So let me explain... I went on a business trip down to Ashland where I hosted a dinner last night... after finishing up in Ashland this morning I started the 3 1/2 hour drive to Bend. Along the way I got to drive through some of the most beautiful country in Oregon AND pass right by Crater Lake. On the training schedule today was a brick session... what better place to do a brick than in the gorJESUS high desert of Central Oregon!?

So here's where the "H's" come in. The first "H" is HEAT! It was 95 degrees for pete's sake! Then I thought of Brett at Zen and the Art of Triathlon training for a full Ironman in the Texas heat and cursed myself for being a pansy! The second "H" stands for high elevation. Crater Lake and the surrounding area sits at a measly 7,100 feet above sea level! OUCH! I'll put it this way... I felt it. The last "H" stands for HILLS! Basically, I jumped on my bike at less than 5,500 feet of elevation... and climbed the remaining 1,600 feet! YEA! So basically I averaged a massive 9.8 mph heading up the climb... just grinding through the gears and suffering... and loving every minute of it! Let me just say that there were NO cars... the air was hot but had a significant clarity to it... and it was completely silent with the exception of the "whiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiir" of wheels on pavement! It occurred to me that this is one of the many many reasons that I LOVE this sport and I'm so sad for those that fail to seize the opportunity to step outside of themselves and push some of the limits that they've defined for themselves.

ANYWAY! HA! Sorry about that... got carried away with the musing.

So I got back to the car, threw the bike in, changed into my running shoes and took off on one of the many X-country skiing trails that you find throughout the area. It was just the breeze, the trees, and me running down the trail. I couldn't stop smiling! So what's a guy to do? That's RIGHT... I whiped my shorts off and finished the duration of my run..... buck a** nekkid! Bah ha ha! True story! No... I didn't take pictures! Don't ask... it was a moment... and I went with it!
Great workout... and my fanny didn't even get burned.
In other news I met with my future coach over a sushi dinner tonight. Big plans... big plans. I'm waiting to announce who it is... but if you're like me... you'll be WAY pumped. It's a FANTASTIC fit for both of us and I'm POSITIVE that he is more than capable of helping me along the path to accomplish my goals... whatever THAT means! he Ha HA!
p.s. By the way... I REALLY appreciate the comments on the last post! THANKS!