Sunday, January 31, 2010

Week Seven, Day Seven: 1hr Bike + Recaps

I was able to get in an hour on the trainer today.  I did a few intervals in the middle of the ride and overall the workout was solid.  My movie today was Watchmen and everyone knows the trainer goes by so much faster when you have a good movie!  Well, Watchmen made the hour ride seem like four hours - it was that bad.  It was extremely long and just boring as all hell.   Not to mention the story was just stupid.  Such a disappointment.

I had a pretty solid January with my training.  Here are the totals:

Run - 11h 27m 11s - 73.93 Mi
Bike - 14h 01m - 243 Mi
Swim - 5h 15m - 12000 M
-----------------------------
Total Time:  30hrs 43mins

February should be a solid month as well.  I have a couple of evening CE courses scheduled for work and they are local.  On Feb 13th and 14th we will be in Austin for the Austin Marathon so that is a training weekend and my my parents are visiting that weekend so maybe a day or two might be missed.  Looking to up the hours to the 35-37 range.

According to my training plan tomorrow is supposed to be a rest day.  Considering that I missed Friday I might try to get a run in tomorow.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Week Seven, Days 4, 5, & 6: Travel Complete and Sunday Ramblings and Links

I got back last night from my work trip to Dallas.  Being an Outside Sales Rep I am not real good at sitting in meeting rooms and listening to marketing and management people give presentations.  If you know me or have friends and family that are in an Outside Sales position you probably notice we are a different breed of people!  Some traits that we all seem to share are ADHD, stubbornness, sarcasm as a weapon, overtly outgoing, narcissism, independent, and pretty much across the board type A personalities.  Now put a group of these people together in a small conference room for a couple of days and aside from the large number of inappropriate jokes the conversation usually revolves around how our time is being wasted. 

Well, that was not the case at this meeting.  My company introduced a boatload of new products and resources to help make us all more successful at our jobs and I left feeling very optimistic about the upcoming fiscal year.  In 11 years and 3 different companies this is the first time I actually left one of these meetings, and there have been many,  feeling great about everything that was presented to us.  It was such a productive couple of days that I am not even upset about not being able to work out of either Friday or Saturday!

I did however get in an easy 30 minute run on Thursday morning and am jumping on the Bike as soon as I finish this post.  I will then get in an hour at the pool this evening!

Sunday Morning Ramblings and Link Dump:
  • I live in Kingwood Texas and love the Great State of Texas.  However, I was born and raised in Western Pennsylvania and my allegiance to Pittsburgh sports have never wavered.  When I was in college I spent a summer as an Intern for the Pittsburgh Penguins.  I worked in the Premium Seating department and had a chance to interact with many of the Penguins players including my all-time favorite player Mario Lemieux.  As good as a player as Mario was he is an even better person and I will always remember how gracious he was to myself and the other dorky interns.  So, when I read (here) that he is part of a group trying to buy the Pittsburgh Pirates from the current penny pinching owner Bob Nutting I was more than pleased.  Go get 'em Mario!

  • Cold Weather you can go away any time now!  Really, it is okay to leave, bye.

  • Today's Trainer movie is, "Watchmen" - Will let you know what I think later tonight.

  • I waste countless hours laughing at parodies on YouTube.  One of my all-time favorites is from the old Fox show, "The O.C".   I am embarrassed to admit that I used to watch this show (yes, I know, I am a 13- year old girl, leave me alone).  I think I actually stopped watching it after the Season 2 finale which ended with this clip:  HERE.  Aside from the awful acting this clip wasn't all that funny.  But then SNL went and did this parody of if:  HERE. Then the genius that is YouTube went wild with creative parodies such as this (The Office), this (300), this (The Matrix), this (The Departed), this (Lost), and my favorite- this (Reggie Bush).  Enjoy and I am sorry that stupid song is now stuck in your head!
Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Week Seven, Days Two & Three: 1hr and 2hr Indoor Trainer

I have been extremely busy with work this week and getting ready for my meetings that training has taken a back seat.  I got up at 4:30 the last two days and got in a ride on the trainer but the effort was average at best. I am a little sleep deprived and it won't get better until Saturday.  I should be home by 9 or 10 o'clock and it will be straight to bed.  Tomorrow morning I will get up and get a run in and then have to drive to Dallas.  I am going to try for a run on Friday morning also.  Saturday will be a rest day and the drive back to Kingwood and then Sunday will be back at it 100%

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Monday, January 25, 2010

Week Seven, Day One: 9.32 Mile Run 1.5 Hrs

This week is going to be a tough one!  I had to change my training schedule around because I am traveling for work on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I should be able to run early on Thursday and Friday mornings but Saturday is a half day of meetings and then a 4.5 hour drive back to Houston. 

So today I was scheduled to do a 1.5 hour run.  I wanted to do it before work but was having some stomach issues when I woke up so that didn't happen.   I got home around 6pm and immediately put on the Asics and hit the road.  The plan called for this to be an easy RPE 2 run and that is what I did.  My pace was only 10:09/mile as I did 9.32 miles in 1:34.   It was a little hard to hold back but I was already pretty much exhausted from a crummy sleep last night and a long day in the car so taking it easy was the smart thing to do.

Tomorrow is an hour on the trainer in the morning and then 45 minutes in the pool after work.

That's all I got tonight - off to bed!  Oh, not really digging "24" right now.  Can't put a finger on why yet?

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Week Six, Day Seven: Rest Day + Wk Six Recap + Sunday Morning Ramblings

With a rest day scheduled week 6 of my 20 week HIM Training program is in the books. Here is a recap of another decent training week:


Planned Training:
Swim - 2hr 15mins
Bike - 3hr 45mins
Run - 2hr 15mins
---------------------
Totals - 8hr 15mins


Actual Training:
Swim - 1hr 50mins (4500M)
Bike - 3hr 8mins (57.10 Mi)
Run - 2hr 11mins (15.09 Mi)
----------------------
Totals - 7hr 9mins (72.19 Mi + 4500m)

Not bad overall.  I came up about an hour short and that was from yesterday's bike ride getting cut due to rain and a shortened swim on Friday because of my poor time management.  But this is still a nice solid week especially since I was able to get in a 5k race.

Sunday Morning Ramblings:

  • Race fees have become outrageous.  I finally signed up last night for the Lone Star Oly Tri in Galveston this April 24th.  The cost of the race was $125.  That is no at all cheap.  But to make it even worse the site that I had to use to sign up for the race, Active.com, charged a $9 administration fee.  Just needed to vent!

  • I lived in Pennsylvania for my first 24 years so I have always known that Senator Arlen Specter is a complete and utter douche bag.  Now after he condescendingly and rather arrogantly told Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann to, "Act like a lady" during a recent radio interview the rest of the country can now see the a-hole that is Arlen Specter.  If you haven't heard this exchange Click Here for the audio and prepare to be offended.

  • BeginnerTriathlete.com is a wonderful site with excellent training tools.  I am a Silver member and am using the 1/2 IM Training plan available to members.  This week I have to go to Dallas for work Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  I was able to go to the BT planned calendar and make all the appropriate changes and tweaks to make the training fit my schedule.  It was so easy to do!  The BT.com membership is by far the best bargain in the sport of Triathlon!

  • The amount of shedding that my two pugs do is just astounding.  They each seem to shed an entire pug daily.  Wearing black clothes is in my house is very difficult because you will leave with fawn pug hair all over you.

  • My triathlon addiction has taken quite the toll on my backyard.  It is just ugly.  The porch had junk all over it and yesterday I found three huge fire ant mounds.  I poured some fire ant killer around the mounds but they are too big to probably kill so drastic action is about to be taken.  Hello fire ants, I'd like to introduce you to my friend Mr. Gasoline and his companion Mr. Match.  Yes, I am a 12 year old!

  • Is anybody else upset with the way our government has handled the Christmas underwear bomber?  I mean they let this terrorist lawyer up before they even interrogated him?  What the hell is a matter with us?  These fundamentalist crazies spend their lives trying to figure out ways to murder Americans and we treat them just like any other criminal?  If I hear another ACLU hippie tell me we are a "nation of laws" and we are "no better than the terrorists if we treat them poorly" I seriously am going to punch them in the head.  We are at war.  Wake the F up!

  • It is very hard not to root for Drew Brees and the Saints.  Especially with all that area has been through with Katrina and the ongoing recovery and how involved he has been with the efforts.  And I really do not know if I can handle a Favre VS Manning Superbowl.  The media slobbering all over themselves would be almost unbearable and could force a diehard football fan like myself to vomit in my own mouth.  If the Vikes win I will immediately remove Peter King (SI Writer) from my Twitter account because his Favre love, which is only rivaled by John Madden, would be too much to take!

  • My infatuation with Lily the Black Bear has not been quelled since the cub arrived.  I saw the cub yesterday!  It was tiny!  It started to crawl in the upper right hand of the screen and Lily reached her big paw up and pulled it back down to her.  It was pretty cool. 
I hope everyone has a great Sunday!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Week Six, Day Six: 5K Race + 25.6 Mile Ride

Oh, how I love you Foam Roller!!!!!

This morning was a 5K race (see race report below) in the morning.  This is going to make my northern readers angry but it was hot and humid for the race.  I was soaked with sweat 5 minutes into it!  I forgot how difficult breathing can be in the Houston humidity.  Luckily, it is all leaving us tonight and the upcoming week will be mid to high 60's during the day and mid to low 40's at night .... ahhhhh, winter in Southeast Texas is awesome!

After a brunch and some laundry and some fire ant mound destroying I strapped the bike to the back of the car and drove down to Huffman for my first outdoor ride of the year.  It almost didn't happen because my rack did not want to work on my new car.  A couple of weeks ago I swapped out my '07 Grand Prix with 95K on it (I drive a TON) for a new Chevy Impala.  The Impala trunk is a lot bigger than the Pontiac and my rack had to be rigged a little to make it work.  Probably going to have to get another one. Nothing is ever easy!!

I ended up doing 25.6 miles in 1:24.  That is a little over an 18.5 mph average - even with a pee break in the woods!  Last year on this same route I had trouble averaging 16mph over this distance so all the indoor trainer work this winter is paying off for me!  And the best part is that I didn't really hammer it all that hard.  I was playing with a new aero bottle and a new bike computer.  I think the main difference is that I am much more comfortable in the aero position this year and that really helps with the time.

I was going to ride for another :30 mins but it started to rain and the sky was getting dark.  All the cars had their lights on so for safety purposes I called it a day.  Better to be safe than roadkill.

To recap:  AM - 3.1 miles run in 20.48;  PM -  25.6 miles bike in 1hr 24 minutes.


Tomorrow is scheduled for a 45 minute swim.
Correction ... REST DAY ... Woot!


Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

The Run The Woodlands 5K Race Report

20:48/5th place overall

This was a cool little event.  It is sponsored by Luke's Locker of the Woodlands and is run every 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month.  I left shortly after the finish so I didn't see the final results but I am guessing maybe 50 or so people ran?

Okay, the alarm when off at 5:40 am.  I got up and let the pugs out and made a smoothie and whole wheat bagel with peanut butter.  I was on the road by 6:45 and had one heck of a time finding the race start.  It was at Barbara Bush Elementary School in the Woodlands and my GPS in the car could not locate it.  I hate it when my GPS does this?  It found the road but the Woodlands is one of those Master-Planned Communities with harsh restrictions of signs and commercial buildings so I was just driving up and down looking for something because address markers are non-existent. I'd hate to be a mail person in the Woodlands.

Anyways, I found the place at 7:48am for the 8:00am start.  It turns out that was a perfect time to get there.  I parked 30 steps from the startling line and they had a sign up sheet and a box to toss your $1 into.  My type of race - no frills, just run! 

We walked up to the starting line and since I had no idea of the route I was trying to find a guy that looks like he was a 7:00/mile runner to follow.  BINGO!  Dude with the short "V-Cut" running shorts and a pair of Newton Trainers, thats my guy.  We started out and I am following Newton guy.  It seems like I may have missed judged him because he is haulin' ass at a sub-6:00 pace.  He was in the lead position and I tried to keep up with him and another guy but they were fast!  

I ended up finishing 5th overall, so I was passed by two other runners, and my Garmin time was 20:48.  The time maybe off some because at the end I missed a turn and cut through the parking lot to the finish line.  The course wasn't mark but I should have at the least checked the map before I began to run.   But my Garmin said it was 3.12 miles so I am good with my time and happy to finish under 21 minutes. 

Now off to breakfast and then some time on my Bike!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Friday, January 22, 2010

Week Six, Day Five: 1000 Meter Swim

Thanks for the votes on the what to do on Saturday.  The overwhelming majority thinks I should HTFU and do both the 5K race and the 2 hour bike ride.  And I really liked the suggestion by fellow Tri Blogger Big Daddy Diesel:

I would do both, even if I had to drop it into granny and wuss my way thru the ride. Then you can brag about this kick arse brick session you did.
So the race is tomorrow at 8am in The Woodlands. The best part about this race is that it is done every 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month and only costs a dollar to run. I hope it is cool so I can do it again in the future.  I figure I'll be home by 9am and can have a nice big breakfast with the wife and then strap the bike to the back of the car and go to Huffman and ride this 25 mile course.  It is already downloaded onto the Garmin 305 so the prep work will be rather limited!

My PR in a 5k is 22:43 and that was back in September last year.  A lot of miles have been put on the legs since then so I am hopeful that a 21:30ish can be achieved.  Be back tomorrow with my race report.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Jeff

Lily the Black Bear is a Mommy!

Here is the link:  Lily the Black Bear

I was out in the car when it happened so I did not see it live but received a bunch of texts and calls from other Lily watchers (aka..my friends, wife, and father) keeping me up to date (yes, we are all crazy).  Supposedly over 50,000 viewers were online to watch the baby cub come into the world.

Jeff

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Week Six, Day Four: 40 Minute Swim + 1hr 19 Minute Run (8.46 Miles)


Good day today!  It started out rather suspect though.  My alarm went off at 5am.  I turned it off and got ready to get out of bed and go for my scheduled 1:15 run and the next thing I know is I look at my clock and it says 7am.  Gotta love it when that happens!

I had to go to work so no training this morning. 

But that was not going to stop me especially since I had so much energy from my extra two hours of sleep.  After work I went to the gym and got in 1500 M.  I just did 60 laps of easy swimming ..no intervals, just easy swimming and I got to try out new Aqua Sphere goggles and really liked them.

After my swim I jumped in the car and made the 10 minutes drive home.  Swimming makes me hungry so I slammed a quick pure protein bar and headed out the door.  Just me, my Garmin, my Asics, Eddie Vedder and Axl Rose - Good times had by all!

I felt great during the entire 8.46 mile run.  It was done in 1:19 which was about a 9:20ish pace.  Oh, and my new Asics are at that finally broken in perfect on your feet stage.  This usually occurs right around the 30-35 mile mark and I hit that today and the shoes are now just glorious to run in!

I put that poll up on top a little bit ago because I am unsure of how to spend my Saturday.  I found a 5k race over in The Woodlands, which is about 15-20 minutes from me at 8am.  I really want to run a 5k at a full out effort just to see what I can do.  But if I do it at a full out effort it may take enough out of me to not want to ride ... which is what is scheduled in my training plan.  Not sure what to do?  Will probably just HTFU and do both!

Tomorrow is a 45 minute swim.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Week Six, Day Three: Day of Rest + New Goggles!

Today my new swimming goggles arrived via USPS. They are the Aqua Sphere Kayenne Goggles and they look very cool. I decided to pick a pair of these up after reading a positive review at Jason's Tri-Tech Blog (Thanks Jason!).  My current goggles are a pair of $8 Speedos that have a leak in the left eye and hurt my face after about 20 minutes of wearing them.
Here are some pics of my new goggles:


Smoke Lenses Kayenne Goggles.


Look at this badass - sorry I was chewing on Almonds.

I love the way these goggles feel and can't wait to try them out.  And if I ever become a ninja I will already have the eye-wear!

My training plan had a rest day scheduled for today and I thought about going for a run.  But as my lovely wife pointed out to me, "The plan has the rest day scheduled for a reason, don't be an idiot."  So with that sound advice the plan was followed.

Tomorrow is a 1:15 run in the morning and a 45 minutes swim after work. 

BTW - For some reason I cannot wait to see this movie.  I am a sucker for post-apocalyptic supernatural action flicks and this one looks rather cool:



Thanks for Reading,

Jeff



This was fast ....

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Week Six, Day Two: BRICK!!! 1 Hour Bike + 30 Minute Run

***WARNING:  Political Rant Below, skip ahead if you only want to hear about my Brick workout!***

I try and keep this blog about fitness but sometimes I venture into other realms and recently that realm has been politics.  Like many other Americans I have been very frustrated and downright angry with our government.  These feelings have not only been directed toward Democrats, I've been just as disappointed in the GOP as well. 

When Obama was elected he promised a new way that business would be conducted inside the beltway.  He promised that his administration would offer complete and utter transparency to the American public.  He promised that he would bring together Dems and Reps and encourage open and honest debate. 

So far he has not kept a single one of these promises.  In the last year we have seen an administration that has spent more taxpayers money in one year than any of the other combined administrations have ever spent combined!  We have witnessed bribes of union leaders in backrooms.  We have witnessed huge unprecedented earmarks to senators and reps. We have witnessed a Congress that could care less about the people they represent?  Where is the transparency?  Where is the bi-partisanship? Where the hell is the "change"?

We have a Congress that does not even care what the other side thinks and are beyond glib and arrogant toward us voters  The Dems have completely excluded the Republicans from any of the Healthcare negotiations and the Republicans haven't even offered a single alternative.  Our country was founded on debate.  We have no debate.  Without debate we have Tyranny.  I saw this quote today and I thought it was really good:
Without debate, without criticism, no administration and no country can succeed -- and no republic can survive.
NO REPUBLIC CAN SURVIVE!  This is such a relevant quote and you know who said this?  John F. Kennedy.  Think about this quote and think about what is going on in our country right now.  How can our republic survive like this?

The reason I am talking about this is that Scott Brown, a Republican, just won the special election in MA for the open Senate seat that was the deceased Ted Kennedy's.  For those of you that do not follow politics MA is one of the most liberal, if not the most liberal states in our Country.  For a Republican to win this seat is a huge message to the Obama administration.  It is the American people saying that they are pissed and they have had enough.  It is MA voters remembering that quote above from JFK ... tonight was a good night for our Country!

So in the words of Johnny Drama, "VIC-TOR-YYYY!!"

Okay, time to come off the soap box  ***Ending Rant***

Damn, that just wiped me out!

Okay, so I woke up early this morning and my legs were TIRED.  Probably because I did my bike workout yesterday at 9pm - not enough time to recover.  So instead I decided I would do a bike-run brick after work.  My plan has me taking a day of rest tomorrow so I thought a brick would be appropriate.

 I got home and jumped on the bike and and rode for one hour.  I did some interval work and pushed it moderately hard.  I then slammed some water, changed into my running shorts, and put on my Asics. Stepped out the front door into the beautiful 72 degree weather and started to run.  My legs felt really good and fresh which is something that I have never experienced in previous Brick workouts.  I ended up running for 31 minutes and covered 3.53 miles.  If I wasn't so darn hungry I would have ran for a lot longer. 

The cool thing is that I did this brick and felt great afterward.  Last year if I would have done a brick like this I would have been exhausted. I am very pleased with how my training and conditioning is progressing.

Tomorrow is an off day.  I have a long day planned for work so I will more than likely adhere to my training plan and get back at it on Thursday.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Monday, January 18, 2010

Week Six, Day One: 45 Minute Swim + 45 Minute Bike

Here is a recap of Week 5:

Planned Training:
Swim - 2 hrs
Bike - 3 hrs 30 mins
Run - 2 hrs
--------------------
Total Planned - 7 hrs 30 mins

Actual Training:
Swim - 2 hrs 5 mins (5000 Meters)
Bike - 3 hrs 38 mins (62.40 Miles)
Run -  2 hrs 3 mins (13.59 Miles)
---------------------
Total Actual - 7 hrs 46 mins

Once again not a bas training week.  I was able to stick to the plan and get in all of my scheduled workouts. 

Today I did an early 45 minute/2000M swim.  My swim felt great on Friday and I thought I had a legitimate break through.  Well, today it just did not carry over.  I labored for the entire 2000 M - wu 5x50/2x750/cd 1x250.  But I was able to still get in the volume and will be better for it.

While watching Jack Bauer this evening I jumped on the QR and the indoor trainer for 45 minutes. ***24 Spoiler Upcoming - skip paragraph if haven't seen yet **** So far I am not feeling this season of 24.  Jack is awesome but the new CTU director, Freddie Prinze, and Renee Walker are all annoying me and the story line with the blonde CTU chick is just awful.  And then they bring in Russian arm dealers AND want us to believe Renee Walker was under cover six years ago with these Russian Arm Dealers .... seriously?  She looks more like a crazy ex-girlfriend than a crazy, rouge former FBI agent..  I am done. Back to regular scheduled programming ...

I gave this ride a pretty hard effort and really got the heart rate going.  Not sure what it was going to because I forgot my HR strap but I was working hard.  I really enjoy riding my trainer, but am going to try and get an outdoor ride in this weekend!  Our weather has turned and the last two days have been in the low 60's and this weekend is supposed to be in the low 70's so I am excited to bike and run outside.

Tomorrow is a 30 minute run and another 1 hour bike and the MA special election.  Very excited to see the results of this sucker.  Hopefully, the MA voters will voice the anger of the nation and vote for Scott Brown!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Week Five, Day Seven: 2 Hours on the Trainer + "Inglorious Basterds"


Jumped on the trainer for a nice little 2 hour ride.  Boy, it was tough!  It was a VERY long sit in that saddle.  Luckily, I had on the DAL vs MIN game.  Which was a pretty crappy game unless you were a Vikings fan.

Anyways the first hour or so wasn't too bad.  By the second hour my butt started to get pretty sore.  I am using the OEM saddle on my Quitana Roo and really need to get a more comfy one.  Especially as my rides keep getting longer.


After the ride I took a quick shower, ate a sandwich and had a whey protein recovery drink.  Then I sat down to watch the Quentin Tarantino flick "Inglorious Basterds".  This movie has received a bunch of award nominations and has been critically acclaimed so I was excited to sit down and watch!

Now this movie started off very uncomfortable. A Nazi named Hans Landu (played brilliantly by Christoph Waltz) better known as the "Jew Hunter" interrogating a man and his family who were hiding Jews at their farm house in rural France during the German occupation of WWII.  This was probably my favorite scene in the entire movie!  Then from there we meet the "Basterds" who are a bunch of Jewish American soldiers, led by Brad Pitt, dropped into France with one goal - to Kill Nazis. 

The "Basterds" succeed with their one goal numerous times in the movie and in typical Tarantino fashion they succeed rather violently!  The movie is very entertaining and at times funny.  Brad Pitt's character is over the top but in a good way.  He is the leader of a bunch of cold blooded Nazi killers and in order for this crew to be believable then the leader needs to be a bit "off".  The individual performances were very good but the movie itself missed as a whole.  The story was historically inaccurate and as my buddy Mike pointed out the ending would have been better if the historical revisionist part was left out.  As not to ruin it for you I will not go into detail about the ending but it was a big FAIL in my opinion. 

Overall, I would give it a 7/10.  It was an entertaining movie but was not deserving of the praise it has received. 

Today is a 45 minute ride and then a 45 minute swim after work.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sunday Morning Ramblings

It is time for my 2 hour ride on the trainer so instead of doing that right now I figured that procrastination is a much better alternative:
  • I am captivated by the race for the open Senate seat in MA and the upcoming Tuesday special election to determine the winner.  As we all know MA is about as "blue" as a state can be in this country and for this reason the DNC pretty much assumed that Democrat Martha Coakley would easily win the election and take over Ted Kennedy's seat. Not so fast - enter Scott Brown.  Brown is the Republican candidate who has come out of nowhere to be the leader in the latest polling results.  The reason this is so interesting is that this election could determine the outcome of the Government run healthcare bill that is being negotiated between Reid and Pelosi right now.  Brown claims he will vote against it, Coakley claims she will vote for it.  The GOP is happy right now no matter the outcome because if an extremely liberal state like MA (home of Barney Frank) is giving a Republican candidate a chance it is really showing the temperature of the country right now and that temperature is HOT!  Anger with reckless government spending, anger with government run healthcare, anger with the utter arrogance and elite attitude of the career politicians in congress.  2010 could be shaping up for the real year of  "Change".

  • My father sent me this link yesterday: Black Bear Den Cam   I am now captivated  by this and I have no idea why?  It is a live feed of a Black Bear named Lily in her den hibernating for the winter.  The bear is supposedly pregnant and ready to give birth to little baby cubs any day now.  I have checked this cam probably five times since last night and the bear is pretty much just sleeping. 

  • Being a native Pittsburgher and a huge Steelers fan it was very satisfying to watch the Colts smack the Ravens in the mouth and knock them out of the playoffs.  And Ravens fan - Joe Flacco is not Big Ben so quite making those comparisons.

  • Last night Annie and I watched, "The Hurt Locker".  I am not sure how I felt about this movie?  I did not love it but did not hate it either.  The actors were very good in their roles and the directing was captivating and realistic. It gave you a lot to think about but overall is was rather forgettable as a whole.   Believe it or not the realism angle of the film hurt the story, IMO.  Or more accurately the lack of a story.  The plot was all over the place because their really wasn't one.  It was pretty much just the perspective of the three member bomb squad and the struggles each had with the job that could kill any of them at any time.  The tension in the film was palpable and kudos to the director for pulling this off.  The real problem for me was that we didn't have enough back story about the 3 main characters to have any connection with them.  They tried to pull this together toward the end but it was a little too late.  Conversation between Annie and I during the movie:  Annie: "Is this movie ever going to end?"  Jeff: "um, the DVD player says it has only been on for 1:38"  Annie:  "What are you doing?"  Jeff: "Checking my email."

  • The earthquake in Haiti was/is a horrible tragedy and my heart goes out to all those affected.  However, the 24/7 coverage by the cable news channels is completely over the top right now.  They all are already running promos on how they were, "There first in Haiti!!!" and blah, blah, blah.  Why not get the hell out of the way and let the rescue and relief efforts take place without you getting in the way asking a million questions?

  • Tonight Jack Bauer is going to be welcomed back in to our lives with open arms.  I am downright giddy to watch Jack kick the crap out of some "bad guys".
Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Week Five, Day Six: 23 Minute Tempo Run

Why only 23 minutes you ask? 

My wife Annie and I set out for a nice little afternoon run.  She was planning on doing 5 miles per her Hal Higdon Marathon training and I was going to tick off the 30 minutes called for on my BT 1/2 Ironman plan.  My run was a tempo run today so I started off at a much quicker pace then her.  Since the run was a short one I headed off on the sidewalk of the main road of the neighborhood.  It is .75 mile down and .75 back.  Then I head into another section and run all the cul-de-sacs and start to head back towards the house. 

Well, as I was headed back I see Annie walking with a limp.  After yesterdays run she said she was having a little pain on the inside of her left knee about midway up on the knee.  She iced and took some advil and said it was feeling much better today so she wanted to try and run.  About a mile in the pain came back and she decided to hobble on home.

When I saw her I was right at 2.9 miles and instead of continuing on for a few minutes I decided go walk back with her.  So I sprinted over to her ending my run at exactly 23 minutes and 3.0 miles which is about a 7:40ish pace.  I had some work to do so I left the house and she spent the day on RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevate) duty.  On my way back I stopped at the Academy Sporting Goods and found a Nike Knee Compression Sleeve for her.  She has it on now and says it feels pretty good.  Her marathon is on Feb 14th so we are hopeful this is just a minor tweak and she can be back training in a few days.  It would be very disappointing for her to have to miss the race after all these hard months of training.

We are watching BAL vs Colts right now and are going to watch, "The Hurt Locker" on DVD as soon as this game is decided.  I am excited to see this movie.  Some of my friends have said it is awesome. 

I'll have a full movie review tomorrow:


Tomorrow is a 2hr ride on the indoor trainer!!!!  Picked up "Inglorious Basterds" to watch then!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Friday, January 15, 2010

Week Five, Day Six: 40 Minute Swim (1500 Meters)


This is not a picture of the pool at my gym - not even close really. However, this picture is an accurate representation of the amount of swimmers usually at the pool.  Yes, I am the only person who ever uses it.  When I hand the girl at the front desk my swip card she always asks me if I am going to "my pool?"  She thinks she if funny and is pretty correct.  Aside from the crazy old dude that does the water running thing and calls me, "Young Buck" I am usually the only person there. 

So today when another guy got in the lane next to me and started swimming laps I was kinda shocked!  I mean what the hell was this dude doing in my pool?  Then after another lap or so I noticed he was trying to race me.  Now I am a slow swimmer, but as a type-A competitive asshole I could not pretend this was not happening.  So the next lap when he was hanging at the wall waiting for me I did my turn and hammered it.  It was Go Time! He knew what was going on but he couldn't keep up.  I beat him by 3 or 4 lengths and turned and hammered it back. I slowed after that and continued my workout and noticed the other guy was already done.  He did maybe 200 meters and called it a day? It was at this point I realized my victory was rather hollow because this guy was not a swimmer AND maybe he wasn't waiting for me to race but rather hanging at the wall because he was winded.  Whatever, I smoked him!

Tomorrow is supposed to be my off day but since work and travel got in the way on Tuesday and I missed a 30 minute run I am going to make it up in the morning. 

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Week Five, Day Four: 1 Hour Run + 40 Minute Swim


Got up this morning and it pretty much looked like this outside.  But the good thing is neither Annie nor I actually looked outside before we changed into our running gear. And by the time we realized it was raining we were on the front porch.  Too late to turn around! 

The run was done very easy, just like my training plan recommended.  It rained the entire run, except for the last 2 minutes.  I was completely soaked to the bone but still enjoyed the hour run.  Ended up at my front porch again right at the 1:00 mark ... I love it when I end up at my finishing point right when I am supposed to!  Total run was 6.09 miles. 

After an afternoon conference call I headed to the gym for a swim.  I ended up doing 1500 meters in about 40 minutes.  No drills today just 2x750 with a couple of minute pee break in-between.  Yes, I got out of the pool (-:

My swimming is becoming a lot more effortless but I am still slow.  Tomorrow I am going to hammer some more drills and continue to just keep getting more comfortable in the water.

Tomorrow is a 30 minute swim.  If I am not feeling too beat down I might get in another short run.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Week Five, Day Three: 45 Minutes Swim + 40 Minutes Run (4.5 Mi)

First off the Official Results are in for the USA Fit Half Marathon (click to see) we did on Sunday. 

Annie - Overall 111/841 - Age Group 10/184 - 2:01:26
Jeff - Overall 78/841 - Age Group 21/64 - 1:56:33

We both had a lot of fun and are looking to improve at Austin on Feb 14th!

As for today's workouts I ended up having a solid one.  First I hit the pool and got in 2000M of aquatics fun.  Started out doing 1000M around an RPE 4-5.  Then I did 250M of drills.  Followed by 500M of easy laps (RPE 2-3) focusing on form and then a cool down of 250M.  The water was freaking cold in the pool again.  They must be having trouble with the heater again.  I couldn't find the manager to complain and I was in a hurry to get out of there so hopefully they will have it fixed.

This evening I was schedule to do an easy 30 minute run.  The temperature was an absolutely glorious 62 degrees which meant I could run in shorts!  I still put on a long sleeve DriFit shirt but it was so nice to run in shorts again.  I put on the iPod and took off through the neighborhood and ended up in one of those "zones" or "trances" thinking about work and training.  Next thing I know I am on the other side of the neighborhood and my Garmin tells me I am already at 30 minutes.  So, I figured just keep going and ended up doing 4.5 miles in 40 minutes.  That is a pace just under 9 minutes per mile.  Which is perfect for an easy run!

Tomorrow is an early morning one hour run and then after work a half hour at the pool.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Week Five, Day Two: 1 Hour on the Trainer

Not much to report today.  Ate a ton.  Ate clean. Lots of water.  Stopped at 3 different gas stations to pee. I should create a map for outside sales reps that shows all the good spots to pee in and around Houston.  hmmmm.....

Today was supposed to be a double day with a 30 minute swim and an hour bike.  I had a busy work day and could only get in the trainer time.  I will just move the schedule around a little and do the swim on Saturday.

I can feel myself getting stronger on the bike each ride.  I started off today with an easy 10 minute warm-up and then switched to the big ring for the next 20 minutes.  Then repeated the sequence again.

Well off to bed -  up at 5am tomorrow for 30 minute recovery run!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Monday, January 11, 2010

Week Five, Day One: 30 Minutes Trainer - Week 4 Recap

Here are my training log totals for Week 4:

Planned Training:
Swim - 1 hour 40 minutes
Bike - 3 hours 15 minutes
Run -  2 hours 25 minutes
-------------------------------------
Planned Totals  -  7 hours 20 minutes

Actual Training:
Swim - 1 hour 20 minutes (2500 Meters)
Bike - 5 hours 15 minutes (53.50 Miles)
Run -  3 hours 8 minutes (20.86 Miles)
-----------------------------------------
Actual Totals  -  9 hours 43 minutes (74.36 Miles & 2500 M)

As you can see I had a very good training week.  It helped having the extra mileage from the 1/2 Mary yesterday. 

I am feeling good about my decision to not push it to hard in the race yesterday.  My legs were feeling a little sore this morning when I woke up but after a coffee and 15 minutes with the Foam Roller all was good again in my own universe.  What is a Foam Roller you ask?



The Foam Roller is a device straight from hell!  It hurts to use and I mean it hurts bad.  But as soon as you are finished you stand up and your legs feel just awesome.  I don't use the foam roller that often but really need to do it more. Because of the foam roller I was able to get a strong trainer workout in this evening.

As for the trainer I did 38 minutes and according to the wireless Schwinn computer placed on the rear wheel of my Quintana Roo that was 11.40 miles.  Not sure how accurate this is since it doesn't give you an accurate readout since wind and tension is not included.  But it does count the number of times the wheel rotated so it at least gives me a baseline.  Today was supposed t be a swim day but I really wanted to loosen up and the bike always helps.  I am not going to miss a day of training so I just swapped today with Thursday's scheduled bike and put the swim there.  Easy enough!

Tomorrow is another double workout day.  AM will be 1 hour on the trainer, again - just me, my bike and Fox News.   PM will be 30 minutes of laps at the pool after work.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Week Four, Day Seven: USA Fit Half Marathon Race Report

Here are the stats from my Garmin:

13.18 miles
1:55:05
Avg Pace 8:43/mi
1610 calories
155 avg HR
Mile 1 pace - 9:28/mi
Mile 12 pace - 8:01/mi

The official times have not been posted yet so we will go by my Garmin until that happens.  As many of you know I was going to treat this race as an easy training run and try to fight off the syndrome of meat-headedness that I am a frequent sufferer from.  Well, I did a pretty good job of this.  I stuck with Annie for the first 7+ miles or so and then some mini-meat-headedness struck me.  After this moment I started to run a little harder and considered pushing to a 7:30ish pace.  But I backed off to an 8:00-8:15/mi pace and my legs are happy I did!  Below is the Race Report that I posted on BeginnerTriathlete.com and below that is some pics from the event.

RACE REPORT:

Pre-race routine:


This was my wife Annie's first race over 5 miles. She is training for the Austin Marathon in Feb and we thought this would be a good race to try to help prepare. I agreed to try and pace her for most of the run and fight my normal meathead urge to race. We stayed at the Town Center Marriott and had a nice dinner the night before at a Japanese place right across the street.

For breakfast we each had a banana, some coffee, and a zone bar to get something in out bellies! And then headed out to the frigid morning.


Event warmup:

None. It was 25 degrees and absolutely freezing. My best split of the day was my run from the car to the timing chip booth and then back to the car! After a prolonged wait at the porta potty line we barely made it to the starting line to hear the gun.


Run Comments:

We started out at the back of the pack. As we were jogging to the start line we heard the gun go off - not very well planned by us! It probably took 2-3 minutes for us to get to the timing mat. My guess is that about 1700-1800 people were participating.

We zigged and zagged and after 2 miles found some open road and it was a nice easy run from here. Around mile 3 Annie was struggling with her breathing due to the cold weather. Us Texans are not used to sub-30 degrees - don't laugh you Yankees because we would smoke you in 90 degrees with 80% humidity (-:

She started to feel better and get control of it when the sunny came up shortly after. At mile 6 I had to find a porta potty and unload some Gatorade. I told Annie to just keep running and I would catch up. This gave me a chance to stretch my legs a bit and it felt really good. I caught up to her right before mile 7.

At mile 7 I was still feeling really good and told Annie I wanted to run a little harder, she agreed and I upped my pace to 8-8:15/mi right around the 8 mile mark. At this point I passed a ton of people and bumped into a couple of guys I did the Texas Trail run 50k with. They were doing the full marathon. We talked for a few minutes and then I took off again.  I thought about pushing to a 7:30/mi pace for the last three miles but decided against it as to not tire my legs out too much for my upcoming training week and figured a couple of minutes off my finish time was not worth the recovery - meathead moment avoided!

According to the Garmin my finish time was 1:55:05. I had forgot to turn the auto-pause off and it probably paused when I made the bathroom pit stop so it might be a minute or two off.

Annie found a second wind and finished really strong at 2:02:33. She had a big smile on her face crossing the finish line and I was really proud of her. She did awesome and is ready for the Austin Marathon.

What would you do differently?:

Nothing really, except get our pansy butts out of the heated car sooner and get to the starting line in time. But it was sooo warm in the car!

Post race Warm down:

Got our finishers medal and long sleeve tech tee and headed back to the hotel for a warm shower and an awesome brunch. We chowed at the brunch!!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Nothing.

Event comments:

Overall the race was good for it only being in it's 2nd year of existence. They had an awesome group of volunteers and the police were everywhere controlling traffic. The hotel we stayed at was the "Host Hotel" and we paid a couple extra bucks to stay because we thought a shuttle was available and a pre-race breakfast. Well, the shuttle didn't provide service to the race and the breakfast didn't open until 7am which was the start time of the race. Would have stayed at a cheaper hotel otherwise. But still had a great time!


Annie and I pre-race in our base layers - not sure if we are going to run or heist some jewelry!


This is after the race with our finishers medals.  It may look sunny but it was freezing!
 

Here is a close up of the finishers medal - it was a nice touch by the race organizers.


Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Week Four, Day Six: Rest Day


Friday, January 8, 2010

Week Four, Day Five: 45 minutes on the Trainer

Spent 45 minutes on the trainer this evening while watching District 9.   The time on the trainer was made so much more bearable because the movie was awesome!  I had a couple of friends tell me to watch this one so I stopped by the Red Box on the way home from work.  It was completely different from what I thought it was going to be which made it even better.  I don't want to give the plot away (which was one of the most original I have seen in years)  so I will just say it was much better than I thought it would be and I hope a sequel is in the works!

Anyways, Annie and I are running in the USA Fit Half Marathon on Sunday.  We are going to stay at the Town Center Marriott (yeah Marriott points!) in Sugarland tomorrow night - it is right by the starting line which is important because it is going to be freezing on Sunday morning.  The temperature is going to be between 18-22 degrees at the 7:00 am starting time.  That is an extremely cold morning for us Houstonians!  With the Hotel being right next to the start line we can stay in the warm room until right before the gun.

So, I went out and got my hands on some cold weather gear today.  First, I already have Under Armor Heat Gear Running Tights.  They are pretty gay looking but have been so nice to wear during this cold snap.  Today I picked up a Nike Pro Thermal Mock Neck - this maybe the most comfortable shirt I have ever worn.  Got one for both Annie and myself - we are going to be that annoying wardrobe coordinated couple -puke.  This base layer it is going to be very warm, yet not bulky at all.  I also picked up a new pair of Asics 2140's and they were on sale for half off.  I love the last year model sales!  For the race I have a Nike knit hat and some gloves and will put a tech tee over the mock neck.  I hope this is enough!

As for my race strategy, the plan is to treat it as a training day.  I am going to run at a nice easy pace and try not to push it.  My legs are still not a 100% healthy and with my Tri training I have been putting on a lot of miles.  With that in mind and the fact that if I run hard I will lose a few days of training to recovery - this is probably the smart approach to take.  It should be fun to see if I can actually stick to this plan and hold back the competitive idiot that is me.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Week Four, Day Four: 2 hours on Trainer

Not a very eventful day.  I rode the bike for 2 hours in the morning and watched, "The International".  It was a Thriller about a multinational bank that will do anything to protect it's interests.  In the end I am not sure which was more brutal - 2 hours on the trainer or Clive Owens' acting?  It wasn't all Clive Owens fault, the plot was just overtly stupid, but yet tried to pass itself off as intelligent.  I probably would have turned it off 30 minutes in but I dropped the DirecTV remote on the carpet and didn't want to stop and get off the bike.  Do not waste your time with this crappy movie.

In the evening I went do a bar/restaurant with some buddies to watch the Texas vs Alabama game.  I was absolutely starving and this place has nothing but junk on the menu.  So when in Rome .....  I had 4 sliders for an appetizer, a Chicken sandwich with fries for the dinner, and then about 5-6 buffalo wings leftover from one of my buddies.  I only had maybe 4 beers the entire night and had at least two glasses of water in between each beer.  I really do not like eating junk like this.  I am not worried that I am going to gain weight or anything because of how rare I eat poorly but I just hate the way I feel the next day.  I have been sluggish since I woke up.  Food is my fuel, got to eat the high octane stuff

Getting ready to jump on the trainer for 45 minutes or so and watch District 9!  Be back later with a recap and tell you about some new gear purchases made this morning!  Oh, BTW, we are doing a 1/2 Marathon on Sunday morning!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Week Four, Day Three: 40 min Swim + 30 min Run + Triathlete Observations

Another good, solid training day.  My knees, legs and joints are feeling so much better.  It might be from the glucosamine, fish oil, and addition protein, it might be that I finally have healed up?  Whatever it is I am going to just keep doing what I am doing!  Okay, I did a swim of about 1500 meters today.  I only did about 150 meters of drills from The Essential Triathlon Swimming DVD and then the rest was just pure lap tempo swimming.  Then around 7pm I did a 30 minute run in my neighborhood.  The temp was about 47 degrees and made for some comfortable running.  I ended up doing 3.46 miles in 33 minutes.

When I run at night I leave the iPod at home for safety reasons.  So that means I have a lot of time to think and I started reflecting on how my life has changed since I have became a triathlete.  Here are some of my thoughts:


  • I am constantly hungry.  Back in my P90X days I used to struggle to eat the recommended 3000 calories a day.  Now I sometimes have that knocked out by lunch!  Seriously, this is what I ate today: AM - Protein Shake, whole wheat bagel w/ Peanut Butter, coffee, handful of almonds; AM Snack - Muscle Milk, Two handfuls of Almonds, Peanut Butter Zone Bar, Banana; Lunch - 12' Turkey Sub from Subway, Apples, Pure Protein Bar; PM Snack - two handfuls of Almonds, Cookies N Cream Balance Bar, Muscle Milk Light (after Swim); 2nd PM Snack - Banana and 2 teaspoons of Peanut Butter; Dinner - 2 grilled Turkey Burgers on whole wheat buns with veggies, two handfuls of almonds!!!  --- Now I don't even bother to figure out calories anymore but it is a lot.  The good news is that aside from all the calories it is still a pretty darn clean diet!

  • I am a fitness snob.  Yes, I am pretty annoying.  I correct fitness experts on TV (talking to you Jillian).  When people ask me for fitness/nutrition advice I probably raise my nose up in the air before I respond.  At the gym last week one of the personal trainers was asking me about my workouts (it is her job to do this, I should respect the sales attempt).  I didn't hear a single word she said to me because she was in what I now consider not very good shape - had a little jiggle.  All I could think was she is from the school of "Do as I say, not as I do!".  I am not proud of this new trait, but unlike our current administration, I believe in full transparency (talking to you Obama)!

  • My shoe collection is beginning to rival my wife's! Well, that is not true. Most shoe stores cannot rival her shoe collection!  But, as a dude I always have like 4 pair of shoes: Black dress shoes, brown dress shoes, sneakers, casual non-sneakers.  Now I have running shoes, trail running shoes, bike shoes, long run shoes, short run shoes, old short run shoes that I might use again someday, shoes I wear to the gym, flip flops for the gym, flip flops for race day ...etc.  Just ridiculous.

  • I am very skinny.  Back when I was doing P90X and dropped a bunch of weight and got all ripped everyone was always telling me how great I look.  Now everyone is telling me I need to gain weight or that I am wasting away.  Here is the thing, I am a triathlete now and the less I weigh the faster I am!  With each pound I lose my running becomes better.  Now I am not trying to lose anymore weight but my body does what my body does.  Pretty sure my friends will soon be having an Intervention for me!

  • Clothes no longer fit right?  My waist is 30" right now.  I cannot wear 30" pants because the pants are too tight in the legs because of the size of my thighs and calves.  Example:  I go to buy jeans last week.  I cannot get the 30x30 jeans over my thighs, they are just too tight.  I have to buy 33x30 jeans and wear a belt to hold them up.  As I was trying the 30x30 jeans on I had to call Annie into the dressing room to help me pull them off of my legs because they were that tight.  She laughed for like 20 minutes.  Bottom line is I have the lower body of The Hulk and the upper body of David Spade!  Very disproportionate.

  • I have become a sentimental pansy.  If you were to ask my close friends and family to describe me  the word "sensitive" would not be one of the words mentioned.  I am normally very analytical and rarely make decisions based on emotion.  But ever since I have got into Triathlon I have found myself being inspired damn near ever day.  The triathlon community has so many people that have overcome so many impossible things and I truly enjoy being part of it.  They are a group of people who (for the most part) check their egos at the door and will bend over backwards to help one another out.  I have watched the Kona video like three times now and will admit that it has got to me all three times.  When I started this blog back in 2008 I did it as a tool to hold myself accountable.  I told all my friends and family I was doing P90X and to check my blog each day.  This made me not miss workouts and not make excuses.  Well, I don't really need the accountability anymore.  I will do my workouts with or without this blog - it is now a lifestyle.  But I think the real reason I do this now is because every now and again someone comments and says that I am inspiring them.  That makes me feel really good and if I can just help a few people to change their lives by taking 15 minutes a night and posting my training than that is what I will do.  So thank you triathlon community for inspiring me to continue to post and continue to train!
Tomorrow is 2 hours on the indoor bike trainer.  I have a few movies DVR'd so I might have a movie review as well tomorrow!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Week Four, Day Two: 40 min Run + 40 min Swim

Good day today!

My knees are feeling much better.  Still some soreness but not pain.  This is a much more manageable scenario!

This morning I did a 4.30 mile run in 40 minutes.  I tried to keep it nice and easy in the RPE 2-3 zone like my training plan suggested.  It was really cold out but after about 10 minutes or so I warmed up and got a nice run in. 

In the evening I went to the gym to hit the pool.  The gym was crowded with all the resolutionists but the pool was empty!  I worked on a bunch of drills from The Essential Triathlon Swimming DVD and then did a quick 400 yards of laps to re-enforce the drills.  I am still pretty slow with my freestyle stroke but am getting much more comfortable in the water.  Swimming does not feel as hard as it did a couple of weeks ago and I think the drills from the DVD are really helping. 

Today is another double day.  My run is scheduled for 40 minutes and the swim is scheduled for 30 minutes.  I will probably do the run right after work and then eat some dinner and go swim later.  I was going to run this morning but it is freezing cold out and I am a huge wimp!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Monday, January 4, 2010

Week Four, Day One: 40 min Run + 40 min Swim 30 min Trainer

Today is the start of the 4th week of my 1/2 IM Training program.  I was supposed to do a 40 minute swim and a 40 minute run.  Last night when I went to sleep with a bag of ice on my left knee I knew the run was not going to happen!  When I woke up today and both my knees were throbbing I didn't think anything was going to happen.  Well, I got home from work about 4pm and my Quintana Roo was sitting on the indoor trainer looking at me all sad from being ignored and I had to give it a try!




So, I tossed on the lycra shorts with a huge pad in the crotch and jumped on the bike.  My first goal was to just get some training in.  My second goal was to hopefully loosen up my knees some. Both were accomplished because I rode for an easy 30 minutes.  It was only 8 miles (16mph avg) but my legs immediately felt better.  I took a quick shower and then sat down on the couch and iced the knees again.  I am going to try to both run and swim tomorrow.

Over the last week when I was sick I was doing some reading up on vitamins to take for joint soreness and have since started taking Glucosamine.  Supposedly Glucosamine helps with strengthening cartilage and lubricating joints, in particular the knees.  So, I figure why not give it a try?  I have also started taking Fish Oil.  Fish Oil is loaded with Omega-3 Fatty Acids which has compelling evidence in favor of preventing cardiovascular disease.  Another benefit is that Fish Oil helps reduce inflammation in muscles and bone ... aka - arthritis!  Well, I have a bunch on inflammation going on in my legs and with all the broken bones I have had the Fish Oil seems like something I should not be lacking!

Sidebar ....
I am watching "Field of Dreams" right now.  This is one of my favorite sports movies of all time (Disclosure: I am a HUGE baseball fan and stat geek). Anytime I come across it randomly being aired I have to watch even though I own the DVD.  I have probably seen this movie 50 times and yet still enjoy every viewing.  The scene at the end when Ray (Kevin Costner) and his father, "Hey Da...ad,  wanna have a catch .." just gets me every single time.  That scene combined with the mysticism and history of baseball makes, in my opinion, just a perfect film.
..... End Sidebar.


Tomorrow is a 40 minute run and a 40 minute swim.

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Week Three, Day Seven: 11.75 Mile Run

Okay, back on the saddle again!  Except I wasn't really on my bike saddle.  More like back on the Asics again ... that does not sound as good.  Oh well ... I ran today!

I was healthy enough to get in a nice long run with Annie.  According to my training plan I was scheduled to do a 1.5 hour Bike ride.  But since I have not followed the plan due to being sick for the last five days I decided to get the heck out of the house and go running.  Annie was scheduled to do 15 miles today and she did them all. She is just a marathon training machine right now.  We ran by the car at 11.75 miles and I decided to stop right there.  Both of my knees were barking and I didn't want to risk hurting myself anymore so I reluctantly stopped.  My overall energy was still very good and I could have completed the 15 miles if it were not for my knees.  The fact is that I did some pretty good damage to my legs, knees in particular, when I ran the 50k trail race.  The last 5 miles of that race did a number on me and it is taking a lot of time to heal.   They are getting better each day that passes and I need to keep running until things are back to normal.

We had the car parked at a Walgreens and I jumped in and turned on the heat because it was freezing outside.  It felt so good to warm up.  Then I drove over to Subway and picked us up some turkey subs and then went back to get Annie.  I also picked up a bag of ice. Why ice you ask?  Because I dumped it into my tub and took an ice bath.  Ice baths are absolutely brutal.  They hurt like hell but man do they ever work!  My knees started to feel better almost instantly.  I have been icing intermittently throughout the day and am icing  again right now.  Hopefully this will help me to be able to run tomorrow.

Tomorrow is a 40 minute swim and a 40 minute run.  I am going to do the swim in the afternoon and the run in the late evening to give myself some more time to recover from today.  I am looking forward to killing it this week since I am finally over being sick!

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

p.s. - I am not ready to talk about football yet.  Freaking Steelers.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Goodbye 2009 ... Hello 2010

I just started thinking about what a good year 2009 was and how much I am looking forward to 2010!

Some interesting events, in no particular order:

- Finished my 2nd round of P90X.
- Hurt my left shoulder - thanks to P90X.
- Officially reached my mid-30's.
- Started Running, Swimming and Biking.
- Competed in my 1st Triathlon.
- Competed in my 2nd Triathlon.
- Competed in my 1st 5mile Race.
- Competed in my 1st 10K Race.
- Competed in my 1st 50K Race and got worst blister ever!
- Bought a Road Bike.
- Sold a Road Bike.
- Bought a Triathlon Bike.
- Totaled 304 Posts to this Blog!?!
- Went to Pamplona Spain - Ran with the Bulls!

This blog has made it fun to look back on the year. I still can't believe I was dumb enough to Run with the Bulls?  And I still can't believe how damn bad the 50k hurt - the hardest thing I have ever physically had to do without a doubt!

Now 2010 looks like a lot of fun:

- January 1/2 Marathon.
- Feb 1/2 Marathon.
- A 1/2 Ironman Training Program.
- April Olympic Triathlon with an Ocean swim.
- Repeat of the 2 Sprint Triathlons I did last year.
- November 1/2 Half Ironman.
- December 50K Trail Run (Yes, I am not right in the head).
- Also plan to mix in a bunch of 5k and 10k races on open weekends.

Jeff

Week Three, Day Three, Four, Five & Six: Still Sick

I haven't posted in a couple of days and it is because I am still under the weather.  I am feeling much better tonight so I am going to try and go run with Annie tomorrow morning.  She is scheduled to do 15 miles for her training. I am going to just do as much as I can and not try to over do it.

Last night Annie and I went to see Avatar at the IMAX.  This movie has been so hyped that I figured in no way would it be able to measure up.  Well, I was completely wrong - Avatar was incredible! It actaully exceeded the hype.  Now the plot isn't going to win any oscars but everything else about the film should.  This movie is as groundbreaking as films such as Star Wars, The Matrix and the LOTR trilogy.  If you haven't seen it do youself a favor and go find an IMAX or Extreme Digital theater and take the entire family!

I am looking at my bike on the trainer right now and am thinking about jumping on for a spin.  Should probably just rest up for tomorrow's run? 

Anyways, I cannot wait to jump back into this full throttle.  I took some measurement today:  My body weight is 149 lbs.  When I started P90X last August I weighted 190+lbs.  My Body Fat is 11% right now.  I really do not want to lose anymore weight but the lighter I get my running becomes better. 

Thanks for Reading,

Jeff

Friday, January 1, 2010