Thursday, May 28, 2009

I digress

This has nothing to do with triathlons. But I am a big Dave Matthews Band fan, and they do put on a good show. Turns out they are broadcasting a live show on Hulu Monday night. Cool!

In triathlon news, we are less than 2 days from my first triathlon! I'm getting excited!

Gear Wednesdays Returns!

I recently got new running shoes - Adidas Supernova. These shoes fit me great. I went on down to Everday Athlete on a recomendation from a friend. The guys there are great. To be honest I wasn't really sure what I was looking for. I knew that I needed new shoes, but other than that I had nothing. So the guy told me to run to the other side of the store. He brought out 4 pairs of shoes and that was that. These shoes are comfortable and have excellent stability. I over pronate (I believe that's the term for foot striking from outside on the heel to inside) and these shoes help correct that and give me a better stride.

Like I said, they are great shoes for me.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wetsuits Rock! [and further thoughts on crazy indoor bike rides]

Tonight, the fam and I went to lake so I could take the wetsuit for a test drive. It is awesome. As I get closer to the triathlon (less than 3 days!) I realize more and more how bad a swimmer I really am. I am not going to be setting any records in the swim. I will be finishing, hurray! I'm not really worried about that. What I was worried about was not being able to handle the swim portion. In a pool I can stop and rest, there are no waves, it's warm, I can stand up, etc. When the water is 30 feet deep, there is no standing. So I've been trying to practice all manner of rest strokes so that I can make it to the end of the 400m swim.

We got to the lake and my 3 year old gladly announced (quite loudly, too), "Daddy's getting naked!" The few people that were there looked nervously at one another and didn't turn around, in case there was some crazy hippie family getting their birthday suits on. Got the wetsuit on and headed to the water. Online says the water is 65 degrees (much cooler than the 85 degree pool at LA Fitness) but it was surprisingly refreshing. I don't know how much of that was the wet suit, but it felt good.

First observation on the wetsuit, it is really bouyant. This is just awesome. And the way they fit they put my body in a much better position for swimming, than my normal flailing. The suit is probably a touch big (I've heard that if the suit is tight than it is too big!) but works well. I also noted that if I need to catch my breath that I can still do freestyle with my head out of the water without my legs sinking. That is much better than side stroke or back stroke while I catch my breath.

Overall I'm looking forward to the swim, which is a much better outlook than just last week. Dan also had a sleeveless suit that I may try out tomorrow if I have time to get to the lake tomorrow.

Now on to my continuing thoughts about riding a bicycle indoors for 100 miles. Pros and Cons as follows:
  1. PRO: It can be easier than riding on the road because you can reduce the resistance level. I have a wind trainer that doesn't allow for much control over resistance. I can add a second drum, which makes it quite a bit more difficult to pedal. However, this second drum got bent by a previous owner and produces the nastiest road vibrations. Lets just say that I would have shaken myself into little pieces had I added the additional resistance.
  2. PRO: There are no hills. Yes! Most of the hills around my house are steep. They are hard, and make for very slow riding for a mile or two after ascending while my legs try to regain consciousness.
  3. CON: There are no hills. The best part of going up hills is going down them.  Which brings me to...
  4. CON: No coasting! The hardest part to accept about riding on a trainer is that when you stop pedaling, you stop moving. No more miles, yards, feet, inches. Nothing. If I was going to complete 100 miles, I had to pedal myself there. Harsh! I imagine that it was a lot like riding a fixie with coaster brakes.
That's all for now. Thanks for visiting.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Back to Life...Back from Vacation...And the Winner!

So... I've been away for a while. Studying for the last section of the CPA exam took all free time and repurposed it for a while. I was lucky to be able to blow off some steam by running/biking/swimming or swimming/biking/running or any other variation you can imagine.

So the end of the testing was May 15th, the next day we flew to AZ to visit my folks. A few days at high altitude (5,000 ft) were perfect for final preparations for...

100 Miles to Nowhere!

For those who aren't privy to what this means, I rode 100 miles INDOORS! I hooked my bike up to the old trainer and started riding.

I started just before 6 am. It took a good hour before the legs got moving. That first hour i managed to pound out 21.4 miles. The incredibles were helping me along. After hour 2 I found myself at 44.8 miles and feeling oddly okay. The farthest I've ridden before was 46 miles, so I was soon to be on new territory. Sometime during hour 2 my 3 year old daughter joined me and we changed the movie to Mulan. For some reason my mileage started going down after that...

Hour 3 ended at 65.5 miles, followed by 85.6 miles at 4 hours. This is when times got really tough. I wasn't doing well at that point. I had to do something to distract the mind from my screaming legs. The last 14.4 miles were brutal, but luckily manageable with a bit of reading.

So, 100 miles, my first century, inside, in 4 hours 41 minutes flat. With the Seattle-T0-Portland coming up in less than 2 months, this was a great preparatory trip. The awards ceremony consisted of waffles (yum!), a shower at my in-laws (hot water heater blew up while we were on vacation...kind of cliche isn't it?!), me crowning myself the winner of the entire 'my house' division, and an afternoon of yard work!

The real important part of this was the reason. $50 of every entry went to Team Fatty's LiveStrong Challenge to support cancer research and such.

Now 36 hours later I'm doing surprisingly well. The legs are incredibly tired, and I'm now tapering (read: not doing anything) for my triathlon on Saturday. Tomorrow will be a trip to the lake for a test drive of the wetsuit (thanks Dan!).