- Ironman Texas is almost here. I am not racing this year but am volunteering as a bike catcher at T2 from 11:30-5:00pm. If you are going to be there come over and say hi. We have 16 athletes from my Tri Club racing and a group of us spent last Sunday afternoon making signs to place along the course for them - we also may have made a sign or two for a certain Vegan from Dallas! I think I am more excited about volunteering then when actually racing last year.
- I raced in the Kemah Olympic Tri on April 30th. I wanted to put up a race report but have been extremely busy so will have to just give a little blurb here. My buddy Dave and I stayed at a hotel close to the race and when we walked outside at 4:30am and saw the wind already had big Texas flags blowing straight that it was going to be a tough race. And to make matters worse, at 4:30am it was around 78* with 97% humidity. Our Spring had been really nice and we have had little humidity until this weekend!
- The Swim: We got on the cool ass boat and relaxed for the 45min trip 1 mile out into the bay. Last year it took them 40mins to get about 750 people off the boat. The boat drifted and made the swim very long. This year they had a plan to get nearly 800 people off the boat in under 10 minutes. It was a time trial start for the Age Groupers and the way it worked was we walked over the timing strip and then made the 5ft jump into the water. Dave said it was like when he was in the Army jumping off of planes. This drill Sargent-like chick was at the front screaming out commands and we all jumped. Total time to unload was around 7 minutes. We jumped into the water and immediately found ourselves wrapped up in some pretty big waves. It was the hardest swim I have ever had to do. Never have I been in rough water like this before and I have to admit, most will disagree, it was pretty awesome. The waves and current kept pushing you left of the buoys and I spent as much energy trying to stay on course as I did trying to swim forward. Lots of contact as people were being pushed left and fighting to swim right. I actually swam right over top of a few peeps. No sharks seen! Extremely slow swim times for the field but I actually finished in an okay position. Time - 30:58, 30/80 AG
- The Bike: I had an extremely fast transition (37 Overall) as I had my shoes clipped in and rubber banded. We made a right heading north out of transition and spun around under the Kemah Bridge (more on the bridge later) and headed right into the 25-30mph South winds. It sucked as the wind was steady to gusting the entire way. The swim had me pretty tired so I spun for a couple of miles and was actually passing a lot of people. After my bike legs were found I tried to make myself as small as possible and just work hard until the turn around. I saw my buddy Dave mounting his bike just in front of me and my plan was to catch him so we could work together in the wind. Drafting can be done legally (3 bikes apart) and Dave and I ride together enough that it would have taken a head node for him to understand. I am fighting to catch him and see a pack of riders ahead and notice a guy in a black tri suit and a green bike (QR cd0.1) pull off to the side of the road. It was Dave and he flatted. Shit. New plan - Just keep small and ride hard. I hit the 12.5mi mark and my average speed was 17.5mph and the crazy part was I passed a ton of people. It was not a straight out and back as there was a little section where we had a strong crosswind but at about mile 16 I had the wind at my back and it was time to hammer. My Garmin split for mile 7 showed a 16.9 avg. For mile 20 (same section of road) it showed a 31.5mph avg! It was crazy, I averaged over 30mph of the last 7mi of the course. There was a sprint race as well and they merged onto the Oly course around mile 21 and I was passing them like they were sitting still. Anyway, tough bike with the crazy wind. Garmin time had me at a 21.2mph average and the timing mats (which were in the transition area) had me at a 20.6mph average. Time - 1:14:07, 19/80 AG
- The Run: After another fast transition (55 Overall) I hit the run course feeling pretty good. I only carried one bottle on my bike (torpedo mount) and it was not enough. I did not account for the humidity and was literally pouring sweat on the ride. I grabbed some Gatorade from the aide station right outside of transition but I knew it was going to be hard to catch up. The first 3mi went pretty well. I was on pace to finish the 10k around 42-43 minutes but knew I still had the Kemah Bridge to run up, turn around, and run up again. This was going to slow me down a little but I figured I could sprint the last mile, which was flat, and make up the time. This did not go as planned. The heat and humidity took its toll as I started to ascent the bridge. It hurt and my pace slowed. Running up the bridge the second time kicked my ass and I had no kick left. I just cruised on in and called it a day. Time - 47:28, 7:39/mi, 15/80 AG
- Summary: Great race by a great race promotion company - OnUrMark. These guys are putting on races in the Houston area that rival the best in the country. First class. Overall I was pleased with my performance. The conditions probably added a good 10mins to my time but I like hard days and hard courses. This could be a very fast course if the wind, heat, and surf would cooperate but that was not the case on this day. Time - 2:36:16, 15/80 AG, 75/750ish OA
- Why is it that when you are leaving the gym and need to get to your locker someone is always at the locker above/next to yours? You can be the only two people in the entire locker room and this will happens. FU Murphy's Law. F.U.
- I am a Pittsburgh Pirates Fan. I have been a fan for as long as I can remember. Every year I follow this team and think this will be the year they finally get over the hump and have a winning season. They have not had a winning season in 19 years. It really sucks. Anyway, I saw a stat today that shows just how pathetic they are right now. In all of Professional Baseball there are a total of 150 teams (minors & majors). The Pirates so far this season are averaging 2.86 runs per game. That is the lowest runs per game average of all 150 Professional Teams. Yep, this is my team.
- Training for Ironman Mont-Tremblant is going very well. As I mentioned above the heat and humidity has rolled in and is here to stay. Every year when this happens I always freak out about my run fitness. I shouldn't freak out because every year it takes me 3-4 weeks to acclimate to running in the pea soup. But with the added fatigue of IM training this year I have not been handling it very well. Until this evening: I decided to get out of the heat and hit the treadmill for my scheduled 55min hill run. I set the TM to a Hills Interval workout that has me top out at an 8% incline. I felt strong the entire run and when I checked my watch at the end of the run, 6.43mi, my average HR was a mere 129bpm. No longer freaking out about run fitness (-:
- The big news today was that Pres Obama came out in support of Gay Marriage. All the talking heads on the cable news networks and radio shoes were overjoyed to have yet another social issue to debate. The overwhelming theme seemed to be that Obama choose to show his support because it is an election year and it was a political maneuver. I disagree as I think it was a political maneuver when he was against same sex marriage in 2008. I mean did anyone really believe he wasn't for this in 2008? Whatever, I could care less. He just keeps trying to change the focus from the shitty economy and the even shittier unemployment numbers. Smoke and mirrors, aka - Hope and Change.
- If you are considering switching from a standard crank to a compact crank on your Tri Bike. Do it. Best decision I have ever made.
- I need some help finding a new show to watch on the trainer. Over the last month I finished off Seasons 1-4 of Sons of Anarchy. It was pretty good (not great) and kept me looking forward to riding. Now I need a new show. I have an Amazon Prime account and it has literally 1000's of shows available. I am looking for something either Action/Drama or SciFi. Gimme some suggestions people!
Thanks for Reading,