"It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, 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 and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement; and who at the worst, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat."

Never, Never, Never Quit.


Countdown to B2B


Monday, May 12, 2008

Sharks Classic Race Report

Got to Siesta Key at about 5:55 am for the 7:00 race and already I could tell it would be a bigger race than last year. The wind was already kicking up at about 10 mph which doesn't bode well as the high winds usually don't start until later in the day. I checked in and got my bike racked and everything laid out of the race. Out of transition at about 6:40 and went to the beach. The surf in the bay was a choppy from the wind but nothing too bad. It looked like we'd be fighting waves on the way out and getting the benefit on the way back.

I was supposed to go off with the over 40 group at 7:06 but the buoys were taking longer than they expected and the elites didn't take off until about 7:15. I was in the 3rd wave and took off about 7:19. The course had us swimming our about 100 yards, then turning right and swimming down to the turn around and coming back, keeping the buoys on our left the entire time. The first buoy was at a sand bar so most all the swimmers were running/wading to it before turning right and I did also. Seemed to be able to get there a little quicker than swimming able to get my heartrate going a little before swimming.

Once I turned right, I immediately felt pretty good, which isn't unusual for me in the swim but it usually becomes a struggle sooner rather than later. I found I was right and and waves were pushing into on the way out but they weren't too bad and I was able to get into a good rhythm and before I knew it I was at the turn around buoy and heading back. I was still feeling good at this point and the push back was nice. Pretty uneventful coming back but I was starting to struggle a little and didn't think I was going to do as well as last year(35:56) but as I exited the water I looked at my watch and saw 32:20 as I crossed the timing mat!! I was excited and all the swimming I've been doing the last month seemed to have paid off.

The transition run to T1 is in soft sand and about 1/4 mile so I knew I had to hustle to keep the time down. Last year I did 4:24 on T1 and this year I was able to shave a little time off with a 4:06. I was on my bike and on the course quickly and feeling good. The course is a 2 loop long oval and the wind was in our faces to start. It's about 4.5 miles to the turn around and I was able to hold a steady pace just trying to maintain decent speed before the turn. Once on the turn I tried to push it hard for the 7+ miles or so before the next turn around. There was a section just before the turn where you had to turn right and then left very quickly and all I heard was left so I turned left where I was supposed to turn right and quickly realized my mistake. I lost a few maybe 10 seconds but nothing major. The rest of the ride was uneventful and I was able to finish in 1:19:59 as opposed to 1:23:49 last year but last years course was about a mile long on my bike computer and this years was pretty close to exactly 24.8. I hit T2 was in and out quickly but gave back 40 seconds to last year with a 1:40.

I was off on the run which starts with the first mile or so cutting back and forth thru some woods before heading out onto an asphalt path. I was feeling pretty good and running steady if not fast. There are no mile markers on the run so I have no idea where I was at any one point or what any of my splits were. There was no shade after leaving the woods and it was already 85+ and high humidity and the sun/heat was taking it's toll. I still felt better than last year and figured without the beach section at the end, I would surely beat last years time. Except apparently after the beach section was removed early in the year, many participants complained they liked it and it was added back in. So, with 1.7 miles to go according to the race director, we cutover to the beach through very loose sand(probably 1/4 mile) until we hit the hard packed sand. Then it was swerving in and out of all the beach goers for the next 1.2 miles or so until we turned back up the beach(and the soft sand) to the finish. I was shocked when I looked at my watch and realized I gave back 2 full minutes to my less than impressive run from last year.

Though I was happy swim and bike my run leaves a lot to be desired. Only recently have I begun to run pain free and I've yet to get back on the track for speed work, so there is some hope of a little speed. But for someone that used to be a decent runner, having the run as my limited in the tri is very disappointing. I think my swim and bike will come along fine as the summer progresses but I've got to definitely start to attack the run a little more.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

May update

So far so good for May. First week in the books and I'm at 11 hours. Did my 10 mile run this morning and it's starting to get warm. I've been fortunate the last month or so where I was able to take advantage of some cool mornings for my long runs but this morning it was 72 when I left and 82 when I finished. Just a hint of what's to come this summer.

This Saturday is the Sarasota Sharks Classic triathlon. I'm doing the Olympic distance(1500 meter gulf swim, 40k bike and 10k run). I did this race last year and hope to beat my time in each discipline. Last year the bike and run were long and the last half of the run was on soft sand. This year, they claim to have corrected the distances and no beach run, so I should be able to set my goal.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

April in the bag

So, April ended with me hitting or exceeding all my goals for the month. I was hoping to break 40 hours and went 47 plus. Had a 50 mile/4 mile brick, 2 66 mile rides, 3 10 mile runs and 2 2500 yard swims in there. Took 2 days off and including 2 a days, I had 36 workouts. Considering May is going to be a tough month with each weekend booked solid, I tried to get as good a base as possible. I will probably struggle to break the 40 hour mark again this month with all the commitments but I'm still hoping to get there. Also, I'd like to get a 70+ mile ride in and a couple more longer bricks.

But, with school ending at the end of this month, no more gymnastics meets after June 6th and baseball games ending, June will be scheduled as a huge month.

I'm hoping to update this a little more often for you 3 people that read it:) I'll try to get updates 2-3 times a week including some more pictures and maybe even a video blog or 2.