Back in the Pool

Due to some logistical difficulties, I couldn’t get a flight back to Denver until 2pm. That was a great reason to get in a pool workout with Nova. Ahelee called the long course set:
100m warm-up
6 x 100m (50 “drowning drill”, 50 fast)
1 x 300m (200 easy, 2 x 50 sprint non-free w/fins)
1 x 300m (150 easy, 3 x 50 sprint non-free w/fins)
1 x 300m (100 easy, 4 x 50 sprint non-free w/fins)
1 x 300m (50 easy 5 x 50 sprint non-free w/fins)
1 x 300m moderate
1 x 300m negative split with paddles
1 x 200m negative split with paddles
1 x 100m negative split with paddles
100m warm down
= 2,900 meters (~3,200 yards, 1.8 miles)

The workout felt great and my knees were feeling much better after practice. The only lingering effects from the Ironman is now some tightness/soreness in the back and arms from bike and some very minor knee, foot and ankle soreness. At the practice this morning, Phillip noted that he cut almost 50 minutes from his first California 70.3 to his 2nd. Wildflower is the beginning of May…

Ironman California Official Results

Well the official results are in…and I was pretty accurate.
I finished 976th of 1958 starters and 197th of 380 35-39 Males.

Total Time: 05:58:51
Swim: 30:04, 29th in age group, 199 overall, avg speed- 1:31/100m
T1: 4:54
Bike: 3:12:22, 236th in age group, 1121 overall, avg speed-17.5 mph
T2: 2:18
Run: 2:09:15, 237th in age group, 1203 overal, avg speed- 9:52/mile

Here are the official results:
http://www.ironman.com/assets/files/results/california70.3/2008.htm

My knees are already feeling better. I know I can complete a 70.3 now and figure I should have worried less about pacing and pushed myself harder. With some work on leg strength and technique, I know I can shave at least 20 minutes off the bike and the same on the run. I could shave 3 minutes off my swim time as well with a little more effort and better sighting. Some slightly faster transitions and I could gain another 2-3 minutes. All told- I’m could see a near 5 hour time on my next one…
…don’t tell Ellie.

Ironman California Weekend

After taking the week off to rest for the Ironman race, I did a pre-race workout on Friday. It consisted of the last 15 minutes of the Nova workout at Soka (about 700m) in my wetsuit. followed by a 10 mile bike and mile run.

On Friday evening we headed to Oceanside to pick up registration materials and do some carbo-loading at Macaroni Grill. I was a little nervous that my kness were a little painful from just walking around. It seems that my body hadn’t fully recovered from the half marathon a couple of weeks ago.

At 4am on Saturday, I woke and by 5:30 I was setup up my transition area at Oceanside Harbor. The Ford Ironman California 70.3 transition area was the biggest I’ve ever seen. I believe around 2,200 athletes competed. The pros went out at 6:40 and my wave started at 7:07.

The swim started sluggish, but I caught my rhythm after 800 yards or so. I passed the bulk of the previous 3 waves to finish in the top few of my wave. I made a good dash for the transition area, but got tangled in my tri-top, got my bike caught in the rack, and had a difficult time getting clicked in. I lost a couple of minutes of my lead, which was disappointing.

The actual peddling was fine for the first 15 miles. I avoided getting passed too often, but when we hit the killer hills of Camp Pendleton backcountry, I dispiritedly watched numerous people pass me. My 3 hour goal was missed by 20 plus minutes. My heart rate was fine, my legs just weren’t interested in going any faster.

On the run, I modified my gait and pace significantly in hopes of minimizing the punishment on my kness, but by mile 2, they were hurting. I looked pretty pathetic on my 9+ minute mile pace. I fought through some side stiches and the painful knees to finish the run in a little over 2 hours. I ignored the pain to sprint the last 200 yards.

Final Unofficial Time: 5 hours 57 minutes. I’ll be looking for the official results in the coming hours/days.


I want to give a special thanks to my wife, Ellie, for supporting my long practice sessions that often meant being gone for the better part of Saturdays, for coming to all my races, looking after 3 sometimes challenging kids for hours during the races, and letting me blow huge portions of the family recreation budget on bikes, helmets, memberships, wetsuits, shoes, bags, workout clothes…

Thanks! I love you honey!

Sharks: We are visiting their territory


The Catalina Channel is Great White Shark Range. Though attacks are rare, they do happen, including one recently in Huntington Beach. Dave was nice enough to omit that detail before our swim yesterday, but afterwards let me in on the secret of the 15 ft Great white attack a few days before. According to the pacific coast shark research committee, the season is off to a hopping start: http://www.sharkresearchcommittee.com/pacific_coast_shark_news.htm

I woke with sore shoulders and scabbed schaffing on my neck from yesterdays ocean swim in a tri-suit. Though a leaf from my aloe vera plant helped, I’ll have some more scar tissue.

This morning I swam in the pool at the Irvine Wollett Aquatic Center with Dave while Ahelee called the set. Did a nice set of:
5 x 100 on 1:35
4 x 200 on 3:00
3 x 300 with :30 rest
2 x 400 with :30 rest
1 x 500
350 warm down
=3,850 yards

I then did an easy ride with Shane in the afternoon from home to Cooks Corner, the biker bark at the mouth of Santiago Canyon and back. Now it is just take it easy this week before the Half Ironman next Saturday.

In the Pool and Ocean in Surf City

Back in California this morning and I got to do my first weekday swim with Novaquatics in weeks. Coach Ahelee gave the set at 5:45am:

300 warm up
300 moderate
300 kick
300 moderate-fast

Repeat 2x
8 x 25 on :35 seconds
8 x 25 stroke with gear on :35 seconds

Repeat 5x
200 with gear on 3:30, 2:00 pace
100 with gear on 2:00, 1:00 pace

200 warm down
=3,300 yards

After getting my bike fitted at Rock N Road Cyclery and having lunch with my wife, I drove to Huntington Beach to do an Ocean Swim with Shane Fishbein and Mike Galli.

We threw a couple of kayaks in the back of my truck and went the couple of blocks to the beach. We swam from Lifeguard Tower 11, around the gawking crowds on the pier, up the coast and back. In all we were in the mid-50s water swimming quick for over an hour. Either I’m off on Tower 11, or Google Maps is trying to tell me that our 2-3 miles was probably under 2. That is the fun of currents in the open ocean.

4,150 yards at 5,290 feet in 73 minutes

Finally back in the water this week. I woke with a scratchy throat, but I just drank a cup of Airborne and headed to the 6:00am Triathlon workout at Highlands Ranch. It consisted of:

100 warm-up
10 x 100 yds (4 on 1:30, 3 on 1:25, 2 on 1:20 and finished under 1:15)
100 back

Repeat 3 times:
200 kick on 4:00
12 x 25 on :30 (3 Fast, 1 Easy)

50 Easy

1000 yards (In pyramid)
-2 x 25 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 50 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 75 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 100 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 100 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 75 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 50 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)
-2 x 25 (1st fast, 2nd Easy)

100 Back

Repeat 3 times:
3 x 25 no-breathers with pull gear on :40
1 x 125 on 1:50

200 warmdown

=4,150 yards

Almost Sick

The last couple days I have had a scratchy throat and runny nose. I don’t want to get a full blown cold especially this close to the California Half-Ironman, so I’ve been trying to get some extra sleep and drinking Airborne. Unfortunately, I’ve noticed without the morning workouts, I’ve put on some pounds too and I’m sure loosing some fitness, so I had to do a little workout this evening.

I ran 1 mile to dinner and back and then did a spin bike with arm pulls for 35 minutes. It was an easy workout on less than ideal equipment, but I was glad to get almost an hour of cardio.

I’m excited to get back in the pool tomorrow morning before heading back to California where I’ll have an opportunity to do some brick workouts on Friday and Saturday.

Saturday Brick Workout

For those not in the Triathlon world, a brick workout is when you do 2 or more sport workouts in a day. Today I did a good brick workout.

It started at the Soka University Pool at 7:30 with Coach Mike Collins calling the sets. He was taking a short break from the clinic he is doing in Mission Viejo for those interested in going to the FINA World Masters Long Course Championship in Australia. He and the Mission Viejo Masters coach are coaching the national team.

Half of the Soka University Pool this morning. It overlooks the beautiful canyon Between Laguna Beach and Aliso.

Anyhow, here was the workout:
8 x 75 (IM order, middle 25 kick) on 1:15/1:20
16 x 100 (Alternative Free and stroke in IM order. Free on 1:30, Stroke 1:45)
4 x 100 pull on 1:15
400 pull on 5:30
8 x 50 pull on 1:00
400 pull on 5:30
16 x 25 pull on :30
400 pull on 5:30
200 warm down
=4,800 yards (~2.75 miles)

Next I met up with Dave Galli and Shane Fishbein at Corona Del Mar for an Ocean Swim. I decided to do it in my wet suit to get used to it before my next triathlon. While it made the water entry easier, I really would prefer to swim without it- it chaffed and was hot. I miss the numbing effect of cold water swimming. Dave set a fast pace that I just kept up with in my wetsuit. We swam just shy of 2 miles.

The Pacific was white capping with the strong winds, but CDM was protected by the Balboa jetty. You can just make out Catalina on the horizon.

Next the 3 of us jumped on our bikes with Dave’s friend, Brian, and headed up PCH to Huntington Beach and then took the Santa Ana River trail to Angel Stadium and back. The winds coming off the ocean made the trip to Anaheim easy, but coming back was tough. I’m still feeling bad about cutting Dave off and causing him to crash on the trip back. He was so cool about it. I am very fortunate to find him as a workout partner. Dave- sorry again. We did over 35 miles in under 2 hours. My legs were feeling a little spent during the last 1/2 mile though.

Turning around at Angel Stadium in Anaheim.

Last we threw on our running shoes and did a run. I did a short mile run to Pelican Point and back as I wanted to get back to my family who hadn’t seen me all week. Shane was going to run to Crystal Cove and back.

I’m feeling pretty good about the California 70.3. Just need to figure out my nutrition so that I don’t hit the wall at mile 35 on the bike on my long rides.

Back After a Day of Rest

I was struggling to remain awake at work on Tuesday so decided that a rest day was required. Slept in until 7:00 am on Wednesday.

This morning (Thursday) I was anxious to get back into the pool. The workout:
1 x 300 moderate pace on 4:30

3 x 100 descending on 1:30
6 x 50 drill on :50

1 x 200 breath every 3rd stroke down, 5th stroke back
2 x 100 EZ, Fast on 1:30
4 x 50 Kick Descending on the 50

Repeat 3 times:
4 x 100 alternating 1:20, 1:15
1 x 300 moderate pace on 4:30

100 Easy
4 x 50 kick descending on 1:00
200 warm-down
=4,100 yards

Walking Like a 70 year old

I have been walking like a 70 year old man for the past 2 days. The stiffness and soreness from the 1/2 marathon was pretty severe. Travel from Moab to Orange County on Sunday and from Orange County to Denver on Monday prevented me from doing much walking or stretching. It was nice to be back in the water Tuesday morning and be able to walk somewhat normally again.

The workout:
1500 warmup:
500 yards alternating free and back by 100
400 yards (alternating 50 back fly kick, 50 free)
300 yards (3 x 100 IMs)
200 yards (alternating 25 Fast, 25 EZ)
100 yard of drill

1500 main set (30 x 50 yards):
5 x (5 x 50 Fast, 1 x 50 Easy on 1:00)

Pull Set with first length a single breath per length:
2 X (25, 50, 75, 100, 75, 50, 25 yards)

200 Warm Down

Total Yards= 3,800

Legs were feeling much better after work and so I spent 30-40 minutes spinning (exercise bike) in the hotel. I’m little worried about the bike portion of my upcoming 1/2 ironman.