Monday, June 28, 2010

Recovery Drink: Rockin' Refuel

As many of my long time readers know I am a big proponent of the importance of recovery drinks.  I have tried pretty much everything on the market and have a strong opinion on quite a few recovery drinks available today.  My experience with all of these different recovery drinks has left me rather pessimistic about the vast majority of them.  So when the good people at Shamrock Farms sent me a bottle each of Rockin' Refuel in Chocolate, Strawberry, and Vanilla Flavors it would be fair to say I was skeptical at best.

So what is Rockin' Refuel?  Here is what the Shamrock Farms Fact Sheet states:

Recent scientific findings show that chocolate milk is the original protein drink ideal for post-exercise refueling. In response, Shamrock Farms has developed a first-of-its-kind optimal sports recovery beverage – Rockin’ Refuel™ protein-fortified chocolate milk.
 This low-fat, 100 percent milk provides the same great taste and essential nutrients as milk, plus 20 grams of protein to refuel athletes. With 20 grams of protein and naturally-occurring electrolytes, Rockin’ Refuel™ is an excellent source of calcium, magnesium, riboflavin, phosphorous and Vitamin D.It is formulated without the use of high-fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners. 
Okay so what the heck does all that mean above?  

Well, to sum it up Rockin' Refuel is Chocolate Milk with a higher Protein content (20G).  That is it.  Very simple but yet it does what it says. 

 I particularly like that it has a higher calorie count (290-300 calories).  For us Triathletes we burn calories like crazy and we need a recovery drink that helps us to replenish.  Other drinks like Muscle Milk Light only have 100 calories and this just does not give us the fuel we need.  Regular Chocolate Milk is also a pretty darn good recovery drink but it doesn't have the high amount of Whey Protein that the Rockin' Refuel does.  The carb count is about the same.

Now that it has past my rigorous standards of nutritional content the next question is how does it taste?

The day I received the Rockin' Refuel I had a 25 mile bike ride scheduled with my buddy Steve and I figured why not try it out.  Steve and I put in a good effort in the 90+ degree Houston heat and we were ready for post workout nutrition immediately after the ride.  Steve swigged down the vanilla and I slammed the chocolate and Steve's opinion summed up the overall taste of the Rockin' Refuel when he said, "Damn, that was good!"

Yes, it was very good.  It comes in a 12oz container and I probably could have chugged down four of them.  But that would have been excessive for my needs so it was just the one.  The next day after a run I tried the Strawberry and it was very good as well.  I would drink it with meals, it is that tasty!

So far it gets an "A" for nutritional content and an "A+" for taste so the final question is how did my body feel the next day after taking the drink?  

That one is a little tougher to gauge.  See in my experience with Recovery Drinks it usually takes a few days to really feel the effects of them.  I felt fine the next day and had only very minor soreness in my muscles but my normal diet consists of a rather high protein count so it would be impossible for me to isolate if the Rockin' Refuel helped.  So in terms of did my body recover better I will have to score this as an incomplete until I get a chance to use it over a longer period of time.

Overall the Rockin' Refuel gets the Carrots approval as a Recovery Drink - it is all natural, tastes good, and has a good ratio of proteins and carbs.  

And it is cheap at only $1.39 per drink.

If you would like to try some Rockin Refuel CLICK HERE for a site that will show you where it is sold in your state.

Thanks for Reading,


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sunday Morning Weekly Recap ...

I hope everyone out there in bloggerville had a wonderful week.  This was the first week of my 20-Week HIM Training and it went extremely well.  Here are my weekly totals:

Swim      4 Workouts     9750 yds        4hrs 25 mins
Bike       4 Workouts     112.5 miles     6hrs 15 mins
Run        4 Workouts     17.51 miles     2hrs 45 mins
                                   Total Time      13hrs 25mins

  • This was also my first week of Master's swim.  It is two sessions a week at 5am on Tues and Thurs.  The coach made a few adjustments to my stroke and within 5 minutes I felt like a swimmer.  Amazing.  I went from struggling to swim a 2:00/100 to easily doing 1:40/100.  If I can keep dragging my butt out of bed at 4:15am for these classes then my swim is going to be so much stronger for my next 70.3 on November 7th.
  • Yesterday I went on a group ride out in Coldsprings Texas.  It is about an hour north and I never even knew it existed.  HOLY HILLS BATMAN!  This was my first real attempt at doing hills.  According to my friends Garmin we did over 2000ft of climbing - which is a ton for this flatlander.  We did 56 miles and I got dropped around mile 42 - it was awesome.  I have found a group that are stronger riders than me and they are so going to help me get stronger on the bike. Thanks Mike, Patrick, Tina, Jennifer and Jama for the great ride!  The hills along with the stifling Texas heat and humidity were extremely humbling and I cannot wait to go back to Coldsprings.  Oh, since we have all been talking about snakes lately - I ran over a rattlesnake that was like a foot wide and 5 ft long.  It was ginormous!  I have never seen a rattler that big.  Actually it is the first rattler I have seen in Texas in the 6 years I have lived here - used to see them all the time when I lived in MD and PA.  We have more of a water moccassin and copperhead population in SE TX.
  • My current weight is 160lbs.  That means I lost 2 lbs during this weeks training.  When I gain weight it always shows in my stomach.  I had a slight Muffin Top belly going on for the last 6 weeks and it is already gone - just amazing how this sport leans up your body.
  • Some rather big news!  I officially registered for Ironman Texas on May 21st, 2011.  It is still open (as of right now) so if you want in you better sign up soon.  The RD left a message on that is was filling up even quicker than expected.  Even cooler is that some friends (Mike, Patrick, Bobby, Diane, Suzy, and Todd) have also enter.  This is cool because we will have a nice group to do the long boring training with.  My plan is to train my butt off for the IronStar in Novemeber and then begin a 24-Week Full Ironman training program the first week of December.  Unfortunately with the timing of the Ironman I will not be able to do the 50K Texas Trail Run in December or the January Houston Marathon with my wife (will do the half instead).  The reason is that these long runs take multiple days to recover and I cannot afford to lose those training days.
  • BUT we will still be doing the Tough Mudder in Austin on the weekend of February 5th, 2011.  Big Daddy Diesel Scott from TriDiesel is coming down to the Lone Star State for the race and we are cordially inviting all our other blogger buddies to join us!  We are thinking this could be a big old blogger meet up. We would all be one team and compete together.  So if you guys are interested check out the Tough Mudder link and let us know!  Over the next few months Scott and I will post more details.
  • MOTIVATION - I am watching Any Given Sunday right now and the overall movie is average but in one of the scenes Al Pacino gives a pregame pep talk to his team that always seems to get me fired up.  So if you are looking for a kick in pants to get your workout started watch this clip and then go tear it up:
Now get out there and fight for that inch!

Thanks for Reading,


Friday, June 25, 2010

Anchor Blue Discount ...

If you have an Anchor Blue Store by you it is the Friends and Family Discount Weekend.  My wife works for Anchor Blue so she asked if I would put this up on the blog for my readers.  Print this out and you'll get a 30% Discount off everything:

She said to highlight and print out this coupon and take it to the store to receive the discount.

Have a great weekend everyone!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I Ain't Gonna Lie ... I just peed in my pants a little

It is official:  IRONMAN TEXAS
May 21, 2011

Here is the description:

About the event

Athletes will begin with a 2.4-mile swim in Lake Woodlands. Next is a 112-mile bike course that will take participants west through the scenic, rolling farmland of east Texas. The day ends with a 26.2-mile run course entirely within The Woodlands that concludes with a spectacular finish on Market Street.
 Registration opens online this Friday - Count me in!


Monday, June 21, 2010

And the Anti - Monkey Butt Winner is ...

Thanks for everyone who entered for a chance to win some Anti Monkey Butt Powder!

My count had us at 96 entries and I used to tabulate the winners.  I just wrote all the names down and then assigned a number to each entry - pretty simple!

The winner of the Female Anti Monkey Butt Powder is (#47):

MANDY!  From the Caratunk Girl Blog.

The winner of the Original Anti Monkey Butt Powder is (#5):

Congrats to Mandy and Matt!  Please send me an email (jeffirvin AT gmail DOT com) with your shipping address to claim your prize. 

If you are looking to win another cool prize check the GoLite Giveaway a Kovas's Midwest Multisport Life Blog.
First Master's swim class tomorrow - 4:15 am wake up!  Later Blogosphere!


Sunday, June 20, 2010

New Training Begins Tomorrow ...

Tomorrow is the start of my new training and I'd like to thanks Kevin @ Ironman By Thirty for doing me a solid by emailing me a spreadsheet with the HIM plan I have been working on - Essential Week-By-Week Training Guide by Matt Fitzgerald.  If you have not seen this plan it has about 15 pages of codes that represent individual workouts in each swim, bike or run session.  Extremely meticulous.  These codes need to be input into each training session.  I was already through about 6 weeks (of 20) of manual entry when Kevin offered to send me the plan with an entire workbook with the codes already entered into a Lookup Page.  It was still a pain to go through and change the codes to fit the actual plan but Kevin literally saved me HOURS -- Thank You Kevin!

Here is what Week One of the plan looks like (Click image to see expanded view):
If you notice on the plan the days run from Tuesday - Sunday.  So this means I get to begin tomorrow with the scheduled Monday REST DAY - rather anti-climactic huh?

If anyone would like a copy of the spreadsheet send me an email (jeffirvin AT gmail DOT com) and I will forward it on to you.  But if you are going to use this plan you probably want to pickup the book (pretty cheap on Amazon) because it explains everything in detail. It has 42 plans from Sprints all the way up to Full Iron Distance and you can choose which level of volume best fits your life and schedule.  Here is the Amazon Link:

  • Had a good workout with my Tri Club yesterday morning. We had a social run which you could choose 2, 4, or 6 miles, I did 4 miles.  Then Bobby, Patrick, Steve, and I stayed and got in about 18 miles on the bike.  Bobby and I were going to stay and get some more miles in but it was already about 95 degrees by 10am so we called it a day.  Thanks to Jama, Mike, and Diane for putting the run together!
  • I watched "Shutter Island" last night.  It was a psychological thriller directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio.  It was much better than what I thought it was going to be!  About time a decent movie has made it to my DVD player.  It was extremely well produced and the acting was excellent.   It has a very cool twist to it that made the movie.  I'd give it  4 out 5 stars - would be a good watch on the trainer or treadmill.
  • My wife is home from her work trip today so we are going to hit the grocery store and load up on all the essential foods for my training.  I see lots of Chicken and veggies in my future.
  • My weight this morning was 162 lbs.  I like to race around 150 lbs so it will be fun to see how quickly I can get to that weight over the next 20 weeks.
  • Check this out - Already got the Tat ready if Ironman Texas is a go (maybe Shutter Island wasn't that good if I had time to make this while watching it!):

... or with a bigger Texas:

Thanks for Reading,


Thursday, June 17, 2010

Ramble On ...

... for now I smell the rain, and with it, pain
and it's headed my way
Aw, sometimes I grow so tired
but I know I've got one thing I got to do
A-ramble on, ...

No I am not talking about most of my posts, but the fact that my HIM Training plan is about ready to commence - June 21st.

Yep, it is time to go from Fat n' Happy to Lean n' Mean. The pain is headed my way.  Starting on Monday I will be following The Essential Week-by-Week Training Guide by Matt Fitzgerald.  He has over 42 different training plans from Sprint to Full Iron Distance and I have decided to follow the Level 10 Half-Ironman Plan.  I am putting the entire plan on a Google Spreadsheet and will share it with ya'll when it is complete (probably tomorrow).  Here is the description of the Level 10 Plan:  

If time is no object and you have trained as much as 18 to 20 hours a week in the past, then this is your half-Ironman training plan. It begins with 8,600 yards of swimming, 6 hours and 15 minutes of cycling, and 2 hours and 56 minutes of running in Week 1.  It peaks with 12,950 yards of swimming, 10 hours and 10 minutes of cycling, and 4 hours and 55 minutes of running in Week 17.

Why would I choose such an aggressive plan you ask?  Mainly because I want to see how my body handles this type of volume because if the Ironman comes to the Woodlands, and it looks like a darn near certainty at this point, then I want to start loading up the base now and see how I respond.  Also, I really want to push it at the IronStar 70.3 and see what time I can drop properly trained.  So, it is time to get myself ready to Bring It for the next 20 weeks!

  • In order to help with my poor swimming I have signed up for a Master's Swim Program.  It will be on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5am and fits into my training plan - nice, I know!
  • Jason at the Tech Tri Blog is giving away a 10 mega-pixel camera.  Get on over there and become a follower and win yourself this awesome prize.  This isn't some stupid gel or butt powder people this is a real camera -- go ... now ... I'll wait here for you to come back!
  • This morning I went to my gym and did a Lactate Threshold Test.  The main reason is I wanted to know my max HR so I could figure out my training zones for my upcoming plan.  I've been told that the old standard for figuring out your Max HR of 220 - (Your Age) was outdated.  Well, after this stupid little test they are pretty much the exact same - plus or minus a few beats.  I was not impressed with the test at all.  Basically I was on a treadmill with a mask that supposedly registered my oxygen output.  Every couple of minutes the speed and incline of the treadmill would be increased.  This only lasted for like 12 minutes and my HR only got up to 141 BPM.  I am no tech guru or fitness expert but this seemed to be a little short to get any type of accurate readings?  Oh, well, I guess it is what it is?
  • My wife is away for work in LaLa Land so I've watched a couple of movies this week:  The Book of Eli - I'd like to write up a recap of this Denzel Washington post apocalyptic thriller but that would be a disservice to both words and my keypad.  On a scale of 1 to 5 this movie receives a rating of monkey shit.  Next I watched another thriller (using this word loosely) called Legion.  Legion looked like it was going to be a badass sci-fi, shot 'em up, type of flick.  It was just that if you remove the word 'badass' and replace it with 'utterly awful'.  This one was so bad it doesn't even really deserve to be placed on a rating scale.  If you have the chance to watch either of these movies do not ... you've been warned.
  • A buddy from my Tri Club has started up a website called Lake Houston Endurance.  If you are a local runner, cyclists, swimmer or Triathlete it is designed to help you find group workouts in the Lake Houston area.  Go check it out because it could be a good way for us to communicate events.
  • Lastly, Don't forget about the Anti-Monkey Butt Powder Giveaway.  If you haven't registered to win a bottle either page down or Click Here.  Contest ends Monday June 21st.
Okay, you probably thought I was gong to go the entire post and not cite the quote above.  Well, it is from Led Zeppelin's Ramble On, one of my all time favorite songs ... Enjoy:


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Win a Trip to France or some Vibrams ...

I got an email about this contest and thought you guys might want to sign up as well.  First place is a trip to France (which is a very cool place despite all the French people) to see the ultra trail running championship.  And Twenty second place prizes to win a Vibram Five Fingers shoe.   Maybe if one of you win the trip I can be your +1 -  I am an awesome travel companion and can drink mass quantities of alcohol and still wake up on time, a skill I am very proud of,  so I can be like your personal alarm clock ....just saying:

May the force be with you ...


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

WIN Some Anti Monkey Butt Powder ...

Anti Monkey Butt Powder (AMBP) Give-Away

Disclaimer: Anti Monkey Butt Powder is not recommend as Nutrition

Now is your chance to win a bottle of AMBP to help soothe that red bum!

We are going to giveaway a bottle of original Anti Monkey Butt Powder to one lucky guy :
And we will giveaway a bottle of the Lady Anti Monkey Butt Powder to one lucky gal:

You are going to have 5 opportunities to win:

1.  Leave a comment stating how excited you are to rid your self of Monkey Butt, and if you have an ambiguous screen name let me know if you are a dude or dudette.  If you make me laugh another entry will be added for you!

2.  Become a Follower of Dangle the Carrot (Right Side ---->>>) - Leave another comment that you did (if already a follower you will automatically get an entry).

3. Follow AMBP on Facebook by CLICKING HERE  - Leave another comment that you did.

4. Follow AMBP on Twitter by CLICKING HERE - Leave another comment that you did.

5.  Tweet about this contest on your own Twitter account, Facebook, and/or mention on your blog - Leave another comment that you did.

You now have 5 (6 if you make me laugh) entries to win Anti Monkey Butt Powder and give your Butt the soothing relief that it so desires.  This contest will run until Monday, June 21st, closing at noon.  After that I will use to decide both the male and female winners.  On Monday Night I will post the winners name and you will have 72 hours to claim your prize.  If you do not claim your prize in this time frame the entries will be re-entered into and a new winner will be named. 

Please leave me a comment if you have any questions!

Thanks for Reading and Good Luck to all on winning a bottle of Anti Monkey Butt Powder!


Monday, June 14, 2010

Anti Monkey Butt Review ...

Anti Monkey Butt Powder

What is Monkey Butt you ask? Well, according to the Anti Monkey Butt website it is a term used by motorcycle riders to describe the soreness, itching and redness that occurs when you ride and sweat on a motorcycle for hours.  If you have to walk bowlegged like a monkey to prevent your skin from rubbing, you have Monkey Butt!

Now that we have that cleared up let us replace the words "motorcycle riders" and "motorcycle" with "cyclists" and "road bike" and re-read the above sentence.  Now you can see how this fits in to a triathlete's life!

Ohhhh, all starting to come together now?  

As triathletes we spend a lot of time sitting on our butts!  In a normal Half Ironman training program it is not unusual to have over 8 hours a week sitting on your butt in the saddle and even more if training for a full Iron Distance. And you know what this leads to right?  Monkey Butt!

We have all been there.  That soreness and irritation in that area that is not fun to have soreness and irritation.  We get off the bike and sort of slide our shorts down just a little bit so they no longer contact skin.  We do that goofy looking wide legged walk and cannot wait to change our shorts and when we finally do we have Monkey Butt.  Not very good times my friends.

The good news is there is a solution and it is aptly named Anti Monkey Butt Powder.  So when the nice folks at Robin Leedy & Associates sent me some Anti Monkey Butt Powder to sample the least I could do was try it out and write up a review.

The Review:

Day 1 -  It is a Wednesday evening and the temperature is 92 degree with about 70% humidity.  It is soaking wet hot outside.  I opened up the Anti Monkey Butt Powder and the thing I liked was that it had a pleasant smell.  Very talcum powder like but not nearly as strong.  It was liberally poured onto my chamois in my bike shorts and then I pulled those suckers up.  The first thing I noticed was that I did not notice a thing.  The powder absorbed right into my chamois - excellent!  I jumped on my bike and within about a mile was already dripping sweat.  

After about 30 minutes it was time to head back to the house.  Once back I remembered the whole purpose of this ride was to try out the Anti Monkey Butt Powder.  That is very cool because it meant I forgot all about it and the reason I forgot all about it was that I had zero irritation -  Zilch, nadda!  Trial One was very successful.

Day 2 - The first trial was extremely positive but it was such a short ride that I figured an additional test on a longer ride would be needed until I could write my final review.   Bike is loaded on the car and I was off to Deussen Park to get in 25 miles.  I got there and once again sprinkled a liberal amount of the powder onto my chamois and was off.  It was 84 degrees at 7am and you could literally see the humidity in the air.  It was an extremely uncomfortable morning which is exactly the test conditions that were needed.

The total ride time last one hour and thirty-five minutes over 25.33 miles.  Not one time did I need to stand up and readjust the junk on the saddle or shift to one side or the other to prevent irritation.  And just like the ride on Wednesday no Monkey Butt was experienced.  My backside actually felt pretty good.  I would even go as far to say that my butt felt rather soothed!


After two rides in hot and humid conditions I feel confident in giving Anti Monkey Butt Powder two enthusiastic thumbs up.   This stuff does what it says it does which is absorb excess sweat and reduce frictional skin irritation.  In my opinion the best thing about Anti Monkey Butt Powder is that it is easy and clean to apply. I have tried a similar gel based product in the past which is messy and cumbersome to apply.  The powder delivery system of Anti Monkey Butt Powder is much more convenient when compared to the gel based ones.

Anti Monkey Butt Powder also comes in gender specific formulas.  Meaning that the gals should use the pretty looking and smelling Pink Bottles:

And the guys should use the manly looking Yellow bottles:

Now after reading how I no longer have a red and irritated bum you are probably wondering how you too can rid yourself of the dreaded Monkey Butt.  The Anti Monkey Butt Powder can be purchased at the company website (here) or if you cannot wait another minute you can run out now to a number of different retailers (here).

AND ...

Tomorrow morning I will be running a Give-Away and one lucky guy and gal will each have multiple chances to win a bottle of Anti Monkey Butt Powder.  Check back tomorrow for details!


**Disclaimer:  This product review is my opinion alone.  Only my butt was used to conduct the research and no monkeys were harmed during the review.  Product was issued to me free of charge but other than sample product I received no compensation for the review.**

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Ironman Texas?

For about a year there has being rampant speculation among the Triathlete community in SE Texas that the WTC has been trying to bring a full Ironman race in the The Woodlands, TX.

Seriously, not a race went by that you wouldn't hear some rumblings in the background about this.  Everyone had a theory or heard something but nothing ever seemed to be anything other than a rumor.  The two big Triathon forums, BeginnerTriathlete and Slowtwitch, both had numerous threads just fanning the rumor mill fires and not letting this die.  Well, yesterday the rumor mill got another kick to its proverbial butt with the latest news that on June 23rd The Woodlands Township Board of Directors is meeting to discuss the economic ramifications of bringing Ironman to their community.  Here is an excerpt from the public document (or click here):

Receive and consider a major event coming to The Woodlands 
BUDGET IMPACT:World Triathlon Corporation is seeking an advertising sponsorship fromThe Woodlands Convention & Visitors Bureau as well as in kind trade commitment from The Woodlands Township.

FACTS:Memorial Hermann – The Woodlands approached The Woodlands Township and The Woodlands Convention & Visitors Bureau about establishing a major triathlon competition known as “Ironman®,”produced by World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), with the event to take place in and around The Woodlands.

WTC has been working diligently to secure all the necessary approvals to produce its newest domestic Ironman event in and around The Woodlands with various entities including local law enforcement, county commissioners, railroad authorities, local hotels and businesses, and The 
Woodlands Township and Convention & Visitors Bureau.

WTC points out the following information:

Opportunity for residents of The Woodlands to see some of the greatest enduranceathletes in the world;

The Woodlands is attractive to WTC as the venue for this premier event as TheWoodlands is known as a world class community – home to hundreds if not thousands of world class athlete that would welcome the opportunity to host and participate in such a renowned event as Ironman

;There will be hundreds of volunteer opportunities for residents of The Woodlands toparticipate in the event and Ironman will commit to providing $100,000 annually to local charities;

The Ironman Triathlon consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike and a 26.2-mile runcompleted in succession within a 17-hour timeframe

.The event would serve as one of 23 global qualifying races for the Ford Ironman WorldChampionship that takes place each October in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

.Throughout its 32-year history, Ironman has transformed from an event into a lifestyleand sports brand that continues to inspire millions each year to take on new personal challenges and demonstrate the mantra, “Anything Is Possible?”;

Attract 2,500 participants from nearly all 50 states and 25+ countries

;Nationally and internationally televised, creating 1.5 million in advertising impressionsfor The Woodlands on a global scale; and

Create an economic impact of $15.9 million through the sale of thousands of hotel roomnights, retail shopping, food and beverage dinners and sales.

Venues for an Ironman event in The Woodlands would include Northshore Park, Lake Woodlands, The Woodlands Waterway, Town Green Park, Waterway Square, The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel & Convention Center and numerous restaurants and retail shops.

A full report will be presented to The Woodlands Convention & Visitors Bureau on Wednesday, June 23, 2010 at 4:30 p.m. and for The Woodlands Townships Board of Directors at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 23, 2010.

Let me now show you why this would be so darn cool for yours truly:

View Larger Map

Point A is where I live and Point B is the center of The Woodlands.  How cool would it be to have an Ironman in your backyard?  Now the real question is what month will they hold the Ironman.  The weather in SE Texas can be extremely hot and humid as early as May and as late as October.  The same crazy rumor mill has the race being help on Memorial Day weekend - it was 95 degrees this Memorial Day weekend! 

This area could easily accommodate an Ironman.  Plenty of hotels, shopping, restaurants, bike shops ..etc are available.  There are some excellent farm roads featuring both flats and rolling hills and the swim could be done in Lake Woodlands.  It might have to be a two loop swim which easily could be done in Lake Woodlands.

I guess we will all see what happens but whatever does this has been extremely fun to follow.

Oh, get your reservations in now to stay a Casa de Carrot for Ironman Texas 2011!

Thanks for Reading,


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Saturday Morning Test Ride ...

I went over to Alexander Deussen Park this morning with the hopes of getting in around 25 miles or so.  This ride had two goals:  To try out the new wheels and to field test the Anti-Monkey Butt Powder.  Today I will talk about the wheels and tomorrow we will discuss the Monkey Butt Powder!

Deussen is a great place to ride up until about 10am.  It is on Lake Houston and has extremely low amounts of traffic in and around the park. Once you hit about mid-morning it starts to get a little crowded so I only go here in the early AM.

Here is my route today:

According to the Gamin I did 25.33 miles in 1:35 minutes.  However, I stopped a few times and took some photos to share how nice a Saturday morning can be in Texas.  My actual ride time was around 1:26 minutes.

Onto the Pics:

In the driveway:  One more pic of the Disc Rear and Zipp Front

Anti Monkey Butt Powder -- hehehe

Tires Pumped Up and Ready to Ride

Oh No!  This is a lock on the port-o-potty door ... hello woods!

Lake Houston and huge parking area.

Not all Sand and Cacti here Folks!

Lake Houston again.

Proof I didn't steal these from the internet

The Rare Road with a Bike Lane.

More Green!

Saw a Water Moccassin swimming here after this shot.  Tried to get a pic but it dived when I walked up on it. It was at least 6 ft long!

Look Kids Buffaloes!

Caution:  Do not F with the Buffaloes!

Still Smiling Afterwards!

For you Gearheads: Overhead of Clearance between Disc and Cassette.

Aside from seeing Buffaloes and Snakes it was a rather uneventful ride.  This was the first time putting any distance on the new wheelset and also my first time ever riding on a tubular.  The overall ride did seem to be less "bumpy" than previous rides here and I really like the way the tubular handled.  I can see why other riders swear by them because the word to best describe the tubular is - Smooth.

As for the disc I spent a few minutes sprinting in front of the open area next to the lake and the winds were extremely high (25mph+).  I rode back and forth a few times to see if the winds would make steering difficult.  And quite frankly I could not tell a difference between the disc and without the disc. Now I did not take the disc off and go without so this makes my unscientific test even more unscientific, but I never even felt the wind push the tire - not even a little. 

As for aero, I did a few intervals when I wasn't off snapping photos and was able to maintain 22-23mph in the same gears as I maintain that speed on a flat with my regular trainers.  Once again, not scientific but if using the RPE method I'd estimate the effort to be the same with or without the disc and carbon front.

Overall, I do like this wheelset even if the performance is negligible,  they still look damn sexy! 

Okay, off to get in some laps - so much for resting up!

Thanks for Reading,


Friday, June 11, 2010

Consumer Reports: Alert Protein Drinks

My Uncle Frank emailed me an article from Consumer Reports yesterday about the hazards of Protein Drinks.  Click Here to read the article or just sit back and continue reading and I will briefly summarize the finding for you .

This is an interesting piece because both my wife and I supplement our diets with Whey Protein Shakes.  We wake up and have 48G of delicious protein shake each morning.  The reason being that we both are athletes and need to take in about one gram of protein per pound of body weight per day.  We have stuck to this theory and have had success with both weight loss and muscle recovery with this diet.  I figured since mostly endurance athletes read this blog you may find it interesting too.   So when Consumer Reports comes out with an article titled:
Alert: Protein drinks
You don't need the extra protein or the heavy metals our tests found

This was disappointing. Darn Consumer Reports why do always have to ruin everything?  I still remember the dark day they came out with a report that said the Mashed Potato Fried Chicken Bowl from KFC was "not healthy".

Seriously Consumer Reports, you crusher of joy ... what is next?  You going to tell me puppies are bad for my health?

Anyway, As any lover of protein shakes and committed blogger would do I sat down and read the 4 page article in it's entirety.  Yes, I am  that committed to excellence over here at the Carrot!

Here is an excerpt from the first page:

Okay, so the title says "Alert Protein Drinks" and then you go onto to report, "For most drinks we tested, levels of those contaminants were in the low to moderate range, when we could detect them at all. "

Hmmm..... so most of the drinks are not that bad but you still felt the need to title your article with "Alert"?  And then CR continues with, "Nutritionists and trainers say they commonly see people who consume three servings a day."  

Okay Consumer Reports, let us have a little talk.  You are telling me that you are going to base this entire report on the assumption that Nutritionists and Trainers say they commonly see people consume three servings per day?  Wow, that is some crack reporting if I have ever seen it.  Way to really delve in to this one guys.  Oh, Consumer Reports, Nutritionists and Trainers have been known to advise people to follow the Atkins Diet too. But I digress ....

Now to continue on with the rest of the report.  Basically if you read the next 3 pages the article goes onto say that "some" people may abuse these drinks and that the manufactures do not have warning labels that say taking too much could be harmful.  They also fear that teens maybe abusing the drinks based on the marketing   by the manufacturing companies.

The take away from the article is don't over do it.  Really that is it.  These drinks have small levels of arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury and if you drink a crapload of Protein Drinks per day you will be exposing yourself to these heavy metals.

Here is a breakdown of the actual lab tests for each of the 15 drinks that CR tested:

In my opinion, Consumer Reports was driving the sensationalism bus down the exaggeration highway.  But by today's media standards I guess that is pretty much par for the course.

If you are using a drink a day to help supplement your protein intake because you are an athlete then this report is all smoke and no fire.  If you are the parent of a teenager who is drinking six Muscle Milks a day then this report has some use.  If you are heavy and trying to lose weight and drinking these shakes as replacements for all of your meals you need to stop and eat whole foods.

Really, just like everything in life, Protein Drinks should be used in moderation.  Consumer Reports could have saved the trees this article was printed on and just Tweeted:  Use Protein Drinks in Moderation.

Thanks for Reading,


**Disclaimer:  I am not a nutritionist, trainer, doctor, nurse, chemists or employee of a protein drink company.  Everything said here is my opinion and could be completely wrong, but since I am an American that is cool.  If you use protein drinks do your own independent research on that product..**