Monday, August 25, 2014

CHICAGO TRIATHLON

Friday - Aug. 22nd
HOWDY!!!

Ok, so I raced a couple weeks back at a beautiful place in NC. The tri is called Lake logan and some great athletes showed up. I finished 5th there but it was in prep for my 2 big races of the year. One being Now! Yep, thats right- its Friday the 22nd, and I will be blogging randomly throughout the next days prepping for the 6am start on Sunday.

Chicago Triathlon - International Distance - 6am - Sunday 7,000 athletes!!! 

6.13pm - My Dad came along the trip with me and I am so happy he did. It's our first time flying together in an airplane. We woke up at 4am for our 6am departure. All was good to arrive in Chicago until we ran out of fuel and landed in St. Louis. Since we were arriving early anyway, we were in no rush and really enjoyed the time together. Plus I got this sweet pic :)
 We then arrived and took the Blue line into town. That was awesome. A 45min ride through Chicago. Very cool. We then arrived out the Host Hotel (Hilton) which is extremely nice! Thank you Filters Fast for your ongoing support to help me reach my long term goal.
Finally, we ate Breakfast at 12.30pm. Yep, breakfast. :)
View from Hotel
After that, I had a great swim while my dad went for a 4mile walk. I then went to the pre race meeting, picked up my packet and had a coffee (Im drinking that coffee now :).
Next up, pop and I are going to go to a sports bar and enjoy. 
Race day is coming and boy oh boy do I want to race against the Elites!!! So excited. 
Over and Out!

10.11pm - Well, that was an experience (as everything is with my Dad) but we just walked over 4miles just to eat. We went to eat at a local place called Billy Goat, then once there- changed our mind and went to another place where there Chicken Caesar Salad was really good. Downtown Chicago is wonderful but I have done my walking for the weekend. Great night life but ready to go to bed. 3.30am-10.15pm. Long Day with out a nap.

Saturday - Aug 23rd
Corner Baker Cafe
8.44am - Good Morning!!! Im alive and Im free,who wouldnt want to be me. Sorry - thats a Keith Urban song. I had a great sleep and just finished a 30min swim. I am at a place called Corner Bakery Cafe where my oatmeal was Fantastico! Dad and I just finished breakfast and now he is out walking again. The man loves to walk. Pretty excited about today. I will be doing a shake out 30min run soon, and then we head out to the Chicago Cubs game. We have to go to Wrigley field while here. Then, drop off bike, shave legs, rest. I feel fit right now. I am thankful for my life and for this very moment. Jen just text me how much she loves me. It is an amazing feeling when the Woman you Love, Loves you just as much. Anyway- over out!

4.43pm - Bucket List Check! I went to see the Cubs play today with my Dad. I have always been a sports junkie and I love to go to stadiums with so much history in it, and Wrigley Field is one of them. My run before was great. I felt really good and would love a sub 37min 10k tomorrow but I know if conditions are not in my favor, then I just need to run.  
The weather turned for the worst around 2pm. Crazy storm came in. WE are suppose to drop off our bikes from 3-9. I am going to wait until later. Why rush. I wont be able to sleep tonight anyway. 
Im now in the lobby sipping some coffee, eating a snack and just loving life. So many athletes here.

Sunday- Race Day
5.49pm - Race is Complete. What a day. Woke up at 3.30am. Walked my gear to Transition (1mile walk). Then walked back to hotel and was back by 4.45am. I did my business in there and did my warm up from the hotel. I then walked to the swim start (.1mi walk) and was ready to roll. I went in having goals. One was a timed goal, the other was an Overall goal amongst the Elite Field (anyone who has gone under 2.10 (not including the Pros). 
Time went out the window once I saw our conditions. We had 15-20mph winds and our swim was extremely rough. I had a bad swim, a good bike, and a bad run but apparrantly most athletes did because I finished 20th amongst the elites and 20th out of 2,708 men on a pretty bad performance from me. I can not complain with my overall position. I am ready to prepare for my big Race of the year- Oceanside, CA!!! I cant wait, and again- thank you Filters Fast and TriBikeTransport for making these races possible. So excited. 
TriBike Transport - I love them!
In the end, I had a great time with my Dad. I raced one of the biggest races in the US and competed with the best of them. Tomorrow morning, I wake up- swim and then on to work! 





My Dad always sits like this.


Sweet view of Chicago
Sunset



Enough said in this pic (note- the water was like glass the day before the race)

Yep- Glass. Then the next morning, not so Glassy ;)

Easy Jog along the lake

We were not in the executive club. WE are were in the cheapest seats but they were GREAT!

On my way to the Bike Drop off.

Pre RACE dinne and wine with Pops.

Choppiness and chaos!

So thankful For Jen and her support. She is AMAZING!



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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

SWIM WORKOUT

I dont normally post or single out one workout, but I am super pumped with what just went down in the pool.

This was my workout today (Solo- no one else)

5 x 1,000yds w/ 1min Rest break after each

1) With Pull Bouy
2) Freestyle no toys
3) With Pull Bouy - faster than #1 time
4) Freestyle no toys - faster than #2 time
5) Pull Bouy and Paddles - Faster than #4

1) 14.43min
2) 14.27min
3) 14.32min
4) 14.18min
5) 14.08min

This is not a speed workout. Its more of a mental (100 laps) workout along with building my endurance while at a comfortable pace.

300yds into the 4th one I was ready to call it quits. My feet were cramping, my mouth was dry, I was starving, and I was getting tired. However, the voice inside my head told me to keep going along with Jen who always tells me no excuses-kept creeping in my head.

5,000yds total in 1 hr 18min (including the rest).

G

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

RACING BREAKDOWN

OH man, Im pumped!!!

Yes, I get enthusiastic when you put in the work day in and day out and it comes out on race day. 

Having a 40 hour week job, that I love, a woman that I love, and her 2 kids, that I love, is not an excuse if its something I want bad enough and a goal I want to reach. 

If you have a dream or goal, you can NOT have excuses and you have to make sure your loved ones support you. 

Sunday was my 7th race of the year. It was an Olympic Triathlon (1500m Swim, 25mi Bike, 10k Run). Jen and I started our journey Saturday around noon. We drove to the race which was a little under 3 hours from us. It was in a beautiful State park that we want to go back and camp there. So beautiful!

Anyway, an hour in to the drive, I realized I forgot my wetsuit at the house. I tweeted to the race director to see if the race would be wetsuit legal (water temps of 77degrees or colder) and sure enough- he responded yes. That was not good. Wearing a wetsuit is not so much for chilly temps but rather to make you swim faster. Alot faster. It keeps you buoyant so you use less energy. Also, it slices through the water better than your racing kit. 

But, we couldn't do anything about it so we cranked up the radio again and jammed to John Denver! :)

We arrived to the hotel, unpacked, and realized- I forgot our Toiletry bag. Jen is learning that I am pretty bad at forgetting stuff. So we went to Walmart and loaded up!

Anyway, after all that- we went to the race site, took in the views and then ate dinner at a great pasta joint. I also had my ritual Beer before a race and she did too :)

Race Day:

Woke up at 6.10am, left at 6.30, arrived at Transition at 7am. Got ready and raced at 8am. I of course had coffee. A race day must.

Swim:
    I was shivering, I always do  but the lack of wetsuit enhanced the chills. I looked at Jen and she was laughing at me.. Apparently, I was the only one without a wetsuit in the elite field. Anyway, horn blew and we were off. 3 guys sprinted out of the gates and then there was me and another guy. While I expect to be top 3 out of the water, this race- i didnt knowing they had the advantage with the wetsuits. So, I told myself- just swim as and get that out of my head.
The 3 guys swam the whole time together drafting off each other. It would have been nice to be with that group but I was not. I was 2min back by myself in 4th out of the water.

I did have a super fast transition since I did not have to bother taking off the wetsuit.

Bike:
   Passed 3rd place within the 1st mile of the 25mile loop. Then it was just me and the farmlands. Such a beautiful ride. No cars and just amazing scenery. It was really windy from mile 11-20 though. That was one long stretch into the wind.
In races, I always think Im lost on the bike. When you do not see anyone for miles, it really plays with your mind. But once I saw the 20mi marker, I knew I was close and mentally got prepped again. I biked the last 5miles very well.

My split average:
10mi - 23.0mph
10mi - 21.9mph
4.8mi - 23.2mph

Run:
   Coming in off the bike, I saw that 1st place was too far and 2nd place was close to 3min ahead of me. So once I started the run, I also saw no one was close to me from behind so the race was for me to catch 2nd. Plain and simple.
It was a 2x out and back 5k course (10k total). The first turn, I saw him struggling. The u-turn, at mile 2, I saw I was only 45sec back. I then caught up him at the 5k mark. Mentally, I told myself- do not let up. HE still my have an extra gear. In the end, I prevailed.

I took home 2nd place to add to a year worth remembering. 6 out of 7 races I have finished top 3 overall this year with the other one being a 6th.

I am so very happy!!

Next up- One week of fun exercising, then back at it for the 2nd half of the year.

I can not wait.

G






A nice shot of Kerr Lake

This was the only traffic on the bike course.

Coming out of the water

Saw a teammate at the race...

Before the race, I was jacked up on Coffee!

Before the race.




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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

CROSSFIT AND RUNNERS AND TRIATHLETES AND EVERYONE ELSE



    My simple viewpoint to all this madness going on out there with Cross-fit Haters/Bashers and Cross-fitters defending themselves IS THIS:

    If you are exercising and improving your health and want to preach it to the world then do it. Your happy and want everyone to know it. Let the ones complaining "de-friend or unfollow" you.

    Runners, Cyclists, Swimmers, Gym lifters, Cross-fitters, Jumping Jackers, Rowers, Tree Climbers, and any other Fit fanatic out there- its your choice on what route to go down but as long as you choose a healthy one instead of the Couch potato your flippin awesome and your trying!! Thats what matters.

    Please my friends, its not the end of the world if someone posts on social media about their workout. I'm pretty sure there are much more stuff going on in the world that is worse than that.

    And yes, Im a Triathlete. But my brother is a Crossfit Coach while serving our country and I respect what he does day in and day out. A little respect goes along way.

Peace- time to go bike and run ;)

G

Sunday, May 18, 2014

4 RACES IN 4 WEEKS

     Yes! The time has come for a day off. My 2nd day off from training in 2014. And its a great one!. I got to sleep in, drink lots of coffee on the front porch with Jen and make a great breaky. Then watched a movie all before 10am (I didnt really sleep in, but i did wake up without an alarm).

     Anyway, so my races. 5k, duathlon (5k run, 20kbike, 3k run), Sprint Triathlon (350m ocean swim, 1.5mi run, 14mi bike, 1.5mi run, 350m ocean swim), and an Olympic Triathlon (1500m swim, 27mi bike, 10k run) - All done in 4 weeks. Results - 1st, 3rd, 6th, 3rd. And a tri earlier in the year is my 5th one. That was a 1st overall.

Yesterday's race recap was a doozy!

     I woke up at 3.45am. The weather was 41 degrees. I did my pre race prep and headed out the door. The drive was over an hour to race cite. I arrived to sign up for the race (waited too long to pre-register)  and was NOT FEELING IT! It was freezing. I was physically tired. I called Jen and told her Im coming home. Its too cold. She then gave me a pep talk which changed my mind along with me seeing Jimmie Johnson (the NASCAR driver) out there doing the race. I refuse to let a NASCAR driver be tougher than me. ;)

So I signed up and got my transitions ready. 

Swim - Felt great. The lake temps felt good compared to the air temps and the lake calmness was refreshing after last week's ocean swim. One guy went crazy in the water and was gone from the gun. Come to find out, he went to the Olympic Trials for the 1500m swim. He killed me. But I was 2nd so that was awesome!

Bike - Freezing! Way too cold the first 5miles but I figured everyone else had to endure the pain. I got in a rythym and limmited the damage on what is my weakest leg of a triathlon. I had the 13th fastest bike which is not good but not bad. 

Run - I felt slow. Flat out. Slow. Come to find out, I end up having the 2nd fastest Run time of the day as well which was great. A couple athletes got lost on the course as did I, and some really paid the price. It was confusing thats for sure. At the end of the day, I am very happy I raced instead of driving home and taking a 2 hr ride at 5am for no reason :)


Thats it in a nutshell. Morale of the last 4 weeks:

There will be times when you doubt yoruself; Times when you dont want to do something even though you know after it you will feel amazing, but at the moment it just doesnt seem worth it. 

Split deicisons in our life could be the key to our future whether its take a job in a different state, send that email to your boss, say those 3 words to a girl, go back to bed or get your workout in. For all these decisions, asking help from God is probably not a bad thing ;)

Alright, here are some pics of the last 2 weeks. :)











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Sunday, April 27, 2014

3 WEEKS OF TRAINING, LIFE, and PICTURES

Hello!

I love pics. Simple as that. I feel like they tell so much more and are far more exciting than paragraphs. So below are pics from my last 3 weeks. Life has been good. 
I did lose a Coach and Mentor back home who was too young to die, but I have come across many of those situations in my life already and I'm just 26. I have learned that crying and always thinking of them is actually a Great thing. Why not keep those memories.. Don't ever let someone tell you otherwise. 

Swim: Swimming is going great!!! Just feel like a fish in the water (I'm not by any-means - rather slow compared to a fish) 

Bike: Last week I biked 200 miles.. That was awesome. Feeling fit but definitely need to get faster.

Run: Ran a 5k on my birthday in which I won. It was local and thought why not give money to our small town. Come to find out, no one showed up and I won. I ran 2 miles fast then slowed on the 3rd mile. That makes 3 races this year: A Triathlon (1st Overall), A Trail 5k Race (2nd overall), 5k Road Race (1st Overall)

I hope the streak continues. Time to do some multisport racing!

Strep Throat Excitement!!!
Sometimes, looking back isn't such a bad thing.
My 3 azalea bushes are blooming !
Time for a Workout w/ my Pace crew
Not too thrilled for the cold temp waters
First meal with fresh food from our garden!
I thought this was a cool photo of my front porch.
It's Spring Time! My backyard is coming around (Proud Owner)
I do this alot before a workout. Make a Latte and hang out side... I always try and slow down life.

She is my Good luck charm. Not just with Racing. With Life....

Front Yard- Yes- yard work is my hobby!

Everyone wanting to ride 53 miles with me on my Birthday- Pretty cool! ;)


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