Tuesday, June 29, 2010

In the Arena

Thought I'd start my day with my favorite Teddy Roosevelt quote:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Monday, June 28, 2010

St. Andrews Sprint Race Report

2010 St. Andrews Sprint Triathlon
Race Report # 7: 6/20/10


Back to Middletown, Delaware for my 8th time (in a row) at this, the oldest triathlon in Delaware (23rd running). This would be my 7th triathlon of the 2010 season and the 93rd of my career.

Race day dawned very warm with the promise of difficult conditions as the day progressed. For the first time, Piranha Sports was running the event—a development that I did not look forward to as I was sure that the race would lose some of it’s homey, small-time feel as a result.

I had 13 folks in my AG with the biggest worry being Bryan Sauer. I had raced Bryan for the last seven years (although usually not in the same AG—he just aged up) and had beaten him 4 times and he had beaten me the other three, including last year. Bryan is an excellent runner and I figured I’d need at least four minutes on him leaving T2 to stand a chance of holding him off—especially given the poor state of my run. I knew it would be close one-way or the other.

The Swim

Piranha, in its infinite wisdom, decided to change the configuration of the swim course so our ability to compare to past swim times was somewhat compromised. In the past I’ve also been given the opportunity to go off in the first, “elite” wave due to my three prior AG wins here. Today, however, I found myself in the 5th and final wave—for men over 50. There were 43 of us in this last wave.

I lined up to the left, away from the buoy line as I anticipated quite a lot of congestion from the waves in front of me. At the gun, I surged ahead strongly for 15 strokes and then glanced to my right (my non-breathing side) and was shocked to see that I was at least two yards in front of everybody. Yikes! I saw whom I thought was Paul Schlosser (whom is one of the best swimmers in the race) across on the buoy line and I decided that I must be going too hard (even though I felt fine). I decided to back off and just head over and try to swim with Paul as long as I could. I got on his left shoulder and comfortably matched him stroke for stroke.

At the first turn buoy I dropped back to sit on his feet, hoping to be able to hang on as long as I could. We were the first two orange hats and I glanced back and saw Bryan some 10-15 yards behind me (this was very significant as Bryan has always beaten me by 25-40 seconds in the past).

As we hit the final turn buoy, it became clear to me that I was stronger than “Paul” (as it turned out this wasn’t Paul, as he had gone off in the first wave but as it turned out I was more than a minute faster than an obviously unfit Schlosser) and so I surged by him and swam strongly all the way to the swim exit—first in my wave! I hit the shore in 5:39 with an average HR of 158 bpm. As I mentioned above, it’s no longer viable to compare this swim time with prior years but I was 2-3 minutes faster than any of the prior years (my prior best was 7:32 in 2007). It seems to me that the course was shorter than in the past but also clearly I had a fantastic swim.

Unfortunately, the timing mat was a good quarter mile up the hill right at the entrance to the transition area so I really don’t have accurate swim splits for my competitors. My guess is that Bryan was 10 seconds behind me. As I ran up the hill and towards transition, Bryan came streaming past me so his split will show as the fastest on the results page. I ended up with the 25th fastest swim split OA (although Bryan had the 14th so I clearly lost a lot of places as I labored up the hill running to transition—definitely a foreshadowing of difficulties to come). Anyways, this works out officially as the 91st percentile (I probably was really in the top 5%). Here is where I estimate we stood after the swim:

1. Christofferson --------
2. Sauer + 0:10
3. Krippahne + 0:18
4. Hutchinson + 0:43

Transition One

This is one heck of a long tough transition and it was longer this year due to the “neutral” flow pattern dictated by the “McPirahna” folks. Anyways, I was slow running the quarter mile or so back to the bikes and then once in transition actually went faster than my AG competitors. All told, it took me 4:04 to complete T1 and my HR averaged 170 so I know I wasn’t dogging it. Still, I lost 28 seconds to Sauer during T1 and hopped on my bike 18 seconds out of the AG lead.

The Bike

The course is billed as a two-loop, mostly flat, but with several hills, 16-mile affair. In fact it is just 15.6 miles. The wind plays a significant factor at times and today I would judge it was average for the course—say 10-15 mph.

Since I had just begun my taper for IM Germany I was for once, reasonably well rested for this race and I was optimistic that I could turn in a solid bike leg. I hit it hard right from the start and about 1.5 miles in blew past Sauer and tried to put my head down to hammer out the 4+ minutes that I knew that I would need to have a fighting chance of holding him off on the run.

I felt pretty good and my power meter was flashing ok info at me. I rolled through the first lap in 19:50 (which I knew was pretty good, but still off my past performances). I actually felt stronger as the race went on and eventually completed an uneventful bike leg with a time of 39:45. My prior rides here are directly comparable (with the caveat of different environmental conditions) and here is how I have performed here through the years:

2003 39:41 9/271 1/19
2004 39:40 8/275 2/18
2005 39:43 6/299 1/23
2006 39:03 6/263 1/21
2007 38:34 7/257 1/23
2008 38:12 8/294 1/11
2009 41:48 7/251 1/16
2010 39:45 10/268 1/13

So from a historical comparative perspective this was a decent outcome. I averaged 250 watts and an average HR of 162 bpm, which I’m not going to beat myself up over—I’d like to think I’m good for another 10+ watts but it is what it is. My cadence came in at 80 rpm as I continue to be unable to spin at my historically optimal rate of 85 rpm. At 10th OA I came in at the 96.6 %-tile which, (hey I’m 53) is passable for me. The bottom line is that my bike fitness is just now beginning to round into form—definitely delayed by my earlier accident—and I can reasonably expect to beat faster come the end of the summer.

Competitively, my effort, while a good honest attempt, was not sufficient to open up the kind of gap on Sauer I knew that I needed. I was 3:48 faster today on the bike than him but that left me with just a 3:30 advantage going into T2. I didn’t know this of-course but if I had I would have known that my chances of winning the AG were slight. Here is where we stood after the bike:

1. Christofferson --------
2. Sauer + 3:30
3. Hutchinson + 4:49

Transition Two

Simple transition made a little slower by our friends at Piranha Sports. I exited T2 in 1:10 (about 20 seconds slower than all the prior years) and had an average HR of 162. I had the 3rd fastest transition in my AG and picked up a second on Sauer so competitively T2 was a non-event.

The Run

I headed out on the 3-mile cross-country course feeling ok—all things considering. Of-course, my left hip continued to ache and my whole left leg felt tired and weak—unfortunately par for the course for these past 8 weeks or so. That said, I do feel like it is slowly improving and maybe I won’t be a horrible runner for the rest of my life…

I was optimistic that I could hold Bryan off. I didn’t know how big my lead was but I guessed it was close to enough. I tried to push as hard as I could. Because I was in the last wave, only one person caught me on the run for the first 15 minutes or so. I was aware of this being likely to be true even if I was running poorly but it did fill me with hope. My HR was consistently between 165-170 bpm (a little short of optimal but not bad).

With about 0.5-0.6 miles to go I looked back and there was Bryan—not more than 50 yards behind me. I was cooked. A few minutes later he cruised by and I congratulated him on his strong race and imminent triumph. He was just a better triathlete than I was today. I felt a bit deflated and I (and I’m not happy with this) just slowed down and jogged my way to the finish—I’m sure I left 30 seconds out there over the last half-mile. In any event I finished with a 22:54 and an average HR of 167. This is an average mile pace of 7:38. It was my slowest ever run split here and some 3+ minutes off my best effort. My run is in very bad shape for sure. My desultory effort was 6th best in the AG and 78th OA (71.3 %-tile).

I ended up dropping 4:26 to Sauer and lost by 57 seconds. I was 18th OA (93.7 %-tile). It is what it is but obviously if I could run like I have in the past, this would have been an easy AG win as well.

Oh well—here are my final thoughts:

1. Great swim—absolutely no question I can swim faster now than I have ever been able to. I have a great deal of gratitude that this is so.

2. My bike is still improving and beginning to get within shouting distance of previous high-water marks…I think I’ll get stronger as the year goes on but I don’t think I can reach my prior peaks.

3. My run is dismal. End of story. Bad tidings for IM Germany. I’ll still show up and give it my all but I know enough to play it as it lies…

Temperature and Tactics

Well it looks like we may draw a bit of a losing ticket with respect to the weather on Sunday--still a ways away of course but it definitely looks like a pretty solid heat wave on tap for game day. The forecasts i see call for 85-89 degrees as the high (ie what I'll have to deal with on the marathon). also, the water temp has risen 5 degrees F in the last week and is getting dangerously close to non-wetsuit.

I began the year with a goal of setting a new PR (11:19) and breaking 11 hours at IM Germany....I know that it's not the fastest IM course in the world as the bike features cobbies and climbs but with the right fitness, I certainly have to feel I have a shot at it. One of the things I've learned in my triathlon days and ways is that setting time goals for IMs can be a very poor tactical decision. Trying to force a pace that's not realistic given the actual situation on the day can be a recipe for disaster--you can suffer through a major tactical mistake like that in a sprint or even an Oly but at the IM level it can result in a very slow time, DNF or a trip to the hospital. So I'd like to think that I'm smart enough to avoid that.

Here are some things I'm mulling over as I look 6 days out from IM Germany:

1. when I set the goals for this race, it was before I had qualified for Kona. with the KQ, the only objective that really matters to me this year is finishing Kona--I don't want to do anything on July 4th to jeopardize that goal.

2. The heat will be a real problem for me. If it is that hot on race day then my ability to run close to 4 hours will be severly compromised--indeed, it would probably be impossible for me to do so--regular readers of this blog know that I am quite poor in hot/humid conditions on the run. If that is the case, then my time goals are no longer realistic.

3. A non-wetsuit swim will add another 10-20 minutes to my race as I'll need to conserve a bit on the swim due to the added physical stress of a non-wetsuit swim.

4. The construction work on the course has added another 5k. This is not huge--a 185km bike ride vs. a 180km but at my intended pace this does translate into another 8-10 minutes depending on what that extra 5k looks like.

5. My run is NOT ready to hammer an IM marathon. I just have too much more PT to do and indeed I'm hoping I can be ready to really run at Kona. I'm realistically at least 30 minutes off of my run potential right now.

So, given that, I'm going to keep an open mind in the run-up to the race and be prepared to dial back my efforts on the swim and bike in order to ensure I can survive a challenging run. That is NOT the plan but it very well could be.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

I week to Germany!

Taper continues/for the week:

swim: 7200 yds
bike: 132 miles
run: 11 miles
time: 11:15

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

This and That

10 days to Germany! Current forecast for race day is a high of 74--sign me up for that! Although it can (and probably will) chan ge between now and then. Water temp is currently 68 degrees which is right on the border for me to go sleeveless or full wetsuit.

Had my last PT session with Rudy on Monday. He says my job now is to rebuild the strength of my left leg--it is dramatically weaker (and smaller) than my right leg and is clearly creating a lot of problems for me on the run. I'll try to do what i can over the next week but it probably is more like a 3 month or more project--Kona?

My bike is in to get set up for Germany--going to run a 55/39 and 12/26 set-up...same as Oceanside--should allow me to hammer the flats but also deal with the climbs of the course...

Monday, June 21, 2010

Two weeks to Germany

I had a solid race yesterday (if you ignore the whole running part of it). I'll post a RR shortly. Facing facts, my run is not going to be ready for the big show in 2 weeks and I see a great deal of suffering for me after I get off the bike--I don't wish to sound negative but that is what my 93 triathlons of experience is telling me....we'll see, I'll take it one step at a time if it comes to that.

I'm now into my taper (yeah! maybe this will allow my hip to heal a bit). My numbers for the past week reflect the start of this process:

Swim: 8382 yards
Bike: 150 miles
Run: 21 miles
Time: 15:44

I anticipate a workload of 10 hours or so this week and just 5 next week. I head for Germany on Thursday night July 1st and expect to arrive in Frankfurt just 45 hours before game time....

Saturday, June 19, 2010


sorry for not posting for a while--busy with the usual time demands of early summer. I raced last weekend which you can find a write-up on directly below this post.

Last week I backed off slightly mileage wise:

Swim: 10186 yards
Bike: 241 miles
Run: 26 miles
Time: 20.6 hours

Backed off more this week and will race at St. Andrews tomorrow. Then a real 14 day taper into IM Germany.....getting close now!

Presidential Lakes Olympic Race Report

Presidential Lakes Olympic Triathlon
Race Report Number 6: 6/13/2010


Three weeks in front of IM Germany and with a weather forecast calling for brutal conditions I decided to opt out of Eagleman (which turned out to be a solid decision). I wanted to race to maintain my sharpness so I opted for this race at the last minute.

I drove the 80 or so miles north to Pemberton, NJ for the premier of this new Olympic race. I didn’t know what to expect competition wise but it appeared it would be a smallish field.

Race morning was hot and humid with little wind. The temp would climb to 91 degrees by the end of the race in a cloudless sky. More like July conditions than mid-June.

I did not taper for this race—not wanting to interrupt my IM training but I did not have as much training in the week before this race as I had the prior week before Jersey Genesis and I expected that I would be able to go a bit harder today.

The Swim

The swim was a two-lap course that seemed to be accurately measured. I hopped in the water with the rest of the over 40 males who comprised the second wave. The course was mostly left turns (which I prefer) and I set up on the outside so I could keep an eye on the tactical situation. Some guy with a snorkel (Really?) lined up next to me.

At the gun I surged ahead and then backed off and tried to immediately settle into my IM pace. I wanted to cruise at that pace today even though I knew I could go a bit faster. It seemed like a good dress rehearsal for Germany. Snorkel man and several other folks were ahead of me but I could see I was pulling away from the vast majority of the field.

I felt strong and very comfortable and just steadily made my way around the course and exited the water at the end of my first lap in 11:46 with my HR averaging 151 bpm—very comfortable effort. I ran around the lifeguard chair and then proceeded to repeat another drama free lap. The second lap was a bit slower (12:13 with an average HR of 155) so I completed the swim in 23:59 with an average HR of 153 bpm.

I was very pleased with both the time and the ease of the effort and I assumed that I had the lead in my AG. Little did I know that Ken Lehner had entered at the last minute. Ken is a very strong New Jersey triathlete—a perennial All-American whom is out of my league from a competitive standpoint. The last time I raced him was at Sunset in 2005 where he was 7:03 faster than me over a half-mile swim!!!! Today was a bit of a moral victory as I was 3:40 behind him. I was second out of eight in my AG and 10th out of 107 OA (91.6 %-tile). Here are the AG standings after the swim:

1. Lehner --------
2. Christofferson + 3:40
3. Strauss + 4:25
4. Vlacich +10:03
5. Lee +12:48

Transition One

I promptly completed my T1 in 2:10 with an average HR of 166 bpm. This was the 2nd fastest in the AG (to Lehner again) and I was 22nd OA. I jumped on my bike blissfully unaware that I was almost 4 minutes behind.

The Bike

After last week’s poor bike performance, I was interested in producing a better power output today. My legs were tired but with “only” 241 miles in my legs this week versus the 300+ of the prior week I thought I had a reasonable chanced to do so.

The course was a twisty turny run-out of a mile and a half or so out to a 3 loop course of a relatively flat and well-paved road. With the turns in the run-out (and back-in) and the 6 180 degree turns during the laps I knew this would not be a real fast course and I knew my average power would be effected as well due to the technical nature of the course. It also turned out that the bike course was long at 26.1 miles, which I can only attribute to sloppy course set-up.

I felt pretty good all things considered and passed a fair number of people each lap. I did get passed by one young fellow (Reitinger) whom had started in the wave before me but I had significantly out swum—he blew past me on his way to the best bike split overall.

My ride was uneventful and I ended up cruising the 26.1 miles in 67:07 at an average HR of 156. This works out to be a pedestrian 23.3 mph although on a less turny course I’m sure I would have been over 24 mph today. Power wise I averaged 241 watts, which is marginally acceptable given my training load. My average rpms were 79.

Competitively I had the 4th fastest bike split OA (97.2 %-tile) and I had the fastest split in our AG putting a solid 2:45 on Lehner. Five years ago I was 17 seconds faster on a 16-mile course so I guess there is good news in this comparative data. Anyways, here is where we stood after the bike:

1. Lehner --------
2. Christofferson + 1:12
3. Strauss +11:32
4. Lee +19:28
5. Vlacich +25:19

Transition Two

I moved very quickly through T2 with an elapsed time of 1:03 and an average HR of 152 bpm. This was one second slower than Vlacich but faster than the rest of the AG. I even picked up 9 seconds on Lehner and was just 63 seconds behind him with the run to come. In fact, I was now in 4th place in the OA race—of course, I did not know any of this.

The Run

So to quickly kill the suspense, Lehner is normally a 40-minute 10K runner in Olympics (he is a 2:08-2:12 Olympic distance triathlete). I didn’t know Ken was in the race but if I had I would not have spent even one second worrying about catching him.

I felt tired, thirsty and dead-legged right from the start. It occurred to me that I hadn’t really given any thought to nutrition—basically treated this race like I would a sprint—and I only had one bottle of fluid and no other source of energy—I would soon learn that this was a mistake.

The run was partially on paved roads and partially on a soft sandy forest road. It was quite flat. It was very hot and the sun was beating down. I have no idea how long the run was but I have to believe that in addition to me being very slow today that the run was long. I ended up taking 54:10 to complete the run. My average HR was only 162 bpm as I bonked a bit about 2/3rds of the way through the run. Lehner only ran 47:50 so the heat and length of the run probably affected everybody—in fact, only one person broke 40 today and only 10 broke 45. I was 3rd in my AG and a dismal 52nd overall.

I ended up the race in 2:28:30, about seven minutes behind Lehner and 11:32 in front of Strauss. I would have won the 45-49 AG by about nine minutes—oh well. Overall I finished 17th (85th %-tile). Not the best of races but I’ll take it considering everything.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Jersey Genesis Race Report

2010 Jersey Genesis Triathlon
Race Report #5: 6/5/10


Fifth triathlon of the 2010 season and my 91st OA. Fifteenth running of this “old-school” tradition—one of the more established local triathlons for sure. Advertised distances were: 0.5-mile swim/16-mile bike/4-mile run. This was the third time that I would race this race (but I had not raced here since 2003). Race morning the weather was hot and very humid and we were well into a weeklong heat wave.

I entered the race 4 weeks before my “A” race at IM Germany and pleased with my swim (so far in this season) and how much my bike has improved since my crash—I was getting demonstrably stronger each week that went by. However, my run was still quite suspect as I continued to struggle with my left hip flexors.

Competition wise, (22 deep in my 50-54 YO AG) I did not see any overwhelming competitors. There were a couple of strong swimmers entered and I looked forward to gauging the strength of my swim fitness against them. I was just finishing a 327-mile ride week and over 25 hours of overall training so I knew I might be too tired to race well but frankly, with the progress I’ve seen over the last few weeks I was optimistic about my ability to crank a good race.

The Swim

A rather pleasant triangle in a river “bay” that empties into the Atlantic was the swim venue. I must say, while I disliked this swim back in the day, today this strikes me as a nice place to swim.

I am in the 2nd wave, 45+ males, and start way right (as is my custom--so that I can keep an eye on the field as I breathe on the left side.) Off we go and as has been the pattern this year I quickly begin to surge ahead of the field. I have one fellow to my right who is swimming strong and I immediately suspect that it is Grout—one of the aforementioned strong swimmers. To my left are only 2-3 swimmers who are pulling away and I know one of them must be Hemmerle (an extremely strong 50-54 YO swimmer).

The first turn is about 150-175 yards out and since we are swimming a lot faster than the rest of the wave the buoy navigation is quite easy. I cross paths with the fellow I assume to be Grout a couple of times and then put my head down and begin to move away. During this long stretch parallel to the shore I make a number of navigation mistakes (we are swimming into the sun and through a lot of slower swimmers) but keep on pushing.

As the swim ends I feel my heart “fluttering” a bit but I realize that I’ve not pushed as hard as I could, that I made a bunch of mistakes and that I seemed unnaturally “spent” from this short swim.

From a competitive standpoint I was holding my own as the following data indicates. Here was my AG standing after the swim:

1. Hemmerle --------
2. Christofferson + 2:46
3. Grout + 3:29
4. Sherry + 4:08
5. Bruno + 5:39

The most interesting piece of data is that I was faster than Grout. I have raced him many times before and have never swum faster than him before. Over the last two years I raced against him at Hammonton (’08 and ’09) and at Bassman (’08). He has (on average) been 9.9% faster than me in the swim (range: 5.4-16.4%). However, today I was 5.1% faster and 15% faster versus prior years (which has been typical of my relative swim improvement versus last year.)

However, I do think I left a bit on the table. Overall I was only 22nd of 193 (89.1 %-tile). My HR was high at 158bpm for the 12:47 it took me to swim the half-mile.

Transition One

I struggled as I ran up the beach towards the racks. I was unusually spent and had to jog slowly. When I reached my space I almost threw-up as it seemed that I was overheated (in retrospect it was way to warm in the water to wear a full wetsuit. In theory it’s supposed to be 78 degrees or below to allow a wetsuit but my guess is that it was 80-82 degrees). I sat down and took several seconds to compose myself and get my HR back under control. I finally did and I took 1:54 to execute T1 with an average HR of 1:54 bpm. This was the 4th fastest in my AG but considerably faster (1:14) than Hemmerle and my AG exited T1 as follows:

1. Hemmerle -------
2. Christofferson + 1:32
3. Grout + 2:10
4. Sherry + 3:02
5. Bruno + 3:23

The Bike

Time to do my thing. Looking out through my glasses I passed a steady stream of folks (including Hemmerle) but consistently saw surprisingly low wattage numbers. I was FRIED!!!! No high-end punch at all. I did everything I could to push it but it was just not there at all. Hard to sustain in the 230s…Yet I seemed to pass everyone in my sight (this would be predominantly slower guys under 45 who started 4 minutes in front of me in wave 1).

I tried to soldier on and finished the bike leg with an elapsed time of 40:10. I measured the course at 15.5 miles so my average speed was only 23.2 mph (yuck). It was fairly windy but that just does not cut it. My average power was only 236 watts (yikes!). My average HR was 161bpm, which isn’t that bad (should be 165) but that correlated with my lousy power indicates someone who wasn’t physically ready to rumble.

Competitively this played out as I only had the 12th fastest bike (94.3 %-tile). In my AG I did do fairly well delivering the fastest bike ride by almost 3 minutes and more importantly out-splitting Hemmerle by almost 5 and a half minutes. Here is where we were after the bike:

1. Christofferson --------
2. Hemmerle + 3:44
3. Sherry + 4:31
4. Grout + 4:50
5. Josephson + 4:53

Transition Two

Despite being in wave two I entered a pretty empty transition zone. I could tell I was holding my own and even though I really had no real data on where I stood in my AG, I suspected I had a big (good enough) lead. My transition was uneventful and executed in 1:09 with an average HR of 156 bpm. In my AG the competitive situation was essentially unchanged.

The Run

Although I didn’t know if for sure I left T2 with more than a four-minute lead. It was very hot and I was, how can I say it, very uninspired. I just sensed that my race was quite slow but no one was going to get me in my AG. I should not have thought this way but I did and I was right.

I basically jogged the run with an average HR of only 163bpm and finished the advertised 4-miles in 31:26. This was only the 8th fastest in my AG (68.1 %-tile) and 75th OA (61.6 %-tile). I finished 23rd OA (88.6 %-tile) in 1:27:25 and easily won my AG:

1. Christofferson --------
2. Sherry + 3:40
3. Hemmerle + 4:03
4. Bruno + 4:58
5. Josephson + 5:09

Bottom line: I was very fatigued entering this race and my results showed it. Rested I think I’m at least 4-6 minutes faster. Oh well. It was more than enough to win the AG. And for this I am very grateful.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Eagleman decision

Have decided to bail on E-man--here's why:

1. Raced last week with a ton of training in my legs and my race performance suffered (big surprise!!!). This was by design as I'm playing catch-up getting ready for IM Germany (post bike crash) and I certainly didn't want to taper for a sprint.

2. E-Man is an entirely different beast--not a good choice to train through a half-Ironman and so I'd have to taper for 4-5 days and then recover for 2-3 days post race. As a result, I'd lose a week of training in the 19-26 day out period before IMGER. with a 14+ day taper this seemed like a suboptimal choice from the IM race perspective. If I was already IM fit and ready to go it would be a different story but I'm still building and I need the training time.

3. I really wanted to set a new PR at the H-IM distance at E-man but it's going to be 89 degrees and very humid and I've seen that movie before. Further, my run is not ready to set a PR. When I did my 4:43 I ran a 1:38 half-marathon and I'd need to do that again to have a chance. No way I can with my leg. In February, i thought I'd be ready but with the bike crash and the slow nature of my rehab the best I could realistically expect (in good conditions) would be a 1:50 or so--won't get it done.

4. I've done E-man 4 times already and I already have my Kona slot.

5. I rode 115 miles today and went through 56 miles in 2:40:XX (faster than Oceanside and an average of 21 mph). I did this with my road bike, training wheels, trafic lights, a road helmet, a warm-up, etc. this was the fastest H-IM distance training ride I've ever done. I'm making progress on the bike and getting faster each week. for this ride overall I was 5 minutes faster (the wind picked up in the last couple of hours of my ride) than last week (36 minutes faster than 4 weeks ago), 6 watts higher over a ride that was a half mile longer. Skipping E-man will allow me to get one more over-distance ride in before the taper.

6. I need another long-run (approaching 3 hours) and can do it on Sunday or Monday if I skip E-man.

Call me a wimp but that's where it's at!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The week that was

For the week:

Swim: 8600 yards. Felt in my race yesterday that my inattentiveness to my swom training might be costly me just a bit--I'd like to get up above 10k for each of the next two weeks

Bike: 327 miles. Big week with a lot of hard efforts--probably a primary cause of my crappy bike yesterday at Jersey Genesis

Run: 20 miles. No big run this week. Last week was 46 miles and this week will be bigger.

Time: 25 hours--big, high quality week

Have to really think about Eagleman--might be better to not do it--maybe a shorter race and keep the training intnesity and volume high this week....hmmmm

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Jersey Genesis Quick Flash

-Raced today at the 15th annual Jersey Genesis Triathlon..race report to follow--this is a summary of the headlines

-Mixed results though on balance disappointing

-I did win my AG--top time by 3-4 minutes against 22 people in my AG...however....

-I felt pretty bad in the swim...almost puked in T-1. Probably should not have used a full wet-suit. also I have been robbing Peter (my swim) to pay Paul (all the things I couldn't do after the bike accident) and now i think I need to crush my swim for the next two weeks...still 2nd out of the water in my AG

-I had the best bike in my AG by a fair bit but relative to my known standards I was pretty bad today. I think the reality is that if I continue to train 22+ hours/week (which I am just completing) and do long rides/runs (115/17 miles) in a race week then I really can't expect to crush a sprint race.

-Or maybe I'm older and not really in very good shape--from an absolute perspective...

-the main isssue i am dealing with is whether or not I should do E-man this weekend. Here was he plan:

6/6: bang out 2:30-3:00 hours on the run plus about an hour of easy bike spinning
6/7: 1 hour on the alter-G (9 miles) and then a 3500 swim and a 50 mile multi-surge ride.
6/8: 1 hour of pt followed by a max-out 115 mile bike ride
6/9: 3000 swim/1 hour easy spin and a 6 mile run///then travel to San francisco
6/10 easy jog in SF
6/13: eagleman

the question is should I bail on e-man and just try to catch up on my training as much as I can...IM Germany is just around the corner,,,or should I just kill myself at e-man...

BTW, It's going to be close to 90 degrees....my guess is that e-man will be slow and painful

Friday, June 4, 2010

Injury update

Here is a quick update on progress on my three injuries:

1. ruptured bursa in my right elbow: swelling is about 95% gone now. The area is still tender and I can feel scar material in there when I press on the area but my elbow is 100% functional and this in jury has no impact on my swimming.

2. Extensor tendonitis in my left foot: After backing off of cycling for 3-4 days, I've been aggressive about icing my foot and using Voltarin cream. I've also left my left bike shoe unstrapped during my rides the last 10 days. On Wednesday of this week I was able to get through a 115-mile ride with only modest discomfort and that concentrated over the last 20 miles or so. This seems to be under control but I'll have to stay viligant to keep it that way. I'll probably ride IM Germany with my straps very loose.

3, Left hip problems. This has been the most difficult to deal with but after 5 weeks of therapy I think I can see light at the end of the tunnel. My 3rd 115-mile ride was 19 minutes faster than the 2nd and 31 minutes faster than the first. Also, this last ride was in 91 degree heat. Encouragingly, I was able to stay in the aero position for over 85% of the time and my hip did not get real sore and stiff likei t had for much of the last 6 weeks since my bike accident. Rudy was able to isolate a major issue which basically has major elements of my left hip flexor complex "shut-down". We are doing some cool exercises to re-boot my hip flexors and I've noted a great deal more openess and much less pain there over the last week. rudy thinks I need at least 3-4 more weeks but I'm getting optimistic that we might get this solved in time for IM Germany.

I'm racing tomorrow at Jersey Genesis and I intend to really let it rip on the bike and see if I can deliver a bike ride more consistent with my past performances over the last 3-4 years. This will be a major test of my fitness and readiness to hammer and will be an important indicator for me as I race Eagleman the following week.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Week/Month Stats

Last week I backed off the bike in an attempt to get my extensor tendonitis in my foot to calm down. I shifted the focus to my run including a 17 miler:

Swim: 5000 yards
bike: 161 mikes
Run: 46 miles
Time: 18:40

For the month of May, good solid training numbers:

Swim: 30,000 yards
Bike: 979 miles
Run: 121 miles
Time: 94:17

Less than 5 weeks to IM Germany!